Saturday, January 30, 2016

Tiny Bits of Nonsense: January 2016

Here is the January 2016 edition of "Tiny Bits of Nonsense," featuring 10 of my tweets for the month: Other bits of nonsense:
December 2015
New Year's Edition

November 2015
October 2015
Halloween Edition

September 2015
August 2015
July 2015

June 2015

May 2015
"Back to the Future" Edition
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
Valentine's Day Edition
January 2015
December 2014
Holiday Season Edition
November 2014
Thanksgiving Edition
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014

April 2014
March 2014

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

You Can Trust Me

I've listed my apartment on Craigslist. I'm searching for a new tenant so I can break my lease and move elsewhere in the city, and several friends recommended that I post an ad on the site.

So I did. I spent hours writing, rewriting, and refining the text. This was my Sunday afternoon a few weeks back: carefully crafting a concise but well-constructed classified ad for a studio apartment in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan. I wanted my post to stand out in a crowded field. I wanted a Craigslist user to say, "Yes, those other apartments have a doorman, elevator and laundry room, but this one -- this one inspired such beautiful prose. I must view it at once."

And yet...no one has viewed it to date. I've only received one inquiry, from a 30-something woman who works nearby and would like to cut down on her commute. I offered to show her the apartment on a Wednesday at 6 p.m., and she agreed.

I eagerly awaited our meeting. Who knows when the next response to my Craigslist ad would come? I needed -- and the apartment needed -- to make a good first impression. I needed her to move in so I could move on and move out.

I made every effort to make it happen. I vacuumed the apartment. I swept the floors. I cleaned the window blinds. I asked the cockroaches in the hallways to hide until after the viewing. I kindly requested all dogs in the building to refrain from urinating in the stairwell. (I've never seen this myself, but I know for a fact that it's an issue. I walk down the steps and carefully avoid colored spots, as if I'm navigating a minefield or a New York City sidewalk in the middle of winter.)

An hour before the appointment, I sent an email to confirm she was still interested. She was. Fantastic. She asked for a meeting point. I provided the address to my building, and suggested she buzz my apartment so I can let her up.

Twenty minutes later, my inbox pinged with a new message. She was cancelling. A friend of hers lives in the building, she said. She saw the friend's apartment and didn't like it, she said.

Suddenly, I was back to square one. Any hope I had of her signing a lease, and relieving me of the responsibility of finding a new tenant, was dashed. My plan had fallen apart more quickly than a cockroach stuck on a sticky trap in the basement of my building.

This is speculation on my part, but I believe she doesn't have a friend who lives in my building. I believe she made up the story. My best guess, after reviewing our email exchange: She was expecting to connect with a real estate broker, and instead connected with me: a stranger, inviting her to check out an apartment, at night.

I don't know why she would have had cause for concern. I'm a nice guy. Ladies can trust me. In fact, that's how I ended my ad: "I'm a nice guy. Ladies, you can trust me."

I was reminded of an experience I had last year riding a bus after midnight with a woman in her mid-20s. We both exited the bus at the same stop, and though we were headed in the same direction, she chose to cross the street first, keeping a safe distance from me. Strange, I thought. Why did she do that? That seemed excessively cautious, even if it was late. I then realized I was wearing a hoodie. With the hood on. In 60-degree weather. OK, I can see why a person might interpret that as being suspicious and disconcerting. But in my defense, the hood feels so comfortable on my head, even in mild temperatures.

The point is, women have nothing to fear when they're around me. My track record bears that out. I'm not some sort of hoodie monster who captures women with a sticky trap in the basement of my building, I can assure you.

I really am a nice guy. I can even prove it by spending hours with any female writing, rewriting and refining an application for my apartment until it's perfect.

Monday, January 4, 2016

The 2016 Golden Globes Opening Monologue You Won't See

I'm excited that award season is under way. Too excited, really. I'm not a nominee. I'm not a guest. And, most notably, I'm not a host.

Longtime readers of this blog know that it's been my pseudo-dream to emcee an award show. I've said it in jest, though I was still motivated to write my own opening monologue for the 2014 and 2015 Golden Globe Awards (which you can read here and here.)

It's become an annual tradition, one that I'm, yes, excited to renew here, with the 2016 Golden Globes just days away. It's a fun exercise, to sharpen my comedic skills, express my creativity, and put my knowledge of pop culture to good use. And the best part: I can tell jokes while wearing flannel pants and a Saved by the Bell T-shirt in my apartment. Sure beats walking a red carpet in a tuxedo.

I humbly submit, for your consideration, an opening monologue for this Sunday's ceremony. Introducing your host for the evening, me....

"Hello, and welcome to the 73rd Annual Golden Globe Awards, the only show you'll watch live on broadcast television until the Oscars. It's an honor to be hosting the telecast, and I hope I can entertain you tonight. But just in case I don't, I have recorded 12 more opening monologues. You can stream them all on Netflix beginning at 3 a.m. Eastern time tomorrow morning.

"It was a record-breaking year for Hollywood in 2015, highlighted by the new Star Wars movie. What a fantastic film. I loved it. Wonderful performances all around. Adam Driver was terrific as the villain Kylo Ren. Though I have to admit, when I first heard that a Girls cast member is featured in Star Wars, I assumed it would be a naked Lena Dunham.

"J.J. Abrams proved once again that he has the ability to breathe new life into a beloved franchise. He did it with Star Trek, he did it with Star Wars, he did it with Alvin and the Chipmunks. Little-known fact: he had a hand in writing the screenplay for Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip. He didn't receive credit, but he is responsible for the biggest plot twist in the film: Dave killed by his own son, Alvin. Dave yelled Alvin's name one too many times. Alvin just snapped.

"Legendary actors were all over the big screen in 2015: Harrison Ford as Han Solo in Star Wars, Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa in Creed, Arnold Schwarzenegger as the Terminator in Terminator Genisys. I'm just glad they were able to capitalize on the momentum of The Expendables 3 and find new and original roles for themselves.

"Another star of The Expendables 3, Ronda Rousey, had a difficult year. Not because she lost her first UFC fight, but because she appeared in the Entourage movie.

"There are so many great films nominated for a Golden Globe tonight. The Martian is a nominee for best comedy. As it should be. I can't help but laugh out loud every time I think about an astronaut being abandoned by his crew and forced to grow potatoes using his own feces on a planet 250 million miles away.

"For the record, Hollywood has sent Matt Damon, George Clooney, and Matthew McConaughey to outer space in the last three years. So let that be a lesson to the kids watching at home who dream of becoming an astronaut when they grow up: Forget it. You're not good-looking enough. I'm sorry.

"The Danish Girl star Eddie Redmayne is nominated. I highly recommend the film if you haven't seen it. It's the most gripping biopic of Little Debbie I've seen to date.

"Playing a transgender woman was the latest in a series of challenging roles for Redmayne, after portraying Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything and having to act in Jupiter Ascending. I have to admit, I didn't watch Jupiter Ascending. I find movies by the Wachowskis to be too confusing. Speed Racer went completely over my head.

"On TV, we said goodbye to Mad Men after seven seasons. The drama forever changed the way we binge-smoke and cheat on our wives.

"In the finale, Don Draper created the famous 'I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke' commercial. But as we saw in the post-credits scene, his life went into a downward spiral in the '80s after his ad campaign for New Coke was a massive failure.

"Let's hand out some awards. Our first presenter is a successful talk show host, author and comedian. Please welcome to the stage Steve Harvey!

(Applause)

"Okay, folks. I have to apologize. Steve Harvey is not our first presenter. It's Bryan Cranston. It is my mistake."

Friday, January 1, 2016

Tiny Bits of Nonsense: December 2015

Here is the December 2015 edition of "Tiny Bits of Nonsense," featuring 10 of my tweets for the month:
Other bits of nonsense:
New Year's Edition

November 2015
October 2015
Halloween Edition

September 2015
August 2015
July 2015

June 2015

May 2015
"Back to the Future" Edition
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
Valentine's Day Edition
January 2015
December 2014
Holiday Season Edition
November 2014
Thanksgiving Edition
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014

April 2014
March 2014