Publishers are just Jealous of my Skills.

I’m thinking about having another go at self-publishing. All the publishers I have submitted to just can’t seem to bring themselves to accept my genius . . . . I’m pretty sure they are all jealous of my skills . . . 

No, I really don’t think that. 

My stories are an odd humor. And although they may be entertaining to some (a very few some), I know there are some rough spots to the writing. I don’t see a publisher wanting to take a chance on my stories, so I may have another go at self-publishing. 

I’ve published two different story collections in the past. I didn’t quite make the Best Sellers list, but I was happy that there were a few people, who weren’t my friends or family, who actually enjoyed the books. I carried a 4.5 star rating on Amazon out of about forty reviews, not to mention I made dozens of dollars.

I think I may pick some of my favorite stories (I have around 120 or so to choose from) and re-work them a bit. Then put them in a sort of greatest hits of sorts.

Anyhow, those are my thoughts for this moment. Has anyone out there done any self-publishing? Any success? 

Jesus Loves Me or Highway to Hell.

It’s inevitable. The song that your daughter will sing infront of her preschool class during show and tell will not be “Jesus Loves Me” or Barney’s “I Love You” which she has heard no less than a thousand times.

The song your daughter will choose for her impromptu solo will be “Highway to Hell”, which she had only heard for the seven seconds it took you to vault over the mounds of boxes in the garage to reach the blaring radio and switch the station so that she wouldn’t end up singing “Highway to Hell” to her preschool class.

Living life as an Airhead.

I’m absent minded, an airhead if you prefer. I’m not stupid. I can think quite logically. But my mind is always going in so many directions that I often forget to remember things that I’m not supposed to forget.

It makes me seem forgetful, but I’m really not. I’m just so preoccupied with stuff like my idea to market underarm deodorant for dogs, that I just never remember to remember things in the first place.

This constant irrelevant brain activity can also distract me in the middle of tasks, and leave me confused as to which step of a process I was on.

For the most part I’ve learned to live with it . . . . Or perhaps those around me have learned to live with it and now compensate for my air-headedness.

For your entertainment, I have thrown together a list of things that can occur in the life of someone afflicted with air-headedness. 

1. I have, on more than one occasion, left the house and discovered at some point thereafter that I was wearing two different shoes. 

The embarrassment level that is the result of such an oversight can vary depending on (a) just how different the two shoes are (two different styles of brown shoes is much better than one white tennis shoe and one black hiking boot) and (b) where I am going with my mismatched shoes on (a trip to the store for bread is much preferable to standing on a stage with my daughter at a high school sports awards ceremony with one leather dress shoe and one corduroy slipper).

2. I never know where my wallet is. 

Yes, I’ve been told by many people that I need to just pick a place and put it there EVERY time I walk in the door. It doesn’t work.

Losing my wallet is so common place that sometimes when we are about to leave the house, my children begin looking for it before I have even declared it was missing. 

I lose it so often that I am afraid to keep things like money, credit cards, and my drivers license in it. I figure losing just a credit card or just my drivers license is better than losing everything that was in the wallet. However, I do feel silly carrying around an empty wallet at times.

3. I am terrible with names. I can remember the names of family members and close friends, but nearly everyone else ends up getting an assigned name that I can use when referring to them. 

Such names include: 

“Natalie’s friend who is always smelling the back of her hand”

“Lady at church who sounds like she is saying cheesus instead of Jesus when singing a solo”

“The guy from work that smells like popcorn”

4. Sometimes I jump in the shower and forget that there is a certain order to the body washing process. Without thinking, I will wash my butt first, leaving me with the choice of getting a second washcloth to wash my face, or finishing the shower without the aid of a washcloth. 

Or in a worst case scenario, I realize my shower order error AS I’m washing my face with the same washcloth that was scrubbing my butt just moments before. . . . in which case I get out of the shower, dry off, dress, select a new washcloth, undress and begin the whole showering process all over again as if the first shower debacle never took place.

Spammers are pretty dumb.

I constantly get emails and comments from different websites and services that professs to be seeking blogs that have the following and influence that the Single Family Asylum commands.

I used to get excited about such correspondence, that is until I actually started reading them a little more attentively.

Some would say, “I can tell that your blog has a lot of good information that would be useful to parents and families.”

Really? I write about vomit and poop. I write about my inability to control my children. I write about my wife throwing a coffee mug at my head. 

You spammers are dumb. You would be a lot more effective if you actually read a post or two.

I guess spammers don’t bother me all that much. It’s not hard to delete emails and comments. The problem, however, is that if and when I actually get contacted by a legitimate organization, the chances that I recognize and respond are very small. 

Maybe I’ve already deleted that one offer that would have rocketed my blog to global blog dominance. 

I hate my lawn.

I hate my lawn. 

I’ve heard other guys say that, but they were referring to the fact that their lawn wasn’t perfect. I hate my lawn because it exists.

My wife doesn’t realize it, but I don’t plant pine trees all around our property because I love pine trees. I plant pine trees all around our property because pine needles kill grass. Dead grass doesn’t need to be mowed. 

I hate mowing. Mowing is such a waste of time. Time I will never get back.

My mowing lines aren’t straight. That’s partly due to the fact that mowing is so boring. To make it funner, I pretend that my lawnmower is a getaway car and I’m being chased around the yard by the cops. 

When I get tired of running from the police, I mow all the areas left where the police didn’t chase me.

I hate weed whacking too. I hate weed whacking even more than mowing ever since the “barefoot weed whacking toe massacre” incident. Now I make sure to wear shoes.

Maybe I’ll like my lawn more when I retire. Maybe then I will actually like time spent mowing. But until then . . . . I hate my lawn.

What’s Wrong with this Camera?

Years ago when my wife and I purchased our first digital camera, I quickly began to notice a trend in our photos. Whenever a picture was taken of my daughter Natalie, she always seemed to have a distorted goofy expression on her face.

Being a new technology, I thought that maybe there was some sort of “goofy expression enhancer” setting. But no matter how much I searched, I could find no such setting. I was almost ready to return the camera and get my money back.

Several years and hundreds of goofy faced picures later, I’ve finally come to the conclusion that there is nothing wrong with the camera . . . . There is something wrong with the goofy child.

The Path of Least Resistance.

I remember being so excited when I found out I was going to be a dad. My wife and I could hardly stand waiting the nine months it took for my first daughter to arrive.

But now when I think about it, it’s almost as is if that that after your children are born, you spend the rest of their lives trying to make it seem as if they didn’t exist.

If they cry, you stuff a pacifier in their mouth to silence them. If they are running around screaming and breaking things like idiots, you try to find some quieter, calmer activity that will occupy them. Or even send them to a “time out”, which not only quiets them but makes them disappear as well.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my children to death, but I can’t deny that I tend to react to them in whichever way I determine will make them quietly disappear the fastest. 

As they get a little older, this reaction is often what I call “the path of least resistance”. Sometimes I will try to disguise the path of least resistance by calling it “letting them learn from the consequences of their decisions”. At least then I can assign a methodology to my not wanting to engage in an arguments with my kids.

When a child wants something that might not be the best for them, I have to consider if the bad result of letting them have what they want is so awful that I want to endure the tantrum involved with telling them they can’t have it? Sometimes the answer is no.

I try hard not to give in to complete apathy as a parent. . . . . but I don’t always succeed. 

Six year old Hannah: “Can I have a gallon of gasoline?”

Me: “Wellllll, I guess. But take it to your room and play with it.”

A lot of times it is my wife who alerts me to just how far down the path of least resistance I have travelled.

Annoyed wife: “Why on earth would you give a gallon of gasoline to a six year old?”

Me, second guessing my decision as I answer: “Ugh. . . because she asked for one?”

Even more annoyed wife: “Well if she asked for a basket of hand grenades would you let her have that too?”

Me trying to sound logical: “No. Hand grenades are expensive and much louder than the whining I will get when I tell her no. 

Sometimes I will give them what they want to quiet them, but I will add “but just this once” to make myself feel like caving in isn’t a regular occurrance. 

Six year old Hannah: “can I have a gallon of gasoline?”

Me: “I guess, but just this once.”

Other times I will give in to the path of least resistance, but only with a compromise to their request. This way I feel like I still have some control.

Six year old Hannah: “Can I have a gallon gasoline?”

Me in control: “Hmmmmm, no but  you can have a quart of gasoline. A gallon would be just too dangerous.

Confusing game worlds with the real world.

Sometimes I like to play games on XBox to relax. There is one particular game where in a post-apocalyptic world, you have to collect items to make and repair your weapons. One of the items that you need, but can be hard to find, is a roll of duct tape.

Yesterday while cleaning in the basement, I opened a cabinet door to find a roll of duct tape. For a few moments I got really excited . . . . . Then I realized . . . . wrong world.

In the real world it’s just a roll of duct tape.