Outland Reopens... Again

The Outland is reopening for the third time since I started going back in 1999. Check out this article in Columbus Alive.

The Outland is a wonderful goth bar with dancing, torture and a rum and coke that will kill cancer. It's open until 4:00am and offers some of the best people watching in town. Though the best part is that you can dance as poorly as I do and no one gives a shit. I love that place.

One of my favorite Outland stories involves my brother Steve and Johnny Two-Sack. It was in 2001 and Steve and I spent the afternoon in Athens, OH watching Toledo beat OU in football. We drove back to Columbus and partied at Shorty's house for a few hours. While drinking, we told my brother a bit about the Outland and how great it was. He said, "Detroit, baby. Let's go."

So John drove us over close to the club and we all got out of the car. Steve was wearing a trench coat and a Toledo Rockets jersey and a tee underneath. I took a look at his get up and said, "You can't wear that shirt in there."

Steve looked at me and removed his jacket. Then he took off his jersey. And his tee-shirt. Bare chested, he put his trench coat back on.

John perked up at this point. "Steve, I can't let you go in like that." And John took off his leather jacket, removed his shirts and then put his jacket back on. "OK, now we can go in."

On the inside, we drank and I stood off to the side and watched as John and my brother danced with the goths and the punks. I bumped into a guy from work. We chatted a bit and he pointed out my brother on the dance floor. "Look at that guy." I said, "That's my brother." Friend said, "Is he a regular?"

I hope to see you there tomorrow. I'll be the one with a rum and diet, dancing like a fool. Dancing like a regular. Hopefully I will have a shirt on.

This isn't going to work, Joseph.

How to know when a relationship is over

Your relationship has been dragging and you know that it might soon be over. You throw everything you have into keeping it together, but something just isn’t right. Here are a few ways to know when a relationship is done for:

1. They aren’t at home anymore
If you wake up and your lover is not there, it might be because they got up early to go to work and get the McGruder project back on track. When they do not come home that night, they might be working late and forgot to call. When you check and see that all their clothes are gone, maybe it is because they went on a business trip and neglected to remind you. When they don’t come back from that business trip for over a month, you can be sure that they have left you.

2. Wife puts her maiden name on Facebook

Nothing says “game over” like your wife putting her maiden name up on Facebook. The deal is that most the people you and she interact with know your wife by her married name. When she puts her maiden name up on Facebook, she’s basically advertising to all the guys she knew in high school and college that she’s still out there and available if things don’t work out with you.

3. You wake up dead
There is a split second between deep sleep and death when you realize that some shit has gone down. Waking up with a gunshot wound is a sure sign that things just aren’t working out. Try not to bleed on the carpet; your spouse has got to resell this home once you have passed on.

4. You are not having sex, but your spouse is
When your spouse rolls in drunk at 3:30am and immediately jumps into the shower, you might accept the excuse that they were sweaty from jogging. At 3:30am. Since they have taken a shower, you ask if they want to have sex and they say, “No, I’ve had enough tonight,” you can pretty much assume that it’s over.

5. Your shit is in the driveway
If you can’t pull into the driveway because your clothes, books and favorite furniture is blocking the drive way, it could be because a reality show appeared and is filming in your house on closet reorganization. Once you notice your better half throwing it from the second story window, you’d better call your friend who owns a truck to help you cart your crap off.

6. Spouse has virtual wedding with someone else on-line
So your partner is involved in on-line games. Great! They have a hobby. When they start making life decisions based on the religious beliefs of a shaman, it’s awesome that they are expanding their religious horizons. When you find them leaving for the airport to fly to Reno to meet Gruflchette for a nude ceremony under the full moon, you can pretty much delete the relationship.

7. Twilight
If your spouse is reading Twilight, you are obviously not giving them enough romance or excitement. You think Tolkien was getting laid? That man only had sex if he was writing about wood nymphs and elves getting it on. If your loved one doesn’t have a bookmark because they can tear through a whole 1200 pages of Harry Potter, your relationship is finished.

8. They volunteer for the military
Remember how you were planning for that trip into wine country? Remember? And the day you were leaving, your partner said that they just had to run down to the recruiter's office for just a minute. And then you sat there with the picnic basket for a few hours wondering whether you were going to go with the pinot noir or the merlot. Three weeks later someone comes to your door asking for donations for gift packages to send to your partner who is bravely serving overseas. Done.

9. They scream someone else's name during sex
... and you hear it as you walk in the house from work. You're done.

10. You are reading this
If you are reading this final paragraph, you must have some inclination that things are going to shit. Most people would have quit reading at #2 or at best #3. But no, you kept delving, searching for some explanation why your lover is playing WOW naked with a Twilight book on tape playing in the background. It’s over Johnny. It’s over.

Edtitcational Shirts

I look at women's boobs. It is a built in, DNA programmed reflex and I'm done fighting it. Knowing that guys will stare at a woman's chest, I thought it best that we make the most of it. So I created the Edtitcational Shirt Series: math and scientific formulas printed on t-shirts so that guys can learn while they yearn.


The Quadratic Equation


Pythagorean Identity

Click on a photo to order or go to www.skreened.com/holyjuan to see my whole collection of HolyJuan Brand T-shirts.

Additional Helpful H1N1 Health Hints from the CDC

The CDC has published updated guidelines for avoiding the H1N1. In order to keep yourself and your loved ones healthy, you'll need to do the following:

1. Continue and increase all ingestion of bacon, ham, pork loin, sausage and pork rinds (except for Canadian Bacon - no one really knows what's in that, anyhow). Increasing your consumption will additionally help stave off the insidious effects of vegetarianism.

2. Throw out (preferably burn) all copies of Charlotte's Web books, VHS tapes, books-on-tape or 20th anniversary commemorative talking LP records to ensure no second-hand "Some pig!" H1N1 contagion.

3. Get an H1N1 flu shot vaccine. Note that you may have to disguise yourself as a 14-year-old unwed pregnant girl to ensure that you move to the top of the flu-shot priority queue. This will not be a problem in the Mid-West.

4. Start freebasing Airborne, Zicam, Sudafed, Centrum and Valtrex to maximize your immune system's efficacy in warding off disease. In a pinch, mix 1 tsp sugar with a glass of water. It works equally as well.

5. Up the ante - why wash your hands, when you can solder them clean? Note that solder gun and silver solder are not insurance-approved items eligible for year-end deduction.

6. Rent The Boy in the Bubble, starring John Travolta, and build your own hermetically-sealed mobile quarantine immunity dome. (Note: Conversion to Scientology is not necessary, though it is a well-known fact that Operating Thetans are immune to every disease and illness except gravity. And skepticism.)

7. Remember that alcohol kills germs - imbibe copious quantities of Wild Turkey, Grey Goose and Jim Beam before and during working hours. When co-workers discuss immunizations, tell them that you've had a shot and will have several more before the day is through.

8. Have sex with a nurse or doctor. H1N1 cannot be passed through sexual contact, and this will build up your resistance. Just remember, no kissing; it's too personal. You stay numb, you don't get involved.

9. Watch "Deliverance" up until the "squeal like a pig" scene. Turn off your televsion, put on your Ned Beatty pajamas and curl up on a cold concrete floor for the night. Torn rectum is optional.

10. Get it over with. Why avoid the inevitable? Lick door knobs and keyboards. Stand at the bus stop have the children rub their snot-encased forearms against your nose and mouth. Dumpster diving at the doctors office is not uncommon for the desperate. Find yourself a nice Ayn Rand book or congressional Health Care bill and rest for the next six days. You've earned it!

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The Fairfield County Fair in Two Parts: Carnies and Aim

Greg has been asking about the circus. Really he means the Fairfield County Fair and he usually corrects himself right after the word circus comes out of his mouth. He and I have a lot in common with our word selection except that instead of circus I accidentally say boobs. Greg’s been asking about the circus Fairfield County Fair so that he can get another goldfish. So on Wednesday, still dizzy and recovering from the flu, I picked him up from school and we drove to Lancaster to go to what is currently the happiest place in Greg’s mind. This story is broken into two parts: Carnies and Aim. I am sad to report that I only took two photos during this whole trip. I apologize that I will have to illustrate this story with boobs words instead of photos.

Carnies
As you pull into the Fairfield County Fair, you must pass through two human gates. The first person takes your money for admission ($5.00 for adults and Greg was free as was the parking) and they hand you x amount of tickets according to how many people you just paid for. The next person is about 30 feet up and they take the tickets that the first person just gave you. This is very inefficient and I still don’t understand why they first person just doesn’t collect the money and send you on your way. (I should clarify at this point that the people at the gates are Lancaster folk and not carnie folk.) As you pull away from the second set of people, you are guided towards the grass field to park. There are people to guide you and, on this day, it was like driving in reverse past a human evolution illustration. The first guy seems normal, the second was hunched over with a stalk of corn waving me past and the third guy was covered in hair and waved me on with a jawbone. The field was a muddy mess and I noted that a “Park at Your Own Risk!” sign was mounted about 50 feet past the point of no return of having to park. So we risked and parked.

The field was a muddy mess because it had been raining for about two days. The temperature was hovering around 47 degrees and there was just enough of a breeze to make you regret not wearing a sock hat.

I had to pee and tried to get Greg to go. He wouldn’t. The facilities at the Lancaster Fair Grounds aren’t primitive, but damn are they old. The stalls are about 18” wide and if you had to poop, you would have to do it in shifts.

We stopped and got fair fries. As the fairgrounds were pretty empty on a cold, wet, Wednesday afternoon, we got quick service. The fries were awesome. Greg likes his with vinegar and ketchup. I’m a vinegar only man, but will split a medium cup with both vinegar and ketchup with the boy. Greg kept saying, “These are good. I don’t know why the vinegar tastes good. These are good.” They were hot and delicious and kept the cold and wet at bay. I spent a good 18 napkins wiping off the 6” diameter ring of ketchup from Greg’s mouth.

The plan was to hit the fries, play some games, get a fish, and grab a candy apple on the way out the door. It was wet and cold and I was post-flu weak and already just wanted to go home. So we headed towards the row where the carnie games are located.

Oh dear god, the depression and sadness that filled the fair that day. I thought carnies were sad enough, but you get them wet cold and without customers they all ooze desperation and sweat processed methamphetamines. It was a gauntlet of pathetic taunts and barker’s sales pitches.

“One dart, you win!”
“Every kid wins!”
“Come on dad! Win one for the boy.”
“Only a dollar!”
“Easy win here dad!”
“I killed my wife in 1986.”
“One dart gets your choice!”
“Three balls only a dollar.”

We checked out the different booths as Greg eyed the huge stuffed animals and I pointed to the tiny ones. I was looking for the “Kids win every time” booths. They actually have games of no chance were you just pay one, three of five dollars and pick your prize. They fool the kids with some random floating duck mumbo jumbo, but in the end, everyone is happy.

We finally decided on a booth that had small SpongeBob Square pants. It was a balloon pop game and Greg was keen to throw darts this year. I asked the carnie guy what the deal was and they had a tiered pricing system for three darts that would gain larger and larger prizes as the price point went up. I settled for $5. Greg actually hit two balloons, but he needed three for the win. At that point, carnie guy reaches in the kids win every time basket for a tiny stuffed banana. He then leans into me and says, “For $5, you throw one dart and hit or miss, you get anything over here.” He gestured along the wall and the corner where a small SpongeBob sat. I said, “Sounds good,” and forked over another $5. I actually hit a balloon. Carnie said, “OK sonny, pick anything from this area.”

Greg pointed to SpongeBob again and said his choice.

Carnie said, “Oh no. Not there. Any where in this area.” And he pointed to a small area next to SpongeBob.” So I pulled out the Dude.

“Dude! You said $5 more bucks and we could have the SpongeBob.”

“No I didn’t. I said in this area.” His hand strayed even further from Bob.

“Dude. You completely pointed to the SpongeBob. Give us the SpongeBob.”

“That’s not what I said.” A whistle came out from between his eight teeth when he said said.

“Then give me back the $5 and we’ll take the stinking stuffed banana.”

I’m not sure if they guy felt bad for Greg or if I started to actually go Berserker on him, but he said, “All right, you can have the SpongeBob.” He pulled it off the wall and handed it to me. I turned to hand it to Greg who was now not standing alone. He had a new carnie friend who was watching me interact with his cohort. I handed it to Greg and pushed him off to the other side of the path at the same time. I’m not sure if carnies have a secret, sub-vocal alarm system, but that guy appeared from out of my blind spot, seemingly to ensure there was not a problem.

We went the other way. Quickly. I then realized that I had gotten into an argument with someone over a $3.99 stuffed toy and that I had won. But there’s an old carnie saying that goes, “If you think you’ve won an argument with a carnie, check you wallet and then your heartbeat.”

I realized that the next part of our stop to get a poster required us to travel past SpongeBob’s old home. We tried to sneak by. Carnie was chatting with the got-your-back carnie that showed up. I didn’t try to listen or look.

We made it to the poster booth where all you have to do is throw a dart and hit the wall and you win your choice. Greg did and selected a Scooby Doo poster. I tucked the poster in my jacket and stood up just in time to see my carnie pal walk by with a cigarette in his mouth. He didn’t notice me.

I then realized that perhaps he was going on break and the other carnie guy was there to relieve him. Maybe I’m just a jerk. Maybe the guy realized that he had made a mistake and didn’t want to see a little kid upset by his dad making a scene. Maybe carnies aren’t that bad.

Aim
We tucked away our spoils from the carnie booths and ended up at the goldfish booth. This game entails throwing ping pong balls into narrow necked bowls of water. You make one in the bowl, you win a gold fish. I bought Greg 12 balls for $2, knowing I’d probably need to buy 12 more.

He made one on the second shot. I started to do the math. At that rate, we’d have six fish. We could only make room for one more. Two would really be pushing it. Six and PETA would be dropping by.

Luckily, the goldfish booth also has one jar with red water in it. If you hit that, you can win a stuffed animal. I had Greg aim at that. He’s got good aim, but not that good. By aiming for the red, the missed shots were flying over the other containers. We ended up with only the one fish. The carnie filled a plastic bag with water and deftly reached into a tank and picked out our new friend. He tied it off and handed it to the beaming Greg.

After the fish, we scoured the fair looking for kettle corn. There’s a difference between caramel corn and kettle corn and I hope you get to taste the difference some day. We did not find any, so we settled for caramel corn for mom, a caramel apple for Ann and a candy apple for Greg.

We trudged back through the parking lot mud and we were about forty feet from the car when Greg announced that he had to pee. I said he could pee at the car. We pull the trick where the car door is opened and you can pee with 240 degrees of privacy. Greg stated that he would no be able to pee with other people around so I said we could go to a restaurant and pee. He was OK with that.

Somewhere in the forty foot walk to the car, Greg’s bladder informed him that it was going to let loose right now. He started saying, “I gotta pee! Right now.” I tossed all the prized possessions into the car, except for the fish which I stuck on the roof. We got the door open and he was fighting his pants down.

“You got it?”

“I got it.”

A laser thin stream of urine shot out of his body and began to carve a hole in the soft wet earth. That kid had really had to pee. I was standing behind him making sure that things didn’t go awry when shit went awry. He lost his grip and that pee stream went fire hose and started to fly up on to the open door and into the car. “Greg!” He started laughing. “I can’t help it.” I reached over and tried to do damage control. Pee was deflecting off the door and on to the floor mats and seat and dashboard. His pants had come up and were forcing his wiener in every direction but down. I ended up pushing everything in the groin area down; his gloves and jacket and shirt and pants and penis all got shoved down. The pee gave a last ditch effort to continue to hit the door, but gave up and decided to soak his jeans. Greg was still laughing. I was trying not to. We got his wet gloves off and I shoved him into his seat. I didn’t forget the fish on the roof. We drove home.

Mission completed.

So after a whirl wind trip to the fair, Greg only remembers one thing and the entire trip I only took two photos. Two photos of the pee damage to my car. Enjoy.


Man planning to go back in time to keep Obama from winning election

COLUMBUS OH (HJ) – Rex Mullins is in his garage, wedged under a large, egg shaped metal contraption, tracing wires and looking for the short that was created during the last test run. “Got it!” He asks me to hand him a red spool of wire and some wire cutters. He remarks, “This will be so much easier for the past me to build this once I hand myself the instructions six years ago!”

Rex is building a time machine. His time travel plan is so off base that I am going to have him say it in his own words. “I plan on going back in time to kill Karl Rove so that John Kerry will win the 2004 Presidential election which will then, in turn, keep Obama from running and thus winning the 2008 Presidential election.” Rex elaborates, “Without Rove, Bush didn’t have a chance of winning. Rove masterminded the election turn around. He messed with the public polling. Heck, I think he rigged half the voting machines in Ohio. Without him, Bush won’t win in 2004 and Obama won’t run in 2008. Pretty ingenious if you ask me.”

We headed back inside Rex’s modest home while he took a break from building. He looked around the kitchen and said, “I like this place, but while I’m back in time I’m going to move my investments around. Dump them right before the bottom falls out. Once I get back to 2009, I’ll buy up a foreclosed mansion.”

Rex’s plan was hatched a few weeks ago when he happened to catch the first half of Back to the Future 3 right after watching an episode of Dr. Who. “Then it hit me. Get Kerry to win and no Obama.” Rex said he knew Kerry couldn’t win on his own, so he had to get Bush to lose. “That’s when it hit me… kill Rove in 2003 and no Bush win in 2004. I hate to kill a fellow Republican, but if that’s what it takes… I’ll do it.”

As Rex showed me around the house, we came upon some photographs. Rex became quiet as he stared a photo of an older woman. “My mother passed away the night Obama was elected. Some say it was chance. I think she died of a broken heart.” He picked the photo up looked for a moment before reflecting, “How many other elderly people died that election night? You people in the media laugh, but Obama’s been killing elderly folks even before his health care death panels are instituted. I plan to change that.”

As we headed back in the kitchen, I asked him why he didn’t just go back and knock off Obama. Rex laughed, “You haven’t read up on your time travel history. See, Obama’s the next Hitler, and you just can’t go back in time and kill Hitler cause then someone comes back in time a little earlier and kills you. This way, it’s nice and clean.”

When I asked him if perhaps Karl Rove had been brought back in time by a future Rex Mullins to help Bush win the 2004 election to keep Kerry from being elected. Rex mulled that over for a bit. “Damn. I never thought about it that way. Maybe it’s Rove that is the next Hitler and I’m just retracing mistakes made by a past time traveling me.” He got up and poured himself a glass of wine. After half a glass he came to terms with himself. “I’m going to stick to Plan A. If I see another me in the past, I guess I’ll just have to kill him too. I’d rather have Karl Rove Hitler than an Obama Hitler.”

Rex plans on going back in time next week.

“I first plan on traveling back to August 4, 1961 and destroying Obama’s birth certificate just to really piss him off.”

Horrible Request

This is a scan of a letter that we received at work via fax. I have covered up the bits that would reveal the name of the lunatic that wrote it. I mean, you'd have to be crazy to send this letter out in its current format.
(Sorry, I cannot size this photo correctly so you can squint to read it or click on it to get a HUGE version.)

Twitter Grammar

On Twitter this morning, oxcartkarma said:

So I replied:

Messing with the Urologist

This is the label from the specimen container which I turned over to my Urologist. It was four weeks after my vasectomy and they were checking to see if there were any swimmers left.
sample-label-hj

He's a Urologist so I assume he has a sense of humor.

How to Fabricate Your Own Bible

Making your own Bible can not only be satisfying; it can guarantee your entry ticket into heaven or whatever afterlife you create! Follow these simple steps to make your own physical manifestation of your deity’s (deities’) words.

Rule One: Paradoxes
The only way your Bible can be successful is if it cannot be disproven. The only way to make sure this can’t happen is to build a few logical dead ends. Don't immediately suggest that your god is infallible. Rookie mistake. By suggesting that your god is always right, you get people pointing at platypuses and suicide bombers and that causes doubt. You should instead say that your god is always going to test his people. And, of course, always have your god always answer questions with a question.

If all that fails, make the starting entry of your Bible be the following, indisputable statement: “First!”

Rule Two: Make Up Rules
No Bible is complete without a list of rules that cannot be broken under penalty of crappy afterlife. The wackier the rule, the more that people will believe that there is some heavenly inspiration for it.

Thou shalt not prance
Thou shalt not eat cheese with a fork
Thou shalt not wear of metal the hat unless in battle for your Lord
Eat only of the left hand
Bury thy dead with a magazine of your choosing
Thou shall not recycle brown glass
Thou shalt turn left three times after passing thy gas
Thou shall lean backwards while showering to show thine glory of thine breasts heavenward

If you are having trouble thinking of rules, just think of the things you really like to do and forbid people from doing them.

Rule Three: Make your Bible Big and Thick and Old Looking
No one believes in something that looks like it came right off a printing press. Make your Bible brownish with a slight moldy smell. Your Bible should also be extremely thick. Your god’s words will be much more believable if they are hand written in script. You can also make the last 2000 pages blank and tell your followers that once they are true believers that the text will become legible. Sit back and wait to hear what bullshit the true believers come up with in your god’s name.

Rule Four: No Chick Gods
Women are way too understanding to be gods. Your god should be a raging man god. Even if your god isn't the type that would have humans be made in his image (gasp), it should still be a male-esque plate of spaghetti / creature / misty-cloudly-like entity. I would avoid giving your god a full chest of hair. Stick with flowing locks or flames.

Rule Five: Your God kicks Other Gods Asses

I would highly suggest including passages where your god takes out false gods in a bar fight or gun battle. Describe other gods as pansies or misguided angels that quit your god’s team once they found out they couldn't make partner. Make sure that he doesn't destroy all of the false gods, just roughs them up a bit. OK, he can kill all but one of them, so that weak ass, false god can go back and tell everyone what a bad ass your god is.

Rule Six: Make an Awesome Afterlife

Why die and go to a cloudy place where you have to spend eternity with grandma? Instead, build an afterlife with roller coasters with no lines. Make the pure white robes optional. Why not have Sandals create the all inclusive afterlife with no kids? You must hint at the possibility that your followers can peer into the showers of the living to ensure they are following the list of rules.

I also highly suggest you allow your followers' pets into your heaven. You'll get a lot more followers this way. And less kids crying and hating your god.

Rule Seven: Create a lot of loopholes
Sin is bad. Sin in the name of your god is GOOD!
It is forbidden to kill… everyone but non-believers.
You cannot eat cheese with a fork… unless it is the third Wednesday after the second Tuesday.

It’s OK if your story has a lot of holes in it. 500 years from now, they’ll just say that some of the documentation is missing and that your god is infallible and this is a test.

Not so Free Child Identification

Nothing is free. Especially not fingerprinting for your child by Western-Southern Financial Group. You might see them at local festivals or fairs advertising that they will provide a free ID for your child. Sounds great, right?

Basically this is a scam to sell life insurance. From their website:

“YES! I’d like to receive a free Child ID Card for my child(ren). I understand that an agent will contact me to schedule an appointment to create the Child ID Card(s). This appointment may include an insurance sales presentation.”

They say no purchase is required, but if you value your time, pass up on this offer.

Miss Sally had some nincompoop saleswoman, who showed up at the pre-school, run her around in circles for ten minutes, avoiding the question of whether this was really “free.” The woman finally admitted that Western-Southern would be contacting the parents to discuss life insurance opportunities. Miss Sally sent her packing.

If you are going to be out and about with your child, keep a couple of photos handy with their name and stats written on the back just in case they do wander off. If your kids are like mine, they look different every six months and the ID cards quickly become outdated.

Washington Gas Light Company Sends $0.01 check

@athikerpickle got a check from the Washington Gas Light Company for $0.01. One measly cent.


They sent it in the mail which cost $0.44. They also processed the check which probably cost a few cents as well. If you think about the trees cut to make the paper and the chemicals to make the magnetic ink and carbon footprint of the processing; this check for one cent put a hole is the ozone the size of 2,486 football fields.

Luckily for the Washington Gas Light Company, they probably own a logging company, a magnetic ink company and a company that will sell you carbon credits for a small, outrageous fee. In sending this check, they made $1.3 million dollars.

Thanks @athikerpickle!