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Going Gray

I’ve decided to go gray. Yep, you heard right: after 20+ years of hitting the dye pots, I’ve decided to let nature take it’s course. I’m going to be my “true authentic” self, words often used by transsexuals when announcing their transition, but I digress….

I was in my early 40’s before I dyed my hair. That finally happened when a much younger colleague said, with no malice, “You know, you’d look younger if you dyed your hair.” GASP! I was taken aback…and punched her. In the shoulder; not hard. I looked in the mirror closely. Yes, there was more silver in the gold than I thought. So I bit the bullet…and now I’m ready to stop.

 Why stop? There are a number of reasons: the expense, the time, and to me, the most important one.. why not? I’m not fooling anyone, nor do I want to. I am no longer working; everyone near and dear to me knows how old I am, and I think my hair will be healthier in the long run. Besides, my hair color does not define me. (What does is a different story for another day.)
This is not to say I’m without trepidation, I mean, let’s be real. It’s a process. What if I hate it, or worse, what if it really makes me look OLD? I mean, I AM old…older…old-ish. Not withered crone from the fairy tales, but “still rocking skinny jeans and black leather while collecting Social Security” old.
Men get a little gray and they’re “distinguished.” Women aren’t as lucky, but that has changed a bit now, with young women purposely dying their hair shades of silver, white, and gray.  I earned mine the old-fashioned way. And it’s going to look killer…

Psyk Goes Nuts And Stuff

“He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man”
-Dr. Johnson

Hello, Readers of “WTF?”! I am Psykosity’s wife, and you may call me “The Neuroscientist”, probably because that is what I am. Although I am retired from that profession, I am a published scientist, and my training has become a welcome resource that I use frequently in my dealings with Psykosity, as some of you can well imagine.

If you have read any of my husband’s articles for this fine, upstanding blog, you may wonder how I deal with someone as wild and crazy as he. The answer an immense wellspring of patience that I have developed after thirty years of marriage to a man who, on the whole, is a wonderful husband, a devoted father, and a man who risked his health to provide for his family. All that, plus the special account I have at the pharmacy for the tranquilizer darts that I use in my blowgun.

Why?

Well, for example, a few nights ago Psyk found a drink recipe that he decided he HAD to try, and he started posting about this recipe and the adventure following the making of this drink on Gab in the “Corner Pub” group which, incidentally, is a group started by WTF? owner and editor: Sparky…)


Psykosity: I need a couple shots of something called ” Two Hicks and A Spic Chase A Turkey Down A Mine Shaft.” It’s equal parts Jack Daniels, Jim Beam, Jose Cuervo, Wild Turkey, and Goldschläger.
LET’S DO THIS!

(This started an eventful Friday night that went off the rails fairly quickly; an adventure that Psyk decided to post to a social network as it happened.)

Psykosity: Well, THIS isn’t good…I’ve made too much of the “Two Hicks and A Spic Chase A Turkey Down A Mine Shaft”!
EIGHT SHOTS WORTH!
I’ve downed three so far. Tastes like gasoline. I’m already feeling the effects. I need to space these out.
This may be a LONG night.
I’m going down the Rabbit Hole…

(Psyk was chasing the shots with O’Hanlon’s Original Port Stout, and the combination of the shots and the Stout seemed to get on top of him pretty fast and activated that part of his brain reserved exclusively for thoroughly ridiculous, substance infused hijinks. At one point, one of his WTF? colleagues tried to warn him off, to no avail. The ship had sailed from the dock. The Train had left the station. Mod: I will always appreciate that you tried!)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: Okay…go outside to the fire pit, throw the rest in, light a match and move back quickly…

(From this point, Psyk was five or six shots deep into his concoction, and that, combined with the stout beer and the Medical Herbs that he smokes occasionally when he has neuropathy pain, meant that he was fully on his way to what he sometimes calls a “complete and total freakout”. I loaded up a blowgun with a tranquilizer dart and kept it at the ready. In the meantime, Psyk kept posting his progress (if such a word could be used to describe his condition) to his favorite online haunt. From this point on in the story, it will be my job to interpret the posts he made throughout the evening, sort of giving a ‘color commentary’ as we continue on through the night.)

Psykosity: (To Modesty Fiona Blaise) WASTE BOOSZE?
NEVRER!
I would have my party licece revoked!

(Obviously, at this point Psyk was besotted…cockeyed…fuddled…orgiastic (hello Wildman)…pie-eyed…pissed…pixilated…plastered…soaked…sloshed…)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: Not wasting – putting to good use. You’ll make the evening news for the size of the mushroom cloud it creates.

(Oh Mod! Such stories I could tell you! What incredible tales of dissipation and jack-assery could I spin! Anyway- as you readers can plainly tell by the accuracy of his typing, Psyk was off to the races…)

Psykosity: MHY WIFE IS MUTTERING!
why do I DO this to myselgf?

(Yes. In fact, I WAS muttering to myself. I distinctly remember talking to myself, trying to determine why he does this to himself. My only answer is this: In a world that is busy setting itself on fire, the most sane person is the lunatic laughing at the flames.)

Psykosity: 7 shots\
GOD HELP US

(Determined as he was to drink all eight shots, finish the stout, and smoke another bowl of medicinal herb, his ability to type was just as impacted by the substances he was imbibing as his ability to talk in coherent sentences. Unfortunately, another member of the Corner Pub group, who thought that Psyk was ONLY drinking the concoction and did not know about the stout and the herb, tried to help out by recommending that Psyk switch to something more…benign…)

SamTheSham: Psyk: I think you might want to switch to something else. Why don’t you have a beer with me?

(Of course, this just made him switch gears, and he popped open another Stout and set about finishing the shots.)

Psykosity: BEER
WHATA GREAT IDEA

(Well, you can just about imagine what I was confronted with. He was strapped to his electric wheelchair, spinning around in circles drinking and spilling his Stout, and shouting about Hottentots (it’s ALWAYS Hottentots). Then, he grabbed a hold of a huge, police-issued flashlight and shined it into his own eyes…)

Psykosity: HOLY SHIT I CAN SEE THE INSIDES OF MY EYEBOALLS!

(It was then I sensed a shift…the air seemed to get thicker…I instinctively tensed up. He seemed to have made a decision…one that I would NOT agree with…)

Psykosity: ALL EIGHT SHOTS DOWN
iM GOIN TO MAKE 2 MOPRE L SHOTS AND GO OUT IN THE CHAIR
take my phon with me. keep yu all apprised

(Here is where I need to start interpreting. He had downed all eight shots and finished the Stout, and now he was planning on taking his electric wheel chair out for a spin on the country road we live on. Now, Dear Reader, you need to know that we live outside of a VERY small, Midwestern town on a very lonely and rarely used road. Nevertheless, I was not exactly excited about the prospect of Psyk blasting back and forth on the road in front of the house wasted out of his mind…)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: I’m sure your spelling is going to get spectacular…

(Note to Mod and Sparky: Sometime, I will have his brother come get Psyk and we will get together, have some wine, and I will tell you stories that he WON’T tell. Somehow, I’m sure you would understand…)

Psykosity: mcyg
much resistaence from the wife.
I MUST DO THIS
im going to city hall to take a lek on the cornerstome

(He announced his intention to drive his wheelchair two miles into town to the City Hall building to pee on the cornerstone at the same time he posted his resolution on Gab. Yes, there WAS “much resistance” to this plan from me. I knew that Psyk was still upset about finding a city worker on our property about to install a ‘Smart Meter’ onto our home, and after he had told the worker to leave, he drove into town to have words with the proper people. His intention to ‘leave his mark’ on City Hall was stupid, useless, and would ultimately make the situation worse. Nevertheless, arguing with him in this condition was also pointless. One might as well try to put a cat into a tuxedo…)

Psykosity: ok I have by self together
i will not nother with capital letters or punchuation, because it is dark
wife is upset. mayhave to sleep on the porch 2nite
2 o long miles down the country raod to ge t to city hall.
i have a monster endergy tdrink and a bowl and a pocket nife
there is plent y of juice in the chair
all is well

(As any parent knows, if a child is trying to put his fingers into a light socket, there are two ways to handle it: either keep the child away from the light socket, smacking their hands if necessary, or let them go ahead and experience the thrill of house current. Make no mistake, Psyk is NOT a child, but he seemed determined, and after a few minutes of tense words, I decided to let him LICK the light socket. In the meantime, people in the Corner Pub group were speculating…)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: (psst, Tans? I bet he doesn’t make it to the end of the driveway..)

Tanstaafl: I was betting on a face plant off the porch with the chair rolling to the end of the driveway.

SamTheSham: Chair ran him over…heh

Modesty Fiona Blaise: That could still happen, once he gets out of the cow pasture…

Psykosity: yew of lirtrle little faith

(And so, he was off, out the back door, down the wheelchair ramp, around to the front of the house and rolling down the long lane to our house and into the road, into the darkness and on his mission to pee on the City Hall Building)

Psykosity: cows
whatar they doing out at night
should be inn bed

(Between his inebriation and his big, long, fat fingers, Psyk was trying to post to Gab and work the joystick on his electric wheelchair, making his posts rather difficult to read. Obviously, he had come across some cows grazing in the night. They belonged to our long-suffering neighbors, The Millers. The farm grew corn and soybeans and raised cows, horses, and pigs. They are very dear and understanding people whom we like a lot, and they like us despite the sounds of our rock band recording at the house through the years and Psyk occasionally losing his mind, like he was doing on this night. At least he recognized that they were cows and not very large, four-legged Hottentots with faucets. It’s always Hottentots. Mod tried vainly to reason with him, to no obvious avail. Not to worry, Mod; I’ve been trying to reason with him for three decades!)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: Uh, maybe you’re in their pasture?

Psykosity: no sleep i like me food lrested

(Hmmmm. All this time married to this madman and he never once told me that he likes his food well rested.)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: That was sorta in English…with a dash of Yoda thrown in.

Psykosity: my hands r to big for the phon keys

(Psyk was obviously having trouble posting messages to Gab. His eyesight is not very good when he is sober in daylight, so I’m sure he couldn’t really read what he was trying to type, plus he has those huge sausage fingers, plus he was pickled. It’s probably a good idea that he didn’t pull over, set his chair on fire, and try to post smoke signals onto the internet…)

Psykosity: evry thing is all fliberygibery
car coming

(I think the phrase he was looking for was “flibberty-gibberty,” but that doesn’t matter. I would stress that, at this moment, he was in no danger of the car that was heading towards him: It was the Miller’s coming home from church bingo, and since we live in an area where there are a lot of deer running out in front of cars, they were driving very carefully and saw him rolling down the road.)

Psykosity: coming ip to the mile marl;k
why isit to cold
fecking august herewtf

(If it gets below sixty-five degrees, as it does in August a few hours after the sun goes down in our part of the United States, he claims to freeze. He was dressed in his Jimi Hendrix t-shirt and jeans, and he apparently forgot this important fact in his rush to piss on the cornerstone of the City Hall building. He was a mile from the house and halfway into town when he had this realization. He might be saved by prevailing weather patterns yet. Who knew?)

Psykosity: holy shit bad idea
turning around
abanon all hope allyew gentlemmen and ladies

(Abandon all hope, indeed. My husband is ever the dedicated protester of small town bureaucracy until he gets cold, and then he starts to sober up, come slowly to his senses and decides MOST of the time that the issue isn’t really worth the steam…)

Psykosity: fuc
bats

(Psykosity hates bats. Fun fact.)

Psykosity: mess hugemess
I think;e my niebor saw me takea slash in the road
panicd
got pilss down my leg
shit

(At this point in our intrepid explorer’s trip back home, Psyk decided to relieve himself on the road, which would’ve been fine except he ostensibly thought he saw Mrs. Miller looking out the window, panicked, and got pee all over one of his pants legs. Not his best moment…)

Modesty Fiona Blaise: I’m going to be calling it a night…going to leave you and George in charge… just stack the glasses on the bar and make sure the guys run the dishwasher. Good night, gentlemen…and Psyk 😘

Tanstaafl: Goodnight, Miss Blaise
Once he passes out (possibly before) I’m going to handcuff him to the foot rail and give him a pillow. We’ll tidy up the place and lock up behind us.

Modesty Fiona Blaise: Thank you. Leave the key to the handcuffs in the register, please? Oh, and maybe something by his head in case he feels ill…which I think is a distinct possibility….

(God bless his friends on social media and his colleagues here at WTF? and The Beaverlick Gazette: Psyk rarely comes across people with the humor and the patience to put up with him…)

Psykosity: batteyt diwb
battery down to 10
shit
shodve checked the ho fone before i left

(Apparently, Psyk realized that his phone battery was low. I don’t know what a “ho fone” is, but he didn’t charge his phone before he left.)

Psykosity: all aleon alone
its verydark
it bowl time
mkore beer

(It was a moonless night that night; very dark. I think he decided to stop by the side of the road and fire up a bowl of some of his medicinal marijuana. I have no idea where he got the can of beer. Sometimes, it’s important in a marriage to not ask questions and enjoy the mystery…)

Psykosity: holy shit that two hik thingyu really gets on t op or u

(I’m really not sure what he’s trying to say here, but I suspect that he is realizing that ten shots of ” Two Hicks and A Spic Chase A Turkey Down A Mine Shaft” probably wasn’t one of his best ideas…)

Psykosity: fk cop

(I think, at this point, one of our Sherriff’s Deputies were driving past on their patrol of the area. Psyk should not have been so shocked, nor so paranoid: the town’s police force and our local Sheriff’s Department all know us, and we know them. Like the Miller’s, they are all familiar with Psyk’s shenanigans.)

Psykosity: wew drove past
more bowl
goodstif stk stuff

(After the Sheriff’s Deputy passed, probably waving at him and shaking his head, Psyk must have decided to finish his bowl. I can tell you this: say want you want about Medical Marijuana, he has spent the last eight years in a constant pain range (from 1 being lowest to 10 being the highest) from 7 to 9, and with the herb, he sometimes can get down to a 3 or 4. Because of this, I have NO PROBLEM with him using this as opposed to being hooked by Big Pharma on opiates, which is another discussion for a different forum. We are talking here about a drunken moron driving his wheelchair around in the dark.)

Psykosity: almost om home
ths chair has 5 grea gears
rely fast now
more cows
ana horse

(His wheelchair does have five gears, and each of those gears has five different speed variations. Top speed on the chair is approximately 30 mph., which is OK if he is outdoors on the street, but is murder on the walls if he forgets and starts up his chair in high gear inside the house…)

Psykosity: im in meoij
im in my drivway now
home
this wil be my last com ofer the phon

(Finally, I hear him coming up the wheelchair ramp and banging into the back doorjamb. I’m not mad, not even a little. Every now and then, a man like him needs to blow off steam. There are worse ways to do it, I think. Many men freak out about their lives and have affairs. Some take their frustrations out on their wives and families. Psyk occasionally goes nuts and does stupid shit, but he has never hurt me, he has never cheated on me, and no matter what you think about some of the stories he tells about himself here in WTF?, he has never crossed the line into any real danger. In fact, the most danger he faced all night was trying to get into bed when he felt like sleeping…)

Psykotic: Ok.
Im home onow. back on the computer.
Im in troubletown now. this was a BAD idea.
It was fun though
I think i took out apart of the door when I came in
More montser, another bowl Im goning to straiten out.
things will be fine@
All is well@!
Shit!

(Finally, after shooting him with one of my “Happiness” darts and wrangling him into his cage, He sleeps and wakes the next morning with a desire to take it easy.)

Psykosity: Good Morning Gabfam! Daddy is feeling a little delicate today.
I didn’t realize how bad the hangover was until I realized that I had spent ten minutes trying to log onto my daughter’s old Etch-A-Sketch.
Have a great Saturday. I am going to watch cartoons until someone comes by to shoot me in the face with a bazooka.
P.S. Does anyone at the Corner Pub know where I got this chicken?

(When it’s all said and done, after three decades of marriage to Psyk, I can say this: Yes, sometimes Psyk can be wild, crazy, a little weird, and even occasionally idiotic, but he is MY wild, crazy, weird occasional idiot, and I love him. Thanks to Sparky and the staff of WTF? and The Beaverlick Gazette for opening up an avenue of creativity for him that he didn’t know he possessed.

BTW: I will send you all some tranquilizer darts and blowguns. You will need them…)

Womenology – 100 – Introduction To Womanry

Part 1 of 3
Being And Mystery

by WildMan aka, George Palczynski

September, 2019

Preface

Women, ladies, dames, broads, damsels, lassies, chicks, sheilas, squeezes, babes, gals, and girls – I have anticipated your… female… reactions! They are on the order/variation of:
“Oh no! Not another one of these boasting gloaters that hadn’t ever read ’50 Shades of Grey’, going on about knowing ALL about women!”

Well no, I’m not one of those boasting gloaters who believes he knows everything about women… omg… don’t you just HATE THEM!

Though… though… though with what I do know about women, I could lecture at the Sorbonne. And more the wiser the world would be about women, which is presently altogether too willfully obtuse and preciously deluded.

In The Beginning

Woman had been formed from the man’s rib. This tale may be parable but it is medically sound. Bone is reliably chockablock with pristine DNA.  And GOD apparently gave the plumbing some thought but little revelation. GOD does NOT push the envelope – I think Einstein had first made that discovery.

The human is a dichotomous creature. Either it is male or female; and then, to the higher form, man or woman. i.e., the mold and the molded.

It was bone that made Eve human, gave her substance made her near as much, physically, as Adam. But what had made her woman beyond the aforementioned plumbing? What had made her pysche womanish? What had made her think as a woman; feel as a woman; perceive as a woman? There’s a mystery here and it’s going to remain one… and with reason.

“Insofar as something retains mystery it commands interest.”
– George Palczynski

Mystery, Thy Name Is Woman

“I am not a woman—I am a world. My garments have but to fall, and you shall discover upon my person a succession of mysteries.”
– Queen of Sheba (to St Anthony)
Gustave Flaubert (The Temptation of St Anthony)

The Queen has not even broached the subject revealing mind/soul. Just at that level, merely the flesh, she is mystery – and don’t men know it.

In whatever of the brain’s nodules and relative synapses this ‘sex stuff’ is contained, however widely or narrowly dispersed, lies the greatest mystery of all, excepting the one – the WHY? of it all. But of everything else it is the greatest. Long after deep thinkers and esotericists have resolved the Theory of Everything into one neat beautiful equation, the mystery between man/woman will remain unresolved.

Men are crazy; Women are nuts. Fact – crazy and nuts are NOT the same.

What’s The Big Mystery?

Crazy is digital; nuts is analog.

Men are digital, binary. Women are analog and multivalent. Note the inherent complexity as to women… multivalent! Already, just sixteen words in, and a guy’s gotta start looking stuff up in Websters.

Men are on/off, yes/no, ones and zeros.

Women are yes and no – simultaneously; they are mostly maybe; yes with a little no; ‘no’ with a scaled down ‘yes’ micro-organically inserted.

You see the dilemma… yes?… no?

Men think digitally, expect to be responded to digitally. A man’s response to a man is digital/binary; yes/no, agree/disagree; drink/fight; or, rock-paper-scissors.

Women think multivalently… good luck with that. I’m not writing a damn book.

Men are mechanical; women are mechanical. Aha! Yes!

…Not so fast.

Men are simply mechanical; women are quantumly mechanical. Acquaint yourselves with the overwhelming complexity involved with the quantum microcosm – convoluted is the worst that can be said about it – maddeningly counterintuitive the best. THAT is woman.

Men are 1 or 0, or 1000101001, always precisely there and nowhere else. Woman, on the other hand, being an analog wave may be, quantumly, at two places at the same time; can be both at the crest and trough of the wave – simultaneously. I mean WTF?! How maddening is that… to have to deal with.

Yeah, no… I don’t have to hear it to know. Misogynist!… Terrified! Angry! Broken! Hurt! Damaged! STOP reading COSMO ladies!

Everyone Knows

It’s long been known. To say it is all not much understood is true; to say it is all not much true is ornery contrariness.

Women are idiots; men are lunatics.
Rebecca West

Women are wonderfully gifted with powers of observation. This is their wheelhouse. Ms. West was twice again a powerhouse. She was not only pithily observant she was pithily expressive. In the above quote, she reveals one of the truly great observations regarding the psychic chasm that separates the sexes. She’s not been proven wrong.

Women are idiots; because women are complex. Women make note of detail – all manner of details; and will overload their capacity for them. Women will make too much of details; conclude much the wrong thing based on details. With enough detail, ‘x’ may be inferred where ‘y’ had, in fact, been implied. In other words, women, to be repaired, if any man dared an attempt to repair them, would be fitted with a fine filter.

Imagine details as dots to connect. There is a point reached of too many details/dots, so that when they are connected they are not so much a shape, as a Jackson Pollock abstraction; and at that, left more to surmise about than know of.

Men are lunatics. Because men are simple, Men see things as though by moonlit silhouettes, without much, if any detail. It has the shape of a house? It’s a house. The shape is horsey? It’s a horse. What matter the detail, what can it matter if it’s a roan, palomino, or piebald – a horse is a horse… The recognition of the essentiality of a thing is knowledge of the thing – done. Men would be better off seeing things in the morning’s dawn, with some detail. But this is not about men but about women.

And on her we shall continue in Part 2 of 3:

Womenology 101 – Basics of Womanry

A Word About Flying with Firearms

Flying today is bad enough, but if you’re flying with a firearm, pack your patience. I’ve had to declare a firearm a number of times when flying, and for the most part, it hasn’t been too terribly bad. But one time sticks out in my head, and looking back, I can now find a modicum of humor in it.

When you check in, you have to tell the ticket agent you have a firearm, show it and the empty magazine, and show there is no round chambered. Put it in the case, throw the lock on, and pray it’s in your suitcase when you land.

So I am checking in and quietly tell the agent (a “wee” fella) that I have a firearm to declare, and I start to pop open the case…I look at him and the expression on his face is one of abject horror. He stammers “One moment” and flees, flapping his wrists. I half expected him to wail “I don’t know nothin’ about birthin’ no babies!” Well, I don’t know about babies (doubt he ever had to worry about that) but he sure as hell didn’t know his airline’s protocol for checking in a gun.

The next thing I know, there’s a supervisor, two other agents, and Butterfly McQueen standing in front of me…supervisor says, “I’m training these two…can you start from the beginning, so they know what to do?” Sure, I’m fine with that. Meanwhile, all the people in line are watching in fascination, much to my chagrin.

I start from the beginning, go through all the steps, show the gun, etc., lock it up, put it in my suitcase, and wait…then the questions to the supervisor begin. “What do we look for?” “How do we know there’s no bullet in the gun?” (Pay attention, Scooter – I just racked it back to show you) and the best: “Do we need a key for the lock on the case?” (That’d be a big fat NO, sweetie)

Paperwork finished, suitcase closed, and the supervisor says “Any last questions?” And I hear “Lady, what kind of gun is that?” I just smiled.

The kicker is I was coming home from my mother’s funeral, and in my carry-on was a very large amount of cash and her jewelry…gun, cash, jewelry…all I needed was a kilo of cocaine, and I was Scarface’s sister. Makes me wonder if I’m on some “list” with HSA?

On Becoming A Dad (Part Two)

It was time…

The ride to the hospital was quick and uneventful, largely because the hospital was around the corner and down two blocks from our apartment.

At this point, my wife and I were pretty badly sleep deprived; her by virtue of her feeling like someone had parked a Honda Accord in a mailbox, and me because I was sleeping on the floor next to the couch on which slept a mailbox that someone parked a Honda Accord in.

As soon as we hit the emergency room, there was chaos. Sick people shocked by the language my wife was using and the detailed threats of violence, my mother, busy stroking my wife’s forehead and humming Christian hymns softly; as if preparing for the exorcism that was going to have to be performed. Two nurses and an orderly appeared, having just graduated clown school, and, for the safety of herself and others, strapped my wife into a wheelchair and rode her into the examination room while a small person who looked like a bridge troll kept following me and asking me questions about my insurance.

Insurance. What a joke. The love of my life had just minutes before threatened to gut me and use my skin for curtains. What insurance was going to give me assurance that she was going to be all right, that our child was going to be born healthy; that I wouldn’t spend the best years of my life with a curtain rod up my ass?

I answered no to all the questions I was asked about my wife’s health, possible allergies, and whether or not I wanted fries with my order, flung my insurance cards at the bridge troll, and signed my name on pieces of paper. I had no idea what the papers said, for all I know I own a nice plot of land in upper lower Slobovia and pledged my epiglottis for important medical research.

Of course, in this day and age, it had long been assumed that I was going to go into the birthing room.

Guys: DON’T GO INTO THE BIRTHING ROOM! For the man, the birth of the child should happen just like it used to happen on TV: the woman off camera in some mysterious room behind double doors that flap open and closed when nurses and doctors are rushing to and fro, the man pacing frantically, wide-eyed, smoking constantly, occasionally stopping one of the nurses to ask pitifully, “How is my wife, Nurse? How is my WIFE?”. Ideally, this scene should be in complete black and white as well.

Guy, I’m telling you, if you go into the room, you are going to see horrors straight from the very heart of hell, horror that you will never forget. Is the birth of a child a beautiful miracle? Miracle, yes. Beautiful? Short answer: No. Long answer: NNNNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOO!

I got strapped into my gown (It was a lovely floor length affair, taffeta, v-neck, I felt like a PRINCESS!), put on my paper shower cap and mask (gorilla) and entered the arena with the chair and whip that someone had given me.

My wife was on the gurney; her legs akimbo with her feet in the metal stirrups, and I made a mental note that it was a scene very much like this that got me into all this trouble in the first place. My wife insisted that my mother be present and she was; standing at the head of the gurney, stroking my wife’s forehead and humming softly to her.

Wait a minute, my mom was standing where I WAS SUPPOSED TO STAND! Where am I going to be? I was counting on being on the side of the little waist curtain that was NOT the business side! IF ignorance is bliss, and it is, I wanted to remain as blissful as I possibly could!

The Doctor came in, took a look at the situation, clapped his hands together and smiled. “Well Dad, with a little bit of luck, we will have this baby out before the Superbowl!”

I had forgotten, this was Superbowl Sunday. That’s when I saw the TV in the room, the sound of the never-ending pregame banter adding to the cacophony of the room.

“Dad,” said the eager physician, “I have to go down the hall. I will leave you in the capable hands of my nurse practitioner until the baby crowns.” Then, with a smirk, he added: “I want you to grab a leg and hold on!” and then he turned and walked out of the room.

Wait…WHAT???

“You heard the doctor,” said the nurse practitioner, a woman who looked like she paid for her education in healthcare by playing linebacker for the Green Bay Packers, as she assumed the catcher’s position.

So, there I was, looking down the business end of the Birthing Process. There are some things a man is not supposed to see when he is looking at this part of his wife’s body; a small, scrunched up face is one of them.

I won’t go into too much detail about what happened during the process of my daughter being born, partially because I believe discretion is the better part of valor, and partially because I like sleeping inside my house and, if my wife reads this and I go into the real details, I will be sleeping on the porch for the entire summer and no one wants that. I hate it, the neighbors complain because, in the world of snoring, I am known as a “Window Rattler”.

They told my wife she couldn’t have an epidural until it was time to push because, with the epidural, she wouldn’t know when it was time to push. I didn’t understand that, and neither did she. The baby was in the birth position, turning her head as if trying to drill out of her mother, her head grinding on my wife’s pelvic bone.

“YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND, YOU BASTARD! I NEED THAT F#^%#ING EPIDURAL NOW!”

Now, let me just say that the staff at the hospital we were at was more than competent, but I found out later that, because this was a Catholic hospital and the staff thought my wife and I were unmarried because we have different last names (she kept her maiden name), had a little disdain for us; an attitude that was aggressively dealt with when my wife saw her own doctor after the birth. He kicked some serious ass and after that, our every wish was their command.

The baby became stuck. A pelvic bone was keeping the baby from exiting the birth canal. My baby’s heartbeat was becoming irregular, and my wife was minutes away from going into shock.

Then, my mother kicked in. My mother, who had been a nurse for my entire life, had a certain…way, a certain otherworldly quality to her touch…you immediately felt better, calmed down, breathed easier when she touched you.

She continued to stroke my wife’s forehead, ran her fingers gently through my wife’s hair, and softly murmured, “Relax, honey. Everything is going to be all right. Just listen to the sound of my voice…”

Then, the doctor appeared with the industrial strength salad tongs and, after some work, I remember my baby daughter being held by the doctor in the light…everything in that moment ceased to exist. There was just me, in the darkness, with some hands holding my baby up to the light. She was crying, a big, healthy cry; a cry that sounded like a little lamb. It was a cry so distinctive that my wife and I could pick it out from all the other babies in the nursery down the hall.

“My baby is crying,” my wife would tell a nurse from her bed in the recovery room. “Could you bring her to me?”

” I’ll check, ma’am,” said the nurse, sure that my wife was wrong. Then the nurse would come back with our daughter.

“How in the world could you tell your daughter’s cry from all the others?” said the astonished nurse.

Well, you just could.

After that timeless moment when I first laid my eyes on my daughter, the Marx Brothers came running in, grabbed the baby and put her into a something that looked like a clear plastic freezer drawer. They were counting toes, listening to her breathing, just bothering her in general. My wife was frantic, trying to get off the gurney to see if the baby was all right, the nurses were holding her down…everything was fine.

They laid my daughter in my wife’s arms, and at that moment, I lost the ability to complete a sentence or speak in any way that sounded like a reasonably intelligent human being.

I was a Dad.

Well, all that was twenty-seven years ago as of this writing. A lot of things have gone on since then.

I remember reading to her and noticing that she wasn’t looking at the pictures, but looking at the strange marks on the page and trying to figure out how those letters were making the words that I was reading to her. I remember her first word (Dada), her first steps, “naked baby time”, where she would run through the house without a stitch of clothes after her bath, giggling as we “tried” to catch her to dry her off.

She had me play video games with her, watch her favorite movies OVER AND OVER again. She turned me on to Japanese metal, I turned her on to Led Zeppelin. She turned me on to Naruto and One Piece, I turned her on to Hunter Thompson, Kurt Vonnegut, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. My wife and I showed her what marriage really looked like when you take the vows seriously; she grew up to find her right man and begin the journey that my wife and I begun thirty years ago this year.

I changed her first diaper. I changed a lot of her diapers, but I take pride that I was the first to change her diapers; and now we come to the point: the real question I wanted to ask and the reason I wrote this screed in the first place.

What the hell was that in that diaper? It didn’t smell, but it was some kind of black…what? Tub grout? Something to patch drywall? Some substance that they use to fill potholes?

I have no idea, but soon after that, we were home. My wife was taking a well-deserved rest in our actual bed, I was sitting with my brand-new daughter in her bassinet in the living room. I looked over the side, and saw her looking and me. She seemed to smile at me, and then she farted.

My girl!

The Accidental PUA

Wildside Tales

by Wild Man, aka George Palczynski

Once Upon A Time I Was A PUA… Once, Kinda

What is a PUA? A PUA is a pick up artist; the envy of schlubs the world over. What is a schlub? A schlub is a male human who routinely trips over his tongue and most anything else when in proximity to a girl with distinctly girlish features… i.e., pretty. In other words, the PUA and the Schlub are on opposing terminals of a great lineal near cosmic spectrum. Where am I on the spectrum? Somewhere in that great place that’s called “the middle”. I insist it’s the middle nearer PUA. If anyone has reason to insist that assessment takes liberties with reality… keep it to yourself.

The following is based on actual events. Where memory does not well preserve the dialogue, it meticulously preserves the essence:

The place is crowded. A handsome female sits alone at a generous table for two. Twenty minutes later – status quo ante. I’m standing. I don’t mind standing. I am a young enough buck. I could strike a pose with the best of them – power, strength, elegance, and grace.

Aside: Bear with me. I claim, here, dramatic license. It’s my experience, my story, my memory, my perception, my finer points. Deal with it as best you can without resorting to speculative ornery dubiety… all right?

Resumption:

But I will not lead you astray. Let’s work backwards. I had grace… …when I was not moving. When I moved I was not clunky/awkward but… nearer them than graceful. To look upon me for the first magnificent moment, the better part of the population would have bet this bloke had it – grace. I hadn’t; just looked it. Mind, I was not a bumbler/stumbler. I could successfully dodge the furniture with seeming aplomb, but I could not dance on and around it like Astaire and Ginger.

Elegance! Yeeeaaah… …not so much; even though it didn’t require movement. I would cut a better figure in coat and tie than anything casual – but… but that’s true of most any guy; and I wasn’t wearing a coat and tie. It’s a bar with a big screen TV, a big ball game and happy drunks… and it was still morning. Power, strength, yeah, no sham there; it was unmistakable, though, not Promethean.

So, there I was, a mixed bag… and didn’t any of what was in that bag appear to be Adonis. So, there again, the record – stripped down to the truth. Now for the tale that’s as true.

To The Chase

I saunter over to the table for two with two sturdy chairs and the one handsome woman.

WM: Might I sit down… my name’s George?

Her: There must be an empty seat somewhere.

WM: Maybe, but none have you sitting next to it.

Her: (LOOK-THINK… near imperceptible eye-roll) SILENCE.

Aside: My Brain Churns Wildly! In all of a nanosecond, the following crosses my mind:

“CRAP! Did I just say that!… WTF man… Get IT THE FUCK TOGETHER!… Holy and cripes sake!… STOP doing David Niven!”

This was so unlike me, so alien, so out of character, so peculiar, so queer, so freaky-creepy… …but… I got my share of cool too… forgot to mention that.

Resumption:

WM: Look, I got a slightly bum leg – honest. I’ll leave soon as your friend shows… and drinks, on me.

Her: (with a slapdash flash of reluctance): Why not?

WM: (waves over waitress) What’ll you have?

Her:Drambuie coffee.

WM: What’s that?

Her: Shot of Drambuie in a cup of coffee and whip cream on top.

WM: What’s Drambuie?

Her: You never heard of Drambuie?

WM: Heard the name – don’t know what it is.

Her: Scotch and honey liqueur.

WM: (to waitress): Make that two. (to HER) sounds interesting… What’s your name?

Her: Carol

WM: Here for the game I take it.

Her: Yep.

WM: What’ll we talk about over the Drambuies?

Her: Must we?

WM: It’s that or awkward silence.

Her: I’m okay with that.

WM: Yeah right.

Her: Yeah right.

WM: You’ll regret it.

Her: Yeah?

WM: Yeah, all sorts of regrets.

Her: I doubt it.

WM: No one can resist being curious of a stranger. You’ll wonder tonight… hmm… was he rich, or, a cool guy, or… could he blow a mean trumpet?… might…

Her: (Laughter)

WM: There yah go – icebreaker! It’s on Carol.

Her: What’s on?

WM: We’re on. We’re gonna talk – not sit here like strangers, afraid the other’ll bite. Women always want to talk… talk.

Her: About what?

WM: Whatever. No limits. Anything.

Her: You start.

WM: Okay… what’s your favorite color?

Her: (another demure eyeroll… and some strange indecipherable sound nasally emitted – a ‘snort’!?!)

WM: Wait now. Before your eyes roll out of your head, I have first to tell you what your favorite color is by whatever means – guess, educated guess, deduction, induction… prayer…

Her: You swear this is a game?

WM: I swear it. When it’s your turn, you’ll ask me something and then tell me what you expect I’d say… capeesh?

Her: Yes.

WM: So… what’s your favorite color? I say it’s… …green.

Her: How did you get that?

WM: Your scarf has long swirls of dusky green. The thing hanging from your neck has a green stone of some kind… emerald? So… both your highlights are green, so… green!

Her: It’s green. And it’s not an emerald.

WM: Hah! Great, I’m up one. Your turn.

Her: Okay… What’s… your… favorite… … …lady part?

WM: I don’t blush easy… …and you’d say it was…

Her: Oh, forgot. Your favorite is… … …the breasts.

WM: Why so?

Her: I caught you looking.

WM: Looking at the pendant.

Her: That’s probably a lie.

WM: Now, you don’t know me well enough to tell if I’m lying… and… I won’t lie to you.

Her: It’s not the breasts?

WM: Not.

Her: What then?

WM: My favorite Lady Part is the philtrum.

Her: The WHAT?

WM: Philtrum. p-h-i-l-t-r-u-m

Her: That’s not a thing.

WM: You mean, you, a grown woman, don’t know what your philtrum is?

Her: You’re making it up.

WM: you mean to say, you a grown woman, had never had a guy compliment your philtrum? You poor neglected….

Her: You made it up.

WM: I told you I wouldn’t lie and I haven’t.

Her: Okay. What is it?

WM: Tell you what. Let me touch yours. …just for the purpose of pointing it out to you.

Her: Okay.

WM: REALLY! Right here with everyone around?

Her: Sure. I trust you.

WM: You have a page on me written already… or… you’re just hoping?

Her: It’s a feeling, my feelings are usually right.

WM: Okay, I need to get close to you, and I’ll need you to close your eyes.

Her: (Closes her eyes)

WM: (waiting seconds… puts finger gently onto the valley between her nose and upper lip).

Her: (Opens her eyes) That’s a philtrum?

WM: Yes, and yours is near exceptionally…

Her: So help me, if you’re making this up, I’ll…

WM: I told you I wouldn’t lie to you, and I haven’t.

Her: Why is my philtrum…

WM: (interrupting) it insinuates itself onto your upper lip and curls it up and out. Gives your lips the cupid’s bow shape guys like.

Her: You think maybe you have a little too much interest about such things?

WM: I have to.

Her: Why?

WM: That’s my realm of expertise.

Her: What are you an expert on… women?

WM: Hardly. I’m an expert on pretty… cute, and beautiful.

Her: Now that’s a lie.

WM: Is not. It’s a boast, there’s a difference. Guys ought never lie, they must always boast – it’s a genetic imperative.

Her: You are so… … …

WM: What, what?

Her: Full of it.

WM: That’s an evasion.

Her: That was nonsense… ge-net-ic.

WM: What is it when the male of the species fans his tail, splays his feathers, sings his chirps, or thumps his chest?

Her: I don’t know.

WM: They’re ALL manners of boasting. My fan’s greater than his; my feathers brighter, my chirps happier, and my thumps harder than his… BOASTING

Her: (long silence)… And your favorite part is the… philtrum?

WM: (humongous smile – VICTORY!) Yes.

Her: Hard to believe.

WM: But true, entirely… and I couldn’t imagine explaining it to anyone’s satisfaction – even my own. But it’s the first thing I notice on women – not lying.

Denoument

The clock and I made it noon. It may as well have struck midnight. Her friend showed. He was not a boyfriend – he hadn’t an edge to him. My first thought – I could take him – easy, (unless he knew some of that jujitsu shit).

I excused myself immediately. Carol made all the right noises about staying, joining them. I had a previous engagement – friends that had invited me. She bid me wait a second and wrote something on a table napkin – handed it to me – it was a phone number. I requited in kind and borrowed her pen to do so. No problem. I was feeling not a little ‘damn good’ handing it to her and walking away without another word between us.

Aside: Not one moment’s calculation. The natural ebb and flow of girl and guy as it had been ordained ‘in the beginning’. The closest I’d ever been to a PUA, and it had all the good vibrations of pure intentions and not one iota of the craft of cunning.

Life was good that day.

By the by: the home team won the big game.