Thao & The Get Down Stay Down - Holy Roller
I am a woman of leisure
Thao & The Get Down Stay Down - Holy Roller
I am a woman of leisure
My new favorite genre of YouTube video: people slowly opening sealed packs of old Magic: the Gathering cards and finding ultravaluable cards inside. The rising tension followed by elated release is an almost perfect narrative arc. Best three so far:
I love these
You may ask, when watching this part of a documentary on Robert Fripp’s guitar classes, if the dumb, staccato guitar riff ever ends. The answer is yes, but only after three and a half minutes.
Ep 59 with Mano Agapion-
This week, I interview Bucky Cutts. Bucky is a possessed doll who used to murder people, and now lives as a normal boy. I spoke with Bucky about bullying, fantasies, and Astoria’s thriving Greek neighborhood.
if the movie stinks, just don’t go.
My junior year of highschool through my sophmore year in college, I posted on the FYAD message board.
FYAD stood for Fuck You and Die. It was a message board that aggressively rejected new people and demanded people be funny in a very specific, so stupid it was actually smart way. To get in there, you had to lurk a lot and figure out their style. Then, you had to slowly, carefully chime in with decent jokes, and if nobody told you to get the fuck out, you could start your own message threads without someone immediately changing it so it just had a picture of a penis covered in bees.
I liked it immediately.
Much like my eventual UCB “career”, I was never one of the cool kids. I was not an immediate superstar with boundless charisma like Nikki Fishsticks or Moof, nor did I have the tenure or cache of a Jack Daniels or a BukkakeParty, and I certainly wasn’t as funny as C Cardigan (I still think this post - https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/11389687/ccardigan-dinnerparty.gif -, where he responded to another message board’s thread of “which fictional characters would you invite to a dinner party,” is hysterically funny). I flew under the radar and was known as a solid hand. I was well liked - not revered, but not hated. Most importantly, I was a regular.
Being a regular had certain responsibilities. I had to be funny, and I had to tell other people who weren’t funny that they weren’t funny and should get the fuck out. I had to keep up the running bits about Barnacle Jim having a long face and corsair being an old man. Occasionally, I got to be the one to put the picture of a penis covered in bees in bad threads. It took a lot of my time.
Being a regular meant the other regulars were my friends. Between all the bits and layers of sarcasm and irony, people would tell you real things about themselves. I learned NikkiFishsticks’ first name and that Lambface was a girl. I was very, very hesitant to give up details about my life. I didn’t want people to know too much about me, because I really, deeply didn’t want to be teased. Even on the Internet, I was uncomfortable with myself. But I envied the superstars, the people who would talk about who they were. They were just as funny as me, but people knew them better, liked them more, laughed at them more. Maybe they were less afraid than I was. Maybe they were being the people they always wanted to be.
I eventually stopped posting because I got too busy. I started taking classes at UCB, and that felt closer to the flame than ironically talking about anime. But it was strangely great training, and not just for comedy. Everywhere I go, I’m walking into a version of FYAD. There’s usually a lot less penises swarmed by bees.
A lot of these posters are semi-famous and making careers now. One of the Welcome To Nightvale guys, who I knew as maxnmona. Jon Hendren, or @fart on Twitter, who I knew better as DocEvil. It’s strange to see them in different places. I know so many little details about their life, and in a lot of ways, know nothing about them at all. I wonder if they remember me. I wonder if they thought I was funny, or if I they thought I could have put myself out there more.
If I could do it again, I would tell them all I hadn’t had sex yet, that college was overwhelming but I was starting to see that it would end up OK, that I was afraid I would never make it as a comedy writer and I would have to learn to be satisfied with a life of unfulfilled dreams. And then I would make fun of rocco2nr’s hat.
So good. So, so good.
This is amazing.
My cats are fine now, btw!
One of the most delightful “inside baseball” moments in a while.
I love that not only are the impressions niche and for a very hyper specific set of people, but so is the subject matter.
The thing I’m going to miss the most about Derek Jeter is small, but crucial to understanding why he is so beloved. In every postgame interview, Derek Jeter would always say, “we.” We had a great game. We hit well. We played hard. Even if he made the big plays, it was always we. When they lost, even if he went four for four, it was always, “we didn’t hit when we needed to.” Conversely, A-Rod was always “I.” I played well. I’m proud I made that play. I didn’t deliver when there were men in scoring position because I’m a stupid baby who swings for the fences instead of laying down a cool opposite field single.
It’s the reason New York loves Derek Jeter, and couldn’t give a shit about Alex Rodriguez.
Alex Rodriguez is immortal. You can never be like him. You can take steroids like him, you can be a great baseball player like him, but you are not a celebrity. You will never hit like him. You will never cosmically matter. That’s what makes him great, in that classical, Greek demigod sense of the word. He is a titan amongst mortals.
Derek Jeter was clutch. He always came through, with a bloop single to right or that jumping, pivoting Jeter throw to make a big out. He was athletic, obviously, and a great player (look at the stats), but that’s not why he was great. He did not hit home runs like Babe Ruth. He did not play a million games like Cal Ripken, Jr. He did not break the color barrier like Jackie Robinson. Who can possibly even dream of being like those guys? Derek Jeter was a guy who showed up, worked hard, hustled, and got results. There was no way to be like him, but there was every way to be like him. You just had to hustle. That’s the mythos of Derek Jeter, despite all the famous and beautiful girlfriends and millions of dollars in endorsement deals. That’s why everyone replays that diving into the stands catch. It’s not amazing because it’s some grand display of athletic prowess. It’s amazing because of the commitment, the disregard for his own well-being and sense of self in the face of a greater cause. He loved the game and he hustled.
That’s why Derek Jeter resonates with New York fans. All the people writing take-downs of Jeter on why he’s not the best and he’s overrated cannot fathom why New York Yankee fans love him so damn much despite mountains of hard evidence that “proves” he’s not worthy of high praise.
And they’ll never understand, because they do not understand New York City. Sure, some of them might have moved to New York. Some of them might have lived in New York far longer than I have been alive. But us Jeter fans feel the pulse of the city in the way they do not, even if they know where to eat on the Upper West Side and where the J train goes.
New York has never been about being the best. It has always been about the hustle to be the best, to do the best. Success is great; we love success. But we are madly, hopelessly in love with the hustle. Just listen to any Jay Z song and count the number of times he talks about hustling. New York is city that wants to work, and wants respect for the work it does. Results only matter if the process is good. If New Yorkers only loved to win, as so many out-of-towners and bitter Red Sox fans suggest, the city would have parades for Goldman Sachs executives, or even worse, Alex Rodriguez. They would be chanting those names, tipping their caps out of R2pect to Hedge Fund number two, JP Morgan, numbah two. But they don’t.
Derek Jeter hustled, and he hustled for the team. It’s a thing no other athlete I can remember ever did as much as he did. I truly believe, and I know this is not provable, and I may very well be wrong, but I always had the sense that Derek Jeter didn’t care about his personal legacy as much as continuing the legacy of the New York Yankees. What other professional athlete does that? Who can expect or demand that? But that’s why LeBron James, in his quest for as many rings he can fit on his fingers, will continue to dominate basketball and sell jerseys and be the Herculean player that he is. He’ll go to the Hall of Fame, deservedly so, but nobody will really be affected. Nobody will cry. How can you get emotional when a Greek God acts like a Greek God? It was expected. It was all too easy. Where was the hustle?
I could write a lot more defending Jeter and the Yankees, but there’s no point. People will believe what they believe. So I’ll just say a quick thing about Jim Leyritz. Baseball might not remember the name Jim Leyritz, but every Yankee fan does. He hit a home run in Game 4 of the 1996 World Series against the Braves. That moment, which tied up the game, is often pointed to as the moment that the momentum of the entire series shifted from the Braves to the Yankees. I’ll never forget that home run, or Jim Leyritz, and it’s not because he was the best hitter of all time, or the best catcher. He found a tiny place on Mount Olympus when he really was never supposed to. He climbed it the hard way.
Is Jeter the best baseball player of all time? No. But who is? Who really is? Who cares! Is he better than Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle, and every other legend in pinstripes? No. But he out-hustled all of those dead mother fuckers, and he did it in the most hustling-ist city in the world.
Derek Jeter forever.
Not to stir the pot, but I am pretty sure I remembered reading that True Detective Season 2 was going to star two female detectives. I thought that was pretty cool to try to get away as far as you can from the ultra masculine characters in Season 1. I was very excited. What happened?
Ep 58 with Betsy Sodaro-
This week, I interview Linda Chobbs. Linda is known for her yard sales, which she is constantly having outside her apartment. I talked to her about her childhood, Batman’s “The Joker,” and how to maintain a twenty year marriage.
My new favorite genre of YouTube video: people slowly opening sealed packs of old Magic: the Gathering cards and finding ultravaluable cards inside....
The Monster Mash is performed by a Mad Scientist, as is made...
I saw The Neighbors (and The Room) last night, and Tommy Wisseau asked the audience to blog about it. So here it...