Monthly Archives: March 2009

microscopic is tinier than miniscule


Maybe other great minds have already answered this question, but I’m looking for something specific: the perfect synonym. I should go a little further and say I’m looking for the perfect adjective synonym, since you can always say words like “car” and “automobile” are synonyms, but there are always infinitesimal differences of meaning between, say, “hot”, “scalding”, “boiling”, “stifling”, and “blistering”.

For instance, in ascending order of intensity, I’d proffer the following list for “big”:










So I put to you, fair readers, what descriptive word in English can be perfectly replaced by another word, with absolutely no alteration of meaning?

they have a fight, triangle wins


If you haven’t had them yet, never fear, my fellow Americans, the warm days are coming. The curt, ungrateful, white-shallow sun is being replaced by the endless afternoon, and even the evenings are one more button loose from the collarbone. Those of you in New England… I sit in the middle of the California desert tonight, and we are blowing a hot mass of oxygen your way.

It’s not Breast Liberation Day (BLD) yet, not even in Santa Monica, but I happen to know you ladies are contemplating it. Nortons cooped up in strata upon strata of cloth will be soon be released into the wild, and the men around you will not respond with leering, or lascivious sexism, but with the joyous innocence of children thanking a benevolent God for His infinite Riches. Your breasts will remind us, in our deepest forefather DNA, that we managed to get through the winter with our stored meat intact.

Prince wrote a song called “Sometimes in Snows in April”, but the fact is, “It Always Snows in April”. There are always setbacks, sure, sure. The pagan demons of harsh ice never let their grip go without one last claw to the face, but that’s all they’ve got. Except for 1816, they’ve lost every year.

I am going to open up a nice scotch this week, sit on the porch swing and wait for the weekend games. The ceiling fan will be on HIGH and the hummingbird feeders are full.

what I assume you shall assume


Dear Diary,

Today was a Thursday. That used to mean lots of parties when I was at the University of North Carolina, but now it means one more day of child care before the weekend. I’m getting more and more used to it, but the concept of the vast weekend hours stretching out before us is still a little scary. In reality, we have lots of fun and Lucy is an absolute dream, but by Sunday night we are all pretty tired.

I see all these commercials about TGIF and how Wednesday is “hump day” and how Garfield hates Mondays and loves lasagna, but I gotta tell ya, Diary, we’re kinda living that backwards right now.

Speaking of which, I’ve had a few career things come up, things here in the Hollywood business that would otherwise be fantastic news… but simply scare me. I’m not sure if I want that much responsibility. I have grown and cultivated my little island here, and now I’m not sure if our Dream Job is even in my dreams anymore.

Oh Diary… I keep thinking about that paragraph I have pinned to the wall upstairs, about men’s waning desire to succeed and their productivity going way down after the birth of their first child. The article explains that the costs of competition start dwarfing the benefits of aggressive behavior, but couldn’t the explanation be a little simpler?

Maybe men stop trying so hard after they get into their late thirties because the game itself stops having meaning. By then, they have seen success, maybe even drunk from its chalice a few times, and found it lacked a certain profundity. Perhaps men finally have the spiritual maturity to admit they don’t really want what they’ve been after, and the courage to be okay with the ramifications of something so explosive.

Sure, I get it, we still need to put food on the table, to pay rent, to provide, but isn’t there a certain relief in downgrading your quest a little? It throws open the shades, crystallizes the opportunity to be a much more interesting person. Especially as an artist (if I may use that word, Diary), I think it’s exhausting to go your whole adult life without any separation between What You Do and Who You Are.

And despite all this, I still feel the pangs of wanting immense success, to be lauded with my wife as saviours of the genre, to return home conquerors. Very well then – like Whitman said – I contradict myself. And Whitman wrote that in his late thirties.

I don’t know. Perhaps the existential maw is like the tides at the Bay of Fundy, or that quicksand that opened up when you played “Pitfall” – at regular intervals, you simply have to grapple with meaninglessness, before moving on to ecstasy.

Oh, and today I pruned the orange tree and cleaned off those lawn chairs that were getting yucky. I also moved the next door neighbor’s plant over a few feet so it stops blocking all the light. I think that’s about it, Diary. Oh, and we had pasta with pink vodka sauce for dinner.

smile and say camembert


Oh, why do I take pictures? Someone please tell me?


discovered at LAX – apparently you can “reseal” water bottles with the included “cap”


sign o’ times; coming out of a meeting, I stuck my head inside Keller Williams Westside Realty and Escrow and Mortgage – not a single human there


found suppositories package in medicine cabinet; I know it’s technically correct, but that warning sounds a little… I dunno, graphic?


shirt seen in Santa Monica; I got this same flannel shirt at Walmart in 1992 for $8, had forty-five just like it, now selling for $189.00


Lucy’s beginning to read public signage!

bentornata, kotter


Hi. Um, hey, so, can you excuse me? My wife just got back from ten days in Italy.

[insert studio audience “awwwwww”, or bassline from porn movie here]

keg of populist ire on tap


Frankly, I’m finding all this rage and death threats directed at the AIG honchos to be a little baffling. When I heard what the insurance giant was doing with taxpayer money, sure, I had my moment of seeing red, but I almost immediately sighed “oh well”. That’s because I adopted a way of thinking that I recommend to anyone out there who wishes to cling to the last of their stomach lining.

First off, all of you have to rent, buy or download The Corporation, a documentary made in 2004 about, well, the nature of American corporations. No matter what your ideological bent, I’d love to hear what you think – I know it has saved me years of rending my garments and cursing at the sky, because I finally GET IT.

Put simply, American corporations have almost all the same rights as an American citizen. This is thanks to two things: an 1886 Supreme Court ruling on railroads, and a warped take on our 14th Amendment. Thus we get the concept of “corporate personhood”.

Except that large corporations, if they were to be judged as humans, are by their very nature sociopaths. It’s a fascinating argument, one the documentary does an excellent job illuminating, but what it has done for me is invaluable: it has eradicated any sense of personal wrath I might feel about a giant company. In other words, there is nothing they can do that will ever surprise me again.

And thus it is so with AIG… do you feel anger when you hear what they did with the money? Pardon me for asking, but… why? Everyone knew full well it was going to be a carnie’s shell game. Same goes for all the banks paying outrageous bonuses, the golden commodes and the private jets. Do you hold sociopaths to the same standard of accountability?

In AIG’s case, you just gave $170 billion to a giant ape, and then you were surprised he threw his feces at your face. Sure, we could take the money away, but here’s the catch: that giant ape is riding a unicycle that is powering the nation’s economy. If he falls off the unicycle, then America’s economy basically shuts down, and the Dow goes into the 3000s.

So you know what you’re going to do? Let the giant ape keep the $170 billion, get hit with his feces, and play nice-nice until we get out of this mess. Sure, we can show outrage, and politicans can make grand, impotent gestures, but why bother? IT’S AN APE.

Whether it be a primate or a sociopath, the real question is this: how did we let one company become so crucially unexpendable that our economy teeters on its very existence? I don’t know, I write scripts for a living. But I sure as hell don’t let it drag me into despair anymore. I also don’t ask my mini Australian Shepherd to drive.


don’t cry for me archdale NC



“Somebody said that we’re not in President Obama’s Final Four, and… the economy is something that he should focus on, probably more than the brackets.” – Koach K

WOW. Just when you think you’ve heard all you can hear from Koach K’s festering Christ complex, he broadsides you with another doozy like this. It would have been the perfect time for a little joke, or even a “heck, we’ll do our best” moment that might fire up his fan base and elicit a soupcon of sympathy from even the committed Dook-haters, but that would require a momentary relaxation of his draconian ego.

Does Koach K really believe the economy might suffer because President Obama spent a few minutes talking basketball with ESPN? No wonder Dook has such a PR problem; K places zero value on the appearance of being human. By filling out his brackets, Obama actually helps sell his case about the economy and most other items on his agenda, because he is participating in the same awesome ritual the rest of us are – making our President seem like a decent guy (which is something Koach ought to look into). Instead K showed – again – that his personality is stuck on one setting: cock.

I mean, I freely admit to having the “cock” setting on my own personality, as well as many others like “unfathomable snob”, “sarcastic fuck-all” and “pretentious smartyshirts”, but at least I show a little range. Only a driven narcissist like Koach K could perform the mental gymnastics required to make Obama’s brackets about him.

You know what, Koach? You and your Republican friends can eat it. I loath UTexas and Rick Barnes, but you just made me say it: hook ’em, horns!

i got your radford highlander right here


Um, hi. Can you tell I’m doing the single-parent thing this week? Is my lack of trenchant observations giving it away? Are you coming here expecting spittle-fueled rants or charming observations about pop culture and walking away feeling a little… unsatisfied?

I just need a little more sleep and I’ll be back in action. In the meantime, please post a recipe you love, preferably something from your family.

And you have until 12pm noon EST to get your brackets done. If you want to still be in our burgeoning pool, please comment below before 10am EST!

Oh, and I have news for both Tim and Kate: the longest word you can type with just your left hand is wedawsxwsdqwsxasxwefdaqsxasx

I’d like to ask, however, what your other hand is supposed to be doing.


this is a baobab tree

coolidge liked the vaseline


Great turnout, folks – at this rate, we’ll have to have second and third place prizes, so if you want to be in the NCAA tournament pool, keep leaving your comments here (with a real address in the “email” field) and you’ll get the invite. Do it by midnight tonight, please!

In the meantime, your random bits of conversation have reminded me of some bizarre, irrelevant factoids that I can’t seem to forget. I’ll give you my top three, and if you have any, please share ’em, wontchya?

1. Opening your refrigerator door costs 35 cents in energy. Maybe that’s back with older fridges, but it could really weigh on your conscience when you’re looking for Miracle Whip

2. The moon is moving 1 1/2 inches away from us every year, and that makes me sad

3. In Manhattan, you are never more than nine feet from a rat