The Book of Despair

  1. In the beginning there was the Uncaring Universe. And the Uncaring Universe did not give a shit about you or your problems
  2. And, behold, the Uncaring Universe did look upon the vastness of space and say “that’s a lot of room. I should put some shit there”. And the Uncaring Universe did shit upon the space.
  3. And when the Uncaring Universe had shat upon space, it gazed upon its shit and it did say “Meh. Good enough”
  4. The Uncaring Universe did gaze upon its shit and it saw that one of the pieces was a little less shitty than the rest.  And it said “I should do something about that.  I will create Man and place him upon the less shitty world that he may cause the world to be more shitty.
  5. And the Uncaring Universe did place man upon the face of the Earth that he may go forward, multiply, and cause The Earth to be shitty.
  6. And shit happened
  7. And one day Ian the Campbell was born.  And behold, that was bullshit, because that was not his real name
  8. And Ian, whose name was bullshit, did grow into a man
  9. And Ian, whose name was bullshit, did wax wise in the sophistry of men.
  10. And behold, Ian, whose name was bullshit, did inflict his sophistry upon willing readers
  11. And thus he spake unto his willing readers
  12. “Willing Readers, this I desirest thou to know:
  13. People Suck
  14. When someone you’re not related to welcomes you to “The Family”, turn and run like a son of a bitch
  15. Whenever a manager uses the word “proactive” in a sentence, you know something is about to suck
  16. If wishes were fishes we’d have some to fry
    1. (Corollary)  Actually, If wishes were fishes, they’d probably all get that disease where the fish literally puke their guts out and die and float to the top and all the other fish would devour the dead fish–or wish–in an orgy of cannibalism.
  17. If someone preemptively assures you that something isn’t going to happen, you can count on it happening
    1. (Corollary) If someone preemptively assures you of anything, then they are full of shit.
    2. (Corollary) If someone preemptively asserts that they are or are not something then they probably are, or are not exactly that thing
  18. The bigger the pickup, the bigger the asshole at the wheel
    1. (Corollary) The bigger the pickup, the smaller the penis on the asshole at the wheel
  19. Suicidal teenagers are fucking annoying
  20. Teenagers who think they are Vampires are fucking annoying
  21. Teenagers are fucking annoying
  22. They have mobile phone coverage on the Summit of Mt. Everest now.  Climbing Mt. Everest has jumped the shark.
    1. (Corollary) The phrase “jumped the shark” has, itself, jumped the shark
  23. The driver’s side windshield wiper will always wear out before the passenger-side
  24. The shitty-ness of the music is directly related to the loudness to which a teenager will feel compelled to turn up the volume
  25. The internet is full of shit
    1. (Corollary) People on the internet tend to be full of shit as well
    2. (Corollary) …and they don’t know when to sit down and shut up
  26. Everyone thinks that no-one loves music as much as they do
  27. When picking up a take-out order from a restaurant, the special order you have to double-check before leaving will be at the very bottom of the bag
  28. In the parking lot, that stupid person meandering aimlessly in front of you will be parked right next to you
    1. (Corollary) They will also drive the way they walk
  29. Whenever someone comes into your office, the most embarrassing song on your your iPod will come up in shuffle.  No matter how many un-embarrassing songs there are to choose from.
  30. Nothing profound has ever been said on Twitter
  31. Nothing profound will ever be said on Twitter
  32. The further away from New York you were on 9/11/2001, the more likely you are to wax rhapsodic with affected pathos about The World Trade center on any given 9/11.
  33. Everybody thinks that they are more like grumpy cat than anybody else
  34. Wikipedia:  A million nerds can’t be wrong
  35. Unless they’re talking about women, in which case a million nerds are always wrong
  36. All internet comments sections are headed to the same destination:  a huge dick-waving contest.
  37. You will hit every light green when you just need 10 more seconds to finish surreptitiously sending that text message from your car.
  38. Everybody thinks the drivers in their town are worse than everybody else’s town.  The truth is everybody is a bad driver everywhere.
  39. Jaywalkers will always run across the two lanes you’re not in, then walk across the lane you are in
  40. Any person who declares that they were educated at “the school of hard knocks” or “the school of life” on Facebook is 99% likely to not only be catastrophically ignorant, but also noisily proud of their own ignorance.

Nighttime Stroll Around the Neighborhood

Nighttime Stroll Around the Neighborhood

I am not a thin man. Once I stood on the talking scale at a local supermarket and it very deliberately said “You are…” and then paused for effect before completing the insult, “portly”. Like most men of a voluptuous build, I tend to snore. I snore so loudly that it breaks window panes.

In the neighbor’s house.

Of my friend.

Who lives out of town.

In a different country.

This little tale took place on one of my worst nights sawing logs. Like the considerate husband that I am, I gathered my blanket and my teddy bear and my Popeye nightlight and headed down stairs for the sofa and fell asleep in the Ian-shaped dent on the third cushion to the right. Sometime in the night, I woke up thinking I was hearing my kids talking upstairs. As is my custom, I didn’t open my eyes–I didn’t want to take that step towards committing to being awake. Soon though I decided I needed to go upstairs and find out why my kids were awake at 2:30 in the morning. I opened my eyes and the world very slowly came into focus the way it does in cheesy TV shows and movies. As I lay there, facing the front door across the room, I realized that I was seeing something different. There was a lot of light coming in through the crack between the door and the frame. “No wonder it costs a million dollars to heat and cool my house,” I thought.

Slowly it began to dawn on me that the voices were not coming from upstairs but rather from the front door. So I nimbly hopped off the couch. After pulling myself off the floor which is where I always land when I nimbly hop off anything, the spell of the optical illusion had been broken and I realized the gap in my door was in fact the porch light streaming through a wide-open front door.

I shut the door and headed back toward the couch. After tripping over the cat, I flopped back into the Ian-shaped dent and snuggled in. “At least,” one part of my mind said, “at least the stupid cat didn’t get out.”

Then the more intelligent part of mind said “Hey, dumbass,” it always calls me dumbass. We have that kind of relationship. “Hey dumbass, you have two cats. One for each child. Remember? In addition to this charming creature, there’s also an orange tabby named Blü. Tell me again why did you let a five-year-old name your pet?”

Blue the Cat

Blü the Cat

“Oh shit,” my actual mouth said, “Blü!”

I nimbly leapt off the couch again, picked myself up off the floor, thundered around the house and quickly confirmed that Blü was AWOL. I took a deep breath then hobbled my way to the door, hero wind majestically rippling my penguin pajamas and blowing through my bald spot.

The walkway from my porch to the driveway was relatively free of debris, so I quickly found the imbecile creature lying like the King of the World up against the garage door. He rolled over a bit exposing his furry white tummy and broke out in purring. I took two steps toward him and he spun onto his feet and fled down the driveway, darting beneath a mini-van always at moorings with its great bulbous ass half-blocking my wife’s side of the driveway.

So here I am, it’s nearly 3 am, in the moderately nice part of a moderate-sized American urban nightmare wandering around the street in penguin pajamas and a t-shirt that didn’t fit ten years ago, like a a middle-aged alzheimer’s victim, climbing under the neighbor’s minivan going “kitty? kiiity. kiitty. goddamit you fuckin animal. kiiiiitty. Bluuuuuey?” The only thing missing was underpants on my head.

Blü the Cat

Blü the Cat

Eventually the cat skittered out from under the mini-van and went to ground in the gutter in front of my house. I dragged myself off of the street and determinedly padded down the street toward this miserable beloved creature that was merrily chirping to himself, rolling around, taking a dust-bath in the gutter. This time I reached him. I tried to decide if I was going to pick him up or throttle him. Either way, I stretched out my hand. I felt fur brush my fingertips. In a flash the son-of-bitch was running across the “desert landscaping” which is required in my neck of the woods. Running barefoot through dew-moistened grass might paint a romantic image, but running barefoot through desert landscaping mostly paints pain, with blood as the medium. And paint I did.

I followed blü with absolute determination, across the yard and onto the porch where he reclined luxuriantly against the front door. If he’d been smoking a pipe and reading the evening newspaper, the picture would have been complete. This time, the furry little shit whom I love allowed me to pick him up and carry him inside

Ridiculous creature.

And the cat sucks too.

About the Author

About the Author: Ian is a 3rd generation native of Southern Nevada, where he lives today in a quiet suburban neighborhood with his wife of twenty years and their two sons. Ian has earned his bread in a variety of occupations including stocking a beer freezer, mixing and pouring concrete, being a roadie for a synth punk band in San Francisco in the early 90's, being a not-very-well-known hard rock DJ, scenic carpentry, theatrical lighting design, theatrical sound design, playing Ku Klux Klan Member #5 in a professional production of "Grover", and writing for an virtually unknown, subversive, underground blog called Radio Free Las Vegas. .

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