Design the US/Mexico Border Fence Contest – Win a Trip to Yucatan

I’ve got a great idea. I want to pitch a reality show to TLC or HGTV or Bravo network. A group of designers compete to create a design for the fence on the US border with Mexico. I think it’s brilliant. With the popularity of interior design, who wants an ugly fence?


Grand prize winner spends a week in the Yucatan peninsula where he or she can burn their skin on tourist-infested beaches, visit Mayan ruins where one can imagine (thanks to Mel Gibson) graphic human sacrifices once took place and lose at least 10 pounds drinking local tap water. I can attest to this because I once visited the Yucatan and ate Sopa de Lima (Lime Soup). It looked like pond water and I was rewarded with a vicious case of explosive diarrhea that made long bus trips through the peninsula’s interior particularly adventurous.

So, send in your design ideas! Get crazy! Don’t be afraid to be bold!

Here are a few spit-balled ideas…

Pink Floyd Border… “All in all it’s just another…”


It’s a little plain and could get monotonous after 700 miles but I think it’s classy.

But nothing says classy like a white picket fence. Our fence could be so dainty and elegant that any of our Southern friends would be ashamed to vault over it.


If that doesn’t work. If we can’t make an aesthetic appeal to our neighbors, we could always go with a cost-effective chain-link.


It is a little white trash. When I was a kid, it was understood that only rednecks put chain-link fences in their front-yard, but the backyard was fair game. And the border to the South is America’s backyard. So, I doubt the rest of the world would view us as rednecks for this design.

We could take a page out of Israel’s book and go with something a bit more in the popular penitentiary style.


In fact, if you’re into the metallic look, why hold back? Make it electrifying… It’s almost like Christmas.


Or we could just refuse to spend money on the 700 miles of Senate-approved fence and make it the individual’s responsibility to fence themselves. Less government in our lives. If you live close to the border and have safety concerns about the illicit activities of immigrantes, it should be your own responsibility to buy a fence for each of your loved ones. Something portable, yet secure…


That may be extreme.

Maybe the classic designs are the best. A Southwestern style, rustic, barbed wire fence can be adorable…


                                         photo by: Derrald Farnsworth-Livingston

The old Berlin Wall allowed for artistic expression and could be considered a government sponsored program for the arts…


Ireland’s stone walls are nice…


How about a little, old-fashioned Americana? A border fence modeled on a baseball outfield wall. We can rent out ad space for 700 miles. We can keep Mexicans out and sell shit to them at the same time.


My favorite outfield wall… Fenway Park’s Green Monster Border…


I’m afraid that we must again look to China as a trend-setting country. Not for social concerns or human rights but for no-nonsense practicality. The Great Wall of China is the perfect inspiration for our new border. 700 miles? That’s nothing. The Chinese could construct our wall in a week. The Great Wall was finished over 2000 years ago and spans 4000 miles and a mountain range.


Drawing inspiration from the practicality of the Chinese, we should hire Mexican laborers to build our wall. This idea is also inspired by the time my family built a wood fence around our backyard. We asked the neighbors to chip in and  finish both sides of the fence with nice wood slats. The cheap family on one side of us didn’t want to chip in, so we left their side unfinished.

So, here’s how it works.  We have Mexican laborers work on our side, first. Add a nice stone finish – we can get cheap supplies and labor from Mexico. Once they begin working on their own side of the wall, we cut funding.


It sounds a little cold, but Mexico should pay if they want their side of the fence beautiful, too. It’s only fair. And if we want to compete with China, we need to start by building the Great Wall of America.

These are just ideas. I want to see America’s designs.

Good luck! Let’s make a beautiful border!


We Don’t Make up Things Here in Hollywood

“We Don’t Make Up Things Here in Hollywood.” I overheard a studio exec saying that in a hallway at Paramount. I don’t know what he was talking about… but I can imagine…

The other day, I found myself lying to executives in a pitch meeting. That is not unusual. I don’t find it unethical, either. This business is built on lies. In fact, I never let the truth get in the way of a good story. But here’s the interesting thing about it, truth never gets in the way of a good story anymore.

Let me explain. I was pitching this idea. A comedy. As I pitched, they smiled politely. Just courtesy smiles. That happens with executives sometimes. In fact, you can’t be discouraged and assume that you’re bombing in these situations. Good sales can come from a coldly stoic and straight-faced room of executives.

One of the executives stopped me and asked, “Is this real? Did this really happen?”

I saw their eager faces. They wanted this ridiculous story that I was telling to be real.

“Yes,” I said. “It really happened to me.”

They all laughed.

There it is. We want everything to be real, now. Even comedy. If it isn’t real, no one seems interested anymore.

It’s a strange thing to lie about an imaginative story being reality-based. I actually took credit away from myself… from my own imagination… and I got the laugh. Now, I do it all the time. I preface everything with, “True story…”

But why does everything have to be real? What’s happened to our imaginations?

Borat is a very funny comedy. Jackass has it’s moments, too. But, particularly with the latter, since when is this material for a feature, motion picture? Reality comedy.

A lot of my friends have been fans of improv comedy for quite a while. Is improv comedy really that great? Let’s be completely honest with one another. It usually sucks. Really bad. I’ve seen enough bad improv to last a lifetime. I don’t want it anymore. I hate it. It’s painful to watch untalented comedians panhandle an audience for courtesy laughs. Or worse, those silly improv audience members who guffaw at every inane plot-twist and joke that were really created because the actor doesn’t know what the fuck to do next.

I want to see well-scripted, well-acted scenes with thoughtful direction. I think we can still laugh at material presented this way.

Do we have to sit and watch unskilled, hyper contestants open suitcases every night with dollar amounts inside? And honestly, don’t the contestants seem to be more interested in being famous for their TV appearance than walking away with prize money?

Okay, I’m not gonna’ harp on it too much. But really, we are more interested in people’s used experiences than creating imaginative scenarios on our own. People will sit and watch a webcam of someone talking about stupid shit rather than read a novel or play an instrument. I read that non-fiction books outnumber published fiction titles, 4-1. We’re also obsessed with memoirs.

Enough of real life. We should be sick of real life. I pitched a TV comedy about repo men (based on the film I shot, The Almost Guys). The networks weren’t biting. But now I keep seeing advertisements for a Spanish language show, Operation Repo, a reality show about repo guys.

Basically, you can get any family or group of jackasses to allow cameras to follow them around and document their real but manipulated lives. It’s exploitative, cheap production and forgettable fluff.

C’mon guys… C’mon Hollywood… make some shit up… let writers write stories. Let actors act. Allow the imagination back into storytelling.

I got an idea for you. True story…

I’m Not In This Business To Give 16 Year-olds Boners

Okay, so I think I’m losing out on a job. I’ve been meeting to direct a feature, a teen comedy that takes place in the world of 1980’s retro porn. Because don’t we all wax nostalgic for 80’s porn?

To be truthful, it’s a good concept and I didn’t want to pass up the chance to direct a potential commercial hit. I could possibly redeem myself for passing up on American Pie and The Girl Next Door. The script changes I suggested were thoughtful, but too aggressive.

It all came down to erections… boners, I should say, in order to speak appropriately to the target audience. God knows that I wasn’t trying to make this script something that it wasn’t supposed to be. But maybe just a little texture, a little more clever wouldn’t hurt, right? At one point, one of the producers said to me, “If we aren’t giving 16 year-old boys instant boners with this film, then we’re not doing our job.” He’s right. “Is there a way to measure that in our test audience?” I asked.


“Write poems for Granta and just give us the funny stuff,” a previous agent once reprimanded me. And she was right, I suppose. But honestly, and if my agent is reading this… I wasn’t trying to make a Merchant/Ivory film out of a teen sex comedy. American Pie meets Sense & Sensibility

So, it goes. Another job down the toilet. I hope they do well. The producer is actually a decent, intelligent guy and the film has a sweet side that I hope comes through. Maybe I should just accept that I didn’t get into this business to give 16 year-olds boners. Not that it isn’t a noble and necessary endeavor. But, as I recall, it’s not terribly hard to give a 16 year-old boy a boner. In fact, I can recall defining moments that unleashed a flood of pubescent hormones in my past. When I was a little kid, I saw Beverly D’Angelo take her top off in Hair. She continued to haunt me through National Lampoon’s Vacation series. The memory is so crisp that I couldn’t bear to look her in the eye when I saw her at a Hollywood soiree a few years ago.


Pam Grier could have walked on screen in a nun’s habit and I would have shot to full mast in less time than separates Olympic sprinters. Then Madonna did just that, challenging sexual taboos and monopolizing an unreasonable section of real estate in my mind.

I was tormented and conflicted about which female cast member of St. Elmo’s Fire to create fantasies around. I knew that Ally Sheedy was adorable and much more practical but God, try as I did, I couldn’t get Demi Moore out of my mind. As for Mare Winningham…


And the fact that Phoebe Cates hasn’t aged at all since I saw her in Fast Times, makes me question my own emotional development – am I just perceiving her that way? Frozen in my adolescent memory in a red bikini by the pool.


So, there’s nothing wrong with giving 16 year-old boys boners. Let’s face it, in this business… big boners equals big money. But I think this generation of 16 year-olds may be a little hard to reach… or move, so to speak. With easy access to the most graphic images online, what could possibly impress them? (I hate to think what nightmarish images they may recall years from now.) I guess that’s why I thought we could try to beef up the “story” elements. A little old-fashioned imagination. Could be worth a shot.

But I’ll leave all that up to the boner experts in Hollywood. And maybe I just feel a little stupid as a grown man working to arouse 16 year-olds in dark movie theaters across the country. It’s a little creepy.

But, it was a job.

Is Superman really Fabulousman?

Is Superman gay? It’s okay if he is. We should be okay with that. He does wear powder blue nylons and red leather boots. And a cape. He’s a bit of a dandy; it’s safe to say. He is very well-groomed. He has great hair.

This year, America was treated to another Superman movie. Superheroes are enjoying a tremendous rise in popularity lately. That’s understandable considering the prevailing uncertainty and fear that our government encourages. But really, is Superman all that super? If he is a projection of the perfect man, what’s the kryptonite all about? Achilles had his heel, I guess. Sampson’s hair. If I were a feminist, I would say that the kryptonite is quite possibly a symbol of Superman’s fear of inadequacy… erectile dysfunction. Maybe there’s more to that phrase that Superman yells, “Up, up and… away?”

Why doesn’t Superman have sex in the movies? Of course, his costume has no buttons or zippers. And he wears it underneath his clothes. Does he ever take it off? Does he launder it? Does he have a few backups?


Nietzsche coined the term Superman (Ubermensch). Nietzsche and Superman are both existentialists. Does Superman ever get depressed? Maybe Superman is bipolar. Split personality. Schizophrenic super hero?

Is Lois Lane a member of the so-called liberal media?

A lot of the other superheroes are pretty silly. And honestly, it isn’t fair that men have a Superman while women get stuck with a Wonderwoman. I’d rather be “super” than “wonder.”

We don’t really have myths in this country. We’re not big on legends, unless they play professional sports. So, why do we cling to this high-flying dandy in a fabulous outfit?

The creation of superheroes offers a glimpse into our subconscious and what Carl Jung referred to as our culture’s collective unconscious and… basically, just crap that turns us on. And since we did our best to destroy the myths of North America’s native inhabitants, we employed a collection of disgruntled comic book geeks to create spandexed superheroes and villains with capes, cowls and silly boots. But they always have great hair. Have there been any bald superheroes? Mr. Clean doesn’t count. He’s in sales.

Last year, the US Army was creating a comic book superhero to distribute in the Middle East. Part of their psychological warfare operations. I’m not sure if the comic was ever finished. It’s a great idea, though, isn’t it? If bunker busters can’t subdue the Middle East and eradicate terrorism, drawings of steroid-ripped, fabulously dressed superheroes with unusual powers and undetermined sexual orientation should finish the job.

I was looking at comic book superheroes in other countries and I have to say, Brazil is impressive. Basically, they have a lot of Hot Chick Superheroes. When I was a kid, I would have preferred this to the Batman series and my older brother’s Archie comics.


As for India… I really love that country, but their superheroes look a little goofy…


This guy’s name is Shaktimaan.  He’s an Eastern Indian version of Erik Estrada.  Kind of looks like a costume from the Jacksons Victory Tour 1985. Or maybe Earth, Wind & Fire.

Australia celebrates a superhero/detective named Lionel Demane…


We’ve seen these guys before, haven’t we?


Mexico can get a little silly..


The Netherlands created an interesting superhero. Zeeuws Meisje is a farm girl. The story goes that after The Great Traffic Jam, all the roads were useless and agriculture nearly destroyed – except for pickles. This is no Al Gore documentary. I’m not making this up. The Farm Girl doesn’t have any super powers, but solves problems with her very high intelligence.


I don’t think this would ever work in America. A woman in dowdy farm clothes solving practical environmental problems with simple intelligence? Impossible.

Germany’s Baron Munchhausen is an adventurer who tells incredible stories of riding cannonballs and traveling to the moon.


He doesn’t wear spandex and his abs are definitely not ripped.

I suppose everyone has their own idea of a superhero based on desires, archetypes and fears.


I just think we in America can do a little better than Superman. And taking a close look at him with his red, leather boots, cape and hair product – he’s actually more Fabulous Man.

We should create a new superhero that is indisputably better than all the others. Rather than Super, he could be The Best Man. But that’s too matrimonial. He would have to wear a nice tux as a costume. And there would have to be Divorce Man and Mistress as the villains.

Let’s face it, “super” is no longer good enough for us. How about The Greatest Man? Or just The Number One Man? And the villain could be a woman. How about Miss Fit? She could be an athletic, aerobics-obsessed, sexy villain with cut abs and dangerously low body fat.

Climbing the Gates of Paramount – Valuable Tips on How to Break Into the Film Biz

In defense of Aleksey Vayner… I don’t know how many of you are aware of this guy. He’s a junior at Yale who sent a video resume to financial institutions. On the video, he stages a mock interview with a screen presence that rivals the pretension of William F. Buckley. In a comical, self-important tone, Vayner talks about his personal philosophy, which sounds like a pastiche of some well-worn self-help motivational books and dialogue from the “Rambo” franchise. Things like, “Failure is not an option.” Then, to really push the “resume” into the absurd, Vayner includes clips of himself supposedly ski jumping, breaking a stack of bricks with a martial arts strike, ballroom dancing, hitting a “140 mph” tennis serve and lifting “495 lbs.”… damn, just short of 500. I like the way he showed some restraint, here. I mean, who would believe that he could bench press 500 lbs? But 495… sure.


So, he may have embellished his exploits a bit. Some joker in the personnel department at one of the investment firms that Vayner applied to leaked the video resume. A little site called YouTube (valued at a 1.65 gazillion dollars) got a hold of it and the rest is history. The kid is the laughing stock of the internet – which, I guess, means the world.

Yale newspapers and blogs have had a field day feeding on one of their own. And honestly, I feel sorry for the kid. He didn’t want everyone to see this video. Just prospective employers. And sure, that’s a little stupid. But what’s with all those ponces at Yale making fun of him? Haven’t we all done stupid shit? I’m the King of Stupid Shit. The kid was just trying to get a job. Although, Vayner also claims to have authored a book, Women’s Silent Tears, a women’s perspective of the Holocaust, which consists of plagiarized passages from other books. Okay, so maybe he’s a little nuts.

I am reminded, however, of my own attempt to find employment while roaming around New York, suffering from something like dissociative fugues during the recession of the early 90’s. I wrote a series of humorous (or, so I thought) letters to magazines. The letter was corny and I’d hate to have anyone publish it. All I remember was ending it with, “At least interview me, I own a great new suit.”

A couple of the magazines actually called and asked me to come in for an interview. The interviews were disasters. The junior editor of a magazine, Connoisseur, was very cool and informed me that I would need a trust fund to work at the magazine and survive in New York. All the other new employees had them. In fact, he made it clear that I may be the only guy in New York City without a trust fund.

My next interview was Vogue magazine.


I don’t remember who I interviewed with but I remember that she looked like my alcoholic/saidistic 6th grade math teacher. Her face looked like one of those Northern European renaissance portraits by Jan Van Eyck or Hans Holbein of royalty who pose with an expression that looks like they are in desparate need of a good shit.



She asked me what it was about Vogue that I found interesting. I told her that I thought the magazine smelled really good. I then laughed too loud out of nervousness. She managed to not move one muscle in her face in response. I could have stood up and urinated on the coffee table between us and generated less disdain.

I didn’t get the job. In fact, I barely made enough money to survive that year, slept on couches of college friends with practical degrees in finance and listed my occupation as “Malcontent” on my IRS return.

So, how far have I come?

A few months ago, I surpassed some of my past stupidity in the interview process. I was up for a pretty high profile job at Paramount. MTV Films was thinking of re-making Urban Cowboy.


I worked with a producer and put together a treatment. In fact, I spent so much time developing this thing… discussing, endlessly, what Bud’s dream is and what Sissy’s dream is. Character arcs and narrative spines and all that shit that development executives love to talk about ‘til the fucking cows come home. In fact, I could have filmed a clay-mation version of the film all by myself in the time we spent discussing Bud’s character arc. And, honestly, the most impressive thing about the original was Debra Winger riding a mechanical bull in a flimsy top. It literally launched me into puberty.


So, anyway, this was my final pitch to MTV Films. I got to the Paramount gate and realized that I forgot my wallet. Since 9/11, the studios are insane about security. They wouldn’t let me in. I told them that I was expected at MTV Films. Yes, I was on the list with a drive-on pass, but without an ID to prove who I was, someone from MTV would have to come to the gate and walk me in.

I drove away. I was too embarrassed to have everyone in the meeting know that I was stuck at the gate. So, I drove into the adjacent neighborhood and parked on the street. I walked past the main gate and along the wall surrounding the studio compound. That’s it. Fuck it! I’m going over the wall.

paramount.jpgIt’s not an easy wall to get over. You have to find a remote area, preferably far away from the building in which your meeting is scheduled. At this point, I was late and imagined executives at MTV watching as a prospective writer/director climbs over the studio wall outside their window.

I found a spot and began climbing, immediately grateful for all the pull-ups I’ve done at Venice Beach.
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
Studio security. I didn’t even see him walk up.
How does one respond? “I’m going over the wall,” I say.
“I can see that.”

I thought about running. I could have outrun him. But I felt stupid. There, I was… a man in his 30’s climbing a wall to get a job.

A mild, perfunctory threat of arrest was made, but I could tell the Security Guard’s heart wasn’t in it and I detected a degree of admiration that I actually made the climb.

Someone eventually had to come from MTV Films and escort me onto the lot. I felt like I was taken to the principal’s office. As for Urban Cowboy, I didn’t get the job. After all that work, detailed treatment and the distillation of “Bud and Sissy’s dream.” And my erotic memories of Debra Winger on the bull. And my climbing skills.  My agent told me that things are pretty shaky and unstable at Paramount  right now and the project wasn’t moving forward. Frankly, I think I shit the bed on the pitch. I was a little distracted, after all (and winded).

So, back to our young Yalie, Aleksey Vayner. a-vayner-dancing.jpg

I hope the guy gets a job and he can laugh at this misstep eventually. Internet infamy is ephemeral, let’s hope. If someone has footage of my athletic entrance onto the Paramount lot, I wouldn’t mind a good laugh at my expense. That kind of perspective comes with age. And being the King of Stupid Shit.

And, finally, here’s the tip: If you really want to break into Hollywood… and nothing else works… there’s a little section of the wall surrounding Paramount Studios near the corner of Melrose and Van Owen that is relatively easy to scale. I suggest comfortable shoes with traction.

A Survey of World Leader’s Hair Styles and Why I Miss Old-Fashioned Communism

Yesterday, I was reading about the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Il and I couldn’t help but notice… he has the worst hair of any world leader… present or past.
hair Kim_Il_Jong_sm.jpg

The glasses are a bit more Nicholson than Bono. But the hair? It’s just bad hair. The profile is worse…
hair kim_jong_il_profile.jpg
Is it teased up to add a few inches to Kim’s dimunitive stature? I read somewhere that he’s actually shorter than Napoleon.

This guy, despite his comic appearance, makes me sad. I feel a wave of nostalgia… for good, old school Communism. I know that North Korea is one of the few remaining Communist states, but it’s not the fun kind of Communism that I grew up with. The Communism that we all loved to hate like a schoolyard bully.

The world is a mess right now. It really is. I found the secrecy and deadlock of the Cold War much more comforting. Bring back Communism of the big, bad Soviet Union kind. America needs a big, simple enemy. Like a crosstown rival. It’s healthy. The Olympics were so much more exciting, then. We knew who to root for. We knew that East German women athletes were cheating and using steroids. You can’t hide much in a swimsuit. Now, all the athletes use “performance enhancement” drugs. They don’t even have the decency to restrict themselves to simple, good, old-fashioned testosterone.

And Communism also inspired all those great 80’s movies like “Gorky Park,” “Moscow on the Hudson,” “White Nights.”

“Say you, say me…” Sing it, Lionel.

I need to know who to be a afraid of. I like the idea of the Iron Curtain. That’s so wonderfully dramatic. And the Berlin Wall. The mystery is exciting. But, not to digress. Back to hair. I know that Kim Jong Il is a really bad guy who just so happens to think he’s divine, but who wants a silly villain with effeminate hair?

Our very own G.W. has the standard issue, “regular” haircut. When I was a kid, you could walk into a barbershop and just say, “I’ll have the regular.” That’s what Jr. gets. Frankly, it’s boring.

hair Bush.jpg

He needs to be more aggressive. A little more hip. Kerry had kind of a helmet on his head. Maybe to remind us that, despite a nasty, fictional smear campaign, he really did captain a swift boat. God, those Republican PR guys are good. I wish I could hire them.

Reagan and Stalin both used a lot of hair product. The result… one is beloved as a grandfather who may forget sometimes while the other is reviled as a heartless dictator who never forgot the names of his enemies. But maybe it was just the mustache…


What about Tony Blair? He used to sport a rock and roll, Haight-Ashbury look, but then he caved and went with the Bush “regular.” If he had held firm and stuck with his own rebel look (although it’s very “Spinal Tap” and not flattering at all), then maybe he wouldn’t have followed Bush into Iraq like a little schoolboy.


Does the kid on the left look like he wants to go to war in the Middle East? Not the brawler type. However he does look a little gullible.

I like Japan’s prime minister Koizumi. I’m not a big fan of the style, but at least he doesn’tlook like every other world koizumihari.png.

Upon further consideration… it might be a little silly. But the guy actually has a personality and a good sense of humor and perhaps he’s just having some fun…

hair Japan.jpg

Mary Robinson, president of Ireland, sports the female equivalent of “the regular.”

hair Mary Robinson match w Koizumi.JPG

It’s not very exciting, but it got her elected. Maybe someday our progressive nation will elect a woman as president… Nahhh. Even Ireland, not known to travel in the fast lane of social progress…

Okay, this blog is getting boring. You can talk about hair for only so long. But we should at least feature Gaddafi. I like that he stays with the same cut, but just a added a hat to disguise any thinning and re-invent himself as a benign world leader.

hair muammar Khadafi.jpg

Oh, and then there’s this guy… former dictator in desperate need of a Queer Eye makeover.

hair Hussein.jpg

So much potential there, just wasted. What a shame. Although, wait. Maybe the Hussein look is becoming vogue. Hollywood is so fickle. It’s like the WWE wrestling. Good guys become bad guys, become good guys again. It’ as confusing as world politics.

And then there’s Bashir, president of Sudan. Most Americans couldn’t point to Sudan on a map. It’s not really a place of interest. Just a little run-of-the-mill genocide, “ethnic cleansing” and civil war. An Islamist government supporting militias that torture, murder and rape. 1.5 million people dead from Civil War. 400,000 displaced in Darfur. But China already has their oil… so, fuck it.
hair el-bashir.jpg

Ah, there’s the problem. We’re not interested in Darfur, genocide or Sudan because we can’t see President Bashir’s hair. And not only that, he has the sloppiest turban I’ve ever seen. Unacceptable.

If only we could go back to the black and white of the Cold War. Religious zealots (even in our country), war lords, ancient sectarian disputes… it’s all so very confusing. It’s nothing like pro wrestling. It doesn’t make for good movies. And I can’t imagine Lionel Richie or Phil Collins writing the theme song.

Hair is far more cut and dry than world politics.

That’s a pun, isn’t it? I hate puns.

Bipolar? Or Just Human?

My friend emailed me the other day to ask if I was happy? It took me a few days to respond because I wasn’t very comfortable with my answer. Am I happy? Right now? No. Sometimes? Sure. I’m ecstatic sometimes. But right now, I’m not. And maybe I’m okay with that. Maybe later, I’ll be happy, again. Does that make me bipolar? I don’t think so. Human and moody? Probably.

brain photo.jpeg

Have you noticed all the advertisements on television for anti-depressants and sleep aids in between reality shows displaying a variety of mental disorders and dysfunction within families with monstrous kids, cosmetic surgery makeovers, models out modeling each other? “Ask your doctor if Paxil is right for you,” the commercials advise. That means, basically, self-prescribe. After all, who knows you better than you do? But should we really be prescribing drugs for ourselves based on a general list of symptoms that any normal person with the IQ of a chimp should experience?

Why do we think that we should all bounce around giggling like a Disney cartoon? I’d rather ride the ups and downs. I must say that I’ve known a few poor souls who sink to such depths that living is too painful. They need help. But most of us should feel sad once in a while. After all, there’s a lot of sad shit happening all over the world. And if it makes us sad, if we find that our eyes tear up during the evening news… then we might just be human… empathizing with other humans. Imagine that. Frankly, if you don’t feel sad once in a while, then you might as well go back to swinging from tree limbs, picking bugs off your friend’s ass and figuring out how to make a rudimentary tool out of a broken branch. We’re human. We should feel things.

I know quite a few people who work in the entertainment business who obsess over their mood, physical ailments and share a generally bleak and dismal outlook. They complain all the time that they’re wealthy and successful, yet they’re so unhappy. But here’s the rub… they’re assholes! They should be miserable! They treat people like shit and spend their days knotted up with envy, jealousy and a plummeting self-esteem. So, they consult psychiatrists and quickly jump on a cycle of anti-depressants. To the doctors, I say, “Don’t write the prescriptions! They’re assholes! They should be depressed! They should be fetal position, pillow-clutching depressed! They’ve earned it!”

ass + hole.jpeg

Personally, I would like to see empathy make a big comeback. I think we should start taking pills to “feel” even more than we do now. I’m not saying that I hope we all start weeping and hugging through melodramatic, manipulative insurance commercials, but I’d like to see people stop numbing themselves. Then maybe we’ll get pissed off more about abuse of our environment, education, women being treated like shit all over the world and you know… big issues.

So, you’re feeling a little down, huh? Come on, you bunch of apes, get off your asses and stand up! Don’t make a monthly donation to drug companies and your local doctor. Smoke a joint, take a walk, get laid or – here’s a novel idea – do something to improve yourself, your community. Just do something.

I feel a good mood coming on.