Tuesday, May 19

A History of Fake Fishing

BELIEVE IT OR NOT, I’m not much of a fisherman. This is in spite of growing up by the beach. The thing about fishing is that you can’t swim if people have hooks in the water, and I hate almost nothing as much as I hate sitting next to a body of water without being able to get into it. This is a real symptom of growing up next to beaches. Fuck fishing.

I also scared myself a lot as a kid with a book called Take Care of Yourself (pre-WebMD relic!) that had really simple step-by-step instructions for dealing with minor to major ailments. I read over and over again the entries about fishing hooks lodging themselves into your body and the standard treatments for different types of fish hook-related injuries (flesh – push it through! clip off the barb! nbd!; eyeball – SEE A DOCTOR). I’m very uninterested in the sorts of injuries that require another injury in order to relieve them: jarred bones that need to be rebroken or set back into place, bites from poisonous animals that must be bled or suctioned in order to prevent toxins from spreading, Goddamn fish hooks in my skin and eyeballs. 

I also don’t like bait.

Still, I have been fishing a lot, usually when a boy I like invites me, and I’ve actually dedicated a great deal of my life to pretend fishing. I present to you, A History of Fake Fishing.


My family lived on an Air Force base in Nevada for a while, which is a desert FYI, so there is not much fishing. Someone had a great idea to put a bunch of fish in the pool, though, and we all got t-shirts for it. I wish I still had that shirt. My brother had his for about half of a century. (It says "MONSTERS IN OUR POOL" btw)



This game actually sucks, so if a baby asks you to play say no, but I liked it because I liked the mechanical sound of the inner workings and the clomping sound the fish made as they opened and shut their mouths, plus I loved the tiny, doll-sized fishing rods. My Barbies got a lot of use out of those.

A lot of my peers (old ass millenials) are really nostalgic about the classic PC game The Oregon Trail, which I did play and die a lot in, but my heart really belongs to its later follow-up The Amazon Trail because obviously The Amazon Goddamn Rainforest > Oregon. You could spear fish and catch fish to eat or sell or whatever, but mostly you would catch dumb logs and electric eels and skates which would electrocute and kill you! Way cooler than dysentery.


In addition to doing boring outdoors things for boys (like fishing) hoping that they will like me more for it, I also played World of Warcraft as a teen. I actually sort of liked it, but the thing that turns me off to video games is that you often actually have to try. Games are designed to challenge you in order to earn rewards, and that challenge is why people like them. That shit does not work on me, though. I don’t care enough about fake rewards to try. Instead of questing and grinding, I’d always get into my level 20’s and then just goof off. This included a lot of disrobing in public places, trolling Barrens General, and fishing.

 

I was introduced to Mario Party a few years ago, which is easily one of the funnest things on the planet, and it instantly became one of my favorite kinds of parties. I used to play Mario Party BY MYSELF. Party of ONE. My favorite mini-games were the ones that didn't require skill, because I'm lucky and lazy. JUST DUMP COINS ON ME DONKEY KONG. The best mini-games involved fishing.


My current favorite time-suck is Animal Crossing. Again, this is a game that requires no skill and no challenge. You can do whatever you want because there are no points and there are no consequences. I think my love for this game says a lot about me as a person, but also there is something genuinely peaceful about Animal Crossing, and I'm not the only one who's noticed. There is a lot you can do and collect in Animal Crossing (bugs, bones, mixtapes), but I prefer fish.

Sunday, May 10

YOU ARE SIXTEEN GOING ON SEVENTEEN

Last week my old friend Catherine sent me a letter I wrote to her after having moved to North Dakota. I mostly grew up in Florida, but a month after I turned 16, in the middle of my sophomore year of high school, my family moved to where I still live today: Grand Forks, North Dakota. This letter contains my first impressions, some misconceptions (I have no idea why I thought to paint GF’s downtown like a big city or why I thought the Empire had shows??), some candid discussion of my forever unrequited love for a high school marching band drummer known as Green Shoes Boy (whom I've written about here before) and my looming virginity. This letter may be triggering or offensive just because of how incredibly and painfully 16 it is. Read at your own risk.




Monday, May 4

Best Non-Considered UND Mascot Suggestions

The University of North Dakota is currently in the process of retiring and forgetting their old, racist ass nickname. In some bizarre act probably meant to loosely disguise the fact that they already have a new nickname chosen, they thought it would be a good idea to have the public submit suggestions for a new nickname. These suggestions culminated in 200+ pages of suggestions to be considered and 600+ pages of suggestions that will not be considered. The latter is an utterly insane document that can be summed up perfectly as “an absolute fucking shit show.” Kiah and I skimmed the list and picked out some gems, but you can peruse on your own here.

Alligators “we are green”
Bush Did 9/11
Camel Cats “is just a cool name”
Duck Butter
ghjhfjhf
Grande Forks “like the towne but more elegant”
Green Beans
Jan Orvik
Kumquats
MORTH DAKOTA “a strong name”
Pancakes
Tall Strands of Grass “Teaches literacy due to long name"
Test Rob Laptop

Wednesday, April 15

A Dang Poem


Wings by Stephen Berg

In the modest plot I see them
kneeling to pick tomatoes, yanking weeds,
squatting between rows of broccoli, squash, beans,
Bill’s pulled-back pony tail, Cathy’s fine ass,
two sheds Bill built, rakes bunched against a wall –
the Jew I am had to buy a Badminton set
for the clear space of grass next to their garden
where net, poles, stakes, chalk lines would be,
then shuttlecocks, no plastic, real feathers only,
at least six rackets – every summer
out there eating and drinking we would play hard,
& I, the oldest, I must say, beat the living shit
out of everyone – adults, teenagers, kids –
a great pro blessed with wings – in my head.

Monday, April 6

Coming Out

 It's opening day (mostly) and I'm ready to announce my 2015 Baseball Gang!


We did it everyone! We did it. And it was not easy. I want to thank all of my friends for their support during this time. You made this dream a reality and I couldn't have done it without all of your gentle guidance. I really had to make some sacrifices here, including the fact that I don't love these colors and I've never been to Toronto. I have yet to find a shirt that I'd actually wear, which is a problem because almost nothing about baseball matters to me as much as outfits do. But this is my team. I chose it and I'm going to be A Fan (assuming there's like, an app I can download that will keep me up to date on things).

Here are the reasons I chose the Blue Jays.

Bird. I like birds and I care about mascots. I really wanted the Orioles but all of the orange is just unforgivable. Maybe I settled for a Blue Jay, but it's fine. Blue Jays are pretty rad to see IRL, probably cooler than an Oriole, so it's fine.

Players I Would. Are the Blue Jays the most bearded team in baseball? I don't know. I'm just asking. I Googled and saw there were many beards, many other potential QT’s (I’ll have to watch a game to know for sure). I'm not even a super beard fangirl really, but I am a big fan of Daniel Norris and his yuppie hippie bullshit. Remember how on 30 Rock Jon Hamm was a huge moron but he was super hot so he got away with stuff? like they just gave him a medical degree and cops would tear up his tickets and everybody just pretended he was right even when he wasn't? This is how I feel about Daniel Norris. Also who doesn't like a hot/weird pitcher?

Canada's Ok. I like Canada. I like Canadian music and television programming and beer. They’re doing ok up there.

Drake is from Toronto. Do you think he goes to baseball games? I don’t know, but he does have a hat.

They Won Twice in a Row! I’ve been searching for a kewl vintage shirt to wear and I noticed from some sweatshirts that in the 90’s the team won the World Series twice! Way to go, guys. We did it. Twice.

Fanbase Seems Pretty Chill. These are definitely the kinds of people I want to be around at games.

I can't make any claims like "It's going to be a good season" because I honestly have no idea. I've been meaning to read some preseason prediction thing but I'm trying to finish this article about toilets first. However, I can say that it's going to be a fun season of me looking like an asshole and pretending to know what I'm talking about, which everybody always loves. It's how I got both of my degrees and what I do for a living. Play ball dudes!