Issue #127 – “Jackass” – March 24th, 2008

-I thought my buddy Brett summed me up quite eloquently when he recently said, “Karo, you’re a people person who hates people.”  It’s true.  I make a living interacting with others on stage and via email.  Yet the thought of talking to humans under any other circumstances is so repugnant to me that I even buy my toilet paper online rather than leave the house.  But I’ve realized that it’s only a small segment of the population that draws my ire, and in turn gives everyone else a bad name.  These people are known by a variety of monikers, though I think one is most appropriate: jackass.

-Guys, wearing only a V-neck undershirt to a bar is not acceptable.  Neither is sporting a blazer over said undershirt, unless you’re going for the “just went to the dry cleaners but only half my order was ready” look.

-Athletes, if your team scores an upset, don’t complain to the interviewer afterward that “Everyone doubted us.”  Of course everyone doubted you – you fucking sucked until just now!

-If you recently got stuck in unusually gridlocked traffic in San Diego, you can thank my friend Christina, who ran out of gas in the middle of the highway.  Sure she’s a doctor with two degrees from Georgetown, but that didn’t stop her from buying a car with a manual transmission – even though she doesn’t drive stick – just because the automatic didn’t come in the color she wanted.

-To be fair, here’s an example of my own jackassery: I once drunkenly threw a hundred-dollar bill at a cab driver in Vegas, which would have been bad enough had I not added, “Say hello to Benjamin McKenzie.”  I’m pretty sure I meant Benjamin Franklin – whose face is on the bill – and not the actor who played Ryan on “The OC.”

-And by the way, to my dear friends and family, I moved to LA almost three years ago.  Stop calling me at 10pm Eastern Time on Thursdays to ask what I thought about “Lost.”  I haven’t fucking seen it yet!

-As you know from Ruminations #122, I hate animals.  But I reserve a special vitriol for their owners.  I recently heard a guy bragging about how he takes his dog to the park, lets it run around without a leash, and then twenty minutes later the dog always returns to him at the same bench.  He finished this captivating tale by proclaiming, “Dogs are so much smarter than us!”  Not only is this guy a jackass, his dog is one too for not having the good sense to run away.

-In the end, I do believe that most people are generally good at heart.  Some are jackasses for reasons completely beyond their control (for instance, those fuckers with gleaming white, perfect teeth who never had braces).  Others are simply victims of a slip of the tongue, like Triplet #1, who once asked me, as we were standing in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium in downtown Los Angeles, if we were overlooking the “LA skyline.”  (My sarcastic response: “No, actually that’s San Francisco.  Jackass.”)  Still others change as a result of their situation, like my friend in law school who took six weeks to email me back a one-word response to a question because he was “so busy with finals.”  No one is that fucking busy.  Especially since all I really wanted to know was whether he’d seen “Lost.”

-As always, here are some random things I’ve been ruminating about lately…

-I kinda wanna bang the chick who cuts my hair.  I figure afterwards it wouldn’t be as awkward as if I’d hooked up with a co-worker or someone else I’d see much more frequently.  Then again, I definitely don’t want to upset her and leave our next appointment with a mohawk or, worse, less ear than I came in with.

-If you’re a college student who has just gotten back from Spring Break, you’re probably suffering from what I’ve coined the “Acapulco Flu.”  This occurs when you go on a hard-partying vacation where booze is substituted for sleep, arrive home, feel totally fine for a few days, and then about a week later wind up on your deathbed.  I speculate that for the first few days, the body itself still believes it’s on vacation and is running on adrenaline, which would explain both the delay before crashing as well as the unusual desire to drink out of a yard glass.

-I was at this bar in West Hollywood a few weeks ago and when I closed my tab, the bartender saw the name on my Amex and said, “Hey man, I love Ruminations.”  I responded, “Thanks dude,” and then added, “So, can I get a discount?”  He laughed, and I chuckled in kind, as he clearly didn’t realize I wasn’t kidding.

-The other day, I forgot to take my iPod to the gym and noticed that when I lift my maximum weight, I sometimes emit an involuntary whistle as I’m exhaling.  The worst part is that I don’t even know how to whistle normally, so not only am I annoying everyone else in the gym, I’m actually taunting myself.

-Yesterday I was talking to my developers about the new web site I’m launching in a few months.  As we were in the midst of discussing the layout of the site, I had an epiphany.  I want to open a bar called Scrollbar.  Get it?  Yeah, they didn’t either.

-On more than one occasion I’ve lured a girl back to my place to drink wine only to discover that I have absolutely no idea how to open the bottle.

-And, finally, nothing brings out your inner jackass like a never-ending game of reply-to-all with your buddies.  I don’t know what it is about guys, being bored at work, and email that brings out the worst in all of us.  It usually starts innocently enough.  A few days ago I sent an email to some friends asking for a bar recommendation.  The first response came from Triplet #1, who – and I’m quoting directly here – suggested “Club Loser on 32nd and Nothington.”  That was followed by an email from Chi who recommended the ever popular “Bar Blow Me on 69th and Your Mom Avenue.”  And those were the least offensive suggestions.  The conversation soon degraded into name-calling until someone inevitably dropped an F-bomb, everyone using their work accounts feigned outrage, and then appended their Gmail addresses to the chain so that they could follow the discussion uncensored on their BlackBerrys.  I never got any legitimate recommendations and the reply-to-all eventually petered out.  I thought about asking one more question to the group – “Did anyone see ‘Lost’ last night?” – but quickly reconsidered.  Fuck me.