Thursday, January 18, 2018


I am so excited about this new film coming out! I just know I'll love it as much as The First Appearance of the Third Avenger and The Fifth Time We Saw Avengers Four Through Twelve.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Beloved Reader,

Permit me to take the opportunity this joyous season to post one of my all-time favorite songs, an iconic holiday classic by songwriter Leonard Cohen. I hear it frequently around this time of year -- to the point where some people might get tired of it -- but somehow the uplifting melody and spiritual lyrics still give me chills.

At this wondrous time, may your holidays match your hopes: surrounded by loved ones in a comfortable home, full of good health and happiness and inspirational songs like this.

RomanHans


Macadamia

Well I heard there is a nut you take
over all the others when you bake
If you hate walnuts, really, I can't shame ya.
But there's a nut I always buy
it's from a land they call Hawaii
Don't underestimate the plucky macadamia.

Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia

When I make fruitcake it's what I choose
Don't want no fucking lame cashews
Don't pull this shit like they are all the same, ya.
Because most are crunchy and taste like cheese
but just one is round and comes from trees
Behold the one, the only macadamia.

Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia

If a can of mixed nuts you should ope,
what will be your fondest hope?
Say peanuts or Brazil nuts and I'll maim ya.
Because peanuts look like human toes
and Brazil nuts like alien embryos
not like the unspoilt, buttery macadamia.

Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia

"Chestnuts" sound like Playboy fans
and almonds look like they have glands.
If they both creep you out, then I don't blame ya.
Pine nuts could pass for doggy ticks
and pecans resemble mummy lips
so the only safe one left is macadamia.

Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia
Macadamia

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

After seventeen years in Brooklyn, enough was enough. The city is a perpetual Peter Pan and I decided it was time to grow up. Of course I'm fine with having fun, but at some point we need to show a little responsibility. We don't need to buy a house, or get married, or have a kid, but we could at least buy a theater ticket, or go to the opera, or plan an Ikea run more than three minutes in advance.

I'd make suggestions to friends and get vague answers that, with a bit of thought, always translated to the same thing: "I will definitely go!" followed by "unless I meet a new guy or get drunk or just don't feel like getting out of bed."

Briana didn't recognize the tautology: she met so many pitiful, immature men that she'd try to forget them by going out and getting drunk, where she'd meet more pitiful, immature men. Charlotte gave up men in favor of friends and dogs. Emma got so sick of hipster-types that she started hanging around Mafia bars. I had to agree that these guys showed some maturity, even walking her home late at night, but when I inevitably put my foot in my mouth I don't want it stuffed there permanently.

It's the trademark of a Brooklyn party that somebody ends up crying in the bathroom. Always. The first time I noticed it I desperately wanted to help. "It'll work out!" I yelled through the door, followed by random stabs at advice. "We'll sign you up for community college! We'll find you a better roommate! We'll go to a bar on Wall Street and find you a man who's employed!"

Tiffany, my neighbor, walked up to me and shook her head. "Dude," she said, "women in Brooklyn don't need logic. We need sympathy."

After that I adjusted my behavior. Every time I saw or heard a woman crying, I'd ignore the impulse to identify the problem, concisely summarize it, and offer to facilitate. Instead I'd just sigh and loudly say, "Men are such bastards." Nobody got any better but people thought I was nice, which is pretty much what I'm aiming for.

I was single too, so of course I had to practice what I preached. I was just shocked when it actually seemed to work. I found a spectacular man, and, though I'd never say the words, I seemed to have done a "creative visualization." While I hadn't sat cross-legged on the carpet picturing myself living in Germany, I'd been thinking about moving there, and seemingly out of nowhere a man appeared who said, "Good idea. Can you pack up and leave right now?"

Maybe, I replied.

We had just two weeks before he had to return to Germany, so we spent every night together. I was mesmerized by the cultural differences. Here's what happens when you ask a Brooklynite out for cappuccino. "YES!" they'll text. "Maybe around 1?" Then at 3: "I fell asleep! Have to walk the dog now. Maybe around 4:30?" Then at 5: "My piercing got infected but maybe we could have a cappuccino while we walk to the clinic?"

I like cappuccinos. I don't like being known at the local coffeehouse as "The guy who gets his morning coffee after dark."

Ask a German man to join you for a cappuccino and you'll get this reply. "Yes," he'll say. "That sounds great. I will drive my car, and will stop in front of your apartment at 11:14. At 11:12 you will comb your hair and then wait by the front door."

The time flew by as I experienced exactly what I'd been looking for. Before Rolf left, I agreed to fly over and spend the next month in one of his friends' empty apartments in Berlin. There, I fell in love with the city, and discovered the inhabitants were ... adults. Rolf's friends had attributes that vanished from Brooklyn with the stegosaurus: they held down jobs, made plans for the future, and actually followed through on promises. One guy offered to take me on an architecture tour in his classic Alfa convertible. I happily accepted, but when the day came I was running behind. I got there two minutes late and found the guy on the phone asking Rolf whether or not I'd recently died.

I enjoyed the month so much I signed up for a three-month extension. Rolf and I became inseparable. There's an old saying that Germans will never tell you they like you, but you know they do because they are there.. Rolf never talked a lot about the future, but I knew he wanted to be there. One day he spent hours furiously typing at the computer, and late that night he gave me a printout. "This is your schedule," he announced.

It was a marvel, with odd color-coded hieroglyphics on every page meaning I'd meet a friend or go to a museum or drive with him up into the Alps. I felt a flush of admiration intermingling with those first twinges of love. It was perfect: as long as there's a competent leader, I'm happier following along and admiring the scenery than being in front and listening to the complaints.

Then I glanced at the top. "This is really, really wonderful," I said, "but shouldn't we get through 2018 first?"

Though I had the Berlin apartment, I started spending more time at Rolf's place just outside the city. One night he said his niece would be over the next day from 2:15 to 3:45. Anyone who knows Germany knows this is how it works: visits have a start and end time, and it's rude to be even two minutes late. In Brooklyn if you have a party starting at 8, you can roll around your living room wearing dirty diapers until 9:25. In Germany, your doorbell will start ringing at 7:59, and by 8:03 somebody will be checking names off of a list.

I was excited at the idea of meeting Rolf's family, but the start and end times seemed odd. I pressed Rolf for details. "She is driving from Frankfurt to Hamburg," he said. "It is a long drive. She will be passing by on the autobahn, and she will be tired. She will stop by here to wash her face, use the toilet, and eat a snack before returning to the road."

Again I was struck by the difference between Germany and Brooklyn, though this time Germany came up short. This sounded less like a family visit than a NASCAR pit stop. Brooklyners would be, I don't know, maybe happy? At least nobody would say, "She must use the toilet and drink some coffee or she will fall asleep in her car and die."

His niece's plans changed so she didn't stop by, which disappointed me. Not that I wanted to meet her -- no, I wanted to witness her exiting the toilet so I could cross off another entry on the checklist. Then Rolf and I could walk her to her car and check her tire pressure before she drove off.

We went to a wedding last month along with a carload of his friends. I was staring out the window at the Bavarian countryside and thinking the random, stupid thoughts Americans think on their way to these joyous events. Isn't it romantic? Will the food be good? Will both of the grooms be hot? Then my attention returned to the conversation inside the car. "I hope they sign the paperwork to divide their assets in case one of them dies," Rolf said.

"That paperwork is vitally important," one friend replied.

"So many people neglect to complete it and they regret it later on," added another voice of wisdom.

This was definitely not the chatter you'd get from a carload of Brooklynites, and it struck me as sad. Suddenly I realized something: I'd found the logic I'd wanted, but it highlighted what was missing. Was there no romance in Germany? Was it possible that Germans were too cold?

I got my answer a few days later when Rolf proposed to me. He got down on one knee and with his eyes full of tears he told me how much I meant to him, how much he loved me, and how he wanted to be with me for the rest of his life. I didn't pause for even a second. I didn't need to analyze what an unbelievable turn my life had taken, in a new city, in a new country, with an unbelievable new man. Of course I answered yes.

I've always joked before that a millisecond after a gay man accepts his boyfriend's proposal, both partners scream, "I'M DESIGNING THE RINGS!" and sprint off to a jewelry store. In this case, we Googled "wedding rings" and found a design for a silver band with your partner's fingerprint etched in it. We had them made and kept them in a box that Rolf brought out to show visitors.

I was exiting the toilet during an Advent party when I was greeted by a jewelry admirer. "Those rings are amazing," he said. "Such a wonderful idea!"

"I know!" I gushed. "So personal. So romantic. Marriage is all about the connection, and the fingerprint is a sign that of a uniquely personal bond."

He shot me a confused look. "Oh," he said. "Okay. Rolf just said they'd make it easy to identify the bodies in case one of you died."

Thursday, November 16, 2017

I have one weird item on my bucket list. I know everybody else has the usual clich├ęs: they want to jump out of airplanes, sing on TV, or have a shirtless Alec Baldwin knock on their door holding pizza. My dream is a little more unique, and as far as I can tell I'll be the first person in history to actually do it.

I want to kick the living shit out of a goose.

Now, I'm not a thoughtless asshole. I don't mean just ANY goose. I'm sure there are some really nice geese out there somewhere, though I'm having a hard time picturing them. I can't exactly picture a goose helping a disabled chicken across the road. I don't see them donating their bird seed to less fortunate creatures. And there's a reason you have to kill geese to get their down: they don't hold their wings back and say, "Here, you take it. I know you can't sleep without a pillow that completely collapses under your head."

If they exist, I don't want to beat up any of those geese.

No, the geese I'm talking about are the ones you see on TV's funny video programs. You know the videos: it's a beautiful spring day in the countryside, and somebody with, say, a basketful of leeks is skipping through a field when a big, angry goose comes out of nowhere with wings flailing and honking his head off. At first the person is puzzled: can this sweet, fluffy white thing really be coming after me? But then they realize it's moving like a missile with a pointy orange beak aimed directly at their crotch, and they run. As fast and as far as they can. They jump creeks and spring over fences, their leeks flying, millimeters away from the goose's angry choppers clamping down on their ass.

People laugh at these videos. Me, I don't think they're so funny.

First, I'm not a fan of unwarranted anger. What do geese have to be mad about? You're close to their nest? Whoopee. They don't have Time Warner Cable. They don't have landlords. Their friends with emergency keys don't barge in when they're trying to take a shower or masturbate, thinking that because they didn't answer a text within eight minutes they're probably sprawled out on the floor, dead.

Hey, Emma.

Second, it upends the natural order. I don't like the precedent set by running away from something so far down the food chain. If we let geese intimidate us, what's next? Rabbits? Hamsters? I refuse to put up with backtalk from other species. If I give Mr. Papadopoulos half a can of Cheapo Chow I don't want him hacking up hairballs on my shoes and thinking, "Buddy, this is your life until I get fuckin' Meow Mix." Next rats will be waking us in our beds, squeaking, "I can't get this Rice Crispies box open, and you used the scissors to trim your pubes."

Oddly, I don't have that same visceral reaction to monkey crime. You see them stealing our stuff all the time in other funny videos: tourists on mountaintops observing the cantankerous monkeys when suddenly one grabs their reading glasses and scampers up a tree. Personally, I'm fine with that. Monkeys are pretty close to us evolutionarily-wise, so it's entirely possible they have recipes to peruse or filing to do. I wouldn't blame them for getting bored in the forest and grabbing somebody's binoculars or cigarettes or fanny pack: I always pull out my cellphone when my boyfriend starts talking and he has other things to say than, "Eek eek eek."

Still, I don't want to give the wrong impression. I'm not ordinarily a tough guy, but geese aren't exactly Colin McGregor. They don't have muscles or tattoos: that would change everything. If I was in a field and a goose with a tiny teardrop tattooed under one eye came running after me, I would also run like hell. There'd be leeks all over the place. If he had a spiderweb tattooed around an ankle, I'd be completely freaked out. I'd jam YOUR ass into his beak so he'd leave MINE alone.

I think it's a fair fight, because there's just as much danger to me as there is to them. I'm a much bigger target, and they've had a lot more practice. They're more purposeful, and driven: if somebody got too close to my nest I'd be like, "Eh. It was just, like, eight minutes collecting twigs." I haven't run up to a stranger clucking since Jaegermeister passed twelve bucks a bottle.

Plus, I've never actually punched anything, especially something whose head is on a two-foot stalk. They're so fluffy I don't think I could even bruise one, while they could inflict serious damage on me. We're talking an actual animal bite, which would be painful. Maybe not alligator painful, since alligators have teeth, but about as painful as something can be when it has like a nerf ball for lips.

So anyway, it's on the list. And with all the geese here in Germany it's a distinct possibility. All I have to do is buy a basket, buy some leeks, and head for the countryside. I'll wander through fields. I'll scamper, I'll meander, I'll skip ... all while keeping my eyes wide open for the vengeful little bastards.

Eventually I'll spot one, and instead of running I'll stand tall. Of course, he'll be startled. He'll stop, confounded by a human being who has no fear. I'll lower my gaze to his round, pale face as he waddles up and squawks, "You want a piece of me? You want a piece of me?"

I'll be picturing a new video in my head. In it, I'll put the leeks down, slick back my hair, take off my shirt, crack my knuckles and say, "Yeah, you fluffy son of a bitch. And I'll start with a leg and a breast."

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

I've just been contemplating what a miracle the human body is. There are the eyes: complex sensors where 130 million cones and rods convert light into pictures that appear in your brain. And the ears: an intricate system of tubes and channels full of microscopic hairs and fluids that turn random air vibrations into sound.

Anyway, I'll see you later. I've got to wave my dangly thing over the toilet so I can pee.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Unbelievable. A friend of mine owns a business and he just got this letter from a customer.

______________________

U-Sav Law Form 271y-2015b



Official Notice of Refutation of Legal Culpability by Parent(s)
(Fill in blanks pertinent to specific incident)

Dear     Owner of Stoddard's Department Store    :

It has recently come to my attention that on     Thursday     you encountered some difficulties with my     daughter         Raddison    . Furthermore, I understand that you may wish to initiate legal action against    him   /  her.

Perhaps you are unaware of the fact that my     daughter     is a straight-     B-     student at the esteemed     Kids 'b' Here Day Care & TV Repair    , and recently received much acclaim for     hugging her maw-maw    . It is virtually unprecedented in this community that someone reaches such heights of accomplishment at the age of     she just turned six    .

As I understand it, the difficulty arose when my     daughter     decided it would not be deleterious to     spin around with her eyes closed and her arms out     for the reason that     everything disappears when you close your eyes    .

Though     Raddison     immediately understood the result of her actions and the fractional degree of culpability to which her parents would be exposed, it wasn't soon enough to avoid damage to     a bunch of shitty crystal    .

While     Raddison     sincerely regrets the incident, we are certain that upon further reflection you will understand that culpability lies just as much with     your shitty department store     as with us because     my husband is a LAWYER     and additionally     only a MORON would put merchandise out where CHILDREN can reach it!!!    .

It is our hope that you will discount the short-term profitability that might result from legal action and instead chalk up the incident to     YOUR IDIOTS!!!    . If you do, we are certain that the benefits you receive in future customer goodwill would far outweigh the     $40,000 in damages! UNBELIEVABLE! FOR A BUNCH OF UGLY CRYSTAL SWANS!!!     that you allegedly suffered from        BEING IDIOTS!!!     her    .

Sincerely,

    Mrs. Barbara Benelli    
(Write name here)

StatCounter