Thursday, September 30, 2004
I never thought this could happen to me, but then again I've always had low self-esteem. I think it started in grade school, when the girls would tease me mercilessly. I learned later - too much later - that that meant they liked me, but being a typically self-conscious preteen, coupled with a stepfather who would hurl drunken insults at me every night - well, shit, he would tell me I was ugly and -
Hey, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to unload on you like that. I don't know, Penthouse, you just seem so easy to talk to. Listen, I know that you're a glossy magazine appearing monthly around the world, and I'm a divorced accountant who fears deep down that he jerks off too much, but do you want to get coffee some time? Just hang out, rap about stuff?
Okay, I understand you're busy. Look, here's my number. Give me a call when you're free.
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Thank you for taking the time to submit your humorous piece to Reader's Digest.
We apologize that it took so long for us to reply, but as you can imagine, we get thousands of submissions every month, and it takes our staff a long time to sort through them all.
However, after careful review, we have decided that your story does not fit the criteria for publication for several reasons:
A) Although our "Humor in Uniform" section has printed stories from almost every kind of uniformed employee - from army, navy, and air force to police officer, security guard, and dog-catcher - we do not feel that wearing a Batman costume on a nightly basis and "patrolling the streets" qualifies as "uniformed patrol."
B) In its seventy-five year history, Reader's Digest has never printed the phrase "dog's cunt," and we don't find your piece is compelling enough to warrant a change in such a long-standing editorial policy.
and C) Frankly, we've been scratching our heads trying to puzzle out the humor in your piece anyway. Is it that you accidentally kicked a chihuahua into a garbage compactor? Our audience is very sensitive to the plight of helpless animals, and might be angered at such a callous display of cruelty.
Or is it that the prostitute was tricked into having sex with you in the mistaken assumption that you were an undercover officer about to "run her in"? If so, frankly we find that even more disturbing and are strongly tempted to place a call to your city's authorities.
Thank you very much for taking the time to submit your Humor in Uniform piece, and please feel free to keep submitting.
Wednesday, September 29, 2004
If you don't live in NYC, these are papers that are given away at subway entrances all over the city. They both contain the same exact slightly-reworded stories ripped straight from the AP wires.
Anyway, I was thinking about those Sunday Times commercials, where the smug yuppie couples say, "I read the Times for the crossword puzzle." "I go straight for Arts & Leisure."
And I was wondering what a similar commercial for AM Daily would be:
"I read it for the second before I use it to pick up my dog's poop."
"I like crossword puzzles, but I only know twenty words."
"I HURT MY HEAD IN A TRUCK ACCIDENT! I LIKE ICE CREAM! I NEED TO CHANGE MY - OOH, THAT'S A SHINY OBJECT!"
"I am related to the editor of AM Daily."
"I like my gossip three days old, and my pictures slightly out-of-focus."
"I go straight for the park bench, where I use it as a blanket."
"I like the hooker ads. Oh wait, that's the Village Voice."
"I'm eating twenty pounds of it. Guinness World Records, here I come!"
"If I hold something in front of my face, that creepy guy on the V train can't make eye contact with me."
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Today on the subway, I watched as a homeless guy tried to panhandle from another homeless guy.
All I know is, if you feel guilty about blowing off homeless guys, don't any more. They do it to each other.
The only thing that could have been better is if the homeless guy got all indignant: "Hey, I don't not work my ass off all day so I can give it to another guy who doesn't work can just take it. I know there's programs you can go to - they're all the same programs I also blow off."
I belong to a couple Fantasy Sports leagues.
And what I've learned is that I'm just as bad at pretend sports as I am at real sports.
The only difference is, no one online can see you cover your face when the ball flies at you.
It's The Andy Borowitz Show, and it's hosted by NPR/CNN personality Andy Borowitz.
If you don't want to read my preamble, there's show info a couple paragraphs down.
I was told it's a show with a "political flavor," which means I'll be talking about my opinions on the issues (you'd usually have to wait until I get loud and drunk at a bar for that!).
Actually, to be honest I'm not 100% sure what my political leanings are. A couple weeks ago, I hung out with some of my activist friends, and I felt like I'm just to the right of Genghis Kahn. Then I went to Georgia for a few days and I suddenly felt like I was to the left of Michael Moore. I really envy people who have a clear, firm conviction about the world.
To me, you can look at the political scene in terms of sports. The right wing is like the NFL. The right-wing talk shows, they're all very aggressive and "it's all about WINNING. We've got to PUSH this November and get to the LINE OF SCRIMMAGE and KNOCK DOWN KERRY! I want to see BLOOD ON THE GRIDIRON OR DON'T COME HOME!"
Whereas, the left wing is a lot like the WNBA: "We're creating the alternative to include everyone else. Sure, we may not be as well-funded as our big-money corporate counterpart, but we've got the moral advantage."
Me, I'm a Mets fan. I just want to be left alone and live in peace.
Hear more informed opinions from other comics at:
THE ANDY BOROWITZ SHOW!
Tuesday, September 28th
@ The Marquee
356 Bowery (between Great Jones and E. 4th)
Showtime 8 pm, doors open at 7:30 pm
* Liam McEneaney (Comedy Central)
* Jonathan Ames (Author, "Wake Up, Sir!", NPR's "The Next Big Thing", Letterman)
* Janine DiTullio (former writer, Late Night with Conan O'Brien)
* Ed Helms (The Daily Show)
Political comic Andy Borowitz, from CNN's "American Morning" and NPR's "Weekend Edition" brings you a little post-RNC, pre-election comedy relief. And with the right wig, he looks eerily like John Kerry.
Monday, September 27, 2004
In mysteries of mist and moor.
Soldier sprawled like sawdust strewn
Naked on the barroom floor.
Red rockets blare behind those eyes,
Armies marching lockstep in his ear.
A true patriot to once more rise
For one last charge into one last beer.
Better men than me into battle gone,
Better men than me shall fall
In the desperate war against the dawn
And the bartender's last call.
Friday, September 24, 2004
My problem at the antiwar rallies is that, as much as I'm against the war, I'm also against my fellow protestors. Sorry, but nobody likes a hippy.
If your average Middle American sees a guy with long hair and a beard getting dragged away by cops screaming "THS IS WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE!" he's going to say, "Looks like Democracy needs to get a job."
MARY JANE WANNA
Smoking weed is not a revolutionary act. It isn't even cool. You know how I know? Because my parents used to do it when they were my age. And not only that, but they gave it up.
If it wasn't even cool enough for my parents, why would I do it?
I've got some news for you: "The Man" wants you smoking weed.
Because it's the best way to keep the people most likely to actually get off their asses and do something on their couch, watching kung-fu movies and eating Chinese food.
The man doesn't want you angry and clear-headed - he wants you fat and passive.
THE AMAZING RACE
I genuinely dislike Bush. I'd rather go through a thresher than another four years of this shit.
My problem is that, as much as I am anti-Bush, I'm not really pro-Kerry.
I think I'd support anyone the Democrats nominated.
If they put The Grinch up as their candidate, I'd end up rationalizing it somehow:
"Well, he is very anti-Christmas. But that will...ensure he keeps religious seperate from the state. Also, when he steals...presents...from Cindy Lou Who - he's - uh - redistributing the wealth. Yeah, making sure the richest one percent give their fair share. Sure, his heart is six sizes too small, but Cheney has heart problems and no one questions his fitness for public office."
Thursday, September 23, 2004
Could you imagine waking up from a blackout and being like, "Oh God what did I do last night?"
"Sir, yessir, you slaughtered thousands of enemy soldiers and let the streets run with rivers of their blood."
"Man, I've got to stop drinking whiskey."
If I was a general, and I had the power of life or death and command, I don't think anyone would want me commanding them while I was drunk:
"Sir, yessir. As per your orders, we forced their women to make out with each other. Then we all sang Jimmy Buffet songs at karaoke night, and then we fucked off because we were forced to admit that we couldn't understand you, sir."
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
I did. So I called them.
I had this conversation with the receptionist:
RECEPTIONIST: Muzak, how may I help you?
ME: Yeah, could you put me on hold?
R: How can I help you?
M: Could you put me on hold?
M: I - I want to see what it's like.
R: Is there an extension?
M: No, I'd just like to be on hold.
R: I'm afraid I can't do that.
M: Why not?
R: I - do you have an extension?
M: No, I just want -
R: I'm afraid I need an extension or a name, sir.
M: Let me talk to your supervisor.
R: All right sir, please hold.
So I'm on hold. And the Muzak corporation's hold music is... Cheap Trick.
I'm not sure what Cheap Trick's reaction to that would be, but I can guarantee that I want to be in the room when you tell them.
Tuesday, September 21, 2004
The first phase, we had to call funeral homes and make sure they were providing the services they were supposed to provide.
One of the funeral homes had this outgoing message:
"If this is an emergency, please hang up and call..."
I hope that if you're calling a funeral home, the emergency is over.
Were they getting this message: "Hey, I need help. Adam isn't dead. Send someoen over. He's ruining my funeral arrangements."
The second phase of the job was calling "potential funeral home customers" to see what kind of services they want funeral homes to provide.
In case you don't know what a "potential funeral home customer," is let me explain:
That is someone who is either about to be in dire need of a funeral, or someone who is taking care of same.
And I got to call these people and basically say, "Hey, no offense but when you die, do you want the funeral home to hire a band to entertain your loved ones?"
So I thought that it might be in good taste not to sound to "happy" when I called.
Pretty soon I got a note from my shift supervisor (SEE NOTE BELOW), saying "Your delivery needs some more pep. Try to be upbeat."
So my next call, I said, "HEY MR. JENKINS. WHEN YOUR WIFE KICKS IT, DO YOU WANT TO HAVE TO TAKE CARE OF FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS?!!!"
Well, I got a ntoe about that, too. So my next call: "Hell-o. I am Question-bot 6000."
That's when the Supervisor came down. And he said, "What do you get paid for? You get paid to get completes. "
"I don't get paid to get yelled at by some jackass with a GED and a Napoleon Complex," is what I did not say out loud, instead choosing to say it in the relative safety of my own head.
And that, children, is how Liam saved Christmas (What?).
Because in the long run, you'll be better off on welfare.
Monday, September 20, 2004
And I believe him, because nothing could be as much fun as a threesome looks.
In truth, if there's a Heaven, and if I somehow manage to make it in past the velvet rope, and I'm sitting there in tune with complete cosmis bliss, the one thought I would have would be, "Y'know what would make this perfect?"
But here's the thing - even if a threesome is only half as much fun as it looks, I'm still pretty sure I'd be happy. I'm still pretty sure I'd get my money's worth.
I think men can only imagine sex if there's somehow thousands of screaming fans.
Guys like to rate women based on what league they're in.
"Oh, that woman's out of my league."
"She's got one leg. She's totally in your league dude."
It's always sad to see a guy sent down to the Minors.
And not in the Michael Jackson sense. He starts to lose his speed. Starts striking out a lot. Gains a little around the middle.
He has to go out to Norwalk and hit on women who haven't had the Big League experience yet, just to keep his skills sharp.
Sometimes a guy will retire, and start coaching the younger guys coming up.
That's always a creepy guy in the bar. He's middle-aged. Balding. Drinking to avoid going home. And he'll come up to you and say something like, "Girl like that is easy."
"Seriously, you should buy her a bottle of perfume. She'll bark like a dog and clap like a seal."
"Right. I'm pretty sure that if I wanted that I'd be hitting on a woman at the circus. But thanks for the info - "
"You know what they used to call me when I was your age? 'The Big L'."
"What did the 'L' stand for?"
"They wouldn't tell me. But it had something to do with the ladies."
"Look, ignore my years of experience if you want, but the least you can do is buy me a beer as a thank you."
Great. I was not getting laid for free. Now I have to pay for it.
And the hell of it, this guy isn't even in the Minor Leauges. He isn't even in the Mexican Leagues.
He's maybe the mascot, but usually just a pretzel vendor.
Friday, September 17, 2004
Okay, I really had a mouse problem once. And all the signs were there.
Little mouse mess in the kitchen.
Started getting weird "Cheese of the Month" charges on my VISA bill.
I would get these late-night hang-up calls. I'd dial the number on my Caller ID, and a phone would start ringing under my sink.
I got these e-mails from "Squeaky@BehindtheFridge.com" - "BYOFILTH PARTY."
At first I tried ignoring the mice, but then they got behind a couple months on the rent, and I said "Okay, these mice must go."
So I went and got Poison.
Not Poison the substance; Poison the '80s hair-metal band.
I hired them to play a concert in my living room.
By the time they played "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," the entire block was cleared of mice.
I knwo what you're thinking; "Liam, hiring Poison to play your living room must be pretty pricey."
Yeah, but I consider it fifty bucks well-spent.
Thursday, September 16, 2004
You only feel good when you're spreading it around.
Like, BB King has a song that goes, "As long as I'm payin' the bills, I'm payin' the cost to be the boss."
Now, I wish I was the kind of guy who could get away with that kind of sentence. But I'd probably get to the word "bill" before any woman I date would smack me.
I think the best I could probably manage would be, "As long as I'm paying half the dinner check, I'm payin' the cost to get a word in edgewise."
Or maybe, "As long as I'm only two months behind on the bills, I'm payin' the cost to watch the ballgame in peace."
But I don't know if blues guys really get away with that. There's got to be a reason half their songs start "My woman done left me..."
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
HOW I PLAN TO START MY BLOCKBUSTER NEW NOVEL ABOUT TURN-OF-THE-CENTURY MIDWESTERN SMALL TOWN AMERICA
"EMPLOYEE AND STUDENT DISCOUNT 10 - 15%!!!"
First of all, why do they need to advertise the employee discount?
Was there a problem with the people behind the counter going, "Man it's lunch time and I'm hungry. Where can I go to pick up a sandwich?"
Maybe they're braggin. Like, "Ha! Ha! You might pay $2.99 for a tuna sub, but I only pay $2.70! All I have to do is make minimum wage in a go-nowhere dead-end job."
Then again I am leaning towards "Subway employees are that dumb."
TRUE STORY: I once ordered a BLT at Subway, and then got charged extra because bacon is a topping.
It took two counter people and a manager to sort it out.
Also, why is a student discount ten to fifteen percent off?
Is the size of the discount based on how good your school is?
"Hey sorry buddy, but that extra five percent is for Ivy Leaguers. Should've studied a little harder on your SATS. You might be able to afford a small bag of Lay's."
Tuesday, September 14, 2004
After seeing several other comics talking about this same commercial, though, I've come to the conclusion that
A) It's a pretty common premise, it being a commercial we all saw as kids and
B) If I saw a comic doing this joke after I wrote mine, I should be accusing him of stealing the premise. Since I don't think he did, I don't know why I...ah, fuck it.
Forget the comedy-ethics dilemma. Here's the rewritten version of this joke:
When I was a kid, there was an anti-drug commercial where a father barges into a kid's room with a cigar box full of drugs and says, "I found this in your room. Where did you learn to do this?"
And the kid replies, "I learned it from you, Dad! I learned it from watching YOU!"
And I was thinking, if the father does drugs, then why's he so angry?
"I know, and I told you if you ever got into my stash again, I'd kill you!"
"You told me you were out! Why the FUCK did you lie to me? And where did you get the money for this...Colombian Gold? I can barely afford the skunk shit! This better not have anything to do with the missing silverware!"
"Come on man, let me get a hit. Just one hit. I'll suck your dick."
Eh, maybe I should just let this joke go...
Monday, September 13, 2004
I see why insects eat their young. Because a child without a head is a child who will not stand in the middle of three broken jars of paint, in a large puddle of paint, and tell you he doesn't know how it happened.
If you've ever dealt with little kids, you know the most brilliant idea in the history of teaching is "nap time."
I used to think that it was because little kids get tired. No, it has nothign to do with what the kids need.
You don't look at a little kid running around, waving a stick, and screaming "I AM YUGIOH!!! I AM YUGIOH!!!" and think, "Man, he's exhausted. He'd better have a lie-down."
No, it's the adults who get tired. Adults need nap time to regroup. It's like a fighter going to his corner before round two.
Friday, September 10, 2004
Which just goes to show, there's a fine line between being a child and being a raving psychotic.
Why is it considered a virtue to be "young at heart?"
Does it mean you cry at the drop of a hat?
You talk to imaginary friends?
You put things you find on the floor in your mouth?
Who wants that in their lives?
I mean that seriously ladies - who wants that in their lives?
Because when I'm off my meds, I get very very lonely.
Okay, there's a good joke in there, somewhere. It's probably been done in a Garfield cartoon, though.
You aren't supposed to use the phrase "Going Postal," because it offends Post Office workers.
But I dated a woman who "went postal."
She made me wait on line for 45 minutes, and then told me her window was closed.
Thursday, September 09, 2004
You should never trust a hippy's judgment on anything.
The last time I trusted a hippy's judgment, I ended up at a Phish concert for what felt like eighteen consecutive hours.
It would have been longer, but I left halfway through the first song.
Also, you should never do anything suggested by a white guy with dreadlocks. Ever.
I was talking to a white guy with dreads once, and he said, "Everyone should use 'The N Word' all the time. That way, we disempower it."
I was like, "All right. You first. Then we can take you out of the gene pool before you reproduce."
Because, if a black guy killed a white guy with dreads for using the N Word - no jury on earth would convict him.
It would be the world's quickest defense:
"Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Sebastian was a white guy with dreadlocks - "
"NOT GUILTY. It was a mercy killing."
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
A few months ago, folks thought they were going to be number one.
Now, I love the Mets, but even I knew that was ridiculous.
The only way the Mets will take first place is if everyone else in baseball dies, including all the guys on Old-Timer's Day.
The only way the Mets will be a threat to anyone is if Art Howe somehow manages to get hold of a nuclear bomb.
I would say that cats are the ultimate metrosexuals;
They're graceful, they have that ballet-dancer walk, they are meticulous groomers, and you can just feel them judging you:
"Oh, she thinks she's sharp. Well, let's see if she's smart enough to see I shit in her shoe, meow meow meow."
And despite all their faults, women love them.
Okay, I think this could be funny if I act it out.
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
No, I tell a lie. No one works at Kinko's.
You show up, you put on the blue shirt, you avoid the customers.
If a customer traps you and actually tries to get you to do anything, you tell them their order will take 48 hours.
Anyway, I worked the laminating machine.
If you don't know, that's a machine where you put something in - BLAM! - it gets flattened and coated with hot plastic.
I laminated everything; tickets, licenses, pictures.
One guy came in with his diploma to be laminated.
He was a real prick about it, too: "This is a Harvard diploma. I bet you haven't seen one of those, so be careful with it."
I took a closer look; it was from the Harvard Driving School.
The sad thing was, he had majored in Philosophy.
Monday, September 06, 2004
I hate Bush. And I agree that he must go. But I don't like Kerry much either.
You know who Kerry is? He's that guy in high school. He wasn't the quarterback, but he was a second-stringer, so he still had the "popular connection."
He partied, he drank, he smoked weed.
And one day, he comes up to you and says, "Hey buddy. Listen, I didn't study for my bio test. Can I copy off of you?"
And you think, all right, he called me "buddy." So you say, "Sure."
And then, enxt thing you know, he's asking to copy off of you every class. Until you say, "I don't feel comfortable letting yo ucopy off me this time. Sorry."
And that's the last time he ever talks to you.
That's John Kerry. He's the guy who thinks that not wearing a jacket makes him a "cool" boss that you can be buddies with but not really.
The kind of guy who thinks that if people see him hanging out with a black guy, that lets him get away with saying borderline racist stuff.
The kind of guy who will start dating a woman the day after you break up with her, and when you call him on it, tells you that it's her choice.
They model themselves on the antiwar protestors of the '60s. Who admittedly effected real social change - they got Nixon elected President.
By the way, please note I'm not generalizing every protestor from that era as some ineffectual hippy; I have nothng but respect for the civil rights advocates of that time.
But the hippy antiwar guys - sorry, but nobody likes a hippy. Not even me, and I agree with those guys. And nobody out in the heart of America is ever going to turn on the news and see a bunch of masked anarchists setting fire to floats and beating cops and think, "Man, those kids really do have a point. I'd feel much safer if we did what they suggested."
No. America wants to feel safe. Not in the sense of being kept safe from the threat of terrorism - they really don't give a shit if NYC is blown up. I mean they do, but htey also know that in terms of symbolism, Montana is much less likely to be hit than New York City. Which, by the way, is a haven for Jews, gays, gangsta rappers, MTV, Catholics, S&M fetishists, and anyone else.
No, Americans are genuninely concerned with feeling safe in their homes and on the streets outside their homes. And to be honest, if it came down to a choice between Bush - who has demonstrated that he can get NYPD cops on the streets - or Kerry, who demonstartated that he can get anarchists on the streets, they're going to go with Bush.
If the protestors really want to get their message out htere, what they really want to do is get haircuts and wear suits. If Bush sees a motley group of folks dressed like they're on the way to a concert - even if it's a really good concert, he'll just smirk the other way knowing that he won't have to take them seriously. 500,000 in number or no.
On the other hand, if he looks out on a sea of what looks like a Young Insurance Adjusters' convention, he weill know that on the news it will look like his own base has turned against him.
He will know that nothing will win America's hearts faster than yung clean-cut people making a stand.
Thursday, September 02, 2004
I will probably find an Internet kiosk to post updates.
Just to keep you updated, last night George W. Bush was in my neighborhood. He was at a firehouse to watch the Republican Natinal Convention.
I think that's awesome, because that means that even Bush said, "I just can't go into Manhattan. I can't deal with all that fucking convention traffic."
The only thing that would have been better would be if Bush's speech tonight started, "Man, I'm just sick of talking about politics. Can we talk about baseball for a second?"
Actually, on second thought, there's a very scary chance that that was his first draft of the speech.
All right, I gotta go.
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
"Okay, well we tried."
"No, we didn't. And we're not going to."
That way, I can just give her the forty dollars I might spend on her and we can go our seperate ways, and I can use the money I save to buy ice cream. Because - and single women know this - ice cream will always guarantee you a good night.
I went on a disasterdate recently. We were both clearly bored, but because you can't just politely end a date after fifteen minutes, it was like we were double-daring each other to be rude.
"You ready to go to the show?"
"Are you sure?"
"Are you sure? "
"And then we'll go to a bar."
It was one of those evenings where - well, you know how it's a disaster if you don't even get a good-night kiss, you get a good-night handshake instead?
I didn't even get a handshake. Just a "Call you Monday or Tuesday."
No you aren't. No you aren't. You are not going to call me. Why pretend? You're not going to call me. Why? So we can have nothing to say to each other over the phone?
This is how really bad marriages get started.