Thursday, December 20, 2012

Things I'm Fine With Ending Tomorrow

So December 21st, 2012 is almost here. Apparently the Mayans couldn't conceive of a world that lived past that expiration date, so according to their calendar (which, incidentally, could not possibly be synced to ours in any tangible capacity), the apocalypse is tomorrow. Who can blame them? When I was a kid, 12/21/12 was unfathomable. Forever. I never thought I'd get here.

Wow, so I've lived forever. Well, if the world ends tomorrow, I am so OK with it. I've traveled great parts of the world. I've met wonderful people. I've loved. I've lost. And loved again. And lost again. Even last week I ate and drank some pretty fabulous stuff. I've probably lived half of my life expectancy anyway. The rest is just hot flashes, wrinkles and sitting down at reunion concerts.

There's a lot of stuff I'd be happy to have erased from the planet if we really do sink into the primordial ooze tomorrow. Here's a list:

10) David Bowie covers. Hey, I'm actually a huge fan of a cover song when done correctly. The Violent Femmes version of "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me" is genius in its change of tempo and slight lyrical diversion from Culture Club's (plus Boy George himself has praised its originality.) The English Beat's "Tears of a Clown" takes the Smokey Robinson original, speeds it up, and somehow makes it more melancholy and joyful at the same time while staying completely respectful of the source material. And who doesn't love a heavy metal version of a Bee Gees disco song? But seriously. No one who can improve on David Bowie. There is no way you can capture the bleak desperation of a mid-1970s Berlin studio in the midst of a horrendous coke addiction and make it sound as haunting and poignant as he did. Nothing will sound as spectacular as that guitar crunch of the Ziggy days, or the strangely forgivable Teutonic pop style of a 1980s hit like "China Girl." You can't pull it off. So stop. Stop it right now. Except Bauhaus. You did OK with"Ziggy Stardust." But that's only because Peter Murphy was even skinnier than David Bowie when it was recorded and that lack of nourishment rings true. Bowie is still better though.

9) Hair removal. I have no idea how I grow hair as quickly as I do. I've made the joke that I was switched at birth with an Irish Catholic family. But now I'm realizing it was wookies. Shaving, waxing, depilatories, lasers - hell, I don't even think NASA has the technology to make my lower back hair disappear for more than 48 hours. Too much information? I don't care anymore. We're all going to die tomorrow anyway.

8) Bar and restaurant narcissism. Oh, good for you! You have a table at that place that doesn't take reservations and costs more for dinner than I make in a week! Fuck you. I'm going to eat at the place I know for a fact will be delicious, at a time when grown New York City adults, not octogenarian Floridians, eat the last meal of the day. Plus I am pretty sure I can return for something I truly crave. If I want bacon, I'll eat bacon. Not an icy gas that approximates the flavors of bacon. That goes for cocktails too. I'm broke. I just want to drink somewhere fun and dependable where I know I will have a good drink and enjoy it. If I am smooshed in with fifty other people, can't hang my coat anywhere, and paying $16 for the privilege of drinking yet another Manhattan riff? Trust me. I am not having fun.

7) Second round job interviews when the employer has no intention of hiring me. You made the decision the moment I walked in your door. Probably had someone younger and more affordable in mind in the first place. Stop wasting my time.

6) Debt. I pretty much don't have a dime to my name anymore and honestly, no intention or ability to pay this all back. Go on. Take me. It's all Monopoly money at this point. OK, maybe leave some of the booze in case I'm only mortally wounded first.

5) Brooklyn neighborhoods on their own axis, with no direct subway lines from anywhere useful. Since the earth is shifting, can't we just line everything up so transportation works all over the city? D train, I'm talking to you.

4) At least that ten minute trailer for Les Miserables will go away now. Whether or not we all die. I dreamed a dream actors like you would stop singing. While we're at it. Hey, Hugh? We're not buying it. Any of it. Notable mention: Gwyneth Paltrow, who must not only stop singing, but pretending she can cook too.

3) emails. You're right, and I appreciate what you do and stand for. Congress is a mess. No one is listening to each other. No one is getting anything accomplished. Health care is ridiculously expensive. People who thrive on negative attention will continue to say terrible things about women, homosexuals and immigrants. We all know our system is broken. You don't have to keep pointing that out. Every. Other. Hour.

2) Using your child's image for your Facebook profile picture. If my father had done that when I was three I would have been mortified. I know you think it's cute. Some of your kids are actually, kind of adorable. But I'm friends with YOU, not your infant son or daughter. That's just creepy. Especially when you post stuff about drinking or politics. Your dog? Even a decades younger version of yourself? Well, if you must.

1) Speaking of... doing terrible things to and in front of children. I know I haven't said much about what happened last week. But if the world ends and people don't shoot children in front of other children anymore that would be great. Because this can't continue. Those horrific images will never wash away. I mean, I am forever damaged merely from being accosted by a mime in Paris when I was 15. I can't begin to comprehend what it would have been like to see my best friend and teacher murdered in front of me before I turn 8, and have to trust someone to convince me to enter a class room again. Make new friends. Swing on a tire in a playground. Have conversations. I can't. I just can't. That would be a great thing to stop happening. Yes, please.

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