Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Every day we have something to be thankful for. Today I am thankful for villains.
Sure they may not be the greatest people. They may not be the most kind and generous people. Some may not even be people at all. But where would we be with out them?
The fact of the matter is that you can't have a hero without a villain. And call me crazy but I think that Spider-Man would lose a bit of it's panache if all he did was fly around the city pressure washing sidewalks and helping people with their taxes. Nothing gets our little hearts fluttering like the classic strife between good and evil, and if there has to be some mass murdering and hospital bombing to get us there then hey.... ya know..... you can't have a burger without blowing a cow's head off.
Some situations that you can experience as a villain may include: being very wealthy, having a lot of promiscuous sex, doing a lot of drugs, living a life very similar to that of a rock star, having a device that causes knives or guns to spring out of your sleeve, somehow being able to put up more of a fight than 8 of your biggest and most dangerous goons, having a proclivity to laugh while escaping, having a soft spot for fine art and classical music, seemingly having very deep and passionate feelings for a woman but then maniacally hurling her off of a building/bridge/plane/blimp /cliff/giant eagle in order to hinder the heroes ability to achieve a set out task, etc.
Sometimes we will be watching a story of a ruthless villain unfolding in front of us and we can't help but like him or her. We know that they are doing horrible things, but we like them. The simple explanation is that no matter what, people are naturally driven to have a certain amount of respect and interest in people that are geniuses, or that are completely insane. We are drawn to what we do not understand. There is a certain amount of charm to a person that can outsmart anybody, even if they are using this ability for evil. All we can think is "I wish I could do that". The truth is that if we knew that we could rob banks and get away with it, we would all consider the life of an outlaw. The outlaw with a heart of gold, of course.
So let's all take a moment and say "Today I am thankful for villains". Unless you are, in fact, a superhero and this is making your blood boil in which case I would like to say to you "don't be bitter just because you spend too much time "training" and being pure to go out and get drunk and fondle something every once in a while. I know it looks like the villains are having all the fun, but you made your choice and now you have to live with it. What are you doing reading this anyway? Get out there and save somebody, pretty boy!"
Thanks for reading. Check back for more things to be thankful for in days to come.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Every day we have something to be thankful for. Today I am thankful for weddings.
Whether you are in the confines of a grandiose chapel, amongst the flowing blades of grass of a bucolic pasture, or in Vegas betwixt an Elvis impersonator and a bottle of Absinth, a wedding is always a beautiful celebration. So beautiful, in fact, that you may find yourself asking questions like "Can you feel the love tonight?"
Weddings are fantastic not only because it is a most important day for the bride and groom, but also because it's a great excuse to throw one hell of a party. Everyone is joyful because basically what you are doing is gathering all of your friends and family to celebrate one thing. Love. And when you are celebrating love you can't help but have an absolute blast and really appreciate what life has to offer you, and for that I would like to divvy out a portion of my upmost appreciation.
Some things that you can experience while attending a wedding may include: seeing grown men cry, seeing wedding singers disguise rap songs to sound like Herbie Hancock, realizing that dancing with a double martini in one hand and cake in the other is not the best idea, not realizing that the person you are making out with is related to you, explaining to your little sister that what she saw going on in the coat closet was merely 2 people vigorously looking for their frocks, watching an adorably quirky girl give a strange speech through the use of puppetry, etc.
Weddings are the ultimate shebang. It is the joining of 2 fools in love and it is a majestic occasion. Especially if you actually like the couple. If you don't, then all you can hope for is the possibility of an objection and an open bar. Either way you are still bound to have a pretty groovy time. The wedding gods tend to make sure of that.
So let's all take a moment and say "Today I am thankful for weddings". Unless the last wedding you attended was the wedding of your true love and your only part in it was passing out programs in which case you must say "I was going to yell out "I object", but I accidently said "I'm erect" and people have a hard time taking you seriously after an outburst like that."
Thanks for listening. Check back for more things to be thankful for in days to come.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Every day we have something to be thankful for. Today I am thankful for the future.
But how can you be thankful for something which does not yet exist? And how can you start a paragraph with the word "but"? The answer to both of these questions is simple... excessive heroin use. No not really, but I'm not obligated to answer all of your questions. I'm no philosopher. I don't rationalize. I'm just a young man with a cup of coffee and a procrastination problem, and I happen to be quite fascinated with the future.
Sure there are a few people who can predict next year's spring fashions, but to most of us the future is a blind journey into the unknown. That's what is so amazing about it. I mean really, what will the world be like? What will it look like? Maybe it will be a breezy, bubbly, crisp and clean haven of modern contempo architecture. Maybe it will be charmingly macabre and gothic with the city streets adorned by gargoyles and classic Romanesque structures, ghastly and erect into a gloomy sky. We may not know the future, but it sure is fun to think about what it may behold.
Some situations that you could possibly experience in the future may include: watching jet-pack racing on Espn, having a kitten teleported to you instantly, realizing that the Mayans were right, evading an army of T1000's, reading about The Wayans Brothers in your grandchild's history book, eating the exact same mexican food, operating everything through voice command, witnessing the return of slap-bracelets, etc.
The amazing thing about the future is that it is impossible to know what is to come. People attempt this all of the time. Look at all of the movies and books that are set in the future or that involve time travel. Occasionally there will be some technological predictions that are somewhat accurate, but other than that they usually get it so painfully wrong. Take, for instance, a movie from 20-30 years ago that's supposed to be based now or maybe within the next decade. It's just ridiculous. The clothing and music are usually just the styles from that era except totally exaggerated and made more absurd. Just goes to show, you never know. One thing I do know is that it is a marvelously captivating topic. It's fun to play with the idea of what it may be like, and people will always continue to take their shot at a forecast of the future.
So let's all take a moment and say "Today I am thankful for the future". Unless you have been to the future, returned safely and realized you were much happier here in which case you must say "Trust me, you don't want to know. What a headache that was. And seriously, how the hell do you use those 3 seashells!?!?!"
Thanks for listening. Check back for more things to be thankful for in days to come.
Every day we have something to be thankful for. Today I am thankful for Summer.
One thing is for sure, I am a huge fan of seasons. They all have their desirable and beneficial traits that give them each their own certain allure. However, you can't deny the fact that summertime is the most tantalizing season of them all. This is, perhaps, eminently based on the fact that during our most caged chapter of life as a growing human, summertime meant freedom, and freedom is something more sought after than nude photos of the Olsen twins.
People look for something in the Summer as if you use this season to reinvent yourself. There is an undeniable seductiveness that comes from this time of the year. Maybe it's because there is the hunger for vacation and the ultimate surrendering to plethoric indulgence. Maybe we should take a look at some WIll Smith lyrics from his song "Summertime". "Guys out hunting and girls doing likewise. Honking at the honey in front of you with the light eyes. She turn around to see what you beepin' at. It's like the summer's a natural aphrodisiac." It certainly is, Will. Thanks for putting it to a soft, subtle mix for us.
Some situations that you can experience during the Summer may include: Grilling some super awesome BBQ chicken, floating in a pool with an ice cold Corona so comfortably cocooned in a Cardinals koozie, designing highly animated sleds out of cardboard boxes and using them to slide down large pine straw covered hills, going to the jersey shore for some serious fist pumping, making chicken salad and having a picnic, making sangria and having a naked pool party, making caramel pound cake and having a stomach ache, getting so sunburnt that you can't even put clothes on so you just sit naked in a dark corner for 3 days with nothing but your own tears and a bottle of Jack Daniels, etc.
So have a drink, have a drive, go out and see what you can find, because summertime is about gathering experiences and memories. Don't be shy. Plan a mint julep party. Take an impromptu vacation to the mountains. Make it count! Who knows, you just might make history. If nothing else, at least you'll have a reason to make a new facebook album on Monday morning.
So let's all take a moment and say "Today I am thankful for Summer". Unless all Summer is to you is a miserable sweat-fest with a bunch of assholes running around bothering you and keeping you up at night with their laughter and loud music in which case you must say "Hmm, yea... the time of year when wasps and spiders come out, it's so hot you can't even breath, we have droughts that cause global panic, and a bunch of douche bags walk around with 40 inch biceps, tribal tattoos and tans faker than Michael Vick's public apology. Yea, real fun, guys."
Thanks for listening. Check back for more things to be thankful for in days to come.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
This is a follow up on yesterday's Daily Thanks. A very interesting and relevant thing happened to me on the day of the "Luck" writings and I felt compelled to share. The following is a true story that happened to me yesterday.
It was a beautiful, sunny day in Atlanta, Georgia. The kind that makes you want to put on a sundress and eat strawberries in a meadow. After taking care of a few things in the morning and completing my daily thanking, I decided to use this magnificent day to run some errands and enjoy the city air. First stop was the bank to deposit a check for $41.40. Time for a new Rolex. Second stop was Walgreens where I picked up some face lotion and a bag of cashews that were disappointingly salty and dry. It's a good thing that I had a boiling hot bottle of water melting in my back seat. Nothing like a little plastic poisoning to jump start the weekend. Then I was off to a number of stores in search for a reasonably priced, non pleated pair of tuxedo pants to wear at my sisters wedding. I found a pair at one establishment for $29.99, but the fabric was very unpleasant and scratchy with resemblance to a pair of pants that you would get with a cheap halloween costume. I decided that it was not a day for successful pant acquirement and moved on.
Now, on to my last errand. I had recently read an article in a magazine about a delicious springtime libation called the Grey Goose Monaco. It is an invitingly colored, citrusy drink consisting of Grey Goose Vodka, Grand Marnier, lemon, muddled red grape, and a little sugar served in a cocktail or martini glass with a garnish of grapes speared like olives. I decided to have a couple of friends over to my place on this evening where I would grill some BBQ chicken and serve this cocktail. It was the perfect day for this activity. With Grey Goose Vodka being the premier ingredient of this drink, I was off to pick up a bottle. Grey Goose is not cheap, running at about $45.00 a bottle so I was already feeling the sting of it on the way to the liquor store, but I wanted to do the drink right so I was not going to spring for a cheaper potable.
As I am driving, I see what could have been a wallet in the middle of the road. A road with relatively high activity. It was just a split second, but I was quite sure it was a wallet. I looked in my review mirror to the motorists behind me and none of them seemed to catch it which made me think it was maybe just a leaf or some sort of debris. After driving about a half mile down the road I decided to turn back. I slowly crept up on the area of the sighting with a car behind me who's captain was growing impatient. Sure enough, there lay a wallet smack dab in the middle of the road like an ill-fated squirrel. I put my car in park with a vehicle behind me and cars coming rapidly from the other direction as well. I grabbed the wallet quickly but then realized that some of it's innards had been strewn across the road. Like an over zealous child in an easter egg hunt, I scrambled to gather all of the cards while drivers began to honk and squawk at me like a flock of angry geese. Soon enough my mission was accomplished and I jumped back in my car.
I know what you are thinking. What is he up to? Is he going to use this discovery for his own financial benefit? The answer is no. I had already decided when I had turned my car around that this was to be nothing but an act of "good samaritanism". I found the drivers license which belonged to a man of about 50 years with a tongue twister of a last name. I called information and had to spell out the last name to the operator who then thanked me for my spelling and said "I never would've been able to find that". I give her the man's home address and get his home phone number. "Connect me" I say. After a few rings a woman answers the phone. "Hey is this the (crazy long name) residence?" "Yes this is Mrs. (crazy long name)" she replies. "Hi, you don't know me. My name is Jamie Olmstead and I just found your husband's wallet in the middle of the road." "Oh my goodness!" she gasps. There is another minute of exchange between myself and the woman before I say "well I see that you live right near me and I'm in my car right now. Would you like me to bring it to you?" "Oh that would be wonderful. God bless you." she says with deep genuineness.
I arrive to the residence which is a stylish, modern stone home with dark wood beams. The kind of house that you expect to see two superbly groomed golden retrievers come running out of with ear to ear grins. The woman comes out into the driveway towards my car as I get out. I give her the wallet and she proceeds to thank me again and again and tells me what a good person I am. I know I wasn't exactly saving the whales here or anything, but she was extremely appreciative and it felt good. We spoke for a moment and I suggested that she may want to go check the street again in case I hadn't found everything. I told her to have a good weekend and I headed back to my car. "Well wait a second" she screams out. I turn back towards her. She continues "Do you by any chance like Grey Goose Vodka?" I was a bit jarred by this statement seeing as I was on the way to purchase a bottle of Grey Goose upon the wallet sighting. I did not know exactly how to respond. "That's so crazy that you are asking me that right now" I pause. "Why do you ask?" She signals for me to follow her "Well, my husband works for Grey Goose and we just got sent a case and I would love to give you a bottle." I was stunned. I explain to her that when I found the wallet I was on the way to the liquor store to obtain a bottle of Grey Goose. I told her about the article about the drink and the grill out and everything. She was amazed. "It was meant to be!" she exclaims. I went into the house where I met her daughter and mother-in-law and then received my prize. We said our goodbyes, wished each other a wonderful weekend and I got back in my car and headed home.
I couldn't help but think not only how crazy and lucky this situation was, but also about the fact that on this morning I had decided to write about "Luck". I was quite astounded, and I was very happy that we had both been able to help each other. It was sort of a magical feeling, and I really liked it.