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To be clear, I’m not sure I know how to deal with humans anymore.

It’s been a while since I interacted in any meaningful in-person way with people outside my pod — but with the flurry of recent medical announcements and the prospect of Blorpsday (the fake day I keep telling my 4 year old will signify the end of the pandemic and usher in a golden age of playdates) upon us…a quick audit of my interpersonal skills is in order.

I vaguely recall that farting or burping at a party is expressly uncool.

I also remember someone telling me at some point, how somewhere, farting and/or burping after a meal is how some people display gratitude and appreciation. …

New York is alive and well and you’re going to reconsider your hasty life decisions.

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Photo by Jason Karp. (He’s staying in Queens…I mean, look at that view!)

Here’s the deal…I left too. Back on March 14, I went for dinner at my in-laws on Long Island…and stayed for 6 months.

For 180 days I steeped myself in a mix of cowardice, legitimate concern for the future, reposado tequila and zoom…taking refuge on a quiet suburban block, in a nice home with a yard, around neighbors I could ignore and who ignored me. …

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Look —from the way other parents post stories and share photos from their amazing Disney vacations, you can’t be blamed for thinking your ability to raise a healthy and stable child is inseparably linked to your delivering an A+ Disney experience.

As if, not getting to ride Space Mountain will somehow lead to little Johnny skinning Dalmatians.

Well, allow me to be the one to tell you…this is only partially true.

Kids are resilient and can overcome a lot…almost anything in fact…that …

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I can not overstate how much I don’t want my children to ever join the Dead Parent’s Club.

I understand that being inducted puts them in league with such noted members as Superman, Batman, Flash, Green Lantern, Spider-Man, Robin, even Elsa & Anna — and that membership could set my two amazing boys down the path to becoming inspired symbols of hope and selflessness

But it’s not the route I’d choose for them…mostly because…I don’t want to die.

Right now they’re 3 and 6, and I want to live to see them live. I want to introduce them to all of my interests, and watch them discover all their own various interests. …

If I’d known my new apartment came with naked neighbors, I’d have gladly paid an additional tax.

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Image for illustrative purposes only. This is not my actual view. The owners of these homes are never naked.

The first week after moving from Central Manhattan to slightly-east of Central Manhattan, our new apartment was a maze of cardboard box towers.

For my children, then 4 & 1, it was nothing less than an intricate labyrinth that lead to nowhere —which was proved time and time again when we’d lose them for a short while — only to discover them whimpering in a closet or a bathroom, trying to find their way back to the living room.

They get their sense of direction from me. The apartment simply isn’t that big. …

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The English language doesn’t have a word to accurately describe how nervous I am about dying on my upcoming business trip to Mexico City.

For context, I’ve been up since 3am, it’s now 3pm, I leave in 3 hours, and I’ve already eaten most of my favorite foods, created-and-ordered a photo album of all my family’s best memories, and told my wife and young kids I love them —which isn’t unusual — except that I also made them memorize my laptop and gmail passwords.

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Congratulations! Someone you know (or are related to) has asked you to be their Best Man, or Better Man, or Groomsman-who-they’d-like-to-say-a-few-words. It’s a high honor and carries with it 1–2 key responsibilities: Planning the Bachelor Party, and Making a Speech.

“Planning a Bachelor Party,” is not the subject of this missive. Of the three I’ve planned, two have ended with the bachelor ghosting relatively early in the night on account of “extreme hallucinations.”

I wish I was joking.

That said, I HAVE delivered four speeches for four men whom I consider brothers…one of whom is my cousin…and have developed a template for a speech that I guarantee will not feel cookie-cutter, will capture your audience, enchant the newlyweds, and endear you to all the parents and grandparents present. …

How could a beverage brand that sounds like the name of a person you would hire to get you safe passage across a river in Cambodia have had the kind of meteoric rise that sends fear into the two biggest global leaders in the space?

Focus on a good product + Flavors.

The flavor masters at La Croix, the sparkling water brand that basically solved the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, have PhDs in taking fruits who are perfect strangers, and mashing their individual Appleton and Bartokomous essences into unforgettable mouth fiestas.

Here are some flavors rumored to be joining the party soon — AND WHICH MY DUANE READE WILL ALMOST SURELY BE OUT OF ALL THE…

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Hats are slogans, not solutions

Time to take a cold, hard, sweaty, defined, muscular, look at ourselves America and come up with some real solutions. Here’s what I’m thinking:

  • Mandatory Latin classes and tax incentives for businesses that use Latin slogans (Gaudio Per Inflatio*)
  • Bring back the low-five
  • Carpet the great plains. (Nothing tacky, and nothing shag for god’s sake)
  • Institute National Taco Tuesday’s (free tacos!). Require all restaurants to comply.
  • Clone, like, 50 Amy Poehlers (but only like 2 Tina Feys. #SorryNotSorry)
  • Give every citizen a bald eagle
  • Less meetings / fewer conference calls
  • Turn Arizon’s Barringer Meteor Crater into a ball pit
  • Educate people from a young age about the advantageous and responsible use of taking on temporary…

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So here’s the deal with Doritos:

  • Doritos are flavored tortilla chips
  • Doritos were first released in 1966 after Frito-Lay’s VP of Marketing, Arch West, noticed how well the deep-fried, surplus tortillas with that day’s leftover seasoning were selling at the company’s Disneyland restaurant, Casa de Fritos.
  • “Nacho Cheese” flavor isn’t the original flavor. First there was “Bland” flavor, then there was “Taco” flavor and then finally, “Nacho Cheese”
  • “Nacho Cheese” flavored Doritos are meant to evoke the taste of very dusty nacho cheese on tortilla chips. …


Bradley A. Werner

I believe in the healing power of absurdity. Say hi @BradleyWerner

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