#51 – Getting an Unexpected Peek

hqdefaultThe story I’m about to share is one of my classics. All of it is true, despite the fact that it will sound wholly embellished and as if it was a major plot line in a Revenge of the Nerds sequel.

Summer after freshman year of college, a friend and I got jobs at Domino’s Pizza as delivery men. We would work for (maybe) three hours a day doing the lunch “rush” in our small radius of towns in Northern New Jersey.

The way the system was set up–so as to not display favoritism to higher tipping areas–a call would come in, the order would be placed and a computer that, as I think of it must’ve still been running MS-DOS, would link up the next driver in the cue to that order. And so it randomly went, on and on.

One midsummer’s day, my friend got an delivery and shortly after, I received mine. We left at around the same time. By the time I came back, I had this story for him.

I parked my car in the driveway of a monstrously sized house on what was easily the hottest day of the summer to date. Following strict Domino’s protocol, I went up to the door and rang the bell. No answer. Tried again, still, no answer.

Then, just as I was about to return to my car–a white, 1997 Geo Prizm–to call the house number, I heard a voice shout from what I perceived to be the backyard: “We’re back here!”

Figuring I had nothing to lose outside of possible intrusion on someone’s private life, I goofily headed behind the house. I use that qualifier because I think it’s important to point out, once again, that I was delivering for Domino’s, and in that shallow, tan hat and those shirts and that cargo short I was wearing, it’s impossible to be anything less than a full-on member of the fucking Goof Troop.

As I rounded the corner, I saw not one, not two, not three… but between five and seven completely topless women. All of them were relatively in shape and all of them were at least my age or older (likely older).

I think I only got between two to three milliseconds of staring in before I was “caught”, at which point they “shrieked” in horror and all covered up. The ringleader of this fucking fiasco pointed to the pinned wad of money underneath a folding chair she’d been previously tanning on, so I could collect my money.

I use quotes around those words because I have a strong suspicion I was setup. What joy they got out of it, I’ll never know. Frankly, I never got to enjoy it and even if I had more time, I probably would’ve looked away or just freaked out and said something stupid and awkward. I can’t be expected—hell, no one can be expected—to be delivering pizzas like a doofus, then suddenly get hit with naked women as a shocker and react cool and calm.

But yeah… who calls for delivery and then goes out suntanning nude no more than 20 minutes after making the call? This is Domino’s, brah. We didn’t fuck around.

Either way, then you also pin the EXACT (they were terrible tippers, but I guess they figured the show was the true reward?) amount you want to pay under a chair outside? Doesn’t add up.

Point is… you need to be prepared for the peek. I wasn’t, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great feeling.

Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Getting caught? I’m not sure what to put here, because the whole idea is that it’s not some sort of disgusting, peeping-Tom thing to begin with. But getting caught sounds right.

#124 – Accurately Guessing Between Pants and Shorts

pofgucu0is1couhI’d honestly guess that over the course of my whole adult life, I’m probably coming in at around .500 when it comes to the decision of Pants vs Shorts. I have no empirical proof that this is the case or that it’s a bad percentage, I just know anecdotally that it’s true… and that’s enough for me.

For point of reference, I’m pretty sure I’m hitting about .200 when it comes to picking the right line at the supermarket, so in this area I’m doing alright.

Either way… it’s late May (maybe even early June, if you’re feeling frisky) and you’re going out for the night. You haven’t left your apartment all day and while it looks pretty warm outside (and feels it in your apartment… though that could be because the walls are paper thin and the insulation is terrible), you truly have no idea if pants or shorts are the right play.

On the one hand, you know that eternally you look better in pants. God didn’t give you legs like that so you could show them off. On the other hand, sweating like a crazy person in the crotch/ass area while at a bar that will likely be crowded isn’t a good idea either. Then again, do you want your bare skin touching anything in that bar? Has a woman ever gone home with a man wearing shorts? Are cargo shorts really out of style? Why?

Seriously, why?

It’s a conundrum wrapped inside a riddle baked inside of a pregunta. No one wins.

Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: I mean, come on. Getting it wrong.

#118 – An Enormous Sweatshirt

c022a62c5c8bd3dc31b91f308036bf20This is one of the few feelings I’m writing that, I’m going to guess, a woman enjoys just a bit more than a man. The reason for that is simple: it’s not nearly as weird or uncommon for a man to comfortably rock a baggy sweatshirt in every day life. Women obviously do it, but the freeing relief of not having to wear tight fitting shit has to be greater for women. It just has to.

Evidence of this is based both in actual observation of society, but in my real-life dealings with the opposite sex. Twice, I’ve had baggy articles of sweat clothing swiped from my apartment by women I was dating. A pair of sweatpants and two sweatshirts, all in the name of love or simply being too cold, were given away without regard. All are no longer in my possession.

Side note: I’d love to live in a world where it wasn’t completely Tom Petty to ask for that shit back. But, alas, that is not the case.

The baggy sweatshirt feeling is simply one of comfort. Comfort in your own skin, comfort of the material, comfort of knowing that you don’t look your best and you don’t give a fuck, comfort in knowing you’re likely doing something very non-stressful at the moment.

For me, I refuse (at least as of this writing…) to get with the whole tight, fitted sweatshirt/pant movement. Joggers, I believe the pant version is called. That’s a serious Captain Nay-hab from me.

Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: The first time your new sweatpant/shirt comes out of the wash and the inside is starting to pill up and has lost that new feeling. Fuck.

#239 – Cracking Your Knuckles

maxresdefaultMy grandmother is somewhere reading this right now, shaking her damn head.

There were a few things I did that she despised: one was anything even remotely hinting at the fact we may not be as Jewish as we pretended and another was cracking my knuckles. She also hated tattoos. I’ve stayed away from one of those three.

Akin to this feeling, it’s only good in the beginning. After that, it starts to feel too routine, this rote motion that you’re somehow vaguely aware may actually be hurting and not helping you.

But that first one of the day? When you get you’re whole hand to pop? It’s freeing in a way, frankly, that’s hard to describe.

As a side note, you know what’s also fun? Cracking someone else‘s knuckles when they’ve either never done it (Jackpot!) or rarely ever do. That surprised look of horror/abject fear that comes over their face is priceless.

Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Trying, desperately, to crack your back and being unable to get to whatever that spot is. You even consider, briefly, getting someone in the room to do that bear hug thing with you. True desperation.

#175 – Unwrapping a Gift When You Have No Idea What It Is

This is a very, very specific reference but if you’ve seen Liar, Liar, you know what I’m referring to.

Either way, that excitement Max has as he fiendishly unwraps a gift is a feeling most adults, typically, don’t get to experience that often. First off, we generally just ask for things and get them. Second, people don’t tend to wrap gifts up (or as elaborately) as they did for me as when I was a kid. Lastly, I’ve been numbed to excitement and only feel alive, maybe, twice a year.

But that fevered ripping of wrapping paper, that box that’s of generic size and weight giving away nothing of its contents… that unknown is such an exciting feeling.

Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Of course, more often than not, you open the box and it’s clothes that don’t fit or you’d never wear or something you never asked for in the first place because your Uncle is fucking terrible at getting gifts.

#93 – Doing Something that Elicits the Response “Nice Hands”

dm_150623_guy_catches_foul_ball_with_baby_at_cubs1137This may exclusively or largely be a male feeling, but anyone that’s ever really played a sport of any kind knows what the hell I’m talking about here.

What’s important to note is that this extends beyond any playing field of any kind. Of course, the “Nice hands!” likely originated there, but for this feeling we’re specifically talking post-playing days.

A friend at work throws you a pen and you’re not immediately looking, but you catch it anyway… You accidentally knock over a jar of something and snatch it before it hits the floor… You drop your phone as you take it out of your pocket but quickly grab it before it smashes on the desk…

These are only a few of the possible situations we’re talking about here, but fact remains you just made a fucking play. You didn’t do it on purpose, you totally reacted naturally and you averted some sort of disaster (anything from that piece of food hitting the floor to that thing hitting the ground and smashing).

Often times you know you made a nice grab, but what makes it special is when someone else recognizes it.

“Nice hands!” they’ll shout at you.

You’re goddamned right, you’ll think.

The Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: When you try to do it on purpose and then fuck it up anyway. Meaning, you try to get slick and do some cute shit with a bottle of beer or whatever, and then drop it because you’re not Tom Cruise in Cocktail.

#195 – Your DVR Working

23-6567-comcast-problemsThat I even thought of this as a feeling at all is probably more telling of the fact that I should change cable providers than it is of anything else.

I record very few things. In fact, outside of the random show here or there, basically the only thing I record is Seinfeld. I want five episodes on my DVR at all times. I want the ability and convenience to watch one of these episodes whenever I choose.

For this other-worldly service, I pay ten dollars a month and I expect it work.

I don’t keep track of how often it doesn’t, but it suffices to say it’s often enough that I cherish when it’s working properly. I don’t do a rain dance or say a prayer each time I click play on a Seinfeld episode and it works, but I go into each interaction with my DVR braced for the worst.

When it comes up my way, I smile and sit back and enjoy 22 minutes of blissful entertainment.

The Polar Opposite of the Feeling?: Any part whatsoever of the process of calling your cable company—from them telling you to take the obvious steps you’ve already taken to keeping you on hold to setting up a potential time window for you to quit your job so they can come to your apartment/home.

#58 – An Amazing Movie Trailer

Try to go to a place in your mind where you don’t know that this movie wound up being a general disappointment. Now, watch this shit right and try not to get amped.

Many who know me are aware of my fanboy tendencies when it comes to the Joker. Any time he makes an appearance, I’m down. So, it should come as no surprise that when I heard about the Suicide Squad movie and the Joker’s involvement, I was excited. That excitement was only further amplified after watching this trailer.

Like most great trailers, there were a few commonalities… creepy/catch music, the general hint of a plot, one-liners and, most importantly, saving the best and most memorable elements for last.

Sure, this movie didn’t quite live up to the hype. But then again, in the world of first, second, third and fourth trailers each at least two minutes long, what in the hell does any longer?

Doesn’t take away from how amped I was after seeing this one.

The Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: Having to purposely avoid future trailers because you are trying to temper expectations knowing you’ve duped too many times before.

#135 – Getting the Last Person to Make Your Group Whole


Yay. Fun.

You’re out at the bar with a few friends… let’s say four of you in total. You’re having a good time, drinks and appetizers and whatever else have been ordered. The conversation is flowing and fun… but there’s something missing.

Perhaps your girl/boyfriend hasn’t yet showed up yet. Maybe the person you really set this get together up for in the first place has yet to arrive. Maybe there’s a Mets game on and you want to chop it up with that one buddy of yours that’s a Yankees fan to rub it in his face.

There’s a ton of possible scenarios here, but I think you get my point.

You’re having fun, no doubt, but when that last person arrives… buckle the fuck up, because it’s about to get great. I’m not necessarily (though this person could fill that role) talking about the guy who gets the party started!

It could simply be the funny cousin you never get to see but was looking forward to most, or the girl from work that you have a thing for or that high school buddy you really just click with.

When they show up, it’s fucking on.

The Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: When you thought you were the life of the party, only to be replaced by the person this feeling is talking about.

#158 – Finishing a TV Show You Binge Watched

160825174405-narcos-large-169For me, honestly it’s a relief to be done.

There’s a ton of shows–frankly too many for me to get into–that I simply have put off watching because I know how I am with this sort of thing. I know I’ll get hooked, I’ll lose all sense of time and space just to squeeze more episodes in and whatever free time I had will be dedicated to finishing the show as quickly as possible–sometimes just for the sake of finishing and not as much enjoying.

Recently, I finished Narcos. I’m not going to say much about the show aside from the fact that I loved it and that Pablo Escobar was on a whole ‘nother fucking level. Dude made mobsters like the ones DeNiro and Pesci have played look like total sissies.

That said, this second season was only 10 episodes–not an enormous time commitment by any stretch–but being done brought me joy on two fronts.

First and most obviously, I was able to see how the season wrapped up and gain some closure of some sort. Second, as I’ve mentioned, I was able to rejoin the living and pick up my life where I’d left it several days before when I began my binge.

It gets so all-encompassing that, in this instance, I was beginning to think of things to say in Spanish and wishing more shows were subtitled.

The Polar Opposite of this Feeling?: When you’re really into a new show (ahem, Public Morals on TNT) and they take it off the air before it reaches its natural conclusion.