Monday, November 14, 2011

Taking Comedy Seriously

Last night I was driving home with a few thoughts on my mind. Mostly about my future, the things I wanted, and how I was going to get them. Perhaps it was my love of video games growing up that instilled in me if you want something you just have to keep at it. Eventually you will beat the final boss at the end of the game and save the princess. Before all that though, you need to collect the silver bow and a shit ton of rupees. I think that is a fair assessment of the real world minus the bow. Actually, better bring the bow, it’s dangerous out there.

To me life has been about making all the moves to keep leveling up and getting further ahead. Unfortunately my battles were fought against a bottle while in college and it took some time to get my head out of my ass. So I am finally feeling pretty stable in this world of ours, there are still some serious wants in my life. Someday I do want to get married, have a kid or two, and teach them how important American history is and why they are better than other children. Until that time though, I am pursuing a few other things. The biggest one of course for me has been writing.

I have progressed a little bit on my novel in the past months, not a whole lot, but more than I had before. I have gotten a few more blog post’s than I have in a while. The big one on my head though is writing comedy. There’s nothing I love more than making someone laugh. I think a lot of people assume I don’t take anything serious because I turn everything in to a joke. I think it’s because much like Heath Ledger’s “Joker” I just want to put a smile on that face. I mean come on, “Why so serious”?

I guess I don’t really know how to go about it, websites like are my favorite thing on the net. I have read countless articles and I love the format, I just fear that what happens if it isn’t funny, it’s one of the reasons I have been too scared to try stand-up. I would like to take a stab at it, I guess I would post it on my regular blog, or give it a whirl via Facebook where it would reach more people.

I don’t know what kind of weak drivel I will churn out, I guess if it is bad it will be like really writing comedy and there may be some notes in the “comments” section. I guess I’d rather have someone read it and hate it then never read it all. Maybe… I might just cry myself to sleep, if so I will film it and upload it to YouTube. Either way it should be a gas. So if there is any advice for this project of mine, I would love to hear it. I am going to attempt to try and get something together in the next week or so. Wish me luck or feel free to punch me in the face next time you see me. (Only if you are a woman and a weak one at that)

Monday, October 24, 2011

Homeless Bound

Fear, it is one of the biggest motivators in the evolution of man kind. A fear of the dark pushed us to create fire, a fear of the beast that stalked us pushed in to creating weapons, and a fear of death created modern medicine. At least that is my perspective. Fear keeps us grounded for sure, but sometimes it also holds us back. A fear of public speaking to being terrified of jumping out of a plane, there is something that deep down inside scares the living shit out of us. Especially clowns, or as I recently discovered, tiny hats. Anyone who knows me well knows my greatest fear, being homeless.

Whenever I say that, most people are confused. “Jeff, you have a job, family, and friends who would never let you go homeless, that is ridiculous”. My response is that of “Fears are usually irrational, they don’t need to make sense, otherwise they would be an obstacle to cross, not a fear”. Then the discussion turns to how amazing my hair looks and a listing of why 80’s cartoons are superior to present day ones. End preface…

Yesterday on my way back to Marion from Indianapolis I was on 82nd street getting on to 69 North in Castleton. A nice area, one I actually lived in for quite some time. As I waited for the light to change I noticed a man standing with the sign that he was out of work and needed money, anything would help. Now this is a rather high traffic area for those who, for the better sake of the word are, “Panhandlers”. I then noticed the man had one leg and my heart sank a bit. Fuck. Heading in to the end of October this guy is maneuvering a very busy intersection on crutches looking for a helping hand. Here I am trying to tinker around enough with my iPhone so I can pretend I don’t notice him.

After the light turned I went on my way, thinking to myself what a piece of garbage I am. Not turning over five bucks to help my fellow man, a guy that could have been a veteran for all I know, a group that is very high on showing respect for. Then justify it by recalling every 20/20 and “To Catch a Predator” special about how people asking for money are usually scammers and drive nicer cars and have larger homes than most. You start to think then if you gave money to everyone who ever asked for it, the guys on the streets, the kids in front of Wal-Mart, and all sorts of other causes, how long it would be until you had to get in line in the soup kitchen as well because you have given everything you have away. Maybe it’s those thoughts that keep you from madness each time we have turned a blind eye to poverty.

This has always presented an major issue to me. When I was a kid and my parents took me to D.C. I kept giving every, pardon my language, “Bum” on the street money. When I was out I started asking my mom if she would give me more money to give to these people. She said “Jeff, you can’t give all of your money away to everyone, you’ll run out”. This was an impactful trip. Seeing streets littered with men who were trying to buy a meal and could not. Now I know there are many who probably would spend it on booze or drugs. Shit, if I was on the street like that Lord knows I would turn to substance abuse. It’s not like the 37 cents in your pocket is going to buy the guy a new suit and a job interview. Maybe it will get him close to a bottle of mad dog though, get him through the night and take him to a better place, at least for a little while.

I conflict with the young capitalist republican in me. I don’t care for our welfare system and those who abuse it. In my honest opinion those who don’t work, (I said don’t, not can’t) and demand government assistance, in my America you would have starved to death by now. Although an individual who lost it all, and is just trying to survive long enough to get it back together, they deserve a shot. Maybe they can’t get on some government plan for some reason and there is a mouth to feed at home and so far this is the only way. A part of me wanted to drive back last night, find this guy and give him all the cash I had in my wallet. Maybe find out his story. How he got there, what the plan was, if there were pieces to re-assemble.

I guess it just makes me feel less of a human being, knowing that to tune out another person; I just needed to fiddle with Pandora for a few seconds. That if tomorrow the world turned upside down and my last resort to feed myself that day was to swallow every milliliter of pride I had, break down, and beg for money; would someone show me compassion. The word, begs, is small, but weighs heavy. When is the last time you begged for anything? Humiliation, embarrassment, and even fear are all endured through begging. It is something rare and in a sense, a cheap word to describe such massive vulnerability.

I am not sure if I was looking for a moral in my own writing, or using the internet as my own confessional. Maybe just a digital reminder that we are all vulnerable and often rely on the kind and caring hands of a stranger now and again. Either way, it always helps if you are playing the guitar or saxophone while doing so… Damn I love street music.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Writing for Motivation

A few years ago I read a book; I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell. After reading it I wrote out my first actual attempt at writing something other than a screenplay for class or an essay. It was a story about spring break my senior year of high school, I shared it with only a few friends because at the time I was self-conscious (as I still am when it comes to my writing) and because the content is not something I would want the general public to see on the web. A short time after that, I put together a rarely updated blog due to an adventure at Subway and my encounter with an inbred sandwich artist.

Promising myself I would keep up with it and fashion myself into a legitimate writer I would post every couple of weeks, then career shifted, I moved, had less and less time to write and the difficulties I have had with the artist for the comic I published made me think, writing is not going to be your thing, focus on your job. I love what I do, and at the risk of sounding pretentious I am pretty damn good at it. Although my dream to get something real published has taken a back seat to falling in to the routine of the average American. There just isn’t enough time in the day. It’s time for me to say “fuck that”.

Watching re-runs of Tosh.0 is not something I need to make sure I fit in to the daily schedule. At the age of 28 I fear I have let so many precious seconds go by. In college a lot of us spent the afternoons playing Halo or sleeping for 10 hours a day (not counting naps). Are those the things we will remember? Possibly. Every year we look back to the good old days, mostly when you could eat two junior bacon cheeseburgers and not gain a pound refer to the glory of yesteryear. I don’t want to have one of the achievements in my life being that I watched everything that was on my DVR and was really really good at Call of Duty.

I guess what has pushed in writing something of a lacking content was to convince myself to start writing again, actual writing. Maybe this was the warm up I needed. I can hope if anyone reads this particular note, maybe they will ask “Hey, how’s the book coming along”. To avoid looking a fool, hopefully I will have been putting time into it and have gotten somewhere, that way I don’t have to respond with “Oh that, yeah well ya know, been busy”. By the end of the year, about 2-3 months I hope to have my first draft of my novel complete. Let’s see.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Parking and Recreation

So last weekend I was in my old neck of the woods, the sandy beaches of Broadripple. It’s not often I venture out to the bar scene there these days. Back when I was a resident I knew a good drink special for one of the bars every night of the week. Oh how we grow up so quickly. (Marion just lacks a good drink special variety, really keystone ligh?t B-dubs, how dare you) So these days a trip to the Ripp is always appreciated. Now a new restaurant had recently moved in to the plaza where everyone would park when going out, I guess at this time they also bought the property that the plaza parking lot is on. Now they charge five bucks to park there. Also, you can not leave your car overnight… (And here comes the rant)

Now I have been parking in that section for almost two or three years now. Granted that’s not a lot of time, but living in that area you get pretty acclimated to your customs. Park in lot, go to bar, drink in excess (not me, just saying generalities… right?) stumble out of bar, cab or barter for a way home. Pick car up next day. Deal with shame. Now the extra step of paying some ass clown five bucks is involved. Yes, it seems a bit silly a 27 year old adult is going to bitch about the price of five dollars, I guess it just “grinds my gears” that new guy comes in to the area and says “hey we are gonna start charging you guys to park, and nothing you can do about it, by the way come to our restaurant”.

I guess what really bothers me is the business planning on this. The Broadripple area essentially serves the Butler students and college graduates who have not grown up. Hence why I loved living there back then. Granted Butler students have a bit more money then most of us did in college. I doubt many of them are selling bodily fluids for beer money. At least out of necessity, a lot of artistic types go there. If I had to pay 5 bucks in college to park, then pay a cover amount as well for the bars, I would have been drinking elsewhere. Before you get in the door you are out 10 bucks, I remember only having 8 to my name and still venturing out for 15 cent beers. The average college student is going to waste half their fundage on parking and cover. This has a possibility to affect the entire area. The kids start going to a different area to drink, the bars start losing money, the whole system collapses. Maybe I am being a tad dramatic, but Blockbuster probably thought ordering DVD’s online wouldn’t catch on either.

What really gets me is you can not leave you car overnight. Really? You pay 5 bucks and you can’t leave your car either. Let me get this straight. You park your car, go to the bars for hours and the biggest binge drinking state of your life, crawl back to the parking lot, and drive on out of there so you don’t get towed. Let’s be honest for all good intentions a good PR guy could spin that to be, “We don’t encourage heavy drinking, we are hoping knowing patrons must remove their vehicles they won’t consume as much”. That’s like giving North Korea nukes so they don’t feel left out and throw rocks at us. (Does that analogy even make sense? Not really but anything pertaining to Kim Jong-il rarely does. Double Rainbow!) Really this just puts kids in a position that they will still get hammered and attempt to drive. Or “not get as drunk” the key phrase being “as drunk” still all fucked up, but not as bad as usual. Forcing people to drive leaving a bar and not really giving an option to take a cab anymore, these guys should get shut down tomorrow. It’s ridiculous. Maybe it was just this particular night, regardless, a pretty bad call.

In short I told myself I would attempt at writing a bit more this year, and I was feeling passionate about that this weekend. After a few Jack and Cokes unbelievably passionate. (Those parking attendants sure can take a punch!) I was just a bit outraged at a major change to an area I once called home. Maybe I am nostalgic, maybe I was upset they are putting lives endanger, maybe I’m just cheap. Either way I didn’t care for it. From now on I am just gonna drink in P.F. Chang’s when I go to Indy. (great mojitos)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Decade Under the Influence

It’s a bit later then I wanted to get started on this, but really it seems to be now or never. As we’ve emerged out of 2011 I think about the past year. I started my blog about 2 years ago and I do a very terrible job of keeping up on it. I hope to do better at it this year considering I have a little more free time on my hands now that life is rolling in the direction I want it to.

It’s actually so long I kind of forget what the whole point in starting this blog was. Maybe a place to bitch and moan or to tell some funny stories. Granted to assure I didn’t get arrested by the Columbian government, I never did publish the really funny ones. So I guess I am just sitting here contemplating how to start my first entry of 2011, I’ll let the words and the scotch flow.

New years always marks a time of change and remembrance, looking back on the year and trying to learn from our mistakes and alter our for the better. Typically the gym just starts to get overcrowded for the month and then the chubby kids file back out and go back to deep fried Twinkie’s. It’s at this point we really look at where we are and evaluate where we want to be. It was just about his time last year I started my job as marketing coordinator at Moorehead Communications. I had no idea what to expect, I didn’t know if I would be in the same position for the next three to four years. As of last week I have been promoted to marketing manager, and so far I love it. Two years ago when I started in a Verizon store I never thought I would be doing this, pretty happy I could sell the shit out of some cell phones.

This was also the year my comic book got published, Luther the Monster, if you haven’t purchased it yet, well you are just a terrible person and probably the joke of all your friends book discussion parties. It’s magical, do yourself a favor and buy a copy over at.

You don’t want to look foolish do you? Who’d have thought my first published works would be a comic book? Oh wait, anyone who remembers me from 7th grade.

I suppose a main part of my year has been relationships. I have loved and lost and look to love again. I make specific note of this since I have not written anything since my breakup back in September. I have learned a lot about myself and what I want in a relationship. I’ve grown a bit more confident in myself, and of course my friends for putting up with a whole lot of malarkey from my ridiculous ass. I’m thinking 2011 will be a solid year for all things involving the relationship world. I feel very Ted Mosby right now, also a little NPH because I am writing this on a computer while 8 bit music plays behind me in the background (Doogie Howser anyone).

Reading over this I really need to start writing again, because to be fair, this is some pretty piss poor work. Not many jokes, not many eighties references, not even a joke at a communist dictators expense, I promise to start working on these a lot more often. Hopefully at least my grammar will improve. In short this small entry is ending where is started going absolutely nowhere. I just am really wanting to get into the habit. Hopefully the next one won’t be garbage and maybe I’ll even include some photos of myself being smoldering. I feel the need to validate the fact I used to be a decent writer, so feel free to check out the classics at

Damn that was terrible….