Hecklers and Other People With Stressful Day Jobs

spring-day-united-states-of-shockI love hecklers, especially the mean ones. I suppose they remind me of my mother. The only difference is I know I can eventually win the love of the heckler.

Usually, the heckles I get are not mean in nature. They are most likely pieces of advice from a lovely soul with an excruciatingly stressful day-job that warrants them being so drunk their face slacks against their skull like a dilapidated house.

The other night at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival,

I was talking about Rule 34 to a room of 100 people. (The idea that if something exists, there is a fetish and/or porn of it.) when a slack-faced woman in her early fifties shouted, “I am a solicitor that represents people with brain injuries and I’ll have you know that there are 134 websites dedicated to helping people with disabilities have sex!” I couldn’t be mean to her because the heckle was genuinely useful information. Her very embarrassed daughter was with her and I got her to promise to keep her quiet and all was well.

The whole incident reminded me of all the people I’ve met through the years that work with the physically and mentally disabled on a day-to-day basis. All of them are amazing, having a tremendous capacity to care for others.  One thing I’ve noticed about people is that if a person is extraordinarily kind, understanding, or giving, the door swings equally the other way. They are just as capable of being equally rude, selfish, mean and unhinged. This can manifest itself in unguarded moments. When they are “blowing off steam” as it were.

Several years ago, I went to Las Vegas with my dad. It really is the closest thing to Tokyo America has. Everywhere you look there are bright lights, smooth sidewalks, hookers and elderly people. We went to see a live band play on Fremont Street. There were maybe about 70 tourists and locals dancing in the streets when one woman who looked to be in her mid-30s wearing a tight red dress started twirling around, pulling her dress down around her waist and not only did her ample breasts popped out, they suffered from whiplash. She seemed to think she was in New Orleans collecting beads that didn’t exist. She twirled towards me and I did my best to stay out of her way. She looked right into my eyes as I tried to not stare at her bruised breasts. She clocked the look on my face as judgement, touched my shoulder and said in the most earnest voice possible, “You have no idea what kind of stress I’m under. I work with children who have Down Syndrome!”

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

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Mawwage Brings Us Twogether Today….

spring-day-united-states-of-shockInternational relationships need all the help they can get to survive. Everyone has expectations that are connected to you country and culture we don’t even realize they have until it’s too late. That’s why I do my best to help out whenever I can.

 For example, a Canadian friend living in Japan with his Japanese wife complained that his wife had just told him that now they had had all the children they were going to have. They would not be having any more sex. He told me, “I love my wife but sex is more important than anything to me.” I said, “Bullshit! If that were true, you never wold have become a professional juggler!”

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His wife’s attitude and decision to not have sex ever again with a spouse after having children, and sometimes before, is not uncommon with women and men. It’s that way because the definition of marriage and what’s expected of it in Japan is worlds away from what people in the West think and expect it to be. This often comes as a nasty surprise to Westerners in Japan with Japanese spouses and the surprise comes well after legal papers have been signed and the children have been had. 

One year at the festival. I met a Welsh man that lived in Japan. He was at the festival on his honeymoon. When I found out his wife was Japanese I said, “Let me talk to her. “ I ask her, “Do you love your husband?” She said, “Yes.” “Do you want to have a long and happy marriage?” “Of course.”  “Then learn how to like sex because your husband is not Japanese. He’s Welsh. He wants to have sex with you until you die, and probably after.”

Don’t even get me started on attitudes regarding the act of sex itself in Japan. When I’m back in the States, white American men who think I’m part Japanese (because I’m squinty and they’re racist) but won’t come out and say it, will, in an effort to be “culturally sensitive” will pepper their conversation with Japanese words they think they know, “Sushi, Manga, bukkaki” That last of which, by the way, is not a word you want to be throwing around at dinner. It puts people off their salad dressing. Anyway, these men will eventually pull me aside and ask, “Why is Japanese porn so rapey?” I sit them down with my university degree in Japanese language and literature to explain to them that culturally and historically speaking, portraying a Japanese woman enjoying herself while having sex would just be fictional.

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

Why Facebook Fights Are the Best

spring-day-united-states-of-shockIt is safe to say we are all on the internet too much. I recently celebrated not surfing the internet on my smartphone for a whole two hours by binge watching the latest season of Orange is the New Black on Netflix. I celebrated not being on the internet for a few hours by getting on the internet for a whole day. Doh!

With all it’s faults, the internet and social media have improved one very important interaction—debate.

A lot of Americans are absolutely terrible at debate while we all excel at screaming. I knew America was in trouble when the exclamation point became acceptable in business emails. (Here in the U.K. nearly every business email I get ends with an “x” and it makes me cringe every single time unless I know that person is gay because then I know it’s an air kiss.)

Americans are historically bad at debate simply because our country is so big we’ve never had to be good at it. Don’t like your neighbor’s political views? Stay inside your massive home or move your entire family further into the countryside. If you don’t like what your partner has to say, think or feel, just go to a different side of your house where it is entirely possible to not see each other for days.

People in big cities like New York, Boston and Chicago do slightly better with confrontation due to limited space and shitty weather but do not often excel in offering logical arguments or case building. All too often, the most persistent gets what they want simply because they are willing to be as annoying as herpes.

People in America like to have practice arguments with people who completely agree with them. These practice arguments are easy to spot. They usually start with a finger wag and a sentence that starts out with, “And if you think…” and ends with, ” Then you’ve got another thing coming!” directed at a close friend or family member who agrees with them completely. Of course, it is almost never a sound argument. It is more likely a rant taken for a victory lap in an empty stadium.

In the past, if you got into a spoken argument with anyone  about politics, religion, or even a movie, people just ended up shouting how they really feel and how anyone that doesn’t feel the exact same way is a heartless piece of shit. This might happen in front of people, but more often it is reenacted in the car on their way home from church.

chess gameThe rules of debate have not really been taught and so meaningful discussion is wasted, like playing chess with someone that doesn’t realize when they’ve lost and continue to move pieces around the board convinced that they’ve still got a chance at winning since they still have pieces on the table even though their queen is long gone. When their opponent leaves the table after winning the game, guess who thinks they’ve won because there are the last to get up from the table?

I’m from Kansas City , an area where the American Civil War started and continued to fight a year or more after it was over because they didn’t want to believe it was over. It’s a fact that makes me laugh and cry at the same time. The movie “Ride With the Devil”  touches on it and it has two of my favorite lines in cinema. “Have you ever been with a woman before?” Answer, “I have killed ten men.”

Facebook and other social media sites have made accountability for one’s words possible. Arguments can be made with researched articles and holes in logic can be pointed out (along with spelling and punctuation mistakes) Finally making it possible to know exactly how stupid your friends are and that’s ok. Everyone is stupid. The problem is when people insist on staying stupid. Social media gives us the chance to look back and see exactly what we wrote and how stupid we were, Plus, we have the technological tools to become less of a tool.

Sure, we risk being called a troll for giving our two cents on a post and we may even be threatened. ( Internet trolls have told me that I’m a horrible bitch that deserves to die but in all honesty, it’s nice to hear from Mom now and again.)

I’ve been getting in a lot of Facebook fights recently and I’m glad. I feel like I know my friends and family better than I ever have and genuinely think our relationships are better for it. Sure, I’ve deleted some “friends”  and have blocked others who are so far up their own ass that I’m not going to stick around to watch them turn inside out. Some people exist to waste time but they aren’t going to waste mine. That is what YouTube and Instagram are for.

I am grateful for the chance to have meaningful discussions with friends and family that simply wasn’t possible before.

Now when a friend insists Biblical Paul’s “thorn in the flesh” was impotency because “Why else wouldn’t he say what it was?” I can now show other people that I’m not crazy, I’m just surrounded by stupid and that helps me breathe a little easier.

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

When A Man Feminist Screams at A Woman

spring-day-united-states-of-shockThe London Pride Parade was this past Saturday. It was the second Pride parade I’ve been to. Last year, I went to the New York Pride Parade. Both parades reminded me of the Electric Parade in Disneyland, the same amount of color with more skin, sweat and penises.

It was very different from what I had expected. My previous and only experience of Pride was news footage and scenes from Madonna’s “Truth or Dare” that focused on the fight for recognition and equality. Sassy and succinct suggestions to politicians for change were the focus of those clips. I saw some of that at the parade but there were so many floats backed by mainstream corporations, it’s hard not to feel like the gay community has already won on some level. When banks, real estate and car companies are passing out rainbow flags with their logo on them, you can tell, truly supportive or not, they are eager to cash in on same-sex DINK couples. (Double income no kids).

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I was once asked by a life coach where I saw myself in 20 years. My genuine first thought was, “I want to be the rescue animal of two rich gay married men.” That is a sweet life.

The Woman’s March earlier this year had the protest vibe I was expecting from the Pride Parade. That is the difference between a parade and a march I suppose. Parades have floats, balloons, music, dancing, face-paint and glitter, SO MUCH GLITTER. Marches have anger, signs, chants and warpaint.

Parades are about celebration. Marches are about fighting for change.

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The Women’s March in New York, was the first protest I and many other women had ever been to. It was where I learned ” Woohoo!” means, “We are done with that particular chant” as letting a chant trail off sort of implies the battle’s been lost.

 

There were a lot more men at the Women’s march than I had expected. A lot of them were fathers of young girls which did not surprise me. I did not expect all the hipster men who called themselves feminists that showed up.

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I have to admit I am suspicious of any man that calls himself a feminist. It’s not that I don’t believe men can’t be feminists, some are. It’s just I have always had a soft spot in my heart for blatant misogynists. I think there are men and women who have need a very rigid definition of male and female roles as they desperately want to be recognized for the work they are not doing. Blatant misogynists open doors for me and offer to carry my groceries.  Male feminist millennials are all too often all to happy for my capable ass to pick up their check and not help me with the door. I am, of course, talking about my very superficial level of interaction with misogynists.

I hate to be in a room full of them, where I feel the kiss and hug greeting expected by male acquaintances and perfect strangers is a preemptive apology for not allowing me to speak in group conversations dominated by men the rest of the night.

Most of the march, there was one male feminist standing next to me, complete with a leather messenger bag and protest pins, who struck me as a march enthusiast of any lefty cause. Judging from his pins, the women’s march seemed to be an extension of his animal rights activism. He was 6’2” and towered over me as we made our way past Grand Central Station. He was pumped, very confident and not a little aggressive in his chants. To my ear, it seemed more of a mating call than a cry for change. Alone, he seemed to be scanning the crowd for an Ani Defranco wannabe that just realized how much she had missed dick to jump into his arms and straddle his progressive ass.

The section of the crowd I was in was on the quiet side. Four small groups of women tentatively started chanting, “My Body! My Choice!,”  once they realized they didn’t have to wait for a chant to make it’s way back from the front. I joined in.  The 6’2” male feminist standing next to me got excited. He wanted to join in but couldn’t. Instead, in the interim, he screamed, “HER BODY! HER CHOICE!” as he pointed down at me in what could only be described as a menacing and threatening manner. I cowered under his finger, frightened by his volume and misdirected rage.

I wanted to say to him, “ I appreciate your enthusiasm in fighting for my rights. I’d just appreciate it, if you did it in a way that didn’t remind me of my rape.” (Just to be clear, I haven’t been raped. It’s just that incest and molestation just doesn’t have quite the same punch to it.)

When Citibank and Barclays start passing out pap smear sticks and birth control pills with their logos on them is when we will know women have won on some level.

Wonder Woman Never Got me in Trouble, She-Ra Did

spring-day-united-states-of-shockGrowing up, I was a huge Wonder Woman fan though I never read the comic books. (To be honest, comic books have always made me motion sick and stressed out. I never know what order the boxes are meant to be read.) I had the origin storybook “Wonder Woman in Cheetah on the Prowl” that came with a cassette tape to read me the story instead of my full-time working parents. Looking back, the pictures in that book permanently shaped what I thought a beautiful woman looked like. I don’t think I’ll ever consider myself beautiful until I have jet black hair so dark there are thick stripes of blue hair bouncing around my face.

As a small child, I had Wonder Woman Underoos. ( When you watch the comercial, notice how when they turn around, the boy’s costumes are complete while Woner Woman is a party in the front and tighty whites and tank in the back, like she forgot to turn around during the full body superhero spray tan.) It was underwear that looked enough like the American flag to make me feel guilty about getting them dirty. If it was shameful to let an American flag touch the ground, what was I supposed to feel after I left skid marks in one? I had glued a hook to to hold my “lasso of truth” which was what I called my trusty neon pink jump rope that I would accidentally whipped myself
with on a regular basis and the truth hurt a lot.

I loved the movie. I was surprised by the Washington Times Headline,”‘Wonder Woman Surpasses ‘Batman VS Superman’ at the Box Office.” Since when is “Good Movie Makes More Money Than Ishtar” news? It was no Dark Knight, but it was far better than the Avenger’s movies for one big reason. Wonder Woman falls for a decent guy. Sure she could have done better. Most female characters could do way better than the ones they end up with because superhero scripts are written with the male gaze and fragile nerd ego in mind. The Black Widow falling in love with the Hulk did my head in. I’m sure she’s had a checkered past, but the whole story line implies strong women will and should end up with a guy with severe anger management/alcohol issues since they are the only ones equipped to handle them. Horseshit.

Speaking of strong women involved with alcoholic, angry men. Robyn Wright was AMAZEBALLS in the movie, going into battle with a smirk on her face as if to say, ” You think you know how to fight?! I lived with Sean Penn for 13 years, motherfucker!” Her role as the General is remeniscent of Tina Turner’s Aunt Entity in Mad Max.
(I’m a huge fan of Wright as Claire Underwood in “House of Cards”, too. I’m also convinced Teresa May is Claire Underwood’s Dorian Grey Portrait.)

(Am I wrong?)

I was so happy that this Wonder Woman was truly strong and agile. Linda Carter’s Wonder Woman spun around like she had vertigo and only ran in slow motion like Pamela Anderson on the beach. The bottom half of Carter’s lingerie-inspired Wonder Woman costume was so wide from the back, the stars on her ass looked like the Milky Way. The camera man was well aware of this as every time he had to shoot her from behind, either the camera filmed it from across the street or she was inexplicably standing in the middle of a well manicured bush in Washington D.C., not an easy feat.

Gal Godot’s Wonder Woman isn’t impossibly thin, nor does she look like a bodybuilder. She is not ridiculously pale, nor does she sound American. Her closeup shots don’t resemble porn. (Go back and watch “Laura Croft:Tomb Raider” and see if you can find a close up of Angelina Jolie without her mouth open. You can’t.)

Wonder Woman never got me in trouble as a small child, probably because she never had a sword when I was little. If she had, she would have gotten me into big trouble the way She-Ra did. She-Ra, superhero’s He-Man’s twin sister, thrusted a sword in the sky to gain power. One hot summer day, (not my sister) I thrusted my sword (a stick) into the air and hitting our living room’s massive ceiling fan string that then wrapped itself up into the ceiling fan motor. I heard a crunchy wheezing as the fan blades continued to spin while the motor chewed through the chain. It made the sound helicopter propellers do when they are shot down in Rambo movies. I instinctively took a step backwards as I heard a whoosh as the ceiling fan came crashing down from the upside down Noah’s arc that was our ceiling.
Unbeknownst to me, my dad had come into the living from mowing the yard and had silently witnessed the whole thing. I looked at him, jumped over the couch and ran into my bedroom, slamming the door behind me. I may have wanted to be She-Ra or Wonder Woman, but in real life, I resembled the Roadrunner more.
I was grounded for several weeks. Not because I’d done anything wrong but because my parents wanted to keep me from challenging other household appliances to the death.

The Wonder Woman movie may not be the best of it’s genre but it’s a damn good first run that I can’t wait to see more of.

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

Don’t Go To North Korea Unless You Want To Die And Don’t Mind Others Being Murdered

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There is a reason why worldwide whimsical leisure travel is associated with one of the seven deadly sins. Wanderlust can get you killed.

Facebook is where I road test a lot of jokes and I upset people when I wondered out loud if the American university student tortured and killed (for allegedly stealing a propaganda poster) in North Korea would win a Darwin Award. The Darwin Awards honor those who accidentally improve the human genome by removing themselves from the human race. Previous honorees include a man in a wheelchair who, after an elevator closed on him, ran into the elevator doors three times before breaking through and plunging down the shaft to his death.) I want to be clear that I do not think the university student should win a Darwin Award, just nominated for one. I don’t think he would mind since he liked collecting trophies.

Long and the short of it is, offensive or not, it opened a conversation that needs to be had about international travel in general and North Korea specifically.

The student’s death was a horrible tragedy he did not deserve. I do not believe that he is guilty of stealing the propaganda poster. I believe he followed all of the rules and regulations to the best of his ability. However, this is not a baby getting eaten by an alligator at Disneyland type tragedy. This is the equivalent of going bungee jumping in Nazi Germany or Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge regime and being detained because an officer doesn’t like your face. Is it justified? Absolutely not. Is it consistent of the totalitarian regime that routinely tortures and kills it’s own people? You bettcha. In fact, this university student was given some medical care, plus, the regime did not imprison two other generations of the university student’s family, as is usual in North Korea. This could be considered special treatment compared to the nameless and countless victims under this regime. It wasn’t long ago the dictator had his uncle, brother and mistress killed. He also had his defense chief executed for falling asleep during a military exercise.

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I blame movies like Team America: World Police and The Interview for satirizing a country they didn’t fully understand to an audience that doesn’t really understand what kind of terror and danger North Koreans live under every single day. Both movies did a fantastic job of making the leaders of North Korea seem vain, petty and harmless, at least to Americans. Unfortunately, he is only two of those three things to people in North Korea. I bet the Average American doesn’t know 80 people were executed in 2013 for offenses such as drinking alcohol, watching T.V., playing music, communicating with the outside world, having Western media, complaining about a dead spouse, mourning insincerely or going online.

North Korea has always been the butt of jokes for as long as I can remember. When the internet was in it’s toddler years, images of primary school age children playing xylophones like their life depended on it were hysterical until I found out these children’s lives actually did depend on their performance. A friend of mine who visited North Korea talked about watching a circus with no safety equipment for the trapeze artists. The stadium circus floor was kept dark so that if an entertainer were to fall to their death, the show would go on. When things go wrong on the tour, North Korean tour guides may lose their lives as well as their jobs.

One person very angry about my joke argued “The university student was an adventurer!” An adventure, by definition, is a hazardous undertaking with an uncertain outcome. He had an adventure alright, a disastrous adventure that was 100% avoidable. I think it’s easy to forget that safe travel is a historically recent development that should not be taken lightly.

Had the university student been in the country for humanitarian reasons, I would have more sympathy as the student would have been more informed and trained about how horrible life is in that secluded and impoverished country. He would know that any money spent there as a tourist, would most likely be spent on their nuclear program or in a way that would oppress and torture it’s people even more. 

I’ve met people who want to go to North Korea to “see the crazies”. The North Koreans citizens are not crazy. They are under an oppressive totalitarian regime, struggling to survive. If you go there and get detained, don’t be surprised when you can’t negotiate with the crazy regime.

I don’t know why Dennis Rodman is in North Korea unless he thinks he is hanging out with Psy. Whatever friendship he has with the leader there, it is on very shaky ground.

I suppose having lived in Japan for 16 years gives me a unique view point. In Japan, it’s fairly common knowledge that people disappear, having been kidnapped and forced to work in North Korea. 13 years ago, North Koreans kidnapped American David Sneddon while he was hiking in China. He is now Kim Jung Un’s English tutor. He has not been in contact with his family since he was abducted. The day the dictator doesn’t like David anymore, he will be executed.

If you really want to meet North Koreans, seek out those who have escaped or have family in North Korea. Donate money to organizations that help escapees relocate and adapt to their new homes and culture. Read books by North Korean refugees who are now free to tell you the truth. Go to South Korea and talk to anyone about their three years of mandatory military service and why it’s necessary. Don’t let wanderlust kill you and those around you. (There is evidence that Otto Warmbier, the university student tourist, was mistaken for another tourist group member who was separated from the tour getting lost for an entire night. This other British tourist returned to the hotel around the same time the propaganda poster in a forbidden corridor was reportedly stolen.)

I’d love to live in a world where everyone can travel freely. We don’t even live in a world where Americans can travel freely in America, just ask Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Tanisha Anderson, Tamir Rice, Jerame Reid, Walter Scott, Freddie Gray, or Philandro Castile. Wait, you can’t because they are dead, murdered because a cop didn’t like the way they looked in the land of the “free” and the home of the “brave”.

There is a Special Place in Hell for Female Comedians Who Don’t Help Other Comedians and It’s Freezing Hot

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Women and minorities are always held to different and higher standards when it comes to success in anything.  In order to achieve, we learn to embrace those higher standards that give us a competitive edge and hope the arbitrary standards will be ignored in the light of our sharply honed skills. Sometimes they are, often they are not. The trick to changing the system for the better is to not uphold the same arbitrary standards against your peers when you achieve success, remaining grateful and gracious throughout the process.

I’m just kidding! Fuck it. If you have made a lot of money and are on T.V. then that means you are better and know more than everybody else, especially other women and minorities in your field and they can suck your steamed vagina!

I am referring to that interview where a financially successful female comic, made famous by a reality show, called out most female comics for being hack and not having a joke about a war that happened 80 years ago.

I have mixed emotions about what she said. I was angry that she would generalize female comics under such a damning umbrella. On the other hand, I also agreed with her that women hacks do exist as she is a primary example of one. I had never called her or other hacks out on Twitter or social media (before this) because nobody, I mean NOBODY gets into comedy because she/he is emotionally healthy and stable. We all have our demons and the stage is where we work them out to the delight or horror of an audience.  We are all at different stages in our skills and have told hack jokes in the process of finding our individual voice. (My first year in,  I quoted my dad in stories on stage until I realized he was using some quip he read in a bathroom book. Who cares?)

This financially secure female comic also said, “As a comedian, I have a set of morals”.  Hang on there sister.  The last comedian to brag about having morals (as opposed to everyone else) is Bill Cosby, a serial rapist, and he got away with it because he was actually funny.

She claims she wants women to be better at comedy, which is interesting because I want the same for her.

When I read the part of the interview circulating the internet, I was inclined to think she was a cunt.  After reading the whole interview, I realized she is not a cunt, she is just not very bright.

Had Sarah Silverman said what she said, all of the social media attention would have been warranted, but she didn’t because Silverman is not an idiot, Sarah’s funny.

Through some regretful research, I have discovered that this is not the first time this woman has expressed her low opinion of female comics in an interview. In 2015, she said, ” The bar for women to succeed in comedy is very low.”  This is an infuriating opinion because it’s absolutely untrue unless she is describing her own career.

Thankfully, there are a ton of actually funny women and men doing projects and interviews that would not make Tina Fey cringe to be associated with.

 

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

It Gets Better After High School, It Really Does

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Graduation season is now over. This time of year, I always notice how different high school is in America compared to the rest of the world. It’s a tough time no matter what country you spend your teen years in, hormones know no borders.

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The older I get, the more ridiculous prom and formal dances seem to be. Teenage girls in dresses indistinguishable from the ones hookers and hostesses wear in Japan and Thailand.  And yet, we wonder why teenagers feel pressure to lose their virginity on prom night. (If you are a teenager reading this, please don’t lose your virginity on prom night or worse yet, home-, or court- warming. Take your time. You have the rest of your life and plenty of time to get HPV. You don’t have to collect all the strains before graduation like class credits. )

I have always hate the American obsession with its high school sport. It’s a devotion and obsession that replaces logic and individual thought, fueling a hatred for a neighboring school whose only crime is that the last two numbers of their zip code are different. The kind of trash talk I heard against my high school’s rival are the things you’d say about someone who raped your dog. I think our rival high school was actually accused of that. It’s a part of the high school experience that can only be justified if it replaced actual war. I am happy to say, Noam Chomsky agrees with me.

I wish I knew I would never ever have to see anyone I went to high school with if I didn’t want to so I never ever should have cared what anyone though of me.

One of my most rewarding moments in recent memory was being invited to my high school reunion by one of the “popular” kids and having to decline because I was touring the U.K.

For your enjoyment, I am including my Facebook response to the general high school reunion invite to prove that things can and do get better.

“I can’t go to my high school reunion. So let me catch the people I went to high school with up on what I’ve been doing. My skin has cleared up, I got money in the bank, I’m dating a 27-year-old and I still have no idea why most of you friended me on Facebook in the first place. It’s not like we were friends in high school.  I graduated a semester early to get away from you all and get on with real life.

 I’m very happy and I’ve never looked back except to see if you gained weight and ya have. I guess what I’m saying is thanks for entertaining me over the years. It doesn’t quite make up for all the mean shit you used to do and say about me and my disability but it is only a matter of time before you’re disabled too. So there.


High school was a pretty shitty time for me and I will continue to be baffled by anyone who wants to revisit a time and place where the most popular hangout for the most popular kids in school was a parking lot next to a truck stop with showers.

(if you are offended by this, I’m probably talking about you)”

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents)

Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I now work in the U.K. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com

Trump’s Got No Talent

“I can’t believe Trump won the election!” “I can’t believe they voted for Brexit!”  I heard this a lot on streets, in bars, and comedy clubs in New York City last year. ( To be fair,” What’s ‘Brexit’?” was asked a lot too, though the only answer given I ever heard a millennial say while looking at his menu, “I think it’s a kind of breaded appetizer.” )

How did a man whose casino went bankrupt, is famous in his home State for not paying small companies and individuals that do business with him, become the head of America’s Executive Branch?  Why did a country vote against a union that buys 50% of it’s exports and for their holidays to be complicated by visa applications? America’s Got Talent and Britain’s Got Talent, that’s why.

Think about it. How often does the average American or U.K. Citizen vote in a political election? Once  a year, if that. How often do viewers vote for their favorite contestant on America’s Got Talent or Britain’s Got Talent? Every single week. The stages of these shows are designed so patriotically with respective flags and colors they could be used as venues for the DNC, RNC or a UKIP strip club.

The RNCrnc77b5f-20160721-rnc-stage

amhqdefault America’s Got Talent 

And how do we choose the contestant we want to win on these shows? Like any good Disney movie taught us,   as long as we follow our hearts it will never lead us down the wrong path, unless you happen to be Woody Allen.  (“The heart wants what it wants.” Yeah, sure. If your heart wants to sleep with  an underage girl your are not thinking with your heart, you never had one.)

Who do you like to vote for? The woman who has practiced and practiced and has a lot of technical skill but no stage presence? Maybe, but probably not. She wasn’t that entertaining. Do we vote for the cocky man-child that isn’t that great at anything but is so ridiculously confident that you can’t help find him entertaining especially since he’s stupid and seemingly harmless? Yup.

It’s fun to vote for the guy that isn’t classically trained or talented, isn’t it? That’s the problem. We have had much more experience voting with our emotions that are manipulated by mood music and a charming back story than we do with facts and logic. Our conditioning is ongoing and is only getting worse, just look at your Facebook feed. ( And look up Cambridge Analytica.)

We are smarter than this, aren’t we? I get it. Facts and figures are dull and require careful thought. They require a command of logic and mental effort on our part. It’s easier to react, to not put the time or effort in. It’s much easier to let those with the time, money and ambition tell us what they want us to think and who to vote for in order to make their lives easier while making everyone else’s harder.

Don’t vote out of fear. Don’t vote for a party because their narrative is great while their policy is poor and/or doesn’t even exist.  The road to hell is paved with good intentions a.k.a votes based on inflammatory Breitbart and Fox News articles found on Facebook walls.

Don’t be razzle-dazzled into pressing your golden buzzer of a vote for someone that isn’t qualified, that doesn’t have the experience or skill set to protect and serve the average citizen. In short, do what Jesus would do. Ya know, don’t be a mindless prick.

Hello!

I’m Spring Day (real name, hippie parents) Moving back to the United States after having lived in Japan and traveling the world for 16 years has been a bit of a head fuck, especially since I am currently working in London, England. My blog “The United States of Shock!” is where I give my brilliant and bitter two cents, pence, yen and euro on my experience with culture shock and current events. If you have any questions you would like to have answered in a snit, email them to springdaycomedy@gmail.com.

Bye Bye Manic Dixie Nightmare 2016, Hello Apocolypse

spring-day-united-states-of-shock

I am going to start off this year by reviewing what some people have taught me.

Carrie Fisher taught me prescription pills are not a beverage. David Bowie taught me that having a gigantic penis that swings like the pendulum of a grandfather clock is the secret to being successful in life. Prince taught me that being the size of David Bowie’s penis doesn’t hurt your chances at being victorious, either. Gene Wilder taught me that if you have the right voice, you can make the sentence “Lemme cornhole ya.” sound downright classy . George Michael taught me to embrace my bushy eyebrows and chin. Hillary Clinton’s career has taught me to stop trying to make everyone like me because it is never going to happen and President Putin’s has taught me to live every day like it’s my last. (As sooner or later, he will make sure it will be)

Harper Lee taught me all you need to do is write one good book to make your life worthwhile, better yet, get your drinking buddy/cousin to write it for you. Florence Henderson taught me that life is not over if your TV husband is gay and you don’t have a toilet. Mohamed Ali taught me that poetry is more powerful than fists but not more powerful than Parkinson’s Disease. Fidel Castro taught me to stop smoking cigars and start smoking freedom. Gary Shandling taught me to do cocaine or plastic surgery but not both. Vanity taught me you could still be beautiful with 80’s hair. Piers Sellers taught me that you don’t have to do well in science or work for NASA because no matter how important your contribution is to the world, you will never be as famous as the Kardashians.

Bye Bye 2016, Hello Apocolypse15740788_10154397190259613_2551704377587852247_n