Bomb Cyclone > Nor’Easter

I have no idea who handle’s winter’s PR, but calling a really bad snowstorm a “bomb cyclone?” Genius. We haven’t seen an innovation in the snowstorm-naming game since whoever came up with blizzard.

While we’re on the subject of weirdly-named winter storms, who came up with “Nor’Easter?” Why not call it a “Northeaster?” What is with the Nor follwed by an apostrophe?

Maybe it was thought up by Francis Scott Key. He put “o’er” in The Star Spangled Banner. Nor’easter is in the same, “weird looking word with an apostrophe in the middle of it” phylum. I can hear him talking to his friends now: “Guys, guys, guys…forget the ‘th.'” We’re going to do to North Easter what o’er did to over.”

From here on out, any snowstorm is a bomb cyclone to me. It’s too much fun to say. The only possible improvement would be to call it a “bomb ass cyclone.” I may have to write a letter to the National Weather Service on that one.

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Christmas Clocks and Droopy Trees

In the month of December I get a 10 second reminder of the holiday season at the top of every hour.

There’s a Christmas clock on our mantle that plays a different Christmas tune every hour. Before Christmas? It’s a sweet reminder of the holiday season. After Christmas?

Haunting. Absolutely haunting.

Hearing “Joy to the World” at 6:00 a.m. on January 3rd is like I entered into my own personal horror movie trailer. After that I’m expecting a psychotic doll or clown to pop out at me to complete the inevitable cycle.

After New Year’s, hearing the Christmas clock reminds me there’s little utility to this thing. Why is an hourly reminder of the fact that it’s Christmas needed? Who came up with this product? “Well, if there’s ever a time people need reminding of Christmas, it’s December. Our target audience? People who consume zero media other than clocks in their home.”

I love Christmas, including all the decorations and lights. It’s tough to let it go and take down the decorations, but you have to do it. “Here, remove this reminder of the next time you as an adult will get a present from anyone: 11 months from now.”

Nothing crystallizes this problem like having a real Christmas tree. At the beginning of December our tree looked great and smelled wonderful. Now? I’m almost rooting for a fire. Screw it, I’ve got a fire extinguisher and at least the needles won’t get everywhere.

The branches are drooping and snapping off. The needles are going everywhere. If this thing were in worse shape it would be heading to Planet Fitness for five days in January before giving up on its New Year’s resolutions. I can picture it now, struggling to get through 10 minutes on the elliptical on the easiest setting: “New year, new tree!”

The tree isn’t to blame here. I’m the neglectful owner. If I’m being honest, the watering’s have been much less frequent. I wouldn’t be shocked if someone walking by our window calls Tree Protective Services on me. “You’re going to jail, and we’re putting this tree in a good home. And by good home we mean a home with running water and access to cups. Or, you know…the side of the street.”

I’m Just Not That Into You, Queens Public Library

Don’t you dare read another word past this sentence. This post is for the eyes of the Queens Public Library and no one else.

A few years back I sign up for a Queens Public Library card. Just recently, they started emailing me on an almost daily basis. They’re coming on a little too strong.

Ease up, QPL.

How many updates could a library possibly have that would necessitate daily reminders? “Good afternoon, it’s Tuesday. The books are still free. Sincerely, the Library.”

I want to unsubscribe, but I’m afraid the library will think I’m stupid after that. Anyone who unsubscribes is clearly illiterate, right? I’m worried I’ll get a follow up email: “Oh we see the problem. You don’t want to check out any books because you can’t read, can you? Ain’t that right, idiot?” Then I go check out 200 books at once just to compensate.

And when you want to remind people to use a non-Internet based resource, the Internet has to be the worst way to do that. “Oh  man, I’m glad I got a reminder about what a great source of knowledge the library is. Let me check it out right after I read my next email. What’s this email about? “The 10 Best Cryptocurrencies to Invest in Right Now?” Well, that probably seems more worthwhile than reading some old ass Charles Dickens novel. Back to Google it is.”

How to Improve This Country’s Public Bathroom Situation

I can’t believe no one’s thought of this yet.

To be clear – I’m of the opinion that I don’t care what bathroom a person uses. But I’ve got an idea that would appease both sides of this whole weird controversy.

It’s simple: lose gendered bathrooms. Lose common area bathrooms, period. Make all public bathrooms a series of unisex pod-like stalls in a row. The most important part of this innovation? No more urinals. All stalls, baby.

Here’s why this would work: what man in his right mind would complain about urinals ceasing to exist? Nobody’s going to bat for urinals. “Having stalls fixes a lot of problems, but possibly seeing a guy’s dick out of your peripherals is every man’s right!”

Urinals are one of mankind’s worst innovations. It’s like someone saw somebody else going to the bathroom and thought, “How do we turn this into a group activity?”

Not to mention it would eliminate the abomination known as the trough urinal. You ever use one of these, guys? It’s like competitive peeing. Every guy in the football stadium is teaming up to relieve themselves in a giant floor sink. Don’t think we’d have a problem with those going away either.

Too expensive, you say? I think we’d be find room in the budget for it. Remember, most politicians are old white guys. All you gotta do is say, “If we pass this new “All Stalls” bill, you won’t have to pee next to a guy while trying to simultaneously not look at his junk AND peak at his junk to make sure it isn’t bigger than yours.” That bill would be passed faster than something really fast. I don’t know, imagine some obscure fast guy Dennis Miller would reference doing something really quickly.

See, these are the types of ideas that make me think I should run for President one day.

I Kinda Respect Muskets

musket.jpg

Of all the weapons from olden times, is there a more endearing one than a musket?

It was a gun that sucked as a gun. Any weapon intended for one on one combat that takes a lot of preparation is kind of more adorable than terrifying. How can you be scared of a guy who tells you, “I”m going to KILL YOU!!!! Ya know…as soon as I take the next 45 minutes to carefully pour gunpowder into this thing and use a weird thing to press it in!”

The funniest thing about muskets is how they attached a knife at the end of it. It’s like the musket inventor was saying, “Look, I already know this is going to be a shitty gun. That’s why we’ve got an entirely different weapon on it too.” Come to think of it, it’s really inconvenient to use as a knife. It’s long, and stabbing somebody with it would be really hard. So basically, it’s not just a bad gun, it’s a bad knife too. it’s got the distinct honor of being two types of weapons, both of which it’s horribly bad at being.

How did the Revolutionary War ever end? It was a war with two armies using the least efficient weapon ever invented. Did the Americans win they decided, “Fuck it, just use normal knives. It’s way better of a knife than the musket, and real guns are a long way away from being invented. We may as well just rock with these. Between our shitty weapons and these fucking wigs that keep getting in our eyes this stupid ass war is never going to end.”

My main point is if I ever got dropped into the middle of that war after hoping in a time machine, I’d be the guy with a switchblade yelling, “I’m telling you guys, this is better!”

What’s With the Lack of Variety in Politically Motivated Russian Murders?

poison

Allegedly, Russian agents acting on Vladimir Putin often poison opponents of his using polonium. The most famous case was in 2004. My question: don’t they ever get sick of poisoning people? It’s gotta get old after awhile.

Wouldn’t he want to find a new way to do it? Just to shake things up a little? When the KGB pitches the poisoning to Putin, does he ever sigh and go, “I mean…I guess. Look, fellas. Come on. How about a little originality? How about a little variety? Let’s spice up this assassination! Can you at least wear fake moustaches while you do it?”

Eventually, maybe we’ll see a news story like: “A Russian official is dead today. He was eaten by a bear on a moutainside after being thrown out of a zeppelin, after being lit aflame, by Vladimir Putin. In a statement, Putin said he had nothing to do with the death even though there were many eyewitnesses who saw him do it.He added he was saddened by the ‘totally awesome’ way the guy perished.”

Another question: if they have poison control centers in Russia, they’ve got to have a picture of Putin on the wall somewhere, right? Or maybe they have a green cartoon Putin face on a sticker, like we used to have with Mr. Yuk in America.

Russian hospitals should set up a separate wing set up just for this. You check in at the ER: “Gun shot? Go to your right. Polonium exposure due to your political stance? Over here.” Then you step over and it’s just a trap door leading you to a flaming pit. Or into a waiting zeppelin, where Putin is smashing his fist in his palm and smiling menacingly.

As reprehensible as it all is, in a weird way you have to kind of respect them for it. It’s been done so many times, at this point we all know. And yet they still keep doing it. That’s a real commitment to a specific style of murder. “Sure, we could cut bait once it’s become obvious. But polonium was always there for us, so we’ll always stand by polonium.” Then Putin goes off to a hotel for a tryst with his mistress: a comically large bottle of polonium wearing a revealing negligee and high heels.

These days, loyalty like that is rare in politically motivated murders. Hell, it’s rare anywhere.

There is No Way the New Scorsese/De Niro/Pacino/Pesci Movie Will Be Good

Martin Scorsese is reuniting with Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, and teaming for the first time with Al Pacino, for the upcoming film The Irishman. Netflix paid $105 million for the rights to it. Every Goodfellas, Casino, or Pacino (Cachino?) fan is rejoicing.

But should they be?

You’ll find no bigger fan of these legends than me, but I’m going to call it now: this movie is going to disappoint at best, and suck at worst.

The odds against this thing being good are a lot higher than you’d think. Sure, Scorsese can still dial up his fastball, but his latest efforts haven’t been nearly as good as the classics. Silence was probably good, but I wouldn’t know because seeing it felt like the life version of getting detention. Pesci hasn’t been on screen I believe since The Good Shepherd, the 2006 Matt Damon spy thriller that made the origin of the CIA look about as boring as it probably was. De Niro hasn’t been great in anything in a long time. Every role he’s in may as well be called, “Frowning Grandfather.”

And Al Pacino? It pains me to say this. He’s one of the finest actors to ever live. Michael Corleone is the single most iconic character ever put to film. But we’re only six short years removed from this:

That’s right, sports fans. It was only six years ago that the great Al Pacino ran around on film trying to fuck Lady Adam Sandler.

When the Golden State Warriors signed Kevin Durant, my buddy Lafayette Wright said it wouldn’t work out the way everyone expected necessarily. Why, you ask? Because as he put it, “Life isn’t a video game.” That’s what this feels like. It’s an old band getting back together to play their hits. Only they aren’t playing their hits really, it’s more like a cover of their old hits performed by guys who can’t do it like they used to.  Cinematic karaoke.

When this comes out out on Netflix, I’ll be the first to watch it. And I hope it’s awesome. But my hopes are not high. Until then, let’s all remember these amazing performers from their better times. Like when Al Pacino lusted after Adam Sandler in a fat suit and makeup, crooning about changing his name to Dunkacino.