Friday, February 5, 2016

Comedy Lesson 2.5


Part two of the assignment is to use one of several tools in the book to generate ten sketch ideas.  I'm going to go with the one where you create three columns: people, places, and props (or, as comedians call it, the PPP or the "creative raspberry").  Then you randomly combine them into sketch ideas.

Here goes:

People
Places
Props
Giant
Space
Book
Refrigerator repairman/woman
A jungle
Cheap magic trick
Living spark of electricity
The desert
Chair
Shy tourist
On a plane
Broken radio
Zombie
Monster truck rally
Box of 18 plastic banana peels
Police officer
Crawlspace of a house
Sunblock
Soldier
Circus tent
A scratched LP
Demon
Trunk of a car
Curtain rod

Okay, ten sketches:
  1. A giant who has been hiding in the trunk of a car for many years with only a copy of an 18th century girls' etiquette book to entertain himself.
  2. A zombie who repairs cars at a monster truck rally who can't get a radio to work (every time he changes the channel it advertises food, sending him into a frenzy).
  3. A soldier guarding a desert outpost complaining he was sent without sunblock while people are dropping bombs on him ("Yeah, I've got enough ammo, but I'm starting to freckle!").
  4. A shy tourist who was sent to vacation in the crawlspace under someone's house (he was too shy to point out the error) so he sits in a tiny chair, his head tilted to one side so he can fit under the floor and tries to enjoy it.
  5. A space police officer dumbfounded by a criminal who uses a cheap magic trick to confuse him.
  6. A living spark of electricity running wild in the electronics of an airplane radio and complaining about the stations.
  7. A refrigerator repairman in the jungle whose tools have accidentally been replaced with a box of 18 plastic banana peels.
  8. A demon comes to the circus and complains about the terrible seats (chair).
  9. A zombie magician (circus tent) who keeps trying to impress people with his cheap plastic magic trick.
  10. A giant airline pilot (airplane) who can't see out the window (curtain rod).

Hm.  Didn't use jungle or scratched LP.  Kinda had to force the curtain rod in there.  I suppose those things aren't particularly funny on their own.

Frankly, none of these seem all that funny.  I don't think my problem is an absence of funny premises (although it's nice to be able to come up with them).  I don't want to write comedy sketches. I want to be able to add comedy to my existing writing projects.


Maybe that's next week's lesson.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Comedy Lessons Part 2


Here we are at week 2 of my comedy lessons.

If you're just joining us, just go back and look at last week's description.  Jeez, I have to explain what's going on?  Again?!  This is like the first chapter of every Harry Potter book:
Harry stopped in front of a mirror. He immediately noticed his green eyes, lightning-shaped scar, and crazy hair he got from his parents who were supposed to be killed in a car accident but were actually wizards (or a witch and wizard, as some liked to say at Hogwarts, the magic school - cf. Durmstrang and Beauxbatons) who were killed by Voldemort -- a terrifying dark wizard who wanted to rule the world for no well-explained reason.
"Harry, why are you staring at the mirror?" Hermione said.  Hermione was an unusually bright girl who is described as unattractive, but really was.  Harry felt no romantic feelings for her at all in spite of the fact that he was a teenage boy and had "romantic feelings" about everyone around him, including several of the house elves (for more on house elves, see paragraphs 10, 18, and 35 below).
He thought about how awful it was they called her a "mudblood." A mudblood was a witch born of non-magical parents and the Death Eaters -- wizards who ate at McDonald's -- wanted to kill them all because...
Well, you get the point.

Okay, so that's not the point.  The point is I'm trying to be funnier, so I'm taking lessons from a book.  Specifically, Teach Yourself Comedy Writing by Jenny Roche.

Today's lesson:

Exercise 1
Okay, 20 is a bit too long for a blog post, so I'll stick to 10.  Also, the only written sketches I've seen are... Well, they're not funny.  So, I'm going to post sketches I do like (and link clips so you can share in my incredibly good taste).

Monty Python
Cheese Shop Sketch  There's no cheese, but he'll try to guess what they have for hours.
Fish Slapping Dance  Grown men whacking each other with halibut.
Four Yorkshiremen  "Kids have it good these days" with one-upmanship ad absurdum.
Undertaker  Slowly moving from a somber moment to an absurd proposition.
Eulogy for Graham Chapman (not a sketch, but perfect)  Humorously roasting the dead (see sketch above).

Steve Martin
The Love God  Giving dating advice when you know nothing about it.
Holiday Wish  A man making a smarmy holiday bit admits what he really wants out of life.

Miscellaneous
Irish Language Lab  Two jokes: (a) Irish is basically English and (b) the teacher loses his mind.
Boot to the Head  A martial arts expert slowly loses his patience with an annoying student.
Welcome to Hell  The Devil greets new damned souls to Hell, and divides them into groups.
Michaelangelo's Last Supper  Michaelangelo has absurd ideas of what makes a good religious painting.

Exercise 2
You know what?  I'll save this for next week.  I'm all tuckered out from linking sketches.

Hm.  Odd phrase, "tuckered out."  Can you be tuckered in?  Tuckered over?  Just tuckered with no preposition?

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Comedy Lessons Part 1


I've been working on this blog for eight years (at least, that's what it says on the title graphic).  After all that time, I've come to one, stark realization:

I'm not funny.


My most popular blog posts are either about serious issues (marginalization of women, gun control, Candy Crush) or had sexy pictures in them (mostly me in Speedos).  The point of this blog was to help me improve my humor writing, but after eight years of trying I have to accept I need help.

Enter Teach Yourself Comedy Writing.  It's a book that's been sitting on my shelf for years.  Like Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain and How to Create a New Identity, looking at it made me feel like I'd learned something without actually reading it.

I've decided to stop procrastinating and do the comedy lessons.  I'll share them with you here because you will find them humorous and illuminating.  Also because I can't think of anything else to post.

Here goes.

Lesson 1


Exercise 1:
I'm going to talk about things I own only.  I could make fun of a Salad Shooter, for example, but I don't have any experience with them.  Yeah, they sound silly, but how and in what way?
  1. Toilet AugerA long pole with a tube inside it you use to push clogs through your toilet. Essential when you have large children and small toilets.
  2. Range Hood
    Related to kitchen fires from poor chefs.
  3. Toolbox
    Mine is filled with more things than it can hold, most of which I've never used.  Anyone need a Torx screwdriver?
  4. Display Cabinet
    If you have kids, they're full of art supplies instead of... Well, what would you display, anyway?  Fine china? Crystal figurines?  Yeah, if you have kids those mysteriously disappear to be replaced with fragments of fine china and crystal figurines.
  5. Electric fake fireplace logs
    'Nuff said.
  6. George Foreman Grill
    They still sell those.  People still buy them.  Nobody uses them.
  7. Fitness equipment
    Adjustable dumbbells, stretchy bands, foam rollers, PVC tubes, boxing gloves and handwraps, Costco-sized boxes of Gatorade.  All covered by insurance.  All gathering dust.
  8. Flowers?
    There are funny flowers?  I heard of one called Phalaenopsis.  It looked like a penis.
  9. Foods?
    Hm.  We have almond and coconut flour.  They're masochistic replacements for normal flour.  Imagine eating chewy sand.
  10. Halloween candy
    You have to find a place to hide it from the kids so they don't eat it all at once.  You have to find a place to hide it from yourself, because eating your kids' candy is the definition of a bad parent.  Since nobody knows where the candy is, it gets lost for three years.  When you find it, it's hard as a rock and covered in green fuzz.  The kids won't eat it.  It's yours.
Exercise 2:  Famous people
I have two problems with making fun of public figures:  
  • don't keep up with popular culture.  Few things depress me more than People Magazine.  Who cares about the lives of actors or reality show participants?  More importantly, who cares so much they want candid shots of stars walking down the street in sweatpants and sunglasses?  I can understand looking at People at a doctor's office, but if you have a subscription, seek therapy.
  • I watched this impressive interview with John Cleese.  In it he was asked about the enduring popularity of Monty Python.  He pointed out Python didn't poke fun at contemporary figures, so it was still funny after decades.  He has a point; I'm sure jokes about Lilian Gish or President Taft were hysterical at the time, but who would get them now?
So, I'm going to skip Exercise 2.  I don't know enough about Kanye West or...  

Um...  

Vincent D'Onofrio?  Is he famous?  

See?  Not my thing.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Meme Career 3

Her: Hi, Matthew.
Me: Hi.
Her: How's the blog going?
Me: Not so good.  I can never find time to work on it.
Her: It's another meme week, isn't it?
Me: Sigh.









Friday, January 8, 2016

New Year's Jelly Bean Jar

Every year I post silly New Year's Resolutions.  I have real resolutions as well, but fake ones are more fun.  Nobody expects you to travel around the world in a hot air balloon or get elected president.
Seriously, don't keep that resolution.
I've decided to do resolutions differently this year.  I've decided to write them all down.
Write down my New Year's Resolutions!
Yay!  I'm done.

Okay, fine, I'm not done.  Here's my real list:
Fitness 
Finish things
  • Novel
  • Audiobook
  • Games
Stop arguing with idiots online
Yay!  I'm done.

Of course, I'm going to fail at them all because they're too vague.  Let's try that again:
Work out three times a week 
Work on the new novel every day until it's uploaded. 
Finish the audiobook for the old novel 
Finish games  
Finish Kingdom of Adventure 
Convert Flash games to HTML 5  
Learn Clickteam Fusion 
Create Bubbleoids 
Instead of arguing online, think of all the time you could spend being outside, spending time with your kids, cleaning the toilet, cutting off your ears with a dull knife or any of the more enjoyable activities there are in the world
It's better, but it's more likely that, come December, I'll shrug my shoulders, and give up.

I need accountability.  I need a penalty.  I need something like the Marital Jelly Bean Jar
The Marital Jelly Bean Jar is a way of ruining marriages fun game you play with your spouse.  When you're married, get an empty jar.  Put a jelly bean in the jar every time you have sex.  On your first anniversary, start taking a jelly bean out every time you have sex.  On your second anniversary you get a divorce you find out how much your sex life has diminished and can plot how long it will be until you get a divorce how your relationship matures from passion to sad regret companionship.

Ladies and Gentlemen: The Resolutions Jelly Bean Jar.

Every time I fail to do a regular resolution, I write a minimum of two sentences about why I failed. 

Two complete sentences.  It's like High School for willpower.

Anyone else want to try this?  Anyone want to go back to High School?  Come on, High School was fun, right?  No?

What if I threw in cheerleaders?
"N-E-W-Y-E-A-R speeeells resolutions you're probably going to break!"
Good.  See you all in 2017.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Meme Career 2

Continuing on in my career of I can't think of anything to blog so I'll do memes Meme Creator:



I'd explain them, but if I explained them, that would mean they weren't funny.

And THEY ARE FUNNY.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Daisy Ridley Nude

Once upon a time, there was a blogger named Matthew.

Matthew was intelligent, kind, creative, and more handsome than a Chippendale Dancers shower room.  However, he was sad because nobody was reading his blog anymore.  Actually, nobody ever read it, but his readership had dwindled to the point where only one person read it regularly (Hi Mom!).

Matthew hatched a clever plan.  He would go back to the dark, evil days when he wrote suggestive titles on his blog posts to drive up his readership.  He found the popular actress of the month and made a blog post suggesting he had nude pictures of her.

Actually, there were nude pictures of her on the internet, but he wouldn't stoop so low as to post them.  He'd only stoop so low as to pretend to post them.

Thousands of millions of people flocked to his page.  They found his post shockingly funny and discovered the rest of his blog.  Matthew became disturbingly famous (on top of being intelligent, creative, and handsome) and lived happily ever after.

The end.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

My Meme Career

After several years of posting to this blog regularly, one fact has become painfully clear to me: I'm never going to be famous from blogging.  Okay, okay, so most people realized blogs were a dead end a decade ago. I'm a slow learner.

I decided to become a famous novelist. Turns out there aren't many of them either.  I started a Twitter account and...

Well, you get the idea. My therapist says I should accept that I'll never be famous, so I fired her. I finally realized my humor works best in the short form.

The short form.
In other words, my humor comes best in quick bursts of unrefined funny.  My conclusion: make some memes.  Making a meme is fabulously easy.
  1. Get some random pictures
  2. Put your old Tweets on top of them
  3. Stick your blog address in the corner
  4. Profit
And so you have my first three attempts.






See? Comedy gold.

The big question now: where do I put all the money that's going to roll in?

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Hazardous Menorah


If you are familiar with Hannukah, you know tonight is the last night.  If you aren't familiar with Hannukah, where's that cave you've been living in for the last five thousand years?!  

Hannukah is everywhere in the United States: menorahs burning in every home, Hannukah songs in every store and restaurant, public buildings lit in blue and white, and long lines of kids waiting to sit in Judas Maccabeus's lap. 

Of course, there are is the War on Hannukah.  It's so stupid.  I mean, yes Rohatsu, Solstice, Mawlid el-Nabi, and Zarathosht Diso are important holidays, too, but they're religious holidays! Hannukah is an American holiday.  Everyone can join in, regardless of faith.  And, anyway, this country was founded on Jewish principles.
Jefferson: author of The Declaration of Independence and member of the Sons of Liberty Minyan.
Where was I?  Oh, right.

The symbol of Hannukah is the Menorah.  Every night, for eight nights, you light an additional candle (one the first night, two the next, and so on).  Getting 116 candles for a menorah every year is a pain.  Stores sell out quickly, so I grab candles whenever I can.

I came across these this year.

Hand dipped candles are a good write-off on your taxes.
I noticed something odd on the back:
Turns out trimming your wicks is important. BTW, does anyone know the number of a good firefighter?
See it?
Right there between "Don't be an idiot" and "Don't be a moron."
It says "Don't use a menorah that can catch fire."  Let's think about that for a moment.  Somewhere out there, someone built a flammable menorah.
"Great work, kids! Now we can have a fire drill!"
Somewhere out there, someone put candles on a flammable menorah and burned their house down.

"Honey, can you put this in the window?"
We all have unique ways to celebrate the holidays.  From now on, mine is to drive from house to house handing out menorahs made out of gasoline-soaked tinder.

"Happy Hannukah! Here, take this."

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Yiddish Erotica

The title brought you in, didn't it?  Same thing happened to me once in the late 80s.

A little background: I'm a heterosexual male, and I went through that awkward, hormonal, sexually-obsessed period of every heterosexual male's life we call:

Life.

Life, for us, begins around the age of eight, and continues until the age of dead.  As it progresses, it evolves from "Wow, girls are awesome! I wonder if I can see one naked." to "Wow, women are awesome! I wonder if one will ever talk to me." and finally to "Is this enough pornography for the weekend?"  As a gifted child, I reached that last stage earlier than most of my peers and remained there until-

The point is, I really needed pornography.  Unfortunately, my only way to get it was to go into a store, take a Playboy Magazine off the rack, bring it to the cashier, and leave it there, running out of the store in embarrassment.


In college, I figured I'd finally see pornography.  I wasn't disappointed.  Then I was disappointed.  Really, really disappointed.  Man, pornography is bad.

You have to understand what pornographic world was like before the internet.
 
BTW, Pornographic World is a parody of Jurassic World
Now you can, for example, search for "porn Indiana Jones" and get a dozen videos you can choose between.  Back then, you had to go to a video store and ask the person behind the counter for Indiana Joan and the Black Hole of Mammoo.

I didn't make that title up.  No!  Really.

Indiana Joan is a video where the eponymous Joan gets all "eponymous" with a bunch of guys dressed up as natives.  The plot is...

No, no there really was a plot.  This guy got killed and Joan gets captured and has sex.  That's about it.

The point is, there was dialogue.  I know, because a group of us watched the movie and after twenty minutes, we got bored and fast forwarded through the film, only stopping at the dialogue.
 
"Wait, did she say something?" "Nah, she just moaned."
I'd only been in college a year before I gave up on pornography.  Then I heard the local video store had a film called Yiddish Erotica.

Yiddish Erotica.  Say it with me: Yiddish Erotica.  Think about it Yiddish Erotica.  There was no way Yiddish Erotica could be bad.

Even if all they did was put yarmulkes on the stars.

Even if all they did was have one Jewish American Princess yell "Beige!  We'll paint the ceiling beige!" during sex.

Even if all they did was have one guy yell "OY!" as he came.

It would be enough.  There was no way it could be bad.  None.

A friend of mine (Let's call him "Ned," because that's his name.) drove with me to the video store.  The problem was, you had to get it from a cashier, which was a problem for me.

Imagine, if you will, a dark store lit only by fluorescent lights.  Stacks of videotapes are arranged in shelves around the room.  A bored, young woman with dark brown hair sits next to a cash register, reading a magazine.  I walk up to her.  I clear my throat.  She ignores me.  I try to think of what to say.  I get to "I... Uh... I was looking for..."

Ned says "We hear you have a movie called Yiddish Erotica."

Barely looking away from her magazine, she leans behind the counter, grabs a tape, and puts it on the counter for us.  We pay, and she goes back to her magazine.

Me: "Thank you."

Without looking up: "Have fun jerking off."

We head back to our dorm's common room to watch it.  (This was the 80s.  We didn't have the idea of NSFW, let alone "Don't turn on pornography in a public area.")

So, we put it in the VCR.  And we sat down.  And we watched it.  Aaaaaand wow.  Wow.  

I have never been that disappointed in my life.

Well, there was that one time...
The creators of Yiddish Erotica didn't know what "Yiddish" meant.

There were no yarmulkes.

There were no Jewish American Princesses talking about redecorating during sex.

There were no "oys."

Most of the men were uncircumcised.

It was just a bunch of random clips of stuck together and was edited to make it take longer.  For example, the first scene is of a tanned, muscular, uncircumcised blonde man having sex with a tanned, uncircumcised blonde woman.  The woman was wearing red shoes and, at one point, he takes her shoes off.  Three minutes later, he takes her shoes off again.  Three minutes later, he...

You get the point.  Yiddish Erotica is like the Book of Genesis if you replaced the part where God creates Eve twice with the place where God takes Eve's shoes off twice.

And so, once again, I gave up on pornography.  Well, until the internet came around and I found you could do a search and find "alien with eight penises has sex with a group of women wearing space suits."

No!  Really.

Friday, November 27, 2015

The Issue the Mainstream Media Wants You to Ignore

I like filling my mind with "thrash."
I'm sure you've seen memes like these before.


"Oh no!  Someone paid more attention to things I don't care about than things I really care about!"  Can you feel the righteous indignation?  Can you feel the sanctimonious bullshit?


By the way, I'm using these images without permission or attribution because fuck these guys.  Fuck these guys who think you're stupid for caring about what you care about.  Fuck these people who call you "sheeple" for enjoying life.

You want to know about what really matters?  You want to know the issue you should really care about?
This is a rock.
BAM! Up yours, stupid meme guys!
What, you don't get it?

This rock is just like an uncountable number of other rocks, perhaps trillions.  You could count rocks all day, program satellites to circle the Earth, counting them, but you'd likely never find them all.  Even if you did, it would take decades.

BAM! Up yo-
Still don't get it?

This is an asteroid, a rock floating in space.
BAM!
No?

There are about 150 million asteroids in our solar system.  Up  million of those asteroids are one to two kilometers long.
BA-
Still don't get it?  Really?  Wake up!  Stop filling your mind with "thrash!"

Of those millions of asteroids, there are some (we aren't sure how many, but certainly thousands) over sixty kilometers across.  Sixty kilometers is big enough to wipe out all life on Earth.

BAM!  Literally.
If we were to have advanced warning, we could do something about it.  We could build and send up a rocket to push the asteroid out of the way.  You wouldn't even need to push it that far.  A one degree change in direction would make it miss the Earth.

Of course, you'd need a lot of advanced warning.  The farther away the asteroid is, the less you'd have to push it.

Advanced warning requires a system to find the big asteroids heading towards us.

We don't have an advanced warning system.  We barely even started one.  We're behind our goal of tracking 10% of a third of all the asteroids by 2020 because of budget cutbacks.

Budget cutbacks.  We haven't found even 10% of a third of the dangers to all life on Earth and our government is more worried about everything else.

Does that scare you?  No?  Here's an asteroid that nearly hit us this year that's big enough to have its own moon.


Here's an asteroid that nearly hit us we didn't see coming.

Here's a tiny one we weren't aware of until it blew up a piece of Russia and injured 1,500 people.



So, go ahead.  Get pissed off that the stupid people around you don't seem to care about the environment, or healthcare, or the plight of homeless veterans.  But imagine this, first:

We've solved every problem.  Every endangered animal is saved.  Global warming is over.  Every poor child has enough food and healthcare and opportunities.  Our veterans are cared for.  We're just signing a pact that will guarantee world peace...

But just as it's signed, before the ink is dry, just as the last signature is signed and the pen is about to leave the page...

An asteroid hits the Earth.

An asteroid bigger than the one that wiped out the dinosaurs.

The atmosphere ignites.  Everyone dies in a few minutes.  Every animal dies.  Every microbe dies.  Every trace of human civilization is blasted into dust.

We were so caught up in fixing Earth's problems, we didn't see it coming.  All those problems we fixed?  None of it mattered.  None of it.  We're all gone.  Everything we ever did was gone.  The only memory of humanity are a few satellites and probes and ancient television signals radiating out into space.

The real problem you aren't paying attention to?

Please.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The War on Christmas in November

Here, a turkey begs to be killed on time.

I think we're all clear on the whole "Matthew hates Christmas" thing.  I've discussed it at length.


I realize the rest of you love Christmas sales, Christmas parties, Christmas displays, Christmas sales at Thanksgiving, Christmas Music, Christmas sales at Halloween, Christmas music in September...

Oh, wait, what's that?  Is that a grumble of discontent?

My people!  You have not forsaken me.  After all these years of waiting, plotting, and explaining my activities to the Department of Homeland Security, I can reveal my plans.  We can begin the real war on Christmas.  The War to Keep Christmas in December.

The key to our success is to fight with music.  Christmas songs are humanity's vilest creations (unless you count the mullet).  Some of you will claim to like Christmas songs, but the third time you hear Paul McCartney's "A Wonderful Christmas Time" in a row, you'll be ready to join the army.
The soundtrack in Hell
How do we counter Christmas music? Thanksgiving Music.  Someone needs to create enough catchy Thanksgiving music to keep Christmas at bay.  That's the problem, though.  Everybody wants to make a Christmas song; Christmas is about families and togetherness and about the birth of Christianity's savior.  Nobody wants to write a Thanksgiving song; Thanksgiving is about gluttony and the Native American genocide.

The easy answer is to re-purpose existing holiday songs.  Some examples:

Channukah (or however we're spelling that holiday this year)
Turkey, turkey, turkey, I made you out of meat.
And when you're cold and yucky, I will go reheat.

Fourth of July
Oh say, can you see, by the kitchen timer's light
What so proudly we hail as the turkey's last gleaming?

Christmas
I'm dreaming of a dead turkey, just like the ones I used to roast
Where there is no worry and children don't hurry to watch their marshmallows toast.

Halloween
I was working in the kitchen, late one night, when my eyes beheld an awesome sight
My turkey from its pan began to rise, and suddenly (to my surprise) it did the mash
It did the potato mash...


Okay, so music isn't my strong suit.  One of you will have to do some minor work in fleshing those out into billboard-topping songs.  If you don't, it's your fault if you'll be hearing Paul McCartney singing about Christmas in August next year.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Email Time Capsule



I received the strangest email last week:

In the fall of 2005, you sent a letter to the future via an "Email Time Capsule" created by Forbes.com. Ten years later, we're happy to deliver the message. For more information, please visit http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidewalt/2015/10/26/forbes-email-time-capsule-future

I sent myself an email just to say "hi!"  I'm so considerate.

Yes.  Yes you are.

Why thank you, me!

No, thank you.

I decided I'd email back (as soon as Forbes creates a reverse time capsule).  Here's my email with my responses.

Your son is on the floor playing with the headphones from your wife's iPOD.
Oh, yeah.  iPods.  I remember those!  I thought people would get bored of them and feel stupid for wasting their money.  Then Apple invented iPhones, and I thought people would get bored of them and feel stupid for wasting their money.  Then they invented iPads, and I thought people would get bored of them and feel stupid for wasting their money.

Now they have the iWatch.  People will get bored with them.  They'll feel stupid for spending their

You should buy Apple stock.

You have to poop.
That's amazing!  Me too!  Some things never change.

Nancy should be here in an hour and a half, and you've just finished cleaning up a little.
Our first babysitter!  She was a pastry chef.  I liked her.  We've had several sitters:
  • Viviana, who also worked for Sheryl Sandberg along with three other nannies.  Seems Sandberg doesn't like being around her kids.
  • Jackie, who always dressed well.
  • Colleen, who (on her last day) bought your kids giant boxes of Whoppers and helped hide them.
  • Danuta, your real estate agent.
  • Marcellina who brought her daughter with her.

Perhaps Calvin could stop by and distract him for a while.
We still see them.

I wish you could reply to this message and send it back in time.  Wouldn't that be cool?
Me too!  I'd tell you to buy Apple stock.

While you're at it, tell Steve Jobs you can't cure cancer with vitamins and meditation.

Not sure what to say.
That's changed.  Now the opposite is true.

Are you moving to Chicago?
Yeah, we did that.  Lasted under a year.  Winter came and your wife stepped outside for three minutes and screamed "Wow!  I didn't expect that!"  Then you spent an hour chipping the ice off her face with an awl.

Will your career ever start up again?
Nope.

Will anything come of your playing with Flash?
Even more nope.  Flash was killed by Steve Jobs.  Seems Flash returned the favor.

Learning French?
Even more even more nope.  Those five years of your life were wasted, much like your first marriage.

Writing?
Writing!  Yeah!  You published a novel. Well, you self-published a novel. Well, you electronically self-publish a novel, which means you clicked a button labelled "upload."

Short answer: not much.

Screenwriting?
Aaaaand we're back in Nopeland.

Drawing?
You know that sketchbook you started in 2001?  You haven't filled it.

Does Nip/Tuck get any better?
Yes.  No. Yes.  Yes.  No.  Depends on the season.  Basically, the ones with Rosie O'Donnell in them are good.

Oh!  Rosie marries her girlfriend!  Homosexuals can legally marry each other and everyone's okay with it.  Well, everyone but the occasional whackjob clerk in Podunk Nowhere.

Cool, no?  Weird, but cool.

Hope things are well.

You too.  Catch you later, bro.  Er, me-o?  Moe?

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

There's a Hole in the Bucket...


My blog is unpopular
dear Liza, dear Liza.
So not liked.

Do memes
dear Henry, dear Henry.
So quick.

But my art software's ancient
dear Liza, dear Liza.
Bought it '01.

Then upgrade
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Buy new.

I'd need a new laptop
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
Maybe Ultrabook.

Then buy one
dear Henry, dear Henry.
It's cheap.

I'd have to upgrade Flash
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
And I'm too cheap.

No one uses Flash
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Obsolete.

But my Flash game's not done
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
Pre-alpha.

Then finish it
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Get it done.

But my novel comes first
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
Pulitzer.

Then finish it
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Bargain bin.

But my blog takes my time
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
Once a week.

I mentioned memes
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Stupid memes.

You are no help
dear Liza, dear Liza. 
None at all.

Because you're a moron
dear Henry, dear Henry.
Shoulda married the banker.


 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

14th Anniversary Gift Ideas


Here's the problem with marriage...

No, wait, that's too sweeping a statement.  There's no one problem; there's dozens of problems, ranging from "What's wrong with me checking out other girls? OW! Stop hitting me." to "I can't believe we're still married after thirty years.  OW!  Stop hitting me."

This post is about one specific marital problem.  One specific minor marital problem.  One specific minor problem you wouldn't think was a problem until it bit you in the ass (Literally. I accidentally sat on the dog).

The problem is anniversary gifts.

For those of you who haven't married yet: Run away!  Get a vasectomy!  Move to- Oh, hi honey!  No, I'm just working on the blog.  Have a good day at work.  Love you, too!

Every year, you're expected to give your spouse a gift (as if you aren't enough of a gift already)! And you're not only expected to buy gifts; you're expected to buy specific types of gifts.

Year
Gift
Suggestion
1
Paper
Divorce agreement
2
Cotton
Natural fiber rope conveniently tied into a noose
3
Leather
Whips, padded handcuffs, masks
4
Fruit
Um, fruit?
5
Wood
Wink wink
6
Iron
Anvil
7
Wool
A Kindle preloaded with a Hugh Howey novel
8
Pottery
Barn
9
Willow
A horrible Lucas film about a magical dwarf
10
Aluminum
Reynolds Wrap
11
Steel
Dueling swords
12
Silk
Make Your Own Silk kit (aka a box of worms)
13
Lace
Sexy undies.  Maybe a doily.  No, has to be undies
14
Ivory
The tooth bone hacked off an endangered animal
15
Crystal
DVD set of "Wings, the Complete Series"
20
China
Dinner at a sushi restaurant
25
Silver
Bullets
50
Gold
Anything Glenn Beck sells
60
Diamond
A piece of coal with the note: "Squeeze this."
100
Blood
Because you're both vampires or zombies at this point

A problem arises on year 14; the traditional gift is ivory.  Ivory poaching kills 50,000 elephants a year, so gift industry suggests you give gold instead.  Gold is already the 30th anniversary present, but so few couples make it that jewelers were screaming "Goddamnit someone has to buy all the yellow rocks we dug out of the ground!"

Gold, however, is boring.  Jewelry is boring.  If you want to really impress your spouse of fourteen years, give the gift of soap.

Get it?  Ivory anniversary.  Soap.  Ivory soap.
It reminds me of you.
Imagine it.  You give your wife a beautifully wrapped gift, she opens it, and it turns out to be a bar of soap.  She looks up at you quizzically and you say "You smell bad."

Okay, it doesn't exactly ooze romance, but you can improve your chances of getting some making your spouse happy by carving it into a funny shape.

No, I don't mean that shape.  Pervert.  I mean something like this:

The Ivory elephant.  Ivorelephant?  We'll work on the name later.
The point is you can turn a cheap, disappointing gift into a personal cheap, disappointing gift.  All you need is a knife, determination, and more than a little contempt for the institution of marriage.

You may notice my ivorelephant has no tusks.  I left them off as a symbolic condemnation of ivory poaching, and because Ivory soap is soft and they fell off.  You have to whittle carefully to make sure your ivorelephant doesn't turn into an ivodecapitatedelephant or an ivorockshapedlikeapenis.

Here's what you'll need to make your own:
  • An excuse for being in the bathroom for an hour
    I suggest "Honey, I'm having diarrhea.  I'll be awhile."  I can guarantee your spouse won't ask probing questions.
  • A knife
    You'll need one that's sharp enough to cut cleanly but not enough to slice your finger open.  Try those expensive steak knives your father-in-law gave you that you've been secretly using to open Amazon packages.
  • A cloth napkin
    The soap shavings go everywhere.
  • An extra bar of soap
    Ivory is wrapped in paper that sticks to the soap and then a layer of cellophane.  Sometimes it makes a mess of the soap when you open it.  Fortunately, Ivory comes in three packs.


Good luck.  I can guarantee your spouse will be speechless.  Trust me, after a few years of marriage, silence is something you'll desperately want Oh, no dear.  I'm finished with my blog.  I can help with dinner.