Once upon a time, Caleb Lawrence McGilvary was a hero—a Good Samaritan with crazy hair and an even crazier personality.
This past February, Caleb—known only as “Kai” at the time—found himself in a car with Jett Simmons McBride, a man who claimed to be Jesus sent down from Heaven to save the world. Unfortunately, his methods were rather twisted.
In Fresno, at the Pacific Gas and Electric company, McBride drove his car into an employee and then attacked a woman who came to help the injured utility worker. And that’s when Caleb saw his opening.
Using a hatchet as his weapon of choice, Caleb clubbed McBride repeatedly, foiled the attack and saved the day. The interview he later gave to a local news crew even went viral and before he knew it, Caleb was an Internet sensation.
Rumor has it that Caleb and Galfy were lovers and spent last weekend together at Galfy’s home in Clark, New Jersey. Actually, police recovered text messages between the guys that said things like “I’ll be there at this time” and “come pick me up,” so it likely isn’t rumor at all. There were even some clues on Facebook, though nothing specific has been released yet.
Police know that Caleb and Galfy were together last Sunday night—and Galfy’s semi-nude and ultra-dead body was found Monday morning—so the dots certainly connect.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how quickly you can go from hero to villain in this crazy world of ours. Of course, this transformation is easier for people already “left of center,” if you know what I mean.
If not, then just ask Caleb. If he’s not left of center—far, far left of center—then I don’t know who is!
Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t even consider buying a lottery ticket since I have a better chance of being struck repeatedly by lightning than ever winning a multi-million dollar windfall. Of course, a payout in the hundreds of millions is often too much for even me to resist, which is why ten tickets currently reside in my back pocket.
Since no clear winner emerged in Wednesday’s multi-state Powerball drawing—when the jackpot was a meager $360 million—the grand total has now risen to the second highest in U.S. history: $600 million!
In other words, a single winner could walk away with almost $377 million in cash. And though I know the odds are against me—and nearly everyone else who purchased a ticket—I certainly hope to be that guy.
The truth of the matter is that Saturday’s drawing will come and go, some group of co-workers at a panty hose plant in New Jersey will likely split the grand prize, and I’ll be lucky if even one of my numbers hit. About the best I can expect is a free ticket or, even better, reimbursement for the $20 I spent earlier today. Both seem to be long shots, though.
But there is always a chance. And that, I think, is why we all play the lottery—in the hopes that by some miracle, the planets will align, good fortune will smile upon us and we will become the newest millionaire in America.
No more bills, no more struggling to make ends meet and plenty of cash to spend on whatever the hell we want. How awesome would that be?
Of course, there are some alleged disadvantages to winning the lottery. Hell, there’s even some kind of television show about people who lose their winnings, experience excessive bad luck or simply watch their lives turn to shit after collecting such a large prize.
Personally, though, these are problems I would love to be able to experience for myself. Mostly because I don’t give in to superstitions and such. As long as my bank account is busting at the seams, I’m confident that I can deal with anything Fate throws my way. Bring it on!
The big drawing is Saturday and my numbers are set, so I should be ready for what I assume will be another disappointment—albeit an expected one. But if things do work out the way I hope they do, my wonderful readers will be the first to know.
“Don’t cry/Don’t raise your eye/It’s only teenage wasteland.” –From “Baba O’Riley” by The Who
Never were song lyrics more applicable or relatable than they were these last few weeks. Teenagers across our great nation left all their worries, inhibitions, concerns, logic and even common sense behind, choosing instead to break the rules, wreak havoc, embrace chaos and, in one tragic case, end a life.
Yes, it was a rough couple of weeks for teenagers, but rougher still for those whose paths led them into this Teenage Wasteland.
Richard Portillo had a real passion for soccer. So he often spent his free time serving as a referee for Fut International, a Hispanic soccer league for kids age 5 to 17. Games were held in his Salt Lake City suburb, which made volunteering even easier for him.
Sadly for Portillo, the April 27th game he refereed would turn out to be his last.
Following a clear penalty, Portillo issued a yellow card to a 17-year-old player, warning him that a second card would lead to his ejection from the game. As Portillo was recording the incident on his notepad, the carded player suddenly turned around and punched him in the head, allegedly behind his ear and towards his neck.
The player was immediately tossed out and after experiencing some dizziness, Portillo managed to walk away, seemingly unharmed. Unfortunately, things took a drastic turn for the worst as Portillo’s condition deteriorated. First came the headaches, followed by disorientation and eventually, he slipped into a coma. And he remained in that state until Sunday, when he finally died from his injuries.
And all because some teenager couldn’t control himself or accept the consequences of his actions. Too bad things are out of his hands now. Currently, the charge against this violent teen is only aggravated assault, but rumor has it that an upgrade could be coming. For now, he remains in juvenile detention and, unless I’m horribly mistaken, he should probably get used to it… at least until he’s old enough to relocate to prison.
Give a 14-year-old an iPad and you just never know what will happen.
In this suburb outside Chicago, the teenager in question used his Apple device to access one of those online sex dating sites. He somehow arranged for a prostitute and soon welcomed 22-year-old Dareka Brooks into his home.
After asking the young man to undress—which I’m sure he did since we all know what he was expecting—Brooks pulled out some pepper spray and attacked him. She escaped with his iPad, a jar full of money and—get this—his piggybank.
Fortunately, the authorities used the iPad to locate and arrest Brooks a short time later. She has been charged with armed robbery and will appear in court at the end of the month. The young victim appears to be safe, from everything but his parents’ wrath, that is. By now he probably wishes he was in jail… or feels like he is after being grounded for the rest of his teenage life.
Poor, horny bastard.
Police from Wisconsin to Illinois are on the lookout for a tan pickup truck pulling a white RV and allegedly heading to Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin. Inside the vehicle are three suspects thought to be responsible for robbing a Walworth gas station last Thursday. What sets this case apart, though, is the fact that only one of the suspects—the getaway driver—was an adult.
The armed robbers were kids: a girl between the ages of 10-13 and a boy aged 13-15. They burst into the gas station around 9 a.m., held the clerk at gunpoint, forced him to open the safe, grabbed the cash, jumped into the waiting truck and hauled ass. The vehicle was last seen heading south towards the Wisconsin-Illinois state line.
Authorities believe the suspects to be con artists who pose as a family, claim to need help and swindle money from local businesses and churches. And if nothing else, they also show just how dangerous crime can be when it becomes—to steal a phrase from Sly and the Family Stone—a “family affair.”
Have the unfortunate events surrounding the Boston Marathon bombings taught teenagers nothing?
In the case of Maryland’s Kyle Druckemiller—a 19-year-old who goes by the name Fuhrer on his Twitter page—the answer is obviously “no.”
Earlier this month, Druckemiller was arrested after his girlfriend’s father—suspicious since the young man once brought a loaded gun into his Germantown home—searched his duffel bag and made another shocking discovery. Inside the bag were several pipe bombs, a nine-volt battery, an improvised detonator, two timers and an alligator clip with wires.
Basically everything Druckemiller needed to create his own brand of domestic terrorism, if he so desired.
The good news is that nothing happened because the misguided young man is being held on $500,000 bond. If convicted, he could face as many as 25 years in prison, not to mention a $250,000 fine. Needless to say, the threat of such a punishment has caused Druckemiller to be very compliant.
He told authorities that he learned to make the bombs on YouTube, which certainly comes as no surprise. And like the Tsarnaev brothers in Boston, Druckemiller used components he took from fireworks to make the bombs—fireworks that were legally purchased in South Carolina and transported all the way back to Maryland.
Does anyone else sense a pattern forming here?
Our final story comes from Blue Valley High School in Kansas, where a seemingly harmless senior prank resulted in 100 students being suspended late last week.
In yet another display of teenage rebellion—and poor decision-making—students from Blue Valley broke a window near the pool area, poured inside, stripped down to their bathing suits—as far as I know—and proceeded to swim and cavort until a school resource officer discovered them. He prevented the students from leaving and by the time it was all said and done, all 100 students had been suspended for the remainder of Thursday and all day Friday—a forced three-day weekend that some of the students appreciated, especially seniors.
Other students, however, weren’t so pleased.
“It’s a vacation for the seniors because most of them have already checked out,” sophomore David Gressgott explained later. “But for me and my friends, we’re missing class. I have a test tomorrow that I’m going to be missing and might not be able to make up.”
Some parents were also upset by the punishment, which was even applied to a young man who never jumped into the pool, but stood and recorded the incident on his cell phone.
“I don’t think it’s fair that underclassmen that were watching and not participating got suspended for simply watching a senior prank,” David Gressgott’s mother Susan told reporters.
Though I understand what she means, the fact is that once students broke into the pool area—and everyone piled in, both swimmers and spectators—a crime had already been committed. And as they always say, “Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.”
Being a teenager isn’t easy. We all know that from either living through that period in our own lives or dealing with kids who are experiencing it now. Between raging hormones, the quest for identity and acceptance, sexual insecurities, hasty decisions and everything else tossed into the mix, it’s a wonder more teenagers don’t behave like the ones mentioned here. Actually, they probably do, only the smart ones don’t get caught or never do anything serious enough to draw attention.
Whatever the case may be, the truth is that as long as there are teenagers, there will always be teenagers in trouble. And what The Who referred to as “teenage wasteland” will undoubtedly continue with each passing generation.
It’s as predictable as night and day.
In 1908 America, Anna Jarvis petitioned her mother’s church to have a holiday set up in her honor. The request was granted and that May, the first Mother’s Day celebration took place. Jarvis eventually campaigned to have Mother’s Day recognized first in West Virginia—which happened in 1912—and then nationally. President Woodrow Wilson signed off on it two years later.
And so Mother’s Day as we know it here in the U.S. was born.
Observed each year on the second Sunday in May, Mother’s Day is supposed to be a celebration of mothers, grandmothers, godmothers and any other maternal figures; instead it has become a juggernaut of commercialism and big business.
Oddly enough, Anna Jarvis thought so, too. She even took measures to try to end the holiday she was so pivotal in creating. In 1923, Jarvis sued to stop a Mother’s Day event, unsuccessfully I might add. A decade later, she was arrested for disturbing the peace—she protested the selling of flowers by the American War Mothers group—and petitioned to have the words “Mother’s Day” removed from a postage stamp that bore her dead mother’s image, as well as a vase full of white carnations (her “flower of choice” for honoring deceased relatives—red carnations are for mothers who are still alive).
The fact that Mother’s Day remains in America means Jarvis obviously failed to have the holiday banned. She died poor, blind and childless in 1948. Ironically enough, the woman responsible for Mother’s Day never became a mother herself!
And what’s more, Jarvis wasted much of her fortune on lawsuits against florists during her life, only to have her end-of-life medical care anonymously funded by The Florist‘s Exchange. Irony times two!
These days, Mother’s Day is no less commercial and people spend obscene amounts of money on flowers, candy, greeting cards and gifts. Of course, it is the idea behind all these material rewards that makes this holiday so special.
We do these things because mothers are the greatest. They bring us into the world, nurture and care for us, teach us how to be better people and love and support us until the day they die. They deserve to be celebrated daily—and should be by their children, husbands and wives (in the case of our gay friends)—but recognizing them officially each year is important, too.
Of course, we must also accept that all mothers aren’t good mothers.
For every son who loves his mom and surprises her with fresh spring flowers or a spa getaway, there is another who curses his mother and wishes he had never been born to her. Some mothers kiss and hug; others beat, berate and abuse. It’s a fact of life.
Celebrating—or maybe condemning—a bad mummy then seems equally important. In the same way that good mothers deserve to be recognized for their efforts, bad mothers deserve to be criticized for their transgressions.
And just so we’re clear, the moniker of “bad mother” only belongs to actual bad mothers. Someone who grounds her son for behaving badly or refuses to let her 10-year-old daughter wear makeup would not qualify. A crackhead mom, on the other hand, would undoubtedly fit the bill.
What I am suggesting, of course, is a new holiday: Bad Mothers Day. Call it a celebration of women who are only mothers by virtue of having spawned human children, if you will. Or better yet, anti-Mother’s Day.
All the details can be worked out later—like when to schedule this historic holiday. I suggest finding a time that is convenient for everyone but bad mothers, a month that has so much holiday attention that it will take even more focus off these irresponsible people (like December, for instance) or just the butt end of any random month.
None of that matters until we get Bad Mothers Day approved, though.
As evidence of why such a holiday should be observed immediately—and nationally—I offer up Brenda Heist, a mother who made headlines last week for being just about as bad as they come.
In February 2002, Heist was living in Pennsylvania with her son and daughter. And sadly, things just weren’t going very well for her. She was in the midst of a divorce from her husband, Lee, and also had her request for housing assistance denied—money she was counting on so she could get her own apartment.
She got the news just after dropping her kids off at school one day. Emotionally distraught, Heist took a seat in a nearby park and proceeded to cry her eyes out. That’s when she was approached by three homeless wanderers—two men and a woman. They asked her what was wrong, comforted her and told her they were hitchhiking to Florida. Did she want to come?
In most situations like these—which obviously can’t be that common—you might expect a mother to thank these kind people, bid them good day and press on for the sake of her children.
Such was not the case with Brenda Heist.
Instead of rejecting their offer, Heist accepted it wholeheartedly and spent the next 11 years eating discarded food, living under bridges, working odd jobs for cash, shacking up with homeless men and doing everything but serving as a mother to her children.
She abandoned them without so much as a moment’s forethought, leaving everyone to wonder if she had been the victim of some violent crime or freak accident. Time passed and by 2010, Lee had officially declared her dead and eventually remarried.
But there were still plenty of questions and no clear answers. At least not until last week.
Out of the freaking blue, the now 54-year-old Brenda Heist turned up in Key Largo, Florida and gave herself up to authorities. She told police she left her family behind because of stress, so police immediately contacted them to share the “good” news of her return.
I wish I could say that her family welcomed her back with open arms, embraced her as if 11 years had not passed and vowed to make their remaining years together count. Sadly, though, that was not the case.
Lee Heist doesn’t seem interested in reconnecting with his ex-wife, and who can blame him? After she disappeared, police treated him as a suspect and his reputation in the community suffered.
“The hardest thing I had to deal with was, the families of some of my children’s friends would not let them play with them, because of what they thought of me,” he recounted. “That just tore me apart.”
And daughter Morgan seems even less interested in seeing the mother who abandoned her at eight years old.
“I don’t think she deserves to see me,” the now 20-year-old Morgan said. “I don’t really have any plans on going to see her.”
Personally, I know she’s serious because on her Twitter feed, Morgan said that she hopes her mother “rots in hell.” Correct me if I’m wrong, but this isn’t a phrase normally associated with good mothers, is it?
I think not.
So in honor of the idea of Bad Mothers Day, let Brenda Heist of Florida stand as a shining example of why we need to start observing it NOW. Put simply, there are just too many bad mothers out there who both deserve and need to be exposed.
And this is our chance to do it.
The White House Correspondents’ Dinner was first established in 1920 to ensure better communication between the president and the press. Initially—and given the patriarchal nature of American society “back then”—only men were invited to attend.
Thank goodness President John F. Kennedy refused to attend in 1962 unless women were invited. Otherwise, this would have been nothing more than another Washington sausage fest… in a city still full of them, no less.
These days, the “Beltway gala” (or “nerd prom”) is used to raise money for journalism scholarships. The press and the Prez are always in attendance, but today’s event includes celebrities from Hollywood, sports, music, current events… you name it.
And it is always very entertaining. Take the event this past Saturday, which was no different and showed just how humorous our sitting president can be.
Being President of the United States is hard enough, but doing so without a sense of humor is even harder—just ask Gerald Ford, even though he only endured it (and us him) for a limited time. Fortunately, the same cannot be said for President Barack Obama, whose own brand of humor resembles mine in that it tosses the appropriate zingers but focuses primarily on self-targeted joking and self-inflicted wounding.
Check out some of the things he had to say.
ON HIS APPEARANCE: “These days I look in the mirror and I gotta admit: I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be.”
ON THE SEQUESTER: “Republicans fell in love with this thing. And now they can’t stop talking about how much they hate it—it’s like we’re trapped in a Taylor Swift album.”
ON THE HISTORY CHANNEL BEING ABSENT FROM THE DINNER AFTER THE DEPICTION OF SATAN IN “THE BIBLE” WAS SAID TO RESEMBLE THE PRESIDENT: “That never kept Fox News from showing up—they actually thought the comparison was not fair to Satan.“
ON CNN: Obama said that he admired their “commitment to cover all sides of the story, just in case one of them happens to be accurate.”
ON HIS REMARK THAT KAMALA HARRIS WAS THE COUNTRY’S “BEST-LOOKING ATTORNEY GENERAL”: “As you might imagine, I got in trouble when I got back home. Who knew (Attorney General) Eric Holder was so sensitive?”
Of course, the President wasn’t the only person who got in on the act. Comedian Conan O’Brien reprised his 1995 role as host and promised guests “two minutes of jokes, then 40 minutes on public employee pension reform.” And actor Kevin Spacey delighted the crowd with a spoof clip of his show House of Cards, only this was called House of Nerds.
The clip claims to be “secret footage” of how the Correspondents’ Dinner is planned and includes Spacey as his Majority Whip character from the show, Frank Underwood. It is hilarious and I strongly urge you to view it HERE.
All in all, Saturday was a good night in Washington because people lightened up, forgot about their political agendas and power trips, and spent some time laughing at each other. Famous people abounded, including John Legend, Sofia Vergara, Psy (even though I hate that song and dance… you know the one), Katy Perry, Matthew Perry (no relation) and Claire Danes, who stars in one of President Obama’s favorite shows, Homeland. And during a difficult time in our nation’s history—one that includes terrorism, natural disasters and other tragedies—this event reminded us all of one very important thing:
Sometimes you just have to stop and laugh. And sometimes, that’s all you can do.
Traffic jams, carpool lanes, construction crews, bad drivers, hitchhikers, highway patrolmen, emergency vehicles… these are all things you might expect to see as you cruise down the highway in Anytown, USA.
Zombies, on the other hand, are far less common, at least for people not tripping on acid, mushrooms or some other hallucinogenic drug.
Enter Jerimiah Clyde Hartline, a 19-year-old transient who apparently prefers to drive while under the influence of mind-altering substances. More on that in a moment.
Last weekend in Tennessee, Hartline got kicked out of the house and decided to hitch a ride on the first train out of town. Only he didn’t take a train; he hitched a ride with Daniel Martinez, a truck driver heading to California with an ass load of strawberries.
The trip was pretty uneventful until the pair arrived at an inspection site near Temecula, a small city in Riverside County, California. Martinez stepped out to do some paperwork and left his young passenger in the truck.
A few moments later, Hartline hopped into the driver’s seat, shifted the truck into gear and took off for no apparent reason. Officer Nate Baer—one of the officers on the scene later—believes it occurred because Hartline was “under the influence of a substance that caused him to hallucinate.”
Sounds reasonable enough to me, especially when you consider what happened next.
Hartline was cruising down the road—which I find very impressive since 18-wheelers are not easy to drive—when he suddenly lost control and began smashing into everything in sight.
First it was a Tacoma, which slammed into a 4Runner that in turn collided with a Mercedes. The driver of the 4Runner should be fine, but two of the Tacoma passengers were seriously injured and rushed to a local hospital.
Hartline’s next victims drove a Taurus and an Accord, respectively. And this time it was the Taurus people who were heading to the hospital.
Fortunately for everyone further down the freeway, the truck flipped over after impacting the Accord and could wreak no more havoc. Of course, that didn’t stop Hartline the Hallucinator, who crawled out, jumped into a nearby van and demanded its driver take him to some as-yet-unknown location.
Unfortunately—at least for Hartline—the driver would have nothing of it and instead restrained him until Baer and his fellow “boys in blue” arrived. And that’s when Baer learned the truth about what caused the accident, injured so many people and damaged so much property.
“He thought zombies were chasing him and clinging to the truck.”
I tell you what. Either Hartline has watched so many episodes of AMC’s hit show The Walking Dead that zombies have now become his reality, or the other thing is true.
He was just on some really good shit. Only it won’t seem so good when he’s behind bars. But Hartline will learn—and teach us all—a very valuable lesson: under no circumstances should you ever hallucinate and drive.
Seems like a no-brainer to me. And that’s exactly how I would describe poor Jerimiah Hartline, too.
Any chance the great and powerful Oz could hook him up scarecrow-style?
If you were to ask, I bet most people would say that class reunions—whether high school or college—were a waste of time. That’s generally what I hear anytime the subject is broached. And I have never heard anyone get excited at the prospect of attending, even in the case of five-year reunions, which to me seem close enough to graduation to still be fun.
I didn’t attend mine, of course, but that’s because (a) the person in charge of organizing the event “dropped the ball” or (b) the reunion got tossed in with some alumni event. And since I discard most of the mailings arriving from my alma maters (the majority of which involve fundraising, which is of no interest to a person with limited resources… I have to eat, after all)—I still don’t know the truth. Maybe I did miss the damn thing.
Anyway, I was recently invited to a reunion of sorts—it was actually a cookout during alumni weekend at the college where I work—and decided to really get into it, especially given my previous reunion misgivings. Sure, I never actually went to this school, much less graduated from it, but I certainly felt like an honorary graduate.
You see, I used to work—and party—with a lot of these folks. We waited tables together, bartended together or met up through mutual friends at “off-campus gatherings”—which is a nice way of saying that we did some crazy you-know-what when we were younger. I even work with some graduates now, since many alums return to campus in staff, faculty or administrative roles later. This means I know people who graduated in nearly every decade since the 1960s, not to mention grads from a good number of years throughout.
And since I myself was not a graduate—and it was in this context that most attendees would likely view each other (digging through their college memories to place names with faces)—I could travel relatively incognito. Some of my best friends would know me immediately. Former acquaintances would remember me vaguely, but hopefully in a positive way. And others wouldn’t know me at all… but I would probably know them.
It sounded like fun to me.
Prior to the cookout, I joined a Facebook page for the event and started monitoring it to see who was planning to come. Told you I was getting into it. On this page, I could also see who might attend, who might not, and who was too freaking lazy to respond to the one-click, yea-or-nay invitation they received.
Odd that people can find time to update their FB status, tell me about their latest bowel movement and how it resembled Justin Bieber with his old haircut, post pictures of the nasty meal they’re about to choke down and still miss an invitation to their class reunion. Some people’s priorities are so out-of-whack that I weep for the future.
It looked like a lot of my old friends were planning to come, so I found myself getting pretty excited and reminisced about some of the “trouble” we got into back in the day—I set off “trouble” because nothing we did was very serious, at least not from a legal perspective. Damn it. I’ve probably said too much already. Sorry, pals.
My Internet wanderings also led me on a search to see what other people thought about class reunions. I didn’t dig very deep, but the best I could find were surveys from 1961 asking people when their reunion should be held, or some such question.
Incidentally, the answer seems to be August or July, which apparently represent the national averages for reunion planning (21% and 23% respectively). I found that on my reunion search, too. Thanks, ReunionAnnouncements.com!
The day of the big cookout finally came and throughout the morning and afternoon, pictures of alumni on the local scene kept popping up on Facebook. There they were at a local restaurant, tossing back shots and trading stories about the old days. Or watching some athletic event, maybe one they played when they were here as students. Either way, it looked like plenty of people made the trip. And since the band playing the event also had connections to the college—the lead singer was a graduate, if I’m not mistaken—it promised to be a fun time for all.
And in many ways, it was.
I made it to the cookout in the late afternoon to find it pretty vacant, but steadily picking up. There was plenty of food and free beer to be had—and I took advantage of them both, in courteous moderation, of course—but being a staff member definitely put a damper on things, or so I thought initially.
Then I remembered that most of the attendees—myself included—were older, had kids and just couldn’t sustain a late-night throw-down anyway. Most of us could still drink effectively, mind you. Some things never change. We just couldn’t get hammered, get wild and get up the next morning with no regard for consequences.
A few people brought their families with them, for goodness sake.
So that was kind of a downer, but only in terms of making us all long for our lost youth. It was nice to remember some of the things we did, to address some of the drama we created and to get past old grudges and misunderstandings. Sure, there was still some bad blood here and there, but that’s certainly to be expected.
Another down side to class reunions that I hear people mention is all the judging and showboating that goes on as former classmates try to impress each other with their savvy business achievements… or ridicule the people with shorter, less impressive resumes, which probably happens more often. This may be true—as I said, I have very little frame of reference here. But that certainly wasn’t the case at this cookout reunion. In fact, I would have to say that the opposite was true.
For whatever reason, people I hadn’t seen in years—and even some I’d never met before—opened up their hearts and shared their personal stories and struggles with me. And I returned the “favor” by sharing a few of my own, which normally makes them feel a whole lot better. It was definitely nice and I had the opportunity to add a few new friends in the process. And not Facebook friends, either. Real friends in tangible reality.
What a novel concept!
Another upside to this great event—and one I would hesitate to mention if I possessed any sort of internal filter, which I don’t—were the beautiful young ladies in attendance. Yes, we had all aged a little and picked up a few pounds and wrinkles along the way. And yes, most would refer to us as middle-aged, a term I very much dislike at the start of my forty-second year, but I can live with that. And judging from some of the beautiful women I saw and spoke with, time had treated them just fine. Beauty is beauty at any age, right?
Of course, most (if not all) of them are married with loving husbands and beautiful kids, so the “hook ups” of the past are but a distant memory. Even if they weren’t, the parties die down around eight o’clock anyway. And though I really show my age when I say this, I don’t know anyone who can stay up past ten, at least not if they’re parents. There simply isn’t time to hook up anymore, and in some ways, it’s a real shame.
It’s probably a lot safer this way, no doubt, but it’s hardly more fun.
All in all, though, I have to admit that my first pseudo class reunion was fun, albeit it very laid-back. All the components for a good time were there: good food, fellowship, reminiscing, networking, activities for kids, music, beer and wine, a free taxi service. And it was a good time, despite ending so early and reminding us all that regardless of how fond our memories are, we can never go back to being the people we were back then.
Memories will just have to be enough.
If you’re a fan of the 1993 Tom Hanks-Meg Ryan “rom-com” Sleepless in Seattle, saw the title of this post and thought it might be referencing some impending sequel—albeit one with a rather misguided title—think again.
In what could easily classify as an homage to Mel Brooks‘ 1968 film The Producers—most specifically the line “if you’ve got it, flaunt it”—a woman in Portland was recently spotted on the corner of Clay Street and SW 7th Avenue panhandling topless.
Okay. She was wearing pasties over her nipples, but she still flashed her boobs for money. From what I understand, she earned some, too. And she didn’t even get arrested for it. You know why?
Because Oregon is awesome!
A person commits the crime of public indecency if, while in or in view of a public place, the person performs (a) an act of sexual intercourse; (b) an act of deviant sexual intercourse; or (c) an act exposing the genitals of the person with the intent of arousing the sexual desire of the person of another person.
That last one is the kicker. And it’s also one of the reasons I may have to eventually relocate to Oregon.
Showing your junk in public is obviously a no-no in Portland, but we all know that breasts are not genitals. And since the only part of the breast considered to be “arousing” is the nipple—at least in the eyes of the law—women are free to let it all hang out as long as their “nipular regions” are covered.
Pasties seem to do the trick. At least they did for this begging exhibitionist. What’s funny, though, is that in Portland, she didn’t even need them.
You see, Portland is one of the few cities in America where women are free to go completely topless… nipples and all. And no, it’s not because the city is male-dominated or populated by perverts.
It’s about freedom of expression, as well as gender equality.
The logic behind this wonderful law—and I fully support it, in case you didn’t notice—is that if men can walk around bare-chested, then women should be permitted to do the same.
And why not? Just the other day I found myself wishing there were more topless women in the grocery store. I just didn’t know said grocery store was in Portland!
The law also distinguishes between public breasts and sexy breasts, for lack of better terms. When a woman goes topless in public, it isn’t considered an act of sexuality; it’s an act of expression. And since we value freedom of expression so much in America, a topless woman in Portland is protected by the same laws that protect Marilyn Manson, white supremacists and anyone else who wants to express who they are or what they believe.
It breaks down like this: since exposed breasts in public are not sexual and are not genitals—and since both genders deserve equal treatment—Portland’s topless ordinance does not violate Oregon’s public indecency law.
All of this leaves me with one thing to say, and I mean this from the bottom of my heart: God bless America!
And God bless Portland for showing us that in the struggle for gender equality, even topless women can do their part!
Latishia McClure works at a Conoco gas station and convenience store in Kansas City, Missouri. As you might imagine, it isn’t the most stimulating job in the world, but things got much more exciting for McClure on Thursday.
While taking a break, McClure noticed a strange box sitting on top of one of the trash cans near the pumps. Since she had little else to do before returning to the tedium behind the counter, she decided to investigate. The box was relatively nondescript—a little crushed and bent in places—but it seemed pretty harmless.
Imagine her surprise when she opened the box, peeked inside and saw a pair of eyeballs staring back at her!
“It was freaky walking out there to that box,” McClure said later. “I saw white and strings of blood and knew it couldn’t be fake.”
McClure immediately called the cops, who started their investigation with the store’s surveillance video. Around 8:30 the night before, a blue Toyota with Nebraska plates pulled up to a pump and two men jumped out—one of them was holding the box.
The men tried to shove the box into the trash can, but it simply wouldn’t fit. So they did the only other thing they could do: they left it sitting on top, where McClure would discover it later.
And then they hauled ass. I’m not even sure they filled up before jetting.
I hate to think there’s a blind pig out there somewhere, bumping into the other pigs, missing out on slop. So sad.
Since there seemed to be no real crime committed—and since the only living creature to suffer was our sightless, porky friend—police have closed the investigation. It seems a little premature, if you ask me.
After all, there are still two wackos out there who get their jollies by transporting and abandoning pig eyes in public places. Shouldn’t that be cause for concern?
Whether or not it’s actually true, I have always considered myself to be a rather unique individual. And I can only assume most of you feel the same way about yourselves. At least I hope you do.
Of course, I am also a typical male in many ways, some positive and some negative. As such—and being such a devoted heterosexual—I enjoyed vivid sexual fantasies, especially during puberty. And there can be no fantasy greater than the one I assume most guys like me have enjoyed at one time or another: the fantasy of being invisible.
Not only that, but being invisible in the one place you are sure to see plenty of naked women: the girls’ locker room.
Bear in mind that I had this fantasy while I was also very young, so there shouldn’t be much of a creepy factor involved.
Or are they?
According to several physicists in Texas, the possibility of developing invisibility technology is slowly becoming a reality. And recent advances make invisibility much more possible in the future than ever before, which I for one find very exciting.
Now let’s see how effectively I can describe this new technology. I’m not much of a science guy, so please bear with me.
When we see something, what we’re actually seeing is the light bouncing off an object, entering our eyes, travelling to our brains and being interpreted there. And since light waves can be bent, refracted and reflected, invisibility technology would manipulate these waves so our eyes don’t pick up objects in space, rendering them invisible, at least in a virtual way.
It’s kind of like what magicians do with mirrors when they make things disappear, only with more of a scientific basis.
At the moment, physicists are limited in what they can make invisible and have focused on the manipulation of microwaves rather than light waves. However, this basic technology could someday morph into true invisibility, especially with regard to camouflage.
Scientists have even been working on an invisibility cloak. And no, they don’t moonlight as professors at Hogwart’s, either.
The most recent cloak is made of some kind of polycarbonate, much like the kind found in DVDs. It incorporates a tight, checkered pattern that neutralizes the light waves bouncing off of it, thus making it invisible to the human eye. Unfortunately, only very small objects can be rendered invisible at the moment, but this is definitely a step in the right direction.
As you might imagine, there are a number of ethical considerations to invisibility technology. We obviously can’t have a bunch of invisible people walking around, committing unseen crimes, fondling women on the street or otherwise wreaking havoc. And the implications for our military also raise some red flags. Just think how much damage an invisible tank or bomber could do to an enemy that can’t even see them.
Of course, none of this changes the fact that an invisibility cloak would also be perfect for that locker room fantasy I mentioned earlier. By the time one becomes available, though, I will either be that dirty old man or worse, I’ll be dead.
But I am keeping my fingers crossed and hope to see this technology developed in my lifetime. It didn’t seem possible before, but things are certainly looking up!