NaNoWriMo Will Be My Punishment

I’ve been sucking it up in the writing department.

I wish that I could say I had done any of the following:

– Wrote a 200,000 word novel after consuming too many energy drinks
– Traveled to Europe
– Ate 5 wheelbarrows full of jelly donuts
– Started a band
– Cast as Optimus Prime in the next Transformers movie

Unfortunately, the list looks more like this:

– Played Bejeweled
– Traveled for work
– Watched NFL games for entire days
– Stressed about my NFL Fantasy Team for entire weeks
– Ate 5 wheelbarrows full of jelly donuts

I’ve written myself multiple times in bouts of motivation to overcome procrastination in my life….

“There is plenty of time each day to get EVERYTHING done, as long as you do not procrastinate and remain diligent”

“HAVE SOMETHING TO SHOW FOR YOUR TIME”

“DON’T WASTE TIME ON THINGS THAT YOU WILL HAVE NOTHING TO SHOW FOR UNTIL AFTER  YOU HAVE DONE EVERYTHING THAT WILL SHOW UP”

“YOU SUCK”

_________

Oh, there’s been times of ultra-productivity. But they are too few and too far between; short lived rebellions on King Procrastination’s throne.

What makes me most mad is that I know when I put my mind to something, I end up rocking it, whether work, home or school related.

My mind just happens to be like an incredibly fat child being asked to perform wind sprints, whose trainer is easily distracted and bribed with compromises and promises.

“I promise I’ll write, just after I check my email. And other blogs. And my fantasy team. And….”

“It’s okay that I didn’t write today because I went to the gym. Yeah… that makes sense”

“Hmm.. that sucks. I actually sat down to write but I didn’t have a bowl of candy and a drink and the perfect music and a comfy chair and a back massage and complete, utter stillness and silence around me.”

Well, no longer.

I’m firing the trainer and sending my lazy ass mind to bootcamp, and it goes by the name of NaNoWriMo.

The reason I am putting this out there is at this point I have a few followers, and suprisingly enough they aren’t all my mom. The book, called “No Plot? No Problem!”,  mentions that a perfect way to motivate yourself in this adventure is to be held accountable by multiple peoples. Well, nothing better than  fellow writers to encourage/ridicule me.

So my task to you, if you have been lured into following my blog, is to hold me to the NaNoWriMo fire for the month of November.

For that month, my blog will function more like a journal and DAILY, I am going to provide updates as to my progress. Some days—fine— most days it will be brief. But I will at the very least give the word count and on-track-ness.

If you are also undertaking the challenge of NaNoWriMo, let me know in the comments and I will do my best to cheer you on (I already know about you Aiden). Also, feel free to recommend punishments for failing to complete the task. Nothing more motivating than fear and embarrassment.

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Can You Make It Through This Post Without Wanting To Be In 5th Grade Again?

Tell me if this was as awesome to you as it was for me. It pinned down my entire elementary school life. And I thought I was special and unique with my Animorphs and Surge.

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A Tip? For What?!

For my foreign friends in enlightened countries where tipping or gratuity is not required, here is a biased definition.

Let’s say you are a waiter. Your job description is to take my order, retrieve said order, and tell me how much it was. You are paid to do this by the restaurant. However, I must also pay you extra for not killing me or ravaging my wife while you did your job. That extra is called a tip.

Different people asking for tips, asking wife for tip, then dying

I know that many work in fields were tipping is customary, if not expected, so let me make one thing clear.

I am an incredible tipper. If you bring me my food and give me my drink, you’re getting 15% after tax. If you smile and don’t put a knife in front of my 1-year-old daughter, you’ll get 20%. As I said, incredible.

Only once have I not provided a tip of at least 10%. I had a close-to-maxed-out credit card, my wife had some change. Between the two of us and a trip to my car for some coin scrounging, we managed to pay the bill. They repeatedly charged my credit card for decreasing amounts until it finally was approved. I considered leaving the unneeded pennies and nickels but felt like that could be worse. After an embarrassing explanation and heartfelt apology to our server, we left with tails between legs.

This preface should serve to tell you two things. One, that I am a hypocrite but most importantly, that I am a good person, so don’t hate me.

However…

Let’s explore a scenario that occurred recently.

Cashier: Hello sir.
I hand her the car wash receipt
Cashier: Okay.. so one Deluxe wash. That will be… $24.45. Would you like to tip the guys working on your car?
Me: *blank stare*
Cashier: Sir?
Me: I’m sorry. Did you ask if I wanted to tip the car wash workers?
Cashier: Yes. We can add that onto your bill here.
Me: Did they do a good job?
Cashier: Um…. I don’t think they’ve started yet.
Me: Then why would I tip them?
Cashier: *blank stare*
Me: What if they dookie in my cup holder? What if they fill up my car with water? Do you think those things deserve a tip?
Cashier: No… but I don’t think–
Me: Me neither. But it makes a lot of sense to wait until services are rendered before I start slapping butts and saying “Good game!”
Cashier: Sir?
Me: In fact, wouldn’t tipping beforehand eliminate all incentive to actually do a good job? Regardless of whether they smear excrement on my windows or spend 5 extra minutes scrubbing wheels, I’ve rewarded them the same.
Cashier: *slowly backs away from the counter*
Me: Are you not already paying them? If I come in for a car wash, aren’t the expectations that my car gets washed? Isn’t that why they are here?! Why would I pay extra for them to do their job?!
A moment of silence
Me: No, I don’t think I’ll be adding a tip to my bill. Thank you.

The what-really-happened-train derailed somewhere above but I think I’ve made my point: I have no qualms over scoffing at the tip jar and your face if you’ve provided me nothing more than your job description. Don’t expect gratuity, earn it.

*steps off soap box*

I know some people are paid substantially less than minimum wage because tips are supposed to make up the remainder. This is exactly the problem. I urge you to quit, strike and dookie in cup holders.
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Go Shawty, It’s Your Birthday

Today’s my birthday. Twenty-six. It sounds incredibly old. I know it’s not but it sounds old and I definitely don’t feel that old.

I have a few guesses as to why. First, I have a baby face. If it wasn’t for my greying hair, I could probably still get kid-priced hair cuts.

Second, the top half of my body is stuck 50% through puberty.

Normal cycle of male puberty

I have no hair on my arms. No hair on my chest. I do have one hair on my back, but that lonely soul is put out of its misery when it gets long enough. My arm pits are the only exception, like pitiful oases in a desert of skin….

I’m not sure where I am going with this so let’s move on.

All you really need to know is that my quarter century of life has been lovely and that I am still waiting for my growth spurt.

Peter Monaco in Kindergarten with Steps and a rat tail

Hello ladies…

  • Kindergarten – Sported a rat-tail and steps at the forfeiture of friends.
  • 2nd Grade – Teacher asked my class to name famous women. I didn’t know why this woman was famous but I knew she was, so I offered it up… Lorena Bobbitt.
  • 7th Grade – Girls. Also, girls.
  • 9th Grade – Traveled to Europe for over three weeks: England, France, Switzerland, Italy, Vatican City, Austria, Germany. Knowledge gleaned: France stinks, Austria and Switzerland are gorgeous, no one likes Americans except for Americans, I love gelato.
  • 12th Grade – Girl. Specifically, Pre-Wife-Girl. She was the cheerleader, I was the triangle player in the percussion band.
  • College Freshman – I think I’ll be a Mechanical Engineer. 30% on Chemistry test. Okay, maybe not. How about English? “There will be weekly 5 page essays”. Math it is.
  • College Senior – Proposed to and married Pre-Wife-Girl. Missed huge midterm to go on Honeymoon. Worth it. Given ultimatum from professor: get 100% on final or you don’t graduate. Oh yeah, Dr. Moohamdohoshnevisan?
  • Graduated – Assumed people would throw money at me and my fancy college degree. Spent 6 months in that delusion.
  • Last Year – Post-Pre-Wife-Girl gives birth to our beautiful baby girl. Daddy diagnosed with permanent tunnel vision for his two girls.
  • This Year – Love of writing reignites, manifesting itself into a bloggy.
  • Today – No work, an Ubermonster in one hand, jelly donut in the other and so much sushi for dinner that I pee mercury.

Life is good.

Posted in Blogging, Funnies, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Driving Already Sucks, Don’t Add Radio to Your Pain

From my previous post, you all know I possess otherworldly math skills. I’ve put those skills to work, looked up actuary tables, done some maths, and discovered a shocking truth.

If you listen to the radio while commuting, you will die.

It will start off harmless, an easy way to pass the time. Oh I like this song. I wonder who sings it…. Jazzy Jim doesn’t tell you. Eff you Jazzy Jim. You run through your presets. Commercial. Commercial. Country song. Dry heave. Commercial. Well I guess I’ll go back. Commercial. Holy hell. Okay, well maybe good stuff is on the way. 

5 minutes later, you are rewarded for your patience. With Katy Perry. You change the station. Katy Perry. Katy Perry.

A voice in your head whispers to you, “80 mph into a barricade isn’t a bad way to go” Your hands twitch. The voice screams “FOR THE LOVE, JERK THE WHEEL!”. Your hands obey. You die. The autopsy report reveals your brain exploded before impact.

death report after listening to Katy Perry on Radio

Here’s the thing. I like Katy Perry. As long as you are not searching for your soul in her music, you’ll end up okay. But I don’t like her 40 times in the same day. In the grocery store. At the gas station. In the gym…. Okay fine I don’t go to the gym but you get the idea.

Whether your commute is 40 miles or 4 minutes, there is no reason to listen to the radio. And if you rely on radio to discover new music, it may surprise you that there are more than ten bands. You are in my prayers.

Can you say something sucks without offering up alternatives? You can when it is like finding alternatives to flicking your eyeball but I’ll do it anyway.

Get audiobooks free from your library (Overdrive) or cheap at garage sales. CD’s from the library (Freegal) or friends. Internet radio on your phone. Your car is old and stupid? Headphones will bridge that gap. I’ll even turn everything off and just listen to my car’s strange noises that I will have to conquer. Talk radio is a last resort, use it sparingly.

Microsoft Zune HD

Microsoft’s failed attempt at not sucking. I actually love it. I’m sure the other two people who bought it do to.

No friends and no library? Spend $10 a month and get a music subscription. I know you have internet because you are reading this. I personally use Zune Music Pass because I am the only person who actually bought a Zune HD (now discontinued).

$10 a month is worth your life.

Because I care so much about you not dying, I am going to start you off right. I get unlimited music, so if a band shows a snippet of talent, I download their whole CD. Usually, I am badly mistaken and end up trashing it. But every now and then, I get lucky.

Before you scroll down, I have one rule, but it’s an important one. If you listen to a song, listen to the entire thing. 30 seconds can’t do justice to a song, just like 30 minutes can’t for a movie. You need to be there for the whole thing or someone will drop kick you for asking questions.

Below you will find some mostly obscure bands that deserve better.

  • The Reign of Kindo  – Let It Go  
  • Innerpartysystem – Don’t Stop 
  • Royworld – Man in the Machine
  • Paper Route – Last Time
  • Empires – Damn Things Over
  • The Duhks – Fast Paced World
  • Fink – Honesty
  • The Queen Killing Kings – Naked in the Rain
  • Yoav – Adore Adore

Okay I realized I can go forever, so here’s a different tactic.

In a comment, tell me a few songs from bands you love. In return, I will recommend a few bands you may not have heard of. Kind of like Pandora but smarter, more attractive and capable of wearing these.

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Fail at Math With Style

We’ve all seen the math tests where people answer “tough” questions with humor.

A while ago, I came across this one…

… and realized it was mine

math test fail expand

Are you supposed to claim things like this?

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Revenge of the Donuts: Dark Jelly

Fellow writer shadowoperator, operating a fantastic blog over here, suggested that I examine my devastation upon the donut population and put myself in a jelly donut’s skin.

The exercise in donut empathy stopped almost immediately after it began as it is extremely hard to concentrate while trying to suck jelly from your own arm.

So I decided to go about it in a less slobbery way. Google.

At first, all I could find for the search “do jelly donuts have feelings LOL” were calorie counts, a practice violating the first law of donut eating:

“Judge a donut not by the color of its frosting but by the content of its center.”
– Bismark de la Creme

I continued on through the misguided numbers, clicking on page after page of search results, desperate for answers.

I dare not say what page I ended up on, but what I found changed my life.  A mere telling will not do this conversation justice so I have copied and pasted its contents.

Conversation between two jelly donuts

__________________________________________________________

Jelly donut agent missing in action

__________________________________________________________

Demise of jelly donut, picture of half eaten donut

Posted in Food, Funnies | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments