Friday, April 23, 2010

College Supplement

I was clicking through my old My Documents folder the other day reading some of the papers I wrote back in the day of yesteryore. The ratio of "man I was a smart son of a bitch" to "when was I cured of my retardation without realizing it?" was about 1:3 I'd say. So I came up with this idea. I'm gonna take some of the papers that fit into that latter category(shit pile) and I'm gonna rewrite them now that I'm older, wiser, inexplicably more awesome.

First up is a college essay. Not the main one where you pretend like you actually had a relationship with your grandfather that passed, but one of the supplements. I'm sure you've seen it/remember it. "Pick the # words you think best describe you and give a brief explanation why." These are the words I picked senior year of high school: "critical/honest", "comical", "laid-back", "interested", and "ideological." And...


I should've added naive. Well, today, I know not to make the same mistakes. Colleges don't want honesty. They want a very distinct type of bullshit: self delusion. Here's what I would write today:

College Supplement 3
Siggi Asztalos

Dear admission officer. Let me preface my word choices with an explanation of what you are about to read. I know that you will be getting thousands of these where kids my age will throw every chivalrous word at you in the English language. Some multi cultural little prick is even going to get all "creative" and toss some fucking swahili on there. For everyone's sake, I hope you reject the shit out of that guy.

Anyone can flatter themselves just like anyone can masturbate. You can't ask a chef to evaluate his own cooking. A filmmaker to critique his own film. I'm sure that had you given this assignment to Stalin you would have gotten it back with words like "just", "humane", and "understanding of people's jealousy of my awesome mustache."

So I came up with some words to describe myself. But I'm not going to insult you by explaining their importance myself. Instead I've chosen a variety of quotes from close personal friends and acquaintances to drive my points home. Shall we get to it then?

1. Role Model

"Knowing that you will never ever be the best at something. That's a huge weight off my shoulders. Its also inspirational. One day I want to be as good as Siggi." - Michael Jordan

2. Giving

"It was obvious. Everyone knew it. There was no way I could be as good as he could have been. But he grabbed my arm, and he said 'Forget about me. You be the best damn Batman ever.'" - Christian Bale

3. Winner

"What can I say? He beat me at my game." - Bobby Fisher

4. Ethical

"We have a saying here in the smallest country in the world: what would Siggi do?" - Pope John Paul II

5. Sexy

"For Siggi...I'd make an exception." - Mother Theresa

6. Comforting

"He was the only one there for me when my brother died. He convinced me to go to the tournament and do it the right way." - Liu Kang

7. Unique

"Even oracles can be wrong sometimes. Siggi. Siggi is definitely the one." - Morpheus

8. Comical

"It was the usual banter at the end of a shitty day. I said I just wish those fucking Mongolians couldn't raid our god damn villages. The next day when I woke up there was a 500 mile long wall he stayed up all night to make. You can imagine the smile on my face. I almost died laughing." - Qin Shi Huang

9. Activist

"Things were better than ever. Siggi must have went to every high school in the state to speak to the students. And he put mirrors all over the beaches with a sign that said 'This is you.' It was working. Guido self awareness was up 88%. Then that stupid show came out and ruined all his hard work." - Chris Christie

10. Interesting

"How can you not? I follow him around. I stare at him all day. At least when the sun is up." - Siggi's shadow

11. Foresight

"He knew it before anyone, but no one listened. Or maybe they heard and chose to ignore. Either way...if there was a nobel prize for 'I told you so' he would have one." - Paul Krugman

12. Popular

"Under my uniform I wore a t-shirt with Siggi's face. Always. Never left camp without it." - Che Guevara

13. Legendary

"So I did it before him. And I'm a woman. Big deal. I had a plane. He did it in a speedo....and his time was faster." - Amelia Earhart

14. Paternal

"I'm proud to call him my father." - The Renaissance

15. Patient

"I told him not to tell anyone about me. Now he comes by and we chat on every leap year." - The Lochness Monster

16. Talented

"When I asked the obvious question, he said he had stage fright. So he taught me everything I know and, well, the rest is history." - Michael Jackson

17. Awesome

"Bringing him into this world was the proudest moment of my life." - God

18. Thankful

"When we accept students to our institution we don't expect anything. Every now and again someone surprises us with a thank you note. Once in the history of the school we got a bouquet of flowers. Needless to say I was surprised when I opened my apartment door to see Helen of Troy incarnate with the words 'Thanks - Your Pal, Siggi' written on her belly in whipped cream. My heart almost stopped when she informed me that she was a virgin." - Anonymous admissions officer

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Don't Tell Me That! Come On

People have a tenancy to do what I'm about to describe. Its comedic so it finds its way into sitcom plots all the time, and of course is why it has become a topic of a post here.

I'm walking back to the office from lunch. This lady is walking her dog toward me when suddenly she jets to the side, squeezes the dog's head tightly between her legs, and forceful muzzles its mouth shut with both her hands. She clenches the leash harder than Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt held on when a twister swept over them in the climax. As I pass by she manages to stop trembling long enough to tell me the following: "He won't bite. He just wants to play."

Lets press the ol rewind button here. Had this lady just walked past me with her dog all la-di-da...at most I would have thought: "Cool dog." At most. I probably would not have even noticed. I mean to tell you the truth I was very distracted by my debate with self to establish the five best N'Sync songs. I Promise You or Bye,Bye,Bye to advance from final four into the semi finals? Tough call. I mean Bye,Bye,Bye has a great chorus but the verses on...wait. See what I mean? What dog? I've totally forgotten about it.

Back to present. I see this lady put her dog into a cross between the Figure Four Leg Lock and the Walls of Jericho. God Must Have Spent A Little More Time On You fleets from my frontal lobe faster than Lance Bass's decent to obscurity. There's only one thing on my mind now as I creep toward this offsetting scene: How many babies must this dog have eaten in the past few weeks to warrant such preventative measures? "He just wants to play," she says. With what? My jugular? My heart was beating 200 beats a minute but it sounded slow because as our paths crossed time slowed down. One hand on my jugular, the other on my testicles. The rest of my body is as unprotected as the infant flesh this dog was snacking on before this walk. I close my eyes and imagine a pile of dog poop with a bright red pacifier resting on top of it like a cherry on a chocolate sundae. When I open my eyes they're gone...probably because what I thought was 4 seconds was actually 45 minutes.

And like I said, people do this all the time. I stopped crying from thunderstorms at 14 months. In fact, for four summers when I was a lifeguard there was no sound more pleasing than the loud clap of the lord's work. Well...Except maybe the sound of Elizabeth Monkey bawling after I tell her its 25 cents for a popsicle not 24 cents and one rusty piece of copper that she clearly has insufficient evidence to prove is a penny. Don't judge me until you meet this spawn of Satan. If anything I was doing her lard ass a favor; not to mention the countless sidewalks she tramples on daily. Do you like taxes? Earthquakes? I didn't think so.

So whenever I'm home and a thunderstorm breaks out at most I'll think: "Fucking rain." At most. More than likely I'm convincing someone that Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely is the Backstreet Boys indisputable pinnacle. That is, of course, until someone says something like, "Damn that was close. Don't use the metal faucets. I heard of this one guy whose eye balls melted inside his head." What's the medical phrase for when you imagine something so convincingly that it tricks your nervous system? Wait. I remember now: heart failure.