Tuesday, July 25, 2006

This Just In: Dan's Insanity to Reach a Wider Audience

Starting this week, my observations of the inane and inaner will be featured on The Dude's Life (www.thedudeslife.com). I have been wanting to get my blogs out to a larger audience for awhile now, so I'm thrilled to have this opportunity. I will continue to blog here as well, though I will likely be writing completely different content for TDL.

My first blog was posted last night, which was basically an introduction (some may say warning) to who I am and what readers can expect from my complete and total randomocity. So check it out...or else*.

Until next time...

*It's just an empty threat. I'm too pacifist and stuff.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Why Hermits Have the Right Idea + More Tom Jones Funnery

Why Hermits Have the Right Idea

Last night, I intended to conk out on the couch around 11:30. I say "intended", since I proceeded to toss and turn for the next two hours as my mind raced a thousand miles a minute. Such a sleepless night is actually quite routine for me, as my restless thought pattern typically goes something like this:

"I really don't want to go to work tomorrow...I wonder what I'll have for breakfast tomorrow...I hope this Mid-East crisis is resolved...maybe waffles...whatever happened to Mark Linn-Baker...nah, maybe I'll have a bagel instead...I REALLY don't want to go to work tomorrow...why didn't I fold that hand the other night...crap, I don't think I even have any more bagels...Voltron was a great cartoon..."

Yeah, it's 120 minutes of that.

So last night, I had started to reach the apex of the two hour threshold of suck when I finally started dozing off around 1:30-ish. Almost as if on cue, my quite alcoholic neighbors decided at that very moment to engage in some drunken shouting. Considering my walls have the thickness of a piece of toilet paper (not the la-dee-dah 2-ply stuff either), I immediately awoke from my slumber, which had lasted a grand total of two minutes. Quickly deciding that I wasn't in the mood to be kept awake by inebriated tomfoolery, I immediately trudged into my bedroom and plopped on the bed in the hopes of getting at least a few hours of uninterrupted sleep.

I did indeed get some uninterrupted sleep...a whole 20 minutes worth. I'm guessing my one neighbor came down with a case of the blues. I can safely make this assertion, especially since said jackass proceeded to drunkenly play the guitar in the parking lot, which just happens to be right outside my bedroom window. So once again, I immediately picked up my bedtime necessities and made my way back to the couch.

I know you're probably asking, "Why didn't you just tell him to stop?" The answer is quite simple: I'm a wuss.

I recurled myself up on the couch, hoping that Eric Clapton out there would strum himself to sleep in the middle of the sidewalk (though in my angered state, I thought that the middle of the street wouldn't have been such a bad idea either). Once again, I began to shut my eyes in the hopes of them not opening again until the alarm went off (though the snooze button would be on call). As soon as I started entering some bodily state closely resembling sleep, the next-door chicanery worked its way back inside. Only this time, I heard laughing. Very loud, obnoxious, drunken laughing. While the pacifist in me was just oh-so-happy to hear that they kissed and made up, the slightly delusional insomniac in me began envisioning some creative uses for a baseball bat.

I honestly can't tell you for sure if I woke up this morning in my bed or on my couch. Three hours of sleep has a tendency to distort memory like that.

More Tom Jones Funnery

A couple of weeks ago, I posted the now-infamous "Smart People Eat Hear" sign that I saw outside of Tom Jones Restaurant. When a few friends insisted that it must have been an intentional (albeit bad) joke, I scoffed...mainly since I hold onto the hope that some people are just that stupid. Why? Because that's 90% of my blog material right there.

However, after driving by this week's new sign, even I have the question the legitimacy of their idiocy. Because if this sign is not some horrible attempt at humor, I am so beyond frightened for the world's future that I may invest in some locust repellant.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have an apocalypse to prepare for.

Until next time...

Friday, July 14, 2006

Good Answer!

This past week, I set a personal record of going to Atlantic City three times in one week. I'd rather not talk about last Monday's excursion, because my fragile ego doesn't want to draw attention to the whomping I got in a post-midnight poker tournament. I would talk about Saturday's uber-frigged-up trip, but Mike has that one pretty well-covered (http://soupnyc807.blogspot.com -- If you wish to distance yourself from me after reading Mike's recap, I'll understand). Instead, I'll focus on my third journey to AC this past Monday, mainly because it doesn't involve driving home a loser at 7:00 AM or inducing visuals of Bill Kirchenbauer and Bronson Pinchot engaging in acts of a sexual nature.

If you wish to distance yourself from me after reading that last sentence, I'll understand.

Back to the recap...

After spending the night in Wildwood with my buddy Randy and his girlfriend, Karen, we ventured to AC (again). My Dad, who was on vacation, met us up there as well. My Dad and I had talked all week about doing a fifty dollar poker tounament at Showboat, so we ultimately decided to go ahead and do it, despite the fact I was pretty pokered out. Before I get to the results of said tournament, let's do a little Tale of the Tape, shall we?

Age: 26
Poker Experience: A year-and-a-half
Number of Final Table Appearances: 10
Number of Tournament Wins: 2

Age: 50
Poker Experience: His son teaching him how to play two days before
Number of Final Table Appearances: n/a
Number of Tournament Wins: n/a

Tournament Results
Number of Entrants: 69 (heh, heh, heh)
Place Dan Came In: 60th
Place Dad Came In: 8th

There's no typo. To put it mildly, the student schooled the teacher. He walked away with $140. I tried to subtly remind him of a deal we had made prior to the tournament, where all winnings would be split down the middle. I guess subtlety is not my strong suit, as my meek cry for unearned money yielded a quick change of subject. Though in all fairness, he did cover my dinner, so I have zero room to complain.

After said dinner in Showboat's buffet, we all gambled a bit more until it was time to play the Feud. You see, Showboat features a nightly "Family Feud Stage Show", which gives any audience member a chance to get up on stage and play the game.

Guess which audience member got up on stage and played the game?

That's right. Yours truly actually can say that he played on the Family Feud, "Stage Show" be damned. To qualify to go on stage, all audience members have to answer three questions. The questions are presented on a big screen. and you essentially have to pick the number one answer for each question via a keypad at your seat. I answered all three questions correctly (and quickly), yet I was still shocked as all hell to see my name on the big screen (shocked enough that I didn't even hear them announce my name as well). I was taken backstage, where I was introduced to my "family" (namely four people I have never met in my life).

The production assistants lined us up behind the giant family placard that you always see families posing in before they run onstage. We were told, "Come up with a good pose; be as silly as you want." Apparently, I was the only family member to hear said instructions; while the rest of the team emoted total nothingness, I put my face in my hands like I was a five-year-old in a Welch's Grape Juice commercial. Allow me to summarize my feelings in the form of a faux Family Feud question:

"Name an emotion you feel when you're the only one on stage looking like an idiot."
"Number one answer!"

After shaking off the overwhelming feeling of dumbassedness, I prepared for the task ahead...winning 100 bucks. For this version of the game, the first team to 200 points would win. The winning team got 100 bucks for each member, whereas the losing team got fitty (I sincerely hope you've figured out by now that's not a typo). I was in the middle position on my team, so in the hopes of avoiding the toss-up question, I turned to the first two teammates and said, "I really don't want to go up there, so if you two could wrap this game up in two questions, I'd greatly appreciate it. No pressure." Though they did laugh at my request, I couldn't help but think that the word "asshole" had crossed their mind at some point in that five-second span.

Our team was off to a good start, as we stole the first question away from our opponents. So far, so good. The second question was, "Name something you need if you break your leg." My teammate answered, "Cast," which was the number two answer. I can't remember what the opposing player answered; all I know is that our team gained control.

So for the first time in the game, I actually would have to answer a question. Before that, however, I had to introduce myself to the audience, which led to my heart beating at roughly 4778971 beats per minutes. However, the tension was eased when I had the following exchange with the host who, despite the fact I have no earthly clue who he is, gained my infinite respect:

"So, tell us about yourself."
"I'm Dan. I'm from Chadds Ford, PA, and I am a Foreign Student Advisor."
"Oh wow, what exactly do you advise them on?"
"Immigration policy, university policy, etc."
"Very nice. Maybe you can advise our current President on immigration policy as well."

He tried to backstep and say that he wasn't trying to imply anything about our current Commander-in-Chief, but it was too late; he simply couldn't avoid the thunderous ovation that erupted from the seemingly-liberal audience. Unfortunately, the other nine players must have been Republicans, because I was the only one onstage joining the audience in their applause. Political skewering aside, I finally answered the broken leg question with "crutches," which was the number one answer. So from here on in, I can always say I gave a number one answer on Family Feud.

Unfortunately for our team, we did not keep the momentum going and ended up losing the points to our opponents. Unfortunately for me, this meant I had no choice but to answer the toss-up question.

Um, dammit?

I guess I was a wee bit too anxious, as I started running to the podium well before the host had instructed us to come up. Oops. I think the host made some crack, but my mind was too busy screaming "Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!" for me to really hear him.

Our question: "Name a famous Jack from a children's story or fairy tale."

I actually delayed on buzzing in, mainly because my mind drew an absolute blank. Once the answer finally came to me, my opponent buzzed in. I'm assuming he used mental telepathy to steal my idea of "Jack and the Beanstalk", which of course ended up being the number one answer. Naturally, he could have come up with the answer without resorting to shameless abuse of psychic powers, but I'm all about making myself feel better (even if at the risk of making absolutely no sense).

So the other team had control, which led to the far-and-away best answer of the night. Again, keep in mind the question: "Name a famous Jack from a children's story or fairy tale." You can then just imagine the uncontrollable laughter when a player answered, "Jack the Ripper." I won't lie; despite the fact he was on the other team, part of me was hoping his answer would actually be up there. But alas, it wasn't. And alas alas, their team swept the question, which gave them the victory and the $100. Hey, I was still happy no matter what; I got to play on Family Feud, and I won my fitty buy-in back that I had lost in the poker tournament several hours earlier.

Thankfully, I was able to end my superflously-hyphenated-going-to-AC-three-times-in-one-week-excursion-of-fun on a great note. So to keep the theme, I end this blog with a superflous picture of Richard Karn.

Until next time...

Monday, July 03, 2006

Classic Moments in Stoopidity: Tom Jones

I was driving down Edgmont Ave. on my lunch break and I drove by Tom Jones, a local 24-hour eatery known for their ubercheap food and universally big-breasted staff. They're also infamous for putting cheesy phrases on their signs, which they generally change once a week.

So I'm sincerely hoping they were going for irony with the sign I saw today. If not, then...wow. That's seriously all I can say. Wow.

Because I'm not a big fan of getting into accidents, I didn't snap a picture of the sign as I drove by it. Instead, using the magic of an online sign generator, I present a reenactment-of-sorts of the stupidity that I bore witness to today...

That is all.

Until next time...