28 November 2012

How to Text

Apparently something called 'texting' is the new big thing that all the young kids are doing these days. To text you type a short message into your phone, and seemingly magically that same message appears on someone else's phone. Often the recipient is the one you intended, and often it is not. I don't know, it seems to be pretty random to me. Sometimes I'll get a text that says "Dave, can you pick me up? XOXO Mon." and I'll think to myself, "Who is Dave? I am David. Who could this possibly be referring to? And what's up with all the Xs and Os? Are we playing tic-tac-toe here? I do not know a Mon. Why does he/she assume that Dave will pick them up? Mon didn't even claify his/her location. What, is Dave supposed to just drive around using Apple Maps looking for Mon? Obviously not intended for me.
Or consider the text that came to me surprisingly on Sunday, "R U cming 2 the Church mtg this morning? Cani get a ride?" Once again, no idea why I got this. There was no clarity on who it was intended for, or who it was from. Probably it was Mon again, looking for a ride from Dave. Maybe Dave owns a taxi service? Beats me. Now I am hip enough to know that "R U cming 2" must be some sort of abbreviated form of writing. After sounding it out loud for 3 full minutes, the closest interpretation I can come up with is "Rude Awakening 2." It's probably in reference to a sequel to the not yet released "Rude Awakening 1," featuring Val Kilmer as an alarm clock, Nicholas Cage as the bed, and the Tinman as the nocturnal sleeper. Based on my inferences, I am forced to believe I was being invited to the director's screening of Rude Awakening 2 being shown at the Church. After some Google searches I've concluded 'mtg' has to be short for 'mitigate,' which doesn't seem to go with anything else included in the text. Man this is difficult! By this point I've easily spent 2 hours, about 27 Google Searches, and spent upwards of $40 on spy/intepretation equipment all trying to decipher this blasted message from someone I don't even know, presumabely Mon who I also don't know! At least the 'get a ride' part was easily understood. The last word I was trying to fit into the sequence of mitigate and Rude Awakening 2, is 'Cani.' Short for canoli? California? Carney spelled wrong, and shortened? Candy spelled wrong and shortenend? Morgan spelled wrong and shortened? There really is no possible way I could ever figure out what 'Cani' is.
Eventually I just sent a text message to the person in my phone labeled "My Sister," explaining the whole situation to her with full, real sentences. Apparently you can only send a certain number of characters in a text message, and seeing as my message was the equivalent length of 4 Chinese scrolls, she was a little annoyed that I used her monthly allotment in one afternoon just to explain about some movie she didn't even  want to see. Yep, it's going to take a lot of convincing to get me to try 'texting' again. For now I'll just stick with my tweets. Those are so much easier to deal with.

11 November 2012

My First Nephew

My Sister is having a baby this week. Yep, a real, live human baby boy. She and her husband have decided to keep the name more secretive than a nuclear code soaked in beet juice being guarded by a moose-riding-Chuck-Norris, so don't ask that question of me. As I've begun pondering what it will be like once Felix the Fetus arrives- my first nephew- I've had to do some real soul searching about my responsibilities. During the birthing I know I will be primarily responsible for updating Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Four Square; My account ("It's a boy!"), my sister's account ("GET ME A COKE!"), the hospital's account (Cutest baby in hospital's history born today!"), the OB/GYNs account ("I wish I'd checked pizzas instead of babies on the application question 'When I grow up I want to deliver _______'"), and Neff the Newborn's account ("DC? I could have sworn I requested Washington STATE."). On second thought, I think I just fulfilled those responsibilities. It's after Felix arrives that I'm worried about my heavy but delightful burden.
First off, I know I will be in charge of his motorcycling education. I just know it. I haven't officially been asked about it yet, but since neither my sister nor her husband ride I can just sense they want to ask me to rear their first-born in the ways of motoring. I don't know what's taken them so long to ask me (I bet they're nervous) but I have a feeling it will be sometime before Thanksgiving.
In anticipation of the invitation I have started a training plan. I've already built a car seat that can attach to the back of Stella using a very complex system made entirely of rubber bands and dominoes. In a word, it's brilliant. In two words, it's insanely brilliant. If you give me three, they'd be powercord, insanely, brilliant. I will take Burt the baby for long, windy, rides on the back of Stella so he gets a feel for the wind on his binkey. Once his gets a little bigger I rigged a mechanism wherein he will ride on the handlebars of Stella, attached exclusively by recycled lanyards and bic pen caps. As he progresses in size we will move him up to the side car. Once his little legs are long enough to reach the gear shift (this is moved by the left foot) I will put him in the Moby Wrap strapped to my left leg and offer him the chance to determine what gear we are riding in. This would be a big responsibility and one that I would never allow him to operate until he is at least 19 months old.
When Turk the Tween is old enough to illegally drive a motorcycle I will let him drive mine. This time I will have to contort my body into the rubber band/domino apparatus and our roles will be reversed. Just like a roll baking in the oven, they will need to be flipped. Similar to turning the attendance roll over at a school, so will be our states. We will analogously be as if we were on fire-stopping, dropping and then rolling, but with an emphasis on step 3 of 3. To prepare my body to fit into a device made for a newborn I play Twister online every night before flossing, eating dinner, brushing, and eating six Snickers, in that order. A routine is how I stay in shape. Twister online is a whole different game than the Twister I grew up with. But back to Tsek the Teen. When Tsek is old enough to drive an airplane, we will procure a motorcycle for him. And then my training will be complete.
I am really excited to have nephew. I'm more excited to have a wife, but for now a nephew is good. And a shoutout to my Sister and her husband- If you need a name, please see above for several suggestions.

07 November 2012

The Election of 2012

It's very risky writing, posting, tweeting, saying, signing, messaging, discussing, or opining politics in a public domain such as a blog, so I'm going to tread lightly, as though I were walking on a bed of soggy kale. I've seen what happens when people post to Facebook- friends defriended, children disavowed, husbands divorced, dogs dead, and Picassos stolen- all because of a difference of opinions.
I have voted in three presidential elections now, once in Massachusetts, once in abstentia in Massachusetts, and now once in Virginia. My Virginia experience on Tuesday was the greatest and coldest of them all. Virginia is a battleground state and it attracts many voters to the polls. I rushed home from work and headed straight for my polling place- Firestation 10. I've always wondered how you could vote in a school or some other institution without an actual pole- it's just unfitting to be a pollster anyplace removed from an actual pole. But I digress. I waited out in the cold for one hour. Cars honked, enthusiasts encouraged, the cold continued, pollsters gave us our rights, sample ballots were distributed, I listened to music, took pictures of the line length, considered talking to the girl directly in front of me, considered talking to the girl directly behind me, considered talking to the girl two bodies behind me, but thought it rude to the girl directly behind me, read from my book, pondered how all these people could live so close to me and we could still be totally unaware of each other, considered a White House with a Mormon in it, considered another term for Obama, thought about when I first heard of Obama while visiting Chicago in 2004, thought about Democracy, wondered how to appropriately use terms like "Republic" and "Democracy" without infringing on party bias, wondered what it was going to be like once I made it in to the firestation, pondered on what I would say if I ran into a basketball buddy who lives in my neighborhood since our entire relationship is based on only one thing- basketball- which neither of us would be doing if we saw each other, pontificated on the awkwardness of seeing a friend twenty people back that I wanted to talk to, and knew I'd be close to for an hour, and yet not being able to for fear of losing my place in line, thought about dating and marriage, wished I'd been a more informed voter on issues other than the Presidential and Senatorial races, struggled with my political identity, wondered what chances the Independent congressman had against a 21 year incumbent in my district, thought about his mother-in-law who gave me a flyer encouraging me to vote for him, saw his picture and wondered how his biracial marriage was affecting his life, thought about the leaves changing and where they were going once snow hit, and then BAM: I was in the fire station 10, right by the pole.