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Posted by on Feb 14, 2019 in Blog, Essays, Personal | 0 comments

What’s the Worst Date You’ve Ever Been On?

 

 

Happy Valentines Day!

Let’s do something different.  Today, we’re going to have a little fun.  We’ve earned it, right?  On this special occasion, we’re going to try and recall the absolute worst dates of our lives.

I considered asking my faithful readers to post stories about their best dates.  It is Valentines Day, after all.  Thing is, the very best dates either lead to weddings, or if they’re truly amazing — maybe really wild and happened at the end of the night which might best remain unspoken.

So instead, let’s find some common ground and focus on the worst dates we’ve ever had.  Everyone’s been on a bad date, so we should all be able to play along.

I got married at age 29.  That means I spent about ten years playing the dating game.  Like most everyone, I went out on some good dates and some bad dates.  Most of them, I don’t remember much.

But I sure remember a Saturday night that happened sometime in 1987.

My worst date happened when I was around 25.  I met a girl somewhere, I forgot where exactly.  Attracted to the girl, I gave her my phone number and asked to call if she wanted to go out sometime.  To my surprise, she called just a few days later.  We talked for a few minutes and agreed that I’d pick her up Saturday night and take her out to dinner.  We may even have discussed going to a movie, as well.  I think Platoon had just been released.

Saturday comes around and I’m supposed to pick her up promptly at 6.  I get into my car and the piece of shit won’t start.  The bastard battery was dead.  Frantic, I tried getting a jump start but didn’t have any jumper cables.  Utterly desperate for transport and the clock ticking fast to 6, I called up my friend, Iranian Mike, a gambling buddy of mine who lived about a mile away.  I begged him to borrow his car for the night.  He said okay.  Iranian Mike even agreed to drive his car over and let me have it so I wouldn’t be late for my date.  Man, what a pal.  I think he might have owed me some money, so this made us even.

When Iranian Mike pulled into my apartment complex, I couldn’t believe my eyes.  He drove a dark blue Oldsmobile.  A Cutlass.  It was filthy.  There was dog hair all over the seats.  He had a small Shitzhu and the dog rode in the car all the time.  It was summer in Texas, so the dog shedded like crazy.  Worse, Iranian Mike’s car had a flat tire a few days earlier and was riding on one of those small donut-shaped emergency tires that was only intended as a temporary replacement to make it to a service station.  Iranian Mike tossed me the keys and told me to bring it back in one piece.

I can’t even fathom what must have gone through the girl’s head when I pulled in to pick her up, driving that dark blue Oldsmobile Cutlass of a shitbox with dog hair all over the seats and a tiny tire that made the car pull off to one side.

Hey, the night was still young.  Then, things went downhill from there.

I feel bad not remembering the girl’s name, right now.  So, I have to call her “the girl.”  If you’re reading — sorry girl.  She listened to my sob story about the car not starting and having to borrow a friend’s car at the last second.  I think she kinda’ appreciated the effort.  She even believed me for a second.

We pulled into one of the best Italian restaurants in North Dallas, Lombardi’s on Lower Greenville.  This was my go-to place.  Great food.  Live jazz on weekends.  I’d even made a dinner reservation in advance.  What a gentleman.  A player.

The next 90 minutes were excruciating.  Ever been in a confined space, trapped in a sit-down situation, and within 5 minutes you know it’s already a disaster?  How about this:  Ever been crucified?  That was this date.

We had absolutely nothing in common.  I mean, nothing.  Everything she liked and enjoyed, I detested.  Every topic I brought up, she took no interest in.  But, she had a great ass.  Man, I couldn’t get the check fast enough.

We both went through the motions.  We gave it the old college try.  I remember as we were looking across at each other one of those cozy two-top tables meant for couples truly in love, recalling that many odd relationships start off sailing on rough seas before calmer waters.  Indeed, many love affairs do begin when the two people can’t stand each other.  But this wasn’t that.  She didn’t dislike me.  And I didn’t dislike her.  The date pretty much just ended up like walking up to a stranger on a bus and saying, “hey, let’s hang out together for a couple of hours.”  What would one expect?  Rolling the dice like that, what are the odds it’s going to work out and you’re going to keep hitting your point?  Dating is/was just a numbers game.  Keep tossing and eventually, you hit the 7.  But along the way, there’s a few boxcars and snake-eyes.  This date wasn’t like crapping out.  It was like misfiring with two dice bounding off the table.  A miscue.  A bad roll.

The waiter brought over the check and by this time there was no chance in hell we were going to that movie.  Even if I really wanted to see Platoon.  All I wanted to do was pack her into the passenger seat with all the grey dog hair and wheel her back to her street, prop open the side door, and slow down enough to let her get a running start when the stilettos hit the asphalt.

But first I had to pay the bill.

Uh oh.

Dallas — we have a problem.  When I reached for the check that’s when I suddenly realized this night was about to become so far beyond a humiliation that I think I just lost it right then and there and began to burst out laughing.

A few hours earlier while trying to find a jump start for the car, I’d switched jackets.  That meant I’d left my billfold in the other coat pocket.  The billfold had all my money and credit cards.  So, I was sitting at a dinner table on a Saturday night penniless.  Flat fucking broke.

I think I was laughing by this time.  Crying, maybe.  I don’t remember.  The girl must have thought I was insane.  If there was a bridge nearby, I probably would have jumped off it.

“Umm, you’re not going to believe this, but umm…..”

Whatever syllables followed next from my trembling salty lips aren’t important, nor are they remembered exactly word for word, some three decades later.  However, I do remember this.  My date actually gasped for air.  Then, she just stared.  Sort of like a death stare.  Then, she calmly reached into her purse, tossed some money on the tabletop, and confessed she needed to go to the ladies room immediately.  Yeah, I totally got that.  I could surely understand.  I’m stoked with empathy.  The girl needed to catch her breath.  Take a little break.  I’m sure our date had been quite overwhelming.

Well, I sat there by myself with my hands over my face in silence for the next ten minutes.  The agony seemed a lot longer than that.  It sure seemed like a long time for her to be using the restroom.  So, I left her money on the table and approached to the hostess stand.  I was still clueless.

“Hey, did you see a brunette lady in a polka-dot dress up here?  She’s my date.  I can’t find her.”

 “Yeah, she jumped in a taxi and left five minutes ago.”

Can you believe that?  I didn’t even get a kiss.

Well, at least I got a free dinner out of the worst date of my life.

 

Note:  ‘Tis the season of love.  Now it’s your turn.  Please join our fun at Facebook where readers can post their WORST DATE EVER stories in the “comments” section.  My last poll question got about 230 replies.  This one should be a blast.  CLICK THE LINK BELOW:

 

 

 

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Posted by on Feb 11, 2019 in Blog, Essays, Rants and Raves | 2 comments

Morsels of My Madness IV

 

 

Random thoughts that came to me while eating sour lemonade and drinking a ham sandwich…..

 

[1]  If asked to describe my social media account in just five words or less, I’ll go with this:     OLD MAN YELLS AT CLOUD.

[2]  Actor “Rob Lowe” was trending last week.

My first thought was:  Did he die?
My second thought was:  Sexual harassment?
My third thought was:  Another old blackface photo?

This is the world we now live in.

[3]  I don’t want to sound sacrilegious, but The Bible is boring.  It’s a terrible book.  Hint:  If they want more readers, hire Stephen King to do a massive re-write.  If there’s a movie, toss in a few car chases.

[4]  I’m waiting for Five-Thirty-Eight to do a detailed study on the inverse relationship between aging and the number of current hit songs someone can name.

[5]  Someone posted an early draft of the Green New Deal, which contains some crazy-sounding stuff.  Okay, whatever.  Let me remind everyone that Sir Paul McCartney’s first draft of a weird song that started out as “Scrambled Eggs” eventually became a rock masterpiece titled, “Yesterday.”

[6]  Has anyone checked to see if Matthew McConaughey actually drives a Lincoln Navigator?  I really want to know.

[7]  Too bad Rep. John Dingell died last week at the ripe young age of 92.  He was almost old enough to run for president.

[8]  I’m done playing in poker tournaments because I’m fed up with all the table changes.  I always get moved off my starting table straight into the parking lot.

[9]  Has anyone ever approached the seating host at a restaurant and said, “I’m starving — oh, and I’m here with the Donner Party?”

[10]  If children got screwed by clowns as often as they get doodled by priests and preachers it would be against the law to take your kids to the circus.

[11]  Not sure who I’d rather see doing hard time busting rocks in a prison yard — Donald Trump or Sheldon Adelson.  Here’s an idea:  Handcuff the two shitbags together.  That would make one helluva’ reality television show, wouldn’t it?  Gives The Defiant Ones a whole new meaning.

[12]  I’m curious about something.  In 1969, we landed a rocket on the moon using computers the size of a gymnasium.  Now, fifty years later, how come I can’t get a fucking internet connection in Downtown Summerlin?

[13]  Why are so many old extremist Right-wing White men scared of a relatively powerless 29-year-old freshman socialist congresswoman of color?

[14]  When you wash your car at one of those do-it-yourself places, isn’t handling the scrubber kinda’ like using someone else’s toothbrush?

[15]  The timeline of every rock band:

  1.  Struggle
  2.  First Hit
  3.  Pop Stardom
  4.  Drugs and alcohol
  5.  Fights
  6.  Breakup
  7.  Recovery
  8.  Boredom
  9.  Bankruptcy
  10.  Reunion tour

[16]  I’m genuinely curious.  How can people with no original thoughts and utterly nothing interesting to say somehow get 450,o00 twitter followers?

[17]  Am I the only person alive still using Windows 98?  Shouldn’t I get a lifetime achievement award or something?

[18]  Though it does take creativity, I figured out how to live totally rent-free.  My new home address is an IKEA store.

[19]  The word “FUCK” is the most creative word in the English language.  Think of how many derivatives there are and different ways it can be used.  Even the way “FUCK” is said aloud can mean completely different things. “FUCK!” said one way can mean, “this is terrible!” yet can also mean “this is wonderful!” based solely upon the inflection of one’s voice.  Whoever invented the word is a fucking genius.

[20]  You haven’t really stood up for much in life unless you have at least a few haters.  It’s good to have haters.  Hate from those who are ignorant is a currency as valuable as gold.

 

Want more?  Previous “Morsels of My Madness” here:

NOW A TRILOGY:  MORSELS OF MY MADNESS

EVEN MORE MORSELS OF MY MADNESS

MORE MORSELS OF MY MADNESS

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Posted by on Feb 9, 2019 in Blog, Essays | 2 comments

Are You Ready for Some….

 

 

Don’t look now, but a new professional football league debuts tonight.  Well, I have a few comments.

 

Are you ready for some….

….I can’t bear to type this next word, but here it goes….

….football ???

A new professional football league debuts tonight.  The premature infant of a fling that should have been aborted the instant some rich dude in the back of a limo presumably blurted out, “hey, let’s start a new football league!” will be officially known as the “Alliance of American Football.”  Blare the tinfoil trumpets.  Call in Larry Greenfield to sing our national anthem.

I shit you not, my friends.  Just in case you missed the Super Bowl-shattering “I wish it were #fakenews” non-story, don’t fret — you’re not alone.  No one else has heard of the “AAF” either.

Curious and desperately in need of a new column on what’s typically the slowest traffic day for bloggers, I typed the three letters “AAF” into a Google search engine and — voila!

This is what popped up:

 

Okay, let’s just say the AAF is a “work in progress.”  Translated, that means no one knows what they’re doing nor has a clue what’s going on.  This league is going to make the Trump White House look like Daimler-Benz.

As of this morning, the Arizona Hotshots are still looking for a head coach.  Interested in the job?  Word is, if you can be at the Home Depot parking lot in North Glendale ready for work at 6 pm, you’ve got the position.  Oh, and the game starts at 7.  Bring your own headset and bottles of Gatorade.  English as a first language not required.

No health insurance.  No benefits.  No vacation time (unless the league folds).  Perfect job for the “self-starter.”  The league’s fitness program consists of running to the bank every payday to make sure the check doesn’t bounce.

Let’s be honest.  Launching a new football league might be the worst idea of all time — this not counting William Shatner performing this eye-popping, unintentionally hilarious 1978 cover of the Elton John-Bernie Taupin classic, “Rocket Man.”

 

So, you think I’m bullshitting.  You think I made the name “Arizona Hotshots” up, didn’t you?

No, that’s really the team name.  The Hotshots.  How’d you like that on your resume?  I will say one thing.  Site unseen, without knowing any of the players, I make the Hotshots a “pick” against the Arizona Cardinals, provided that Josh Rosen takes all snaps for the red birds.

Natural curious, t took me three clicks and half a glass of Zinfandel to finally find out which second-tier American cities will actually have an AAF team this debut season.  It appears the death list of decapitated dreamers includes Birmingham, San Antonio, Orlando, Salt Lake City, Memphis, Atlanta, and….and….and…..

….I can’t bear to type this next word, but here it goes….

San Diego.

Seriously….San Diego.

San Diego couldn’t keep the fucking Chargers in town!  Do you seriously think anyone’s going to buy a ticket to go see the San Diego Fleet?

While doing a web search, I was particularly amused by this ground shaking announcement that nobody else apparently saw, except me and maybe the guy who wrote it.  According to the press release, Aaron Murray and Christain Hackenberg HIGHLIGHTED the QB’s taken in this year’s draft.  Highlighted!  Presumably, Ryan Leaf and Joe Kapp weren’t available.

To be clear, an alternative pro football league to the established NFL did succeed in the past.  Once.  Too bad, that was 59 years ago.  The AFL was formed because the older league and TV networks were slow to react to a national hunger for more football.  Back then there were a dozen NFL teams and three television networks.  Now, there are 3,000 TV networks, and half of them right now are showing the creepy guy selling the colon cleanse product.  More football?  Does anyone other than Tom Brady want to see another football game for the next six months?

Fuck no!

So, while the AFL succeeded before I was born, at least three football leagues have self-imploded since then.  The alphabet soup of dead football leagues looks like a losing Scrabble tray in a dementia ward.  WFL.USFL.XFL.  It’s to the point where the only way to possibly compete is to make up a word.  Gee, is “WLUX” a word, Alex?

Dumb shits.  This ship to nowhere is going to blow through millions.  It’s about as promising as backing Newt Gingrich in a presidential campaign.  By the way, Newt — just in case you’re reading….6 pm at Home Depot, partner.  I know it’s been a while since you last worked and anyone took you seriously.

I have zero interest in watching this bullshit football league.

Oh, wait.

You can bet it?  You can wager on the games?

Seriously?  There are real lines in Las Vegas on the AAF?

Really???

 

Ahh, fuck it.  Give me the San Diego Fleet +3 tonight versus San Antonio.

 

Note:  Follow the Facebook discussion on this topic here:

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Posted by on Feb 8, 2019 in Blog, Essays, Rants and Raves | 3 comments

Now a Trilogy: Morsels of My Madness

 

 

Can’t stop the madness:  Crazed lunacy or revelation?  You decide.

 

[1]   I don’t want to come across as being too judgmental, but some people disgust me just by what they order to eat.

[2]   Why is it when I deal with Scandinavian people, they speak and write English — which is their 2nd, 3rd, or 4th language — far better than most Americans?

[3]  Three Important Facts of Life:  1.  Barbecue is meant to be served in giant portions.  2.  Rock n’ roll is meant to be played really loud.  3.  Anyone who serves wine at room temperature shouldn’t be allowed to serve wine.

[4]   True Story of What Happened Last Sunday at a Casino Super Bowl Party in Las Vegas:  A customer became so outraged at being charged $8 for a hot dog that he slapped the vendor.  That’s just wrong.  Next time, use the entire fist.

[5]   Eugene Levy is the John Cazale of comedy.  Everything he appears in is good just because he’s in it.

[6]   I’m proud of myself.  This week, I stepped onto the treadmill four times.  Now, if I could just figure out where the button is to turn the damn thing on.

[7]   If a homeless man somehow gets elected to the House, does that mean he’s not homeless anymore?

[8]   If binge drinking causes short-term memory loss, what does binge drinking do?

[9]   Bible people believe that all women on earth originated from a man’s single rib.  Does that mean there’d now be 12 women for every man if he’d forked over a full slab?

[10]   How do you stop eating salsa and chips at the Tex-Mex place whatever comes first — they run out or you die?

[11]   Meditation is 50 percent telling your brain to shut up; 30 percent trying to recall which day was your dentist appointment; 15 percent trying to remember who co-starred with Michael Keaton in Night Shift; and 5 percent actually meditating.

[12]  If I blurt out what kinky sex acts I want to do with Alexa, will she think I’m a pervert?

[13]  When he dies, if Sheldon Adelson decides to get cryogenically frozen, will anyone notice he’s deceased?

[14]  Just once, I’d like to pick the right checkout line at the grocery store.

[15]  I can’t watch Family Feud anymore.  Last time I turned it on, the answers were so bad I wanted to punch out both families.

[16]  My goal this year is to get completely out of debt.  Now, if someone can just lend me $230,oo0 I’ll be all set.

[17]  Who the fuck wears white tennis shoes?  Seriously.

[18]  Quit bitching, fellow liberals.  We should all be thrilled the dufus in the White House is working only 3 hours a day.  Imagine the damage he’d do if he was both incompetent and hard-working.

[19]  So far, one of the great accomplishments of my life is not being able to name one song or lyric by Kanye West.

[20]  I find comparisons between Trump and Hitler to hysterically inaccurate.  Take just a couple of differences.  Hitler was reasonably smart, loyal to his country, loved animals, and faithful to his wife.

 

Note:  Previous “Morsels of My Madness” here:

EVEN MORE MORSELS OF MY MADNESS

MORE MORSELS OF MY MADNESS

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Posted by on Feb 5, 2019 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 0 comments

Drawing Racial Dividing Lines on Political Correctness

 

 

Two race-based controversies exploded over this past weekend.

Ralph Northam, well on his way to being the ex-Governor of Virginia, is getting skewered for some racially-charged acts which (allegedly) took place 35 years ago.  He’s also badly bungled the fallout in two baffling press conferences which were intended to restore confidence but did quite the opposite.  In an astonishing contradiction, speaking in his own defense Gov. Northam did far more harm than good when he backtracked from his previous statement.  Now, the Democrat is under severe pressure from several lawmakers, including members of his own party, to resign and basically disappear from the political scene altogether.

Meanwhile, across the country, comedian Bill Maher, star of HBO’s popular weekly comedy-talk show Real Time, is in serious trouble (again) for making an off-hand joke about a chicken franchise during a live sit-down interview with a Black congressman from Texas.  Maher was on camera talking to Rep. Will Hurd when he tried to lighten up what had been a serious interview by making reference to Popeye’s Fried Chicken.

Though unrelated, the two recent controversies have plunged the nation into another heated racial divide.  These scandals resurrect important questions about political correctness — and specifically who it applies to and when it’s applicable.  Given the racial insensitivity commonly associated with the political right, these incidents were unusual since Gov. Northam and Maher are on the left of the spectrum.  That assessment is indeed accurate.  Gov. Northam is the top Democratic officeholder in a purple state.  Maher, while overtly libertarian on many issues, has drifted decidedly towards the left in recent years, especially since Donald Trump’s election.

Should the same standards of behavior and a similar level of criticism apply equally to both men?  Aside from being racially charged, are these two cases similar?  Should punishments apply to both?

Here are my thoughts:

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