Saturday, December 26, 2009

Well Tonight Thank God It's Them, Insteeead of Yoooou!!

Christmas music stinks, no?

Well some of it is okay. A Charlie Brown Christmas by Vince Guaraldi Trio comes to mind. Anything by Nat King Cole works for me, too. He could probably have cut a CD of him singing the phone book and I'd buy extra copies.

For the most part, though, Christmas music is ├╝ber-lame. "Santa Baby" is a horrible, horrible song. Other tunes find respected artists taking well-loved Christmas melodies and massacring them; thank you, Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart, for taking the somewhat-tolerable "Winter Wonderland" and making it incredibly annoying.

"Baby, It's Cold Outside" is a horrendous song. I don't know what would ever have prompted anyone to write, sing, or enjoy this song. It levels the playing field by being equally horrid whether sung by the best or the blandest. Every single girl singing this song has sounded exactly the same since the day this travesty was written. And does no one else find this song incredibly sketchy?

The first time I heard "Dominic the Donkey", I thought it was a bald-faced ethnic joke that I wasn't in on. It turns out it's a straight-faced holiday tune and every Italian I know LOVES it. Joke's on me, I guess. I'd like to thank the anonymous customer last week who answered my rhetorical question ("And really, when you think Christmas, what animal do YOU think of?") with a brilliantly witty reply ("Asses, definitely"). Well done, young lady. Marry me.

Back to the task at hand. The last thing we need is more Christmas music; every artist seems to pump out more of the same old crap every year. Wouldn't it be great if we just had one excellent, definitive collection of only good Christmas music? A CD that was so good that Christmas music would be considered as having 'been done' and today's artists would just leave it alone?

Ladies and gentlemen, your prayers have been answered. I have cut a Christmas CD, just in time to be the hot "impulse buy" while you're standing in line waiting to return the XXXL underwear your creepy uncle Timothy gave you. Feast your eyes, and ears, on the final word on Christmas music: A One Hand Clapping Christmas.
Check out what consumers are saying about this collection!

"Eminently regift-able!"

"Less uninspired than the other dreck, but only marginally so."

"Eminem's guest verse on 'If I Hear Mariah Carey One More Time...' is simply inspired, but it's exceedingly uncomfortable. This is still the high mark of the CD."

"'Holy $#@% Dude, It's Freezing Out There' may never be a holiday classic, but it certainly may become the so-bad-it's-good ironic hit of the season."

"Mostly comprehensive, but how could any collection not include 'Silver Bells (It's Christmastime and It's Sh*tty)'?

"Makes for an excellent beverage coaster!"

Don't delay. Pick up a copy or seven at your local record store, and unwind to the soothing sounds of the holiday season before it's over, or...

Well, pick it up for next year then.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Doctor Love, Ph. D

Every now and then I allow a guest columnist to do my work for me. Please welcome the good Doctor. - Ed.

Good evening there, gentle friends. Let's turn the lights down low for just a second. Doctor Love, Ph. D., is making a house call. How about we go through the mailbag and see if we can cheer up some hearts, no?

Dear Doctor Love,
I have been dating the same girl for over two years and we are madly in love!! We met as freshmen at Uxbridge Technical Institute, and from that first glance... well, let's just say, I knew! It took her a few weeks for her to come around but after being persistent she finally agreed to dinner, and the rest is history! She's been there for me through everything, but there's something I want to know.
This is the first serious relationship I've ever been in. How do I know if she is The One? I have nothing to compare this relationship to. What happens when we leave UTI? I'm afraid to bring up the subject with her, and I don't want to upset either of us. Most of all, I'd really hate to lose her. What should I do?

- Uneasy in Uxbridge


Dear Uneasy,

Wow, what a girl! You're a lucky man, sir. She sounds like a once-in-a-lifetime catch. I think you should dump her.

There are two reasons for that. First, you're a creepshow. You kept asking her out for dinner, even after she said no more than once? Last time I checked, that's called stalking--unless you're attractive, in which case, it's romantic. Secondly, you've only got two years left of college!! There's a lot of drinking that you haven't done yet! You should have been out with the guys from freshman orientation onward. I say break the seal on that one and get going. As a bonus, breaking up with her will help ease your descent into the life-affirming pleasures of alcohol abuse. Best of luck to both of you with... um... UTI.

Dear Doctor Love,
Hello! I am 29 years old and I've been single for over two years! I feel like I'm a smart, outgoing, funny, and upbeat girl, and I love being social. My friends also tell me I'm a really good listener and always dependable. I try to meet guys--in class, at the bars, on the bus--nothing seems to work! What should I do?

Worried in Westchester


Dear Worried,

Are you ugly? I feel like you might be ugly. Pair off with another ugly person and move up north. That's probably the best thing for all of us.

Dear Doctor Love,
Hey, long-time reader, first time writer. Listen, I know that this has been the subject of many second-rate sitcoms and stand-up comedy acts, but I really need someone to give it to me straight. Every time I meet a girl that I'm interested in, we hit it off... but then I find out she only thinks of me as a friend. Every time. What should I do?

Misfiring in Manhattan


Dear Misfiring,

Lemme let you in on a little secret. You are perpetually stuck in the "friend zone". You probably already know this, but I wanted to make sure we were clear. "Friend zone". "Zone of friends". "Oh-no-no-he's-great-but-we're-just-pals". How many weddings have you been to?

Here's the deal. Much like our homely friend Worried in Westchester, you are also probably not attractive. You have everything women want, except looks. As it turns out, until women reach stage 5 (or "old maids", if you bought my book), women want to be seen with someone hotter than their girlfriends' boyfriends. In the meantime, they're happy to keep you around as a friend because you're a schmuck and you buy them stuff. The best you can hope for is pity sex on your birthday, and you really can't afford that much wine. So here's the plan.

Make sure they all have your phone number--when they're staring down the big Four-Oh, they'll call. In the meantime, bolt town with "Worried in Westchester" and have an absolute blast. Out of the public eye, but still. I hope it's fun. Otherwise, you'll be stuck as a maid of honor your entire life.

Dear MR O'CONNELL,
This is your FINAL NOTICE. We still have not received your payments for services or your late fee. Your current balance is $347.25 and must be paid, in full, by DECEMBER 25 2009. If we have not received your payment by this date, we will be forced to suspend your utilities, effective immediately.

Sincerely,
ConEdison


Dear Ed,

I also enjoy utilizing suspenders. Merry Christmas!!

Dear Doctor Love,
My girlfriend of three years accepted my marriage proposal last week, and I couldn't be happier!! Unfortunately, we seem to have hit an unexpected problem. Even after I had received her father's permission (we're old-fashioned, what can I say?) it appears that her family is against our getting married, on account of my not being Catholic. What should I do?

Questioning in Queens


Dear Questioning,

First off, I could have a field day with your pen name, except I've been reprimanded several times by my "progressive" editor that I need to respect all people of the rainbow. Okay, then. Though that would explain why you aren't Catholic.

Anyway... I'd try to get creative and see if you can burn a smiley face into a slice of toast. Then, run over to her parents' pad (seriously, the breathlessness adds to the rouse) and say that the blessed Saint Rocco of Rochester has appeared in your toast. You'll get the honeymoon paid for, too. Godspeed, er... best of luck to you.

Dear DF,
You're a really sweet, wonderful guy, but I think we should just be friends. I hope you're not upset.

Love,
Rebecca from your lit class

I... I don't know how that... Hey, I think we have time for one more letter!!

Dear Doctor Love,
How can I keep the swimsuit issue from coming into our home this Valentine's Day? It's my husband's subscription.

Offended in Orange, NJ


Dear Offensive,

Your husband is a lucky man. Do any pre-teen boys live in your neighborhood? Pay one of them a can of beer to sit by your mailbox on February 9th and wait for the mailman. Don't even tell him to take the magazine; just have faith. I'm sure your fears will be allayed, you old bag.

Well, America, that is all the time we have for tonight. Remember, if you have a burning love issue, and you didn't hear about it on Seinfeld, write to the good doctor. Thank you so much for curling up with our latest heart-to-heart, and until next time, don't drink and surf the net. Au revoir et slut!

Editor's note: The editor sincerely regrets the above typo, as well as most of the content of this article. We hope you will excuse the oversight(s).

Adventures in Education, Chapter 15

Diary of a Wimpy Kid, copyright Jeff Kinney

Seventh Grade ELA, 3rd Period
Teacher: "We've discussed man vs. man, man vs. nature, man vs. world, and man vs. self. What's the central conflict of this novel?"
Student: "I have to go to the bathroom."
Teacher: "That's your central conflict, Evan."
Student: "Actually, it's more like my lower half."

Friday, November 20, 2009

Not a Cat Person.

To begin this story properly, we must journey back through the mists and sands of time. Imagine, if you will, a time much like your own, but far, far more primitive. A happier, more innocent time, when the air was cleaner and the sun shone just a little bit brighter. Yes, I'm talking about August 30th, 2009.

That day, as I began lugging my awesome stuff down the awesome hall of my awesome new apartment building in awesome New York City, I was eager to find my awesome room and check out my awesome digs. Before I could get there, however, I noticed a living, breathing impediment. Standing between me and my door, as if to guard the hall, was a small, black feline, eyeing me suspiciously.

HOLY CRAP! A BABY PANTHER!!!

It turns out that this menacing creature was not in fact a panther, but a smaller species of panther called a house cat. The irony of a house cat living in an apartment was not lost on this fine English major; what a great teacher I'll make someday! With regard to the problem at hand, however, I did what any brave man worth his salt would do: I scurried past, whimpering and refusing to make eye contact before locking my door behind me (once I figured out how to work the lock).

The next few weeks went by without incident. Occasionally, I would exit the elevator and head toward my room when the coast looked clear, but at the last minute the walking embodiment of terrible luck would dart out into the hall and stare at me. I count myself as fortunate to still be here to talk to you today. I don't know why it refrained from eating me on the spot, but somehow, it let me live.

(See comment thread for photo credits)

This pattern would no doubt have recurred ad infinitum were it not for the intervening hand of my roommate's girlfriend, whom we'll call Liz. Liz, winner of the Kindest Person Ever Award seven years running, loves cats. She immediately fell in love with Annie (the baby panther/"cat") and allowed it to follow her into our room while I was away being The Man somewhere. This would normally not alarm me; I have lived with animals before (men's rugby team, junior year of college). However, a precedent had been set. You see, apparently Annie had what my college roommates could only dream of: memory (especially of the night previous). And you bet your Aunt Sally the Cat Lady that she remembered where our room was and how nice my sneakers smelled.

Annie is here all the time now. It's more than a daily thing. She might actually spend more waking hours in our room than I do. Multiple times a day, I will hear the sleigh-bell on her collar bouncing along until she is at our door, followed by rather pitiful meowing. Once I relent (and I usually do, because I'm a puss), Annie will charge headlong into our room without so much as a hello and proceed to jump on something.

Last week, she hopped up on the table and took a nap on the textbook I was reading (admittedly, it was a pretty boring book, and if she didn't fall asleep on it, I probably would have). She also cannot get enough of my bookshelf, or my bed, or Spike the Wannabe Cactus (the aloe vera plant I bought from Trader Joe's). She hogs my laptop and checks out the bathroom way too much. Wednesday night I found out--the hard way--that she hasn't been de-clawed. And at the present moment she is napping on my bed, which I didn't give her permission to do. I imagine soon she will wake up and ask if she can has my cheezburger.

I guess I understand why some people might be cat people, but I'm not one of them. I'm not a mean guy, but I just happen to hold the unpopular opinion that it isn't always playtime, and I have to get some work done (or blog about it), and occasionally I'd like to sleep in my own bed (preferably if it doesn't smell like fur). A small, carnivorous animal meowing at my door ten times a day is, surprisingly, not something I look forward to. Isn't it a bit presumptuous to just drop by all the time? At least bring a coffee cake or something.

Why anyone would own a panther at all is beyond me.

150th Post!

...or 27th, if you only count the decent ones.

In honor of this important milestone, I would like someone to throw me a party in East Egg. If anyone reading this could get on that, I'd appreciate it. I'll assume good faith and head over now.

Wow, 150 posts!!1! Never thought my crummy little blog would make it this far. I'd like to thank the good people at Google for making this farce possible. Booze all around. Let's hear it for pseudo-milestones.

Still Not Ready for Holiday Music (but this is fine).

Bob Dylan has done many surprising things during his career. This music video is right up there, though.

I'm not saying it's busting out an electric guitar at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965 (blasphemy!!), but this is pretty unexpected nevertheless. Dylan put out a Christmas CD this year, with proceeds going to Feeding America, but hipsters everywhere are rejoicing in what must be shameless irony. Or is it?

Here is Bob's take on "Must Be Santa", accompanied by a happenin' polka band and a holiday party that straddles the middle ground between A Christmas Carol and Animal House. I think this is great, personally. The video's developments will distract you from the lyrics, but see if you can catch the additional names on the list of reindeer.

Enjoy. Or else there's something considerably wrong with you.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Ernest Hemingway Approach to Writing Papers: A Fun Game for English Majors


For 1 player.

Game Pieces:
1 tedious assignment
1 bottle of whiskey or suitable liquor
1 typewriter

Gameplay:
1) Write your name and heading at the top of the paper.
2) Pop open the bottle and pour glass #1.
3) Alternate writing and drinking.
4) Consider yourself in a race against time.

Winning the Game
:
Finish the paper before you finish the bottle.

Alternate Gameplay
:
Ask for an extension and go out drinking.

Bonus Points:
Gesture towards crotch; yell, "I got your extension right here!!"

A Translation Guide for Instant Message Speak

You're pretty funny, right? Like you've got a couple zingers up your sleeve, and every now and then you bust out a witticism while schmoozing with friends. But when you're chattin' it up online, how do you know if the person on the other end finds you as hilarious as you find yourself? For that matter, how can you be sure you're correctly reading anything in txtspeak?

Help is on the way. Here's a rough translation guide for you:

WHAT THEY SAY = WHAT THEY MEAN

what up = entertain me.

hey = why did you IM me?

n2m, u? = a lot of things really, and i don't feel like getting into any of them at the moment, but thank you for asking.

just chillin' = i've been creeping on your facebook photos for, like, ten minutes.

ha = not funny.

haha = i am recognizing that you are trying to be funny, and i am placating you with a response.

hahaha = you are funny.

hahahaha = i am laughing.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA = i am laughing at you, not with you.

you up to anything later? = entertain me.

i think i'm staying in tonight = i'm going out, but not with you.

i've got sooooo much work to do = i have as much work as anyone else does.

yeah i'll call you if we do anything = i have no intention of calling you.

:-) = i am a :-( person fishing for a :-) from you so i can be :-) too.

hmmm = i have no response for you but feel like filling the awkward silence. maybe you'll keep talking or change the subject for me.

nice = i hereby bestow upon you the ultimate male comment of approval. your taste is excellent and you are a fine example to us all. rock the fuck on.

what have you been up to lately? = entertain me.

? = i am skeptical

whaaaaaat? = i am, like, extremely skeptical

whatttttttt? = i am, like, extremely skeptical and do not grasp the difference between consonants and vowels.

;-) = let's do it.

g2g = someone more interesting just showed up. i will still be online for another hour, but i'll pretend that i'm not.

kthxbai = my sense of hipster irony places me above all you sheeple. i am witty and cool and shop at american apparel, but i bring my own bag.

Please Clean the Lint Screen

To borrow a saying from my grandmother, why is laundry such a pain in the patooshki? I mean seriously! My grandmother can turn a phrase.

No but 4 realz yo, where are those magical laundromats that you see in music videos and stuff where lots of co-eds hang out, and gorgeous girls decide to throw what they've got on in the wash, and kids line the floor with detergent for a do-it-yourself Slip N Slide? I want to go to that laundry room, not the one in the basement of this building, where granny panties appear mysteriously and people give me dirty looks when I pull my Halloween costume out of the dryer. Seriously, folks.

Although, to be fair, this was my Halloween costume:


POST-SCRIPT: When I was in college, I accidentally left my clothes in the dryer too long. When I finally remembered and ran into the laundry room, I feared the worst. Instead, some girl had folded my clothes into neat, adorably coordinated piles. I don't know who you are, m'lady, but I love you. Really. Please come find me in New York so we can Snuggle.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

If You Don't Understand Math, Just Skip Ahead To The Next Post Where I Make A Naked Lady Joke.

Sometimes I feel like this is very, very accurate, and it makes me not want to blog anymore. But then, I think, "Hey! I should blog about that!!" and that feeling goes away.

Courtesy of xkcd.com, which I understand sometimes.

Celeb Spotting

Today I hurried around the corner and brushed past a lady in a white jacket. I turned around and, low and behold, it was Emma Thompson. Well, I thought, I've been seen in public with a celebrity today.

As I met up with the students that I was meeting up with at the meet-up point where we were going to meet up, the students that I met up with asked if I had seen Kate Winslet, too. I look back around the corner and who should be walking away? Kate Winslet. In order to not get made fun of, I needed an excuse for missing so obvious a movie star. So, I said that I didn't recognize her with clothes on. That worked.

Living in New York City is fun.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Everyone Really Wants To Know All About Me!!

... as they probably should. I'm important.


Apparently, I am a dreamer. I am glad to have this information and eagerly await the day that I might wake up.

Source: http://www.mypersonality.info, and procrastination

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Wrap It Up

Myself, to a few patrons, as an organizer of our Grad Hall Talent Show Preliminary:

"We're also giving out free care packages from the Health Center. And yes, those are condoms for those of you fortunate enough to have a use for such things. As for me, I like to blow them up into balloons and then Sharpie my hopes and dreams onto them. When they pop, you can really hear the symbolism. Anyway, thanks for coming!"

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Do-Nut Doo-Wop

I saw these fine fellows in 2002 in the middle of Absolutelynowhere, Ohio. They go by the stage name Chapter 6. For this number, they graciously allowed their bass (one of the lowest, most resonant basses I've ever heard) to take the solo spotlight. He had previously delivered an obscenely smooth bassline on "Mercy Mercy Me".

Please remember, before viewing: This man's voice part is very low. Bass II. Bass III, if there is such a thing. There might be. He'd be one. Enjoy.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Beats on Repeat

Ever get really fixated on a song? Like, for whatever reason you just cannot get it out of your head, but you don't actually mind, because you really like that song? As soon as it's over, you want to hear it again? I've been going through a few of these cycles recently.

Last month, I was sweating this song pretty hard. It's from Detroit native Mayer Hawthorne, and if Andre 3000 ever did a Stax ballad, it would sound a whole lot like "Just Ain't Gonna Work Out".


If you can pick up the pieces of your blown mind after that, I'd like to slow it down a little bit with the song that has been stuck in my head all week. I never really cared much about this song until I saw it performed on Sessions at West 54th, but "Missing the War" by Ben Folds Five is the kind of poignant song that can sink in over time--until one day you wonder why you haven't really given it the attention it deserves.

The studio version is good, but the live version used to open their Sessions show is fantastic. Ben's voice is in fantastic shape, and the seperation in the mix gives you a great idea of what all three musicians in the Five are doing. The harmonies are beyond excellent. You can listen to it now, or download it here for your iPod. You're welcome.

Ben Folds Five - "Missing the War (live)"

Friday, October 23, 2009

Balloon Heads

It is not often that we are blessed with the opportunity to laugh, guilt-free, at someone else's problems. That said, when the aforementioned Mr. Someone Else created all of his own problems, and has a hilariously bad haircut to boot, feel free to yuk it up. Ladies and gentlemen, Richard Heene!

Yes, when Balloon Boy's father was first suspected of maybe kinda sorta not really being all that surprised to find his son hiding in the attic, he asked the press to leave his family alone via the nontraditional isolationist approach of holding a press conference and dragging his suddenly cheered up family onto Larry King Live. Besides needing to be reminded to hug his son on TV, Heene seemed fantastically prepared for prime time. As for Falcon, or "Balloon Boy" as he will be known by his classmates, not so much. As you've seen by now, Falcon spilled the beans about the family's TV aspirations, the sheriff called them out, and finally today Balloon Mom came clean with the hoax.

So where does this leave disillusioned, jaded America? If the Balloon Boy incident of 2009 was a fake, who else is lying to us?!?! Not Anderson Cooper, that's for sure. Richard Henne's TV theme really is catchy.

What's that? Oh yes, Balloon Dad has a theme song. Please have yourself a merry little guffaw:

Alternately, just stare at Erica Hill and pretend that she'd rather flirt with you than Anderson Cooper. Or her husband.

So now that his dreams of "Richard Heene: Psyience Detective" (sic) are deflated (thank you, tip your waitresses!), we get the pleasure of having a good point-and-laugh over this buffoon. It's always okay to lie to people, you know, like police officers and eh... your own kids, as long as you get a TV show out of it. Personally, I'm proud of him for not settling for a mere appearance on Wife Swap (I wouldn't mind settling for Erica Hill, but that's neither here nor wherever Falcon is today). His family should be on TV, dammit. Just because they run the wrong way when they see a storm, are we going to call their nerdy, fringe science endeavors stupid?

Yes, yes we are. You're a douche, Richard Heene, and 300 million Americans know it. You got called out by the AP. Ouch. Hell, even Octomom can probably see how desperate for attention you are. Reality TV is slowly choking humanity, and even those bottom-feeders wouldn't sink low enough to follow your kinda weird family around. Your lack of self-perception is as staggering as your choice in hairstyle. Seriously though, 1997 called. No, that's not a TV station, calm down.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Worst Blogger Ever!

Hello.

I would like to take time out of my busy, busy schedule (actually, it's weird saying that and not being sarcastic) to acknowledge my fans all over the world--especially the chap from Paris who clicked by yesterday via Google Search in an attempt to learn more about the totally-not-happening "Best of 2000-2010" U2 compilation. Thanks for not leaving a comment, Pierre! Just ring us here in Amurrica the next time France is occupied, k? Thx.

Anyway, assuming you are not Pierre, who totally sucks, I would like to apologize for not having written any substantial updates in a while. Truth be told, English Education programs require lots of reading and writing (who knew?) and I more or less get my fill of creativity by making stuff up in class to sound impressive. I have a couple of entries drafted but I'm not ready to post them yet. This reticence on my part is certainly rare; there are at least 45 entries in this blog that definitely read like the rough drafts that they are. This, incidentally, is the 138th entry--a number of no significance whatsoever.

So, what should I write about? I have lots of entries cooking up that deal with music, but no one likes those (except casual U2 fans from France). My guide to pulling off looking like a native New Yorker could be way better, too, so I need more time. I could bang out some hilarious haiku real quick, but the last blog I wrote for had that and was kidnapped in March, never to be seen again. I suppose I could write a quick compare and contrast, highlighting the upsides of the Patriots wearing throwback uniforms for a quarter of their season this year, but I'd like y'all to stay awake too. You shouldn't actually need another coffee after reading this blog.

Writer's block sucks, no?

It would be a shame if my 3,000th visitor checked out this blog and read this lame entry on the top of the first page (by the way, we're sitting at 2,925 awesome visitors and 1 douche from France). Seriously though, Pierre, I want to beat you over the head with a stale baguette. Don't ever come back to my blog.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Friday, October 9, 2009

Top 5 Writers Who've Lived on Bleecker Street


1) Herman Melville

2) Thomas Paine

3) James Fenimore Cooper

4) Allen Ginsberg

5) Me

Monday, October 5, 2009

Help Wanted

Last night, I had a dream. Wait, there's more! In this dream, two absolutely genius blog ideas came into my head while I was at a bar. Dream Me attempted to text message someone, most likely "Real Me", to get the ideas down before either Me (Mii?) forgot them. This morning, I woke up and checked my phone before realizing that that was the stupidest idea I've ever had.

I'd still like to figure out what I wanted to write about, though. Two of the ideas involved were Chinese food and the snooze button. I forgot the rest. If you can make sense out of that and remind me what fantastic literary excellence I was about to bless the world with, I'd be grateful. kthxbye.
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Is This Post Ironic? Discuss.

“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else's opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”
- Oscar Wilde

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Can I Interest You In Throwing This Away For Me?

In New York City, people are always standing on the sidewalk trying to get you to take flyers that you don't want advertising services that you want even less. Today in the span of about fourteen seconds, I was handed a postcard about a yoga class (by a very attractive, smiling blonde), a flyer for a paper writing service, and a poker chip worth $25 so I can bet on my grades online. Seriously.

So naturally, I'm thinking... if I play my cards right, I could be working on my flexibility with the very attractive smiling blonde girl while unemployed English majors write my papers and simultaneously tank my grades so that I can make bank.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Misadventures in Education

Thursday, Grad School, 4:11pm
Reading Group Discussion

Student #1: "Well, 'Warriors Don't Cry' is written by Melba Pattillo, who was one of the nine students to integrate Central High School in Little Rock in 1957."
Student #2: "That was when the president had to call in Air Force troops, right?"
Student #1: "Right. So our actual class activity should be informed by segregation."
Student #3: "There were other autobiographies to come out from those students. Did you ever see The Ernest Green Story?
DF: [joining conversation late] "Is that like Ernest Goes To Camp?"
Student #3: "...no..."

[The rest is silence.]

Monday, September 28, 2009

A Decaf Post

A "decaf" post means "lower your expectations".

As I finish my decaf Cafe Americano (decaficano?), it occurs to me how apropos the recipe for this drink is (at least in its caffeinated version). Espresso and hot water. Straight and to the point. Wake me the hell up, now. Seems to fit with the international perception of the busy, business-first, socially inept American, no? I think they should explore this line of thinking further with other coffee options. Picture this S'bucks menu:

Cafe Red State
Espresso & cream, kept seperate but Equal™.

Cafe Blue State
Five-bean blend, but in smaller cups that everyone gets for free.

Cafe Canadiano
Similar to Cafe Americano but weaker and served cold.

Cafe Franco
Similar to Cafe Canadiano but weaker and a bit fruity.

Cafe Anglo
Stale Cafe Americano, leaves all three teeth stained.

Cafe Eire
40% ABV

Cafe South Africano
see Cafe Red State

Cafe Somaliano
Delicious imported blend stolen from you while walking on the sidewalk.

Cafe Iraqi
Anyone who claims that indigestion is not a weapon of mass destruction is a damned dirty liar.

Cafe Ruskie
Sludge. Silty, delicious sludge. No, I've had it, that's what it is. *formerly known as Cafe Communiccino

Cafe Sarku Japan
Cat.

Friday, September 25, 2009

My Buddy Info

Every time I sign into AIM, and the top of the window reads, "DF is available", it reminds me that... dammit... yes, yes I am.

Unrelated Note: Did you ever laugh when you go to sign in and it says "Negotiating..."? I do. Who are you negotiating with? I'd like to think that there is some mid-level flunkie who has to plead to Mr. Big, kneeling on the floor at his desk overlooking his Burbank vista, imploring him to find it in his heart to allow me to sign in. I really, truly hope that this happens.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Words That I Think Sound Amusing

bucket
trousers
duck
fussbudget
spleen
kumquat
diminutive
turnstyle
farcical
pantaloons
blog
awkward
waist
humdinger
"the fundamentals of our economy are strong"

Big, Shiny New Stuff!

I've added a search bar on the left panel (ooh!) and some feedback options below each post (aah!). Feel free to say what's really on your mind by using one of the pre-selected feedback terms.

*As per usual, photo completely unrelated.

Thoughts I Thought I Thought

Round 1: Food is way too expensive. Why can't I feed myself for like $3? I don't care what anyone says; we don't have socialism until I don't have to shell out $8.50 for a sandwich and a drink.

Round 2: If the grocery store across the street continues to sell "Milwalkee Best" for $3.99 a six-pack, I am going to develop a taste for "Milwalkee Best".

Round 3: One-way streets are fantastic for pedestrians. All cities should be like this.

Round 4: WHY do we have to still buy textbooks for school? We already have things like Netflix and Kindle. Is it unreasonable to come up with some form of renting textbooks? I don't want to own most of these anyway! Then you sell back a book in the exact same condition cause you barely used it and you get maybe 20% of what you paid for it. Why do we put up with this? Ridiculous.

Round 5: Hello, future employers! And thank you for stalking me. If you're looking for a context to put my blog in, please know that, in the future, I will refer to this period of my life as when I was trying to "find myself".

Round 6: I am so impressed with the stuff I haven't done yet.

Round 7: I'm also the most modest person I know. Ask me about my humility sometime!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

There Is Hope Yet

Sometimes, particularly after reading a YouTube comment thread, I get a bit down about the human race. So many ignorant people say so many dumb things. In today's world, being loud makes you right, and if you don't hold an extreme view, your opinion is neither heard nor valued. Paul Simon once sang that "a man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest". How true that is. We pick our news outlets according to their bias, and still only take in the pieces that fit our own view. Anyone else is an idiot. It's amazing how uneducated and misinformed people can be while still verbally abusing others for daring to think differently than they do. Don't even get me started on the grammar mistakes, either.

Yet, through all this mess, I occasionally find a piece like this one on the 10 Funniest Hijacked Amazon Customer Reviews from this week's Telegraph (UK), and it almost singlehandedly restores my faith in humanity.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Facebook According to DF, Part 5

H'okay, so... since coming back to school, I have rediscovered the magical time waster that is Facebook. A long time ago, I came to the realization that I was in it too deep and could not just walk away from the often-changing social media site. It is the primary means of contact with more than half of the people I care to know anything at all about, which is strange if you think about it.

I am probably a low-grade phonophobe (yes, that's a real thing) and only pick up the phone to talk to close friends from home, or people I am expecting to hear from. If I don't recognize the number, I will never pick it up. Generally, I get a creeping feeling of claustrophobia when I am on the phone, especially indoors. It's really bizarre. As such, social media like Facebook can help me avoid awkward phone interaction with people I don't really want to talk to anyway! Nifty.

So if I were to ever try to leave Facebook, I know I'd just come right back, bringing a bundt cake and asking if I could come inside and we could "just talk for a moment" (yes, apparently my return to Facebook would be a Lifetime movie). But it's stuff like this Friend Collection Photo Grid stuff that really makes it hard to stay.

Uck! Look at that crap. Sweet tripping grandma on a treadmill, I loathe this stuff. Let's think, for a second, about why I'd be looking at Facebook photos. I am either:

a) Bored
b) Supposed to be doing something else

So when I just see annoying, juvenile crud like this, it either turns my boredom into slight internet rage, or it reminds me that I should be doing something else. Either way, I am forced to reexamine my sad existence, as I note that ten times a day I check Facebook to see... this.

Make a collage of your friends! I'm sorry, is this arts and crafts hour at Sunday school? Check out the SuperFriend App! I'd like you to check out a ditch. Tag your friends who fit each description! How about I tag your face with a size 10 dress shoe?

Facebook, I recognize that you are a fairly necessary evil. I cannot stay in touch with everyone any other way, because I only have so many cell phone numbers and nobody uses Instant Messenger anymore. You are also among the few things I check online, because email = work (that's no fun) and CNN gets more depressing by the minute. But if I sign in one more time to see that I'm tagged yet again by some 19 year old as "The Gentle One", I'm going to throw a refridgerator off of my balcony.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

My Parents Really Believe in My Education

Recently, my parents found two words in the Wall Street Journal that they didn't understand ("peregrinatory" and "obdurateness"), and chalked up their use to the pretension of the author. Rather than pull out one of the many dictionaries in my house, they elected to circle the words and mail the paper to me for clarification.

Food Shopping During an Economic Depression is Depressing

I've intentionally tried to cut back on the amount of unnecessary snack foods in my budget, but when this week's major purchase was an ice cube tray (and I'm actually excited about it), well... it's just sad. Get me some dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets up in this piece!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Point/Counterpoint

"Taylor, I'm really happy for you. I'll let you finish, but Beyonce had one of the best videos of all time! One of the best videos of all time!"


"YOU LIE!"