It's been awhile since we've done a MetroDad mailbag. For those of you unfamiliar with this aspect of the site, this is when I answer questions submitted by my readers. Some of the questions are related to parenting. Some of them are, um...not. As always, I'll start off by saying that I have no professional experience except for my 37 years on this planet and the brief 17 months that I have been a father. Any consequences of taking advice from me are at the reader's own risk.
Let's kick things off, shall we?
Dear MetroDad---my youngest nephew is graduating high school this spring and my sister (who is a single mom) wants me to sit him down and give him some worldly advice before he sets off for college. I'm not really the philosophical type. Any idea on what sort of advice I should give the kid?
I believe that philosophical advice is best left for philosophers. I think kids today really just want some common-sense rules to keep them out of trouble. There are a lot of mixed messages going on out there. You never know where wisdom is going to rear its pretty little head. Personally, the best advice I ever heard came from the highly-underrated cinema classic "Teen Wolf." Here are the timeless words of Coach Bobby Finstock...
"I have three rules which I live by: Never get less than 12 hours sleep, never play cards with a guy who has the first name as a city, and never go near a lady with a tattoo of a dagger on her hand. Now you stick with that, and everything else is cream cheese."
Pretty good advice, don't you think?
Alternately, you can follow the wisdom of my always verbose father who, upon dropping me off at college, gave me a couple hundred bucks and merely said, "Be careful" (translated from the original Korean, this brief two-word aphorism actually means, "Don't even THINK about doing anything to fuck this up. Don't get kicked out of school. Don't get in any bar fights. Don't get anyone pregnant. If you do any of those things, we will disown you in less time than it takes for me to fly out here and kick your ass! Have fun.")
MD, during a recent interview on "The View", Donald Trump said that he would probably date his daughter, Ivanka, if they weren't related. How disturbing is this? What's wrong with this guy? As the father of a teenage girl, I'm scared to let my daughter out of the house!
-Brian (Philadelphia, PA)
Brian...apparently, Donald has been making statements like this about his daughter for quite some time. In fact, I believe the last time he admired his daughter's nice figure, he even added that she's got "YUGE breasts," a "fifty billion dollar ass," and is "a gazillion times classier than that Martha Stewart lady!" What can you say about Donald? He says things for shock value in order to get attention. Most people don't take him for anything more than the blustering PR machine that he is.
But since actions speak louder than words, you know what really gets my boxers in a bunch? Billy Joel. Have you seen his new wife? She's 24 years old! He's 57! His daughter is 22! I know there's a precedent with rich guys marrying younger women but Billy Joel clearly violated the long-honored Younger Woman Age Limit Rule (Divide your age by two, then add seven.) Besides, seeing Billy Joel with his new wife also goes beyond the Raised Eyebrow Rule. Because of them, we're forced to start a new category, The Puke a Little in Your Mouth Rule. At least Trump's new wife is a LITTLE older than his kids!
(Going back to Trump...have you guys heard that Raj from "The Apprentice" is running for Congress? Next thing you know, a pro wrestler will be governor of Minnesota!)
Dear Metro---My family is constantly making fun of my pregnant body. The last time they came over, my uncle couldn't stop laughing when I stepped outside to the pool in my maternity bathing suit. Then, my MIL got her camera and said, "I was told to get blackmail pictures." At the time, I was 30 weeks pregnant and had only gained 19 pounds. I'm perfectly fine with my weight gain but my family is pissing me off. What can I do to get them off my back?
-Susan (Arlington, VA)
Fight fire with fire, Susan! No offense but you've got a family full of insensitive assholes. Sure, you could take the mature route and politely ask them to refrain from making any pregnancy jokes because they're hurting your feelings. But, personally, I think you're better off fucking with them. Next time your uncle says something, just burst out into tears and wail as loud as possible! Then, in front of your uncle, ask your husband to kick his ass. The two things that most men can't resist are a woman's tears and the thought that they may have offended another man's wife. If your uncle has any sense of shame, he'll feel like a total heel.
As for your MIL? Blackmail that bitch right back. Next time she's in the shower, pop open the bathroom door, take a few photos of her naked, smile lovingly, and say, "Sorry. I was told to get some blackmail pictures. See you on the internet!" Let's see who gets the last laugh!
MD, my wife is pregnant with our first child and I'm freaking out about money. All this baby crap is so darn expensive and my wife is going nuts with her daily trips to BuyBuyBaby. What can I do? Should I get a second job?
-Leo (Seattle, WA)
You're in luck, Leo! I can solve all your money problems right now. I have developed a fool-proof way of making money fast. Plus, you can work from the confines of your own home!
If you want to find out how to make over $1,000 just by asking people for money, please send me a check or money order in the amount of $1,000 (c/o Manhattan Porsche, NYC).
Act now and you'll receive a complimentary ColdHeat Soldering Tool. It's yours to keep ABSOLUTELY FREE! As seen on TV!
Hey, MD, did you watch the Oscars last week? Did you notice that Reese Witherspoon almost forgot to thank her husband Ryan Phillipe when she won the Best Actress award? How funny would it have been if she had forgotten to thank him? And if YOU won an Oscar? Who would you thank?
-Larissa (Los Angeles, CA)
Funny that you mentioned this. As several people have noted in their hate-mails to me, I'm a self-centered egomaniac. Therefore, as one might expect, I've already written all my speeches for when I (1) win an Oscar, (2) receive the Nobel Peace Prize, and (3) gain admittance to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
But, in all seriousness, BossLady and I have actually discussed my Oscar speech in great detail. We both decided that I should definitely break precedent and start off by thanking myself. Because without my undeniable talent, there's no way I would have won the award. Second, I would definitely thank BossLady because she has to put up with me and my insanity on a constant basis. But that's it! No praise to agents, managers, stylists, studio execs or personal assistants. MetroDad don't kiss no ass when he's paying out suckas 15% of his gross earnings.
As for Ryan Phillipe? All I can say is that it can't be easy when your wife is pulling in $29 million per movie and YOUR best known work is playing Billy Douglas on "One Life to Live." The sooner he comes to terms with being Best Supporting Spouse, the better off he'll be. Besides, when he gets really despondent, he can always jump in the Bentley and grab lunch at the Ivy with Rita Wilson, Kelly Preston, and Jada Pinkett. There are worse things than being a Hollywood wife (or so I'm told.)
MD---I'm not sure whether you can help me out with a problem we're having. In order to toilet train our 3-year-old son, I've been offering him a scoop of ice cream for every time he manages to "pee pee or poo poo in the potty." Unfortunately, my reward strategy seems to have backfired. The kid's blackmailing me now. Although he's fully trained, he still wants his ice cream and if I don't give it to him immediately, he just pulls down his pants, squats, and craps all over the carpet. I think I've created a monster. Help!
-Brad (New York, NY)
Dude, I'm speechless. This is far beyond the realm of my parenting experience. I have NO idea how to toilet train a child nor have I yet to experience infant blackmail. Anyone else want to take this one on? Anyone?
Metro, did you watch "24" last week? Can you believe they killed Edgar! And to make matters worse, they brought back annoying Kim? Are they fucking with us or what? Any thoughts on all of this? Are you still watching the show?
-Andrea (Tulsa, OK)
The death of Edgar really got to me. I fucking loved that guy. He wasn't good-looking. He had a lisp. He was a low-level civil servant. Poor dude. Somewhere up there in heaven, Edgar, there's a double-meat cheese steak with your name on it. And I know I'm not the only one who felt like this because, if you noticed, the producers gave Edgar the very rare silent clock at the end of the episode (which has only happened 4 other times.)
As for the show? I'm still loving it but, like many people have mentioned, I think they're going a little overboard with the cameos. Bill Simmons mentioned recently that it's absolutely ridiculous that we're halfway through the season and Sean Astin has yet to wear his Notre Dame jacket on the show. I totally concur.
However, all the absurd cameos have added an interesting twist to watching "24." In fact, my favorite new pastime while watching "24" is to yell out famous lines from other movies in which the the current collection of cameo co-stars have appeared.
Whenever Sean Astin appears, I find myself yelling, "God damn it! You're a Ruettiger! There's nothing in the world wrong with being a Ruettiger!" When I get tired of using that line, I sometimes just put on my quiet voice, turn to the BossLady and say, "Do you remember the Shire, Mr. Frodo?"
Whenever Peter "RoboCop" Weller appears, I yell, "Dead or alive, you're coming with me."
So you can only imagine how happy I was to see C. Thomas Howell on the show last week. When he left CTU at Jack's request, I immediately yelled out at the TV, "Stay gold, Pony Boy! Stay gold."
Try this game at home next time you're watching the show. It's pretty fucking fun. Meanwhile, I'll look forward to more new episodes. Who knows who they'll bring on next? Maybe Ralph Macchio? Aidan Quinn? Rick Springfield?
Meanwhile...I'll mith you Edgar Thiles.