Once upon a time, in a faraway land of fantasy and feces, there lived a boy named Dustin. Dustin was a special young man who had a magical set of abilities that he used primarily to further his own agenda and profiteer off of his less-intelligent associates. Dustin wasn’t like any of the other boys in the forest (except anatomically — he had all of the standard parts that anyone would expect a fully-developed man to possess. The right amount of testicles and everything, nothing out of the ordinary). Oh yeah, Dustin lived in a forest, did I mention that yet? Well he did. Only it was a magical forest, because if you live in a non-magical forest, people judge you and automatically assume that you are weird and smelly, like a hippie. Dustin was neither weird, nor smelly, nor a hippie; and his forest was located in the heart of the most fun part of town, near where all the cool bars and clubs were, just walking distance from a nice park, and his forest had a kickass HDTV with killer reception and all the sports channels. Truly, the forest was a magical place, and Dustin was happy there because the girl-to-guy ratio was like 5 to 1 — and they were hot girls, too. Recent college grads, sorority girls, young professionals and a few underagers just to keep everything interesting.
One day, Dustin decided to leave the magical forest and see what else the world had to offer (besides, it wouldn’t be much of a story if Dustin just stayed in the forest the whole time). Normally if Dustin was going to leave the forest, he would’ve traveled using his magical phoenix, Phocus, but an evil wizard named Dui put a spell on him that prevented him from riding Phocus the Phoenix unless he obtained special high-risk insurance which was totally overpriced, you guys. But all was not lost, for Dustin heard tell of a magical beast named Falcore, whom some of his fellow knights used to travel long distances in order to spread good tidings across the land. Oh yeah, did I mention Dustin was a knight? Because he was definitely a knight. Reared under the tutelage of the greatest knight that the realm had ever seen, Sir Paul McCartney of the Fabulous Fortnights. The rumor was that Falcore — an ancient creature who was supposedly 300,000 miles old — could transport as many as 12 men safely inside his steel belly, all while traveling at speeds of up to 65 miles per hour (70 in some states).
Along with some of his cool knight buddies, Dustin traveled in Falcore to the magical land of Tennessee; a land stuck in an ancient time where women were not treated as equals and most of the men still secretly thought it was ok to own people, even if they didn’t say it out loud very often. It was like stepping into a painting of the past, only with bovine-smells and high gas prices. Upon arrival at their target (which was a Target, appropriately enough) Dustin and his fellow minstrels immediately set out to see what wrongs they could right, and how they could leave the mysterious place better than how they’d found it. Oh and Dustin is a minstrel now, if I didn’t mention that. And so are the guys in his posse. They’re all minstrels of rock, with some dance-punk and hip-hop influences. Five minstrels of dance-punk, hip-hop rock — with a sixth one foretold by the prophecies to meet up with them in time for tomorrow’s show. So anyway, these quintuple minstrels are all rocking it out like Guitar Hero set on “expert” in the parking lot of this Target, when what to their wondering eyes doth appear, but a magical bucket containing a substance that they had never previously seen in a bucket. It looked like excrement. Probably because it was excrement.
“You smell it,” said Sir Colonius to Sir Rigsby the Less.
“Nay mine brother, thou art the one what shalst be doing of the smelling. Let us make Sir Dustin the Lanky imbibe its odor most foul,” came his reply (oh yeah, they’re all knights again, by the way).
“But what if it befouls us with some sort of unforeseen enchantment,” said the great wizard, Frisstacular (ok, they were all knights except Frisstacular, who was a wizard of flames and sound mixers), “we cannot afford to lose a member of our troupe, nor pay the fees at Urgent Care.”
“Dudes,” came the reply of the group’s wisest elder, Sir Tim, “let’s just do some shots and get back on the road. Someone should twitter a picture of it, though.”
And with no one able to refute the unflappable logic of Sir Tim, the great minstrel-knight (they’re like these minstrels who rock, hard, but also get to carry swords and boss people around like knights…while rocking), that’s just what they did. Shot and picture taking commenced post haste, with everyone rejoicing at their discovery and conquest of the crapbucket. Having twittered all they could twitter, and unable to twitter any longer, the merry band of four minstrel-knights and a wizard set back upon their journey to experience new heights and explore new depths — all while promoting the virtues of peace, love and late-night drive-thrus to any who came across their path.
The moral of the story: if anyone tells you that you’ll be happier if you try to be more like someone else, or go someplace where you can start over and leave your past behind, it’s a bucket full of crap. You control your own happiness, and you need to accept what you are, where you are and who you are — rather than rely on external changes in your occupation, location, or circumstances to provide you with happiness, well-being or self-worth.
The end…is not the end.