Sunday, January 31, 2010

No one ever knew

So I'm in this writer's group, off of We meet every other Sunday, and read our writings to each other to get feedback on how to improve. I bitched up hardcore on this one, mostly because I just couldn't think of anything else for the writing prompt I was given.

The writing prompt was that your story had to start with "No one ever knew that I ..." and end with "and that's how I became ..."

Wouldn't you know, this one was the most well received by the group. I got emailed and posts about it after the fact, so I thought I'd share it here. I think I'll do that more often too. The next one I post will be from the one two meetings ago.

ANY way, here it is:

No one ever knew that I was a total emotional wimp. I wasn’t even aware of it myself. I watched sports. I drank beer. I broke wind in public places. I was a man’s man. I couldn’t imagine anything ever changing that, I was proud of who I was. But then I had that one life changing moment.

This moment completely snuck up on me, crashed through while I wasn’t looking. It all started in a hospital room, on a ward named “Labor and Delivery”; with my wife in her stirrups and I in my cap … and a lot of medical personnel. We had already been in the delivery room for quite a few hours, but before too long, the action picked up. The doctor made his entrance, looked me in the eye and asked, “Do you want to deliver this baby?”

I thought this was the doctor’s clever little way of setting up the ground rules, telling me that he’s in charge, and I should stay out of his way. I wanted to make a joke out of it, yet still explain that I understood completely that this was his delivery room, and I was a mere spectator. So, I said, “well I think you’re a bit more qualified than I am, I’m just a computer programmer”. But believe it or not, the doctor was making a serious offer.

Now, my personal life’s philosophy has always been that life is about how many stories you get to tell after you’re dead. So, there was no way I was passing up this opportunity. A nurse wasted no time in bringing me a pile of stuff and helping me put it on. Before you knew it, I was in a green surgical gown, had one of those shower cap thingies on my head, and sterile gloves on my hands. And while no one mentioned it to me at all, television had trained me to walk in the stereotypical hands up to keep sterile method.

Come to think of it, I hardly got any instruction at all. The doctor said “let me sterilize the new mom, and then you go in and pull out the baby”. What? Pull out the baby? How the heck do you do that? The doctor didn’t make it too difficult at all. Things in that delivery room stretched bigger than I ever knew possible, and to quote Forrest Gump, “that’s all I have to say about that.”

I grabbed hold of this hard to recognize, cheese covered mass, and pulled. As soon as the baby’s chest came out into the outside world, it was as if some one flipped the on switch. I watched her take her first breath. I saw the very first expression on her face. I held this beautiful pink princess in my arms, and I held her, as a wave of emotion hit me like a truck. First shock, then a bunch of emotions I don’t know how to name, and lastly, love. It was more emotion than I’ve ever experienced in my life. My eyes turned in to Niagra Falls, and never looked back. Two years later, it happened again, when my son was born.

Nowadays, I have to avoid movies like Steel Magnolias, and Marley and Me like a cat avoids a bath. I’ve found that once those water falls start, they’re hard to turn off. I still get to break wind in public places though; my son thinks it’s hilarious.

And that’s how I became a daddy.

Monday, June 29, 2009

No, really. I'm funny!

Those of you that know me -which are the only people that read my blog -know that I've done stand-up. I've always had the support of my friends, both near and far (side bar to do my Grover impression: Neeeaaaaaaar! *run* *run* *pant* *pant* *pant* Faaaaaar! Damn, I sounded just like him). They've showed up to my shows, most of which have sucked. Eons of trying, and having far more shitty shows than side splitters. I can say I've "killed" an audience before, but the ratio is crap. Ca-ca. Shit.
I've never thought that my haunting desire to be successful at stand-up was anything special. Doesn't everybody wish they were an awesome comic? I never felt apart from the crowd, just because I desired to be a stand-up comic. One thing that DID make me feel special was my friends telling me how I should do it: "You're funny, you should do stand-up".

Getting laid might not sound like it relates to stand-up (except that famous stand-ups get truckloads of ass), but for me it does. Female friends have told me that I should be getting more than I am right now, and before I divorced, they couldn't believe my wife wasn't putting out daily. It made me wonder if I was an asshole to live with, but my mind is filled with too many memories of kissing my wife’s ass, so I can’t be sure. But I’ve definitely learned that humor is a potent aphrodisiac. We all know that Chris Farley, John Belushi, and John Candy got plenty of hot women to touch them in their bathing suit area.

Being told that I could pull off a successful stand-up career, and possibly being knee deep in the swamp lands of poontang have more than one connection. One, they both feel fricken great! It’s tough to rank making a huge audience laugh against busting a nut. They also both leave you feeling euphoric for awhile afterwards. Two, they both consume a large part of my thoughts, daily (although the stand-up dream has evolved to comedian, or humorist. I wouldn’t mind being a comedy writer; skits, plays, columns, or all of the above). Thirdly, I’m told by close friends that I should pursue both. That should account for something, no?

I’ve now realized though, why I’m not hugely successful. Okay, maybe it’s just a valid theory, but it’s a reason to blog at the very least. I can’t force myself to “be me”. I can only truly be me around close friends. When I go up on stage, or around a single girl with a monster rack, I can’t be funny. My mind is racing, trying to find something,anything to crack a joke about. I either come up empty, or go waaaaay too far (“I want to be a tattoo artist, specializing just in titty tats).

I’m funniest, when I don’t care, and when I’m comfortable. That explains why I have close friends from the internet. When it’s text based, there’s an anonymity to it all. If I offend, they or I can click the red “x” in the upper right hand corner, and I’m hidden from any retribution. My friends in “real life” know me, know my humor, and if I go too far they blow it off as “that’s just how fatguy is”. I can only be comfortably funny around these kinds of people. My mind even works better, and faster, for spontaneous, and “play off each other” jokes. It also works best from the gutter –YOU DON’T HAVE THE RIGHT TO JUDGE ME okay I’m back.

My close friends will be my close friends no matter what, they’re safe. Even if they hate something I say, I apologize, and we move on, still friends. The internet, for reasons I’ve already explained, is safe. Comedy clubs, and potential booty … not safe. It’s stupid, I know. If girl doesn’t like me, she moves on. If an audience doesn’t like me, they move on. I’m just one of the many “not so funny” comics they saw that night.

So why can’t I? Any Freud wannabes want to come up with something? Let me know, I’m getting carpal-tunnel.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Editing is Fundamental

Terribly sorry, my last post made no sense whatsoever. I wrote it, read it, and saw nothing wrong with it, so I posted it. I re-read it again today and saw it laden with errors to the point it made no sense. Well readers, all ye few, you now know what kind of drivel I can produce while drunk (yet I was stone sober when I wrote that).

I've now edited it, while tired on a Sunday night. I hope I don't read it tomorrow and shout "WTF!!!??" while at work. That could end poorly. Note, I'm now going to post this post after re-reading it only once. The cycle continues.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ummmmm, Uhhhhhh

Let's all agree to never again text the word "um" or "uh" ever again. Those two words require tone to have effect. I don't care for either word in conversation, but I understand their uses in speech. I've even annoyed myself at my own verbal use of either word, which is hard to do. It's a lot like finding the smell of your own farts to actually be stinky.

In a text message, they have no place; you can't text the proper tone. No one texts or writes "um" or "uh" as an oral place holding pause: "I was at fourth and uuuhhhhhh ..." No one texts a signifier of nervousness: "Ummm, your wife is ummm, smoking hot, I'd like to ummm..." It has no validity as a “hang on, I’m thinking” indicator.

“Um” and “uh” can also have a comedic or sarcastic tone, to tease you about your own stupidity: “What’s one plus one?” (Answer) “Uhhhh, three?” Last, but not least is using it as an insult. Meaning “how could you possibly not know something so simple?” Example: "Uhhh, last time I checked, men couldn't give live birth."

I think most people are like me. Just jump to the conclusion that the tone of the “um” or “uh” is insulting. Its use is just plain unnecessary in all text in my opinion, but especially within text messages. Uhhhh, do you understand now?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

How To Lose Your Sense Of Humor

The quickest way to have absolutely nothing on your mind that you find comical enough to share, is to start a blog. Absent of a blog, you'll come up with loads of witticisms, and clever little anecdotes that you want to share with anyone and everyone. You'll muse with a baby in a stroller going on about how "Donuts don't 'call my name', no. Donuts grab me by the balls, slap me across my face and call me their bitch."

As soon as you start a blog to share your musings with the world, is the day you just run the hell out of musings completely. What's that all about?

In other news, I'm trying to come up with the ultimate "Nerd Quiz" to put on facebook. It'll wind up being multiple choice, but since I hang with uber-nerds, I won't put the choices here, just the questions (of which there are only 2 right now).
Comment the answers if you feel man -errr ... nerd enough.

1) Who created the Fjords of Norway?

2) What was Harry Mudd's real name?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

High School Musical III

My baby girl freaking loves this franchise! I've no idea why it's called a franchise, either. McDonald's is a franchise, yet so is a series of movies? Even if said movies are owned by Disney? I've never cared for it, but my daughter has an appreciation for music that I couldn't give her, so there's some good that comes from it, I guess. I've seen all three of them; one and two a multitude of times, and we just finished watching part three. There's loads to dislike about part three, let me rattle the minor ones off in a run on sentence as quickly as I can. It's too long it's a typical musical where the players spontaneously break out in song it's the gayest basketball playing I've ever seen the plot is jumpy the songs really REALLY suck this time it felt like the writers threw something together at the last moment and even the actors seem burned out on the whole fricken thing. Now to the bigger problems I had with the movie.

It's the senior year for the characters. PLEASE dear Lord in heaven, the father, the almighty, the creator of heaven and earth, of all that is seen and unseen ... don't let them make College Musical I. These are supposedly 17 and 18 year olds. Throughout the movie, Troy and Gabriella are trying to find a moment's solitude, so they can mack. Well, not really. Whenever they do, it's the lightest most innocent little peck. Now, I know, tweens are their target demographic, which really means that first and second graders wind up being the fan base. I don't want my little cupcake watching a full on make out session with Troy grabbing a handful of ass or anything like that. But to the non innocent of us watching, it's such crap. You can't get through the movie at all without thinking, "if this were real high school, Troy would reach over ad naseum and get a handful of Gabriella's tiny lil titty." He was the captain of the All State basketball team, second year running. You know he'd have the world's hugest ego. She was a supposed brainiac, getting a full ride to Stanford University. In high school, she'd have felt shunned by the stuck up conceited "pretty girls" and would've been permanently planted on Troy's cock because of all the attention that being his boyfriend would bring her. She'd do anything and everything she could to keep that going.

The worst part of this movie, and I hope my daughter doesn't get this bullshit etched into her brain, is in the first song. They're playing the championship game, and (Dear God NOOOO!) the Wildcats are down like forty-some-odd points. Poor Troy, gets fouled, and the anxiety is getting to him. Gabriella stands up and sing-screams his name, "TROOOOOOOOOOOOOYYYYYYYYY," and singingly (is that a word?) Troy informs her that right now, he can hardly breathe. Gabriella sings back, "you can do it, just know that I believe."

Troy sings back, "and that's all I really need," and proceeds to help lead the team to victory. Do little girls need to think that they're the main inner strength of a jock? Do girls dream of being a man's sole/main motivation in everything?

"He's winning the game for me!" Ummm ... bullshit. His focus is on the game, his mind is as far away from you as the moon is from the earth. Your support and/or belief changes the outcome of a sporting event not one iota. Do we really need to put the smallest inkling of an idea like this into impressionable kids' heads? Adult women thinking shit like this is bad enough.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

How facebook kicked myspace's ass, and other tidbits

Myspace used to be cool. It was customizable, so the need to create your own personal web page to put up your bio, resume, personal pics of you and the family, and your trunk novel, was over. It could all be put on myspace, for free.

You could connect to old friends and new, never having open the possibility of losing touch with someone because of a change in email. If your best friend in kindergarten kept up with their myspace page, you had a permanent connection to him or her.

Myspace kicked facebook’s ass in terms of popularity, too. Facebook was cryptic, hard to use and not self explanatory like myspace. Besides, everyone you knew was on myspace. There was no need to maintain TWO social networking sites. Many had accounts with both, but ignored facebook. Facebook eventually gained some ground with college kids wanting to separate themselves from high school students. I’m of the opinion that college kids only liked facebook because it was college trendy. I wouldn’t be surprised if the marketing department at facebook paid –er, donated, to college departments to promote facebook, maybe even requiring that students set up a facebook account. Mind you, I fear being sued so I’m definitely not making this allegation. I’m merely saying I wouldn’t be surprised if this make-believe story were true.

Myspace was riding the superior-in-every-way wave, much like Microsoft did before the internet became popular. Then came the media reports. Pedophiles were using myspace to find children to have sex with. I never actually heard of someone having sex with a child as a result of myspace, but there were loads of law enforcement officials saying that they caught many a child molester having accounts online and having children on their friends list. Suddenly, it became quite unpopular for adults to have myspace pages. It was obvious that myspace was fighting that stigma by featuring comedians, novelists, musicians and other artists on their pages. They had some success at keeping their popularity, for awhile, and it grew as a marketing tool for celebs promoting their next project.

What did it in for myspace, you ask? The fricken Mob Wars bullshit application. Before anyone starts accusing, I’ve earned the right to call it bullshit after becoming a number one capo with billions in the bank and owning more beach front casinos than the U.S. actually has of coastal real estate. Every surf and turf restaurant, surf board and bikini retail shop, and sail boat rental store in the country would have to close down to make room for my 5 star casino, but what do I care, I’m the “gahdfahduh”. I’ll kill ‘em all, it’s just business.

In the mob wars and mafia apps, you grew strength and could only win battles by having a larger family. People addicted to the game had no choice but to make friends with complete and total strangers. I found this requirement super odd; myspace was now encouraging kids to make friends with potential child pee-pee lickers. To use the appropriate internet lingo, WTF? Myspace converted itself from being a social networking site, to being a gaming site and in the process, opening the pedophile portal. They pulled it off it quick, too. Suddenly, what was supposed to be friend’s bulletins was nothing but inundated notes by complete strangers bragging about their new condo being built, or their plea that you join their mob. Join as you like, but that didn’t stop the flood of bulletins. Now, I’m not keeping up with friends, not finding out that the kid I shared my Oreos with in elementary school’s favorite bar drink is some weird Goldschlager and Peach Schnapps concoction. All I see when I log in is whiney pleas for me to join their crew. Something I’m pretty sure isn’t done in the real life cosanostra (I say that with authority too, I’ve seen the Godfather trilogy dozens of times).

Personally, after realizing the monotony of the game, I removed the app, and deleted the 200+ friends I’d had purely for the sake of the game. But even then, my regular friends seemed to stop posting bulletins and blogs, and the only proof I saw that they still actively visited their myspace page was their “please join my mob” bulletins.

So now, facebook is the big boy on the block. As a nerd, I see a war coming. Not a conventional war, mind you, nor one involving a gangster app that lets you virtually chop your coworker into bits with a machete. A war of the social networking sites. I’m reminded a lot of the instant messaging “wars”. First, there was ICQ, followed by AIM, then Yahoo joined in, and eventually, Johnny-come-lately, also known as Microsoft. Some downloaded and used all instant messaging software, but some got fed up and stopped using them altogether (Dad!). Then the consolidating software arrived, that let you use them all through one interface. None ruled supreme. Right now, there’s myspace, facebook, yahoo360, tagged, twitter, yearbook, plaxo, and others. Microsoft will have one out soon, no doubt.