Saturday, April 04, 2009

Ed Shepp Receives Medal of Kindness from Kingdom of Norway

OK, so here's a bit of news that I just can't let pass without sharing it with the wurld: I have received a Medal of Kindness. Technically it's from RJ in Norway, who sent it to me because I'm sending him the new Prince CD, because it's not yet available in Norway, but I find that it's just easier for people if I tell them that it's from the Kingdom of Norway. (Is it still a kingdom? I know more about Sweden's govt than Norway's.) I got it in the mail a couple days ago, and it was a surprise. I almost thought the medal got into the package by mistake, but when I asked RJ, he told me that he gave it to me because I deserved a medal for my kindness and to go with my crown. And when I thought about it, I couldn't help but agree.

And believe me, after today I feel that I have earned the medal. Have you ever been to the post office in SoHo? No? Well, have you ever been to a crappy post office? I'm sure you have, and let me tell you: today SoHo was the worst of the worst post offices. Not only did I wait over a half an hour to mail a $3 package (because if you're sending a package overseas you have to put a customs form and someone behind the counter has to ask you if there's anything fragile or dangerous in it; meaning, you can't just drop it in the bin), but there was a guy in front of me in line who decided that his goal for the day was to be an asshole. He kept bitching to everyone in line in front of him about the guy who was mailing 30 packages. Yeah, it was a pain in the ass, but talking loudly about him in an effort to shame him doesn't help anyone in the real world. The guy was talking so loudly I feared that fisticuffs might develop! But what I feared more was that the guy would turn around and start whingeing to me. Luckily he didn't; I was sort of hoping that I looked strange enough that he thought I was a freak. After all, I was wearing me medal. Nonetheless, while in line I was trying to think of a strategy to use to deflect this person's complaining should he try it on me. I wondered if it would work if I told him that I don't speak English. Could I conceivably look "European" enough for him to believe it? And if he did, would he then start bitching about "immigrants" or tourists? I think if he turned around, I wouldn't have pursued that strategy, because frankly, it's never worked with solicitors. And this being New York, some wipe would probably try to "interpret." I guess I'd have to pretend to speak Old Finnish or something. Odds were that there were Spanish, French, German and Swedish speakers there. But luckily I never had to suffer him.

But let me tell you: it was absolutely horrible. There were weird smells, ugly people, ugly accents, that annoying guy with all the packages, and those postal workers, who are sooooooooooooooo slllllllllloooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwww. Like unnecessarily slow. I've worked foodservice at theme parks and tourist traps in Florida, peeps, so I know when biatches are operating slowly. I didn't see any reason for the slowitude, but I had a theory: If the subways are a proof for the theory of evolution, then the post office is sure evidence of the persistence of lobotomies. I really think there oughtta be a sign in the post office that says something like: "Postal Service Employees Have Undergone Prefrontal Lobotomy." But enough of that.

I mentioned that I was wearing my medal. Well, you should have seen me. The picture in this entry is my rendering of what I looked like. I was wearing my red sweater with a black shirt and checkery tie, and tightass H&M pants with my medal and sneakers. The look that I was going for was "Supervillain cheerleader who is fundamentally good." Let's break it down: The sweater is a v-neck with white stripes. It feels very cheerleadery to me. If I pair it with chinos, I get the "cheerleader on a yacht" look. So it was the centerpiece. But instead of pairing it with the white shirt, I decided to pair it with a black shirt! :O That's how we get the "evil cheerleader" look. It's kind of like when you're watching a sitcom or Jem or a Mariah video: the "evil" version usually looks no different from the regular one, except ze's wearing black instead of white or has dark hair. Or cooler makeup, in the case of a cartoon. Ze's usually not very evil either, conspiring to "steal the cake" instead of something that you'd actually call evil. Anyway, so that's that. The supervillain comes in serendipitously: My glasses sit a bit crooked on my face, and it usually kinda frustrates me. But it totally works for the supervillain if you picture him as one of those who is hot-but-goofy in real life (the goofiness is supposed to connote a slight "offness" about the villain, sinister in the sense of sinister meaning left-handed) and usually becomes suave when costumed as the supervillain. I'm thinking Cillian Murphy in Batman, but I don't think he actually had crooked glasses. But think of that with crooked glasses. And, of course, the clingy pants from H&M, which fit into the look because they're not jeans, so they're more "wholesome," but they undercut the wholesome cheerleaderness by being too tight and fitting too sexylike. They're also ARGUABLY too young for me, so I bet there were people leering at me on the subway for that reason. But my thought was just like, "Yeah, biatch, I'm a 30something man rocking out a cheerleadery outfit and pants that fit tight AND a Medal of Kindness! You're just hating cuz you don't have a medal! Suck it!" And I say arguably because, while I may not have a great body overall, I've always had pretty good legs. Even for a guy. Because most men have what you might call "good legs" since men don't have cellulite and they typically don't deposit fat in the legs; but my legs are good even for a guys, if I dare say so myself. But enough of that.

So I think I'm going to be incorporating my Medal into my regular wardrobe. And if not my regular wardrobe, then definitely the "occasions to wear my Hermes tie" wardrobe. Because how can you get a Medal of Kindness and not wear it?!? I especially need to wear it because I have an unfortunate history of knowing h8ers who would go so far as to say that I am UNkind in public! Yes, the nerve! But I think my Medal of Kindness (and one from NORWAY no less, where you'd assume people are nicer because they have space and Norway has all that money, etc....) proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am in fact a kind person, even if I don't typically fawn all over people and kiss their asses. Another reason to wear it is when I do something very nice. Invariably (or maybe just with h8ers) when you do something very nice someone around you says, "What are you trying to do, get a medal???" Well, the next time someone says this, I can respond with: "I don't need a medal for kindness. I already HAVE one."

Incidentally I don't yet have a picture of the Medal, but I shall post one when I'm able to take a snapshot. I have no picturey phone, and my digital camera is on the fritz. And that's all for now.


Thursday, April 02, 2009

Notes for Stockholm. 1.

OK, so I'm going to Stockholm for a few days later in the year. Thank the cods the lowest airline prices of a century coincided with a time when I could actually buy them. Thank you, codz!!!! So I've started to begin to intend to endeavour to try to make lists. Of the stuff that I need before I go and stuff I have to remember and gaga woo woo. This part is important, the having protocols and goals. Because let's face the pickles here: a trip to Stockholm isn't just something you do any day. It's not like Jones Beach. And since there's always a chance that I'll never even get to Europe's shores again, I better make this shit COUNT. So one thing I'm doing is declaring it, to myself, as my birthday, Christmas and Halloween present and Easter basket all in one. And maybe even a really good birthday, like my 50th birthday present. (That might be a good idea; so when I reach 50 and, codwilling, a coterie is fawning over me asking what I want for my 50th birthday, I can say, "I've already had it, and I had it when I was 36.") That way I'll be determined to make it fun, because it's got a lot riding on it. Some people live their lives like that, you know. They put so much cathexis into being "a good woman" that they can never let themselves believe otherwise, because it's too costly. Yeah, so yeah.

Another thing I'm doing is basically the same thing as the first, but more the core of the matter: I'm just promising myself that I'm going to love it no matter what--if it rains, if it snows, if it goes all Cloverfied... Anything except missing the flight or some crap like that. That you can't make fun. And another thing I'm doing--and this is turning into a list of its own--is making it into some kind of social experiment. And probably recording it all too, cux I might as well make audio magic out of it too, right? But back to the social experiment. Yes, this is definitely going to be part of it. Hmmm, maybe 'anthropological observation' would be more fitting a term. Anyway, I'm going to observe any little thing I can think of, and I'll have to think of it before I go, and notate it. This all sounds way more highfalutin and smart than it is, but go with me here. So I'm trying to think of stuff to observe. And I've come up with two thoughts so far. So this will be the beginnzing of a bunch of lists, if not here than in my mind. Especially when I'm feeling contemplative. May it birthate many more lists.

(I think my 2Q:09 resolution will be to be the kind of person that people make lists about. Then someday 40 years hence I'd like to be talking to someone who is a close friend and have hir say to me, "Do you remember the Count of Boobookabooshkoo? He must have made 60,000 lists about you, he felt so strongly about you. For a summer there he had a staff of 1600 just sitting there paid top dollar to make lists about you all day. He had the country's best poets working for him. You know, like the person who wrote Toxic. Remember they were all published a couple years later and every contributor named a co-poet laureate of the country? It almost got a Nobel.")


--Look at the old people. You know how old people here, even the rich ones, look just ground down and beat the shit out of? See if they look that way there. Here's a rich, developed country with a good safety net and a populace with a reputation for good behavior at home. (Wow, Sweden really does have a good reputation, doesn't it? I suppose it can only be good for me to like it, right? I could imagine someone saying, "You know Ed? I used to think he was hopelessly godless, destined to blaspheme 1,000 things before he even wakes up in the morning? Well, did you know he likes Sweden? I always thought he'd want to live in some genie bottle lounging on rugs and inhaling and exhaling nothing but pure, overpowering pleasure. But maybe I was wrong--maybe he can live in a small town and behave like the good kids. I'm gonna introduce him to my friend Jesus again.") So add all these things together and surely you'd find "a good place for the elderly" in there somewhere. It just goes with the territory. That said, if that were the only thing that mattered to me, I suppose I'd be all about Japan, because they respect their elderly there. I think. But who wants to go through all that schooling and pressure?! And isn't that where they have suicide waves? Nej, tack. But more importantly, I think if life there really is easier because of social welfare and everything else, I'd expect the older people to not look as eroded as they do here. We'll see.

--Check out the rats in the subway. Are they huge and brawny, big as cats but a little icy and reserved? (Because it's becoming a cliche that they grow 'em taller in rich parts of Western/Northern Europe. Because they really do grow taller. And there's that Swedish cliche about the guys being tall and blond and built. So if the people grow bigger, do the rats? Are they well-nourished too?) Are they blond? Is there language very musical and heavy on the 'r' phoneme?

--Make more notes later. Bloggerate this so you don't lose it.


So that's my forsta list, in progress. More to come if I think of something and am not too lazy to put it up.

GLORP! (it's not the new beep, exactly; but I end my emails with various single-syllable such words, so I'm being colloquial here. But I'll beep anyway. BEEP!)


Wednesday, April 01, 2009


Oh, cod. Blogger, look what has become of you. Not only do you have "followers" on your template page, but you also have "monetize," as in "click here to monetize your blog." Must you escort us down that road???? Antyganoo...

I have something to say! -Jerri Blank, Strangers With Candy.

I'm sure that I am a supergenius ultraexpert at something, but that this something doesn't yet have a name or definition. And since I can't pin it down exactly, I think it may be completely undiscovered, and therefore in need of invention. I have a suspicion that it's not a single trait, but rather a complex, or to coin a word, a parallex. If it were a medical condition, you might call it a syndrome. One of these days I'm going to give it a name and educate people about it. It's good when you've educated people so much that they think they've heard of it on Oprah instead of from you. Or when they say, "Did I tell you that Fularka has Glammertybork's Artstasia?" when they forget that you INVENTED G.A.! So I'm going to define this set of traits, and maybe monetize it. Of course, the existence of the syndrome prompts one to ask...

Is this a parallex that is a positive mutation in human evolution? Is it a superior genetic trait?


(Yeah, I made an emoticon.) (I farted too.) (Not really, I just thought that was funny.)

You know, I don't like the word mutation in that context. It has such a bad connotation. We should think of positive genetic mutations as adaptations. Because it describes it better. I read about some study that came to the conclusion that experience can alter your genes--e.g., if you have years of musical training, your offspring may inherit a certain aptitude for music, apart from their exposure to it as infants. How's that? That experience causes your DNA to change? The article seemed to imply that was part of the study's conclusion; but I doubt it. Experience/environment can cause your gene expression to change, however, and maybe that's how things get passed on. Who knows?? I'm just flexing my Cassadega lobe here.

The point, and I don't really have one, being that perhaps this parallex is a superior genetic adaptation. We won't know the specifics of it until it's studied at length, however. First I need to name it; then people need to parse it out, describe and categorize it; finally scientists need to locate the specific genetic sequence responsible for it, and what other effects it has besides giving rise to the parallex. For example, do the genes that code for the parallex also leave one susceptible to the pleasures of pumpkin pie?? Maybe someone with one or more of the genes turned OFF is resistant to pumpkin pie. Of course, that would be silly now, wouldn't it? Because it would seem preferable in evolutionary terms to like pumpkin pie--it is calorie dense, and therefore it would be good to have in a famine. ("No bread? Well then let them eat pumpkin pie!") It is also sky high in beta carotene. It may have traces of calcium and protein. And the preservatives in canned pumpkin mean that it will always be around. AND pumpkin pie MIX is great straight-from-the-can. So clearly liking pumpkin pie is a superior genetic adaptation. But I think I'm getting ahead of myself here, because there's nothing at present to tie pumpkin pie susceptibility to my particular parallex. It may be indicative of a completely separate parallex, which is also a desirable genetic adaptation. Oh, so much to know, and only one me. Le sigh...