insurance design

Smoking Charges Ignite

Last night, Amy took Anna, our seven-year-old, to the dress rehearsal for her 2015 dance recital. I was left in charge of Will, our nine-year-old, and Ella, our three-year-old. What follows is a litany of the kids showing me that I exist in their world as a piece of tightly-spun twine, permanently...

[ Swap Article ]

Sad Child

Mimicry

Our actions become our kids' reactions. Not exactly new. Not exactly Newtonian (pause while joke sinks in). But it's a truism all the same. ...

[ Swap Article ]

Car radio

Piece of Sh*t Car Reprise

When I was in high-school, a popular song named "Ode to My Car," by Adam Sandler, spun regularly on the radio. No, it didn't. All foul-mouthed teenage boys wished such happy, unfiltered radio days would appear, but that didn't stop the explicit lyrics from making an impact, even if the song's plot...

[ Swap Article ]

ad-sample

Advertise Here

How comfortable are you bearing it all? I’m not talking about your soul or taking the drywall down to the studs in a wild fit of inspiration after watching HGTV. I’m talking about getting naked. Well, mostly naked. At Toastmasters …...

[ Swap Article ]

Re-gifting

Certain messes in life are unavoidable. If you get a DUI and your hair is sufficiently mussed or you manage to jam your finger into the nearest outlet just prior to the mug-shot, chances are you'll be a big-time celebrity some day. ...

[ Swap Article ]

A Reasonable Explanation

Therapist: Take me back to the beginning. Tell me how it all got started, how you eventually wound up holding the bloody knife in the aftermath of your killing spree. I'm sure there's a reasonable explanation....

[ Swap Article ]

That's a Mouthful

Waking up to the sounds of birds and (outside) insects is alluring, and when you have your second 10th cup of coffee and realize you are on vacation, and this auditory lovemaking is real, not the result of an ambitious-carpet-cleaning hallucination, you can finally relax, letting your bulk stress...

[ Swap Article ]

Stupid Piece of ... Oh, That's Right

I'm a realist. I call things like they are, and if I look stupid in the process, well, so be it. ...

[ Swap Article ]

Deadly Donuts

The morning started off good. Four eggs fluffed with a splash of milk, mixed with Parmesan and salt and black pepper and red pepper flakes and slathered with Cholula hot sauce; four ounces of Bob Evan's spicy Italian sausage (sorry for the smell, honey, luv ya) fried into the wonderful concoction;...

[ Swap Article ]

When Did I Become a Pushover?

I've never thought of myself as the Ultimate Fighter type. As a kid, whenever the possibility of bodily harm came up, I tried to avoid confrontation. But if the issue was pressed, I could stand up and issue fake threats along with the best of them and hope that my manufactured bravado was enough to...

[ Swap Article ]

As I Approach 30

I live in a small town. Colona, IL has a population of just over 5,000. As a jogger, this means I am usually only assaulted with exhaust fumes a few times whenever I decide to go outside to burn some calories. But as far as the type of people passing me on the roadside? Over this, I have no control....

[ Swap Article ]

0
Portrait of handsome young man with stylish haircut in swinwear posing with American flag over gray background. Perfect hair & skin. Close up. Studio shot

Filed Under , on April 6th, 2019

American Speedo

By Seth Kabala

How comfortable are you bearing it all? I’m not talking about your soul or taking the drywall down to the studs in a wild fit of inspiration after watching HGTV. I’m talking about getting naked. Well, mostly naked.

At Toastmasters this week, my table topic was on why it would be good to live at the top of Mount Hood. Only one to two minutes to describe why putting manhood literally front and center on top of a mountain was a good idea. What could go wrong? Mr. Demure, time to step out of the room with Mrs. Aghast.

I could have mentioned the charm of Timberline Lodge, the beauty of the view from 7,000 feet, or the quality time spent with family who, in 2016, were visiting from the Midwest and with whom we had journeyed to Mount Hood for the first time. I mentioned going up the mountain, parking, and walking past Timberline. But as soon as we exited the parking lot, I shifted gears to the Speedo-wearing skier who had glided by in front of my family and me as we were looking for trails. Not only was he wearing a Speedo; he was wearing an American flag print Speedo, with sunglasses. (Not on the Speedo; on his face. Where’s your mind?) Gotta watch out for the glare up there.

I said that I wanted to live on top of Mount Hood, because only up there would the culture of the Speedo be fully embraced. I talked about wearing a Chicago Cubs Speedo during baseball season and needing to watch out even more for foul balls, because of the lack of protection in that area. I said I could switch to the Green Bay Packers during football season (Speedo says if you can catch a pass while a grown-ass man dances in a Speedo in your field of vision, you can overcome anything) and to the Blazers during basketball season (Speedo says no shot is too hard. That’s an erection joke, in case your punchline-getting skills are flaccid today).

I did not say that playing with balls was a pastime of mine. This was Toastmasters, after all, not a comedy club, though I do try to blur that line as much as possible without angering the pearl clutchers too much. I could have said you’ve got to be proud of your balls, take care of your balls, represent the power of your balls behind the fabric of your colors. Missed opportunity.

What’s the problem? Don’t like innuendo? Good, I only used it in a few places. You can get offended at those, if you can find them.

I closed with desiring Speedo-wearing to be a normally accepted pattern of behavior. This should be the “standard practice of life,” were my exact words. I thought that was only achievable on top of Mount Hood, where you can be accepted as you are.

A ridiculous scenario, granted. But was I speaking toward a larger, unpursued, unexplored, unlauded truth? I was trying to be funny. I was trying to get laughs. That’s what I always do when I give a table topic mini speech. But it still amazes me how humor hits the truth. It cuts right through the ice and discovers the treasures frozen there because a noble man crash-landed a century earlier in pursuit of saving lives and escaping his problems with women. If you want to think I’m talking about Captain America, you go right ahead and do that.

What I’m really talking about is finding the courage and freedom to be you, whoever that is.

Maybe the guy sporting the American flag Speedo had a rare condition that only allowed him to wear clothes around his junk. If he wore a shirt and put any pressure on his skin beyond that from gravity and a gentle breeze, he’d blow up like a Gremlin. Who was I to tell him he needed to cover up? I’m nobody. I take that back. I am somebody, the type of person who will, if the wager is right and the beer is good, search Amazon for junk coverage of the Speedo variety and in the themes of my favorite sports teams. I will support American flag Speedo’s right to ski Mount Hood in the near nude.

No exploding humans on account of me.

Exploding knees?

That’s another thing.

FacebookGoogle+PinterestRedditTwittertumblrEmail



Leave a Reply





Seth Kabala

About: Seth Kabala
Seth is an entrepreneur, writer, and musician. He lives with his wife and three children in Portland, OR.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

0 Comments Load Comments


Old Camper or Crystal Meth Lab

Little Meth Lab on the Back 40

I told a colleague that you could buy 12 acres in rural Iowa, plus a private lake, forest, and a decent house for $325K. He mentioned something about using all the extra savings to catch the backwoods economic wave in Iowa and start up a meth lab operation. This colleague has lived his whole life in...

[ Swap Article ]

Children, not, allowed, sign

Barn Kids

Amy and I have been looking at properties with land, something on the order of 1-5 acres. One of these properties had several out-buildings (or outhouses, as Amy continues to misidentify them. Never at a loss for where to drop your drawers on our property!). These out-buildings weren't run-down,...

[ Swap Article ]

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Accidental Smellfungus

Toki has been our cat since 2012. He's a ragdoll breed, which means he's docile to the extreme. You know when cowboys ride bulls in the rodeo? Our kids used to treat Toki as their bull, and he dutifully complied, although in recent years, I've spotted him crawling toward the edge of the ring, if we...

[ Swap Article ]

Open and closed recycle brown carton delivery packaging box.

The Unboxing

Shortly after moving to Portland, I asked our office administrative specialist to order me a footrest. I asked for the footrest for a practical reason: lower back pressure relief. I have a stand-up desk. This works well to get my stand hours in during the day--Apple faithful, you know what I'm...

[ Swap Article ]

God character working on telemarketing vector illustration. Telemarketing, sales, business, marketing design concept

Let there Be Devices

We have over a dozen devices now, and the number is only going to grow from here. ...

[ Swap Article ]

Money eye bottle soda water isolated on mascot

Hydrating Water

Phil wasn't sure what caused his muscles to dehydrate and shrivel up into jerky encased in skin, but he understood the aftermath. His career was over. ...

[ Swap Article ]

Einstein - Think

You're Smart

We were talking around the dinner table about what it means to get a college degree. I said you pass a bunch of tests, and then they give you a piece of paper that says you're smart. I finished my explanation saying employers can rely on that piece of paper as evidence that you're smart. Anna, 11,...

[ Swap Article ]

Madre Greater than Padre

Madre > Padre

A couple weeks ago, Amy diagnosed and changed out all three fuses that controlled electrical flow to the outlets in our car. Super sexy. Super cool. When I say that Amy did it, I don't mean that I was standing on the sidelines, guiding hands and helping words coaching her to a successful solution. I...

[ Swap Article ]

Ben Comedy Main Headshot 2019 Lego Tshirt Hi Res_May 2019 Profile Piece

An Interview with Ben Rosenfeld (feature)

Acceptance and Current Events ...

[ Swap Article ]

Cartoon stick figure drawing conceptual illustration of angry man or businessman targeting with antique cannon ready to fire.

Bolt-Action Cannonball Sack

"Can you do the bolt-action cannonball sack?" Ella asked me today during bedtime. She was trying to remember the name of the move I do when I toss her over my shoulder and then flip her onto the bed. (I call it the fireman’s carry/toss.) Earlier, she was playing Fortnite with Will and must have...

[ Swap Article ]

?????????????????????????????????????????????????

Time Traveling Titan

At Toastmasters last week, the theme was National Velociraptor Awareness Day (a real thing). During Table Topics, one of the questions was this: describe your experience finding the first velociraptor claw. Tonight, the whole family is going to watch Avengers: Endgame. In the spirit of honoring the...

[ Swap Article ]

Customer icon emotions satisfaction meter with different symbol on background

Peaked Performance

I feel like the brain-training app Peak is a walking, talking (or, more accurately, a clicking, screen-time bloating) irony. The stated goal of this app is to improve your lifelong mental processing potential in several categories, like problem-solving and memory. The irony is that you Peak quickly....

[ Swap Article ]