Sunday, November 25, 2012

House For Sale

Steve and Nancy were a young couple about to purchase their first home together. Excitedly they drove around a neighborhood looking for an address. They quickly found it, walked to the door and knocked. A nice looking, middle-aged gentleman named Bob, answered.

   STEVE: Hi. We’re the couple that called about the house for sale.
   BOB: Yes, hello. Come in. I’m Bob.

They all politely introduced themselves in the entry way.

   BOB: Let me just tell you where I stand, because I want to be up front. I own five rental properties in the area, and I’m going sell a few because I’m pretty financially leveraged right now. That said, you two have a great opportunity to get this house at a great price, but I'm firm on 260 because that's well below market value as is. But let me show you around and let you check everything out.
   NANCY: Sounds good.
   STEVE: Before we get the grand tour, can I just ask what the neighbors are like? I’m curious because being a law student with a part time job, peace and quiet are of the utmost importance.
   BOB: I doubt you’ll even notice the neighbors. In the six months my wife and I lived here I don’t think I heard them once. Really great neighborhood.

Bob began the tour and Steve and Nancy seemed to like everything they saw. They made notes of a few broken or unfinished things around the house. They came out of the master bathroom and Nancy commented on how much she liked the double sinks. They went down the hall a few paces and Steve asked about a door.

   BOB: Oh, this is interesting.

Bob opened the door and inside there is was a raging frat party in full swing. The room was full of college age guys and girls and they seemed to be fully engaged in enjoying the loud music, drinking, chugging, brawling, contests, and other such revelries. So much so, that none acknowledged, or even seemed to notice the three outsiders looking in on them from an adjacent hallway.

   BOB: This is the Frat Party.

Bob closed the door.

   STEVE/NANCY: The what?
   BOB: We were thinking about getting rid of it before we put the house up for sale but we ran out of time and just didn’t have the money. So if it affects the offer you make, I understand.
   NANCY: Well… who are they?
   BOB: Who are who? 

Nancy opened the door and motioned toward the party goers.

   NANCY: Who are they?
   BOB: I don’t understand.

Bob closed the door with a puzzled look on his face.

   STEVE: The people. All the people, who are they?
   BOB: (confused) It’s… the Frat Party.
   STEVE: Why is there a frat party going on in the house you’re selling?
   BOB: It’s part of the house.
   NANCY: What do you mean “It’s” part of the house.
   BOB: I mean it’s part of the house. The study, the cabinets, the garage, the game room, the frat party. It’s part of the house.
   STEVE: Where did they come from?
   BOB: Where did IT come from?
   STEVE: (frustrated) Okay. Where did IT come from?
   BOB: Where does any frat party come from?
   NANCY: I’m lost. Can you just tell us when they’re leaving? Are they going to be here long enough to do damage to the house?
   BOB: I don’t follow. When you say, “they”, who are you referring too?

Nancy pushed open the door in blatant frustration and flailed her arm around motioning to the people.

   NANCY: Them! Them! All of them! All those people in there!
   BOB: (closes the door and sighs) I guess I don’t follow because when I look at frat party I see it as an entity unto itself; a conscious, living, breathing organism whose collective soul is greater than a sum of its parts. (Bob opens the door and sticks his head in) It is a living thing just like you, or me, or the wind.

Bob, Steve, and Nancy together walk to another nearby room. Bob sits in a leather arm chair and Steve and Nancy sit on a couch across from him.

   BOB: Frat Party is not a random conglomeration of autonomous parts any more than you are a conglomeration of autonomous parts. You are you, working in perfect harmony toward the common goal of being.
   STEVE: Being?
   BOB: Yes, being. I could no more remove your head and still call you Steve as I could remove the head of Frat Party and still call it Frat Party.

The couple pondered a moment.

   NANCY: When we leave, what will happen to Frat Party?
   BOB: Nobody knows for sure. Frat Party has always been and always will be.
   STEVE: Can Frat Party be destroyed?
   BOB: Oh no. Like matter, Frat Party can only be manipulated into some other form of Frat Party.
   NANCY: Does Frat Party know me personally.
   BOB: Nancy, not only does Frat Party know you, but Frat Party loves you very, very much.
   STEVE: Let me see If I understand you. Frat Party has always been, and always will be. It is in our house and yet, it is omnipresent at all times. Does that sound right?
   BOB: (nods and smiles gently) You’re beginning to understand.
   NANCY: (more cheerful) This has been most helpful.
   BOB: Would you like to see the rest of the house now?

Steve and Nancy looked at each other and softly smiled. Without saying anything else they both realized that their level of understanding of all things and their very relationship to one another had just been deepened and strengthened.

   STEVE: (looking at Nancy) Yeah, I think we would.
   BOB: Good. (getting up and walking across the room) This is one of my favorite parts of the house.

Bob opened a door behind which was an enormous conference hall filled with middle-aged to elderly white men, most of which were dressed in business attire.  At the far end of the hall was a large stage. On the stage a gray haired man stood behind a podium with a microphone giving a very excited speech about the future. And behind the man was an enormous American flag that was set to waving with the aid of large electric fans.

   STEVE: What is it?
   BOB: This is Republican Convention.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Question 4

SCENARIO: You are the parent of three children who you love dearly and you are loved dearly by them. By all accounts the four of you enjoy a strong and healthy parent child relationship. And like all good parents their growth, development, security, and happiness are paramount in your life. But despite the fact that you feel that you love all three of your children equally, you have admitted to yourself and your spouse that you do not like all of them equally. You have an obvious favorite. We will call your favorite, Pat.

You also have a spouse that you love dearly and their happiness is also very important to you. You have been together so long that it seems as if you know each other as well as you know yourselves. You have nearly everything in common and no longer argue about the few things you do not. Except on the issue of pets. Your spouse loves pets, and grew up with them, and strongly feels that having a pet in the home is an integral part of the American family experience. You on the other hand detest pets. Needless to say you hate the hair, the feeding, the walking, the grooming, the poop, the pee, and the cost. But most of all you view them as an anchor that significantly limits your freedom to come and go as you please.

You have staved off pet ownership as long as you could but it is now impossible since your three children have sided with your spouse on this issue and you get the strong feeling that denying them any longer will cause an undesired rift in your marriage.

So, you concede. One week later you find yourself, along with three beaming children, and one elated spouse exiting your local pet shelter where you just adopted an adorable beagle that they have already named Jasper, after your spouses father who has recently passed away.

 As your family is approaching the car about to drive home you are endowed, from on high, with this certainty: You have to make a choice.

Possibility 1: You must line your three children up in front of you and make plain your feelings of favoritism. You will try to assure them that they are all loved equally and that you will continue to care for them equally, but the fact of the matter is you just like Pat more that the other two. You are certain this revelation will have lasting effects on your other two children.

Possibility 2: As your kids and spouse are climbing into the car and buckling their seat belts you must tie Jasper's leash to the rear bumper, jump into the drivers seat, and drag the dog to death. In their excitement your spouse and children will not realize Jasper was never in the car til you arrive home, they all jump out, and together witness Jasper's lifeless, bloody corpse still attached to the bumper. This experience will have a lasting effect on all three of your children and your spouse will be forever secretly suspicious of what you have labeled "a horrible accident" for which you are terribly sorry.

If you choose to do neither or you attempt to reveal your dilemma to any member of your family, you will all die in a wreck on the way home.

QUESTION: What do you do?

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Possible Pro-Wrestler Names

The Man Whisperer

Jimmy Soft Hands

Hans Christian Slamderson

Hedge Funder

The Nibbler

Flying Areola

The Comforter


The Bell-Hop

The Men-Strater

Tender Loins

Friday, November 2, 2012

First Lines of Books I May Someday Write

1) Steve had never been to Italy, but the moment he laid eyes on that salami in the meat section of his local Costco, he knew for the first time in his life exactly where he was supposed to be. And it wasn’t Costco.

2) “What’s your favorite flavor?” the girl with the ponytail asked the boy.
“Red.” Said the boy.
The girl laughed. “I said flavor. Red is a color.”
The boy looked up from the pebbles he was kicking nervously, and when their eyes met, something passed between them. And the girl with the ponytail knew this boy was special. This boy had autism.

3) It doesn’t matter what they tell you. You never get completely used to life in zero gravity. If anybody could attest to that fact, it was Jack Xander, the captain of the exploratory star ship, Deep Probe. Jack had been The Probe’s captain for over twenty-two years and he still fumbled about in the morning as he tried to locate his toothpaste in his shaving kit. Sometimes, in the mess hall, Jack’s utensils would float off in different directions and he’d just shake his head and say, “I’m gettin’ to old for this shit.” All the cadets would laugh and say, “Good ol’ Captain Xander.”
Then they’d march off to mate with the Lizard Queen.

4) Professor Hill, Ryan's philosophy teacher, paced thoughtfully in front of the class. His lips were pursed as he looked at the floor. It was obvious that Professor Hill was deep in thought, for he always chose his words very carefully. He finally spoke.
"If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it does it make a noise?" he asked.
Ryan raised his hand tentatively. "Yes?" he answered with a hint of doubt in his voice.
"That's correct" confirmed the Professor with a nod.
"Phew" Ryan sighed audibly.