Saturday, September 27, 2008

Boiler Room

Top Ten clues that I'm going to have a difficult client:


1) They are checking e-mails or talking on their cell phone in the "Relaxation Room".
Seriously?


2) They are built like a Mac truck . . . . .
"Hey, anybody want my three o'clock? I think I'm getting a cramp!"

3) They have diarrhea of the mouth from the second I greet them. . . . .
Do NOT ear rape me. I don't get paid enough.


4) The first words the client says are, "My psychiatrist recommended. . . . ."
So, I guess getting rubbed with hot oil by a sexy man in a dark room whilst naked is suppose to help with that huh?

5) When they have more hair than Beyonce. . . . .
Don't act like you didn't know your crow's nest would get all up in my way. You better tie that shit up girl.


6) When they have more body hair than a Silver Back Gorilla. . . . .
For Pete's sake, get that shit waxed, or lasered. Damn ladies.


7) When they've self diagnosed injuries and refuse to see a doctor. . . . .
I hurt my lower back a few months ago and I think I have a bulging disc, or a herniated disc, or a pinched nerve. Uhuh, and what website told you this?


8) When they want me to fix them the same day they injured themselves. . . . .
"Yeah, I just fell off a ladder a few hours ago and can barely walk, think you can dig in there?" No dumbass, a massage will probably only make it worse, besides why don't you use this money for your co-pay?. . . . retard.


9) When they say, "Do I need to take my bra off?". . . . .
Well, no of course not. As a matter of fact why don't you just leave the whole fucking robe on. I'm sure it will feel crazy awesome.


10) When a client wants me to focus extra attention on more than just a few areas. . . . .
"Make sure you get my right shoulder, there are tons of knots in there. My left knee's been acting up and I sprained my left ankle a few weeks ago. The right side of my neck is a little messed up, I think I slept on it wrong. Oh, could you dig into my hamstrings, they're really tight. You know, my sciatica has really been acting up too. Don't touch my hair please I just got it done, but definitely save some time for my face. Oh my God, I almost forgot, I looooove getting my feet rubbed. By the way, I'm so sorry but I forgot to shave my legs. And one last thing, I've been playing a lot of tennis lately and my elbow's been giving me some problems. I think I have tennis elbow, but don't worry about that so much, I'd much prefer you get my lower back." Um, you do realize that this is a 50 minute massage right?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Burn After Reading

I think I have a problem. I just read a book in three days. TH-REEEEEE days! Once I start I just can't stop. I want to know what happens. No. I need to know what happens! I just went to a little book store on the edge of town, as if it were a crack house, to stock up for the coming weeks. And when I want to encourage children to read I tell them it's just like crack. "You'll love it!" I say. "Well, not the crack, I mean you'll love that too, but it's not good for you. So, uh, stick to the books, because reading is fun. Well, probably not as fun as crack, technically, but much, much safer. And although stealing money from mommy's purse might seem like a good idea, getting her to just buy you some books would be a lot easier. You'll probably get more books than you would crack for the same amount of money anyway, if you bargain your little ass off. And when you run out of money, you can always check books out from the library, where unfortunately, you can't do that with crack. Although, I would imagine that you could probably get through a lot more library books if you were on crack, but that's just speculatory." Here is a short recap of the books I've recently left in the wake of my insatiable crack-reading tornado:

I just finished Water for Elephants. Great historical novel, quick read obviously, but cleverly written. It's about a young veterinary student from Cornell University that runs off to join the circus after tragedy strikes his life during the Great Depression. It's mainly told as a series of memories from the main character who is presently a 90 yr old, or a 93 yr old resident at a nursing home.

Before that, Three cups of Tea. The unbelievable recount of a devout climber who attempts to summit the 2nd tallest peak in the world, K2, which is found in the Himalayas. During the descent of this particular endeavor, he is in awe at the hospitality a local tribe shows him. After discovering that the children learn by using sticks to draw in the sand and are devoid of school supplies, much less an actual school, he's inspired to build one for them. For those unfamiliar with that part of the world, this mountain is located in northern Pakistan. Which by the way, borders Afghanistan and Iran. So, sufficed to say, building a school there comes with particular "challenges" for an American. Especially, during the events of 9/11. Anyway, I highly recommend it.

Before that I crushed Eat, Pray, Love, one of the more enjoyable reads I've had in a long, long time. Brilliantly written, fraught with humor, and extraordinary metaphoric references, a writer chronicles her journey of self discovery after an extremely excruciating divorce. She travels to Italy, India, and Bali, meeting people, learning languages, and finding that one person we all wish to connect with. Anyway, Fantastic book. Read it already!

Prior to that, I read The Life of Pi, which at first is difficult to get through, but the pay off is deliciously worth it. It's about an Indian boy who's parents own a zoo and decide to move to Canada. He Ends up shipwrecked at sea, the lone human survivor, along with a few animal characters; one being a ferocious Bengal tiger. Very intriguing story that makes you want to read it again, just for good measure.

The Power of Now, a magnificent story of enlightenment and Marley and Me, a dog lover must, were also superb books. I would tell you what else I've been reading, but I think you should mind your own business. Besides, you have some catching up to do . . . .

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Far and Away

So, my Dad calls me this morning about wanting to share some sort of poem. Like an eager child exacting his parent's attention before showing them how he can jump off the diving board, he says, "Brown, listen to this:"

I used to rule the world,
Seas would rise when I gave the word.
Now in the morning I sleep alone,
sweep the streets that I used to own.

Apparently, after the disastrous week in the stock market and the fall of a few Wall Street behemoths, he had some epiphanous moment of poetic justice, and couldn't wait to tell me more. As if climbing back out of the pool with excitement and again approaching the diving board with unwavering focus, he continued on . . . . .

I used to roll the dice,
see the fear in my enemy's eyes.
Listen as the crowd would sing,
"Now the old king is dead! Long live the King!"

Now, being that I am a poet and have many memorized, I immediately started scanning through the sheaf of files in my mind's library, much the way a reporter would flip through streaming sheets of old articles stored on micro-fiche. As he continued talking, I easily began eliminating poets. Cummings, Dickinson, Frost, Blake, Browning . . . . .definitely not Chaucer. . . . .

One minute I held the key,
the next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand,
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand.

Dammit, I know this, I kept thinking to myself. It sounds so familiar. Hughes, Poe, Wilde . . . . could definitely be Whitman . . . . or even Yeats. Yeah, I'm definitely leaning towards Yeats, but the title eludes me. . . . . .

I hear Jerusalem's bells a ringing,
Roman Calvary choirs are singing.
Be my mirror, my sword, my shield,
My missionaries in a foreign field.

Wait a second . . . . . is this even a . . . . "Brown, have you ever heard of Viva La Vida?" he interjects. "Uh, no" . . . came my defeated reply. "It's a song from these people named Cold Play", he says. "They're very good". "Ah, of course it is", I say, the realization striking me like an anvil being dropped from an overhead window. Being almost 3,000 miles away, he doesn't have the advantage of hearing them on the radio like we do, so on some things he can be a few weeks behind. He finishes his lyrical rhetoric illuminating the connection with the government's current events and topping things off with an insightful thought of irony, about how both McCain and Bush were initially against government regulations that my have circumvented these very financial travesties.

Having once been a teacher, my Dad is exceptionally computer savvy for a scholar his age. He continues telling me how he downloaded the song and even watched the video on You Tube. I never thought in a million years, that I would ever be discussing You Tube with my Father. Which actually, is kind of cool when you think about it. Although he comes from a very different generation, (you know, the one that had to walk miles in the snow to get to school) he's remarkably perceptive when it comes to today's generational paradigm. I love having these conversation with him now that he's retired and has the time. As long as he doesn't call me later to share Lil Wayne's, "I got Money", or tell me that he pimped his ride, I couldn't be happier.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Patriot

Although I should be bringing this up next month, since technically October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, I just got so excited thinking about breasts that I couldn't wait to talk about those lovely mammary mounds of joy. Surely at this point I don’t have to expend a single breathe expressing my wholehearted devotion to the preservation of breasts and my indefatigable vow to support the research for a breast cancer cure, even if that means the arduous task of single handedly inspecting each one of them myself. That’s my level of commitment. That's how I roll.

Until my license as High Boob Chancellor has completed its final phase of processing, which will allow me unquestioned and unfettered access to thoroughly inspect any breast anywhere, I will intermittently have to join the common man in the trenches and take a less hands-on approach to do my part. I am taking this opportunity to challenge all of you to take up arms (and legs) and join me in the boldest walk for a cure in mammary history. You can do so by visiting The 3 day website to find out when the 3 day walk for a cure will be in your chest of the woods. Basically, it will be a 3 day 60 mile walk dedicated to finding a cure and raising awareness for breast cancer. You will have refreshments, hot meals, and even entertainment provided for you along the way. It will be held throughout all the major cities in the U.S., and I really can't find a better reason to walk anywhere. So, visit the site, mark your calenders, and prepare to lace 'em up (shoes and bras) and get to steppin'.

Don't forget you can always continue to show support by buying pink-products in stores, where portions of the proceeds go to Cancer Research. Yoplait Yogurts, which are delicioso, donate a dollar per lid when you send them in. Philadelphia cream cheese is on board, and toothbrushes, contact solution, and air fresheners can all be found in pink. My contact case is pink, thanks to one of my sisters, a pink ribbon hangs from my car's rear view mirror, and my favorite cutting board, (thanks Regina!) is also, you guessed it, as pink as a freshly picked areola. From pens and magnets, to shirts that profess your healthy adoration for bosoms of all shapes and sizes, can be found just about anywhere. And although we can't all be respected booby chancellors, at least we can all be ambassadors for breasts. Save the boobies!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Pay it Forward

So, I recently read this post from a blogger, (True Tales of a Hair wrecker) that I started following, and was reminded about another pet peeve that really grinds my gears. I absolutely detest people who are impolite and have no sense of common courtesy. I hate them almost as much as I hate one eyed midgets and those stupid cycling helpmets that look like a giant sperm. Almost.

That's right people, learn some freakn' manners. Open the door, get out of the aisle, let someone in your lane, stop for a pedestrian, give up your seat, hold the elevator, and for the love of God, don't you dare stop abruptly when walking in the mall to look at some random shit. I'm right behind you and I may just not feel like putting the breaks on.

I can't stand when you are walking, whether you are carrying something or not, (more so when you are) and people are conversing in the middle of an aisle, completely and disrespectfully oblivious to on comers, and fail to politely move out of the way to allow unfettered passage. I don't think I can properly convey how much this makes my blood boil. What's even worse is when you say excuse me, and they shoot you a look of complete inconvenience, as if you were asking them to help you dig a trench after they've already given you a kidney. Yeah, go ahead and roll your eyes at me asshole, I'll be sure to do the same when you beg me to remove the duct tape from your mouth before I shove you into the trunk of my car.

My absolute favorite is when, after you've been given the "I can't believe you're going to actually make me move" look, they step only an inch or two forward allowing barely enough space for a cardboard cut out of you to get by. I always make it a point to lead in with my shoulder like a running back trying to gain extra yards for a first down, hopefully knocking them off balance enough to let them know how reprehensible I think they are. If I'm exceptionally irritated, I cough and sneeze like I have the AVIAN flu and watch those inconsiderate miscreants disperse like roaches when the lights come on. They're lucky I'm not blessed with my brother-in-law's talent to fart obnoxiously on command. So, Lindsey, I salute you and all mothers who make it your personal endeavor to properly educate and instill proper courtesy and gallantry in your young men. It will serve them, and the rest of humanity well. Even if only to provide one more dry toilet seat in the restroom.

p.s.

Just as a side note, whenever I do open a door for a female, I think it's rather impolite for them to put their hand on the door as if I were going to let it go. Do people actually do this, open the door for someone to only let it slam on them as they pass through? What would be the point of me opening the door if you are going to practically do it yourself? Don't act like you're too good to accept this small chivalrous gesture from a man either, I'm not doing it because I don't think you're fully capable of doing so. I do it because it's the right thing to do. . . . .and because I need a reason to see your ass as you go by. I'm just saying, staring is rude.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Rain Man

In celebration of my infinite wellspring of useless knowledge, I found it appropriate to share a little gadget with you that would simultaneously symbolize my savant-like abilities and help to spread the wisdom of impractical trivia. This bastion of useless information, although not as brilliant as the cuss-o-meter, is equally as adored and hopefully will serve to educate you, or at the very least provide a modicum of inconsequential entertainment. (notice how I'm always looking out for you)

Toodles . . .

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Jerry Maguire

Probably one of the Grand Daddy of all my pet peeves is people who do not tip 18 to 20%. Plain and simple. If you can't afford to tip your therapist even a measly 15%, then you shouldn't be getting a massage to begin with. What's even worse, is when people tip like that when someone else is paying for their service. If you come to get a massage with a Gift Certificate and don't have the decency to tip appropriately, your skin should be shaved off with a cheese grater and you should be dropped into a pit of flesh-eating ants after you've been dipped in molasses. Look, I'll be the first to admit that we charge way more than is humanly necessary, but not only are you getting high quality work, you are also in the most luxurious of surroundings and have access to all the amenities of our entire facility (which includes a state of the art fitness center).

Although, my spa caters to the wealthier elite class, this concept is easily applicable to your every day spa or anyone else who depends on tips as a source of income. Unless your therapist touched you inappropriately, (perhaps a little tea-bagging incident) managed not to listen to any of your needs, or literally didn't know what he/she was doing, then I can understand tipping below the bench mark. However, when you visit one of the country's leading luxury spas and pay a few hundred dollars for a treatment, and you get this tall drink of sexy brownness, and I give you the most bad-ass massage you've ever had; you better be leaving me 20% or I'll wish evil upon your children and steal your favorite t-shirt.

There is nothing more insulting than to hear you rant and rave about how I was the best you've ever had, how exquisitely wonderful I am, and how you wish you could afford for me to work on you everyday . . . . and then for you to leave me 25 bucks on a $230 treatment. Um, excuse me mam, but you seem to be mistaken. Perhaps the lights were a little too dim for you to see correctly, or maybe you were still a little lightheaded by the bomb-ass massage you just received, but I think you meant to make that two, a four. Seriously. My favorite is the pompous asshole who nonchalantly shakes your hand on his way out while inconspicuously leaving a twenty dollar bill in your palm as if you had just parked his fucking car and he's doing you a favor. Hey there Guido, I just spent the better part of 80 minutes rubbing your hairy-ass and listening to you snore like you a were a troll with pneumonia. Mr. Jackson here, better have some friends joining him shortly.

It's actually quite an interesting phenomenon that continuously keeps us scratching our heads. The people who don't have much to say are generally the ones that exceed your tipping expectations. It's extremely difficult, in the short period of time in which we introduce ourselves and find out what you want out of the massage, to ascertain exactly what you're feeling, or what you may be going through. Maybe you just landed a 747 from an 18 hour flight from Germany while suffering from a bout of diarrhea, perhaps you just ran a marathon in flip flops and your feet hurt, you could have just lost your dog, or wasted the last few hours of your life watching the Republican National Convention. Unless you say something, we can't always tell. I'll have clients on occasion that flat out don't even seem like they're enjoying the massage. They answer your questions abruptly or ambiguously, making it difficult for you to gauge how things are going. Some are even a little rigid or fidgety at times. But when you go to pick up their receipt, you find an even 20% or higher as a result of your labor. Apparently they loved it, but either weren't quite the social butterfly or weren't in the mood to express it. Quite frankly I prefer clients who are responsive and complimentary to you during their treatment, but if I had to chose, I'll go with the cool hard cash over the compliments any day. I know I'm good, and although I absolutely love to hear you tell me so, Brown's gotta put food on his family. (if you know where that last part is from you'll get a special prize!)

I've discussed this issue before with other therapists, and usually we are all in agreement. But I have had the pleasure before of hearing the perspective of one therapist who thought that I should be happy that we even get tipped and that being able to give someone such a wonderful gift should be the only fulfillment I need (I choked her and dumped her body in a swamp) I am very appreciative of all the things that envelop the type of work I do, and I indeed reap great rewards from being able to facilitate the body's healing process, bring someone peace of mind, or even rid someone of pain entirely. I meet all kinds of fascinating people and I feel very blessed to share my gift with those who need it. And when I volunteer my work, believe you me, an appreciative smile or thankful nod, is all I need in return.

However, I'm not going to lie, massage therapy is my profession and I'm giving you two of my greatest nonrenewable resources: my time and my energy. When you book me, you are entering a business transaction and as a result, I expect to be paid accordingly. I'm not sure how it is with some body workers, but I take extreme pride in what I do, I pay attention to the smallest of details to ensure that you get the most for what you are paying for. With every one who lays on my table, I make it my personal endeavor to give you the best of what I have. I know for a fact that most massage therapists don't do this. It's too physically and spiritually demanding to give a 100% to all of your clients, but day in and day out, that's exactly what I do. That's how I roll. So, do us all a favor, the next time you get a massage . . . . show some damn respect . . . . then SHOW ME THE MONEY!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Cuss-o-Matic

Warning: The following entry contains a significant amount of foul language, and although not primarily intended to offend anyone, certainly harnesses the inherent capability of doing so. With that said, if you have delicate sensibilities, are underage, or suffer from a heart condition, then you definitely should not read this. As a matter of fact you came to the wrong place altogether. . .

As you may have noticed, there is a brand new, shiny Cuss-o-meter that decorates my little space in the blogosphere! I stumbled upon this lovely contraption a little while ago and instantly knew that we were destined to be together. Now, I know that using expletives in writing can usually indicate a lack of intelligence or literary imagination, but this device is was too fucking brilliant to pass up! In seconds, it can analyze thousands of pages and count how many times you used a bad word, instantly giving you a cuss-rating to warn your readers of how often a fuck, shit, or motherfucker appear in your writing. Completely fascinated by this new discovery, I was determined to find out how I ranked amongst my peers.

I began to wonder how discriminatory the Cuss-o-Meter might be, what criterion he might use to determine my cuss-rating, and ultimately how accurate it really is. I mean, if your reiterating something somebody else said, does that cuss word count? Or what if you were telling your readers about something you read? For instance, if I tell you that I had a wallet that read, "Bad Motherfucker" on it, would that count? Does goddammit count? Surely "goddammit, I lost my motherfucking wallet" would have to be considered. More over, words like "asshole" can easily be used to depict some body's demeanor, or refer to their actual rectum depending on connotation, and would my cuss-o-meter know the difference? I had to know the answers to these burning questions.
"Bitch, although originally meant to define a female dog, has become a swearing staple generally used to characterize a woman, (usually one of strong personality) "She's such a bitch", or even a group of women, "Look at these bitches". It can be applied to your current location, "You have anything to eat in this bitch?", or when trying to pursuade someone into action as in "C'mon, don't be a bitch". Ironically, it can possess positive implications when you want to illustrate how wonderful something might be, "This party is bitch'n", or to portray an unfortunate event, "Aint this a bitch". People will even use it to report an extraordinarily challenging task, "It was a bitch to get these jeans on", or "climbing those stairs was a bitch".
It's well known that "fuck" is the most versatile word in the English language. It can be a noun, verb, adjective, or even an adverb as in "absofuckinglutely". Regularly used as an exclamation, "Fuck, I stubbed my toe", or even more predominately to insinuate sex, "Let's fuck", "They're in there fucking", and "She's already fucked the whole office". Routinely used as a vociferous retort "Fuck you", to tell someone where you'd like for them to go "Fuck off", or what you'd like for them to do when they get there "Go fuck yourself". "Don't fuck me" and "Don't fuck me over", are customarily utilized when you are trying to convey that you are strictly against having your trust broken, (usually uttered before loaning someone money) and "Don't fuck around" when discouraging shenanigans. When at a loss of words to describe a situation, (like this post for instance) or to express disbelief, one could say "unfuckingbelievable" or "no fucking way".

Which leads me to another observation about how different levels of exclamation can be achieved by either adding other seemingly innocuous words in front of, or behind, these grammatical gems like "Holy shit" (I think indicating the highest level of shit). Shithead, Fuckface, and Fuckwad, are enigmatically used to either describe undesirables, or people we actually care about dearly. Your deepest adoration can also be projected by saying, "I fucking love you man". The most obscure of these phrases may very well be "Shit-eating grin" (for obvious reasons) and "Fucking-A". The latter, although a relic in most contemporary social circles, can still be heard, but is often followed by "man" or "dude" to express your disapproval with another person's behavior. "Clusterfuck" (a military favorite) is commonly used to indicate a situation that is hopelessly in chaos or disarray, where as "We are so fucked" and/or "Fuck me", is widely accepted as the last thing a person would say right before being obliterated by explosive materials.

Finally, combinations using three or more of these words can create a colorful tongue twisting language all it's own like, "Bitch ass motherfucking asshole" or "Punk ass motherfucker". Please keep in mind that using words like "suck", "lick", "eat", "hell", "balls", and "ass", are essential in creating the flow necessary to pull off the desired effect. Again, I warn against trying to use these combinations before you're ready, because you could sound like a fucking idiot in the presence of seasoned professionals. However, with enough diligent practice and an experienced mentor, you may one day join forces with the elite cussers of our time. Me? Well, I have other shit to worry about. . . . . Peace the fuck out.