It was a warm and relaxing Friday evening when, ice cream cone in hand, I left the safety of my favorite local ice cream shop, and glanced upon the display window of the adjacent delicatessen:
|My Favorite Pastime||John Denver’s Favorite Pastime|
|1. Easy to start.||1. Requires extensive training.|
|2. Each coin has been on a unique journey through time.||2. Even with extensive training, some accidents are unavoidable.|
|3. Collecting old coins is a unique way to learn history.||3. If the engine stops you crash and die.|
|4. You can often find interesting coins in general circulation. It’s as easy as looking through your pocket change.||4. The plane is traveling so fast that when you crash your body will fragment into multiple pieces.|
|5. Proof sets and commemorative coins make for great gifts for many occasions.||5. Even if you survive the crash, you will wish you hadn’t. Your crippled and broken body will be bedridden and you will eventually die anyway.|
|6. Coins come in all shapes and sizes. Some even have holes in the center!||6. Has been associated with decapitation.|
|7. Almost never associated with decapitation.||7. If your head is removed, it may not be found.|
|8. Coins made of rare metals often increase in value over time.||8. His head! They couldn’t find his fucking head!!|
Recently, while visiting Hersheypark, this happened:
At first I was quite taken aback by this conflicting message. But after reviewing my photos from earlier in the day, it became clear to me that I had missed some obvious warning signs:
This M&M vending machine was located outside the exit door of a local car wash on Long Island, on a hot summer’s day. Personally, I found the disclaimer at the top of the 25 cents sticker to be less than reassuring. If you are ever at this car wash and find yourself in the position to purchase these M&Ms, I recommend following the flow chart below to assist in the decision-making process:
1) As expected, I’m the talk of the town in Alaska and the Russian Federation:
2) Clicking on #owlsculpture on Instagram opens up a portal to an abjectly horrifying universe:
3) Having a twitter account with no followers is akin to when I was seven years old and hosted a one-man talent show in a room full of my stuffed animals.
4) Searching for ‘Google Analytics’ by the first four syllables reveals a wonderful array of meaningful life suggestions.
5) In retrospect, pre-ordering and hand-signing one-thousand 8 x 10 inch glossy head-shots of myself was ill-conceived.
Fortuitously, most of these events line up perfectly with my life bucket-list:
One my family members is in grade school. Last week her art teacher hosted scultpure day and the winning student, picked by the school administrators, got to submit their sculpture to a local arts fair. Her sculpture of an owl took first place:
As you can see, she’s got quite an eye for sculpture. Note how the warm color palate of the head contrasts with the more earthy forest green hue of the body. The arms and ears provide a playfully unbalanced symmetry while the torso takes on the exotic symbolism of a pineapple. She carved the feathermark pattern all by herself, by the way.
Oh, I almost forgot - the face looks like two testicles and a penis. Here it is from the side:
And here it is enhanced for dramatic effect:
The viewer will appreciate the shadowed edge, so as to draw one’s eyes to the center of the subject. Look deep enough into its jaundiced eye-‘balls’ and you’ll unlock the mysteries of the cosmos. Joking aside, I’m very proud of this particular member of my family. Wiener-faced sculpture not withstanding, she really does have an artistic eye, and by no means did she actually intend to sculpt male genitalia into the head of an owl. But it does strike me as odd how, not one single adult at her school, at any step in its genesis, tried to halt, or even slightly modify, the penis-and-testicles owl. They let her mold it, dry it, bake it in the kiln, glaze and cure it, then win the contest, without any revisions.
How could this be? My first thought was that the competition was slim, but further investigation revealed this not to be the case. Perhaps the white and tan clay was packaged in such a way that it could only be applied as spheres or sausages. But that seemed unlikely. This brought me to the only logical conclusion; they never saw a man’s genitalia at all – instead they saw Beeker from the Muppets with a noseful of coke, which, as everyone knows, is a guaranteed shoe-in at art competitions. Coke-nosed Beeker, junk-faced owl, whatever, the bottom line is she won and that’s all that matters in the end.