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Monthly Archives: May 2008

Sometimes, just when you think things are going are your way, that things are turning around, and that the there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, you get a rude wake-up call the light is a train, and it’s continuing to head in the same direction you can’t seem to stop going in.

Not to bring everyone down, of course.

Anyway, last week, my friend and I walked into a bar where there was dancing on the bar. One of the ladies dancing on the bar caught me nodding off a little bit and not paying attention to her dance skills. It was a late night indeed, and a school night, but there was no excuse not to look at her, except I was tired. I turned down her suggestion of a shot to wake me up, and found the whole thing amusing.

Later as I came back from the bathroom, she grabbed me, and we struck up a conversation for quite some time. Not only was she attractive, but she seemed intelligent and funny as well. Someone I would like to get to know a lot more, I think, on some level…yes, either the cheap tawdry one that lasts for a fleeting evening or a maybe, just maybe, a special one that lasts quite some time and adds depth and shading to your outlook on life and your experiences, no matter what the outcome. One never knows.

Anyway, I went over to make sure my buddy was okay. He said he was fine, except for the fact that the bartender, who we were familiar with, was treating him quite coldly. He had gotten her phone number in some drunken episode quite a while back and had apparently never called her. Oh well. I didn’t think much of it.

So I went back to the young lady. Quickly it dawned on m as things were different. Very different. As in , “I have work to do and have to get up early” different. When I asked if I could get in contact with her again, I was told, “Maybe you should ask {bartender’s name}, she’ll let you know.” I went home stunned, too drunk to realize what had happened.

I had my earth salted! More precisely, I had been cockblocked by a vengeful bartender. All because my buddy had never called her. Great. Way to exact revenge on him. Ohhh, strike another mightly blow for sisterhood, you showed that womanizing bastard up good by cockblocking some dude who was not even there to see the number exchange! Woooo! You got his friend! That’ll keep him up nights! That’ll learn him!

Well, another mighty blow for the female race, as I’m sure that woman will find somebody much more deserving with less antagonizing drinking buddies. What a rescue on your part. Congratulations. You’re our latest Random Person of Recent Times! And by congratulations, I mean hitting women is wrong, so I wouldn’t consider it, so I’ll just harbor this grudge until such time as a proper but classy revenge can be extracted.

 

 

 

 

 

It’s incredible how much influence the Bush 43 White House has had on American politics. Yes, administratively and in every other practical way, it’s been a failure. But if we have learned nothing from George W. and his posse, we have learned that if you keep hammering the same message home over and over and stay “on message” people will eventually begin to believe. Talking the talk in short, easily catchy sound bites will beat walking the walk any day of the week. A strategy the Bush administration has used from the beginning, presenting things as inevitable and true because you keep saying them was very effective in pushing ineffective policies.

And now, Hillary Clinton has picked up the ball by making people believe that she could still get the Democratic nomination. She keeps hammering home her electability, and she keeps hammering home how important her cause is for women and that if you say she she should look at the writing on the wall and that she should probably get out, you are wrong and obviously sexist.

I guess that’s easier than saying:

“Look, we were caught flatfooted, okay? Some no-term black guy Senator from Chicago who won his seat because his opponent tried to take his wife to orgies gives one decent speech at the 2004 convention, and all of a sudden he’s got the biggest money-printin’ machine since Starbucks Coffee! How were we supposed to know he had a more organized and disciplined organization than a Nazi with OCD in Iowa! Then he gave some more awesome speeches, he got in good with the young kids who think a black president is possible because of “24”, and he started winning all these primaries. They probably think he’ll hire goddamn Jack Bauer to head the NSA. Now my, er, our only hope is that the superdelegates realize he can’t win when the average white working-class guy goes into that voting booth and, despite that fact that John McCain is tied too deeply with the party that has spent most of the last decade running this country into the ground, just can’t pull the lever for a black man to president. ”

So she has to keep riling up the feminists. Making the case against the eventual nominee. Hoping and praying that Obama makes a mistake of major proportions. Like a highly favored football team who underestimates her opponent, only to find themselves deep in the fourth quarter needing a series of improbable turnovers, Hillary Clinton still has a chance. At least that what Bill keeps telling me.

 

 

 

 

 

If you miss the days of Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor

 

A different kind of \'pen

like I do, you can’t not be excited about what’s going on in the Bronx, where a salt-and-pepper comedy duo for a new generation has emerged. Now appearing nightly in the last year of Yankee Stadium, it’s Kyle Farnsworth, 

 

 

 

 

and Latroy Hawkins!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(sorry that LaTroy’s photo is larger, but Kyle’s taller in real life.) Anyway, after years, of honing their comedy acts as “reliable relievers” on the smaller stages like Detroit, Atlanta, and Chicago, they’re finally together on the big stage! These guys make “Who’s On First” by Abbott and Costello seem like a eulogy by comparison.

And now that director Joe Girardi has decided to take Joba Chamberlain out of the eighth inning to start, enjoy the laughter as the Yankees rely on these two to piece together a bridge to Mariano Rivera. If you thought “Silver Streak” was a dangerous cross country trip, wait until the team’s West Cost swing! The only one that’ll be “Stir Crazy” is Hank Steinbrenner! The fans will “Hear No Evil, See No Evil” as the team careens toward .500! (Decorum and respect demands we not make an “Another You” joke”.)


Ok, let me just get on the record for my first sports post of any sort in ages. Yeah I used to be on Sportsblahg, then tax season happened, then I forgot my password, then I stopped blogging entirely. (Big ups to the Nate for keeping things alive, by the way.) If I can get back into some sort of groove here, maybe I’ll try jumping back on the ‘blahg by getting Chris to give me my password, which, no doubt, he will change to reflect the current pitiful state of the Yankees. Until then, these two nuggets.

I’m not saying Willie Randolph doesn’t deserve to be canned, because the team has performed poorly ever since last July, pretty much. Just know that it’s not actually going to fix the Mets. For all the carping about the big salaries the Mets have, other than Johan Santana, who’s really getting the job done? Willie Randolph is going to teach Delgado and Beltran to hit in a timely fashion again? Is Willie relieving, since the ‘pen hasn’t exactly been lights out?  The fact is the Mets are a flawed team in that they rely on too many old guys. Any team that has 1,008-year old Moises Alou as an essential part of their plan is screwed from the get-go. But look, I’m sure Jim Fregosi or Bobby Valentine will turn this thing around. They’ll light a fire under the butts of the old veterans…after it melts their hemorrhoids.

 

 

Every once in a while someone will make some comment about the fall of our drinking group, only to see it stay alive and thrive as a loose motley collection of people growing together, if not growing up, then growing our livers. Only a fool would pronounce the gang dead.

Since I am merely a clown, I’m just putting it on life support.

Times are bad, y’all. People hiding from the party, people worried about their status at the party, people actually being afraid and intimidated by the beautiful people. “We don’t belong here,” is a refrain I heard, hopefully, half-jokingly too often at a party a building you may have heard about recently.

What? The? Fuck?

Since when were we intimidated by people? (Mostly gay ones, actually, not that there’s anything wrong with that.) If I heard one more time about how someone couldn’t handle how beautiful the people were, I’d drink another beer. Oh, wait, that’s what I did. I mean, we never fit in! That was our calling card! We brought the party and then we dominated it until we were kicked the fuck out. That’s how we used to roll.

But like an athlete past his prime who knows it, we were hesitant, unsure of ourselves not knowing if we still had it anymore. Like George and Weezie, we had finally gotten a piece of the pie, but we thought it would be too fattening, so we ran away. Beans done burn on the grill because we goddamn abandoned it.

Where was the pride? Oh well. After years of wondering if the party is about to end, I’m getting the feeling that’s a legitimate question. Well, maybe it’s a fitting end, but I can’t believe a group that has survived near-arrests, jungle juice, ill-advised hookups, broken teeth, blood feuds, mean practical jokes, and Schaefer is going to be beaten by the greatest apartment building ever.

Let’s not dwell on how long it’s been, shall we, and get right to it.

At Key Bar in the East Village, we decided to take seats near the bathroom. As we here hanging out, a woman walked by, sized up BrianVan and may myself and started chatting. The conversation was inconsequential, as no one was interested. She was a bit drunk, and a bit weird. at some point, introductions happened. That’s when she noticed my front teeth.

For those of you who have never seen me, I sport a gap in between my front teeth. A little wider than Letterman’s and Madonna’s, not as big as Michael Strahan’s. It doesn’t bother me as much as it used to, but it can look horrendous in certain photos. It definitely plays better in person, although if I ever ended up on TV, I probably would get it fixed.

Anyway, as soon as I laughed, (at her I assure you, not with her), she said “Oh!”

I was like, “What?”

“I see that thing you have in your mouth.”

I figured it was the gap in my teeth, so I said, “What about it?”

“It means you eat pussy!”

Well, that was the end of the conversation, because I didn’t know what that meant. A year or two ago, some skanky shot girl at a bar said the gap in my front teeth held some sort of secret about my sexual prowess. 

Now look, I’m not saying that I don’t eat pussy, or that you won’t generally get a top-notch effort from me, ladies (a high number of whiskey slushes, wines, and PBR’s notwithstanding), but do I really have to wonder about the message my front teeth are sending? Really? 

 

 

 

 

The thoughtful Brooklyn Gal recently wrote a post about whether or not life in New York City is worth the inordinate expense. A fair question, one I even asked myself before I decided to come back here after college. 

Of course, if thoughtfulness isn’t anything, it’s contagious. While some commenters and linkers have managed to stay on topic, some have taken the opportunity to express their frustrations that they aren’t wealthy and rich and fabulous and have a man/woman and blame it on New York City like Mets fans scapegoat Willie Randolph. 

Whenever I get exasperated at this crap, I’m told, “You’re biased; you’re from here.” Damn straight, but that doesn’t make your arguments the least bit legitimate! At least I am upfront about where I’m coming from! Whenever I hear or read some wistful musing on how life might be better elsewhere, the illogic of the arguments somehow aren’t important. If you’re from somewhere else in America and you whine about how tiny your apartment is, how hard it is to save money, how ambitious you have to be to live here, how people here drink too much, how people here don’t grow up and aren’t truly “mature”, and how people aren’t about committed relationships here, you are an idiot. Period. The comments box is down there, you can email me at rumandpopcorn@gmail.com. 

You knew it would be expensive when you moved here. Shut it. You knew you’d be living in tiny apartments or shacking with roomies well into your thirties. Zip it.  You came here because you thought you were too big-time for whatever corner of the earth you were from, so you came here to pursue your dreams. There’s no shame if you haven’t tried and not made it; there’s no shame in deciding you want a slower, more affordable lifestyle and leaving. But if you’re here, put a sock in it. You think that people don’t drink in other parts of the country? Are you insane…where do you think you got YOUR massive tolerance from? Pipe down! People here don’t grow up? You mean like the guy who has three kids and just got Rock Band who used to live down the street from you. That’s great. Shut up. No one is committed here and ever gets married. That’s great. Can you break the news to all my friends who got married, especially ones just recently? (Congrats, Adam and Susan, you made the blog in a completely unsentimental fashion! You know I would give you guys nothing less!) Stop it!

When life isn’t going your way, it’s easy to scapegoat New York. It’s loud, rude, and crazy, and Republican mayors can try all they want, but they’ll never totally erase the faint stench of urine from certain corners of the city. But until you look in the mirror to take on your problems, you’re just going to carry your problems to Ocala or Sheboygan or Duluth or Rockville or Arlington or Helena or San Jose. And you’ll still have your problems without being in the place you know deep in your heart is the greatest city in the world. And then you’re really fucked.

 

If you haven’t tuned me out of your RSS feed, then yes, I am back. Why? Who cares? Why was I gone? Who cares? Why have the classic reruns on Rum and Popcorn died? It’ll be back in syndication next week, promise. No one cared anyway. I did neglect my readers, all eight of you for a while, and for that I am sorry. Of course, there’s no guarantee that I’ll stick around, but I’m going to, I swear, redouble my efforts. Nothing is worse for someone who likes to write than not writing, and sometimes I have to find this out the hard way when all the BS that life throws your way goes without comment. Even if it winds up being spit in the wind, as most of our blogs humbly are, the point is, you got that spit out of your system, and it doesn’t fester and turn into tooth decay.

Miss that level of imagery? Well strap yourself in for the next few posts. Hopefully, you will be entertained and for me, this will be cheaper than the state-mandated anger management course I would otherwise have to take for slugging some jackass in the face. Friend. So good to see ya!

 

 

It’s a dark and stormy night. Well, it’s more like just raining steadily. Many of my friends pretty much have better things to do tonight, some of it involving dressing up. I am bored.

This is the kind of night where I would kind of consider going out and drinking alone. And by would, I mean, very likely. The proliferation of cheap bars in my neighborhood makes it a serious leisure option for me. I’ve learned to take advantage of it. Being alone, yet out amongst people, is always an interesting thing to do. Sometimes you even get to interact and meet other people.

Other times you interact with no one. You get just drunk and take note of your observations. Like the Washington Wizards fan I saw at Redd’s Tavern last week. I had never seen one in person before, and he was really into it, living and dying with each possession, frantically calling his buddy when their star player went down. Such passion for a franchise I had only known for ridiculously changing their name from “Bullets” about a decade ago.

I’m not really looking for adventure and excitement tonight, but I guess there is always a tinge of possibility when you head out to a public house  and venture outside on a rainy night. Even if you do nothing, at least you can say you did something. So I’ll post this, and go, and I’ll report if anything interesting happens, which it won’t. Sometimes sitting around with your own thoughts is not necessarily a good thing. But I guess that is also what a television is for, right? Nah, not really, not in the age of the DVR, where I can catch with the shows I want to watch and zoom past the commercials I want to miss. Whatever happens to you when you’re outside can’t be altered and fast-forwarded through. That’s why you have to make good things happen when you’re out.

We shall see.