Category Archives: Random Rants

Everyday items like money to days of the week to common situations.

Throw Away Your Bag of Dog Shit

I saw a bag of dog shit on my morning walk. I didn’t think much of it until I saw another bag of dog shit on the next block. And then another in the park, this one was actually hanging from a tree branch. It’s weird that someone had the time and consideration to bag up dog shit so people wouldn’t step in it, but then they just leave it there. It seems like a very time consuming way to litter. They even take the time to tie up the bag.

I don’t understand why it’s so hard to simply throw away your bag of dog shit. You already bagged it. That’s the bulk of the job right there. The worst part is over. Chuck it in a bin and you’re done. Task completed. You’re an asshole if you leave it for other people to deal with.

The many bags of deserted dog shit makes me wonder if there are multiple violators or if it’s a lone serial dog doo doo ditcher in my neighborhood. I’m curious but not determined to catch the culprit. I’ll keep an eye out but I’m not setting up any cameras or sting operations. I’d throw away the bags myself but I won’t touch anything I don’t have to in this time of Covid.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Changing Seasons

I’ve been out of work and sheltering in place since March 15th. That’s eight weeks and counting. Needless to say that I have a lot of free time these days. Netflix is great and all, but nature keeps me sane so I take the dog for epic walks in Golden Gate Park. My girlfriend is working from home, but she joins us on her lunch breaks when she can. We explore the park, taking different paths and trails looking for hidden gems like the buffalo paddock, gravity hill, the fly fishing pond… Golden Gate Park has many secrets worth discovering.

I’m spending a lot of time there. I’m starting to learn bird calls. I know that chirp is coming from that little guy with the red breast. I don’t know the name of the bird, but I know what it sounds like. I’m watching the flowers bud and bloom. I’m watching the days get longer. I saw normal American honeybees slowly became dangerous Asian murder hornets. For the first time in my life, I’m truly aware of the seasons changing. Spring is happening in front of my eyes. It’s sad that it only took 56 days of sheltering in place due to a global pandemic for me to finally see it.

Hope all you cool cats and kittens are staying healthy and happy. Don’t get coughed on!

Critically Rated at 15/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Growing My Hair Out

One of the many new hobbies I’ve picked up during shelter in place is growing my hair out. I’ve gotten pretty good at it. It’s easy when all the barbershops and salons are closed and I don’t trust my girlfriend with sharp objects. My last haircut was probably in late November or early December because I didn’t want to look shaggy in holiday photos. I should have gotten a haircut in March before I went on vacation but I ran out of time. I came back on March 10th, had a couple days of work, and then everything shut down.

So here I am, stuck inside with ever increasing follicles. My bangs cover my eyes, some strands reach down to my nostrils. I spent over fifteen years of my life with a shaved head, now I have the luscious locks of a 90’s heartthrob. I’m not used to it. I’ve started wearing hats when I leave the house, something I never did before unless I was going to a baseball game. When I’m at home I’ll alternate between wearing a beanie, a headband, or simply running my fingers through my hair. It’s so soft. It’s like a puppy that lives on my head.

I know I can just shave my head and be done with it. But it’s become a symbol. My untamed hair represents how life has forever changed. It’s the new normal. I will only cut my hair when this is over.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Starting to Recognize the Neighbors

My girlfriend and I go on daily walks with our dog around the neighborhood to get fresh air during this time of quarantine. A lot of my neighbors do the same. As a result I’ve started to recognize the people living in my neighborhood. I’ve realized that I recognize them a lot faster when they are walking their dogs. A lot of our conversations sound like “Oh look babe, it’s that little chihuahua with booties” and “There’s the husky with the blue eyes.”

Some of my neighbors are recognizable without their dogs. The guy who rides a unicycle sticks out. The old lady who meticulously maintains her front yard is always happy to return a wave hello. There’s a band of brothers that roll around on Razor scooters with matching helmets. I often see a young couple doing yoga on their balcony.

I’ve always been aware of the houses that surround mine. It took a a pandemic to make me appreciate the people that occupy them. I finally feel like I live in a neighborhood. I’m waiting by the front door, anxiously hoping someone needs to borrow a cup of sugar.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Space Enforcers

San Francisco has been sheltering at home for over a month and it’s starting to wear on people. I take my dog for a walk to the beach or the park every day and I’ve noticed that some people are starting to get agitated and possessive of their personal space. At least three times last week I’ve had someone say something about staying six feet apart or telling me to get back. I call them space enforcers.

They usually a bitter white person in their forties, often seen walking alone (occasionally on bikes), and don’t wear masks despite their paranoia. They are the Karens of Coronavirus. Not all space enforcers are Karens, but all Karens are space enforcers.

Just yesterday I was on the beach and a space enforcer told me I was walking too close to him. He was more than twelve feet away from me. I pointed at the big blue bandana on my face and said, “I’m way more than six feet away from you and I have a mask on. You’re the rude one contaminating the air. Stay the fuck at home if you’re so paranoid.” It was as eloquent as that but it’s my story so I’ll make myself look better.

Quarantine fatigue is starting to get to everyone. I try to be civil and give people their space. But I will always stand up to space enforcers. They aren’t making this situation any better.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed By Brendan H. Young

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Socialize Safely

FaceTime, Zoom, and Houseparty have been amazing in this time of social isolation, but nothing is better than an actual face to face interaction. Yesterday my girlfriend and I took the dogs out for a long walk in Golden Gate Park and on a whim I texted my friend Jerry and invited him and and his girlfriend to meet us. We settled on a meeting place in a nice meadow where we used to hang out.

Jerry and Dre got to the meadow before we did, and it was great watching the dogs get super excited when they saw them sitting on the grass. Honestly I was more excited to see them than the dogs were. We said our hellos as we sat down six feet away from them, the dogs playing in between us, cracked open a few beers, and just talked for a few hours enjoying the sunshine and each other’s company.

It felt normal, great even, like a weight being lifted from my shoulders that I didn’t even know was there. We didn’t shake hands or hug or do any form of physical interaction, but it was so therapeutic to just bask in the presence of other people. It was the best day of the apocalypse so far.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

Socialize Safely

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Quarantainment

I came up with a new word: quarantainment. It’s entertainment during quarantine. Playing cards or a board game is a form of quarantainment. So is video chatting or live streaming. Those lame videos of celebrities singing songs of hope? Also a form of quarantainment. Basically anything that keeps you entertained while being cooped up qualifies as quarantainment.

It’s a great word. Feel free to use it. Just remember you heard it from me first.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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The New Normal

The new normal is awful boring. I had two jobs. Now I’m cooped up at home with nothing but time and a slowly dwindling bank account. I’m lucky enough to live within walking distance to Ocean Beach and Golden Gate Park so I can escape the house and take the dogs out to enjoy nature. Taking out the dogs and going to the store are the highlights of my days now. Especially since I finished watching Tiger King.

I make sure to never leave without a bottle of hand sanitizer. I’ve gotten pretty good at not touching my face in public. I wait until I get home, thoroughly wash my hands, then rub my face. Social distancing from friends is easy (thanks to video calls). Social distancing from strangers is a little bit harder (sidewalks aren’t wide enough).

I would rather be bored than make things worse. If we have to shelter in place, so be it. Let’s be introverts for another month or two and let time slog on until this becomes a weird memory that we can all look back on together. Life goes on. We can get through this. We will. We have to.

To my friends in the restaurant industry: hang in there. Be strong.

To my friends in the healthcare industry: thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

Be safe, stay healthy, and don’t get coughed on.

Critically Rated at 10/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Covid-19

Kind of hard to have a blog and not discuss the elephant in the room: Coronavirus. Kinda hard not to be thinking about it since it took over the world. What started seemingly as a minor inconvenience has become a major disruption in life around the world. I went to Hawaii for a week in the beginning of March. I came back on the tenth to the beginning of a panic. Stores started running out of things. Work was a lot slower than usual. Then nonexistent. One job let me go and the other will be closed for three weeks or longer. I’m lucky that my rent is cheap and I have enough savings to get me through a month or two if I plan accordingly.

I’ve been doing what everyone else has been doing: taking it one day at a time. I’m trying not to freak out or panic. I don’t want this to be the new normal, but there’s a nagging feeling in the back of my mind that it might be the last time I’m out of the house for an extended period each time I run to the store. I try not to hoard but I’ll grab a canned good or some toilet paper or a household cleaner each time I’m out. Makes me feel like I’m doing something.

Netflix, HBO, Hulu, Disney+, and YouTube definitely help pass the time. I have a few books I want to read. We just bought a weed whacker so I foresee yard work in my future. Maybe I’ll teach my girlfriend how to finally play cribbage. In the mean time I’m trying to stay sane and healthy and not think about the inevitable zombies that come next.

People are dying, people are suffering, people are hurting, people are scared. I’m ok. I can’t complain so I won’t complain. It’s a crazy time for all of us. I’m glad we are in it together. Be happy, be safe, don’t get coughed on.

And holy shit, Jeff Bezos is going to make so much money off this apocalypse.

Critically Rated at 2/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Leap Day 2020

Today is February 29th, 2020. It is the Leap Day of the Leap Year. I feel like we have to acknowledge that because it doesn’t happen everyday. Once every four years or so by my calculations.

This is the first Leap Day with the coronavirus, so it’s extra special. It might be the last one with the coronavirus for better or worse. I hope everyone does something that they don’t normally do in honor of the occasion. Carpe diem and all that.

Today I made spare copies of my house key. I upgraded some of them into bottle openers. That’s a thing now. YOLO.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Panhandling on the Bus

I was on Muni (San Francisco’s public transportation system) the other day and a homeless guy got on and started begging for money. He had a whole spiel about how he was down on his luck and needed enough money to buy a breakfast sandwich and maybe a small coffee. His delivery was monotonous and robotic, you could tell that he used his speech all the time. He had it down pat.

All I could think was that he was begging the wrong crowd of people. We are all schlubs on the bus with him. Why are you asking me for money? My broke ass is taking the bus for a reason. Go ask the guy driving the Tesla to work. He’s the one with extra money.

Critically Rated at 7/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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A Pen He Saved…

I couldn’t think of anything to write about, so I opened my Notes app on my phone and went looking for ideas. I found one. It’s the story of my friend from work. He’s a server too and I noticed that he had an apron full of pens, with each pen being a different type and brand. I asked him why they were all different. He told me that he never buys pens. He takes the one that he finds and adds them to his collection. He rescues them and makes them his own. Smart guy. I guess that’s why they say a pen he saved is a pen he earned.

I crack myself up.

Critically Rated at 15/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Taking Your Shirt Off at the Barber Shop

I had to get a much needed haircut yesterday. I went to the local barber shop and there were a few people waiting in line before me. One of them was a local guy that I’ve seen around the neighborhood, and we started making small talk. He seemed like a pretty normal dude. Then it was his turn for his haircut. He got up, approached the chair, took off his shirt, and sat down. The barber didn’t say anything, she didn’t even blink. It was clear that he was a regular and this was his routine.

It was bizarre. I’ve never seen anyone strip down at the barber before. I get that trimmed hair gets itchy when it falls into your shirt, but you’re supposed to bear with it until you can take a shower. Showing off your nipples and back hair seems a little excessive. I’ve seen a lot of weird things in the city. Taking your shirt off at the barber shop is on the list now.

Critically Rated at 5/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Laura Linney’s Boobs in Love Actually

The holidays are here once again, and that means my girlfriend wants to watch Love Actually everyday. She put it on the other day and she started watching it with our roommate. She kept trying to get me to watch it with them, but I’ve seen it before and didn’t want to suffer through it again. At one point in the movie, Laura Linney takes off her shirt and has a brief nude scene. My girlfriend mentioned that Laura Linney’s boobs were on screen thinking that would entice me to watch it.

It definitely did not. I think I can speak for all straight males when I say that Laura Linney’s boobs are not a selling point. They do nothing to attract an audience. It’s a big waste of a nude scene. Especially when other cast members include Keira Knightly, January Jones, Elisha Cuthbert, Claudia Schiffer, Denise Richards, and Shannon Elizabeth. But somehow they thought we wanted to see Laura Linney’s boobs? I don’t get it. Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to go watch American Pie. Or maybe Wild Things. They have nude scenes that sell a movie.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Counting Toothpicks

A few years ago my friend was at my house and he knocked over a cup of toothpicks. The toothpicks fell on the floor and scattered everywhere. He looked down at the mess he created and said, “Aw man, I just dropped thirty-two toothpicks on the ground!”

I thought that was an oddly specific thing to say, so I counted the toothpicks. Lo and behold, there were exactly thirty-two toothpicks. I was amazed. A real life Rain Man in my own home! I had to test his skills. I grabbed a handful of change from my dresser, threw the coins on the floor, and asked him how many coins there were.

“I don’t know,” he said. “I just guessed how many toothpicks there were.”

And just like that, my sense of wonder shriveled away. I was duped. There is no magic in the world. Well played, Jon. Well played.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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A Bad Beach Bonfire

My old roommate and his girlfriend invited me to a bonfire last week. There’s a popular San Francisco spot on Ocean Beach with a bunch of fire pits available to the public. My roommate works at Beach Chalet which overlooks the fire pits. Each night he works he looks out and sees all the fires glowing in the distance and it inspired him to have a bonfire of his own.

So he called me up, invited me out, and he swooped by and picked me up, and the three of us went out to the beach with a box of wood. We parked the car, got out, and went in search of a fire pit. It was around 7:00 PM and it was already dark but we could see four other fires burning in the area. We walked around looking for a pit using the flashlights on our phones but couldn’t find any and gave up after a few minutes. We dug our own pit in the sand, while commenting how weird it was because I just saw the fire pits when I was there a few weeks earlier. Oh well, whatever, let’s dig a hole.

It was pretty windy out, but we managed to get the fire going. We laid out on the sand, cracked open some beers and a bottle of wine, listened to classic acoustic hits on Pandora, and caught up with each other. It was cold and breezy but the good company and roaring fire was making it an enjoyable evening.

And then a man emerged from the darkness and approached us. He clicked on a flashlight as he got near, revealing himself to be a cop. He asked what we were doing and where we were from. We answered by saying that we were having a fire and that we were locals. He retorted with, “Well, if you’re locals how come you didn’t know that fire season is over? Didn’t you think it was weird that you couldn’t find any fire pits?”

Ugh. Damnit. We failed. The cop went on to lecture us for a while before giving us an ultimatum: either get a citation or go to jail. We chose the citation. We turned off the music, sadly poured our precious booze over our beautiful fire, covered the embers with sand, and slinked away.

We walked in darkness back to the car. We glanced back over our shoulders and saw the cop approaching another bonfire. Those flames slowly died out as another citation was given. Cars get broken into, houses get robbed, people get killed, but rest assured the police are making bonfires on the beach a top priority. Your tax dollars at work.

Critically Rated at 5/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Watching TV With Subtitles On

My roommate has the unfortunate habit of watching TV with subtitles on. He always turns on closed captioning whenever he watches a movie or television show. He says it makes it easier to pay attention. I wholeheartedly disagree. Why would you watch an epic Marvel movie in high definition and turn on subtitles? A constant text scroll distracts the eye from the amazing visuals and special effects. I want to watch what’s happening, not read what I’m hearing.

He says that it’s normal. It’s not. That’s why you don’t see closed captioning in movie theaters. That’s why you have to go into the settings and manually activate it. It would come on automatically if the majority of people preferred it. But he insists on turning it on whenever we watch something. And inevitably halfway through the movie he stops watching. He’ll start playing on his phone or leave the room to lay down in his bed, leaving me to suffer through the unnecessary subtitles that he insisted he needed.

I understand that a lot of people like them. A lot of people like killing puppies too (they usually work at PETA). You have to recognize evil in order to stop it.

Critically Rated at 1/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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