Friday, April 30, 2010

In the Spirit of Mitch Hedberg

This is actually the worst of Hedberg's three comedy albums. Recorded live, it had a lot of material that was being tested for Hedberg's upcoming HBO special. His other CDs,
Strategic Grill Locations and Mitch Altogether are much more polished.

The last week or two have been pretty noteworthy. Instead of Jack Handy, it seems I was channeling the late master of paraprosdokians, Mitch Hedberg.
  • Two things I never learned in college were how to properly take Adderall and the Greek alphabet.

  • I thought someone parked a motorcycle in the little crosswalk between some handicapped parking spaces, but it turned out it was just a guy in a wheelchair. I felt bad and hoped he didn't see me staring, but then I realized he was a quadriplegic and couldn't turn his head. I still felt bad, but at least now I knew he couldn't see me staring.

  • Sometimes I like to stick a blueberry or a raisin inside a raspberry and pretend like I'm eating some new kinda fruit. Then I usually ask why I paid so much for some crappy fruit that tastes like two fruits I already had. What the fuck was I thinking?

  • I want to make a line of t-shirts exclusively for wolves. They'll all be black with pictures of my face straining and howling at a full moon.

  • My friend's car broke down today and started leaking some kinda green liquid on the ground. It was the first time I got to say, "Augh! I'm stepping in tranny fluid!" and it wasn't weird. That's a lie. It was completely weird. Just not as weird as the other times I have to say that.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

On Women

Men (and male impersonators), listen up. I am about to drop wisdom on you.

Granted, this is mediated by their individual personalities, but in almost all cases the more beautiful a woman is, the more she hates her feet.

And this is actually pretty understandable. Feet are, after all, pretty weird to look at. All boxy and trapezoidal. What are they doing down there? Fuckin' miracles all up in this bitch.

But see the logic in play: the more beautiful a girl is the fewer physical traits she has to complain about. At the very least, a woman cannot walk around actually saying that she thinks of herself as a Venusian goddess. All her friends would hate her for being such a shallow, conceded bitch.

However at the same time, I truly believe that until a woman achieves that level of bitchy hotness, psychologically she needs to be able to find something awful about her appearance to keep her in line, to keep her from being completely unlikeable, to have something to strive for and work towards. It's like an equilibrium of looks, keeping a mentally healthy level of body dysmorphia.

1) The more attractive the woman, the fewer unattractive physical traits.
2) Feet are weird.
.:/ A woman can always fall back on hating her feet.

Moreover, she's going to rely on this hatred for her pedis as she frightfully approaches the self-realization of critical hotness, that tipping point between giving up and becoming an egotistical whore and accepting small imperfections as natural and beautiful in their own way, allowing her to age gracefully and not turning into a slutty supernova.

Interestingly, it has recently been pointed out to me that shoes are absolutely adored by women for almost the opposite reason: shoes will always be designed to be cute.

Once a woman knows her shoe size, she'll pretty much never have to worry about not fitting into them perfectly.

A dress has to be taken in, let out, hemmed, pinned and all of this at the women of genes, weight, and even water retention, but shoes, shoes vary much less in design.

Even if a girl tries on a hundred dresses, once she has a dress she finds acceptable, even merely passable, there will be cute shoes available no matter what. Those shoes might be the saving grace of an entire outfit.

Men: never question your lady's shoes.

However, if you're still trying to find an in with a lady, I might recommend aiming a gentle put-down at her feet.

Try to work in an off-handed Daddy Issues comment at the same time. Works wonders.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

On Salt

I went grocery shopping the other day, pretty much entirely for sandwich finxin's, whole wheat and white bread, tomatoes, cheeses, roasted beasts and the like.

There are really only three guys who work the deli counter at our local A&P: Old Italian Guy, who always gives me a few slices of everything to snack on as long as it's not very busy; Young Latino Guy, who actually speaks perfect English and can handle orders in both metric and Imperial measurements and is always happy and talkative; and of course 14 Year Old Pudgy White Boy Who Never Remembers An Order, Can't Seal A Deli Ziplock Bag For Shit and Has Cost Me Many Dollars In Cheese Going Moldy Too Fast Who Always Calls Me "Sir."

If you don't already hate this kid as much as I do, he's basically one more testicle descending away from being this wonderful fellow:

However, this last trip was a bit more fun for me.

It was relatively busy and everyone was working at once. Obviously, I got stuck with Chubs and so made my order one piece at a time and slowly. Twice each. I began with 3/4 lb. of roast beef.

"Regular or salt-free?" he asked. (Not an unreasonable question.)

"Regular," I said.

"…Salt-free is on sale, though." Really? Have I already begun the physical metamorphosis fated me by my Yiddish grandpaternity? Have I taken on the appearance of a wrinkled, old diabetic who splurges at every opportunity to consume the same delicious sodium chloride which will one day raise my blood's pressure high enough to burst forth from its arterial prison and pool inside my brain cavity? Have I?

"No. Regular is fine," I assured Whitey.

As "The Beaver" sliced my beef (not a metaphor), something which he had to pause in to check if I had wanted a half-pound (wrong), I muttered under my breath:

"I LIKE salt."

This was apparently and I swear completely unintentionally hilarious, at least to the woman in line next to me. In her late twenties and shopping with someone who seemed to be her affable mother-in-law, she was young enough still remember how delicious bad food is but still old enough to appreciate the willfulness to relinquish adult responsibilities and malign annoying people in public.

Fuck that kid. I like me my salt.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On Bret Michaels

I opened up my BBC News feed yesterday morning to discover former Poison singer and reality show persona Bret Michaels has suffered a brain hemorrhage.

The linked article states that he has dizziness, blurred vision and is suffering from slurred speech.

So basically nothing has changed for Bret Michaels since 1988.

Monday, April 26, 2010

On Fruit

This is why we can't have nice things.

Seriously, guys? Seriously?

We didn't have enough fucked up fruits and plants and shit lining our grocery store shelves already, we had to go and genetically splice strawberries with pineapples?

It's a strawberry. It's already delicious. You don't need to forcibly crossbreed it with a pineapple, admittedly already another delicious fruit, if not one with a somewhat jaded past. (I can't seem to find it, but I still feel at some point I've covered the history of the pineapple. Quick refresher: pine cones were called pineapples because they hung in pine trees like fruit. Then someone discovered a fruit, called in a pine-y apple and the two were called the same thing until some other guy said, "This is retarded. Let's just call the one that's actually a fruit an apple. The other one can be a cone or some shit.")


The point is we really didn't need this. Yeah, it sounds delicious and yeah, I'd love to get my hands on one and am willing to pay an exorbitant fee for it, but, guys. Guys. Really? Did we really need to make a bizarro-strawberry that tastes like a pineapple? It doesn't even taste like a combination of the fruits, which is an absolutely delicious grouping of flavors! It's just a very tiny pineapple with less peeling involved. (Which actually sounds wonderful. Maybe it's a fruit of convenience. You know, like those dog purses. Just slice up a few of these and a few real strawberries and voila, pretty fruit salad.)

Still, I really didn't need to deal with this in my life right now. You'd think it wouldn't affect me, but this is just one more act of humanity playing God that I'll need to justify in my world view.

And I mean I already feel like enough of an asshole when I open my fridge and put tomatoes into the little drawer marked "VEGETABLES" instead of the one that says "FRUIT."

Sunday, April 25, 2010

On Impossible Things

6 Things Which Are Impossible:
  1. Altering the coefficients of any of the four fundamental forces (gravity, electromagnetism and the strong and weak nuclear forces) within the confines of the three common physical dimensions, width, depth and breadth.
  2. Boiling distilled water at temperatures lower than 212˚F at sea level.
  3. Proving with any significance that we are, or at leas I myself am, not currently alive.
  4. Accelerating any subluminal mass to speeds greater than the value of c in a perfect vacuum.
  5. Lowering the temperature of anything anywhere ever to or less than -273.15˚C, or raising it above (1.416785(71) × 1032)˚C.
  6. Me ever enjoying a Sandra Bullock movie.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

On Survivalism

My friend, Dan, has a very nice little second-story apartment one town over. I keep meaning to ask what he pays in rent, but at our age I feel like that's the equivalent of asking a woman over thirty for her exact height and weight.

Anyway, Dan lives right above his landlord, who actually has a pretty sizable property. In his backyard he happens to have a large, fenced-in run and a coop. The man keeps chickens. Like a dozen of them. (There used to be more but now they are down to about nine. No one's sure what happened, exactly.)

He also has a single, needs-to-be-shorn gray sheep.

Oh, and three little goats.
Yes, goats. Not necessarily pygmy goats, but pretty small little goat creatures.

Dude also taps the trees on his property for his own maple syrup. He's like some kind of crazy-awesome, low-level survivalist. Dude's like half set for the end of the world: wool, eggs, milk, meat, maple syrup; he's like his own warm and fuzzy IHOP.

When the revolution comes, he will be the first against the wall.

Assuming, of course, that the wall is made of delicious pancakes.

Friday, April 23, 2010

On Blu-Ray Options

So I've seen a lot of ads saying Jim Cameron's Avatar came out today, but I'm pretty sure I saw it on sale this past Tuesday. Maybe that was just the DVD or something, I don't really know.

What I do know is I have to buy this movie eventually, just because I really did enjoy it that much. The question becomes do I buy it now, on pretty, pretty Blu-Ray, or do I wait and buy it a few months down the line when it probably gets released in 3D? Will 3D matter on a home theater system? Was the movie only awesome because I saw it in 3D on a giant IMAX screen?

Screw it, I'll probably just pick up copies of Ferngully and Pocahontas for $6 each. Same difference

Thursday, April 22, 2010

In the Spirit of Jack Handy II

I'm sick so I'm not even going to try to think up something new and witty. Here's some thoughts from my Twitter that didn't quite pan out into full blogs:

  • Getting in shape and getting fat are exactly the same in that after a while you start to find parts of your body that weren't there before.

  • I want a "LIVELONG" bracelet. It's only for healthy people with no threatening illnesses who won't likely die soon. Also it's for Vulcans.

  • Outside college, pajama or "loungewear" bottoms are not an acceptable replacement for real pants. Neither are they a proper substitute for underwear.

  • I saw an internet video of a dog in zero-gravity and asked myself aloud, laughing, "Why would you DO that?!" Accidentally described whole internet.

  • Brendan Fraser, I know I say this every time you come out with a new movie, but Brendan Fraser, please stop making movies.

  • I'd be more inclined to use marijuana if you could just chew the damned stuff. And if it tasted like a brownie. Or was a brownie. You know what, forget the weed and just get me a brownie.

  • I went to the mall looking to get new glasses, but the selection sucked, so I wandered the mall and found a $20 bill on the ground in the middle of the floor. Then I watched an MTV T.V. pilot for the Nielsen company and got $15. Basically, I think God wants me to be unemployed.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

On Race Relations

Society screwed up when it tried to make "nigga" a socially acceptable term of endearment.

What we should have done is started also calling poor, uneducated, shiftless white criminals "niggers."

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

On 420 and The Munchies

In honor of today's date, 4/20, the international day of smoking shit-tons of weed and getting high as a mother, I've decided to share a story I realized that, until now, I've somehow neglected to tell.

My friend Jay has wondered, every year around this time, whether Wendy's has April 20th circled on their calendars as their busiest day of the year.

Several years ago we attempted to put their "Double Your Beef For 89¢" policy to the test.

The thinking was simple:
  • A Wendy's Classic Double (two 1/4 lb. beef patties) costs more than 89¢ more than a Wendy's Classic Single (only one 1/4 lb. patty). Therefore, every time someone ordered a Classic Single with Double Beef, Wendy's lost money.
  • Would "THEY" allow a patron to order their (then) largest sandwich, a Classic Triple, with Double Beef, thereby losing several dollars in the transaction?
After much speculation, we tested the theory. Jay bellied up to the counter and asked the young albino at the register if he could receive a Classic Triple, but with Doubled Beef. The man was dumbfounded.

"I- I don't know," the boy said. "Like, I really don't know if the computers can do that. We can … we can try?"

So they tried. The young man raised his hand and pressed into the keypad tentatively the button for a Classic Triple Meal, then, as if going in for his first play at second base and fully expecting to get slapped, brought his pointer down on the key marked "DBL BF."

A pleased chirp sounded from the machine. Everyone eased their cringing and opened an eye to peak down at the computer. The world had not imploded. The bill did not divide by zero. Everyone was safe.

"Oh. Okay. Awesome," the albino sighed. "Medium or large?"

"Oh, large," Jay replied.

"Any drink?"

"Uh, Coke? No ice?"

"Okay. Anything else?"

"Yeah, a small frosty and a five-piece nuggets?"

The albino choked on a giggle.

"And can I get barbecue and honey mustard for those?"

"Sure," the boy still giggled, trying to remain professional as he read back the order. "Oh, did you want cheese on that?" his smirk was hard to hide.

"Oh, yeah! Thanks!" Jay exclaimed. At this our young albino friend nearly fell over. Tears huddled in the corners of his eyes as he was paid by a group of men each chipping in a few dollars for Jay's daring meal.

The rest of us began to order as Jay's pound-and-a-half of sizzled beef was prepared. In the middle of one order the little Ecuadorian woman working the grill came out. Standing just 4'10" or so, she warbled to her pale companion, pointing at Jay's order glowing green on her progress screen.

"Hoe meny patty he wan?"

"Uh, he wants six."

"Fo?" She held up four minute fingers.

"No, six."




"SIX." We held up extra fingers. We said "seis" in our limited, high school Spanish accents, put up three fingers on each hand and then smashed them together in mime of a delicious nuclear fission.

"SEECE!?" the lady finally understood? "He wan seece patty?! No! No," she turned to Jay, "You cannoh hah seece patty. Fo," she held up four fingers again. "You can hah fo patty."

We argued on principle; the computer accepted the order, the ad held no restrictions. We demanded our monstrosity burger.

The assistant manager came out. The Manager manager came out. He claimed the deal only applied to Classic Singles and Doubles, then invoked the participating locations clause that supersedes all custom orders.

We were informed we could have a Triple, a Double doubled, or nothing at all.

Assholes, we each chipped in another dollar each and ordered Jay two Triples.

When we sat down, Jay pealed the top bun off one sandwich and the bottom off the other, slamming them together and finally making the Classic Sextuple we had all craved.

As he ate, Jay found the condiments began melting the buns off his mega-burger. In fact he burned through both sets of buns, beef juice and lettuce water dripping down his hands and leaving him with nothing but a meaty, moist collection of ketchup-and-cheese flavored goo.

The idea to impale it all with an extra straw was, I believe, my idea. Forcefully skewered, Jay regained the use of one hand to quench his thirst and wipe the beef leavings from his face. With no other patrons in the restaurant, the wait staff looked on in fear and amazement.

As Jay sat, staring at the last few bites, Dean said the following:

"Jay! I had to be home ten minutes ago and I still have to drop you off first."

"Okay," Jay said, eyes bleary and sweating beef.

"No," said Dean, "You live in the opposite direction. I;m going through the drive-thru to get my food and then I'm honking. If you're not out there in thirty seconds, I'm leaving."

"Alright … Dude!"

"What?" Dean was half-way out the door.

A smile crept over Jay's meat-intoxicated face. "Get me a five-piece?"

For the last five bites, Jay got into a rhythm of eating, swallowing, and then setting the remainder down to go into the bathroom just in case he was going to throw up the whole mess. Shockingly, this never happened and Jay finished his meal to the applause of all his friends and everyone behind the counter at Wendy's.

The point of this story, kiddies, is you can eat absolutely insane, incredible things without ever getting stoned.

But why start a fire with twigs when you've got a perfectly good lighter in your pocket?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Sandwich Alternatives to the KFC Double Down

I can't believe I actually got two blogs out of this monstrosity.

Sandwich Alternatives to the KFC Double Down:
  • The Blackjack: 5 ounces of garlic mashed potatoes held between two 8 oz. Black Angus strip steaks, marinated in Jack Daniels BBQ sauce and fire grilled to perfection.

  • The Russian Roulette: a Wendy's Classic Triple with "Double the Beef" option; six 1/4-lb (precooked wt.) all-beef patties, one of which is infused with a randomly selected dipping sauce for the extra adventurous eater. Served with two 5-piece nuggets and a large Coke (no ice). [Also called "The Jay O'Neill."]

  • The Slot Player: a $3 buffet voucher good for any cold sandwich, small soft drink or juice and any small bag of chips or an apple. Includes triple-cherry cobbler.

  • The Prize Fighter: a super-heavy weight 88 oz porterhouse, served with absolutely nothing but your own sweat as it drips, beef-scented from your brow down onto your plate.

  • A heart attack sandwiched between a couple of mild strokes.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

On Childhood Grudges

You remember those little multi-colored polished rocks you could buy in museums and science stores or random Native-American-themed rest stops along a dusty highway? Those pretty little pebbles in every color imaginable?

I fucking hate those things. Fuckin' rocks look like candy, but you can't fucking eat them.

And now I want candy. Great.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

On Ed Hardy

I went online to buy an Ed Hardy tee, but I couldn't.

I couldn't find anything larger than a child's medium.

Friday, April 16, 2010

On Visceral Reactions

Everyone's familiar with the phrase "turns my stomach."

You see your ex walking down the street, not looking like a cracked-out beggar and suddenly you're nauseated. Your heart falls into your guts, your stomach flips around and its acid spills into your chest cavity, burning and boiling your appendix and more useful organs.

I recently realized I stopped getting that feeling. I think it's emotional growth on my part.

Now when I see a certain ex, I only get tunnel-vision, the sweats, chills and my sinuses dry out.

It's like a tragic romance head cold.

Pop some pseudoephed and you're fine. Maybe drink some OJ.

I'm thinking about marketing some over-the-counter nasal spray for this. See your ex? Feel those dry and itchy eye symptoms? Huff a squirt.

I'm thinking of getting Antonio Banderas to voice the little bee guy.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

On the KFC Double Down

I ate one of these monstrosities today.

I have to assume it's some kind of secret Illuminati plot against humanity, designed to slow our hearts and weaken the immune system. The only word I found circling my head as I ordered and stared at this abortion of culinary science was "insidious." The only word I had to describe the taste was "delicious."

Like all great-but-terrible ideas, and some children, this was a purely impulse decision, and I can easily lay about 63% of the blame of Dean McGowan, who claimed that this product could be a new addiction to replace smoking. I could not comment, as my eyes were held wider in awe than they are naturally prone to open.

You see I was on my way to the bathroom this around 6 p.m. when my phone rang. Still tethered by its charging cable, I halted to answer it rather than bring it with me. It was Dean calling.

"Yo, are you near a restroom?"

"Er, yes? Yes, I'm home."

"Oh. But were you about to go to the bathroom at all?"

"Actually, yeah. Why? Are you coming over?" This requires a bit of explanation: Dean has the amazing ability to coincide his visits to my apartment with the precise moments my stomach decides it has done its job for the day and is dumping its workload onto my colon.

"I'm driving home now, yeah. I just– I felt the need to call you and I thought it meant maybe you were in the bathroom already. Can I come over?"

"Yeah, sure. Just, um, give me a minute? In the the bathroom?"


The actual bad decisions came shortly thereafter. We sat around talking for a bit, I inquiring into how Dean's job was, he inquiring on how I manage to possess such nice things while remaining a professional slacker. (The answer is to be surprisingly boring 80% of the time and incredibly interesting only around other people.)

Dean mentioned he was probably going to go get a KFC Double Down for dinner just to try it. I said I'd wanted to do that. He asked if I wanted to come. I said I just needed to put on a clean shirt and a belt.

Sparing the grizzle-y details, the sandwich is actually fairly tasty. "Colonel Sauce" is essentially honey mustard heavy on the mayo, and one piece of chicken will break in half from the outset, but otherwise it's all rather decent. Only 540 calories isn't too bad, but it's the 1300mg of sodium that'll kill you. I substituted the potato wedges in my meal for some coleslaw, so I think I might be safe.

Dean's Choice Quote: "The question isn't how someone came up with this idea, it's how no one came up with it until 2010."

Dave's Choice Quote: "This is exactly why the terrorists want to kill us."

Dean then asked, "Because we're happy?" and insinuated that all women were terrorists, angry at men for being happy. They're terrorists, we're free citizens. I believe the direct quote was, "All women are terrorists. They're mad at men for being happy. They're terrorists, we're free citizens." That is very true, because women would absolutely hate this Orwellian chicken sandwich.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sometimes I Amuse Myself In the Simplest Ways

The Simpsons' Prof. Frink once described the random oscillations in a Corn Popper toy to a class of kindergartners. When I child plaintively asked, "Mnff … can I play with it?" Frink replied immediately, "NO! You couldn't possibly enjoy it on as many levels as I do."

That's how I feel about certain things. Sometimes, it's not about only enjoying things that are very smart, but about enjoying the simple, even stupid things on more levels than dumber people.

Hence this:

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

On Thinking of the Children

The South Korean government is proposing steps to set a sort of curfew to restrict the number of hours children spend playing online video games.

Unsurprisingly, I have an opinion about this.

But surprisingly, for once this opinion is conservative, well-informed and personally experienced.

In college I like to think I was an excellent starter roommate. I was neat, pleasantly (if not neutrally) smelling, I had a large stock of movies which could be borrowed without question and over the three years I spent in my super-conveniently located dorm room, I became busier and busier with outside work and shenanigans, such that I was often never around during daylight hours and much of the evening. In short terms, I was cool when I was around, but mostly unobtrusive.

However, I personally have to admit there were two roommates I did not take to very well. (I only actively liked one, but that's beside the point.)

One was a twenty-six year old Korean student who had his own apartment in Vermont, but was forced to live on-campus for a semester as a new/transfer student. He was fine, except for when he made the room smell like rice and fish by cooking with his little hot pot. Since I'm the one with an uncommon aversion to seafood, this I allowed to pass by unmolested. In return, I got the room to myself nearly every weekend when he went back to his actual home to see his girlfriend.

The other Evil Ex-Roommate was also Korean. Before you start to rag on me for being some kind of crazed M*A*S*H reenactor with bents against the entire population of Seoul, understand there was a very awesome temporary roommate for a semester in between these two who was also Korean and had zero bad habits. He was awesome, and got along swimmingly with my other close Korean friend. None of these friends ever met my Japanese or Indian friends, but based on thousands of years of living on the Asian continent together, I have to assume they could only be friends. Right?

Anyway, the short of it is this last kid was a fat little butterball or awkward, fowl-smelling otaku, with no drive to become a better, more social person. I saw more man-boob that year as he sat indoors with a fan pointed directly at his sweating convalescence than I care to remember.

In fact the ill-wind that blew off this boy's body circulated through the room thank to the fan, placed mere inches from his sagging cleavage, and made the entirety of our domicile wreak of sadness and rice.

The one truly racist part is that I never once saw him eat rice, let alone cook it.

What brings me back to my min point was this: this boy sat in front of his computer all day playing side-scrolling Korean RPGs with his friends back in Korea, on Korean time. I'd be trying to go to sleep at 3 a.m. after hours of thoughtfulness and legitimate work and this lousy freshman is getting up after skipping class all day so he can play seven hours of what looked like a Warcraft 1 knock-off with his fat little Eastern Hemisphere counterparts. I'm not begrudging the kid friends, but seriously, dude, I don't need to see your fat ass half-naked in front of a glowing screen at night almost-silently clicking away at some giant lobster monsters. All I want is to be able to get to sleep while it's still dark and quiet, wake up without the door always slamming and maybe just once come back to find a note the three times you go out for a LAN party so I know if I have enough time to Google "big ol' boobies" before you get back.

So yeah, I support these South Korean Video Game Curfew Reforms. But too late for this guy. Too late, indeed.

Monday, April 12, 2010

On Business Models

"Do these frames look alright on me? I can't tell
because I'd need fucking glasses to see."

Last night I finally lost one of the little nose pads from my glasses.

It happens often enough, but I can usually find the little thing without much panic and after little searching. It's not even really that bothersome to wear my glasses without a pad. The right one has a tendency to come off if I even pull off a t-shirt too quickly, but the left one sticks in place fairly well. I can get by with just left for a day or two.

Anyway, today I went over to LensCrafters to get a new pad. They're always very nice about it and even give me a little lens cleaning and realignment before sending me on my merry way.

I asked if I could maybe get a few spare nose pieces since the right one tends to pop off a lot, but the lady at the counter told me, "No, sorry, we can't sell those."

Here's what I don't understand: They don't sell those.

LensCrafters offers as a special service free adjustments to any pair of glasses, even pairs they didn't sell you. It's a draw to bring in more business with pleasant, speedy, convenient service.

But why can't you just give me a couple of those free nose pads? It's not like you charge anyone for them. Hell, I've only bought glasses from LensCrafters before. If you're giving a product away for free, what's the sense in making me come back every time I lose one to waste your time sticking a new one on it? Do you really want me to go out and buy like a dozen for myself from a wholesaler? You'll never see me again, LensCrafters.

Except if I come in before May. That flier you gave me about 30% off frames-and-lenses is actually a really good deal if I can combine it with AAA.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

On Fertility Treatments

400 BABIES!!!*

I'm fine with people going to great lengths to naturally produce genetic offspring, but I've got to tell you that when you implant, like, nine fertilized embryos and are surprised when more than two take root, you're an idiot and kind of an asshole.

Sure, you're excited to have babies. We get that. You couldn't have any and suddenly you've got two or three and it's awesome for you. However, there are some of us who are both young and fertile, who view children as almost antithetical to where we want to be in life right now.

That's why when we see your "TRIP-LETS" license plate on the back of your red mini-van we get annoyed. You have children. We get it. Stop looking for attention.

I saw your three teenage daughters in their nearly-identical green plaid flannel shirts and their skinny-fit, dark wash hipster jeans, and none of them looked very happy about still dressing identically at their age. Just stop it. Being a parent has consumed your identity and at this point those of us without progeny to support are just unnerved by your willingness to let this happen.

The chest-burster scene from Alien still seems a bit too metaphorical for us.

*Babies brought to you by PowerThirst Energy Drink. Yes, it still exists.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

A Weekend Thought

Something to mull over this weekend:

The phrase, "I'm nowhere near as drunk as you think I am," is consistently followed by the speaker vomiting in front of people for an uncomfortable period of time.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Things Which Are Only Appropriate to Say In Bed Or While Working Out

Things Which Are Only Appropriate to Say In Bed Or While Working Out:
  • "You really want to feel this."

  • "Feel how tight that is."
  • "Put your hands under your buttocks."

  • "Both legs up in the air … that's it!"

  • "None of these moves will hurt you if you do them right."

  • "It's only eight minutes a day!"

    and I'm almost afraid to say it, but:

  • "Do you feel the burn?!"

Thursday, April 8, 2010

On Black Comedy

This will be another of those rants where my point will seem entirely invalid simply because I was unfortunate to enjoy a white-middle-class upbringing. Well screw that. As Binghamton alum Dustin Glick so concisely explained, this is an ad hominem attack of crappy logic.

My point is this:

I hate black comedy that relies on the audience being black to be funny.

To a lesser extent I also hate George Lopez and the few Hispanic comedians who awkwardly try to force diversity into their acts. And anyone from the Blue Collar tours.

But sadly for the black man, who as already suffered so much, he is forced to endure the likes of Martin Lawrence, Tracey Morgan and the train wreck that is the Wayans brothers, forever stigmatizing the differences between the ways white people and black people walk, drive and eventually have unsatisfying sex.

The problem is this: if you take anything that's moderately amusing and change a character's race, it doesn't make it funnier. Dumb people seem to think this is the case, though. Buddy Cop films were great when Danny Glover was just starting to get to old for that shit, because suddenly the black guy was the rational one and the white guy was insane. That was fine. For a couple movies. Like eight later? Not so much. There certainly wasn't a need for three Rush Hour movies. Even one 90-minute session of Chris Tucker is a bit much.

I should differentiate this kind of travesty from worthwhile race-based comedy. Certainly there's something to be said for the hilarity in awkward social interactions. Certainly there are funny aspects unique to African-American culture, and these should be explored. The problem is relying on shared ethnicity for the entirety of a bit's comedic content is dangerous, both as a stereotyping precedent and in gambling your whole stake on only one, low-brow form of joke.

Here's my argument in proof:

Death at a Funeral (2007) was a terrific "black comedy" in the original respect: it is funny but also serious, morbid and thought-provoking. However it was British, so most Americans never saw it and only about 80% of the ones that did understood the sounds coming out of the actors' mouths.

Now, Death at a Funeral (2010) is the exact same movie, except now it was made in America and everyone is black. And when I say it's "the exact same movie" I mean it's the same premise, same dialogue at points, and they even use the exact same dwarf actor in the exact same role. The only difference is that now every character is black and there's a whole bunch of lame nods to them being black. It is not incidental to the plot, it seriously changes much of the story as the cast is comprised of Zooey Saldana (the black "It Girl" since Avatar came out), Martin Lawrence (the skeevy, unscrupulous brother), Tracey Morgan (the possibly retarded black stereotype), Danny Glover (the ornery, old black uncle), and apparently Luke Wilson and James Marsden as the unobtrusive, pasty white characters.

The only saving grace I can see is Chris Rock, a staple of serious but also humorous racial discourse, portraying the protagonist, a more normal character appalled by the hideous behavior of everyone he's related to. Hopefully, this attitude will be reflected and anyone who sees this film will understand this is supposed to carry over into a critique of their behavior in general. (Hint: it will not.)

I can only hope that the zeitgeist forgets this Death at a Funeral as fast as it did the last one, then everyone can go back to listen to Chris Rock talking about the difference between black people and [a word I can't cay but they watch a lot of UPN which incidentally airs reruns of Chris Rock's show which is basically The Black Wonder Years but we won't blame him for that].

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

On Accents

For the most part, I tend to get more annoyed than anything else if someone intimates that I have a funny sounding accent.

I'll freely admit that I have a bit of a New York cut to my voice, but I assure you it's only out of laziness and it in no way sounds funny. In fact that only people who could pick up on it within the U.S. are those who have much heavier regional accents which would be openly mocked in New York, likely through the use of name-calling, questioning of sexuality and perhaps metaphors for corn fucking.

Yes, I have something of a lazy tongue. It does not like to work hard and sometimes, in a comfortable environment, it is perfectly willing to give up precision for expedience and minimum effort. A consonant or two might get dropped, an odd N swallowed here or there. If I am suitably drunk, I apparently drop down into a full-on Brooklyn accent, which is somewhat disconcerting as I have never lived in Brooklyn and my family exclusively comes from The Bronx, and even then only two generations back. Depending on which lineage you choose, I'm either the third or fifth generation to be born and raised in my small town. But I digress.

As I was born in a small town in Westchester, New York, and as I was raised Jewish as a condition of my parents' protracted divorce process, I was bar-mitzvahed, the up-shot to which is basically receiving a free year of public speaking and diction classes.

Frankly, when I have the time to formulate a full response before having to speak, I can enunciate to the back row of any room, pause and punch on par with presidential candidates, alliterate most eloquently and defer any semblance of provincialism from my thoughts and mannerisms.

And I say this now: I can speak without any accent whatsoever.

Any accent. I don't care what the British or Professor Henry Higgins say, Americans speak English the way it's supposed to sound. If you were to pronounce every syllable as it should sound according to modern linguistic phonetics it would come out sounding like a West Coast news anchor (who are incidentally trained to remove all accent and speak correctly). The British swallow every end consonant and depending on class and region distort every single vowel sound in the most ghastly ways. There's a reason it's easier for Englishmen to put on a fake American "accent" than it is for an American to intone a believable British accent: we have to say things wrong in a precise way, they merely have to say everything correctly for once.

Unfortunately my argument loses something of its edge. As it stands, my friends and I have spent so much time together that we have complimented the little off nuances in our speech patterns, and unfortunately nearly all of us come from boisterous, Irish upbringings.

Jay, for instance will invariably return from his yearly family visits to Boston with an inability to pronounce the letter R.

"Aw, dammit, I left my lighter in the cah."

"The cah?"

"Dammit, shut the fuck up."

Sadly, we've all adopted this to a lesser, year-round extent. I recently discovered how Irish my group of friends are: Dave Zucker ("Murray" on my mother's side), Dean Thomas Luke McGowan, Daniel Murray, Mac Russel, Terrance Kennedy, James "Jay" Connor Michael O'Neill MacDunough of the Clan Brae. Dropped outside Boston College I am absolutely certain we could not only survive penniless for days, but do so smiling and drinking.

It's weird how much we were affected by listening to Dropkick Murpheys, Flogging Molly, and watching The Boondock Saints 837 times through high school.

Especially considering all my friends are Yankees fans.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

On School Uniforms

I just saw one of those half-commercials that get played in the five seconds of dead air between one nation-wide commercial and a short local one. This one was for, I'm pretty sure, "," a proprietor of online college degree-like things.

To their defense, the commercial itself was not poorly executed. A young, sexy girl of what was apparently the half-Asian persuasion, clad in pajamas and a spaghetti strap tank top in sensuous magenta lay on her stomach in bed, feet curled up and chatting with me like discussing getting my bachelor's degree over the internet is her favorite type of foreplay.

All believable.

Except she said the following before getting cut off by an iO Digital Cable ad:

"Every day, thousands of college students attend classes in their pajamas … over the internet!"

Now don't get me wrong, this is entirely true and I would buy a full new wardrobe of pajamas if I thought that's what this girl wanted of me. But the problem is every day thousands of college students attend classes in their pajamas in public. Yes, many colleges have online-courses, but pretty much any class that takes attendance before 3 p.m. is guaranteed to contain at minimum 5% students in cotton pants that don't possess pockets but do possess a draw string.

Of these students, 40% are guys who have already or will later that day be running down campus to the free gym. 18% are overweight girls too tired from their futile efforts to get in shape to truly care anymore about their appearance on a day-to-day basis. The remaining 42% are insanely attractive sluts recovering from nights of debauchery where their drink of choice was more accurately described by its color than by an actual name or its component ingredients.

I miss college.

Monday, April 5, 2010

An Open Letter to Tiger Woods

According to this article by the venerable Chris Harnick, Tiger Woods had to miss his son's first birthday because he was in sex rehab and he feels bad.

It took a while, but this was he final cog in the vast machine that was my thoughts and feelings on the matter of Tiger Woods and Golf. As such, I hereby address my concerns in "An Open Letter to Tiger Woods."

Dear Tiger Woods,

We still don't care about golf. Try all you might, we will never care about golf. There is no drama to golf and any attempt to instill that drama into the game will just remind everyone how boring and detached from the rest of life golf actually is.

You are a good golfer, maybe the best. However we still don't care. We liked you as a freak show attraction: "The Crazy-Good Golfer of Indeterminate Ethnicity But We're Pretty Sure He's Some Kind of Black Or Brown Or Something." That was fun. You shamed a bunch of racist old white men by outclassing them at their own sport. But that's like saying you like Rosa Parks because you like how good she was at sitting and not listening to other people.

You are a talented golfer. Now stop pretending that you matter to anyone other than retirees.

Please stop having press conferences and preempting actual news.

Everyone Under the Age of 60

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter! - A Sunday Mini-Blog

Easter is the one extra day each year when young sluts can try and get their money's worth out of that playboy bunny costume they bought last Halloween.

I'm sure Jesus is very proud of you, sluts. I know I am.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

On Tech News

This week everyone's pretty excited for the iPad debut, which is now completely overshadowing earlier news that the iPhone can this year expect major updates in both hardware and software, including a likely release (of a possibly lesser model) to CDMA networks like Verizon.

Yet once again I already know what I'm excited about. The iPad can suck it. I don't need one.

What I am going to need is some of the apps that develop for it over the next couple years. First up? The new Netflix app which supposedly will be available for iPhone and iPod Touch shortly.

Why? Because when it comes out everyone will suddenly have access to free streaming movies over WiFi networks, and that means that within another year they'll have access to free streaming movies over 3G and 4G networks, and that means cloud computing will take over video entertainment forever. When iPhones can stream any TV or film instantly, that's game over for a lot of people, but it's also an awesome step into a future that's trying desperately to make up for the fact that it didn't get us jet packs. Remember that scene in Family Guy's "Stewie Griffin: The Untold Story" where some guy gets Mork and Mindy beamed straight into his head? Yeah, it'll be like that.

What I find hilarious is that you get the app for free and your own Netflix account for like $8 a month. So worth it. And yet I still just stole Dean's loggin ID and password so I can watch things for free.

Ironically, he stole that password from the account he bought his girlfriend for Christmas last year. What I'm saying is, eventually we're all just going to steal someone else's Netflix account.

Friday, April 2, 2010

On Hot Pockets

Hot Pockets, Jim Gaffigan's favorite food-like product of lyrical self-reference, have a new product for which they are jamming the airwaves: hamburger Hot Pockets.

Yes, they've gone the extra mile to break apart the mystery meat in their oddity-filled pasty crusts. Ostensibly this is so we don't have to chew as much.

What bothers me is that they're not really marketing this as a product to be desired. Instead they're taking the more modern approach, that is selling us on an emotion that makes us feel better than everyone else. They're selling us not-racism.

There's not even a veil over it. Hot Pockets is comparing it's the method by which you eat their product, hands-only, with other qualities that have experienced unwarranted social injustice, i.e. race, gender and sexuality.

They can't even include a black guy in the commercial, because then we'd be wondering if all the "foodist" fuddy-duddies were just bigots. Of course they obviously couldn't include any gays, as no self respecting homosexual is going to set foot anywhere near a Hot Pocket unless it's greaseless, vegetarian and stuffed with a spinach and artichoke cream sauce. Or hummus.

Now, I'll admit one of my favorite internet images of all time is the picture of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a delicious frozen orange treat simply captions, "I HAVE A DREAMSICLE."

But this is just a step too far. I'm supposed to like Hot Pockets filled with granulated, pre-processed beef(?) sauteed in its own grease and non-dairy cheese substitute because other white people fucking feel bad?

No, I'm sorry. Yeah, that whole slavery thing sucked. Yeah, Christians fucked a lot of people over. Constantly. Still do. But you know what? That wasn't me. In fact I'm Jewish. We did the whole slavery thing ourselves so that second trip around can't even be considered our fault. The rest of my family's non-practicing Protestants.

And frankly even they were poor as fuck. Not like they could have afforded a slave.

Although I've always wondered why our Southern Italian family caries an African-only genetic blood disorder. Great Uncle Othello always keeps mum about it.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Bonus Blog: On April Fools

April Fools' Day was established by the Christian church in an effort to mock the predominantly pagan peasantry who continued to celebrate the New Year according to old calendars around the beginning of Spring instead of by the brand new Christian calendar. This is also why Easter uses pagan fertility symbols of rabbits and eggs at this time of year. Christians coopted the fun stuff and made you call everything by their names so they could bring you into the fold all sly like.

Christians were assholes.

Anyway I don't usually do anything for April Fools.

I'm pretty sure that's a lie, but honestly if I ever attempt anything it's usually not that epic. Frankly, I was pretty well sated all through college just by the newspaper's Fun Page shenanigans each year. Especially since I was the one meticulously running and planning everything those last two years.

Plus I guess all those times I helped torment the still wriggling sushi out of Evan helped. I'm not sure I ever admitted to covering his whole desk, everything on it, and everything (including his open-but-full bottle of booze) in it in aluminum foil. One roll goes a long way.

Sure, I cleaned it all off, but I then molded it into an accurately sculpted life-size bust of his head.

Of course that's just because he pissed me off. That head guarded the Ball Pit (also my doing) until it mysteriously disappeared.

I'm pretty sure the last legitimate prank I had came to me in a dream. That happened again more recently with a chocolate dessert recipe, but I'll tell you the first story because it comes out sounding a lot less gay.

My sophomore year of high school we would frequently meet before classes in a specific hallway where our lockers were.

Though, again, this was a lie. Half of us had lockers there. A few more of us just appropriated lockers not in use because it was more convenient.

Anyway we'd all meet there and wake up each day, which was an unfortunate routine as one day I found myself dreaming that exact routine. I awoke when I noticed three inconsistencies with reality. One: one of the classrooms across from us was big and brightly lit; in truth, this room was a special education classroom converted from an old, tiled men's room. (Possibly the worst P.R. move ever.) Second: I started making out with one of our female associates before classes, something that was not likely to happen both due to who she was and also the idea that I would have been making out with anyone in high school. Lastly, and I wish I could say it was this point that alerted me to my dream state and not the oddity of actual romance in my life, there was a lobster trundling into said bath-classroom.

I had mentioned this to my friends, who all thought it was a bit weird, but everyone forgot shortly. This was around the first week in March.

It occurred to me a few weeks later to be awesome.

On April 1, I got up early and took a special trip down to the grocery store's fish department.

The actual prank went horribly. My friend Jay saw me stuffing something into his locker, and simply began muttering, "No. No. No…," as he approached the thing. He opened the door and his face shifted as he left rationality behind for emergency response mode.

Clearly the decision was for me to move the live, squirming lobster one locker right into Dean's possession.

That also failed. Dean had to be led into opening his locker. Apparently he was cool with not being prepared for any of his classes that day.

As we argued now over what to do with a live lobster I giggled, though the decision was taken from us. Mrs. Carerra, the Spanish teacher arrived and scolded Dean and Jay for bringing a living creature onto school grounds.

I laughed harder.

She threatened them with detention for their crime, but settled on merely confiscating Mr. Snips. (Mr. Lawrence Snips.)

The actual hilarious part to this came much later. Lobster-in-the-locker isn't a masterpiece on it's own. As soon as we left the hallway I had to go to study hall, wardened over by Señora Carerra. As I walked in the door beaming she stopped me to ask why Dean and Jay brought a lobster to school. I happily told her I had done it. I was not going to share this credit.

Sra. Carerra was aghast. I was the only person in class not borderline retarded. How could I have done such a thing?

Well I asked her what would happen to the lobster, hoping I could perhaps bring it home for my crustacean-devouring mother. She simply said it was already thrown out, which I thought a bit callous to do to a perfectly boilable lobster.

It was only a few hours later at lunch when everything finally came together. Standing behind two other students in line I overheard them discussing the dearth of worthy pranks that year. "Somebody put a lobster in another kid's locker," one suggested.

"A lobster? Like a live lobster?" replied the other.

"Yeah, man. A live lobster."

"Awesome," he said with a shrug.

That was fucking worth it right there. It was simple, forewarned, indefensible and virulently discussable.

Plus, it didn't hurt Mrs. Carerra was seen that day smuggling a lobster bag into the teacher's lounge refrigerator.

Bitch ate my lobster.


On The Energy Crisis

I wanna see this plastered over t-shirts and Lauren Leto's blog by the end of the week, guys.