Thursday, September 11, 2014

Full Circle

Yesterday, as I was driving home in the rain, with the window cracked, a familiar scent entered the vehicle.  I can't tell you where it came from but the distinctive smell of fried fair food came wafting in.  I had to laugh, for in that moment, I was reminded of how history repeats itself.

The excitement as we waited for the bus was barely contained.  The adults stopped trying to calm us down a half hour before.  We weren't hurting anyone, we were just loud.  It was a Saturday, we were up before the sun, it was raining and cold, and we were enjoying all of it. 

This was the day of our class trip to the local amusement park.   Many of us had been to the park before but this was the first time we were being turned loose, all on our own, we only had to check in at lunch time.  Otherwise, we were free to roam and what big plans we had.

I had been to amusement parks before but I'd never ridden a roller coaster.  From the conversations going on, I was the only one who hadn't.  I didn't tell anyone about my lack of experience.  I just cheered along with how much fun we were going to have.

I did not want to ride any damn roller coaster.  I'm afraid of heights!  But, my girlfriend was on the trip as well.  The beautiful Serena wanted me to ride the rides with her and there was no way I was going to let her think me a coward.  I'd suck it up and just do it.

When we got to the park it was deserted.  The park was open but the rain was keeping everyone else away but since there was no lightening, all the rides were open.  We had the whole place to ourselves, to roam free.  Serena grabbed my hand and led me straight to the entrance to the park's wooden roller coaster.  We went up the ramp and found no line.  There was no turning back so I climbed aboard, pulled the safety strap across my lap, and waited for the long slow climb to the top.

By the end of the day, I had rode every ride I could several times.  On many of the coaster, we didn't even have to leave the car to ride a second time, there were literally no people waiting to ride it.  We ate fried dough and jelly beans of every possible flavor, and cookies and all the things our mothers would have told us no to.  And we laughed.  A lot. 

I conquered a fear that day and found a new love of roller coasters that day and I owe it all to my desperate desire to impress a girl.

My new job scares the hell out of me.  Not the job itself but leaving what I knew to do something I've never done.  I'm fairly confident in my ability to do the job but I am a creature of habit and while I've been wanting to make a change, a little part of me was always relieved when plans fell through. 

I could have lived my life the way it was.  I would have survived.  But, there is this girl, woman actually, that I desperately want to impress.  I want her to be proud of me, I want her to smile at her fearless jackass of a husband.  And so, I climbed aboard the coaster, pulled the strap across my lap, and waited for the long slow climb to the top. 

The wind, the rain, the smell of fried foods and the desire to impress the woman in my life, things weren't as unfamiliar as they may have seemed. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Don't Feed the Monkey

I did something today that I don't normally do.  When I read something that really irritated me, instead of just sounding off here, I went to the source. 

As I was reading the news this morning, I came across an article about how CVS pharmacies will stop selling cigars and cigarettes a month ahead of schedule.  You see, tobacco is bad for you and CVS wants to make America healthier.  I understand that tobacco use is not good for you.  And I really have no issue with CVS not selling tobacco products.  What I do have an issue with is their bullshit reasoning for not selling tobacco products.  

So, I hit their Facebook page and wrote, "I read you've stopped selling cigarettes because they are bad for people. Kudos to you. Now, how long until you stop selling soda, junk food, and drugs with side effects like suicide and death?"  Fully expecting them to ignore me, I went about my day.  15 minutes later, they replied to me. 

"Hi Frank, thanks for connecting with us. Unlike alcohol and other products which are okay in moderation, no amount of tobacco use is safe. Because smoking is the leading cause of illness and death in the US, we're taking this stand to help create a healthier America. We hope you'll support our decision!"

First of all, why would you even respond to an obviously sarcastic comment from someone with a cartoon monkey as their profile picture?  Secondly,  being anti-tobacco doesn't stop them from blowing smoke up people's asses, must be that healthy marijuana smoke so popular these days.  Tobacco bad, pot good!  

I honestly have no issue with them not selling cigarettes at their stores.  I believe in the free market, if they don't want to sell cigarettes, more power to them.  But don't site health concerns as the reason when you are going to keep selling products that lead to diabetes, liver disease, heart disease, and instant death.  They made this decision because being anti-smoking is popular.  Being anti-soda, anti-junk food, or anti-psychotic prescriptions drugs won't get you the same publicity.  

Don't tell me you're concerned for the health of Americans when you sell products that list heart attack and stroke as side effects.  Don't tell me you're concerned for the health of Americans when you're still making money off junk food.  Don't tell me you're concerned for the health of Americans when you're selling alcohol.  None of those items are good for you.  They are unhealthy, you hypocritical dickholes. 

I get it, Americans are largely fucking retarded and will happily sing your praises for being lying sacks of anti-smoking shit.  And good for you for exploiting their stupidity.  But, in the future, when the sarcastic guy with the monkey picture calls you out on your bullshit, just walk away.  It's quite unhealthy for me to be this annoyed by your blatant fucktardedness.  And isn't my health, as an American, your primary concern?  

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Parents Suck

There is gonna be some hardcore generalizations thrown out in this post.  Let's state right now that there are exceptions to every rule and be done with it.  With that out of the way...

Gen X and Millennials suck and it's the Baby Boomer's fault.  Now, I wasn't just sitting around think about how my generation and the one following us suck, I read this article about it.  The author nails the headline, "If millennials are jerks, blame the baby boomers."  Right on!  But then I read the article and this guy is a fuckin moron.  No offense to morons.

According to this guy, millennials, people aged 19-34, are lazy and it's because the baby boomers raised the debt and increased the pay gap between CEOs and average workers.  He doesn't explain how those two things made this generation lazy, he just states it as fact.  I told you, he's a fucking moron.  Simply a case of a blind squirrel finding a nut and having no idea how he got it.

The last couple of years, a popular conversation at work with many different people has been how lazy young workers are these days.  I don't see it myself.  I've seen my generation, I don't think millennials are all that different.  We're a bunch of spoiled, lazy, arrogant, thin skinned whiners.

Here's how spoiled my generation is, right now, there are protests being planned of fast food restaurants because people believe they should be making $15/hour for working in fast food.  I'm not disparaging fast food.  My first job was working at McDonald's.  It's stressful, bitchy customers combined with penny pinching owners just sucks.  It is noble work that no one should be ashamed to do.  What it isn't, is a job worth $15/hour.  Almost anyone can learn to do it.  That's not an insult to fast food workers, it's just a fact.  It's a very low skill job.

But someone told these people they are worth more and dammit, they are going to protest about it.  And therein lies the problem.  Baby boomers filled my generation with bullshit self esteem and coddled the fuck out of us and now we wouldn't know hard work if it bit us in our tanning bed tanned asses.   And my generation took that worthless self esteem and coddling and turned parenting into a fucking fetish.

One of the biggest mistakes was in getting rid of losers.  Kids aren't allowed to lose anymore, might make them feel bad about themselves.  Learning to lose is an important part of growing up.  It teaches us our strengths and weaknesses as well as giving us something to strive for.  Is it any wonder these folks have no ambition when you taught them that ambition is a bad thing?

Another horrific mistake is the rise of bullying.  Not real bullying, mind you.  Any hint of criticism, no matter how valid, is now bullying.  Any difference of opinion is now bullying.  In fact, nothing hurts more than words so everything said to a child has to be full of bullshit...errr...affirmation.

Two things, a 2x4 launched from a car tire you're trying to get unstuck from the snow hitting you in the shin  hurts more than any words that have ever been spoken.  That is a fact.  More importantly, by protecting kids from reality, you're teaching them that they have worth they don't actually possess.  One day, they will enter the real world with a boss that has expectations that have to be met and your little darling is going to fail.  And it's your fault.

I know this one will cause some hearts to begin bleeding but perhaps the biggest mistake of all has been turning to drugs to discipline our children.  Or, more accurately, turning to drugs instead of disciplining our children.  When I was 5 or so, I threw a rock at my brother and knocked him off a fence.  My mother didn't take me to the doctor and exclaim she didn't know what to do about my behavioral problems.  She beat my ass.  I may have done many other stupid things but I never threw a rock at my brother again.

Not every behavioral issue deserves a spanking but some of them absolutely do.  Yes, it might hurt your child's feelings for a few minutes but it's better than trying to drug them into acting right.

Which leads me to my final issue, not every behavioral problem is a psychological disorder.  Sometimes it's just kids being kids.  As parents, these are the times we should guide our children, not make excuses for them because we're too fucking cowardly to admit our rug rat isn't perfect.

If you raise your children with a false sense of self worth, the absolute thinnest of skin, no ability to cope with losing, and no idea what consequences are, you really can't blame them if they turn into exactly the little douchebag you raised them to be. 

It's What's on the Inside That Counts and This Chick is Screwed

I don't blame you if you don't follow this link.  It's "An Open Letter To A Guy Who Told Me I Was 'Obviously Not Athletic' At A Wedding."  I was link hopping today and somehow found myself reading it. It's not a bad piece, shallow, insecure, and a bit hypocritical but not horrible writing.

Here's the short version, a woman went to a wedding with her man and one of his friends, who was drunk, told her that she was obviously not athletic, that her man doesn't seem to care if a woman is athletic but that he does.  And it ruined her life.  Ok, that's a slight exaggeration.  It's just been weighing on her mind and upset her enough to have written this piece.  She had felt pretty until that comment and dammit, he shouldn't have said that!!!!!

Ok, first off, the guy is a drunk asshole.  And yes, he's likely an asshole when he hasn't been drinking.  Which only begs the question, who cares what a drunk asshole says?

Women, when will you learn?  You're the ones that spend all your time preaching about how the inside matters but you are so superficial when it comes to yourselves.  This guy didn't tell her she was so dumb he wasn't sure how she remembered to breathe, he said she obviously wasn't athletic.  Hell, that's not even calling her fat.  It's barely an insult.

It's really hard to look at this objectively and not walk away thinking this woman is very shallow.  How other people see her is quite a big deal to her.  Her self esteem was shattered by this.  Thing is, it's not just her, a lot of women are this way.  Read the comments over there or ask a woman in your life if you don't believe me.

I've often wondered why women are so sensitive about their appearance.  I'm told it's because society tells them they have to look a certain way, actresses are all thin and made up and blah blah blah.

Here's the hard truth, if you care so much about personal appearance that a drunk stranger can ruin not only your night but your life for a few weeks, you are an incredibly shallow person.  It's not TVs fault.  It's not the media's fault.  It's not even the fault of the asshole that made the rude remark.  It's a fault in you that you need to address. 

This isn't about growing a thicker skin, though this woman should work on that as well, it's about defining worth by how someone looks.  This guy might have judged her based on her appearance but she did the same thing to herself and to him.  She let the comment get to her because she puts such a high value on appearance.

I don't find her unattractive because she isn't athletic, I find her unattractive because she's so shallow and superficial. 

News You Don't Care About But Should

It's one of those rare days where I am inspired to write.  Tonight you get not one, not two, but three brand new posts!  Exciting, I know.  To kick it off, you get this very general post about the goings on in Monkeyland.

First things first, a friend of mine has started a blog with a friend of his.  It's a football blog but it's a good read even if you don't follow the game.  Check out The First-Round Punter and send the link to all the football fans in your life.

In other news, I will be starting a new job on the 8th.  It's not like I blog a lot now but I will be spending 3 hours a day driving so my time may be more limited.  On the other hand, long drives are how my blogging started, as my mind wanders on those trips, who knows, I may just become inspired.

Our cat died.  He was a stray that wandered in and just kinda stayed.  I've never met a stray cat that was so lovable and sweet.  Yes, I'm a large manly man telling you about the loss he feels over a cat.  Gonna miss that fluffball. 

Finally, my wife got me sick. While I intend to write two more posts, we'll see if I can actually swing it as I am in horrible pain from coughing so much.

Now, go read my friend's blog while I start my next post.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Monkey Opinion Time

I was asked my opinion of this picture on Friday and this is the first chance I've had to sit down and give that opinion.  Here's a hint, I named this picture "bullshit" when I resized it for this page.

On first glance, it seems very sweet, endearing even.

We're going to start at the bottom.  All over Facebook you can read about what makes a man a real man.  Typically it involves taking care of a woman, not cheating on your woman, doing whatever your woman tells you to do.  All of it is bullshit.  Despite the term, what makes a man real is entirely subjective within this context.  It's generally used when a woman is upset with her man and wants to belittle him, something no real man would tolerate.

So let's just dispense with this real man crap, including what a real man's love looks like.  In case you missed it, the final line of this basically says gay men aren't real men, something some folks might agree with but again, it's entirely subjective.

Moving on to the list of what defines a man's true love for a woman....

Is more concerned with spending time than money.  Nonsense.  Truly loving has both nothing and everything to do with both time and money.  It's giving of yourself for the other person's happiness.  It can be about time or money, both or neither.  It's thinking of the other person and acting to make them happy because their happiness matters to you.

Is her leader not her dictator.  Come join us in the 21st century.  I am not my wife's leader.  There are issues I take the lead on but there are just as many that she takes the lead on.  We are a partnership.

Does not cheat because he knows he'd be cheating himself.  This is just stupid.  You don't remain faithful because you'd be cheating yourself.  You remain faithful out of respect.  I'm really getting the feeling that this guy is more in love with himself than whatever woman is unfortunate enough to be with this asshat.

Gives her freedom, not captivity.  Her freedom isn't yours to give, fucktard.

Encourages her dreams while chasing his.  Everything's about him.  Why not just encourage her dreams?  What the fuck do your dreams have to do with encouraging hers?  This guy needs to get over himself.

Shows her off to the world because her light in his life is so bright he can't hide it.  The fuck?  Wow, one sentence with so much stupidity that it actually caused me to pause.  Gonna need a few paragraphs for this shit.

We men do like to show off the ladies willing to love us but it's not a sign of love.  It's just our egos.  And it's ok for it to be our egos as long as we don't bullshit about our motives.  As civilized as we may be, we're still men.  We like having a beautiful woman on our arm.  We may love her but we are showing off that we landed a hottie, that she loves us, not the other way around.

"Her light in his life" is just poetic bullshit hoping to make women drop their panties.

"So bright he can't hide it"....why the fuck would you want to hide it?  You finally finding a woman willing to fuck you that you aren't ashamed to be seen with in public is still your ego, not love, you shallow cunt.

Women, you gotta stop falling for nonsense like this.  It's presented as though the man is making sacrifices when the reality is, it's all about him and his overly inflated ego.  It's presented as though a woman should be thankful to have a man like this when the reality is, he's a douche. 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Love is

And now on to something still serious just a little less controversial.

A link to an article titled 10 Definitive Ways To Tell You're In Love With The Right Someone ended up in my Facebook feed.  A friend liked it from someone else and Facebook's algorithms being as good as they are, they thought I'd like it.  Apparently Facebook is really good at math but sucks at reading.

I want to dive right in and tell you all the fucktarded nonsense contained in the article but we have to stop first at the title.  Why?  Because it doesn't fit the story.  It's not a list of 10 ways to tell you're in love with the right someone.  It's 10 ways to know you kinda like someone.  Not the right someone.  Just someone.

#1  They are the best part of your day.

.....Romanticized bullshit.  I love my wife dearly but there are days that a chocolate chip cookie is the best part of my day.  There are days my wife has made me miserable and there are days I've done the same to her.  We're people and sometimes people, even ones you love with all your heart, will just not get along.  We may not always be the best part of each others day but we still want to see each other tomorrow.  That's love.

#2  The first person you think about.

...More romanticized bullshit.  And it's an outright lie.  I guarantee if you dream of being chased through a dark forest by an axe wielding Bozo the Clown, the first person you're going to think about when you wake up is Bozo, not your significant other.  Our minds go to weird places, it has nothing to do with how much you love someone.

#3  Prioritize above your own needs.

....irrelevant.  If your significant other is the only person you ever prioritize over yourself, you're a selfish dick and I feel sorry for your "right someone" when the shine wears off and you revert to your normal douchey state.

#4  You'd do anything.

...Bullshit misuse of the language in an attempt to sound romantic.

#5  You are never afraid to express your feelings in public.

In this case, the author waxes poetic about how he wants to tell everyone that she's his girl, not like them other bitches he's been afraid to be seen in public with!  Ok, that's a paraphrase but how pathetic can you get.  "Oh no, someone might think this chick I've been banging since March is in some kind of relationship with me!"  That's not a sign of love, it's another sign of what a douche you are to most people.

#6  You love the imperfections

This may be the worst of all.  He's not talking about the annoying way his girlfriend laughs through her nose or chews with her mouth open.  This shallow twit is talking about her appearance.  While him settling for less than perfection is quite noble, again, what kind of douche says, "honey, on most women I'd find that disgusting but since I love you, I'm ok with your beard."  How'd you like to be this guy's muse?  (I don't know if she really has a beard, he doesn't actually list her flaws, just states that she has imperfections.)

#7 You think long term

In this one, his explanation tells us, again I'm paraphrasing, that for now he's not looking to bang anyone else because it might mess up his chances with the bearded lady. 

#8 You become a better person

Judging by what I've read so far, this isn't a very high bar for this guy. 

#9  Your feelings are unconditional

He's misusing the words again. I'd bet my lunch money his feelings would change drastically if he came home and found his bearded woman banging his neighbor.  "Unconditional love" is one of those things many people say but few actually consider them meaning of.  "I love you as long as you don't fuck everyone you meet" is  conditional.

#10  Your love is your best friend.

If it weren't for the rest of this shit, I'd almost give him this one. My wife is one of my very best friends.

The problem with this list, not counting the author's obvious character flaws, is that most of it has nothing to do with love.  These are all signs that a restraining order may be in your future.

Real love with the right someone endures, from the fiery passionate beginnings to the boring nights on the couch watching reruns of a show neither of you really like, from jealousy and misunderstanding to the make up sex, love endures.  When you find that, then you know you are in love with the right someone.

I Don't Care

Late February, 1990.  We were watching television when a knock came that changed our world.  My older brother had hung himself with his apron in a bathroom at the fast food restaurant where he worked.  I heard my father's moan of horror when he was given the news.  Not 6 months earlier he had signed the order to remove his wife, my mother, from life support.  That sound, that awful sound, was a soul shattering into a million pieces.  That sound, that awful sound, was the birth of a million nightmares.

It took my father nearly a decade to recover from that moment.  He did his best to drown himself at the bottom of a bottle, a barely functioning heart broken alcoholic with 2 teen aged boys to care for. He did the best he could and I don't judge him for how he dealt with the losses he suffered.

My brother, well, he can rot in hell.  Don't get me wrong.  I love him.  I'd give almost anything just to sit and shoot the shit for an hour with him.  To tell him how my life turned out, to introduce him to the sister in law, niece, and nephews he never met.  To hug him and tell him I loved him and to beg him not to do what he did.

He didn't care enough about me to stick around and see those things for himself.

Now, the touchy feely crowd will tell me that he was in pain, that I can't know what he was going through, that he did what he thought he had to do, that in his mind he had no choice.  And to the touchy feely crowd I say, go fuck yourselves.  Sincerely.

Suicide is the ultimate selfish act.  It's telling everyone that knows you that you do not care about them.  Nothing is more important than you.  And I'm supposed to have empathy for those without any?  Fuck that.  Why should I give a damn that wasn't given for me?

Spare me your psychobabble "depression is the silent killer" bullshit.  Sitting around feeling sorry for yourself isn't a disease, it's a behavior.  And instead of telling people to get over themselves, the touchy feely crowd enables these douche nuggets.  "Poor you, I hope you get better."  Fuck that, I hope you get the chance to experience real despair.  I hope you are on an airplane that goes down over Somalia and you're the only survivor on a plane everyone thinks was a total loss.  Then you can be depressed.  Until then, suck it up.

"But Frank, they can't help it."

Of course they can, they just won't because they have enabling fucktards like you telling them it's ok to be a miserable dick.  You're telling them that sitting around feeling sorry for themselves is acceptable behavior, up to and including if it means taking their own life.

My mother taught me many lessons but this week I am most thankful for all the times she said to me, "life isn't fair."  I used to think it was just her way of blowing me off.  I realize now that she was protecting me from a world of moronic excuses.

Suicide should be shamed, not excused, and if you disagree, you're just wrong.