Friday, September 29, 2006

Cut The Thread, Already

There’s not many sights that will make the average New Yorker recoil on the sidewalk. Window displays featuring headless mannequins in mesh jock straps waving the American flag? Of course. Giant inflatable rat poised to attack a callous Duane Reade? A no-brainer. Homeless man relieving himself on the side of Starbucks? When you gotta go, you gotta go. A woman getting her face sewn up on 24 hour telecast?

Fuck no.

Oh, but yes. There she is. All day, all night on the corner of Eighth and 23rd. She’s rocking the needle when I walk to work in the morning and feeling the darn when I stumble home drunk at 3 in the morning. Now, I don’t know what eyebrow threading is. I do know, however, that the procedure looks like something out of Abu Grhaib. And whatever this procedure is supposed to do for someone, (more eyebrows? less eyebrows? macramé eyebrows?) I don’t really care. But for some reason, the sick bastards who run the Unique Threading Salon have decided that their services require a permanent visual cue describing what one can look forward to inside. And it’s absolutely nauseating.

Now, clearly people want to be threaded. The place does sufficient business that they can pay some vagrants to slap on some sandwich board and throw leaflets at those passing by. But turn off the damn TV! I mean, other businesses don’t do this. Gynecologists don’t broadcast their trade on the sidewalk. If you need the service, you just know.

It’s time to fade to black, Unique Threading Salon. Pull the plug. Torture in private. That’s the American way, after all.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The Father of Anna Nicole Smith's Newborn Speaks

Hello, and thanks for coming out today to the "This is not just a cheap attempt to exploit the tragic death of Anna's beloved son" press conference. I know many of you paid a great deal of money to be here, but if you look under your seats, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised to find a goodie bag, which includes special Halloween Peeps and last month's issue of Vanity Fair, because we wanted to make this a classy affair.

I'm Howard K. Stern, aka, "Howard, the Jewish lawyer" from the Anna Nicole Show on E! and Anna has authorized me to speak on her behalf today because contractually she's only allowed to utter the phrase "TrimSpa, baby!"

But as the flurry of interest surrounding Daniel's tragic overdose slows, Anna and I both thought it was important to let her adoring fans know that she won't soon forget her boy, regardless of how much medication she's taking. In fact, Anna's again opted to act with dignity and has decided to name her daughter after Daniel. Her birth certificate officially reads, "Dannie Lynn Hope." But to us, she'll always be known as "Replacement."

There's also been a bit of controversy surrounding the issue of Replacement's paternity. Yes, I know you're all a lot less interested to learn that I am, in fact, the father than the fact of how I managed to impregnate the drug addled Anna. You're saying, "but she's been in a medically induced coma for the past two years," and I'm saying, "you're not wrong." But, where there's a will, there's a way. And since the will of J. Howard Marshall, Anna's dead billionaire husband, was just validated, let's just say, I found a way!

I'll now entertain your questions... at $100 a pop.

Monday, September 25, 2006

How To Be Less of an Asshole: Rosh Hashanah Edition

The Jewish New Year started this weekend, which means for the week to come, Jews across the globe will be doing their damndest to get inscribed in G-d's big book of "Who Lives and Who Dies 2006-2007." Next Monday, on Yom Kippur, that book will close, so on that day we'll fast and give the whole sin-purge thing one last push. See, the thing is, if your name ain't inside that book at the closing bell, well, it was nice knowing ya...

Not wanting to take any chances myself, I got me some religion this weekend and attended services led by Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum of CBST, aka, Congregation I Love My Son's Boyfriend. CBST is the oldest gay synagogue in New York, but it welcomes all cheapskates who won't pay for services elsewhere. I've attended services here for years, not only because I'm allergic to paying retail for religion, but also because Rabbi Kleinbaum gives good sermon. Say what you will about your religious leader, but mine found a way to unite the Christians, Muslims and Jews in Israel when she tried to organize a World Pride Day march! (Okay, so they actually united against her in anti-gay vitriol. Potato, potahtoe.)

Last year, I wrote about her sermon here, and this year the Rabbi came through again. Sure, the general theme was the same, ie, how can I be less of an asshole in the year to come? But this year the Rabbi encouraged us to think about the portion of the bible we were reading that day. Essentially the story is about an incredibly dysfunctional family, Abraham and Sarah, and Abraham's concubine, Hagar. It seems that Sarah got really jealous of Hagar and the son she bore for Abraham, and in a huge hissy-fit, banished Hagar and Ishmael from her house. Abraham, not wanting to fight his legal wife on the status of his lover, agreed and tossed his baby mama into the desert.

The Rabbi's take on all this was pretty interesting. What she said was that the bible doesn't give us stories about perfect people, it shows us folks who are as flawed as you, me and Angelina Jolie. And that even our forbearers acted out of spite and jealousy (much like Jennifer Anniston when she spoke out and posed butt-up for Vanity Fair). So what we need to take from this is that people have always and will always act without the best of intentions: motivations are rarely good-n-pure. But what we need to strive for in the next year is to inflict less pain on the people in our lives. We need to terrorize them less. Essentially we need to be less bitchy.

It won't be easy, but I am going to give it a shot. And for all of you who just made a snarky comment under your breath about my intentions... well, it was nice knowing ya!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Comments and Reactions From Attendees of Virginia Senator George Allen’s “Ethnic Day” Campaign Rally.

Facing what polls suggest is now a highly competitive Senate race, Allen pledged his commitment to working for people of all racial backgrounds as he addressed the Fairfax County Republican Committee's third annual Ethnic Community Campaign Kick-Off Rally. "It is invigorating to be with everyone here of all sorts of diverse backgrounds," Allen told more than 500 GOP voters of Filipino, Indian, Iranian, Taiwanese and Vietnamese descent, among others.
-Daily Press, September 10, 2006

Sinjar Singh: Well, he did seem a little uncomfortable. I began to discuss my views about small business tax breaks as a means to stimulate economic growth but I’m not sure he was listening. He kept asking me about my “funny wrap hat.” And when I went to shake his hand, he began looking at the ground while mumbling something about losing a contact lens.

Raymond Wong: I was curious to see how the Senator would respond to the allegations that he has ties to extremist right-wing groups. But before I could raise the question, he cut me off and eagerly asked which Bruce Lee movie was my favorite. Before I could even say anything he launched into a protracted explanation as to why “Enter the Dragon” was better than “Game of Death,” notwithstanding Kareem Abdul Jabbar’s cameo appearance in the latter. His aides ended the conversation shortly thereafter.

Sharonda Brown: A Dixie band? At the Ethnic Day Rally? Is he serious?

Lupita Sanchez: Um, I suppose it was a nice effort. But, I was a little put off by the by the campaign novelty maracas. I think they were supposed to be some sort of attempt to lighten the mood about that “Macaca” incident. I had to tell him about seven times that, no, I don’t play the maracas. And then he said something about Shakira.

Rasheesh Gupta: I thought we could talk about the Iraq war but the Senator appeared to have other topics he wanted to discuss. It was difficult at first to understand what he was getting at, but I believe he was attempting to make the point that Gandhi would have reconsidered his philosophy of nonviolence had he attended last spring’s NRA convention. At his aide’s prompting, the Senator quickly changed the conversation but, as I tried to explain several times, I haven’t seen “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” and thus didn’t have a favorite scene. The Senator did seem quite disappointed, though, when I explained that I had never actually seen someone extract a still-beating human heart from a person using only his bare hands and that I seriously doubted that it was even possible.

Gladys Feingold: At one point he started to make a joke. A priest, a rabbi and a minister go into a bar and then something, something. I sort of walked away before it ended.

Darnell Washington: Look, I’m used to the whole some-of-my-best-friend’s-are-minorities line. Standard operating procedure in these situations. But, sorry, I just don’t buy that he hangs with Kanye West. And he probably shouldn’t have rapped a few lines from “Gold Digger.” That was just wrong.

Albert Kuo: I was actually just out for a jog when these two guys in suits sort of forcibly guided me into here. Before I could say anything I’m taking photos with the white guy in the suit over there. I’m not that into politics so I’m not sure who he is. And I wasn’t sure who he was talking to but he kept loudly asking “speak English?”

Shiv Kapur: It was toward the end of the day when I got the opportunity to have my picture taken with the Senator. And maybe he was just tired. But as I approached, he raised his arms impatiently toward his aide and appeared to mouth the words “Jesus, how many more?” His aide claims he actually said “Jesus, how many more amazingly diverse Virginians could I be so lucky to meet today,” but I still have my doubts.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

An Executive Producer's Notes to Rosie O'Donnell Regarding Her First Week on The View

To: Rosie O'Donnell
From : Bill Geddie, Executive Producer
Date: Tuesday, September 5, 2006
Re: Your First Show!!

Rosie's back!!

Let me just begin by saying, once again, how excited we all are to have you on The View. Now, we all think today's show went pretty well, but there's always room for improvement. So, please consider these notes as merely helpful suggestions designed to make your transition here as smooth as possible.

First, that whole Koosh Ball thing kind of died with your old show. Now, we appreciate the effort to reconnect with your fans, but it seems a bit out of place here. Plus, one almost hit Barbara in the head. We can't stress enough how bad that would have been. In fact, just a general FYI for all future shows: Nothing should EVER come near Barbara's head.

Also, it was difficult to tell, but were you napping during the "Hot Topics" segment? If uninterested in a particular topic, please just smile and head nod. And feet off the coffee table. At all times.

Wardrobe, Hair and Makeup. I know we agreed you could use your own people. And we certainly encourage all the hosts to cultivate their own personal style. But, as noted before, we are trying to achieve a certain aesthetic cohesion among the hosts. That said, I'll simply end with a question: How do you think a mullet fits in with the others?

To: Rosie
From : Bill
Date: Wednesday, September 6, 2006
Re: Wednesday's Show

Hmm. Well, let's start with a positive. No Koosh Balls!

Moving along. We welcome spirited debate among the hosts. It has always been a hallmark of the show. And, of course, disagreements will flare up from time to time. But when you disagree with Elisabeth, it's better to express that verbally. A caveat: "Suck it, blondie," while a verbal response, is also not appropriate.

And definitely no more "two-for-flinching" punches. As you can see, Elizabeth bruises easily.

Finally, referring to Mrs. Star Jones Reynolds as that "psycho bridezilla" was kind of a backstage joke. Not for on-air. I'm pretty sure we had gone over that in pre-production.

To: Rosie O' Donnell
From : Bill Geddie
Date: Thursday, September 7, 2006
Re: Are You Reading These?

LESS ANGER. Would it help to have that on a permanent cue card?

Look, we get that "The Queen of Nice" moniker is officially retired. But how about "The Queen of Commonly Agreed Upon Standards of Decent Social Behavior?" That has a nice ring to it too.

And jeans? Again?

To: Ms. O' Donnell
From : Mr. Bill Geddie, Executive Producer
Date: Friday, September 8, 2006
Re: You Are Contractually Obligated To Read This

No one authorized costume Fridays. (That was a costume, correct?)

Please stop asking guests to arm wrestle.

The set design may not be altered. Where did that Barcalounger come from?

And Elisabeth didn't show up for work today and no one's heard from her. Thoughts?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

My Bad!

Dear Investors,

As CEO of Amaranth Advisers, it falls to me to pass along some news. Happily, my youngest, Trip, began his Senior year at Choate without incident -- fingers crossed he'll be Harvard's problem next year! Judy and I celebrated our second anniversary in Mustique, and since she's 21 now, we were even allowed to celebrate with some champagne! And our hedge fund lost $3 billion.

This might be a bit of a shock to those of you who attended last week's investors meeting at the Four Seasons with COO, Charles Winkler, where he assured you that the fund was actually up 25% for the year. But, in fairness to Charlie, that was before a few nervous nellies started dumping large stakes in convertible bonds (whereas those fellas usually just dump large steaks in convertible blondes -- Hi-yo!)

Over the past few years there have been rumblings that hedge funds like ours, you know, the secret, unregulated kind, could create "widespread financial disruptions," but our philosophy has always been "we're too rich to care what peasants think." And some may say that in 2004, when we protested an SEC ruling to register with federal regulators, saying, "Amaranth does not 'operate in the shadows' outside regulatory scrutiny," we were lying in a BIG, big way, that we're now being hoisted by our own petard, that this is karmic payback for standing on the shoulders of working Americans (in our golf spikes) and laughing as we danced a jig.

Well, all I have to say is fret not! Remember the consequences for those involved with Long Term Capital a few years ago? I know, me neither! Talk about Short Term Memory. I mean, yes, right now you're thinking, "I'm out $3 billion." And all I can say to that is "oopsie." But don't you worry, we'll find someone to blame for this... and just a guess, he'll be a registered Democrat! Those people are always trying to take the money out of our fur-lined pockets, aren't they?

Feel better? I'm glad. Anyway, we'll catch up at the club at some point soon, I'm sure. If you need to reach me in the next few weeks, I'll be between banks in the Caymans, Switzerland and Dubai.

Thurston McEatthepoor III

Friday, September 15, 2006

Race War, Anyone?

Yes, it was a shameless ploy to boost ratings, but it worked. I watched Survivor: Race War last night just to see how TV's worst idea since The View would turn out. And, of course, it sucked. It is no different than all the previous seasons. People whine. Not much gets done. The hotties are quick to seek each other out. Blah, blah, blah.

But while the show isn't much fun, imagining the people watching it is. I mean, you just know that somewhere David Duke was tuned in and silently fist-pumping every time the White team did something remotely successful.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Attention All Segway Riders!

Here's the headline:

Segway Recalls Scooters for Injury Risk

The "risk," of course, is that you'll look like a douchebag.

And yes, in case you were wondering, that is our President falling off his scooter.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Three Fallen Women

Contrary to popular belief, that title does not refer to Renee, Jay and me, or what happened to us on our summer vacation. Rather, THREE FALLEN WOMEN is a new book recommended to us by our great friend and supporter in Chicago, Leah Jones, whose other friend, Amy Guth, has just published. Leah speaks very highly of Amy, and since Leah also speaks very highly of us (or so she says), we're inclined to take this recommendation and run with it.

We're also inclined to run with a rec. of a book we haven't actually read, because look at how cute Amy's author photo is! Oh, and she's also been published in The Believer, Monkeybicycle, Hungry, Chicago?, Four Magazine, The Complete Meal and PerformInk Magazine. And if that weren't enough, she writes "Eleuthromaniac," a monthly socio-feminist column for Outcry Magazine, and despite the fact that I know not what eleuthromaniacs nor socio-feminists are, both scare me in that "I'm scared but am still willing/excited to touch it" sort of way. (Don't pretend like you don't know what I'm talking about.)

There's a ton of information about Amy (with more pics!)and her book on her website, which makes a great deal of sense to us. So help a fallen woman out (and yes, now I'm referring to me), and hop on over to her site, buy her book and tell all your friends about it!

Monday, September 11, 2006

5 Years Later

Peace be with you today. Cause we're back tomorrow.

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