Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Usual Suspects: Library-Style


Oh sweet, sweet Saturday.

For most people today is the beginning of a relaxing, restful weekend.

For me, today is Friday. For me, today is one of the longest days of the week. For me, today is a warzone.

See here’s the thing about Saturdays…especially when we’re still technically on winter one, literally NO ONE from MIT is going to be here. Instead, I’m going to get a whole slew of crazies from the outside world that have the most asinine requests/demands/pleas that I’m going to be dealing with for the entire shift.

Here are the six types of crazies that usually wander in on Saturdays…

Saturday Crazy Type One – The Electronically Handicapped

These folks are usually quite visible from the onset. They wander in and head straight for the computers and they make sure to setup camp at one of the three computers facing me, as to ensure they’ll be in my peripheral vision. They then huff and puff and mumble to themselves for awhile. This charming process is generally followed by them frantically pounding the keys and wiggling the mouse in an ill-fated attempt to “speed up the internet.”

Often times they are here to check their email, look at online photos, go to eBay and/or look up a whole bunch of crap for their job that could make or break their career. Yeah, I want that type of pressure on my shoulders…thanks.

The Electronically Handicapped will require tons of attention, tons of time and multiple explanations. Often you’ll find yourself completing whatever task they had set out to do, simply because it’ll shave about two hours off of the process that way.

These people will leave you feeling mentally superior, yet completely dead inside when you realize that you’ve spent an hour and a half of your time guiding them through the processes of printing a coupon to save $4.99 on an entrée at a local steakhouse.

Saturday Crazy Type Two – The Psychiatric Patient

These people—for some reason completely unbeknownst to me—seem to assume that the dude behind the desk is not only here to check out books, but also to listen to their entire life story.

A quick perusal of my job description proves that I am—in fact—NOT here to serve as a psychiatrist to any of these people. This fact, however, isn’t enough to keep them from yammering on-and-on-and-on about their kids, their jobs, their spouses, their rashes, etc, etc, etc…

These people need to be put down with tranquilizer darts, tagged and released back into the wilds of the Northern Maine…not unleashed upon poor library staff that are stranded at the desk with nowhere to run and hide.

By the time the Psychiatric Patient finally leaves, you are left feeling deflated, tired and in serious need of alcohol. These people are awful.

Saturday Crazy Type Three – World Conquerors

These folks are essentially harmless, but all-kinds of annoying and often require multiple reminders that they’re being a pain in the ass.

The World Conqueror usually wanders in with some sort of legitimate scholarly goal in mind, however, they also seem to think that if they throw their shit in all directions they have officially staked claim to the entire computing area.

You’ll usually see it start innocently enough. They put a coat on the chair beside them. Then a briefcase on the table, no worries, right?! WRONG! Within ten minutes they’ve got their coat, briefcase, umbrella, gloves, undies, can of Diet Coke, mismatched socks and glasses strewn all over the place an they’re blocking like three or four other computers and tweaking out any and every single time that someone comes near their things.

These people suck at life. They never had to share anything as a child and they assume that still applies. They will leave you feeling annoyed and more willing to share than ever before.

Saturday Crazy Type Four – Library Virgins

Again, this particular sect of crazies is virtually harmless, but will require an inordinate amount of attention. These are the folks that haven’t been in a library since the Carter administration and/or assume that the Dewey Decimal system is still the proverbial end-all, be-all of libraries.

(Note: these are the same folks who will ALWAYS ask what my major is.)

The Library Virgin will run a gamut of emotions ranging from fear and confusion to empathy and heartbreak when they realize that I am a dude and under the age of sixty. Apparently they are very set in the stereotypical “librarian” mindset.

This is also the group most likely to have no ability to comprehend why they aren’t allowed to borrow materials from our library. They’ll explain (read: rant) about how they pay taxes and pay my salary and blah…blah…blah. At which point I’ll have to explain the complete irrelevancy and inaccuracy of their entire argument. They often leave angry and confused and wondering why I wouldn’t just show them where they drawers with the card catalog were hiding.

Upon their departure you will generally feel an urge to log into Monster or CareerBuilder just to see who is hiring.

Saturday Crazy Type Five – The Alumni

These folks are the faction of Saturday Crazies that you’re most-likely to punch in the face. They are people who have graduated from MIT and assume that allows them the same rights and privileges as those who are currently enrolled.

They often want to look at their thesis or check out some books or something and you’ve got to go through the process of explaining that their thesis is in the archives and not available today or you’ve got to explain that as an alumnus they can still check out books, but they need to purchase a privilege card. Often times the Alumni will not handle these revelations well.

In fact, there is a pretty good chance that they will get huffy and tell you how ridiculous it is and you’ll have to nod along while they chastise you for the policies and practices of the library despite the fact that you’re a 25-year-old who spends his Saturdays listening to this bullshit and not one of the higher-ups who actually make policies and spend their Saturdays at home, bullshit-free.

When these people saunter out the door, you’ll feel enraged. Somewhere deep inside you’ll bust a blood vessel and think about how you never want to be an annoying pain in the ass at your alma mater.

Saturday Crazy Type Six – The Bat-Shit Crazy

These are my least favorite. These are the folks who could potentially waddle in, take a pooper on the copy machine and then be completely confused when you’re getting them trespassed from campus.

When the Bat-Shit Crazy wander in you immediately know…they are often here because they have been run out of every public library within walking distance and, as such, universities are the next logical destination.

Depending on the type of Bat-Shit Crazy patron you’re dealing with the interaction will vary greatly. They’ll either be the kind that bothers other (often legitimate) patrons, the kind that demands help for completely nonsensical tasks, they will ask to borrow money and/or use the phones, they’ll go online but won’t know where to go or what to do, they’ll start ranting and raving about the government (and it’s ALWAYS the government), they’ll abuse the equipment and finally…and these are my least favorite…the ones that think they know me and want to call me out and make a huge scene when I’m asking them to hit the road.

I have lots of people tell me that I look familiar and they think they know me from somewhere, but the Bat-Shit Crazy…they take it to a whole new level. It is like a bad episode of Jerry Springer and they think that I’ve somehow wronged them in the past and they just want to scream at me and blame all-kinds of stuff on me.

When these people leave (and/or are dragged kicking and screaming by the police) you’ve already decided that you’re going to go home and drink yourself into a coma that won’t end until Sunday afternoon…unfortunately, by the time you get home you feel so deflated that you just sit on your couch watching “City Slickers” on TBS thinking that Billy Crystal was never funny…but at least he doesn’t have to deal with the Bat-Shit Crazy. That lucky sumbitch!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Ryan Owes Me a Beer

Ryan Gray made me bleed from the face today.

Ryan is a bad, bad person.

I am sad.

Well, sad and bloody to be specific.

He owes me beer.

That is all.

Soundtrack of My Life

Okay, much like with the "25 Random Things" post from a few weeks back, this one started as another "chain letter" of sorts on Facebook/MySpace.

Once again, you're supposed to follow the instructions and then 'tag' twenty-or-so friends (or mortal enemies) at which point they are supposed to follow suit. Well I've been tagged a dozen or so times now, and I guess that means I should go ahead and give in to the mounting peer pressure.

Well for this one, you're supposed to create the sondtrack to your life. Luckily, I fully anticipate my life will be turned into a movie some day, so I'm really just saving the producers a ton of time later on.

Basically you're supposed to go through and put your music player of choice (iPod, iTunes, Windows Player, generic MP3 player, etc...) on 'random' and let it play. Then you just click next to find which song goes each major portion of your life that will require some musical accompaniment in the movie.

The point is that hopefully you'll get some really random stuff like you know, "Baby Got Back" for your death scene or "Fuck the Police" for your wedding scene. Sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn't. Mine came up fairly pedestrian, but I went ahead and put the random selections as well as the songs I think I'd actually choose.

Anyway, enough explanation, all of my Faithful Readers are smart peeps...I'm sure all ya'll have long since put the concept together...

Without further ado...this is my life as a movie soundtrack...

Opening Credits:
[random] “Night Shift” by O.A.R.
[my pick] “I Feel Home” by OAR

Waking Up:
[random] “Only Wanna Be With You” by Hootie and the Blowfish
[my pick] “Banana Pancakes” by Jack Johnson

First Day of School:
[random] “Old Habits” by Hank Williams Jr.
[my pick] “One Day” by Simple Plan

Falling In Love:
[random] “Hearts on Fire” by John Cafferty
[my pick] “Hanging by a Moment” by LifeHouse

1st date:
[random] “Boondocks” by Little Big Town
[my pick] “Anthem of Our Discovery” by Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers

[random] “Lucky Man” by The Verve
[my pick] “Dancing in the Dark” by Bruce Springsteen

HS Graduation:
[random] “Rooftops” by Lostprophets
[my pick] “Here’s to the Night” by Eve6

Life's OK:
[random] “The Pretender” by Jackson Browne
[my pick] “It’s a Great Day to Be Alive” by Travis Tritt

Breaking Up:
[random] “If I Were a Boy” by Beyonce
[my pick] “New York Minute” by the Eagles

[random] “These are My People” by Rodney Atkins
[my pick] “Gimmie Some Lovin’” by the Spencer Davis Group

[random] “Where Corn Don’t Grow” by Travis Tritt
[my pick] “The Dance” by Garth Brooks

Getting Back Together:
[random] “Hold on Hope” by Guided by Voices
[my pick] “Vienna” by Billy Joel

First Day of College:
[random] “What About Now” by Lonestar
[my pick] “Start the Day Early” by Stephen Kellogg & The Sixers

College Graduation:
[random] “Goodbye” by Audio Adrenaline
[my pick] “Leave the Memories Alone” by Fuel

[random] “Sweet Ballad” by Munchausen By Proxy
[my pick] “Far Away” by Nickelback

Birth of Child:
[random] “Give a Little Bit” by Goo Goo Dolls
[my pick] “Wonderwall” by Oasis

Final Battle:
[random] “No Easy Way Out” by Robert Tepper
[my pick] “In the End” by Linkin Park

Death Scene:
[random] “Gotta Be Somebody” by Nickelback
[my pick] “Run” by Snow Patrol

Funeral Song:
[random] “The Wrestler” by Bruce Springsteen
[my pick] “Learning to Fly” by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers

End Credits:
[random] “Measure of a Man” by Elton John
[my pick] “Don’t Stop Believin’” by Journey

Caution: Shitty Drivers

So there I was wandering into work.

I was doing the whole penguin-waddle thing because it’s icier than Angelina Jolie’s husband-stealing heart outside today and it seems that Boston/Cambridge is pretty much tapped out as far as combating winter goes.

I was shuffling my way through the intersection just before the stoplight was about to change and then—like three feet behind me—I hear this loud crashing noise.

I turn around to discover that some van just totally bashed into a tiny car and then tried to haul ass, but spun out on the ice in the intersection and ended up turned around with nowhere to go but head-on into the car it had already hit. I suppose, if he was feeling really ballsy he could try and pull some sort of crazy stunt and whip the van into reverse and haul ice toward Mass Ave gliding backwards on a sheet of ice.

Luckily, he wasn't a complete dumb-ass and he just gave up and put it in park while patiently waiting for a verbal onslaught from the driver of the tiny car.

Somewhere amidst all the chaos, I realized that I had been roughly one midget’s length away from getting all-kinds of destroyed by some rogue van driver with no respect for the conditions of the road.

…then I slipped and fell on my ass.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Public Service Announcement: Boys are Gross!

To the dude-nerds of MIT, specifically those of you who frequent the fourth-floor men’s room in the Barker Engineering Library, I implore you to flush.

Let’s be honest, Boys, it takes you like—what—two seconds to flush?! Yet for some reason unbeknownst to me, not a gol-darned one of you seems to find time to pull that little silver lever before you meander back to your algorithms, beakers and advanced thermodynamics.

Now do me a favor my nerdy friends, see how long it takes you to answer the following quandary: When it comes to horrendous stank…what’s the shelf-life of a dude’s pee once it’s been discharged from that inner-canteen that we loving call a bladder?!

I’m sorry my Dungeons and Dragons-loving friends, I cannot hear you?!

Lemme tell you, my nerdy friends…the answer is zero!!


There is no shelf-life for pee. The second it’s out of you, it’s in the air. The same goes for the opposite side of the bottom-half, my friends. So flush the freakin’ toilets!!

I don’t care what you’re donating to the library lavatories, flush it. Your philanthropic efforts and the vile stench that accompanies them are not wanted here.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Change of Heart...

You know, I’ve been doing some serious thinking lately.

In these mental ponderings I’ve come to the conclusion that Chester Cheetah does, in fact, deserve the ultimate blessing I can give…“legit street cred …Iowa-style.”

For the longest time I was sour toward ole Chester, but in time he’s won me over.

In our initial interactions I thought Chester was nothing more than some rip-off of Tony the Tiger and the Pink Panther. Plus he was sooooooo lame. The dude would show up and try to steal Cheetos from kids.

I mean come on, Chester, seriously?!

That bit has been done before. There’s a rabbit named Trix who has been running that same routine for years and doing it way better. Plus, come on dude, you’re a f’n cheetah. Just kill the kids and take the cheesy puffs, dude. Quit being such a tool.

Then he got two videogames. That’s right, at some point in the early-to-mid ‘90s a freakin’ snack-food mascot had not just one, but two videogames. Do you know what’s absolutely disheartening to a nine-year-old boy?! When they go to the store and they see that some cartoon cat from the Cheetos bag is on the cover of two videogames and that poor kid is never going to grace the cover of a videogame.

Although in retrospect I think I had it all wrong looking to be on the cover of a baseball game. I mean think about it, how bad-ass would a library-themed videogame be, huh?! Think “DieHard” in a library…with me playing the library-equivalent of John McClane!! Give it time to process, you know it sounds sweet!!

Anyway, somewhere around the Cheetah videogame phase, he was also supposed to have a cartoon. I remember my brother was really psyched for it. I think I beat my brother up a lot that year for that very reason. Anyway…something happened—probably logical reasoning—and the show never made it to the airwaves…or at least not in northwest Iowa.

Once the cartoon fell apart Chester went to overseas to earn some money and rebuild his credibility, but the Korean people did not give him the warm, Cheeto-filled reception he had anticipated and he returned to the states soon after. After the Korea-debacle Chester went through some hard times. He sort of vanished from the scene for awhile, looking to battle his demons and return to the scene a new man.

When he did return, it was as a wiser and more mature cheetah. He was no longer trying to steal Trix’s gimmick. Rumor has it Trix and Count Chocula got together and roughed him up “General Mills-style” at a night club a few years back. To this day all three parties refuse to comment on the allegations.

Without a doubt Chester had learned his lesson and was looking to make amends to all those from whom he’d tried to steal Cheetos in his younger, wilder days. Chester...or “Papa Chester” as he now prefers to be called…can now be found encouraging others to use their Cheeto-habits to help themselves as evidenced by many of his new television spots.

It is as a result of Chester’s impressive life turn-around I’m awarding him some “Iowa Street Cred.”

Use it wisely, “Papa Chester,” you’ve earned it!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Oh. Hell. Yes.

Okay, now I’m not going to pretend I’m even remotely political. Honestly, I just recently learned that “Conservative” and “Liberal” are just another way of saying “Republican” and “Democrat” (Right…I didn’t mix those up, did I?!).

I also don’t pay any attention to what’s going on politically or really with the country as a whole. (Worst Journalism Major…EVER!!)

If you asked me right now I couldn’t tell you who we’re at war with (assuming we are still in a war somewhere?!) and I couldn’t tell you what this recession is all about. All I know is that I’m rapidly working my way to the poorhouse and that sorta blows.

I am, however, fully aware that a big ole chunk of the free world would enjoy nothing more than to come along and give America a swift kick in the stones. I am aware that W wasn’t exactly the rockstar (some) people expected as president. I am totally aware that electing a president because he is ‘the guy you’d most like to have a beer with,’ is not a wise move (save that for new hires in the library).

I am also fully aware that Obama—the only dude I’ve voted for to actually win an election—has got a game-plan. He’s going to create some jobs. He’s going to try to stimulate the economy (hopefully with some more handouts to “Joe the Librarian”). He’s going to do a little PR-work of sorts to mend fences with the aforementioned ‘wannabe stone kickers’ of the world. Basically the dude is going to try and fix eight-years of us shooting ourselves in the foot with a bazooka.

It ain’t going to be easy.

And it sure as hell ain’t going to be quick.

There’s a good chance he’ll be long done with what I’m hoping will later be referred to as his first of two terms before anyone really starts to see the big picture.

Either way I’m kind of excited…about politics—which for a dude who is registered as “Apathetic”—seems like a pretty good thing.

MLK Day: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt. 3)

MLK Day: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt. 3)

MLK Day: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt.2)

MLK Day: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt.2)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Hunger Pains

Hey all ya’ll…it’s time for Captain Charisma to call upon you--my Faithful Readers--for some advice.

As is customary for me, I’m craving some good meat. But not any ole kind of meat, I’m hankerin’ for some really good barbecue. This is a fairly common urge for me, but lately it’s only been made worse as I’ve been watching the Travel Channel and Food Network like crazy.

I don’t know if it’s because I’m sick and tired of coming across the same re-runs of “Seinfeld” and “Everybody Loves Raymond” or what the deal is, but either way I’ve been drawn to the glut of barbecue-related shows on the aforementioned Travel Channel and Food Network. These shows have kept me drooling for weeks and constantly disappointed in whatever I’m actually eating for supper.

My favorite of all the shows, “BBQ Paradise,” on the Travel Channel has me mentally changing course in the planning of my forthcoming (read: if/when I can ever afford it) cross-country road-trip. Now, instead of planning my cross-country road-trip around baseball stadiums and landmarks, I’m planning it around places I can snag some of the finest BBQ in all the land.

In June the Phantom Gourmet will undoubtedly host their annual BBQ Beach Party and I’ll again attack it with a ravenous hunger that leaves most casual observers in a state of combined fear and disbelief.

In the meantime, I’m forced to settle for whatever I can get in the greater-Boston metro area. I’ve eaten at Red Bones in Somerville and have yet to be overly-impressed. It’s generally too greasy, too fatty and too expensive given the quality. I’ve eaten at FireFly’s--and it is GLORIOUS--but it’s also nowhere near me…luckily, I heavily endorsed it to be the official caterer for an upcoming event on-campus.

So this is where all ya’ll out there in BlogLand come in.

I implore you, my Faithful Readers, both in Boston and in the Midwest (and anywhere else) to hook a brotha up. If you know of any good BBQ--please, please let me know!! I shall be eternally grateful…and perhaps you’ll get a little cheap plug-action here in the chronicles of “Blank Stares and Blank Pages.”

MLK Day: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt. 1)

MLK DAY: Encounters of the Crazy-Kind (pt.1)

Saturday, January 17, 2009

What's on the Menu?!

I’ve received some emails from a few of my Faithful Readers who--upon reading my two previous entries about surviving in Grace’s absence--were interested to know what I’d actually been eating for the duration of the past two weeks.

Well, as I’m getting ready to head to the airport and meet Grace…I can now leave you with the official rundown of all my meals while Grace was away. Needless to say, if Grace is ever gone for an extended period of time, there’s a pretty good chance I won’t make it.


Monday January 5, 2009

Breakfast – McDonalds McGriddle w/ Hashbrowns and OJ
Lunch – None
Supper – McDonalds Double Quarter Pounder w/ Cheese Meal

Tuesday January 6, 2009

Breakfast – SlimFast and a Five-Hour Energy Shot (Extra Strength)
Lunch – Turkey Sammitch
Supper – Half a big bag of Lays w/ Chip Dip and a burnt Pepperoni Pizza

Wednesday January 7, 2009

Breakfast – Six waffles
Lunch – None
Supper – Burnt Mac-n-Cheese and Undercooked Tater Tots

Thursday January 8, 2009

Breakfast – SlimFast and a Rockstar
Lunch – Small Bag of Sun Chips and a Rockstar
Supper – McDonald’s Double Quarter Pounder w/ Cheese Meal

Friday January 9, 2009

Breakfast – Two donuts from Dunkin’ Donuts and half-gallon of milk
Lunch – Salami Sammitch
Supper – Two Bratwurst Burgers and Macaroni Salad

Saturday January 10, 2009

Breakfast – None
Lunch – Two Bratwurst Burgers and Macaroni Salad
Supper – 10 Buffalo Chicken Strips with Ranch Dressing

Sunday January 11, 2009

Breakfast – None
Lunch – None
Supper – Two Bratwursts and Macaroni Salad
Drunken Midnight Snack – Four Corn Dogs

Monday January 12, 2009

Breakfast – Four Waffles
Lunch – Two Gigantic Salads
Supper – Slightly Burnt Supreme Pizza

Tuesday January 13, 2009

Breakfast – None
Lunch – None
Supper – Ham Steak and a big salad

Wednesday January 14, 2009

Breakfast – Cap’n Crunch (½ box)
Lunch – Quizno’s Baja Chicken sub
Supper – Two Bratwursts and Macaroni Salad

Thursday January 15, 2009

Breakfast – Four Cinnamon Toast Waffles
Lunch – Quizno’s Turkey, Bacon & Guacamole sub
Supper – Three Hot Dogs

Friday January 16, 2009

Breakfast – Two donuts from Dunkin’ Donuts
Lunch – Quizno’s Italian sub
Supper – None
Drunken Attempt to Absorb Booze – McDonald’s Double Quarter Pounder w/ Cheese Meal and a Ranch Snack Wrap

Saturday January 17, 2009

Breakfast – None
Lunch – Italian sub from Stefani’s Pizzeria
Supper - SlimFast

Black(out) Friday

So last night Ryan and I had a few beers.

Somehow, those few beers eventually turned into a full-on two-man drunken wrecking crew wandering the streets of Cambridge. Unfortunately, neither one of us can remember much of it. Which is a shame, because I know we had a great time and the bits and pieces we do remember make it seem quite exciting.

Things that I know happened…

-We drank at my place while I cleaned in preparation for Grace’s arrival.
-We attempted to take a picture of my scrubbing the toilet. Unfortunately neither of the digital cameras in my apartment were working.
-We watched “Quantum Leap” for awhile.
-Darcy came over and we taught her how to play Guitar Hero (which is amusing consider the novice status we both still hold). We ate some wasabi peas.
-We took some shots of espresso-flavored vodka.
-We got on the T toward Porter Square.
-I nearly got into fight with teenagers…Ryan ensured that I did not.
-We walked forever and a day until we found Robin’s apartment which was serving as our landing spot for a party stock-piled with homemade beer!! (Ironically enough it was right by the infamous Conway Park that I’d first introduced to Jackie and Grace during our post-lease-signing death march back in late June!!)
-We entered the party. I peed and tried to compose myself as to not appear drunk off my ass in front of strangers at 7:30.
-Ryan and I drank a lot of beer and were completely anti-social.

…it’s about here that things get hazy. Unfortunately, that puts as at like eight in the PM or something. That leaves a whole lotta drunken time available for misguided antics in the streets/pubs/backyards of Cambridge.

Things that we think may have happened…

-We bailed on the party without saying goodbye because we were either going to puke on someone or get really loud and really obnoxious.
-We made the trek back to the Porter Square T…all loud and obnoxious, of course.
-I fell at some point. This is based on Ryan having a hazy memory of me taking a tumble combined with a dirty left side of my coat and a big bruise on my left hip discovered this morning.
-We stopped in a bar. I peed. Ryan bummed a cigarette. We were growing more loud and obnoxious.

…this is about the point we both reach full-on blackout mode.

Things that may or may not have happened…

-We may have enjoyed another beverage at the aforementioned watering hole, the jury is still out on that one?!
-Apparently I peed behind/in front of/near a gas station?!
-We rode the T back to Central Square. I can only hope that we did so in silence, because I don’t even want to begin trying to imagine what we would have been talking about—at high decibels I’m sure.
-We decided that we clearly needed more to drink.
-We got kicked out of “The Field” because I was too wobbly at the door?!
-We wandered across the street to the “Green Street Grill.” It was packed and we left.
-We made the trek—via the backstreets—toward the “People’s Republik.”
-I decided I needed to eat/pass out/die and headed home.
-I stopped at McDonald’s and purchased $8.38 worth of fast-food. (This one has been confirmed by my online bank statement)

…this is when my body went into default “get home and pass out” mode.

Things that, unfortunately, also happened…

-At two in the AM I woke up on my couch, in my jacket and boots.
-I woke up to my cell-phone ringing. I answered it and it was some dude speaking Spanish at a very fast-rate; far too fast for two in the morning when you’re passed out on your couch. I assumed it was Ryan, because I vaguely recall us drunkenly speaking mangled Spanish earlier in the evening. As such, I screamed obscenities into the phone until the dude talking went silent. “Ryan?!” I asked. There was a long pause and then “…no?!” I hung up. (I Googled the number this morning, turns out it was some Mexican Telemarketing Company.)
-I looked around to see the TV was on and blaring. I had passed out watching the Home Shopping Network?!
-I fumbled around trying to remove my contacts. In the process I lost the left one and nearly plucked out my entire eyeball removing the right one.
-I went to my room to pass out in a bed and was upset with the temperature. As such, I dug around in my closet for a space heater and turned that bad-boy on and passed out.

Things that I’m glad happened…

-I checked my phone this morning and realized that I’d been passed out in my apartment by like 10:30pm. I also realized that I hadn’t drunkenly texted or called anyone, always less embarrassing that way.
-I checked online and found I hadn’t drunkenly Facebooked anyone or blogged, also less embarrassing that way.
-I was leaving for work and noticed a gigantic, sloppily done snow angel in front of my apartment. I giggled and went to work.

The moral of the story: If you’re going out drinking with Ryan Gray and neither of you has eaten anything substantial—always bring a babysitter and/or a camera to help piece the evening back together the next morning.

Friday, January 16, 2009

25 Random Things

25 Random Things

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Joys of My Job

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Worst Commute...EVER!! (Part Two)

So after all the bullshit I went through on the way to the grocery store, some part of me should have anticipated that things wouldn’t get any better once I actually got to the grocery store.

Let’s do this…

So there I am grabbing some syrup and some dishwashing goo and that’s when my addiction to impulse purchases takes over. Suddenly I’m in the cleaning supplies aisle and my OCD bathroom cleanliness thing rears its ugly head again and I spend nearly ten minutes browsing all of the various cleaners and air-fresheners. I snag a few air-fresheners--so the apartment doesn’t smell like dude when Grace gets back--and some toilet cleaner.

Then I realize that if I’m buying more syrup I should get some waffles too. So I’ve got two air-fresheners, a bottle of toilet bowl cleaner, some syrup, two boxes of waffles (two for $4--can‘t pass that up!!), some dishwashing goo and needless to say, my hands are a wee-bit full. So I stick the syrup and the toilet bowl bowl cleaner in my back pockets and head toward the cereal aisle, because I need some more Cap’n Crunch.

In the cereal aisle, some dude who is loading up the shelves with new boxes of Frosted Flakes sees me with stuff in my pocket and flips out. He starts yelling at me to stop and stay where I’m at. A command which I find amusing since I’m not moving anywhere, in fact I’m in the process of grabbing a box of Cap’n Crunch and trying to balance my boxes of waffles, dishwashing goo and air-fresheners at the same time. Where this dude thought I was going I don’t know.

He promptly accuses me of shoplifting. I explain to him that my arms--as is pretty freakin’ obvious--are full and I’m not stealing a darn thing. I’m just bringing them to the front of the store. He isn’t buying it. He starts talking about calling the cops and I’m trying to figure out of this dude is for real or if I’m on an episode of Punk’d. I take a gander around the cereal aisle and see no cameras and assume that this dude is legitimately bat-shit crazy. He says he’s going to get the manager and I tell him, that he can do whatever he wants, but I’m done shopping now and I’m going to go pay for my stuff and finally go home.

So Frosted Flakes guy follows me all the way to the front of the store and watches me like a hawk the entire time I’m up there and goes out of his way to tell every other Shaw’s employee that he caught me trying to shoplift. I tried to explain myself to the gal running the register, but she just gave me a blank “uh-huh, whatever dude” kind of look and I figured I’d be better off shutting my mouth and just leaving the store. So I did, with Frosted Flakes guy following me all the way out…you know, because I’m a threat.

I got outside and started the final leg of my walk home thinking that this can’t actually be happening. This is just too much crazy stuff in a very small timeframe. This doesn’t happen.

Then I remembered that just before I left work I picked up a tails-up penny. Dropped it. Picked it up, tails-up, a second time. Tried to flip it, dropped it again and this time it was heads-up…so I picked it up and thought nothing of it.

Now, I don’t normally believe in bad-luck. In fact, I have a distinct philosophy on luck that states: “There are only two kinds of luck. Good luck and potluck.” So I wasn’t worried about the “bad luck” that this tails-up penny might have unleashed upon me.

Just then I was getting close to my place. For anyone who has never been to my place, let me lay it out a little bit. You have to go down a small alley-way to get to my door. They have half the alley-way filled with snow and the other half is all cleared for us to walk through. Well, for whatever reason someone has pushed one of our dumpsters all the way to the end of the alley-way, blocking the cleared-out part. So I tried to step around and promptly felt my foot sink into snow.

All the way up to my knee.

Yep, snow all up in my shoe and up my pants, all the way to the freakin’ knee!!

So I sorta leap out of the snow and around the dumpster and try to stomp as much snow out of my pants and off my leg as possible. I get to the front door head inside and lock the door behind me.

I feel that I’ve earned the right to enjoy a few ice-cold Coors Lights this evening. Yeah, yeah it’s happy-hour time in my living room…unless this place randomly burns to the ground or implodes, as would be my luck today.

Here’s to hoping I survive the night.

Worst Commute…EVER!! (Part One)

So I’ve blogged before about how much I love my commute, but today things went horrendously awry. We’re not talking about “oh no, I stepped in a puddle” awry…we’re talking about “you can’t make shit this up, belongs in a movie” awry.

Let’s begin…

So I stayed on campus until nearly seven finishing up some work and then headed to the grocery store in search of some dishwashing goo and some syrup. On the way to the grocery I came up to a cross walk as the light was turning green and the “don’t walk” flashing-hand was doing it’s non-flashy thing which--last time I checked--means keep your ass on the sidewalk.

That’s when it happened.

Everyone imagines what they’d do in one of those movie-style hero situations, well I had my chance. Some gal was chit-chatting on her cellphone paying no attention as she sauntered through the crosswalk giggling into her phone and talking about what I can only assume was some MTV reality show. I look off to the left and see some dude in his car with the dome light on fumbling for something in the passenger seat and not paying any attention to the chick on the phone.

So I grab her and pull her up onto the sidewalk. The dude in the car looks up at the last second and sorta swerves around and then barrels off peddle-to-the-metal style. Meanwhile, the chick slugs me in the chest and yells at me to get off of her. Apparently she’d misinterpreted my potentially life-saving assistance as a would-be kidnapping, mugging and/or assault.

The worst-part is that no one was there. Campus is pretty dead this time of year, especially around seven in the ole PM. So it’s me and this chick who thinks I’m going for some boob-groppage or something and no one to bask in the awesomeness of my quasi-heroism. You know, in the movies, there’s always like a thousand people and some newspaper photographers hanging around.

Anyway, I tried to explain that a car was coming at her, but she wasn’t having it. So instead of a ‘thank you’ I received a much less polite ‘fuck off, asshole.’ Now I’m not going to lie, but I was a little disgruntled with this reaction. In the movies when you save someone from getting mowed down a car, they tend to be quite gracious. Instead I get some chick who’s all-kinds of loony-toons and assumes she’s been accosted. Now, no offense to this bitchy nerdy chick, but let’s be honest if I’m going to go out of my way to assault someone in public, it’s going to be someone who looks a lot more like Jennifer Aniston and a lot less like some chick trying out for “Rock of Love.”

On a related-note, it’s also probably going to be someone who understands what the don’t walk sign means…and understands the “look both ways” concept.

If only it had ended there. But alas, it did not.

As I’m wandering down the street to the grocery store, I’m sort of staring off into space. You know, mentally processing all of the craziness that just transpired when suddenly I hear some chick screaming… “what’s your problem you fucking pervert?!”

Needless to say this sorta jumps me back into reality and I look up to see some chick in her bra screaming out her window. Apparently she saw me staring off into space and assumed I was peeping in her window as she changed. She then closed the blinds--something one would think she should have done earlier, like perhaps pre-nudity--and I took a second to see just how many people had witnessed me being called out as a pervert on a public street.

Six. Six people were there to witness this transgression.

Not a damned soul to see me pull some chick out of harm’s way, but I’ve got a solid half-dozen people gawking at me and assuming I’m some sort of level-three sex offender. Super, abso-f’n-lutely super!!

Finally I made my way to the grocery store, just wanting to get my stuff and go home to bring an end to the ridiculousness of this entire journey.

If only that were actually the end.

(End…Part I)

Monday, January 12, 2009

My Kryptonite

A few weeks back, I ran smack-dab into my Kryptonite. Unlike Superman, my Kryptonite wasn’t delivered via the hands of a bald villain. No, no…the bearer of my Kryptonite was far more sinister.

It turns out I’m a sucker for free samples and cute gals. So understandably when the two are combined I’m pretty much wasting my time attempting to fight off any of their wayward efforts to sell me something. Well this exact scenario reared it’s cute lil head while I was home for Christmas Break.

My brother, G-Doggy and I were wandering through the mall in picturesque Mankato (pronounced: Man-Kay-Toe for all you coasters) looking to finish up our Christmas shopping. We were on our way out of the mall when some foxy little chicky-babe came walking up to us with a platter and simply said the magic words, free sample?!

I of course pounced and followed her to her little booth, confused as to why she hadn’t given us any of the samples from the platter. She set the platter down and I realized it just contained little pieces of cardboard with lotions on them. This was not something edible, I’d been duped!

I frantically looked around her booth and realized that we’d just been suckered in by those people who try to sell hand lotions and manicure kits from the Dead Sea.

G-Doggy was not happy.

I was equally unpleased, but I figured we’d give her a few seconds and then blow her off and make a b-line for the exit and some Taco John’s. What I didn’t realize was that she was from Israel and possessed a fairly thick accent which made it almost completely impossible to understand a word she was saying. And, as such, made it very hard to choose the right time to make our exit.

Plus, before I could even begin to decipher what she was saying, she’d already grabbed my left hand and was buffing the crap out of my middle finger with some weird block thing. She was quite nice in the way she repeatedly insulted the health and overall appearance of both G-Doggy’s and my fingernails. G-Doggy does construction and his fingers are pretty mangled. I work in a library and mine are…um…well, I type hard so clearly they’re a little banged up.

Anyway, Cutie McAccent kept on rambling inaudibly and buffing my finger when suddenly G-Doggy bailed to go answer his phone. This left me there trying to make small-talk. I learned that she grew up in a small town, much like myself. I learned that she was only working at this booth to pay for medical school. I think she told me that she enjoyed “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman,” but I can’t really fathom how that would have been relevant.

So I shoot a look at G-Doggy who is hanging up his phone and I can’t help but think that we’ve got our out! All he has to do is come back and say there is some kind of emergency or we need to go meet someone or something.

…but no.

Instead G-Doggy comes back and stands there waiting for her to finish her spiel. The next twenty minutes or so are largely a blur, but I know that G-Doggy also got his nail buffed and shined up, we gave our input on various scented lotions and listened to her final hard push to get us to purchase a couple of these nail kits.

Once she finally stopped talking--while waiting for us to pull out some credit cards--we knew it was our only chance and we politely declined and made a break for it.

My left middle fingernail is still super shiny, which makes me a little nervous. The shiny nail, however, also serves as a constant reminder that I need to be more powerful when encountered by the foxy lady/free sample combo!!

Consider this a warning to all of you, my Faithful Readers, cute gals carrying platters that may or may not contain food can strike at any time.

Ted Danson -- What Happened Dude?!

So there I was sitting on my couch flipping through the channels and struggling to find anything to watch. Like seriously, you know it’s bad when you’re--by choice--watching the junior high years of “Saved by the Bell.” You know…the ones with Hayley Mills as a history teacher. Yeah, that’s fine casting right there.

Once “Saved by the Bell” ended and I wisely flipped the station prior to watching another episode, I was without anything to watch yet again. There really is nothing more frustrating when you have 75 channels and not a doggone one of them is playing anything worth more than a ten-second commitment before surfing onto the next number on the dial.

And then it appeared. The familiar piano intro. The canned laughter in the opening scene. The unmistakable front façade. That’s right folks, it was “Cheers!!”

I’ve yet to encounter anyone who doesn’t like “Cheers” and to be perfectly honest, I don’t think I ever want to. The show is just too darn enjoyable. One of the major reasons is the great cast, headed by the fun-loving Ted Danson.

When I was a kid I remember thinking that I wanted Ted Danson (or at least ‘Sam Malone’) to be my uncle. The dude was just super cool. He was an ex-baseball player, he was a bartender, he was funny and all the ladies loved him (or at least he thought so). It doesn’t get any better than that, does it?!

After watching a great episode--the one where Woody and Sam get tricked into kissing each other--I started to wonder what Ted Danson was up to nowadays. As such, I turned to my old friend Google, typed in ’Ted Danson’ and hit enter…and then I promptly poo’d my pants.

I don’t know what the last decade or so has done to him, but he looks scary as all hell. The last I recall he was starting up a new show called “Becker” where he looked like Ted Danson. Apparently now he’s on a show called “Damages” and moonlights as a Malcolm McDowell impersonator crossed with Hellboy (minus the bright redness of course).

Needless to say I now desire to be less like Ted Danson…granted, I’d still be Sam Malone in a heartbeat!!

Um…Movie Reviews?!

Now perhaps I’ve had too many beers or maybe ‘Terminator 3’ is simply an awful movie. Either way I’m having a very, very hard time understanding the following…

a) Why would Claire Daines be hooking up with the dude playing her husband, because I’m clearly way cooler!!

b) Why would Claire Danes hook up with the dude playing John Conner, because let’s be honest here--I’m clearly way cooler.

c) Why would this Terminator Chick be so worried about killing John Conner, clearly I’m way cooler and she could be hooking up with me instead!!

d) This Terminator Chick is pretty hot…I honestly cannot imagine a better way to die!!!

…and that my Faithful Readers, is my review of “Terminator 3!!”

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Dane Cook Sucks…

Okay, I’m not gonna lie. I might be a wee-bit intoxicated here on a Sunday evening, but I do know that Dane Cook makes me want to kill anyone who even finds him remotely funny.

I’m sitting here--roughly ten beers in--and this dude cannot make a single joke that gets me giggling. To be perfectly honest I’m largely offended and/or disappointed by just about everything that comes out of this schmuck’s mouth.

Nothing he says makes me laugh. None of his awkward full-body seizure movements make me laugh. None of his random uses of the good ole F-bomb make me laugh.

Yet for some reason completely unknown to me this dude right here, this D-Bag is the top comedian in the freakin’ country right now.

Let’s go ahead and color me not happy!!

This dude blows!!

Simple Pleasures: a New Playlist

As I’ve mentioned previously, I love my iPod. Without my iPod my commute while living in Southie would have been awful. Unfortunately, I don’t use it nearly as much now that my commute has been reduced to a ten minute Ric Flair-style strut.

Well Faithful Readers, what happens when you use something less? Yep, that’s right…you appreciate it less.

It’s just like every dude who got a Super Nintendo back in the day and thought it was the coolest thing ever…until they got a Playstation and suddenly they started playing their SNES less and less, until eventually it disappeared for $10 at a garage sale and the aforementioned dudes never noticed.

I’ll admit, as much as I love my iPod, I’ve clearly been appreciating it less than it deserves as of late.

That all changed today.

See, at work my computer got upgraded from Windows XP to Vista and as a result I had to download new versions of several programs that wouldn’t transfer between XP and Vista. One of those programs was iTunes, which was--at first--a HUGE pain in the ass. I mean seriously, who wants to have to reinstall all of their music files?! Not this guy, that’s for darn sure!

Then I went to charge my iPod and found out that since I’d downloaded a new version of iTunes, I had to clear my iPod to sync it up with the new iTunes library (which technically was the same library as before). I was pretty pissed, but had no choice, so I went ahead and cleared my iPod playlist.

It was then that I got this crazy rush!! Suddenly, I was free to create a new playlist from scratch. I hadn’t done that since I first got the iPod nearly two and a half years ago. Sure I’d added and removed songs here and there in that time, but for the most part the bulk of the playlist hadn’t really changed much.

So there I sat for three hours, going through the nearly 6,500 songs on my computer, picking each song one-by-one to assemble a brand-new compilation. This new assemblage of songs--much like my full iTunes list--covers every genre and contains about as much awesomeness as one gigabyte of memory can handle.

With my new tunes my walk home took on a brand new Gene Kelly-like form and I couldn’t help but get my sing and dance hum and head-bop on!!

It was just wonderful; my brand-new playlist was like Christmas morning in my ears!! I had no idea what was coming next and it was all songs I hadn’t heard every day for past two years or so.

Without a doubt for anyone who has fallen into a music rut, I totally recommend you scrap your list and start from scratch. It’s a glorious experience!

Here’s to you, Brand New Playlist!!!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Reversal of Fortune: Meat

So I’ve realized in the past few days that things as seemingly simple as Mac‘n’Cheese figure to be far too daunting for a man possessing my cooking “talents.” As such I decided tonight to go in a different route.

The ever-enchanting Elissa Derby informed me that she’d stumbled across a non-veggie form of corn dog at the grocery store and I determined that I had no choice but to check it out. Much to my delight, I found a box of chicken corn dogs resting peacefully in the frozen foods section. Granted, it’s not the usual pork, beef, chicken, raccoon combo that most hot dogs are, but I figured ‘what the heck, it’s a freakin’ corn dog.’

Upon gathering my nitrate-cicles it hit me like a left-hook from Rocky…I can cook meat!! Well, let’s not get as crazy as to use the word “cook,” but let’s go ahead and say that I can appropriately warm up meat to the point that it can be consumed with little to no fear of death and/or contamination. To be perfectly honest, I am an INCREDIBLE cook when I have a grill…just ask Grace…I can put flame to meat like nobody’s business. As such, I figured, what the hey…let’s give it a go on the ole stove top.

So I went ahead and--in addition to my chicken corn dogs--purchased bratwurst burgers, bratwurst, buffalo chicken strips, hot dogs, some refried beans, some salad stuff (I do enjoy a good salad) and an onion. So now I’m going to go ahead and rock the meat, because it’s one of the few things that I can actually cook.

Now, granted I’m not Mike Kunkel or Travis Morfitt when it comes to abilities with the dead animal…but I can make it taste all-kinds of edible; apparently far more edible than I can make a boxed pasta and cheese meal taste?!

Here’s to hoping this reduces the odds that I perish prior to Grace’s return…

Thursday, January 08, 2009

I’m Lovin’ It?!

So I wandered into McDonald’s tonight…in an attempt to avoid “cooking” for myself again. Granted, I’m not proud of it, because come on…I don’t want to eat that much Mickey D’s because it will undoubtedly lead to my untimely demise at the hands of a Double-Quarter Pounder…with cheese, of course.

Anyway, let’s bring this story back to the point.

I walk in and I’m taking a gander at the menu board…which sorta makes me sad because let’s be honest the McDonald’s menu hasn’t really changed at any point in the last couple of decades or so…and then I hear it, off to my left.

There’s a kid yelling at his mom. The dude is like six-years old--at most--and he’s not yelling the way six-year olds yell. No, no…this little fricker blurted out the following phrases:

“Fuck you, I want a Big Mac…”

“…I don’t give a shit!! Buy it!”

“I hate you…you stupid bitch!”

Yep, that all came out of the mouth of a six-year old (at most)…in a McDonald’s…in Cambridge, Massachusetts…in the year 2009.

I’m not going to lie, I was under the impression that children were supposed to respect their elders, but apparently this little punk-ass and his mother see things otherwise. Now I don’t know what her deal was. Logic would say that she was either the most patient woman on the face of the earth (next to Grace, that is) or she is the worst-kind of parent…spineless.

Upon witnessing this little tiff I decided I was no longer in the mood for a greasy burger and I left…

…I don’t think I want to have kids for a long, long time. I feel like their rambunctious attitudes mixed with my propensity for random acts of borderline psychotic violence probably wouldn’t mesh so well.

Long-story-short…kids these days, they all be crazy!

Coolest Thing…EVER!!

For those of you who’ve been constant readers of my inconsistent postings over the last year or so, you may or may not have read about my anti-Burger King decry.

See here’s what went down; before we moved to Cambridge (and unnervingly close to a McDonalds) we lived deep in the heart of Southie. During my daily commute to and from the subway, I’d wander past Burger King.

Unfortunately, my will-power when it comes to fast-food is roughly the same as Joan Rivers’ will-power when it comes to plastic surgery. So I ate a lot of…wait…wait…pump the brakes…did I really just make a Joan Rivers joke?! Damn, I am getting old and/or significantly less funny.


Anyway…needless to say I ate a TON of Burger King in our time there and for good reason, BK kicks out some pretty good crappy food. What I didn’t really think about was the unfortunate side-effect of scarfing down triple Stackers and double Whoppers multiple times a week. I got a lil bit chunky. So much so that I decided I was done with the stuff, no matter how much it tempted me.

As one might expect within one short month I’d already dropped four pounds. I can safely say that it was just because I quit eating BK, I mean come on…there’s no way I was working out more. That’s just ludicrous.

By July—three months after I’d sworn off the King and all of his delectables—I’d already dropped over fifteen pounds. Granted at this point I was also in the midst of a gym-attendance revival and in the middle of softball season where I have a tendency to spend one night a week sprinting all over a softball field for no good reason.

Anyway, back to the point of this little ditty. I’m technically anti-Burger King, but I gotta be honest, they are doing everything in their power to win me back. First it was the Flame body spray, something that I fully intend to get my hands on and blog about in the future.

The kicker, however, came today when I discovered (thanks to the folks at ”A Hamburger Today”) that Burger King is now offering a promotion for their “Angry Whopper” that encourages people to de-friend their Facebook friends for a free Whopper!!

The marketing campaign, entitled ”Whopper Sacrifice” is abso-f’n-lutely brilliant. Who among us wouldn’t ditch ten Facebook friends for a free Whopper?!

Heck, I can think of like twenty profiles that belong to characters from “How I Met Your Mother” that I’d axe in a heartbeat just for some of that sweet, sweet meaty goodness that only the King can provide.

Uh…but I won’t, because I’m anti-Burger King…perhaps all ya’ll might want to check it out.

When I Grow Up…

Last night, I was channel surfing because there was nothing on and I was doing my best not to puke after cooking what I can only assume was the world’s first batch of crunchy Mac‘n’Cheese. Somehow I stumbled across the Travel Channel and what was probably the most inspiring show I’ve ever seen…“Man vs. Food.”

The premise of the show is absolutely glorious. This dude travels around the country and eats.

That’s it.

He gets paid to go from city-to-city and eat at all the coolest spots for gluttons. That’s right, it’s not one of those shows that has a dude telling you where to snag the best crème brûlée on the eastern seaboard or one of those shows where a dude has to eat pickled wasps and sheep innards (or crunchy Mac’n’Cheese).

No, no…this show is all about traveling around and eating burgers, pizzas and subs of all shapes and sizes. Absolutely glorious!! In addition to just wandering around and checking out the local cuisine the dude also gets to try out the local eating challenges. Last night I watched him try to eat an eleven-pound pizza covered in five kinds of meat!! Naturally he failed, but he made a valiant effort.

And get this, next week’s episode has him coming to Boston!!

Without a doubt, this is the job I want when I grow up. I’ve got no doubt that dude is going to have to retire soon after an unfortunate, yet completely unavoidable double-bypass surgery…and that’s when the doors swing open for this library-dude to step up and become the Man who gets paid and gets famous for going head-to-head with Food on a weekly basis.

…yeah, I think I can handle that!!

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Don't Call it a Comeback...

Okay, I get that she’s mid-comeback and all…but I’ve gotta say something about my ex…

Britney, what the F?!

I just saw the video for "Womanizer." This was also the first time I’d heard the song and I gotta be honest here Brit-Brit…but are you kidding me? THIS is your comeback?!

The song was just you uttering the phrase “…you’re a womanizer, womanizer, womanizer, womanizer” over and over and over again. Lather, rinse, repeat. The video was just a bunch of vignettes of you giving some dude a lap dance in different latex outfits interspersed with shots of you all naked for no good reason.

Now I could get into the logic that it makes no sense for a woman to “get back” at a womanizer by giving him a lap dance, because let’s be honest--as evidenced by yesterday’s blog--there are thousands of dudes who would pay good money for a lap dance, let alone one from post-traumatic breakdown Britney Spears.

But I’m not going to attack the logic of the video. I could get into the horrendous lyrics and how the song sounded just like every other song she’s released since her second album dropped back at the turn of the century. But I’m not going to attack her singing.

No, no what I am going to attack is that this is being deemed her comeback.

We’ve all been channel surfing and stopped on “Access Hollywood” or “Extra” or whatever those shows are that flash Jennifer Aniston just enough to stop any dude flipping through the channels in search of a “Family Guy” rerun.

We’ve all been in that situation where you get sucked in and suddenly you’ve listened to nearly half an hour of some K-list celebrity like Mario Lopez or Mark McGrath rambling on about the “rough” lives of celebrities. Well they got me to buy into the whole comeback thing for Britney.

Call me crazy, but a comeback means that you’re really back in a big way. It means you’ve changed as a performer and you’re coming back with something new and fresh to offer. It means that you’re taking your career to a different phase.

Apparently for Britney Spears the word comeback simply means that she dropped her baby weight, let her hair grow out and hit the gym to tone up. So now she looks all hot again, instead of like some kind of mangled roadside mess like she did in the waning months of her marriage, divorce, breakdown, recovery, breakdown, etc….

Britney, we broke up for a good reason and I told you that we could talk about getting back together when you got yourself straightened out and focused on your career…all you’ve done is get skinny and continue turning out the same machine-altered crap that’s going to turn into every sorority chick’s ringtone and will undoubtedly be the cause of many a mid-dance floor dry-hump session at every club in every city for the next six months.

Don’t call it a comeback…you’ve been turning out this crap for years!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Survivor: Cambridge

So as it turns out I’m darn near invincible. I’ve proven that I can survive blizzards, food poisoning, ice storms, sleep deprivation, car wrecks and just about anything else you can toss my way. Yet, the next two weeks will prove to be a real test of my fortitude. That’s right folks…‘tis that time of year once more. Grace is in South Dakota and I’m in Boston all alone, left to fend for myself.

Now I don’t want to say that I can’t cook, because that’d be disrespecting the years of practice I’ve put into perfecting the arts of “corndoggeration” and “bowl of cerealism,” however, given today’s disappointment at Star Market I can’t help but be a bit beleaguered about my prospects for the next two weeks.

That’s right folks they were all out of corn dogs!!!

This is the same thing that happened to me when we were living in Southie as well. For whatever reason the Southie Stop-n-Shop decided to stop carrying corn dogs, without sending out any sort of email, flyer or voicemail to all of the faithful fans in the greater Southie region. Well, now it’s happened again here in Cambridge. Without warning all of the corn dogs were gone and the closest replacement was something called a “veggie corn dog.” The mere thought of which made me hurl in my mouth a little bit.

So what’s a dude to do when his original grocery plans have suddenly gone awry?!

Beats the heck outta me. I did what I usually end up doing in that type of situation, I let my impulse purchase-addiction take over.

As a result, I went from spending ten minutes at the grocery store to spending nearly an hour and a half just wandering back and forth trying to figure out what would be the best purchases. I meandered up and down the frozen foods aisle like two-hundred and thirteen times. I sauntered back and forth in front of the deli meats long enough that the butcher dude thought I was plotting out an “Ocean’s 11”-inspired caper. It was then that I realized how long I’d been in the grocery store and just started grabbing random, non-corndoggian things.

My final bounty consisted of the following: big can of beef stew, tortilla chips, wavy Lays chips, frozen waffles, bag of shredded cheese, two frozen chimichangas, two very gross frozen pizzas, one bag of frozen pasta, one jar of Ragu pasta sauce, some crappy corn tortillas, one package turkey deli meat, one package hard salami, a bag of tater tots, two cans of chicken to make chicken salad, Mac-n-Cheese and two loaves of buy-one, get-one free Italian bread.

This all led to my getting home and realizing that none of it looked any good. I wanted Chinese food, but I don’t know where there’s any good Chinese food near my place. So then I realized I wanted some tacos or maybe some fried chicken, but I wasn’t in any sort of mood to actually leave my house. So I figured I’d just give it a go with some of the food I’d just purchased.

In the end, I wound up making some crappy little wraps from the awful corn tortillas and some turkey. Then I made the pepperoni pizza and as it turns out it was pretty much awful as well. So now here I sit with a wee-bit of a tummy ache thinking that the odds of my survival in the next two weeks without corndogs and/or eating-out everyday are pretty much nil.

Here’s to hoping I can find a way to survive off of some combination of frozen tater tots, dirt-cheap chimichangas and a big ole can of beef stew.

Confessions: Strip Clubs

Strip clubs suck donkey-balls.

Yep, I said it. Someone had to.

Now don’t get me wrong, this isn’t one of those awkward “coming out of the closet via blog” posts. No, no…I won’t be coming out of the closet until Brett Favre decides to formally announce he’s done the same, at which point I shall immediately follow suit.

This also isn’t one of those lame attempts to impress the female readers of my blog by making myself sound like a sensitive, enlightened fellow. I enjoy the splendor of a naked chicky-babe as much as the next dude, I just think strip clubs are outlandishly overrated.

In the interest of full disclosure, I should let all ya’ll know that I’ve by no means scoured the ends of the earth in search of naked dancing women. In fact, I can safely say that all of my strip club experiences could be counted on one hand. So clearly I don’t have the greatest cache of experiences to use as reference material here, but it’s my blog and I’ll blog if I want to.

First and foremost I’ve got to admit that the whole ‘paying to see naked chicks dance’ thing isn’t exactly my idea of a good time, for multiple reasons.

1) I’m Dutch. Lord knows I don’t want to part with my money.
2) If I’m going to overpay for a generally disappointing show, I’ll just go to any post-“High Fidelity” John Cusack movie.
3) I kinda know what naked ladies look like at this point in life.

Secondly, in my experiences I’ve seen a total of one…count’em ONE…“dancer” at these places that I would deem attractive. Maybe I’m just a picky guy, who knows, but personally c-section scars and a nice case of Meth-mouth aren’t real big turn-ons.

Thirdly, the whole thing is really sad and depressing. Here’s a bunch of gals who are up on stage flopping around for crusty one dollar bills from a bunch of horny old men blowing their 401Ks and drunk frat boys pissing away their trust-funds. Half of them appear to be drunk or high. The other half look like lifeless robots going through the motions.

I realize there are plenty of good reasons for ladies to be stripping, I’m not chastising them here at all; I am merely making my point that I think strip clubs suck.

Long story short: it’s expensive, it’s lame, and it’s depressing.

So now, I shall sit back and see what type of response this warrants from the vast majority of my male readership.

January Slump Returns

Well, I think all ya’ll know what time of year it is. It’s the early part of January and as has often been the case, I’m in a bit of a writing malaise. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t have stuff to write or want to write, but this time of year…for whatever reason…I tend to open up a Word document, fill it with crap and then delete it all far more often than I get around to hitting the publish button on my bloggity-blog.

In my head, I’ve written about 2,000 great blogs in the last two and a half weeks. I’ve chronicled my Midwest Misadventures, I’ve written many a tale of drunken revelry, I’ve scribed long diatribes on topics of all shapes and sizes, I’ve pounded out enough crucial information to ruin any hope of a political career for anyone named Kunkel.

What I haven’t done is actually put pen-to-paper (or is it finger-to-key?!) for any of those tales.

I’ve yet to figure out why this happens every year. Perhaps it is because of all the traveling and because I’m so busy at home? Perhaps it’s because at home I have limited access to the internet and a working computer? Perhaps it’s simply because when I get done with Christmas break I have a ton of work waiting for me? Who knows?!

What I do know is that it happens every January and it sucks.

Last year it was worse than usual as it turned out to be a case of hardcore writer’s block that stuck around until October when I spent some time talking about blogging with one of my personal favorite bloggers, Mr. Seth Johnson. For whatever reason when I returned to Boston I was completely energized to write again and apparently others were energized to read my crap…talk about a win-win.

In an effort to counteract my usual January drop-off, I’ve decided that I’m not going to delete any of the dumb, short, pointless, rambling, boring, lame, embarrassing, borderline offensive things that I hammer out this time of year. Rather, I’m just going to post them. I’m also setting numerous writing goals to ensure that I publish something new at least once every two days (in theory)…gotta keep the reading public happy…assuming there are any of you left after my Christmas break drop-off?!