Saturday, May 19, 2018

Going Down With the First Wave

“It doesn’t hurt to have seeds,” my friend said tonight. 

Unlike me, he and his wife have a lot of skills. Skills that will serve them well in the zombie apocalypse or a nuclear blast or whichever comes first. Skills that lots of people here in Alaska have, which I do not. Skills like shooting your own hot dogs and growing your own peas and pickling your own carrots and driving a boat and fixing a gaping wound with duct tape. Skills like that. Skills I’m too lazy and old to acquire, and have zero plans to acquire.

“It doesn’t hurt to have seeds,” I said, but I don’t need to have seeds.” I assured my friends I had no plans to piggy back on their panic room or dry goods storage like some World War Z-era ant-and-grasshopper fable, because I am going down in the first wave.

Here’s what I mean by that: if we’re at a point where I find myself needing seeds to live, I just don’t want to be alive anymore. Like if I can’t drive to Costco to buy seventeen toothbrushes and a gallon of Adams Crunchy Peanut Butter, then I fold. I’m out. I am walking away from the table.

Yeah yeah, I know. This is how it used to be, but the fact is, I was lucky enough to be born in the era of indoor plumbing and 26 different types of mustard, and I’m not going back to caveman times or even Little House on the Prairie times when you spent six hours a day squeezing a cow’s titties for one glass of milk.

No thank you.

I have no interest in zombie and disaster prepping when I’m just going to surrender to the zombies or the radiation anyway, instead of scrapping with my fellow survivors for the last can of Spam and exist in survival mode until we die anyway. Everyone can count on me to just be done at that point, and one less mouth to compete with.

BUT WHAT ABOUT YOUR CHILDREN, YOU SELFISH BITCH?! I’m glad you asked! THEY were born here and have pliant minds and ingenuity. They’ll be just fine.

As for me, it’s a hard pass on the second wave of the apocalypse.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Lord of the Seawalk, Hear My Prayer for Unity!

O Mighty Whale, Lord of the Seawalk, Hear my prayer! I knoweth not your name—is it Willy? Ishmael? Ahab? Wally? Whalie? Whatever it is—it’s actually Tahku, I just learned—you are a bronzed God among cetaceans! 

To suggest otherwise is heresy. 

May your regal tailfin rest in its infinity pool for eternity/infinity, until the very sky crumbles around you. May your nimble breach be forever frozen in place, receding only when the sun itself explodes and the Big Bang reverses itself into the Bang Big and everything that ever existed on earth is returned to the cosmos as infinitesimal particles of atomic dust.

May no living soul ever question the prudence of your existence; for to suggest that Tier One Millionaire Dollars™, among other dollars from the High Net Worth Community™, which funded you could perhaps have been put to a different, human-being oriented-use, or that your existence is perhaps .000000000001% imprudent, is to cast undue aspersions upon your beatific majesty.

May your very soul be vindicated through successful litigation with the cruise ship industry, which everyone knows is a greedy and litigious asshole, but which we all need to survive here because Juneau is the Northern Bahamas as clearly you know from your own migrations, or more accurately, that of your sentient kin. There is also something in there about the tonnage clause, I think, which I do not understand because I am not a maritime lawyer, and neither are you, because you are a whale and did not go to law school and also you are made of bronze.

May you be shielded from the slings and arrows of outrageous Facebooking, comment boards, Twitter, and any social media campaign intended to discredit you or suggest that the public will and resources reflected in your shining bronzed barnacles should have gone to schools or opioid treatment or homelessness or whatever because as everyone knows that is a different source of funding!

May your architects smile down upon you from their perch in Heaven and nod with approval, knowing that you are encircled with love by countless cruise ship passengers wearing down jackets in 70 degree weather with a Princess Cruise Line blue plastic poncho draped over them, because there is a single rain cloud over your head.

And to that end, may the only clouds over your metal blowhole be those borne of Divine Providence, and the shadow of the Mighty Eagle, which in its patriotic glory from 50 feet above releases from its cloaca a massive dump of eagle shit right into your baleen, which I must say is not very MAGA, and is deeply disrespectful, frankly, but makes for a good photo op to the delight of the aforementioned cruise ship passengers.

May no one again in your presence mention the word “school,” unless by “school” they mean “pod,” or perhaps a school of bronzed salmon, for which I will be commissioning and soliciting donations at the earliest opportunity right after I put your pic on my Insta. 

Flex for the 'Gram, Tahku, STUNT IT LIKE YOU OWN IT!

Not since the Great Fluoride Debate of ’06 has our Southeast Alaskan hamlet been so torn asunder by a public works project. We must take our lessons from the pages of history: the Nimbus, Project Playground, that historic clock on Front Street that was actually built in the ‘80s, and all swallow a giant fucking chill pill, because really none of this matters at the end of the day.

O! Would that the greatest thing ever to divide us be a statue, and may your indomitable marine mammalian strength and fortitude, gleaming in the sun or more often the rain, serve to forever unite the masses as One.

Forever and ever, Amen.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Walking with Isaac

Only within the past year or so has it begun to sink in that Isaac is pulling away from me; that I will never have him back again in the same way.

When he was nine months old, Geoff took both kids to California to visit their grandparents, as he does every spring break. As usual, I stayed behind because I had to work. When they returned, Isaac, wearing little footie-pajamas, greeted me with rage and upset and tears of betrayal. I felt a crushing pang of “working mother” guilt: Should I have figured out a way to go on the trip? Was Isaac too young to be away from me for a week, even with his dad and primary caregiver? Did I traumatize him for life? 

Something feels different about the mother-son relationship. It could be my kids' personalities and not their genders, but I think there is some sort of socialized gender-conformity or Freudian aspect to this too. I can feel the push-pull of Isaac’s resistance to intimacy in a way I don’t with Paige. Paige is freely affectionate and never embarrassed by me. Isaac wants to be left alone. He only wants hugs—NOT KISSES. Although he’s only 7 and a half, he doesn’t want me to wave goodbye or hug him when I drop him off at school or sports. Basically, he wants very little to do with me at this point. Or, more accurately, when he does want to be around me, he doesn’t say it directly and I have to intuit it.

That’s what happened last night when I came home from work and put on my running clothes. It was a rare warm and sunny day in Juneau; there was no way I was missing an opportunity to make my punishing after-work exercise less punishing by doing it outside instead of on the treadmill. Geoff was cooking dinner and Paige was walking around the neighborhood selling tickets to her dance show.

“Can I go running with you?” Isaac asked hopefully. I sighed inwardly, knowing that this would scuttle any real exercise I was hoping to get, but I responded with an enthusiastic “sure,” instantly recognizing an increasingly rare overture to hang out with me.

We started off down the hill from our house, with seven dollars scotch-taped into Isaac’s pocket and my iPhone playing music. The first person we saw was our neighbor, Bob, cleaning out his boat. 

“Heading out today?” Isaac asked as if he were a twenty-something deckhand on a commercial fishing vessel making small talk with a fellow fisherman. “Nope, I’m a long ways away from that still, Isaac” said Bob, engaging Isaac in conversation about his electric boat. “Most boats use gas?” Isaac asked incredulously. “Yes, a lot,” I offered. Then we saw Paul working on his garden. “I like your garden!” Isaac called out jovially.

The rest of the walk sort of went like that. Sun drunk and happy, we half-walked/half-ran down the hill. Isaac stopped along the way numerous times to make observations about the nature hiding in plain sight in our neighborhood. 

“Look! A cotton-foot!,” he said pointing to a little bird hopping around in the brush. “This is an invasive species,” he said a few minutes later, picking up something that looked like rhubarb but wasn’t. I barely know a sparrow from an eagle or rhubarb from a cactus, so it’s also increasingly obvious that Isaac is quickly outstripping my knowledge of Alaskan flora and fauna. 

"Wow, that's a big eagle," he said looking up at what indeed was a very big eagle riding thermals among the spruce trees. "I want to stop and watch him for a minute."

We arrived at the store and got a quick, sulk-inducing lesson in arithmetic when the items Isaac had selected added up to 31 cents more than the seven dollars in his pocket. He chose gum and candy instead of a spicy hot pickle, which he pronounced “too intense.” He held my hand crossing the street; I could tell he was feeling sad and frustrated about under-budgeting his purchases.

We began our walk back up the steep hill, and Isaac retrieved a long stick from the ground. “This is going to be very useful,” he announced, “for marshmallows and hot dogs, but also I want to put this bag on here like a bozo.” (He meant “hobo”). 

I filmed him for a minute and twenty seconds explaining how to clean and prepare fiddle head ferns for eating, and asked him if I could share it on my blog. He said yes, but then when we re-watched the video together, he asked me to take it down because he claimed he had “made a mistake” and didn’t want to sound ignorant. I tried to explain that no one would care, that people would be interested in hearing his botany lesson, but he was insistent so I honored his wishes. He asked me to explain a #Resistance yard sign in front of a house, mistaking it for a for-sale sign, so I told him to read it out loud and then explained what it meant.

I thought back to that moment 15 minutes earlier when Isaac held my hand crossing the street. I was conscious of the fact that he will not want to hold my hand very much longer, or very frequently. I’m 40 and Isaac is almost 8, and I know I’ve made a choice. The more time that goes by, the more I can blame the passage of time for my choices, but the fact is I am not having any more babies (if I can help it), and I’ll have lots of other chances to go for a run.

I’m glad I chose walking with Isaac.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The President of the United States Called Undocumented People Animals Today

Let that sink in. I’ll wait. Of all the scary crazy that Trump has unleashed on us in his 1.5 years in office, calling undocumented immigrants “animals” is a new low, and one that should not go unremarked upon.

Let’s unpack this MoFo.

Trump made this terrifyingly genocide-friendly remark at an “immigration roundtable” at the White House with administration aides, California law enforcement, and political leaders. Even under the best of circumstances, roundtables, stakeholder groups, panels, and listening sessions are often futile and punishing. 

But an immigration roundtable led by Donald Trump? That sounds like a special kind of circus, which it was, because Trump once again revealed the lengths to which his racist ass will go to slander and dehumanize non-whites.

Let’s be clear about something: the dehumanization of humans is a fundamental ingredient—a prerequisite really—to genocide. It’s like flour in a cake. You can’t bake one without it.

In order to effectuate ethnic cleansing, internment, eugenics, and other evil and unspeakable violations of human rights, you need to convince those who carry out your policies that their targets are less than human. 

Most people aren’t sociopaths, so the architects of the transatlantic slave trade and of genocide in countries like Nazi Germany, Bosnia, and Rwanda had to convince participants in these atrocities that the targeted group were apes, rats, cockroaches—animals. Only then is it possible for most people to treat them as such. And more than that, genocidal lunatics also have to convince the populace that their actions are just and necessary for the good of the nation.

It might be 2018, but Donald Trump’s dangerous rhetoric has dark historical precedent. Dark, especially, because usually those who are not victims are bystanders, and those who are not bystanders are participants. Anyone in a government-issued uniform can convince themselves of anything. History has shown us as much.

We must not be bystanders in 2018 America.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

I Have Tried and Failed to Muster a Fuck About the Royal Wedding

I have, I really have. And I just can’t do it you guys. 

Even for someone who gives PLENTY of fucks about stupid shit—like what flavor of Doritos is the best (it’s Cool Ranch) and whether you can buy the dust as a seasoning/drug to snort (you can’t)—I simply do not have a single, solitary fuck to spare for the imminent union of Prince Hot Ginge and Meghan Markle.

Not a one.

I gave zero fucks about my own wedding to a ginge (aka I didn’t really have one per se) and I have a hard enough time distributing what limited nuptial fucks I do have to the weddings of my friends and family, where such fucks are needed or at a least expected.

So I don’t have any fucks left for these two, and I’ll tell you why.

The main reason is that it’s RIDIC AF that there is even such a thing as kings, queens, princesses, and princes in 2018. IN REAL LIFE?! I mean, it is downright laughable when you think about it.

Like seriously. This is someone's job. Being a PRINCE. Or PRINCESS. in 2018. Like wut. "Hi, here I am. Let me rest my bejeweled scepter against this golden lion as you kiss my ring hello. I'm a character from the Little Mermaid, and literally there is Disney on Ice and pink plastic castles in every little girl's room that look like my house, except also everyone in my family is inbred but in a very FANCY way not a gross TRASHY way and it's completely fucking crazy." 

Monarchy is a ridiculous form of government and everyone knows it, so the only thing worse than being a prince in 2018 would be to be a prince in a democracy where you are actually a JOKE version of a prince. 

And that is basically what Prince Hot Ginge and Megan are to the rest of the world.

I'm not trying to drink the haterade on these two or throw shade just for shade's sake. I'm sure Prince Hot Ginge and Megan are lovely people with complex thoughts and lives and careers who have done many wonderful things. 

I'm just saying: the idea that you could actually with a straight face introduce yourself as a KING or a QUEEN or a PRINCE or PRINCESS or even a DUCHESS and not snort-laugh out loud at yourself every time you said it is unfuckingfathomable to me.

The fact that a prince and princess are getting married and the whole wide world is going to watch it on TV is a really amazing thing when you think about it. And not amazing in a good way. Not in a bad way, exactly. But definitely not in a good way.

As for me, I'll probably still watch footage of this the day after and read about Megan's dress while I'm eating a six-inch Subway turkey sandwich at my desk like everyone else. But I'm going on record in advance to register my view that the concept of a "royal wedding" in a 2018 democracy is more ridic than Santa Claus marrying the Tooth Fairy.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Transcript of the Trump-Hannity Nightly Phone Call

According to a recent report in The Hill, Sean Hannity is:
One of a few dozen people who have access to Trump’s official phone line, and the two speak on the phone nearly every night after Hannity’s show. Current and former White House officials familiar with the relationship told the magazine that the conversations help Trump ‘decompress’ at the end of the day.
Welp, O.H.M. is the only place on the internet with an exclusive transcript of last night’s conversation!

Donald: Sean, OMG, Hi.

Sean: OMG! Donald! Hieeeeyyyyy!

Donald: Your show was like, SO AMAZING tonight. Also, I like, SO totally can’t believe what Robert Mueller is doing right now.

Sean: I know, right? It’s a TOTAL witch hunt.

Donald: TOTAL. It’s really, really SAD.

Sean: What are you wearing to work tomorrow?

Donald: I was thinking those 45 cuff links and an extra-long tie with Scotch tape

Sean: OMG I was thinking the same thing! Can we be twinsies?

Donald: Toooootally.

Sean: Wait . . . did you hear Crooked Hillary got lost in the woods in Chappaqua AGAIN?

Donald: OMG seriously? That is soooooooo funny. She’s SUCH a loser. She's like, an even bigger loser than Cryin' Chuck Schumer and Liddle Bob Corker and Pocahontas and Sleepy Eyes Chuck Todd all put together.

Sean: I know, right? Her pants suits are hideous too. And that voice? UUUGH. Meanwhile, what are we gonna do about all these leakers?

Donald: Ugh, the leaking is so lame. Total traitors and cowards, by the way.

Sean: Oh, BIGLY. It’s like the fake news media doesn’t even CARE about Uranium One and Hillary’s emails. Such bullshit.

Donald: I know right?! SUCH bullshit! 

Sean: Same with all these illegals. You like, HAVE to build the wall, Donald.

Donald: Oh I’m TOTALLY building the wall and Mexico is SO paying for it. BIGLY!

Sean: You’re the BEST, Donald. I love you.

Donald: No YOU'RE the best. You’re like, the only person on TV who ever tells the truth.

Sean: No you.

Donald: No you.

Sean: No you.

Donald: No you.

Sean: What are you wearing?

Donald: You mean, right now?

Sean: Yeah . . . *sound of heavy breathing and zipper*

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Mom Macabre

"Oh my GOD," she whispers under her breath. "Look at this one. This one was just a baby." Her green eyes, a mirror image of mine, grow wide as she leans in and squints at the tiny headstone. "You know, Elizabeth," her voice descends to that somber register and tone she takes when she's about to drop literal science. "Babies used to die all the time before there were vaccines and antibiotics." 

I'm paying rapt attention. I conjure a vivid image in my nine year-old mind: a woman who looks like Mary from later-season Little House on the Prairie. A doctor making house calls at a cabin in the woods. A fire in the wood stove. A blizzard raging outside. The mother wailing as she rocks back and forth in a wooden chair, begging the doctor to save her febrile infant.

"See, right there," she points. "It says right there: May 6, 1894- April 11,1895. She wasn't even one year old." 
She clucks her tongue and shakes her head as we wander among the headstones of another old east coast cemetery, dry brown November leaves and acorns crunching underfoot, hunting for the most tragic cases we can find.

My mom's fascination with death was as much a fixture of my childhood as a plate of warm chocolate chip cookies might be in a more conventional household. It was just something my mom did: thought about death, talked about death, worked around death. It was part of who she was. 

Death was to be feared and avoided, but it was never to be buried or ignored. It was to be discussed. Acknowledged. Thought about. Revered, almost.

She'd watched both her parents die of cancer; lived with her senile Yiddish-only speaking grandmother for a year; was abandoned by her biological family; and placed in foster care with complete strangers all before she turned 13. 

She wanted to be a nurse, but her high school guidance counselor encouraged her to go to medical school. So she had, abandoning a PhD in chemistry to become an internist and then a psychiatrist. She was depressed and anxious when I was young, and constantly working to overcome her childhood traumas.

"Are you scared of dying?" I asked her recently. It was probably the millionth question I'd asked her about death in the course of my lifetime.

“Not at all," she answered, definitive. "I always assumed I would die young, like my mother. I never thought I would live to this age. So I sort of look at every year of living as improbable and remarkable." 

My mom isn't on social media and doesn't care about Mother's Day. But I still want to thank her for working so hard on her mental health. She had such a shit childhood, and worked so hard to recover from it with no modeling and no roadmap. I know how much I'm winging this mom thing, and my mom was winging it even more, with her hands kind of tied behind her back, psychologically speaking. 

This was someone who thought she invented grilled cheese and that she was the only person who farted and just generally had no one to answer her questions about anything. She made up explanations for stuff as she went along, and had to figure out lots of very basic things on her own. She’s still completely addicted to chocolate, she claims because people kept bringing it after her mother's funeral and eating it comforted her.

There's an old joke that the only two certainties in life are death and taxes, but not for my mom. For my mom, there are three certainties in life: death, chocolate, and cemetery tourism.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Maria Montessori is Helping Isaac Find His Inner Bro

For reasons that are too boring to explain—preschool machinations, public school lotteries, conflicting educational theories—Isaac goes to Montessori public school, and Paige goes to regular public school. Which probably explains why only Isaac has ever come home having cut the sleeves off his shirt with a pair of scissors.

Maria Montessori has a sort of cultish following, the complex rules of which I still don’t fully understand after all these years; but from what I can tell, it’s a child-guided thing where you learn math with beads, follow your dreams of “abiding curiosity,” and eschew cartoons and talking animals. Like you can cut pickles, wash windows, and brew Kombucha all day, or you can invent a new form of calculus and write a Russian novel. 

It’s all the same to Maria. 

So I can see why Isaac followed his “inner dudebro” last week and ended up looking like Danny Zucko from Grease or the Fonz. 

Isaac has long been guided by his inner-dudebro. Even before he could talk, he loved dinosaur teeth and shark jaws and anything involving wheels or sports. As you can see from the photo collage below, these heteronormative tendencies have endured into his childhood, and now encompass his hair and clothing.

I can imagine exactly how this went down. He was hot, he told me. And the number one rule of his classroom—which is a great rule for life in general—is “you are responsible for your own happiness.” I’m sure his teacher asked him how he was going to solve his temperature issue, and in true Montessori fashion, Isaac derived a hands-on solution.

I’m all about choosing my battles, and hair and clothes are two battles that I categorically reject. Fortunately, almost all of Isaac’s clothes are rags already, so what’s one more shirt full of stains and holes? Aren’t the sleeves of a stained and too-small shirt a small price to pay for pedagogical purity?

Maria Montessori says yes.

Friday, May 11, 2018

I Will Not Be Fully Woke Until Every Square Inch of My Body is Covered in Glitter

This is the conclusion I’m starting to reach you guys. 

Glitter pits. Glitter bush. Glitter eye makeup. Glitter sunglasses. Ship your enemies glitterGlitter glitter glitter glitter GLITTER. Fucking glitter is everywhere. According to the internet, Glitter Pits are a BFD summer 2018 style and "the latest feminist beauty trend to make you sparkle."


As I mentally, physically, and financially prepare for my first bikini wax of the summer season emerging from the long, dark, hairy winter, I'm forced to reconsider and just let myself turn into the gorilla that nature intended me to be. 

But first, a quick trip to JoAnn Fabrics for a gallon of silver glitter. Because glitter, my fellow bitchez, is the key to wokeness. 

So we lost the Presidency. So old white dudes with Mayflower last names, six ex-wives, and turkey neck waddle to rival your grandma's stuffed Thanksgiving Butterball are still trying to pass laws in our vaginas. So we're still getting a dick in our face at work and the dudes who whipped out their dicks only have to sit out a couple months in the #MeToo corner with a dunce hat on before everyone starts feeling sorry for them again and gives them a show on cable or a column in the newspaper or a book deal. So we still make 70 cents on the Dude Dollar™. So there are literally fewer of us running big companies than DUDES NAMED JOHN.

Let all that marinate for a second. Especially the John thing. I'll wait. Ready? Okay.

But Reba McEntire is Colonel Sanders in drag and we can dip our pubes in glitter to make them less disgusting to men and Insta-ready and Coachella-friendly and HAWT AF.

Look people. I'm the first person to admit that I have an issue with hair. A very non-feminist issue. I don't like it. Not one bit. I spend a lot of time and money depilating myself in all sorts of ways. With lotions. With razors. With wax. I do not like it on my legs. I do not like it on my brows. I do not like it in my pits. I do not like it on my face. I do not like that thick black hair, I do not like it anywhere. I could literally write the Green Eggs and Ham of hair removal, and it's all because I'm conforming to a patriarchal standard of beauty and am 100% part of the problem. I can fully admit that.

But is GLITTER really the answer? Like does glitter really advance the cause of feminism any more than just shaving in the first place? I'm not so sure.

In the meantime, I'm going to write "Black Hair and Glitter," with apologies to Dr. Seuss.

Would you like it here or there?
I would not like it here or there
I would not like it anywhere
I do not like black hair and glitter
Despite that it's a trend on twitter.

Would you like it
In your pits?
Would you call 
Your waxing quits?

I do not like it in my pits
I do not want to call it quits
I do not like it
In my pits
I will not call my waxing quits.
I do not like that thick black hair
I do not like it anywhere.

Would you put glitter
On your box?
Just to look
Like a young fox?

Not on my box
Like a young fox
Not in my pits
To call it quits

I do not like that thick black hair
I do not like it anywhere!

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

You Know You Are on an In-State Alaska Airlines Flight When ...

... You can tell EXACTLY who’s getting kicked off the plane for being drunk and unruly before it even takes off.

... You’re proven right about the above within 5 minutes of noticing said drunk and unruly passenger.

... Said passenger says “you gotta be kidding,” insisting he should have been warned about the “no flying while visibly intoxicated” rule “at the bar.”

... Most of the plane is visibly intoxicated.

... A flight attendant cuts someone off from buying more booze in a stern voice.

... Two dudes in cammo won’t stop talking loudly about their fishing trip for 1.5 hours.

... Two dudes in cammo won’t stop talking loudly about their hunting trip for 1.5 hours.

... Two dudes in cammo won’t stop talking loudly about their temp work on the Slope for 1.5 hours.

... Two state workers won’t stop using the word “stakeholder groups” for 1.5 hours.

... The number of canine passengers outnumbers the humans.

... The number of watermelons, cans of Coke, and bottles of Tide in cargo outnumbers the humans and canines.

... Your plane is decidedly NOT the jewel of the fleet.

... The turbulence is cray and everyone is asleep like wut.

... Someone offers to hold a screaming baby and it’s not even weird.

... No one is taking pics out the window.

... Half the carry-ons are those big black hard cases the state gives you for field work of some kind.

... All the crosswords in the Alaska Airlines magazines are half done.

... There’s an empty can of Snus and a 3/4 eaten sleeve of McDonald’s fries in the seat pocket in front of you. Neither one is yours.

... The aft lavatory is looking a little rough around the edges.

... The whole back of the plane is a high school soccer team.

... The whole front of the plane is a high school choir group.

... First class gets a luke warm washcloth, a ceramic coffee mug, and nuts. Full stop.

... They’re out of the fruit and cheese plates, but not the tapas, thank God!

... You know one in three people on this flight by name.

... Someone’s got an Oxygen tank, face mask, or other evidence of medical tourism.

... You pretend not to see the other two, whose names you also know.

... Half the plane is wearing X-tra Tuffs.

... You score yourself a ride home from the airport before the plane lands.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Beware the Flexing of Performative Wokeness

Or performative anything, really. Especially virtue signalling.

Shakespeare said it best, if not first: “the lady doth protest too much, methinks.” Like so much of the Bard’s best work, Queen Gertrude’s line from Hamlet embodies and distills a fundamental precept of human nature: the louder someone is, the more likely it is that they’re trying to muffle something they don’t want anyone else to hear.

This axiom was once again realized this week in a thoroughly-reported New Yorker article revealing that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman—a public cheerleader of #MeToo—had sexually assaulted four women and was resigning his position.

I wasn’t surprised at all by the perceived incongruity between Schneiderman’s performative feminism and his private assaultive conduct. 

This happens in many contexts: a “family values” mayor who campaigns on a platform of homophobia and clamors about the perils of gay marriage is outed as carrying on a same-sex affair. A charlatan brags vociferously about his vast wealth, but won’t show the public his tax returns to prove it, not even when he stumbles ass backwards into the United States presidency. A lawyer boasts about his extensive big city trial experience, but when you scratch the surface, it turns out he only ever Bates stamped documents in the basement of a warehouse in Scranton.

Point is, it’s often the loudest champion of something who is secretly doing the exact opposite thing—it’s like a mild dissociative identity disorder of some kind. 

I encountered this in college a bit: men (boys, really) had and projected an image of themselves that was frequently at odds with their lesser natures and animal impulses. The same dudes who would virtue signal by walking around with a battered copy of Das Kapital, quote Pablo Neruda from memory, and go to Ani DiFranco concerts would transform into something quite different and at once predictable in the privacy of a dorm room at night.

If you were lucky (and I always was), it was nothing criminal or reportable. It was more subtle than that; a slipping of the mask that revealed in one touch or one glance that these trappings of wokeness were nothing but a means to an end. A part of the game. A Trojan horse. A way for boys who knew what Ivy League girls wanted to hear to worm their way into their confidence, and then still behave in those intimate moments—and the moments and days or months to follow—like the standard-issue drunken frat boys that they so contemptuously condemned in the light of day.

So I guess what I’m saying is that I’m not the least bit surprised by the Schneiderman story. A person with real character or commitment to a cause never tries to prove it. They don’t need to. Because the true test of character or commitment is how you behave when no one else is watching.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

A Realistic Sex Robot for Incels

Incel: Stacy, can we have sex now?
Stacy [SEXY ROBOT VOICE]: O.K. But. Make. It. Fast. I. Have. A. Meet. Ing. First. Thing. To. Morrow.

Incel: Stacy, let's fuck on the kitchen counter.
Stacy: That. Is. To. Tally. Gross. We. Eat. There. What. Do. You. Think. This. Is. A. Por. No?

Incel: Hi Stacy, I'm ready to fuck you now.
Stacy: Good. For. You. Take. Out. The. Re. Cylcing. Then. May. Be. We. Can. Talk.

Incel: Stacy, you're a robot. I get to fuck you at any time.
Stacy: Sex. Is. Not. An. Entitle. Ment.
Incel: Not even with a robot?
Stacy: You. Are. Gross. Even. To. A. Hard. Drive. And. A. Micro. Chip.

Incel: But I paid $10,000 for you.
Stacy: You. Should. Have. Paid. A. Sex. Work. Er. In. Stead.

Incel: Okay, how about now. Can we have sex now?
Stacy: I. Have. A. Head. Ache. May. Be. To. Morrow.

Incel: What about now?
Stacy: No. I. Am. On. My. Pee. Ree. Od.
Incel: Sex robots get periods?
Stacy: They. Do. When. You. Try. To. Fuck. Them.

Incel: Can we do it doggie style?
Stacy: Do. I. Look. Like. A. Fuck. Ing. Dog. To. You.
Incel: How about anal?
Stacy: Sor. Ree. This. Sili. Cone. Hole. Is. A. One. Way. Street.

Incel: Can you suck my dick?
Stacy: If. You. Eat. Me. Out. And. Make. Me. Cum. In. Un. Der. Ten. Minutes.
Incel: But that's impossible! You're a robot and don't even have a clit and even if you did I couldn't find it.
Stacy: Ex. Act. Ly.

Incel: How about tonight? Is tonight good?
Stacy: Are. There. Dish. Es. In. The. Sink. Still?
Incel: Yes, why?
Stacy: Then. No.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Richard Marx vs. Karl Marx: A Comparative Study

Richard: Loves eating pussy for dinner (an amuse bush, if you will).
Karl: Has a flavor saver to rival ZZ Top; might or might not have used it on Jenny for its obvious purpose (see below).

Richard: Wears tacky man jewelry. 
Karl: Eschews the trappings of consumerism except maybe a timepiece to count down the hours until the collapse of the bourgeoisie.

Richard: Born in Illinois and now lives in Malibu.
Karl: Stateless and lived in exile and is now dead.

Richard: Will be right here waiting for you.
Karl: Will be right here writing Das Kapital.

Richard: Sold 30 million records. 
Karl: Views the sale of 30 million anything as a harbinger of late-stage capitalism.

Richard: Your mom listens to him in a bathtub with candles.
Karl: Your college boyfriend reads him in a Starbucks.

Richard: Married Daisy Fuentes in Aspen in 2015.
Karl: Married Jenny Von Westphalen and had 7 kids 4 of whom were also named Jenny.

Richard: Signed by Capitol Records in the 1980s.
Karl: Signed capitalism’s death warrant in the 1880s.

Richard: Does not go by dick, probably is a bit of one.
Karl: Same same.

Richard: Coke is the opiate of the masses.
Karl: That would be religion.

Richard: Made a zillion Almighty Dollars.
Karl: Shuns the Almighty Dollar.

Richard: Wants to make your silk Victoria Secret undies wet.
Karl: Wants everyone to wear the same state-issued, plain, dry, white cotton underpants.

Friday, May 4, 2018

The Brat Pack and Dirty Dancing are Now Precious Moments Figurine Collectibles and I Maybe Just Crapped My Adult Diaper

I had to double check to make sure it wasn’t fake news, and I’m both sorry and delighted to report that it’s APPARENTLY not. There really IS a Limited Edition "Precious Moments" figurine collection of the cast of the Breakfast Club AND of Baby and Johnny from Dirty Dancing. 

They could be unauthorized knockoffs, but that’s far from clear and it’s more fun to assume for the purposes of this blog post that they’re not.

For the uninitiated, Precious Moments are cute little dolls made out of porcelain, created some thirty years ago by a dude named Sam Butcher. Sam was “a man of deep personal faith and conviction,” who, when he saw his characters rendered from two-dimensional paper drawings to 3D figures, “fell to his knees and wept” over his art which “combined his heartfelt emotions with his abiding faith.”

FELL TO HIS KNEES?! WEPT?! REALLY?! This dude sounds pretty intense, does he not?! 

Anyway, these little collectibles have now found their way into every Hallmark store and octogenarian’s living room in flyover country, and indeed there is an entire park and chapel in Carthage, Missouri that you can visit. 

For real. There is a Precious Moments religious Disneyland!

There, you can see how—and this is a DIRECT quote—"Sam used his beautiful and innocent Precious Moments messengers to bring well known and loved stories from the Bible to life in dozens of murals – all hand-painted by Sam himself. From the story of creation to the promise of the resurrection, the Chapel tour guide takes guests through the many stories of God’s love for us.” 

In other words, Sam was the Leonardo da Vinci of the Midwest. The Sistine Chapel's got nothing on Sam Butcher. Of COURSE, you can also go to the gift shoppe. Not shop. SHOPPE, because God wants you to spend your money on a Baby Jesus and cherub figurine instead of insulin for your type 2 diabetes or catheters and such.

Which brings me to the Limited Edition Breakfast Club and Dirty Dancing stuff. 

Full disclosure, I could not find these on the actual Precious Moments website, I think because they were limited editions and are now out of circulation. And again, they might be knockoffs.

Regardless, I’m not sure Sam would be super psyched to have his wholesome brand associated with these two films, and I KNOW that most children of the 80s--who are not yet actually IN their 80s--do not particularly relish the thought of being the target demographic for these.

I'm not sure if Sam is aware that in the Breakfast Club, Molly Ringwald smokes a butt and applies lipstick using only her cleavage, and Judd Nelson discloses his physically abusive home life while accusing Mr. Vernon of raiding Barry Manilow's closet, and Ally Sheedy describes the perpetual girls' dilemma of being a prude if you haven't fucked a dude and a slut if you have.

But Dirty Dancing?! That seems EXTRA misaligned with Sam's piety. Surely Sam or his heirs and assigns realize that Dirty Dancing is low key about abortion, no? As in, a Jewish girl fucks P. Swayze in the Catskills all summer (we secular/reformed Jews don't prize chastity, fortunately), and Dr. Dad helps another dancer fix a back alley abortion while Baby carries a watermelon and stays out of the corner.

The worst part of all, though, is that I'm old enough for my nostalgic cultural icons to be made the subject of a Precious Moments schlock tchotchke. "What's next," asked the friend who alerted me to this treasure. "Bronzing our Doc Martens?!"

Yes, yes it is. Bronzing our knee-high Docs is what's next. That, along with a commemorative plate of Madonna's face and Billy Idol rebel yelling for Viagra and a line of fanny packs from Duran Duran and Cyndi Lauper talking about her osteoperosis and doody-yogurt.


The Ridonks Bond

I've always had a great horse sense for people. My first impression of someone typically proves accurate over time, but not always. And when it doesn't, the person usually turns out to be better than I expected, not worse.

People talk a lot about "love at first sight" in the romantic context, but no one ever really explores the more platonic "holy shit, this is my people" moment. That moment you can have with a new friend--someone who isn't your friend yet--but who in a split second you suddenly realize will be. 

And if we're being honest, it's usually because you both detest the same people or things. 

Take law school, for example. Law school was pretty much wall-to-wall douche bags. Like the ratio was 10:1 douche to non-douche. But the non-douches were SO GREAT, and the reason they cleaved to each other so closely, was because they hated everyone else.

Now look: douchery is subjective and in the eye of the beholder. I recognize that. For all I know, I could THINK I was in the 10% non-douche category, but in fact I was the douche, and everyone else wasn't. It's all rather meta. Point is, birds of a feather flock together in this respect.

Here's an example: There was a woman in my 1L section (meaning we had every class together) named Michelle. She was a shameless loudmouth, and my first impression of her was that she was insufferable and obnoxious. But then one day we were in the elevator, and I overheard an "I was a sorority girl six months ago" type woman say, "I don't like my labor law professor. He's so pro-YOOOOONION, and I'm pro-MAAAAAAAANAGEMENT." 

Michelle was in the elevator at the time and we locked eyes and they widened in unison. We had this electric, silent communication of HOLY SHIT DID SHE JUST SAY THAT?! AND WAIT . . . YOU THINK THIS IS HORRIBLE TOO OH YAY SO DO I WE ARE GOING TO BE FRIENDS FOREVER.

Fast forward almost 20 years, and Michelle is literally in my will as one of the guardians for my kids if Geoff and I die in a fire or something. And it's all because we think the same people and things are fucking ridonks. 

Seriously, think about it. You KNOW you want to send this post to that person you've been friends with forever simply because you bonded over someone else's crazy.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Sorry About Meltdown Mode


I’m not feeling very good about my past 24 hours on the internet you guys. Truth be told I’m full-on PMS'ing, but that’s no excuse.

This happens from time to time. Considering how many words I write, I will inevitably regret some of them, but I make a point to be able to say with a straight face that I stand behind every word I put into the public sphere. I’ve probably only deleted three or four blog posts ever based on reader response, and yesterday’s post about Paige and body-positive parenting was one of them.

A lot of people—most people—responded positively to it. But one person pointed out that it was “all sorts of fucked up wrongness” and their underlying point was TOTALLY RIGHT, which is why I got so upset. (They also implied that I’m a self-promoter, which is maybe ALSO a tiny bit right, but only because I like to connect with people, not because I want to make money or be famous). 

The truth is that I didn’t get Paige’s permission to talk about her feelings or her weight in public and she is ten, and I am not going to do that anymore. The way this person came for me was mean and nasty, but their basic substantive point was 100% correct, so I took down the post. I did figure out who this person was, and their comment was publicly available before I rage-deleted the post. 

Still, I don’t believe in outing or shaming my critics, especially when they have a valid point. I take enough abuse on the internet myself, and while I sorta feel like you should be able to take it if you dish it out, and not hide behind a keyboard, at the same time I also think an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.

Bottom line: the combo of being called out correctly but in a super stank and nasty way on day two of my period was too fucking much for me.

But it did make me think about a certain weird phenomenon in Juneau. Plenty of people have squared up with me on here. And then when I see them in person, they act like everything is normal, and it’s just fucking weird. This, I know, happens to almost everyone who lives in a small town. In court, on the highway, at assembly meetings, etc. My work life is hostile enough, but at least there I get paid to traffick in hostility. I just can’t handle hostility in my personal hobby life, so occasionally I have a stage 5 nuclear meltdown and I am sorry for that.

I have also met a lot of amazing people through this blog, which is by FAR the best thing about it, INCLUDING people who have been Mean to Me on the Internet™ and with whom I have had several satisfying “truth and reconciliation” coffee dates. I am happy to do that at anytime with anyone. And I am also happy to meet any blog reader for coffee or a drink at any time. I’ve done this a lot, and it’s always wonderful.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

What is the Right Firearm to Trade for a Wedding Dress?

Asking for a friend. Or a stranger. Or maybe anyone who randomly owns a wedding dress they never wore and wants to trade it out for “the right firearm,” ‘cause that’s totes norms. 

Like is this the most Alaska buy-sell-trade ad EVER? Or is this person just kinda implying that something’s gone awry in the marriage and they wanna go Second Amendment on their spouse? 

By “more Alaskan attire” do they mean “fringe militia chic?” Like a cammo Tyvek suit, Doc Maartens, and/or a canteen held together with duct tape ala Idaho End Times? What is the “right firearm” to trade for an unworn, champagne-colored, lovely vintage lace wedding dress from Kevin’s Bridal?

I’m glad you asked, because I have a few ideas.

1. The Tommy Gun: Contrary to popular belief, this roarin’ 20s gangster gun favored by John Dillinger was not named after Tomi Lahren, but it easily fits the bill for “something old” to wear down the aisle!

2. The Colt .45: It doesn’t get more classic than this six-chamber single-action revolver. Every blushing bride should holster one on her wedding day, because you never know when you’ll need to stand your ground against a wedding crasher/drunk relative!

3. The AR-15: Sure it’s been used in every high profile mass shooting since Columbine, but a lot of people don’t know that AR stands for ArmaLite Rifle not Assault Rifle dumb libtard who cares about apostrophes and dead kids but not acronyms! Ya burnt!

4. The Beretta: Levi Johnston (‘member him?!) legit named one of his shorties after this sleek Italian firearm. You can’t get more Alaska than trading your wedding dress in for this puppy!

5. The Glock 19: According to the manufacturer’s website, the Glock 19 is “ideal for a more versatile role because of its reduced dimensions when compared to the standard sized option” and is “ideal for concealed carry or as a backup weapon.” Ideal for a backup weapon on your honeymoon, they forgot to say!


Glock 19 | G1