I don't know about you folks but I'm kind of getting into that new NBC show "My Name is Earl." Maybe it's my longtime man-crush on Jason Lee. Maybe it's my fascination with redneck culture. Or maybe it's because of my preoccupation with the idea of karmic retribution. Whatever the reason, I'm pretty hooked on the show.
Anyway, for those of you unfamiliar with the "My Name is Earl," the premise is that the lead character Earl has taken one too many wrong turns on the highway of life. However, a twist of fate turns his life into a tailspin of life-renewing events. Earl wins a small lottery, and, after an epiphany (courtesy of Carson Daly) he is determined to transform his good fortune into a life-changing event as he sets out to right all the wrongs from his past.
In the spirit of the coming New Year and my ongoing quest to try and become a better human being, I thought it might be appropriate to list some of my transgressions against my fellow man and perhaps think of ways that I can atone for my past trespasses. After doing some thinking about it, herein lies my short list (a la Earl) of regrettable offenses...
- In my 10th grade math class, I used to spend the hour each day rolling up little balls of paper and strategically placing them on the head of the boy who sat in front of me. His hair was irresistible. It was one of those massive early 80's Jewfros and I couldn't help myself. By the end of class, he sometimes had 100 little balls of paper in his hair.
- Although I never faked my own death to break up with a girl, I once broke up with a girl by FedEx-ing a letter to her house. I even enclosed a return envelope so I could get my keys back. However, the girl was certifiably insane and had completely trashed my apartment partying with her friends the night before (while I was out of town.)
- Once, after a woman I know pissed me off, I exacted revenge by filling out over 100 subscription cards to various magazines in her name and checking the box that said "Bill Me Later." On the one hand, I do have a bit of remorse at having overreacted. But on the other hand, I wish I could have seen the lady's face when she started receiving issues of "Juggs," "Rough Rider," and "Cat Aficionado" in her mailbox.
- About 10 years ago when I was so broke I couldn't even afford the hole out of a donut, I used to wake up early on Sunday mornings to steal my neighbor's New York Times. Regrettably, this is one of the things that I feel guiltiest about. Talk about fucking up somebody's Sunday. What an asshole I was!
- I once smoked a joint in my apartment up on the 16th floor and, for kicks, shined a tiny laser pointer onto the neighborhood crazy guy down below on the street. He started freaking out, trying to brush the little red dot off himself. At one point, he even started running around in circles. People around him thought he was nuts. Every time someone came near him, he'd run over to them to ask whether they could see the dot too and then I'd turn the laser pointer off. In my state of bemusement, this actually kept me entertained for over an hour. Sorry, crazy dude!
- Back in college, I used to wake up early on football game days each Saturday and sell daily parking spaces for $15.00 to Saab-driving, polo-shirt-wearing SF Judds. The only problem? Those parking spaces weren't mine. They were my neighbors.
- Growing up, I used to tell MetroBro that he was adopted and that our family found him underneath the George Washington Bridge.
- In high school, there was a group of older guys who graduated several years above me that obnoxiously referred to themselves as the "Group of 6." One year, they were stupid enough to spray-paint "The 6!" on the driveway of our school. I couldn't stand these guys so, a year later, I convinced two friends of mine to go to school with me one night over winter break and spray-paint "The 6 Return!" all over several buildings. It was all cleaned up before classes resumed but rumor had it that the administration had the police pay "The 6" a little visit.
- Every year, there would be a school trip to Great Adventure/Six Flags. And every year, we'd always go to the Haunted House. And every time I went to the Haunted House and one of the costumed ghouls jumped out from behind a cage to try and scare me? I'd squirt them with a bottle of ketchup that I'd stolen from the concession stand. Now, I feel badly for those costumed ghouls. But back then? Oh man, you can only imagine how funny it was!
- I once bought a live pig on the internet and had it sent to a friend's house as a prank. Unfortunately, I entered the wrong address and it was sent to his mother's house. She wasn't too happy about it.
Damn! Now that I look at this list, I feel like I've got some serious atoning to do. After all, I generally do like to think I'm a kind-hearted and considerate guy. But shit, I never said I was a Boy Scout!
In fact, one of the greatest pleasures in marrying the BossLady and having the Peanut enter our lives is the fact that both of these events were absolutely life-alterting and absolutely made me a truly better person. That's not to say that I was necessarily a bad person in my earlier years but, as you might imagine, I did have a darker side. Crap, didn't we all?
Here at MetroDad, I like to think that you get unfiltered and unadulterated honesty. After all, if I were just interested in getting traffic, I'd write cute stories about the Peanut's poop all day long or post photos of her with the dog. But I like to think that we really are all good friends here so, going forward, these are a few of the things from my past that I think you should probably know about me. And if recent events are any indication, I can only imagine the evil e-mails I'll get ("I knew you were an asshole, MetroDad.") But if you're here for the long haul, I thought you might want to know more about the real me...warts and all. I'm not proud of the things I did but I'm not going to hide them from you. After all, I'm not trying to win a popularity contest here and if we were friends in the "real" world, I'd end up sharing these stories with you at some point during our friendship.
Anyway, since we're being all open with one another here, let's hear from you. Have you ever done something to someone that you regret and would like to atone for (if you could)? Are there things in your past that you'd like to take back? What's on your Earl list? C'mon, folks. Let's hear it. I can't be the only a-hole in Blogville, can I?
An inquiring mind wants to know.