My Mother

mom

My mom, brother, me, and my sister

 

My mother was a selfless woman. That is not to say she’d step in the way of an oncoming bus because you’re playing Pokemon Go. You’re on your own with that one. She was selfless because she always put everyone in the family first. Even if it was the small things like making sure there were always shrimp cocktails at every dinner because I had loved them as a kid to the larger things like when she had sacrificed the last few good days she had left with her daughter, so my sister could go on the trip to South Dakota that was supposed to be my mom’s last hurrah, but the cancer had eaten away too much of her body.

That final trip, that she had enjoyed through photos and facetime was how she wanted us to be together. Rather than crowded around her bed waiting for the ticking clock that awaits us all, we laughed, saw the sights, played games, and ate meals together. That was how my mom was selfless. Even in her final moments, she wanted us to be with each other.

That’s not to say it didn’t break her heart that she couldn’t be there. She just wanted us to be there and would have a light in her eyes when she would see us and the grandkids. One of the hardest parts for me, was how this will affect my son Oliver as he is almost one and a half years old. I love him dearly, as much as my mother loved me. Because of circumstances entirely beyond his control, he may never know his Babcia beyond photographs and videos. And that breaks my heart.

Me Wedding

At my wedding

I was lucky to have been old enough to have known all my grandparents, and even had learned how to play chess with my mother’s father, even though I was in elementary school when he died. I remember the day clearly. We were singing songs for chorus in the library at school. I saw my dad at the desk with a distraught look in his eye. Even if I hadn’t been keen enough to sense the emotion, I should have known something was happening because chorus was in the morning, and my dad never came to school in the morning.

While Oliver is his own person and has his own life to live, I know had my mom been given more time. She would have that sense of selflessness for him too. She did buy him a singing dog, and he loves to press the buttons, over and over and over. He would have gotten to eat Babcia cookies, pierogis at Christmas, and would have attempted to turn on every single one of her holiday themed music boxes at the same time like I did when I was a kid (now I know why my mom bought the dog).

Peirogi

My mom and sister make pierogis

Maybe when he might come forward with dietary restrictions my mom would have seen to it to accommodate much like she did for me. Even though the gluten free pierogis she had scoured the internet for were more a gluten free apocalypse that ended up as gluten free pierogi balls, my mom went through with it anyway. She never worried about appearing silly or foolish as long as people were having fun.

We had spent many hours through the years, performing our own private MST3K on movies we thought were silly (much to the detriment of my brother and sister, who didn’t like when we talked over the movie). My mom used to laugh at the absurdity of life as a public school teacher. When my wife, Felicia, and I lived in New Mexico, we went to dinner parties at my parent’s house on a regular basis for no better reason then just to eat a meal. Of course, all the major holidays were covered too.

easter

The prize winning egg at Easter

And while cancer could take my mom’s body. It couldn’t take her spirit. Even when she was in a coma, and all I could do was tell her how much I loved her over the phone, she summoned enough to tell me how much she loved me as well as Oliver and Felicia too. Even on her very last day, the last time I could utter words above how much I loved her. Her eyes flickered opened. That was that selflessness again. She wanted to comfort me. Even though it was my time to comfort her.

I love you, mom.

xmas

Our last Christmas

The Juice

Opera Voice: Anal Leakage!

May cause: bleeding, hernia, anal leakage, death, head explosion, anal leakage, spasms, internal organ combustion, excessive sweat, did we mention anal leakage? Consult your doctor for a free trial…

I am not really a pill person. In fact, I don’t really know anyone who is a pill person:

Waiter: Welcome Pharmanoodles where we have pills and noodles.

Woman: I’ll have the Pad Thai… wait, you have pills! I’ll just take pills.

I guess Meth Addicts would be more of a pill person:

Meth Addict: Ahhh, dragons!

Which brings me to the point. Why do so many Americans take pills when the cost of a better diet is way cheaper? I’m not really spouting any new information. Hippocrates, a dead dude who invented malpractice, said “If we could give every individual the right amount of nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.” Exercise and diet are the key to healthiness.

The cost of medications alone should be enough sway people to eat healthier. But Americans have to do things in the extreme. Why take one pill when you can take nine? Your meds are making you depressed? Take another pill. But better diets can reduce the pill load. There is really no secret to healthy eating. Eat more vegetables. Americans treat vegetables with disdain and suspicion like someone decided to take shit on their plate. Fast food reinforces this believe by only offering vegetables that could double as toilet paper and often do.

Meth Addict: Ahhh, dragons!

Me: Could you stop that? I’m trying to write a humor piece. Here, have some juice.

There is this widespread belief that vegetables will not nourish our bodies that we need loads of meat and carbs. But there is a big difference between nourish and satiate. Large portions of carbs and meat satiate, they make you not feel hungry. But they don’t nourish. Nourishing the body involves adding vitamins the body needs to keep it running. So completely lacking vegetables leads to a deficiency in the vitamins the body needs to keep running propperly so we use medication to keep those processes going.

Back in the days before immigrants were hunted...

Notice how the cornucopia is filled with fruit and veggies… not burgers and fries.

So for me, it’s a very simple equation. I could spend a lot of money on medication or spend money on vegetables. So I’ve decided to start juicing. It’s like packing in a metric shit ton of vegetables into a cup. What could be more American than cramming something into thirty-two ounce cup? I can’t just go halfway maybe include more veggies on the plate than meat and carbs. I want to take a giant mound of veggies, more than a human could possibly eat in a day and condense it into a cup. Juicing is probably the most extreme version of vegetable intake. It’s so extreme that it’s sounds like some drug fad.

Meth Addict: Man you got the juice? I need a hit!

Dealer: Sorry, all I have is Meth. It takes too much time to juice and it’s too hard to clean up after juicing.

Meth Addict: Sounds logical to me…

Dealer: People will suck your dick for Meth. Unless they’re vegan. Then they’ll do it for juice.

Meth Addict: Do you really want Meth addicts to suck your dick? I have no teeth and scabs.

Dealer: I don’t think healthy sexual relations really play into the dealer/addict relationship.

Meth Addict: We sound like we should be in graduate school.

Dealer: That’s a good idea. Maybe I can give myself options besides a life of crime through education.

Five years later: The Dealer has graduated with his Chemistry PHD. He is giving the valedictorian speech.

Dealer: Hello class of 2018. The job market still sucks and there is nothing for my education level. I have more student loan debt than I can possibly pay off. But at least I can fall back on selling Meth!

Juicing involves piling more vegetables than a third-world nation family sees in a year on the counter, putting them in a machine, and drinking them in a tiny little cup. If you do it right, they taste pretty good. If your like me, you just sort of cram everything into the juice including the cat hiding under the vegetable pile. And juice the stuff which doesn’t always taste so good. So I’ll be sipping a juice feigning the wonderfulness of my drink and my wife doesn’t really believe it.

I’m drinking some brown goop while cringing.

Me: This is great!

Another sour face.

Wife: Un-huh.

Me: You want some?

Wife: No.

Another butthole pucker face.

Me: Are you sure?

Wife: Yes.

For some reason, she didn’t trust me. But isn’t that how all relationships are? They just don’t trust you when you meet your completely platonic friend in the a hotel room with a teddy bear, flowers, candy, and a box of condoms. They don’t believe you when you say you are simply filming a webseries about a teddy bear that uses a box of condoms to make balloon animal friends.

Teddy: Jeepers, that’s quite the long neck mister giraffe.

Giraffe: Only when I’m excited.

Laugh track.

Teddy: Are you sure there is candy in the magical flower forest?

Giraffe: There is but it’s guarded by a troll and you have to suck his dick.

Teddy: Wowza!

5 Back-to-School Saving Tips

Don't try this at home!

Pictured: $300 worth of supplies. As if the little shits don’t already cost enough. The lack of funding for schools is passed onto the parents.

It’s back-to-school time. Here are some ways to save:

1. Steal from a homeless guy – It’s much easier than you think. Buy them booze. Wait for them to pass out. And steal their backpack. There’s got to be pretty cool stuff in the backpack. After all, the backpack is only thing they own. If you could only own one backpack full of stuff wouldn’t be your best stuff ever! At the very least, you’ll get a backpack for your kid.

2. Sell Meth – I know what you are thinking. “But Aaron, I’ll snort too much.” Take it from me, I live in the same city where Breaking Bad was filmed, never use the product yourself. Snort cocaine instead. That’s what successful people did in the eighties. You want to be successful? Right? The best part is your kids will see your success and want to be just like you. And think of all the potential new clients you’ll get on career day at your kids school!

3. Reverse Donate – Go to one of those places that collects shit for orphans and say, “Look at all this stuff I have to donate. NOT!” And grab stuff off their table and run. You can also do this for Toys for Tots, church collection baskets, or just about any charity. Except blood drives. That’s kind of weird.

4. Auction One Child – Science experiments, human trafficking, rich oil barons, and the Tea Party (for ritual sacrifice) all need children. That’s why you have more than one kid. And think of the discipline opportunities. “You cut that out Billy or you’ll be sold off like your brother.”

5. Mug Other Children – Kids won’t put up a fight for their school supplies. If a teacher catches you, just tell them that the kid you were mugging was taking the school supplies from your child. Who are they going to believe a kid or you? Don’t answer that.

15 Facebook Buttons You Won’t See Soon

FACE! Book?

For a tool designed to simplify people’s lives, it seems to complicate it.

Facebook really needs a more realistic approach to their design. Each time they reinvent the interface, they always miss out on a chance to really have it more fully compatible for people’s lives. Here are a few buttons Facebook lacks for a truly more pragmatic social experience:

1. Having an Affair With – You have the married and in a relationship buttons but lack the affair button. I don’t think Facebook adequately represents some people’s social lives without one!

2. Also Married To – Polygamist relationships can be really rocky when they have to choose just one wife for Facebook. There is enough jealousy without picking one to represent the marriage.

3. Meh – Why is it always in terms of like and dislike? Why not ambivalence? Wouldn’t you want a button to express your extreme disinterest into your peers day to day thoughts and activities.

4. Masterbating – Facebook encourages chatting by telling all your friends when you are online. But what if you are just cruising Facebook for masturbatory purposes? You really need a button to let all your friends know that you aren’t looking at your best friends hot cousin’s photo because you wanted to know how she spent her summer vacation.

5. Jailbait – Your best friend needs a way to politely remind you about the age of their hot cousin.

6. Drunk – Streams of depressing rants, embarrassing photos, and anything you need to disappear can go into a spam like folder and spare you and your friends the embarrassment of dealing with it.

7. Polite A.I. Response – Ever caught in an online conversation with someone who rarely seems to have a point, has plenty to say, and never understands that polite one or two word responses really mean, “I’d rather light fire to my eyeballs than continue this conversation.” Polite A.I. Response Button will save you the Lasik surgery.

8. Behavior Tags – Facebook seems to lack tags like asshole or leech. Why tag a photo with someone’s name when you can identify them with behavior everyone will recognize?

9. Blur Face – Once you join witness protection, your social networking days are over. Any mafia hit man can just cruise Facebook and find your face. Unless you blur it. Also helpful for parties you’d rather forget.

10. Ass Shove – For every poke, farm request, and help me make Zynga rich request, you have one convenient button to tell them where to shove it.

11.  Profile Picture Changer – Why go to all the trouble to think for yourself when you can just follow the crowd? When a social cause propagates through Facebook, why not just have Facebook use the most popular profile pic among your friends as your own? It will be even funnier if we all change our profile picture to monkey asses after the Picture Changer goes live.

12. Stupid – This button really has too many uses to mention but wouldn’t it be great if you could warn your friends when they post drunken party pictures the night before their DWI trial?

13. Idiot – Most idiots are completely unaware that crap like, “She should have been wearing a longer skirt” or “Gays really need to make a different lifestyle choice” are simply just crap. So the idiot button would change whatever they post to “blah blah blah blah” or fart noises if there is audio. It will let those looking for an intelligent discussion have a chance to ignore the bullshit.

14. Validate Me – Some friends seek approval for their existence by irritating friends with all the drama they could probably avoid if they stop seeking it out. The Validate Me button will cut the engagement time required for validating their existence.

15. Vomited in My Mouth – I think everyone could use a “I just vomited in my mouth” button every once in a while.