We all have them. They are the things we make sure to hide before the guests arrive. Why we keep them, even we cannot say, but there they are, in the back of the closet, on basement shelves, hidden behind the Tylenol in the medicine cabinet. So just in case any of you ever end up in my house I want you to know I have these things. I tell you for three reasons. First, I think it may be cathartic. Second, I don't like picking up things around the house, and this way I won't have to; if you see any of the following items, you'll simply nod and say, "Oh yeah, I remember he said he had that." Third, I don't have any other ideas for a blog entry.
Things I'm Embarrassed to Own
It's not that I don't support the NYPD; I'm sure they're fine folks. The reason this hat is embarrassing is because it was at one time trendy, and I don't typically approve of trendy things. I never wore parachute pants as a kid, I still don't know the Macarena, and I never bothered to buy one of those cool hats Sam Jackson likes to wear. I got this hat at the same time anyone else who owns one got theirs--just after 9/11 when it was a very popular thing to wait in long lines at gas stations, fantasize about bombing the Arab world to smithereens (maybe that was just me?), and wear goofy looking hats. Then, like two weeks later, most of us came to our senses and so now this hat hangs on a hook beneath three others.
I wish I could tell you that I have this book because when I was a child Mr. T was awesome and I was a very hip kid who couldn't get enough Mr. T from The A-Team and that sorry excuse for a cartoon he made. Nope. I'm pretty sure I picked this one up at a library sale when I was in my late teens. It's not completely worthless, however. Any book that contains the line, "If you wash up more often, you won't have to grab your crotch," can never be worthless.
This, for the unititated, is a fajita maker. Like most embarrassing things, this at one time looked pretty sweet. Who wouldn't want something that could make fajitas? Fajitas are decicious. But then I used the fajita maker and discovered two things: It was hard to clean, and the only thing it could make was fajitas. By contrast, my stove, when combined with a pan, could make fajitas, was fairly easy to clean, and could also be used to make other meals. The fajita maker currently resides between an electric skillet and a wok on a shelf in the basement.
4. This is a board game called Can You Beat Ken? The Ken being Ken Jennings of Jeopardy and Mormon fame. I think I may have gotten the game as a gag gift, but it's still embarrassing because rather than throw it out or sell it at a garage sale, I have stored it with all my awesome games like Stratego, Trivial Pursuit, Balderdash, and electronic football. I don't remember how to play the game, but I am fairly certain that the answer to the question is "No, I cannot beat Ken."
Another book. The truth is I could easily make a list of only books and it would far exceed seven. I use Who Moved My Cheese here as a representation of the many self-help books I own. I am one of the millions who own How to Win Friends and Influence People. (But I must say that I felt a little slimy reading it even the first time, when I was probably fifteen. Whenever I meet someone who smiles at me and calls me by my first name the first time we meet, I can't help but wonder if he's recalling the lessons in Carnegie's magnum opus.) Self-help books are just cheesy, this one especially so. (God, I hope someone appreciated that, cause I'm mighty proud of that pun.)
I hate American Idol with an intensity that rivals my loathing of that impenetrable plastic within which toy manufacturers encase their products. So this Bo Bice CD was the perfect gag gift to get me. I've never listened to it. I've never even taken the cellophane off the thing. But I haven't pitched it either. Bo Bice is waiting for me to come around, and he's penetrating my soul with those steely eyes.
I don't even know what to say about this. Someone gave it to me and by even putting it on this list, I'm probably offending that person. The best thing I can say about it is that I will probably love it someday.
Like, when I'm seventy.
Non included in this list: Tucks Medicated Pads. Don't ask.