Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Joy of Hating and/or Ignoring People You Know

As you get older, you come to find some of the more enjoyable things in life are not exactly what you thought was enjoyable when you were a teen. For example, you develop a taste for cognac, fine cigars, expensive clothing, classic art museums, haute cuisine, English poetry. In other words, you become a raging bore worthy of a bullet to the forehead. But with aging you can properly cultivate the one grand luxury unfeasible when you're younger (and one of the nastiest legal pleasures known to mankind): the delicate art of learning how to be intolerably rude to former classmates/old friends when you see them in public.

This isn't something you can delight in when you're just out of school - it's a treat for the older, more refined, more experienced person. You can't very well pretend to not know someone just a year after you left high school or college (unless you're a major stoner, in which case your stupidity will be chalked up to your addiction, thereby negating the proper reaction). So give it a few years after the fact. Let gravity draw everyone's faces to the ground. Let overeating and a slower metabolism make them look bloated. Let their early, miserable marriage and 2.4 kids (by the age of 23!) be something to mock and mock and mock. Let yourself come to the realization that you never liked any of those people to begin with.

Let me give you one example. I was out to dinner with someone, and the waiter who served our table was someone I went to high school with. Now, I never liked this guy - he was cocky, he played football, etc. When he saw me - and I saw him - we recognized each other, but he never said, "Hey, man, how are you" or something like that. I never said anything in return. I ordered and was polite, continuing the trend of ignorance. We ate and I took the bill. It was about $32. I told the person I was with that I would cover the tab. And I did ... except, you see, I left $30. Only $30. Not the thirty two, mind you ... because I deduced the $2 and the tip for the (a.) lack of recognition and (b.) for the spittle that was probably in my dish. When asked by my Dining Companion what that was all about, I told her that the waiter "was a loathsome fuck" and that "he should eat my shit." She tried to be diplomatic: "What if he genuinely didn't remember you? Why didn't you say hello first?" This kind of diplomacy isn't needed in these parts: mentally, I run a Stalinist regime. My explanation was adequate. My dining companion was liquidated.

Allow me another example. I was at the Mall (!) with my Mom (!) and ran into a former classmate's Mom. My Mom and her Mom knew each other from way back to the old PTA days together. Now, I'm already in an odd situation: I'm at the Mall (!) with my Mom (!) ... nothing wrong with that in most parts of the world where family is vital, but we live in the mad-cap, suicide-friendly, homicide-ready United States where parents are people you immediately need to run away from at 16 and never talk to again ... so you get what I'm saying. So this woman spends the whole time bragging about her daughter, who just got married (Mom and I always thought she was a lesbian, but that's another thing), who has a high paying job and who just bought a mansion, who drives a Ferrari, who makes U.N. members drink her piss out of champagne glasses, etc. She went through this litany and My Mom and I just nodded, nodded, nodded. Eventually her verbal masturbation ran out of steam and she asked me what I was doing and I just shrugged my shoulders. "Digging ditches" I volunteered. "It pays the bills!" We laughed. She then changed course again, continuing her praise of her daughter, how she collects "priceless" antiques with her husband, how her boss just gave her a raise for being Incredible and Invaluable, how she's up for some award and work, etc. etc. and Mom and I just kept listening. When we got a moment to speak, I told this woman the following: "Look, Mrs. _____, I wish [your daughter] the best of success in the future, but quite frankly, I couldn't stand her when we were in school together. She was kind of stuck-up, and if I never see or hear her name again the rest of my days I will be very happy." The woman glared at me, told my Mom it was nice seeing her and huffed off. My Mom was embarrassed, but I felt so good I needed a cigarette.

It goes on. A young woman I went to college with runs in my neighborhood with her dogs - I've tried numerous times to just say hello to her but she's always snubbed me so I now actively try to run over her dogs with my car. I've searched the alumni database of former college colleagues and had their e-mail accounts bombed so bad it made the U.S. attack on Baghdad look like a water balloon fight. In my various places of employment, I've worked with several people I went to high school and college with ... and routinely pretended like they didn't exist. I sent a former professor a giant dildo (because she needs to get fucked ... hard) and a lot of free boxes courtesy of the U.S. Postal Service (they deliver ... for you). Sometimes a friend will say, "Man, you remember _______? She was asking how you were doing" and I'll respond "Who?" even though I know exactly who the hell it is. "Tell her I'm working as a river boat captain in Belize with my Nigerian wife Nbutu," I'll reply and then move onto another topic of conversation, like why the room is not spinning and why I am not face down in an ad-mixture of drool and spilled beer.

The voices of reason are sure to object. "Matt, you're a nut! I love all these people! They're my History!" Stop right there Chuckles. This message is not for you. If you want to pretend people you played kickball with at recess are people you still want to talk to at age 35, go right ahead. If you think 3rd grade is something you'd like to remember forever, go crazy on Facebook and talk about that day the retarded girl puked on the floor. Send Christmas Cards and photos of your fugly children with snot in their hair and half-chewed cereal on their clothes. But if you're like me, the best route is to move out of town after the age of 18 and go live with some 40-year-old pervert in Michigan. Or join the Marines and hide in a hill of sand, shooting at 10-year-olds armed with Russian rocket launchers. Change your name to "Cougar" or "Geech" or "Melody" or something like that. Go to Mexico and run for Governor; make "DONKEY SHOW!" your official slogan (and don't worry, you don't need to translate it). But please, please, leave the town you were raised in. And if you can't, either get good at lying or slam your head really hard against a brick wall until the lights go out. Because Amnesia - either real or pretend - is a joyful way to jaunt through life and aggravate those foolish enough to try to remember you.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

My First Experience with Pleasure

I was young, too young perhaps. It was the year 1989. I had a keen interest in playing in the fields, staring at the clouds, eating candy like they were about to close the Sugar Factory, dreaming of a future filled with joy and wonderment and bicycles and hi-fives and Kool-Aid for breakfast. But those dreams crashed one afternoon, and that crashing came courtesy of a Keds sneaker crushing my genitalia.

For the purpose of this little autobiographical piece, let's call the young lady that introduced me to this Realm of New Sensations "Kalista Kladams." Kalista was a girl in my Fifth Grade class, she was cute and pert, she liked Garfield comics, she had that kinky hair that made the boys shoot milk out of their noses. Kalista sat next to me in class, and I had a crush on her. We would tease each other: I would steal her pencil. She would draw on my arm. I would steal her backpack. She would rat me out to the teacher for doodling ninjas in my notebook. I would steal her lunchbox and throw it in the hall. In the end, however, it was she who stole my innocence.

Later in our complex relationship, I moved on to telling stories about her, defacing her belongings and throwing the ball at her face in gym class. (I was quite the charmer.) She had a fiery temper, and would throw the ball right back at me. But this 'playfulness' of ours got progressively darker. In Phonics class should started slapping me in the back for calling her Mother a "retarded bitch." She stomped on my feet. She confiscated my copies of GamePro. She poked me in the ribs with her My Little Pony pencil set. I didn't know it then, but this love was getting out of hand.

One day, it reached its apex. We were standing in line for the bus and she was in front of me. Being the upstanding gentleman I am, I stepped in front of her, claiming that men sit in the front of the bus while the inferior women sat in the back. This was too much for Kalista, and she stepped back, raised her white sneaker (with pom-poms, oh God I remember the pom-poms) and did a front snap kick right into my testicles. I fell like an old man on a skating rink filled with banana peels. It was a sensation I wasn't used to. My hands covered my special place, and my special place throbbed. In my eyes I saw the stars of the Universe, the rivers of Africa, the wallabies of Australia. I saw Christ himself, and he was giving me the thumbs-up. My body trembled and my knees felt weak. My forehead dripped sweat. What was this ... new feeling? Panicked, Kalista tried to pick me up from the ground, but I told that snatch to keep her hands off me. I needed to relish the moment.

I staggered home and iced my privates in the bathtub with a single ice cube. I ate an entire box of candy cigarettes, exhaling sugar dust. I didn't tell my parents what happened. It was like the soldiers coming back from World War II. How do I adapt to life now that I felt ... this? What would I say? My dream of those halcyon days of splendor in the grass were over. I discovered what real joy was, and it was my balls being slammed into by the shoe of a female.

The following day Kalista, realizing she made a mistake, apologized. I nodded, but didn't know what to say. She was really remorseful, too, because nothing else I could do to her could get her to kick me again. I prodded and poked, I mocked her in-bred heritage. No kicking. I made comments like, "I dare you to kick me there again!" But she wouldn't! I turned a sinner into a saint! Tired of this lack of cooperation, I had to look elsewhere, to other girls with attitude problems and a penchant for aggressiveness.

I basically broke up my relationship with Kalista when our desks got moved. We were three feet away from each other, but it could have been the universe. I would stare at her kinky hair and dream of damage done to my reproductive system. I was now seated next to Peter, who ate his own snot.

My quest for rare ecstasy of this kind continued. In Sixth Grade, I started taking karate and refused to wear an Athletic Supporter. I used to verbally goad in the girls in my karate class by telling them that all American females were bred to do was bleed monthly and bake custard pies. I used to try to step ever so carefully into their thrusting kicks, attempting to time it just so that their feet would meet my mid-section in just the right way. At home, I tried to slide down the railing hoping for the same kind of experience, and it hurt like a bastard, but it wasn't the same. Ultimately, I gave up the dream. There was only one girl like Kalista. She broke me in the best way she knew how.

And I never had the chance to thank her.

Sunday, July 1, 2007

Regarding Matters of Sun and Skin

You need a license to drive a car. You need a license to sell alcohol. You need a license to fish. You need a license to hunt. You need a license to have your house renovated. You need a license to set up a shop and sell goods. You need a license to practice medicine. So the question that remains is this: if you need a license for all of these very important and essential aspects of life, why don't you, if you are in fact a born female, need a license to wear a bikini?

I know what you're thinking. "Matt, you misogynist fuck, not with this again. Just because you look like you stepped out of a concentration camp and onto a treadmill doesn't mean that's the case with everyone else. Look, we live in one of the richest countries of the world and we've horded the food from all the other countries just for ourselves. Those starving children? We've got their pork chops. The antibiotics in the cows? We get the privilege of eating the cows and drinking those tasty chemicals in the milk. Our tap water? Kinda tainted. Our soda? It's rotting our teeth. Isn't that sweet and shit? Aren't we fortunate?"

My answer is this: please die in a fire. That's not the direction I was going. See, I just came back from a cruise in the Caribbean. Yes, it was awesome, and yes I smuggled some hash pipes back from Mexico and yes I did drink champagne and almost run over a rooster with an All Terrain Vehicle and yes I did sneak past customs some Cuban tobacco products and go over the U.S.-allowed limit with the purchase of bottles and bottles of Duty Free liquor. But while on that cruise ship I saw something more vile than any river in any 3rd world country or any bowl of rotting meat in Spain: I saw chubby girls in bikinis.

The day on the cruise ship would start off innocently. I would enjoy a nice breakfast of fruit and cereal and tea. Then, I would take my beach towel, iPod and sunglasses and sit along either the port or starboard side of the boat eager to stare at ass all afternoon or until I felt the need for more champagne. And then in front of me would traipse what I can only describe as buckets of tan slime wrapped in sparse pieces of lycra. I mean, my hearing's not the best, but I could have sworn the lycra was making squealing noises ... the kind animals make when they're in the process of dying.

And one by one they passed by my deck chair, and one by one it appeared like a motley circus. Being raised Catholic, I couldn't help but think of Noah's Ark: here I am on a boat in a sea, and here are various animals on parade. But Noah would have limited the boat to two hippos. Because Noah had some standards.

If you're fat or large or obese, yes, yes I know it's your genes or whatever bullshit you've been force-fed. That's perfectly acceptable. But what's not acceptable is exposing all of that largeness to an unsuspecting populace looking for tight ass in stretchy material. Like me. I want to be entertained, not repulsed. So you've got a little extra. Don't wear a bikini. So you like Oreos. I actually like Oreos too. Don't wear a bikini. Over 50? Don't wear a bikini. My skinniness and paleness aren't exactly going to set womanhood back fifty years, so I keep my clothes on.

But, if you're eighteen or over (looks around suspiciously) and you look damn good naked, wrap that nakedness with something sexy as hell and strut around the boat. Maybe you might want to ... get into the pool and dry off by walking. Walking a lot. Walking this way, walking that way - looking over the edge of the boat into the water. You can drink something. But drink it slowly. Order a beer. In a bottle. And drink it slowly. And don't mind my camera clicking. And don't mind my video camcorder. That's right. And don't mind my binoculars. Oooh, yeah, that's it. That's right. And don't mind my telescope. God, yes, yes, that's it. And don't mind my jeweler's loupe. Mmmmm, yessss ... so dirty, so raw ... mmmmmm ...

...

...

...

... wait, where was I going with this again?

Saturday, April 7, 2007

A King for a Lifetime

Okay, so I went to the King Tut exhibit at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, and it was full of stupid children and obnoxious mothers, but the artifacts were nice to look at. But I kept wondering, why does anybody care about this guy, anyway? He died at 19. He didn't accomplish much.

Then after some digging and dissecting, I realized something: by the time he was 14, he had a harem. Let me repeat this with bold and italics and caps: BY THE TIME HE WAS 14, HE HAD A HAREM. Of chicks! Some did that thing with their hips that he liked. Some did that thing with their mouths that he liked. Hell, all of them did whatever he demanded any time all the time. If he wanted some Ovaltine, one poured the milk and the other stirred with the spoon. When he wanted the TV channel changed, he didn't have to use a friggin' clicker, oh no. He clapped his hands. Bitch get me a salad, bitch blend me a strawberry daiquiri, bitch I'm out of CD-Rs go run to Staples I don't care if the Chariot is broken walk goddamn it. It's sandy and hot outside? No shit, we're in fucking Egypt.

In a way, this is a little disheartening. I'm bunches older than he ever was and never had a harem. I mean, what am I doing with my time, anyway? If I did have a harem, I'll guarantee you this: they'll most certainly have an exhibit about me in 400 years or so. They'll worship me with candles and big ass murals. Smelly kids and their cunt mothers will pay good money to see the Matt Exhibit.

I have to do a few things first, of course. I have to convince my Grammy to make space for them in the cellar. Then I'll have to ask Mom and Dad for permission to convert our home into a brothel. They freaked when I wanted to bring home a pet cat, imagine five to ten young women of various sexual abilities sitting around the house, looking bored. I'm sure my whores will be using up all my bandwidth with their laptops and AIM and iTunes, and eating all my whole grain foods and drinking all of my Diet Coke. I'm not sure when I'll get into the bathroom to take a shower. I'll never be able to use my car, since they'll always need to go to the mall to buy pants. Forget about using the phone, because they'll be hogging the land line while running up the cell phone minutes I'll no doubt be paying for. They won't like the music I listen to, and probably pawn all my CDs and DVDs for whatever pop twaddle whores listen and swing on the poles to. They'll never let me watch ice hockey or the Cartoon Network or CNN, because they'll tell me that "crap" is for "fags and retards."

... sigh. I give up. It won't work. It was a different age ... a different time. King Tut, I look to you with awe. You wouldn't let your harem take over. You'd whip those hoes with coat hangers until they didn't know any better. Those that didn't listen would have gotten sold for useful things, like rope or cocaine or camels. That's why I paid $40 to see your necklaces and gold daggers and the containers where they kept your internal organs. Because your rotting liver is ten times the man I'll ever be.

History. I'm learnings it somethings good.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The Feast of St. Onan

Valentine's Day is so goddamn commercial and pretentious and gimmicky that the temptation to fight against it - regardless of pressing commitments and nonsense of that nature - is strong in the observant and defiant. And nonconformist. And me.

So if you are intolerant of materialism and social pressures and forced l'amour, turn the 14th of February completely on its head. Instead of directing that l'amour outwardly - towards the individual who puts up with your endless bullshit, listens to your boring stories and never stops calling you at odd hours to complain about how her life is being ruined by some other bitch - redirect it inwardly: turn Valentine's Day into the Feast of St. Onan, and let that love dribble all over your carpet.

For the Feast of St. Onan, I'm treating myself to a delicious dinner of bread and tea, because I know my body, and my body abhors extraneous fat. I'm going to put on Slayer's Seasons in the Abyss, an album that most expresses my views on humanity, while simultaneously surfing for material that NetNanny wouldn't just block, but actually report me to the local psychiatric ward. Then comes the hot shower with some Bath & Body Works scented soap shit that I didn't buy made of what could be monkey piss or coconut rain, who the hell knows any more. After lathering up with that and singing all of U2's "One" over and over while crying - or at least until the hot water runs out - comes the scented candles and velvet bathrobe and my screening of Cannibal Holocaust, a film about insensitivity in the less civilized parts of the world.

Before I decide to sleep the remnants of the night away, I'll make sure to do about four shots of Jack Daniel's, put on an overcoat and cut the tires of my next door neighbors' cars or smash their mailboxes - depending on how angry I am with them after the shots - just so when they wake up in the morning they're guaranteed to have a pleasant day.

In other words, we need to learn from Wise Onan and his selfish ways. Forget others, remember thyself and save the money you were going to spend on pendants or charms or chocolate or frying pans or flowers to use in more personal and creative ways (night vision goggles, frivolous vacations, imported beer).