Lessons in Thanksgiving: I may be a chef, maybe.

Dear mothers who took offense to my last letter header, anyone shoveling out of Buffalo NY, and Michael Jackson’s children:

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I spent all last winter walking home alone from the mall bus stop during snow storms and frigid winds alike to know that according to my nipples, it is officially winter.

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Don’t let the weather get you in a bind. I know you’re all looking forward to reuniting with family for the holidays, unless you still live at home. And if you do still live at home…good on ya! My mortgage payments and grocery bills weep for your ability to sock away funds for whatever harmonic and melodious things may come your way this holiday season.

My friends and family are getting an autographed photo of me wearing leggings for the holidays.

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That’s what happens when you’re on a budget.

Everyone suffers.

But the holidays aren’t all doom and gloom, and neither should your outlook on them be!

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Think of all the wonderful things you’ll get Christmas morning. Or for 8 days if you are of the Chanukah persuasion. And I’m not sure how Kwanza works (*remember to check Wikipedia later*), and if you worship that weird moon holiday that is non demographic or whatever, then congrats on breathing and avoiding all things fun!

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But in between the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping at your work desk on your handy dandy iPhones that are probably still covered under a family plan, unless you’re unbelievably well off in which case congrats on marrying a doctor early in life, there must be made time for something special.

Seasonal depression is a serious issue and I’ve come up with some solutions to combating the darkness this holiday season.

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I give you, the ‘Most Things Are Garbage’ holiday series:

Plenty of entries involving tips and tricks to fight the cold that is your heart this winter. Mainly because I need it too, and writers block is a bitch.

So to kick you off, just in time for Thanksgiving, an instructional guide to cooking a Thanksgiving Turkey!

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Go Go Gadget Gobble!

Step 1: Grab a pen and paper. You need to document everything that we are doing here. Especially if it’s your first time like me! Draw pictures, take notes, record recipes, produce a tracing of a hammerhead shark. The bottom line is, you’ll want your original recipe for years to come!

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After all, where do you think KFC would be if the Colonel hadn’t jotted down the secret recipe and blatant racism in his notepad?!

Gone. That’s where they’d be.

Step 2: Go buy a goddam turkey. This is a step I shouldn’t have to tell you. If you preheat your oven, and don’t have a turkey, and are confused as to why you can’t get this recipe correct, quit now.

I can’t save you. This blog can’t save you.

Martha Stewart can’t save you.

But, if you do this all in the correct order, head to your local Price Chopper, Hannoford, Piggly Wiggly, or Wegmans (unless you’re in Albany because we don’t deserve Wegmans or something, right Wegmans? You’re too good for Albany is that it Wegmans?) and roll your cart on back to the meat section.

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Picking out the turkey you want is a delicate art in itself. First, count the number of people you’re cooking for. The higher the number, the bigger this bird needs to be.

For every three people you are cooking for, add ten pounds. For example, serving six? Get a sixteen pounder. Because you know all your greedy fucking friends are gonna say:

‘oh! Free thanksgiving!’

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…and you’re gonna say:

‘oh! Where’s all my leftover turkey for my hot turkey sandwiches? Oh! My greedy fucking friends ate it all!’

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So do yourself a favor and get more than you need.

Make sure the final selection is perfect. Punch it a few times to verify it built up its breast muscles out in the yard while it was being raised in captivity. It should be able to take a punch. Not like those weak ass organic turkeys raised on some farmers couch where he spoon fed it all the right grains and gave it baths and shit.

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It’s no wonder organic costs so much when you consider all the unnecessary spa treatments the animal got before it ended up in your grocery store.

And finally, if you’re eating for one. Don’t buy a turkey. Get a can of chef Boyardee ravioli a or something. Save the birds for people who need them.

Or get a Cornish game hen.

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Whatever.

Step 3: Buy all the ingredients you need to stuff, baste, marinate, fry, or whatever other unhealthy verbs you feel like doing to your bird.

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I’ve compiled a list of ‘could do with’ products below:

Celery
Carrots
Onions
Apples
Chicken stock
Rosemary
Thyme
Sage
Pepper
Salt
Butter
Margarine
Butter alternative spreads
Beer
Oil
Breadcrumbs
Juice
Spam
Matzah
Ice cream
Twine
Flour
Potato
Whatever you fucking feel like.

Step 4: Pay.

And I don’t mean ‘don’t steal’…

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…I mean wait till you see how much this shit costs you…

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…you’re gonna fucking pay.

Step 5: Thaw that bird.

Your friends aren’t coming until dinner tomorrow night, but you don’t wanna try cooking that turkey frozen. You need it to be able to bend with your every creative whim.

Because today you are Emeril Lagassii. You’re a food artist.

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So bring that sucker to room temperature. And if when you wake up the next morning, you find that garbage is still frozen, run him under some hot water.

Because you don’t have time for that shit. You gotta get to prepping. After all, it’s 7:30 in the morning and you’re friends will be here in eleven hours so shits gotta get done and you haven’t even had your first cup of coffee.

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Step 5: Prep your stuffing and rub.

Do you know what you’re stuffing your bird with yet?

Actual stuffing? Vegetables?

Fruit salad?

What Should We Call Veganism: A Vegan Life in GIFs, Part 1

Whatever it is, you gotta use a knife. Unless you’re lazy as fuck in which case throw a whole onion up in that booty.

What’s a couple of full length carrots gonna hurt?

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You’re not a savage! Don’t treat the bird like it betrayed you and ratted to the Chinese mob about the deal you made with Foo to hide the guns he was trafficking. Treat it like a human.

Dice that fricken onion. Slice those carrots. Give them a sensual rub down with some canola oil action.

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As for the rub?

Throw some salt and pepper in a bowl. Then go to town adding other spices.

The more the merrier right?

Just remember to say ‘Bam’ every time you throw some in.

Paprika. Red Chili Flakes.

Ground Mustard. Chive.

McCormick Grill-Mates Sweet Asian Fusion Grill Rub.

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Go nuts.

Then take some of that rub, and mix it together with like, three cups of whatever butter or butter alternative you’re gonna use.

Look at you. Making an herbed butter, you saucy bitch.

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Step 6: Prep your pan.

You gotta pan big enough for this bird? I sure hope so. If you don’t, stop cooking, you’re a failure, and just tell your friends you prepared an ahi turkey a la salmonella for everyone when they arrive.

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If you do, congrats. Make sure it’s deep enough to hold a bed of veggies in a bath of juices and turkey sweat. This bird is gonna get hot.

Take all those vegetables you were dicing earlier and dice more, but bigger this time. Then sprinkle all those things on the bottom of the pan.

Then take your broth/stock/beer/apple juice/hot tub water and pour about an inch into the pan.

Look down at that shit.

Does it look good? Could you have done better?

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Because you’re not me. That’s why you’re learning how to cook a turkey on my blog.

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Because in some country, I’m probably a professional Chef.

Step 7: Preheat your oven.

Pay attention and watch your step kids. I’m about to drop knowledge.

You wanna cook a turkey at a slow heat.

So forget your moms lasagna recipe and ignore Nana’s patented meatloaf recipe, because this bird was meant to be cooked, not heat banged.

325.

Not 324. Not 326.

325.

If you try to change that temperature, I have already procured a team put together by myself and Neil Patrick Harris (or at least a homeless man who looks like him with a beard) who will break into your home and fuck up your turkey with a blow torch while you check on your newborns or finish up that episode of Sons of Anarchy you DVR’d this past week.

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Which was crazy right? I can’t believe Jax found out about Gemma.

Anyway.

Step 8: Prep your turkey.

This part is most difficult in my opinion. It’s a lot of handsy stuff, and frankly it will leave you feeling super uncomfortable if you do it right.

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First thing you need to do is avoid burning the wing tips. Because ew. Unless you’re one of those dicks that always asks for extra crispy with your wings. Yes that makes you a dick. And just so you know, all that means to a guy dropping your wings into a frylator is ‘forget about those wings for a while, this schmo doesn’t seem to care that his wings are going to be bones with hard crunchy fat on them by the time you’re done soaking them in grease for fifteen minutes.

Seriously. Just eat wings the way they’re supposed to be eaten.

Cooked.

Anyway, take those wing tips, and bend those bad boys up under your new found meaty friend. This will make his platform steady, and provide the illusion that he is laying on his back with his arms behind his head, ready for the beach and heat.

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Hell, throw some shades on the b. Just don’t blame me when you eat some melted plastic.

Now, apologize to your bird in advance. Your about to vandalize it’s insides like a twelve year old who just got away with purchasing his first can of spray paint.

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Now take both of the legs and pull em apart.

Yes. That’s right.

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The booty is now available.

There’s some sort of thing that blocks the booty. It’s like half meaty and half boney. I’m not really sure what it is to be honest with you because I don’t care and it’s in the way.

So rip that thingy off and just scrap it for now.

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Or mail it to Lady Gaga for her next meat dress at the Grammys.

There should be a bag of blood and guts inside your pal. Take that out. You don’t want to cook him with that in there.

You want him to feel empty inside.

Like when your ex told you that you were no longer sexually appealing.

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Or that time your parents told you that Santa doesn’t exist.

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Or that time you read on a blog that parents have to tell their kids that Santa doesn’t exist.

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Now, take all that stuff you diced and prepared earlier, and shove it up your birds bootay.

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This is like a veggie colonoscopy.

Carrots

celery, apples, raisins, watermelon

gushers, froot by the foot, sno-caps, a loaf of challah

I don’t care just shove it in. Pack it in tight.

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Congratulations. You can use this as a stuffing when your bird is done. You’re a fucking chef.

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How does that feel?

Now! You need to tie your birds legs back together so nothing leaks out while he is relaxing in his rural tanning salon.

Use twine, or something sturdy like an extension cord so it doesn’t break.

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Now find the opening to your rotund baby boys breasts. There should be a little bit of room to wiggle some fingers up under the skin layer like Buffalo Bill in Silence of the Lambs. Wiggle more and more until you can freely slide your hand around in the gap that is now between your bird and its skin.

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Do you feel good about yourself right now? Do you feel good with the lord?

You shouldn’t…

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If you did this right, you should feel like the lowlife scum that you truly are.

Now take a shovel from the garage and load it up with that gallon of herbed butter you prepared. Then shove that glob into the new layer of bird you just created with your bare hands you monster. Push it around with your hands until your bird looks normal again.

Full.  Lucious.

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Now take your spice rub and just all out slather that crap on top of your birds breasts. Just really rub it in. It’s crucial. It should look like you just dropped your turkey on the beach by the time your done.

If you need a visual, take your bird to a beach and drop it in the sand, then take it home to continue.

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Now you have properly violated the animal you legally purchased at a known establishment.

Step 9: Cook.

If you’ve made it this far, I commend you for having no soul.

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Take some tin foil and wrap it on top of your birds breasts. You don’t want it to get too tan while you’re slowly turning its skin to leather over the next six hours.

Rest your bird on its veggie towel you have created for it in the pan.

Now open the oven and slide it in.

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Step 10: Master Baste.

If you just read what I think you thought you did, your mind is in the gutter and you shouldn’t be cooking for people.

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If you just did what you think you thought you read, you need to wash your hands before you proceed. And probably seek help.

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Every half hour or so, stick that thing that looks like the ear cleaning sucker from when you were a little kid but bigger into your birds sweat which has piled up underneath him. Suck it up, and pour it back over top of him like you’re expecting it to soak back into its pores.

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Step 11: Wait six hours and realize your bird has finished cooking three hours before people are set to arrive.

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Step 12: Panic and yell at the person nearest by, dog, girlfriend, whatever. Blame it on them.

It’s really their fault anyway since all they did was whine and nag at you the whole time.

When You're Mom Keeps Nagging You To Wake Up

They’ll see. When you’re a big famous chef, they’ll be begging to be let back in from the cold.

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Step 13: Call your Dad and ask what to do.

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Don’t cry.

He already thinks your less of a man because you wrote a blog about wearing women’s leggings for a day.

Or because you quit football.

Or baseball.

Or any other sport that isn’t controlled by your hands and a gaming console.

Or because your eyebrow game is on point and you mentioned that to him.

Once.

Or because you had an allergy attack during The Fault in our Stars and you tried to tell everyone that it was probably the cats or the dust but you definitely weren’t crying but you could see how it would look like that.

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Just don’t cry.

Step 14: Don’t cry.

I’m serious.

Step 15: Cover that bitch in foil and cut the heat off. Wait till five minutes before everyone shows, turn the heat back on for ten minutes, pull out that piping hot bird and tell everyone how long you slaved, pretend you’re secure in your cooking abilities, and then make sure they drink heavily before dinner.

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Worst case scenario, they’re too drunk to notice it tastes like dry pillow stuffing and you still walk away from this experience saying:

“Fuck you Bobby Flay, I’ll throw down with you anytime!”

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Step 15: Victory Fist Pump.

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Self explanatory.

Happy Holidays Y’all!

Super full but wondering why all my friends have food poisoning,
Me.

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Look Mom, I joined Tinder: A Social Experiment.

Dear World,

First and foremost I want you all to know that I never intended for the tattoo I got to cover most of my lower back, I was specific in my description to the artist and he took some liberties with size and shape. I promise it’s not as bad as it sounds, and please don’t listen to any of the haterz that might tell you it is a ‘tramp stamp’.

That implies I’m easy and we all know how selective I am in who I let take advantage of me.

Listen, we all hit that lull in life. I don’t want any of you to feel down about yourselves when you get there. It’s a point when you have crucial decisions to make about life. Its a point where you need to weigh your post degree options for employment. It’s a point when you’re on your own and everyone tells you it’s time to truly discover who you are as a person which is horseshit, they just can’t say sucks you’re single again without sounding abrasive and mightier than thou.

You will eventually get back up on the horse you rode into the world on and you will become the best person you have ever been.

I’m guessing of course…I’m not really in control of the world. You may end up being a blob who lays in front of their HULU plus account all day that slings meth for a living to desperate ladies of the night willing to go above and beyond for that next fix.

Either way, I have read that the key to success is to make life what you want it to be. I believe it was the night janitor of my office building who once said:

“Would you like me to get rid of the garbage?”

And yes. Yes, I genuinely would like the garbage from life removed. Such a wise man to speak such prophetic questions!

But where do I start?!

By meeting new people of course! No, not out at the bars silly! We don’t do that! I’m speaking of course, of the only logical place to meet anyone these days…

…the Internet.

Now pay close attention Mom and Dad, fellow readers, I’m talking about legitimate social sites! I wont be flying cross country or anything to meet someone who has four shared interests with me according to their profile blurb, because that would just be crazy and honestly no matter how much they promise it will be action packed and exactly like that movie ‘Taken’, I am really seeking something low key.

I’m going local, and I’m being smart about it! I won’t go outside a fifteen mile radius, and that’s my final offer here for these new people, and frankly it seems like a good way to limit the plethora of individual I will undoubtedly rope in with my honest to goodness ‘about me’ details.

I signed myself up on three websites to meet people initially because my friend Foo, the Asian one who isn’t really named Foo but absolutely lives up to every single Asian stereotype…

…well he told me they were not useful, full of robots and girls that stand you up at the movies, and quite possibly the biggest waste of time in the universe…and I really thought that it would be a good morale booster based on that description.

Really though, people go about it all wrong. Humanity doesn’t understand the way the masses respond nowadays. They don’t genuinely want to know who you are, or what you’re into when your not helping your cat clean itself at night during a riveting episode of American Idol.

Foo, and world, take note. I have perfected the craft. These are my legitimate profiles:

Tinder:

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Now this site, from what I understand is basically a dating site that comes with the connotation that you want to make the sex with a mutually interested sex maker. Like getting coffee but with your genitalia if you will!

The part that is interesting/unbelievably uncomfortable about this app, aside from possibly getting plugged by a complete stranger, is that you show your mutual sex interest in the most shallow way possible. Here’s how it works:

Step 1: User picture pops up.

Step 2: Judge the absolute and utter fuck out of this probably genuine human being solely on how they look.

Are they unbelievably attractive?

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Absolutely!

Swipe them to the right! You want to bone them. Be proud.

Do they appear as though they may have been hit by a truck/be missing an appendage/actually be a psychotic axe murderer hell bent on revenge because their ex left them for someone much fitter and muscular than you and all you can do is sob about it night after night?

Swipe that shit to the left.

You’re not interested.

They can make the sex without you.

The nice part about this app is that until the other person shows interest in you as well…you’ll never see/hear from them ever again! But if you mutually swipe eachother to the right…it sets you up to start messaging them things about you. Like how ham gives you really bad gas. Or how Michael Jackson may be your illigitamate love father, but you’ll never see a dime of his money because the other four brothers are selfish.

Anyway you’re allowed to type an about me, but it is limited to a certain amount of characters, kind of like using the Twitter, so I knew if I had any chance at convincing anyone to swipe me right, I absolutely had to come across irresistible.

20140123-091026.jpgNailed it.

OkCupid:

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So this site is fun! While it can be used completely for free, the creators want to limit you to minimal interactions with your new cohorts. But for a small fee you can beef up your profile and even find out when and where and how often people are re-reading your bio to gain insight into who you really truly are, and making it easier to meet up/slip something in your drink/make you their living Barbie doll tied up in their basement. It’s like prostitution but amongst new friends if you pay, so I picked the free route. It has absolutely nothing to do with me being a cheap bastard.

First they suggest you pick a really nice user picture, not because society is shallow and stuff and ready to nix you at the drop of a hat because you look like Rita the Elephant Woman or Bobby the King of Facial Acne, but because when people read your deets they’re gonna want a face to go with all those little fun facts about you. I chose that squinty one from above again, because why alter perfection, right?

By the way Mom, how proud are you that you and Dad made the sex and that was the result?

(Oh, I wonder if I should add date of conception to my bio? TBD…)

Awesome! We’re on our way here! Readers, are you paying attention? This is were it becomes crucial!

Filling out your info:

Now we want to be honest and not at all misleading here, yet at the same time, we need to make ourselves look attractive and appealing as fuck using only our words. Here’s my about me:

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Awesome!

The new people that look at us are going to appreciate our honestly and that is what people value most nowadays.

NEXT! We have to talk about things we are good at. Take a moment and reflect on all the things you do in life.

Are you actually good at anything?

Yes?

Put that shit down. And be super specific, people fucking appreciate specificity.

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I don’t want to be boastful, but at this point we should really clear our schedules for the next couple of months because we’re going to have zero free time with all the babes and buddies rolling in now.

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Wait! Stop it!

What the hell was that Alex?! That was TOO honest.

No girl is going to read that list and think to themselves, ‘Man I sure am glad this guy was honest. He seems like straight up husband material, what with the O.C. being his favorite show…snatch him up now!’

Quick! Recover with something clever…maybe even a lie…just make yourself look good before you lose their attention.

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Phew!

That was close. Just stick with that mentality for the rest of these forms.

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Superb job!

Your favorite food is a vegetable which will draw in only people fit and unbelievably in shape like your sculpted self. Also, decent call with the mosh pit portion, nothing says masculine like bumping into sweaty teenage boys just to feel something comparable to your cold soul dying inside that shell you call a body.

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Perfection!

More honesty and a pop culture reference?! Maybe you should open a business writing people’s profiles! It’s amazing you’ve been seeking that special someone instead of already being tied down!

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GUYS!

Are you still paying attention? Do you see what I did there?

I took pity, and passive aggressiveness and mashed them together to create one ass-amount of appeal and reason for everyone to reach out to me.

And finally…make sure you alert everyone of your political standings! But do it subtly!

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That’s right brah…pro choice 4 lyfe.

Plenty of Fish (POF):

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Readers, this one is super useful. You basically just answer a bunch of questions about yourself and fill out a few quick blurbs and it starts matching your personality with people and it lets you know who you’re compatible with. It’s easy and you are going to meet the one you’ve been waiting for your entire life…your perfect life mate.

Let’s get down to business!

Start with a bio. Try to make it a little different from your other ones…but keep a common thread or two in their in case you bump into the same people from other sites! How faux pas!

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Solid choices.

You see? We left a little bit more mystery here, but allowed the reader to pursue more if they deem us socially acceptable and pretty enough to be seen with in public.

Same squinty faced picture.

Stop trying to change me world.

Now the big question. First dates. Woof.
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More specificity, interest in “Girl Power”, honesty. Safe to say we officially got this down. Let’s try not to blow it on the interests section.

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Straight up readers, if you made it this far and proofed that entire list with nothing but head nods and sure utter agreement, then there is nothing more you can learn from me. There is just one thing left to do before you try to ‘lure’ in some potential interests…

The tag line.

Everyone will see this when you view their profiles/stalk them/vote them at a five star rating because they look like they’re in shape but they have really just figured out the perfect shirt to make their man-boobs look like pecks. It’s important to get your point across in this one sentence and make sure everyone knows you are taking this whole thing really seriously. Here’s a few of my personal favorites from people this website tells me I’m a perfect match for:

20140123-145219.jpgI am absolutely in agreement with this.

No wonder we matched up girl.

20140123-145232.jpgWhy at the library? I barely read.

She’ll never buy it girl.

20140123-145242.jpgObviously. Who the fuck doesn’t?

As long as you’re talking about ‘Goodburger’ that is.

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I’m not even sure what this means.

I am genuinely concerned with getting this thing stick though.

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Yo. We haven’t even met yet.

I’m starting to think you might be super needy if you give up that easy.

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I mean…

…like a second head? On one shoulder?

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Legally? No.

Also, you really shouldn’t be doing the whole online dating thing while you drive.

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Online? On a dating site?

I found you?

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Yeah…there is no way you and I could have matched up.

Amateurs.

Don’t worry guys, after all this prodding into my personal life while setting these accounts up, I know exactly what to put to make sure people take a gander:

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So friends, Mom and Dad, and anyone else who just killed fifteen minutes reading this, I’ll make sure I keep you updated with posts about the interesting people I meet. My hopes are high, and I’m in good spirit about this…

…but Foo is probably right. It’s probably not gonna work.

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