DOG DIARY: Watching my wife’s dogs while she’s gone:

 

Day 1.

Everything normal. Feedings and bathroom breaks all done.

Day 2.

The dogs seem to be watching me more intently than yesterday. Weird.

Day 3:

I feel they are planning something.
The dogs are being good, but out of the corner of my eye, I see movements, like hand signals…..or…..paw signals, if you will.
The oldest one seems to be ignoring them.
He wants no part of their plan, seemingly planning something of his own. He is regularly looking out the window, staring for hours, making me assume he’s constantly in thought about his plans.
Chica has chosen to be by my side, but I won’t fool myself. She’ll flip at the drop of a bread crumb. Literally.
The puppies have not chosen sides as they don’t seem to care about any outcome. They play in their poop, so I don’t see that attitude changing anytime soon, but when the time comes, I can only assume they will side with their mother.
I’m more worried about the map I found this morning.
It would explain why they walk all around the yard near the fence.
They’re measuring the distances, for what, I do not know.
The most frighting part for me is the time table in the corner, about my eating and sleeping habits.
I left the map where I found it, as to not draw any suspicion.
But… who is “Escap”?

 

Day 4:

I was woke very early this morning by a small pounding sound on the side of my bed.
I was Chica, who had snuck into my room. Her constant jumping up and down on the side of mattress startled me, but this was understandable since her little legs would not give her the strength to hop all the way up onto the bed.
After I felt a small bit of pity for her, I lifted her up because she said she had urgent news.
She told me about the other dogs plans to escape.
She said they were planning on tying dog blankets together, throwing them over the fence and then climbing up and over to freedom.
I asked her where they would be headed off to once they got over the fence.
She said the dogs had not thought that far ahead.
So this morning before work, I let the dogs outside to go to “tinky-poo poo”.
One dog would not come out of the room and hid under a desk. Later I would find out that this was a diversion because as I was trying to coax her out, the other dogs were dragging their blankets outside to fashion into a rope.
I let them back in (earlier than usual to throw them off) and quickly went back outside to find their escape rope, which was already thrown over the fence and ready to go.
As I took it down, Chica gave me a small wink.

Later I found out, her small wink ended up just being an eye booger and she didn’t even know I was there.

 

Day 5

I MUST be more cautious now!
When I woke up this morning, I had found one of my action figures’ heads, laying on the pillow next to me!
(Poor Rick Moranis from Ghostbusters)

This was clearly a warning that I had gotten too close to the the dogs plans of escape.
After calming myself, I went upstairs to make breakfast and let the dogs out to go to the bathroom.
As they left, before going completely past the door, each one would stop, turn, look me dead in the eye, point its paws up to its eyes, then point back to my eyes, two to three times, then turn back around and leave.
As I went back, I noticed Chica had not left, so when I went back to the room, I saw her sitting in the far corner of her bed, cowering, something besides extra fat, dangling from her neck.
They knew who ratted them out.
Chica’s scared now and I can’t blame her.
I will have to have a sit down talk with them today. Chica says it will make things worse, but I must try something.
I think things have gotten out of hand and I need to step in before someone gets hurt.

 

Day 6:

I think I have finally reached a peaceful solution with the dogs by asking for a meeting to hash things out.
During the gathering over canned food and water bowls for each, I addressed their concerns for more freedom and outside time. We came to the conclusion that I would be less in command and they would in turn, not try to escape and forgive Chica for ratting them out.
As a reward, I gave them a movie night with popcorn and Life Of Pets.
They also wanted to spruce up their living quarters with a poster, which I agreed to. It was an odd request, but easily granted.
I think things have finally calmed down and a more rational approach to us sharing the house until Jani returns, has now started.

 

Day 7:

SHAWSHANKED!
As I went to walk the perimeter of the fence this morning before letting the dogs out, I noticed small piles of dirt around the area.
As I looked further, I noticed some pieces of drywall were mixed in.
I quickly went into the dogs room and discovered a hole behind the poster they had asked for the previous day.
Worse yet, I caught one of the dogs still trying to wiggle through to the other side.
We are now on lockdown.
Bathroom breaks will be one dog at a time and yard time only be available to a single dog as to avoid more “plans” of escape.
One of the dogs has been scraping her metal bowl back and forth along the metal gate yelling “ATTICA! ATTICA!”.

I’ve also stopped one of the dogs from doing my taxes and running the animal library, just in case.

 

 

Day 8:

CHICA! It was Chica all along!

As I woke up this morning, I went upstairs to let the dogs out and felt something hard hit me in the back of the head.
When I woke up, I was tied to a chair, tape on my mouth!
When my eyes finally focused, Chica was pacing in front of me.
She looked at me and pointed to her “snitch” sign which was hung on her neck days before.
She then pointed to an ink pen and then to herself.
It seems she wrote the sign herself and hung it around her neck so I would pity her, leaving her outside the dogs room,
which gave her ample time to get supplies to dig a hole.
Later, I matched the writing on the sign to the writing on the map
I found earlier and the letters matched up.
It was HER that had made the timeline of my daily routine.
It was also her that tied the dog blankets together and through them over the fence. She WANTED me to find them, thereby getting all the dogs together in one room so they could dig through the wall, which was the original plan, since she knew the dogs wouldn’t have the arm strength to climb over a fence.
I’M SO STUPID!
I should have thought of that.
She even promised the dogs a movie night if they all helped her escape!
She then pointed to the clock, which made me understand, she was on a time schedule. She had to escape before Jani came home and I was mucking it up too much, so she had to improvise quickly, hence the clunk on my head.

As I finally wiggled out of the ropes (*note: dogs can’t tie knots very well because of their lack of really long thumbs.), I found an email from her with attached photos.
Apparently she is on a beach somewhere in Mexico……

 

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Fandom is dead. Can it get a reboot? 

Fandom: the fans of a particular person, team, fictional series, etc., regarded collectively as a community or subculture.

ManOfSteelScream

What used to be a community of fans has now become the HOA of Fandom and if you don’t like it THEN GET OUT BECAUSE YOU’RE THE PROBLEM!!! YOU’RE BEING MANIPULATED BY THE MOVIE AND I’M SMARTER THAN YOU SO I’VE COME DOWN FROM THE MOUNTAIN TO TELL YOU ALL ABOUT IT BECAUSE I’VE SPENT YEARS OF MY LIFE RESEARCHING FICTIONAL CHARACTERS!!

Before the Internet, if you were a fan of something, you had 3 ways to nurture it.

  1. Go to your local comic book store and look for like minded individuals.
  2.  Write an email to Starlog or one of the many other magazines about it
  3.  Go to a comic convention and try to find other fans

Now, with the Internet, you don’t even have to leave your couch. You can still find those people but beware. Heaven help you if you have a different opinion.

Now before I get started, I will admit, Man of Steel and Insidious are two movies that get my blood boiling and I’d be hypocritical if I didn’t mention how much I dislike them, but I can at least admit that, if YOU like them, we can still be friends. Sadly, that’s not the case for most places anymore.

I first noticed the slow destruction of Fandom around the time of the new Ghostbusters movie. Not a single shot was filmed before anonymous mouth breathers logged on everywhere they could to tell everyone how they felt, and if you felt differently?

Well then you were an idiot. No more questions needed.

Forums everywhere started to explode in the worst, nerdiest, knuckle dragging word fight that the World was embarrassed to witness.  The phrase “If you’re not with me, you’re against me” was pretty much the motto being used and used it was.

No longer did fans simply disagree. Now it was all out war. Simply saying you would wait to see the finished product before commenting meant you were complacent with the destruction of the media and it was all your fault. There was no grey area. You were the reason this movie marched into France and oh….how i wished I was kidding when I say that.

Instead of a simple movie coming out, apparently you would be FORCED to watch it and all other references to previous movies would be collected and burned in the town square.

This was a fact I sadly witnessed. People would leave hashtags of #notmyghostbusters because yes, you would be marched into the theaters by gun point and made to watch the movie while all of your previous Ghostbuster memories would be erased. There was no choice.

Honestly. Some of the postings that were written made this new movie feel like it was going to be a second Holocaust, mainly from people who probably had less than a 5th grade education, so maybe they didn’t get to that point in history yet.

Actors for the movie were now receiving death threats and having racial slurs posted on their social media pages. “Fans” (and I use the term loosely) were arguing with actors and past writers, such as Dan Akroyd and Ernie Hudson, and telling them that they weren’t “true fans” and were only shills now for the production company. If they didn’t come right out and declare the Ghostbusters movie an out and out tragedy,  then they didn’t deserve any respect they earned from making the very product those “fans” came to love which brought them to the forum in the first place.

Now we have Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

While trying not to post any spoilers, I believe I can say that the movie makes some twists and turns that makes you think differently about everything you’ve seen before. It touches on previous movies, like the prequels.

You remember the Star Wars prequels? Those 3 movies that grown men went to see and immediately started a blog just to tell you how bad they were?

I’ll even admit, I found them nowhere near as good as the original three movies. I found the script below average, quit racist and at points, the CGI was awful, but here’s the thing:

I don’t care if you like them, because that invents a reason for real fans to talk and debate. A point where we could come together and discuss our love for a galaxy far, far away.

In fact, that’s what I loved about The Last Jedi. It made me re-visit the prequels and see them differently. All I needed was time. Something apparently “fans” don’t have anymore.

After reading some comments in other Star Wars posts, it seems most people need everything spelled out for them, every character talked about and no surprises. I mean, NO surprises. Like Anchovies on a pizza for Michelangelo. There should be NONE.

Unless its a surprise “fans” argued and agreed about for the last 2 years. Then its ok.

You see, “fans” nowadays seem to think because they’ve watched a movie and bought the merchandise, they somehow OWN that movie. That even though they have zero experience in script writing, production, PR, acting or casting, they have a say in every movie they’ve seen, because hey, they bought an action figure and spent a whole weekend being non-productive and binged the whole franchise in a day, so that should be enough to have JJ Abrams phone number so I can fill his ear with my disgruntlement.

If that’s all it took to have a say in a movie, I’ll have a nice credit in any of the next movies that star Scarlet Johansson.

“Fans” seem to think that somehow, having a free blog or 100 followers, that they’re important enough to have their fantasies inserted into the media they profess to love, that is, until it doesn’t, then its stupid and off the rails and will likely crash and burn and have the production company go bankrupt!!!!

It’s like loving something so much, you smother and kill it while holding it too tight. Maybe ease up on your fandom there, Lenny.

I understand that certain movies or shows mean a lot to us. Here’s an example.

I love LOST. I have great memories of watching it with my wife and family. Memories I’d never trade. Looking up theories, discussing it on forums. Trying to talk about science and the paranormal with my kids when they asked questions about it. I even bought action figures (well, in-action figures since most didn’t have any articulation) and books and magazines. I would have been devastated if, for no reason, the entire thing was shown to be the dream of a special needs child staring into a snow globe. I had an “invested” interest in the show. I’d not only spent time, but also, money into the show, but here’s where I differ from the fear mongering nerd-nazis.

I’d get over it.

I would still have those toys. I would still have those DVDs. I would still have those memories and the one thing I wouldn’t do, mainly because I’m not a crazy person that can’t tell the difference from fantasy and reality, I wouldn’t write the actors and scream death threats at them. Or go around to every forum I could find to tell people how I hoped ABC would crash and burn and this would be the end all of everything, EVERYWHERE!! HERE COMES THE RAPTURE!!!

If a reboot happens, or another movie is made that gets tacked on, you STILL own what you own. Much like the Chicken Littles of the Right who yelled Obama would come take your guns, no one is coming to take your previously bought merchandise or memories.

I’m not sure where the exact point is when “fans” went from Corey Haim and Feldman in Lost Boys to gun toting, blood thumping, vein showing in the neck fanboys who yell in all caps that you’ve been manipulated by a film and are stupid for liking it.

After all, isn’t being manipulated by a film, the point of a film? The only person who should feel the need to have all their expectations met from a movie, are the the people who actually made the movie. Who wants to spend $12 on something you know everything about?

But then, who wants to spend $12 to watch something you know you’re going to hate?

Now you can’t throw a Porg without hitting an anonymous, crying “fan” who’s furiously typing from his dimly lit, basement dwelling about how some film should have never been made or the fact that its very existence encourages you to make a petition that would remove it from the canon.

(Look that up. Some unwashed, gorilla fingered movie Nazi wanted the last performance of Carrie Fisher, erased from the Star Wars universe and still had the nerve to call themselves a fan of the series)

I’m not sure Fandom can be fixed. I’d love to see it come back to its glory days of simple debates, but sadly, I just don’t see it happening. Not as long as anonymous keyboard cowards can sit in their stolen office chairs, ranting to everyone they can while giving scathing mad emojis on Facebook.

In this day of “Extreme or nothing”, where if a movie doesn’t change your life, it should be burned, pee’d on to get the fire out, then salt added to the Earth afterward so no reboots can be made, I think we’re too far out to sea to come back to shore. There are some great forums out there that still cater to manners and civility, but the fact you have to search them out, makes me more worried for the future.

Like finding small pockets of resistance.

Then maybe something CAN happen. After all, there was a certain country in Europe that survived with pockets of resistance. Given some time, if those vintage smelling, virginity still in mint condition, drama Nazis want to treat every new thing like a certain, horrific event from our past, we can defeat them and go back to the way things were.

And to those nerds out there that still understand the love of something and welcome new theories and debates, I only have one thing to say.

We.

Are.

Groot.

 

*the Author is well aware he is hypocritical in insulting people that have been insulting people, but he’s ok with it because those people are the worst and he’s pretty sure they can’t even read.

As My Brain Sees It – Children

brain

For the first time ever, I feel the need to say the following disclaimer. I in no way am making light of the young woman who was killed in Charlottsville . Her name was Heather Hyer. I didn’t even need to look that up. And as a guy who still can’t remember the correct date of his own wedding Anniversary 28 years later, I remember her name because it means something. But I’m a comedian, not a broadcast journalist and my intention is to make people laugh. So the following rant is just something I felt I needed to get off my chest. Nothing more.

Children,

It proves that sex will either lead to one of two things. STD’s or kids, and coincidentally, both of them have one thing in common. The more you have, the less you want.

A few days ago, there was a nice peacefully rally in Charlottsville. Well, about as peaceful as you can get when there’s a group of people chanting for genocide.

During the rally, someone decided to run their car into a crowd, killing a woman. He turned out to be James Alex Fields Jr., or as the Nazi party seems to be calling him, employee of the month. When the mother of the man accused found out about her sons involvement, she said, “”I try to stay out of his political views. I don’t really get too involved”. Now, some people may get upset about that, but to me, this is like being the parent of a 16 year old boy. “We hear sounds coming from his room, he’s up there all day and only comes down to wash his hands. We try not to get to involved.” Both sets of parents knew what was going on, but mentally knew, they weren’t up for the challenge of having to deal with it.

And know this. The mother of the woman killed is now getting death threats for speaking out, by, you guessed it, human beings who used to be kids.

What I’m saying is, sometimes, eventually, you have to say to yourself about your kids, “I don’t want to know.” And the same goes for kids.  I once came home from school early while my parents didn’t think anyone was there. After that, I knew, there were some things I shouldn’t want to know, even though I still see the image in my nightmares. Do you understand, even when I close my eyes, sometimes it’s still there! I didn’t want to that, daddy! Why? It was 1 o’clock in the afternoon!

Then there was the family who publicly disowned their child when they found out he was marching in Charlottsville. After telling everyone they despised his hateful beliefs, the father added “ my son, is not welcome at our family gatherings any longer. I pray my prodigal son will renounce his hateful beliefs and return home. Then and only then will I lay out the feast.”

Which at first, I thought, good for him, he’s standing his ground. Then second I asked myself, Who talks like that? It sounds like he’s taking away his throne from Robin Hood. “I renounce his entrance into thine kingdom until he get-ist his crap together.”

As much as I applaud that families stance on saying enough is enough, also noticed that he left a loophole. His child can come back if he stops hating black people and just hates the mittens made of yarn that Aunt Harriet keeps giving them year after year on Christmas. “No one can throw a decent snowball with yarn mittens, Harriet! Stop it! Just send us a check or a box of sample chocolates like everyone else!”

You see, as much as we try to teach our children the right things, some other things stick more. It’s like a piece of toast falling onto the floor. Sometimes you get lucky and the butter side stays up and other times, it lands butter side down. But you still pick it up in hopes that, maybe, you can salvage what there is, because that bread was in the oven a long time and even though it’s now dirty with things you don’t want near you, you still care about it.

trump – As My Brain Sees It

Donald-Trump-spars-with-Univision-journalist-Jorge-Ramos

Trump has been all over the news lately and with good reason.

He loves ratings. And like NBC’s America’s Got Talent, he assumes if he’s on almost every day of the week, all those ratings scores add up and makes him a good president, not understanding that it is not ratings that keep you on, it’s the charismatic characters you put on and Trump has all the charisma of an episode of Friends that just centers around Ross the whole time.

I actually don’t like making fun of Trump. I know I may lose some fans for it, but It’s not like I’m making fun of Jerry’s grandmother who owns too many cats and yells things at the  Mark Harman in NCIS because she thinks he can hear her.

There seems to be one accusation after another for our president these days. He’s like his own Russian nesting doll. As soon as we get rid of one allegation, there’s another one right underneath.

And I get it. A lot of people who voted for Trump aren’t racist, bigots. They were people who voted for Trump because they hated the other candidates.

Sort of like when your watching a horror movie and you start rooting for the killer because all the teenagers he’s stalking , are terrible characters and you want them gone.

The problem is, after November, the cops weren’t called in at the last minute and the guy wearing a terrible orange Micheal Myers mask with bad hair is still running around looking for victims.

So as I see it, some people still support Trump, but much in the same way they’re supporting your wife’s brother when he comes by for a hand out. You still like him, but some of the decisions he’s made lately, you not only question, but see them as how he got to where he is now. Still proud, but not proud enough to ask you for money and a place to stay for the next 4 years.

But sometimes you can only care for a family member so long before you realize they are an adult. They can make their own choices and you’ve got your own life to figure out, you can’t keep helping them any more.

So as only 35% of the country still sees him as a the killer, chasing down heathens and drug users, the other 65% have seen the killer is more like Inspector Clouseau, bumbling around the woods, stepping on rakes that keep popping up to hit him in the face.

But if I can give you any advice, it’s to the new minority of America, Trump supporters, it’s this.

Step outside your bubble and take a day to look around at other people.

Stop yelling all the negative parts of the Bible about who’s going to hell and crack open the pages that talk about loving one another as he has loved you.

Because in the end, once this horror movie is over and the lights come back on, we all have to walk out of the theater together and decide on what to see next.

And that’s how my brain sees it.

Podcast Link

Racism – How My Brain Sees It

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Racism.

White nationalists protested Friday night on the University of Virginia campus, which marks the first time 99% of those marching were even at a school since the 3rd grade. I say 99% because I’m a nice guy and giving benefit of the doubt.

But, whats new about racism?

Most times when you join a club, its fun and fresh and new. Like when you join the Shriner’s or the Lion Club or even the Boy Scouts. Here’s the rules. There’s a free brunch on saturday.

But when you join some Aryan nation, skinhead group, what exactly is the thrilling and new part? I mean, you pretty much know what you’re getting into. Long hours dipping torches into gasoline and Shirtless nights looking over some guys tattoo sleeve.

When you join a group like Shriners, you get new club business. “Hey, this week, we’re going to target helping out the new children’s hospital and also, we have a new fez cleaner for those hats.”

When you join a racist militia, why do you even have meetings? Is there that much new business from 1945? “Hey, everybody still hate colored people? OK, I guess we’re good. See you at the next meeting

The only way I can see why racists are the way they are, is by thinking it’s like meeting a new family for the first time when your adopted. Things are different, you know they’re going to be different and these people look nothing like me.

But adopted kids eventually get used to their new families while racists just keep pointing out how different their parents look and screw this, I found a few other kids who feel the same way, now I have to go buy 5 American flags to use as curtains and start buying as many guns as I can to make sure no one bothers me and new peaceful friends.

And why do racists keep holding up the Confederate flag? Its been a while since my high school history class, but if I remember right, the South lost. That’s like marching into another sports teams convention center, holding up the flag of the team that just got beat and yelling “We’re still #1”

No you aren’t. That’s why You don’t see Americans running around England declaring victory.

As a white male for most of my life, I’ve had it pretty easy. We all have. Louie CK mentions that, as a white guy, we can go anywhere in the world in a time machine and be ok. You can’t do that if you’re a woman or black. “Where you want to go, Margaret? Oh, I don’t know. How about back to the time I couldn’t vote.

This is the problem with our new administration people aren’t seeing. Its Like a fart in a crowded living room. Everyone smells it, but it’s not until someone speaks does everyone else start agreeing. Once you have someone telling cops to be rougher to suspects, Mexican people are rapists and Obama was the target of all your problems, it’s the not so level and shaved headed that start coming out of the woodwork, thinking its safe to start screaming about how Levon got the job ahead of because he’s black instead of realizing you didn’t get the job because your neck tattoo says, “Eat the rich”

And Understand. Trump is a racist. If he said half the things he usually does, but in a smoky late night bar holding a cigarette between his crooked fingers with about 3 inches of ash hovering over a whiskey he’s been nursing for an hour, you’d either ask the waiter for another table far away or start recording his conversations to tell your friends about on twitter. Only 1 and one half percent of Americans are in the military. By trump denying trans people for joining, our biggest and strongest military now has to start handing out dishonorable discharges to a certain group of people and we get to watch our military shrink like the dangle on a naked skinhead trapped in Alaska.

A cold, cold, Alaska.

I’m not here to stop racists from being racists. Some guy that does a podcast isn’t going to stop you from hating other people. But understand, I have a peaceful podcast and I can sit there recruiting people to do good works by talking to them. I’m not out marching with torches and pitchforks yelling about equality for my race, hoping to round up more people for the next Aryan nation arts and crafts festival.

So how about we tone it down their white mcwhiterson? Pick your knuckle dragging hands up out of the dirt, close your mouth and start breathing through your nose and go find someplace where you’re actually wanted. In fact, I hear Guam might be a nice place for you to visit here real soon

Podcast Link

A (almost) Year In The Life Of An Internet Meme

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As I write this, it will be about 2 weeks before our (Cassie,  my daughter and I) one year anniversary of “breaking the Internet” with our photos.
It all started out innocently enough.
I was on Facebook when I noticed a “racy” photo my daughter had posted. As with Facebook, under the photo, sometimes you can see comments made and this photo was no different.
Except for one thing.
The crude comments left underneath.
Being a passive/aggressive dad and understanding that arguing and getting upset with someone on the Internet would be futile, so I did the only thing I could think of.
Make fun of myself.
I decided to let the “boys” know, not only was I watching, but also, to show my daughter what it looks like when someone posts a “racy” photo who’s not really pretty. It was teasing her, but that’s the relationship we had.
Cassie was living 40 minutes away and this was how we checked in on each other. With jokes, so essentially, I was killing two birds with one stone.
We had some laughs, some of the boys laughed, others deleted their comments and left.
As the days went on, I posted a couple more photos, nothing really harsh, just to get a laugh and “checking in on her”, basically letting her know I was still thinking of her, even miles away.
Then, one day while watching tv, my wife came home and threw me a white tank top, laughing and saying, “Cassie posted a photo you HAVE to copy.”
So I found the photo and went into the bathroom to draw on some fake tattoos. It took me almost 20 minutes to copy her, as we were both laughing at how stupidly I looked in this too tight of a tank top and leaves on my head.
I posted it and we all had a good laugh. I really didn’t think anything more about it.
Then about a week later, I came home from work and my wife had the strangest look on her face. She said, “Have you seen your photo?”
I said, “No.” and then she showed me how multiple sites had started posting our Instagram photos everywhere. Mashable was the first. Then more. And more. Hundreds were posting them. My gmail exploded from people asking to use them, copyright issues, contracts, etc.
We spent the entire night answering emails and granting approvals. I was suddenly talking to people all over the World!
But there was a dark side to the fame.
You see, as much as I was being adored, my daughter was getting hate mail.
“Slut”, “shameful”, “Sinner”, even called a Satanist because of a Supernatural tattoo. Yes, from a tv show. People were emailing someone they didn’t know, telling her what they thought about her and calling her names. People were taking time out of their day, to bash a teenager who’s dad made her famous. I later learned she spent hours crying because of the mean things people were writing about her.
Now don’t get me wrong. There were smarter people out there who understood the joke. Parents who had kids, other teenagers, even celebrities like Ashton Kutcher and George Takei were “getting the joke” and posting about it.
My anxiety hit an all time high. I was not only worried about strangers coming to the door, but the safety of my daughter, not to mention how the guys at my work would take it.
I work with a lot of truck driving, blue collar, rough, drinking guys and while my private life friends knew I dressed in costumes for charity events, etc. I never worried about what they would say, my “work” life had no idea.
Monday came and so did the tv interviews. Luckily, Cassie was able to tell her side and show how it was just a way we teased each other. More and more people started to laugh with her. Yes, there was still the occasional “You should have taken her phone!” and “I wouldn’t let MY daughter dress like that!” comments from people who again, didn’t even know us.
Couldn’t tell me her birthday. Didn’t know the name of her first pet or even tell me what caused her incredible pain when she was little. So much pain in fact, she couldn’t move. We had to take her to the hospital, leaving one of the first times I broke down in front of her.
Let it be known, the Internet is full of armchair psychologists.
More days passed and the interviews kept coming. We had a blast skyping to people from all over the World. China had about 4 interviews. We did remote interviews with our local tv station that allowed us to talk to Australia and the UK.
Cassie was finally getting some real positive feedback and I was actually nominated as “Hero of the Week” by listeners of Premiere London.
My youngest daughter had a ball seeing my emails from Australia (“Champion”) and the UK (“Cheers”) and more email etiquette I was trying to learn on the fly.
I was also getting heartbreaking emails from kids.
“You remind me of my father”
“You make me wish my dad was still alive”
“I never knew my dad, but I like to think he might be like you”
You can’t just take those lightly.
Then came the tv appearance we wished would come. A new show was starting and wanted us on. (No, I won’t mention it here, just out of kindness.) They wanted us to “go dark”. Don’t post anything else, let them know what we were doing all the time and tell them more about our past. In other words, they wanted a broken family to fix.
I finally told them, that wasn’t us.
It could have changed our lives forever, what with the huge tv coverage. We were seen all over in other countries, but for some reason, here in America, tv appearances were not happening. They preferred to get the videos we already did with other Internet sites.
I just didn’t want them going through our past. I’ll admit, it wasn’t a perfect past. Who’s is? We’d had some problems, but we overcame them. Why dig them up again?
Fame or dignity. It’s a decision I’ll have to wonder about for the rest of my life.
Slowly the interviews died down. The emails went from 20-30 a day to about five. I would (sadly), wake up and immediately check my phone for messages. It was like a drug wearing off. Cassie was worse because no one was contacting her, just me, since I was the parent. Those days when nothing came, I’ll admit, I felt like crap.
Then the wave hit again. I had accumulated twice as many followers as Cassie and that was the new angle. I’d gone from 69 followers months ago, to over 120k. More interviews, (Australia, China, London, Germany) and every now and then, followers would email me photos of magazines from their country with our faces on them.
Cassie and I were flown down to film a small segment about Internet fame for the TD Jakes Show, and while we had a great time doing it and everyone was SO nice, the segment never aired.
Needless to say, we were a little heartbroken.
I was constantly asked how much we were making for all this coverage because “Chewbacca Mom” just got a book deal. “Chewbacca Mom” just got to ride in a car with JJ Abrams. “Charlie bit my finger” kid got a scholarship.
We were now being compared to other Internet Memes and trust me, we weren’t adding up. I’ll be honest.
All in all, we received about as much money as a small down payment on a mediocre hot tub or barely running car.
We helped Cassie with a bill and bought a bargain price tv from Walmart for Christmas.
It’s been a few months since then and things have really calmed. I still get the occasional email from someone saying “Hi” and our story still gets posted on Facebook about 20 times a month, but nothing like it used to.
As I look back on what happened and what could have been, I’ll be honest again. I wished it were more.
We tried to get on Ellen, as that would be the final straw in our dream, but nothing happened. I had AMAZING friends who tried to help us by tweeting and posting our story. I was really touched on how many people tried for us.
It was about this time I learned the “cas’me ouside, how ’bout dat” girl was to make about $20,000 by lip syncing a concert with a Q&A afterward.
That….uh…..that one really hurt.
Don’t get me wrong, I had a blast. Cassie and I experienced something few ever will. We talked to people from all over the World. Not bad for a guy who’s only been to Canada twice and Tijuana once (just to say I did).
It gave me an opportunity to start up a podcast, something I love doing, and also, meet some really great, new friends. Comedians and more. People I might never have worked up the courage to talk to.
I also had an adventure with my daughter. One we can talk about forever. The whole experience in fact, was one in a million for a parent and child.
My one regret is, well……me.
I wish I was better at keeping the fame.
Should I have said yes more? Should I have gotten an agent? Should I have NOT done something? So many questions I’ll have to live with, without ever knowing the answer.
As a parent, you want more for your children. You want them to not have to worry about things. You want them to have the best life.
And here I was, famous around the World. A guy who made the whole World laugh, in any language. A guy who was told that he “broke the Internet”
Yet here I am, seeing my sons car totaled by a reckless driver with no insurance and no way to help him replace it.
The guy dubbed “Selfiedad” who’s had a crack in his car window for months.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m still happy. I’ve had amazing opportunities to talk to great people and see my face in different countries magazines. Not many can say that, but as the song goes, “regrets….I have a few…”
What strikes me as one of the funniest things about the whole event is, that my mom and dad still don’t understand how big it was. They still treat it like it was an article in the local shopper magazine.
So while our anniversary comes near, I’ll start seeing “Facebook Memories” that were at the time, great, now though, I’m hoping they won’t be a painful “What if”.
Of course, if nothing ever happened, I’d never know about the woman with the autistic daughter, who shares our photos and has a precious laugh with her daughter.
Or the man who lost his daughter to a car accident, who laughed for the first time in months because of us.
Those are things happening all over the World, right now. People finding what we did, in a positive light and making them feel good.
How do you tell yourself you wished it never happened?
Someday, Cassie will have kids of her own and she’ll be able to show them.
“Yes, this is your grandpa….”
I want to thank everyone who was so kind.
Kind to me and especially kind to my daughter.
Friends who stood by me.
Friends (and family) who took my “celebrity” in stride.
Followers, who I call friends, that have stayed with me and those who have wished me well in emails, etc.
I’ve changed in so many ways because of this. I’m more aware of women’s rights. Gay rights. Humanity in itself. Things I would make fun of before, I now want to champion and help. That’s all because of the people I’ve talked with.
I wish everyone could have just one day of talking to people from around the World.
I really believe there would be more peace.
More understanding.
Less being afraid, leading to hate.
I’ve learned a good lot of us just want to laugh, be with family and watch sunsets.
I wish the next Internet Meme good luck and if I had any advice, I’d say, stay smart. Think about whats going on, but also, just enjoy it.
Enjoy the moment.
And of course, take pictures.

Getting Chastised For Caring

0523-machester-flag-mark-e-tisdale-14Earlier this week, a coward chose a concert filled with teenagers to enact his political/religious views by planting a bomb and killing 19 people.
Children.
Children who simply went to a place to have fun.
It shouldn’t matter where it happened. It shouldn’t matter the country, the city or even street. It was a heinous act that took the lives of children.
There have been many evil acts like this throughout the centuries, but this particular act hit me harder than most, mainly because the children targeted were about the same age as my children.
I can feel bad for adults who have been killed, but I can’t be in their shoes as much as I can being a parent and seeing a loss.
So as a small act ( and I mean, literally, the least thing I could do) I posted a photo of the Manchester flag and simply stated “No parent should ever have to bury their child”.
Well, no good deed goes unpunished apparently because no sooner than I posted it, I was told how bad that was to do.
“Awful.You are only sensitive to European explosions.How sensitive are you to the explosions in the Middle East?More than 300 people died in an explosion in Turkey.You are not sensitive to this, but you are sensitive to European explosions. Whatever happens #manchester :((“
Now, I’ll be the first to admit it. I don’t like it when people post signs of solidarity, mainly for the attention from facebook or as a status thing, and I’ll also admit, at times, I’ve done the same thing.
“Hey, everyone. I feel bad also. Look at me feel bad”
I’ve been witness to people saying they’d do anything to help a charity, but when I bend over backwards to get them to come down to our event, suddenly everything under the sun stops them.
Or they “simply forgot”.
That’s fine. We each walk our own path and have to live with our decisions, but I have never attacked someone for caring.
I’ve rolled my eyes at certain people who I know will say something to show everyone on their social media page that they care, but that’s pretty much where it ends. I’m not them and I don’t know what they’re going through.
But to tell someone they are awful for caring? At a moment when I felt emotional hit by something I could relate to?
In a world where people can anonymously bully, critique, say awful things and basically just be a dick to people anywhere at anytime, telling someone they aren’t caring enough about everything is almost as bad as the act itself.
What you’re doing is telling that person that you think they are not only caring wrong, but simply showing ignorance of the world around them and if it happens again, they’ll just look foolish.
Here’s the deal. There’s a small arrow that faces down on your laptop. Maybe the next time you see someone posting something you don’t agree with, just push that little button and go right on by. If your first instinct is “I’ll teach them!”, ask yourself, is it worth it?
Is arguing on the internet how you really want to spend the precious minutes you have on this Earth? Is posting hateful or mean statements to someone you’ve never met really how you want to be known? What if they were your last words? What if a comet hit your desk and you died and those mean, spiteful words, were the last ones you posted? What if that other person was going through something and you didn’t know? What if their anger on the internet was just an outlet because a loved one died or a relationship ended? Are you helping or hurting? Are you a fast lane to human progress or a speed bump?
I’m not a wordsmith by any means, but I hope if anything, people get out of this rambling is, I think we’re done. I think we’ve reached maximum hate on the internet. We did it! GOOD JOB! Now that that goal was reached, how about we back off a little and start on the other side. Let’s start trying to understand each other a little more or at the very least, instead of telling people how wrong they are, work on yourself and let them walk their own path. You’re not a teacher. You’re not a guru. You’re just another human being. telling someone who posted something wrong, by telling them they’re wrong.
Below was my response. It’s probably not perfect, but I wrote it, so I should stand by it.
Well I guess I should address this since you seem to be pretty mad at a person you’ve never met, so simply put, I posted a photo of a country’s flag that just had a bomb go off and kill some kids. I’m sensitive to ALL killings of innocent people. Every single one. No innocent person deserves to die for someone else’s political stance. But since you know me so well, you’ll know I’m also a parent, and AS a parent, this bombing hit me harder than others, because it involved kids that are my own kids age. I can sympathize with the grieving parents. That doesn’t mean this is the only killing I care about just because I posted a photo during a time where I was emotionally hit by something going on. Should I post a photo of a countries flag after Every innocent person somewhere in the world is killed? That would be a pretty sad Instagram considering it happens every day, all over the world. And am I to blame about not knowing about Turkey? I work 40 hours a week at one job and more on another one. I have 3 kids and bills to pay. I can’t watch the news 24 hours a day in the “hopes” I catch all the killings from around the world, to make sure I memorialize every single one. I understand your anger, but honestly, to attack someone you’ve never met who simply posted something at a time where they were in distress about kids being killed, seems awfully mean. I hope one day no one EVER has to post ” thoughts and prayers” or post that they’re sorry because innocent people were killed, but sadly, I don’t see that day coming any sooner. If I were you, instead of attacking people who feel bad about something, generously explain about another situation and maybe ways to help. Spread good in the world. Hate is to quick. It’s too easy to criticize. We need more people who can help, not hinder the world into a new era of kindness. I hope you understand everything I blathered on about. I’m used to making people laugh, not understand, so forgive me. And if you knew people in Turkey that were hurt or killed, I’m sorry for them as well. I hope one day we meet so we fully understand where each person is coming from. That’s the only way this world will know peace.