He Knows When You Have Been Naughty

Twas many nights before Christmas and there was a small boy who did not like the Holiday Season. He loathed and despised everything about it. He’d prefer if the exchange of gifts, the hanging of the greens, and the stockings hung by the chimney with care, would disappear, chalked up as another failed marketing ploy. “Cooking goose and hanging ornaments on a dead tree are just silly things, no one really enjoys them. And the music, the singing! Mom do we really have to listen to another version of bells going ding-dang-dong? They are all such silly songs.”
“You used to sing every line.”
“I was a kid then Mom.”
“You’re still a kid. You’re only 9.”
“Whatever, Mom.” He snarled and scorned from the backseat of the car looking at the brightly lit houses. The Merricks had their reindeer out on the front lawn; the Thorndikes had once again covered their garage with multi-colored lights that twinkled. ‘Waste of electricity. Don’t they know that the world is in an energy crisis, yet still everything must glow’ the boy thought. Even the Muellers’ house, simply lit with a single candle in every window, made him grumble with discontent.
“Why do we have to go out tonight? I was about to beat the evil knight.
“Well I have to get a few things, and I wasn’t about to leave you alone. Your father won’t be back ‘til eight or so.”
“But it’s going to be packed tonight.”
“Yes, but there will be carolers and chiming bells and Santa too.”
“Who cares, it’s just some guy in a red suit with nothing else to do.”
“True, but he still works for Santa. See, there are so many children that Santa can’t keep track of them all. So he hires people to watch them at the malls.
“Santa is not real, Mom. He’s make-believe.”
“I wouldn’t say that so close to Christmas Eve, honey.”
“Whatever Mom. How long are…” The little boy was about to gripe and complain more about Yuletide and the Season of Giving when next to him appeared a creature clad in dark rags. Willowy hair fell from a long gaunt face where a protruding brow rose to cover a sunken pair of red eyes. From the sides of his head emerged two twisted reindeer horns. And in his hand was a staff where vicious switches of wood extended from one end. The small boy began to raise a tremendous clatter.
“Oh please do stop that. It won’t do you an iota of good, young man”
“Get away from me! Mom! Help me!
“She can’t hear you. Only I can, and because I can, Santa can.”
“Santa’s not real. He’s just like fairies!”
“You josh. You know lying is not a good thing to do.” The creature said raising a corner of his lip revealing yellowed teeth. “It gets you in – well it gets you to meet me. Allow me to introduce myself, my name is…”
“I know you.”
“Interrupting people is rude. Sinful really, quite crude. So you know who I might be, hmmm. Care to enlighten me?”
“You’re the Devil!” screamed the little boy, tugging at the seat belt to be as far away from this creature as possible.
“Me? The Devil? Oh that’s a good one. Lucifer? Heaven forbid! Does it look like I have wings kid? Absolutely not. Wings, ha! Never wanted them either. O, the backaches you get from those things. And the mites, not even going to start on that, neither. And please stop trying to get out of your seat. Something happens to you, Old Man Kringle will have my hairy seat.” The creature reached over and relocked the boy in. Struggling away from the beast, the boy caught a whiff of candy canes. “There, in nice and tight, I must profess. Now let me introduce myself, I am the one and only, Krampus.”
“Never heard of you.”
“Most of you never do.” The creature said leaning back in the seat and sighing to himself. “You all hear about the elves and the reindeer. But poor old Krampus has been forgotten through the years.”
“So why come here? ”
“To give you a healthy dose of fear. See, giving coal to naughty girls and boys was one of the many things I enjoyed. I would take you brats away in my sack, too. Toss you in the river, or give you a whack with this here stick of mine.”
“That’s just sick.”
“Maybe for you and your overly sensitive friends, but Santa thinks its time to end all this whining and bickering and disrespect of parents. All of these behaviors, o so aberrant, will cease, and perhaps then a little peace will come at the hands of Santa’s right hand man.”
“So what are you going to do to me?”
“Nothing too heinous, this I can guarantee. St. Nick would never agree to that. No, I’ll knock some fear and holiday cheer into you. Beat you about with this here rod, do the wink, finger aside the nose and nod. Then all will be done.”
“That doesn’t sound like much fun.
“Not for you but it’s a riot for me, son. Now has all I said been understood?”
“I will believe in Santa and I promise I’ll be good.
And as Krampus raised his staff, he smiled at the boy and said, “I think everything is going to be alright, so Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.”

What you have read is real. Krumpus exist here in Europe. Seek him out yourselves.

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posted by Don Taylor @ 12:16 PM, ,

Give Me More Thanks

Yeah so I was going to give an entry of things I was thankful for; you know things like ctrl+z, Turtle, having a full hair and so forth and so on. It seemed kind of boring and preachy and then I got busy. So in its stead I give you this. Eat until you have to go to the next belt noch and suck cranberry sauce through your teeth and smile at the person seating across from you. Gooble-gooble.

posted by Don Taylor @ 5:35 PM, ,

Let's All Go to the Lobby

Two weekends ago, Turtle, a few friends, and I went out to see Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan at a German theatre. Every so often you get a film here that is not dubbed in German. The only problem is that if someone speaks anything other than German or English the subtitles are in German. Looks like I won’t be seeing Apocalypto here.

Seeing the movie made me realize the huge difference between Americans and the rest of the world. Not only through the movie but the experience of going to see the movie itself. This was the weekend that that I had laryngitis, which makes the story all the more funny since I am the one who speaks the most German. I just sat back, shrugged my shoulders when someone looked at me for help and watched the world go by.
Here is the simple comparison --

German Theatre:
Like a sporting event, you purchase the row, aisle and seat you will be occupying
You can get beer or wine at the concession stand.
It cost the same as if you were to get it at a bar.
Before the movie starts vendors come around selling ice cream (ice cream and beer? Who knew?).
No children were at an R rated movie.
No one talked during the movie.
Theatre was clean and had a theme to it – the walls had murals, they used black lights, and the house lights were stage lights.

American Theatre:
Concession costs are elevated to defer some of the national debt.
You get there early only to have the best 40 seats reserved by 2 teenagers waiting for there friends to come from TGIFridays
You can get soda, water, coffee, coolattas, slushies, fruit juices, anything but alcohol.
Talking is a past time in the theatre especially if you are under the age of 19 or over 60.
Children and babies will always be present even if they are showing The Devil in Ms. Jones 69.
The theatres are usually fashioned in up-scale dentist office minus the pile of “Highlights” magazines.
Before the movie, here, you have to rise to the video presentation of the national anthem.

Now about the last little bit, I have no problem rising for the national anthem, I have a problem with the video that is playing underneath it. They have three; I have only seen two, which are entitled “Shock and Awe” and “Historical”. What occurs is a band plays a rendition of the national anthem while you are visually stimulated with clips of, well, bluntly, the US military forces blowing shit up. Bomb after missile. Air strike after cannon volleys. Explosion after oil fire. It pisses me off. This is not my United States. In these videos there is not one scene of home. There is not one picture of say the Red Sox vs. the Yankees, one image of community, one visage of the sandy beaches of California, the BBQ of Memphis, one view of friendliness, of the pursuit of happiness, of the independent spirit. The only images they show of the US itself, is the fall and aftermath of the Twin Towers, W, and when soldiers after four extended tours in Iraq get to see the daughter they don’t know. Other than those 5 seconds all they show is the dark side of how the rest of the world sees us. And that is also what Borat does.

That is why everyone in the movie is suing Sacha Baron Cohen, that and he’s rich be-otch. He is showing the world just how petty, insecure, neurotic, and unstable we are. And no one wants that brought to light, so we all try to subvert it and keep in the closet with the metal Christmas tree our aunt bought us last Xmas. The most frightening thing about the aftermath of the movie is the only group not to sue Cohen is the rodeo, the most prejudiced, apathetic, racist, close-minded, bloodthirsty representation of the US. The same ones who would hoot and holler and ask for their own copy of the “Shock and Awe” version of the national anthem. Fitting ain’t it?

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posted by Don Taylor @ 12:04 PM, ,

Dream A Little Dream

It’s a cold November evening. You are feeling a little tired after a long day of nothing, and keep losing your place reading due sleep knocking at your brain asking to come in. You look at the clock, it reads 11, and you think why not, I can get a full 8 hours of sleep. That will be nice. And off you fall into dream, rather suddenly. Quicker then you can expect.

You wake around four with your bladder pressing against your stomach wall. You get up shuffle your feet along the floor, thankful that the tile is not cold. With your bladder now a pint small you shuffle back to bed, still being thankful for a warm floor and hop back into bed. The bed’s warm, your significant other has not invaded your side of the bed, and all is quiet but you can’t fall back to sleep. Lay this way, no good, that way and your shoulder hurts, this way and your feet fall oddly onto the bed. And then it feels like bugs have taken up residence in your sheets. All of these invisible pests are biting you at the same time. You tell yourself its all your head, there are no bugs biting every part of your body, it’s just different nerve impulses firing randomly. Nonetheless you imagine yourself as prisoner who has been tied down, spread eagle in the desert sun with honey smeared over his body and red ants are digging into you with their sharp mandibles.

All you want it sleep. It’s 4 in the morning for chrissake. To get your mind off the hive of fire ants gnawing at your nether regions you let your mind wander. You lie there and think, hmm what can I do for Christmas cards this year? I could just go buy them and send them out. That would be easy, but hey I have time this year I could do something all my own but what. You begin to think, and being that’s its now 4:30 in the morning you are a little loopy. Not a creature was stirring except the insomniac who made this damn card for you. Smirking, you move on and wonder when Mary was giving birth did she shout out “Jesus Christ, will you get out of there!”? Then you wonder if the phrase ‘Tis the Season to Merry’ is actually ‘Tis the Season to Mary’, and should we all dress like Mary. Even the men. Then another ant bites your toe, so you scratch and think damn it I just want to sleep. I need to sleep.

Need to Sleep, would that be a good band name? Even at 5 in the morning you know its not, so you start rummaging in your head about band names. The Lint Traps, The Two Tonics, The Intangibles, Kapital Knockers, After These Messages, Falling Leaves, The Calvary, Quarter Rest, Laundry Day, CheckPoint Bratwurst, Scarves, In the Mist, Empty Bottles, Biting Ants, Fire Ants, Insomniacs, Frustration, Itchy Ear, Warm Tile, Full Bladder, FUCK FUCK FUCK GIVE ME SOME SLEEP FUCK. You look at the clock, 6 in the morning. Shit. An hour of sleep would be nice. Just a brief nap that would do.

Attempting to clear your mind you think of a white sheet of paper. How can a white sheet of paper be bad? It’s clean, and blank… oooo its blank. I can draw on it. Luckily At that moment another ant crunches into your neck forcing you to refocus on sleep. Because that is all you want is sleep. And then just as you about to give up, the familiar warmth of nocturne takes over carting you away. Ah yes, the harder you try for something, the more thought you put to it the more obstacles you put in your way. I should of known that. Maybe I couldn’t realize it because I was so tired.

Sleep, my old friend, how are you. And as Sleep is about to answer the alarm goes off. Sounding Alarms, maybe that would be a good band name.

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posted by Don Taylor @ 10:30 AM, ,

Time to Up the Dosage

Back in the day, when I was doing the whole ad thing it always made me nuts when people asked me if my job was like the movies they watched; where creatives sat around playing with toys, screaming fuck at the top of the lungs, running around naked and snorting coke off of strippers’ asses at business meetings? Why it was exactly like that, except body shots and interns replace strippers and coke. Then there is a whole other side that no show mentions. I’m not going to get into the whole working on ideas for months on end, watching your youth wave bye-bye to you, getting to experience first hand the card catalogue of psychosomatic physical manifestations, and gaining a wonderful dependence on the cocktail of Ambien, Fluoxetine, Johnny Walker, and Pirate Booty. Nah, what I am going to try to do is explain the whole client-creative relationship in a way that even my 12ft syphilitic monkey will understand. Ready Bobo?

Lets say the whole relationship is, since I’m hungry, a restaurant. Your cast is as follows: the client (the companies that wants you to buy the wares they are peddling) is the proprietor of the bistro. The creatives are the chefs hired to make delicious dishes. And the account execs are the waitstaff. Now the proprietor wants people to come to his restaurant. He’s got a building, a kitchen, a pantry brimming over with food and the remains of his ex-boss, but no idea what needs to be on the menu. Luckily for him, or due to the aligning of Mars and Uranus the place is located in a heavily trafficked area, where curious people are starting to peek in. “Potential customers!” thinks the proprietor as he does his evil little leprechaun dance. He beckons and commands his waitstaff to go find out what they want for a special. “Scout them, feel what kind of people they are,” he orders.

The waiters go out, smooze, take notes with their nicotine stained fingers, smiling their black light sensitive smiles, getting the info they think they need. After a few minutes they go back to the area marked ‘employees only’, and start taping at their laptops trying to find nude images of Scarlett Johannsen and passing on forwards of Pterodactyl sex tapes. When that is done, they work up a spreadsheet with all the details and show it to the proprietor. “Ya see here, they don’t want brussel sprouts or couscous, but chicken sounds good, and half of them want something in a sauce, but they want it to be healthy.” The proprietor scratches his chin then states, “Okay, tell the chefs to make something Italian with a red sauce, because I hate white sauces. They remind me of a medicine I use to take when I was an anemic child living New Hampshire where a cow sat on frog forever ruining the Harry Nilsson song “I Can’t Live Without You” for me.

Excited, the waiter runs into the kitchen which is littered with empty wine bottle and oregano and cooks in the midst of food fight. The waiter divulges to the chefs the daily special the proprietor wants only to have the chefs ask him to tone it down a bit. They both seem to have hangovers. As he repeats in a soft monotone voice, both chefs exchange elated looks that cover their sleep-deprived faces. “This is great. There is so much we can do that is Italian and use a red sauce.” “Yeah I’ve been wanting to do something with pork butt and Twix candy bars. We’ll get right on it and get you some ideas in a bit.” When the waiter leaves the chefs go to their laptops and find nude picture of Scarlett Johannsen and complain about the lighting in the Pterodactyl porn stating that the Werewolf gangbang was so much better.

Eventually after the waitstaff visits 10 times asking how things are going, the chefs respond with a few choice picks. The waiter runs out of the kitchen with three dishes to have the MAN decide what will be served. After a bit of deliberating he chooses the lasagna but wants the meat to be chicken instead of sausage and to use less ricotta. When the chefs hear this they go nuts, stating that he has no idea what the hell he is taking about. After the waiter runs back and forth many times and the chefs have made their own porn based on Godzilla Meets Rodan starring Scarlett Johansen, a compromise has been meet; turkey sausage, less ricotta, but more mozzarella. Everyone is happy and the chefs start cooking huge portions of lasagna.

The lasagna is on the plates, garnished with a portion of tomato and olive oil sauce with a bit of parsley, and sprig of mint, ready to be moved to the dining room when the waiter launches himself into the kitchen. “The proprietor heard that one of the customers loathes Italian cooking. Scarp that lasagna and get working on Polynesian dish without pineapple in it. For some reason he associates pineapple with Ford Rambler that crushed his toes in High School.” And the whole thing begins again.

The funny thing, there are times when I miss the insanity. The constant racing down the road at 200mph in the rain only to have to slam on the breaks attempting not to loose control, then I kick up the meds and feel much better. Excuse me I have to go start drooling on myself. Coming with me, Bobo?

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posted by Don Taylor @ 12:49 PM, ,

Guerilla Germ(an) Warfare

It all began on humid, barely tolerable hot day in August. No one knew at the time that such a vicious and unparallel conflict would begin. The Geneva Conventions had long restricted chemical and biological warfare, but these armies did not, or would not understand the words written down that day. They followed only the rules and laws from political bodies that they held upon high. The politics of survival at all cost. That day August 6, 2006, was the day when all hell broke loose and all rules of conduct in war evaporated in mucus filled tissue.

Since coming over in August I have been sick no less than 8 times. A few were just simple head congestion or my stomach dancing a polka when the rest of the body was doing a jig, but then three maybe four times the warriors in this battle prepared and started a major skirmish. Laying havoc upon the landscape that is me. The last battle has been raging on for about a week now.

It all started with various sniffles and a sore throat. Nothing that anyone of us has not persevered before, then on last Friday in became worse, the mounting forced decided to mount a full out attack upon my throat silencing me for days. I could not speak a word louder than a thought and if I did I sounded, as my brother put it, like a basket full of baby howler monkeys. I just want to know how he knows what a basket full of baby howler monkeys sound like. Perhaps he has a side business importing exotic animals for the private use of their audience that cannot be rebroadcast with out the express written consent of the NFL (National Fetishism League). The loudest thing that I have had to say was the clicky-clak of my keyboard. It’s annoying, but in my silence I have figure out why I have been getting as the Germans say krank.

I thought it was that I was around new people everyday, being exposed to whatever plague they might currently be ferrying in from Köln. New people everyday, no chance to prepare for the on coming battle, no chance to get the ramparts built. Made sense. Back in the US I went to work in the same office, worked with the same people, went back to my same apartment, exposing myself (on some occasion yes that way) to same set of germs. Easy to build an immunity without impunity that way. Here its guerilla germ warfare. Never the same thing. That is what I thought, and then lying in bad, drinking my green tea with honey, surrounded by silence the answer rang clearly in my head as my computer chimed with new email.

The reason I have been getting sick; David Hasselhoff is attempting to possess me. Please send me a monk, a rabbi and watch episodes of Baywatch in reverse to see if any answers can be found. Or maybe if I spread the disease…

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posted by Don Taylor @ 11:34 AM, ,

Does This Make Me Look Silly

Hey it’s been a while. How you’ve been? I see that the rash hasn’t cleared up. Actually, it’s beginning to resemble Vic Tayback. You should have that look at. Me? I feel like the right side of my body needs to be sanitized, refurbished and reinstalled. Other than that I think I should be wearing a big pretty Easter bonnet.

So much to talk about, but we have to make this brief the laundry is not going to do itself. You’ll probably read today, if it’s a slow news day in Iraq or if President Bush doesn’t replace Condoleezza Rice with his elementary school teacher, that the CEO of Deutsch Telekom, Germany’s Ma Bell, is stepping down today. And you guessed it, I’m taking over. That’s right, I’ve spent so much time calling them, visiting them face to face and just basically learning the intimate details of each of the personnel striving to get this damnable thing called the internet up and running, that when all systems were finally go those crazy Bavarians began to miss me and my eclectic American ways. The only solution that did not involve me completely losing my tact was to make me CEO. They tell me its more of a figurehead position where I wave a lot, smile here and there, and shrug my shoulders when the press ask me hard questions. I’ll take it, figure I can get a lot reading done and also they gave me this really nice sign with my name on it. It’s shiny.

You know what else is shiny? No not my nose, the makeup department won’t allow that -- the new place. Its spotless, clean and I rule it much like I will Deutsch Telekom. I have been devoting myself to reign as a benevolent monarch but be weary as I might lash out and have you quartered.

During my reign I have discovered three things: a newfound respect for my Mom and other mothers who gave up everything to maintain a home. There is only so many times you can dust the gewgaws you got in Tacoma before you want to smash them all to the ground and dance upon their bones in a jazzy two step. Its hard work, not physically but mentally. Its exhausting keeping your shit together, not allowing your family to come home to you wearing a penguin suit while masticating on the marrow of Doris, the perky next door Martha Stewart wannabe. Secondly, I can understand how Martha Stewart became a domineering control freak. When you stay at home all the time, especially after you have been someone who has been in a position of power, you need to control something. Anything. Anything but the monotony of the mundane, so you overcompensate and put a stranglehold on everything. I have not become that bad, I think, but I have noticed myself paying heed to things that I would never even cared about 6 months ago. Like, having the wrong knife for filet pork. “There is no fucking way I am using a Goddamn paring knife, would you ask Michelangelo to use a fucking shovel to sculpt with?”

Lastly people have asked me how the writing is coming along. I have some great ideas, some really funny dialogue, interesting characters and all in all a deep well of nothing. This last slice of life is the hardest to face. I have this fear of failure that I’ve been masking behind procrastinating for perfection. Saying I can’t start that, I have to do this and that and all other forms of bullshit to mask the dread of not being read. Everything needed to be perfect, but that is an escape that you can use forever since perfection is infinitely unobtainable. In the end I have to push forth and start something. I know that the housefrau gig is not all I want to do in life. I got this opportunity and I can’t fuck it up. I realize now I rather fail than wonder what if. So its time for me to stop watching German reruns of Alice and order up or shut up.

By the way since we’ve been talking I realize that your rash doesn’t so much resemble Vic Tayback as it does Gavin MacLeod. All aboard, it’s going to get bumpy.

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posted by Don Taylor @ 11:12 AM, ,

Yup. Next week I'll be back in full force. Stay tuned kids, I now have access to all my stuff and even less hold of my facilities. It could get interesting.

And to those that kept in touch last month, you will, on your death bed receive total enlightenment. Which is nice. Those that did not, and you know who you are, will be visited in your sleep tonight by twelve foot tall syphilitic monkeys who only want to use you as a suppository to cure their addiction to Taco Bell's Chalupas. Better get an extra, extra grande from Starbucks. That'll learn you.

posted by Don Taylor @ 10:30 AM, ,

posted by Don Taylor @ 10:05 AM, ,

A Few Parting Words

Here are two things to keep you all busy until I get back online. One will consume you and is a great time waster its called Funny Farm. The other is funny and thought provoking. Let me introduce Ze Frank.

Okay y'all, thats it for a while, hope to see my mailbox full of letters when I get back. That address for you conveience is dontaylor26@yahoo.com.

Good night and good luck.

posted by Don Taylor @ 9:57 AM, ,