Where does the good go

Dawn’s totally cheerleader end of the year gratitude journal

What started out as a joke, some five years ago, has become one of my favorite end of the year exercises.

Clareified person of the year!

I liked my comprehensive thank yous that I did last year, but it was too hard and cumbersome to repeat. I do want to thank Pdov, Pearatty, Mayor Pearatty, Cee, Notoriouslig, Vero, Probably April, Not @Jnassi, @astinto, Chilly, @heitmosa, Pi, KJ, The Jakes, Rick Blaine, Grange95, The Cider Fraud, Angela, and Vince for hosting me at their homes or taking me out for awesome meals and/or drinks throughout the year. Thanks to Mary for not ever stabbing me in my sleep, though she had more than ample opportunity and cause. Thanks to Fisch for staking me through my poker slump and being my mom’s IT guy. To Kaz for a delicious homecooked meal and helping to build Sammy’s car. And Alceste, in advance, for changing the light bulb in my hallway. (Alceste, can you change the lightbulb in my hallway? Please and thank you.)

But there are actual bona fide Clareified persons of the year this time!

Going into November, the result was an uncontested landslide. I mean, honest to goodness beatdown. But then he made some terrible decisions going into the final stretch, including re-raising me WITH ACE HIGH AND wishing that I lose in a superbowl to that dreadful CK, costing himself like 432 points and allowing a strong end of the year performance from my favorite not gay gay, to score the end of year tie.

I don’t think it’s any surprise that VinNay gets the 2010 Clareified person of the year honors. Outside of Mary and Alceste, I didn’t see anyone more than I saw my ninth favorite Buffalo resident. Our almost daily text messages which ran the gamut from the absurd (Nazi zombies) to the even more absurd (apocalypse survival planning day. “Less mass is good. F-train will survive forever.”), never failed to crack me up, even when I was in one of my determined to be in my most melacholy of moods. Who sends me random Star Wars dialogue at 6 am? And taunting pictures of himself drinking sodas when I don’t have one? And details his plans to kill all religious people, especially me? Yup. If I ever write the book “Texts with Vinnay,” it would be called “No hookers or cocaine, just sluts and beers.” But I couldn’t write that book because it would be way too racist and sexist. And the stuff about black hookers? Racist AND Sexist. Oh wait…I think I wrote that one.

It’s funny, many of my friendships all have the same milestones. The day when I’m finally comfortable enough with a person to say “Seriously, guy. There is no i in my name. The next time you spell my name with an i, I’m going to cut your throat.” The day when I’m all “Where are my commmmmeeennnnnnttttssssssssss????????” And when I actually answer a phone call from said person. And with Vinnay that was all this year! Plus, he was the first person who I let drive Prince Eli:

Well, second:


He has really great friends and I had fun hanging out with them in Buffalo and Las Vegas and I’m stealing every last one of them. He has terrible tastes in sports teams and I want no part of them. I’ve admired his loyalty to people even when they are stupid and evil and I hate them. But will grudgingly accept that he’s right when he says without certain aforementioned stupid evil people who I hate, we wouldn’t be friends. And I would be sad. I do wish I had known him before I became as jaded about friendships as I am. (Tired of being surprised when people I used to be close with suddenly vanish from my life for whatever reason, I have now required that my friends preschedule our friendship end dates. Vinnay called 2011. F-train called 2012. (*After* my birthday season, of course!) For the last seven months they’ve been in intense negotiations to switch. At last meeting, F-train offered Vinnay $120 for the 2011 slot. But I think everyone was drunk and now Vinnay can’t remember if he accepted or not.)
This is as close as Vinny ever comes to smiling in pictures.

Also, I love that he can’t ever beat me in poker! He is planning to invent games where the person with no chips left wins…in which case, he might stand a shot.

Anyways, Vinnay’s not just one of my favorite people to be silly with, but when Avery disappeared and was ultimately found, he was awesomely supportive in a completely non intrusive way. While Ave was still missing, I texted him for a whole afternoon about my theories about what might have happened — never once entertaining the possibility that Avery was dead. When I got the news that they found his body, Vinnay was one of the first people I told and he said “I had a feeling it was something like that.” And I was all “WHAT? But yesterday you were totally on board with amnesia! LIAR!” HMPH. I’m deducting another point.

Aw, but Vinnay also did poetry Wednesday four times, which is the most of anybody except me, which means that although I win poetry Wednesday. Vinnay comes in second, so I’ll give him a point for that.

So, he stays tied with F-train.

It’s weird that I’ve known F-train like for 12 years, but we have a very ebb and flow relationship. Like last year, for instance, I think I saw him maybe once and I barely talked to him whilst he was off jaunting about around the world covering poker tournaments and wooing his way through the world’s female Asian population. But this year, I saw him a bunch of times and we tweet and text all the time! He’s always trying to gross me out with his grossness. And making me laugh with his ongoing “stuff I want to comment, but can’t” texts. BUT he makes sure that he does actually comment! On ALL MY BLOGS. (I’m looking at you, you know who you are.) PLUS, F-train texts me stuff like “I need more posting from you, so I can comment!” He even drove his car through the rain, all night, flew like 300 miles, rode on the back of a pickup truck filled with straw and farm animals, just to surprise me in San Diego at the Patriots game! He very astutely then observed “Oh man, I probably shouldn’t have done this. Now she’s going to think she’s important and stuff.”
AND I DO! I’m totally important!! AND STUFF!

Also, his “hey for what it’s worth, you have my permission to skip my funeral if anything ever happens to me,” is totally one of the all time sweetest text messages I have ever gotten. But, like I’ve been telling everyone I know for the last two months: nobody else that I know is allowed to die. I mean it. I will… see here is where I would normally threaten violence and killing… well, something else! Nobody dies! #Dawnlaw

F-train is also my favoritest because even though he SAID we were going out to the Nevada desert where he was going to murder me and bury my body, WE ACTUALLY WENT FOR DONUTS! (No follow up questions about why I would voluntarily meet someone who told me they were planning to kill me. Dawn makes bad decisions. What?)
F-train and his bestest most important friend.

He is also an exceptional assessor of people and while he has mostly had the good sense not to render his judgments of me, whenever his assessments of others have hit too close to home, he always very sweetly says “well…but at least your self aware.” Awesome. #RUDE And now I’m deducting a point.

So, I guess Vinnay wins. But honestly, I love the two of them like a fat kid loves cake. It’s no coincidence that the three of us are all Cancers. Odd creatures who carry our protective shells on our back as we scuttle across the sands of life, but just beneath that surface we are delicious lumps of crab meat…mmm… crab… wait, where was I? Oh yeah, they’re awesome and in a year which has more sucked than not and I would have been content to stay hidden away till the new year, they were the ones who drew me out the most. I will miss whichever one of you gets 2011 terribly. For like four days, after which point you will be dead to me and I will never speak of you again. See how that works?

Honorable mention also goes to a Cancer: Little teeny perfectly normal baby size Max, who is the first infant not to cry at all when he met me.

Either time! Even though his parents tried to feed him yucky bananas when I was there and make him associate that grossness with black people. #RUDE

And lastly, well, let me preface this with Aunt Dawn does NOT have favorites. She loves all her nieces and nephews equally, she just loves Patriots fans most of all, so we give Clareified rookie of the year honors to the cutest Patriots fan in the world:


Seriously, DO NOT STARE DIRECTLY AT THIS PICTURE! You will go blinded from the adorableness.

It took like four days for my sight to come back. But it was totally worth it!


Damn, my friends have cute kids, don’t they? Show offs.

Happy New Year, everybody!

18 Responses to “Dawn’s totally cheerleader end of the year gratitude journal”

  1. April Says:

    1. It’s an honor just to be nominated. Or mentioned. Whatever.

    2. I called VinNay winning it all at Bellagio. Should have booked it then.

    3. I was unaware that we were pre-planning friendship events. I hate having to let F-Train go first, but that is what we do for ladies. Can I have 2013?

  2. April Says:

    Oh, and also? First comment. Clearly I love you the most.

  3. Jason Nassi Says:

    What, I don’t get a link?

  4. Grange95 Says:

    Wow, I got mentioned. Woot.

    (Seriously, VinNay and F-Train are awesomesauce).

  5. Pdov Says:

    I love Vinnay! Yay, now you must come again to my house! Once I get a texting plan I might be in the running for 2011! All I need is a smart phone. #notgoingtohappen #notsowitty

  6. VinNay Says:

    I’m trying to think of what to say, but there’s something in my eye. #cuttingonions

  7. Fisch Says:

    1) Wow that poker stuff was this year? Seems like ages ago.

    2) Wait, you never answer the phone when I call, does that mean…

    3) I call 2008!
    (c’mon that has to be one of the comments of the year!)

    4) Max wants to know where his fake-aunt-dawn is. And for some reason, he expects a present whenever he sees her. Speaking of conditioning.

  8. F-Train Says:

    Speaking of texting all the time… did you text me today? yesterday? I was deep in a badugi bender. (Wait, WHAT?!)

    I do wish we had more regular mis-adventures. Stupid Las Vegas. Remember that one time that it wasn’t a baby, it was a dog? And then you bit me? Or the time you almost passed out on the Boardwalk before we found some hideously gross and disgusting food to re-elevate your blood sugar? Or the throwing of the Scrabble board!

    I have no friends like you in Las Vegas, that’s for sure. Overall that’s probably a good thing but I don’t want any more points deducted so I’ll just say… at least you’re self-aware.

    PS. You didn’t mention what I gave you for your birthday this year, so I’ll re-add a point to my own tally. Tied with Vinnay, hooray!

    PPS to Fisch: I don’t know if it was comment of the year, but I laughed.

  9. F-Train Says:

    Also, pretty sure Vinnay and I were never able to nail down the trade. He wanted too much. It’s not that I don’t value 2011 immeasurably; just that I’m cheap.

  10. VinNay Says:

    F-Train – But she also did not mention the TWO gifts I got her for Christmas! Two points VinNay!

  11. VinNay Says:

    So I’m reading this and I get to the 3rd paragraph and think – “Oh no she didn’t just leave me out of the group thank and group clareified winners circle for 2010.” I seriously got mad for a second.

    And then I kept going and felt like a douche. And got something stuck in my eye.

    As for the losing of massive points at the end f the year, I guess this year was kinda like when the Patriots went undefeated and then in the Superbowl . . . no, wait, it’s not like that at all because I still won.

    As far as the massive point loss goes, let me make two points.

    1. It was AcKc. AK does not play well post flop, especially since post flop I would have been out of position, but it’s a good raising/re-raising hand pre. The second raise doesn’t mean Aces Dawn, you’re thinking of the fourth raise. Next time re-raise me back and I will fold.

    2. I wans’t root for CK over You. I’m rooting for anyone over Tom. And his girly haircut. And his Uggs.

    Out of context my texts sound really bad. Yeah, out of context, that’s the ticket.

    Our next HU matches will consist of Badugi, Razz, Baduci, Studugi (roll your own), and 2-7 Triple Draw.

    Not only do you answer phone calls from now, but you actually called me instead of texting the other day. #stillnotconvincedyouweremurdered

    If I die, you absolutely do not have permission to skip my funeral. You will come and tell everyone what an awesome person I was, and you will weep, and when they close the casket you will throw you body over it and scream “Whhhhhhhyyyyyy!?!?!??!?!” Then, you will listen to Don Mclean’s “Vincent” on repeat for 7 straight weeks. In fact, go listen to it now, in my honor, I’ll wait. Good song right? And totally about me. Finally, you will avenge my death. I suspect F-Train if it happens before your birthday in 2011.

    Stop looking at me.

    The orchestra is starting and they are trying to go to commercial, but I’m ignoring them.

    I have so many people to thank, without whom I would never have gotten this far. Thank you to my agent, She Who Shall Not Be Named, who set up the initial meetings. Thanks to my co-stars Mary, who helped arrange my surprise visit for Dawns bday, and F-Train who acted as the perfect foil, constantly making me look good. Thanks to the entire cast and crew of the ihadouts home game and the wpbt. Thank you to the cities of New York, Las Vegas, and Buffalo for allowing us to film there.

    And a special thanks to myself, for being awesome.

  12. Mark Says:

    Stephane – First of all, well written, as usual. Secondly, knowing full well that VinNay is already WAY full of himself, why would you bestow this honor upon him, especially without any parameters? You know, like, 1) He can never mention that he was selected to anyone, ever. or 2) If he gets swollen headed about it he has to worship the Patriots and their Gay Leader Tom Brady for an entire season? Simple oversights on your part, I believe. Lastly, and most importantly, I need to thank you. Your assessment of Cancers (not that I buy into that shit for a second) is accurate, and only through your oddball relationship with VinNay have we, on this side of his universe, been able to see his other side, the shell side, if you will.
    So I will encourage you, in your future ramblings about Vin, to do the following:
    A- Guidelines for his use and re-broadcasting of any and all accolades.
    B- Instead of busting on his sports teams (Yankees excluded) which are far superior to your selections, perhaps you could make aspersions about his Pauly Walnuts appearance?
    C – Continue not to take any of our calls (the 716’ers) as there is not doubt that, given enough time and motivation, we shall drag you down to our level.

  13. KJ Says:

    Happy New Year!

  14. Wygant Says:

    Whoo Hoo! Rookie of the Year! I’ll take it.

    No long speeches. I’d just like to thank God, my Mom and Tom Brady.

  15. Mary Says:

    Happy New Year to Dawn and all the Clareified readers!

  16. kaz Says:

    triumph! also, f-train is correct, it totally wasn’t a baby – it was A DOG!

  17. Sidney Says:

    This is bullshit.

  18. Dawn summers Says:


    Your comment was perfect.

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