Stuffin’ It

Let me start this post by saying that I am a Christian, of the Church of Christ denomination. With that out of the way, let me begin this rage-inducing post (for other Christians, though non-Christians will likely be interested in reading it):

"If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing." Corinthians 1 13:1-3, NIV translation.

I don’t do scriptural hit and runs on the Internet so, for a bit, I’m gonna rant.

In this verse Paul, like the Shaft theme song, says to shut yo’ mouf. In Matthew 10:14, Jesus himself says to stuff it and skip town if people don’t want to listen to you. Maybe look back, thinkin’ “oookay, guys”, but the point here is that you don’t stick around where you aren’t welcome.

REAL TALK: Like, half of what Jesus said is about you shutting your face instead of actin’ stupid, that whole “they will know my followers by their actions” thing. Sharing a Facebook post praising Chik Fil’A so does not count as an action. It counts as blabbing that no one wants to hear. It’s one of those things that people mark down for further review when they feel like thinning out their Friends List. Then they shake your wall-spamming dust off of their feet.

The Bible tries its darnedest to get you to shush when you’ve got nothin’ to say. If you’re flailing your arms and screamin’ about Jesus while you listen to a dreadful Christian music radio station (really, people, KLOVE is terrible, go listen to Drowning Man by U2, something with some soul) and don’t know how to pronounce the word alcohol, and wear your WWJD bracelet and get all huffy when someone suggests inclusivity at a company event, you have gotten your reward in full (wham, Matthew 6:2!). Enjoy your car-fish-scented bubble.

There’s this INSANE persecution complex going around in which SEVENTY-SIX PERCENT of the population of the United States is boo-hooin’ because maybe non-Christians are okay and stuff and want to do things, because, ya know, that’s kind of the entire point of the country’s founding precepts. Plenty of the founding fathers were Deists, they didn’t even begin to believe in Christ. There’s also this big cloud of Muslim-fear, which is HILARIOUS considering that there are 244 million Christians in the US (the single largest Christian population in the world), as opposed to 2.4 million Muslims. (These figures are from Wikipedia)

If American Muslims were made entirely of laser beams, Christians would still win in a fist-fight (this figure is absolutely not according to Wikipedia). Those are the numbers involved here. Even world wide, it’s 2.2 billion Christians to 1.6 Billion Muslims. Stop making up stuff about hostile takeovers of our government, it’s beyond idiotic.

Then you’ve got another layer of crazy, where people say things like “But they’re not all true Christians!” as if:

1. That’s some sort of definable thing that some cocky sonnuva has the authority to declare, despite such things pretty explicitly being the provenance of only God himself, and:

2. This runs under the assumption that every single other system that even marginally includes humans isn’t made up of a majority of people who suck at it.

When you say things like that, when you act like [Movie Voice]THE ONLY SANE MAN IN A WORLD GONE MAD[/Movie Voice], that’s delusional. In the very same book we so love, Proverbs informs us that folks have always been, and will always be evil - there is nothing new under the sun, etc. No, this nation is not turning against you, you just don’t have the clearest memories of the awful things that have always happened in American History. If you are a Christian and you don’t like wherever you think this country is headed (which in itself is a gross oversimplification as far as concepts go), you should keep in mind the previously used population figures and understand that, purely based on population proportions (but probably even more so due to the underlying stigma of being non-Christian in the government), 3/4ths of the things that happen in the US have something to do with the actions of Christians. If you, as an American, think the US is blowin’ it (whatever “it” is), it might be because YOU ARE BLOWING IT.

I know, what a terrible concept. “Surely, not I?” (Matthew 26:25).

You might suck. You might just really be truly awful. You might love Jesus, and read your Bible, and go to Church, and none of it matters because you’re still kind of scared of brown people or gays or whatever, and also are just sort of generally terrible. This absolutely could be the case, and don’t assume it isn’t.

But hey, those scary racist, misogynist, hateful people who are surely not within my circle of influence don’t speak for me, right?

Wrong. They do speak for you. They speak for all of us, because those of us who read The Book and didn’t decide on hating everything that moves don’t speak as loudly as them. Even simply for this post, and because hey, this is the Internet, I will likely get flak because of what the loud people do every day. From where I will receive flak, only time (5 minutes, right?) will tell, but I’m sure some of the trajectories will do nothing but disappoint.

I can’t reach everyone with this rant, and that’s cool. If you don’t like this, just don’t repost/share/retweet it. But if you do, please, show it around, and for goodness sake, if you get caught up on the fact that I sound so darn aggressive in parts of this, you clearly are too scared to read it, so knock that junk off, and then be very nice and quiet and open doors for people and smile and suck it up and mean it.

Welsh Trench Sword

From a catalog that we have no idea why we get it. DOES WWI LOOK LIKE THE REN FAIR TO YOU PEOPLE

So, picture this: You’re stuck in a hole in  France, having to stab Germans despite being in an era just chock full of… just, so many guns. You have to wear a gas mask some times, but it’s kind of a sucky gas-mask (heh), and they’ve invented these giant metal bricks covered in guns that you can do very little about.

Then, to top it all off, you’re Welsh, so absolutely no one understands you when you speak.

World War One really sucked, guys.

Senior Year Project of Win

I found an excuse to do a presentation on Warhammer 40,000 Space Marines in regards to Greco-Roman heroism in class the other day, and that put me in mind of the times a school project has aligned perfectly. For example, I had to do a presentation based on Gulliver’s Travels for English in my Senior Year of High School. I spoke about it, and then played myself out with a music video. It was awesome and was accompanied by the lovely music of Kamelot.

Oh, look, a Youtube video of it. Crazy. BEHOLD:

It was the end of the year project, so I was totally the only person to put in real effort. Just sayin’.

Not that I’m an over achiever, I friggin’ blew Senior Year. I passed, but dang.

My Childhood

On a whim (I operate this Tumblr purely on whim, so that’s not really significant), I went and looked up the first episode of Gargoyles, aka one of the coolest shows ever. Inspired by that, I have here assembled the intros to the stupidly cool things I watched as a kid, each of which can be credited with making me so darn awesome.

We may have only had grunge and flannel shirts the rest of the time, but the 90’s had some pimpin’ kid’s shows.

Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers

If anyone ever spells it with a G on the end, they’re a poser. It’s morphin’ and everyone knows it.

I think it’s a good thing that this took place in the 90’s, because if Zordon had asked for teenagers with attitude at basically any other point in history, his place would have been trashed, and Alpha would have had to drag out like five Johnny Rottens or something. It could have been bad, is what I’m sayin’.

Transformers G1

LASERS. Just LASERS. And planes. And tanks. And trucks.

There is so little you need to know to watch Transformers - Autobots are good, Decepticons are bad. LASERS.

X-Men Cartoon

No words. Just…no words.

Some mother once said to my mom that she didn’t let her kids watch X-Men because it was violent. My mom responded by talking about the themes of prejudice and justice prevalent in the show, and how the X-Men did what was necessary and all that. All I knew: so much cool factor.

Those kids who didn’t get to watch it? They all unironically watch Nicholas Sparks movies. I KNOW it.


Goliath was so. Frikkin’. Cool. He had rockin’ hair, too.

Gargoyles was some dark stuff, man. First twenty minutes of the series and you’ve already had a lot of people being thrown from buildings. It basically predated all the supernatural cop shows we’ve got now, but with 900 times more cool factor. In no other place can you find a waking up sequence as cool as in Gargoyles.

DESTROY ALL MONSTERS (jk dun mess with Toho)

It’s at times like these that I think back fondly on the last couple decades of my life.

I still, to this day, remember the events of 1998. Several major cities destroyed by monsters, the world saved from alien invasion. Then, to top it all off, time travelers went and made a movie about it in 1968. Ha, those jokers.

Anyway, I was going to have you witness a fantastic recreation of that historic day that was more than 24 seconds long. However, it seems that Toho is… protective of their stuff, so the five minute clip was down in hours, and YouTube is mad at me now.

Then again, it might be because I tauntingly made this call to Toho Ltd. immediately after uploading the video:

Anyway, as far as timelines go, we’re still on schedule for a Nuclear War in the Middle East in 2015. It’ll be okay until we make the first Androsynth in 2019, because after that things become hazy. Suffice to say, we get contacted by the Chenjesu at Ceres base in the asteroid belt in 2112, and then there’s all this war and stuff, blah blah blah.

But for now, 1998 still wins as being a real big year.

Let’s Talk About Hats

You know what modern people are lacking? Hats.

There was a man without a hat in this picture, but he was tackled and dragged off by the police for public indecency.

The only people that wear hats nowadays tend to be insufferable hipsters out of Target catalogs. I’m not here to talk about them - no one wants to talk about them (not even they do). No, I am here, as a non-hipster hat-wearer, to tell you men how to wear hats like the proud British Army soldiers you are, and why.

Let’s start with a simple demonstration of the importance of hats.

Mustaches are a separate article. Not everyone can pull e’m off. Sorry.

Since the man on the left, who I’m relatively sure is my father - making him a Time Traveller - is wearing a hat, he is much cooler than the man on the right…who is J.R.R. Tolkein. That’s right, with a hat, you have a leg up on the creator of Lord of the Rings. Even being a Time Traveller isn’t enough to get you that alone. As a side note, if you do not rate J.R.R. Tolkein as being cool, it is because you are an objectively bad person who eats babies.

In this post, I will use the Stroker, or Driving Hat, as my demonstration of Hattiness and Hat-usage. Here is my Senior Year Orchestra Picture.

I have some facial hair and a good foot of heavy metal hair now, so if you don’t wear a hat I clearly have mounds more testosterone than you at this point. Not Pictured: All the fainting super-models.

This would be a random picture of some kid with a violin, except I am TOTALLY wearing a hat, thus raising the cool-factor by about i. That’s right, it’s not even feasible to imagine how to calculate how much cooler the hat makes this picture.

You may recognize that style of hat as being worn by some Austin-type hipsters. I am here to tell you that I was wearing that hat before them, and before Brad Pitt started up on it. We must not relent our hats to people who don’t know how to wear them!

I know your parents probably told you not to wear hats inside, but this isn’t wholly true: a formal hat can be worn inside, though should of course be removed as etiquette demands (the flag passing by, prayer, when bowing, thrown into the audience before you play a solo, etc.). Just so you know.

The first thing about choosing a manly hat (not just a utilitarian I-have-a-bald-spot hat) is to not choose a Baseball Cap. You probably don’t even play baseball. That’s like deciding you need to dress nicer and then buying a bunch of T-Shirts.

There are many kinds of hats, and you can have a mix of them, but only some hats work for some people. Of course, you should never wear formal hats with informal outfits, and visa versa. Baseball hats do not go with polo shirts, for example.

Bowler hats don’t go without jackets, coats, etc. Wearing only a vest with a bowler hat makes you look like a hipster. Bowlers are heavy-lifting hats - they need more of an outfit to make them work, or an honest, non-metrosexual beard and mustache combo. Pork-Pie hats, a sort of Bowler hat variant, should mainly stay on a woman, or with your Steampunk outfit (none of that was a criticism, believe it or not). They just don’t work as a non-hipster hat unless you go all-out 30’s-40’s formal (which involves certain tie designs, vest types, lapel sizes, etc.). It’s a time-locked hat for the most part.

Strokers are highly versatile, and it depends on the hat material and construction as to their level of formality. Additionally, their frame-less design makes them satisfying to throw into a crowd of adoring fans, or store in your pocket before throwing them into said crowd.

Fedoras come in numerous varieties, and should only be reserved for more formal outfits. I know, Indiana Jones wore a fedora and lost his shirt half the time. You are not cool enough to have a signature hat that stays on regardless of outfit. Suck it up, cowboy.

Speaking of Cowboys, unless you are in a Texas Swing Band, are currently at a Western bar, or actually work on a ranch, don’t wear a frikkin’ cowboy hat. Same goes for the boots, and one should not be worn without the other. Yes, this means that the vast majority of the population of Texas is in horrible violation of Cowboy hat etiquette. If you are an accountant and your son drives an F-350 with his cowboy hat and boots, you need to sit him down and have a long talk about why he doubts his penis so much.

As you can see, these things vary, but I’ll lay out some guidelines using my own hat collection:

Yes, 10 hats. There is one that is not quite a stroker, but we’ll get to it later.

Here is my collection. Note that you do not need this many hats. One or two will often do. Still, note the variety in color and shape. Hats need to match your outfit. Obviously, this makes Black hats pretty versatile.

Many hats are for every day occasions. These non-specialized hats are important if you wish to add a hat to your daily repertoire. They are more generalized varieties of the chosen hat type, and are most defined by what they are NOT.

There is no mnemonic to remember the colors of the hat spectrum, sorry.

Then you have outdoors hats, for when you want to wear your stylish man-hat outside. These hats, for obvious reasons, need to breathe better than other hats, via mesh, holes, or being straw (though straw hat style can sometimes be touchy).

That said, I try and avoid going outside. I have hair down to my shoulder blades, and I live in Texas, so it is friggin’ HOT out there.

Then we have cold or winter hats. These need to be warmer for obvious reasons, but you don’t need to wuss out and pull on ear-flaps in most climates if you have a good collar available. No need to eskimo-out if you don’t have to.

This one is sort of a cross between a military cap and a 20’s baseball hat. Old people are weird.

Finally, there is the mightiest form of hat: the formal hat. This doesn’t need to be a Top Hat, and in fact, it is by necessity and decency that top hats are reserved for only the most formal and exquisite of occasions. Prince William got married in a Top Hat. Even he doesn’t touch top hats outside of things like that, and he’s literally a friggin’ Prince. Formal hats are made of better materials, look better, and generally make it obvious that they are formal.

Yes, I wear a dead lamb on top of my head when at my best.

So you see, hats are nuanced and complex, but also very complimentary and totally awesome. However, make sure that, before you choose a hat, you are able to wear it. Notch wears a bowler hat and it works because his face is rounded. I could not wear a bowler hat. With more pointed features, the elongated stroker works better for me. Fedora variants require some level of handsomeness, period, as well as a more trim frame unless you intend to look like Orson Welles.

Clark Gable and I have both worn this hat. Become jealous.

So, go forth, and take back the concept of man-hats!