Every man will face his own “What the hell am I doing?” moments.
Some, as they question their intelligence and purpose for existence. While they adjust the ornate belt on their white Elvis jumpsuit. While they fight the terror that the suit’s fit reveals more than the average passerby or coworker ought to know.
This was me, on Halloween, a few short years ago.
I stood in profile in the full-length mirror in the men’s room for my watershed moment. Should I switch from The King to The Guy Who Should Have Worn Something More Substantial Under His Costume?
The issue here isn’t embarrassment in the portrayal of The King, even in his more robust state. (I couldn’t pull off the young Elvis, I realize. I’m not … young.) When I strapped on the polyester Vegas duds and fluffed my hair for full effect, I became ready to roll, Elvis style.
My kids greeted me with moans and screams. Even the littlest one. Utter. Disapproval. Never mind that I’d serenaded them all those years with “Love Me Tender” and “Teddy Bear.”
My status as Cool Dad had taken a hit.
It happens to a lot of guys. A washed-up Johnny Unitas, suited up to play for the San Diego Chargers. Or old Michael Jordan, schlepping along with the Washington Wizards. Frankie Valli, singing way too far into disco and the 70s.
Or Elvis Pressley, gyrating in a white jumpsuit. Trying to figure out how to earn cool points back.
Our Halloween edition of Go Ask Daddy is less scary. Unless you’re a bank teller, radio listener or prone to ill effects from fiber overload.
1. How do they tell if a bill is counterfeit?
If Elvis or Johnny Unitas appears in place of Jackson or Jefferson, you might have a fake on your hands.
The U.S. Secret Service gives telltale signs of counterfeit bills on its website. It implores us, the American people, to practice due diligence to keep funny money out of circulation.
The real deal is sharp and distinct. They print American currency on special paper with red and blue fibers embedded. For bills bigger than $1 or $2, there’s tricky strip you can see inside the bill if you hold it up to light.
Money also feels different than regular paper. It shouldn’t feel like a post-it, for instance, or toilet paper. I am not familiar with the feel of cash, at least not on the order of Johnny Football.
2. You’re not allowed to head-butt in football?
Nope. Not even if you’re a party-hard, brash rookie who has done nothing but rub air money between your fingers and roll like a pimp in Vegas.
Like many things in life, it depends on what the referee sees. Take this play in a Georgia vs. South Carolina game.
The NFL begins each season with a ‘point of emphasis’ that it won’t tolerate helmet-to-helmet contact. The first couple of games in the season, if a helmet grazes a helmet, flags fly. By midseason, it’s hit (ha!) or miss.
By the Super Bowl, helmet hits by Seahawks defensive players on defenseless Broncos receivers in the most ridiculous setting for an NFL title game go virtually unnoticed.
No, I’m not bitter.
3. How does AutoTune work?
Better than NFL referees, I hope. (Let’s face it, officials of all kinds give me hives and thyroid spasms. How badly do I have it? I won’t even go to Sports Clips because the women who cut your hair there wear referee shirts. I just can’t trust their eyesight with scissors.
As Grace says when she finds herself in trouble – nobody’s perfect!
This is where AutoTune comes in. Through something known as signal processing, producers can correct even MY voice. Every note makes a sound wave. The frequency determines the pitch. Producers kept AutoTune software around to tweak the occasional stinker note in the studio.
Then, someone left it out and Cher found it. This might have well been the day the music really did die.
4. Can you have the same license plate as someone in another state?
Yes. So, #$!-A-Ref could appear in all 50 states. Guam, too.
Because every state’s database is separate, you could have a, I don’t know, J-Law&E plate in North Carolina. Or PizzaMe.
And someone else could have one in Florida.
And a third in Arkansas.
There are some clever ones out there, though. Check these out. (If you Google ‘cool vanity plates,’ make sure safe search is active. The more you know.
: – D (This one exists in North Carolina, for real.)
EW-ABUG (On a green Volkswagen bug in Hawaii)
And, on a Cincinnati Bengals Ohio vanity plate, the grand prize … PHKPIT. Take that, Pittsburgh.
5. What happens if you eat raw oats?
You’ll sound like Cher on crack.
Livestrong.com says it’s OK. Which is cool, because isn’t that Lance Armstrong’s site? And he’d give it to us straight. Right? The thing is, that’s a lot of fiber. And fiber has … effects. I thought I was all healthy when I ate a Fiber One bar and I felt like my innards morphed into a hot air balloon.
Cook a cup of oats, and it’s good for 166 calories, 28 grams of carbs, 4 grams of fiber – about 16% of what you should have in a day. Eat that same cup of oats raw, and you’re talking 307 calories, 55 grams of carbs and eight grams of fiber.
That’s a third of your daily allowance!
And I just realized I’m railing on against … fiber.
FiberDad on my license plate?
Not a good look.