I was born. I suffered.
I suffered some more, and hopefully,
I won't die a painful death.
I'm Eric and this is my life.

Best barters of The Old Man


In my never ending quest to recall every brutal and excruciating moment of my life, I’ve decided to take a look back at some of the great barters of The Old Man. This will be a multi-part series, and I expect some collaboration from The Family. 
As you may recall, The Old Man was a famed electrician in my hometown. Cut from the same savvy business acumen as let’s say a Lee Iaccoca, The Old Man could smell a deal from a mile away. Not that they ever resembled anything close to a good deal mind you.
The orange over-sized down coats
My brother, let’s call him, Craig, imparted one such painful, Let’s make a deal moment. So one fall, two of The Old Man’s sons needed winter coats. Let’s call them, Robert and Chris. Well, it just so happens that a certain shrewd Jewish clothing store owner needed some electrical work done at his shop. Oy vey! And he had a deal for my father.
Jewish shop keeper: “Aach, I will give you these two luxurious down jackets, as seen in American Werewolf in London, if you were to wire the gutted fourth floor of my building.”
The Old Man: “Throw in a scarf, and you have a deal sonny boy!”
The coats were marked up to $90 a piece.
Now these down jackets were way too big for two poor bastards and the arms were flopping around on them. But The Old Man had his deal.

Fuckloads of pumpkin-flavored heaven

It’s that time of year when every bloody thing is made with copious amounts of pumpkiny goodness. If you can drink or eat it, odds are, there’s a pumpkin version. But what is it about pumpkin that makes your miserable life just a tad better? Is it a slight reminder of when we had actual fall weather, as opposed to going from summer straight to brutal winter as we have now? And when have you ever just sat down, cracked open a pumpkin and started eating? Does anyone know what an actual pumpkin tastes like?

Years ago, before the pumpkin orgy, the only thing made of pumpkin was pie at Thanksgiving. I suppose that we humans get a taste of something and have to go full-tilt until we go careening off of the ledge. At this point, we’re approaching the ledge, but the amounts of goodies that can be made with pumpkin, are pushing that ledge infinitely far away.

U2: Songs of Innocence. Sure it’s free, but you pay for it with bits of your crushed spirit

There’s nothing I like more than free music. So when U2 announced that it was giving away their new album during the iPhone 6 launch shin-dig, I was mildly excited. Mildly, because I haven’t considered U2 cool since the 90s. And now, I stand firm in this assertion. The songs are filled with an abundance of “oohs” and “aaahs” and also “weooohs”, “ah woah oh we ahs.” It’s horrific. I would so demand my money back, if I had paid for it. Songs will definitely be at home on any generic pop rock radio station.

Musically, there’s nothing interesting or to write home about. It really could be named: 11 Discarded Coldplay Songs

Parentheses are cool
 It’s not that I expected much. But from the band who made Achtung Baby, well, it just falls a tad short. Alas, that was long ago.

Maybe this Apple iTunes album is just the promo for the actual one coming out later in the year?

Oh, your gums are bleeding

Is there anything more depressing/makes you feel fucking old than going to the dentist? Dentists always seem to come up with more and more painful ways to increase the self-loathing. The latest thing is to use these plastic and metal lip prying devices so they can take digital pictures of all of your teeth. It looks like something out of a Marilyn Manson video. Then the hygienist prints them out and shows them to you in all of their excruciating detail. Yes, all the years of drinking coffee and eating popcorn kernels makes a rather hideous close-up.

I’m sure that some of you have experienced the dental pick that shoots a stream of salt water into every nook and cranny. That’s my new favorite. The shear amazement at which the hygienist responds at the site of blood gushing out of your gums is beyond compare. I’m pretty sure that if I jam a surgical-grade steel death pick into any number of soft tissues on my body, blood will come forth.
So there you have it. Go to your dentist and revel in the agony and mortality of it all.

RIP Robin Williams

If someone with millions of dollars and the adoration of millions of people can't find happiness, what's the hope for all the rest of us poor dumb bastards?