Saturday, August 30, 2014

Twins Are Creepy

As children, my sister and I were less The Parent Trap and more The Shining. I think twins are creepy. Why are there two of them? If nature couldn't afford two faces, what else do they share? A soul? If you pinch one, does the other one feel it? Why are they looking at me like that? They have sharp little teeth.

In northern Ohio there is a city called Twinsburg. Every year this city hosts The Twins Day Festival, and the city is flooded with these genetic anomalies and their hangers-on. There is an alarming number of sets of twins that marry sets of twins. Eesh. Have fun spending the rest of your days living out a gimmick, weirdos.

What most people don’t consider is that being a twin is not all Doublemint commercials and switching classes to see if anyone notices. (They don’t.)

Your mother dresses you the same until you figure out how to sharpen a stick to fight her off. 

You spend your whole life with that eerie feeling that someday you are going to stumble across a warehouse full of tanks with thousands more of you floating in suspended animation. Waiting to awaken and spread across the landscape like locusts.

At any given moment someone could wander up to you and start a conversation, only revealing once you are too far in to explain that you aren't your sister that the two of you had some sort of connection that you really should be able to recall and give specific details about. Sorry, confused coffee shop guy.

These are the things I live with every day.

By the way, you are a total jerk if you have ever:

      1. Squinted at each twin in turn, rubbed your eyes, and then asked, “Am I seeing double?”
2. Asked which one is the evil twin
3. Sighed and said, “I always wished I had a twin.”
4. Hit on twins as if they were a unit, or possibly some sort of buy one get one free deal. 
          Contrary to what the porn industry would like for you to believe, we aren't into that.

Having said all of this, I will reveal to you that the sole purpose of this article was to introduce the guest author for my next article. Keep your eyes peeled for my next post, because it will feature the unholy sass of my own personal duplicate.

And by my estimation, she is (give or take) 105 pounds of grade-A biotch. So this should be interesting.

Stay tuned!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Rebecca on Tattoos & Piercings

I like my nose; it is cute like a button.  So I did what BeyoncĂ© told me to and put a ring on it. I felt the same way about my tongue, the entire length of both earlobes, both nipples, and that little nub that stands guard over my ear canal. Tragus?

Most of those piercings went away in favor of things like nursing babies and successfully pronouncing words that contain lingual phonemes*. However, I still think, in general, that piercings and tattoos are pretty neat, suckas.

Why do it? Both tattoos and piercings, by my logic, fall into the category of expressive self-decoration. Throughout history, cultures around the world have altered their bodies for decorative purposes. I would argue that if you have ever straightened your hair, applied lipstick, or even donned an article of clothing for its form rather than its function, then you should probably shut your silly noise hole about tattoos and piercings.

That shit ain’t washin’ off.  The majority of people’s objections to tattoos center on their permanent nature. What could possibly be so important, they wail, that you must INJECT IT INTO YOUR SKIN FOR ALL TIME? I say that is what makes tattoos that much more interesting. Unless your local tattoo artist did a very bad job of explaining things, you are pretty aware that that shit ain’t washin’ off.  This lends a great deal of gravity to the content that you choose.

Tattoos are art. This is what makes me love them.  One must transform an important idea, a facet of one’s personality, or an event that merits commemoration, into a visual symbol. The body as a canvas is a nuanced concept. It is a living surface. The tattoo interacts with the contours of the body, the lines of clothing. Gestures, posture, even muscle tone become part of it.

Although… Having said all of that, I will secretly roll my eyes if you do the following:

1.       Get super drunk at Parents’ Weekend at your daughter’s college and get the footprint of the university mascot tattooed on your butt cheek. Really wild, mom.

2.       Get anything off the wall at the tattoo shop. Ever. Ever. For any reason. Ever. Think for yourself, you lemming.

3.       Get any symbol representing a sports team or band unless you are a member of, own, coach, or manage said organization. I don’t care how big of a fan you are. It’s not okay.

Accept the Consequences. You can do whatever you want. You are free like that. But you live in mixed company. If you decide that your bliss is to pierce everything that protrudes and get “We come in peace” tattooed in runes on your neck, I say go for it. When the diner owner won’t hire you, it isn’t because she is an a-hole. It’s because she is not an idiot. I like tattoos and piercings; you like tattoos and piercings, but there are a lot of Americans who don’t.  And it is money out of the cash register if a customer is put off of his tuna melt because his server looks like that guy from Hellraiser.

*Look it up.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Rebecca Likes Swears

Profanity is tits. “Tits” isn’t profanity, but I wish it was.

I was really, really not allowed to use profanity as a child. I still don’t curse around my parents. I sincerely hope my mother does not read this. Ever. But as I became an avid reader and sometimes writer, I developed affection for the spectrum of words. Profanity makes good things great. It is the MSG of language.

Don’t act all offended. I believe that if you looked into your heart, you would agree with me. Your favorite line from Gone with the Wind contains profanity. Your favorite line from Die Hard contains profanity. The dialogue of The Big Lebowski (according to unlicensed, unbonded sources on the interwebs) includes 271 incidences of the word “fuck,” and it is the best movie ever made.

Now, it should be noted that there is a time and a place for such juicy vocabulary choices. People betray their ignorance when they cannot differentiate betwixt formal and informal communication. I am a high school English teacher. I would never, ever use profanity in the classroom, in written or spoken feedback to students, or in conversation with my colleagues. This blog, by contrast, is quite informal. Its objective is to amuse and possibly generate thought and conversation. You dipshits.

Here are my thoughts on profanity:

·         Words are words. I wish I could mutter “lumos,” all Harry Potter-style and illuminate my darkened bathroom in the dead of night. But sadly, words are just words. “Shit” and “poo” mean the same thing. If the objective of language is to communicate, profanity succeeds in doing so. All profanity that I know has synonyms. None exclusively represents a concept so reprehensible that avoiding it would brighten humanity’s existence in any way.

·         Variety is good. Language is like food, in that it is best to seek out the widest variety of both that can be acquired without causing harm. I would prefer to eschew food that results from force-feeding geese or putting calves in boxes or gutting pregnant fish; meanwhile, extended exposure to profanity fails to even blister the skin.

·         Profanity drinks the blood of its enemies. What do I mean by this? Connotation. Let’s say Ned comes across the word “bitch” in the novel he is perusing. In that instant, he recalls every annoying tsk noise, every lowered brow, every shaken head, every “Oh dear, oh my,” that he has witnessed in association with this word. Then he thinks, “Well damn! The author must really mean what he or she says here.” The more people react, the more of an effect the word will have. It’s brilliant, really. Like Chinese finger cuffs. Or quicksand, maybe.

My editor tells me to add more profanity to make the article edgier.


Fine. I don’t have an editor.

Strangely, I am interested in my readers’ thoughts on this.

I may have been arrogant in putting the apostrophe after the “s” there. Time will tell. Leave a comment!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Personality Quiz

What sort of person are you? Your existence can be summarized and analyzed once and for all by taking this quiz! It makes perfect sense.

1.  Which organization would you most like to join? 

               a)      Cirque de Soleil
               b)      The Borg
               c)       The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

2.  Alcohol and peer pressure are most likely to induce you to:

              a)      Eat gum from the underside of the bar
              b)      Get the lyrics of “Danny Boy” tattooed on your back
              c)       Marry a drifter

3. You would rather visit:

              a)      Oz
              b)      Middle Earth
              c)       Narnia

4. Which clouds are the cutest? 
              a)      Cirrus
              b)      Cumulus
              c)       Stratus

5. If you were going to catfish someone, you would pose as:

              a)      Me
              b)      A black market art dealer
              c)       President Obama

6. What is the best thing about David Bowie?

              a)      His music
              b)      The Labyrinth
              c)       The fact that you can’t tell if he is a boy or a girl and you LIKE IT!
               (okay, b and c are pretty much the same)

Mostly A’s:

You will have no idea what to do with yourself once this hipster thing is over. Go crouch behind a food truck, stroke your handlebar mustache, and listen to Sun Kil Moon.  I loathe you.

Mostly B’s:

You are the worst kind of person. If people were places, you would be Flint, Michigan. Sit down. Make a list of the last five major life decisions you made. Then go back and do exactly the opposite.

Mostly C’s:

You have the class and subtlety of a set of trailer hitch testicles. Let’s be best friends.

Please Note: There is no actual correlation between the questions and, well, anything. It was just a thinly-veiled excuse to insult you. Although you should definitely let everyone know which one you were in the comments.