This is the Bus to Crazytown, It's a Non-Stop, and I'll Be Your Driver

I don't eat wet food.

Now that that's out there, perhaps we can truly delve into the crazy that is the Drunken Rogue. Ever since I was a kid the information that I just blurted out in that first sentence has been controlled, and parceled out in small amounts like "Deep Throat's" expose of the Nixon administration. There are people I have known literally all my life that don't (or didn't) know that information. They knew SOMETHING, but would never have guessed the full truth, and well, I didn't bother to set them straight. I knew when I started blogging that sooner or later I was going to get around to this. For whatever reason today seemed like the right time. So here in (what I hope will be) a humorous format, is the extent of my crazy. Enjoy.

I could make you a list of the things I don't eat, but that list would be so large as to probably crash Blogger, MySpace and perhaps the internet itself. I don't want that on my head, so I'll list the things I DO eat:

Hamburgers, french fries, corn dogs, biscuits, bacon, sausage (patties not links), most breads (ie. dinner rolls, wheat bread, cornbread etc.), ice cream (only vanilla), popsicles, cereal (frosted flakes, fruit loops, apple jacks), potato chips (regular doritos, plain ruffles, bbq lays and fritos), fig newtons, honey buns, peanut butter & cheese crackers, and finally reese's peanut butter cups.

That's it. That's not an abbreviated list, or the highlights. That's the full menu for the Drunken Rogue. I know...take a minute and wrap your mind around it. It's ok. I'll wait.

Alright, is everybody ready to move on now? No? Okay, the rest of the class is going to move ahead, feel free to take all the time you need and catch up with us when you're ready. It's alright, everyone works at their own pace here at Drunken Rogue University.

For the rest of us, you may be thinking, "I can't believe it. What were his parents thinking?" or perhaps, "This explains so much. All those times I saw Joel going to McDonald's, now I realize why." or perhaps, "Who cares? So some guy that has so much time on his hands that he writes a blog a day, eats nothing but junk food? What's new?" or perhaps, "Whatever happened to that children's story Joel was writing on here, "Yamamma!", when's he going to finish?" Whichever category you fall into, I'm with you (except for the 'Yamamma!' question, I have no idea where that story was going).

How did I get like this? Some say a lightning bolt split the sky above Bastrop some twenty-five years ago, and the Drunken Rogue dropped from the ozone-filled air, fully formed and already weird. Of course when I say "some say" I mean this one drunk homeless man I spoke with outside of the Quik-Stop last weekend. The story that I tell (and therefore the one you're going to get) is the following. When I was a baby, I was (as I am now) utterly perfect in every way (humble, too). My parents showered me with love and attention, that is, when they weren't dropping me on my head and letting me eat lead paint (and I don't mean paint chips, I used to spoon the stuff straight out of the bucket). When it came time for me to start trying to use the spoon to feed myself, they let me give it a shot. I was fairly abysmal at it. I made such a mess in fact those first couple of times that they decided they had moved too fast, and would return to handling the spoon themselves. This offended the Baby Rogue so greatly that I refused to eat from the spoon. I kept eating finger foods (fried okra was a big favorite of mine at this time), but wouldn't have anything to do with a spoon.

Now, let's look at the logistics of this situation. Parents big and strong. Baby Rogue small and weak. It seems like there's an obvious answer, just force the kid to eat his veggies and what not. But (those of you with kids back me up) when a child (especially of the infant variety) is stubbornly refusing direction, it's hard to psych yourself into using brute force to correct that behavior, I mean you're not going to beat them. And apparently I was an exceptionally stubborn baby. I of course don't remember any of this first hand, and so can only go on what I've been told. All indications are that my parents (and grandparents) gave a valiant effort but short of starvation or physical abuse, I wasn't breaking.

Let's skip ahead a couple of years to things I can remember. While my mother and grandmother mostly allowed my charm, wit and uncanny good looks to lull them into giving up on pursuing the expansion of my diet, my father was not so quick to admit defeat. Once (we're talking four or five years old) he force-fed me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. This didn't meet my dietary satisfaction and was immediately regurgitated on Pops. A couple of years later, he and I went at over an apple of all things. Dad was determined that I was going to eat it, and I was determined I wasn't. He was right, but it took about an hour or two of fairly severe whipping alternated with "Are you going to take a bite of the apple or not?"

After seeing the above paragraph in print, it makes my Dad look like a bad guy. That is not the way I feel at all (although at the time, I probably did). He was just trying anything he could think of (short of the above mentioned, starvation) to get his kid to eat healthy foods (or just different foods). He, my mom, grandparents and aunt for that matter all did their best. In my opinion, it was no fault of their own that I ended up this way. It was fate.

Now, let's define the whole "wet food" thing. I have had countless questions on that one in the past. People (correctly) point out, "Ice Cream is sorta wet!" Yes, very good. You get a gold star! The "wet food" thing is just a blanket way to describe it quickly when I am eventually found out. Here's how this generally goes: I meet someone and we become friends. We hang out a few times, and eventually we (generally with a group) end up going out to eat. Here we are at (Generic Italian Restaurant) everybody else is ordering pasta, or lasagna or what not, and the waiter finally gets to the Drunken Rogue. "I'll just have a drink, thanks." The questions immediately arise. Are you not hungry? That works for a while, but after a couple of trips to dinner it's suddenly weird that a guy over two-hundred pounds never seems hungry. So, I give them a piece of the truth. "I just really like fast food. Why spend my money on more expensive stuff, if I don't like it?" That also holds for a while, but then my new friend and I go to McDonald's together. I suggest we go in, but he says, "Naw, Drive thru. It's faster." We make our separate orders, and pick them up at the last window. But there's a problem. My order is incorrect. You see, I don't just like hamburgers. I like plain hamburgers. As in meat and bread. Yeah, that one generally causes discussion.

So what causes me to turn down all these other delicious foods? A massive complex, that's what. My specific symptoms share similarities with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and Aspberger's Syndrome. Probably about a dozen other different kinds of crazy too, but those are the ones I've looked into. I literally cannot force myself to eat most foods. I get sick to my stomach (literally) thinking about eating some. Others just don't taste good when I try them. Examples of that last issue are (very dry) things like fried chicken and pancakes. Pancakes is a food that I have tried over and over to eat, but just can't stand it. Pizza is one that I can't bring myself to try (I get sick at the stomach) but I love to smell.

How does all this affect my every day life? Less than you might imagine. When I was young and dating, I just wouldn't tell the girl until we were really serious. Thank you, modern dating etiquette. If I had been a teenager even twenty years earlier, there's no way I could have gotten away with dating, but not ever taking them to dinner. With friends, the close ones know what's up and the more distant ones don't really care one way or the other. Health-wise, it might eventually bite me in the butt (or more specifically the heart) but so far, I'm in about peak physical condition for a 210lb blogging Dj. My blood pressure is low, my cholesterol low, my heartrate normal, etc. etc. etc. I'm fat, but that's mostly because I don't do anything, not so much because of what I eat. As my friend Richard says, "You're the Mr. Fusion of homo sapiens. The next step in human evolution."

Why am I like this? I think there's got to be a reason. As stated above, I don't blame my parents, they raised a good kid. One that happens to not eat wet food. I'm a big believer in fate. I think my idea of destiny and larger purpose is what makes me like shows like "Lost" and "Heroes" so much. I have no idea what the reason is, but I do think there is a distinct reason I'm like this. There is something that will happen because of it, or some place I'll be that is exactly where I'm supposed to be or what I'm supposed to do. It's a means to an end in my opinion. It'll be like the final scene in "Signs" where everybody's quirk suddenly has a purpose, and everything makes sense. Hmm, maybe Shymalan will make a movie about me someday. Of course, I could just be deluding myself.

Now that it's all out there in the open, feel free to ask me about it, point and laugh over cyberspace, ignore it completely or act as if it never happened, whatever you prefer. I'll be here eating my hamburger. Plain.