The My Little Brony Show at the Ryman

Yeah, so the guys in front of us at the Tenacious D concert Saturday night were out of control. I’ve joked around called people “Broseph” and “my little brony” before, but this was serious. This was every bro stereotype come to life right in front of my eyes.

And it was horrifying. I was baffled, annoyed and embarrassed (for them) all at the same time.

These four dudes, most likely in their late 20s, all wearing basically the same preppy shorts/shirt combo with the same just-floppy-enough haircut, were losing their goddamn minds the entire show. I was glad this wasn’t the usual Nashville-at-The-Ryman crowd, all snooty and refusing to stand and dance a bit, but these guys were just too much. At one point I had to stop myself from leaning forward and asking if they were actually from here. Like, were they Amish? Had they never seen a concert before? Did they think Tenacious D were actually Nickelback and they had made it to Bro Heaven?

They flailed their arms the entire time. They linked arms and rocked each other back and forth, high-fived and bro-hugged, and held their tiny rum and cokes out over the heads of the people in front of them, toasting every other word that was sung. One guy shot video of several songs on his iPhone, except he leaned his face down to the mouthpiece and shouted the words himself. I can’t imagine how excited his Facebook friends were when he posted all of that amazing footage. He took about 100 photos with his phone, too.

Now, I generally don’t get crabby when people stand up in front of me and dance around at a show. That’s what you’re supposed to do. And I’m tall; I can usually see over people’s bobbing heads. But these jokers weren’t just dancing, they were obstructing the views of anyone in their vicinity like it was their job. I couldn’t see shit over their saluting, drink-hoisting and arm-waving, which they did the entire time.

We had good seats, too—fifth row smack dab in the center of the balcony, which is usually around where I look for seats at The Ryman if I can’t get in the first 10 rows or so on the floor. Luckily I was there with Ian, who is legally obligated to let me invade his personal space, because I spent most of the show leaning into him so I could see around the spectacle in front of me and catch a glimpse of the band.

Oh well. It was still a good show. I could still see the giant phallic phoenix they raised on the stage, and from what I could tell Jack Black and Kyle Gass didn’t stray too far from their microphones so I don’t think I missed any grand theatrics. I supposed I could’ve complained to an usher, but these guys were having what I’m pretty sure was the best night of their entire lives. Or maybe it was their first concert. Either way, I hope Ian and I earned a little bit of concert karma* for sitting behind that ridiculousness for a couple hours.

*I also deserve concert karma for not calling out all the freaking line-cutters in the merchandise line that caused me to miss out on getting a Hatch Show print!! We got there early so I could buy one, but tons of people just marched on up and nobody would do anything, so by the time I was able to get to the front they had sold out. Sad times.

Oh, Bonnaroo

You’d think after 11 years they’d get that when tickets go on sale, a lot of people are going to want to buy them. Today at 10:30 a.m. I perched in front of my laptop, dutifully waiting for 11 a.m. so that I could buy tickets for Ian and I, hopefully at the lowest price point ($20 per ticket lower than the highest price).

Screw you, Bonnaroo

After two and a half hours, I shut down the computer without a single ticket. I felt kind of insulted; I’d been kicked out of the system, given “unknown error” pages, had my browser(s) crashed multiple times. The one time I finally made it to the page where I could enter my credit card information I was told I’d taken too long and had run out the 15 minute clock. It literally took 14 minutes and 40 seconds to get through three pages to the final stretch, and then I got the big middle finger.

Eventually Bonnaroo took their ticketing system offline and replaced the fun graphic on their website’s home page with a note saying they’d be back later to let us know what’s going on. Around 8 p.m. I found a message on their Facebook page saying they’d let us know by Monday night when tickets will be going on sale. Again. Let’s hope they can get their shit together by then.

Otherwise, Ian and I are going to The Hangout festival instead.

State Rep. Richard Floyd, the latest winner in the “Make Tennessee Look Like Assholes” contest

There are a few things that immediately jumped out at me regarding what Tennessee State Rep. Richard Floyd said, besides the obvious fact that it’s so unabashedly discriminatory I had to check my calendar to make sure we hadn’t been transported back to the pre-civil-rights era in this country.

1. For someone claiming to be concerned about the welfare of women, why is he creeping on the women’s dressing room? As a woman, I would not be worried by someone, regardless of gender, bringing a pile of clothes into a fitting room area where I’m also trying on clothes (in a private stall, for fuck’s sake, so NOBODY can see me try to jam myself into skinny jeans). However, I would be unnerved by an old man loitering outside, taking note of who goes in and out. That’s a call to mall security waiting to happen.

2. He’s an old guy, so I’m going to assume that his wife and daughters are adults. Why is he even accompanying them to the dressing room? Does he not think they can handle shopping for clothes on their own? That they need his protection? This whole “I am man, I must protect my womanly property” shtick is so tired. I feel sorry for his wife and daughters that they have to deal with someone in their life who obviously thinks so little of their ability to perform regular adult activities, like go to the store and try on clothes, without needing him present to hold their hands.

3. Why the violence? There’s a huge difference between “I am made uncomfortable by this” and “I WILL FUCKING MURDER YOU UNLESS THERE IS A LAW THAT STOPS YOU FROM DOING SOMETHING THAT MAKES ME UNCOMFORTABLE.” The fact that this isn’t just some random weirdo ranting on an Internet forum but an actual elected official, chosen to represent the views of people in this state, is beyond scary.

From STFU, Conservatives:

[TRIGGER WARNING: Transphobic Violence]

I believe if I was standing at a dressing room and my wife or one of my daughters was in the dressing room and a man tried to go in there — I don’t care if he thinks he’s a woman and tries on clothes with them in there — I’d just try to stomp a mudhole in him and then stomp him dry.

Don’t ask me to adjust to their perverted way of thinking and put my family at risk. We cannot continue to let these people dominate how society acts and reacts. Now if somebody thinks he’s a woman and he’s a man and wants to try on women’s clothes, let him take them into the men’s bathroom or dressing room.

Believe it or not, I need to practice my smack-talk

A week ago, the closest I came to caring about football was getting excited about tailgating before the MTSU games and then stumbling into the stadium in just enough time to buy popcorn and catch the end of the fourth quarter.

And now, all of a sudden, I’m playing in two fantasy football leagues and trying to figure out when I need to scream at the TV and when I need to silently plead with my players to not fuck me over. Ok, I’m also trying to figure out how to remember who all I have on my teams.

Also: A big middle finger to whoever designed the UI for the Yahoo and ESPN fantasy football sites. It’s as if some assclown with a master’s in annoyance was given full-reign over Microsoft FrontPage and decided to try for his PhD in confusing the ever-loving shit out of anyone who would access these sites.

As if fantasy football isn’t stressful enough already.

Some deer inside the inflatable Meatwad

Some kids sitting on folding chairs inside of the inflatable Meatwad told me the deer were Meatwad’s brain. I told them they obviously have never seen an episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force. They asked what that was. I shook my head and walked out.

As I was leaving, I heard them say, “That was weird.”

Yeah, I’m the weird one. You assholes are sitting inside a giant inflatable meatball and don’t have any idea what it means.

Thanks for littering my neighborhood, Molly Short!

On Friday—EARTH DAY, FOR CHRISSAKES—Ian and I discovered an Avon rep had littered our subdivision with her pamphlets. And I don’t mean left them on our doorsteps. I mean threw them anywhere in the general vicinity of what might be considered near the door if you were a completely oblivious asshole: On the sidewalk, in the mulch, in the grassy common areas. The pamphlet above was half in the mulch, half on the sidewalk at the end of someone’s walkway. Nowhere near their front door.

I called the number listed and left a message, asking her if she was going to come back and pick up her mess, but of course I never heard back.

People, is it really that difficult to not throw your shit, whether it’s garbage or promotional material, all over the goddamn ground?!

Stop spamming me, Diane Black

In the wake of the vote to defund of Planned Parenthood, I sent an email to my representative, Diane Black, informing her of my disappointment in her vote. Admittedly, it was a canned email scraped from Planned Parenthood’s site, but I figured sending something to acknowledge my disappointment was better than nothing. Predictably, I received a canned response back explaining why she doesn’t want to fund abortions.

Ok, except she’s completely ignoring the fact that only about 3 percent of Planned Parenthood’s services involve abortion-related care, and none of the federal money they receive can be used for abortion services by law.

I obviously wasn’t going to argue with Diane Black, especially via email with a staffer at that, so I just grumbled and deleted the message. (Incidentally, I just tried to dig up the email and can’t find it anywhere. So much for archiving, Gmail.)

But today I got a spam email from her telling me about her newsletter and how to sign up for it. She also explains that I can unsubscribe at any time; which is all well and good, except I didn’t ask for her to continue to email my ass in the first place. And there was no unsubscribe option on that email.

Since email spam is one of my biggest pet peeves, and public officials who send out mass emails without the choice to opt out piss me off even more, I decided to write back. I’m sure she won’t even see it, and the staffer who does will laugh and shake his head at my heathen, baby-killing ways, but I don’t care. Here are the emails:

Dear Mrs. Morris,

Did you know that each week I put out an e-newsletter on my work for you in Washington? If you would like to sign up, just click here. I will only ever use your contact information for official purposes and will never share it. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Diane Black
Member of Congress

And my response:

Please remove me from your email list. I do not support nor do I want to hear from you, as you seek to limit and harm the health and choices of other women. Your vote against Planned Parenthood makes you an abomination to our gender.

Megan Morris

I wanted to sign it “smooches” but decided against it.

This burning the Koran business

Let me start out by saying, in case you’re new around here, that I do not support all this stupid Islam- and Muslim-bashing that’s suddenly come into fashion lately. I am no fan of any organized religion—I mostly identify as an atheist with the occasional pagan bent—but I tend to view Christianity in an especially negative light due to my own experiences and the overarching manner in which Christianity is used in this country as a crutch to hurt, exclude and bully others. For a religion whose chief text preaches tolerance, that seems to be the first thing to get thrown out the window in situations where I’d think it would be needed the most.

ANYWAY. So about this burning the Koran. I understand why people are upset that some dude is getting all the crazies riled up and excited about burning it. What I don’t understand, however, is why people keep talking about it, effectively giving this mustachioed nutjob a worldwide stage to preach his intolerance.

Maybe I’m naive, but I assumed people burned books all the time. I mean, there have got to be people in small towns still burning copies of Catcher in the Rye and Heather Has Two Mommies, right? I just assumed people burned books like the Koran as well as any other random texts they might find that deal with religions other than Christianity. Hell, aren’t there some fringe Christian groups that burn Bibles different from their own preferred version?

I don’t mean to be insensitive, and I get that a big display of burning a religion’s holy book is not going to be good for our foreign relations, but why are we paying so much attention to this guy?? It’s just some asshat in Florida, not President Obama or Paris Hilton or Oprah or some other big-deal, influential celebrity that’s running the show here, guys.

So what’s my point? I don’t know. I’d like to think that on one hand, if every time some whackjob decided to burn something in a grand display of ignorance we just ignored him, flicking the mention of him away like you would a fly buzzing around the adult table at dinner, people would get the concept that if you don’t feed the trolls they eventually get bored and disappear.

But I also realize that, as a whole, people are stupid. And there are bound to be those who would interpret the silent treatment of the offender to mean not “This is so dumb it doesn’t deserve a response” but instead “Silence means consent!” and decide to jump on the intolerance bandwagon to bigotsville, where a large, angry, jingoist mob lives.

I don’t know the answer. What I do know is that I’m getting really tired of all of the intolerance in this country, and the way that it’s being spun as patriotism and morality instead of the ugliness, hatred and fear it really is.

Pat Robertson is an asshat

First off, for some reason he thinks Murfreesboro, a city with more than 101,000 residents as of the 2009 census, is a “small town.” Murfreesboro is no stranger to the “small town” insult, but generally it’s hurled by Nashvillians pissed off at Rutherford Countians jamming up I-24 with commuting traffic or Vanderbilt alums crabby that MTSU beat them at football again.

Secondly, Robertson has decided that local Muslims could bribe county officials—apparently with $10,000—an insult to both the Muslim community and the local politicians. The Rutherford County mayor recognizes Robertson as a nutjob, saying that his comments “were so ridiculous they do not deserve a response.”

But the best part? Robertson’s worried that “Muslims could end up taking over the city council to pass ordinances that require public prayer and foot washing.”

Oh, you mean how Christians around the country are working on requiring prayer in school, and denying gay people their right to marry and women governance over their own bodies?

Yeah, god forbid we should let one specific religion dictate how the rest of society conducts itself. Oh wait.


What can brown do for me? Apparently nothing since they don’t think my house exists.

Dear UPS:

When someone comes into one of your stores with a package to mail to her sister, someone who she more than likely knows the address of, it is neither correct nor helpful to refer to an old, tattered book and then tell her that not only is she using the wrong ZIP code because her sister’s town only has one (FYI: It has seven), but that she has the entire address wrong because her sister’s street DOESN’T EVEN EXIST. Not only does that insult my sister’s intelligence, it makes me feel homeless. And unless you’re going to recoup the past six years of my mortgage payments from Suntrust for me, that is NOT COOL.

I’m going to go ahead and assume that the UPS clerk my sister had the unfortunate luck of dealing with that day was recovering from a brain aneurysm, because I don’t see how a major shipping company can instruct their clerks to fact-check addresses in a tome that was most likely printed during the height of the Pony Express.

Now, I’ve visited UPS stores before and never had anyone question my recipient’s address, so I’m also going to assume that it is just this particular suburban Chicago location that, for whatever reason, refuses to acknowledge the continued rapid growth of cities across the nation. Growth that yields new neighborhoods, streets and houses—all of which would render this dust-covered address-finding relic unusable and cost-prohibitive to update on any semblence of a regular basis.

All of this, UPS, to say that if my goddamn camera cord doesn’t make it to my house because you forced my sister to put the wrong ZIP code on the package and then tried to shame her into believing that the house she’s visited me in several times doesn’t actually exist, you’re going to have a seriously pissed-off woman on your hands.

Who, according to you, lives on a made-up street in a ZIP code that doesn’t exist. So good luck finding me after I egg your car, fuckface.

UPDATE: The package made it to my house. Consider yourself lucky, UPS.