Friday, March 30, 2007

Q&A Friday! The Resurrection!

Just in time for Passover, the death of the son of man and his much anticipated resurrection, we too at [redacted] have our own rising from the dead. Some may scoff at the notion that Q&A Fridays had the same impact on the world that Christ had, but I’ll ask you this: What did Jesus do on his spare time? He helped people. And what does Q&A Friday do? It helps people, too! My point being, when you’re trying to pick out a role model for your children, remember that [redacted] and Jesus have a lot in common, but I’m the one with the smokin’ hot girlfriend.

Speaking of which . . .

So I am a funny, sarcastic, narcissistic guy dating a Jewish girl. Should I convert to keep her family happy and to carry on the tradition of 2000 years of culture, or screw, should she dip her head in water and call it one for the J-man?

Identity Crisis.

You couldn’t be more in luck. As it just so happens, I am presently going through the exact same thing! It’s almost as though you knew this when you wrote the letter! But how could you? Where would you get such information? To what lengths have you gone to learn such details of me life?

Still, every question deserves an answer. And here is yours: 2000 years of culture, 2000 shmears of schmulture! Great sex and a similar taste in movies isn’t about God. It’s about the heart. And when the Jewish God is sitting up there with the regular God, do you think they’re quibbling over little things like who stopped reading after the Old Testament? Of course not. All they care is that you are happy, and you’ve paid your fees and you don’t get an abortion. That’s a big one. They hate that.
Do you consider it bizarre that my roommate eats only apples, oatmeal, protein shakes, ham, and Swiss cheese? Would you recommend staging an intervention for him before his muscles finish choking off the blood to his brain? Continuing on the food theme, my other roommate will only eat food if it comes from in a can (think Campbell’s condensed chicken noodle soup straight from the can at room temperature) or in hot pocket form. How would you recommend dealing with this situation?


I can’t tell if you live in a frat house or a really boring psyche-ward, but either way this sounds like a nightmare. I prefer to surround myself with like-minded people. I am profoundly lazy, and agreeing is so much easier than disagreeing. So the idea of having to live in a place with people who don’t eat steak and pizza and make little ice cream sandwiches with Oreos and sprinkles, it terrifies me. I once broke up with a girl because she didn’t eat dessert. Not that she prevented me from eating dessert, but I couldn’t stand that she wouldn’t. I also couldn’t stand that she kept sleeping with other guys.

Anyway, here’s what I think you should do: poison them. Not like to kill them, but if you poison all their favorite foods they won’t be able to eat them anymore. A good substance with which to poison someone untraceably is gold sodium thiomalate. I can’t divulge how I know this, but let’s just say a very reliable doctor with a limp told me.
How drunk can a girl be before a guy finds her utterly ridiculous and sloppy?


There is a point at which alcohol can kill you. It is called an overdose, and it is marginally unattractive.

But that’s not the question you asked. You asked at what point a guy might find a girl ridiculous and sloppy. Let’s first strip these words of their negative connotation and replace them with a positive one. Ridiculous, for example, implies escape; a departure from norms. Originality, even. Like that scene in Pretty Woman where Richard Gere is climbing the fire escape to bring Julia Roberts flowers. That is ridiculous! Why not use the stairs? Ridiculous!

Likewise, sloppy is just another word for disorganized. “Unanal retentive,” if that were a word, would be a good word for it. You know who was sloppy? Jackson Pollack. Couldn’t even keep the paint on the canvas. So let me ask you: if I met a girl who was ridiculous like Richard Gere and sloppy like Jackson Pollack, would I still go home with her? Damn right I would. And I would take a bubble bath and go on a shopping spree, although I wouldn’t let her drive me home from the bar, that’s for sure.
How often does the average young couple have sex?


Everyday, and if you’re not doing it you’re not cool.

OK, I’m not comfortable with that answer. Like Jesus, I have a responsibility to my readers. Sometimes it’s funny to tell the truth, but sometimes it’s more important to lie. Young couples don’t have sex nearly as often as they pretend to. For example, there is a guy in my office building I often run into on the elevator, and every time I see him he is talking to his friend about having sex with his girlfriend. “Man, she wore me out last night!” or, “Man, I wore her out last night!” (he doesn’t seem very bright). But I will guarantee you that more than once “last night” all he did was stick his vibrating PlayStation remote control down his pants. Or maybe she “wore him out” by complaining about her new pimple. Whatever the case, it’s only natural for people to project more sex than they have. It’s why places like Target do such great business, because their products look more expensive than they are.

So I would say that the average young couple has sex two or three times a week. I would also say that if you’re settling for average, maybe it’s time for a little gut check. Not like check to see if you are brave enough to strive for more, but check to see if you’re getting fat. That ruins everything.

(Ed. Note: The author’s girlfriend wonders if he has trouble counting. She thinks, perhaps, he forgot to include girl on top. The author apologizes for his poor math skills and would like to backtrack and claim that he was speaking in business weeks, not calendar weeks. For a calendar week, the frequency jumps to 8 or 9. We aren't very social.)

Sometimes I feel like you don’t update your blog enough. It makes me sad because there are so few things left to cherish in this rapidly disintegrating world, and your blog is one of them. Where can I go when I need . . . more?


God, this is so flattering. I don’t know what to say. Are you cute? I bet you are. You sound cute. Anyway, you’re in luck. Because if this isn’t enough, you can also find me here. However, if this is enough, you’re also in luck. Because this is the end.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Man’s Best Friend


They say that having a child changes you, that it gives you a perspective you could only get from truly loving someone more than yourself. I wouldn’t know anything about that because I’m a little scared of babies, what with their vacant, judgmental gazes and indiscriminant release of bodily fluids. But ever since I’ve been with Brooke, I have felt like, on some level, I understand what they mean. Because when I met Brooke, I also met Puppy.

Puppy is Brooke’s dog. He is three years old and if you ask him, “Is your name really Puppy?” he will stare at you wagging his tail, because he can’t speak. But yes, his name is Puppy. It says so on his collar, so if he ever got lost and some stranger found him, they could read his collar both as a label and nametag: Puppy.

Puppy and I have bonded in ways I have never been able to with my human friends. We play fetch and tug of war, two games most of my other friends don’t enjoy. The other day we were trying to play catch, which is a little harder than fetch because his mouth eye coordination isn’t so great and his paw is too small to grip the toy properly to throw it back. But still, after about the 25th toss, the toy sushi (spicy tuna roll, I think) went high up into the air, and as it came down Puppy snatched it out of midair with the nonchalance of a high priced call girl at a buffet dinner party. I welled up with pride and immediately gave him every bit of food I could find as a reward, mostly because this is the same way in which I like to be rewarded.

There is one form of bonding though that is paramount to all others. It is the bonding only a dog and his true parents (or a paid dog walker) can do. I curb Puppy.

For me, this is huge. Man’s natural inclination is away from poop. Instead I am saying, “Although my entire life I have avoided poop, I will willfully pick yours up, because I love you.” It is terribly intimate, and terribly gross. Yet Puppy and I have managed to enjoy the ritual, him more than me, especially the part where right after I pick up his poop he takes off in a full sprint down the street, dragging me behind him in a victory lap with a bag of poop jangling at my side. I love that little fucker.

The other day when Puppy and I were out for our morning walk, and Puppy began frantically sniffing a spot on the curb as though to say, “It’s here! It’s here somewhere! Where I shall poop!” (Ed. Note: Puppy is British), I noticed something different. He was taking longer than usual. And nothing was happening. Puppy was constipated.

Now, I’m not embarrassed to say that I know how he felt. I’ve been constipated before, although never at a bus stop on 79th St., which I have to imagine makes it worse. Puppy though showed no signs of discomfort. He simply stayed there, squatting, staring straight ahead. So I stood there as well, a good father, staring straight ahead. After about a minute he must have gotten tired because then he sat down. I tried to give him a tug, but he wouldn’t move. Fair enough. Sometimes you have to just sit on the bowl for a while. The people crowded around the bus stop. I stood in front of Puppy for privacy, and stared straight ahead.

Finally, Puppy was ready to try again. And finally something was working. Kind of. After all that effort and strain, all that sat on the sidewalk was a turd the size of a marble. He turned and looked at it, defeated. I coaxed him to move, saying out loud, “Come on, Pup, maybe walking will help.” People stared at me. Puppy started to move slowly, ambling awkwardly down the street. It was evident something was wrong. Then, in a move I can only describe as advanced Bikram yogaesque, he began walking only on his front paws, with his two rear paws off the ground, pointing forwards, as he dragged his butt on the sidewalk. Obviously, not having the dexterity nor the money to buy toilet paper, Puppy was wiping his butt his own way. And in a moment I will not soon forget, I looked pitifully, loving on him, took my plastic bag, wrapped it around my hand and . . . well listen, I did what any good father would do.

And after I was done, Puppy turned to me with a look that said, “WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?” and I said, “Next time get it out yourself,” because I think tough love is important too. And I think he understood me, because then he faced forward again, seeming satisfied, loved, his tail wagging slowly at first and then faster, right before he took off sprinting down the street, me following close behind, my poop bag hand waving dangerously in the breeze.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

No Lazy Deed Goes Unpublished

This may come as a surprise, but there won’t be a post today. Luckily, you can find a post here.

I’m going to stop typing now because when my hands are on the keyboard, they aren’t holding my drink. And that’s just bad philosophy.

Monday, March 26, 2007

War On Trial and Error

Brooke: “Was your father in Vietnam?”

Me: “No. He never had to serve any time.”

Mom: “Joe couldn’t get drafted because he had three testicles.”

Me: (hearing this for the first time) “I’m sorry, he what testicles?”

Mom: “When he went for his Army physical the doctor said he had three testicles.”

Brooke: . . .

Me: . . .

Mom: (to my father in the other room) “Joe, weren’t you held out of the draft because you had three testicles?”

Dad: “No. My number never came up.”

Mom: “Oh.”

Friday, March 23, 2007

The New York Times Needs New Fact Checkers

There is a man in my office whose job is to complain about everything. He is the living, breathing, grousing definition of a curmudgeon. If you told him this, he would complain about it.

Most days he wanders around the office mumbling his complaints under his breath. In the past, whenever he would walk past my door doing this I would assume he was talking to me, so I would ask, “Were you talking to me?” As it turns out, he wasn’t. But now he was. And I would be on the hook for a conversation about jammed staplers or liberal hypocrites. In time I learned to ignore him, so now while he paces slowly past my doorway muttering about how tired he is and how multivitamins are a sham, I simply keep my head down and pretend to be engrossed in something else, such as writing about him.

His two greatest enemies are The New York Times and the weather. I would call the Times his nemesis (because while he objects to everything they write, he respects them enough to read it every day nonetheless) but the weather is his archenemy. He would destroy the weather if he could, bringing it to its knees in a heap of climactic variables never to change again. Sometimes I feel bad for him. I picture him walking out of his apartment building every morning, looking up in the sky and thinking, “So we meet again, weather.” I don’t understand the intricacies of their bond, such as how he intends to defeat weather or what happened to him in his childhood to make him so loathe temperatures and barometric pressure, but I honestly believe that on his death bed he will laugh a sanctimonious laugh that last week’s cold front will have been his last.

Today when he came back from lunch, he was particularly grumpy, almost livid, insofar as someone who falls asleep at their desk can be livid. Apparently The New York Times reported that it wouldn’t start raining until this evening, yet, YET, it was raining now! There he was, umbrellaless, damp, indignant.

You could hear the excitement in his voice, excoriating his nemesis and his archenemy in one breath. “The New York Times . . . they can’t even get the weather right!” As though the news, the reporting of factual events, were the hard part, but predicting cause and effect relationships of the solar system’s dynamic environmental conditions, that was a breeze.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Catching Up With [redacted]

Writing about writing is pretty taboo. Not taboo in the “unacceptable” sense, just taboo in the “it’s really stupid” sense. I’m pretty sure for the majority of people reading writing about writing is boring, just like reading about reading, or singing about singing (unless you are Gloria Estefan). It’s the literary equivalent of tracing your hand on a piece of paper and making it a turkey. But hey, let’s finally talk about the elephant in the room.

Guys, I have a blog.

I guess it’s no big secret that I started here. I’m assuming the majority of the 20 or so people who read this site followed me from The Daily Dump, a phenomenon that should be studied by sociologists all over the world as evidence that familiarity trumps quality every time. Like when you move into a new house and buy new furniture and new appliances, but you still use the same old ratty cum stained blanket on your bed. Because that’s what you’ve gotten used to all these years. Well friends, I am that cum stained blanket. And that blanket is growing up.

Check out the site today and you’ll see a blog post by yours truly. Why is this significant? Well for one thing it’s the first time I’ve been asked to write something for a website, at least one that doesn’t have in the url. It’s a pretty neat feeling when someone comes to you and says [I’m paraphrasing], “Hey, I loved what you did with that foot nipple, maybe you’d want to try writing about travel for us?”

On top of that, it’s going to be a recurring thing, at least until they wise up and say, “OK Dan, you just used the ‘hiking is like interracial sex’ analogy in the last post. You think you could come up with something new?” And then, after the ‘kayaking is like interracial sex’ pitch falls flat and the restraining orders are filed with the court, then maybe it will stop being a recurring thing. But for now you can expect one or two posts a week. My goal is to make it to Easter.

So my first one is up today. It is decidedly drier than the tripe I spin here, but that has more to do with me being a talentless hack than any editorial constraints. I’ve been assured that I have a longer leash than I think, which is awesome because for a second I completely forgot that I had a leash at all. I guess that’s the allure of a blog – being your own editor, sitting down with yourself late at night with a mug of coffee debating the ethical consequences of running the piece on flambéed cock. But there’s something to be said for doing it this way too, where there’s someone standing over your shoulder politely suggesting that maybe flambéed cock has nothing to do with visiting the pyramids in Egypt. Because when you think about it, it doesn’t.

And finally, I’m going to come out and say it: I miss Q&A Fridays. It’s like I had a child or a car stolen from me. I loved Q&A Friday. So I think what I’ll do is instead of making it a weekly feature, I’ll just collect questions over the course of time and when I have four or five good ones I’ll throw a Q&A post together. What this means is that you need to submit more questions by emailing me here. And here. Oh, and here too. God, I love when someone emails me there.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Confectional Harassment

On my way back from the bathroom just now, I walked past the glass doors of another office on our floor and saw that they were having some sort of party. I didn’t want it to seem like I was spying, but of course I was curious to see what kind of cake they had, so I made pretend I had to tie my shoe. Only just then a woman was coming around the corner to go into the office, and there I was kneeling right in front of the door untying my shoe so that I would have to tie it again. So then I had to do this weird thing where I am mid-tie, but feel, at the same time, that I have to move. So instead of letting go of the laces, getting up and moving, I remain holding both laces just as they are (loop in one hand, excess string in the other) and practically stumble backwards, because I have no balance while holding my shoe laces and trying to walk. The result of course is that I don’t move back nearly as far as I should have and the woman, in a rush to make it to the party before everyone finishes the cake, has to squeeze past my crotch-high face to get into their own office. Basically what was meant to be a simple recon mission ended with me nearly performing oral sex on a woman.

On the bright side at least there isn’t a giant foot nipple at the top of the page anymore.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Germans Are At It Again, and other news stories

Woman grows nipple on foot

nipple on foot

A 22-year-old woman sought medical care for a lesion in the plantar region of her left foot, a well-formed nipple surrounded by areola and hair.


“She first discovered the nipple while trying to talk to a guy who wouldn’t stop staring at her foot.”
“Self conscious about her weight, she leaves her socks on during sex.”
“When asked why she didn’t pluck the hair, the woman responded, ‘Because I am gross.’”
“On top of everything else, she is flat footed.”

The Caffeine Database

This site is ridiculously helpful. A grande Starbucks coffee has an absurd 372 grams of caffeine. That’s more than a Cocaine energy drink PLUS a Pimp Juice. And Pimp Juice bills itself as “The #1 Hip-Hop energy drink!” I guess they at least have the image going for them – it’s not likely you’re going to see any real pimps on line in Starbucks like, “Yeah, I wanna Double Venti Soy Sugar Free Vanilla Latte. No whip,” and then refill their Starbucks card with a few Benjamin Franklins. Actually, that’s a pimp I would respect. Because all good pimps know it’s not just about owning the youngest girls, it’s about owning your image. Pimp Juice is like eating a Hostess when all the real pimps are chilling on the bench outside Magnolia Bakery. Or something.


Aaaaaand, I’m addicted.

WWF says pollution, dams threaten rivers

I only included this because I thought they were talking about the real WWF (the World Wide Wrestling Federation). But then I read the story and it turns out it’s about the World Wide Fund for Nature. I was hoping for a soft lede like:

“Jesse “the Body” Ventura is concerned about more than just his body – he’s concerned about bodies of water.”


“Jake “the Snake” Roberts cares about snakes – even outside the ring.”

But instead I get a boring article about damage to some kind of land or lake or something. You know, it’s a lesson these institutions should learn: If they would just get some wrestling personalities involved in their campaigns, more people would listen. Do I care if some scientist tells me that recycling can save thousands of acres of land a year? Probably not. But do I care if The Ultimate Warrior drops a ladder on a seal’s head and then says, “Don’t kill seals. Recycle.”? You bet I do.

Kill tame bear, say animal nuts

Knut polar bear

ANIMAL-RIGHTS activists have called for a zoo’s baby Polar bear to be KILLED — because it relies on humans.

I love The Sun. As though the story weren’t enough to provoke outrage, they felt the need to emphasize the fact that THEY WANT TO KILL HIM, KILL HIM UNTIL HE’S DEAD AND WILL NEVER COME BACK. Honestly, I’m all for news outlets being objective, but sometimes objectivity just gets in the way of what you’re reporting. Like when some schadenfreudic Germans want to euthanize a baby polar bear for being too cute and wanting to play.

I think the U.S. government needs to intervene here and grant the polar bear cub amnesty. We should threaten a violent response if anything happens to Knut. Oh, did I mention the bear’s name is Knut. COULD HE GET ANY FUCKING CUTER? If I were a better man, I would infiltrate that German zoo, rescue Knut and more to Alaska where we could play in the snow. Then he would grow up real big and I would think it was like some Disney cartoon where he had come to trust and love me, so I would try to ride him to the local fish market, but once we got there the smell would drive him crazy and he would maul me. But God, the good times we would have before it came to that.

Monday, March 19, 2007

How To Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day On The Upper East Side

Manhattan’s Upper East Side is known as a haven for babies, small dogs and frat boys who will split the check with you at dinner yet still date rape you for dessert. It’s a neighborhood you never go to unless you live there, and I happen to live there.

Underneath the thick film of blandness though, there is a lot to love. Besides the abundance of “good enough to be affordable” restaurants lining the streets, you literally can’t throw a piece of pizza without hitting a drunk, scantily clad girl looking for a one night stand to help her through those lonely post college years. Or you could do what I did and settle down with a girlfriend immediately after graduation. Then you just eat the pizza instead and enjoy the neighborhood’s many other offerings like movie theaters and parks where you can sit on antique benches and regret your life.

But then there is one day where the quiet streets come alive. Bars bleed green into the street, and bag pipes are just as common late 90’s hip hop songs. It is St. Patrick’s Day, and if you plan on going to the Upper East Side, you had better do it right. Leave your class and dignity at home and follow these few simple rules for success.

1. Wear Something Green and Stupid

What better way to show pride in your Irish heritage than to wear giant green sunglasses? It’s perfect! Traditional, but not stodgy. Like your ancestors would have worn regular sized green sunglasses, but because this is 2007 you wear GIANT green sunglasses!


2. Scream Incoherent Things at Random

A few good suggestions include:

“EEEEEEEEEE! (for girls)

“FUCK YOU!” (at no one in particular and for no particular reason, as though this were merely another way to praise St. Patrick for converting all those pagans to Christianity so long ago)

3. Embarrass Yourself

The best way to do this is to slip and fall on ice. Seriously, to the guy who slipped and fell on the corner of 78th and 2nd right in front of me, I wish you could have seen how hilarious it was. You had your blazer on, and it matched your sneakers and when you tried to do that little fairy hop over the puddle and you landed on a patch of ice, your feet went up so high in the air. You were suspended long enough for me to consider saying something out loud, but then reconsider and enjoy the moment in private. The guy from the Lucky Charms cereal box could have handed me a pot o’ gold and you still would have been the highlight of my night.

4. Be a Douchbag, In General

This one is really easy. You simply wake up, look at yourself in the mirror and think, “I’m so fucking awesome!” then start drinking. Then meet up with all your other friends who did the same thing, and drink some more. Then put on a green t-shirt, shotgun a Red Bull and go drink some more in public, never forgetting how awesome! you think you are. Then do numbers 1, 2 and 3. But don’t try to do them, just let them come naturally – like those posters you have to stare at and relax your eyes before you can see the sailboat. Just let the humility come to you.

5. Fall Asleep in a Bar

This is your grand finale. You’ve been drinking green beer for hours, groping girls while saying “Erin go braless!” and spilling every possible liquid around you all over your shirt. You’re so happy with yourself, that you need to sit down. And sleep. In public. It’s the perfect end really because you’ll never look as awesome as you do when a bouncer is carrying you out of a bar. Never. Not even when people are throwing things at you and drawing on your face; not even that penis peeking out of your nose. If you have managed to do all of these things, you are a true Irish hero.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Success is a Relatively Gay Term

I woke up this morning drunk; drunk with power (my two NCAA brackets are ranked 6th and 8th out of 68 after the first day of games) but mostly drunk in the traditional sense, from an overabundance of free beer at yesterday’s March Madness party.

It started at noon, and my friend Scott and I took the afternoon off so we wouldn’t have to worry about going back to work. We were told that “everyone usually leaves by 2:30,” but what the party organizers didn’t know is that Scott and I pride ourselves on standing out from the crowd. And if that means that at 5:00, while workers are frantically breaking down tables around us, Scott and I remain there stoically drinking and watching basketball, then so be it. There is no price on individuality. Luckily there was also no price on the six beers we ordered right before they packed up the bar. There may be a price on all the employees gathering around laughing at us, but little do they know I stopped caring what people think about me back in 1994 when everyone gave up flannel but I kept on wearing it because it was comfortable.

When we finally left around 5:30 (at the polite insistence of someone wearing a shirt with a Planet Hollywood logo) we went to the coat check room to retrieve our jackets. However we noticed something funny when we got there, namely that the coat check room wasn’t there anymore. It was like a boiler room con aimed specifically at taking our coats. Scott surveyed the scene with a constipated look on his face and neither of us knew what question to ask first: Did we leave our coats here? Are we in the women’s room? Have we been here so long that our coats have been moved to the lost and found? Mercifully, an employee came over to us and explained that they didn’t know anyone was left at the party, so they assumed two people had forgotten their jackets. Scott and I smiled at each other, knowing that we were victorious in our quest to be the last people to leave. At least I think that’s what we did. There’s also a good chance we simply belched and said, “WHY IS YOUR FACE SPINNING, NICE COAT LADY?”

Even with all my success at drinking and gambling, my greatest accomplioshment came this morning in the form of an email into my [redacted] account. All it read was:

Voting has begun for the Round of 64!:

I followed the link and read the first two paragraphs on the page:

I’d wager that most readers of gay blogs would be lucky to make a free-throw shooting “granny style.” Nevertheless, we have now entered unto the yearly basketball phenomenon known as March Madness.

It’s in that spirit that we yearn for the prospect of hyper-competitive, self-absorbed gay bloggers at center court, scratching out eyes and pulling out hair. And so we offer “March Gayness 2007,” a 64-blog, bracketed competition to determine who will emerge the top of the blogger heap.

At first I thought it was simply a solicitation to vote. As a well respected blogger, I get invitations for this kind of stuff all the time. But then I checked out the bracket, and lo and behold:

Proof that the gay community has better taste in reality shows than they do in blogs: I am in the running to be named the best gay blogger for “March Gayness 2007.” Gay.

At first I was a little taken aback by the mistaken assumption that I was a gay blogger. Sure, I can see how some things I write about may emit a decidedly feminine vibe, but that’s only because I read in Cosmo that this year women are back to liking men who are in touch with their sensitive side. But at the end of the day, I am still a vagina-loving guy. I still read Walt Whitman and drink scotch and say things like, “Where was she hiding those?” when Sun wears a bikini on “Lost,” and most of all I don’t think Diana should win America’s Next Top Model because she’s too fat.

But then I thought (and this may be the alcohol talking) “I want to kick their asses.” That’s right, I want to be the best [not really] gay blog out there. I cried at The Notebook, I slept in a cabana chair with my friend Scott in West Palm Beach, and I use face moisturizer! Every day!

So vote now; vote [redacted]; but most of all, vote proud.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

March Sadness

I’m really sorry about the lack of posts this week, but I promise I have a good reason. I am lazy. You knew this about me coming in. I have the work ethic of toddler. If I was an ant, the 1998 movie Antz would have been about me – an ant who doesn’t understand why everyone else is working so hard when there are so many things in the world to appreciate, like not working, and the internet, and following up long stretches of not working on the internet by looking your boss in the face, pretending to be exhausted from working so hard, and telling him that you are taking the rest of the day off to go to an NCAA Tournament Kickoff party at Planet Hollywood.

So like I was saying: No post today either. But you can’t blame me for this one. The March Madness party is my fifth favorite day of the year. No where else in the world (not true) can you get free food and beer served to you while watching four different college basketball games, in which the only interest you have is the money you bet on them, unless you went to one of these schools, in which case I probably don’t talk to you anyway. You can’t begrudge me this. It’s like begrudging a divorced mother her child support. I don’t think I know how to use the word “begrudge.”

Anyway, I had a salad for lunch on Tuesday and here’s my commentary on the topic: Why? I get how it’s fun because you pick all these toppings to go on it, and there’s like 50 things to choose from, but then when it’s all done and they hand it to you, it’s still a fucking salad. And while you’re eating it, it’s still a fucking salad. Until the very end, when it’s no longer a salad rather a pile of corn and beans and other random crap that settled to the bottom of the bowl in a puddle of vinaigrette.

So yesterday when I went to the deli to get lunch, I stood on the sandwich line and looked disdainfully at the people ordering salads. I couldn’t convince myself that it didn’t matter what they ate, it only mattered what I ate. It does matter, because what will happen is this: Every day I will see 20 people ordering salad, and after a few weeks of eating the same five things on rotation for lunch, I’ll think, “All these people seem to love salad. There’s got to be something to it.” Then I’ll Create My Own Salad with all these exciting, colorful ingredients, and when he’s done tossing it around in the bowl like America’s Next Top Chef, he’ll slide the lid on, write $10.95 on it (because I get so carried away with the excitement of $1.00 additional toppings) and as he hands it over the counter it’ll be like everyone in the room just pulled the greatest con on me, because it’s still a fucking salad.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Q&A Friday! The Finale!

Q&A Friday

It is with a heavy heart that I tell you that this will be the final installment of Q&A Friday. My parents always told me that all good things come to an end. Of course they were telling me this while trying to convince me that my pet turtle, Mr. T, ran away. In this case, though, I just felt like it was time for it to end. Mostly because I HAVE NO MORE QUESTIONS TO ANSWER.

I get it, I guess you guys think you know it all. My parents warned me about this too. They said that one day I would have kids and that even though those kids would be dense little blocks of ignorance, they would still think they knew better than me. And today you all have become my children, and I feel the scorn of my dumb offspring and their hubric obstinance. Oh, don’t know what those words mean? TOO BAD YOU CAN’T ASK ME ANYMORE!

Good luck out there in the real world with no guidance and no one to love you. And don’t come crawling back when you need me to co-sign a loan or baby-sit your illegitimate child. That ship has sailed, and this fountain of knowledge is tapped . . . right after these last few questions.

I’m hoping you can discuss the +'s and -'s of "dating" someone who lives approximately 3 buildings away from me.

Please note...things have been going fine (it's been like 3 weeks) except for the fact that we keep denying that we're dating. I also have this intense fear when I walk down the street that I am going to run into him. Because it might be awkward. Especially because I am most often awkward even when the situation does not warrant awkwardness.

So - pros and cons? Should I maybe abort this thing now before it ends in disaster and I’m so afraid to walk down my street that I stay inside my apartment for the next 5-10 years???

- Anonymous

I’m not sure you know the meaning of the word “fine.” I think if you are walking down the street in fear of seeing the guy you won’t admit you’re dating, that’s outside the parameters of “fine.” That’s more in “my love life is a social disaster” territory. This is what happens when you prize convenience above all else. Like the time I bought sushi from the bodega on the corner because the real sushi place was six blocks away, then I got violently ill. You’ve clearly eaten a bad eel roll here. (I can’t stop with these food analogies.)

Let’s not dwell on the many mistakes you’ve already made. Let’s make up untrue scenarios in which everything may work out fine:

Scenario 1: You wake up one day and decide that this is the right guy for you and despite the fact that all your actions up to this point have been aimed at emotionally distancing yourself from him, you suddenly love him. And good news! He lives right down the block!

Scenario 2: The two of you carry on your tawdry, dispassionate affair for years, never running into each other on the street while on a real date with someone else or while visiting with your parents and the empty sex is enough for both of you to remain inexplicably content.

Scenario 3: Just as you are about to end it with him, he takes a job in Chicago.

Scenario 4: While walking to his apartment one night, you run into your future husband, who happens to be his brother. But he is cool with this and is the best man at your wedding. During the toast he says, “I remember when these two first met, I was fucking her daily,” and everyone laughs and has a great time.

Now let’s check out the likely scenario: One night you call him up and ask him to come over. He says he can’t because he has plans with his buddies. Later on, you go out for some frozen yogurt and while walking by his apartment you see him coming home with a girl. You scream out, “Hey, douchbag! Aren’t you going to introduce me to your buddies!?” and then you engage in a sexy fight with the other girl where clothes are torn and water is sprayed on you. Then things are awkward between you two and every time you run into him on the street you immediately call your girlfriend to tell her all about it and she grows to loath you because Jesus Christ it’s been two years could you please just let it go? But you can’t, because he lives 30 seconds away. You’ve made a huge mistake.
You know when you’re taking a piss and towards the end you seem to shiver and contort for no reason? What’s the deal with that?

- just pissed

Hmm, how do I put this. This is embarrassing . . . So you know when you go to the bathroom and you “take a piss”? Well what you’re really doing is called jacking off. And that stuff that comes out? That’s not urine. And the reason guys have that look of disgust on their face when they sidle up to the urinal next to yours? That’s because what you’re doing is illegal.

The good news is that the shivering and contorting is a perfectly normal response. The bad news is that if you have been mixing up the two processes, there are a lot of girls out there who are in therapy because of you.
I have a co-worker, whom I know to have participated in gay sexual "relationships", my gay room mate has seen him at the gay clubs picking up big black men for sex back at his place. One of these men once told my room mate that this guy is a freak, never taking his "date" into the bedroom, living room floor only, and after it is over, asking his "date" to leave without even a trip to the bathroom for a whore bath. He very rarely sees the same man twice and it seems to be a sex only kind of thing (which I must say has me a little envious of the gays).

So, knowing all this. I now find out this co-worker has a girlfriend, another co-worker. They've traveled, come to parties together and are talking about getting married.

Naturally I am at a loss as to how to talk to this person about his relationship. "How's it going?" just doesn't seem to be a good conversation starter. Especially when what I really want to ask him is "Don't you miss the dick?"

What do you think?

- Kat

For starters, I think you include way too much detail in your letters. That was like Penthouse Forums meets Dear Abby. And why do I imagine the whore bath being a wholly separate pedestal sink, much like a stone bird bath, filled with a shallow pool of cool water with the words WHORE BATH engraved on he side?

There are very few instances where I think it is acceptable to interfere in other people’s personal lives. For example, if a friend of mine started dating a guy and I thought he looked a little familiar and it turns out he did because I saw him on the news last night for being linked to Al Qaeda, then I might say, “Hey I think your new boyfriend is a terrorist.” Or if one of my buddies decided to marry a girl and that night while celebrating at a bar she drunkenly complains to me how hard it is to conceal her herpes when they’re active, I might tell him, “Your fiancé has herpes.”

But in this situation, what you’re dealing with is dating preference. It’s no different than if you were having a great time with a new guy, right up until your best friend thought it was pertinent to tell your new beau that you once had sex with an obese man on a dare. Or that while in college you thought of Jesus while you masturbated. Not knowing these things doesn’t put the other person’s life in danger, so it’s not your place to tell.

Besides, if it’s detrimental enough then it’s the person’s responsibility to find out on their own through spying, deception and reading their email. You can’t life their life for them. Let the gay black sex go.

And as an aside, never start a conversation with, “Don’t you miss the dick?” The negative construction is presumptive. Try the more congenial, “Do you miss the dick?”
El Camino: Car or truck?

- Brock

Your name is Brock. I assure you, your opinion on this matters infinitely more than mine. However if I had to opine, I would say that it is a car, albeit one resulting from a truck raping a sedan. It’s like in Judaism how if the mother is Jewish, the child is considered Jewish. In this mythology, the violated sedan gave birth to the El Camino, therefore it is a car.
Is it strange that my boyfriend doesn't want to have a threesome? I have had a couple in the past (2 girls guy and 2 guys me) and I'd be interested in doing it again with him and another girl. He said it's not a fantasy of his and that he isn't interested. I think that's strange (and disappointing). What should I do? Do you think there's a way to change his mind?

- S.

You seem like a pretty intimidating girl – the type who screams out instructions during sex like, “Grab my ass!” or “Choke me!” And while sometimes it’s nice to not have to make decisions for yourself, often this can create tension in the bedroom.

Another thing that can cause tension in the bedroom is a stranger. Believe it or not, when most men find a strange guy in their bedroom, they don’t think, “Maybe he’s just here to fuck my girlfriend,” they usually go straight for the shotgun.

As far as throwing another girl into the mix, I just think you’re asking for trouble. You know the old saying, too many cooks spoil the orgasm? Well that applies here. Think of it this way: I’m a chef and I’ve been cooking you dinner every night for months. Whatever you want, I make for you. And it’s not easy and sometimes it really hurts my neck, but I do it anyway. Then all of a sudden you tell me that you want steak AND pasta primavera tonight. I don’t have enough hands to make both, so you suggest bringing in another chef. Meanwhile all I’m thinking is, “My girlfriend is a real fat ass if a whole steak isn’t enough for her.” Then I agree and we bring in another chef and we all sit down to eat together. Then you eat my steak, I eat her pasta primavera, she has an eating disorder so she eats a salad, and when I comment, “This is the best pasta primavera ever! I wish you could cook like this!” you get mad and sulk and all the food gets cold.

Now I’m not sure where I was talking about food and where I was talking about sex, but I think you get my point. I’m going to lunch.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Things I Learned Today

Sarcastic cell phone ringtones are only funny until they go off while you are on the toilet in a crowded men’s room.

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

And I Would Buy a Polar Bear Cub

I’ve never played the lotto before. I’m the type of guy who sees the value in the money he has earned and looks too sensibly upon a game of pure chance to waste it. That is why I only gamble on games at which I can have an advantage. When my friends Scott, Len and I went down to New Orleans to save the world, on our off time we frequented the casino. Rebuilding a entire community’s faith in God and humanity was toilsome work and what better way to relax than with 8 strangers sitting around a oval table in an chilled, impossibly well-lit room taking each other’s money until the early hours of the morning while moderately unattractive waitresses brought you free drinks? None. So that’s what we did.

The games were long and for the most part we broke even or lost very little, likely because we cheated. (This is where the “advantage” comes in.) Plus we each drank between seven and ten free scotches a piece, which only added to our winnings. We also made a ton of friends who, if you asked them today, would say that we were loud and obnoxious and they hated us for the insulting nicknames we called them to their faces, but that’s just how we got along.

Prior to all that, about three years ago when I realized that there was almost no point in “trying” at work, I came to the stark realization that at my office I had one true friend, and that was boredom. And I hated her. (“Her” because I imagine boredom being really bitchy, like the type of girl who would send back a glass of water because it was too cold, then blame it on you because “you should have known that the ice would do that.”)

I tried all sorts of things to distract myself from boredom, but there are only so many crossword puzzles you can do and emails you can send. So then I turned to online stock trading. And let me tell you, if you’re thinking of becoming a gambling addict and you don’t have an online brokerage account, you are missing out! You just pick a stock, buy it and then keep on hitting refresh and watch how much money it makes you. It’s like one long horse race only you are listening to iTunes at your desk and not sitting next to old men at the OTB who smell like gravy.

Yes, in a world where so little is guaranteed, I had managed to throw so much away in the pursuit of adrenaline and the big score. And then came Mega Millions.

$370,000,000. So many zeroes you have to count while you write it. “Thirty-seven, 1, 2, 3, 1, 2 . . .” A lump-sum payout of roughly half would land you a staggering $185,000,000. You could never invest a dime and spend $3,000,000 a year without running out before dying of excitement. The prospect is mesmerizing. I can’t even go into what I would do with it all because before I know it my imagination has transported me to a place from which I can’t escape and I am riding through a 10,000 square foot New York penthouse on the back of my genetically produced unicorn. Then it all comes crashing down as I realize, once again, how it won’t happen.

An article on the Mega Millions jackpot quoted Barrie Green, one hopelessly addicted gambler from Oakland, as saying, "I realize I don't have a chance, but nobody's got a chance. So the way I look at it, I have a 50-50 chance – either I win it or someone else wins it." Barrie, who has as much trouble with spelling as he does with math, couldn’t be more wrong.

The chance of winning is 1 in 175,711,536. With the population of all the participating states combined totaling a mere 157,857,237, every single person (including little gambling addicted babies) could buy a ticket and still no one could win. And while the Mega Millions site itself will show you that there is truth to the notion that certain number combinations would fare better than others (in the past 177 drawings, the number 19 has come up six times while the number 36 has come up twenty-four times) I still have to believe that the only way to win is to be lucky – to be divined upon with a fortunate sequence of relative’s birthdays, anniversaries and high school football jersey numbers. There’s no advantage in the lotto besides believing that you have an advantage.

Still, I think this one will be too big for me to pass it up. I’ve put together some numbers that feel good, and if all goes well I won’t be at work tomorrow. Not because I quit, but because I bought the firm and fired myself so I could accept a lucrative severance package. And this site will get a hell of a professional redesign, and some professional writers and some paid readers, I’ll ride off into the sunset on my unicorn, never to be bored again.

Monday, March 5, 2007

An (Old) Testament to the Power of Brunch

While Brooke and I recovered from our respective illnesses this weekend, we thought it would be a good idea to make other people take care of us so we could take a break from caring for each other. We figured the best way to do this would be to have her father take us out to brunch. We considered other options, like staying home and resting or eating soup and not getting drunk, but in the end we thought it best to go a more traditional route, with gratis Bloody Marys at a restaurant we couldn’t normally afford. Oh, and spending time with the people you love.

I think the recuperative powers of free food are highly underrated by the medical community. As our society places increased emphasis on medication, we lose sight of the most basic tenet of life, that being happy means being healthy. I am never so happy as when someone gives me good, free food. Luckily, Brooke shares this sentiment with me. On her list of Top Three Things I Love About Life, I am tied for first place along with Puppy and burritos. I’m not sure she understood the game.

At brunch, Brooke and I took full advantage of the wealth of drugs being offered us in the form of chocolate croissants, Bloody Marys, French toast, all things “benedict,” and, surprisingly to me, salmon. Brooke is Jewish, and of the many differences we share (her killing my savior, etc.) the one that I was having the most trouble with was eating fish for breakfast. I was taught that fish were strictly dinner food. Maybe on the weekends you could eat fish sticks for lunch, but by and large if it came from the ocean you couldn’t partake until after 6:00. I imagine if my family was ever stranded on a desert island and my father caught a fish to cook for lunch my mother would suggest maybe coconut instead. Or perhaps a turkey sandwich, because I also don’t imagine my mom understanding how desert islands work. But never fish.

Of course I caved under the pressure and tried salmon (or as they call it in Hebrew, “lox”) and found it to be not bad. Maybe I am more nurture over nature, or maybe more Catholic over Jewish, but I still prefer peanut butter on my bagel. (Cue fist pump from my mother.)

However, as a compromise between my oh-so-gentile French toast and the lavish meals everyone else was eating, Brooke’s father and I then shared a hamburger for dessert. And as I ate myself way past the point of full and well back onto the road to good health, I saw an approving glint in her father’s eye. Although it could very well have been a tear in his eye, or a tear in my eye as we both lamented the ordering of the hamburger not long after it arrived, but I will say this: It was the most delicious free hamburger I never wanted to eat, and today I am feeling much, much better.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Q&A Friday!

Q&A Friday

Yes, I’ve been sick, but just like Magic Johnson I’m not going to let a run-down immune system prevent me from living a normal life. And my normal life involves Q&A Friday. Although it should be noted that I took so much medication before going to bed with Brooke and her shitzu last night that that at one point I woke up caressing Puppy’s boob. And Puppy is a boy.


On to the questions.

Dear Dan,

There has been some debate over how much a man should shave his crotch. As a man of fashion, and being knowledgeable in what women want, do you think the twig and berries should remain hidden in the bushes, trimmed to a well kept lawn, or completely shaved for the 'last chicken in the shop' look?

Anonymous English Guy

Some debate? This in fact may be the most debated topic of all time. Indeed, at the heart of the Great Lincoln-Douglas debates was this very question (with Lincoln wanting his slaves trimmed, Douglas preferring them bushy and natural).

The times have certainly changed since then. The Confederacy has been absorbed, slavery has been abolished and, most importantly, the straight-edged razor is no longer one’s only option for a good shave. Because wow, one wrong pass with that and you could do some real damage. And let’s face it, if you are shaving your balls you are probably drunk, which isn’t going to help matters. Although the few times I have gone to my barber for a shave, as he leans over my face I always smell whiskey on his breath. And he does an excellent job, so you never know.

Anyway, there are a few positives and negatives for all the options. Having things hidden by the bushes makes a girl work for it. You’ll know she loves you if she digs through the rough to find the real you. Plus you can sneak attack her, not unlike being surprised by a snake while weeding a garden. The downside, of course, is that traditionally speaking “sneak attacks” in the bedroom carry the negative connotation of “date rape.” Don’t hate me, I’m just the messenger.

On the other hand, having everything completely shaven means you can’t get crabs. And, yes, everything will look bigger. But keep in mind that looking bigger comes at the price of being completely visible. If you haven’t been reading the news lately, let me fill you in on a late-breaking story. Cock and nuts are ugly. Real ugly. Think of your package like a homeless man. Now, would you rather see this homeless man fully clothed, or with shaved balls? Exactly.

For my money, nothing says “Touch me here” like a well styled coif. That’s why I get my hair cut at a fancy salon. It tells people that you care about how you look, and trimmed pubic hair will convey that same message while at the same time holding back that little bit of mystery. It’s just the right amount of perspective to keep her eye on your tree through the forest.
Last week I went on a date with a man who calls himself a "Progressive Christian." I'm thinking this is slang for "I like to have premarital sex."

Awaiting your confirmation,
Post Modern Mary

I’m not one to knock silly religions, but being raised and educated as a Catholic I believe gives me the right to speak to this topic.

When God gave Noah the 10 Commandments, he didn’t say, “Hey, here are some rules. A few of them are a little tricky. Just do your best. This is God, signing off.” No, he said, “You shall follow these laws or you shall perish from this mortal world!” [paraphrased]. You see, religion isn’t like softball. It’s not like if you’re feeling under the weather you can skip a game. Or if you have a really bad hangover you can play left field and vomit over the fence when no one is looking. With religion, you’ve got to bring it, every game! You don’t break the rules, you don’t dog it, you give 110% every day! Like a great t-shirt once said: “PRAY HARD.”

So what do I think about people who call themselves “Progressive Christians”? I think they don’t love God. And I think that God doesn’t love them. And I think no one likes their music. And if you think back to the last person who tried to pull this “progressive” crap with God, you will remember what happened. God told Abraham to kill his son, and Abraham, trying to be all progressive, was like, “Really? Are you sure? He’s a pretty good little kid, doesn’t cry much. Can’t I just lead some people out of Egypt or something?” and God was clear that he had to kill his son. So Abraham did. He killed him. And then Abraham became the father of the 12 tribes of Israel.

Anyway, you can see where I’m going with this. Tell your progressive friend that sure, you’ll be his little premarital slut. But he’d better plan on taking Jesus off his MySpace list. And he’d better not want to pray after it’s over, because no one will be listening. He’ll be all alone in the world, just him and your vagina. Ask him: Was it worth it?
I have trouble finding porn on the Internet. Can you help?


I did some looking into this and it turns out there is a whole group of people who suffer from the same problem as you. They’re called “blind.” I contacted the head of their organization, the American Association for the Blind, and they told me, “Blind people face a number of challenges in everyday life that sighted people take for granted.”

Do they ever! I mean, I can’t shop for produce online without coming across some porn. There are quadriplegics who surf the web by blowing into a tube and they can find porn. Porn has become so common on the internet that when I have children I won’t even try to shield them from it. I’ll just say, “Son, this is porn.” And I’ll show him this website. And I’ll tell him that while what they are doing is perfectly natural, this is not the way God intended it. And then when he looks up at me and asks me who God is, I’ll stammer a little and then show him this website. And when he looks up at me so confused he’s ready to cry, I’ll pat his head and say, “The world is a great enigma, son.” Yes, I’ll be a terrific dad. Right up until I get a call from his high school teacher telling me that my son will be suspended after he was caught in the boy’s room masturbating to a picture of God, who is really a bunny wearing cute little tiger ears.

(Think you’ve got what it takes to have a question? Email me at