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Archive for the ‘Rants’ Category

Literally

There are a lot of small things that piss me off, but nothing pisses me off more than misuse of the word “literally”. Beside genocide. And racism. And some other things. It’s all on the list.

“Literally”: in the literal, strict, non-figurative sense, i.e. without exaggeration.

The whole point of the word “literally” is to show that something did NOT happen figuratively.

So when you write this: “I literally died”. It means you are dead and somehow your ghost is posting a status update to Facebook. “I died” = legitimate figure of speech. “I literally died” = a fucking paradox.

ghost2

Similarly, when you write “I literally peed myself,” you’re not communicating laughter. You’re reporting urination. It’s a declaration of incontinence. Instead of telling everyone, why don’t you change your pants? What are your priorities?!

pee2

You

And when you tell someone they should “literally” go and fuck themselves, what you’re actually telling them is to go and masturbate. “Hey . . . you . . . stupid person . . . go and stimulate your genital region!” Yeah. Take that. Is that meant to be a punishment? I was probably going to do that anyway. To make this insult functional you have to add something like “while thinking about Rob Ford.” Otherwise it’s really more of a super weird invitation:

unnamed (1) unnamed (2) unnamed (3) unnamed (4) unnamed (5)

“I literally laughed my ass off.” Your bottom separated and fell onto the floor. “I will literally kill you.” You are plotting a murder. “It was literally the worst thing ever.” Forgetting your keys this morning was worse than the Holocaust. These expressions are already hyperbole – what is the point of adding “literally”?

The other day I read this: “the company literally works hand in hand with experts.” So the members of the company and the consultants sit around in a circle and hold hands in meetings. That doesn’t sound creepy at all.

"One of us . . ."

“One of us . . .”

“Literally” = actually happened. I.e. not a figure of speech.

“Figuratively” = what you actually mean when you say “literally”, i.e. the EXACT OPPOSITE THING!

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5 Things I Hate

The last year of earthly things is about doing what you love, but also about not doing what you hate. Here are five things I hate that can bugger off.

1. Crowded supermarkets

I hate shopping. Crowded supermarkets fill me with rage. On the outside, I’m just a regular shopper. Inside I want to do this:

Bart

RUN DOWN THE AISLE WITH WINDMILL ARMS JUST KNOCKING EVERYONE DOWN LIKE HUMAN BOWLING PINS. I don’t care if you’re holding a baby with Down’s syndrome and no arms or legs, I will knock you down. So my resolution is: that’s what I’m going to do.

Or I could just figure out when the supermarket is like, less busy.

An alternative to murder

An alternative to murder

2. Small talk

I don’t care about you. I care about me. I’m sure that deep down, that’s true for you too, and that’s OK. I want to talk about what I like talking about and exactly nothing else. “How about them Habs?” How about them go fuck yourself?

No more small talk.

unnamed

3. Not chocolate

God I love chocolate. I was allergic to chocolate from age like eight to twenty-eight. That’s twenty years. Lindt is crack to me. Ferrero Rocher is my heroine. Toblerone is my whiskey. Whiskey is also my whiskey. I have two whiskies. I’m a lucky man. I want to eat chocolate all the time and not . . . not chocolate . . . and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

homer

4. My cat

Just kidding. My cat is my favourite person in the world. He’s the Han Solo of cats, a loveable rogue who is aloof and independent, but you know he would swoop out of nowhere to shoot down a TIE fighter for you at the eleventh hour in a rusty bucket of bolts with his trusty ape-man sidekick . . . My metaphor is confusing. I like my cat.

han

This picture further confuses the issue. Because now in the metaphor I’m Princess Leia and my cat is talking to me

5. Not going for it

One thing I learned in my first last year of earthly things is that I was wrong about something. I thought: at the end, we only regret our unkindnesses. When I imagined it was the end . . . what I regretted was just any time I didn’t go for it. Not going for it is shitty.

This kid goes for it

This kid knows

Small talk . . . supermarket . . . Bad.

Chocolate . . . cat . . . going for it. Good.

Let’s go.

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I LOVE ALADDIN. 1. He’s a loveable rogue in a classic rags to riches story. 2. Everyone wants a pet monkey. 3. He gets to bang Jasmine.

There comes a time in everyone’s lives, however, when they realise that we have grown up on lies. Yeah. Maybe we’re all going to marry princes and princesses . . . become rich and famous . . . go on daring adventures on magic carpets in exploding volcanos of molten gold. In BULLSHIT LAND. In the real world, none of this is true, and I’m still sore about it. I HATE YOU DISNEY BUT I LOVE YOU.

magic

The greatest disappointment of my adult life was realising that Aladdin is actually a hobo. He’s a homeless man who commits petty thefts to survive. I don’t think they had cardboard back then, but if they did, Aladdin would have been sleeping on it. Curled up in a fetal position around a paper bag concealing a bottle of cheap wine. This might still have an air of devil-may-care romance until you consider these realities:

He might have a meth problem.
He probably smells like piss.
He has a monkey, so he may have fleas, ticks, and worms.

aladdinchange

Genie’s advice to Aladdin: “Just beeee yourself.” No. GET A JOB. Shower. Cut your hair. Quit drinking so much. STOP BEING A HOBO.

This makes the whole romantic story between Aladdin and Jasmine bullshit. How many girls do you know who would date a homeless man? Zero. How many rich spoiled girls can you think of who would marry a bum? Think celebrities – the royalty of modern times. For example, Kim Kardashian:

Just wanted to use this picture again

Just wanted to use this picture again

NONE. The story represents the ideal of social mobility in democratic, post-industrialised capitalist societies and it is a LIE. The reality is that while our social and economic system sometimes rewards intelligence and hard work, it’s also a dog-eat-dog world where overall the poor stay poor and the rich stay rich. (In the U.S., the poor become poorer and the rich become richer). When was the last time you met a rich, successful person who was originally homeless?

aladdin1

This also applies to dating. The real Jasmine would never date a bum. Why not? Because all Aladdin’s friends are beggars and crack whores. He stinks and might masturbate in public. When Aladdin lied about who he was, posing as Prince Ali, he was just being realistic. Here is a version of Aladdin in which he told the truth at the beginning:

aladdin3

aladdinhobo

He lied, the same way we lie on our resumés, the same way we fake it until we make it in new jobs, because Aladdin – if not Disney – had his head in the real world. Like me:

al

Disney movies are lies – and to be honest, I guess that’s why we love them. They show us the world as we wish it really was.

"You mean like this?"

“You mean like this?”

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6 Things Bartenders Hate

I love my job, I have tons of fun and get paid to laugh and drink with my friends. But there are some things I hate – I mean HATE – and here they are:

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1. “What do you have?”

A typical bar has at least 40 different alcohols and ten mixers. Plus beer and shots. What do you want me to do, stand here like an asshole naming them all?

Do you walk into a supermarket and ask: “what do you have?”

Now maybe the question is meant as, what drinks do you serve that are common? I.e. vodka cranberry, gin and tonic, rum and coke, etc.

There are 50 people waiting. What do you think?

bar rum

You might think it’s better to specify a basic spirit – but it’s worse. Example: “Excuse me, do you have vodka?”

This is like walking into a bank and asking: “Do you have money?” Of course they have money. They’re a fucking bank. “Yeah but what about 20 dollar bills?” “Yes, we have all basic types of money.” “OK but what about 5s?” Kill yourself. It’s like walking into a zoo and asking, do you have animals? No, they all died and instead of closing down we replaced them with sad cardboard cutouts. It’s busy – order a goddamn drink.

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2. Waving money

I get it. You have money. You’re going to pay with it.

Listen. EVERYONE here has money. Everyone is going to pay using some form of money. We’re all in the same boat – the boat of exchanging currency for goods and services. It’s not like the bartender was about to stand back and shout:

money1

bar chimp1

money2

money3

No one here is trying to barter. No one is offering goats or daughters. It’s all money. Waving your money about just makes you look like an asshole.

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3. Demanding service when you’re not ready to order anything

The bar is slammed. Down one end, a girl gesticulates wildly.

“COME HERE OR I’M GOING TO DIE!”

“Oh my God. What’s happening? Is someone hurt?”

“Hi.” Turning to her friend. “Hey Trisha what do you want?”

“Um I don’t know.”

“Me neither.”

“Ask him if he has vodka.”

“Do you have vodka?”

“. . .

“Hey. HEY! WAIT! WHERE ARE YOU GOING? DO YOU HAVE VODKA?”

Why? Why are you doing this? You’re not ready! Other people are waiting! I want to serve them!

tricking2

“Hi, I’m back. What would you like?”

“Oh . . . OH. I wasn’t prepared for this question.”

“What the f-“

“Do you have drinks?

“. . . Yes.”

“I’ll take one.”

“I . . . Here.”

“Thanks.”

“That’s $7.50 please.”

“Money! You . . . want me to give you money?” 

“. . .”

“Oh. I didn’t see this step coming. OK . . . let me pull out the purse in the clutch in my handbag . . . Sorry . . . There are a lot of clasps. TRISHA, DO YOU HAVE ‘MONEY’?”

Fucking really?

Bitch

Everyone

Is waiting

For you

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4. Reaching into the bar

A crowded bar can be chaotic. It can sometimes feel like a siege:

bar siege helms deep

People get rowdy, they’re all like:

bar orcs good

The bartender is putting out drinks as fast as he can, he’s like:

bar2

In such chaos, there have to be some rules. One golden rule is that no one reaches into or comes behind the bar. There is an invisible territory line and if you cross it you will die. Ignoring this can meet with extreme reactions:

bar gandalf gif

But the worst, the absolute worst thing that anyone can do, is to reach over and pour from your beer taps. At the end of the night, the bartender is personally accountable for whatever you steal. And I don’t want to pay for your goddamn drinks. I came here to make money, not to pay for some asshole to steal from me. The territorial reaction that this triggers is primal:

bar primal gif

In fact, it should be a valid defense for manslaughter: “He poured from my taps.”

bar4

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5. Credit and debit cards

Plastic is the bane of a bartender’s existence, at least when it’s being used to pay for one thing at a time or when everyone wants a separate bill on debit or credit. It slows everything down, meaning other people have to wait longer.

“Hi. We want to split this bill twelve ways but five of those are half cash and half card and three of them aren’t separate they’re together and those three are three quarters on four different cards and one quarter in American dollars do you mind?”

When this happens to me I just want to turn to everyone waiting for drinks and say, “Guys . . . I am going to be doing stupid shit for 15 minutes. Please pour your own pints and leave money on the bar.” But I can’t.

Do I mind? Yes I mind but we both know you are too lazy and disorganised to do this differently.

Paying for one drink at a time on plastic is also ball-bustingly annoying. This is what your bartender is thinking:

bar5

A lot of people use cards this way because they don’t want to pay charges on the ATM withdrawal. When it’s crowded, this in a sense costs the bartenders money, because they’re spending their time running cards instead of serving and making tips.

“Do you want a tab?”

“No I’d rather you run my card 14 times for $6.50 each time.”

“Oh.”

Die.

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6. The Sneaky Tip Take Away

You probably expect a rant about bad tippers and walkouts. But I’m not going to do it. Here is how I see my job: I pull a lever – a beer tap – and a dollar comes out. It’s magical and wonderful and makes absolutely no sense and I thank you for it, North America. In Australia, we don’t have a tipping system. Employers just pay people reasonable wages. So thank you, North American employers, for inventing this system from which I ultimately benefit. I’m also going to omit walkouts. It goes without saying that when someone runs out on their bill, and you have to pay for it, it sucks.

One thing that I really hate however is the Sneaky Tip Take Away. This is when someone reaches into their pocket/fumbles in their wallet, pretending to hunt for a tip, until you stop looking, whereupon they stealthily ninja into the night.

Except that I can see them – making it a ninja fail:

bar ninja fail

I guess the aim is to leave me feeling confused. I’m not confused, I just think you’re an asshole. Why toy with me like that? You’re like a cock tease . . . but a tip tease . . . you’re tip teasing. Taking the tip and just playing with it, waiting for me to get excited. Then running away. What the fuck is this?

“You want it? You want this? Just the tip? Just the tip tippity tip? Yeah? NO TIP FOR YOU! HAHAHA!”

It’s good to ask in situations like this, “Is there something in your pocket?”, to put the person on the spot. Except that you can come off kind of creepy:

bar3

Which is not hospitable in the hospitality industry.

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Robot boogers

ONE THING THAT I THINK IS AMAZINGLY UGLY is a septum piercing, especially this kind:

sept2

It looks like boogers. Like giant metal boogers coming out of your nose. Robot boogers.

Or like you had normal boogers, but they got really hard and you polished them.

Or like that ring that goes through a bull’s nose (which is why septum piercings are also called bull-ring piercings).

Why anyone would want these is a mystery to me. Look what it does to someone’s face. Here is a perfectly pretty girl:

pretty

Now here is that exact same girl with a septum piercing:

6a0112796f38d028a4015390d4b187970b-800wi

I’m still turned on. Yeah. But it feels . . . wrong.

I’ve seen a few OK ones. Example:

tumblr_m558exPDWZ1qiw7ydo1_500

But basically this is a case of, she looks like she has boogers but she’s cute even with boogers.

Here is a worst case scenario:

sept

Now I know I might have friends reading this with septum piercings. And I’m not trying to offend you. All I’m saying is . . . that in my opinion . . . which is totally subjective . . . You look like a cow with robot boogers.

OK. Bye.

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Really?

I PROMISED TO POST MY ATTEMPT AT A LOVE SONG, and I’m going to. My guitar, Tangle, is in guitar hospital, but should be discharged next week. In the meantime, here’s a disheartening conversation I had last night at work:

___________________________________________________________________

Hey! So let’s play a game. I name a country and whoever shouts out the capital first gets a shot!

Girl 1: What do you mean?

OK, well for example, if I said England, you would say . . .

Girl 1: Uuum.

Girl 2: Oh. I know this.

Girl 3: Isn’t it London?

I should have known something was wrong . . .

I should have known something was wrong . . .

. . . Well yeah. OK let’s stick to the easy ones. What is the capital . . . of the United States of America?

Girl 1: I don’t know. GIGGLE.

Girl 2: Is it . . . Ottawa?

Wait a second. You’re Canadian right.

Girl 2: Yes

And you think the capital of the United States is Ottawa.

Girl 2: I don’t know.

Girl 3: I think it’s Washington D.C.

OK. Wow. Thank God you girls have a friend who isn’t retarded.

Girl 1: We’re not retarded! We live in Quebec! We don’t know about the rest of the world.

1633610_700b

Europe?

Here is one for real now. If any one of you gets this, I will give you all a shot. And a car. I will buy you a car. What is the capital of Germany?

Girl 1: GIGGLE

Girl 2: Uuuum. Auschwitz?

That is a concentration camp in Poland.

Girl 2: Oh. GIGGLE.

Holy sweet Jesus.

Girl 1: It’s not our fault. It’s a problem with society.

You ARE the problem.

AWKWARD SILENCE

MORE AWKWARD SILENCE

AWKWARD SILENCE IS AWKWARD

___________________________________________________________

Is this real life?

Here’s a video:

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PSY’S GANGNAM STYLE was a massive hit, reaching over 1.2 BILLION views on YouTube. The song parodies “posers and wannabes” who claim to be “Gangnam Style” – Gangnam being an affluent suburb in Seoul associated with a lavish lifestyle. Even without understanding the words, it’s catchy and hilarious.

32a

Enter Bart BaKer, an American entertainer . . . comedian . . . thing, who decides to make a parody. Why make a parody of a parody? I don’t know. Because you have money, a camera crew, and it’s bound to get views.

mqdefault

But BaKer’s version makes no sense. It’s about nothing; it’s a parody of something that’s already a parody; the humour is dull and forced. The original used exaggeration to make fun of music video cliches, using silly over-the-top sets and dancing. BaKer’s version uses exaggeration to make fun of Gangnam Style’s exaggeration . . . which seems to miss the point.

How someone manages to look like this much of a dick in a photo, I don't know.

How someone even manages to look like this much of a dick in a photo, I don’t know.

The comedy feels contrived, with the “jokes” consisting of BaKer singing the actions that he’s performing, replacing the chorus with the words “hotdog condom style”, and suggesting that he’s a pedophile and attracted to horses. The entire approach has a sense of desperation: in the first minute, BaKer references pedophilia, bestiality, and bukkake for no real reason, throwing in words like “semen”, “fat”, and “slut”, pretty much at random, just in case it elicits a chuckle. It’s the machine-gun approach to comedy. ONE OF THESE HAS GOT TO MAKE YOU LAUGH. In the grand finale of the video, he eats a hotdog that had presumably been housed in a condom, letting the chewed meat fall out of his mouth.

COMEDIC BRILLIANCE. LOOK AT THE SAUSAGE. IT HAS BEEN CHEWED AND IS FALLING OUT OF HIS MOUTH. OHOHOHO. DEEP BELLY LAUGH.

There IS one part at which I chuckled. It was when BaKer lunges toward a girl in slow-motion singing “…”. Apart from that I went through the same progression of awkward faces that I wore when watching the opening monologue for Taylor Swift’s music video “Trouble”:

n4f3fd9730fa3fsmall_halle_berry_cringecringe

2dd9e9223798a6f6b4cd7ad023fcd33490cc715dThe worst part of the whole idea is that since the original is also a parody, BaKer’s parody invites a direct comparison with the original. The original represents original comedy, and the parody is actually clever. It’s making fun of posers and wannabes, which has a universal element. BaKer’s version, on the other hand, is about singing words that sound funny together: “hotdog” and “condom”. “Hotdog condom”. Hahaha. Ha. Ah. It is the American toilet humour response to social satire: the equivalent of smearing poop on a wall and calling it comedy.

Somehow it boasts almost 15 million views and over 72,000 likes.

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