Dad for Beginners

Amateurism at its best

July 26, 2015
by Creed

The Vegan Rapper Inside

“Where’s the beef?” I scream aggressively as I head into the rap battle.

No one had told me beforehand that this was a vegan rap battle and that vegan rappers don’t beef, they tempeh. Embarrassed, I awkwardly mutter, “uh, where’s the effin tempeh, homies?” No one acknowledges. They see quite distinctly that it’s my first vegan rap battle and I’m clearly out of my element. Although a relatively experienced vegetarian wordsmith, I’ve admittedly not mastered the harmonious flow of the vegan freestyle nor honed my animal welfare vernacular enough to compete on the amateur vegan hip hop circuit.

MC Kale takes the stage and promptly calls the first contestants to the mic. I watch anxiously as Soyz ‘N the Hood drops a sick vegan flow on Lil’ Cauliflower. I instantly realize that I’m in over my head. These vegan rappers are hard and most of them veterans, highly seasoned, with nary a hint of dairy to be found. My heart races much like those of the swine before slaughter, or the bovine in steel-caged transport semis. I cower in the corner like a motherless baby cow, soon to be minced into veal on the mic.

MC Kale calls the shots. Rapper after rapper advances and soon it’ll be my turn. A novice vegan rapper at best, I’m merely a pawn in the plant-based rap game. A garden variety of experienced vegan freestylers have preceded me. Across the room, an honorary bust of the deceased Notorious FIG gazes my way. Tragically lost in the infamous red meat drive-by shooting outside LA many years ago, Notorious FIG still represents triumph and inspiration to much of the vegan rap community. My stomach turns as MC Kale calls me to the stage.

As I approach the mic, the crowd rains boos upon me. My stage name, Ludacrispy Tuna Roll, is inconsistent with vegan morals and the crowd reacts aggressively. I thought this was a vegetarian battle, where dairy products and seafood-centric flow would be welcome. I’m quite obviously an outsider here, as most of my rhyme book is laced with dairy-based insults and milk-chocolate-on-yo-momma rhetoric. Even my patented phrase, “leather-up, bitches” will not work with this audience. My opponent, Hay-Z, is one of the best known sustainable grain farmers on the underground vegan rap circuit. As Hay steps to the mic, he delivers a breathtaking beat down, exposing my lack of preparation and knowledge with slaughtering jabs like “you ain’t nuthin’ but edamame in my pod” and “just a brioche biotch”. I slowly disappear into the shadows, having been rapidly disposed of by a vegan rap assassin. Hay walks away victorious, the crowd throwing Hay’s trademark celebratory dark chocolate, sustainable almond cocoa nibs in the air.

I take my beating like a man yet still seek to vanish into the dark without encountering any haters. As MC Kale continues the semi-final round, I make my way towards the door. As I exit and turn the corner towards my environmentally friendly smart car, I see a silhouette of Notorious FIG step out of the shadows.

“You’re small time right now,” FIG asserts, “but you have the heart of a liberated Seaworld orca and the desire of a lamb scorned by the loss of his mother’s milk. Don’t give up. You have a vegan rapper inside you. We all do.”

Shocked by Fig’s assertion, I quickly turn to reply, but he’s already gone. Was he even there to begin with? Or was he a figment of my imagination? I’ll never know. As I drive home, I turn on an instrumental cut of Notorious FIG’s groundbreaking record “Born A-grain.” I start to conceive a new persona, something more consistent with wholesale animal wellbeing. The next vegan battle is the upcoming Friday at the organic farmers market. I’ll be ready.

July 17, 2015
by Creed

How to Write a Cover Letter

The cover letter. More meaningless a document does not exist in the professional world. The infamous cover letter. So often a requirement for job applicants…and yet is nothing more than the take-home-exam of the adult world. A good cover letter is only as good as the writer is imaginative. The cover letter is proof that one’s ability to present themselves with charisma trumps real world experience and expertise. It’s the photoshopped glamour shot of the employment sphere. With adult life so often surrounded by disappointment and letdown, there is still one place where you can be everything you hoped and dreamed to be…in your cover letter.

Dear Sir or Madam,

I’m writing this letter simply because it is a requirement of the applicant per your policy. Whilst I understand the requirement, I am struck by the remarkable meaninglessness of this document. A well-written cover letter will truly tell you nothing about me. I, like everyone else, will use this platform to convey my most desirable qualities while intentionally hiding my flaws.

A well-crafted cover letter is too obviously well-crafted. The flaw in such a document is that the applicant is given time and resources to best describe themselves in relation to a specific set of job requirements. Ultimately, the qualities I cite here in this letter may be different in my next cover letter, as the job demands are assuredly different. None of this self-characterization, however, reveals actual personal characteristics or work habits to the prospective employer.

I can use this space to tell you, the prospective employer, that I’m a genuinely hard worker who takes a tremendous amount of pride in my work. I could write that I’m a team player. I could say that I thrive in both independent and collaborative work environments. Of course, I’m only saying these things insofar as they are the things I think you would probably want to hear from a candidate. You’ll really never know if they are sincere or not until I’m hired.

What I, nor anyone else, would ever say in this letter is that I tend to get complacent in my work. I need constant challenges in order to grow. It is difficult for me to engage co-workers who I feel are not on my level of intellect. Admittedly, I will always strive to counsel my peers and subordinates in order to get the best out of them, yet once I see that someone is not buying in or is a lost cause, my relationship with that person pretty much ends. I probably wouldn’t want to say that I give up on people in a cover letter, however that’s the truth. If you, my co-worker and peer, does not endeavor to excel in your work as I do, then please go find something that makes you happy.

Unfortunately, I’m bound by the requirements of this job application to submit this straightforward description of my motivations and qualities. I’m a good guy and a good worker and yes, I have all the desired elements of this position and more. But how can you believe me after everything I’ve already said?

I feel that I’m a wonderful candidate for this job and that our professional relationship will flourish harmoniously and bestow equal fortune on both the business at hand and our aspirations for personal achievement. That was way too poetic.

Hope to hear from you soon.

Thank you and have a great day. Or don’t. I really couldn’t care less.


June 19, 2015
by Creed

Success Factors, pt. 3: The Realist

Some recent literature on has focused on the topic of work and how to it relates to children and life in general. Topics included how to train kids to adapt to modern working society as well as how to explain the concept of “employment” to a child. A child’s daily life is whimsical and timeless. Perhaps the true indicator of adulthood is when you consciously become aware that your life has shifted from timelessness to scheduling. Adult life is stringently scheduled and almost always do adult schedules operate around the idea of work. Employment has become the primary determinant for scheduling other, non-work related adult activities such as vacations, personal appointments and even things as routine as dinner and watching TV. There are four kinds of people in the modern workforce: the psychopath, the delusional, the realist, and the apathetic. In this new 4-part series, we’ll look at each segment of the population as it relates to employment.

Part 3: The Realist

The realist is someone who understands that professional advancement can benefit them personally, but has little to no emotional stake invested in their career. The realist comprehends the importance of work insofar as it relates to their ability to survive in life. While the realist will occasionally utilize the tactics of The Psychopath and The Delusional, they generally maintain a knowledge that they are doing so temporarily in response to an opportunity to benefit their personal life. The realist can permeate the realms of psychopathic and delusional freely and return to their realistic state without guilt. Although they may employ the psychopathic and delusional strategies at times, the realist can typically achieve the desired results of either tactic without hurting or condemning those around them. They have an astute way of observing opportunity and attacking it without ever being labeled as “insane” or “suck-ups.”

The realist finds intrinsic value in their profession only insofar as it is actively benefitting their personal life. Typically, this is the person who will sacrifice personal time on occasion for work-related reasons but will just as easily say no when their career too forcefully interferes with their personal life. The realist has a balance that the delusional lacks and a sense of empathy that is absent from the psychopathic.

The crux of the problem when talking about a realist is professional and personal homeostasis. By seeing both sides of the scale, the realist maintains an equilibrium between work and home by valuing each equally, albeit differently. This is the type of person who understands the value of work only as it relates to the value of sustaining personal happiness. However, with personal and professional success still interconnected, the realist will always need both realms functioning equally well to benefit each other. The mind of the realist works like that of a Venn diagram, with two distinct spheres of life that are separate from each other but occasionally will overlap and influence one another.

What this really boils down to is utility. When the bulk of your adult life is spent painstakingly balancing your career and your life, where is the utility there? When aspects of your existential being that formerly made you…YOU, have vanished in favor of managing complete and total stability, are you still able to have a sense of utility? If your personal utility is ultimately linked to your day job, then you’ve reached this point of realism.

Pt. 1, The Psychopath

Pt. 2, The Delusional

June 14, 2015
by Creed

Opiate Fantasy, Incubus Incendiary

I wake up every morning. Everybody does. Sometimes it’s pleasant after a deep sleep. It feels good to be rested. It feels good to feel good. But the dreams…they are still there. Even after 9 years, the dreams persist. They haunt my subconscious. They glorify the entity that was once the most destructive force in my life. They make me covet. I want. I sleep out of necessity, like we all do. However, the freedom I’ve achieved in life is forever bound to the bondage I experience while I sleep. It reminds me in the worst ways.  The dreams are great. They are real. They are glorious. And that, perhaps, it what’s scariest.

I haven’t used OxyContin since 2006. Yet I can easily convince myself that I have relapsed many times, over and over again, in my sleep. The dreams. They persist. The grandiosity of my accomplishments in conscious life are dwarfed by my eternal inability to sober up my dreams. What seems like a nightmare in reality is an indulgence, nay, a luxury, in sleep. If sleeping is akin to dying then heaven is a giant prescription bottle and I die…again and again. Often times with far too much glee.

I cannot escape the dreams. I do not feel the aching in the dreams. I don’t hurt. My bones don’t cause me pain. My muscles don’t strain. I don’t sweat. I am free to use in my dreams without any side effects. They are deceptive, sometimes too deceptive. What seems like a sanctuary is in fact just the opposite. The dream world is safe insofar as it is consciously separate from the real world. The demarcation is clear, for now. Keeping the line in the sand visible is the only factor preventing the dream world from seeping into the real world. The mind cannot be controlled while sleeping and remembering what I dream about is a constant reminder that I am not well. That I’ll never be normal. That something man made can own a man. It’s a sad reality that’s defined through a distinct unreality. It’s not real yet the mind makes it real.

As the years have passed the dreams have become infrequent, yet never gone entirely. They return on a whim and enable only the best memories of using. They glorify death by masquerading as salvation. Dangerous little reminders of how much fun dying can be.

June 4, 2015
by Creed

“Don’t be Such a Tool:” A Guide to Middle Management

The modern workforce is all about job security. In order to protect your lifestyle and professional income, the average, mid-level manager must constantly be guarding his or her job security. The importance of this is so high in fact, that the realm of middle management has become as much about vigorously protecting one’s livelihood as it is about doing what’s right, what’s dignified, or what’s in the best interest of the company. When it comes to professional success, the lion’s share of effort must be channeled into securing one’s own future lest you be victimized by ambitious underlings or the company profit and loss statement. For the average mid-level manager, there is little to gain by putting in an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay…or so the expression goes. Protect your livelihood and cover your ass at every corner with a few foolproof tips and management style methods.

For those of us managing the operation in a manufacturing or industrial setting, the average hourly wage worker is either an immigrant, elderly, or a college aged student looking to supplement their education. In most cases they are grossly underpaid and often work in less-than-desirable physical conditions. All of these classes of people have a unique ability to be molded into a specialized proletariat designed to protect your own personal job security. In most cases, they are uneducated and live their lives paycheck to paycheck, just as most people do. However, you can motivate your people no matter what age or ethnic background and inspire productivity with a simple opportunistic phrases like, “don’t be such a tool” and “my god you’re useless.” In expertly leading your team, you are securing their loyalty and thereby protecting your own interests. If the tables turn, make sure you have pictures of them slacking off or breaking a company rule to use against them in exchange for their silence. Blackmail is still one of the most powerful devices for corporate compliance.

When it comes to appeasing your superiors, it is important to remember that virtually everything a mid-level manager does can be pencil whipped. The key is to be able to pencil whip various reports faster and more efficiently than your coworkers. It is crucial that you not reveal your expert pencil-whipping methods and even go as far as to let the more honest and foolish simpletons keep doing all your work the hard way while you sit back and arbitrarily enter fabricated data into a spreadsheet that quite honestly, no one is going to read anyway. Stay a step ahead of your peers and get a jump on your days pencil whipping from the comfort of your own toilet before even leaving the house in the morning. Everything can be done remotely these days, including falsifying company records during a bowel movement. What a time to be alive.

The longer you are employed in a like position, the easier the day-to-day work load becomes. Once you have mastered the art of condescendingly belittling your employees and contriving menial daily reports, it is critical to your success as a mid-level manager to find a new challenge to occupy your mind. A fun and effective way to do this is to create games around the workplace and test the operational acumen of your fellow managers. Create nuanced differences in their daily routines to test their endurance such as zip tying someone’s desk chair to a nearby file cabinet, removing their wireless router when they are away, or filling their desk drawers with random company materials to create the illusion that they are potentially stealing from the company. Clandestine forays into the work spaces of your colleagues can also yield rewards such as a nice pen with a clicky top or an expired can of Perrier which could be useful to slide into their muffler on the way to the car as you sneak out of work early for the 97th consecutive day.

Corporate culture is based on the principles of avarice and greed and by selfishly employing these tactics, you can quickly become a model mid-level manager within the corporate power structure. After slowly and quietly annihilating everyone around you, you’ll be poised to take that next step into upper management and reap the rewards at a higher volume using similar strategies. As you climb the corporate ladder, take solace in the fact that the sheer strength of your subterfuge propelled you to these heights. Promulgate this culture of dishonesty and egocentric gluttony by taking on a protégé and guiding him or her through the trials and tribulations you experienced as a novice deviant. As your apprentice grows into their role, be sure to routinely crush their spirit and throw them under the bus at every opportunity. After all, job security still reigns supreme.


May 15, 2015
by Creed

Silence is Golden and Other Noise-Related Lies

The ever-popular idiom “silence is golden” has become so engrained culturally that we inherently believe that silence is a sought after and desirable quality. As an adult, silence in solitude is a wonderful thing. However, silence is tricky because so often it can allude to something else. That something is almost always sinister and negative. The popular colloquialism is especially skewed by the presence of children. Much like other adult normalcies, kids ruin silence. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, however, since kids basically ruin everything. It is what they are best known for.

Silence is highly suspicious and potentially disastrous when a toddler is involved. Toddlers spend much of their little lives in some form of motion accompanied by incoherent chattering. There is nary a noise-free moment to be had in the presence of a toddler. When those moments eventually come, the silence is at best skeptical and nowhere near golden. If your toddler is quiet for more than 7 consecutive seconds, odds are he or she has discovered how to perpetrate some devious act that requires their complete focus. Silence from a toddler only exists insofar as it contributes to the concentration needed immediately prior to destroying a family heirloom or ingesting something illicit. The comfortable silence threshold for the parent of a toddler is exactly 6 seconds. Once that 7th second of silence hits, you better find that little creature fast.


Nary was sound was uttered during this expedition. Sneaky creatures, indeed.

Another noise-related colloquialism that champions silence is the expression “to reduce someone to silence.” This phrase usually indicates that the person enjoying the silence has done or said something so rebuking or thought-provoking that the other individual is literally speechless. In these instances, the rebuttal is so sharp or decisive that the individual can relish the noiselessness, knowing that their act or comment, “reduced the other person to silence.” When dealing with a toddler, however, the only one being routinely left speechless is the parent. There is no rebuking a baby. None. A toddler lives their life in a constant state of speechlessness and replaces any potential awe-inspired silence with a chorus of shrieks or squeals. Reducing a small child to silence is like hunting a Griffin with a laser gun…none of it exists.


You have a better chance of successfully hunting the mythical lion-eagle than enjoying silence in the presence of a toddler.

One of the more judicial colloquialisms of silence is the expression, “your silence implies your guilt.” This phrase can be used in the adult world when someone refuses to answer an accusatory question or pleads the 5th. It doesn’t work at the toddler level simply because toddlers are always guilty and never silent. Despite the fact that toddlers never shut up, it is safe to assume that they are always guilty. A toddler will never refute their guilt with a well-crafted alibi. Similarly, they will never remain silent…ever. As the parent, you’ll never find yourself saying, “your silence implies your guilt” to a toddler because the fact that they’re a toddler is enough to prove their guilt 100% of the time, usually in the noisiest fashion imaginable.


In a court of law, toddlers are presumed guilty and eventually proven guilty 100% of the time.

Idioms like these may be partially true at times in the adult world, but as usual with kids, the rules simply don’t apply. If you’re a parent, the word “silence” has been vanquished from your lexicon. Silence is neither golden nor reduced nor implicit of anything. It’s just gone. Forever.

May 10, 2015
by Creed

Success Factors, pt. 2: The Delusional

Some recent literature on has focused on the topic of work and how to it relates to children and life in general. Topics included how to train kids to adapt to modern working society as well as how to explain the concept of “employment” to a child. A child’s daily life is whimsical and timeless. Perhaps the true indicator of adulthood is when you consciously become aware that your life has shifted from timelessness to scheduling. Adult life is stringently scheduled and almost always do adult schedules operate around the idea of work. Employment has become the primary determinant for scheduling other, non-work related adult activities such as vacations, personal appointments and even things as routine as dinner and watching TV. There are four kinds of people in the modern workforce: the psychopath, the delusional, the realist, and the apathetic. In this new 4-part series, we’ll look at each segment of the population as it relates to employment.

Part 2: The Delusional

The delusional is someone who believes that professional advancement will eventually manifest itself as personal growth. While this person does not possess the ruthless nose-to-the-grind work habits of The Psychopath, the delusional are not entirely different in the sense that they truly embrace the idea that happiness in life is a direct function of success in one’s career. The delusional is the person who will work long hours and extra days not out of a need to find intrinsic value in their jobs, but because the outward perception of their professional pseudo-pride will eventually garner them professional advancements, financial gain, and thus personal happiness. The delusional believe in a cause-and-effect scenario that is only partially within their control and intentionally overcompensate in the workplace in an attempt to shift the balance in their favor. In doing so, the delusional seek rewards based on their feigned professional happiness.

The delusional differ from the psychopathic in the sense that they’ve identified a personal happiness, however it is ultimately rooted in success factors inextricably linked to their careers. Much like the psychopath, the delusional will neglect personal needs in favor of work, however they only do so insofar as they believe their “professional altruism” will be witnessed, appreciated, and in time, rewarded. The delusional have trained their minds into believing that excellence in the workplace will afford them benefits that they can use to enhance their personal lives.

The delusion in this type of belief system exists because the individual truly buys into the notion that their employer will see their feigned effort as authentic pleasure in their profession. The delusional are easily identified as the employees who purposefully go above and beyond. The individuals who will intentionally upstage co-workers in order to be seen. Colloquially, we call them brown-nosers, suck-ups, and snakes. Often times the delusional are backstabbers, gossipers, and swindlers. The façade they wear like a mask is translucent to everyone except them. Only they can see their true motives however for all their delusional foresight, they often fail to see themselves for who they really are.

Because the delusional are, well, delusional, they place a heavily weighted emphasis on the end result of their professional excellence yet find that they’ll never truly cease to be delusional. The reason for this is because as long as personal growth is tied to professional success and by extension, money, there will never be an end to the cyclical act of pretending to find intrinsic value in one’s job.

What this really boils down to is utility. When the bulk of your adult life is spent engaged in your career, where is the utility there? When aspects of your existential being that formerly made you…YOU, have vanished in favor of your career, are you still able to have a sense of utility? If your day job is now your sole source for perceived personal growth, then you’ve reached this point of delusion. If you have effectively trained your mind to believe that whatever it is you do all day for money is somehow the nucleus of your personal satisfaction, then you are the delusional. Congratulations.


Part 1: The Psychopath

May 3, 2015
by Creed

Do Not Spareth the iPhone Lest you Spoil the Child

What a time to be alive. Modern innovation and ingenuity has radically changed the way we live our day to day lives. The advent of technology has created an intertwined global marketplace through mediums like social media and while it has seemingly brought us closer together culturally, it has also driven us further apart socially. We can interact with virtually anyone, anywhere, with just a tap on a tiny 6” screen. Our children are tech savvy early on, as they are now raised not just with the technology available but often times they are raised principally by the technology itself. There is nothing more comforting as a parent then knowing that I can check out entirely and just let daddy iPad do the cognitive laboring.

In 2015, you can live entirely within your phone. In place of using social media to enhance the social experience of actual real-life relationships, one can forego human interaction entirely and slip into and out of society at their whimsy simply by swiping across a screen. Talking has been replaced by texting. Newspapers have been replaced by the internet. Family game night has been replaced by Words with Friends. Social validation and acceptance has been replaced by Instagram. And gossip ridden sewing circles, day time television, and virtually any interpersonal conflict has been replaced and relocated to Facebook. No individual ever needs to leave their home anymore. The entire human experience can be achieved remotely. The iPhone 7 is even rumored to have mechanical arms that can reach out and hug you.


Hold me closer, tiny iPhone.

But with this dramatic push to access everything through a handheld device, experiences that were once a common component of childhood are extinct. Modern children will never know the apprehension of recording a song off the radio and just hoping…HOPING…that the DJ wouldn’t talk over the music. You’d call into your favorite local FM station and request a song…then sit anxiously with your thumb on the red “record” button of your Walkman – or if you were really cool, your Home Alone Talkboy – just praying you’d get a clean cut for yourself.

These technology spoiled children will never know the pain and embarrassment of getting your sausage fingers stuck in the rotary phone dial. Or hitting the wrong hole on the last digit and having to start over. Kids these days complain about having to wait for a YouTube video to complete buffering but will never understand that there was once a time when your VCR would actually eat the VHS tape if it felt like it.

Now we can point and swipe and click and play and access everything we want…as long as we always remember to strategically place phone chargers around our life…but there was once a time when we would could charge our Nokia 8210 once every 96 days since all we did with it was play snake and make the occasional phone call. My iPhone lost 4% just sitting here as I type this. Now we can laugh, cry, and experience the entire range of human emotion without even leaving the couch.

Convenience has become far too convenient. There were few things in life more depressing that strolling into Blockbuster only to find that the movie you wanted was already rented. At which point you’d ask the cashier when it was due back…then return on that very day to rent it. You’d scurry home and slide that bad boy into your double deck VCR and do some illegal copying onto a blank VHS. What a rebel you were. But despite your thievery, you’d always remember to Be Kind, Rewind.


I’m starting to regret my Hollywood Video neck tattoo.

Risk management was paramount to the individual. There were all kinds of daily risks that we tried to protect ourselves from. Like losing your Playstation memory card lest you be unable to pick-up your progress on Crash Bandicoot. Now all saved game data goes to some cloud and is retained forever with no risk factor. Where’s the fun in that? Kids these days will never experience the thrill of hiding lewd adult publications in strategic locations around their bedrooms. There was once a time when finding pictures of naked people was a distinct challenge and we, the resourceful generation that we are, climbed that Everest routinely. The smartphones, search engines, and the “clear history” feature have erased that experience altogether.

The propensity for malfeasance and the inclination towards isolation is heightened when the challenges that used to make-up our lives are removed. It’s become so normal, in fact, that we readily complain when a webpage takes longer than 0.7 seconds to load…when Siri can’t find the local Panera…or when the grease smudge on our iPhone prevents the Starbucks reader from accepting our digital barcode. The world stops when technology stops and without an internet connection, we’ve become far too useless. However, it’s important to remember that the next time you suffer a panic stroke caused by a slow internet connection while pinning pictures of cats to your vision board during your morning bowel movement, you’ll still have to come to at some point and wipe your ass manually.

April 17, 2015
by Creed

How to Placate a Woman in 5 Easy Steps

As a man, women enrich our lives in so many ways. Whether it is a wife, mother, daughter, or platonic relationship, the company of a woman is always sought after. However, in much the same way that a woman can be charming, alluring, and coveted, they also have the innate ability to erupt into a murderous rage with nary a warning sign. For the intellectual man of honor and chivalry, it is best to react quickly and decisively in order to counteract this unpredictable act of aggression. Countless men struggle to grasp the intricacies of defending and reversing the female meltdown, however no more do men need to live in constant anxiety. Below are five foolproof methods to placate a women in your life.

  1. Be emotional – Women love a man who can express his emotions eloquently. While this is not always the most easily accessible feature in many males, it is an extremely beneficial skill to learn for the man seeking to placate his significant other. Emotion is evident in lots of different ways and for the man just starting this pilgrimage of emotional awakening, it is wise to start slow until you become an expert emotion-er. Use cliché phrases to placate a woman like, “don’t be so emotional,” “calm down,” and “you’ll be fine.” These are great ways to show the woman in your life that you care. As you better hone your emotionally sensitive side, mix in some of the more effective signature lines like, “you remind me of your mother” and “I’ll be at the bar.”
  1. Don’t be emotional – Women like men. Like, real men. Like, manly men. So it is of paramount importance in any relationship that you, the man, not be an overly sensitive, emotional girly man when she is in need of comforting. Instead, exercise your masculinity by ignoring any and all emotion and instead go do something manly like chopping wood, eating an entire brisket, or randomly kicking things. Your woman will see the rugged and untamed wilderness man that she fell in love with and the emotional burdens she carries will melt away like gossamer in a light rain.
  1. Give her space – Sometimes an angry or irritated woman just needs space. For many women, there is simply nothing that you, the man, is going to say or do in order to placate her and it is best to just step back and let the storm run its course. You can still be the helpful beacon of altruism in your relationship by leaving household chores and responsibilities undone in an attempt to occupy her mind during this time of isolation. Placate a woman by leaving the dirty dishes in the sink, the laundry in the hamper, and although it may be challenging, refrain from cleaning the bathroom or any room at all for that matter. In doing so, you give your significant other the necessary distractions to keep her mind engaged while she sorts through her emotional crisis in solitude.
  1. Don’t give her space – Women need constant validation and when faced with a displeased female, the best tactic for a man is to be available and all up in her business. By smothering your woman to the point of physical and emotional suffocation, you’re displaying your awareness and concern for her fragile emotional state. Often the best strategic play for a man in this situation is to adopt a “lost puppy” mentality and simply follow her from room to room asking nurturing and productive questions like, “what’s wrong?” and “when is dinner?” By permanently attaching yourself to your mate in a time of distress, you can better prepare yourself for the remainder of your life together. The flawless logic behind this tactic is one employed in the natural world by male Anglerfish of the deep sea. The male Anglerfish fuses his body to the female, becoming permanently attached and thus a slave to her biological demands until he dies.
  1. Stop breathing – This final tip is a highly advanced relationship strategy used by only the most skilled and experienced husbands. When a woman is in any state of emotional discomfort, the most effective course of action for a man is to simply stop breathing. By ceasing to consume oxygen, your internal organs will rapidly begin to fail and your blood will become a useless sludge providing zero nourishment to your body. As you enter a comatose state that’s sure to result in a painful death, your significant other will gradually improve as you slip into eternal darkness.

Now go forth, men, and employ these flawless tactics in your relationships with the female species. You will assuredly experience a strengthened bond and a renewed emotional warmth. Placating the women in your life is difficult, but understanding how to execute the task with superior grace and integrity is not. You’re welcome.

April 7, 2015
by Creed

Marine Iguanas and the “Terrible Twos”

Colloquialisms abound in the world of parenting. One of the more common is the term “terrible twos.” This popular expression serves as a harbinger for parents who have not yet experienced having a child between the ages of 2 and 3. The phrase signifies a stage in childhood development characterized by unpredictable toddler-esque rage and whimsy. The terrible twos is supposed to be a trying time for a new parent. One where the only thing more welcoming than pacifying your enraged and capricious youngling is perhaps the sweet release of death.

Perhaps the most interesting thing about being a new parent is how the actual act of parenting never really gets any easier. It changes over time, but as it changes it only promulgates itself in new, innovative challenges. In order to survive, parents have to be evolutionary and adapt…much like the marine iguana of Fernandina. Unfortunately, also very much like the marine iguana, the blood of an evolutionary parent wears thin quickly until eventually their muscles seize up and they lay incapacitated in a fetal state, unable to move until that which tortures them most is neutralized. For the iguana, it is the cold of the icy Pacific. For the parent, it is the tiny human.

terrible twos

The marine iguana isn’t smarter than you, they are just more evolved.

The terrible twos is to a parent what the frigid Pacific is to a marine iguana. It is an inconvenient and annoying feature but it is a function of an unchangeable environment and thus must be adapted to. It is in such a way that the parent can use the rationale that this inalterable circumstance is ceaseless and thereby create the perception that the terrible twos aren’t necessarily “terrible,” they are just weird. When viewed through a filter of eccentricity, it is plausible to underscore the sheer outlandishness of what two-years-olds will do or say or request. Most requests are odd things that no human would ever think are important to daily life, yet become of paramount importance to a two-year-old…things like demanding a bowl of strawberries each night right before bed or refusing to ride in the car unless there is a large shovel present on the adjacent seat.

terrible twos

This is a face that only a parent can love and hate and resent and hide from and slit their wrists to.

It is odd behaviors and bizarre requests that are perceived as unimportant by the parent that in reality, are of immense importance to the “terrible two-year-old.” These items, viewed as meaningless and ultimately denied, are usually what ignite the unbridled hostility in the two-year-old and eventually send the parent into a painful state of muscle seizures and immobilized affection. The weird requests of a two-year-old is the proverbial “icy Pacific” in the parenting world. It doesn’t take a Rhodes Scholar to identify the potential for a flare-up in toddler rage and yet somehow we continue to blame the developing child for their moments of inevitable insanity. It’s the equivalent of a marine iguana attempting to warm the ocean with blow dryer. Not only is this an impossible task, but the iguana lacks hands and electricity…and a local Walmart. Yet somehow they thrive without labeling the ocean as terrible, because no matter how dangerous and unpredictable, the iguana knows that its survival is predicated on the very thing that can destroy it.

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