Sunday, February 18, 2001


There are folks who say cursing is stupid, the result of a lack of imagination, etc. This is only because they don’t know how to curse well.

But I do. A partial list follows as the original trash-talking file got trashed and I had to rewrite it:

Filthy list below jump:

Saturday, February 17, 2001

On Language

"There’s a fine line between clever and stupid.”

—This is Spinal Tap

Let’s talk about the naming of things.

Two examples of names for things which do a tightrope walk along the clever/stupid line.

The Band. The balls of it! A band names itself “the Band,” like they’re the only band in the whole fucking world. Not “a” band. “The” band. As if, whenever anybody asked “Where’s the band?” or said “I’m with the band” they were talking about them.

Clever ... or stupid?

Circus Circus

What a fucking stretch, eh?

I imagine a bunch of dim bulb cartoon mobsters around a conference table trying to come up with a name for their new casino.

BOSS: OK, boys, I got the theme. We’re gonna turn this whole place into a circus, see? You got your wholesome family entertainment for Mom and the kids, gambling, booze and whores for Dad. Something for everybody, know what I mean? Only problem is, I need a name...something classy. Something that says “this is a classy circus — you’re not gonna step in no elephant shit.”

MOBSTER #1: How about “the Classy Circus”...?

BOSS: No, they got one in New Jersey. Anyway, I want a name that says “circus.”

MOBSTER #2: Circus Circus?

BOSS: Nah. That ain’t classy enough. See, in Canada they got this fag circus where they put the name circus “Circus Sally Manella” or sumpin. It’s more classy when you put the names the other way around like that. (pause) Think about it...

MOBSTER #2: (starting to get it) So, instead of “Circus Circus”...

BOSS: Yeah...?

MOBSTER #2: We call it “Circus Circus”...!

BOSS: Yeah!

The MOBSTERS applaud.

BOSS: That’s what I call class!


* * *

And, speaking of gambling, noticed how the “Gambling Industry” has redefined itself as the “Gaming” Industry and redefined gambling as “wagering.”

Gambling makes me think of “Crime Story,” “Casino” and leatherskinned old ladies with big hats and tits down to their bellybuttons pumping styrofoam cups full of quarters into the slots. “Gaming” and “wagering” makes me think of a bunch of snuff-dipping 17th century fops putting wagers on the running of the hounds. “I say, a sporting wager, wot?” opposed to Joe Pesci getting buried alive.

Clever, clever, clever.

* * *

3 stupid language tricks:

* Speaking of fops, the reason we say “butterfly” instead of “flutterby” is: back in the 18th century, there was a fashion among said fops of saying words backwards (as in “bassackwards”) which is why we say “butterfly” (which makes no fucking sense) instead of “flutterby” (poetic and descriptive.) Goddamn fops.

* During the Elizabethan age, folks in London sounded more or less like the folks in Dublin do today. The “King’s English” arose because King George III — a Hapsburg monarch — i.e., a kraut — spke English with a thick German accent...and all the court hangers-on did their best to imitate hm because, by definition, the “King’s English” is, of course, good.

Goddamn fops ruin everything. Again.

* Factoid: Norman Mailer invented the word factoid to describe the spurious facts that everyone swallow whole-hog (We only use 10% of our brains!) — but dumbass newscasters started using it to mean “interesting nugget of trivia” and killed the poor man’s useful neologism while he yet lived. Goddamn newscasters. Almost as bad as those fops.

* * *
The phrase “Have your cake and eat it too” is stupid. Lotsa folks say it should be “Eat your cake and have it to” but that doesn’t sound right. How about “Eat your cake and keep it?” Everybody say “eat your cake and keep it” starting now. Because I say so.

It’s klever.


I hate commercials. OK, I love to hate commercials. I love to hate that commercial from LifeAlert where some old guy crumples in a flowerbed and presses his beeper.

MR. PERKINS: Help me...I’m having heart attack!

And LifeAlert responds instantly.

LIFEALERT GUY: Don't worry, Mr. Perkins! Help is on the way!

What I’d like to see...

MR. PERKINS: Help me...I’m having heart attack!

LIFEALERT GUY: What am I supposed to do about it?

MR. PERKINS: For God’s sake help me!

LIFEALERT GUY: I’m afraid you didn’t pay your bill, Mr. Perkins.

MR. PERKINS: Oh God....the pain!

LIFEALERT GUY: We sent you three notices. Three. Don’t you think that’s fair? We think it’s more than fair. But you ignored us, didn’t you?

MR. PERKINS: It”s like thousads of tiny dwarves with little knives inside my heart!

LIFEALERT GUY: Have a nice day, Mr. Perkins.

(Hangs up)

Cut to MR. PERKINS falling face down in the zinnias.

This is when they cut to the upbeat OLD LADY. She holds up a LifeAlert beeper.

OLD LADY: Life’s like my magic wand to summon the police, the fire department, or the paramedics.

You see the old lady in bed. There’s a silhouette of a BAD MAN outside her window, some guy in pullover cap, no doubt The Wrong Sort of Person.

OLD LADY: (on the phone to LifeAlert) There’s someone outside my window!

VOICE ON PHONE: Don’t worry, Mrs. Perkins. The police have been notified. Help is on the way.

And, the instant he says this, the guy in the window reacts. Does this “uh-oh” doubletake and runs away. Now, please explain to me what he’s reacting to. Is his hearing that good? Is he psychic? Carrying a little police radio?

The more obvious explanation is that he’s been hired by Lifealert to scare the shit out of old people — make ‘em feel like they’re getting their money’s worth.

LIFEALERT MANAGER TYPE: Yeah, show up outside her window. When she calls, I’ll page you. Then run.

GUY: Can I steal something?

LIFEALERT MANAGER: No. Just run. And don’t scare her too bad. If she fucking dies we can’t sell this shit...

Thursday, February 15, 2001

Idea for peace in the Middle East

Goddamnit, I don't care anymore. It's like the Hatfields and the McCoys with towels on their heads and/or beanies. Fuck it. I don't care who's right. it's boring. Not only that, consider the shitloads of money spent to keep the Jews and Palestinians from killing each other. What we need is a quick and dirty solution. I propose interval ownership.

Six months of the year, this prime piece of improbable real estate is "Palestine," the other six months it's "Israel." When it's your time out of the country, the UN puts you up in a four star hotel of your choice anywhere on the planet but the "Holy Land" with free room service, whores...or family entertainment in places like DisneyWorld and Universal Studios for the morally upright. And, speaking of "entertainment resort complexes," the "Holy Land" itself would be turned into a vast amusement park called, well, "Holy Land." During your six months, you'd work as an "entertainer" for tourists around the world -- lotsa bigheaded Jesuses walking on water, signing autographs, etc. (And, of course, the film industry would also provide employment via constant documentaries.) Jews could plant trees. Six months later, Palestinians could dig them up. The Jews could ask for mony to plant more trees.

I think it could work.

Wednesday, February 14, 2001

Jesus Christ: Action Figure

Why aren't there any cool religious action figures? Jesus, for example.

ANNOUNCER: He clears the temple with crushing whip-hand action!

KID: (holding HEROD action figure) Who do you think you are, Jesus?

JESUS: (the other kid doing a pompous JESUS voice) I have come to show you God. Behold...

The KID pushes a button in JESUS's back. JESUS kicks HEROD in the nuts.

JESUS: Now do you see God?