Sunday, April 28th, 2013


Many folks

Down in New York

Liked soda a lot…

 But the Grinch

 Who was Mayor

 Did NOT!


The Grinch hated soda! All kinds of flavors

 Now please don’t ask why.  Looked at all with disfavor!

It could be his palate and tastes were urbane

It could be perhaps that he just drank champagne.

 But I think the most likely reason of all

Was because, as a man well, the Mayor was small.




Whatever the reason,

His height or his wealth

He was too-too concerned with everyone’s health.

Making speeches and statements, he tried best he could

 To convince New Yorkers this was for their own good.

No more soda or smoking or transfats or fun.  

An era of free choice and freedom was done.


“But they’re drinking their sodas,” he snarled with a sneer

They won’t have a chance to at this time next year!

If it’s seventeen ounces of Fanta or Pepsi

They’ll have to be happy with unsweetened Nestea.




Come next year, he knew…

He would have his own way

Not over cranberry juice or OJ

Nor coffee nor liquor nor hot NesCafe

But one day he would!  HAVE HIS WAY!  HAVE HIS WAY!



Why, look at the streets where the traffic once flourished,

There are bikes!  There are bikes!

There are bikes!





They would ride them in bike lanes painted brand-new!

They would ride them on sidewalks, slam into you!



They’d do something

He liked most of all

They’d ride them through all those pedestrian malls!


They’d ride them down Lexington, up Park Avenue

They’d ride where they wanted with no thought of you!


 They’d ride!  And they’d ride!


 Through red lights, on sidewalks, against STOP! Signs too! 

And the Grinch who was Mayor, he hadn’t a clue

“But they’ll be better off just as soon as I’m through”

Said the Grinch who was Mayor who knew…

                                                            …thought HE!



For he had an idea!


A brilliant idea!



 “I know just what to do!” he laughed to himself

Quite a huge idea from one tall as an elf!

“They whine and complain, it’s all so hard to take.

How will they respond when l ban chocolate cake?”


“I will ban all the chocolate

I know that I can!

Chocolate truffles and soufflés, cashews and pecans,

But I won’t stop at that,”

The short mayor said

“I’ll ban brownies and cookies and donuts and bread.”


Then he called Janette Sudik-Khan, Transportation head,

And said “Stop riding your bike, we’ve got work ahead!


He called his daughter

The equestrian one

And said, “Hold your horses!

There’s much to be done!”

“But, Daddy, dear Daddy,

“I don’t mean to whine,

 But my schedule is filled

With all things equine.”

Then I’ll have to rely on one person — that’s me!

And not leave in the hands of petit-bourgoursie

 I will ban all these sweets by Mayoral Decree!


There’ll be no chocolate squares or chocolate parfaits

No more Three Musketeers, nary one Milky Way!

Take all Hershey Kisses and kiss them adieu

So long, Snickers Bars, Almond Joys, Milk Duds too!

And premium chocolates, they haven’t a chance

Don’t care if they’re imported from  Belgium or France

And those dreadful strawberries dipped in chocolate

And those pretzels and raisins and rest of that rot!



And that white chocolate too, ‘cause you can’t fool the Mayor

Small like Paul Simon but still I’m a playa!

Chocolate Santas! Chanukah coins! Easter bunnies too!

Chocolate milk, chocolate pudding! Chocolate fondue!

No more Rocky Road ice cream or mint chocolate chip

I just love a benevolent dictatorship!

My powers are limitless in the Big Apple

And soon all you’ll be drinking is Diet Peach Snapple

I love making unilateral moves in this town

There’ll be no more chocolate,  I’ll ban all foods brown!

That’s right!  I will do it!  Don’t believe me?  Just you wait!

Remember Alexander? Well,  I’m Bloomberg the Great!

 No more hamburger, roast beef or baked potatoes!

No brown gravy, no mushrooms, no more Cheerios!

You’ll never eat brown rice or ribs or whole oats!

Say bye-bye to pumpernickel bread and groats!

 “But why, Mayor Bloomberg, do something so silly?”

 Asked Zooey and Chloe and Jacob and Billy,

 “Why?” asked their parents, “our kids are entitled

 “It’s their wants and desires that are key, that are vital!”

 We loved you Mike Bloomberg, our first three-term mayor

 We knew you’d protect us and the ozone layer

 You wear crewneck sweaters in Grade A cashmere

And agreed to be Mayor for one buck a year!

Why must you tell us what is good and what’s not?

Note:  that arrogant manner doesn’t help you a lot.

We sense that you come to us with no ill intent

Have your aides pointed out your bad Spanish accent?


What’s that noise? groused the Mayor I can’t help but hear

So he stopped.  And put his small hand to his small ear.

“I can see a crowd forming,” the Mayor remarked

“Hope it’s not filthy hipsters from Zucotti Park!”

 Every person in New York, the rich and the poor

Were there to say, “Enough, Mike!  Please! No more!

Some were eating spelt bread, some were drinking blue juice

Mayor Bloomberg’s “suggestions” were being refused!

 You can deal with the unions, the teachers and cops

Attend Broadway openings, the hits and the flops

Bring commerce to New York, more jobs and more tourists


And on your own time you can save the rain forest

The Mayor just grimaced, pressed his face to the pane.

Was perplexed, so confused: who are they to complain?

 I only wanted what was best for them all

Have you seen what I’ve done with pedestrian malls?

 And what happened then?

Well, the Mayor just grumbled, then smiled to himself,

These New Yorkers don’t know what is good for themselves

They need me, they know it, I don’t mean to annoy

I like being in charge, what’s not to enjoy?


Take back your brown food, have a chocolate bar

 Perhaps you are right and I’ve gone way too far

 No more control freak, do whatever you want,

 It’s time for Mike Bloomberg to be nonchalant

 I will live and let live and try not to judge

 I won’t be bitter, I won’t hold a grudge

 You can drink all your sweet drinks and eat chocolate fudge!

 And with that…


 The Grinch who was Mayor took off for D.C.

 With only four years, much to do, much to see

 “Time to change my demeanor, never meant to be mean”

 “I can compromise surely, find the “in between”

Bloomberg/Sudik-Khan in 2016!


I can ban DuPont Circle, maybe make it a square

 Close the Capital Steps, institute BloombergCare

 Turn the National Mall to a pedestrian space

 Give the Lincoln Memorial a handsomer face


Get those pandas from China to try and slim down

 Move the White House to more desirable Georgetown

 Add bike lanes to the Beltway, maybe have a marathon

 Build a Mike Bloomberg wing at the Smithsonian


I will have so many things to change and see to

 I just love politics – there’s soooooo much to do!



Friday, March 22nd, 2013

Dear New York Mayor Shorty-Pants,


Well, cranky, obstinate I-know-what’s-better-for-you-than-you-do Michael Bloomberg – there’s only one word I can think of that expresses how I (and millions more) feel about the ban on your soda ban – na na na na na. I know how important control is for you short men.  And, for a while there, it looked like you were winning the battle.   I know you hate losing and that you’ll challenge the brilliant and fair-minded decision of the judge who overturned your arbitrary I-can-so-I-will brand of law.  But for now you are just going to have to just cry into your empty Big Gulp cup.



Well, cranky, obstinate I-know-what’s-better-for-you-than-you-do Michael Bloomberg – there’s only one word I can think of that expresses how I (and millions more) feel about the ban on your soda ban – na na na na na. I know how important control is for you short men.  And, for a while there, it looked like you were winning the battle.   I know you hate losing and that you’ll challenge the brilliant and fair-minded decision of the judge who overturned your arbitrary I-can-so-I-will brand of law.  But for now you are just going to have to just cry into your empty Big Gulp cup.


No, Mike – I don’t drink sweet soda or Yoo-Hoo or sweet tea or Mountain Dew or Fanta Grape.  Or Orange.  It’s just when someone tells me, a mature woman, what I may and may not do, I have a problem.  I already had a mommy and daddy, I didn’t like it when they told me what to do and I was in their will.  So why would I listen to you?   You weren’t a bad mayor the first two terms.  But then someone in your administration apparently slipped Quaaludes into the City Council coffee urn, and here we are.  There’s a reason it’s called a “Napoleonic Complex.”


Cherry-picking what people can and can’t do takes us down a slippery slope.  Maybe I don’t want to pay the healthcare bill of drunks with corroded livers.  Why don’t you outlaw booze?  Ooops – 1920 through 1933.  What lesson can we take from this?  Be it eating cans of Crisco


or drinking 4,000 bottles of Jim Beam – same answer you gave your parents when you were 12 and they asked, “Why don’t you get a haircut?” “It’s a free country!”


Come December this year, it’s over for you so, why not just chill for the next few months?  Or — you could double-down on being Alpha Daddy Mayor.  Dilemma – nine months and so many things to ban.  Allow me to help by consolidating a “To Do” list for you.  This way, you can continue to increase your carbon footprint by jetting down to Bermuda every weekend…



STREET FAIRS –  A health hazard that assaults each of my five senses from May through October every year.  From the YUPPIE parents who have no problem crashing their double-stroller into my ankle as they tell their captive-audience twin toddlers, “Look Abigail and Aiden! This is cobblestone.  Cobblestone is derived from the old English word ‘cob,’ and is a generic for any stone having dimensions between 2.5–10 inches…” (just wait till those kids learn how to say, “Shut the fuck up, Mom and Dad!”), to the sticky-smelling pina coladas, from people buying down-alternative pillows and tube socks in the middle of the gutter to those same Peruvian ponchos that seem to travel from fair to fair, like the clothing equivalent of funnel cakes.

What if a car careens into the crowd?  What if a funnel-cake fryer tips over and the hot oil spills on someone?  What if it rains and someone gets a cold?  I’m afraid I’ll have to pay for their healthcare. Nope.  Sorry. Street fairs – out.


JELLO MOLDS A Marlboro Light or that quivering lime goo with fruit somehow magically suspended in it?  Got a match?


PAYARD’S FRENCH BAKERY, MAISON KAYSER AND OTHER PATISSERIES YOU MIGHT LIKE TO INDULGE IN – Maybe some fat wealthy people should stop stuffing their faces with macarons and Napoleons.  And even if they’re not fat, doesn’t mean their cholesterol isn’t 315.  Their money could be in tax shelters and I might have to pay for their insulin.  Au revoir, expensive baked goods.  You’re no healthier than a Twinkie, just less uniform and tres more expensive.



FRUIT/VEGETABLE CARTS – Oh, an avocado is sooooo much more healthy than a muffin?   Really?  I’m thinking I’m healthier eating a gallon of hermetically sealed Kozy Shack Rice Pudding than grapes handled by some green market vendor, whose nails are so filthy it looks like he actually planted and picked the fruit himself.  He picked something.  That I’m sure of.


YOUR HORRENDOUS SPANISH ACCENT – It hurts my ears as well as the pride of all of my Latino friends. “Beeeewennosss Diazzzz, citizens de Nuweeeyva Yorkayyy!.  I’d rather not know that the subways and schools are closed because of a blizzard than hear your monotone “Toedoz loews aysquealas y el subwayo aystanies serahdoz hoy today.”    Por favor, Senor Mayorcallate!  Su acento español está prohibido y mis oídos interno está sangrando!



THE HAMPTONS – I know.  Technically, you’re not Mayor of the Hamptons, but in your head, you and not James Cameron, is really The King of the World and the world, as you know, includes Amagansett and Quogue.  Shops named “Blue and Cream,” and “Crazy Monkey” are indulgent and nauseating.  The Hampton Jitney makes a right-hand turn from the left lane on 40th and Lex, and emits enough carbon monoxide to suck the oxygen supply out of Yankee Stadium.  The fillers and “refreshers” used by every woman over the age of 23 can’t be good for the environment.  75-year-old men, no matter how rich they are, should not be playing tennis.

Why should I pay for an angiogram and triple bypass because an old guy forgot to breathe while volleying?   Hamptons.  Beach it.



METS FANSFor no other reason than they have that human baseball-with-arms-and-legs Mr. Met mascot, the New York Mets should follow their predecessors, The Brooklyn Dodgers, and move to Los Angeles.


EQUESTRIAN AS REAL JOB   This isn’t England in the 14th century.  There are no squires or millers or friars or knights.  There’s no Duchy of Bloomberg, unless the island of Bermuda counts.  When the unemployment rate in the country has hovered at about 8% the past five years, and your idea of “solution” is having architects crank out blueprints for apartments the size of the Polly Pocket Castle for none of your relatives to live in, your daughter Georgina is hereby banned from identifying herself as an equestrian at cocktail parties, in online dating services, on job applications.  Even Christopher Reeve didn’t have enough money to pay for his medical bills and he was SUPERMAN, for god’s sake.  When “equestrians” break bones and spinal columns, I’m afraid I’ll have to pay.  And I’d rather not.



EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL  – I know. A Mediterranean diet is supposed to be healthy.  But we’re talking about people who can’t control themselves, people who might not be satisfied with, let’s say, 16 ounces of extra virgin olive oil.  What if some New Yorker wants to walk into Food Emporium, buy 25 ounces of Colavita Olive Oil and half a gallon of whole milk and blend up an EVOO Milk Shake?   That’s 8,600 calories for the oil, 9,000 for the milk.  Likely?  Maybe not.  But if we can save even one life, we are heroes, are we not?



DUANE READE DRUG STORES There are more Duane Reade drugstores in New York than there are parking meters.  Ooops – you banned those too…  There are so many, it makes me dizzy.  Whatever goes out of business, it’s replaced by a Duane Reade drugstore.  They’re reproduced faster than kids in that Duggar family on TLC.  It’s like Mickey Mouse in “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.”  They sell prescription drugs. They also sell Cheez Balls.  They sell aspirin and Witch Hazel and Band Aids.  They also sell French Onion (artificially flavored) Sun Chips.  They sell gauze and rubbing alcohol.  They also sell Healthy Choice Salisbury Steak.   When the same store sells both that shampoo/conditioner that comes in one bottle and  “Good and Delish Penne Alla Vodka with Grilled Chicken,” both those with dirty hair and those who aren’t in the mood for salmonella any time soon should be wary.

You’ll have to close down just about everything in these stores except the pharmacy and the aisle that sells cotton balls.
















Thursday, February 28th, 2013

You’ve bought your “Official Guide to New York City,” or your insider-like “Unofficial Guide to New York City.”  You’ve downloaded subway apps and Zagat apps and TKTS. apps.  You’ve checked the weather, packed appropriately.  Now, as your plane safely descends into LaGuardia or JFK, it might be wise to review the following tips – they will help you to better navigate our fair city and, most importantly, not be just one more thing that annoys us….



I know you think they are, because I see you at the theatre dressed like you’re going to a hoedown.  Unless you’re a member of the Cosa Nostra, (which, as a native New Yorker, I know doesn’t exist and is just a myth created by Hollywood), the running suit is not a good look on the streets of this city and a sure sign that you are a tourist.  Or a sign that you’re a “button man” for the mob, if the mob existed, which it doesn’t though they do sell a disproportionate number of running suits in Staten Island, which is a part of New York City that you probably won’t have time, (or are too scared), to visit…



Yes, it is one of the five boroughs of New York City.  So are Queens and the Bronx and Staten Island.  But those other three boroughs don’t have an identity crisis.  Each is proud of what it is.  Period.  Brooklyn, on the other hand, a perfectly fine piece of land, has a problem because it sees itself as the  “also-ran,” (but hipper), and its residents find that hard to swallow.  Brooklyn is the place that hipsters and Yuppies move to when they can’t afford Manhattan and then the rationalization begins because they refuse to let reality set in.

1:  I get twice the space for half the rent!

2.  There’s a whole other vibe once you get out of Manhattan!

3.  I have an outdoor space!

4.  You can’t buy the view from the Brooklyn Heights Promenade!

5.  So much less pretentious than the city!

6.  It’s no “neigborhoody!”

7. We have our own baseball team.

8.  PS 321 is the best-kept secret in town! (No it’s not, nor is it a “free Dalton”).

And then the Manhattan bashing really begins when, in fact, if you told any of these ex-pats there’s an apartment in “the city” that they can afford, they’d be back here so fast, they’d forget to pack their kids.

Barclay’s Center does not = Madison Square Garden

Prospect Park does not = Central Park

Cobble Hill does not = Murray Hill

DUMBO = stupid acronym

The Brooklyn Dodgers left for a reason.

There’s no such thing as a “Brooklyn” sirloin.

Coney Island looks better on film than it does in person.

No one cares where ‘Sophie’s Choice’ was filmed.

Lena Dunham wants you to think that’s where she comes from.  But she’s really a rich girl from SoHo.

So don’t buy the Brooklyn t-shirt – no one at home will care, unless they came from Brooklyn, which they’ve successfully managed to leave. So they will care even less.



Carrie Bradshaw, the pretentious, adorkably annoying Fashionista fictional “Sex In the City” character, hails from Connecticut.  Sarah Jessica Parker is from Ohio.  Real native New Yorkers have yet to discover a way to make $300 writing a sex column and live on Madison Avenue and frequently buy shoes that cost more than a washer/dryer, with $18.50 left over for a Chicken Caesar Wrap at Dean and DeLuca.

Real New Yorkers refer to their drug dealers, not their boyfriends, as “Mr. Big.”  Whenever you feel that either Carrie Bradshaw or Sarah Jessica Parker is “so real, it’s like we’re friends,” remember that your real friends don’t hold Presidential fund-raisers at $40,000 a plate

or sell their New York City brownstones for $25,000,000.”  Real New Yorkers don’t complain about the expansion of a university because it will spoil their view.

Real New Yorkers are happy to have a view.  Or an apartment they can afford, for that matter.  Fo shizzle.



Sometimes they don’t mean to, (though I might, particularly if you’re an adult woman wearing a crewneck sweatshirt adorned with kittens or eagles).   Other times, their intentions are pure but, living in NYC, they’ve lost their ability to say, “I don’t know.”  They may look the other way when they see a homeless person sleeping on a subway grating, and will certainly cross the street to avoid those Greenpeace freakazoids. But the second they hear, “Do you know how I get to….?” they’re in, even if they moved here last week.  Smile, nod politely, and then refer to the appropriate app.   And keep a special ear out for anyone who advises, “Grand Central Station?  It’s not more than two kilometers from…” or “Do you see that signpost?  Just make a right at the roundabout and…” They are as authentically New York as – well – Carrie Bradshaw.



First, those little air fresheners, either cardboard and hanging from the rear view mirror, or Lucite aqua or pink tassled bottles glued to the meter box, are not tricks.  They are olfactory offenses that make the back of the cab smell like cloves or Pine-Sol. Or underarms that haven’t been washed since VE Day.

Cab driver tricks range from getting you from Greenwich Village to Gramercy Park through East Hampton, not being able to change a twenty when that’s all you have and the fare is $11, to blasting whichever type of music you find most horrific, until your inner ear bleeds. Or maybe you like Sitar music…



$25????   And you don’t even get to gnaw off and take home a piece of a Renoir?  The sign may say that it’s just a “suggested” price of admission, but if you don’t pay it, the cashiers and anyone standing within 50 feet will look at you as though you’re one of “The Box Car Children.”   Real New Yorkers don’t give a shit.  Many of us remember the days when all museums were free and feel like we’re being overly-generous throwing a couple of bucks and a broken button at the cashier who’s rich, bored and working for free. Another key tip, tourists – please don’t refer to the Museum of Modern Art as “MOMA”.  It is really offensive, like you’re BFFs with the museum.  And, MOMA, we should really have a talk about my having to contribute anything to look at those monochromatic black squares you call “paintings” or, even worse, “art.”


A revival of “Death of a Salesman” or a new David Mamet play?  Absolutely.  Mamma Mia! or Spiderman: Bring on the Dark?  Not so much…  Look around the theatre.  Is everyone there dressed like you?  Plaid shorts?  Dockers?  Teva sandals and white sports socks? In New York City, “I saw CATS 19 times!” isn’t an accomplishment – it’s a disorder.



There is no place that shirt works.  Back home, your neighbors are thinking, “What a show-off!” and, in New York City, we’re thinking, “What a schmuck.”



Yes, it’s the Chrysler Building.  The same one that’s been there since 1930.  The same one in the movie, “Annie.”  The same one the Silver Surfer flew through. You’re not Ansel Adams.  You’re not even Nigel Barker.  Take out your Nikon Coolpix, snap and keep it moving.  Surely there’s a bag of sugar-laden cashews or five-dollar Pashmina shawl calling your name on the next corner.



The only people sitting there are other tourists.  What could you possibly have to do besides gawk at one another.  “Wow – this city really is big!”  “It looks just like the movies.  Well, except for all the brown people…”  “We were at the top of the Empire State Building today – you know – where Tom Hanks met Meg Ryan!”  “I thought there’d be more Jews here…”  Would you sit on a chaise lounge in the middle of Main Street in your one-traffic-light town?  Maybe I should bring one of those canvas fold-up chairs they sell at Home Depot and set it up on the streets where you live.  And just stare at you and your families.  Stop!  We are not an attraction!  Do we amuse you?  Are we here for your amusement?  Take the ferry and go to the Statue of Liberty.  Or set up your chairs on the lawn of Gracie Mansion.  Not like anyone lives there anyway.  Just don’t bring your own soft drinks.


Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

Dear John Galliano, former fashion designer and current anti-Semite,

I’m writing because I saw the photo of you on the front page of the New York Post and couldn’t help but notice your most recent

fashion choice .


Instead of dressing, as you’d say in your former business, more “on-trend,” you – drunk genius that you are – decided to

go “off-trend,” into the historical and religious world of the Hasidic Jew.  Oh – I know – the Jewish community, sensitive souls that we are

– are up n arms, thinking that, once again, you are displaying just un peu of anti-Semitism by picking an outfit resembling that of a

Hasidic Jew.   Of course it wasn’t, for the second time in about a year that you were making  an “I Don’t Heart Jews” statement.   I’m sure

that you just rolled out of bed, grabbed whatever was clean – your Hasidic hat, underneath, I’m certain, was one of your many yarmulkes,

those trousers you love stuffing into your long socks, and, of course, one of your several Hasidic black frock coats.


And I know, John, that unless you blow dry that fabulous frayed, split-ended skanky hair of yours, it just naturally

forms long ringlets. You know – like peyos, only not, because you would never mock the Jewish people.    You could try to blame

it on the booze.  It seemed to work last time, particularly with Whoopi Goldberg, who’d said she’d have been upset with

your “I love Hitler!  Your mothers and fucking forefathers would have been fucking gassed!” rant in Paris last

year if you hadn’t been drinking.  Thanks, Whoopi.  Your time would be better spent growing eye-brows.  But I digress…


Another of your defenders, costume designer Patricia Field, is a woman whose sense of  humor seems to be about as

discombobulated as her sense of fashion.


That’s right – I said it.  The Emperor has Skanky Clothes.


Here’s how it happened, I imagine.  In screenplay format…




Sarah Jessica Parker sits in her dressing room.  She picks up snow globe of New York City, shakes it and giggles.

She then picks up and “I LOVE NEW YORK” t-shirt and hugs it.  She places that down, picks up a New York Yankees hat

and puts it on, takes it off and puts it on with the brim in the back.   She looks into mirror that’s bordered in “I LOVE NEW YORK”

and “BIG APPLE” bumper stickers and talks to her own reflection.


Yeah.  Now that’s New York.


She adjusts hat, then puts 14K apple on chain around her neck.


SARAH (cont’d)

I may really come from Ohio but viewers these days have

trouble distinguishing  between what’s real and what’s on

television.  When “The West Wing” was on, they thought Martin

Sheen was the real president.


KNOCK ON DOOR:  A red-haired Cousin It enters.  It is costume designer, PATRICIA FIELDS.  She carries many outfits on hangers and

a lit cigarette hangs out of her mouth, parting her hair.



Thank you, thank you, thank you Sarah Jessica Parker and your

Sex and The City” show for resurrecting my career.  Before you, I

had a little hole-in-the-wall shop on 8th Street off University

Place, catering mostly to “women” whose average shoe size

was a 13 ½. Triple E.



You’re so welcome.  What do you think is more “New York”?  Warm pretzel

with mustard or dirty water dog?  I have to give a speech and…


Field begins throwing clothes at Sarah Jessica.



Let’s  see – a polka dot cardigan over a Mickey Mouse t-shirt,

pleated cupcake holder-as-hat, Catholic school pleated plaid

skirt, argyle knee socks and toe shoes…



Can the toe-shoes have a really high heel?



I don’t see why not!  You are my muse!



Actually, I think your muse was my great-grandmother when she

got off the boat on Ellis Island.  Nana Pearl was wearing on her

person three seasons worth of clothing because her cardboard suitcase

broke.  So she wore necklaces over schmattas over a sable coat under her

housecoat, over 14 blouses and several sweater-vests.



Yes – she does sound like my muse…



…and all those rubber-bands around her wrist.

Like those yellow “LiveStrong” bands, only more

Eastern European “ghetto…”



Eastern European “ghetto.”  Yes, I like that.

Speaking of those Jews…



Um…I am one of those Jews…



Poor Galliano.  Just because he said, “I love

Hitler!”  and  “people like you would be dead

today. Your mothers, your forefathers, would be

gassed and… dead…”



Ouch!  Not very nice…



Don’t you people get it?  It was theatre!

It was farce!



So that means we can make Armenian

slaughter jokes – you know, call it a “tour

 de force!”  or “improv at its best!” and you

won’t be offended?


Patricia Field picks up cushion full of pins and sticks them into Sarah Jessica’s chin, one at a time.


And then there’s Ms. Anna Wintour,

your other good friend who, when she isn’t growing her bangs long enough to cover

her Botox-injected forehead or forcing Andre Leon Talley to sit next to her so she’ll look

even more gaunt, is busy trying to get you back into the fashion design business.  Avec Oscar de la Renta.

Oy.  As Jerry Seinfeld once said, “Good luck with all that.”


Other designers, thus far, are not that interested.  Calvin Klein said,  “Don’t (cough) think (loser) so!” and Ralph Lauren,

nee Lipshitz, said, “I’m on the phone.  I’m on the phone in Westport, Ct.  My Labrador Retriever is by my side, as is my backgammon

set.  And badminton racquet.  What’s that?  The “n” in “badminton’ is silent?  My bad!”   Isaac Mizrachi purportedly squealed “Oy gevalt!”

and Diane von Furstenberg thinks you’re a little meshugah, though she won’t say it .


So who knows?  I’m sure someone owes Anna Wintour a favor or, at least would like to stay in the pages of “Vogue.”   But, on

the off-chance there is no work for you at a top fashion house, here are but a few alternatives:


*   John Galliano Kosher Pickles on Essex Street – uh, no – that’s not going to work out after all….


*   The Senate’s being a bitch about confirming Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense…  the uniform is kinda funky but I’m sure you can amp it

up with something offensive.


*    As they’ve done so much to make the Jewish people proud, perhaps the Emmanuel family – Rahm the Mayor and Ari the

Talent Agent and Ezikiel, the “bioethicist”– might like an adopted brother. You could be like the Marx Brothers.  Only not funny.

Oh wait – they’re Jewish.  Never mind…





*   Fiddler on the Roof is coming back to Broadway.  Tevye’s already been cast but I’m sure they can always us another Cossack.



*  You could dress up as other groups and make even more friends.  First, shout some racist slurs in Mecca and Medina, then

a stroll about the marketplace in a burqa and chador. Vladimir Putin seems to have an excellent sense of humor, so how about a

sable hat, Russian peasant shirt and KGB pin on those days you’re feeling  — I don’t know – a little ‘blah’ and need to be chased

through the streets of St. Petersburg by the Red Army?  There are kimonos and obis and Kabuki make-up, leiderhosen and dirndl

skirts.  Throw in some togas and tunics and you’ve got the World War II Axis nations covered.  And no one will be offended – promise!

*    Fewer and fewer men are choosing  “moile “as a profession.  As you’re almost Hasidic anyway, this could be perfect.  But if it’s been

a while (i.e, never) since you’ve practiced any Jewish rituals.  This one involves removing the foreskin of the penis.  So you might want

to practice a few times. On yourself


*  Mel Gibson doesn’t seem to have as many friends as he used to.  He tends to like men like himself — out-going, confident men who

also happen to hate Jews only when they’re drunk.   Johnny, I think this could be the beginning of a beautiful friendship…








Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

About three years ago, a neighborhood Barnes and Noble superstore closed, replaced by a David Barton gym.  I know, I know.  We live in a society that covets hard bodies over developed brains.  No longer is it shameful to think that Leopold and Loeb was the prequel to “Kate and Leopold.”  In fact, your contemporaries might even tell you it’s on their Netflix cue.  Today, it is actually acceptable to be stupid.  Okay – I’m sure someone will write and tell me “stupid” is not politically correct. Really?  Too fucking bad, because maybe if stupid people knew they were stupid they would do something about it.  Perhaps  “stupid” isn’t quite the right word.  As long as you know computer stuff and Wii stuff and Judd Apatow stuff, as long as you use the word “game” as a verb, you can get by.  And the reason for that is that no one else in your demographic, thanks to most Baby Boomer parents, knows much either.  Yes, you went to M.I.T. and you can create apps and  write computer programs and  text/while you bike-ride/while listening to music/while drinking Smart Water, which, by the way, clearly isn’t helping you.  Don’t misunderstand me.  As someone who wants to projectile-vomit at the term “mixed fractions,” I am in awe of your mad tech skills.   But that doesn’t make you literate.   “So what?” you think.  “I have an IPad 9!  and Peter Jackson wallpaper on my laptop and  “I can name 17 artisanal cheeses, in age-descending order!” Well, those of us who know that “Silas Marner” is a novel and not a finalist on “Top Chef,” well – we still feel superior to you.

silas marner cover




The fact that you know the difference between a memory card and a greeting card doesn’t make you literate and certainly doesn’t make this a pleasant world for me to live in.  Are you stupid?  Here’s the thing – if you are, you probably don’t think you are.  But – just in case – some tips to make you less so.  Write them down so next time, you don’t have to ask Siri.



*  Grammar is not an opinion.  I don’t believe in G-d” or “I don’t believe in eating red meat,” are subjective decisions. “I don’t believe in commas” is neither a heroic nor a noble statement nor is it an acceptable explanation as to why your grammar is atrocious.  “YOUR STUPID IF YOU THINK I TOOK YOU’RE COAT.  ANYWAY, IT’S OVER THEIR, NEXT TO THE STATIONERY BIKE.  NOT HEAR – THEY’RE!”


If you see a quote on Facebook from Leo Tolstoy and you think, “Wow – that guy is deep

instead of “Wow – that guy is dead,” think again.


Syrup of Ipecac is not a good anecdote for anything.



Lady Brett is not Lady Gaga’s sister, missing graphic  image   and the fact that you can name more Sith Lords than Hemingway novels is something you should keep to yourself and your other stupid friends.  If Ernest Hemingway were alive today, you’d make him want to put a bullet through his head.  Again.



*  “R” is the 17th letter of the alphabet and “U” is the 21st .    Letters are not words.  Sorry – I meant, “letters R not words…”


* Which is funnier – that Carmello Anthony was named after a candy bar from the ‘80s or that his wife is named after a TeleTubby?”   If you’re thinking, “What’s so funny about that?”  then I am laughing at you.   So are Carmello and LaLa.  And TinkyWinky, Dipsy and Po.




Neville Chamberlain has not nor has ever been related to Wilt Chamberlain.



When someone mentions a book and you say, “Oh wow – I saw the movie,”  that’s the equivalent of, “I haven’t read a book since ‘Goosebumps.’”



The plural of “you” is not “yous.”



When asked which countries belonged to the Axis during World War II, “Sorry dude – wasn’t there” is not an acceptable answer.



If you use the word “supposebly,” please don’t be shocked when the literate among us suppose you are not one of us.  Supposebly.


An “axe” is an implement one might use to chop down a cherry tree.  Please don’t “aks” me a question and expect an answer.  You may expect an anserrr, but you’ll probably not indersndt it anyway.


When you talk to the characters in a film in a movie theatre, they can’t hear you.



You may think it’s so cool that there were also painters named Donatello and Michelangelo and Raphael and Leonardo. The Renaissance called.  It wants its paintings and sculptures back.


Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

It’s the New Year.  Exciting.  Zzzzzzz.  Not everyone makes resolutions and even fewer keep them.  It’s way too presumptuous of me to offer appropriate resolutions for everyone.  So I’ll just make some suggestions for my generation, people born between 1945 and 1964.  Yes – you former filthy hippies who now own homes that cost more than the G.P.A. of many developing nations, aka third world countries, which is what I really want to say but I am prohibited from doing so thanks to P.C. Nation… But, I digress…



I’m sure you have your own resolutions.  Here are some that you might not break and will also make you a more pleasant person to be around.



*   I will replace “I’m a Baby Boomer” or “I’m a Boomer” with “I am old.”  It’s less obnoxious and more accurate.

Blame Baby Boomers For the Economy


*   I will tell my children the real reason their mom and I got divorced – “I was kinda bored and you

know, I was turning 40 and I’m kinda used to getting what I want because I’m pretty selfish and my parents

raised me to think I was too good for anyone.  So even though it really fucked up your head and I’m the reason

you’ll always have abandonment issues, will be on an eternal quest to find a daddy figure to marry,

and/or will get divorced four times yourself, I had to be true to myself – can you dig it?  If it wasn’t for me you wouldn’t have

blended families and half-siblings and step-siblings and you could enjoy your own wedding instead of worrying, “How do I make

sure my mom and her new husband and my dad and his third wife don’t kill each other while I’m taking my vows?” and

“How many people can, logistically walk me down the aisle?”  And now that I’m on my third set of kids,  I think I may have

finally gotten this “Dad” thing down.  Cool — right?”

*   I will stop referring to Viet Nam as “Nam,” particularly because the closest I’ve ever been to Vietnam was Waikiki Beach, and I got my Master’s degree in Art History  just to stay the hell out of ‘Nam.’


*   Instead of “I’m a DeadHead,” I will just say, “I’m 71.”  Same thing.


* I will keep working out because it may help me to live longer, but will refrain from approaching the 23-year-old with the six-pack to ask, “Want me to spot ya?”


* I will not try to Facebook “friend” the 16-year-old girl I had a crush on at sleep-away camp because unless she moved from Hewlitt to Brigadoon, I will be very disappointed when I see her.


Group photo - Sydney Theatre Group members.



*   I will not take out my guitar at family gatherings and play “Leavin’ On a Jet Plane.”  I will not take out my guitar at family gatherings.  I will not take out my guitar.


*  I will stop wearing my 35-year-old threadbare Ivy League t-shirt because the only people who it will still impress are my parents.  And they’re dead.


*  I know my grandchildren are the smartest, most gorgeous, funniest most gifted children ever born.  I do not have to share that information or that Instagram with anyone.


*Ditto my children.


*  The very next time a hipster even insinuates that his generation is cooler than mine, while I secretly wish I could fit into his skinny jeans or her skanky cardigan from the thrift shop, I will say, “Hendrix, Dylan, the Beatles, or Animal Collective, Arctic Monkeys, M.I.A?”  Game over.

The Beatles  Abbey Road  



*No PDA.  Ever. Under any circumstances.

Toe-curling ... public displays of affection couldn't save Al and Tipper Gore's marriage.




Tuesday, November 13th, 2012


Dear Starbucks,

One would think, with almost 20,000 locations throughout the United States, and the world, coupled with the fact that, as a coffee shop chain store, you have been part of our culture for almost 20 years,  that everything that could be said about you has been said.  Think again.  You’re wildly successful and clearly you don’t need me to re-vamp your business plan.  But then again, maybe you do…


First,  stop calling “small” coffees “tall.”  It’s confusing, inaccurate and stupid.   It’s like calling Lorne Michaels “tall.”   Not only is it deceptive, but your anal-retentive clerks are always compelled to correct me, either directly, by saying, “You mean a ‘tall,’” or, indirectly, by yelling to their co-workers,  “One tall coffee!”  I know the small is the tall.  I just purposely say “small” to fuck with your heads.  I think it’s funny when you look at me like I just said 2+2 = Hungarian Pot Roast.





Next, I hate your logo.  A twin-tailed mermaid?  A single-tailed mermaid would be disturbing enough.  And a mermaid has what to do with coffee?  Does Mrs. Paul’s fishsticks have a Keurig K-Cup on the box?  But now you’ve taken the word “Starbucks” off the cup so I can focus only on that fugly iconic sea creature. But maybe that’s a good thing.  From the start, I’d have preferred seeing the words “THERE’S COFFEE IN THIS CUP,” rather than “Starbucks.”  Starbucks is an illogical name for a place that sells coffee.


I know – it’s a whole Moby Dick thing – right?  Do you think your patrons know this?  How many of your lap-topped, IPod ear-budded customers know that “Moby Dick” was a novel?  Out of those, how many know Moby Dick was the whale?

Moby Dick Book Cover


And out of those, that Starbuck was the first mate of the Pequod who acts as a conservative force against Ahab’s mania?   I’m betting it’s less than the number of customers, country-wide, who actually buy those stupid mugs and Pumpkin Spice coffee beans. It is precisely because they aren’t literate that the mermaid isn’t a mind-fuck to many of your other customers.  You could put Gertrude Stein on the cup, or Ren and Stimpy or a braided honey-pretzel and it wouldn’t seem odd.  But I read and am easily annoyed so, it’s a stupid name for anything other than a blubber-fusion restaurant.


Why do your “baristas” ask my name and write it on a cup?  It makes me feel like I’m about to make a new friend that I don’t want.   Oh wait – I think I know.  It’s because even though there are 18 employees behind the counter, it still takes longer than a mani-pedi (with drying) to make my “small” (wink-wink) coffee and by the time it’s ready, there’s a day-after Thanksgiving Black Friday-sized crowd waiting for their coffees too!  And we all stand around waiting for our names to be called, like it’s some sort of raffle or Bingo Night at church and we hope you’re about to call “G49!”and the crowd thickens and there are two customers named “Erik” with a “k” waiting for Tazo Green Tea Frappuccino , the excitement builds.  And oh you psychological geniuses, your Starbuckians, by the time we actually get our drinks, we’re so grateful it’s almost okay that we paid nearly seven bucks for a small/tall latte.


Students gathered for the grand opening of Starbucks


And now, let’s get to your tip box.  Right in front of the cash register, next to the CDs, which seem as out of place in a coffee shop as they would in the shoe department at Nordstrom’s.  Not sure that I’d ever be interested in purchasing “The Unstoppable Rhythm of Reggae and Ska but am positive I’m not buying it a Starbucks.


But, back to the tip box which, if memory serves me correctly, is the first “tip-us-or-feel-like-the-cheap-bastard-we-know-you-are” tip box which all of them, by mere definition, are.  And a special thanks for making it out of Lucite so that even if we are guilted into dropping a few coins into it, everyone can see exactly what we’re dropping in.  As far as I’m concerned, you’re lucky it’s not Canadian nickels and those slugs you use to play Ski-Ball.  Here’s a tip: stop telling me a “small” is really a “tall,”and I might be more inclined to throw in a buck every now and then.


Next, please stop bragging about your “fair trade” Sumatran beans and your green coffee bean extracts and your commitment to sustainability and the environment.  I have two criteria – 1)  is your coffee hot and 2)  does it taste like coffee?  I don’t care if trained poodles crushed the beans.  It’s 8 am, I’ve had five hours of sleep, and I want my coffee.




Looking at huge posters of Guatemalan orphans smiling, as they concentrate on picking coffee beans,  makes me feel sad.  For about a second.  I think, “those poor children should be in school right now, learning about the solar system and reading Laura Ingalls Wilder and multiplying mixed fractions.”  But in the end I’m glad that I’m not the one sweating for a dollar a week, and that my office is air-conditioned, and start thinking about whether I should poach my salmon fillet for dinner or grill it.


You’re selling coffees and foods that are wrapped in cellophane or covered with plastic lids, i.e.,  foods that, with a drink, should be able to be consumed in a reasonable amount of time.

Taste Test: New Starbucks Items



Therefore, I would appreciate it if you stopped letting people move in.

  Starbucks Office Coffee photo



Be they hobos or crackheads, future screenwriters of America or IT start-up dorkazoids, many of your customers seem to be deluded into thinking they’re in a bed-and-breakfast.   Get them in, get them out or have them sign a lease.   How long can one linger over a Ham-and-cheese panninis, multi-grain bagels and yogurt parfaits if, in fact, one buys into the myth that a handful of granola and three blueberries transforms yogurt into a “parfait.”

And yet I see hipsters hunched over laptops for what seems to me to be an entire season.  Really.  It’s like I come in and they’re wearing Elmer Fudd hats and cashmere scarves and by the time I get my coffee they’re in sundresses and sandals.   No one should feel so comfortable in your place of business that I feel like I’m walking into their den.


Finally, what’s up with the deceptive Disney World-like wrap-around lines?  Am I going to get on the Dumbo Ride when I get to the end?  Maybe – just maybe – I’d stand on line for a Sophia Coppola-less “Godfather” prequel.  But for a Café Misto?  Really?  Don’t think I don’t know this is a ploy to get me to buy Starbuck’s merchandise like mugs and tea tumblers and that horrible instant coffee that tastes like – well, instant coffee.


I have measured out my life on Starbuck’s lines.


In the room baristas come and go,

talking of Caramel Frappuccino

I think that it is time to go

No more Machiatto



Saturday, November 3rd, 2012


Awww – did big mean Hurricane Sandy blow into town and blow your chance to be King or Queen of the Marathon?  I feel so bad for you.  I can’t believe they took your big generators away and gave it to people who lost life and limb, homes and memories, people who haven’t showered for a week or had a toilet that flushed.  You mean there were over 600 blankets and thousands of gallons of water and hundreds and hundreds of granola bars and they were for you, you very special person who runs because you have time for a leisure sport, and they gave those blankets and granola bars and water to those pain-in-the-ass people who didn’t have the good sense to book a room at the Ritz-Carlton or Parker Regency or St. Regis when they heard Hurricane Sandy was coming?  All because of them, you don’t get to run through the boroughs of New York, being applauded and splashed with water cups by people who don’t have the time or the money or the sense to train all year for this fabulous marathon.  And now all that water that would have been thrown at you, in an almost celebratory manner, is going to quench the thirst of people who haven’t  brushed their teeth for a week.  I wish there was something I could do to make you feel better.  Wait.  No, I don’t.  If there’s anything that’s taking even an iota of the pain of Hurricane Sandy out of me and putting a smile on my face, it’s the fact that the best you can do is run in place.


Well, you almost had your marathon.  Mayor BossyPants wanted you to have your marathon.  I’m sure that Bicycle Queen Janette Sudik-Kahn wanted you to have your marathon.  They figured, along with the head of the Road Runners Club, ‘What the heck — most of the people won’t know because they’re in shelters or apartments without heat or hot water or electricity, or wandering the streets, hoping someone throws them a broken umbrella or can or something, even if the label is missing.  Most of them were probably too stupid to stock up on batteries or candles, so they can’t hear the news anyway.  So they won’t KNOW we’re having our little elitist marathon.  They’re someplace shivering, or watching their sofa being carried into the Atlantic by the waves of water that overtook their living room or hoping that some of the FEMA trailers and National Guard promised by President Obama will show up before they wind up like Jack in Titanic.”


But then someone who works with Mayor Bloomberg  said something that should have been obvious before the first subway was shut down the day before the hurricane — “You know, Mike — having pretty much been a ‘have,’ as opposed to one of those unwashed ‘have-nots’ most of your life,  this might be hard for you to comprehend, but people standing on the roof of their house, waving a white sheet that says ‘KATRINA TWO,’ might not understand a bunch of privileged Americans and very-fast-on-their-feet Africans running just for the hell of it.  They could get pissed.  This might be divisive, Mr. Mayor.”  So, by Friday, Nanny-Mayor cancelled the marathon.  I know there are thousands of you moping about right now, thinking, “Gee — I’ve got this big number I was going to wear across my chest, and I’ve been carbo-loading and boasting to the neighbors and co-workers.  And now it’s just going to be another Sunday.  Awwww….   This seems as good a time as ever to tell you though, truth be told, I’d tell you every year since this insanity called a “marathon” started,  most of us don’t really care about your running career.  Many of us think you’re dopey and self-involved and we love the fact that there can only be one winner and even before you lace up your Nikes you know it isn’t you.  And here’s what else many of us think.  Okay.  I can only speak for myself…


Tell me you ran from a mugger, or ran toward a burning house to save some people and some pets, or you ran for a bus which, if you didn’t catch, you’d have to wait 58 minutes for the next one.  These are logical reasons to run.  Toward something important or away from something threatening.   When you tell me you ran the NYC marathon, my first thought is: why did you stop in Central Park instead of continuing to run until you get to – oh, I don’t know – Wyoming? !?!?  Why so hostile, Mollie?  Well, I’ll tell you.  There is a certain smugness to runners that is hard to find in most other sports enthusiasts.   “I have to eat just to keep weight on.”  How nice. Every person who’s had to eat nothing but ice chips for a week to lose a pound would like to pummel you in the face with a gallon of Gatorade.

And your fast metabolism does not make up for how fugly you look in your stupid running shorts which, by the way, guys –  are a tad effeminate-looking.   When I see any of you stretching  on a park bench before you run, I want to run up from behind you, kick the leg that’s on the ground and watch you tumble like a tea kettle.  No one ever asks yet you love to tell us, “I have a BMI of 18.”  Guess what?  You are still going to die and if you keep offering us that unsolicited bit of information, it might not be from natural causes.  I know you love to be super-thin and bony and you lady runners – you love it when your collar bone sticks out like a coat-hook.   I’ll admit, most of you are in admirable shape;  some of you look like Jack Skellington from the “The Nightmare Before Christmas”.   Love the silver Mylar cape you get when you cross the finish line – bet it makes you feel like a super-hero.  Yes.  You are Super Baked Potato Man.   Do you check the NY Times’ list of runners and times the following Monday?  How does it feel when you see your name, the fact that you came in 4,933 in your Nike Zoom Equalon +4 running shoes  and a barefoot Kenyan man, whose villagers combined don’t make what your sneakers cost, came in first?   See you at the Verrazano Bridge start line next year and don’t just run.  Jump.


Thursday, May 31st, 2012



I am almost always in a rush and therefore usually walk, take the subways or a cab to get around the city.  But a few weeks ago my feet were blistering from new shoes and I thought – why take a smelly subway and be forced to stare at those Lincoln Tech  ads,  or attempt to hail a cab which, in truth usually is more like hailing taken cabs, “off-duty” cabs, and  “no cabs.”?  Why not take a bus?


Here’s why:


The Clinique counter has officially moved from the main floor of Macy’s to the M21 bus.   How impervious are you to the rest of humanity that you’re able to pull from your Prada tote a make-up bag the size of a throw pillow and commence penciling your eyebrows, applying base, foundation and smoky eye shadow?  And if that doesn’t make me to want to pull your facial hairs out one by one, you insane twenty-something woman, you end this exhibition of self-absorption by curling your eyelashes with a chrome eye-lash curler????










What’s next – shaving your legs on the 14th St. cross-town?  Sally Hansen lip-waxing strips?  Do they need to add to the sign, “No Spitting, No Smoking, No Enemas?”  Sell the Prada, buy some dignity.



Apparently the gestational period of the average woman must exceed nine months before your average selfish hedge-fund managing, acquisitions-and-mergers creep will offer her his seat.  You can spread your legs really really wide and hold your Wall Street Journal open so that your arms resemble the top of a capital “T” but I see you and so does the woman standing over you, whose water is about to break.  Here’s hoping it breaks on your Gucci loafers – SPLAT!

Man reading newspaper on bus



You carry on your person a nail-clipper the size of a butter knife. – Okay – I guess you can carry it with you, but why do you think it’s okay to clip your nails on a bus?  I know – little pinky nail is a micro-hair longer than Mr. Ring Finger, but it’s not like your head’s on fire – it’s something you can wait until you get home to tend do instead of clipping when I’m sitting across from you and have to duck your little nail shards like a dirty bomb.



Clearly, buses and cafes have finally become interchangeable nouns.  What exactly is the story with the white Styrofoam platters of pork fried rice, spare ribs and hot chicken wings?

fat lady eats mayo This woman on the bus might have the saddest life in the history of the world
Why are you pulling a Tupperware container of homemade buckwheat noodles and edamame beans out of your environmentally friendly  unbleached cotton tote bag?  The Glad-bag full of baby raw carrots?   No one is thinking, “How healthy that woman is.”  We are all thinking, “You have flakes of Beta carotene settling in the corners of your mouthand “Even gerbils have manners enough to eat those in a cage.”  It’s not the 37th day of “Survivor: The Aleutian Islands.”  You’ll be home in three stops:  patience is a not only a virtue  – consider it a personal favor.


annoyingcellphone The Best Of The Danny Bonaduce Show 11.24.10


Your cell phone, your cell phone, your cell phone.  You probably don’t believe me, but you are not that important and the person to whom you are speaking can’t believe that you have to call him from the bus.  Again.  But, Mollie, you argue, New York traffic is awful and it can take 40 minutes to get from 14th Street to 42nd Street.  Yes, you are right.  But imagine how much worse it is for my ride to have to listen to you on your pathetic Carrie Bradshaw Swarovski-encased Smart Phone yabbering away at your friend or spouse or the contractor who’s putting in Silestone countertops for you.  I would rather hear labor pains than you on your stupid touch-phone, swirling your finger around the screen like it’s some New Age Oujii Board than, “Fresh Direct had the Campari tomatos, but they were all out of Acai juice.  Well, they had the frozen Acai juice, but not the bottled…”  In fact, I would rather be in labor than be forced to hear your banal banter.  The heck with waterboarding – I vote to send you down to Guantanamo Bay with your Droid.




Sunday, April 22nd, 2012

Given a choice, other than “Pardon me,” “Skim latte, double shot of espresso,” or “That’s my foot you’re stepping on,” I try to not engage in conversation with most people.  But occasionally, it’s unavoidable.  So, I try to stay awake and pretend that you have something interesting to say.  I make shopping lists in my head, wonder why you’re wearing what you’re wearing in public, picture myself walking through Paris’s Pere La Chaise cemetery, looking at dead bodies instead of being bored to death listening to you.    There are ways you can make the experience less painful for me, though I’m sure my comfort is not quite a priority for you.  But just in case, here are some of the words and phrases you can use to make it more pleasant for everyone.  Or me.  Just me.

open book ImageWe’re on the same page – Sorry.  No we’re not.  You’re on your IPad, crashing into me on 8th Street, I’m walking, eyes straight ahead, looking out for the likes of self-absorbed you.  I would never have the balls to crash into someone because I was so busy texting my boyfriend, “I’m on 8 St – Luv u2!,” and then shoot eye-daggers  because I didn’t see where I was going and walked into you.  But if I did,  my immediate  inclination would be to apologize.  But then again my inclination would not be to read “Twilight: Breaking Dawn,” as I strolled down Broadway.  Thank god for sidewalk skateboarders, bike riders and Razor scooterers – here they come at 30mph, right at you. But you won’t move and now you know what page you’re on? Page 1 of the New York Post as the headline, “Stupid  girl smashed into Halel Falafel truck as she searches for “Cheapest Knee Socks in NY” app!”



“Friend” as a verb –Pretty much, because, it’s a noun — either a common noun, as in, “You are my friend,” or, as a proper noun, plural, as in the name of a very annoying 90s sit-com.  Don’t tell me that you’ll “friend” me because it’s as grammatically correct as telling me that you’ll “refrigerator” me.


“I really love the place, but I need an outdoor space.”  You do? Really?  May I suggest some outdoor spaces for you?  The corner of 33rd Street and 3rd Avenue.  Central Park.  Union Square.  Brighton Beach.  The Long Island Expressway.  Stop referring to your apartment as “my space,” and your need for a place to park the car you shouldn’t have if you live in the borough of Manhattan unless you can also afford the $800 a month to indoor-garage it, as an “outdoor space.”  First, it’s called a parking spot, not an “outdoor space.”  Next, don’t use the words “need” and “outdoor space” in the same sentence unless you are a heart surgeon who has six minutes to make it from the street to the O.R. to save someone’s life.  It’s like “needing” a pastrami sandwich on rye, no caraway seeds with that dark German mustard and a Dr. Brown’s Cherry soda.  You’ll live.


Post-apocalyptic/Dystopian —   I lived a good many years without ever hearing either of these terms used by anyone other than sci-fi geeks when referencing works by George Orwell and Aldous Huxley.   Now you’re saying them.  A lot. Why?   Does it make you feel relevant?  Hip?  Hipster?  Do you even know what either of these terms mean?  Would you get the correct answer on the SATs without a Kaplan course?  You seem to say post-apocalyptic and/or Dystopian a lot. Why? We don’t think you’re smart when you use them.  We think you’re boring.  We think you also can name, by number and edition every issue of every Judge Dredd comic book. We think you orgasm to the words “Soylent Green,” and we think that you can’t think of any other adjective to describe a film or a book or a fashion. “Post-apocalyptic/Dystopian” is so much easier to say than, “a movie where lots of shit gets blown up or was blown up and it’s really kind of grey and dirty and everyone’s hungry or clones or some shit.”



Gleek – Absolutely no explanation necessary.  Synonym for “schmuck.”  Except “schmuck” is less of an insult.



Conflict free/ fair trade – Until the film, “Blood Diamond,” I never heard either of these expressions.   Then, suddenly,  guilt-ridden white women and their newly-affianced went out of their way, while showing off their Tiffany or Cartier or Harry Winston mega-karat rings mined in towns in South Africa where the percentage of people living below the poverty line is as high as 77%, earning less in a year than this couple pays for a month’s worth of Chai teas, “it’s a conflict-free” diamond.   “This diamond didn’t come from a batch that were used to wage war on some country I never heard of and can’t spell or locate on a map.” Here’s my theory — many years ago, several Yuppies sitting around the Sundance Catalogue Think Tank tried to figure out a way to continue to conspicuously consume and yet at the same time alleviate the tiny amount of guilt they might have and came up with this doozy:  “we’ll reject some – just some –of those luxury goods we could certainly live without and yet keep those goodies that set us apart from the common folk by mere virtue of the fact that we can afford it.  And we’ll make sure to use the term ’fair trade’, because – well –  fair is just such a nice word and people will think we’re good because we’re fair!”  And then they spread it like the Ebola virus, with fair trade cotton and fair trade chocolate and fair trade coffee and here’s the thing of it – I have the funniest feeling that if some guy gave you a diamond engagement ring the size of your fist – this one, for example –



and, if you found out that, in order for you to have this diamond, civil war was waged between two small African countries you never heard of, can’t pronounce or locate on a map, or that  a  family of South African orphans who hadn’t eaten for six months, whose hands and feet had blisters bigger than these diamonds, whose parents were buried alive in the mines looking for the perfect diamond for you, the first words out of your mouth would probably be, “Can you see all the colors of the rainbow reflected in each facet?”



It could be worse –  Really?  That’s so soothing and nothing I’ve ever considered before.  Wait.  Yes I have.  Well —  I’m not the Trump baby or Prince William or  a Pitt/Jolie adoptee so– I know “it could be worse.”  Why would I need you to tell me this? Better yet, what motivates you to tell me this?  Do you think it makes me feel better?  You mean I could break my leg, lose my job, be broke, pay $3,000 for an apartment the size of a pantry AND then have a malignant tumor?  Gee – thanks.  I feel so much better now.



My bad –I know what you’re thinking — no one uses “my bad” anymore.  You bad – yes they do.  In fact, many people use it the way it was supposed to be used and when you give them that, “This isn’t 2003 anymore” eye-roll, they say they’re using it ironically, as opposed to grammatically correctly, which even they know is a ridiculous claim.  “My bad” is the non-thinking man’s way to say, “It’s my fault,” which has only one more syllable and is the equivalent of saying,  “I really wasn’t thinking about you or being considerate of anyone else and you caught me – ooops.”



Fan fiction —  Why?  And the point is….?  Do you think that, just because Jane Austen is dead and her work is in the public domain,  you should be fucking with Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy?  Maybe, just maybe she ended the novel at the END?????  Just because there’s a “Land Before Time 87,” and everything you’ve seen and read in the past 20 years is a prequel or a sequel or part of a series doesn’t give you the right to turn perfectly good, sometimes brilliant fiction into crap, to prove to lots of other bored people online that you’re a “writer.”  Because, no you’re not.  You write“fan fiction,” which has less street cred than a garage band that never leaves the garage.



Ridonkulous – Three-way tie, with “adorkable,” and “chillax” as the most irritating faux-word that could come out of your mouth.  Stop trying to make yourself sound uber-cool or uber-witty or uber-young by sewing together the equivalent of word-remnants.  Say what you mean and mean what you say and stop using words like they came off of some a la carte menu.  Comprestand me?