Alright dogs, Christmas is taken care of. Snap! Actually, it's not entirely taken care of, because a few of the things I ordered online haven't come in yet. Negative 1/4 snap! However, these items are coming from a long way away and are also great, so you may multiply that negative 1/4 snap by -1. I believe that puts me at 1.25 snaps, which is an acceptable amount for Christmas. Snap!
The good news here is that I only have to work tomorrow, and then I'm off until January 3rd. What am I going to do with all of that time off? For part of it, I'm going to Illinois to see Laura's relatives. I'm not exactly sure what her relatives would have to be like in order to take my own family look good in comparison, but the following elements would apply: polygamy + moonshine + sells counterfeit Elmo dolls on Ebay. (Note: this does not apply to any family members reading this entry... I'm talking about the other ones, of course.)
I am going into this Christmas season with a slightly heavy heart, because I never got a chance to watch a forgotten seasonal classic. For the past month or so, whenever someone would ask me about Christmas movies, I'd say that the one I really wanted to watch again was Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas. The other people would typically retort, "What the hell are you talking about?" And then I'd tell them how it was the story of a young otter who learns the spirit of Christmas when his jug band enters a battle of the bands. Come on people, that's fairly obvious from the title.
When I was growing up, I loved that show. I haven't seen it in many years, though; this year, I decided I would break my Emmet Otter drought. I resolved to do this, and I said so many times, probably stirring up a little Otter mania along the way. However, I had a hard time finding it. It wasn't on Netflix, I couldn't find anyone with a copy, and it wasn't on tv. (Of course, looking now, I see I could've purchased it from Amazon for $10; keep in mind that I'm not very intelligent.) Anyway, the end result is that I haven't watched one damn minute of Jug Band Christmas, after talking it up so much to so many people and convincing these people that this movie actually exists. I'm a strange guy and all, but it's not like I could hallucinate a whole Jug Band Christmas movie.
Anyway, there's my Christmas dilemma: I have the gifts, but I don't have the Otter.
I'm halfway done with my Christmas shopping. It's at this point, when I've exhausted all of my good ideas, that I'm ready to create an altar to George Costanza and the Human Fund.
I actually did come up with one good idea that I could spread around for all of my gifts: a disaster preparation kit. People I don't know very well/don't like very much would get bottled water, some bleach, and diarrhea medicine. Those closest to me get shotguns, gold, and geiger counters. I don't know what folks in the middle would get, maybe a gas mask.
Regardless of what these people receive and where they live, I'll also attach a note that says, "When the crap goes down, meet at my house the next morning at 6 AM. Watch out for marauders!" If we could get the whole group there, we could probably start our own civilization. At the very least, we could have a heck of a party.
Another good idea would be to distribute clues to some sort of enormous scavenger hunt. The problem is, if one person doesn't play along, the entire scheme falls apart. Imagine that everybody has the whole thing figured out except for the last clue, and then my great uncle categorically refuses to tell anyone where the onyx Buddha statue is. (Not sure if the Buddha statue is the prize or the clue in this scenario.) This would definitely happen if my relatives were involved, and maybe that's not such a bad thing. At the very least, people would be so pissed they'd never want to open my gifts again, which pretty much absolves me of any gift giving for the rest of eternity. The scavenger hunt begins!
Woooooohooooooo, I'm done with school! Wooooooohooooooo, I got a Wii! Wooooooohooooooo, my mom got me a machete for Christmas!
1. I finished with my class this semester, all praise be to Huckleberry Hound. Since the grades aren't in just yet, I'll just say this: Wow, was that ever an unpleasant way to spend my leisure time. I am, however, 1/8 of the way closer to my master's degree. 1/8 of the way?! Where's that spam I got about a doctorate for $14?
2. One of my dad's work associates bought a Wii and a PS3 without telling his wife. When she found out, she chased him around the kitchen with a rolling pin for a few hours, until he agreed to sell both. My dad took the PS3, and I took the Wii. I got it hooked up during my lunch hour and promptly bowled a 202 in Wii Sports. That's Wiidiculous!
3. Laura and I have already opened a couple of presents that were intended for both of us. At this moment, we've received no less than 3 sets of knives. Either people are tired of cutting their steak with butter knives at our house, or they're looking to spice up our relationship a little bit. I actually don't know if you can call my mom's present a set of knives, as with a few of those things, I could adequately lead a South American guerilla army.
In other news, I still need to buy a lot of presents for Christmas, my cat is getting fatter, and our applications are in for the World Series of Pop Culture. If mine doesn't compel VH1 to give me and Flava Flav our own show where we run an apple orchard, then I just don't know about the decision making process at that network.
Is Santa Claus a superhero? Consider the following.
Okay, we all agree on this; it just makes sense.
If we do agree, shouldn't we respect Santa a little bit more? I wouldn't just get up in Batman's face and demand toys, but we force our kids to do this every year. If Batman showed up to your house specifically to bring you things, you'd never go to sleep and leave out a tray of Keebler Elf cookies and spoiled milk. No, you'd be researching beef wellington recipes and stocking up on vermouth. If Batman wants an appletini, he gets an appletini!
By the standards of our society, Santa Claus is a superhero and he deserves to be lauded as such. Christmas morning, if you find an enormous heap of reindeer crap on your roof, do not shake your fist at the North Pole. Instead, smile broadly and scream, "Thank you for using your powers for good, Santa, and also for not killing me!"
Boy, Saturday night was terrible. We went to Artz Rib House, and I came down with a hellacious case of something. I don't know what the something was, but it's definitely a type of illness. If I have any doctors in the crowd, could they match the following symptoms up to a disease?
1. Throwing up black stuff.
2. Constantly on the verge of soiling one's self.
Yeah, you didn't want to read that, but I really wanted to write that. In fact, I really want to elaborate with thousands of words, so that you, the reader, could grasp the despair of that night. I want to create a PowerPoint where I break each symptom into bullets that woosh on the screen with interesting sound effects. What about Visio? Yes, I could flowcharty it. Fortunately for us all, I will refrain. Just know this: it was bad, I'm better now, and I mostly blame Artz.
The weekend was also bad because I had to do a lot of work for some meetings we're having this week at the office. Working on the weekend is not so bad; it's quiet, I could probably run through the halls in my underwear, and because of those two factors, I get a lot done. The whole time though, I was mentally projecting myself into the meetings.
Imagining myself in a meeting is usually way worse than actually being in the meeting. When I'm in the actual meeting, we have donuts and an agenda, so it's usually not so bad. However, when I start imagining, I see the head honcho saying stuff like, "And now we'll quiz each other on the state capitals of the Northeast, with a salary deducion for each incorrect answer." Everyone in the meeting is really good except for me, and I keep guessing the capital of Maine is Maine City. Eventually, so much is deducted from my salary that I become an indentured servant. My imaginings are exactly like this, just ported a little bit closer to the subject matter of the meeting.
Unfortunately, I have another day's worth of meetings tomorrow. Even more unfortunately, we have yet to discuss even one state capital, meaning there's a lot of subject matter stored up. Fortunately, I have gone 36 hours without symptom #2, so it won't be as humiliating as it could be.
Is it any coincidence that yesterday, I posted my entry on my upcoming victory in the World Series of Pop Culture, and today, I cannot access the site for the tv show? Clearly a cabal has formed against me, and even more clearly, this cabal has an in with the people who run VH1's website. You know what I do to cabals? I kebob them. (That's not quite a pun, but no one cares.)
Every year, I mark the arrival of Christmas by the delivery of my Christmas pork. My employer gives all of the employees this pork loin each year towards the beginning of December. I love it because I love pork; a militant kosher person would probably interpret it differently.
In such a situation, I think a kosher person should enter into an agreement with a Hindu person: any pork gifts to the kosher guy is passed along to the Hindu guy, while the Hindu guy would give back to the kosher guy any beef gifts he receives. Is this really so hard to figure out? Observant Jews and Hindus, you need to communicate!
Religion aside, I like the loin idea. Around the holidays, I tend to go a little crazy with the gift shopping. The last thing I need is a gift card, which would force me to spend more time in stores. It's better I get meat. Maybe it'll sedate the holiday rage. At the very least, it'll fatten me up, which means I won't be able to attack the poor sales clerks with my usual agility.
Bad news, pop culture nerds: I have been recruited to enter the World Series of Pop Culture. Yes, I said recruited, and by someone with a PhD, no less. I guess that makes me an honorary PhD myself, except that instead of producing a dissertation, I know a lot about Corey Feldman. Let's not split hairs here.
I haven't actually seen this tv show, so one might think it's too early for me to declare victory. Well, one would be wrong in this case. I don't care about the format of the show, the content of the questions, or the level of competition; when it comes to ridiculous contests, nobody beats me. I am Nelson Mandela's bizarro brother: while he triumped over great adversity, I choose to triumph only the trivial and stupid. In case you're not buying my bizarro relationship with Nelson Mandela, I should point out that we also live in opposite hemispheres, and he is black while I am white. (Can anyone confirm my sneaking suspicion that he loves the smell of maple syrup?)
The WSOPC isn't an individual competition. Instead, teams match up against one another. I don't know if our team has a name yet, but I came up with a few there were appropriate for the contest:
The One Eyed Willies
BersUrkel (must be said to be appreciated)
and most disturbingly, Mr. T Bag
Like I said, I'm not sure what's involved in this game yet, but I intend to find out. And once I do, I intend to lead Mr. T Bag to victory. Failing that, I expect to at least be provided with a bag of Skittles, compliments of VH1. If you wish to help through informal pop quizzes/tutoring, I invite you to abuse the comments section below. On to victory!
I don't know how to phrase this, so I'll just let it out here: another man has moved into my house. Laura has challenged my status as 78759's loverman numero uno, and told me that in order to satisfy her, I must work in shifts with this dude. She declined to elaborate, telling me that my new roommate had a film strip that'd explain everything. Worse, the guy doesn't even pay rent. I asked Laura about it and she winked, then made a vulgar hand gesture at me. I fear for my relationship, my home, and my faberge egg collection.
Ha ha ha, that's hardly the case. We do have an addition to our household, but it's no oily bohunk; it's my collegiate pal Dean Zyvarb. He landed a sweet, new job in Austin, but his wife and home are in Houston. Until they get settled here, he's bunking at Camp Powell. Does this make him a transient? I'm pretty sure it does. Don't be cooking up any hobo stew in that bedroom, Dean!
I think the new set-up will be pretty fun. First, he's a good friend with a well-established track record of having a large time. Second, he makes excellent lasagna. Third, I've been looking to create a neighborhood rumor about us. "The people down the street are swingers" is pretty tough to top.