“What can one do to be happier in this world?”

This question slip of paper accidentally fell onto the floor during my show now I get to answer it three weeks later.

Try these in combination or isolation, repeat as needed but use moderation in most: Cocaine, having children, riding a bicycle down the street and looking up as the trees go by (caution!), traveling, staying at home with a book or better yet several football games on TV or long romantic Bollywood movies like HumTum, cheeseburgers, -forget the Cocaine, that was bad idea, back to the good ideas- meditate, be quiet, take off your seatbelt and stick your head out the window, visit Estonia in July, take a first sip of beer on a hot day after long work, make love, make art, make sexy times, read Sunday New York Times, eat a shrimp tail, tell a tall tale, tell a lie just for the thrill, and smile when you are happy but try smiling even if you are not happy because it might just make you happy, writie a poem, write a letter, find a giant sculpture and hang off it, pretend you are a model and have someone take pictures of you, listen to music, listen to nothing, listen like Orpheus, and if all else fails, just hug it out- its impossible not to be happy while you hug (and even sometimes it lead to sexy times!)

Word of Zamboni correctly has been spake!

Why Am I always disappointing people?

This question I was avoiding for long time because even it make Zamboni fidget. It come from “R” in Peru.

Personally, being Zamboni, I have never experienced this “disappointing people” because Zamboni is always filling people with wonder, shock, and awe-inspiration. So I consulted Jordan my lowly-worm human vessel, and he say he have much experience with this. So yes, even Zamboni need help to answer the tough questions.

He say almost everyday, even on the good days, he feel like he can be letting someone down. He say maybe his children, he was not patient enough, he forget to make breakfast, he forget to hug the boy or the girl. Or he say also there is usually a disappointing of the self, and that can be the worst kind. Like he didn’t get done what he wanted, he did not exercise, etc, blah blah Zzzzzzzzzz..Then I fell asleep into my bowl of flax gruel and Red Bull because he started to bore me. It sounded like a lot of what my great grandmother Shorty Smolenkovitz used to call “Whiney Doo Ha”. I slapped him twice in  face, dunked him and he felt so much better.

So my answer to you friend is this: You aren’t necessarily disappointing people, but you are feeling that you are. You can’t really get inside the head of another. Don’t spend valuable time obsessing over how others feel, you can’t control that. All you can do is minute to minute say, “what do I need to do in this situation? what is my job?” Then do it.

But if someone does say “you really disappointed me, you let me down..” just ask yourself honestly, “did I do wrong?” and if the answer comes out yes, don’t pull a Bill Clinton and deny it or say “what is your definition of ‘me'” Just own up and say, yes, I did let you down, and also myself, I won’t do that again…I am a heel, but won’t be one every day…

Thorny Question:

“If a fourteen year old suddenly finds out his dad was previously married and lied about it, how should one proceed?”

This one comes to Zamboni from a young reader named, “O”.

Young reader, be kind. The cardinal rule of parenting is “do no harm”. What information your dad guy did not give you, well this did not hurt you right? To stories like this (which happened long ago in a world in which you did not exist!) there is always more muffins than the ones you see…

Look at it this way, my adoptive cheesfarming parents, after making me milk goat from dawn until noon, used to  make me -after a lunch of breadcrumb- do a thing called “gassers“. They had a hairbrain idea to turn me, just me (yes, my eleven adopted siblings all got to go down to the mudhole after lunch and swim) into an Olympic fencer of great strength. So, they would make me run all the way up Smolenka Hill (covered with thorny Carpberries in Summer!) and run down and repeat 25 times without stopping. My point is, there is cruelty, and then there is cruelty.

What makes Humans so beautiful is not beauty. It is frailty, mistakes, misteps, mishaps, omissions, forgetfullness, and ultimately, the mighty heroism of simply getting up in the morning and trying to do the right thing.

Zamboni has a good friend, “C” who recently lost her father. She is a young woman and she really loved this guy. He is gone and will not come back. She very strong, but this doesn’t change the loss.

So your dad disappoints you- suck it up and move on. In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn’t matter. I’m sure he has complaints about you, so spend less time wanting your parents to be perfect, and like Voltaire said, “cultivate your own garden.”

You don’t like the advice Zamboni give? So run a gasser, you’ll feel better. (And by the way, I did make Estonian Olympic team, 1936! Thanks mom and dad)

The root of your problem my friend is this very scary realization: your dad is a person, and had a life before you. I, know, strange.

Things I learned doing the Show:

Hello friends, I am great zamboni, and my five week engagement in Berkeley Ca. just ended, holy cheese did I learn a lot about you, your problems, and even myself- and the devil as well.

About you: I learned that we all have pretty much the same questions, and yet each night it was difficult to predict what queries filled up the jar: Who was the sexiest presiden? How can I have more joy in my life and less stress? How can I find out what i’m meant to do? What is the key to good parenting? What should I do about my ex-wife and her high demands on me? Why does sex make everything so complicated in a friendship? I just found out my dad was married before he married my mom  what should I do? Vanilla or Chocolate?  and probably the hardest question of all, “Who’s responsible?”

What I (Zamboni) learned about me: that people generally like Zamboni and that many people are laughing at (with? no probably at) him quite vociferously and a lot. Some compare me to Borat, others say “you are funnier than that Ali G guy!”, that everyone likes free T-shirts, and Zamboni has  a knack for making permanent love connections with his trademarked Zamboni dating Game. I learned that people feel comfortable enough around Zamboni to boo and yell things and yet most return after intermission, and even stay after the show and say praise. I learned Zambones can make em laugh, but also can make ’em go “m…ah.”

What I (Jordan the actor) learned: solo shows are frickin hard, tiring, grueling and a helluva lot of work. Big new respect have I for Dan Hoyle, Bogosian, Danny Hoch, Anna Deveare Smith, Josh Kornbluth, and anyone who gets on stage by themselves for an hour plus. I shvitzed like a damn sprinter every night. I learned having a director is key, and without one like Katja Rivera I would have been sailing a nice boat without a rudder to give me any unifying direction or purpose. Is rudder the word? I think it is. I learned I have a crazy-supportive family who double as Zamboni fans and having them in the house was a great spur. I learned I have friends who will be honest about the show and that there’s no shame in listening to ’em. I learned having an audience of six happens, but if it’s a rowdy group of senior citizens who decide they can talk back to me every 5 minutes, then it makes for a memorable show anyway.

I learned sucking back a Gu before every show is a good idea. Those cyclists know energy boost.

And lastly, I learned that the Devil is always very punctual, and  as stereotyped as it may be, does in fact wear a red dress.

Does retirement cause death?

Dear Great Zamboni-

Is the fact that people who retire are more likely to meet their death in the ensuing years influenced by whether or not they find something to do after retirement?  -SK Dance

You know- this is interesting question. What happens after we get done working and we can “rest” or “retire”? My maternal grandmother, Smolenka Slipuvitz, was a famous cheesemaker and Estonian Olympic fencing coach. Cheese was her vocation, fencing was her passion. Her curd straining and sheep- milking allowed precious little time for her fencing, nonetheless the bills had to be paid. When she retired from cheese, she devoted herself to her students of the saber and the foil, yet her age made movement difficult. Nevertheless, this retirement activity kept her alive with passion until the age of 102.

My step-father-mentor, The Baron von Sthunderstucke, died almost immediately after retiring from the military. He tried golf and stamp collecting but nothing caught traction of him.

So the answer to your question is yes- but more than this, we don’t just start aging or dying on the first day of retirement. We are busy dying and aging every day. I am dying now so are you. If the clock is moving, we are dying. Like the old peasants used to say while they drank hickory wine under the Walnut tree, “new day, some old smell.” Right?

Prepare to die!

Why do the women wear bikinis in olympic beach volleyball?

This good question from Pod In France..

Zamboni knows this, as usual.. you see Beach Volleyball is a sport of leisure and the beach, perfected by hot beach-going people of both male and female species, in a  place where appearance and beauty is paramount and also very important: southern california.

You see, muscle tone, tan shade, and athletic physique is so big in “So-Cal” that when I Zamboni, lived there pursuing business for the Estonian Film council, I ate only protien-shakes made of raw tuna  beets, and flax. On top of that I spray tanned myself each day and worked out ceaselessly with 2 hungarian hammer packs.

My point is, that sport is and has always been about beauty. Even in classic times, Seneca said it was only right for the athlete to work on his body for most of the day, just the way a poet would work on his or her craft. These beach volleyball goddesses -indeed aspiring to be crushing presences like Athena and the huntress Artemis, wear the bikini because they cannot be nude. They should, in the greek Olympic spirit- be totally nude as many of the greek origianl Olympians were- yet of course we today are too much puritans to allow for this. Yes, Olympians should all be nude. Just not the winter ones.

Is not beauty also power? ask the chicken

You may remember Berlin, 1936, where I great zamboni was disbanded from the Estonian Fencing team for fighting a match of foils in the nude against a mean looking German. When asked “what the hell are you doing Zamboni?” by the chairman of the competition, I memorably replied, “letting my willy be free!”

Though I was escorted out somewhat over-forcefully, I did manage to flip the bird to Hitler, and make a small pee pee on leg of Goering.

So, the bikini is there to celebrate the wonder of the athletes only real equipment- their bodies. Being close to naked, it is closer to the original spirit of the games. Plus, we do age people, and it’s okay to flaunt it while we got it. Remember when the swimming men only wore the speedo?

what do you see?