Monday, December 30, 2013

Dear Will Ferrell

If I was really a big fan of yours, I would find your career maddening.  As it is, I find that if you are starring in a movie, there's about a one in four chance that I will find it even slightly entertaining.  I'm not sure if you are just making bad choices, or if your compass on what constitutes a good comedy has been skewed so far off by all the ass kissing you received ten years ago that you just don't have a clue.  What I do know is that you owe everyone an apology for the idiocy that is Anchorman II.  I mean everyone, even the people that didn't see it, because there has been no getting away from it.

That should have been the first clue for everyone that there was going to be a major problem with this movie.  For nine years, everyone pined away, hoping that you would make a real sequel to Anchorman.  I say "real" because don't even try to tell me that Ricky Bobby wasn't a sequel with a different character that acts mostly the same.  You had nine whole years to get this right, but you kept saying that you didn't want to make a sequel.  Then, all of the sudden, you came on Late Night TV in character and announced you would do it.  In a whirlwind of odd appearances and weird commercials, America was inundated with your character and the weird sense of humor you were taking to it.  There was no getting away from Ron Burgundy.

I did not make plans to see this movie.  I enjoyed the first one, and even saw it in theaters.  The problem with it, the same problem I had with Austin Powers and Borat, was that every jaggoff that didn't have a sense of humor of their own imitated the character until all joy had been wrung dry from it.  Alas, the Monday before Christmas was rainy and awful out, and with little else to do on my day off, I agreed to catch a matinee with my sister.  There were several others in the theater, even for a Monday matinee, since many people had taken the week off for the holiday, apparently.  The only reason I knew there were other people was because I walked in while the lights were on.  For the next two hours, there would be no indication of life in that theater, except for when someone walked out before the movie ended.

Maybe you thought you'd be congratulated or idolized for making a comedy with barely any jokes.  You probably fancy yourself the new Andy Kaufman.  You both seem to share the same contempt for your audience.   To have a two hour comedy that isn't the Blues Brothers is hatred enough.  To have at least a half hour of that movie include a side plot at a lighthouse with a very unfunny song to a shark, that does nothing for the supposed plot, that might just be a hate crime. 

I think the main problem I've had with you through the years is that you have two distinct "modes" for your comedy.  You have the innocent man child, prone to fits of rage, as we see in Step Brothers and Elf.  This is, in my opinion, the only time you are actually funny.  You set up jokes, then knock them out, and you are aware that there are such things as escalation for jokes.  The other mode you get is your "Robert Goulet" mode.  Ron Burgundy is just a modified version of the awful Robert Goulet sketches you did on SNL.  They weren't funny then, and they are much less funny now that you've beaten them to death.  It's just pompousness and yelling.  I can get that from Paula Deen, I don't need it from you.

Worst of all, in all of the interviews you give that aren't in character, you seem like a humble, nice guy.  I can't rectify how you can be so funny in some things, and so god awful in others.  You're the man that created Bill Brasky.  You could have retired on that alone.  Instead, you've just gotten older and weirder, like that neighbor guy that sits on his porch and cries all day long. 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Dear Christmas

I know, there's not much worse than a 30 year old complaining about how old he feels.  Well, I'll tell you what I told my cat when he was yelling at me: you shut your whore mouth.

No matter what I try, I can't seem to bring back the feeling of Christmas fervor I had when I was little.  There's probably plenty of reasons why it went away.  Christmas isn't a jack-pot of consumer greed anymore.  It isn't a haven of time off from school and commitments.  I don't have a single minded focus of Christmas and only Christmas to fuel the merriment and the season.  Real life has homogenized it all into a faceless time just like any other, and I find that to be a shame.

The past couple of years I've tried to make things a bit more special.  I set up Christmas lights in the bushes in my yard and on the front porch so when I came home late at night from work I had some holiday cheer shining to welcome me home.  I meticulously collected and perfected a playlist of Motown, Rat Pack, and rock Christmas songs to listen to in the car to get into the mood.  I documented the case where last year I went to the mall I used to frequent to get some nostalgia going in my Christmas shopping.  The total sum of all of these efforts has been jack squat. Maybe if I lived in a snowy climate it would be different.  Maybe you only get that sense of wonder back once you have kids of your own.  I'm not ready for that.

It seems appropriate to write this now, because the last time I had that old Christmasy feeling was exactly ten years ago.  Christmas break 2003 was everything I could have wanted.  I drove home from college, having just finished one of the most fun semesters of my college career.  I was quite taken with a lady, and best of all, I had avoided giving a 2 hour ride back home to a giant nerd I had gone to high school with and had regrettably run into again at college. 

I'd taken all afternoon and evening classes for the past four months, and due to a hectic writing, theater practice, and social schedule, I had truly become nocturnal.  Bedtime was dawn, and I would rise again at the early winter dusk, ready to seize the night.

At that time, my sister was working for a small time newspaper.  She frequented the local library near the paper, despite the fact that, as an English major, she still cannot finish reading a book in under a year.  One day, early in my vacation, as a treat for me she rented the first disk of the miniseries Band of Brothers, knowing my love for World War II history and somehow foreseeing my future adoration of Simon Pegg.  So, instead of watching reruns of MASH all night as I did in high school when I couldn't sleep, I would watch episodes of B.O.B. from the time my family went to sleep until my father woke for work at dawn.

I have truly fond memories of the Christmas tree twinkling in the corner as I was enthralled with what would become one of my favorite productions.  I'd snack on Christmas cookies, bathed in flashing holiday bliss and televised mortar flashes.  By morning, the disk would be done.  I'd leave it on the table, and the next disk would be there when I woke at dusk and my sister was home from work.  I spent time with my family, and did the "home for vacation" thing of visiting others that were back.  I couldn't tell you what I got for Christmas that year, but I do know the experience itself was better than anything I could have gotten that was wrapped or bought.  In two years, I'd have a full time job, responsibilities, and much less time to sit back and enjoy everything I did that December.  Even that twinkling tree broke after that year, and none of the replacements have ever been as good. 

The only regret I had that year was that one morning, after finishing a disk and having breakfast with my father, I thought it would be a good idea to take a trip to my old high school and say hi to some of the teachers I had liked.  It was the first time I'd gone back there since I had graduated two years previously.  So, there I was found in clothes I'd lounged in on my couch all night, dark circles under my eyes from not having slept yet.  I walked up to the building to the odd looks of students that maybe remembered me as an upperclassman, and teachers that wondered what in the hell I was on, and what I wanted. 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Dear Huy Fong Foods

Please understand that I take a great risk writing to you about your beloved Rooster Sauce.  The Oatmeal is a crimelord and has put forth an edict that no other blogger can ever associate themselves with your product.  I cannot stay silent, though.

There was a time, not long ago, that we as Americans said that we would not give in to the demands of terrorists.  Surely, if the people living around your factory are complaining of the fumes from the pepper processing that you do to make the delicious Sriracha sauce, then your workers, who would be much closer to the process would be affected.  Seeing as the local hospitals are not choked with blinded, gagging Huy Fong workers, I think there is something else at play here.

There also must be a better option than closing down production, even partially.  There are no factories that are far enough from residential areas that you can move to?  Your sauce is one of the most popular condiments behind ketchup and mustard, and I have never seen a knockoff product.  There is no possible way your company is not raking it in.  Maybe a story will help you understand what you mean to me, and to everyone.

The year was 2008. A young, naive Greg with much more hair on his head but less fire in his belly went to a Vietnamese restaurant with his friends James and Lisa.  Back then, Greg was scared of hot food.  His put sweet Thai chili sauce on everything, because it was just spicy enough to convince him that he wasn't a coward.  At this restaurant, James encouraged Greg to try a dish called BiBimBap.  He was handed a sizzling bowl of rice, beef and egg, and also a ketchup bottle filled with orange fury.  One squirt was all he allowed himself, but upon tasting the beauty, he unloaded on the dish.  It was not too hot, but much more than he was typically comfortable with, and so very tasty.  Greg tried his best to find this sauce at the store later, and instead fond a red bottle with a rooster on it.

That night, Greg added the sauce to a pasta dish he had cooked.  An hour later, his housemate The Todd-Faced Killah came home to find Greg laying on the couch, sweating profusely.  Unsubstantiated rumors also claim that Greg was also speaking flawless Sumerian, and that he had translated the Voynich Manuscript on the wall with his own blood.  All reports state that the Sriracha fever hit a head, and at that point, the old weak Greg burned to the ashes that spawned me.

If that story isn't enough for you to keep production going, then how about I go with threats.  I know you bow to those.  Your sauce, while good on everything, is no longer hot enough to burn away that anger in my belly.  I've started making my own sauce, and now you leave me no choice but to publish the recipe for all.  If you go down, we shall self sustain.

Greg's Phoenix Sauce
prep time: 4 months     Cook time: 7 hours

4-5 cloves of garlic
2 pounds of peppers so hot that Minka Kelly is jealous of them
1/4 cup of malt vinegar
1 boom box
A copy of a mix tape that you made for a boy or girl you were crushing on in high school
1 blender or food processor
A container strong enough to withstand the hoary fires of the underworld

1)  Grow a damn garden.  It's not hard, it's rewarding as hell, and everything tastes better.  Plant garlic, and plant lots of different kinds of peppers.  I grow habaneros, jalopenos, anchos, Biker Billy's habaneros, fish peppers, sweet italians, bells, chiles, cherries, and cayenne. 

2) Once those are all grown and ready, get out the boom box and throw that old mix tape on.  Yeah, that's bringing back some memories.  Probably not alot of good ones either.  Just sit there, and let them wash over you.  Once you've heard the tape, both side A and B in full, you're ready to start.  Restart side A, and get out a cutting board.

3) Cut the stems off of the peppers, but leave the seeds.  That's where babies come from.  Throw the peppers in the blender.  I use a Vitamix.

4)Peel the garlic clove, and add it to the blender.

5) Right about now, the mix tape is probably hitting the song "Glycerine" by Bush.  How do I know?  Everyone put that on a mix for someone they liked.  Soak in that awkward teenage angst by listening to both sides of the mix tape three more times. 

6) Pour the vinegar over the peppers and garlic.

7) Blend it all up until that sauce is silky smooth.

8) Tear up a little when the Goo Goo Dolls come on the mixtape.  Yes, you put them on there, and you have to live with that.  This will make you stronger in the end.  Remember when that song played in the eighth grade Valentine's dance, and none of the girls would dance with you because you were so very awkward?  Oh, you didn't remember that?  Now you do.  Let your tears season the sauce.

9) Take the blended sauce and put it in a pot.  Bring it to a boil, then turn it down to medium for 5 minutes.  Take off the stove and let it cool.

10) Some recipes tell you to let the sauce ferment for a week in a glass jar.  I am not patient enough for that.  I need fire and I need it now.  Pour the sauce into an easy squirt bottle while the Wallflowers sing "One Headlight".  The tears are weakness that you don't need in you anymore.  You must get rid of them so you are strong enough for the sauce.

11)  Put the sauce in the fridge to thicken.

12) Consume and be joyful.  It is fresher than you could ever hope, and tastier than you can ever dream.  

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Mauling of the Faithful 2013

For those of you that aren't fans on the Facebook page, you really should join.  Here is the amalgamation of all of the Maulings of the Faithful for this year.

Leigh Dowdle Profit, under the psuedonym of Starla Pippenshaw, perpetrated an elaborate series of events through six states and over a period of three years in order to ensure that a 37 year old widower named Brian Duritz would be standing at the corner of 3rd and Maynard in Portland, Oregon on May 27, 2013, just so she could drive by and make fun of his harelip.

Kevin Johnston sold the rights to the T is his last name to both Ice T and Mr. T.  When they disputed the ownership, he locked them both in a shipping container with one knife and told them to settle it themselves.

To answer the question posed in song by Barry Mann, Zach Rothstein put the Bomp in the Bomp She Bomp She Bomp.  And by that, I mean Zach punched a seagull out of the air and tried to make it into a hat.

Tom Barnes created the character Jar Jar Binks.

Jamie Dowd Latsko is the reason why Dominos can no longer guarantee delivery in 30 minutes or less after an elaborate Home Alone style set of booby traps left six delivery people wounded.

Eric Wilder has a lifetime ban from IHOP for a misunderstanding over what the “P” stood for in the sign.

Jamie Book once tackled a deer and rode it like a toboggan down a snowy hill.

Michy Aja has never been kind, and has never rewound.  Blockbuster went under because of her.

Regina Harris Lee has never left a penny in the leave a penny, take a penny.

Col Kpati denies that taxicabs are a real thing.

Timothy Dodge thought it would be funny if he had an archrival named Chevy.  Chevy Chase has not been amused, and has sworn a blood vendetta, which only spurs Tim on further.

Hilary Brooks has never said a word containing the letter “E” in conversation.  That’s mainly because she only mutters the word “blood” just loud enough for people to hear.

Jonathan and Christopher Beasley are the illegitimate children of Hall and Oates.  Hall was the mother.

Brian Massey has lobbied for years to get the nickname “Sassy Massey”.  The third time he was rejected, he burned down his own house in protest.

James King is an elaborate disguise of Eddie Murphy.

Joe Flannigan was once thrown out of Sea World for biting an otter on the face.  He was later given a medal of honor when psychics revealed that otter would have gone on to assassinate Elijah Wood for starring in the Flipper movie.

Liam Webb still enters soapbox derby races for the sole purpose of crashing into other carts and ruining the dreams of the children that built them.

Jordan Free is not free.  He is quite costly, in fact.

Ellen Kathryn makes little figurines out of the hair she brushes off of her pets.  She loves those figurines more than she ever loved the actual pets.

Tobey Mitchell is The Noid.

John Olson reviews different kinds of moist towelettes on Youtube.  He’s made millions of dollars doing so, and regularly forces the less fortunate to dance for his entertainment.

Lynne Fletcher was the person who convinced the band Three Dog Night to break up.

To this day, Dori Gregory will violently defend the claim that the Harry Potter book series is based off of a trip she took to Woolworth’s in 1999.

Dennis Fleming won’t even bother to read this sentence until I include the phrase “devil monkey”.

Laura Redfield has slaughtered millions of defenseless animal crackers.  She’ll be tried for her war crimes in January.

Theresa DeLizza has never blinked.  She says it’s a sign of weakness, and weakness is for Swedes.

Tomas Corazon was known as Hershel Pemis until he changed his name.  

Derrick Gray is the all time high scorer in Dance Dance Revolution due to his pioneering of a new form of the Running Man.  If he did even one move incorrectly, it could kill thousands.  Luckily, he’s never done anything wrong.

Catharine Chow Yoo and InSung Yoo are terrified that the cartoon strip “Garfield” will come true, because they’ve invested their life savings in Stouffer’s frozen lasagna.

Timothy Lankes has the unfortunate distinction of being the only person in America to have had a bowl cut, mullet, and rat tail haircut all at the same time.  They say he achieved enlightenment, though.

Gwyneth Whieldon has gone “Single White Female” on a Boston Crème Pie on eighteen separate occasions.

Errick Tirell is responsible for every movie Steven Segal has ever made. 

Nico Danks and Did Langrock think their names are sooooo coooooool.

Tenley Martin has broken my heart on no less than 300 occasions.  She says it is better than a cup of coffee to her.

Hannah Piper Burns, Stephanie Marie O’Brien and  Mary Kate Schneider Truesdale have had an ongoing battle on who can have the longest name.  While Mary Kate is currently winning, Stephanie is paying off a judge to change her name to Ricki Ticki Tembo No Sar Rembo Per Mer Uchi Pip Peri Pembo.  Hannah will retaliate by adding “Smith” to her last name, because she doesn’t really get the rules. 

Libby Davis ghost wrote the book “Where The Red Fern Grows” because she felt not enough children were crying in the world.

Elizabeth Anne O’Sullivan, Antonia Scholz and Michelle Trotter Milne are the three most frightening women under 5 foot tall I have ever met.  One day they will join forces and take over the country, or just team up to get something off of a high shelf.

David McKenna will never love anything as much as he loves the Taco Bell Gordita Crunch.

True story: Nancy Stange once tried to poison me in a Red Robin.  Luckily for me, the antidote was delicious hamburgers and bottomless fries.
Monica Cavanaugh is the result of genetic testing on hummingbirds.  She is why the Geneva Convention happened.

Chris Biller dresses up like Captain Hook and “invades” Long John Silver restaurants for the sexual thrill.

Corey Kehew’s favorite band, food, and arts and craft supply is Black Eyed Peas.  He just loves to let them fall through his hands while he giggles at them.

Karen Donnelly has perfected the ability to “mind Meld” with gummi bears.  She has only ever used this talent for evil.  

Jered Hannawald wants to know what love is, and he wants you to show him.  This is not a request.

Jade Marie Vega sends postcards to strangers.  All of them have a picture of a falcon on the front, and say, “If you stop loving me, I will kill you” on the back.

David Gregory was named Smith Campbell but he hates last names.

Jen Greenwood  once called out of work to play Sonic the Hedgehog for seven hours straight.  It wouldn’t have been a problem if she wasn’t the only air traffic controller at her airport.

Margaret Alldredge will kill again.

Katie Sill has tried for three years to start a Prince tribute band, just so she can finally wear velour in public without shame.

Brooke Summers and Tim Pumplin run the best hostel/pancake house one drunk guy on Yelp has ever been to.

Lisa McQuigan is the devil.  Nothing else cute.  She is the dark lord.

Kelly Vance Klocek invented Crocs as a form of birth control, but no one ever caught on.

Chris Law loves disco.  

Becky Bradford wanted to be the new Paula Deen, up until Paula Deen didn’t want to be the old Paula Deen.  Now Becky wants to be the new Greg Gumbel.

Christopher Neu became obsessed with rhymes, so he moved into a shoe, played a blue kazoo, went to the new zoo, and then infected himself with the flu.  If anything, he showed commitment. 

Every song Amanda Conway has ever written has been about the movie Glengarry Glenn Ross.

Angela Desmond was driven mad when she couldn’t figure out the difference between stalgtites and stalagmites.

Bodine Boling still mails dead Welshmen to my house, after all of these years.

Ryan Protos tickles people when he is stressed out.  This led to his firing from the Bomb Squad.

Annelise Montone holds the distinction of being the only native born American to have slapped every major guest star from the tv show Friends.  

William Chris Ward sued the professional wrestling group WCW over stealing his initials, and sued Macho Man Randy Savage over stealing his wardrobe.  

Scott and Ted Humburg were the inspiration for the character of Station in Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey, mainly because they constantly run into each other trying to fuse into a SuperHumburg. 
Julie Stricker, from what I can gather, is either the most hardcore person I hope to meet, or is the most hardcore person I hope I never meet.

Jodi Bailey, make up your damned mind about when you want to use the letter Y.  Everyone is getting tired of this shit.

Jessica Chappell dances like no one is watching.  We are all watching, and most of us are judging.  The Cabbage Patch is not acceptable.

Lisa Burkman Solier.   Nerd.

Kyle Reedy ate a live goldfish on a bet.  What he doesn’t know is that it’s still in there, and it’s stealing all of his vitamins.  He’s going to get scurvy any day now.

Clare Zuraw will only use onomatopoeia to communicate.

Heather Davidson Friel hates me so much she put a curse on my family, even though she is my cousin.

Natalie Litofsky, like Peter Pan, has no shadow.  Unlike Peter Pan, she framed hers for arson and it’s been in prison for years.

Matthew Mebert…oh Matt, you just makes things too easy.  Please…just walk away.

Katie Giraulo has been described as human tennis elbow.  The President has since apologized.

Keith Robertson is just a sack of skin filled to the brim with chiggers.

Laura Brockmeyer does not believe in the sky.

Jolene Schafer believes that she derives her powers from a Nintendo Power pack.  She carries it wherever she goes. 

Philip Walters’ idea of rebellion is occasionally spelling his first name with two “L”s on official documents.

Katie Cavallo eats kittens marinated in mushrooms.

Layla Calderon once tried to hijack a steamliner and crash it into Pauley Shore’s house.  Unfortunately for her, he lives in Nebraska, spending his days reliving Son In Law.

Michael Asplen worked for four months as an understudy to Corey Haim on a Reno, Nevada production of The Apple Dumpling Gang.  He calls that time period “The only time I was ever really alive”

Morgan Booz driving a moped made of turkey bones.  She made it during a nightmare.
Sarah Fisher has held my last name hostage for the last thirty years.  Her demands are a vat of lime jello and a strapping Norwegian man named Fleegor.
There is nothing I can make up about Ben Carioso or Joel Van Goor that is more off base than anything they’ve actually done.

Emily Teresa runs a dice game every Thursday at the Chuck-E-Cheese.

Hanna Gribble told me she would hit me with her car if she wasn’t worried I would dent it.

Jesse Howell steals eggs from bird’s nests and uses them in his perverted rituals

Jordan Bradford has thirty seven children with fifty two different women.

Steve Nickerson’s only love is a manila envelope he calls Puddin’ Face.

Sarah Mattes dresses like a geisha and tries to serve people McDonald’s apple pies at funerals.

Chris Layman funded every movie remake in the past five years.

David Wendig sang the definitive version of “Inna Gadda Davida” and has never spoken since.

Brittany Potts wrote a pilot for a show called “Potts and Kettle”.  It’s a show about her as a police woman, interacting with her partner Detective Agatha Kettle.  It was bought by Fox but never filmed, because it was needlessly racist.

Heather Rhodes Comegys smiled for the first time at the age of 28, when she saw a pigeon sucked into an airconditioner.  The pigeon owed her money.

Jordan Riccio wears a cape everywhere he goes. 

Joyce Phelps writes fan fiction about Debbie Gibson concerts.

James Yamakawa coats himself in grease and tries to break the sound barrier on slides at public playgrounds.
Benjamin Kloch still believes that Welcome Back Kotter is a documentary.

Jefe Tolbert roleplays as Mary Poppins.

Maggie Small Ferguson has made a lucrative living picking fistfights with Art Gallery tour guides.

Melanie Evans Curro is the chupacabra.

Sharon Rothblum Schlenger once ate seven pounds of marshamallows in a sitting.  It was regarded as the best Christmas mass her church had ever seen.

Laura and Erin McSpadden are part of the third best Heart coverband in North Carolina.

Andrea Buntz Neiman and Laura Weinand are destined to have a “Beat It’ style knife fight over the Dewey Decimal System.

Matt Lesley gets very agitated when listening to CCR playing “Have You Ever Seen The Rain”.  He feels like they never listen when he answers “Yes”.

Jaclyn Whittington, no matter how many different wigs you wear or costumes you wear, you will not trick me into getting into your car.

Megan Usilton lures children into her gingerbread house in the woods.

Mike Muszyski is known as the Pierogi King of Utah, but he’s only known as that in Arizona.

Travis Shaw digs holes at night in his backyard, whistling a hearty tune as the neighbors silently weep.

Valerie Sedai refuses to acknowledge that Matthew McConnaughy is a thing.

Elizabeth Friedel practices Krav Maga in case she ever has to fight a nun.  This is her greatest fear.
Vicki Fisher his racist against puppets.
Megan McGilloway has been doing the Neutron Dance constantly for seven years. 

Holly Brownley is convinced that culottes are making a comeback.  She has knitted eighty pairs.
Kurt Lewis was the only child that Supernanny couldn’t handle.  The Dog Whisperer couldn’t help him either.
Jessica Emerson was given the ability to go back in time for five minutes.  She used it to buy some Ecto Cooler.

Monica Cavanaugh has the habit of licking lightposts as she passes them.  She is now immune to all disease.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Dear Readers

If I were normal, I wouldn't do this.

A normal person would have stopped writing this blog a long time ago.  They might not have even started it.  Really, who in their right mind would continue to write a humor blog when, after two years, it has merely doubled it's audience from the fourth month of its existence?  Who would take the time every week to write a thousand or two thousand words about a topic they came up with, mostly on the fly?  Who willingly subjects themselves to the scrutiny of dozens of strangers?  Where is the motivation coming from?

This is not a complaint against my audience.  I love my readers, and that isn't lip service.  Those of you that read the blog, and like the blog, are fantastic.  You get on the Facebook page, and you interact with whatever lunacy or idiotic thought I throw up there.  Many of you have known me in real life, so you understand that maybe I'm not the most well balanced person, and you get where my humor comes from.  That doesn't stop you from sharing the blog with your friends and family, who don't know me, but still sometimes get a kick out of what I do. 

One of my very good friends once told me that while most of our friends were really good at one thing, I had a whole bunch of things that I was ok at.  He meant it as a compliment, and I took it as such.  I am mediocre to ok at a fair number of things.  I had a terrible band in high school, but I loved every minute of it.  High school theater, as cringe inducing as it can be, was like a drug when I found it.  Sports did the same thing.  If it had been up to me, I would have just been in college to act in every play I could, and sing in the acapella group I was in.  I was never great at any of these things, but I was at least passable.  I took it personally every time I didn't get a part, because that was one less chance to do what I was good at, and what I wanted to be doing.  Thinking about it, it's almost unsettling how much time and effort I put into things like the blog, things that will give me even just a tiny modicum of happiness. 

The motivation for me is there.  Kevin Pollak calls it the "Hey, Look at Me" Disease.  Doctors might call it some form of depression mixed with a need for validation, but Kevin's sounds funnier, and isn't far off, so we'll go with that.  I've always been happiest when I'm entertaining people.

I'm a person that, for the most part, can't do small talk.  I understand the concept, and know how the execution works.  I can even do it, to some success.  I don't enjoy it though.  It's not something I am good at.  I can shotgun emotion and feelings at people through music, performance, or writing, but I am terrible one on one.  It's one of the myriad reasons I don't have relationships, and definitely one of the reasons I cling tight to the friends I have had for over a decade.  They know me, and they admit that they know how to deal with me.  It is so much less work for me than trying to be likeable for new people.  See?  I find it easier to blast my feelings in public than anything remotely intimate.  This is the person you are dealing with for your weekly jollies. 

This is a thank you for the past two years.  For the people I know, and people I have never met, that come back and read what I've written.  It's a thank you for those that put up with me talking about this ad nauseum, like it's something that is important to everyone.  I understand it isn't but it is to me, and I appreciate you humoring me.  This is a thank you for putting up with the mania I put out when it's there, and for the maudlin, pandering, begging for attention that seeps out of my needy brain.

Hopefully this builds some good will before The Mauling of The Faithful later this week.