Last week, I was attending the funeral of my friend's fathe(estranged) Despite all the teeth gnashing niceties and the oratorical jujitsu displayed by everyone who got up to speak, there was a common theme to all of their remarks that overcast day - that the man laying in the pine box just a few feet away was an insufferable prick. As I uncomfortably sat in my monkey suit witnessing his children try to spin his outright abandonment into him having tunnel vision career-wise, and the first wife of the dearly departed tearfully crafting his years of heart-wrenching adultery into the fact that he'd always had the "soul of a 25 year old" - I suddenly started to wonder what would the common theme unifying the speakers at my funeral would be? Listen, I've embraced my inner asshole a long time ago, so much in fact that my loved ones have long referred to me by that special orifice my ex-girlfriend told me was only reserved for our wedding night. Joking about something so obvious at my funeral or wake isn't exactly comedic gold. But if forced to guess, I'm pretty sure that my impatience would be a common point of reference as I sport a fashionable black suit that unfortunately highlights my new pasty complexion. I'm not sure who will say what, but I can envision some random ex-girlfriend finding a tasteful way of describing my nonexistent foreplay, and my habit of whispering "Shhh, you just ruin it by speaking.." every time she mistakenly took it upon herself to inject sexy pillow talk into the equation. Maybe my friend Danny will tell the story about how I almost got pummeled Rodney King style by one of Virginia Beach's finest for simply giving him the universal "hurry up" signal while saying "Wrap it up Serpico, I have places to go!" as he attempted to lecture me on the dangers of speeding. My penchant for begrudgingly rewarding old ladies with free groceries every time I see one of them very casually pour a million and one fucking pennies in front of an underpaid cashier, and the time a bank manager angrily read me the riot act after I tried to fake a disability(walking cane and all) just so I could cash my check ahead of everyone else - all displays of my impatience that will momentarily lift the spirits of all the mourners within earshot.
But unfortunately, one unknown fact about me that the black wearing sea of mourners will fail to learn on that fateful day is that I have historically shown an infinite amount of patience in one area in particular - when dealing with people who have speech impediments and other garden variety disorders. As a kid I had a crippling stutter, so I know how it feels to see people get physically frustrated while you struggle with words, sometimes those same people attempting to finish your sentences as if they were doing you some great service. So I take it upon myself to do my best to be the epitome of patience whenever I encounter some adult who has the same oratory affliction that I had as a child. Listen, I know that this will in no way excuses my petulant displays of impatience, like last week when I violently shook my letter carrier's mail-truck because he decided to take a lunch break while my mailbox remained empty. But for the last 20 years, whenever I've encountered someone with a speech impediment or some sort of god given hindrance, I suddenly go from being an impatient malcontent to a considerate and thoughtful nurturer. Its pretty disgusting I know, but at least I have a highlight reel to show St Peter as I passionately plead my case for an admittance into heaven.
I bring all of this up because recently a real good friend of mine who has OCD(Obsessive-compulsive disorder), Mark, wanted to know why I had stuck by him all these years when so many others have abandoned him as soon as his quirks simply became too much to bear. Part of it is the patience born out of being a stutterer as a kid. I hardly raise an eyebrow now whenever Mark has to touch the ball a certain amount of times before we can even begin a pickup basketball game. I've never been irritated when it takes him a half hour to leave the house because every time he touches his doorknob something just doesn't feel quite right to him. But the main reason why our friendship has withstood the test of time is primarily because we are kindred spirits of sorts. See, I have what you call "Hip Hop OCD". Let me explain:
* For as long as I can remember, if I'm browsing through some mega-store and wander into the home stereo system section and some mindless, monosyllabic knuckle-dragging form of Hip Hop is playing - I immediately take it upon myself to change the channel immediately. Sometimes shoving the person out of the way who just turned on that vapid dreck in the process.
*One of the main reasons why people stopped inviting me to their weddings, outside of the fact that I once convinced a bride's blind cousin to get me "hand love" in the woods behind the respective reception hall - is my ongoing habit of threatening the lives of reception DJ's who insist on playing music that simply isn't up to my particular standards. I know that its not my special day and all, but if you think its alright to play records that involve the listener participating in some sort of convoluted dance - you deserve to get your fucking ass kicked.
*Despite being an asshole, and having a case of germaphobia so strong that I won't make love to a woman without riot gear being involved, one of the main reasons why I'm single is because I always find it increasingly difficult to consummate a relationship with a woman who happens to have horrific tastes in music. I just can't seem to just keep my mouth shut and receive the booty spoils, instead I either answer with "..sorry, but that T-Pain CD was a deal breaker!" when a woman calls to inquire about why I've stopped calling her. Or my disgust starts to become my mid-coital chatter: "Yeah baby, that's it right there. Damn, I'd be enjoying this so much more if you didn't carelessly quote Young Jeezy earlier!"
*It seems mean, and I always reimburse the person afterwards, but if some misguided passenger of mine decides to slip some bullshit into my car CD player, I'm throwing that shit out of my window for distance as if it was an Olympic event. You think I'm bullshitting, my father saw his "Who let the Dogs out?" CD thrown with the same aggression Ninja's exhibit while targeting an opponent with throwing stars - and my old man was dying of cancer mind you.
*I detest game playing in relationships, that being said, there is one thing I have to do in order to see whether the woman is a "keeper" or not. If she allows me to play Public Enemy's "Shut em down"(Pete Rock Remix") at least once while we make love, there might be a future for us.
*Since 1989, whenever I hear any cut from Biz Markie's "Goin' Off" album, I find myself doing "the whop" until some concerned citizen bravely decides to stop me
*I don't know about anybody else, but the radio stations in my area are corporate owned soul-crushers, especially if you are a fan of Hip Hop that doesn't aggressively take away I.Q points from you. That being said, on the same token as "even a clock is right two times a day", when I pop on my car radio and they just happen to be playing something decent while I'm parking somewhere - even if I'm in a rush, I feel compelled to sit there until the song is done.