Birthday weeks are self indulgent and insane

your birthday week is insane

As we’ve gotten older, birthday celebrations have obviously changed from Mom packing classroom snacks to getting waaay too drunk with people you don’t hate. No longer do we gift cups of dirt to our classmates (extra gummy worms for your BFF and the boy who chased you at recess DUH). Instead, we go out to dinner, throw crazy house parties, or go bar hopping. (fuck party buses. gross.)

With the help of Facebook and its inherent self indulgent methods of updating your cousins, aunts, and old math class partners about your mixed feelings regarding the latest Toyota commercial, I have noticed a disturbing trend related to birthdays:

YOU GUYS IT’S MY BIRTHDAY WEEK!!!!

What. The. Fuck. NO.

I’ve even seen ” IT’S MY BIRTHDAY MONTH” posts. Not joking. So terrifying. Like sleepy children in nightgowns walking the streets from Hocus Pocus level of terrifying.

*Cue Twilight Zone music*

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY MONTH PRESENT TO ME”

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*SCREAMS*

Maybe it’s just a symptom of the new-ish social media age. By now in 2013, everyone is so used to incessantly updating their followers about their day-to-day lives that perhaps it’s par for the course to think everyone would ALSO enjoy spending an entire week celebrating their hideous glorious birth. But really, it’s just self indulgent as fuck and everybody knows it–except for the Birthday Unstable.

Here are some people who are annoyed about the emergence of the Birthday Week celebration:

“Oh my god, no one likes birthday weeks except for the birthday person. Personally, I find them extremely annoying. I wouldn’t even want to celebrate my own birthday for a solid week — WAY too self-indulgent. Makes me uncomfortable.” -Anonymous IRL friend

“You get one day.” -Both of my roommates

“I’d like to celebrate birthday hour, or birthday minute.” -My friend who fucking hates birthdays

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And here are some tweets from the type of people who support celebrating birthday weeks:

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Don’t get me wrong–it is absolutely wonderful to celebrate the birthdays of friends and family. These are the people who fill our lives with joy and love, who make us laugh when we’re depressed and who buy us candy bars on the fly just cuz. It’s a good thing to celebrate a birthday, because it gives us the opportunity to show our friends and fam just how meaningful and important they are in our lives. It’s one designated day of the year, that everyone gets equally and allows us all time to express a little “Hey, you rock so fucking hard. I love you. Please accept this baby kitty collage as a token of my love and appreciation.”

But that’s gotta be it, man. One day. A Birth Day. Not a week. Jesus doesn’t even get a week and he like, invented unicorns or something. And holy shit, absolutely NOT an entire birthday month. 

I’ve devised this helpful chart to guide us and the Birthday Unstable through the accepted durational options of celebrating a birthday:

NORMAL ZONE

Birthday Celebration = Happy Birthday Lovely Human Who Understands Time and Society, Who Respects Others

Birthday Weekend Celebrations = Happy Birthday Person Who Hopefully Only Expects Me To Attend One Event

BIRTHDAY UNSTABLE ZONE

Birthday Week Celebrations = Happy Birthday But This Is Not Cute At All, Not One Bit

Birthday Month Celebrations = Bitch R U INSANE

Birthday Year Celebrations = *guttural sounds due to crippling shock and a swallowed tongue from debilitating rage*

Thankfully, none of my close friends are socially diagnosed as Birthday Unstable. Maybe together, us sane human beings with a grasp on functioning society and who interact with those suffering from Unstable Birthday Syndrome, can band together and encourage just one special day of birth celebration–for everyone.

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Your holiday guide to meeting the family and not being an idiot

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Tis the season to be jolly az fuck, homies.

It’s also the season for traveling with your new boyfriend/girlfriend/best friend to their hometown for the holidays. It’s stressful meeting other people’s parents and family because all families are pretty weird and have their own fucked up origin stories. It’s like stepping into a new little country where you have to learn the rules quick and not piss off the dictator–or else you’re eating at the kids table with little Damien who pees on shoes and cuts hair when you’re not looking. Here are some tips to avoid being peed on completely ostracized that will hopefully ease your holiday travel nerves.

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1. Take a gift. It is always good manners to present your host, especially around the holidays, with a small gift. Wine is a really safe and classy bet because what kind of total grinch doesn’t love wine? (Alcoholics, that’s who. Find out if the family drinks, and if they don’t, a nice apple cider is perfect.) This Chilean wine from Concha y Toro called Casillero del Diablo is relatively inexpensive for how good it is. I believe it is around 8-10 dollars a bottle. If you have even less money to spend, baking brownies or cookies is a really great, super cheap and very sweet alternative.

casillero-del-diablo

2. STAY OFF YOUR PHONE. There is absolutely no excuse for being a rude piece of shit and sitting on  your phone during a holiday trip, ESPECIALLY if you are meeting your friend’s or new lover’s parents and family for the first time. Nothing says “you’re boring and I think you suck” more than a set of eyes glued to a smartphone screen during any kind of party, dinner or hang out. There’s no way around it. Rude. As. Hell. In the eternal words of Uncle Joey, “Cut. It. Out.”

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3. Keep the conversation light. Unless your gf/bf/bff’s parents are Serious Intellectuals who openly welcome thoughtful debate on controversial topics, keep your opinions about abortion and gun control to your Twitter feed. Nothing sours a first impression quite like a heated political debate, amirite? To detract from a conversation in dangerous territories, say a series of vague statements like “Life is so complex! Can you pass me the rolls? I LOVE your shirt!”

Don't be this awkward. Image via the age.com.au
This is what you look like during awkward conversations and probably also during sex. Image via the age.com.au

4. Don’t shy away from conversation. I am extremely social and conversational so I have no idea what it’s like to be “awkward” or “shy”. But I do know this: most people really don’t care if you’re shy or a little strange as long as you’re also nice/not a huge asshole. You can ask people questions about themselves. You can tell people things about yourself, even if you think it’s sorta weird. Just don’t casually bring up how you like to eat paper or the fact that you save your toenails cuz that shit is definitely weird as fuck.

5. Offer to help with anything. Normally there are too many cooks in the kitchen, but offer to help chop, set the table or pour the drinks anyways because it shows that you’re not a completely useless human guest. If you don’t help in the preparation or setup of dinner, the least you can do is offer to help clean up afterwards. Large holiday dinners are stressful to prepare, and the last thing your gf/bf/bff’s family probably want is to clean up after your freeloading meal. In other words, get a job, hippie!

This is a rendering of what René Magritte's childhood hand turkey might have looked like. Image via blouinartonfi.com
René Magritte’s imagined childhood hand turkey. Image via blouinartonfi.com

6. Err on the side of being really gracious. It is better to come off as overly enthusiastic about the generosity bestowed upon you by your bf/gf/bff’s family than to come off as ungrateful. Really. At least they’ll be left with a positive impression of you rather than “that guy sucks.” Don’t be that guy, man. You’re better than that. So even if it sucked, be gracious, be kind and you’ll be fine.

7. Don’t get too drunk. Don’t be an idiot.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM 20POORANDFABULOUS

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7 Questions in Heaven with Phillip Morris

In heaven, there is Phillip Morris times 5. You better behave.
In heaven, there is Phillip Morris times 5. You better behave.

I met Phillip Morris at a sick ass Halloween party in Northeast a couple weeks ago. He was in charge of the cups, very polite and dressed as Dartanian from the 3 Musketeers. I was a little bummed because I thought his gigantic wig was his real hair (hey, it was a great look). Later in the evening, we were sitting by the fire and started talking about music and shit. I had recognized his name from my friend in Seyah and their CD release show a year and a half ago at the Entry (local famous musico babez Lizzo and Sophia Eris performed at that show well). However, I don’t think I got to see Phillip Morris that night because he was on his way back from Chicago and got to the show extra late, or I was being a total bum and had to be in bed by midnight. WHATEVER OK.

Anyways, the night partied on beautifully, twitter handles were exchanged, and the rest my good internet pals is this: Phillip Morris and Wide Eyes (which consists of Minneapolis artists/producers Sean Anonymous, Tony Phantom, DJ NAME and Dimitry Killstorm) have banded together to collaborate on an album released last week titled “The Sick and the Dead“. It is awesome and really cool. Download it below, throw these talents a few bones, and settle in all cozy-like with an awesome interview below from your new favorite rapper, Mr. Phillip Morris.

1) How long have you been making music? Why did you start making music?

I originally started writing short stories in 4th or 5th grade, as my defense mechanism. I was getting picked on and bullied pretty frequently since i was really short and uber nerdy. That ended up resulting in me starting to make music approximately 15 years ago. After I ate LSD for the first time, i decided that I wanted to seriously make music for a living. I was NOT a good rapper then, but that was the turning point where i decided to take it much more seriously and start practicing a lot more. It took me about 6 more years to finally get to a point where I was comfortable performing in front of Chicago crowds.
Phillip Morris. Foto de Facebook
Phillip Morris. Foto de Facebook

2) You just released an album with Wide Eyes called “The Sick and the Dead“. What inspired this album?

First of all I have a lot of love and respect for Wide Eyes. Not only are they some stand up dudes, but they are definitely responsible for me becoming popular in Minneapolis. I was living in Chicago when i met them, the first big Mpls show I did was at their video release party for Borrowed Time, and after that show the momentum just kept going. So yeah, one day my younger whiter twin brother by the name of Sean Anonymous approached me with the idea of doing a collaborative project together and I was like YUP YUP HOME SKILLET THAT’S A STELLAR IDEA and then we began working on it. The official release party is 11/15 at Triple Rock (West Bank in Minneapolis).
Sean Anonymous and Phillip Morris lookin' all rad as hell and shit.
Sean Anonymous and Phillip Morris lookin’ all rad as hell and shit.

3) Lady Gaga is going to be the first artist to perform a song in space in 2015. Which planet would you most like to perform on, and why?

I would most like to perform on Uranus because then when girls would ask me when’s my next show I could be like “Hey there girl…thanks for asking! I’m currently touring across Uranus.” and they might just mistakenly think i was talking about touring their bootyhole. (Okay that was a bit juvenile, but it made me giggle) Yup. Uranus all day. But okay, the real reeeeal reason is that it’s the only planet named after a Greek God (as the rest are named after Roman gods) and I am a huge mythology buff but i prefer Greek over Roman. (Sidenote: I have won 1st place in 3 separate citywide mythology competitions in Chicago. Mythology nerd. Yup. Okay, I’m done)
Look! It's Phillip Morris touring Uranus.
Phillip Morris touring Uranus, 2017.

4) Describe your new album in 3 words.

Fastidious Metaphor Jamboree?

5) If you were taking your soulmate on a date to a live show, which Minneapolis artist would you see perform and why?

Hmmmmmm, that’s a really hard question. So much talent in this city. I’d have to say though, out of all the live shows I’ve seen from Minneapolis the one that might have blown my mind the most was Carnage The Executioner when he headlined the Rogue Citizen Art Opening back in October. It might have honestly been one of the best live shows I’ve ever seen in my life. The energy was phenomenal. So yeah, I’d have to say him (but I’d ask him in advance if he was willing to give my soulmate a shoutout in beatbox format, so that’d make me look a little cooler)
Carnage the Executioner's City Pages cover.
Carnage the Executioner’s City Pages cover.

6) What’s your favorite line from your new album?

“I know that there’s no containing the craziness baby, maybe it’s the shiniest of thoughts on the stormiest days…maybe it’s heinously redundant explaining the story…maybe it’s a Delorean painted a glorious shade of Dorian Gray”

7) Who is your dream collaboration, dead or alive?

I’d have to say…I’d either like to collaborate with Saul Williams or Corey Feldman, but I have a very difficult time deciding which one. Can I pick both? On the same track? Please? 😉
Your wish is my free online photo editor's command.
Your wish is my free online photo editor’s command.

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