Bachelor parties

As I said yesterday, tomorrow I embark on a bachelor party. I will be going to Canada with 17 other men, and we will be taking a party bus that has an interior that looks like this:

Yes, that is indeed a kitchen. Your eyes do not deceive you.

Obviously, I am excited. It is the third bachelor party I will be attending in my lifetime, with the prior two having taken place in Las Vegas. Thus, even though all bachelor parties are different and unique, I for the most part know what to expect this upcoming weekend. It’s going to be awesome.

Bachelor parties are quite the unique experience. I imagine they are quite the hassle to plan, but, obviously, it all makes up for it when you actually participate in it.

If you are an alien and you just landed on our planet and have no idea whatsoever of human culture, then, on the surface, bachelor parties sound pretty absurd.

Just mere weeks before forming the most sanctimonious and holiest of bonds that two souls ever could partake in, the male is essentially going away for a weekend, completely abandoning his loved one, and spending all of his time getting drunk and partying with strippers and any other females that they might encounter along the way. And yet, it’s a normal, accepted part of our culture.

Heck, it’s more than that. It’s a rite of passage. You do not become a man until you have your bachelor party. You only get one, and you better make it count.

How awesome is that? How awesome are our forefathers for establishing this? No offense girls, I know you have bachelorette parties, and from what I know about them, they suck. Men know how to do it the right way.

Normally what happens on a bachelor party goes unspoken of forever. Those who participated now have an everlasting, mutual, silent bond that says, “what happens here, stays here.”

That doesn’t necessarily mean that the bachelor will conduct any type of behavior that would devastate his wife-to-be if she were to find out; maybe he does, maybe he doesn’t. Either way, you don’t tell. At the very least, I don’t think the wife-to-be would want a detailed description of the lap dance her fiance received in the back of the V.I.P. room.

Which brings me to the question, why do women allow this? Is it because they understand that this is just how the world goes? Do they have that much trust that their fiance won’t do anything foolish to jeopardize their relationship?

I’ve never been engaged, and never had my own bachelor party, so I can’t speak for the conversations that take place between the soon-to-be-married couple in the days leading up to the bachelor and bachelorette parties. But I’m guessing the girl will say something like, “Have fun — but not too much fun — and whatever happens, make sure I do not find out.”

That makes sense. But who knows, maybe if the girl is a little more strict, she’ll give much more specific guidelines. Maybe she’ll say no strippers (we won’t listen), maybe she’ll say no lap dances (we won’t listen), or maybe she’ll say no unprotected sex with women you find out on the street (that we probably will listen to.) I guess it really all comes down to how “cool” the girl is.

The opposite of cool would be the girl from “The Hangover” who Ed Helms is dating. He has to lie to her about where he is going. If you’re marrying a girl where that type of behavior has to take place, well, you’re probably making a mistake and should get out of that situation as fast as you can, a la Ed Helms. Spoiler alert.

Although, I guess that while the men have the bachelor party, the women have the wedding. That is as joyful to them as the bachelor party is to the man. Which is something, as men, we will never understand.

In conclusion, I just think it’s awesome that this type of thing happens, and that it’s deemed okay by all parties. Our country sucks in a lot of regards, but this is definitely something that it got right.

I’ll see you all on the other side.

How disappointing is it when you realize that you don’t miss college anymore?

There really is no worse time for a human being than the first year out of college.

One minute you’re not taking life seriously, with no responsibilities, staying out late and going to class hung over, living with all of your buddies and doing whatever the heck you want, and in the blink of an eye, you’re back living with your parents, having to find a job during an economic recession, getting scolded by your parents for not being able to find a job, and spending every second wishing you were back in college.

It’s impossible to not take your undergrad experience for granted. You don’t know any better. None of us realize the cold, hard truth: After college, your life is pretty much over.

Yeah, this started out a little depressing. But don’t worry, it gets better.

So, in the first couple months out of college, you’re pretty much in denial. You don’t want to believe that it’s over, and that you need to start your life, so you just continue to act as if you still were in college. You go out as much as you can, you keep getting drunk, playing beerpong, and not even thinking about applying for a jobs. But, heck, after four years of college, you deserve it!

The one cool thing about the immediate aftermath of graduation is that all of your friends are finally home at the same time. During college, every school has different time periods for their breaks, and everyone isn’t always back home while you are.

But when we all graduate, suddenly, everybody’s home, and the whole gang is back together. So for a couple of months, during the summer, you live blissfully.

And then August hits, and September. Suddenly, you come to the horrible realization: you are not going back to college.

The first year out of college was probably the worst year of my life. I had so much fun my senior year, and then reality sets in and it’s over. Over that year, I found myself clicking on my Facebook and revisiting all my college pictures on almost a daily basis. It was really depressing. I missed college more than anything.

It has now been a full two years (and two months) since I graduated college, and recently I realized that I don’t even miss it anymore. I barely ever think about it, it seems like a different lifetime ago, and I no longer stare off into space in the middle of the day while thinking, “Man, I wish I was still in college.”

On one hand it’s depressing as hell. Because it means it means I’m getting old. I rarely can stay up past midnight anymore [on weeknights.] I can’t sleep past 10 a.m. if I tried to. I suck at beer pong now even though I used to be awesome. It’s sad.

But on the other hand, it’s also kind of satisfying. I’m still proud of my college days, no doubt. I lived it up, I partied and I made a shitload of friendships that will last forever. But that time is done. I now have a stable job, I have money in my bank account, and I can pretty much do whatever the hell I want. That certainly was not the case a year ago.

So I guess what I would preach to the youngsters who are going to graduate college soon, is that going through some type of “identity crisis” post-graduation is only normal. It’s a shitty period, having to find a job and get your shit together and what not. But when you finally do, life becomes awesome again. There’s nothing better than finally having your own money, and being able to do what you want with it. It takes a while, but you’ll get there.

I can’t really say for sure when my mind finally put college behind me, and like I said it’s only something I realized recently, but I think it comes when you reach a certain piece of mind. It occurs when you finally feel a certain comfort level at your job, and when you feel like you have healthy social life, and lastly, that you’ve finally become confident that “you can do this.” And by “you can do this,” I mean succeed at life.

Because, let’s face it, we all have our doubts. A’s and B’s in college only mean so much. When you finally enter the real world, there’s a lot of things you need to figure out that aren’t listed in a textbook. To say that it is intimidating is a bit of an understatment.

For some, it may take longer, but as long as you stay determined, and don’t doubt yourself too much, the day will finally come when you realize that life can become awesome again long after college has ended. That is certainly the case for me now.

Okay, enough of that. So I was running today, and whenever I run I always listen to music, which blocks out all sound around me. Also, whenever I run, and particularly at the end when I’m out of breath, I’ll get a little bit phlegmy.

So as I was running down the last stretch on a side road near my house, completely exhausted, and I had to spit. Without thinking, I released a huge wad of spit from my mouth onto the sidewalk, not caring if anybody saw me. I was right near the curb when I did it, and as soon as it happened, I glance over to my right, and see a family of about eight people just sitting on their doorstep staring at me.

I simply just smiled awkwardly, did some sort of weird laugh, and sped up a little more. Normally, I would have stopped at the corner, but I made sure to turn the corner and kept going until I was well out of distance.

I don’t think I could run down that way anymore.

Oh and one more thing. So I haven’t said this yet, but on Friday, I will be embarking on my third bachelor party in the last year-and-a-half. This time in Canada. It’s going to pretty unbelievable, especially considering that the form of transportation we are taking to get there is not a plane, not a car, but a party bus. Where we can drink the entire way there. (Did I just talk about how I’m not trying to relive my college days? So much for that.)

As a result, tomorrow, in preparation, I will be writing a bachelor party oriented blog. Tune in tomorrow to see what the fuck that means.

People, put down your goddamn smart phones

I understand that smart phones are the new hip form of technology. I understand that it’s really cool to basically have the entire world at your fingertips and all. I get that.

But in a nation where things are becoming more and more simplified by the day, which in turn has caused people’s attention spans to dwindle by extravagant proportions, smart phones are really starting to cause a problem.

Smart phones have been around for a good couple of years now. Initially, only the privileged were able to get them right away. People with good jobs, or kids whose mommies and daddies had good jobs and loved to spoil them, etc. But now, we’re midway through 2011, and if you don’t have a smart phone, you’ve fallen behind.

I myself made the conversion about seven months ago, and I never looked back. At first, it’s a little intimidating upon purchasing your first smart phone. In the past, all you could do was text people when you’re bored, and now, with smart phones, you can do, well, anything. You can play games, you can read the news, you can receive oral sex (not yet, but hopefully soon), anything.

Bearing that in mind, it’s only natural to be consumed with your phone upon first getting it. I remember in the first few weeks that I owned my Droid, I was on it practically 24/7. Even at work I was always on it. I was on it so much my battery would only last a few hours.

But now, as I said before, it’s been seven months. The honeymoon is over. Sure, you can always download new apps, but, you should be used to your smart phone by now. You don’t need to be on it all the time.

And yet, most people didn’t get the memo.

Does anyone else become as annoyed as I do, when you’re sitting around with a few people, having a conversation, and one of them has their smart phone out, and is acting clearly disinterested in anything that is happening outside of their phone?

I almost want to either throw something at their head, preferably something of the heavy variety, and say “Yo, there’s a whole world outside of your 5 by 3 inch screen on your iPhone, give it a glance every now and then.”

I truly feel like people forget that the world exists sometimes, and truly believe that they live in the little machine that is their phone. I think Aladdin needs to knock on people’s windows, one by one, and give them a magic carpet ride tour of the world while explaining that there is a “whole new world” to discover. (But don’t assume that all carpets have flying capabilities. I learned that the hard way.)

I mean, if you want to check a text message, or see if you have any emails, that’s cool. I won’t get on you for that. But when people are staring at their phones for minutes at a time, or constantly checking their screen every five seconds, well, that’s when I begin to get annoyed.

Whenever I witness this, in my eyes, the person is basically saying to everyone else, “Eh, I don’t give a shit about you guys at all, I got more important people to talk to, more important things to take care of.” They’re above it all. Sure, they may be with you in a physical sense, but mentally, they’re miles away.

When did people lose all of sense of place and time? When did people stop living in the moment? When did people forget that, every now and then, they should stop and smell the roses?

I wonder if anyone’s actually ever done that; saw a rosebush while they were walking, and actually stopped what they were doing to smell them. Sounds pretty gay.

But, seriously, I take offense to this. If I’m sitting in a group, and I realize that one member of my party is not even paying the slightest attention to me or the others in said party, and is clearly more interested in what is going on in their phone, then how can you take anything but offense towards that? It clearly means you are not good enough for them.

Ideally, I would take the phone out of their hands and smash it onto the floor. Unfortunately, I don’t got that kind of dough to replace the phone, which of course I would be obliged to do.

Even worse than this behavior is when people complain that their smart phone is temporarily not working, because it froze, or because the Internet is acting slow or something. You know what you’re complaining about, right? That the INTERNET on your PHONE is not up to speed. That’s something that belongs on, a great site that I only discovered recently. Check it out. I have nothing to do with it, so I’m not plugging, I just think it’s hysterical.

Alright enough complaining.

Actually, no, it’s not enough.

Does anybody else feel like this song from the Subway commercial should be banned?

It’s so catchy that I’m pretty sure I have woken up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat on multiple occasions while hearing the “I’m feeling Subwaaay” theme playing in my head. It’s not pleasant at all.

It’s so annoying that I hope that whoever wrote this song actually gets hit by an actual subway. How would that happen? I don’t know; perhaps he/she was too busy texting on their phone that they didn’t see it coming.


What’s even worse than finding out that a girl has a boyfriend…

Before I begin, allow me to apologize for the lack of blogging yesterday. If there’s anything I have learned in the year and a half since I started the Weinblog, it’s that when you come home late at night in a state of full intoxication, you probably should not start writing things that are freely viewable to the public. Or even access a computer at all.

But here I am, blogging and, for the most part, sober.

And yes, I am aware that 76 Norwegians were killed on Friday, and even worse — apparently, according to the media — , Amy Winehouse died. I will most certainly touch on that, but first, I want to discuss a premeditated topic that occurred to me at some point this weekend. I will say now, however, just to clear the air, that Amy Winehouse and I are not related. I know both our last names start the same way, albeit different spelling, but I just want to end the confusion once and for all. She is not my kin.

Okay, so one of my favorite things to complain about is how frustrating it is when I meet a girl, whose physical appearance can range from moderately to extremely attractive, only to discover that she has a boyfriend. It is a pretty awful occurrence. I’ve discussed this previously on this blog, which you can view here and here.

Well, I don’t really want to get into anything too specific, but I actually discovered something that is even worse.

What’s even worse is when you become acquainted with a nice young lass, whose your age, with a pretty face — who you may or may not like, maybe you don’t even know it yet, or maybe you do — only to immediately find out that she has a boyfriend. And THEN to discover that her boyfriend is actually a pleasant, cool, all-around great guy.

Get the fuck outta here dude. I want to hate you. I don’t want to actually see that you’re funny, that you have a great personality, that you make a lot more money than I do, and that you volunteer at soup kitchens on your spare time.

When you first hear a girl drop the ‘B’ word, you instantly, without even thinking about it, imagine that her boyfriend is a complete and total douchebag. You don’t know a single thing about him, but you already detest the very thought of his existence.

It’s like in a romantic comedy, when you meet the girl, realize that you have this connection, only to watch as her asshole boyfriend strolls up, says something offensive, has spiked hair, isn’t friendly, isn’t smart, and is clearly wrong for her. You almost expect to accidentally walk into a room and stumble into him while he’s cheating on her and hooking up with another girl. Then you face the moral dilemma as to whether to tell the truth, but before you decide, the asshole boyfriend says a lie about you to his naive girlfriend, attempting to discredit you just in case you decide to tell her what you saw, and in result she won’t believe you and call you a liar. Then in the end, she discovers the real truth the hard way, breaks up with the asshole, comes back to you and you live happily ever after.

See: any romantic comedy ever made.

In most cases you don’t even meet the boyfriend upon first learning of his existence. the girl will just drop his name into a sentence, and you’ll know he exists, and most of the time you may never end up meeting him, and you can just live blissfully in ignorance under the assumption that he is a horrible, horrible person, and that he throws empty beer cans at kittens in his spare time.

But, in rare circumstances, you will actually see the two of them together, only to come to the realization that he is not an asshole, that he is not stupid, mean or a kitten hater, but that he is actually a fantastic human being that any girl would be lucky to have.

Side note, I’d like to think that also could also be used to describe me, but, let’s face it, it doesn’t (I’m better.)

When this happens, there’s really nothing you can do. Sure, you can hate him internally just for existing, but what else? You can’t hate him for his soft, wavy hair, his charming smile, his perfectly symmetrical chin, nothing. Naturally, you’ll look for reasons to hate him, but they’ll probably be pretty weak. Maybe you’ll judge how foolishly he double-knots his sneakers, or something. I don’t exactly think that is grounds for a break-up.

Again, this is the very last thing that you ever want to discover. If the guy very clearly a toolbag, then you can at least live in peace knowing that the relationship will not last. You can’t actually know that for sure, but at least you can think it.

But when the guy is the male version of Mother Teresa, with the gallantry of Cary Grant, the personality of Bob Hope and the physique of John Cena, then you might as well just wave the white flag. You lost. Game over. It’s more infuriating that someone like this even exists, and that, of course, had to become acquainted with a girl that you actually had your eye on.

It is completely disappointing in every possible way.

So let’s move off this disappointing topic and move on to an even more disappointing one in the form of all those deaths that I mentioned earlier.

The Norwegian deaths, well, I don’t really know what else I can say that everyone else hasn’t thought already. Everything about it is sickening, and the fact that one single guy, this Anders Behring Breivik dude, was connected to both the Oslo bombing and the shooting spree at the summer camp, killing 76 people in total, is nothing short of evil. I’m almost glad they caught him alive, and that he didn’t kill himself or get gunned down by a police officer, just so he can live out the rest of his pathetic life in humiliation, shame and fear. Because you should know, Anders, that what goes around, comes around, bitch.

As for Amy Winehouse, well, I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but upon hearing this, the news was as shocking to me as if somebody had told me that the sun had come up that morning.

Let me just preface by saying, I hate those people who come forward and say, without even being asked, “I have no sympathy for him/her” for anyone that has ever died an immoral death. And I don’t want to be one of those guys. However, I’ll just quickly give my two cents.

Did Winehouse have talent? Sure, she had a great voice and probably could have created more platinum-selling albums and won more Grammys, but so could a lot of people. At this point, she was known more for being a drug addict than a singer. She was an absolutely horrific role model, and she really had an exorbitant amount of time to turn her life around, and didn’t.

I mean, I’ve never been addicted to any type of drug before, so I can’t know what it’s like to be consumed in such a thing, but I know that it doesn’t leave a whole lot of room for sympathy. I would never ever condone somebody for listening to Amy Winehouse’s music, or even for being a fan of hers, because sometimes you need to differentiate the art from the artist. A lot of fucked up people have created some beautiful things. But, at the same time, it’s hard for me to get all teared up over this. Especially when you compare it to what happened in Norway.

And please, do not lump her together with Hendrix, Morrison, Joplin or Cobain. Yes, she was 27 when she died. The comparisons end there.

More than anything, I’m just glad that Amy Winehouse didn’t have a blog. The “Wineblog” really would have stolen a lot of my thunder!

Why do girls say they’re in a relationship with other girls on Facebook?

Yesterday I was checking this girl out on Facebook. This is something I almost never do.

Naturally, when I click on her page, my eyes immediately dart to the spot where her relationship status would be. If she has a boyfriend, I’m not going to bother wasting my time.

If there is no relationship status listed, then I know she’s single. Because if she does have a boyfriend, it will say so. Girls will not miss the opportunity to flaunt the fact that they have a boyfriend. No way. When a guy and girl begin dating, it’s always the girl who first decides that the two are in a relationship, and then she sends the relationship status request. Before the guy even knows it, — perhaps he was hoping for it, or (more likely) he thought the two of them were just fooling around — bam! He’s in a relationship. Thanks Facebook!

So, anyway, I’m on this girl’s page and I glance towards the top, and I see, “In a relationship with…” and that causes me to sigh in disappointment. She has a boyfriend. Fuck. But then I keep reading…

“In a relationship with… [girl’s name here.]”

For a split-second, just a split-second, I thought, “She’s a lesbian… nice!” But then I remembered that girls do this. They love joining together with one of their girl best friends and saying that they are in a relationship. Why does this occur?

If guys did this, it would be the gayest thing ever. It wouldn’t be funny, it wouldn’t be clever, it would serve no purpose. One would see it and draw one single conclusion: you’re gay. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that…)

But girls do this all the time. And I think I may know why. *Puts on smart-looking glasses and attempts to delve into the philosophy of females*

Girls hate being single. They may say aloud how they “just want to do their own thing,” or how they’re “not in a place where they want a boyfriend right now,” but deep down, every girl wants to love and be loved. No women EVER wakes up one morning and says, “God, I hope I don’t get swept off my feet today!”

Okay, that last line, I stole it from the movie “Hitch.” Thanks Will Smith. But regardless of who said it, it’s true.

So, again, girls hate being single, but even moreso, they hate the entire world knowing that they are single. Thankfully, for them, Facebook did away with having relationship statuses front-and-center. In the past, there were just two options: “In a relationship” or “single.” One or the other. Now, you have the option of not putting anything at all.

However, as much as I try to discredit them, girls are not stupid. They know that if they don’t put anything there, that other people will see that and immediately will come to the conclusion that they are single.

But, if they put that they are in a relationship with another girl, it will instill some semblance of doubt into other people’s minds. Others will see that, and say, “Hmm, since she’s clearly not taking the relationship status seriously, then I don’t know what her situation really is…”

But, me being as savvy as I am, I see right through it. It tells me that they are very much single, and very much uncomfortable with it. They pretend that they’re all cool and liberated with the fact that they’re single, but in reality, it’s killing them. So they team up with their BFF and say, “hey, if I’m miserably single, and you’re miserably single, then let’s be miserably single together — in a relationship!”  It’s actually pretty smart. If I was a girl, I might even do the same thing. But I am not a girl.

I wonder what actual lesbians think of this behavior. Does it offend them that other girls are making light of the girl-on-girl relationship? Does it make the girl-on-girl relationship any less sanctimonious? All good questions that I would love to hear lesbians give me the answer to. While in bed. With me.

Hmm, now how do I transition from that last statement to Harry Potter? You really can’t So let’s just go with it.

I finally, FINALLY, saw the final Harry Potter film today. I enjoyed it immensely. As a huge fan of the books, the film gained my approval, and that is not easy to obtain. While the first part of the 7th movie actually blew me away, since its excellence was so unexpected, I think it’s fair to say that this film did not blow me away, simply because the success of part one made me elevate my expectations.

Even so, my expectations were met. The discrepancies from the book were fairly minor, and nothing to cry about, although I did disagree a little bit with how they handled one of the final scenes. However, the key scenes, which come just before the final showdown between Harry and He-Who-Must-Not-Ne-Named, were perfect. The movie nailed it, and since they were the most important parts of the story, it was immensely satisfying. I’d say that if you enjoyed part one, then part two is a must see.

I become amused when I see all of these Facebook statuses, or just hear people saying aloud, “I’m so sad that it’s over.”

It’s over?

Sure, the books have been done for four years (exactly to the day!) and the final movie is now completed, but I never viewed the movies as the end-all-be-all to the entire Harry Potter experience.

I’ve said this numerous times, but I was obsessed with Harry Potter during my youth. I read the books over and over again, and each time, I got something new out of them. I’m 24 now, not 12, and I don’t read them much anymore. In fact, I haven’t really read them in over three years. However, one day, I will again. I just have to know when the time is right.

When I do, it will be special, because it will be nostalgic and will bring me back to the days of my childhood. I know it will. When I read them again, it will bring me back to the days when I’d come home from school, lie down on my bed, open a Potter book and read for hours nonstop. Through Harry Potter, my childhood will never end. And they’ll always be there. I’ll always have that.

And one day, I will introduce the books to my children, and then watch as they read and react to the stories, and I will get to relive the books yet again, this time vicariously through them.

So who the hell says it’s over? If you never stop believing in the magic, it’s only just beginning. (Corny, I know… but true.)

I know I’ve been talking for a while, but I just want to say one last thing. I’m not sure why I have yet to mention the U.S. women’s soccer team at all this week, possibly it’s because I’m so used to women disgracing America (just kidding!!!), but obviously, as you all know by now, they lost the World Cup final in pretty horrific fashion.

However, as I’m sure most guys noticed, there are some pretty cute chicks on that team. A couple in particular, and especially one of them.

First, there’s the goalie, Hope Solo.

Hope Solo

Nothing spectacular; if I saw her on the street, I would probably look again, and say, “Oh, that’s nice.” And then I’d forget about her a few minutes later. But the fact that she’s a world-class goalkeeper, well that adds to her appeal. I approve.

But then, in another league of her own, there is Alex Morgan.

Alex Morgan

Oh. My. God.

Remember in 1999, when Brandi Chastain famously scored the game-winning goal, and then took her top off to reveal her sports bra? I would have paid anything for Alex Morgan to do that. And not only that, but she’s the youngest AND most talented player on that team. She is the whole freaking package.

There is no doubt in my mind that they will market the shit out of her to try to popularize women’s soccer, like they used to do with Mia Hamm. Except, hopefully, Alex Morgan won’t marry some bum like Nomar Garciaparra, like Mia Hamm did, and marry somebody with actual talent.

Like me.

When do punk kids come to the realization that they are assholes?

If ever?

Today I am driving my car, and on the opposite side of the road I see this punk kid, about 15 or 16 years old, cruising along on a skateboard while wearing sunglasses and a flat-brimmed cap. Now, if anyone knows me at all, they know that I never buy into stereotypes. Ever. But this kid’s physical appearance redefined the word “douchebag.”

Not only that, but he was basically skateboarding in the middle of the road. He had that look on his face that plainly said, “Yeah, I’m in the middle of the road, what are you going to do about it?”

So then I see a car coming in his direction, and I am curious to see what was going to happen — even though I already knew. I knew the kid wouldn’t move.

Half of me was hoping that the car would hit the kid. But what ended up happening was the car slowing down, and driving around him. Okay, so he wasn’t exactly in the “middle of the road,” like I said, but he was in the middle of the right lane. Same shit.

Anyway, I was on the opposite side of the road and going the same direction as the kid as I witnessed this. I just stared at the kid with a look of detest. He didn’t see me. He’s a punk, after all, so he’s too cool to notice anything.

What the fuck? Who do you blame here? Is it the parents? Or are some kids just innately born this way? If I have a kid who acted like this, I will be gravely disappointed. I might even prefer my kid to be gay than act like this.

But what I am curious to know is when these punk kids finally wake up one morning and go, “Wow, I’ve been a douchebag my entire life!” Is it simply just a matter of maturity? Do they have to turn 19, 20 or 21 years old to finally get that “wake-up call” and realize that trying to be a tough guy and breaking all the rules isn’t a way to live a successful life?

One would hope that it would be sooner. I asked before if it’s the parents that are the cause for this. It’s definitely part of the equation, but in my opinion, I think it is most likely the group of friends that the kid chooses to hang around. That is what most likely causes this behavior. Adolescents are very naive and easily influenced. They befriend a kid, misinterpret his troubled behavior as “cool,” and then try to emulate them. Soon enough, four or five other kids do the same exact thing, and you have an entire group of douchebags! It’s a douchegroup!

I’ve seen it before. One kid acts one way his entire life, then all of a sudden he gets mixed up with the wrong crowd, and bam! He sucks.

I understand that going through a “bad boy” or rebellious phase is a common part of the maturation process, but you would hope that it is short-lived, and doesn’t become permanent.

And bear in mind, that if I am the car that is coming in your direction while you are skateboarding in the middle of the lane, you may not get so lucky.

…Because I might honk first, and then swerve out of the way.

Let’s switch gears for a moment (NO PUN INTENDED! HA HA HA HA *shoots himself in the head*) Harry Potter was released five days ago now, and I still haven’t seen it. I’m getting desperate. It may even be getting to a point where I may need to go to the theater and see it… yelp… alone.

Has anyone actually seen a movie alone? I really can’t think of anything more humiliating.

When you actually think about it, it isn’t really that big of a deal. During a movie, you don’t talk to somebody anyway. You sit there quietly and focus on the screen. Also, when you’re alone, you don’t have to worry about waiting on people and getting there late, and it’s easier to find a seat because you are just looking for one available seat. Additionally, you can sit wherever you want without having to worry about everybody’s preference.

Going to the movies alone should be awesome when you consider all that. But to me, it still feels wrong and embarrassing. I almost feel like when I’m buying my ticket, the movie theater employee is judging me, and thinking “Wow, look at this loser, seeing a movie by himself!” I’d feel like I’m compelled to say something to defend myself, like “I’m meeting my girlfriend in the theater,” or something. No one would believe me.

Also, I wouldn’t enjoy sitting there by my lonesome while other people walk by me looking for seats of their own. I feel like people would think I’m some type of diseased leper that can’t sit within three seats of anybody else, and that I’d end up getting an entire row to myself.

So, even though it makes perfect sense to see a movie by yourself, you will never see me doing it. I have way too much pride. It’s totally undeserved and unfounded pride, but pride nonetheless. Thus, I will do whatever it takes to find somebody to see Harry Potter with me soon that has not seen it yet.

And if some punk kid talks in the theater while I am trying to enjoy the film, so help me God, I will stab them.

Half of me is guido

So today was kind of a thrill. All my life, I’ve been a huge Mets fan. And today I got to meet a Met. A local camp managed to get Mets first basemen Ike Davis to come and visit and speak to the campers, and fortunately for me, I got to cover it for my newspaper.

I got to head down there this morning and hang out for a couple of hours while Ike shared words of wisdom with 11 and 12-year-olds.

Oh, and speaking of 11 and 12-year-olds, I was fortunate enough to find a judge earlier this morning who could lift my restraining order, allowing me to go to the camp in the first place! *TOTALLY KIDDING, PEDOPHILIA IS NOT FUNNY*

Anyway, I know it’s cliché to say this, but Ike is a cool dude. He seems like any other 24-year-old (same age as me!) and is someone who I definitely could see myself grabbing a beer with. We’re buddies now. I started out by calling him Ike, and then I tried I-Dawg, and he slapped me in the face. Okay, I didn’t call him that. But I easily could have.

Here’s a picture of me and I-Dawg:

Who's that handsome guy on the left?

By the way, don’t let the height difference fool you. I very proudly stand at 5’9″, (okay, 5’8″ and three-quarters, fuck you) but Ike is a monster and is a good 6’4″, 230 pounds. I could probably still take him.

Anyway, my dad is also a huge Mets fan. So I came home today and showed him this picture, without giving him any context. I hadn’t told him beforehand that I was meeting Ike Davis today. So he looks at the picture, and not even kidding, his immediate reaction is: “Wow, is that Ike Davis? And who is that next to him? His son?”

Wow dad.

Oh and a funny tidbit from the day: One camper asked Ike who he got his first career hit against. Ike said that it was off of a Chicago Cubs pitcher, but that the name had slipped his mind. Immediately, I looked up the answer on my Droid, and later, upon taking this picture with him, I turned to Ike and said, “By the way, your first hit… it was off Randy Wells.” Ike raised his hand and said “Randy Wells!” as if it had been frustrating him all day that he couldn’t remember. So that was cool. And for once, my smart phone actually proved useful.

But I don’t know, I think it might have been a bigger thrill for Ike to get meet me than for me to meet Ike. I do write this blog, after all, amirite people? Just agree with me. Please.

The one downside from today was that the weather outside was absolutely scorching. About 90 degrees with humidity, and the sun out and blasting. Since my reason for being there was work-related, I had to wear jeans and a collared shirt. I really did not know I was capable of sweating as much as I did today. The scary thing is that it’s been several hours since all this happened and I still have not showered yet.

Yeah, yeah, I know, “Wahh he’s whining about being outside all day while I was stuck at the office!” Don’t worry, I know. I’m sure you probably posted on Facebook at some point today about how you wish you were at the beach. I get it.

As a result of the sunny weather, I got incredibly sunburnt. I have yet to acquaint myself with the beach this summer, and I think my skin was not accustomed to getting that much sunlight. And now, every part of my skin that was not covered by clothing is beet red. Half of me looks like Pauly D, while the other half looks like Casper the Friendly Ghost. Both of whom enjoy jaegerbombs.

It’s all good though, tomorrow I’ll be all tan and I’ll have a nice dark complexion, adding to my lust and appeal. No? Didn’t think so. Even as I typed it I knew it didn’t sound right.

Alright, it’s time for that shower. After all, cleanliness is something that appeals to girls, I’ve been told.

Does not giving a shit about your weekend make me a bad person?

I’m not an extremely talkative person (in person, at least). If you want to know something about me, I’ll be glad to tell you. However, in general, I don’t assume that people want to know things about me. So I’m not one of those people who is going to divulge information without being asked.

Don’t you just hate those people who give you their entire life story simply because you asked them “How are you?” When I ask that question, all I’m looking for is a simple “I’m good.” I’m not actually interested in how you are. Maybe if you’re hot I will care a little bit more, but still not really. Whenever somebody does this, my brain goes into autopilot and I start envisioning some entertaining images, like cats playing baseball.

It’s just the nature of the world. People tend to be consumed with their own lives and are disinterested in everybody else’s. There’s nothing wrong with that; it’s just how people are. Most people don’t even realize it, actually.

So, when people come up to me on a Monday and ask what I did over the weekend, then I’ll have no qualms telling them. I do happen to live a pretty active social life, and often find myself wrapped in all types of crazy shenanigans. So I usually have a story or two to tell when people ask me how my weekend went.

But then I finish telling the story, and I realize that the proper etiquette would be for me to reciprocate and ask the person how their weekend went. But the truth is, I really don’t care. Sure, you asked me about my weekend, and I’m not sure why you care, but you did. You asked at your own risk, so I told you. Why do I have to know about yours?

I mean, I’m sure you didn’t really do anything that interesting. You probably just went out with your friends one night to some bar. That’s not exactly a gripping story. Or maybe you babysit your little cousins. That too is not something that is going to keep me on the edge of my seat. I would not respond to that with interest. For example, you wouldn’t hear me say: “Oh my God, no way! You babysit? Wow, I can’t believe it! I can’t believe you did such a thing! What else did you do? Did you buy them ice cream? Did you watch Winnie the Pooh? Did you tuck them in at night and then watch MTV until their parents came home? I need to know!”

I mean, maybe you did do something cool. Perhaps you took a road trip to see a concert. That’s pretty cool. Or maybe you got into a fight. I’d love to hear that story. Or maybe you spent the weekend inventing something practical, like a reusable cotton ball or something. That’s cool. But that’s not the typical answers that people have.

So my question is, does that make me a shithead if I don’t return the favor and ask the question back? I feel like I’m doing them a kindness by not asking. Because I’m not going to listen anyway, so I might as well let them save their breath.

Plus, say something extraordinary did happen to you over the weekend. I’m pretty sure you’d tell me without being asked. If I won the lottery over the weekend, I’m going to tell people. So, I figure that if something happened that I do need to know about, I’ll find out anyway. I don’t need to ask.

I really hope this doesn’t make me a bad person. This seriously is not my intention. Plus, I don’t actively think in my head, “Okay, I’m intentionally going to not ask this person how their weekend went.” It’s more like, I’m so disinterested that it doesn’t occur to me to ask. It’s the same reason why I don’t ask people what their favorite Byrds song is. It’s not something that matters to me.

Does it make me self-centered? Possibly. I feel like I make up for it in other ways. I say “Bless you” when other people sneeze, even if it’s a stranger. I hold doors for people who are walking behind me, even if it’s a stranger. I notify people whenever I think they’re looking slightly uglier than they probably should, even if it’s a stranger. I’m a fairly decent citizen.

Thus, I think I should get a reprieve for this.

Oh and speaking of particularly ugly, the new Rebecca Black single was released today. You remember Rebecca Black, right? She became an overnight sensation for her YouTube single, “Friday,” back in March/April. The reason she became so popular is because her lack of talent was so obvious, and it made for humor. We were all laughing at her, not with her (Yet she still became famous because of it, fuck.)

Well, it was announced that she would be coming out with more music at a later date. Me, being the optimist that I am, hoped that “a later date” meant “never,” but that apparently was not the case.

The way I saw it, Rebecca Black had two options. She could stick with the shtick of being a talentless hack that relied heavily on auto-tune just to make her sound moderately listenable, but still not really, and continued to make horribly amusing songs that people could listen to and laugh about. Since we all killed her for “Friday,” she wouldn’t have been ridiculed anymore had she gone this route, since she couldn’t really top that. She couldn’t get any worse, and at least she would have provided us with some laughs. The fact that she couldn’t actually sing wouldn’t have been an issue.

Or, she could’ve tried to make a serious song that nobody could enjoy, and shed more light on her inability to sing. It would be a disgusting attempt to prove that she’s an actual artist and everybody would laugh at her for an entirely new reason.

She chose the second option.

Well, I would LIKE to think that people with actual ears would hear this is and acknowledge her voice has been doctored more than Heidi Montag’s face (That’s right, I read People magazine, my mom gets a subscription and sometimes it’s the best reading material in the bathroom… don’t judge me,) but a part of me actually fears that this song will get significant radio play and become a hit.

Please don’t let me down America. I beg you.

Also, it’s a good thing that I’ll never have to ask Rebecca Black how her weekend went, because I already know that she got down on Friday.

Life’s too good for bad moods

I’m sitting here on a Sunday afternoon, epically hung over, and simultaneously watching an episode of Dexter (that I downloaded illegally) and the Mets game (perfectly legally). Also, it’s absolutely beautiful outside, and I’m thinking that later today I’ll probably go for a run.

It’s nothing special. I’m not on a tropical vacation, I’m not in a room full of supermodels, and I’m not holding a million dollar-winning lottery ticket in the palm of my hands.

However, it’s one of those moments where you just stop and say, “Yeah, life is pretty good.”

That is usually the nature of Sundays. While Fridays and Saturdays are designated for all types of debauchery so that we can blow off steam from the workweek and have some fun in the process, Sundays are the opposite and are made for rest. Nothing else. Where you do it – at the park, the beach, in your house – is up to you.

I’m actually curious to delve into historical records and discover if anything of note – any major invention, accomplishment, crime, etc. – ever took place on Sunday. Who the hell ever has motivation to do anything on a Sunday?! Heck, even God rested on Sunday!

But yeah, there might have been a time, about a year and a half ago or so, where I would have sat in this very spot on a Sunday afternoon and moped, and simply thought about all the things that I don’t have, instead of focusing on what I do have. I might have thought about how my life could have been, instead of focusing on reality. But that was the older, whinier, gayer me. If I could, I’d go back and punch that asshole in the face. In fact, I’ll punch myself now anyway.

Fuck, that kind of hurt. I immediately regret that decision.

But bad moods happen. Bad days happen. Bad months happen. Sometimes, even bad years happen. It’s just something you have to endure, and hope that when it ends, you’ll have a newfound appreciation for life.

Life offers a lot of cool stuff if you’re brave enough to seek it out. But if you’re consumed with things that are out of your control, and find yourself filled with emotions like self-pity or jealousy, for example, then you’re going to overlook those things. That’s really what leads to bad moods. You can say that you don’t have a lot of things going for you, but in reality, you do. You’re just not taking advantage of them.

When you finally do find yourself in a good state of mind, well, you realize how much good shit there is in this world.

And speaking of good shit, it shames me to say that I failed to see Harry Potter during its opening weekend. Not the actual wizard himself (I texted him yesterday to hang out but he said he was busy), I’m talking about the last movie.

Harold Potter

I’ve said this before, but the Harry Potter books played such a pivotal part of my childhood. I obsessed over them. While I have enjoyed the movies, I never loved any of them until I saw the first part of the seventh movie. The previous six films tried way too hard to emulate the books, and in the process lost all sense of originality and creativity.

A true adaptation should stay loyal to the original work, but it should also try to become its own entity. None of the films had done that until film #7. It was a stand-alone great piece of art and I loved it. That’s why I am so excited to see part two, and hopefully I can get on that this week. Plus, seeing a Harry Potter movies is one of the few times I can wear my wizard’s robes in public and not look like a maniac.

Shit, do you think Harry Potter ever sat around and moped, wishing that his life was better? No fucking way. The dude went out on a mission to kill Voldemort and salvage the world.

If he can do it, you can too.

Obsessing over your physical appearance is pointless

Have you ever looked in a mirror and thought, “Wow, is this how the world views me?”

You always have one set image of yourself in your head, and you always pick the best possible looking photo as your default pictures for Facebook, Photo IDs, Twitter, the picture you preemptively select for milk cartons in case you ever go missing, etc. This is because you always want to present the best possible looking version of you.

So when you randomly look in the mirror, and see what you actually look like and what other people see whenever they look at you, it could be surprising.

I’m not necessarily saying that you look a lot worse than what you think, but it’s always different than what we envision in our head. It’s only natural to have an inflated view of yourself, and to expect that you’ll look good in any situation and from any angle. It’s like when you hear your voice on a recorder and you think, “This is what I sound like?!” Same deal.

People that obsess over what they look like are truly wasting their time. What we look like is what we look like. It’s not like teen movies where you take off your glasses and undo your ponytail and suddenly you’re hot.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t try to make yourself as good-looking as you possibly can, but my point is that stressing out over your appearance to the point where it’s actually consuming you is completely nonsensical. There’s a thing called genetics. You inherit certain physical traits from your line of ancestry, and those traits make up our appearance. End of story. The sooner that we acknowledge that, the sooner we could cross that off of the list as one less thing to worry about.

It’s easier said than done. Even I find myself looking into a  mirror whenever I am in the same room as one. I’m not exactly sure why. It’s not that I am insecure with my appearance (I already know that I am gorgeous), or that I am always looking to make slight improvements throughout the day (anyone that carries a comb with them is gay); I just am always curious to see what other people see. Don’t ask me why. It’s almost like I’m a goldfish, and every six seconds I forget what’s going on and what I look like.

Also, changing your physical appearance through plastic surgery is sacrilegious, in my mind. I’m not even religious and I still think that. We were born the way we are. Just accept it. That’s how nature works. And that’s not even considering the dangerous health risks and side effects of surgical alteration.

Additionally, it’s always extremely noticeable when somebody has had work done. It’s not attractive. It’s freaky.

Physical appearance is important, I’m not denying that. When we first lay eyes on somebody, we subconsciously begin to make hundreds of generalizations about this person based solely on what they look like. We label them before they’ve even uttered a word. So whenever you hear somebody say, “Woah, he/she is totally different from what you’d expect,” it just means that they don’t fit the stereotypes based on what they look like. It’s not wrong. We all do it.

And that’s why we all want to look good on Facebook. If we meet someone of the opposite gender that we fancy, we all know that they will seek us out on Facebook. Thus, we want to do our part and make sure that we alleviate any ounce of uncertainty they may have about our physical appearance.

Speaking of which, have you ever met people who say, “Ugh, I don’t look good in photos?” Or “I’m not photogenic at all.” Well, that’s basically another way of saying that they are ugly. At least most of the time.

I say most of the time because there are some rare people out there — and I’ve witnessed this myself —  that actually look much better in real life than they do in photos. Maybe it’s because they have an awkward smile, or because their beauty is no natural that it’s something you can only appreciate in person. Whenever this happens, it’s a pleasant surprise. People assume that Facebook pictures will always be the final factor of determining whether someone is good-looking or not, but, in these cases, it’s really the final factor in determining that you are an idiot for thinking that. It’s great because it’s as if you’re thwarting Facebook, and, at the same time, slapping Mark Zuckerberg in the face.

Again, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t be concerned with what we look like. It matters. But the sooner that you realize that it’s — for the most part — out of your control, you’ll be much better off.