Monday, 2 February 2009

He is the Lorax. He speaks for the trees.

heather We're super lucky this week to be joined at Collective HQ by some of our favorite writers. We asked them all following question: What five people would you most like to punch in the face? This is how Collective BFF Peefer answered:

I'm walking south down University Avenue in downtown Toronto. It's Sunday night, the streets are empty, and I'm alone. As the dark sky is about to burst with rain, I carry my umbrella at my side, unopened. No, that's wrong. I wield this umbrella, this incredible accessory which shoots RPG's and fireballs with tremendous power and scientific precision. I aim high and wipe out the 23rd floor of the Royal Bank tower. I fire low and char the mailbox across the street. Deftly, I spin my weapon as I return it to its holster, then draw it repeatedly with lightning speed to ward the city of evil.

Half a block away is a man, staggering toward me. I mind to my business of death and destruction and assume he will keep to his own. But as we close in on one another, he glares at me with wide dark eyes.

"Issamoa! Issamoa!" he yells.

"What?" I ask, wondering what language he's speaking.

"ISSAMOA!" he yells again, agitated as ever, then without warning, his large first flies up and clocks me one in the cheekbone. I feel the sting immediately.

My first instinct is to retaliate, but I suddenly realize that my umbrella is out of ammo. I consider that the man may be a crazy with a knife at the ready or he may be tripping on acid. Or, he may be upset that I shot him with my umbrella, which is entirely possible given the chaos which ensued while I was slaying villainous elements. Sadly, I retreat.

It's amazing—now, years later, while I sit at my laptop with a glass of merlot in the comforts of my home, I feel a sense of impulsive courage that I never experienced back then. So dear Mr. Crazy Trippin' Collateral Umbrella Damage (Maybe) Victim, take this on your left cheekbone: WHACK!


Forty-five minutes before my morning alarm is by far the worst imaginable time for you to do this:

It makes me experience intense feelings of what some may call anger. Dear Pre-Dawn Gagging Cat, I hate you, and I hate myself for hating you. I punch you in your pukey little face.


The evening is warm and humid. It's June. The sun is burning hot and will stay up for another two hours. As usual, I've come early, knowing I always take a little longer to warm up than the others. I sit myself in the grass—it was cut earlier in the day—unzip my bag, and pull out my cleats. I love the routine of lacing up my shoes. 'Gives me time to think about the game, time to smell the grass. But what? No laces? Why are there no laces in my shoes?! Others are arriving—Jason, Dan, Willie, Joe, our coach and his son. Someone I don't know drags the large mesh bag of balls.

I tell my coach my problem. I ask sheepishly for help, but it's no use. Dejected, I walk back to the parking lot to see what I might find in the big metal trash drum. Yes, it's a long shot, but I need to play. While I pick through orange peels and empty pop cans, the ref arrives. The game is about to start. Lying in the gravel behind the bin, something purple catches my eye. It's a girl's hair elastic, and I think it might work. I just need to find a way to cut it. The starting whistle blows and I look up. My coach is in the distance, facing me, yelling at me to hurry back to the field.

I haven't played competitive soccer for over a decade. Dear Recurring Soccer Anxiety Dream, I formally punch you in the face.


Dear Haters Of The Collective, you are evil and pathetic. I cannot believe anyone would spend a millisecond holding anything against these awesome women, much less an hour and ten minutes building a crappy website. I punch you in your stupid small collective face.


When I set a goal, I stick to it. It might be a 10K race time, and months of dedicated consistent training will follow. Maybe it's a 4pm Friday work deadline, and what's needed is a keen focus and a smart work ethic. I always succeed. It's just a matter of discipline.

I like to wake up at the crack of dawn and start my day with a routine of calisthenics, followed by breakfast and 25 minutes of reading, 15 minutes fiction, 10 minutes non-fiction. On work days, I'm the guy who parks in the best spot because I always get to the office first. On weekends, I never fail to accomplish something around the house—not just maintenance activities, but improvement. It's always about improvement for me. Never a leaky faucet in my home, I always say.

If there existed a polar opposite to this person, it would be me. Dear Wasted Potential, SMACK!!! I punch you in the face. Had I the will, this would be the hardest punch of all.

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