Hello, Readers. Welcome to the third installment of my rip off from our favorite on-hiatus show. I’ve diligently studied all of the questions I received over the past week or so via email, Facebook, and on the site and I’ve once again narrowed them down for your reading pleasure.
For those of you who are new to my off season, please allow me to disclaim this post as—in my opinion—the least funny of the off season. I try to answer the questions I get as best as I can. I sort of leave the clever funny stuff for later in the name of answering whatever is on your minds. In short, if this sucks, please don’t blow off the rest of the off season, as I’m certain I’ll find something to write about that will tickle your funny bone—or whatever bone you need tickled.
As always, I’ve narrowed down the questions into some global categories and if your question didn’t make the cut, I’m certain the information you were seeking did. Read on. With that said, let’s get to it.
What are you really like? Is the whole SGIA thing an act?
Wow. I suppose this is a fair question considering that y’all sit down once a week and devote a portion of your day to reading my random thoughts on a reality show that, in the grand scheme of things, makes about as much difference as lying on the beach and wishing the waves would stop.
The short answer is “I don’t know.” I’ve been told that I’m fun, easy to talk to, easy on the eyes, and level headed. I think all of those things are true for most people that know me; however, I do have to confess that I have a bit of a dark side that only people who are close to me really get to experience.
No, I don’t have Womack-esque anger issues. Truth be told, I’m very slow to anger and I’ve been in relationships with volatile people who actually got madder at me because I would never lose my temper. It takes a lot to get me mad. The only person on the face of the earth who can instantly send me into an uncontrollable rage is—you guessed it—my twin brother. Of course, I’m discounting Justin Bieber. My brother knows exactly what buttons to push and how to push them. I suppose every person has someone like that in his life. I’ve had some bad stuff happen in my life that has brought me a great deal of perspective. I don’t sweat the petty things—although, I do on occasion pet the sweaty things. I saw that last line on a bumper sticker. It obviously stuck with me.
I can be moody at times. Cranky at others. I’m an introspective person so I routinely experience periods of significant self-doubt and an overwhelming realization that I’m nothing more than a failure at everything I’ve attempted in life. I’m certain the truth lies somewhere in between the “you’re so wonderful and funny” emails I get and the Dostoyevsky-ish self analysis I enter into every now and then. Still, it’s not always fun to be me.
My Some Guy in Austin persona is not an “act” in the sense that it’s a contrived character that I become once a week in order to comment on the Bachelor or various other things. People who know me and read the blog always say that it’s funnier to them because they know me. What you read is actually “me” and I’d find that impossible to fake. Of course I use hyperbole to make my points, but generally, what you read is what you’d hear if you were sitting next to me during the show or reading my thoughts.
Andy Gibb once said, “A lot of women run through my mind. They don’t dare walk.” Overall, I think I’m affable, approachable, and agreeable; however, I can be annoying, analytical, and angry. All in all, I think I’m worth the trouble. You’d have to ask the people in my life if that’s true, however.
Will you marry me?
Wow, that’s a big commitment to make on such short notice. That’s not a decision I’d jump into lightly. I’d have to really get to know you and what you’re about in order to make that decision. Marriage is a union that should be arrived at after much consideration and discussion. That decision alone with be responsible for nearly all of the joy and also the misery a person will encounter for the rest of his life.
I’ll tell you what: Please send me a copy of the most recent bank statement from your trust fund tucked inside your swimsuit calendar along with a picture and the address of the bar you own. I look forward to joining your family.
I’m from the East Coast and don’t get the small town thing. I’ve been to several cities in the South and I hate going. I’m open-minded but don’t get it. Can you tell me what you see in the South?
Wow. So many thoughts raced in my head when I received this email. Upon further clarification, the person who sent this is from Boston, Massachusetts. In order to answer this, I think it’s important to make a few clarifications for those of you not from the “South.”
I’ve traveled all over the U.S. and spent a lot of time in various sections of the country outside of the South. I had a giant commercial fraud case a few years ago and was paired with co-counsel from giant law firms in Chicago, D.C., and Philadelphia. We all became friendly considering the fact that we lived on airplanes and in hotels together for the better part of two years. Despite the fact that these guys literally never took off their suits, we did manage to get to know each other. They still made me put “Esquire” after their names.
It was always interesting to me to field “Texas” questions at the end of a long day when we were sitting in some hotel bar somewhere having a beer. In fact, it became sort of a rite of passage in every city we visited. Of course, I drank whatever substitute for my beloved Lone Star that the bartender could conjure up. They, of course, loosened their ties—not too much but just enough to give the impression of relaxation, unbuttoned their vests—just the bottom button because God knows a lawyer wouldn’t want to show his unvested midsection in public, and pretended to enjoy Heineken--the preferred beverage of all pseudo-important, non-Southern lawyers. Here’s what I learned.
Despite professing an open-mindedness and a tolerance for everyone and everything, some of the most close-minded, negative assertions I have ever heard uttered out of the human mouth have come from Ivy League educated lawyers from the East Coast. That’s not an indictment of the entire geography; rather, it’s an observation I gained over the course of hours upon hours spent in business and personal settings with some of the supposed brightest minds in my business. The bottom line is that people not from the South don’t understand the South.
Generally, I think people who are not from “The South” view people from there as misguided, semi-educated, tea drinking simpletons who are one step removed from incorrigible racism and harbor a constant desire for secession. Men sit around all day polishing firearms in hopes that the North will attack again while the women sew and watch Paula Deen on the Food Channel.
Ironically, there is sort of a reverse arrogance through which the South is viewed. Gun ownership, living off the land, chewing tobacco, going to rodeos, country music, driving a pick up truck, or professing “Southern Pride” is viewed flippantly and serves as a running joke for the more “sophisticated” palates of the North. For those who have never been there, the South is viewed as sort of a novelty; a joke. It’s viewed as a reactionary place filled with people so ignorant they believe in the Bible and vote Republican.
I suppose this is not a surprise considering the fact that every time the media interviews someone from the South, they pick some toothless meth addict from the hills to speak for the entire area. Roger Clinton didn’t help either. The Southern stereotype is a brutal one and it’s virtually impossible to overcome.
The same people who believe that the number of teeth in Mississippi is equal to the number of people there are the same people who believe that everyone in Texas wears a cowboy hat and boots and attends KKK meetings when he’s not persecuting homosexuals or eating biscuits. For the record, I do love biscuits but I’ve never persecuted a homosexual unless you count complaining to the guy who cuts my hair about my sideburns being uneven as “persecution.” For the record, I did tip him after he fixed the problem.
Of course, the movie industry doesn’t do much to help the South either. Mississippi Burning, Dead Man Walking, and A Time to Kill all feed off the racist stereotype of the white, angry Southerner and the only required reading in most public schools that I’m aware of that encompasses a Southern based book is To Kill a Mockingbird. Granted, Atticus Finch is a picture of an oak of a man, but the book still perpetuates the racist Southerner mentality. I was going to include Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn but I believe some school boards became “enlightened” this year and took care of those for us. “Thanks.”
With all of that said, Texas is not “the South.” Texas is more Southwestern in its culture, traditions, and heritage than it is Southern. Hell, Texas was its own country for years before it became part of the States. Texas is bigger than France.
I would define the “South” as North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Virginia, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Arkansas. Florida, Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri take a lesser affiliation with “the South,” although they are grouped in globally most of the time.
Anyone who has been to Texas and Alabama, for instance, will recognize the difference in the two. I think the quintessential Southern cities are Savannah, Georgia and Charleston, South Carolina. When you begin to get as far West as Texas, the geography and culture take on more of a frontier feel, rather than that of the Deep South. Texas is more Arizona than it is Arkansas.
For me, Texas is home. It is the state where I grew up, was educated, and where I make my living. I love it here in Austin and share a pride in my city and my roots that is unexplainable to people who are not from here. Austin, Texas is a beautiful, peaceful place and the city is appreciated, nurtured, protected, and loved by the people that live here.
There is an energy and an identity that comes from living here that is unique and to experience it is to fall in love with it. It is a place where any man of any age knows to give up his chair when any woman of any age is left standing. It is a place where I can walk into any establishment I frequent and have the bartender greet me by name before reaching in the cooler and serving me a beer. Austin is a place where dozens of people show up on a Saturday morning to help clean up the hiking trails for free. It is a city where everyone feels lucky to live, including me. It is as much a part of me as one of my appendages . . . yes, even that appendage.
For fear of boring those of you who expect to be reading something funny now, I’ll simply suggest you come and visit my great city. For those of you who want an idea of “the South” take a drive down past the Mason-Dixon line and stop off in the Carolinas. Or, if you’d rather read about it, buy a book written by Tom Wolfe, Winston Groom, or Margaret Mitchell. For those of you who want a lighter read, buy a John Grisham book.
I’ll end with the suggestion that you read my favorite contemporary author, Pat Conroy. All of his books—The Prince of Tides, South of Broad, The Great Santini, The Lords of Discipline, The Water is Wide—are beautifully written, often tragic stories that feature the South, specifically South Carolina, as a central character. He captures the generational flaws of the Southern personality while highlighting the simplicity and beauty of growing up a Southerner.
“My wound is geography. It is also my anchorage, my port of call.”
“I am a patriot of a singular geography on the planet; I speak of my country religiously; I am proud of its landscape. I walk through the traffic of cities cautiously, always nimble and on the alert, because my heart belongs in the marshlands.” ---Pat Conroy
What do you look for in a woman?
See the marriage proposal above. Alright, I’m just kidding. After my last rant about the South, I suppose I should get real funny real quick.
“Simple” is the word that comes to mind when I think about what attracts me to a woman. Not “simple” like Forrest Gump simple, but simple like she has an appreciation for small details and takes great pleasure in the non-complicated side of life. Being driven, confident, focused, independent, and all of that stuff that is fed to women in self-help books and grocery counter magazines is good in theory, but being all of those things often disrupts the balance between a true partner and someone I have to compete with in the relationship. Being “too” anything is a turn off for me.
I think most men appreciate a woman who will pick up a tab every now and then. It’s a nice gesture when a woman offers to pay; however, I never expect that to happen. It’s also nice when a woman appreciates having her chair pulled out for her, recognizes when I insist that she order first at the restaurant, or thanks me for opening her car door—not all the time, but once in a while. I’m not running around in tights and a poet shirt, but I take my roll as a man seriously. It’s nice to have that appreciated.
Beyond that, I look for someone who laughs at my jokes. That’s important too.
If Lone Star went out of business what would be your beverage of choice?
After I finished hyperventilating at the thought of the doors of the Lone Star Brewery being forever closed, I sat down to answer this question. Surprisingly, Lone Star is difficult to get outside of Austin, Houston, and Fort Worth. There are a couple of musicians that I follow on a regular basis who are sponsored by Lone Star and actually bring a few cases with them to certain gigs because the bars don’t carry it.
When faced with a choice other than Lone Star I can go several ways. I’ll drink Coors Light, Miller High Life, Pabst Blue Ribbon, or Guinness. I prefer a bottle over a can or a glass. I stopped drinking hard liquor years ago, but I will have the occasional whiskey chaser or whiskey and water at the appropriate venue and depending on how bad my day was. Also, I’m a big fan of Pinot Noir and Chianti and do enjoy my wine, again at the appropriate venue. I’m also regrettably addicted to Diet Coke.
In light of the revelations about Emily and Brad, has your opinion of either of them changed?
No, not really. Truth be told, I think it makes sense that Brad has a problem controlling his temper. He’s a 38 year old single guy with daddy issues. It’s not surprising that he’s internalized some of that pain. It’s probably a huge reason he’s been single so long.
I always laugh at the first few episodes of any Bachelor season when they highlight the star of the show. That person is always portrayed as a perfect specimen of his respective gender who miraculously cannot find the ying to his yang despite being so perfect. The sound bites they pick from the approaching women reinforce the illusion of perfection in that person. I suppose that’s necessary to woo the television audience into the fairytale theme, and I think we all buy into it mindlessly.
However, when the lights dim, the plane leaves the tropical location, and real life begins again, we see that the Bachelor is just like any one of us. He’s a human being with flaws and perhaps those flaws have kept him single past his twenties. I think the same is true with the women. There was a concerted effort this season to build Emily up as a perfect woman. Hell, I’m just as guilty of it as anyone over at ABC. However, we now see her as vulnerable and unsure in her relationship. I don’t think that makes her or Brad a worse person. I think it makes them real. At least neither one of them is perpetuating the false image by parlaying it into a stint on Dancing with the Stars.
Have you ever memorized something (speech, literature, poem, Scripture) just because you wanted to know it by heart?
Yes, as a matter of fact I have. This is the first thing that came to mind when I read this question.
She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impaired the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling place.
And on that cheek, and o'er that brow
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent
The smiles that win, the tints that glow
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below
A heart whose love is innocent! ---Lord Byron
I also thought of this:
“Look, I'm a shit, but I'm not that big a shit. I have to tell you something. Remember when you came home from riding on the bull that first time and the trailer was all clean and flowers around? I didn't do that. Sissy did it. She was there. She left you a note asking you to phone her. I tore it up, ‘cause I was sorta jealous. I wanted to keep my cowboy. You don't love me Bud, and I don't really love you; not like that. So you shouldn't let her get away. But I tell you what, if you ever wanna make her jealous, you know where I am.” ----Pam from Urban Cowboy
“Sissy, I’m prideful . . .and hard headed . . .but I want to apologize clear back to the first time I hit you. I love you, Sissy.” ---Bud Davis from Urban Cowboy
. . . aaaaand this:
“True love is hard to find. Sometimes you think you have true love and then you catch the early flight home from San Diego and a couple of nude people jump out of your bathroom blindfolded like a God damned magic show ready to double team your girlfriend. . .” ---Mitch Martin from Old School
I am literally an encyclopedia of quotes. I love words and have a knack for remembering them. I know song lyrics, movie lines, and literature quotes. I don’t know why but they’ve always stuck in my brain. Thanks for asking that question.
Are you more attracted to smart or funny?
This is a tougher one than I imagined. Smart is always good. It’s nice to have good conversation over a broad range of topics instead of sticking to “guess what I found at the mall today” or “who do you think Brad will pick on the Bachelor finale.” Yes, I appreciate the irony.
Funny is easy to be around and there is no better feeling than sharing a hearty, guttural laugh with a person you love. I’m tempted to cop out and say that I look for a balance between the two; however, I think I prefer smarter over funnier. I will not be with someone who is humorless but it’s almost impossible for me to enjoy myself around someone who walks through life in a haze of confusion.
Smart wins, but funny has to be there.
True or false? The way to a man's heart is through his stomach.
False. If you’re at the stomach, look a little lower.
Alright, that’s not entirely true. I, for one, love to cook and I love to be cooked for. It’s nice to have a woman in my life who knows how to cook something other than spaghetti. I love to share a meal with someone I love and I appreciate it when the food in front of me was made with me in mind. That’s nice. It’s like wearing a scarf your grandmother knitted for you. It might be made of the same stuff as the one in the store, but somehow it feels warmer.
On that same note, I find it incredibly unattractive when a woman has no idea how to cook anything. That’s not because I’m some sexist, a-hole who believes women belong in the kitchen, but because I learned how to cook, clean, do laundry, iron, etc. all by my little old self. It amazes me that any person who wakes up, dresses, and does anything would be crippled to the point of starvation if Wendy’s suddenly closed. I think we’d all agree that food is a big part of life. If you’ve gone through life as an adult without learning to prepare any of it, I tend to wonder what else you’ve missed.
How do you know when a guy is in to you?
Boy oh boy, the potential this question has for an inappropriate response is almost too much to ignore. Proving I’ve matured as time has gone by, I’ll skip the inappropriate play on the definition of “in to you” and move toward a serious answer. I’d like all of you to pause for a second and appreciate my self control.
I think women (again, generally speaking) make the biggest mistakes of their romantic lives when they attempt to answer this question amongst themselves. If this question is ever posed, a reliable straight man should always be consulted to confirm the results. Think of it like the accounting/consulting firm of Coopers and Lybrand when they are called to certify the Miss America votes. It’s an extra, but necessary step.
So, why do women mess this one up? Simple. They overanalyze everything and, frankly, give men more credit than we deserve. What? You want an example. Fine.
Example: Man and Woman go on a date and Man does not call, text, or email the next day.
Woman thinks Man thinks: He’s going to play it cool and not call me. Perhaps he doesn’t like me but he might be busy and I don’t want to bother him so I won’t call, text, or email even though I want to call, text, and email all at the same time in order to figure out if there is a reason he hasn’t called, texted, or emailed after the wonderful date we had last night. I’ll wait a few days and see if he calls.
Answer: A man who doesn’t call, text, or email the day after a “fabulous” date is NOT into you. Period. Unless he calls a week later and says that he suffered a horrible tragedy of Hiroshima-like proportions, he’s simply not into you. A man who does call, text, or email the day after a “fabulous” date is interested in seeing you again. Period.
Men are simple. It’s like when some “artist” puts a vacuum in the art gallery and dozens of pretentious people in dark-rimmed glasses attend the show in order to stare at it for hours an comment on the statement it makes. Much of what is discussed is merely an invention of the people looking at it. At the end of the day, it’s just a vacuum in a glass case. Nothing more. Nothing less. A non-call is a non-call. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Solution: Call, email, or text the guy and simply ask him if he’s interested. Any honest guy will give you an honest answer. Any guy who equivocates or doesn’t give you an honest answer is either not interested or he’s not worth your trouble. That is a distinction without a difference.
Tell us another funny story.
I have some funny stories in the barrel over the next couple of posts. Keep the ideas coming. It’s a long off season.
Well, there you have it. Granted, that’s perhaps the most uneventful DP Tells All, but I just answer what’s been asked. Stay in touch. In the meantime, if you need me, I’ll be finding my heart through my stomach. DP