Monday, March 28, 2005

The Best Girl Ever...

I love my wife. She is without a doubt the coolest, funniest, smartest, and sexiest chick I have ever met. As a married guy in a sea of unmarried people it is hard for me to relate this without sounding “whipped” or like a wimp or whatever. I just really appreciate this girl far more than I can say. She is not just my wife but truly my best friend. On that note I want to relate some excerpts from our recent lives.

*Friday, March 25; 11:30 pm: LJ asks me if I want to go out with her and her friends to a crowded night club in town. I ask if she will be upset if I decline due to my exhaustion from working solidly for the last two days. She says no problem, gives me a hug and kiss, then leaves to meet up with her friends. I stay awake for another hour then fall asleep.

*Saturday, March 26; 7:30 am: I wake up in my bed and turn over to discover that my wife is not there. “Shit, where the hell is she?” I think as I roll out of bed and throw on some clothes. I walk downstairs and into our family room where I find some dude on our loveseat, sleeping. I shrug and find my cell phone. After calling her and receiving no reply I call our roommate Mike. “OK, where is my wife and what the hell happened last night?” I ask. “Oh, hey. LJ and Sara just dropped me off at my truck (which was still downtown). She should be home in a few minutes". "Alright, I'll hear the whole story from LJ when she gets home", I say before hanging up.

Panic is subsiding, so I sit out front to smoke a cigarette and wait for them to drive up. I want to hear all about why she wasn’t in bed this morning, who the guy on the couch is, and why Mike’s truck was downtown.

She drives up with Sara, about five minutes later, and gets out of the car sheepishly. She gives me a hug and tells me the whole story.


The night before they all go to Seville. After it closes they decide to go somewhere that is still open so that they can continue to have fun. Sara suggests Babes, a strip club she has visited before. They all agree and head on. (For all of you who weren’t paying attention: MY WIFE WENT TO A STIP CLUB WITH HER FRIENDS!) After Babes closes they come back to our place and hangout until sunrise. The guy on the couch is Sara’s-cousin’s-friend. Mike left his truck so they could all travel together.

Would most guys be mad about this? Resoundingly yes, I was told by my co-workers. They couldn’t believe that I wasn’t pissed. The thing is though that I trust my wife more than anyone else in the world. She merely went out to have a good time and in the course of the evening ended up at a strip club. She would never cheat on me or do something intentionally that would get her into trouble with me. End Result: I’m not pissed, she has a stronger friend group, and mike got a lap dance as I understand. Good for him…

**Easter 2005: I wake up and head downstairs to find a napkin on the table with a brief message on it. LJ had gone to work at 7 am, but left Mike and I a slew of cleverly hidden eggs all around the downstairs. Not just any eggs though, these were Cadbury Cream Eggs! We spend about thirty or forty minutes looking for these. It was fun on the bun, let me tell ya.

She comes home later and gives me an Easter bucket (that’s right bucket, because she felt that the baskets at Wal-Mart were uber lame, she's so cool). There is a box under mine that I unwrap to discover a GameBoy Advance! “No WAY!” I scream. She even got me a game to go with it. In both Mike’s and my Buckets we had Peeps (Mike’s favorite), Cadbury chocolate mini-eggs (my favorite), and mini bottles of Goldshlogger, whiskey, and vodka (everyone’s favorite!). Later that evening she even let me switch the channel from the movie Magnolia to a show I like to watch on Cartoon Network's [Adult Swim].

How could I ever find anyone better than this woman? I can’t. She is so freak’n awesome! I love this chick.

To all you guys out there, I have one thing to say…I WIN! My chick is the best.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Men on Men

I had a conversation recently that brought my attention to, what I consider to be, a major flaw in most men’s character.

First though, let me start by giving you some background on myself. I am a 26 year old male. I am hetero-sexual and am married. I enjoy activities such as rock climbing, hiking, caving, mountain biking, paintball, SCUBA, and many other physically oriented sports. The kind of sports that most guys would be like, “Yeah, he’s a manly dude.” However, I also enjoy making things with my hands. As an example: glass etching, T-shirt stencils, knitting, and other crafting related things; typically non-male hobbies.

So the flaw that I had alluded to was this; most straight men are terrified that other men will think them gay. For many years I have had to suffer the uncomfortable, surprised or even disgusted looks from guys who are so caught up in portraying the “I’m straight, I’m not effeminate in any way, If you think I’m gay you’re wrong sort of attitude”, that when I told them that I had tried knitting they looked at me like I was going to ask them to go to a gay bar with me. It’s amazing that the only men who are seemingly comfortable with their identity are gay men. That’s right, I said it. Gay men aren’t worried about impressing all the other fragile ego’ed, homophobic, straight males out there. Outcome: they are usually more themselves than a straight guy is.

So many males feel it necessary to strut around acting, what they believe to be, not effeminate. It’s kind of sad really. It’s as though men are suffering from some sort of identity crisis that is self imposed merely from this idyllic non-entity that every man assumes they should strive to be. If these guys could stop strutting for the other men out there they could learn some pretty cool things.

Here are some questions and answers for you.

Q: Do I feel that making T-shirt stencils or glass etching or crafting in general is gay?

A: No! Only someone who was REALLY insecure about how others viewed him would say so.

Q: Is it alright for men to knit?

A: Why the hell not? Is it wrong to learn a new skill and use it? Would any male object to learning how to drive a motorcycle or throw a punch? Knitting takes a lot of imagination, time, and coordination fellas. It isn’t something to sneer at even if a guy is doing it.

Here is a question from me to you.

Q: Why is a guy who dresses “metro-sexually” for a night out at the club not considered gay?

A: Because he is doing it in the pursuit of tail.

What most guys don’t understand is that women are impressed, as far as I know, with a guy who is masculine enough to not feel that he has to be what his frat brothers expect him to be. That’s right guys, women respond to strength of character. Men who are sure of themselves and confident will always be more attractive. (Girls, if I’m wrong here let me know)

Now I’m not saying that every guy is going to love knitting. Hell, I suck at it and haven’t tried it but a few times (though I do hope to make a sweater for myself some day soon). What I am saying is that more guys need to be less concerned about what the male image should be and just be themselves. If you think some flowers would look good in your bathroom, then go get them and make an arrangement. I have. Don’t worry about what some other dude may think. If you feel you might like to make something that involves sewing then learn to use a sewing machine and do it. Don’t just ask your girlfriends or wives because you think that isn’t a “male” thing to do. If you want to wear hot pants and strut it for all the guys at the construction site then…well…maybe you are gay.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Sit-Com’s Suck

Speaking of comedy. I just want to rant for a second about the current state of network television. If you all don’t already know, I recently got back into TV in no small part due to Mike. For some time however, I have been bored by the average sit-com on network television. Has anyone else noticed that the jokes are recycled or at the very least formulaic? It’s the same damn comedy! Frasier, Friends, Cheers, That 70’s Show, etc, etc, they all are alike. How you ask? In a few major ways. The comedy revolves around two things, pithy retorts and embarrassing situations. You can count on one character in any of these shows to say something to set up another character’s witty comment. The only thing that ever changes is the scenario in which the characters are in, and that’s just a veneer.

Tell me you people can’t predict what one character will say to the other at any given moment. The sit-com hasn’t changed since the earliest days. You could look at an old episode of The Beverly Hill-Billy’s and compare it with Will & Grace. I grew tired of the formula humor. I was tired of getting the same set up and knockdown from every damn show on TV. When I was at my lowest I found something new.

I encourage all of you to view some new comedy. I found it in the ridiculously low budgeted cartoon shows on Cartoon Network’s “Adult Swim”. These are irreverent shows that are redefining modern comedy. It started with the launch of a strange but funny show called Space Ghost Coast to Coast about seven years ago, then bloomed into an entire evening line up. Adult Swim has done so well in fact that it has put out DVD collections of its shows, and is nearly ready to launch a toy line.

I warn you though; some of you just aren’t going to get the humor. Some of the shows are very strange and it is hard to understand them. This, however, is a good thing. We need to get away from our comfort zone occasionally. Yeah, it’s easy to like the same thing you’ve seen a billion times before, but how can anyone be satisfied that way. I want to be challenged. Things are funnier to me when I don’t know what will happen next. I urge you all to watch any of the following shows: Home Movies, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Robot Chicken, Harvey Birdman Attorney at Law, Venture Brothers,and Sea Lab 2021 to name some of my favorites. These are terrific programs that break from the norm so completely that you never know where the show may end up. Not to mention that they are written more for adults than the drivel you get from network shows.

Give them a try at least once. If you don’t like any of them then go back to your recycled sit-coms. At least though you can say you tried something new.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Comedy is a Dying Art Form

*Disclaimer: I’m not sick or weird. I feel that I must state clearly, before the rest of this article is typed, that I am neither insane nor does insanity run in my family…unless you count my brother…which I don’t. That said I now want to share with you a darker side of my personality.

I heard on the radio recently that a family of eleven was tragically killed. I found the story more than a little humorous but let me defend myself before you jump to any conclusions about me, or worse stop commenting on my site. The cause, as I see it, utter stupidity.

This family of eleven had just moved into a new townhouse the day before their tragic demise. It seems they were using candles for light that evening. At some point a king size mattress was lit on fire. In their panic or daftness, the family attempted to shove the flaming mattress out the only exit to their home. The burning mattress became lodged in the door and started the rest of the house on fire. Subsequently, all of the family died.

When I heard this, I was sad at first. However I soon realized that these people’s deaths were inevitable. If the flaming mattress hadn’t killed them something else would have; such as starring up at the rain with their mouth’s open for example (if you don't know, this is an old turkey myth). I know that I should be more sympathetic. Yes, it is tragic. But it is also what I like to call “tragically humorous”.

How many of you have laughed at other people’s suffering? I’ll bet many of you have. Be it from watching the show Jackass, or The Three Stooges. Maybe you have read or heard of some “Darwin Award” winners and chuckled under your breath. (The story I just related reminds me of one by the way). All I’m saying is that maybe it’s a little wrong for me to laugh at something like this, but I’ll be damned if it isn’t somewhat funny.

There have been many times in my life when I have thought to myself, “Hmmm, I could die doing this and if I did would it be a dignified death?” Certainly, I would have thought twice before wedging a flaming mattress in the only exit of a room I was in.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Higher Power

I am not a religious person. I haven’t been for a long, long while.

The other day I was talking to Mike about his plight I suppose. He just had his truck fixed for substantially less money than he thought it would cost originally. In the short while that it took to get the truck serviced he didn’t miss a day of work and was still able to hang with his friends. On top of that he was able to make up some work on Saturday that he was unable to do on Thursday due to weather conditions. When I talked to him about this I asked if he had thought about thanking God (thinking of his blog article “There once was a boy named Job”). He said that his computer was still broken.

I thought about myself later that day. If I were religious would there be anything I would pray for? In a way, I supposed, I had prayed for Mike. I was concerned about him getting back on his feet. I genuinely, deeply wanted to be able to make his problems go away. I guess that is similar to praying. I shared my thoughts with LJ and went to bed thinking about it.

Then I thought again about my plight. Would there be anything I would ask God for? I considered this for a pretty long time. The answer I came to was no. There really isn’t anything going on right now with me that I feel is out of my power to change. Certainly in the past there have been situations that were beyond my influence and that I could have prayed over, but right now there isn’t a thing.

I suppose I have come to greater appreciation for prayer. I now believe I understand what it feels like to ask for support from a higher power. To me I kinda felt like my prayers for Mike were answered. Does this mean that I am converted and believe in an almighty God? Eh, not really. I am still agnostic. However, I feel more empathy for those who do believe in a higher being and I suppose I understand how prayer can help people.

So, apparently my prayers get answered. If anyone out there needs anything just send me your prayer on a 5x8 note card with $5.00 attached. Your prayer will be submitted in the order it was received.

*Mark will not be held liable for any prayers that go unanswered. Prayer is a registered trademark of Sacreligion LTD.