The Daily Dump

A place where everyone (me) is welcomed to express their opinions openly and honestly. I encourage free thinking, free wheeling, off-the-cuff banter and monetary donations.

Friday, April 29

You're tired!

of the remaining characters on The Apprentice, and so am I. I can't picture any of these three running an ice cream stand let alone a multi-million dollar corporation.

But two memorable quotes from the show last night:

“I could beat Kendra in aerial combat without a plane.”
Craig, on how easy it would be to defeat Kendra in the reward dogfight, minutes before Kendra kicks his ass.

“I guarantee you everyone who has been in the board room with me and has been fired has come out and said, ‘I did not see that coming.’”
Alex, on how his soft-spoken demeanor belied his boardroom viciousness.(Likewise, every guy that has roomed with Alex and found him creeping into their bed at night has also said, “I did not see that coming.”)

Other than that it’s a slow Friday at work. Listening to satellite radio and putting together an itunes playlist. Basically getting drunk on public information sharing. I’m not sure people realize how much of a phenomenon of the times it is, to be interconnected with some many people in such an intimate way. For example, I read a blog about a girl’s dye job gone bad yesterday. That’s an extremely personal crusade, a woman against her unruly hair. Luckily, I’ve never dated a girl with bad hair (for good reason), but I assume if I did that I would empathize more with this person and, consequently, share in their emotional turmoil. All for visiting their blog. As it stands now I just read through the posts and chuckled a little at the vanity of women coloring their hair when, 97% of the time, their original hair color looks the best (not the case for Meg Ryan at all).

The point is, there was the possibility that I could have been subject to real, human emotion here. And that’s a dangerous thing. The lesson, as always, wield your blog carefully.

That said, in a recent press conference, Bill Gates said that owning 10% of North America wasn’t enough, he no needed to have women’s breasts. And they couldn’t be normal size breasts. They had to be the biggest.


Also, poor Pope Benedict has been criticized for being too old and too strict and in poor health, and now he’s being called the harbinger of the end of time. This is according to a prophesy from 12th Century visionary Saint Malachy (an Irish saint, I’ll let you decide how much of the “vision” to trust.) Apparently, St. Malachy foresaw a pope of the future whom he described as the "Glory of the Olive." The doomsayers realized that Pope Benedict, being German, clearly fits that description. When they subsequently realized they were completely wrong and simply making things up, they decided to make the connection to “the Order of Saint Benedict, a branch of which is known as the Olivetans.” Seems pretty clear cut to me . . .

But thinking the general public might need further proof, doomsayers also pointed to a picture taken in March during Palm Sunday celebrations showing the pope holding olive branches. They went on to add that Pope Benedict will be a “Pope of Peace” (get it, olive branch, symbol for peace), as opposed to the previous two Popes who have been the "Pope of Meanness" and the "Pope of Bad Language." Oddly, though, there was no mention made of this picture, which I believe to be the conclusive proof:


Personally, I think the actual end will come when the President and the pope stand in the same room for the first time. The President will make some self-evident remark, but in such a way that it seems like he’s the only one who knows it’s true, then he'll chuckle to himself a little, and the pope will respond with a polite nod before invoking the wrath of God on everyone.

But what do I know, I'm part Irish too. And maybe drunk right now..

Quote of the day:
“Is this what pre middle age is like? Not quite bald but not quite rich enough to compensate if we were bald? Not quite having a nervous break down but I still can't sleep? Not quite gay but I go to church more than I used to?”
- James Vanderberg, on the ails of being middle aged . . . at 25

Thursday, April 28

My commute this morning . . .

. . . was absurd. Like I rolled out of bed, took a shower, got dressed, then got kicked in the nuts for an hour and a half. It’s one subway straight downtown, but the MTA finds a way to turn it into a friggin NYSC spinning class. And this wasn’t your garden variety “sick passenger” or “police investigation.” (That’s the best – in the time it takes to clear a police investigation I could get off the train, run up the track to the station, solve the crime, and walk home.) No, this was a “track condition.” That’s it. No further information. Just a track condition. I’m assuming it was a bad condition. But I wouldn’t know, because they never told me.

To make matters worse, I was standing next to a rather insane woman. She wasn’t one of those blatantly crazy ones that have the look in their eye that they might punch you or lick you at any moment. She was a sneaky one – seemingly sane for at least 45 minutes, but then all of a sudden she starts talking, complaining about the train delay. I assume she is talking to someone she knows sitting next to her. I glance up from my magazine and see the people on either side of her doing their best to obviously avoid her. It wasn’t so hard for the one on her right who had a book, but the one on her left had nothing, so he stared at his fingers as though he had just found something he never knew he had.

We’re all waiting for this woman to stop talking, but she just keeps on going, getting louder and louder. At this point, I’m convinced she’s either drunk or she has, just at this very moment, “gone crazy.” Because she wasn’t dressed crazy. She wasn’t even dressed sort of crazy – like Hilfiger Outlet sweat pants and a “Local 38” t-shirt. She looked like she was on her way to work; but at this point the thought of her “working” somewhere was beyond belief. The next thing I know, she is asking anyone who will listen (no one) if the speaker on the wall (for the automated voice) is a “radio.” She proceeds to tap it and say loudly and slowly (as though the imaginary people she is speaking to on the imaginary other end might be a little crazy), “Hello? This train isn’t moving. Do you know this train isn’t moving?”

I think I actually heard the large man next to me fart in an effort to hold in his laughter, because if they hear you laugh, they know you’re real, and then they try to talk to you. All the way to Wall Street we rode like this, in the face of the funniest thing most of us had seen in weeks, maybe months, unable to even laugh out loud.

Then I get to work and the first the thing the receptionist says to me is, “Did you hear about Tom Cruise and that little girl?” Apparently overnight the rumors had changed from Tom Cruise “dating” Katie Holmes to Tom Cruise doing something inappropriate with a little girl? Either that or my receptionist is crazy. Oh, that’s right – my receptionist IS crazy . . .

Regardless, I don’t know how to feel about this whole thing. I loved Joey before Joey even loved Joey, back in a time when Dawson had her racked with self-consciousness and sexual inhibition. But Tom’s a good guy, great catch. The age thing shouldn’t matter either – I mean, Joey was already three years old by the time Tom did his first movie. That may not be old enough to form a long term memory, but it’s certainly old enough to sit in the movie theater with your head upright and play with your ba-ba.

The best thing about this whole gossip orgasm? Pictures of Katie Holmes everywhere. She even cracked Yahoo’s most emailed. And she didn’t even have to sleep with a contestant on the reality show for which she is a judge. Good for you, Joey.


"Tom will be the best thing for my career since my nude scene in The Gift . . ."

Wednesday, April 27

Uber-couple.

So Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise are dating. I don't know which one I'm more jealous of.
Undoubtedly the most interesting thing that's happened in the past 24 hours: "BANGKOK (Reuters) - Doctors found around 50 maggots in the ears of an 84-year-old Thai man after he went to hospital complaining of an itch."

An ITCH! I got a haircut the other day and a few of the hairs got caught in the collar of my shirt. THAT'S an itch. This man had an INFESTATION. And he's 84 years old! I hope I can survive a mosquito bite at 84.

Oh, and Airbus released it's new plane, the A380. At maximum capacity, it can hold 840 passengers. That's almost 500 more annoying, smelly passengers than on a traditional plane. This is a can't miss idea: it's like taking a 6 hour flight in a multiplex theater. With worse food.

Award for the Headline That Could Make You Gag goes to: Flesh Chunks Found in Iowa Waterlines. Not that I needed a reason not to go to Iowa, but at least now I have a valid one.

And 128 people have emaild this picture to someone. Honestly, I don't know why. I hope there's some sort of pun or comic insinuation I'm missing here, because I don't want to believe that 128 people (that know how to use the internet) like this picture so much that they feel the need to send it to someone. It can't be just the "cat and bird are supposed to be enemies" can it? That Tom and Jerry shit? MAYBE if the cat was black and the bird was wearing an RNC button - that could be something. But this? 128 people? I'm disgusted.


First Bush and Prince Abdullah, now this?

Especially after only 131 people sent this picture, which is a picture of the year candidate in my mind.


Tennis on the Reservation.

Pain and the NYSC

I had one of the most humbling experiences of my life last night. pushing aside all advice I had received to the contrary, I signed up for a spinning class at the New York Sports Club. The girlfriend and I signed up together and, nervous at being the only newcomers, took two bikes in the back corner. As we’re checking out the bikes, trying not to look too conspicuous in our cluelessness, a woman sidles up next to us and says, “Are you new here too?” so apparently, we’re SO obviously new that even a newcomer knows we’re new.

The girlfriend replies, “Yeah, first time. But my boyfriend bikes all the time, so I’m going to try to follow him.” My first instinct is to be flattered, followed almost immediately by a wave of sickening pressure at being “the biker” to show the newbies the lead. still, I had the utmost confidence I could hack it. I used to bike almost 20 miles a day in my prime. You know, when I was 18. And that’s only . . . seven years ago?

What follows is the most grueling 45 minutes you can imagine. So much sweat that the new girl next to me is visibly trying to move her stationary bike away from me for fear of being sprayed. But in the middle of it, I wouldn’t have cared if my bike fell over and crushed her leg. At one point, on the verge of all out hallucination, legs moving so fast if that front wheel touched the ground I would have taken off like a turbo charged mini-bike, i considered the possibility of just stopping and walking out – sucking up all the belittling it would have involved with the girlfriend and the embarrassment in front of the class, and, to be honest, the only reason I didn’t was because I feared that if I stopped and got off the bike, my feet would still move wildly in circles and I wouldn’t be able to walk out of the room.

Looking back, I am reminded of something a friend once said concerning taking a large dump. He said, “This must be what it’s like for a woman after having a baby. You know, that extreme sense of relief.” Sure, if you’ve carried that crap around for nine months and now it wakes you up crying at 4am every morning. But still – when I finally did step off that bike 45 minutes later, sweat soaked crotch looking precisely like I peed myself, I can say with an unwavering sense of certainty that I felt two things: 1. a weakness in my knees not felt since first the first time I saw Nicole Eggert in “Blown Away”; and 2. a supreme sense of accomplishment. Maybe I wasn’t giving the world the gift of progeny, but I didn’t have a heart attack and die right there in the middle of the NYSC. And that means something.

What it means is that I’m giving myself the day off today and eating a cookie the size of my head for lunch.

Quote of the day:
“Mr. Pants, may he rest in peace. Next time don't buy the cat off the back of a truck.”
- John Johnson, consoling a friend after the death of his cat, Mr. Pants.

Tuesday, April 26

The Things We Do For Oil

In an effort to help reduce the rising cost of oil, President Bush has made the drastic and controversial decision to wed Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Abdullah. Dick Cheney commented, "In the Second Term, you can take more risks."


A cautious romance.


Oil for kisses?

Monday, April 25

Trains, Boats and Caaaah's

I don’t understand the fascination with Boston. People say it has “the city feel, but still a neighborhood feel” and that it has “charm.” I find it about as charming as “Gotti #2” in Growing Up Gotti.

But I might not be giving it a fair shake, considering I probably spent more time traveling to and from Boston than I actually spent in the actual city. Starting Friday night, I took a train out to my parents’ house on Long Island, woke up at 5:45 the next morning to drive out to Orient Point to catch the car-ferry to New London, CT, then drove to Woburn, MA to visit with my girlfriend’s family, then drove into Boston to check into the hotel, then drove back to Woburn to have dinner with the family, then drove back to Boston to go out for drinks that night. Woke up the next morning and drove back to Woburn (for the sole purpose of my girlfriend buying another pair of sweat pants from a J. Crew store in the mall there because there’s no sales tax in MA, no I’m not bitter it’s fine), then drove back to New London for the ferry and finally back to my parent’s house to drop off the car and catch a train back to Manhattan to get in bed by midnight.
Travel time: about 17 hours. Time spent not traveling: about 19 hours, including sleep. Realizing your “weekend getaway” was more stressful than a regular work-week: about $425.

I won’t bore you with all the details. In fact, I could just say, “We ate at a lot of chain restaurants and drank a lot of Dunkin’ Donuts coffee and they still haven’t figured out that they’re saying their a’s weird,” and you would be caught up. But for the fun of it, here’s a general recap of the weekend, in excerpts of conversations.

_____________________________

(On the car-ferry)
The Girlfriend: (annoyed) “Is this how fast we move the whole time?”
Me: “We’re still docked.”
The Girlfriend: “Oh.”
(Note: She makes more money than me. There, I said it.)

The Girlfriend: (watching me write down notes on the ferry) “How come you refer to me as ‘the girlfriend’ in your blog? You do it so girls won’t think you have a girlfriend, don’t you.”
Me: “I think they figure out you’re my girlfriend when I call you ‘girlfriend.’”

Hotel Receptionist: “Where are you traveling from?”
Me: “New York.”
Hotel Receptionist: “Oh, are you Yankees fans?”
Me: “Indeed we are.”
Hotel Receptionist: “OK, let me just add some miscellaneous charges to your room here…”
Me: (over enthusiastic laugh) “Haha, yeah. Ha.”

(There’s a certain sense of castration that comes along with feeling indebted to a Red Sox fan. It’s like taking a really hot girl out on a first date, and her wanting to see a movie that you already saw and hated. You have to suck it up and pay to sit through it again. Here, I had to do the same thing, just stand there and joke along with the guy, because he had my proverbial balls in his proverbial mouth; my balls being an 11th floor room with a king size bed and a view and his mouth being a second floor interior room with pubic hair in the tub. Or some metaphor that makes sense.)

The Girlfriend: (sitting next to her father at table in a restaurant) “You see? Look at my nose, I really think it’s crooked.”
Me: “Babe, I told you, it’s not cro-“
Her father: “Jeez, yeah, you’re right! I noticed that before and I wasn’t going to say anything, but yeah it does look a little crooked.”
Me: (quietly, to her sister sitting next to me) “Three years of trying to convince her it’s not crooked, ruined in 10 seconds.”

The Girlfriend: (in the car driving back from dinner to the hotel) “. . . I knew it was crooked.”
Me: “My life is never going to be the same, is it.”

Me: “I’ve decided to start a campaign to rename Boston “Long Island: The City.”
The Girlfriend: “I don’t think that would go over very well.”
Me: “Yeah, you’re right. I guess I shouldn’t . . .”

Bouncer at a bar called The Rack : “Sorry bro, can’t let you in with that t-shirt on.”
Me: “Really? Even if I have this sweater on over it?”
Bouncer: “Well it’s got a zipper, it’s a jacket.”
Me: “I’ll keep it zipped.”
Bouncer: “Sorry bro, have to have a collared shirt on.”
Me: (steps aside, watches guy on line behind me with a sweater on go inside)

Me: (dressed in a pink, three quarter sleeve polo shirt borrowed from a girl we are with)
Bouncer: (not remembering me) “ . . . “
Me: (taking my ID back and going inside) “ . . . “
Me: (to girlfriend) “Man, that was awkward.”
Girlfriend: “Why, because you’re wearing a coral, three quarter sleeved women’s polo shirt?”
Me: “It’s salmon.”
The Girlfriend: “I’m sorry, ma’am. You’re right, it’s salmon.“

Me: (in the bathroom of the bar, changing shirts with various guys looking at me) “Uh . . .” (realize there’s nothing to say, fart and leave)

Me: (in the bar) “I think this place is a front for some sort of cloning experiment subsidized by the city of Boston. The only thing I can’t figure out is why they want their city filled with guys in blue striped shirts and slightly overweight girls.”
The Girlfriend: (loudly) “You mean slightly overweight whores.”
Me: (looking at her a little shocked)
The Girlfriend: “I think I’m getting drunk.”

Me: “We should market t-shirts for girls that just have the word ‘whore’ written across the front.”
The Girlfriend: “And then one for guys that says ‘I’m with whore.’”
Me: “Which is funny because it sounds like ‘I’m with her.’”
The Girlfriend: “Thanks for pointing that out.”

The Girlfriend: (sitting next to me in the car on the way home, finishes her Diet Dr. Pepper. burps loudly) “Whoa.”
Me: “It’s like taking a road trip with my grandpa.”

The internet just came back on and, my god, it’s like the very first time, like watching a picture of Cindy Crawford come up on my screen, inch by inch over my 33.3k modem. I finally know what Madonna was talking about in “Like a Virgin.” I can’t get enough. I’m even excited about checking my credit card charges.

I’m going to go catch up with my news and sports. It’s been such an eventful weekend and all I know right now is that the Celtics blew away the Pacers in Game 1, we’re spending another 80 billion dollars on a war that was so successful “we won it too fast,” and the San Francisco 49er’s blew the first pick of the draft on Alex Smith. (Not that I don’t like the kid, but come on – in all likelihood you’re going to have the number one pick in the draft again next year. You’re bringing in a really unproven rookie QB with a receiving corp. that couldn’t receive a package if it was sent UPS, and there were at least 4 quality-to-stud running backs on the board. Would you trust your backfield to Kevan Barlow after last season’s performance? I just don’t get it. Maybe at the private workouts, Alex Smith said something really funny and the coaches were like, “I like having this kid around.” Other than that, I’m baffled.)

Here’s a new segment of the blog – the daily email quote, taken from the 8,000+ emails my friends and I have exchanged over the past 2 and a half years. They're funny guys. And cool. And great friends. Actually, if you want to date any of them, let me know.

Quote of the Day:
“If you see me walking down the hall, please don't make fun of me. I’m just a water filter.”
- Matt Sucich, commenting on overhearing a conversation with a girl named “Brita”

Friday, April 22

If Verizon were my girlfriend...

... I would be getting drunk with my friends tonight looking to hook-up. They just failed me. Miserably. Is there any excuse for my office to not have internet for TWO days? This is the modern day equivalent to a caveman trying to explain to his family why he can't get the fire started for the next two days. There was a guy in my office today who actually almost openly wept when he found out that the internet still wasn't working. It was me.

I'm off to Boston for the weekend. Bad people, horrible city, terrible state (unless anyone from Boston happens to read this, in which case I can never be taken seriously - I'm terrible at geography). Have you ever driven on 95 going through Massachusetts? Basically, they set up these enormous green signs at exits that signal "Dunkin Donuts" at this exit or "Roy Rogers" at this exit, then you get off the highway and drive for miles down a road with nothing on it but trees and people who can't pronounce their a's. I'm going because it's my girlfriend's sister's birthday. And well she's cute and convinces me of doing things that I don't really want to do, like drinking skim milk and having sex.

I'm going to go draft a memo to Verizon before I leave for the weekend: "Please be advised that I will be unavailable on the morning of Monday, April 25th, between the hours of 9:00AM and 10:00AM (EST). I will be in Conference Room A bending over trying to get my own dick into my ass, thereby saving you the trouble of having to do it yourselves. Any calls will be forwarded to my voicemail." Have a great weekend everyone. Oh wait, no one reads this.

Thursday, April 21

Internet went down in my office today. It was horrendous, I can hardly explain the carnage. Grown men with families walking around, lost and helpless, not knowing what to do with themselves. At one point I heard a 40 year old women nearly scream, “I have to send an email!” I’m not saying we need the internet; I’m just saying we’re desperate and utterly hopeless without it.

Luckily I am home now and safe again, with yahoo by my side; specifically Yahoo’s "most popular photos" section. The “most popular photos” section is my own private sociological experiment. After months of dedicated research, I have come to the conclusion that, invariably, the most popular pictures will contain at least one of the following:

1. animal picture
2. freak picture
3. hot girl picture.

The wild card seems to be something of a "crazy current events" shot, - i.e. hurricane pictures, reality TV star pictures, Siegfried and Roy pictures, etc. What does this say about our society? I haven't published my conclusions yet. But when seventy-eight people have emailed this picture to someone they know:




well my gut tells me it's not because they're baseball fans.

Oh, and humans are obsessed with monkeys. It’s bordering on perverse.

(The smoke alarm is going off in the apartment down the hall from me. After about 3 minutes, I thought maybe it was a serious problem. Then I peeked my head out the door and heard an old woman screaming, “Damnit stop! I’m trying to cook my dinner!” as the smoke alarm said, “Fire, Fire, Fire.” So I quietly closed the door, thinking that my neighbors are more of a problem than raging flames?)

Anyway, how about this quote from a news story the other day when Pope Benedict was first elected: “Niels Hendrich, a 40-year-old salesman from Hamburg, Germany, jumped up and down with joy and called his father on a cell phone. ”Habemus papam!" he shouted into the phone, using the Latin for: "We have a pope."

Imagine being this excited about your religion? I don't even get that excited when I find money.

This was another heading in the most popular stories today: “Pope Benedict XVI Gets E-Mail Address” War in Iraq, crumbling economy, poverty and starvation (standard) and this is what we’re most concerned about? (I was uplifted for a moment when this story was number six: Report: Organism a Threat to Great Lakes; but disheartened when I checked back later and it had slipped to twelve, presumably after people realized that the word wasn’t “orgasm.”) But this quote from the email story is classic: “John Paul, who died April 2, was the first pope to use e-mail, a medium that made its debut during his 26-year papacy. The Vatican said he received tens of thousands of messages in his final weeks as he struggled with illness. He also received hundreds of thousands of solicitations for pornography and low cost mortgages from Satan himself.” OK, I added the last sentence.

Oh, here’s the Pope’s email address if you’re interested:
benedictxvi@vatican.va. Personally, I’m not getting involved until he sets up his blog.

Finally, can everyone please agree with me that the Catholic Church made a HUGE mistake in not turning this "selection of a new pope" into a reality TV show. I mean come on - it would EASILY become the most watched show ever. They could have a room set off to the side where the cardinals could go in and complain to a camera about the other cardinals. (“Cardinal Egan smells like mothballs. I can’t stand sitting next to him!”) And then they could vote off 10 cardinals every day until it's down to the final three, and America could text their votes in to choose the next pope. It would be golden.

Time to go watch a tivo’d MacGuyver episode before bed. If the internet isn’t fixed in my office by tomorrow I’m quitting my job. No job is that important.

Can I say "Blow me" in a blog?

Got off to a rough start with the first post yesterday.

But honestly, is HTML the best we can do? Every other area of technology is outstripping itself on a daily basis, and we’re still using this? This derivation of some ancient Greek language? The only viable explanation is that it’s kept difficult on purpose so only a select few highly trained people will be able to do it. The programmers of the world have united and vowed to not let the common man design his own website. It’s like the legal profession (for which I work) – they make it as confusing and as ridiculously complicated as possible in order to keep highly paid lawyers in business. If I were a more dedicated man, I would do something about this.

Instead, I’m going to go check the yahoo headlines. My favorite part of the day. More to come later on this and other important issues – like Pope Benedict! (Am I the only one who thinks of Andy Garcia’s character in Oceans Eleven every time I hear the name Benedict? Makes for an interesting religious experience.)

Wednesday, April 20

HTML

can blow me.