Category Archives: New Word

Pizzaheimer’s Pants

valentin-petkov-AS80CJTzM5Q-unsplash.jpg

There’s nothing quite like the realization that you might not have any pants to wear. No one wanted to see me prancing around sans pants twenty years ago; the situation hasn’t improved any, especially as pizza became my closest friend. The only time being pantsless is a benefit is when door-to-door salesmen make the mistake of ignoring my “No Soliciting” sign. The neighbors haven’t complained about screaming people fleeing my house. Since I don’t answer the door, I wouldn’t know if they did. It’s a win-win.

As a minimalist, I have the least amount of clothing of any other adult that I know. I tend to keep only a bit more than I need. After my last long-term successful weight loss, I dropped my guard and discarded the pants that looked like MC Hammer had designed my wardrobe. I’m generally relentless about getting rid of clothes I can’t or won’t wear.

Like all idiots, once I lose weight, I assume that I will somehow defy years of forgetting my promise not to get too large again.

I name this tendency/disease Pizzaheimer’s.

Over the last few months, I’ve adopted a more care-free diet, one characterized by total surrender to the joys of excessive stuffing. I tend to wear work pants instead of blue jeans. No matter how bad you think I might look in blue jeans, it’s worse. Imagine Danny DeVito wearing jeans and roller skating.

Because I have to wear slacks at work and my job being very physical, I wear both the relaxed fit and stretchy version of my preferred pants. (Note: I’m not too fond of using the word ‘slacks’ in reference to pants.) These give me the ability to kneel or bend without accidentally hitting a high note – and from splitting my the seat of my pants in an impromptu show of agility and exposed anatomy. The undesirable consequence of this is that I can put on 20 lbs without needing to get a size bigger pants. George brand pants do indeed stretch without complaint. So do I.

Because I may have to dress above my normal sloth-like appearance in a few days, it occurred to me that I might need to try on my normal dress wear pants. As you might expect, none of them fit. Either a magical seamstress has reduced them in my closet, or my battle with fat has been an unnoticed defeat. I’m going with the latter.

As a result, after work today, I had to buy more clothes, ones that don’t expose me to the risk of public nudity if I bend over. The numbers are getting a little large, too. As a general rule, if walking the distance displayed on your pants would wear you out, it’s probably not a good waist size, either.

It’s not my fault, though. I suffer from Pizzaheimer’s.

The Time Tenet

marek-prygiel-7RLztM4KdcE-unsplash.jpg

“Too much time on your hands” is criticism from those who believe their own choices are superior to those being criticized. A lot of our modern lives can technically be identified as a little bit stupid. It’s possible we’re all drinking the Kool-Aid in pursuit of our own hobbies and interests.

From my vantage point, all of of us are bit actors, engaged in our dramas of needless stupidity. I admit my own hypocrisy as I judge what people choose to do with their time, even as you might catch me alphabetizing my pasta collection or writing poetry in imaginary languages. I recognize my dedication to oddities.

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time” is a cliché for a reason.

“What a waste.”
“That’s pointless.”

Watch sitcoms or dramas? “Do” your hair? Play sports? Watch sports? Read fiction? Complain? Nap? Watch movies about killer clowns? Go to movies? Cook complicated dishes with ridiculously-named ingredients? Iron clothes? Dust? Wash car? Shop for clothes? Have pets? Hunt outside? Hunt inside? Like puzzles and crosswords? Paint your fingernails?

TMTOYH people forget that all of us do illogical, stupid, or wasteful things. All of us, especially those of us who vote. Claiming that other people have too much time on their hands falls neatly into the same hypocritical category of criticism; it serves no one.

I suggest that the “too-much-time-on-your-hands” folks have got too much time on their hands, not enough glue between their lips, and a failure to appreciate how much of their own time they spend doing ridiculous things themselves – such as criticizing other people for their choices.

To all those watching, your choices look a little ridiculous. As do mine. If I want to put on over-sized clown shoes and dance like I’ve succumbed to explosive diarrhea for a new Youtube channel, so be it.

P.S. It’s exactly as bad as the old farts who mock the younger generation for watching other people play video games, yet also spend a considerable chunk of their own lives watching other grown me in tight pants play sports. And often on television. Moreover, they pay to watch, too. Jeesh.

We All Have Our Jar of Snake Oil

feet_clownshoes_reflectyourworld-396788.jpg!d

The Quackery Commentary Inhibition: an individual’s reluctance to honestly share his or her derisive opinion about another person’s ridiculous beliefs, usually under the mistaken assumption that our own views are beyond reproach. Each of us wears clown shoes in some sense.
.
It’s a treacherous path when you wish to express your opinion about some topics. People’s interests, beliefs, and attitudes overlap to a degree based on tribe, religion, or geography. Each of us has our crazy tangents, however, ones which often trigger a disproportionate defense mechanism when someone brushes against them, either accidentally or in mockery.
.
If you’re going to put your foot in your mouth, it’s easier if you’re not wearing clown shoes when the opportunity arises.
.
The fact that we convince ourselves we need to tread lightly is in itself a powerful demonstration of how unattached we are from reason and logic. It’s a certainty that many of our friends and family silently mock some of the things we follow or believe. Anyone claiming that their beliefs perfectly match those of all their family and friends is in a cult, not a society; even then, I doubt it’s possible.
.
“Truth is not flavored by opinion.”
.
That may be true – but opinion often throws a left jab into truth’s teeth.
.
With the goal of not slaughtering any sacred cows, I’ll ignore the overall question of religion, which is the most glaring example of personal beliefs that shape people’s otherwise logical framework of living. Anyone paying attention can see that the disagreements caused by religious differences are a constant source of irritation, anger, and amusement among people. Any framework demanding certainty is already saddled with an inherent disregard for the next guy’s version of the same.
.
I have my own blind spots, many of which aren’t logical or defensible. I’ve learned to recognize their fragility when I feel irritation when given contradictory information. No one likes to eat a hamburger carved from their own sacred cow. If you are going to do so, though, you might as well break out the mustard and pickles and figure out an easier way to swallow it.
.
In the last few years, I’ve been astounded to learn that I was wrong about a few things, ones which seemed set in stone before. Among them were cornerstones of liberalism. Facts did not support them. My insistence sufficiently silenced the contradictions until a new truth materialized. Given that some truths have given way to others, it is only logical to conclude that I have other blind spots which impede me.
.
Horoscopes, ________________ , homeopathy, psychic phenomenon, Bigfoot, ghosts, ESP, witchcraft, MLM schemes of all sorts (yes, even the one you’re thinking of), and other subjects are prone to evoke a snort of derision from me. Each of them presents an opportunity to examine their veracity, as well as a reciprocal reminder to consider what lunacy I might believe in.
.
*I’m not making an equivalency argument here regarding the mentioned subjects. One of the defects of listing such topics is that people will immediately and erroneously make that incorrect assumption.
.
People reading this are already jumping to a mental defense of one or more of the subjects mentioned above, their intellect turned to the purpose of hurling denials back at me. Their time would be better suited by simply ignoring whatever I have to say. Echo chambers at least offer a safe haven, even as they stunt growth. It’s impossible to reason someone out of a belief they didn’t reason themselves into. Most adherence to such belief systems is self-fortifying and tends to radicalize when a perceived contradiction is introduced. A while ago, I wrote about an acquaintance who believes that all cancer is mental. It’s not just ignorance – it’s dangerous and demeaning to those who suffer as a result of disease. Challenging the acquaintance on his stupidity will only cement his mistaken ideas.
.
A symptom of whether I place any credence in a particular belief is how I respond to humor or satire involving the subject. The faster I laugh, the more likely it is that I find the entire issue to be ridiculous or subjectively impossible to be sure of. I’ve also become a fervent believer in the fact that those who noticeably lack a sense of humor about a particular subject are indicating cognitive dissonance in its regard. If they otherwise have a definite sense of humor and yet belligerently respond to any commentary or critique of their particular belief, it’s a certainty that it is a belief that can’t withstand scrutiny. This observation applies to me, too; if I find myself mentally lashing out, it’s a sign that I’ve hit the crossroads between belief and sustainability.
.
Irritation becomes the carpet under which unsupported beliefs are swept.
.
The problem arises when we share our disbelief with people around us, especially people full of humor and intellect. Throwing a dart at their dubious reverence invariably causes a medical condition known as “pissing them off.” More dangerous than the Carpet Viper is the angry intellectual. Even more fatal than the fierce intellectual is the knuckle-dragger. There are few people enlightened enough to look the other way without anger if their beliefs are challenged.
.
When we don’t or can’t share our disagreement, it infects other areas of our lives and makes us less authentic. We become avatars and shadows on a stage, playing roles which deny what motivates us. Over time, we lose the real connection we have to one another, even if the link reveals profound differences in belief. If I can’t make a face every time you throw salt over your shoulder or claim to have seen a ghost, neither of us is getting a real connection from one another.
.
It’s a fool’s errand to apologize in advance if I’ve stepped on toes. In honesty, there’s no way that you don’t listen to me or read some of my posts and think, “That guy is missing a few bolts.” It’s hypocrisy to wish to shout me down and simultaneously refuse to agree that you do the same thing, even if you don’t want to get caught in the act.
.
All of us, each day, roll our eyes at the idiocy our cohorts believe. To simulate this experience, watch a couple of hours of Daystar television.
.
Everyone should take a moment and find the Wikipedia pages for Donald Gary Young, Daniel David Palmer, or the Barnum/Forer Effect, among others. Regardless of the modern incarnation of whatever it is you might find worthwhile about a particular subject, many of the things I mentioned find their genesis in doubtful science. Whether they’ve evolved is subject to opinion. The people involved were not the type of people I would find myself agreeing with, nor their beliefs compelling.
.
I could be wrong.
.
Can you?
.
More importantly, can you tell me you think some of my subjective beliefs are wrong?
.
I won’t get too bent out of shape about it if you do – but don’t expect me to go to a chiropractor for the bend if you do.
.

The Grudge Conclusion

kelly-sikkema-_whs7FPfkwQ-unsplash

 

The Grudge Conclusion:

If you consume social media, you’ll get tired of simpletons saying that all grudges are synonymous. If someone doesn’t want to talk to you because you significantly abused or harmed them, it isn’t a grudge: it’s wisdom disguised as self-protection. If the simpletons persist in wrongly classifying your decision, they are clearly indicating to you that they hold a low opinion of you – or a disproportionate opinion of themselves.

This Is The World’s Best Post

tina-dawson-b_X4aBtHndE-unsplash.jpg

 

“The World’s Best” anything is nonsensical.

If you look closely, you’ll see that the woman in the picture is eating raw meat. On the table, she has a cut tomato, black licorice, and maynnaise. On the further counter, there’s a fruitcake and plate of sushi. Chances are, one of those things gives you the urge to hurl your lunch.

It seems like a good cliché for a headline or when used as an easy marketing hook. When I see it, though, I wince. In the past, I was blasted by a critic who screamed at me for using the cliché, as well the one comparing anything to crack. I pointed out that criticizing me was acknowledging that my opinion held value. (Because who goes out of their way to attack a meaningless opinion?)

Tastes vary wildly. One man’s poison is another man’s passion. Perversely, some people love eating or ingesting actual poison – and I’m not referring to people who enjoy eating at Hardee’s.

Whether it’s raisins, black licorice, mayonnaise, fruitcake, whiskey, celery, beets, meats cooked rare, meats cooked well-done, eggs over easy, or dried crickets, there is no universal standard for food.

When I was growing up, a lot of Southerners would foolishly say, “You don’t know what’s good!” They’d smack their lips in condemnation at my refusal to eat some of the things they identified as ‘food.’ Some of these same people loved eating raw hamburger meat, spoonfuls of Crisco or lard, and half-cooked chicken gizzards, usually as they cooked over their stoves with a cigarette dangling from their lips. They also invariably had a tub of warm mayonnaise always open and sitting on the counter.

“The World’s Best” is a meaningless title, much in the same way all awards based on subjective taste are without foundation.

I like bitter, smoky coffee. My wife hates it. I like burned, dry food of all kinds, unlike literally everyone else. Hash browns? Burned. (But I do love standard hash browns too.) Some people hate shaved parmesan because it smells like foot odor. A ripe tomato is like a mouthful of phlegm for some and a delicacy for others. Milk, which is literally nutrition for only baby cows, gives many people the urge to vomit.

The two words, “I like,” are the critical component. If you like it, it’s good.

X’s Food Opinion Edict states: “All food is opinion.”

We can overlap on taste, of course, but it’s a rarity to find any two people whose opinion regarding taste is congruent.

Stop pretending that a universal standard for taste exists.

Like Buddy the Elf, he thought he’d found the world’s best cup of coffee, simply because the sign outside said so.

On the other hand, this is the world’s best post, right?

The Punctuality Reciprocity Observation

jeremy-beadle-qnU-UR0o5X8-unsplash

The Punctuality Reciprocity Observation: The obligation for honoring one’s appointments is reciprocal between customer and business. An individual’s time is worth as much as that of a business or business owner.

It’s a struggle to see posts about “no-shows” in a profession. It’s a common theme in social media, especially with family and friends as they deal with smaller businesses.

I tend to want to write on the posts and gently say, “Move on to another business,” as everyone involved is participating voluntarily and the world is full of other opportunities. This is doubly true when I see friends and family squabbling over ongoing discourtesy with appointments and obligations.

Although our opinions vary regarding the importance of punctuality, we all can agree that where business is concerned, it is discourteous to have a track record of being late, forgetful, or inattentive.

It’s true that a person’s livelihood depends on reliability from the customer.

The obligation is reciprocal, however.

Any customer is likely to have a busy schedule, too, perhaps with a business of their own. It’s incredibly short-sighted for business owners to complain that they shouldn’t be held accountable for punctuality. Their customers are in the same boat, rowing through life with a multitude of obligations and responsibilities. In your role as a business owner, it is entirely on you to design your life, business, and tools in a such a way as to eliminate the chance that a customer will be relegated to the ‘lesser’ priority.

As a customer, it is your responsibility to honor your commitments to the business – and willingly pay the penalty for not holding up your end of the agreement.

I practice what I preach.

Small business owners are people, too, of course. This means that while they tend to judge themselves through the lens of good intentions, they also tend to assume worse motivations for other people, especially customers, as they arrive late, forget appointments, don’t tip as expected, etc.

We forgive ourselves and blame others to a varying degree.

If you are doing business with a friend, it’s more important than ever to proceed cautiously. You have to decide whether the friendship is worth the risk of becoming frustrated with someone who seemingly doesn’t appreciate one’s time or loyalty.

To be clear, I’m not referring to one-off instances of letting someone down. Most of us understand that there is a difference between sustained discourteousness and a one-time problem. We can overlook any excuse, reason or craziness once, twice, and sometimes three times – and probably laugh about it later. Each situation is different, however, and even this general exception can be ignored in some circumstances.

I once gave up and sold a house after countless upgrades and renovations: windows, siding, doors, electrical, plumbing, and trees. I simply couldn’t get a contractor to return, even if we agreed to exorbitant pricing. We had already been the victims of contractor fraud – for several thousand dollars and had multiple instances of people simply not showing up, calling, or following up.

For my part, I work hard to have a “default” position. If I agree to an appointment, I have no problem paying a penalty if I no-show. This is especially true if the business is unable to replace my absence with another customer. In my case, I see the necessity of it. My wife laughs at me about this sometimes. That’s okay. When I do have a problem I like to think it gives me a slight advantage. If I’m willing to pay for being late for forgetting a business appointment, I can more easily expect the same from a business. I often overtip for the same reason, even if the service was atrocious. As with lateness, I can almost always laugh it off. Sometimes, though, it is beyond vexing and in those instances, I want the ability to freely criticize.
There are too many modern conveniences to help us manage our calendars and obligations. A business owner has no valid reason to excuse away a customer’s needs. Things happen to all of us. A business owner has an extra level of required diligence, however, as she or she is the one advertising to others that outside responsibilities and negligence won’t affect the product or service they provide.

In my experience, I’ve learned that a business which forgets or ignores an appointment even once is a red flag. It’s easy to forgive and forget most nuisances regarding a business or person failing to show up or waste your time. As these instances accumulate, however, you learn that it’s better to move on to someone with an untried record. It’s true that the next choice might be no better, but at least hard feelings won’t pile up beyond those involved.

I think most of us will agree that people who are late or no-shows tend to continue to exhibit the same behavior; the only thing which changes is our accumulated frustration with it.

For small business owners: release customers if they aren’t reliable with appointments or payment, even if they are friends or family.

For customers, reward attentiveness with your presence and money. In lieu of resentment, though, move on to another business, one which needs and values your time and dollars.

If you do business with a friend, try to separate your connection from the necessity of moving along before your connection becomes strained by resentment.

The truth is that most people avoid confrontation at any cost. They simply walk away without explanation. It’s awkward for everyone involved.

A Misplaced Adverb

20190517_122235

My Dashboard Dinosaur has brought me great luck. I can’t say as much for whoever was previously inside that police outline in my driveway.

.

.

Best opening line for a play or book: “He ran through the door as if it weren’t closed.”

.

.

I think “Scream Door” is a better name than Screen Door, because if a child lets it slam, there will certainly be screaming.  #newword

.

.

I hit a deer this morning. He had no defense against either a left hook or right jab.

.

.

Because I’m dedicated to the aggressive abolition of all popular card games, the FBI has nicknamed me the Unobomber.

.

.

My favorite radio station’s programming manager is being charged with arson. Luke Bryan’s “singing” burned my ears so badly that I can’t hear a word my wife is saying.

.

.

66838320_10158586935854115_6944066217518825472_o

A woman was being brutally mean. It was the relentless and unredeeming kind of anger manifested as a non-stop verbal attack. I’m not proud of repaying her cruelty in kind. But I am pleased with my quick reply. I’d ignored at least twenty bouts of vileness.

When she continued to belittle and berate, I held up a hand. “We have more in common than not. We have a common enemy.”

Momentarily confused, she said, “Oh yeah? Who’s that?”

“Based on preliminary study, I’d say it’s a three-way tie between french fries, the delusion that people care what we say, and the inability to shut up.”

Epilogue: she’s REALLY mad now, with the benefit that she’ll be silent in my direction for quite a while.

.

.

It was only after a surprise trip to Germany did Ralph Wiedersehen realize why his friends of German origin laughed each time they said goodbye to him.

.

.

“Ask your doctor if dying due to lack of health insurance is right for you.” – Advertisement

.

.

I nicknamed my management team “AC,” because evidently they are powered by 120 dolts.

.

.

I found a snake in the garage.

“Can you identify it?” my wife asked.

“I don’t need to – it has a driver’s license,” I replied.

.

.

“Stop paying full price,” the sign said. So I ran like hell.

.

.

People are interested in how I learned Spanish until I tell them, “Large doses of LSD.” It won’t work for everyone, sure, but no one will notice what language you’re speaking when your pants are made out of banana peels.

.

.

I wrote the best joke ever written a few minutes ago.
This isn’t the joke.
This is the tribute.

.

.

 

The Bathrobe Rule

Painnt_190612115150

The Bathrobe Rule:
Some things need only to be seen once.

.

.

 

Only after writing this to encompass a variety of situations did the overwhelming interpretation occur to me. A given movie: once. A particular place: once. A neighbor taking the garbage out in the assumed cover of darkness while wearing a deficient bathrobe: once