Tag Archives: Satire

When Is The Right Time To Start Crushing Your Children With Pressure?

Today I found myself giving my son a pep talk. My words were the result of my expectations, and I was communicating them in a motivational fashion. It went a little bit like this….. “Son, don’t be allergic to peanuts!! I know you’re too young to understand right now, but your inability to consume peanut butter will put a real strain on this family. We eat peanut butter on toast almost all of the time. I love peanuts son!!! Not the way I love you…. I love you more, but I do love peanuts and peanut butter son, and I need you to not have a peanut allergy. Do you understand???” We were about to give him peanut butter for the 2nd time in his life (which they say is when the allergy will show up). He’s 16 months old.

I’m certain my son didn’t understand the full extent of what I was saying. He’s a pretty smart kid, but not the ‘I know how to talk’ kind of smart. Not yet anyways. He looked at me when I gave the speech, so I know he was listening. I also know that I was holding a cracker at the time of the speech, and he really likes crackers, so I’m not sure if he was focused on Daddy, or simply waiting for me to feed his bottomless pit of a stomach. As I was talking, I felt myself transferring my pressure and anxiety on to his little shoulders. Almost like it was in slow motion, I could feel the disapproving looks of my wife, mother, sister and 3 month old nephew, who were all in the room. Was it too soon? Is he not ready to handle the pressure? Was I wrong?

Parents usually suck at life, and what’s the point of having kids if not to try to make them suck less than we do. We pressure our kids. Whether we mean to or not, we just do. We have to. Somehow if our kids end up not as completely stupid as we all are, then we feel that we’ve redeemed ourselves for our miserably disappointing lives. We can then take FULL credit for their achievements and accomplishments.

I’ve been watching the Olympics a lot this week. What do you notice when you watch the Olympics?? A lot of kids under a lot of pressure. Not only from their parents, but signing up for the Olympics means you get pressure from everybody else’s parents too. Especially if you’re from the same country as them. (The media has the nerve to get on Patrick Chan for not winning a Gold in Figure Skating. He won a Silver, which is awesome, but that’s not good enough for certain rotten cheese doodle eating members of the Canadian Sports Media, but that’s another story). For them to be some of the world’s best athletes, they have to be under pressure. Oh, I know what you’re thinking…. ‘They all put themselves under that pressure because they are so dedicated to their craft’. Sure, that’s probably true, but they learned it somewhere.

It starts at home. It can start when you’re a toddler, and it can start with your father trying to talk you out of having an allergy. Hey, if my son goes to the Olympics someday and ‘puts a lot of pressure on himself to be the best’, I’ll know in my heart of hearts that me pressuring him into not being allergic to peanuts made him a more intense competitor. You can never start too young. Crushing them with your hopes and dreams! They’ll have to endure it later on anyways. You’re not doing them any favors by waiting until they’re 7 or 8 years old.

Now I was going to stop there, and I’m not saying that I don’t trust my readers to know when I’m joking, but……. I’m sort of joking about some of this. Kind of.

Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer – The Sad, Twisted Tale


I would have to say that Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is the best Christmas song that isn’t ‘Little Drummer Boy’ or that Paul McCartney song that isn’t on Itunes. I was walking through a store listening to it with a fresh ear the other day, and a few things occurred to me. If you examine the lyrics a little closer, it is not a happy Christmas song, but rather a song about oppression and racism. Listen to the lyrics again with that in mind.

‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’….he’s not just a reindeer, he’s a ‘red-nosed’ reindeer. ‘Had a very shiny nose’……We’re already pointing out physical differences between him, and what’s considered to be a ‘normal’ reindeer. ‘And if you ever saw it, YOU would even say it glows’…….what they’re saying here is that his physical appearance is so different that EVEN YOU couldn’t be polite and non-judgemental. Even the least prejudice person in the world would HAVE to make a comment about Rudolph’s fucking nose.

‘All of the other reindeer used to laugh and call him names. They never let poor Rudolph join in any reindeer games’…… Laughing and calling him names???? No reindeer games??? What the fuck is a reindeer supposed to do with his free time if they don’t let him play reindeer games?? They make this shit sound so temporary too, but do you know how old a reindeer has to be before he/she can fly a sleigh?? At least 14!! How did I figure that out, you ask? Well, I don’t know shit about reindeer, but a horse has to be at least 2 years old to race at your local racetrack, and there’s 7 dog years to a human year, so I figure Rudolph has to be at least 14 before they consider putting him on the sleigh. That’s 14 years of abuse! You can say this job is seasonal all you want, but reindeering is a lifestyle! He’s not a fucking volunteer firefighter for fuck sakes, this is his full-time job! He doesn’t work for 2 weeks a year and then fly back to Wisconsin for the rest of the year to chill. He lives at the North Pole (which is in Canada by the way ;)) all year round. A place where his nose is just so fucking red, that EVEN YOU would say it glows.

‘Then one foggy Christmas Eve, Santa came to say’……Santa, the absentee landlord of the north pole. Enabler of bad reindeer behavior, who’s lost all control of the workplace, and done NOTHING to promote equality among his workers. ‘Rudolph, with your nose so bright, won’t you guide my sleigh tonight’….HOW CONVENIENT that Santa just happens to have a freak of nature in his back pocket to play on a foggy night. ‘Then all the reindeer loved him, as they shouted out with glee. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, you’ll go down in history.’

The story ends happily ever after, right? Rudolph takes the high road. Saves Christmas. Proves himself useful, and earns his place among the ‘normal’ reindeer, maybe even going down in history. Maybe. There’s a part of me that always wants that song to end a little differently. Perhaps in the style of Bing Crosby or Perry Como or one of those guys that used to talk in the middle of the song a bit. There would still be a bit of music in the background, but it could turn into one of those breakdowns in the middle of a song, where they talk to each other instead of sing. It could be a conversation between Santa and Rudolph, and it would go a bit like this…..(When you do the Rudolph voice in your mind, it only works if it’s that high-pitched Rudolph voice from that TV special that used to come on every year… you know the one)

Santa: Say, Rudolph…it’s gonna be a foggy one out there tonight.

Rudolph: Yeah Santa, yeah??

Santa: You know the other reindeer just tease you cuz they like ya, right??

Rudolph: Really Santa?? Really?? You mean the last 14 years of suffering and abuse was all out of love??? Wow!!!

Santa: Yeah, and you’ve been a good sport about it too! I was thinkin….. since you’ve been such a good sport, and since you’ve got that red nose and all…….I’ve got an offer for you….. how would you like to guide my sleigh tonight??? Right in the front!!

Rudolph: Wow!! Really Santa??

Santa: Really Rudolph….. Head Reindeer in charge!

Rudolph: Santa??

Santa: Yes Rudolph….

Rudolph: I have a counter offer for you…

Santa: What might that be????


Rudolph flies to Wisconsin for a better life.

The end.

Ridin’ Coattails

Ridin’ Coattails!!!! No, it’s not the name of my new rock band!! It’s a way of life. I can’t seem to get my mind off it lately. The recent success of a couple of my close friends has me re-thinking the way I’ve gone about my life. All this ‘going to work’…… all these ‘creative endeavours’ on the side….. What’s it all for?? Do I need this for my ego? My sense of self-worth? Let’s face it, I work for money. Now what if…. Just what if I knew someone whose career just blew up? Like an actor, singer, gangster or politician? Well they just might need an entourage, or at least one flunky to run around and do fun errands for them. The said individual might be in line for some decent renumeration, depending of course, on the success, and riches of the successful actor-singer-gangster-politician. In my short life, I’ve unfortunately never been in a position where I could even consider giving up my livelihood to be a member of a fun entourage that could live off the table scraps of the rich and famous. I feel like that is all about to change, and it has provided some clarity regarding my long-term employment goals.

I have a friend who recently directed a short film called “The Lamp”. First of all, it’s awesome! He’s awesome! It gets better. He hired my other friend to be the cinematographer of this particular film. This guy is awesome too! (As I writer I should strive to not describe two people as being awesome in the same paragraph, particularly in separate sentences….it would have been OK in the same sentence, like ‘these guys are awesome’, but the thing is, because they are both friends, and potential entourage havers, I don’t want to use different descriptors in case one seems better than the other, and then it looks like I’m playing favorites, because in reality I would be in either entourage if the opportunity arose.) I’m very excited this week. “The Lamp” has been selected for the Vancouver International Film Festival. It will be part of a ‘Shorts’ program called “Objects of Desire” running on October 3rd and 10th. This is big news!! Neither of these guys were doing this 2 years ago, and to be selected to a film festival?? Now I had never heard of the Vancouver International Film Festival before this, but I HAVE heard of Vanvouver, and I HAVE heard of Film Festivals, and I’m familiar with the term ‘International’, so I have no reason to believe that this isn’t earth shattering amazingness!!!!


Anybody that is an artist working in Canada knows that there’s no money in it, but I believe in long-shots. I believe that anybody can be a Drake or a Dan Akroyd. I also believe that you have to start ridin’ coattails early if you want to be a proper flunky. You gotta prove that you were with them from day one. I’ve not been shy about planting seeds for this either. I’ve made them both aware of my intentions. So much so, that I think I’ve been a little over-bearing. I’ve noticed that they are now both starting to leave about a 3 hour gap before returning my text messages, hoping I’ll stop being so creepy. I won’t stop though. Not until I reach the top. This is my new chosen career path!! Trevor Juras – Director Extraordinaire, and Othello Ubalde – Cinematographer Extraordinaire (again…. same theory as calling them both awesome, applies here as well), consider this my application form. When you guys get rich and famous from your considerable skill and ability, and you need someone to make Kool-Aid, shop for linens, fetch cigarettes, hire catering companies, play records, or even write a blog to increase your online presence……. I’d be happy to step in. I hope down the road, there will be pension and medical benefits involved, but for now I’ll work for beers.

I’m just kidding…. I have a wife and kid man, I don’t have time for that shit! All in all though, I wish these guys all the best at their first film festival, and continued success in the movie business. If you are curious at all about this short film, here’s a short preview.



So I texted Othello and Trevor a few minutes ago to get permission to show the link and drop their names. I always ask for permission before dropping names as a ‘respect for privacy’ thing. Funny that Drake and Dan Akroyd didn’t get back to me….. anyways, Othello told me that they JUST FOUND OUT they will be added to the ‘Toronto After Dark Film Festival’ coming up in late October. So it’s no fluke…. ‘The Lamp’ is doing big things! Hopefully I can go to this one! You guys need your shoes polished?? Need some Kool-Aid?? Let me know 😉 Congrats again guys!


If I wrote for ‘The Onion’, it would look something like this……

The Onion is the funniest, and in strange ways the most accurate newspaper around. For those that haven’t read it, it’s a satirical newspaper that is ‘shit your pants’ funny, but if you read between the lines, most of the stories are delivering a viewpoint in a really clever manner. I don’t laugh out loud at any other time more than I do when I read this paper (or website http://www.theonion.com). In that I’ve written a blog for an entire year that I like to categorize as humorous, my dream writing job would be to work for ‘the Onion’. (I don’t want to fully commit to that…. I have no idea what the working conditions or pay are like…..it could totally be a nightmare job as opposed to a dream job for all I know.) That being said, I decided it would be a neat idea to write an article ‘Onion-style’ to see if I could pull it off. Perhaps YOU can be the judge (which is a sad plea for comments on my blog….. did you see right through that?)

My article……

“Local Youth Achieves Street Credibility With The Purchase Of Low-Rise Jeans”

TORONTO – Local Youth Richie Johnson achieved street credibility yesterday by purchasing a pair of jeans that show the crack of his ass when he bends over. When asked if he thought it would be annoying to have to pull his pants up after every two and a half steps he takes, Richie was quoted as saying “Yeah, they’re a little uncomfortable, but they look cool, and that’s all that matters.” Sources confirmed that most of the kids that Richie wants to hang out with wear pants that are incredibly tight from the ankles through the thighs, and then unexplainably loose around the waist. “It adds to my street cred,” Richie added.

A classmate of Richie’s who requested to remain unnamed commented that “Richie is just a loser who thinks that if he dresses cool, that people will like him better.” The anonymous source confirmed that Richie has absolutely no ‘street cred’ to ‘add to’. Studies indicate that most of the wannabe thugs and gangsters that are wearing these pants are completely unaware of the irony that wearing pants that show a good 3 inches of butt cleavage (and thinking it makes you look like a bad boy) makes it impossible to outrun the police should their illegal activities ever lead to such a foot chase, yet they insist. “I think Richie thinks he’s a rapper now that he bought these jeans”, the source continued. “I don’t know who he thinks he is…. last week he was wearing fucking corduroy from Wal-Mart”

When his family was reached for comment, his older brother Marcus was the only one who was willing to speak with reporters. “Richie’s such a punk. A real embarrassment to the rest of the family. He’s wanted this idiotic looking pants for 2 years now, and our mom finally let him get a pair. He’s so full of himself right now, I swear when he’s least expecting, I’m going to give him the biggest fucking wedgie, of all time….. It’ll take him 2 weeks to get his balls out of his ass…. fucking goof!”

Teachers and students from his high school have seen this type of behavior before. Two years ago it was reported that he spent an entire semester growing his hair to achieve a windswept Justin Bieber look, but only managed to get his hair to look like a toupee. Jill Stevens, a teammate of Richie’s added “Wow, he finally got those skinny jeans he wanted. You can always count on Richie to be all over some fad that people had forgotten about for 3 years already.”

At press time, there was a growing concern developing over what underwear (that will ultimately be exposed) would be suitable to wear with these jeans. “I never really thought about the importance of that until I tried the jeans on” stated a perplexed Richie. “I guess I’ll just have to see what everyone else is doing!” Richie was last spotted at Target in the boxer short section debating hard about which colour of underwear would be more intimidating.

No please, really…. inconvenience me!!! Life really is all about you, I swear!

On the bus/streetcar/subway………

I’m so glad you feel comfortable enough on this bus to bring your take-out food, and eat a full-on meal here in front of me.  I think this is an important step in our relationship as complete strangers.  Ohhh the aroma, what is that??  Maybe you could give me the address of the place where you picked that up.  I’m so interested in your dining experience, I just wish there was something I could do to make you more comfortable.  Maybe I could stand, so you could put your food down.  Maybe I have napkins in my pocket.  I can’t believe this stupid bus doesn’t have a drink holder for you.  It’s so innovative of you to think of eating here, and providing a dual purpose for this vehicle which until you got here was only good for transportation.

I love the way you put your makeup on while riding the subway.  It’s amazing that I’m able to witness the entire transition on my commute to work in the morning.  It’s not just lipstick with you, is it?  You’ve got the whole case here.  This is going to be valuable for me to see you do this in a moving vehicle no less. I’ll cross my fingers while you do your eye makeup.  I hope you’re done before I get to work so I can see the finished product.  I know you’ll look like an absolute princess when you’re done and it means a lot to me that you allowed me to see the blank canvas first, and that now I know how it must feel to be inside of your bathroom.  No really…. Thank you!  I feel closer to you!

Dude, that seat on the bus that you’re on is really a 2-seater.  I mean it’s a love seat.  It only makes sense for you to sprawl out.  It’s important to me that you’re as relaxed and comfortable as possible.  There’s only an off chance that someone else would want to sit in the other seat, and besides…. you got here first!  You and your friend are chillin hard right now, so it’s only sensible that you re-create the conditions of your living room.  You should really talk louder too.  I don’t know if your buddy can hear you over the annoying rumbling of the train engine, and the other people on the train.  You should really sit as far apart from each other as possible, because you’re saying some really interesting deep stuff right now, and I think the rest of the train can benefit from hearing it.  Thank you for being open and generous with your thoughts.  You’re really making the rest of us feel welcome.

Oh and the guy with the iPod???  You are groovin up a storm.  The way you’re actually rapping some of the lyrics out loud is like entertainment for me.  You are mad talented, and I feel like Drake is right here on the subway train.  I might need an autograph after this.  How can I get that song on my iPod?  The way you’re doing a live rendition of it???  I should be so lucky to have live entertainment on my work commute.  I didn’t even have to pay for a ticket.  Man…. you’re dancing like nobody’s watching!!!!  That is philosophically in alignment with every bit of ‘life advice’ I’ve ever received.  I can only hope that some day I might have the courage to do the same.  You inspire me!!