Hypothetically Speaking . . .

. . . . . . . . Because Humor Matters

I Fully Admit To Having A Problem…Kind Of

Written By: Michael Rochelle - May• 25•11

Umm, maybe I don't need any more clothes.

Some say that the first step to solving any problem or addiction is to acknowledge that you have one. Well, if I’m allowed to be completely honest, I think that I may have a teeny weenie problem when it comes to spending. I was going to use the word “shopping,” but spending seems manlier. And we all know that my sole purpose in life is to be more manly. I mean, I didn’t grow these three hairs on my chest for nothing. You should see the way I have them slicked down today. Very macho, if I may say so myself. I used a little bit of gel. You just never know when you’ll have to rip your shirt off during a board meeting to get your point across. It’s happened twice today already.

Anyway, back to the shopping thing. There is just something magical about a crisp, brand new shirt that makes my hand automatically reach for my wallet. In fact, I can be strolling along the aisles, minding my own business when some random shirts will start calling me by name. They say, “Buy me, Michael. You know you need me.” “No, I don’t,” I reply. “Yes you do!” they scream back. That’s when the fight begins, and I somehow find myself arguing loudly with a shirt in the middle of a store. Before I even realize what has happened, the shirt utters those three little words, “I’m on sale,” and, instinctively, I find myself dashing towards the checkout counter with shirt in hand—and a few other things I grabbed along the way. I mean, who can deny the allure of having a sixth bottle of black shoe polish?

It probably doesn’t help that I live across the street from both Target and Kohl’s. In fact, when I found out how close my apartment complex was to the stores, I practically signed the lease without even seeing the apartment. “I’ll take it,” I yelled as I entered the rental office for the first time. “But we haven’t even told you the price yet,” the leasing agent responded. “Don’t worry about it. There are three Starbucks cafes across the street. Here’s a blank check. Write down any amount you feel is appropriate,” I said gleefully as I skipped out of the office, across the parking lot, and over to where I knew happiness could be bought for the cost of a mocha latte and a new pair of shoes. Don’t judge me. I was born this way.

One of the first signs that I had a problem should have been obvious when others would ask me to go shopping with them just for the company and I’d end up leaving the store with more bags than they did. No lie, the other day a co-worker left with only 2 shirts while I left with 8—ok 12. The second sign should have been when I noticed that every time I ran into one of my neighbors, I had shopping bags in my hand. He’d even helped me take them up the stairs on a few occasions. Have you ever tried explaining to a level-headed person why it is that you need 35 pairs of jeans? Well, I have, and I wouldn’t recommend it. It even got so bad that I would park my car, look around for him, and then dash up the steps with my bags when I was sure the coast was clear. I know. I’m a mess, right?

Well, my point is that I’m acknowledging that I may kind of have a little problem. Hmmm. Maybe problem is too strong of a word. How about opportunity? I have the opportunity to spend less moving forward. Matter of fact, I’m going to start right this second. Now is as good a time as any, right? I tell you, I’m through with spending money. Believe me. I’m not going to spend another red cent—ever! Oh wait a minute. The mailman’s here. Let’s see. Cable bill. Light bill. And—oh my goodness! You aren’t going to believe this. Kohl’s is having a sale! 30% off everything when you use your Kohl’s credit card with the 99.9% interest rate. What a deal! Uh, I’ll be right back. I’m going to Kohl’s. I can always start saving tomorrow, which is just as good a day as any.

Moving right along, I have some good news. Contrary to this time last week when someone erroneously guessed that I was at least 35, today someone guessed that I was 20. 20!!! It was as if I had won an award. In fact, here’s an excerpt from the speech I gave in the middle of the break room: First of all, I’d like to thank all of those that have made this moment possible. Thanks to the academy. My mom. My dad. My cosmetic surgeon who so willingly squeezed me in for that emergency face-lift over the weekend. Thanks to my backup cosmetic surgeons. My therapist. Where would I be without you? Oh, and my backup therapists. This moment is so much bigger than me. Without you all, I’d be nothing. Words can’t even begin to express my gratitude. I graciously and humbly accept the compliment and I will be forever in your debt. Thank you. Good night. And God bless.

In other news, a wise man once said that happiness and success can be found in the oddest of places. Yes, that wise man was me. Well, I was minding my own business at work the other day when, all of a sudden, a brand new chair was delivered to my desk—and no, I didn’t buy it. Because I’ve worked a few jobs where I’d been forced to make one paper clip and three staples last for six months, I asked if they were delivering the chair to the right place. I wasn’t used to such luxuries. I didn’t feel worthy. The chair looked just like one of the ones surrounding the table on “The Celebrity Apprentice.” I immediately envisioned myself doing deals with Donald Trump and making recommendations on who to fire solely based on my having an executive chair.

It’s funny how something so simple can make you feel so important. It was as if I’d finally been promoted to janitor. I began doing my work with a renewed sense of empowerment. I even began asking people to address me as sir. “That’s Mr. Rochelle to you,” I said to a few coworkers who didn’t recognize that I was the proud owner of an executive chair and was thus privy to that level of respect. Unfortunately, I may have taken it just a little too far when I demanded that my manager address me as Your Highness. Seeing that he was a little uncomfortable with that, I informed him that I would find it acceptable for him to call me Your Majesty instead. I’ll have you know that I was successful in getting him to call me a different name. I am now referred to as suspended. I’ll let you know what he calls me once security allows me back on the premises in 3 days.

In closing news, as much as technology was designed to bring us together, it is with great displeasure that I announce that it is probably doing more to tear us apart. After 30-plus years of only having one line because she felt more than that was unnecessary and wasteful, somehow Verizon convinced my mother to get call waiting. Up until then, she didn’t care what calls she missed, but now call waiting is her best friend. Since she got the service, our calls have gone as follows:

“Hello.”

“Hey, Mom, it’s Mike.”

“Wait a minute, Mike. I have another call.”

Before I can give any form of acknowledgement, she clicks over.

Five minutes later, she comes back on the line.

“Mike, I have to go. I need to take this other call.”

“But, Mom, I’m in the emergency room. My arm fell off.”

“That’s nice, sweetheart. I’ll have to call you back.”

Click.

She still has yet to return my call. That noted, if anyone sees or hears from my mother, could you please tell her that I need to talk to her. I mean, I know that her bill collectors are important, but if she could just once choose talking to her son over talking to them just once, I’d really appreciate it.

Michael Rochelle
Access my full blog: http://www.justmichael.net/blog
Access my website: http://www.mikeyllo.com
Add me on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/michael.rochelle1

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One Comment

  1. Shawn Bonner says:

    I know it has been a while, but three in the same month? Wow! Keep it up. I can always use a good laugh. I think we need to get you a power of attorney and cut up your credit cards. Stay out of Kohl’s! Repeat after me, “I don’t need anymore clothes. Nothing is in season or out of season.” Maybe as a torture, we can have you wear fitted jeans and tight polo shirts everywhere with rainbow colored Nikes lol. Take care Michael.

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