Tuesday, June 30, 2009

25 Things I Should Be Ashamed Of

I'm not gonna pin this list on a figurative brother. I'll man up and claim these as my own:

-At one point in my life, I knew every line from Jim Carrey's smash-hit comedy, "The Mask."

-I have blamed my gas on my sleeping son.

-I owned Lou Bega's album, "A Little Bit of Mambo."

-I'm horrible at guessing movie plot twists. I didn't guess the ending to "The Sixth Sense", "The Usual Suspects", or "Who Framed Roger Rabbit."

-I don't know who my congressman is.

-Even though I shouldn't like them, I like Eminem, Kid Rock, and the smell of gasoline.

-I fell for the "updog" joke in eighth grade.

-I am 6'3" and weigh 270 pounds, but I am an excellent dancer. I can even do "The Worm." I will never prove this to anyone.

-I have an extensive collection of sports cards.

-I've gotten nine traffic tickets and two warnings.

-I have no idea what the difference is between mayonnaise and Miracle Whip. But I will argue with people about which is better just for fun. I do the same with butter and margarine.

-I have used the same kind of deodorant for 10 years.

-I have a favorite elevator at my office building.

-I think fireworks are stupid, boring, and pointless.

-When I see someone fall down, my first instinct is to laugh. My second is to look for a fellow onlooker to laugh with. My third is to wonder if the person is alright.

-I lost my bowling ball. I have no idea where it is. How do you lose a 14-lb. black stone with your name on it?

-I have cried while watching a reality TV show.

-I saw Destiny's Child in concert.

-I saw New Kids on the Block in concert.

-I have an English degree, but I can't name any books I finished in college besides the Harry Potter series.

-I have never beaten Super Mario Brothers from the original Nintendo.

-I have an English degree because the day I had to decide on a major, I was three blocks away from the Political Science office and one floor away from the English office.

-It's bothering me that the title of this post ends with a preposition.

-Taco Bell is one of my favorite places to eat.

-I don't trust short people who are really quiet.

Monday, June 29, 2009

"It's about to pop! I can't stand it!"

I hung out with my older brother this weekend. We had cinnamon rolls and watched reality TV. So I was watching him open one of those tubes of cinnamon rolls from the grocery store. They’re the kind in the refrigerated section that are kept under just enough pressure to pop open when you peel back the label. Opening one of those is like watching a toddler bite a balloon. You know it’s about to pop and scare the living daylights out of somebody, but you don’t know when it’s gonna happen. So you can’t really prepare properly. You have that frozen grimace on your face for like ten minutes. Like this....

There’s really no way to prepare for it. And when it happens, you look like a super-wuss because it's just a little noise. I bet they could use that as a torture device on terrorists.

So we got to watching our reality TV and we noticed that whenever they show someone, they always put their first name and either their hometown or their job on the screen. I saw one woman on the show where it said, “Morgan” and underneath that, it said “Magician’s Assistant.” Wouldn’t it have been less embarrassing for her if they had just put “Unemployed”?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Excellent Points

Sometimes I hear myself my older brother make a good point. You know... those brilliant, witty quips that intelligent comedians make.

Just some things to think about:

“If you pick your nose after using peanut butter, you get a pleasant olfactory surprise.”

“When will Dippin' Dots finally replace cartons of ice cream? They've been 'The Ice Cream of the Future' since 1988.”

“Segways do not belong on elevators.”

“Chicks dig scars. Just not emotional scars.”

“The makers of Neosporin are either liars who fake finger injuries to sell their product or (more shockingly) they are cutting children’s fingers in identical places to verify the reduction of scarring. Either way, I don’t trust them anymore.”

“People who use the word ‘pretentious’, most likely are.”

“Mexican people who eat at American restaurants probably think to themselves, ‘Why does all this music sound the same?”

“People who buy a vowel and then immediately solve the puzzle are stupid.”

This is not real.

For April Fools' Day this year, my wife... I mean, my younger sister decided to prank me... I mean my older brother. Oh, forget it. My wife decided to prank me. That in and of itself is astounding for two reasons. One, she generally doesn't subscribe to that kind of childish (and awesome) activity. And two, she knows how hard it is to convince me of something ridiculous. Well this year she went for it, and I must say she got me better than anyone has ever gotten me.

Now before I begin the setup, I need to reiterate the statement in the post title. What she did was not real. It was just very convincing.

I came home from work to find the bathroom door slightly ajar and the light on. Our two young children were fast asleep for nap time, and my wife was upstairs. So I went to turn out the light and something caught my eye. My two-year old son's training potty had something on it. So I turned the light back on and opened the door all the way. What I found was shocking and disgusting. Let me run you through my thoughts....

Wow, what a long day at work. I am so glad to finally be at home with my beautiful family. What's this? The bathroom door is open and light is coming out. I bet someone forgot to turn out the light. I'll be a helper and turn it off. Click. Alright, now where did I ... wait. What was that? Click. Is that... how did it... but who would... AAAHHH! Did my son do this? Why wouldn't she clean it up? Does she want me to clean it? Wait... was it my son or was it her? I hear the shower running.... Did this just happen and she's cleaning herself off?! Why would she have done this?! It can't have been her!

By now you've probably guessed what I found in the bathroom. And if you said "chocolate torpedo" then you're correct. And it looked like this:

I freaked out. I was so convinced it was a real "chunky dunk" (wouldn't you be?) that I ignored the logic that suggested it wasn't. First of all, my wife is the type of person that would vacuum, sweep, mop, and dust everyday if she could. So as disgusting as the real thing would have been, she would have cleaned it immediately for fear of stains, bugs, smells, and a surprise visit from a snobby friend. Secondly, my son could not have smeared and moved the offending "mass" without my wife's knowledge. He would have had dirty hands, and she would have noticed. So my logical side processed that much of the information, and I immediately concluded that the offender was my wife. And yes... in hindsight, that makes even less sense.

I can't imagine how foolish I looked bounding up the stairs and barging into our bathroom to determine if my wife had suddenly merged incontinence with insanity. The moment I came in the bathroom, she started laughing. So my insanity suspicions were confirmed. In my mind, the woman I've known for 7 years and the mother of my children had lost her ability (or willingness) to control her bowel movements, had decided that the proper response to the situation was to "spread the wealth", and had laughed at my understandable horror. I could have cried. But she quickly explained away the horror. My wife is not certifiably insane. I am just an idiot.

Apparently, my wife has a penchant for creating recipes for "inedible chocolate pudding". She mixed flour, cocoa, and water. And just for effect, she added diced peaches from a fruit cup. So if anyone out there needed a recipe for a "giant tootsie roll"... there you go.

Needless to say, I will never again assume that my wife is too good for April Fooling. However, I will have an elaborate, panic attack-inducing scenario planned as revenge.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Restaurant Etiquette

I can't go out to eat with my older brother anymore. And here's why:

He uses the waiter's first name like they're old pals.

"Tom! We're gonna need some more bread over here. Thanks, old pal!"

He also likes to tell the waitstaff that the entire party of 12 is ready to order as soon as we sit down, even if we haven't opened our menus and we're still wrestling toddlers into high chairs.

"Well, Tom, I'm glad you asked. I'll have a Diet Coke. And keep 'em comin' two at a time. I'm a heavy Diet Coke drinker. And I think we're ready to order even though you haven't passed out all the menus yet. The other side will be ready by the time you get there if you begin over here. I'll start!"

He apparently cannot answer with a simple "yes" or "no".

"Well, Tom, an appetizer does sound delicious. I'm a big fan of sliced, fried onion, after all! Who doesn't like a 7 dollar coronary disease guarantee? But I think the general consensus for our little group here today is going to be that we're not quite in the mood to try any of the wonderful-sounding appe-'teasers' this lovely evening."

He makes a point to fix other people's orders (even if the recipient is fine with it). And he requests their refills for them.

"Tom! Sorry to bother you while you're carrying three trays of hot fajitas, but my younger brother over here could really use another Diet Coke. He's positively parched. And I'm pretty sure my sister-in-law asked for no tomatoes on her hamburger. As you can see, there's one on the plate next to the bun."

Pretty much the only reason I go is because he's started paying for my family's meals. But even that has its downfalls. Without fail, he offers to pay for every person at dinner and insists that people get whatever they want, only to forget how math works by the time the check arrives. So after ten minutes of looking at his receipt and remembering who had what, he picks on the two highest numbers on the list.

"Well Taylor, I hope you enjoyed that cheeseburger. I've never had one worth 11 dollars before. It must have been great. And I can't believe they charge this much for catfish, person-next-to-me. Are these famous catfish or something?"

I can even deal with all of that every once in a while. But he crossed the line last week. It was just him and me at a burger joint, and we had an "effeminate" waiter. Now, most married men will do everything in their power to solidify their hetero status in the presence of someone other than hetero. But not my older brother. He decided it would be appropriate to wink at him while making a joke. So that made my hetero status questionable. And I couldn't act upset, because then I'd look like the jealous half of a couple. I guess the good part is we got a free hamburger. But my older brother got a phone number I hope he never uses.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


First off:
I don't have any older brothers. I have a younger brother and an older sister. But I needed a way to anonymously tell stories about people in my life without starting every post with, "Someone I know...."

So from henceforth, my older brother is everybody, nobody, and anybody... all at the same time. He can be a coworker, stranger, friend, or enemy. Most often, he will be my younger brother or my father. They give me too much material. And you know what? It could even be me. And if gender is important to the story, I will refer to my younger sister. And for those not paying attention... no, I do not have a younger sister.