Tuesday, March 28, 2006

A Friday of Total Unfunnery

I apologize for the total lack of bloggy goodness over the past two weeks. Not one to take ownership of my own faults/laziness, I'll just blame someone totally random.

So Mrs. Gambino (my first grade teacher), I'm looking straight at you.

Deflection of culpability aside, I thought I'd share my Unfun Friday (tm) with you, my loyal reading audience of non-unfun. I traveled to a certain unnamed institution of higher education that fateful day for a day conference on Immigration. For the sake of people who may Google this school's name and link my vitriol with...well, me...we'll just say this school's name rhymes with Rons Topkins Zuniversity, (located in Faltimore, Scaryland).

I made pretty good time driving to Topkins, probably because I drove at speeds normally reserved for travelling back to 1985 in a Delorean. Getting there early enough, I foolishly figured that the complimentary coffee would be...you know...hot. Fortunately, they also ran out of milk, so at least my cup of joe couldn't turn into a Javacicle.

The morning session was scheduled to run roughly two hours, which was scheduled to consist of five government officials giving us updates on Immigration matters. Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your perspective), each official's update sounded something like, "Well, I don't really have any updates."

Special update: The government is clueless. Now back to our regularly scheduled bloggery.

The afternoon session didn't yield much new information either. If you ever need proof, be sure to ask for my grand total of one page of notes, all surrounded by drawings of the 7-Up Cool Spot.

"Dan?" you ask.
"Why are you drawing an outdated 90s mascot?"
"Because my stick figure looked like shit. Now stop asking questions."

Since my brain could not possibly take in any more information (tongue firmly planted in cheek), I left a couple of minutes early, figuring that I could perhaps beat rush hour traffic.

Yeah, you know where this one is going.

After discovering that Baltimore doesn't feel the need to adequately inform its driving public of the exact whereabouts of I-95, I eventually made it to said highway, cruising along at only subDelorean speeds. All of the sudden, I went from subDelorean to subcorpse, as traffic came to a complete standstill for 10 miles for alleged "emergency road construction."(I say alleged because I never saw one worker or road cone.)

Once I escaped this ten mile stretch of me coming up with very new and creative combinations of cuss words, it was smooth sailing...for about 10 minutes. Suddenly, I hit another patch of standstill suckery. Imagine my shock (and my even more creative usage of said swear words) when I discovered it was an old-fashioned gaper delay, as my entire stretch of 95-North decided to gawk at an accident on 95-South. All told, my anticipated 90-minute trip home turned into three-and-a-half hours of suck. As I finally approached a home I now love more than ever, I thought about all of the better uses of time I could have made during that 195-minute stretch. I could have...
  • Watched 13 episodes of Robot Chicken
  • Sat through one full sitting of Fellowship of the Ring, gotten up to go to the bathroom, and start watching The Two Towers
  • Taken 6.5 thirty-minute naps
  • Lost all my money on online poker, only to subsequently figure out what I'm going to do with the next 185 minutes of my time
  • Taken 3.25 sixty-minute naps
  • Not sat in traffic
Fortunately, I made up for doing nothing sitting in my car by doing nothing sitting on my couch all weekend. Go me.

Until next time...

Monday, March 13, 2006

Dan and the Amazing Multisubject Dreamblog

A lot of ground to cover, so let's blog...

I Have the Power!

Last week, a group of us went to Hibachi's to celebrate Mike's impending journey to Hawaii, where he will be living for the forseeable future. Before dinner (and before the hostess uttered the dumbass comment I referenced in my last blog), Mike bestowed a gift upon me that can't be wrapped or placed in some ubergirly Hallmark Gift Bag...

Mike gave me his powers.

To provide a backstory, Mike received his powers last year from Bill, who was the first in our inner circle to move to the land of leis and publicly roasted pigs. Ever since Mike made his decision to also make the Hawaiian journey, he promised that he would pass those same powers down to me. True to his word, Mike waved his hands at me in a spastic motion, which ultimately granted me the same mystical functions that were given to him.

"Ooh, but Dan?"

Yes, hypothetical creation of my own warped mind?

"What do those powers entail?"

Glad you asked!

The powers include (but are not limited to):
  • The ability to eat with chopsticks
  • A heightened sense of laziness
  • A more keen awareness of random websites that almost no one else knows about
  • And much more!
In terms of my chopstick prowess, I have been able to use them as a suitable fork replacement for a good year or two. Yet, I won't lie...I felt a heightened sense of chopstick-grabbing ability almost immediately, as I ended up eating with said wooden utensils twice in one week. As for my laziness? Well, it has taken me five days to write about my new abilities, so I think that pretty much speaks volumes about the validity of my newfound powers.

Oh, and visit www.bash.org. Good stuff.

We also took one last group journey to Echelon Mall's cookie stand on Friday, where Mike ordered 30 cookies to bring a taste of New Jersey to Hawaii. I normally would apologize to all Hawaiians for even insinuating any impending relationship with Jersey, but the cookie supercedes all. It's that simple.

On a semi-serious note, I do sincerely want to wish Mike all the best of luck in his new life in Hawaii. We've had a ton of laughs and good times in the four years that we've known each other (mostly at the expense of other people/lifeforms). So to quote famed Hawaiian philosopher Don Hoe...


"Welcome to Hawaii."

What Are You Doing?

Last night, I had my final performance for my Advanced Improv Class with Comedysportz. I don't know if I can speak for the rest of the team, but I felt everyone did an absolutely fantastic job. On a personal level, last night was the culmination of a year-and-a-half of working towards a dream of mine, which was to perform on a ComedySportz stage. I mean, only in improv could I get away with the following without people completely questioning my sanity:
  • Make up words like "tantamountly"
  • Imitate the Crocodile Hunter in the middle of WaWa
  • Profess my desire to figure skate in Torino to the melodic stylings of "Endless Love"...followed by a romantic dinner consisting of snow cones
  • Challenge someone to tackle an antelope
On second thought, people probably thought I was nuts. And they would be right.

Until next time...

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Early Frontrunner for Moronic Quote of the Year

Every year, I compile the most inane and idiotic quotes uttered by this allegedly human race, with the intention of posting the dumbest quote at year's end. Unfortunately, 2006 had so far been slow on the idiot quotient, leading me to wonder if the world had suddenly gone smart.

Wonder no more, as here is the first of what I sincerely hope will be many dumbass quotes for 2006...

(Dan approaches the hostess at Hibachi's)
Dan: Hi, my party isn't here yet, but I would like to reserve a table.
Hostess: Sure, how many people will be in your party?
Dan: I believe five.
Hostess: And would you like to be seated together or separately?

No wiseass remark from me could possibly justify what she said, so I'll just end it here.

Until next time...

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Dear Jack Clown...

Remember this guy from my Red Bank posting?

I had neglected to mention that our crazy clan dubbed the freaky-looking bastard, "Jackoff the Clown" (for obvious reasons).

Now remember this place?

Yeah, so do my bowels, which I suspect will have remnants of those pint-sized atrocities called Sliders swimming around in them for years to come.

So half-jokingly/half-because-I-have-no-life, I used WhiteCastle.com's feedback section to complain about the alleged food their establishment served to me on that fateful Saturday afternoon. I don't remember the exact verbiage I used, but I'm sure I used some combination of the phrases "Harold and Kumar," "poison," and "hours on the toilet." I signed the email as "Jack Clown", in tribute to New Jersey's favorite son. Considering my diatribe was blatantly sarcastic and signed by a guy named Jack Clown, I expected that this would be the last correspondence I would ever have with said evil institution.

Until yesterday...

When I looked at the front of the envelope, I truly didn't want to believe it. Yes, the name on the mailing address was "Jack Clown." Yes, the sender had a logo strangely resembling White Castle's, right down to the exact spelling of the words "White Castle." It wasn't until I opened the letter that my eyes focused on a letter truly made me question both my sanity and theirs....

Note: I don't have the letter in front of me, so I am paraphrasing it to the best of my recollection. Considering I read the letter about 35 times, I'm sure this is pretty close to what was actually written...

"Dear Jack Clown:

We recently received your feedback about your recent dining experience in White Castle. We are deeply concerned that you did not have a positive experience in our restaurant. Please contact us immediately at (some 1-800 number) so that we can rectify the situation."

Best Regards,
White Castle Customer Service"

Deep down, I know I should just let this charade end now. This is obviously a joke that's just been taken too far, and I should cut it off now while I'm ahead.

So I'll let you know how the phone call goes in a few days...

Until next time...

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

New Yawk, New Yawk...

On Saturday, I went to New York City with Mike, Rusty, Chrissy, and Shana (eventually meeting up with our friend Nikki and her dad). In true form, it was a memorable trip, mainly because of our complete and total ability to take the stupid and make it even stupider (for our own twisted enjoyment and to the chagrin of the rest of civilized society).

Of course, getting to New York required a return to America's Urinal (tm), New Jersey so that we could take the train from Trenton (America's Urinal Cake (tm)) to NYC. After an hour-and-a-half of passing by roughly 48 trillion townhouse developments (give or take), we finally arrived in Penn Station. Now there's no delicate way to really say this, so I'll just come out and say it...I had to pee. REALLY badly. Apparently, two cups of coffee and a 1-liter bottle of Diet Cherry Coke aren't conducive to a stable bladder. Who knew?

We followed every damn restroom sign in Penn Station to a tee. Normally, I'd try to follow the urine scent, but I quickly remembered that every inch of train station floor was somebody's bathroom at one point or another. I began to realize why; they too tried to follow the signs that would allegedly lead you to the nearest restroom.

Eventually, we made our way to the ass-opposite end of the train station...only to find a line outside the door. Though the floor was starting to look like a viable option, I also knew that I really wasn't in the mood to get arrested for public urination. I already had a long week. So we backtracked to the KMart, figuring that they must have a bathroom. Yes, there is a two-story KMart in Penn Station. It could have been a two-story S&M Parlor for all I cared, as long as they had a damn bathroom. We walked a good distance through the store, looking for anyone who could possibly lead me to the Holy Grail. I finally approached an employee, who responded to my desperate query with one simple word...


I wanted to cry, but I'm pretty sure my bladder somehow held my tears for hostage. We walked all the way back to the original restroom, where the line was now gone. I did my thing and marveled at my rediscovered ability to walk straight again. So off to NYC we go...

By request (i.e., mine), our first stop was Toys R Us. Hey, when I said, "I don't want to grow up, I want to be a Toys R Us kid," I meant it, dammit. After all, there are a million toys in Toys...I'll stop now.

If you've never been to this particular TRU, it is, in the words of modern philosopher Will Ferrell, "Ginormous." Three stories of tear-inducing glee, it is the mecca of awesomeness. Where else can you see such structural beauties as an Incredible Hulk made out of Legos?

You're probably thinking the same thing I am...it's a much more realistic-looking Hulk than the one from the recent movie.

Before I could completely regress to my childhood, we exited the holy land and went to meet up with our friend Nikki, who was in town with her Dad to take an acting seminar. While we waited, we stopped in an adjacent arcade, which was only memorable because it was the first (and last) time I paid a buck to play one game of Ms. Pac-Man. Mike rightfully pointed out that I did have two extra lives off the bat, but that was quickly negated by the fact that eact power pellet lasted roughly 5 nanoseconds. Of course, in typical Dan style, I didn't hesitate to tell the Miss how I felt about her money-grubbing evilness...

We finally met up with Nikki and her Dad and decided to go to Little Italy for lunch. We ultimately decided on a tiny Italian joint, called Il Something or Other. Right from the get-go, it was a creepy-ass experience, as the waiter stood next to our table and stared at us for fifteen minutes while we all decided what we wanted to order. I don't remember his name, so we'll just call him Mario, mainly because Mike and I wanted to request that a staff member play the Super Mario Bros. theme on an accordian.

After we placed our order, Mario brought out drinks...for half of our table. After another ten minutes of eating bread without any liquid to wash it down, one of us requested that the other half of the table be blessed with the drinks they've already committed themselves to pay for. Mario didn't seem too happy with our request. Perhaps his mind was preoccupied because he found out that his princess was in another castle, but that didn't stop us from ultimately giving him a $4 tip for a $75 meal. To add insult to insult, we left said tip in $1 tokens that we all received on the subway. It probably shouldn't have shocked us that I later spotted him bursting out the front door, either looking for us or to signal the nearest mobster to cap our cheap asses.

So if you ever travel with me to New York City, I think we can cross Little Italy off of our list of "Places to Go."

After dropping Nikki and her Dad off at Penn Station, the rest of us took the subway around various parts of New York. It was on said subway that the creation of the nation's next big craze was born...

Warning: The next section contains excess amounts of stupidity. If you no longer want to be associated with me in any fashion after reading this, I completely understand.

If you've never been on a New York subway, there honestly isn't much to do outside of listening to homeless guys sing love songs for money. Mike decided he was going to entertain himself by balancing a soda bottlecap on his head. I'm guessing sad minds think alike, because all Mike had to say were the words, "Who else," before I instinctively put a bottlecap on my head as well. At this point, it was a battle to see who was pathetic enough to balance the bottlecap long enough on a moving train in front of other human beings. I answered that question with a resounding victory, as the cap fell off Mike's head as we exited the train.

Yes, we had planned to keep the caps on our head as we walked amongst the citizens and tourists of New York City. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed and we didn't play the game while walking. Oh no. We waited until we got on another subway train before we had our rematch. Mike won the next three one-on-one matches, though his third victory remains disputed in my eyes; he had something to rest his head upon, while I quickly discovered that air is no cushion for a strained neck.

One would think that four matches of the most pathetic game in civilized history would suffice and that we'd quickly grow tired of our own sad states of being. Well, Mr. One has obviously never met us. Not only did Mike and I want a rematch on the train ride back to Trenton, but Rusty decided he wanted in on the action as well.

You're probably saying to yourself, "No one can be that sad. I want photographic proof." Ok, you asked for it...


Mike and Me

My attempt to flash the camera in Mike's eyes so that he would lose

Unfortunately for my ubercompetitive self, I was the first one eliminated, losing my bottlecap about 45 minutes into the contest. Of course, my loss freed me up to take yet one more picture of this sad, sad endeavor...

The girls' faces just about say it all

We weren't without our admirers. As one kid exited the train with his mom at an earlier stop, he looked at us and said, "Good luck with your game, man." Clearly, from the look on his face, we touched this kid's life. And clearly, from the look on his mom's face, she wished she had a girl.

After one hour and 11 minutes, Rusty's cap fell off almost immediately after we departed the train, making Mike the Ultimate Grand Champion Guy of Capsize (the now-official name of the game). However, Mike wouldn't leave with a memento of his victory, as Rusty kicked Mike's bottlecap underneath the train tracks. I normally wouldn't condone unsportsmanship, but I lost, so I had zero problem with it. You're probably saying, "Ok, sore loser," to which I stick my tongue out at you.

Poor sportsmanship aside, we all had a fantastic day. As usual, I'm sure there are details of the day that I've forgotten, but I'll stop now, as this blog is getting Moby Dick-like in length.

I know I could have chosen a better choice of words there. But you're talking to a guy who spent a good portion of his day in New York balancing a bottlecap on his head. It's just easier to keep your expectations low.

Until next time...