Listen, guys, I’m really flattered. But I have to RSVP “no” to your diamond heist. Really, good luck with it, but we all know I’d only mess things up.
First off, this master of disguise reputation I’ve somehow gotten is a big exaggeration. Yes, I’m pretty good at disguises, but I’m no master. I’m more of a moustache-and-fake-nose kind of guy. Heck, I don’t even know where my spirit gum is at this point.
Second, I’m pretty physically bumbling. I’d probably just drop all the diamonds down a sewer drain or something. And, then you’d all be mad at me. Or, if there were explosives involved, I would be the guy who tripped and blew himself up unexpectedly. I know you think I won’t because I just said that and it would be too ironic, but I assure you I would.
Also, your email mentioned something about zip-lining. I’m afraid of heights. Like tinkle-my-pants afraid of heights. Are you stuck on zip-lining, because I do much better with tunneling. But, I know that Mitch is claustrophobic, so that wouldn’t work out.
Also, my nephew is getting baptized that afternoon, so I’d have to be done with the heist by 2pm. And, I know you said that it’s clocked in to take 178 seconds maximum before the backup security lasers kick in, but what if something goes wrong and we have to take hostages? Fingers crossed we wouldn’t, but like I said, I’m pretty bumbling, and if something were to go wrong… Hostages are a pain in the ass, you guys. They take, like, forever.
Also also, it’s way to hot out for ski masks. Have you guys thought about rescheduling this heist for the fall? I might be able to psyche myself up for it by then. My fall is pretty free at this point, except for a wedding in October.
I don’t know; that’s all I’ve got right now. I know it doesn’t seem like enough for a definite no to your heist, but I have to listen to my gut here. And, my gut is saying, “Andy, you just don’t have time in your schedule for another project right now.”
Anyway, good luck with your diamond heist. I hope you steal a lot of really nice diamonds.
Well, hello there! Welcome to Clarke & Co. Doggy Daycare, where we provide only the finest care for man’s best friend. Located across from the Trader Joe’s on Route 55, Clarke & Co. is a full-service facility offering dog daycare, cage-free overnight boarding, and doggy fitness facilities. We love to pamper your pets.
We treat your beloved pups as more than simply horrible little poops machines, eating and shitting and gnawing at their own genitals in the corner. We treat them like family.
Your pooch will receive one-on-one care from our professional staff trained in cleaning up mounds of shedded hair and drool and puked-up grass or roadkill or whatever other bullshit your dog has gotten into. Our courteous and kind trainers strive to make your pets feel special and loved and weirdly entitled. Especially the little yappy lapdog ones.
Clarke & Co. is fully prepared for any special dietary requirements your dog might have, like gluten allergies, which we completely agree are real and not some trendy fad or gross control-issue-thingy. We can also handle dogs with severe hip dysplasia or diabetes or other ailments that make their lives probably not worth living.
We’ve been providing careful dog care for over twenty years at this location. That’s two decades of expertise and care and barking. Constant, ever-present barking. Two decades of that. Two decades. A third of my life. Time I could have been spending watching my son grow up.
Still feeling unsure about sending us your little bundle of displaced emotional baggage? Feel free to explore our facilities. You’ll see dozens of happy pooches taking up precious resources that could have been going towards helping Africa or Haiti. We’ve got a playroom with more square feet than the house my grandmother grew up in. And, our round-the-clock spa will meticulously groom your pups, almost as if we’re pretending they won’t go roll in deer shit at their first chance. Their very first chance.
So, come on by! Clarke & Co. Doggy Daycare: A home away from home for your horrible, barking shit machines.
Who was the first person to discover the way to a man's heart was through his stomach? Was it a Civil War doctor?
You guys, did you know that the scientific name for belly buttons is navels? It's pronounced just like the oranges... YOU GUYS?!!
How come nobody who likes frozen yogurt has superpowers? Is that a thing? Does frozen yogurt keep you from having superpowers?
Holy cow, has anyone ever noticed that Italy is shaped like a boot? IS THAT HOW WE INVENTED BOOTS?!!
So, Hobbits must have big ol' dingers right? I mean, proportionally big. But still... Right, you guys?
Ladies, did you know you have little baby seeds inside you right now? Super weird.
Who invented bananas? Because, good job!
Did you know that our first President looked exactly like the guy on our quarters? Do you think they planned that?
Why does everybody get so grumpy whenever I point out that they’re grumpy?
Heat kills bacteria right? Because, I just found a totally free bottle of Caesar salad dressing on the hot sidewalk!!!
Have you guys ever tried an avocado? It’s shaped like a pear, but it tastes just like guacamole! You guys!!!
Who made dinosaurs? Is there a separate Dinosaur God with His own bible and everything?
Why do banks make it so hard to get your money out of them when they’re closed? Ugh, I need to buy something!
How many baby carrots can I stick up my nose? TRICK QUESTION!! It’s two.
Which came first, Mexico or New Mexico? Because, I’ve been to New Mexico, and everyone there seems pretty old. While, everyone at Senior Frogs in Cancun seemed pretty drunk.
Where do babies get that great smell? Can you buy that at the carwash, or do I have to just keep rubbing myself with babies every morning?
Have you ever read the novelization of the movie Jingle All the Way? It sticks pretty close to the plot. Unlike those stupid Twilight books.
Did you know you can get pregnant just by having unprotected sex in a hottub?
How come you have to make lemonade with God’s lemons? Are you saying God’s lemons aren’t good enough for lemon meringue pie? That’s blasphemous!
Who’s your favorite Beatle? Mine’s that one guy with the song thingy.
Okay, bye, you guys!
I've always said that laughter is the best medicine. My friend Claire, who’s a Christian Scientist, says that prayer is the best medicine. When I heard that, I just laughed and laughed. And, all that laughter gave me a headache.
Which I tried to laugh away. But, it didn't work. The more I laughed, the worse my headache got. Something was wrong here. Very wrong.
I thought maybe I was laughing incorrectly. I tried tittering. I tried deep, booming guffaws. I tried chortles and chuckles and snorts and cackles. Nothing cured my headache. After several hours, it had gotten even worse.
My entire worldview crumbled around me. My so-called "medicine" had failed. I’d bought into western society's hubris that any disease can be cured through laughter---that people can somehow be "fixed." I scoffed. Which is, itself, a form of laughter. It didn't help my headache, though.
I began researching alternative forms of laughter. In Tibet, they have an advanced style of laugh called "The Inward Snortle." It involves an expulsion of air from your diaphragm paired with a nasal snicker of disbelief. Essentially, it's an extended hiccup. And, while I did experience a profound moment of universal clarity, my headache stuck around.
The nomadic Maasai people of Kenya have a form of laughter practiced not through the lungs or mouth, but rather through hopping in place. The idea is that the joy of laughing can be expressed not simply vocally but through the entire body. That made my headache hurt so much.
Eventually I died from this headache. Turns out I had an earwig colony growing in there.
Anyway… I got to Heaven, and I asked God what the best medicine was, and He said, “Did you try actual medicine?” And, I said that I hadn’t, and He gave me this look. You know the look.
Then, God said, “Couldn’t you hear all the earwigs I put inside your head scurrying around?”
And, up to this point, I had been pretty cool with this whole dying thing, but all of a sudden I was like, “Yeah, Dude! WHY’D YOU EVEN DO THAT?!”
God’s face fell a little, and He took a minute. Then He said kinda quietly, “I don’t know. Sometimes I can be kind of a dick.”
And, it’s true. Sometimes He’s kind of a dick.
I sneezed really hard the other night and astral projected. It was unexpected.
I was super weirded out. Because, one minute I was alone in my apartment, and the next I was staring at this devilishly handsome, bearded fat guy. And, I thought to myself, “That pudgy man has the most piercing blue eyes I’ve ever… Wait a minute! That’s me!”
My soul had detached itself from my corporeal being. I was hovering above my body, watching myself eat potato chip after potato chip. I screamed, “STOP EATING POTATO CHIPS! Can’t you see what you’ve done to yourself?” But, my body couldn’t hear me. I tried to shake myself, but you can’t touch anything when you astral project.
Eventually, my body fell asleep after two more bags of potato chips and some very unappealing masturbation. I weaseled my soul back inside through my left ear. Ever since then, I’ve been able to leave my body at will.
It's been a fast learning curve, and I wanted to share some tips on astral projection for beginners. Here goes:
1) I can’t help you astral project the first time, so don’t ask. I did it with a real solid sneeze, but each person does it his or her own way. I read on wikipedia that some guy left his body after eating 200 lime popsicles. Another lady astral projects whenever she sees photos of chinchillas. So, I guess, just go try random stuff.
2) Your soul is very flammable. Try not to drift into candle flames or near power lines. Also, your sense of smell is heightened when outside your body, so everything kinda smells like farts.
3) You can go anywhere when you astral project, but watching ex-wives shower is not worth it. Usually they seem happier than you remember them being, which is odd and off-putting.
4) Try handcuffing your body to a radiator or sink before you astral project. It really can’t be trusted with itself. Mine bought a bunch of collectible Hellboy figurines off eBay.
5) Other galaxies are boring. They are.
6) Never try to see if you can fit your soul into an empty Coke bottle, because that bottle might tip over accidentally and roll against the wall, trapping your body inside until your cat comes along and jostles the mouth of the bottle away from the wall like five days later. This is a very important one to remember.
7) Possessing other people’s bodies might sound fun, and it is. It’s super awesome. One fun thing to do is to make news reporters swear on air. I made Ann Curry say the C-word.
8) Roombas are not you friends.
9) Sometimes I like just hanging out with my body. We don’t really talk or anything, but it’s nice to have somebody to watch Netflix with. Also, sometimes I astral project to see if I have any spinach in my teeth.
10) Stay away from other souls that are astral projecting. Most are clingy weirdos. I met this one guy whose body is in a coma in Brussels. He made me call his sister and tell her he loved her and was sorry about the thing he said before the motorcycle accident. Drama.
11) Try to have fun with it.
Sooooo, that’s what I’ve learned so far about astral projection. I hope that helps some of you guys. Remember: Don’t float inside any empty Coca-Cola bottles. Even on a dare. It’s not worth the risk.
My to-do list for today:
- Wake up. Rub eyes for three minutes.
- Sing first two lines of a song on repeat in the shower.
- Conditioner beard.
- Eat toast while staring at nothing in particular.
- Watch weather report. Zone out. Rewind DVR and re-watch weather report.
- Be mad at a yuppie woman on the train for no reason.
- Greet receptionist with a resigned sigh. Hear her sigh as I walk away.
- Eat grapes. Think about the children's science show from my youth, during which Slim Goodbody said the bronchioli in our lungs looked like tiny bunches of grapes.
- Begin blog post about grapes. Delete it.
- Ice tea break.
- Stare out window. See cute dog.
- Try to remember LinkedIn password. Fail. Make note to apologize to friend for taking so long accepting her LinkedIn request.
- Probably work a little.
- Receive huffy email about something stupid.
- Ice tea break.
- Read celebrity gossip about an actor I didn't realize was a Republican. Be weirded out.
- Worry in general about skin cancer.
- Tweet something semi-clever.
- Check to see if it’s been retweeted.
- Check to see if it’s been retweeted.
- Throw away grape stem.
- Check to see if it’s been retweeted.
- Remember my LinkedIn password but then realize I tried that one already.
- Oh yeah, work a little more.
- Get back on train.
- Make eye contact with woman who glares at me, assuming I was looking at her cleavage, even though I stopped looking at her cleavage like three minutes ago.
- Make dinner.
- Look at nothing particular on the Internet for four hours.
- Go to sleep.
Hey, you guys. You may have noticed that I've been gone from the blog for a week. At least, I hope somebody noticed. Did anyone notice? A few of you? Hello?
Well, there's a simple explanation. It's not the fact that I was a teensy bit writer's blocked. I swear it's not that.
Also, it's not that I was serving as a witness in a hit-and-run trial that ended up taking forever, and the witness room was freezing, and I was stuck in there with three beat cops, whom I totally admire for their service and putting their lives on the line every day, but boy oh boy were these three a bunch of dundering Hercs.
And, it's not that I missed a week of writing because I was hustling trying to get my storytelling show, Real Characters, back on its feet. (Which I totally did, by the way!!! The next one is July 14th at McNally Jackson bookstore in SoHo, and the line-up is great. You should come out!)
The plain and simple truth is that I failed to update my blog, because I was kidnapped by a group of Bolivian drug lords, who snatched me off the sidewalk at Broadway and Canal and flew me back to Bolivia. I guess I happen to look exactly like their recently-murdered leader.
They were keeping his death a secret, and they needed me to pose as him for a week to root out the CIA mole in their paramilitary cartel. So, they dressed me in his fatigues, and I had to carry this real heavy machine gun everywhere, and it was so humid. Also, I had to Just For Men my blonde beard brown, which was sad.
Have you ever seen the movie Dave, where Kevin Kline poses as the President? Well, it was kinda like that, except Dave, itself, is a take-off on an older Richard Dreyfuss/Raul Julia movie called Moon Over Parador set in a South American dictatorship. I had never seen it, but the Bolivians were all about it. The whole time they were explaining the to me the posing-as-their-El-Jefe-thing, they kept referencing Moon Over Parador.
And, I'm like, "What's Moon Over Parador? You mean Dave?" And, they were all like, "WHAT?! You've never seen Moon Over Parador? But, it has Jonathan Winters and Sammie Davis Junior! You have to see Moon Over Parador!"
So, we Netflixed Moon Over Parador and had a movie night in one of the tents. And, honestly, it was a really solid movie. Dreyfuss chews the scenery a bit, but when does he not? I mean, that's part of the fun. And Raul Julia? God, he was great. Wasn’t he great?
That same night, some guy named Jorge tried to garrote me with piano wire in my sleep, and I thought we had our mole. But, the Bolivians said that that's just how Jorge is sometimes. He was drunk and thought I was his brother.
This is kind of a long story. Is this too long for you guys? Because, as it was happening, it seemed so exciting; but as I write it out, it seems kinda long. Anyway…
Turns out the mole was my mistress/nurse, Elena, which should have been obvious looking back on it. Man, she was a great dancer, though.
Once the Bolivians killed their mole, they were going to shoot me as well and toss my body into the small village they were burning down. But, I did this funny impression of Richard Dreyfuss’s impression of the Paradorian dictator. And, I guess it was good enough that instead of killing me, they just tied me up in a duffle bag and threw me into the river to drown.
But, I’ve told you guys about attending Magic Camp the summer after sixth grade, right? I haven’t? Oh, well that’s a great story I’ll tell you about later. Point being, I have escaped literally dozens of times from chained, underwater duffle bags. So no big deal.
I hitched a ride back to New York inside a crate of fair trade coffee. It’s a good thing the drug-sniffing dogs couldn’t smell me through all the coffee beans, because holy baloney I reek of drugs. And also the death of innocents.
So… long week, you guys. Sorry I didn’t update the blog more. I wasn’t getting very good wifi on my iPad in the camp. Plus, all the comedy I was writing was about Montezuma’s revenge, which is hacky and played out. They say, “write what you know,” but I deleted it.
Alright, well, more soon. Glad to be home.
- At Smith & 9th. Home soon. ILY.
- Whoops. That text was meant for the wife. Sorry.
- Especially you being my ex.
- Awkward. Sorry.
_ It’s fine. Forget it.
- You good?
- Sorry. Promised I wouldn’t text u anymore.
- Hope yur good.
- Last text. PROMISE.
_ Good. Be well.
- Home now. Told my wife we’d been texting tonite. She’s upset. Wants to talk to you.
- Tried to reason with her, but u know how women are. Ha ha.
- Srsly, she’s very upset with you.
- Don’t worry. Refused to give her your number. She locked herself in the bathroom.
- Yikes, right?
_ Robert, it’s been 3 years.
- I know I know I know. Sorry she got upset.
- Should blow over soon.
- U still doing art? Can’t find much on Google lately.
_ Robert ...
- Sure sure sure. Sorry.
- Just talked to Linda. Turns out she’s pregnant.
- So that’s big news, huh?
- Wow, a baby.
- Big news.
_ Congratulations to you both.
- She’s still locked in bathroom. Must be the hormones.
- Remember when we broke up ‘cause I wanted kids & you didn’t? That seems so weird now.
_ Go talk to your wife, Robb.
- You’re right. Talking with Linda thru the door now.
- She seems better. Stressed about work/maternity leave.
- Yeah so…
- You still with that guy? The actor?
- Bill? Brad? He seemed weirdly tall for you.
- Linda’s coming out now. Should probably stop texting.
_ Yes. Do that.
- Wanna grab coffee sometime? Catch up on stuff? I could bounce some baby names off you, ha ha.
- No response?
- Is yur phone still on?
- Okay, well, hope your good.
- Remember to update Facebook when you have new photos of your art. Or you. Or whatever.
- Your bike tour looked fun btw.
- Oh, and I guess the name is going to be Oliver. Linda’s grandfather’s name.
- OK, well, goodnight. Thanks for texting.
Sometime last year, I was standing on the toilet seat when I fell and hit my head. That's when I came up with the idea for a pepperoni and fennel sandwich. It was while eating that very same sandwich that I came up with the idea for a time travel machine.
I made it from bits and bobs around the house, mostly scraps from my failed anti-gravity attempts. The metal colander on top is just for decoration.
I tested out the time machine on my dog, Banjo, whom I later saw in the background of an old Marx Brothers movie. I took that as a positive test result. Banjo seemed happy.
The first thing I did was go back in time to my sophomore year of high school. I thought I'd learn guitar and use my knowledge of today's music scene to become a famous indie rocker. I played rudimentary versions of Arcade Fire and TV on the Radio at my school's talent show, and it totally worked!
My girlfriend's hotter friend finally took notice of me. A VHS tape of the talent show made its way to the record labels (thanks, Mom!), and I got signed. I quickly became famous by recording covers of songs that hadn't been written yet. Who would have guessed people in the mid-90s would enjoy LCD Soundsystem so much?
I became a rock star and a fashion plate. I knew the trend of men wearing scarves was coming up eventually; so I went ahead and brought it back early. Also, I made everybody skip the bellbottom resurgence and go directly to boot cut jeans. You're welcome.
But, it didn't last. Eventually, I ran out of groundbreaking new work to steal. All I had left was some Kanye stuff, and let's be honest---I can't pull off bravado.
I ended up becoming kind of a joke. Well, not a joke, but... when people bought my album on Amazon, it suggested they might also like the Red Hot Chili Peppers. That’s when I knew something had gone terribly, terribly wrong.
So, I came back to the present and tried again.
I decided this time to go back to the Middle Ages and weasel my way into becoming a famous inventor. I brought my iPod with me and a digital alarm clock and whatever else fit in my pockets. I figured I could reverse engineer most of that stuff once I got there. I had managed to build my own time machine for cripe's sake!
At first, the king thought I was an evil sorcerer, because I happened to arrive during a solar eclipse. Also, I had told some maidens I was an evil sorcerer to try to impress them. But, then he ended up being a big fan of Angry Birds, and things were cool between us.
Anyhoo, I hadn't really planned ahead for my electrical needs. I'd brought back diagrams for a generator, but I forgot that the medieval times didn't have gasoline. FYI, lamp oil is a quick way to destroy a blacksmith-made generator.
When the Kindle conked out halfway through the King's reading of The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, I high tailed it out of there.
What followed was a series of wacky misadventures. I don't remember much of it, because I messed up the time continuum pretty bad. Essentially, if you think of time as a piece of string, I wadded it up and tied a bunch of knots in it. I can't fully explain the butterfly effect, but somehow we ended up with giant killer butterflies for a while.
Now, because of my self-admitted bumbling goofishness, the present is overrun by anthropomorphic mole people. And, when I say the following I don't mean to come across as a specist: but, they are damn dirty. They are! They are covered in dirt.
So, I'm trying to go back to the past to put stuff right. And, if I become famous or beloved in the process, so be it. That's the price I pay for caring.
My first step is to go back and un-kill Hitler and try out a few different ways of re-killing. Mix and match, you know? Time travel is more of an art that a science.
Well, wish me luck.