Sunday, September 24, 2006

Love me, Daddy

Recently I spotted this article entitled Five Tips to Increase Your Likeability.

At first, I dismissed it. "This doesn't apply to me," I thought. "Who could be more likable than me?" But then I thought of you, my faithful readers, who keep coming back to this site time and time again to read what I've written...and then hurl malicious insults at me. You're as faithfull as hound dogs, but you're as vicious as piranas. Why is it, I wondered, that some bloggers have comment sections that read like award ceremony tributes, brimming with high praise and teary-eyed respect? Could it be that I am not as fabulous and lovable as I thought? That's when I realized that it couldn't hurt to try to increase my likeability, and thus perhaps turn my comments section into the ass-kisspalooza I so often see at other blogs.

Let's go over the main points of this article, and see how it might apply to me.

1. Be positive. The article asks, "Why do you have pet-peeves? What is the point of harboring all of these negative emotions? Be big enough to let them go."

Uh-oh. I can already see this is going to require a total personality overhaul. The kind that requires electroshock therapy, years of medication, and perhaps a partial lobotomy. So does this mean I'm no longer allowed to wish syphilis upon women who pee on public toilet seats? Can I no longer take potshots at my coworkers, my friends, my blog readers, little old ladies and newborn babies? What the hell will I blog about? I guess from now on, I will post only pictures of cute kittens, detailed recaps of TV shows I've watched in the past week, and famous poems that inspire me.

2. Control your insecurities. "Display your faults for all the world to see - mistakes are unifying characteristics which all humans can empathize with."

Okay, no one can accuse me of not displaying my mistakes. You can't say I haven't fastidiously detailed my many, many, MANY flaws for your review and consequent scorn, in my posts entitled 100 Things Wrong With Me Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, and Part 10. Should I delve deeper, and reveal even more flaws? Is that what it takes be liked? Fine, then. Here's another Thing Wrong With Me: I buy canned soup with meat in it, and then painstakingly pick out all the meat after I cook it. Every time. Every tiny little scrap of meat. Why? Because that's some very suspicious-looking meat. Why don't I just buy the kind without meat? Because that would rob me of the joy of picking out the meat. Now stop asking silly questions.

3. Provide value. The author makes this point: "Have you noticed that drug addicts and criminals often associate with each other? ....Start surrounding yourself with people of value " Sadly, that means I'll have to say goodbye to most of my friends and nearly everyone in my family, but I'm willing to do it to increase my likability. As for providing value, well, I'll start today. From here on out I vow to teach everyone I see each day, stranger or aquaintance, how to properly cook oatmeal.

4. Eliminate all judgments. "No one is above you and no one is below you. We are all....humans." Amen to that, brother, I've always said so. I think we can agree that was the whole point of my Dear Jackass posts.

5. Become a person of conviction. "This means saying 'no' to disrespect and letting the offending party know that he or she crossed the line with their comment and you did not appreciate it."

This one's tough. I'm not sure how I'm supposed to have convictions without being able to make judgments. However, I do like the idea of telling people off. I have already begun to practice shouting, "You, sir, have crossed the line!" as I angrily toss my head and slam my fist on the table. It feels rather good. This is sure to make people like me.

All in all, this personality makeover is going to be a whole lot easier than I thought. Just think, soon you will all love me! You'll begin stuffing my comments section with the highest praise and the sappiest words of adoration imaginable. Up til now, I've been the only person who adored me and marveled at my genius. Soon you'll all be clamoring for the title of Number One Fan. This is very exciting. Go ahead, start adoring me.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

It's your chance to shine.

I don't ask for much from you guys. Okay, sure, I ask you to read my self-important blather, and yes, I ask you to give me "just one more" break and not call Child Protective Services on me. And true, sometimes I ask you to let me stay at your house while I'm hiding out from the Feds. You almost never agree to that request, but it doesn't hurt to ask. But aside from that short list, I really don't ask you for much.

But I'm asking you for help now. Not because I think so highly of your opinion, or because you're someone I love and trust...but more because no one else will come through for me on this. You're all I've got, and that makes my prospects pretty sad.

Still, I beg you: Help me think of a good Halloween costume this year.

The fact that I'm turning to you at all shows how desperate I am. After all, I asked you for help last year, and frankly, your advice blew. And my costume ended up sucking, thanks to your lackluster efforts.

So why do I turn to you again this year? The answer is simple: I'm doing it for you. I hate to think of you feeling badly about yourself after last year's disappointing performance. I don't want you feeling like a failure as a friend. You can't truly flourish and improve as a person if you doubt your own abilities and creativity. So in a selfless effort to help you boost your self-confidence, I hereby entrust you with this challenge: Come up with a spectacular costume idea for me. Imagine how good you'll feel about yourself when you conquer this goal! Envision yourself achieving greatness, really stepping up to the plate to prove yourself to be more than you previously imagined you ever could be. This glorious bit of success could mark the turning point for you, the moment where your world opens up and you begin to understand and utilize the awesome power within you.

I want that for you; I truly do.

Let's review the mediocrity of costumes past:

Examining the above photos, two questions probably spring immediately to your mind:

1) What the hell is that costume in the bottom middle picture supposed to be?

2) And what's with the Bon Jovi hair?

Yeah, I have no idea what that costume was supposed to be. And as for the hair, all I can say is I drank a lot back then. But a quick glance at all the costumes reveals a sad lack of creative flair. Most of these so-called costumes are just glorified slut-suits. I don't have photos from the years I went as a 1920's flapper, or a cheerleader, or a pirate, but rest assured, those were glorified slut-suits as well. And don't get me wrong, I'm not above a slut-suit this year. I'd just like to be a little more creative with my costume, be it wholesome and virginal, or cheap and tawdry. Correction: I'd like you to be a little more creative.

In the more recent past, I've been limited by my desire to do "couples" costumes--which is only limiting in my case because Brian shouted a hearty "NO!" to almost every suggestion I brought forth. He didn't want to do anything complicated, uncomfortable, embarrassing or silly--which left us with few choices. Therefore, in 2005, I was a Catholic school girl and Brian was a priest. In 2004, I was a cop and he was a convict. In 2002, I was a groupie and he was a rock star. Holy shit, this list is making me fall asleep as I type it. Now that I think of it, you guys actually did come up with some good ideas last year, but it was Herr Brian who put the kibosh on almost every one, even though he submitted exactly zero ideas of his own. So this year, I'm scrapping the idea of a "couples" costume. I'm going to wear something fabulous, and he can fend for himself.

So you've got your work cut out for you, but it should be much, much easier than what I asked of you last year. I'll wear anything as long as:

a) I look adorable in it

b) I get big laughs from it, or

c) I can hide a fifth of tequila somewhere in it.

So put on your thinking caps. No internet-surfing this week: You've got a job to do. Now get out there and make your mama proud.

Monday, September 11, 2006

A tough decision was made.

Meet Jade.
She's a female Rottweiler. Sweet, mild-mannered and affectionate, she doesn't bark, jump up, dig or attempt to kill my neighbors. She doesn't beg for food when we eat in front of her. She's no use as a guard dog because of her propensity for licking intruders, but her charm outweighs her shortcomings. She doesn't attempt to get on the furniture or chew up my shoes, and even people who profess not to be "dog people" love her. I've had her since she was 5 weeks old, which was 11 years ago. I trained her myself, and she lives in the house with us. She and I haven't been apart for more than a few days since she was weaned. I love her very much.

Meet Jake.
He's a Caucasian male. Incredibly sweet, and generally fun to be around, he loves Mickey Mouse and my pajama pants with monkeys on them. He's quick to alert us when there's a ball in the vicinity, by pointing at it for about half an hour and shouting "Baaaaa!!!!" over and over, lest we forget or in case we've gone deaf. He's a picky eater who hates having his nose wiped, but his good traits outweigh the bad. He never pees in the bathtub, and has yet to throw any of his belongings or mine into the toilet. He's gentle with pets, and no longer bites me when I'm hugging him. He's fun to tickle. I've had him since he was born 19 months ago, and we haven't been apart more than a few hours since he was forcibly ejected from my hoo-ha. I love him very much.

The two of them, Rottweiler and Caucasian male, get along swimmingly. Neither has bitten the other, and neither has tried to steal food from the other. I never have to break up skirmishes between them or threaten to pick up one of them to beat the other one with. It would seem to be a perfect situation...and yet.

The other day I happened to round the corner just in time to catch Jake on his hands and knees, dipping his face into the dog's water bowl. From what I could tell, he was genuinely shocked to discover how unrewarding the experience was. He gasped and snapped his head up, and if he could talk, I imagine he would have confessed to me that it looked a lot more fun when he saw Jade doing it.

Cute story, right? Not really. Here's what the aforementioned water bowl looked like that day:

I'd like to blame the filth on this... ...and surely some of the blame lies therein, but I know it's my job to clean and properly maintain that water bowl. I'm a bad dog owner, and now my son has cooties as a result of my laziness. So I accept the blame. But the problem remains: I can't keep this kid now. He's been soiled. And yes, goofball, I bathed him. He's had several baths since this horrifying event took place. But who am I kidding? This kind of filth can't be washed away.

Several months ago I tried to get rid of Jake for what I considered a very fair price:

Obviously, he didn't sell, and now his value has plummeted thanks to his recent dip the petri dish. So now I offer you:

Free To A Good Home: One Caucasian male. No need to provide proof of a good home. Your word is good enough. Please come pick him up ASAP.