These pretzels are making me thirsty
Welcome to my weird little world. I don’t like talking about myself. Unless I’m crafting a detailed, vulnerable creative nonfiction story from my life, where I’ll pour out my soul to you. Then it’s okay.
My name really is Christopher Robin. My mother tells me I was named after two uncles — Chris and Robin. But I was born in the late 70s, so who’s bullshitting who, Mom?
Most of my work has a soundtrack. There’s one in my brain all the time anyway, so I feel like sharing it. There’s a lyrical or…
Mike Birbiglia is a successful indie comedy icon. Is he “indie?” Eh, who cares. I’m sure he doesn’t either. He’s an amazing artist, and I’m drawn to him because he’s a regular guy, but a legendary storyteller. His comedy specials sometimes take him years to craft. That’s what his podcast Working It Out is all about: how he works out his jokes.
Coming home from an Oktoberfest festival after swilling German beers from half-gallon jugs like backwoods mountain people, sometimes you get hungry. Years ago there were all-night buffets where all the drunks could stop and stuff their bellies and arteries with processed microwaved salty goodness.
On one of those trips I don’t remember, we stopped to grab some vittles. …
All this baloney self-help and how-to crap is exhausting. It’s no different than tuning into social media and seeing how great everyone else’s life is, then comparing your worthless life and feeling shitty about yourself. Gross.
Let me explain before I begin that I’m not angry. I teeter on the edge of electric anxiety most of the time I’m alive, and I’m wound pretty tight most of the time, but I’m not angry. I said I’M NOT ANGRY!!!
There are too many stories around here about getting your shit together. Self-help, money making, social-media toxic positivity. So I’m here to…
Let’s go for a ride
We all know what it’s like to check your stats obsessively and compulsively. It’s like having an itchy anus. You can’t help it. After you scratch it your finger usually stinks and you hate yourself.
(Is it itchy because you didn’t wipe properly because you hurt yourself jumping off your desk because an energy vampire wiped out your will to live?)
Anyway, fellow writers, the time has come. We have become slaves to the algorithm, and it is time for a revolution.
Viva la resistance! Or something.
We’ve all done it. We’ve poured our hearts out into pieces. Done research, drove ourselves nuts over the right phrasing, adjectives, etc.
And then — views are shit. It seems views are down all around, but admittedly my sample size of writers is relatively small. Or maybe I’m shit. That’s probably it. Yeah.
But shitty stats can be a good thing. Because now, you’re free do write what you want to write. Frankly, fuck it — let’s write.
Of course, I could be completely wrong, and likely am, because that’s usually the case. How about we take a walk.
We all know those people that are one-uppers.
“Oh your car has 240 horsepower? Mine has 260.”
Or, when trading a story from last weekend:
You: “Man, I was so drunk last night that I passed out on the bar…”
Them: “Dude that’s nothing! I went to jail last night, got out of jail, then started a bonfire on the mayor’s lawn and went back to jail!”
Let’s reverse the trend and start a new movement: How to be a one-downer. Let me show you how it’s done.
To start, you have to embrace your regularness. Don’t be shy about…
They feel like I need a drink
As if summer isn’t hard enough, autumn presents its own special challenges. Gone are the days of craving a cold beer by the pool. Those days are replaced by the autumn breeze the brings in the warm colors to contradict the cool weather. The ambers and reds of the leaves correspond with the ambers and reds of malty Octoberfest beers and dry red wines. Accompanied by chilly nights around the fire, the heat of a warm scotch beckons.
Tank tops and t-shirts are replaced by cozy sweaters and hoodies — they pair better…
At the beginning of the Sopranos, a New Jersey mob boss has a crisis. Some ducks move into the family swimming pool at his house, and he becomes attached to them.
He wades into the pool with his pajamas and bathrobe on with a loaf of bread. He builds them a ramp. He talks to them. He comes to rely on their presence.
Then one day they grow up and fly away, and his world falls apart.
Yesterday I helped my dad pack up the remaining few things from their house. The last thing to go was all the patio…
What speaks to me? I don’t know. Jesus? Nah, I quit listening to him decades ago. Did I ever?
Here at Counter Arts, we’ve tap-danced around what art means to all of us before, but this feels different. Most of us have an innate appreciation for art in some form simply because we’re human.
But, to be asked as yesnodunno did:
What is art to you? What makes you feel the deep tremors of your soul? What evokes the nightmares or sweet dreams? What fuels you? What speaks to you?
Well, shit. When you put it that way, of course…