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Archives: Feb 2009

A bird is trying to eat my face

Note: I’m a columnist for the Reader Weekly, an alt-weekly newspaper in Duluth, MN. Every Monday I post a new column.

 

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I don’t mean to frighten you, dear reader, but I just woke up to a bird pecking at my window. “Bonk. Bonk. Bonk, bonk.” The bird is four inches tall, with brown feathers and a light yellow beak. It is obviously trying to find a way inside so it can eat me.

Once upon a morning dreary, while I pondered, drunk and bleary, over the dozen beers I had consumed the night before. While I snored, loudly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, from a flesh-eating bird gently rapping, rapping at my window decor.

Don’t panic! The glass on the old window is thick. It will take at least four minutes for the beast to chip through it with its razor-sharp beak. Once it does, it will devour my flesh and use my skull as the basis for a nest. It’s times like these that I wish the government allowed us to keep nuclear weaponry in our homes. Damn you, Obama! Forget the economy and come look at this damned bird! It has tenacity!

Presently my bowels grew weaker; I stifled an instinct to throw my sneaker, “Bird,” said I, “or Chick, truly your forgiveness I implore; But the fact is I was napping, and you’re bugging the shit out of me with your rapping, Please stop your tapping, tapping on my window decor.”

The future is lame. Water balloons are not

Note: I’m a columnist for the Reader Weekly, an alt-weekly newspaper in Duluth, MN. Every Monday I post a new column.

 

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This economy is like a monkey locked in a microwave. No one can get the microwave open or switch it off, and rather than allowing us to turn our heads, the major news outlets babble on endlessly about it, almost forcing us to watch as the facial features of the monkey melt into goo.

Well I say enough is enough, reader! The goddamn monkey is dead, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Are you a surgeon? Are you able to mold a melted monkey mug back into its former shape? Of course not. We’re just regular folk. We work in offices and warehouses, not monkey hospitals. There is no shame in closing our eyes and thinking about sexy things instead.

With that in mind, this Pulitzer Prize winning columnist* is not going to follow the sniveling crybaby trend put forth by our media. Sure, that damn monkey is on my mind as much as the rest of you, but complaining won’t help, and neither will forcing ourselves to think about it. In fact, that might make things even worse. We need to get that monkey out of our heads for at least a few moments each day. With that in mind, the remainder of today’s column will consist only of tips for how to win a water balloon fight.

*Not true.

Valentine’s Day FAQ

Note: I’m a columnist for the Reader Weekly, an alt-weekly newspaper in Duluth, MN. Every Monday I post a new column.

 
What’s the true meaning of Valentine’s Day?
The holiday is named after a priest who was rejected by his mistress, and pledged his love by cutting out his heart with a knife and sending it to her in a box. So Valentine’s Day is kind of like the movie “Se7en”, except Saint Valentine never won an Oscar for best editing.

How is it possible that he tore out his own heart and still had the ability to wrap and mail a package afterward?
Shut up! It’s religious! Believe it!

Does Paul have a lover?
No, he does not. Women tend not to be attracted to 29-year-old office temps who treat state unemployment workers like naive relatives.

Does Paul have someone he doesn’t care for but whom will still have sex with him on Valentine’s Day?
Not anyone who’s worth a $40 plate of ravioli at a local restaurant.

Is this still an appropriate event to buy Paul a gift?
Yes. Whenever this question is posed – whether it’s during a pretend holiday or at a funeral for one of Paul’s closest friends – the answer is always “yes”. There is no wrong time to buy Paul a present.

You can’t stop an idiot from betting $100

Note: I’m a columnist for the Reader Weekly, an alt-weekly newspaper in Duluth, MN. Every Monday I post a new column.

 
As the kickoff for Sunday’s Super Bowl drew closer, I paced my apartment. It was time for a big decision, and I was nervous. Unemployment had taken its toll on my finances, and I was getting itchy for some spending money. The big game was a chance to win just that, and I had a good feeling about it. But should a man with no money, no job, and barely enough cash left to buy groceries really be betting?

I tried to justify it by thinking up ways to get back the money if I lost. I made bizarre claims to myself about the ease with which I could become a 29-year-old newspaper delivery boy, or how I could sell bags of oranges at freeway entrances better than Mexican immigrants could. Never mind that everyone reads newspapers online now and good oranges aren’t in season for another month. I was sure my landlord would let my February rent slide until mid-March when the “summer oranges” came into season.

There were other ways to save money, I told myself. For instance, did I really need an internet connection? It’s the modern age. I could send my resume to potential employers via text message, or start every morning with a seven-hour drive around town in search of an unguarded wifi connection to steal.