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Why I am much nicer than certain ladies (except for Mom)...

The war turtle knows all.

As best I can remember the scene from Ernest Goes to Camp:

Private Turtle
I'm scared, Sarge.

Sargeant Turtle
We're all scared, son.


It is very possible that some people don't give even a tiny, non-straining crap about this little karaoke contest we have here.

But you have to understand: It has consumed us. It has become a full-blown war of words. And penises. And ugly taunts. And offers of unwanted sexual favors.

The karaoke contest... It isn't human. It doesn't feel pain! It can't be reasoned with!

I was starting to feel pretty good. I posted my mack-alicious Ike Turner medley on, confident that people who care about me would go vote, and it would all be in fun.

Then Pamie, who posits herself as the Godfather of online journals or something (I won't comment on her resemblance to a latter-day Marlon Brando. Oh, wait, I just did.) decided to chime in and try to lay some primitive form of caveman smack on Allison and I.

Allison and I are good Texans, so we don't respond to that sort of taunting. It's unsportsmanlike. It's unladylike (not that this applies to Allison, because as I established last time, she's a man and she has a penis). And, you know, it's just not right.

Ever since Pamie moved to L.A., she's lost her naive, sweet Texas roots and has replaced them with knotted, gnarly, Californian branches of hatred and deceit. Something happens when people move out there. They start wearing black.

They sleep with people. For money.

They order fancy-schmancy coffee drinks and yell at people in small Texas towns who don't know how to make a "double frap half-caff." Pamie, in particular, has fallen victim to this L.A. curse, and now everything in her life is built into this huge drama on her site to drum attention up from studio executives. "My cat died." "My house almost caught on fire." "I might die in a plane crash." Wah, wah, wah. It gets tired.

And then she says I have a vagina. What's that about, Pamie? Jeez.

Most disturbing are the throngs of people who have come out to support this... person, if that's what you still want to call her. They don't see how she's changed. She turned our good karaoke, which was fun and innocent and lovely, and twisted into something that's making people get all ugly with each other. On forums that pay her for putting ads on every page.

If it sounds like blood money, well, you know... I guess it is. Pamie, your hands are bloody.

People have picked sides, and despite my equal rations of smack talk / sweet talk on Ms. Pamie's Renegade Forums of Hatred and Smack, I still have no idea how this contest will turn out.

All I can ask is that you sweet, lovely people vote for me because, honestly, I have the best entry. No reason beyond that. Listen to the karaokes and you will clearly see that I deserve to win.

None of this, "my karaoke will have sex with you" crap. Honestly? Pamie's karaoke has VD. She's a kara-ho-ke.

So I leave it up to you. Go vote today (and I think the rest of the week) for the karaoke winner. Remember, I poured my heart and soul to this. I gave you the Mystikal Marx Bros. Duck Soup Mix. I give and I give and all I ask is a little "Hell, yeah!" now and then.

My heart bursts with love for you. I kiss you!

Don't let these mean ladies who've been making my week miserable win. You'll hate yourself if they do. And they won't care one bit.



Okay, that was a lot of fun. But, don't lose me, here. I need to get a little bit serious.

Tomorrow's my mom's birthday. I was going to write something really cute and funny about my mom, maybe even sing her a little song ("Oh, Mama, Mia!"). I wanted to write something because I wrote about my brother's birthday on Monday and it's funny how my family's birthdays are laid out:

P.J.: March 5
Mom: March 10
Me: April 5
Dad: June 20
Mom & Dad's anniversary: Aug. 5

Isn't that weird? All multiples of Five. That just has always seemed extremely cool to me.

These are so not my parents. But I guess times like this are the Ties that bind our Family. Oh, what you weren't thinking that exact same joke?

Yesterday, though, I got an instant message from my dad first thing in the morning saying my Mom was in the hospital. She was under some stress and in the middle of the night had some chest pains. She admitted herself to the hospital and was there all day.

I got updates from my dad through the morning.

I called directly to her hospital bed during the day and she sounded very tired. They were taking all kinds of tests, saying they thought her potassium was low.

I had to work all day and then had a Latino Comedy Project writing meeting that lasted forever, so by the time I got home at about 10:30 p.m., I finally got word that my mom was home, asleep, and that the tests were inconclusive.

She has to go back next week.

My folks and I have gotten along really well since I left for college. We don't argue anymore and they support me. I don't get to go home that often, so sometimes when I go to San Antonio to visit, I'm a little shocked and taken aback that they have aged and continue to age. They don't look old. I mean, they're still in their late 40s. But when I see a little more gray hair than I remember or I think about how long they've been married, it scares me a little.

I think a lot of kids have nightmares about their parents dying. When I was growing up, I had those dreams pretty regularly. I could see them in the coffins, dressed up. I would wake up crying silently. I think next to nightmares about nuclear war, these were the predominant recurring fears made real when I slept.

And now they're older and I'm an adult and I don't like to think about it, but they're human. They will get sick. Someday, they'll die. And just writing that sentence makes tears well up. They're running down my cheeks right now.

It scares me. They've always been there. They've never been too far away.

And when I get a message like that, when I hear the words, "Your mom is in the hospital." Something in me just snaps. I didn't get emotional. I didn't freak out. I just got very quiet. I went to work. I did my job. I went on autopilot.

And nobody I worked with even noticed anything was wrong. Which is okay, because I keep those things hidden. I don't let on. I keep joking around and talking karaoke smack and it's still there.

Inside, my worst, deepest fears are realized.

I love you mom. I'm scared, but I know you're okay now. And it just seems strange and spooky that on the very day I wanted to be funny and silly for you and pay tribute to you on my little Web site for your birthday, that I'm finding I have to write these words instead.

Because I can't joke around about you when I'm scared like this. I can't be flip. It hurts too much.

I'll be home tomorrow.

I'll be plenty silly then.



Which is to say, for the rest of you, that you should totally go vote for me in the karaoke contest.

What, was that cheap? Oh, I'm sorry. You can talk smack when your mom just got out of the hospital.


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"Your harvest may be riper than mine, but I will still smack your ass down in the karaoke contest, hussy."

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