The Truth about Marriage

Hallelujah, I’ve seen the light. Thanks to conservative talk shows, I’ve finally concluded that gays should never be allowed to marry.

It’s comforting to know that there are voices of reason to guide me in this topsy-turvy world. Rush and Glen, you’ve taught me so much. In fact, as a result of subjecting myself to marathon sessions of Fox News I’m now convinced that ALL committed, long-term relationships should be outlawed. Judged by conservative standards, marriage is clearly anti-American, anti-capitalist, and anti-democracy.

A marriage typically consists of two people living in one house and sharing a single bank account. I honestly can’t envision a more thoroughly un-American arrangement. Is this or is this not the God-fearing U.S. of A, where the pooling of assets and resources in communal, egalitarian fashion is considered a slippery slope toward socialism?

Honest, hard-working Americans agree that the free market should be the sole determiner of a person’s lifestyle and finances, yet marriage often forces a wealthy person to share his/her income with a far less successful spouse. Is there a more deplorable example of wealth redistribution? Why should the proletariat get to ride the coattails of the upper class? In true capitalist fashion, the primary breadwinner should get the bedroom while the secondary earner is consigned to the garage until he/she gets a better job. You want mattress privileges, loser? Maybe you shouldn’t have settled for a Bachelor’s degree in social work.

The communist underpinnings of marriage aren’t limited to income discrepancy. In the event that one partner is laid off from work, marriage potentially acts as the ultimate form of welfare. We Americans expect to succeed or fail on our own merit, not be bailed out by the charity of the taxpayer or some wealthy spouse. And health care? If you think Obamacare was a socialist plot, just wait until you see how many people are benefiting from a joint insurance policy. It’s sickening. And not just the adults in the family…buy your own Ritalin, freeloading brats.

Marriage doesn’t simply undermine capitalism, it runs counter to the whole concept of democratic society. By definition, democracy requires at least three participants. A democracy of two is unsustainable. If I want fish and you want chicken, who casts the deciding vote? Polygamy would be a much more democratic arrangement.

I’m not saying that married people are evil…I’m saying that every time someone gets married, the terrorists win.

So to anyone considering entering into the subversive, socialist, democracy-eroding pact that is marriage: we’re on to you. No longer will you be allowed to chip away at the very fabric of capitalist society with your unholy, un-American matrimony.

Down with marriage. God bless the USA.


Tangent: Stuff That Can Be Named After You When You Die (in descending order of desirability)

1. Library (Presidential)
2. Charitable Foundation
3. Stadium/Performance Venue
4. Scientific Principle Involving an Animal (Schrodinger, Pavlov)
5. Telescope (Hubble)
6. Freeway
7. Stretch of Freeway
8. Onramp
9. Street
10. Street in the Projects
11. Cul-De-Sac
12. Park Bench
13. Disease (Lou Gherig’s, Chrone’s)
14. Law (Megan’s)
15. Alert (Amber)

The Truth about Doppelgangers (aka The Rob Thomas Principle)

Each of us has a look-alike somewhere in the world.

There are a limited number of genetic variations available to the human species, so eventually you’re bound to hear the dreaded words: Wow, you look just like my friend so-and-so.

At which point you should begin digging for information about this mystery twin and plotting his/her demise. Why? Because of the Rob Thomas Principle.

Every month I try to hit up at least a couple live music shows in the Bay Area, and I occasionally run across this one very talented musician who happens to look exactly like Rob Thomas. I can’t help but pity the poor bastard. Honestly, I don’t know why he even tries.

There isn’t room at the top for more than one Rob Thomas, Jennifer Aniston, Dave Matthews, or Kate Winslet. (Incidentally, I once dated a girl who looked like Kate Winslet. No kidding, it was uncanny. She was hot, but she’ll forever be known as That Hot Chick Who Looks Exactly Like Kate Winslet. Could be worse, though. Somewhere in the world there has to be That Freaky Dude Who Looks Just Like Steve Buscemi. Ouch.)

I currently have at least two doppelgängers. One apparently lives near Florence, Italy. I’m not concerned with him. Italian Shane is free to join the mafia or make pasta from scratch or gesture lewdly at blonde women or whatever Florencians do for fun.

The other, though, is closer to home. I’ve never seen him in person, but I’m keeping close tabs on this guy. Whenever I learn of a confirmed sighting, I probe for details. As far as I can tell he seems to be a disheveled skateboarding loser, but if eye-witnesses start reporting any signs of imminent success, I’ll have to take him out. What can I say, I’m trigger happy. Even an upgrade from skateboard to bicycle would seal this guy’s fate.

It’s not like I’m realistically planning on getting famous, but you never know. I have skills. I can juggle, and hey, there’s always porn. Even if I don’t achieve lasting fame, everyone is entitled to at least fifteen minutes, and I don’t want mine diluted by the inconveniently-timed success of some skateboarding jackass who isn’t even cuter than me.

If you already share your face with a well-known celebrity, you’re out of luck. Sucks to be you. But the rest of us are still in the game. It’s a race to the top, and your twin could be pulling away even as you read this. Right now he’s practicing stand-up comedy in his garage, playing guitar with a soon-to-be top twenty band, auditioning for that Viagra commercial.

Why risk being Rob Thomased out of your rightful place in the spotlight? And even if you don’t give a flying damn about fame, consider the fact that your twin could end up being the next Jeffrey Dahmer. Do you really want to spend the rest of your life looking like That Guy Who Ate People?

Stay vigilant, and if it comes down to it, don’t be afraid to annihilate your twin. It’s you or him.

The Truth about Life After 25

Age 25 is the tipping point. After a quarter-century on this planet, you’re officially on a downward slope toward the grave.

Post-25 birthdays are not cause for celebration. They should be solemn affairs, all weeping and hand-wringing and leaping on coffins (incidentally I recommend spending your 26th birthday in a coffin because, hey, might as well get used to it. It’s going to be a long eternity).

My birthday is fast approaching, and I’m unthrilled. Here are a few of the things that make me feel old as dirt.

1. Having Money

I was perpetually broke during my late teens and early twenties. I’m not saying it was enjoyable, but earning a viable salary is a constant reminder that I’m an honest-to-God adult (boo) with a time-consuming career and responsibilities (hiss).

My younger friends are always complaining about money, and I feel like a smug corporate asshole when I can’t join in with the bitching. They’re all, I can’t afford to pay my rent this month and I’m like, I totally wanted an iPad but I decided not to buy one until it gets a front-facing camera. Sucks that financial stability reminds me of my own mortality and imminent dementia, but there you have it. I never claimed to be an optimist.


There was once a service called pop-corn, and it was magic.

Back before everyone started carrying cellphones with digital displays, a common method for telling the time was to pick up any landline phone in the house (yeah, I said landline. Google it, kiddies) dial p-o-p-c-o-r-n, and listen to a disembodied lady-voice as it lifelessly recited, “At the tone, Pacific Standard Time will be [insert time here]. BOOP.” (I added “Boop” to indicate the sounding of the tone. She didn’t say Boop. And I suppose if you were on the East Coast, she didn’t say Pacific Standard Time either, but whatever. Don’t get all nitpicky.)

As a kid I didn’t understand the concept of automated recordings. I used to call popcorn whenever my parents were distracted, marveling at the phone-lady’s ability to utilize identical tone and inflection with every call. (And btw, there was a time when I made those calls on an actual rotary phone. Fuck I’m old.)

Knowledge of time is no longer a commodity. The era of the wristwatch has passed. Time is cheap, and pop-corn is history.

3. Walkmans (Walkmen?)

When I was a kid, everyone had a Walkman. It was the size of a small dog and played analog tapes one side at a time, 5 songs per side. You carried it on your hip and listed in the direction of the device while you walked. It was essentially music-playing ballast, useful for weighing you down in a tornado and not much else.

Skipping tracks was not an option. To avoid a bad song you fast-forwarded (“fast” in this case being a relative term). Usually it was easier to just suffer through the clunkers. After five songs you had to pull out the cassette, flip it over, and start the whole process again, assuming the Walkman’s toothlike gears hadn’t chomped down on the tape and left you with a stringy mess on your hip.

More than any other device these days, the mp3 player makes me angry and resentful toward today’s youth. Last week, Apple came out with this:

It’s the size of a few Chicklets and can hold an entire musical library with room to spare.

Screw you, youth of today. Spoiled little bitches.
4. Sports

It’s not playing them that makes me feel old. I’m actually more physically proficient today than I was at 20. It’s watching sports that makes me feel like a corpse, because the announcers make it seem like any guy who’s still playing basketball at age thirty is a geriatric miracle. He’s only THIRTY YEARS OLD, for Christ sakes. It’s hard to put your age in perspective when you’re a fan of an activity in which guys younger than you are considered washed up and decrepit.