Tower of Hubris

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

 

DUH...

And now, the answer to the question that has gripped the TOH readership for almost 26 hours: Did I or did I not shave my head?

Well folks, the answer is a definitive..."sort of". I chickened out of going the whole shaving-cream-and-razor route. There are a couple of reasons for this: 1) I've done it before and I'm inevitably left with little nicks and cuts all over my head, which is none too attractive, and 2) my skull is very Linus-esque, with all sorts of strange lumps and contours--again, not too attractive. But yeah, it's pretty much all gone--it looks like I shaved it clean a couple of weeks ago and it's started to grow back in.

So now, if humanly possible, I look even more like a meathead than I usually do. I tell you, it's difficult being so unspeakably brilliant* whilst simultaneously looking so ungodly stupid**. Of course, it's this fear of people thinking I'm a moron that leads me to insert words like "whilst" into everyday conversation. I also tend to reference "smart people" shit in public (e.g., "The situation in Liberia reminds me slightly of Milton's Paradise Lost, in that blah blah blah blah blah..."), even though I spend most of my free time drinking warm beer and playing MLB Slugfest 2003.

So, if you happen to see some fuzzy-headed clod lumbering down the street self-consciously quoting Baudelaire, it just might be me.


* Yes, that's sarcasm
** Yes, that's the complete and utter truth

posted by Finny Link

Monday, July 28, 2003

 

JANE'S UPDATE

Some of you may recall that, on July 13th, I devoted a number of paragraphs to my desperate fear that Strays, the new Jane's Addiction album, would suck donkey dick. If you have any interest in this sort of thing, you can scroll down and check out the entry titled "Summertime Rolls". Well, I have given the new album a number of listens and I can now declare that Strays is not terrible. There are even a few songs I would call "really great". But is it the life-altering aural experience I was hoping for (despite knowing it couldn't possibly be)? No. It's just a pretty good rock record. Dave Navarro is one of my two or three favorite guitar players in the world, Stephen Perkins' drumming is predictably stellar and, for a guy in his early 40s, Perry Farrell still sounds gloriously shrill. But Eric Avery is definitely missed. The new bass player dude is perfectly functional, but he sounds like your cookie-cutter studio bass player--capable as all hell, but lacking any distinct flair. There is one song, "Superhero", that is embarassingly bad and I'm worried it will get released as a single. But all in all, it's pretty okay--I'd give it a B-.

The main problem with the album, as I see it, is that it's lacking the element that made Jane's so special to begin with: drama. There are moments during a couple of the songs ("To Match the Sun", "The Price I Pay" and the title track, specifically) that flirt with the breadth and grandeur of "Three Days" and "Ted, Just Admit It", but they all stop well short of being genuinely transcendant. In a nutshell, nothing sounds particularly dangerous about Strays. I realize that we live in a different musical landscape now, and that we, as a culture, have been "shocked" into a state of sarcastic apathy. So expecting an album to feel genuinely "dangerous" is probably way too much to ask. Nevertheless, that's what I was hoping for.

In other news, I'm seriously considering shaving my head this afternoon.

Oh, and it appears that I have plans for Thursday night.

posted by Finny Link

Sunday, July 27, 2003

 

IT'S SO HARD TO SAY GOODBYE TO YESTERDAY

Okay, I'll admit it: I'm kind of disraught today. As I'm sure you've heard by now, Liza Minelli and David Gest are separating. Even typing those words get me choked up. I mean, if these two lovebirds can't make it, what chance do any of us have? Who could have known this marriage wasn't going to last--after all, you don't have Michael Jackson serve as your best man unless you know you've found your soulmate.

Shit, I can't even think about this anymore. I'm going to go down some valium and watch Liza and David's Larry King interview (I burned it ontoi a DVD). You know, to remind me of the days when the world made sense.

Tip your 40oz in fond remembrance, dawgs.

posted by Finny Link

Friday, July 25, 2003

 

PEOPLE ARE TALKING!

The great press for Portable Comedy at the Gershwin Hotel keeps rolling in! Check it out:

"Portable Comedy is so funny, it makes my jaw drop. Of course, my jaw is always kinda dropped, being that I'm a huge mouthbreather. But still, Portable Comedy rules."
--Ben Affleck

"We now acknowledge that the President's assertion in his State of the Union address that Saddam Hussein was attempting to negotiate a spot for himself on the Portable Comedy line-up was in fact erroneous. It was my responsibility to verify this information based on our intelligence and advise the President accordingly. I hold myself completely accountable for this lapse in communication."
--CIA Director George Tenet

"When America, the great whore mother of all that is unholy, rains waves of infidel comedy upon the Gershwin Hotel, the rivers will rise with the blood and maggots will chew through the hearts of all nonbelievers."
--Pat O'Brien, "Access Hollywood"

"Help! My apartment is on fire! I can't get out! Please, someone call the fire department! Help! For the love of christ, please help me!"
--my upstairs neighbor

"Hey, can you do me a favor and make an announcement at the beginning of your show? Tell the audience they're not allowed to use the bathroom to go Number Two. Last week, somebody left it all stinky and I had to clean it up. I can't be having that."
--Daryll, the Gershwin Hotel custodian

But don't just believe the hype--come see for yourself! Join me tonight, with my guests:

DAN CRONIN (He's appeared on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" and Comedy Central's "Premium Blend", people)

KRISTIN SCHAAL (She was featured on Comedy Central's "Project Searchlight")

JESSE JOYCE (National touring comic and head writer for JokeVision TV)

DAN ALLEN (As seen at Carolines and The Comic Strip)

ROBERT COHEN (Former host of the beloved "Shecky Eichmann Show")

STEVE IBACH (Regular at the Upright Citizens Brigade theatre)

DANNY LIEBERT (Author of the nationally syndicated column, "No Love, No Nothin'" and contributer to "Mirth of a Nation: Best American Humor" anthology)

And, the specifics:

PORTABLE COMEDY
FRIDAY, JULY 25th
THE GERSHWIN HOTEL
7 EAST 27th STREET
(b. 5th and Madison Ave.)
10:00pm
$7.00

Be there or be square.


Christian Finnegan,
loved in Belgium

posted by Finny Link

Thursday, July 24, 2003

 

BATCH O' LINKS

The following links were provided to me by Mr. John Batchley. Thank/blame him.

My favorite pastime.

My 2nd favorite pastime.

My idol.

My idol's idol.

And finally, for you marijuana smokers out there.

posted by Finny Link

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

 

PORTRAIT OF THE ARTIST STARING AT HIS COMPUTER SCREEN

Look, I don't know what to tell you people. I'm dry as a damned bone today. Nothing even remotely funny to say. Seriously, even if I go over today's news, nothing piques my once-scintillating wit. For now, I can only suggest what funny jokes might sound like, a la:

Uday and Qusay Hussein are dead? Insert funny "Uday will be trimming his George Michael beard in Hell" joke.

Knicks trade Latrell Spreewell? Insert funny "crippling blow to NYC area cornrow industry" joke.

White House official apologizes for African uranium flap? Insert funny "Bush probably can't locate Africans in Africa, much less uranium" joke.

Army Pfc. Jessica Lynch finally returns home? Insert funny "local men will now consider making drunken passes at her at the local TGI Fridays an act of patriotism" joke.

Mortars shatter Liberian ceasefire? Insert funny "Um....well...there's really absolutely nothing funny about the situation in Liberia" joke.

The J. Lo & Ben Affleck interview helps NBC's "Dateline" win weekly ratings battle? Insert funny "networks now scrambling to cater to lucrative big-ass/mouthbreather demographic" joke.

Bad Boys II topping the box office? Insert funny "America is a disgusting cesspool of vigorous mediocrity and should sink to the bottom of the sea" joke.

See? I got nothing.

posted by Finny Link

Monday, July 21, 2003

 

MARGINALIA

Christ, I am very glad to be home. Last night, I went to bed before midnight for the first time in perhaps five years. After a solid nine hours of sleep, I went out to audition for a Budweiser commercial. As is often the case, they were looking for a "Jack Black type". The commericals I get called in for tend to break down into two categories: "Jack Black type" and "Drew Carey type". The Jack Black auditions usually call for someone pudgy and off-the-wall, while the Drew Carey spots call for someone pudgy and awkward. I've never booked either kind.

Speaking of Drew Carey, he was up in Montreal and factored into one of the more surreal moments of the entire festival. I was eating dinner at Moishe's Steakhouse (filet mignon, mofos!) with a bunch of people I barely knew, when Mr. Carey walked in with the most ridiculous looking "porn babe" you've ever seen--she made Pamela Anderson look earthy and understated. Anyway, the two of them walked into the middle of the dining room, and Drew scanned the room to see who was on hand--this particular steakhouse is something of a festival hangout, you see. Once he was confident everyone had noticed his arrival, he began vigorously making out with (and basically dry humping) his surgically enhanced girlfriend. A couple of the people at my table rolled their eyes and told me he "always does that". Very bizarre.

I guess it makes sense, though. By and large, stand up comics are not the sexiest crew. I imagine Drew Carey probably didn't spend his teenage years knee deep in poontang. So now that he's famous, I guess he's determined to make up for lost time--and perhaps more importanly, to let the world know he's making up for it. God's speed, Drew.

P.S. Thanks to "H" for not posting anything evil on my site yesterday. I will never again forget to sign out of Blogger whilst using a hotel computer. Gracias.

posted by Finny Link

Sunday, July 20, 2003

 

word of advice from one blogger to another remember to log off when you use the hotel computer. hehe

posted by Finny Link

Saturday, July 19, 2003

 

FEELING FESTIVE

So Montreal has been tres, tres bien (see what I just did there with that "tres bien" thing? You know, because they speak French here? I am a genius.). I had my first "New Faces" show on Thursday evening and it went rather well, if I do say so myself. Not the set of my life by any means, and no one's lining up to pay me millions of dollars to develop a new sitcom called "Life With Finnegan", but it certainly didn't go poorly. Tonight, I have my final show and I'm pretty jazzed for it. Afterwards, I will drink a great deal and make semi-awkward chitchat until 4:30am, at which point I will head to the airport for my 6:45am flight home. Let`s hope the person sitting next to me doesn't have too delicate a sense of smell.

Everyone here keeps kvetching about the festival--how it`s gone downhill in the past few years, how it's not as cool as it used to be, etc. That is so very typical of my life. I always seem to get involved with things at the precise moment when people begin trying to throw dirt on them. It makes me feel as if I'm eternally locked into the first post-Belushi cast of SNL. Just call me Denny Dillon. On the other hand, though, I'm reasonably confident that those glory days everyone here seems to be waxing nostalgiac over never truly existed. It just seemed great at the time, because it was all so new to them. For instance, I'm having a fantastic time here at the festival--there's certainly a lot of awkward down time and cringe-inducing schmoozing going on, but all in all it's a great deal of fun. But if I were to start making the trek up here every year, I'm sure the novelty of the situation would wear off rather quickly and I'd start telling anyone who'd listen how much better the scene was sooooo much cooler back in 2003. That's what I'm telling myself at least.

Anyway, I guess that's all I have to say for the time being. The best line I heard last night was probably delivered by Otis Lee Crenshaw (aka Rich Hall), who said:

"There's only one surefire way to figure out who's rich and who's poor: If your name is on the front of the building where you work, you're rich. If you're name is on your desk, you're middle class. If your name is on your shirt, you're fucking poor."

Be back in NYC tomorrow, winners.

posted by Finny Link

Thursday, July 17, 2003

 

L'UPDATE

So far, Montreal rules. I've got one show under my belt so far and it went swimmingly. The truly important ones, however, are tonight and Saturday. I am reasonably confident about how things are going to go--at least, I'm as confident as my internal "dude, you're fucked" voice will allow me to be. It's been fun hobknobbing with the heavy hitters. I keep expecting someone to stand up in the middle of brunch (yes, I "brunched" this morning) and call me out for the fraud I am. J'ACCUSE!!!

I've seen a lot of stand up already and I'll probably see hours more by the time the weekend is over. But the joke that made me laugh the hardest so far is one this guy told me at a bar last night. I now pass it on to you:

A pirate walks into a bar. He has a steering weel attached to his crotch. The bartender asks "Why do you have a steering wheel attached to your crotch?" And the pirate says, "Aaarrrggh! It's drivin' me nuts!"

I laughed at that for an uncomfortably long time. I am a buffoon.

posted by Finny Link

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

 

NON, JE NE REGRETTE RIEN


Alright peoples, here's the skinny: In about five hours, I'll be heading off to beautiful Montreal, where I'll be performing in the genuinely prestigious "Just For Laughs" comedy festival.

I'm really, really excited. Not just for the festival, mind you--I'm excited by the possibility of getting stopped by Customs. You see, I plan on packing my suitcase with a bunch of random weird shit. That way, when the Customs Officer unpacks my bag, wackiness (and possible detainment) will ensue. Items I plan on packing:

Chinese finger cuffs
Entire Rick Astley CD catalogue
12 bottles of Flinestones vitamins
Ant Farm
Afro wig
Children's xylophone
Glossy photo of Ed Asner
Atari 2600
Peach cobbler wrapped in foil
Dead bird wrapped in foil
Mascara
Pierre Trudeau bobblehead doll
"According to Jim" Underoos
Cucumber, baby oil

This is going to be the best trip ever!

I'm not 100% sure what my online capabilities will be up in the Great White North, but I will do my best to check in. Toodles!

posted by Finny Link

Monday, July 14, 2003

 

AN EPIC RELEASE, INDEED...

Ladies, I don't want to hear you complaining that there are no eligible men left in the world.

I'm thinking he's probably really into cuddling.

posted by Finny Link

Sunday, July 13, 2003

 

SUMMERTIME ROLLS

Warning: Unfunny, music-related rambling to follow


There are probably lots of bands I listen to more often, but there's no band closer to my heart than Jane's Addiction. I've argued in many a drunken music-related debate that the so-called "alternative music" explosion of the 1990's began not with Nirvana's Nevermind, as is the conventional wisdom, but with Jane's Addiction's Nothing's Shocking in 1988. It may not have sold millions of albums, but I really do think you can point to that album as the birth of non-macho (or anti-macho, even) hard rock. It didn't fit neatly into any one genre--the guitars were way too aggressive to be considered "college rock" (a la R.E.M.), and the lyrics were way too creepy (read: bisexual) for most metalheads. And yet, the album secured beachheads on each front--"Mountain Song" was probably the first video MTV ever put into rotation on both "120 Minutes" and "Headbanger's Ball".

From there, bands like Soundgarden and Alice in Chains started to sell a few records and get a little mainstream attention. I remember that "Headbanger's Ball" began airing something called the "Frenetic Fringe", where they'd air 15 minutes of videos deemed too challenging for the average Winger and/or Bullet Boys fan. As a result, major labels began signing bands they wouldn't have looked twice at four years earlier, which brings us to Nirvana, Pearl Jam, etcetera and so forth. Indie purists don't like to admit it, but it's quite likely that the alternative rock explosion would never have occurred if Nevermind, like Nothing's Shocking, wasn't released (and pushed) by a major label. Anyway, I've never felt like Jane's Addiction has received its due--most rock fans remember them solely for "Been Caught Stealing", which is kind of sad. But make no mistake: Nothing's Shocking is absolutely one of the five most important albums of the last 20 years and should be owned by anyone who considers him/herself a fan of rock music. Strident enough for you?

On a personal level, I consider "Nothing's Shocking" to be the album that ushered me into maturity, in terms of my listening habits. For most of my early teenage years, I was into some really embarassing metal shit (yes, I owned not one, but two Dokken albums). I mean, I watched MTV and listened to the radio constantly, so I was abreast of pretty much everything that was popular at the time, but cheese metal was definitely what I actually went out and spent my money on. The thing was, heavy metal was never a comfortable fit for me, philosophically. All of the songs were about getting into fights (I tended to bawl uncontrollably when faced with the prospect of physical violence), getting wasted (I didn't drink until I was just shy of my 21st birthday) and getting laid (Um, you get the idea). Plus, I passionately hated all the people around me--and while disdain for parents, teachers, and unfaithful girlfriends factors heavily in hard rock lyrics, genuine misanthropy isn't really in lockstep with the glam metal ethos.

Now, I'm not saying the hippy/serial-killer/junkie/homo lifestyle seemingly espoused on Nothing's Shocking felt any more like the "real" me, but at the very least, it was undeniably different. There was just something beautifully unsettling about the way it made me feel about myself and the people around me--I felt like I was "in" on some sort of subcultural uprising. From that jumping off point, I started to get into stuff like The Smiths and The Cure, bands I'd always rejected due primarily to the fact that none of their very cute female fans would ever talk to me in high school. From there, I got really into David Bowie, Elvis Costello, The Beatles and pretty much everything else I love in this world. So I thank christ for Jane's Addiction--otherwise, I might still have Poison's "Open Up and Say...Ahhh! in heavy rotation.

Jane's Addiction was also the first non-arena rock show I ever attended, and I still consider it one of the greatest nights of my life. Previous to that, I'd go to places like the Worcester Centrum and the Providence Civic Center to see all my favorite bands: Whitesnake (yep), Def Leppard (twice!), and David Lee Roth (I stand by this one to this day). When Jane's Addiction came to town in the Spring of 1990, a few months before Ritual de lo Habitual was released, they were boycotting the city of Boston due to it's typically puritanical requirement that all music venues have seats. Therefore, they were playing in an empty hockey rink in the middle of the suburbs, which seemed indescribably cool to me. I was in my very first "mosh pit" that night, and even typing those words fills me with a strange mix of embarrassment, pride, bitterness and nostalgia. I know it seems odd now, when you see footage of jocks beating the shit out of eachother at a Linkin Park concert, but there was a time when moshing (or "slamdancing", or whatever dated terminology you want to use) felt fresh and spontaneous and, in a weird way, beautiful. I'd never in my life felt so in love with a band, or with the people around me--we were all part of something, motherfucker! Afterwards, walking toward the exit with my friend, I felt as happy as I ever have in my life. It was at this moment that I bumped into a girl who at one had lived down the street from me. She called over to me, "Hey Christian, I didn't know you were a Jane's Addict!"

Yes. She said "Jane's Addict". In one short sentence, she pretty much ruined the entire experience for me. These people were no longer my comrades in a crusade against musical and cultural hegemony--they were a group of pathetic, trendhopping "Jane's Addicts". It took me a long time to get over that one.

So why all this talk of Jane's Addiction, you ask? Well, the band is releasing it's first album of new material (I don't count that Kettle Whistle bullshit) a week from Tuesday, and I'm terribly frightened it's going to suck. Please don't let it suck. Pretty please? Anything any of you could to to ensure this album not sucking would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your help on this.

posted by Finny Link

Friday, July 11, 2003

 

SO ADDICTIVE

Ladies and gents, your wait is over.

After taking last week off for Independence Day, Portable Comedy is back tonight with yet another smattering NYC's best comedians.

So what makes this week's show different? For tonight and tonight only, each comic will be performing under the influence of hardcore narcotics. That's right folks--real comedians, real drug problems.

Here's the lineup, thrillseekers:

Special Guest Host: LIAM McENEANEY (Liam has appeared on Comedy Central
s "Premium Blend" and is combating a seven year smack habit.)

BOB POWERS (This creator of the web sensation "www.girlsarepretty.com" once snorted lines of cocaine off of James Caan's buttocks)

JESSE JOYCE (This nationally recognized touring comic just recently returned from a sold-out door of the Thailand's opium dens)

SUSAN PREKEL (Next week, she heads off to the prestigious "Just For Laughs" festival in Montreal. Assuming, of course, she awakens from her Crank-induced coma.)

MOODY McCARTHY (He appeared on "Star Search" this past Spring, and a few short months later, he appeared in front of a judge after being busted with 2 grams of "China Blue" up his keister.)

RACHEL FEINSTEIN (She's great with characters and voices--too bad none of those voices seem to be able to convince her to kick Crystal Meth.)

NOAM and MARY (They're the first husband & wife team in the history of Portable Comedy. Come out and help them celebrate their fourth full week on Methadone!)

And me, CHRISTIAN FINNEGAN (I'll just be doing a regular ol' spot tonight. And, um...I do lots of drugs, or something.)

And the details, you ask?

PORTABLE COMEDY
FRIDAY, JULY 11th
The Gershwin Hotel
7 East 27th Street
(b. 5th and Madison)
10:00pm
$7.00

Come on out and revel in our drug-addled hilarity!


Christian Finnegan,
your friend on the inside

posted by Finny Link

Thursday, July 10, 2003

 

HOLY LACKLUSTER SELF-PROMOTION!

At long last, I've finally updated my calendar. Check it out, if you're feeling so inclined.

posted by Finny Link

 

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, THE CLASSIEST TOWER OF HUBRIS ENTRY OF ALL TIME

New Slang Terms for Testicles:


Party Favors

Superfriends

The Ol' Harrison Fords

Los Danglitos

Sperm Caddies

KC and Jojo

The Starter Kit

Fantabulous Mr. Magic and his Wondertastic Life Partner, Jeff

The Baldwin Brothers

Les Nuttes

posted by Finny Link

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

 

PURE SHITE!


We're in Boston now. Whilst riding the mass transit system (the "T", as they call it here), a wierd middle eastern dude with scabs all over his arms started ogling my girlfriend. It felt just like we were back in NYC. Wonderful.

That's all I have to say for now. How pathetic is that? We're actually at my uncle's house and we have a full day ahead of us, culminating in my gig at the Charles Hotel in Cambridge (that's a very swanky place, for all you philistines out there). But I did want to take a brief moment out of my day to say hello to you, the TOH viewing public. I thank you for your unwavering readership...well, maybe slightly wavering.

Okay, I'll admit it--I have absolutely nothing of value to say this afternoon. So sue me. As penance, I will now list a few of the various nicknames I have been given over the years:

Christian Fuckegan
Christian Faggegan
Finnefuck
Finnedude
Finnedouche
Finnebago
Christian Flamergan
The Finn
Finnthrax
Asshole

See you tomorrow, winners!

posted by Finny Link

Sunday, July 06, 2003

 

QUOTH MORRISSEY, "HAS THE WORLD CHANGED, OR HAVE I CHANGED?"

So, the Chinatown bus thing went off relatively without a hitch and I am now nestled in the suburban (or should I say sub-suburban) splendor of Acton, MA, where I spent the majority of my childhood. So far we (I have the lovely Ms. Kambri in tow) have done little more than eat, drink, and stare deep into the void of our own existential insignificance--Acton is good for that sort of thing. A while ago we took my dad's car out and we did a cheesy little "this is your life" mini-tour. We passed by my childhood home, my former Junior High school, the local hotspot known as the Acton Bowladrome, and the very stretch of pavement where my childhood friend Xavier Farragut once took a crap in the middle of the street.

I've made hating my hometown into something of a hobby over the years. Driving around, I wanted Kambri to see for herself that I was raised in the absolute cultural armpit of society. But much to my complete horror, I now have to admit that it's kind of a cute place--nice houses, well-manicured lawns, relatively friendly folk. In short, it's the perfect place to raise a family, if that kind of thing is your bag. So does this mean that the town has undergone some sort of massive transformation? Or have I suddenly become...old? Am I becoming the kind of horrid mediocrity-loving fuckwad who would find a cultural diaper pail like Acton, Massachusetts "quaint"? Sweet Jesus, don't let it be true! I will not go quietly into that fannypack-clad night!!

Wait a second, here--this is crazy talk. Of course this town sucks! It's all a ruse, man! Yeah! How dare Acton, Massachusetts disguise its truly vile nature with a upper middle class veneer of happiness and bonhomie! This place is a miserable hellhole and I'm going to prove it by spending the next three hours sipping a glass of iced tea by the pool!

That'll show 'em.

posted by Finny Link

Saturday, July 05, 2003

 

FANTASTIC VOYAGE

I'm about to get on a bus that goes from New York's Chinatown to Boston's Chinatown for a measely $10. This may be the biggest mistake I've ever made in my life. I will file my report this evening.

posted by Finny Link

Friday, July 04, 2003

 

FIREWORKS REDUX

Today is the 4th of July. No seriously, don't check you calendar--it's true! So I spent a few minutes earlier today writing about my utter disinterest in firework displays, but then I thought to myself "Wait, haven't I written about this before?" I checked my archives and, lo and behold, there it was. This is actually the 4th or 5th time I've thought "Have I written this before?", but this is the first time my suspicions were confirmed. When you do this blog thing (nearly) every day, you lose track of all the nonsense you're casting into the void.

So now, a dilemma: do I just trash what I was working on and write something else? Well, no. It's already nearly 7pm, and I'd like to post something--I've been taking far too many days off lately and I need to cut that shit out if I want to hold on to my precious 179 hits a day (jealous much?). I could just post what I've been writing, but it's pretty much exactly what i wrote last year, with a few typos and tense changes thrown in--I've been drinking Maker's Mark and Mountain Dew all afternoon, you see. So, after a bit of internal debate, I've decided to simply re-post the same anti-fireworks rant I posted last year. Hell, I'm thinking 95% os you never read it the first time around, and the other 5% didn't exactly commit it to memory. I know it's kind of lame, and I apologize--just think of this as a TOH "clip show", like they used to do on "Happy Days", "Facts of Life", etc.

Anyway, enjoy:
____________________

Can we all just admit that fireworks suck? Every 4th of July, it amazes me how many of my cynical (read: sensible) friends pretend to be impressed by some cheesedick fireworks display. Honestly, when's the last time you found yourself saying "I've never seen that before"? Let's see: there are the ones that explode into a circle, the ones that that look like a pin cushion, and the ones that cascade down like a spider plant. In the words of former New Jersey Net Derrick Coleman, whoop de damn do. Still, everyone stands around with their necks craned skyward, occasionally ooooooo-ing like halfwits. Eventually, the reverent moaning dies out (save a moron or two) and the bitter smell of disappointment begins to waft through the crowd--people start looking at their watches and trying to remember where they parked. Then comes the most annoying part, the four minute period where everyone debates as to whether the show is or isn't over. "Is that the end? Yeah, I think that big one was the last--no, wait. Ok, now it's over...I think...coming up...this looks like it. No. Wait. Was that it? I think that's...nope, still going." Afterwards, everyone claims to have been awed by the fireworks, but that last year's were a little better.

Here's the ugly truth, people: last year's fireworks sucked. And next year's? Totally going to suck.

Please, don't be upset--you'll thank me later.

posted by Finny Link

Thursday, July 03, 2003

 

I HOLD THIS TRUTH TO BE SELF-EVIDENT

Tomorrow is July 4th, and it's got me wondering: did the signers of the Declaration of Independence think John Hancock was a dick? Because I know if I was asked to sign some incredibly important historical document and some jackass decided to take up half the page with a humongous hey-check-me-out signature, I'd be pretty peeved.

And as is so often the case, Hancock has been rewarded for his doucheplay. After all, we've heard of him, have we not? Hell, the 2nd tallest building in the city of Boston is named after the guy. And can you honestly name any other thing he accomplished other than taking up precious DOI square inch-age? What about the other signers? Where's Francis Hopkinson's name recognition? When are they going to break ground on Carter Braxton's skyscraper? And for the love of god, what about Elbridge Freakin' Berry?!!!

(Yes, I did have to do a Google search for those names. But that just proves my point, motherfuckers!)

Anyway, the facts are in and I'm rendering my verdict: John Hancock? Huuuuuuge dick.

posted by Finny Link

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

 

MOVE IT ON OVER


A former co-worker of mine asked me to help him move this weekend. That, in itself, was not such an annoying request. It was the Tom Sawyer-ly way in which he phrased it:

HIM: Yeah, man. You should swing by on Saturday. I'm having this barbecue-slash-moving-party thing. It's gonna be sweet. Good food, crack open some beers, throw some boxes in a van--you should totally come.

ME: Um...who's going to be there?

HIM: So far, just me, you and probably Darren. But I have calls out to some other people.


And then, a bit later in the conversation...

ME: Where are you moving?

HIM: I'm moving in with Darren.

ME: Um, doesn't Darren live in a fifth floor walk-up?

HIM: Well...yeah. ....but the flights are really small!


It was at this point that I had to break the news to my friend that he and I don't have a "Five Floor Friendship". I mean, five floors implies a certain degree of closeness, does it not? I explained to him that he should think of me as more of a "Stand With the Van" kind of friend. After all, there are only a few times in my life that I've agreed to help haul someone's shit up more than two floors, and in each circumstance, the person being assisted had breasts and a vagina.

A woman can always get a couple of guy friends to help her move--the draftees usually consist of a lingering ex-boyfriend and some hopelessly lovestruck "platonic" friend from her poetry class, both of whom think that they're going to worm their way into the girl's heart (and pants) by lugging 46 boxes of Gabriel Garcia Marquez books and Ani DiFranco CDs up seven flights of stairs. They are misguided.

Guys, on the other hand, are up shit's creek when it comes to getting their shitty furniture from one apartment to another--unless, of course, they can bribe their friends with obscene amounts of pizza, beer and/or weed. Usually, though, it's just a guy sitting the front seat of a van, awkwardly squeezed in between two overweight Ukrainian dudes.

Or is that just me?

Another reason it sucks to help people move is that they're never fucking done packing when you get there--they always end up just throwing all their shit into milk crates and garbage bags while you get stuck trying to get the goddamn armoir through the front door.

I think the reason it takes people so long to pack is that they never factor in for "nostalgia time". Because when you're packing stuff into boxes, you end up going through everything single thing you own--every letter, every yearbook, every blurry snapshot of your bitchin' trip to Mardi Gras. So you're trying to get work done, but you find yourself saying things like "Oh, I'm gonna pack those books...just as soon as I read my 3rd grade book report on Superfudge." Or, "I'll get to disconnecting the stereo...right after I listen to my junior high chorus singing 'Careless Whisper' one more time."

Hey, now that I think about it, where the hell is that cassette...

posted by Finny Link