Five Things I Hold To Be Self-Evident

9 Aug

1.  If  You’re a “Vodka” Guy, You Should Really Try Heroin

 You might as well, both will fuck you up pretty quickly and heroin is WAY less disgusting.  Anybody who drinks vodka straight is either a masochist or a Russian, in which case they would, by definition, also be a masochist.  I was dragged to a vodka “tasting” recently and let me begin by saying that the only thing I tasted all night was my own bile trying to escape my body through my mouth in order to distance itself from the wretched, clear, liquid death that was on its way to ravage my internal organs.  Anybody who considers themselves a “vodka connoisseur” should wake up and realize alcohol that tastes like nothing isn’t meant to be sipped and enjoyed, it’s meant to be abused as a means to escape one’s grim reality.  Heroin, after all, offers a much more immediate escape, is much better for your liver, and gives you an equal chance of becoming a successful jazz musician, if you’re into that sort of thing.  After being preached to all night about the differences between French vodka and Russian vodka, the only difference I could discern is that expensive vodka tastes slightly less like “drunk” than cheap vodka does, but still doesn’t work any better than the stuff on the back shelf of the liquor store with quotations around the word “vodka” on the label.  And this whole concept of giving booze as a gift is, I think, just a douchebag passive-aggressive move on the part of the gift-giver.  If you asked me what I wanted for my birthday and I said “vodka,” that’s a cry for help, not a request for alcohol.  This I hold to be self evident: The only word that should precede the phrase “on the rocks” is “scotch”… period, and don’t try to tell me any different.

2.  “Teen Paranormal Fiction” is The New “Teen Mystery-Solving Fiction”

I was at an actual bookstore yesterday… looking for an actual book with actual words in it, and must have spent the better part of half an hour searching for the appropriate section only to finally find it hiding behind the fourteen, count them, fourteen shelves of an area labeled “Teen Paranormal Fiction.”  Does a shitty, unpopular novel automatically become a shitty, popular novel just because your publisher told you to put vampires in it?  Am I missing a market for rewriting Shakespeare with werewolves and shape-shifters instead of Montagues and Capulets?  It would be an easy way to up our nation’s culture quotient, that’s for sure.  And if for some reason you think that vampires are sexy, conflicted creatures… check out “Nos Veratu” next time you’re at a Redbox.  Indeed, it appears as if the days of following a pair of latent homosexual brothers as they travel around the country solving mysteries is over.  I’m sure that the Hardy Boys are holed up in a trailer somewhere, throwing empty bottles of Natural Light at the TV every time a preview for the new “Twilight” movie comes on.  Don’t be bitter, Joe and Frank, it’s not your fault that you’re as human and uninteresting as the rest of us.  If I had a mystery that needed to be solved you guys would be the first… well, near the top of the list of who I would call, somewhere after Scooby Doo, Encyclopedia brown, and Daffy Duck when he’s in detective mode.  This I hold to be self evident: If you’re in the “Teen Paranormal Fiction” section of the bookstore and you’re not a teenager or a paranormal entity… you’ve got issues, man.

3.  Watching a Few Episodes of “Through the Wormhole” Does Not Give You a P.H.D. in Astrophysics

Seriously, I have a very firm grasp on how big the universe is.  No, dude, it’s definitely, like, way bigger than you think it is.  I’d really like you to stop talking to me, right now.  All right, listen, if you still don’t get it, I’ll explain it to you again.  I think that I liked Morgan Freeman much better when he was driving Miss Daisy, before he rose to Justin Beiber status in the television-narration game.  Now it seems as though his purpose on this earth is to provide an excuse for any idiot at the bar to start taking to me about string theory or solar winds or some other subject of which they have next to no understanding.  Thinking that you understand how a black hole functions after watching a forty two minute program on the science channel is like reading the dedication page of “Finnegan’s Wake” and then telling me that you’re a James Joyce scholar.  It’s gotten to the point that I think I’d rather talk about religion at the bar, and the last time that happened my beautiful, atheist nose was broken by some dude’s giant, Baptist ham-fist.  In fact, the next time some slob who couldn’t tell the difference between a neutrino and a Hot Pocket asks me “Hey, so have you seen any of that Through The Wormhole?’… I’m just going to order a lager and a shot of hemlock and be done with it.  I understand now why Galileo, Copernicus, and Bruno were killed for their scientific progressions… it was for our own good.  Imagine, for a second, that the earth was flat, the universe revolved around us, and a man could drink in peace and quiet at his favorite bar and tell me that doesn’t sound appealing.  This I hold to be self evident: The dissemination of knowledge is a noble pursuit, but the dissemination of the illusion of knowledge is getting in the way of my favorite vice… and that’s a problem.

4.  The Decision to Become a Professional Poker Player Will Almost Immediately Make You as Broke as You Are Clueless

Let me wax semantical for a moment (I know that’s not really a word, but don’t be so semantical).  Saying that you do something professionally doesn’t necessarily make it okay to do it all the time (Read: murder, prostitution, heroin, etc.)  Furthermore, just because you’re unemployed and you’re a compulsive gambler doesn’t mean that you should stop looking for real work.  The only professionals in a casino are the six-out-of-tens serving the drinks and the Vietnamese girls dealing blackjack.  Filing a tax return for a pro poker player is enough to keep me from sitting down at a table, the mathematical implications of trying to deduct the cost of an ipod, dark sunglasses, and a hoodie from a negative income are just too daunting for me to get involved in.  I actually had an uncle who called himself a professional poker player for a while.  I later found out that was because it was easier than telling people that he made a living by stuffing tennis racquets in his jacket at The Sports Authority and selling them at country clubs for fifty bucks a piece.  That’s not a joke, by the way… that’s a startling glimpse into the specific type of crazy that runs in my family.  It also goes to show you that you need a real job to support a healthy addiction to playing cards.  You’re gambling habit cannot be the job that supports your gambling habit; you might as well just try to throw together a perpetual motion machine… not gonna happen.  And I don’t want to hear that bullshit about “poker’s not really gambling because you don’t play against the house,” you put all your money in the middle of the table, somebody flips over a card, and you lose all of your money… that doesn’t ever, ever happen when you’re not gambling.  This I hold to be self evident: The drinks at a casino are usually free and the featured desert is almost always humble pie.

5.  Bringing Your Guitar Anywhere Except a Guitar Lesson Is Completely Inappropriate

Almost the very, very last thing that I want to see when I’m at any type of social gathering is you-know-who walking in with a guitar case.  Gosh, I really hope there’s a giant machine gun in there, that would be super.  I don’t even want to hear Jack Johnson sing Jack Johnson songs let alone you with your plaid shirt and your buddy with his plaid shirt playing the spoons.  If I don’t have a ticket stub in my pocket and a decent buzz on, I don’t want to hear ANYBODY playing guitar.  And for Christ’s sake, if I hear even a few bars of an original song, I will not be responsible for my actions.  That’s one step above cranking up your demo at a tollbooth just to see if the attendant likes your music.  Let me tell you something, all that guy hears all day is the ticking of the clock inside his head that counts down the moments until he can stop being a fucking tollbooth attendant for another fifteen hours.  If American Idol has taught us anything, and it hasn’t, it has taught us that if you can’t sing well… check that… if you can’t sing really well, you shouldn’t do it in public.  I also learned at a party, recently, that there’s no such thing as a mediocre harmonica player.  There’s like, thirteen guys on the planet who can play harmonica and everybody else sounds like a walrus trying to choke down an accordion.  This I hold to be self evident: Your guitar playing is to my personal space what your petuli oil musk is to my personal space.


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