7.30.2013

I Think I See Your Problem

If your cat was found and you're sick of getting calls, AND you happen to remember where you put up your fliers...why would you write on them that the cat was found and not, y'know, take the fucking fliers down?


7.22.2013

Uh...what?

When I was in high school and college I was in a band with my best friends. A lot of the times instead of doing things like practicing or trying to land gigs we would write and record silly comedic novelty songs. They were usually about sex, eating, or sex. We weren't terribly creative but we amused ourselves to no end. The guys would suggest we drop the whole "funk/rock band" thing (it was the '90s) and do filthy comedy songs. For some reason I always balked at the idea as "not artistic enough," whatever that means. I don't really know why I sort of arbitrarily decided I was above such things, but aside from recording ourselves dicking around for our own amusement I never really did much with those song ideas.

Which is a shame, because now I see shit like this all the time and I think, "I could've been a millionaire."



7.19.2013

Well, if You're Gonna Die Tragically...

As a person with panic disorder, I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about death. Specifically, I worry about how I will die (and how my loved ones might die). Death itself is scary enough, but there's something very undignified about dying when I imagine it. One moment you're all there, your soul or spirit or whatever makes you you is present and accounted for. And the next you're just this...thing. Just meat, slowly rotting on the floor or in your bed or at the base of a volcano or whatever. That's actually the scary part to me about dying: becoming this burden on everyone, not only in the sense of mourning or missing me (hopefully), but particularly the part where someone, at some point, has to figure out the logistics of disposing of my corpse. Money will probably change hands. That just feels gross.

Which is why I think, if you have to die, you could do a lot worse JoaquĆ­n Alcaraz Gracia.

7.18.2013

The Wall Street Journal is Making Videos Like The Onion Now

That's the joke, right? They're getting into The Onion-style satire, right? Because otherwise someone at WSJ watched this, thought it was worthwhile, and posted it. Why the fuck is Will.I.Am being consulted for logos? If you're making a video about plagiarizing people's beats, fine. Bring him in. If you're doing a piece on how pandering can make you a multimillionaire, by all means. But why logos? Does he have a graphic design background that's never come up?

Hyperbole gets bandied about on the internet quite a bit, but please believe me when I say this is literally the stupidest fucking thing I have ever seen. I hate Will.I.Am for (poorly) reading these words, I hate the Wall Street Journal for recording this and putting it online so more people would be subjected to it, and I hate myself for having watched it. I need a drink.


7.17.2013

Badvertising: Way to Hedge Your Bets


This is a perfect example of the kind of death-by-focus-group bullshit corporations do to creative work constantly. "We can't just say it's for winners!" "What about people who don't identify as winners?" "Are we liable if someone eats one of these and doesn't win the next competitive thing they do?" "I'm okay with this if we include losers, also. But make sure it's not just for losers."

These are the battles that creative people fight in corporate environments. I love your idea! But we have to change it because we would much rather only slightly appeal to everyone than REALLY appeal to a group smaller than everyone.

7.16.2013

I Bet This Person Left Disappointed


I'm always fascinated by the stuff that leads seemingly random people to my tiny blog.

Last week I was flooded with visitors from Beijing linked from their version of Twitter because apparently there's some pop culture phenomenon in China called "Life with Randy." I'm sure they were pretty bewildered.

Ever since I first posted this piece about getting spammed for insurance sales positions, someone in St. Paul, MN has visited the blog every two or three days. I like to think they just can't stop reading it, laughing hysterically as tears roll down their face. Then again with my luck it's probably one of the insurance dudes who emails me constantly and he's building a lawsuit or something.

Tons* of people click my Life After the Bell story on Lisa Turtle because they seem to be looking for photos of the real-life train wreck Lark Voorhies became. Similarly, each girl from Saved by the Bell mentioned on here gets a regular stream of traffic from people searching things like "Jessi Spano nude" or "Kelly Kapowski sex." There's a search history I'm proud to be part of. "Stacy Carosi" gets the most frequent traffic of the group for some reason. Not even in a sexualized way (although there are some), people just type in "Stacy Carosi" on Google and wind up here. 

But far and away my biggest traffic contributors, for some reason, are a ring of shady Russian, Ukranian, and Chinese websites with names like wreune.ru or azbuka-sro.ru (don't go to those places; I haven't visited because I have no doubt they're malware landmines waiting to blow your computer's legs off). 

I don't know why these places send so much traffic my way. I don't get many spam comments here at all. I think I've had two so far this year. Have I accidentally discovered the secrets to Cyrillic SEO targeting through my fumbling attempts at humor writing in English? Does my style of "mildly-amusing diatribe" just happen to really resonate with the types of people who steal credit card numbers and launch botnet attacks? 

Who ARE these people?







* "Tons" being a relative term meaning, like, six.

7.11.2013

Badvertising: This Shouldn't Bother Me as Much as it Does

Here. Watch this shitty Taco Bell commercial:

Pretty unremarkable, right? So they stuffed more grade-C meat in a quesadilla. Yay! But this commercial bugs me. Sure, at first glance it's a celebrity chef explaining her "decision" to make a new quesadilla thing for Taco Bell. She explains how she told the folks at Taco Bell it's got to have great ingredients or whatever or else she wouldn't do it. Then for some reason she waves her knife in people's faces and laughs about how the Taco Bell folks seemed nervous because it was so much steak. Fine. We get it.


But wait. These people are wearing Taco Bell uniforms. Aren't THEY the Taco Bell people, then? And they seem to be making a double steak quesadilla: one guy's walking around with a plate of steak and there are lots of generic Mexican food-looking-ingredients, like chile peppers and shredded cheese.

They also get nervous right as the chef talks about the Taco Bell people getting nervous. She then threatens each of them that "YOU will love it." Why would the Taco Bell people care that a group of strangers in a kitchen would want the quesadilla? Except they ARE Taco Bell people. And she seems to think it's because there's too much steak.

Is the premise of this commercial that chef Lorena Garcia has become unstuck in time through some sort of chrono-distortion and is somehow reliving future events in the present while discussing them as though they were the past? Is this some sort of Slaughterhouse Five promotion?

I realize I'm really scraping the bottom of the barrel as far as annoyances go, but this is so lazy. Did no one read the script before they shot this and realize she is literally explaining a thing that happened to the people it is currently happening to? JUST BECAUSE YOU'RE MAKING A 30-SECOND SPOT ABOUT SHITTY QUESADILLAS DOESN'T MEAN YOU DON'T HAVE TO RESPECT THE INTELLIGENCE OF YOUR AUDIENCE, TACO BELL.

I know, I know. But some of us can't sit still and let injustice go unpunished.

7.09.2013

God Damn am I Glad There Was No Internet When I Was a Kid

Otherwise, I'd have several years' worth of shit like this haunting me. Although these guys aren't really kids any more, so I'm not sure what their excuse is.


7.08.2013

Diary of Descent: April



March

April 1
1:30p
April Fools.

I remember when we had time for things like practical jokes and pranks. Back when my biggest concern was getting to work on time and having enough spare cash to hit up the bar. I can't tell you how many mornings I wake up hoping it's April Fools Day, or that it was all a bad dream. It still doesn't feel real. 

I've got plenty of down time now while I recover. Figured I'd update this on just what the hell happened over the last month or so.

The hospital was crawling with freaks, living and dead, roaming the outside trying to get in. I honestly don't know what was more horrific: the noise or the stench. They reeked of death and disease and their howling and roaring was like a ghoulish drone of locusts rising into the sky. It was punctuated only with gunshots from the group of survivors on the roof of the hospital. All the shooting was a great distraction and allowed me to get the propane I'd lifted from the diner underneath the firetruck, but now I had a new problem: all the monsters were heading away from the truck and closer to the hospital. An explosion might make a lot of noise and distract them, but it wouldn't thin their numbers much.

I threw open the door to the cab and noticed immediately that the truck's dome light came on. I threw my hand down on the horn and the blast erupted. Instantly a group of 10 or so turned to face me. They looked almost comical the way they craned their necks, trying to parse what they'd just heard. My fingers rattled across the dash, flipping every toggle and switch I could hit. Soon enough the siren was on, nearly deafening me, while the emergency lights illuminated the entire square. The dead walking responded with their own unearthly scream and I suddenly became aware of thousands of empty, soulless eyes trained on me. 

I sprinted down the street, weaving in between cars to try and slow down my pursuers. I didn't have enough time to turn and fire at the propane; they would be on me before I could even line up my shot, and if I couldn't hit a zombie from four feet away I didn't like my odds of hitting a propane tank under a truck from 30 yards. I fumbled with the rifle while I dodged grasping hands and open jaws. I thought of Val, stuck up there, afraid for her life, and I turned to fire. I was committed to providing a distraction to free her, even if it meant giving up my own life. I wheeled around the corner of the hospital to try and buy some time when I saw the Emergency Room entryway.

There was a group of three of them beating on the doors to the ER. I stopped and brought the rifle up to take aim, but I couldn't focus through the scope with my heart pounding and my breathing so heavy. I closed my eyes and took a breath, then refocused. I lined up the crosshairs of the scope dead center in the back of one of them. My finger tightened on the trigger and I started to squeeze.

Suddenly everything went black and I was spinning to the ground. The shot rang out wild, and I could hear the bullet embed itself in the concrete of the hospital. I fell to the ground and landed on my stomach. Almost instantly I felt a crushing weight on my back. The screams started at the same time as the blows raining down from above. One of those things had come running around the corner and floored me with a punch to the head and was on top of me, pummeling me. I couldn't shake the fog from my brain enough to try and throw it off, my arms and legs were jelly underneath me. I began crawling, slowly, towards the road to try and get away. 

7.07.2013

A Simple Guide on How to Choose To What You Will Masturbate

The hour is late. The lights are low. You've had a long day. Maybe you need help falling asleep. Maybe you need help staying awake. Your mind begins to wander. Your hand runs gently down your belly…

Congratulations! You have made the most important step towards masturbating: deciding to do so. Throughout our hectic, workaday lives we can lose sight of the important things. Namely, taking the time to appreciate one's body, one's mind, and truly one's self in a carnal manner. Don't let pundits and demagogues fool you; masturbation is harmless and a perfectly ordinary and acceptable way for humans to feel good. However, before we begin you're going to need to make an important decision. Namely, to whom will you masturbate?

7.05.2013

These Kinds of Decisions Should not Paralyze a Man

My wife's out of town, which means I'm entrusted with maintaining our home in such a manner so as to ensure it doesn't burst into flames. The big stuff is pretty easy: pay some bills, mow the lawn, scrub the toilet every 60 days or so. I can handle that. Other stuff is a little harder to keep up with. Specifically, the stuff Kat does not out of preventative maintenance but more for her own edification, like gardening. 

I'm not really into gardening. The couple who owned our house before us definitely were into gardening though, so we've got tons of cool stuff like wisteria and grape vines and strawberries and raspberries and poppies and seriously like 15 more cool looking plants I have no idea what to call. Oh and roses. I appreciate that stuff, too. It's all really beautiful, it brings the yard to life with all kinds of fun bugs and hummingbirds and things, and if nothing else it adds serious curb appeal to our house. Kat's into gardening. She's got it in her genes, too; her mom has a plantation-style garden of everything from pineapples and jade to lilies and avocados (it helps that she lives in Hawaii). By contrast, my mom has killed plastic plants and when trying to buy a concrete pineapple for the front porch (apparently that's like a thing people do to signify "welcome," as opposed to buying a welcome mat) she brought home a giant concrete artichoke instead. It took my dad, sister, and I roughly 20 minutes to convince her it wasn't a pineapple.

The point is I'm bad at gardening.

7.02.2013

OUR FAMILY FEUD POST-MORTEM

Hey Harrison Family, 

I know we're all still kind of reeling after Thursday's taping, but it's best to go over our mistakes on Family Feud now while they're still fresh and we can learn something from them. Let me start this off by saying one thing: I'M PROUD OF YOU GUYS. Seriously. Your hard work has been appreciated since the submission stage, through the auditions, and even when the wheels kind of came off at the end there, you still worked hard. I appreciate that, I really do. This advice is to make us better, not to hurt anyone's feelings, so please don't take it that way. With that said, let's look at what I think were the mental errors that led to our downfall.