You’re waiting in line for… well, anything. Waiting in and of itself is awful, you don’t need me to provide a specific location to make this scenario more dire, but I’m going to anyway.
Let’s say you’re on line at Target. You just had a nice experience buying crap you don’t need at prices you can’t possibly imagine were this low. Now, you’ve made the mistake you always make–you’ve picked the wrong line. It’s a Saturday, it’s busy, so of course the store only has lines 1, 3, 67 and 72 open. 1 and 3 are about a quarter mile down the road, so you picked 67 because the line appeared to be shortest.
Naturally, that was a short-sighted selection as every single person in front of you has a million items, coupons, out-of-date gift cards and basically every other form of delay known to mankind is taking place in front of you.
Then, a gift from the heavens arrives.
No, not the manager coming to your lane. That’s just a sign of further delay.
It’s the woman standing in front of you (or fella, whatever). She’s gorgeous, she’s not listening to music, she doesn’t have a ring, she’s not with anybody.
This isn’t a club, you’re not even necessarily looking to score in any way—be it a number or, you know.
But, now, at THE VERY LEAST, you have someone to make snide comments with.
Don’t pretend you’d rather share those with the dude in the Star Wars shirt behind you.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling? Thinking you’re in with this girl/guy, getting the courage up to ask for a number or even say, “You know, we should hang out some time!” and then getting flat out rejected or having the line suddenly move so fast you run out of time.
This is a tough one to really visualize and enjoy at this exact second, seeing as how it’s absolutely, soul-crushingly cold and bleak out and will continue to be for the better part of the next two months, where in we only get a reprieve in the form of a slightly less-shitty few months before the three good weeks of weather this area of the world is granted per year.
OK, anyway. Point is, it’s cold. It’s not exactly what you’d call “ice-cream weather.”
But, you’re a goddamned liar if you’re telling me that, even in this cold, if you heard that familiar diddy (turns out, like most things from our country’s past, it has wildly racist origins) you wouldn’t turn on a dime to look for that fucking truck.
I’ve never even been a huge fan of ice cream (partial, of course, to sour candy), but I don’t think there’s a time or a place where that propaganda music won’t change my course. It’s like I’m sort of a Manchurian candidate and the only thing that will unlock me and begin my journey is that tune.
It reminds me of summer, of being a kid, of being thrilled with having three or four dollars in my pocket. It’s a great association to have with, ostensibly, a sweaty dude in a white truck.
The Polar Opposite of this Feeling: Finding out they don’t have the good soft-serve ice cream and/or are out of the Sonic the Hedgehog bar.
Wait, you mean you’re not supposed to gluttonously take all of the soap, shampoo, coffee filters, towels, linens, sheets, pillows, televisions and shower curtains that you can stuff into your suitcases?
I was under the impression that going to a hotel room was like a 48-72 hour-long version of Supermarket Sweep. “Whatever you can fit, you keep”, I believe, is the motto for one of the Hilton chains. Not sure which.
Assuming you’re not a goody-goody who has never taken a thing from a hotel room, you’ll know this feeling.
I’ll admit that in honesty, I don’t just take shit to take it. However, if I’m in a hotel and the shampoo is amazing… that shit’s coming home with me. And hell, I’ll ask for more from the room service just so I can take that shit too. I’m a real thug when it comes to looting hotel bathrooms.
There’s also shower caps, conditioner (it’s honestly cheaper for me to go to a hotel once ever few months than buy conditioner on its own), bar soap (long live bar soap, BTW) and other shower accompaniments that are just begging to be taken.
Do them a favor. Bring ’em home.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Having one of those shampoo/conditioner bottles explode in your bag on the ride home.
Just over a week ago, I bought stuff online. I hadn’t planned to. I typically don’t. But, I was having lunch with a friend–a savvy shopper in her own right–who suggested that if there was anything online I was looking to buy, now would be the right time.
It turns out, Cyber Monday is a real thing.
I wound up buying a pair of headphones (for $80 down from $200) and then 7 separate articles of clothing (for a combined total of $160) all in the matter of a few hours.
I have yet to receive all of these items and, of course as is the case with most shopping, I didn’t absolutely need any of them… but simply the idea that I was able to buy them all for so (so, so, so) much cheaper than they originally cost made it all the sweeter.
In fact, even as I use these various things, I don’t think the joy I’ll get out of them at any single time will equal the joy of knowing how good of a deal I got.
The super-sized version of this feeling is when it’s not a massive deal, when it’s something relatively (or very) exclusive. Obviously, everyone’s in on Cyber Monday. But when you (somehow) get a good deal on a car or know someone somewhere who hooks you up in a way most people aren’t, that’s the real winner.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Thinking you got the deal of a lifetime on, say, a car, only to find out that a friend got a way better deal than you. And you’ve already made your purchase.
This one is pretty self-explanatory, I think.
Let’s be fair, it’s so engrained in culture at this point that the scent has literally been packaged as it’s own air freshener—which by the way doesn’t do the real smell justice and is just a tease, if you ask me.
The reason we like the new car smell is, in my opinion, two fold… One, we’re all cheap whores for that leathery smell for some reason. Like the need to eat to continue life, the scent of leather drives us all forward for one reason or another. Two, it implies you just bought or leased or borrowed or rented a new car… which has its whole separate and obvious list of good feelings.
I wouldn’t recommend buying the air freshener.
Just buy the car.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Having that odor in your car you not only can’t get out (windows open, full-scale cleaning, etc.) but can’t identify.
There’s something about the peeling off of drenched workout clothes that brings with it a satisfaction hard to describe.
It’s basically the only tangible proof that you, in fact, just worked out in either a strenuous fashion or a gym with no temperature regulation.
You’re not yet sore so you don’t feel bad. You’re still riding high on endorphins or dopamine or whatever the fuck it is that keeps you from not jumping into oncoming traffic and you’re about to hop into the shower and get on with your life.
But before you do, you slide that shirt off and marvel at how hard you—yes, you!—were able to work that this shirt has basically been reduced to a thick puddle. Good for me, you think, I should be some sort of an Olympian the way this shirt is so fully drenched. Did I go swimming in my clothes and not tell anyone? I am impressive.
And on an obvious note, there’s the simple fact that you get to take off what is otherwise disgusting and uncomfortable clothing in favor of warm, normal clothes.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling? : The start of every single workout, ever.
Tonight, I was at a Nets game.
Don’t worry about why I was at a Nets game or how sad my life has gotten that I, indeed, found it to be a good way to spend my time to go to Brooklyn to watch Sean Kilpatrick and Isaiah Whitehead get starter’s minutes… I was there, that’s all you need to know.
Point is, once the game was over, my friend and I sat in our seats for a while as the rest of the crowd filed out. We had no where to go, so we waited for the traffic to die down.
Then, I heard this:
“Is that fucking Scott Spinelli?”
The answer was, of course, “Why yes, dear fellow.”
All jokes aside, it was a kid I’m friends with from growing up and high school that–completely randomly–also had nothing better to do on a Thursday night than watch the Nets play live and in person.
We’re not best friends in the whole wide world, we don’t text every day… but seeing him was a fun surprise. The three of us hung out for a while after the game, shooting the shit and it was all by random chance. Had we simply left earlier or sat somewhere else, no dice.
In a crowded place, to see someone you recognize somehow makes the whole place more familiar. Like it’s always been your little cove.
Polar Opposite of This Feeling?: Thinking someone is someone else and being wrong, or waving at a person you do know and having that person either not see you or ignore you.
We’re all on our grind, hustling to make an extra buck.
Whatever your extra hustle, it’s a pretty nice feeling to look through that pound of junk mail and see that legal envelope you’ve been waiting for.
The funniest thing about this feeling is that, more often than not, the work you’re doing on the side is never for that much money. It’s rarely a huge commitment, rarely something that’s entirely worth it. You are doing fine and could, honestly, live without the money.
You’re not moving into an extra income bracket because of that once-a-month check that comes maybe 5-7 months a year. Even when it’s not a check (say, from umpiring baseball games or babysitting), the point remains.
But there’s validation in two places in this feeling: the extra hard work that you know you put in which makes you feel like you’re a better person than you actually are… and the fact that you can now justify having spent $140 at the bar last night.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Thinking you no longer need the money because you’re just that much of a baller, only to realize you’re not after those first few checks don’t come.
This one sadly excludes my New Jersey brethren. And, I suppose, my Oregon thugs. I see you! (Although, not really, but you gangsters still hold it down.)
While we’re sitting comfortably in our car, not having to get out in the cold weather or do a damn thing, the rest of you fucking losers have to pump your own gas, like peasants.
However, in what can only be figured as cosmic payback for not having the amazing fortune of living in Jersey or Oregon, you do get to experience this feeling every so often.
I went to school in Syracuse, so for a portion of my life, I pumped my own gas. Now, obviously, in this day and age wherein credit cards are used so frequently, the thrill of this perfect pump is limited. Hell, if this post was written in 1997, it may have been a top 50 feeling.
Still, there is something to be said for the satisfaction of landing RIGHT on the whole number. Seeing the three zeroes in your total, knowing you landed right on it. There’s no real losers here, but there certainly are winners.
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Being from New Jersey and getting gas outside of it for the first time in a while, you sit in your car when you get to the station for a good 2-3 minutes before you realize—no one is coming to help you.
This one is super vague, I recognize that, but stay with me for a sec.
My friends and I, when we were actually friends and would do normal things like go out for food or drinks regularly, would play this game of trying to guess the exact total of the bill. Only once in the game’s history was it ever guessed properly. My friend Chris got it, nailed the exact total, and if I may speak for him, I’d have to imagine it was and continues to be his proudest moment.
I suppose it’s worth pointing out the following: he’s a husband to a lovely wife, father to two wonderful daughters, a homeowner and does something that I’d imagine people are impressed by in the finance world.
Still, we all know he’s the only one to have won the game. Hell, he never lets us forget. So really, all this begs the question: considering that quite clearly it’s the best thing he’s ever done… how is this just #218?
Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: I’m not sure there is one here. There’s absolutely no embarrassment in getting it wrong. I guess I can use this space to say that the feeling is, obviously, correlated to the randomness of getting it right. It, of course, being a bill total, the number of fingers behind your back, how many shots Russell Westbrook took last night… the lower chance you have of getting it right, the better the feeling is when you do.