In a previous post, I spent a good 1500 words trying to explain that people who like cats and winter have it all wrong. This week, I’m spreading positivity.
I don’t have a lot of love in this cold heart of mine, but it seems that what little I have is spent on things that no one else cares about. I’m not going to use cheap stunts like showing emaciated doggies while Sarah MacLachlan whimpers over a piano. Not my steez, bro! I’ll just blog about it.
I can’t understand how people have completely ignored these most tremendous things.
MTV’s The State
At eleven years old, I wore a lot of backwards hats and looked alarmingly like Clarissa. As you can imagine, this took its toll on my social life.
Fear not! Your esteemed narrator found solace in The State, a sketch comedy show that you may never have heard of, and if you have, you probably thought it was idiotic and strange. Is it any wonder I love it so much I wanna dip my balls in it?
MTV’s The State featured a bunch of obscure weirdos like Ken Marino, Michael Showalter, Thomas Lennon, David Wain, Ben Garant, Kerry Kenny-Silver, and an adorable 22 year-old Michael Ian Black. Now, these weirdos write and star in 30% of the box office comedies you watch religiously.
The sketches never had a perspective like Chappelle’s Show. They weren’t topical or current like SNL. And they didn’t suck like MAD TV. The State paid the rent by being nonsensical and silly.
Like when the hosts at a dinner party serve freshly-caught Muppet. Or when Captain Monterey Jack passionately explains the perils of not tying your shoes. Or, the beloved “Louie, the guy who comes in and says his catch phrase over and over again.”
It may be as off-beat as the crowd at a Florence and the Machine concert, but absurdist humor is my favorite. And no matter how few people celebrate its premiership, The State is the zenith, the tippy top, the #1 stunna of absurdist humor.
I used to be one of the people who thought math stunk. I thought it was super boring and really hard. I acted like math was this rabid, maniacal beast with its teeth bared and heart set on destruction. It’s such an unfair reputation.
Math is awesome.
Math makes you think analytically. It requires logic and clearly-defined processes. But just when you think that’s so dry and prescriptive, it’s also mystical. Are you telling me that the Fibonacci sequence and Golden ratio aren’t mind-blowing? MATH EXISTS IN NATURE. How fucking cool is that?
And why does math exist in nature? Because math makes sense. Because things that make sense survive. Because bees build honeycombs in hexagonal shapes because it’s more efficient.
Math is common sense. Math is reason. Math is argumentation and precision.
It’s funny how many problems would be resolved if people just cared more about math. The line at Chipotle would move more quickly, there would never have been a housing bubble (and it definitely wouldn’t have burst), and this shit wouldn’t have happened.
Math isn’t the problem, dummies! It’s the solution.
Let’s avoid the annoying lesbian accusations and euphemisms. We can just assume your jokes were hilarious when I said “I prefer carpet.”
When prospective homeowners walk into a house and see carpet, they get all snooty and particular. They scrunch their noses, say the words “I don’t know,” and shrug disappointedly to describe how they feel about it.
I just don’t understand the irrational boner for hardwood flooring. The hard wood for hardwood, if you will. Yeah, it looks nice. But it is cold as a motherfucker. It gets scratched, dinged, and sticky. If you’re not Tom Cruise in Risky Business, hardwood offers very little substantive benefit.
It’s like this. When I was a freshman in college, I took plant biology to fulfill CORE requirements because it was easy. My first day of lab, I sat next to E.J. Henderson, who was about as enthusiastic about being there as he was for taking this picture.
But I was nineteen and thought it would be cool to have E.J. Henderson as my lab partner. It was a conversation piece for parties. “My lab partner E.J. and I,” I could say. “When E.J. and I were dissecting monocots,” I could boast. And everyone would be so impressed.
But here’s the real deal. E.J. Henderson was not a good lab partner. I don’t even think I’m sullying his good name. Dude had no interest in plant biology. He was leaving to go to the NFL. I just didn’t realize at the time that just because something is cool, it may not be the best choice.
When your dog wants to lounge around or when you have so many guests at your house that they can’t even fit on your couches, they sit on the carpet. No one is looking for a cozy spot on the hardwood. Why is that?
Because carpet is plush and cozy. Carpet wants you to walk barefoot — it never gets sticky or dewy or cold. It adds color and texture to a sterile room. It has looks and personality. And look, I’m no dirtbag, but carpet even lets you hide dust or crumbs until a more convenient time for vacuuming.
Carpet is just generally helpful and nice. Carpet is a much better lab partner.
u don get 2 rite lik this. Not in emails, not in Gchat, not on Facebook, not in text messages. YOU DO NOT GET TO WRITE LIKE THAT. There is no media in which that is acceptable. It’s impermissible. Those are barely words. That is not a sentence.
“Why am I so goddamn uptight about this?” you ask. Because I love grammar. I think it is so incredibly important. It’s the keystone to successful communication, which is one of the few things that actually distinguishes humans from the rest of the animal kingdom. And I have news for you. The way the AP Stylebook has dropped the Oxford comma and we all overlook the glaring misuse of apostrophes, we’ll be lucky if primates don’t surpass us before the next iPhone hits the market.
Ultimately, it comes down to this:
“Proper punctuation is both the sign and the cause of clear thinking. If it goes, the degree of intellectual impoverishment we face is unimaginable.” — Lynne Truss, Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
I’m not unreasonable. I don’t expect everyone to know the difference between less and fewer. I don’t stop the conversation to explain subject-verb agreement every time someone says, “Everyone keeps talking about their favorite football team.” (It’s his or her. The noun is singular. Yes, “everyone” is singular.) I don’t throw a flag when someone doesn’t know the right time to say “John and I” versus “John and me.”
Those are nuanced, complex applications. And while I’m definitely wincing in discomfort at every missed comma, I realize that’s unfair. I don’t expect perfection, I just can’t accept complete bastardization of English. That lazy approach to language makes it challenging to read, difficult to understand, and impossible to communicate.
Hell yeah I have a red pen. I brandish that thing with no regard for your fragile self-esteem because I’m on a quest to defend what is sacred. I take no prisoners. Grammar is not optional.
* PS – For all the readers out there, if you ever have something you’d like me to edit, it would be my pleasure. My sick, sick pleasure. I love editing.
And, to make a long story short (too late!), I like sweating. I think sweating is awesome. It validates any activity and makes me feel accomplished. Like I really did something.
And it’s not just Pharrell. Sweating is the jam.
C+C Music Factory gets hella serious about it. I’m gonna make you sweat till you bleed? That’s no joke, guys.
And I’m looking in your big brown eyes, Inner Circle.
Here’s the real deal. If you’re not already up and dancing to this sick playlist, sweating in your office, cubicle, or bedroom, then you and I are just different.