I suck at a lot of things. For example: basketball. I’m fucking terrible at it. All in all, I’m not entirely unathletic. I grew up being a fast runner and I can play a passable game of pickup baseball, football or soccer. I’m a good swimmer and last time I was on the ice (which, granted was 20 years ago) I was a decent hockey player (for a non Russian/Canadian). But man, I suck at basketball. I can’t dribble, I can’t shoot. I can’t do shit. I can’t even watch basketball, which leads me to another thing I’m bad at: being interested in sports.
I recently read an article by Gavin McInnes where he referred to sports as “gossip for men” because of the sheer mass of levels of commentary and the fact that they’re discussing the interpersonal relationships and body injuries and abilities and general levels of importance of different individuals. When phrased that way, he’s totally right. I personally prefer gossip for women, which is all about tits and who’s fucking who and stuff like that. Tits, fucking, these are things I totally see the appeal of, but sports, watching sports, I’m sorry. I don’t get it. Basketball is squeaky and only becomes semi-interesting about once a game. Football is BORING. Soccer splits the difference between basketball and football by having football’s snail pace and Basketball’s annoying back and forth that’s every once in a while punctuated by some asskicking feat of amazingness. Hockey is too fast to pay attention to. Baseball is an excuse to gorge. Tennis should be completely off television now that we have free pornography on the internet. Golf is an awesome way to stand outside and get hammered with your friends while you drive a tiny battery powered car across a field. That bit completely rules. I see the appeal there 100%. However, the part where you hit the ball, and more to the point, the part where you just WATCH someone else do it completely seems like it sucks. Watching golf is like watching people go on a hike or watching people competitively sip lemonade on their porch. NASCAR is watching things go in circles and sometimes burst into flames.
What else is there? I don’t know man. But if you can name the sport, I don’t like watching it. I’m terrible at being a spectator of athletics, though I DO like to go to baseball games, but that’s because I like the tradition and old timeyness and the gorging. I don’t know that I’d want to actually ever pay attention if there were no hotdogs and beer.
So yeah. I’m bad at watching sports. I don’t blame sports. I blame me. I know you all love sports and I’m not trying to imply that you’re wrong. It’s a defect I have. I also don’t love Nirvana or the Pixies or hoppy beer. I realize you do. Again, it’s not you, it’s me. I’m bad at liking proto-grunge and IPA’s. I don’t know how you people do it. Whatever. Good on ya.
What else do I suck at? I suck at expressing or feeling empathy in one on one situations. I suck at thinking things up (thoughts, notions, plans etc). I suck at listening to something I’m not genuinely interested in and I suck at feigning interest. I suck at not twiddling around on my phone like an asshole at inappropriate times. I suck at figuring out when a topic or joke has run its course. I suck at recognizing my own output for what it is, without falling irrationally in love with it, be it a song or a Tweet or a child I’ve created. I suck at graphic design. I suck at accounting and finance. I suck at embracing and mastering technology. I suck at driving and I suck at being honest with myself and others, though I’m WAY more honest with others than I am with myself.
I’m not a great singer, but I wouldn’t say I SUCK at singing. I DO, however suck at the guitar, but I’m better than you, most likely. I suck at the guitar as badly as you can suck and still potentially be compelling to listen to. I suck at keeping in touch with people I’ve loved in the past and I suck at picking the right people from my past to stay in touch with, which is to say, I’ve stayed in touch with people who totally blow and I’ve lost touch with or even willfully ignored wonderful, great friends. I suck at sleeping and I suck at picking places to go when I need to eat and also to do work on the internet. I suck at most areas that involve sensitivity. I’m only tangentially concerned with cleanliness.
Now, that being said, there are a few things I’m good at, and I’d like to share those things with you too. You know those Asian balls that you spin in your hand and they are supposed to relax you? You’re supposed to spin them so they don’t touch and the idea is that they stimulate points in your hands that calm your entire system down, acupuncture style. I’m great at twirling those balls. I can do it quickly and deftly with both hands so the balls never touch, AND I can do it both clockwise and counterclockwise. This is the bit that sets me apart from most people when it comes to twirling those balls: the ability to go backwards and still not have them clank together. I’m good at that. I can also cook a steak really well, and I’m good at scrambling eggs. My brain has an almost supernatural ability to quickly turn whatever you just said into a penis joke. I’m good at remembering interesting details. I’m good at having really, really super important talks with people I care about, but this is a weird one, because I’m TERRIBLE at having just ‘kind of’, or even ‘very’ important talks with just about everyone, regardless of how much I like you. However, if there’s something deeply deeply wrong or important (like a death or something of that nature), and you’re someone I know rather well, I can usually get to the core of that stuff pretty deftly.
I’m good at entertaining a small to medium-sized room full of western rock fans using nothing more than an acoustic guitar, though, there are some stipulations there. Like, while the rock fans in question don’t have to have any idea who I am, I can’t just wow a room of Pennywise fans or a group of Los Crudos fans. I’d probably fall a little flat in a room full of any fans that were into anything too overly aggressive, like metal, hardcore or whatever that Seether/Nickelback/Chevelle scene is called.
I’m good at discretion and keeping secrets. In fact, I’d say I’m amazing at that. It could be my best quality as a person. I’m pretty terrible in general, but if you tell me a secret and tell me not to tell anyone, it’s not going anywhere. I’m good at judging the funness of bars. I’m good at reading comprehension and I’m good at looking busy when I’m really just kind of fucking around. I’m a good judge of character. Um…That’s about it. Everything else, I’m a varying degree of okay-to-shitty at.
Gosh, this was a fun exercise. Faaaaaaart. Oh, I’m pretty good at sequencing records.
I’m going to see Book Of Mormon tonight. Pretty stoked. Also, happy birthday to the best drummer I know, Neil Hennessy. Go wish him well at @neil_hennessy on Twitter.