Stroking the Aardvark

Moving from England to Las Vegas has come with its fair share of life adjustments (if you hadn’t already noticed from this blog!).

Amongst these was something I did not see coming.  Something that was never an issue in the UK because it was rarely hot (or warm, for that matter) and the humidity was a lot higher.

Plus it rained….a lot.

So what is this new stress in my life?

Dry skin.

Now, in the past when I have visited this fine city as a tourist, it was always hot and I spent a lot of the time slathered in cream; mooching along the strip, shopping, eating, gambling or simply laid out by the pool getting shitfaced.

All of this was fine because I was covered in enough cream to mistake me for a female porn star at the end of a shoot (pun intended).

In case it wasn’t clear I was always moisturised.

The same can be said now that I live in Las Vegas…but only when it’s hot.  I’m either covered in factor 100, sitting under a huge umbrella or neck deep in a pool.

It’s a hard life.

Without any form of sun protection, I tend to resemble a cooked lobster…in glasses.

lobster shades

I am, without question, the sun’s bitch.

However, it’s currently Winter here in sin city which means I’m covered in layers of clothing rather than cream based chemicals and the lack of humidity in Nevada has resulted in me having incredibly dry skin.  This is especially so on the most exposed parts of my body; my hands.

It was getting to the point where it was hurting.  I was worried about making a fist in case my hand crumbled like dry leaves.  This was difficult because lots of things in life make me want to make a fist.

To combat this I decided to be a bit of a girl and buy hand moisturiser (that’s ‘moisturizer’ to my American friends…just in case you guys aren’t sure what I mean).  So last week I went to Wal-Mart and headed to the skin care aisle.

Fuck me, there are a lot of moisturisers on the market.

I was stood there for at least 5 minutes trying to decide which hand cream would be the best.  I was getting some strange looks from people as I tried to decide which would be the best without spending $15.

Seriously?

$15 for a tube of moisturiser?  That stuff had better be laced with heroin.

Eventually I settled on a small unassuming tube of Vaseline intensive care because…

  1. I recognised the brand
  2. It was specifically designed for hands and
  3. It was fragrance free.  I did NOT want to smell like yo’ mama!

And that was the end of that.  My hands are now pain free and supple.

It’s not an exciting story, nor does it have a particularly witty climax.

Or so I thought….

Fast forward to yesterday at work.  A friend came over to my desk to see how I was doing and, during the conversation, I pulled out my tube of cream and started applying it to my hands.

“Sorry about this.  I know it’s a bit girly, but my hands are so dry.  I don’t usually use moisturiser”

He smiled at me.  It was a smile I didn’t recognise.

“Sure you don’t”, he said.

I was confused.

He continued to smile at me, adding an eyebrow wiggle.

raise eyebrows

There was a further pause as he realised I didn’t have a fucking clue what he was getting at.

“You…you DO know what I’m referring to, right?  You know, ‘moisturizer’?”[1]

The penny dropped.

It was my turn to smile.

“Sorry mate.” I said, “I don’t need it.  That’s the difference between us Brits and you guys”

It was his turn to look confused.

zoolander turtleneck

Peek-a-boo

This did get me thinking about my trip to Wal-Mart though.  To me, I was trying to figure out which hand cream would best moisturise my poor cracked hands.  To others I was openly looking for a lubricant; picking them up, smelling them and basically making a performance of choosing a decent dick cream.

No wonder I got strange looks.

Now that I think about it, people were scurrying away; probably before I had the opportunity to ask them which one they thought would be best for some good ol’ fashioned self abuse.

Us Brits don’t need it.

Not where we come from.

Not in our hood.

Baby Aardvark

Gotta love the little wrinkled bugger….

 

[1] Spelt the American way, because he’s American and would’ve said it that way.

Today at the gym…

There was a guy in the gym tonight who, I would say, is in his early sixties with a shaved head and built like a brick shithouse.

He’s clearly been working out for over half his life which was evident from the fact that he was as wide as he was tall, like an equilateral triangle….but sweatier.

Like most of the meatheads in there he was grunting and groaning with every push or pull of the machines he was using, and quite rightly so; he was lifting some heavy shit.

Anyway, as I was leaving I thought I’d wash my hands because, well, I’ve seen some of the people who touch the machines. Most of them are sweaty, and a lot of them are douchbags. I don’t want any of that on me when I leave, especially douchebag.

So I went to the toilets, washed my hands and as I turned around to dry them, in came the equilateral triangle.

He walked[1] to the urinals, barely wedged himself in the ‘normal human being’ sized space and fumbled with the cord of his gym trousers.

At least, that’s the assumption I’m making here. There’s no way I was going in for a closer look just to give validity to this post.

Once he’d (presumably) undone the cord he let out a grunt similar to those he’d demonstrated when lifting the heavy weights before.

Yeah right.  Don’t flatter yourself mate.

I’ve heard the stories about steroids.

image

[1] It was the awkward walk of someone with three huge pillows under each arm and a protein bar inserted rectally.

This is the wurst

Once you’ve seen a male cyclist come out of a coffee shop wearing the tightest lycra shorts that not only draw attention to his bulge, but highlight every subtle detail clearly and concisely in the cold light of day, you simply cannot unsee it again.

beef and pork stick

Sleep, snot and testicles…a normal morning’s commute.

This morning’s blissful snooze on the train was disturbed by a man stood right next to my seat.

It wasn’t because his junk was unnervingly close to my shoulder, threatening to bump into me every time the train driver applied the brakes; it was because he kept sniffing.

Very loudly.

It sounded exactly like someone sweeping the road with a very hard bristled broom, using short and ear piercingly sharp strokes.

“Shhhhnniiiiifffschhkk!!”

Every 12 seconds, for around 35 minutes.

That’s 175 times I just wanted to punch him or shoulder barge his balls.

Eventually the train driver did it for me.

(shudder)

broom up ass

 

Mis-carriage

This morning the much coveted front carriage of the train was inaccessible and the doors weren’t working.

It is much coveted because the exit at London Victoria station is at the front and saving ourselves an extra few metres at the end of the journey is just SO important.

As a small group of us collected by the door, the allocated ‘pusher of the door button’ (which is never discussed or agreed, but still the responsibility somehow falls to one person and never disputed) started prodding away only to find that nothing was happening.

The driver had to lean out of the window and tell us, as we continued to stand there watching the ‘pusher of the door button’ moronically repeat her duty over and over, that the carriage was out of order due to a broken window and we’ll have to use the carriage behind it.

That would explain all the yellow and black striped tape covering the window. I was actually looking forward to it blocking out the sun to be honest.

There was the slightly squelchy noise as all eyes rolled in unison before we grudgingly, but with a slightly awkward walk/run, made our way to carriage number two.

What was interesting*, as I took my seat, was the fact that my fellow commuters then tried to access the front carriage from the inside, moaning and tutting when the doors were inevitably locked. It was almost as if the train company KNEW they were going to attempt that.

Clever train company; they thought of everything.

Asking these creatures of habit to find a seat in a different carriage is like asking a man to stop touching his penis or a woman to change her mind.

Possible, but not without a little drama and upset.

You know when a dog takes forever to pick where they want to lay down, and then when they do eventually make a decision they circle and circle and circle until they either finally lay down or get shouted at to lay the fuck down?

It’s the same with commuters.

image

*fucking annoying

Take a seat

There’s a worldwide unwritten rule that men don’t sit down to pee. 

Ever. 

I can’t actually remember at what age I stopped sitting, but the act of standing up and draining the lizard rates up there as one of the defining moments of becoming a man; alongside losing my virginity and being in charge of my first barbeque.

Over the years I’ve discovered there are three occasions that I feel allow us to be exempt from this unwritten rule without fear of ridicule, mocking and generally being called a girl.

Here are my three exceptions to the rule:

When you’re drunk

It’s a well known fact that being drunk renders most of us virtually incapable of performing more than one task at a time.  Usually the primary focus is the simple act of standing up, and yet we can still fuck that up; often spectacularly.  So, standing AND aiming is a logistical impossibility and something us men simply daren’t attempt.  It’s easy in the street because a wall (or car, or bus shelter, or police officer) isn’t a particularly small target, whereas a toilet can be.  And if you’re 6ft tall like me, it’s like trying to hit a thimble…from space.  The only real risk with sitting down and peeing whilst drunk is comfort.  It’s likely you’ll simply pass out and wake up on the floor with your trousers around your ankles and your integrity in the bin.

When it’s dark

This one screams of common sense.  I remember years ago sharing a hotel room with a friend (twin beds I hasten to add) and in the middle of the night he got up, went to the toilet, switched on the light (waking me up), said “fuck!” when his retinas burned out of his skull, pissed on the floor anyway because he couldn’t see, then stumbled back to his bed and promptly missed.  I used to do the same to be honest.  I used to attempt to combat this by doing the ‘one eye open and one eye closed’ approach.  This was cunning as I’d switch the light on and I could see where I was aiming with one eye, and then when I switched the light off to go back to bed I would transfer to the other eye that still had night vision.  Genius.  Opening both eyes at this point is weird though.  Try it.  Then one night common sense came for what the Americans call ‘a sleepover’ and I had the ultimate epiphany; just sit down.  No harsh light, no losing valuable night vision, no blue/green blob in your line of sight that looks like an alien attacking the Enterprise when you stumble back to bed….and no having to aim.  Again, the only real risk here is the same comfort as when drunk.  Try not to fall back to sleep.

When you’re horny

The best way to describe trying to pee whilst in this state is a lot like trying to hold down loose tarpaulin in a hurricane.  Just when you think you’ve got it, you haven’t.  It’s messy, difficult, and often uncomfortable and we end up standing like a duck with our arse sticking out trying to get ‘the right angle’.  Just sit down.  SO much easier.  For those of you who haven’t considered this before; beware.  It’s likely you’ll still douse the bathroom floor through the gap between the toilet and the lid. 

Classic rookie error. 

Soon you’ll discover the ‘sit and hook’ method.  You’ll end up sitting a bit forward on the toilet, but chances are you’re on your phone anyway leaning on your knees (possibly reading this right now) so what does it matter?  I was overjoyed when Justin Timberlake’s character in ‘Friends With Benefits’ did the sit and hook.  Good man JT.

Now, these three exceptions to the rule of peeing like a man have been with me for years.  Nothing else made it onto the list; it was Drunk, Dark or Horny, no exceptions.  You could have all sorts of shit on your hands or have a broken leg and it will still be considered a bit girly if you sit.

That is, until now. 

Now there is a fourth rule.

Rule Four

You are excused from touching your penis if your hands have come in contact with chillies.

(I’ll let you take a moment for that to sink in….I fucking did!)

In my case I’d finely chopped three bags of bird eye chillies.  What followed was a sensation not unlike getting a blowjob from the Balrog, and luckily* doesn’t go away anytime soon.  Even if I’d taken my blog’s name literally I still don’t think it wouldn’t have been as bad.  Sitting down was an adventure and I’d even contemplated dipping myself into a glass of milk.

So, exception number four is chillies.  And probably Deep Heat.

 chillipenis

*sarcasm, in case you hadn’t noticed