Fuck you, snow.

If you can read this, please send help. I'm being held captive in a place where it SNOWS.

We’ve long ago established how much I detest winter, yes? Then you can imagine the joy that filled me near to bursting as I drove home from work in today’s blizzard.

It took me almost two-and-a-half hours to cover 13 miles. Most of that time was spent sitting at a dead stop … but the rare moments during which I was moving were made all the more lively by the exciting manner in which my tiny, little, 15-year-old, far-too-light, front-wheel-drive sled — er, car — spun its tires in place and made repeated overtures toward sliding off the roadway. (Granted, it would have had plenty of company.)

Fortunately, I grew up in Boston, where my friends and I spent every snowstorm of our teenage years perfecting our arctic stunt-driving skills … which is why, during today’s commute, I was able to narrowly maneuver my way out of some ugly moments that would have had most gamblers betting the farm on yours truly becoming one with a snowdrift.

As if the treacherous, unplowed roadways weren’t enough to deal with, this was one of those shitty, unyielding storms that makes everyone’s windshield wipers keep icing up. After reaching out the window several times to quickly bang the ice off the driver’s-side blade as it reached its apex (because I sure as shit wasn’t getting out of the car to do it), I employed my tried-and-true method of turning the heat all the way up with the fan maxed out on the “defrost” setting. Sure, it felt like I was sitting in a dry sauna for two hours and I was sweating my ass off by the time I got home … but every motherfucking snowflake that came within six inches of my windshield was vaporized before it could even think about clinging to my wiper blades. So there.

I'm not asking for much. I'll settle for a tastefully decorated beachside bungalow anywhere in the Caribbean.
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Posted in Winter | 11 Responses

44

44

This is what 44 looks like, people.
(Funky photo effect added to help diminish the glaringly obvious signs of my advanced age.)

On my 43rd birthday, I went to work like it was just another day. During my lunch break, I decided to really live it up … by going to my doctor’s office for my annual physical … because nothing says “Happy Birthday” quite like immunization shots and bloodletting, am I right?

They say that with age comes wisdom … and they must be right, because, one year after the aforementioned birthday blowout, I decided to wise the fuck up.

I called out sick today. *cough cough* See? I’m dyin’ over here. (Actually, “called out sick” is a misnomer. Thanks to the Internet, I didn’t have to call anybody; I simply emailed my boss to inform him that I was burning a sick day. No need for the whole fake-cough-on-the-phone performance. Thank you, Al Gore.)

Yes, I actually gave myself permission to really enjoy my birthday for a change. I stayed up late last night to watch a movie. Wonder Woman made me blueberry pancakes for breakfast. I took a long, hot shower (until all the hot water ran out). And, right now, instead of wasting away in a fluorescent-lit cubicle, I’m sitting at my dining room table, bright daylight streaming in through the windows as I write this blog post while listening to Van Halen. (Coincidentally, the song playing right now is titled “Beats Workin’.” And, yes, they’re goddamn right it does.)

As we all know by now, my BIG birthday celebration will be taking place in New York City two weeks from tonight, when Wonder Woman and I attend Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash (I still can’t believe we’re going!). Meanwhile, I’m having a great day, and I still have plenty to look forward to. Zan will be home soon, and I predict that he and I will be rocking some “Guitar Hero: Van Halen” in short order. (It’s kind of a birthday tradition.) After that, the family and I are off to dinner at my favorite Italian restaurant, where I’ll be ordering the chicken parmesan for the 9-bazillionth time, because it’s JUST. THAT. GOOD.

No complaining about my age this birthday. I’m cool with with 44. In fact, I’m planning on having a kick-ass year. For starters, I’m gearing up to get back in shape … and by “gearing up,” I mean “I bought a case of Sam Adams Light today instead of the usual heavy stuff.” An impressive start, as I’m sure you’ll agree. Also? Writing, writing and more writing. So you have that to look forward to.

Now, if you’ll pardon me, Zan’s home … and there’s a toy guitar calling my name. It’s time to ROCK OUT … in an extremely nerdy, geeky way.

Happy Birthday to me!

Peace out.

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Posted in My Birthday | 13 Responses

In which I place far too much importance on winning tickets to Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash

I don’t let myself get my hopes up about anything that isn’t a complete and utter lock — mostly because I’m an emotionally fragile pussy who strives to avoid disappointment — but I was unable to keep from getting my hopes up about attending Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash in New York City later this month.

In a rare move, I let myself be openly optimistic. Howard first announced plans for the January 31st event back in mid-November … and I immediately booked a non-refundable hotel room in midtown Manhattan. I figured, worst case scenario, Wonder Woman and I get to have some more fun in New York City.

“Are you still going to be able to have a good time that night if we don’t get tickets?” she asked.

It’s almost like she knows me.

“Of COURSE I am, honey,” I lied through my fucking teeth.

And I tried to convince myself that I believed that lie … but I didn’t try all that hard, because I still felt confident that we’d get tickets. After all, I have a pretty spectacular track record of making this sort of shit work out (like that private Van Halen concert, for example).

When I didn’t win tickets via the initial SiriusXM subscriber lottery, I set my sights on the “Howard Stern Look-a-Like” contest on Facebook, for which I dug up a 13-year-old photo of Wonder Woman and me at a Halloween party disguised as Robin Quivers and Howard Stern.

DS & WW as Robin Quivers and Howard Stern

I’m the one on the right.

And I was positive — POSITIVE! — that I was going to be one of the four winners … so much so that I actually dared to speak aloud about the likelihood of my victory. And in return for that foolish act of hubris, I was swiftly and decisively kicked in the metaphorical balls. Four winners were picked, and I came in fifth. FIFTH! No victory. No celebration dance. Just the knowledge that I had come THIS CLOSE to scoring the most hard-to-get ticket of all time. Too bad, so sad, fuck off, The End.

The thing is, I had truly believed I was going to get tickets … and my disappointment after losing ran much deeper than the simple fact that I wasn’t going to be at the show.

As those of you who have read my “About” page already know, Howard Stern has been a significant figure in my life. I began listening to “The Howard Stern Show” show more than 20 years ago while serving as a military police K-9 handler in the U.S. Army, and it is largely because of my exposure to his show that I made the massive shift from a career in law enforcement to a career in writing (by way of a stint in college radio).

I know that Howard Stern is a polarizing figure, and I’m not going to waste my digital breath trying to change the minds of any among you who might have a negative opinion of him. Suffice to say, I do not concur. But, whatever your opinion of him may be, the important takeaway here is that Howard Stern has been my primary creative and professional inspiration for the past two decades. In addition to making me laugh and generally entertaining the hell out of me, he has represented to me the possibility of becoming a self-made success by using your creative talents, and of achieving that success by sticking to your creative vision … even when doing so means risking failure.

With all of that in mind, you hopefully can understand how, without consciously intending to do so, I had let the prospect of winning tickets to Howard’s birthday bash become for me the sign I needed in order to believe that, despite the major, unexpected and completely depressing detour my career has taken over the past few years, I still have “it” … I still have that little bit of magic that has helped make possible things like all of my amazing experiences with Van Halen and my subsequent dream job as a music journalist. And if I still have “it,” then maybe I can get back to believing in the prospect of the rewarding and creative career I had always envisioned for myself. Maybe I can stop feeling like I’ve already missed my chance, and stop feeling like I’ve been sentenced to Death by Cubicle.

Maybe I can get back to believing in the dreams I had for my life.

And, yes, I am fully aware that it sounds completely fucking insane to place that much significance on winning a pair of tickets to a show … but no one’s ever accused me of being the poster child for sanity.

Listen, I wasn’t actually banking the rest of my life on whether or not I won tickets to Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash, OK? But a win would have provided a much-needed ray of hope.

Bottom line: The loss really threw me for a loop.

The first time I listened to Howard’s show after losing, it stung like a bitch to hear him hyping the party. I seriously considered tuning out until February so I could avoid suffering daily multiple twistings of the knife in my heart.

And then, much to my surprise, another Facebook contest was posted, the theme of which was to create a birthday card for Howard. Short on hope, long on desperation, and fearful of opening myself up to another gut-wrenching loss, I recycled my previous entry, turned it into a birthday card, and carpet-bombed the entire fucking Internet by hounding every last person I could think of to “Like” it.

Our birthday card for Howard Stern

Because nothing says “Happy Birthday” quite like a woman in blackface and
a dude making fun of your nose.
(For the uninitiated: The “Peace & Love” thing is an ongoing gag on the show.)

On Sunday afternoon, this showed up in my email:

bdaybash-win

Fuckin’ A. I’ve still got “it.”

Thank you all for tolerating my obnoxious campaign to win tickets … especially those of you who actually “Liked” and “Shared” the photo. I can assure you that no one was more annoyed, sickened and disgusted than I by my pathetic begging and kvetching.

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Posted in Howard Stern | 21 Responses

Please don’t make me stab you.

OK, LISTEN UP PEOPLE:

Remember when I asked you to “Like” that photo last week so I could go to Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash and you blew me off? Well, I lost by TWO “LIKE”s … and it’s ALL YOUR FUCKING FAULT! No, really, look:

jasonFB

And then I did the Ugly Cry.

BUT NOW YOU HAVE A CHANCE TO MAKE THINGS RIGHT!

There’s a NEW contest … and I need you to PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE click on the photo below, and then click “Like” on the photo itself. And then “Share” the photo with everyone you know and have THEM “Like” it! (Please note: I don’t need you to “Like” this post that I’ve written here; you have to click on the photo first, then “Like” the actual photo. And you have to be logged into Facebook for it to work. And you have to sacrifice a virgin chicken at high noon. OK, that last part isn’t true … but I know what I’m asking you to do is a pain in the ass, so I just wanted to point out that it could be worse.)

(NOTE: If you see a message above that says “This Facebook post is no longer available,” it just means that you’re not currently logged into Facebook. If you click HERE, a new window will open up where you can log into Facebook. Once you do so, the photo should appear in that same window so that you can “Like” it.)

Look, next week is my 44th birthday. Wanna do something nice for an old person? Then “Like” & “Share” the photo! It takes two seconds! I mean, seriously: You’d have to be a mean-spirited douche who hates puppies and children to NOT do this for me.

Yes, I’m fucking begging you. Do you want me to end up in a psych ward, all hopped up on lithium, drooling on myself while muttering “I almost won”? I didn’t think so. Therefore, “Like” & “Share.” The sooner I win tickets, the sooner I can stop humiliating myself with this pathetic begging and campaigning … and the sooner I can get back to writing something that’s actually entertaining. Basically, you’ll be helping YOU by doing this for ME, see? So help ME help YOU!

(Also, FYI: The “Peace & Love” thing is an ongoing joke on the Howard Stern Show, not some random, drug-induced hallucination I had. I don’t do drugs … but I’m going to start doing them if I lose this contest. Basically, if you choose not to help me win, you’ll be making my kids the children of a drug addict. I know you don’t want that on your conscience … so just “Like” the damn photo!)

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Posted in Embarrassing, Howard Stern | 7 Responses

UPDATED: If you’ve ever wondered what my wife and I would look like if we disguised ourselves as Robin Quivers and Howard Stern, this post is for you. And by “you” I mean “no one” … because none of you have ever wondered that.

OK, so here’s the deal: I’m a HUGE Howard Stern fan. And, yes, I know that some of you just went “Me too!” and that others of you just threw up in your mouths a little bit … so to the latter group, I say this: Pretend this post is about baby otters who do cute little human things with their paws, and that I’m a HUGE fan of baby otters who do cute little human things with their paws, and that the picture below is of my wife and me rescuing baby otters who are doing cute little human things with their paws, mkay?

I need you to please “Like” the photo below so that Wonder Woman and I can go party with Howard Stern save more baby otters who do cute little human things with their paws. (For the technologically challenged: I don’t need you to click the “Like” button at the end of this blog post; I need you to click the “Like” link directly beneath the photo of Wonder Woman and me dressed like Robin Quivers and Howard Stern saving those adorable baby otters who are doing cute little human things with their paws.) Also, if you’re feeling really magnanimous, you could “Share” the photo with your Facebook friends by — you guessed it — clicking the “Share” link beneath the photo.

The more “Like”s and “Share”s this photo gets by tomorrow (Friday) morning at 10 a.m. Eastern Time, the better the odds are of me winning tickets to Howard Stern’s Birthday Bash in New York City later this month … an experience I will then write about for you. So think of it like this: by “Like”-ing the photo below, you are investing in an upcoming blog post that is sure to delight you … or possibly sicken you. One of those. Maybe both. Either way, it sounds like a win-win to me.

(UPDATE: Apparently, when you click on the “Like” link above, it opens the photo in a new Facebook window, where you should then click the “Like” button. Also: If, instead of seeing the photo above, you see a message that says “This Facebook post is no longer available,” there are two things you need to know: 1.) Facebook is a filthy fucking liar, and 2.) you aren’t currently logged into Facebook. If you click HERE and log into Facebook, you should then be able to see the photo, and you can then click the “Like” button that appears with the photo. Because all of that isn’t too much of a pain in the ass, am I right? And after you do all of that, please swing by and clean my house. And change my oil. And cook dinner. Thanks.)

Yes, I know I’m begging you to “Like” a Facebook post … which, I admit, is both pathetic and embarrassing … but take another look at the photo above — or, hell, read any one of the painfully pathetic and embarrassing stories I’ve written on this blog over the past eight years — and then ask yourself if I’m a man who gives a fuck about seeming pathetic or embarrassing himself. Exactly.

Also, that reminds me: I launched this blog eight years ago yesterday. So, Happy Birthday, blog! And Happy New Year to you guys. Thanks for coming here and reading my stuff. I appreciate it.

And, just for the record (and because I know you need something to help wash from your brain the image of my wife and me dressed as Robin and Howard), here’s what we look like these days:

IMG_3758
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Posted in Embarrassing, Howard Stern | 11 Responses