Monday, August 25, 2008

Losing My Religion

A duo of young Mormons visited me the other day. Dark suited and softly spoken they stood outside my front door.. I stood just inside the front door wearing only a pair of boxer shorts. It was 11am. I invited them inside. They didn't hesitate. In they came, taking off their backpacks and perching on the edge of the couch. Then they quietly and softly tried to make a Mormon out of me.

I went to put on pants.

Once my pants and I returned, Doug's first question (I don't think Doug was his name but I was very hungover and wasn't paying attention to anything, hence the no-pant door answer) was whether I believe in a supreme being. I said I didn't.

Religious belief is irrational. That doesn't make it wrong. Love is irrational. Laughter too. Life without love or laughter would be a hollow, hollow thing.

Any man's religion is his affair and his alone, but if he tries to foist it upon me then it becomes my affair. He has become a door to door salesman and I am entitled to study the goods. The goods that arrived with Doug and Bigpoppypimpleboy were wierd and shonky.

Apparently in the Mormon Visitors Centre in Utah, a glass box like a vast aquarium holds a life sized model of the church's founder, Joseph Smith. A recording tells of how in 1830 Smith was praying on a mountainside (an aside: why is it always a mountainside or a cave or a barren wasteland these guys are praying in? What the fuck is wrong with a street, or a tastefully decorated living room? Really? Aside over.) when bloody hell and touch my pants, an angel appeared to him. At this point I'm certain bright lights came into play and there was probably singing from angels that looked a little slutty, but in fact weren't.

The recording in Utah explains how the slutty (but not) angels gave Smith some gold plates with church rules written on them. Smith memorized what they said. This was lucky, because by the time he came back from the mountain the golden plates had vanished. Nevertheless, what was on those magic, vanishing golden plates became the basis for the Mormon faith.

I asked Doung and Bigpoppypimpleboy if it was true that Smith might have lost the plates. 'They were taken back,' said Doug. Sure they were Doug.

I asked if they accepted the theory of evolution. They said 'Yes.' I asked if that meant they believed they were descended from apes. 'No,' they both said. They believed, they said, in Adam and Eve.

'Really?' I asked.

They nodded. 'I guess we kind of believe in evolution and Adam And Eve,' explained Doug.

I had no more to say.

Doug and Bigpoppypimpleboy were gentle, courteous, serious, law abiding people. People mock them. People threaten them, abuse them. People like me challenge their ridiculous beliefs, although most of those people would hopefully be wearing pants. Through all this they go quietly and if things get serious they walk away and pray for those without the pants.

A society of people like Doug and Bigpoppypimpleboy would be a society without crime or violence. But it would be hateful. Hateful.

Doug, Bigpoppypimpleboy and I parted amiably. In the beautiful Auckland drizzle I watched as they knocked on the neighbors door.

I removed my pants.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Old Skool

Once upon a time I liked this woman a lot. It should be said that this is not the woman in question in the photo above... Moving on people... Anyway, so then I stopped liking her, or she stopped liking me. Whatever man...

I do remember asking what she had in her kayak. And also asking where she hid the dog. Actually, thinking about it, I may have asked where she hid the God. She was Christian. I also remember hiring ninjas to deliver her a rather impressive bunch of flowers. Anyway, she stopped liking me, or I stopped liking her. In retrospect the ninjas may not have helped.

Nights like this, I really miss my friends that used to live with me.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Self Indulgent (it's not funny)

I generally write a load of old bollocks... No, no, it's true. I really do.

I sit here and write whatever comes into my head. It could be lightbulb related, it could be ninja related, it could be tattoo related. My mind is a cornicopia of a mish-mash of scrambled loves, hates and relatives.

I broke up with a girl tonight. About 84 minutes ago to be exact. It wasn't love, and it should be.

I'm trying to work out where the funny is in the situation and failing like a man that can't find the funny. Perhaps I'm pre-menstrual?

I read a sentence once, a very long time ago. It's from a book. With pages. The line was: "Words destroy the functions of love."

If I think about that sentence literally, it doesn't make any sense. None at all. But the feeling of the sentence... the emotion behind the words, makes perfect sense right now.

Being a massive romantic comedy fan, (and yet somehow still heterosexual) I want my life to be filled with golden light and witty one-liners. Is it too much to ask for me to require the same from a potential?


End of self indulgent.

Touch My Beans

Since Roman times they've been saying silly things about wine - 'in the finish a hint of vanilla and asphalt' is a particular favourite. Nonsense wording aside, wine has continued to do its principle job of making you sleep with people you shouldn't, or say regrettable things at dinner parties. It should be noted that sometimes both of these things happen on the same night and are undoubtably related.

Now however, and this is serious, the high priests of pretension have got their claws into coffee.

Coffee is a simple thing and it's good. In the morning it prises apart the eyelids and unbends the fingers. At work it soothes the hangover. It makes the ideal accompaniment to fifteen cigarettes. It's bad for you. Coffee is awesome.

But now - and I quote a conversation I overheard the other day somewhere in a trendy part of the city:

Waitperson: 'Welcome sir, to our unpretentious brasserie somewhere in the trendy part of the city. My name is Gustave. I am your waitperson today. You may admire my pony-tail. What can I do for you sir?'
Generic Man: 'A cup of coffee please.'
Waitperson: (suppressing a giggle) 'I beg your pardon sir?'

Generic Man
: 'A cup of coffee please...'

: (patronisingly now, for it has dawned on him that he is dealing with Generic Man: 'Do you perchance mean a latte with an acute accent Sir? Or perhaps a Cappuccino with a randon number of p's and c's scattered through it's name and then sprinkled with a light coating of midget dust to disguise the flavour of burnt coffee which you will barely taste anyway due to the seven inches of froth covering the entire cup... Or perhaps a short black is what you require, with or without racial jokes...'

At this point Generic Man realises he has two options. He can leave. Or he can hit the waitperson. While I don't condone violence, unless ninjas are involved, I recommend hitting the waitperson and then biting him when he's on the ground.

Anyway - I say wine is fine as it is. And so is coffee. But for now it seems the pretentious are no longer content in their traditional temples. They are aiming to reach further into our community. They are not welcome in mine.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Freak Me Out

So I've been making music TV in New Zealand for a while. Some good, some not so much. The good has always been because of me, the bad because of you... or someone else... just not me (ask Julia).

I had a meeting on Friday to ask for funding for a pilot episode of a music show that I've been planning in my head since May '06. Let me just reiterate that - It's been in my head since May 2006.

This show is lions and tigers and bears.

But I think I have the funding.

And now I have to do it.


I'm not a fan of cursing... (God looks down and laughs, Matt returns laughter and then realises he doesn't believe in what he's laughing at and looks at his wine and wonders if he's had quite enough for one night)

Wish me luck folks, this'll be interesting.

Ink Me Freely

Poor Mr Williams. Mr Williams is 23 years old and he lives in America. America is the land of the free and the home of the brave so Mr Williams should be happy but he is sad.

One day Mr Williams went to a place where people write on you and you pay them money. And what they write on you doesn't come off. The place he went to was called Eternal Tattoos. Eternal means that what they write on you really seriously doesn't come off.

Lots of people have tattoos. Most of these people are boys. Some girls get tattoos but my mum says these are not nice girls and I shouldn't talk to them, even when they talk to me. My mum says good girls don't get tattoos because good girls have more sense.

Anyway, Mr Willams isn't a girl. He is a very tough man. The trouble was that lots of people didn't know how tough he was so Mr Williams wanted to get a tattoo which would tell them. Then he wouldn't have to bash them all the time. He could just show them his tattoo and they would say, 'Ooooo you're tough Mr Williams,' and he would say, 'Yes.'

So Mr Williams went up to the nice man in Eternal Tattoos and said, 'I would like a tattoo which tells people I am tough.' The nice man said that all tattoos make people think you're tough and what tattoo did Mr Williams want. Mr Williams thought for a bit and he said, 'I want you to write VILLAIN on my arm.'

'Okay,' said the tattooist.

Mr Williams was happy because he knew the word VILLAIN would frighten people. If he went into a bank he could just roll up his sleeve and point at his tattoo and people would say, 'After you Mr Villain,' and let him go to the front of the queue. And if he wanted to buy something in a shop he could ask the price and when the girl in the shop said a big price Mr Williams could point at his arm and say a small price and the girl would say, 'Okay.'

When Mr Williams came out with his new tattoo on his arm he was very proud. The first thing he did was go into a clothes shop and buy several t-shirts with very short sleeves. He put on one of the t-shirts then he went up to an old lady on the street and showed her his tattoo and said. 'Grrrr.'

The old lady opened her handbag and took out her glasses and put them on. Then she started laughing. 'Ha ha,' said the old lady.

'Grrrr,' said Mr Williams very loudly this time, but the old lady laughed and laughed. 'Stop laughing,' said Mr Williams, 'I am a VILLAIN.'

'No you're not,' said the old lady. 'You're a VILLIAN.'

Mr Williams looked at his arm and saw the old lady was right. He was a VILLIAN. Mr Williams sat down in the road and started crying. 'Boo hoo,' said Mr Williams, 'I wanted to be a VILLAIN.'

'There there,' said the old lady and she put her arm around him. 'Don't worry about a silly old tattoo,' She was a very nice old lady.

Mr Williams went back into the clothes shop and swapped his t-shirts for shirts with long sleeves and then he went home to be sad.

Bu the story might still have a happy ending because Mr Williams lives in America which is the land of the free and the home of the brave and a place with lots of lawyers. One day a lawyer heard about the tattoo that was spelt wrong and he went to see Mr Williams. 'I am a lawyer,' said the lawyer. 'I am a villain,' said Mr Williams, carefully covering up his arm, 'I break the law.'

'Don't be silly,' said the lawyer, 'The law is your friend. We will sue the nasty tattooist.'

And they did. And Mr Williams was no longer sad. He was happy, in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


You may not have heard about it, but many years ago I used to have strongly worded arguments with my mother about washing the bathroom floor, mainly about the fact that I wouldn't do it. My argument, which I thought a strong one, was that it would only get dirty again.

Since then, I have learned, for a man, keeping the bathroom clean is easy. You pay someone else to do it. Or you acquire female flatmates (women who know...) that beat you with small forest animals until you clasp a mop in your quivering hands and get down to business.

Keeping the body clean is less easy. I suppose you could pay someone to do it, but that might get complicated, and if you pause to think of a cleaning lady (or flatmate... shudder) with only a cloth between her and your special places, you'll probably head to the shower alone. Maybe.

The first law of the shower states that no two shower controls in the universe are the same. The second law states that the markings on the shower controls bear no relation to the temperature of the water. The third states that, however much a shower control may rotate, the difference between a manly shriek of scalded horror and a manly sigh of contented pleasure is never more than one millimetre.

Years of research and millions of dollars have gone into perfecting a vinyl/plastic/composite bathroom floor material that grips nicely when dry but is deadly when wet. It kills people. Shatters hips, knees and dignity. Of course, when falling you always manage to flick the shower control that one important millimetre and end up crying and scalded or freezing.

Baths however are splendid for some things. The first of which is eating, because a bath is a ready-made and efficient rubbish trap. They're also good for reading in - but not borrowed books. Rule one of baths is that borrowed books fall into it. Rule two is that all other books do too.

Baths also have the added benefit of providing a little extra room for a companion. For this to work with any success you must ensure that you have known the person opposite/on top/under you for at least a week.

And don't offer to pay them to clean the bathroom when you're done.

That would end badly. Trust me on this.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

I Love The Movies

Ben Stiller should star in every movie.

Man, I love Ben Stiller. I can't get enough of him. Someone needs to invent a way to liquify him so he can be injected directly into my veins in super-saturated form, because his monopoly on comedy isn't enough.

I don't know when it dawned on me that we need more movies starring Ben Stiller, but I think it happened around the time I came out of the theater after seeing a preview for "Envy" during "Starsky & Hutch," an ad for "Dodgeball" in the theater lobby, and "Along Came Polly" playing in a theater across the metaphorical street.

That's just not enough for an actor of his caliber. Each of his characters is unique, displaying the full gamut of emotions on the spectrum (of emotions), ranging from: extremely quirky and neurotic to somewhat quirky and neurotic. Ben Stiller should be cloned so that we can have more of his movies released in theaters simultaneously.

Better yet, why not create a movie where Stiller stars in every role? It could be like "Multiplicity," except good. They could call it:

Along Came Something About Royal Focker's Envy for the Dodgeballs of Mystery Men

It would be the best movie ever. It would start out with Ben Stiller trying to revive some obscure children's ball game in order to impress his highschool sweetheart, only to learn that she has psychotic ex-CIA parents who hit it big when they discover a formula that makes shitty movies disappear.

I love movies. I love them with a big moist embrace, but I just hate Ben Stiller.

Mmmmm, moist.

Baby, I'm back

The ninja's banished, the hero triumphant

It's good to be back...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Email Ninjas

Somewhere in the dark of the Auckland day, ninjas came and ninja'd my email. It's got ninja spikes and ninja swords and ninja lawnmowers all through it's email heart. I believe that I have the power to heal it though.

Mind you, I also believe that Uncle Derek really wanted to play hide and seek.

Hopefully my email will not end up the same way as Uncle Derek. Rich and hiding from the authorities.

If needed (untill the ninja menace is banished) I can be got at