Monthly Archives: July 2013

German, American community yard sale fun and by fun I mean misery

Dagmar called me Friday and asked, “Do you want to sell your golf clubs?”

“My golf clubs are a collection of failed titanium dreams and but they are something I love. Don’t you dare touch them, they are sacred to me,” I replied in a panic.

She asked this question because she was cleaning out the house in order to participate in a community yard-sale.  This yard sale is in Germany, on the economy, and she’s doing it because she hates weekends.

yard saleIf you’re unfamiliar with Germany let me lay it out for you. Its got rain, cold, snow, cold, more rain, occasional hail, sleet, rain and cold. Basically, the weather in Germany is attempting to destroy your soul for 10 months of the year. So, when there is sunshine and warm weather I want to be on the beach soaking up sunlight and drinking beer.

For the love of all things sane, I don’t want spend those precious days selling crap at a yard sale.

Dagmar disagrees because she’s insane.

She heard about the yard sale during her furlough day from a mutual friend who I plan to kill soon for that indiscretion. I knew from the moment she called me with the “suggestion” about the yard sale that I was “husband fucked” and that I was indeed going to have to do it.  Any plans I had otherwise for the weekend were destroyed the minute our mutual friend said to my wife, “You know they’re having a community yard sale this weekend?”

We’ve only had one other yard sale in our lives together and that was in the states in the late ’90s. During the brief time I was left alone during that yard sale a person asked me if I was willing to sell something for $5. Dagmar had marked it as $10. I told the man, “Dude if you don’t buy that I’m literally going to throw it away.” Never tell a yard-sale person this because, yeah I ended up giving it to him for free. Don’t tell Dagmar.

Fast forward to last Saturday. I resigned myself to my fate, what else can you do? She trolled the house for salable crap we owned and Saturday morning at the ungodly hour of 6:30 am, I loaded up the car and off we went into whack job land because German community yard sales are insane.

When we arrived we were accosted by several people of questionable sanity/nationality asking us in broken English, “Do you have gold, do you have computer, do you have shoes?”

This was moments after we arrived and we were just getting out of the car. I hadn’t even had coffee yet. I was confused and annoyed at the same time, I was confannoyed, which is something I just now made up!

These people I was later told are “resellers.” And fuck them, they’re annoying.

The next surprise, at the lovely hour of 7 a.m. on a Saturday morning, was that the organizers were completely baffled by the fact that a parking lot next to a hotel had mysteriously been filled with cars, during the night! I should point out that this community yard sale was organized by Americans on a part of an American installation in Germany open to everyone. Anyone can, and apparently does, drive and park in the area. So despite the best efforts of seven parking cones, the “plan for the setting up of tables” had been thwarted.

If you haven’t already gathered, Germans don’t just chuck their used shit on their driveway and call it a yard sale. No they do it as a community, which makes sense if you think about it. More sellers mean more buyers, or something. I’ve never really thought about yard sales but that’s the basic idea, I think.

But a yard sale of that scale has to be organized, I mean fuck, we’re in Germany after all. They’d organize chaos if they could and I think just have.

So entering into the yard sale area we approach the American organizer and discover he’s an idiot. Maybe idiot is too strong a word. He has the lot planned out, with space for all the participants but the cars have really fucked his plan. This is when I learn that yard sale people are really, really picky about their spots. See you had to sign up for a spot at this yard sale. For the low cost of $20 you get a spot and a table, not a bad deal. Only some people, as I said, are really fucking picky about their spots.

“I paid for these two spots, right near the entrance!” and “I paid for this spot because …” I tried to zone these insane yard sale monsters out.

English: A Stack of 1$ Bills with 100 on the o...

English: A Stack of 1$ Bills with 100 on the outside (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Look Mr. Yard Sale manager, I paid for this spot and could give a shit less. Just shove me in somewhere so I can unload my filthy bunch of crap and make a step toward ending this day,” I told him. With a sympathetic sigh he shoved us in a corner and went back to dealing with the monsters.

Once the crap was unloaded and set up on our rented table Dagmar, thankfully not me, dealt with a crowd. I’d already had enough.

This particular yard sale attracted early shoppers that want shit for free, as in “Can I have this for free?” If I had my druthers, I would have weighed the “pain in the ass of having to cart that item unsold back to my house,” against the fact that, “I hated being up and out of the house at 7 a.m. on a Saturday,” against the fact that we “hadn’t used this particular piece of shit in years,” and concluded that if I just gave it all away I could be home in approximately 45 minutes.

Dagmar, not so much.

As the day progressed I was given attitude-adjustment medication in the form of beer. She knows me so well.

I also made an important discovery about my bride — she was a fucking third-world merchant in a previous life.

“Have a look at these purses ma’am,” she squawked at a passerby as I sunk into my folding chair and tried to hide. The purse she was hawking was hideous. I think someone who grew up in El Paso spent a little too much time at the markets in Juarez, is all I mean.

As the day wore painfully on, the crowd thinned and I broke out the kindle. I was reading something deep that, for me at least, took a bit of concentration. I had to read a sentence, think it through and then move on. Dagmar had nothing to read. Do you see where this is going? Yeah it was all: Read the sentence, Dagmar asks a mundane question, read the same sentence again, Dagmar asks another mundane question, read the same sentence again … you get the point.

All said she made $380 bucks. I would have gladly paid $380 to not have to make $380 bucks, but she’s awfully proud of the $380 bucks and I guess that’s what matters at the end of the day.

Furlough fun day! A blog post with 20 percent fewer jokes

Hi and welcome to the first installment of Furlough Fun Day!*

I guess I could have called it Furlough Monday but it doesn’t have the same ring to it. Come to think of it, federal employees who are furloughed on Fridays have all the good names.  Furlough Friday people get all the breaks.

Anyway, this is the first in a series of what I hope is only one blog written on my furlough day.

If you haven’t been following along with the news let me bring you up to speed.

FurloughDepartment of Defense employees are being forced to take a day off every week, which is awesome. We are also being forced to take this day off with no pay, which is not awesome. All told it equals a 20 percent pay cut.

As a result, this blog is going to be 20 percent less funny. (Math jokes are tough to write. That was the best I could do.)

I think technically during the furlough day, I’m not legally employed by the government. I can’t get another job during that day, but I’m not “technically” not a federal employee on furlough day either. That fact opens a lot of creative windows actually.

*Cough* Is it just me or does Gen. Dempsey look just a little bit like Gollum from

I'm just saying if you were viewing a line up could you tell who stole the elf bread?

I’m just saying if you were viewing a line up could you tell who stole the elf bread?

Lord of the Rings?

There. I’ve committed an act of civil disobedience and I feel awful.  Gen. Dempsey is a great man and a great leader.  I suck at civil disobedience.

Anyway, it would have been great if Dagmar and I had the same furlough day off but we don’t. She has Fridays off and I have, as you know, Mondays off. At first, the lizard part of my brain thought, HA! This is awesome, PORN PARTY on my day off. But after some rethinking, it kind of sucks because three day weekends together would rock harder than even the best porn party. Actually porn party sounds really, really pathetic.

But, as I said, we don’t have the same day off. This fact highlights a basic difference between us. She spent her day off in productive productivity and I spent my first day off curled up on in a ball of “damaged-dignity-hangover-smell” on the couch. That’s why I didn’t write this last Monday.  Between dry heaving into the toilet, crying and fiendish masterba … well I was really hung-over.

I did wash the windows though. She told me that was my chore and by-god I did it. By contrast she did five loads of laundry, the dishes, dusted the upstairs, mopped upstairs, ironed four of my shirts, extensively cleaned the cat litter box (extra hard because I had neglected it), changed the bed linen, called her daughter and purged the bar of old and no longer drinkable spirits.

So I’m feeling pretty good about my accomplishment.

Anyway I think the only thing from this point forward is to have a contest between Dagmar and I. Call it: Who used their unpaid day off the wisest. I’ve taken the liberty of drawing up a quick score sheet for everyone reading so they can keep track of who is winning.

Category Todd Dagmar
Hours of Porn Viewed 2 0
Windows washed All of them 0
Windows rewashed because of the shitty job done the first time 0 All of them
Episodes of Family Guy viewed 7 0
Episodes of Family Guy not viewed because of napping 3 0
Naps 3 0
Legs shaved 0 2
Episodes of the Today show about summer flip flop fashion   viewed 0 1
Number of dry heaves in the toilet 8 0
Crying silently 4 0
Video Games played 3 0
Number of balls scratched 2 0
Poops 3 1
Floors mopped 0 5
Beds made 1 1
Beds changed 0 1
Shirts ironed 0 4
Cat poop cleaned 0 All of them
Retarded decisions 7 0
Total 4,659 14

So clearly, as you can see (math doesn’t lie friends) I’m winning the furlough fun day competition.

*I’m really, really not smart enough to comment on the politics of furloughs. I’m not. I know my wife and I can weather it and be OK. I know a lot of my friends can, and will. But I also know that a lot of my friends and co-workers out there are seriously affected by this and I hope they don’t take offense to what I just wrote. Furlough and sequestration is, at the end of the day, not very funny at all. To a lot of folks, a 20 percent pay cut is no laughing matter. At the end of the day, it isn’t to us either. If I’ve offended anyone, I’m sorry.

Hipsters; it’s okay to choke your chicken. Yeah, this is about chickens.

There’s this thing going around on the internet right now about hipsters and backyard farming.  I think it started on Slate about hipsters abandoning chickens they own and that’s somehow bad.

I don’t know why that’s bad. I get why that’s funny, but I don’t get why that’s bad.

Hipster gets a chicken to be a hipster, hipster realizes chickens are fucking retarded and filthy, and abandons them. Hilarity!

The period of sheer hell that the hipster had to endure before concluding that chickens are a pain in the ass amuses me to no end.  Sure, chickens are living, breathing creatures, but brothers and sisters, chickens are idiots.

So however you hipsters planned to do it with your chickens — whether you raised them in the back yard or kept them in your house — I thank you. Please keep doing it.

I hate this blog.  I hate the guy that writes it, I everything in it and I hate you.  I hate you for reading this.

I hate this blog. I hate the guy who writes it and I hate you because I’m a fucking chicken. (Photo credit: Some chicken website.)

Until the sun blows up and engulfs our dear earth, there will be chickens. They’re so completely and utterly stupid we can almost literally breed them without their help. Think about that for a moment. There’s a species out there that we bred into the “never going away” category of existence. You’ve heard of endangered species right? These fuckers are the earth’s guaranteed-to-live species. If there is a category for “kill on site” on the endangered species list (it’s near the bottom, I’m sure), chickens and North American deer have top billing.

Here’s a humorous and spot-on article that deals with, in part, what a bat-fucking retarded species the chicken actually is (read number four).

Go read it. Really now, I’ll wait.

If you’re now joining us after having read both articles, welcome back. I have no idea what the hell I was talking about before you left.  Scanning up the page a bit it seems I was pissed, or happy, about hipsters adopting and then abandoning chickens.

Yep, that’s it. I see it right up there. Hipsters adopt and abandon chickens, ha ha!

Well it is funny isn’t it? Actually the first story has much more than that in it. Backyard farming sounds about as smart as backyard stockcar racing to me. Listen hipsters: The urban American backyard has a clearly defined purpose in our modern society — to piss off whoever has to mow it on Saturday. Sure you can use it for you kiddie pools, your picnics or other fun stuff, but its main purpose it to destroy leisure time. It’s far too small for farming.

I don't know what you assholes playing mine craft are doing with chicken but stop it.  This is the autofill you get if you type "will chickens ..." into Google.  You people are freaks.

This is the autofill you get if you type “will chickens …,” into Google. I don’t know what you assholes playing Minecraft are doing with chickens,  but stop it. You people are freaks.

But let’s get back to the topic.

Now I concede that, yes, you can in a typical urban backyard raise chickens. I know, I’ve seen it done. I’d wager most of the people reading this have. There might even be a hipster right now reading this and thinking, “WTF dude, I’m doing it just fine.”

That’s because you’re a smart hipster. You’re likely even smarter than me. Stop congratulating yourself it’s not that hard. You’re smart because of one, two or both things. You either don’t have a rooster, you had a rooster and knew what to do with it or possibly both.

Now roosters, also called cocks (and yes, you’re welcome, I did intentionally skip a lot of dick jokes in that last paragraph), are truly fucking vicious birds. They hate, absolutely hate, other roosters. That’s why we have cock fights for the love of God.

See, I couldn’t avoid that cock joke. Sorry.

I spent a lot of spoiled-brat summers on my grandparents farm in upstate New York and I can tell you, with no authority whatsoever, that the man who wrote Deliverance was inspired by a chicken coop. It’s the same exact deal with the person who envisioned the prisoner scene from The Deer Hunter — totally inspired by a chicken coop. Both of these writers clearly knew chicken coops. That’s the only disorganized part of the farm. It’s fucking complete chaos in there.

Which, a million years later, brings us to the point of this blog.  In order to have a chicken that lays eggs you do not need a cock.  However, to have a chicken that lays eggs that eventually become more chickens and roosters, you definitely need a cock.

So hipsters everywhere — stop adopting chickens and abandoning them unless you know what the fuck you’re doing. Or don’t.

Fuck chickens, they’re going to outlive us.

Two things that piss me off: “I’m blessed” and bumper stickers.

This happened to me today with a total stranger.

Me: Hi, how are you?

Stranger: I’m blessed, thank you.

Ever have that shit happen to you? You’re on the way to work, you stop for a quick cup of coffee and you say mindlessly to some stranger, “How are you,” and they fuck up your day with this moronic bullshit?

That’s not even a real answer to the question. Your day is either good, bad or in between — those are the fucking answers you’re allowed to give.

“How is your day” isn’t a question that invites a response of, “I love baby Jesus.” You’re phishing and hoping the person you say it to will magically find Jesus afterward.

Here’s a fact, you’re a total twat for saying that.

Seriously, if you’re currently answering the aforementioned question with, “I’m blessed,” is the verbal equivalent of spam. Its unsolicited bullshit put into my head in an effort to trick me into doing something you want.

You’re doing this because you’re a twat.

I’m going to start wasting the time and energy of every one of you twats by asking a shit ton of questions after you give that response.

Me: Hi, how are you?

Stranger: I’m blessed!

You forgot, "and a twat."

You forgot, “and a twat.”

Me: You’re what?

Stranger: Blessed.

Me: What’s that mean?

Stranger: You know, by the Lord.

Me: The who? What are you talking about?

Stranger: Our lord and savior, Jesus Christ.

Me: Look you don’t have to swear at me. What lord and savior? I thought we had a president?

Stranger: Jesus Christ!

Me: Stop swearing at me! Who is our lord and savior?

And so forth.

Right back at you bible thumpers. You want to say stupid shit to a question that every sane person answers with, “I’m good, how are you,” then I’m going to find out exactly what you mean. We can Who’s-On-First that shit until the apocalypse, fuckheads.

Jesus Christ, you people piss me off.

You know what else pisses me off? Bumper stickers, that’s what.  Not all of them. That would be stupid. The stick family on your back window, that’s cool. The stick family on your back window being chased by a chain-saw wielding maniac? Great, I love it. Do you break for yard sales? Awesome!

What I’m talking about are political bumper stickers in general and election bumper stickers, before and after an election, specifically.

So Jesus and George Washington, after killing all the French people, got together and wrote the constitution, and that's why we have Christmas boys and girls.  America!

So Jesus and George Washington, after killing all the French people, got together and wrote the constitution, and that’s why we have Christmas boys and girls. America!

If your bumper sticker says that you support giving aborted fetuses handguns because Jesus said it was OK when he wrote the constitution while high on legal marijuana, you’re an idiot. But you’re a forgivable idiot and at least there’s a remote chance you convinced someone to read up on the merits or pitfalls of arming aborted babies. I mean it’s their constitutional right — the bible says so.

This is one of those areas where I don’t care which side of the political spectrum you favor. Putting a political statement on the bumper of your car just makes you look like a drooling idiot. It’s the same, almost, as the “I’m blessed” crowd.

Look fuckheads: The messages on your bumper should be reserved for snark and/or telling us what great fucking crotch fruit you’ve produced. (Even then I think it’s slightly retarded but not nearly as retarded and someone affixing one as it relates to an election.)

I’m political, very political in fact. I’ve donated money to candidates before. I’ve even received bumper stickers for that money. Did I put them on my bumper to show the world my “support?” Fuck no, because no “undecided” voter in the history of democracy has ever, ever saw one and said, “Well that’s it, I’m voting for that guy because it’s on that dude’s bumper.”

And if I’m wrong with the above assumption and some moron did vote for the candidate of my choice because of my bumper sticker, well, that person is a fucking moron and shouldn’t be allowed to vote in the first place.  I’d love to read the exit poll quote with that mouth breather.

Pollster: And why did you vote for that candidate?

Moron: Ummm, because the bumper sticker told me too?

So — at best — putting one on your car is fucking pointless, and at worst it encourages the uninformed to vote.  You’re simply not fucking helping.

Finally let’s move on to the retards who leave the stickers on after the election is over, because Googling how to remove a bumper sticker is too hard.

I can kind of see how, if you picked the winner, you’d be tempted to leave it on to gloat, but really after like six months aren’t you just advertising to the world that you once, way back when, made the same decision the majority of the people did? Really, you’re proud of that? Way to follow the herd.

And those that support the losers? Don’t get me started.

There’s a car at my work with a bumper sticker that says “Romney 2012, Makers vs. Takers.” This is hysterical to me because, I promise you, the driver of the car is a federal employee.

But I digress.

Here’s a constant reminder of the day the members of my democratic country disagreed with me. Right here, on my car! For fuck sake stop and remove that reminder of your failure. I’d be equally pissed if Obama lost the 2012 election and I saw a bumper sticker supporting him today.  You need to get rid of that shit, it’s a mobile billboard shouting, “I backed the wrong horse!”

Anyway, bless you all! Maybe I need a “Romney blesses you all, 2012,” sticker.