A "chief" by any other name is still a "champ."

...But first, a last-minute random thought: I might be stretching my neck out here, but I think Saddam Hussein would be a fun guy to hang around with.

And now for the post:

I've always loved those pre-packaged nicknames you use around the office to address other guys. For example, you shout across cubicles to your buddy at work, “What's up, chief?” Then he may reply with, “Nothing's new, sports fan. How about on your end, cool breeze?” “Nothing new here either. Stay cool, hero.” “Peace out, Rock star.”

I like generic nicknames. They transform everybody into an instant friend. They're great for when you're talking to a guy you remember liking, but you can't remember his freggin' name. That's the cool thing about nicknames: you only give them to people you like. So if somebody rolls up on you and drops a “What's shakin', Kimosabe?” on you, you know you're a friend.

I've been working on a list of new generic nicknames we can use around the office and at the local sports bar. Below is what I've come up with so far. Some nicknames have usage notes annexed:

Bull's eye
Anchorman (not for use on fat guys; feelings may be hurt)
Smokestack (excellent for pot-smoking friends)
Habenero (Do not use on people of Hispanic descent)
Space man
Golf pro
Pepper gun
Slider (for heterosexuals only)
Cold brew
LL Cool (insert person's name here; eg, LL Cool Eugene)
Cold cash
Coon dog (Caucasian friends only, please)
Cold drink
Home plate

A nuance of the nickname game is the vaguely insulting nickname. It's still a term of endearment, but it has a whiff of condescension. Reserve these for people you already know and with whom you've established a friendship:

Cheese whiz
Lube job (heterosexuals only)
Rubber crutch (not for the handicapped)
Wet paint
Decaf latte
Sand trap
Red tape
Square knot
Bean bag
Gag gift
Lug nut



*I'm glad the state of New Mexico got its name before the age of mass marketing. Should New Mexico have attained statehood today, they'd name it “New and Improved Mexico, now with 92% fewer Mexicans.” And the state slogan would be “Move here today and receive a free month of AOL.”

*I think a better name for the Roman Sun God would be “Celsius.”

*Here's an idea for the fast food industry. I call it the Premium Line. Menu items cost a bit more, but reasonably intelligent people take your order and prepare the food. The rejects interact with the people in the cheap line, which is what we stand in today. The franchise pays employees in the Premium Line more money, of course, which is why you pay a premium to use it. But tell me this wouldn't be worth it. No jacked up orders. No missing fries. No foreign bodies in the food. Here's an extra dollar. I'll take a Whopper with cheese, hold the morons.

*Everybody jokes about women who visit public restrooms in pairs. That's fine. In fact, it's downright cute. Often they have to tinkle, refresh their makeup or decide how to divvy up the two guys they just met at the bar. But every once in a while, one of them is visiting the restroom to drop a deuce. Do you ladies still appreciate the company? And what's that conversation like, anyway? “Bear down on that turd, girl. Don't stop 'til you hear a kerplunk.”

*The irony in matching wits with a halfwit is, you usually get outwitted by half.

*I've spent 2 years criticizing TV commercials on this blog. I've learned some things. Although advertisers have a million ways to bullshit us, the message they impart on our subconscious distills to one of five: Buy our shit because: 1) you'll get laid. 2) you'll prove you're smarter and more sophisticated than the average guy. 3) your kids will love you. 4) you pain and fears will go away. 5) it tastes good. But don't hate advertisers. They're a blessing. Nobody understands human motivation better than they do. And if you pay attention to them, you'll learn a lot about people, including yourself. Plus, you'll never run dry of blogging topics.

*Here's a good answer to the trick question, Mr. So-and-So, when did you stop beating your wife? Answer: Before I started, jerkoff.

*When God was fashioning our bones, joints and teeth, He mustn't have yet created the element titanium. He could have saved us a great deal of trouble if He made those parts out of that miraculous metal. Plus we could place magnets on ourselves. Hella cool. Imagine an 80-year-old guy walking around like he's Wolverine from the X-men.

*I just heard a Public Service Announcement by the members of boy band N-Sync. Get this. They're coming out against people who make light of the seizure disorder, epilepsy. That's right. Epilepsy. Are epilepsy-haters really a problem? How many people on the entire planet are cold-hearted enough to poke fun at a guy having a seizure. Hey buddy, I've got to paint my fence. Can you hold this can of paint for a few minutes? Or, Say there fella. Are you impersonating a tuning fork? And Here's another PSA I don't understand: Support Breastfeeding. Huh? Who's against that? Maybe a few guys at the formula plant, but nobody else. Women have been breastfeeding since the dawn of time. Plus there's an outside chance you get to see a boob. These PSA people are self-important douchebags. Why don't they tell us something useful? Remind everybody not to go swimming for an hour after eating a hot dog.


Costco is the reason for the season

Last year I shared an experience at Costco during the Christmas Season. I'm posting it again this year. I hope this tale will become a tradition, in fact. Plus, the crap I just wrote isn't postworthy. So I did a quick cut-and-paste of some Christmas leftovers. So please enjoy it whether it's your first or second time around. Merry Christmas to you, all my darling readers.

Having returned from Costco, I’m happy to report the Christmas Spirit thrives. It hangs thick in the air and infects all who inhale it or imbibe it mixed with an equal portion of liquor. It resonates in the horn-beeps of armed motorists who for a lack of a clean shot stew behind sluggish, wayward motorists in the left lane. It shines in the eyes of the child who gave me the finger on my drive home. Merry Christmas, little fella. I hope Mom and Dad give you the news of divorce this year. And what might that be in your stocking? Are those admission papers to military school? You’re twice blessed, young man.

Retailers hustle all year earning little or no profit merely to survive until the holiday season, where they capture the Spirit along with windfall profits which will keep them afloat until the next year. Likewise, I live for the Christmas Season. It rekindles my heart. It redeems my soul. But most importantly, it moves me to shop at Costco.

My trip began with a gridlock formation in the Costco parking lot. It was the funniest thing. An old man was trying to prove his virility by backing into an empty parking space (the empty space itself was a Christmas Miracle). Had he pulled in, it would have taken a few seconds of everybody’s time. Opting to back in, he exceeded his diminishing driving abilities. It wasn’t long before he found himself in a Christmastime quandary. Through a series of over-corrections, he had wedged himself obliquely between two parked cars. His front end protruded enough to block traffic in both directions. The stationary thoroughfare locked in those Costco patrons trying to back out of their spaces. Several motorists blared their horns in celebration of the Christmas Spirit. Fearing gunplay might accompany the Christmas Horns Medley, I resisted the temptation to join them. I eventually found available parking in the adjacent zip code. The aforementioned driver was ambulanced to St. Joseph’s Medical Center after a road rage battery. Those of you wishing to send a fruitcake can email me for his room number.

I entered the store awash in Christmas Spirit. Several patrons loitered in the entryway while talking on cell phones, rifling through their wallets or attending to other personal matters. They afforded me the opportunity to test my driving skills by maneuvering my shopping cart around a constellation of bovine discount shoppers. Naturally I had to fish my membership card out of my wallet while negotiating the dicey entryway. I had to laugh when the Costco Nazi girl in the Santa hat failed to look at my card as I conspicuously displayed it. Oh, well. It was fun just fumbling for the thing.

As I shopped I encountered several more bovine discount shoppers who in a frenzy of Christmas Spirit cut me off, blocked my forward progress and screened me from whatever merchandise might have taken my interest. They congregated around the food samples and competed for morsels of smoked salmon, potato soup and cheese spread. I can only hope some red and green glass shards found their way into the samples. What are the holidays without the hors d'oeuvres? Merry Christmas.

I finally finished my shopping and proceeded to the checkout lines. I found a short line -- another Christmas Miracle! Well, it was short when I entered it. Fearing I’d be lonely this holiday season, a Marlboro-smoking hag barreled her way in front of me. How thoughtful. But for her, I’d have zipped out of Costco without the opportunity to bask in Christmas cheer. The Marlboro lady didn’t have a cart or any merchandise. Instead she beckoned a son (I assumed after seeing the cart-toting male behind me that a man mustered the courage to copulate with her long enough to reproduce) to insert himself and his wares between me and the cashier. The son initially showed reluctance. He gestured at me. But the Marlboro lady assured him I wasn’t worthy of consideration. After all, I had the nerve to enter the line before she got there. The Christmas Spirit prompted me to yield to the son. I suspected he had enough troubles. I moved along to the next line.

It moved surprisingly fast. Before I knew it I was loading my 9-pack of Duraflame Logs on the conveyor belt along with several food items. The cashier and the bagger both seemed friendly enough. The former uttered a hello before whispering to the latter. It didn’t take long for me to learn that the whispering was about my decision to load the case of logs on the conveyor. Said the bagger “Next time, sir, you can leave the case of logs in the cart. Now Cece has to lift it.” At once I offered to lift the case myself, but it fell on deaf ears. The Christmas Spirit had infected these two like a case of gonorrhea. They wouldn’t hear of it. Instead, they struggled with the case together and placed it back in the cart, all the while flashing me contemptuous looks. I noticed that Cece was wearing a wrist brace. One has to wonder why they’d put a cripple on a warehouse register. Many large and bulky items make there way through checkout. Perhaps a job scrubbing bathroom shitters would prove more befitting an employee in her condition. I made certain to suggest that very thing to the line manager on my way out. Anyway, I wondered whether long hours of cashiering wore her wrist. Perhaps her wrist gave way to the chronic stress of furnishing her boyfriend with hand jobs. But for a possible case carpal-tunnel syndrome, I’d have encouraged her to wipe her ass with her attitude. As a healthcare professional, I couldn’t encourage her to further aggravate her ailment. Conscience got the better of me.

I spent my money and it was time to leave. Costco members know you don’t just stroll out of the building. You have to prove you’re not a shoplifter by presenting your receipt to the Costco Doorman. Usually two lines form -- one for each doorman. Today's group of bovines didn’t understand the “form-a-line” concept. The one doorman was standing there with an idle Sharpie Marker. I saw my chance. I darted past the bovines. Just then the other one -- this one a lady, so what does that make her -- a doorperson? -- shouts “people, we have to form two lines. That’s it. Two lines!” Now I started feeling pangs of guilt. Being as smart as your average kindergartner and knowing how to form a line had put me at an advantage. Consequently I zipped past several patrons who’d arrived before me. I’d be damned if I were going to lie in the moral gutter with the Marlboro lady. So I stopped and gestured several bovines to take cuts. But they didn’t get the message. They just chewed hay and stared. That didn’t stop a lady behind me from thundering past and filling the gap with her big, fat Christmas Spirit. I surmised she had a “Save Tookie” rally to get to. I figured that was more important than my thawing chicken pot pie. I waited my turn. Again.

I eventually made it to the doorman who noticed the Heat Dish in my cart. He disapproved of my purchase. In fact, he questioned my sanity. “All these people are buying these things and it hasn’t even gotten cold yet. Crazy.” He didn’t appreciate the irony that even as he spoke, he was wearing a jacket, snowcap and gloves! I saw he was chock full of Christmas Spirit. So I told him that I hoped Santa would bring him that man-sized penis he’s been hoping for so he can donate the 3rd grader one he currently has to charity.

So ended my trip to Costco and so began my Christmas Season. I hope you’re enjoying it as much as I am!

Merry Christmas.


Christmastime in the Aire

Above anything else, my blog's purpose to educate and empower my readers. As the Christmas spirit infects us and we feel the urge to celebrate, let's remember these guidelines for the holiday season:

1) Egg Nog should be referred to as “Non-Viable-Tissue-Mass Nog.”

2) Do not under any circumstances expose the general public to second-hand frankincense or myrrh. Although no scientific evidence suggests either is a carcinogen, both scents have connotations with the Christian holiday of Christmas. Please feel free to burn ganja, celebrate with public nudity or urinate in the snow. These are all nonsecular forms of holiday “art.” Those of you creative types who just drank a Thirstbuster should not be tempted to urinate any Christian symbols in the snow. Please stick to abstract designs or your name and you'll be fine.

3) The mythical figure Santa Claus is a staple of Christmas. Unfortunately people have depicted Santa as a white, heterosexual male slave elf-owner animal abuser who keeps his oppressed wife, Mrs. Claus, at home baking cookies while he takes all the credit for Xmas. From now on, Santa's sleigh will be drawn by high-IQ dolphins who work for a livable wage. Santa will not harness these magnificent creatures with reigns. Rather, the dolphins bump the sleigh across the night sky with their noses. Also, Santa is no longer white or straight. Until further notice, he's a gay Asian man bearing a striking resemblance to the guy who played Sulu on Star Trek.

4) The following names: Mary, Joseph, Christopher, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Jesus (pronounced Hey-Soose), James, Peter, Jude, Titus and the surname Wiseman are all prohibited on all government forms or private forms whose enterprises are all or in part subsidized by the federal government (such as student loan applications and FHA mortgages). If you have one of the above names and need to fill out a government form, please denote your Christian name with an “X,” as in X-Mas, to avoid violating the Separation of Church and State codified in the Constitution (Constitutional scholars: I know what you're going to write) and disqualifying yourself from government aid. These names are fine to speak and use in the privacy of your own home, both during the Xmas holiday and the rest of the year, but not in a public forum where government tax dollars partially fund the event.

4a) All Biblical names prior to the New Testament (eg, Josh, Joel, Zeek, Ike, etc.) are, for the moment, acceptable names to include on government forms or to use in pubic schools; however, pending an investigation by the Muslim Anti-Defamation League, these names may be deemed offensive at any time, in which case these names will be denoted either with an “X,” as above, or with the Star of David. Contact your local chapter of the ACLU for up-to-date information on which names are still non-offensive.

5) The Xmas spirit attracts people to America from all over the world. While “undocumented” aliens are free to cross the border at will, they must renounce Catholicism at the fence, whereupon they're free to vote and attain US credentials such as voter ID and driver license. Just make sure you're spending your days in the fruit fields and not at church, vatos.

6) Xmas carols are part of the holiday season. But please sing only those carols that celebrate the winter season and do not explicitly mention “Christ.” Winter Wonderland is an example of an acceptable carol. Singing Amy Grant songs released prior to her pop cross-over constitutes a Class 3 misdemeanor. Anyone playing Kenny G Xmas CDs audible to public thoroughfare will be beaten to a pulp by municipal peace officers with candy cane nightsticks. When the offender, above, opts for Michael Bolton songs, he will be punished by sodomy with a peppermint stick.


Tag-Meme Thingy

My good friend and sometime-nemesis NWJR tagged me for one of these blog-tag-meme things. I've always ignored them because I couldn't imagine anybody would be interested. But it occurred to me that I LOVE learning personal tidbits about fellow bloggers. I really do. Isn't that strange? We hate when others talk about themselves, but we love when others write about themselves. Anyway, instead of dreaming up a collection of quips or a contrarian essay on why bigotry is a virtue or some such nonsense, I'm going to post a little diary entry as described below:

"Each player of this game starts with the '6 weird things about you'. People who get tagged need to write a blog of their own 6 weird things as well as state this rule clearly. In the end, you need to choose 6 people to be tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave a comment that says “you are tagged” in their comments and tell them to read your blog."

Six Jacked-Up Things about Lightning Bug's Butt

1) I use a Sonicare electric toothbrush. The unit automatically shuts off after 2 minutes. I like to go for more than 2-minutes (the wife would argue with that.) Anyway, I have a compulsion to power down the toothbrush manually before the second 2-minute interval concludes – otherwise I fear I'll develop a terrible disease. I've never failed to remember to turn the Sonicare off in time, and I've used it for 3 years. I realize how irrational this is. I don't really believe a toothbrush timer is going to give me cancer or something. But God forbid I let the thing run and then develop a horrible disease coincidentally. I can't spend the rest of my life – however short it may be – wondering whether I could have prevented it by following the rules.

2) I'm pleased with my image in the mirror, but I'm appalled at most photos of myself. I secretly hope that the mirror is more truthful than the camera. But I doubt it. Everybody else looks as good or better on film than they do in real life. Why would I be any different?

3) I live in constant fear of scorpions. I cannot enter a room until I have adequate light to examine the floors. I violently crush and shake my shoes and slippers before wearing them. Every blemish on the floors and walls that I spot with the corner of my eye is a potential threat. I often wake in a panic having dreamed about scorpions. Sometimes I awake slapping my chest or legs or wherever I dreamed the scorpion to be. It takes me several minutes to convince myself the arachnid isn't real. And get this crap: once I forced myself to step on a blemish in the carpeting, telling myself that it's NEVER a scorpion, so stop obsessing. I was in bare feet. Long story short: it was a goddamn scorpion. The one time in HUNDREDS that I assume everything is all right, it's not. The scorpion didn't sting me. But it didn't die, either. I weigh almost 200 pounds. I had to hunt it down and strike it 3 times with a shoe before it succumbed. Rugged bastards, those scorpions. That event changed my life forever. It taught me that all those little worries that never materialize (so you should just stop worrying) become reality the minute you dare dismiss them. Fucked me up, man. It made me a chronic neurotic.

4) I don't want to die. But sometimes a lack of obligation, consequence, worry and a privation of the senses sounds refreshing. Knowing that it will all end one day is very soothing. It gives me a perverted, smug satisfaction that one day soon, I won't have to give a damn and that I can return to that peaceful, 100-million-year slumber so rudely interrupted in 1971.

5) I stopped maturing at 12. Other than taking an interest in the opposite sex, I haven't changed since childhood. As a teen and then as a young adult, I assumed one day the aging process would instill a decent work ethic and a sense of responsibility. I figured a codified adult mentality would “kick-in” at some point. I'm in my mid-30s and I'm still waiting. My biggest priorities are still: sleeping in, dodging work and responsibility, watching TV, surfing the Net, scoring good meals and dessert, playing games, working out, hanging out, wasting time and doing as little as possible. No joke, people. Honest Indian. Mind you, I don't just long to do these things. I actually DO them. I've worked part-time most of my adult life, including my present job. I still watch cartoons. I still eat candy. I still play with toys. I still contemplate what I want to be when I grow older. Between leisure time and a chance to earn more money, I'll take leisure every damn time. I've tried, but I can't give a damn about adult stuff. Who gives a shit about careers, productivity, mortgages and retirement funds, really? Fuck that shit. In fact, these things bring about the sentiments in #4, above.

6) I hate, HATE loud noises. I despise TV commercials because they raise the volume to obnoxious levels. Go ahead and bullshit me, Mr. Advertiser; just stop screaming at me, jagoff. I hate the sound of a telephone ring. Must it be so loud and ugly? Must it sound so suddenly, without warning? I hate lawnmowers and leaf blowers and car horns and jet planes and popping balloons. I hate anything that makes too much noise. You can always choose what to look at, but you can't choose what to hear. So any unpleasant noise is an invasion of my privacy. Loud noise robs me of my tranquility. Strangely, I enjoy the sound of traffic off in the distance, when it's quiet. In fact, that's my favorite sound.

Tag: All my Blogger Idols (Big Daddy Dave Morris, Latigo Flint, Blog Ho, Tornwordo, Miss Cellania and Rizzle Dizzle Riss).


More bullet-ins

*I think I'll open a franchise that competes with Hooters. People know Hooters for the skimpy shorts and tank tops the waitresses wear, thus the innuendo, Hooters. At my restaurant, the girls are going to wear g-strings. I'm calling the place Cooters. Or maybe Butters. Or Hooters, Cooters and Butters. The guys will have to wear the g-strings, too. Just to humiliate them, I'm going to refer to each as a SHORT-order cook.

*Remember the killer whale at Sea World who attacked his trainer? Wouldn't it be fun to pit the whale in a fight with that Tiger who attacked Roy, of Siegfried and Roy? I'd pay 50 bucks for a ticket to see those two in cage match. My money's on the tiger. He's got that killer instinct; he went right for the throat. That whale bit the trainer's foot. Wait. I just Googled Sigflamer and Boy Toy Roy. The article informs the reader that the tiger who put the bash on Roy was "destroyed." That doesn't seem fair to me. The tiger was destroyed but the killer whale gets off with a reprimand and 3 nights with no sardines. Maybe that's because nobody wants to dispose of a 5000-pound corpse. It's easier to scoop up a dead trainer once every few years.

*"Damn you" is the mildest insult involving a swear word. "Damn" was about the only swearing that would make it past broadcast editors until the 1980s. But if you think about it, saying "damn you" is the worst thing you can say. You're entreating the Lord to condemn the person to fiery damnation for eternity. I'd much rather hear a "go fuck yourself" any day. That actually sounds fun! Ironically, if you "fuck yourself" too often, you might be damned to hell. It depends how literally you take the Bible.

*I saw a bumper sticker that read, "I brake for no apparent reason." That's bad news for him and me, because I have a bumper sticker that reads "I sometimes rear-end those who brake unnecessarily." Maybe fate brought us together.

*People joke about office politics, employees at each other's throats, infighting, etc. But if you think about it, work is a big building full of people who all don't want to be there, who dream of quitting one day, who hate most of the people they work for and who are watching the clock with bated breath so they might escape and beat the inevitable traffic jam on the drive home. Suddenly, we all seem heroically well-adjusted. Don't we?

*I don't care what anybody says. Coffee tastes gross. I think that's why Starbucks can charge 5 bucks for a cup. They've earned it -- getting something that gross to taste that good. Until David Copperfield can magically transform a turd into a flank steak, he doesn't have shit on a barista.

*I worked at a hospital once and I asked a patient how he was doing. He replied, "It hurts to breathe." I quipped, "Well then, you should stop doing that." Two minutes later the guy coded on me. Look dude, don't be so literal in your next life. It was a freggin' joke.

*I'm probably not the first person to think of this, but I'd like to see an analogue watch like the Mickey Mouse watches, where the hands are Mickey's arms, only instead, I'd like male porn stars featured on the watch face. Three guesses what the second-hand is.

*I like that expression, shit or get off the pot. I want to start a new one that means basically the same thing: Fuck or get off the sheep.



*I must be shedding my sex appeal as the years advance. I sprayed some Axe Body Spray on my chest and abdomen yesterday. As the commercials depict, this should be the point where several attractive women materialize and grope me. Instead my wife appeared from the kitchen and asked me when the hell I was going to take out the garbage.

*They say “do what you love and you'll never work a day in your life.” That's hogwash. I love doing lots of things, but I wouldn't want to do any of them 40 hours per week. That's too much time to stick with any task or hobby. For instance, I love popping those little plastic bubbles in the packing material. But after a couple of hours of compulsive pinching, I'm ready to set it down. I also love eating buffalo wings and jerking off – sometime simultaneously. But again, after a couple hours, I discard the bones, zip my pants and leave the bus stop. The point is, we need to shorten the workweek.

*There are so many disciplines of martial arts: tae kwon do, jujitsu, judo, karate, Sudoku, etc; they all amount to the same thing: chopping the guy in the throat and kicking him in the bean bag. In fact, I'll bet “tae kwon do” is Chinese for “bruised testicles.”

*Just today I was reading a Gary Larson comic book in a Carl's Jr. I was in a giggly mood and laughing my fool head off. I thought I was keeping my laughter subtle, but evidently I wasn't. Some guy approached my table and said, “Excuse me. My mom over there would love to know what you're reading.” I turned to his mom at the next table and answered, “Mein Kampf.” No, I didn't actually say that. But I wish I would have thought of it then instead of during my drive home.

*Ever notice how many “consultants” are out there? How do they earn their livings? It seems business would be scarce. Do you know anybody who's ever said, "I don't know what the fuck I'm doing. I'm going to pay somebody else to tell me?" Yeah, sure, my work hires consultants. I always want to ask the consultant, "Hey buddy, how the hell do YOU know how to fix our problems? You don't even work here! If you wanted a sandwich, I'd have to point you to the cafeteria!”