Thursday, January 31, 2008

I'd be afraid of throwing out my back...

Three words: What the f?



Seriously? I don't know about ya'll, but there's no way in h-e-double hockey sticks that I could get anything done during the day were my ass being swiveled around by a paint mixer...

It's official. Americans are now so far and lazy that we'll believe *anything* that remotely involves motion qualifies as exercise.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Mmm...nutmeg...

Greetings from the Nutmeg State! Despite wind and weather in Chicago yesterday, I was able to sneak on an earlier flight out here to Connecticut and arrive at a reasonable hour*. Of course, then I had the day to hang out in far suburban Hartford. In fact, my hotel is across the parking lot from the mall. I did check it out yesterday, but it contained pretty much the exact same stores as every other mall in America. A&F, Forever 21, Zales (and Kays) Jewelers, Orange Julius, Build-a-Bear**, Macy's, Godiva Chocolates, etc. I really don't believe I saw any store here that looked unique or interesting. Not even an all-nutmeg store - where's the state pride, Connecticuters***?

Walking past the Sbarro, in fact, I realized that I had never seen a Sbarro anywhere *but* a mall. Or a food court of some sort (tollway oasis, airport, etc). Anyone? Did I miss something? Is the whole point that they don't exist as standalone restaurants?

Also, because I arrived early, my rental car got upgraded to a bright yellow Mustang. But I still don't really like these cars. They drive like a car twice their size and you can't see out the back windows. Plus, it has Sirius radio which makes it much harder than usual to listen to NPR. Blech.

* My original flight landed after midnight. Yerg...
** Granted, it wasn't as chic as the Build-a-Bear next to Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen...
*** Connecticans? Connecticaners? Connunists?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Urgh...Vegas

I'm in Vegas for a day today attending the "World of Concrete" trade show at the convention center. For me, Vegas is nothing all that interesting. I arrived last night really only in time to run down and watch the Belaggio fountain show. Because I'm staying so close to the Belaggio (across the street basically) for the first time, I didn't see a single dude handing out porn on the street! Honestly, I was kind of sad. If all the development on the strip pushes them to the margins, an entire segment of the Vegas economy is going to collapse, which is sad. Maybe the chamber of commerce will mark off a little "porn trading card refuge" where people can come and watch them in their native environment.

I flew in last night in on a plane full of overweight men* with beards, who were all probably going to be at the show today. And naturally, I heard the phrase "Vegas Baby!" about eleventy billion times on the plane. But I couldn't really focus on that because even though I was in the exit row, the seat I was in was more or less the least comfortable seat I've ever sat in. By the time we were making the approach into Macarran Airport, I was pretty confident that my tush was covered in ass-bruises. Mercifully, once I got off the plane, I felt fine. It was probably just a minor case of sciatica that went away on its own.

I'm staying at Ballys this time, which is one of the more "worn" hotels on the strip. It does have the largest room I've ever stayed in, and in terms of location it's pretty sweet. But as usual, my room is facing out the back, where I get a beautiful view of the ass-end of Vegas**. Maybe some day I'll get an actual view of the strip. Of course, those are probably more expensive, so maybe it doesn't really matter.

Oh well, I'm off to the show now. Time to feel svelte and short!

*What is it about concrete that attracts the male, the husky, and the hirsute of America? I know that there's a certain self-selection there, but still, it seems weird.
** Parking ramps - woot!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Today: Keychains, tomorrow: belt buckles trucker hats, and pashminas

Walking through the office this morning, I noticed that there was a set of keys sitting on top of a shelf, seemingly abandoned. Figuring they were just sitting there temporarily, I left them where they were*. Ordinarily, this wouldn't really be noteworthy - but one of the multiple key fobs on the keys caught my eye.

You see, as soon as I saw the keys, I knew they belonged to a woman. Yes, this was partially due to the fact that there were just as many key rings on it as there were keys. But the most telling sign was the giant VICTORIAS SECRET enscribed on the metal plate attached to the leather tag. I figured it was kinda of obvious that no man would carry around a Victorias Secret key ring; much less one that was 3" x 5".

I was still confused, though. Why would a woman want to haul a big Victorias Secret label on her person all the time? Doesn't it have to be kind of annoying to carry around all that extra weight? But then I got to thinking about all the celebri-sluts in Hollywood getting themselves another 5 minutes of fame by "forgetting" their panties as they get out of the car or somehow "neglecting" to wear a bra right before they hit the mega-powerful flash photographers on the red carpet. And maybe whoever owned those keys was showing off the Victorias Secret keychain as a subtle way of advertising "Hey all you attractive eligible bachelors! I wear underwear! I'm not a skank!".

That's when it hit me: I figured that maybe this is a great idea of Victorias Secret - after years of being successful designing lingerie that let women feel a little naughty, now they start coming out with innocuous-looking accessories to advertise to the world that you've got some personal decency.

Kind of ironic considering how much money they must have made via the sale of panty-line eliminating g-strings.

* Sure enough, they were gone when I walked by again a few minutes later.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

What, no McDreamy scrubs?

Hey medical-profession-Ladies!

Are you sad because the writer's strike has hobbled your regular viewing of Grey's Anatomy? Feeling Down because that one hot chick left the show/never worked her baby from Knocked Up into the plotline/still hasn't gotten together with that one hot guy?* Well now you can get yourself through the drought by swapping out those grubby, unflattering** plain ol' scrubs for a fresh new look from Katherine Heigel herself!

There are four different collections in her offering, named after four big cities where medicine is obviously terribly important and fashion-forward: London, Seattle, Los Angeles, and...Connecticut***. From the pictures, each has a different theme:
  • London: "I'm a professional doctor" or "I'm eleven years old!"
  • Seattle: "I'm a hippie!"
  • Connecticut: "I like my pants tight to show off all the time I'm spending at the gym!"
  • Los Angeles: "I may be a medical professional, but these gangsta-themed appliques on my scrubs prove I'm still from the block!"
I don't know, maybe I missed something, but isn't the whole point of scrubs that you don't care about them? I mean, if people start viewing scrubs as high-end fashion will they be less inclined to get blood and entrails over them? If not, then where's the line for men? When can the guys start buying scrubs with their favorite NFL team on them?

* If you haven't figured it out yet, I don't actually watch the show. Well, I did once, at a friend's party, and it was awful. But I got the gist of how things work.
** Women-targeted advertising speak for "makes you look like a heifer"
*** Admit it, Connecticut lost it's state status a long time ago. It's now essentially one big suburb of New York City now.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

*Why* am I not a doctor again?

While I'm certainly no scientologist* I am both fascinated and exasperated by the study of psychology. Sure, on the one hand they are able to provide insight into some of the more obscure aspects of human existance. For example, ladies, did you know that going on the pill apparently makes you less attractive**?

But just when I think psychologists have got things figured out with regard to research, they come out with some ridiculous study that anyone with half a brain would tell you is common sense. Case in point, Cornell did a study that showed that attractive waitresses get better tips than unattractive ones. Shocker...I know!

In other news, I went to the doctor yesterday to get some antibiotics for a recurrent sinus infection. I don't know how to explain it, but for some reason *every* time I catch a cold it ends up as a sinus infection. And usually they aren't bad ones - just some "post-nasal drip" and mild sinus pressure (not enough to call it a headache). I'm not stuffed up, I can breathe normally, and I don't cough up anything. Once I get the antibiotics, it usually takes a day or two and then one morning I'll wake up and blow a whole wad of [insert appropriately disgusting color descriptor here] snot out of my sinus and get that feeling of "Oh wow...*this* breathing is *so* much better!" and it's over. Simple, right?

Well, my doctor is a little old school. Despite my having gone through this with every cold I've had over the last 8-9 years, he still refuses to believe me when I tell him that I have a sinus infection and need antibiotics. Why? Just the minor detail that when you look down my throat and into my nose, there aren't any obvious symptoms. This time, he gave me Allegra-D to try and solve the problem via the placebo effect. I know this because he's given me Allegra-D for pretty much everything I've ever had. I think if I had cancer he'd start me off with a prescription for Allegra-D.

So now I have to wait two more days before I can call in and get the antibiotics. Of course, the Allegra D hasn't solved anything. Oh well, I've only had this sinus infection for 4 weeks. I supposed another two days won't kill me.

*WHY, WILL SMITH?!? WHYYYYYYYY!?!?!?!?!?!
** Granted, only for strippers in the study, but don't all women *want* to be strippers? Really? They don't? Then why are there so many ads for "striptease classes" and "stripper-pole aerobics" in my local community-ed circular? I rest my case.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Isn't this redundant?

Just when you think they have come out with a "Complete Idiots Guide" to everything, along comes the one for Intelligent Design.

Sigh...

In other news, I'm totally getting caught up on Oscar bait movies for this year. Saturday was No Country for Old Men* and Monday was There Will be Blood**. This weekend I'm seeing Atonement with a friend***, and I've already chalked up Juno and I have Once, Eastern Promises, and Michael Clayton ready to come from Netflix. All I have to do is nail down Diving Bell and the Butterfly and I think I'll be all ready for Oscar Party season! Woot!

Assuming, of course, there *is* an Oscars this year.

Sigh...

Oh, and I just saw that Hilary won NH. This is going to go on forever.

Sigh...

* Great!
** Essentially a 2.5 hour commercial for "Just give the Best Actor Oscar to Daniel Day-Lewis Already".
*** The GF already saw it

Friday, January 04, 2008

How hot is *your* ass? Now you can know!

Do you ever have one of those situations where you find yourself needing to use the facilities in a public place? It's like a shell game, really. You sit there facing the row of stalls* trying to figure out which one was least likely to be, shall we say, "freshly used". There are few things that make me uncomfortable in the world** - but one is sitting down on a pre-warmed toilet seat. I'm not quite sure whether the uncomfortness is due more to my feeling violated or feeling like I'm violating someone else, but either way it's all "ew".

I can't imagine I'm the only person to have this issue, which is why I'm shocked that it took so long for someone to invent heat-sensitive toilet seats, which change color when they are warmed by someone's nether-regions. Talk about problem solving!

Although, I'm a little weirded out by the copy that describes the "alternative" benefits of such technology:


Conversely, if one is looking for intimate contact with an anonymous stranger without the associated awkwardness of verbal discourse, one could seek out the warm toilet seat.


Ew. I think I have something new to be uncomfortable about...

* Sure, us dudes most often just get to pick a urinal, but let's stay focused on the real issue.
** Others include people sleeping on mass transit, combs on the floor, and seeing dogs poop in public.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Don't bother with dating, just *buy* your woman!

After being forced to watch all the crappy commercials over the holidays, I found myself getting a little irritated for some reason. Apparently, it has something to do with my not being given one of these diamond pendants this year.

What is it with *every* single diamond commercial this winter selling us the *exact* same thing? I always thought that when you get your girlfriend something, the whole point was to get something original and unique? The point of which was to get them to draw the conclusion that you think they are original and unique. Which gets them to make out with you, right?

So what message does it send when you get your girlfriend the exactly same thing that everyone is selling? "Hey baby, I love you because you're just like every other chick"? Yeah, *that's* the message I want to send... [insert eye roll here]

Thinking about this whole topic got me pondering about just how holiday advertising (and that for jewelry in particular) seems to be falling off the edge of a cliff towards a broad statements that all women are prostitutes who will only stay with you if you buy them exorbitant gifts for Xmas. There's actually a really interesting blog article out there on this topic which captures my feelings on this pretty well; so go read that, interpret those thoughts as my own, and you'll pretty much get my opinion. Bonus: it doesn't take me nearly as long to write!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

HEY IOWANS!

Are *you* still an undecided voter? Tired of having to *read* and *learn* all the time about all the different candidates positions? Are you all nervous and sweaty because your caucus is tonight and you're still "undecided"? Well worry no longer because once again - THE INTERNET HAS THE ANSWER!

Some research firm has created this website (based in the Netherlands, I think) where you answer 32 positional questions about your feelings on certain important issues and the site spits out your position on a two-axis graph relative to those of the main democratic and republican candidates and tells you which you are closest to, based on an analysis of the positions they proclaim on their websites, books/articles they've written, transcripts of debates, voting records in Congress, etc. It practically votes for you!

Now, obviously all you professional politicos out there* are probably going to go into all sorts of fits about "how they code data" and "accuracy" and "truthiness" - but my results put me smack dab next to my preferred candidate of choice, so I can only assume they are 100% accurate. It's like the internet knows me so well...

* Yes, I'm lookin' at you Spice and J.Bro