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Las Vegas, Nevada, United States
"No, really!"

My Favorite Bit of Paper Cup Philosophy

The Way I See It #76

The irony of commitment is that it's deeply liberating - in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around as rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Surrealistic Sunday ~ The Field Trip, Chapter 3

Someone who knows me very well and cheers for me and who watches me write (both the physical process and the end product) asked, "You're writing about something difficult or painful, aren't you?" I wanted to know why he asked that. "Answer the question and then I'll tell you." I admitted I was working on a couple of pieces that were difficult and that had stirred up some ghostly activity in the soul. I asked how he knew that. "You're flogging The Field Trip and writing about the home dudes and I saw you draft your next about the desert, but your face says that's not where you really are 100%." Oh. Exposed. It is true that I have to leaven the emotionally troubling posts with some donkey laughs. I am driven to tell both kinds of stories. But I can't write all the angst-filled chronicles in a linear manner. One could bleed to death.

This will be the final chapter telling about the field trip to the wrong place. I've already finished touring the reader through the establishment. Now I want to share my fascination with one of my purchases. Yes, I do think this is funny, fascinating and wrong.

I spent an amount of money it takes me seven minutes to earn on a tiny box of peppermint artifically flavored (with attitude) Cat Butt Gum. I am not sure I knew that flavors or gum have attitude at all, but OK, I'm a quick learner. The box contains 8 miniscule pieces of gum with "kiss my ass" attitude. All right. Gum and flavor not only with attitude, but with "kiss my ass" attitude. I like to think I am a modest, amateur wordsmith, but I can't come up with a way to describe what I think I could taste and then think, "Oh - definitely - the message in that bite was 'kiss my ass'." And if what I tasted was peppermint, I assure you, I'd only think "peppermint". This marriage of kiss my ass attitude to peppermint flavor is difficult for me to comprehend. But the mysteries on the front of the tiny box don't hold a candle to the puzzlements on the back.

Made in Canada for a company located in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, the gum's box was designed by Modern Dog Design Co. OK, all well and good. I understand a bit about commerce and advertising. But it's about the text on the back of the box! It makes me laugh out loud every time I read it, and at the very bottom of the box, in typeface so tiny I can barely see it with or without trifocals, is this: "P.S. Copy by Jun, he's a bitch." WTF?

7 Helpful Occasions to Chew This Gum

1. When you suddenly need to change your mood. I know chewing gum always helps me to change mine! What???

2. When somebody yell at you and you don't want to listen. Earplugs or leaving the room might be as effective, but OK.

3. If you are lack of attitude. Attitude is not what I lack, but I don't think the gum would give me any.

4. When you need to refuse. Um, wouldn't you just say no?

5. When you want to be picky. I'm picky without the gum.

6. When you want to be selfish. I'm not sure I ever want to be selfish and I don't think the gum would help me to be that way.

7. When you definitely want to say "kiss my ass". I think I'd just say it if I felt so inclined.

*Chew more than one if you need extra attitude. No, it's already been decided. I'm not chewing any.

In my ears right now: I love it. I have always loved it.

Something that charmed me: Boris charmed me. "Boris Putznik, The Human Contortionist" it says on the back of the card I bought at the Bonanza. I Googled "Boris Putznik" and came up with nothing. Do you suppose Boris is not real? Or is Boris Putznik such a common name, Google can't sort out one from the other? The reason Boris charms me: there he is, doing what he does, and that expression on his face, to me, says "having a great day at the office!"

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone. I love a holiday/celebration that celebrates love! And, like the Dixie Chicks, I believe in love . .


  1. The gum may have been made in Canada, but I think the copy was translated badly from Chinese. Just a thought. Cat butt gum, indeed!

  2. I'll save you a stick, Badger. It was a grand day, wasn't it? LOVE them. Love you. It's almost Valentine's Day! Love is . . . love.I believe in love.If ONLY I could sing it like Natalie Maines!

  3. This post brought so many happy, yet confused smiles to my face. Thank you so much. You have presented something I never would have known existed. How could I ever have gone on in life without this knowledge? It staggers the mind.

  4. Oh hooray! Another hilarious post. What can one say? Badger is right. It's definitely the same Asian writer who tries to instruct me in how to put furniture together. And Boris misunderstood where you're supposed to put the gum while you chew it. "When you need to refuse" - In this case, 'refuse' is the 'garbage' meaning of the word. So China Joe thinks the gum is a good laxative.

    How many packs did you buy?

    On this lovely Heart day, I'm sending you my most sincere appreciative Red-Heart-Shaped-Gratitude-For-Understanding-And-Laughs one.

    (hope your party went well)

  5. Old movie time again, Les.

    Watch any old movie about juvenile deliquents made before, say, 1964, when they were superseded by counterculture types, and noticed the "bad girls" but, oddly enough, never the the bad boys, always seem to be chewing gum, often opening up their mouths very wide as they do so.

    Another way around the censor. I'll say no more.

  6. @ GJ ~ It's just so stupidly wrong and it just pulls me. Once these fascinations are noticed, then I want to know all about them. I'm not so sure what I think that says about me, other than I'm blessed with a good, curious mind. Hmmm . . . that just made me think of my Granny. She also wanted to know everything about everything, even things that didn't please her. She just needed to know things. I hope I didn't take your innocence away, GJ!

  7. @ Kass-erole ~ I'm glad I made you laugh. It's good to laugh. It's good for your soul. Laughing and a love holiday on the same weekend is about more than my poor old heart and soul can stand at one time.

    I just bought the one tiny pack of gum. It's expensive (relatively) and I don't intend to actually chew it, but I had to own it.

    You're right! We see that same kind of ALMOST correct use of English in frustrating instructions that also sometimes have errors in the drawings, too.

    It was a lovely dinner, beginning and ending with hugs, lots of laughs, and so many "this is so nice" statements. It doesn't get much better than that.

  8. @ Kirk ~ I admire how you think "movie". I'm not nearly as knowledgable about them as you are. But you're RIGHT, Kirk! The harlots are always chomping away in a slightly unsavory way, aren't they? And - as you say - NOT the home dudes. I think you're right. There is an underlying deep meaning to that.

  9. I like how Boris kept his socks on - what a man!

    I think I'm up for chewing some butt this week! Cat butt of course. Having a particularly non-linear time of it myself lately but it does make for a more interesting read. You made me smile wider than a big thing seen with tiny eyes.

  10. @ Rachel (or anyone) ~ What's with that belt thing he wears around his middle? I'm struggling with that.

    Rachel, that is a charming phrase I've never heard before: "You made me smile wider than a big thing seen with tiny eyes."

  11. You've never heard it before 'cause I made it up right there! :) You can use it to your heart's content though.

  12. My word verification was "Nyleadd" - like "Illiad" but not...a nearly Illiad...an almost epic...like an "Odyssey"...but less odd...or not..

  13. @ Sister Rachel ~ Woke up in the middle of the night to use the toilet, and I'm guffawing. I bow at the altar, Rachel! That is a good turn of phrase, indeed.

    The Ilead/Odyssey reference is also stunning! Life is epic, and DAMNED odd!So is the Bonanza and its wares that draw me to the doors.