I don’t know where two years went, or how you morphed from that weird, red, helpless little bean with the flailing limbs, drifting, unfocused eyes, scabby belly button and the five alarm shriek to the strange, peculiar, engaging, curious, funny, intense little person you are today, but somehow, there is now this small humanoid who lives in my house as if she has always done so, owns me, and is not afraid to exert power over everyone and everything. Your confidence in your role as the director of our show is amazing - you will never believe this but there was a time before you when we were people who knew just what to do without having you there to tell us! Hard to imagine, I know.
You are affectionate! You will throw your body over me and sit square on my neck if the mood for love overtakes you. You treat me like furniture sometimes, but well loved furniture, the kind you want to curl up on. I am okay with being your furniture. You feed me soggy Cheerios off the tip of your finger, and because I love you, I eat them. God help me, I eat them off your wet hand, because you beam at me with pride and happiness when I do so. “Feed mama. EAT. Eat O’s! Good.”
I love how you see something and you need to examine it. Spoons, plates, the mail, my bra, a comb. And if you get it, you need two. And if you get two, you need three. I love how you stop at three, because we don’t have four of anything, and your grasp on handling disappointment is sometimes…shaky. I like watching you decipher language, like a tiny foreigner adrift in an exotic, confusing land. Your linguistic arsenal is small but powerful, and you grab hold of a new word, turn it over and over in your mind and mouth, and then you wield it like a weapon. The first one was “no”. Well practiced, you became an expert at NO, saying it even when you really meant yes, contorting it into a hesitantly affirmative: “Noooookay.” The urge to say NO was compulsive and irresistible, but secretly, you were game for whatever.
You picked up the pace pretty quickly after that, and made me so proud. “Co co comb. Co co comb.” You lie in your crib at night, singing at the ceiling about combs, and the moon, and me. Caterpillars and milk. Cars! All the things you are thinking about. It is amazing.
I love how you understand If, Then. You want a popsicle (always). If you sit in your high chair, then you can have a popsicle. So you run to your chair, position yourself backwards so I can most efficiently place your ass in said chair, and matter of factly inform me, “In. IN CHAIR. OKAY! Popkickle.”
I love how sincere you are when you explain things to me. When we’re watching some cartoon and something is taking place, a big rock is rolling down a hill and the characters, your heroes, have to do something to prevent chaos. You point at it, and your eyes get big and you say to me, with a grave tone of voice to help me understand how critical the matter at hand is, “Rock. Coming! Big.”
Me: “Yes, baby, the big rock is coming.”
Me: “It’s happening.”
You: “Happening! Problem.”
Me: “It IS a problem! What now?”
Popsicles fix your deepest woes and problems. I know that won’t always be the case. I’m sorry in advance.
It seems unlikely that you’ll ever read this, but you’ll read any number of other things I’ve written just for you. Stories and letters and whole volumes full of our personal mythology, me and my Bah. Adventures you might remember as real, because you’ve heard them so often. But on the off chance you DO read this, know:
- I’m sorry for the inevitable times I will fall short in your eyes
- I love you more than you’ll ever believe
- Making you laugh is the best thing I do
- Whatever you become, it’s okay with me.
Happy birthday, little Two. If you keep getting better at this rate, by Three I’ll explode with pride.
We have talked a bit in the past about what our lives will look like to the eyes of our children and grandchildren. The multitudinous tones of brown from my sepia youth have given way to the twin clichés of chevron and the insidious “pop of color” that everyone’s sick to death of by now. If the “House Tours” are any indication, chevron is on its way out, and good fucking riddance. It’s such a jagged and nervous pattern, like the vital signs monitor of a terminal patient who cannot make up his mind, or the brain waves of a caffeinated hummingbird. Bring on the soothing waves of a more even-keeled, rhythmic pattern, like the quatrefoil of years past.
Everyone knows that in the 1970s, when I was born, everything was tinted brown, but did you also know that everything was incredibly groovy and disco at all times? It was. People under 30 wore bellbottomed pants and people over 30 wore fedoras and drank brown liquids out of brown highball glasses and were frustrated by the young. The generation before that was a vomitous mélange of pastel and chrome. “Grease” was the word, and the way we were feeling. When those feelings gave way to fedoras and highballs is anybody’s guess. Perhaps there was some generational overlap that the Historical Simplification Society failed to denote in its patented Generalization Charts. Maybe there was more than one type of person existing in this nation at any given time, though the idea does seem rather implausible. Would cartoons lie to us? Is it time to start considering that possibility? Next you will be telling me that in the 1930s, people wore garments other than zoot suits, ragamuffin tatters, and victory rolls. Or was that the 1940s. Everything before 1956 is a blur. When did mummies walk the earth?
In any case, the generations are clearly demarcated by their respective stylizations, and because I like to perceive things through the eyes of an alien anthropologist, I have used various social media platforms to observe what Little13 will think of the time her parents lived, based primarily on Pinterest Trends and the like.
1. In 2014, headless women with fresh, pale manicures held out attractive casseroles, apples, and cakes, using both hands.
2. In 2014, it became mandatory for all kitchen cabinets to receive a coat of white paint.
3. In 2014, it was customary to festoon kitchen windows with sprigs of greenery in attractive glass vessels.
4. In 2012, everyone owned a “statement necklace”, which was the lingo of the time for “ugly necklace”.
5. In 2014, everyone traded in their statement necklace for an expensive gray sweatshirt.
6. In 2011, historians discovered that Morocco was the cradle of humanity, and all American households were required, by law, to contain a tagine.
7. In 2013, the world collectively agreed not to eat any more cupcakes.
8. In 2012, the American Pediatrics Association discovered that children without their names painted on their bedroom walls grew up believing they had no names. Home décor trendsetters took note.
9. In 2014, taking a cue from people with life-threatening allergies, the fashion industry released a mandate that all women must wear thin gold chains with stamped tags around their necks. Those without allergies wore tags that noted this, for reference purposes.
10. In 2010, all women under the age of 25 were made to use a photograph of themselves lying in a grassy field next to an old-fashioned typewriter as their driver’s license photo.
Luckily, a new age is on the horizon. Next year marks the midway point of this decade, and as we have clearly observed, each decade paints a clear border around the styles and trends of the day. So we are well on our way to the style of…THE FUTURE! Let us boldly go.
Look. I love David Bowie! In fact, he was my first (human) (maybe) childhood crush after the (baffling) affection I had for the Disney Robin Hood fox. David Bowie as the Goblin King, with his giant hair and his weird eye and his bulging package haunted my pre-pubescent dreams for reasons I did not understand at the time. Steal my baby brother, Goblin King!
Yesterday, on the bus, there were two women jabbering away behind me about their plans for the weekend and a line from David Bowie’s “China Girl”, a song I never think about at all, came rushing to the front of my memory: “just you shut your mouth”. And it suddenly occurred to me that I did not know any of the other lyrics to that song, or understand the context under which David Bowie’s little China girl would say such a thing to him when he gets excited. So, I looked up the lyrics. Which cleared up basically nothing. As I was by this point in Super Sleuth Mode, I then looked up the video in hopes that some helpful visuals would be presented that would assist me in deciphering the code of a world in which a man would give his little China girl eyes of blue and ruin everything she is, and also to drown out the cacophony of Bronx squawkers chiming in behind me, at which time I was confronted with this:
Please watch that video! It is important for you to see how terrible the video is in order to comprehend the point I am about to make!
Right off the bat I was rewarded with this, setting the stage for the world in which I was about to be immersed. Presenting, the China girl, adrift in a hazy, semi-translucent miasma:
David Bowie’s face fills the screen, and he begins to croon his sentiments in a guttural tone. Shades of the school portraits of the early 1980s, where a disembodied head floats in the ether above the head of the main subject:
I am transported back to Picture Day, in my finest assembly blues and whites, visions of David Bowie gyrating his flapping package in the general vicinity of his China girl’s incorporeal right shoulder. It’s okay, she can’t feel it. She’s on another plane. David Bowie is not done with us yet!
A disembodied hand floats out of the lower edge of the frame and begins pawing at China girl’s face. Impassive, she allows this to happen, and we think this is the worst thing that will happen for the remainder of the video, but lo we are incorrect in that assumption. Only a quarter of the way through this video, at one minute and thirteen seconds, this occurs:
And I can barely continue. But, for the sake of research and diligently completing this post, I do so. For you, I do so.
Various assorted things take place. Chinese type things. Tea is consumed. China girl flashes her disgusting fingernails. David Bowie wears a top hat and walks through the desert with a man in khaki shorts, presumably a UPS driver, destined to deliver him to the end of the song and therefore the video, which is not nearly at its conclusion according to the progress bar. Jesus.
Special effects! David Bowie runs through the streets in black and white, grimacing! He makes this face:
You can tell that dramatic things are afoot for China girl. David Bowie snatches a bowl of rice from her hands and flings it into the air, and I begin to question my dedication to seeing this project through to its fruition. I soldier on. Bowie and China girl hug on the bed. Aerial view, then profiles. There is beach sexing:
With tongues, which I could have done without:
And then there’s a conflict of some kind, and another China girl appears on the scene. Just when it’s starting to take a turn, the video ends and I find myself in the present day, where nobody is wearing giant suits, or doing it in the ocean froth, or growing their fingernails out like that. Thank the fucking lord.
The point is this. David Bowie, in spite of this, is great. Imagine some youngster trying to pull this shit today. It would be a career ender. Not for Bowie. He produced this monstrosity that I’ve now watched through TWICE, in full, and I still kind of want to move in with him.
He’s our Big Boss of the Day. China girl, wherever she may be now, is our auxiliary backup Boss in case David Bowie is busy being too awesome to fulfill his duties, such as they are.
And if neither of them is available, the following youtube commenter is our third place winner:
Congratulations David, Girl, and Commenter Juls Riz. You guys reign supreme until next week, so live it up.
Many years ago, when I was suffering from the worst of my insomnia, I recall staying up very late and watching infomercials, because I love them. The people in these things are so delightfully inept, and so charmingly challenged by the every day obligations of humans on planet earth. But this one infomercial I’m about to tell you about was a different story altogether. These people weren’t flummoxed by the prospect of hanging a shelf without bashing a hammer through the wall. These people weren’t stumped by the gargantuan effort of getting an egg out of a frying pan without accidentally cutting their own arms off and dying in a pool of blood on the kitchen floor. They had bigger problems than stuck brownies. Well, SORT OF.
This is called “foreshadowing”.
You see, these people were chronically constipated, until they discovered a terrifying new product that you order off the teevee that causes you to have HORRIFIC BOWEL MOVEMENTS, which you then DANGLE FROM A STICK IN FRONT OF A CAMERA. I swear to god I didn’t dream this infomercial. These people had ingested an abdominal flush pill of some kind which caused them to excrete terrifying sheets of matter. To show how utterly incredible and horrific their productions were, they draped them over a stick and presented them for review.
Basically I was looking at human poop in a commercial.
The message you were meant to take away from this was that the pill being sold was so successful that people had no choice but to show off what had once been packing their works, now that the train was running on time, so to speak.
That’s more like it!
The message my sleep-deprived brain came up with was more like, “My god, just how much poop IS that?”
If only I’d known about today’s Astonishing Shit You Can Buy, and let’s all take another moment to thank DJ D once more.
Last Friday had been a trying day for a variety of reasons, but when 5:00 rolled around, I was in good spirits. It was time to beat a hasty path to my home, which is my haven, where everything is just right and the people I love most in this world are waiting for me. I caught the bus with nary a second to spare and settled into one of the few vacant seats on the entire crowded commuter bus.
It is said that when a space on NYC public transit seems conspicuously vacant, there is usually a good reason which has only yet to be discovered. Often it’s the empty subway car on a packed rush hour express train, which contains one wild, diseased pigeon that got on board somewhere in Brooklyn and is now fighting mad, or else it’s the sleeping maniac with his smelly feet un-shoed laying sprawled across an entire row of seats, his various blood-stained weapons strewn lazily about his person, or else it’s the massive pile of unspecified (human? canine?) dung, or the mariachi band (really) or the guy trying to hand out sandwiches.
In this case, last Friday, when I was so worn out from a long day and the bus was so full but for that one seat up by the front that I haplessly settled my weary ass into, it was the two heavily Bronx accented Mary Kay sales ladies. They were righteously put upon by something, and they were hatching a plan.
The first, I’ll call her Mary Kay, was by far the ringleader of the two-woman ring. She was large and in charge, and her narrative carried me through 90 minutes of rush hour traffic. The second I’ll call Jen, because as I discovered over and over, that was her name.
My ride went something like this.
Mary Kay: That store sells the most fine-ass dresses in all of New York. And that place over there is the best Dominican bakery. I’ve only ever been to one Dominican bakery but that was it and it was the best.
Mary Kay: They make the best-ass samwiches at that deli.
Jen: Oh yeah?
Mary Kay: So listen. You have to call the Mary Kay office and tell them you don’t want to be a Mary Kay salesperson. Tell them you signed up by accident, like you didn’t know what you were doing at the time. Then we call back and you sign up again under me. Then I get the credit.
Mary Kay: That’s the store where I got my prom dress! So you call them and tell them you need to get out of their list. Do it right now! Their office closes in less than an hour. I’ll do it.
Mary Kay: Listen, my friend didn’t mean to sign up to be a salesperson. She didn’t know what she was signing. So can you get her off the list? You have to talk to her? Okay she’ll call you in a minute. Yeah she made a terrible mistake.
Jen: I think my dad is cheating on my mom.
(silence for two minutes).
Mary Kay: Okay I think I got you off their list. So listen, you call them now, and then on Monday you call them and tell them you made a mistake, and you want to sign up again, but this time you want to sign up under ME. I get a credit if you do that. Why do you think your dad is fuckin’ around?
Jen: I saw him kiss some other woman before she got into the car on (local street).
Mary Kay: Call the Mary Kay office now and get off their list! You have to call them before six o’clock.
Bus Driver: Attention passengers, can you please not use your cell phones on the bus? Thank you.
Mary Kay: Call the office now!
Jen: I’ll call Monday. I’m really sad about my dad.
Mary Kay: Yeah, it sounds like he’s cheating on your mom. Well listen, at the end of your life, when you die, no matter what you do, you’re all alone. Your husband, your parents, even your kids leave you at the end. We all die alone, and in the end, we’re still stuck with our own lives. So, you gotta do what’s right for you.”
Jen: Yeah, I guess so.
Mary Kay: So, to hell with your dad. Your mother should fuckin’ leave his pathetic ass.
Just like that, I went from wanting to festoon the ceiling of the bus with Mary Kay’s quivering innards to wanting to stand up and applaud. Gotta admit, I wasn’t expecting anything even remotely profound to come out of that big, stupid, vapid, foundation-smeared head and yet here we were, with me so pleasantly surprised right when I was feeling most murderous. Sure, she followed up with a few more phone calls and a lot more scheming for that big fat makeup commission or whatever she gets when she cons one of her colleagues out of a referral, and sure she pointed out all the restaurants we passed that she’d never been to but recommended highly based on the sign, and sure I went back to hating her within milliseconds, but for just that one moment, she was a prophetess, there to deliver an important message for all, literally ALL on that entire crowded bus, to hear.
At the end of your life, you’re gonna die alone. Nobody can take that journey with you. So while you still breathe, remember to love and serve yourself sometimes. Be your own best friend.
And buy lots of skin care shit from Mary Kay.
Congratulations, tag team amateur commuter blabbermouths, you’re our Big Bosses of the Day. Go out and do something nice for YOU.
Boy there are a lot of deities out there! Depending on who you ask, there could be any number of omnipotent, impotent, omniscient, benevolent, malevolent, insecure, trickster, indifferent, egotistical, natural, supernatural beings hovering just outside your consciousness at any given time. Some of them are desperate for your praise and will stop at literally nothing short of tormenting your immortal soul for all eternity if you are found guilty of the crime of offering insufficient flattery. Some of them are eager to lead you into temptation. Some of them just want to watch you wank. And they TOTALLY CAN. It’s not erotic for them; they’re finding fault with you for doing it. They think less of you. But they don’t stop watching.
It’s all a matter of what you believe in, and what the eyes of your soul choose to see.
I don’t buy much in terms of a numerical object count, but when something speaks to me, to the point where I can feel the yearning for it resonating deep within my very soul, I dive right into that shit with aplomb and start injecting my surroundings with unmitigated STYLE. That is why there is currently a golden-tusked papier-mâché walrus head hanging over my kitchen, much to the dismay of my mother-in-law, who is also my landlord. She may not care for my flawless taste, but as long as I don’t damage the premises, her status of Lord of the Land doesn’t give her any say in my approach to decorating thank the lord, so there it hangs, Mister Delightful Ornamental Severed Walrus Head, keeping an eye on the general goings-on in my happy little domicile from his perch way above everything.
He is in the spot where more traditional decorators would likely hang a clock, and given that he is affixed to a round mount, people often instinctively glance at him expecting to be told what time it is, but all they get for their troubles is an eyeful of walrus shade.
The whole family was having dinner at my house, because it was Sunday, and that is what we do on Sundays, when my mother in law innocently asked if anyone had the time
Sifu: “I don’t know, let’s consult the walrus.”
My Mother In Law: “What walrus?”
Me: “The walrus. The only one that presides over this entire room that we’re all sitting in. We have a single walrus in here. What do you mean what walrus?”
My Mother In Law: “Are you talking about the rhinoceros?”
Me: “Rhinoceros? What are you trying to say?”
Mother in Law: “The one over the sink?”
Me: “Like I would have a rhino head in here.”
My Dad: “That’s clearly a walrus.”
Sifu: “How can you confuse those two animals?”
Mother in Law (indignant): “It looks like a rhinoceros to me!”
My Dad: “It’s a walrus.”
My Dad: “Because it’s on…the wall.”
Sifu: “Oh god.”
My Dad: “Get it?”
My Dad: “She gets it.”
Perception. It’s what separates us as spiritual beings from the primitive beasts and great, atheist lizards that crawled the earth sucking amoebas out of the primordial soup mere decades before the birth of Jesus’s mother, Mary Macaroon, in the handbasket of civilization. The dinosaurs lacked faith and look what happened to them. Their descendants’ likenesses are hanging on kitchen walls, failing to provide the time, getting confused with rhinos, whereas humans, who have GOD-DUH, are at the top of the food chain with our pig face wall hangings and our anus bracelets. We are number one and it is all due to divine intervention.
As some of you Idiots know, I am always intrigued by the changing trends of home décor. And although my lifestyle requirements lean more toward a clean, minimalist aesthetic, with very few things that can be thrown, broken, or otherwise cause a small humanoid with a semi-formed brain to wreck itself, in my heart of hearts, I long for a more lush personal environment, not unlike the beautifully cluttered domiciles of those trendsetting Hobbits you are always reading about in Architectural Digest.
Textiles all over the place, towering structures full of books, oh my god the coveted GALLERY WALL, fragile glass apothecary furnishings…all of these things are perfection to me IN THEORY, but I know myself, and in reality I could not live that way. I’d become consumed by the need to dust everything constantly, possessed by the urge to pare down, as I already am even in my already clutter-free quarters. My real life has undertones of Japan, but my fantasy self is in Morocco, or something like it. Lanterns. Fire hazards. Beautiful fire hazards and topple risks everywhere.
Because I strive for an overall reduction of belongings, but also have an appreciation for them, it is imperative that the possessions I DO choose be of the perfect type. William Morris’s famous saying, “Have nothing in your home that you do not believe to be beautiful or know to be useful” is too wide a range of options for me. My things must be both.
This is why I recently purchased a pair of earrings shaped like Steve Buscemi’s head, incidentally. I pondered this purchase for vast minutes before clicking “BUY”, because it is rare for something to move me with such a powerful force, and when it happens, the idea of someone else owning those fucking things was too much to bear. I only regret that my wedding was nine years ago, instead of next month. I am only partially joking.
But jewelry shaped like Steve Buscemi is not what I want to talk about today. Today I want to talk about my linen chest, which contains exactly four sets of sheets, all of which meet my criteria of useful and beautiful. They are perfect. I would not part with any of them willingly and dread the inevitable day that my dog voids her bowels into them, because there’s no getting past an incident like that when your washing machine belongs to the “Full Service Drop Off” Laundromat around the corner. You can’t just dump (ha) off a bag of feces caked bedding with those people and ever show your face again.
I am at my maximum capacity for sheets right now, so I can’t explain why I was browsing for new ones. Maybe to scratch some unscratchable itch. In any case, I found the bedding that makes me pray that Weinerdog13 eats an entire bag full of week-old Chinese food before settling down for a productively farty nap on my existing blankets, which would give me the only excuse I need to buy THESE:
BEHOLD, you unworthy human, with your pathetically unappreciative eyes, the greatest thing you can spread over a king sized bed second only to Ian Anderson circa the mid-1970s in the thing he’s wearing on the cover of Warchild. I give you: “ Queen King Size 100% Cotton 7-pieces 3d Two Tigers Walk in the Blue Water River Animal Prints Fitted Sheet Set with Rubber Around Duvet Cover Set/Bed Linens/Bed sheet Sets/bedclothes/bedding sets/bed sets/bed covers/Comforters Sets Bed in a Bag (King)”!!!!!
If that seems like a mouthful, it only goes to prove how right I was when I suggested that your capacity for appreciation of this mighty bed set is significantly below par! My god you suck!
Do you see this? It is virtually impossible to be anywhere in a room containing a bed made up with this bedding without feeling like you are about to be torn to bloody pieces by a pack of ravenous, rampaging tigers! And isn’t that half the point of going to bed? Imagine the dreams your stupid head might have on pillows enrobed in those fucking pillowcases. You CANNOT. You cannot imagine them, because your head would literally explode upon impact. Your pillow would be covered with the sloppy contents of your ruptured skull and your neckstump would twitch for a few seconds as your vital fluids leaked out of it, and only then would your headless corpse jump up and do a dance of glee in tribute to the power of the pillowcases that caused you to burst.
There are no reviews of this sheet set. Is it any wonder? The cleanup crews are still busy picking skull shards out of the ceiling of anyone who has ever purchased these sheets, but when they’re done, I imagine the five star ratings will start pouring in. “Excellent sheets, caused serious damage to infrastructure” they will say. “Blood everywhere. Dear god, someone help us.”
These sheets do contain a few caveats in the description, including this strange warning:
"4,On some item picture show,the comforter/duvet cover,flat sheet and pillow sham include decorative hem,actually,no including,that’s not same with the picture. “
So proceed at your own risk, but basically, buy these sheets at once.
And that’s all I have to say about the damn sheets today. Thank you for reading.
You may have noticed that I’ve been a little quiet lately. The reason, among a few others, is that a few weeks (months? who can remember) ago, the medication I was taking for my damn beetus started working just a little too well, and I found myself experiencing dramatic blood sugar crashes about an hour after going to bed.
If you’ve never had low blood sugar, I can now describe it for you as a combination of a panic attack and a heart attack. When I say “dramatic crashes” I mean numbers in the “call an ambulance” range, but since I am a hands-on type of person, I cured my problem in the short term with cookies. The long term was a bit trickier and involved some chemical juggling and adjustments to my medication that we’re still tweaking, and there are some side effects. The most pronounced side effect is CRIPPLING MUSCLE PAIN.
stock image lady loves pain!
Friends, I’ve been a fucking ache these past few weeks. I sleep on a heating pad, I cajole massages out of poor Sifu, and I eschew any pain medication because it makes me tired. And tired is something I cannot afford to be!
Thus, although I have been churning out post after post for this Idiot thing, I am too tired to format and post it at the end of a long day; hence, my little sabbatical. Which I’m not sure is over. But for now, this is my longwinded way of saying, you’ve been patient, so how about some head.
I give you Beatrice Marshall.
Eagle-eyed forehead connoisseur Greta the Great pointed this out to me recently and I just about lost my mind. Beatrice Marshall, as it turns out, is a well respected African news anchor. Well, what I don’t know about the African news could fill a thousand boring books called “Totally True Facts About the African News Media Volumes 1 - 1000”, but what I do know is that in Africa, a mighty forehead is looked to as a sign of authoritative honesty, trustworthiness, and integrity.
As it should be.
Let us herald my return to the forefront of bullshit posts like this one with a bullshit post that is so like this one that it is this one. Go forth and conquer the world, Beatrice. May your head be a beacon that shines my way through the rest of this week.
because what was meant, on the surface, to evoke fantasies of a creamy, berry-filled, satisfying romp through ice cream bliss, looked, to me, like the gore-spattered hand towel in Ed Gein’s powder room. I stated as much, and was validated to find out that I was not alone in this misconception. Others joined me in expressing similar concerns and we all opened up about our feelings and potentially got our names on the government’s list of sketchy people who can’t look at dessert without thinking murder. It was nice to feel like part of something, for a minute.
Doing this resulted in two major marketing-related revelations in my life.
1. Haagen Dazs amped up their targeted pitches to me, and my Facebook feed was soon jam-packed with ice cream themed horror mini-plots, including a brown flecked hand towel shape that was supposed to be caramel but called to mind certain bus station restrooms I have backed out of abruptly with increased resolve to “hold it” until I reached my destination, no matter how far, and
HOLD THE FUCKING PHONE. Has Greta stumbled onto something dangerously accurate here? Let’s dive deeper.
I have confessed in the past that a deep paranoia about the specifics of subliminal advertising once sparked within me an obsession so all-consuming that Wilson Bryan Key himself stood back and read undertones of sexual solicitations in the swirls of my hair.
Well this is a new era, friends. An era when we all get on our social media things and broadcast our insecurities, fears, and desires, even when we think we are holding back. We’re applying hashtags to everything, too, so sinister market research professionals don’t even have to sort through our potpourri of issues and problems. They have but to filter and extrapolate, and pitch to us accordingly.
None of this is news. Targeted marketing is a very real thing. That is why, only a few short weeks after photos of a baby began appearing in my Facebook profile, an unprecedented volume of ads for weight loss, incontinence, and vaginal reconstruction surgeons began showing up. But here is where things get a little more frightening.
Old-time subliminal advertising conspiracy theorists suggest that the low-tech versions of subliminal advertising - that which is and was found in magazines, newspapers, and television - played in particular to the subconscious death wish of the consumer, based on the commonplace knowledge that excessive intake of alcohol and cigarettes will eventually kill you, unless something else does it first.
How many times have I used the word “insulin”, or “beetus”, or “Brimley" in my online dealings? How difficult would it be for a computer program to extract these words based on their frequency and regularity, and determine that I am probably drawn to the forbidden allure of sweet, frosty, toe-claiming ice cream?
Technology has provided marketers with a wider array of specific things with which to kill the shit out of us. They know we secretly want to check out, and that’s why our feeds are littered with highly specified, utterly lethal, deeply psychological targeted electronic grim reapers. A bloody towel of ice cream for me. Maybe a big platter of fried onion rings and an artery-clogging cheeseburger for you. It’s not just booze and cigarettes anymore. It’s not a carpet bomb - it’s a surgical strike.
Think about that. Somewhere out there is a long distance Dr. Kevorkian working round the clock, just for you. Helping to aim you in a helpful direction if ever the burdens of modern life start to feel like a little too much. He is there, in the shadows, counting how often you complain, analyzing what you are threatened by, and flinging suggestive images into your eyeballs. If you don’t think you can withstand the assault you must either turn off your computer or SHOW NO WEAKNESS. Get on your outlet of choice and repeat this phrase: “EVERYTHING IS FINE. EVERYTHING IS FINE. EVERYTHING IS FINE.” Because you have a personal devil, and he knows you want to die, and if not, he knows you want to get laid. It’s one or the other. Death or sex.
On an unrelated note, I got this ad for outerwear and now I need some time alone. Leave me alone.
Yes, the search term. Many a blogger is as excited as they are terrified by the blurbs of psychosis that leak through our screens, direct from some horny, squirt-obsessed masturbator’s brain to our willing eyeballs, and how do we know about these search terms? I’m sure there are many ways, but I know mine through the use of Google Analytics.
And who is the face of Google Analytics? It’s either this toothy dweeb who looks like he owns about five Macbook Pros, or, if you’re lucky, it’s this lovely lady:
Look at that forehead. If you were to Google “world-class dome”, you’d get a picture of this fine lady.
No you wouldn’t. Don’t Google that.
Congratulations, Analytics Lady. You seem like the kind of woman who enjoys turning data insights into action, and today is your day. I searched in my heart for “best head”, and today, I’m feeling lucky, because here you are.