Wednesday, November 30, 2005

For Dummies

What a week it's been already. I've been trying to work (okay, blog) while fighting flu like symptoms. This morning, my internal organs and few remaining brain cells seem to have banded together to form a daring "Prison Break-esque" attempt to liquefy and escape my dying body via my sinus cavities.

All in all, Im not a pretty sight (a fact that's true of most days). Still, I won't let this illness prevent me from boring the hell out of you with my ramblings.

Like this one for example:

I've noticed that an increasing number of bloggers have turned to word verification as a way of combating spammers. While I'm a horrible typist, I have to admit that I kind of like the game show aspect of entering my comments and then trying to advance to the bonus round by correctly typing in the random sequence of letters.

Blogger: Okay Joe, for a million dollars and a trip to Hawaii, please type the letters you see in this box.

Joe: doyslce

Blogger: Oh, I'm sorry. We were looking for doyslve....slve...but thanks for playing our game, and please try again tomorrow.

At the same time, I've noticed that the word verifications are getting longer and more difficult to type. It's only a matter of time before they'll make me enter the complete "War and Peace" (sans typos) before my comment can be posted.

Hmmm....Then again perhaps it's just a clever way for people to avoid having to read my childish musings.

Anyway, speaking of books, (notice the cool segue...) I was in Barnes and Noble the other day when I came across a book called "Prostate Cancer for Dummies." Obviously, I was taken aback. I mean who in their right mind would want to learn how to get prostate cancer?

Even more disturbing was the fact that book was out in plain sight and easily reachable by small children. Being the concerned citizen that I am, I went over to management to complain.

The manager, a nice woman in her mid forties with flowing auburn hair, lovely blue/green eyes, full pouty lips, and a figure that screamed "throw me up on this counter and take me right here and now you heaving pile of man meat..." Erm...perhaps you had to be there. Believe me, it sounded much better when it was coming from her figure than it does here in written form.

Anyway, let's get back to the point.

Once I'd told her my story, she patiently explained that she wasn't in the least bit interested in having my children. With that out of the way, I asked about the book and she quickly - and somewhat condescendingly I might add - explained that the book was about the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer. As you can imagine, I felt quite the fool so I shuffled away with my head bowed - but not before politely inquiring if she'd reconsider her position regarding intercourse with me, and hearing her somewhat less polite reiteration of her position (or lack thereof) on the subject.

On the walk home, another thought struck.

Imagine you're a guy and you're at your doctor's office. He's just told you that you have prostate cancer. You're clearly shaken, but you think to yourself "at least it can't get worse"

And you'd be wrong.

As you stare off in disbelief, your doctor puts his hands together, looks you in the eye, and says "There are a plethora of books out there on the topic but, frankly, most of them would probably go right over your head. We need to face facts here. You're not the sharpest tool in the shed. That's why I'd recommend that you go out and buy "Prostate Cancer for Dummies."

Now there's something wrong with writing a book designed to make cancer patients feel worse. I mean, what kind of a sick mind would even think of doing something like that? In order to find the answer, I called Wiley Publishing, Inc.,the publisher of the "For Dummies" books, and spoke with the Chief Marketing Officer, Mike Simpson.

The started off on a civil note, but quickly devolved after he learned that I was the same man who had propositioned his wife in the bookstore earlier that day. I mean, what are the odds? Anyway, after he threatened to kill me if I ever spoke to him or his wife again, he called me an idiot and hung up. It was then that I had my epiphany.

After just a few moments of conversation, this marketing professional had sized me up and realized that I could never even hope aspire to the intellectual plateau of "Dummies" readers. Clearly, should the time ever come in which I find myself sitting across from my doctor and hearing that biopsy turned up positive, I'm going to be advised to buy "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Prostate Cancer"

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

The Week in Pictures XXV

You may have noticed that the Week in Pictures is a little early this week. Don't worry, that's not due to any burst of efficiency on my part (there's never a danger of that), it's just that I'm planning to get away from everyone and everything for a few days during this long holiday weekend so that I can spend a little time alone sorting some things out for myself and I'd hate to disappoint all four of my regular readers1 by not posting these before I leave.

Before we get to the pictures, in the spirit of the upcoming holiday, I thought I'd share with you several of my favorite Thanksgiving euphemisms:

Stuffing the turkey
Nibbling the corn on the cob
Pouring some gravy to moisten the meat
Spanking the monkey2
Mashing potatoes
Baking some yams
Swallowing pearl onions
Steaming cauliflower
Grabbing some broccoli head

Roasting the chestnuts 3

1 You have no idea how time consuming it is to make up all of those comments every week.

2 This only has meaning in the small town of Danville, Kentucky where concern over avian flu (and a fondness for "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom") has lead residents to forgo turkeys this year in favor of monkey brains.

2 Trust me, you don't want to try this one.

And with all of that said, let's move on to The Week in Pictures:

During a tearful press conference, President Bush finally admitted what many have suspected - that he's never learned how to open doors.

As part of his massive modernization project, Santa Claus unveiled the new rocket propelled snow mobile that he'll begin using this Christmas.

Meanwhile, Mrs. Claus purchased a sweet ride of her own. "It's been a long time since I felt something so powerful between my legs" she said in an obvious dig at her husband.

In a related story, reindeer unemployment levels are at an all time high.

Our song of the week is "Delicate" by Damien Rice (see sidebar) and is dedicated to Mel.

Gratuitous picture of me in the morning.

Maytag unveiled their new "animal dryer", which allows pet owners to quickly dry and fluff their furry companions.

As is my usual morning custom, I went to the park the other day to watch women breast feed. All of a sudden some woman starts yelling at me to put the camera away. I mean, she acts like only some kind of pervert would get aroused by stuff like that...

After his successful Victoria's Secret performance, Ricky Martin announced that he's taking some time off to go to India to practice his technique.

Sure, like I'm the only one who sees some erotic symbolism in this picture.

Erm...I'm not the only one, right?

Historians now say that Ghengis Khan's Mongolian hordes were more advanced than previously thought, and that they even brought port-a-potties along during their campaigns.

Let's move on to our video of the week:

Our crack investigative journalist Alice was able to bring back this candid picture proving that the doggie brothel we exposed weeks ago is alive and well and doing a brisk business in Paris.

Officials at the Smithsonian National Zoo are concerned about the all-night poker games that have been going on in the panda enclosure.

Gratuitous picture of Nadine Velazquez

The faithful have begun making pilgrimages to the Marquee club in London, where the spirit of Jimi Hendrix appears nightly for shows at 8, 10, and 1.

Actress/singer Hilary Duff who has lost so much weight that her legs can no longer support her, is now forced to travel around in a floating plastic bubble.

Mariah Carey's recent weight gain resulted in an embarrassing moment when her slinky black dress ripped open as she waved to the crowd at the American Music Awards.

Korean gymnast Kim Hyo-Bin is out of action indefinitely after impaling herself on her spotter's arm after missing the bar during a recent competition.

The new "G Force Ice Skating" event has been eliminated after several skaters suffered multiple joint dislocations while practicing for the Winter X Games.

And finally, the city of Miami, Florida has commissioned a sculpture honoring that memorable day in 1968 when hometown hero Vanilla Ice was born.

Friday, November 18, 2005

The Week in Pictures XXIV

After the crushing failure of TBCTMJF(I)FNR, Joe has gone off into seclusion leaving his blogging responsibilities to me - his alter-ego - for the time being.

I have no idea what I'm supposed to write here, so I may as well start by giving you the real scoop on him. For starters, you know that annoying little self-deprecating thing he does all of the time? I know you think he's trying to be humble, but the reality is about a million times worse than even his jokes would leave you to believe. I mean you should thank God you don't really know the guy, because his comments don't even begin to describe what a complete and total loser he is - and I don't just mean his personality (such as it is). I could go on for days. His looks are enough to frighten babies, he's as dumb as a box of rocks, and don't even get me started on his hair - or what's left of it. I mean, I haven't seen a retreat that fast since Saddam Hussein left Kuwait.

And don't even get me started on that whole 'L' thing that some of you have been asking about in the comments. Let me tell you how pathetic this guy is...

Crap...I think I hear him coming. Do me a favor and scroll down quickly before he sees this....

After propositioning every Christian woman in America, Former President Bill Clinton announced that he's converted to Judaism in an effort to open up new opportunities.

Thousands of Pirate Gnomes hit the streets of New York this week during their version of fleet week.

In a shocking story, it was revealed this week that Albert Einstein - shown here with his 22 year old girlfriend - transplanted his head onto a robot body and has been living in Japan since 1955.

All 17 people who bought tickets to the Devo's most recent tour have filed a class action lawsuit accusing the band of using impostors to perform their shows.

Gratuitous picture of Gisele Bundchen

In a nod to soaring gas prices, Batman announced that he's traded in the Batmobile for a more fuel efficient Volkswagen Beetle convertible.

Scientists in the Amazon are have begun a massive Rogaine spraying program in an attempt to curb the rainforest's rapidly receding treeline.

The Chilean government has begun building an extraterrestrial casino that they hope will lure foreign money into their struggling economy.

And now it's time for our video of the week:

The prototype of a cheap and robust laptop for pupils has was showcased for the first time by MIT's Nicholas Negroponte at the UN net summit in Tunis. When pressed, Negroponte sheepishly admitted that the machines cost only $100 because people won't pay more than that for something so ugly.

Unable to afford a fountain for their town square, Barcelona residents have begin taking turns forming a human tower and urinating on the people below.

After several months of complete nighttime darkness, meteorologists in Cape Town were able to coax the moon from it's hiding place behind a cloud bank by using an ingenious lure that mimicked a female moon in heat.

The song of the week is "You and Me" by Lifehouse (see sidebar)

Editor's Note: When taken together, there's only one person in the world that this song and the video of the week could possibly describe.

In entertainment news, Mary-Kate Olsen's publicists announced that the actress has dropped out of NYU to spend more time with her own kind.

In animal news, this guy walked into a bar with a duck on his head. The bartender looked up and said "Where did you get that ape?" The guy replied, "That's not ape, it's a duck". The bartender said "I was talking to the duck".

Later on, the guy walked into another bar. The bartender who's seen just about everything said "What can I do for you?" The duck replied "You can start by getting this guy off my ass."

Now it's your turn to join in the fun. Write your own caption for this picture.*

*Please note that this man is wearing an ibis on his head - not a duck.

The current craze for custom cross breeds has lead to the world's first Beaglephant - shown here with his father. The mother is reportedly doing as well as can be expected after giving birth to something three times her size.

Zookeepers in the Berlin Zoo are having a brown bear fitted for contact lenses after he repeatedly copulated with a tree trunk.

A pair of scholars in Greece have published a paper claiming that ancient sailors weren't drawn to the irresistible charm of the Sirens' song. In fact,they theorize that the creatures couldn't sing at all, but were instead just "extremely bendable."

And finally, the New York Knicks are off to a difficult start this year. Many of the players attribute their struggles to new coach Larry Brown's insistence that they wear blindfolds and use "the force" to win games.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Alphabet Soup

I thought at some point life was supposed to get easier. Sadly, that's not the case.

To begin with, that post about my family seemed to take a lot out of me. No only did I not write for a while, but I couldn't even bring myself to re-read what I'd written nor could I even look at the comments (sorry Jeanne).

Needless to say, when I read the comments, I was overwhelmed by the many kind words and support. I'm truly humbled and grateful to "know" so many wonderful people and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the compassion shown by all of you.

On another note. They're actually making me work these days. Can you believe it? If I'd known they were going to do that, I would have asked for a higher salary. On the bright side, our busy time doesn't last all that long (and let's not have any wiseass remarks about me not lasting long from any of my ex's that might read this), so I should be back to blogging regularly by next week.

That should be reason enough for you to avoid this blog.

All of that said, let's move on to today's post. Some time ago, the incomparable MJ (last seen driving nearly 175 mph in the Vegas area) and I were talking about writing challenges. Somehow, we got on the subject of trying to write a story in which ever sentence uses the next letter of the alphabet. Here's what I came up with.
"Arrrrrrr, matey" said the first mate as he strolled up to the Black Ted, the Pirate Captain.

Black Ted sighed.

"Can you please stop repeating that line over and over?" he asked.

"Don't know any other pirate words, Captain." replied the first mate with a shrug.

"Eloquence is the key to being a successful Pirate Capitan, so if you want to progress you'll need to learn. For example, I have to say port and starboard instead of left and right. Gunwales is another word you'll want to know."

"How do you know all of that stuff?"

"I've been sailing the seven seas since you were in diapers, matey" said the Capitan with a wink.

Jolly Roger fluttering, they sailed off into the sunset.

"Kill those bastards" cried the British Navy Admiral as he spied Black Ted's ship through his...erm...spyglass.

"Let's get 'em" shouted his crew.

Mainsails hoisted and other sailing stuff readied, they set off in pursuit.

Never in history had there been a more exciting chase at sea, but the British ship was the fastest in the world. One day later they had pulled even.

"Pull over" shouted the Admiral, momentarily confused about the proper protocol.

"Qunice in the hole!" shouted the pirate gunner from below decks.

"Run!" Shouted the Admiral as he and his men took cover from the hard apple like fruit flying across their decks.

"Surrender!" bellowed the Black Ted.

"Truce?" queried the Admiral, peering over the keg of rum behind which he'd taken refuge

"Unthinkable!" parried Black Ted as he swung across to board the British ship.

"Viola!" he cried as he tore off his pirate disguise, revealing the secret he'd never told anyone - not even his crew.

"What?!?" exclaimed the Admiral, rubbing his eyes in disbelief.

Xanthic colors danced before his eyes as he looked in awe at the beautiful woman standing before him.

"You never guessed that Black Ted was really me, your sister, in disguise!"

Zelda laughed maniacally as she threw one last quince at his head, knocking the Admiral senseless and leaving his ship leaderless and ready for plunder.

Of course, that wasn't enough for MJ, who requested - actually demanded - that I write a story in which each word began with the next letter of the alphabet:

A baby cried. Downstairs everyone froze.

"Go help."

I jumped, knocking Lilly's mother, Nancy, over.

Peter queried Rachel. "She's there?"

Upstairs, Violet wet-nursed.

Xena yawned.

She's a cruel taskmaster, that MJ is.

Anyway, carry on. There's nothing left to see here. Come back on Friday for the next installment of the Week in Pictures, and an update on the progress of TBCTMJF(I)FNR.

Friday, November 11, 2005

The Week in Pictures XXIII

The Dali Lama moved a step closer to answering an ancient question after successfully determining the sound of two hands clapping.

In the hopes of encouraging more people to visit his home, eleven and a half foot tall giant Max Headroom has installed a 'people door' in his front entrance. "This will allow those cute little fellas to come and go as they please" he said.

Prince Charles took his wife Camilla visited the Old Western Saloon where he vowed to "drink her pretty." His plan backfired, though, when the drunked Prince tried to convince a dog in the doorway to come back to the hotel for a threesome.

Later, the homesick Prince went to see Beach Blanket Bablyon where he repeatedly referred to the lead actress, Val Diamond, as "Mummy."

Venicain authorities patrolling St. Marc Square found a baby that had apparently been abandoned at birth and had been raised by pigeons ever since.

The makers of Trojan brand condoms claim to have recently developed method of birth control that is 100% reliable.

In light of high gas prices and lower SUV sales, General Motors has retooled several of it's Hummer plants to allow them to produce shopping carts.

Gratuitous picture of Jessica Beil

Several Victoria's Secret models are suing the company saying that the angel's wings they're forced to have surgically implanted prevent them from getting other work and even from dressing properly.

Attendees at the Victoria's Secret fashion show were slow to recognize Ricky Martin, not because the singer had changed at all, but because they'd never see him with women before.

Later, he stormed out after seeing Naomi Campbell appear on stage with a trumpet. "I can't believe they didn't ask me to do that." he said. "If there's one expert in blowing around here, it's me."

Meanwhile, outside of the show, PETA activists staged a protest against what they called "The senseless slaughter of muppets just so the models can wear their fur."

Our song of the week is Coln Hay's "I Just Don't Think I'll Ever Get Over You" (see sidebar)

Authorities in Florida have released this image of a brown reculse spider that has been terrorizing the Daytona Beach area.

Our "Get Well and Don't Kill your Boss" video of the week was "Vindicated" by Dashboard Confessional.

Right wing conservatives are calling for the Washington Monument to be covered with a sheet, after realizing that it resembles a giant penis.

Faced with overpopulation and a near non-existent defense budget, Egyptian officials are experimenting with a revolutionary human catapult missle system.
The animal kingdom is in an uproar after a male dog and female cat married this week. Critics say the cat is truly in love, while the dog just wants some pussy.

Berlin's Olympic Stadium is finally undergoing a much needed refurbishing. Among other things, workers will build it the proper scale, which will allow people to stand up straight while watching events.

And finally, Tyra Banks had a breakdown after catching a glimpse of herself in the mirror during the aforementioned Victoria's Secret show and deciding that she was much heavier than the other models.

Rather than going on a crash diet as many expected, Banks has apparently gone on an eating binge resulting in a 200 pound weight gain in the past four days alone.