Category Archives: Humor

High-Five For Sadness

I want to start a new trend: high-fiving people when I’m sad upset or angry. That way after I die, people who miss me will look really effing rude talking about me.
.

Dead Tree Remix Day

Dead Tree Remix Day

I don’t know if my dead tree project will ever be finished. I continue to add new painted limbs and branches to it. It’s currently standing in my extra room. I rescued the dead base of the tree from the woodpile near where I found the baby shower box a couple of weeks ago. The little branches I’ve added are from some of my favorite spots along the trail and near the hospital, so it’s a well-traveled creation. I love the idea of it in part because it’s something made from discarded and desiccated remains. That I can add an infinite number of pieces to it, all rendered in luminescent color makes me happy.

The day contains the same elements of any other day. It can be a repeat of the familiar. It can also be an anomalous remix, both familiar and strangely new. Like freshly-sliced jalapeños on vanilla bean ice cream.

For fans of both Merle Haggard and Survivor, I ask you to search for “Survivor and Merle Haggard – Eye of the Haggard.” It’s an example of juxtaposing two things that should not work together but somehow do. Musically, it’s a masterful bit of wild production and melody.

In other news, I don’t like to watch baseball. Albert Pujols joined Babe Ruth as a 600 HR hitter and a pitcher. I love it when anything interesting happens in baseball. It joins bowling and golf as two sports that are like watching my hair dry. Yes, all 11 of them.

I’m looking at the new day with the eye of a tiger and the pancreas of a hyena. (That joke might be a little too esoteric.)

Before I leave for work, I will turn off the light in the room with the dead tree project. The colors will fade to the eye until the sun washes through the window and illuminates it.

It will have its day in the sun.

I hope each of you does too.

My cat will jump up to the windowsill multiple times during the day. I added extra-wide sills to all my windows so that both he and the few plants I have can enjoy the second-floor view and light.

It’s what Mondays are made for, though most of us begrudgingly wake up groggy-eyed and unready for the presumptive start of the workweek. If you’re going to spend 20% of your work-life experiencing Mondays, you might as well find a new perspective to enjoy them.

Take the pieces that don’t work and refresh them. Remix and enjoy.

Love, X
.

Redactyl Speaks

My dinosaur Redactyl found a cigarette butt on the ground. I don’t know how he picked it up. Now the problem is that his tiny arms won’t reach his mouth to light it!

He says the forecast today is hot with a very small chance of rain.

He has learned a lot more Latin. He told me that today’s phrase is: “Vincit qui se vincit.” I already knew that one. It means, “… He conquers who conquers himself.”

Love, X

Chalk Rebuttal

The older lady in the pink shirt was walking with her husband. I could see it on her face, the reprimand approaching. She did not appreciate me having fun by the trail.

I said good morning.

She scowled and did that “ack” sound.

“Don’t you have something better to do?” Her voice was crawling with derision.

I replied in gibberish, as if I were speaking a foreign language. Although I thought it was impossible, her face became even more ugly with disapproval.

Because I’ve seen them on the trail several times, I know they will return this way in 15 or 20 minutes.

So, I pulled out my trusty stick of chalk and wrote this:

“Dear Pink Shirt Lady… I’m grateful that I’m happy. And sad that you’re not.”

I can only imagine the consternation and the infinite acking noises she will emit when she sees my chalk-scawled message.

Love, X

Traversing The Road

Starting with a laugh… as I walked West Miller Street close to my apartment, I watched a greyish blue Chevy Traverse round the deceptively sharp curve to approach me. It was speeding of course. I walked along the right-hand side of the street on the grass. As the vehicle approached, I observed the older woman driving and notice the approaching speed bump. It’s not high profile. Had she simply driven over it, there would have been no laugh. Instead, she braked hard to avoid going over it at 35+ mph. The younger woman in the passenger seat didn’t appear to be wearing a seatbelt. She was turned sideways in the seat, drinking a presumptive soda through her straw. As the driver braked, the passenger went forward unexpectedly. I couldn’t quite see it when it happened, but she squeezed her styrofoam cup as she was jerked forward. The passenger bounced off the dashboard. Weirdly, both the driver and the passenger looked at me simultaneously as I walked and laughed. The passenger started pantomiming her displeasure toward the driver. She wildly pointed down and across her lap. I assume she was baptized in soda. I shrugged my shoulders when the driver looked at me again, having come to a full stop a couple of feet past the speed bump. When I looked back at the vehicle a few seconds later to note the make and model, I laughed again at the fact that it was wrongly named the “Traverse.” It certainly didn’t this afternoon.

Now I want to add another speed bump on top of the authorized one and watch as speeders coming from Woodland school hit it without warning. I could give it the name “Speed Wall” instead of a speed bump.

When I exited the convenience store a few minutes later, I drank my diet soda and crushed ice with enthusiasm. A nun dressed in all white entered as I held the door open for her. One of the regulars who is also quite the scam storyteller asked me if I wanted to buy some weed. With a very serious face, I said, “Yes. I need five pounds of it if you have it.” The look on his face was priceless. “Five pounds? How long will that last you?” Not missing a beat, I replied, “Oh, I’d say about nine or ten days. Can you hook me up?” He shook his head, still not realizing I was joking. “No, I can’t get anywhere near that amount!” I told him I was very disappointed in his inventory problem. I walked away, shaking my head, pretending to be concerned. I didn’t look back. I didn’t dare. There is no way I would have been able to avoid laughing.

At the intersection with Onyx Coffee, I watched as drivers carelessly drove across the crosswalk and ignored the road markings. Because I was feeling clever, I crouched down and pointed my fingers on the concrete, pretending I was a sprinter about to take off across the crosswalk. My eyes were focused on the red indicator across the street. As I did so, a white Chevy pickup pulled all the way across the crosswalk in front of me and stopped. His intention was to make a right turn, even if he had to block pedestrians to do so. I walked in front of his vehicle. Instead of pointing at the crosswalk or the sign across the street, I instead pointed at the grill of his truck. “Oh my god!” I said. And kept pointing. “You need to see this,” I told him, continuing to point. He put his truck in park and exited his truck to see what I was gesticulating toward on the front of his truck. As he did, I walked across the street and kept going. I didn’t look back that time, either. I wondered if he might get angry and return to curse at me. He’d have to make at least TWO more turns to head back in my direction, though.

When I walked two streets past my apartment, I watched a man climb inside the dumpster on the corner. He was having trouble, so I told him to use the truck fork holes as steps. He must have been a newbie to the dumpster scene. I didn’t talk to him long, but it turns out he has a decent job in the evening. He’s been scavenging and reworking furniture and different items. His truck was parked several feet away in the apartment parking lot. He also told me something interesting: that he often found construction workers’ beer in there. They often use it to hide their alcohol while they’re on the job site. He told me that last week he found a bicycle that required only a few dollars of parts – and that he sold it for $100. I wished him luck and told him that he should take a look in the dumpster at my apartment on Sunday afternoon. He thanked me.

I didn’t see another Traverse as I crossed the speed bump again.

X
.

“For The Birds”

I stopped at a hardware store on Township after work. Surprisingly, it’s named “The Hardware Store,” which confused me. I definitely wanted some watercolor art prints. I was shocked and pleased that they carried oversized outlet plates AND a huge variety of screws. I am now fully screwed, I’m pleased to report.

As the clerk checked me out, he inquired about my brooch. Being where he was, he of course didn’t refer to it as a “brooch.” No self-respecting retail clerk selling manly items would ever utter the word – even under threat of a whipping.

I laughed and asked if he wanted a rundown of possible answers.

“Ha! Of course,” he said and laughed.

“It’s a pilot’s license.”

“Really,” he seriously asked.

“Yes, it allows me to indiscriminately fly the bird anytime I wish to.” And I held up both birds using both hands to demonstrate.

Not expecting that, he laughed hard.

I listed a barrage of other explanations, some funny, some bizarre.

I’ll go back. Not just for the great supply of items, but also to test their credulity and sense of humor.

Love, X
.

Pretxel Fish Is Born

What is Pretxel Fish? Arkansas’ newest LLC. Due to the craziness of my name, Arkansas had trouble understanding that my first name is just X. I used the ongoing bureaucratic melee as a reason to replace the ‘z’ in ‘pretzel’ with an X. If ‘xylophone’ can be pronounced with an X, anything can. (One of my favorite words is ‘xanthous,’ which has acquired new meaning lately.) What is Pretzel Fish, the name from which I derived my company name? A reminder to be grateful and to experience whatever is at your feet. Not the potential of what could be or what you’d like to be. You can make moves to change your life incrementally or you can adapt and find lemon moments where you are. It’s up to you and me. I’m not sure what I will do with this new business. And that lights me up a little with both humor and expectations.

Love, X
.

Powdered Cat

Powdered Cat

Sometimes, instead of drinking my protein drink I make with recycled coffee, I opt to eat a scoop (or two) raw with a teaspoon as I start my morning. I love the texture and flavor.

This morning I woke up early and sat at my computer. My cat Güino loves to jump up and interfere and sit in my lap, his little nose popping up constantly to block my wrists as I type. In front of me were a cup of bitter coffee and a little black bowl of protein powder.

The first couple of bites of powder caused no problems other than caking my teeth temporarily with a pasty mixture. After each bite, I took a sip of coffee and petted the cat as he popped his head up for attention.

The next bite? It was like the cinnamon-challenge-gone-wrong. Somehow, I breathed in sharply as I took a spoonful of powder. It started to invade my lungs as I breathed in. This produced an involuntary cough response.

The powder spewed out of my mouth in a small cloud. Güino’s head caught the brunt of it, covering him in a fine brown powder. He looked at me in surprise, his little whiskers covered in chocolate protein powder.

And then the barrage of little sneezes started, his head bobbing strongly with each sneeze.

I laughed, ignoring the mess of powder on my lap, keyboard, and desktop.

I took the picture when Güino jumped back on my lap a couple of minutes later. I was still amused.

You can tell by the cat’s expression that he wasn’t amused.

Powdered donuts? No. Powdered cat for breakfast.

.

Another List From Social Media

.

.

.

.

I got a dose of humility again.

I patiently explained to the inconvenience store cashier that I wanted a Natural State jackpot multi draw ticket for the next 10 drawing dates. She mocked me, so I explained it again, telling her that it meant the ticket would print with one set of numbers on one line and with a corresponding date range from today and the next nine drawings. She mocked me again and then rang it up wrong. For the first time in several consecutive such encounters, I told her she was going to have to void the ticket. She launched into an angry rant at me and called me an idiot. I told her that I am indeed an idiot but that she should ask her manager how to ring up a multidraw ticket. And then I wished her a good day. I genuinely smiled at her, even as she muttered profanities under her breath.

When I drove up to the inconvenience store, a homeless person was bundled in a white blanket.

When I left, I saw him walk around the back side of the parking lot. Out of curiosity I walked around too. Behind the brick facade containing the dumpster, there was a shopping cart full of someone’s life. Next to it, a closed tent. The homeless person I had followed was not the occupant of the tent.

I shivered with the chilly March breeze.

And even though I was beyond polite to the cashier who mistreated me… Seeing that cart and the tent next to it broke up a stone in my heart.

I don’t have a moral to the story. Just grateful for my life.

Love, X

.

.

.

.

.

I hadn’t seen Max the terrier in a few days. He got excited and jumped up to me to give me hugs and kisses as I petted him…

.

.

That’s the moon next to the stop sign. Sirens racing past, dogs barking, sitting on the patio with my sister as she talks to one of her 300,000 friends. An unexpected life, a moment in time…

.

.

In LR, making sister seem annoyed with me. Enjoying time and also missing home.

.

.

I used my night vision lens to snap this picture at around 6:00 a.m. Scull Creek roars and overflows on both sides of me. The bright moon of course is diffused by the filter but I took a mental snapshot too. I’ll look back in a year and probably feel like 10 years have elapsed. A beautiful moment, full of thoughts and delights for the eye.
.

.

Zen proverb modernized:

A farmer arrives home late from the day in the fields. He finds his wife of 30 years in bed with another man.

“Is dinner ready?” He asked her.

She emerged from the bedroom, hair a mess and bewildered.

“Aren’t you going to ask why I was in bed with another man?”

“Why? Would it change what happened? And I still need to eat.”

Acceptance.

Not defeat.

Life relentlessly marches forward, even as things out of your control happen.

.

.

I finally got the hint and realized that I’m not attractive. My proctologist stuck his finger in my mouth.

.

.

“Rain can’t wash away enthusiasm.” – X

.

.

“Some people at full tables will wish they were you.” – a quote contained in a video sent to me by my favorite cousin. It’s a good reminder that a lot of people don’t live deliberate lives, or the ones they wish contained them.

.

.

Operation Blue Justice is going exceedingly well at work today!

.

.

Dubious~Optimistic FB Post #637: the percentage of known drug dealers in my apartment building is now down to 14%. I’m confident that no one has ever posted this type of statistic on their personal Facebook before.

.

.

If you hear the klaxon call for help, know that I will be there quicker than Metamucil clears out a senior citizen. I will fight for justice and also tacos.

Love, X

.

.

“If you put both arms out, he will hug and nuzzle your neck and face,” the owner of the large dog told me, as I kneeled on the trail’s edge.

I put both hands out palms up. The dog wagged his tail and put one paw on my hands. As I leaned forward, the dog put its nose against the side of my neck and I rubbed its flanks and neck. I laughed and watched its tail wag ferociously.

When I stood up, the dog barked a single time, a pop against the quiet and the dark around the trail.

“He wants another one,” the owner said.

I kneeled and got another hug from the dog.

“If you put both arms out, you’ll get a hug.”

I wish the entire world would stop long enough to absorb that lesson.

Love, X

.

.

I like to get everyone to use hand sanitizer. Not for hygiene, but because it looks like they are hatching evil plans when they use it.

.

.

.

.



Güino and I in an imaginary world, where colors blend and bend to the will of those seeing them. Where the sun both sets and rises simultaneously.

.

.

Another famous painting suffers at my creative mercy. 🙂
PS That’s my Uncle Buck in the bathtub behind me.

.

.

“Always wear two socks,” I was taught, so I put them both on one foot for the day. “Be happy,” they said, forgetting to tell us that happiness is being grateful for the opportunities in front of us rather than what we think we think we’ve lost or what we want.

-X

.

.

.

.

.

.

Two women were jogging on the trail, both with dogs on leashes and flashlights blazing. One of the dogs saw me and surprised its owner by barking and yanking the leash free. The dog continued to bark and ran towards me. I kneeled down and waited to see if I was going to get mauled. The owner shouted in fright, probably assuming I was about to get a bite-sized chunk taken out of my ass. Instead, the dog ran at me full speed and jumped up on me with its paws licking my face. I made a new friend. Totes is his name. The owner was very apologetic. I petted and rubbed Totes until he decided it was time to run again.

.

.

If you wear underpants without pants, they are no longer underpants or under pants. There is a lesson here. And that lesson is that decaf isn’t the same as regular.

.

.

Redactyl got cold and started complaining. I put a blanket on him so he seems to be comfortable now.

.

.

Compared to middle managers, velociraptors are pretty tame!

.

.

My coworker Darian is a big guy. I definitely wouldn’t play seesaw with him.

He was complaining about young women being unable to cook.

Without missing a beat, I retorted, “Evidently young men these days definitely know how to eat though.”

I got a lot of laughter but I deserved a round of applause.

.

.

I sat next to the trail. An enormous blackbird came and sat directly above me, commenting vociferously with a loud cacophonous caw. When I stood up, it looked directly down at me and stared. For reasons known only to the CIA, I talked to it in broken Russian. The bird cawed at me again. It did this all three times I spoke to it. I hated to leave the bird and to return to work. It felt like that bird needed to tell me something. Probably not to talk to strange birds.

.

.

My guardian dinosaur, Redactyl, is a lot happier now that I have bedazzled him. He has the watch because of course dinosaurs have no sense of punctuality. Everything is totally Jurassic for them. He was complaining earlier about not having a hat so I’ll have to find one for him.

.

.

To prove I do have an inner voice that corrects me, I did not post my meme today, the one that said: “If assholes could fly, this place would be an airport.”

.

.

Philosophical observation: without a doubt, horses have to be the most farted upon animal on the planet.

.

.

.

.

“A keychain is a ring invented so that you can lose all of your keys at once.” How often do we stop and figure out in how many other ways we’re bundling our lives like keys?

.

.

I am a time traveler, as all we are. It flies past us, our most valuable commodity. Reality is whatever our filters tell us it is. I got a reminder yesterday just how tenuous it all can be.
.

.

.

.

My name tag is a funny variation of carpe diem. I’ll leave it to you to figure out what the translation is from Latin. (Carpe culus)

.

.

I hear birds singing hours before the sunrise. And I can imagine why. Someone asked me what’s good about the day. And I smiled and pointed at my curved lips. Enigmatically, I replied, “I brought the day with me.”

.

.

Me and Cookie Monster, imagined inside the famous painting “Rain’s Rustle.” Carry on!

.

.

My therapist recommended that I hold hands at the movies, in order to address intimacy issues. Again, she should have stipulated that none of them belonged to people I don’t know. Goodbye forever, AMC Theaters.

.

.

My roll of 350 HELLO stickers arrived. I am playing the role of Frankie Jane today. And someone surprised me with a hare brooch, making the pun that I did not have enough hair on me.

.

.

I set five alarms so I would have time to sweep off the car. But it was the Fitbit that woke me up. My cat Guino was sitting on me pawing at my arm with the Fitbit. He got his hugs in this morning. So it’s already a good day despite the snow.

.

P.S. I had zero problems driving to work in my little bitty car. Anyone who wants to make it to work should depart before the rest of us idiots get out there.

.

.

Despite the amount of sleet that had fallen, I had no problem driving in my small car around 10. It was like another world out there; even the traffic lights cast a beautiful sheen on the crystals covering everything. I felt like I was driving in a secret world, entirely new and refreshed. Tomorrow morning, I might well wake up to a blanket of lord knows what. But for tonight, it was sublime. I’ll remember this for a long time. If I didn’t have to work tomorrow, I would go out and walk a few miles, even if icicles formed on my nose. Feb. 2nd

.

.

“I do all my own stunts, but never intentionally” seems appropriate this morning. Happy Monday!

.

.

In a moment of profound victory, after weeks of doing it wrong, I realized that if turn my gallon of homemade protein drink upside down and shake it, it mixes immediately. I’ve spent so much time violently shaking the gallon, like I was having heroin withdrawals. What else have I been doing completely wrong? I’d make a list, but I don’t have a notepad that long.

.

.

.

.

I learned something: when someone says I should walk with Jesus, they should have warned me he would stroll across the lake.

.

.

I really struggled with my lunch. Now I know why. I ordered the pork chops but they accidentally gave me a plate of karate chops.

.

.

When people ask you, “How are you doing?” Interpretive dance is evidently the wrong way to answer.

.

.

The world is two kinds of people: morning people and mourning people.

.

P.S. This joke could also be interpreted somberly.

.

.

Because of my ability to explain things simply, the director told me to walk everyone through the basic premise of the new protocol. Using as much brevity and clarity as I could, I extended the middle finger of my left hand and walked away.

.

.

This morning, instead of being productive, I lay in bed, watching the sun through the big window in my bedroom. Guino staked his claim across my stomach and torso. I’m unaccustomed to being lazy. Guino had no complaints. Now, I’m sitting at my desk by the front window, watching the world whiz by and the little birds darting at my feeder. I’m happy, even as life continues to unevenly give me blessings and obstacles.

PS Guino is unhappy again; he’s scratching at the door and singing the song of his people. The landing is calling his name, as the birds chirp and beckon him. Jan 22nd

.

.

With everything going on in my life, I got a horrible reminder of what physical pain is: because I’m chewing gum more, I bit my bottom lip hard twice in the same place with my incisor. It brought blood the second time.

.

.

Ellen DeGeneres quipped: “Accept who you are. Unless you’re a serial killer.”

I don’t THINK I’m a serial killer. It could be my delusion talking, though.

Someone snarked at me that I post too many pictures of myself! And they are right! With that in mind, I of course felt compelled to update my profile picture. Not because I’m too arrogant or because I’m wowed by myself, but because it is important to feel comfortable in my own body. And I do. I’ve changed what I can. The rest? It’s inside my head, where it matters most.

“Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.” Lao Tzu

“Life is short. Smile while you still have teeth.”

Love, X

.

.

I’m standing out on the landing. The door is open and Güino is prowling in the dark, furtively looking at me to see how far I’ll let him go. It’s 52° as I watch the neighbors go about their secret business. I have Anni’s Lullaby by Patrick Pietschmann playing on the soundbar. One of the downstairs neighbors looks up with her head cocked sideways, wondering where the haunting piano melody might be coming from. I wave and she nods, then smiles. “It’s beautiful,” she said. I laughed, and the laugh caught in my throat. “Isn’t it all?” I rhetorically asked her. Because most of my neighbors are accustomed to my weird ways, she laughed too. I stand there against the railing for a few moments, thinking about my evening. Surreal is the word that best encapsulates my experience. 54 years old and capable of being surprised. Both by myself and the people around me. I let the song play a few more times, each time letting it punctuate the nocturnal air with a staccato rhythm. Were that all nights were like this. It would be difficult to complain. A day of ice cream smiles, exertion, storytelling, and feeling like I belonged exactly where I was. Jan 18th

.

.

She used my own trick against me. She handed me a white note card. It had 7 words written on it: “People change out of inspiration or desperation.”

.

.

.

.

At 4:00 a.m. the mockingbird doesn’t sing. But I can hear it hacking and clearing its throat.

.

.

Here we are, each of us, as the day breaks. All of us have a different view in front of us. But each of us shares a huge overlap of the things we find to be important. I hope your day surprises you in all the best ways. Let this be a subtle morning prayer. Optimism and one foot forward is all you need. Jan 4th

.

.