Monday, January 29, 2007

Hello, Timebomb

My roommates and I were invited to a party downstairs in our apartment building. It was the first event held by one of the sororities on campus, and the invite list on facebook was somewhere in the 90s (meaning there would be roughly 150 people there at any one time). Filled from front to back with ladies of varying degrees of sobriety and attractiveness, we walked in, found two girls we knew, and proceeded to talk to them almost exclusively. After nimbly dodging a drunken freshman girl--who then fell in a lap of a couple heavily making out on the couch, leaving the gent none too pleased--my group retired towards a table that was once the playing field for flip cup.

Across the beer can mass grave was a group of five or six females, all of whom were intently looking in my direction. Playing it cool, I paid them no mind and continued to talk to my little entourage. From out of nowhere came a flash of light from a digital camera. Jarred, I shook my head and looked at the source: two girls, rather short, fairly unattractive. The one holding the camera giggles and says aloud, to no one in particular, "oh man, let's get more crowd shots!" That was followed by another picture of me exclusively, this time with the camera slightly ajar, giving it that wonderful Dutch Angle/"there's something wrong here" vibe. Meekly, she turns to her right and randomly holds down the trigger, flash goes off. She turns back to her friends. I do the same.

A few seconds later, I hear someone yell something from across the table. I look over and the photographer is asking me a question. "Are you Jewish?" she asks. With the help of a few bottles of beer, I stone faced a, "no, Roman Catholic" retort. She shoots me a confused look. I try and further my case by telling her that I'm even confirmed. I feel it isn't necessary to go the extra step and say that my confirmation name is Joseph. She says, "oh," prompting me to wave my hand in front of my face and say, "I know it looks it, but, no." I am Polish after all, and being Jewish became rather unfashionable around the same time the Antons moved to America. Dejected, li'l Annie Lebovitz turns to her friend, and they continue to point at me and debate my ethnicity, facial structure, and perceived religion for the next minute or so.

For the record, even if I was wearing a yarmulke, I would tell the girl I was Muslim. She was certainly not worth a conversion.

Have you ever wanted to beat someone so fucking badly in beer pong that it becomes almost as intense as a legitimate competitive sport? There was this one kid who kept hanging around the table, pointing out good shots, going "ooohhh" when there was a close miss, and laughing when a shot was way off. His commentary went unappreciated by all around. I figured he was just an asshole, smiled at him, and then when he turned his head I made faces at him, because I'm a coward and a backhanded son of a bitch. Oh well, the people on the table with me laughed.

The girl and I win. While we set up the next game, we see our next opponents. Lo and behold, it’s the douche himself. I turn to the girl I'm playing with and say, "I don't want to play anymore...but we can't fucking lose this game." She nods her head in agreement; so serious she refuses to say anything. That's quite the level of seriousness, sirs and ma'ams.

This guy was shooting with his right hand, but floated his left hand up as if he was shooting a basketball. He made his first shot, left the right hand leaning, got a big high five, and made an "oooohhhh it's on now!" sort of noise. I wanted to take the table leg and throw it, much like a javelin, through his giant round head.

Anyway, turns out he was the worst kind of asshole: he wasn't very good. In 10 cup, he hit maybe three, letting his partner do all the hard work (whilst she leaned with her elbow blatantly over the edge). So while that jackoff talked and talked and did dumb shit with his hands, my partner and I won, going undefeated, and beating a pure dick in the process. I hope he is now racked with self-doubt and cries himself to sleep.

Oh who am I kidding, he's probably wearing a hat that says "I'm #1" while he poses all alone in his bathroom with his shirt off, staring at himself in the mirror, trying his best to convince himself that his life is one worth living. Godspeed, sir.

There are absolutely no advantages to having the toilet paper be set for an overhand setting. The preferred method--hell, the only method--in the Anton house is the underhand orientation. This is the type that has the paper coming from the back, towards the wall dispenser, and dangles nicely straight to the ground. The overhand set up has the next sheet right on top of the roll, just waiting to be wrenched away, one 4"x4" slice of papery goodness at a time.

Has anyone ever had a problem with underhand? I can't believe it's possible. It's always ready to gently roll off, and you can usually control when the sheet ends. Overhand is a grab bag of lengths which could lead to the dreaded "one at a time" problem one experiences mostly at restaurants or places where you already don't feel comfortable going to the bathroom in.

This bothers me nearly as much as orange juice with pulp. This has baffled me since I was three. I was at my grandma's shore house, and my mom pours me a glass of what she swears is orange juice. "Incorrect," I counter, "this has stuff in it. Juice doesn't have stuff in it." She tries to placate me saying that it's just pieces of orange, and it comes with the sweet nectar of Tropicana oranges. I will hear nothing of the sort.

If this sort of willy-nilly processing happened with any other food, there would be hell to pay. Would you accept pieces of grape in your wine? How about apple bits in your apple juice? At least one foreign embassy would burn in effigy for the lax processing involved in creating that liquid product.

That is the most crucial part, really. It's a liquid and therefore shouldn't contain any solids. If I'm thirsty and suck down a glass of liquid, I don't want to deal with shit sticking to my teeth that I eventually have to sort of chew and then swallow. This is a mixture of mediums that simply should not be. Pulp should be barred from every household in America. We have the internet, a Polio vaccine, the Nintendo 64, but somehow we have pieces of fucking oranges in our orange juice. What's the point of modernity when shit like this continues to occur? I write on my 2004 laptop and drink oj from the dark ages. Fucking ridiculous.

Culling it all together: I'm not Jewish, I hate people who talk and have no game in beer pong, ineffectual toilet paper configurations, and orange juice that was drank when leparcy was still an issue. Yup. All in a night's work.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Why not?

The most curious disease of any writer is the dreaded Writer's Block. I have heard stories that it's just in your head, that it isn't true, or that you don't have any confidence in your work. On the flipside of this coin, I remember not being able to write. When NYU wanted 50 pages of a sample screenplay, I wrote 50 in two weeks and eventually a full-length 90 pages in about three weeks after that. Five weeks, ninety pages, no problem. Then I couldn't write another thing for months.

This blog was supposed to be the cure for that. Here I could say whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, in whatever form I wanted. But, suddenly, I have been snake bit. There is no topic I feel the urge--no, the need--to discuss. Nothing has really driven me to the computer, my hands already spasming to communicate so they can hit the keyboard running in mid thought. Instead, I've been simply content. Passion fuels my writing. From being miserable or angry or happy, there is always some feeling that needs to burst out. For whatever reason, this is the only suitable medium for my catharsis.

Earlier on in this trumped up journal I had a similar spell. "I guess I'm just really happy," I mused, while the actual lass was out-and-about with nary a phone number to reach her at in case of emergencies. Is this my trade off? I have nothing of real merit to complain about or really ponder in an entertaining way, but I'm incredibly happy, intrigued, and just in a great place personally. Sure, I could have more, but I most certainly could have less.

My roommate Zack is plugging away at a column submission for the Daily Free Press here at school. I honestly forgot they were even giving away slots this semester (like they do every semester). In the battle of mind and laptop, he tells me, "It's like I forgot how to write a column." I merely forgot what to write.

I'll finish this up with an air of uneasiness. There is no way I have outgrown the blog, but something has changed, and I don't know what that certain thing is. In due time the breaker will be turned back on, the plug we just thought never worked since it shorted while we used the blender AND the toaster will once again try and power both appliances, and I'll be telling more dumb stories. Until then, the focus remains on my radio show. We now pod cast. Awesome.

Oh, and if no one's seen it...here's what I did last semester in Production 1:

Thursday, January 04, 2007

So Misunderstood

Title comes from the brilliant Wilco song "Misunderstood" (creative song title, huh?) which sums up my latest winter break in Jersey. I don't want to go to Hooters and look at girls who only talk to you for tips and drink watered-down cheap beer. I'd rather be writing screenplays, watching the Twilight Zone and 24 on DVD, and playing far too much Winning Eleven 9 Soccer for PS2 (go LiverpoolFC!). For this, I’m a little bitch. Oh so misunderstood.

This post was originally going to be entitled, "four thousand holes in Blackburn, Lancashire." Problem is only 4% would get the reference and it was far too long to write out numerous times. But who cares about things that won’t ever happen? Let's get random (and be even more misunderstood).

The Best-Of Who cd, entitled My Generation, is adorned with a sticker that would hopefully sell you on buying the cd as you hold it in Best Buy. Some stickers say, "featuring the hit songs Wanksta and In Da Club!" or, "with BONUS Live DVD!" The Who cd comes emblazoned with, "As Heard on CSI." I'll wait while you react like I did: swallowing that vomit down your throat, back where it came from.

Are we all ok now?

Some items can sell themselves...or at least without the “help” of saying they did the theme song for some ass show (on CBS of all places). You know what sticker should be on that Who cd? "Why buy this? Because it's the fucking Who." This can be personalized for many other artists, namely The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, and more. You don't need a reason to buy those albums other than the obvious: they were made by (insert genius here). To be fair, I never would have started listening to Radiohead if not for the opening credits for Saved by the Bell.

Any time I go into a bathroom and the hot- and cold-water knobs say "Delta" it freaks me out. Is this the same company that can fly me to over 200 domestic locales for reasonable prices? I would assume not. If it is, shouldn't there be some sort of law that a company can't diversify that much? I will never own a Mitsubishi TV for that very reason. It's akin to having a Starbucks MP3 player, a Wonderbread calculator, or an ESPN toaster. It's simply not right.

During a recent trip to Barnes & Noble, I passed by a section of books under the heading "Religious Fiction." Isn't that a bit redundant?

Who the hell does Cedric the Entertainer entertain? What balls for a man to proudly proclaim something he's not. I'm Mike the Healer of the Lame! Look at me heal Panic! At the Disco fans! Has he EVER made a movie that leaves the viewer even chuckling? Let's go through a sample, thanks to the glory of imdb. Big Mamma's House: Nothing funny about obesity (or Martin Lawrence, who has been doing his best "Martin Lawrence" impression since 1995). Serving Sara: what? Barbershop 2: there weren’t any loose ends from the first one, were there? Johnson Family Vacation: let's take National Lampoon's Vacation...but make it BLACK! Man of the House: men can't deal with babies! Huzzah! The Honeymooners: let's Black that one up, too! It worked so well the first time! Then there's this absolute dogshit new flick, Codename: The Cleaner. He's not your usual undercover FBI whateverthefuck! He must have the best agent in town or gives phenomenal blowjobs. There is no other explanation. Wait…is there affirmative action in Hollywood? Would certainly explain Eddie Griffin….

I have a very contentious relationship with reality television shows. As a future writer for television, seeing so many writer-less shows succeed does not give me much hope in an already minute job market. There are some shows that I at least understand. The Real World (which is as real Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and Moses) is escapism fun, because NO ONE can be as stupid or whorish as a cast member. You can get the herp just by watching the orgy in the hot tub from the Vegas season (and I hear this new season is simply insane).

However, my parents' new favorite show, Top Chef, is completely ludicrous. How can you judge who should be tossed off? How do you root for someone? "Oh, their inedible green soufflé thing is definitely better than her Orange Julius-inspired rotisserie crab Rangoon. You heard the judge, the texture and flavor layering is CLEARLY not sustained through the entire meal!" What? Anyone can watch American Idol and figure out who puts on a better performance. How the christ do you judge food by looking at it? There aren't any samples coming out of your cable box. I have a great idea for a new reality radio show: Top Sculpter.

There is a billboard that nearly caused me to crash into a barrier on Route 17. In front of a stark white background is a bunch of people, but most notably featured among the bunch is Will Smith. I’ve liked Will since way before he captured our hearts with Big Willie Style (1997). My love and admiration has grown in this Willenium. What shocked me about this billboard is what reads in large, bold, black lettering across the bottom: WE ALL HAVE AIDS. Like hell I do! I'm sorry for this shocking revelation, French Prince (always thought he should stay away from that loose Jada Pinket), but WE ALL HAVE AIDS? Why someone hasn't sued Cedric for false advertising is beyond me, but this rampant slander is egregious. Then I did some research and saw the other part that was not mentioned on this particular billboard:

…IF ONE OF US DOES. Obviously not everyone in this ad campaign has AIDS. Look at Nelson Mandela. He's African for chrissakes!

Do you remember the ultimate cop-out during elementary school gym class? Instead of playing poison ball, Dr. Dodgeball, or matt ball, there was something else (and no, I don't count gymnastics, because that was a month-long shitfest). There was parachute day.
Let's go over all of the amazing activities we'd have a ball with: lift parachute and and put it down, make "popcorn" by shaking foam balls on top of said parachute, and lift it up and with the magic of air, pull it down really fast, sit down on the edge of the fabric, and make a ceiling of Kingdome-like sturdiness.

Why do I bring this up? Other than the obvious (pointing out that it sucked more dick than job-seeking Cedric), any time I type in AIM and start the im with a “(“ and don't close the parentheses before prematurely sending it, I have to type a solo “)” and send that out. I keep feeling like I'm merely sitting down on the edge of the parachute and trying to make it look like I didn't mess up. In fact, we're just having fun! And, like in gym class, no one is buying the sorry excuse to make up for something shitty. Not a-one.

And that's what separates us from the monkeys, folks.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Century Mark

There are so many little accomplishments in this world that go unnoticed. Little Jeffy doesn't get a prize when he wakes up one morning to a dry bed. Grandpa is not awarded a medal when he goes outside to fetch the morning paper without breaking his hip. Does anyone give accolades to the mom who tirelessly, day after day, has to be seen in a minivan? No, these people are not given the proper due for these achievements (both big and small). Thus, I submit to you the small milestone of writing the 100th post on Almost Enlightening (formerly Dribbling Drivel, a direct rip-off from Steve Martin's book Pure Drivel).

I have had a very firm stance against blogs, most specifically livejournals. The thought of the pomposity that one has to posses to believe that someone else would be interested in how their boring day-to-day life went sickened me. I don't care if you went to the mall, hit up Hot Topic, and then chain smoked all day. Who gives a shit?

It was with great trepidation that I created this thing. I tried my best to avoid having it fall into a self-serving discussion of my everyday life. While backlogging all of my previous posts, I realized that something like that is unavoidable. When you write what's on your mind it is directly affected by your every day life. During the time that I had trouble finding girls, I wrote about how they don't understand guys. Feeling out of place at home, I wrote about the disconnect between home and the place your stuff is while you’re away at college. There is a string of four or five posts with one word, lowercased titles when my two-year relationship ended.

I didn't spill about what she said or what I did; that is not important. I felt the emotions of the situation were important and relatable. I guess I just can't escape, well, myself. My only hope is that it reads as a sort of sharing effort and not a "and then I did THIS!" blow-by-blow account of my dull life. Probably against my best intentions, my life is on here, for all to see; all 487 days, all 128,175 words.

What constantly surprises me is how many people read this (let alone for why they do). I have a tracker on the site, so I know who comes to the site (through their ip address). I also get some fun little stats, like what kind of web browser you use, where you come from if you’re directly linked, if they found me on google, under what search terms, etc. So far it's been 24 countries all in total, although most have come from some wacky ass google searches. Some of my personal favorites:
sucked Allison Murphy (a Thai boy wanted to see my friend get sucked, apparently)
24-Hour Erotic Film Fest
Between a toilet and a hard place (the only direct title hit)
Bloodhouse pissing concert
My Vaginoplasty (which has since garnered 2 return hits from the same person, so I'm cornering that market)
men who tease too much or try and make girlfriends jealous

My biggest supporters in terms of linking have been the wonderful ladies at Chickball who really don't post enough. They're an absolute joy to read, so check'em out. Do it if only so I'm not as embarrassed by the fact that I give them around 1/3rd the hits they give me. I also give great thanks to those of you in the BU community. Thanks to the university for making a unique IP for almost every on-campus residence. This gives me the opportunity to see who reads based on where they live (55 Buswell, 10 Buick St. and their individual floors, brownstones on Bay State). Thank you Mom for reading, cause what other mother would?

The biggest debt of gratitude I owe to New Jersey, specifically my hometown of Park Ridge. I have not always been fair to you, but you really helped to shape me to be what I am now. For the number of readers I get, about half are from Boston, and the other half are from all over Jersey. Lord knows why you read, but keep it up. You puzzle and gratify me at the same time. Big thanks to Katy, Sasha, and Maggie for reading when this started. Another big thanks to Kels’s friends for being the first people I don’t know to look this over: you legitimized me.

So now I reach a crossroads. What the hell now? I always said I'd try and cull this into some sort of 100-200 page book to shop around. Maybe I could even self-publish. My biggest question is not unlike that of anyone else, really. It's a question of identity. I always had a problem with how the media handled Kanye West's "George Bush doesn't care about black people." Not for the racist undertones, or that they took it as an indictment rather than a bombastic exclamation point to get his message into the realm of headline news. What angered me the most was the title that they all gave him: Rapper. They couldn't call him "recording artist" like at any halftime show (regardless of genre), or "music artist," or simply "producer." He is stuck with "rapper," a subtle condemnation on his position to make such statements. Basically, they had "STUPID" running underneath the name "Kanye West."

The term "blogger" doesn't seem to be a fitting term. It doesn't hold the same disparaging tone of "rapper," but I'm not Matt Drudge, nor do I write for Deadspin. I'm not a columnist, because I am far too irregular in my posting pattern and have absolutely no structure. I am not a comedian because I don't go on stage and discuss these things, nor am I always very funny (intentionally or otherwise). I'm not a dramatist because I'd rather make people laugh. I’m not a storyteller, just when the situation calls for it. So what am I? Am I a writer? Storyteller? The only thing I know is that I'm long winded. Dear lord that's a lot of text up there. And what am I talking about? Oh well, time for 101 to make up for this self-serving nonsense....