I can't imagine most people feel this way, but I liked getting yelled at by superiors. It always made me work harder to appease them. For instance, I had a teacher for three years in high school who taught me algebra and computer science. He was notoriously known as the angriest teacher in school, and people would literally s**t themselves if they drew his ire. He would chew out a person in the middle of class for 15 consecutive minutes, barking at them about how they'll never amount to anything in life if they keep screwing up. His face would grow bright red, and I sometimes thought that his head would explode and molten lava would gush out. Believe me, it was scary.
At least at first. Given that I had him for four subjects across three years - Algebra II, then Computer Science I, II and III - he screeched at me a fair share of times. And I absolutely loved it.
Well, not initially. I first encountered him when I was a lowly sophomore, a year in which I spent stalking this cute Asian girl who sat in front of me in French class. I thought I was courting her in some fashion, but as I discovered, memorizing someone's schedule and waiting for them outside of each class is kind of creepy. This is the individual I was at 15, so I naturally shat myself when the angry teacher yelled at me. However, by 17, I grew into a more mature individual who no longer stalked girls creepily - I stalked them uncreepily - and I enjoyed getting chewed out in the middle of class. I didn't want it to happen because I knew it meant I was slacking off, but if he yelled at me, it just motivated me.
I consider him one of my best teachers ever, and he instilled the work ethic in me that I have today. Unfortunately, he won't accept my friend request on Facebook, but that's another story.
So, what's the point of all this? Well, I want someone to yell at me now. This is the fifth year of April Fools and April Truths, and I keep promising that I'll contact Jonathan Frakes to write or voice the corny questions I ask at the end of each tale in April Fools and April Truths, much like he did in the amazing 90s show called Fact or Fiction:
Good lord, this video never gets old. Please, God, please, bring this show back with Frakes. I would literally splooge myself if that happens. And if someone yells at me, I'll make much more of a concerted effort to contact him for April Fools and April Truths VI.
At any rate, if you're not familiar with my April Fools and April Truths feature in Jerks of the Week, I'll tell five crazy stories that may or may not have happened to me recently, and each of them will contain a horrible Frakes-type pun at the end. Write down or try to remember whether each story is an April Fool or April Truth, and then check the answers at the bottom when you finish reading all five.
1. New Neighbor:
We've had a new mailman in my neighborhood. Or, rather, mail person. The previous mailman was a chubby bald guy in his 50s who was always so sullen that I suspected that he had a razorblade stashed in his back pocket so that he could slit his wrists on the spot. He was that seemingly depressed. I'd always say hi to him, and he'd look down on the ground and mumble something.
I'm worried that he may have gone through with it because he has vanished the past few months. Instead, there's a Russian lady in her early 50s delivering our mail. She's much cheerier, and she actually likes our dog. However, she also screws up more often. There's been a greater frequency of letters stashed in the wrong mailboxes.. It's not a huge deal if it happens a couple of times, but this has turned into a weekly ordeal where people go to other houses to drop off mail. I seriously can't remember a week in which I've had to deliver mail to the appropriate address, or if someone had to give me a package of mine that they received.
One day, I received a professional archeology magazine. This was surprising to me for a second because I didn't know any of my neighbors were archeologists, but then I looked at the address and understood. It belonged to the neighbor on my right. A new couple with a toddler just moved in. The neighborly thing would've been to stop in and introduce myself, but I'm a recluse, so I've been avoiding them instead.
I summoned the courage to ring their doorbell. I did this right after dinner at 8:30. I didn't think it was that late, and the lights were on in their house. I pressed the button and heard the bell chime throughout their house, prompting their dog to bark. I heard a man talking, and he then yelled at the dog to shut up. A minute went by, and I rang the doorbell again. Still nothing. I then knocked. Still nothing. After a couple of minutes, I gave up and just slid the magazine through the circular door handle, and I went back inside.
The following morning, I saw the husband neighbor washing his car. I approached him to make sure he had received his mail.
Me: Hey, you got your archeology magazine, right?
Neighbor: Wait, that was you? You put the magazine in my door?
Neighbor: You ruined my magazine! It's all crumpled up, and now I can't read it! I can't read my archeology magazine!
Me: Sorry! I didn't think I was ruining your magazine. I did ring the doorbell twice and then I knocked.
Neighbor: I know! You were disrupting my quiet time! My quiet time is precious to me and my wife!
Me: Oh. Sorry. I heard you talking on...
Neighbor: YOU WERE LISTENING ON ME!? WHAT THE F***, DUDE!? YOU SOME KIND OF CREEPER!?
Me: No! I was a creeper in high school, but not anymore!
Neighbor: GET THE F*** AWAY FROM ME! NEVER APPROACH ME AGAIN!
So much for making friends with my new neighbor.
What do you think? Is this tale of the archeologist neighbor a truthful story? Or am I just digging up a bunch of lies?
2. Unicorn in the Hot Tub:
Upset about making an enemy out of my neighbor, I gathered my swimming gear and drove over to the gym. Doing a mile in the pool is always a sure-fire way to relieve stress, and surely enough, I felt much better once I was done.
The stress did not depart for very long, unfortunately.
I went into the hot tub to relax. I was expecting my nemesis, Skeletor, to be there. Instead of a horny 85-year-old woman, however, there was a super-hot brunette in her 20s wearing an American flag bikini. I had never felt so patriotic in my life.
There were other people in the hot tub as well, and they all took notice of me, apparently. As a fat man, I plopped into the hot tub. I did this inadvertently, but it still caused a massive number of waves. This drew some groans and disgusted looks. The hot brunette was disgruntled more than anyone. In fact, she was so turned off by my wave-making that she stormed out of the hot tub. All of the men in the hot tub checked her out as she did so, but before everyone knew it, she went into the locker room.
I was disappointed in myself, but closed my eyes regardless. I thought I was going to be able to relax, but apparently not.
"Hey! You can't do that!" someone snarled. I assumed they were talking to someone else, until their next sentence.
"Open your eyes, damn it!"
I did as I was commanded, and a fat dude with a bushy mustache was staring daggers at me. He looked like I had just slept with his wife, or something. Seriously, this guy seemed like he wanted to strangle me.
Bushy Mustache Man: Look at what you did!
Me: Oh. Sorry about the waves.
Bushy Mustache Man: I don't give a flying f**k about the waves! You chased her away, you son of a b***h!
Me: The girl who was in here?
Bushy Mustache Man: Yeah, do you know how rare it is to find an attractive girl in here!? She was like a unicorn! A unicorn in this hot tub, and you chased her away, damn it!
Me: I didn't mean...
Bushy Mustache Man: I go to the gym to get away from my fat wife, and I finally get a unicorn in the hot tub, and then she leaves when you come in here! You f***ing a**hole!
When I said I like to be chewed out, I didn't mean like this. If it's something that'll help me be more productive, then that's fine. But I couldn't do anything about this.
Anyway, the bushy mustache man left the hot tub after hollering at me. He muttered curse words under his breath as he entered the locker room.
So, what do you think? Is this tale about the unicorn in the hot tub an actual story? Or has a work of fiction been bubbling up here?
3. Happy Hour Man:
I spent 20 or so minutes in the hot tub. I didn't want to encounter the angry man in the locker room, and surely enough, he was gone by the time I entered.
I rinsed off, then placed my bag on the bench. There was one other guy nearby, and I didn't think anything of him until I heard him repeating the same thing over and over again.
No lie, he must have said this phrase 50 times in a row. This was perplexing to me, as this occurred at 2 o'clock on a Saturday. We weren't anywhere close to happy hour. And why was he yelling this phrase? It's one thing to just say it; it's another to screech it at the top of your lungs repeatedly!
I guess Happy Hour Man noticed that someone was listening to him. He turned around and looked at me intently, like he had something very important to say.
"You don't even know how much weight I lost, bro!!!"
Happy Hour Man: Guess how much I lost, bro!? Guess how much I lost!!!
Me: I dunno, man.
Happy Hour Man: Guess how much I lost!!! Bro, I'm asking you!!! Guess how much I lost!?
Me: Eh, I've never seen you before so it's hard for me to say. I don't know, 30 pounds?
Happy Hour Man: I lost 20 pounds bro!!! I lost 20 pounds!!!
Wow. All that raucous because he lost 20 freaking pounds? If he lost like 60, that'd be one story, but acting like a deranged lunatic because of a 20-pound loss is laughable. Then again, this guy thought Saturday afternoon was happy hour.
What are your thoughts on this? Was there a deranged lunatic ranting about weight loss in the locker room? Or should I be trimming the fat on a fictional story?
4. Swimming Walt:
It takes me a while to open birthday and Christmas presents, but I finally got to one the following day. My parents purchased me a kit from Ancestry.com because I care about my ancestry so much. Actually, that's a lie. I gave no indications that I wanted this, but they bought me the gift anyway. Hey, it beats the alarm clock I received a few years ago.
I didn't have much to do - football-less Sundays are much more boring - so I thought I'd try it out. I followed the instructions and submitted the tests.
Several weeks later, I heard back from Ancestry.com, and I discovered some staggering results. I'm mostly Russian, but I'm also 2-percent Spanish. But here's the crazy thing: I'm 0.6-percent Native American!
Excited about my new heritage, I went down to the local Native American center, where they were having an assembly. I brought my nerdy friend with me, and we went up on stage together.
"I'm a proud Native American!" I boasted. Then, I grabbed some fake war paint and smeared it on my friend's face. I then handed him a tomahawk, which he used to slice a random apple in half.
"Me hungry!" he stated.
We drew some angry looks from the audience, and I had no idea why. Did they not cut apples with tomahawks?
One of the people in the crowd asked me which tribe I was from, and I replied "Cherokee." Because, why not? There were moans and groans, and I don't know why. I clearly wasn't Seminole!
Another individual grabbed me aside and told me to visit a friend of his. I told him I couldn't because I had to go swimming, but he said I had to go. So, I went.
The man's name was Chief Henry, and he helped identify that my ancestor was a chief. He told me all about him and dubbed me Swimming Walt.
I went back to the center and re-did the presentation. I dressed up in full Native American garb, but it was OK because I was now Swimming Walt. Afterward, everyone congratulated me, and I earned an "A" for my assignment. Erm. Never mind.
Did this story about my Native American heritage really happen? Or is your chief suspicion that this story isn't true?
5. Laughing Stock:
I couldn't swim that Sunday, but I went back to the gym Wednesday. I had to squeeze in as many laps as I could prior to 6 p.m. because that's when water aerobics start.
I've written about water aerobics before. It's basically a bunch of old women moving slowly around the pool, decaying in the process. One of these women, a lady in her 60s wearing so much makeup that she could've been in the circus, spoke to me as I was getting out of the pool.
Old Woman: I got a dozen doughnuts today!
Old Woman: There were glazed doughnuts, powdered doughnuts, and chocolate doughnuts!
Me: That's cool.
Old Woman: You should've been there! You could've gotten some doughnuts!
Me: Uhh... wait, what? Been there?
Old Woman: Wish me luck!
Wish you luck? With what? Not dying during your workout? Getting all your makeup off? And what's with the "you should've been there?" Been where? If I want doughnuts, I can just buy them, crazy lady!
Anyway, I went into the hot tub. I plopped in again, but there wasn't anyone inside, so I didn't piss anyone off this time. I took advantage of the privacy and loosened the drawstrings of my new swim trunks, which were as tight as a vice. I closed my eyes, as the old ladies began their workout.
I must've dozed off for about 10-15 minutes, which I've done in the hot tub before. I awoke and was instantly confused. The water aerobics were going on as usual, but all of the old ladies were looking at me and laughing. The hot girl with the American flag bikini was in the pool as well. She was looking and laughing at me, too.
What the hell were they laughing at? Is it that weird that someone falls asleep in the hot tub? I could've just closed my eyes to relax for all they knew.
"It's out," I heard the hot girl say to her fat friend.
It's out? What's out? What could be out? And how did it concern... oh, no...
It suddenly hit me. They were laughing at me after I loosened the drawstrings of my swim trunks, and then I fell asleep. I looked down, and there it was. My wang was hanging out of my swim trunks! And everyone saw it!
I covered up, but it was too late. Everyone was laughing at me. Everyone except the doughnut lady, who licked her lips while staring at me. Completely embarrassed, I hopped out of the hot tub, grabbed my stuff and bolted into the locker room.
So, what do you think? Did this really happen? Or am I letting my fiction hang a bit much to the right?
Did you figure out which stories are April Fools and which ones are April Truths? Here's your last chance before looking at the answer key...
New Neighbor - April Fools! All the stuff about the misplaced mails are real, and I did knock on the guy's door to deliver an archeology magazine. However, we never had a heated exchange because of it. In fact, the dude is pretty cool. We've hung out once, and he's a big football fan.
Unicorn in the Hot tub - April Truth! Every detail of this story happened, including the part where the guy yelled at me because he had to look at his fat wife at home. He was right though, in that it is very rare to see an attractive woman at the pool.
Happy Hour Man - April Truth! I'm still trying to figure out why Saturday afternoon was happy hour.
Swimming Walt - April Fools! This was actually the plot of a Saved by the Bell episode. It's been in my mind because the actor who played Zach Morris - he was referred to as Running Zach in the episode - apologized for the episode being racist. I have no idea why he would possibly think that!
Laughing Stock - April Fools! Everything except for my wang hanging out of my swim trunks happened. The old lady hit on me and said "I should've been there" to get doughnuts. The women in the pool, including the hot one with the American flag bikini, were also looking at laughing at me the entire time. And I have no idea why. It wasn't because of my wang. So, was it because they knew I fell asleep? Did the hot chick recount my story about me emptying out half the water in the hot tub when I plopped in? Did I have a booger hanging out of my nose? I have no idea.
How many did you figure out correctly? And what does your score say about you?
0-1 Correct - You are so utterly clueless that you also probably believe that happy hour takes place on a Saturday afternoon.
2 Correct - You did OK, but could've been better. Maybe you should meditate during some quiet time. Just make sure you answer your doorbell, please.
3-4 Correct - You sure are a smart person. Hopefully the rest of your life is going just as well. It would suck if you had to go to the gym just to avoid looking at your fat significant other.
5 Correct - You know me way too well. If you're like my 15-year-old self and memorized everything about me, well, I can understand that. I definitely won't yell at you, but you should probably find someone who will.