100 percentWell, I started this once, and then Internet Explorer just HAD to crash, and the one thing I hate about working in Blogger is that you can't conveniently save your work as you go, so... so much for about two hundred words. Fuck.
Anyway. Most people seem to be doing this Fifty Things About Me List, except for Slacker Mark Gibson, who only did 25. Well, I am vast and contain multitudes, so I'm going to do a cool hundred things about me. Except some of them won't be true. (Or, for that matter, cool.) And, you know, Internet Explorer may well crash again, so I may never get done.
But. Here we go --
1. I like dreamin. Cuz dreamin' can make you mine. Also, sometimes I have super powers.
2. I worship Gozer.
3. I know for a fact Ty Pennington is gay. Look, don’t get me wrong. I normally wouldn’t watch Extreme Makeover Home Edition with a gun to my head. But SuperGirlfriend and the SuperKids love the crap, and sometimes I get exposed to like eight seconds of it at a time as I’m running shrieking out of the room. So I’ve seen Ty Pennington, with that amazingly gay frou-frou hairstyle that looks like he just got into a slap fight with the entire cast of Queer Eye For The Straight Guy, and that precious little goatee, and the way he just prances around yipping like a goddam poodle, and I totally frickin’ know he’s gay. I mean, he’s just SO GODDAM GAY. So come on. Somebody back me up here.
4. I invented solipsism when I was about 11. Unfortunately, some fucking Greek invented it about 3,000 years before me, so he got all the credit. Prick.
5. I get paid to deal with idiots all day long. But I don’t get paid enough.
6. The idiot on the phone with me right now is really pissing me off. Swear to God, if you could hook a thermoelectric coupling to this woman’s mouth you could reenergize the Iraqi power grid. Is she finally going to shut up? Oh, no, now she’s remembered another question she had. Fuck.
7. I can’t be sure I’ve never eaten dog food. This is because I’ve eaten in SU dining halls in the mid 1980s, and I’ve eaten military MREs. You think I’m just doing the standard school and Army food dissing, but in point of fact, Syracuse University had a scandal in the mid 80s where it turned out the woman in charge of purchasing for their residential dining halls was embezzling about three quarters of her budget, and the students were getting fed crap, and her public rationale was she was educating us by letting us eat the way 2/3s of the world ate, i.e., a lot of rice, plus, I guess, a great deal of horse meat. And Meals Ready to Eat? Every word in that acronym is a filthy lie.
8. Hey, she finally shut the hell up.
9. I enjoy the song “Slit Skirts” by Pete Townsend, but I cannot agree that all the best cowboys have Chinese eyes. What about Jimmy Stewart? What about Clint? It’s madness. Madness, I say.
10. I’m as gay as I can be. Which isn’t very gay. But still, it’s the best I can do and I think that should be worth something to someone.
11. I occasionally try to fly. It never works. But I still have hopes.
12. If I’d looked out of my house and seen a bunch of frickin’ midgets dancing around yodeling about the Lollipop Guild, I’d have started shooting. Or at the very least throwing things. Heavy things. With sharp edges. I mean, you live through a goddam tornado, and your little dog lives, too, and that’s cool, and suddenly you’re besieged by hyperactive dwarves who are clearly cranked up on waaaay too much sugar? I’d have been pouring lighter fluid into empty Coke bottles and tearing old shirts up for wicks, I swear to baby Jebus.
13. When Atlas Comics, which published nothing but monster and horror stories during the 1950s, suddenly struck gold with the Fantastic Four and Spider-Man in 1963, they changed their name to Marvel Comics, but they still had all these magazine titles like Tales to Astonish and Tales of Suspense and all kinds of weird stuff like that. Most of those titles were gradually phased out over the course of the 1960s, but the rather campy sounding Journey Into Fear survived well into the 70s, and featured Man-Thing for quite a while, as well as Morbius the Living Vampire. All of which is pointless, except that one of the titles I’ve always wanted to use for a comic book, more or less inspired by Journey Into Fear, is Hurtle Into Danger! Like, you’d have in small letters at the top of the cover Hurtle Into Danger, and then, underneath, the big superhero logo, like, SOLDIER OF FORTUNE, and between the two you'd have a little 'with' off to the left side. So you'd end up with this logo that said something like Hurtle Into Danger with SOLDIER OF FORTUNE. Yeah, I know, it’s pretty retarded. You try and come up with a hundred things about yourself all at once, buddy. See what you come up with.
14. I think Star Trek is a vile and unconscionable blot on the escutcheon of all speculative fiction. I really, truly do. If I had a time machine, well, yes, my first priority would have to be the 2000 Presidential election, of course, I don’t know how I’d fix it, maybe I’d take some videotapes and some newspapers back to show to Ralph Nader and convince him to throw his support to Gore or something. But after I did that, I’d go back in time, find a young Gene Roddenberry, and kick him in the testicles over and over and over again until I had to stop because I had such a wicked charley horse in my upper thigh muscle. Not because it would prevent Star Trek from coming into existence, because it probably wouldn’t, but just because he’d deserve it.
15. “Flash of Two Earths” is one of my all time favorite comics stories, because it reveals that Barry Allen is a comics geek, and he called himself the Flash because the Golden Age Flash was his favorite comic book hero when he was a kid. And then he accidentally travels to an alternate reality where all his favorite comic book characters from his childhood are actually real! I mean, how cool is that? And yet, did anyone ever mention again in the forty years Barry Allen had his own strip that he was a comics geek, or that the members of the Justice Society had actually been published as fictional characters in the 1930s and 1940s on Earth 1, and all the other geeks on Earth 1 should therefore know their secret identities? Nooooooooo. It sucked.
16. When I first created this blog I was going to call myself “Monkey Boy”, but SuperGirlfriend absolutely balked, and wanted me to call myself “Highlander”, because the neighborhood I live in is called “the Highlands”. Ironically, I pretty much loathe the Highlander movies and TV series, although I will admit, for a long time Adrian Paul was very high up on my list of candidates for a body swap.
17. I am the luckiest man in the world, and this is an objective fact. If you’d met my girlfriend or her kids, who I am privileged to share my life with, you’d have to agree with me.
18. When fellow geeks ask me what super power I would most like to have, I generally say ‘super intelligence’, although flight tempts me, too, as does immortality. Sometimes, in more thoughtful moods, I consider the potential advantages of being able to shapeshift. And on occasion, I admit, mind control looks really good to me, too. But you know the power I’d really like to have, although it hardly ever occurs to me when I’m thinking about it? I’d like to be able to walk into books, like Gumby and Pokey used to. That would be really cool.
19. I really wish I knew all the lyrics to Bruce Springsteen’s “Thunder Road”.
20. I am a master of kung fu.
21. I am an amazingly charismatic man. At least, I am if you redefine ‘charismatic’ to mean ‘annoying’.
22. When I was a kid, my family had two dogs, named Frenchie and Ringo. I still miss Frenchie. She was a cool dog.
23. Here at work, I’m supposed to document every call, and I’m also supposed to get a daytime phone number and an email address for every participant who calls me, and I’m supposed to ask them if they’d like to take the customer service survey at the end of every call. I do this about half assed. Sometimes I actually doc a call, and sometimes I actually take down all the information. Other times I ask the participant for it but don’t bother taking it down, and occasionally I do that and don’t even doc the call. Someday it will all catch up to me. In the meantime, I figure my job is hard enough without all this mickey mouse horseshit added in, and the participants tend to get a little annoyed with me when I ask them for phone numbers and email addresses and offer them a survey, too.
24. I used to love Captain Scarlet and Speed Racer when I was a real little kid. I haven’t seen Captain Scarlet in probably close to 40 years, but when Cartoon Network first came out, I was really psyched to check out Speed Racer again. And oh sweet Christ did it suck. It was even more disappointing than how terrible Scoobie Doobie Doo was, because, you know, I really didn’t expect that much of Scoobie Doobie Doo.
25. I have no nostrils.
26. Me and this guy I used to know were once arguing about a name one or the other of us was suggesting for a character one of us had made up, and he said “that’s a really stupid name”, and I said “Well, that never stopped anyone before”, and he said “I don’t know, probably someone wanted to name a character ‘Elbowman’, and somebody else said ‘no, that’s a really stupid name’, so there’s no actual character named Elbowman.” Which is why I’ve always wanted to create a character named Elbowman. But I can’t for the life of me figure out what his powers would be.
27. One of the first CDs I ever bought was “Achtung, Baby!” by U2. I played “One” so much I actually wore the paint off the REPLAY button on my first cheapie stereo with a built in CD player.
28. I am godfather to two blogs, and both of those blogs are better than mine, and I'm very proud of the fact that I was instrumental in these blogs coming into existence. Both of these blogs belong to women I have had the good fortune to have my life entwine with, one for a short period when we were both in college, and one at present and I sincerely and desperately hope for the rest of my life.
29. I intensely dislike all organized religion. I think, in a better world, there would be no organized religion, and no political parties, either, and it would be considered to be gravely impolite to talk about religion or politics in any kind of social setting beyond the intimate, one on one conversation. Matters of god and state should be private things, things one keeps to one's self or shares, at most, with one's closest friends and family members; things for the prayer closet and the curtained off voting booth.
30. I would never in my life have the hubris to create a Hundred Best Songs Of All Time list. But if I did, there sure as shit wouldn't be any goddam Frank Sinatra anywhere on the list.
31. Star Wars isn't a terrible fantasy setting; it's nowhere near as bland, earnest, gutlessly PC, and scientifically nonsensical as the Star Trek universe, for example. The major conceptual flaw with Star Wars is that the technology apparently never changes -- the human race that lives in that galaxy far far away seems to have lost all its talent for innovation. (I'm getting this more from the Star Wars games, which are set in periods crossing thousands of years of the timeline, but in which all the technology -- hyperdrive, energy weapons, light sabres, droids, antigrav -- seems essentially the same.) It's almost as if all of these technological innovations were given to, or found as relics by, the humans there, and while they've learned how to take apart this stuff well enough to manufacture new spare parts and do basic maintenance, they simply don't understand any of the underlying principles of the machines they use all the time. So they can build copies, or repair the existing ones, but they can't create anything new. So their culture remains largely static for millenia, with governments steadily growing more and more monolithic and oppressive, then fragmenting into a period of chaos, before beginning to form again. It's a good backdrop for an unending cycle of largely unoriginal adventures Xeroxed from the old galactic adventure stories in the 40s and 50s pulp magazines, but it's hardly science fiction at all. Still, it makes more sense than transporters and holodecks.
32. I couldn't ever be a vampire. I mean it. I'd throw up.
33. It's not a crime on a level with, you know, the Gitmo concentration camp or the invasion of Iraq or shooting your hunting buddy in the face while drunk off your ass, or anything. But still. I think the way Joss Whedon simply abandoned the Buffy franchise flat, as well as all the fans that made him a success, is some kind of offense. Probably not a felony. But I'd like to see him fined for it. Heavily. Especially since the concept he shucked off the aging, perhaps somewhat saggy old wife in favor of was this completely moronic space western thing that is, hard though it is to believe, even less scientifically literate than Star Trek.
34. I once thought that if the Legion of Superheroes was going to have a Karate Kid character (somebody who was a 'master of super karate') they should also have a Kung Fu Kid character. And I was dead fucking earnest about it. But I think I was like 11 at the time. And even back then, at that early age, I felt that Karate Kid was kind of a cheat. I mean, to get into the Legion you have to have at least one unique super power, and let's face it, martial arts is not a super power. If they were going to let Karate Kid in, then they should let in, like, Robin the Boy Wonder. He didn't have any super powers either, but I was pretty sure he could kick Karate Kid's ass, especially if he had access to his utility belt during the fight. "Here, Val Armorr -- let's see you do Crane Style When Done Properly Nothing Can Defend with a face full of mace, bitch!"
35. There are some movies where all you want is for a meteor to hit the fictional Earth they are set on and kill everyone living there, because all the characters in the film are just so goddam annoying and you can't imagine there is anyone less annoying anywhere on the planet that spawned them. One of those movies is Boys Don't Cry. And The Royal Tenenbaums would be on that list, too.
36. I honestly don't mind that SuperGirlfriend and the SuperKids all like TOTAL MAKEOVER: HOME EDITION, although I wish they'd just admit Ty Pennington is gay and get over it. I mean, I can just go in the bedroom and read or play X-Box or something while they're watching it, and it doesn't bother me. But I don't think I could live with someone who really really liked Gilmore Girls, I mean, to the level of buying the DVD sets. And the day a Seinfeld boxed set shows up anywhere in a house where I am living is the day I have to start packing my bags. Or someone does, anyway.
37. I stay away from the poli-blogs done by women, right or left. Why? Well, the right wing women bloggers are all vitriolic she-trolls, for the most part... and not very bright. Folks like Michelle Malkin and Ann Coulter and that dimwitted implant queen over at Atlas Shrugged. Left wing chick bloggers are all smart as hell, but they tend to focus on women's issues with a fanatical vengeance, like, you know, abortion and sexual harrassment and stuff like that. And here's what bothers me about that -- why is it that I can call a guy I don't like a 'dick' or a 'prick' or a 'dickhead' or something like that on the Internet, and it's okay, and female bloggers do it, too, but if I were to call anyone a 'cunt' or a 'pussy', suddenly I'm being misogynistic? And why is it you can call guys 'bitch' now, and everyone laughs, but if you call a chick a 'bitch' you're a rapist or something? I suppose this is all best summed up by that really exasperating character Mary Louise Parker played on West Wing for a while. Although it would take me to too long to explain why.
38. I'm starting to think that doing a hundred of these things is going to be a pretty major chore.
39. Sometimes I find part of my mind making up its own words to songs. Often this has an unfortunate effect. Like the way I have the chorus to "The First Cut Is The Deepest" on repeat in my brain right now, only some imp of the perverse in there somewhere is insisting on substituting a vulgar word for 'vagina' in the place of 'cut'. Which is just ruining the song for me, and it's a song I like a lot. Other times, though, it's amusing. I can always make the older two SuperKids giggle by singing out loud "Who's the leader of the gang that's killing you and me? M-I-C-K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E!"
40. Like many people, I’m too fat, and I’m just not going to do anything about it. I hate being so fat, and the way all my button up shirts seem to uncomfortably strain across my huge protruding gut, but at the same time, I’m not going to diet and I’m not going to exercise, and that’s pretty much that. I would love to have a more athletic build and be able to wear smaller sizes more comfortably, and, you know, have all the chicks think I’m hot and envy SuperGirlfriend for having such a babe of a boyfriend, but I’m absolutely not going to make the slightest effort or sacrifice to achieve that goal. They need to create a miracle pill that I can take, go to sleep, and wake up with a body like Toby McGuire has at the start of Spider-Man, when he first wakes up with super powers.
41. One of my childhood ambitions was to be the guy who nobody can understand because he speaks in such big words. I read about a lot of those guys – Encyclopedia Brown, “Brains” Benton, Johnny from Doc Savage’s crew, Reed Richards – all these guys who would say something using these gigantic multisyllabic impressive sounding words, and then some dumb guy like the Thing, or Monk Mayfair, would sneer something like “Okay, now say it again in English, perfesser.” I always wanted to be that guy – the perfesser, not, you know, the dumb guy. Now, I had other childhood ambitions as well, but they were to do really impossible, insane, unattainable things like build an atomic powered rocket ship in my basement and fly it to Mars, or get super powers and fight crime, or make out with Cheri Bohadlo… somewhere… those ambitions generally didn’t come with a specific backdrop. Now, I never got to do any of that other stuff, but one Friday when I was in my late 20s, I was up at the bank on my lunch break with a bunch of my co-workers from Sunburst Optics Labs, and we were all standing around in line to cash our paychecks, and they were all bitching about work and the lousy 12 and a half cent raises that Bill and Norm passed out like candy after yearly reviews, and I said something like “Well, you have to understand that there is an essential perceptual dichotomy between ownership and labor that is for the most part insuperable”. And I paused to gather my thoughts before plunging on in to how what labor views as wages and disposable income, ownership naturally views as necessary but annoying overhead which must be kept to a minimum to maximize their own profits… and I noticed that all my co workers were staring at me with dropped jaws. After a second or so, a girl named Cindy, who was totally hot but just as dumb your grandmother’s hitching post, said, “Okay, now say it again in English, Mr. Spock” and I realized, I had become That Guy. It was one of the greatest moments of my life.
42. Sorry to tell you I’m fat, up at #40. See, I know, as you’re reading along at one of these things, it’s jarring to suddenly have someone tell you something like that. It upsets the idealized, not fully coherent subconscious image you may have somewhere in your mind of the person whose ‘voice’ you are listening to. Nobody ever imagines an unseen person as fat or otherwise unattractive; we all prefer to believe we are interacting, on whatever level, with smooth, flawless, beautiful people, like in the movies. But, well, I’m fat, and that’s just how that is.
43. Only 57 to go! Yay!
44. Everyone complains about the lousy customer service they get when they call an 800 number to bitch about their bank account, or their cable, or their phone service, or whatever. And I do it too. But you know what? At least I know what it’s like on the other end of that phone. Dealing with rude ass motherfucking bitch-punks all day long; people who think that for the duration of their phone call to customer service, the normal rules of civility are suspended, because, you know, they have a problem, and the customer service rep they are speaking to isn’t actually a human being who is just trying to get through another day doing a really shitty job like everyone else, but, rather, some subhuman drone who exists only to be slapped around over a fiber optic line.
45. I’ve never been very good at any tabletop or board game I’ve played , other than Scrabble. I was a mediocre Magic: the Gathering player, and I suspect if I played HeroClix competitively, even under my own House Rules, I’d be mediocre at it, too. I don’t seem to excel at electronic games, either. I like roleplaying games, especially ones where you sit around a table and roll dice and interact with a real human being DM, and I like to be the DM, too. But I’m wondering if such games haven’t become obsolete, given how difficult it’s been for me to find players lately.
46. I wish I was smarter. (Many of you are reading this and going “Yeah, we wish you were smarter too, dude.”)
47. Super Dependable Teen came with me and Super Adorable Kid to the park last night, and while Super Adorable Kid was running around at hypersonic speed from one piece of playground equipment to the other, Super Dependable Teen asked me if I could be any kind of animal, what would I be? I didn’t think about it, I just said “A porpoise”. Which, actually, if you have to be something other than a human being, I think that’s about the best thing to be. Assuming I can’t be some, you know, cool humanoid alien guy with telepathic powers and Klingon-level strength and a blaster. Because I’d like that better.
48. I read a book once when I was a kid; I think it was half of an Ace Double. I don’t remember much of it, but I do remember that there were these two alien races on Earth, both of them posing as humans, and they had some kind of psychic powers they were always fighting each other with. The thing I remember most vividly was one of them getting on a bus and giving the driver a nickel that had a tiny row of stars imprinted along the edge of it, which identified him as one of the alien agents. I’ve never been able to find anyone who knows anything about it. It’s probably a terrible book, but I’d love to find out for sure.
49. If you’re a guy and you watch WEST WING, you yearn mightily to identify with Sam, because he’s really smart and very good looking and all the hotties want to jump him. But if you’re me, and honest with yourself, as I try to be, eventually you just have to give it up and embrace your inner Toby Ziegler.
50. I suppose if you’re a black guy you’d yearn to identify with Charlie, actually, because he’s the only black guy on the show, and he’s pretty cool.
51. I really like the lyric “And I know that when she thinks of me, she thinks of me as ‘him’, but unlike me she don’t work off her frustrations in the gym”.
52. I also really like the Boomtown Rats’ “I Don’t Like Mondays”, which is from their album, The Fine Art of Surfacing. I remember all that from listening to the radio in the late 70s and early 80s. I never owned the album or anything.
53. I spent a summer with my buddy P.J. Peppard when we were both about 14, I think. He owned like 3 45 rpm singles. One of them was “On The Cover Of The Rolling Stone” by Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show. The B side was “Queen of the Silver Dollar”. Another one was “Seasons In The Sun” by Terry Jacks. The flip side was this truly lame ass song called “Put The Bone In”, which may have been a really vulgar double entendre, but if so I didn’t get it at the time. I can’t remember what the third single was.
54. I wonder how people would feel about a show where, say, the President and all his staff were black, or Hispanic, except for one white character. I suspect it would have a hard time finding an audience.
55. Sometimes I write idiotic doggerel, as follows:
When Captain America cleans his mighty shield
all dirt and dust and specks of rust must yield
it’s a highly polished thing
that he hurls with quite a zing
and if it hits you in the head you will be keel-ed
When Captain America hurls his mighty shield
To machine gun bullets Cap is now revealed
Though his chainmail does its best
Still they pierce his mighty chest
And now Captain America’s buried in that field
56. I also sometimes sit down and try to win some imaginary contest for writing the absolute worst line of dialogue imaginable for a comics character, or coming up with the worst possible storyline. Here’s my Worst Possible Line of Dialogue:
CYCLOPS: And now, BEAMS from my EYES will TRANSFIX you!
My Worst Possible Storyline entry: Captain America finds a hidden valley somewhere in the Far East and spends a year studying ancient oriental meditation techniques. He learns to become ‘one with his shield’ – he can now project his essence into his shield and cause the shield to fly around by itself, while he perceives what is going on around it, and can cause his body to manifest itself ‘through’ his shield in any location within arms reach of his shield. Thus, the criminal element in New York City soon learns to dread the sight of Cap’s colorful shield, hovering in the air outside their tenement windows, or lurking above them as they skulk towards a jewelry store they’re planning to rob.
57. One of the more common, and amusing, manglings of the English language I hear from Indian and Asian participants is “I am trying to fill up this claim form”. I know. It’s stupid of me. But it always makes me grin.
58. I don’t understand why some people don’t like Kevin Costner or Nicholas Cage. They don’t bother me. They’ve made some good films, and some bad ones. On the other hand, I can’t stand Sally Field. I mean it. I just can’t deal with her. Rosie O’Donnell is another one I can’t even remotely tolerate. And what’s her name, the giant black woman, Queen Latifah, there you go. Can’t watch anything with her in it. And for a long time, if a movie had Maria Conchita Alonso in it, it needed to be directed by Walter Hill and feature Nick Nolte and a lot of other cool action stars firing gigantic automatic weapons to get me into the theater. Otherwise, I just walked on by.
59. On the other hand, I will generally see anything Reese Witherspoon is in, regardless of how stupid it is. (This is one reason I’m very grateful Walk The Line did as well as it did; I’m hoping now she’ll stop making retarded high concept comedies about funny funny hicks and start making more films I can actually watch and enjoy for something besides how good Reese always looks.)
60. I wish people would stop calling me.
61. I also wish SG’s ex husband weren’t such a blithering, clueless dolt. I mean, look, I’m not that foolish. You luck into the greatest significant other on the planet and she’s got three fabulous kids, well, there’s going to be a piece of broken glass lying around on the floor somewhere, and he’s it. And he could be worse. But having said all that, he’s still such a twit. Apparently the last time he was in MY house he was sneering and giggling at some of Jeff’s original artwork on the wall. I try to be civil to him – I am, after all, balling his ex wife and parenting his kids most of the time now; I can certainly understand him being a tool to me -- but it’s good I wasn’t there for that. I only have so much slack to cut. I certainly don’t laugh at his crappy-ass little Matchbox cars when I happen to be in his house, or wrinkle up my nose and go “HoooEEEE what’s that SMELL?” at the mildew in his kitchen. Fucker. Laugh at Jeff’s artwork? Let’s see how many times his ass bounces down my front fucking stairs.
62. SuperAdorable Kid made me this really cool bookmark. And lately she’s taken to wearing a few of my old t-shirts as night shirts – I actually gave her three of them a while back, and she seems to really enjoy wearing them. Of course, she’s swimming in them, but I admit, I love to see her wearing them, too.
63. I try very very hard never to lose my temper, especially in front of the kids. So far, I’ve been surprised and gratified to find I seem to be able to pretty consistently keep my cool, even when they’re at their brattiest. I’ve been even more surprised and pleased to find that all the kids, even SuperAdorable Kid, will generally respond pretty well to me when I talk to them in a calm, reasonable tone and make courteous requests.
64. I have a very addictive personality. That’s why I don’t drink and have never messed around with drugs. I have a very strong feeling that if I ever tried pot, for example, I’d be one of those guys like my little brother, who stays stoned every waking moment of the day, and who gets extremely agitated when he’s out of weed. I don’t want that. But it would definitely be me, if I let it.
65. I’ve always been pretty much dirt poor, and I’ve never learned to handle money with any kind of discipline. I live pretty much paycheck to paycheck. I’m getting a bit better at budgeting now that there are kids in the picture, but I’m still not exactly thrifty. Lazy, worthless rabble indeed.
66. Like almost everyone else, I crave more attention than I receive. In my experience, though, there are only two kinds of people in this regard – the vast majority, who don’t get enough attention, and a tiny tiny percentage of celebrities, who get far, far more than they actually want. Virtually no one anywhere gets “Goldilocks” attention – just right.
67. I don’t know who my favorite superhero is. Maybe Hank Pym. Maybe Hal Jordan. It’s a tough call. My favorite member of the Legion of Superheroes is Chuck “Bouncing Boy” Taine, though, because first, he’s the only overweight hero in the history of comics, second, he has an amazingly cool power, and third, he’s happily married to Duo Damsel, a gorgeous babe who can, at will, turn into two identical gorgeous babes with one mind. Imagine the possibilities.
68. My favorite movie is It’s A Wonderful Life, but the only way the whole “here’s a world where George Bailey was never born” sequence can work is if we accept that God is a sadistic prick who enjoys playing head games with us mortals. I mean, come on – if George was never born, Harry Bailey wouldn’t have broken through the ice and drowned that day. For one thing, Harry Bailey would probably have been named George. Second, that was clearly George’s clique of friends Harry was sledding with that day; if George hadn’t been around, Harry would never have gone. Third, we’re presuming that nobody else there – not Burt, not Ernie, not Jackass Sam – would have the presence of mind to fish a little kid out if he fell through the ice, which seems like a stretch to me – George is the only guy in Bedford Falls who can be a hero? Leaving that aside, why the hell is Mary an old maid librarian? She’s a babe, and with or without George, we know Sam Wainwright was sniffing on her trail. She wouldn’t be an old maid, she’d be married to the richest guy in Bedford Falls… and probably she’d be miserable and doing the gardener, but still, she wouldn’t be no damn librarian, or if she was, she’d be the hot librarian every kid in Pottersville was jacking off over. And exsqueeze me, but why the fuck is there a library in Pottersville anyway? Why hasn’t that goddam book barn been rezoned for an adult use of some sort? Why isn’t Violet doing a pole dance where the frickin’ periodicals used to be back when this was Bedford Falls? And nobody better tell Nick the Bartender that in a world where George Bailey was never born, he owns the frickin’ bar. He’ll slip someone his left as a convincer. So, all I’m saying is, there’s no way this makes any sense unless we assume it’s all just a great big dope-dream God cooked up to scare George straight with. Which I wouldn’t put past him. But if God cared that much about George, why did he send him a retarded angel in the first place?
69. I like this number. Especially in context with, say, the phrase ‘the Olsen Twins’. Don’t look at me that way. I have no pretensions to decency.
70. Today was supposed to be my day off. Somebody offered to trade their day off for mine, though, and since their day off is Friday, I said ‘sure’, after mulling it over for about 3.9 picoseconds. But that means I’m here today instead of home. Nothing matters but the weekend from a Tuesday point of view. In fucking deed.
71. Why can’t they give the name ‘Darren’ to anyone cool on TV or in the movies or even in comic books? It bugs me.
72. Plus, try and find a keychain or a coffee mug or something like that with the name ‘Darren’ on it. Go ahead.
73. I think it’s needlessly sadistic to make me wait until May 23 to get Season 2 of Deadwood on DVD.
74. I have a fully functional Army surplus hand grenade.
75. I think they should have made a Star Trek movie with Harry Mudd in it.
76. I lost my mind once, but it turned up under the couch cushions. There was a quarter in there, too. Plus some gum wrappers. I threw those out.
77. I have no patience with computers. If a program or a website takes longer than a second and a half to open, I’m pissed. If it takes longer than ten seconds to open I’m ready to set fire to whatever is handy. I want to click on something with my mouse and have it work. Instantly. I think I need to buy a Pentagon surplus supercomputer, or something.
78. 100 of these fuckers is way too much, but I’m gonna stick it out, goddamit.
79. Shadow Lass has a power that really freaks me out. I mean, how do you create areas of darkness? I mean, what is she doing when she does this? Darkness isn’t a force, it’s the absence of light. Is she destroying all the light in certain areas under her control? Shunting it somewhere else? Or is she just selectively controlling the dilation of all her targets’ retinas, so they think its dark but it really isn’t? See? Freaky shit.
80. I need about t’ree fitty.
81. Ever hauled off and belted a tree with a baseball bat? I have. I walked out of this kid’s house one time when I was pretty young and right there on the grassy verge by the curb, there was this aluminum softball bat lying right next to a big elm tree. Seized by an utterly inexplicable but irresistible urge, I snatched that puppy up and let fly. KRUNGGG! Felt like someone set off a bomb in both of my palms. Oddly, I’ve asked other people about this over the years, and discovered that it seems to be a nearly universal experience, at least among guys – at some time in our childhood, we’ve all seen a baseball bat lying next to a tree, or a phone pole, or something, and been overwhelmed by that same idiotic impulse. I’ll tell you what, though – no matter how foolish you may be, if you do it once, you will NEVER do it again. It’s the kind of experience that even Tom Cullen could learn from.
82. I am by nature deeply uneasy when surrounded by large groups of strangers, and for that reason, and others, I don’t attend concerts much. In my life, I doubt I’ve seen a dozen. The first one I ever saw was in the summer of 1979, when Mike Mahiques and I went to see the Eagles on their Hotel California tour, at the Buffalo War Memorial. Later that summer, he and I and a couple of girls – I took Ellen Stamper, I can’t remember who he took – went to see Triumph, in a smaller venue in Buffalo. In college, I saw a few shows – Carolyn Mas did a free concert on the quad which I enjoyed so much I bought her album, but I haven’t listened to it in a very long time. I saw the Kinks with my ex girlfriend Laurie in, I think, 1981 or 1982 – the show was opened by some not particularly good singer-guitarist we’d never heard of, didn’t like at all, and that we both agreed wouldn’t have much of a career; his name was Bryan Adams, so don’t buy any stocks either of us recommend, either. I also saw Blue Oyster Cult once in the Syracuse War Memorial with Jeff Webb, Ann Huntington, and Rob Morrison, and several more times in a little biker bar called the Lost Horizon with Jeff. And Jeff and I went to see Adam and the Ants at the Landmark Theater (we got free tickets from some guy on University Union Concert Board), and later we saw Styx Hotel Paradise tour at the Carrier Dome, and much later than that, I saw Pat Benatar at the Landmark, too. (Jeff and I also saw a live performance of the Rocky Horror Show at the Landmark somewhere in there, but I’m not sure that counts as a concert.) Much later, my mom and my girlfriend at the time Kristy and I saw Don Henley in Florida, and I took Kristy to see Billy Joel at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse for Valentine’s Day one year. And I think that’s all the concerts I’ve seen, although my brother Paul, cock-mongrel that he is, went and saw Counting Crows while I was staying with him, but I had to work that night.
83. For a very long time, I thought the Natalie Imbruglia song “Torn” was actually about some guy named Tor.
84. My favorite fantasy novel is still Lord of Light by Roger Zelazney. My favorite SF novel is… harder to quantify, but still most likely something by Heinlein, or maybe Startide Rising by David Brin. My favorite work of fiction is still most likely Very Far Away From Anywhere Else by Ursula K. LeGuin, although it could also be Blood Games by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro. My favorite comic – is probably still something by Steve Englehart… one of his Avengers issues, or maybe a Detective… but I suppose it could also be an issue of Sandman by Neil Gaiman. Or maybe even something by Moore… maybe one of the Top Ten issues. Although there could be some Carey Bates Superman or Superboy and the Legion of Superheroes stories in there, too.
85. I could never be elected to any kind of office. But I’d run a fun campaign.
86. SuperGirlfriend and I are a truly formidable team at Scene-It.
87. I have no favorite flower.
88. I intensely dislike lying. But I can do it really really well if I feel the need.
89. I stole a chair once. But I don’t have it any more.
90. Long hair is a fairly large hassle. I keep my hair long, though, because I like the way it looks on me, and so does Supergirlfriend, and it irritates a great many people whom I feel badly need to be irritated.
91. I honestly believe gas prices are too low in America, and have been for decades. Only when gas prices are so high people simply can’t afford to fill up will the American electorate, vastly fat and hugely lazy and enormously spoiled as we are, make any effort to take the needle/nozzle out of our arms/gas tanks and demand our government look seriously at alternative energy sources. On the other hand, I’m part of a household that spends a significant amount of our paychecks filling up the car, so I feel the pain of our not-at-all-high-compared-to-the-rest-of-the-world per gallon prices very deeply, and can’t help but feel relief when gas prices tip down again. But it’s the relief of a five year old at learning that yes, there actually was another half gallon of ice cream in the fridge, and he won’t have to go without a scoop on his pie tonight after all. It’s unenlightened and short sighted and foolish. We need to find another source of energy, and we needed to start looking for it probably back in the 1950s. We’re in an enormous shitload of trouble, and I can’t help but think it’s going to get much much worse before it gets better. And it may not get better any time soon, as in, in my lifetime.
92. I’m a big believer in honesty… but not as much as I used to be. Truth is important, but so are people’s feelings, and sometimes you have to put on a show to get along. I dislike that, but it’s just the way things are. Still, I will always prefer, and when I can, choose, to hang out with people I can be for the most part truthful with. And it’s one reason I never get tired of hanging out with SuperGirlfriend – I can always be honest with her.
93. I have had four girlfriends in my life. The two that I am fondest of are both much smarter than I am, although SuperGirlfriend doesn’t think she is, and she’s just plain dead wrong about that, too. I’ve heard that most guys don’t like smart women, especially women who are smarter than they are, but I’ve always found them to be amazingly sexy.
94. Casual sex doesn’t work well for me. I’ve had a few relationships that were pretty much just sex and nothing else, and I get bored with them and break them off pretty quickly. After being celibate for a while I usually regret it and call myself an idiot for doing it, but still, if I don’t have some emotional intimacy, sex generally seems kind of pointless. Not that it matters, since I’m unlikely to ever be celibate, or involved in a casual sexual relationship, again in my life. Which is a very pleasant feeling.
95. I consider myself to be a non-conformist, just like all the rest of you.
96. A guy named Jake Marek and I once made up a fictional political candidate for Student President in high school, because it offended us that Burt Farrant was running for the office unopposed. We made posters in art class for “Worthington Carbuncle” and put them up all over school. And he won. Our social studies teacher tried to make us be Co-Presidents, but saner heads prevailed and Burt got the job anyway. But he ran unopposed and lost… to a fictional candidate. That had to hurt.
97. So Super Drama Teen was telling me David Boreanaz was going to be on Ellen next week, and I said "So? It's not like he's going to be making out with her or anything", and Super Dependable Teen said "He's married!" and I said "Yeah, he's married to Seth Green" and they were like "nooooooooo" and Super Drama Teen said "Dude, he's got a kid" and I said "Yeah, that kid is actually the monkey from Friends." And they all felt that was ridiculous. But I don't know. Has anyone seen the monkey from Friends lately?
98. I look over and Super Adorable Kid is lying upside down halfway off the couch, and her socks are on the floor. So I say "Can you please pick them up and put them in the dirty laundry?" And she shakes her head no. So I say "Super Adorable Kid, I'm asking to be polite, but what's actually happening here is, I'm telling you, pick up your socks and put them in the dirty laundry." Which she did. Which is good, because next up was the Cool Hand Luke speech. And nobody wants that.
99. I was going to put something in here about cans of biscuit dough, but SuperGirlfriend pouted at me, so I'm not allowed to.
100. I really like bread. And rolls. And biscuits. My family learned very quickly when I was a kid that at big holiday meals, you do not park me next to the rolls. If you do, two minutes later you have a carb-bloated little kid and an empty bread basket.