[about the author]
i actually like speaking in front of large crowds. freakish,
i work crossword puzzles in ink.
i am the american nigella lawson. or maybe the american eddie
izzard. can't decide, really.
i would be a really good mom, but i'm cool with being a really
i am sometimes more perceptive than i would like to be.
i am fiercely loyal. sometimes, stupidly so.
i never play dumb. never.
i am way too hard on myself.
i am a change agent.
i sometimes cross that fine line between assertive and aggressive.
i am not afraid to tell people that i love them.
i am militantly pro-choice.
i am pro-adoption.
i know a little bit about alot of things.
i typically enjoy the company of men more than women.
i am capable of being really mean and nasty, but i fight it.
i am a lifelong cubs fan. do not laugh.
i have been known to hold a grudge.
i have hips.
i am not my sister.
i am lousy at forgiving myself.
i am an indoor kind of gal.
i am a bargain shopper. to the point of obsession.
i am 32 flavors. and then some.
a little unhealthy competition never hurt anyone
i had a pretty low-key weekend. i spent part of my time on the most ridiculous thing: practicing my skills at a video game. granted, it’s a pretty cool video game (soul calibur, on the unfortunately departed dreamcast), but that’s no way to spend your weekend.
and why was i practicing my swordsmanship? ‘cause i’m one competitive bitch, that’s why. i’m tired of getting my ass kicked day after day on this thing. i think i do a pretty good job of being a gracious winner, which i think is very important. but, i have a long way to go when it comes to being a gracious loser. so, i could practice my losing skills…or not lose anymore. i vote b.
i’ve always been competitive. even in trivial things. i hate to lose…arguments, spelling bees, video games, board games…doesn’t matter. i just hate to lose.
i remember several years ago, two of my friends had this asinine game. i hesitate to even attempt to explain it here because it is, truly, ridiculous. i don’t even think it had a name, per se, but we always referred to it as meat-gazing.
here’s the gist:
the goal was to get your opponent to "meat gaze*." to do this, you would make the okay sign (inexplicably referred to as ‘throwing meat’) and get your opponent to look at it (gaze). when they did (this was called a “get”), you got to give them two sucker punches in the arm and ridicule them as a “meat-gazer.”
listen, i told you it was ridiculous.
anyway, k and b were constantly playing this game. i think they both had permanently bruised arms. it was non-stop…there was never a time when they weren’t trying to get each other. it was hysterical, honestly. they worked together, although i think the term “work” is very loosely used in this case because they actually spent their days trying to come up with new and creative ways to get the other to meat-gaze.
i don’t remember what led me to challenge b, who was the undisputed champ. i just remember that i did. and, almost immediately, the game was on. we both went all out. and, even b had to admit that i was a formidable opponent – no amateur league, here.
i remember driving to work one morning, and noticing a car next to me. out of the corner of my eye, i could see that the car kept pulling alongside, then falling back a bit, then pulling alongside again, then falling back. i was getting extremely pissed.
“what a jackass,” i muttered.
finally, after several minutes of this, i looked over to see what kind of idiot this guy was.
too late, i realized i’d been had.
b had leaned his seat back so i couldn’t see his face. but there was no doubt it was him. all i could see was his hand, in the driver’s window, throwing meat, plain as day.
“son of a bitch!” i screamed.
then, b’s head popped up, and he turned to me. he was laughing so hard, he must have been crying. he self-high-fived and sped away.
“son of a bitch!”
by the time i arrived at my desk, i already had a voice mail from b…and several other friends. all mocking me.
“oh, the mighty have fallen!”
“my condolences on your humiliation.”
all included copious laughter.
i spent the morning fuming. i couldn’t believe i’d been beaten! the ultimate gaze! although it really was a masterful “get,” i wasn’t willing to concede defeat.
i knew i had to outdo b’s “get.” but how?
that evening, i waited with friends at our regular watering hole. b came in, walked up to me and shook my hand.
“i admit it – you are the queen. a truce?”
“truce,” i smiled.
victory was mine.
that afternoon, as i thumbed through the yellow pages i had stumbled onto the most amazing ad. i photocopied it, and, with the help of the print services staff at my office, cropped the ad and enlarged the relevant part to a full 8 ½” x 11”.
and then i faxed it to b.
it was an ad for the A-OK Body Shop.
there was no cover sheet. i knew he’d know who it was from.
*yeah, i know that the term "meat gazer" is sometimes used to refer to a guy who checks out other guys' packages. this is different. no, i don't know why they chose this particular term. but i do know this was not a game involving looking at guys' packages. unless i totally misunderstood the rules or something. anyway, just thought i'd point that out.
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