Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Mr. Slug

So I'm sitting in the library wearing a pink wig and a hat from the 1920s. The thing is, wearing a ridiculous costume on an ordinary Wednesday is not the weirdest situation to find myself in in the last 24 hours.

Last week I read a newspaper article about Neil Hamburger coming to town. He is supposedly "America's Funnyman." So not knowing Mr. Hamburger's body of work, what he does or if he is even funny, I decided to check the show out last night.

The website said doors open at nine. And being the square that I am I imagined that meant the show would start shortly thereafter, 9:30 at the latest.

Danny and I showed up to an almost empty Common Grounds, grabbed a table towards the back and waited. When 9:45 rolled around I figured the show really started at 10 and that I was a huge dork. At 10:15 the place started filling up, people were rubbing elbows with us and using the ashtray stationed at the end of our table, but still no show.

At this point I was yawning and seriously contemplating leaving before the show even started. At 10:30, I tell Danny I am leaving. Let's give it 15 more minutes, he says. We dragged ourselves all the way out for this.

Fine. At 10:43, the show starts. The opening for Neil Hamburger is The Tom Miller Show. He's something of a local celebrity. A performance artist. He runs on stage in a yellow blazer and goes right into an acapella rap about blow jobs which is totally worth the wait if only to see a 40-something man in a cheesy blazer rap about blow jobs.

He reads a few poems (dicks, vaginas, more blow jobs)and sing a song whose chorus I can't get out of my head no matter how hard I try....666, the number of the beast, fuck me with a nun, fuck me with a priest (It's quite good really).

The best part of the show is a suspender clad drunk man who paces in front of the stage raising his arms in admiration for Tom Miller. Trying to encourage the audience to cheer by repeatedly lifting his extra tall can of Michelob Light.

Then, just as I am wondering how long this opening act is, Tom Miller introduces "Mr. Slug."

Mr. Slug is a large man wearing a mask, pink headdress and a white graduation gown. He speaks reverberated gibberish into the microphone before stripping to nothing but a cloth diaper and masturbating on stage.

Yeah. We ended up leaving after the opening act since it was already well past our bedtime and the main event hadn't even started. I'll just look Neil Hamburger up on you tube to see what I missed.

But as I sit here in the library sporting hair you'd only see on Halloween or in a strip club, I keep thinking about Mr. Slug. My friend Alisa, who I meet here once a week to write, had the idea to dress up, as an experiment really.

How would people react to a costume in a mundane setting on a not-so-special Wednesday? I've actually been surprised at the response I'm NOT getting. People go out of their way to act as though there is nothing out of the ordinary about the woman with pink hair and a green hat that just walked in or is sitting next to them at the stop light.

I can feel them all NOT looking.

Are we so inundated with Mr. Slugs that we don't even notice strange anymore? I guess in a town where a man can wear a diaper and stroke his pole on stage, my behavior is not as outlandish as I previously thought. I may not even be as lame as I thought.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Kiddo Collection

I think the dog may finally be starting to grow out of her puppyhood. At least the chewing portion of it. It has been at least 14 days since she has mangled something beyond recognition.

Once in awhile I’ll come home to see a lone flip flop has been dragged out to the middle of the floor, but is untouched. It’s as if she’s nostalgic for those shoe chewing days and just wanted to reminisce.

Surviving the destructive puppy phase led me to an idea. I am going to launch a line of clothing and furniture specifically for puppy owners. This new line will fashionably mimic items that have been “redesigned” by our canine companions. With my new collection, there will be no need to be embarrassed by the chewed up rug or the bite out of your favorite jacket. Any additions Fido makes will simply enhance the look. It’s brilliant (and frankly necessary).

I’ll call it the I-give-up-I’m-just-going-to-live-with-this-safety-pinned-couch-cushion Collection.

Here is a 2008 catalog preview.


Women’s Jeans:

















Men’s Shoes :















Women’s Shoes:



















Lingerie:
















Furniture:















Home and bath (600 thread count sheets):


















Watches:
Ultimately I would like to expand the collection and market to parents of young children. Spit-up splotched sweaters (available in spring pea green, summer squash yellow or mushroom soup). Sticky jam car seat. Crayon creation wall paper. The possibilities are endless.

I suppose another solution would be to just adopt animals/children when they are a bit older and no longer throw up on and mangle things. Although I guess with children that stage never really ends since I have a few fuzzy memories of my mom mopping up vodka infused puke well into my high school years. And also when I was sixteen I wrote "I love John Kruswicki" in blue ink all over my mattress which made it a hard sell ten years later at my parent’s garage sale…anyway, that could be another off-shoot collection called “We can’t have anything nice with you kids!”




Possible catalog cover: "Yes, I am heart breakingly cute....

...But I will fuck your shit up."

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

A Father's Day Gift

Twenty Things I learned from my dad...

1. How to tell a story that makes people laugh.
2. How to drink a shot properly.
3. How to catch, throw and hit a softball.
4. How to play tennis.
5. That the world is bigger than Canton, OH.
6. Not to take everything so seriously.
7. How to cope with things without whining.
8. That you should think about what you love to do, and then find a way to get paid for it. (Barring anything illegal of course.)
9. Why one should not order veal. (Do you know what they do to those cows?)
10. That all your actions have consequences. For instance, if you and your pre-teen friends leave a huge mess in the Crete Do-Nut Shop, you are going to have to march in and apologize to the owner’s face.
11. An appreciation for old movies.
12. How the stock market works.
13. How to plant something and make it grow. (I got a D- in that but I’m still counting it).
14. That bratwurst is best cooked with beer.
15. An appreciation for the natural beauty of the world around us.
16. How to paint a room.
17. How to brush a cat.
18. How to doggie paddle so I won’t drown.
19. How to ride a bike.
20. And most importantly, that genes don’t make a parent, love does.




P.S. (I'm hoping my dad finds this picture amusing, because I do. It makes me think of a caricature-stlye stock photo of a man angry that his tee time got moved from 9:30 to 9:45...dad, I think you could have a future in stock photo modeling.)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

A Guide to Hiring Women

This 1943 Guide to Hiring Women was sent to me by my lovely sister-in-law Irene. She’s amazing. I honestly don’t know how she does it, great career, great kid, fabulous hair. I imagine the trick is to not require sleep (or have copious amounts of crack on hand at all times).

In this guide, the good ol’ boys at Western Properties (WP) have done us the service of listing out helpful tips on how to get more efficiency out of female workers.

I sat down for a little chat with WP to discuss some of their tips.


WP: Pick young married women. They have more sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters yet still have the pep and interest to work hard.

SS: Let me tell you WP, they still have this "pep and interest" because their soul has not yet been eroded by years of marriage, toddlers, teenagers, pee stains on the carpet, and cliché arguments about why the toilet seat should be down.


WP: If you must pick older women, pick women who have worked outside the home at some point. Older women who have never contacted the public have a hard time adapting and tend to be cantankerous and fussy.

SS: Listen, these “older” women are probably cantankerous and fussy from years of raising your cantankerous and fussy children, and dealing with your cantankerous and fussy ass who pops in from a real estate job at the end of the day and expects a pot roast and martini waiting on the table. And by the way, you’re not fooling anybody, we know that “real estate” means driving around who knows where and eating at greasy diners with your greasy friends.


WP: General experience indicates that, “Husky” girls are more even tempered than their underweight sisters.

SS: So...you're saying the fat acts as some sort of anger filter or shock absorber? Speaking as a husky gal, I can throw a temper tantrum that ranks up there with the best of them (and I got some weight behind it brother…watch out, I will time clock your skinny ass.)


WP: Retain a physician to give each woman a special examination, one covering female conditions. This reveals whether the employee-to-be has any female weaknesses which would make her physically or mentally unfit for the job.

SS: Just say it man, you’re talking about my VAGINA. Just say that you want to make sure that my vagina won’t make me tumble from my desk in the middle of the day. Or that my vagina won’t drink all your fancy-ass gin. Or that my womanly chasm won’t open up and swallow the entire universe with you in it. Watch out behind you! It's a vagina! HA HA! It's cool WP I'm just playing with you.



WP: Give the female employee a definite day long schedule of duties so that they’ll keep busy without bothering the management for instructions every few minutes.

SS: I've got news for you WP, the men in your office are not asking you for instructions every few minutes because they are ALL playing World of Warcraft or drafting their picks for fantasy baseball.


WP: Give every girl an adequate number of rest periods during the day. You have to make some allowances for female psychology. A girl has more confidence and is more efficient if she can keep her hair tidied, apply fresh lipstick, and wash her hands several times a day.

SS: Oh, WP, you’re so cute. You think they're slipping off to the powder room to primp. Actually it’s because you keep hanging out at their desks all day with your stifling Aqua Velva and creepy grin. Those women slink off to the ladies room because they're tired of hearing how many times your fraternity won the rugby tournament in college and how many pounds you can bench press.


WP: Be reasonably considerate about using strong language around women. Even though a girl’s husband or father may swear vociferously, she’ll grow to dislike a place of business where she hears too much of this.

SS: Actually, I just used your ladies room. It is a regular bar brawl in there. I think I just got a tattoo of a train on my ass.