thanksgiving-2014

Thankfulosophy

As I sit here this morning at 6 AM, getting ready for a busy weekend filled with Thanksgiving plus the opportunity to preside over the wedding of one of my oldest friends, I feel happy. Even though it’s 6 AM and still dark out and still raining and I can still hear the echoes of last night’s grapefruit vodka smacking me in the brain.

On Facebook, after seeing all of the anger and hurt over what’s happening in Ferguson (and what continues to perpetuate nationwide), I asked people to contribute something positive by commenting with at least one thing that made them feel thankful. Over 100 responded, and I realized that I hadn’t actually said what I am thankful for. Or for what I am thankful if you want to be a grammatically correct douchebag.

So here are 75 things that make me feel thankful. I’m just writing this without editing, and without thinking too hard about it, but that’s mostly because I’m sitting naked at my computer and I have employees coming over in an hour so I don’t have much time.

I am thankful for . . . .

      1. Good health.
      2. Comic book movies.
      3. Women. All of them.
      4. The opportunities I have had in stand-up comedy.
        Holy shit. My head is fucking huge.
      5. My audience, online and off.
      6. Coke Zero.
      7. Canadians.
      8. French Canadians, to a lesser extent.
      9. My good friends.
      10. My great friends – the ones with benefits.
      11. Music that makes me dance.
      12. Music that makes girls dance on a stage while I give them dollar bills.
        Comedian Adam Avitable jokes about girls with weirdly pronounced names
      13. Mister Roger’s Neighborhood.
      14. Joss Whedon. He inspires me to create.
      15. The chances I’ve had at love.
      16. The even more chances I’ve had at lust.
      17. Chocolate.
      18. Ninjas.
      19. Good books written by my favorite authors.
      20. Great books written by my friends.
      21. That euphoric feeling when I get off stage.
      22. Bacon.
        That time Adam Avitable tried cooking bacon on top of Fritos and Doritos
      23. Beauties in their twenties with soulful eyes.
      24. Girls in their thirties who are in their sexual peak.
      25. Ladies in their forties who know what they want.
      26. Women in their fifties who look like they’re in their thirties.
      27. Cougars in their sixties who can take their teeth out.
        Comedian Avitable talks about dating and using the classified ads
      28. That feeling of sleeping with freshly laundered sheets on the bed.
      29. Superman. And The Flash. My favorites.
      30. People who still like to talk on the phone.
      31. Nudity, in all its forms.
      32. Republicans with social consciences.
      33. Democrats who don’t chain themselves to trees.
      34. Libertarians who understand that they’re only shooting themselves in their collective feet.
      35. A night with great company.
      36. The next morning with no shame.
      37. Winters in Florida.
        May your day be filled to the brim with humps galore.
      38. Summers anywhere else.
      39. Laughter.
      40. A medium rare steak.
      41. The turmoil of my life four years ago that changed who I am today for the better.
      42. My family, when they’re not driving me crazy.
      43. Okay. My family, even when they drive me batshit insane.
      44. Jimmy Fallon. His enthusiasm and obvious love for what he does is infectious.
      45. Veteran comedians who have been supportive and helpful as I begin my career.
      46. Veteran comedians who are terrible assholes and show me how not to be as I begin my career.
      47. Mayonnaise. And Ranch. In fact, any of the white, creamy dressings that we consume. Except that one.
      48. Hot showers and hot shaves.
        Comedian Adam Avitable shaves his beard
      49. That feeling that one time when I was able to take a photo that made it look like I looked good in a suit even though the reality was far, far, far, from that.
      50. The look in a child’s eyes when he or she laughs.
      51. The look in a child’s eyes when you put on scary clown makeup and scare her, scarring her for life and giving her coulrophobia.
        Adam Avitable dressed as a scary clown for Halloween
      52. Giving and receiving. YOU know what I mean.
      53. Redheads. They’re amazing. I love them. Please come to me, oh ginger princesses.
      54. My intelligence.
      55. My complete lack of common sense, because if I had the same level of book smarts and street smarts, I’d probably go be a supervillain.
      56. My ability to take selfies that make me look much thinner and more attractive than I am in person.
        Self-proclaimed king of selfies, Adam Avitable
      57. People who keep my ego in check.
      58. People who boost my ego.
      59. People who stroke my ego slowly, slowly, slowly, faster, faster, faster, OH YEAH.
      60. Anyone who can make me laugh.
      61. Going to the movies almost every Friday.
      62. The ability to bring so many of my friends happiness by presiding over their weddings, even though I terrify them a little since they never know what I might say during the ceremony.
        Orlando Comedian Adam Avitable presides over a wedding
      63. Being my own boss.
      64. Louis CK. He’s such a creative juggernaut and he didn’t make it until later in life – he’s a role model.
      65. The privileges and opportunities I grew up with.
      66. The opportunities I made for myself because of hard work.
      67. My years at Christian Academy of Learning because they challenged me, even if I dressed like a weirdo.
        Adam Avitable, Grace Academy, age 5
      68. My years in high school because they gave me direction.
      69. My years in college because I gained perspective.
      70. My years in law school because I learned how to think differently than most.
      71. People who get my humor.
      72. People who don’t get my humor and challenge me to see their perspective.
      73. People who have no sense of humor making me appreciate those who do.
      74. Myself. Because, duh. I’m awesome.
      75. You.

Happy Thanksgiving to those of you who celebrate it, and happy Thursday to those of you who don’t, except today’s Wednesday but I won’t be around tomorrow, so suck it.

I mean, umm, love and peace and boners to all!

Dating Avitable

12 Things You Need To Know Before You Date Avitable

I’ve seen a recent prevalence of lists detailing everything you need to know about dating in today’s world. Here are some examples I’ve seen when browsing my Facebook feed today alone:

Hell, I even wrote one of my own two years ago:  9 Things A Girl Should Know Before Her First Date With Avitable

I think it’s time for a new list of my own:

12 Things You Need To Know Before You Date Avitable

1. I’m intense.

Adam Avitable can be intense

Like, really intense. I actually listen to what you say and remember it, and I pay attention to you when you’re talking. I’m not controlling (anymore) but my attention can be overwhelming. It’s a sign of my affection, but if your personality isn’t strong enough, you won’t be able to handle me.

2. I don’t play games.

If I like you, I’ll text you. I’ll invite you to hang out, which actually means hang out, not have sex. I’ll ask you to dinner, and I’ll be honest with you. I think it’s immature to play any type of waiting game, and I have no problem telling you if I’m interested in you.

3. I won’t lie.

The old Avitable lied all the time. Since my divorce, I don’t believe in it anymore. That means that I’ll tell you exactly why I got divorced, what I’ve done since then, and always be up front with you about what I’m doing.

4. I snore.

Just be aware. If we’re at a point that you’ll be staying over, bring ear plugs. Just don’t get mad at me and also don’t think that there’s a Tyrannosaurus Rex in the bedroom too.

5. I’m dark.

Scary Clown Costume and Makeup

There’s no place where I won’t try to find humor. I think very dark thoughts sometimes, and I can be extremely morbid. I absolutely do not believe in sacred ground, especially when they’re based on antiquated traditions.

6. I’m authoritative.

If I don’t have an opinion about something, it’s because I don’t feel strongly enough either way and see the benefits to both sides. But if I do have an opinion about something, I will speak authoritatively as if it’s fact, and that can be frustrating. Especially since you’re clearly wrong in my eyes.

7. I’m not aggressive.

I have too many women friends who have been put in uncomfortable places by men, even inadvertenly, to be aggressive at first. I’m sure I’ve even pushed women to act in a way they didn’t really want to, as well. And now I’m terrified of doing it, so if you’re interested in me, you’ll have to make the first move. Or just be open and honest with me. I have no problem being aggressive after that.

8. I have no boundaries or shame.

Happy Nude Year from Adam Avitable

I’m naked on the Internet. You can’t have shame after that. I also have very close friendships with no boundaries, so if you have areas of your life that you won’t talk about, expect me to always be curious. There is no part of my life that I won’t share with you. Or with anyone.

9. I have almost all female friends.

Adam Avitable and his bevy of wayward women friends

I get along better with a lot of women than I do with many men. This means I have many close female friends, and I may spend time with them in ways that would cause you doubt if you didn’t trust me. But trusting me is paramount – we can’t date unless that exists, because I won’t give up friendships out of baggage that someone else is bringing to a relationship.

10. I don’t judge anyone.

You can tell me literally anything, and I won’t judge you. I’ve done some terrible things in my life, and I will always remember the people who didn’t judge me as those who helped me build myself back up.

11. I communicate openly.

This can’t be stressed enough. Ask me anything, and I’ll share. I won’t lie or obfuscate the truth, and I also talk about my emotions openly. Whether I’m happy, depressed, horny, sad, or angry, or anything in between, I’ll share it with you, and may even write about it publicly too.

12. I’m a narcissist.

Adam Avitable takes too many naked selfies.

I get my power from the attention I get from fans, readers, and friends. You will always have to share me with others in that way, because without that attention, I have no way of judging my worth to the world. If I wasn’t so empathetic, I would be the poster child for NPD. I also take lots and lots of selfies. Naked ones.

 

So, there you have it. The ideal applicant is a young, petite redhead with a penchant for sarcasm and a sharp intelligence, but we’re always looking at all applicants openly. Line up to the left for your oral interview.

If you know me, what else would you say someone should know before she dates me?

National Entrepreneur Center

Cupcakes, entrepreneurs, and a free pair of Southwest tickets.

Panoramic view of the National Entrepreneur Center in Orlando

I started my own business ten years ago. I did not, as I thought at that moment, know it all. I didn’t even know part of it. I also didn’t know about the National Entrepreneur Center.

Last night, I was invited to partake in an event with free wine and food where we could learn about the NEC and what they have to offer. They had me at free wine.

Sunshine Baker and Adam "Darkness" Avitable

I drink my wine like a classy MF – out of a red solo cup. Photo courtesy of Sunshine Baker. I’ll be the Darkness to her Sunshine.

Put on by Edgecore, with food from Tijuana Flats and cupcakes from Gigi’s Cupcakes, the event took place at the National Entrepreneur Center, located in its own huge section of the Fashion Square Mall.

The last time I voluntarily went into a mall, it was because a girl wanted my opinion (translation: credit card) on some outfits she was buying at Victoria’s Secret, so it was with some trepidation that I entered the vast wasteland of 90s consumerism, threading through kiosks offering everything from vaporizers to cell phone accessories to other products of dubious quality.

What I found was an impressive organization that provides free counseling, low-cost business seminars, and access to a fantastic list of resources, from the US Department of Commerce employees who help businesses who want to export out of the United States to the National Association of Women Business Owners: Orlando, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando and many others.

And then there were the amazing cupcakes. Gaze upon them and drool out of jealous deprival:

Gigi's Cupcakes of Orlando

Gigi's Cupcakes of Orlando

Anyone with aspirations of starting a business in Central Florida should stop by and take advantage of what the NEC has to offer. If you’re looking for some business ideas, here are some products and services that I think the market severely lacks:

  • Pizza delivery, but by strippers who stay and eat pizza and watch Futurama with you;
  • Sex ninjas;
  • Bacon seasoned with Red Bull for that caffeinated boost;
  • A video game where you just try to get your dad to say he’s proud of you even though you read books instead of playing sports;
  • A dating site that matches large hairy men with tiny beautiful redheads;
  • Trees that grow money, because it’s about time;
  • Instant cloning technology for adventurous sexual escapades;
  • An app that notifies the user of the closest place selling bacon; and
  • A U-turn signal for those assholes who screw everybody up in the left-turn lane at those 12-second green arrows all over Orlando.

Thanks again to the National Entrepreneur Center for hosting this event – every time I think I know everything about Orlando, I’m treated to gems like this place, which could benefit from more publicity and notice. And thank you for allowing me to offer this contest to my readers.

That’s right. How does the prospect of winning two MFing plane tickets from Southwest Air sound? One lucky reader will be chosen to win, and the contest ends on October 24th!

Just enter below, and then get your ass working on that sex ninjas business, okay?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rain on your wedding day

Divorce and the Lace Anniversay. Thirteen Years Later.

I still haven’t gotten rid of that fucking calendar notification.

Why not?

I don’t know.

It seems like it should be easy.

Just click “delete”.

Yet I can’t.

anniversary_02

Will I get married again? Sure. No. Maybe. There are too many steps from this point in my life to even get to the consideration of another marriage.

I should probably do more dating. Get into a healthy relationship with someone to whom I’m attracted, who I trust, who doesn’t have baggage that colors her every action. Find someone to share my life with.

But it’s so hard. I have an active social life. I’m out performing 3-4 nights a week. I work a day job that has taken over my life. I work until I stress myself out and then I crawl under the covers and sleep until I have to do something else. Where does someone else fit?

Today would have been my 13th anniversary. Thirteen years ago, I stood in a church, an immature 24-year old with no idea of the burdens coming his way, and professed a promise to someone whom he loved. And man, did I fuck that one up royally.

I think, maybe, it’s a good idea to keep the reminder around a bit longer. Not to wallow in the past but to remain motivated. This is my reminder to strive towards happiness, to avoid settling out of a fear of being alone, and to remain secure in who I am when I let someone new into my life.

So this year I’ll just buy myself something lacy and frilly and keep on moving forward. Do you think Victoria’s Secret has something that will fit a gorilla?

robyn-avitable-birthday

You Didn’t Hear It From Me, But My Mom Turns Sixty Today

“Now that you’re getting divorced, can I tell you what I really think about her?”
-Robyn L. Avitable, December 31, 2009

“What does NASA stand for? Need Another Seven Astronauts. Just don’t tell anyone at school I said that.”
-Robyn L. Avitable, January 29, 1986

Robyn Avitable being silly

Those two quotes sum my mother up perfectly. In the former, I see the massive love and support she provided even while knowing throughout my entire relationship that was she was right all along and I should have listened in the first place. The latter is demonstrable evidence of her morbidly razor sharp sense of humor and her total knowledge that at nine years old, I was ready to hear a joke about the Challenger explosion that had occurred less than 24 hours prior.

Robyn and Jim Avitable in front of Mount Rushmore

That’s my mother. Robyn Leah-Ann Smith Avitable, born July 12th, 1954. The only girl out of four children, she stayed ahead of her brothers by being the smartest, the most twisted, and the most independent. My mother reached a pinnacle in her career without once using her gender as a crutch, as a tool, or even acknowledging it at all. She never let the parameters of her job in healthcare keep her from accomplishing as much as she wanted, and I have always been impressed by the total respect that she commanded from those who were not only below her or on her level, but by those who outranked her.

Robyn Avitable at age 59

My mother has always been a leader. She didn’t have role models because she made her own path and became the person who inspired others. Throughout my childhood and even to this day, my mother was and remains the person that you go to when you have a problem. Any problem. She might not be able to solve it, but she’ll know where to start. And she’ll almost always be right.

Robyn Avitable hates pictures

Her confidence is unparalleled, and I have only seen a handful of times when that security was shaken. She knows what she wants, she has a plan to get it, and I have never seen her at a loss (though she does hate having her picture taken). Throughout my divorce, my father’s struggle with epilepsy, my grandmother’s descent into Alzheimer’s, and myriad family upheavals and drama, she’s been the anchor. I can’t think of a time when we didn’t look to my mother to tell us what to do next.

Now, she’s retired. She and my father (who took all of the recent photos in this post and posted them on his entertaining blog at http://jimandrob.tumblr.com/) are currently splitting their time between the house in Ormond Beach, where I grew up, and their place in Utah. I don’t see retirement lasting forever, though. My mother, a voracious reader with an appetite that rivals mine, will get bored with the relaxation and reading after time, and I’m sure she’ll set her sights on something new. Will she write a book that talks about her adventures at Mass General Hospital leading to her career at Memorial Hospital in Florida? Will she volunteer to care for those who can’t care for themselves? Or will she wait for one of us to have children of our own so she can just be a kick-ass grandmother? Time will tell.

Jimmy, Robyn, and Adam Avitable

Mom, I didn’t get you a gift card to Amazon – there’s no thought in that. I didn’t send you flowers, because you hate flowers. I didn’t get you anything tangible other than a birthday card because you buy what you want when you want to, and you have almost everything you want in life. The best gift I can give you is my skill with words (other than a grandchild – I know!), so this post is your birthday present. I would say that I hope you like it, but I know you will.

As I grow older, I recognize how similar we are. We may have different viewpoints, and we may not agree on some fundamental issues, but there’s nobody I would rather be like. When my friends come to me to be their problem solver, therapist, life preserver, motivator, comedian, and walking encyclopedia, I know my ability to fill those roles, pursue my own goals, and follow my own path is thanks in large part to you.

Mom, thank you for being the best role model and mentor that any son could ever ask for, and happy birthday. I love you.

Where Avitable lives.