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Bug the Columnist

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March 25, 1997
Where I Draw the Line

Well, this is just delightful. In less than one week, I've already managed to become the Ned Beatty of the internet. Whereas good old Ned, one of the greatest actors in the history of everything, a man who I still say is the centerpiece of the movie "Network", even though not once did he stick his big fat head outside a window and scream "I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not gonna, you know, I mean, this sucks!" or anything, whereas he will continue only to be known as the guy who had the one-way sign on his ass spun around by that guy in "Deliverance", it now seems as if I will end up being known mainly for that silly little line graphic that appears at the end of every page. You know, this one:

A little throwaway thing I did for a cheap laugh, in case nobody found the biting, searing, gnawing humor in the column itself to be riotous enough, and now it's my trademark. I mean, just look at these actual, totally paraphrased because I threw them away letters that I received this week:

Dear Humor Column Guy,

That line is cool. How come I can't find your books in the bookstore? By the way, you suck. Also, your hit counter is stuck at 3. -ClueMaster General

Mr. Parrish,

I found your column to be both condescending, tedious, and also repetitive. Yes, I know that's three things. Shut up. You suck. That little line graphic is funny as shit. By the way, mention me in your next column. -Ned

There were several more letters like this. However, I won't bother printing them out here, since many of them were not specifically related to this column, and most of them were from the phone company requesting that I pay them for the services they had provided. In fact, they had nothing to do with the column, or that stupid little line, but most of them did say "you suck" at some point.

[Ed Note: Due to the positive feedback received regarding the line graphic, we have decided to insert them into Mr. Parrish's column whenever we feel the humor level has dropped below an acceptable point. We believe this will ensure consistency of enjoyment for you, the reader, as well as take up a lot of space to make the column look longer than it is. Thank you.]

Terrific. Well, that kinda takes the pressure off me, now doesn't it? Fine. I'll just spend the whole damn column talking about how we decided to arrange the condiments in our refrigerator. Let's see if it works.

Adventures in Mustard!

Welcome to the first issue of my new feature, where we will be discussing the proper locations of various mustards in your standard kitchen refrigerator. It all started when I saw the Grey Poupon sitting underneath the vegetable drawer, and I screamed, "Holy Christ! What the

Wow. It worked. This has just opened up to me whole new worlds of opportunities for not having to be funny at all. Which reminds me of the time when we were all stuck inside from the Blizzard of 19 Something, and I wanted to play backgammon. My mom said, "Backgammon? That sounds like fun!" So we got out the backgammon set and started playing. I rolled a four and a six. You can imagine the string of expletives that my mother let loose with. Anyway, then she rolled a three and

[Ed Note: Due to legal issues regarding Mr. Parrish's contract, The Perimeter has been temporarily discontinued. We apologize for any inconvenience, but we cannot, in good conscience, allow this man to continue this insipid column. He sucks. Good thing that line was so funny.]

[Bob Note: Aw, man. This blows.]

[Ed Note: What's your problem?]

[Bob Note: We want to read the rest of the column. It was just getting good.]

[Ed Note: No, he was being stupid, which as I alluded to, is in violation of his contract. Specifically, section C, subsection Q, paragraph purple, line monkey: "Stupid = bad."]

[Bob Note: How can stupid be bad? Dave Barry made an entire career out of being stupid. Now there's like fifty-three billion Dave Barry clones out there on the net, all trying to reach that supreme level of stupidity, all advertising themselves like, "Hey, we're just like Dave Barry!", and, "If you like Dave Barry, you'll be mildly amused by our ripoff guy!"]

[Ed Note: Are you making that up?]

[Bob Note: I am not making this up.]

[Ed Note: Hey, where's that twenty bucks you owe me, spunkface?]

[Bob Note: Shut up, Ed. Kiss my ass.]

[Ed Note: Why, you motherf-]

[Bob Gun: BANG!]

[Ed Sucking Chest Wound: slllllluurrrp]

[Bob Gloat: Ed's dead, baby. Ed's dead. Hehehehehe.]

[Musical Note: B flat]

en I said, "Mom! We're not playing strip backgammon! Put your bra back on before the dog starts-

Oh. Hello? What happened? Everyone still there?

Alright, anyway, the point of this was that even though you might have found the little line graphic to be funny, maybe even the funniest part of the first column, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't keep all of your mustard cleanly arranged somewhere in the door shelves. Or whatever you call them.

So my female cat gave birth this week. I was quite excited to hear this news, as I had just thought she had been eating way too many fried mozzarella sticks for the last couple months. Unfortunately, when I got home I discovered that she had given birth to mice. I don't know how this happened, but we had four little tiny, hairy, squeaking micro-tribbles in a big lump under the bed. My lovely companion assures me that they're all actually kittens, they just look funny when they're newborn like that, but just in case, I put a little trap with some cheese right next to them. And not just any old cheese neither. Put a big ol' wheel of gouda right on that puppy. Gonna catch me some SOPHISTICATED varmints, I am! Woooooeeeeee!!!

Things are progressing nicely. So far I've caught two. Now, I grew up on a farm, where you couldn't swing a dead cat without hitting a dead cat, but I don't know if you've ever had the scintillating experience of seeing a two-day old dead kitten. Let me just put it this way. They're a lot like two-day old live kittens, except much friendlier. We're thinking of keeping the two I caught, and giving away the remaining ones. That way visitors to our home would say such things as, "What remarkably nice kittens you have!" and "What is that godawful smell?"

All I can tell you is, never name kittens that are under two weeks old, because you're just begging for heartache. The truth is, the mommy cat, being rather petite and young herself, just couldn't handle the pressure of having four of these guys. At least that's what I think. My grandmother had five kids, and you can just tell by the look in her eye that even though she'll talk about how wonderful her children were, she still feels like life ran over her with a Carnival Cruiseliner. I guess it's one of those sick twists of nature that it's the petowners that are hurt the most by this. The cats, troopers (or just oblivious) all around, don't seem too affected by this. We try to comfort them, but they seem disinterested, so we turn to each other, and hope for the best for the remaining two.

And all of you people who continue to believe in fairy tales of some benign, righteous supreme power, all I can tell you is to look in the yet-unopened eyes of a tiny little puffball, whose short struggle for life was cut short merely for the want of nourishment from its own mother, and maybe it'll dawn on you what an unbelievably sick fucker that guy must be. That ain't no joke, this just pisses me off.

But other than that, things are just moving along swimmingly (or swimming along movingly) over here. We've decided to join a bowling league. Now, bowling and humor columns are nearly synonymous, so it's almost too easy to make jokes about it. Lemme just say that the decision to join up went something like, "Gee, I could go for a beer and some pizza. Let's join a bowling league!" Also, the bowling shoes I rented this weekend were more comfortable than any of the shoes I own. So we're looking forward to, at least once a week, being able to put our feet up, have a nice, greasy dinner, get really loaded, and proudly announce, "Yeah, I exercise. 'nother pitcher over here!"

Bowling leagues have changed somewhat since I was last in one (when I was like, 2 years old or so). There are new types of leagues now with these strange, wonderful new rules. There's a league where knocking down nine pins counts as a strike. There are leagues where you get automatic strikes in the second and ninth frames. There are leagues where you can try to mess up the opponent by screaming ("AUUugugugugughghhhh!!!") right before he lets go of the ball.

The league I'm in ("Friday Fat Fryers"), you don't even use bowling balls, you just take all the empty french fry baskets and plastic beer pitchers you accumulate and, in a violent display of athleticism, throw them down the lane at the pins. You only need eight pins for a strike, and for a spare, you just have to be able to belch louder than the ball waxing machine.

But like I said, bowling jokes are too easy. Hell, bowling is too easy. At least in darts there's a possibility of being fatally wounded by a wild shot.

That's just about going to do it for this week's foray into unabated randomness. Let me just finish with a joke. What do you get when you cross a baked potato with a

Stop that.

[Ed Note: Hehehehehe.]

This page and the contents therein are copyright (C) 1997, by Ben Parrish. Don't mess with it. Or I'll throw food at you.