Thursday, October 31, 2013

Spam email of the week

Subject: From ms Juliet.

Hi Ms. Juliet.. That is cool how you have a period in your name like the band FUN.. Let's set the world on fire, we can grow brighter than the sun with this email. I feel inspired. Also I hate that song and I hate you.

Hi Let me inform yu my desire to establish in your country through your help.

I learned about Juliet in high school English but Juliet doesn't know high school English HA HA HA HA HA that is a joke I just thought of, top of the head. Just keepin' it real, not trying to offend anyone here. But seriously you seem like a moron. What's up?

Although we do not know, there is this amount $6.5 my father deposit in BANK before he was killed.

Let's break this beauty down.

Although we do not know,

Although we do not know WHAT?

Here are some things I do not know, in addition to why you used the phrase "Although we do not know":


That is the list.

there is this amount $6.5 my father deposit

Oh snap, pops was rolling with six fiddy? Let's withdraw that fundage and buy a Chipotle burrito.


Sounds like a cool bank! BANK BANK BANK. This six dollars and fifty cents is burning a hole in my pocket ... what to do? Why don't you deposit it in BANK? Great idea! Here you go, BANK. Now I'll just sit back and let the interest accumulate, and feel safe knowing my money is in da BANK. BANK! I drive CAR to BANK and I live in HOUSE. I wear SHIRT and PANTS to BANK when I go to BANK.

before he was killed.

Sorry about that.

And it seems to me
Juliet's father lived his life
like a candle in the wind
Never knowin'
Who to cling to
When he went to BANK
And I would have like to 've known him
But I was just a kid
When he made his BANK deposit
And then died in a way that hasn't yet been explained

if you can help me

I feel like I just did, with some closure.


That is the end of the email. ???????????????????????????????????????????????? THANK YOU FOR READING TODAY EVERYONE.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

For what the future holds, please look elsewhere

One of the themes of the Clint Eastwood-directed Hereafter, starring Matt Damon, is that those with genuine psychic ability can often be reluctant to share it because of how society generally perceives psychics.

As usual, I agree with Clint Eastwood—it can’t be easy to be a psychic. To reference another movie (my entire worldview is based on information I have gathered from movies) just look at how difficult things got for Whoopie Goldberg in Ghost. She almost got murdered by that guy! But she maintained her sense of humor throughout, plus her sense of being psychic. She’s the best, Whoopie Goldberg.

I mean, not only do psychics have to deal with the burden of communication with the supernatural, but they also have to deal with the jokes of commoners like myself: What do you mean you forgot your jacket? You’re a psychic! You should have known about this cold front. LOL. (Seriously though, you should have worn a jacket.)

So psychics have it tough, for sure. However, they don’t do themselves any favors sometimes. For example, when they call me to place a classified ad for their psychic business.

Years back, a psychic advertised in this paper. It was a simple word ad in classifieds, the name of the business and contact information. After it ran for one week, the husband of the psychic called me to complain about how nobody called his wife to have a palm reading, and maybe if we changed the font or whatever, the ad would stand out more.

He went on to explain that I should heed his request because he just had heart surgery. I was like, “I don’t really understand how that is relevant, and we only offer one font for line ads.” This made him very angry and he began yelling about how if business doesn’t improve, he won’t be able to pay his heart surgery bills, and the anger he was experiencing at that very moment was not helping his heart. Or his knee, because he also just had knee surgery.

Eventually I was forced to say, “Thank you for your passion and health updates, but I am pretty sure we are not going to run your ad anymore because the hassle of you being a jerkhead is not worth the $10 you tried to spend. Your card was declined.”

Apparently, psychic businesses had a long, storied history of being a pain in the butt and also not paying for ads. The sad part is people like this give legit psychics like Long Island Medium and Whoopie Goldberg a bad name. Anyway, I was unaware that because of this, we actually had a loose policy of not placing psychic ads in our papers. Now I knew, but I never had to impose that policy because I went years without getting a similar call.

By the time I did last week, my stance had softened, mainly because I had seen Hereafter. I shouldn’t be so hard on psychics—they don’t have it easy. (As a note: I do wholeheartedly believe in the legitimacy of psychic ability, so there.) So I heard her out.

She called many, many times. Can I tell her the price again? She only wanted the ad in the Peoria Times because she had a problem with a psychic in Glendale and didn’t want to escalate things by advertising “on her turf.” PSYCHIC BEEF. The ad was only like four lines, but she’d call back repeatedly to change wording that made absolutely no difference. Also, what was the price again?

I was just about to give up when she agreed to commit and give me her payment info. I waited on hold as she fumbled through various things, telling me she couldn’t find her credit card. I was like, “What do you mean you can’t find your credit card? You’re a psychic!” I didn’t actually say that.

Finally, she found it. The exorbitant amount of time spent on this 15-word ad would finally pay off.

The card was declined.

My point is that we are officially no longer placing psychic ads in our paper. Sorry, everyone who wants to know their future :( But that is our policy, from hereafter.

 "They ... they wouldn't let me place a classified ad."

Note: This column appears in the 10/31 issue of The Glendale Star and the 11/1 issue of the Peoria Times.

Facebook meme of the day














Friday, October 25, 2013

Great Moments in Rap History

I was a fan of Jeru the Damaja in the 90s, but hey, weren't we all? As Americans?

Anyhoo, in 1996, Jeru released "Wrath of the Math," a solid album thanks largely to the production of DJ Premier, although Jeru could hold his own lyrically. Kind of. He liked to (using this particular track as an example) use scientific terms like ferromagnetic, and drop names of random historical figures like Gwong Jan Lin, although I always questioned the broadness of his knowledge base on such subjects. (i.e.) It was more likely they simply made for more interesting verse than rhyming Rolex with Lexus, which doesn't even rhyme.

One track on the album was called "Whatever." It was about: whatever. Here is today's great moment in rap history:

Freak on the mic, but not sexual
Call me unalike cause my rhymes are never homo
Make you sad, like when Cher left Sonny Bono

Fire burn Giuliani, Pataki and Cuomo

Let's break it down.

Freak on the mic, but not sexual

"Regardless of how well I am rapping, I will not stick this microphone up my butt." - Jeru the Damaja

Call me unalike cause my rhymes are never homo

Okay, so Jeru wasn't the first and won't be the last rapper to drop a homophobic line. Following up his promise to not stick a microphone up his butt with the proclamation that his "raps are not gay" - whatever that means - probably falls somewhere near the bottom of the offensiveness totem pole, if only for sheer predictability. But what follows that is of great interest.

Make you sad, like when Cher left Sonny Bono

When the history books are written, I hope they pay special attention to the time Jeru the Damaja boasted of his raps not being gay, and then - literally in the very next line - referenced one of the greatest gay icons in American pop culture. Here are some observations:

How many of Jeru the Damaja's fans were genuinely sad when Cher left Sonny Bono, which happened in 1975? (And yes, I had to Google "what year did Cher leave Sonny." I am at work.) This is something I have legitimately pondered for the purposes of this blog post, and my conclusion is: zero people.

Also, why was this sad? If we believe Cher's assertion that Sonny (RIP) was not a great husband and a womanizer, then shouldn't we be happy for Cher and her newly liberated life? Or was it sad in the sense of lost idealism, like when a short male entertainer marries a tall female entertainer and everyone assumes they're going to make it work? I am confused.

Lost in all this - "Make you sad" ... is that boasting? Braggadocio? Like, yo, I am the saddest rapper out there, no one can match my sadness. I will make you seriously depressed and what not, with the sadness I induce. TANGENT: This is one of my biggest issues with rap, when it's impossible to accept the premise, and the ensuing metaphor (or simile) becomes just a metaphor for metaphor's sake. To wit: There is a Redman line off a track on the New Jersey Drive soundtrack from the mid 90s where he claims to "throw more balls than Dan Marino." And it's like okay, yeah, Dan Marino throws a lot of balls, because he is a quarterback. But how does that relate to you, Redman, throwing balls? What does "throw balls" mean? Is that slang? It is no slang I have ever heard. Do you throw testicles? That is gross, Redman. You are gross.

Fire Burn Giuliani, Pataki and Cuomo

Oh okay.

To recap:

"I am not gay.
"My raps are not gay.
"That was sad when Cher left Sonny.
"I hope the entire New York establishment dies in a fire."

This has been "Great Moments in Rap History."

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Spam email of the week

Subject: I am the one

Cool. I've been looking for you?

Hello there How are you doing?

I am doing great, thanks for asking! I can already tell you are "the one" by your friendly opening greeting. The prophetic scrolls of Babylon say of The One that we "shall recognize him by his kindness and random capitalization."

I enjoy most of your user profile.

I'm sorry ... most? What part of my user profile DON'T you like? Honestly I haven't updated that thing in years - there's a good chance I put something on there that I thought was funny and witty at the time, and am now embarrassed by. Actually I just checked and my Google+ (LOL) profile pic is me making a duck face while ironically wearing a Sugar Ray trucker hat, and one of my hobbies is "keeping it real." Yikes. I will edit my user profile to your liking, and then let's reassess our relationship.

Are you interested to see my own personal photos?

Ummm, sure, I guess? I hadn't really thought about seeing your personal photos, but yeah, okay. Please send me a photo where you are riding a roller coaster and the camera catches your reaction just as the coaster descends, ha, ha! I love those. You probably look so scared and vulnerable. Also one where you are naked except for snow boots and you're licking grape jelly off a bathroom floor.

E-mail me at and i'll respond back with my private photos.

I just realized my Blogger user profile pic is me from Little League, so maybe you are a pedophile?

Nah, I trust you, you seem cool and normal. The way you seamlessly transitioned from a backhanded and unfounded compliment to an invitation to view your pornography has put me at ease. Here goes:

Dear ponikaroyv,

It's me, from the email. Please send me your private (sexy) pics, thanks. Actually, hold on ... I'm getting another email ...

Subject: Greetings and Salutations!


Good day How are you currently doing?

I am doing great, currently. Ten minutes ago I was upset because no one was asking me to email them for sexy, private pics, but then I heard from "the one," a.k.a. ponikaroyv, a.k.a. "Naughty" at, so things are looking up for me.

I enjoy your page.

Thanks! I know it's kind of silly to write about things like spam emails and baseball cards and colon cleanses, but I'm glad to know people like you enjoy it. I have always loved writing, so your positive feedback gives me great confidence and inspires me to move forward.

Are you wanting to see my own most private pics?

Sure, why not? This must be my lucky day.

E-mail me at and i am going to respond back with my private pics.

PONIKAROYV! You sly devil ... I was just emailing you, LOL.

*Hat tip to James for the spam ... and the private pics.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Miracle in Sun City

We had somewhere to be 6 p.m. Saturday evening, so we couldn’t go to 5 p.m. Mass at our usual church. We would have to go to 4 o’clock Mass in the retirement community of Sun City.

Usually when this happens, one of us will go to church alone and the other will stay home with the girls. It’s difficult enough to bring the girls to our church—in fact, we don’t even venture into the actual church, but sit in the adjacent chapel and listen to Mass through the speakers. The only time we go inside is when my parents or in-laws are in town and they say things like, “The chapel? Pfft. C’mon, let’s go inside. The girls will be fine, trust us, we’ll watch them,” and by the first reading they realize this was a TERRIBLE decision.

But Sun City? Welp, Mass in Sun City is … considerably quieter. There are no babies crying, no bustling, no white noise than can otherwise mask the drone of whining and complaints and fighting that will inevitably emerge from our general vicinity. The parishioners who are ecstatic to see the young ones are negated by those who are visibly annoyed by our shushing and the fact we unknowingly sat in “their” pew.

On this occasion, we were venturing out as a family immediately afterwards, so we went to Mass together. Of course there was no way we were going inside, so my wife and I stood in the vestibule while the girls sat on the floor and colored. (Note: I never imagined I’d be one of those parents who allowed their kids to color in church instead of sitting quietly and listeni—LOL, I can’t even finish that thought without laughing.)

Every now and then, a parishioner would emerge through the doors to use the bathroom, and some of them, excited to see children, would approach the girls to say hi. Midway through the Mass, as the girls were head-down in their coloring books, a man emerged through the doors. An older gentleman, he walked slowly and with a cane. He had a long, white beard and was wearing fire engine red pants and suspenders.

My wife and I channeled our parenting ESP, made eye contact with each other, and immediately moved to shield our girls from seeing the man. Believe me this was not the first time we’ve seen someone in public, sensed one or both of the girls would have something to say, and immediately changed course (nine times out of 10 our instincts prove correct, and their offensive remarks fade into the distance as we hustle away).

Whew! That was a close one.

Just minutes later, I went inside by myself for Communion as the girls waited with their mom. Out of the corner of my eye as I stood on line, I saw the same man who, having just received Communion, was heading out the doors to the vestibule. Was he going home? My wife was by herself now … she won’t have a shield … OH NO!

I tried to receive Communion as fast as I could, which, in Sun City was: not fast. When I opened the door to the vestibule, my worst fears were immediately realized.

The girls were jumping up and down, and the second they saw me they screamed, “DADDY, DADDY WE SAW SANTA!”

I looked at my wife, who surprisingly was wearing a smile, albeit one of those defeatist smiles like, “What are you gonna do?” Also, the girls were holding something. Apparently, it was the man who approached our awestruck and speechless girls. He said, “I have something for you,” and handed them each his business card. I looked at the card. Yep, he WAS Santa. (Or, you could at least hire him to be Santa.)

Now the girls want to go to Sun City every week to see Santa. When we arrived at our friends’ house later that evening and told them the story, my buddy said it sounded it like “The Miracle in Sun City.”

Indeed it was. And on that note, happy Halloween.

Note: This column appears in the 10/24 issue of The Glendale Star and the 10/25 issue of the Peoria Times.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Spam email of the week


This is either spam or an actual message from one of our senior citizen subscribers.

   The Peoria Times Staff                        Dear friends,                                         It's a

great pleasure to contact you through these lines.

Still not sure.

I learnt about you through the Merriam-Webster Website a few days ago.

Oh yes, many people find us through the online dictionary website.

You: How do you spell learnt?

Merriam-Webster online: I don't know but maybe you'd like to subscribe to the Peoria Times community weekly newspaper? If you read newspapers you can leanrt how to spell good, and this is the only paper we know about thnx good luck :)

I had been trying to contact you on the Web several times and,today at last I could do it,

What was your difficulty in trying to contact us prior? I am assuming it was something on our end as you seem very adept at computer navigation and terminology and life in general. Nevertheless, what's up?

I would like to subscribe on your beautiful and honorable paper.

I won't argue that our newspaper is famously beautiful and honorable, but I am slightly confused by your request to subscribe on it. Are you saying you'd like to subscribe to our paper while also standing on it? That would be a cool, symbolic gesture of your commitment to our paper and I think we should schedule that pronto. Of course then we will place your subscription in our website and you can find it anytime you'd like by physically stepping into our website and looking around. That is how things work.

I am an experienced English Professor and Teacher from Venezuela,I am an America's lover to the core.

Your grasp of the English language is quite obvious, and there is no better evidence of your love of America than your interest in subscribing to random, community newspapers from around the country. Hot dogs, apple pie, baseball, Ford F-150s, and getting the Peoria Times delivered to your home no matter where you live. If that's not your idea of America, then you are just not an America's lover to the core, as they say.

I say everyday to myself:"I am deeply proud of the Wonderful language that The United States gave me".

That is such a powerful statement. Some people just don't appreciate English, the language that was birthed in the good ol' U. S. of A. When the pilgrims came here, they spoke gibberish, but then the head pilgrim was like, "We should speak English," and everybody was like, yeah, that's dope. So they learnt it, and now the terrorists try to destroy our language but they can't. THESE LINGUISTIC IDIOSYNCRASIES DON'T RUN. It's like, "press 2 for Spanish?" How about (hangs up phone, eats apple pie, logs on to Merriam-Webster online, subscribes to community newspaper from another state)?

I will appreciate your help and sooner reply about the matter in question.                                   

          Cordially your friend always,                    Antonio Campero.

Este mensaje ha sido enviado gracias al servicio BlackBerry de Movilnet

Oh, hey, Antonio - maybe you should teach your Blackberry to speak English. Kind of beginning to wonder whether you are really an America's lover to the core.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Facebook meme of the day

Juanita: /groggy/ Hello?


Juanita: Who is this?


Juanita: What's a ... what's wrong? Is everything okay?


Juanita: Why are you ... what? It's past midnight ... my kids have school in the morning.


Juanita: Honestly, I just share things like that sometimes. I haven't seen you since high school. This is really weird and I am going to defriend you tomorrow.


Juanita: /hangs up/

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Blinded by the light – raising rising sun awareness

After six-plus years, I feel pretty well acclimated to Arizona. I might as well have been born here. Blood is thinner, I shrug off encounters with scorpions, got a gun now … the whole deal. None of those things are true, but still. You see what I’m saying.

But there is one thing I have yet to adjust to, and that is the extreme brightness and location of the morning sun while driving. I realize that is a strange and specific thing to say, but it is a serious problem for me and I will explain.

It is not an issue in the winter when it is still dark on my way to work, or the summer when the sun reaches its peak height at 5 a.m. and remains there until 8 p.m. In the spring and fall, however, the morning sun rests at its most perilous point—over the mountains yet under my car’s sun visor.

What does this mean? It means I CANNOT SEE ANYTHING. Seeing is important while driving, according to AAA, yet no one here talks about the dangers of driving while blinded by the sun. People think it is a non-issue. “Stop being an East Coast hippie!” they say. “I once drove my pickup truck to the gun show while blindfolded to win a bet.” Well call me what you want—I am going to raise awareness.

Most of my drive to work is eastbound, so I pretty much can’t see the entire way. Sure, I wear my sunglasses, but sunglasses don’t help. In fact they almost act as a nuisance—another obstruction to my ability to visualize space and objects. This is me on my way to work every day the past few weeks:

(Head scrunched down to see below sun visor, forearm over eyes as a means to further block sun, driving 10 miles per hour with cars zooming past me left and right) “I CAN’T SEE!”

The problem is at its worst when I turn onto a street going directly eastbound. Is a child crossing the street to get to school? Is a homeless person crossing the street with a shopping cart full of garbage? Is this even a street? Did I die a while back and now I am driving into the blinding white lights of eternal rest? WHO KNOWS. I will just turn as slowly as possible to limit all potential damage.

I have been considering buying a pair of those humongous, thick, dark sunglasses that old people wear that take up their entire heads. What are those for, cataracts? I will get a prescription if that’s what it takes.

This is also a problem in the evenings when, of course, I return home westbound as the sun sets. The only difference being by this point, both the sun and myself are exhausted from a day’s work, so it’s not as bright, and I just drive undeterred by my inability to see what’s in front of me. Whatever.

But the morning, when I haven’t yet lost my will to survive? That’s a problem. Does anyone else have an issue with this? If so please email me so I can start my support group, Arizona Residents Making Everyday Drivable (ARMED). I don’t know what the solution is, but maybe we can get some government money or something.

Note: This column appears in the 10/17 issue of The Glendale Star and the 10/18 issue of the Peoria Times.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Facebook meme of the day


Spam email of the week

Subject: spiritual help

Some people visit their pastor. Some people sit in quiet reflection. Some people escape to their personal oasis of solitude. For my spiritual help, I just LOG ON Y'ALL. GMAIL.COM FOR ALL YOUR SPIRITUAL NEEDS IT'S FREE TELL A FRIEND.

Are you finding it difficult finding the right solutions to all your

Oh my gosh YES! It's like you are reading my mind and there's no way you could have known that. Yesterday, for example, I had two problems: 1) an inescapable, deep-seeded, fearful and sudden realization of my own mortality and 2) Twitter wasn't working. I tried to solve both of these problems by drinking a 12-pack of Schlitz at my desk at work but it only solved the Twitter problem. But then I posted drunk tweets and now I have more problems and also I got fired.

you don't need to hide your problem because if you do, you
will never find the solution to it.

That is literally the most profound thing I have ever read in my entire life, and I feel like it speaks to me personally because I only have one problem. I know I mentioned several problems earlier, but everything stems from my one main problem, and I have never told anyone about this problem before. But you're right - if I hide from this problem I will never find a solution to it. So ... here goes:

I'm too sexy for my shirt.


(The weight was my shirt, which was heavy.)

so i advice you visit me prophet
Akpabor today and get all your problem solved.

Prophet Akpabor, is the manner in which you speak what grammar will be like IN THE FUTURE? That was my first question. My second question is: Please solve all my problem.

financial problems,
marriage problem, court case, what ever your problem is,

Sexual problems, relationship, Windows 98, allergies, car problems ... wow, Prophet Akpabor, you really run the whole gamut of problem-solving! Maybe you should speak to Congress LOLLLZZZ.

The President continued, "I can't say it's been easy, these days during the shutdown. But we worked together to solve it, and for that I - this whole country, for that matter - has one man to thank. Prophet Akpabor, please stand up ... "

It was then a group including Donald Trump and Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Arizona stood up and collectively screamed, "I told you he was Muslim!"

get them
solved because god didn't send you to this world to suffer.

Prophet Akpabor, you speak the truth. Just like Jesus, when he said, "Blessed are those who suffer" I mean Vanilla Ice when he said, "If there was a problem, yo, I'll solve it." Between you and Vanilla Ice, I am G-2-G (good to go, but you knew that b/c you're a prophet, my bad for spelling it out).

you are bless

No, YOU are bless! Thanks for everything, PA, catch you on the flip.

"you don't need to hide your problem because if you do, you
will never find the solution to it." - Prophet Akpabor

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Spam email of the week

Subject: ASU OYOs



Person: I love the Arizona State University Sun Devils, but I ALSO love building block toys. This is very typical, and I represent a large number of people who love college and also children's toys. But why do these two passions have to be mutually exclusive? Arg!

Other person: Wait! I just got an email ...

OYO Sportstoys announces the launch of building block minifigures (LEGO compatible)

I mean, if you are making building block toys that are not LEGO compatible, that's just ... building block career suicide, no?

wearing the full uniform of the Arizona State Sun Devils.

This email came with an attached picture, and I will include it here and throughout this post so everyone knows that what I am talking about here is REAL, very real.



In addition to team uniforms, the minifigures have rotating forearms and bending knees to allow them to run, sit, squat, and grip and throw a football.

I enjoy how these are being marketed to college football fans not as collectibles, but as actual toys to play with. BENDING KNEES ALLOW THEM TO SIT. I would like to know more about the forearms ...

College football OYOs have one extended forearm and one bent forearm to allow for a variety of position-specific poses.

A 28-year-old ASU alum who still lives in an apartment in Tempe is putting his ASU OYO toy in a sexually explicit position RIGHT NOW.

                                  That's messed up, brah. I DON'T ROLL LIKE THAT.

"We're thrilled to add college football to our growing list of products," said Tom Skripps, president of OYO Sportstoys. "The demand for buildable sports product has been amazing and we're excited to tap into the passion of college football fans."

"We can't believe people buy this shit," said Tom Skripps, president of OYO Sportstoys, from the helicopter pad of his Scottsdale mansion. "The demand for buildable sports products in a fledgling national economy is understandably nonexistent, but we've luckily been able to tap into the idiocy/drunkenness of college football fans."

                    That's messed up, brah. I WILL CUT YOU WITH MY BENDABLE FOREARM.

OYO Sportstoys retail for an average price of $12.99

Capitalism: The ability to charge $13 for a one inch plastic toy, with enough money left over to send out mass marketing emails about it.


Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Flying high on the wings of parenting

For several years now, my wife and I have been the proud parents of the only child who refuses to nap at school. This would be fine if she could just sit still and find something to do quietly, but she instead proved to be a huge distraction to her classmates and the teachers trying to soothe them to sleep.

So, a while back it was decided the best solution for our oldest daughter was that, during naptime, she get transferred to the pre-kindergarten room, “5K.” This seemed to work—she has always taken well to older kids and the thrill of being amongst them tempered her behaviors.

For a while.

The gap between her and 5K has since narrowed—it is now merely the next grade up—and rather than acting as a humble guest in that class, it is now where she seems to get in the most trouble. As an alpha, type-A, she is now battling for control of 5K in her limited time there, and a few weeks ago she punched someone in that class. Punched someone. This is my life—my daughter is punching kids in a class she’s not even supposed to be in. GOOD TIMES.

If you can believe it, her role as the Steven Seagal of 5K is not even our No. 1 concern at the present moment. She is also learning things there. Not educational things. Bad things. Street things.

Last week I was driving the girls home and I asked them about their day. Our oldest daughter interrupted her sister to excitedly tell me the following:

“Dad, I’m going to get fairy beans in 5K and I’m going to turn into a fairy and fly away and you’ll never be able to get me.”

“Oh, okay,” I said. “Is that a story you heard from the teacher?”

“No, the teacher doesn’t know. But{child whose name I cannot reveal but whose parents we plan to be on the phone with at some point} is going to bring in the fairy beans and give them to me in secret, and them I’m going to fly away. She told me they’re going to make me fly, dad.”

“Wait, WHAT?”

When we arrived home and sat down for dinner, I told our daughter to tell her mom what she told me. She did, and my wife stared at me wide-eyed from across the table. Our youngest daughter chimed in with, “I want fairy beans!”

While it was obvious our youngest daughter would be the one most likely to get swindled into buying magic beans, it was even more concerning that our older daughter was the one most likely to experiment with fairy beans behind the back of authority.

My wife and I shared a state of semi-panic and unpreparedness. What kind of sick metaphor is this? We expected to have this conversation eventually, but at 4? ARE FAIRY BEANS A GATEWAY DRUG?

We had to explain to her that fairy beans won’t make her fly and also don’t exist, and that she should never accept anything from anyone in school ever, and especially without her teachers knowing. My wife then asked me if I was going to call the school.

“Maybe we’re overreacting,” I said. “I can’t see myself calling them to talk about fairy beans.”

“You’re right,” my wife said. “Let’s wait until it’s PCP.”

So I’ll probably be calling the school soon. And continuing to have conversations with our daughter, all the while hoping she never asks me if I tried fairy beans in college.

 I Googled "fairy beans" and this is what I got. Probably like, fairy bean brownies or something. Sick bastards.

Note: This column appears in the 10/10 issue of The Glendale Star and the 10/11 issue of the Peoria Times.

Facebook meme of the day


Thursday, October 03, 2013

Spam email of the week

Subject: 106646109316766951201????????

Good question. Good freaking question. I'd like to find out myself. Let me just check to see who this important email is from so I know I am dealing with something legit and not something dumb and stupid and dumb ...

From: 106646109316766951201 []

Hold up, lemme just add you to my contacts, 106646109316766951201.

First name: 106646109316766951201
Last name: 234wefewf, probs
Category: Business contact Associate Friend Best friend

Dear Sir or Madam,

Call me sir, 106646109316766951201, on account of my penis.

We specialize in electronic devices field with full experience and we have 100 % confidence in our technology and quality.

Yo on the reals? That is dope and you have inspired me to have confidence in your products as well. I want to order all of your devices - the whole field - but tell me, what is your hot seller?

Now our hot seller is pedometer.

Pedometer is sweeping the nation in popularity. I just saw a "20/20" feature on pedometer called "Pedometer: Sweeping the nation in popularity" and their conclusion was: yes, it IS sweeping the nation in popularity. There is literally no other thing a person can use to track how far they have run or walked or elliptical'd. There is no phone or phone app or iPhone app or any app or any other app thing that can do this easily by installing the app for free, which is why pedometer is so important and expensive. As someone who runs, one thing I am always looking for is another device I can attach to my person while I am running because that is a nice thing that is pleasant and comfortable and necessary. Is pedometer a big guy?

Pedometer is a little guy with the blueooth function can fit for ipone and ipad.

Cool, what is an ipone and also blueooth? Ha, ha j/k I know you just can't spell, which is why I have so much confidence in your products. Who has time to type all the letters that make up words when you're busy advancing technology? Pfft.

Once connected with the phone by bluetooth,it can help you record the amount of exercise, calorie consumpion and master the time when you are exercising.Let you have a regular exercise and healthy body.

Pedometer testimonial, Trish from Madison, WI: Pedometer is great! I never had regular exercise before pedometer because nothing would tell me how far I didn't jog, so I just wouldn't exercise at all because I am a stupid idiot jerk. But now I just connect pedometer to the Bluetooth on my iPhone, and then bring all that crap with me when I run because that is the easiest way to do things. No more fumbling around with clumsy, built-in apps that do everything for free. Thanks, pedometer! And my husband thanks you, too! (Because of the sex I give him now. Because of my healthy pedometer bod.)

Besides,it also supports off-line record function and reread the historical data records.

Maybe you weren't sold on pedometer? Well guess what, a$$hole - pedometer supports off-line record function and you can reread historical data or whatever, so BUY IT.

"Gather 'round, grandchildren. (pulls out pedometer) Did I ever tell you kids about the time I ran six miles in under an hour and burned 986 calories? It was May 25th, 2013, and I wasn't even in a wifi zone. If I remember it was a beautiful day, and I started out by going south on ... (lowers glasses to operate pedometer) ... darn it ... Mike! How the hell do you access past workouts on this thing?" - my dad, who bought a pedometer after getting this email

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

An open letter to cyclists

I’m not out to offend here, and I want to make it abundantly clear—I don’t hate people who ride bicycles. Some of my best friends ride bicycles. My uncle rides a bicycle. Shoot, I ride a bicycle sometimes. Granted, it’s a mountain bike and I ride it about five times a year to take my girls to the park. I have to attach a separate, covered bike to the back of it that the girls sit in so I can physically drag them to the park, and they fight the whole way there and demand that I go faster or slower depending on their mood. DAD FUN. Most importantly, however, I ride my bike on the sidewalk.*

Listen, I get it. You enjoy riding your bike for exercise, and where else are you going to ride except on the road? You can’t ride it around a high school track because that would be weird and you would get dizzy. And there is no such thing as a stationary bike or a spinning class at the local gym. Okay … that was rude. I didn’t mean that. Believe me I understand your lust for the open road. Possibly you moved to the Valley for the sole purpose of blowing the dust off your Turbo Bike 6000GTS 25-speed Hydro Max 2-Wheeler, draping yourself in spandex, strapping on your aerodynamic helmet, and doing your best Lance Armstrong Greg LeMond impression while experiencing desert mountain views. I’m not gonna hate on that.

But we need to have a conversation here.

There is a lot of open road (for now) where we live, and thus a lot of cyclists. It may technically be true that we share the road since there is an assigned bike lane; however, that lane is quite wide relative to the width of your bicycle, and many of you cyclists insist on riding your bike on the white line that separates the right car lane from the bike lane. May I ask: WHY? Why do you do this? WHY?

When you get together with your biking friends for a Sunday morning ride, why do think it’s okay to ride side-by-side? The bike lane is meant for one bike. Do you realize I am in a car and that car > bike in both physics and ownership of the road? FORM A SINGLE FILE LINE.

Again, I am okay with sharing the road. But I believe that roads, generally speaking, were paved with taxpayer money for the purpose of commerce, not so that you could get your calorie burn on. You should, I believe, show some humility on the road. While it is no doubt hard work, cycling is a leisure activity, and me trying to get home in my car with two screaming kids after spending an hour at Target is NOT a leisure activity, and you should get out of my way.

While I harbor no animosity toward cyclists, regardless of everything mentioned here, I cannot say the same for my wife. You will never see her as annoyed as when a cyclist is affecting her ability to drive, and there is one particular local cyclist who inspires her rage like no other.

He is always shirtless, no helmet, and can often be seen riding on the road that leads into our development. He also has eyes in the back of his head, and if he senses you approaching in the right lane in your motor vehicle, he will angrily wave his hand in a motion that demands you get in the left lane. If you don’t—and we don’t—you will see him shake his fist at you (and sometimes worse) in your rear view mirror. I can tell the second my wife gets home if she’s had an encounter with shirtless cyclist guy because she will scream, "I SAW HIM!" as she walks through the door and also smoke will be coming out of her ears.

I’m not saying all cyclists are like shirtless cyclist guy—again, my uncle is a cyclist, and he is nice—but I think it’s important we reach a common ground here. That common ground is the street, and it’s for cars. Thank you.

*My mom told me, before publishing this, to "check the law" because in New Jersey it's illegal to ride your bike on the sidewalk. I never checked the law, but if that is indeed the case in Arizona as well, GET AT ME, SHERIFF JOE.

Note: This column appears in the 10/3 issue of The Glendale Star and the 10/4 issue of the Peoria Times.