Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thirsty Thursday

1. I don't work at Loews. Just in case we happen to be at the same one, during the same time. And you mistake my royal blue shirt as a red, mesh uniform vest.

 How hilarious that one youg woman, came up to me while I was sitting at the little desk in front of the appliance customer service counter. Let me make myself clear: I was not sitting behind the desk, I was sitting at one of the two chairs in front of the desk, designed for customers to sit and browse through the thickly binded catalog (in unabridged dictionary fashion). I was sitting there with my purse and car keys scattered precariously on the table, flipping through appliances while the salesman followed my mother to get a reference number of a refrigerator we were looking at. And eventually purchased.

During that brief moment a young (like my age or younger) woman accompanied by her mother approached me like we were mid conversation. It was possibly the equivalent of being verbally jumped sans cables. Or maybe she had cables.

She started hurriedly explaining the type of refrigerator they were looking for and wondered if we had anything like that. And since I had spent a half hour prior familiarizing myself with the appliances in stock, I showed them a few stainless steel units with french doors and informed them that every refrigerator is 10 % off including the ones already at a clearance price.

And the best part was when they asked if I worked on commission and I told them no, but someone that works here does. And then I walked away, while their jaws fought gravity and I heard the mom say something to the effect of, "See, I saw her car keys on the table and her purse." And the daughter replied, "I thought she was just chillin".

2. It was so hot today, the albinos were sweating as much as those wrestlers that wear parkas while on the cardio machines the gym. See, Hank, I was creative enough to not use any racial comparisons. Which, by the way, something referred to as a "racial simile" does not sound as crass or off-putting as a "racial slur". Also, a usable term and possibly inappropriate, but manages to warm my heart, racial slurpee.

3. Why is it that the floors of Famous Daves are always sticky? What are the workers doing in there when they open the restaurant? I almost don't want to think about it because I love their sides of macaroni and cheese so much (baked with jalapeno and corn mixed in) and their sweet and zesty sauce. Although, if the workers are getting sweet and zesty in there when the doors are closed and my back is turned, I do not want to know. Especially since 90% of the employees are men. And there are deer heads hanging on the walls.

There is a time and a place for all things sexy, creepy, and  furry handcuffs but surrounded by deer heads and hunting paraphernalia around bbq sauces called"the Devil' Spit", is not...well, actually now that I think about it, this sounds a lot like a weird porno one of your close friends would be in without telling you. So your husband watches her flick, finds out she's bucking the taxidermy deer with her pseudo-ram horns, and doesn't say anything because then you will know his weird fetish porn habits. 

Only, now he's watched your friend do weird things on weird things and all he can do is avoid eye contact with said friend every time he sees her! or him. This is obviously me being objective here. I don't even have a husband. In this country.

4. Check out the Google sign today! It is designed like a guitar to celebrate Les Paul's birthday! And the best part is that you can strum the google sign and it makes music. So if you can't afford an expensive, but beautiful, Les Paul guitar, this might be the next (well, next, next, next next, next) best thing.

5. I am so tired, I need a pick-me-up. I think I'll just drive around to antique stores, consignment shops, estate sales, and garage sales to see if anyone is selling their emmy. Then I will purchase it with some food stamps/tramp stamps and hang it on my shelf of other people's emmy's, grammys, tonys, nobel peace prizes, purple hearts, oscars, and hot dog eating competition trophies, and I will stare at all my accomplishments until I pass out into a deep slumber.

Then I will wake up from the thunderstorm, make myself a snack, and flip through the channels for shows like, "The Devil Wears Nada", " The Girls first Lesbian Girlfriend" (as if there is any other kind of girlfriend for a girl) and, "Pawn Stars" (which is actually just about a family owned pawn shop on the History Channel, but still very enjoyable to watch. God I love that Chumlee! Especially during the Christmas episode where he dresses up as an elf--he's just the cutest, chubby, unmotivated idiot --I want to adopt him for my stuffed animal collection).

What I love about--well, my motivation for telling you all this: Some of you out there in the matrix of the web, don't know if I am kidding or not. And who am I to spoil it for you?

Until next time...

Over and Out:kshh
-Michelle J

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Scotch and Soda? It's Tuesday Somewhere...

1. After church this past Sunday, I decided to read some brochures while I waited for my mom to finish her social rounds. So there I was, leaning against a table in the foyer, reading my newly found brochures, very unabashed. Very pubic public:

What do you expect, this is me here. I have no shame flipping through these during the after church mass exodus/ fellowship (it's like a battleship but  with a smaller dingy) B6,F4,D8.
Okay, I thought it was funny.


2. I have recently fallen in love (of course the imagery that evokes is a little girl falling into a well and then dying because nobody ever finds her and she downs in rat urine) Anyway, it's already Tuesday, and I have fallen in a big ditch of love, and I can't get up. (insert dying bug moves)

First the sad news, and inevitable tangent that will prolong the revealing of my semi-new found love:

The clothing store, Metro Park, has closed! They went bankrupt. Probably because they sell expensive clothes in a very jewish area. I am of course very sad because they were a portal to my favorite designer jeans like Diesel and Rock and Republic (Since I don't have those stores near me), without the Nordstroms incredulous up-sale on every pair (which they buy wholesale for cheap. let's be honest)

The only good thing that came out of this bankruptcy was the closing sale! Which yesterday was at 90% off....of the lowest marked price! Not even from the original price. They didn't  have many girls clothing left but they had a lot of nice men's clothing. So..duntatuntada....my boyfriend has a new wardrobe. ahahahhahahahahaha. I'm not joking. 
Either, I'm the worlds best girlfriend, or I have a serious buying-things-for-people-problem ( I'm going to go with the latter).

The best buys of the day were a few Scotch and Soda shirts in his size for ten dollars each! Madness. they are normally sold for $100 each. Even though, there was a nice oxford shirt I literally bought for $2, the Scotch and Soda finds were the the clear winners.

Why does this little juggernaut, Scotch and Soda, have so much of a hold over me?
Because I've been obsessed with the label, that's why! Because Scotch and Soda Amsterdam Couture is what I would call, the European equivalent of J-Crew, but way classier. These clothes are beautifully made to have that hand crafted look: From the stitching, to the tags to the small details in each item of clothing that separates it from anything else in it's equivocal style.

The label has a "tailored for perfect fit" motto, which is perhaps why every shirt size runs smaller than normal. So If you are a tall man, and normally wear a large, you would literally move up one or most likely two sizes (to an xl or a xxl). They have some skinny men over there in the Netherlands.

Within the past two years, Scotch and Soda started a woman's line called "Maison Scotch La femme Selon Marie". The label was originally started as just a men's company in the 80's then it was renovated after three new owners appeared in 2001. Though the women's line has become very successful, and there are over 30 Scotch and Soda retail locations world wide, there are fewer stores that carry both men and women's clothing. They also have boys and girls lines.


This is one of the Scotch and Soda shirts I bought for the Bf.Can you see the dark blue pocket square? It came with a different shirt but I stuffed it in this one like it was the abyss between a turkey's legs. Also, like my bra.



3 Tonight, I had dinner with the Brooklyn-born writer, Karen Riley. Something about her accent was charming as was her general zest for writing her passions. And her general zest for chicken parm. 

Riley has published four books altogether. Her first three books are about the New Jersey Pine Barrens that are rather astounding. Her five years of research really shows that she has compiled one of the most accurate accounts of the enormous land's history. If you are familiar with New Jersey, you have heard of the Pine Barrens, even if you do not know much about them. It is supposed to be the area that the Jersey Devil dwells. Gotta love that folklore.

If your initial assumption is that the Pine Barrens are a group of women that can't have children because they have repeatedly acted on their weird fetish for pine trees, you are probably right.

But for all intensive purposes, and legal reasons, I am obligated to suggest that The Pine Barrens are actually: 1.1 or so  million acres of land that stretch across 7counties and 52 municipalities in New Jersey. It makes up 22% of the state. This is a historical area heavy laden with 17 trillion gallons of pure water underneath, bog iron, acidic land for cranberries and blueberries to flourish. There are still ghost towns left as remnants of early colonists: glassblowers, saw mills, paper mills, cranberry bogs, grape juice factories etc.

It was a place where the dentist, Dr. Thomas Welch lived and became the first person to pasteurise grape juice (Welches grape juice anyone?).
John. L. Mason patented his airtight jar and  set up a manufacturing plant in Vinelands, NJ (Part of the Pine Barrens). It is seeping with little historical nuggets.

Riley's third book was published through the national distributor, Arcadia Publishing. Arcadia produces those series of books based of certain towns throughout the United States. You might have seen one in your local Barnes and Noble. It might say something akin to, "Images of America: Insert Your Town Here". It's the one with the Sepia colored cover featuring some very old looking photograph.Generally a photograph of the town, taken a century or so prior.

Throughout the dinner, Riley freely proffered some very useful advice about publishing, stringing for newspapers, general writing groups to join, and how to avoid being smacked by a nun from the christian brothers school teaching method. It seems that both Sister Acts and "Flying Nuns" with Sally Fields, did not portray nuns accurately. It was more of a  genre Chuck Norris/ Jackie Chan wearing a habbit kind of movie that never got made. Basically, she explained everything she learned the hard way. I also found out how much the publishing industry is changing for the worse (worse for the authors). 

Now many publishers, including the "Big Five" are doing little marketing on each author's book. I suppose with globalization and now the very easy-to-use social media outlets, marketing falls largely on the author. What the what!?

For many of the regional, and even national publishers, the author is now given a minimum of books he/she has to buy in advance and out of pocket. This is thousands of dollars out of the author's pocket because publishers are wary of printing books in a rapidly digital age.

If I already hated Kindle, Nook , iPad( well just the books for it), and  e-books before, I really hate them now with the fire of ten burning genitals! Because of the growth in digital books, the sales in bookstores has decreased. There's a reason why your local Borders has gone out of business. This is something I have feared for three years now, when I first wrote an article about the Amazon Kindle in my college newspaper.

Even though it seems that Barnes and Noble has maintained equilibrium,and maybe a few mom and pop bookstores, many publishers are still too frightened to take any risks. And thus,a vaguely familiar, though less dystopian (until China takes over), Fahrenheit 451 syndrome is taking a shape (most likely a rhombus.Triangles are a little too slutty). If only there were a way to give this technology some type of std or genital wart, then people would flee to the mountains where they buried their books.

It was a very pleasant evening, despite finding out the nuns were actually responsible for beating Rodney King and consequently, the original inventors of pinatas and I was very grateful that Riley spent so much time (four hours) discussing all things writing and sweating over some  pasta fagioli soup and our respective chicken dishes ( make no mistake, I Swat as well just not visibly). She also gave me a signed copy of her third book!

You can purchase any of Karen Riley's books @ http://karenfriley.net/


4. New Show idea. Possibly cartoon, possibly documentary:Ninja Terdles.
Tag line: "It's about time your poop fought back."

So  whether turtle or terdle these ninjas will still dwell underneath the sewers! And they will probably still eat an obese amount of pizza. So which Ninja Terdle are you?

"Kowabunga, Dude!"

Over and Out:kshh
-Michelle J


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

What the Tuesday, It's Wednesday?

My life is a mess, kiddies.

I just realized that I only have twenty-nine days to feign brilliance and submit to a writing program that starts this fall. Twenty-nine days of construction! And I need to collaborate with my writing partner, if I still have one, and that stuff is way harder than writing by myself. She's also in a completely different city/state,if you were wondering why that would be harder than writing solo.
Maybe (most likely) nothing will come of this, but there is something to be said and done for women in comedy:





Okay, maybe that's the problem: There is not much be said about female comedians, and there are a lot of unknown, brilliant women writers: Kay Cannon, Paula Pell, The girl that co-wrote Bridesmaids with Kristin Wiig etc. Tina Fey constantly speaks out (in her book) about her theory for women comedians/actors: She thinks they only have jobs so long as men( specifically network/movie executives) are willing to sleep with them.


But it is probably true in most cases. How many men, can honestly say that they have women comedians they love/look up too(not because these men are midgets), and have sincere respect for them (looks aside)? With the exception of my boyfriend, not many.

When I think about it,  I am a woman (usually), and I only really have one female stand-up (apparently,some of them kneel) comedian that I truly love: Whitney Cummings. Well, Wanda Sykes too.

Tangent:
I jsut found out thatI'm lexdicsec Today, I found out that Whitney Cummings is getting her own sit-com on NBC this fall! The show is called, Whitney. It's named after her! I think the fact that it is loosely based off her comedy/life is wonderful. It may follow the same success as other sitcoms based on the comic's life with his/her name in the show's title: Seinfeld, Everybody Loves Raymond, Ellen, George Lopez , Jerry Springer etc.

Whitney show preview:




A clip from her stand-up, Money Shots:


End Tangent

The movie Bridesmaids was brilliant if you have not seen it, Hank! It's not a chic-flic; It's a full-fledged comedy! It was co-written by Kristin Wiig, from snl, who also starred in the movie along with Maya Rudolph, former snl cast member. The jokes were brilliant, and do not just cater to women.
That's what is wonderful about  the snl comedians( and many up-coming women writers in general), they are telling jokes that appeal to everyone, especially, the hard-to-please, men.

As Tina Fey once loosely said( she was wearing yoga pants),"Women [Specifically Amy Poehler] writers/comics are not trying to be cute." (Again, that was a loose paraphrase that I decided to put in quotations for more authority)
They're telling the fart/ sex/ fart during sex jokes just like everyone else.

 I haven't seen The Hangover 2 yet, but I already have a feeling Bridesmaids is a funnier movie. And Hangover 2 already broke a gazillion records for the box-office records last weekend. Men are funny but sometimes women are funnier and not all men find that acceptable.

Bridesmaids Movie Trailor 1:



Bridesmaids Movie Trailor 2:



Sometimes I fantasize about being a pioneer for women in comedy, and then I think about the show , Little House on the Prairie, and that shit is depressing.

Still, here's a little something I threw together (what this old thing?) I wrote as a sort of PSA for women in comedy, so that one day it will just be, comedy (just like one day, there will be no more distinction between white and black people, there will only be tan people).

This PSA is a dialogue between me and a female comedian. Maybe Kristin Wiig, maybe Whitney Cummings, maybe Tina Fey, maybe a former Real-House Wives reality star from the battered women's shelter:


Me: Hi, I'm Michelle J, I am representing, women, writers, jokes, Mexicans, and yeast infections.

FC(Female Comedian): Hi I am ----- ----- ,actor, comedian, woman. Some people wear crosses around their necks as a way to show reverence for their religious foundation. I carry this tampon around my neck to remind me where my roots are. And to remind myself that no matter how much back hair I grow, I still have a vagina.

Me: And I carry this brick around with me to remind me of my ethnic heritage. Also, this red mustache.
(beat)

------ ------ is not just a woman, she's not just an actor, she's also a writer, colleague, friend, mother, and sex doll.

FC: (nodding) Wait, what?

Me: I'm kidding. You're hardly a sex doll; you never look surprised.

FC:You've probably heard of many organizations that cater solely to women.

Me: Like Women on Women

FC:(shakes her head) You mean Women for Women (beat)

We are not from any particular women's organization, but we are trying to gain support for women in comedy.(beat)

we are here to tell you that women are warriors.

Me: Like Atilla the Hun. He was actually a woman.

FC: (confused) You know he raped and pillaged half of Eastern Europe, right?

Me: Some women have more needs than others.

 (pause)

If you look throughout history, there were many powerful women.

FC: Oprah

Me: Even before Oprah

FC: Oprah's mom

Me: Even before that

FC: Joan of Arc

Me: She got burned. and there's nothing powerful about a Yankee Candle.


I already received two questions about this, one of them from Hank. Yes, I made this (badly). I would've cited the source otherwise. Now can I get a capiche salad ova heeaa? ok, that was bad. cuz, capiche is a play on a caprese insalata...yeah, not so much.



(Long Pause)

Hitler. Hitler was actually a woman.

FC: (exasperated) What?

Me: Think about a lot of those East German women that competed at the Olympics back in the day. Hitler was just a woman on mild steroids.

FC: That would explain the awkward stash. Who just grows a patch under his nose? (beat) Any women comedians before Oprah's time?

Me: Joan Rivers.
(beat)
And Helen Keller.She was the female Will Ferrell. They both think yelling is hilarious.

End PSA


Welp, that's it for right now, folks.

I hope you support women, much like the bra your man really should be wearing would support him. We gotta stick together akin to a honey-filled lesbian porno. Even you, Hank.

Over and Out:kshh
-Michelle J