But I can appreciate the efforts and achievements of notable artists, actors and literary figures. They are the ones who ceaselessly impress me in their crafts, and they are the kinds of professional contributors I yearn to be. And, if I can manage to weasel some comrade-in-arms kind of support from these accomplished individuals, well, shucks. It'd be like getting an A+ from your favourite teacher in junior high (you know the one I mean *wink*) along with a lingering kiss on the lips, right before summer vacation.
So, here I am today. I'm in the very early stages of my writing career, passionately following something which has mostly been an undisciplined hobby until now. The thing is, since I've embraced my passion (as much as I can afford to at this point in my life, anyway), things are getting exciting. Literary projects which I've had simmering on the back burner for years are becoming less "soupy", materializing into tangible things I soon hope to share with the world. And, as a pleasant byproduct of the process of following a dream, I've been able to meet and chat with tons of wonderful people, some of which, until very recently, I've only dreamed of getting into contact with.
Now, I kinda sorta warned him I would use his name wherever I could to help me sound like a big shot, holding it in front of me like a proud shield into battle to be battered and bruised as I try to make a name for myself, though without being overly abused. So, here we go...
After a few sedentary days sitting in front of my computer, I dusted the potato chips off my chest and finally setup a Twitter account for Biography of a Nobody. I've never had a Twitter account before, personal or otherwise. I've never tweeted anything to anyone, nor did I have much clue as to how to go about it. What were twitter people called, anyway? Twits? Twats? Sounds icky. I didn't know a thing. Still don't, really. I just "knew" then that BOAN should have one. So, I signed up. I was approved! I had an account and everything, yeah baby!! I was pumped, I was excited! My fingers hovered over the keys in giddy anticipation...and...huh. Well. What the frick do you do with this? How to begin? All I could do was plunge in beak first. So, I made like a bird, and I tweeted. My first message was sent out to the world, curious if anyone would come across it. It read: We just hacked into Twitter! They just asked for a user name and password and we broke in on the first try! Booyeah! #myfirsttweet
Someone (a website developer, HLCreation.com. They've earned the right to be included in my blog just for being my first follower) read it, liked it, and said that if I followed their page they would follow mine. So I did, and they did. Instant connection. It was very cool. And, just like that, the power of Twitter rushed by me like the stars at the passing of the Enterprise. Hmm... some geek leaked out there. I'll get a sponge.
Anyway, that did it for me. I was now in contact with a complete stranger someplace else in the world who was just trying to build up a social and professional network, just like me. Inspiration immediately took over: who else could I get into contact with? I'd always heard about celebrities and famous artists having Twitter accounts, keeping their followers abreast of new developments. Maybe they followed some of their followers, too? It was worth a shot.
An internet comic strip my wife and I had been keeping tabs on during the past year, Fowl Language (the strip at the top of this blog entry. If you haven't had the pleasure, please check it out) had just come out with it's first printed book, and we are excited to add it to our comics collection where it will nestle in between our Calvin & Hobbes and Pearls Before Swine treasuries. The missus and I are old-school, what can we say? We prefer analog to digital. Anyway, I thought, on a lark, that I would tweet Mr. Brian Gordon, and see if he wouldn't dismiss me too harshly, simply telling him congrats on his book being published. Unbelievably, he liked my post! I'm sure he had better things to do than read random posts from grubby strangers looking to bask in his reflected glory, but he took the time to read it and liked it!
Unfortunately for him, he didn't see the sign that said Do Not Feed the Ego, and consequently was unaware that his liking my post would only ensue in further attempts at high-caliber validation. My next post involved a pathetic attempt to get him to follow my page if I promised to buy his book. In response to my proposal, he made a counter offer, and after some haggling, a deal was made. He, Mr. Brian Gordon himself, on behalf of Fowl Language, is now a follower of the Biography of a Nobody Twitter feed. F-ing A! All I have to do is watch his kids three times per week - Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays - for the unforeseeable future. I just hope they're not biters.
Oh, and if anyone else out there is also hoping to get a published author in their social corner like I did, Brian says he's got openings for a gardener and a pool boy.
moments of pure joy. The joy part is actually the next day's cartoon, by the way.
Now, I've only got one little hobbit, most families have more, so they understand parenting far more than I can possibly claim to knowing. The national average is 2.5 kids. At least that's what I remember as a statistic when I was in elementary. I've researched it once, that's good enough. 2.5. So, if you can manage to get by the mental image that these average households have two whole children and one half-child (is it split right down the middle, King Solomon style?), then you could probably have a lot of fun designing their Christmas card photos.
"Oh, look at the nice card the Thompsons gave us, isn't that love-. Well, that was silly. They placed Bobby on the far side of the frame for some reason, he's only halfway in the shot...now why - Oh, that's right. Nevermind. Where's the eggnog?"
But, regardless of how many of the little stain-making, poopy-smelling little barfbags parents have, they are just that, parents. Parents, by definition, have kids, and they try to take care of them best they can. And, unless they're completely heartless monsters, parents will do just about anything for their kids. Only real jerks would leave their kids in a lurch to fend for themselves, like being abandoned at a train station with twenty bucks pinned to their shirt and a rudimentary map to Gramma's drawn on a dirty napkin. I would never do that. I'd use a clean napkin. Unless, of course, the kid has received countless parental and police warnings and is still getting into trouble for doing stupid shit. In that case, I too could easily become a heartless monster in order to teach that little punk a lesson.
We'd take bullets for our children. We support their dreams and ambitions so they can be happy in everything they do. And, like in the Calvin & Hobbes strip above, we'll go out of our way to try and find whatever childhood treasure they may have inadvertently lost just to keep those little smiles from fading.
So hap-py toge-theerrrrr.....bumba da bum badum ...I can't see me lovin' nobody but you, for all my li-i-i-i-ife!
A few days ago, we were in the big city, going in and out of countless stores, running all sorts of errands. Our little shrimp always brings his helicopter along for car rides, usually leaving it behind in the car when we go into a store. At our final stop at yet another big box store, he asked to bring his helicopter inside with him; no problem, we've done it before. We did our thing, came back into the car, and enjoyed the hour long trip back home to Nowheresville. Once there, we released the little ragamuffin from his car seat while we unloaded the car's contents into the house, and after a few minutes we were asked, Where helitawker?
My heart sank. Only then did I realize something; when I pulled our little guy from the shopping cart at the end of our last modest spending spree, I couldn't remember if he had his little blue helicopter in hand as he usually did. I never paid attention to it. I thought about it more, registering that I didn't even pay close attention to which kid I was loading into the car. I mean, it's so automatic to just transplant whichever kid is in my grocery cart at the time into the car. I never really make a distinctive effort to recognize my kid's facial features as I'm strapping him in, to be honest. It wouldn't be hard to put the effort in, a quick scan would be all that's required.
"Hmm, messy, brown hair, impish smile, blindingly white outer shell...yup, that's mah boy."
And, hey, don't judge me. Do you ever make a conscious inventory of your kids? Oh? Fine. Give yourself a gold star, then. I'm just saying, unless the kid I'm loading up is a noticeable photo negative of mine, I might not notice right away. Likely, after several minutes of speaking to me in Swahili, I might have my suspicions. But probably not before I thought to myself He learned another language while we were shopping? Gad-dam that boy is smart!
Anyway, we searched the car, the garage, the house, outside, absolutely anywhere this helicopter toy could have ended up. And here's the thing about our little boy: he always, always makes a mental note to himself regarding the whereabouts of his little blue chopper. You ask him at any time of day where his toy is and he will tell you or point you exactly where he left it sitting. Except this time. This time it was beyond his recollection and he was getting more and more upset the longer we couldn't find it. Our hearts broke at seeing how much distress he was in, having lost what was probably the second most important thing to him (his great-Oma's knitted blanket is number one, my wife would probably be number three, and I'd be surprised if I got into the top ten; hey, I know where I stand, I'm okay with it.)
While my wife tried to console our little man like only a mother can, I searched fruitlessly countless times to see if I could find it, even cleaning out the car top to bottom. We agreed neither of us had seen the helicopter since even before heading back home and could see no other explanation than it was left at the store. And, though the store would still be open late into the night (those kinds of massive retailers won't miss any opportunity to make a sale), my wife was working early the next morning and I couldn't leave her with an inconsolable infant to go drive over two hours on a fool's errand. With heartbreaking shudders and breathless gasps as he tried to sleep, my little boy lay in his bed, mourning the loss of his little blue helicopter.
The next morning, with marginal sleep, I awoke to find my kid kneeling in the kitchen, looking up at the counter, which was always the overnight perch for his helicopter toy. He turned to me, sadness in his eyes, but no tears, and simply asked, Helitawker? Yeah, good luck getting anything done at home with that hanging over your head, right? So, I grabbed the kid and the keys, threw him in the car, and headed on a pointless mission to try and find his helicopter at the only place I could think of. We got to the store, I searched under countless dusty product shelves and around corralled shopping carts, and I asked far too many employees, like a complete schmuck, if anyone had seen a small, blue helicopter. Nothing from nobody. And, for the record, I really enjoyed getting all those weird stares from everyone.
Needless to say, I came up empty. Return trip, we drove over two hours for absolutely nothing. It was a shot in the dark, but as a semi-functional adult and parent, it was my duty to do whatever I could to restore my child's happiness and maintain his innocence for as long as I could. Problem was, my kid was still crying for his helicopter. So, on the drive back, I made a few phone calls, and my boss happened to have an extra one of those things. They were sent as novelty items direct from the Robinson helicopter company last Christmas, and each of us employees received one as a small part of our holiday spoilings. My little guy adopted mine as soon as his bright little eyes settled on it for the first time. Anyway, I picked up a generous bribe for my boss, made a quick detour on the way home, and soon was able to present a nice, new, and still very blue helicopter to my child. His face lit up like it was Christmas all over again, making every effort in the pursuit of helicopter gratification worth it.
He was still waving it around in the air when I pulled up to the house and into the garage. He busied himself making helicopter noises while I pulled him out of his car seat, smiling like every child should.
Sudden inspiration struck me. It was a beautiful day outside, things were back to normal, and I thought we should go out and enjoy some quality father and son time. Want to go sledding? I asked the little guy. He jumped up, hands in the air and exclaimed a loud Yeeeeaaa! so the plan was set. I went to grab the sled from the garage and found the original helicopter, parked precariously on the sled's plastic brake lever, impossibly smug.
SON OF A B-
If there's one thing for anyone to learn about publishing anything online, especially to a crowd of devoted (okay, in my case, maybe it's more like a I'll-read-what-he-has-to-say-if-The-Walking-Dead-is-a-repeat-tonight kinda devotion) readers comprised mostly of personal friends, it's to NOT bring up sensitive topics which might alienate some of them.
Good thing I'm a slow learner or else I wouldn't have anything to talk about this week.
Real-estate, huh? What a pile of grade "Z" Farmer Bob's pig snout and anuses bah-loney. No matter how you look at it or from whichever side you're playing it, it's a silly, sometimes nauseating little game. These scenarios sound familiar to anyone? Wait, so the buyers want all the garden gnomes to be included but they want all the sod torn up by when? Friday?! And my personal favourite: You know, they inflate the list price because they expect people will barter down. They're asking $350,000? We'll offer fifty thousand and go from there.
When did real-estate deals turn into a near-choreographed scuff-kneed ballet, where negotiations are nothing but fluff and filler until the final scene unfolds and both players exit the stage feeling vaguely satisfied at how things turned out, yet somewhat cheapened from selling out their deepest desires just in the hopes of getting it done. You say you've had nothing but super positive home selling and/or buying experiences? I say you lie, and I'm telling your mother. No matter how good a deal is finalized, there's always something that remains unsettled in your gut that inevitably bubbles back up in the form of unspoken doubts. Could I have counter-offered a bit less and saved a couple thousand clams? Sure it was cheaper than other places, but it's gonna cost me a few doubloons to bring it up to code. Should I be worried it's unclear whether I'm buying a boat or a house?
And fer cryin' out loud, who decided that a home's value will typically increase year after year? Does this make any sense to anyone? I may be too simple minded to understand the subtleties of monetary appreciation, but if something, like a home, is constantly being subjected to relentless wear and tear from outside elements (there are four main ones; rain, snow, wind, and rainbow skittles) and inside elements (also four; kids, adults, pets, rainbow skittles) with little to no added upgrades, then shouldn't the value of said home plummet like my stock portfolio? Wait, I'll buy on margin! Nope, at some point in this capitalist system it was generally agreed upon that homes would (in steady economic times, of course) just magically increase in value, often surpassing the rate of inflation by, oh, lots.
And why is that, you might ask?
Well, in my ever so humble opinion, people just feel entitled to getting money for nothing, or at least some kind of bonus for our trouble and to keep us coming back. Heck, we've all been there. We expect our Happy Meals to come with all the free ketchup we'd ever want. We expect free delivery to our homes if we spend a few hundred bucks on furniture. We all dance like drunken monkeys when taxes are lowered, yet we bitch and moan when that means government programs and services are reduced and cut outright. It's programmed into our social subconcious; we feel entitled to free money.
So, some clever individuals got together, exchanged grandmothers' recipes for lemon spongecake, and ultimately decided that homes would inherently increase in value. What? Some meek, squirrely kinda guy waaaaay in the back row would then ask But how can that be? Slick, silver-tongued salesmen that they were, these magnates of monetary mindfulness would mask the questionability of the inflated prices with nonsensical yet ear-tickling musings, sayings like this:
As more people desire moving to a particular area, home values there will increase.
Bull-pucky. You know what happens when places get crowded? Just that. Traffic increases, living areas are reduced to make room for fresh idiots, curious odors become rampant. Maybe it's just my anti-socialism seeping through, but an influx of people makes me want to get out of there in a hurry.
But if people want to move to an area, your home should fetch a higher resale value to interested buyers.
Horse-pucky. For decades on end, new homes were continuously being built, negating any such supply vs demand arguments. Some annoying gits would argue that builders were unable to keep up with demand for new houses at times, so existing houses would increase in value. Okay, that's economics 101, no argument there. But, if people were selling their homes to newcomers, then where would they live? They weren't selling their homes for profit then moving into cardboard boxes, you can bet on that. That would then suggest new homes being built all the time.
But as a house ages and settles it gains character and stuff, like a, uh, fine wine.
Gopher-pucky. The roof shingles are curling up, there are new holes in the walls, and the hardwood looks like it plays host to an NBA game every week.
Yeah, but don't you want to sell your home for more money?
Okay, I agree. Gimme free money!
Cue the real-estate agents. Now, don't get me wrong, I've got nothing against real-estate professionals themselves. Heck, I've even got a couple friends who are real-estate brokers, and I'm not just saying that to be more popular like when I falsely claim I've got black friends so I can boost my street cred. BTW, not my fault regarding befriending ethnic groups; northern rural Alberta doesn't quite have the same demographic variety as the big cities down south.
It's the whole process of going through real-estate companies to buy or sell properties that leaves me feeling a little icky. At the time of this posting, my wife and I (and the little guy, he's part owner. He pays us in lint and crumbs he finds in the couches) just put our house up as an eligible bachelor on the housing market and, yes, we've hired a real-estate agent to help sell it.
Over the years we've bought and sold three other properties, all of which were done through a real-estate brokerage, which is what caused me to seriously contemplate selling our place myself this time around. Now, to my realtor friends out there (none of whom have ever lived in the same communities as us so we never worked with them so I can't attest to their methods and such), our brokerage experiences have never actually been bad per se, but they certainly never left us feeling like we got our money's worth when considering the outrageous commissions realtors are privy to earning.
So, I looked into options.
1. We could put up one of those shitty "For Sale By Owner" generic black and red plastic signs on my lawn that you can buy at your local hardware store, then patiently sit in my living room picking my nose, waiting for nobody to show up. Ever.
2. We could list on the MLS system (for those of you that don't know what MLS is, you must lead an even more sheltered life than me. Just know that it is wholly owned by the Canadian Real Estate Board) for a flat fee with promising sites like listmenow.ca to avoid traditional realtor fees. Now, living in a small town where people outnumber moose only by a ratio of 2:1, I'd be taking a chance with my property. Few people, even fewer interested buyers. When you list on one of these flat-fee discount online brokerages, you run the danger of alienating real-estate brokers who might be trying to bring you interested buyers if you aren't offering any kind of decent incentive commission, sort of like a finder's fee. Interested buyers will typically want to work with a realtor to find them suitable homes to look at. After all, realtors traditionally get their fees from sellers, so it doesn't cost a prospective buyer a single penny to have a professional working for them. Sadly, I've been reading accounts of people who have tried doing the flat-fee mls listing thing, only to have good reason to believe their local realtors were keeping prospective buyers from them since seller commission payouts weren't up to par. Some individuals even spoke of getting calls from realtors asking about commission rates given as finder fees, only to never hear from them again. There are also numerous cases where, after months of fruitless flat-fee listings with no interested buyers, people then hired local realty firms to represent their properties, resulting in numerous showings booked immediately afterwards. Fishy, fishy. Anyway, we live in a small town with a limited buyer pool; I can't afford to make enemies or we'll never sell. So, that's out.
3. We could hire a professional real-estate broker to run the show. Real estate boards make it impossible to negotiate commissions, so it's a take-it-or-leave-it kind of affair. All I can do is shake my finger in a firm but non-threatening manner as if to convey to our realtor that I want fair value for the obscene commission he'll receive should he manage to sell our home. Yeah. Feel the intimidation of my wagging finger, Mr. Realtor. Feeeel it.
4. We could set fire to all the other properties for sale in town so we'd ultimately be the only option in the area for prospective buyers. And with all those listed homeowners staring at piles of ash where their homes used to stand, we'd have ample interested buyers coming to our door with generous offers so they wouldn't have to wait two years for an insurance-funded rebuild. And, not to boast, but we have a nice place that anyone will love, so it's win-win, really.
Of course, we went with option number 3. I'm not saying I don't have any misgivings, but for our situation right now, it's clearly the best way to go. My and my wife's schedule is going to get weird in the next few months, so leaving this whole home-selling-thing to someone we can trust is vital right now. Sure, we'll be shelling out thousands of dollars in commissions, but hopefully our realtor will put some of that towards advertising costs, hosting open houses, and maybe get a gold tooth. I think he could pull it off. And though I might just be trying to rationalize it to sleep better at night, I remind myself that this realtor is the same guy we hired to show us countless properties years ago when we were prospective buyers to the community, where he was infinitely patient and very accommodating, and we didn't pay him a cent then.
Only time will tell if we feel like we're getting fair value for our real-estate experience this time. We've got a few months of breathing room at this point, so no rush for now. Still, I'm gonna go check on my supply of matches and lighter fluid, just in case.
Anybody, and I mean any-body, will tell you it is vitally important to your personal well-being to just let go of things.
I don't mean physical things. Usually, when you're hanging tight onto something tangible, there's a pretty solid chance it's for a good reason. A winning lottery ticket you just scanned at a crowded gas station in a questionable neighborhood? You hold on tight to that little piece of papery freedom, and lock your car doors. That emergency parachute you found right after the plane's wings fell off? You clutch that sucker like it owes you money, and don't let go 'till you touch ground. Don't forget to open it on the way down, either.
No, I'm talking about intangible things; invisible, flighty, non-palpable things. Things which greatly affect us personally, wearing us down on a mental or spiritual level, so much so that even the perceived weight of these things can, given enough time, cripple and bend us physically as well. These are things which adhere to our souls as we journey through life, and, many wise people will tell you, keeping these bollocky, belligerent barnacles off the hull of your psyche is paramount to your survival as a whole.
In a recent CBC broadcast of their daytime program Definitely Not The Opera (or DNTO for the regulars), there was a live forum taking place in a city theater where people would tell their tales of indiscretions, admitting in a public setting to things they have done and no one knew about before. It was all in good fun, with people having a great time letting loose secrets which they'd harbored for years. A recurring theme were stories of disobedience or youthful recklessness which people had kept from their parents, finally revealing hilarious truths to their mothers and fathers on national radio about the time their family car lost its rear axle inexplicably one day, or how they'd panhandle the town streets during school days so they could buy their first beers. The premise of this social experiment was terrific, both for the benefit of the person cleansing their conscience and the added bonus of hearing the reactions of the listeners.
But, on a more basic, personal level, how does one go about it? How can someone cleanse their inner being to the point of feeling fresh and rejuvenated without having to subject themselves to public humiliation? It's not as daunting as it sounds, really. You just have to start by thinking of something, anything that you've inadvertently kept to yourself for a long time but which, at this point in your life, no longer carries the same importance or fear of reprisal that it once did. You 'fess up, you laugh about it, then you live on.
Let's try it. Ever not admit to something bad when you were a kid? Maybe you stole a candy bar, or accidentally set the community playground on fire when you were trying to prove to your cousin that gophers were flame-retardant. The point is, only you know about it and you've lived with a muddy little secret all your life, or at least for a good part of it. So, even though you got away with it scot-free, the ghostly weight of the event has pressed on you like a bloated corpse, not quite suffocating your soul to the point of asphyxiation, but squeezing enough just to slow it down, pulling it to the floor like gravity on an overweight cat yearning to reach the counter-high jar of kitty treats. And do you remember ever finally admitting to any wrongdoings on your part, regardless of its accidental or deliberate nature? Yeah, everyone probably has at some point. If not, if you've never admitted to anything in your life, then you must resemble a dried, crusty raisin as a result of living under the crushing, merciless weight of those untold truths. For those who purged their souls, for those who wanted to wipe the slate clean and begin anew... gawd-dam! The feeling you got from freely admitting to a previously unclaimed indiscretion is one of pure elation. Gravity's got nothing on you once you cleanse your inner self of any weighty transgressions.
And all you really have to do, is talk about it.
It's not about seeking forgiveness. You might argue that religious folk will go to confession to be exonerated by God and be welcomed into heaven as a pure soul. I think that's part of it, but mostly people just want to talk to someone, in this case a priest, and have them listen. Shoot, many individuals will pay exorbitant hourly rates just for the privilege of talking to a psychiatrist. I've never been to one, but I imagine the experience to be exactly like how they depict it in the movies and TV, where some poor schmuck is laying across a lumpy couch pouring his heart out to some rich schmuck who's sitting across from him, repeating conversational cues like "So then what happened?" and "How does that make you feel?", all the while the guy holding the pencil is just imagining dollar signs coming out of the other guy's mouth like cashable butterflies. Sidebar; apparently you need some kind of "degree" before you can call yourself a psychiatrist and ask people to pay you to listen to them. They're pretty strict about it, just trust me.
Professional help does work for some people, and that's great, go with what works. But if you're like me and your disposable income is dependent on what you can find in your mother-in-law's couch cushions, you're in luck. I'm here to tell you that, yes, there is a way you can absolve yourself without taking out a high-interest loan or selling your kid to the underage labour market to pay for a shrink. Just gather up your dearest friends, parents, siblings, or third cousin, and plop them down around the dinner table. Or you can rent out a small amphitheater if your improprieties justify it. It doesn't matter, really, just so long as your audience is comprised mainly of those whom you have ever so remorsefully wronged. But be sure to include a handful of random, objective spectators in the mix as well because their reactions will be priceless.
I actually did this very thing a few years back, and boy, I'll tell ya, it felt great. I never did anything so outlandish like murder anyone or vote for the Green Party, but confessing to my little secret transgressions felt like caramel-covered angels passing between my lips on their way up to heaven. To the small congregation made up of my mum and dad, my sister and her husband, and my dear, patient wife, I confessed to countless high school scams buddies and I pulled off to acquire illegitimate course credits, school suspensions which I expertly ensured were never discovered by my parents, and an illegal cult I established in our old neighborhood when I was fifteen. I joke, of course.
I was sixteen.
Indiscretion after indiscretion, my heart felt lighter with every word, breaking away at the concrete shell which had formed around it from years of living with lies coursing through my veins. The gape-jawed expressions of my family members only spurred me on (my mother in particular as she was a school teacher and principal throughout her professional career. The irony was positively delicious). For a long time, I sallied forth, remembering wrongdoings I'd suppressed years ago, only to have them laid out across the family dinner table like a morality smorgasbord. I kept turning to my sister here and there, inviting her to lay down some of her own stories of misdemeanors in the making, but apparently she'd lived a misspent youth following the straight and narrow. So, it was all up to me. Tale after ridiculous tale, I laid it all out, purging my soul squeaky clean.
So, even though none of my transgressions were anywhere close to leading me along the path to, say, serial killing or running for election, I wasn't the perfect little poster-boy my parents thought they had. And, even though I always knew I was way cooler than my sister, now she knew it too. So embrace any little transgressions and misdeeds you may have committed once upon a time, so long as you 'fess up to doing them, eventually. They are all elements and experiences that have forged us into the beings we are today. And if you have loved ones whom you can share your indemnifiable indiscretions with and they'll still forgive you, then I think we can all agree you must have turned out okay in the end.
Now don't go secretly trying to wreck things or steal an office computer or kidnap anyone just so you'll have something to eventually confess to people. Well... unless it'll make a fantastically entertaining story, after which maybe then I'll go digging through the couch cushions to find you some bail money.