Sunday, March 31, 2013

Etiquette in 7 Easy Steps

 How to properly behave in an Ivy League university library in New York City:

1. Wear something that screams, "I don't go to school here." Avoid wearing dark-rimmed glasses, makeup, scarves, deodorant, cardigans, and/or sweatpants. Do not carry a messenger bag or a metal water bottle. Once you enter the building, ask the old, sad man at the desk where the quietest spot in the building is. Tell him you're working on something "that I could tell you about, but it'd just be over your head."

2. Get lost. Go down a few flights of stairs/stares. Turn right, left, and then whatever direction you choose. If you find yourself amongst books, smusty mells, and sweaty college students - you're on your way.

3. Sit down. Do whatever you were going to do at said library. Open a book, go on Facebook, watch When Harry Met Sally, whatever. Stay for at least 30 minutes.

4. Get up to use the bathroom and ask some dumb looking kid with a Nike running t-shirt to watch your stuff. Ask him if he's a runner. Then say, "Yeah right" in response to his answer.

5. Oppa bathroom time.

6. Return to your stuff. Thank Mr. Marathon for his generosity of time and spirit and carry on with your activity.

7. Notice the gargoyle staring at you from above, mocking you.

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Monday, July 18, 2011

3 More Deadly Poems, Part III

A man named Hank, an artist and a poet, was walking near the lake,

He turned around and saw something move, the bushes began to shake.
Then a pack of wolves surrounded him, the world became dark as night,
Poor Hank was then sadly eaten and he could no longer write.

A woman named Gail was gardening. Petunias, gardenias, and rose,
A wolf came out of nowhere and she went quickly for the hose.
The water was no match for the beast, as Gail was eaten alive,
She should have planted herbs, for wolves are allergic to chive.

Little Kevin was playing basketball, alone in his driveway,
He couldn't make a basket, though he practiced everyday.
A wolf came along and offered some help, "Here give me a try,"
He made the shot then ate the boy, that's how Kevin came to die.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

But I Digress

It's not easy being the new kid. I was always the new kid. My family moved around a lot, not because of the military or job transfers, but because of ADHD.

I went from being the only black student in my 5th grade class in Boston to being the only white student in my new middle school in Philly. But I digress.

I joined a new therapy group last Tuesday night. I sat in the parking lot, nervous as hell. I smoked a Virginia Slim. Inhale, exhale. Relax, Gabe. They aren't going to tease you. This is a therapy group. They're just as damaged as you are. I mustered enough confidence to walk in. I walked in.

The high school basketball court was sectioned into two halves. The therapy half held a small circle of 10 chairs and a card table holding Chips Ahoy and coffee. The other half held basketball practice. Sectionals were tomorrow night. Go Eagles! But I digress.

I was the new kid again. Everyone looked at me and smiled those fake smiles you get when you walk into an art gallery wearing shorts. "Did anyone watch the Home Run Derby last night?" No response. I tried again. "I've been in therapy for 15 years!" Again, no response. What the hell is going on? I gave it one more shot. "The king of hearts is the only king in the deck without a mustache! Did you guys know that?" Some older gentleman rolled his eyes.

"Can we please get started, new guy? You're already 20 minutes late," said Mark or Greg (I can't remember), the therapist. There it was. NEW GUY. That's all I am to these people. I have at least a little bit of dignity. I stood up for myself.

"New guy? Is that all I am to you? What's next? Wedgies and swirlies? Another 3rd place finish in the science fair? Are you guys going to TP my house? Steal my tator tots? Make fun of my banana bike? Ask my sister to prom? Well she's not interested! So back off! She has a boyfriend back in Boston that's way bigger than you and is a black belt." I lost consciousness.

The next thing I remember, I was sitting against the wall, watching oddly tall 16 year olds shoot free throws. The Eagles lost in overtime the next night. They had a chance to win it with 3 seconds left. The shot hit back iron and the rival Spartans were Sectional Champs. Sometimes things just don't your way.

But I digress.

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Friday, July 8, 2011

Four More Deadly Poems, (Famous People Edition)

There once was a lady, Gaga her name,
Like Cyndi Lauper, almost the same,
One day she was on stage and was eaten by wolves,
Not the fault of a person, as the 80s were to blame.

There once was a woman named Kesha,
Her hair was blond, her shirts mesh-a,
One day she became irrelevant, and was eaten by wolves,
And people cared even less-a.

There once was a man named Jay-Z,
I'm king of hip-hop, he did decree,
He had 99 problems, and was eaten by wolves,
Now Beyonce's a single lady, alone and free.

There once was a Jackson named Michael,
He told his siblings to take a hike-ael,
Once day he was moonwalking and was eaten by wolves,
On Facebook, his page has many like-aels (because he's dead).

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Interesting Facts

Note: Some of the following may have happened.

I went to an audition last week. The audition was to get onto an improv team at a theater that had both the size and reputation of the kitchen in my college apartment, minus the stain behind the fridge (It was from spilled milk. No, I didn't cry. Yes I did.)

Improv auditions are strange. They're not unlike the Royal Wedding. A lot of build up and preparation only to be upstaged by someone better doing something better. The Queen married off William. Barack killed Bin Laden. You get it.

We first had to line up and say our names and something interesting about ourselves. I have two go-to facts that I bust out for auditions. 1) "I wore these pants yesterday," and 2) "I actually root for Lebron James." It wasn't until today that I realized these facts are neither interesting nor effective. Let's take a closer look...

1) I wore these pants yesterday. This is uninteresting because as I've come to learn, most people who perform improv only own one pair of pants. It turns out EVERYONE in the room wore their pants yesterday.

2) I actually root for Lebron James. This is uninteresting because as I've come to learn, most people who perform improv have never heard of Lebron James. When I say, "I actually root for Lebron James," most of the auditors look at each other and whisper, "Who the fuck is that? Who names their kid Lebron? And two first names? Yeech."

- Hi, my name is Gabe. To get me started can I get a suggestion of anything at all?
- A more interesting fact.
- Thank you.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Apple Store

I went to the Apple store to fix my MacBook. It was a brand new store, in the heart of trendy Chicago. The people who worked there were cooler than me. Way cooler than me. I walked in and alongside the breezy air conditioning, an air of hipness smacked me in the face. WHACK. Now I'm not not a hip guy, I have thick, black rimmed glasses. I own a pair of Converse All-Stars. I've heard of the Black Keys. But I was out of place. I was Flavor Flav at the Royal Wedding. What's HE doing here?

I made an appointment online to meet with a Genius, which is fancy for computer technician, which is fancy for someone who owns or has access to a screwdriver. I walked over to the Genius Bar (don't ask for a Tequila Sunrise, they don't serve alcohol), and checked in. He was holding an iPad 2 and in a very friendly tone asked me my name. "Gabe," I said. "Wow, cool name!" said the Genius. "Are you Mexican?" "No," I said. "Cool!" said the Genius. "That's awesome!" I couldn't tell if he was on a heavy dose of cocaine or incredibly racist. Probably both.

I was told to sit and wait for the next available Genius station to open up. I sat. At the other end of the store, I heard piano music. I looked behind me and there was a guy sitting on a beanbag pushing non-existent buttons on an iPad, creating the music. A fake piano. I felt like I was a special guest at Hansel's bachelor party. Zoolander would be bursting through the door at any moment, I was sure of it.

I was called up to the Genius Bar. After telling a few hilarious jokes about ordering beers and passing law exams, we got to the point. My battery was shot. "Your battery is shot," said the Genius. "CRAP!" I said. "BUT I DON'T EVEN OWN A GUN!" The Genius looked at me with his genius eyes and said, "You need a new battery. It's not a big deal." "Oh, alright. Thank you kindly," I said.

I received my new battery and took a stroll around the store, checking out all the gizmos and gadgets and whatzits and whynots. This was not a place for normal people. The walls were talking, the floors were made of videos, and the ceiling was heaven itself. I was out of place. I couldn't find the exit. I approached a Genius, carefully. "How do I get out of here?" I asked. He replied, "There's no escaping. You may as well stay a while. Have you seen the new iPhones?" I started to sweat. My chest was pounding. The world started to close in around me. I was having a panic attack. I'm stuck here forever? Oh no! I didn't bring my Ray Bans. All I have is my Sony discman. They're all going to make fun of me. "WHAT DO YOU MEAN THERE'S NO ESCAPING?" I asked. "WHAT THE HELL AM I SUPPOSED TO DO? I HAVE TO GET HOME. I HAVE TO GO!" He looked at me with his genius eyes and replied, "Dude, the door is right there. I was kidding. It was a joke." "Thank you kindly," I said. And walked out.

Moral of the story? Don't trust anyone with an IQ over your own.

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

3 More Deadly Poems

1) There once was a guy named Chuck,

He was always running out of luck,
One day he went hiking and was eaten by wolves,
And boy, did that really suck.

2) There once was a girl named Kate,
She was always running late,
One day she got lost and was eaten by wolves,
And was on time at the Pearly Gate.

3) There once was a fellow named Mike,
He was always riding his bike,
One day he fell down, but wasn't eaten by wolves,
And then he...SIKE! (He was eaten by wolves).

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