Friday, March 25, 2011

Heeeelp, I'm in my 40s

The other day I was looking in the mirror and I had to ask myself, "What the hell happened to you?"
One day I was this young, vibrant, good looking stud - well, I was young anyway - and the next I was this balding guy with wrinkles and gray hair in his goatee.
The hair on my head is evacuating at an alarming rate.
The rapidly receding hairline, the pot belly and the grey hairs can mean only one thing ñ it is time to stop looking in the mirror.
It's funny how you come full circle, though. When I was a toddler, I was bald with a pot belly, but if I run around the house in just a diaper now, everyone freaks out. Go figure.
The calendar is also my enemy because it is a daily reminder that I am a full-blown, middle-aged guy, and I have the angst about how the first 40-something years of my life went to prove it.
I have talked with my wife about the fun a mid-life crisis will bring, but I am still debating exactly what action I should take to get the most out of the getting-old crisis that is materializing on the horizon.
Having an affair is completely out of the question, no matter what crisis I am going through. When I said, ìI do,î I did and that's all there is to it.
So, what other mid-life meltdowns do I have left available to me?
I could get a sports car, but with one kid entering college next year any money for a fancy car will likely be spent on educating Junior. Which is money well spent because if I don't, he could very likely be on my couch when he is 40 and starting a mid-life dilemma of his own.
So some short-term college pain is for my own long-term gain. However, it does mean I will have to scrub the sports car plan ñ forever ñ as there are two more spawn after the oldest one who will want to go on to post-secondary education, which means I will be cashing in bottles to pay for tuition for the next 10 years or so.
OK, so I will not be having an affair and the only sports car I will ever own will be from the Hot Wheels collection.
I already have a motorcycle so I can not even get one of those in an attempt to feel young. I have had motorcycles off and on since I was 13, so they have always been part of my life ñ young and old.
I have heard of several of my mid-life brethren who have gone out and bought a motorbike that was way too big and powerful for them ñ especially when you consider many had never had one before.
This led to their mid-life crisis being converted to a medical crisis due to some form of untimely dismount from their metal steed. In other words, they crashed the stupid thing because they had no idea what they were doing.
Well, at least all that road rash took their mind off getting old.
So, no affair, no sports car and I already have a bike. Hmmm, I am sensing my mid-life options are dwindling. There is always a complete nervous break down I suppose, but that sounds like a lot of work and at my age, I need my rest.
No affair, no sports car, no motorcycle option and a mental breakdown is more hassle than it's worth.
I guess I will have to sit back and see what happens.
However, if anyone has any suggestions I am all ears, but you will have to speak up because at my age, the hearing is not a good as it once was.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Who needs hair?

OK, what is the deal with hair.
Is it some cruel joke Father Time likes to play on people for his own personal amusement?
When you are born, odds are you had little to no hair on your head.
But it doesn't take long before your head is covered in this wonderful fluffy stuff known as hair.
During those first few years, hair can be more of a hassle than anything ñ for the parent anyway who has to try and keep Junior's hair clean after a hard day of playing in the dirt.
But as you enter the teen years, hair becomes an important part of your life. You wash it, condition it, comb it (a lot), dye it, style it, admire it...
There is just no end to the youthful enjoyment of a full head of hair.
Hair also starts to sprout on your legs and arms.
For most girls, this hair is light in both density and colour. Ladies can shave their legs and have skin as smooth as silk in a matter of minutes.
I would need a blow torch and weed-whacker to hack down the forest growing on my lower appendages. One wrong move could result in a medical emergency of the blood loss variety.
Many people keep their crown of locks well into their senior years, however, there are those fortunate few who get to experience balding at a young age. The chosen ones, I like to call them.
Yes, I am talking about yours truly. I started losing my hair when I was 20. By the time I was in my mid-20s, it was quite noticeable. In fact, my dad had more hair than I did.
I decided I might as well embrace my enhanced scalp and go bald gracefully.
No comb overs, no hair clubs and no growing it long in the back just to fool myself into thinking I still have a fountain of flowing follicles.
No, if I was going bald, - which I was ñ I was going to do it right. After much weeping and gnashing of teeth, I shaved my hair super short and decided that was probably the last hair style I would ever have.
But as the years progressed, I realized I was not actually losing hair ñ it was just relocating. I bet if I could count all the hair on my body, it would be exactly the same now as when I had a full head of hair because the hair on my head is simply sprouting up in other areas.
Why I need hair to grow out of the top of my shoulder I do not know. Not both shoulders, no, that would make way too much sense. Nope, I get to have hair growing out of my left shoulder only.
Why? I guess the answer could be why not.
Why do I need eyebrows that are bushy enough to hide a small immigrant family in? I don't, but my body thinks I do, so the older I get, the bushier the brows become.
While the shoulder locks are a mystery and the abundant eyebrows are kinda creepy, the hair growing out of my ears is utterly pointless.
I guess everyone has hair in their ears, but on most people it is not long enough to braid.
One year for Christmas, the Missus bought me a nose and ear trimmer ñ more as a practical joke than anything ñ but several years later I am putting that piece of battery operated gear through the paces on a regular basis ñ which is something she encourages actually.
I spend more time shaving my eyebrows, ears and shoulder than I do my face.
Come to think of it, Father Time is kind of a butthead.

football is boring

OK, I'll admit it.
I am saying it right here in black and white: I don't get what all the Super Bowl hoopla is about.
It is just a football game, sure it's a championship game, but still it is one single game.
I am even going to take things a little further and admit I am not a big football fan, not even Canadian football (but you probably already guessed that.)
There, I am out of the football closet as it were. I have watched football of course, and I find it just slightly more exciting than soccer.
I know, I just alienated both forms of football fans, but what can I tell ya, I just find both games a little on the slow side. And by a little, I mean a lot.
And why do they call football, football? I can understand why Europeans call their game of choice football, because you kick the ball with your foot ñ not too big of a stretch there.
But in the North American game, they spend most of the time carrying the ball. Maybe they should have called that soccer instead of stealing the name of another sport which can cause confusion among die-hard football fans (I'll let you decide what brand of football I am talking about because at this point, I am not too sure myself.)
I am glad basketball was invented by a Canadian.
Based on their creativity when it comes to naming sporting activities, had the Yanks invented basketball, they probably would have called it hockey.
But a good ol' Canuck decided the point of the game was to put a ball through a basket, and seeing as how football had already been taken ñ twice ñ he went with basketball.
Basketball is an exciting game, with lots of action, passing, shooting and super stars creating more drama than than those boneheads on Jersey Shore. It's kind of like a soap opera with a jock strap.
I will admit, there are a few exciting moments in football, but you have to sit through a lot of agnonizingly boring plays before there is that brief flurry of action.
Then it is back to huddles, some guy with the ball running a few feet before being tackled, then another huddle, then another short run, then another huddle...and so on and so forth.
Instead of spending a few precious hours of my life watching the game, I just tune in to a sports show at the end of the day and catch the highlights. Perfect. I can see everything worth seeing in about three minutes.
Which brings us back to the Super Bowl.
So much hype goes into one single game, you would think the second coming will happen at half time.
Advertisers spend millions of dollars for a singe commercial. Why? Because there will be millions of people worldwide watching the game. This year 111 million plunked down in front of a TV to watch the championship game of 'carrytheballî (what the game should have been called.)
Thanks to the wonders of the Interweb, I do not even have to watch the Super Bowl to see the commercials ñ which is typically the best part of game anyway. I can just go to Youtube and viola, there they are, free of all the pointless stuff ñ like the game itself.
I am sure right about now there are some die-hard football fans frothing at the mouth for such sacrilege and to them I say if you want to watch a real sporting event, catch a hockey game.
Fast, hard hitting and exciting with a play off that is not decided in a single game.
That way if your team has an off day, there is always game two to even the score.
Now if you'll excuse me I have to Youtube those commercials again.
Oh, and, can anyone tell me who won the game?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Weird is an understatement

Ladies and gentlemen, it is a strange world out there.
Need proof? Read the news. Even the best Hollywood writers could not come up with some of this stuff.
Real life ranges from the weird to the strange to the really weird.
The following lands in the really weird category.
It would seem a man in the United States awoke from an evening snooze to find his dog had eaten some of his toes.
Really, that's what the story said.
The man had diabetes and could not feel his feet and after taking a nap he noticed something was amiss, or more accurately - missing.
The family hound took it upon himself to apply his own version of medical care. Officials said if the toes were gangrenous or dying, the mutt thought he was doing his master a favour.
The dog will not face any repercussions for his actions as it was determined he was not doing it "in any form of meanness."
What's even weirder - as if it was not strange enough already - the man and his wife were quite happy with the pooch performing the in-house amputation.
The story did not say what kind of a dog it was, but I really hope it was not a chihuahua. How long would it take a dog that small to perform the impromptu surgery?
I don't know, and I don't want to know. Like I said, true and really weird.
Another odd little ditty is closer to home. As I am sure you have already heard, a Tim Horton's was used as an overflow for an emergency room in a B.C. hospital.
The comments have been flying fast and furious over this one.
"I will have a large double-double with a honey glazed and could you set my broken arm please? Thank you."
Only in Canada could a Timmies double as an emergency ward triage.
A lady in the United States filed a lawsuit against a railroad company after she was struck by a train. The woman was walking down the tracks when the train hit her.
The woman was not listening to an iPod or any other such device that would prevent her from hearing the massive locomotive barreling down the tracks behind her, and in the lawsuit, blamed the rail company for not posting enough signs stating the tracks were used by trains.
She also filing a lawsuit against her parents for bearing a child that is dumber than a twig.
I have my doubts she will emerge victorious against the railway company, but the lawsuit against her parents sounds like a lock.
What jury could possibly argue when all the proof they need is being documented in the earlier lawsuit.
In the northern wilds of Alaska a woman was attacked by a moose (she was not seriously injured.) Nothing strange about that, you say. I say guess again.
You see, Morty Moose was relaxing in a snowbank near a town when the lady decided to pet the humungous beast.
OK, let's review: the moose is a wild animal, a large wild animal and that makes it a dangerous wild animal.
I wonder if she is related to the train lady?
This next one is weird in a cool way. In the U.S, a 25-year-old scumbag broke into a home and attempted to assault the 71-year-old woman who lived there.
But this super senior was having none of that. Granny grabbed a frying pan and laid a whoopin' on the bad guy to the point where he needed medical care.
His police mugshot has him wearing a cervical collar from injuries inflicted on him by the feisty senior.
I say good job Granny, that's my kind of senior citizen.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

House full o' sickos

My wife has been a nurse for more than two decades.
She has been a mother for almost as long.
If you put the two together what do you get? Apparently, a house full of sick children.
I came home the other day from work to find my home had been invaded by a horde of youngsters ñ as it usually is. I have three kids of my own, but it is a rare day when it is just my own kids roaming my castle.
My home has become 'the house' where my kid's friends gather to hang out, play video games and eat everything that is edible, and a few things that aren't.
The difference this time was Junior's friends brought some friends of their own in the form of germs. They were infected with a very nasty cold, but that did not stop them from crashing at my house ñ it also did not slow down their eating, which I was kind of hoping it would because short of winning the lottery, buying all that extra food is going to put me in the poor house (where I am sure all those teens will follow in their nomadic quest for food.)
Anyway, as I pulled into the driveway, I was unaware of Germ-stock that was taking place in my basement.
I popped downstairs after a hard day in the salt mines ñ commonly known as my desk ñ to relax with my good friend, Mr. X-Box 360.
The electronic gaming wonder and me go back several years, and before that I was rather well acquainted with his distant cousin, Mr. Playstation.
Some people might say I am too old to be playing video games. I say poo-poo to you too. Mine is the first generation to play video games. From the adventures of that little yellow ball with the eating disorder, Pacman, to the amazing stuff they have today, I have lived the evolution of gaming.
And even though I am into the latter half of the f-years, I still enjoy grabbing a controller and smiting bad guys before they can take over the world.
But what does my gaming prowess have to do with the mini epidemic festering in my home? My infected son and two of his infected friends already had their grubby little paws on the controllers and you could almost see the germs crawling around, waiting for another victim to infect.
Once they were done their game, I grabbed one of the controllers covered it with a very liberal dose of hand sanitizer and went about saving the world yet again.
This time the enemy had a secret weapon ñ three secret weapons actually ñ in the form of a trio of teenage boys who sat behind me, watching me play while they gacked, hacked, coughed and snorted more snot than an elephant with a head cold.
I tried to concentrate on the game, but the noise from the peanut gallery was far too distracting and I decided to forgo saving the universe in favour of saving myself from having to listen to the snot fest that was taking place in the basement.
I asked my wife why there were two additional ill young men in my basement, and she basically said her mother and nursing instincts kicked in and she decided it was better for them to stay at our house where she could look after them and make sure they got rest and medicine. Besides, they were already there.
Kind of hard to argue with that seeing as we had already agreed to be 'the house,' so I resigned myself to the fact my home had been turned into an infirmary for the criminally snotty.
Of course, a few days later I was the one with the runny nose, hacking cough and general feeling of ickyness.
The cold was brutal and seriously knocked the wind out of my sales for almost two weeks, but because the teen crew was afraid of catching the cold again, they left the room every time I wanted to play the X-Box.
I guess there is a silver lining to every dark cloud.