Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"The Mother's Rolodex"

I think its hard for older people to understand the concept of networking websites such as MySpace, Facebook and LinkedIn. Still trapped in the 1960's my Mom has a Rolodex of phone numbers (most of them outdated) the size of the bible. In fact, if Jesus was around today, dealing with the betrayal and religious persecution would be a walk in the park after a plethora of harassing phone calls from my Mom requesting updated addresses, phone numbers, and urine samples from him and each one of the disciples.

Twice a week I get calls from her asking for someone's updated number, address, or messenger pigeon route. I don't think she's caught on that most people no longer have home numbers nor do they use their home address for anything in particular. Handing out your address these days can only result in an annoying relative coming to visit, a rotting array of acorn squash in your mailbox placed there by a fantasy football rival, or a Spanish speaking nine-year old showing up on your doorstep - a result of an inebriated, two-dollar-you-call it one night stand during a road trip to Tijuana back in college.


With PayPal, Cards, Evite, MySpace and unlimited online porn sites there should be no reason for any sort of card, invitation, old unwanted VHS tapes, or check arriving at my door.

My Mom also still balances her checkbook which is a concept I've never fully understood. In my opinion if someone wants to embezzle $40 a month from my account, I'm completely fine with that if that means I don't have to go through each miniscule transaction, carry the one, add the six and calculate where every penny is going.

Last week my Mom somehow compared the online business networking site LinkedIn with AIDS. (Yes the Auto Immune Deficiency one). The same disease that has killed thousands world wide all of a sudden is no different than logging onto your LinkedIn account to find other investment bankers in your area...

At first I tried to explain the concept - such as you create an account and then connect with other people who have similar jobs or maybe for looking for a new job and then you gain access so you can search their connections and so on and so forth. First she was confused because I had a connection with my cousin Debbie. "Debbie isn't looking for a job," my Mom interrogated. Once we got past the fact that you can just have an account and don't have to be job seeking I explained the networking part of the site, where you connect to others and then gain access to their connections.

"That sounds a lot like AIDs", she responded.

"No Mom, that actually is nothing like AIDs!" I responded shell-shocked.

"Well you sleep with one person, and then they sleep with another, and it's like you are sleeping with everyone," she responded.

"Mom I just don't think you are getting it."

"You should add your friend Joey, he has a good job," she suggested, starting to grasp the concept.

"Mom, I'm sorry Joey doesn't have AIDs, so I don't think I'll be adding him, sorry..." All these sites serve one general purpose and that is keeping in touch with people that you normally wouldn't have. And there is a reason you normally wouldn't keep in touch with them and that is because you don't want to! MySpace is probably the most dangerous for any sort of relationship because it allows any girl from your friend's list, most of whom you have never met to leave whatever seductive, outlandish, and suggestive comment on your page for the whole world to see before you even you. There is no judge and jury of your peers to determine the validity of the message left, just the interpretation of every visitor of your page to decipher the message to their discretion.

Maybe my Mom has it figured out actually. To this day I haven't heard of one incriminating message resulting from the retro-60's Rolodex...Hmm...I might have to cancel my MySpace account and pick up a fancy dex from my local antique store after all.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

"Shenanigans Volume IV"

Throughout this blog I'll be posting frivolous bits of observations that will most likely cause you to scratch your head and thank god the loved ones in your life aren't as wickedly eccentric as myself. With that said, please read on and don't forget to visit the comment page should you choose to add your own shenanigan stories or just need a place to voice your useless tidbits of information as well.

...Is there any sort of time period that a waitress will ignore you before both the patron and waitress just have a mutual agreement that there is going to be no service rendered? At a restaurant/bar last week I asked a waitress for some help who responded she would be back over shortly. She walked by three more times, each time making full eye contact with me while mentioning she would be over soon. Finally the fifth time she just stopped acknowledging me altogether, thus reaching me to the point of no return. (Or no service rather). She never offered and I guess since she had denied me four times that was just the end of it as she kept passing by without stopping, or even looking in my direction for the next hour. It would have been much easier if she just let me know she wasn't going to help ever or at least... "Hello sir, I'm going to walk by you repeatedly, promising service, never actually grant you service, and then finally ignore you all together, how does that sound?" "Wow that sounds great, do I just stand here and look like a moron, for what...say twenty, thirty minutes?"

...Why do people always have to ask what you do for a living? I'll be out at a bar and some random guy or girl I've just met always has to press that question. Why can't they just ask me something less personal, like how many people I've slept with or something? Since I've been unemployed on and off for the past year I usually try to dodge the question by making a joke and say I'm a stripper on Tuesdays. Or I'll try to change the subject like I knew I shouldn't have eaten that raw jackrabbit earlier and hold my stomach in pain. Let's be honest here, if a girl meets a guy in a bar, what are the chances they get to the point where the guy's profession actually matters anyway? I can't remember the last girl I've run across that met her husband, a molecular chemical engineer at a dive bar on a Friday night. "Meet my husband Rob; he is a NASA engineer and volunteer marine biologist on his nights and weekends. Isn't he lovely? We met when we were wasted, playing beer pong down at the Bub's pool hall..." I mean, if you meet me, I'm a living human being surviving in San Francisco, so I have to be doing something right, does it matter if I work for Google or not? The thing is anyone who asks that question obviously is just dying to tell you what they do, like they are making this huge difference in the world or something. Not many proctologists or janitors are asking you that question so chances are when you hear it you are going up against a financial analyst, a third grade teacher or some sort of fancy title that no one has ever heard of but sounds cool to say like a senior quantitative analyst or something. I love the guys who say yes I'm an Executive Account Quantifier at Charles Schwab. At first you are impressed, but then when you actually start questioning them..."So let me guess this straight, you refill the toilet paper in the men's room so the janitor doesn't have to..." "Well not exactly, I uh..." "So, you're a janitor..."Well not exac-ok yes." So next time a girl asks you what you do for a living just say "I'm a garbage man and I pick up rotting raccoon carcasses every morning...So are we going to sleep together or what?"

...Has anyone out there figured out how vicious, diabolic locked-up inmates get out of jail on good behavior? What does that mean exactly? Isn't that the whole reason they were in jail in the first place; bad behavior? Now all of a sudden these criminal thugs are transformed into Mary Poppins and let out on the street, because they happened not to maim or sodomize anyone while behind bars?

"Well yes Jim does go by the nickname of "Knife Stabber," and yes he did murder a family of twelve in cold blood using only his hands, a staple remover and a Teddy Ruxpin doll causing each of them to die a slow and painful death in broad daylight, but he did plant a lovely row of daisies next to the latrines on the south lawn so he's out on good behavior." Good behavior? Good behavior? He's murdered someone!

Inside the joint it seems like cutthroat losers who are absolute morons on the outside, suddenly morph into Albert Einstein in jail. You always hear about these atrocious weapons being created on the inside out of absolutely nothing. A guy who couldn't even figure out how to work a microwave on the outside all of a sudden miraculously can turn his underwear into a pitchfork on the inside.

"Damndest thing, Rick, One eyed Russell couldn't even spell his name when he came in here. An IQ of negative twelve they said, but last week we gave him a tube sock, a quisinart and three muskrats and the guy came up with this self-generating desalination purifier which can generate four-hundred gallons of drinking water from once ounce of salt water. Brilliant...Did I mention it also converts into a rocket launcher?"

"What is he in for?"

"He murdered seven tourists, but he'll be out on good behavior next week."

"Because of the water purifier?"

"Nope, it is because he cooks a lovely brisket, he sure is a swell guy..."