Wait For It… a blog by Andy Ross

Random “Facts”

Posted on May 20, 2010

A list of random, fun facts I made up:

Abraham Lincoln’s brain weighed 40 score and 200 grams.

Our word for “sweater” comes from the Norse god Svetinöðr, god of comfy knits and fetid goat’s milk.

The world record for the longest beard is 3 ½ centimeters.

In WWII, housewives used beaded curtains on their showers in order to donate shower doors to the war front.

The word “MILF” was first coined by Plato in his work, The Republic.

The most common name in 2009 was Shmuley. Boy or girl.

In Victorian England, a popular hobby among the elite was crafting tiny bowlers and top hats for honeybees.

More plates are broken accidentally each year at the Cheesecake Factory in Schaumburg, Illinois than on purpose in all Greek restaurants worldwide.

The average American has two extra “backup” eyes floating around somewhere inside his or her body.

Leonardo da Vinci invented the parachute in 1515, though he thought he had invented a new chili recipe.

In your lifetime, you will swim an average of 2,000 miles in your sleep, due to sleep swimming.

Somewhere, someone is totally doing it right now. You know, it.

The average lifespan of an unopened Twinkie is 25 days. The average lifespan of an opened Twinkie is mmfph mmff mphhmm.

Wild golden retrievers have been known to build underground colonies that can stretch up to 15 miles.

The most expensive diamond in the world has been stolen 42 times, each time by a crew of baby geniuses.

Mountain ogres account for up to 80% of all hiking deaths.

The original mascot for the Milwaukee Brewers baseball team was Rummy the Rum-Drinking Alcoholic. He could only sober up by drinking healthy, refreshing beer.

Ice cube trays are for making ice cubes.

Pickles can be turned back into cucumbers through an expensive process called “de-gherking.”

The only U.S. president* who could breathe underwater was Rutherford B. Hayes. (*Because of the voodoo involved, Grover Cleveland wasn’t technically breathing underwater.)

The red-eyed tree frog of Central America can speak to humans once a year on Christmas morning, but it won’t because it’s selfish.

[Author's note: I sure hope a couple of these make it into some aunt’s email forward one day.]


Quick Tour Of Hell

Posted on May 19, 2010


Hello! Welcome to Hell. Let me give you folks a quick tour. Oh, I’m sorry, can you take off your shoes? Thanks. I know, it’s totally anal and gross, but we just prefer no shoes. There’s a mat over by the door.

Okay, so this is the front entryway. It’s filled with people who haven’t seen important movies yet. They’re constantly complaining about overhearing spoilers. Super annoying. So, we punish them by revealing the endings in code. Like, remember how in The Usual Suspects, Limpy McSourpuss goes all mug-breaky?

Then, this is the second circle. (Hell’s concentric circles, by the way. That was in vogue when we built it, but hanging pictures is a drag, and it’s way leaky when it rains.) This is all the people too into internet porn. What a cliché. We punish them with dial-up connections and malware.

Here’s the third circle. This is for the people who read New York Magazine or Travel and Leisure. We figured we’d put the lifestyle porn people next to the porn porn people. We don’t really torture these people, because they're already doing it, themselves.

Moving on, this next circle is where we put the old ladies in line at Walgreens. Y’know, the ones who try to use expired coupons for junk food? What we do is have one cashier who seems like she’s open, but she’s really just counting cash. So, the lines get all messed up, and then the old ladies fight it out over who was there first.

This fifth circle is for teenage girls. We try not to get involved with their punishment, because it’s not worth the screaming or, worse, the pouting. Essentially, though, it’s that there’s a really cool pool party going on somewhere that none of them got invited to.

Ooh, this is the Stygian Marsh. Next year this is all gonna be condos.

The sixth circle is for the people who don’t own a TV. We get it; you have more important things to do with your life than watch Lost. Shut up and don’t ruin things for everyone else. We cram them all into a tiny Starbucks with only one outlet for all their laptops. Try to finish writing your freelance articles now, assholes.

So, this is the seventh circle. This one’s my favorite. It’s for the gays. Not that being gay is a sin; that’s a total myth. There are tons of awesome homos in Heaven. This is just for the ones who think that being gay automatically makes you witty. Enough with the strained wordplay, already! The punishment here is that it’s a loud dinner party, where you have to keep repeating your lame, half-heard puns, thus taking all the fun out of it.

(We’re almost done, I promise. I know it’s huge, and if I had my choice, we’d downsize to a much smaller Hell. But, you just acquire so many souls when you’ve stayed in the same place this long.)

Then, this is the eighth circle. This is where all the state senators end up. So, this is where the majority of sins have been committed—pandering, hypocrisy, thievery, counterfeiting, sowing of discord—standard state politics. This circle is where we pull out all the classic torture stuff. I’d get into it, but it’s honestly pretty gross and flesh-rippy. Totally deserved, though.

Okay, the ninth circle. This is for this one girl, Beth, who totally pretended to be my friend in Junior High. (This was back in Heaven, before I fell from grace.) One day in line for lunch, she yells, “Hey, everybody, check this out!” And, she yanks down my pants. She pantsed me in front of the entire Heaven! I never lived that down. I think it might be why I eventually became so rebellious and ended up down here. Anyway, Beth is frozen up to her face in ice now, and sometimes I flick my boogers at her.

So, you’ve finally made it! Here’s the end of the tour. My bedroom. This is where the magic happens. I’m just kidding. Can I get you a Coke or water or anything? What do you want to do? We could fire up the Wii or play Bananagrams. I’m cool with whatever.


Drinking Mnemonic

Posted on May 18, 2010

A simple mnemonic device to remember at the bar:

Beer before liquor, never been sicker. Liquor then beer, you’re in the clear.

Beer before more beer, the frat boys will cheer. Liquor and more liquor, joyride in a cherry picker.

"Near beer" before liquor, now you got trickier. Liquor then a cute rear, you probably will leer.

Beer and then licorice, my that’s a tasty dish. Liquor then bears, campers caught unawares.

Beer and then wine, ‘cause it’s in summertime. Wine then soft cheeses, give me more pleases.

This drinking mnemonic has been brought to you by New Hope Rehabilitation Center. It’s never too late to start your life over full of hope.


Re: Your Play

Posted on May 17, 2010

Dear Patrick,

I wanted to drop you a note to thank you for inviting an old lady like me to your play. I just had such a fun time coming into the city to see your show. Like I said at work, I had no idea we had a real, live star in our office.

Donna from accounting wanted to come with, but walking up six flights to a downtown loft wouldn’t be good for her hip. I called her afterward and told her you were terrific onstage. I really think you have a future in that, if you ever give up temping.

I do wish you would have warned me about the nudity. Not that I’m a prude or anything, but I brought along my nephew, Chet. He got bitten by the acting bug during his community college’s production of Lil’ Abner last fall. I thought it’d be good for him to see a real New York show, because he loves that Mama Mia movie so much. He can do every dance by heart.

Anyhoo, your performance was just terrific. I loved the music and the puppets and everything. I’ll admit I had a hard time following the plot at points. I still don’t understand why you had that rope tied so tight around your genitals for the second half. And, the bit where those other naked men hit you with pool noodles; if your character really was a time-travelling space angel, why wouldn’t you have just teleported away?

But, all in all, I thought it was real nice. Chet did, too. On the ride home, he couldn’t stop talking about the scene where you were lifting weights to prepare for your battle with the evil Space Soldiers. And, he thought the Moon Queen’s costume was gorgeous.

I’ll see you at the office on Monday. I hope this note finds you well, and that you were able to wash off all that glitter make-up. Chet asked me for your contact info to talk about acting and things, so I passed along your work email. I hope that was okay. I'm sure you two artistic types would have a ton to talk about.

Thanks again,


Low Key – May 16, 2010

Posted on May 16, 2010

The New Yorkie


Notes From The Inside

Posted on May 15, 2010


I found the most beautiful vase at a flea market this morning. The seller was asking $4000 for it, which is ridiculous. $4000 for mid-century stoneware? So, when he wasn’t looking, I climbed inside and hid.

It’s a big vase, about the size of a tall wine barrel. But, it’s surprisingly cramped in here, since it narrows at the bottom. I’m not sure what I expected to do once I got inside, but I've been working on listening to my instincts more. Maybe, I had some subconscious plan to wait until nightfall and steal it?

Anyway “best laid plans of mice and men,” because someone bought the vase about fifteen minutes ago. Now, I’m in the back of a delivery van headed towards Connecticut. (I might lose my iPhone signal at some point, so I’m sorry if I can’t finish this post.) I don’t know what to do.

Ideally, I could just jump out once we get wherever we’re going and yell, “Surprise!” But, here’s the thing, I think I recognized the voice of the buyer. It’s my ex-wife.

I know, right?!! What are the chances? But, then I started thinking about it, and of course we’d have the same taste in over-sized, stoneware vases. It’s what brought us together in the first place.

So, I think what I’m going to do is this: I’m going to pretend the vase is haunted. I mean, the acoustics in this thing are pretty creepy to begin with. And, I already know tons of trivia about my ex to make it convincing. A couple of whispered details about her grandmother should get this vase thrown out lickety-split.

Anyway, we’re about to go through the tunnel, so wish me luck.


Our Last Therapy Session

Posted on May 14, 2010

Doctor, I’ve been thinking, and I think maybe this should be our last session. I’d like to start working with a different therapist. No, don’t start crying. It’s nothing personal. Please stop.

It’s not that I think you’re a bad therapist; it’s just we never really clicked. For instance, I’m not used to being yelled at so much. And, when I talked about my claustrophobia, the chicken clucking sounds you made—I don’t think those were helpful.

No, it’s not an attack. I’m simply trying to give you some professional feedback. Like, with the role playing you had us try. When you asked me to pretend you were my father to work through my guilt; that was good. You did a great job with that. But, the next week, when you put on the French maid outfit and called me The Baron; that wasn’t so positive.

Hey, hey! There’s no need to swear. Like I said, this isn’t a referendum on you as a therapist. It’s about the two of us, as doctor and patient, not matching up. Partially because I’m not nearly as racist as you. I admit I laughed at a few of your jokes, but it was a nervous laughter. If I didn’t laugh, you tended to leave the room in a huff.

I think maybe a new therapist wouldn’t practice his stage hypnotism on me. Or, see what you did just now? I don’t think another therapist would have thrown his pen at my head. That’s just a guess.

I get why you’re upset. That’s perfectly reasonable. Remember how I got upset when you posted all those tweets about my anxiety-induced diarrhea? By the way, you should know that Twitter time stamps those things, so I know you’re tweeting during our sessions.

I should probably get going. I can see by your dry heaves that you’re getting more and more upset. I won’t ask for a referral on a new psychologist, because the job coach you recommended turned out to be a cult leader.

Goodbye, Doctor.

Yeah, sure, we can still be friends on Facebook. But, please stop sending me vacation photos of you in the sauna.


How To Cook An Artichoke

Posted on May 13, 2010


So, you’ve never cooked an artichoke before, and you want to give it a try? Are you sure you want to do that? I mean, yes, artichokes can be delicious. But, cooking them is a huge pain is the ass. It’s a ton of work for very little edible results. Still want to give it a go? You’re that stubborn? Well, alright, let’s do this.

Step 1. You’ll need a pair of cooking sheers. Look in the busted kitchen drawer. They’ll be lodged under the egg beater, so it’ll take awhile. Why do you need scissors? Because, artichokes have thorns on every leaf. That’s right; you are about to eat something that doesn’t want to be eaten. So much so, it grew thorns.

Step 2. After trimming off the tips of each leaf (because of the thorns that can draw blood if you’re not careful), you’ll want to… What? You’re not done cutting the thorns off one at a time? Okay, we’ll wait.

Ready now? No?

How about now? Sure, I understand; it’s tedious. Alright, after all that, slice a half inch off the tip of the artichoke. Good luck.

Step 3. Trim and remove all but an inch off of the stem. The stem is technically edible, but it’s tough and sometimes bitter. Again, probably because artichokes don’t want to be eaten. Have you noticed the word “choke” in the name? That’s not a coincidence.

Step 4. Rinse off the dirt. You won’t get all off it, because there will be some trapped between the leaves. But, take your time and try. It’s only been what? A half hour of prep time so far?

Step 5. Fill a large pot with two inches of water, and place a vegetable steamer inside. Your son or boyfriend may have used the steamer as a pretend “satellite dish,” so check the roof of his fort. Bring the water to a boil.

Step 6. Steam the artichokes for 45 minutes. Oh, you read that right. 45 minutes. You probably shouldn’t have started cooking the rest of dinner already, because these artichokes are gonna hold things up.

Keep checking back on the pot to make sure the water hasn’t boiled away. I’ve ruined like four pots trying to cook stupid artichokes. Now, I buy cheap pots at TJ Maxx, expecting that they’ll get destroyed at some point.

Step 7. You’ll know the artichokes are done when the outer leaves are easy to peel off. Careful checking, because it’ll be hot and may still have sharp thorns that you missed. I wouldn't blame you if you had given up halfway through trimming the leaves.

Step 8. After they’ve cooled a bit, peel off the leaves and dip them in melted butter. But, here’s the thing: You don’t eat the whole leaf. You just scrape the tiniest bit of edible artichoke flesh off the base of each leaf with your teeth. I know, right? All that work for that? Really, it’s just a conduit for melted butter. You could have just melted butter and taken a sip.

You know what else tastes good with melted butter? Everything. Every single thing tastes good with melted butter. Asparagus—that tastes good with melted butter. Broccoli—also good with melted butter. Brussel sprouts—they smell like pee, but even they taste good with melted butter. You don’t even have to melt butter. Regular butter tastes good, too.

Step 9. Alright, there’s some other stuff after you’re done eating the leaves. Like, you can scrape out the fibrous “choke,” which will make your kitchen look like a squirrel exploded. And, somewhere underneath that is an artichoke heart.

But, honestly, it’s late, and I’m super tired. And, I didn’t even want to write this recipe out, anyway. Because, why should I help you with your masochistic impulses? You could have just bought a can of artichoke hearts at the grocery store. Done and done.

I’m going to bed. Good luck with your damn artichokes.


Ode To A Swan

Posted on May 12, 2010


Oh, you swan;
You beautiful swan;
You swan which swam,
Swimming so swan-like and so on.
Swim, you swan. Swim.

Now wander, swan.
Wander, waddling the along warm sand.
Waddle towards that trash can;
And stretch your swan-ish neck
To check for Annette’s discarded hamburger.
Who knew swans wanted McDonalds?

Now, hiss;
Hiss, you swan.
Hiss at that kid whose wrist you will hit;
Swinging your long neck
And smacking it, stingingly, upon that kid’s back.
You are an evil hissing bitch, swan.
I know you’re male swan, but you’re still a bitch.

Like some old, once-handsome Broadway star
That I accidently make eye contact with at Borders;
And, the dude starts screaming about his privacy;
And I’m all like, “Whoa, I don’t even know who you are, dude.”
And, the mean, old queen turns green
And pats his heart with a salmon-colored scarf
And, dejectedly seeks his autobiography;
But, they don’t carry it. Why would they?

You are like that old dude, swan;
Except worse, because you hit kids;
And get away with it because you’re a wild animal.
You’re a jerk, swan.
So, why don’t you go jerk off, swan?

Ooooh, look at me, I’m a swan.
Fuck you.


I’ve Stepped in It

Posted on May 11, 2010

Hey, can you do me a favor and look at the bottom of my shoe? Can you see if this is jelly I've stepped in? Just check and tell me if this is jelly or something else. I really hope it's jelly.

No no no, I know it's gross, but I appreciate the help, and it's probably jelly. Just take a quick peek. Maybe smell it and see if it smells sweet? I'd take off my shoe and do it myself, but whatever it is, it's gotten all over my laces, and I don't want to touch them. Just in case.

Please? I only worry because I was walking down near Union Square, where the gutter punks and meth heads hang out. So, it could be anything--jelly, jam, melted lollipop, ground beef, pigeon brains. That said, I'm sure it's probably jelly. Here, take a look. Get your nose right in there.

Oohhh, shit. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to kick you in the face. I am so sorry. That was a total accident. Wow, that was clumsy.

And, now you’ve got jelly on your forehead. I hope it's jelly.

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