Monday, December 17, 2007

My Athlete's Better Than Yours

I've been working in the sports department of an Erie newspaper for a couple of months now, and it's a pretty great job. I've always loved sports, and all I do here is watch, talk and document things that pertain to sporting events. It's great.

Since working here, though, I've been re-exposed to something that I'd hoped I would never have to deal with again, at least not anytime soon.

This would be the overbearing and clinically insane parent of a youth or high school athlete.

If you've been around sports as long as I have, or even for just a short amount of time, you know exactly who I'm talking about: the guardian who, for some reason or another, believes that their child is better than any other kid in the school, county, state or country, and that they should be treated accordingly.

Every once in a while, a parent will call into the paper and ask a question about why their child wasn't considered this, or not selected for that.

For instance, last week the paper ran a fall sports photo album in their weekly high school sports section, called Varsity. It just consisted of some of the more memorable pictures of kids from the year: a girl wearing street clothes and a knee brace performing for her school's colorguard, a kid crying after getting spanked in the football state playoffs, a group of morbidly obese high school football linemen screaming with shaved heads and faces painted like Mel Gibson's in Braveheart,and I guess a few others that I would actually want to look at sometime. (Sidenote: I did not have anything to do with selecting these pictures of fat, flag-waving, or blubbering children.) Parents have written letters to the sports editors pissed out of their minds and ranting like they're Bill O'Reilly at a U2 concert because their children were not included in a five page long photo album.

It really annoys me, the way that these parents seem to believe that even though "their little Ronnie" is short, fat, slow and white (characteristics they apparently cannot see), he will someday make it to the big leagues, and they will ride his coattails to wealth health and happiness, and then they will be their to mourn with him when he meets his downfall after a long and drawn out rape, murder, assault, drug or steroid abuse case.

This will, no doubt happen. These kids are going to be big time, but a paper in Erie might jeopardize that if they don't include the budding star in a newspaper photo album that, quite honestly, nobody gives a fucking peg leg about except the people that are in it and like, there families. It's not that big of a deal to have your picture in the paper. Maybe your grandma will call, or your History teacher will hang it in the bulletin board towards the back of the room right next to his map of Greenland, but it's not going to do you any good.

A couple of the guys I work with were discussing it just this evening at work, and one of them said, "You know what's weird about this? These people are adults. I mean, grow up," he said. "I'd understand if maybe a kid wrote us something, but you never hear from the kids."

Maybe because most of them don't get too hung up about it. Maybe because you don't get blown for having your picture in the paper dribbling a ball. Kids have more important things to worry about, like the next dance or that Saturday night when they can smuggle three of their dad's beers to their room and watch reruns of South Park until the sun comes up.

I've known kids that have had parents who were so worried about their athletics that it kind of messed up their lives. I was friends with a guy whose father had him transfer to a different public high school because of his basketball career. He got busted--because this is an illegal thing to do--and he had to sit out a year. This kid may have been a long shot division I recruit, but when he returned the following year he played terribly. Now he plays at a school that has one of the worst division II basketball teams I have ever lain eyes on.

Other kids have had fathers that held them back a year in school, so that they could have that extra year as an advantage for sports reasons. These same kind of guys will try and coach their kids any time that they can, and they preach a me-first attitude that doesn't really help them with what will actually get them recognition in the first place: winning.

Sports are awesome, and I love them. They're such a great passtime, and I spent a great deal of my life playing them, especially basketball. I wanted to win, and I liked having my picture in the paper, but never once did my parents get angry whenever someone else on my team got their action shot in over me, and neither did I. It was, and never really should be, about that.

And it shouldn't be about your parents. The worst thing for many of these kids may be that their parents are running their lives, and they will continue to forever. If they put your sporting career on such a high pedestal and attempt to intervene in it with such vigor, what will happen when it ends? They'll do the same with your professional career (which probably won't have anything to do with a sport), and they'll try to control you forever.

Whenever I got to college last year and fell under the tutelage of a coach that was kind of like a facist dictator, I stopped having fun. (I wasn't allowed to wear earrings or have my hair semi- long or express myself in any personal manner, and that was just off of the court. I still, to this day, don't know what his deal is/was.) I was very fortunate, because when I discussed "retiring" with my parents they were understanding and allowed it to be exclusively my decision. When I did definitely decide to leave the sport in a competitive sense, it was hard because I've always loved winning, and it was difficult to comprehend why it wasn't fun anymore. I realized after a while that I was lucky to have had fun the entire time I was in high school, because a lot of kids are pressured so heavily by their overly proud nutcase parents that it's difficult to even have any fun as a child.

It's not fair to a kid to have a parent that badgers them about sports all the time, and it's not fair to the people who cover sports to get letters concerning the lack of coverage their kid or team is getting. If it's deserved, it will come, I think.

So, next time you see a soccer mom with a cooler full of human growth hormone, whey protein, and a phone book with a list of agents, set her straight.

In high school, it's just a game. Not a media circus, and it should be viewed that way.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Subliminal Christmas Movie Messages

Every year I get extremely excited about the holidays. Towards the end of November, I start to get a little bit giddy about them, actually. I'm not the only one either. It's always been noticeable to me that around the time of Christmas, people are happier and good deeds seem to become more commonplace.

A big contributor to my ever-enhancing Christmas spirit are a number of classic Christmas movies. The first one to come to mind, obviously, is A Christmas Story, which is my favorite. Hands down. When it starts playing everyday on TBS, you know that Christmas is coming.

I could go on for days about that particular movie, but I've got no issues with it. It's kind of like how I could speak lovingly about Jessica Alba's looks for days on end, but I would rather take stabs at Drew Barrymore's acting abilities. There's just more to talk about.

Anyway, a couple of nights ago I was sitting in my apartment watching another one of my favorite Christmas movies. The old version of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, the version in which the characters are made of clay or something and move around like they've been stricken with a horrible case of osteoporosis.

I hadn't seen the film for a couple of years, (I had been slacking. It'd been replaced in my life by watching the O.C. Chrismukkah episodes over and over again.) and was absolutely shocked when I watched it.

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer is an apalling movie. With the exclusion of Remember the Titans and American History X, it's got the most outwardly discriminatory plot line ever.

Now, I know the song outlines how Rudolph was an outcast and stuff, and the whole story was kind of a "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" kind of deal, but the movie just takes it to an unneccessary level.

The movie begins in a cave where Rudolph has just been born. His parents notice (after an uncharacteristically long time, I thought, since a red blinking nose is pretty fucking noticeable) that he's got a very uncommon deformity. His dad is immediately pissed about it. I found this odd, but just figured he was a little unsettled that his son had a blinking nose, and that he might end up gay or something. His dad came off as pretty alpha-male, even though he hung out with dudes named Dancer and Prancer and had the ability to fly.

Things really got weird whenever Santa came in, though. Here's this guy that is supposed to be the face of charity and a deity to children telling a guy that his kid has no chance of succeeding in anything because he has a red nose. To put this into human perspective, it'd be like Vince Lombardi coming into your home two minutes after your birth and telling your father that you'll never start at quarterback or do anything significant because you have a cleft chin.

Santa threatened that Rudolph would never make the sleigh-team if he didn't grow out of having a red nose. I was mortified.

So, as so many do when their offspring are different, the parents tried to hide Rudolph's nose. And, as so often happens, a girl got him to reveal his different attributes (on accident, this time).

Rudolph's girl (I can't recall her name for the life of me) says that he's cute, so then he starts flying around, and he does a better job than any of the other kids. After this he's rubbing antlers or something with his friend, Fireball, and his black nose cover comes off, revealing his bright and shiny red nose to everyone. He is immediately shunned by everyone. Sidenote: This is arguably one of the most subtlely weird parts of the movie. Fireball is the first person to persecute Rudolph about his nose which is strange. First of all Fireball is a terrible terrible name, and you'd think he'd get made fun of a lot for that. Even worse, the reindeer dubbed Fireball has a patch of blonde hair on top of his head between his antlers. That's just as weird among reindeer as having a fucking red nose!

So after all of this, Santa has to come up to Rudolph's parents and be a huge dick again. He talks about how Rudolph could've been a great member of the sleigh team, but now that is nothing but a dream since he's got one little deformity (which I haven't stated before, I don't even think it is a deformity. A red nose is pretty cool if you think about it, though I guess I wouldn't want one).

Most of you know how the story goes. Rudolph ventures out on his own, bonds with some other misfits (on that island, and he hangs out with the elf that wants to be a dentist) who are really not that bad but have been shunned by society.

Then, finally, the guy that's been shit on by reindeer society for his entire life helps to save his family and his broad with the help of the elf-dentist and (my favorite character) Yukon Cornelius. They do all of this in insane conditions. They must outsmart a tenacious abominable snow man and escape back to Santa's neighborhood. All of this happens during a snow storm that is threatening to cancel Christmas.

Then, when Rudolph returns, Santa--who has been a colossal asshole this entire story--asks him to guide his sleigh because of his red nose. The red nose that he has been ridiculed over since the day he was born.

Now, if you take it at face value, this seems like an okay concept. The loser gets to save the day and also get the girl, and he gains everyone's respect and admiration. Rudolph opts to be the "bigger man" and save Christmas, helping Santa and his minions to avoid criticism from children the world around.

But, I urge you to look at it from another standpoint. This film sends out a bad message to kids. It basically tells them that it's fine and dandy to take shit from people, and then when you have a chance to impress them and gain their admiration, you should jump at it.

It's like getting a swirly once a week from the class bully but then gaining his admiration when you break the nerdy kids glasses at recess when you frogsplash him from the monkey bars, instead of befriending the nerd and refusing to do what everyone else feels is right.

If I'd have been Rudolph, I would have said, "Fuck you people."

Because really, in that terribly vain fictional world he was living in, getting the toys out promptly on Christmas Eve should've been the least of their worries.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Is Reality TV That Great?

For the majority of my life, reality television has been a significant entity in the entertainment industry. The Real World, I believe, was the catalyst for all of this, and then when Survivor came out, it garnered more mainstream buzz for the budding genre. From there it has sky-rocketed, as millions of people world wide sit down every night to watch a show consisting of people that seem to be just like them that are given the chances to participate in privileged and unorthodox programs. Some of these are just people seemingly living their everyday lives while a crew of cameramen follow them everywhere.

Countless Americans regularly view reality TV programs,or at least I assume so since more and more keep debuting. So many have come out in the decade since their conception that it would take me an entire month to list them all.

Personally, I don't watch reality TV as much as probably the normal twenty year old, which I believe can be attributed slightly to the fact that I'm male (most of the shows marketed for my age group are directed towards women) but I've watched enough to form an opinion that there are a few problems with the shows, and these all interlock with one another.

Firstly, most reality TV shows are not, in essence, real. They're skewed so that they look as real as possible, but it doesn't take an honor roll student to recognize that a great deal of the situations that participants in these shows face are at least partially--if not completely--scripted.

Producers of MTV's The Real World have been under fire about this issue for years, and finally admitted that they would set up certain scenarios for the cast members to act out while they're on the show. This is something that was rather obvious, since younger people can watch the show and immediately realize that either all of these people are mentally insane in some way, or just totally irrational, and do not act the way that normal teenagers or college kids act.

I admit, I've pretty much stopped watching MTV, because they've become a reality TV network and are not at all clandestine about it. A station that is called Music Television shouldn't be cutting videos short on Total Request Live so that they can show a program that consists of eight potentially bi-curious men sitting in a bus waiting to get their crack at some d-list actress. Justin Timberlake is pissed about this, and rightly so. I am too. We agree on some things, like my previous statement and the belief that Jessica Biel should not be thrown out of bed for eating crackers. Ever.

Think about it. If I'd just come to this country from Iceland and was browsing my new digital cable set-up to get a peek at the new Spice Girls video that I'd been hearing so much about, I'd be mildly unsettled to come upon a show with an Asian woman who can't decide if she's gay, straight or bisexual. This absolutely has to be fixed. Who would want to try and marry a girl that didn't even know if she liked dudes or chicks and was experimenting with both while you knew about it? The most disconcerting concept of this show is it's name, Tila Tequila, which is supposedly the name of the sexually confused star. Tequila is not an Asian surname.

The shows on MTV that really bother me are Laguna Beach and it's equally popular spin-off, The Hills. The producers of these shows have admitted that they are not all truly non-fiction, that some of it is scripted and even re-shot. I don't enjoy reality television, but if I'm going to watch it, I want it to be what I'm told it is. I could watch the OC all day with no qualms at all, because I know that it's not billed as being based on real events, so I can become absorbed in it without sitting there and wondering whether or not the scene I saw actually happened (plus I'm weird and genuinely enjoy the show).

At first, whenever MTV started to be overrun with reality shows, one could switch to VH1. Then came Flavor of Love, I Love New York, and Rock of Love. I'll admit, I've watched a few episodes of these, and it took me a while before I became totally convinced that they were at least a little bit fake. I watched a few episodes of Rock of Love, but the ship really sailed for me whenever my friend's told me that Bret Michaels had attempted to become a polygamist in the series finale.

I do dig the show about Scott Baeo being a lifetime bachelor, though.

So, to put this all to an end, I'll revert back to my previous statements: I do not dig reality television. I watch TV to escape from reality, so the last thing I want to do is look at someone else's reality, especially if it's an exaggerated one.

Maybe I'll go back to just watching cartoons.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

I'd Go Gay for Tom Brady

Something has dawned on me tonight as I sit in my room and watch the New England Patriots take on the Indianapolis Colts: Tom Brady can do no wrong. This is an observation that has been floating around the back of my head for quite some time now, but I've fought it for the simple reason that I'm supposed to hate his team since I live in Pittsburgh and cheer for the Steelers (whose quarterback is, in my opinion, considerably less alluring than Brady. Or Jake Plummer for that matter.)

Think about it, it's a very logical thing to come by. Brady is one of those guys who has pulled himself up by his bootstraps, which is something every wannabe alpha male dreams to boast about one day. Sure, he was a starting quarterback at the prestigious University of Michigan, but he wasn't drafted by the Patriots until the sixth round of the draft, as the 199th overall selection. This was in 2000, when the Browns picked Courtney Brown first overall and the Redskins took LaVar Arrington second. As far as I know, neither one of these players is even playing in the league anymore, let alone leading their respective teams to numerous championships and undefeated seasons.

They both graduated from Penn State know how I feel about that.

The first quarterback taken in this draft was Chad Pennington. I think the Jets would much rather have Brady at this point.

So, Brady has come from being a sixth round draft pick that would probably spend his entire short-lived career on the practice squad, driving a Ford Taurus and being recognized only by people who confused him for a Gucci model they saw in Vanity Fair to arguably the best quarterback of the past decade, with only Peyton Manning, Kordell Stewart, and Rex Grossman in his league.

He's led the Patriots to 3 Superbowl championships before his 28th birthday (an NFL record), and barring what would be considered a major upset is going to win his fourth in 2008, and his head hasn't swelled at all. Every week he says the same thing, something like, "We can play was a good win...we have a long way to go...we didn't set out just to win ____ games..." He's extremely humble, not like Chad Johnson or Terrell Owens, two guys that have never, and most likely never will, win even one NFL championship.

Not only is he a scary good quarterback that seems to always make the right decisions, compete tenaciously, and win every week, he has also become the most well-known football player in the world off of the field. The dude won Esquire's best-dressed man of the year in 2007, and was recently honored by GQ as one of the best-dressed men of the last 50 years.

Tom stays fresh. He rolls into his post game press conferences wearing designer suits and ties with his hair in a part that he somehow pulls off. I'm convinced that no one else has since the late '50s. If I tried it, I'd look like Professor Snape, Tobey Macguire, or Lenny Smith circa 2006.

Most guys that dress as stylishly as Brady are referred to as metro sexual, but somehow he escapes that title. Maybe it has something to do with him playing the most macho and popular men's sport of all time, and has been knocked down by huge steroid-enhanced men. Men of a caliber that you will not find tackling people anywhere other than a football field or maximum security prisons.

Now, if you're talking about Brady--especially if you're praising him--you simply have to mention his inconceivable success with women. A lot of girls dig guys that are athletes, especially professional athletes. A lot of other girls are into humble guys that exude a certain self-confidence but don't reach into the realm of cockiness, guys that embarrass and work cocky men every weekend. Many other women are attracted to guys who dress well.

Case in point: pretty much every woman in the world could feasibly be attracted to Tom Brady, and for more than one reason.

I mean, look at his girlfriend:

That, my friends, is Giselle Bundchen. She is a model for Victoria's Secret, and is considered one of the hottest women alive. She is dating Tom Brady. Tom Brady gets to do things to this woman that countless forty year old men dream of doing everyday in the bathroom as they look through the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue or their wife's Victoria's Secret catalog.

What I'm trying to say is that Tom Brady lives a life that many, if not all, men can and are envious of. I wouldn't mind being him, that's for sure.

Oh, and they won tonight. He had three touchdown passes. His press conference is going on right now. He is wearing a suit, and just said that the Colts are "a damn good team." Now he's rambling on about how great his teammates are. What a guy.

November's Man Crush of the Month: Tom Brady.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Other Things I Have Learned

*If you haven't read the previous entry, do that first.

I was talking to my eldest brother about things that I've learned, and realized that I've learned much more than I have labeled. This is obvious, but some have come to mind that I feel as though I should absolutely mention. Especially my first one, because he said that's the best one he's read.

I've learned that gays are usually very funny people, and the same with Jewish people. I've also observered that homosexual Jews are the funniest people I have ever heard or read (David Sedaris, David Rakoff). I suspect this is for the simple reason that joking and laughter are the most logical defense mechanism for people who are constantly getting fucked over or ripped on, and no one gets it worse than gay jews.

-If you play a sport in high school, more power to you. I have a couple of tips though. When high school is over, put your letter jacket away. If you're not good enough to play in college, that's that, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you're a white dude that could cut it on the varsity level but has no real athletic ability. It's happened to the best of us (I played for two weeks and realized that I wasn't that great), but just because it has doesn't mean that you have to treat intramural sports like the 1996 Summer Olympics. This means no UnderArmour allowed, because you lose the right to wear that for football, basketball, or track and field after you end your varsity career (to clear up some questions, it is still allowed for table tennis).

-Sarah Silverman is not funny. At all. Somehow I don't think Jimmy Kimmel could do much better, though.

-If you're a janitor, you should get fucked up every day before work.

-There's no reason to lift weights if you don't play sports. Girls really don't choose their boyfriends due to abs or biceps. I know this because my amount of female suitors did no diminish when I acquired mono during my freshman year of college and lost 15 pounds of muscle in two weeks.

-David Hasselhoff should be pissed on.

Shaquille O'Neal is a douchebag.

-Steve Nash and Steven Colbert are on two opposite sides of a spectrum, but are two of the raddest dudes alive.

- Fuck the state pen, fuck hoes at Penn State.

-Kanye West is better than 50 Cent, but Lloyd Banks has recorded the greatest lines in hip-hop history: "I think losers are mad 'cause I'm flossin' bad, I ain't a wrestler, but I'll put your bitch in the Boston Crab."

-The Boston Celtics will win the Eastern Conference this year.

-Jonathan Papelbon is a white boy that can dance, his neck is red, he puts miracle whip on his wonderbread.

-NASCAR is fucking stupid.

-This sounds unbelievably cheesy, but it is possible to fall in love with a girl's smile. It's rare, but it happens.

-Italians are extremely proud, but of what I don't know. Apparently nothing. Maybe they're glad that they were dictated by Mussolini for a while, or because they believe that they invented ravioli (in reality it was Chef Boyardi, and he's as American as Stephen Colbert).

-BoyzIIMen are unbelievable, and so is Mariah Carey. They collaborated on the song "One Sweet Day," which is unarguably the greatest song about death ever recorded.

-Dogs really are man's best friend.

-There are two sides to every story. This is why there are so many mothers and fathers that hate boys that their daughters have dated.

-Global Warming is a myth, or it is at least overstated.

-General Education classes are a money-making ploy by the college you attend.

-The world is not as bad as it seems.

Things I've Learned

The end is near. As I sit here on this Friday night at around 7:30, I begin to deal with the stunning fact that I have three days and four more nights before I am no longer considered a teenager. This frightens me to no end, for the simple fact that until now I have used my youth and status as a teenage boy as my excuse for basically everything. Why I was so irresponsible, so lazy, so naive, so laid back, so unambitious, and so afraid of committing to absolutely anything, namely girls (which has thankfully changed recently).

Now, I'm all out of excuses, and I have no juvenile title anymore. I will soon be stuck in a terrible age range, which would be the space between 19 (when you can drink in Canada), and 21 (when you can drink in my homeland). I won't say that 20 is the most insignificant birthday of one's youth, but it is of no real benefit to anyone.

So, I'm going through a quarter life crisis, a little bit early, but it makes sense to me. 20's a quarter of the way to 80, and I'll consider myself inordinately lucky if I live even that long, especially if I continue forth with my current lifestyle.

I could bore you with all kinds of things dealing with my age and how depressing it is, and how long of a year it will be while I wait to become a true adult and reap the benefits of non-closet binge drinking, but I don't want to dwell on things like that. Instead, I'm going to mimick a segment of Esquire magazine called "Things I've Learned." It's in the publication monthly, and they have an older famous man list some things that he has learned through his life. Here are some of the things that I have learned.

-There are people out there who spitefully make fun of people that have never wronged them in any way because they are mentally slow, physically disabled, fat, fashionably inept, or poor. When you ask these people why they do this, they will say something like "Because it's funny," and they will maintain that. They probably even tell themselves that. I have learned that these people truly suffer from a low self-esteem, and do these things to make themselves feel better. They jeer their victims about things they are unable to control, only because they themselves are not clever enough to joke with someone on a level playing field.

-People are evil (see above)

-Drew Barrymore will never make a good movie, Nickelback will never make a good album, Dane Cook will never be funny again, and Andy Dick will just flat out never be funny.

-Osama Bin Laden was the most evasive hide & seek player to ever step foot in Al Qaeda Elementary School.

-Radical Islam is so totally stupid, and it could not be more obvious. There is no god that would shoot you up to heaven and give you 50 virgins to hump because you blew yourself up in a shopping mall full of people you have never met in your entire fucking life. Maybe if you'd have killed Hitler during World War II, you would get some ass once you ascend, but not innocent people who are simply different than you religiously speaking.

-Much to my chagrin, Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, Witches (except Ann Coulter, Nancy Pelosi, and a few that should probably go unnamed), Wizards, and the Loch Ness Monster do not exist. Oprah, however, does.

-Some people hate their peers for no particular reason without ever meeting them or even conversing with them. It's one thing for someone to hate you for who you are, as long as they do indeed know who you are, and if that is the case you're obviously not going to cater your personality to their standards.

-You can't allow yourself to be bothered with people that fit into the above category.

-Most negative reputations are not entirely true, and are pioneered by people that are either angry at you for something you've done to them or someone close to them, or are just flat out jealous of you. Take my good friend Mark Ferguson for example. If I believed everything I heard, I'd think the kid was not really a kind-hearted, respectful, and downright hilarious individual. He has always told me that "Jealousy makes a hater hate," and I've learned how true that is.

-"Ignorance is bliss" is a very relative cliche. It applies if a particularly unsavory character has just masterbated in your bathroom five minutes before you enter to take a shit; it does not apply if your girlfriend is taking it in the ass from your best friend while you are on a business trip in Tokyo.

-You can be as independent as you want, but family is still unfathomably important.

-Rural and suburban White men should not attempt to dance like the characters in Stomp the Yard, or You Got Served. There's a reason that we are not named Omarrion.

-The written word is going out of style. Nobody reads newspapers or buys books anymore. In a nutshell, all of my aspirations for a career are utterly fucked.

-Alcoholism isn't a disease that is passed from generation. It is a mindset.

-Drinking is not as bad as some people make it out to be.

-Many areas of many religions make very little or no sense to me, but I am not as enlightened as some people.

-There are some arguments that can never be won.

-George W Bush blew a chance to be one of the most respected and revered Presidents of all time.

-Brett Favre is one of the most respected and revered quarterbacks of all time.

-Kordell Stewart threw a hail mary once when he was in college playing for Colorado, a college football program that would have their reputation tarnished forever for allegedly sexually assaulting a female kicker (a marketing scheme gone wrong, I'd say).

-The Democratic party sucks. The Republican party sucks. Political parties are very biased and unnecessary.

-Every pacifist that plays music and writes things like "this guitar will bring peace," and "whatever it takes" on their axes is extremely arrogant. Protest songs are all good and well, but nobody that's in charge gives a fuck about them, if they even listen to them at all. Neil Young is awesome, I love his music and his ideas, but he has not had a significant effect on anything. This is a sad thing, because it shows that the youth is not as ready to rally behind ringleaders like this and to stand up for what they believe in as they were in the sixties and seventies. My generation is extremely apathetic.

-Laughter is an absolute necessity for anyone and everyone if they want to establish any semblance of happiness. The world would, I sincerely believe, be an empty place not worth inhabiting if it was not for jokes and laughter. Though I may not be adept at telling them, I am not inept when it comes to enjoying them.

-The envelope must be pushed in order to convince people to listen to you. There's an edge that you must teeter on to make any kind of difference in the world.

-There are no worse character traits than cockyness or self-righteousness. Well, I guess urge to murder or sodomize children outdo that, but in the realm of normality the first two are the worst.

-I will always be an extremely light sleeper.

-Peter Pan had it all figured out.

-There are a great deal of people out there who boast that they take no shit from anyone, and then clam up when their mother yells at them because they left their skateboard outside and their chihuahua attempted to eat and digest their "Hillary in '08" political button.

-My parents really did usually know best.

-Coaches that want to be your friend are great, and coaches that try to run your life are terrible human beings whose wives run their household so they must rebuild their masculation at racquetball practice.

-Spanish is a really fucking confusing language, and anyone that is bilingual should get some kind of medal.

-You won't appreciate any kind of happiness until you've known some sadness.

-If something's bothering you or weighing you down, it's not always something you have to pour your heart out to everyone about.

-Communism looks great on paper, but would never work out in reality because it always converts into a dictatorship.

-I'm scared that when Hunter S. Thompson said that "I have a theory that the truth is rarely told during the 9 to 5 hours," he was absolutely correct.

-There are a lot of racists in the world.

-People should not bitch about Hurricane Katrina. Where one lives is a free choice, and if you opt to live in a PORT CITY that is BELOW SEA LEVEL, you are actually asking for it. If you're supposed to evacuate, go, and if you don't, don't blame it on the people that are supposed to help you. Your life and your possessions are no one's responsibilities other than your own, unless the government owns your housing, and then you have no reason to complain about anything because you'd have been homeless to begin with.

-Every dream you have will not come true. That's why they're dreams. They're an escape from the monotony of real life. I used to dream that I would play in the NBA as a basketball player, but the reality of it is that I'm white, slow, and flat-out not that good. Then, I would dream that I would write a movie script in high school that would propel me into Hollywood where I would have Johnny Depp and Jessica Alba play in my movie, and we would have a three-some. When someone tells you to believe in your dreams, take it with a grain of salt, unless your dreams are totally realistic, which makes them not dreams at all. Right?

-Going against everything I have ever said or stood for, girls are not that bad. Having a girlfriend is not that bad. It's actually enjoyable.

-Karma is real.

-It is O.K. to cry.

-Fate does not exist. Fate is the way that you choose to live your life.

-Everyone makes mistakes, it's how you make up for them that matters.

-Part of me will be a teenager forever.

-All of me will never take this life seriously, and I will take myself even less seriously. "Don't take life too seriously, you'll never make it out anyway" explains it all.

-It's time to actually do something with myself. Just what, I can not tell you. I'm going to start with this bottle of rum next to me, and we will go from there.


Monday, October 8, 2007


"It's quiet hours," "Your music is too loud," "Open your fridge for me," "You have too many people in here," etc.

If you have been in college and lived in a dormitory, especially as a freshman, and are a person that likes to have fun from time to time, you probably have heard at least one of these compliments. If not, something resembling it, and you'll also know who knocked on your door and said it: an RA.

For those of you who don't know, RA is short for Resident Assistant. RA's live in on-campus college dormitories, and are supposed to basically keep the peace between students and enforce all of the rules of the dormitory. Mainly, in my eyes, they're there, especially in freshmen dorms, to regulate the alchohol ban. If you wanted to drink in my dorm last year, you had to be stealth. Bottles were a big risk (that's how I got caught...bottle clanging and a pretty boisterous game of Moose), and if you wanted to do a power hour you were better off using a fucking stopwatch.

As it works where I go to school, one RA would be on duty for the entire dorm per night, and they would stroll the halls making sure that everything was peaceful and quiet. The rules have to be enforced by someone, I guess, since apparently 18 and 19 year olds that have just been unleashed in the world to live on their own tend to go a little crazy. I understand that these gratified babysitters is obviously a necessary evil, and I respect that. In fact, it doesn't really even have to be an evil even, because RAs start their job with a chance to be reasonable and cool towards their floor and dormitory. We can compare the reasonable RAs to that babysitter you used to have that would let you watch TGIF until 10 and let you fill the bathtub up with as much water as your little heart desired.

Now, in my experience, there are two types of RAs. The first type is the kind that I had the most experience with , since the two RAs that were in charge of my floor during freshman year were very approachable and lenient; these guys only punished kids when it was an absolute necessity. If they were disturbing other kids on the floor with their noise or actually seriously damaging something. They'd talk to you, and they actually kind of became friends with me and my fellow tenants. These were the guys that you could tell were RAs for the economical reasons. They got free housing, free food, and maybe some other benefits that they needed because they couldn't afford to pay 2,500 dollars a month to live in a box. They were only interested in damage control and keeping the job that they actually needed. I wish there was some way that the panel in charge of appointing Resident Assistants could select only these people for the job, but sometimes it's easy to hide your true self. Especially if you're a douche bag.

And, I guess we'll call the second type of RA the douche bags. RAs have--if you can really call it that--power, and when people get power, they either treat it as they should, or they abuse it. The douche bags do just that.

You know those rent-a-cops that you see at football games that are always trying to be enforcers? Those are RAs that didn't make it into college.

I wouldn't be surprised if these guyswere RAs for the power, not the monetary reasons. These are the guys that would knock on your door every night and tell you to quiet down, quiet hours or not. They would sit outside of the door with their ear against it, listening to you (like fucking Richard Nixon), just waiting for you to say the word "beer." You might think I'm exaggerating, but this happened to my friends that lived in another dormitory last year. Their RA is, I'm pretty sure, the ring-leader of all douche bag RAs on the Behrend campus. He's at the forefront of power tripping and unnecessary punishment to get himself off. It's disgusting, really, and something oughta be done.

This particular guy I've been basically bashing has had a hard-on for a few of my best friends and me since last year (we'll call him T. Chevy). It started on our first night of college (when he was creeping around the halls trying to bust kids before the year even started), my roommate and I were in my friend's room when he was on duty. To make a long story short, I overdid it with my consumption a little bit, because it was, you know, the first fucking night of college. It's like a right-of-passage. Anyway, I guess I stumbled out of their room, and he told me to stop and leave the door open, so that he could bust everyone in the room. My roommate and I ran for it, me back to my building and him to the bathroom for a simulated thirty minute long shit. He busted the rest of my friends, but they refused to give up the name of my roommate and I. They would not budge, and we eventually got away with it after they had a few meetings. All chargers were dropped, or whatever you want to call it.

This continued later that year, when we were in a dodge ball tournament. We were playing my dorm hall against his dorm hall, in fittingly the Battle of the Halls. My friends and I won, and this dude got so into it (he was wearing fucking Under Armour, skin tight, which I think might be against any and all intramural regulations. You lose the privilege to wear something like that after you finish playing high school sports.), he was complaining to the refs and stuff, it was kinda weird. Anyway, that was it for that year, and I figured it'd be over. Actually I think some of my friends were in a car and saw him and called him a "fucking faggot," which probably didn't help bury any hatchets.

I was thinking about all of this because we had another confrontation with him today, when we were at an intramural flag football game. We lost the game. It happens. We were leaving the field, and our boy Chevy was waiting to play after us. As we were walking away he started saying demeaning things to one of my best friends. We immediately started laughing, which just angers people more, so he tried to say some more. He made an ass out of himself, and we loved it. The best insult he got out was something about my friend wearing a shirt with a sleeve cut off. We, however, cut up on him pretty good. Ferg got off some good insults about wearing Under Armour, which sounds lame now, but you had to be there. It was good.

Ok, that whole ramble right there had nothing to do with my thesis at all, but it felt great to be able to say things to this power-abusing nobody, since he can no longer punish us. We live off of campus, and are away from his pale red-head grasp. Fuck that guy.

Anyway what I'm getting at through all of this is that kids are getting the short end of the stick when they enter college to live on campus. It's not at all fair for someone to have to deal with a cretin like T. Chevy that's only pleasure in life comes from intramural sports and catching kids with banned blenders in their dorm rooms. I know I'm not a really cool person, and that I'm writing this just kind of bashing someone when they cant' really say anything back, but I'll give him his opportunity sometime, the next time he heckles one of my friends.

If you have power, especially such a petty power as those that come with being an RA, don't abuse it. Use it how you should use it, to keep things in order without being tastelessly excessive. Be like Superman, not Kim Jong-il.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Favre 4 President

Today I got to see Brett Farve break Dan Marino's coveted record for most NFL touchdown passes thrown by a quarterback in the history of the league. This was a pretty big triumph, and I've always considered myself a fan of Favre. Not only can the man play the sport and throw a ball like pretty much no one I've ever seen (except maybe Peyton Manning), but he also comes off as a really cool dude. I'd like to hang out with him.

While I was thinking on my admiration for the man, I thought about John Madden, as I always do. Madden has a love for Favre that I think can only be paralleled by the quarterback's wife and children. So, anytime I think about Madden, I think about Frank Caliendo, the comedian that flawlessly imitates Madden. He uses Madden's comments and liking of Favre as the central part for many of his jokes about the aging color commentator, and it's fucking hilarious.

One thing that Caliendo often says when he's impersonating Madden is that, "Brett Favre should run for president." Now, I know this is a joke, of course, and I don't think that Caliendo or Madden truly believe that he should run for President of the United States of America. It seems like a preposterous notion.

But do you know what? I think he should go for it.

There's obviously an election coming up in 2008, and there's a diverse spackling of candidates this year. It's very plausible that our country could have it's first movie/television star since Ronald Reagan (Fred Thompson of Law and Order or the legendary Christopher Walken), it's first black president (Barak Obama), Mormon president (Mitch Romney), or female president (Hilary Clinton, in which case I will relocate to the land of Alanis Morrisette and Steve Nash). Why not a professional football quarterback? Gerald Ford played quarterback for the University of Michigan, and as far as I know he didn't fuck anything up too bad.

There are a number of plausible reasons for why I think that Favre would make a great president. Seriously.

He's obviously a great leader. He's become famous for being an unselfish and unpretentious man and player; basically he is all about the team, which is something you don't see as often as you used to in professional sports. I'm not saying that he'd be a communist if he was a president, but I'm saying that he definitely would not be a dictator. He would listen to opinions and change his agenda accordingly, I think, which is a quality that many argue our current president has not been blessed with. I can't really comment on that, since I've never stated an opinion for the man, but I feel like Favre would listen to me when I told him that women should be able to legally vote when they reach the age of 18 (I know this has already come about, but I needed an example).

I also think that Favre may be able to manage the war pretty effectively. This starts with my previous statements, that he would listen to opinions and act accordingly, maybe finding some kind of compromise between what the opinions of all parties and people may be. If it was deemed necessary to actually win the war in Iraq, I think Favre might be able to effectively do that. I don't want to compare war victories to football victories at all, because I know that they are nothing alike and I could piss off a lot of people by doing something so ignorant, but I will say that Favre is used to winning and has a pension for it, maybe more than any other president. Bush, for example, has only owned the Texas Rangers, and in case you don't know baseball too well, they suck.

Another big issue in our country is the people's anger and resentment concerning the current administration's reaction when Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans. Bush and his people have been on the receiving end of some extremely rough criticism over this whole issue, many of it racially and socially motivated. It's no secret that many of this nation's citizens feel that they did not react quickly enough in aiding the people that were stuck in the floods and storm because the majority of them were lower-class black citizens. Rapper Kanye West has gone on record as saying that, "George Bush doesn't care about black people." Maybe he does, maybe he doesn't. I haven't asked the man, and I wasn't in New Orleans before, during, or after that natural disaster, and I don't watch Spike Lee documentaries.

What I do know, is that Brett Favre cares about black people, because Brett Favre cares about everybody, due to his selflessness and willingness to be of aid to anyone, including those with heartburn (Priolosec OTC!). If you've ever seen Favre's usual celebration after throwing a touchdown pass, you know that he sprints to the endzone and picks up the player on the receiving end of the pass and literally carries him around on his back. All of his receivers are black, so if there was a disaster, I think it's safe to say that Favre would carry all of us on his back, including black people.

Those are just a few of the reasons that I think Brett Favre should be president, and I could go on with a few more. Maybe I will as election time draws nearer, but right now I must go watch The Notebook with some of my friends.

Brett Favre, September's Man-Crush of the month.

Friday, September 21, 2007

We Just Draw Dicks To Pass The Time

I was sitting in Introduction to Meteorology earlier this week, which is obviously one of my classes. Even though my professor is hilarious and I am vaguely interested with the class, I still have a hard time paying attention. I attribute this to the face that it is a science class, a subject that I have no skill in or patience for. When I have trouble paying attention, I usually participate in things that are going to be of no benefit to anyone, and I try to be funny, but like Carlos Mencia, rarely succeed.

So on this particular afternoon, I was sitting in my seat in the back of the room trying to figure out how to draw a fucking isopleth so that I wouldn't fail the quiz that I have to take about eleven hours from right now. I quickly became bored and zoned out, and thought about resting my head on my arm and taking a quick nap (which always results in me twitching myself awake and falling off of my desk which sends everyone around me into fits of laughter and taunting), but realized that I wasn't as tired as I normally was.

I searched my immediate vicinity for something that I could possibly entertain myself with. I thought about getting a book out of my bag, but apparently people don't read books anymore and I would be chuckled at by my roommate, who happened to be sitting right next to me. So, then I thought about sending out a text message, but to whom? I couldn't think of anyone or anything to say, so I mentally drew a line through that idea.

Then, fate (or something, I don't know if I believe in fate. Talk to Mike Buesink about this, he'll give you a good argument that will quickly turn into something unbelievably irrelevant to the subject at hand.) intervened. My friend Kayla, who sits one row to the right of me and one desk up, grabbed her planner out of her backpack--probably to mark down that we had a quiz on Friday. I did no such thing. I keep it all up in the noggin.

She jotted her note down, and then dropped the planner on top of her backpack, that was sitting on the ground beside her chair. It was plainly exposed, and I counted to 50-Mississippi before I made my move. I slyly reached down and snatched her planner from on top of her bag.

I got out my black pen and wondered what I should write in her notebook, which is a stupid thing to say, because you and I both know that I had it in my head what I was going to draw as soon as I hatched my plan to snag the planner.

Naturally, I drew cocks.

Now, for those of you who do not know what a "cock" is, I'll list a definition and some synonyms. A cock is the male sex organ. It is commonly referred to as: dick, dong, shlong, wang, purple-headed yogurt slinger (courtesy of James Van Der Beek), the octagon (Brian Fantana), weiner, mushroom head, lighthouse, and if you want to be politically correct, penis. There are many others, feel free to let me know if you have any creative ones that I haven't listed, or something cool I don't even know about.

I drew cocks all over September 21, 20, and 19th.

So, after this random act of nonviolence, my rommate and I shared some laughs, and then he took the planner and drew more dicks on it. We laughed some more, because we are unfathomably immature 19-year-olds.

If you're wondering, they looked kind of like this:

Later on that day I started to think about why I had drawn penises all over my friend's planner. Apparently she plays basketball, and her coach looks at her planner every week. She plays girls basketball too, and her coach is a woman. This means that she's a lesbian. I wondered how she would react, or if she would know what they were. I began to take solace in the fact that I had written, "nuclear missile" next to one of them. I thought maybe she'd just think and Iranian or North Korean had gotten a hold of her star shooting guard's weekly planner.

I couldn't come up with a viable reason for why I had drawn weins on her planner. There was no real good reason, and this bothered me. I then wondered why every guy from the age of like 12 to at least...well I don't know how long it lasts, loves to draw the male anatomy all over everything. There is absolutely no plausible reason for something like this to take place. My roommate and I lived in a dormitory last year, and we tried to put a dry erase board up outside of our room door so that we could have a quote of the day. It was there one night, and the next morning there were 36 dicks drawn on it. What good did that do anyone?

One night this past summer, I passed out at a sleepover with a few of my friends (you know, we were playing chess and scrabble and watching season one of The Hills), and I woke up the next morning there were at least 20 cocks drawn on my body with purple marker. I'm sure it was funny at the time, but was it really worth it? I mean, they laughed about it for probably about ten minutes, but beyond that all it did was make me sprint into my house the next morning so that I could reach the bathroom for an hour long shower scrubbing before my parents saw me and thought that I was some kind of freak.

There was also that phase in high school, where you'd have to wash your car every three days, because if it got at all dirty, there would be cocks finger-drawn all over it whenever you came out to the student parking lot after basketball practice.

Then there was the amazing movie, Superbad. They talked about the dick-drawing thing being a disease, but they gave erroneous information. The character in the movie said that, "It's not a big deal. Something like 8 percent of kids do it." That is not true. At least not among the people that I hang out with. It's more like 98 percent of the kids that I know. One could argue that it's the crowd I hang out with, since they are some unorthodox dudes, but I don't buy it. There were countless kids on my dormitory floor that I'm absolutely positive carried around dry erase markers in their jean pockets just so they could draw meat sticks on unsuspecting boards.

Anyway, this has been bothering me all week. I want to know why kids, guys especially, are so into drawing penises on everything. It seems like it might be unhealthy, and I've thought about quitting the habit. I think it might be harder than stopping nicotine, though, because every time I see blank spaces on pieces of paper, I want to get a thick pointed Sharpie and just go to town. All I need is some justification for drawing weiners on things. If anybody has any input to this, please let me know. I haven't been sleeping, it's been driving me insane.

This is worse than the time I spent a whole week trying to figure out why anybody likes Nickelback.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Sweater Vests: Not Just For Douchebags Anymore

So this guy's walking down the street and you can tell that he's feeling great about himself. He's got his docker stain-resistant khakis on, pleated to absolute perfection, and he's probably wearing a pair of expensive aviators (everyone wears those fucking things these days). At first his attire doesn't anger you that much, it's more just the arrogant nature that you can see when he's walking down the street with his light leather jacket slung over his shoulder and being gripped by two of his fingers. He might have a toothpick in his mouth, too. But none of these things truly piss you off. It's something else. The man is wearing a button-up oxford, with the collar--more often than not on these people--popped. You might tap your friend on the shoulder and say something like "Hey, too bad I don't have my shirt on right now that has the mom putting her little boy's shirt collar down and saying 'remember, Billy, only retards pop their collars.'" Then the deal is sealed. You notice that over top of his button-up shirt he is boldly wearing the most debated and feared male fashion item since the cowboy boot:

The sweater vest!!

It's at this time that the rest of his stupid style products cease to exist, at least in your eyes. You take consolation in knowing that this man wearing the sweater vest will absolutely, no matter what, ever get laid by anyone that is more attractive than a New Zealand goat.

You laugh it off, and then don't think about it again until it's too late.

By too late I mean, in my case, whenever I flipped open an issue of Rolling Stone about a week ago. I was leafing through the 2957 adds at the beginning of the issue, looking for the always elusive table of fucking contents, just trying to find out what stupid ass politically misled thing Green day was cooking up that week so that I can make fun of them on my lackluster internet blog.

I get to the usual GAP advertisements, which always include celebrities wearing their clothes and staring at the camera like they would pay to blow you and then do your dishes and clean your apartment afterwards. The first person I saw was a man, and I didn't recognize him. He was defined as a clothing designer. I figured he was no role model of mine, since I can't even match my clothes, let alone design ones that make people look as though they fought in Vietnam and then rolled around on a fresh Andy Warhol painting. I flipped to the next add and see John Legend or some shit and think that I don't want to be a little soulful whiny dude banging away on my piano, even if it would gain the respect of Elton John.

I flipped to the final page of the add and discovered that John Mayer was now advertising for the GAP, and he was wearing a pair of jeans along with a sweater vest. That was it. No shirt underneath, just a striped sweater vest, with the guns flying. I was initially pissed because I had to immediately pay two more dollars on top of the original subscription price because I had viewed the gun show, but before long I was distracted by other thoughts. They started with two words: Jessica Simpson.

It's no secret that Mayer, the new age guitar god, put it to Daisy Duke. It's also not a secret that 98 percent of straight men in the United States envy him for doing so (the other two percent are those friends that we all have who for some stupid ass reason think that their girlfriend is the most beautiful being in all of the world and have no desire for anything better, even though their girlfriend has an ass the size of the Lusitania). The thing about Mayer is that I never really understood how he bagged one of the most coveted women in recent history (though I also don't understand how Cash Warren got Jessica Alba, or why The Hills is considered a good tv show, but the world is a confusing place), because he never struck me as a really "cool" guy. I mean, I once saw an interview with him with Matt Pinfield where he just kept talking about the blues and making sounds with his mouth that were supposed to resemble musical notes. He played the air guitar while doing so. I just assumed that it was his incredible guitar skills, since he is known as the next Eric Clapton and what not, or that he has some lyrics that will make the panties drop, but I was kind of skeptical of this since Jessica Simpson is something like a goddess. She would only fall for boyband types with muscles and music videos with the Doritos girl. She was nearly invisible.

I finally discovered that it was none of his talents except for one: his ability to dress. It had all become clear to me, finally. The sweater vest was the key to entrance into the atmosphere of the most beautiful women in the universe. I was beginning to think that if I wore a sweater vest, Marilyn Monroe would come back from the dead to toss my salad while Penelope Cruz filmed it and Jessica Biel fixed me a bologna sandwich for afterwards.

Let it be noted that I said I was "beginning to think," not that I was "totally convinced," though I now am. Today I was sitting in my meteorology class when I happened to take a sidelong glance at a guy sitting ahead and to the left of me; northwest, if you will. He had a gray and black striped sweater vest on, and for the first time in my life I didn't think, "Oh, this guy's a fuck. He should be on Dawson's Creek." Instead I thought, "Hey, that doesn't really look that bad at all. I might actually wear something like that."

Sure enough, as soon as we walked out of class this suave individual swept a broad on a level of sexyness that I have only been familiar with through internet downloads. They did the jump, hug, and kiss straight out of The Notebook, and she was almost as hot as Rachel McAdams. Okay, maybe not that hot, but I wouldn't have thrown her out of bed for eating Pringles.

So, I'm making a declaration: sweater vests are not just for douchebags anymore. When used sparingly and tastefully, they can be the most powerful weapon a man can wield. Starting today, I'm going to have to say that the sweater vest is cool. So start pumping that iron, baby, because they don't cover the arms.

Postscript: Everything I have said in this article is null and void. I own two sweater vests, and I have owned them for over two years. They are argyle. I am a douchebag.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Theme Parties: Friend or Best Friend?

Alcohol and fierce partying have gone hand in hand for as long as anyone can remember, and so much so that in some circles it is now frowned upon to get hammered if you are not in a party setting (I strongly disagree with this notion, but society seems to see things differently than me at times). For most drinkers, their partying experiences begin sometime in high school or very early in their freshman year of college, a time before they can go to bars or nightclubs or purchase their own alcoholic beverages. Some begin to stray away from the party scene once they reach the legal age in favor of established booze outlets. These are the people who were never really drinkers at all, and they have no credibility as such. They believe that once you reach a certain age, it is inappropriate to participate in keg stands or boat races. They are the people that always stood in the corner during the parties, sipping on a beer and attempting to find a mate for later on that evening.

There are those people, and there are the rest of us. The people that don’t’ need to find a mate for later on in the evening because we have already found her in the bottom of a bottle, and if we were to actually find a girl willing to go home with us, we would pass out on top of her. We are the people that go to the bars some nights, and the parties other nights. Some nights we go to the party and drink as much as we can for a small price before heading to the bar so that we don’t have to buy as many expensive beers to get tanked. We usually end up returning to the aforementioned party after last call if we are still able to stand.

It is for us that parties are designed, but one must admit that parties gain a sort of monotony after an amount of time. They seem to all be the same: beer pong, flip cup, keg stands, people puking, occasional dancing (mainly by the women and the goofy group of guys that pop their collars and garner respect from no one), etc. I’m not saying that these entities of a stereotypical party are not awesome, and I love them with all of my heart. I am saying, however, that where a usual party is great, there is room for improvement. It can be made better.

All you have to do is add a theme.

Theme parties were brought to prominence originally by college fraternities, but have since become popular among normal self-respecting people as well. A theme party is whenever the host declares a certain theme for the night, and all partygoers must adhere to this theme. Another common variation is that the party attendees who are dressed or acting within the established theme drink for free or receive a discount from the house.

It is important to note that all of the regular party experiences be made available during a theme party, since the object of one is to enhance the drinking/partying experience, not to altogether alter it into something that it is not. Have fun with it and be creative in creating and making your selections. Here are a few suggestions to get you started on the right path:

Office Hoes and CEOs: This is a theme party that seems to be designed for a classier crowd, but really has a hidden pretense: to get girls to dress provocatively. (This is an entity that will come up repeatedly in theme parties, because even if we are drinkers of a hardcore nature, we still like to at least look at women.) The girls are expected to dress up as secretaries that dress to climb the corporate latter and would not hesitate to give their boss a blowjob to relax him before a career defining presentation. Skirts are highly recommended, with usually a button-up blouse that reveals massive amounts of cleavage. Schoolgirl plaid skirts are also highly encouraged, even if they step out of the usual bounds of the corporate world. If any girl comes in wearing one of those pantsuits that you most often see on bankers with butch haircuts, she must be promptly ejected.

Guys are expected to wear a tie, which isn’t really that much of a sacrifice if it enables you to see women in skirts all night. Slacks are encouraged, jeans are forbidden, and if you wear an entire suit you will be extremely respected by your peers. A great thing about theme parties is that you get praise for going all out with your attire, and there is no such thing as going too far.

Rave Night: Before you immediately dismiss this one on the grounds that you believe the main ingredient of a rave is ecstasy abuse, think about all of the fun drunks could have if they threw one of these. A basement is ideal for this kind of theme party, since no outside light can be allowed to come into the venue. If there are windows, cover them with cardboard, plywood, or another opaque object. This is more of an expensive party to set up, because you must replace all of the light bulbs in the basement with black lights, and you must buy highlighters and neon paper to decorate the scene with. Clear cups must be used for beer pong, and you can dip highlighter ink into the water to make it glow. The gentlemen most often go shirtless at some point during the evening, and people begin to write on them with highlighter. Ladies are also highly encouraged to jump on the shirtless bandwagon.

The most important piece to complete the successful rave puzzle is, without any doubt, the music selection. There must be all kinds of ridiculous techno tunes playing throughout the evening, but current music can also be inserted once every four or five songs, just to keep people excited. Be sure to insert popular songs that people know the words to, because there is nothing a drunken enjoys more than sing “Don’t Stop Believing” with his buddies.

Title Nine Night: If you are a guy you know that most women want to be seen as your equal. Since you are reading this, I have the notion that you are undoubtedly an upstanding citizen and the absolute definition of a gentleman. Since you are both of these, then you should have no problem whatsoever in celebrating the equality of women. That’s what this party is all about, and it’s becoming a favorite of the “Sausage Fest” crowd.

Most college students take it as a given that women do not have to pay to drink at parties, and guys usually have to pay at least five dollars. I assume that this tradition started with a few parties, hoping to draw the ladies out for some drunken fun; and if the girls don’t have to pay, they may make drunken idiots of themselves and go home with one of the men at the party.

Eventually, this must have backfired, because everyone began doing it hoping to attract the ladies, and now it is seen as a sort of unwritten law that women do not have to pay to drink at college parties (or other parties I’m assuming. I’m still a collegian.). So, if you’re having a party and believe it will attract women by allowing them to drink for free, you are sorely mistaken.

This is how I came across the idea for a Title 9 party. If women want to be equal so bad, let’s give it to them, right? Have a party where all the ladies have to pay the same price as the men. This is a plausible theme for a few reasons: 1) If the normal amount of attendees show up, the party-throwers will make twice the amount of money that they normally would, and 2) if advertised correctly, this party may attract a great deal of women since they might find you more trustworthy than most college frat brothers, because they would feel that by having them pay, you weren’t trying to lure them there so that you could knock boots later on in the evening. It shows them that you’re into equality, but at the same time apathetic to the attendance of females at your party.

Grey’s Anatomy/ Doctors and Nurses Night: This is one of my absolute favorites, because everyone feels empowered when they’re wearing a stethoscope and lab coat. If I were to throw one of these, I’d be parading around the house in my white coat (and only my white coat) calling myself Dr. McDreamy and taking shots of Wild Turkey to mentally prepare for the interns I was going to punish for wrongly setting up an IV at the party to come. Then I would console them and coax them into the sack with my self-confidence, nonchalance, and unparalleled wit.

This is pretty self-explanatory. The attendees of the party must dress as doctors or nurses. You can tell a lot about a person by what they choose to wear to this certain theme party. Most of the guys will dress as doctors: white coat, normal wear underneath, shit like that. The women, however, can be read more easily. If they are wearing a doctors coat, don’t rule them out completely. This shows that they are ambitious, but they still may have a freaky side and could possibly wear glasses whenever they are studying, which can be extremely sexy on the right frame. They can also be power hungry with a God complex, which is mildly disconcerting, so conversation is actually necessary if trying to pick up one of the doctors. Some may wear a set of scrubs. If you see this, either kick them out or stay the fuck away. These types make no bones about it: they are ambitious, they are surgeons, and they will cut hearts out and dicks off. Keep your distance during flipcup, as they may be carrying a scalpel in their pocket. The third mode of dress you will see at these parties, the majestic mode of dress if you will, is the nursing mode of dress. Girls here hospital party, and they bust out their naughty nurse uniforms, like the girl that was in all of those Blink 182 videos when I was in the sixth grade. A girl like that is obviously a slut, or at least a closet freak. Stick with them.

Conclusion: Okay, so there are a few ideas for theme parties to get you started. Some others that I’ve been witness to are Cowboys vs. Indians night, which is an absolute riot whenever the police show up. Farmer night, Graffiti party, Christmas party, Biker night (Lance Armstrong style), and Famous Drunk Person Night.

If you’re unsatisfied with your party experience, give one of these a try. They will surely add excitement to your normal and monotonous party experience. Go on, live the dream. Feel young again!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

It's been a very rainy day today and from what I hear, the storms are supposed to last well into the night and tomorrow morning. This strikes me, personally, as awesome, because I have loved thunderstorms my entire life. I can't tell you why, but they put me into a good mood, which is basically the antithesis of what a thunderstorm is supposed to do to a normal human being.

So, an hour ago when normal human beings were cowering in fear about flash flood and tornado watches and running to the grocery store to stock up on enough essentials to last out the war on terror, I was sitting around and being generally happy about things. I was, however, extremely bored, and when I get bored I naturally attempt to find ways in which to entertain myself. I decided to shower and--for once--shave.

It was while I was lathering my face up and getting poised to attack with my Mach 3 Turbo (this is a razor, not an airforce fighter jet or a transformer) that the song "Stuntin' Like My Daddy" by Lil' Wayne came onto my shower radio. I immediately started busting out the rhymes with lil weezy, throwing my hands about in and Eminemesque fashion in my boxer briefs and saying "Where I'm from we see a fuckin' dead body everyday/ That's uptown, throw a stack at 'em/make a song about me, I'm throwin' shots back at 'em/Your bitch on my pipe, and she like a crack addict."

I stopped singing and became enraptured in deep thought. I suddenly realized that I could be like Lil' Wayne, and I desperately wanted to stuny like my daddy. I didn't know how to do this exactly, since my dad is a grocery store manager/owner so I don't think he really does much "stunting." (Which Urban Dictionary defines as "to be acting like a stunna or stunner.") So if I couldn't mimic his actions in the sacred ways of a stunner, I could try to mirror a physical characteristic. My dad wears glasses, so I considered doing that but thought that it would be a tad melodramatic since I have perfect vision, a fact that all of my friends know about. Next I thought about maybe rocking a haircut like my dad's. He has what we call the "horseshoe" haircut. If you are not familiar with the term, it is when a man is bald on the top of his head but still has regular hairgrowth everywhere else. It is in the shape of a horseshoe, if you will. I decided against this, siting that I will probably inherit that physical characteristic before too long. I finally settled on the perfect imitation of my dad, and something that would not only be "stunting," but would also be a perfect bring-back to the mainstream (this is my summer of the bring-back. I am currently trying to bring calculator watches back into mainstream fashion.).

This physical characteristic would be, my friends, the mustache

The mustache has hibernated just outside of mainstream culture since the late 1970's, when it was a staple for the males in early hardcore pornography videos. It thence became know as the porn stache, which I must admit is a sexier name. I think the reason that so many porn stars rocked the stache was because they wanted to express themselves in some way, and mode of dress could not be one of them since they spent the majority of their film careers in their birthday suits. Seems perfectly logical to me.

My dad used to rock an absolutely killer 'stache when I was a young lad. This was around the same time that he wore aviator glasses. Glasses, not sunglasses. They were aviators with clear lenses. You can't find those guys anywhere anymore; I suspect they are viewed as a collectors item. Anyway, he shaved it because the ladies didn't dig the bristling sensation they felt whenever he kissed them. Fucking sellout. I figured I'd give it a shot, since I'm not kissing many girls these days anyway.

Anyway, I went through with it and I'm sitting here now with a faint wisp of a mustache. I'm going to a concert tomorrow and will be around the biggest group of people I've been around all summer. I'm counting on getting heckled since this is my second go around with attempting to bring the 'stache back. During my senior year in high school I shaved in a mustache before a basketball game, believing that I would play like Adam Morrison. All that I got out of it was the heckling of about 30 fans from Perry High school, who are like the Cameron Crazies, except not smart. All game whenever one of them would yell, "Shave your mustache, you faggot!" or, "I bet you gave your coach a mustache ride before the game, and cut your fucking hair you Beatle!" I would just think to myself that the world was a just place, and they would probably be delivering my mail in 10 years.

People can say all they want about my hip new look, because I know that deep down some of the coolest dudes in history have rocked the porn stache.

We'll start with Mark Wahlberg, who played '70's porn star Dirk Diggler in Boogie Nights. He used to be the rapper Marky Mark, so he's got street cred, and he's now the executive producer of Entourage, which is one of the biggest cult television series to ever hit cable.

Next, there is now retired quarterback, Jake "The Snake" Plummer, who I believe was severely underrated as an athlete and as a lumberjack. He rocked the long Jesus hair and a beard for an entire season after he got rid of his porn stache. It wasn't until I analyzed my viewing of Plummer for the last few years that I began to understand that the porn 'stache has a certain amount of power. Once Jake went clean-shaven he had a terrible year, going from AFC championship runner-up to 2nd string piece of shit on a significantly worse team.
Adam Morrison became famous for his porn 'stache during his junior year in college, when he became the great white hope of basketball along with J.J. Redick. The lanky long-haired small forward used to unleash on opponents for forty plus points with seemingly little or no effort. The season before he grew his facial hair, he was just a blip on the college basketball whiteboy radar.
Tom Selik had a porn 'stache. Enough said.
If you want to feel manly you can always go out and shoot guns. You can wear flannel and Carhart jackets. You can chase shots of whiskey with oil cans of Foster's. Or, you can grow a porn 'stache. If you choose the latter, not only will you be viewed as manly and significant, but also maybe as a porn star which will lead women to believe you have a monster cock. I hear that's a good thing?
You will also have the power of the 'stache, which is comparable to nothing else in the world.
Just ask the cast of Miami Vice.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Pregaming and Partying: Two Seperate Entities

Almost everyone goes to high school, and out of these people most of them are involved in sports or some other extracurricular activity that gives them pride in the school that they attend and in themselves. (Unless we're speaking of the usual kids that want to be "different" and do this by denouncing anything and everything that has to do with their school. These are the children that set fire to their cap immediately after leaving the graduation ceremony.) After this, most kids go off to a college, and the initial seed of pride that was planted during their high school days is now transferred to an undeniable pride in their newfound college.

More often than not, this pride in the institution is conveyed through sports teams and events. I have more than one friend who attend Penn State Behrend with me (keep in mind: Behrend is not the main campus, and none of us will be going to University Park until next fall) that had orgasms over procuring season tickets to the Penn State football games this year. One of them actually sent me a text message the morning that tickets went on sale that said "Penn State football tickets in 10! Good luck everybody!!" They will go to the White Out game, which is a game where everyone in the stands dresses in white, and that is totally acceptable. I will be there as well, and I will be cheering for Penn State, but unlike them I will not review the turnout of white-clad supporters that have been posted on YouTube the next day.

Just to be clear, though, pride in a school's sporting programs is awesome, and I don't frown on it at all. I have plenty of pride in my school, and I'm glad to be a part of it for many reasons. There is one phrase that grates on me, and it has to do with the people who justify their pride and rank of school throught the amazing parties that they throw on and around campus. These are the people that use the phrase:

"At _____________, we pregame like you party!"

I see it so often in people's buddy infos, away messages, etc. and I always say to myself What the fuck? Are you serious?

I say this because it comes off not only as cocky and arrogant, but also just totally ridiculous; and for many reasons.

First of all, most schools have the same type of party scene, and the only thing that has an effect on the amount and size of the parties is the size of the school. I doubt there would be much of a difference between the parties being thrown by the frats and students of Penn State and Ohio State. Every school has basically the same parties--though some might spice if up from time to time with astounding themse--they play beer pong, bong beers, boat race, flip cups, play quarters, kings cup, get girls to make out, et/al. All college students are drunks, pretty much, and I'd imagine the consumption level is about the same between kids of the same status regardless of where they go. The only school that really stands out that I have heard of is West Virginia. I mean, you hear some fucking stories about that place. One of my friends that goes there told me that he was at a house party one night and two cops came into the party. I asked him if it was to bust it and send everyone home or to hand out some underages, and he said that was what he initially thought before they partnered up and started playing beer pong. These people also burn couches in the streets...when they win!

That was a lot of rambling, and I just want to be clear that my point is, most college parties are inherently the same: booze (free for females), games, and drunk kids.

Another reason that the phrase "We pregame like you party" pisses me off is that it really doesn't make any sense at all. Any college student worth their salt knows that the two should be separated. Pregaming is exactly what it seems like it would be, if you consider a party a game. It's when you gather with a group of people, usually in your place of residence (or by yourself, if you've got what people call problems) and have a few drinks before heading to your party of choice (with a designated driver if it is not in walking distance) to get drunk and indulge in the socializing that comes with such events. So, if you were to say to your friend, "Oh, at my school...we pregame like you party at your school! Losers," you would be implying that their parties are simply sitting around in a dorm room passing around a bottle of Calico Jack Spiced Rum and watching re-runs of Seinfeld. That wouldn't even be considered a party, and to call it such would be the equivalent of a collegian blasphemy. Those who would consider that a party are not truly drinkers and shouldn't fancy themselves as thus. I mean sure, my friends and I have done just this...sitting around in our dorm room all night drinking hard liquor and watching tv. However, we never called it a party. We called it "Sitting In Our Dorm Room Watching LOST And Getting Too Hammered To Follow The Plotline So We're Going To Have To Watch It Again Tomorrow" night.

Also, you can look at it from another angle. If these people do as they claim, which is pregaming like other college students party, then they need some help. If they truly do have pregaming sessions like other people's parties, then they are setting up ping pong tables in the lobby to play beer pong and flip cup. They've got a keg in a tupperware basin covered in ice next to the sinks in their community bathroom, and they are playing extremely loud music. At some point during this session, they are going to play "Thunderstruck" by ACDC and drink everytime they hear the word "thunder." If it's an especially good pregame/party (apparently they're synonymous to these people), girls will make out or show their breasts after their fifth drink. There will be a makeshift dancefloor somewhere, and people will be grinding on it. There may even be a band playing later on.

If these people try to get away with this kind of behavior, they will be caught and probably punished, because chances are if you live in a dorm you are under the legal age. So, it would be stupid to do something like that, and if you happen to live off of campus and you are doing these things as a prelude to your party, then you are just an overenthusiastic primadonna that has not a drinking problem, but an inablitity to judge timing. No one starts a real party at five o'clock in the afternoon.

Next thing you know, people will be saying that they warm-up like rockstars play their actual concerts. Coincidentally, they also party like them.

Monday, July 30, 2007

If You Don't Appreciate Mixed Condiments, You Had Better Ketchup

There's something you need to know about me: I was born with a burning passion for food. I don't discriminate at all when it comes to food, and you can believe me when I tell you that I will eat absolutely anything that is considered edible. More often than not I will like it and eat it again. If I don't particularly like it, I've mastered many ways to mask the unagreeable taste. It was in this way that I developed such a close relationship with condiments, which I am an enormous advocate of. Condiments rank pretty highly on my list of favorite things. It's current position is just underneath the memories I have of seeing Jessica Biel in her underwear, and it has recently overtaken the positions of both nicotine and LFO songs.

At the beginning of my infatuation with condiments I was content to try many different types with different foods and at different times. I had brief encounters with different kinds of steak sauces, before finally realizing that my personal tastes pertaining to steak and most kinds of beef were to lie in seasoning, not condiments. It was a lot of trial and error, and in the spirit of this I began to develop many experimental concoctions that are viewed as obscure by some, and flat out unacceptable to others.

The foundations of my condimental experimentations has always been set on one condiment, which is (this is not my opinion, but a scientific fact) the mother of all condiments, obviously ketchup. Anyone worth their salt knows that ketchup is the best condiment for most edible items, though sweet and sour sauce from McDonalds is making a convincing run at becoming almost as versatile. It's a dark horse, the Fidel Castro of condiments, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy it. Recent studies have also shown that ranch dressing could be considered a condiment as early as the year 2012. It has been slowly seperating itself from Italian and French dressing by showing its versatility and challenging bleu cheese as the number one dipping sauce for chicken wings and other types of poultry.

These "experimentations" I speak of have been met with many strange looks. It all started one day a few years ago when I was eating a Whopper from Burger King. I was in a very ponderous and observant mood, so I noticed the delight that I was experiencing from the condiments of my burger. I realized that the ketchup and mayonnaise had been combined into an orangish color that tasted absolutely unreal.

After I made this discovery, I began mixing ketchup and mayonnaise occasionally. I would put them both on my homemade cheeseburgers, and I would dip french fries in the mixture. I progressed to adding mayo to may hot dogs, which were already usually drenched in ketchup. I wasn't ready to go public with this finding yet, though, feeling that I may be subject to ridicule.

I soon became more comfortable with myself in public settings, and with this comfort came the broadening of my experimentational curiosities and willingness. It was during this period that I discovered my favorite condiment mix to date. This discovery and public advocation of its use has become one of the traits that I am most famous for. I'm constantly looked at with wrinkled faces and subject to jeering comments by friends and enemies alike because of my peculiar taste.

This mixture I'm speaking of is ketchup and ranch dressing. I discovered it one Friday night before a high school football game at King's Family Restaurant, when I was eating with my friends. I had fried chicken tenders and french fries, which I had ordered a side of ranch to dip the tenders in. I had ketchup on my plate as well, for the fries, when I made the greatest mistake of my young life.

I was deep in conversation about either the immortality of Steve Nash or Cat's controversial pick of Creedence Clearwater Revival as the topic of his research paper, so I wasn't paying much attention to my food. I accidentally dipped a tender into the ranch and then the ketchup after, making--I must admit--a rather gross looking combination of white on red that changed my life forever.

I have been dipping in this combo ever since, and it still brings me ridicule. Last night in fact I was eating chicken nuggets with my friends Emily and Kayla. I poured some ranch out onto the plate next to the ketchup, making sure they weren't touching so as not to offend anyone. I started dipping in the ketchup and then the ranch, and loving every second of it. Upon seeing this Emily had a seizure and Kayla vomited all over her Bowling Green State University acceptance letter. Bryan was also present, and he was able to keep Emily from choking on her tongue. She later regained consciousness and has no recollection of the adventure.

These girls were so totally grossed out by the look of my mixture, but they didn't even try it. I'm not asking you to take my word for it. I want you to try this for yourself, and if you don't like it, then you don't like it. And you don't know shit.

This event also proved something that I have been steadily learning recently, and that is that sometimes you have to do things that other people aren't going to like if you really want to be happy.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Shia LaBeouf: The Man.

Celebrities are an enormous part of the heartbeat of America. Most of us live vicariously through them in some way, and some of us would even like to be them. They are our role models, idols, or whatever you want to call it. For this particular essay, I would like to talk about actors: the people who act like someone that they really aren't in the name of entertainment. The ultimate escapists. When you and I are daydreaming about being them, they are actually being someone else, and for a ridiculous sum of money.

I have nothing but respect for these people, though. They have very glamorous jobs and lead very priveleged lives. Lives where they cannot make one misstep without the press revealing it to the entire world. They must watch their every move as close or even closer than the middle-aged women that pore over US Weekly for three hours on Thursday afternoon. If they don't, they will end up like Lindsay Lohan, who is perceived by the general public as...well we won't really put it into print.

Objection your honor! This rambling has nothing to do with the heart of the matter!


Every few years there is one or two very prominent actors and actresses that fly above the rest of the celebrity population. They are the idol to many of the same sex, and the wet dream of many of the opposite sex. They have some kind of appeal that cannot always be explained, but can never, ever be denied.

There was James Dean and Marilyn Monroe way back in the day. Then there was John Wayne. Then there was Jonathan Taylor Thomas for the teeny boppers in the nineties (by the way, what the happened to that guy? I miss him), and then more recently came the popularity of Brad Pitt and Johnny Depp. Angelina Jolie and Jessica Alba. These are the people who attract an enormous audience to the theaters on opening night, just because they are in the movie.

This year it seems to me that a new star is being born, if you will. His name: Shia LaBeouf.

I saw the new and highly anticipated film, Transformers, a couple of nights ago. This was deemed the movie of the summer by pretty much anyone who had a say in the matter. At the MTV Movie Awards in June, it won the award for "Best Movie You Haven't Seen Yet."

Tell me that that's not big time. This movie won awards before it was even a fucking movie.

I was totally blown away by this movie. I didn't know exactly what to expect going into it, because I didn't know if anyone could pull off the kind of special effects that would be needed to make a movie like this watchable. (For the record, all of the special effects were amazing.)

I may not have even gone to see it. I knew that Michael Bay was an extremely capable director (Bad Boys II, Pearl Harbor, Armageddon), but just hearing that he directs a movie doesn't make me rush to the box office.

The reason I really went to see this movie was the starring actor, who was obviously Shia LaBeouf. I'd grown up with this kid, since Even Stevens was one of my favorite shows in my junior high years. He'd played Lewis (or Louis) the eccentric boy in a family. I'd been attracted to this show initially because of his sexy sister, Ren, who looked a lot like a girl I used to date. After a while though, Shia's witty character won me over. He made me laugh, and that is my favorite thing to do in the world.

He made a movie a few years back called Holes, which I saw with my family but don't really remember. He was pretty good in it, but it wasn't extremely remarkable to me.

Then, he went under the radar for a few years, appearing only--to my knowledge--in the HBO series Project Greenlight.

But he is raging back. He was magnificent in the suspenseful horror/thriller Disturbia that came out this year, and then he landed the starring role in the summer's biggest blockbuster. It also seems as though he is going to be around for a while, since he has just begun filming the fourth Indiana Jones film. He also did the voice for the starring character in the movie about surfing penguins ( yes, I know), Surfs Up

He's the it guy for my age group, and I can't imagine a guy that wouldn't want to be like him. In both Disturbia and Transformers, he plays a character that would serve as a role model to any teenage or adolescent boy that is in anywhere near their right mind.

The type of character he plays begins the movie as a high school loser. The kind of guy that can't catch a break, a weakling on the social ladder. He progresses through the movie in an upward motion, becoming braver and braver and more accepted. Then, by the end of the movie he pulls off certain acts of unspeakably heroic proportions that yield all types of advantages. In both of his recent movies, he gets with extremely beautiful girls (Megan Fox in his latest, who my friends and me have deemed "possibly the hottest girl we have ever seen in our entire existence") and is viewed as the hero at the end of the film. In Transformers he even gets a brand new Camaro that turns into a fucking robot!

As I stated before, lots of kids want to be the kind of guy that LaBeouf plays in his movies. Even the jocks. Everyone wants to be the outcast underdog at the beginning, because then there is nowhere to go but up. Then, they want to battle evil robots or the psychopathic killer next door and win so that everyone respects them. After this, they want to bang unbelievably hott teenage women that live nextdoor to them and know how to fix cars.

I think that Shia LaBeouf is the next big thing as far as celebrities go. I think that if this happens, there will be a certain paradigm shift which would be absolutely amazing and beneficial for the general public. Instead of people idolizing and pining after beautiful and extraordinary celebrities, they can start to follow people that they can actually relate to. Ordinary guys that happen to have a personality that goes very well when parallell to the underdog movie character.

LaBeouf can usher in a new era for famous people. He comes off as a dork, and as long as he keeps becoming more popular, dorks will become a more accepted part of society. He is unintentionally helping misfits around the world by lowering the wedgy percentage by 37 percent.

It is a new age for Hollywood and the rest of its worshipping world. An ordinary guy has become a celebrity, and ordinary people will relate to him and act as he does, which will benefit the world as a whole: people will be ordinary. Or something.

Anyway, with this entry I would like to reveal a new monthly deal with this endeavor: The Man-Crush Of The Month. Every month, I will profile a new man-crush.

July's Man-Crush of the Month: Shia LaBeouf.