Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Strike out

If nothing else, the transit strike will let me someday scold my whippersnapper grandkids about how easy they have it. "When I was your age, I had to walk thirty blocks and five avenues in 20 degree weather just to get to my job."

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Welcoming words

Thanks to Google Analytics, I now know exactly how many people visit this site (a bandwidth-busting 77 visits in the last month) and, more interestingly, what search terms brought them here. Some relate to specific posts, yet you wonder why people are searching on "kelly ripa eggnog" in the first place. Or "pictures+buckets." And to the 4 people who came here looking for "hotstockings," I hope you found what you were looking for.

kelly ripa eggnog2
nobody listens to andrew + book 1
geico commercials caveman1
frog procter& gamble1
picture from geico caveman 1
nobody listens to us 1
cheapskate christmas1
now alums from the 80's with george michael + careless whispers 1
my chemical romance action figures price in us dollars1
nobody listens to andrew1
us weekly kelly ripa eggnog1
pharrell rolling stone interview1
this is not awesome geico1

Monday, November 21, 2005

More adventures in thrift

Expanding on Why pay more?:
  • Cheapskate Christmas: The day after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, is a mecca of crazy deals. Two years ago, I scored a $35 karaoke machine, $15 DVD player, and $5 Simpsons Season 1 DVD at Best Buy. Now many stores offer below-cost prices to tempt early holiday shoppers. tells where to go first.

  • Pitting one against the other: My credit card, for a $50 annual fee, gives flier miles for each dollar spent. Some competing cards are fee-less, so I called my card company up, said I was thinking of switching, and--hollaback--they refunded the annual fee and agreed to lower my interest rate. Even if you don't pay an annual fee, call and asking for a lower rate. I've read that you'll usually get some break.

  • Anatomy of a deal: Aquafresh Extreme Clean Toothpaste on sale for $2.00, down from $3.29. Sunday circular coupon: save $2.25 on two. And the store had a "try it free" rebate that refunds the original purchase price. Net: I made $1.54 off the transaction.
For those of you keeping score:
Andrew: 162
The System: 0

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Just like Us

Just in: Kelly Ripa "likes eggnog a lot!"

Also: Us Weekly makes my head ache in throbbing dumbness.


From Rolling Stone's interview with hip hop uber-producer/star Pharrell:
Whose record have you listened to the most this year?

"I like My Chemical Romance and Green Day, in terms of rock. I'm looking forward to the new Puddle of Mudd and the new Strokes albums. And people need to show more love to Ben Folds. Hell, yeah!"

Sunday, November 06, 2005

You could learn a lot from a lab

Annie the labrador

My illict connections to the publishing biz netted me an advance copy of Marley and Me: Life and Love with the World's Worst Dog, one man's memoir of life with a big ass labrador retriever. It's a heckuva book, crampacked with humor, sharp storytelling, and, in the end, a poignancy that'll shake you to your very core.

This intense resonance may correlate to the fact that I too once shared a home with a yellow lab named Annie. Behind that sweet All-American girl's name lay 75 lbs. of intensity that could knock an aunt to the ground with the mere ring of a doorbell. Who, when set free from the chains that bind her (namely, a fraying red leash), could outrun the NCAA athlete in the family. Whose appetite could be not sated by mere dog food, forcing her to snack on the TV remote control and our Brutus Beefcake action figure.

And yet the enthusiasm that awaited me every trip home, with a tail wagging hard enough to clear a coffee table and a tongue falling out of her mouth, always made her indiscretions seem trivial. You can't buy love like that, at least since Guiliani cleaned up Times Square, and you genuinely wanted to protect her during the thunderstorms that sent her under the coffee table cowering in irrational fear.

Would life be better if we were more like dogs? At the end of Marley and Me, the author reflects on lessons learned from his labrador:

Marley taught me about living each day with unbridled exuberance and joy, about seizing the moment and following your heart. He taught me to appreciate the simple things - a walk in the woods, a fresh snowfall, a nap in a shaft of winter sunlight. And as he grew old and achy, he taught me about optimism in the face of adversity.

Mostly, he taught me about friendship and selflessness and, above all else, unwavering loyalty.

Not such a bad dog after all.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Sweet music to my ears

A man + a plan = a PEZ mp3 player. Each one is built one-at-a-time by a one-man operation who got the legal OK from the PEZ Company. Holds about 120 songs, and you turn it on by flipping the head back.

The iPod Shuffle just got a whole lot lamer. It even comes preloaded with hipster indie music - why doesn't Apple do that?

Could this be the thing to revive my dormant and unwieldly PEZ collection? If it dispenses music as well as it dispenses candy, quite possibly.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Has a car alarm...

...ever actually prevented a theft? I wondered this at 4:14 AM
this morning when an alarm went off nearby and stayed on for
about 15 minutes.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Why pay more?

I am a man of many talents, yet the one that makes friends and foes boil over with envy are my mad couponing skillz. Example: I once paid $41 for $82 worth of groceries and shelled out a mere $4 for $18 worth of crap at CVS. How? Behold, some of my secrets:

Shop around: what your momma told you was right-on. The aforementioned CVS often has better deals than the local grocery store, plus they take coupons (though no doubling) and give store coupons to ExtraCare card users. And good ones, too, like $3 off your next purchase. Others go store hopping, buying the big sale items at each area store. Chances are you don't have this much free time. In my fantasies about life after marriage, being able to do this is front and center.

A good offense: Sunday coupons are often correlated to store sales that week. Take 10 minutes to look at the store circular, then look at your coupon stash, and plan your Bill Laimbeer-esque attack.

Get one of them cheapo coupon organizers that Wal-Mart or CVS sell for $3-$5, then file new coupons there each week. You'll have a much easier time finding that 55 cents off Wishbone dressing coupon when you need it.

BOGO: Many coupons require purchase of 2 (or more!). Save these for buy 1, get 1 sales. Technically, you're still buying 2 items. Don't let the cashier try and tell you otherwise.

Clever: 3 for $3 does not usually mean you have to buy 3. Read the fine print. If you only need 1, don't get seduced into buying more.

Swap: Why throw away unused coupons each week when you can swap with a neighbor? One man's trash is another man's 35 cents off Hot Pockets. Seriously, a friend's father does this and swears by it. Some public libraries even have coupon swap bins (not to mention vast CD and audiobook collections that are ripe for ripping onto your home PC, but that's another post).

Rebates - delicious but devious: Tivo made $5 million+ last fiscal quarter because people bought the box and did not mail in the $100 rebate form. Hint: take 5 minutes, follow the instructions to a T, and be vigilant. This same company "lost" my rebate application. One phone call later, a $100 check was en route.

Study the masters: I find this woman's work inspiring.

What I don't do:
  • Buy brand names at warehouse clubs--unless it's on sale - buying in bulk usually costs more than buying the same items on sale at grocery stores, plus you look like a jackass lugging 56 rolls of toilet paper around the parking lot. That said, Costco only marks up their prices by 15%, so if they have something on sale, go nuts.
  • Get on my knees - some recommend calling companies' toll-free #s and asking to have coupons mailed to you. In this case, I am too proud to beg.
  • Shop at all-generic stores like Aldi - My standards are high, and generic Cheerios lack that je ne sais quoi.
I do all of this not for lack of things to do, but because suburban living ain't inexpensive, and beating the system is a cheap thrill. And I do mean cheap.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Here's to you, Niantic Center

Bob Jingle's and Rain Delay's hometown reminiscences prompted me to check in with my old elementary school. Greeting visitors upon arrival was once a sound clip of their school anthem. It's low-fi, off-key, and yet hauntingly beautiful. But how could it not be, with lyrics like:
The symbol of the school we love
Is a little scallop shell
And everyday you'll hear him say
"In school you must do well!"
Yet there are traces of brainwashing throughout, with lines like:
Now let us sing 'til echoes ring
And pledge our loyalty
Did they really need us to pledge loyalty? After all, where you went to school was dictated by your neighborhood. A mass defection to Lillie B. Haynes was not possible, even though their playground ran circles around our tetherball-less tetherball pole.

So why the Stalin-esque loyalty oath? And why is the little scallop shell talking to me?

Friday, September 30, 2005

Saturday, September 24, 2005

A play on words

Cleverest headline of the week:

By the way, would anyone actually pay to see a play on words? I say only if it was a razzle-dazzle musical called "Semantics!"

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Friday, September 09, 2005

Life imitates The Office

When Gareth says it, it's funny. When the head of FEMA says it, less funny. From Time magazine's How Reliable Is Brown's Resume?:
"Brown's biography on the Federal Emergency Management Agency Web site says he had once served as an "assistant city manager with emergency services oversight"....

However, a city spokeswoman told the magazine Brown had actually worked as "an assistant to the city manager.""

"The assistant is more like an intern," Claudia Deakins told the magazine. "Department heads did not report to him."
And now he's going back to Washington to oversee future disasters. Because if anyone deserved a lateral move, it's this guy.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

If you could see it then you'd understand

Should a concert contain note-perfect performances of an artist's best-known tracks, or should they try variations to breathe new energy and passion into the songs? I just came back from a Coldplay show, and I don't know the answer.

It's good to be able to sing along, but the rocked-out "Clocks" was much more rocking than the other tunes, which were replicas of the album versions--to the point where Chris Martin started over on two songs after messing up. At least it was live, but it's ok to miss a note or fiddle with the phrasing. Else it's just a CD listening party with a fancy light show.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

The night b-school got hard

When people ask me what I'm learning in business school, I can usually tell them. The above has something to do with Competitive Advantage from Operations. Beyond that, I'll have to get back to you. And until that day comes, I will never be allowed to be in charge of anything.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Once you go wet

Kandoo, the new tool in the war against smelly kids, is in stores now. I wonder at what point in the marketing brainstorm process did Procter & Gamble say, "You know, how about using an ass-wiping frog as our logo?"

Are frogs renown for their pristine rectums? Did the focus groups really respond to a self-wiping frog rather than, say, a camel? And "Kandoo" - do kids need to be empowered for this?

I am a recent convert to wet wipes myself and have come to insist on them wherever possible. Yet I find them in few households. Do they have a stigma because they're used foremost on babies and old folks?

Instead of making wipes more appealing to kids, maybe Procter & Gamble should work on a witty, urbane wiping mascot that speaks to our generation. They could call them "Buttlers" to bring in the frat boy demographic or "Asstastics" to appeal to urbanites.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Pippi Hotstockings

Pippi Hotstockings
The original Girl Gone Wild

What I've been watching/reading/hearing this week:
  • has a new Most Interesting feature, updated daily, based on what gets the most hits, comments, links, etc. Some really incredible photography, like this, this, and this, that makes me wish I knew what to do with my life camera.
  • Guess-the-Google (via Bob Jingle) - A montage from Google Image Search appears and you guess the search term. Harder than you might think.
  • Ben Folds rocked Brooklyn to its hipster core last night. The fact that guys like him can sell out concerts without radio or MTV airplay redeems my faith in humanity. And as a marketing guy by day, it shows the power of the Internet to let artists bypass the mass media filters and connect directly with their fans. Without being on his email list, I would never know that he had new albums or was performing in the area.
  • My friend Ian spent at least part of Wednesday eating two donuts. At said concert Thursday night, he gets two girls' phone numbers. We could all learn a lot from Ian.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Sweet dreams are made of these - who am I to disagree?

This is me:
/ \
********* <-- These are the latest trends.

Note that I am on top of the latest trends.

Example: I just discovered Jack-FM and am smitten like a school boy. If I had a pencil box, I would throw it at my radio and call it ugly, the same way I treated the objects of my elementary school desires. There's no rigid format; just song after song that reawakens the spirit so pilloried by Top 40 or "The Best Hits of the 80's, 90's, and Today!"

They even post their playlist online. Just look at this lineup from earlier tonight:

11:03 PMVAN HALENRight Now
10:47 PMVERTICAL HORIZONEverything You Want
10:37 PMOINGO BOINGOWeird Science
10:29 PMMADONNARay Of Light
10:24 PMU2Sunday Bloody Sunday
10:15 PMABCPoison Arrow
10:12 PMBEATLESMagical Mystery Tour
10:07 PMHADDAWAYWhat Is Love
10:03 PMMOTLEY CRUESmokin' In The Boys Room
10:00 PMEURYTHMICSSweet Dreams(Are Made Of This)
9:55 PMWALLFLOWERSOne Headlight
9:46 PMNINE DAYSAbsolutely (Story Of A Girl)
9:41 PMBOB SEGERNight Moves
9:38 PMKOOL & THE GANGGet Down On It
9:34 PMFIXXOne Thing Leads To Another
9:27 PMB.T. EXPRESSDo It Til You're Satisfied
9:24 PMJ. GEILS BANDCenterfold
9:05 PMBLUE OYSTER CULTDon't Fear The Reaper
9:00 PMPOLICEDe Do Do Do, De Da Da Da
8:56 PMKC & SUNSHINE BANDKeep It Comin' Love
8:52 PMQUARTERFLASHHarden My Heart
8:42 PMDREAM ACADEMYLife In A Northern Town
8:35 PMCLASHShould I Stay Or Should I Go
8:31 PMCHARLIE DANIELS BANDThe Devil Went Down To Georgia
8:27 PMNO DOUBTHella Good
8:11 PMHOWARD JONESNo One Is To Blame
8:08 PM3 DOORS DOWNKryptonite
8:05 PMEARTH, WIND & FIREShining Star
8:04 PMROD STEWARTDa Ya Think I'm Sexy
8:00 PMBON JOVIBad Medicine

Not every song both rocks and rolls, but triple word score for trying something different.

2008 Update: JACK has been banished to the HD Radio dial. For shame!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

"This is NOT awesome"

Finally, some recognition for the quiet brilliance of that Geico ad.

I too was fooled on first viewing. And I too just want to make an omelet.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Goes without saying...

...but apparently not in Florida, where you need to use a billboard:

I saw this on a recent trip to Florida, and after some digging, found a whole state-sponsored website devoted to this. Is this really a problem? Reminds me of that scene in The Jerk when Steve Martin is asked to help stop the spread of cat juggling in Mexico. Come to think of it, maybe this is another Southern thing that I'll just never get, right up there with NASCAR, grits, and anti-intellectualism.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Reviews, Lil' Jon style

Wedding Crashers:

Dinner at Chili's

Nick Hornby's newest A Long Way Down:

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Yesterday's mass murderers - where are they now?

All over the mass media. To wit, the newly-convicted Klan killer...

And that Kansas serial killer, too...

Credit: all me

And to think that they were both under our noses all this time, riding Kingda Ka and asking for our favorite curse words. Be alert people.

Straight up, now tell me

Paula Abdul has, in essence, got off scot free for sleeping with that American Idol kid. Beyond a few carefully-worded denials and attempts to make light of the situation, she (or her handlers) figured out that it would all blow over. And sure enough, it did, by relentlessly sticking to talking points ("He's only doing this to promote his album!") and dishing up red herrings ("He picked out his own clothes!")

Replace "Paula Abdul" with "President Bush" and "sleeping with that American Idol kid" with "recklessly invading Iraq," and it's no wonder where her rebuttal strategy came from. From talking point discipline to red herring buffets, Dubya preceded Paula move for move, with a verbal prowess that would shame MC Skat Kat.

And yet despite so many unanswered questions, the world has moved on, even for the main players in this analogy. Just look at today's headlines:
  1. Former 'Idol' Contestant Clark Busted In Alleged Food Fight
  2. Abdul urges tough nail salon standards
  3. Bush cites 9/11 in plea for Iraq support (he's making a new argument, right??)

Monday, June 20, 2005

Picture pages

Random pictures = buckets of fun. Just add water.

"So why did you get into modeling?"

"So I could model bushy wigs."

Like Jerry Lewis and David Hasslehoff, Kamala was huge in France. L'attraction principale, some dirty Frenchmen would say.

Joe Cocker, rotten food, and lousy coffee.
I'd said one of these things is not like the other, but is that really true?

You should be...

  • Reading The Wishbones - All about getting married and growing older and not being certain about you really want. It's also set in Jersey, and the lead's main job is playing in a wedding band. What's not to like? Perotta also wrote Election, but this is his Stairway to Heaven.
  • Listening to Arnold Schwarzenegger's Total Body Workout. A 1983 gem that overlayed 80's pop hits with his accented motivational spiel. The people of California are well served.
  • Dancing. Yeah!

Saturday, June 11, 2005

More than words

How could one decade so neatly encapsulate junior high, high school, and college? By virtue of being born in 1978, the 90's were able to cover that span for me. Continuing the discussion from my 90's pre-retrospective, I offer this playlist from iTunes that are not necessarily the best, but rather the iconic songs that defined the decade.

Listening to this mix takes me all the way from my awkward phase in 6th grade to, umm, my awkward phase in college, with pauses in between at beach dances, YMCA swim meets, high school plays, dirty frat parties, long drives, and a lot of hours under the tutelage of MTV. These are my misty watercolored memories of the way we were. Can't touch this.

U Can't Touch ThisMC Hammer1990
Ice Ice BabyVanilla Ice1990
Gonna Make You Sweat
(Everybody Dance Now)
C+C Music Factory1990
The Humpty DanceDigital Underground1990
More Than WordsExtreme1990
Freedom 90George Michael1990
Mama Said Knock You OutLL Cool J1990
Let's Talk About SexSalt-N-Pepa1990
Istanbul (Not Constantinople)They Might Be Giants1990
I Wanna Sex You UpColor Me Badd1991
Don't CryGuns N' Roses1991
Now That We Found LoveHeavy D & the Boyz1991
Good VibrationsMarky Mark1991
To Be With YouMr. Big1991
O.P.P.Naughty By Nature1991
Smells Like Teen SpiritNirvana1991
Losing My ReligionR.E.M.1991
Tom's Diner
Suzanne Vega1991
Right NowVan Halen1991
SummertimeWill Smith1991
What's Up?4 Non Blondes1992
Mr. WendalArrested Development1992
No RainBlind Melon1992
Nuthin' but a "G" ThangDr. Dre1992
Hey JealousyGin Blossoms1992
Jump AroundHouse of Pain1992
JumpKris Kross1992
I Got a ManPositive K1992
Everybody HurtsR.E.M.1992
ConnectedStereo MC's1992
Life Is a HighwayTom Cochrane1992
Rump ShakerWreckx-N-Effect1992
End of the RoadBoyz II Men1993
CannonballThe Breeders1993
Insane in the BrainCypress Hill1993
Rebirth of Slick (Cool Like Dat)Digable Planets1993
Getto JamDomino1993
Ordinary WorldDuran Duran1993
What Is Love?Haddaway1993
Into Your ArmsThe Lemonheads1993
Show Me LoveRobin S.1993
TodayThe Smashing Pumpkins1993
Gin and JuiceSnoop Dogg1993
Whoomp! (There It Is)Tag Team1993
Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)Us31993
Sure ShotBeastie Boys1994
Fantastic VoyageCoolio1994
A Girl Like YouEdwyn Collins1994
LongviewGreen Day1994
Lucas With the Lid OffLucas1994
Come Out and PlayThe Offspring1994
I'll Stand by YouThe Pretenders1994
RegulateWarren G1994
You Oughta KnowAlanis Morissette1995
Breakfast At Tiffany'sDeep Blue Something1995
You Were Meant for MeJewel1995
One of UsJoan Osborne1995
Stay (I Missed You)Lisa Loeb & Nine Stories1995
Doin' ItLL Cool J1995
One Sweet DayBoyz II Men & Mariah Carey1995
FantasyMariah Carey1995
This Is How We Do ItMontell Jordan1995
SpiderwebsNo Doubt1995
LumpThe Presidents of the United States of America1995
Cotton Eye JoeRednex1995
1979Smashing Pumpkins1995
California LoveTupac & Dr. Dre1995
Song 2Blur1996
No DiggityBlackstreet1996
LovefoolThe Cardigans1996
Crash Into MeDave Matthews Band1996
Da' DipFreak Nasty1996
Killing Me Softly With His SongThe Fugees1996
Stayin' AliveN-Trance1996
WannabeSpice Girls1996
HellSquirrel Nut Zippers1996
Sucked OutSuperdrag1996
One HeadlightThe Wallflowers1996
Where Have All the Cowboys Gone?Paula Cole1996
EverlongFoo Fighters1997
Flagpole SittaHarvey Danger1997
FaithLimp Bizkit1997
Feel So GoodMase1997
The Impression That I GetMighty Mighty Bosstones1997
How BizarreOMC1997
Mo Money Mo ProblemsPuff Daddy1997
Bittersweet SymphonyThe Verve1997
Gettin' Jiggy Wit ItWill Smith1997
Gone till NovemberWyclef Jean1997
IntergalacticBeastie Boys1998
Take Me ThereBlackstreet, Mya, Mase, Blinky1998
Fire It UpBusta Rhymes1998
CrushDave Matthews Band1998
Save TonightEagle-Eye Cherry1998
The WayFastball1998
Praise YouFatboy Slim1998
Ray of LightMadonna1998
Angel of MineMonica1998
You Get What You GiveThe New Radicals1998
Ghetto SupastarPras1998
Can't Get Enough of You BabySmash Mouth1998
...Baby One More TimeBritney Spears1999
Better Days (And the Bottom Drops Out)Citizen King1999
BabylonDavid Gray1999
Blue (Da Ba Dee)Eiffel 651999
No Scrubs TLC1999
Steal My Sunshine LEN1999
NookieLimp Bizkit1999
My Own Worst EnemyLit1999
I TryMacy Gray1999
Scar TissueRed Hot Chili Peppers1999
Livin' la Vida LocaRicky Martin1999

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Backbeat the word was on the street

What is the true legacy of the 90's? I attempted to answer that back in 1997 via this college newspaper column. Was I onto something? Or just on something? And is this just an easy way to avoid writing a new post by repackaging old material? Only you can decide.

It used to take 20 years for a decade to be appreciated. The 1970’s weren’t fully appreciated until earlier this decade, when bell bottoms and John Travolta emerged from a rightfully-imposed exile. But the American attention span has gotten shorter, and we are now nostalgic for the history we can remember.

In recent years, the 1980’s have enjoyed a resurgence. On campus, WTSR is stuck in the 80’s every Monday night and The Signal frequently features a 80’s-themed crossword or column. There’s even a website ( devoted to all things from the decade of Pac-Man, Ferris Bueller, and Wang Chung (Does anyone know why, or how, we should Wang Chung tonight?).

Assuming this cycle remains constant, we will find ourselves five years into the new millennium longing for relics from the decade past, and this creates an important question: What will be the cultural legacy of the 1990’s?

Most would like to think that our cultural contribution consist of such respectable fare as Seinfeld and Pulp Fiction, but Billboard charts will tell future generations that we admired the Beverly Hills of 90210 from afar, and jumped-jumped ‘cuz the Daddy Mac made us. For every Braveheart, there has been a Dick Tracy; for every ER, a Herman’s Head. The durability of CDs and VHS ensure us that what is too painful to remember, we cannot choose to forget. So to ease our future shame, let’s relive the forgotten moments and minor celebrities of the decade so far.

The music that has entertained America for the last seven years induces the most cringing. Even though few would admit to MMMBopping with Hanson or zigazigha-ing with the Spice Girls, their recent success cannot be ignored. Similarly, the most popular group in 1990 was the New Kids on the Block. They had the right stuff, at least in the eyes of several million pre-pubescent girls. More inexplicable was the rise of Vanilla Ice, who further shamed the institution of white-boy rap, yet entertained thousands with his Ice, Ice Baby. Millions more pleaded “Please Hammer, Don’t Hurt ‘Em”, as they snatched up the compact discs and parachute pants of MC Hammer. No weatherman could have predicted the outbreak of Snow, who warned us of the Informer that had the mythical power to licky boom boom down.

Those turned off by hip hop took solace in Wilson Phillips, but the group couldn’t “Hold On” for one more album. Similarly, Right Said Fred apparently isn’t “Too Sexy” for obscurity. Also missing in action is Billy Ray Cyrus, who is doubly dishonorable for having brought both country music and line dancing into the mainstream with his “Achy, Breaky Heart.”

The alternative to all of this, so-called alternative music, also produced its fair share of one-hit wonders. Discarded Spin Doctors and 4 Non-Blondes CDs clog the clearance bins at Tower Records. These musicians are the forgotten victims of the recession and remind current chart toppers that success fades faster than an hand print on a Hypercolor t-shirt. Mr. “Butterfly Kisses,” invest your royalties wisely.

This glut of forgotten celebrities can perhaps be linked to the divorce between success and talent. This is most evident in the movies and TV programs of the 90’s. Even Clarissa can’t explain why there were once two prime-time shows featuring Bob Saget. Pauly Shore wasn’t just an MTV VJ, but also an Encino Man and a Son-In-Law. Kevin Nealon was rewarded for flubbing jokes on Saturday Night Live with not one, but two sitcoms.

Those who actually posses a modicum of talent foolishly try to expand and conquer. Witness Shaquille O’Neil as “Shaq-Fu” and “Kazaamm,” or the Bo Jackson Saturday morning cartoon show. A good lesson to take from the 90’s is that you should stick to what you know. In the case of Jackson, all Bo knows now is physical therapy.

But the 90’s have been cyclical within themselves, where washed-up stars can reinvent themselves in new guises. The artists formerly known as Marky Mark and Fresh Prince have become respectable actors. A new show starring Dan Cortese is deemed “Must-See TV.” And Bayside alum Jessie Spano has lapdanced her way back into our hearts. Perhaps snap bracelets and Skidz shorts will return to the fashion runways. Maybe Macaulay Culkin will team up with Kid N’ Play for a Home Alone House Party.

The comebacks of these and other forgotten celebrities are inevitable. Pop culture is too legit to quit.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

If you can't join them, beat them.

"Wouldn't it be funny to combine Jay Z's "99 Problems" with the 80's pop hit "99 Luftballoons?" I recently thought, chuckling to myself. Turns out someone else had the same thought. No word if they then chuckled to themself.

It's official: it's all been done before. But rather than sulk about this, I salute those who make the world even more clever-er:

To them I say: I see your ideas, and I raise you one: Nuclear Option would be a really good punk band name.

Saturday, May 28, 2005

So why should you?

Why blog? Everyone else was doing it. But as any assistant principal will tell you, that's not reason enough, so let me more fully explain "Nobody Listens to Andrew." The title comes from a book given to me at an early age. To quote an review:
"Andrew has something important to say, something he knows is true and valid and urgent. But for the life of him, he can't get any grown-ups to pay attention to him. They are all too busy, too numb and on remote control."
Now that I am older, wiser, and better looking, I have less of a listener shortage. But it would be great to have an outlet for the unfinished thoughts and bon mots that cross my mind.

And so here I am. Rock you like a hurricane.