Strove to find a way to punch people in the face by using the Internet.


More Historical Indignities
Age 8: I develop the bad habit of picking my nose and absent-mindedly flicking the boogers away while lying on my bed and reading. I more or less unconsciously continue this grotesque behavior until the day my dad pulls me into my room and angrily demands an explanation as to why there are six or seven huge, bloody, dried snot-wads stuck to the wall. The room seems to spin and recede and I am dimly aware, somewhere at the back of my mind, that making up a lie to cover this is beyond even my awesome powers. “Maybe I’m doing it in my sleep?” is the best I can come up with. My dad stares at me in disgust for a few moments and then walks away. Later, upon noticing that the booger wall is a good 12 feet from my bed, I’m quietly impressed that I managed that kind of range.

Age 9: Digging through my mom’s old albums, I discover Freak Out!, the first record by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention. I become enamored of side four, titled “The Return of the Son of Monster Magnet,” which features one 20-minute song consisting of little more than drumming and yelling. I bring it to school on “music day,” exciting the other members of my class, who see the words “freak out” and assume it’s the then-popular disco-pop hit of the same title by the band Chic. We make it through about six minutes before the teacher takes it off. Everyone just stares at me.

Age 10: I discover that I can very proficiently burp and talk at the same time. One day in science class, my teacher (the hated Mrs. Cruickshank, who a year later narked to the cops on me and my buddy Matt for making and detonating bombs in the woods next to her house) asks me for my folder. I burp out the words, “I left it at home,” and am sent to the office for the first time in my life. On the verge of tears, I wait to see the school principal and receive my inevitable paddling. He calls me in, and I sit quivering with fear across from him at his desk while he reads the slip detailing my transgression against society. He eventually looks up and starts to stare at me with a blank expression on his face. We sit there for a long time. He hands me back the slip and goes back to work, ignoring me. After a few minutes, I go back to class. He never says a word.

Age 16: Go to see D.C. hardcore band Scream (with Dave Grohl on drums!) at one of the local city-run recreation centers. Visiting the bathroom, I walk in on a conversation between a relatively friendly local skinhead and some out-of-town baldies. I overhear one of ‘em complaining about unwanted participants in “the scene” and ask, “What, you guys have to put up with a lot of rednecks and Nazis?” It suddenly becomes very quiet. Four large, bald and tattooed men turn to face me. I notice the Confederate flags and swastikas.

Age 17: Some magical combination of booze and luck lands me in bed with two gorgeous young women; my exceptionally tall, busty, blonde girlfriend and the petite, athletic redhead hosting the party happening outside her parents’ bedroom door. Actually, I’m in bed with three women, but one of ‘em is making out with my buddy Jon way over on the other side of the mattress, and the two of them split when they see things are kinda starting to heat up with us. I can’t get my girlfriend to fool around with the other girl, but have no complaints: I’m drunk, horny and on my way to experiencing my first-ever two-girl, one-me threesome, an event that’s obviously pretty much the Holy Grail for every idiot 17-year-old creep (not to mention every idiot 34-year-old creep). Things start to progress farther than I had ever dreamed possible (outside of various masturbatory fantasies anyway), and when the time is right I climb over and kneel between the tender legs of my gorgeous girlfriend as the redhead strokes my hair and looks on, mouth open and wet with expectation… And my girlfriend requests that I use a condom. So I stand up, rip the sheets off the bed to wrap myself and venture out into the party in search of a rubber while the girls giggle and await my return. I’m drunker’n Cooter Brown, ass hanging out of my makeshift toga and blind without my glasses, staggering around this wretched party and bumping into groups of disgusted jocks while desperately bellowing for a birth control. Someone takes pity on me and hands me a rubber, so I make haste back to the bedroom. Once again kneeling between those magical, silky thighs, I bring out the prophylactic, my key to nirvana, and begin making preparations. The wrapping on the thing was ripped, and it was half dried-out, but this would not dissuade me. My excited, inexperienced (yeah, like I was Burt Reynolds in the sack department) two girlfriends grabbing the condom and excitedly unrolling it before it could be properly applied didn’t help, nor did the case of whiskey-dick that had started to set in… After a few minutes of drunken, frantic attempts to cram this sticky, useless wad of plastic onto my half-hard dick, I keel over unconscious and start snoring, thereby ruining my one and only chance to ever make it into Penthouse Forum.

Age 20: Putting the plastic-wrapped candy canes in the microwave at my boss’s Christmas party? It was a bad idea.

Age 21: I get off from work at noon and spend the day drinking and throwing knives into the wall with two guys named Weasel and Chuck From Hell. After Chuck leaves, me and Weasel get into an argument. I spray him with some oven cleaner or something, and he spits on me in retaliation. I respond in kind and the next thing I know am engaged in a bona-fide spitting war. About a half hour later I am completely drunk and, for the first and only time in my life (as far as I know), covered from head to toe in another man’s saliva. Saliva from a man named Weasel. I have a date with a heart-stoppingly pretty girl that night, so I hop on my bike to go home and clean up. While riding into my yard at high speed, a steel support cable attached to a telephone pole catches me across the head and clotheslines me off of my bike. I dust myself off, laugh and proceed to making myself as presentable as possible. Later, after a few glasses of wine, my intelligent, delightful, sexy date and I recline on the grass at a private little spot in a local park and stare up at the full moon. She looks over, smiles and asks me how I got the red welt across my forehead. Laughing, I tell her the whole story, spittle and all. Suffice to say I do not get laid that night. Days later, when I call her at work, I’m told she’s not there. I can hear her and her coworkers in the background, laughing at me.

Age 23: If you’re going to fire a bottle rocket into a full can of beer, don’t do it in the house.

Age 24: I stumble in the door at three in the morning, drunk, and find four or five friends and roommates watching a porno video. Bleary and off-balance, I brace myself on the wall and glance at the screen, which features an attractive young lady coughing and choking as she forces a big, lumpy weiner all the way down her throat, and boast, “Aw, I can do that!” before passing out. I wake up with no memory of this incident. My roommates, however, recall it in great detail. And often.

Age 26: Planning to fry up some okra, I put a bunch of oil in a pan, throw it on the stove and crank the heat to “high.” The phone rings, and I get into this extended long-distance conversation, no doubt on a really important topic like how awesome Black Flag was in ’84 or something. I totally forget about the stove until some time later, when I walk back to the front of the apartment and am bathed in a thick, black smoke. Through it I can see the pan, which is glowing red-hot and beginning to sag. The oil has totally evaporated, generating the foul, clinging fog that’s coating my kitchen with soot. I somehow manage to take care of the situation before my apartment bursts into flame and kills everyone on the block, and spend a little time trying to clean the oily muck off of my kitchen cabinets. The pan is half-melted and totally fucked. After a while, I decide dealing with the mess isn’t worth the effort and ride my bike to the market to buy some replacement supper. Walking around, I notice a cute girl glance at me, do a double take and then give me a big smile. I smile back, nod and continue to shop, swaggering around and grinning at everyone, convinced I’m the stud of the supermarket. I shuck and jive over to produce, which has mirrors on the walls above the various vegetables, and catch my reflection. My hair is standing on end and my face is covered in greasy, black ash.

Age 27: I spend a lot of time holding up the bar at local Irish pub Durty Nelly’s. I didn’t think I was spending THAT much time there until one late afternoon, when the phone rings. Sadly, it’s for me. And it’s long-distance.

Ages 28-34: Nothing! Nothing but smoooooth sailing through the calm, pleasant seas of social propriety! I am accepted for who I am and respected, godammit!


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