Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Make Like a Banana...

So right now I’m stuck in the middle of relationship battle between my roommate, Dan, and our new acquaintance as of this semester, who will remain nameless. Well... she kinda needs a name, so I will call her Sarah. ... Oh crap. Her name really is Sarah. Oh well. ... Dan is formerly known in this blog as the ‘know-it-all roommate’ (This is not at all derrogitory. He really does know it all. And by 'all' I mean a lot of things. And by 'a lot' I mean one thing. He knows how to banter.) and there is a rather dapper picture of the guy somewhere among the September posts.

(Also, Sarah may also be referred to as Shara… simply because she wanted to make sure we all know her name is Sara with an H. Kinda like Bret with two T’s or Jenny with an I. Or Caroline with a K… and a double R… and a double L… and a Y… and then, guess what, a double N. Seriously? Karrollynn? Why not just make it easy for us all and double up all the letters. That way the vowels don’t feel left out. Kkaarroollyynn. And then add a silent E on the end just to screw us all up again. I just found the name for my 14th daughter. )

Long story short: they hit it off, she made the first move, he was turned off because she made the first move, I was dragged along as the 5th wheel (aka the odd man out, the spare tire, the baker’s dozen [the box only has room for 12 donuts… why in the world would the baker make 13 and call it his dozen?]), she got mad because he didn’t respond favorably. He was passive, she was aggressive, and I was apprehensive. He wanted to make things normal, she wanted to make out, and I wanted to make like lightning and bolt.

This has gone on for several weeks… basically, she wants to vex my roommate. (Now, I bring this slight variation from a line in Kate and Leopold… mostly because I like that movie. And I really hope that one day, when I jump off a bridge to my assured icy doom, the swirling, cold blackness turns into a time-bending vortex that sends me to another place in time. Like Canada in the late 1800’s. I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t care if I carried a midget around in my backpack. I’d cut little holes in the bottom for his little legs and I’d call him Tyrell and feed him Maria cookies. )

Anyways… so I’m dragged along on their little excursions (which have included the movie theater… and the movie theater). Which is fine. Because I can, for about an hour and half, forget that I’m even there. So after Hancock and Wall-e (oh and… Shara paid for my Wall-e ticket because I only had a dollar… in change. Dan didn’t want to break his twenty) we come to a recent conversation between Shara and me. She had previously commented on how Wall-e was our first date. (I’m so glad that I treat all unfamiliar or uncomfortable comments as sarcasm. One of my best defense mechanisms to date.)

Shara -Well, how's life eeevaaa?

Bart -Why am I Eva?

Shara-Would you rather be walle? or the fat president?

Bart-Eva is a girl. Why in the world would I want to be a girl robot?

Shara-Girls are way rad, that's why. Besides, i would let you call me walllleee.

Bart-But I'm not a girl... and why would I call you walle? You're not a boy. Walle is obviously a boy robot.

S-Eva is way hotter so i assigned you the name. That's all.

B-So… when you think of me... you think of a sleek, sexy girl robot?

S-Well, yes. Is that a bad thing?

B-I guess that depends on who you ask. If you ask me... I'd say YES.
Does that not even seem slightly backwards to you?

S-nahhh. i'm just being silly. i don't think of you as a girl.

B-Are you sure?

S-Yeah i'm almost positive.

B-Are you HIV positive?

S-ha did you know?

B-It's one of those things you just notice... eye boogers, peed pants… HIV.

S-Crap i hope i don't have all three of those...

B-Plus its really hard to hide the fact you have HIV when you're sitting right next to someone... especially in movie theaters... people with HIV seem to glow in the dark.

S-Oh yeah? I'm sure that made you uncomfortable...

B-Well you know how you said it was our first date? It was actually our second.
It was you and Dan's first.

S-it was our second? How so?

B-If you look at two factors... body placement and conversational dialogue. I sat next to you at both movies and participated in small talk/chatter both times. Dan didn’t sit by you the first time, and didn’t really talk to you. Remember how you got mad for two weeks because of that?

S-ooooh yeah...

B-Plus, I was scammed into going to both movies... so i really think of our time together as forced togethernessism.

S-how were you scammed into it? he didn't tell you i would be there or something?

B-I’m a guy. When a roommate asks me: do you want to go to a movie? I automatically know there is some ulterior motive for such a question… usually it’s a girl. So, by default, I'm automatically assigned the role of backup or wingman... whether I want to go or not.

And to think I was in the middle of a baseball game.

S-Wow i wonder if you could say anything else to make me feel any better about the whole situation. I don't really see why he needs a backup, but i guess i am pretty mean and terrifying.

B-From what i can tell...

I don't know about you, but all of this has inspired me to continue my non-existent journey to nowhere in no time with no one. I think the semi-correct approach will be to go backwardsly onward and downsidedly upward in my socially inept hiatus of anything that could be considered 'constructive relationship building'. And to think I was in the middle of a baseball game.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I Hate Halloween

Now why in the world would I do something like that? For a whole evening I get to be whatever I want to be. A pirate. A ninja. Pee Wee Herman's bike. (Really. I would be the coolest kid on the street if I had his bike... but to actually be his bike... that would be beyond any kids wildest dreams. I would be able to fly. And I'd have streamers.)

Then I get to walk around outside... past my bed time... to houses that have their porch lights on. I knock on the door and say 'Trick or Treat?'. And then people give me candy.

When I was a kid, candy was used as a reward for having the 'cleanest room of the week' (pick any full-size candy bar). Sweets were used as a prize for completing my chore chart (Little Debbie, anyone?). And snacks were used as incentives for spending a day in the public education system and surviving an hour and a half bus ride home (graham crackers and frosting!).

And now that I think about it, even our public schools bribed kids with food. Our school district used a free Personalized Pan Pizza from Pizza Hut to get kids to read books. If you read the most pages in your class during the month, you win. I won... a lot.

Junk food was so valuable that I had a personal stash of candy bars that I kept in a plastic, green pencil box. I hid my green box of loot in the box spring of my bed.

I kept this box full. Twix, Snickers, Reese's. It was neatly organized with several layers of chocolatey goodness. Sometimes, part of my $20/month allowance was spent replenishing its contents. (Mostly it was spent on baseball cards. Occasionally, on G.I. Joes.) I'd buy two bars. One for the ride home, and one for my box.

This was, of course, after making sure I had enough for a pack of smok-- ing hot, brand new cards. Packs costed anywhere between $1.50 - $3.00, depending on the quality and number of cards. Some packs had 6 cards. Some packs had a Sam's Club inside. aka enough cards to be considered 'buying in bulk'. I usually saved up to buy the 50-100 card Jumbo multi-packs. My thinking: Why settle for a one in six chance of getting a silver-plated, holographic, Fleer Ultra Upper Deck Nolan Ryan, when you can get six identical, brown, paper-back, Donruss Tony Penas? The more cards you have, the cooler you are. Quantity versus quality isn't taught until 11th grade. I'm ten.

So when I go out candy hunting this year, and fill my pillow case with 12 cavities, I'm going to try and avoid all the girls who use this holiday as an excuse to be a skank. You, girls, are my enemies in war. I will plunder. I will pillage. And your booty will be my spoils. (Still talkin' candy here.)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

We Are But Men... ROCK!

Football: a sport of grit, strength, and speed. A game of passion, determination, and perspiration. Starting with Friday Night Lights and continuing though Monday Night Football, you’ll never find four consecutive days with more hard-hitting, body-crunching, bone-splitting action than you will during autumn weekends on the grassy, green gridiron.

It’s a man’s sport. (Which man? Where is that man? What makes him a man? Or a man a man? Am I a man? What about He-man, merman, or woman? Man! ) You don’t just wake up one day and decide to play football. You have to be a man. A manly man.

Or you could be a wannabe man and wake up in your bed, alone (just like yesterday… and the day before… for the last 25 years), and tell your skinny, white, boney reflection that it's time to become a man. But without having the advantage of big, grumbly American Gladiators around, you decide to take matters into your weak, feeble, can-barely-lift-ten-pounds hands. You will search for your manhood.

After a scrumptious meal of eggs and toast, you put on your jacket and thank your mom as she ties your hood. You almost coolishly stroll out to your ’81 Honda (‘almost’ because you really don’t know what coolishly means, you think you heard Nicolas Cage use that word in Gone in 60 Seconds, but you’re not sure of that either because you’re not allowed to watch PG-13 movies) and run your hand across the hail-damaged hood. You then proceed to putter out of your neighbor-hood with the windows down blaring Boyz N da Hood.

From Main Street to University Avenue you scour the freshly mowed lawns and littered parks in search of man-life. (Is that Robin Hood?) And then you see it. You had only faintly heard of such a place before today… (mostly in chat rooms and blogs) but this was beyond anything any video game designer could… well… uh… design. The University intramural fields. (No, but really… Robin Hood wears tights, right? ‘Cause I swear… )

You never thought the uncoordinated and unathletic would one day share the same field as the speedy and agile. But somehow, in this magical world of flag football, the competition is leveled out. There are fat, old married guys, washed-up ex-high school ‘All-Americans’, and cocky, eighteen year old punks.

And there you stand… one of the uncoordinated and unatheletic, about to continue your journey from wannabe man to man. Your path: Football. (this wasn’t quite football… kind of pansyish actually, especially with the ‘no contact’ rule…) And, in your eyes, nothing could be more manly than prancing around like a fairy with a colorful belt around your waist playing grab-a**. (I mean, uh… grabbing flowers… uh, er… flags).

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Black Michael Phelps

You know him as Shaq, The Diesel, Daddy, and Shaq Fu. The Big Cactus, The Big Shaqtus, The Big Galactus. Wilt Chamberneezy, The Big Baryshnikov, and Shaq Albert. Yes, Shaquille O’Neal is a man of many names. But my personal favorite, which just barely edged out the runner-up Kazaam, (and if you haven’t seen the movie Kazaam, you MUST) is also the most recent: The Black Michael Phelps.

I’ll have to admit, I laughed pretty hard when I first heard it. But as it rolled around in my head for a few minutes, the thought kept coming back to me: MTV Deathmatch: Shaquille O’Neal vs Michael Phelps. Lets get it on! No, but really… comparing them seems absurd.


First of all, ‘The Big Aristotle’ is black. This automatically separates them by eons and schwartamuhranacks (This is a word I just made up. It means: lots more than ‘a lot’.) Everyone knows black people are better athletes, better dancers, and better singers. In his prime, ‘The Big Elvis’ could probably sing, dance, run, and jump among the best of them. And even though Michael had a lot of practice singing the National Anthem in Beijing this summer, I don’t see him coming out with an album anytime soon.

‘Big Shaq Daddy’, on the other hand, has been rapping since 1993 and has released five albums (not counting compilations or soundtracks). Two of which were Gold certified by the RIAA. What’s even more amazing is that more than one million people bought his debut album, Shaq Diesel. One million plus! That’s right, ‘Osama Bin Shaq’ has gone platinum. Hey, Mike… call me the next time you win a Platinum medal.

Now, obviously, Michael Phelps is the best swimmer in the world, galaxy, universe… um, ever. (This includes past, present, and future swimmers, from other galaxies and universes, and spans accross all time continuums and the intergalactical existence of space. He's that good.) I was among the millions jumping and shouting at the TV during his come-from-behind victory in the 100m butterfly for his 7th gold. (Not to overshadow Jason Lezak’s improbable run-down of the Aussie, Alain Bernard, in the anchor leg of the 4X100 m freestyle relay, which kept Phelp’s hopes for 8 gold alive.) And never have I witnessed a more rigorous domination than what I saw from him in swimming those 17 events in 9 days. Truly it was an awe-inspiring, gutsy performance by one of our generations greatest atheletes. So how will the greatest Olympian of all time fare in a 100 meter race against ‘M.D.E. (most dominant ever)’?

Yeah, um, never mind. I’ve decided that there’s really no need to even attempt to put on such a spectacle. The only way 'The Land Shark’ could beat Phelps swimming, is if the pool was only ten feet long. One full extension from the 7’1” ‘Big Fella’ and the race is over. Hmmmm… that gives me an idea.

Shaq Attack vs. Phelps: a best-of-three, winner-take-all series. It will take place in a neutral arena, (We’ll say Mexico because Canada would give ‘The Big Deporter’ an advantage. He could get tips from Steve Nash.) and the two competitors will wager twenty-three items of extreme importance and value.

Phelps will put his 21 gold medals and 2 bronze medals, from the ’04 and ‘08 Olympics and the ’07 World Championships, up against ‘The Yellow Submarines’:
4 NBA Championship rings,
1 NBA MVP award,
1 NBA Rookie of the Year award,
3 NBA Finals MVP awards,
2 All-Star MVP awards,
1 FIBA World Championship gold medal,
1 Olympic gold medal,
1 High School state title ,
1 framed Bachelor’s degree,
1 online Masters in Business Administration,
5 RIAA gold certified albums,
1 RIAA Platinum* certified album,
and 1 gold-plated, honorary, U.S. Deputy Marshall's badge.

(*According to the Barttimesnow Gold, Platinum, and Other Fine Artifacts Committee, the platinum album is the equivalent of 4 Olympic gold medals. Thus, compensating for any perceived ‘lack of value’ of ‘Dr. Shaq’s high school state title, bachelor’s degree, and master’s degree. Thus, keeping the bet even at 23 items per contestant.)

The three events will take place in this order: the 100 meter freestyle, the 10 foot freestyle, and the 5 bazillion meter backstroke in a pool of Jello. May the best Superman win.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Thirsty for Thursday?

Thursday- the precursor for the weekend. As a general rule, if you have a good Thursday, you’re bound to have a good weekend. But Thursday usually flexes its I’m-still-a-week-day muscle, while staring you down like ‘Nitro’ from American Gladiators. There’s nothing that dampens your weekend-fever like a dose of Thursday to remind you that you still have eight hours of Friday to deal with before that five o’clock whistle.

It looks like this Thursday is turning out to be a clone of the previous two: a five dollar foot-long from Subway and the company of Thursday night basketball on TNT. As you’re about to settle into your usual crease in the couch, you remember that last week a girl invited you to a fondue party. Your know-it-all roommate thinks you should go. His suggestion brings two thoughts to your mind: will there be food? And will there be a girl? (And yes, you really asked yourself those two questions).

The apartment is spewing people out onto the balcony and down the stairs. Already sweating from boarding twelve blocks to get there, (you thought it might look cool if you walked into the party with a long-board in your hand, and now that you think about it, you could have driven and then walked in with a long-board in your hand, mostly because you don’t board) you step up to the muddled entry way. The heat from the sardinely packed bodies oozes against your face. You take one last breath of fresh air and step in.

Like an eel navigating the murky deep, you make your way past unfamiliar faces and damp bodies to plant yourself in a power stance in the center of the room. (Okay, so you’re slightly off-centered. But a quick step to the right will change all that.) A friend introduces you to a friend of a friend's friend. You can’t quite catch her name because of all the noise, but as you lean in to reassert your ears, you notice: she’s not too tall, not too short (both of which are extremely intimidating in their own respect), she has long, dark hair and dark eyes, and there is something intoxicating about that smile.

The conversation staggers itself between continual traffic and ongoing introductions. You decide that the guy with her is either a relative or a recent acquaintance. (Relative because of the reassuring, comforting gestures and glances that could only be given by a brother or cousin in the midst of an unfamiliar crowd, and acquaintance because of the mutually absent dedication to keep the others’ attention. And honestly, he's got nothin' on you.) After a few brief moments of awkward silence in a less than silent room, you decide it’s finally time...

(I wanted to apologize for two things: first, for not having finished this story. Its really kinda lame because (spoiler alert!) I end up hitting it off with this girl but don't get her number. Maybe I'm a pansy... or I really am that much of an idiot. And second, for constantly referring to American Gladiators. Well maybe not. I like Nitro.)