things my friends say, vol. 8

Today's nugget, compliments of:

"I met my soul mate....he is a certified Grade-A dreamboat and I want to civil union the shit out of him right now."

Yup. Civil union as a verb. I'm fine with it.



truth in advertising

I like to take laps at the airport. Sitting while people-watching is fun, but I enjoy taking my show on the road. And since my travel equation always holds true, where (X) the amount of time I give myself inversely affects (Y) any sort of line or delay, my ample two hour allowance for holiday traffic equaled me getting through security in approximately thirty seconds and therefore being quite familiar with Concourse C at PDX.

I was in the best sort of mood for people-watching, but both my shiny new notebook and my shiny new camera were buried deep under clothes and presents, an oversight made while jamming four days of travel and gifts into one backpack without regard for priority. As I didn't feel like unpacking the entirety of my Christmas and my unmentionables for all to see, I was left to observe and report without the aid of pen or photo.

What really struck me, more than the disturbing abundance of Santa hats and the general hodgepodge of humanity waiting for flights, were the giant yellow posters positioned front and center at every Southwest gate. Without graphics or context, each simply proclaimed:

"It's hard to move on if you're standing still."

That's all. No explanation, no gimmick, nothing. I get that they're an airline, travel, moving, suggested action etc., but the syntax as a whole has had me thinking far more than I'm sure was intended. Did they actually intend to play off of typical year-end reflections involving forward motion, or the lack thereof? And if so, what was the rationale behind that decision? Or am I just forcing my own interpretation and insecurities on a vaguely-written ad campaign? Am I the only one to do so?

I don't know. But I do know I stood for a socially uncomfortably period of time, contemplating the concept of movement versus progress as the annual hourglass drains while the queue of folks awaiting their flight back to Houston squinted at their tickets, determined to ignore the staring kid with the yellow backpack while waiting for their rows to be called.



SNA to PDX is A-OK

I booked my last job before Baby Jesus' Birthday and I'm itchin' to get the fuck outta Dodge.

photo credit where credit is due

I'll be in the land o' beaver for a few days, and I try to stay off the interwebs as much as possible whilst in the homeland. So in case I don't make it on here, enjoy yourselves however you deem appropriate. Or inappropriate. If you're already on the naughty list, might as well finish strong.

be well -



eff me

For the record, I realized after posting moments ago that the previous two posts were also just glorified lists.

The hypocrisy is not lost.

Dammit. Love me anyway? Kthanxbye.

and a partridge in a pear tree

If frequency of blog posts determined placement on Santa's list, in four days I'd be opening colorful boxes of reindeer shit. Writing fail on my part this month. Yet another "area for growth" on the ever-growing resolution list.

And this posty-post right here...it's not going to be amazing. Let's just get that out in the open. No one will etch these words in stone because I am channeling my inner six year old and cannot focus on anything other than SANTASANTASANTA.

By and large my self-imposed blogging rules are to avoid (1) emo boo-hoo shit, (2) dear diary references of no relevance to anyone else, and (3) lists. Lists are the least offensive but are an easy out all the same, the written equivalent of offering up a handjob so you can claim effort when really you just want to sleep.

So if you couldn't tell before this, I'm absolutely breaking my third rule today. If this upsets you, well, Rudolph says go fuck yourself. Such a potty-mouthed reindeer he is.

Any-hoo.....things that are currently the schnapps in my cocoa:
  • Wheels up in roughly forty hours, SNA to PDX...I have a middle seat but I'll deal as long as Mr. or Ms. Window Seat isn't a pee-monster. It's a two hour, twenty minute flight. You go more than once, and I activate Beast Mode.
  • My shopping is 99.9% done and I didn't sell any organs to finance this miracle.
  • I get to see my cousin and her cute little bi-racial baby, renewing the sadness over both my parents being white as pure snow.
  • Babs promised me lunch at Juan Colorado's, and nothing makes me happier than a mouthful of Mexican. Pun intended? Bet your sweet ass it was.
  • Presents. Spare me the holier-than-thou shit. I need new socks and that business ain't free.
  • Food. Paid for and prepared by others. Massive win.
  • Reuniting with a bestie for some good old fashioned shenanigans. If being hungover on Christmas Eve is wrong, I don't want to be right.
  • Board games with my dad's side of the tree. Not only is it tradition, but mixing alcohol with mental illness and sarcasm is a special joy not known by the masses.
  • Green. Everywhere. Actual trees, not a weed reference, and yes I do have to clarify because it's Oregon and both are plentiful.
That's all. Sorry to subject you to a list-job, I'd offer more but my mind is 1,000 miles to the north...and I have a headache.

Safe travels amigos -



wonders never cease

Here are some things I don't understand. If you have any insight, by all means share with the class:

Ashley Madison
Have you heard of this? The online "agency" that helps initiate extramarital affairs? Their site motto is "Life is short. Have an affair." This intrigues me. Obviously I don't have the moral marriage-is-sacred hang-up; I'm all for fucking early and often with whoever pulls your trigger. I believe cheating is like love in that it is defined within one's own mind; there's no hard and fast set of standards. I just get hung up on the sheer blatancy of this site. Can you imagine being the partner that finds that in the ol' browser history? It's like finding a Google search on how to hide a body....if you don't connect the dots, you deserve what's coming. Almost 2010, and we can't even manage infidelity the old-fashioned way anymore.....perplexing.

Folgers Coffee
OK, this one drives me insane. At my Ralph's store, they keep the Folgers Instant Coffee locked up in the front of the store with the Skoal and Virginia Slims and other things the lower echelon of Hollywood craves. WHY? There has to be some illicit use of which I'm unaware, like how they guard the cold meds so we all don't whip up a fresh batch of meth in the tub. I'm convinced there is a dark sinister use for those caffeinated crystals, and I won't rest till I know what it is.

Straight Girls in Clubs
After my outing into stereotypical Hollywood club-land last night, I offer this friendly reminder to the young lass that opted against panties in December: no one buys a cow if it looks like a big slutty whoreface. Or something like that. Bottom line, I accidentally saw her vagina. More aptly put, I was visually accosted by her frightening impostor of a vagina, which I can only hope survived a nuclear explosion as an explanation for its deformity. Maybe it was cursed. I don't know. But goddamn. First off, have a modicum of self-respect before you throw your legs open in the direction of unsuspecting homos. Second, if your poor puss looks like it's been whittled out of oak, best to save that surprise for the bedroom lest you frighten away potential suitors. I'm as down to do naughty things with a stranger as anyone, but desperate doesn't begin to explain this chick. Baffling.

Weather in LA
God forbid it ever snow here. I predict people would eat their groceries, their pets, each other, and then die of starvation before attempting a trip to the store. It rains here and people act like they're personally being punished. Anything remotely close to the realities of the outside sends this town into a tailspin. Portland in 12 days. Can't. Wait. To. Escape.

I guess that's all for now. Answers and explanations welcome.

Happy Friday Friends -



check it twice

THE holiday list. Try it...you just might like it.

READ - "SantaLand Diaries" by David Sedaris
Really you should read the whole collection of holiday-themed short stories, but this is the crown jewel. Few things make me laugh out loud, but no matter how many times I read his account of working at Macy's Santaland I still end up in stitches. Good shit.

LISTEN - "River" by Robert Downey Jr.
Didn't know Iron Man / Sherlock Holmes had a Christmas song, did you? A bit on the mellow / depressing side if you acknowledge lyrics, but a great way to shake up the holiday tunage if you get tired of hearing Josh Groban. Which is not only plausible but absolutely certain to happen.

DRINK - Delirium Noel (beer) or Rumple Minze (shnapps)
Noel is the festive offshoot of the Belgian Delirium Tremens brewery, and Rumple Minze is the kick-ass (real) German version of peppermint schnapps. Use liberally to make yourself or others more tolerable while still feeling festive. Also, even though there are usually ample opportunities to get poo-faced, remember most of them happen in the proximity of your family or co-workers. Leave the beer bong in the closet and be aware that just because it's Baby Jesus' party, it doesn't give you the right to act like an asshole.

WATCH - "Love Actually" or "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation"
In the former, watch the scene where he holds up signs in place of caroling if you're down for a good cry; in the latter, watch the scene with the squirrel in the tree if you're in need of a good laugh. Both are classics.

WEAR - something subtle and erring on the side of dressy
The holidays are garish enough without you adding to the visual massacre. Anything with Santa's face on it is a no-no and if caught will result in the end of our friendship.

VISIT - a neighborhood advertised for its lights
Every city has one. If you live in the bottom half of Amerrikuh, put on a festive hat, pour some of the aforementioned spirits in your cocoa, and walk. It's better up close and makes you feel wintery. If you live in the top snowy cold as a witches tittie part of the country, for the love of god stay in the car, but load up all the seats and make an outing of it. It's festive and simple, and lazy individuals like me can enjoy the displays without actually having to do anything.

GIVE - what you can, if you want
If someone expects a gift, fuck them. You can show appreciation for someone without a box and bows. Don't have a meltdown or take out a loan over gifts. Be thoughtful, be reasonable, and no matter what anyone says, giftcards mean you don't care enough to try. Fact.

BE - laid back
This time of year freaks everyone out. Plane delays, check-out lines, shipping failures, food disasters, relatives and their respective disorders, money, the usual year-round assholes....it's enough to seriously consider grinding up a Xanax in the nog and wake up around President's Day. Don't give in. Be pleasant and cut everyone, including yourself, a little slack.

That's my list. Not my gift list, obviously. That includes a trip to Europe and Ryan Reynolds holding chocolate peanut butter ice cream.

Don't judge, Everyone is allowed a Christmas dream.



take two

I know I blame Hollywood for all things wrong in the world short of the atom bomb, but this weekend made me think about a part of life that is usually drastically different from what the movies would have us expect.

The time to say goodbye.

A buddy of mine recently got demoted, and we were discussing his plan of action over lunch. Somewhat tongue-in-cheek, he said in the last meeting with his bosses before he quits, he wants to remind them what a bad decision they're making, and "walk off into the sunset." Whether he does it or not, the essence of his comment epitomizes what we've all grown to believe:

There's nothing in life like a grand finale.

A nail in the coffin. The final word. That perfectly timed quip right before the music swells and the credits role. We crave it. In the movies their voices never shake, and they never stumble as they walk away. If we're angry, we want to leave on a real TKO of a verbal slap, striding away defiantly as they shamefully realize their mistake. If we're feeling bittersweet, we hope for a lingering last touch during a meaningful silence before slowly walking away without turning back. If we're sad, we want to be the last thing they see as the plane/train/automobile door closes, trying gamely to smile as a single tear escapes.

I'm just saying... Rhett Butler frankly not giving a damn in Gone With the Wind? Powerful exits are legendary.

I was all geared up for a particular bittersweet goodbye this weekend. I had a my choice lines picked out and everything. And while the banter was sufficiently poignant and a lingering touch occurred, what I had hoped to be a grand finale felt more like fireworks in the rain....not quite how it was meant to be.

But in real life, no one yells "CUT!" as you walk away. Goodbyes are rarely plain and never simple, and I'm not even sure with a million takes I could have said everything I wanted to say.

I guess that's the blessing and the curse of not looking back...you'll never know if you were right to move forward.


don't touch the turducken

Well it's Tuesday, it's officially December, and I'm wearing these little beauties:

...so for all intents and purposes, today is officially The Tits.

I like this time of year because I like seeing the truth. Messy, hilarious, awkward truth about families and relationships, the little man behind the great big facade that we're never supposed to acknowledge. It is not usually warm sweaters and easy conversation and foods both tasty and light shared with people you enjoy. It is, however:

- learning a better way to roll a joint on a bathroom floor at 2am Thanksgiving morning, and then laughing hysterically over the fact that things like a turducken actually exist.

-having a round-table discussion with your friend's family about when she'll start having solid bowel movements again.

-joining in on cherry pie with your fingers after it fell on the floor, because there's no sense in throwing it out when the three second rule is in effect.

-hearing the explanation of how Jake Gyllenhaal's face makes Aunt Someone nauseous.

-sitting in another family's living room as they discuss who spilled the beans of a cousin's lesbian engagement to Homophobic Grandma....

-...and then finding out said lesbian wedding is set to take place on Halloween. In full costume.

-calling your own family, 1,000 miles away, to find out your nephew ate shampoo and everyone is getting sauced over a rousing game of dominoes.

-coming home to your own apartment, setting up your plastic Target tree, and drinking Sam Adams seasonal variety pack while your friends haphazardly trim the tree while discussing whose job it is to name porno movies.

-sitting alone in the dark after it's all said and done, no fireplace, no snowflakes, just getting lost in the little lights as you think about all the great things you have in your life.

It is not Martha Stewart Living.
It is not Courier and Ives.
But it is pretty damn magical all the same.

photo credit: Aaron Keigher
see more of his work and follow his 365 days of photos here