Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Off Season Post 37: What Does it All Mean?

Hello, Readers.  Welcome back to the latest installment of my creative outlet.  I’ve had a few requests for posts over the past couple of weeks and, as I mentioned in my last post, I think the request for my take on pop country music is a good one.  I’ve been contemplating exactly how I’m going to present that in light of the mountain of thoughts on that subject that I have to organize.  To the Reader who requested that, thank you.  I’ll get to it but not this week.

This week I’ve been in a somewhat reflective mood.  I’ve had many things going on in my life—some positive, some negative, some of which inspire indifference—that have caused me to look inward in order to search for answers to the conundrum we call Life.  Alright, perhaps that’s a bit dramatic.  I think a better way to say it is that I’ve had a lot going on in my life lately and the combined effect of all of the tiny things I have to pay attention to have caused my mind to become more active than a spastic colon after a Mexican dinner.  In short, I need your help sorting out some things. 

In light of my vagueness, I suppose some background information would be helpful.  Like a modern day Dickens novel, mine is a Tale of Two Cities.  For you lit buffs out there, I’ll continue the comparison.  Honestly, I can’t decide if I’m more Charles Darnay or more Sydney Carton.  Top that off with the fact that I’m not a huge Dickens fan and you should feel my pain.  In short, I still need your help sorting some things out. 

You see, being a lawyer is an odd thing sometimes.  I’d love to tell you that this career is the noble pursuit of many of the things that our culture holds dear and, in fact, is built upon.  I’d love to tell you that I speak for those who cannot speak for themselves and I protect their inalienable right to have their grievances heard and decided by their equals in a court of law blinded by absolute indifference to the social status, race, religion, or politics of the litigants before it in the name of upholding the rule of law.  I’d love to but that’s difficult to reconcile with the fact that I spend a good portion of my day arguing with some guy in a short sleeve shirt and a tie in a cubicle on the fifth floor of some Midwest insurance company over five grand and a few commas in a Settlement Agreement and Release.  Half the time that guy is an inalienable as*hole who is anything but right. 

Work isn’t always such a struggle.  In fact, I often leave the office with a sense (albeit a small one) of progress.  The people that work for me seem happy with me and I try to be a considerate, sympathetic (empathetic when I can be), and reasonable boss.  On occasion, even the people that sign my paycheck seem happy with me.  Law firms (as I’m sure some of the readers can attest) are often horrible places to work and are, ironically, filled with the most egregious violators of every social more or boundary ever invented.  I’m happy to say that mine is not one of those firms, but let’s be honest, it’s called “work” for a reason.  If I could retire tomorrow, I would.  Granted, I’d still do SOMETHING, but I’d do it on my own terms. 

So why am I whining?  I’ll be the first to tell you that through no action of my own I’ve been tremendously blessed in my life.  Despite the bumps in the road and even the sinkhole to which I’ve not so subtly alluded in the past, I feel lucky.  I often wonder why that’s the case in light of the fact that I’ve taken very large steps on my own volition toward thumbing my nose at that good fortune.  I suppose that falls under the age old question “why do good things happen to bad people,” and, frankly, I don’t know the answer to that. 

I suppose we all have a sense of justice hardwired into our brains.  Try giving a child less soda than his brother or letting his little sister use his favorite toy.  From an early age we are imbued with the concept of fairness.  Granted, it’s impossible for us to articulate it at that age and I’m not certain it gets any easier to articulate it as we get older.  Some things simply ARE.  I suppose Hindus, Sikhs, or Buddhists would assign their respective definitions of “Karma” to this little puzzle.  Stated another way, fairness is a result of action.  You get what you deserve, in other words.  If you treat someone badly, then the universe will extract a payback upon you in order to balance it out.  The converse is true as well.  That concept is a little tougher to reconcile for a Christian; see Job, David, or even Jesus. 

I’ll stop there with the religious references because my struggle this week is not about God or religion.  I don’t want to start a debate or a holy war.  Rather, it’s about Self.  I had an especially horrible day at work last week and I left feeling frustrated and deflated.  I wasn’t five blocks away from my office when tremendous feelings of self-doubt with regard to my career choice, my finances, and the path I’d chosen in my life entered my head uninvited like a carjacker hiding in the bushes waiting for me to pull up to the stop light.

I went to the gym after work and had an especially cathartic run.  Indeed each drop of sweat that poured from my body was like a small piece of that self doubt leaving me forever and removing my saline soaked shirt was like shedding the very doubts I’d accumulated during the day.  I was whole again . . . well, at least until I got home and opened some bad news in the mail.  Over the rest of the week this cycle repeated itself.  I found myself taking breaks throughout the day to read your comments on this blog in order to remind myself that regardless of my perception; somehow I make a small difference in someone’s life.  This blog makes people laugh and writing it has made my life a fuller, more gratifying place to be since the first keystroke. 

So, what’s my point?  Well, I got to thinking on one of those aforementioned cathartic runs the other day.  Perhaps “wondering” is a more accurate classification of my process.  I wondered what I mean to you Readers.  I wondered if you take me with you beyond the 15 minutes you spend giggling at my nonsense on your screen.  I wondered if something I’ve written has ever made a REAL difference in any of your lives.  I wondered if I stopped writing tomorrow how that would affect you.  In a word, I wondered what Some Guy in Austin really means to you out there. 

Here’s what I’m asking this week.  Please write me at or simply post a brief comment answering one or more of these questions for me in any way you see fit.  I’m certain I’ll be back in rare form the next time I post.  For now, humor me. 

Thank you all for playing along.  Enjoy your week, kiss someone you love (consensually, of course), and take a moment to be grateful even though you might not feel like it.  I appreciate what you bring into my life.  Until next time, take care of yourselves.  In the meantime, if you need me I’ll be trying to keep my karma from running over my dogma.  DP     


  1. This may be the obvious answer, but I think the post that most affected me was the one in which you talked about your relationship/proposal with/to SLF.

    First, like any normal 20 year old girl, I love a good romance story, especially someone like you whom I feel like I know and am invested in. I've never had a real relationship (not because I'm a prude or for lack of trying on my part, I'm overweight due to health issues and guys are superficial), but reading what you wrote about her really inspired me to remember that there is a guy out there that will think I hung the moon, love me just as I am no matter what, and stick by me even when I'm a pain in the ass. It inspired me to wait for a guy that's really worth it, that I will be loved by someone someday even if I don't look the way society says you're supposed to.

    Second, in talking about the emotional and mental struggles you went through during that time, you inspired me to keep fighting even when things get hard. I have a lot of people in my life who say I teach them the same lesson, but I think we all look to find this quality in someone we look up to. You also made me accept the fact that I am the only one who can change my life if I'm unhappy with it.

    Thank you, DP, for everything you do. Sure, the countless times you've made me laugh until I cried are great, but the lessons you have taught me and the way you make all of us feel like your friends mean so much more to me than that. This silly little blog about a fake and cheesy reality show makes a bigger difference than you know. :)

  2. Well, I know look at bedding for my house with more detail since us the readers had a glimpse into your bedding situation a while back...

    I always think of you every time I am at a Baby Shower and a diaper cake is there (I have yet to make one of those)...and it brings a smile to my face.

    And last, I am overjoyed that you have found someone who you want to spend your life with in a world where forever is rare, let's hope this is the diamond in the rough for you. I actually enjoy your off-season post more than I do the Bachelor ones. Kim in NV

    FYI~Prayer changes things...sometimes it change them and most of the time it changes you!

  3. One more thing...I agree with Mallory, you make us all think we are your friends because you give us a glimpse into your reality...Thanks! Kim again

  4. I appreciate that even when you are writing about being serious or having a bad day, you still manage to make me laugh.
    If you need me to go West Virginia backwoods hoodrat on someone's a--, please let me know and my white shorts and I will be on our way.

  5. You're all very nice. Thank you for taking the time to write. laurap, thanks. It's nice to know I have a potentially violent friend if I need one. DP

  6. Have just sent you an email but in short - yes, you've definitely had an impact in my life. Beyond just a fun blog I enjoy spending a few minutes giggling at each week. :-) I'm sure I'm not the only one but... :-)

  7. As much as I enjoy your blog and believe that there is much more to it than just funny jokes and laughter I will not be able to comment any further this week. I will not give you the satisfaction of knowing how or if your blog has affected me in a positive way. I know that you would only hold it over my head and use and my kind words in a weak attempt to humiliate me. In short, I don't trust you.


  8. MH, that's alright. Your silence speaks volumes. DP

  9. DP, If you stopped blogging tomorrow, I'd be upset. Of course I would miss your way with words and your witty but warped sense of humor, but most of all I would miss you.

    You've succeeded in making me feel very connected to you and your readers/commenters. Despite any differences in gender, politics, geography, sexual preference, etc., there's a real sense of community here.

    I smile when MH pokes fun at you and wonder if Derek is OK when he fails to post/flirt with you for weeks on end. Perhaps that says something about me (I need a life?). But I think it is actually a true testament to you. You don't just blog, you engage, which is why I and many others feel genuine affection and friendship for you.

  10. Great blog. May inspire me to do a blog someday when I can figure out the how to tech details. I like it when men share their thoughts eloquently as you do, because that is rare. However, sounds like you are coming to the end of the line with this blog. You may need to spend the time with your honey SLF, so I give you my permission to quit and I'll miss you and talk with you when we meet on the other side. (Heaven for you non-believers)
    Susan in California

  11. Susan, thanks for the kind words but I'm not quitting just yet.

  12. Every week, whether I post or not- you give me something to look forward to. I love the break you provide in my chaotic, disheveled, and at times, mundane life. I feel a connection with you and the other readers. I love seeing the familiar "faces". I feel like if we actually KNEW each other, we would be buddies- the kind that text once a week or so to say hey, and get together once a month at the local hole-in-the-wall bar for cheap beer and great music. I find your brutal honesty and vulnerability endearing. You could easily be one of those cocky guys we laugh at on the Bachelor. You have a great job, a comforable lifestyle, a beautiful woman, and good looks. However, your sarcasm and witty bite make me belly laugh, and you're incredibly humble. I sometimes wonder if I could explain to someone else why I visit your blog a couple times a week for the last several... months? Couple of years? (I honestly don't know how long I've been following you, but it's been awhile) but I feel like they wouldn't understand. Just know that you bring joy into the lives of many others!

  13. DP2- I TOTALLY miss Derek when he doesn't comment (and you, and MH, and many others)

  14. As a stay at home mom of a four year old boy that is the poster child for ADHD medication and a 7 week old daughter, I so look forward to your posts! We have the same warped sense of humor(hope your not offended) so reading your blog let's me escape from reality for a few minutes and a loud, please don't let that wake up my kids kind of laugh. Which means sometimes I go back and read your old posts since you don't blog everyday. BECAUSE I NEED TO LAUGH to keep from curling into the fetal position and locking myself in the closet some days....seriously I know why some animals eat their young ;) I love that you respond to those that comment on your blog unlike some of these bloggers who only comment when it's something negative written about them. I appreciate the fact that you can write what you feel on this blog which something my husband would never do...who are we kidding he doesn't even talk about what he is feeling hence the reason he is in the den watching American Hoggers(there are no words..who comes up with these shows)and I'm in here telling some guy I've never met how much I appreciate him! BAHAHAHA!!!! No in all seriousness keep blogging or there won't be enough Effexor in the world to keep me sane :)

  15. Stacey C, Very well put, especially how others might not understand this virtual connection we all share!

    DP, It is an accomplishment to create and engender this feeling, as you have, especially in a society where so much emphasis is placed on our differences and dividing people - most often stoked by politicians and the media.

    SGIA: Community Organizer Extraordinaire? (You know where the last famous one ended up!)

  16. Oh, DP--you have no idea how much I look forward to your blog--checking it every Tuesday, multiple times. You're smart, wity, sometimes a bit rauncy, and insightful. I actually cut and past some of your favorite comments/quips and keep them in my "funny file". I love getting a male perspective especially with the Bachelor/Bachelorette recaps--you make me laugh and sometimes think. I think Mike Fliess should add you to his payroll--I would have stopped watching long ago, if not for your blogs. xoxo

  17. How do I love your blog, let me count the ways:
    1. You make me laugh
    2. You make me smile
    3. You make me chuckle
    4. You make me giggle
    5. You make my day brighter
    6. You make me think
    7. I would really, really miss you.

    Please know how important this bit of fun and nonsense and even sometimes seriousness is to your fans. Thank you for being part of my week!
    b from NY

  18. I appreciate all of you in the comment section and in via email. Who knew this little blog carried so much weight. Thank you all for your honesty and your responses. I'm touched. Of course, we all know how I love to be touched. DP

  19. Thinking back to several years ago, who knew blogs would exist someday that would bring like minded people together. Your blog does that across the country and some other countries and it's a joy to sit down and read your humor, sarcasm and occasional dirty bits (see your last sentence above) on craptastic days when a good laugh is what I need. I also am one who came into the Bachelor/Bachelorette franchise sort of late -Ali's season I think-but I found your blog before that and even though I didn't know the players, you had a way of painting a mental picture that captures this weird reality dating world. I go back and read old posts, too, when I am in need of a good laugh so thank you DP for bringing wit and charm into another wise wacky reality venue.

    Sal in Utah

  20. my last sentence didn't come out right -sorry - meant an otherwise wacky reality venue - think i need more coffee!

    Sal in Utah

  21. I happily add my comment and feel like I am in good company. You know your blog is the only one I read and comment on. We do have a little community here. Not sure what that says about us when this show-that is mind-numbing drivel-is the connection, but I'll gladly take it. Again and again.

  22. Grammatical fau paux's are welcome in the comment section. I type mine with one thumb on an iphone half the time, Sal.

    I'm overwhelmed and humbled at the responses I've received, particularly via email. Thank you all for the boost. Your comments and emails are like one giant collective spritz from a bidet. I love it. DP

  23. I agree with what everyone here has written. I love that when I read your posts I almost always have at least one laugh-out-loud moment. I have quoted you many times and I have used some of your inspirational stories to inspire me to work harder at achieving my goals. We have a central board at work where people can share thoughts, and I have shared some of your quotes a number of times. Most recently I shared: "Patience is a virtue, Whiskey is an option" and I had to tell everyone I know the joke..."if God's hand imprint made the state of Michigan, what part of God made the state of Florida" - I still laugh when I tell that joke. I do feel as if I know you, although I am just one of your minions. I'm just happy to have you as a part of my life.

  24. I agree with what most everyone here is saying. You, not just your blog, mean a lot to all of us. We miss you when you're too busy with life to post. There are so many ways that you have helped me that I can not post them here. I will send you an email later to let you know. I also agree that we would miss several of the regulars like MH and Derek. Most of us would like to know them almost as much as we would love to know you.

    Denise in Alabama

  25. As a regular reader (but infrequent commenter), I want to "second" what others have said. Through reading your blog, I feel like I know you, though of course I don't. It’s rare that a guy is willing to share so many of his thoughts and feelings like you have and I so appreciate that, and find it quite refreshing. I almost like your off-season posts more than the ones about the silly shows, and on more than one occasion I have just waited for your blog rather than watch. Thank you for your honesty, humor, insight - and for being YOU! You have brightened my day many times. My best to you and the SLF, I'm so happy you found each other! Take care, and have a great week!

  26. Again, I'm overwhelmed at the responses. As many of you could probably guess, that's not easy to do. DP

  27. Dear Some Guy,
    Not generally a big blog reader. But since I started reading your Bach blogs, that all changed. Well, you AND Lincee, that is. I started reading your off season posts & feel like I know you. Every time I see a Lone Star beer I laugh, picturing you watching. That's it, you make me LOL every single time I read your Bach blogs-at work ! Reading your blog is carthartic to me and I thank you for that. I'm literally...
    Some Gal Just Outside Austin

  28. Dear Some Guy,
    As a former high school English teacher, I can not tell you how much I enjoy your style of writing and your references to literature. I would like to think that some English teacher somewhere played a small part in how you not just use, but manipulate the English language in your writing. I appreciate you and what you have to say!

  29. Some Gal, the next time you make it just inside Austin, give me a heads up and I'll buy you a Lone Star.

    Dr. J., I believe I mentioned the fact that I had several English (we called it Language Arts) teachers beginning in Jr. High School (we called it Middle School) encourage me to "do something" with my writing. That played a BIG part in my life and it still does. Thanks for being a teacher. That's a thankless job but it's definitely God's work. Thanks for the comment.


    P.S. (I loved you when you played for the Sixers).

  30. I discovered your blog during Ali's season but I didn't know you wrote during the off-season until later on. After I discovered your other posts, I started at the beginning and read every one of them. I couldn't put my iPad down for days while I read them all. You were funny, witty, a little too raunchy for my taste in some spots, and so honest. I felt like I had a new best friend. And I'm a middle-aged woman old enough to be your mother. So what would it mean if you quit writing your blog? I wouldn't have to stalk your blog site until a new post shows up, but I would really miss your stories. You have made me laugh and cry in the same post, you have made me feel like I should be a better person, you have made me worry about you and your personal life (I thought you might be drinking too much), and you have made me feel happy when I read your post about SLF. This is the first time I've posted, but I've enjoyed every minute of your blogs and the readers' responses and I'm grateful to you for writing. The bottom line is that your blogs are meaningful to a lot of us and I hope you can continue them. Or better yet, write a book! Debbie in Arkansas.

  31. DP: As others above, I've sent you a separate email but wanted to say here, publicly, how much I enjoy this blog, and the little community that has formed here between you and rest of us readers and commenters. You rock, and you're awesome. I agree with those who've said that your off-season posts are even better than the Bachelor/ette posts. There's just something about you that's familiar, that draws us in, that makes us feel like we're friends with you, and that charms us, or me anyway. Thanks for that, for taking the time to not only entertain all of us, but also making us feel like a family of sorts!

    Pat in Northern CA

  32. I can only reiterate my pleasant surprise at the emails and comments I've received so far. I had no idea how much my little blog affects some of you out there. Thank you again for reading and a sincere thank you for letting me know that this blog reaches many of you beyond the facade of a reality tv blog. DP

  33. I remember when I first discovered you were a funny funny man...something about Vienna's ruffled bathing suit...I just laughed so hard! I had been reading Lincee's blog and she had you post a guest post for her because she was busy that week. Then I was hooked.

    You have a unique way of phrasing things that is just so damn funny. You definitely have a gift. And god knows we can all use some humor in our lives. It's been such a long road lately with our economy and really just a depressing, devisive time in our nation's history.

    That's why I watch the Bachelor/ette show. It's mind candy...actually it's mind hot fudge sundae with sprinkles and so much whipped cream that you feel sick after eating it...and you make it worth watching, you and Lincee, for the sheer hilarity of what you guys come up with!

    I really did miss those posts you skipped! I understand why you did and don't begrudge you for one second the right to be busy and have too much on your plate. But if you want to know what you mean to these random people "out there" on the internet, well you mean that there will be at least one thing (or many) to smile about on a stressful day. To have a laugh and think more funnily (a word? I doubt it) when I do watch the episodes.

    To wax philosophical, the internet has changed us. We don't have to feel isolated anymore. There is a whole world of people available. All you have to do is put yourself out there and you have instant community. Because no matter the subject, there are others who dig the same thing or think the same way. Or in your case, think you are damn funny.

  34. Simply put, you have no idea how hard you make me laugh. I am talking, snorting, cocktails coming out of your nose, laughter.
    That my friend is a true gift. This world of ours is often a very sad and angry place and the Bach/Ette are your canvas to paint tears of laughter.

    As Billy Joel said,
    I'd rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints.

  35. That's it! I got the term I've been searching for to describe you! Pat's Pithy Page called the Bachelor/ette "mind candy." I hate to be a copy cat but that is definitely what I think you are. Mind candy. A total treat!! Can't say anything that hasn't already been said but just have to add that you make me laugh make me roll my eyes...and you make me do a good amount of introspection. Oh, and I always learn new words from you :)

    Like others, I definitely take you with me when I leave your blog site. I love to quote you and I often think of you at various times in my every day a couple of months ago while I was at Restoration Hardware, or when I see the cute men's pants at Lululemon! Oh, and when I see a diaper cake or when I see a Men's Health magazine. "Get Better (insert body part) in Just (insert small number) Days" - still cracks me up!!

    I agree that you definitely engage us to the extent that we feel like friends. As a matter of fact, I feel like I know more about you than my own friends in real life. I love hearing your guy perspective on everything and love your witty humor, your sarcasm, and even your hilarious perv moments! Thanks for all the laughs and for all of the wonderful stories! Take care :)


  36. Although I really love your recaps, I'd have to say that I enjoy your off-season and reflective posts the most. I think it's partly your writing style, partly your humor, but most of all it's because YOU come through.

    The anonymity of the internet makes it easy to sometimes forget that there is a real person behind what's on the screen, but so much of your personality comes through in your posts and you have a way of drawing people in and being able to relate to them. When you write, it is like having a conversation with someone. I feel like I know you even though we've never met.

    All that and I guess I still didn't answer the question. So I will say that your posts offer people advice, humanity, reflection, inspiration, appreciation, a sense of community and of course you always bring the funny. Hopefully it's a symbiotic relationship that brings you back all of the above as well :)

    -s in chicago

  37. I went to a baby shower the other day and there was a diaper cake. I could not stop laughing the entire time I was at the shower. It was my own private inside joke thinking of one of your off season posts.
    In my world full of stress (two teens, and an ill mom that i care for) You bring so much laughther and cheer to my day.
    When I look at my son, his friends and there summer adventures I wonder if they are making the kind of memories you have with your friends. I can only hope.
    And like I tell my son....Follow you dreams.