I’m Bored With Life And Life Is Bored With Me
By Brian Polk
Published Issue 114, June 2023
If I Ever Get Sober, I’m Going To Become One Of Those Guys Who’s Really Into Tea
Although I have no plans to quit any of the substances that make my life more bearable, I have given some thought to the person I would want to be if I ever have to go sober. Whether my new drug-free lifestyle ends up being doctor-demanded or court-ordered, it will definitely incorporate a comprehensive knowledge and deep appreciation for various kinds of tea. Green, black, white, oolong — I will have weirdly passionate opinions on all of these. And if anyone asks if herbal tea is real tea, I simply won’t be able to hide my contempt: “Of course it isn’t!” I will yell. “It should be illegal for companies to refer to herbal-based hot beverages as ‘tea!’” I’ll also say things like, “You just drink regular green tea and not matcha? Pssh, I guess there’s no accounting for taste.” So I suppose I’ll be one of those people who’s just as obnoxious drunk as I am sober. (Sometimes self-awareness hurts.)
Spotify Should Introduce “Little Sister Listening Mode” That Doesn’t Affect The User’s Algorithm
Every now and again, I get the urge to listen to Wham! or Guns N’ Roses on Spotify, but I don’t want it to affect my carefully curated algorithm. Other times I would like to be able to research pop groups I hear about from the young folk — like 100 gecs or SZA — and it would be great if I didn’t have to see “suggestions” for shitty listen-alikes. Also, there have been times when I let a friend of mine borrow my phone and she used it to listen to Taylor Swift, which negatively impacted my account for months. That’s why I wish Spotify would come up with some kind of mode of listening that wouldn’t track every single song I listen to. They wouldn’t have to call it “Little Sister Listening Mode” either. They could refer to it as “Guilty Pleasure Mode,” “Intellectually Curious Mode,” “I Don’t Really Like Most Of U2’s Later Stuff, I’m Just Listening To ‘Pride (In the Name Of Love)’ For Nostalgic Reasons, So Don’t Ever Sneak The Song ‘Mysterious Ways’ Into One Of My Playlists Mode,” or “Yeah I Like INXS, But I Only Ever Listen To Them, Like, Once Or Twice A Year, So Don’t Get Any Ideas Mode.” Of course, if they’re into the whole brevity thing, they could just have a simple “Do Not Track Mode.” Whatever they call it, I think it’s time they stop bullshitting everyone and give the people what they want for once.
Oftentimes I Think I Could Do A Better Job Of Driving The Street Sweeper, But I Don’t Have Any Data To Back This Up
Based solely on what the street sweeper leaves behind in my local gutter, I have long believed that I could do a better job cleaning the city if I were behind the wheel of a Denver-area street sweeping vehicle. However, I have never driven such a machine, and I have no plans of learning to operate one. So I will never know if I could perform the task better or worse. And even if someone did train me, it would take at least a solid summer before I learned the nuances of operating such specialized machinery. Maybe after a year or so, I might be capable of doing a better job than my regional street sweeper. But I have to be honest, I simply don’t have that kind of time, and I’m not interested in a career change at this juncture. Upon further reflection, what the hell was I thinking? There’s no way I could do any better than the current street sweeper in my area. Sometimes I guess I need to remind myself that I’m not as great as I think I am.
As An Old Who’s Clinging To Relevancy By A Thread, I Would Like To Further Diminish My Cultural Standing By Reminding Everyone That “BRB” and “Be Right Back” Have The Same Number Of Syllables, So You Are Not In Fact Saving Any Time By Vocalizing The Abbreviation
I know the reason a lot of people say “BRB” is so they can flex their Gaming Culture™ identity. So I probably shouldn’t give anyone shit about it. But I’m learning to embrace my personal aging journey (by being a curmudgeon, apparently), so I get to say things that inspire serious eyerolls in the eye sockets of anyone under the age of 30.
Also, Since I’m Here, I Might As Well Drop Another Geezer Opinion Of Mine (Prepare Eyes For Rolling)
A lot of modern electronic music sounds like it was made by someone who typed the following into an AI program: “Write me a backing track that sounds like old school Nintendo music so I can overlay it with silly lyrics that I’ll sing into an auto-tune app because I have no musical talent whatsoever but I still want to rack up Spotify listens to augment my Influencer™ status.” Ha! Take that, youngsters! (I totally just threw out my back typing that last sentence. Also, my tummy hurts a bit from the medium salsa I ate earlier. Looks like I’ll be spending another Saturday night soaking in epsom salt and chugging Pepto …)
After I Sneeze, I’m Going To Start Saying, “You Will Bless Me Now”
Sometimes I’ll sneeze and no one says anything, and that silence is super awkward. In order to circumvent this unpleasant situation, I’m going to start proactively demanding everyone else to bless me immediately after I sneeze. I have no idea what the results will be, but I remain optimistic.
Brian Polk is a Denver-based writer, publisher of The Yellow Rake, and drummer for Joy Subtraction and Simulators. He’s the author of Placement of Character and Turning Failure into Ideology. He likes writing, muck raking, yellow journalism, zines not blogs, cheap booze and punk rock.
Check out Brian’s May Birdy install, Life Is Like A Metaphor, It Doesn’t Make Sense Half The Time, or head to our Explore section to see more of his work.