You Know You Are A Contrary Introvert When . . .

Eggs, bacon, tea, and satire make you happy.

How do I know this?  Because my wife told me: “I was feeling grumpy, but then you fed me eggs and bacon, and I read Florence King.  I feel better now”.

Need I say more?


The Faygo Gang

A deceptive silence hangs heavy and oppressive in the air. Tick, tick – the day grows longer, yet the silence remains, stifling as ever. And then – a shriek of unfathomable pain pierces the stillness. Gumby has perished.

The womenfolk glance across the hall with a sober gaze beyond the propped door into the Den of Masculinity, the Cave, the Abyss, one eyebrow held aloft in mutual scoff. The gaze is shifted to each other. Heads shake in hopeless resignation. The Feast of Masculine Bonding has commenced.

The men innocently term it the “LAN party.” However, we, the Women of Commiseration, have gained the Wisdom to Know Better. Computers are networked in eager expeditiousness while we womenfolk shield ourselves behind a wall of mint mochas and online wedding dress searches. And then, the Faygo Moonmist begins to flow. To the men, Faygo is the glorious, caffeinated liquid divinity available at the dollar store at the bargain price of a dollar for three liters – “keeps the mouse finger sharp.” To the women, who know better, Faygo Moonmist is the nastier generic version of Mountain Dew of dubious origins that alters the chemical makeup of our men’s bloodstream and liquefies their once-brilliant minds. An average of 1.5 to 2 liters is consumed per male in any given eight-hour period, and bodily necessity constitutes the only reason for which the male bonding rituals are temporarily halted. Female heads shake in incredulity as one arises from his gaming glory to answer the call of nature, only to forfeit hand-washed hygiene in lieu of acquiring another nuclear missile.

“Male-bonding,” per se, as we the women have discerned, consists of sporting bulky headphones to prevent the threat of communication between the respective parties so that they can more efficiently fling grenades, missiles, and other assorted weaponry at each other. Yet, we must not be so brash as to deny that they do not possess any capacity for socialization. Yes, there is that random phrase that escapes the lips of the Silent Ones. We might not term it necessarily witty or coherent, but it is dialogue nonetheless. They are primarily periodic and imperative sentences no more than four or five syllables in length. Often, they are rhetorical. “Pass the Faygo.” Then, at a time of unprecedented outreach to one another in mutual camaraderie, we hear, “Have you ever re-spawned yourself in the freezer?” A masculine bond has been forged. Tears well up in the feminine eyes. The Age of Mutual Exchange has come. A new day dawns.

Books for Children of the Introverted Misanthrope

As the offspring of today’s introverted misanthropes are carefully crafted into the cynics of tomorrow, especial attention must be paid to the manner of their molding.  As the marginalized youth of a marginalized minority, they face the great burden of bearing the searing torch of satire, wit, and realism into a world blinded by optimism and madness – but I repeat myself.  For this reason, for the despairing youth who are our future – assuming there is one to be had – we have lovingly crafted a series of classic, misanthropic children’s literature – guaranteed to inspire despair in countless generations of those generated.

Sometimes I Wish You Would Just Shut Up

Teaches children priceless etiquette lessons.  An excerpt: “When Mommy is in the kitchen chugging boxed wine from the spigot, that’s her little way of saying, ‘Sometimes I wish you would just shut up.’”

Stars Are Just Dying Balls of Burning Gas

Instills children with an invaluable sense of realism.  An excerpt: “That shiny, golden certificate covered in pink stars and smiley faces Teacher gave you for perfect attendance is the biggest prize you’ll ever win.  When you grow big and strong and show up to work every day, your prize will be getting to come back to work every agonizing…soul crushing…day…after day…after day…and not living in a soggy box under the highway overpass.  So whenever Teacher exclaims, ‘You’re a shining star!’ – remember this: Stars are just big, hot balls of gas burning themselves to death in the dark, cold loneliness of outer space.”

Kitty and the Conman

Helps children to develop a healthy sense of accountability.  An excerpt: “Susie made her bed every morning, ate all of her vegetables, picked up her toys, and shared with other children on the playground.  One day as she was on her way outside to play, Mother called after her, ‘Have you fed Mr. Boots?’  Mr. Boots was a kind, old cat who enjoyed sunning himself in the window and swatting at bits of yarn Susie dangled in front of his nose.  She had forgotten about Mr. Boots and his afternoon snack.  Yet the sun and her little friends called out to Susie, and so she called back to Mother, ‘Oh, yes.  He gobbled it all up.’  And off she darted to play.  Returning a while later for supper, Susie came upon Mother in the kitchen.  ‘You lied, Susie,’ she said flatly.  ‘What’s that, Mother?’ Susie started.  ‘You did not feed Mr. Boots,’ Mother replied, ‘and now he is dead.  Your lies killed Mr. Boots.’  Susie sobbed, but all the tears in the world could not bring back poor Mr. Boots.”

Flowers Die, Too

A timeless classic that teaches children that even beauty and innocence cannot save them from the inevitability of death.  An excerpt: “Daisy was the loveliest, purest flower in the land.  The snowy whiteness of her petals surrounded her buttery yellow face like an angel’s halo, and all of the townsfolk would pause during their strolls to admire her beauty.  Even her neighbors, Rose and Violet, envied her radiant blooms.  Yet all of her charms could not save her from the hands of Fate.  Neighbor Joe one day was walking his new, fuzzy puppy as he stopped to admire Daisy’s pretty petals.  The fuzzy puppy paused, sniffed at Daisy’s blooms, and took a dump on her head.  Shamed and stinking, Daisy’s only salvation arrived shortly after when Little Bobby came along and mowed off her head.”

Rodney Rabbit Learns About Farming

Teaches children to dream small so as not to be disappointed when their college degree earns them assistant manager with a side of fries.  An excerpt: “Rodney Rabbit had dreamed since he was but a wee bunny of being just like Farmer John and growing tall stalks of corn, brilliant orange carrots, and creeping vines of peas.  But alas, Farmer John had a craving for stew.”

There’s an Aardvark in My Anus

A child’s first book of biology and the alphabet.  An excerpt:  “There’s an aardvark in my anus.  There’s a bear in my bowels.  There’s a cat in my colon.  There’s a dog in my duodenum.”  And there, my friends, is a guaranteed Caldecott winner.