Monday, January 31, 2011
I learned that a middle aged man wearing koala bear socks throwing himself into a wall, knocking down a podium and falling over a desk is funny.
I learned that the "Wizard of Oz" can be analyzed to actual, literal, real and pulseless death.
I learned that, in days of yore, affluent audience members ostensibly there to see an opera actually mostly used their opera glasses to spy on other affluent audience members and that people more often than not went to the theatre to be seen, and not to see a play.
I learned that Al Pacino is, in one way or another, always Looking for Richard, and that I could watch him looking for a misplaced sock and still be emotionally satisfied.
I learned that I still had a long way to go as far as becoming a playwright went. And went it did.
I learned the Dustin Hoffman/Laurence Olivier "Marathon Man" method acting "My boy, why don't you just act?" quip, which gawky theatre majors the world over tell to skinny brunette, emo theatre chicks with glo-tape on their Chuck Taylors at emo theatre parties in hopes of having awkward emo theatre sex.
(It doesn't work.)
What I never learned in my Intro to Theatre class, held lo those many years ago, was that, when going to the theatre, if you choose not to get up from your seat during intermission, you run the risk of being farted on by the theatre patrons standing up in the row behind you.
On Friday night, some jack farted on my wife's head.
We were downtown seeing "A Skull in Conemarra," a desperate, hilarious, drunken, feck-me-arse Irish play by Martin McDonagh. And, I've got to tell you-- it was excellent. But, I've also got to tell you: after working a full day, racing home, getting ready, shoveling dinner down, trotting off downtown, which is always a chore, especially in the snow and ice and muck-covered streets, to have my wife get her head farted on by some middle-aged prune-lips during intermission was just an injustice I was ill-equipped emotionally to deal with.
I almost snapped.
"Excuse me, would you like a cork or something placed up in there? I could arrange that for you," I wanted to say, but didn't.
"Pardon me-- but that is my wife's head, not your Herman Miller Aeron Chair (now available in Sit-for-Less True Black)," I thought I might quip, but didn't.
"The characters in the play are supposed to be disgusting-- we're supposed to be cultured," I thought of opining, but didn't.
Have you ever had a S/O farted on (by someone who wasn't you)? It's really demoralizing. If I were some thick-skulled brute from Northeast Philly, I probably would have dragged the guy outside by his pubes. Then again, were I some thick-skulled brute from Northeast Philly, I probably wouldn't have been in the audience of "A Skull in Conemarra," so there we are.
Nevertheless, I wanted to slap his face with a glove or something. Pistols at dawn. Let's have a fart-off if you're so keen on ass-blasting in my wife's general direction.
They say that live theatre's unpredictable, and, having been in more than my fair share of shows, I can rightfully state that it's true. John Reed, the recently deceased comic patter lead of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, once told a friend of mine that he took great pleasure in sidling up in front of the ladies' chorus and farting on them during productions. For those of you who think that theatre is for the hoity toity, think again.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
You know, the kind of guy who brags about his kids' accomplishments-- even though his kids are in their sixties. He rattles off his children's gross annual salaries in polite conversation, says things like, "They're doin' pretty well for themselves," and proudly proclaims, after recounting some errant hardship of his youth, "I turned out okay."
Granted, my grandfather was no prince, but I think she's taken a bit of a step down.
Being a bit obsessive about my own meekness and humility (can that be true if I am making a statement like that?), I bristle in the presence of blowhards. They make me uncomfortable, embarrassed. In a word: not so fresh.
What are they trying to prove?
Whom are they showing up?
How small are their penises?
Is it dinner time yet?
Will Burt Kwouk ever make another movie?
Whatever will we use our $25.00 Fandango giftcard on? There's nothing worth seeing.
You know what I'm saying, tough guy?
Right. So. Blowhards. Fucking annoying & such.
Because I absolutely despise this personality type, I am not acquainted intimately with too many blowhards. I am, however, on one or two of their Undisclosed Recipient email address lists. Apparently.
This sort of thing happens when you are just universally loved and adored by such a diverse cross-section of the human condition, as am I. Hahaha. That's funny blowhard talking fun times.
Although I'm not sure, because I really haven't given this too much thought-- I think some people go on a continuum from Asshole to Blowhard. When you brag about yourself, you're an asshole. When you move to becoming a nonentity who is forced to brag about your kids, I think you become a blowhard. That's not to say that you can't be a blowhard about yourself, but it becomes much more annoying when you transfer onto your offspring.
And, of course, you have to do it in a super-obnoxious way.
I received the following email last night from a blowhard on whose Undisclosed Recipient list I must, for some reason, dwell.
Which is awesome.
I have omitted, obfuscated, redacted, and altered the contents of the email to remove personal, identifying details to prevent this blowhard from finding out I posted his email and possibly resulting in some very annoying litigation. Believe me, I'll do almost anything to avoid having to sit in a courtroom anywhere near this guy.
I have re-named the individuals in this email Blowhard Dad, Blowhard Son, and Blowhard Fiancee. Because I'm clever.
"Subject: Blowhard Son is Both Employed & ENGAGED!
Dear Family & Friends:
1] Last Thursday, Blowhard Son finally landed a full-time legal position at a law firm in the western United States.
2] Blowhard Son had moved there last April to be with his long-time lady friend, Blowhard Fiancee, Esq. Blowhard Fiancee is a California lady...[insert name of prestigious college] undergrad & [insert name of prestigious law school] law. They met while clerking for two different judges some three years ago at [insert name of prestigious legal institution]. At present Blowhard Fiancee is a litigator.
3] Within the past 24 hours, Blowhard Son proposed & I am informed by a reliable source (his sister/my daughter) that Blowhard Fiancee accepted! I am thrilled, happy, and having a 2nd shot of single malt whiskey as I type this! I know NO further details, so don't ask this mushroom for any more detailed, cogent and/or relative details.
I can say that last Thanksgiving, Blowhard Son asked me for my Mother's engagement ring. My Mother's diamond, plus 2 rubies for Blowhard Fiancee's birthstone that Blowhard Son added, form the setting. My parent's[sic] platinum wedding bands were also recycled.
Blowhard Son's e-mail address is: email@example.com
That's all for the nonce.
I was going to pick this letter apart and discuss and dissect each annoying, blowhardian point, but then I was like, really? Do I really have to do that? Doesn't this asscrap speak for itself? Doesn't it stink to high heaven? Aren't you disgusted and chagrined? "2nd shot of single malt whiskey?" "Long-time lady friend"? Capitalizing the "M" in "Mother"? "That's all for the nonce"? Jesus fucking Christ. Let's all rejoice in this festive occasion the way the Romans would have and we can all throw up on each other.
For the nonce.
Saturday, January 29, 2011
The mere fact that this faux advice column exists proves that I have the emotional maturity of a seventh grader. Why do I take pleasure in bashing and demoralizing innocent dunderdoos who have lost their way to the point where they need advice and counsel from random, alleged authority figures?
God, I must have gotten beat up a lot as a kid.
But that don't matter now. 'Cuz I've got the power. I've got the blog. I've got 'em by the short-n-curlies (on me, those are most commonly known as nose hairs) at...
You advised "Susan in Southern Oregon" (Dec. 1), who asked about the appropriateness of giving alcohol as a gift at an office party, that "the only time that alcohol would be an inappropriate gift is when the giver knows the recipient doesn't use it." As a former psychiatric social worker, I would say that the only time alcohol would be an appropriate gift is when the giver knows the recipient would use it, and do so responsibly.
People aren't always forthcoming about their views and experiences regarding alcohol, so it's best to play it safe. Many people abstain from alcohol because they are recovering alcoholics or have seen the devastating results that alcoholism has had on a loved one's life. Others have religious reasons for not imbibing.
Giving alcohol as a gift may not only dismay the recipient, it could also lead to worse results if the giftee is someone who is struggling to stay sober. -- AMY IN DOVER, DEL.
You stupid cunt-flake. I most certainly did not advise that cum-burping hoebag skeezapleaza Susan in Southern Oregon to bring alcohol as a gift for an office party. You clearly misread my reply, and, just for that, I am going to singlehandedly hunt down every single "Amy" in the Dover area, break into each one of their bedrooms at night and watch them sleep. I'll grow out my moustache and stand real close to the bed, too, because that's extra creepy.
I absolutely do NOT advise bringing alcohol as a host gift to ANY party, ESPECIALLY if the host directs you to do so. It's so lame, so... expected. I'm always in favor of bringing a severed animal head-- something small and semi-exotic, like a ferret or a marmoset. If the whole head seems too gross for you, its hind legs will do nicely. If you have time, wrap them together with a gaily-hued grosgrain ribbon for added effect.
I have an issue that has me concerned, and I need some expertise. I have a problem with anger. I don't know what triggers it. It happens out of the blue sometimes.
I have never struck out in anger toward another person, but people have witnessed my outbursts and seemed taken aback by the behavior. The instances occur every month or two.
I'm a nice guy. I would bend over backward to help someone if I could. My verbal explosions contradict who I am inside. Do you have any suggestions on what I can do to control my temper in these situations? -- HOTHEAD IN NEW JERSEY
Have you ever tried masturbating? It's a relatively easy to accomplish, enjoyable, and low-energy method of relaxation that has been widely praised for its anger-ameliorating properties by scientists and masturbators the world over. I'm doing it right now, in fact, and I've never been more at peace with the world. Try doing it whilst sucking down a big, fat doobie for maximum anger management properties. And, for extra impact, if you have time, wrap your balls together with a gaily-hued grosgrain ribbon for added effect.
So often I read about troubled marriages in your column. May I share with you something that my husband and I started doing that has transformed what I thought was a good marriage into a blissful one?
One day, after complaining that we had no quality time together -- we rarely talked, much less made love -- my husband suggested we turn off the television and offered to give me a massage.
Ever since, four or five times a week, once the children are in bed, we go into our bedroom, take off our clothes and give each other long massages. Sometimes we spend the entire time in conversation, other times we savor the peace and quiet. Sometimes we make passionate love; other times we fall asleep naked in each other's arms, completely content.
It doesn't matter how it turns out; it's wonderful and it has made the rest of our lives less stressful and more enjoyable. Our sex life is better than before the children came, and we sleep in the nude more often.
I hope you'll print this. More marriages would take a turn for the better if couples made time for each other and discovered the wonders of massage. -- HAPPIER THAN EVER
DEAR HAPPIER THAN EVER:
See? What'd I tell you, Hothead?! Not seven minutes have gone by, and I'm already masturbating again! I can't even remember what I was angry about.
Oh, right-- the fucking snow.
Now where the hell are those Kleenex?
How do you tell someone how well you can do something without sounding like you're bragging? -- STELLA IN DALLAS
I don't know, man. But, I'll tell you what, you sure came to the right place to ask THAT question, because there's nobody who gives advice like your old Dear Apron, n'yah mean? I mean-- look, I've seen it all, done it all, known it all, and I'm more than happy to toss off a few lines of wisdom, you know-- cast a few pearls before you swine out there in Bloggyland because, really, if you think about it-- who would I be if I kept all this fantastic, earthy, rich, beatific advice to myself? I'd be a darn selfish sonofabee, that's who I'd be, and we all know that's not who I am. I'm warm. Can you feel that warmth, Stella, radiating through your computer monitor? Or maybe you have a laptop. Can you feel me warming your nether regions, that pulsing, comforting heat just pooling over your female parts? That's the warmth of inspiration. That's the glow of the lessons of the aged, packed into the young, lithe, firm body of a 30-year-old intellectual powerhouse who is working for good, Stella. Working for your good. Do you want me to make you feel GOOD, Stella? Mmmmm.... make me feel good! MAKE ME FEEL GOOD! RrrRRrrrRrRRrrrr!
Now, seriously-- where the fuck are those Kleenex?
Friday, January 28, 2011
For eons, that's probably the biggest fear mankind could muster about birds. I mean, besides prehistoric, pointy-teeth birds that weighed more than oil tankers, most modern birds are, well, kind of funny looking. Kind of innocuous.
Kind of, well, dumb.
But even dumb birds have poodie-holes, n'est-ce pas? And that's the thing I've always feared most about birds-- that they were going to zero in on some lumbering, gimpy-assed schlep like me and, well, shit on me. And then, one day in June of 2010, it happened. And now I don't fear that happening anymore because, like, it's not going to happen twice. Not to me. Come on. No way.
These days, the major avian phenomenon that we have to contend with is mass bird death. As you've heard of, and as I've blogged about, roving bands of white supremacist birds have assassinated scores of black birds in the Deep South.
Ironically, it was a case of mass birdie demise that inspired Alfred Hitchcock to create his 1963 film, "The Birds." In 1961, a small town in California experienced a massive die-off of Sooty Shearweathers, the streets absolutely littered with carcasses. According to the local paper, Hitchcock called and asked for articles about the event for research "for his latest thriller." A thriller my wife and I watched with my sister-in-law and her boyfriend in Pittsburgh this weekend.
I admit, I'm not up on my Hitchcock. And by "not up on my Hitchcock" I mean that I have never seen a Hitchcock movie. I know. You can scream and squeal and make weird birdie noises at the computer monitor. It doesn't matter-- I can't see you. Not even when you take off your tank top or whatever.
So, I am really at a loss to explain the dearth of Hitchcockery from my life. I guess I just don't like being scared-- that must really be what it is. It's funny, because I work in a locked psychiatric hospital-- with people who have raped others, with people who have burned down houses-- with people inside them-- I work in a scary place. I've seen and done scary things. And yet, I don't like being scared, as many do. I've never been to a horror movie. I refuse to pay money to have some director and a special effects team and an eerie soundtrack scare the shit out of me. I like my shit on the inside, thank you.
Standing in front of the rather imposing video collection of my sister-in-law's boyfriend was a little nostalgia-inducing. I remembered when I spent nearly every penny I earned on movies, and I longed for the days when I could easily blow $50.00 on some of my favorite films. Having them. Owning them. Placing them on a shelf to gaze upon them. All those colors. All those vertically-opposed letters.
I admit that I was slightly crestfallen when my wife decided that we ought to watch a Hitchcock film. Dude had this extremely impressive-looking box-set of them. There are precious few film creations that I give enough of a deuce about to buy something like that:
The Pink Panther series
Wes Anderson's films (he had all of them-- props)
Homicide: Life on the Street
Monty Python's Flying Circus
So, I realized that my sister-in-law's boyfriend was pretty dead-ass serious about Alfred Hitchcock. He was elucidating factoids about Hitchcock, the film, and the film's impossibly-coiffed starlet, Tippi Hedren. Because I like my sister-in-law's boyfriend, I wanted to like "The Birds."
I mean, I was disturbed, which is probably what Alfred Hitchcock was going for. Which is nice for him. I mean, I don't know how especially one likes a film where thousands of birds are pecking out peoples' eyes and mercilessly dive-bombing into awkward, overdressed schoolchildren. But I'm sure some people managed to like it. I mean, look-- maybe I'm an ignoramus. It's distinctly possible. Just because I use big words like "ignoramus" and "distinctly" doesn't mean anything.
It was interesting to me to think that "The Birds" was the "Saw IV" of its day-- that men in skinny ties escorted chicks in pencil skirts to get their heart rates up. This is how we used to get scared. Now, we make movies about hot sluts in nearly invisible clothing getting together at some lake cabin to fuck each other and then they get their skin eaten off by some homicidal cabana boy's ghost or whatever.
As you can tell, I don't watch horror movies.
I suppose it's important to see films like that, even if you don't like them, to increase your cultural lexicon. Earlier last week, I increased my wife's cultural lexicon by subjecting her to "The Great Outdoors," the fantastic John Candy/Dan Aykroyd film that taught us all what hotdogs are really made of.
And there were no birds, attacking or otherwise, featured in that film. Just a bat that adhered itself to John Candy's face, a bunch of trash-loving (and trash-talking) raccoons, and one bald-headed, bare-assed motherfucking bear.
Yakkity-yak: don't talk back... or the birds'll get ya.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Right now, as a telephonic device, I am utilizing my father's four-year-old Motorola Q. It is a rather large, rectangular object, and it has an auxiliary battery, which makes it weigh approximately thirty-eight pounds. I like it because it has a full QWERTY keyboard. Though the Q sticks, so it's more like a WERTY keyboard (I know-- so clever, right?) and, since the exclamation point is on the same key as the Q, writing exclamatory statements is challenging, because, in order for the q or the Q or the exlcamation point to show up in a text message, you really have to lay into that key like a corporate businessman lays into a Taiwanese prostitute.
You know-- anally.
In any event, somehow the AT&T uberlords have decreed that I am eligible for an upgrade on March 1, 2011. I am supremely soaked with sexcitement.
Even if the Q (and now the A) key wasn't sticking, I'm just a restless kind of guy when it comes to phones and cars. I can't stay nailed down (although my wife swears that, if I ever try to get rid of the Volvo, she will get behind the wheel and run over my neck with it-- which, in a way, is fair) to one device. I will say, the daunting nature of switching cellphones-- learning where all the new icons and doodads are-- not to mention recording all of the Gilbert & Sullivan ring-tones from my stereo (I have eighteen individually assigned G&S ringtones for really special people on my contact list, and the default ring is the overture to "H.M.S. Pinafore." Go ahead, call me gay in the comment section. I don't care) is something that I have to painstakingly redo every time I get a new phone because the recorded audio files never seem to transfer over, even though they're probably somewhere in the ether of my SIM card.
That won't stop me. I love getting a new phone.
Because I'm sick.
Because this world is sick.
Because they're always coming out with supercool shit that they make us horny for.
I love toys.
Give me toys.
Don't give me an iPhone.
I don't want it.
I don't want a Droid.
I don't want a Samsung Solstice.
I don't want any touchy, scrolly thing.
BECAUSE. I. AM. A. MAN. GODDAMNIT.
And men love buttons.
We LOVE TO PUSH THINGS!
We love pressing. We love the tactility. We love bumpy, round things.
Getting sexual for anyone else around here? I've got to tell you, I'm getting silly in the trousers.
I know. You didn't need to know that. Well, you know. Deal.
Buttons are like little, methodically arranged booblettes. Little nubbly nipply nobbly things. I can't get enough of them. If, one day, they make cell phones that are touch-screen only-- well, I'm just going to have to keep buying old ones. Because I loves me my buttons.
We could really get all psychosexual here, but I think it's enough to say HOORAY FOR BUTTONS and call it a day.
And, speaking of calling-- I wonder what G&S tune will play the next time you call me!
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
"Holy God, holy mighty, holy immortal, have mercy on us."
And so Russell Timoshenko, age 23, was laid to rest, with 10,000 in attendance to grieve the loss. And I wonder how many of those mourners wondered, as they climbed back into their patrol cars for the long drive back to their home precincts or their home states or their homelands, if war had silently been declared on their kind.
So far this year, fourteen police officers have died in the line of duty-- nine of them have been shot to death, and two incidents, both in Florida, resulted in the deaths of two police officers from the same department. Safety in numbers is often just an illusion, as is sickeningly demonstrated in this photograph below.
Oakland, California. There is no safety in numbers-- not in the game of cops n' robbers. And I think about how many of the thousands of mourners in Oakland wondered, as they filed into this stadium in March of 2009, wondered if it was war that was being waged against them in the streets.
Cop-killing is nothing new in America. It's been around since 1792, when a sheriff's deputy in New York was attempting to effect and arrest, and the suspect shot him through a closed door. Statistically speaking, a law enforcement officer falls or is felled in this country every 52 hours. That's an average, and there is no law to this average. There are spates, and spikes, and ebbs and flows. Random or premeditated, there is no way to predict or be sure. They say that Christmas Day is an exceedingly dangerous day to be a police officer in America-- but, in 2010, only one police officer died on December the 25th. He had a heart attack while struggling with an intoxicated 16-year-old female. Nothing to do with Christmas-- just happened to be that call on that day that brought those two people together in Uvalde County, Texas.
I bristle just a little bit when I read stories run by the Associated Press or Reuters or whomever it is questioning whether or not a "war is being waged" on police officers in America because a few pathetic, cowardly motherfuckers have decided to get themselves out of whatever trouble they're in by cutting down a cop or two. As I've said before on this blog, there was only ever one "war against the police" in this country, and it was bloody, and it was real, and it was organized. The Black Liberation Army, a violent off-shoot of the Black Panthers waged a campaign to execute random police officers from New York to California and many places in between from the late 1960s to the early 1980s, resulting in the deaths of dozens of officers and the wounding/maiming of many more.
What is happening now in this country? It's deplorable. It's sad. But it is not war.
As human beings with an often imperfect grasp on what is happening around us, we fear what we do not understand, and that's understandable. To call a few cop-killings that just happen to be clustered together during the month of January "war" is a knee-jerk, it is irresponsible and sensational journalism (at best), and it is, to my way of thinking, disrespectful to the memory of the police officers who died. Call it a tragedy. Call it the shame of the nation. Call it sad, because it is. But don't call it war. Or, if you want to call it war, fine-- but then every police officer who is murdered by a felon trying to flee in the night was a war hero, because this war, if that's what it is, has been raging since 1792 and, as long as there are armed shitheads who don't want to go (usually back) to jail, then police officers are going to die.
And we will continue to say, numbed and hurt and lost, "Holy God, holy mighty, holy immortal, have mercy on us."Have mercy on us.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
"If it's not in an envelope addressed to either me or my wife, or both, it invariably gets thrown in the recycling bin."
This policy bodes rather ill for the following items of mail:
* Junk Mail Addresesd to "Current Resident" (Mr. Resident don't live here no more and he can go fuck himself anyway)
* Alumni Horseshit
* Fabric Store Circulars (if I throw these away before Mrs. Apron gets to see them, I risk falling asleep as a little red laser light finds its way between my eyes)
* "Come Pray With Us" ads for local churches
* Catalogs (I hang onto the Vicky's Secret ones for nostalgia)
They say you don't start caring about coupons until you have at least two children. I don't know if there's any hope for me. I lack the attention-to-detail, the patience, the energy and the overall competency to deal with coupons. They require a complex skill set that I just do not possess, and I hardly think that facilitating the squirting out of two kids is going to annoint me with that skill-set that includes the ability to assimilate the knowledge of what goods go with what supermarket/drug store, what goods we are in need of and/or are projected to need prior to the expiration date of the coupon, a reliable place to store the coupons, the ability to utilize scissors without risking a puncture wound, the cognitive ability to remember that one has a coupon for a particular item, go obtain the coupon, place the coupon in a pocket, bring the coupon into the store, select the correct item that corresponds to the coupon in your pocket, and pulling the coupon out of the pocket and presenting it to the cashier while at the check-out lane.
You practically have to be Baruch Spinoza to be able to accomplish that feat. Or at least Ron Jeremy.
It took my father three children, and then about twenty-five more years, to become utterly enamored with coupons. I don't know exactly how it happened, but, one day, I came home and washed my hands in the kitchen sink (some mothers go absolutely bananafuck when you do that) and I happened to glance at the little shelf above their sink-- littered with coupons. It looked like a newspaper supplement had exploded in the kitchen. Coupons for Tylenol Gel-Caps and Vitamin-E and V-8 Juice and grapes and Lemon Joy. It was amazing. They were categorized and piled according to their corresponding retail establishment. It was disturbing.
Sometimes, my father will call me on the phone, like a stockbroker with a hot tip too good to pass up.
"Mummy-- do you eat at Applebees? There is coupon here-- $5.00 off a whole meal!"
A pointed, offended silence inevitably follows before I say something like,
"I am going to hang up the phone now before someone gets hurt."
I don't mean to be insensitive. I know he's just a man who loves his son, and loves his coupons, and wants the two to commune in festive, Jewish, money savingness on common ground. But, at Applebees, ne'er the two shall meet.
My wife enjoys eyeballing the coupon circulars that come to our house and, on the days when she gets home from work before me, she is able to do so. Otherwise, the circulars are shoved into the recycling bin. I know-- it's like throwing away money. But, on Sunday, on our way back from a brief sojourn to Pittsburgh, Mrs. Apron and I got into a huge fight that was precipitated by the existence of a seemingly innocuous McDonald's coupon at her sister's apartment. See? It is possible for coupons to visit upon us untold amounts of unhappiness.
Unless, of course, they're coupons like THIS ONE:
Behold: the healing power of the Copper Magnetic Jesus Bracelet. Thing.
The mere existence of an item like this, you would think, would be enough for me to abandon my reckless, everything-must-go-in-the-bin mentality, but we know I don't change so easily. Not even Jesus with his supercool magnets and wristwear can change me.
Try as he might.
I must say, for $9.97*, (*plus shipping & handling from Heaven) you're getting quite a sweet deal. You get the healing power of Jesus, the penetrating power of magnets, and the soothing power of copper.
That's a lot of power for the money-- and a lot of different kinds of power, too!-- though I'm not sure the average Christian will very much fancy seeing the words "Jesus" and "penetrating" so close together.
I have to confess-- I did, mostly for your edification (I hope you're happy) visit http://www.dreamproductscatalog.com/ to see what other Jesus-related offerings they had to peddle. I admit I was very surprised by what I found on this site.
While I didn't go poking around on the website too too much, the homepage has some of their "Favorite Products." Whose favorites they are and what these people eat out of which garbage cans, I couldn't say for sure, but some of the Favorite Products were:
Cardigan Slipper Socks (only $12.97)
Talking Teaching Teddy (not to be confused with Teddy Ruxpin or Alan Greenspan)
Zip-Up Security I.D. Case (looks suspiciously like "a wallet")
and, my favorite,
The Sleep Bra
"Our Sleep Bra is the most comfortable bra on the planet. It shapes, lifts and supports in a way no other bra can. Its silky, soft fabric stretches to fit any cup size from A to DD, AND it conforms to changes in your body maintaining a perfect fit any time of the month. So comfortable you can even sleep in it. Fashion nylon/spandex import. Available in even sizes 34 through 52."
Knowing that breasts change as the weeks go by in a given month is something that I find funny, which just reinforces the fact that I am emotionally twelve years old. I would also like to go on record by saying how disappointed I was that the aforementioned products on this website had nothing, apparently, to do with Jesus. I would probably pay a hell of a lot more than $9.97 for a Jesus Copper Magnetic Sleep Bra.
Dream Products: take note.
Monday, January 24, 2011
If you happen to be married to yours, that is.
I try not to forget how lucky I am to be married to my best friend, and to know that. I call her "Buddy" and "Partner" as often as I call her "Wifey-doo" because, to me, she is just as much a partner and a buddy as she is a wife. And I get to have sleepovers with her all the fricking time.
When we're particularly wired at night and we complain that we can't fall asleep, we announce, "Slumbie Partie!" and we stay up until we're completely batty, joking around with each other in bed, saying stupid shit that wouldn't be funny if the sun were out, and generally being gay. Good old sleepovers.
I miss sleepovers.
Remember your sleepovers? They were probably awesome. Mine were. Well, the ones I went to were. I only had one (count 'em, ONE) genuine sleepover "party" at my house where there was more than just me and one other person. We slept in the basement, which, looking back on it, I cannot believe my mother permitted, as the basement in my parents' house is basically unfinished, with shuffle-board embedded in the floor tile. Sleepovers with just one friend were more frequent, but still sporadic and marginally successful.
Sleepovers at friends' houses were better. Finished basements, relaxed rules and regs, lots of food of dubious nutritional value, attractive mothers, enormous televisions, and CINEMAX.
Can you say, "First Porn Ever"? I can.
I remember one sleepover where my friend's older brother recounted the story of how he got arrested for attempting to steal condoms at a local Rite-Aid because he was too chickenshit to bring them up to the counter to pay for them. That fucking moron is a doctor now.
At another sleepover, another friend of ours confessed that he got an erection while his elderly male physician was giving him the old turn-your-head-and-cough hernia test.
"Ooops," my friend said the doctor remarked, "it happens!"
Sidebar: "Ooops, it happens!" is exactly what a urologist told me, many years later after removing his gloved hand from my anus during a check of my pancreas when some poodie came out. If there was a gun anywhere in that zipcode, I would have found it and shot myself.
I can remember another sleepover where I went upstairs to the kitchen to get a glass of water and found my friend's younger sister, who must have been around seven years old at the time, seated at the kitchen counter on a stool consuming sour cream, right out of the container, with a gigantic wooden spoon. I almost threw up on her head. I mean, sour cream at two o'clock in the morning?
Ooops, it happens!
Sometimes, I want to have sleepovers again-- not just with my wife, with other people. And I'm not talking about orgies or cheating. I just mean staying up all night with people-- getting giddy and weird and very inappropriate and baring your soul and knowing things about others they'd never tell you with the lights on, talking about who was hot in high school, sharing memories and never-known facts or stories. I love stories-- especially at night. Not campfire stories, or war stories-- just stories. That's probably why I love folk ballads so much-- because they're just stories, with a couple innocuous chords.
I think, when foreign leaders visit the White House, they should be offered a sleepover with the President. Can you imagine Hu Jintao, on the floor of the Lincoln Bedroom, in a polyester sleeping bag, swapping stories with Obama at 3:30 in the morning in the whispering darkness?
God. How awesome would that be?
I wish I'd had more sleepovers as a kid. It's something you never know you're going to miss until it's gone. But thank God I have my buddy to get silly with beneath flannel, made safe and sound by the warmth of the dogs.
Sunday, January 23, 2011
My adult son passed away nine months ago. I am mostly numb. My home has always been welcoming, and I have had friends and family here constantly -- but now they won't leave! They don't seem to "get" the fact that I need some time to be alone.
I love these people, but my heart is broken. The only person I want to see and spend time with is my surviving son. I have lost my enthusiasm for almost everything. I work full time and no longer want to be the "hostess." I am tired. My sons and I were close, and I raised them by myself.
How do I tell my friends and family members that I need to be alone without offending them? I want to do the right thing. -- HEARTBROKEN IN CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS
I don't get it. These friends and family members of yours are living in your house? What do they think they've got-- Squatters' Rights? Man, you need to call Sheriff John Brown and have these motherfuckers evicted! And tased!
This is outrageous-- first they kill your son and then they try to move into his bedroom, break his model airplanes and eat his Cheetos and shit? God-- that. is. fucked. UP!
My 12-year-old daughter, "Sophia," repeatedly shirks her basic responsibilities. She routinely receives detention for not completing homework assignments and for failing to bring required materials to class. Despite my concern, Sophia continues with her usual shortcomings. This is causing a great deal of stress between us, and our relationship is now very poor. Should I keep pushing her or should I just allow her to fail? -- DISAPPOINTED MOM IN LOUISIANA
DEAR DISAPPOINTED MOM:
"Should I keep pushing her or should I just allow her to fail?"
Well, kudos for you for asking a question most people are far too intelligent to ask. Standards really must be different in Louisiana. And I think that's not necessarily a bad thing.
Certainly I think you ought to explore failure for your daughter. It seems to be what she is most interested in/geared towards, and I think that's generally where her aptitude lies. Something people who don't live in Louisiana often forget is that you can actually be a success, at failure! I say, encourage your daughter to embrace failure-- that way, you won't be perceived as one of those annoying, pushy, aggressive helicopter parents, like the kind we have up North.
Of course, if she fails at failure, there's always Hitler Youth. If you sell enough cookies, you get patches and moustaches and shit.
My husband and I have been arguing about his leaving the lights on throughout our house. He's convinced that it adds little to our electric bill, but it bothers me that every single light is left burning. I realize there is a cost difference between incandescent and fluorescent lighting, but leaving all the lights on seems unnecessary and wasteful to me. Could you please "shed some light" on our argument? -- LIT UP IN JOHNSON CITY, TENN.
DEAR LIT UP:
OH! OHHH!!!! I get it! "Shed some light" because it's a LETTER about LIGHTS written by an ASSHOLE! HAHAHAHAA! That's FUNNY!
Good one, asshole.
I am a fairly conservative young woman, and also somewhat shy. I have been dating a young man who comes from a much more casual culture than I do. This has its benefits -- he laughs often and deeply, and easily connects with people. But it also has its downside.
"Mac" has a terrible habit of talking publicly about what we do in the bedroom. He means it in a teasing way, and he's never insulting. He can't understand why it upsets me, although he is always remorseful when he realizes I'm angry. He worries that I'm ashamed of him and what we do, but I'm not. I just don't want it to be a topic of public discussion, especially with people from my church. I find it embarrassing to have my love life made public.
Mac is never mean-spirited, only vulgar, which to him is acceptable. I love him. He's a strong, kind and generous man. But I do not feel respected. The truth is, he just doesn't know how to treat me with respect. What can I do? -- WOMAN OF CHARACTER
DEAR WOMAN OF CHARACTER WHO OBVIOUSLY SQUIRTS AND WEARS A VINYL FACEMASK AND A STRAP-ON UNICORN HORN ATTACHED TO HER MONS PUBIS:
Mac told me all about you in a different letter, and he included pictures. I jerked off on them.
Is that wrong?
Saturday, January 22, 2011
Changing my mind is even more of an ordeal.
A long time ago, I was an ardent proponent of capital punishment. It seemed logical to me: take a life, lose yours. Pretty simple.
Well, life just isn't so, and the only thing more complicated than life is death.
It took me a long time to come around, but I eventually did. Well, sort of. You certainly won't see me taking to the streets with a poster of some murderer's face yelling for him/her to be freed, brick by brick. And you won't see me calling for the abolition of the death penalty either.
Maybe I should be, if it's really something I don't believe in anymore, but I guess I'm just too fat and lazy.
Well, I'm lazy.
See, I say that I've come around "sort of" because I believe that, while the death penalty is on the books, it ought to be used. I do not believe in convicted murderers languishing on death row for twenty-five years (or more) while they literally shit out appeals. As far as post-conviction relief appeal hearings, I'm a fan of the "One and Done" philosophy. Oh, can't prove your innocence after one goodhearted appeal?
Sorry. Thanks for playing.
Of course, I won't be shaking my head in despair when the death penalty, imperfect and blemished as it is, finally gets put to death itself once and for all in this country. That will be okay with me. The idea of your average, run-of-the-mill shitfuck wasting away in a prison cell for the remainder of his or her natural life is just fine. Having been inside prisons as an EMT, I can state that the idea of being in inmate in a prison for the rest of my life would make me wish for capital punishment to come quickly to me. Yeah, sometimes I think an early termination of life is too good for them.
And then the news comes on, and I can feel my mind going to the other side...
The piece of shit who put a bullet into Congresswoman Gifford's head, who slaughtered and wounded so many on that arid Tuscon day-- the man who turned a supermarket parking lot into a bloodbath. The motherfucker whose name I can't even bear to write out.
The piece of shit who ended the promising life of Lakewood, New Jersey Police Officer Christopher Matlosz. Matlosz pulled his cruiser up next to this bastard and, as they talked, the suspect pulled out a handgun, stepped back, and fired into Matlosz three times. This brave officer, dead at 27, was buried on Thursday. And all his fiancee got was his hat.
And, closer to my home, we've got the piece of shit abortion doctor. I want to throw up every time I think about him, about his filthy exam room, about the fifteen-year-old he had working for him, administering narcotics and anesthetics, about how he cut the spinal cords of viable, alive babies with a pair of scissors after they were delivered. About how he killed a mother, a poor woman, desperate for even the help of a charlatan, how he killed her through his negligence, his greed, and his ineptitude. Murderer. Ungodly, horrible, corrupt murderer.
I don't shock easily, friends, but this has been a rough couple weeks.
Why shouldn't we, as a society, kill this man? Why shouldn't we kill any of the aforementioned sonsofbitches? What are we proving by a stance of supposed morality? That we are better than them because we will gallantly spare their lives? Because we do not kill assassains or cop-killers or abortion butchers?
Well, go, us.
Where is the higher ground when we are confronted with such atrocities? And, even if we should find it, why bother to climb to its peak? Why? Who benefits from sparing such lives?
And, of course, I suppose I have to just ask myself, as I struggle with my own petty, internal grief, who benefits from taking theirs?
Friday, January 21, 2011
Instead of spending obscene amounts of money at Starbucks and Starbucks-like establishment, staring aimlessly at baristabreast, flitting away profane amounts of money on hot, brown, liquid, mood-stabilizing narcotic, I make my coffee at home. The days when I work 7a-3p, the coffee-maker is auto-programmed to start doing its caffeinated thing at 5:16am. 8a-4p, it goes makey-makey at 6:16am.
Why 6:16 and not 6:15? Because I'm weird. Because I have this fear that, if I do things on the hour, or half-hour, or quarter-hour, that I'll be just another boring simpleton.
Seriously. I have problems. Join me in the happy place known as Sicktitude. I meet you there at 12:07. Let's do lunch.
Speaking of lunch, I make that the night before work, too. Well, most days I do. I hate making my lunch. It's boring, monotonous, laborious, mundane, and it makes me feel like Dilbert or Charlie Brown, or their fuckchild offspring.
The accoutrements don't bother me. The trappings. The two clementines. The cheese-stick. The salty, the sweet. The carrot sticks and ranch lube. The Caffeine Free Diet Coke. I don't mind throwing all that shit into my bag. I like it, actually-- the comforting regularity of my lunchtime accessories. When clementines go out of season, I typically ponder donning a black armband for a month.
The problem I have with making my lunch is the "main course," as it were.
I cannot stand making sandwiches. Just thinking about it makes me want to pull out all my pubes and use them to weave a hammock for a gerbil.
In reality, I know it's not a big deal. Because I make the world's most boring sandwiches, it's even less of a big deal than it would be if I utilized things like onions, flavored mayonnaise, lettuce, tomato, and whatever else sophisticated people put on sandwiches. I don't know-- watercress? Pistachio crumbles? Fig Newton slices?
I have no idea. I am not sophisticated. I have hairy knees. I am a human enema. I hate making sandwiches.
I just... I don't know. It's ridiculous. All I use is bread, some sliced-up, processed, caramel-colored meat sliver, sliced-up, processed, yellow-colored cheese sliver, and some sort of lubricant-- usually ranch dressing. Sometimes, I'll get the aforementioned four ingredients out of the refrigerator with a lot of huffing and/or puffing and I'll look at my wife in despair and say,
"I just can't."
And, sometimes, I really just can't. I'll throw the clementines and the cheese stick and the carrots and the sweet and the salty and the CFDC into the bag and I'll stop on the way to work for a wrap (I know, that's so DIFFERENT than a fucking sandwich, right?) or some other horseshit. Or, on the less fortunate days, I will just eat the aforementioned supplements with no "main." Because I am a pathetic, hairy-kneed sonofafuck.
If I could resurrect one person from the dead, I think it would be John Montagu, the Fourth Earl of Sandwich-- the stocking-footed gentleman who is generally credited with inventing the sandwich. I'd like to roust him from his dusty slumber, pull him by his periwig into my kitchen and have him look at my bread, my fake-ass meat and cheese and my dressing and ask him if he is proud of what he did for us miserable schleps.
And then, after he'd answer, no doubt with Benjamin Franklin-like pride in his earth-changing invention, I'd say, "Good. Then make my fucking lunch, you goofy little bitch."
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Remember that terrible movie?
Well, forget about it.
May 21st is the new D-Day. At least, that's what they say.
Well, that's what he says.
According to radio evangelist Harold Camping, May 21st, 2011 is when the world is going to end. Of course, from the looks of him, that may very well be the end of his world, not ours. I'm not even sure he'll make it that long. I do kind of dig his sideburns, though.
Camping asserts that, on May 21st, 2011, "this world will be a horror story beyond anything we can imagine." I don't know if Harold Camping has been unable to open his eyes for the last 89 years of his life, or if he just had them closed for that photograph, but isn't that kind of where we've been for a long time?
Fella: this world IS a horror story beyond anything we can imagine, and it has been since "The Carol Burnett Show" went off the air.
I suppose the world is going to end some day. I don't necessarily believe it's going to be a religious event, but, if it is and Jesus comes back here, he's going to be disappointed.
"What? You couldn't even be bothered to clean up your fucking room?"
My room is not clean, and it will not be so on May 21st, I can promise you that-- spring cleaning be damned. Not only will my room will not be clean; it will not be clean enough for Jesus. Can your room ever be clean enough for Jesus? Christ-- my bedroom is a goddamned mess. You should see the top of my bureau. There are, like, four old wristwatches on there and a bunch of papers and gloves and shit. And a big book about Sondheim. Jesus is going to look at all that shit and he's going to think I'm some kind of hoarding homosexual with four arms.
And he's going to vaporize my sorry, bony ass.
Not because I'm Jewish-- but because I'm a fucking, holy-rollin' mess.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
"On January 25, we'll be publishing a secret novel simply titled O, about President Obama's campaign for re-election in 2012. The author of the novel wishes to remain anonymous. You may be asked to comment on whether or not you are the author. If so, it would be great if you refrained from commenting, in solidarity with the principle that a book should be judged on its content and not on the perceived ideology of its author.
The author, an individual with integrity and talent, is someone who has been in the room with Barack Obama and knows the political world intimately. In fact, you may know this person, or know of this person -- if you are not in fact the author yourself.
Thanks in advance for your consideration. I apologize for the impersonality of this blind group email, but this seems like the best way to protect the author's identity. I hope you enjoy the book. It's terrific.
For a sneak preview of O and a special video address from the President of the United States, go to www.othebook.com
Publisher, Simon & Schuster"
Gosh, I so wanted to keep it a secret for just a little while longer, but I just couldn't help myself, you know? It's like, when you get a really good present for somebody, but their birthday isn't, like, for another four months, and you are just going to die outta piss if you don't give it to the person early? You know what I mean? Like, okay-- on Monday, my wife was in a thrift shop and saw this super-fun, vintagey, 1960s-era mod-like lamp with a base made entirely out of cork, and she told me all about it. So, what did I do on Tuesday? I bought the fucking thing and, because it's cork and all, I thumb-tacked a love note to it so she'd find it when she got home from work.
And it isn't even her BIRTHDAY! It's in OCTOBER! So, like, that's kind of what I felt like after writing "O." Like, I just couldn't stand it anymore. I HAD to tell someone! So, I chose you. Because you're my blogdience, and I think you're hot and attentive and everything.
I thought you should know the truth. From me.
I always knew I wanted to write a book called "O," ever since I was old enough to realize that "O" was my third favorite letter, after "Q" and "9." I didn't know what the hell the book was going to be about-- but I had my title. Some writers choose the title last-- not me. I start with the title, because I'm a man-- like Hemmingway and Ann Coulter. I mean-- look at the title for this blog post:
"Okay, Fine-- You Got Me: I Wrote "O."" Like, does it get any cleverer than that? I'm clever. I deserve that big advance Simon & Schuster gave me. A lifetime paid membership to http://www.indianchicksssxxx.com/ doesn't come cheap.
So, I had my title. "O." Clever, right? And I was all like, "Okay, well, what should the book be about?" And I was thinking I could write a book about Oprah, but I knew right away that this would be way too annoying. Because I'd probably have to talk to her-- and I would never want to do that. Besides, it didn't go so well for Piers Morgan.
What is with that name anyway? Seriously.
Then I was thinking that I could write a book about orgasms. But I was conflicted. While I had a lot to say about orgasms-- and while I knew that the 10 pages of photographs in the middle of the book would be devoted to black-and-white depictions of people making funny "O Faces," and, as a joke, two random pages in the book would be "stuck" together, I just knew that reading, and for that matter writing a book about orgasms could never compare to just having one. And so back to http://www.indianchicksssxxx.com/ I went.
My step-nephew (stephew?) is really into dinosaurs, and, even though he just turned six, I know that, one day, he'll really appreciate a book about Oviraptors. You know, those charming Mongolian theropods. But then I was like, I'm not even related to this kid. So why bother?
Ophiuchus is a pretty bangin' constellation, as constellations go. It's often depicted as a guy with an impossibly small penis grabbing onto a snake, presumably because the snake was making fun of the guy's mini-whang. See below:
I just wasn't sure that lots of people would read the book-- outside of astronomers with micropenis, that is-- and I knew I needed a subject with greater curb appeal-- like a cheerleading team hosting a car wash in the middle of August or a clean needle program run by some scruffy ex-celebrity.
And then it hit me: O.... bama.
BAM. There's the book. There's my money.
I like money.
A final note: Simon & Schuster wants you to judge this book "on its content, not on the perceived ideology of its author." You should totally be doing that with every book, article, blog, website, journal, and post you read.
Because that makes sense. Right?
Because you can rightfully be expected to separate an author from his/her prose. Right?
One day, when books and articles are written by robots or iJournalists, we won't have to worry about pesky, troublesome things like integrity, or lack thereof, impartiality, bias, opinion, or trustworthiness. Until that time of motorized, computerized authorship arrives, just, you know, pretend.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
But it isn't often that people with strange names make big news, mostly because we're generally afraid of people with strange names. Call it xenophobia, or polydipsia, or exotropia, or any other scientific-sounding name, I just call it "lunch."
Speaking of lunch-- I take my lunch hour inside my car. Is that weird?
Anyway, two strangely-named individuals made it into the news recently, both for attaining positions of considerable power and influence, and I found it just bizarre enough to deserve a mention on this humble little sliver of bloggerydom. These guys are both pretty big fucking deals, so, without further delay, let's bring them up to bat and see if we can make these puppies bunt.
1.) REINCE PRIEBUS
This hepcat was elected Chairman of the Republican National Committee after former Chairman Michael Steele was ousted for having an unfortunate moustache. Time was in this country when someone who had a name like "Reince Priebus" couldn't be chairman of anything unless it was a meeting of jawless Hapsburg monarchs in ruffled collars. Actually, he's of Greek and German descent, and was born in Kenya for some reason-- probably because his parents were there or, at least his mother was.
Wikipedia says that he owns five guns, which means that, if you make fun of his name, you'd better learn how to duck or be quick with a "Just fuckin' with ya, Reince." Wikipedia also cites Ronald Reagan and Abraham Lincoln as Reince's two political heroes, and it's funny to me to picture a tea-time get-together with all three of them, especially picturing Reince in one of those ruffled collars.
When I see the name "Reince Priebus" spelled out, I automatically get a mental image in my mind of several scantily-clad sluts soaping up a Toyota Prius. Rinse Prius. Get it? I have a semi right now. I'm sorry. I wanted to not tell you that, but there we are.
I guess the good thing about having a name like "Reince Priebus" is that there's really no way to make fun of it, that I can tell, other than by just saying it. "You're a fucking asshole!" Oh yeah? Well... your name is... REINCE PRIEBUS! SO THERE!" I mean, ouch, right?
The cool thing is, his name has both an "ei" and an "ie" in it. So, I mean-- there's that.
2.) PIERS MORGAN
When Larry King hung up his suspenders (if I hear one more media personality say that, I'm going to strangle myself and at least three random housecats with a pair) for the last time, nobody knew what the fate of his famed cable talkshow would be.
Enter Piers Morgan.
Now, maybe over there in England, it's okay to have a first name that ends in "s" that isn't "James" or "Charles," but, in this country, that's not how we roll.
"Oh, hi. My name is Davids Blank."
"I'm Bartholemews Smith."
"Theodores Johnson here."
"They call me Brians Wilson."
When somebody introduces himself to you and says that his name is Something + s, don't you automatically expect the fucking guy to be a conjoined twin? Like he's going to do a quarter-turn to the right and there's going to be a second Mike or Ted there, waving at you, going, "Hi, I'm Ted also."
And it doesn't help that the guy's name is "Piers." "Pierce" is okay, again, because it's singular. One Pierce. Two Piers? Like Piers 1 and 2 Imports? And now he's going to host a cable television program. Sorry, "programme." He's English, don't you know? They have men there named Beverly.
The thing is-- when your name is "Piers," (unlike "Reince") there's a lot of naughty things that rhyme with it. "Queers" comes immediately to mind. I'll bet English children wearing knickerbocker shorts and knee-socks and little blazers and neckties and beanie caps loved calling him "Rears Morgan" on the rugby pitch. And, when he cried, they probably kicked the shit out of him, deriding poor little "Tears Morgan."
God. What a mess. These silly-assed, very famous names just hurt my ears. Morgan.
Monday, January 17, 2011
I hope that what I do is normal. And, when I'm alone for more than one hour, T.W.B.P.
Yes, that means, "There Will Be Porn."
There will also be blogging, of course which, for me, is like porn. A little bit. I am wearing trousers right now. I swear to God.
Some people say that married men who look at porn are essentially cheating on their wives. I do not subscribe to this rather narrow and puritanical school of thought. If I did, I would be even more overcome with guilt than I already am-- about lots of things. About nothing in particular. I even feel guilty about feeling guilty.
I do not, however, feel guilty about looking at porn.
My wife knows. I am transparent. When the internet history has been cleared, she knows. She jokes with me about it. Thank God we have this kind of relationship, or I would have to be all secretive about it, and I hate secrets. When people tell me secrets, I keep them, but I'm not very enthusiastic about it. In fact, I'm kind of hoping I slip up and say something to someone about the secret, but I never do. Because then I'd feel guilty about it.
And then I'd have to punish myself for that guilt by, you know, looking at some porn.
They say that porn objectifies women. I think it celebrates them. When I see a really good streaming vid online, I sometimes nod my head and make that, "Wow, I'm impressed" face at the monitor which, to me, is akin to pinning a medal on a soldier's wool coat. I mean, these individuals are providing an excellent service. They're going all out. They're taking those money shots and donning their pearl necklaces with pride. And the ones who are really good at what they do (you know who I'm talking about and, if you don't, well, you should) are skilled artisans. And not just the performers, either. The camerapeople, too, are to be credited. I'll never forget the first porno I watched. I was probably twelve or so, and I was at a sleepover at my friend Michael's house, and one of the first shots of the film was taken from behind some hairy dude's ass, at crotch level, while a pair of furry balls slapped mercilessly into this chick's thighs as she was drilled from behind, and the camera couldn't have been more than two inches away from this guy's bouncies. Everyone in the room, ensconsed inside their polyester sleeping bags, was dead silent. I, of course, broke the silence.
"Wow-- can you imagine being that camera guy? What a job!"
I mean, seriously-- people get paid for that. And, even at twelve, that pretty much blew my mind.
Some people dream about sex. I dream about porn. Last night, I had a dream that I was sitting at my computer, watching porn. That's kind of fucked up, don't you think? I dreamt that I was watching this dude lying face-up on a table and this tattooed chick was riding the squirt out of him. I mean, this chick was doing the reverse-cowgirl thing, just absolutely going to town and she was gritting her teeth as she was saying, I guess to the "camera":
"The trick is to pretend like you're enjoying it!"
And, in my dream, hearing this was like some sort of stunning revelation, and the dream-self of me was thinking, "Oh my God-- you mean it's all an act? She's not really enjoying getting drilled like some sort of highway works project? Jeez!"
Who fucking knew.
Sunday, January 16, 2011
Some of you already do, and already have. And I like that, too.
Nicknames are a way that other people let you know that you're accepted, that you're one of them, that, at the very least, they give enough of a shit about you to bother coming up with a nickname for you in the first place. Because, let's face it, coming up with the precise nickname for a person is rather an art form.
Just ask that black dude from "Huckleberry Finn."
In middle school, I wanted a nickname badly. I never got one, at least, I never got one that people shared with me. Sometimes you get what you want-- but, most of the time: you don't. Yes, that is my outlook on life. Want cheer and fluff? Go read some fucking pink-assed mommy blog.
I thought that coming up with a nickname for me, (you know, besides, "Jew"), would be easy because of my impossibly skinny stature.
"Maybe they'll call me 'Beanpole,'" I fantasized, "or 'Broomstick' or 'Stretch.'" In high school, if you can believe it, I wore jeans, pretty much every day. "They'll call me 'Jeans,'" I decided.
They did not.
I did not receive a nickname, in fact, until I became an EMT. True to form, when I pined for something, I didn't get it. Once I got it, I didn't want it. My nickname came from my 300 pound paramedic partner, who spewed such terms as "Sand Nigger," "Jit-bag," and "Cumstain" when talking about Middle Easterners, our supervisor, and his girlfriend's husband, respectively.
He used to call me "H.P." which was a less-than-affectionate nod to my physical resemblance to the world's most famous bespectacled wizard. Once, when it came time to lift a rather portly patient who was strapped to our stretcher, my partner looked up at me as we were crouched at the head and foot of the stretcher and said, "You ready for this, H.P.? Got your wand?" The patient cracked up. I was not amused.
I suppose if I had become a mobster or a rap singer, or, um, a professional football player, or a soldier, or basically any other career for which I am utterly unsuited and unsuitable, I would have received a nickname.
As it is, I am none of those things, and never will be. And so I suppose I am going to have to let the nickname be another unrequited dream of mine, that I'll put up there on the shelf with policing and becoming a professional writer, watching Indian girls shower each other, and participating in Wing Bowl.
And that's okay. Because you can always call me, "Apron."
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Ever feel like, I don't know, taking one... with me....?
Oh, yeah... soap up my bony kneecaps. You know you like that shit.
Know how I know you like that shit?
'Cuz you're a supa-freak. And 'cuz you like...
A former student asked me to write a character reference to help her land a teaching job abroad. I agreed, since I thought highly of her potential as a teacher and scholar, and her level of character. However, after she was placed in the classroom, the ministry of education of the nation where she was to teach discovered some inappropriate posting on her social networking site.
Because I had written the recommendation, they contacted me asking if they had a problem and provided me with copies of what they had found. Her posting detailed a history of forging fake IDs to buy alcohol while underage, numerous episodes of binge drinking in high school and college, her marijuana use and several exhibitionistic stunts and sexual activities that I won't mention. I was shocked. None of this matched the person I thought I knew.
This situation has so shaken my trust in the character and judgment of the 20-something crowd that I'm now reluctant to write recommendations for any of my students. What do you think I should have done? I'm concerned that too many of these young people, however intelligent, lack integrity, character, judgment and common sense. -- HEARTBROKEN TEACHER, OAKLAND, CALIF.
DEAR HEARTBROKEN TEACHER:
"Several exhibitionistic stunts and sexual activities that I won't mention"???
Oh, come on, Teach! Stop being such a fucking dick-tease! I want at least ten photos and two streaming vids or I'm just not going to treat your letter seriously at all.
Here's the thing: 20-somethings don't have integrity, character, and/or common sense. These traits were breeded out several decades ago when 20-somethings started thinking loud Glen Check patterns and polyester suits were cool. Straight up: if you want to know if the dumbass you're writing a recommendation for is a cumwhore or a Johnny Tokesalot, Google them or friend them on Facebook. If you write something extolling their virtues before doing that, then you're a pale-assed idiot who deserves whatever you get.
By the way, don't Google me or recommend me for anything other than a hog-tied spanking with an apple in my mouth.
My wife went on a diet a year ago and lost a tremendous amount of weight. The problem now is she won't quit. Every time I suggest she stop and put a few pounds back on, she gets angry and won't speak to me.
My wife isn't anorexic, but I have a feeling she may be headed in that direction. She has no health concerns that either of us is aware of, and when I say anything she just says, "You wanted me thin, so now I'm thin!"
Please tell me what I should do before her dieting gets out of control and becomes a serious threat to her health. -- DISTRAUGHT HUSBAND OF A VERY THIN WIFE
DEAR DISTRAUGHT HUSBAND OF A VERY THIN WIFE:
I've got to say, that's one of the cleverer, if bulkier, pseudonyms I've come across in a while. Kudos to you. It's much more awesome than "Carbon-Based Form of Life Sitting at a Computer Who Writes a Letter for Advice Because He is Too Incompetent to Face His Problems By Himself."
So here's what I suggest, Claude: start having an affair with a really fat chick. I'm talking about one whose paunch you need to prop up with like a crutch or a tree limb or something just so you can like get it in there, n'yah mean? Some really skeezmatic shit there, yo. Then, your wife will be all like, "Damn-- he must really like some fat-assed shit," and she will gain more weight and will forgive your infidelity and it will be all cool.
Just make sure you wear a condom when you're doing this fat chick, because they carry all kinds of diseases. Especially in their butts.
My husband's sister, "Irma," has hurt us with her words and actions many times. When the drama is over, she will suddenly send an e-mail saying she "misses" my husband and me. I do not want to seem like an unforgiving person, but I'm tired of this repeated behavior. My husband and I feel we're better off not socializing with her and my bother-in-law, but if I respond to her e-mail, it just opens the door for yet another incident. How can we clear the air but not leave ourselves open for another attack? -- FORGIVEN BUT NOT FORGOTTEN
Steve Jobs just invented this amazing thing-- it's called the "iDelete Key." Go get one at Best Buy.
I have been spending more time than usual in doctors' offices now that I care for my elderly father. Lately, a lot of these offices have added TVs to their waiting rooms.
The sets are invariably tuned to 24-hour news channels on which combative people yell at each other. I think this is a bad choice for sick people. Subjecting them to this kind of programming can only raise their blood pressure. If the televisions have to be there, they should show calmer programming, like shows about food and cooking, homes and gardens, science or history.
I have tried making this point to the various health care professionals, but they look at me like I'm from Mars. Am I overreacting? -- TIRED OF YELLING HEADS IN SOUTH CAROLINA
DEAR TIRED OF WHATEVER:
You're right-- CNN has been clinically proven to elevate blood pressure of patients over 80 years old. The Tuscumbia Alabama Journal of Horseshit Medicine just came out with that study, I think. They should definitely be turning the station to "Jerry Springer" so your dad and his ilk can watch white supremacists break chairs over the heads of Hispanic hermaphrodites with 38-FF tits and no teeth.
It's okay, honey-- you're not from Mars. You're just an asshole. Thanks for playing.
Friday, January 14, 2011
You may very well have been three or so steps ahead of me in thinking this about me yourself for quite some time already. It wouldn't surprise me to learn that you're ahead of me. In fact...
I may very well be an alien, or some sort of medical marvel. I haven't decided which-- maybe I'm both! A medical marvelous alien medium-shirt-wearing miracle child. Mmm-HMM!
Allow me to explain why I think I'm, well, special, and, before you get totally turned off-- I promise, it has nothing to do with my writing prowess or my ability to drum my toes, which really freaks my wife out. My reasons for thinking thusly about myself lie predominantly in two of life's basic functions, (don't worry-- I'm not going to take this blog straight into the boom-boom and/or doo-doo room, much to your assured and appropriate amazement), and those functions are:
EATING & SLEEPING
Permit me to excorpundulate:
Straight up, ladies: I can eat whatever the fuck I want. I know, you just clench your little fists and get all hot-and-bothered, but, hey-- what can I say?
It's the truth.
I am a fucking disgusting garbage disposal. I haven't put on a single pound in twelve years and counting. I eat seconds. I eat thirds. When I order lo mein, I can never decide which animal ought to be graced with the privilege of swimming amongst the noodles and peanut oil I receive (in quart size-- pints are for puss-o's) so I get the "House Lo-Mein." In Chinese, the word "House" translates to "Chicken, Pork, Beef, and Shrimp."
I am revolting. Revolt in revelatory revolution against my reviling, revolting revoltingness. I support your campaign against me and what I stand for.
Not only am I blessed with the metabolism and ability to eat whatever the hell I want (and whatever the hell YOU want, for that matter) without gaining any weight, I have also been granted ownership of ironclad intestines. I have not thrown up since I was a senior in high school.
How many of you socklickers can claim you made it through four years of liberal arts education without hraulgphing up at least a quarter of one of your lungs?
Obvs, the fact that I choose not to libate licentious liquors certainly contributes to the fact that I have clung to the ability to keep partially-digested food matters where they belong, but, honestly-- I've eaten some pretty sick shit in my days, and some pretty sick quantities of some pretty sick shit and, by all that's holy and all that's proper, I should mung-dung'd into the bowl numerous times, especially in my early twenties, when I routinely consumed two "Hungry Man" frozen dinners in one six-hour period.
Salisbury Steaks, motherfuckers.
I told you-- I am not human.
As I write this sentence of this blog, it's exactly 8:01pm, EST. Seeing as I have to wake up at 5:15am, I should probably be asleep right now, but that won't happen for another three hours. It rarely does. Sure, I've been in my pajamas since my wife and I came home from the gym at 5:45pm, but that doesn't mean I'm anywhere near ready for bed. Why? Because, the simple fact of the matter is: I don't sleep.
I don't need sleep, apparently, because only humans need sleep and, as we are discovering together: I am not human. I get a couple hours of sleep, literally, a couple, and then I'm making coffee, making lunch, walking two dogs, shoveling snow, driving to work within the confines of the law, interacting with all manner of sociopaths, borderlines, and other feces-smearing individuals according to established protocol and common sense, and then I come home and interact appropriately (?) with my wife and dogs.
Sleep? Who needs that?! NOT ME!
How do I know? Because I go to sleep at 11ish, and then, between 2:15 and 3:30 in the morning, I wake up. Why? I don't know. Because, um, I have a lot on my mind? I'm thinking about blog topics? There are obscure folk songs running through my head? I replay conversations between coworkers or patients that happened during the day? I obsess over paperwork I trick myself into thinking I didn't complete or sign? I'm hard and it's difficult to fall back to sleep when you're hard? My pajama pants are twisted because of the coefficient of friction proffered by the flannel sheets? You know-- twisted around my hard dick?
Well, I don't know-- whatever the reason is that I'm awake between the hours of 2:15 and 3:30 in the morning, the fact is, I'm awake. And, when you're awake at that time, you want to know exactly what time you've awakened so you know how much time you have left to sleep-- this is assuming, of course, that you are able to fall back to sleep for a sufficient portion of that time.
So, if you're me which, in this scenario, you are (you lucky fucky), you are in a bit of a dilemma, see, because the alarm clock is on your wife's side of the bed, on her bedside table and, while its numbers are in gigantic red digital numerals that stand about a foot high, you can't see those numerals from that distance with your glasses off. Sure, you could reach over and put them on, but, when you're lying in bed, hard, with your pajama pants twisted around your legs like a straight trouser and folk music is running through your head, putting your eyeglasses on is basically just like running a white flag up the pole. It says, "I've given up. I'm never going back to sleep. I'm fucked."
And you don't want to give up. Because you're me, Hardon.
So, you prop yourself up by placing your right hand firmly on the bed and you try to push yourself over your long-suffering wife, straining and squinting so you can make out the numbers on the clock. And your long-suffering wife wordlessly, without opening her eyes or missing a beat, takes her left hand, presses it against your sternum, and shoves you back, flat onto the bed.
Because she is most definitely, beautifully, human.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Clearly, I haven't done much the "Design" button, as the "design" of this blog, if you can call it that, (hence the quotes), has remained relatively unchanged for the entirety of my 674 posts hereupon. That is largely by, ahem, design. I don't put much stock into tinkering with things, or prettying them up. I'm under no delusion that this blog isn't, well, a guy's blog and, therefore, will remain unadorned with and unencumbered by pesky things like aesthetics or, you know, class.
The stats button I look at regularly. I obsess over who's reading this blog, who isn't, how frequently people come back here, what posts are attracting the most attention, and where people live who read this cockshit. Those of you who use Google Reader obfuscate and confuse my stat tracker, damn you, as it doesn't pick you up. What the hell is wrong with you people? Who do you think you are-- fuckin' Batman or something?
The one button or tab or whatever the hell it is that I've never pushed, never really even thought about, is the one that says "Monetize."
The idea that "My Masonic Apron" could somehow make me money, even the equivalent of two buffalo nickels, is enough to make me, well, smile. It's funny. It's difficult to believe. It's counter to pretty much everything I believe in. In fact, I have politely rebuffed two individuals who attempted to compensate me in some way for either reviewing/pushing a book on this site, or reviewing/pushing a product on my blogdience.
For those of you who don't believe that I am capable of politely rebuffing somebody-- I really was nice. I promise. I even turned it around on myself.
"I believe you may have grossly overestimated my influence," I wrote to one of them. Because, really, I believe that they did.
Some people who are far savvier and cleverer than I are making their blogs work for them, and why shouldn't they? Blogging is hard work, I don't mind telling you. I mean, here I am, slaving away over these hot keys for you, to produce this... um.... product. This service. This infotainment. This blog equivalent of a trifle for you to serve to your cyberfriends.
Seriously, though-- blogging is the easiest thing in the world-- and there's sizzling shitloads of donkheads who get paid for doing unbelievably easy crap. So, like, where's my fucking money, y'alls?
Like, monetize me, Batman.
I mean it. Send me money. A long time ago, I stopped blogging for, like, six weeks, and this other time a long time ago, I had this lameass existential crisis where I made vague threats that I was considering not blogging anymore, and you guys were all like, "No, don't," or something, and so I kept doing it, without any tangible, fungible, or negotiable reward whatsoever. Hell, most of you don't even comment anymore, so I don't even get the thrill of knowing that I'm making some kind of meaningful connection with the giddy, raven-tressed, pig-tailed, tank-top-wearing masses reading this tripe on cute white laptops on frilly pink bedspreads all across the world.
So, pay up.
I was thinking about putting a Paypal "Donate Now" button on the blog, but, gee, that's kind of like sitting outside a 7-Eleven, shitting in my pants and holding out a rusty, tin cup for drink-drink money, isn't it? I mean, I don't want to appear desperate or anything.
I just want to get all monetized or whatever.
Sure, you could donate to the "Julian Assange Defense League", or to the "Save the Welsh Corgis from Families Who Live in Scarsdale Foundation", or to the "Extradite Rachael Ray to the Golan Heights Fund" or to "Habitat for Profanity," but why would you rescue Greyhounds or honor Bluebloods or support Redbirds when you could just as easily put a few more in the pockets of a true, genuine, American antihero: Mr. Apron?
Give. It's as easy as taking off a tank-top.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
I don't know your feelings on this subject, but, to me, giving someone a subscription to "Reader's Digest" is basically like giving them a year's worth of diarrhea, or a year's worth of fingernail clippings. A year's worth of, well, liverwurst hamburgers.
Mrs. Apron reads the "Reader's Digests" that she receives with what appears to be a mixture of apathy and interest, which admittedly is a tenuous combination. Her eyes, however, sparkled last night as she got to one particular advertisement.
"Here, Bobber," she said to me with a devilish grin, "this can be your blog topic for tomorrow."
It's a full-page advert, courtesy of your friends at "Always." A young-looking, improbably hot mom with long, chestnut hair draped lovingly over improbably pert 36-Bs sits Stage Right. She's lightly touching the chin of her slightly awkward-appearing daughter, with unfortunate bangs, who is gazing almost soulfully into her mother's eyes, as if said mother were in the process of dispensing some carefully-guarded pearls of MILF wisdom.
And she certainly is. She is talking to her daughter about menstruation and, by the same token, she is...
TALKING TO YOUR DAUGHTER ABOUT MENSTRUATION
"Although most girls get their first period around age 12," the ad copy states, "some start menstruating as early as age 8. That's why explaining what's ahead is so important."
* "The best appeoach is to start early and speak often. Don't wait for one 'big talk.' Provide age-appropriate information and let her know you're okay discussing it."
I don't know that I agree wholeheartedly with this first one. I'm a pretty ardent proponent of the "big talk." I would recommend renting out a boardroom of a local hospital or corporate entity-- the more formal the better-- perhaps with some austere oil paintings of stern-looking middle-aged or elderly men in tweed suits staring down over spectacles with one wily eyebrow raised. This will make your daughter aware of the importance of the information that you are about to reveal to her, and will enhance the gravitas of your presentation. Remember, don't be afraid to yell. Yelling drives home the important points.
* Talk about all the issues of puberty - physical changes, reproduction, menstruation, etc. There's a lot to cover."
Whoa, Always peeps-- we're supposed to have this marathon conversation with our eight-year-olds? Reproduction? Shit, man. You're damn right-- there IS a lot to cover. Renting this boardroom isn't coming cheap, you know. You might have to throw on a few extra hours, just to cover foreplay alone!
* "Let her know everyone's body is different and development comes at different times for every girl."
This is also known as the "It's okay that you're completely and utterly flat-chested" talk. Yeah... have fun with that.
* "Always put the discussion in apositive light. Explain that menstruation is a wonderful part of being a woman - without it, women couldn't become mothers!"
Right, because your eight-year-old daughter really gives a big honkin' shit about that. In other words-- lie through your goddamn teeth, leave out all the unpleasantness about that first horrifying drip on the floor during the 6th period math test, the cramps, the bloating, the misery, the scores of stupid, incompetent men who just don't get it and, at the high school prom, will suggest doing you "in the mud" as a viable alternative to vaginal intercourse while you're menstruating. Oh, and don't you love how they start this one off with the word "Always"? Just can't resist dropping that brand name, can you, bitches?
* "Have a book available if your daughter would like to look at it."
Great advice. Any particular one you have in mind? "To Kill a Mockingbird" maybe?
* "If your daughter doesn't bring up the subject, get the conversation started by asking her what she knows about puberty and what questions she has. Time this with a doctor's appointment and let her know that the doctor can help explain what's going on with her body."
I don't know, man. Getting the conversation started by "asking her what she knows about puberty" doesn't seem like a really creative icebreaker to me. I suggest trying something like this:
Spill some POM Wonderful juice on the white livingroom rug. Turn to your daughter and say, "Janice-- once a month, for a very long time, this is going to be your life. Now clean that shit up, goddamnit, and go to your room for five days. Mommy's going to go in the den and read 'Reader's Digest'."
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Soundbytes. Blips. Thumbs moving at incredible speeds on teensie QWERTYs. Tweets. Updates. Messages. Blip. Bling! Glang. Streaming tickers on the HD flatscreens in front of the elliptical machines at the gym. NPR. FOX. Everything in between, and everything beyond.
We're practically gagging on information and spin and doctrine and palaver. No, we are gagging. And, yet, we are anything but gagged. All of us, spewing and spouting, our mouths hundreds of paces in front of our minds-- left in the neuron dust. Bye-bye, brain. Won't be needing you very much today.
Googling "Gabrielle Giffords" at 4:35pm on Monday afternoon yields 76,900,000 hits. Approximately. Unbelievable. Incomprehensible. What is all of that? Is it information? Is it what we need to know, or want to, or dare to? What it is, I don't know. Now, after I hit "Publish," it'll be 76,900,001 (approximately) and I am disgusted with myself, almost to the point of wretching, for contributing to this profane noise, this internet abuse of a woman in a medically-induced coma, abuse of the corpses and memories of the victims of this appalling tragedy, this obscenity.
Hi. Here I am, another lout, contributing to the bloody mess. What a punk.
I swore up and down that I wouldn't. Of course I did. After all, it is just my style to eschew and reject what "everyone else" is talking about, as if I am some sort of badass, counter-culture barometer. Please-- what a fucking, very unfunny, very transparent joke. I promised myself I would write about something silly, maybe about different uses for bras (put one in the freezer overnight and then set it on the coffee table, fill it with candy. Haha-- what a comic genius) or some commentary about-- I don't know, inane food products or the way people look at you after you exit the restroom at work. I thought, "Yeah, well, that's what my readers want or need right now-- some levity to distract them from saturating over this deplorable situation." Like I'm going to come save you from the New York Times. Like I'm Chevy Chase, falling over a ladder.
I guess I realized that I ought to stop horseshitting myself, and you, and accept that there was, in fact, something about all of this that I wanted to say. It hit me while I was listening to Terry Gross interview some schlocko journalist about the very loose gun laws in Arizona, and, "would stricter gun laws have maybe prevented this tragedy?" She asked him questions about concealed weapons, and whether or not the Glock semiautomatic handgun would have been outlawed under this provision, or that, and how this "alleged shooter" in this incident did purchase his gun legally, but didn't have a concealed weapons permit and under what circumstances could a police officer (if one had been at this event) have stopped the suspect and frisked him after seeing that he had a concealed weapon, and I got so fucking furious I wanted to scream:
TERRY: IT IS CALLED A "CONCEALED WEAPON" FOR A FUCKING REASON, THAT REASON BEING THAT IT IS CONCEALED ON YOUR PERSON AND OUT-OF-VIEW OF OTHERS, LIKE, SAY, A POLICE OFFICER, EVEN A NON-EXISTENT, FICTICIOUS, HYPOTHETICAL POLICE OFFICER WHO WAS NOT EVEN AT THE SAFEWAY WHERE ALL OF THESE PEOPLE WERE SHOT.
Then she pissed me off even more by asking, "Well, what about unconcealed weapons? What sort of questions would a police officer ask someone who had an unconcealed weapon?" This stumped her guest.
"Well, I don't know, maybe they wouldn't ask anything."
I was very upset by this point. How ridiculous was this conversation? I just couldn't take it anymore.
Was it the fault of the store that sold the gun?
Was it the fault of the second Walmart that sold the ammunition?
Was it the fault of the parents for not notifying authorities of bizarre behavior?
Was it the fault of mental health practitioners for not notifying the state or the criminal justice system?
Was it the fault of the court that threw out the arrest for drug paraphernalia?
Was it the fault of lax mental health reporting duties?
Was it the fault of law enforcement for not adequately stationing officers at the scene for VIP protection detail?
Was it the fault of the Secret Service and/or the FBI that does not provide routine protection details state-level politicians?
Was it the fault of Sarah Palin and her stupid fucking little target symbols on that map that I can't stand to hear another word about on Facebook or anywhere else?
Was it the fault of the vitriolic state of political debate in this country?
Oh. My God. Oh, my God.
We are so thirsty for answers, to insatiably horny over assigning blame, so unstoppably greedy when it comes to our relentless, pounding search for scapegoats and reasons and division or healing that any reason, any dignity, any sense of proportion or pause is just thrown right out the window. Mr. President, a moment of silence is a good start, but it's hardly sufficient. Maybe you should have ordered a day. Or a week. Could you, sir, have ordered us some time to just be sad?
What the hell ever happened to just being sad?