The Shape of Things

shape

Most of us obsess about body image – especially around the New Year resolution time of the year.  I can’t say that I ever really gave it a lot of thought although some of you might argue that I probably should have.

For most guys, our healthy egos keep us firmly planted in the the ‘Damn, I look good‘ fantasy, so we tend not to shame ourselves about our shape or about putting on a few extra pounds as much as the stronger sex does.

My Uncle would joke that his doctor tells him that if he were an inch taller, he’d be round – then we’d laugh and laugh…and eat bacon cheeseburgers.

People come in all shapes and sizes, and no matter how many tofu burgers or yoga classes they attend, they ain’t getting any taller or making their legs longer.  I really admire their tenacity and dedication though.

My overall size and shape hasn’t changed much in the past 20 or 30 years, not because of any stringent ritual of healthy diet and exercise, but probably because God figured going grey at 30 and having a bad complexion were enough of a burden for one guy.

I can pretty much always buy the same size pants off the rack – wider than long, but consistent.  I always figured my body shape was pretty normal.

That is, until I took a trip to China.

In China, I was lucky enough to have a business suit custom tailored from scratch – every measurement and seam was made just for my less than perfect body.

I picked out the style and the material, then the tailor went to work, measuring stuff that I figured he had no business measuring, but what did I know? I’ve never had a suit made just for me before.

tailored-suit

The tailor hand-delivered it to my hotel room but I didn’t get to try it on before I flew home.  When I did, the jacket was perfect – shoulders fit beautifully, buttons did up without me having to suck in a lot of air, arm length left just enough room for shirt cuffs. Perfect!

But there was something wrong with the pants.  The length was exactly what it should have been, but when I pulled them up they’d just slide right down – in fact, they wouldn’t stay up at all unless I cinched in the belt.

The tailor must have mis-measured my waist somehow.  Funny, since the waist is generally the most important measurement in pants, right?  But that really wasn’t it either – the did fit around my waist properly.  They just didn’t fit but they still fit.

I don’t wear suits a lot, but every time I’d wear this one, the pants just wouldn’t stay up on their own.  Then it finally dawned on me.  The pants were tailored to my exact shape…

old-ass

Apparently I have no ass!  The pants slide off because there’s nothing there to hold them up.  I hate that tailor!  All the pants off the rack have a built-in butt, so I never noticed this deformity until that guy in Shanghai exposed it in his own passive way.

I suppose in the grand scheme of things, a flat butt isn’t the worst body issue one could have.  Maybe if I wore high-heels, it would perk up a bit.

Twerking is definitely off my bucket list, though.

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Breaking Bad-der

My dark side has led me to this.  I just watched the entire Breaking Bad series on Netflix, and unassuming Mr. White was on to something big!  This was a guy I could relate to.  In fact, the similarities between us are remarkable!

  • Just turned 50
  • full on mid-life crisis
  • Spending way too much time in our underwear
  • Look awesome in sunglasses and a goatee

Walter White

Heisenberg

Other than his health issues, we’re practically the same guy.  Heck, we both even have a Brother-in-law who works in law enforcement.

Naturally, Walter White’s little foray into entrepreneurship ended badly for him, but I think I figured out what his problem might have been.

He chose a product that was lucrative, but meant dealing with the most unsavory and unpredictable group you’re ever likely to run across. That was his fatal flaw…literally.

My plan is a bit more pedestrian that cooking crystal meth, but under recent municipal legislation, just as likely to get me busted by ‘The Man’.  The upside to dealing in things of an illicit nature is people who want your product will pay big bucks to get it, and are motivated to keep their yaps shut about where they got it.  “Loose lips sink ships” as they say.

The key is finding a product in high demand, no one else is making, and can be distributed quietly without raising suspicion.  The answer was right under my feet – herbicides.

Thanks to heavy political pressure from the environmentalists, our local governments banned all types of residential weed killers.  The herbicides disappeared off store shelves faster than half-priced foam fingers at a Miley Cyrus concert.

One thing the government should have learned from the early years of prohibition, is that demand will always be there, and when something is suddenly made illegal, felonious characters come out of the woodwork to fill the need and make a pant-load of cash along the way.  This is where I come in.

Homeowners are faced with few options now that the Panda-lovers outlawed lawn sprays.  They can get down on their hands and knees, pulling those nasty yellow weeds out by their roots, or they can give up and surrender to this plight to their grass.  It’s in their dirt stained, desperate fingers that I will deliver their sacred nectar.

Contraband dandelion killer will be the next crystal meth for my community.   I even have my own ‘Jessie’ to help me with distribution.  There’s a little kid who wanders around the neighbourhood all day with nothing to do.  He seems to know everybody and would never be suspected by the tree-hugging police.  He’ll give out some small samples.  Maybe even spray an entire lawn as a show of our awesome power over weeds.

Poor desperate gardeners will come begging for more.  One squirt and they’ll be hooked!  Demand will outstrip supply, which will drive up the price. Economics 101, right?  I might have to move my operations from my garage to a mobile unit to stay ahead of the green cops…a Winnebago?  Yeah, I can see it now, cooking my special blend, hidden in plain sight, maybe at an unsuspecting campsite where the transient population is used to looking the other way.

I’ll have to move my product around.  Too many perfect lawns in any one neighbourhood will create suspicion. It’ll be important to stay ahead of the nature fuzz.  I might even have to leave my own lawn a semi-dead weed haven just to throw off their scent – just like the way Walter drove that Aztec around even though he could afford a Ferrari.  It’s a sacrifice I’m prepared to make to stay ahead of them.

My plan is fool-proof.  Nothing can stop me!  After this long winter, everyone will pay whatever price I set for my secret herbicide, to ensure they have the best looking lawns around.  Balancing my fame against total anonymity will be the real challenge. This whole plan should keep me busy until mid-June when the current crop goes into hibernation.

Hmm.  Let’s see – it’s almost May now.  With the new equipment and raw materials I’ll need, and with the free samples to get the word out, giving my ‘Jessie’ his share, I think I should just about break even….maybe that’s no better than breaking bad, now that I think about it.

I’m sure something else will pique my interest – I just started watching Dexter.

 

 

 

 

 

The cruelest “ism” of all

They roll their sarcastic little eyes while they try to explain to you for the 10th time what ‘tweeting’ is.  That look is deliberately designed to make you feel stupid.  And the kids are very good at it.   Don’t you just want to smack them?

I get this treatment a lot lately – not so much from my kids, although I did get some attitude last week during a family card game.  Good thing too, since I didn’t have a topic to blog about this week…Thanks ‘C’.

It seems that the most unchecked ‘ism’ out there is ageism.  That’s right – being treated unfairly, rudely, rejected, or outright ignored because of ones age.

The big problem here is that the age stereotype just gets worse with each passing day.  Let’s face it; you’re not going to get any more black, short, sexed (well, maybe a little), ethnic, or whatever, but you are definitely going to get older.

One friend always points out that getting older is better than the alternative…funny guy!  I want to smack him too.

I have a particular issue with other people who are already at this age, or are close enough that they should know better.  I thought we were supposed to support each other.

And we should stick together, right?  We should run out and get a great car insurance discount then brag about to a bunch of 20 somethings.

I was at an interview recently, and as it was winding down, I asked the gentleman across from me if there was anything in my application that was a problem for him.  He said the only potential issue was that I was ‘over qualified’.  Over qualified?  I thought being more qualified for a job was a good thing, but we all know what that really means, don’t we? It means we’re too old and can’t learn new things.  That we’re hard-coded to an old way of doing things and are too inflexible to learn a new job.

The kicker is, this guy was roughly my age. Way to stick up for your fellow discriminatee, dude!

That’s something else that is a complete ‘no-no’ for our generation.  We’re not allowed to say certain things, are we?

‘Yo! What up!’ is completely unacceptable when addressing your neighbour while putting out the garbage in your housecoat and slippers.

You can never say ‘That’s badass’ when describing a friends new golf club or riding lawn mower.

If someone is planning a long road trip to the coast with their kids and dog, you’re not allowed to say ‘That’s Cray Cray’.

You’ll never see anyone ‘Twerking’ at a curling club dance.  Okay, that one is probably a good thing…no one wants to see that.  Besides, there might be hip injuries.

But we should be free to do it if we like, right?  No discrimination.

I tried to do a ‘selfie’ but it just came out creepy…and I don’t know who I’d send it to anyway, but I should be allowed as long as all those teens are doing it, right?

Maybe that’s the key to this whole ‘ism’ problem.  We need to normalize behavior that might not fit our social norms.  Not because we really want to share photos of our lunch on Facebook, or ‘hashtag’ the Air Supply concert we’re at, but because we deserve the right to do those things that suppress us.

I could be the Rosa Parks of middle-aged men!  Who’s with me???

Oh wait – there’s a patio furniture sale on at Lee Valley this week.  Maybe we can fight for injustice next weekend…