Some seek novelty; others crave routine. Some go to their favorite restaurant to order their beloved dish; others perk up about the specials with anticipation of a surprise. It could be physiology; it could be habit. Are you the kind of person to eat your cherished chicken parm for the 100th time, or to scan the menu and order something different—searching for a new discovery?Continue reading
Would you eat a bowl of your favorite soup that was stirred with a used flyswatter that had been thoroughly soaked and washed?
Would you drink a cup of water five minutes after you had spit your own saliva into it?
Take the disgust quiz HERE:
Disgust is one of the general human emotions identified by Paul Ekman, a psychologist who studies universal facial displays. He found happiness, sadness, surprise, disgust, anger, fear, and contempt are identifiable in many different world cultures. Pixar’s Inside Out only used five of them, but I think they missed an opportunity to let Kathy Griffin be the shocked voice of OMG surprise and Bill Burr contemptuously critiquing everything little Riley encounters, especially broccoli pizza.Continue reading
“What happens to a [Trumper’s] dream deferred?
Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?… Or does it explode?
–modified Langston Hughes
The 4 more years dream of the Trump coalition of red-hatted truckers, greasy bikers, tough guys, rough gals, stock traders, rich pricks and uninformed uncles all over America was squashed with Biden’s November victory. Yet, leave it to those puckered-up Trumpet minions to snag shame from the jaws of defeat by literally invading our Capitol. Faced with the prospect of the dread label of LOSER, Trump pushed all his slimeball chips to the center and effectively tweeted: “All in. Election was rigged. Support me or else YOU lose.” Trump claimed the election he WON was rigged, so of course the one he lost was, too. So afraid of losing, so afraid at the mocking chants of “Loooser, Loooser” he’d hear in his tortured nightmares coming from his dead father, Trump decided to burn it down.
To make a long story short, American culture is a mix of both European and African influences. The whites of Europe and blacks of Africa, coming to America in radically different scenarios, made their marks upon society. It’s hard to deny that the black influence makes America dynamic and distinctive. The disruptive, disgraceful history of slavery denied so many people a fair and free existence. Nevertheless, their home was that same place that refused to honor them. I was so shaken during the George Floyd protests when I heard former Celtics coach and now 76ers coach, Doc Rivers say, “It’s amazing why we keep loving this country, and this country does not love us back.”Continue reading
An old Frenchman named Montaigne once said, “Even upon the highest throne, man still sits upon his arse.” What goes unsaid is that which comes out of the aforementioned arse—caca poo poo. It’s the common problem of humans, i.e. being self-aware of our own bungholes. Some don’t have this problem. Defectors from Pyongyang brought with them the scoop that North Korean leader Jong-un Kim’s pappy Jong-il Kim never pooped. We like to think farts and toilet jokes are funny, but they’re not, our bowels are deadly serious and the source of much of our anxiety and dread. One character in The Sopranos died on the toilet from constipation and it is rumored that’s how Elvis shuffled off.Continue reading
Due to my crappy memory for anything besides Simpsons quotes and sports statistics, lots of my childhood memories come from parental second-hand stories. My dad tells embarrassing scatological stories of my first few years with an uncontrolled bladder and my mom mostly fills in details from questions about my elementary wanderings. One story that can be corroborated was around my 5th or 6th b-day. During the common “Happy Birthday” song, I burst into tears. On a grainy home video, I’m sitting at the head of the table in a darkened room with a little conical hat, fires burning atop my sweet cake, family illuminated in shadows performing that droning incantation and you can see it coming. My face drops and I lose it. Even as a tiny kid I didn’t like that song.Continue reading
One of my favorite activities during the Christmas season is re-watching Home Alone. I know every line, every scene and love it all. The family running around packing for France, the pizza, the bumbling robbers, the old man shoveling rock salt, the tarantula, the house lights, the paint cans, the background score, John Candy and the Kenosha Kickers being quite popular in Sheboygan; it’s 103 minutes of Christmas spirit for me. However, one character stands out among all the familial dysfunction: Uncle Frank.
A few days ago, I finished reading Pet Sematary and then watched the 1989 movie. The movie pulls out the big moments and crams it all into 100 minutes. They’re both scary in different ways. I got the terror tingles and horror chills from both. It’s not a purely scary idea such as a killer clown or a haunted mansion; it’s more a question of what would you do for your kid? Continue reading
A few weeks ago, when the Coronavirus was still holed up in Central China and not the global pandemic and international catastrophe it has become, my apartment flooded. Late in the quiet hours of a worknight sleep, my wife woke me up with frantic screaming. She had gotten up to pee and stepped in it. The wet floor could be a dog-related effluvium or a spilled water cup from the nightstand, but this was too deep and too cold for that. Gurgling up from between the doorframe was clean, clear, cold water. I stayed awake all night in a cycle, alternating every towel in the house between soaking up the unknown stream and the washing machine spin-cycle. Continue reading
I didn’t regularly drink coffee until reaching my thirties. I didn’t need it. People used to make any variety of this faux-joke, “Don’t talk to me until I’ve had my first cup”, and I thought that was just a nice way of telling me to shut up or go away. It seemed like a bad idea to start habitually using a “drug” that could so enormously impact your day. Continue reading