PATRICK MCVAY

WRITER

Welcome! Please take off your shoes.  I want you to be comfortable while visiting my website, and I think you would be more comfortable if you weren't tracking dirt around. You may be asking yourself, how did I end up here, and how do I leave? Please, stay for a moment, I beg you. Read more

Macaquetavists Unite!

 

Recent efforts to protest Shell Oil’s arctic drilling by paddle-wielding “kayaktavists” in Seattle tells me that not enough people are making use of activist-esque monikers. For example, with the way my dental hygienist touts the advantages of brushing and flossing, she could easily be called a Plaquetivist. Not to mentoin those Snacktivist parents out there who can’t let half an hour of play time to happen without a 15 minute snack break. But there's so much more:

 

  • Smacktivists: public health officials who decry the lack of heroin addiction treatment.
  • Flapjacktivists: kids who pound the table on Saturday mornings until they are fed pancakes.
  • Knick-Knacktivists: people who overpay for bric-a-brac.
  • Bric-a-bractivists: people who sell their knickknacks in yard sales to support hoarder research.
  • Clam Shacktivists: people who think you can’t get a proper clam if it isn’t sold in a broken down hut.
  • Yaktivists: People who claim that we can fuel our future on the liquefied dung of wild Tibetan yaks.
  • Unpacktivitists: You’ve gone on long trips with them, and when you return home they are too exhausted to unpack.
  • Heart Attacktivists: Start you on a statin drug as a teen so that you die of liver cancer at 65 instead of a myocardial infarction.
  • Air Sactivists: They are constantly in your face about all the cigarette smoking you did 25 years ago.
  • Roof Racktivists: Whether they are on two-week vacation or off to the hardware store, they don’t leave their roof rack at home.
  • Ice Packtivists: Decry the general lack of ice packs on hand at toddler soccer games.
  • Weed Whacktivists: Observe loudly that womens never weed whack, only mens. (Tend to be under 3 years of age).
  • Union Jacktivists: Fly the Union Jack outside their redneck homes because they think it’s actually a confederate flag.
  • Jumping Jacktivists: You can see them on TV whining that we Americas spend too much time on our assess watching TV.
  • Panic Attacktivists: First rate hyperventilators who use the technique to get us to stay in relationships with them.
  • Freddie Mactivists: People who wonder, “Why is the US Government involved in mortgages?” and so forth…

 

Can't tell you my own activist moniker until I register it with the US Patent Office. 


 

 

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Recluse

 

One reason my career as a writer hasn’t taken off is that I make myself far too available to my fans and the media. Just give me a call and you’ll see. You want to talk about my career? I’m all mouth. What am I working on now? Let me lay it out for you in plain English.

Such ineptitude. Such folly. Imagine if I holed myself up in some cabin in the woods in the middle of 40 fenced-in acres with a bunch of loud dogs roaming around, with no telephone nor mailbox. And then, your newspaper editor tasks you with writing a profile of me (“and get some quotes this time!”) Good luck! I’m not going to be available, so don’t bother. You just irritate me, you and everyone else who wants to know about me. Go write that in your newspaper, buddy. And if you catch me unawares at the post office one day, sporting a beard that puts Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s to shame, don’t try to get an impromptu interview because I might pull out my shotgun and tell you to move along.

Under these circumstances, my books would sell in an instant! Just look at J.D. Salinger. Just look at Thomas Pynchon. Can I tell you something? Those guys are socialites compared to the newly reclusive Patrick McVay.

Gotta write a book first.

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Hot Burning Fire

 

Back A.D. 1973 or thereabouts, when the movie The Exorcist came out and the kids in my Catholic school started to freak out about Satan, I came to own my very own scapular and wore it all the time. For the uninitiated, scapulars are postage stamp-sized cloth flaps, connected by string, that you wear over the shoulders such that one flap lays against your back and one against your chest.

The first time I encountered a scapular was when I was playing with this kid from down the street and saw one peeking out from under his shirt collar.  He explained the concept: if you suddenly got creamed by a car (which kids my age were known for doing back then) while wearing a scapular, there was no way you could go to hell. It was, like, physically impossible. Look, it was printed right on the scapular: “Whosoever dies wearing this scapular shall not suffer eternal fire.” That's totally awesome! Also implausible, but what he hell, might as well wear one just in case.

There was a catch, however: you could still end up in purgatory, which is quite like hell in several respects – fire and agony and so forth – but falls a little shy of eternity.

Don’t know what became of my scapular, but I know where I can snag a new one: The Catholic Company (“Because Faith Matters”).

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The Aleman Cometh

 

Whenever I come up with a great idea for a new business, I quickly realize that someone else came up with the same great idea long ago and is now awash in riches.

This happened with my beer machine idea (“It’s a machine that makes beer™”), which hadn’t resided in my head for more than five minutes before I recognized that someone had surely invented one already. And of course someone had. (How could something so essential not have been invented? It’s like not having invented the ice cube).

Now I come up with an idea for a service to replenish fluids in the old and infirm called “Beers on Wheels,” and dammit if a Hungarian outfit isn’t already using that same name. It's true that my plan, which provides Belgian-style ales to people whose advanced years and aching bones make it hard to get out of the house to obtain their owned damned Belgian ales, is very different than the Hungarian plan, which involves pedaling an 18-person cycle around the city of Budapest whilst being served “high quality beer,” (really? I don’t recall any orders of Pat’s Black Saison coming from Budapest). This makes me wonder if I might put such a plan into action in Boston or perhaps Dover, MA (not far outside of town).

Anyway, you can’t believe the opposition we faced trying to get this off the ground: no one wanted to “be responsible” for old tipsy folk stumbling around their living rooms. (I thought they meant “ol’ tipsy folk,” but that’s really all of us.) But we overcame the conundrum by arguing in court that old folks stumble around their living rooms whether they are tipsy or not.

So now I need a new name for my business, something significantly better than “Belgian Ales on Wheels". Soon to be posting new openings in my branding department for this very purpose.

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