Last Tuesday I went to see Kees van Kooten. If you’re American you’ll have no idea who I’m talking about, but if you’re Dutch you legally have to, and good manners should make you envy me. Van Kooten used to make tv sketch shows with a guy called Wim de Bie and they were must see tv for the entire country on Sunday night. Unfortunately they stopped some years ago, but van Kooten has recently released a book with his favourite American and English short funny stories.
These stories (think David Sedaris but he’s not in there for some reason) are all “little man” humour and based upon the stupid things men and women (but lets face it, mostly men) do to themselves and others. Stupid things like trying to open a bank account but getting so nervous you screw it up. Or making a complete mess out of somebody else’s medicine cabinet. They’re stories that make you laugh (reeeaaally hard), but at the same time you know that it so could happen to you.
One of the stories he read from was by an American author in the early 20th century (I think) who wrote a piece about him punishing objects that hurt him; if he walks into a door he decided to ‘hurt’ it back by slapping it. You know that a door can’t feel pain, but yet you automatically put human emotions into it; How dare you attack me! I never did anything to you! *BANG* Feel my wrath!. It’s weird but not uncommon; dogs think all other animals are dogs too (which is why they find horses so scary yet attractive), and I spent a few years in high school sitting next to a friend of mine who tried to make his pencilcase open and close itself (he claimed he was kidding, but honestly who was he kidding).
Anyway, I found the hurt-non-living things very fitting to how I felt about the mirror in my parents bedroom this evening.
I have a date (it’s not really a date actually: the date is on Sunday but we decided that we should have a pre-date get together so that we can see if we scare each other to death… and seeing that he’s the cuter one, with “we” I mean “I” and with “each other” I mean “him”) in exactly 1 hour and 45 minutes and my face looks puffy, my hair like crap and my clothes look funny. And while I’m standing in front of the mirror, being absolutely convinced the guy I have a date with is going to run off screaming, I can’t help but think at the mirror:
“Traitor! We bought this place you know! You’d be nothing without us! MAKE ME LOOK LIKE ORLANDO BLOOM!”
Guess what, didn’t work. Anyhoo, wish me good luck.