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by David Todd McCarty | Friday, November 13, 2015

Everyone will tell you how they lost the weight. They can’t wait to tell you how they lost the weight. But no one tells you how they gained the weight. I’m sure it’s no mystery. Eat shitty. Sedentary lifestyle. Booze.

Well, this is my story.

I went to the doctor recently to make sure I wasn’t dying. So far so good, but they’re still going to do some tests. One involves sticking something down my throat. The other involves sticking something up my ass. Maybe they’ll meet in the middle and just determine that I’m too fat.

When I was a kid, I was really skinny. I would try lighting weights and taking protein powders. Nothing. I was a rail. Of course I was also really active. Sports. Cycling. Swimming. Just plain old running around. I was a kid on the move. No moss growing on me.

Sometime after college, when I had ceased to play sports and had discovered beer, I began to put on weight. But not in the way I had been hoping to in high school. It wasn’t extreme, but I wasn’t thin as a rail anymore.

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by David Todd McCarty | Thursday, November 12, 2015

I originally began writing this on Veteran’s Day, mostly in response to the flood of nonsense I saw on my Facebook feed. It was just sheep. No thought. Just empty, saccharine gestures.

I didn’t post it out of the respect that I do have for people who have served, or are still serving in the military. It’s an often difficult, thankless job with shitty pay, and very few benefits. I understand why they feel they provide a service to a largely ungrateful nation.

But, and you knew there was going to be a but, I have an issue with the whole thing and I think it’s disingenuous to pretend that I don’t.

The truth is, I have a hard time reconciling my displeasure with how we utilize our armed forces in this country, with the sacrifices of the people who serve.

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by David Todd McCarty | Wednesday, November 4, 2015

There is nothing more satisfying, more perfect, or even more mystifying, than a perfect slice of pizza. When done properly, pizza contains the perfect blend of chewy textures, combined with salty, acidic and smokey flavors, all in a food you can eat with your hands. And it’s cheap!

However, finding that perfect slice is much more daunting than you’d think. It’s such a simple food, with only a few ingredients, that you would think it wouldn’t be so hard to find, but if you really believe that, you’re probably from the Midwest and you’re wrong.

The great thing about truly good pizza is that it’s still a mystery. Is it the water, the dough, the oven, the cheese, the sauce? Yes. And at the same time, a resounding no.

At its most basic, pizza is dough (flour, water, salt, yeast) tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese. But a lot more goes into it than you’d think.

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by David Todd McCarty | Tuesday, November 3, 2015

We live in a loud world.

The music. The traffic. The colors. The entertainment. The styles. The music. It’s all deafening.

Kanye and Kardashians. Big egos and asses. Poster children for the era we currently find ourselves in. All hype. No humility.

Even the written word seems to have gotten loud. John Stewart doesn’t make a joke. He destroys. Obama doesn’t make a point. He annihilates the Republicans. She’s not pretty, she’s stunning. You didn’t find something amusing, you can’t stop laughing. It’s not mildly interesting, you won’t be able to believe your eyes.

There is no cool anymore. Just hype.

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by David Todd McCarty | Monday, November 2, 2015

“Our kids don’t really know how to play independently, seldom get lost in their imaginations, and are always two feet away from us. It drives us nuts. You’d think we spoiled them rotten but it sure doesn’t seem like we did. I’ve written about this as a cultural phenomenon of “narrowing worlds and great expectations” for parents but I can’t believe everyone struggles with this to the same extent as us. If you do, let me know! I don’t remember needing my parents so much in order to play. We didn’t access our parents so much when we were kids. We went outside and played and didn’t want to come in. Shouldn’t kids want to be away from their parents to not be watched so closely? It doesn’t make any sense to me. I can’t help but think we are blind to something we are doing to perpetuate this.”

My brother wrote this a few weeks ago and I’ve thought a lot about it since then and I’ve come up with one very simple truth that defines the difference between parents today and our parents a generation ago. We were afraid of our parents. Your kids aren’t.

I’m not talking about an abusive relationship, but there was a distance. They were adults. We were children. We didn’t expect them to come play with us. They had different lives that frankly, we weren’t invited to be a part of. If we weren’t outright afraid of them, we were at least a little intimidated by them. Now everyone tries to be their kid’s best friend.

There are other factors of course. We grew up in a time where it was perfectly acceptable to leave the house and be gone all day with zero supervision. I’m talking like 6-12 years of age. Try doing that today. Even if you wanted to, you’d probably get locked up.

When I was in the first grade, we lived in Edmond, Oklahoma. I would go play on the playground at the elementary school a few doors down. Sometimes, me and a friend would walk the two blocks to the local grocery store, and if we had money, buy a candy bar. I had to wait at the light and cross the street. This wasn’t a dirt road in the middle of nowhere. It was a typical suburban neighborhood.

I also remember being able to ride my bike to the local Five and Dime, a Woolworths. I honestly don’t remember how far it was, but far enough. At least part of it involved a trail between two houses. I would go buy BB’s for my Wrist Rocket, a high powered sling shot that was strong enough to break bottles. I would bring money, and buy bb’s, which even then the clerk had to get out of a locked case.

I was six.

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