Throw Pillows Are The Worst

Share Button

I hate throw pillows.  What is the purpose of a pillow that costs an exorbitant amount of money and time, you can’t sleep on them, they house dust mites, and no one, outside of the inhabitants of the bedroom, ever sees them?

Bigger Time Suck Than Facebook 

In the ten years I’ve dealt with decorative pillows, I have wasted approximately five hours of my life throwing them on the floor prior to going to sleep1.  My wife has wasted even more time.  Every morning she carefully puts each one on the bed as she rebuilds our sleep shrine.  When you add in time spent procuring the pillows from department stores, surfing online, as well as consulting others getting second opinions to ensure that they complement the bedding, curtains, and bath towels, the time lost becomes immeasurable.  When Jack Kevorkian’s apprentice pulls the plug on me in some nondescript hospice center, I’m sure I’ll say, “You know, I really wished I spent more time enjoying the beauty of decorative pillows.  Commence the flat-lining.”

The Pillow You Can’t Sleep On 

After flinging the pillow art off the bed, I uncover my trusty, run-of-the-mill K-Mart pillow and sleep.  In the morning my pillow is covered in drool and the dead soldiers from my receding hairline.  Apparently, decorative pillows are meant to be seen and serve no functional purpose.  Any attempt to sleep on the decorative pillow results in a lecture so painful I wish I could have just slept on the hardwood floor without any pillow.  The one-way conversation revolves around themes that I will douse the thing in saliva and snot while sleeping and ruin the pillow.  This confuses my pragmatic approach to life that things are meant to be used for what they were designed for.  Score another point for throw pillows in the “these things are beyond worthless” category.

Truly Is An Art Piece

Even if I were allowed to fall asleep on these pillows, how would I rest comfortably on one with an infinite number of large ruffles, oversized plastic buttons, and a fabric so rough that it makes 80-grit sandpaper seem like a bag of goose down?

06-5562
You can pick up this gem at Ethan Allen for only $139.  When I think of a medieval torture device, I think of this.

Michael Breus Ph.D recommends “If you have a plain-old, inexpensive polyester pillow, you should be replacing it every six months” 2.  Somehow throw pillows are exempt from this rule because we have had the same decorative pillows around our house since nearly the turn of the century.  They spend half their life lying in the corner of a room collecting dust mites and other allergens.  During the day, they are transferred to the bed where they deposit all their floor collections to the bedding.  Real pillows become a harbinger for asthma and upper-respiratory infections.  Might as well pack a little ebola and meningitis in the kids’ lunches and send them off to school too just ensure that everyone gets full exposure to all forms of communicable diseases.

These Things Had To Be Invented By Swingers

Who goes into your bedroom anyway?  Unless you’re swinging with the pink flamingo in your front yard, no respectable human walks into your house and says “let’s see the throw pillows”.  Instead, you give them the ho-hum tour of the professional grade Viking Stone, the wet bar in the basement with some super dark, microbrew ale on tap, and the lithograph Picasso near the butler pantry.  No host exclaims, “you must check out my fifteen-year old decorative pillows.”  Throw pillows as decoration make about as much sense as painting a mural on the airducts in the walls for your HVAC system.

I’m sure there is a greater purpose for these pillows and I’m missing it, but until I figure it out, I’ll keep on dealing with the annoyance.

If you have 2 mins, watch me go through my nightly pillow ritual,

If you are a millennial with ADHD, just watch this GIF.

Image result for along came polly pillow gif

15 seconds x 365 days x 10 years = 5 hours

2 https://greatist.com/grow/when-buy-new-pillow

3https://www.ethanallen.com/en_US/shop-decor-pillows-throws-pillows/wildflower-pillow/065562.html?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=pla|us|nb|cmp|0_500&utm_content=shopping_nb&gclid=CjwKCAjw7MDPBRAFEiwAppdF9MrkIKwDlHjzXK2-SJJ2lOfwWVMpvawtTHmPubbNqGG0tFQkXcYgHBoC3GoQAvD_BwE

Share Button

Destination: Hangover 4– Stuck on an Airplane

Share Button

A million inside jokes are packed into this airplane story.  If you weren’t on the best bachelor of Sept 13-17, you probably want to tune in for the next installment of Skiing In Jeans.

I boarded the plane and sat across the aisle from my buddy Homer.  Dropping in next to me was a seemingly nice couple who immediately started telling me they were going aboard to blast red stag deer and mount them in a lion hunting scene in their basement.

“Thisssss is your captain sssspkeaing…” a major speech impediment ripped through the intercom.  I am sure the pilot was a very nice man who would be great to hang out with at a pub after landing, but while in flight, I hoped his ability to fly was better than his anchorman voice.

“Here look at this,” the husband said as he pulled out his phone to show me a limp giraffe immediately after the kill.  “I was in a helicopter.  You see, it’s not much of a fair fight, you know, man versus beast.”  I gathered that much after he said “helicopter”.

I glanced over at Benedict who was a row behind me, he was flipping through a book of Bauhaus architecture and talking nonstop about his European adventure.  The old lady next to him felt like I did sitting next to Ted Nugent.  Benedict rambled on and on about straight lines, boring windows and how the root of all great architecture starts with a box of Hungry Jack instant mashed potatoes.

“So what do you?” I pondered trying to get Papa John off the topic of killing for sport.  Sitting in the economy minus section was taking a toll on my knees.

“I.T., but I really like to hunt, let me show you some pictures…” he continued the conversation as if I didn’t already listen the entire ascent discussing hunting Babar.

The drink cart barreled down the aisle causing at least three elbow fractures.  One of the stewardesses looked like a less strung-out Lindsey Lohan.  Dave, ten rows up from me, pulled out his W2 and laid down his rap.  She was mildly amused, but moved on to a ten-gallon hat wearing Texan who looked like an oilman.

SPOILER ALERT:  On this trip of 15 dudes, I, the married guy, am the only one to get some.  A plump, middle-age, beyond drunk woman kissed me on the forehead.  Then she wandered off to suck face with someone more age and physically appropriate for her.  I felt betrayed.

“Here are 400 African shelduck we got last January; only a couple got away,” he said with the same sense of accomplishment as a cardiologist who performed a life-saving surgery on an infant.  In his excitement of reenacting a kill shot, he knocked his wine all over my Z. Cavaricci’s.  He apologized out of obligation.

“How many men did you lose out there?” I asked in a sardonic tone.

“Huh?  One guy got the squirts for a couple days,” he replied, “look at the angle we had these birds coming over the crest—they didn’t see us until it was too late.”  If I stroked out from one of the many blood clots forming in my body, I would consider it a blessing.

Desperation set in as I noticed the big game hunter was only a fraction of the way through his photo album.  I motioned a fraternity distress signal in an attempt for Homer to save me from death by lecture, but he was bartering See’s candies piece by piece for miniatures of Courvoisier.  With his attention diverted, I looked elsewhere for help.  Too bad there wasn’t a friend upgrade option when I was buying my fraternal bond in college.

Near the exit rows, Andre finished the handle of peach schnapps that he smuggled onto the flight.  As we flew over Greenland, I realized the plane was going to suffer for him not bringing a second bottle onboard.  Already his rants about Range Rovers not being a value play and how he doesn’t need life insurance because he bets on himself caused the passengers to cringe.  The beast became more agitated when he grabbed the latest issue of Tech Crunch only to see the “dumbest guy from our [internationally acclaimed university]” on the cover.  This sent him into a rage that would make Amanda Bynes seem suitable for release from the sanitarium.

Bachelor Party Outbound
Bachelor Party Outbound

“What we have here is a black rhino.  There are about 5,000 left.  There was 5,001,” he let out a belly laugh that would make Satan jealous.  I wondered why the airport didn’t sell P.E.T.A hats, or if they did, why didn’t I buy one before boarding the flight?

I excused myself to use the bathroom, free up blood clots, and escape the talk of bloodshed.  Near the back of the plane, Jacko fidgeted like a pre-teen with ADD.  His inability to connect to FaceTime caused him to break out in a sweat while shaking on the verge of seizure.  His dilated eyes glared through me.  I moved down the aisle choosing the vacuum powdered toilet over dealing with a screen junkie.

As I sat back down next to Walter Palmer, the cameo scene of Pamela Anderson from the new Baywatch movie was frozen on Joel’s TV screen in front of me.  I wondered if he was joining the solo-mile high club, if the twenty-nine Xanax he took before takeoff finally kicked in and put him to sleep, or maybe the never-ending talk of blowing up warthogs knocked him out.

The meal service started.  Ernest Hemmingway attempted to steal my dinner wine before retreating to his reheated vegetarian meal.

Here’s to you Thomas.  Enjoy bumping uglies for the first time in your near half of century of life.  She is lucky girl to be hitched to you and your untamed mane of Fabio-looking hair.  Just don’t let her see the “Natalie” tattoo on your right calf.

Share Button

Things that Piss Me Off

Share Button

Stupid Things People Say:

  • “It is what it is.”  This phrase adds zero value to every conversation other than sucking down oxygen that others may need to make a valid counterpoint.  Apparently, even adults feel the need to earn participation awards just like children.
  • “It’s always in the last place you look.”  Yes, it is.  You are not going to keep looking after you found whatever your senile mind misplaced.  This saying was probably created by an old woman who lost things ad nauseam and need a rebuttal to all their friends and neighbors who say she should be put in a home.

Auto Related:

  • Not moving your car because you found a great parking spot-Following this logic, you will never move your car ever again.  Just keep paying insurance, monthly payments, and other carry costs until you call Victory Auto Wreckers.  Face facts here:  You are living in a place that you can’t afford and are subleasing the parking to pay the gas bill.
  • People who yell at drivers in other cars–the other guy can’t hear you and if he could he wouldn’t care.
  • Honking in traffic-I’m not talking about honking to let the semi know that he is about to back into a three-year old.  I’m ranting about the guy who is at a standstill in rush hour traffic blasting his horn.  We all know traffic sucks, but we don’t need you to remind us that we are stuck in a traffic jam.

Movies

I clap after watching movies in a theater because it annoys and embarrasses my wife.  That said, no one else should ever clap after watching a movie.  Unless you are at the premier of a movie where the director, lead actor, and supporting cast are present, do not try to start a slow clap at an AMC 45 in the middle of Idaho.  All you are doing is cheering for the high school kid who pressed ‘Play’ on the projector as well as delaying your own start in the post-movie race to the bathroom.

Self-Indulgent Go Fund Me’s

Yes, it sucks that you can’t afford to buy that three carat diamond ring for your fiancé or that your kid is not good enough to play on the house league lacrosse team and needs to “play up” on a travel league.  Whatever you do, please do not start a Go Fund Me Page for your inconsequential shortcomings.  There are many worth charitable causes that are tax-deductible and provide benefits for mankind rather than your egomaniacal motives.

Indecision

Indecisive People- You know them.  I know them.  This is how a typical conversation goes (in this case a husband and wife):

Person Normal:  “We’ve done the research.  Are we ready to buy the new Ford Escape today?”
Person Indecisive: “I think we should wait.”
Person Normal:  “Why?”
Person Indecisive:  “Just to make sure.”
Person Normal:  “Is Consumer Reports coming out with a new report on the Ford Escape?  Is Ford going to have a better rebate next month?  Does the Escape have some type of exploding transmission resulting in massive recalls and deaths to all that continue to drive the vehicle?”
Person Indecisive:  “Oh no, none of that.  I think we just wait.”
Person Normal:  “For what then?  We did the research, we just need to sign the papers, drive off in our new Escape, and smell the new car smell.”
Person Indecisive:  “Why don’t we just wait and see?”
Person Normal: “So we just wait?”
Person Indecisive:  “Yes.  I’m glad we made this decision.”

Phone usage

  • Pulling out your phone because someone else does.
  • People who record video that is unnecessary to record.
    • Fireworks shows-You’re really going to rewatch your 2014 July 4th firework show you recorded from your buddy Ron’s backyard? Spolier alert:  They have fireworks every July 4th.
    • Professional sports-If ESPN’s 37 cameras ever fail to capture Corey Seager’s throw to first base and they need your shaky iPhone 5 video for Sportscenter, the world has much bigger issues than calling on you to provide a 38th
    • Anytime someone is in danger. It is not the time to try and get on TMZ as you watch a man die from getting crushed by a manure truck. Turn that camera into a phone and call 9-1-1.

Image result for manure back to the future gif

Special Mention

  • Using door knobs as a towel rack, bag holder, closet bar, or hat rack.
  • Humming or singing indiscernible songs while doing mundane tasks—Your life is not a musical. You don’t need a live soundtrack playing while you do dull tasks like screwing in a light bulb or filling up a bike tire with air.
Share Button

My Next Big Project – – Uber Bang

Share Button

I run this slick blog with over 100 employees waiting to please their CEO, but if I were really a tech guru, I would have created a ride-share program combined with a dating service called Uber Bang.

This is a trillion dollar idea.
This is a trillion dollar idea.

The idea is simple:  You need a ride.  You are single.  You pull up Uber Bang on your phone.  Next thing you know, you have another notch in the bedpost and you arrive at your destination.  Safety, for the ride and the bang, is our number one concern.

Uber Bang understands that people don’t like to bang with people less attractive than themselves, so at Uber Bang we have a rating system that allows users to rate themselves on the standard 1-10 scale.  Our proprietary rating system takes a guy’s self-rating and lowers it by two ticks.  We raise a woman’s self-rank by three ticks.  The logic is simple.  Guys tend to have lower standards of the girls they will bang, and men also tend to overstate their attractiveness.  Let’s take a look at how this works in the real world:

Jared gets off his shift at Farm and Fleet and needs to get to the other side of town to meet up with his buddies to catch the fall Hokkaido Bank Curling Classic.  Meanwhile, in the middle of town, Rachel just dumped her loser, unemployed boyfriend and is looking to cleanse her palate with a random dude before meeting up with her parents at Ronakor Sushi, the hottest, new raw fish place in town.  Jared pulls up Uber Bang and rates himself a ‘9’ as well as typing in his destination at Yatty’s, a Canadian sports themed bar.  Rachel, feeling a bit depressed because she is approaching thirty and realizes that she may have to join a convent, dials in her attractiveness at a ‘4’ along her destination.

Uber Bang summons a driver as well as notifying Rachel and Jared that they have both a ride and a bang coming their way.  Harold, an available Uber Bang driver, checks the prophylactic supply as well as Tic Tac count before heading off to pick up Jared.

Jared is waiting on the corner when the bright orange Uber Bang van stops in front of him.  Harold looks over Jared to confirm that he is at least a ‘7’ before tossing him a smoking robe.  Rachel is anxious as she awaits the Uber Bang van.  She tosses her hair, checks her makeup, and gives herself a pep talk involving the need to get a new penis in her to flush out any memory of her ex.  As the Uber Bang van pulls up, Jared gives Rachel a wink.  She is somewhat repulsed by this overt attempt at romance, but realizing that dinner starts in twenty minutes, she jumps into the back of the van.  Since Rachel requested the Uber Bang Platnium Ride, Harold turns on the disco ball and puts some Barry White on the sound system.

Jared is grateful that Rachel doesn’t look like his sister and Rachel is happy that Jared looks like a poor-man’s Zac Efron.  Jared tries to make small talk with Rachel, but she is concerned about being late to dinner, so she mounts Jared while Harold navigates through the streets.

Rachel’s stop is first, so she jumps out of the van as Harold tosses her a smoke.  Jared raises his hand in a feeble attempt to say “bye” as Rachel ignores him.  Jared tries ordering the live-action souvenir picture to his phone for five bucks, but Rachel elects to pay up for the veto option and the photo is destroyed.

Uber Bang cares about its customers so it depends heavily on its review system.  Here is how those turned out:

Rachel’s reviews:

Jared:  4/5.  “When Jared started crying, it got a little weird, but we got through it.  Girls, be warned he wears tighty whities, but he’s got solid pelvic motion.  I hope he doesn’t think it is more than a one-off bang.  I don’t need another stalker.”

Harold 2/5.  “I understand that I’m banging in the back of a van doing 30 mph, but I don’t need the driver going all voyeuristic on me.”

Jared’s reviews:

Rachel:  5/5.  “This is the best first date ever!  She kept calling me Jamal instead of Jared but I was balls deep so I didn’t correct her.”

Harold:  4/5.  “The scented candles are a nice touch.  I feel like I’m stuck in limbo between an off-the-strip Vegas titty bar and Mexican all-inclusive in need of serious renovation.”

Harold’s reviews:

Jared: 5/5.  “Jared’s crying just wasn’t right.  That was a first”

Rachel:  5/5.  “Rachel claims she never used Uber Bang before, but all the girls say that.”

You think Uber Bang is just my dumb idea?  Think again hotshot.  It was endorsed by Urban Dictionary.  Check it out here:  http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Uber+Bang&utm_source=search-action

Share Button

The Best Holiday of the Year: Thanksgiving

Share Button

Based on the Vikings trading the Apache Indians 726 potatoes for Mackinac Island and subsequently spreading small pox throughout North America, Thanksgiving has evolved from the onset of pestilence into a day of gluttony in your uncle’s suburban dining room.  The grandchildren say the holiday lacks entertainment other than watching the vagabond your aunt invited into her house (“’tis the season of helping those less fortunate,” she says) drink himself into a stupor and urinate on her antique couch.  The oldest generation regales in stories of the previous old generation that no one else remembers.  With the old and young otherwise occupied, the middle-agers step up to ingest all the benefits of this unparalleled holiday.

It doesn't get more American than this
It doesn’t get more American than this

Do Nothing

On Thanksgiving you get to perform at your highest level of sloth.  There is no pressure to dress up as an Easter bunny, pass out candy while pretending to be amused by a kid wearing a Darth Vader mask, or risk blowing your fingers off with illegal Chinese fireworks.  You will not find yourself in a position where you drink yourself to lusting after a fugly stranger at midnight, which has a strong chance of blossoming into another bout of chlamydia.  You don’t have to deal with the wrath of your relatives about you being a terrible gift giver when you fling packs of Marlboro’s across the room to infants and the asthmatics yelling, “and lung cancer to all and to all a good night.”

Eat

Thanksgiving in its basic form is a privatized version of Old Country Buffet sans cover charge.  The women take pride in the ‘homemade’ cranberry sauce even though you can see the rings from the tin can impressed in the red blob sitting on a piece of china that hasn’t been freed from the cabinet in at least a decade.  The meal is a standardized spread that gives you comfort in eating the same sides and main dish year after year.  If you were more ambitious, and wanted to win Shark Tank, you would find a way to liquefy the entire feast to sell it in IV bags so guys could mainline it to allow for uninterrupted football viewing, but you are you so that’s not going to happen.

When you pass out after dinner, you blame the triptopan in the turkey.  You deny that the fifteen cups of glug you pounded after getting winded walking to the annual alley football game had anything to do with your nap.  You rattle off an excuse that your inability to run in the game is due to an old knee injury.  The reality is that your lack of physical activity beyond crushing clown cans on the train rides home from job as a mid-level manager puts you at a daily risk for a torn ACL from bending over to pick up your shoes in the morning.  Your nephews dismiss you as a decrepit and loquacious.  They declare that they will never fall to your level of lethargy.  You envy their youth, but know that with the ‘D’ averages they are pushing at the local community college a job working the cash register at the Mobil on the overpass will be their future.

Judgement

By the end of the night, bad blood within the family has resurfaced as Cousin Joe rants about his thirty year grudge against Grandma because she bought his brother Steve a car, but Joe was stuck riding his Schwinn.  Your brother-in-law is using his diaper-wearing child’s demeanor as an excuse for an early exit as he is grateful that he only has to see most of these people once a year.

Your often-homeless niece is plotting her Black Friday shopping spree at Wal-Mart.  You see the greed pumping through a protruding vein in her forehead.  By her calculations, if she leaves right after desert, waits in line, and tramples as many people as needed when the doors open at five in the morning, she can save $50 on a TV.  You point out that she is valuing her time at five dollars an hour plus the intangible costs of throwing off her circadian rhythm and possibility facing arrest for fighting with some poor security guard working graveyard shift to feed his six kids.  Of course, she ignores your superior logic and moves on to tell your mother about how great the Black Friday deals are this year.

As you stumble to your Uber, you take great pride in yourself that you truly are the black sheep of your family.  You are better equipped for this world than they are.  You are grateful that their inferior genetic makeup was omitted out of your DNA at your conception.  Of course, they are thinking the same of you, but that thought never enters your head.

Share Button

Get Ready For the Olympic Hangover While the Election Fiesta Continues

Share Button
download
Any other options?

Every four years we experience a frenzy on par with Super Bowl Sunday, but it runs for almost the entire year.  I’m talking about the Presidential election.  Wait, I’m blabbering about the Olympics.  The people of the US and A react the same way to those running for office as they do for those kids heading down to Rio to bring home the Zika.

Everyone is an Expert

Joe Six-Pack is ignorant of the games—until they start.  After that Olympic torch fires up, Joe is arguing Phillip Dutton’s chance of landing gold in dressage (horse dancing).  He will explain why motor boating, the kind with a boat and a motor you sex fiend, should be reinstated as an Olympic sport.  Joe knows Olympics.  After the games end, Joe and his coworkers, who were arguing how Tongo shouldn’t have been slaughtered by South Korea in the first round of women’s archery, are back to yelling about how that 7th inning drop-third strike call in the Mets/Yankees game will ruin the sport of baseball.

When Joe isn’t fired up about gold medals, he is frantic about the next successor to the throne of the United States.  He saw an interview with the author of the latest tell-all Kennedy book on Fox News, and he is ready to share all the knowledge he gained in that three-minute piece with you over the next six months.  Joe knows his rights.  There is no way “They” are going take away his great-great-grandfather’s punt gun, and he is prepared to talk your ear off even though you agree with him.  Catch Joe in an off-year and will tell you ‘Rowe versus Wade’ is a new video game for PS5 and his denial into the Electoral College is the reason he is working the closing shift at Maud’s Bar on the weekdays.

Joe is a transitory guy.

Punt gun vs Jet
When the British attack us again, your punt gun will save all of us

Get Fired Up

There is nothing like events outside the scope of our own daily lives to instill fear and passion within the human mind.  Just because the Ukraine missed medaling by .8523 points in women’s duet synchronized swimming, doesn’t mean that you need to alter your routine of a Swanson TV dinner followed by a three hour episode of the ‘The Bachelor’ by watching the post-post-interview with Anna Voloshyna complete with subtitles instead.  When Trump starts telling everyone that he is going to build a wall covered in ectoplasma so that illegals can’t enter our country, make sure you write comment 4,285 that Yahoo! article instead spending time with your daughter on her school art project.  Consider your first amendment rights exercised.

Don’t forget to tie in your personal life with those presidential candidates and Olympic stars.  They do their best to relate to the everyman, so you should do your best to mimic their lives.

  • “I own a house, so I’m a real estate mogul—just like Trump”
  • “Just think of the job offers this girl is going to get after she wins the silver in trampoline. Kind of like me after I get promoted the lead tire guy at Jiffy Lube.”
  • “Who hasn’t deleted multiple public email accounts containing top-secret, highly classified information?”
  • “I signed up for a gym membership last week, so I could have filled in for Phelps if he was injured. I’m just saying.”

 “It Just Doesn’t Matter”~ Bill Murray in Meatballs

Here is the greatest motivational speech in movie history, watch it now:

Everyone is looking for the “Miracle on Ice” moment but instead we have Dream Team 16 eviscerating five guys who were working in a smelt factory in China the week before getting assigned to the national basketball team.  Which team really has greater fear of losing?  The prize:  A lifetime of public humiliation or execution in the town square.

Eight years ago when Obama was elected, every citizen was going to get a free cell phone and never have to work again.  My cell phone was shut off because of “lack of payment”, so I guess that didn’t pan out as planned.  Maybe I’ll have better luck getting free stuff with one of the two clowns running for office now.

No matter the outcome of the Olympics or the election, we are doomed.  If socialism or a dictatorship doesn’t bring us down, Ryan Lochte’s crime syndicate will.

Share Button

Confession: I like Justin Bieber’s song “Sorry”

Share Button

As I crash into middle age with my hair transforming from a lavish mane into a power alley, I face an internal crisis.  My radio listening should focus on “the hits of the ’90’s and early ‘00’s.”  I should live in a musical purgatory consisting of Blink 182, talking about how Smashing Pumpkins should have stayed broken up, and wondering why bars don’t end the night with Semisonic’s “Closing Time” anymore.  Whenever I hear the song, “Tubthumping” I think of my college roommate, Anthony Baldwin throwing himself to the ground of filthy bar only to get back up again.

The idea of holding a lighter in the air while your band plays its signature power ballad is gone, and the last great guitar solo happened in the pre-Internet age.  Our generation had upbeat songs like Third Eye Blind’s “Jumper”, REM’s “Everybody hurts”, and Pearl Jam’s “Jeremy”.  This new generation has its pulse fixed on 128 beats per minute in some over-sampled deep house baseline while vaping teenagers wave their lit cell phones to nearest speaker in a erratic flood of misguided solidarity.

Indulging in today’s pop music by listening to Justin’s latest hit, I have crossed the generational bridge into an era where teenagers pay hundreds of dollars to watch a “musician” walk on stage and press the play button on his iPod while kids do designer drugs, cover themselves in spray paint, and throw beach balls throughout the venue.  It sounds like a nightmare for the cleaning crew, but I guess this is the concert experience today.

Should I dislike a pop star who was learning how to use his My Little Potty when I was failing my Spanish final freshman year?  Au contraire, a boy who was crashing Lamborghinis and destroying rental houses at the same age when I was struggling to get a girl to go to a pledge dance is the admired one.  Would I want to hang out with the spoiled brat?  No way.  However, I’ll give the kid credit for writing a catchy tune.  For that, he earns my respect.

As my contemporaries get ‘jiggy wit it’ picking up their kids from school in the hip, yet cost effective, Subaru Forrester, I can pull up next to a car full of college kids and relive my youth knowing that we both enjoy the same song.  For the duration of Justin’s song cranking out of my car’s stereo, I represent youth again.  I embrace a total disregard for my own physical well being, personal finances, and employment outlook.  I am the youth of today with the experience of a guy approaching the back nine.  Looking through the eyes of a Gen Z’er, the world isn’t that bad.   I’ll even say I’ll become a democrat; “Sorry” that’s not going to happen; I got caught up in the moment.

If you know any disillusioned youths or old dudes in the middle of a mid-life crisis, please forward this to them.

Share Button

So You Want To Be A Hipster?

Share Button

Of all the issues facing our education system, hipsterdom is one of the most damaging. High school kids, from extremely affluent suburbs, have stopped showering and started listening to Phish to get in touch with their free spirit before jumping into daddy’s BMW 6 Series convertible.  Unfortunately, for some kids being a hipster is phase many of them never out grow.  If you’re one of those oversized, parasitic children, here is your maturation guide into an adult hipster.

Despite what clothes you wear, your laissez-faire approach to life, or your unshaven neckline, you are conforming to every beatnik, hippie or new wave kid that took the faux journey before you.  Keep reading to learn how to become an authentic twenty-first century beatnik.  It ain’t cheap to join a sub-average way of life, so if this is a little pricey for you maybe you should reconsider your dedication to becoming a hipster.

Fixed Gear Bike- $32,000

This transportation vehicle is must for any skinny-jean guy.  To be a bona fide hipster bike, it must have a single gear with no brakes, no freewheel at the rear tire, and absolutely no reflectors.

http://www.fastcodesign.com/1671042/a-32000-carbon-fiber-fixed-gear-bike-designed-by-a-formula-1-firm

Condo- $400,000 (possibly free-keep reading)

You can’t live your parent’s basement and expect to make it to the morning drum session in the subway by the time rush hour starts.  You’ll have your job as a barista coffee fetcher for the benefits, but your true calling is one of the following:  kitschy artist, independent record store clerk dealing in pre-1978 45’s from East Germany, or fifth year graduate student about to embark on your third, and eventual uncompleted, master’s thesis.  If you go the education route, make sure you enroll in a private, enigmatic, and exorbitant school majoring in history, English, or psychology.  If your parents are rich, it is cool if everyone knows that mommy and daddy and paying for your digs, leaving you a stress-free seventy-five years until you can focus on what you really want to do in life.

Attire- Varies, but it is expensive to look homeless.

The staples are a given:  the black framed glasses (corrective lens optional), unshaven armpits, androgynous shirts, and purple Converse shoes.  Where it gets tricky is the facial hair:  If you have it, flaunt it like Wes Bentley in Wal-mart.  If you don’t have it, transplant it. http://nypost.com/2014/02/25/hipster-wannabes-forking-over-thousands-for-facial-hair-transplants/

Jeans are a tough one; if you can fit into your girlfriend’s pants, don’t ask to borrow them or you may cross the line from pseudo eunuch to perpetual single guy who gives all his girlfriends eating disorders.

Music— Usually free, because, like this blog, there is no real demand for things done in poor taste.

The general attitude of “if no one else has heard of it, it must be great” applies here.  If it plays on radio, or god forbid the band plays on SNL, dissociate from it immediately.  Going to Idaho to watch a one-chord band play a cover of “Whip It” is worth bragging points in this category.

Books- Get a library card, so you can tell everyone “I use the library”.

Your demigod
Your demigod

Carry a copy of “On the Road” by Kerouac with you all the time.  It doesn’t have the same mystic as “Catcher in the Rye”, but your image is different than that of the Salinger crowd.  Even if you never read Jack’s credendum, toting the bible that started the movement will establish as you as a true hipster.  Of course, we are talking about the paperback version—don’t even think about bringing the Kindle out of your bedroom at the risk of looking like a responsible citizen.

Every generation has its group of vagabonds.  Unfortunately, you are now one of them.

Share Button

The Cubs Didn’t Win the World Series

Share Button

Almost five generations have come and gone without a Cubs’ World Series win.  More impressive than the drought is the legions of loyal Cubs fans across the country.  Every year the fans place bets for their boys to bring home a championship, and the “North Siders” fall short of winning the last game of the year consistently.

A status quo of mediocrity leaves little room to be disappointed.  Cubs spectators are not of the bandwagon variety, because there is neither band playing nor wagon to ride when your team is usually in the cellar.  The Cubs suit up at spring training with the hope of victory.  By May, the fans are saying, “Better luck next year,” but they remain loyal to the team throughout the season.  The Bleacher Bums throw back home runs.  Harry Caray lives on in fans’ hearts and minds every seventh inning stretch.  Contrary to what Lee Elia might have ranted about when he was the manager of the Cubs, the fans want the team to win, but they are fine with the Cubs just playing the game.

Why is a losing team a good thing?  Look at the Boston Red Sox.

Cub fans should thank Billy
Cub fans should thank Billy

The ‘Curse of the Bambino’ engulfed the Red Sox for almost a century before a World Series win in 2004.  Even the movie Fever Pitch was re-written to accommodate the victory, because no one expected the Red Sox to bring home the trophy.  Over ten years since that victory, the kids of Boston assume that their home team wins the October games about every five years (2004, ‘07, ‘13).  During the Curse, the hopeful, “What if they won?” punctuated the fans’ fall nights.  After winning the World Series those same nights are left with discussing the seemingly improbable with lines like, “Why didn’t they win?” or the audacious, “Of course they won, they are the Red Sox.”

With that childlike feeling of “Is this the year?” abruptly ending so went the distinguishing mark on a team that once banished Babe Ruth to the Yankees.  In place of the sentiment of hope, the dread of failure stands in its stead.  There is a special comfort in knowing the outcome; even if it means losing.

“If you build it, they will come”

As Ricketts family systemically ‘improves’ Wrigley by installing jumbo-trons, dismantling bleachers and eliminating privately owned rooftops, the fans still show up to soak in history.  Nostalgia draws the fans into the park from every street corner of America.  Inside, old men tell their grandchildren how the Chicago Bears returned kickoffs from left field.  They speak of Babe Ruth calling his shot in the same spot where Ernie Banks blasted his 500th home run.  Ryno jerseys stick out in the stands two decades after he retired.

The history is not forgotten.  It is transferred from one generation to the next.  Fathers relive their youth while at the same time creating the seeds of passion that their sons will pass to their children.  The park was built and the fans continue to come.

In time, the sanctum of the perpetual worst team in baseball will be rebuilt in Schaumburg with ergonomic plastic seats made in China, vegan tofu hot dogs, and a wheat microbrew-of-the-week.  One year, the Cubs might make it through a season without blowing the championship, but until they do, I’m sticking with the team that has the most impressive stat in sports.  I’ll take an sanguine spring over an orgasmic October every year.

Here’s to another century of hoping.

Share Button

Cell Phone Etiquette

Share Button

Remember life before cell phones?  People smiled to strangers in the elevator instead of playing Candy Crush.  You could pretend to be lost, ask a hot girl for directions then invite her to a “Chicks drink free happy hour.”  When you jumped off that two story building thirty million people didn’t watch you break your pelvis on YouTube.  Life was good.

Now there are now more cell phones than people in the world.  Only cab drivers are capable of using two cell phones simultaneously and those guys took years of practice to get good at it.  Let’s dive into the other types of cell phone wrongdoers.

Your Typical Abusers

Miss. Ringtone—I didn’t know phones still had these.

Mr. Xanac—It is ten pm.  The party is happening like the drunken beach house scene in Weekend at Bernie’s.    Everyone is laughing and meeting new people– except one guy.  He sits on a stool in the corner thumbing through his three friends on his MySpace account.  He wonders why his life looks more like Tom Hanks in Castaway than the guy in a Nicholas Sparks novel.

Mrs.  Ansel Adams—When people used to use film to take pictures, it meant something.  You only had twenty-four snapshots per roll; not 8,000 pictures combined with sixteen hours of video on your iPhone9.  You made every picture count.  You didn’t take pictures of fireworks on the Fourth of July, every time your kid spit up, or rapid fire shots of your friends throwing back that tenth shot of Skol vodka.  Here’s a tip:  Live in the moment, you might enjoy it.

Mr. Bluetooth—You, Mrs. Blackberry and your kid Flip Phone should all get a room.

Ms. Tears For Fears: “Shout, shout, let it all out”—Because you bought one of the bottom-shelf Cricket phones don’t make the rest of us listen to you as you attempt to yell from Newark to Kansas City.

gordon-gekko-cell-phone
Michael Douglas still wants to be Ivan Boesky

Mr. Big Deal—It is no longer 1988.  Talking loud on your cell phone as you walk down the street wearing the free suit from the Men’s Warehouse ‘Buy 1, Get 3 Free Special’ makes you obnoxious, not Gordon Gekko.

The Waze App—Drivers of this century know you can’t text and drive.  Apparently, it is still ok to fumble around with your phone as you confirm an accident or police presence while flying down the highway at eighty mph.

Mrs. Mulit-tasker—Conversations with these people are like you watching the Super Bowl in real time while your neighbors are on a fifteen-second delay.  They just can’t catch up.  This is how the conversation goes [the whole time them clicking away on their phone]

You:  “Blah, blah, blah”
Her:  “Yea…”
You:  “As I was saying, blah, blah, blah”
Her:  “Sure, sounds good”
[she finally looks up from phone giving you her full attention]:
Her:  “Wait, wait, no.  I’m not going to have a four way with you, my sister, and an escort to be named later.”

Mr. Britannica—”Wait, I’ll look it up.  It will just take second,” this person needs to verify every friendly, bar argument with Wikipedia.  Everyone stands around listening to seconds of their life waste away until Eager Beaver can verify the five tertiary reasons why the Peloponnesian War lasted as long as it did.

This Must Stop

I’m organizing a protest next Tuesday at the National Mall:  “Cell Phones Have To Go”.  I’m not going to be there, but if you could go on my behalf, that would be super.

Share Button
Page 1 of 3
1 2 3