Or as they like to say in Texas, Hola!
Please excuse my extended absence, friends. I've been in cowboy country for the past week visiting the in-laws. Not only did I have limited internet access but I was also extremely busy trying to confuse all the natives by moseying up to them at Wal-Mart and speaking in a fake Texas drawl, "Howdy, pardner! Y'all know where a cowboy can get his hands on some couscous around these here parts?"
Needless to say, there aren't too many 6' Asian-American men wearing madras shorts, slip-on sneakers, and Prada sunglasses in North Dallas these days. Camouflage and hunting vests seem to be le mode de rigeur this season.
On the plus side, I love going to Texas if only for the reason that every time I'm there, I feel like a manorexic. Ease up on those Triple Angus bacon cheeseburgers, Texas! I tell you this because I love you (and because apparently nobody else will.)
Anyway, not much time for a real post today but here are a few quick thoughts I have to share with you...
When it comes to parenting, I continue to surprise myself with how incredibly patient I am with the Peanut. In my pre-parenthood days, patience was not one of my strong suits. Not only do I rarely ever blow my stack with the Peanut but I also find that I spend a good deal of time just trying to reason with her.
Now, this is far from a foolproof system. As anyone with a young child knows, reasoning with a toddler can be an exercise in futility. So lately, when the Peanut and I are battling it out head-to-head, I've started resorting to threats. Eat your vegetables or no dessert! Go to bed right now or we'll never go swimming again! Put your toys away or Elmo gets two bullets to the head!
Sadly, my threats are proving to be completely empty. It seems that
the Peanut is a tough-ass negotiator who continues to call my bluff
every single time.
Sometimes, I feel like Jennifer Aniston telling Brad Pitt, "If you don't spend more time with me, I'm leaving you" and having no idea that Angelina Jolie was waiting in the wings.
SHUT YER KID UP FER CHRISSAKE!
For any of my fellow passengers traveling round-trip from NYC to Dallas over the past week who had to listen to the non-stop screaming and incessant wailing of a fussy toddler during the entire flight, I'd like to say one thing to all of you...
THAT WASN'T MY KID!!!
Boo yah! After almost three years of flying around the globe, the Peanut seems to be getting the hang of this flying thing. Heck, I didn't have to drug her up or anything! For both legs of the journey, the Peanut was the picture of perfection. Despite long waits on the runway, delayed departures, and surly flight attendants, the Peanut proved to be a varsity traveler.
I just jinxed myself, didn't I? Dammit!
HAIR TODAY, GONE TOMORROW!
As regular readers know, I like to joke around about the luxuriant head of hair that has been the envy of men and women around the world for my entire life. However, I've never mentioned that, when I was in my late 20's, I realized that my gravy days were numbered. The once-bustling downtown of my abundantly populated scalp was slowly becoming a wasteland of burned-out storefronts and boarded windows as the occupants moved to the outlying suburbs of my ears, nose, and neck. What the fuck?
I immediately went to see some of the top dermatologists in Manhattan. Since I hadn't lost enough hair, I wasn't a good candidate for all the new cutting-edge hair transplant procedures. So instead, my doctors put me on a combination of Rogaine and Propecia. Lo and behold, the hair cocktail worked and my luxuriant hair began regrowing like ragweed!
However, BossLady and I are contemplating L'Enfant Part Deux these days. We're thinking of "trying" in a month or so. As a prerequisite for Operation Impregnation, I've stopped taking my hair medicine. Now? I'm terrified that all my hair is going to start falling out and I'll be bald in a few months.
This is a sobering thought for any middle-aged man. For us, hair is all we've got. We don't wear makeup to make us look younger and we don't change our clothing style to enhance our appearance. Once the hair goes, that's it.
Sure, women will tell you that bald guys are sexy. But they also claim that size doesn't matter. Well, I can assure you, my friends, that there are very few supermodels out there looking for a bald guy with a tiny dick.
Unless, of course, he has coke and is named Barry Diller.
HAIRIER TALES OF SHOCK AND AWE
Facial hair and I tend to have a love-hate relationship. I generally look better without it but, every once in awhile when I'm traveling, I'll let my facial hair grow out. Last time I did this was a year ago and BossLady noticed a few gray whiskers emerging.
This past week, I grew it out again and you know what? I'd say more than half my facial hair was fully gray! What the fuck? This has completely messed me up. Now I have to grow out my pubes to see whether they've turned gray too!
Just kidding, people. I don't shave my pubes. Not because I'm not curious but because, as a general rule, I don't allow anything sharper than a cotton ball to come near my genitalia. I don't even read books naked because I'm terrified of a paper cut. No future vasectomies for me, thank you!
Too much information? Sorry. Let's move on.
MORE MIDDLE-AGED NONSENSE
While flipping through magazines at the airport, I came across the BillBoard Hot 100 chart and realized I didn't recognize half the names on it. Who the fuck is Sean Kingston (#1)? Who are the Plain White T's (#4)? What the heck is a Soulja Boy (#11)? Man, the only new music I'm looking forward to are the new albums being released by Bruce Springsteen and Kanye West. Am I getting old or does most new music just plain suck?
There was a time when I looked for advice and direction in the lyrics of my favorite rock songs but music now seems less about deep personal statements and more about simple entertainment. What does it say when bands like Fall Out Boy choose to first release their songs via a Verizon commercial?
Look, I get the fact that one generation's hardcore is the next generation's Muzak. And maybe I'm just a fuddy old man but dammit they just don't make music like they used to (of course, that's what my dad used to say about Perry Como!)
That being said, anyone got any good new music for me? Every time I've asked, you guys have turned me on to some great stuff. As my girl Pat Benatar used to say, "Fire away!"
BOOK GEEK 101: THE COMING FALL SEASON
I understand that, for many Americans, the greatest thing about the
coming fall season is the return of NFL football. Now, don't get me
wrong. I know my football as well as the next guy and I can talk shit about it better than most. You want to
discuss the intricacies of Cover 2, the zone blitz, the 3-3-5 Stack
Defense, or the Parcells 3-4 variation of the nickel package? I can
whip out a cocktail napkin and draw them all out for you.
However, honestly speaking, I'm actually much more excited about the fact that this Fall
heralds the arrival of new books by Junot Diaz, Denis Johnson, and
Phillip Roth. I've been waiting years for Messrs. Diaz and Johnson to
publish something new. Throw in the fact that this will be the final chapter of Roth's
Zuckerman trilogy and I'm just about as giddy as a little school girl. Seriously, I feel like a little kid the week before Christmas! Does anyone else besides me appreciate the sheer
awesomeness of all this?
Yeah, I didn't think so.
Anyway, because some of you have asked, here's what I'm reading these days:
The Yiddish Policemen's Union: Michael Chabon
Songbook: Nick Hornby
SALAD IS MURDER!
As some of you know, I've been an HMO's worst nightmare lately. Ever since I was hospitalized with chest pains, I've had my own personal team of world-class physicians from Mt. Sinal trying to figure out exactly what's wrong with me. I feel like I'm on a bad episode of House, MD.
Thankfully, after a million dollars worth of tests, the doctors have almost definitively ruled out anything cardiac-related. Right now, they're leaning towards a diagnosis of a rare virus picked up from one of my world-wide travels or an equally rare pancreatic disease. Of course, that's just this week's diagnosis. Next week, it could be something completely different.
One strange complication in their diagnosis is that I seem to have suddenly developed high levels of cholesterol and an off-the-charts level of triglycerides. I have a fairly healthy diet so the doctors are chalking this up to genetic predisposition and have prescribed statins for me to take on a regular basis.
As part of a personal experiment, I've also decided to modify my diet for the next few months. I'm eating a shitload of salad and I'm trying to get all my protein from only chicken and fish.
The only problem is that whenever I'm eating chicken and fish, I keep thinking about that hilarious quote from Dave Attell: "What's the best thing to eat? Chicken and fish. I'm thinking, why not combine the two: penguin. A penguin's a little bit of both, isn't he? He's a bird, yet he swims, he's a buffet of good health!"
Anyone know where I can get some penguin sushi? Hook a brother up!
GOOGLE ANALYTICS AND TODDLERS
Type the search phrase "how to handle a toddler" and Google will yield over 1.8 million matches.
Interestingly enough, "how to sell your toddler" yields 5.1 million matches while the phrase "oh lord just kill me now" has 53.4 million matches.
Just thought you'd find that interesting.
What's up with all of you? How did you spend your Labor Day weekend?