Pathetic

Shit.

Yesterday I almost shit myself.

After forgoing the option to take the subway home in favor of a 2 mile walk back home, I found myself running the last six blocks like a penguin on meth as I forced my sphincter closed. Having only eaten ramen and cereal all day, I knew my toilet expedition would be sloppy, and I wasn’t excited about the possibility of that sloppiness happening in my pants.

Using one hand to manipulate the keys needed to open my apartment door and the other to hold my buttcheeks shut, I frantically danced the dance of distraction to try to trick my mind into forgetting that I had liquid poo attempting to fall out of my ass. I swung open the four doors needed to get to the bathroom leaving keys and clothes on the floor in my wake and found shit falling out as I began my descent to the toilet. I had made it!

As I sat, letting waste drain out of my body, hoping that no intruders would take this opportunity to walk into my apartment as all the doors were still wide open, I thought what would have happened if one of my roommates had been taking a shower or had their own waste removal process happening at that time.

This blog entry would be a lot more interesting, that’s for sure.

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Attention Whoring

The Wrong Attention

I have an enormous pimple on my neck that looks like a red button that when undone opens a secret passage to my windpipe. I also went to get a haircut today. I replied to a free haircut ad in craigslist so that I didn’t have to spend the money I didn’t have.

Out of the subway, I found myself forced to walk through a sudden and long-lasting downpour. My eyebrows pursed to keep out the rain, and suddenly I looked like the saddest person in New York City. As the only one on the street without a hat or umbrella, I had long rivers of water running down my face where my hair that was too long connected with my face. This just happened to be exactly where tears would also run if I were to be crying my way through the streets of Manhattan. The crunched face and confused look of being lost, only served to make me look more depressed.

I finally found the hairdresser with my hair looking like a drowned spider sitting atop my head. The house music, stylish hairstyles and lime green tables told me I was in the wrong place, but the address told me I was in the right place. My hair stylist took me to a back room so that I could get dried off and change into a haircutting gown. I sat waiting, staring at myself in the mirror not realizing that I was supposed to find my stylist once I was done drying my hair. Why a changing room was necessary, I still don’t know.

As I looked around me, I realized I was the only person there not from Williamsburg or Upper West Side. I was also the only one whose clothes weren’t worth at least a weeks worth of salary. I was also the only one whose clothes were wrinkled and dirty because I had forgotten to do laundry the day before. I was also the only one who had an enormous pimple extruding from my neck.

I had spent that morning squeezing my pimple and wiping out the juices it left behind with a tissue paper. It had only served to make the area around redder and more noticeable. I chose the other route and pretended I didn’t exist, and neither did my pimple as I sat patiently watching a student grimace as he chopped my hair. My mind turned to the future. In the future I would have to know whether or not to tip this man who was giving me a free haircut. I desperately searched for people finishing up their hair services to see if they were exchanging money. I found two souls just conversing after their curly adventure into head enlarging. They seemed ready to go and I stared at the customer’s hands as they moved around in her pockets. I’m sure she thought I was just creepily surveying her crotch. Finally the customer was ready to depart and the the two hugged and then she left. Hugged? They must be friends. Friends don’t need to tip, they’re on a totally different level than me. Or she’s not a friend, and you’re supposed to hug after a haircut here. I’m fine with that, but if that’s not the policy and I go in for a hug instead of a tip things could get awkward.

I turned my attention back to the present and began playing with my hands underneath my full body bib. I silently laughed at what others might perceive as me playing with myself while a tattooed man plays with my hair. My laughs turned audible when I scratched my knee and I had to stop.

As I left, I assumed everyone was staring at me, waiting for my next screw up to come. Was it going to be a fashion faux-pa or an uncomfortable social exit, or was it simply going to be my gross pimple oozing as I left the building. As much as I like attention, pimple-attention is no fun.

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Indignant, Media, My favorites, Socialism

A Defense of Self Deprecation

I was in a bar in Seattle when I turned 22. This was a half art museum – half bar setup. My fellow bar mates were an eclectic group of hostel goers from around the world, most of whom had no idea that it was my birthday. Sipping on my local lager, I approached one of the few members of our group I had yet to talk to. The Australian hipster with the short hair to match her short skirt seemed in a daze staring forward at one of the museum’s attractions. It was a samurai sword instruction video with the sound turned off and remixed to include slower and faster motion views of metal slicing through pig carcasses.

I followed her gaze for a minute then turned to her with what I thought was a really brilliant joke: “You have these videos at home?”

Her response was “No” and a look that questioned my sanity.

There may have been a cultural/language barrier, but I tend to think all Australians are stupid because of this girl. This is not an assumption I can make about our other English speaking friends across the pond. My entire west coast trip was spent with the less dentally inclined people of our world. That is to say that while I wasn’t pulling and British birds, my flat would have been full of fierce fannies. I think. I’m not really sure what I just said.

The female former empire-ers were my only friends in the multi-cultural world of hostel jumping and there was reason. The female part was because I frighten easily at demands to chug and find myself attempting to change the subject when asked to brag about the last lady I snogged. The Brit part is because their sensibilities toward humor are more like mine (aka: objectively better). This is a fact I have rediscovered through constant television research.

With the outside planning on getting colder, I’ve been figuring out ways to make my bed a place I never need to leave. So, crackers and cream cheese becomes a meal and I’ve found new ways to stream television on my computer. My success at finding humorous half hours of life has been impressive. Beyond the well known adventures of Ricky Gervais, the Brits have been churning out hit after hit after hit without accolades from us American swine.

Where am I going with this?

If you skip ahead to 2:42 you hear that Beck’s true fear is of our television becoming similar to Britain’s. And O’Reilly’s fears are that we turn into Sweden. (Go to 2:45)

I’d love to move up the quality of life index, the human development index, life expectancy, and in humor.

This all stems from the overall fear of self deprecation. The one thing that capitalism undeniably puts a halt to is admitting failure. Capitalism is a system that feeds the need to prove yourself bigger, better, and stronger than the competition, and in this case the competition has become other countries like Britain, Sweden, Canada, and France. Our stubbornness in assuming we are the best and changing would admit weakness has left us weaker than these countries in technology, living, and, most importantly,  humor. This is something I will not stand. Let us admit our faults – self-deprecation can go a long way, maybe even lead to universal health care.

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Horny, Indignant, Selfish

Two Female Fantasies I Wrote on the LIRR

1.

I’ve always been sort of turned on by the idea of banging/dating a female basketball player. It’s not because I’m sexually fascinated by the concept of screwing someone taller – it is in no way related to a shallow sexual fantasy. Female basketball players are people who are socially competent (they have to be as basketball is a team sport that involves communication), but for some reason, typically height, were relegated to the unglamorous side of the social bubble. Cheerleaders are popular, soccer players are sexy, even the drama queen could be a man killer, but shooting free throws never got you to score. It’s not that I want to pummel my cock into a tight virgin pussy, quite the opposite, but the idea of someone who didn’t get laid when they wanted to is attractive to me for egotistical reasons, and basketball players are never the subject of heterosexual male fantasy even though they are not typically unattractive.

Secondly, I like the feel of athletic shorts and a girl in a basketball jersey is very attractive. No other uniform is quite this sexy. A softball uniform is the least flattering, skin-covering, dull colored outfit in the world, while the basketball jersey is like a n invitation with its ease of access of all parts, all just being below an elastic band. Unsurprisingly, I enjoy the idea of less physical work leading to more physical pleasure.

Lastly, the relationship fantasies that go along with basketball are fun for me. It’s one of the few sports that you can play one on one in. Golf, I suck at, and is very slow and quiet. Tennis, I’m also pretty bad at and all talking is separated by 50 feet and a net, it also tends to be competitive. Basketball is a sport I am halfway decent at, to the point that it would be somewhat competitive if I played basketball with a girl who stopped playing once they reached college or senior year of high school or something. The game can also be uncompetitive as it is easy to forget the score, and there is a lot of physical contact and trash talking. The romantic implications of rejecting her shot only to have her turn around a drain a three in my face as I taunt her about what I would like to do to her mother, to which I respond; “okay, but I do really want to meet your mother” are hornifying. So, if I could meet a girl in athletic shorts who has similar uncomfortable awkwardness about her height and what it made her do, and is willing to have a non-competitive game of trashtalking one-on-one, I think I’d propose.

Probably I’d just think of a reason why she would find me gross to sexually fantasize about.

2.

White girls are given archetypes to follow: Zooey Deschanel, Pam Beasley, Carrie Bradshaw, Tina Fey, Paris Hilton, and Eliot Reed are all white. Girls “relate” to these characters (and by relate, I mean force themselves to be like) because they are women and they define themselves through their womanhood. This is not unusual. We typically relate strongest to the group of people we are a part of that is ost oppressed because we all want to be victims. Barack Obama is half-black yet he identifies as African-American. I identify as Jewish all the time, even though I wasn’t even bar mitzvahed. Most of your friends have referred to themselves as whatever minority they can claim. So devoid of oppressed minorities to identify with, white women identify as women.

I want to be clear that I don’t think this practice of victimization through self-identification is an unhealthy practice. It allows us analyze our actions in order to justify our pitying of ourselves. I always think self-analysis is a positive.

White women copy the formulas for how to lead their lives that are based on male script writers’ sexual fantasies. Women who are of a different race, look to our representations of their race in our culture because it is a more obviously oppressed part of their being., and because non-white races are rarely represented in our media and when they are, they are done so through a strongly patriarchal lens, there are few minority women archetypes. Therefore non-white women are the closest to being unburdened with societal expectations forming their personality. That seems like the right person to be around – one who is who they are.

It’s a good thing black people are good at basketball.

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Attention Whoring, My favorites, Selfish

A Simple List of Demands

I have always dreamed about my wedding. Not because I’m excited to sign away my right to make independent decisions, but because everybody has to pay attention to me (us). I think this is why I look for people who remind me of myself when I go out on my search for sexual/romantic partners – I worry that if somebody is too different than me that they won’t agree to all of my wedding demands. Here are some of those demands:

1. Everybody will walk down the aisle in order to get to their seat.

2. They will walk down in some format that shows their personality (I had this idea way before that stupid youtube wedding dance video that was terribly choreographed).

3. People will be paired up based on who I/we think is the parallel group member in each other’s friend clique.

4. Vows may take longer than an hour.

5. Toasts will take longer than 3 hours.

6. This is because every member of the wedding will have to make a toast in story form.

7. I/we will have multiple outfits for different parts of the wedding.

8. There will be stunt doubles.

9. There may be a fake location that turns into a scavenger hunt to find where the wedding is.

10. There will be an easter egg hunt.

11. No wedding cake – Wedding pie. Multiple layers = multiple flavors.

12. There will be a slideshow with cheesy music displaying pictures from our lives that will then turn into a prediction slide show with snapshots from the wedding included and then snapshots from the future that will first show the demise of our marriage and then edge over into the realm of science fiction with snapshots of the failure of our dystopian governmental system with the arrival of our alien overlords. Also there will be clips of famous oscar winning movies spliced in.

13. I/we will stage a divorce.

14. I would like a pool to be involved.

15. Somebody should be on mescaline.

16. There will be an awards ceremony at the end of the wedding where I/we will give out awards to our wedding enjoyers for best gift, best toast, best dress, best date, best faux-paux, best fake accent, best dance, best hair, creepiest flirt attempt, horniest, most awkward person to show up, person who didn’t get that their invite was just an extension of an olive branch and not actually an invitation, etc.

17. The bride’s friends/family and my friends/family will have to compete in a series of competitions including, but not limited to trivia, 3-on-3 basketball, shuffleboard, ping-pong, fort-building, drinking games, badminton, and a lengthy obstacle course.

18. An Indian/Mexican buffet.

19. One bathroom for the bride and groom, and one bathroom for the rest of the attendants.

20. The bride will be somebody I paid to help me complete this dream and there will be no legally binding marriage occurring that day.

Anybody know someone down for these ideas? Once I/we have the money, I’ll let them propose to me.

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Lazy, My favorites

Busy, Busy

I sit here on my toilet while I type up a new blog entry. Why have I decided to combine these activities? Efficiency. That, and I like the character strings that occur when my fingers clench to provide the equal and opposite reaction to my bowels pushing out a poopy.

I also am looking at Michael Ian Black’s twitter page even though I don’t have a twitter account myself. Why don’t I just sign up so that I can get fed these engrossing two sentence joke/ideas without having to search? I don’t have time to set up an account. That, and if I kept up with MIB everyday than this couldn’t be a more than 1 minute activity, whereas now I can spend nearly ten minutes reading through backlogs of thoughts like: “I really feel like somebody else needs to die for my sins. Just to be safe.”

A lot of you are probably saying, “H2$, you do nothing with your life. You work 6 hrs a week and have no friends, how can you possibly be too busy for anything?” To you I say: “Why are you talking out loud? You realize that this is a blog, and does not provide the opportunity for audible call and response, right? You should probably make sure you are not in a public area because your outburst of harsh criticism of a Scandinavian gnome that lives in your computer might make you look like a crazy person.”

kjlfd;ALSK;DFJA

I’m finished pooping.

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Attention Whoring

Self Obsession (Pt. final)

LincolnBack

Grade: C

This sketch has some hilarious lines and is based on the funny premise of taking the bringing something back idea in SexyBack as some sort of necromancer activity. It was playing on a song just old enough at the time to not be timely or retro funny, which is a strong reason why I think the parody was a surprise (aka funny). Also the choreography was surprisingly tight and interesting. So, why do I give this the mediocre grade of C? Because of why people laughed and liked this sketch. With 10k fully packed with adoring, probably intoxicated college students the actual lyrics of this sketch that tread on history and absurdism in a really interesting and clever way were not heard. Instead people were simply excited that we were singing and dancing, a skill thought, incorrectly, to be tantamount to comedy.

We spent one night fully choreographing and rehearsing that dance number and it took barely any creative energy to do so. The sketch was written during one or two listenings to the song Sexyback. Writing lyrics that sort of fit to the pacing of a somewhat popular song that is a little old is not hard. Moving in an organized fashion repeatedly is not hard. Being funny is hard. As someone who has watched a lot of open mic nights and seen some shitty sketch comedy, it is not an easy skill. The one part of this sketch that was interesting: the devolution of Lincoln becoming not just a freer of slaves but also a power hungry zombie obsessed with sci-fi fantasy movies of the 90s, which becomes interestingly meta as the Abraham Lincoln goes from the person we know from the penny to an absurdist comedian to a stand in for the author and his love of nerdy 90s pop culture, was completely overlooked. People were too busy cheering because they recognized a song that they liked to hear to realize the genius of a zombie Lincoln demanding that there be “waffles every day.”

This sketch would have done better as a video where the lyrics could have been more clear and there could have been visual clues to supplement lines like “harness the wind” and “breed tiger-man.” Instead the visual stimulus was Rhett’s intense dancing power, which is fine and dandy, but I used to see it every party I went to.

Best Actor: The absolute best part of this video is after the sketch ends and the lights go down and come back up. Rhett feels it his duty to bow for a job well done, then realizes the awkwardness of him bowing as though he was the star of a show he was only really featured in the last sketch of and tries to make up for it by bowing with everybody hard core. Just because he thought he was the sole reason for the standing ovation for a split second, I’m going to give this award to Rhett, he obviously thinks he deserves it. Best Line: “Why aren’t there dinosaurs yet?”

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Depressed, Indignant

Power: A Braided Narrative

I have never strived for power. Attention I’ve desired, but power over others seems like a waste. If you are forcing one to do something against their will, then will they truly enjoy it, and will you truly enjoy having made them do it? I wouldn’t.
I stood on one side of the street demanding that my friend come back to my side of the street. We were walking to Kowalski’s at two in the morning and I wanted to walk on the side of the street that I wanted to walk on. This friend of mine was a girl I had no desire to be romantic/intimate/sexual with but knew I was supposed to have all of those desires for. She was a friend that I spent nights with discussing her inability to find the right man, while I joked about my inability to find a woman at all. She was cute, but willing to talk about “boy” stuff with me. I was not quite as attractive, but cutely self-deprecating and would be willing to cry in front of a girl. We were a match made in teen-movie heaven.
During my junior year two of my best friends studied abroad. Without the two people I had spent most hours of the day with in the previous year, I found myself alone waiting for a call from somebody to tell me something interesting to do. One Friday night I sat on my couch with my two roommates watching Scrubs not because we enjoyed the show, but because it was 6 o’clock. I suggested that we call somebody, and while everyone agreed, we couldn’t think of the right person to call. I opened my phone and began calling every female in my addressbook. My intent was to call every male the next day. I blame my lack of following through on the next day’s plans on the first day’s utter failure and not on a misogyny.
As I was finishing my story, she started to walk away. My story was not that bad. It wasn’t a great story, but she was still desperately seeking an out. Why now? Why after seven minutes of me forcing myself to seem interested in your cats are you unable to wait the twelve seconds it will take to finish my story before you walk away? Whatever. The fact that we both spent time in our lives in Minnesota was not enough to sustain a conversation, and I was well aware of that fact, but she was the only one in this bar talking to me so I was milking it for all I could get out of it. I guess the cow’s udder had gone dry.
As she attempted to brush her hand against mine, I retreated upwards to grab a glass. “Water?” I offered a possible inclination. Though my thirst was quite quenched, I now had to drink water to follow through with my desire to stay far away from a girl I had once had mutual sexual feelings for. This trip to her house was a week after all sexual activity had stopped and was my attempt at being honest as opposed to leading her on when I knew that my feelings had faded.
Instead of going out with one of the many women that I called that night, I spent the night on my computer writing a script for my comedy troupe. Sitting down, I had only the idea of writing about a date that went awkwardly. An awkward date was what I wanted, so I thought that if I created it in fiction, that it would be like I almost experienced it in non-fiction.
She took two steps to my left in a desire to exit our bar-convo and my voice began to falter. I found a quicker way to finish my sentence and pretended I had to leave also. This was my way of making her feel okay with the fact that she was forcing me to stand alone in a crowded room. I couldn’t even blend in because I was at the birthday party of an old childhood friend of a friend who I only knew through my parents’ friends. I like him fine, in fact we get along famously, but our social circles and life experiences have little in common. If you were to make a ven-diagram of types of people we have as friends they would look like John Lennon glasses. Yet, I was here, the only one without a dry-cleaned $40 collard shirt, instead opting for my hunter’s jacket, fishing hat, and Kanye glasses. I was the only one in the room with facial hair, and even that looked like I went through a car wash that threw mud on either side of my face.
My soon to be rejected ex-lover sat on one couch, and I sat on the furthest one available. “I don’t know how to start this.” I started my planned explanation of why my desire to touch genitals had faded. After my attempt to rationalize our previous relationship and analyze the parts that had led to its demise, I caught a glance at her face. She was stoic. There weren’t tears, nor was there a smile. There wasn’t a smirk, and there wasn’t even relief.
I knew we were this supposed rom-com match because I was being approached weekly with the idea that I was crushing on my friend. Beyond that, I was being approached weekly with the idea that I was soon to be rejected by my friend I was supposedly crushing on. How was I already being rejected without even having a desire to be rejected?
She knew that if she showed even an ounce of emotion, it would be proof that I was important to her, and this rejection was me proving the power I had over her. Instead she stayed stoic. I didn’t want power over her, I just didn’t want to be over her physically any more either (or, more likely her over me). Our time had passed. I extended an olive branch: “I hope we can hang out, but if you don’t want to, you can just reject my phone calls or whatever.”
She stood on one side of the street, and I sat down on the other curb. Her face lit up by Jamba Juice’s yellow glow, I saw an expression of confusion, disgust, and sadness. I sat stubbornly underneath a broken light post demanding that she come join me on my side of the street. It wasn’t the side that mattered. It didn’t matter to either of us. I just wanted her to bend to my whims for once. At least that would prove to all the people who had suggested that I had an undying and unrespected love for her that I was an equal partner. I could force her to cross the street and follow me.
Though I thought I had escaped the situation and I would just have to avoid the former Minnesota resident the rest of the night, she stopped me with the explanation that “this was awkward.” Usually an admission of awkwardness is a turn on for me, but when the awkwardness is something that you forced because you find my inability to match my wrinkled clothes to my other wrinkled clothes disgusting, then I no longer am complimented. I responded by explaining that “I understand.” Meant to pacify her fears that she had insulted me, and that I understood that she had other friends, and I was going to hang out with my other friends too. Instead she took it as though I was explaining that I understood why she was rejecting me; that her 5’3” 115 lb frame was just too good for me.
My olive branch worked. She took my offer and rejected my phone calls from then on. I ran into her through a mutual friend two weeks later and offered up sad stories from my life to prove that I had not done better without her. She provided evidence of sexual success and happiness since my departure with nearly the same stoic stare that had started my descent down the hole of powerlessness. This time there was something different about the stoic stare: it had the slightest hint of a smirk.
Though the script I was writing started out as a story of awkwardness, it quickly became about how awkwardness and power were negatively correlated. When one became more uncomfortable, one also lost any power they may have possessed in the relationship. The sketch then added in the extra thesis that confusion caused awkwardness. When one didn’t understand how to react, one was forced to become a stumbling uncomfortable mess. This led the sketch to the conclusion of both parties on the date being confused and therefore awkward – and it wasn’t happy.
“No, I’m sorry. Don’t feel bad.” She responded to my understanding. I didn’t until now, when you made your rejection of me public in the middle of a crowded room. I could not respond without appearing desperate, defensive, or douchey. I just walked away, depressed.
I continued onward to Kowalski’s alone, as did she. We didn’t see each other in the grocery store and walked back alone as well. I came home to find my facebook wall with a new post. “Don’t give up on your friends.” She was right, but it’s hard to have faith in a group that so constantly disappoints.
One of my favorite lines in all of cinema is “A relationship is like a shark, it must constantly move forward otherwise it dies.” I think it hits deep to the heart of my hatred of the steady and stable. I have used it in order to end things with a girl, I have used it to ask to move to the next level with a girl, and I have used it to gauge where I was at with a girl. I no longer think that it is accurate. It isn’t that a relationship must constantly move forward, it is that the power dynamic must constantly be shifting. Power exists in any relationship between two people, and there is no such thing as constant equality because no two people have the exact same opinions on everything so therefore there will be disagreements in which the couple will have to choose one’s opinion over the other’s. I always thought that if I just refused to desire power that the other would be happy and therefore so would the relationship, but the truth is that that power dynamic must shift back and forth for everybody to be happy. My lack of power has been too constant to correlate to any happiness.

I have never strived for power. Attention I’ve desired, but power over others seems like a waste. If you are forcing one to do something against their will, then will they truly enjoy it, and will you truly enjoy having made them do it? I wouldn’t.

I stood on one side of the street demanding that my friend come back to my side of the street. We were walking to Kowalski’s at two in the morning and I wanted to walk on the side of the street that I wanted to walk on. This friend of mine was a girl I had no desire to be romantic/intimate/sexual with but knew I was supposed to have all of those desires for. She was a friend that I spent nights with discussing her inability to find the right man, while I joked about my inability to find a woman at all. She was cute, but willing to talk about “boy” stuff with me. I was not quite as attractive, but cutely self-deprecating and would be willing to cry in front of a girl. We were a match made in teen-movie heaven.

During my junior year two of my best friends studied abroad. Without the two people I had spent most hours of the day with in the previous year, I found myself alone waiting for a call from somebody to tell me something interesting to do. One Friday night I sat on my couch with my two roommates watching Scrubs not because we enjoyed the show, but because it was 6 o’clock. I suggested that we call somebody, and while everyone agreed, we couldn’t think of the right person to call. I opened my phone and began calling every female in my addressbook. My intent was to call every male the next day. I blame my lack of following through on the next day’s plans on the first day’s utter failure and not on a misogyny.

As I was finishing my story, she started to walk away. My story was not that bad. It wasn’t a great story, but she was still desperately seeking an out. Why now? Why after seven minutes of me forcing myself to seem interested in your cats are you unable to wait the twelve seconds it will take to finish my story before you walk away? Whatever. The fact that we both spent time in our lives in Minnesota was not enough to sustain a conversation, and I was well aware of that fact, but she was the only one in this bar talking to me so I was milking it for all I could get out of it. I guess the cow’s udder had gone dry.

As she attempted to brush her hand against mine, I retreated upwards to grab a glass. “Water?” I offered a possible inclination. Though my thirst was quite quenched, I now had to drink water to follow through with my desire to stay far away from a girl I had once had mutual sexual feelings for. This trip to her house was a week after all sexual activity had stopped and was my attempt at being honest as opposed to leading her on when I knew that my feelings had faded.

Instead of going out with one of the many women that I called that night, I spent the night on my computer writing a script for my comedy troupe. Sitting down, I had only the idea of writing about a date that went awkwardly. An awkward date was what I wanted, so I thought that if I created it in fiction, that it would be like I almost experienced it in non-fiction.

She took two steps to my left in a desire to exit our bar-convo and my voice began to falter. I found a quicker way to finish my sentence and pretended I had to leave also. This was my way of making her feel okay with the fact that she was forcing me to stand alone in a crowded room. I couldn’t even blend in because I was at the birthday party of an old childhood friend of a friend who I only knew through my parents’ friends. I like him fine, in fact we get along famously, but our social circles and life experiences have little in common. If you were to make a ven-diagram of types of people we have as friends they would look like John Lennon glasses. Yet, I was here, the only one without a dry-cleaned $40 collard shirt, instead opting for my hunter’s jacket, fishing hat, and Kanye glasses. I was the only one in the room with facial hair, and even that looked like I went through a car wash that threw mud on either side of my face.

My soon to be rejected ex-lover sat on one couch, and I sat on the furthest one available. “I don’t know how to start this.” I started my planned explanation of why my desire to touch genitals had faded. After my attempt to rationalize our previous relationship and analyze the parts that had led to its demise, I caught a glance at her face. She was stoic. There weren’t tears, nor was there a smile. There wasn’t a smirk, and there wasn’t even relief.

I knew we were this supposed rom-com match because I was being approached weekly with the idea that I was crushing on my friend. Beyond that, I was being approached weekly with the idea that I was soon to be rejected by my friend I was supposedly crushing on. How was I already being rejected without even having a desire to be rejected?

She knew that if she showed even an ounce of emotion, it would be proof that I was important to her, and this rejection was me proving the power I had over her. Instead she stayed stoic. I didn’t want power over her, I just didn’t want to be over her physically any more either (or, more likely her over me). Our time had passed. I extended an olive branch: “I hope we can hang out, but if you don’t want to, you can just reject my phone calls or whatever.”

She stood on one side of the street, and I sat down on the other curb. Her face lit up by Jamba Juice’s yellow glow, I saw an expression of confusion, disgust, and sadness. I sat stubbornly underneath a broken light post demanding that she come join me on my side of the street. It wasn’t the side that mattered. It didn’t matter to either of us. I just wanted her to bend to my whims for once. At least that would prove to all the people who had suggested that I had an undying and unrespected love for her that I was an equal partner. I could force her to cross the street and follow me.

Though I thought I had escaped the situation and I would just have to avoid the former Minnesota resident the rest of the night, she stopped me with the explanation that “this was awkward.” Usually an admission of awkwardness is a turn on for me, but when the awkwardness is something that you forced because you find my inability to match my wrinkled clothes to my other wrinkled clothes disgusting, then I no longer am complimented. I responded by explaining that “I understand.” Meant to pacify her fears that she had insulted me, and that I understood that she had other friends, and I was going to hang out with my other friends too. Instead she took it as though I was explaining that I understood why she was rejecting me; that her 5’3” 115 lb frame was just too good for me.

My olive branch worked. She took my offer and rejected my phone calls from then on. I ran into her through a mutual friend two weeks later and offered up sad stories from my life to prove that I had not done better without her. She provided evidence of sexual success and happiness since my departure with nearly the same stoic stare that had started my descent down the hole of powerlessness. This time there was something different about the stoic stare: it had the slightest hint of a smirk.

Though the script I was writing started out as a story of awkwardness, it quickly became about how awkwardness and power were negatively correlated. When one became more uncomfortable, one also lost any power they may have possessed in the relationship. The sketch then added in the extra thesis that confusion caused awkwardness. When one didn’t understand how to react, one was forced to become a stumbling uncomfortable mess. This led the sketch to the conclusion of both parties on the date being confused and therefore awkward – and it wasn’t happy.

“No, I’m sorry. Don’t feel bad.” She responded to my claim of understanding. I didn’t until now, when you made your rejection of me public in the middle of a crowded room. I could not respond without appearing desperate, defensive, or douchey. I just walked away, depressed.

I continued onward to Kowalski’s alone, as did she. We didn’t see each other in the grocery store and walked back alone as well. I came home to find my facebook wall with a new post. “Don’t give up on your friends.” She was right, but it’s hard to have faith in a group that so constantly disappoints.

One of my favorite lines in all of cinema is “A relationship is like a shark, it must constantly move forward otherwise it dies.” I think it hits deep to the heart of my hatred of the steady and stable. I have used it in order to end things with a girl, I have used it to ask to move to the next level with a girl, and I have used it to gauge where I was at with a girl. I no longer think that it is accurate. It isn’t that a relationship must constantly move forward, it is that the power dynamic must constantly be shifting. Power exists in any relationship between two people, and there is no such thing as constant equality because no two people have the exact same opinions on everything so therefore there will be disagreements in which the couple will have to choose one’s opinion over the other’s. I always thought that if I just refused to desire power that the other would be happy and therefore so would the relationship, but the truth is that that power dynamic must shift back and forth for everybody to be happy. My lack of power has been too constant to correlate to any happiness.

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Attention Whoring

Self Obsession (Pt. 12)

A Sketch Written so That Bad Comedy Could Buy a Chicken Suit

Grade: B

This sketch would be more aptly titled “A Sketch Written so that Joe Could Somehow Perform his Chicken Jokes on Stage Without Having to do a Chicken Themed Stand up Routine.” Each piece is the lengthening of a single joke. (a) The question which came first? could also imply the sexual act of cumming. (b) Wouldn’t it be funny if the Avian Bird flu was a STD for birds? (c) Doesn’t Tom Wolfe look like Colonel Sanders. (d) What do chickens call each other when they are telling each other that they are scared?

These are all decent jokes pushed to their length limit in sketch form, which only serves to make them funnier. The biggest issue with the sketch is the stupid “Two man enter, one man leave” reference thrown in purely as a reference that in no way makes the sketch funnier. The Chicken and Egg game of Ookie Cookie is the best interpretation of that joke I have ever heard, and the bait and switch of the assumption that the chickens hate Colonel Sanders (a reasonable conclusion to to come to) only to find that they hate Tom Wolfe is clever. The transition pacing was a little lacking, and the murdering chicken joke is funny only in that is a complete copy of a sketch done the year before except with chicken suits, which was lost on a fair amount of the audience because no one pays as much attention to us as we do. The last bit was funny, though I wish that the chicken had asked someone in the audience instead of the girl standing in the corner the whole time, so that we had less of a clue as to what he was being “chicken” about.

Overall, I’d say this sketch is a good egg!

Best Actor: The Chicken Suit. Best Line: “Motherfuck the Bonfire of the Goddamn Vanities!”

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Attention Whoring

Self Obsession (Pt. 11)

Life is a Cabaret

Grade: D+

This sketch starts out with the set up of what could be an interesting commentary on ageism in the US and how we stop paying attention to you once you stop contributing back to society, but then it devolves quickly. Once the writers realized that the jokes they were making about apathy toward the feelings of the elderly were somewhat commonplace and had run out, they decided to rely on a rhyming, singing, and tried and true (aka overplayed) jokes at the expense of old people. Lines like: “Quit shaking your damn ta-tas, you’re gonna bruise your damn knees” and “you ain’t had a boner in 25, 25, 25 years” are in no way original or funny, but receive raucous applause and laughter because the actors are using funny voices and sing half heartedly. From then on the sketch relies on the audience assuming that it is hard to rhyme words. It is not. When you are writing things down, it is not difficult to come up with a word that rhymes with “hair.” Luckily the audience is stupid and is distracted by people shaking and jokes about how old people are prejudiced.

That being said, the sketch takes an absurd turn after the line: “Where are we? Hooverville?!”  If the sketch started at 3:50, then this sketch would get a B+ at least for having a very funny train of words that are all associated with people of that generation that don’t make sense together. That and the fact that Hannah and Lara have good on stage chemistry makes this sketch bearable, though only barely.

This problems with this sketch are summed up nicely with the audience’s reaction to the dancing grannies during the slam poetry of depression era words. At one point, Hannah and Lara turn around and the audience hoots and hollers to support their attractiveness even though the point of that is illustrate that even though they were once “valuable” members of society, they’ve lost what made them “valuable”: Their looks. And because they’ve lost their looks, they’ve lost their worth. But the sketch fails to explain that because its message changes as if it were a rant from a Philosophy major at a community college who was high, and therefore the audience still interprets their shimmying as attempts to be attractive. The audience has not gotten invested at all into the story, instead opting to invest themselves in wiggling bodies and shaky voices.

Best Actor: The costumes were sort of funny. Best Line: “Where are we Hoover-ville?”

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