Category Archives: Wisconsin

Aimless Driving In Wisconsin

One of my most tried and true stress-relievers is to charge up my iPod, gas up my car, buy a fresh pack of cigarettes, pick a direction, and drive. No particular destination, just away. It’s insanely expensive, it runs the car even more into the ground than my daily driving does, and the chain smoking probably isn’t the best for my health, but hey, it’s the best way for me to learn every Rihanna song in my library word for word. That, and it gives you time to think. Time to think about anything and everything. Sports. Jobs. What cutesy thing you should text next to the girl you’re into. Family. Friends. What the best way is to forget that girl. The course of your life. The mistakes you’ve made. How great you’re life could have been if you hadn’t been a dumbass and instead of listening to what your friends and family told you was your best option, you just did what the fuck you wanted to do and felt like was the right choice. And lest we not forget the immemorially bittersweet and hauntingly sublime task of remembering the girl because hey, sometimes you’ll meet people in your life that make you realize that Snoop Dogg was wrong, and that bitches ARE shit. Oh, and, of course, my new favorite hobby of trying to figure out the best and most creative Saw like way of killing Gotye, like he would have to delete his ex off of his Facebook friend list in order to live or something like that, or forcing him to put some fucking clothes on because he is NOT good looking enough to be naked in a music video. But I digress.

Set Blasters to “Kill That Whiny Bitch”

 

The best time to drive-think, I’ve found, is the middle of the night. Unless you’re on a major Interstate, you’ll see maybe four other cars every hour, the stoplights switch to flashing yellow, and you finally get a chance to start living in a Thompsonian manner and drive as fast as you damn well please down the empty streets because the cops that are out give less than one full fuck about you. It’s the emptiness of the road, I think, that really gives you the ability to completely tune out what’s happening around you and just dive into the previously unexplored depths of your head. It allows you to get away from the mindlessness of shitty TV and Internet memes. It allows you to sit there and slow down and actually try to figure out this miraculous little game of “Let’s See How Little We Can Fuck This Up” that we colloquially refer to as life. It allows you to light your fifth cigarette in forty-five minutes, driving at sixty miles-an-hour, weaving in and out of your lane and only be phased by the fact that your voice is almost as gravely as the shoulder that you’re barely holding onto.

But recently I feel I’ve reached a new horizon. I’ve turned down a different road. A road that’s not so easily navigated. Or at the very least the road is transforming into something horribly regrettable. The timers of the stoplights don’t work, so instead of flashing yellows I get solid reds at every intersection. Six beady little LED pieces of shit telling me I can’t keep going, that I need to stop, regardless of the fact that there isn’t another conscious human being within 5 miles of my position. The city has stopped picking up the road-kill, so when you drive over the same road every day for a week, you get to see the stages of decay, from the fresh carcass still intact, legs of the deer still looking as if they’re galloping, to the bloating fly-infested cesspool that forms as the legs straighten out under the influence of rigamortis, and finally ending in the depressing pile of hair, leather, and venison jerky with a center of black and goopy organ nougat.

Even the car itself has started to haunt me. This was the car I learned to drive in. This was the car that’s seen thousands of cigarettes, hundreds of spliffs, a half-dozen blunts and a Crave Case or two. This was the car that saw everything from first dates and kisses to last dates and breakups. This was the car that has the unfortunate experience of seeing me get my first handjob. Hell, with the amount of manual stimulation and fellatio that has gone down (haha, get it?) in that car, I think it’s probably best that we do part ways (I know it’s not romantic, but we were all in high school at one point. As for all that stuff that’s happened after I graduated high school, I really have no excuse). Not even the coolest and most compatible of women have ever stayed with me this long after seeing my penis.

But I know it’s not the car. It’s not the road. It’s not those bastard stoplights. It’s me. It’s my life and my choices and my situation that are getting all fucked up. It’s at the point that I can’t even bring myself to lie about it and tell everybody the same old throw-away, pre-packaged lines that I dole out whenever I don’t want to put the weight of my problems on other people. I can’t even muster up the breath to say, “I’m fine,” or, “Everybody has shit in their lives,” if it’s someone I can’t bring myself to lie to. Now when I drive, it’s like there’s this overload of stuff to think about. It’s too much to be able to sort out and think about in my head as the car ticks over 170,000 miles. How am I supposed to pay 25 grand in student loans making $9.25 and hour? How can I ever make it in the world as some type of writer if I let the shit in my life debilitate me to the point that this is the first thing I’ve written for my pathetic fucking blog in four months? How am I supposed to tell the girl that’s currently fucking me that I really don’t want anything remotely serious to develop out of this? And then the realization that, due to work and sleep and booze and drugs, I haven’t actually seen or talked to that girl in like, two weeks, so I guess she knows I’m not looking for anything and now I’m back to just masturbating. Then there’s the fact that I’ve finally come to the conclusion that moving back home after graduation was the worst possible decision that I could have ever made in my life, as it has pretty much destroyed any chance of a positive relationship between me and my family. And on top of that, slowly my friends have started to move away or get real jobs and have their own lives and issues that they need to deal with, not to mention that I’ve got to deal with being cut out of people’s lives that I actually, genuinely gave a shit about. And then there’s the fact that I kind of want to start going back to my therapist to try and figure out what the fuck is wrong with me and why I constantly feel this more or less even, steady, slow-burn depression and relatively large anxiety issues, but I can’t bring myself to do it because of the resentment that I feel toward him ever since he called this whole shitty downward spiral fall that I’m in the midst of, all the way down to what set it off in the first place. Then there’s the question of whether or not I’m going to get around to the whole quitting smoking thing, and then there’s wondering exactly how far back I’m going to continue to push the line that separates the drugs that I’ve done from those that I’m not comfortable with taking yet. And then there’s the fact that for whatever reason, I’ve got this habit of being really shitty at letting things go, and I have a tendency to, even years later, rip previously healed wounds back open just for shits and giggles to try and remember why it hurt so much, just to find out that if you do such things, all those horrible events in your past, all your wrong choices and bad decisions and unfortunate circumstances and years of being treated seemingly unfairly still fucking hurts, so that when you start to think about life too much, it starts to become overwhelming, and you end up doing more harm than good for yourself. And on top of all of that, I start to wonder why the fuck I know every single word to “Call Me Maybe” and actually got legitimately mad at work the other day when my coworker changed the radio station as soon as it came on.

A couple of weeks ago, one of the blogs that I follow, AdamsDaugther came back from a bit of a hiatus (I don’t care that your blog is kind of girly at times, I like girly stuff. Like Gilmore Girls, Andre champagne, your blog, and Nutz Over Chocolate Luna Bars). She had a post about how she was coming off of a rough patch in her life and decided to rededicate herself to blogging (and cooking). And, with the exception of her using The Notebook as the source of her revelation (Sorry, I like girly stuff, but I made a promise to myself long, long ago that the only time I would ever watch The Notebook would be if I found myself in the position that watching it would help me get laid), I realized I needed to do something, too. I need to get back to doing what I love, to what I want to do with my life. I need to get back to writing and making these amazing connections between seemingly unrelated aspects of life. I need to get back to bringing everyone a little bit of Panda insight. I need to get back to reveling in the awesome things that happen to me, and publicly crucifying those who wrong me. There have been too many boozed out shenanigans and too much regrettable sex in strange places and too many drugged up adventures that have taught me too many little-known rules of life to just keep them to myself. I haven’t spent all my money on bad decisions to just remember them. I need to tell them.

These are fucking delicious.

And it makes complete sense for me to do so. Even though I maintain that, in some ways, I needed a break from reality to post up inside my head, it’s time to get back to being me. Even though this road has been littered with those now-dried up and blowing in the breeze deer carcasses, they’ll eventually be gone. They’ll fix that fucking stoplight on 124th and Capitol to actually match up with the green lights on the road so you can drive from Peawaukee to downtown Milwaukee without stopping once. The rest-stop outside of Johnson Creek won’t have a car just creepily chilling in the parking lot with nobody in it. I’ll drive around Wisconsin at four in the morning and not have to wonder about whether the car coming toward me is a drunk driver or just another fuck-up like me, driving aimlessly to try and drive all the shit and demons from their head. There will be a time that I’ll stay out until five in the morning and drive home as the sun rises into the lavender-indigo sky as I speed past the unfortunate lot of my service industry brethren who are chosen to open the places of employ head off to work propped up by no less than 500 mg of caffeine, and the phosphene-like death throes of the LSD I took earlier that night streak across my perception as the drugs slowly meet their demise in my well-overworked liver, and I’ll realize that, no matter how badly I manage to fuck it up, no matter how much bullshit I’ll have to deal with on account of others, no matter how many people or stoplights continually tell me what I can’t fucking do, and no matter how many times I willingly let people hurt me with the vein hope that they’ll truly realize what they’re doing to me and my psyche and change their mind, maybe my life is way too damn interesting and beautiful to not write about.

Take it easy,

-Panda

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It’s Snowing in Wisconsin?

Yes, it is.

That’s right folks. For those of you who don’t live in Wisconsin, this past Wednesday marked the first snowfall for most of the state. This, of course, was met by hundreds of thousands of Facebook status updates about how much people hate snow or Wisconsin weather (How dare this place that is famous for cold winters actually get cold in November). But I’ve got a problem with this. You see, people want to sit around and bitch about how much they hate the weather here, but, in reality, Wisconsin actually has probably some of the best weather patterns that you could ask for.

Let’s start off with spring. Spring in Wisconsin is very calm. We get rain just like springtime in any place in the entire world. But when it isn’t raining, it’s gorgeous. There isn’t a cloud in the sky, the weather is mild, and the girls are in cute little sundresses. Everyone is getting antsy because school is about to let out of a few months. The weather is finally allowing you to walk greater distances in order to go to better bars. Sure, every couple of years we get that major 8”-12” snowfall in the middle of April, but immediately afterwards whoever the hell makes the weather is like, “my bad, bro,” and warms up the entire state and melts that shit within a week.

Next, we look at summer. We have a summer that really only lasts from midway through June to the end of August. And on top of that, there are only really two weeks, usually in August, when it gets humid that summer actually sucks. That’s only two weeks of sweaty crotches. Imagine if you lived in Miami and had to deal with that all year round.

Thirdly, we take a peek at our fall. Yeah, it gets pretty cold. When it rains, it is usually when it’s about 40 degrees out with a twenty mile-per-hour wind, so that sucks. I still remember most of the times that I went trick-or-treating I had to take into account, when making or buying my costume, how much space would be taken up by my winter coat.

Finally, we come to winter, the worst part of Wisconsin weather. It usually lasts like five months or so, from November through the end of March. That’s five months. Five months of thirties or lower. Five months of seeing nothing but gray skies. Five months of having jeans with crusty heels because of all the salt. Five months where you don’t really do anything other than become paler.  Five months of listening to a bunch of FIBs bitch about how cold it is because their parents don’t have the time to shuttle them to and from school in their Lexus.  But really, is winter that bad? I mean, it gives us an excuse to drink more. It gives us excuses to start bonfires. And I don’t know about you, but there is nothing in this world that makes me appreciate the natural beauty of a woman than five months of having all of their fun body parts covered in 4-6 layers of cotton-poly blend.

On top of all of that, take a look at the severe weather/natural disasters that hits our state. Tornadoes? Yeah, there are a few, but mostly in the middle of the state where there are nothing but farms, and they’re never that bad. Earthquakes? Apparently. I’ve never felt one here before, but they tell us that they happen. There were even reports of a vase falling off of a shelf somewhere in the suburbs. Tsunamis? No, but we’d be fine with this if we could intentionally sink the entire state of Michigan. No hurricanes, no volcanoes, no sand storms.

But we do have blizzards. For those of you who have never been in a blizzard, it’s when the sky drops anywhere from two to four feet of snow in a few hours, and then blows in all around with 50-MPH winds. You can’t really see anything but white. If you’re lucky, you can see the headlights of the plows before they run you over. Sounds bad, but it really isn’t. You see, we in Wisconsin view having a blizzard as an excuse to drink even more heavily than we usually do. Before the last blizzard we had, I went to the liquor store with some of my friends at around 4PM. The line to check out literally started at the door. And you didn’t go and grab your alcohol and then get in line. The line went up and down every single aisle, so you just grabbed a basket and whenever you passed what you wanted, you grabbed twice as much (When it comes to blizzards, you don’t know how long you’ll be snowed in). And you don’t just get drunk. You get literally annihilated. You get drunk enough to think that walking to the bar is a good idea (the four-and-a-half block walk took twenty minutes). And on top of that, your boss will give you a call the night before and say, “Hey, you should probably just take the day off tomorrow. No need to risk the commute.” And on top of that, you have a shit ton of snow now. It gives you all the resources you need for drunken snowball fights, igloo building, 15-foot-tall snow penis erecting, etc.  And remember, this is what we consider our “worst” weather.

So, as you can see, Wisconsin weather isn’t all that bad. In fact, I would venture as far as to say that we have perhaps the best weather in the entire country.

Take it easy,

-Panda


Onesies Rule

Let me start off by telling you about my bedroom.  It is small, filled with shit, uncomfortable, and it doesn’t deal with temperature changes well.  And what I mean by the temperature thing is that when it gets hot and humid outside, my room is the hottest and most humid in the entire house.  Consequently, when the weather outside gets really cold, my bedroom also happens to get really, really cold. I used to just think that it was because my room was the furthest spot in the house from both the furnace and the air conditioner, but I actually found out a few years ago that it was because my parents would always turn off/down the heat/AC when they went to bed in order to save money (Sure, it makes sense, and I’m sure that they’ve saved a decent amount of money, but a dick move nonetheless.  Not everyone goes to bed at 8 PM, Mom (And where the hell are all of those savings now?  I’ve got student loans to pay off, do you really think I’m responsible enough to actually save my money?  No.  Whiskey and cigarettes aren’t free)).

So what I end up doing on most nights when it gets really cold is sleep pretty much fully clothed.  Yeah, I’ll get blankets, too, but if you put too many blankets on they don’t stay tucked in as well at the foot of the bed, and then once one comes untucked it starts to untuck the others until even the top sheet comes untucked and then they don’t stay in order and you try your hardest to straighten everything out with your feet but it never works and  so then you have to get OUT of your bed and take every blanket off one by one and reapply them onto the bed that’s getting colder and colder every second that you’re out of it and when you finally get back in you have to slowly lower your body onto it to warm it up inch by inch because if you were to just jump in to a completely cold bed your body may very well go into shock (I’m assuming a cold bed is like a river high in the mountains.  If so, then thank you Bear Grylls helping me survive everyday).  But I’ll wear everything.  I’ll keep my undershirt that I wore that day on, as well as my socks, but I always change my pants.  You see, I’ve got these pajama pants that I’ve had for years, and I never really wore them until this past year.  These things are comfy, plaid, and, let’s face it, they’re much more classy than sweatpants.

But there is one problem with them: they ride up on my leg.  It’s a problem we’ve all probably dealt with.  You get into bed with pants on, and when you extend your legs to the foot of the bed, the pants stay where they are.  It’s obnoxious.  And like the blanket situation described above, you are stuck using your feet to try and correct the issue.  However, to me, there seems to be a much simpler solution.

One thing that has always irked me is how much childish things are looked down upon by the adult population of the human society.  For instance, trick-or-treating is meant to be only for kids, apparently.   Anytime an adult goes out and does it, the other adults that see them act insulted by it.  But why?  It is the only night that you are allowed to go up to people you don’t know and ask them for free shit, and they will give it to you without any second thought.  It would fiscally irresponsible to not do such a thing.  Or look at something like crazy straws.  You cannot tell me that those would not be really fun after about 8 Long Islands.  Or, as my friend Jay once put it, it would be a really cool way to do cocaine.

And thus, that brings me to the solution to my original problem:  Onesies.  I know, I know, they look absolutely absurd.  I would never be caught dead in public or in front of a woman I want to sleep with with one of those on.  But if it’s a matter of being warm for a night, I can’t think of a better article of clothing.  Now, you don’t need socks when you go to bed, because you’ve got a onesie.  Now, you don’t need to wear an undershirt, because you’ve got a onesie.  Now, you don’t need pajama pants or sweat pants or even underwear, because you’ve got a onesie.  Need to take a shit?  No problem, because onesie’s have cleaverly engineered butt-flaps.  Undo two buttons and you are all good to go.  House on fire?  No problem, you can still run outside and be completely covered (just make sure to properly close and secure the butt flap). Anyway that you look at it, onesies simply have all the answers. Not even the Snuggie can come close to providing all that you could ever want out of nightwear.  Or can it?

Take it easy,

-Panda


Solidarity in Wisconsin

As some of you may have heard, Wisconsin and it’s citizens are under attack.  A nonprofit vegan’s group has decided to put a billboard up right outside of Green Bay defaming cheese by telling us that it is extremely unhealthy for us.  Go ahead, read that and tell me that you are not disgusted.

As a lifelong Wisconsinite, I cannot tell you how offended I am at this.  Cheese is a way of life for us in this state, as it damn well should be.  The issue that I have with this billboard is two-fold.  First, we need to look at the economy of this billboard’s message and Wisconsin in general.  We all know that we are currently in a recession (or recession-like time period, for you uber-liberals), and that unemployment levels are rising.  Globalization is taking more and more jobs overseas.  Since Wisconsin is the state that leads production of cheese in the country, it is quite obvious that cheese consumption and production is a vital area of our own state and local economies.  If we were to do what this billboard wants us to do and cut the cheese out of our diet, we will be no better than what those asshole (Republicans/ Democrats) (circle one) in Washington who are killing jobs with their overly zealous (tax cuts for fat cats / spending).  All we Wisconsinites are trying to do is to take charge of the economy, support our local businesses.  You know, buy ‘Merican.  But these hippie (I’m assuming here, but they’re from Washington.  State, that is.) are trying to get us to stop consuming cheese, which could easily be likened to state suicide.  I mean, how would you feel if a group told people in Michigan to stop buying Fords?  How well would it go over if you told Swiss people to not buy utility knives or those metal water bottles?  Or told all those bitches in LA with low self-esteem that they can’t buy breast implants?  Cheese is vital to our economy, and we are here to support it.

The second side of me being offended is that they are insinuating that we, as Wisconsinites, are fat.  Oh, I’m sorry, I meant overweight and/or obese.  I, personally, am offended.  Some people look at me and call me fat, but for fuck’s sake dude, I’m a panda bear.  I am well, WELL underneath the average weight of an adult male panda, which is usually around 350 pounds.  But that’s beside the point.  Have you ever been on a farm?  Do you know the kind of work that they have to do?  Have you ever met a farmhand?  Honestly, it’s like a beef, cheese, and corn diet will automatically make you 6’5″ and 325 pounds.  and a lean 325 pounds at that, those guys are just big.  Everything about them is honestly like 1.5 times the size of normal people’s.

But the issue is, they seem to think that they know what fat/overweight/obese is, and they want to tell us that we are too damn big.  Well, listen, I’ve got some news for them.  We know we’re big.  And we’re OK with that.  If we live in a state where we have to be slightly unhealthy in order for our state and economy to function properly, then so be it.  But don’t tell us we’re too fat.  We know what amount of fat is OK and when it gets to be too much.  We all even have our own little ways of knowing it.  Like, if we wear a large t-shirt and our lovehandles are CLEARLY defined because it is so tight, then we are too big.  If a lady’s grannie panties by the end of the day ALWAYS end up looking like a thong, then they might need to go for a bike ride.  Or better yet, get a stationary bike (Not because they’re fat, but because of the drunk drivers (this is Wisconsin (safety first!))).  Or if we are a man and we lay down on our side to go to bed and we put both of our hands underneath our head because we can’t find a pillow that has that just-right amount of lift without being too fucking hard and our tits are touching each other, maybe we’ve gone a little too far with the cheese.  Or if, when we’re having sex, our stomachs are so big and so heavy that they press against the stomach of the girl and when our bellybuttons match up just right the air gets compressed so much that it is forced out of our bellybuttons and in between our stomachs making a farting noise that makes you laugh you ass off but not stop thrusting (priorities), then and only then, will we lay off of the cheese.

But until the day comes that those things happen, we will continue to support our local and state economies, we will continue eat cheese, and goddamnit we will continue to be beautiful.

Until next time,

-Panda