Monday, July 25, 2011

Yep, You're the Worst: Part II.. The Christmas Shoes

Update: I now have 6 followers and 14 votes in my poll!  Is this what being Justin Bieber feels like?  I’m going to resist the urge to compare myself to Kurt Cobain and shave my head.  Shaving my head sounds pretty good right now, though, because according to we're experiencing "suffocating heat" and, as I’ve mentioned, I don’t have air conditioning.   Summer is the devil's playtime, and I'm the kid to whom he's giving an atomic wedgie in the sandbox.  As it is, I sweat like Ruben Studdard chasing a Mr. Softee truck after a steam bath, so you can imagine how disgusting I am during the months of July and August. 

Additional update: I am experimenting with the Turbie Twist I received in a white elephant gift exchange and wearing it while I type this.  So, um, I look like this:

but minus the makeup, perfectly placed curl, and smile that suggests someone is holding a gun to my back.  Also, my Turbie is white with pink polka dots.

Anyway, my fury with the summer and the fact that I've made a resolution to blog at least once a week has led me to write Part II of Things That Are the Worst, as promised (to view Things That Are the Worst: Part I, click here).  2011 is the summer of the sequel anyway, right? 

Things That are the Worst: Part II

1) When people say that this is "the summer of the sequel." I want to roundhouse you people in the throat, because every summer is the "summer of the sequel."  In fact, every year is the year of the goddamn sequel.  Just because it's alliterative, doesn't make it a good headline.  Nor does it make it true.  Just because I ate eggplant for dinner, doesn't make 2011 the summer of the eggplant.  I eat eggplant all the time.  Congrats, summer, for giving me another reason to hate you.

Did I mention Kirsten Dunst's stupid red hat?

2) The movie Elizabethtown.  Oh man.. this movie was awful.  My friend Kelly let me hang out in her air conditioned apartment while she was at the beach with her family on Saturday, and I wanted to watch a movie I hadn't seen yet.  I happened to have my most recently received Netflix DVD, Catfish, with me so I watched that first and it was AMAZING.  Also, the filmmakers are a smokeshow triumvirate.  Go rent it right now.  Anyway, I still wasn't ready to leave the AC so I sorted through Kelly's DVDs for a movie I hadn't seen yet.  I knew that both Alec Baldwin and Paul Schneider were in Elizabethtown and I have a mad crush on both Jack Donaghy and Mark Brandanaquits so I decided to give it a whirl.  Following Catfish with Elizabethtown was like following a week in Bermuda with a weekend in the Wisconsin Dells.  Disappointment is inevitable.  Also, Alec Baldwin was in it for about 2 seconds and Paul Schneider had mutton chops.  Why was the movie terrible?  Orlando Bloom's American accent.  Kirsten Dunst's southern accent.  Kirsten Dunst's presence.  Susan Sarandon's awkward tap dancing/comedy routine at her husband's memorial service.  The plot.  

It tries to be Garden State and fails harder than a Paula Abdul sobriety test.  I'm not sure that an unpopular shoe design is really a billion dollar mistake.  I think that probably happens all the time, right?  I don't think it earns a cover of Forbes magazine with the headline "Fiasco of the Century" or whatever the hell it said.  I also don't think it merits wanting to kill yourself.  Speaking of which, duct taping a kitchen knife to an excercise bike is the stupidest way to kill yourself.  Even if Judy Greer hadn't called you and interrupted your suicide attempt, Orlando Bloom, it probably wouldn't have worked anyway because your sternum/ribs would have provided enough resistance to shift the knife's position in the duct tape.  Then, you'd probably end up with just one stab in the chest and a mess on your hands.  However, I would have been happy to eat my words had that worked out in the beginning and you saved me an hour and a half of a shit movie.

3) Shoes that look like feet.  And the people who wear them.  Go back to the tree canopy you came from.

4) Recent law school grads.  I was at a bar a couple of weeks ago and met two people who had recently graduated from law school.  When they told me they were lawyers, I said "Oh, that's cool," and should have frozen time to walk over to the bar and put money down on what they were going to say next because I would have made $20 on their response (and promptly spent it on drinks, being the irresponsible bachelors-degree-holder that I am): "Ugh, don't ever go to law school."  For some reason, everyone who went to law school feels the need to tell everyone else to never make the same mistake they did.  Well, no, it wasn't a mistake for them, but it will be for you.  This doesn't apply to adults who are happy making bank, carrying cool briefcases, and saying things like "no further questions" while fantasizing that they're Sam Waterston.  It's just the recent grads who are reveling in a state of self-importance because they put in a few more years at school and now they get to be an "esquire" which kind of sounds like someone in the feudal period who would have had a serf or two doing their bitch work.  Umm.. yeah, you're right.  If going to law school makes you a pretentious dickweed, thanks for the warning.

5) People who change their Facebook status 20 times/day.  I really don't want to have to sift through your constant life updates to find unflattering recently tagged pictures of people I don't like before they untag them.  Time is of the essence.  I hate you even more if your status involves emo song lyrics.  No one feels that many different emotions in one day.  If you do, paint a watercolor about it.  Get off my newsfeed.

6) Smudging/chipping your nail polish right after you thought it was dry.  This obviously just happened.

7) Girls who dress as slutty [fill-in-the-blank] for Halloween.  Ok, I'll admit freshman year of college I wore a slutty Hermione costume purchased from a website that probably also sold nipple clamps and Plan B, but freshman year was a practice round at life.  Puhlease, I didn't even have bangs yet.  Everyone knows you're supposed to get ugly for Halloween.  This year I went to a bar where I'm sure at some point a slutty Sarah Palin was making out with a slutty Chilean miner on top of the bar in exchange for tequila shots out of test tubes, and I was dressed as the Monopoly Man.  You know, ladies, it's hard to compete when you have a monocle, moustache and bushy white eyebrows.  On October 31 every year, can we just agree to level the playing field and alllll be fugly pieces for one night?

8) The "Christmas Shoes" song.  Speaking of holidays... this song is just the worst.  You know, there are just too many Christmas songs about being happy and not enough about people dying of terminal illnesses, right?  WTF.

The video is kind of the worst too.  It looks like it was filmed with a FlipCam in a Bass Pro Shop in Akron, Ohio.  I even hate the way that guy is chewing his gum.  He looks like a high school wrestling coach.  Wait, he's supposed to be the one singing?  I thought a black guy sang this.  Oh shit.. I'm looking up the band to see the lead singer's ethnicity and apparently a movie was made based on this "hit song" and Rob Lowe starred in it.  Wtf, Rob?  Were you on a bad acid trip and hired one of Santa's elves as your manager?  He was probably just a homeless dwarf in the right place at the right time.  For God's sake, you were Sam Seaborne, man.  Anyway, back to the music.

You couldn't find a cuter kid for this video?  His teeth look like they were meant for opening cans of Old Style for his daddy on the front porch while shooting at opossums.  I also find it unsettling to hear this singer's voice behind the kid mouthing the words.  Creepy.  Umm.. that kid totally scammed the high school wrestling coach, by the way.  He threw a handful of pennies on the table ... he was definitely banking on $30 worth of sympathy from the fool behind him in line.  'Tis the season to be a buck-tooth little snot rag apparently. Oh, wow, those are the shoes?  This whole time I imagined a pair of conservative black Pilgrim-ish pumps.  Those shoes look like a carpet bag.  Notice how the kid goes into the hospital and we never actually see his mom meet Jesus.  He's probably selling those to a blind lady for a $10 profit.  Congrats, kid.  You may actually be a worse human being than Balthazar Getty.

I conclude with a letter to summer and all that is terrible in the world:

Reminder: Just one more week to vote in the WiFi-naming poll! 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Speaking of WiFi...

Check out the new poll I've added to my blog!  Inspired by my last blog post - that's right, folks, I drink tiger blood and am inspired by MYSELF - Carolyn and I have a 21-email chain with the subject "Sex Room" going right now with ideas for naming our wireless network.  Not quite as impressive as our 80(!!)-email chain we have between us and our realtor with the subject "Eddie Walsh's cousin" but #thingsthatareawesome nonetheless.  So anyway, here are some of my favorite brainstorming ideas thus far.  Feel free to vote more than once.  Seriously.  I only have 5 followers.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Join other network...

Several days ago, I was in the deli next to my apartment buying an embarrassingly huge bottle of water which, coupled with my pajamas and lack of a bra, was very obviously hangover medicine.  I don't particularly give a blessed crap about these things but I noticed that there was an attractive man behind me purchasing a regular-sized bottle of water and was probably a little grossed out by my very presence.  I quickly exited the deli with my head down and as I fumbled through my purse for my keys, realized that the attractive normally-hydrated guy from the deli was standing behind me waiting to enter the building and ended up following me up the stairs and walking into the apartment literally across the hall from mine.  We shared an awkward laugh over this (and an unspoken agreement that I needed to shower) and it dawned on me that I don't know any of our neighbors.  I do, however, know the names of their wireless networks so here are the identities I've assigned them based on their Netgear aliases.  

Excellent Meat
3 jag-off Duke grads who work for Morgan Stanley, frequent the Village Pourhouse, decorated their apartment with Animal House and half-naked girl posters from college, and wear Lacoste polos.

Vag Pad
3 slutty ASU grads whom Excellent Meat collectively bones on Saturday nights in exchange for pancakes on Sunday mornings.  

 When asking for advice on how to get laid,
please consider his upper lip.
Looks like the nerd guru with the crustache from Freaks & Geeks.

I can't decide if this person is a hipster d-bag or if I kind of love him.  Since he spelled it "wuz," I think I'm going to give him the benefit of the doubt.  Either way, he definitely looks like The Edge and sleeps on a futon.

Forget Banksywuzhere.  This person needs to be my best friend.  Immediately.  The Vag Pad has spent the last 3 months trying to deduce whether or not this is the real RuPaul.

Is actually best friends with RuPaul

This fuckin' guy? He rules.

This stands for “Joe Motherfuckin Pesci rules,” and my neighbor is Robert DeNiro.

Still refers to her father as "Daddy" and has a Blackberry covered in pink rhinestones (you should read her BBM convos.. sooooo much drama).  Only drinks vodka red bulls.  May or may not wear Juicy Couture tracksuits to brunch.

Hug me! I have puppies
in my panel van!
Lord Huggington
Stuffed animal.  Or child molester.  

Perv.  Probably friends with Lord Huggington.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

*Free Rent

My friend Carolyn and I are signing a lease tomorrow to move at the end of the month, so it seems appropriate that I blog about finding an apartment in New York City, the difficulty/stress level of which lies somewhere between passing a kidney stone enveloped by porcupine and destroying a horcrux (happy Harry Potter 7 premiere, ya'll!).

Let’s begin with my search for a temporary sublet this past spring.  The only other places I’ve lived are Iowa City, Iowa and South Bend, Indiana so I was a little too optimistic in budgeting rent.  Trying to rent a bedroom in Manhattan for $900/month or less is like trying to buy organic avocadoes at Whole Foods with food stamps.   But I learned this the hard way.  With my Craigslist search parameters set to a $950/month max, I sent out a flurry of e-mails and set up my first sublet viewing.  How exciting!  The hellhole I entered became my Rosetta Stone for translating Craigslist real estate advertisements:

“Ideal location on the Lower East Side.” 
If this is advertised as $850/month, it isn't a real apartment.
Unless rent includes giving mandatory lap dances.
Translation: Welcome to scenic Chinatown.  I got off the subway and within a couple of blocks was surrounded by the stench of dirty refrigerator and feral cats. 

“Safe neighborhood”
Translation: Don’t mind that the building has no locks.  That’s right, these folks are so confident in the security of their home in Far East Pleasantville, that when I was outside the building and reluctantly called the Swedish exchange student from Craigslist so he could buzz me in, he said “Oh you can just walk in and come upstairs.” (unspoken understanding: don’t touch the banisters or breathe through your nose on your way up.)

“Perfect for students!”
Translation: You’re poor so you don’t mind sharing a room and living in what was or will be a crime scene, right?  I walked into the apartment and the “tour” consisted of the kitchen/living room/orgy pit, and three bedrooms.  I was then informed that I would have “at least” six roommates and was asked if I like to “drink lots of beers” on the weekend.   I said I preferred hard drugs but would be in touch, walked out the door, and called FEMA on my way to the subway.

Discouraged, I texted my mom that the first apartment was a disaster but that I was considering starting a blog because I was sure I’d collect lots of good material in my search.  She responded: “Do it!  Dad and I have some great stories from househunting in Westchester when I was pregnant with you including ducks in an attic.  Alive!”  I think those ducks migrated to Chinatown and died under the floorboards of that shitpit. 

Some Craigslist advertisements need no translation.  One guy advertised a sublet for “free rent.”  He was looking for a female roommate who would live there for free in exchange for getting naked any time he wanted.  Sex was optional but not required.  Just nakedness on demand.  Free rent in Manhattan?  It probably would’ve been worth taking to the negotiation table.  What about toplessness and homemade mac-n-cheese on demand?  Or bra-and-panties and pumicing your feet on demand? 

Anyway, I ended up moving out of my bachelorette pad at Grandma Rita’s into a fantastic 3-bedroom in the East Village with two awesome gay roommates who don’t really care to see me naked so the search paid off.  But alas, the sublet was temporary and it was time to hit the pavement once again.  This time, though, there were new players added to the mix.  First of all, I was moving with Carolyn so I had someone else to appreciate these amazing stories with.  And second of all, there were brokers.  

What do you mean, south of 68th Street?
So you live in... Brooklyn?
The broker we were going to use was a friend of my cousin.  I met him at a bar, and when I explained I was looking for apartments with my friend, he gave me his card and said he’d help us out and give us a discount on the broker’s fee.  Done.  He was very nice, but reminded us every 10 minutes that he was a male model and name-dropped like a beeyotch.  Congrats, you’ve met Blake Lively on two separate occasions.  And you ran into Janeane Garofalo in Union Square which is so weird because you did a movie together.  A)  Janeane Garofalo?  Was that worth mentioning?  B) Just because you were Asian Guy #4 doesn’t mean you two “did a movie together.”

Again, though, he was nice and told us he was going to give us the discount he gives family and ex-lovers.  Carolyn then asked me to hook up with him so we could get the discount he gives current lovers.  Speaking of which, his greatest contribution to our real estate tour of New York was the bedroom on Rivington and some street I’d never heard of which had one wall covered in 10”x10” mirrors.  This might have been the moment where totally tacky meets totally awesome – like a denim thong or Branson, Missouri.

The mirror sex room that could have been
Ultimately we went through our lovely broker Phil who asked us what a facial was because his girlfriend was getting one while we were seeing apartments with him.  Umm… yeah…  Anyway, when he took us to our lovely future home just a few blocks from where I live now, we felt that sense of “gestalt” (which 3 celebratory sangrias later, became the word of the day) and pounced on it as these two other turds with braces who were viewing it left to call their parents to ask if they could sign a lease.  Suck it.  You're the Chesapeake Indians and we're John Smith.  We claim this apartment in the name of America!  And powerhours!  Don't forget your smallpox-infested blanket on your way out the door. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Behold the Hour of Power

I realize I haven’t blogged in forever but, well, I’m not going to talk about the frozen linksys situation earlier this week.  And before that I was in Minneapolis for a reunion with my college roommates.  Sorry I’m not sorry.  Anyway, I knew I needed to get back on the horse but have been devoid of inspiration lately.  I was about to resort to “Things That are the Worst: Part II” when I remembered a conversation I had with my friend Ian recently.  A couple of weeks ago, Ian told me I should start a powerhour blog.  I don’t know if this means that he read my blog, thought it was crap, and was being polite by suggesting I rebrand rather than close up shop.  After all, they say you should write what you know and, well, I know powerhours.  So that’s the theme this week!  Don’t worry, though.. there will be a sequel to Things That Are The Worst but I’m going to save that for when I’m suffering from a  combination of writer’s block, apartment-hunt exhaustion, and PMS.  I suspect that shitstorm will result in my Sistine Chapel of blog posts.

Jon Hamm powerhours with double shots of scotch
Powerhours are the greatest drinking activity ever created.  Don’t question it.  I’m almost as defensive about my powerhours as I am with opening up Triple Word spaces in my Words with Friends games.

First of all, what’s more fun than drinking beer out of a shot glass?  Maybe drinking sweet tea vodka out of Jon Hamm’s belly button, but I’m working with the cards I was dealt.  If you don’t have a shot glass, experience has proven that measuring cups, soy sauce dishes, and urine sample containers also suffice.

Pre-made powerhours are sacrilegious.  If you're going to partake in this noble tradition, have some respect for the art.  Choose your own songs, choose your own minutes, choose your own transition (preferably Tracy Jordan shouting "Our basketball hoop was a rib cage! A RIB CAGE!")  The song choice has to be universally appealing.  This is not the time to be a pretentious asshole.. Your favorite band that no one has ever heard of will blow up in your face harder than the Challenger but with less sympathy because everyone’s drunk and now you’re killing their buzz with a hollow attempt at musical education. There is nothing more awkward than that moment when a song comes on and no one knows it.  Mary Moon was my Bay of Pigs.  Never again.  

There are certain songs that cannot fail in a powerhour.  The “Dirt Off Your Shoulder/Bittersweet Symphony” mash-up (minute 0:25-1:25), “No Diggity” (minute 1:49-2:49), “Like a Prayer” (0:22-1:22), etc.  Creativity is key.  Unexpected throwbacks > Top 40 everytime.  Remember "Hey Leonardo" or City High?  Slam drunk:

If every song I chose, could please the crowd, I'd choose "Forever"

The song order is important, as well.  Before a sporting event or on holidays such as President’s Day, Memorial Day, or 4th of July, start off with the National Anthem.  Your best choices – most importantly, the sing-a-longs - should start around minute 25.  At the beginning people are still talking/sober, so the first songs should be impressive as a hook but nothing that you’re going to wish people had gotten overly-properly-enthusiastic-drunk-person excited about.  But right around minute 25… This is when it gets loud and awesome.  Every 60 seconds someone should be saying “oh my God I love this song” or else you haven’t done your job right.  And God kills a puppy.  Choosing the right minute is also crucial.  Don’t worry about the beginning of the minute because people may still be taking their shot of beer/singing the previous song (it is impossible to pick one perfect minute in “Say My Name” because you have to include the “doc shah nah nah” at the beginning but then it ends right before “somethin’s goin’ down that’s the way it seems” just as you’ve unleashed your singing-Beyonce-in-the-shower diva voice).  But it should end on a high note so everyone is singing along and even the babysitters’ club lightweights who insist they aren’t going to do the full powerhour, can’t not toast that glorious minute.

Minutes 55-59, bring it home with sentimental, sloppy drunk songs like “Piano Man” and “Tiny Dancer” (think people get sappy about those in a bar?  How about when they’ve realized they only have 2 more shots of beer left in what has become the most awesome hour of their lives?).  And always, always finish with the theme from Rudy.

After four years of pouring my heart, soul, and what's left of my liver into custom-making powerhours, I have ended up with the most fantastically diverse iTunes library ever.  Once we even made a powerhour of songs that I only had for the purpose of powerhours.  This musical collection might make me look like an alcoholic schizophrenic pedophile but in my heart, I know that only the first part is true.  So I'll leave you with a little peek at my iTunes powerhour library.

1) "Rugrat Rap" (Preschool Powerhour)
Cookie sheets..
For the seasoned veterans' spill-proof powerhours
2) "Groovy Kind of Love" - Phil Collins (Rise and Shine Powerhour... you know when you wake up with a song in your head?  My roommate Andrea and I recorded them until we had 60 and then powerhoured to them)
3) That song from A League of Their Own (Grand Slam Powerhour)
4) "Bananas in Pajamas" (Andrea's Powerhour..  It wasn't long enough so we listened to it twice.)
5) "Money Can't Buy You Class" - Countess Luann (Gay Pride Powerhour)
6) "Poop in a Jar" - Hayseed Dixie (Georgetown Powerhour)
7) The Dreidel Song - Nick Jr. Kids (Christmas Powerhour)
8) "Hold Onto the Nights" - Richard Marx (Power Ballad Powerhour)
9) "Cha Cha Slide" - Mr. C the Slide Man (Dance Powerhour)
10) "It's Raining Men" - The Weather Girls (Drag Queen Powerhour)
11) Christian Bale yelling at the lighting guy on set (Georgetown Powerhour Part II)
12) "The Galaxy is Ours" from Disney Channel original movie Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century (Kyle's Powerhour.. it was a boy band thing)
13) Dawson's Creek Theme - Paula Cole (T. Ro's Powerhour.. because he looks like James Van Der Beek)
14)   "Eye to Eye" from A Goofy Movie (Castle Point Powerhour)
15) "Too Close" - Next (Valentine's Day Powerhour)

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sometimes, everything is just the worst.

It's 2:15 am, I've been writing an epic post for over 2 hours, and just lost all my work.  Everything.

Now, I'm writing a rough outline of what I had written so I can try to re-create it when I set aside time this week.

For now, though, I'm going to try to go to sleep despite being this angry: