Mozart No Longa da Shiznit:
or Eurocentrism Gets its Ass Capped

ST. PAUL, MN - Move over Wolfgang, here comes Bootsy! Researchers at McNally Smith College have found that a steady diet of Parliament - Funkadelic has a direct correlation with the development of the same neurons purportedly developed by the music of Mozart. According to Dr. Funkenstein, "One blast of da bop gun will sho' -ly splank da funkless. Da flashlight has an interconnection with both funkentelechy and da same sh*t dat makes mutha f*ckas good at math."

Music stores can't keep enough copies in stock after the report was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Sales of "Uncle Jam Wants You," and "Cosmic Slop" have "torn the roofs" off of record stores as parents scramble to empower their newborns with the Law of Supergroovalisticprosifunkstication.

New mother Jennifer Whitney commented, "I played nothing but Mozart for my two other children. Sure, they can add, but the throbassonic realm is completely lost on them. They're completely robotic and they follow directions pretty well, but my newborn is completely different. He can not only add, but he's got a precocious development of self-satisfunktion, and he's popular as sh*t with the honey dips around da way."

For every gain, though, there are some risks. Doctors at the Methodist Hospital Family Birth Center have reported high instances of breech births, attributed to repeated listenings of Maggot Brain. Apparently some fetuses are taking the couplet "Free your mind and your ass will follow" quite literally. There are also scattered reports of jivation through logic, which experts fear drive mothers into perpetual do-loop or deep snooze.

Dr. Funkenstein, however, stands by his findings. "Thumpasorus Peoples knowes that pure uncut funk perpetuates wholeness and metafoolish perfunktion. Funk it, man. Rise above all spankic situations." Parents seem to have taken heed, decorating nurseries and cribs with a Mothership motif.

Mrs. Whitney also remains completely committed to her Motor Booty affair. "Funk the Wiggles, dog. I'm down wit' Mr. Wiggles the Worm," referring to the subaquatic, ultrasonic, sembionic Clone of Dr. Funkenstein. "I'm off the Eine Kleine Nachtmusik for good. A little night music? Please. My funkateers are in the prime zone of Funkativity."

Students of the Suzuki strings are even getting a primer on the downstroke, becoming a collective cathartic mass moving towards motor-vation. Suzuki instructor Ella McNalt comments "We're all strugglin' to attain the P-Funk and revitalize our juices. You feel me, dog?"

It seems a lot of people do.

Thanks to in part to www.georgeclinton.com for their useful "funkcyclopedia.


Help Woodsy Spread the Word...

Along with my caring parents, nothing raised me better than television. It shaped me into the well-rounded individual that I am today. Watching hours of Gilligan, Lucy or Fonzie did little more than keep my finger on the pulse of the American consciousness, but what did have a lasting impact on my psyche were the commercials. There were three in particular that immediately spring to mind.

The first, and earliest commercial to mould and forge my impressionable young mind was a public service advert about smoking. This animated short featured the three pigs and their old nemesis: the Big Bad Wolf. This wolf wasn't a "huffer and puffer." No. He was a flat out puffer - 2 pack-a-day, stinky ass clothes, yellowed toothed "Fweeeeep... Ahhhh. Flavour country " smoker. When it came time to blow the house down, he could barely muster up enough breath to blow out a birthday candle.

That sh*t was just flat out scary. In fact, it was this indelible vignette that served as the impetus for me to quit smoking. After years of attempting to woo the ladies through a hazy cloud of Camel Lights, I finally decided I'd had enough (along with the fact that I played soccer on a team that seldom had substitutes to relieve me in my hacking and wheezing.)

Then there's the Trix commercials. These plugs nudged me towards altruism. Those little sh*theels that denied the poor rabbit the simple pleasures of a bowl of sugary cereal drove me to odium. What's a bunny gonna do if he gots a sweet tooth. Rather than lookin' out for a brother, these little cretins yoinked the sh*t right out of his hands. There's an endearing group for you. Then again, kids in commercials have always annoyed me like underwear in my crack.

It's not so much that I know behind the cameras lie a deluded stage mom delighted to have sold her child to shill-dom, but as a general rule, kids in commercials, particularly lately, strike me as as*holes. Ever see that commercial where that middle school kid's mother gives him a Pop Tart on the way out the door? Then he runs into 'Kid B,' who gives him the contraband Toaster Streudel. When they finally get to Sh*tbag Jr. High School Kid B asks Kid A what he does with all the Pop Tarts just as an avalanche of uneaten Pop Tarts hits the floor. F*ck you, you little ingrate. If you're not going to eat the Pop Tarts have the decency to tell your mother to stop spending her hard-earned money on them.

Finally, anybody over the age of 30 will likely remember that advert featuring a Native American dude, paddling a canoe across a litter filled creek. As he stands by the roadside, Whitey comes along and chucks a take out container of spaghetti and meatballs out of the window of their 1974 Chrysler POS. The only thing that might keep this commercial from re-airing is that it toes the line of ethnic stereotypes - the same ethnic stereo-type that felled the laundering 'Chinaman' and his "Ancient Chinese Secret: Calgon".

Judging by the amount of sh*t that accumulates on my heavily trafficked front yard, I'd say this commercial wasn't as memorable to other members of the community. You know who you are, sh*tbird. You're that same lousy parent that allowed your children to make phrases such as "Please," "Excuse me" and "Good morning" as archaic as "groovy" and "jive." Yeah, I see the byproducts of your ovum and sperm walk past twenty-eight garbage cans on garbage day and instead toss their heavily salted "Frito Lay" bag in my garden upon finishing it. I wouldn't mind it if it were biodegradable, but then again, healthy food is beyond your grasp.

I noticed that the eating habits of the average litterbug borders on sh*tty. A steady stream of grease stained pizza plates, McDonald's soda pop cups, Hostess doughnut & ice-cream sandwich wrappers and the aforementioned corn chip bags will attest to the fact that this walking sack of fat and bones has a bloodstream that flows as smoothly as toothpaste. It's comforting to know that this person will likely die soon, but in their wake they will leave another generation who tosses cigarette packs and losing lottery tickets on the sidewalk without compunction.

I'd be willing to take the place of Iron Eyes Cody. It won't be a tear you see on my cheek. You'll see a twitch of rage, a clenched fist and a chubby Hispanic male running up the street, shouting "Come back here, you c*ck-sucker. Come pick this up before I jam this pizza box in your ass. Sideways!"


The Puppy That Shat

By Dr. 'Soose'

(The following's been inspired by my son's potty mouth and the 38 lbs. of dog feces I just carted into the trash can after months of procrastination. Other titles I considered were "Curtis Leaves a Log," "Brown Poo, Green Poo on my Two Shoes" and "She Sees Feces.")

I was once wild and carefree and young
I lived in a house with a yard free of dung
It was my bright idea to bring home a mutt
From the Second Chance Boxer (Should have kept my mouth shut).

"It'd be great for the kids," I convinced my dear wife
"Just remember," she said, "it's a commitment for life.
She grew up with dogs. I went without puppies
Instead I had cats, birds, cockroaches and guppies.

I had no idea what a dog would entail
'He'll bring my my newspaper, slippers and mail.
I'll take him for walks. He'll scare away thieves.
Romp through the yard, jumping into fall leaves.'

After months' worth of begging she finally relented
We brought home the dog and my heart was contented.
The kids took a shine to him. Curtis, they named him.
It's taken monumentous efforts to tame him.

He jumps on our visitors, counters and tables
Eats the kids' toys and chews on the cables
He rarely obeys nor does he bring me the news
All he does is bark, eats his kibbles and poos.

My four-year old son asked me "What rhymes with poo?"
"Well, let's see son. There's shoe..." "And canoe!"
Said my wife as she stood in the kitchen
"And zoo," she would add 'fore she started the bitchin'.

"It's nice out, you know, and the yard's full of poo.
It's something a decent pet owner should do.
He's run out of room to heed nature's call
Do you care for this poor beast's welfare at all?"

In an attempt to ignore her, as I'm apt to do
I continued to think of more rhyme words for 'poo'
"There's 'clue' my dear son, and also 'ah-choo'
And the literary hero, 'Mr. Magoo.'"

"Quit stalling," said my spouse from the sink.
"The neighbors will no doubt complain of the stink."
I must admit I get ill from such messes.
Though I change many diapers and clean O.P.S.S.-es
(Thats 'Other People's Shit Streaks' in the toilet. GOOD GUESSES!)

I puttered about, dreading the task to be done
Wallowing in shit's not my idea of fun
I'd walked him and fed him... played with him when sober,
But the yard I'd not de-pooped since October.

'It's got to be done,' I thought with a sigh,
Lest the shit pile up to my two year old's thigh.
I gulped down my adams apple and started to gag
As I pondered what I was to put in that bag.

I was hoping the Cat in the Hat would come to assist.
"That's all you, bro" said the Cat. "I bury my shit.
The same goes for my friends Thing One and Thing Two
There's no way we're helping you clean up that poo."

It's been a mild winter, I'd be pressed to lament
I put on my boots - and to the yard I went
Wishing I had 'Va-poo-rize', from that old Jack Black flick
The yard was all muddied, with dog turds and sticks.

I thought they'd disintegrate, freeze or congeal
I lacked the entusiasm, spirit and zeal
When I found them all sloppy, and almost intact
I almost passed out... that is a fact.

The task, I began it like a good little soldier
What I found in the yard? You wouldn't believe it if I told you.
Some of the turds were ground into the dirt
There were fragments of toys, and the remains of a shirt.

What this dog has eaten, I can't possibly know
Along with his dog food? Well, it might be Play-Doh.
I couldn't help but admire how we'd all been bested
As I looked at the goodies he'd only half-digested.

Some turds were like nuggets, others crumbled like dust
One looked like salt. Believe me you must.
The afternoon dragged as did the bag full of shit
I looked 'round the yard. "Can this really be it?

"I'm finished," I yelled to my wife in the kitchen.
"I've cleaned it all up, now please stop your bitching."

The yard was all clean, free from shit, crap or poo.
For how many days? Maybe one? Maybe two?


Happy Belated Birthday, Bill Murray Edgar.

Every January 19th, a mysterious character drops by the gravesite of Edgar Allan Poe to drop off some roses and a bottle of cognac. A nice way to celebrate his birthday, if you ask me. Apparently, this guy's been doing it for fifty-seven years, which means one of two things:

1. The gentleman got this bright idea in his early twenties and is now in his late seventies or eighties. I doubt anybody younger than nineteen would have had any trouble purchasing liquor back then, but the gesture requires the capacity for reverence and a touch of sublety that is absent in the teen years.

2. It's been more than one guy during that time-span.

Either way, it's a case of "I wish I'd thought of that." So, not to be undone, I tought I'd compile a list of notable birthdays and ways to 'pay props' to those who have passed before us on their birthdays - month by month (for the rest of the year).

FEBRUARY - After braving travel through (yawn) Indiana to Fairport Fairmount, I'll stop by the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles for a copy of their driver's manual to drop off at Park Cemetery along with a tube of Neosporin for the cigarette burns on James Dean's remains.

MARCH - There's the old joke, that if Mama Cass would have given Karen Carpenter a bite of her sandwich, they'd have both lived. Anorexia Nervosa is nothing to joke about... so I won't be leaving Karen any sandwiches at her resting place. No Cheetos, either. Karen gets a copy of a Dixie Chicks CD. There's a lesson to be learned from Natalie Maines: a gal who can take getting called "chubby" without succumbing to self-destructive eating disorders.

APRIL - (Goddamnit! Indiana!) Nothing says NASCAR like missing teeth and Schlitz. At Dale Earnhardt's grave I'd like to leave a novelty sticker of a mischievous little boy peeing on the logo and number of the other hick that drove him off the track.

MAY - Though I'd need little coaxing to muster up a trip to Paris, I'd stop by the Pere Lachaise cemetery, stop by (no, not Morrison's grave...) Isadora Duncan's resting place with a feather boa and a bottle of ACME brand axle grease.

JUNE - Norma Jean Baker... Ah... you were so young (sniff-sniff) A candle in the wind, indeed, but a doorknob is more apropos... as is a tube of KY jelly.

JULY - California has cornered the market on notables' graves. Ronald Reagan, whom some consider to be one of America's greatest presidents, rests in Simi Valley. Anybody know where I can get a pair of beer goggles there? Nancy Davis? Even a 'B' lister himself could have bagged himself a hotter piece of ass... particularly after Jane Wyman (grrrrrrowl).

AUGUST - Though there's no real gravesite to visit, I'm sure there's enough fish crap in the waters of the Ganges and Pacific Ocean for me to pay tribute to the ashes of Jerry Garcia. Thanks for the legacy of hippiedom.

SEPTEMBER - Another cremated notable rests in Lake Geneva, Switzerland. To honor the memory of Faroukh Bulsara, I'd like to throw a pair of leather chaps into its waters.

OCTOBER - If anybody ever ventures out to Heptonstall Churchyard in Yorkshire England and finds the knobs to a Viking 36" VGSO near Sylvia Plath's grave, you'll know I was there. The boogers probably belonged to Ted Hughes.

NOVEMBER - At the risk of sounding maudlin, I'd love to leave Rodney Dangerfield (choke) something he always wanted... (wipe of tears)... Respect... Auuugghhh.... (sound of sobbing and scampering feet fading into distance)

DECEMBER - What can you say about Keith Richards... (oh. wait.. he's still alive.) Oh well. I guess that just leaves Heather O'Rourke, who get's a 15 minute egg timer left for her at Westwood Memorial Park along with a dusty VHS copy of Poltergeist III.


We Sold our Soul in Vain

Oh Mighty Satan! Where you 'been? Back in the day, you used to reign supreme in the pantheon of rock. If you weren't being praised outright by bands such as Venom and Slayer, you were paid homage to in secret and clever acronyms, such as AC/DC - All Children are the Devil's Children and KISS - Knight's in Satan's Service. We played our LPs backwards in hopes that you would coax us into sacrificing a squirrel by jamming an M-80 up its ass. We donned your image proudly on our $15 long-sleeve "beefy-t's. You manifested your nefarious presence on our school desks in the form of a pentagram or signature '666'.

Though your followers, denizen of homogenously white suburbs and trailer parks, numbered in the millions, you've since become a footnote in the mighty tome of rock. We still find your vibe elsewhere, most recently in the following acronym:


Shamelessly down the

Throats of
Assholes and other

Evidenced by the fact that there were at least ninety drastically reduced and unsold copies of his debut solo album at the recent 'Going Out of Business-Everything Must Go' sale at Media Play, it's clear that your powers are waning. I realize you're quite busy trying to collectively run the White House, keep American Idol and other reality shows on the air while at the same time, keeping the careers of Queen Fajita and Jim Carey afloat. That's no excuse for your misguided and lame attempts to rule the multiverse. You're coming off a bit fallacious, man... and you are making life miserable for those who loved you most. You've taken the form of Dave Matthews, Dick Cheney and Dr. Phil while making an incoherent, walking joke out of Ozzy. Oh, and thanks a lot for Marilyn Manson. That was about as evil as chihuahua shit.

You're losing your lustre in my book. Either bring back the magic, or go the f*ck back to hell. And take Jessica Simpson with you, beee-yatch.

(goat's horns)


Second Reading: Also from the Book of Emesis...

I've been an English teacher for five years now, and due to our student body's high absentee rate I've been the recipient of my share of "Signed, Epstein's Mother"s.

One such classic is:

Dear Mr. Prego,
Alda was absent yesterday because of a family problem but everything's okay now.

(Alda's Aunt)

Then, there's the garden variety trailer park note:

Mr. Prego,

Please excuse Michael from school on 11-14-05 because,
he broke his toe and tore his nail bed.

Thank You,
Mrs. Jones

Ouch. A broken nail bed is nothing to laugh at. It makes the hairs on the back of my calf curl just thinking about it.

You also have the fail-proof:

Mr. Prego

Ray stayed home yesterday because he had a 24 virus. Please excuse
my son.

Mrs. Minnows

I'm sure she meant one of those 24 hour bugs; you know the ones that say, "Yo, I'm going to f*ck wit' dis kid here today, then I'm bouncin'." I always wonder if viral middle management frowns upon overtime for these workers. I'm sure they might want their union to look into it.

Virus A "Shit... they hooked up HIV with a long-term contract, and the mother f*ckers at Bird Flu are cashing in."
Virus X "Don't get too greedy. Remember what happened to Tuberculosis. And those cats over at the SARS sector are even getting laid off."

After years of being on the receiving end of these notes, I now grudgingly find myself on the giving side of the transaction. Fortunately, since the O-Dog started pre-kindergarten I've only needed to write one note. I must admit I pretty much took the perfunctory route. Today, the O-Dog again finds himself at home, which means I have to provide him with a note to take to school tomorrow. Hopefully I won't have to write too many of these in the upcoming years, as I would hope he and the Fletch Monster continue to have a relatively healthy, happy childhood.

In any case, today, my co-worker "V" showed me the notes she was sending her children's teachers. They were pretty goddamned funny. Following her example, I hope to elevate the "note" to a higher art form and inspire all parents to do the same. It makes it much more interesting for the reader. There is a fine line in discerning between quality writing and verbal trilling (nobody likes reading sesquipedalian drivel), but the aims here are two-fold: to document my son's absence for the school's record and to do so while making the teacher smile.

Dear Mrs. Davis,

You might have noticed that my son the O-Dog was amiss yesterday. It seems some miscreant microbe took it upon himself to use my son's gastro-intestinal system as his own personal playground. Whatever this little creature was doing in there must have been a vigorous activity, since it caused my son to empty the contents of his stomach onto his bed linen at 8 pm on Wednesday. The acrobatics continued well into the evening, as the O-Dog retched thrice more before daybreak.

After several trips to the bathroom and a couple of bed spreads, the O-Dog and I finally got some sleep. Yesterday morning, I thought it best to keep him at home, lest his little inhabitant decide to continue his escapades. The tenant has since been evicted, though I'm not sure through which thoroughfare.

Mr. Prego

Ah... that's too verbose. I think I might stick with the "24 virus."


Tale of the Tape - Presley v. Poe

A Teleplay

This opus is inspired in part by the birthdays of Elvis Aaron Presley (January 8th) and Edgar Allan Poe (January 19th) and by the fact that I just realized that they both have the same initials.

(ABC Sports Theme Song Fades)

Howard Cosell
Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen. This - is - Howard Co - sell. Tonight's title fight promises to be a mo-nu-mental - a colossal - a spec-tacular event between two warriors. What more can be said about Elvis Presley. A man who rose from humble beginnings in East Tupelo, Mississipi and Memphis to - reach - worldwide acclaim on the rock & roll carousel.

Edgar Allan Poe, a-bandoned by his father at - the - age - of - one, and orphaned a year later when his mother succumbed to tu-ber-cu-losis. He pulled himself up by his li-te-rary boot straps to become a prolific author to be reckoned with. A man who knows the meaning of the word inebriated, lubricated and pixilated... With me here is boxing legend and griller extraordinaire, George Foreman.

George Foreman
How are you, Howard?

MAG - nificent. What's your take on today's battle, George?

Well, Howard, Edgar's been Nevermore for over one-hundred and fifty years. Fortunately, all the alcohol in his system's preserved him pretty well. On the other hand, the King looks like shit.

He sure does, George, but these fans don't seem to mind.

Of course they don't, Howard. But this man ain't a fighter. That Kung Fu shit didn't fool me in the Seventies and it ain't going to do him any good now.

Good observation, George. Though as in the case of Poe, the large quantities of pharmaceuticals he consumed in his lifetime has also conserved him in the twenty-eight years since his passing.

It seems these men lived parallel lives, Howard.

Indeed, they have. They both barely made it into their forties when they passed away. They both served in the armed forces, though Poe was unceremoniously dismissed from West Point while Elvis was honorably discharged after licking envelopes in Germany

And, they both dug jailbait, Howard.

How do you mean?

Well, for one, that ain't all Elvis was licking in Germany. He met Priscilla there, who was only fourteen at the time, and Edgar was a Romantic Era-Jerry Lee Lewis, marrying his thirteen year old cousin Virginia Clemm in 1836.

George, Elvis and Priscilla married in 1967, when she was about twenty-two years old.

Howard, you don't think he was hitting that ass?

No, George, I don't. The King is a Christian gentleman.

Yeah, right. And I'm Mike Tyson's daddd... Is that a sandwich? Holy shit. The King's eating a sandwich. (Shouting to Presley) Hey fool, put down that goddamned sandwich are you crazy? At least use one of my grills to let the grease drip off that mother f*cker.

Ladies and gentleman, this is truly a sight. I have never before seen a buffet table put in a boxer's corner before. The man is insane.

Aw... shit. This match is over before it begins. This fool is here cramming all kinds of fried shit down his throat, while that creepy little bastard in that other corner is downing the Old Fashioneds like they was Gatorades.

(Drinking from a flask) Ahem... I think we're about ready to start.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Welcome to Rust-Belt Gardens - Tonight's title bout features two deceased heavyweight pugilists. In this corner, at a height of 6' and weighing in at approximately 288, otherwise known as Kid Galahad & Elvis the Pelvis. The King of Rock & Roll, Ellllvisssss Presleyyyyyyy!

(Crowd roars)

And in this corner, at 5'10", weigh 145 lbs. literary giant, the Macabre Master of Disaster... Maven of Ravens.... EDGAR ALLAN P - 0 - 0 - E - E - E!!!!

(Polite applause)

Howard Cosell
Well, we know who the crowd favourite is.

Okay boys, I want a clean fight. Nothing below the belt... Um... Elvis, can you put down that pot roast.

Sorry, suh.

Okay... you know the rest. And you, Eddy, none of your funny business. No pick-axe, no broken bottles.

I assure you, sir, I shall fight (hic) honorably.

(turns face from Poe, disgusted by his breath) Are you sure you're okay to fight?

(Hic) I have never felt better. (Thud)

Um can we get a Doctor over here? The f*cking rummy just passed out.
(Commotion) Elvis, where are you going?

The throne. These pork rinds have loosened something in here.

For crying out loud...

(Elvis proceeds to the bathroom, where we hear a flush and a resounding thump)

Ladies and gentlemen, there you have it. Two brilliant careers cut short: One by gluttony and addiction, the other by the fiend intemperance. Though you might think that men and women might learn by their example, regrettably, others are sure to follow. For George Foreman and ABC Sports, This is Howard Cosell.

You didn't tell 'em to buy my grill.

I think Elvis bought a truckload before he went to the shitter. Now where's the nearest bar?

(ABC Sports Outro fades)


Cheers, mate!

There are a lot of revelations, the older you get: There is no Santa, Easter Bunny or god..., your "Gay-dar" begins to work (I never would have believed... Paul Lynde??? ) and "Kill the Wabbit" was not an Elmer Fudd original, but was instead based on some Germanic musical ditty. More interestingly, Andy Capp becomes a role model.

Firstly, he's eloquent and speaks his mind - also, he makes up for his lack of skills and shortcomings with resourcefulness. His "devil-may-care" attitude might not help him win any popularity contests, but hey... who else won popularity contests besides Marcia Brady?

Secondly, he doesn't understand women any more than the rest of us. In this sissy-ass age of Dr. Phil and that couch jumping "fella" Tom Cruise, harking back to the days when men and women were cut from different jibs once in a while makes us actually more attractive to each other.

Lastly, on behalf of my balls, I'd like to thank him for his patented, and unconventional sleeping style. As any father can tell you, sleeping on the couch with a couple of kids is a risky endeavor, since the young 'uns invariably target the testes as they dash across the living room in your direction.

If that's not enough, he proudly endorses the greatest 'drunk' snack since beernuts. Sure, they're lowbrow and about as nutritious as sand, but in a pinch, there is nothing tastier. Well, maybe a nice Dagwood sandwich, but who's got the time or dexterity to pull that one off at 1 a.m.?

Here's to you, Andy. Sure, you're an unemployed lout, have a tendency to womanize and, worst of all, you're British, but you're all right in my book. Flo is lucky to have you.


Um... So...

A couple of weeks ago, in the height of the holiday season, the O-Dog and I were walking around Elmwood Avenue when we came upon a troupe of costumed Christmas characters. Santa, of course, being the main draw. After making like Frogger to cross the street, we caught up with St. Nick, did the old sit on the lap routine and came home with one pretty jazzed kid.

Me: Tell mommy who we saw, Rock.
O-Dog: Santa Claus.
Mommy: Wow. Did you tell him what you wanted?
O-Dog: Yeah.
Me: Who else did you see?
O-Dog: Rudolph, Frosty and Santa's Mother.

Santa's Mother.

Either Mrs. Claus is not aging as gracefully as her husband or the O-Dog has not yet grasped the concept of wedded bliss. Should I fill
him in? Not according to Bill, my defensive partner on my hockey team.

"I don't know why we bother to tell them."

Somehow I think the kids pick up the concept osmotically. For example, there's a little girl in my son's Pre-K class who says she wants to marry my son.

"Next time she says that to you, little buddy, say, 'What's the hurry, baby? We're only four.'"
(Punch from wife.)

As a guy, you just don't get all that warm and fuzzy about mah-wage. I mean "mah-wage is what bwings us togethah," but the male gender of the human species tends to mature a lot slower than our female counterparts. We just have a lot more fun single... There's much more time for play (you'd never get me out of a hockey rink). Our bills, checking accounts and carefree spending habits are our own business. Our weekends are our own. The drunk girl at the bar that just puked on her shoes might actually be fun to talk to. The tomatoes that just fell out of your sandwich can be picked up at your leisure, even if it takes weeks.

There are many other perks. You don't have to tell anybody their ass doesn't look big. You can drink out of the carton. You don't have to empty your browser cache, history, etc. on a daily basis and the bathroom is the perfect and logical place for porn. If you find the girl you're hanging out with is a bit of a pain in the ass, you could just not call her... I could go on.

For these and many more reasons, I find it difficult to say "Congratulations," to a man when he gets engaged or married. In fact, I abandoned the practice altogether. It leads to some awkwards moments, since people seem to expect it.

Me: (to college classmate holding news clipping of his new wife) Is that your wife?
College Classmate: Yeah. I just got married three weeks ago.
Me: ... ... ... ... So, ... um. What are you taking next semester?

I realize it's a natural progression, and in most cases ends up being a move in the right direction for some, but in any case, congratulations just doesn't seem to fit.

Funny enough, today is the anniversary of my engagement. Six years ago, the Whores (Buffalo Sabres) were playing the Toronto Maple Leafs. The .0002 carat ring had been in my possession four about three or four weeks. I decided to propose between the second and third periods, provided of course, the Whores were winning.

At the end of two... Buffalo 8 - Toronto 0.

That sealed my fate.

In hindsight, I'm glad the Sabres won. I love my wife, we've got a great couple of kids. We're a tremendously happy family. I don't remember if anybody congratulated me or not. (Nobody WARNED me or PREPARED me, that's for sure.) I don't think I needed to hear congratulations or advice. No high fives or shots of Cuervo. I wouldn't trade where I am now for anything... but were congratulations truly in order? Maybe just a set of earplugs to use in case of emergency, a partial lobotomy and a primer in how to say "I love you," and "You look great tonight," even though I already think it.

Happy 'Anniversary' Mrs. Claus. You do look great tonight.