I told my psychiatrist that everyone hates me. He said I was being ridiculous — everyone hasn't met me yet. ~Rodney Dangerfield

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Thanksgiving and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before November 26th

1) Snoopy has appeared as a giant balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade more times than any other character in history, a whopping 38 times. Bet you feel guilty about how often you walk your dog.

2) An attra
ctive charismatic turkey named named Tom One received this year's Presidential Turkey Pardon. The charges from which Tom One was pardoned aren't shared with the general public, but I suspect they involve to the large quantities of snood he was caught distributing. Luckily he was a non-violent offender.

Since 1934, the Detroit Lions have "played" a game every Thanksgiving.

4) What does your favorite Thanksgiving food say about you?
5) This is Ralph the Thanksgiving Turkey. He was delicious.

Monday, November 16, 2015

From Paris With Love

I went to the emergency room this Saturday night. The doctor diagnosed me with the worst case of buzz kill he'd ever seen.

Exactly one and a half drinks into the night, and six weeks before the Paris Marathon three friends and I had been training for, I felt an overwhelming need to introduce my face to the floor of a local hookah establishment. It was a potential Code WGW (White Girl Wasted) and within minutes an ambulance arrived.

Many of you have probably heard assorted tales of interactions between athletes and medical personnel. When I'd imaged these stories they were always lighthearted in nature....

EMT: "I can't get a pulse over here!"
Patient: "Gotcha! I'm a distance runner, you see. My naturally low pulse rate is hilariously confusing."
EMT: "You rascal!"
Patient: "Now put that gurney away, drinks 
are on me!"

The reality of it wasn't nearly so charming. T
urns out, unless you're about to step onto an Olympic podium, doctors are hesitant to believe that it's exercise and not, say, opium causing your reduced pulse rate. And oh by the way all their machines are pre-set to beep if it drops below 50 so don't expect to get any sleep during your seven-hour wait.  

So me and my little brother 
 who deserves a very special shout-out here, for not only soldiering through a seven-hour ER wait, and being the first to call 911 following my face plant in the bar, but for also finding a way to put the other patrons at ease as I was hoisted onto a gurney in the middle of their shrimp tempura roll by joking, "She always finds a way to get out of paying the tab, am I right folks? This guy knows."  passed the time by Googling the potential diseases I could be dying from.

When I was fina
lly discharged it was at 4:30am, against medical advice, and with the discovery of an inverted T-wave on my EKG. What actually happened is still kinda a question mark.

But don't feel too bad for me, it just meant that my trip to Paris included a lot more cheese and wine and a lot less running 26.2 miles, which is, apparently, how most normal people travel overseas. It was the most beautiful, humbling, amazing trip I've ever taken. It's how I'll always remember Paris, except for the parts when we had too much wine.

"This is the way of peace: Overcome evil with good, falsehood with truth, and hatred with love." ~Peace Pilgrim

Saturday, October 10, 2015

If this, than that

Centuries have been spent studying why we're such terrible judges of character. The character of others, ourselves, my stuffed platypus Ralph. But despite hundreds of years of research we've yet to decide on the conclusive reason. For example:

1) If you think yo
u're good at reading people, than you've probably renewed your Match subscription for the seventh time. When meeting someone on a first date for coffee and a cookie, I'm sure I look confident and collected but studies have shown I actually look like a certain blue monster with an infinity for baked goods.

2) If you think you're likeable, think again. Forbes identifies 13 traits of likeability which include listening, genuineness, and interest in others. Absent these qualities, you're might instead just an asshole.

3) Unless you're a member of Mensa, you're probably not nearly as smart as you think. True intelligence can be found in the following traits: listening less than you talk,an overwhelming urge to  avoid drama, and being encouraging and supportive of people. So why are there so many loud-mouthed mean-spitted assholes convinced they have superior head smarts.? I blame Lifehhacks a recent phenomenon that offers up simplistic logic and tells us Steve Jobs has just shared the Secret of Life. 

4) For all you fellas convinced your wit can captivate a room, it's not just that you're not funny, it's also that you should be punched in the throat until we don't hate the sound of your voice. Cracked offers a lukewarm insight to how gender effects humor development but personally I think humor comes down to timing, topic, and tension. Jokes can have two of the three but if it's meant to be mean-spirited or hurtful, watch your one liner have the comical success of Danny DeVito's career. 

4) If you have even one of these 29 Signs from LifeBuzz that the things in your life are going better than you think. If you've made the best of a tough situation? If you've overcome the judgment of others, or yourself, if you've gone out of your way to help someone, than, don't worry Rock Star, it turns out you're killing it.

5) If you give a Mouse A Cookie you best watch your back, now that dangerous rodent knows where you live! 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - #WorldAnimalDay

1) More than a third of Major League baseball pitchers are left-handers, about three times the average among the general population. But why? Science How Stuff Works rules out witchcraft so I've exhausted my theories. Instead it's explained with a lot of scientific and technical mumbo jumbo with frankly still sound a lot like witchcraft to me.
2) Gaslighting is a form of mental abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making victims doubt their own me
mory, perception, and sanity.
3) The duck-billed platypus a semi aquatic egg-laying mammal indigenous to eastern Australia, including Tasmania. It is the only egg-laying mammal known to man and some of its more cuddly features include venous foot spurs and double cone eyes which it uses to see into your soul. But this terrifying creature can do more than simply be a crime against nature: 

4) The rock band AC/DC's name is a tribute to the rivalry between Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison

5) James Jesus Angleton, the left handed counterintelligence chief at the CIA from 1954 to 1975, suffered from crippling paranoia. 

But he like, these other unheeded paranoiacs, turned out to be right in the end. Read more and you'll see, you'll all see.

Friday, September 25, 2015


Approximately 13% of the world's population are southpaws. We don't talk about in front of strangers but my own father leans to the left. We'll never know the true percent of lefties because many were forced to change handedness during childhood by teachers, parents, or the Aryan Society for Right Handed World Domination (you didn't hear it from me).
While historically, we enjoy shunning and/or ridiculing minorities, according to Chris McManus this tiny percentage has produced an above-average quota of high achievers. The magnitude of famous lefties is truly outstanding considering there's no explanation for why people are left handed.

But if you've ever suspected you're an underground leftie or just need more research in order to infiltrate this fascinating group, visit The Left Handers Club  

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Bipolar and Me and Me: 5 Things I've Learned about Bipolar II Disorder - Part IV

1) Many antipsychotic medications, such as lithium, will decrease your tolerance to heat. This effect, as estimated by my psychiatrist, will make the current temperature feel approximately 15 degrees warmer to you (e.g. a mild 86 degrees becomes a blistering 101 degrees). 
2) At 3:00am, no one cares about your hypomania. Not even your mom when you call her to tell her about it.
3) Determining the right medication balance to treat your bipolar symptoms can feel like a
 ride, only bipolar gets to drive and he's a little bit of a drinker. And he's also not getting laid since most medications have the dreaded side effect "decreased sexual performance." If you're one of the lucky ones not effected, lube your way to mental well being.  
4) Saint Dymphna is t
he Patron Saint of those suffering for nervous and mental afflictions.
5) I think I'm making some real progress here...

Monday, July 27, 2015

If The Shoe Fits

Walt Disney is renowned for many things. His kingdom of animated wonders, a legacy of creative genius, the way he'd put on the Mickey Mouse suit and insist on being called “The Commodore”... But one thing he can never take credit for is a realistic representation of his Disney Princesses.

And despite recent efforts to portray more modern and diverse heroines, the Disney Princess line-up still largely resembles Thursday night at a Tallahassee strip club.

If you were a Disney princess which one would you be?

Criticism that Disney heroines represent an exaggerated and unrealistic physical standard of beauty is well deserved considering these films are designed for an audience of 5 to 10 year olds. Just who exactly are the pouting lips, doe eyes, and heaving bosoms designed to appeal to?

I like to think I'll raise my children in the sort of open minded, accepting household where we appreciated all bodies like pow, animated and otherwise, but it does it over simplify the complex issue of women's role and representation throughout history to believe that heavier, plainer Disney Princesses are the magic bullet to liberate them from oppression, misrepresentation, and limited social opportunities?

It's a difficult issue to address when you're up against an intimidating group of Disney Princesses all in hot pursuit of their Happily Ever After (all whom strangely resemble the Mean Girls from my High School). 

In Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture Peggy Orenstein writes a, frankly contradictory, albeit updated piece, about how women can be whatever they want. Just so long as it's not too girly, not too sporty, not too feminine, not too smart, not too pretty, not too dumb, and, most importantly, not too anything they actually want to be.

I'm genuinely glad to see Disney's outdated stereotypes modernized, but I'd hate to see one set of restrictive conditions on women's conduct replaced for another. I don't think our ultimate end game should necessary be that there's every possible Disney role model a young women could relate to telling her how okay to wear glasses, like books, or play sports but that instead we should foster a society in which young women can become their own role models.   

I think Cinderella herself said it best:

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - 4th of July Edition

1) Both Thomas Jefferson and John Adams died on July 4, 1826. James Monroe also died on July 4, but in 1831.
2) Auto club AAA estimates that 41.9 million Americans will travel over the July 4th holiday, the most in eight years.
3) Calvin Coolidge was born on July 4, 1872. He also has the distinction of being the Nationals' latest Racing President.

4) The 4th of July by the numbers:
  • 14,000 — number of firework displays across the nation each year
  • 150 million — number of hot dogs eaten by Americans 
  • 9 — number of times I will drunk-dial my ex before I black out
5) This amazing firework display is from the 2012 Let Freedom Sing Fireworks Show in Nashville, Tennessee. After the 2:05 mark, you'll feel like a five-year old again.

Happy Fourth!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Leap second is a one-second adjustment that is occasionally applied to Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) in order to keep its time of day close to the mean solar time, or UT1. The next leap second will again be inserted at the end of June 30, 2015 at 23:59:60 UTC.

Trending in all areas of social media today is the thought-provoking inquiry, "What will YOU do with your #LEAPSECOND?!?!?!". 

I'm going to spend it mourning the last Twitter Trend.
But I'm not drinking the Kool-Aid at this particular dog and pony show. As if it isn't enough that we're already asked to live each hour to its fullest, spend each day like it's our last, now we're expected to account for every second we spend too. And it had better be amazing. I remember a simpler time when every iota of our day wasn't required to be as awesome as possible. It's like we can't just live we need to !!!LIVE XL!!! .

But haters gonna hate right?

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Palm Pilot

I got a palm reading the other day. I could say it was on a total whim, or that I don't really believe in that stuff, or that no baby I've never tried it before but with right guy I might be open to it, but that wouldn't be true. 

So this palm reading was not, in fact, my first foray into the occultic realm. Betw
een palm readings, tarot cards, and aura cleanings I've spend a handful of dollars hoping for a glimpse into what my romantic future might hold. And while my little brother reminds me that this money could be better spent on pretty much anything besides crack, my most recent palm reader had an insight for me that I'd never heard before. She told me I've already met my soulmate.

There wasn't a need to flip through my mental Rolodex of exes, because everyone has "the one that got away." Not got 
away due to some kind of epic relationship fall out, or his arraignment hearing, or because he finally found the key to my sex dungeon, but got away because something, something small and nameless, in the relationship didn't quite work out.

Ladies and gentleman
 I'd like to present my potential lost soulmate:

Yeah, I know, you can't tell me anything I haven't already told myself each time I renew my Match subscription. 

Okay Universe, I get it. He's very handsome. 

We were college sweethearts. He never hogged the covers and let me dance on his toes. He taught me how to how to change a timing belt and I encouraged him to run his first 5K. I made him laugh and he fielded my crazy like Joe DiMaggio. 

But it didn't work out. And looking back there wasn't anything we faced that was so insurmountable it couldn't have been overcome on our path to soulmatedom... Why do so many modern relationships end this way; with the parties citing vague and unsubstantial reasons like "things getting too serious", "timing", or "escaping from your sex dungeon"?  

So maybe he isn't my lost soulmate. Maybe you can't just lose a soulmate like a misplaced sweatshirt that turns up years later in a Goodwill Lost and Found. Maybe it's sharing our lives that's more important than our souls. After all, if Merriam-Webster doesn't recognize soulmates, I maintain there's no reason for the rest of us to. Except when dealing with angry ex-sex. Obviously.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

She Works Hard

"I'm an English major."

"What are you going to do with that?"

"Die of starvation."

Ever since college where we learned fundamental life skills like living away from home, choosing a non-Liberal Arts major, and how to shotgun a beer, I'd resigned myself to the notion that the English major's lot in life was to see the nuance and beauty in an otherwise mechanical, left-brained world, and not perhaps drive economic trends, truly understand what a hedge fund is, or say things like: "Divide my assets between my 401k and my Roth IRA," or "We don't need to find a different ATM. My balance is high enough to cover the foreign ATM fee." 

And I'm okay with that. Truly fine with the notion that what I lack in capital, I make up for in my ability to shotgun a beer. Like the Chinese philosophy yin and yang, maybe society needs its career-driven capitalist every bit as much as its hippy humanitarians. Both the "Type-A" predators with their smart, aggressive life and career decisions, and those of us who are content to bumble through job and relationship choices with all the calculating ruthlessness of a nurse shark


Monday, May 11, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - Sports Edition

1) This clip comes to you straight from my home town where minor league manager for the Asheville TouristJoe Mikulik otherwise known as "Who?", and "that assshole" loses his damn mind over a call and a game for no other reason than to show his butt and amuse you good folks. Enjoy:

2) Okay, so maybe I'm partial to my alma mater but after the below video the next person to destroy a basketball athletic program this badly was Jerry Sandusky.

3) Considered by most to be the greatest athlete of all time, his most famous commercial is titled "Failure."

The Play or The Play to Beat the Band, refers to a last-second kickoff return during a college football game between is recognized as one of the most memorable plays in college football history and among the most memorable in American sports. 

Members of the Stanford Band had come onto the field midway through the return, believing that the game was over, which added to the ensuing confusion and folklore. Cal announcer Joe Starkey of KGO-AM 810 radio called the game. The following is a transcript of his famous call:

AND THE BEARS! THE BEARS HAVE WON! The Bears have won! Oh, my God! The most amazing, sensational, dramatic, heart-rending... exciting, thrilling finish in the history of college football!

5) If you haven't heard of The Miracle on Ice than your heart is probably made of it. A group of rag tag American hockey players rallied to win Gold over the Russians, who play the villains in nine out of ten Olympic movies. Team USA's performance eked out a slim 4-3 lead which they clung to for the final 10 minutes. But it was Sportscaster Al Michaels, who was calling the game on ABC, who delivered his famous call:

"11 seconds, you've got 10 seconds, the countdown going on right now! Morrow, up to Silk. Five seconds left in the game. Do you believe in miracles?! YES!!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - Part X

1) A digital footprint is the data that is left behind by users on digital services. It's often referred to by my perverted neighbor as an "electronic snitch."
2) When
 people see something adorable, like a baby or a puppy, our typical response is to associate it as something edible (e.g. I want to munch those little feet right off). We relate cuteness to dopamine-inducing scent, reminding us of food. The overlapping senses unconsciously create the desire to put cute things in our mouths. 
I could just eat them on toast
3) This video explains why Fight Club just might be the greatest movie ever. It also breaks the first two rules of Fight Club.
4) One of Google's 30 Most Epic Doodle's, is a tribute to Jackson Pollock's famous and unique style of drip painting. Or it's one of those three-D stereograms, but I've been staring at it for five hours now and so far nothing.
5) I'm not saying saying my Mother's Day Card is better than yours. I'm just repeating what she said in the shower this morning! 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Miracle Question

If you've ever read anything about business, studied for the GMAT, or drank myself into a blackout at my friend's grad school party last week, you might have heard a little something about two emerging but contrasting business ideologies: problem-focused and solution-focused

A stagnant economy, struggling enterprise, and diminishing middle-class give business theology about as much corporate credibility as pixie dust. And in all likelihood, 95% of board meeting run much like this:

But I digress. To be "solution-focused" is to ignore the cause, details, and nuances of your problem and concentrate your efforts on a remedy, resolution, and positive outcome. To be "problem-focused" is to ignore said potential solutions and concentrate your efforts on "Bats! Bats! Dear God how did all these bats get in here?!?!"

Solution-Focused Therapy credits The Miracle QuestionA basic thought experiment, its premise is simple: one night a miracle has occurred. All the problems in your world that would normally preoccupy your time and energy have magically been resolved. When you awaken the next morning, what's the very first thing, however tiny, or insignificant, that you notice or experience which lets you know this miracle has occurred? 

Anyone else's miracle involve Alec Baldwin giving this pep talk 
as they get ready for work each morning?

The Miracle Question doesn't promise to make our decisions for us, but what it will do is remind us that we already have the answers we've been seeking. It rewires our thinking to ignore the flood of distractions that, say, a hectic 1990s life holds. When left to their own devices, these thoughts monopolize the entirety of your mental process and keep you trapped in a perpetual problem-focused cycle.

In his infamous Glenngarry Glen Ross speech Alec Baldwin is sent to motivate a sluggish, lackadaisical team whose sales numbers have plummeted. They bombard him with excuse after excuse, some valid, some not, for why their business is slow and why both the company and their lives are not succeeding. His response? Fuck you.

What is it about this rebuttal that makes so much sense? Well, for one, it was made in 1992 and everyone was doing wheelbarrows of cocaine, but also because when we finally ignore the endless subterfuge of failure and laser in on those rare, singular moments of success which exist, sometimes for just moments, outside our mountains of modern problems, we find our solutions, our resolutions, the lights at the end of the bat filled tunnels.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - Part IX

1) After spending an amount of time researching Jack the Ripper, I will describe only as "too much," I've concluded his identity: Aaron Kosminski. You're welcome. Now, can someone give my therapist Dr. T. Bear a ring?

2) Is this the way to Amarillo

3) The three most common types of poker are stud, draw and community card. Texas hold 'em is the most popular of the community card versions, owing its popularity to the highly televised, internet sensation World Series of Poker Lady Gaga.
4) I end each day with a gentle Guided Meditation by Lilen Eden to meet my Spirit Guides. They haven't offered much as far as guidance, and sure Greg still owes me $50 but the benefits of mediation has been shown to red
uce stress, restore memory, and increase cognitive function. He had this bank thing happen, it was weird, but he gets paid next Friday and he'll get me then.

5) Swiss Guard, Italian Guardia Svizzera, corps of Swiss soldiers are responsible for the safety of the pope. Historically, new recruits had to have been unmarried Roman Catholic males with Swiss citizenship, between 19 and 30 years of age, at least 5 feet 8 inches and able to dress faaaabulous!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Mental Health Mullet

Having a mental illness sucks. It sucks so badly, I'm literally forced to pay people [psychiatrist, therapist] to talk to me about it. Everyone else is four sentences away from realizing they have something less uncomfortable to do. 

As a society we've broken through many gender, racial and religious barriers, so why is it that when it comes to the the stigma of mental illness, we're still a slave to the rubber stamp and it's arbitrary "crazy" or "sane" label? 

I've found that it isn't necessarily mental illness itself that is so wildly unlikable, it's the way mental illness makes other people feel. Mental illnesses are....strange and different. Tell me that you have cancer and I'll understand how to appropriately react. I know not to ask if you could beat your cancer if you would just try a little harder or secretly think you have cancer just for attention.     

Imagine telling someone with cancer that "Hey guy, it could be so much worse, you could be bipolar or have schizophrenia. You could struggle with depression or experience persistent anxiety.". But tell someone you're bipolar, and you not only relinquish any sympathy and/or basic empathy you'd normally garner from having an illness, it also give strangers the green light to ask you weird questions:

"So, do you have multiple personalities?"

"Aren't you like really good in bed?"

"Can you fly?"

No, yes, and sometimes.     

Mental health issues still weirds people out, which frankly, pisses me off. Because thanks to the combined efforts of three different mood stabilizers, suddenly, I'm the sanest person I know. And when it comes to psychological wellness, I've discovered the average person wears a mental health mullet: normal in the front, fucking cuckoo bananas crazy lunatic in the back.

They don't know they're crazy

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Boring Work Days and Me: 5 Things I've Learned Before 5:00pm - Part VIII

1) The final scene from The Pursuit of Happyness. I'm not crying, I'm just allergic to heart warming inspiration.
To "show your butt" is a Southern idiom meaning to figuratively show one's backside by acting rudely, crassly, or inappropriately. To do so literally, is still just called Title 25 § 11.408.
3) On April 18, 1924, Francis Leavy, a firefighter, was cleaning a window when he suddenly announced that he might die that day. Moments later the fire department responded to a raging fire that claimed the lives of nine fireman including Leavy. Soon after, a handprint appeared on the very window Leavy had been washing the day of his death.
4) Shave and a Haircut....

5)  How many Freudian analysts does it take to change a light bulb?
Two. One to change it, and the other to hold the penis. LADDER. I MEANT LADDER!! (I didn't mean ladder.)

Monday, March 9, 2015

Sicilian Defense

I used to play online chess. Don't judge me. I got pretty good at it too. I said no judgement!! Really good actually. At least...according to my computer. The trick, was to master each game, step by step, move by move. But if there was any deviation in the sequence, I'd either lose or have to start the game again. 

Looking back, I actually wasn't good—as defined by the USCF—at chess at all, I'd merely developed the appearance of aptitude through a combination of classical conditioning and memory. And compared to what other members of the animal kingdom have accomplished with similar memorization based skill-sets, my chess game has been found wanting.   

But it made me think about the various skills we acquire and master throughout the years. Just how do we differentiate which skills we consider to be valid or successful from those that, like my chess ranking, are simply illusory?

You could point to commercial or financial achievement as indicators of success if history weren't full of artists and inventors whose astonishing talent went unappreciated in their time. Vincent van Gogh committed suicide a penniless hack at thirty-seven, while there have been three separate installments of the Sharknado franchise.

So in my search for the definition of success, I poured myself a glass of wine, downloaded the old chess program and committed to mastering the Sicilian Defense, a counter move that Chess Grandmaster John Nunn praises for "its combative nature; in many lines Black is playing not just for equality, but for the advantage...."  

I learned a lot that night. That black begins every chess game at a disadvantage. A perpetual underdog, who must play smarter, think further ahead, make fewer mistakes, just to level the playing field. That I can drink a full bottle of wine before I blackout. 

And finally the elusive true measure of success: "Success isn't how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started." ~Steve Prefontaine

Monday, March 2, 2015

Delphic Maxim

When I turned 30 and received my key to the kingdom of relationship insightsyou'll know more when you get there, I'm not really supposed to talk about itI finally understood why so many people spend their twenties in relationships where they're less liked than Gwyneth Paltrow.

Our twenties are quite possibly the worst time to seek out a romantic partner. When we're in our twenties, we are actually terrible judges of our own character. But ask any twenty-something and they'll tell you how they're smarter than the average person. And harder working. More mature and pragmatic. Less likely to panic in a crisis. And a better driver.

But by thirty, both you and your potential mate, will have had a few real world experiences under your belt to give you a better sense of the person you truly are. By thirty, it's likely you've dealt with a profound personal or professional setback; or the death of a loved one; or a serious health issue; or been dishonorably discharged from your position as office safety monitor because following 
the 2011 earthquake rather than lead a group of lawyers to safety, you ran for the hills to save yourself while shouting, "I'll see the rest of you in hell!"

Once you've established this heightened sense of self, your dating sensor becomes equally honed and highly sophisticated. Sorta like that computer screen lens thing the Terminator used. 

You're able to instantly analyze the data received from a potential dating partner and calculate the likelihood of a successful union. For example:

Hipster skinny jeans + PBR + misuse of irony

Popped collar polo shirt + hair gel + douchey sense of entitlement

Suit and tie + piercing blue eyes + aura of education + demonstrates basic empathy towards others 

*Wham Wham* Sorry about that.

It will still occasionally malfunction. Which I tried to explain to that judge, but he went ahead and charged me with eleven counts of lewd conduct anyway.