Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Mo Money. No Problem. or Youth is Wasted on the Young

As I sit here at the end of my bed typing this, I’m being bitten on my legs by a mosquito which I can swear is giving off the faint sounds of insect laughter while buzzing nonchalantly around my room, as if it is checking it out to see if it (or me) is worth renting for the night. My minor itching and feelings of helplessness makes me long to experience just a bit of the carefree existence of my youth, or at least the temporary moments of childhood enthusiasm I used to have for the kind of things that would barely register with me as an adult.

Remember the feeling you would get when you saw your report card in the mail, well the Publisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes and the American Family Publishers envelopes gave me the exact opposite feeling and was the closest thing to a “Ralphie” from “A Christmas Story” moment that I would enjoy. I’ve actually in my 30’s recently rediscovered the chocolate malt-goodness of rich, creamy Ovaltine and have incorporated it into my nighttime pre-sleep routine. Usually after I have given up trying to kick the dog off the bed and am finished with watching late night sit-coms, sports highlights and porn(in no particular order).

I can see Ed McMahon now looking up at me from the thick manila envelope, as I bring it into my home’s all white living room to get down to business. Now, my house was the house that every kid hung out at in the neighborhood and my den was where we played, ate, watched TV, caused mild mischief, the occasional ruckus and basically lived in after school. Right next to it was the room with white carpeting and a white couch, which was my parents way of designing a room that would not only show couch stains but footprints as well, which is why we rarely went in there. It was hardly a lived-in room, not much fun to be in and since my mom basically let us turn the den into the neighborhood playground, we obliged her request to avoid the white room(although I don’t remember her spending much time there either).

After tearing open the Publisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes envelope, I would carefully go through it and look at all the possible prizes I would be winning. I’m not sure what I thought I would be doing at eleven years old with a 30 ft. yacht in the New Jersey suburbs, but I was pretty sure I would probably be taking it out to the Caribbean with either Heather Locklear or Heather Thomas(1) during my winter break. I remember there were different prize choices and the envelopes contained these golden seals that I would carefully place on the prize packages I wanted while plotting what I would do with my inevitable winnings. It definitely gave off a “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” golden ticket vibe. Only, I didn’t grow up in a hovel with both sets of bedridden grandparents(God, Charlie really did deserve that chocolate factory for all the bed pans he must have removed), I grew up in a spacious suburban home on the nicest block in the nicest small town in Bergen County, NJ.

As I closed the mailbox and walked back into the house, I knew it was just a matter of time before I saw Ed McMahon or whoever gets sent to hand me my oversized poster board check and inform me of the fabulous prizes and vacation get-aways that I have won. It just seemed logical that I would be winning some prizes since I did everything in the instructions and mailed back the envelope in a timely manner. Of course I would share it with my mom and dad, who even though divorced had managed to keep me living the good life in the house I grew up in (not that I realized what a gift that was at the time). I’d get my kid sister a new ET doll. Apparently, someone ripped the stuffing out of the old one and told her that it “went home”. My older bother would get a new humidifier to keep his room from smelling like an eight grade gym locker room. Most of the money and prizes would be for me to enjoy and to share with my friends, so they would know how cool and generous I truly was.

Unfortunately, I never did hear back from the people at the Publisher’s Clearing House, which probably was a good thing, because too much of a good thing at a young age can be a bad thing (I think Yogi Berra might have said that once.). Although, what made filling out those sweepstakes forms so fun was in believing that I was definitely going to win if I followed the proper steps, which is somewhat of a model for adult life. I might be sitting in a tiny apartment talking to my dog while rubbing calamine lotion on my legs, but if I keep on writing and doing what I do best, I’ll one day be sitting in a large house, smiling at my wife while begging her to rub calamine lotion on my legs.

1. In case you are reading this and are under the age of thirty-five, you may not remember that almost every twelve year old boy in the early 80’s had swimsuit posters on their wall of either Heather Locklear, Heather Thomas or Christie Brinkley. Christie Brinkley jumping into the pool in the film “Vacation” will forever be embedded in my mind. Now, Heather Locklear and Heather Thomas were the two blondes that simultaneously starred on TV shows at the same time. Heather Thomas was on “The Fall Guy” with Lee Majors, formerly the Six-Million Dollar Man, and had amazing blonde wavy 80’s hair and a body like the woman in the “Hot for Teacher” video. Heather Locklear was on T.J. Hooker with William Shatner, of Capt. Kirk fame, and had blonde wavy 80’s hair and a smile that made you think she was the sweetest woman in the world (this is pre-Tommy Lee). The Heathers' posters made the walls of many a 13 year old boy much cooler to be in. I had no posters on my wall which led me to being a late bloomer until I started getting the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue at 14.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Finkle Got Fingered or Never Drink And Write

Sometimes when I go out for drinks without eating dinner, I don’t get my usual mellow buzz from the Capt. and ginger ale’s that normally sustain me throughout the night. Instead, the alcohol goes straight to my head and after a few drinks I feel it in my stomach, which is rare for me. Ever since I stopped drinking Jack and coke’s years ago I hardly ever get hung over anymore. But tonight I realized the perfect cure for a hangover, when I came home with my stomach rumbling as if I had a little Capt. Morgan pirate poking me from inside my belly while shouting “aaargggh, let me out you scrawny Jew boy”(1)
Luckily, I turned on HBO and “Freddie Got Fingered” happened to be playing. Within five minutes of first hearing Tom Green's voice, I was running into the bathroom. After another five minutes of facing the bowl on my knees before emptying my stomach, I splashed water on my forehead, brushed my teeth and noticed that the coloring was starting to come back into my face. After a few Tums, I was feeling back to normal and the headaches had completely subsided. I would have slept like a baby too, if not for Tom Green appearing in my dreams with an umbilical chord taped to his belly button, chasing me around his house and shouting at me to eat his cheese sandwich.

(1) I have not done the proper research to validate whether or not pirates have showed any anti-Semitism in the past. I just figured if you’re living on the high seas in the Middle Ages and you enjoy raping, pillaging, and plundering, you probably don’t encounter too many Jews. Historically, Jews only spend long periods of time in ships unless they are shaped like an arc or they offer some form of shuffleboard on the lido deck. So, I want to reiterate that I did not want to offend the descendants of pirates, I just made the general assumption that there would have been more than a few Jewish jokes told on those ships, especially while the pirates were counting the gold that they stole while raping, pillaging and plundering.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Ma Ma Se, Ma Ma Sa, Ma Ma Coo Whaaa?

I know that I should wait a few days before saying this but somewhere in Heaven there is a luminously beautiful blonde angel named Farrah who is wearing a red bathing suit, sitting on a cloud and is saying "What the hell?" Are you kidding me? I can't even get top billing today? I fought bravely against a long, excruciating emtionally and physically painful illness. And to make matters worse, I take Ryan Freakin O'Neal back as a way of creating the ultimate "Love Story" ending for my life and now when people think of June 25, 2009, all they will ever think about is Michael Jackson." To which Ed McMahon puts down his drink, lets out a big laugh and tells her "Hey, I just became a third banana. Hereeeeeeeeee's Michael!"

As for Michael Jackson, I'm sure most people will think of him the way he was when he was the most dynamic child performer of all-time and his early Off The Wall/Thriller years. As opposed to his later freakish physical transformation and his exposing of his emotionally stunted/warped personality to the public while spending a "Dangerous" amount of time with young boys, before deciding to pay a woman to have some for him. As with any acclaimed singer who dies before their time, it is always the music that lives on.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Gullible’s Travels or Say it Ain’t Sosa

I heard the news on TV tonight that Sammy Sosa did indeed take steroids. I was left in stunned, disbelief and I could feel a lump in my throat when I went outside and noticed for the first time that the moon was actually not made of cheese. Luckily, I wandered into a bar to get a drink when these women came up to me and were being really friendly, one even sat on my lap. After the dangerously titled song “Pour Some Sugar on Me” ended (I can't imagine the bee stings one would be asking for by walking through the park while covered in sugar), all three ladies were so enthralled by the details of my job as a media sales assistant that they offered to take me to a private room that they promised would provide a more intimate setting for the four of us to get to know each other better.

As I looked into my wallet, I noticed that I only had one dollar in it and before I lifted my head back up, my new friends had left my side like mice when the lights get turned on. Something seemed weird about this place and I began to think that maybe these women weren’t putting themselves through dental school by working there at night(you would think that dental students wouldn't be missing any teeth of their own). I got up and left and decided to walk back to my apartment. As I reached my street a slovenly dressed man was sitting on the pavement next to my corner grocery store. After I went to the ATM in the store, I handed the man precisely the seven dollars and eighty-one cents he had asked for. As I walked away I was comforted in knowing that he would indeed be warming his stomach with a shrimp salad sandwich at the diner down the block.

After tossing and turning in bed that night, I felt the need to put on my Sosa jersey one more time. How could a man who had hit so many home runs decide to use steroids all of sudden at the twilight of his career? It didn’t add up. I felt confused and somewhat betrayed, just like the time I had a blind date and she felt my face in the crowded restaurant before slapping it and pretending to be married(she refused to admit that she knew our mutual friend Sally). I awoke at 4 am to the sound of the buzzer going off in my apartment. I stumbled over to the intercom and pressed the button asking who it was. The man shouted “Sammy Fucking Sosa. Now, let me in, I forgot my keys.”

After buzzing in Mr. Sosa, I couldn’t believe that he had lived in my building and I had never seen him. You would think he could afford to at least live in a doorman building. The temptation was too much for me and I had to peer through the peep hole as I heard his foot steps getting closer. It kind of reminded me of waiting for Santa to arrive down my chimney, except Santa never stopped on the fourth floor of an apartment to pee out a window before yelling at his roommate to open the door. After witnessing this disgusting behavior and hearing the vulgarity that spewed out of his mouth, I felt like a fool for ever taking pride in being his fan. My only consolation was that I didn’t live next to Barry Bonds.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A Moment of Wonder

I woke up this morning and saw Zac Efron's face in the mirror and freaked out thinking I was a teenager again. I had thoughts of living in my mom’s house, feeling nervous around girls and driving a Buick Skyhawk to school. After I splashed water on my face I noticed that it began to look more like Mathew Perry's and I started to cry thinking I had been transported ten years into the future and had gotten too old to marry the girl next door and get my career off the ground. Finally, as I wiped away the tears and shook my head, the image blended back into that of my own. I relaxed and smiled, knowing that the past was behind me and the future lay ahead; knowing that I was still me, Fred Savage.

The Brooklyn Bodegas can really shoot or I got a cramp in my footnote

I just read the New Jersey Nets are going to redesign their arena in Brooklyn to "evoke Brooklyn like never before", which I can only assume means that the building will be a giant bodega, and instead of hotdogs and beer, they will be selling queso cheese and weed. I would also presume that the players will now have to grow scruffy beards and in the place of headbands on their heads they will have DJ style headphones hung around their necks that serve no purpose.(1)

1. I debated whether to go with the old Italian John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever/any Danny Aiello role ever stereotype, or the current young hipster stereotype. Since I have encountered much more of the latter over the past decade working in film production and my current job, as well as living in the all-Dominican Sunset Park, Brooklyn, I chose hipster. I’m sure in a future blog I’ll be an equal opportunity ragger(not sure if that’s a word) and rag on the hipster’s mortal enemy, the young preppy guy that moved straight from the NJ suburbs into a doorman building in Murray Hill(in Manhattan) where he proceeds to exemplify deuchebaggery(definitely should be a word) by popping his polo shirt collar before eating at Pinkberry and heading out to really cheesy bars that play music from before they were born, because they know that their girls just wanna have fun.

I,as most people are, am somewhere in between hipster and preppy and since I remember the 80’s, 90’s and today, have learned to enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle. As a single man in his 30’s, this involves meeting women without having to ever play beer pong, learning to appreciate weekend naps almost as much football and of course writing the world’s longest footnote.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I'll have a Mocha Frappucino with soy milk and some fabric softener, please.

Today I had a very Harvey Pekaresque epiphany while putting myself through the hopefully rare trauma of going to a NYC laundromat at 3 pm on a Wednesday. I realized that the only difference between people who regularly do laundry during the daytime and whose minds have become used to this 2 hours you’ll never get back, “time to make the donuts” weekly routine and the people who seem to hang out leisurely at the Starbucks next door long after their coffee is enjoyed, is a laptop and a liberal arts degree(although in this economy it might just be the laptop). I am not going to expand on the profundity of this statement as any more in-depth analysis will just expose my University of Arizona education.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Def-Con 5 or It's Always Darkest Before the Dawn.

I just learned that Visa is everywhere you want to be, except if you want to use it to pay off your Con Edison bill, then you are in the dark which is where no one wants to be. Apparently, the good people at Con Edison don’t take credit cards to pay their bills, but the credit service they use that charges you a fee does, except they only take Mastercard, Discover Card and Diner’s Club.

How can the energy company not take credit cards as payments, when the cable company even does? Anytime the cable company appears more customer friendly than you, something is seriously wrong. We’re talking about the industry that randomly decided that access to the internet should add about $40 to your monthly bill, even though all they are doing is providing access to it, they are not coming up with the sites or services on the internet. This is like paying a $40 dollar fee to enter the mall on a Saturday and then go to the food court and stores and pony up whatever it costs for jeans, shoes and chocolate covered pretzels.

Every once in a while a financial emergency will occur where you will not be able to access your bank account and need to use your credit cards. Who cares that I used my Visa card to buy a cool new pair of jeans and got a good deal on shirts at Express for Men if I won’t be able to see what they look like at home after my lights are turned off. The reason Con Edison is able to do this is that even more than the cable companies, they have absolutely no competition. I would rather hear that there was no way to use a credit card at all, than have them refer me to a credit agency , wait on hold for ten minutes and have a guy tell me that they don’t take my American Express or my Visa card. Of course the guy dealing with customers has heard thousands of people have a “Me,Myself & Irene” kiniption, in which the drum beats go off in your head, so there’s almost no point in having one, except to let out much needed frustration, in which case the guy will call you sir and politely and calmly let you know you’re screwed.

The thing that will set off the kiniption in anyone who has ever had this experience is hearing something ridiculous like “well, we do take Discover Cards and Diner’s Club Cards sir”. First of all, taking only Discover Cards and Diner’s Clubs cards is the equivalent to going to a supermarket or neighborhood deli and only seeing Mr. Pibb’s and Tabs available.
So, long blog short, I’m going to try and get one more extension or maybe sell my body until I can get the money into my bank account and pay off the bill. I might be writing my next blog at night by candle light, or I can just get a Diner’s Club card and live in restaurants, which might work for dates but women would eventually wonder why I always want to sleep at their place.

5 is the evilest number.

I picked my five top dictators of the day on Facebook and went with Hitler( I'd never be allowed in temple again if I left him off), Napolean(you gotta respect someone whose name became a psychological disorder), Ghengis Khan(hello, his name inspired Star Trek's Khaaaaaan), Idi Amin(so warped(1) he was rumored to have eaten people) and finally, I went with the surprise top choice of Oliver Cromwell.

Cromwell had panache(and a set of iron balls). After he died and Charles II was re-established as King, they dug up Cromwell’s body after a year and hung and drawn and quartered his long dead corpse. Now that is how a dictator is supposed to go. You’re so despised that they dig up your body and kill you twice.

Stay tuned for my Facebook top five Clog Dancing troupes.

1. As a copywrite by day, I just couldn't bring myself to write the tempting Amin/mean pun.

A weed grows in the Garden State or Reality TV Bites

I just saw a link on Facebook to an article in Gawker.com about the First Housewives of New Jersey’s Danielle Staub. You know it's not a flattering article when the opening line labels you a former "coke whore". First of all, shouldn't the emphasis be on the "former" instead of coke whore, as in Danielle Staub, the woman that failed at being a succesful coke whore and then moved to New Jersey to to end up personifying an extra from a Sopranos episode.
Anyone who knows anything about this country knows that Florida leads the nation in “former” coke whores and “current” strippers. New Jersey leads the nation in producing actors, comedians, one iconic rock star, one average hair band(1) that somehow stayed popular years after the grunge era hit, and people who grew up to realize the universal truth that no town needs three malls.

1. I think it’s safe to say that more people who read this will be offended by the fact that I referred to Bon Jovi as an average hair band than the fact that I referred to a housewife as a coke whore.

Monday, June 8, 2009

She's my lady.

Another night goes by and as the light bounces off the brick wall outside my apartment window I awaken to the fact that I am alone. I can still feel the imprint she left on her side of the mattress. It’s only been a week but I’ve yet to remove the strands of hair that I continue to find on my comforter, which I guess gives me a false sense of comfort, as if she was still here with me. Living alone when you’re used to being alone is a normal feeling; you go about your day, you look at web sites while bored at work, you meet friends for dinner, you come home, send text messages while watching TV and then do it all again the next day.

When I came home from work to the empty apartment I started to call out her name before stopping myself, which is when I realized that I was just me again, and that I had to get used to being me, and not me and her. That was a shock to my already wounded psyche. After the first two days without her, even little things like taking a shower and not having her in the bathroom there with me, reminded me of how much time we actually spent together. After five days of her being gone, I found myself doing some of the things we used to do. I even took a stroll through the park alone, which replaced the feeling of loneliness with a feeling that I was becoming pathetic. Before her I used to do whatever I wanted to, whenever I wanted to. I could go out with my friends drinking after work and stay out until four in the morning.

What the hell is wrong with me? Why does my happiness depend on her? Do you think she is feeling sad because she’s not with me right now? She’s probably having the god damn time of her life and I’m following other couples down the street and reminiscing about us. I can’t believe I’ve become so dependant on cohabitating with her. I mean she’s not that perfect and alot of times I feel like she doesn't even listen to me when I talk to her.

The really sad thing is that she hasn’t even left me for good, she’s just on vacation. I can’t believe how much I fell to pieces after a one-week separation. Next time my sister asks to take Lady away to her house in the country, I might have to go with them. God, I need a girlfriend.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Love yourself, within reason.

Here is a horrible dilemna, that I hope very few people will have to ponder in their life. What would you rather find out about a family member, that they committed suicide in a hotel room in Thailand, or that they were found hung in a Bangcock hotel room’s closet after attempting autoerotic asphyxiation? I don’t think anyone should be surprised that David Carradine's death was not a suicide, as it was initially reported. It doesn't take a CSI team to realize that any man who is found in a hotel room in Bangcock with rope around his genitals is not exactly listening to a Smiths album and wallowing in misery. As David Caruso or any partner of Sarah Marshall might say "Atleast he still had the Kung-Fu grip".

I feel the need to say that I am a big fan of David Carradine as an actor as he had an on-screen persona which seemed to transcend the screen. He seemed to be one of those people that you would want to grab a beer with and listen to his stories about his life and career. The kind of guy that seemed to truly live life and not just walk the Earth(no pun intended-mostly). His death left me thinking about some things, like the appeal of autoerotic asphyxiation. I understand sexual kinks and the psychological need that certain people have to get off in different ways (as opposed to the norm of meeting a woman at a cheesy bar after reluctantly singing along to “We Built This City”, only to get her back to your fifth floor apartment and having her grind on you for an hour before she passes out and you realize that you need a new pair of jeans.)
Autoerotic asphyxiation. Even the name sounds scary (yet somewhat badass) but anything you do that involves asphyxiation, by definition, can not be too good for you. The point of this is to tie something around your neck and limit the oxygen to your brain as you are about to orgasm. And I assume to get that extra special feeling you tie a rope around your balls. I don’t know what’s crazier, cutting off the oxygen to your brain or to your testicles(imagine wearing a 5 year old’s tightie whities). The impressive/amazing thing about this story is that David Carradine was 72 years old. Shouldn't you just be glad you still have enough prostate to masterbate and have regular, non-testing your body's limits-sex at that age. Hell, I'm 38 and all I need to do to break my window when I orgasm is to go three weeks without masterbating. Any adult male whose ever gone three weeks or longer without masterbating(probably due to an injury resulting in a lower body cast), will know that you become so sensitive that your hand will feel like the inside of a vagina.

The most shocking part of this story was the fact that David Carradine was reportedly found in the closet. This means he was so into trying to pull off this act that he used the bar in the closet to tie the rope to and was not even able to watch any porn while he was polishing the bishop. I can imagine him suspended in the air standing on a chair while wearing a homemade nutcracker, before realizing he was not able to see the movie he had ordered in his hotel room(I’m guessing something with a local theme like “One Night In Bangcock”). If he’s going for the ultimate masterbatory experience and did not involve porn in any way then he truly had reached the ultimate level of spiritual power like his character in "Kung-Fu: The Series". I guess the moral of this story(if there is a moral) is that autoerotic asphyxiation, like bench pressing 100 pounds over your body weight, should only be attempted with a spotter(make that a team of highly trained spotters).

Movies for Guys Who Don’t Like Books

AMC stands for American Movie Classics but I think it’s time to finally drop the classics from their name and call it the American Movie Channel, or better yet, go with MTDCS(Movies That Don’t Completely Suck) as in “Hey honey, True Lies is on AMC now, that’s a movie that doesn’t completely suck”. “True Lies” is a pretty enjoyable movie, but no movie with Tom Arnold in it, especially a film that has him playing an FBI agent, could ever be considered a classic(one great Jamie Lee Curtis dancing on a stripper pole scene does not a classic make). The closest thing they have been airing lately to a classic on this channel is the film “Roadhouse”.
Patrick Swayze must have told his agent after Dirty Dancing to find him the exact opposite movie role. The only one being put in a corner during this flick is a redneck that is thrown there by Sam Elliott. It’s definitely a movie for guys who like movies with implausible plots, although it lacks the memorable dialogue of another bad-ass cult film “They Live”, which has pro-wrestler “Rowdy” Roddy Piper uttering the legendary phrase “ I have come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass: and I’m all out of bubble gum”. This line is a favorite of many men who were teens in the 80’s (although I was probably quoting “Weird Science” at the time, which is a whole other blog)
As I write this “Die Hard 2” is currently playing on AMC, and further proving my lack of classics theory, considering I barely remember any part of that movie, except for the fact that it took place at an airport and Bruce Willis blew a lot of shit up while saving his wife again (no wonder they were divorced by the next film, he was driven to alcoholism while coping with the severe back pain he must have endured from falling off skyscrapers and planes every 2 years). Before I write an eighth grade book report on how the original “Die Hard” spawned every generic action movie that followed it, I’ll just say that Alan Rickman’s performance in “Die Hard” was indeed AMC worthy as opposed to Charlton Heston’s performance in “True Lies” which was NRA worthy. I once had an idea for a movie that should never have aired on a station called American Movie Classics. It was called “Die Hard Jew: Again With the Dying” and would definitely be worthy of a station for movies that don’t completely suck.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Gali G. WTF is going on or Gay Germans can’t fly.

I'm pretty sure that Eminem suffered a relapse after Sasha Baron Cohen landed ass first on his face at the MTV Movie Awards and stormed out of the auditorium to down a bottle of Klonopin, or hallucinate on Mescaline, drink a few dozen shots of gin, then wipe off his face and chin, kick his mom right in her shin, try and lose his silly grin, deal with homophobia rumors all over again and rap about never becoming a has-been.