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, September 30

Illegitimate Children Deserve Happiness Too, Sometimes

So yesterday was “Marry Your Baby Daddy” Day here in New York. (I know I’m a little late covering this, but it’s in keeping with the festive theme. As in, “Uh oh – I’m late,” or “Why’s the child support late again, dirt bag?” or “Listen son, I know I haven’t been a good father lately . . .” etc.

This holiday is a new craze started by author Maryann Reid, who wrote a book bearing the holiday’s name . . . or made up a holiday bearing the book’s name. Whatever, I didn’t actually do any research for this. But I do know that the title does not mean that if you happen to have a baby daddy, you should go out and marry him. That is still criminal as far as I know, holiday or not. Nor does it mean that you should encourage your daddy to marry his own baby, which again, I believe is still prohibited by law.

What it does mean (figuratively, if not literally) is that if you’ve had a child with someone out of wedlock you should marry them! Go for it! Kids deserve a family, even if their parents don’t recognize each other for the first few days. And I believe in this; I really do. However, I’m constantly the devil’s advocate. I’m always the one who has to argue the other side of things, even at parties when people say things like, “This party is lovely,” and I shout back, “Oh really? Because this dip is warm!” It’s just my nature.

I’m also an opportunist. Three years ago when blogs were first popular, I sensed that this might be the next big thing. And look – four years later I have a readership of over 40 people and am owner of one the most popular blogs with the words “daily” and “dump” in the title. (It’s true, check Google.)

So I’ve decided that I’m going to capitalize on the success of this book and release a book of my own. (And no, I am not deterred by the failure of my first attempt, my follow-up to the hit HBO series “Sex in the City” entitled “No Sex In The City.” I am a fighter. That is another thing I am.)

Here are a few of my preliminary ideas I plan on pitching. Look for them this coming Fall:



















How To Make HER Pay the Alimony: Inside you’ll find such useful tips as planting drugs in her home, giving her a communicable disease and finding those pictures of her in the internet. And with all the money you’ll save from the tax breaks once you gain custody, you’ll be able to get that new plasma television. I guarantee it.




















But You Said You Were On The Pill
: I’m sure they also said they were really drunk, they weren’t looking for a commitment and they didn’t even like kids.



















You Can’t Prove It’s Mine: Is it a boy? Is it a girl? Is it even yours? Helpful information on how to beat a paternity test without having to move to the Southwest. Plus a special section full of first-hand tips from NBA superstars.



















Yes You CAN Wear White the Second Time!: Because men too deserve a second chance at a fresh start.




















Don’t Marry Your Daddy, Because That’s Illegal
: This is a rather short book. In fact, I was just thinking of making this one a placard that could stand next to me at my book signings. Or maybe I could option it for a “The More You Know” spot on NBC. Kieffer Sutherland would be perfect for it. “Don’t marry your daddy, BECAUSE IT’S [bleep] ILLEGAL! TELL ME WHERE YOUR DADDY IS! TELL ME NOW!” Can he be carrying a gun? Is that allowed?




















There’s Always Adoption
: Hundreds of good arguments as to why she should give the child up for adoption. Everything from, “She’s only a year old, it’s not like she’ll be able to pick us out of a line-up,” to “You are the one who told me not to pull out. So you be the one to find a family for him.” She won’t be able to say no!




















Ah Shit, Not Again! (And Other Love Stories)
: An unforgettable collection of stories centered around the wonderful gift of life. Full of joy and tenderness, it is sure to be a fixture in American literature for years to come.




















Using The Possessive ‘S’
: I’m telling you people, It will CHANGE YOUR LIFE. Grammar is fun and grammar is easy, just like the girl that got you into this whole situation. Yes, it gets tricky with plurals, but when you can write an email about how funny your “bosses’ pants” are with correct usage of the plural possessive, well . . . that will make you a better person.

Wednesday, September 28

What It Means To Be Queens Boulevard

Had an awfully thrilling day today getting work done at the Queensborough Department of Housing, which is located about 200 miles out of the city on Queens Boulevard – the supposed birthplace of Vincent Chase and his “Entourage” posse. And let me tell you: when he delivers that last line in his indie movie Queens Boulevard with such bravado (“I am Queens Boulevard”), well that’s nothing to brag about.

I think he should have drawn out the scene a little more. Made it a more eloquent and descriptive metaphor:

I am “FedEx Kinkos.”
I am “dangerous highway intersections.”*
I am “Eric Comfort Shoes.”
I am “Computer Training.”
I am “Lorento Pizza.”
I am “Hardware.”
I am “Burger King.”
I am “Fruit and Vegetable.”
I am “Glatt Kosher.”

I AM Queens Boulevard.

And for further clarification:

This is not Queens Boulevard.








And people do not do this on Queens Boulevard.








And women on Queens Boulevard do not look like this.








They look more like this.

















(If you don’t watch ‘Entourage” this post means nothing to you; unless you watch “Everybody Loves Raymond,” in which case it means very little; which is not much less than what all my other posts mean to you.)


­­­­­­­­­­­___________________________
* I wasn’t kidding.


Tuesday, September 27

A Tribute to My Best Friend (But He's Dead Now)

Puppy Swallows 13-inch Knife

This picture reminded me of a pet I had when I was growing up. It’s name was Blaze and it was an x-ray machine . . .

Just kidding. He was actually an extremely overweight chocolate Labrador. Not like he was a cute puppy, turned rugged youthful hunting-dog, turned old overweight sage-dog. He was chubby at birth and fat by age one. It was my dad’s fault really, because when we went to pick him out of a litter of seven chocolate Labs, my sister and I immediately went for the one who was jumping all over the other puppies and had this look in his eyes that said, “I never stop moving! Ever!”

If it were a movie, my father would have stared up into the sky with a blank look on his face and on the screen would appear a glimpse of the future with my father aiming a shotgun at a full grown dog doing laps around our backyard with my little sister in its mouth, while I stood behind him screaming, “But he’s my best friend! What has Catherine ever done for me!”

So in an act of parental authority, my father chose the only puppy in the box that was sleeping. This would come to be the predominant theme in Blaze’s long, tiring life. He would spend ten hours a day laying on the carpet in the living room, moving every hour or so in accordance with the patch of sun coming through the bay windows. He would also move if he farted, proving that he wasn’t too lazy to use common sense. Oddly, though, if he had to sneeze he didn’t find it worthwhile to stand up – he would just bang his nose on the floor with the force of a hefty sneeze behind it.

Much like the dog in the picture, Blaze also had an affinity for eating things, items both edible and potentially poisonous. He held no prejudice for color or texture (although the box of crayons certainly spruced up our dull backyard). He did, however, hold a special place in his heart for socks. For the first three years we owned him, you could, at any time of the day, hear my mother scream, “Missing sock!” at which point everyone would stop what they were doing and try to catch the dog before he swallowed someone’s innocent sock. Often we were able to recover them. Sometimes they ended up in the back lawn where my sister and I would hover over it both grossed out and in awe of our dog.

Among his other digestive feats was a box full of metal key chains, a Barbie doll’s head (producing one of the more indelible childhood memories, seeing it atop a pile of crap in the yard), an entire roast beef and a bag of coffee left under the Christmas tree. In time, we got very good at hiding anything edible, knowing how far to keep food in towards the center of the table, securing low-level cabinets with ties as though he were a child and we were trying to keep him out of the Ajax. However, we were never sure what else he might eat, so we ended up keeping anything smaller than a baseball on high shelves for most of my childhood, meaning if there was no one in the house tall enough to reach my toys for me I ended up playing with Tupperware or pillows.

The point is, Blaze is remembered predominately as a very fat chocolate Lab who, on many occasions, looked and acted like a drowsy seal. And that’s an accurate description, unless he was outside in which case he was “the grazing cow.” (Yes, he ate the lawn.) But I’m positive that if he had known that all he had to do to become a national celebrity and get a story on CNN.com was swallow a 12-inch ginsu knife, he would have done it. And not because he would have wanted to be famous – but because he knew that I would have wanted to be famous.

And he was just that kind of dog.

Monday, September 26

Another Reason I Don’t Have A Serious Job

I met up with The Girlfriend and some of her co-workers tonight for some good old fashioned bowling. The Girlfriend talked me up as a “great bowler” which is about as good as being talked up as being “really good at math.” Yes, I am a pretty good bowler. I went to a Catholic grade school and we didn’t have what larger schools call “sports.” We had kick line, band and bowling. So I was a star saxophonist (until my much anticipated Christmas concert solo of “Glory of Love” was derailed by a broken wrist in the 6th grade) and I was a star bowler.

I figured I could play this two ways: 1. I could play mediocre and just do the whole “Oh man, I haven’t played in a while” thing; or 2. I could embarrass everyone, mostly the people who were happy when they got a six. (Who’s satisfied with a six?) Obviously, wanting to continue dating The Girlfriend, I opted for choice number one.

Unfortunately for everyone, there was beer involved; and as soon as it proved that the rest of my team (The Girlfriend, who continually complained, “I have to go again? I just went five minutes ago!” and an ex-coworker of hers who was wearing flip-flops) wasn’t as interested in winning as I was, well it got ugly. First I suggested to The Girlfriend and a our other teammate that they lift their shirts to distract the guys on the other team. Then, after The Girlfriend rolled a gutter ball in a crucial situation, I screamed at her, “You’re on the couch tonight!” Throw in a few fist pumps, and the night was complete.

Apparently, these things embarrassed The Girlfriend. I don’t quite understand “office politics” because my co-workers are an old Jewish man who calls me into his office to ask if I know why his back hurts and a crazy elderly secretary who once told me that someone on “Survivor” was a “cunt” because she voted against the alliance. Clearly my office never got the memo on office politics.

In the end, I was bailed out by rolling a strike to win the second game and missing a spare to lose the third game – the perfect balance of “IN YO FACE” and “I’d like my girlfriend to keep her job.” But I’m left wondering: Am I a retard when it comes to acting corporate? Is this going to hold me back in life? And, most importantly, is The Girlfriend going to let me come to her office Christmas party this year? I love Christmas parties.

Saturday, September 24

Plus I Still Can't Spell It Without Using Spell-Check

It always happens to me – I drive around looking for a parking spot for 45 minutes, only to find one four blocks and two avenues away, and as I walk back up to my apartment I see some schmuck from Massachusetts pulling into a spot right in front of my building.

Massachusetts should change it’s state motto to:

“Massachusetts – finding new and inventive ways to piss off Dan. Since 1979.”

Friday, September 23

Major Appliance Redemption

Seems like “letting Dan down” is a prevalent theme as of late. First and famously it was Time Warner, then it was my fantasy football team, who played more like my fantasy gay team this week, and then it culminated with my refrigerator. I’m half expecting my mom to call me up and let me know I’m not really her son, so I should bring a bottle of wine when I come to visit from now on.

Now, not unsurprisingly, I’ve been quite harshly let down by Major Appliance Service Co., who missed my appointment to have the refrigerator fixed. I say unsurprisingly because when I called at 8:00 yesterday morning to confirm what time they would be coming, they told me, “Some time before 1:00.” And when I suggested that perhaps we could narrow it down to “between 12:00 and 1:00” so I could go to work in the morning, rush home on a long lunch break, move a heavy refrigerator instead of actually eating lunch and then rush back to the office, they responded, “Yeah, OK.”

Lo and behold, as I rush from the subway to my apartment at 11:55, I pull out my cell phone and there is a message from Major Appliance (great name, by the way) saying, “It’s 11:35, you had an appointment. Please call to reschedule.” Visions of Time Warner flash before my eyes like George Costanza getting a wedgie in the high school locker room. I fumble through my bag looking for a Xanax, only to realize that I don’t actually take Xanax – probably the most convincing evidence that I should be taking Xanax.

However, lest I write them off too quickly as just another heartless appliance repair service with a clever name, Major Appliance really came through in the clutch. After a few phone calls the technician agreed to come back around at the tail end of the 1:00 deadline. Now that’s dedication. Beaming with pride that I had chosen the best appliance repair center, I checked my wallet to see what I could offer the technician for his courtesy. Unfortunately (for him) after my friend John and I bought sandwiches and a magnum of wine to celebrate the season premier of “Lost” the night before, I had two dollars left. But you know what they say: Kindness is a one way street. And I’m confident he has enough for both of us.

Turns out my refrigerator frosted up in some hidden compartment due to a malfunctioning part whose name I don’t really remember because I was too busy staring at the technician’s incorrectly buttoned shirt instead of listening to him talk. I tuned in just in time for him to tell me that the new part should be available in one to two weeks. In the meantime, I have to defrost my allegedly frost-free refrigerator and throw away everything that has survived up until this point; which, for me, is no different than burning money. I buy loaves of bread when they are on sale and freeze them instead of buying regular priced loaves of bread when I actually need bread. Even emptying out the ice trays into the sink was oddly painful, and they’re free.

But it’s nice to know that, despite all the hurt refrigerator has caused me over the past couple of weeks, he’s not an asshole through and through. He didn’t quit on me, he just broke down a little. And, after the refrigerator equivalent of a kidney transfer, he will be up and running again in no time, which will put the pressure squarely on trash bin as being the lowest performer in The First Annual Appliance Rating . . . and firmly establish that perhaps I need a lot more than just Xanax.

Thursday, September 22

Not Cool Refrigerator. Not Cool.

My refrigerator is broken. Not broken like the handle fell off, broken like it doesn’t stay cold. It doesn’t refrige things.

I’ve come to realize how much I take my refrigerator for granted. Even in movies where the person has no money and lives in a shithole apartment with brown water and holes in the walls, they still have a working refrigerator. And there’s a reason for that. Because you can’t keep food without a refrigerator. And food is important.

So here I am, without a refrigerator for the past week. It’s been on a slow decline and I’ve been gradually moving food from the refrigerator to the freezer, like when everyone on the Titanic climbed to the bow of the sinking ship even though they knew they were only delaying the inevitable. I started eating as much as I could of what would eventually go bad, but there’s only so much frozen meat you can eat in a two or three day span. Even The Girlfriend couldn’t eat all the food fast enough, and she eats so fast she sometimes forgets when she’s already eaten something (e.g. Q: “Where did my other piece of chicken go?” A: “You ate it.”)

I’m angry and I’m frustrated. I feel like a good friend has let me down. And what’s more, I’m hungry. I haven’t had milk in over a week because I can’t keep it at home, and who buys milk at work? “Hey Dan, how’s it going? Whoa, what have you got there big fella? Is that a carton of milk? Welcome to the fifth grade everyone, Dan brought the milk.” (At least that’s what I would say.) Meanwhile, I can feel my bones osteoperosisizing. It’s a bad situation and, to sum up, I’m mad at my refrigerator. Mad as hell. And this is what I’m going to do about it.

The First Annual Appliance Rating


Oven: Gets hot, stays hot. Good job.


Toilet: You have clogged on me only once, and it wasn’t even because of something solid. You just got hitched up somehow (although to this day my Super doesn’t believe me.) Otherwise, you’ve been tried and tested. And you have passed.


Trash bin: You smell sometimes, even when there is nothing in you. And I don’t understand that. Then again you are a trash bin, so I guess that’s just the way you are. You’re terrific at holding trash though.


Fan: I’m a big fan.


Sink: I bought this faucet because my old faucet, designed by assholes, came up off the sink about one inch before jutting out over my already shallow sink, to the point where I couldn’t even fit my Brita pitcher under the faucet without tipping it sideways. This faucet has changed my life. I love you, faucet.


Refrigerator: I ought to bury you in the desert like Joe Pesci at the end of Casino. You are a warm refrigerator. You are nothing to me. I look down on you.

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU BETRAY ME!

I feel better now. Well, better about the refrigerator, not better about this.

Wednesday, September 21

Hooray Drugs!

Dutch Talk-Show Host to Take Heroin on Air

"This is dangerous and it sets a bad example," Christian Democrat party spokesman Pieter Heerma said.

No, riding a motorcycle without a helmet is dangerous and sets a bad example. Using heroin on live television is . . . USING HEROIN ON LIVE TELEVISION!

In other segments of the show, Wesselink plans to go on a drinking binge in a series of pubs. He also plans to take the hallucinogenic drug LSD — on his couch under the supervision of his mother.

I don’t even understand what I’m reading. Can television executes in the Netherlands actually be this base and morally corrupt? And we thought the U.S. was bad? What do they do for the third show, go on a school trip to a lynching? Have a contest to see who can eat the most lead paint chips without passing out? Pee on each other?

I just can’t believe this. I’m confused, I’m disgusted, I’m irate and more than anything I want to see this damn show.

More Bad Advice For Good People

My friend Scott seems to think that the advice I give my friends is simply too useful to be kept to ourselves. Scott, it should be noted, is currently in a healthy, loving relationship and only once over the course of our seven year friendship (about five years ago) has he asked me for advice on women. That advice led directly to him breaking up a dancer who could do a full split and instead dating a mess of a girl who would, a few years later, right around the time the dancer was getting her breast implants, cheat on him with her boss’ husband . . . and a few other people.

Everyone has an off day.

This advice recently went out to a friend who is dating a girl who happens to still be in college:

“The first thing you have to do is make her drop out of college. Ceramics? It doesn't sound like she's doing anything important anyway. Then make her get a job and get an apartment and get bitter at life. If she says she doesn't want to do any of these things, say, "No one wants to do these things. You think this is where i want to be in life!" Then make like you will hit her, but back away and brush her hair lovingly.

Because, really, isn't the ideal girl one with the body of a 20 year old, the life experience of a 25 year old and the dedication of a 65 year old?

Or, you could just take it for what it's worth and hook-up one of our friends with one of her cute friends and the two of you could run around town making out with 20-year olds and probably be the happiest guys I know, as long as you don't try taking them to any bars that check id's. But why do that anyway? Get them drunk at home - that's where the beds are anyway.”

No word on whether or not he’s decided to heed my wisdom. But I’ll let you know how it turns out. In the meantime, don’t be afraid to ask me for advice of your own. I’ve got tons of this crap, uh, I mean sound advice.

Tuesday, September 20

Some Things Including Vomit, Genocide and The Easy Way to Prison

I’ve racked my brain and tried and tried to come up with something I care less about than the outcome of the Kelly Monaco / John O’Hurley dance-off tonight, and the only thing I could come up with is “what my boss will be having for dinner.” I care less about what my boss will have for dinner, than the outcome of tonight’s dance-off. And I’m not even 100% comfortable saying that.

a packet of Swiss Miss hot chocolate + a large cup of coffee + a large cup of ice = a tickle in my pants

The guy at the deli today cut my sandwich so that half was all the top crust of the bread and half was all the bottom crust of the bread. Who does that? That’s no way to cut a sandwich. It’s like offering half of your black and white cookie to someone and splitting it along the black/white line. It just makes no sense.

The Daily Dump has hit a new low. I was glancing at my site meter this morning (you know, in that casual way people do, sort of like remembering to check your fifth email account, because no one really cares if anyone’s visiting their site anyway . . .) and there I am, the sixth heading on a list resulting from a search term that can only be described as “Why?”

The guy in the lobby of my building with the broom and dustbin on a handle is deft at sweeping up little things off the floor. You may say, “Well anyone could do that.” But I defy anyone to do it with such precision and grace.

Headline of the day: Brits Prefer 'Genocide' Over 'Holocaust' Good to know.

The Girlfriend got picked last week to serve on a jury this week for a cocaine distribution felony. She finished up her service today and called me after she left the court house. She summed up her civil service by saying: “I think there were four educated people on the jury. And there was one retired guy who kept voting ‘not guilty,’ but couldn’t give a reason beyond, ‘That’s just what I think.’ It was obviously because this is the first exciting thing to happen to him in months and he wanted it to last as long as possible. There’s no way he really thought that guy was innocent – I knew he was guilty from the first time I saw him.”

Ladies and Gentlemen, our legal system.

Young Stud or Home Renovations?

Had a wonderful party on Long Island this past weekend for my grandfather’s 80th birthday. Family members flew in from the West coast, drove out from Queens and even took horrible train rides on the Long Island Rail Road sitting next to puffy looking Asian men who continually fell asleep on their shoulder (me).

There was great homemade food (plus the famed coconut shrimp, which thankfully were as good as remembered) and my mom couldn’t tear me away from the homemade sangria. It got to the point where, when it came time for The Girlfriend and I to take the train home, I considered the prospect carrying the half-full jug with me back to the city using the logic, “Well no one’s going to drink it here.” This is why my mom worries about me.

The best part, though, was about 15 minutes before the guests were scheduled to arrive, my immediate family is congregating in the kitchen. Conversation turns to how The Girlfriend has yet to meet the “other” relatives on my mother’s side of the family, namely the ones from Queens.

My sister comments: “Oh, you’re in for a surprise.”

My aunt comments: “You’re going to be thank us for being so normal.”

My mother comments: “You’re going to love us, because we’ll protect you.”

My father comments: (Head tilted to the side, smirk on face and a knowing chuckle . . . My father doesn’t say much.)

You would think they were a bunch of ex-cons or werewolves when really they just drink a lot and say things at the dinner table like, “Screw you, you wouldn’t know a good manicotti if it came out your ass.”

So when they show up The Girlfriend unconsciously grabs my arm, trying to keep a smile on her face. My 65 year old cousin Phyllis, after surveying the renovations my parents have done to the house, comes over and says, “The house is gorgeous! Don’t get me wrong, a young stud is nice too; but this is fantastic.”

Priceless.

Monday, September 19

More Biased, Unqualified Opinions and the Emmy's

Got all backed up at work today dealing with other issues, namely helping a couple of friends who are having relationship issues by doling out inane and unhelpful “relationship” counseling, such as this piece of solid advice to a friend who was stuck in the rough spot of going on a couple of dates with a girl he actually likes:

“Feelings blow. They always make things more complicated than they seem (so if they seem complicated, they're really super complicated.) I don't see any way out of this other than going straight for third base the next time you two are alone. You need to see if there's a real "connection" here or not. Otherwise you're just wasting your time with "talking" and "feeling" and "enjoying each other's company." And let's face it, if all we wanted out of life was talking and feeling, we'd all date each other.”

So just so you don’t think I was neglecting The Dump for frivolous reasons, there you go.

Onto what I wanted to talk about today, last night’s annual celebration of giving out TV awards to the wrong people! Even though I didn’t actually “watch” the Emmy’s*, I see no reason why I can’t provide insightful comments on the show, the participants and everything else that goes along with the production. So, here’s “My Unqualified Emmy Award Commentary.”

Worst Miscarriage of Voting Rights

BEST COMEDY SHOW

Arrested Development FOX
Desperate Housewives ABC

Everybody Loves Raymond CBS (WINNER)
Scrubs NBC
Will & Grace NBC

The fact that the fourth best comedy on this list won is almost as insulting as “Desperate Housewives” being on this list in the first place. Has anyone (who isn’t a mother) ever even laughed at “Desperate Housewives?” And “Everybody Loves Raymond” was a good show, but when does it stop being funny that Ray wants to go golfing and Deborah won’t let him? By the 7th season? I think so.

The bottom line is, if all of these shows conflicted on your Tivo’s season pass, which one would win? And you can’t tell me the answer is “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Patty Heaton got too old and the daughter didn’t get old enough, case closed.

Grossest Miscalculation of The Facts

This quote from Matthew Fox?

"No, I didn't expect this to happen. Historically, shows do not win the Emmy in their first year," Fox said with a firm look. "I've been very selective about what roles I've decided to take, from 'Party of Five' to 'Lost.'"

Don’t get me wrong, I love “Lost.” But is Matthew maybe confusing being “selective” with being “unwanted?” Or maybe I should just keep my mouth shut and tell everyone that the reason I’m not writing for Esquire right now is that I’m very selective.

No Wait, THIS Is The Grossest Miscalculation Of Facts

That “The Amazing Race” won best reality TV show. We’ve been over this: If you’re giving away awards for actual, good, not porn-esque reality shows, it doesn’t get better than “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.” THEY GIVE HOUSES TO DESERVING FAMILIES FOR CHRIST’S SAKE! The only way “The Amazing Race” could compete is if it was “The Amazing Race To Cure Cancer,” or “The Amazing Race to End Violent Fascist Regimes.”

(However, I would be a fan of adding another category; something like, “Best ‘Reality’ Show” so shows like, “The Biggest Loser” and “Being Bobby Brown” can be recognized. And when is the right time to give “Blind Date” it’s lifetime achievement award? These are issues the academy really needs to address. “Blind Date” has been mismatching losers and making fun of them in witty pop-up blurbs for years now.)

Biggest Insult to Peter Sellers

The Life and Death of Peter Sellers wins for Best Writing, Best Directing, and Geoffrey Rush wins Best Actor for his portrayal of Peter Sellers . . . but Warm Springs wins for Best Made for TV Movie? So what they’re saying is, The writing was fantastic, the directing was superb and Geoffrey Rush’s performance was impeccable, but the story just wasn’t that good.

Loudest Wake-Up Call

To Ed Harris, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Helen Hunt, Aidan Quinn, Joanne Woodward and Dennis Farina.

YOU LOST TO MASTERPIECE THEATRE!

Robin Wright Penn is excluded because she’s too young to know better and Paul Newman is excluded because at least he won for Best Supporting Actor; and also who can say anything bad about Paul Newman? It’s friggin Paul Newman.

Warmest Congratulations to a Woman Whose Name I Always Mispronounced

I’ve been mispronouncing your name in the “Law & Order” credits for years now, but you were great in “Lackawanna Blues.” In the words of on commenter on the S. Empatha’s imdb message board:

“CONGRATULATIONS! I enjoyed you immensely in "LAKAWANA BLUES". The movie took me back to a time when people still had 'RESPECT' and were willing to help one another. Again, Congratulations, you deserve many more Emmy's. AL Bryant”

Well said, Al.

________________________________

*I did make it home in time for the “Who Died This Year” montage, and how Dana Elcar’s death went unnoticed by me is admittedly indefensible. Pete Thornton deserves more from The Daily Dump. (I’m sure his family would be happy to hear that.) In fact, Pete Thornton deserves a creepy photo collage.


Friday, September 16

Matters of Presidential Duty

President Bush, bored by the UN Summit yesterday, wrote the following note to Condolliza Rice apparently requesting a bathroom break in the middle of the proceedings.













Reuters may have gotten the first shot, but I got my hands on photos of the rest of the exchange:

















































Five minutes later:

























After coming back from bathroom:


Thursday, September 15

Why Is There A Whore On My Stoop?

Memo to the prostitute sitting on my stoop this morning:


Why are you on my stoop smoking a menthol cigarette at 9:15am? I understand it’s a lovely day, and my stoop is a fine stoop. I’ve been known to sit on my stoop from time to time, drinking scotch, muttering comments about the passersby just as they are out of earshot. But where did you come from with your hot pink accessories smelling of burnt tires? I had to step around you like a large box of dry goods sitting unpacked in a grocery store aisle. Is that any way to start a day?

Now, don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I don’t respect your profession. I do. In fact, I was once solicited by a hooker who was driving around in a black SUV. (That’s how you should go about it!) She pulled up next to me as I was walking down a dark side road and said, “Where are you going?”

“Home,” I answered.

“Want some company?” she asked. I could tell she was a hooker, though, because she had on lots of jewelry and was listening to Madonna. So I said no. But I look back fondly on the experience because I know it will probably be the only time in my life that I get hit on, which feels good whether it is business related or not.

So you see, it’s not that I have anything against whores. I loved “Leaving Las Vegas.” I love drunks too. And who knows, you may have been drunk as well, but the point is whores on my stoop is where I have to draw the line. This is the upper east side. We can’t have hookers hanging around on stoops. There are children, babies in this neighborhood whose immune systems aren’t fully developed yet. They deserve the right to dictate the terms by which they first encounter a hooker, whether it be a bachelor party or mix-up with a disputed charge at a Korean massage parlor.

It is a known fact that all of God’s children are unique and special, even the ones who trade sex acts for drugs. But even when the stress of fornicating for a living weighs on you to the point where all you can do is light a cigarette, hold your head in your hands and wonder what bad choices in your life got you here (Was it the crack? Was it the internet dating?), there’s something very important you have to remember: a stoop is a very special place. It’s an entrance into one’s home. And unfortunately, I’ve got bigger things to think about here than a social conscience or so-called grace; like property values and a disease free stoop.

So next time, please move two stoops down to the building that smells like cheese.

Thank you.

P.S. If, by some chance, you were not a prostitute – I suggest you consider changing your style. Because you really look like a prostitute.

Weiner Pulls Out: Voters Shocked, Unsatisfied

New York mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner has decided to forego a run-off and concede victory to Fernando Ferrer.

(I just really wanted to use that headline my friend John and I came up with. Otherwise I don't really care for Weiner. I'm sure he's a stand-up guy. But Weiner just doesn't do it for me.)

Wednesday, September 14

Spears to name child "London" after city where she met Federline. Federline says, "But we hooked up in Cleveland first."

She totally stole my idea. The Girlfriend and I were going to name our first born “Syracuse.” Guess we’ll have to go with option two now: “Dirty Futon,” after the first place we ever made love.

Politics Are Hard

I don’t know exactly why I don’t like politics. i think it’s partly because they are so obscure and complicated and hard. Actually, I guess I do know exactly why I don’t like politics. it’s not like most other topics that you can make up stuff as you go along to support your argument (“Diane Lane is the hottest over-40 actress in Hollywood because Michelle Pfeiffer has a bigger head.”) You need to know facts and history and people’s names, and if I had to list the three things I have the most trouble remembering in the world it would be 1. facts, 2. history, 3. a time when I was happy and life was simple and 3a. people’s names. Basically, me and politics are like oil and water – and everyone knows oil doesn’t know shit about water.

But I try to stay abreast on these things, if for no other reason than to be able to laugh at Jon Stewart’s jokes. So last night i watched some of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which, as I understand it, is a bunch of people asking a potential supreme court nominee a bunch of questions about things he won’t talk about, thereby gathering no information that might change the outcome of the situation. But I wasn’t really paying attention because I was on the internet trying to find that video where Trishelle from the real world is topless sitting at a table with Ron Jeremy.

Anyway, here’s some things I think I heard while not really paying attention – but like I said, I’m no political well source.

  • I refuse to answer any questions about abortion. This committee is not about easy women being murders. It’s about being impartial.
  • “Gay marriage . . . it’s a tough situation, very involved and complicated, drawing from many legal and historical precedents; but the real problem is technically they’re not “people,” sooo . . .”
  • “Katrina exposed serious problems in our response capability at all levels of governm –“ Oh . . . sorry, my mistake. God was talking to President Bush there, not me.
  • If elected, I look forward to having job security for the rest of my life despite possible poor or irrational performance.
  • No, I won’t let my acting career get in the way. I haven’t done anything good since “As Good As It Gets” anyway.










Some more evidence of my political incisiveness

An email conversation between my friends and I concerning the conference at the United Nations.

James: Best sentence starter ever: "Bush, addressing more than 160 presidents, prime ministers and kings..." Kings? How do we still deal with kings?

Me: It seems like being king has to be the best job in the world. For the most part, they don't make any important decisions. They are ridiculously wealthy and traditionally no one makes fun of them because THEY'RE THE FRIGGIN KING! And they have hookers sometimes, don't they? Awesome job. What's even more of a farce is thinking that any king on the face of the earth gives two, let alone one, shit what our president has to say. I bet all the kings sit together in a little section of the conference hall saying things like, "Who's this guy again? And when does the buffet open..."

James: It would be great if the kings still acted like kings, with goblets and swords and capes made from the skin of a lion and a crown of iron on their heads. And when they heard something they didn't like they would throw an axe at you. THAT would be government I could respect

Brendan: I picture them sitting around whistling "It’s Good To Be King" by Tom Petty, admiring their picture on their country's money and thinking about what peasant girl is going to get "knighted" on the flight home.

Me: You know where we went wrong? When we started using the term "king" so lightly. Like "Smoothie King" or "Burger King." That's when we really lost all hope of ever having a really cool monarchy here. Well that and when they drafted "the constitution."

Tuesday, September 13

Gator Terrorizes Los Angeles, Gives Me Idea.

L.A.: Report of Gator Capture Is Hoax

Authorities on Tuesday dismissed a claim that a wrangler had nabbed a 7-foot-long alligator named "Reggie" from a city lake, where he had been dumped several months ago and repeatedly avoided capture.

Earlier Tuesday, a man claiming to be wrangler Jay Young, who had been hired by the city, told several media outlets, including The Associated Press, that he had caught the alligator overnight.

That story was cast into doubt when the promised delivery of the alligator to the Los Angeles Zoo never happened.

Reached by phone at his Colorado gator farm later Tuesday, Young said he has not been in Los Angeles recently and that he hadn't called the media earlier in the day. He said the caller apparently was someone impersonating him.

Young had been hired by the city last month and promised to capture the alligator within a few days. He left town on Aug. 18, unable to deliver on his promise.

Poor Jay Young. Guy makes a bold promise to catch an escaped alligator, doesn’t get the job done and leaves Los Angeles a disgraced failure – without anyone really knowing what happened or caring. Until now! Now he’s got Yahoo beat writers calling him out as a national disappointment. People are hanging around the water cooler, shaking their heads saying, “Should have called the Crocodile Hunter. He would have captured that damn beast! Not this Jay Young clown. He couldn’t catch a cold in December.”

But the story gave me an idea: I’m going to call the FBI pretending to be President Bush telling them that I captured Osama Bin Laden.

Me: “Uh, FBI? This is President Bush hehe . . . Uh, yeah I’ve got Osama Bin Laden here. That’s right, caught him hehe. Where was he? He was, uh, in a cave. Near my ranch. I was just jogging by at seven and a half mph, saw that crazy hat of his sticking out of the grass. Went over an’ corralled him myself. Sure, I’ll bring him in. As soon as I’m done with my sandwich.”

Then, when “The President” doesn’t show up with Osama, it’ll make national news. I’ll have single handedly brought back to the country’s consciousness the fact that Osama Bin Laden is still at large and the President will be a national disgrace.

This is my best idea all day.

Monday, September 12

Malpractice! Doctor Uses Yahoo Instead of Craigslist To Get Laid.

Ah, The Old "Married In A Previous Life" Trick

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A Manhattan fertility specialist has been sued by two women who say he broke their hearts after meeting them through an online dating site [Yahoo Personals]on which he pretended to be single.

In their lawsuits the two women, Tiffany Wang and Jing Huang, accused Dr. Khaled Zeitoun, 46, of pretending to be single and using mind games to entice them into sexual relationships with tales of past lives.

Wang says that in May 2002, he asked her to marry him but only proposed "to see the look of joy on her face."

This is unbelievable. My friend Scott actually tried this exact same tactic on The Girlfriend when we were drunk at a pub in London.




















And Dr. Zeitoun, two words for you: Craigslist. Everyone knows the girls on Yahoo will type it, but they won’t do it. The girls on Craigslist will type it, do it and videotape it for their collection.

Drugs and a Great Bolognese Sauce

The Girlfriend and I have been having a rough time of it lately, what with her being emotionally irrational and me being right all the time. It weighs on us. Then football season started and things went from bad to worse. (I mean in our relationship, not in general. Because things always get brighter when football season starts.)

So for a little relationship therapy, we went out on Saturday night (together) for some drinks and dessert at a restaurant right near my apartment. We sat at a table right in front of wide open French doors overlooking the activity on the sidewalk, had a bottle of wine and coffee and, in lieu of a dessert, The Girlfriend got a plate of spaghetti. That’s just good common sense to her.

Over the course of the couple of hours as we sat there making fun of people who walked by, The Girlfriend began to notice some suspicious activity taking place at the neighboring restaurant, a seemingly more upscale Italian restaurant, which we had never dined at because it was seemingly upscale.

The scene was two teenagers (one guy one girl) probably about 17 or 18 years old, but likely much younger because I refuse to accept what teenagers look like these days. They were joined by an older guy (21?) and all three were incessantly rubbing their noses.

The Girlfriend, of course, was convinced they were harvesting organs and trading them for coke. I laughed it off, much the same way I laugh off all important social ailments, and continue on with more important conversations such as how there must be no more fun experience than being pushed around in a stroller.*

After a few minutes it became clear that she was distracted, though, as she wasn’t looking at me when I was talking and didn’t say anything when I posed her a question (except when I tested her by saying, “So we’ll just go home and have sex?” and she replied, without looking at me, “Nah.” I swear, you can’t make these things up.) Suddenly she says, “Look! I just saw a couple go in there and come out five minutes later. And they’re the third couple to do that in the past 10 minutes! That place is totally a drug front. It’s a mafia run drug front.”

For some reason, I immediately buy into this – most likely because the majority of the excitement on the Upper East Side comes from Jersey guys getting into fights outside bars or playing “Which one has STD?” with the groups of girls walking by in their club attire.

For the next hour we become increasingly baffled at the vast array of people going into the restaurant and coming out five minutes later, looking no more full than when they went in. By the time we’re ready to leave, we’ve practically talked ourselves into going into the restaurant just to see what happens, to see if there might be some sort of code word we had to give them to get the drug order instead of the veal scaloppini. “Good evening, is the table in the back available?” “Do you have the special shrimp tonight?” “So I hear you’re Ecstasy is quite good…”

We leave our restaurant, and as we walk towards the neighboring upscale drug front restaurant, we can’t believe what we are confronted with: an entrance to a tiny liquor store right next to the restaurant entrance, which we couldn’t see from our table. I don’t know if we were more embarrassed at our cavalier assurance that we had discovered a drug outfit all by ourselves or disappointed that there wasn’t a mafia run drug restaurant operating in my neighborhood.

Either way, one thing’s for sure: The Girlfriend is NOT going to find it funny that I referred to her as being “emotionally irrational.”

____________________________

* The Girlfriend really ran with this at the time, suggesting, with a scary sincerity, we construct something like a mattress on wheels to roll her around the Upper East Side.

Further Proof That The NY Times Uses Big Words

There have been groups of people outside the Wall St. subway station giving away copies of the NY Times as some sort of promotion. I’ve never seen so many New Yorkers turn down something free.

Everyone initially reaches for it, and then it’s almost as though you can see them think, “If I take this, do I have to read it? Do I really want to carry it into my office only to have it take up three-quarters of the trash bin at my desk?”

Now, if it was a NY Post . . . you just try to turn down a NY Post. It’s like news crack.

Friday, September 9

OMG, Trey SO deserved to get shot.

There was a scene in the series premier of “Rome” on HBO where, in some sort of ancient Roman sacrificial ceremony, a topless woman stands beneath a platform holding a live bull, and a soldier slits the bull’s throat, raining blood down upon the woman who can only move after having been thoroughly saturated.

That’s the best way I can describe how The Girlfriend feels at the start of the football season. Just naked and helpless and covered in blood with nowhere to go for help.

Which is why it was odd that she chose to spend the night at my apartment yesterday, the night of the first football game of the season. (Actually, it’s not that odd. I didn’t tell her a football game was on until after she came over, at which time she said something like, “I hate you. No really.” I’d like to say that I don’t blame her, but in a way I do.)

After having an argument about it, which wasn’t an audible argument so much as an argument of subtle gestures aimed at pissing the other person off without ever saying why you were pissing the other person off, it was settled that I would buy her take-out (like giving a kaleidoscope to an autistic child), we would watch the season premier of “The OC,” and then we could watch football. Or I could watch football. And she would pout as quietly as possible off to the side of the television.

“The OC” . . . what can I say? I don’t really watch the show. I watched a few episodes of it while I was in London a few months ago but only because it was on right before the Greatest Reality Television Show In The World, “The Games,” where B-list British celebrities (one was described as “Former Pop Star” Chesney Hawkes) compete in Olympic style events for . . . nothing at all. Maybe it was for money, I don’t know. And I didn’t care. I was addicted. I skipped going to the Tate Modern museum to watch the finale. True story. (I went to the museum another say, stop ridiculing me.)

Anyway, “The OC” was beyond ridiculous. One of them is wanted for an attempted murder he didn’t even commit, so to “take his mind off it” the gang goes to the beach and frolics in the water? It would have been more plausible for them all to sit down in their bathing suits, pour water on their half-naked bodies and have a serious discussion about the implications of being convicted of attempted murder and the possibility of taking a plea bargain for attempted manslaughter, with a sentence recommendation.

But, as with all good drugs, by the end of the show I found myself actually caring, leading to this exchange between The Girlfriend and I sitting next to each other on the couch:

Me: (leaning in to the TV) “I wish I knew why Marissa shot Trey . . .”

TG: “I don’t.”

And I don’t think I want to watch “The OC” anymore.

__________________________

Quote of the Day:

“Good job honey. You’re the best.”

- The Girlfriend, as she’s reading something at the computer, praising me after I jump off the couch cheering because Tom Brady completed a pass to Ben Watson, both players on my fantasy football team.

Thursday, September 8

A Pod to Call My Own

If there's one thing Apple does well, it's make things obsolete. Like one of my most expensive purchases in the last two years (seriously, I spent less on my couch) which is a Generation Three iPod - the technological equivalent of an Apple 2C at this point, which was only good for making those cards you fold in half twice and playing “The Oregon Trail.” (Which makes me wonder – would it be that hard to put “The Oregon Trail” on iPods? Is it so much more complicated than “Brick” or “Solitaire?” I can almost guarantee that sales would double. Almost.)

The new line of IPods has color screens, photo capabilities and a 15 hour battery life, which is roughly 13.5 more hours than mine runs before dying. It also comes with unfrayed headphones that don’t shock your ears when you run too close to the heart rate monitor handlebars on the treadmill. Which is awesome because I only paid about $100 more for mine.

Apple even outdid themselves in the overproduction department this time around, totally replacing the IPod mini, which i think went on the market about two months ago, with the IPod Nano (aka the IPod really mini.) And they’ve finally gotten over their latent white supremacy and started offering the IPod Nanos in black. Of course it’s just the small, inferior ones they offer in black, but all great movements start somewhere.

The most intriguing development, though, is their new cross-promotion IPods – the next step in the orgy of multimedia interbreeding. It started innocently enough with a U2 IPod, loaded with every track ever recorded by U2 and the Irish national anthem; but now it’s expanded beyond just music. Now there is the Harry Potter IPod, loaded up with all of the Harry Potter audio books and inscribed on the back with some sort of figure that I guess has something to do with a wizard or a spell or some creature like a Wookeybog that all the cool kids who read know about.












Anyway, unlike other technological advances in the past (steam engines, open heart surgery, condoms) this is something I can actually use. Imagine: Apple and me, teaming up to create “The Daily Dump IPod” – loaded up with all of my posts, read by me, and updated daily through iTunes.

I have composed a letter to Apple pitching them the idea:

Dear Apples:

It has recently come to my attention that a product of yours, the iPod, which I believe stands for “internet pod,” has been gaining popularity. I further understand that in order to promote your product, you have begun targeting smaller consumer groups such as fans of the Harry Potter book series.

To that end, I would like to present you now with a remarkable opportunity to team up with me and my website, The Daily Dump, in offering “The Daily Dump iPod,” full of all of my blog posts read by none other than me. this is a fantastic opportunity to reach the 25 readers who visit my site DAILY! I believe you will also fund my web site’s content new and exciting, as your listeners could follow along as I ridicule unattractive and dim-witted people and complain about my startlingly stable and fortunate life.

Also, I would like to include “The Oregon Trail” on “The Daily Dump iPod.”

I hope you appreciate the potential of this venture as much as I do.

Sincerely,

The Belligerent Intellectual
(Just kidding, my business name is Dan.)

I’ve put together a prototype of The Daily Dump iPod for my readers. Sign up in the comments section and I’ll be sure that, once Apple gets this off the ground, you will be the first to receive one.


















(The Dawson’s Creek logo works perfectly with my current iPod name: Joey Podder. And, much to The Girlfriend’s dismay, I’m not kidding.)