Friday, December 7, 2007

Q&A Friday!

It seems every year December becomes less and less Christmassy. All week, there have been a gaggle of tourists outside the NY Stock Exchange clogging up the sidewalk. Enter me, a cannonball of under-rested, overstressed fury, barreling my way from the subway to the front door of my office building, straight through the crowd. Last week, a small Asian child took a picture of me as a ducked my head, making like Sonic The Hedgehog through the crowd. I imagine he will show the picture to his friends and they will all laugh about how I need acupuncture or Tai Chi or a happy ending. “Hahaha, Westerners!” Bite me.

Then today I looked up and saw why the crowds have been gathering. The Stock Exchange had put up its annual 65-foot Christmas tree. 65 feet of Norwegian Spruce decorated with multi-colored Christmas balls the size of a newborn’s head, and it took me four days of walking past it to notice. That’s just not right.

So I decided that I am undergoing a Christmas Spirit blitz, starting today. It’s Christmas music all day long (I suggest using this station at Pandora). Then, at lunch, I’m going to Century 21 and buying a snowman figurine to put on my coffee table at home (maybe even a whole set of figurines, which I can place in sexual positions when Brooke isn’t home). I will also buy an advent calendar, preferably one with chocolates in it. On my way back, I’ll drop a few coins in the Salvation Army can and maybe even make eye contact with the homeless guy who smells like urine from 30 feet away. Then I’m buying an eggnog latte and standing in front of that tree for no less than 15 solid minutes, making a mental list of every single fucking thing I love about Christmas. Then I’m finding every clip of Scrooged on the internet and watching them on repeat. I refuse to go another day devoid of Christmas Spirit.

On to the questions.

Dear Dan and Brooke:

I was recently dumped by my fiancé so that he could go live the life of a River Rat, floating down the Colorado. He broke up over the phone and told me he "didn't want to waste the money to drive to my house to tell me in person, because it wouldn't change anything". He also pawned my mountain bike for cash- and then told me he hadn't seen it for awhile...

Here's the dilemma/ question: he left a bunch of shit at my house (e.g. winter boots, coats, suit,). As it is cold here in UTAH, I gave the stuff to a local homeless outreach center. He also left a huge box of pictures and negatives. He is a "writer" (oh, Lord, don't get me started...) and has "written a travel novel that will become the next “On The Road”, these pix are the result of 12 years of photography that he wants included in the novel. QUESTION: should I burn them and tell him 'fuck off' or should I be the better person and return them? Answer soon, please! He’s coming for the pix in 3 weeks!

-Still Going to Hell in SLC

Apparently, I’m not good enough to answer questions solo anymore. So I consulted with Brooke via IM and this is what she came up with:

Brooke (1:14:50 PM): Hmm
Brooke (1:15:09 PM): Scavenger hunt!
Me (1:15:22 PM): Make him work for them?
Brooke (1:15:22 PM): Yes
Brooke (1:15:31 PM): Mail the picture to friends throughout the country
Me (1:15:35 PM): That's pretty genius
Brooke (1:16:01 PM): And then post clues on a website called or some such thing
Brooke (1:16:07 PM): You'll make tons of money off the idea
Brooke (1:16:20 PM): Readers can offer to receive pics and hide them for you
Brooke (1:16:31 PM): You'll have tons of liquor sponsors
Me (1:16:32 PM): This is almost too good to publish
Brooke (1:16:59 PM): Yeah, but we'll never do anything with the idea. “Lost” comes back on the air in ‘09. We're very busy.

I don’t think Brooke understands how Q&A Fridays work. This seems like an awfully helpful answer. Much better than my first reaction, which included a blowtorch and a bad pun involving “On The Chode.”
I think I may have had my first gay experience when I masturbated to your blog the other day. Does that make me gay?

I’ve taken a few virginities and turned a few women straight, but never have I turned a man gay. I’m not sure whether to file it in under “conquests” or “misadventures,” but the in fact I am flattered. Now let me relate a little story to you that might help you through your confusion.

When I was young and still believed in Santa, every November I would start trying to be a good person. I figured Santa wasn’t watching us all year long because he was busy with preparations and housework, but that sometime around Halloween he really began working on his naughty/nice list. So I would help my mom around the house and make my bed and not complain when my vegetables touched my mashed potatoes, which, any other month of the year, was totally unacceptable.

Then, every Christmas, like clock-work, I got a pile of presents under the tree. I thought I was a mastermind. “You can’t catch me, Santa. No one can.” When I found out that it was my mom and dad who were buying all the presents, I was shocked. First, because how could they fool someone as smart as me? But more importantly, they were with me ALL YEAR LONG. Through the good and the bad. Yet they still bought me presents? Even though I shot my dart gun at my sister.

My point is, it’s our actions all year long that matter. Not just the desires we concede to during lonely moments of weakness. But in this case, yeah that’s pretty gay what you did. No questions here. Yes, Virginia, You Are Gay.
Hey Dan

Why are bands, like Linkin Park (My favourite) or maybe they are the only one, coming up with sad, angry, dark songs for their album? It makes me depressed. Help.


The short answer is, Linkin Park sucks.

But the long answer is much less interesting. Sad, angry, dark songs are a trend in music right now, much like black babies or alpaca ear muffs. Many people will say that music defines the times, but those people probably didn’t study macro-political-economics at Harvard. While the music industry may think it has some sort of influence on popular culture, the fact is pop culture is defined long before we get jiggy with it. Musicians are writing music impressed by years of subconscious cultural influence. (The sole exception is Gloria Estefan’s “The Rhythm is Gonna Get You,” which was recorded at the height of a social, political and economic maelstrom – to this day underground think-tank marvel at its resiliency.)

Anyway, what we’re experiencing in music right now is a response to the lack of oil, the war against terrorism, the conclusion of the Harry Potter series, and global warming. It’s a sad state of affairs, and music cannot help but reflect that. It is a dire state of affairs, and there is only one hope . . .

How do I get the sales woman here to stop saying "Knock Knock!" with a cheery little smile on her face when she walks into any room? Understand, she is not actually knocking, nor is she even attempting to. She is literally just saying the words "Knock Knock". It makes me want to puke blood.

There is only one surefire way to stop annoying office behavior, and that is to make it so awkward for the other person that they become literally scared and disgusted of themselves to ever perform that action again. It requires some steely nerves on your part to pull it off, but if you can, I promise this woman will never say “knock, knock” again.

Here’s what you do:

The next time she comes to the door and cheerily chirps, “Knock, knock!” look up at her wide-eyed, in complete terror, cower behind your desk and begin sobbing. When she asks you what’s wrong, tell her that when you were young, your uncle molested you. Late at night, after everyone else had gone to sleep, he would tip toe to your door and very quietly he would peek in to see if you were there. And you would hide under the covers, gripped by fear, hoping he would leave. And when she says “knock, knock,” it reminds you of him.

When she asks “Why, because he would say, ‘knock, knock’ before he entered the room?” you reply, “No, because he was really fucking annoying and so are you.”

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


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude, you really like indie songs that have been used to market large corporations.

December 7, 2007 at 3:49:00 PM EST  
Blogger Dan said...

I think it's medically impossible not to like that song. I called a few doctors to confirm, but they were all too busy listening to their iPods to take my call.

December 7, 2007 at 3:57:00 PM EST  
Blogger Faith said...

I agree with Dan, If you don't like that song, or the triumphantly fabulous video *for* said song, then you might want to have your brain checked for tumors that make you into one of those idiots that post anonymous comments on blog posts.

Oh wait! It's too late, isn't it? So, so sad...

December 7, 2007 at 5:27:00 PM EST  
Blogger molls said...

I don't even have an annoying person in my office (I don't have an office, either...) but I want to tell someone that story just to see that wonderful look of "Oh shit" come across their face!

December 7, 2007 at 6:58:00 PM EST  
Blogger Abigail Road said...

Linkin Park does suck.

December 7, 2007 at 9:19:00 PM EST  
Blogger Sam said...

Oh Dan I hope I'm not too late - don't get the egg nog latte - I read on another blog (yes, I blog-cheated on you) that it's absolutely awful.

December 7, 2007 at 9:24:00 PM EST  
Anonymous Chloe said...

To the chick that got dumped by her fiance: I thought I was miserable. Dating a guy for 4 weeks and then being blown off. He even called me from Asia while on a business trip. I don't understand how they can be "enamored" with me one day, and the next day poof...I say burn his pictures! F___ him! he's a douchebag. As for me, I'm debating wether or not to contact the troll I am or was so fond of. Any suggestions? anyone?

December 7, 2007 at 11:59:00 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brooke nailed it with her advice to that woman. He'll get his pictures back, but she'll make it as excruciatingly difficult as enduring him had to have been.

Chloe - four weeks? No, don't bother, especially for someone who didn't break up with you in person. You can't be friends with someone who you liked a lot, but who dumped you after only four weeks. There's not enough emotional attachment to ease your inevitable resentment. This is how you unwittingly release the dormant psycho ex that lies within you.

Unless you were lukewarm on him, in which a booty call may be in order.

December 8, 2007 at 1:15:00 AM EST  
Anonymous Dee said...

Hey Dan

The colours in the video definitely cheered me up. And I still like Linkin Park. :) Just gotta listen to happier songs more often.

December 8, 2007 at 7:52:00 AM EST  
Blogger GoMommy said...

Brooke is brilliant- that pic idea is priceless! Does she have her own blog yet?

December 8, 2007 at 11:20:00 AM EST  
Blogger valiantqueen said...

I will accept and hide photos for that gal...My Wasband is now a Pirate on the High Seas, and he is wondering about a few of his own prized items. I suggest she take Brooke's answer to heart. It is so worth the time to set it up. See if his precious book is worth the gas money!

December 8, 2007 at 12:44:00 PM EST  
Blogger Plexus said...

I think you guys should run with the Scavenger Hunt for exs Web site. Nothing wrong with a little supplemental income.

Odd Sleater-Kinney (which is named after a road outside of Olympia, Wash where they are from) is now getting in the limelight. I didn't think they even existed again.

The last album (are they even called that anymore?) by Linkin Park was terrible outside of one song. Been digging Broken Social Scene, Iron & Wine and Radiohead's latest album as of late.

December 10, 2007 at 2:06:00 AM EST  
Blogger sid said...

I agree. Brooke's idea is frigging awesome. Syhe should patent her idea.

December 10, 2007 at 6:04:00 AM EST  
Blogger Faith said...

plexus: "Odd Sleater-Kinney (which is named after a road outside of Olympia, Wash where they are from) is now getting in the limelight. I didn't think they even existed again."

If you're refering to the band in the video, that's actually Feist. Not Sleater-Kinney. So they very well may still not exist!

December 10, 2007 at 11:30:00 AM EST  
Blogger G said...

For a brief shining moment, that song lifted me out of my S.A.D. And then I dropped like a rock.

Repeated viewings of the Valerie by Ronson/Winehouse may be in order.

December 10, 2007 at 11:48:00 AM EST  
Anonymous Heather said...

If you want some pix of Southern Utah that also give you the opportunity to rake my ex-fiancé, Steve, over the coals for being a HUGE douche email me at

But you have to be willing to have him contact you to get them back AND you have to be willing to be a complete asshole to him before you make him send you $5 to send them.

December 10, 2007 at 3:11:00 PM EST  
Anonymous k. said...

here's a curious follw-up to the "knock knock" coworker situation:

imagine my surprise when i walked into work this morning with my "i've been molested" hat on (in case my fake tears aren't very convincing) and said coworker was not at her desk!

apparently, at last night's christmas party (needless to say i did not attend) she drunkenly attempted to twirl our accountant around the room, slipped, and broke both of her wrists. she won't be back for at least a month.

how's that for a christmas miracle!

December 10, 2007 at 4:04:00 PM EST  
Blogger Faith said...

On the other hand, k, she definitely won't be able to actually knock again for a while (it's all in the wrist), so you might be destined to her verbal knocking for months after she returns. As she probably won't have picked up on the karmic revelation of it all while she's out, you'll likely have the opportunity to pull the molestation story out at some point sometime in spring or so. Hopefully you'll follow-up then, too. :)

December 10, 2007 at 4:20:00 PM EST  
Blogger Plexus said...

Was referring to Dan's multimedia extravaganza on the right hand side that allows him to share some of his favorite songs - he likes to air drum to it!!

Heather, I think that might be too much effort for Dan. But it might be an interesting enough experiment that he might go for it.

December 11, 2007 at 2:42:00 AM EST  
Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Brooke is awesome. Can I make out with her like it's 1991 all over again? Okay, that's rude. How about a triple kiss? Noice.

December 11, 2007 at 4:40:00 PM EST  
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May 1, 2009 at 11:27:00 PM EDT  

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