Sticks and stones
As a guy who grew up with an unusual name which can be scoffed at, confused, inverted, changed at the speaker’s whim, easily rhymed with derogatory terms, needs repeating several times on the phone, out-right refused by listeners because it’s different, gotten wrong by peers, teachers, coaches, people taking food orders, etc. I feel I can speak from a place of experience to modern parents about their penchant for creative names.
As my older brother tells it, my parents wanted two kids: a boy and a girl. When my mom became pregnant the second time, they decided Brittany would be a lovely name. But then I came down the shoot, brazenly waving my phallus about with no regard to their well-laid plans.
When I sought confirmation to his story, my folks usually found pressing business in another room. I think one time they even sent me to Tennessee.
I don’t want to sound whiney or bitter. I love my name, it feels like me and occasionally my day is brightened when I hear a fresh, dirty version of it. But when I read a story in USA Today on a family that named their kid Astravaganza, I couldn’t sit still.
Parents, especially celebrities: These are people you are naming; tiny people who might grow to be big people if they don’t die from repeated kicks to the crotch before the second grade. Consider them and not your ego before you send little Sherwood Bangya to his first day of school.
Will wonders never cease?
People do lots of silly things when they’re drunk. Sometimes they get married or pregnant, get into a fight or fired from work, wake up next to someone ugly (God help me, must be quick and silent) or wake up next to someone out of their league (Sweet. Ass!).
But how many times has being drunk saved your life?
Thirty-two-year-old Phil Stoker had one of those solo drunks when a man becomes very introspective, when the defenses are down and no ideas are unjustly judged. The kind of night when only your pet sees you standing naked in front of the mirror, doing the windmill and giggling to yourself. And your pet doesn’t mind, so you shave your testicles on a whim.
I know, as familiar as an old sweater. But for Phil, it wasn’t like smelling mom’s home cooking, it was like being told “just wait until your father gets home” and then he gives you testicular cancer.
I’ve already reported drinking beer helps you learn and now it’s proving better than Lassie. Had Phil waited for a helpful collie to start barking at his groin, he’d likely have been a dead man. But because beer in its infinite wisdom guided his hand, he found the cancer in its early stage and crushed it. Not like that, that’s terrible. What’s the matter with you?
Cancer cost Phil one testicle but that one testicle can swing proudly along with Phil’s confident strut because beer came into their lives like a superhero and saved the day.
Of course, beer’s every result is not pretty and though it seems so, even beer isn’t perfect. If you’ve ever had a few beers, you know at some point, you’ll need facilities. Or if you’re a guy, just about any open space because peeing outside is a God-given right to men.
The fine legislature and townsfolk of Victoria, British Columbia know this and given Canada’s inclination for super-politeness they wondered maybe it would be OK, you know, if all you bar patrons and homeless people would please stop urinating on everything that isn’t presently in motion if we promise to provide you with stylish, open-air, outdoor urinals that cost $60,000 each will you stop? Please? Sorry.
As thoughtful and generous as that is, Canada is making a grave error and not just financially, by putting the equivilant of a brand new BMW on every street corner and inviting the nightlife to defile it.
The social and behavioral consequences run much deeper. Now a tree or bush won’t be good enough, a homeless man will turn his nose up at a dumpster and children will refuse the lake or public pool. The government is unwittingly creating a spoiled new class.
It’s true, it’s already happening. Police are working later and traditional public restrooms will all have secutiry guards to stay open 24 hours. Citizens are so uppity they won’t pee without an attendant offering breathmints, cologne and bodily protection. Even restaurants are “allowed” to stay open late now, just to cater to drunks who have to pee. Oh thanks for “allowing” us to stay open later. How very kind. How very progressive.
This… is socialism, and it’s right outside our door.
Sex columnist Ian Kerner and neuroscientists Ogi Ogas and Sai Gaddam have broken new ground in women’s sexuality. They say women enjoy sex as much as anybody and want plenty of it.
The key is aesthetics. Women are attracted to beauty, but not solely and not in the sense we men take it. They seek beauty in mental stimulation and connection. They want to feel desired.
No problem. According to this, I should be having sex right now. All of us should. Just throw open a window and start desiring, you’re gonna need a bouncer to deal with the line. This is too easy.
But to truly capture a woman, Ogas said, you must give her feelings of permanence. That this isn’t lust she’s feeling, but a wellspring of mutual love to which he will return to drink again and again. Women want the fairy tale; they want Orlando Bloom in prancy, elfy Legolas tights.
No need to panic yet. More than six billion people and the fact that Orlando isn’t a shriveled pink raisin stand as testimony that he hasn’t been working alone. We can still do this.
“The male sexual brain is like a single toggle switch, whereas the female sexual brain is like the cockpit of an F1 fighter jet,” Gaddam said.
Damn. OK, we’re pretty good at Xbox, we can handle a cockpit.
“…A woman can be physically turned on and mentally turned off at the very same time…”
I don’t understand, we’re not doing this?
“There’s a lot of conversation that goes on among women about erotic stories about the inner feelings of the characters.”
You’ve lost me, I’m going to masturbate.
“Male erotica is a solitary enterprise, and female erotica is a social enterprise,” Ogas said.
I’m listening again.
“Women enjoy reading about two heterosexual men having sex.”
It’s a wonder we were ever born. I’m out.
Same old story
It’s the same for every young man growing up. Whatever it was, a speeding ticket, a neighbor’s broken window or every kid’s Holy Grail, saving up for your first car, suddenly your parents balked at the handouts. It was time for you to get a job.
Later, you wanted to live off campus while in college and you had to pay rent. Of course you need lots of beer money, drugs are expensive and sometimes you sober up enough to realize you’re hungry.
After school, you find a better job and meet a special girl your mom would like. You even convince her that sex with you is a good investment of her time.
Before you know it you have a family and a home. You’ve matured and wisely tucked away money in a 401k and what’s this? You can refinance your mortgage? Hell yeah, like a boss.
But suddenly the economy tanks, your retirement plan evaporates and with it, your family and home. Now you, 61-year-old Zaprian Lazanov of Bulgaria, find yourself ess-faced and hanging out with your buddy Lyubomir Todorov.
Through the natural order of things, Lyubomir cuts off your penis with his samurai sword. He’d been couch surfing for long enough and this was the last straw. This new penis business ain’t gonna pay for itself, Lyu. Get a damn job.
It’s the circle of life, guys, but I’m only just graduating. I’ve got some time.