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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

A Big Fat Fistful of Snark

Well, folks, today’s post is gonna be a little edgier than usual, I’m afraid. I’ve got some piddly little shit to complain about, and that’s just what I’m gonna do. I’ve got a whole handful of issues giving me grief right now, and I’m gonna tick ’em off on the fingers of one hand, one by one by snarly, snarky one.

So if you’re all about the sunshine and the singing and happy fricking little rainbows… well, you’re not gonna like this one much. Or maybe you will — maybe I can find a way to make my petty bitching entertaining. Hey, there’s only one way to find out, right? So settle in, and check out my ‘Five Fingers Worth of Fucking Foolishness That Are Fouling Up My Fucking Mood‘.

(Catchy title, no? I’m gonna see if I can get that on a T-shirt, I think. A, um, really wide T-shirt, or maybe a towel. A beach blanket? Whatever.)

Anyway, get out your umbrellas, people — it’s about to get pissy around here.

One — the Pissy Pinky Finger:

Well, this one’s short, if not at all sweet. I actually started this post, and only had four things to bitch about. That’s before I wrote half of it, and had Internet Explorer unexpectedly close down on me, thus dumping my (not-so-)precious words, and about two hours of time, right down the shitter.

And so, I say — fucking again — thank you, MicroSoft, for screwing me with one of your half-assed, bug-ridden, nausea-inducing products. If the (misguided) people at work didn’t use IE, I can guarantee you I wouldn’t even have the damned thing on this laptop. And I’d probably run Linux on it, too, you lousy freaking codetards.

Where do I want to go today?

To Bill Gates’ grotesquely ostentatious palatial fucking compound in Redmond, or wherever the hell that asshole lives, so I can break my damned foot off in his ass. That’s where I want to go today. And I’m so glad you asked. Weenies.

Two — the Riled-Up Ring Finger:

All day, I’ve been wearing a shirt around with ‘shoulder nipples’ on it. You know, those little humps you get on shirts when they’re on the hanger all wrong? Well, this one’s got it bad — they’re like friggin’ horns sitting beside my neck. I keep catching one of them in the corner of my vision, and thinking there’s some… thing sitting on my shoulder. What would be there, I don’t know — but I’ve got a lot of scary ideas. Like, an enormous bug, or some small rodent. Like a squirrel, maybe, or a rabid chihuahua. Or an enormous pile of bird shit. Honestly, I can think of oodles of things that these little bumpy puckers could be, and not one damned one of them is good.

(Heh. ‘Bumpy puckers’. That just sounds dirty, doesn’t it? Now there’s a phrase you could have a field day with in limericks. Hee.)

All right, where was I? Oh, these little damned shirt bubbles. Right.

So, of course, when I catch a glimpse of one of these bastards, I wig out, because I’m imagining that the scorpion, or gerbil, or fruit bat, or whatever the hell my brain has explained it as, is about to get me. So I try to get it first, and whoop and flail and smack myself in the ear, and nearly knock myself backwards trying to shoo these things off my shoulder.

(It’s all highly entertaining, as my wife can tell you. Who’s friggin’ side is she on, anyway? Mine, or the fruit bats’? Damn.)

Anyway, in my more lucid and less paranoid moments, I’ve tried to get rid of these shoulder nipple thingies. But it’s impossible — I’ve poked at ’em, and stretched ’em out, and rubbed them down… I even tried licking one, to see whether that would do anything useful.

(In other words, I did just about everything I do to those other nipples, when I get the chance. Which is less often than it used to be. I’m guessing the stretching has something to do with that, but I’m not sure. I’ll get back to you.)

So there they sit, unvanquished. Short of washing the damned shirt, I don’t see any way to ‘denipplify’ my shoulders. And while I always thought that having an extra pair of nipples would be a big bucket of ‘woo hoo!‘, these little nippers are doing me no good at all. Even the licking thing didn’t help me any. I just got a mouthful of shirt fuzz. Guh.

I’m thinking of just going into the bathroom, jumping into the shower — with the shirt on — and letting the water run over me until these puffy little puckery bastards fall into line. Sure, I’d be soaking wet — and you might see my nipples showing through the shirt — but at least I wouldn’t keep slapping myself in the damned head all the time. Well, no more than usual, anyway. If you’ve been reading this shit for any length of time, then you probably know that there’s an awful lot of head-slapping going on around here, even on a ‘normal’ day. I don’t need any friggin’ more. Bitches.

Three — the Mad-As-Hell Middle Finger:

One of my favorite ways to pointlessly waste enormous amounts of time with no real prospect of any significant reward pastimes is playing fantasy sports.

(For those of you who’ve been shackled to a radiator in a basement for the last few years, fantasy sports allows people like me with no athletic skill to live vicariously through professional athletes by drafting a team of baseballers, or footballers, or basketballers — and, more recently, golfballers, um… hockeyballers, and, er… racecardriverballers? — and tracking their progress throughout the season. Then we get together with other fat, old, jealous fools trying to recapture their lost youth sports fans in a league, and pretend that we know more than the other people involved. That’s fantasy sports in a nutshell.

And by the way — what the hell were you doing shackled to a radiator, anyway? Unless you live in ‘Neverland’, that shit’s just weird, man. Messed up.)

Anyway, I have devoted copious numbers of hours to fantasy sports. I’ve crunched numbers, projected performances, invented constants, and charted trends. I’ve built spreadsheets and databases and programs all dedicated to one single purpose: get the stats, analyze the stats, and spit out the names of the people who are going to kick ass next year, or week, or game, or whatever. Many Charlie-hours — we’re well into the Charlie-months territory here — have been spent deciding just exactly how to craft and manage and hone my fantasy teams.

And you know what?

I suck.

Okay, that’s not completely fair. I can hold my own in baseball and basketball — I’ve even won a couple of league championships.

(Yeah, and that and a creased-up dollar bill will get a stripper to shake her cootchie in my face.

How was that one? I thought I’d try that one out. Any good? No? Eh.)

Anyway, I’m okay in those sports — I win some, I lose some, and I like to think that the former is due to my diligence and superior analytical skills, while the former occurs only because of unexpected injuries, not having access to the information I want, or dirty, stinking cheating by other players. That’s what I like to think.

But now my world has been rocked. My upsides are down; my turvys are topsy. You see, I am absolutely lousy at fantasy football. I finish in one of two places — either dead fricking last, or in the topmost spot that doesn’t qualify for the playoffs. That’s it — in six years, that’s where I’ve been, and frankly, I can’t say which is worse. Both of them suck large, hairy, pimply ass-cheeks. And none of my analysis has ever been able to change that.

Until this year. This year, I’ve been distracted by this whole blogging thing. (Hey, you’ve gotta have priorities, right?) So this year, I signed up for a team, and did nothing. Nada. Squat. Bupkis. I even missed my draft — the software auto-drafted a couple of decent players, and some real stinkers, based on the default player rankings. I didn’t even change those defaults — I mean, I did nothing, people. No planning, no analysis, and no thinking whatsoever.

But I didn’t want the team to go completely to waste, so here’s what I did do — every Wednesday, when ESPN posts their ‘expert analysis’ of who’s gonna do well that week, I followed it. To the letter. If that meant picking up a new player, or dropping guys off the team, then that’s what I did. I mindlessly followed the advice, no matter how asshatted it seemed. I followed their hunches, and theories, and plain old guesses. A few of them worked out. A lot of them didn’t.

But you know what, dammit? I won. I won, and won, and kept on winning, not only making the playoffs, but winning the first round game! My ’empty-headed drone’ routine, where I said ‘yes, sir!‘ to each and every one of the pigskin prognosticators’ suggestions, got me where hard work and diligence and creative analysis couldn’t. Or didn’t, at least. And won’t ever again — how the hell could I go back to doing all that work now?

So I’m left with two stupid options — continue to play, and put zero thought into it (because you just know that if I ever ventured away from a pick, that’s when the guy would score fourteen touchdowns in one stupid fucking game), or just quit altogether. Either way, I’m admitting the one thing that no fantasy player ever wants to say: the ‘experts’ are smarter than I am.

Ugh! That hurt to even write it. The whole point of fantasy sports is to prove that you know more — more than the experts, more than the other people in your league, more than everybody. And now I know that I don’t. It’s a sad, sad day, indeed. I don’t even know me any more, man.

Four — the Irate Index Finger:

Okay, I really wasn’t gonna do this. Honestly, I wasn’t. I wasn’t going to be poopy about my blog review from the Weblog Reviewespecially after they were nice enough to send me an Amazon gift certificate for being a contest winner! — but you know… I just can’t help it. It’s been one of those kinds of days. Bear with me — it’ll all be over soon.

So, about the review. I have to admit that I’m not as upset about it as Jeff apparently was. But I do appreciate him going to bat for me — on his own site — to say that he thought I deserved a higher rating. (And I appreciate the Procrastinatrix, too, for a similar comment on Jeff’s post.) It’s touching — it really is. I had no idea that people would care so much! You guys kick ass!

But my beef isn’t really about the score, per se. Everybody’s got their own tastes — hell, some people even listen to country music, or watch soap operas. Some kooks wear lederhosen, for Chrissakes! When it’s not Oktoberfest! What’s up with that?

So it obviously takes all kinds. Some people would think my site’s a ‘one’.

(And many do, based on the ‘Reader’s Ratings’ listed for this blog on the Weblog Review site.)

I’ve got no problem with that. My issue is this — based on what I read in the review, I don’t feel like the reviewer really spent much time here. I feel like I got a bit of a ‘drive-by rating’, rather than the in-depth, probing assessment I was hoping for.

(Hey, I’m always in the mood for some ‘in-depth probing’. What can I say? I’m romantic and shit that way.)

Anyway, based on the review, I’m not sure what to think. The reviewer said a lot of nice things, and I do appreciate that. On the other hand, there were no negative comments, and while I sort of appreciate that, too, it makes me wonder what the rating was based on. A little constructive criticism would have been nice.

At the same time, the reviewer really didn’t say a lot, if you really read the review. I try to do things a little differently around here than most other blogs, and I’m not sure the reviewer really dug in far enough to notice. (Hey, if some goober searching for ‘Stripperella naked‘ doesn’t ‘dig in’ very far, that’s one thing. I suppose I was just hoping for a little more from a dedicated reviewer.) Good or bad, it would have been nice to see that the links to my standup sets, and my one hundred posts rather than things, and the LinkFilter extras, didn’t go completely unnoticed. I’m kinda proud of some of that stuff.

(And some… uh, less so. Still!)

So I’d have appreciated a ‘yea’ or ‘nay’ or something about those things. Something — ‘love it!‘, ‘hate it!‘, ‘put on some damned pants!‘ — just, you know… something.

So I think I’ll wait a couple of months, and then ask for another review. Hey, maybe I’ll even pay for a review next time — those get done faster, and maybe that’ll get me more than one person’s perspective. That’s all I want, folks — the more opinions, the better. And don’t forget — all of you guys are reviewers, too, and the most important ones, as far as I’m concerned. If there’s something you want to see — you know, short of naked piccys of me, or my wife, or me and my wife — lemme know. I’ll do what I can to deliver — help me help you. I’m just here for you, you know.

(Oh, and if you want nude snaps of the dog, I think I can help you there. We’ve got whole photo albums of those, and they’re very tastefully done. Well, most of them. The set with the edible undies did get a little risque… and come to think of it, the ‘money shot’ closeups in the ‘black teddy’ series were a bit graphic. But still — there are plenty of others. We can work something out.)

Five — the Thavagely Thour Thumb:

Well… you know, I had this big bitchy rant all ready to end this thing, all about what a pain in the ass our Christmas is every year, with the travel and the planes and the driving and the crippling exhaustion… but all that changed a little while ago. The whole flavor of this Christmas break changed — I won’t get into why, but let’s just say that the rant seems… inappropriate now.

(And not in the usual way — I’m all about being inappropriate in the usual way… but this is a little different. It just wouldn’t feel right. I wouldn’t mention it at all, but I’ve got nothing left for the ‘thumb’, to finish out this post. At the same time, I still have very mixed feelings about Christmas — I’m just not gonna bitch about them right now.

Still, I didn’t want you to think that I’d suddenly been permanently de-Grinchified. I’m sure I’ll eventually prove that theory wrong for you. So it’s certainly not the case that my heart suddenly ‘grew three sizes’, or anything like that.

Hey, if anything is gonna grow three fricking sizes, my heart isn’t gonna be on the top of the list, if you know what I’m sayin’.

What? Why’re you looking at me like that? I have a small pancreas. My pancreas! What did you think I meant?

Oh, nice. Very funny. Ho ho friggin’ ho. Bite me.)

So, I’ll just say this — the wife and I do have to get up at — or stay up until — four in the morning to catch a six am flight. And then we’ll spend a week shuttling between two cities that are two hours away from each other, trying to see everyone and do everything that’s expected of us. And finally, we’ll fly home, exhausted and battered, in dire need of a real vacation. The schedule gets us every time.

But this time, I’ll be able to tell you about it, as it happens! So look for ‘updates from the road’ over the next week, and cut me a little slack if I miss a day here and there. I’m gonna try to stick to my ‘post every day, whether I need to or not’ policy, but ‘net access at our respective parents’ houses is spotty sometimes. So I’ll do my best. And be certain — absolutely rock-solid sure — that whatever I’m doing, I’d rather be blogging. Much rather.

And now, I’m gonna go pack my bag. Man, four in the morning is gonna get here in a hurry. Damn.

Permalink  |  9 Comments

9 Responses to “A Big Fat Fistful of Snark”

  1. Jon says:

    Your review was a bit lacking.. but who cares what they think? It’s your readers who count in the end. Not some reviewer.

    Just my 2 pence.

  2. Jeff A says:

    Hmm, well I don’t want nude pics of you or the wife. But if ya got some of Bea Aurthur maybe we could talk. Hell I’ll trade ya a pic of John Cleeses butt, of course I guess anyone can get that with a screen grab but with mine you won’t have to go to all that effort now would you?

    And now an assortement of quotes from Python:

    Tennis anyone?

    This is an EX-parrot

    is your wife a goer? nudge nudge wink wink

    Did you know theres a penguin on your telly?

  3. Riri says:

    I can’t wait for the “Rant from the In-Laws'”. Hang in there Charlie and try to have a good Christmas anyway! Cheers!

  4. Joe says:

    Hey Charlie…I completely agree with you on two points.

    1) The shoulder nipples…I’ve been battling those something fierce over the past few weeks and just this week resolved to…gasp…FOLD my sweaters! I know it sucks, but those nipples (didn’t realize they had a name) were pissing me off too! (You must have superb peripheral vision though, because mine only bugged me when seeing them in the mirror.)

    B) Fantasy sports…congrats on your victories so far. I really only play fantasy football and have been pretty successful the past two years and got out to a solid start this year. Unfortunately, I proceeded to lose my last three games and not make the playoffs. I may just have to subscribe to your little theory next year and will be sure to let you know how it goes.

    Safe travels!

  5. Riri says:

    One more thing : Give that Middle finger to IE from me!

  6. Andy says:

    I think everyone has wanted to go give Bill Gates a piece of their…mind…every now and then. You, as usual, managed to put our collective thoughts so eloquently.

    Buy a mac

  7. nefarious says:

    OK, here’s the summary version:

    1) Microsoft hater

    2) Shirt licker

    3) Dumber than sports analyst

    4) Into bestiality

    5) Grinchy bastard

    Does that about sum it up?

    ps.. I think the ‘reader reviews’ are WAY off… I simply attribute it to a rapid spreading of crack smoking amongst online users. It’s well documented. No, really.

  8. tj says:

    i dunno … i got a “5” on my review. not to rub it in or anything. i mean, that would be rude to parade around saying “i got a 5 and you didn’t … nyah nyah nyah”. so i will, under NO circumstances be doing that. k? k.

    as for shoulder nipples, you need the new shoulder-bra by the makers of crelm toothpaste. the shoulder-bra keeps those unsightly shoulder nipples hidden from site. available in red lace and blue satin.

  9. Belle says:

    You may not appreciate this but ur post actually made me feel much better. Someone has more to rant about than me!!

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