New Clothes Season

New Clothes Season

Dear Diary …

Now that we’re all knee deep in Back to School I can say this … there is never a good time to wear new clothes. Especially as an adult.

We recently did a little outlet mall run for some Back to School shopping, but I of course did a little shoppin’ for myself to celebrate back to … uh … Tuesday or wherever. Look … when you go to the outlet malls sometimes you’re just legally obligated to buy certain things.

We went into Old Navy to look for some stuff for my son and there right in front of me was a pair of shorts … in my size … for $8. And maybe you don’t agree, but I believe you HAVE to buy $8 shorts when they are presented to you. That’s like practically free. For $8 they’re borderline disposable shorts that you could wear for a week and then throw in the garbage.

Anyway … I buy the $8 shorts and a pile of other stuff at a couple different stores and then I immediately face the dilemma … When do you actually wear this stuff?

The temptation is to just wear it the very next day. It’s new. You’re excited to have new stuff. It’s … CLEAN and you probably don’t wanna do laundry. But I always feel like the biggest dork in the world if I wear it the next day. To me, I feel no different than “Concert T-shirt Guy” who goes to a concert, buys a t-shirt at the merch counter, and then IMMEDIATELY puts it on and walks around. Yup … here at the concert … provin’ that I’m at the concert!

And when you have new clothes, the next day everybody you see makes you feel like a dork too … “Oh look at you! Somebody got new clothes!” Oh Lord.

But … if I wait … well then I feel stupid too. I got these new clothes I’m all excited about and they’re just sittin’ there while I wear some dumb polo that’s a couple years old. And I blame other people. One …. Because as we’ve all learned in society and social media … nobody actually blames THEMSELVES for anything. Blah! That’s just dumb! And two … it is everyone else’s fault because now they say, “Oh did you just get new clothes?”

Nah … I got ‘em a while back but this is my first time wearing them.

“First time?? What’s wrong with you??? What are you waitin’ for???”

And that brings up the real lesson of today … other people are annoying. They’re just the worst. Always around … doin’ stuff and talkin’ or just … you know … existing.

Now I of course don’t mean YOU, person listening to this right now. I mean OTHER people. Man I love that loophole. “Well you don’t mean ME right?”

NOOOO!!! Other people!!! Never you!!!

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye.

Your Fancy Sausage

Dear Diary …

I never want to be that guy that turns into the stereotypical Dad that stomps around the house yelling, “You kids today … you don’t understand the value of the dolla! You’re always wasting my money!” … That guy is lame.

At the same time, “You kids today … you don’t understand the value of the dolla! You’re always wasting my money!” … Now of course the difference is I’m doing it in this segment on the radio and online … hip, cool, NEW … stereotypical Dad. So … like … um … yeah!

But you know what? I still wear my pants in the normal spot on my waistline and I still know who Post Malone is, so ain’t totally lame … but a fact is a fact, and man a family sure can plow through money sometimes, can’t they?

The one the always gets me is there’s always something that’s ridiculously expensive, that EVERYBODY in the family houses and just wants more, more, more! For us, it’s these breakfast sausages. And I know what you’re thinking, “Breakfast sausages? Ain’t Jimmy Dean’s super cheap?”

Why yes … yes they are, but they don’t eat Jimmy Dean’s. They gotta have [fancy voice] Applegate Farms organic chicken and maple sausage … and those things cost six bucks for a box. And not a box of 300 sausages … a box of 10 … and those 10 are way closer to cocktail weenie size than they are to big ol’ sausage size.

So needless to say … the family plows thru a box about every four days. “Can you get more sausage at store?” Good lord I’m gonna need a raise just to keep the family full of sausages.

I mean … $6 every four days for an entire year. That’s 91 boxes a year for $547 … in SAUSAGE! I mean … If I bought $500 of Netflix stock 10 years ago … It would be worth $26,000, but instead … it’s SAUSAGE!!

Man why can’t they like the cheap stuff? Why do they have to be all, “We want good quality and things that are better for us.” Things were so much easier back in the day when we thought Kool-Aid had vitamins in it.

And you know what? Even when the stuff is cheap, that doesn’t really matter, because then they just waste it. My kids like to eat marshmallows sometimes for dessert. Now marshmallows … yeah … they’re a dollar. So I’m cool with that. But what I am not cool with is when they open a bag of marshmallows, get their little dessert, and then the next morning what do I find sitting in the pantry? An open bag of marshmallows … sucking in all of the air of the world and turning into hard little sugar rocks. Thanks a lot you little jerks!

But they don’t care, cuz it ain’t their money. That’s why everything they own, they break. Cuz you’re the dummy that has to replace it.

Well you know what? I am gonna hike my pants up to my nipples and waddle around complaining about this … and you can’t stop me! Then I’m going to shout “You kids today!” … and I’m gonna sit in my old Lazy Boy recliner … fart … and fall asleep with the news on whether you like it or not!

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye.

You Can’t Defeat the Map

Dear Diary …

Now I will start by saying that I LOVE the technology we have to help map out your car trips … give you directions … let you know where the Po-po are hiding … all that stuff is great. That said, I got beef with the whole “estimated arrival time” because it’s one big fat hairy lie.

Man … back in the day when these map programs were suckier … it was great. The thing would tell you it was gonna take six hours to make your trip, and then you could put the pedal to the metal and make up like 45 minutes of time and totally get there way earlier. Now? This things are too dang precise and it is flippin’ impossible to get ahead of their estimated time. It just KNOWS. Even if I drive fast … it still somehow just KNOWS that I was gonna drive fast and had already factored that into the time.

So now the only thing it does is have you make WORSE time. If you stop to pee … forget it … now you’ve lost 10 minutes that you’ll never get back. Get gas? Yup. That’s another ten. And traffic? Yup … traffic is another lost cause.

And I take issue with the traffic one because the map robot should already know about the traffic … so why isn’t it factored into the time in the first place? You get my hopes up that I’m gonna be there in 20 minutes … next thing I know you’re adding another 20 minutes because traffic and I’m stuck in some sort of never ending loop of “estimated arrival time” sadness.

Again … the robot should already know about this delay … why is he tacking it on now to make me sad? I just wanna make good time … that’s the most important part of the road trip … even more important than whatever the heck you’re doing when you get there. If I don’t make good time, then the whole thing is a failure!

Moving on Diary … How is it that children manage to destroy themselves in such a short amount of time? I know it becomes cliche to dismiss a parent when they say, “But I only turned around for two seconds,” but that truly is all the time it takes for a child to ruin everything.

I recently had to take my son to an event at my daughter’s school … So we get out of the car and get ready to walk over. I turn my head for TWO SECONDS and I look back and my son is face down on the ground and his pants are ripped.

How does this happen do quickly? Actually … how does this happen AT ALL? I could throw myself on the ground a hundred times in a row and I’m pretty sure my pants would still not be ripped. Meanwhile we’re just trying to walk from a car to a stairwell and he looks I threw him in the lion’s cage at the circus.

Is it just the makeup of their DNA that a child sees you look away and instinctively they have the urge to just fling themselves off a table, or smash something on the ground, or whatever? “Oh … he’s not looking … DESTROY!”

And it’s the same lousy story every time … “I didn’t do ANYTHING!” Yeah, you’re right. You didn’t do anything. Must’ve been that Pants Monster again, attacking innocent children to feed off of pieces of their fabric. I’m sure that’s what happened.

Is it that hard to just stand there? Clearly it is.

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye

Variety Pack Is Whack

Dear Diary …

They say “variety is the spice of life.” Well if that is the case, then I’m here to declare that I don’t want any spices. Now don’t get me wrong … I like variety for some stuff … different foods, different vacations, sleepin’ with random people … wait … what? Kidding!

But seriously … variety is fine for some things, but when it comes to those variety packs at the store. I hate ‘em. I want ‘em gone.

Diary … my son plays soccer. So as any parent knows if they have a kid in an activity, you gotta take turns being on snack duty. Cool. No problem.

So this week we were on snack duty, and I wanna get some little bags of chips for the kids, and darnit if every single one of the packs at the store is a cursed variety pack. This is a disaster!

“But why Zack? That just means the kids have all different ones to choose from.”

Oh yeah? You ever been anywhere where there just so happens to be exactly three kids that pick cool ranch Doritos, and exactly three that pick Sun Chips, and then four that pick plain potato chips? Yeah … I didn’t think so!

I’ll tell you what flavor kids want … whatever flavor you don’t have enough of. This is why children don’t get choices. Because the minute they do, they all fight over the same three bags of Cheetos.

And even if there aren’t other kids involved, the variety pack is useless at home too because there’s always some flavor none of your kids ever wants. (Plain Lays potato chips I’m looking at you.)

I mean … my kids want strawberry yogurt in those stupid little tubes. Strawberry. That’s it. But do they sell strawberry? Of course not! They packet it with something awful like strawberry-banana. Ugh.

Why are we pushing banana flavored anything on people? Nobody wants it … it’s gross … and it makes everything taste like tangy medicine. Somebody’s gettin’ kickbacks from the Chiquita banana people for sure.

I don’t want variety pack anything. Nor do I really want mixed variety anything. Think of a jar of nuts … what do you invariably end up with? A bunch of stupid plain peanuts and those big dumb Brazil nuts that suck all the moisture out of your mouth.

How did that Brazil nut ever make the cut for mixed nut consideration in the first place? We couldn’t find a better nut to put in there? You know … just because something is edible, doesn’t mean we HAVE to eat it.

Till next time Diary .. I say … Goodbye.

Zack’s Anger Diary: The Two Worst Phrases In the World

Dear Diary …

When it comes to raising my kids, there are two phrases I hate more than anything else … and they are “No I won’t” and “I didn’t mean to.”  And the main reason is because each time these phrases are used by my kids, it’s at a time when they have no clue what they are talking about in the first place.

Here’s a recent example of both …

The other day my daughter was roller skating in the house.  Yes Diary … that is correct … roller skating in the house.  So as you can already see … a terrible idea thought up by a child  who has no idea what they are talking about.  But really … what are you gonna do?  I try to police them as much as I can, but that gets EXHAUSTING by the end of the day, so fine … you win … roller skate in the house.  Just listen to me on this one thing … please do not roller skate in the kitchen.  You will fall.  You will hit your head on the hard tile floor. And you will hurt yourself.

“No I won’t!”

Well I know you won’t do it on purpose, but just trust me on this, you could fall and hurt yourself.

“No I won’t!”

Diary … I’ll give you one guess what happens next.


I told you.

And yet somehow … they never learn that I might actually know what I’m talking about.

Fast forward to phrase two … My son decides he would like to eat a bowl of marshmallows and chocolate syrup on the coach.

(Again … I told you … I’m TIRED by the end of the day … and I’ve given up.)

So all I ask … Diary … is that he please eat them with a spoon so he won’t spill.  But does he listen to me?  Of course not … I’m a moron!

So he takes a fork, and the promptly drops a bunch of sticky, gooey, chocolately marshmallows into the crevices of my couch.

“But I didn’t mean to!”

Yes … I know it was not your plan to screw up, but maybe if you were a little more careful in the first place, WE WOULDN’T BE GOING THROUGH THIS RIGHT NOW!!!

And as you can see … these two phrases often go hand in hand.  I give helpful advice … they say “no I won’t” … they screw up … and then they say “I didn’t mean to!”

Kids … I’m gonna tell you something you’re probably not going to listen to, but I’m going to tell you anyway … Your parents … GASP … occasionally know what they’re talking about.

You’re nine years old (Or six or 14 or whatever) … you don’t know anything.  Heck … I’m 40 and I barely feel like I know anything.  But the point is … we’ve actually lived through some things and have already bashed our heads on the kitchen floor enough times that we’re just trying to prevent you from giving yourself a concussion from doing something stupid.

This is gonna hurt, but you  … might need to listen to us from time to time.

Or just go bash your head on the kitchen floor …but quit crying about it … your tears are annoying!

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye

Three Bags o’ Bread

Dear Diary …

Every night of my life, I’m in a battle. So basically this is a non-stop war … Me vs. the sheet on my bed. Every single night when I go to bed, that sheet is where it’s supposed to be. And every single morning when I wake up, the stinkin’ corner of the sheet has been ripped out of the bed and my toes are sticking out. Every night!

It doesn’t matter how hard I yank that sheet and how deeply I stuff it down into that corner, that stupid thing is flappin’ all around come morning. And you would think it’s not that big a deal .. it’s fine if your toes are just touching blanket instead of sheet. But no … it’s not fine! It’s not fine on any level!!

I don’t know why it’s a big deal, but it just feels all weird and wrong on my feet and I’m not as comfortable if I have blanket toe instead of sheet toe.

What happens every single night to cause this? Am I flopping around the bed like some sort of fish out of water? Or is there a more devious plan at hand … some sort of sheet conspiracy between my bed and this evil evil sheet?

As you can imagine … I’m going with the conspiracy, cuz that’s way less my fault and way more me blaming the sinister forces of the evil sheet and it’s catastrophic plan to ruin my night’s sleep.

I don’t really have anything else to add … and I have no solutions to the problem either … so I’m just here complaining about it. What the heck goes on with our bodies in the middle of the night, and why are they so stupid and uncooperative?

OK … moving on Diary …

Speaking of wars … I’m in another one in my house … this time with the family. Yeah … as you can see I got a lot of battles going on, but that’s the price you pay when you’re doing it right and everybody else is doing it wrong.

And in this situation, I know without a shadow of a doubt, I’m in the right and everybody else is doing it wrong.

The rule at hand is simple … If you open a package of something … let’s say a loaf of bread. You eat that loaf of bread until it’s gone, then you start on a new package of bread. Right?

Well apparently not in my house, because right now I’m starting at THREE different loaves of bread. All the same brand … all the same kind … and all three of them are open. This is not how this is supposed to work!!!

My kids in particular drive me crazy with this. Every single time I bring a new package of something into the house, they wanna immediately open it before the current package is empty.

“Daddy I want the new milk.”

Absolutely not! This other milk is like two days old. It’s not as if I’m asking you to drink month old milk. You finish the open one first, then you move on!

But guess who listens to me? Yup … nobody.

Nobody listens. They never do. Sigh.

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye

Don’t Move My Cheese

Dear Diary …

You know … I must just be different than everybody else on the planet. I mean, of course there’s that whole, “Oh we’re all different in our own special way” … that whole thing. But what I’m learning in particular is that I must not want stuff in the same place as any other human in my life.

Every single morning when I get to work … stuff is ALL over the place. All the settings for the radio station are changed. All my buttons are tweaked and messed with. All my computer screens are facing in weird directions. Pretty much everything is changed.

Now … as best I know … nobody around here does anything drastically different with this studio. And yet … they’re tweakin’ more than a meth head dyin’ for a fix.

Then … I go home … furniture is all over the place. Stuff is just in the middle of the floor. And remotes for the TV? God knows where those things are. When I use them, I put them on the armrest of the chair I’m sitting in. Plain and simple.

When the children use them … As best I can tell it is their mission to make sure the things are hidden as much as humanly possible so nobody else can change it away from their God awful YouTube channels they watch.

Of course … now that I think about it … maybe I’m the weirdo since I’m the one who wants things a different way. Everybody else in my life probably says, “Curse you Zack Jackson … you moved all our stuff again!” Yeah … well … too bad!! I ain’t changing!!

Moving on Diary …

As anyone with children knows, you are asked to wear many different hats in your day … parent, spouse, friend, advisor, etc. But in the eyes of your children, the single most important hat you wear each day is simple … person who goes and gets them snacks. Every day. As many times as possible.

To them, you are merely an extension of the kitchen pantry, and you should be available to deliver delicious snacks into their tiny little devil mouths on demand, whenever their little bellies desire.

And here’s my favorite shenanigan …

“Daddy … when you get get up, can you get me some Goldfish?”

Yeah, sure, I can do that when I get up.

Which of course is then immediately followed up ten seconds later with …

“Daddy … when are you getting up? I said I wanted Goldfish!!!”

Oh pardom me, my Liege! And if you’re lucky enough to have more than one child, you can be rest assured that they will never ever coordinate their snack demands. The second you return with Goldfish … “Ooooh … can I have Goldfish too?” GAHHHHH!!!!!!

And God forbid you tell them to get their own snacks.

“But I just sat down!”

Oh … my bad Your Highness. I forgot that the Royal Legs are to be worshipped much more than these sad old sticks your servant calls legs. Where’s my butler uniform? I might as well at least look the part if I’m gonna be treated this way!

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye.

The Pickiest of Picky Eaters

Dear Diary …

Picky eaters. I just can’t.

What happened here anyway? What makes God decide he’s gonna create one human with a well-rounded palate  … who can eat and enjoy all the great foods of the world … and then the next person … chicken tender boy.

My daughter is person #1 … she’ll eat just about anything. It’s great.

My son is person #2 … the most annoying palate on the planet. And he takes it one step further, because somehow he manages to have magical powers when it comes to food. And what I mean by this, Diary, is that he can declare that he doesn’t like the taste of something before he even puts it in his mouth. Yup … food never touches his lips, but somehow the Great Houdini already knows it tastes bad.

This weekend we make the kids some muffins. Now in the past when we make muffins, my son basically just eats the powdered sugar off the top and then leaves the rest of delicious muffin to waste away into the sadness of the trashcan. But this time I think I have the answer!

He says he wants cinnamon muffins, so I buy these ones that are like a cinnamon swirl … so they have the crumbly sugary awesomeness on the top that every five year old wants to eat, but also the same deliciousness is swirled in and around the entire muffin. This is perfect … Now he gets his favorite diabetes-laden part swirled all throughout the muffin!

So I pull them out of the oven and they look fantastic. OK … at least I think they look fantastic, because Mr. Stink Face tells a different story. Tappin’ his tiny little judgemental finger on the top of the muffin … “These look different than the other muffins.”

Yes … they look different because they ARE different. This has more of all the things you like. So it’s different, but it’s better.

“I don’t like them.”

You haven’t even tried them.

“They taste funny.”

YOU HAVEN’T EVEN TAKEN A BITE!!! How would you know they taste funny???

Picky eating is one thing … I can work with that. Jerky eating is another.

One night I can give that kid a meal and he’ll eat the whole thing. Next time I serve the exact same meal … “I don’t like this” … YOU LOVED IT THE LAST TIME I MADE IT AND IT’S EXACTLY THE SAME!!!

I think he’s just messing with me. I leave the house and he probably makes himself a giant kale salad to eat when nobody’s watching, that way when I get home he’s full and can freely screw with my head for his own torturous enjoyment.

And how dumb are we as parents where we sit here and try to get them to eat food that isn’t even that good for them? I can’t believe I now say things like “You need to eat two more bites of pizza, and then you can have dessert.”

That right son, please take two more bites of your non-nutritious dinner so I can then reward you with an equally non-nutritious dessert.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again … we need to change the way we try to get information from terrorists. We don’t need to physically torture them anymore. Just force them to deal with a difficult five year old for one day and they’ll be singing to the rooftops with all the information you could possibly want.

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye.

The Last Minute Snack

Dear Diary …

I make most of the meals in the house, and I’m cool with that. This is not where I’m gonna complain about being the chef of the family. I am the chef of the family! And how else am I gonna get more Instagram followers if I let somebody else in my family steal my food porn picture opportunities?

Here’s what I do have a problem with … when I am preparing one of my award-winning meals (all awards selected by me for the “International Zack Jackson Awards” by the way), what I don’t want happening is two minutes before dinner is ready to be served to hear the rumbling around in the pantry of my little rugrat children.

What are you doing in there?

“Getting a snack”

No snacks! We’re about to eat dinner.

“But I’m hungry!”

Good! We are eating in two minutes.

“But I’m hungry right now!”

Well then you’re gonna have to wait 120 agonizing seconds and then there will be food on the table. By the time you stop whining and walk to the table, it’s gonna be there.

“But I’m sooooooo hungry right now.”

Fine … starve!!! Let’s sit here for the next two minutes and see if you wither away into a nutritionless cloud of hunger.

Children are such liars with their hunger. Because what happens next? They get to the dinner table, eat one little mouse bite of something and say, “I’m full. Can I have dessert?”

If you’re full, then you don’t need dessert.

“I’m just full of dinner.”

You’re full of something else actually you liar.

Moving on Diary … since we’re talking about kids … can somebody please explain to me the fascination with bunny ears?

Why do kids think this is funny? Just standing there behind you makin’ bunny ears on your head. We’re not even taking a picture …. And they’re still doing it?

Bunny ears is an amazing study of times never changing. I did it as a kid. My parents did it as a kid. George Washington probably did it to his friends as a kid. And here they are still doing it today.

How do they learn to do it in the first place? And who was that very first person to say … “Hey I’m gonna make it look like you have bunny ears by using my fingers.”

Oh dude … that is legendary comedy! People are gonna be doing this for hundreds of years!!!

I mean … why didn’t it go away like MySpace or saying “on fleek?”

And why do my kids never … ever … get sick of it even though nobody else finds it even remotely funny?

Till next time Diary, I say … Goodbye

The War At Home

Dear Diary …

We are at war. And I don’t mean in the world or anything with terrorism or politics or whatever … this war is much closer to home. Actually, this war is IN the home … because it is a war between parents and children. And if I’m being honest … we parents are losing.

We’re not in control. We may act like we are and say things like, “I’m the parent and I’m in charge,” but those are merely the false claims of a desperate soul who’s trying to trick their enemy into believing them. It ain’t true.

The main reason we are losing is because children are masters of psychological warfare. We might be bigger and stronger, but mentally, they are destroying us.

Take my son for example. Right now he has to take an antibiotic two times a day, every day, for … I’m pretty sure … ever. Forever. OK not forever, but it certainly feels that way because every … single … time … he has to take it, he stalls … and stalls … and stalls.

“Oh I’ll do it in a minute.”

“Oh I have a headache … I need to wait.”

“Oh I can’t breathe … hang on a second.”

“I can’t breathe” is my favorite one so far. What does it even mean? It’s sort of like when liar kids say “I can’t eat any of my dinner because I’m so full … can I have a giant bowl of ice cream now?”

So every single dose of medication is an agonizing 30 minutes of psychological warfare that I lose. When he finally does agree to take the medication, he proceeds to take it in the TINIEST little … slurp … sips. It’s one teaspoon of medicine. It would be gone in two seconds if he just swallowed it all.

But nooooo … instead … let’s turn it into 37 agonizing … slurp … sips of torture.

And here’s where the psychological warfare mastermind is truly evident. One night this weekend he stayed at grandma’s house. She had to give him his meds. And he took them. All at once. With no delays.


Cuz he ain’t at war with grandma? That’s why.

He’s at war with ME.

I’m tellin’ ya … parents … we’re losing.

“No we arent! We’re in charge!”

Yeah … said the group of people who cut the crust off sandwiches, and try to arrange carrots into weird shapes and designs in some sort of pathetic effort to get our kids to eat them.

And heaven forbid you give them something like a granola bar and … gasp! … it breaks in half before they can eat it!!!

Forget it. Game over. “I can’t eat this … it’s broken!”

But it tastes the same …

“Silence peon!!! It’s broken!!! Get back in there and bring me another!”

Which you do. Don’t lie! You do it cuz you’re losing.

It’s OK … you can finally just admit that you’re losing the war. Just take a deep breath and feel good about the fact that some day some evil little spawn is gonna rise up and put THEM in their place too. Hooray karma!!!

Till next time Diary … I say … Goodbye.