Archive for January, 2011


if you only read one ransom note this year, make it mine

You guys, I am totally addicted to ABC’s hit series the Bachelor. There’s nothing I enjoy more than popping in a DiGiorno, getting into my comfiest sweatpants, dimming the lights, and gluing myself to the TV, completely enthralled as adorable real-estate magnate Brad Womack whittles down the candidates each week from a field of beautiful women in search of his soul mate and partner for life. So, you can only imagine how frustrating it was last month when my boss announced that we were temporarily gonna start working late on Mondays to catch up from the holidays. The first Monday, I got home five minutes after it started, and found I had completely set the DVR wrong! So I watched the 55 minutes left in the episode, then stayed up till ABC finally put it online at 2am, all to see the first five minutes. But you know me: I wound up staying awake and re-watching the whole thing! I was helpless to resist Brad’s charms!

Needless to say, the following week I made extra sure to set my DVR correctly, and even gave my neighbor my house key, so he could come over and make sure there hadn’t been like a power outage or something to prevent it from recording. I also paid him $20 to record it on his DVR at his house, just in case. You never can be too sure, am I right, ladies? Good thing the recording went off without a hitch, too, because I missed the whole episode by several hours, since I stayed at the office after everyone had gone home, totally engrossed by the 15 or so blogs, fansites, and message boards devoted to the Bachelor that I read, edit, and moderate daily.

The third week, I sneaked out the bathroom window so I could make sure I got home in time to see the entire episode. Unfortunately, I hit my boss’ car on the way out of the parking lot and didn’t leave a note because I was in such a hurry. I had planned to tell him first thing the next morning, but before I could, he called me into his office with some cops and showed me a video of the accident that had been captured by a nearby security camera, then fired me on the spot. By the end of the month, I was turning tricks on the streets to get my Bachelor fix, which I needed more than ever since other areas of my life weren’t going so well. As soon as I could scrape together $40, I’d run straight to a rundown apartment where my pimp would let me sit in a darkened room and watch the Bachelor for 5 minutes. Just long enough to get the shakes to stop so I could get back on the corner. It became a $600 a day habit!

I do admit, at times it has gotten in the way of my personal relationships as well. My friends roll their eyes a bit when I go on babbling incoherently about Brad’s sexy pecs and amazing smile, and the deep, intractable knowledge that he and he alone can understand my most closely held hopes and dreams. My boyfriend says I should enter rehab for my dependence to the Bachelor. Like he has any room to talk; he’s practically a crack addict for his hobby. Of course, his hobby is smoking cocaine.


only built 4 wisconsinite linx

At first I didn’t see the point of establishing my own religion. I mean, sure, there were tax incentives, but how was I gonna find disciples willing to follow a doctrine I was making up in real time? I was a couple years out of school and having a hard time settling on a career path, though, so I quit my job at Catfish King and went for it. And despite my earlier misgivings, my new religion got off to an exciting start.

My first objective was to attract an affluent flock, which I accomplished by advertising in the local polo club newsletter. I then locked in my new adherents with flashy sermons asking them why, if they wouldn’t put shitty 87-octane gasoline into their luxury sedans, would they settle for putting lesser religions into their souls? (in truth, very few of my metaphors made any sense beyond telling the gathered faithful how great my new religion was, in as unspecific terms as possible.) Once confident in their loyalty, I began subtly undermining their collective self-worth in order to increase their reliance on me. It didn’t take much, just a few sly jabs like screaming at them through a megaphone that they all smelled like a gross blanket from the garage that a raccoon had just given birth on.

It felt oddly liberating to disconnnect from any grounding in reality, as I made an escalating series of promises that pledged an increasingly outlandish picture of the afterlife. Any guilt I may have felt by making these false claims was offset by the realization that my followers truly enjoyed the organizational simplicity of being able to divide the next world into two categories: devotees would be treated to a millenia-long Pink Floyd concert replete with an image of  Jesus shooting a spectacular laser light show from his stigmata, while heretics would be condemned to an eternity of Supertramp rock blocks, to be interrupted by periodic breaks to shit pure blood for 40 days.

For the first time, I had a community that accepted me and loved me. But more than anything, I wanted power. Not just so I could bend people to my will and shape the world to my liking, but also so that my Hoverboard would work on water, and I panicked once I felt my influence over my parish beginning to wane. Under mounting pressure to produce a nonexistent holy text I had been telling the Family about for months, I staged a combined diversionary tactic and morale-boosting exercise, gathering all the congregants together one night to teepee our cross-town rivals in Falun Gong. Then, ecstatic with righteous fury, we egged the B’nai B’rith and ding-dong-dashed the First United Methodist Church. It was a glorious night, but one that ultimately proved quite costly as we made some formidable enemies. Within days, an unflattering piece on 20/20 brought a lot of undesired attention from several law enforcement agencies.

Predictably, it all went downhill fast. One by one, my wives left me as my economic prospects dimmed after the investigations. I couldn’t hold down a job because no matter how far back in the kitchen they’d put me, it was just a matter of time before someone recognized me while taking out the garbage, and then I’d be run out of town. But in losing everything, I have been freed from desire and given a fresh start. I’m excited to be living off my wits again, and enjoying the fruits of my cunning. In fact, I notice you’ve been eyeing this delicious morsel I’m eating, friend. No, it’s not one of those gross-out novelty gummi rats on a stick from the makers of mini-jawbreakers made to look like eyeballs. This is the real thing, baby. I got traps all over the city, enough to keep me fed for as long as I want. If I didn’t know any better, I’d swear I had acheived success at something like this in a past life.


the last dougie

Gather round, everyone. At long last, I hereby call this press conference to order, now that the reporter from Cat Fancy is here. As has been reported ad nauseam, a lot of  speculation has been made about what to be done with my body after I die, and this announcement will finally put some of that to rest. Don’t pardon the pun, either; I meant the shit out of it.

First off, I want to address the funeral proceedings. I would like for the service to be a celebration of my life, but it would be a lot more satisfying to leave an unfillable void in the lives of those I touched, so I humbly ask that if it’s not too inconvenient for everyone, to please refrain from ever putting the pieces of your lives back together once I’m gone. As for a venue, try and remember that my adult life is characterized chiefly by a desire to avoid church. Burial is out, as it would be disrespectful to the many hours on earth I spent watching zombie movies. Cremation seemed like a good option until I began the intimidating process of selecting a good place to spread my ashes, since all my favorite sports teams now play in shopping malls. Sending my remains into space wasn’t terribly appealing either, as I don’t believe that space travel is possible, thanks to a very persuasive VHS tape my pot dealer showed me which explained that no craft could possibly make it out of the Van Allen radiation belts, meaning that the moon landing was obviously faked. So, without any further ado, I’d like to announce that I’m taking my talents to donating my body to science.

That’s right. I want to be given an unflattering, almost belittling name like Ralph, as in, “Listen up, students, I’d like to introduce you to Ralph. He’s kinda quiet, but you’ll be spending a lot of time getting to know him this semester”. I want medical students to craft elaborate hypotheses as to the origins of my many scars, correctly deducing once they dissect my liver that alcohol factors heavily into several of the more prominent ones. I would like very much for some smart alecky wisecracker, a budding Benjamin “Hawkeye” Pierce perchance, to wonder aloud what I was thinking when I chose that particular tattoo on that particular location of my body. And lastly, I want to be a silent witness to that late-night breaking point when two of the med students finally submit to the pressure that has been mounting all semester and have hot spontaneous nerd sex in the lab, pausing from their passionate kissing only for the few seconds it takes for the guy to pull the sheet over my eyes, eliciting some demure giggling from the girl.

Sure, donating one’s body to science may not be for everyone, but to me it’s all worth it to know that the research conducted on my body could finally contribute to a cure, so that future generations won’t have to suffer through the slightly puffy nipples that plagued me throughout middle school. Look, I don’t want to freak you out, I’m just trying to make sure that my wishes are known. Let me reassure you, I’m gonna be around a long time, if for no other reason than to shut up all the haters who are conspiring against me even as I type this. For example, this guy behind me honking his horn, who is probably just jealous that he doesn’t have anything better to do than signal before a lane change.


gargyle socks

Great Caesar’s Ghost, young man! What kinda raggedy-ass shape have you let yourself get into this off-season, anyhow? Your muscles have lost that healthy glow that can intimidate a pile of wood into splitting itself, but that’s nothing that can’t be rectified with a few intensive physical conditioning sessions.  Why, In 1938, I shook off polio, consumption, diphtheria, the mumps, dropsy, and a tough bout with trench mouth to win second runner-up for Mister Muscles of Broward County, and I’ll let a poisonous snake get into Barbara Stanwyck’s garter belt before I let your potential get derailed by what appears to be nothing more than a mild case of cachexy. Now, this state of affairs will likely require some emergency drastic measures, but I can’t have one of my prized ath-a-letes walking around without the plump, hearty look of a champion.  By Sally Jessy Rafael’s Spectacles, we’ve got to get some color back in your cheeks and some pep and vitality in your step.

Look lively, young man! First off, I want you to lift this barbell up behind your head, while I cram a forkful of scrambled eggs into your mouth between each repetition. That’s it, put your back into it. Then we’re gonna put a rubber suit and some ankle weights on you and get you into the steam room, and you’re not coming out till you’ve done three hundred jumping jacks and polished off five strawberry milkshakes. What you need is a healthy, rotund belly to store reserves of strength in! Sweet Moses Christ, son- would you listen to that wheezing? I’ll bet your lungs are as soft and uncalloused as the silken hands of a goddamn dressmaker- I’m putting you on a strict regimen of Chesterfields, and I won’t hear no two ways about it. If I catch you outside of this field house running around with all your buddies at the malt shop without a Zippo in your pocket and a smoke in your mouth, there’s gonna be hell to pay. And none of this pansy-ass filtered hogwash, neither. I wanna see no fewer than fifty robust puffs by the time you hit the showers.

Now, not that this will be much of a concern, given your current pale, scrawny form, but stay away from women for a while, Valentino. Even if you’re on bottom, lying there like a dead fish, seemingly exerting no effort at all as you let ol’ Leggy Lois or Chesty Clara do all the work, the physical act of sexual congress invariably leads to a case of weakened legs, and trust me; you’d be well-advised to save your strength for the medicine ball and the kettlebells. If the temptation ever seems too difficult not to yield to, here’s a stick for you to bite down on until those urges go away. There, now you’re on the path back to your old strapping self. You’ve shown equal amounts of both hustle and moxie out there today, and we’ll have you back at your fighting weight in no time. Here, let me rub some of this liniment on those muscles before the ache sets in. Don’t ask any questions; just look up at the ceiling and try to think happy thoughts.

January 2011