Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Monday, April 27, 2009
I told Dan I want to write a post, which I do from time to time. Well, most of the time I just say, “Write a post and make it funny, Monkey Boy. Now dance for me!” But sometimes, I do the brunt work myself. Part of the reason I don’t blog more often is that I write all day. And like a hooker who can’t get intimate with her boyfriend, it’s hard to do it just for fun. (Hi, Redacted Mom. I miss you!) Dan suggested I write about how I came to have Puppy. Shocker – I’m not going to say that Dan’s love for Puppy is unnatural. But I will say that if Puppy were an actual child, I would be seriously concerned that he was getting all Law & Order: SVU with his step-kid. But their special relationship makes me happy. And if Dan cheated on me or insisted on taking more drawer space or didn’t finish painting the bedroom even when he said he would, I would leave him and he’d never see the dog again.
The truth is when I first got Puppy it didn’t seem like a big deal. You know, owning a living being. People owned other people for years before slavery went bust. (Too soon?) It all started as this store in
Months later, I passed a dog store and in the window was a little puppy shih tzu. Just to see how it felt, I asked if I could hold him. They let me take him into this cornered off sitting area, where he nuzzled in my arms and then promptly leaped off my lap, landed on his head, and started screaming bloody murder. Like if a squawking parrot was being eaten by a singing pterodactyl that was being mauled by a small tiger – but higher pitched. A non-stop cry-bark-scream. Everyone in the store came around the corner to stare at me, prepared to think I was a horrible person until they discovered I was young and pretty and could probably be redeemed. But regardless, I felt like, you break him, you bought him. So I packed up my new dog and some dog food and drove home, lighting a cigarette on the way, telling the new breathing animal, “Look, this is how it’s gonna be and you better get used to it. Cause if not, I’ll send you back where you came from" – but loving-like. (Hi again, Redacted Mom. I used to smoke. I know it’s awful and I don’t do it anymore. Except when I’m drinking. Like coffee or water. Kidding! Booze. I only smoke when I drink booze. Mmm, booze.)
Have you ever driven with a new born baby? That’s how it felt driving for the first time with Puppy. (I’m guessing. I’ve never had a baby. Though once there was a really close call. Bullet dodged.) But I’d always been a laissez-faire driver. I had pretty strong weaving skills and drove a beat up old convertible that eventually ended up on Pimp My Ride (true story). But now I’ve got this living being in the car, and while I may be immortal – or at least I was at 23 – I wasn’t so sure about him. So I drove slow, steady, and terrified.
I finally get this three-pound living thing home and freak out. Cause I might kill it. By accident, obviously. I wasn’t going to smother it with a pillow. It’s just, I’ve never been very responsible. More the type to lose a shoe, not an easy thing when you think about it, as it requires coming home half barefoot. Easier though on Halloween. So now I have this pseudo-baby at my apartment. An apartment which I share with my then boyfriend, who is a country musician (what, I existed before Dan invented me).
Suddenly it occurred to me that I should have mentioned the new, living being to said boyfriend before agreeing to raise him. So I call the Country Musician, who was in
Now this ex grew up outside of
And that’s the story of how Puppy got his name. It’s also the story behind the country music song, Bitch Took My Dog and Left Me Brokenhearted with Her Crappy Car.
Friday, April 24, 2009
After coming across an interesting service piece on Yahoo!’s homepage today, I realized that I’ve neglected my advice-giving duties, which really aren’t duties at all but more delusions of grandeur. No matter; my therapist (Puppy) says they’re interchangeable.
The article is ominously titled “Dating Tips: 9 Flirting Moves That Work (and Ones That Never, Ever Will)”. It’s scary because you may be thinking that the opposite sex hates your guts, but really you are practicing flirting moves that will never, ever work.
I was going to share it, because I want my readers to get laid as much as possible so that the next time you are having sex you will think “I can’t say Dan never gave me anything!”, but then I realized that it was beyond retarded. Like, way beyond. Like you’re taking a drive up the coast of
But hey, everyone should have the right to decide on their own if they want to flirt like a comically outgoing hooker in a 1990’s Janeane Garofalo movie (I’m looking at you, Flirting Move #4), so here you go.
On to the questions.
Recently, I was with my closest friends (one male and one female), discussing a party the male friend and I had been to last year. At said party, after male friend encouraged me to stand on top of the speakers to get a better view of the band playing, I was quickly pegged in the face with a can of cashews. It sucked. Anyway, upon recounting this story in front of the female friend, she asked why she hadn't been invited and my male friend immediately responded, "Oh, I would never bring ladies to this sort of party." Then he looked at me and made a lame excuse about me having a "tougher skin" than most girls. Later that night, I was told by a *different* male friend that, despite all of his attempts (mostly poop talk), I was impossible to gross out, unlike other girls who are squeamish and easily repulsed. My question is this: all of the squeamish, easily turned off girls have boyfriends. I do not. Is having a "tough skin"/not being disturbed by boys talking about taking dumps a bad quality to have?
I’ve dated lots of “types” of girls (and I don’t mean Asians). After starting out my romantic career wasting time with the same kinds of girls, I made a conscious effort to take myself out of my comfort zone (easy blondes) and try something different (easy brunettes). This inevitably led to my Russian Period, which was more cheerful than it sounds, but less productive because I couldn’t get behind their regional cuisine.
Anyway, during all this there was one girlfriend in particular who was absolutely ungrossoutable. It was in her dorm room in college where I learned what a queef was, and that certain girls can queef on demand, and that the vagina is the most simultaneously fascinating and terrifying organ, the Christopher Walken of genitalia.
Our relationship was one of complete openness. Comparing armpit smells, leaving the door open while peeing, and farting indiscriminately. One time she rushed into my apartment, closed the door behind her, and broke a long, loud wind with an audible sigh of relief, then said, “I held that for two blocks because I thought you’d like it.” That, in retrospect, may have been the turning point. Because while it’s true that I did like it (I laughed for hours), it may have subconsciously tipped my Fart/Attractiveness scale, leaving her on the wrong side of the smelly divide. Maybe if I was still a caveman I could have looked past it, even casting her quirkiness in a positive light (Heat! Fuel!), but soon enough I would be graduating college, going off into the real world of polo shirts and clenched butt cheeks. And in the indie movie game of “How Quirky is True Love?”, she had crossed over from
So as much as it may sting your poop loving soul, it probably wouldn’t hurt to feign disgust the next time your friend takes you to a donkey sex party. A subtle “I can’t believe that midget didn’t wash his hands before serving the sangria,” should do. Just enough to say, “I’m girly enough to buy fancy underwear but I can still take a cashew tin to the face.”
I just found out last week that I'm pregnant. This means no wine, no beer, no Jack Daniel's, and no smoky, hepatitis-ridden strip clubs. I don't know if I'm ready for a lifestyle like that. On the other hand, I'm happily married, I have a stable income, and I replaced all my wire clothes hangars with wooden ones after watching Queer Eye With The Straight Guy.
Do you have any advice for adjusting to such a different way of living?
I'm About to Get Really Fat, Aren't I?
Sometimes when Brooke and I get really, really drunk we discuss the prospects of having children. While we both know that we would be good parents (or good enough, in the we-won’t-leave-them-out-in the-hot-sun vein), the road blocks we invariably encounter are the logistics, i.e. Brooke delivering a ten-minute, profanity-laden rant when she stubs her toe vs. let's see her buck up and push a baby through her vagina (well, not all of us). Never mind the fact that you literally cannot talk to her before she has ingested caffeine in the morning. You can try, but just like you can try to talk to the toaster it will never respond.
All of which isn’t to say there’s no upside to your Quaker-like gestation period. Putting myself in your fat shoes, here’s how I would handle it.
• Embrace eating. All rules go out the window. You can (and should) eat cake for lunch. This is a positive.
• Embrace maternity leave. SIX WEEKS. Skip breast feeding (it’s so Freudian) so you can start drinking again ASAP. Suddenly maternity leave sounds like an elongated spring break (Maternity Gras) – or a condensed one where you go from drunk to knocked up to drunk with a baby in a month and a half. Also, Netflix.
• Make people do shit for you. Just ride the bus all the time and make people get up for you. Cry a lot in stores about how you forgot our wallet because YOU’RE JUST NOT READY TO BE A MOM. People will totally pay for you. And never let your husband forget that it was his penis (hopefully) that did this to you, so now he owes you things like fancy dinners and cash.
• Keep your eye on the prize. After nine months, which really isn’t that long when you think of it in terms of a prison sentence, you’ll have a baby. And someday they’ll be all grown up, and you two will go to the herpes-ridden strip clubs together. And when you look over at your child while they wipe up some stray drops of urine from the seat next to them, you’ll know it was all worth it.
Is it possible to have a lasting relationship with a man wears t-shirts with sayings on them?
Let me pass along a some advice I once received from a wizard. He said, “I’m not a real wizard, asshole. Wizards don’t exist. This is a medieval street fair. The beard isn’t even real.” The point being, you can’t judge a person by the cover of the book they’re carrying, and you can’t judge a man by the shirt he’s wearing (unless he’s wearing a shirt bearing a Chipotle logo, in which case it’s probably safe to order a chicken burrito from him). After all, it’s what’s under the clothes that counts. Like a big heart and a penis to give you Maternity Gras.
Dan (can I call you Dan?),
I've been waiting for it, but it never comes. I've been reading your blog for almost two years (stalker) and I like how you seem to have an opinion on everything, but you haven't written about the lameness of Twitter (maybe it's because you're a closet tweeter) I'm not saying that I'm strong & have resisted the Twitter-urge, but...what are your thoughts on it? Surely you agree with me that no one should want to know that a complete stranger just finished Tolstoy on the toilet.
As it stands now, I am anti-Twitter. I don’t subscribe, nor do I tweet. I think it’s for the birds (nailed it again!) But much like Benjamin Franklin must have been ridiculed for his telephone (“If I wanted to know grandpa died I would have checked the obituaries!”), so to must this new technology be given a wide berth of acceptance and the opportunity to fail on its own.
Make no mistake though: Unless you are outside my house with a gun, I do not give a shit what you’re up to RIGHT THIS VERY SECOND. Likewise, for the life of me I cannot envision a scenario in which I would want tons of people to receive and “update” from me on their office computer and mobile devices. Actually, wait a minute . . .
Acceptable Tweet #1: Being stabbed. “Currently being stabbed. Call for help.”
Acceptable Tweet #2: Being raped. “Currently being raped. Call for help.”
Acceptable Tweet #3: Just saw George Clooney apply chap stick. “He pulled it off!”
Acceptable Tweet #4: Trapped under a fallen tree. “Currently trapped under fallen tree. Call for help.”
Acceptable Tweet #5: Being beaten. “Currently being beaten. Call for help.”
That’s all I got.
(Think you’ve got what it takes to have a question? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Is That a Killer Penis in Your Pocket or Are You Just Happy To See Me? Oh, It’s a Killer Penis? How Unfortunate. I Was Just Making a Joke.
Friday, April 17, 2009
I’m receiving reports from my Boob Czar in New York that with a classic bell jar weather pattern forming, tomorrow is shaping up to be Boob Day 2009 – and on the exact one-year anniversary of Boob Day 2008*. Someone call the Farmer’s Almanac, because you could time your crops by this, people!
So even though I’ll be enjoying the perks of Miami this weekend – massages, meals, cocktails and an endless parade of kinky sexual activities – I would trade it all ALL OF IT (except the kinky sex) for the chance to celebrate Boob Day with my fellow New Yorkers.
Gather round and let’s end with the Boob Day motto: Boob Day, give us the grace to accept the cleavage that is on full display, the courage to stare at the cleavage that isn’t, and the wisdom to not really notice the difference. Hip hip hooray for Boob Day. Good talk.
* Ladies, I would like to apologize for the fact that there is no complementary holiday for women, but I can’t because the idea of Penis Day or, God help us, Sack Day sounds more like the plot of a C-grade outer space horror film than a celebratory occasion. Besides, boobs are fun for everyone. Stop being selfish and accept it.
SEXY UPDATE: My Boob Czar notes that low temperatures could make for nippy nights. My Boob Czar is total ZING.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Part of Brooke’s job is to know about cool events happening around town. She compiles all these fun happenings into a weekly rundown of short write-ups, letting people know that there is, in fact, more to do in
One of the things she highlighted for this upcoming weekend was called The Black & White Circus Ball – basically a vaudevillian show benefiting The Theater Institute of South Florida. Cool enough, except then Brooke received an IM this morning from her fact checker in
Fact Checker: “There’s a problem with your Weekend Guide.”
Brooke: “Which part?”
Fact Checker: “Well, you described The Black & White Circus Ball as ‘Campy performances — hypnotists, depressed clowns, a retarded fire-eater — followed by a boozy postshow bash to kick off Miami’s first gay pride fest.’ It turns out the fire-eater isn’t retarded. He’s retired.”
Brooke: “Are you sure?”
Fact Checker: “And the show has a hypnotist? … OK. And there are depressed clowns? … OK. And a retarded fire-eater? … No, a retarded fire-eater. … Like mentally handicapped? … R-E-T-A-R-D-E-D. … Oh, retired. Not retarded. Got it.”
Fact checker: “I triple checked.”
Brooke: “That does seem less dangerous. My bad.”
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
One of the things Brooke and I like so much about the new apartment building we moved into is how many people have dogs. No just because Puppy now has friends to play with (despite the fact that his favorite game is rape), but because, in my opinion, owning a dog says something about you. Unlike babies, who can creep up on you thanks to tequila shots or unfulfilled promises of pulling out, no one buys a dog by accident. It is a willful choice to care for another living thing, a declaration that says, “I am so unselfish that I want to devote the next fifteen years to keeping this dog alive,” or “I am so selfish that even though I can’t keep this dog alive, I am going to try anyway so that I will have someone to complain to when my friends and family screen my calls, and every so often petting it will be very soothing.” Either way, there’s lots of dogs around, and I love dogs, so it would be awesome.
Or would it?
The problems of having a 30-story apartment building full of dogs became evident shortly after we moved in. First it was the smell on the elevator. Not so much an overwhelming stench, but certainly enough that when the doors opened you thought, “Whoever was on here before me smelled a lot like a dog.” To fix that, the building installed these time release air fresheners. They are mounted up in the corner of the elevator car, and every so often they shoot out a burst of air freshener. Good enough, except that the first time I was in the elevator when the burst happened, I thought someone had shot a blow dart at me, like indigenous people do, which was doubly confusing because who knew indigenous people were such good hiders, and what did I do wrong anyway?
Then came the poop. (Note: Also a very good first line for a novel.) While the large grassy park across the street from my building is a doggy dream, not everyone treats it with the respect it deserves. Meaning they shit on it. Not the people, but the dogs. Which is fine, but what I don’t get is how an owner can be so calloused as to just walk away from a huge pile of poop your dog just made. How is this ok? There’s even free poop bag dispensers surrounding the park, so really your only excuse is laziness. And in my opinion, poop deserves the utmost vigilance. Some people may say the capacity for emotion or the notion of an afterlife is what separates us from animals, but I like to think it’s the fact that we dispose of our shit. Which is why when I walk Puppy, I always keep my eye on other people walking their dogs. Sure, I may be known around the community as “that guy who stares at my dog while it’s pooping,” but if that’s what it takes to shame owners into curbing their pets, so be it. I’ve been called worse. Well, not worse. But different.
Then there’s the most recent problem. The barking.
Now here’s where you may be saying, “Hey, shithead” (because you’re having a bad day and projecting), “how did you not see odors, poop and barking coming? Don’t you have a dog? Is it really just a stuffed animal and you’re a deranged person who puts it on a leash and drags it around outside three times a day?”
Great question. And the answer is, fuck you. But 1. Even when Puppy starts to turn, he still smells pretty good. Like corn chips. There was only one time I can remember him actually smelling awful and that was because he had a piece of doody hidden in his butt fur. Not his fault. 2. I always pick up after Puppy, even in extreme situations. Or, in the rare case where I find myself stranded and run out of baggies, I will at least cover up the poop with some leaves or woodchips, the same way you might dump a body on “Law & Order.” And 3. I lived in
So over the weekend when Brooke and I were relaxing watching a movie and we suddenly heard a yap, followed by many, many more yaps, we grew concerned, first for the safety of the dog (is it being kicked?) then for our own comfort (would someone please kick it?). Five minutes in, another bark started, this one deeper, huskier. Together, the barks rang out like a call and response – the yappy dog perhaps saying, “CAN ANYNE HEAR ME?” and the larger dog responding, “YES, CAN YOU HEAR ME?” and both dogs promptly forgetting the conversation ever happened and starting again.
The problem was, we could hear them clearly, but due to the way the building is situated we couldn’t see which apartment the barking was coming from. After half an hour, Brooke, who doesn’t boast a very high tolerance for annoyances (she once called me fat for talking during “Gossip Girl”), was about to go insane. So we made a plan: I would get an approximate read on which floor the barking was coming from, and then I would walk up and down the building hallways until I passed the door it was coming from, at which point we would be able to lodge a complaint with the building. I would take my cell phone to communicate with Brooke at home base so she could tell me when the barking started and stopped.
It was a pretty good plan except for a few things. First, I had no idea where the barking was coming from. I’m no ear doctor, but the way I understand it sound travels in pretty weird ways. For example, if I stuck my hear out one window, I was sure that the barking was coming from below me. If I stuck it out another window, I heard it from above. So either the dogs were toying with me (payback for watching them go to the bathroom), or this was going to be harder than I thought.
The second problem didn’t come up until I started scouting random floors in the building. I had assumed that because I lived in the building, it wouldn’t look strange for me to be roaming the hallways. Not true. It turns out, despite the fact that you know you aren’t a robber waiting for a woman to show up at her door holding a bag of groceries so you can perform a home invasion, the other tenants don’t know that. The first time I got off the elevator with someone and looked around suspiciously, concentrating on listening for barking noises, while they unlocked their apartment door keeping a fix on me out of the corner of their eye, the discomfort was palpable. I had to quickly adjust and make pretend I was on the wrong floor, muttering to myself in something of a British accent (more harmless), “What? . . . Hey . . . oh, silly me . . .”, shaking my head as I walked back to the elevator.
It was then that I decided I should have a cover story. It would be this: I am a boyfriend who just arrived home, only to receive a call from his girlfriend with whom he lived saying that she wants to run out and do some errands, so I figure instead of walking all the way to the apartment I should wait in the elevator bank while she finishes getting ready.
I decided the smart thing to do would be not to stray far from the elevator bank, so if I heard someone getting off the elevator or exiting their apartment, I could run back and stand casually leaning against the wall while pretending to talk on my cell phone about what we would buy at the grocery store. Still, though, I would need to creep down the hallway a certain distance in order to hear which apartment the dog barking was coming from.
After trying this tactic on three different floors, I exited the elevator on the 15th floor and thought I heard muffled dog noises coming from an apartment halfway down the hall. I slowly walked down the hallway, craning my head forward to hear better. It was a little farther away from the elevator bank than I was comfortable with, but I figured the risk was worth it because I was pretty confident the endgame was in sight. So I crept further.
Suddenly, I heard a door unlocking right next to me. With reflexes that couldn’t exactly be called cat-like (unless it was this cat), I sprang for the elevator bank while simultaneously reaching for my cell phone. Just as the tenants entered the hallway, I nonchalantly put my phone to my ear and pretended to talk to Brooke. Except that amidst all the confusion, I’d forgotten my cover story. The couple approached the elevators and I looked up, making eye contact with them, smiling. I had to say something, otherwise I was just standing there holding a dead phone against my ear, pretending to look nonchalant, just like a home invader might.
Forcing the words out of my mouth, I said, “So you want to go to the reclaimed lumber yard?” (Brooke and I had been watching a lot of HGTV lately and looked up reclaimed lumber yards online earlier that day.) “That sounds good,” I continued to no one, “Maybe we can hit the farmers market on the way back.” The couple gave me a half-hearted smile as the elevator arrived and I acknowledged them with a slight head nod. Essentially, in my effort to sound less like a home invader in had inadvertently sounded like a douche bag. I was like Inspector Gadget. “Go, go gadget cerebral cortex function!” And instead my roller-skates popped out.
Worst of all, I never did find the barking dogs. And when I returned to my apartment, dejected and slightly creeped out by myself, I stood in the middle of the room for a second, savoring the silence, hoping that the barking had stopped. But then came one yap. Then two. Then a corresponding woof.
I distinctly heard, “ASSHOLE.”
Friday, April 10, 2009
(If you want the whole story – and trust me, you want the whole story – here it is. I mean, that woman is bonkers. I never knew what bonkers looked like until I saw her and thought, “That’s it. That’s bonkers.” Well played, local news. Well played.)
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Sometimes when Brooke and I are out drunk somewhere, we make lists. We like to think that, like crossword puzzles, it’s good exercise for the brain, ensuring that as we grow old together we won’t become demented, and therefore unlikable.
This is a list from many months ago that Brooke found last night while going through the notes on her iPhone. It goes back many years to an argument my friend Scott once made that it is impossible for a man to look cool while counting out exact change to pay for something. From the deep reach into your pocket to the way you sift the coins around in your palm with one finger before finally handing the cashier 17 cents pressed daintily between your thumb and forefinger. It’s a physical impossibility to look cool doing it.
And it got us to thinking: Who’s the coolest man we know (George Clooney, of course), and what else can’t he do without looking stupid?
• Sit in the back seat of a friend’s car.
• Eat a muffin.
• Q-tip ears.
• Apply chapstick.
• Try to put sunblock on his own back.
• Scoop ice cream.
• Hold a purse.
• Wait in line.
• Walk barefoot through airport security.
• Button fly jeans.
• Eat hot soup.
• Fill out a large Chinese take-out order form.
• Order tea.
• Drink a frozen umbrella drink.
• Get change from a cabby.
• Jump over a puddle.
* I’m not sure which one of us said this one, but I’m fairly positive it was Brooke.
Monday, April 6, 2009
Generally speaking, I’m not one to complain about spam.* With all the fancy filters and security programs they have nowadays, it’s not as though I find myself wading through 50+ emails about penis enlargement or more penis enlargement. In fact, I find it kind of funny that somewhere in
the world a Denny’s, there is a person who has received an email from a Sudanese attorney desperate to unload his deceased client’s fortune and thought, “Finally, my ship has come in!”
But then I got this email the other day:
Job spam? Really? You know times are tough when the best way to get people to fork over personal information is to get them to apply for a job.
That’s some serious social commentary. Think about it: If you assume that spammers tailor their scam topics for maximum effectiveness (i.e. that which is most desirable to the largest group of people), it’s safe to assume that five years ago all anyone wanted a better orgasm. The economy was doing so well and The Container Store so totally organized our lives that the only thing left to worry about was climaxing like a rock star. That’s pretty impressive.
But now apparently we live in a depressing world where jobs are cooler than vaginal penetration. And not even fucking awesome jobs like Astronaut Surgeon or whatever Tom Hanks did in Big, but an entry level position at an advertising agency. Sure, the job requirements may be lax (no one’s thinking, “Solving problems? Doing two things at once? This clearly isn’t for me”), but the main draws of the job include “drawing up reports” and “following security procedures.”
Not only that, but the fact that they’re offering you a job position “according with your skills and experience level,” which basically means, “We don’t know you, but we’re pretty sure you’re unsuccessful.” Meaning that some poor sap is going to get sucked into this scam by thinking, “Well, it’s better than being unemployed.”
So today, I do have a problem with spam. Not because it’s clogging my inbox, but because it’s a well known fact that sympathy causes crow’s feet. So fuck you for making me feel something, spam. You may not have gotten my personal information, but you stole something much more valuable: my heart.
* The emails, not the canned meat. I’ll bitch about meat in a can all I want, especially after Richard Velazquez’s mom called me a “picky eater” for refusing to try it while having dinner at his house in the fifth grade. I remember thinking that if being a picky eater meant not eating spam, then I was okay with that.