Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Five things you don't know about me.

I've been tagged by The Bellows to pony up five things that he likely doesn't know about me. But, of course, it's never that simple, is it? Those things can't be mundane, like: I am allergic to cantaloupe. They can't be things I've already disclosed: Somewhere in our house is a camisole that belonged to Wife of DCeiver's freshman roommate, retained because she is sort of famous. And they can't be things about members of my family, such as the fact that I am very very happy my [redacted] is dead, dead, dead and rotting in the ground, because it would piss off the members of my family that I do like.

Also, I suppose they have to at least be an ATTEMPT at entertaining or interesting. And, some degree of self-ridicule/confession seems to be in order. Gack. All right. Here we go. Suck on it, Avent.

1. I cannot pronounce the word "auxiliary."
I'm not much better at spelling it. Yep, I never make it through this word on the first attempt and I often don't fare much better on the second. It's that second "i"--the one that really doesn't need to be there--that flummoxes me, and I just can't seem to plant it in my head to just ignore it. I cannot adequately express how lucky I've been that in some seventeen years of acting and vocal coaching, I've never once worked on a script that contained this word.

2. I am huge Alanis Morrisette fan.
I'm sure I'm disclosing this to my lasting regret, but Alanis is the patron saint of Canada, the land where I will one day be buried. And, yeah, I am just a huge old embarrassing fan of hers. My wife's inability to enjoy her debut album was a difficult thing for us to get through. Thankfully, she came around on the second. And, seriously, people, you are all free to discount anything and everything I ever say about music again, ever.

3. The first CD I ever owned.
Diary, by Sunny Day Real Estate

4. I have a true story that no one EVER believes.
I was in charge of getting all of groomsmen tuxedoes for my wedding. Simple enough: call 'em up. Tell them to head to a tailor to get measured up, report the findings to me so I could have something nice for 'em to wear when they got to DC. I collected them, put them on cards and handed them over to the tux place. That evening, they called, and we had this conversation:

TUX GUY: Hello, my I speak to the DCeiver?

DCeiver: That's me.

TUX GUY: Evening, sir, this is Tux Guy from the Tux Place. I've got the measurements for your party's tuxes, and I had a quick question about one of your groomsmen.

DCeiver: Sure. Is there a problem?

TUX GUY: Yes, sir. For the gentleman, K. Z., we aren't sure about his arm length measurement.

DCeiver: Did he not provide you with one?

TUX GUY: No, he did. We just don't think it's correct. Can you contact him and get the correct measurement?

DCeiver: Actually, no. He's on the road for the next few days and I don't have a contact number. I can try his wife, though...are you sure that he's got that measurement incorrect? He's something of a clotheshorse. Of all the guys, it'd surprise me the most if he screwed up a measurement.

TUX GUY: Well, let me ask you this, sir: Your friend, KZ...does he have some kind of flipper for arms, like a thalidomide baby?

DCeiver: Yeah, I'll his wife and get back to you.

5. Here's Exhibit A in the case for me going to Hell.
Go get some snacks or a quick nap. This is going to be long and involved. This is perhaps the most jackass move, the most reprehensible thing I've ever been a party to. I'm not the guiltiest party, to be sure, but I don't let myself off the hook for the part I played in this story. I had plenty of chances to put a stop to this, and I didn't.

It was senior year in high school, and prom plans were being hatched. Here's your cast of characters, names changed.

Friends of DCeiver: Mitty, and Malick
Erika, dating Malick
Dipshitette, a strumpet

Here's the deal. I was a senior in high school, as was Mitty. He and I were tight, and we decided to collaborate on prom plans--the dinner, the dessert, the ride, the whole nine. Pretty early on, we thought it would be a good idea to bring in a third collaborator--the more the merrier, after all--plus, the extra monetary contribution would ensure the perfect evening. It seemed natural to bring in our friend, Malick. Malick was a freshman at William and Mary, but an alum of our high school and he had been dating the same person for two years--Erika: a junior at our school, a good friend of mine, and the neighbor of Mitty. Erika thought that the six of us would have a fabulous time, so, I put in a call to Malick to see if he wanted in. He thought it was a perfect idea.

Everything seemed fine. We were happy to have him involved, happy to have Erika involved, pleased that the extra walking around money got us what we wanted. We made plans, contracted a limo, rented some clothes, made reservations. It didn't strike me or Mitty as funny that everytime we'd run something by her she'd always say, "As for Malick, he hasn't told me his opinion, you'll have to call him and ask." It never occurred to us that anything was wrong.

But something was wrong. Deeply wrong. Frankly, disturbingly wrong. Because, as it happened, Malick actually had no intention of taking good-hearted-and-true Erika to prom. Oh, no. No, no, no. He was totes stringing her along, and getting me and Mitty all tripped up in the curlicues and loops of the stringing along. Bizarrely...and I mean "BIZARRELY!"--like a cuckoo popping out of a broken clock, clucking "bii--ZAAR--ley!...bii--ZAAR--ley!...bii--ZAAR--ley!"...Malick had arranged to take Dipshitette to prom. HERE'S WHAT WAS SUPERIFFICALLY FUCKED ABOUT THAT: Dipshitette was a freshman stoodent at Bill Plus The Bitch U. who had no connection to our high school AT ALL! I mean, what the Little Lord Fuckington Fuck was THAT about? It was stupid, worrisome, embarrassing, disturbing, and deeply weird. This was the first time it occurred to me that Malick just might be a deeply stupid person.

Of course, we found out all of this way too late to do anything about it. We were well and roundly fucked, because we were dependent on Malick now to make everything work. Of course, principle demanded that we at least do something to defend Erika's honor, but we remained silent. To her credit, she never singled Mitty or I out for blame, but still, man, I felt bad. Real bad.

And things were soon to get a whole lot worse. I told you to get some snacks.

It was the day before prom. Lunchtime. The prom tickets were on sale. I had brought money to get my own pair and the pair for Malick and his inane, stupid date. Mitty had already procured his. I got up and waited in line, all the while thinking about how fucked it was I was getting tickets for Malick, but not Erika. Oh, well. It was shaping up to be the shittiest prom ever. Best to be thankful the worst was over. Just get through the next couple days and file the experience away in the giant mental bin marked "High School is for dick-ass chumps anyway." I finally found myself at the front of the line, facing my friend Alexis, who was selling tickets, when I realized something I should have realized many, many days before. Something that sent me, hastily away from the ticket booth and a perplexed Alexis, back to the Cafe to have a hurried conversation with Mitty. This is basically how it went down:

Me: Dude. We have a problem.

He: What?

Me: I can't get his tickets! We're only allowed to buy tickets for ourselves and our date.

He: Fuck. Of course. We'll just have to tell him that he needs to get over here tomorrow and buy his own.

Me: Uhm...that's a no can do, too. He's not a student here anymore, and neither is his date! They won't sell him any tickets either.

He: Okay. Look, I'll get back in line and just get two more tickets.

Me: You don't understand. You can't do that either. They have a list of everyone who's eligible to buy tickets and they're checking people off as they get them. They already know you have tickets. Fuck! After all this shit, we're going to have to sneak jackass and his jackass, got nothing to do with our high school date into what's basically going to be the worst Prom ever.

He: We are NOT sneaking anyone into anything. There's got to be some way of getting tickets.

Me: I don't see how we're going to do that! We would have to find someone who is a junior or senior who's got no plans on going to the Prom to stand in line for us and get some non-student schmuck and his date their tickets!

He: I'm sure there are plenty of juniors and seniors not going to the prom!

Me: What are we gonna do? Ask around? And why on earth would some random person who's probably cursing all the prom hoopla want to do us this favor?

He: We'll ask someone we know!

Me: Who? Who do you know that could do that for us? I don't know anyone. In fact, the only person I can think of--


Me: No, no, no. Hell, no. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.

Oh...but: yes. That's PRECISELY who was asked.

The stupid prom came and went. Everyone had a lousy time. Malick was basically beginning down his path to utter dickdom. I was soon glad to be rid of him. I didn't have to be the one to go ask Erika to buy the tickets, and in time, we spoke no more of what had transpired. If it makes you feel any better, Malick went on to have an awful time in college, an awful marriage, and an awful divorce.

But yeah, I'm totally going to hell.

And that's five things you probably didn't know about me.


Andy said...

That was a cringe-worthy, tears of laughter story right there. Excellent work.

Anonymous said...

You can be buried in my backyard in nova scotia when i get my house on a cliff overlooking the ocean


Brunch Bird said...

On the short arm tux measurements I can't help thinking of the Stonehenge measurements from Spinal Tap.

Rusty said...

When you mention the Alanis debut album, do you mean Jagged Little Pill? You can't possibly be talking about that teeny-bopper stuff she did in Canada.

Then again, what do I know. I unironically like Avril Lavigne.

Amy said...

That's a beautiful story, that prom story. Too bad "Freaks and Geeks" didn't make it past the first season because you could have sold that to them as a script. Brilliant, devastating. So glad you shared it.