Wednesday, September 26, 2007

An Open Letter to Canada

Dear Canada,

Its not that we don't appreciate the oil. We really do - and I can only imagine what gas prices were to look like were it not for the 1.6 million barrels per day that you export to us.

And it's difficult to imagine a more polite and friendly neighbor to our North. In your own quiet and unassuming way, you've made significant contributions to out culture. I mean, there's hockey, which has allowed the NBA to crow that its our country's third most popular professional sports league. 1 There's also Michael J. Fox and...um...curling...and...erm...I'm sure a lot of other wonderful things.

Oh, I almost forgot Canadian Bacon - without which our Egg McMuffin sandwiches would seem so much less exotic!

Anyway, my point is that we value you and the spirit of friendship and cooperation that allowed our countries to share what had been for many years the longest unguarded border in the world.2

But WTF Canada? Its nearly October and its about 90 degrees here today and so humid that I had to dry off before getting into my shower this morning.

So with all due respect I'd appreciate it if you'd spend a little less time trying to wring a few more precious days of wholesome Canadian fun up in Banff - and a little more time sending cold air masses our way.

In return, we'll give you two weeks off in February, and we'll forget all about that Celine Dion thing.

Your friend,

Joe

1 And no, NHL fans, the WNBA doesn't really count.

2 Its amazing how things you learned in elementary school sometimes stick with you.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Cooking Something Up

I didn't get a chance to do much blogging last week. In addition to the usual heavy workload, I spent my free time working to perfect a new breed of fighting.

Its a combination of Krav Maga - a self-defense and military hand-to-hand combat system developed in Israel which assumes no quarter and emphasizes maximum threat neutralization in a "real life" context - and the lethal techniques used by old Italian women while protecting their turf in the kitchens.

I’m calling it Krav-ioli.

Friday, September 21, 2007

The Week in Pictures LXXVIII

Random Friday Thoughts:

It's Friday. And that's pretty much all I can say about this week. I came to work today expecting to kick back, catch-up on my blog reading and commenting, and get some administrative work done. Alas, t'was not to be.

If a tomato comes into the office on a weekend, do you think it's to do ketchup work?

I'm sorry. I'll shut up now.

Let's move on to the WiP:


George Bush made a surprise visit to Iraq a few weeks back, where introduced the first of two-headed soldiers designed to double troop counts in the region.


An aging and weary sun announced that it will only go as low as the horizon each evening, where it will spend the night in it's newly purchased beach house before rising again in the morning.


Frustrated at his inability to communicate with his doctor, a patient found a novel way to demonstrate how painful his hemorrhoids are.


Local officials have temporarily closed a stretch of the beach after a hundreds of surfers from an unknown source began washing ashore.


An unexpected gust of wind sent a dance troupe soaring several hundred feet through the air during a recent outdoor performance.


BMW scratched plans to release a Mini Copper SUV after the vehicles woefully underperformed during a series of off-road tests.


A surprising new study shows that male Pandas are just as likely to sit around watching football and eating snacks as their human counterparts.


Beach goers at the Red Sea were treated to a free sushi lunch yesterday.


Weary of being bothered by fans, celebrity superhero Superman is building a huge fence and gateway arch around his Fortress of Solitude which he says has become a "Fortress of Stalkers"


Faced with dwindling sales, Sports Illustrated is taking a different approach with it's 2008 Swimsuit Calendar.


WiP Classifieds:
For sale: 3 bedroom, 2 bath ranch. Convenient to transportation. All offers considered.


Tired of constantly being late for events, a local man has developed a quicker way for his wife to put her face on.


Jedi fighting champion Luke Skywalker suffered his first defeat when his lightsaber shorted circuited at a critical point in the battle.


Gypsies went on a strike this week seeking higher fortune telling rates in the face of rising crystal ball costs.


With one of the gypsies going so far as to demonstrate how the cheap crystal balls she's forced to by often allow spirits to escape.


In our police blotter, a local dog was arrested for impersonating the Easter Bunny.

While a panda is awaiting trail on indecency charges....


...for his erotically charged sculpture "Shoots and Leaves."


And finally, autumn begins on Sunday, which means that there are only a few days left to see 99 red balloons floating in the summer sky.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Oh Dip!

Hey, someone put avocado in my guacamole!

I'm still having fun looking at the keyword analysis on Statcounter. My favorite this week was what about the woman in tampa that meet a man on match.com?

Yeah. I wonder whatever happened to her?

And finally, on the way into Grand Central Station earlier today I overheard a guy say "People's time is infinitely, infinitely more valuable than their money."

Because, you know, it sounds so much wiser and less trite when you add an adjective or two.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Celebrity Death Pool

As a way of proving myself worthy of participating in a Celebrity Death Pool at my office, I was recently asked to submit a 250 word essay outlining why I thought I should be allowed to join.

Here's what I came up with:

Death has always fascinated me. In fact, for as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to end my life by dying and for a long time I made a habit of wanting to die every time I got rejected on a Friday night.1

But that’s not the point. The point is that if there are two things that go together like cake and ice cream, it’s celebrities and death..2

For example, what do Julieta Campos, Duan Yihe, Paul Gillmor, Edward Gramlich, Alexey Kazantsev, D. James Kennedy, and Nikos Nikolaidis have in common? Well, apart from their love of kittens (a bit of trivia that I just made up) they all died on September 5, 2007. More to the point, they were all slightly famous, and yet somehow I’d never heard of any of them.

And that’s just one day in September! Every day a pseudo-celebrity will die, leaving me muttering obscenities as I peruse the obituaries on the train ride to work the next morning.

“How could I have overlooked Ian Porterfield, the British football player and manager who scored Sunderland's 1973 FA Cup winner and who died of colon cancer?” I’d have wondered upon reading that he passed away yesterday. “It was so obvious!”

So why should I be allowed to join? Because I’ll probably suck at it, allowing you to mock my ineptitude like the cruel world tormented an innocent Britney Spears after this year’s VMA awards.

I just hope y’all can sleep at night.3

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1 Which occurred with alarming regularity.

2 Why, you ask? I have no idea. However, Paige is making me write a 250 word essay and the preceding four sentences took up 28 of them.

3 Please note that the use of y’all is intended as nothing more than blatant pandering to the Southern judges.4

4 Not that I’d assume that Paige is from Texas. I’m a big fan and I’ve followed her career closely, so I know she’s from Boston.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Analyze This

When I created my blog I installed Statcounter, a web tracker that provided me with endless hours of fun. I'd check the site again and again, waiting for that magical day when I had more than three visitors.

As you can imagine, the thrill wore off quickly.

During a recent conference call I logged in and did a keyword analysis to see what search terms directed visitors here. It was far more interesting and amusing than I ever imagined.

For starters, pinknest turns out to be quite the trendsetter as evidenced by the search for amuse bouche slang.

Other keywords included random act of skateboarding by yogi, which was probably just a matter of him experimenting with ways to grab more pic-a-nic baskets; panda marks his territory by pissing, which seems like more of a statement than a search; breakfast descant of sunset which sounded very romantic and poetic until I discovered that it's the name of a song by a techno band named Breakfast; and finally, i found a white powdery substance inside my toilet paper roll, which is clearly part of Charmin's new "Sit and Snort" advertising campaign.

Then there was the search for kevin costner and twinkies which, I suppose, can be interpreted any number of innocent or disturbing ways.

Though I can't recall having done so I must have written about pervert ronald mcdonald edinburgh, a phrase which I hope wasn't linked to the search for licking women's shoes.

There was also picking lemons infection which probably lead to the tearful breakdown embarrassing doctor office search- because, after all, how do you expect your partner to believe that you got that infection from picking lemons?

I'm going to go ahead and guess that - in addition to bringing this person to my blog - the search for accidentally kneed balls dancing yielded a number of ice-related results.

As you might expect, the always popular "nude" searches were well represented. They began with celebritynudes and then progressed into more specific requests including erica cerra nude, khandi alexander nude, lark voorhies ass pics, alexx woods nude, lisa mateo nude, and work out women nude - before concluding with the search for nude gymnastics event humiliation, which is something that probably happens all too frequently in that particular sport.

There was a semi-innocent search for free alabama jones and the busty crusade video, but things went downhill from here. Next up (so to speak) was halle berry stares at penis sculpture. Now I'm not sure if it was an animatronic penis, but I am sure that's probably something one would want to have on hand if it lasts more than four hours, or if has performance anxiety relating to participating in fellatio on stage.

And while I'm troubled to learn that my blog can be found by through those terms, I'm even more worried about the folks that visited via searches for mexico donkey mating and pet animal having intercourse with different variety.

Then finally there was the truly puzzling you shall not covet your neighbor's wife. threesome search. I guess the assumption is that you're not really coveting if you ask her husband to join in. I'm guessing that someone who got caught conducting one of these searches was the same person responsible for buy her flowers for no reason and, in the event that didn't work, survive keelhauling.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Five Wednesday Thoughts

1. Last week's lunar eclipse gave me the opportunity to stand on the train platform and bellow "You have displeased the gods! Pay me tribute and I will convince them to bring back your moon!" at my fellow commuters. Sadly, the sun began to rise before anyone could get their wallets out. I'll have to remember to try this on the west coast next time.

2. My birthday is coming up on Friday and all week long I've had the Ben Folds song "Still Fighting It" running through my head - particularly the part that goes "Everybody knows / It hurts to grow up / And everybody does /It's so weird to be back here / Let me tell you what /The years go on and / We're still fighting it / We're still fighting it"

I'm trying not to read too much into that.

3. Modell's, a northeast sporting goods chain, has a store near my office. For the past week or two they've stationed workers outside in an effort to coerce passersby to apply for their new MasterCard. As an enticement, they're giving away a Modell's t-shirt or hat to everyone that applies for the card. For some reason, people eat that up. I have a hard time understanding a thought process that seems to go like this:

"So let me get this straight. Not only will you give me a credit card with an exorbitant interest rate that rewards me with points that can only be used in your stores, but you'll also let me walk around advertising your company? Is there any way that I can get a shirt and a hat? No? What if I fill out two applications? Okay. You don't want to over-saturate the market and dilute the brand. I understand. Anyway, it sounds great! Where do I sign up?"

4. When I went downstairs to grab lunch yesterday, I noticed a woman at the bottom starting up the escalator clearly searching for someone. When I left for the day about five hours later, she was still there doing the same thing. That's the most dedicated stalker I've seen in quite some time.

5. I've noticed an increasing tendency to add the suffix "holic" to people who overindulge in a particular habit. Someone who overeats is called a "foodaholic." Someone who spends too much time is slumber is a "sleepaholic." A person addicted to sex is a "sexaholic." I assume these are all offshoots of alcoholic, but if you look at the term it's simply the word "alcohol" with and "ic" at the end. Therefore, wouldn't the proper words be foodic, sleepic, and sexic?

Then again, maybe not. After all, I've heard "Sex? Ick!" from enough women to last me a lifetime.