An Award-Winning Disclaimer

A charming little Magpie whispered this disclaimer into my ear, and I'm happy to regurgitate it into your sweet little mouth:

"Disclaimer: This blog is not responsible for those of you who start to laugh and piss your pants a little. Although this blogger understands the role he has played (in that, if you had not been laughing you may not have pissed yourself), he assumes no liability for damages caused and will not pay your dry cleaning bill.

These views represent the thoughts and opinions of a blogger clearly superior to yourself in every way. If you're in any way offended by any of the content on this blog, it is clearly not the blog for you. Kindly exit the page by clicking on the small 'x' you see at the top right of the screen, and go fuck yourself."

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Check Check It One Two

There was a great piece on "60 Minutes" that I still remember from maybe 10 years ago. I know it must have been that long ago because I can remember watching it at my parents house, with them, in the living room. The house I grew up in had only a living room. I didn't know what a "family room" was until I saw one at a friend's house. I still kind of don't know what it is. It looks just like a living room, except it's called a "family room." I also don't understand "dens." I thought dens were things boy scouts huddled in and in which they received merit badges for repressing homosexuality. Some houses have living rooms, dens and family rooms. That to me just seems like too many sectionals-- and anybody with good taste can tell you that one sectional is one sectional too many.

Anyway, so this "60 Minutes" piece was a Morley Safer jobbie. Morley was profiling, I think, some psychiatrist who was employing rather unorthodox ways of assisting his patients with their fears/compulsions. The one segment of this piece I remember very well was the part with the woman with OCD. There are different manifestations of OCD, for those of you who learned about the disorder from Tony Shaloub. Some people are neat freaks. Others are tappers, pickers, washers, thinkers and checkers.

This woman was a checker.

She would get into her car in the morning for her ten or twelve minute commute to work, and would routinely arrive for work an hour or so late. How is this possible, you might ask? Well, it's not a complicated mathematican conundrum. This woman was so consumed by the fear that, during the first minute or two of her drive, she had hit a pedestrian that she would double back and check. Then she would triple back. And quadruple back. And quintuple back-- just to make sure. Then, she'd do it several dozen more times, you know, until she was really sure she didn't commit vehicular homicide (not to mention fleeing the scene of an accident and failing to render aid).

She was obviously in danger of losing her job, amongst a lot of other things, if she could not get this inescapable compulsion under control. See, whether or not the fear is irrational is basically immaterial. As long as it is interfering with a person's ability to function in the world, the fear might as well be real, because it's real to the nutjob. I mean person.

So, eventually, this woman sought help from this psychiatrist, and that's where Morley and the camera crew come in. The shrink asked the woman if she'd ever actually hit a pedestrian.

"Well, I don't know," she said, not wanting to commit 100%, in case the police were watching. "I don't think I have."

"Do you know what it would feel like to hit a person with your car?" the psychiatrist asked.

"Well, I don't know," she answered honestly.

No, honey, of course you don't know, because you've never done it. Can you see where Dr. Shrinky-Dink is going here?

With small cameras rigged all over this woman's car, she set out for work one morning like she always does. Meanwhile, Dr. Wackadoo is hiding behind a large bush about 3/4ths of a mile away from her house with a life-sized, true-weighted dummy, dressed in a t-shirt and jogging shorts for optimum realism. He gets the signal that numbnuts is approaching the bush and, when the timing's just right, he lobs the dummy right in front of her car with all the might he can muster.

"AAAAAAAAAUUGGHH!!" screams Fruitcake McGee as she slams right into the fucking short-shorts-wearing sack of potatoes. Fortunately, she didn't drive off a cliff or into another vehicle. Or have a fucking aneurysm.

"There," said the soon-to-be-defrocked psychiatrist to his breathless, virtually catatonic patient, "that is what it feels like to hit a person."


I'm a checker, too, though not to this degree. If I had great insurance and/or lots of money, I might actually look this goofball up, but I'm a little trepidatious about seeing how he'll make me confront my fear of being in an airline disaster.

My checking is rooted in personal insecurity, and an immense fear of being "found out." See, in my professional life, I'm wise-cracking and sarcastic-- but it's relatively clean. I know how to function and survive in the professional world, I know boundaries of good taste and I adhere to them because I know that there are grave consequences if I don't. Who I am around my family and close friends, and the blogosphere, well, that's different. It's not like I'm "pretending" in one life or the other, they're just different facets of the same personality that, unfortunately, due to societal constraints, are not allowed to function at the same time.

Fuck you, society.

Because of these two parts of myself, I'm always scared that the obscene part is going to some how come out in the professional part. When I write work emails, my tired eyes scan and scan and scan the text for any scrap of profanity that might have wedged itself into the text or a spreadsheet-- because you never know, right? I mean, I'm capable of writing some pretty awful things, aren't I? What if, just what if, something dirty got on one of my tittylicking spreadsheets?

I'd be done for.

So I check.

And then I check again.

My eyes go left to right left to right left to right left to right left to right.

Then I hit send.

And then, invariably, I go into my Sent Mail folder and open it up, petrified that NOW I'm going to find the "fuck" or the "cunt" in my business letter. It's never there. But I always check, because I'm a checker, and that's how we mothafuckas roll.

Since I write emails to my wife from work a lot, and typically sign them "Love," and then I immediately move on to write to a colleague, I'm always paranoid that I'll have signed an email to a co-worker or Board Member "Love." Because it's so automatic when writing to Mrs. Apron, I can't conceive that it's possible that the automatic way I sign my work emails, usually "Thanks" or "--" won't engage, well, automatically. I guess I could always just go, "Ooops, sorry-- I thought I was writing to my wife" but I would inevitably be regarded as a fuckup basketcase who can't even be trusted to compose a simple piece of e-correspondence. And then it's the breadlines!

Another thing I am always questioning myself on is, "Did you put on deodorant today?" It's not that I smell bad, I don't (if I did, then it would be pretty easy to discern whether or not I put on deodorant), it's just that certain of these lavatory tasks are done so quickly, so routinely, so unceremoniously that it's really difficult to remember if they're actually done at all. So, logically, I sometimes make a ceremony out of putting on deodorant. Sometimes I undo the cap, stare at it and go, "I'm putting on deodorant now, I'm putting on deodorant now, I'm putting on deodorant now." Other times, I hold it up to my mouth like a microphone and sing a song,

"Deeee-odorant! Makes me glint! Slap you under my arms! It's slick and cool feeling! Makes me all gooey under my haaaaaaaaaaairs!"

That way, it's easier to remember doing it. "Oh, yeah, I sang that gay-ass while the dog was staring at me and my wife was cracking up in the next room. I remember that."

You'd think I would be able to feel the gross, goopy sensation under my arms but, an hour or two into my day, when I start to doubt myself, I trick myself into believing that the glooby, wet feeling under there is sweat-- you know-- having formed after I forgot to apply deodorant.

I know what that psychiatrist would do with me.

After a week of ordering me to go to work without applying deodorant, he'll look at me and say,

"THAT'S what forgetting to wear deodorant smells like."

After sending expletive-riddled, pornographic emails replete with close-up pictures of gaping assholes and video clips of overweight Bavarian porno starlettes shitting on each other to all of my coworkers and elderly family members, he'll look at me and say,

"THAT'S what fucking up at work looks like."

Sometimes I'm glad my insurance doesn't cover mental health.


  1. So that's why I had to proof-read that newsletter you sent out this week for expletives.

  2. OH. Oh man. That. Was. Brilliant.
    I haven't laughed like that for weeks. Months maybe.
    What a blog entry.

    I'm such a checker too. I think that doc should get his ass sued off though...if he tried that shit with me I'll kick the crap out of him.
    Sadly I had my fears confirmed yesterday as I sent a text message to a client that was meant for my wife while I was distracted on a bus...she was so confused and I was just relieved that I, for once, didn't say something inappropriate. Nevertheless it was still bad and even badder to validate my mental problems.

    on a side note don't you think Andy Rooney was sort of a blogger before blogs existed?

  3. tee hee, your a crackup, im putting deodrant on now,
    that would be quite humourous to sign a work email with love, i dare you to do it, to someone forgiving, preferbly a male.


Got something to say? Rock on with your badass apron!