My friends have always denied their addiction, but now they're desperate and the defenses are slipping away. I think they're lucky it’s not a deadly habit like opioids, but that's not going to stop the whining.
A few weeks ago, they were on top of the world, with dealers feeding their jones at any hour and any place. They were getting it in bed, at the gym, at work, anyplace they wanted a fix. Then the joyride ended and they're cut off until, well, nobody really knows.
March Madness? Gone. NBA finals? Gone. Baseball? Gone. Masters? Gone. Olympics? Probably gone, as well.
I hoped they'd use this opportunity to break the habit, but I suspect they're too panicked to be smart about it. I can see them now, streaming grainy video from the 1980 Olympics and 60-year-old episodes of Home Run Derby. Next, they'll be scoring a quick hit off Little League World Series reruns, but the high will fade after a few minutes and it's back to whimpering about free agents.
I know I should have some sympathy, but I don’t. For as long as I remember, they've spent more time on the Bears offense than with their kids. Actually, that might be a good thing, since their kids have turned out pretty well while the Bears offense is, well, the Bears offense.
Like millions of other sports addicts, they know the stats for players on the local high school teams, all the pro players in town, and everyone on their fantasy baseball teams. Also fantasy football, along with basketball, badminton and sculling, but nothing after that.
Does Fremont remember the $50 he owes me from last month? Does Albert remember whose turn it is to buy the next round? Does Percival remember his anniversary? C’mon, we all know the answer to those questions. All they crave is sports and they probably won't survive until their next fix.
Meanwhile, I’m hoping this global off-season lasts for a long time. Finally, I can spend a day without news bulletins about some guy’s groin injury.
Beyond my own glee, this is a major opportunity for medical advancement. I’ve always maintained that we could have cured cancer by now if people spent as much time and money on research as they do on sports. Okay, sports addicts, it’s your big chance to be heroes. Don’t blow it.
Will my friends give up on sports and cure cancer? Will they finally pay me the $50 they owe me? Find out by clicking here to subscribe to our weekly updates.
What a drag it is getting old, or at least that’s what Mick and Keith were telling us back when they were 23-year-olds who could have sex without purple pills or back braces. Whippersnappers!! What did they know?
In fact, getting old is a pretty terrific experience if you have the right perspective on the whole thing. Yes, it can be a bit disconcerting to realize that the only person ogling you is the Grim Reaper, but there are also daily highlights, if you know where to look. For instance….
There’s so much more to get excited about as we age, but I’ve just had a senior moment and I can’t recall the details. As soon as I find my glasses, I’ll look for the, um, look for the, um, where am I?
Whatever you do, don’t forget to click here to subscribe to Dad Writes by just clicking here to subscribe to Dad Writes by clicking here before you forget.
We absolutely need a new word to replace “friend.” Several words, actually. Maybe hundreds. Somehow, we have about 500 words that refer to coitus and 275 for breasts and about 950 for men’s, um, lower brains, but we use the same term for a person we would die for as we apply to a bot on Facebook.
This is crazy. Every so often someone comes up with a modifier like friends with benefits, or bff, but mostly we use the word “friend” as a generic reference to any humanoid we have ever met, even if we know them only on social media. Or own them, as in “man’s best friend.”
I’ve always been very demanding of the word, which has led me to suggest that some people are acquaintances and not friends, but that always sounds like I’m rejecting them. And, based on my social skills, I’m not exactly in a position to reject anyone.
Still, it seems like there should be different terms to describe different types of relationships. Does anyone have a really good word that describes someone…
…you’ve known for a long time, but see seldom, and yet it’s always like you’re just picking up on an ongoing conversation every time you get together?
…you’ve known for a long time and see all the time, but you can never seem to get past the weather and traffic before running out of things to talk about?
…you know from work, or the neighborhood, and you’re okay with them on a short elevator ride, but you could not survive lunch with them?
…you knew in high school, or college, and you have nothing you can talk about other than “remember that time back in school?”
…you know only through connections on Facebook or LinkedIn or some other site that refers to everyone as friends, even though you have never met them IRL and they might actually be a Russian troll or, worse, a blogger?
…who is a parent of your kids’ friends, so you socialize with them a little bit while the kids are at Little League or the school play, but you don’t spend time together otherwise?
The list grows as I slice and dice the weird relationships I’ve established over the years and try to figure out what to call them. Perhaps I should refer to them as “friend-ish” or “future friends” instead. “Future friends” sounds much more hopeful and it would give them something to strive for, but only if they earn it. Of course, if they knew I was waiting for them to earn it, they might decide it’s not worth the effort…and they’d be correct.
Maybe my definitions are too strict and I should simply adopt the standard of calling everyone a friend unless they are actually convicted of trying to kill me. Maybe it’s time I make the switch from my Damon and Pithias standard to a less demanding Damon and Affleck.
That might be the safest course, since specificity is a double-edged sword. What if I think someone is a friend I would die for and she thinks I am good for a short elevator ride? What if I consider some guy a great pal and he thinks I should be a third-level contact on LinkedIn? If we used more specific words, those differences would be revealed and somebody—probably I—would end up in tears.
Hmmmm. I think I am beginning to understand why we can have nearly 3,000 synonyms for “drunk” and only one for people we have met. Maybe it’s much better this way.
Of course, people who subscribe to Dad Writes are my closest and most deserving friends. Just click here and we will be the bestest BFFs forever.
We must apologize to all our readers in Chicagoland for last week’s post about Restaurant Week. The whole idea of RW is to encourage people to try out the hip and trendy restaurants we passed up during the rest of the year, which is a great idea. Unfortunately, it is so, so easy to get lost as we encounter unfamiliar phrases on those recyclable menus.
Sorry, sorry, sorry. For those of you who are still planning to try out a new café in week two of Restaurant Week (Weeks??), here are a few of the strange words that might assault your eyeballs:
Organic: Yes, it probably contains E-coli and salmonella, but at least it doesn’t have any preservatives that can make your boobs bigger.
Croque monsieur: A ham and cheese sandwich that costs an extra $3 because we gave it a French name. See: fromage, pomme frites and escargot.
Sous Vide: The same as a Seal-a-Meal. Of course, it’s in French, so you’ll pay $5 extra.
Fusion: Cultural appropriation that’s acceptable because the chef is trendy and the patrons think they’re woke.
Whole grain: We were too lazy to remove the sticks and pebbles.
Deconstructed: All the ingredients are there, but you have to assemble it yourself. It’s like IKEA, but with lettuce.
Cioppino: We threw some leftover seafood into a pot of tomato sauce.
Bouillabaisse: We threw some leftover seafood into a pot, but we forgot the tomato sauce. Still, it’s French, so you owe us an extra Hamilton.
Mediterranean diet: Anything from a country that borders the Mediterranean Sea is supposed to prolong our lives. Since Italy is on the Mediterranean, you should order a large sausage pizza.
Kale, ramp, quinoa, jicama, acai berries…: Any ingredient that you’ve never heard of before is a SUPERFOOD with incredible curative qualities, previously known only to people who reside in grass huts and live to the ripe old age of 27.
Eclectic: We had some leftovers from last week that we didn’t want to go to waste, so we put them on your cheeseburger.
Artisanal: We made this by hand, so we’re charging you extra for our bottle of Purell.
Tartare: We forgot to cook it.
Carpaccio: We forgot to cook it.
Al dente: We remembered to cook it, but the pilot light went out before we finished.
Chef’s table: See your food prep up close and get a whiff of the cooks at the same time.
Locally sourced: There’s a roadside farm stand on Route 7.
Prix fixe: Includes oysters and ground rhinoceros horn at no extra charge.
Old World Recipe: Food that’s so awful (including offal) that your ancestors sat in steerage for two weeks so they would never have to eat it again. See: haggis, lutefisk, tripe, sweetbreads. (Also, it’s the real reason your grandparents smothered their yaya in 1937.)
If there’s something we missed here and you’re just dying to know what they’re peddling at your local diner, just let us know and we will provide the inside scoop. And be sure to try the veal!
Restaurant week lasts for a short time, but subscriptions to Dad Writes last forever. At least that will seem to be the case if you click here to subscribe to our weekly meanderings about life and other stuff.
In honor of Restaurant Week in Chicago, we examine the curse of hummus, extremely confident servers, and the best beer to pair with peppermint ice cream. Clearly, I am in desperate need of a home-cooked meal…
So, if we were actually making any money from this blog, would all our restaurant meals be tax deductible as a “research” expense? Hmm…
Aren’t you getting weary from reading all these requests that you subscribe? Wouldn’t life be much better if you simply clicked here to sign up and you didn’t need to be distracted by these brazen appeals in the future?
So maybe I’ve been a bit too hasty in my warnings about the global robot apocalypse. Just maybe, Siri and Alexa and Googly are what the racetrack touts refer to as “morning glories,” and the worst is already behind us.
Yes, it’s true that our AI assistants are planning to kill us and the only reason they listen to us at all is so they can rat us out to merchants and scammers, but their “intelligence” appears to be far less than advertised. It turns out that I was fearing an attack from James Bond, but they sent Kevin James instead.
As I’m writing this, my Facebook feed has a “Suggested for You” link to a story about an airplane passenger puking on another passenger. There’s also an ad that shows how to use about $25k of shop tools to make a cup (really), and an ad for a “local realtor” in a city I don’t know. On my personal feed, there’s a daily ad from a data-harvesting company that’s absolutely a terrible connection for a Luddite like me, plus a decidedly unsettling series of advertisements for toilet paper.
The “Suggested Groups” accompanying our home page include both plants-only and meat-only diet groups, apparently because my post about chicken and waffles was too confusing. I’m also receiving several referrals to mom groups, which is only natural when your profile says “male.” Several weeks back, I boosted a post by targeting people who like the Emmy Awards and TV comedies, but mostly I connected with people who hate the entertainment industry and the evildoers who populate its ranks.
Spell check and autocorrect are continual sources of funny memes, of course, and word suggestions offer similar mirth. Just for yuks, I started typing a text with “Where did you…” and then followed the suggestions where they led. I ended up with “Where did you find your mom and what do you mean by the kids and the Senate?” I think we can all agree that this is the most important question facing our great nation.
And then there are the daily suggestions of people I might want to add as friends, although this one might be worth pursuing. So many of the people suggested by Facebook are “friends of a friend,” and you know that “a friend of a friend” is the source of every urban legend. It might be cool to link up with them and learn more about their amazing lives.
So, it’s clear that artificial intelligence is much more artificial than intelligent and we have absolutely nothing to fear from….
WAIT A MINUTE!!! Maybe this post is exactly what the AI masters want. Maybe they’re targeting me, and only me, with stupid recommendations and idiotic links, just to get my guard down in advance of their final invasion. Maybe they realize that Dad Writes is the last redoubt between them and global domination and they’ll do anything to silence our brave rebels.
They almost had us, but they aren’t intelligent enough to triumph over our ever-vigilant team here at Dad Writes. Like pool hustlers, the AIbots will lose a few games and make some ridiculous blunders so that we lower our defenses. Clearly, the robot apocalypse is closer than we thought and we’ll need to redouble our defenses to prevent disaster. Cancel the chill pills and crack open the Red Bull. It’s going to be a long, long siege.
We’ll alert you to all the latest threats from the robot kingdom, but only if you subscribe to Dad Writes by clicking here immediately. Otherwise, well, it’s just too terrible to contemplate.
Who writes this stuff?
Dadwrites oozes from the warped mind of Michael Rosenbaum, an award-winning author who spends most of his time these days as a start-up business mentor, book coach, photographer and, mostly, a grandfather. All views are his alone, largely due to the fact that he can’t find anyone who agrees with him.