Wednesday, January 31, 2007

More Like Mountain Lying!

Mountain Lion Attacks Hiker in California

The mountain lion pounced on Jim during a hike in Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park in northern California. With Jim's head literally inside the lion's mouth, Nell began to beat the animal with a log.

All the while, Jim managed to talk to Nell.

“He said, 'There's a pen in my pocket. Get the pen and poke it in the eye,'" Nell said. "I jabbed it and expected it to go right into the eye socket. It went in a little way. It was like it was hitting this table."

It’s people like this that ruin it for the rest of us. Just last night I was late for my own girlfriend’s birthday, and now today I’m being force fed articles about wives saving their husbands from mountain lions? Let me guess – that makes you better than me. Why can’t people just act normal in circumstances like this? Like, as a rule, anything involving a mountain lion, you react by running. Mountain lion looks up from eating a deer carcass: Run. Mountain lion is seen sleeping in the shade of a large tree: Run. Mountain lion clenches jaw on husband’s face: Run. Doesn’t this make more sense?

In fact, are we so sure it did happen like this? I’m not saying he’s faking (the wounds look real enough), but I am saying, “Was anyone else there to see it?” Oh, no one? No camera? Just a jack rabbit and a prairie dog? Well how convenient because NEITHER OF THEM CAN SPEAK.

In lieu of these facts, I’m going to go with my version of events, which is as follows:

(Scene: Man bent over at the waist with his head in a mountain lion’s mouth. Wife is standing nearby.)

Man: “Oh my God, do something!”

Wife: “Do what? It’s a mountain lion, it’s not going to listen to me. Besides, what if it hurts me?”

Man: “And what, it’s not hurting me?”

Wife: “Why do you have to be so selfish? You should care about my safety.”

Man: “There’s a pen in my backpack – go get it and jab it in his eye.”

Wife: “Are you serious? That is the grossest thing I have ever heard. I am NOT going to . . . ew, I can’t even say it.”

Man: “Who’s being the selfish one now? My head is in a lion’s mouth and all you can think about is not getting your hands dirty.”

Wife: “Wait, I missed that last part. You’ll have to speak up.”

Man: “Probably because my head is in a lion’s mouth!”

Wife: “Probably what?”

Man: “You’re impossible. Now I hope this thing kills me.”

Wife: “Stop being so dramatic.”

Man: (trying to close lion’s mouth down tighter) “If I could just get this tooth into my neck . . .”

Wife: “Fine, go ahead. Ruin our hike. This is just like the time you were late for my birthday.”

Man: “Yeah, this is just like that.”

Wife: “I was standing there for half an hour and I couldn’t get in touch with you!”

Man: “There was a misunderstanding!”

Wife: “Oh don’t start again with the misunderstanding.”


Man: “Look, I messed up, OK? I know I did. But if you get my head out of this mountain lion’s mouth, I promise you it will never happen again.”

Wife: “Maybe I overreacted too . . .”

Man: “No, no. It was my fault. I should have been there. It was your birthday.”

Wife: “I know, but I was cranky, it had been a long day and I was stressed out from work and packing for the move . . .”

Man: “Honey? I’m losing a lot of blood here.”

Wife: “Right, OK. So I have to do the pen thing? Really? No other ideas?”

(The mountain lion sees an antelope out of the corner of its eye and lets go of the man’s head to go pursue it.)

The End.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Carnitas Burrito Causes Me To Rethink Global Warming

By and large, I am a huge fan of global warming. The way I see it, global warming is Earth’s way of saying, “Relax! Enjoy the weather!” as each rising degree in annual average temperatures serves as a stepping stone in a path towards a time and a place where we as a civilization can drink mojitos more than three months a year. Truly, Earth appreciates the old adage “Quality, not quantity.” As in, “200 warm years are better than 200,000 cold ones.”

But if the cold weather has one redeeming quality, besides sustaining the delicate balance of nature, it is this: I walked the five blocks down to Chipotle today for lunch and by the time I got there, my face frozen and my balance a little off because I couldn’t feel my feet, I braced myself for my entrance into what is usually, at this time of day, a mob scene – a line wrapped around the entire perimeter of the large room, tacos falling off trays, out of people’s faces, and workers frantically shoveling rice and beans into tortillas with a look on their face that says, “Maybe poverty isn’t as bad as people make it out to be . . .”

Today, however, as I rubbed my hands together and flung the door open, there it was in front of me. Nothing. Emptiness. The physical representation of everyone too warm to leave their offices. Four people on line and scarcely any diners at the tables. I rubbed my eyes like they do in the movies to make sure what they are seeing isn’t a mirage. Here it was, laid out in front of me like a Mexican offering, the ultimate benefit of actual winter-like temperatures: Inexpensive burritos, on demand. It’s enough to justify reinventing the mojito as a cold weather cocktail.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Back To Normal, Boring, Sexless Blog

sex week

Just like regular sex, Sex Week concludes much too quickly but with ultimate satisfaction (for me).

It seems everyone [who isn’t related to me] enjoyed the impromptu debauchery. And why shouldn’t they? If the main reason you read blogs at work is to distract you from having to do your work, what better topic than sex? Unless you work for a brothel or Deep Throat Productions, Inc., chances are sex is a deep departure from your daily grind (zing). And while obviously reading about it at your desk is way down the list of ways to enjoy sex:

1. Doing it with someone

2. Doing it with yourself

3. Watching people do it

4. Hearing people do it

5. Remembering a time when you did it

6. Listening to someone tell a story about when they did it

. . .

23. Reading about it

24. Writing about it

25. Drawing a picture of people doing it

still, as far as topics go you can’t do much better. (Indeed, sex ranks number one on my list of favorite things, followed closely by “drinking” and “watching TV” which aren’t really “topics” so much as “things to do when not having sex.” Number four on the list, “people giving me money,” really only happens on holidays, which is a shame because I enjoy it so much.)

While I am loathe to turn this into a sex blog (though feel free to describe it to your friends as a sexy blog) I do appreciate the enthusiasm and camaraderie the subject fostered. Someone suggested in the comments section that I do a sex Q&A, which actually is something I have thought about doing. Not strictly a sex Q&A, but a Q&A on anything – because I am genuinely smart (I graduated college) and though I may never take advice, I am awesome at giving it. I feel like answering readers questions is the best way to address the topics and issues that people really want to hear about. Plus, if you are too embarrassed to go to your parents with a question (“What would happen if I put my finger in my butt?”), you can come to me and get the answer (“You would turn gay.”) in the privacy of my blog on the internet.

Let’s consider this a trial run. Email me your questions*, and next Friday (if this works) will be the first “Q&A Friday.” If it doesn’t, next Friday will instead be “You Guys Suck Day.”


* Of course, all email address will be kept private, whether the question is of a personal, graphically embarrassing nature or not. You can even use a fake name, or one of those Dear Abby names like “Frustrated in Fresno.” But be advised that if you do I will assume that you are retarded. Email me!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

More Sexy News!

Iguana with permanent erection risks chop

Mozart, an iguana stuck with a permanent erection six days after a mating session at a Belgian zoo, may have to have his penis amputated if the condition does not improve.

Even if an amputation is deemed necessary, Mozart will still be able to reproduce, because male iguanas have two penises, a scientist added.

Unfortunately (for myself, my girlfriend, and modern science) I was born with only one penis. While I have done reasonably well for myself with my one, I can only imagine the joy of two. I think if I had two penises, here is what I would do:

Use the first one as usual, and use the second one to slap this guy across the face:

Sexy News!

German cannibal tells of fantasy

Armin Meiwes, accused of killing, dissecting and eating another man, has gone on trial in central Germany.

The 41-year-old computer technician is charged with murder, even though the victim [Mr Brandes] allegedly volunteered for his fate by replying to an internet advert.

Mr Meiwes told investigators he took Mr Brandes back to his home in Rotenburg, where Mr Brandes agreed to have his penis cut off, which Mr Meiwes then flambéed and served up to eat together.

Brooke: “That guy ate his own flambéed cock. I'm pretty sure I would think that was even grosser if I understood what flambéed meant.”


Brooke: “Oh, it's cock covered in alcohol -- delish!”

Me: “Did you not get to the part where you set it on fire?”

Brooke: “When you put the cock in your mouth, then you can decide how you want it prepared.”

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

A Post About Tea, So My Poor Mom Doesn’t Have To Read About Unusual Sex Practices Anymore

I’ve been drinking tea in the office and I’m afraid everyone is starting to think I am a pussy. Every time someone sees my pouring a cup of hot water in the kitchen they ask, “Not feeling well?” And while I guess I am feeling a little under the weather, it’s not like I’m standing there wrapped in a blanket with a thermometer in my mouth. So I usually say, “Yeah, I’ve got a bit of a cold,” to which they invariably say, only half-jokingly, “Well I’d better stay away from you!” to which I say completely seriously, “Yeah, you should!”

Anyway, the problem is that I’m enjoying drinking tea. So there is going to come a time when I am healthy again, and when I go into the kitchen in the morning and am surrounded by five corporate casually dressed zombies fighting over the coffee pot and I make myself a cup of tea, I’m not going to have an excuse anymore, and then I’ll be The Guy In The Office That Drinks Tea (Because He Thinks He’s Better Than Everyone Else).

So in trying to come up with a way to remain a “man of the people,” I thought of this: For the next few days, whenever I am asking for something in the office, instead of saying, “Can you hand me the tape?” I’ll extend my hand and say in a loudly obnoxious tone, “Tape me!” Or when I need the latest revision of a legal brief from a secretary, I’ll email her, “Margaret, brief me!” People always love a “that guy” around the office. “That guy” who clips his nails at his desk. “That guy” who wipes down his keyboard with an alcohol swab every morning. So I’ll be “that guy” who asks for things as though he were going through a mid-life crisis.

Then, when the time comes that I’m back to my old, healthy self and I go into the kitchen to make myself a cup of tea and all the zombies are giving me the look of a plebian crowd indignant to their bourgeoisie superior, I can hold out my cup of hot water to June the receptionist and say, “Tea bag me!”

Sike! Sex week continues!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Report: Americans “Eh” On Anal Sex

I’m finally getting around to reading the Esquire–Marie Claire tag team Sex Survey in the February 2007 issue of Esquire (stripped down version here). By and large there were no big surprises: Men masturbate more than women, Men pay for sex more than women, Women cheat less than men, HIV is still scary, blah, blah, blah. But then I came across this chart, and it just seemed odd to me:


I’m not going to pretend I’m an expert on the subject of anal sex (or women for that matter). But my guess is that there’s really no such thing as liking anal sex “a little.” It’s not like saying you like capers “a little” or Radiohead “a little.” There’s a dick in your ass. You probably have an opinion on it one way or the other.

Monday, January 22, 2007

I Only Got Far Enough To Decide That The Title Should Include A Pun On The Term “Rubber Stamp”

Ever since the fifth grade, when Richard Velazquez convinced me that if I wanted Jennifer Capobianco to like me I should write a rap song for her, I’ve never been one to take other people’s advice. Unfortunately, I will never forget the first line of the song, which went: “With her hair of golden brown and her eyes of blue / she makes me feel like I know what I’m doing,” which, looking back, is not only brilliant for its deft slant rhymes, but for its irony. If she truly made me know what I was doing, perhaps I would have known that a rap song wasn’t the quickest way to a girl’s heart.

After that, I pledged to myself that I would not rely on other people for advice, opinions or recommendations. I would instead learn by my own mistakes, even if it meant going to the New Kids On The Block concert even though they “weren’t as good live,” or hooking up with the girl who “won’t give you a blowjob, even if you, like, put it right next to her face.” By and large, I have stuck to my resolution, except in rare cases such as my freshman year of college when I got into a conversation with a hot girl wearing a tight shirt who, after seeing me carrying a book, suggested I major in English, so I did.

Lately, though, I have found that the older you get the less room you have for mistakes. When you are 18 and you nearly set fire to your apartment after putting a piece of pizza in the oven and then passing out, you are funny. Then you’re 27 and suddenly you are “irresponsible” and “an alcoholic.” At this point, you are supposed to have gotten over the perceived invincibility of your youth and accepted that it is a folly to dismiss the knowledge and wisdom of the older generations as well as the varying wellsprings of specialized knowledge that your peers have created around you. In short, you learn that it’s OK to ask for help.

No where is this more evident than in the e-commerce marketplace. When you were younger you relied on your parents not only to buy you things but to know what kinds of things to buy you. Somehow, my mom knows that Farberware makes better coffee pots than DeLonghi, and my dad knows that Bosch power tools are better than Craftsman. Eventually, though, technology and progress outstrip gender-specific familial stereotypes and traditional know-how, and when it came time to buy my first computer, the only thing father thought to ask was, “How big is it?” Clearly in this day and age, if you are going to look for advice, it must come from another source. And what better source than someone who has already bought the product, which is why I love online customer reviews. It’s unsolicited advice from anonymous sources, all without having to leave your home or, worse, talk to people. Truly, after porn, online gambling, email, news, fantasy sports, real time stock trading, shopping and amateur porn, this is the best thing the internet has given us.

What bothers me, though, is how websites haven’t learned the natural limits to which we may take this technological breakthrough. Such as Never, once in my life, have I gone into a drugstore and needed a professional opinion on something I was buying, unless I was buying Oxycotin, in which case I might ask, “What can I take with this to see pretty colors?” But band aids? Tissues? Toilet bowl cleaner? My position is the only time you should need help deciding between the Swiffer WetJet and the Clorox ReadyMop is if you are blind, but even then only to the extent that you need help picking out anything because you can’t see it.

And I’ll tell you something I definitely don’t want your help picking out. Condoms.

These Lubricated Trojan-Enz condoms have been my favorite since I first tried them almost six years ago. Prior to that I had used a number of different condoms from Trojan and other manufacturers, but found that either the lubricant didn't work well, or on several occasions I had actually broken through the end of the condom. These Lubricated Trojan-Enz always feel good and there are no surprises when I withdraw because my semen is always safely inside the condom.

– Alex

Not only has Alex confessed to probably impregnating a few women, but something about the tone of the review (I think it was the word “withdraw”) has made me never want to use these, for fear that if I ever run into Alex we might have something in common. Or worse, John:

I used these with my girlfriend and they worked great. The total experience was awesome. I really can't compare these with other condoms because they are the first I've used.

– John

Something about this just screams WHY ARE YOU TELLING ME THIS? John – you just had sex. Probably for the first time. Shouldn’t you be texting a friend? Or doing it again? And not writing a product review for the condom you used?

Likewise, I would not trust Danielle,

These condoms are terrific. You can feel that they are thinner than other condoms by using them. ; )

for using an emoticon; Raymond S.,

My favorite condoms!

for using an exclamation point (and his last initial); or Tim,

The size is good, but why do they have to smell so bad?

for raising more questions than answers.

You see, what retailers like fail to realize is this: that you most often trust the opinion of a person similar to yourself. And I’m pretty sure that I have stark fundamental differences with anyone who will go out to buy condoms and, after having sex, log on to and type out a review. In fact, I don’t even want to know if you tried a new brand of condom and it turns out the material they used disappears when wet. I would rather find out on my own, and in the following weeks when we run into each other in the pregnancy test aisle, and we see in each other’s eyes the regret of making our own mistakes and dismissing the help of others, just exchange knowing glances, and simultaneously reach for whichever one is on sale.

Friday, January 19, 2007

The Gap Responds to Newsday’s 24-Page Investigative Report

Step over it.

Work Sits On My Face, Forces Me To Enjoy It

Sorry about the lack of new posts. Apparently my boss and I have different interpretations of what I am supposed to be doing here at the office. I thought they were paying me to read my email, write a blog and foster a positive interoffice atmosphere by dressing nicely and telling my co-workers all about the great movies I’ve seen recently. He thinks I’m paid to work. We’re still in negotiations, but I’m pretty sure we’ll reach an agreement by Monday. And by “agreement,” I mean he and I will come to terms on some sort of an arrangement that we both find acceptable. Because that’s what an agreement is.

Have a great weekend – unless you read this and said, “Boy that was a shitty cop out post,” in which case I hope your weekend sucks. And stop looking at that cute picture. It’s not for you!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

“24” Wins Award for Best Thing to Watch Instead of The Golden Globe Awards

After yesterday’s post, I was having second thoughts about my plan of action. On the one hand, The Golden Globes only happen once a year. On the other hand, what the fuck was I thinking? Skipping two hours of “24” to watch Hollywood actors receive awards? To further convince myself, I made a chart detailing the reasons to watch each show. This is what it looked like:

The Golden Globes


• Attractive women wearing slutty sleeveless dresses

• Things blowing up

• The fate of the world in one man’s hands

• Punching, stabbing, shooting, etc.

• Intrigue

• Conspiracy, general mayhem

Needless to say, I made the right decision. While I am totally pissed I missed the acceptance speech from the producers of “Happy Feet,” I think it’s worth the trade-off of seeing an atomic bomb detonated in Los Angeles.

Anyway, I’ll refrain from turning this into a “24” chatroom. But I will say that if I was the head writer for “24,” this is how the last scene would have played out:

Scene: Numair completes work on the suitcase nuke. One of the guards sees the TAC teams and gunfire erupts. Ray ducks to the ground. Amid the shooting, Numair detonates the nuclear device. From where he is, Jack can see the mushroom cloud in the sky.

Jack: (on his phone) “Get me the President.”

President: (watching the mushroom cloud on the monitor) “I’m here Jack.”

Jack: “Mr. President, we have a problem.’

President: “I know, Jack, I can see it on the monitor. Hundreds of thousands of lives are in danger. We need to evacuate these communities immediately and get a ground team in there to secure the –“

Jack: “Mr. President, that’s not what I mean.”

President: “What is it, Jack?”

Jack: “Mr. President . . . tonight was the Golden Globe Awards.”

(Cut to scene of The Beverly Hilton, movie stars milling about, unaware of the impending chaos.)

Boop, beep, boop, beep, boop, beep . . .

Monday, January 15, 2007

Bigger American Hero: Jack Bauer or Martin Luther King Jr.?

Part of me really wants to write that post, but then the other part of me (the one that pays the bills and suggests every new year that I subscribe to the New York Times) blows up the whole argument by astutely noting that Martin Luther King Jr. was a real person, hence winner by default. Plus just calling Martin Luther King Jr. anything “by default” makes me think I’m doing something wrong, like when I read this reader submission on,

“I'm a second-grade teacher and I have a picture of Dr. King in the front of my class. Under the picture I have the words THINK DIFFERENT.”

and my first thought was, “That’s not very politically correct.”

Anyway, Martin Luther King Jr. wins in a landslide! On to my thoughts/thinking points of last night’s season premier of “24.” Obviously don’t read any further if you are avoiding spoilers.

• I think you shouldn’t even attempt to watch a show this important without a TiVo. I was at Brooke’s (no quotes, real girl) apartment, which is TiVo-less, and come 8:00 there was a late-running football game on another channel and I wasn’t even done cooking dinner. When “24” started, while I knew that there was no way to pause it, my mind, so adjusted to life with TiVo, couldn’t comprehend that the show was playing and there was nothing I could do to stop it. It was a sickening feeling. Around 8:45, I really wanted a doughnut and a glass of milk but had to wait until the show was over to go into the kitchen and get it. I felt like a prisoner. Speaking of prison . . .

• Scenario: You’re kept in a Chinese prison for two years. During that time you are repeatedly tortured and interrogated for information about your government. For two years, you say nothing. You absorb every bit of punishment they hand out, and say nothing.

Finally, after you’ve officially grown the “my spirit is broken” beard, you get word that your government has finally negotiated for your release. You are flown back to the U.S. and five minutes after you step off the plane a government official basically says, “We rescued you so we can hand you over to someone else to torture you. Only this time it’ll be a little different, because then they’re going to kill you.”


If you are Jack Bauer, you obviously ask if you have time to shave before you go. My whole point being, Do you think Republicans watch this show and get pissed? Because Jack is obviously a Democrat (look at how he dresses) and he is the super-patriot of America. I know it sounds silly, but consider this: If someone ever asked you, “Can you imagine a Republican doing the things Jack Bauer does?” what would you answer? You would say “No.” I have no idea where I am going with this.

• Nicely played with the Asian bomber on the bus in the first five minutes of the show. For a show like this, it’s important to keep the audience on its toes as to which nationality we are stereotyping. Next episode, there should be a two minute scene where Fayed is shown alone in a room doing math and playing classical piano. Like I said – just to keep us on our toes.

• I know it’s Martin Luther King Jr. day and I shouldn’t be asking questions like this, but what is more implausible? An American led air strike on Los Angeles, or two black presidents?

• I love the “Jack has been traumatized by his experiences in captivity” theme. Because as much as I love Jack Bauer, he still made Young Guns II. At least in my head this keeps the Kiefer Sutherland Scale balanced. Yes, I have a Kiefer Sutherland Scale in my head. Just like Tom Hanks hair in The DaVinci Code brought him back down. These things are important to me.

• Brooke: “New relationship rule – any time a guy bites a piece off another guy’s neck and spits it out on TV, you don’t let go of my hand.”

• Have you ever been watching “24” and suddenly thought, “I can’t believe this is happening at 7:00 in the morning.” I mean. it was 6:58AM when Jack bit a piece out of a guy’s neck. I can’t even function a coffee pot before 7:30.

Due to tonight’s scheduling nightmare (along with my own implied homosexuality) I’ll be TiVoing “24” and watching the Golden Globes. Meaning that tomorrow is going to be one of those day-long dances to avoid reading any plot spoilers. And because it’s easier than calling or emailing everyone I know, I’ll say it here:


Please don’t tell me shit about what happens on “24.” Don’t call me, don’t email me, nothing.


Friday, January 12, 2007

Emailing It In: Taking the “Brooke” Out of Brooklyn

From: “Brooke”
To: Dan
Sent: Friday, January 12, 2007 12:11 PM
Subject: Letter to the (hunky) Editor

Dear Dan,

You recently wrote a post about the struggle of being in a long distance relationship, where you lamented the fact that I live in Brooklyn. So I wanted to say, I'm moving to the city. Now you may think I'm moving because I'm considerate or selfless or disarmingly pretty, but the truth is I'm moving because I hate Brooklyn.

They say that people that move to Brooklyn never want to move back to the city. I say some people are stupid. These Brooklyn lovers present arguments about the joys of living in an outer borough. Below, I rebuke them:

Argument #1. Brooklyn has wonderful restaurants.

True. Brooklyn has an array of marvelous culinary choices. But this argument makes the common logistical mistake of estimating by ratio and not total. Five great restaurants out of ten does not a culinary strong hold make. It's like being the prettiest girl in high school – big fish, small pond. One day the homecoming queen will move to LA to make it as an actress and discover that she's just one of a thousand waspy-looking, skinny, blond chicks with proportionate features. And just as she's about to consummate on the proverbial casting couch while the director whispers "You're beautiful baby. I'm going to make you a star," she'll realize she never had the chops to make it in the big city.

Argument 2. Brooklyn has a real neighborhoody feel.

First, neighborhoody is not a word. Second, Brooklyn is huge. Try exploring outside of Park Slope. Let me tell you about my neighborhood. It's "Park Slope adjacent" and just a syringe's throw from the crack houses near Prospect Park, which people say is a smaller version of Central Park. (You know what that makes Central Park? A bigger, better version of Prospect Park.) The point is, while, yes, I know my neighbors, I'm pretty sure that when Crackhead Johnny refers to me as "Snowflake" he's not remarking on my uniqueness.

Argument 3. Brooklyn is much more spacious.

You want space move to a red state. One of my favorite things about the city (proper) is that there's a bodega every 15 yards. I'll vote for any one-stop shop where you can get a six pack, Ring Dings, and deodorant. There's only one bodega in my neighborhood. And while I enjoy Snapply (tastes just like Snapple), I find the business's practices somewhat suspect. No matter what combo of quick fixes I buy, they're always like, "That will be, um, $1.50." Cheetos and a Diet Coke: $1.50. Tostitos, Twix, and a Snapple: $1.50. And no matter what time of day I show up drunk, they always seem surprised to have a customer. Whatever they're fronting, they're not sharing. I tried figuring out the secret password. I was like, "The duck flies at midnight," but the cashier just winked and slid me a pack of condoms.

Argument 4. Eh, that's all I got. You want more, write your own blog post.

Also, deciding to move has made me realize how much crap I actually have. I'm thinking of packing it all in for a simpler, more nomadic-type existence. Like maybe as a sailor. But then I'd have to contract scurvy and fight pirates. And that sounds like a lot of work. Also, I think I'd miss my Pottery Barn wrought iron candle holder.

So, in conclusion, I'm moving. Truth be told, I've wanted to move for a long time, I was just waiting till I had a boyfriend to help. Speaking of which, are you busy on the 1st?


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Million Dollar Idea #1 (UPDATED!)

This morning while “Brooke” and I rode the subway to work together we discussed one of our favorite topics, winning a million dollars on “Deal or No Deal.” Because while we agree that being poor and in love is romantic, we also agree that owning a yacht and being in love is even more romantic.

Winning in “Deal or No Deal” is just the latest in a long line of money-making ideas we’ve had. Some suggestions include: prostitution (me), becoming a spy (her), and getting into the Cuban cigar trade (as a couple), all culminating with our grandest endeavor, The Retirement Cruise™ – where instead of moving into a retirement home, elderly people move onto a retirement cruise ship. When they die, they are cremated and their ashes are spread at sea, just like everyone’s dream.

While the list sounds promising, I’ve decided to take it upon myself to be proactive and begin a series of ventures aimed at supplementing my income. I plan on detailing here each new enterprise and tracking it’s enormous success.

Here is my first venture. Feel free to hire me. Everything printed in the ad is true, disregarding anything that may or may not be too vague to contain any real viability of proof of legitimacy.


I woke up this morning ready to change some lives and write profiles for all the people who surely had noticed my ad last night while Googling “lonely + help writing online profile,” but when I opened my email all I saw was this:

From: "craigslist”

To: Dan

Sent: Thursday, January 11, 2007 12:02 PM

Subject: flagged & removed: 260621386 (creative services) Tired of Writing Online Profiles?

Your posting has been flagged down by craigslist users.

Meaning one of two things happened – either my competition got wind of my new service and, sensing their inferiority, took drastic and underhanded action to prevent their inevitable annihilation; or someone took it upon oneself to play God with my dreams and shut me down.

(In lieu of this unfortunate twist, I moved the post over to the San Francisco board, hoping to take advantage of the more liberal sensibilities.)

Seeing as how I did extensive research before starting this venture and am pretty sure that I have little to no direct competition, I’m going to guess that it is the latter who perpetrated this great injustice against me. Me being the forgiving man that I am, though, I have decided to turn the verbal cheek and offer my detractor, as a sign of no ill-will, my very first profile, for free.

Age: 32
Location: Brooklyn
Ethnicity: White / Caucasian
Body type: Yes
Relationship Status: No
Favorite Bands: You’ve never heard of them
Education: Masters Degree in Hating
Likes: party pooping, raining on parades, Klonopin, “The Family Guy”
Dislikes: puppies, ice cream, talking, my parents

About Me:
Hey, my name’s not important, because I’m never going to meet any of you fu*kers. Society is so obsessed with physical appearance and material possessions and everyone is so filled with their own inflated egos that their hearts will never even be capable of noticing the beauty in the world.

Who I’d Like To Meet:

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

New, Inventive Way To Ruin My Day

I woke up in a bad mood this morning, which isn’t uncommon because waking up invariably leads to leaving bed, which is my favorite place in the world.

When I left my apartment I was prepared to be bitter and unfriendly for, among other reasons, having to wake up, it being Tuesday, it being January, having no money and having to go to work. Then I thought: “Maybe my day will go better if I just force myself to be in a good mood. Maybe it will spread to others, like sunshine, and then everyone will be happy.” So I played “Semi-Charmed Kind of Life” on my iPod and walked to the subway.

And you know what? It was actually working. For the entire day, I made pretend I was in a good mood, talking to coworkers, sending cheery emails to people I haven’t spoken to in a while, even calling my mom just to say “What’s up?”

But then I went to the bathroom and as I am washing my hands another guy walks in. He steps up to a urinal and, just as I’m walking out he says, “You know, you could at least flush.”

Immediately I am confused. One, because I did flush. But two, because who in the history of public bathrooms has done this? (Three, because just hearing a grown man stranger say the word “flush” to you is disarming.) I reply, “I did.” He says, “What’s this?” pointing to a urinal full of pee. I say, “I used that one,” pointing to a different, flushed urinal. It is here, with me literally standing accused in a bathroom by a man pointing at a urinal full of pee, that I finally think, “Today probably wasn’t as good as I made it out to be.”

So thanks McGruff, for ruining my good mood. Not just for me, but for everyone. You can be the one to explain to Kathy in accounting why I never replied to her forward about a hug being worth a thousand smiles. Not today, Kathy. Not today . . .

Bon Jovi Doesn’t Like Your Tone, Yahoo!

Monday, January 8, 2007

Tigger Accused of Punching Little Wimp

Disney World, Fla. Jan 7, 2007 (AP) - Tigger was accused of hitting a child while posing for a photo, a spokeswoman Zoraya Suarez said Saturday.

"Naturally, physical altercations between cast members and guests are not tolerated.”

The boy’s father, Jerry Monaco told The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm, "At that point he started bumping into me and I apologized and I figured it was hot out and give him some space. At that point I backed off and went to take some home video of the rest of the family and, out of nowhere, he sucker-punched my son."

This couldn’t be any more different than the relationship I had with my father. Whereas here you have Jerry Monaco content with going on “The Early Show” to tell the world that his son was beat down by the palm of a soft, furry paw at The Happiest Place on Earth, my father would have pulled us apart, taken me to the side and had a talk with me. He would have said, “I don’t know what just happened there, but this sort of thing is unacceptable.” Then he would have handed me a small box cutter, saying, “Now go back in there and finish what he started.” Then he would take bets from the crowd, likely against me, because it’s like he always said: “I love you but you’re small for your age.”

But you know the weirdest part about this whole thing? I’m not surprised at all. I always pictured Tigger as a loose cannon. He’s increasingly hyper and strung out, seemingly always on the verge of snapping. Even Goofy, whose demeanor is defined by crazy, unpredictable behavior, never came off as out-of-control as Tigger did, with his small, unblinking eyes. If Mickey ran his family with a firmer hand, you imagine Tigger would have been handled like Joe Pesci in Goodfellas.

Still, if I were Disney PR, I’d view this as an opportunity. Here’s how I would spin it:

Tigger is on drugs. Tigger uses crack and meth. He is a troubled tiger who made some mistakes and is in need of help. They could even say he was molested as a cub to drum up sympathy. Then take him out of circulation at The Magic Kingdom for a few months. Send him to rehab. Put him, Christopher Robin, Pooh, Roo and Eeyore on an episode of A&E’s “Intervention.” Piglet can break down in tears saying, “You hit a kid, Tigger! You’re out of control!” Cross-promote it, make a big deal out of it – peel back the façade of perfection that Disney World has portrayed for too long now. In July, at the height of tourist season, reintroduce the clean, newly rehabilitated Tigger. He can go around the park carrying a Poland Spring bottle, posing for pictures while fake-punching kids and telling them to stay off drugs. He’s Disney’s real-life comeback story, a walking, talking embodiment of the idea that even though the world can be a hard, cruel place, in the end friendship and cheerfulness will triumph. Send him on Larry King, Jon Stewart and Oprah, where she can show flashbacks to his lowest points and he can choke up while saying, “I was a different tiger then.” It would be the best thing Disney has ever done with itself.

Then, some years down the line, after an obscene amount of taunting has turned Jerry Monaco Jr. into a crazed recluse, Monaco can take out Tigger with a sniper’s rifle while positioned atop Cinderella’s Castle in the middle of Magic Kingdom, assuring that for at least one more day I have something to blog about.

Friday, January 5, 2007

[redacted]: Defender of Amendments and Rights and Stuff

I normally don’t post things like this. Typically my content skews much more refined, much more demure. But when sex and the First Amendment collide, typically I want to be there to splash around in the post-coital puddle.

Apparently Daniela Cicarelli is pretty famous in Brazil for, among other things, modeling, dating soccer players and being hot. And having sex in front of large groups of people . . . while secretly being videotaped! The videotape, of course, surfaced on YouTube. And Brazil is pissed!

Brazil, famous largely due to a particularly aggressive brand of bikini wax, decided that while candor is to be appreciated in some forums, this particular situation required a heavier hand. (I’m not even sure I’m making innuendo anymore.) Basically, Brazil, as a country, took legal action to protect Cicatelli’s privacy by forcing YouTube to remove the video.

“YouTube was first ordered in September to remove video showing Cicarelli and Brazilian banker Renato Malzoni in intimate scenes along a beach near the Spanish city of Cadiz.

But the clip still appears periodically on YouTube, prompting the expanded order from Sao Paulo state Supreme Court Justice Enio Santarelli Zuliani on Tuesday, the court's press office said in a statement.

The case now goes automatically to a three-member panel of judges who will decide whether to make the order permanent and whether to fine YouTube as much as $119,000 for each day that the video was viewable.”

My first question being: Shut up, Brazil. My second being: Since when did it become acceptable for Brazilian courts to legislate our right to view free, online, voyeuristic content? If I am going to download music illegally and view sexually explicit pictures on popular celebrity blogs on my office computer I’m going to do it at the offense of MY country and MY employer. Not some half-assed three-member panel of Brazilian judges. It was MY ancestors that came to this country basically after all the hard work had been done and benefited from the industrial boom, and I’m certainly not going to let Brazil step in now and pontificate to me about all these awesome rights I inherited. And by extension of this defiance (think of it as an online Boston Tea Party) here is the link to the video. (It doesn’t get good actually kind of funny until about 3:30, and it’s probably NSFW, although if you make it really small and hide it behind an Excel spreadsheet you can probably get away with it.)

Irony of ironies, having sex in public is the actual crime here. But you don’t see Brazil putting a warrant out for their arrest. And you want to know why? Because sex in the ocean is overrated. And, moreover, dangerous. My tenth grade health teacher said that most bodies of water are teeming with microorganisms and that if a girl gets one of them in her cha-cha it could cause all sorts of problems, like bad grades and unpopularity. Then again, he also said that if you’re going to smoke, you may as well smoke Marlboro reds, because they’re the best.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

My Long Distance Relationship

Back in sixth grade when every relationship was a long distance relationship, not merely because your mom had to drive you to the movies and pick you up, but because none of your friends could know you had a girlfriend lest they label you something awful like “girl lover,” lending a certain emotional long distance to the relationship as well, I remember thinking, even then, “I don’t know how people do it.”

I’m an instant gratification kind of person. Rarely do I make plans more than a day in advance for the sole reason that why wait? And almost never do I keep friends who move away. I remember when my friend Tara told me that she had accepted a job in Boston and was moving there to be with the man she had fallen in love with and would eventually marry, and I thought, “How sad, I really liked you.” Or when my friend Shereen decided to move to Japan for a year to teach English and the day after she left I woke with an ache in my heart that I knew Shereen was dead – to me.

So imagine my consternation when I found out that my current girlfriend lived in Brooklyn, a place so foreign to me that even when I lived there I rarely visited. The distance was mind-boggling. The first time I took a cab home from her apartment, I fell asleep in the back seat. I woke up with a start what seemed like hours later and immediately thought that this was it for me, that I would be killed by this insane cab driver who obviously kidnapped me and had been driving around for hours looking for the remotest location to bury me alive. As I looked desperately out the window for some indication, a last bit of comfort in knowing where my grave would be, I saw the sign for the Brooklyn Bridge. I as halfway home.

What this means for the relationship is that it involves planning. (See: the part where I say I never make plans.) If this were a sitcom and I called “Brooke” at 5:00 to ask her if she wanted to get a drink after work, she would say, “Sure, let me run home and change first.” Then, after an hysterical interlude involving two friends, one possibly gay, discussing in hilarious detail how the other can’t get married because he’ll never sleep with another woman ever again!, it would cut to “Brooke” and I walking down the street seemingly minutes later. Well in real life there is no “Let me run home and change first,” unless you plan on “meeting up” for a late dinner. For us, seeing one another requires foresight and a well executed plan; it involves talking on the phone the night before and, in some rare instances, diagrams. And most of all it means that you be prepared, that you carry a Jack Bauer bag everywhere you go and in that bag is the essentials – underwear, deodorant, batteries, phosphorous matches and water. Because if you are not prepared, things like last Tuesday happen.

Flashback to Sunday night, New Years Eve. Plans include two parties, neither of which I am comfortable at being “the guy with the bag.” The “plan” though is to go back to “Brooke’s” apartment after the second party. In a move I would later recall as “stupid,” I decided I would simply spend the night at her place, wake up the next morning and then go home – nothing more than a glorified all-nighter.

Flash forward to Monday night. Me, still in the same clothes. My choices: tear myself from her couch, which has become for me the definition of comfort, and take the hour long commute home, or stay the night again. And just as my mind is about to contemplate the drawbacks of Option Two (e.g. needing to be at work in the morning IN THE SAME CLOTHES), a new episode of the Twilight Zone came on and the take-out arrived, sealing my fate.

Flash forward to Tuesday. I am a mess. My walk of shame has turned into a trip to the diner, walking the dog, half hour commute, entire day of sitting at my desk wondering if that was foot scrub I used to wash my face journey of shame. No shower can replace the want of a fresh pair of underwear. There are plenty of places a man can go commando – work isn’t one of them. The notion that halfway through a meeting I could suddenly remember that should my fly accidentally be open that I am letting my boss into a world very few people have ventured into before is gut wrenching. My underwear is no better. My hair? Smells like a girl. Dove? Not strong enough for a man. The dichotomy of scents (Is it flowers and sweat?) confuses me as all at once I am nostalgic for my girlfriend and sick of myself.

On the subway ride home, looking down at the stain on my pants wondering how many days that had been there, I knew three things for sure: That if this is what being homeless is like (only without the sex and the food and the home) then it really must be as awful as all the rumors say; and that all good relationships really do require sacrifice, and sometimes that sacrifice means the woman sitting next to me on the 6 train making that “What’s that smell?” face before noticing the stain on my pants and then making the “Oh” face and discreetly turning away; and though I am positive the sixth grade version of me never thought it would come to this, he may have overestimated the question in the first place.