Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mirror Mirror

Not long after my wife and I moved into our first apartment in Texas, a new plaza sprang up about half a mile down the road. It was named Ajax Plaza, after what was then–and may still be–the only business there: Ajax Mirror Superstore. I used to bitch about this every single day as we drove past it. A mirror superstore. What the hell is wrong with us? What does it say about our vanity as a nation that we allow such an establishment to exist? Where are the torch-bearing mobs from Frankenstein and The Phantom of the Opera?

I find it even more relevant that this store exists in Texas, because there is no place in the world more obsessed with its own image. Here’s a simple test: if you suspect you may be in Texas, look around you; if you don’t see a picture of Texas, or a Texas flag, or at the very least, a giant beveled star, you are not in Texas. This information is crucial to Native Texans–the Real Chosen People®–whose religion considers it a sin against Texas to leave the state (or, as about a third of its residents–including its governor–seem to believe, the Nation). Because Texas is a vast expanse, and much of it is an empty wasteland, its residents need almost constant reassurance that they have not inadvertently strayed from its precious boundaries into basically anywhere else, where people don’t give a shit that they’re from Texas.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Give Me Some Credit

I signed up for a credit card recently, because that’s what you have to do now if you can’t afford something right this second–it used to be called layaway, but we’re too goddamn impatient for that bullshit anymore. Save up? What the fuck does that mean? Not spend my money now? What are you, some kind of fiscal terrorist? You un-American bastard.

So I signed up for this credit card, and when the first statement came, there was this little brochure with it that said “You’ve earned the credit. Now you can protect it!” Credit insurance! Two of my favorite things, now in one convenient package!

Thank God for that. Now I can spend scads of money I don’t have, and I don’t have to worry about damaging my credit rating if I also get my ass fired! Otherwise, I’d have to deal with my credit score ripping up my furniture and pissing on my floor, and then I’d have to get a job at the Renaissance Fair. Apparently.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Count Me Out

Someone told me today that the Census Bureau has a PSA featuring Dora the Explorer. The first coherent thought I was able to have was “what the fuck?” I think that, first of all, if I were trying to decide whether or not to fill out my census form, and I saw a commercial in which a cartoon character from a children’s network tried to convince me to do so, I would throw it the fuck away. Then I would move to a country that took itself seriously.

I have to admit that I haven’t seen it yet–hence my ability still to type coherently–but I’ve discovered so far that it’s part of a campaign called “Children Count, Too,” which attempts to counteract the apparently common problem of parents who forget to count their young children when filling out the census form. Fair enough–maybe–but who are they marketing this to? Are there children filling out the census form? If so, this could help to eliminate the error of not counting oneself, a common mistake among children, especially those under the age of five, who HAVE NO BUSINESS FILLING OUT A FUCKING CENSUS FORM.

Or do they expect these children to take on the responsibility of reminding their parents to count them? If you can’t remember how many children you have, the answer should be zero, because you are a shitty parent.