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Things People Say Are Fun, But Really Aren’t

Considering that it is the first day of the New Year, I know a lot of my followers out there are going to make resolutions to get out there and expand their horizons. Of course, being the well rounded person that I am, I figured I could save a little time by telling you what horizon expanding activities to avoid, as I have done them already and determined that they are a fate worse than death.

Hot Air Ballooning – No athletic skill is required. You just get into a basket and go up in the air. Easy? Not a chance. Because the second that you make it to the point where you realize if you fall, you  die, is the same second you realize your floating around the fucking sky with nothing but a wicker basket and a helium filled trash bag keeping you from plummeting to your death. It’s supposed to be some kind of romantic outing? Really? Here’s an actual transcript from the last time I was dumb enough to get into one of those things.

hot air baloon

Faceless Ex – I just thought this would be a great way to celebrate our first year together.

Essa – On account of my deep-seated fear of heights? God, no wonder I’m going to screw your best friend six months from now

Faceless Ex – What?

Essa – Nothing. Hey, who’s that guy with the weird mustache?

Faceless Ex – He’s the balloon conductor. He steers the balloon using that stick.

Essa: – A stick? Please tell me that you didn’t just say this thing is getting steered with a stick. Also, how high does this go? (Peeks over edge nervously) We’re really high. Like ‘didn’t survive impact’ high. Wow! (clutches onto flimsy wicker railing ) Was that like hot air balloon turbulence? Jesus, we’re gonna die, we’re gonna die. Quick, Essa, pick a fucking religion. (does something that looks like a sign of the cross mixed with a rak’ah).

Faceless Ex – Calm down. (tries to give now hysterical Essa a hug) I’ll protect you.

Essa – From what? Fucking birds? If this thing crashes now there will be NO survivors. I don’t think you understand the urgency of our situation! (starts to fling her leg over railing) I’m gonna see if I can dangle and reach the ground safely before we get any higher.

Faceless Ex – (races to pull her back) What the hell are you doing?

Essa – You can let this thing crash into a freeway and smear your body parts all over the off ramp for all I fucking care. I’m getting the hell out of Dodge! (attempts to launch herself over again)

Faceless Ex – Mustache guy, little help here?

Mustache Guy – no hablan Inglés.

Essa – He doesn’t even speak fucking English!?!

Faceless Ex – How much English does stick steering require?

Essa – (clutches Faceless Ex by the collar) I swear to God, if I don’t survive this, I’m taking you to hell with me.


Sounds easy? Come back and talk to me after you’ve tangled with the rainbow balloon of death.

Indoor Rock Climbing – Totally pointless. “Hey, I made it to the top of the gymnasium wall. Neat, I guess I’ll climb down .” Um, what? Also, not nearly as easy as it looks. About halfway in, you start to realize (if you are me) that you are more designed for lounging and sitting than climbing.  Also, around the same point in time you realize how out of shape you are, you start to realize that everyone could be staring at your ass. It’s not just a feeling; they really are. And they’re laughing at you.

Flying a Kite – ‘Go fly a kite.’ It’s a way of telling someone to screw off by telling them to go do something easy. It ain’t easy. Last time I attempted kite flying, I even printed off Google directions. Ten minutes later, I had a broken kite tangled in about 4000 feet of string. Do not trust Google for your kite flying research.

Learning German – It is allegedly the easiest language to learn. That’s what most class advisors will tell you. What they won’t tell you is that while the wording might be easy, the accent is slightly more difficult. Like, you would need to rip out you tongue and shove is back in backwards to say it right, difficult. Two years there and I could only say two words correctly. “Train station” and “porn”. If I needed a pornographic train station, I was good. Anything else, screwed. Once, one of my friends attempted to order in a German McDonalds. For some reason, whatever she said sent the staff into a panicked frenzy and they starting giving her Cokes like she was holding them hostage. I’m not entirely sure, but we might have robbed a place. Lesson learned. If you’re going to learn a foreign language, steer clear of German.

If you’re smart, you might consider this the year where you resolve to not make any more resolutions. Expanding your horizons is boring and scary. Wouldn’t you rather be inside watching Project Runway instead? I know I would. Instead of making 2013 the year you change your life, why not make it a filler year? You know, one of those years where nothing major happens and you skip over it in your scrap book.  Screw resolutions. Stay inside. You earned it.



26 thoughts on “Things People Say Are Fun, But Really Aren’t

  1. Oh my word you took the thoughts straight out of my brain regarding hot air ballooning. I just don’t get it! Yes the views are probably amazing, BUT YOU’RE IN A WICKER BASKET! No thank you, and thank you for solidifying my feelings of never ever wanting to do that.

  2. Just like dogs are for petting and sniffing luggage at airports, but not racing, balloons are for birthday parties and not transportation! I’ve studied German, and it’s only slightly easier than English. Since England is on the far western edge of Europe, its language collected all the garbage from the rest of the continent; kind of like the Gulf Coast collects all the garbage that floats westward from the Atlantic.

  3. Completely agree with hot air ballooning. I went on one at Disneyland over the summer, it wasn’t actually a hot air balloon because it went up and down on a piece of cable but it bloody terrified me.
    Also agreeing with indoor rock climbing, I tried that last year and regretted it when I was about 2 foot off the ground. I’m just not meant to climb back down things.

  4. I am so happy to see you haven’t jumped out of an airplane! My opinion of you remains high.

    My adopted mother was German, I grew up hearing it and lived in Germany as a child. People think I should still remember the language, it is at best rather ugly isn’t it.

  5. Nice post, but before trying German, you might wish to learn the difference betwee “your” and “you’re”. (second paragraph, third line).

    Seriously, the easiest second laguage to learn is the one that you run across a lot in your daily life. There’s nothing like being reminded often. It’s something for which North Americans are not well positioned. If you like opera, it’s Italian or German. If you’re in the southwest, it’s Spanish. German has much crazier grammar and syntax than French or Spanish, and the vocabulary is easy only in the beginning. It gets very hard once you’re much beyond “hello”.

      • The irony gods get me every time. There was actually a second typo in “laguage” that I noticed later. But I see a qualitative difference between a typo and using the wrong word. There’s also that possessive apostrophe: “someone’s”.

      • I’m familiar with the differences between your and you’re, if that is what your (<— look, I did it wrong again!) trying to get at. In addition, if you’re uber concerned about grammar, you should take note of my philosophy on it in this post. http://essaalroc.com/2012/09/30/fuck-the-grammar-police/. You are not going to find the pristine use of commas and apostrophes your (<— head smack) looking for on this page. I would suggest Grammar Girl instead.

  6. I never said anything about grammar. Using “your” for “you’re” is choosing an entirely different word from what you mean. It’s like using “mouse” for “house”. People who do that with there/their/they’re and your/you’re get laughed at. A lot. Thanks for brightening my day with your malapropisms.

  7. Hey Essa

    For the first time ever I got scared reading something. When you put your leg over the side of the basket i felt my heart beating. Brilliant post. Thanks for the laughs.

    • Just writing it made my palms sweat! It will relieve you to know that I did not make it out of the basket. As I recall, I curled up in the fetal position on the floor until it was over.

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