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Life’s An Obituary. Then You Die.

March 12, 2013 Leave a comment

“An obituary doesn’t happen after you die. An obituary happens while you are alive.” – Kyle Freaking Baxter

In an effort to prepare myself for the afterlife, I have carefully considered today. I was reading the obituary of a man who lived a straightforward American life, worked for 40 years, had 2.3 kids, loved fishing, owned a dog, and had a bad combover. His kids wrote him a polite, albeit mundane, sendoff in the local newspaper.

I don’t want my family to assemble a pile of facts after I’m gone. Before God and the world, I submit this humble time capsule. May my family print this, word for word, in the newspaper (The Mars Times – I plan to live to 238, mind you). Some facts may be greatly exaggerated or outright lies, but I feel it still captures my soul as an exaggerator and outright liar.

“Kyle Baxter was humbly born in a barn. For this reason, he never learned to close the front door. His parents were hard-working, salt-of-the-earth, sweat-of-the-brow, and otherwise good-looking people of child-bearing age. They raised him amongst his siblings, who were older in age and similar in genetic composition.

As a young lad, Kyle enjoyed the outdoors, especially as he saw it from inside the house, taking in the air conditioned goodness that God had bestowed upon Man. Kyle excelled in school, because he figured out how to bully the smarter children into taking tests for him. He graduated as Valedictorian, Class Clown, Captain of the football team, Miss Congeniality, and Prom King of his home school. Throughout his college years, he worked at a local grocery store, providing outstandingly handsome service to the public.

Kyle was married at the ripened age of 22 to an old spinster one year his junior. He and his wife lived a modest life as secret millionaires in a suburb of Kansas City. This was markedly modest because these secret millionaires were actually super-secret billionaires who had made their fortune from the sale of their business, Google. You see, Kyle thought to himself one day, ‘What if, someone wanted to find something on Wikipedia? They should totally Google it! Now if only I could figure out what it means to google something, besides an utterly sophomoric, chortle-inducing act.’

Though he lived beloved by the masses, even having been nominated as Best Supporting Actor (and it is an honor just to be nominated), Kyle lost out on that hallowed Oscar to James Franco (who Oscar-baited the Academy) (I MEAN, WHO TAKES THE ROLE OF A TRANSGENDERED GUY WITH CANCER UNLESS HE WANTS A MEANINGLESS AWARD???) who had a well-deserved win.

***story detailing how I wrestled a boa constrictor to save a school bus full of blind children***

Kyle spent his 230th birthday with family. Just him and his wife. No kids. Not even teenagers. In fact, anyone under 80 was not permitted. Steak was served. With a side of steak.

***insert more text about how great I am here***

Sadly, Kyle met his Maker before his time. After volunteering at a soup kitchen in a rough neighborhood during the holiday of ‘Kyle Baxter Day’, he was attacked by a gaggle (tee-hee! Oh, sorry . . . I thought you said google) of streetwise punks who were trying to burn down an orphanage. Kyle died of a heart attack brought on by exhaustion, having single-handedly beat to death 50 men 1/10th his age.

In short, Kyle was the man every other man wanted to be: good job (super-secret billionaire), hot wife, Oscar nomination (what an honor just to be nominated), and the guy who actually got Bin Laden. Spoiler Alert: I put a banana peel in his shower. He lived life to its fullest, which was 110%, coincidentally what all great professional athletes give.”

I bid you all adieu,
Kyle F. Baxter

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How Un-Christian of you!

January 13, 2013 1 comment

“What exactly is a Pentecostal?”

A Catholic friend asked me that age-old question, and it caught me off-guard. To truly explain what a “Pentecostal” is, you have to start with the earlier offshoots of “Protestants” (from the Latin for “those who can’t get along with others”) and work outward.

I personally grew up as a Pentecostal/Charismatic, non-denominational, Bible-thumping, adjective-loving Christian. As such, I fostered a personal relationship with Jesus, was so thankful I had everything 100% right, and my heart broke for the 2,000 years of so-called “Christians” who died and are burning in Hell because they didn’t believe exactly what my church believed. It wasn’t until years later I realized that, if self-righteous judgementalism was going to change the world, we would already find ourselves in the middle of nearly 7 billion Pentecostal Charismatics. And we would all live in Branson.

I went into a bit greater detail, including wild arm gestures and flow charts. I explained that most Christian offshoots happen because of some perceived injustice relating to oppression, corruption, or large hat-wearing. Most of these denominations have agreed to disagree, and now the only thing separating them is doctrine and salvation. Kidding! (I totally had you there.) 95% of arguments between people of different denominations come down to drinking and dancing. A standard conversation between co-workers goes something like:

Fred: “What church do you go to?”
Hank: “First Church.”
Fred: “What do you believe?”
Hank: “Drinking, no. Dancing, yes.”
Fred: “I believe in drinking, but not dancing.”
Hank: “Well, then I suppose I should argue my position every day until we stop talking to each other altogether.”
Fred: “Great idea!”

Several examples of Christians that can be found in the United States, classified by their stance on drinking and dancing:

Catholic/Lutherans – Drinking, Dancing OK. At first glance, much of their style of worship is similar in structure, including their benedictions and creeds. The Lutherans finally wised up, and they never let a drunk guy with a staple gun and a notebook full of grievances out of their sight any more. So, for the most part, they get along well now.

You totally have to respect the Catholics for referring to their meetings as “obligations”. At least they tell it like it is, right? So many of the people I grew up around, through gritted teeth and off-the-chart blood pressure, referred (I assume jokingly) to service in their local congregation as “heavenly”. Right after that, they clutched their left arm and fell over. By comparison, “obligation” is a breath of fresh air.

Baptists – Drinking, Dancing Not OK. Please forgive me, I am completely over-generalizing the Baptists. By “Baptists”, I mean “the neighbors who lived behind us when I was a kid”. That is my only point of reference. The main tenants of the Baptist denomination is baptism by immersion in water, board games, and country music. They also use “substitute words”. For instance, when a Baptist hits their thumb with a hammer, it would not be uncommon to hear, “Shuckey-darn! That hurt like the dickens!”

Though generally nice people, I would not want one of them manning a shotgun at the other window during a zombie invasion. They seem a little queasy. “Shuckey-darn, one of those flesh-eating sons-of-guns got through the door!”

Texans – Drinking, Dancing Not Just OK, But Strongly Encouraged. It doesn’t matter what denomination you are in Texas; you have beer on hand. I’m pretty sure even Mormons in Texas have can holders on their bicycles. If you live in Texas, you MUST successfully perform a kegstand as proof of citizenship when you get pulled over.

To be honest, I was a little hesitant to include Texans on my list of “American Christians”, being that Texas is practically a separate country (except for Austin, where all the tree huggers and unshaven women live).

Pentecostal/Charasmatic – Drinking, Dancing Not OK, So The Members Just Do It In Private And Then Preach Against It. The belief system of Pentecostals and Charismatics centers on the still-active works of the Holy Spirit, instilling their children with a healthy fear of those different than them, and homeschooling.

A great number of these churches are “non-denominational”, which means they are a further removed bunch of people who can’t get along with those who already couldn’t get along with the people before them. You can imagine the turnover rate! Each non-denominational church has the distinction of carrying a unique message direct from God that you can’t hear anywhere else (except the non-denominational church next door).

If I left out your denomination, I am truly sorry. My sincerest apologies to those friends of mine who are Methodist, Episcopalian, Mormon, Anglican, Orthodox, Presbyterian, NASCAR fans, or one of the thousands of other denominations too numerous to name. Perhaps you can still see how your own experience may fit into this general construct.

What I did realize, after a few hours of conversation with my Catholic friend, is that we are not so far apart in our beliefs. (Except for our stances on drinking and dancing–those are deal-breakers, and I will never speak with that heretic again.)

Non-Traditional Enemies

February 12, 2012 2 comments

When I was a fresh-faced college kid, the world was surely my oyster (it smelled like seafood and had a small, meaty center). I was new in town, and had no enemies or natural predators. That is, until I started classes. I could hear the sound of my dismay in the distance.

“Clicka-clicka-clicka-clicka-clicka-clicka-clicka” the sound would go, and it grew louder as it came nearer. Students familiar with the sound emptied the hallways, scuttling into classrooms at an alarming rate. I stood speechless it turned the corner, leaving in its wake a trail of Scantrons and complaints.

The Non-Traditional Student

Anyone who has had any college classes knows exactly what I’m talking about. If you have recently attended classes, you probably guessed it already. The “clicka-clicka” sound, of course, refers to a backpack on wheels. Your average non-traditional student always looks like she is on the way to the airport.

Characteristics of the Non-Traditional Student:
1) Backpack on Wheels
2) Water Bottle the Size of an Above-Ground Pool in Hand
3) More Life Experience Than Everyone Else, Paired With the Inability to Keep It to Oneself

God love non-traditional students. They wheel around every book from everyclass every day, no matter what classes they have. By definition, a backpack should not have wheels. A backpack on wheels is LUGGAGE.

Webster defines “non-traditional student” as: n. One who goes back to college after many years in order to earn a degree, wheel around a backpack, and ask a bunch of stupid questions. Not Webster the dictionary guy; Webster Baxter, my alter-alter-ego.

With any luck, you will not be seated near a non-traditional student (NTS). The seat most likely to be occupied by an NTS is in the front row, very middle. These are known as the “obnoxious question seats”. Teachers tend to avoid standing directly in front of these seats, sometimes opting to lecture from an adjoining room.

99.5 times out of 78, an NTS is recently divorced and eager to share the experience in all its gory details. After hearing time and time again how piggish these ex-husbands are, I have decided to become a feminist lesbian libertarian. Also, I disagree with Miley Cyrus’ outfit choices, but I choose to let my teenage daughter listen to her anyway.

The NTS always seems to graduate with a ridiculous GPA of 6.5 or greater. Though not mathematically possible, many teachers will give a grade of “A++++” to avoid ever seeing an NTS again.

By the end of my freshman year, I could hear “clicka-clicka” from 500 feet and duck into a supply closet in plenty of time. I learned how to pick up the scent of hand sanitizer from across the library and blend in with a shelf of Young Adult Fiction with ease.

An NTS has a distinction from the rest of society: despite always having 10 quart-size Ziploc bags of granola and dried fruit, she weighs 350 pounds. The NTS’s body is designed to store up extra fat so that, when the time has come to ask insufferable questions and argue with the teacher, she will be able to do so without sleeping or considering anyone else’s college experience.

The Awkward Moment

February 6, 2012 2 comments

My most recent experience with an office restroom today evoked many emotions: joy, fear, pensive delight. . .

The worst part of public restrooms has got to be the mystery flush. So here I am, walking into the bathroom. As I push the hinged door, I hear a toilet flush. I look directly at the back of the head of someone washing his hands. So many thoughts rush through my mind:

“Does he have a hairy back?”

“Is he looking at me in the mirror? Please, God, don’t let him look me in the eye through the mirror. I don’t know you, and you don’t know me, Dean.”

“Which toilet did he use? Is he standing tall, as is the stature of a man who had exercised dominance over a urinal? No, that sounds like a stall. Which stall was it? Man, it stinks in here. Did he use the roomier handicap stall, or the cozier able-bodied stall? Let’s see, he’s wearing a suit and tie, so he probably likes the executive feel of the handicap throne. On the other hand, he’s probably a manager, and can appreciate efficiency, leading him to the small one. I should NOT have stopped at McDonald’s last night. Door Number One or Door Number Two? Haha, I just said ‘Number Two’. Gee-whiz, grow up, self. Oh, now I said ‘whiz’. Where was I? Yes, the stalls. Big one, small one? Left hand, right hand, please god don’t let the seat be warm. Oh (King James Capital) LORD, it feels like the Bahamas on my cheeky nethers.”

Has anyone else gone through this?

All the Things I Wish I Could Say

April 27, 2010 2 comments

Sorry to have so quickly fallen off the blogging wagon after my expressed desire to post at least a little something every day.  I developed an eating disorder on accident after I fell into a bathtub of Slim-Fast.  French Vanilla. I haven’t eaten in a week because I was floating face down in a foot of 50 calories a serving and 26 vitamins and minerals.

Actually, Claire and I have been helping to watch my nephew and 2 nieces while my sister is in the hospital after having her 4th child.  Welcome to the world, baby Brayden!

Now, I’m sure you’re expecting the usual anti-child diatribe associated with the topic.  That will come later.  If I’ve ever said a nice thing on this blog (and I haven’t), it is that, while watching 3 children for a few days has not increased my desire to have children of my own (God forbid), it has greatly increased my desire to spend time with those particular great kids.  There.  Now put your Kleenex away.  I’m not going to say anything else nice, so sit down and shut up.

Now, I bring the reason you all showed up today! . . . I promised free pizza.  Well guess what?  I lied.  While you’re here, though, go ahead and read what’s below.

I said all that to say this: there are lots of things I wish I could say on here, but do not say because they might be a little questionable (and many of them make reference to fecal matter).  Therefore, I will not actually say these things, but I will only go so far as to tell you what I will never say.  That way, we can both have a clean conscience about it.  Begin.

“I can totally respect people who still own and love pit bulls.  You know, more children are taken to the hospital for chihuahua bites than for pit bull bites.  Of course, they still have their faces after a chihuahua bite.”

“Listening to Justin Bieber’s music feels like the devil is clawing his way into my body through my ears, sliding down into my chest, and farting on my soul.”

“I think the reason I like eating veal so much is because I know it grew up in a restrictive cage.  Just like me.”

“I was halfway into a profanity-laced rant when I stopped, looked around, and said to myself, ‘Don’t be so hard on them.  They’re just kindergarteners.'”

“Dave Ramsey must be a very smart guy to be able to help so many millions of people get out of debt!  I only have one question: If you’re so smart, then where’s your hair, Mr. Smart Guy?”

“I think calling the Wii controller attachment a ‘Nunchuk’ is really a misnomer.  It did nothing to protect me from those ninjas.”

“So, if there’s a rabbit that has an unusally high amount of babies, what do other rabbits say it ‘breeds like’?”

Under 500 words. Mission accomplished.

Hard Drive to Format

April 20, 2010 Leave a comment

I’m really going to do it this time!  It’s my goal to tantalize your senses with shorter posts more often.  What I lack in quality, I will more than make up in quantity!  If it can’t be good, gosh-darn it, I’m going to flood the Interspace with nearly-palatable crap.

This is merely an announcement.  I have no intention of writing 500 words or more, as is my custom.

Oh, and somewhere along the way, this blog passed 20,000 views. So, feel free to pat me on the back or send a few lottery tickets my way.

I’ll leave you with a few thoughts:

I think it’s just a matter of time before we find out Cap’n Crunch was never in the U.S. Navy at all.

It’s high time we do something to enforce the Child Labor Laws in the country.  Let’s put these kids to work!

Sometimes, I get the sneaking suspicion that Lady Gaga is not really human, but is, in fact, an otherworldly visitor from the planet Goofballs.

So wait, let me get this straight: Conan O’Brien left NBC because Jay Leno was going to push his show back a half-hour.  Then, TBS signs Conan and pushes George Lopez back an entire hour.  My point is this . . . TBS still exists?  I haven’t seen it in quite a while, but I assume the programming still consists of Matlock for the first 12 hours of the day, followed by 12 hours of Family Matters.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

Farewell.

Potpourri

March 14, 2010 2 comments

I know you missed me!  After 3 months (if you can believe it) off, I’m making my glorious return to the Internet.  All World-Wide Web traffic (as my great-grandmother calls it) has come to a screeching halt and been involved in a 25 car pileup in anticipation of this post. How lucky you are to be seeing this with your eyes!  I’m not sure what else you’d be seeing this with, except maybe a bionic eye that can peer through man’s soul, but you’re still lucky.

I decided I should update you so you can be so inspired to go out and do something meaningful with your life, as I am, instead of eating Cheetos on a recliner watching reruns of “Touched By An Angel”, as I am. Darn it.  I just love Della Reese.  She’s so stinking soulful.

In the past 3 months, I have mostly just been working. I’ve put in many hours of overtime, and saved up for my James Bond trunks. Claire and I are going Mexico this summer!  We were able to book our hotel and flights.  The amazing part about the Internet is you are able to put in a request for your particular seat on any given flight.  We specifically asked for the seats behind crying infants and in front of ADD children with sporadic outbursts of violence.  Nothing like a headlock from a 6-year-old with a 30-second attention span.

The James Bond trunks are, in fact, a compromise between Claire and me.  I pushed vehemently for a Speedo®, and she pushed back with similar disdain, and offered a suggestion of board shorts. Though I have knock-knees best reserved for viewing under ankle length board shorts (or in a pinch, a burquini), I came to the realization that I am married.  I don’t have to look good anymore for anyone.  Especially my wife.  She’s supposed to love me, even if I have a belly hanging over my Speedo© that reaches my knee.

That’s the beauty of marriage, friends. I can completely let myself go and have full confidence that my wife will never leave me.  She may opt to sleep in an entirely different room, but we’re still in the same house and, by law, that constitutes a fully operational marriage.  It is my personal recommendation that every person hit the gym, starve yourself thin, and find a reasonably attractive mate that will accept you for who you want them to think you are.  Then, release all bodily responsibility, and give your heart a run for its money with all the bacon grease your can fit into a paper cup.  I’m just kidding!  Of course I don’t expect you to hit the gym. That, however, should not stop you from buying the Speedo™ of your dreams.

If you also would like to drop a cool $138.00 on swim trunks that throw modesty to the wind, please visit *link removed*. On second thought, you probably shouldn’t go looking for them.  They are quite form-fitting and inelegant for those who are not in shape or decidedly French.  I might be just as well-off to purchase a Speedo£.

In the past 3 months, I have also taken to overeating.  This comes as no shock to those of you who have followed this blog for any length of time. Though I bested my personal record with an impressive 19 tacos, I was put to shame by a gentleman who was able to consume 26.  He later died.

This last weekend, I wanted to see if On The Border’s all-you-can-eat enchiladas were really worth the money.  My friends, they were and more.  I recommend you have your stomach pumped, then visit this establishment for the enchilada deal.  Then, promptly have your stomach pumped again.  I’ve heard some hospitals offer a 2-for-1 deal.  I cannot be blamed for any resulting injury or bowel obstruction caused by enchilada overload.

In other news, I still absolutely enjoy my job.  It affords me the personal ego massage that comes with helping people.  I am able to offer more joy than Disneyland, Harry Potter, and Hulu combined.

It comes as a great shock to myself that I can honestly say I have used my experience from my previous employment to better my performance in my current employment.  Bagging groceries is the single greatest job experience one could ask for, apparently.  For instance, when someone has a question I am unable to answer, I simply ask, “Paper or plastic?”  The ensuing confusion gives me enough time to throw my smoke bomb and escape to my Fortress of Solitude.

Finally, my friends, I want to issue an offical apology for being away for so long.  I am so sorry for depriving you of laughter, kindness, and bemoaning Miley Cyrus for 3 long months.  Please know I lived well during my absence and did not forget you.  I just wanted you to miss me.  Is that too much to ask?  (That is a rhetorical question.)  I’m glad that we are together once again.  And don’t forget the most important point of all: there is a sale on Speedo¢∞¼ products at amazon.com.