#18 (Continued) - Females Sighted Bringing Their Own Full-Size Pillows On Planes, By Race

Faithful reader Chappy nailed this one!

White chick. Jet Blue 93 Oakland to JFK.

Pics or it didn't happen, you say? No problemo. Way to go Chappy!

Overall Total:
White: 28
Other: 2 (Latina, black)

If you're a new reader and are not familiar with our running tally of Females Sighted Bringing Their Own Full-Size Pillows On Planes, By Race, I suggest you trace the history of the search here, here and here.

(If you sight an own-pillow carrier (OPC,) please email [email protected] with your tally, the race of the OPC or OPCs, and your route. Alternately, you may simply add the same information in the comments section below.)

#84 - A Call To Alms

On the heels of my sock unification successes, I have now decided to try to unify the rest of my clothing. I'm already a dedicated Levi's 569 guy. I buy them in all available colors and washes. We've also spoken previously about my shorts. But now I'm going to attempt the impossible: Shirt Unification.

Shirts, of course, are the hardest article of clothing to unify as you need different kinds of shirts for different occasions. It would be pure folly to try to go with just one shirt model for the rest of my life, but I think it should be possible to wear one kind of shirt almost all the time, and that shirt will be this one, black, XL.

For those of you who don't remember, I recently wrote this story for the Alternative Clothing Company, a feel good manufacturer of heavenly, organic cotton garments. Since there is no more money left in the world, I was paid for this piece of writing in clothing. We got a box of Alternative apparel containing numerous yummy things for me, the wife, and both kids. I must say, money is nice, but so is walking around knowing that your whole family is clad in the world's best, sustainable, fair trade, ultra-high grade Peruvian pimo cotton.

Are you an artist or craftsman who's recently worked for barter? Please let me know about it at [email protected].

Trivia Answer:
Why is Charlie Brown bald?
Charlie Brown is bald because his father is a barber and when Charlie Brown feels sad, which is most of the time, he goes in for a haircut to cheer himself up. You heard it here!

#83 - POP QUIZ!

Let's play a guessing game. Take a look at the items above and choose the correct answer from the list below.

What are these things? Are they...

A. $.55, three memory cards and a paper clip?
B. Some of the things that usually sit in a little dish by the base of my computer?
C. The things from the little dish at the base of my computer that are flat enough and small enough for my son to jam into my computer's DVD drive?
D. All of the above.

If you answered D. All of the above, congratulations. Yes, these are the things that I spent the morning fishing out of my DVD drive, which, miraculously, and probably temporarily, still functions. And in case you were wondering, the best tool for fishing $.55, three memory cards and paper clip out of a DVD drive is not, as you might initially have thought, a baseball glove restringing tool, it is, rather, a fondue fork. Which just goes to show that fondue is not only delicious, it's useful too!

Answer to last week's trivia question: Joe Shlobotnick was Charlie Brown's favorite baseball player.

New Question: Why is Charlie Brown bald?

#82 - Sock Unification and Clothing Culling Missions Accomplished

Well! Isn’t this an exciting day! Not only did the Rangers and Yankees win last night, not only does the New Yankee Stadium open today, not only are freakin’ pirates (of the non-baseball variety) making a comeback, but I have finally completed my long-anticipated sock unification and clothing culling projects!

Since most of you won’t have been to my house, I will let you in on one of its most amazing features: the upstairs closet where I keep my clothing contains a localized Light Devouring Black Hole that cannot be illuminated by any earthly means. (No. If you’re wondering, the real estate listing did not read 4br., 2bth., LDBH, close to shopping.)

Since seeing one’s clothing is an indispensable step in the process of getting dressed, I have tried various means of penetrating the gloom in my closet: I’ve employed camp lanterns, battery-powered stick-on light bulbs, battery-powered screw-in lighting strips, common flashlights, fluorescent flashlights, penlights and miner-style headlamps. None of them even scratched the surface of the unearthly darkness. In order to see anything in there before the light is sucked into the Black Hole’s unquenchable maw, I have to wear a strap on headlamp and then augment that with a hand held flashlight. And even then I can only dimly make out about three-square inches of fabric before 98% of my candlepower is slurped up by the black hole.

My Light Devouring Black Hole is, admittedly, a small one, and I suppose if I wanted to dedicate the entire hallway to beating back the blackness, I could hook up one of those freestanding lighting rigs they use to work on highways at night, but since I haven’t quite wanted to go that far, I’ve been using a really stupid workaround—keeping my clothing in my office.

I didn’t initially intend to keep everything in my office. But my office is right across the hallway from the Light Devouring Black Hole in my closet, so what I used to do was reach into the swirling void and wrest forth items I thought I might want to wear. I’d then bring them into the office to look at what I’d fished out and see if it appealed to me. Of course, donning a full portable illumination rig as only the first step in getting dressed got old pretty fast, so eventually I gave up and just kept my clothing in my office.

At first, it was just the A Team items; my fave jeans, a few go-to T shirts, a pair of shorts… But as occasions called for increased wardrobe flexibility, more and more garments migrated away from the Black Hole and took up permanent residence in the office. These stacks, and piles and lumps of clothing eventually took on a character of their own: That of a lurking, admonishing testament to everything I hate about myself.

I used to walk into the office, look at the piles of crap, and think, “Why the hell don’t you do something about that? That’s atrocious.”

And then I wouldn’t.

People use to come into the office and say, “Wow! You hired an artist to create a life-size representation of your personal failings and install it right where you work! It’s amazingly accurate, but… why?”

I didn't know.

By far the peskiest elements of these Shame Mounds were socks. It’s common comedy fodder to observe that socks have a way of going missing and leaving their owners with incomplete sets, but I am somehow immune to this phenomenon. To the contrary, I believe that I still have every sock I’ve ever owned and that they’re all floating around in the blackness of my closet howling and wailing and searching for their mates. Going into the Black Hole looking for socks was a project that took at least 20 minutes. I'd reach in there, pull out a GoBots sock from 1986, and think, "Hey! I remember this guy!" But finding his fellow was a near impossibility.

Even when I “solved” the sock illumination problem by bunging all my socks into a cardboard box and keeping that in the office, the socks still haunted me. It took almost as much time to find a matching pair as it had in the Black Hole, plus, now my sock collection was always there, in my face, mocking me.

Well, friends, today I'm proud to say that period of my life has come to an end. Today, not only did I place into storage well-nigh half my clothing, but I also threw out every non-sport specific sock I owned and replaced them with three models: Puma ankle socks in gray and black, and a dozen black gold toes. Until further notice, I will only be wearing these three models of sock and I will not deviate from this narrow spectrum. If I am to become known as That Guy Who Only Wears Three Kinds of Socks, so be it, I have dwelt overlong in a lightless world, and I’m not going back.

Uh, no. I didn't finish my taxes. Why?

#81 - Ditch the Donkey

Tomorrow is one of those weird surprise election days around here that only retirees and serious political junkies know about. You know those kind of "pop" elections where you vote for judges and sheriffs and the vice-comptroller and things like that.

Sometimes, when I'm really feeling civic, I'll do some research about the people running for these offices, but to be honest, I usually just base my selections on lawn signs. If you see a Franklin For Library Chancellor sign on a lawn where there's an aging Obama sign, you're probably good to go. If you see a Libbey for School Superintendent sign on a lawn where there's a NASCAR flag flying, well, F you Libbey! I hate you. Whoever you are.

Sometimes I've tried to do some research before voting in one of these lesser elections and been unable to find any info about the candidates. What I usually do then is either leave the voting to people who actually care, or I'll vote for the candidate with the least white douchebag sounding name. So, if Maria Sanchez is squaring off against Douglas Thomas, well, "!Adios Senor Thomas!"

The real reason I'm writing this however is because as I was checking out lawn signs today I had a great idea which I want to donate to the Democratic party. I'm just going to leave it up here and assume that eventually it will be found and implemented.

Okay, here goes: Every election we all wonder how the Repubs have convinced so many lower income people to vote against their own interests. And I believe the answer to this question is that the Republicans have succeeded in painting the Democrats as kind of "gay." In a very schoolyard way, they've disseminated this feeling that the more left-leaning you are, the "gayer" you are. Sort of like the GOP had people stand outside polling places whispering "homovotedemocrat" to everyone on their way in, and it actually worked on a lot of folks.

My solution to this problem is not a sure-fire cureall, but I do believe it would alleviate a lot of the pressure. Basically, the idea is this: Ditch the donkey as the mascot/logo thing and replace it with a phoenix.

I mean, honestly, no one even knows why that thing has to be a donkey anyway right? Sure, you could look it up, but if one day Obama came out and manfully announced the donkey was being replaced by a badass phoenix (possibly on a Harley,) would anyone miss the donkey? Of course not. They'd be too swept up in the awesomeness! And a really great side benefit of replacing the donkey with a phoenix would be that if the Repubs tried to change the elephant, they'd totally look like copycats!

Just picture when the next election rolls around and every time the Republicans and Democrats are represented graphically, it looks like this:

Who's the "gay" party now, bitches?