Friday, November 26, 2010

Renovations can go die under a tractor

Barely a week ago, it seemed as if my ability to turn a blank piece of paper into a graceful, poignant masterpiece about my genitals was slowly drifting away from me. I had lost my jump. Writing, which had always been second nature to me, even as a child, was now a mysterious, impenetrable fog. Everything I tried to write felt forced and awkward, and quickly plummeted to a harsh oblivion. I attributed this to the fact that I haven't been getting out much lately. I knew that when I did, something stupid would eventually have the good grace to show itself, so I could needlessly make fun of it.

As it turns out, I didn't need to leave my house to find something at all. It came to me. The irony of this is just sickening, or at least I think this is how irony works. I wanted to get out of my house, hoping to conjur some inspiration, when I didn't actually have to move at all. Now that terror itself has found me, presenting me a golden opportunity to write about something, suddenly I don't feel like writing anymore. Sadly, the reality I'm faced with is harsh, unavoidable, and now it's become personal. I'll be damned if I let the renovations win.

A couple days ago, my father asked me to empty the linen closet downstairs. My father has the unique ability at any moment of his choosing, to pick the very last thing you want to do in the universe. I wondered what the purpose behind this task was, but I didn't ask any questions for fear of getting answers, so I tried not to think about it. Everything became clear to me yesterday when I heard the faint sound of a drill downstairs, my father yelling "fuck" very loudly, followed by what sounded like something getting its shit ruined by a hammer. When shit is getting demolished by hammers, the air smells of renovations. Cold, retarded renovations, or if you beat me at Halo ever. May I present to you, the progression of the room downstairs:

Stage One: Regular linen closet

Stage Two: Linen closet removed to make way for upgraded bathroom

Stage Three: Valuable pipes discovered lingering within the wall designated for smashing. Project crippled, reverted back to regular linen closet with different doors

Stage Four: Several months later, linen closet removed again, upgraded bathroom in progress, and by "upgraded" I mean adding a useless sink and some cabinets, effectively reducing our storage space

Stage Five: What the FUCK?

The feeling this instills is a lot like when I sit down, and accidently sit on one of my testicles. So we're renovating our renovations now. Exquisite. This project is particularly bothersome, not simply because my father can't plan anything properly, but because it's already failed once before, which will drive my father to perform and take several, "creative liberties". These are divided into two distinct categories. The first being what he wants to do, the second being something horrifying or dangerous, which usually happens. I have little faith in the project, partly because I'm an asshole, but mostly because we don't have a good track record when it comes to successful renovations.

Allow me to take you back about a year ago, when my dad endeavoured to renovate the kitchen while my mother was on vacation. I was expecting the counter-tops to come off, all the cupboards to come out, removing the backsplash, etc. etc. All that ended up happening was the mournful removal of a useful spice rack, the stove being disconnected for no fucking reason, the backsplash simply being painted over, and for the icing on this delicious pastry, our counter-tops being painted with some shit that you're only supposed to use outside on your steps, or driveway. I don't even know how you manage to screw that up. There was pictures of people outside on the fucking can.

Not being able to use the stove was a pain in the ass, but starvation wasn't nearly as worrisome, or perhaps as fascinating as watching my father toil away in the face of continual failure and disappointment. You see, the instructions for this material read very plainly that you only need two coats of laminate. It was around coat number seven that my father began to wonder if he'd just destroyed our kitchen and was beyond the point of no return. He'd try and get my brother and I enthusiastic about the project, perhaps in an effort to reverse his mistake, but at a certain point we had a difficult time acknowledging him as our father and instead just stared at him with looks of blank disappointment.
I've never seen someone try and ignore their own better judgement for so long before. At some point he actually ran out of laminate and went out to buy some more. Five coats later and he finally called it quits. The counters weren't going to get any smoother, our kitchen anymore hideous. Naturally the counter-tops were smoother than a pair of titties, being that they were frozen in perpetual laminated terror and looked like stinky asshole, like Han Solo's carbonite prison. The edges of the counters, however, are something that frequently appear in my nightmares.

My father underestimated the viscosity of the material, so while painting it on it leaked over the side to create what is essentially a cheese grater that stretches the entire length of the counters. Every edge is serrated and has every intention of fucking up your hand if you aren't paying attention opening the dishwasher or getting a spoon from the drawer. Best of all, my father didn't bother to cover up any of the drawers or knee cabinets, so bits of material splashed on everything and froze without my father noticing. Being that this material is made to stand up to a fucking ice chipper, my father was forced to violently scrape the material off, making all of our cabinets look like they barely survived a bombardment of shrapnel. The cabinets looked like any building in Stalingrad circa 1942. If the goal of the project was ultimately to surprise my mother, my father certainly succeeded at that. I thought she was going to shit an onion when she got home.

This wasn't the first renovation disaster. My dad unexpectedly blew a hole the size of a basketball in the wall of his bedroom once, we sawed our bathtub in half to remove it, then we had to whip a rug out of the top window of our house because we couldn't get it down the stairs, which left an enormous, penis shaped crater in the front lawn. Well, I suppose those weren't the best examples I could find. Those were all fucking awesome, especially the bathtub. I've never seen anything so goddamn bitchin' in my life. It was like the cover of Metallica's St. Anger album came to life and punched my eyeballs straight in the dick. But the key difference between those examples and this bathroom renovation, is that those were funny, this isn't.

Yet my father is still skipping about the house, acting like he just high-fived an orgasm, completely disregarding his past experiences. I'm much less optimistic. My faith in humanity died long ago when they discontinued Astros candy.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

6 Of My 8 Fears Just Kicked My Ass

This morning, I experienced a sensation most unordinary. It wasn't morning wood, because that happens all the time. You may struggle to believe this, but I felt... good, this morning. In fact, I felt fantastic. This is impressive for someone like me, who is generally acknowledged to be the most miserable asshole on the face of the planet. Nothing could hope to stain my spirits. I woke up before my alarm, it was cold and shitty outside, then I smashed the absolute piss out of my hand on a doorknob. Normally a chain of events like that is the catalyst for hatchet murder or vehicular manslaughter, but I was much too content.

For no reason either. I don't know what it was, but I felt like grabbing my large bags of fairy dust and skipping everywhere I wanted to go, which could be anywhere. Even the moon! My elated state has even driven my parents to conclude that I'm on drugs, which could very well be possible. But the point I'm trying arduously to get to, is that my good mood in the morning caused me to drop my guard, while life was poised to strike.

Allow my well-tuned sense of humour and stunning mastery of Brobdingnagian vocabulary to gently ease you into this chronological list of immobilizing terror.

6. Gardening
It all started when my mom asked me if I could handle some gardening. What's so bad about gardening, you ask? Everything you can imagine, that's what. I'm terrified of gardening, because I fucking suck at it. I don't know anything about it. I have no idea if I'm giving these plants life or murdering them with my gay little shovels. I don't like working under pressure, and there's no immediate shortage of that when you've been ordered to do the gardening. I'm working with someone else's vision that I don't understand, and I'm expected to do a good job. The problem is that I'm all about low expectations. My mind is so gripped by fear when I'm gardening, I can't even pause to laugh at the phrase, "trim the bush".

Ok so maybe I can, but seriously, it's nerve racking. I'm also wearing these girly gloves, picking away at the dirt with my delicate tools (one is this adorable tiny rake), and gently planting lovely little flowers. It gives this inscrutable feeling of unease, like I can feel someone watching me and calling me a homosexual. The thing is, I'm not gay, so it's demeaning work. But my biggest fear while gardening, is my mom coming home, looking at the garden, letting out a little shriek, then uttering the piercing words, "we can fix this..."

I was able to narrow that down for you, because that's exactly what happened. She wouldn't even tell me what I did. She just smiled and walked inside. Why ask me to do something if you know I'm going to fuck it up? Come on! Anyway, while gardening itself is terrifying, it also lends itself to certain abuses. Such as:

5. Farmer's Tan
When you're gardening, it's common knowledge that the practice tends to take place outside. It's also fair to assume that you're doing it on a sunny day (sexual implication not intended). This means you run the risk of a farmer's tan, one that everyone will notice and earn you ceaseless mockery.

There was one year when I was a kid, where my family and I went to Hawaii and I had a nice tan. It was a glorious vacation, where on any given day, you would see me walking out of the ocean with five chicks in each arm. I was a pimp even at the tender age of 12, a time when I thought my dick was only used for urination. I was so naive. It wasn't until much later did I discover the humour in peeing on a building or in someone's pumpkin on Halloween. So perhaps I didn't learn much... Anyway, every year since then, I've rocked the farmer's tan, and every year I tell myself I won't be getting a farmer's tan. However, this year will be different. This year I'm going to bend farmer's tan over a chair and spank its ass with a meat tenderizer.

I feel like I'm disregarding my own experiences by saying that, but this year, I devised a cunning stratagem to elude any possibility of a farmer's tan. I rolled my sleeves up. This exposed my sexy muscles, and farmer's tan was soundly reduced to rubble. My glistening muscles and I laughed, until it dawned on me that while I may have bested farmer's tan, I wouldn't be able to best tan lines in general unless I took a more drastic approach. Unfortunately, it just so happens that one of my fears is:

4. Taking my shirt off

Back in the high school days, I was so sexy that I got every woman in a 10 block radius pregnant just by stepping outside. My sex life was so vigorous you'd think a fucking asteroid was heading towards earth, and I needed to celebrate every last glorious second of life by boning. My dick was invincible. It came to the point where it was difficult to fend off all the hordes of women who wanted a piece of my sexy ass. I caught a bunch on a ladder trying to pry my window open with a crowbar one night. When I went swimming on fridays, my superhuman physique even managed to attract the attention of the monstrous, frightening man who lingered in the hot tub, covertly masturbating.
What has changed over the years? Well now I'm a bitter old man who greatly exaggerates his age, and spends all his time working and doing absurd amounts of school work. I seem to have lost all the pigment in my skin, and I have a veritable forest of errant hairs on my chest. I don't have the confidence to remove my shirt anymore. What if my old ass neighbour walks outside and the sunlight reflects off my chest and blinds her? What if a crowd of attractive women are walking past my house and see me? I don't want to be judged! So until I conquer my fear, it seems that tan lines will again tragically plague my existence this year.

It was at this point where I began to wonder just how the day could possibly get worse. Which is of course when:

3. I went inside to take a break, only to realize that I'd already eaten the last Fudgsicle

2. Failing to jump on a shovel and falling into a tree

Self-humiliation. It's a wonderful thing. An unusual thing. A wonderfully unusual thing. It's when you manage to do something so unimaginably stupid to yourself, all by yourself, that results in extreme humiliation. It's like whenever I'm in the shower and I get shampoo in my eyes. No one but me will be aware of this for as long as I live, so I shouldn't feel bad, but no contrived rationale can convince me that I'm not an idiot.

So after planting a bunch of flowers, I was told to dig up the grass around the tree in my backyard. This is a bothersome task, because it's near impossible to dig the grass up without snapping one of the branches since the fuckers are so low to the ground and stick like a meter out of the trunk. I also found myself attempting to dig through solid roots, so it was necessary at several points to jump moderately high, and land on the shovel to drive it into the earth. I was doing this for the whole lawn, since I didn't feel like stomping on the shovel. When it came time to dig around the tree, however, I knew it would be wise to simply stomp on the shovel, since I couldn't maneuver the shovel in effectively enough for a jump.

However, when I get an idea in my head, regardless of impending, assured moral and spiritual deterioration, it's hard to stop myself. I knew that jumping on the shovel so close to the tree was a stupid idea. I knew that if I did it, that I would fall into the tree and look like an idiot. But it was too late. My brain was already convinced it was an incredible idea, before my body could stop itself. Care to take a guess as to what happened?

I was aware of what just happened. I couldn't laugh it off though. I could only sit there, wallowing in a pool of self-humiliation and ant droppings. Speaking of ants, there was something that I uncovered while digging up my yard:

1. Bugs
I must say, I'm not the biggest fan of insects. It seems that insects are aware of this as well, and do everything in their power to make my life miserable. First of all, I was digging around a tree that blossoms. What do blossoms attract? Bees, of course! What do I not enjoy having near me? Bees! Seeing a 20 year old man running away from a flying fuzzy thing the size of a dime is a sorry ass sight.

Next up on the list is worms. The most horrifying day of my life, I can sincerely remember being that day I walked home from work in the rain, and all the sidewalks, even the goddamn roads, were crawling with tens of thousands of orcs! I mean worms. That's right, millions of disgusting, writhing worms. I thought worms were taking over the fucking world. These were no rabble of mindless worms. These were Urah-Kai! Their armor was thick and their shie- sorry I'll stop this reference now. I ran the whole way home screaming. So naturally, what was the first thing I stumbled on? Why, an enormous colony of earth worms! It didn't bother me too much at first surprisingly. Then I dug up a piece of earth, and I couldn't pick up the goddamn thing with the shovel. I had to pick it up with my hands, but it was covered with worms so I couldn't. I actually got a stick and rolled that bitch to the side of my house. Like balls I'm touching that and having worms crawl under my skin to slowly eat me alive.

Speaking of the side of my house, that's where I was instructed to deposit all the pieces of sod that I was digging up, so they'd dry out faster. The only problem was, that leaning against my house were two ladders. I merely needed to move these ladders five feet over so they would be leaning against the fence, so I would have enough room for all the pieces of sod. Don't be fooled, it only sounds simple.

I knew I had to reach under the ladders to pick them up. This was a dilemma, because being that the ladders have been sitting there for ages, I knew there were going to be spiders under there, and I'm absolutely terrified of spiders. I eventually decided that it was extremely improbable for me to choose the exact spot where a giant spider would be hiding. I mean really, the odds of that are minuscule to the point of being negligible. So I picked up the ladder. I felt something strange on my hand a second after I did it. I looked down to discover an enormous spider on my hand. My immediate reaction was to shake it off. That seemed to work, until I discovered that I'd only managed to propel him onto my chest. I shrieked again, swiped him off, and I got the fuck out of there in the most embarrassing manner possible.

I returned later with a full hazmat suit, ready to move those ladders. I got the first ladder, then I picked up the second ladder. Doing so revealed an enormous colony of insects of unknown classification. I can't describe them, so I drew you a picture:

Like the bulk of insects I dislike, I doubt very seriously that this insect could cause me bodily harm. Sadly, my survival instincts kicked in before I could tell myself that, and I found myself running away again, shrieking vaguely femininely. What a shitty afternoon. I'm hoping tonight will be better, since I'm going to a friend's birthday party, but I just know I'm going to show up, and I'll stumble right into a Goosebumps plot where the populace has transformed into deranged bug people. Fuck.

As for my other fears, I'm afraid of heights in malls, and I'm afraid of my laundry machine. Laugh all you want. Just wait until your laundry machine comes alive, rips your arm off while you're feeding it clothes then eats you alive!

... it could happen!

Monday, November 22, 2010

My Recollection of The Dragonball Evolution Premiere

This is a story that I cannot ever hope to justify to anyone. This is a story of two young adults going out of their way to attend the Dragonball Evolution premiere. There's no way to reiterate that sentence that will explain it for you in a satisfying or logical way, no way to defend my actions. There's only one thing I can do, and that's chronicle the plunge we took into disquieting abashment on April 10th at 7:30pm. Maybe then, you will understand.
Plans to attend the Dragonball Evolution premiere were inscribed in stone long before its release. It was engraved into our very souls the moment it was announced, perhaps even long before, since we always knew the day would come. I say "we" and "our" because I was not alone on this quest. I was accompanied by my comrade Charles, a man equally deranged as I. We were destined to see Dragonball Evolution. We had to see it. It felt almost like it was our duty to see it, after being obsessed with the cartoon as kids. We had high hopes for the film. We were certain it wouldn't disappoint, and do the cartoon complete justice, not pausing to consider that maybe the source material is a little weird and kinda shitty. Watching the trailer only increased our hype for the film. If while watching your nipples don't experience tumescence to the point where it's physically possible to grate cheese with them, you're either a little weird, or you're lying.

... stop lying. Sweet jesus, look at those dislikes.

We had planned to neglect our education and catch the premiere during the day on a friday, where no one we knew would see us. But we discovered that the theater we chose refused to play it in their theaters, and it became clear that we could not enshroud our intent to see Dragonball Evolution. We began our journey later in the evening to the larger movie theater under the faint cover of darkness... in my mother's baby blue car. Yes only hierarchs of society are worthy enough to bare witness to Dragonball Evolution. Despite our excitement, our paranoia held no disguise when we arrived at the theater. We were certain someone we knew would spot us, and instituting a conversation in a movie theater leads to the inevitable question, "what are you seeing?" There would be no way to explain our intent to them. They wouldn't understand. We would be lauded as outcasts, and probably called homosexuals.

Luckily, no one we knew was at the theater. However, the theater was still crawling with people. We were careful not to speak of Dragonball Evolution out loud, and instead referred to it as DBE. We approached the front of the line. There sat a lady who asked me the question, "what can I do for you?" There was no escape from this, so I spoke the words, "I would like one ticket to Dragonball Evolution, please." I tried to fight it, but I burst out laughing before I even finished what I was saying. Telling another human being that I was seeking entertainment from Dragonball Evolution, that I was willing to spend hard earned money on it was absurd. Her reaction made it apparent that she was thinking the same thing. All became quiet, and she just stared at me, disturbed and confused, "... really?" "Yes", I replied.
We walked into theater eleven, expecting to see a mass of avid Dragonball fans, maybe even one or two in Goku costumes. We saw nine people. They were all so mysterious. Who were these people? The only ones I could understand were the two kids who dragged their poor mother along to see it with them. More people entered the theater after us after we'd found our seats, and we reached a final head count of thirteen, including us. Dragonball Evolution was within our grasp.
The lights began to dim. We could scarcely believe it. Dragonball Evolution was here, there was no turning back now. Within moments, Justin Chatwin as Goku, in an effort to make everyone in the audience instantly regret wasting money on a ticket, humiliated everyone by gritting his teeth and "grring" at us. Soon it was James Marsters turn to degrade and mortify us. I don't even remember exactly what he did. I think mostly he just looked like an idiot. If you're wondering why James Marsters sounds familiar, that's because he's Spike from Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Now he plays the part of Piccolo, and he's gonna chew your tits off.

The shit he was taking in this picture must have been biblical
In films where the protagonist still gets random erections in class and has difficulty speaking to women, all you have to do is wait for the unavoidable fight scene with the school douchebag(s). So Justin Chatwin is invited to a party by the hottest bitch ever, and sure enough, upon his arrival to the party, Justin Chatwin got his chance to impress the girl and give those bullies at his school the beatdown, who are naturally at the party, and of course hate Justin Chatwin for no reason, which is actually fairly impressive bully profiling. It may have been ok if it wasn't the most embarrassingly choreographed fight scene I've ever seen. It was the last straw for the man who sat in the back of the theatre, who came to see Dragonball Evolution by himself. He couldn't take that shit anymore, and he got out. Soon after, Chow Yun-Fat as Master Roshi was introduced to us. The camera zoomed in close enough to his face to reveal that he was stoned right the fuck off his balls.

I suspect he needed to be for the entire course of filming to keep himself from committing suicide. This is when three more people left the theater, the woman I mentioned earlier with her two children, now desperate to get them out of there. I'm amazed she had the presence of mind to get her children out with her. She got up so quickly you'd think the theater somehow caught fire. Our ranks were now diminished back to the original nine, all of us determined to make it to the end without suffering haemolacria. The couple that decided a romantic evening of Dragonball Evolution was just the thing their relationship needed could have been having sex in the corner and no one would have noticed.
There are only minor things I can tell you after that. Charles and I turning to each other at the same time at the sight of Joon Park and his enormous, inexplicable drill (an actual drill, not his penis. I know, it doesn't make any sense) and saying, "oh no, is that Yamcha?" The Kamehameha Wave is no longer a giant energy beam of blood murder anymore, but is instead used to light candles and make out with hot Chinese ass, which I can't really argue against, come to think of it. The end fight is easily the most uncomfortable thing I've ever watched, and also, Jamie Chung is the goddamn hottest spank ass bitch ever.

The only question remains, how did the world respond? It scored a 3.3 out of 10 on IMDB. From the thirty seconds I spent researching the matter, it appears Dragonball Evolution has grossed a total of $13,000,000 worldwide, which is laughable and downright embarrassing. There are dozens of websites that exist solely to insure that a sequel is unthinkable. There is a veritable armada of YouTube users, begging you to sign petitions to cease the possibility of a sequel. We know that people behind Dragonball Evolution were intent on releasing a sequel as well, because Charles and I stayed for after the credits (which were two minutes long). After everyone got out of there, we stayed, and watched five seconds of James Marsters in bed, getting his head patted down with a damp cloth by some unknown woman. Oh NO.

It's been weeks since that day, and now I must conjur an opinion on the movie. It doesn't matter how many negative things I, or anybody else says about it. I know I'm going to buy this movie when it comes out, and I know I'm going to watch it again. I also know exactly why Justin Chatwin agreed to playing Goku. Not for his love of the cartoon, but:


Sweet, beautiful jesus

You are forgiven, Justin Chatwin. Movie of the fucking year.