And so, as we slip out of 2011 and into 2012, I leave you with some words of wisdom from a bright star in the modern poetry world:

It’s not about the money, money, money
We don’t need your money, money, money
We just wanna make the world dance,
Forget about the price tag
Ain’t about the (uh) Cha-Ching Cha-Ching
Ain’t about the (yeah) Ba-Bling Ba-Bling
Wanna make the world dance,
Forget about the price tag.

Happy new year, everyone!

More Important Contributions from the World Wide Web!

A little part of you has always wondered what an epic rap battle between Dr. Seuss and William Shakespeare would look like, right? No? Just me? Doesn’t matter. Check it out anyway. Then see what happens when TV hawker, Billy Mays and Ben Franklin throw down. Thank you, Internet.

Snake Oil and Other Quackery

Over the nearly five years I have had children, I have given a lot of thought to living longer. Not living longer in the mythical sense, but rather in the mundane, “Gee, it’s about time I start taking care of myself” sense. In those five years (and much longer, in fact), one thing has become painfully obvious. I am lazy. Lazy and unmotivated and altogether too enamored with food. And bourbon. And not exercising. These are each bad qualities separately. They are exceptionally bad qualities once they have joined forces.

And so it was that I decided to find a way around these negative qualities. Or rather, set upon finding a way to reconcile these negative traits with more positive traits. During a recent stint in physical therapy (for a nagging back problem), my physical therapist introduced me to something called the Bodyblade. For the uninitiated, the Bodyblade is a five foot long, flat composite “blade” with a rubber handgrip in the middle. The Bodyblade “rapidly changes directions at a rhythm of 4.5 cycles per second” and its “oscillating motion forces the shoulder muscles, as well as hundreds of other muscles, to contract 270 times a minute.” With marketing-speak like that, it is hard not to scoff at the Bodyblade. In fact, it is less accurate to say that my “physical therapist introduced me to the Bodyblade” than to say that I was actively mocking it when she exclaimed that it was, despite its As Seen on TV appearance (complete with Exercise Wall Chart!!), “awesome.” Shortly after that, I decided to hire my physical therapist as a trainer, and the Bodyblade, among other gym detritus, ended up on my Christmas wish list. (That it sat on that list beside a deep dish pizza pan illustrates the depths of my issues.)

So, given my initial reaction to the Bodyblade, it should have come as no surprise that my Uncle and cousin set about mocking the device before I had fully unwrapped it on Christmas Eve. If only they had seen the “Pro/Classic Instructional Workout DVD” that accompanied the blade. This period piece – set squarely in 1984 – along with their mocking, has caused me to wonder whether I have fallen for one of the oldest scams in the book. Is it possible I just purchased an Ab Belt? The ThighGlider ultimate thigh, bun and hip shaper? Oh, dear Lord, tell me I didn’t just buy a Shake Weight! I mean, the physical therapist said the thing is “awesome.” She is a Doctor of Physical Therapy for God’s sake. (I can hear my Uncle, the Harvard-educated ER doctor, laughing a hearty belly laugh at the concept of calling a physical therapist a doctor — he is a wonderful, kind man, but he is mean-spirited when it comes to things like this — but my point is simply that this is not someone offering to trade physical therapy services for Widespread Panic tickets on Craigslist.) Have I succumbed to the modern snake oil salesman?

I guess only time will tell. My hope is that the Bodyblade will be one of the tools I use to whip this rapidly expanding body into a decidedly less spherical shape, but if it isn’t, my Uncle and my cousin will have had the last laugh. At least there is plenty of room on the treadmill for storage.

You’ve Been Warned . . .

In thinking about launching the MuchAdo blog, I’ve given some thought to what makes a good blog. In my opinion, a good blog has focus – a central theme around which the posts coalesce. MuchAdo will have no such focus. That’s not to say I don’t have topics about which I’m passionate (my family, photography, cooking, etc.), I just don’t see writing a blog solely about any one of those things.

As the title implies (OK, pretty much overtly states), MuchAdo is about . . . well, nothing. I enjoy writing, and that is the purpose of MuchAdo. Of course, I could simply write stuff and save it to my computer, but it seems downright un-American to pass up the opportunity to engage in some good old fashioned narcissism. So, I present to the world (i.e., my wife) MuchAdo.

One obvious question comes to mind, “Will MuchAdo be like the blog version of Seinfeld?” It seems too early to answer that question definitively, but my guess is it will have all the whining with none of the entertainment value.

One last thing. I like parentheticals. I use them a lot. (You may have noticed that already.) I am not a linear thinker. My thoughts have a tendency to branch off into many, often unrelated, directions. Parentheticals give me the ability to . . . ooh, a shiny thing . . . what was I saying? Oh yeah, if you don’t like parentheticals (or series of ellipses), run away!

So, in short . . . MuchAdo: (1) about nothing in particular, (2) all the bad, and none of the good, aspects of Seinfeld, and (3) lots of parentheticals. Enjoy!