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.


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

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 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, 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:, 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.