Wait For It… a blog by Andy Ross

Riding Instructions

Posted on January 13, 2011


Hello, folks, welcome to Smiling Sunrise Ranch. I'm your trail guide, Pete. Y'all signed up for the two hour horseback ride? Great. Before you get on your horses, I have a few instructions.

First off, you should have signed a waiver absolving Smiling Sunrise Ranch of any responsibility for any injuries you might sustain on this ride. Our horses are trained, but riding horses is never a 100% safe activity.

Any first-time riders here? Wow, that's a lot of hands. Well, don't worry. You should be okay as long as the horses don't get spooked.

I see some of you are wearing rain ponchos. I ask that you not take those off during the ride, as that might spook the horses. We've got some high winds today, which could bring down a branch or two. If that happens, it might spook the horses. Also, we've got snakes in these hills. That'll spook the horses.

Please take of your sunglasses, since glare from sunglasses will spook the horses. Also baseball caps tend to spook the horses. If any of you ladies are wearing perfume, that might spook the horses.

There's a real spooky cactus down in the gorge. It looks like an old witch carrying a VCR. That'll spook the horses. The horses can also get spooked by a cloud or the lack of clouds.

Coughing will spook the horses. If the rider is thinking about mice or gerbils, that'll spook the horses. Um ... if any of you are closet organizers for a living, that'll spook the horses. Sitting too high in the saddle will spook the horses. Or too low.

One of the horses is named Vladimir. His name tends to spook him. Another one is named Spooky.

What else? Oscar race rumors will spook the horses. Sand sometimes spooks the horses. If your horse hiccups and burps at the same time, that'll definitely spook the horses. Mustaches, sideburns, goatees--those all spook the horses.

Finally, try not to be nervous or scared. That'll for sure spook the horses. And, then you'll probably get thrown and die of a broken neck.

Alright, let's head out. Yeehaw!


Your Apology

Posted on January 12, 2011

You're saying I have to actually accept your apology? I've never accepted an apology before. I wouldn't know where to start.

Isn't it enough that I acknowledge your apology? See, that's how I normally do things. You apologize; I nod and say "uh huh"; then, I explain exactly what you did wrong back to you. That way you know that I recognize your many faults, and we can move forward.

Well, I guess we can't really move forward, because I refuse to stop seething. I just keep looping through all the things you've done wrong, which implies that I still have a problem with you. Which I do. That's the whole point.

If I accept your apology, that ends it right there. Clean slate. Tabula rasa. It means I can never again passive-aggressively bring up your misdeed. What's the point in that? It's as if you don't want me holding petty grudges. Wha?

If I accept your apology, there would be no snowballing of emotional baggage. [Shut up, I know it's a mixed metaphor. Give me a break. Don't point out my mixed metaphors again, unless you want an earful about the time you ate the last donut. I'm still mad about that.]

Listen, what I'm saying is this: You apologized. That's on you. If you crave forgiveness so bad, maybe you shouldn't do anything wrong in the first place.

Now, get off your knees and stop crying. You're making me feel empathy for your mistakes. I hate that.


Probably Not Danny Aiello

Posted on January 11, 2011


Five reasons why this guy in front of me at the grocery store probably isn't actor Danny Aiello:

1) I don't think Danny Aiello would be at a grocery store in Sioux City, Iowa.

2) Even if he was in Iowa and in the grocery store, I don't think he'd be buying generic Cheerios. He can probably afford real Cheerios.

3) This guy is wearing hoop earrings. Danny Aiello probably wears one earring, yes. But, if he does, it's most likely a diamond stud. That's just a guess, but he seems like the kind of older guy who wears a diamond stud. [Quick aside: Isn't it crazy when you see an interview with Harrison Ford, and he has a diamond stud earring? It's crazy, right? I mean, that guy is Hans Solo. An earring on him seems so out of place and mid-life crisis-y. Maybe it's just me, but it always catches me off guard.]

4) This person sounds nothing like Danny Aiello. The timbre of his voice is much higher, and there isn't any New York accent. Also, I think I heard an "okey dokey," which I firmly believe Danny Aiello would never say.

5) It's a woman. She just turned, and I could finally make out that it's a woman. Boy, that is very unfortunate--both for her and, I guess, for Danny Aiello--that I would make that mistake. Wow, I would never have guessed that that was a woman. Yikes. I wonder if people have mistaken her for Danny Aiello before. I wouldn't be surprised.


Ice Cream Novelties

Posted on January 10, 2011

A list of frozen novelties in order of my favorite to least favorite:


Hawaiian Shaved Ice

Frozen Snickers bar

Cherry Popsicle

Non-Cherry Popsicle

"Real Fruit" Popsicle

"Real Vegetable" Popsicle

"Real Fish" Popsicle

Uncooked Frozen Lasagna

Freezer-Burned Mango Mochi

Single Ice Cube

Chocolate-Covered Frozen Banana [Very intimidating.]

Ice Cream Club Sandwich

Winter Flagpole

Unintentionally Frozen Yogurt

Mice Cream Sandwich

Snow Cylinder

Bag of Frozen Black Pepper



Posted on January 7, 2011

Hmm, I wonder if I should tell this masseuse that I’m deathly allergic to lavender? Nah, I bet it’ll be alright.

I mean, he’s a professional, and I’m sure he knows best. If he wanted to learn if I had any allergies, he would've asked. Well, I guess he did ask and I said no. But, a professional would have understood I was just being polite, right?

He’s probably not using lavender anyway. It’s probably shea butter. Shea butter would make sense. Although, my back is starting to get hot and itchy. There might be lavender in the massage oil. Can I be sure of that, though? My wheezing suggests yes.

Maybe it’s just a different massage technique. Maybe he’s only using a little lavender to shock my system into relaxation. Who am I to jump in and tell this guy how to do his job? He’s been giving massages for years. Meanwhile, I’ve only spent the last few minutes receiving my excruciating massage.

Sometimes I wish I weren’t so Midwestern. I mean, what’s the worst that could happen? I could speak up about my lavender allergy and he might take me to the ER before I die? Oh, but that would probably put him out. He must have other massage appointments later. I don’t want him to lose any future business. And, he might feel guilty about using lavender in the first place. That settles it; I won’t say anything.

I should say something. I think my motor functions are shutting down.

How do I approach it? Maybe something like, “Hey, funny story. Remember when you asked if I had allergies and I said no? Well, I just automatically say no when I think that’s what people want to hear.” Nah, that sounds too pushy.

Maybe I could ask for a break, and I could quietly sneak out and drive myself to the hospital. That is, if I can keep my eyes from swelling shut. Would my masseuse be offended if I snuck out halfway through a massage? Probably. I’d better not risk it.

I have an idea. Maybe I can text Colleen, and she could call the spa and tell them that I’m allergic to lavender. Then someone at the desk would come back and tell the masseuse. I wonder if all that could happen in the next minute or so. Because, I’m feeling a little woozy. No wait, now I remember seeing a “no cellphones” sign in the lobby. I’d better not text.

You know what? Let’s just ride it out and see where this goes.

Hey, what’s that tunnel of light up ahead? Hi, Grandpa Ross. Long time no see.


Travel Trips

Posted on January 6, 2011

Face it, winter is horrible, and it’s turning you into a grump-ass jerk. You should take a break and go somewhere nice and warm. For all of our sakes.

When you do, please follow these helpful tips for traveling:

- When traveling, wear clothes that make you feel like an adult human. Are you seriously wearing pajama pants and UGGs to the airport? Are you fucking serious right now?

- Be careful choosing a hotel. The ones spelled “hostel” are filled with vomiting Australian youths.

- If you get a deal on a vacation package that sounds too good to be true, prepare yourself for the possibility—the slightest possibility—that you’re about to be kidnapped and hunted for sport.

- Tip the bellhop one dollar for every bag or two dollars for every crate filled with live tigers.

- For overseas travel, buy a translation dictionary with common phrases you can wildly jab at once you give up trying to pronounce things.

- Did you double-check that the oven was off? Shoot, I should have asked that one first before you left. I hope that doesn’t make you obsessively nervous.

- Just because you’re on vacation it doesn’t mean you have to eat ice cream for every meal. At least, that’s some weird joke my wife keeps trying to tell me. I don’t get it.

- For security, hide a rolled up hundred dollar bill inside your shockingly deep bellybutton.

- The only cure for jet lag is to kill the jet that bit you.

- Remember the try the local cuisine. Maybe the McNuggets in Thailand are different that the ones where you live.

- Take a book. Beaches are a great place for reading while squinting.

- I heard from my friend Janice who heard from Elliot P who heard from his cousin that you can get pregnant from sitting in a hotel hot tub. For reals.

- Remember to take that rolled up hundred out of you bellybutton before it starts to smell like bellybutton.

- Unless you use every towel in the hotel bathroom, you lose.

- Souvenir t-shirts make great dusting rags after two years of never wearing them.

- If you use the phrase “whatever happens in blank stays in blank,” people will know that nothing interesting happened to you.


Men With Ponytails

Posted on January 5, 2011

If there’s one thing we can learn from today, it’s to treat every day like it’s “Men, Cut Off Your Ponytails Day.” Let’s take the joy and the goodwill we’ve felt from today’s celebration, and let’s carry it forward though the rest of our lives.

A lot of folks out there say to themselves, “Sure, I’ll celebrate men getting rid of their gross ponytails every January 5th, but why should I worry about it the rest of the year?” Because it’s important; that’s why. Do you want your kids to grow up in a world where men wear ponytails?

It’s surprisingly easy to apply the lessons we learned this “Men, Cut Off Your Ponytails Day” to our daily lives. Whether it’s as simple as providing sharp scissors to a friend already considering cutting off his ponytail or something subtler, like pointing out he’s so “brave” to draw attention to his receding hairline with a ponytail.

We’ve all been to a jam band concert. We’ve all met an aging poetry professor. Male ponytails are more prevalent every year despite our best efforts.

Stringy ponytails are bad enough. But, things have escalated, and now you can see lush, flowing ponytails on men. As if they’re Brazilian soccer stars or something. Dreadlocked ponytails, gray ponytails, curly, straight, frizzy ponytails---you might feel like the problem is too big, like it’s too far gone. But, it’s not.

You can play a part in stopping the queasy discomfort of waiting behind a male ponytail in line for a movie. You can help men look slightly less pathetic in their Ferraris. Simply go to the “Men, Cut Off Your Ponytails Day” website and download a PDF of handy tips for ending the scourge of men with ponytails.

I thank you, and your children thank you.


Mom’s Computer

Posted on January 4, 2011

Alright, Mom, let's set up this new computer you got for Christmas. Now, there are going to be some differences between this one and your old computer, because they’ve changed a bit since the mid-90s. For instance, when you turn this one on, notice how it doesn't make a grinding ka-chunk ka-chunk sound?

The second thing you might note is that this new computer starts up in less than 45 minutes. Also, it’s not dirty beige. And, the screen doesn’t flicker a weird tangerine color. And, you can open email attachments without deleting something else first. And, you can have more than one window open at once. Welcome to the future, Mom. Tomorrow is here today.

You can even watch videos on your new computer. Just type in search terms for your interests, like “Diana Krall singing” or “knitting tutorials.” Oh, I got it—remember when you wanted to cook a duck, but you didn’t know how to prepare it? Well, let’s type in “boning a duck” and wait a sec and … OH MY GOD! THAT’S DISGUSTING!

Homepage, homepage! Click the little homepage button!

Mom, I am so sorry. I swear I had no idea that video was gonna come up. I’m sorry you saw that. I’m sorry I saw you seeing that.

Let’s try again. How about we try “de-boning a duck?” I’ll just type … that … in and … OH, C’MON! THAT’S JUST THE SAME VIDEO IN REVERSE WITH THE BENNY HILL MUSIC PLAYING!

Well, I guess it’s too early to explain what a “meme” or a “remix” is to you, but it’s a thing that happens on the Internet. And, I think we just bumped into one of the more repugnant ones. I promise the Internet is not all just ducks and men with psychosexual mental disorders.

Let’s give this one last try. We’ll forget about ducks and do a simple image search. Something safe like “hot air … balloon … pictures.” Now, we just wait for the page to load and … MOTHERFUCKER! THAT’S JUST GROSS! That is so gross, yo! Don’t they have a content filter system?!

Alright, that’s it. We’re turning off your computer. Mom, you are not to go on the Internet ever. You hear me? Everyone on the Internet is disgusting and crass and disgusting. They are disgusting dirtbags. Filthy, disgusting dirtbags.

Every single one of them.


New Year’s Resolutions

Posted on January 3, 2011


Some people only make one New Year’s resolution. That's a lot of pressure to either succeed or fail. I make a ton of resolutions. That way, even if I forget what I resolved to do/not do, I'll probably keep at least one or two of my New Year’s resolutions. Just through sheer luck. (It was actually my resolution last year to make more resolutions this year.)

Here's a list of my New Year’s resolutions for 2011. This year I resolve to:

- Remain the greatest dancer alive.

- Switch over from manual to electric boogaloo.

- Cut down to one cheeseburger per day.

- Rub some dirt on it and walk it off for crap’s sake.

- See one 3-D movie every day for two days.

- Stop drinking out of non-coconut containers.

- At least triple lutz. Maybe quadruple.

- Practice at least thrice weekly for my jug band.

- Finally finish my macaroni and tempera paint portrait of James Gandolfini as Gandalf the Wizard.

- Swim like no one’s watching.

- Do my multiplication tables without using my fingers.

- Buy a second ice bucket for emergency cocktail parties.

- Win a marathon through diligent cheating.

- Learn to how use chopsticks to play Chopsticks. [This one’s just a joke. I thought I’d lighten the mood on this blog. It gets pretty heavy.]

- Dress like I mean business, goddamnit.

- Finally read my autobiography to see if the ghostwriter captured my je ne sais quoi.

- Polish up my je ne sais quoi. Wink wink … wink.

- Go back in time and prevent the Snowpocalypse.

- Stop buying off-brand sock garters. It J. Jacob Masterson's or nothin'.

- Treat every jellybean like it's my last.

- Parlay my modeling fame into a rap album and cookbook.

- Enter into more blood oaths. What the hey, why not?

- Have my blog jump the shark in such a bold, dynamic way as to make shark jumping cool again.

- Be even more paralyzed by social anxiety.


Employee Review

Posted on December 31, 2010

Hey, Ted, thanks for coming in. Have a seat. I thought maybe we could wrap up the winter quarter with an informal employee review. Just to see how things are going in the office and if there’s anything we could do better. Here, I’ve printed up a worksheet.

How are things progressing for you? Are you satisfied with your position here? Because, I have to tell you, I’ve noticed a few changes in your demeanor lately. Subtle stuff. Like, I’ve noticed you’ve started pointing to things with your middle finger.

I understand some people naturally use their middle finger to point out numbers in Excel or graphs on an overhead. But, I clearly remember you using your index finger before. So, that makes it seem like you’re giving everybody the finger whenever you point. Like I said, these are subtle changes.

Also, in the lobby, you don’t push the revolving door anymore. You stand and let the other people in the revolving door push it for you. Now, nothing in the employee handbook that says you have to push when going through a revolving door, but it makes me wonder what else you’re not doing.

Do you know what I’m saying, Ted? I don’t expect everyone to go above and beyond. I understand that this is just a day job for many of you guys. But, here’s a little example: Every evening, I like to take my wastepaper bin and walk it over to that trash closet. It makes Hector’s job a little easier, and it’s really not a lot of extra work for me.

In your cubical, though, I’ve noticed the wastepaper bin is always overflowing at night with human feces. See the difference there?

I understand you’re busy cutting out pictures of your coworkers and X-ing out the eyes, but it sure would be helpful if you could empty out your trash. Especially if you’re going to be shitting in it.

I mean, you clearly have time to post angry, threatening notes in the break room. And, leaving all those dead mice under Mrs. Gregory’s keyboard must take up a lot of your day. Maybe instead you could put that energy into sharing the workload.

I hope you understand I’m not trying to be the harsh taskmaster here. I’m just trying to keep the cogs moving, you know? Ted? Are you listening to me? You seem distracted.

Ted, do you have anything to add at this point? No? You’re just gonna sit there clutching that letter opener and mouthing curse words? Well, that’s your prerogative.

Alright, well … good talk. Um, I hope to see you at the office bowling party after the break, and I wish you a very happy New Year, Ted. Keep up the good ... nevermind. You can go now.

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