Helping You Get the Most Out of Your Misery






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Friday, August 22, 2008


Hitting the Snooze Button

Hey folks. Things are going to be kinda quiet around here for a few days. They're doing Rhythmic Gymnastics at the Olympics and there's nothing I love better than watching someone twirl a ribbon around a lot.

Also, my parents are in town.

So I'll be back next week with an Olympic wrap-up, a reflection on my summer reading, a back-to-school Hairshirt Horoscope and a one-on-one interview with Mohamar Khadaffi.

Have a lovely fucking weekend!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Hairshirt Horoscope

Aries: No matter how desperately you wish it otherwise, you are not a vampire. So take those stupid fucking fangs out of your mouth and go outside for awhile.

Taurus: This week, Tarus, try to remember that other people may not see things the same way you do. And it doesn't make them "fucking idiots" or "sub-human garbage" or in any way justify you "kicking the living shit" out of them.

Gemini: Yes, Gemini, your fears are well-founded. It is utterly embarrassing for a person in their 30s to be listening to the Jonas Brothers. In fact, you're kind of an embarrassment to all of us in our 30s.

Cancer: Just try to remember something as you approach the microphone: the audience is there to listen to you give a presentation on the use of computer technology in the study of microbes, not to hear your amazing beat-box skillz. Keep that in mind and it should all go swimmingly.

Leo: You are a grown-up, Leo. And if you want to eat nothing but lasagna and Oreos for a week, nobody has the right to stop you.

Virgo: Summer's coming to an end, Virgo. Do you really want to be the only one at camp who hasn't hooked up with someone? Sure, some people are going to say that prison isn't really like "camp", but they can mind their own beeswax.

Libra: Inspired by the amazing box office success of Iron Man and The Dark Knight, you've come up with your own idea for an awesome super hero movie, Libra. But before you commit to all that time writing a screenplay, you need to ask yourself: How marketable is a hero called Stamina Man whose sole super power is the ability to not ejaculate prematurely?

Scorpio: This week, Scorpio, you take inspiration from gold-medal winners Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor by never giving up, going for your goals as hard as you can and slapping other women on the butt all the time.

Sagittarius: This might be a beautiful day for a picnic lunch, Sagittarius. Sadly, for you, a picnic lunch basically means sitting on a park bench, eating a Slim Jim and drinking a can of Diet Squirt.

Capricorn: They say a coward dies a thousand deaths, Capricorn. Of course, that first one usually does the trick, doesn't it?

Aquarius: Other people will be bothering you all week with their selfish demands, Aquarius. "Please stop hurting me." "Let me go." "Why are you keeping me locked in this pit?" You need to just try to shut your ears to your self-centeredness and do what you need to do for you.

Pisces: People aren't always going to comprehend your feelings, Pisces. But a relationship takes work. It takes someone who wants to understand their mate and someone who wants to be understood. So talk to your partner. Try to get them to see what a magical thing it is to be a Furry.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Painting II: The Bedroom

Got the one wall painted quite handily last week. It looks good, if you like fuckin' awesome-lookin' walls. Which I do. Things went so well that I'm taking it to the bedroom.

Okay, that was always the plan and wasn't based on the end results of my brush-efforts on the other side of the apartment.

Things are a little different in the bedroom, though. Mostly 'cause of the bed. Our bed has not changed spots since we moved in. And the space under the bed is the closest thing we've got to a storage unit. So there's a whole goddamn lot of stuff that needs to be shifted around.

In process of moving this massive amount of crap, I made the happiest discovery I've experienced in ages: I found my frisbee! I thought I'd lost it last year and spend a full month in mourning. (I wore a whole lot of black.) But now I have it again, just in time for summer to end! Huzzah! Sheep Meadow, here I come!


Please, Ohio, Don't Let Me Down Again

I heard something a little bit disturbing on The Takeaway this morning.

(Now, I need to take a moment here to confess that I don't normally listen to The Takeaway. I don't like it. It reminds me of Gogurt, in that it's a totally unnecessary attempt to hip-ify something that fundamentally does not need to be cool. NPR news programs should be a slightly dull, in-depth look at the issues of the day. They don't need to have "hi-tech" bleepity-bloopity computer noises in between each segment. I'm quite resentful that my local NPR station has taken away another hour of Morning Edition, even though that hour is repeated at 8:00. Sorry. I've been holding that in for awhile now.)

Anyway, The Takeaway sent its political director across the country to the Democratic Convention, doing daily reports along the way. This morning, she came to us from southern Ohio, I'd have to guess down around Marietta, maybe.

She was talking to residents of the county who'd voted for Clinton in the primary and, to a person, they all said they weren't going to vote for Obama. Now, they gave a variety of reasons. One guy cited Obama's lack of experience. Another guy just claimed not to like either candidate and said he'll sit this one out. A third person said she was a giant Hillary-ite and, while she hasn't made her mind up about who'll get her vote, she's definitely not going to donate money or volunteer for Obama.

Yo no entiendo. What's confusing about this? How can you look at these two candidates and not realize what you need to do? It's pretty fucking simple, actually. If you've spent the last eight years queasy and depressed; if you don't want to see the Supreme Court packed with even more right-wingers who will do their level best to strip you of your rights; if you don't want to see a continuation of the same failed policies from someone who has utterly sold his soul to ingratiate himself to the Republican base, then you cannot vote for McCain.

If you supported Hillary and desperately wanted finally to see a woman elected to lead us; if you believe in what Hillary stood for and want to have someone in office who stands for a lot of those same ideals; if you want someone who is going to protect our civil liberties, then you must vote for Obama.

Now, I admit, I did not support Hillary in the primaries, so I do not have my radar set to detect every slight policy difference between her and Barack Obama that might turn people off. So there could be a lot that I'm missing. But a lot of people's distaste for him seems (and please remember that I'm saying seems, here) to come from two areas: he's not a woman and he's not white.

Listening to the people interviewed on The Takeaway this morning, it was odd, because no matter what words were actually coming out of their mouths, all I heard was, "I'm not voting for a black guy."

Maybe I'm completely wrong on this. Maybe some people are genuinely put off by his lack of national experience. Maybe some people were actually so invested in Clinton that they just can't face a general election of which she is not a part. Tough shit.

Whatever your reasons--racism, dubiousness or sour grapes--get the fuck over them, take your fucking head out of your smelly ass and pull the goddamn lever in November or this country takes another giant step backward.

Friday, August 15, 2008


The Devil's Own Urine

Let me make just one thing utterly clear:

If it truly "...isn't Summer until you crack open a bottle of..." Bud Light Lime, then I'd much, much rather live in a world of eternal Winter.

I mean, ick.


Hello, Pot? This Is Kettle...

Yes, Russia's aggression in invading a sovereign nation should be condemned! That's right! You tell 'em, George! You tell 'em what the world thinks of self-important bastards who think they have the right to unilaterally do whatever the hell they want! Yeah! The international community won't stand for someone just overthrowing a government based on flimsy or even made up reasons! Bastards!

Jesus fucking Christ, we need a new president.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Things to Tell Hairshirt, Junior

I'm finding myself periodically taking note of what's going on in the world around me. Which is great, because I normally wander about in a Magoo-like haze of obliviousness.

No, I don't, really.

What makes this current note-taking different than just general awareness is that I'm doing it specifically so that I can one day tell my son, "Well, when your mom was pregnant with you, we were living in Harlem. I remember it was a hot summer and Mommy was so uncomfortable that she slept in a bathtub filled with Jell-o because it was the only way she could get any rest."

(She's not really doing that.)

I don't tend to spend days and days thinking about 1970, but I remember being curious, at various points in my life, what things were like both for my parents and for the world in general when I entered it. So I want to make sure I've got my facts straight.

"Well, son, before President Obama was elected, there was this guy named George W. Bush."

"Is he the president they later found out was actually retarded, Dad?"

"Yup. That's him, son."

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Hairshirt Horoscope (Special Olympic Edition)

Aries: This week, you're feeling a little like the Angolan Women's Team Handball squad; nobody gives a shit about what you do and you kind of suck at it anyway.

Taurus: Let your spirit run swift and true this week, Taurus. Just like an Olympic hurdler, but without all the steroids.

Gemini: The Olympics are a little confusing for you, sexually, Gemini. You're not certain whether which mildly arouses you more: Women's Soccer or Men's Pommel Horse. It's okay. A lot of the athletes are just as confused as you.

Cancer: You kind of have the feeling that you could play badminton at an Olympic level. You couldn't. You'd lose so badly that you'd be reduced to a quivering pile of sobbing jello on the court.

Leo: There's nothing like celebrating the beauty of athletics by sitting in front of the TV, watching a swimming competition while you eat a bag of White Castle.

Virgo: Your child will rue the day you watched Michael Phelps wave to his mother from the podium. He'll mark it as ground zero in your doomed attempt to make him an Olympian when he really just wanted to play Grand Theft Auto with his friends. Yay, parenting!

Libra: Watching Women's Beach Volleyball naked is not a valid way to "support Title IX". It's just creepy.

Scorpio: If there was a gold medal in the Being a Dipshit competition, Scorpio, you'd be at the top of the podium.

Sagittarius: All the commercials you're watching during the Olympics have you believing that your life would seem much, much cooler if Morgan Freeman were narrating it.

Capricorn: Seeing the U.S.A. Women's Fencing Team sweep the medals in the Individual Sabre competition fills you with an unusual nationalistic pride. Which is swept away almost immediately when you see George Bush acting like a dipshit in the stands.

Aquarius: Competitive Shrimp-Eating will not be a sport in the 2012 London Games, no matter how many angry letters you send to the I.O.C. Give it up and save yourself a few thousand dollars on practice cocktail sauce.

Pisces: Thank God for the Olympics, Pisces. Yup, every four years, you get a legitimate excuse to be a horrible, horrible racist.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Me Spread Pretty Colors on Wall

We've got a long-ass list of things we want to get done to be ready for Il Bambino. And, so far, we've been really, really, really, really fucking slow to get off our asses and make it happen. Not that big a deal, I guess. I mean, we should have plenty of time and energy on our hands when the kid is born, right? Am I right?

The thing about this list, though, is that a lot of it needs to happen in a very specific order. We couldn't move furniture from one room to the other until we got some painting done. We couldn't get painting done until we got rid of a desk that was in the way. We couldn't get the desk out of the way as long as it was possessed by a poltergeist and spat blood at us every time we went near it.

So I've been spending a lot of time the last couple of months giving my wife my best shoulder-shrugging, what-can-I-do sort of look when she points at her belly and then points at the calendar. (We often have these mimed conversations; we feel it deepens our connection to be able to communicate entirely non-verbally.)

I was supremely disappointed, then, when my wife successfully found a couple who not only needed a desk, but were willing to perform an exorcism to get it. They hauled it out of here a couple of weeks ago (after I'd wiped the remaining blood off of it), which left the rest of the dominoes ready to fall.

Finally, today, I'm pushing on domino numero dos. I'm painting! Hey, look at me! I'm painting! I'm Mr. Paintsy-Pants!

Okay, actually, I'm Mr. Primesy-Pants, as I'm only doing the primer today, but still. I was a little nervous about this, as I haven't painted anything since I helped paint the pavilion at grandparents' campground when I was fourteen. And that went so poorly that I somehow managed to paint my entire arm the same color as the wall and couldn't find it for a good half-hour.

But this is going okay so far this morning. I got the first coat of non-VOC primer up with no major incidents. I didn't manage to paint a white stripe down the cat's back, which could have lead to much sexual confusion when a foreign skunk would have tried to romance him. I didn't fall off of the step-ladder and land on my bottom. Not out of the woods yet, though, as I've got the second coat in about an hour and a half and then I've got the actual painting to get through.

Pray for me, folks.

Monday, August 11, 2008



Well that was boring and anticlimactic both!

Sat in the plush District Court Jury Assembly Room in the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Courthouse and read/slept/watched the rain from 8:30 until nearly 3:00 (with a break for a greasy lunch nearby) and then was told to leave and not come back. Yee-haw!

That's right, I'm safe for another four years or so (I was in such a big-ass hurry to get the fuck out of there that I didn't check with the clerk how long I was covered) and I didn't have to take questions from an attorney or anything.

So that's twice now that I've come close to having to sit on a jury and slipped out of it. I pity the defendant when I actually get selected some day. I'm going to be so fucking annoyed that I'll vote for the death penalty even if it's a fucking jay-walking case.

But whatever. I'm cleared to spend the next sixteen days enjoying my freedom, watching the Olympics and sleeping as late as I want. Suck it, world!

Sunday, August 10, 2008


Here There Be Diapers

There are, when you're an expectant couple, hundreds and hundreds of decisions you have to make. It's kind of part of the fun of the whole thing. You winnow down a list of potential names. You pick out a set of bedding for the crib and put it on your baby registry. You decide whether or not your wife is going to be receiving a whole lot of drugs to help dull the pain that you don't have to experience during delivery. (Sorry about that, honey.)

Many of these decisions, which you make at various points along the 40-week journey, you may research and rethink and reevaluate. Strollers, for instance. My wife and I went to a baby box store a month or so back and tested out some strollers and we've been doing an informal survey ever since, checking out every single stroller we see and deciding how satisfied the various people we see wheeling them around look with their purchase. I used to gawk at short skirts, now I'm staring at Bugaboos and McClarens. Ye gods.

Anyway, part of what's cool about these decisions you're making is that they don't actually have any kind of impact on your, y'know, life. These are decisions you're making for down the road. I can say, "Yes, my son will be circumcised!" and it's pretty goddamn easy to say right now because I'm not there watching some dude go after my kid's johnson with a scalpel.

But one of those decisions we made over the last 31 weeks or so became concrete today and it freaks me out just a little.

We did a study of sorts of our diapering options. Neither of us like the thought of our kid's shit sitting in a landfill and his great-grandson being able to pay said poo a visit a hundred and ten years from now. On the other hand, cloth diapers in a New York apartment sans a washing machine just sounds like a recipe for nausea.

So, in the end, we decided we'd try gDiapers. They're an environmentally friendly product that combines a washable "pant"--that's their term; I couldn't come up with anything great to clarify--and a flushable/disposable/compostable insert that actually catches the poo. Let me say right here and now that we won't be composting them. (Again, New York apartment + noses = no mountain of feces.)

These things fit with our world-view, they seem reasonably priced and they catch poo.

We congratulated ourselves on our decision and then got a full, uninterrupted night's sleep. So wonderful when these decisions are about things way, way down the road.

Then, today, we were picking up a $35 head of lettuce in Whole Foods when my wife noticed that they sell gDiapers. So we got some. Let me say that again, in a slightly more panicky way: The diapers that are going to stop my son from peeing directly on me are now in our home!

Holy bubble-blowing Jesus, this kid's coming! I'm going to be responsible for another human being! I can't even remember to water my plants! Fu-u-u-u-u-uck!

No, seriously, it's cool. It's just weird having diapers in the house.

Friday, August 08, 2008


He's a Who-o-o-o-ore!

That's just great. Nice going, peckerhead! You're one of a handful of well-respected Democratic leaders who can draw some positive attention to the presidential race and then you go and cheat on your cancer-stricken wife.

I'm thinking--and I'm just spit-ballin' here--that it just might be a good idea for us to go ahead and chemically castrate any man running for national office. Democrat or Republican; straight, gay or airport-bathroom-haunting; vanilla, kinky or downright perverse. These guys need to learn the number-one most important fucking rule of politics: keep it in your pants!

Nobody wants to think about their elected officials having an orgasm. Nobody.



I was taking a look at the schedule for the Olympics (which start today!) and I noticed that there have been some changes to the events. I guess this isn't all that unusual; I mean, I believe they have, through the years, included various "demonstration" sports at the Games. These sports aren't in the official competition, but countries can send athletes to participate.

So these additions to the list of recognized games are meant to reflect the host country and promote these sports to a world-wide audience. Which is cool. I'm just not entirely sure if the Chinese Olympic Committee put quite enough thought into them. Here's a few off of the roster:
  • Free-Style Sweat Shop--This is a team sport in which a group of athletes has to produce the most fake Gucci handbags. I hear the Kazakhstani team is the team to watch.
  • Women's Cockfighting--I always love to see women get a chance to prove themselves in a traditionally male-dominated sport.
  • Dissident Toss--What a great way to include people with dangerous political views in the games!
  • Pillsbury Bake-Off--I'm not too sure about this one. I think it might be some vague indication that the Chinese government is not above taking bribes from multi-national corporations. Or maybe they just like cobbler.
  • 100-Yard Tank Stop--Talk about turning lemons into lemonade! China has taken what was once a symbol of uprising and resistance and turned it into an Olympic sport! So an athlete stands in front of a tank and, if he/she looks defiant enough, the tank doesn't run them over.
  • Competitive Smoking--With so much of the rest of the world quitting, the Chinese wanted something they'd have a clear advantage in.
Well I, for one, am thrilled to have all these new sports to watch. You can only take so much Table Tennis, y'know?


Jury Duty II: The Quickening

I mentioned it briefly yesterday, but it's still on my mind, so I'll go ahead and blather on about it again. I've got jury duty next week. Feh.

Originally, I was supposed to go in, I think, January. It was right in the middle of the school year, so I asked for a postponement. They postponed it until March. So March rolls around and I'm going about my March business; maybe dressing up like a leprechaun, maybe just walking around in a raincoat, I don't remember. But I'm sitting down at my desk one day and I realize that I was supposed to report for jury duty the day before.

At this point, I'm a bit panicky. Because, when you show up for jury duty and you timidly raise your hand and ask someone what's happening to all these people whose names are being called but aren't there, someone with a badge or a robe tells you, "Oh, don't worry. Anyone who skips out on this is looking at a heavy fine." Or something along those lines.

So, being on the poorish side and not wanting to have to explain to my wife that I got slapped with a $1000 fine because I'm forgetful, I dial the County Clerk's office and start begging for forgiveness and pleading with them to give me another chance. And of course the lady on the phone is like, "What? Why are you bothering me with something so stupid when I'm eating my Egg McMuffin?" I definitely got the vibe from her that the court system did not give two squirts of yak piss whether I showed up or not. It was more like, "Well okay. If you really feel the need to serve, we'll reschedule you."

And, being kind of a goody-two-shoes, or at least someone who hates to be in trouble with his employers, I went ahead and rescheduled for during summer vacation. Which means that I don't actually get summer vacation, seeing as how I just wrapped up summer school yesterday and I go back in on August 27th. Again, feh.

There have got to be people out there who never go to jury duty and never suffer any consequences. Why am I not that person? Why? *sigh*

Oh, and another thing: I just actually looked at the jury summons for the first time and I realized that it's for the U.S. District Court. The original summons was for New York Supreme Court. I didn't realize that I could just be tossed from one court to another without any warning, like a minor league right fielder. So now the judicial system is a pimp and I'm just a whore they can treat like property and share among their friends? No sir! I am a human being, with dignity! Or, okay, maybe not dignity, but feelings at least. And I--

Wait, I just realized that the U.S. District Court is the nice one with plush carpeting and relatively comfortable seating, as opposed to the Kafkaesque shithole that is New York State Court. So that's not so bad. And I'll be able to get a lot of reading done, so that's nice, right? Oh! Maybe I can be bribed! Hey criminals! I'm for sale!

Thursday, August 07, 2008


Summer Reading Project Update

So we're now a full week into August. I go back to work on the 27th (but not before I get to experience the unbridled joy of jury duty next week!). In short, summer's already winding down. And have I kept pace with my previously discussed reading plans? Not to put too fine a point on it: Fuck no.

It's not entirely my fault, though. I put the toughest read on my list first. John Adams was really interesting. I always like reading a book after seeing the movie adaptation, because you get all the good shit they had to leave out. He was a complex guy living in complex times who had complex relationships. The thing is, as much as I enjoyed it, John Adams is the sort of book that takes me a long time to get through. There are so many details to keep straight. It's not chock-full of breezy, quick-to-read dialogue, like a novel. And it was really fucking heavy, so I was tired when I was reading it. Anyway, the point is, it took me awhile.

Then my reading schedule got completely fucked up when we visited with some friends of ours. These friends of ours live in Baltimore, but are moving way, way far away soon. Which sucks, because now they won't be a nice little five hour drive away. Blerg. So, when we hooked up with these friends and their two awesome boys, they'd brought with them a big-ass bag of comics that I'd loaned them two years ago. (Roughly)

The bag contained the entire runs of Starman and Preacher, as well as the first five volumes of Y: The Last Man. So you can see why I had no choice but to put my other reading on hold and plow through each of those series again. It's not like I had a choice or anything.

When I finished those this week, I finally started in on my library books. I finished The Chris Farley Show in relatively short order and am nearly halfway through Born Standing Up, which I started this morning. Show biz memoirs don't seem to take long to read, do they? Huh.

I've got Ragtime and The Road sitting on the desk in front of me, ready and waiting when I'm done with Steve Martin. And I just got word that Soon I Will Be Invincible is now at the library for me. Still waiting on my Hammett stories and Confederacy of Dunces. Who knew it'd take that frigging long for them to come in? I sure didn't know that. That's who.

To sum up, then: Big books make my brain hurt and I get distracted by pretty pictures.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


Hairshirt Horoscope

Aries: Your armpit-fart rendition of "Stairway to Heaven" is not quite as profound and moving as you think.

Taurus: Your hectic schedule may have you feeling a bit tired, Taurus. No matter how exhausted you are, though, you should never, ever neglect to buy your spouse tasty baked goods. Don't drop the ball, here.

Gemini: This is a very important week for you, Gemini, as you're heavily invested, emotionally, in the success of Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. I'm with you on that one. I mean, there were so many questions about the pants left unanswered in the first film.

Cancer: I realize health-care costs are skyrocketing and times are tough, Cancer, but there's no way your sick grandmother is going to believe a handful of Jelly Bellies are actually her pain meds. I mean, they say "Jelly Belly" right on there.

Leo: Leos might want to take some time this week to frolic in a natural setting. Those Leos who aren't down with the whole "frolicking" thing could try cavorting. Cavorting's good, too.

Virgo: Feeling out of touch with today's youth culture? Don't worry, Virgo. The next time you're around a bunch of college students, just drop a little hip slang on them. Say something they'll understand, like, "Hey Bazooka-face. Don't armstrong that poodle." They'll accept you as one of their own.

Libra: You've got a bit of a dilemma this week, Libra: you yearn to travel and see what the world has to offer. But, at the same time, you want to sit naked in your bathtub and eat Cheetos. I suggest a compromise: eat some Cheetos in a hotel room bathtub.

Scorpio: Your spiritual side needs some tending-to, Scorpio. And, no, that's not a good excuse to go out and pay for a handjob.

Sagittarius: You find John McCain strangely sexy, Sagittarius. And that scares you. It scares the hell out of you.

Capricorn: It's not okay to use the same plate five days in a row without washing it.

Aquarius: You find yourself this week feeling deeply nostalgic for your younger days. This does not mean that it's okay for you to hit on high school students, you disgusting old perv.

Pisces: Look out, Pisces! You might just catch Olympic Fever! Don't worry, it's only fatal 47% of the time.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


Would You Like Some Whine with Your Dinner?

I miss being on stage. There. I said it.

In Seattle, parts just kind of came your way after you'd established yourself. Which was nice. I did a lot of acting in Seattle.

When we moved here, I decided I didn't want to try to pursue acting, as it's basically a full-time job in this city. I decided to focus on writing instead. And now that's even fallen more or less by the wayside, as I've got a teaching career going and find myself too lazy to spend much energy on screenplays and such.

But every once in awhile, I get a really strong urge to be onstage. *sigh*

Maybe I'll do something about that. Or maybe I'll just bitch about it some more.

Monday, August 04, 2008


Peter and Desiree: A Love Story

My wife and I met when we worked at a huge bookstore that was part of the Barnes & Noble corporation. And yet, despite that wonderful association in our history, I really kind of hate that company. Maybe it's because they're part of the mall-ification of America. Maybe it's because I've heard their corporate training vampires talking about targeting independent book stores and doing their best to drive the little guys out of business.

But I'm also a giant fucking hypocrite, because I shop at B&N. Well, shit, man; they've got a lot of books.

In fact, my wife and I will occasionally pass very pleasant evenings stopping in at a local Barnes & Noble, grabbing a bunch of books we've no intention of buying off of the shelves and sitting down for an hour or so of reading.

We were engaged in this very activity recently when we witnessed the smoothest operator either of us had ever seen in action. A little tale I'll

He was a bookseller. A sales associate. A team member. A page monkey. Whatever the fuck you want to call him, he worked at the store and was paid, one assumes, for putting books away and for helping customers find whatever tomes they were looking for. But this guy was doing more than that. He was also doing his best to help certain customers find a love connection.

One young lady that asked for help finding something was apparently looking on the wrong floor. But this guy didn't lose his cool. He told her exactly where she needed to look. And then he added sexily, "Make sure you come back down and show it to me." I ask you, what woman wouldn't just take off her panties and hand them to her right there.

Our hero didn't stop there, though. He wasn't the kind of sales associate who can be limited to one lovely little lady. No. Yet another book-starved filly approached him, this one looking for something that was...right in his section.

Now would it have been seductive if he'd pointed and said, "Yeah, it's over there"? Naw, baby. He took her right to the shelf, pulled the volume down and put it in her hot little hands. Then he casually leaned against the shelf and engaged her in a little convo. "Where do you go? Really. I'm over at Parson's." (He could sense that anything associated with Project Runway would get this girl's motor running.)

He took her hand, moving in for the kill. "I'm Peter." She told him that her name was Desiree. She walked away, but you could sense the connection. As she rounded a corner, he turned to a colleague and gave a triumphant fist pump. He knew she'd be back for more Peter.

Friday, August 01, 2008


The Ostracized

Why can't we let the healing start, people? Why must we continue to widen the divisions between us and hate those who should, by all rights, be our friends?

I'm not talking about the Democrats, by the way, I'm talking about critics who trashed The Dark Knight.

David Edelstein, in New York Magazine, expressed his dislike for the film and was so traumatized by peoples' reactions that he felt the need to write a blog post to defend himself.

Stephanie Zacharek, the critic at, also hated the movie. And she's apparently so bugged by either the shit that's been flung at her since her review was posted or the success of a film she deems unworthy that she felt the need, two weeks later, in a review for a totally unrelated movie, to go back and slap The Dark Knight again:
In some ways I feel sorry for "Tomb of the Dragon Emperor" as an enterprise: Not only is it shoehorned into a forlorn early-August slot, by which point most of us are already suffering summer-blockbuster fatigue; it also has the further misfortune to arrive just a few weeks after the release of "The Dark Knight," a movie so revolutionary that Orson Welles himself has reportedly risen from his own emperor's tomb to concede that, you know, that "Citizen Kane" thing he made really wasn't so great after all.
I don't know if people in Batman costumes have hurled bags of dogshit at these poor critics or if they just hate feeling isolated from the people who loved the movie, but I just want to reach my hand out to both of them and say, "It's okay. You can not like the movie. But would you please shut the fuck up about it already?" I'm all about reconciliation.