Freudian Slips: January 2007

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Location: Irony, New Jersey, United States

Life takes us many places. It's a box of chocolates and a Hansel and Gretal trail of candy wrappers. I have filmed as an actor in The Happening, Invincible, The Lovely Bones, The Bounty Hunter, The Greek American, Bazookas, Limitless, TV's Its Always Sunny in Philly, Outlaw, New York, The Warrior, The Nail, Game Change, Cold Case, & commercial work includes The Philadelphia Eagles, Septa, Coors, Turbo Tax & Carnival Cruises. Freudian Slips spotlights irony in short story format.

January 30, 2007

May I Take Your Order?

-What would you order from The Trailer of Life? I'm ordering one viable book publisher with a side order of movie rights.


January 28, 2007

When Tomorrow Comes

I do not claim to be a visionary but I do tend to think about the future in an ever-changing world. With the world requiring greater reliance on sophisticated technological equipment, parents are raising children who can aptly type 75 words per minute on a computer keyboard while simultaneously instant messaging to six different people. These same sedentary children seem to lack the necessary social skills to articulate their feelings one on one.
I tantalized over what institutions from the present might still be iconic in the next generation. I closed my eyes and arrived at some introductory future phrases single people might say to each other when first meeting.
“What do you sell on Ebay?” he asked.
She plays hard to get. “After you tell me whatcha got on your Ipod?”
Then he delivers the pick-up line, “What is your instant message name, I think I might like to type you some day.”


January 25, 2007

Curious Joe

It totally felt like a productive day. After some preliminary correspondence, I met with the owner of a unique store called The Curiosity Shoppe to close a business deal. The eclectic store for artists waiting for their big break is located at 529 South Fourth Street in Philadelphia, PA.
I signed a straightforward contract to have my novel Stop and Smell the Silk Roses garnish their shelves for sale. While it is a consignment business arrangement, it breathes new life into a book about a man who nearly died of insect bites then faced two years of mistaken identity with others before he finally found out who he was inside.
It tickled me pink when the lovely owner read an excerpt of my book aloud for the mingling customers. It felt wonderful discussing a future book signing at the store. Thereby feeling the wind beneath my wings, I started to feel prideful about my author inroads. When I got home, I kind of sort of in a round about way telephoned my mother directly from speed dial to make casual mention of the publicity for her stamp of approval.
Mom listened to everything I had to say, shared optimism, and then changed subjects. “Your brother John is in Tokyo on an important business trip with company delegates and your brother Jim met with the Governor of New Jersey today.”
-It is sometimes better to keep looking inside oneself then stopping to look around.


January 23, 2007

The Milkman

After hearing three seperate unsolicited compliments about Trickling Springs Creamery chocolate milk in a span of twelve hours, I had enough tempation in one half day. I stopped what I was doing and jetted down to the Amish Farm Market in Williamstown, New Jersey. After a twenty minute drive, my salivating tastebuds longed for its creamery goodness. Bursting through the front doors, I tugged on patron advice.
"Can anyone tell me where this fabulous chocolate milk is?"
There was no shortage of people who could answer this arcane question.
"Make a left here." a helpful customer said.
"You will see it on your right hand side." added another Good Samaritan.
A small crowd huddled around the cold case sporting glass milk bottles. I do not ever remember seeing a glass milk bottle before but there was no time for sentamentality or waiting for a milkman. Only quart size bottles were left on the shelf and one of them had my name on it. I snatched the first quart bottle from the cold case.
At the counter, I paid handsomely for the chocolate milk, a price that included leaving a $2.00 deposit on the bottle. But it was all mine, all mine! Back at my car, I marveled at the cold temperature of the milk throbbing out the glass bottle in my hand. I turned the bottle upside down for a shake of the contents but there was really no need. The grass-fed cows already mixed this sucker! I popped open the plastic bottle and drank the creamiest robust chocolate milk that this food critic has ever tasted.
I raved about this chocolate milk to at least three people over the next twelve hours on a bloated stomach.
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January 21, 2007

Saving a Few Bucks

There is nothing quite like an early morning service call by Comcast Cable's best installers. The second set of installers trying to hook me up with a digital phone line agreed with the long gone lackey first team. It was an impossible install due to the layout of the house, finished basement, the distance between my computer modem and the telephone nid, and the added variable of the linked home security system. In the backyard, the three of us stared at the house exhausting all avenues to problem solve or fish lines around the house.
The lead technician comforted my disappointment not being able to save a few bucks. “Wireless digital cable is just coming out." he announced. "It should be available in about a year.”
“Wireless digital phone will follow.” bragged the second technician. “Your installation problem will be solved by a wireless nid.”
With backs to our three acres of woodland, I marveled about man’s ingenuity. “It’s a technological revolution. I can’t keep up!” I exalted. “The world is getting smaller and smaller.”
In the middle of our revelry, we heard rustling coming from the woods behind us. Somebody must have cued the deer because a large antlered buck walked right by our position. The startled technicians and I froze in our tracks. Two smaller deer could be seen shaded by the edge of the tree line.
As if looking for a way out, the deer wandered along the perimeter of the woods. Any closer to a manmade structure and Comcast would have charged the deer for cable hook-up. The deer knew what we were talking about. In their shrinking world, they were having a difficult time keeping up too.
“Saving a few bucks.” I mumbled to myself while fumbling for my cell phone camera.


January 18, 2007

A Point to Ponder

Upon careful review of some year-end financial paperwork mailed to the house, my fiscal savvy wife made the following family announcement:
“Children, if anything tragic happens to your mother, I want to let you know that I have x amount of dollars saved in deferred compensation. Each of you will get 50% of what is deferred.”
My stepson lamented, “Mom, I cannot think of anything worse to think about.”
“Oh, I can.” I commented. “I would lose my wife and get nothing.”


January 16, 2007

A Testy Situation

As difficult as this may be to understand, going to the bathroom is a waste of time for an obsessive-compulsive personality type. Bathroom business is unsanitary and it disengages any compulsive act going on at the time. I am ashamed but relieved to admit that I wait until the very last moment to stop what I am doing to toilet. Although it defies sensibility and pain management, I have been doing this bad habit since childhood.
As a teenager, I remember going outside to play in the summer time with the bathroom on my mind. About an hour later, my friends had no idea of the trouble I placed myself in. By waiting until the last moment, I put myself about a quarter of a mile from home and the nearest toilet. I am speaking from experience when I say that running with flapping buttocks may be the worst activity to engage in while holding back the inevitability of a bowel movement. Running for home, my stomach churned as my legs galloped.
Closer. Closer. I could see my house now but everything wasteful lined up for an immediate exit. I plowed through the front door and hustled for the downstairs bathroom with reckless abandon. I slammed the toilet seat down, hoisted down my pants, and eliminated with the proficiency of a laxative running its course. Afterwards, I exhaled and relaxed by leaning on the back of the toilet with my head back in a semi-supine position. I barely made it to the bathroom but all was again right with the world.
When I felt a hitchhiker crawling on my testicles, I suspected more trouble. I lifted my head from its tilt back position to check out the odd sensation. My worst fear was realized. Prancing around on my testicles was a menacing looking black wasp. If I had not defecated before, I would have voided at that precise moment. Bullets of perspiration eeked out of my body from every pore. Incapacitated in abject fear, I counter intuitively struggled to not flinch or move. The wasp had the cajones to stop walking, look up at me, then dug its stinger into my right testicle. I screamed and clawed myself silly trying to rid that insect from my possession. I believed I literally jumped out of my clothes there on the toilet. Counting two sultry honeymoons, I have never felt that much heat in my midsection. In a matter of minutes, this swell guy earned elephant balls. In what has turned out to be a lifetime war against stinging insects, I lost my first battle as bad as one can lose.
Call it the process of elimination but going to the bathroom when you are suppose to can take the sting out of waiting.


January 14, 2007

Fly Like an Eagle...Fan

Following a 27-24 crushing playoff defeat to the insurgent New Orleans Saints, another Philaldephia Eagles season comes to an abrupt end. No need to worry about this fan. I'll be okay.


January 11, 2007


"I want to make you proud, Pops."

Freudian Slips rarely covers sequels but this one fell into my lap. While working out in the free weight room of my gym, I was revisited by the vein-popping gladiator and Napoleon, the sadistic and masochistic father and son workout team. In the recesses of the gym, the freestanding gladiator dropped his dumbbells to let me know he had finished his set of curls. When the dumbbells bounced off the shock absorbing mats and rolled near my ankles, I figured as much. I moved over to the next workout bench to be out of harm’s way.

An older woman, who masked her baldness with a bright scarf, offered an inviting hello to Napoleon. Napoleon and this woman acted as if they had not seen each other in a long time. A brief conversation ensued. From my decampment, I noticed that the woman reduced her speaking voice. I could hear about half of the conversation. She ran through a gamut of emotions. She told him of her sudden illness, the domino search for a medical doctor who could find a correct diagnosis, her hysterical reaction to learning then dealing with her cancer, the chemotherapy, and now her strength to return to the gym.

“There is my son.” pointed Napoleon. “Over there in the blue shorts.”

The only two members working out in the room wore blue shorts, gladiator and me. The gladiator seemed peeved about something that could have been as simple as my wearing blue. He started to huff, puff, and mumble profanities under his breath. I started to shake my head across the grain like I couldn’t be related to these dysfunctional fools.

“Not not him.” answered Napoleon. “The other guy is my son.”

The conversation between Napoleon and the cancer victim ended with a heartfelt hug. Napoleon walked back into the free weight room. The woman started to walk around the track. I thought of the self-irony, to be included in a blog story I already started to write in my head about these recurring characters. The gladiator now completely ignored his father. Napoleon whispered something that turned the gladiator’s face beet red.

“She has cancer.” Napoleon admitted louder. “Be understanding.”

The gladiator had enough. He ate cancer chexx as a breakfast cereal. “She is weak.” he mocked. “You are here to get stronger. Get out of my f--king face, dad.”

“You don't understand. She has been though a rough ordeal, that’s all.”

“What I don't understand is what does her cancer have to do with you? Nothing.”

The dad cowered a tail between his legs. “I’ll catch up in the workout. Just tell me what I missed when I was talking to her.”

The gladiator said, “You are here to workout not listen to an old bitty’s sob story. We came here to pump iron.”

“Give me one more chance.”

“I am ashamed of you. I don’t want to even look at you. Scram. You’re on your own today, Pops. You make me sick. You can’t even do a complete workout without jerking off with the ladies.”

As I did some lat pull downs looking rather incredulous, Napoleon grabbed a set of 25-pound dumbbells off the rack. The gladiator snatched the dumbbells from his possession then got in his father’s face.

“Why don’t you go hold her hand and leave me out of it. You and the old lady can skip around the track like two little girls.”

When your life is full of mirrors, it is a reflection on you.


January 09, 2007

Retail Pricing

This is not what you would expect to find next to a greeting card rack in a supermarket. I can understand why these donuts are not selling on markdown clearance. Always remember the "I" in "As is" when labeling signage at midnight because you do not want your loss leader to be bringing up the rear.


January 07, 2007

The Tartar Sauce Incident

When I knew Otto Warburge in the late 1980’s, he was a fifty year old cigar smoking moderately retarded male whose body failed him by middle age. Although still categorized as an elopement risk, Otto was almost too old to be considered a runaway threat by the institution that housed him. No matter what his chart chronicled, Otto's creative use of vocabulary could put a wide smile on any face.
In the dining area, meals were served family style. To a varying degree of success, clients passed large bowls and plates of food around the busy table. I drew the assignment of helping to supervise the lunch meal. Make no mistake about the aroma, the fare of the day consisted of fish sticks and tater tots.
I overheard Otto make a simple request to his peers sitting at the other end of the table. “Pass the retarder sauce.”
“The what?” I asked.
“The retarder sauce for the fish sticks.” repeated Otto.
I picked up the small bowl of what I thought he was looking for. “Do you mean the tarter sauce, Otto?”
“That is what I said stupid, the retarder sauce.”
The English language may never have been more self-incriminating.


January 04, 2007

Attack of the Clones

I remember my mother’s predictable queasy reaction to cracking a rare double yolk egg into a sizzling cast iron frying pan. Although her expression is one that I have not seen in a long time, mother’s discomfort with these rare hatchings still etch-a-sketches in my memory banks.
A burgeoning term up for public consumption makes my stomach revolt every time I dare think about it. The unsavory term is.......cloned food. The FDA has deemed this food process healthy but it touches me spiritually like a body of Christ communion at a Planet of the Apes convention. I refuse to digest the science and slaughter of it all. I can see it now. A butcher’s sign will advertise BABY LAMB $8.99 per pound. The fine print will read like something out of a petri dish: "A meat substitute artificially flavored farm raised cloned food."
I need a new improved barf bag made of 100% recycled products right about now.


January 02, 2007

When Touch Football Feels Like Tackle

“Jim, your Boy Scout troop is organizing a Father and Son touch football game. I just got an email. They are looking to play this Saturday at 1pm behind the elementary school. The weather is supposed to be unseasonably mild. It will be kind of like a holiday get together and reunion for all the families. What do you say, you and me join them for a rousing game of pigskin?
Seated on his bed holding the controls to a video game and so much more, Jim looked up at me. Without the slightest bit of entertainment, my stepson politely squeaked, “I’ll be with my father.”
-Reaching out to touch someone never felt more like tackle football.


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