Archive for March, 2015

Garden Variety

March 29, 2015

If you’re starting your own business, at what point do you eschew the family name for something a little more appealing? These guys couldn’t tell you. Seriously. Bland Landscaping. That’s like opening a car lot if your name is Lemon – or a butcher shop if your name is Unsanitary.



March 26, 2015

I’ve always been a bit miffed at Hooters. Not that lovely women in skimpy outfits don’t hold their attraction for me, but what I’ve always found more than a wee bit disingenuous is the party line from Hooters brass that the name isn’t sexual or misogynistic in any way. “Hooters? It’s our owl mascot! I mean, look at the sign!’

And sure enough. There is an owl on the Hooters sign. But be fair, huh? When was the last time you used the term “hooter” to describe anything feathered and flighty rather than something on someone feathered and flighty. Bottom line – Hooters ain’t fooling anyone.

That’s why I’ve always wanted to open up my own chain of hot dog diners called Wieners & Buns. I’d staff it with young, good-looking guys who wear tight T-shirts and even tighter shorts with a big ol’ suggestive hot dog logo on the front. Then when the same sexist lamebrains who decry that Hooters refers to nothing more than a Woodsy wannabe get all hot under the collar, I could counter with a deadpan, “Hey, Wieners & Buns refers to the hot dogs we sell. Get your mind out of the gutter.”

I guess the only things stopping me from going through with this sardonic plan are my lack of capital, my raging vegetarian tendencies and the fact that I would never stoop to the same sophomoric level as the dillweeds at Hooters.

Pass the mustard.


March 24, 2015

Five Hipster Books

To Kale a Mockingbird

From Here to Urban Outfitters

A Beard Grows In Brooklyn

Their Eyes Were Watching Wes Anderson

The Artisanal Grapes of Wrath


Five Euphemisms For Pregnancy

In the family way

Up the duff

Go Go Gadget Zygote!

Cribbin’ the ute

Pulling a Duggar


Five Reasons to Hate Winnie the Pooh

He’s not a real bear

He got his stupid head stuck in a honey jar

He hunted the heffalump to extinction

He smells like wet stuffing

He poohs in the woods


Five More Ways To Leave Your Lover

Leave on a ferry, Gary.

Grab an axe and decapitate, Nate.

Shove her bloody face in, Jason.

Dose her with strychnine, er –uh, Rick … stein.

Get your gun and shart shootin’, Putin.


Five Retroactove Product Placements in Movies

“Well I got her number. How do you like them Snapples?”

“They call me Mister Pibbs!”

“Forget it, Jake, it’s Chinet.”

“As god is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again – thanks to Stouffer’s Lean Cuisine!”

“A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some BUSH’s Baked Beans and a nice Franzia, the wine in a box.”


Tart Attack

March 22, 2015

I’ve decided how I will die.

No, no, no – don’t get me wrong. I’m not being morbid. I have no intention of passing any time soon. Trust me on that. When my time comes I will fight the grim reaper with every ounce of strength, grit and deceit I can muster. But I have seen the future of my mortality and it has a name.

It’s the Pop Tart Stuffed Doughnut.

Yep. A bakery in San Francisco has taken all the delicious goodness found in Kellogg’s breakfast pastry and shoved it, like a dessert turducken, into the cavity of a yummy doughnut. Sound amazing? Of course it does.

Now, I’m not in the City by the Bay and I have no plans of visiting. I don’t even eat desserts anymore. Yet I know that as sure as the sun will rise that I will – one day – somehow be in the position to  try one of these so-called Big Poppa Tarts and I will seize the opportunity because it is the most incredible thing I have ever heard of and I will put it into my mouth and savor the sweet, delectable goodness of this hybrid confection and then my heart will asplode and my brain will seize up and I will die because humans are not made to withstand such utter decadence delivered in the form of a high-caloric sweetbomb.

Of course, armed with this prescience, I could avoid the pitfalls of a patisserie-plagued demise and steer clear of the Pop Tart doughnut. But no. The foreknowledge of my doom places me on a perfect path that leads me inexorably toward this sinful streudelkin in a way that comforts me with its surety. I live, I breathe, I exist in contentment, knowing my perverted pudding oblivion awaits.

So fare-ye-well, Pop Tart Stuffed Doughnut. We shall meet one day. Yes, we shall.

And it will be glorious.

poptart + doughnuts = reaper

Come to me , my ambrosial amor and let me embrace my mortality.

Sign Angerage

March 19, 2015

I realize I’m about forty years too late in my outrage but I think the guy who is ostensibly the singer of the song Signs (originally by Five Man Electrical Band, later remade by Tesla) is a completely and total dick. Yes, I know the tune was released in 1971 when it was a counter-culture anthem and the main character is supposedly a rebel who stands up to “The Man” in all his forms but the hippie haranguer is, at best, a fraud, a trespasser and a thief. I mean, he applies for a job under false pretenses, he stands on a guy’s property and yells at him and he steals the offerings from a collection plate in church. What a d-bag! I guess I’d be really upset if I didn’t imagine the jerk died horribly when he ignored the “No Skating – Thin Ice” sign one late winter because he felt that Mother Nature is just too cool a chick to not allow him the dynamite pleasure of skating in March.

Pluck O’ The Irish

March 17, 2015

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! Are you wearing green? Drinking excessively? Does it really matter?

Since most Americans’ knowledge of Irish history and culture comes from a Lucky Charms commercial, I thought it might be an apt time to examine the real reasons behind the celebratory revels.

So here are 10 things you didn’t know about Saint Pat, Irish history and culture!

1. Saint Patrick was probably born in Roman Britain, about AD 385. He was originally called Maewyn, a name that, even in that historic era, no doubt got his butt kicked at recess more often than not. (more…)

A Seminal Idea

March 14, 2015

The Internet. 

A wild, wonderful, wacky world of web whimsy. From unique and useful archival information to creative and artistic fiction and video, the dubya dubya dubya is a portal for the everyman to access the universe as we know it, warts and all. But has technology gone too far? 

Driving to a movie a while back, I heard a radio promo for an NPR show on fertility science. A throwaway line used to tout the piece mentioned a fact about our online outlet that I did not know. Maybe you did. Check this out: 

You can buy sperm over the Internet. 

That’s right. Sperm. The male gamete! The juice of life! Poppaseed! SPERM!!!   

Understand that I am not out to make fun of the impotent or the infertile, but I must point out that if you are so desperate to make a baby you are willing to purchase semen over the Internet then maybe you aren’t cut out to be a parent.   

At the very least, maybe you should seriously consider adoption! Or a goldfish.


So Long and Thanks For All The Fiction

March 11, 2015

Today is the birthday of the late Douglas Adams. Sadly, my grief is still tender as we lost him, far too soon, 14 years ago. Has it been that long? Tragically, it seems longer. Here’s a piece I penned shortly after I heard the news of his death. A little something to manage the grief and bid adieu to a friend I only wish I had.

I didn’t know him.

We weren’t friends. I never sent him a card for his birthday. We didn’t go to see movies together, grab dinner sometimes after work or play Scrabble to pass the time. I never called him up late at night to talk about “The West Wing” or forwarded a funny email that someone sent me. He couldn’t have picked me out of a lineup if his life had depended on it.

But I met him. Once. An encounter, more like. At the ICA, the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London.

He was there to promote his newest book. I was there to catch a glimpse of my idol. I skipped class and sat in the back, just thankful to be in the same room with the man. (more…)


March 10, 2015

Five Lame Insults

Your Mom flosses!

I’ll make you change your pants!

Eat sheet cake and diet!

May your offspring require proof of childhood vaccinations upon entering university!

I hope a chiropractor overcharges you!


Five Childhood Crushes

Tina W. in my 5th grade class

Paula H. in my 6th grade class

Paula’s friend, Wendy A.

Kim Richards

Eric’s mom


Five Irrational Fears

Fear that corn can hear you

Fear of being haunted by the ghost of Boris Yeltsin

Fear of asphyxiation by caramel

Fear of the known

Fear of being forced to dress up like a rabbi at gunpoint


Five Live Performances I Saw

Rick Rock, Buddha Buddha

Gordon Lightfoot, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald

Steve Forbert, Romeo’s Tune

10,000 Maniacs, Trouble Me

Suzanne Vega, Marlene On The Wall


Five Ways I Nearly Died

Falling down that manhole during a snowstorm

Being thrown from that ride at the county fair

Of embarrassment when Courtney’s mom caught us

Kidnapped by Scientologists in London

In Your Arms Tonight (It must’ve been some kind of kiss)


You Say You Want An Evolution

March 8, 2015

I heard a piece on NPR a while back that debated the morality and ethics of the insertion of human stem cells into monkey brains. While some felt it was a good way to study the effect of stem cells on primate neurology, others feared the technique could alter the animals’ abilities in ways that might make them more human-like. In fact, a panel of 22 experts (including primatologists, stem cell researchers, lawyers and philosophers) debated the possible consequences of the technique for more than a year, and while the group concurred it is “unlikely that grafting human stem cells into the brains of non-human primates would alter the animals’ abilities in morally relevant ways,” the members “also felt strongly that the risk of doing so was real and too ethically important to ignore.”

Forgive my kneejerk overreaction here but I’ve watched way too much sci fi and read far too many comic books to not see the writing on the walls here. Come on! Kamandi? Planet of the Apes, anyone?  Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp, fer cryin’ out loud?!

Oh well … if it’s destiny …

I, for one, welcome our simian overlords and look forward to cooperating with them as best I can. Maybe I’ll get a cushy job picking fleas and ticks off some lesser politico. That way, I can avoid an early death slaving away in the banana mines. (They do grow bananas in mines, right?)