Thursday, September 10, 2009

25 Random Facts About Me

1. When I was a senior in high school, I entered a scholarship essay contest for the Tennessee Ready-Mixed Concrete Association (TRMCA on tha' streets). The requirement was that I write about how concrete has changed our nation's infrastructure in general and my life in particular. It took me about two weeks and I even ended the paper with a ready-made slogan: "Concrete: A Firm Foundation for America's Future". As I placed the essay in the mail, I was already planning out the inevitable book tour / university lecture circuit that was sure to follow this literary gem. A month or so passed and I received a copy of the prestigious (and criminally under-circulated) TRMCA magazine. As I opened the front cover, I mentally prepared myself for the accolades that were sure to be showered upon me; but when I got to the essay section I discovered that I had been out-foxed by a girl! As I began to read her essay, my indignation melted beneath the waves of the biggest pant-load of crap ever put on paper. Make no mistake my friends: this girl was a pro. She even wrote about how as a young girl growing up on the wrong side of the tracks she used to sit on the roof of her parents house and gaze up at the concrete overpass that crowned her neighborhood; and she realized that if this overpass could sustain all that weight, she too could rise above her own circumstances and utilize her God-given talents. I am not sure, but I suspect she is already in negotiations with the Hallmark Channel for the movie rights. At any rate, I did receive a consolation prize in the form of a fluorescent green backpack which sported the outline of a concrete truck and a certificate of achievement (which I still have).

2. My coworkers thought that I was Mormon for the better part of a year because I did not drink caffeinated beverages and “seemed really nice”.

3. The first conversation I ever had with my wife was when we were both working in the mall and I suavely attempted to “drop some game” on her while the guy she was currently dating happened to be standing in line directly behind me. She acted somewhat indifferent to my amorous advances which I mistakenly believed was due to my imitation Calvin Klein cologne (thank you Kmart). She later explained to me that I had put her in a rather difficult position by hitting on her in front of her current squeeze.

4. When I was 11, I yelled at my grandfather in front of a whole group of people at a Boy Scout meeting that he was kind enough to attend with me. He died of cancer shortly thereafter and I never really told him how sorry I was. It haunts me to this day.

5. I sometime wake up with the opening measures of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” in my head and it makes me feel ashamed. It is in my head right now……. It cannot be stopped…… Steve Perry has a huge nose……

6. In high school I was walking a date out to her car while simultaneously suppressing a rather ferocious case of gas when my defenses broke down and I let one “rip” as they say. In desperation, I blamed the rather loud flatulence on my nearby sleeping dog. I have since consoled myself by believing that she bought the story, but I have never known for sure…

7. I was once late for work because I became engrossed in the E! True Hollywood Story of “Home Improvement”. May my children forgive me.

8. Arkansas is my least favorite state for several reasons: They spent thousands of taxpayer dollars to put up signs that state “Road May Become Dangerous If Underwater” / They decided to use “Access Roads” in lieu of an actual interstate infrastructure / and all of their interstate rest areas are adorned with stainless steel urinals and toilets which makes me feel like I am filming an episode of “Scared Straight” every time that I have to pee.

9. I tend to eat based on the texture of foods. For example: I love applesauce, but will not eat an apple / I love orange juice, but will not eat an orange etc….

10. I have absolutely horrible vision and without glasses or contacts I could not recognize a person even at arm’s length from my face. It has been this way since elementary school and my mom still has a picture of me wearing my ladies-pleasin’ Neil Sedaka glasses.

11. I have the ability to remember some pretty complex numbers (I have my driver’s license number, all my bank account numbers, product keys for software programs all memorized) yet I cannot remember dates of any kind such as birthdays, anniversaries, etc..

12. As a teenager I had fairly bad acne which was joining forces with my bad vision and crooked teeth to make me quite the catch. In order to remedy this, I convinced my mother to get me a prescription for Accutane because some friends had taken it and the results gave them the complexion of a 14 year-old Greek boy. Unfortunately, the Accutane had no effect on my acne but did cause the following side effects: I gained 15 pounds in my face and was subsequently known as “Cabbage Patch Boy” / I became quite overdramatic and when my parents would ask me how my day was I would respond with some variation of “Just let me live my life! You don’t understand!” / I was overtaken by an insatiable lust for generic Oreo cookies (this may have been a contributing factor the previously mentioned Fat-Head Syndrome).

13. My wife had dramatic oral surgery about 2 months after our first date and was completely wired shut for weeks. Several times I fed her with a syringe while she was in the hospital.

14. When we were both in high school, my sister and I got into the most brutal fight of our lives over her spending my change from pumping gas on a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos and a 20oz Coke. We almost broke the French Doors in my parent’s house.

15. My other grandfather helped liberate the Buchenwald Concentration camp in World War II and took several pictures of the bodies stacked in ditches “like cordwood”. He kept these pictures in a trunk to remind him of the horror of the Holocaust. When he was dying, someone wrote an editorial into the local paper stating that the Holocaust was a myth. After reading this my grandfather was so incensed, that he drove to the newspaper offices to get the photos published. They ended up doing a rather lengthy story on his experience at Buchenwald. Unfortunately, he died before I was born.

16. I have two nicknames: Tay-Tay and Strings (I do not count, “Hey Stupid!”)

17. I despise Paul Walker (the guy from Fast and the Furious that is NOT Vin Diesel) and rented Flags of our Fathers just because I heard that he died in it. I was not disappointed.

18. If I ever win the lottery I plan to open my own movie theater and one of the snacks I will sell is a fried-okra / sweet tea combo.

19. My first job was as a dish sanitation engineer at the Western Sizzlin. It was every bit as prestigious as it sounds.

20. I eat cereal almost every day, but only for a pre-bed snack. Favorites include Frosted Flakes, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, and Honey Bunches of Oats. (Smoke on that Kashi Go-Lean!)

21. One of my greatest pet-peeves is when wire clothes hangers get tangled together. If I ever commit a homicide, chances are that it will be “laundry-duty-induced”.

22. The one and only massage I have ever received was from a rather salty senior-citizen named Bert at the Arlington Hotel Day Spa. This message was the culmination of a day of pampering which including having some guy named Derrick whip off my towel and ease me into a genital-scorching mineral bath. I declined his offer to “sponge me off” and fear I will never be able to look my offspring in the eye.

23. If it was socially acceptable, I would wear pajama pants and a t-shirt to work every day.

24. I am terrible at math, which is somewhat embarrassing considering my father is a brilliant CPA.

25. It really bothers me when I see people spend extra money to purchase name-brand charcoal starter fluid. It either will or won’t ignite, there is not much expectation of performance after that.


  1. You are crazy! I love you and all your memories!

  2. Great writing. Let the words continue to flow !

  3. I like #18. Will you take a credit card @ your theater? lol

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