100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 96

Posted on March 13, 2007

96. I’m a shallow enough person that when I see someone fall down — and I mean fall down spectacularly, preferably with arms flailing and maybe a cartoony “Whoa…whoop, whoop!” sound effect — I can’t help but chuckle on the inside. After all, I’m only human.

That being said, I briefly dated a girl in college who fell down all the time. I don’t know if she was just clumsy or if she had poor balance or what, but we literally couldn’t walk from the campus dining hall back to her dorm without her wiping out at least once. We’re talking full-scale banana peel, flat-on-your-ass falls, too. Fortunately (and somewhat miraculously), she never injured herself. Heck, I even caught her a few times. What can I say? I’m romantic like that.

At first, I have to admit that I felt really sorry for her. I’m sure the whole ordeal was embarrassing, not to mention painful. As the weeks went by, however, and I saw her fall down dozens of times with no injuries, it all started getting funnier and funnier. It was like I was dating one of the Three Stooges, only with a better hairdo. Before long, I found myself snickering every time I helped her back to her feet. Then giggling. Then laughing. Then, I believe the appropriate term is “chortling.”

Believe it or not, we stopped seeing each other not long after that. I think it had something to do with me being the worst human being on the face of the Earth. Sometimes, I think back on that relationship and it plays out like a montage in my mind — a montage of magnificent spills accompanied by a laugh track and the Benny Hill theme.

Then again, maybe she was put into my life for a reason. Instead of teaching me to be a more mature person, however, the relationship only shined a light on the fact that I’m a total sociopath.

Oh, well. I guess I can live with that.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 14 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 95

Posted on March 6, 2007

94. When I was a kid, I had a security pillow instead of a security blanket. I named him…Mr. Sucky. You know, because I used to hold him while I sucked my thumb. Looking back, I imagine my parents must have gotten quite a few laughs out of good ol’ Mr. Sucky.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 4 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 94

Posted on February 26, 2007

94. I never learned to play a musical instrument, but I possess the uncanny ability to pick out the tune to “(Way Down Upon the) Swanee River” on anything from a Fisher-Price keyboard to a piccolo. Just give me fifteen minutes of painful trial and error, and it’s on!

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 3 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 93

Posted on February 8, 2007

93. I’m really bad at what most people consider typical “guy things.” You know — working with tools, doing anything vaguely mechanical, understanding electronics, and so forth. For instance, while I can drive a nail on a good day, I’m more or less helpless beyond that. Another example: I have no idea how my cable box, VCR, and DVD player all connect to my television. The cable guy set up the whole mess of wires three years ago, and I’ve been afraid to touch it ever since. God forbid I ever need to add another peripheral.

I’m especially clueless when it comes to cars, though. When I take my Honda in for a routine oil change, the mechanic invariably comes back fifteen minutes later saying, “Looks like your rear radial accelerator axle belt is misaligned. That’s gonna run you about $1,500 to fix. Should we go ahead and get started?” I’m starting to suspect they can smell my “guy” ignorance a mile away.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 8 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 92

Posted on February 2, 2007

92. The most ridiculous job I’ve ever had was back in college when I worked as a Tommy Hilfiger “fragrance model” for a few weeks. Basically, I was that person who wanders around the department store spraying cologne on little cards and attempting to pawn them off on unwitting shoppers. Or, to put it another way, I was a scented magazine insert come to life, just dying to tell you all about the complimentary tote bag available for a limited time only if you’d just buy a bottle of Tommy cologne today.

Most shoppers recoiled in fear and disgust when I offered them a card doused with Tommy cologne, shouting “No, thank you!” over their shoulders as they ran away to hide in the shoe department. In other words, they reacted just slightly more positively than if they had been offered a vial containing a live strain of the bubonic plague. Others started yelling about their allergies when they saw me approach, and I can’t really blame them. By the end of my shift, I inevitably ended up with watery eyes and a skull-crushing sinus headache thanks to the noxious wares I peddled.

To add insult to injury, I also had to sell the “Tommy look.” This meant dressing head to toe in Tommy Hilfiger couture, which at the time consisted primarily of button-up shirts emblazoned with unspeakably gaudy red, blue, and yellow flags and chinos featuring an almost implausible number of pleats. Such a fetching look, don’t you think?

Needless to say, it wasn’t the most fulfilling job I’ve ever worked, but as a poor college sophomore, I certainly couldn’t complain about making $15 an hour. Plus, I can’t overemphasize the added bonus of being able to spend the rest of my life telling stories that start out, “Back when I was a fragrance model…”

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 6 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 91

Posted on February 1, 2007

91. Thanks to a lack of practice over the past decade, I’ve basically forgotten how to write in cursive. Beyond my signature (which is more a series of squiggles than actual handwriting), I find myself hard-pressed to pen even a single sentence in cursive script without the end result looking like the handiwork of a second-grader hopped up on Pixie Stix. Don’t even ask me how to make an uppercase “Q”; apparently, it’s now locked deep in the recesses of my mind alongside the French I can no longer speak and the calculus I can no longer comprehend.

This is just further support for my zero-sum theory of learning: for every new bit of knowledge or skill acquired, another is lost. Thank goodness it was only cursive writing this time around and not something important like tying my shoes.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 7 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 90

Posted on January 28, 2007

90. When I was nine years old, I ruined my parents’ collection of Beach Boys 45s — and my own turntable — because I was certain I could learn to cut and scratch like a hip-hop DJ if I set my mind to it. I can’t recall Phase Two of my plan, but I assume it involved finding an MC willing to bust a few rhymes over the looped guitar riff from “Help Me, Rhonda.”

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 5 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 89

Posted on January 24, 2007

89. When I read a magazine, I literally read the entire magazine. Cover to cover, word for word. Every article, every column, every caption, every little sidebar. In order — no skipping around. It’s like a compulsion.

As you can imagine, this makes choosing the right magazine crucial. Do I really want to subscribe to Time if it means I’ll have to read their latest “Search for the Historical Jesus” cover story every three months?*

These days, I gravitate toward Entertainment Weekly and Wired (I started reading the former to seem hip and the latter to seem intelligent). I’ll also confess a shameful love of Blender’s substandard, Q-inspired coverage of the music industry. I also read my wife’s Real Simple from time to time, but let’s keep that on the down-low.

*Seriously, do Time and Newsweek just have a stacks of these historical Jesus features lying around their offices, ready to publish in case of a slow news cycle?

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 5 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 88

Posted on January 22, 2007

88. I always keep a pair of Groucho Marx novelty glasses handy — you know, just in case. I’ve found that there aren’t many problems in life that a pair of Groucho glasses can’t remedy. For instance, let’s say you’re stuck in traffic. Just grab the Groucho glasses from the glove compartment, put ‘em on, and the time flies by. Plus, it’s a source of entertainment for all the other motorists when they glance over and notice the gleam from your plastic nose.

The best use I’ve found for Groucho glasses, however, is as a teaching aid. Last semester, for instance, I was preparing to deliver an incredibly boring lecture to my class. I mean, this lecture was so mind-numbing that I was falling asleep just writing it. So, at the last minute, I donned the Groucho glasses and taught class wearing them. Sure, it was still a boring lecture, but it’s hard to fall asleep when your instructor keeps sneezing because he’s allergic to his own fake mustache.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 1 Comment

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 87

Posted on January 19, 2007

87. I have an unhealthy obsession with scented candles.

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100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 86

Posted on December 22, 2006

86. I have really small hands for a guy. So small, in fact, that I have to wear women’s gloves to fit them. Ergo, I avoid gloves whenever possible since they make me feel self-conscious about the whole “tiny hands” thing.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 15 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 85

Posted on December 11, 2006

85. Both my wife and I can be overly competitive at times. Unfortunately, I combine my over-competitiveness with a penchant for trash talk. As a result, we’re very careful about placing ourselves in competitive situations.

Monopoly was the first casualty of my over-competitiveness. Apparently, I’m “too greedy and evil” when I play the board game, and I “ruin it for everyone else.” I thought that was the entire point of Monopoly.

More recently, mini-golf was also ticked off the list. Kourtney and I were playing a round about a year ago, and we were neck and neck going into the final hole. Unfortunately, her shot hit an embankment, rolled off the astroturf putting green, and fell into the artificially-blue creek running alongside the hole. Of course, I did what came naturally and declared with mock sincerity, “Aww…glub, glub.” You know, ’cause that’s the sound a golf ball would make if it were drowning.

I thought she was going to wrap her putter around my head. Needless to say, we don’t play much mini-golf anymore.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 6 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 84

Posted on November 29, 2006

84. My favorite fashion faux pas is the trusty flannel shirt. I realize it’s not 1993 anymore, but I keep four or five flannels tucked away in the back of my closet, just in case they ever come back into style.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 4 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 83

Posted on November 24, 2006

83. If I ever become a club DJ, my stage name is going to be DJ Jessassin. You know, like “Jess” plus “assassin.”

It’s okay to be jealous.

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 8 Comments

100 Facts in 100 Days: Fact 82

Posted on November 21, 2006

82. I have an unspoken rule against discussing movies I’ve just watched until after I have exited the theater lobby and I’m on my way to the car. I really get a kick out of critiquing movies — even movies that I enjoy — and I always feel like a pretentious jerkface discussing something like poor character development when the other people filing out of the theater are saying, “I liked the part where things blew up.”

Posted by Jess | Filed Under 100 Facts | 4 Comments

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