Driver’s Ed

Okay, so, when navigating a parking lot, for how long must one be actually in a moving car, before the onus of accountability falls on those who suddenly zip into the previously clear aisle? Or, for that matter, how long does one’s car need to be in motion before it becomes acceptable to squash the pedestrian who clearly sees you from across the way, but in what can only be described as a desire to play chicken sullenly reinforce their right of way as a pedestrian, decides to significantly speed up their gait so as to walk in front of your car?

Just asking for a friend.

You Want Picante?? I’ll Give You Picante!!

I saw this on the newswire the other day, and be forewarned, it’s old…it was just something that popped up as a stupid meme and after researching, I found that it was indeed true: “Woman stabs boyfriend over salsa, say Akron police.” What?  She didn’t like Latin music? After reading several different articles on this incident, I found out that the story was even more ridiculous – more ridiculous than hating a sassy, sexy dance, you say? Why yes, that is exactly what I’m saying. This woman exploded into a murderous rage when she discovered that her boyfriend had eaten all the salsa they had on hand. Salsa. As in the condiment. The nerve of him!

Apparently blinded with anger at the thought of having no salsa picante to put on her cheeseburger, she grabbed a pen and started stabbing the boyfriend.  Not happy with the results from the writing instrument, she proceeded to knock the guy’s t.v. over (I have absolutely no idea what his t.v. had to do with anything) and after retrieving a knife from the kitchen, tried to finish the job the pen had started. After the “salsa savagery” was done, she fled, but was pulled over by police after a somewhat brief car chase. The boyfriend was expected to live and presumably has no dietary restrictions going forward.

My first thought was, “What the hell is wrong with people?”  That was my second and third thought too.  Maybe she would have had an excuse if he’d eaten all of their foraged truffle-essence quiche or their Coquilles St. Jacques. But salsa? Really? I mean, I guess I could understand if it was some kick-ass homemade salsa. You know, the kind you can’t find in your neighborhood grocery store or say, the 7-11 on the corner. Understanding is one thing, but I just want to make it clear, I still don’t condone food-related violence. Even if someone who shall remain nameless did steal the last bit of my Haas-Gooey Cake.

Anyhow, the woman in question told the police that the reason she stabbed him was because she “wanted to leave.” However, I’m thinking there has to be more. Right? I mean, there just has to be. A person doesn’t just snap over salsa. Do they? Maybe she had been salsa-deprived as a child. Maybe his finishing off the salsa was just the straw that broke the camel’s back in their relationship. But still, good grief! Leaving with her toothbrush after throwing his in the toilet would have been much better, and she wouldn’t be facing felonious assault charges.

Sadly, there are plenty of examples of stupidity out there in the world. A Utah man was convinced that his girlfriend was causing his headaches, so he shot her. She lived.  He’s still getting headaches in prison. Go figure. No-one ever said the guy was bright. Two ex-cons in Florida brought home a woman from a bar for an evening of “fun.” During the troika tryst, one of the cons shouted “Switch!” The other con didn’t want to, so he stabbed his buddy. You really need to be careful about picking and choosing your ménage à trois partners before doing the deed. Maybe set out some rules or sign a contract or something. You know, just to keep the stabbing down to a minimum.

But going back to the salsa lady…I don’t know if the boyfriend knew that running out of salsa was his girlfriend’s flash point, but seriously, should he have?? I mean, you’d think the guy would know just how strongly she felt about her condiments. Still, it seems like an awful lot of responsibility for one person to bear – eat this salsa and be stabbed or not eat the salsa and be deprived of some kick-ass salsa? What do I do, what do I do!?

I think, just to be on the safe side, I’m gonna start asking for extra packets of salsa when I go to Taco Bell to keep in my kitchen junk drawer… just in case something like this should ever befall me. I can use them to fend off any salsa-crazed zombies that infiltrate my house by throwing them as I back out of the kitchen to safety: “there! there! there is your salsa, you salsa-crazed zombie!” And all will be right with the world once more.


A Brief History of Online Dating

I know I’ve been talking a lot about dating lately, but as I have ventured back into the scene over the past year, I find myself doing what I do with a lot of new subjects of interest – overanalyzing. Hey, what can I say? It’s what I do best.

So, anywho, speaking of dating, let’s take a look at a phenomenon that generates over $2.5 billion in revenue per year: online dating sites. Online dating sites are used by 15% of Americans (don’t ask me to prove those figures, but I swear, I found them somewhere, I didn’t just make them up).  Our society’s demands on our time make the opportunity of finding a dating partner or, heaven forbid, a mate, problematic. Dating sites have become the cattle calls of personal interaction. This is not, however, something that sprang from the loins of the Internet.  The concept has been around for a long time. In fact, for thousands of years. Here are some of the more notable sites from my vivid and bored imagination history, yeah of course, history.

Hemo-tab-ra’s Sphinx Sylphs – Giza, Plateau of Giza, Kingdom of Egypt – 2497 BC

Hemo-tab-ra, an enterprising naturalized Hittite, gained a lucrative contract from Pharaoh Khafre to provide the workers who had just finished The Sphinx, and were now hard at work on the pyramids, with women. For a jar of beer, a worker could attach a short note to the base of The Sphinx that described himself. Local women could peruse the ads for 30 minutes in exchange for a small basket of wheat.  They would take their chosen ad to Hemo-tab-ra, who would set up the meeting at sunset. Egyptologists have even found and translated one of the ads:

“Jaru-al-tep, I am NOT near death.  I have all my arms and legs

and most of my teeth.

 I have eighteen toes and eight and-a-half fingers.

Only three open sores.

I love small animals and crying.

Looking for a woman.  That’s it.  Just a woman. PLEASE!

Balderic’s Beauties – Château d’Ainay-le-Vieil, Cher, France – 1301

Balderic le Lubrique saw an incredible marketing opportunity when the local women complained about the lack of men due to the fact that they were still on their way back from the Third Crusade. For the sensible price of 6 Denier (the same amount you’d spend on a fat capon), village ladies could put up notices on the wall of the Château. For an extra 2 Denier, Balderic would attach a drawing of the lady. In reality, they looked more like French cave dwelling pictures of Mastodons being speared, but hey, whatever works…and this apparently worked. This ad was found in cellar of the Château during renovations.

Angélique la Salope: I am 22.

My parents are worried that I will never marry and remain an

old maid forever, thus draining their finances and patience.

Cuddling in front of the fireplace to read a book would be wonderful

except for the fact that I can’t read or write

since women cannot go to school in our village.

My parents want grandchildren…

As for me, I just want a man who will not relieve himself on the kitchen floor.

“Do You Want Your Ashes Hauled?” – Advertisement in the New York Tribune – 1912

“Hauling Ashes” was a post-Victorian euphemism for “doing the nasty.” This was the first co-ed dating site. Someone would place an ad and ask for a response to a Box at the newspaper…”serious inquiries only.” The New York Public Library Archives reportedly has this ad on file in their vast records:

Proper Gramercy Park woman, widow

seeking discreet gentleman adorned with stately head of hair for social intercourse.

I have my own home that features window shades, and my own Victrola.

I prefer afternoon or early evening tea-time “meetings.”

Of note – a meal of any sort should not be presumed

Only those gainfully employed and with clean finger nails need apply.

Of course, the internet has changed the game. Some modern dating sites require the completion of exhaustive questionnaires. You’re simply too tired to date afterwards…or at least you need a nap first. Others feature the convenient “swipe left or right” feature to secure a furtive assignation. Not that I’m dismissing the whole “swipe left or right” thing outright, but let’s just say spur of the moment decisions in the love arena have never exactly boded well for me. Well, except for that one time…oh, nevermind, I digress.

One thing that has definitely changed over the years is the move away from simple facts and requests, and more towards flowery mendacity.  I mean, I know we all live for the moment when we enter the coffee shop to meet our online date, only to hear them chuckle and say, “Oh, I guess you can tell that my profile picture was taken about 20 years ago. When I was sober. And had hair. And showering was more of a thing.”

Hemo-tab-ra!  Where are you when we need you?


And Now For Something Completely Different


The Complete Guide to Identifying the
Tufted Walmart Customer (Qui Indutus Turpiter Palam)
in their Natural Habitat

Sadly, James Audubon, author of that classic catalog of American ornithology, The Birds of America, passed away before an entirely new species of rare bird, the Qui Indutus Turpiter Palam (Those Who Dress Shamefully in Public) mutated, evolved, and propagated throughout the United States.  Most ornithologists fix the date the species sprang up as July 2, 1962, near the town of Rogers, Arkansas.  Because this coincides exactly with the date and location of the first Walmart, it is generally held that the two occurrences are directly related but there is some heated debate over the theory.  Regardless, the Walmart name has been affixed to the species, and extensive DNA studies bear this out.

Because this highly varied species is now found throughout the United States (they reproduce prodigiously) this guide has been written to provide the amateur people-watcher a comprehensive reference for identifying them in the wild. Although there are numerous offshoots of the Tufted Walmart Customer (Qui Indutus Turpiter Palam), here are the major sub-species of this colorful creature.

Unum Amplitude Congruat Omnes – “One Size Fits All”
This sub-species is easily recognizable by its attempt to wear something that was intended to be worn by someone much (much, much) smaller. Vast expanses of flesh that should not ordinarily be seen ooze out of the garments’ borders. Most popular of the garments are yoga pants, halter tops, cycling shorts, and tube tops. Although it should be noted that severely ill-fitting bathing suits and Speedo type shorts have in fact been observed.

Et Ubi Sum Ego Non Curo – “I Don’t Care Where I Am”
Perhaps one of the most distinctive traits of this sub-species is their apparent “I don’t give a damn” attitude. It is worn with a kind of pride and one can only assume it is used to quickly locate and attract others of its kind.  Indeed, it is only due to local public indecency laws that they are wearing anything at all. Their outer plumage, what there is of it, is seemingly thrown on in a haphazard manner as they are leaving the nest. On numerous occasions, what is clearly sleepwear has been observed being worn in a brazen display of their oft-touted “I don’t give a damn” attitude. An identifying feature of this sub-species is the brightness of its plumage and the fact that all the colors they wear clash.

Indumentis Diaphanum – “Transparent Clothing”
This is, by far, the most controversial sub-species. In many cases, they defy logic, at least to the professional scientist, if not the casual observer. Their plumage is transparent. Gender of the subject is easily ascertained as there is also no under-plumage to hide gender features.  They are easily spotted as flocks of the species follow them wherever they go. This sub-species is generally regarded as a prime breeder of more of the Tufted Walmart Customer species.

Miles Simulare – “Pretend Soldier”
Also known as the Venator Incredibili or Quis Venator Persequitur, Non – “One Who Doesn’t Hunt But Likes Camo”
This sub-species has evolved to a point where they have developed “camo-plumage” which they think hides them.  It is often best to humor them; this can be done by bumping into them and then exclaiming “Oh! I’m sorry, I didn’t see you there!” Unfortunately, they are usually found near the cheap beer displays where they are easily recognized. At times, they can be observed diligently comparing the pros and cons of “on sale today only!” lawn chairs with and without built-in cup holders. They can show a belligerent attitude, but become quite docile and pleasant if you jingle a ring of keys in front of them.

Animalis Rabidus – “Animal Crazy”
This sub-species is unique in that they seem to prefer the company of animals over their own kind.  While they would ordinarily fall under a completely different Walmart species, they are included with Qui Indutus Turpiter Palam (Those Who Dress Shamefully in Public) or the Tufted Walmart Customer because of their unusual behavior. Observations have shown the individuals of this sub-species go so far as to hide their animal friends in large bags and purses, even using them as accessories to their otherwise prim and plain outer plumage. Particularly smart members of this sub-species obtain fake credentials for their companions, while others simply do not care what modern society thinks of them and therefore take their animal pals everywhere regardless of cleanliness, drool-control (or lack thereof), or behavior of said pal. Field notes from various locations indicate that all manner of animal sidekicks to this sub-species have been observed including the routine small, yapper dogs, along with pigs, snakes, and even a monkey. So-called super-centers with their caches of food, including open items such as fruit and vegetables, are not off limits to the Animalis Rapidus. It has been said this is the most brazen of all the Tufted Walmart Customers.

As the species continues to expand and grow across the United States, Walmart, the store generally credited with creating the species in the first place, finds that they need to build additional stores to provide more natural habitat. Observing the Tufted Walmart Customer in their own environment can be a fun activity for young and old alike. However, caution must be taken to limit interaction and under no circumstances should you feed them or attempt to take them home.  We suggest that you build a viewing blind in the parking lot of your nearest Walmart.