LeBron James Doesn't Cut his Own Steak: What would you have people do for you?
Here's my top ten:
1. Put my four year old to sleep.
Last night my wife told our oldest son that now that he's four years old he has to go to bed by himself. He said, "I'll just stay three then."
Getting him to sleep is the most time-consuming part of the day that I have no control over. (Also, at times the most rewarding. But I don't know that it would be any less rewarding if, say, three nights a week I had an official get the kid to sleep helper.)
A few nights ago we came home a bit later than normal and both of our boys, ages four and one, fell asleep in their car seats.
My wife and I were positively giddy. Seriously, it was like spring break at Cancun.
What were we going to do with all the free time?
It was just 8:45!
The possibilities were endless.
What. Would. We. Do!
We made popcorn and watched "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills."
2. Get my emissions tested.
For some reason the state of Tennessee -- one of the least green states in the union -- requires you to get a yearly emissions test on your car in order to receive your yearly registration sticker.
One of these emissions testing facilities is near a factory so you can literally sit in your car and watch pollution rising in to the heavens while you choke on the car exhaust of the car in front of you waiting to pass emissions.
And here's the deal, it's impossible not to pass emissions if your car has been made since after World War II.
Why do I have to spend the time doing this?
I'd have an emissions tester.
3. Make telephone calls to either AT&T or Comcast when billing errors occur.
Over Christmas my parents got new cell phones. And my dad got the first cell phone of his life. As part of this tremendous accomplishment, both of them were added to my cell phone bill as part of the family plan.
My mom told me this should add $20 to my monthly bill.
Instead the first month it added $150.
But here's the deal, have you ever been on the phone with your cable or cell phone provider trying to rectify an error?
It's as if we suddenly gave the Taliban control of our cable and cell phone companies.
It takes 45 minutes to actually get a live person on the phone line and then it's like a CIA interrogation if the CIA interrogator was both a. an idiot and b. incapable of speaking English.
The last time I tried to change my plan I had to answer like three security code questions, none of which I knew the answer to.
Who was my favorite teacher in elementary school? Jesus, I don't even know anymore. I might have known when I was 22 and I set up the damn security codes, but I'm 32 now. I can't even tell you what color shirt I'm wearing today without looking down.
What's my favorite movie?
Back in 2001?
God, I have no idea.
Titanic -- don't judge.
Sometimes I get off the phone with these companies and my bill actually increases the next time.
So I won't call.
And my wife won't call either.
We've actually gotten in fights over who has to call the cable or cell phone company.
It's just cheaper to be extorted. Which is probably what the Afghanis say about the Taliban. (Plus, I don't kill a night when my wife might be willing to sleep with me by pissing her off over calling about the cell phone bill).
4. Respond to my emails.
There was a time when I was really good at responding to emails.
Like ten seconds after you sent me an email I would respond to it. People would actually remark on how quickly I responded.
Back when I started the ClayNation column at CBS, I responded to every single reader, even the ones who wanted me to die.
I was the Rainman of email responses, a savant.
Sadly, those days have passed.
My emails pile up to the point where I occasionally wake up in bed at night and feel bad because I haven't responded to someone.
I still read them all -- generally on my iPhone -- but I'm awful at responding. I blame the fact that there are too many ways to get in touch with everyone now. Texts, email, Facebook, Twitter -- I have 500 unread Facebook messages I just won't even start on them.
And don't even get me started on people on Twitter who ask questions all the time like I'm their butler.
"What's the score of the game?"
If you can Tweet me this you can find the damn score out yourself.
So I need an email responder. Or a social media ninja.
5. Hang window treatments.
According to my wife all the windows in our house are ill, potentially near death.
That's the only reason I can understand for how I've spent thousands of dollars "treating" them. And by "treating them" I mean putting things in the window so people can't see in.
Recently my wife decided to hang a new curtain rod in the back window to keep people from being able to see our cupboards.
My job was to pull an old nail out of the wall.
The nail broke in the wall.
Which, according to my wife, is, to walls -- she's like a damn wall whisperer -- the rough equivalent of a human losing a leg.
So I don't need to be involved in this process at all.
6. Put in and remove car seats when we switch cars.
I know waterboarding terrorists is now illegal, but I would rather be waterboarded than have to take in and remove car seats all day long.
That's what we should do to presumed terrorists. Just make them put it and remove car seats all day until they break.
Especially if they had women standing over their shoulder saying, "No, you've got find the latch underneath the seat. Nope, that's not secure enough."
I'm picturing a terrorist flipping out:
"Hamid, I'm trying to find the clip! It's not there! Argghh! Okay, okay, we were going to put anthrax in the New York City water system. Call this guy, he lives above the sewer. Just please let me stop this."
7. Book airfares for me that cost less than $500.
You can't go anywhere for less than $500 anymore.
Not unless you're willing to book flights like two years in advance.
How did this happen?
Try to find an affordable airfare now.
The airlines blame the rising cost of fuel, but I don't buy that. Unless fuel is being made of diamonds now.
And I always feel like the time I'm spending trying to look for an affordable airfare actually ends up costing me more than just booking the most convenient flight.
(Plus, don't even get me started on how hard it is to get a decent boarding pass on Southwest. You haven't lived until your wife has had to sit with both kids by herself because you didn't get a good enough boarding pass).
8. Fix everything in the house that could possibly go wrong.
I can't fix anything. So I need a permanent fixer.
What's more, my wife blames me when things break around the house.
Like I wanted the fuse outside to stop working? Or the upstairs window to leak? Or the side gate to not latch?
I didn't make these things happen. Believe me, if I could make things happen, those would not be my first choices. (Since you're wondering, if I could make anything happen it would be x-ray vision so I could see through women's clothes. You bought those from Mad Magazine too, didn't you? If that's not happening then clearly I'm not making things happen.)
Rather than try to fix things and make them worse -- my friend Tardio recently tried to change the knob on his bathroom door, put it on backwards, and couldn't open the door any more, so he had to saw it open, really, this happened -- I just hire a handy man.
But is it incredibly emasculating to actually be at the house in the middle of the day while the handy man is doing odd jobs around the house?
But then I think -- hey, I'm working hard, it's not just anybody who can sit down in front of a computer screen and write an entire column about ten things I wish I could pay people to do -- this is hard work.
9. Kill my Linked In membership.
Seriously, how the hell did this company happen? That I'm drowning in Linked In emails all the time and I don't even understand what the purpose of the site is.
This is the first multi-billion dollar Internet company that actually has no value. Which is really saying something.
It makes Pets.com look like the most brilliant invention since the wheel.
Has anyone actually used Linked In in a beneficial manner?
I'm not hard to find, no one out there is thinking, this Clay Travis guy is such a recluse, I can never find him anywhere. How do you get in touch with him? I'm on the radio three hours a day, I have a web site, there's Twitter, and Facebook, and email and God knows what else.
My point is, no one is that hard to find anymore.
And if they are hard to find, does the fact that you know their butler make them more interested in talking to you?
I just find the entire concept of this business perplexing.
I need help with my taxes.
"Oh, I'm going to trust Joe Smith, one of his 4 billion contacts is my weedeater. If there's one guy I trust to be friends with only good accountants it's my weedeater. (Who he probably doesn't even know.) Sure, I'll let him do my taxes."
Hell, for all I know, Barry Diller could have sent me a message offering $100 million for OKTC and I didn't even get it. Or know I'd received the message.
The last five times I've been on Linked In I've tried to figure out how to leave, and I can't.
Linked In is like the Internet mafia, once you're in, you're in for life.
10. A specially designed Comcast remote that lets me scroll through On-Demand shows faster and works better on the DVR.
This is clearly a first world problem.
Why is there a lag on the DVR now when I'm watching sports? It didn't used to be that way. Now it is.
When I'm watching sports I want it to stop exactly where I stop it, not ten or fifteen seconds back from where I stopped it. Right now this is impossible. (Have y'all noticed this. If you're watching a basketball game, for instance, you stop the DVR when the team reaches the opposite side of the court, it takes you back to a free throw).
I should be on the Comcast committee to make remotes work better. I could do a great job on this committee.
I'm also not happy that every show currently made is available for me to watch on demand -- that's not good enough -- I want to be able to watch on-demand using all the fast-forward options available on my remote, not just normal speed or slightly above normal speed.
Okay, honestly, this is just is for Cinemax late night.
When I watch Cinemax on-demand late night I just want to get to the sex scenes faster.
And right now it takes forever.
Especially when the movie is like a hour and a half.
You expect me to sit through the same sex scenes I've already seen? But what if the next sex scene -- probably starring Heather VanDeven, who is like the Meryl Streep of soft-core porn -- is the best Cinemax has ever produced? And I don't see it?
My time is too valuable for that.
It's probably a good thing I'm not a hundred millionaire.