#103. What’s So Funny?

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I was contemplating what makes something funny. I think it can be boiled down to just five categories. I spent minutes and minutes racking my brain, but I’m fairly certain this list is exhaustive.

#1. Something unfortunate happening to someone who is not you.

            Examples: Irony, stupidity, falling down, being insulted, loosing money, and getting hit in the groin.

#2. Cursing (probably becasue one of the aforementioned things happened). Cursing made the list, because some people find it humorous. I don’t, because my mom reads this blog. Cursing is bad.

#3. Puns and sarcasm, which may correlate to irony or insults.

#4. Talking in weird voices.

#5. Varying degrees of flatulence and other inappropriately timed bodily functions.

I can’t seem to think of a single funny thing that doesn’t fit into one of these groups. Am I missing something? Please share with the rest of the class.

WARNING: If something doesn’t fit into one of these categories, it probably isn’t funny.

 

#102. Lent and Other Fluff

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Everyone knows about Mardi Gras. Fat Tuesday is that special time each year that gluttony, drunkenness, and every other vile form of debauchery is accepted and even encouraged, and if you’re “lucky” enough to celebrate in New Orleans, even minimum amounts of indecent exposure really isn’t that indecent. But what is Mardi Gras? The reality is that it’s the immediate precursor to Lent. So what is Lent? Lent is described as the 40 day period from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday. I know what you’re thinking. I thought the same thing. That’s time period is more than 40 days. It’s actually 46 days, but Sundays don’t count. BOOM!

Our church is placing some emphasis on Lent this year… not as some sort of works based salvation, but as a designated time to empty ourselves of lesser things so that we might be filled with greater things of the Gospel. I’ve never previously observed Lent, but I’ve decided between today and Friday, April 6th I will abstain from soda. Aside from the health benefits, it’s my hope that a conscious temporary change in behavior might serve as a physical reminder for the desired posture of my heart.

Since we are on the topic of goal setting, I thought I might throw out a few other ideas I’ve been kicking around recently. I’m still trying to think through how realistic some of these objectives are, but here is what I’m thinking: In the past seven months I’ve lost 25 pounds, and I completed my fourth half marathon in December! So how can I leverage some of that momentum toward achieving some new milestones?

In just 18 months I will turn 30 years old. By that time August 24, 2013, I would like to:

  1. Have completed my 5th half marathon (13.1 miles).
  2. Have completed my 1st sprint triathlon (500 meter swim, 12 mile bike, 5 K run).
  3. Have completed my 1st MS150 (150 mile, 2 day bike ride).
  4. Bench press 230 lbs. (lifted 215 in college 8 years ago)
  5. Dunk a basketball for the 1st time!

Are you observing Lent this year? Have you in the past? Do you have any long-term physical goals?

 

#101. Tie Bar

It’s Tuesday so…

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If you look closely you’ll see a tie bar. (not an establishment serving adult beverages where everyone wears a tie) Busted this guy out just to add a little flair this Tie Tuesday. Want to learn how to wear a tie bar properly? Check it out here.

#100. Top Ten

 

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If you are new to SOS or just love reminiscing like I do, then today is your lucky day. This is the 100th post here on Song of Sloman, so I thought it would be fitting to have a Top Ten list. No need to scroll through page after page (unless you want to). Here’s some of the best stuff all in one place. The following are the ten most read posts since starting almost a year ago. There are also a couple of my personal favorites, and since blogging is basically tooting your own horn anyway… why not toot a little louder? Enjoy the weekend everybody!

 

Song of Sloman Top Ten:

10. Friday

9. Catch a Grenade for Jesus

8. On the Road Again

7. Roll Out

6. Good Moring Vietnam

5. The Marriage Bully

4. How to Make Friends after College

3. Early to Bed

2. Let’s Go Mavs

1. Sandwich Statements

 

Honorable Mention:

Lavatorical Loathing

 

Bonus (Author’s Favorite):

Subway Troubadour

 

 

#99. Clipper’s High

 

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Yesterday I experienced that all too infrequent mild euphoria that accompanies clipping my toe nails. TMI? No? I didn’t think so either. What’s that? You thought this post was about Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, and the Lob City Clippers? You were way off. I got you so good.

But seriously, you know the feeling I’m describing… when you clip that just slightly too-long nail that somehow missed it’s turn the last time and has been digging into its neighboring toe. I know you know, but how does this go unnoticed in the first place? The sad fact is that your feet are like the offensive linemen of your body’s team. As long as they do their job well, everything is fine and everyone else gets the credit for all of the great accomplishments being accomplished, but one false start… one broken bone and all eyes are on that stupid foot. “Oh, there’s that stupid foot again. He’s always screwing things up for us. All we wanted to do was play some basketball or take a shower without having to keep him sealed up in a Ziploc bag. What a diva!”

All the blame and none of the glory, but that’s where the clipping comes in. Once every week or two you bust out those clippers and go to town. Oh the satisfaction of trimming those keratin claws! (I would assume a similar jubilance ensues when cutting the fingernails as well, but alas, I suffer in the habitual bondage of nail biting, left to merely fantasize of snipping and filing a one-day-beautiful nail collection.)

Perhaps I’m over romanticizing the idea, but then again, maybe I’m not. Do you experience “Clipper’s High”?

 

 

#98. Tie Tuesday

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Three weeks ago I jumped on a bandwagon being driven by one of my coworkers. We call this growing wagon party “Tie Tuesday”. We work in an office dominated by engineers and their army of Polos and open collared dress shirts. Our small band of neck flourished brothers is wading against this naked neck trend, and I am happy to report the tide is beginning to wish it would turn if it could. Today we had new compatriot sporting a fashionable nape noose. So next week dust off one of those old ties in the back of your closet, slip on your favorite argyle socks, and join us in celebrating Tie Tuesday!

As a side note there are some grumblings about marrying Thai Tuesdays with Tie Tuesdays and calling it Thai Tie Tuesdays. May it never be! Thai people are wonderful, but their food is horrendous. These musings must be silenced.

Do you Tie Tuesday?

 

#97. Reluctant Rivalry

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Here in the Dallas – Fort Worth Metroplex there has been a lot of discussion recently on the local sports radio stations regarding a budding rivalry between the Dallas Mavericks and the Oklahoma City Thunder. This debate of course bled into our office discussions resulting in minor emotional scarring as well as unintended surfacing of ignorance.

Proponents for labeling said matchup a rivalry like to use a lot of touchy feely verbiage to muddle and confuse the issue. “The players bring added intensity to these games.” “Things get extra heated and downright chippy.” “There is developing hatred between fans and players.”

Blah, blah, blah, blah…

Definition time.

Rivalry: Competition for the same objective or for superiority in the same field.

Facts:

Until the most recent matchup, the Mavericks had won seven of the last ten contests. The Thunder achieved only one victory in a five game playoff series against the Mavs this past year.

So the “experts” on the radio and some of my more delusional co-workers believe that due to frequency of meetings and geographical proximity of the two clubs as well as the aforementioned distaste for each other, a rivalry has developed.

Does any of this fluff sound like a competition for superiority to you? It sounds like pre-eminence has been definitively secured by the Mavericks to me.

When I was eight and my brother was five, we would play and wrestle. It would undoubtedly escalate, but it was never a rivalry. He would push a little too far; thinking he was bigger than he was, then I would impose my will and make him cry. That’s not competition. That’s domination. Fast forward eight to ten years, and my brother was now equal in size or slightly bigger than me. 

 

Now we had a competition on our hands. Either of us might win, and we would both certainly end up exhausted. At some point I came home from college one weekend and picked the usually fight. I had vastly underestimated how much bigger and stronger “little” brother had gotten. We don’t wrestle anymore if I can help it.

Maybe I’ll concede this is a one-sided rivalry where one party thinks they are on the verge of truly accomplishing something (and maybe they are). But big brother is still capable of squashing little brother like an insignificant insect, completely unaware of the impending storm that is most assuredly brewing.

Final thought:

This past Wednesday these two “rivals” clashed at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. The Mavericks ultimately lost, but the game was tied with two minutes left, and here’s the kicker: Dirk Nowitski, the Mavs all-time leading scorer, coming off a week of rest and battling back from knee pain, only had eight points on a dismal two of fifteen shooting. On top of that, Hall of Fame starting point guard Jason Kidd was not playing due to injury. Starting center Brendan Haywood was out with back soreness, and last year’s Sixth Man of the Year, Lamar Odom was sick and didn’t play.

So yeah, maybe this is a rivalry, and maybe next year Merriam-Webster will alter the definition of the word to better suit people’s skewed perspectives.

Does this sound like a rivalry to you? How do you define rivalry?