Drunken Photo Shoots

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*Click *Click*Click

The shutter on the Nikon went off as the back patio of the bar. The flash poured on the two while the rest of the group was oblivious around them.

“Just one more, this time a little closer together,” the camera woman said. She was excited to use her camera on someone other than her husband and dog for a change– a statement she made many times throughout the night.

The redhead grabbed me closer while I pretended this was the Royal Wedding shoot. I stared at her and made jokes that I looked like blonde Prince Henry with less hair.

“So you’re prince William?”

I glared at her and moved her chin.

“Stop moving my face.” she said through her grin.

“Stop trying to pose! We need to make this authentic for the readers of Teen People.” I said.

She looked down and laughed into my chest. The camera girl worked ferociously.

“Oh my god you guys! this is too cute! I’m feeling something here between you two!”

I knew just what she meant. I felt it too. I felt it the first time I walked into their party that afternoon and greeted my friend’s redheaded sister. The last time I saw her she was drunk and asking about this girl I was seeing. That was five years ago. She had outgrown her parent’s divorce issues, or so I thought.

It’s always a weird feeling when someone likes you. Your gut takes a hold of you, knowing you have this power over someone. In the past, it gave me a rush and I’d want to reciprocate. Now it happens more often, and it makes me wonder. Is this a curse? What do I want? When am I going to feel this way about someone else?

*Click*Click*Click

The redhead looked back up in my eyes. I knew that look, but ignored it. We posed in more ridiculous ways, ending on a vogue. The Camera girl and the redhead consulted among the pictures. I excused myself and went to the bathroom.

“Hurry back!” the redhead yelled.

“Ya! Hurry! You have to see these pictures! They’re soooo cute!” The camera girl said.

I walked into the bar, past the rows of empty stools. Typical for a Sunday night. The bathroom was dimly lit, yet I still make out my face in between the rust spots in the mirror. I splashed cold water on my face and took a deep breath.

Fuck.

 

I Wrote a Piece for McSweeny’s

I wrote a piece for McSweeny’s. It was about an argument I had about this guy’s laptop bag.

Or according to him it was an “Attache”.

Not a laptop bag, even though the leather bound container was only stuffed with one electronic item.

I guess when you pay over $150.00 dollars for a bag, you need to call it something else to remind yourself you didn’t just do that. As a guy who once made a $400.00 drunken ray-light eye protection purchase, I can respect that.

But at the same time, I don’t have the fucking urge to correct someone when they give me a complement. I can’t choose that someone digs my scuffed up Aldo boots I bought at Ross’s but not my new shirt that totally acknowledges the fact I step foot in the gym.

You don’t hear me stop someone mid-sentence:

“Wow, I really like your–”

“Astute observational humor. I know me too!”

I don’t do that.

Anyways, I was in the middle of typing this monster out on wps–the poor man’s Word Processor– when I read a section of the requirements of submission. Embedded is a hyperlink titled “It wouldn’t hurt to read this” explaining how to write a humorous piece.

Something about this bothered me.

It was like Lean Manufacturing meets Creative writing. It was literally bottling up the formula for humor. I’m surprised no one tried to sell it for ten easy payments of $19.99.

I expect this from someone teaching an 18 year old how to get laid, but not McSweeny’s. I understand upping the bar of your submissions, sure. Editors get a lot of shit. I know this, because I send out a lot of it myself. But you’ll never get any feeling out of a process. Worst of all, a reader knows when a writer is going through the motions.

I feel like to get published by McSweeny’s, I would bitch about Trump like everyone else. It would follow the exact formula outlined about how humor pieces should be written. Some fat dude on would tweet that “I won the internet”, like that is a measurable merit badge I can impress some rando girl four Vodka Sprites deep about, yet somehow I pull it off.

The next day, I would wake up in a strange bed, hangover, and a pounding sense of shame. I’d try to get a pick me up by staring at my published article, only to find it lower on the main page. Above my words of glory, someone would post a different piece, yet the same outcome.

The world keeps spinning.

McSweeny’s keeps publishing.

And I wasted one of my precious 10 minutes of fame, on a girl who thought if she joined the cross country team at DePaul, she would “so be skiing all day”. Sounds like we’re both in for a rude awaking.

…So long story short, I submitted, fingers crossed.

If Tinder Profiles Were More Than 500 Characters: Pt. 3

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Part 1 Part 2

You:

-Hold my hair back when I puke

-Gives honest thoughts on my writing

-Are up to blow off work one Thursday to go to Navy Pier but happen to run into your boss when drunk walking down the boardwalk. You duck behind a Red Eye paper dispenser while I walk over to distract him, kind of like Julia Styles in 10 Things I Hate About You, only I keep my clothes on but would flash as a last resort.

-Thinks swing dancing in New Orleans is one hell of a vacation

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I:

-Can flip eggs without a spatula

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Pretty fair trade if I don’t say so myself.