Five Ways to Cope With Stress

If you’ve been alive since you were born, the chances are you have experienced stress at some stage in your life. Perhaps your Uncle Bobo took you to the cart races when you really wanted to see the cliff diving. Perhaps your mother dressed you up as a full tea set and dunked rusks in your upturned mouth.

Whatever the case – no one really cares. Not even the people who say they do. Everyone is too busy thinking about themselves. Take my internal monologue for example:

I wonder what cats do when no one’s watching them… Boobs are great aren’t they … Tori Spelling is so uglyhot … People always tell me to have fun but I don’t know where to get it … Why do people care so much about cars … Thongs hey wow … I wonder what’s for lunch … I should mow the lawn when I get home … Imagine if you could see people naked at will … Imagine sticking your finger down between those two clammy moons, those twin fleshy orbs, those verdant turgid coconuts as the top of her ass sticks out … I wish Leslie Nielsen raised me as his own … Imagine having a boob that grew under the bed and you could just get down there and squeeze it whenever you wanted …

See?

That’s why you need to internalise and bottle up your stress or, if you’d rather not cry in the bathrooms during lunch like someone who has eye-diarrhoea, try out Headline Payoff’s Stress Relieving Techniques. Pronounced HuPSuRT.

 

One: Like, don’t let it get to you man.

Just think about how many colours there are in the world man. Like at least 200. That’s 200 reasons to be happy. All the way from like, a Rambunctious Red through to a Minty and Refreshing Green. Orange you glad you aren’t a dog?

Two: Count your blessings

Before they’ve hatched. Just remember that two eggs in your hand are better than one sausage in the bush. And just because you’re in a glass house doesn’t mean you don’t have the stones to take the dog’s breakfast that is your life and pull up your socks before you’re in for the high jump.

Three: Change your ‘tude dude

‘Imagine a surfing cat. He’s just chillin’. He’s carving up some gnarly waves and throwin’ up the horns to the bodacious babes on the beach. He’s wearing baggy surf shorts and his eight nipples are glistening saltily.

Once he’s in to shore, he’ll get onto his skateboard and go cruising through the streets as the sun goes down.

A palm tree.’

Replay this scene in your head when you’re stressed and you’ll be chilled in no time.

Four: Get Assfirmations

Assfirmations are very similar to affirmations, except they are embossed onto plastic plates you sit on, bare-botty of course. Just sitting there for half an hour every morning with the words: I am one / With the world being imprinted on your left and right butt cheeks respectively can make you really feel… at one with the world.

There are a few other assfirmations you could consider:

I am worthy / Of a steak

I deserve the hair / Of Jon Bon Jovi

This one time / At band camp

Billy / Joel is super great, even when he gets older and a little heftier and much sweatier on stage because In The Middle Of The Night is such a great song not to mention Uptown Girl and some song about a piano or some shit.

(The previous assfirmation is only for people with one very large right butt cheek)

Five: Stop bitching

Just shut up. How many limbs do you have? Six? Congratulations – you’re a genetic freak and you should be thankful.

Oh, you have lobster claws? Guess who doesn’t need to buy can openers for the rest of their life? That’s a saving of at least R64.30 over your lifetime.

 

Yours ohming while listening to a Deepkak Chopra tape,

Pull Wart

 

How to derail a conversation in the modern era

Sometimes, we are presented with situations in our lives where we need to nod politely at people until they shut up. The modern era is full of situations like this. Situations where we are talking to old people, the homeless, people with diseases, children, convicts, middle-aged women who have found god, people with shuttlecocks taped to their cheeks and general assholes.

BUT, like the ass-end of something I have developed something new, something possibly a little avant-garde. It might be a little bit scary, it smells good but it could be a little bit too creamy for some – even though it is totally non-diary and 100% suitable for vegans – I call it: How to derail a conversation in the modern era.

You may ask yourself at this point, “Am I ready to receive something so phenonemal, something so amazing that it’s been banned in Saudi-Arabia but is totally allowed in Tasmania, something so huge that it cannot be seen with the naked eye because it is all around and inside every single one of us, yet at the same time is as small as Renee Zellweger’s eyes?”

The answer of course, is a resounding and irrevocably unequivocal, “Yes,” in a loud booming voice not unlike the metatron itself.

 

Here are some things that you can do to derail a conversation – you could be talking to anyone on the list given above, or even someone else – the simple beauty of this kit is the fact that it can be used on anyone and anything.

 

–       As someone is talking to you, quickly pop out to a paint shop and buy some pink paint. Once you are back, paint yourself pink and curl up on the floor. At this point you may need to make some prawn noises. If the person is convinced that you have turned into a prawn they will either a) go away, because prawns make terrible conversation or b) attempt cook you and eat you. It is for this reason that this technique should only be used on people who are not partial to seafood or those with pink-shellfish allergies.

–       Look down at your hands. Scream. Tell the person who is talking to you that you can’t stand near them because your hands have a sex-fire deep inside them, that can only be put out with the waters of tantra. If the person offers to help you out with the sex-fire, simply tell them that they are, “not your type”. If the person talking to you goes away in a cloud of disgust, congratulate yourself twice.

–       Drop your pants to around your ankles. Pat your inner thighs, perhaps play a little drum-beat on them. Begin to hop around the person talking to you. Try massaging your calves as you hop. Don’t worry if you fall over, just carry on making the hopping motion.

–       Hold up your hand to stop them talking. Say the following, in a Japanese accent, “Biiiig Peepop. Mastodonic Peepop. Violent Peepop. BIIIG MISTAH PEEPOP!”

–       Turn into an orc. Cut the other person’s head off. Eat their brains. Drink out of their hollowed out skull. Rejoice and dream of visiting the hallowed halls of Kraumsqegg’r

–       Pull out an antique sword from Medieval times. Pull out some cheese. Cut the cheese. Make a sandwich using some Low GI bread you had in your haversack you got from that dead hiker on the mountain. Take the sandwich and stand on it. Walk 500 metres to your left. Ask them to come to you. Walk 500 metres to your right. Ask them to come to you. Repeat this process until they go away.

–       Begin to pop and lock. Consider moonwalking. If they don’t join in, get a car to run you over. If they do join in, shoot them.

–       Give birth to a lizard. Crucify it. Eat some syrup. Drink a chair. Sit on the floor and start crying because your life is full of jelly.

–       Dig a hole using the spade your grandfather gave you for coming third in the running race. Dig it to about knee-depth and stand in it. This should enable you to kiss the other person’s nipples without too much trouble. If this does not work, dig the hole deeper and throw the other person into it. Hit them with the spade, cause them brain damage.

–       Begin to count the colours of the rainbow. Confuse the other person with an interesting dance, using only your legs. Pump your arms rhythmically in front of you and shout out the names of all the different paper sizes you know.

–       Start a band. Play a song. Get signed. Become famous. Buy a house with a high wall. Problem solved.

 

Should there be any questions, do not hesitate to ask.

PL WHT (moonwalking into a river, wearing only a watch and some flippers)

 

How to be pretentious in the modern era

Paul: Take a look at this piece over here.

Fabian: Peace? It’s like a madhouse in here.

Paul: No no, this piece of art.

Fabian: Ah I see. That bit over there? That painting?

Paul: What’s a painting? I can only refer to art as a piece.

Fabian: What if it’s made of more than one piece? Like a train-set.

Paul: That would be an interesting piece. An allegory of the industrial era, bustling and careening through the fertile landscapes of our previously pastoral existences.

Fabian: Let’s get back to the work in front of us. I think I know what we’re going on about now.

Paul: All right, hit me with your ism.

Fabian: When I look at the “piece” in front of me, I feel that the artist is referencing a guttural feeling, perhaps recalling the days when we were hunter-gatherers, the ooga-booga of frustration. I sense that the artist is feeling caged, trapped inside modernity. It really is a tour-de-force, of force.

Paul: Funny you should say that.

Fabian: Really? You’re not laughing.

Paul (adjusting his beret, eating a baguette nonchalantly): Titter. What you just analysed was a lipsticked glass of white wine and a left over cocktail weenie. That was left behind by one of the other arty-types. It’s not art.

Fabian: But is it art? Who are we to decide?

Paul: Actually, now that I think about it, now that I take my mind forest, mow it down for grazing land, put some cows on it, grow them up, kill them (humanely), sell their skin for leather, make some shoes, sell their meat to make hamburgers, start a hamburger joint, name it the burger-hole (only for good citizens [bilingual pun count : 1, use of two different types of brackets : 1]), turn it into a franchise, become a corporation, sell it out, become a hippy, move to India and really ruminate on it – I think you have a point.

Fabian: When you said “ruminate”, did you mean act like a Persian poet from the thirteenth century?

Paul: Well. Yes and no. They call me the double entendre.

Fabian: You walk into rooms twice?

Paul: The second coming is just my shadow self, slinking behind me like a chastised dog.

Fabian: Did you just say second coming?

*smack*

Paul: Heck yes I did. God that was a good high five.

Fabian: So, you were saying how you thought I had a point?

Paul: Yes, I mean, who are we as humans, as these tiny, little, infinitely small specks of dust on the shoe of the universe, nay – the very atoms that dare to hang on the dust that aspires to be on the shoe of the universe – who are we to say what is art?

Fabian (doing a little pirouette): Is this art?

Paul (about to cry): It’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.

Fabian (drinking a beer and smoking a cigarette): Is this art?

Paul: What a searing take on modern youth! My lungs fill up with sweet water and rust at the sight of your raw honesty.

Fabian: I’m like a piece of steak.

Paul: Let’s get to business, you arty canvas of a man.

Fabian: Do let’s.

 

The dialogue you just witnessed, acted out by Fabian and I, shows you just how far pretentiousness can get you. I’ll let you in on a little secret – there was no glass. There was no cocktail weenie. The weenie was inside you all the time, wriggling around and finding the soft little folds in your gutbags. We weren’t even at an art exhibition. On pure pretentiousness alone, Fabian and I went from two guys dressed as a laptop and a paving stone respectively, to two highly important sounding intelligentsia.

 

Point Number One: Use unnecessary words

Intelligentsia. No, not clever people. Not people who like art. Not cultured types. Intelligentsia. It’s not a paint brush, it is a device that paints bloody swathes of the discourse between modern man and his barely repressed sexuality.

Point Number Two: Find meaning that isn’t there

You’re staring at a piece of art. It is a painting of a knife, a fork and a plate: restaurant art. It is an allegory for the plight suffered by Africans. See that checked tablecloth in the painting? That is made up of blood-red HIV positive signs. And you thought it was a simple representation of eating utensils. Tut tut, you philistine.

Point Number Three: Be condescending, in fact, deign to condescend

Some people may look at things and like them for exactly what they are. They are sorely mistaken. Sorely mistaken. Mistaken sorely. We are not allowed to “enjoy”! Our job is to frown over glasses of white wine and shake our heads knowingly.

Point Number Four: There are certain things you just do not do

Have a family? Like walking dogs? Like rainbows? How silly of you. You are an automaton of consumerism.

Point Number Five: Your music is so mainstream

You listen to a person locked in a cupboard batting their eyelashes against non-stick pans? You are so mainstream.

You listen to three Inuit tribesmen, who throat-sing Abba songs while performing bondage acts on seals? You are so mainstream.

You listen to a person who only records major rivers? You are so mainstream.

You should listen to this new band, it’s made up entirely from recorded ambient sounds. In fact, it isn’t really music as such, besides – music is so 2008. What? You aren’t in 2009 already? Not being in 2009 is so 2007. Anyway, this band, this collective really, they don’t really play music. In fact, they don’t even talk. They aren’t really people. They are just a construct of my mind. Yeah, they get on stage and sit down. They don’t even face the crowd. They face the wall and think about what their music would sound like. Sorry, now that I just told you about them, they sold out. I don’t like them any more.

 

I would say something like goodbye now, but greeting people is such a social nicety,

 

Paul White

Things They Don’t Tell You About Being A Man

The earliest memory I have where I was aware that I was male was my mom telling me not to get it caught in the zip of my pants. This was accompanied by horror stories of some local kid who got either his poor little nutsack or his GI Joe sized poloneck caught in his zip. I don’t know if that ever happened. And having been given ye olde choppe at a young age, having a foreskin like the overstretched sleeve of a favourite cardigan was never something that really bothered me.

One of the second memories relating to being male is definitely the school nurse, checking to see if our balls had dropped or were in the process of dropping. I was just seven years old and had to strip down to my bright red underpants in the school staff room so that a middle aged lady could check to see that my balls had had enough of hanging around in my abdominal cavity and had dropped into my nutsack like an excited teenager flopping onto a couch. As it was my turn to shiver above the rough brown carpet, Sizwe, the skinny black kid who had gone before me, came out in just his towel laughing at me, his mouth a gaping hole. He knew what I was in for. And it was humiliating. The warp and weft of that carpet are forever burnt into my brain. And the old smells of coffee and stationery that accompany a teachers’ staff room.

But these two memories were of no help to me growing up. They revealed nothing of the musky secrets of manhood I was yet to discover. For example, did you know your one ball can kind of hang lower than the other one, and that’s perfectly normal? I didn’t. I thought I was dying. That being said, I spent months convinced I somehow had AIDS when I was a teenager, way before I had made my first fumbled forays into the fairer sex. It made no sense, but it didn’t stop the iron ball of dread pushing down into my stomach whenever I thought of it. The good news is – I’ve had an AIDS test since and I’m clear.

But you never know.

It’s an issue of hair. You know you’re going to get it. But you’re never really prepared for it. And when it gets too much and you decide to give the old chest a funky number one buzzcut, it’s itchier than sleeping next to Lindsay Lohan. And then as you get older, the hair just creeps. In my early twenties my hands were of an acceptable hairiness. Now I find hair hiding just around the corner from my wrists, under my little fingers. It knows I barely look there, and it hides there in wait. I imagine my hair follicles dancing all over my body as I sleep, the sneaky back hairs crawling over my shoulders to dance with hairs calling my nipples home.

And on the subject of hair – no one ever told me women’s pubes would feel like men’s. That was very disappointing for me to learn in my mid teens.

One of the hardest things to do as a man is bluff your way through talking about sport. I enjoy cricket, because it’s boring. And rugby, if The Stormers are playing – even then I battle sit through a whole game if on my own. So when people want to talk about things like soccer, it gets difficult for girlymen like me. I have found that asking questions is a sufficient way to deflect attention away from your lack of knowledge about roundy kickball though. But they have to be the right questions. Questions like the following (which are the kind of things I like to ask) are to be avoided:

–       That’s not fair! Howcome the goaly gets to wear nice colours?

–       Why do they cry so much?

–       When do they pull out the golfbats?

–       Do the spectators sing songs because they get bored?

–       Who gets to keep the ball after the game?

–       Why isn’t David Beckhams playing?

–       Why do they run away from each other if they score a goal?

And when it comes down to it, why do men have so few underwear choices? Boxers. Briefs. Boxerbriefs. Tangas if you’re feeling saucy. I’d like to see a range of manly teddies. Let’s make that happen.

 

Your yoursly,

P.S. White Esq.

The Five Types of Hangover.

If you’re someone who has a social life, the chances are you’ve over-imbibed at some stage in your life. And as varied as the world is, so are the hangovers we suffer as punishment for our late-night (and sometimes early morning if you have a problem) sins. While some people suffer hangovers that can be washed away with a simple shower, others suffer hangovers that manifest themselves as demons dancing across their skull, which nothing but a Neolithic trepanning can fix. While some need an oily breakfast to lubricate their roughened throats after a night out, some of us void our stomachs the next morning in a modern-day bloodletting offering to the porcelain gods of the netherworld. That being said, there are at least five types of hangover I have identified during my many days on this earth.

 

Type One: The Trojan Rat

You wake up after a night out. The birds are singing and you have an appetite. You want to phone your friends immediately to discuss the events of the night, and possibly make plans for a little boozy breakfast.

And then you sit up. And the room spins. And you think to yourself, ‘That’s strange – the earth usually doesn’t go that fast. Bizarro.’

And then you try standing up. And you stumble a little. But you’re fine. You can deal. You make plans with your friends and meet them for breakfast, but as soon as you sit down, it creeps up on you like Madonna’s dried out nipple, inching closer and closer to you in the dark corners of your brain. A little pink musk sweet that attaches to your cheek and burrows into your jawbone and crawls up into your temple, something that you do not want but you cannot avoid – the headache, oh – the headache. This is soon followed by the nausea and the self-loathing. And your happy little breakfast? It is shat on by the cawing, ghostly seagull of alcohol past.

 

Type Two: The Horror

Dearest readers and readettes, my name is Paul White (not by choice) and I suffer from big stinking, disgusting hangovers. They loom over me like great shaggy bears, breathing their foetid breath into my mouth as I gasp for air in the early hours of the morning. As I wake, as I forcibly tear my eyelids apart, they pounce – ne’er to let go.

With the full weight of a white-trash adult grizzly who likes to frequent the all-you-can-eat salmon buffet, they dig their claws into my back, rasping at my skin with the sandpaper pads of their feet. I feel sick. I vomit. I get a headache. And sometimes that carries on until I’ve slept again, banishing the bears back from whence they came.

If you suffer from hangovers like I do, I salute you for every beer you drink, for ‘tis a badge of courage to be sure.

 

Type Three: The Black Hole

When you’ve drunk three loaves of bread worth of beer the night before, the first thing you need the next morning is food. This usually takes the form of KFC or McDonalds and is sometimes provided to you by your drunk self, in the form of a half eaten burger, balanced ‘pon your chest throughout the entire night.

These hangovers are voracious and unstoppable; they cannot be sated with just any food. Only through the sheer nutrient density and weight of said sustenance, are you able to fill the well that has formed inside you, stretching down to the very centre of the earth, like a ladder down to hell.

 

Type Four: Chillin’ like a Villain

Coppin’ a feelin’. Playin’ guitar like Bob Dylan. These hangovers are reserved for the lucky among us. You awake feeling relaxed and ready to go – you have a shower, brush your teeth and spend the day in bed, watching TV and masturbating.

 

Type Five: The Desert

I suffer from these too. I fight off the bears and, stinking of their unwashed, matted fur I make my way to the closest trader. I lay my coin down on the rough-hewn wooden counter and shout, “Give me five of your greatest libations, good shopkeep! And pay homage to the gods of choice when you bring me back said draughts and cures! Let them be as varied as they are thirst quenching! Let their very liquidity make mud of the parched desert of my throat!”

This usually results in me questing homeward with litres and litres of liquids, often involving (but not limited to): Flavoured milk products, electrolyte replacing sports drinks, an assortment of sodas and two litres of the finest water money can buy.

But they don’t help.

 

Yours fighting the evil oni that is futsukayoi-san,

Poru Howaito.

Five Things About Growing Older in the Modern Era

So there I was, living my life, when death placed a bony hand on my shoulder and breathed his icy breath into my ear, as cold as Pluto’s heart. I asked him what the deal was, why he felt the need to interrupt my life-living, but he just handed me an ice-cream and disappeared like a ninja (he threw down a smoke bomb and then ran in the opposite direction). I wanted to follow him, but the ice cream was really quite nice and he made this funny clicking sound when he ran, like a million knuckles crashing into each other, which rather put me off.

The ice cream was rum and raisin (you didn’t think death was a vanilla man, did you?) and with each raisin that I came into contact with, I found some tips on the tip of my tongue. This is what they sound like, or rather, what they look like in the form of letters. You can always say them out loud if you like.

 

Raisin Number One: Growing old is always crap

Here’s a glob of glibness – The alternative to ageing is death. In one way, that’s true, and in another way it’s a bunch of shit. As an adjunct to this point – can’t Madonna just stay at home? All of her music videos are really nothing more than her cavorting around trying to show off how thin she manages to be at her age while shoving her vagina in your face. Oh yes, she makes music too. Sorry.

 

Raisin Number Two: Think of fun ways to represent your age

22 was a good age for me, two cricket teams worth of people. Now what am I? Three pairs of boxing gloves, a mole-snake, nine grapes, four ergonomic chairs, a pair of shoes, a bright orange cat and three used condoms? That, while interesting, is really not as organised as two soccer teams, or just the balls of one soccer team.

Rather be interesting than organised. Filing is for losers.

 

Raisin Number Three: Eat more fibre

As soon as that raisin touched my tongue, I swallowed it. For the fibre. In fact, the poor raisin barely got to finish the full stop at the end of the sentence. Rumours abound that John Wayne was carrying somewhere around twenty pounds of faecal matter in his colon at his death. To be honest, I don’t really care whether this is true or not, but either way – I’m sticking to my oats and raisins thank you very much.

Besides – no one likes people who are full of shit. This weak joke brings me to my next point, incidentally.

 

Raisin Number Four: Old people often suffer sense of humour failure as they age, don’t do that

Not only do they make weak jokes like the one I subjected you to, they also generally become boring and dour. Perhaps this is the toll of life’s weight – a lack of laughter and a look as if someone rubbed a bit of dog oopsie just under your nose. Yes, laughter is imperative. If we’re not having fun, we’re just having bum. In order to keep your sense of humour, the raisin also went on to suggest that you invest in a big red clown nose, the type that goes “honk honk” when you squeeze it, and a pair of rather large shoes. I noticed then that that particular raisin looked a little wrinkly, so I threw it on the ground. At that moment, it began to rain, re-hydrating the raisin – which became a prune. A rather sneaky move I must say, a prune masquerading as a raisin.

 

Raisin Number Five: In order to stay un-prune-like, one should refrain from expression. And sunlight

You may think that Nicole Kidman is naturally so smooth and taut, like there’s an invisible man pulling on her ponytail at all times, but in fact she manages to stay so youthful by never expressing any emotion. When her child was born, she simply nodded and thanked her lucky stars that it didn’t have to become a Scientologist. Therefore, if you want to stay looking spry, it is suggested that you never show any emotion at all. Here are some test statements. If any of them elicit an emotional response, you’re not trying hard enough.

 

–       Nelson Mandela, Jesus and Lady Di were just in a car accident, they drove into a truckload of puppies that were about to go the beach to gambol with the blind children. The blind children who had their limbs exploded in the Terror Attack on the kindergarten.

–       Your grandmother just blew up while making jam for her son who died in the Great War, saving his entire battalion by jumping on a hand grenade disguised as an organically grown orange, benefiting the farmers of the Kakado region. Poor Gran, she never got over his death.

–       Your father just admitted that he was proud of your life choices and that he felt like you were the best thing he ever participated in. Then he got shot. And you pissed on him.

 

Crying? Sniffling? You just aged twenty-three minutes. Whatever you do – don’t cry about your ageing, you’ll just make it worse.

Yours staying out of the sun, because if I get too tanned, my blemish stick won’t look right on my skin,

Paul White Esq.