Wednesday, December 21, 2011

wisdom teeth

My fiancée is getting her lone wisdom tooth removed as I write this post, and I am holding vigil back here in Northern California, where we pay through the nose to never see frost, and you are BREAKING THAT DEAL THIS WEEK, NorCal, and I expect a sincere apology in the form of a non-freezing bike ride to the train in an hour. Or else.

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "wait, she's now his fiancée??! Isn't that gorgeous vixen of gloriousness way too smart to agree to marry him?" Or, "isn't she a little too hot to be marrying Chris Perry?" Or, "wait, is the entire point of this post to write the word fiancée as many times as possible and brag about snagging the most absolutely wonderful person in the entire universe?"

And while the answer to all of those questions is a resounding yes, fiancée fiancée fiancée fiancée, you're actually probably all wondering how she got away with having only one wisdom tooth. I've been pondering that myself for the past month, and have spent that time improving my tongue biting techniques to stop myself from interrupting her and yelling out HALT WITH YOUR ONE WISDOM TOOTH TALE! and regaling her of tales of the removal of my three wisdom teeth.

But I wouldn't do that sort of thing,1 because I wouldn't do anything to jeopardize the relationship status we just posted on Facebook hours ago, which has been liked by, as of this writing, 72 people on my wall, and 86 people on her wall. But of course, I'm not counting that sort of thing, because I would never compete with my beautiful bride to be, even if, technically, it was she who inserted an element of competition into the liking.

I will, however, just make brief mention, and this is neither here nor there, and I have no ulterior motives other than counting stats for kicks and giggles,2 and I am in no way trying to snatch victory in this non-competition, but I will just say that many of the likes on her wall technically originate from friends of mine, so I will just say that and concede defeat to the soon-to-be-wisdom-toothless brilliant and beautiful fiancée.

Fiancée fiancée fiancée fiancée.

That is all.

P.S. I love you. Good luck.

1. Actually, I did. And she really loves me, because she sat through my three-wisdom-tooth tale without punching me in the face once.
2. I was twenty eight before I was informed by my co-workers, while heartily laughing at my expense, that giggles is usually paired with another, slightly more harsh word.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

silicon valley startups

I work for a small start-up in Silicon "no, it isn't actually a valley so would you stupid tourists stop looking for one" Valley. The company recently updated its social media policy, which I was too lazy to actually read,1 so let's leave it nameless for now.

There are lots of great things about working for a startup.

Bragging that you work for a startup

In most parts of the country, if you tell someone you work for a startup, they will immediately assume you failed to get a job at any legitimate company, and treat you like the pariah you are. Which might be true, but here in Silicon "holy cow, leave it alone, we get it, we freaking get it, it's not a valley and there isn't any silicon, and there aren't hard boundaries, it's just a lousy name so please leave it alone before we beat you down with a keyboard" Valley, you're treated a little bit like royalty, minus the televised weddings, the taxpayer support, and the nazi costumes.

Meeting cool people

I don't want to brag or anything, but I walked by the founder of Netscape a few months ago, and he looked at me. And I recently said hi to one of the famous "super angels", and he ignored me like the slime I am. And this morning a gaggle of people from an unknown organization showed up in the reception area at 8:35, approximately three hours before anyone starts working here, and refused to tell me who they were here to see. So you get to meet all sorts of cool people.

Open office spaces

If your office is anything like mine, your monitor is visible from every single angle in the office. I especially love it when people silently sneak up and stare at what I'm doing, then make fun of me. This in no way makes me want to hurt you.

Working with amazing people

I've worked with some pretty great people in my day. There's the man with the alter-ego Becky, the man who wore the same uniform every day, the man who referred to himself in the third person including the title of uncle, the man who started a competing company while working with us, and the woman who obsessed about polygamy and quizzed me on it every day.2

Distributing unflattering pictures of your coworker in a compromising position with a dog, implying bestiality

While you could do this in major companies, only in a Silicon "of course it's not a bubble!" Valley startup can you do it without a major lawsuit. Incidentally, Tim, I still feel bad about that.

Replying to an email asking if anyone had seen the french press with a link to Le Monde.

I know I already bragged about this on Facebook, but seriously, the response was way too tepid, possibly because none of my non-coffee-drinking Mormon friends know what a french press is. But if you do, how is that not the funniest thing you have ever heard? I think I laughed for six hours straight. Yes, at my own joke. Which is why I'm repeating it here. Does that make me lame? Yes, it does.

1. I'm kidding Michelle, I totally read it! I promise! Now how about making my vacation balance un-negative? Please?
2. To be clear: I have no personal knowledge of this subject.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

getting in shape

A lot of people I know are trying to get in shape and look better. Well, I have a tried-and-true plan of accomplishing your life's dream of not looking like a skinny sissy boy.1

First of all, gain weight. Maybe put on fifteen pounds. Do this over the course of a year or two, all while thinking you are one of those people that "never gain weight".

Next, convince yourself you did this on purpose. Right? You tried to gain weight once. This was in high school, when, after failing to do so, you still convinced yourself you were large and walked around in "muscle" t-shirts with images of fish you colored yourself.2 This obviously means you gained weight ten years later on purpose.

Since you're already being successful gaining weight, continue to gain more weight. You've gotten pretty good at self-deception, so, performing what can only be referred to as a miracle, convince yourself that you are gaining muscle, because, aside from putting down three thousand calories a day, you avoid running like the plague, and occasionally go to the gym and lightly sweat as you bench thirty-five pounds.

Speaking of thirty-five pounds, gain that. Once you're at your peak, convince yourself that you are actually "in shape", and not "a rolly pork chop", and when your doctor tells you to lose weight, or your sister tries to set you up with a larger woman because "you're not that skinny yourself", be convinced they don't know what they're talking about.

Then go to grad school, and later, incur vast amounts of stress in your life by moving around the world a few times, and lose it all.3

Since I feel like I'm being a little too hypothetical, let me show you a before and after picture (both bearded, of course, as that seems to be the only time I take pictures of myself).

And that, my friends is how to accomplish your life's dream of...oh wait. You're still a sissy boy. Oh well.

1. Seriously. My life's dream. It wasn't until I saw a picture of my great-great grandfather that I realized the futility. What was he like? Tall and skinny. Just like all of us.
2. Fully one hundred percent autobiographical.
3. Which reminds me of the India diet my old roommate and good friend once went on. The India diet consists of living in India for a summer, and being sick the entire time.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

store hours

One of the major downsides of living in a major American city is the proximity to a preponderance of stores that are open for business at all hours of the evening. This is problematic, because it means that you are able to purchase things when you actually need them.

In order to avoid this, I spend most of my time in Sleep Town USA, AKA Redwood City, CA, where Costco, the only store within five miles of my house that is not a taco truck or an abandoned liquor store, closes at six on Saturdays. This makes sense because six o'clock is the time most people1 start thinking about maybe putting together a list or something of things they might need to buy on the one day during the week they can actually run an errand. Closing at six makes their life so much easier and better and does not encourage the spewing of inappropriate language when they realize they are going to have to eat sawdust again the following morning.

Closing at six has the side benefit of ensuring Costco is never open when the checkout lines are less than six miles long.2

Another great benefit to living in Redwood City is trying to find an open gas station at night. That's right, gas stations close here people. Gas stations. Gas freaking stations. The one remaining bastion of a twenty-four hour capitalist state. You close the gas stations, and the terrorists win. And yet, I ask you to find a way to fill up your running-on-fumes car at 11:30 PM anywhere near my house.3 Good luck. Good freaking luck.

1. And by most people, I mean myself.
2. Costco membership: $55. Value of your time waiting for the thirty chumps in front of you to meander through their purchase: $412.
3. I passed by three closed stations before finally finding a charitable Chevron still open on the border of Menlo Park. Bless you Menlo Park. Bless you for being freaking red-blooded sleep-deprived Americans.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

how to appropriately respond when someone sends you a link to something verifiably hilarious you have seen before

The wrong way

Oh man, that is hilarious. I can really enjoy this with you and not show you what a weenie I am by telling you how far ahead of the times I am.

The right way

Oh, I saw that four months ago and laughed a lot more then when it was original and sent to me by someone cool, instead of now when someone as dorky as you is trying to recycle old material that you think is funny but is actually really old and lame and has been the subject of at least five memes that I can tell you about because I starred in the videos that I'm going to make you watch right now and did you see my pictures from my latest scuba trip in Bolivia? And there are sub-memes and sub-sub-memes, and there's even a sub-reddit dedicated to the third word of the second sentence of the banner ad on that site. And did you hear about that concert I went to at that venue you've never heard of with that band who formed three days ago and wears plaid and big glasses? No wait, you haven't, because you are boring and you haven't been to a concert since Billy Joel in the nineties1 and the last time you heard of something before me was in early nineteen eighty-two before I was born because I am also younger than you and wait I have Vespa and I wear plaid too and my gym is better than yours because it manages a non-Starbucks coffee shop that I go to every morning and pay with my smart phone for espressos whose beans were hand-picked by Incan llamas working in sustainable conditions on reclaimed missile-silo hilltops in Cuba.

Also, you smell like a dead squirrel.

1. One of the more depressing moments of my recent career came three weeks ago, when a co-worker, as part of some research she was conducting, came and asked me about my experience going to concerts. After a very long pause, I was able to recall going to a concert in London last year, which was very very very lucky for myself, or I would have had to confess attending Billy Joel in 1999, I think? I would have lost all respect in her eyes at that point. As it was, I am so far removed from normal that her time was wasted on me, as I can provide you zero valuable insights about the human population.