As I bring to order this week’s meeting of the Meatheads, I have a few orders of old business before I get to this week’s topic. By the way, that nickname was coined while I was watching the Emmy’s and Rob Reiner’s tribute to Jean Stapleton. It is a very loving nickname for those of you that read our little newsletter faithfully. I miss Archie and Edith….
So last week I sent out two newsletters. I try not to be intrusive and constantly blast out emails, but when I think it is important, I let ‘er fly. After the 2nd, I received an email that read “Please refrain from the use of profanities or obscenities in your email to me. Show a little class. Hi to your parents.”. I said to myself “Holy Crap, did I accidentally write something offensive?”. So I went back and very carefully read and re-read the two offending emails. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. Am I being punked? The comment came from an old friend of my Mom’s, and while I remembered him fondly from my childhood, he didn’t seem like the joking kind. So I read again. Then it hit me….The only thing he could be objecting to was the word CRAP! This struck me as really funny. This person has been receiving my newsletter since the beginning, and I seem to recall him commenting on a thing or two over the couple hundred I have sent out, so I know he read at least some of them. I’ve never been accused of being subtle. The word CRAP is in my company’s motto! The word CRAP is included in every email I send out in my signature. I remember having a conversation with Laura when Jackson was about 7 or 8. He was in bed, came out to get a glass of water, and we asked him if he had brushed his teeth. “Awww, CRAP” our little angel blurted. Laura and I looked at each other not sure what to do. Ignore it? Punish him? Laugh hysterically like we were doing on the inside? In the end I shrugged my shoulders and said “I’m giving him that one as a pass, crap is not a swear word”. And so it was.
In 2010 my mom, Laura and I had a long conversation about using the word CRAP in our motto. Again, it was decided that the impact of the motto far exceeded the use of a borderline cuss word. In the end, I wrote it with my finger in concrete across the front of the slab our Chop Shop sits on and the rest is history. I went to reply to his email and in re-reading it I saw the second sentence. Show a little class??? Now I’m mad and I’m thinking several words that would have this gentleman’s head pop off his shoulders. I cuss way more than I should. I know how to swear a blue streak with the best of them. But, at least I hope, that I limit it to appropriate situations. Poker night with the boys, we fire away words some of you have never even heard. Hit your shin on the sharp bed frame in the middle of the night, I dare you not throw throw a few f-bombs. But in general, I try to be respectful of my audience in any given situation. What I take great offence to is the accusation that anything I do is without a LITTLE class.
My newsletter has been called many things, none of which is CLASSY. But to imply that it and I have little or no class is just annoying. Snarky… fine. Obnoxious… sometimes. Sarcastic… most of the time because it’s a reflection of my personality. Entertaining… I hope so. But accuse me of lacking class because of the word CRAP and you are also accusing my wife, son and mother of lacking class. Do that out loud and we will have a conversation that introduces you to a whole new level of classlessness (had to rewrite that last word four times, still not sure it’s a word). In the end, put things in context before you get offended and things will seem a lot less worthy of an email to an old friend’s son. Then again, without these occasional silly emails, what would I have to write about???
So…. in the immortal words of Ron Burgundy….
“Keep It Classy, Meatheads!”