9.29.2008

The CNN article starring ME cause I'm famous

So, a few folks have posted and talked about a new article on CNN that I contributed to about debt vs. spending habits.

So, first, let me say in response to a commenter from yesterday that, no, I didn't start a non-existent newsletter to milk fans out of cash to pay debts (MIM). I started a non-existent newsletter because I was stupid enough to believe I had what it took to make it exist, and found out quickly that I didn't - after racking up even MORE debt trying to make it work. I offered all subscribers their remaining subscription payment back (minus 2 issues, which shipped), or a FULL-PRICE subscription credit in the Mentally Incontinent shop for hats, shirts, or books. Most took the credit. I believe everyone was accounted for, but if you weren't, I cordially invite you to email me so I can make things right with you, since you're very obviously upset about it.

There. That's been said. Now, on to the article.

I was interviewed by the author, Sarah Jio, who is very cool. I like her, she's bright and smart and thorough.

She had to edit down my responses for space.

I mention this because I feel, after reading this article, that some stuff I explained, which felt extraneous at the time, suddenly becomes relevant. So I want to explain my position in this article. And for the record, I approved her edits (Jesus, could I use more commas?)

There was a lot of paraphrasing. Yes, there was a little over 70k in debt, but some of it was student loans for Andrea's degree, some of it was a wedding that it was way to late to postpone / cancel when the .com crash happened, and the rest was credit cards. So it wasn't like I went and bought seventy thousand dollars worth of PS2 games. I don't even think it's possible to do that.

That said, I WAS terribly irresponsible with my money back then. From 1996 until 2001, I was a teen becoming an adult making more money in the .com arena than my parents' made in 20 years. I had no house payments and no overhead - my travel was paid for by the companies I worked for, and I paid exactly $350 a month in rent in a shared house with Mike. I had what I considered my retirement stored up in a tech-heavy stock portfolio. I owned stock options in no fewer than 4 start-ups who threatened to change the industry (they didn't, they just gobbled cash and shat promises like everyone else back then).

I thought I was set, so I never realized I should have been investing my cash into assets that weren't made obsolete with the advent of pixel shading.

When the first .com crunch hit, things went pear-shaped pretty much immediately. I took a MASSIVE cut in pay (and I was LUCKY AS HELL to even have pay. I had friends who had to work at Staples and Home Depot after managing software teams for damn near $200,000 a year. I had two friends with families who weren't even that lucky, and had to support their families by double and triple-mortgaging their homes for a year or more... SO yeah, I was lucky, but stupid). For some reason, I couldn't stop spending.

At first, I thought it was just a temporary lull... Then, I felt like whatever I was acquiring now, I could pay off later when the slump was over. But there was no lull... This was life, and I was adapting to it very poorly. I had massive problems adjusting to the fact that, hey, I just might have to wait two years to upgrade my computer. I might - horror of horrors - have to do without a new video game release. Sounds pathetic, I know... Because it is.

Not in my defense, but just to shine some light on it, I grew up with a single mother raising three kids on one income. When my mom married my dad ( I was 10), things were decent for a bit, but then bad times hit my dad's company, and again my sister and I had nothing (the third kid was gone off to make trouble on his own, good riddance). We worked after school to buy food and entire summers just to get clothes that fit.

My friends, we were what you call "poor." And please, spare me with the whole "You had food, you don't know what poor is, there are children in developing countries who yadda blah blah go fuck yourself, you privileged fuck" bullshit. I grew up in America. We had food because my sister and I worked after school and sports practices to be able to afford it. So no, we weren't impoverished and living in grass huts, because we live HERE. That being said, we were poor by the standards of this nation. Eat me.

Anyway.

When I went to college (and also was working at Wal-Mart, for the historians among you), my scholarship dropped almost immediately because they disbanded the wrestling team at Georgia State to make room in the school budget for more basketball stuff. Apparently, my first (and only) year of college, the Panthers made it to the sizzling 64 or whatever and they made money on it, so they made it the priority over all other programs - leaving a lot of us in the cold. Meanwhile, there were companies paying living wages to write web code. So I gave that a try, and quickly realized that college was a joke - I was out in the marketplace learning while being paid a massive salary for doing essentially what I'd be doing at home if I weren't working.

It totally ruled.

I traveled the country, and eventually the world. I was driving a nice car, going out to nice dinners, and treating my friends to a lifestyle they couldn't afford on their own simply because I wanted them to experience what I was experiencing - the joys of being young and affording the insanity that youth inspires.

Andrea and I bought a house in 2001 - probably more than we could reasonably afford at the time, but what is now an INCREDIBLE value - and 6 months later, three airplanes flew into buildings and the nation was shaken awake. The startup I was working at folded immediately (it was funded by GE Financial, who called on assets and shut the place down). All of the consulting agencies I'd worked for in the past dried up and blew away.

I was without contacts, without resources and, for the first time in my career, completely at a loss for what to do next.

So, I found a lovely medical software company, camped out for a few years, and worked my ASS off for one of the best managers / mentors I've ever had. Meanwhile, the wedding we could have easily afforded before the crash became an extravagant affair that it was FAR too late to call off. The cars were in their 3rd year of the loan, and would have sunk well below the value line to sell off. Andrea was graduating college, and the student loans were calling.

In short, the vise of reality began squeezing around my neck.

It was around the end of 2002 that I knocked off the nonsense and actually became responsible. The stupid purchases stopped. Eating out stopped. I began drawing up user interface concepts on my own time. I wrote on MI. I began freelancing for magazines. And near the end of 2003, some of my old friends in the business started new business, and I was able to moonlight at a decent hourly wage. I was able to stem the bleeding of our debt-to-income ratio with the moonlighting and writing and freelance designing, and actually began paying down the debts.

So, with things going well, I tried putting out the Mentally Incontinent Monthly thing to earn a bit of extra cash. Didn't work - not only couldn't I deliver, but it actually cost me every single dime I received in 6 and 12 month subscriptions just to put out TWO ISSUES. So I had to credit everyone back. That hurt.

Add a little bit of debt piled on. No biggie, but my wife wasn't happy.

I then tried to put out shirts and hats. They sold out - but again, after shipping, I only barely broke even. Lots of work that could have been spent consulting or writing articles. Oops. But hey, I tried...

And then, I got the bright idea to put out a book on my own, with no publisher. My wife was VERY skeptical about the finances, but she supports me above all else - so we mortgaged the house and I paid for the printing and shipping. Lo and behold, it actually paid off. We were able to not only cover the costs of doing this, we actually made some money, which went right into savings. We paid down our credit debts slowly with that money, not wanting to blow our nest egg.

I quit my job at the medical software company at the end of 2005, due to the book sales. I focused exclusively on writing. I worked my ass off. Things were going fine - our debt was about half of what it was at its peak; sitting at about 35,000 bucks and slowly decreasing. Between the book and Andrea's sneaky way of saving money without telling me, we would have been able to pay that almost all the way down, becoming immediately solvent.

And then mid-2006, I got the bright idea to try the FarkTV show on Turner's abortion of a "network" called SuperDeluxe. My wife saw that I was able to make the book work, and so she threw her support 100% behind the show concept and execution. We re-mortgaged the house to pay for everything up front, with the expectation that Turner would pay back, and we might be able to make it a success.

It wasn't.

At least, for me it wasn't. It went on to do whatever good things it did after I left - I didn't keep track or pay attention (and there's no hard feelings there, I left due to creative differences, but when I did, I also took on my debts as the show's producer at the time so they'd have a clean slate. It should be noted that everyone parted on good terms, and that FarkTV is not the same business entity as Fark.com. I mention this because I still work for Fark.com and the two should not be confused). I couldn't even think about the show without getting sick to my stomach from the business failure I'd just put my trusting wife through. Our savings was gone. Turner does NOT pay on time. I overspent the budget.

In short, I put us almost where we were in the beginning - wildly in debt with nothing to show for it but stupid decisions and the mistakes of an overconfident one-trick-pony who thought menial success with a book entitled him to instant success on everything else. I was an idiot.

So, I went to work. Hard.

I worked about 70 hours a week, every week, for nearly a year and a half from January 2007 until pretty much last week. I bought NOTHING except what it took to remodel our house, which was not only necessary, but the only investment worth making at the time (of course, with this past week and a half of housing meltdowns... Probably not a great call).

In June of 2008, we wrote our last check to our last creditor. Andrea's student loans were gone. The FarkTV debt was gone. Our credit cards were cut up, the 2nd mortgage was paid, and we were completely solvent for the first time in our lives. And all it cost me was an audience, who I couldn't satisfy with regular updates due to my working all the time.

So when Sarah asked if I would like to contribute to her article on overzealous spending and lessons learned, I felt that it was time to finally tell this story. I only regret that space wouldn't allow me to tell that entire story... But the article isn't about ME, it's about the topic of overzealous spending, of which I am merely one example. A good one, though, I guess.

But now you know what's been going on and why I've been gone. And hopefully you understand the amount of grit and determination I was trying to show from January until April of this year with regular weekly updates, and why that ultimately folded on itself. And hopefully you understand why I feel like I blew the only great thing I had going - my audience (you) - on stupid mistakes which forced me to work my ass off non-stop, and how I would give ANYTHING to keep you guys and have never had the debt in the first place.

And hopefully, all of this teaches you one thing:

Freedom is worth more than any stereo, game system, book, possible tv show, car or house you could ever own. Ownership is a vice. Greed leads to slavery.

Cherish your life and purchase your freedom by paying off your credit cards as soon as you possibly can - or better yet, DON'T CHARGE THEM UP. I own Grand Theft Auto 4 - trust me, it's not worth 40 hours a week at a job to be able to afford an Xbox 360, tv, and the game. No game is.

The one thing I know for certain, looking back on it now, is that every item I purchased while in debt was nothing more than a placebo - a momentary cure for the real pain, which was the fact that I was an indentured servant to my own desires. I'd buy a new pair of shoes, or a new game, and for a little while, I'd feel the time-for-dollars trade was worth it, because hey! New Nikes, right?

But no. Trust me - just... No.

There's NOTHING better than walking out your front door on a Wednesday and not realizing it's Wednesday as you head off to go do something. Anything. Walk in the park, visit the bookstore and not buy anything, hang out at a friend's house... The trappings of ownership and material goods lead to constant replacement of outdated shit. Visiting a nature preserve on a random weekday and watching frogs jump into the lake because you have no one to answer to can never be replaced.

If you're 18 years old and a freshman in college, you're going to be inundated with credit card offers. You're going to see a $1,000 balance limit as your chance to get yourself some sweet HD gaming action, or a nice trip to a ski lodge, or an impressive few dates with a hot dude or chick.

Suppress that. Or it'll chain you to a job you hate, just so you can pay for a lifestyle you couldn't afford without someone else's credit.

Anyway, that's all I have to say about that.

9.27.2008

Waiting in line for gas

I had half a tank of gas when I left the gym, and I knew I'd be driving around quite a lot this weekend so I thought I'd top off. I pulled in and noticed a lot of people camped out at pumps with bags over them. Then I spotted the tanker and caught on - this was probably my best chance to get gas for a while.



Nuts.

*** Update 2:50 PM ***

After leaving the station, I saw a few other stations that were receiving gas, and the associated lines that formed:

This is a BP on the back roads from the gym to my house. Tanker wasn't even there yet, according to a guy I asked, there was a rumor that it was on the way. Word spreads fast in the rural parts of the state.




This Texaco has no-one, and according to the guy in the store, they won't be getting a shipment until Tuesday at the earliest. That's really sad, especially since the BP just across the street (not the same as the one above) just got a shipment:


This is from the side entrance... the line actually extends all the way back about 15 car lengths.




Insane.

9.26.2008

An interesting week to say the least

My wife has been in Galveston TX and Beaumont, TX helping their respective Humane Societies and ASPCAs recover from Hurricane Ike all week.

When my wife is gone, I don't sleep.

Like, seriously. I go to bed at 4, and I get up at 6 or 7. I spend 3 hours a day at the gym, and the rest of the time, I'm working on crap (obviously not stories, I know - I'm just completely stuck on writing right now). So it's been a sleep deprived week for me.

However, I did get a lot of work done. I closed two long-standing contracts this month, freeing myself up for football and writing going forward. I also broke personal records in the gym that aren't just records, but milestones I NEVER thought I'd reach. You can ask any guy who works out - progress in the gym is measured by the number of 45 pound plates on either side of the bar, and I put a number of plates on bench, squat and power clean I NEVER thought I'd get. Ever.

My grandfather (my mother's father) passed this week. It wasn't a surprise - he's been sick for a while, and we expected it. And for the past few years, there's been some tough going in our relationship - but whats interesting is that the moment he passed, all of that stuff went out of my head. All I remember is the good stuff. And he did great things, and I miss that part of him.

I acquired some new Akira animation cels, and got the sleeve on my arm detailed quite a bit - pics coming soon. And the Anime Weekend Atlanta was fantastic - I met some great people, some really good artists. And the sleeve presented well. I was very happy.

I have been returning to the drawing table for the first time in nearly 10 years. I don't talk much about my drawerings, but I used to do quite a lot of comic and cartoon illustration when I was younger. It was a passion of mine. I had an opportunity to do some comic work on a much larger scale (national syndication), and I freaked out so bad I quit drawing altogether.

Stupid, I know. But if you've read the intro to my book, you know that I did the same thing with writing when I realized people were reading what I do. And my wife pretty much saved the book from going into file 13. And if I'm that big a sissy about silly stories about my life on the internet, and I'm only NOW getting back into drawing cartoons and comics, you can imagine how sensitive I am about that crap.

I remember my grandfather once walked in while I was drawing a spiderman vs. wolverine story - I was about 13 or 14 at the time - and he took a look over my shoulder, and he said "You're looking at your Mercedes right there."

I said "huh?"

He just smiled.

I said "I don't like Mercedes... I want a Porsche."

He said "You'll need to work a little harder for that... You can't fit in a Porsche, and they'll have to customize it for you." He then walked out of the room.

I'm 31 now, and I make the majority of my living in design and information architecture, with some coming from writing. Thinking back on that moment, I finally got what the hell he was talking about.

He was saying I was a fatass. But that's okay, because he supported my sports endeavors as well. And I find it odd that, on a week where I overcame a pretty big hurdle with my drawing and obliterated old personal records in the gym, he passed.

He once saved my life, you know. Or rather, you don't, because I could never bring myself to write that story (it's the missing part 3 of the "Ex-Peacock" stories). He also named me Anonymous when I was born, because I had to be transferred to another hospital and he pre-registered me there. There is a copy of a birth certificate for me with the name Ad Nom Bar Joseph (Anonymous, except for Joseph).

He loved doing that sort of thing.

I'll miss him, and I love the support he gave me.

Sorry for the rambling. I'll be cohesive later. I blame the bourbon.

9.25.2008

All That Remains (new muzak for your earhole)

For those of you who liked the bit of Adagio I shared the other day, you may find All That Remains to be ear-bleedingly awesome as well:





I first heard them on Sirius radio, where the band name and song name were reversed - so for the longest time, I thought they were Chiron. A google search for "Chiron Band" a few weeks ago turned up nothing. So I kinda just let it go. Then I downloaded the All That Remains pack on Rock Band, heard this song, and was TOTALY LIKE OMG.

Anyway, they're badass. Enjoy.

9.24.2008

SomaFM

I don't know why I haven't mentioned it before today, but I'm a huge fan of SomaFM.com.

SomaFM has some of the most amazing mixes of electronica I've ever heard, tailor-mixed by human DJs and 100% free of charge. There are multiple flavors depending on what you're into and how you feel, but my favorites by far are Groove Salad and Space Station Soma (if you use iTunes, MusicMatch, WinAmp or any other normal player, the station will automatically start playing when you click the link).

I mention them for two reasons:

1) They are truly, 100% badass - there isn't a day that goes by that I don't listen to SomaFM for at least an hour each day. If you're an artist, software developer, or someone who just likes (or, like me, needs) background sounds to help the brain work, they cannot be beat.

2) They're kinda hitting shaky times financially, what wih the RIAA sticking rods up the poopers of all internet radio stations.

If you check out SomaFM, I sincerely hope you dig it. If you dig it, I hope you'll contribute a little cash to them and help keep them afloat. If you donate more than 50 bucks, you get a t-shirt and stickers (I wear mine around wherever cool shirts are permitted by law).

I don't do this often (asking for donations for things, that is. In fact, I can count three times since I started posting to the net not including today, and all three were for my involvement with Team in Training and the Lukemia & Lymphoma Society). So you know I believe in it if I'm writing a plug post.

Ok, that's it, carry on with your day.

9.23.2008

The *Evil* Genius Sidebar (AKA Fuck You Apple, Part 4)

I officially hate the iTunes Genius Sidebar.

I turned it on to see how intelligently it could build a playlist for me, based on songs I was listening to. And it does a fine job of that. I allowed it to contact the iTunes store, so it could recommend for me music that matches my taste.

I went to play some Adagio today (one of the finest bands you've never heard). For the uninitatied, Adagio is a french prog-metal band with musicians that make Dream Theater look like The Eagles (that's an insult, by the way).

I clicked on the track "Next Profundus" of of Underworld (one of the best records you've never heard, and easily one of my top 10 of all time). And as soon as I did, I was greeted with a note from the Genius sidebar mentoning that I may be missing some songs:




Now, ever since I found Adagio back in 2002, I have been OBSESSED with finding anything and everything they have had a hand in. And one thing I've discovered is - there's not much. They're independent. They do their own covers, CD layout, designs, production, concerts - everything about them is indie, and what rules is that it SOUNDS FANTASTIC. No hissing in the masters, the levels are fantastic, and they know how to play their instruments (boy, do they know how to play them).

So it struck me as odd that a record could be out that I didn't know about. Alas, Apple had suggested it to me... The titles of the suggested songs seemed somewhat inline with what might be on an Adagio record (Fly Away, Everywhere, Working on a Building)... The cover looked as amateurish as any other Adagio record cover...

I checked MP3Fiesta.com to see if they had this album I supposedly didn't have, and it didn't show up. But MP3Fiesta and the like sometimes don't get records that aren't chart-toppers when they come out, so I decided to give iTunes a whirl and pay 10 bucks for this album.

When I got it, I saw the covers and the track listing in greater detail, and immediately warning flags went up:




...There's an awful lot of Jesus in the titles of these songs.

I double-clicked the first track, and... Well, how about I show you a little of "What-Joe-Expected-Versus-What-Joe-Got" and let you see for yourself. Be sure to listen to the whole video:





I seriously am sorry for doing that to you. But I had to illustrate my frustration and my pain somehow.

Not only was this Adagio clearly an impostor, but it was shitty protools basement-studio fake-ass R&B JesusBand singing glossy, tepid praises to God that could probably have been more poetic if typed by fifth graders in a creative writing class.

So yeah, between Adobe being a cocktease about CS4's release date and Apple getting my hopes up on some badass progmetal, ultimately to stick a tack in my balloon, my Tuesday is ruined. How's yours?

9.21.2008

OMG BACON & MAC & CHEESE

It's not new, but today is the first time I've seen the commercials for the new Pizza Hut "Tuscani Pastas". I was dismissive when I saw the Chicken Alfredo pasta, and I couldn't care less about the Meaty Marinara pasta - but when I saw that you can get OVER THREE POUNDS of Premium Bacon Mac & Cheese, my crotch got tingly and I nearly fainted.

That's THREE MOTHERFUCKING POUNDS of macaroni and cheese with bacon in it! Who cares if it's from Pizza Hut - notorious for sucking massive amounts of crap. THIS IS THREE POUNDS! OF BACON! AND MAC & CHEESE OMG I JUST CAME.

So yeah, I'm all about this. I hopped on their website and told them where I lived, then placed a quick order for this premium dish - when I saw this:



What kind of jewish muslim would remove the bacon from this most holy dish? I mean, seriously, it's enough to change religions over - MAC & CHEESE + BACON = THE FACE OF ALMIGHTY GOD.

And now the order is placed, and I'm sitting indian-style with my fingers and thumbs clasped in front of me, chanting a mantra of "mmmmmmmmm" until it arrives.

I shall let you know how it is.


*** Update 8:12 PM ***

Mariel Alper is clearly insane:



I reminded her that bacon is so good, they add it to Filet Mignon to make it better.

Bacon is AWESOME.

Bacon is my BFF.

Still waiting on Pizza Hut to deliver my dish.


*** Update 8:30 PM ***

Well.. It's here. And it's...

Well, look at it:



That is very clearly not this:



And now, to taste it:








IT'S NOT FAIR!

THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A HOLY AND DIVINE EXPERIENCE AND IT WAS MOST CERTAINLY NOT!

It tastes bad!

Like... Not inedible, just... Bad. Like, not worth $13.00 bad. And I think 3lbs includes the weight of the packaging as well.

Much like your first sexual experience, the hype and anticipation leads to a short, disappointing moment in which you soil your pants:



Ultimately disappointing. I are sad Peacock.

9.19.2008

Something I've noticed

It's only been in the past year that my wife has been traveling for times greater than a few days, and I never noticed it when I travel, but it turns out, I can't sleep when she's not around.

Seriously, I sleep like 2 - 3 hours a night. I always figured, while on the road, that it was just about the stuff going on while I was out and about. But now that she's on the road doing her hurricane search-and-rescue mega awesome job thing, I'm noticing that the clock is spinning and I'm not going to bed.

1 AM sprints past me like I'm the fat kid at recess. 2 AM marches past and doesn't even say hello. At least 3 AM has the common decency to let me know it's there... Not that I care much. It'll be 4 or 5 before I finally call it quits, then I'm back up again at 7 to go to the gym.

Fun times.

9.18.2008

Full house

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Sent via SMS. Please forgive any typos or pointlessness.

9.16.2008

A few things with little relation to one another

On the way home from the gym, I saw a sign for an optometrist that was advertising "We now have new Sarah Palin glasses!"

Last I checked, those were called Tina Fey glasses. But who knows, maybe it's time for a change... Maybe those glasses have swung from looking smart to looking blindingly stupid.

*

One of my favoritest people in the world, Seth Godin, linked an old article of his from Fast Company magazine in his blog post today. That article was the first thing I ever read by Seth - I remember clearly sitting in a doctor's office thumbing through the Fast Company magazine and landing on that article, and being instantly hooked. The guy GOT it... More than that, he got ME.

I'm totally incompetent. I have no best practices, only a wild imagination and more determination than common sense. It's 99% of the reason everything I do ends up having some sort of snag or gaffee, and 100% of the reason life is just so much fun all of the time.

*

I don't particularly like pastry, except for Toaster Strudel. I don't know why. I just love me some Toaster Strudel.

*

I'm getting to the point in my human development where I need to decide if I'm going to a) be in shape, or b) eat pizza. Because I can't do both. And I know what you're going to say, you're going to say "Hey, Joe, Michael Phelps eats like 22 pizzas a day and he's in shape!" And that's good for Michael Phelps. The problem is, if I choose to eat pizza, I'm going to choose to eat 23 of the damn things, not 22 - and I don't exercise enough to justify that much pizza. But God, do I love pizza. Almost as much as Toaster Strudel.

*

At some point, someone's going to invite me to some party or function that I'm not going to want to go to, and I'm going to go anyway, and I'm going to look across the room and there will be standing Sean Hannity right next to Bill O'Reilly, and I'm going to be so glad I went because I'll finally get to practice my left-hook-to-right-spinning-backfist combo. Because I totally want to smash both of those dipshits into paste.

And for the sake of balance (and so XavierMuskie doesn't call me a NeoLib again), I want to do the same thing to Janine Garaffalo. But she's a lady, and I won't hit ladies. But I'd totally pee on her shoes if she accidentally went into the men's restroom at my imaginary party.

*

Email used to be so exciting for me. When I first got a computer and had an email address, there'd be blocks of three or four days where I didn't get a single email. It was so exciting back in those days to check your inbox and see a little number next to it, indicating that someone somewhere not only had an email address, but had yours as well, and the two of you were now communicating without using stamps.

That was 15 years ago. I think it stopped being fun the moment I started working jobs that used email to communicate. Somehow, once something becomes work, it's no longer exciting. It's just... Work. That's not to say you can't have an exciting job, it's just that those jobs aren't work. Work is work. Getting paid to do things is not the same as working.

*

Radiohead's "In Rainbows" sounds SO much better to me now than when it came out.

9.11.2008

Just... WOW.

The makers of this toy saw nothing wrong at all with this.

Sticky. Starfish.

I have no words.

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Sent via SMS. Please forgive any typos or pointlessness.

9.10.2008

WOMEN - Why do you insist on driving me fucking crazy?

Seriously - why the hell are women, as a gender, so fucking stupid? Don't get me wrong - I could, and probably will, espouse on how fucking stupid men are as a gender... But I am one, so I already know the answers to all the questions regarding male stupidity. What I DON'T understand is how females - the fairer gender by far - fall for such blindingly obvious and stupid ploys to appeal to their society-induced fragility. For instance:

Why do women watch, much less emulate, the show Sex in the City? They're whores, ladies. Whores. Why do you want to be a whore? Please don't be a whore.

Why do women buy Cosmopolitan magazine, Glamour magazine, Vogue magazine, et al and think that the airbrushed, half-an-apple-a-day model types are what men want? They're not. They're ugly, waifish Skeletor clones that, in some sick and twisted way, have become what YOU think the ideal woman is... Not us. Sure, there's a few bubba redneck fratboys out there who think Pam Anderson is hot, but they also hang rubber testicles on the towhook of their oversized monster truck that serves as compensation for their tiny penises.

Why do women buy this Sarah Palin bullshit? It's so obvious that the right-wing neocon propaganda machine is pandering to your vagina, I'm offended FOR you. She's a fucking moron. McCain is a fucking moron. Put the two together... Two fucking morons. And for whatever reason, the moment John McCain announces that the experienceless hockey mom from Alaska might have a shot at 2nd place running this country, you run en masse from supporting Obama to supporting the same asshole party that have ruined this nation:
"White women have moved from 50-42 percent in Obama's favor before the conventions to 53-41 percent for McCain now, a 20-point shift in the margin that's one of the single biggest post-convention changes in voter preferences. The other, also to McCain's advantage, is in the battleground Midwest, where he's moved from a 19-point deficit to a 7-point edge. "
WHY????? Because she's a woman? I mean, is that the reason? Because it certainly can't be her stance on issues, her experience, or her qualifications, because she has none. Of any of those. No stances, just sound bites. No experience, except in scandals. And no qualifications - just beliefs in a religion that she bases her policy on.

And this whole "Lipstick on a pig" red herring coming from the McCain / Palin camp? Seriously, if you believe the spin - if you HONESTLY believe it was a dig on Palin - not only do you need to go back to grammar school and learn "context," but you're also fucking stupid.

That's not just for females, by the way. Goes for men too.

Fucking. Stupid.

Why do you spend 2 hours getting ready to go out anywhere? You claim it's because it's what men want, but it's not. Trust me. It's just not. We find you hot as is - done deal. The hard work was done the moment the X chromosome was doubled up. You want to spend effort on making yourself attractive? Work on your self respect and confidence if they're lacking. If not, well... This article probably isn't for you anyway. In fact, you stopped reading a while ago. I'm not sure why I'm even trying to talk to you.

Why do you give a shit about what men think of you in the workplace? I had a long conversation with a woman - a highly regarded, strong willed and talented female in a managerial position at a Fortune 500 company. We were discussing my article on male communications, and she expressed to me all the little things that go through a woman's mind when she meets a man in a professional setting. She wanted to know what types of handshakes meant what, so that she could perfect her greeting.

You know what I told her? The truth - "When a man meets you, in all settings, at all times, the very first thing going through his mind is not your handshake, your makeup, your tone of voice or your qualifications. He's judging whether or not he finds you attractive."

It's just true. It doesn't mean he's wondering if he wants to sleep with you (because he's not, the answer is already "yes" to that one). He's just considering if you're attractive. After that, he's going to listen to and consider anything and everything you have to say... But yeah, the first thing is whether or not you're hot. And you can quit worrying about if a man respects you or not... Male respect is earned through time. It's just how it is. You want to earn your male superior's respect? Do a good job. Want to earn a male co-worker's respect? Do a good job. Easy.

Sure, there's guys out there who will disrespect you because you're a female - these are the same types of guys who disrespect other males based on race, or what college they went to, or what car they drive... They're limp-dicks. Period. They can't get it up unless they feel empowered, and the quickest way to feel empowered is to put your boot on someone's head. They go for the easy kill.

Ignore them and move on.

Why do women even bother putting up with men's shit? All you have to do is, as a gender, unionize and agree to close your legs until men start listening to reason. Men are sexual addicts, period. They want what you've got. Just withhold it - en masse - until we start listening (of course, until you stop watching fucking Sex in the City and reading Cosmo, we're not going to want to listen...)

It might seem like I'm hating on women... I'm not. I'm hating on stupidity. And I'm choosing wide swaths of shared behavior among the female gender to do it. And I'm doing it because YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO BE BETTER THAN US.

We're neanderthals. We hunt and we kill and we grunt and we compare penis lengths. Everything we do, as a gender, is a variation on those four things.

You teach. You nurture. You empower. You care. These things are much much much harder to do than bashing someone's head in with your fist or calling someone names or spending money to compensate for shortcomings. They take INTELLIGENCE.

So why the hell aren't you using it? Good God... Don't you realize that, if you actually organized, you could run this entire planet within a week?

If I didn't love you all so much, I wouldn't be so angry about all of this.


*** Update 11:19 PM ***

Since it came up...

Want to know why I am so anti-Palin and anti-gender-based-voting?

I'll let none other than a Harvard Law grad with honors explain for me, in terms much clearer than I'm capable of using, with a face that most ladies would consider far more attractive:


9.08.2008

BIFF! POW! ZAP!

I got socked today:



Gnarly, huh? As if I didn't already frighten women and small children as it is. I also got a nice fat bottom lip.

But you should see the other guy... He walked away without a scratch, because he's a brown belt in jiu jitsu and I am a lowly white belt pleeb.

He did feel pretty bad about it, though.

9.06.2008

I figured it out

I'm at UFC 88 with Jeremy and Mike, and we've come to the conclusion that UFC doesn't actually stand for 'Ultimate Fighting Championship.'

It's actually an algebraic equation, where U = 'Ugly TapOut shirt', F = 'Fatass ex-jock' (or 'Fratboy'), and C = 'inComplete barbed-wire arm tattoo.'

Check our work... It solves.

9.03.2008

Meet Tiny Tim


This is the cutest little kitten ever.

His front paws are deformed. They're permanently bent in, and he has to walk on his forearms.

He's a feisty little kitten, too. He chases everything across the room, and it's hilarious because a) he ka-lomps everywhere and b) he can't stop, since he has no pads on his forearms.

He's hilarious. I love him.

9.02.2008

Cell phone vs. Bible

I've received the following little missive as both an email forward from my family (who very clearly don't listen to me when, at gatherings, I explain to them very clearly: If it has the letters 'F' and 'W' in the subject when you receive it, do NOT send it to me), and as a feed item in Facebook and other places. It's actually a really cute comparison for the evangelical crowd:

Cell phone vs. Bible

Ever wonder what would happen if we treated our Bible like we treat our cell phone?
  • What if we carried it around in our purses or pockets?
  • What if we flipped through it several time a day?
  • What if we turned back to go get it if we forgot it?
  • What if we used it to receive messages from the text?
  • What if we treated it like we couldn't live without it?
  • What if we gave it to Kids as gifts?
  • What if we used it when we traveled?
  • What if we used it in case of emergency?
This is something to make you go....hmm...where is my Bible?

Oh, and one more thing: Unlike our cell phone, we don't have to worry about our Bible being
disconnected because Jesus already paid the bill.

But then I wondered... What if the Bible really were treated like a cell phone?

If everyone treated their bible like their cellphone:
a) Just about every one of them would have a ringtone made from Ezekiel 23, verses 19 and 20; "(19)Yet she increased her whorings, remembering the days of her youth, when she played the whore in the land of Egypt (20)and lusted after her paramours there, whose members were like those of donkeys, and whose emission was like that of stallions."

b) The bible would go off in restaurants, movie theaters, and other places where it shouldn't (and annoy people),

c) You'd be talking about your bible while at the counter at the bank (and annoy people),

d) If you talked about your bible while fueling your car, it'd EXPLODE

e) There'd be "bible bling" at the counter at every gas station and Bible Wireless store.

f) Douchebags would have leather holsters for their bible (oh wait, I think they already do this)

g) There'd be commercials all over Comedy Central advertising competing Bible services and how some are better at avoiding dropped prayers. At least one of them would have a priest walking across the country looking at the sky asking "Can you hear me now?"

h) Which service provider would get exclusivity on the iBible?

i) "3G" takes on a whole new meaning (ask any collegate history teacher what the 3 g's of the crusade were)

j) At least now, you won't get dirty looks in church when it goes off.