Friday, April 27, 2012


Does that site still exist? It was like Deadspin for wealthy east coast girls back in its day. I think the big reveal might have eventually been that it was actually dudes writing it, which makes sense because men write better than women except in cases of wizardry. In any event, I'm fairly sure that the whole point of the blog was "fuck it we're better than you and we're going to go drink white wine and spend a bunch of money at a sceney restaurant in midtown Manhattan and dish on a bunch of betches." I don't find anything fundamentally wrong with that philosophy, haters gon' hate and all that shit, but what they have tapped into unintentionally is the fact that there really is nothing better than going out to eat. While some may find a fiscally responsible or therapeutic element to cooking at home, the fun ends there. Eating alone, at your broke ass breakfast table, or on the couch more likely, sucks. Even if you throw in a few roommates and some alcohol it's still pretty meh, but when you leave the comfort of home, it becomes an event.

Had I been born in feudal times, there is no doubt in my mind that I would have been some sort of low level noble. I suppose that is a rough translation of being born into modest wealth in Indianapolis. But still it beats the shit out of being born an indentured servent in Evansville or something like that. So even though I wouldn't have had as nice a castle as Sir Kenilworth, Duke of the North Shore, I would have still had wenches to wait on me and servants to clean up after me. I think this is why I so much enjoy going out, I like being served (not in a "You Got" kind of way) it's in my blood, in fact I have googled my family crest, it's a bad ass 16 point German buck, they don't just give those away to anyone.

But clearly I am not going to write an entire essay on the merits of going out to dinner and how I believe I am the long lost Baron of Hamburg. (Note: I have never traced my German ancestry. I have no idea what region I am from, all that I know is that to qualify as a WASP you have to be from England, France or Northern Germany and being Waspy indicates that you possess old money and power. I'm rolling with it) Instead I would like to present to you a fail safe plan B for when plans fall through. There are probably people out there that find it invigorating to not have any plans on a Friday night. Some may take it as a sign to, dare I say, stay in. Others may buy a bag of blow and see what happens. May I present a middle ground, one of life's most magical mysteries, the BYOB dinner.

I never really knew what a BYOB restaurant was. I always saw BYOB scrawled across the fictitious party fliers in movies that were thrown in the air 8th period on Fridays. Bring Your Own Beer man!!!! Then I moved to Chicago. That city is literally crawling with them, if you ever go to dinner and are paying for your drinks they better have a fucking miraculous bone-in filet. Otherwise, it is generally considered a much better option to call a small locally owned ethnic place that cannot afford a proper liquor license and alert them that they should be taking out a large insurance policy in the next 2 hours...because you and your friends are fully intent on burning that bitch down. In Los Angeles they are few and far between, but they exist if you seek them out. A couple of my favorites include Cha Cha Chicken in Santa Monica and Mao's in Venice. Many of these establishments will have "rules" like beer and wine only, or a one bottle per head maximum. Then again I've never seen a Chinaman not accept a 5 dollar bill in exchange for a blind eye.

What this exercise often results in is full blown mayhem. 2 bottles of wine per head, a few rogue cases of beer and a rotating handle is sure to get your party blacked out in a hurry. Drinking games, chanting and obnoxious cheersing will ensue. But the most important message is to let everyone else in the restaurant know that they aren't having as much fun as you. Because it's always important to let the masses know where they stand in the grand scheme of things. They are the peasants that are lucky to be in the same venue as the lords and ladies they are among.

So after a few hours of servitude from some distressed waitress that inevitably doesn't speak English, and lording over a venue as if it were a territory in your Kingdom, it's time to go home, right? Wrong! This is where the female version of "dinner with friends" and my my version take hard and different paths. Dinner is not an excuse to get together with friends, catch up and perhaps over indulge only to go home and sleep it off. NO! It is an excuse to have a very public and obnoxious pregame, it's then off to the bar. It's a commonly accepted fact that going ham is much more fun in public than it is in the privacy of your own home. That is why people go to bars, otherwise they would just drink a handle in their own bedroom on a Saturday night and save $300. But that's fucking weak, nothing happens unless a shit ton of people see it, so this is why we are taking the pregame public. Sure consuming food is a basic human function, but there is no reason you can't do it whilst consuming $6 worth of wine. And no, I'm not talking about 1 glass, I'm speaking of 3 bottles of 2 buck Chuck.

So fear not my friends, Trader Joe's is open til 10 and if you live in a metro area, there is a Thai woman who wants to host your pregame. $20 and 2 hours later you should be well on the way to having the greatest night of your life. And it's such an easy sell to anyone "hey you want to do a big group dinner?" It sounds so innocent, if only they knew. Cancel your plans to go see The Five Year Engagement, or rather reschedule for Sunday at 5 and do a quick UrbanSpoon search for BYOB and start your weekend off right. We had a big week here in LA: 2 new jobs, a TV show wrapped, a pilot won the LA Comedy Festival, someone started writing for a major blog, life is good...what better way that to go eat some sushi with your guys? or girls...or both? And maybe polish a few gallons of vodka on the way. Speaking of those annoying cunts, what is the story with that blog...

*Does quick Google Search*

Ok, most recent post April it's been dead a year...wait, what's that? A Dawson's Creek reference and a reference to the Skulls in the first sentence? (Imagine the Skulls, but without Pacey) I'm at a loss for words, maybe New Yorkers aren't that bad. Have a nice weekend, and don't worry about getting banned from your favorite BYOB restaurant after an especially raucous affair, I'm pretty sure foreigners view white people the same way as we view them, everyone looks the same.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Once Upon a Dream

I used to think I was pretty hardcore...or at least immune to the inevitable "slowing down" that plagues former frat stars when they reach their mid 20's. However as I write to you currently, I have one eye halfway sealed shut, and I can't type a full sentence without the scabs on my hands bursting open in a bloody pusy mess. The conclusion is that I'm done, well not done but I'm at least on my way down. The 72 hours that consisted of my last weekend were magical. Between a triumphant return to Chicago and a 8th consecutive Little 500, I couldn't have asked for a better party, but the aftermath is becoming a little too much to handle.

In former years, the moral hangover that was little 5 would consist of rationalizing why I cheated on a  girlfriend, that drugs are a victimless crime and I could at least sleep for 48 hours before showing up to class on Wednesday and high-fiving some like minded frat stars who had obviously just come out of their hangover hibernation. Back then it was all fun and games, but it's not so much fun when you have to wake up after bleeding yourself to sleep, drive 300 miles to O'Hare and then fly 1800 more to Los Angeles in a middle non-reclining seat on Spirit Air.

When I was 18, I dove into Geist Reservoir and hit my head on a rock. I was drunk as fuck so my blood would not coagulate. My face somewhat resembled that waterfall in Jurassic Park 2 that showed all the blood coming down it. We all laughed it off and went to Bella Vita and ordered pizzas and kept drinking. That summer I was working at Fry's Electronics as a glorified cashier. I probably talked to 300 customers a day and every single one of them asked "what the fuck is wrong with your face?" Back then it was a fun game, I made up the craziest stories to entertain myself.  Bar fights, motorcycle crash, attacked by a wild bear. Looking back on that whole story, I probably should have snapped my neck and died, or at least become paralyzed. I went to a benefit for spinal cord injuries and more often than not that's how it happens. "We were partying by a pool, I fell in and couldn't feel my legs." I survived with a summer of embarrassment and a couple small scars.

Seven years later and I look even worse. I'm in sales so I talk to people. Fortunately for me, my current injuries look exactly like I had a bad surfing fall and hit my face on the sand bar. So I roll with that and actually it has been endearing me moreso to business owners because surfing is bad ass. What really happened you ask? I don't know, the story I'm rolling with is their were a couple unruly geeds that pushed me to the ground Saturday night as I was stumbling home from Kilroy's Saturday night. But I don't even know if that's true, I wouldn't be surprised if I got hit by a car, tried to steal a bike and wrecked it, or just genuinely fell on my face. See the glory of the black out is you can write your own story and as a fiction writer it's fun to fill in the blanks with some creative license. I can't separate my dreams from reality anymore, or what actually did go down this weekend. For example I'm fairly certain the following happened this weekend: someone in my hotel room got arrested, someone started bleeding from their pores due to an allergic reaction to alcohol and someone had a threeway in our hotel's hot tub. But looking back, I'm not sure if any of that is true, I remember my first 7 or 8 shots at Kilroy's and then it fades.

As I browse the pictures, bits and pieces come back to me. Oh yah, the frat was awesome! Jesus Alpha Phi is hot. Where do I get one of those race day tanks? The 3 story beer bong! Oh my god, the Country Roads beer shower was epic! That person was there? Oh fuck, I went THERE late night? I think my general consensus of the weekend is that going to Little 5 is similar to going on a Vegas Trip. Sure there are epic stories, wild transgressions against the laws of common decency, but when remembered nothing seems to resonate. Perhaps it's because looking back on it we feel a little guilty about the choices that were made, and to an outsider it will never sound as wild and crazy as described. So maybe we should take a play out of the Nevada tourism board's playbook and just not talk about it. Remember that we all went and had a good time, post a few of the more harmless pictures and call it a day.

It's Tuesday now, I'm hoping by Thursday my urine will return to a respectable color and I will stop picking orange and blue boogers. I'll probably never go back to Bloomington for a bender like I just went on, but I will always look back on these memories (and lack thereof) with fondness. Bloomington will always represent a chapter of my life that I am proud of. Not proud of the hearts, laws and records I broke, but because it shaped who I am today and that dude is pretty fucking cool. I could jaw about how I probably consumed 200 alcoholic beverages in 48 hours or that I slept for 4 hours but that would be lame (and those would be lies.) I would much rather tell you that despite the condition I currently find myself in, the trip was a fucking blast, and I wouldn't have changed a thing. Except I should have worn a helmet out Saturday night...whatever at least I don't have to put Ron Chapman on retainer again.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Power Rankings: Little 5 playlist

Turns out Skrillex was a huge Hook fan.

As a Blogger it is important to know your strengths. Mine are lotted in my ability to consistently find creative ways to use appalling language, offend everyone who isn't a conservative WASP, talk about raging and adopting a carpe diem attitude. Sadly that severely limits the scope of what I can write about. Basically I have to relive the glory days and/or talk about how much better life is when you're seeing double. If you haven't realized yet, I pretty much write the same thing day in and day out, if you haven't caught on to me yet, then please disregard this prologue. In addition you have to give the readers what they want. That will generate hits, which will generate word of mouth, which will make you internet famous and eventually you will start seeing small sum checks from Google ad sense.

Oh, but I do not monetize. I think my competitive advantage is that I can draw metaphors like "as appealing as a razor burned cunt" (That's actually a simile, but you get the point) However, today I'm going to cater to what the people want, or what I think they want. A list, no mind you, a power ranking! Everyone fucking loves power rankings, I don't know why I'm so implicitly driven to them. It is a fictitious number that gives validation to how I feel about any number of topics at a given time. Todays list will be somewhat topical in the form of Little 500. (Ugh, but you already did your annual Little 5 post)  Not like I have to justify doing several posts about the greatest college week of the year, but alas this will be considerably different (even if it wasn't I just admitted that I constantly write about the same 3 or 4 topics) Furthermore, I am combining a topic I used to know a lot about (Bloomington frat parties) with a genre I know next to nothing about. While I am a formidable force to be reckoned with in television and film, my music knowledge is and always will be shit. That said, I will still give it the old college try (I read like 3 music blogs today, so I am feeling particularly in the know) and generate the top 10 songs you are likely to hear at frat parties this weekend.

1. "Bangarang" - Skrillex
Eric Stratton is probably rolling around in his grave (scratch that he's 64 and currently costarring on Rachel Bilson's new show, and he was Van Wilder's dad...frat) but it's a new era for frat. The whiskey and the marijuana have been replaced by molly and uppers, and this is the new generation of rage. But why "Bangarang?" Scary Monsters is legit old now and Cinema is too slow of a build, this week moves a million feet per second and so does this song.

2. "Calling" - Sebastian Ingrosso/Alesso/One Republic
Oh this is a tasty treat. Released in the US Apple store less than a month ago this song has been building strong momentum. The crossover appeal of this song is ridiculous because while all the edm fanatics have been on that Swedish house kick for a while now, the vocals added by One Republic (side not, I keep getting them confused with those Irish pussies One Direction) will get all the ladies involved I'm sure. Plus, the drop on this song is great for beer showers.

3. "Call Me Maybe" - Carly Rae Jepsen
Our first foray into pop music comes in at number 3. So here's the story Carly Rae Jepsen finished 3rd in Canadian Idol a few years back, signs with Scooter Braun, befriends Justin Bieber and then they make that "youtube video with the disney channel kids." In all actuality it's really just Biebs, Selena and Tisdale hanging out with CRJ and all her friends. The point however though is that video is amazing, they are all so drunk and if you haven't conspired to get fucked up and make a music video of your own to that song you are a liar. It's catchy, chicks love it and Pi Kapps will probably have it playing on repeat.

4. "Levels" - Avicii
Wow, 3 of the top 4 are electric? What has the courtyard come to? "Levels" probably would have been number 1 if little 5 had been 6 months ago. But in that time Skrillex has made a remix, Flo Rida has butchered it in fact the most popular version of the song right now is probably the redubbed version that is played in reverse, but it remains in the Final 4 because this song is like your first lover...ya you aren't still consistently fucking it, but it will always have a place in your heart.

5. "Ass" - Big Sean/Nikki Minaj
It seems like people are finally coming around on Big Sean. He's been forgiven for the rape thing and his new music is being received extremely well. Now let me address Ms. Minaj. I think she is funny, I think she is fairly sexy, I googled her nip slip from Good Morning America...but the lyrics. "Kiss my ass and my anus because I'm finally famous." I don't think she is just metaphorically speaking. I think she wants a prospective lover to actually insert his tongue into her butthole, and that isn't even the least of it. It must be a black people thing...I've never understood sexual perverse female rap. Not that the idea of cunnilingus is horrifying in its own right, but when females use it as empowerment, no thanks.

6. "Country Roads" - Who fucking knows
Ok so this may be wishful thinking. A lot has changed from the days of the Shingles post tailgate after parties and the days of will the superfrat floor collapse or won't it. However, my prevailing theory is that if you were a Freshman or Sophomore and saw this happening as you were an underclassmen you couldn't help but thinking, "this is the epitome of awesome, we cannot let this die." In fact last year's little 5 I would argue that this was still the biggest hit of any song played. It prompted an older alumni I was standing near to say, "wow I remember when we actually drank the beer." No man, we're trying to get our frat tanks drunk (this is a reference to beer showers)

7. "Young, Wild and Free" - Snoop/Wiz
If there is one anthem that validates the hedonistic tendencies of a generation, more specifically frat guys and sorority girls, it's definitely this song. Especially after bringing the house down at Coachella this past weekend, Snoop is as hot as ever right now, and there are still a ton of white guys that think rappers talking about smoking pot makes them homies by affiliation. Who knows, maybe hologram 2pac will pop up at a party near you.

8. "Rack City" - Tyga
Not necessarily new or fresh, something about the "rack rack city bitch" just drives white people wild (myself included) It may not be as radio popular as the newest Drake song, but I think Drake's music is a bit morose for a party full of 200 blacked out twentysomethings. So the final rap slot goes to the Tyg.

9. "Feel So Close" - Calvin Harris
While I wanted to give the final electro house spot to someone like Dada Life, Laidback Luke or even Kaskade the truth of the matter is that "Feel So Close" has had some success on the pop charts as a crossover jam, and while I'm sure there are people at IU that check weekly for the newest releases, this song is much more Bloomington B97 friendly.

10. "Don't Stop Believin" - Journey
There was no way I could have a power ranking list without one wink to the 80's. Even if the college bars are no longer playing fist pumping power ballad sing alongs in favor of hip hop and ironic boy band tunes, this song just refuses to die. It's like the new frattlings feel obligated to honor their roots and occasionally this song will pop up and just like I'm sure it did 25 years ago, everyone stops chugging their beer and drunkenly sings along. It's important to know where you are going, but one must never forget where they came from.

Well team, I did my best. I'm sure a bunch of you think this list is shit, I didn't take many risks, and I could be way off. That said, I think we can all agree that if a girl tries to put on Gotye race day at noon she deserves a full beer poured on her face. Get excited, we're about 48 hours from race time and I can't wait to see a bunch of you down there in less than 24. Make it an epic weekend Btown, as always I have the upmost faith in you and you never disappoint.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Coming soon to HBO, the generation defining series of what it really means to be young living in New York. John is an investment banker living in midtown Manhattan. He blows his massive salary on a cocktail of drugs and women each weekend and has lately had trouble hiding his personal life from his professional life. Mike still lives at home in Manhasset. He works part time for his dad and has no real ambition. He spends every Thursday-Sunday living on John's couch and has thrice had intercourse on the LIRR. Matt is an aspiring writer scraping by in Brooklyn, he often opts partying with his buds Mike and John in Manhattan to doing things like eat and pay rent. His parents always tell him this is "the last time" they will cover his bills. Said plug has yet to be pulled. Danny lives in a condo on the upper east side and is "self-employed" he blogs for a lifestyle "bro-site" and throws his trust fund around to gain local fame and notoriety along New York's underbelly.

This show will never be made. But it's a shame. It's as if the bro culture was given Entourage, and look what happened with that. It turned into a self-important turd nugget by the end of its second season. Now any show on television that attempts to tap into "bro-culture" is an over exaggerated parody of itself. Think to shows like Blue Mountain State, Workaholics, Always Sunny, they revolve around lovable losers, lazy pieces of shit that become endearing because of their ineptitude. I suppose it's a fair assumption that there isn't a particularly large faction of producers in Hollywood lobbying for more WASPy elitism on tv, so I just accept it for what it is. Television programming is more or less geared at middle America's women. Cop procedurals, medical dramas, eh...they're easy to follow. Show the other side what these cool jobs are all about. Need to fill a time slot? Copy a British reality series!

But then every so often a show like Girls comes along and totally flips the script on you. I'll admit that I have a bit of a culture identity. I grew up in Indiana, which is as middle as you can get (consequently ABC's show The Middle is about growing up in Indiana, and is one of two current primetime shows to talk about Indianapolis as "heading to the big city") However, after making the jump to Chicago and more recently to Los Angeles I think I have become a bit more metropolitan and I feel qualified to speak as a legit city dweller. Anyway, I watch this show about a bunch of misfits living in Brooklyn and I am equal parts impressed and horrified. The intellectual in me loves that there is finally a show trying to realistically diagnose what is going on with generation Y (though it pains me that it is coming from the female perspective...I'll explain later) the midwesterner it me though is appalled at the rampant pretentiousness of this endeavor. "You are from New York, therefore you are interesting."

I suppose I never understood the whole New York pride thing. It's a big city with frequently bad weather and lots of immigrants. Not that there is anything wrong with either of those, it's just whatever. Yes there are lots of cool places and things to do and it's crowded and has a hustle and bustle and it's expensive and it's on the East Coast. I...I don't know, cool I guess? I moved to LA because it's bad ass to move far away from where you are from and I like the beach. That said, I don't feel entitled to talk down to entire geo populations because I live in a more culturally significant hub than they do. I talk shit about people back home getting bored and married and all that, but I'm sure there are people in rural Illinois that drink and rage just as hard as I do. I talk down to people because I'm the fucking man, not because I live in LA.

Now that we have that little NYC rant out of the way (side note: I actually really enjoy NYC. I have a really swell time when I go, I just don't understand the self important nature of east coasters, like most of you are funny looking and a lot of guys have girl names. Was that anti-semetic? I'm sorry, Smallwood left me jaded) allow me to talk in general about the actual show and what I think it tries to accomplish. I've only seen the first 3 episodes, but my gut is telling me that everyone from the coasts will fucking love this show and everyone else will be like, ya quit your bitching about getting cut off, I'll be living in this studio apartment paying off my student loans for the next 15 years. But I won't demand that everyone have white guilt about this show. If you were born into privilege and decide that you are going to go out to hundred dollar dinners every night and throw it on the family credit card more power to you. I would give anything to be a trust fund fuck up entering my third stint of rehab, life is just easier that way regardless of how many people call you a piece of shit behind your back. (You may be a piece of shit, but you are a piece of shit that doesn't look at price tags)

I think the show nails the sense of entitlement that we collectively feel as a generation. We haven't really been asked to do anything for ourselves. I don't know what life was like in previous generations, but I'd say that we are collectively pretty hedonistic and selfish, the pilot episode featured the main character drinking away her sadness and then letting some dude ride her from behind...a typical Tuesday night apparently in Brooklyn.

My main criticism of the show though is it's almost accepted that these flawed characters earn instant redemption in the eyes of the viewer due to the stereotype of gender roles. The show is like "ugh life in your 20's is SO hard especially if you are a girl" when the whole plot is basically just about being a 20 something in New York. But because they are girls their behavior is forgiven as being quirky and at times feministic. Re-imagine that scene I mentioned earlier. A dude bitches at his parents for not giving him any more money (I loved this scene actually because it validated my asking my parents for money. I'm NOT the only one!) He leaves all pissed off, goes and rips it with his buddies and then calls over a slam piece and owns her from behind. That probably wouldn't resonate at all, except maybe with a bunch of frat guys who would high five. But because our protagonist is overweight and the guy she sleeps with is a dorky hipster it's like you know just part of being young.

Perhaps a show about a bunch of bros owning New York wouldn't be particularly heart felt or interesting, but at least it would be a show with some balls. I'm so sick of everyone apologizing for what they are. That was my main praise for Project X. Sure the writing and acting were suspect at best, but the whole idea of "we are going to rip it and we don't give a fuck" earned a golf clap from yours truly.

I suggest to you all to tune in on Sundays to watch Girls. I will continue to love that a show portrays living in your 20's as being much darker than Friends (my god there is blatant alcoholism, promiscuity and they know a drug dealer!) but the midwest me will continue to be perplexed by the New York superiority complex and contemplate if the show would be better as told from the perspective of 4 midwest transplants living in the big apple. Four girls drinking white wine talking about boys, or four bros huddled around a mirror crushing up adderall pitching their start up ideas before a late night on the town...what show do you want defining you? I'll keep pestering Sue Naegle with my scripts for a companion series and let America decide.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Risky Business

Looks like a young Julie Cooper-Nichol. I'd hit it.

Coachella has started, and I am not there. It's raining in LA and I have the house to myself this weekend. I think most people would look at this as an amazing opportunity to relax and have free reign of the castle all weekend. Nope, not me. I just think it sounds fucking miserable. To make things worse my receiver is fucked, thus my 346 inch projector tv is out of play and to make matters worse, in between meetings today while I'm sitting at coffee shops I'm going to have to watch informational videos on how to tie a tie. Isn't it just pathetic? How could I not know how to tie a tie you ask? I was after all a business major. I did interview 100 times through Kelley Senior year, companies flew me out to interview, those required suits and a tie. Simple really, one day I had my dad tie 10 and then I never took the knot out for like 5 years. Sure there have been jams, but there was usually a normal male around to do it for me. This is just further proof that I am secretly 10 years old...between this and eating dino shaped chicken nuggets for dinner I'm realizing that my Peter Pan complex goes much deeper than the whole partying thing.

But why must I wear a tie? I haven't even tucked a shirt in since I moved to Los Angeles. Shorts and flip slops or get out. Tonight I am going to a charity thing. For those of you not in the know, these charity things are a way to raise money for a worthy cause but also reward people by having an open bar, getting dressed up and raging. It's kind of like a frat wine and cheese party except I believe it is generally frowned upon to bang a girl in the house mom's office at the Beverly Hilton.

And while I have that to look forward to, part of me, well all of me is going through some extremely intense fomo this weekend. As you all know Coachella is going on this weekend. And like most of you (or maybe not, maybe I'm the only one that does this) I never plan ahead for things like this or purchase a ticket or airfare in advance. See I live very much in the present and I am only excited by things that carry immediate gratification. Sure, I could have bought a ticket back in September like everyone else, but it's so hard to fork over $400 for something that is going to be awesome 6 months from now, when instead you can spend that $400 on an impromptu trip to Vegas. Now this burns me sometimes, but usually not. I am usually able to sneak into Lolla or pay off a security guard and it generally works out. It is not working out this weekend. I did something I NEVER do, actually I always do stupid spontaneous stuff like this. I was in a bad mood last week and I booked a cross country flight to make myself feel better. That shit is invigorating. So now I'm going to Little 5 in like 5 days, but it just isn't enough. Fun will be had between now and then by people other than me, and that shit is unacceptable.

So I have some decisions to make. With most of my "fun budget" dedicated to Little 5, I am in a precarious spot in regards to Coachella which after ticket, gas, lodging, booze, "other" will run close to a g. I can strip it down to bare bones, drink nothing but plastic handle vodka, low ball craigslist people and probably get the collective trip down to $500. But still, I am in no way financially liquid enough to make a decision like that, but...what's living life without spitballing a few scenarios in which it could work. These are a few things I thought up in the shower today.

1.) What if I just paid my rent late? Living in LA is extremely expensive, working for a start up is not financially rewarding. Each month I have my fun check and my living check. What if this month I just used my fun check for Little 5 and my living check (that has to pay rent, bills, etc.) for Coachella. Sure it means I won't be able to pay rent until the 4th (the next pay day) but fuck. They joke about this on sitcoms all the time. And ya, sit coms are a work of fiction, but I'm sure it's based in some truth. I doubt I will get evicted for paying rent 4 days late. I hear all the time about people being 3 months behind, water getting shut off...rarely do you hear landlords bitching about 96 hours. Blame it on the postal service (I think "checks in the mail" buys you at least a week)

2.) What if I went to Chase and got a credit card? "Yes I would like a $1000 limit and I want the account shut down on Monday." What? Why would you want to do that? "I want to blow a thousand dollars with much frivolity and pay for my decisions slowly over the next 6 months." I still don't understand. "I'm going to Coachella and I'm fucking broke, can I have it or not?"

Sure this is a really bad idea too...but no worse than people taking out additional student loans for Spring Break right? I mean I won't remember this music, and I'm not really that big of a fan of anyone playing, but what if I miss the chance to get drunk and do hallucinogens in a muddy field with strangers? That's a memory money can't buy.

3.) Take a loan out against my car. I honestly heard a radio ad about this today. If you own your car (heyooo I have an asset) you can take a loan out against it. It's like taking out a reverse mortgage on your home. You can't sell it, and technically you don't own it anymore, but they will front you some dough and hold your title as collateral. Unfortunately, I'm thinking an auto title loan takes more than an hour to acquire...scratch that.

4.) A bail out. What this presupposes is, is that I keep spending until I have nothing and then ask for help. The American auto industry got to do it and they make shitty cars. At least I'm not lying, I live above my means, and I'm sorry I won't do it again. Unfortunately, I think what this is called in legal speak is filing for personal bankruptcy and while it doesn't seem to have that much of a negative effect on one's life, I've been bashing poor people and democrats my whole life, so out of principal I will never execute this option no matter how dire my straights become. That said, the old mom and dad savings and loan is always open for business...and let me tell ya business is good.

5.) I could just not go. As it stands now, even if i acquired a ticket for $150, I would end up camping by myself and sleeping in my car. It wouldn't be that bad, I would wander around and eventually tell a cool group my story and I'm sure they would let me hang out with them at the camp site. They may even let me have one of their women, that said the Chevy Cobalt is not conducive to shacking and that might be a violation of the terms and conditions of my auto title loan (That's a call back! Very effective tool in comedy) Every day I would have to drunkenly wander around looking for my friends, and then when I did find them after the concert was over they would go after party in their hotel and I would go after party with some Burnetts and a pack of Swisher Sweets I found on the ground. What I'm saying is I'm starting to think this whole Coachella thing isn't worth the effort. I've done the EDM thing, I'm sure I'll make it back for Lolla this year. I think my time and effort will be much better spent planning my bender of a little 5, eating all my roommates' food and finding an escort with which I plan on copulating   in every room in the house. And oh ya, I'm gonna get fucking retarded at that benefit tonight, I just hope it isn't for Downs.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Breaking Away

Still can't believe I never recreated this pose with my 3 best friends.
I wonder if I will get to a point in my life where I will be one of those guys who hasn't taken a vacation in 5 years. It's extremely easy at this age to book a last minute flight, travel with the clothes on your back and crash on your buddy's couch in Manhattan. But then you get a wife, kids, everyone's schedule has to sync up perfectly, and what once was a $100 Spirit flight cross country is now you spending the next 2 years paying off the credit card debt incurred with 4 roundtrip flights, a hotel, meals, shows, etc. Then again when you are 40 the hope is that you won't also be incurring thousand dollar bar tabs on a bro trip, so I suppose there is a bit of a trade off there.

I suppose the grass is always greener. I often daydream about life as a consultant. Not because they necessarily make more money than me, but because they live their life on the go. I feel like when you never spend more than a week in a certain place you never become complacent. Sure expense reports are probably a bitch, but they constantly have the option of exploring a strange place on a Tuesday night as opposed to coming home from work, cooking pasta and watching full metal jousting.

Conversely, they probably tire of the grind, and would give anything to pop a bottle of wine on a Wednesday night sprawl out on their couch and watch bad tv. It must put a strain on relationships never being around, but the idea of living life a mile high with a corporate card and using your unlimited miles to do as you please on your free weekends just seems kind of nice.

I live in Los Angeles, on the fucking beach no less and after 2 months of no off the wall weekend excursions I feel myself in a rut. Maybe it's because I'm in sales and I spend all day talking to people who just want me to go away. Maybe it's because the people here are largely a disappointment. However, I think I just can't stand routine. Some days I wonder what would happen if one of my shitty scripts sold and I became a real life writer. What would I do all day? Wake up, write for a hew hours? Ok it's noon now and no one will come home from work for 7 hours. Go to the beach? And what, tool around with all the bums by myself? I've done it, I spent 2 months in Chicago last year unemployed. The first 2 weeks were fucking great, but after that, it's just kinda depressing.

All signs point to me not having a greater purpose, specific goals or direction I'm looking for. So you stare at the calendar and look for things to get excited about. Oh, in 3 days it's Friday. That will be great. Coachella is this weekend, people may come in town a little early and I get see some friendly faces. Maybe I'll go! What? A ticket to Coachella is $400 with an additional $300 for lodging? And that doesn't even cover booze etc? Fuck that.

Then like some sort of sign from God, the new painfully annoying Facebook reader pops up an article that one of your friends has recently read (I hate this thing because I don't want you people to know what I read. I read articles about cats and Kim Kardashian's latest plastic surgery. Sometimes however I will click on a particularly thought provoking article so I can fool everyone into thinking I am deeply introspective) However, this particular article was about the 10 best college parties in the country. It was on Huff Po so I expected it be fairly tame, it listed a handful of college parties on there. Nothing from Indiana. I didn't find this too shocking. Everyone always thinks they had the greatest college experience, and when you fight about it you just sound like a raging tool. The shocking thing about the article was the RESOUNDING "fuck you" to the author in the comments. Not only were Indiana folks upset about the non inclusion of Little 5, it seemed everyone in the country was up in arms about it. Little 500 and some shit called Floatopia in Santa Barbara (I'll see you next year.)

A simple browsing of my Indiana e-mail that I haven't checked in 6 months shows me that there is already a certain crew planning on making the trip from an old frat email chain. I check the calendar and see it's only a few weeks away. Then I do what I'm great at when I'm at a rut, hit Kayak hard. When you aren't feeling on top of the world, nothing cheers you up like the prospect of a vacation.

I was hesitant to commit because, well, I'm 25 now. I've been to 8 Little 5's already, it might be time to give up on the dream. But then I thought, well Indiana IS home. I can see a bunch of friends, see my parents for brunch on Sunday...I didn't get to see my family for Easter...I haven't been to a Homecoming in 3 years. Then I shut my eyes and thought of the following: ripping a cherry flavored vodka shot and doing a back flip off of a double decker into Lake Monroe...

Oh, it's fucking on. $500 to Indianapolis...can't swing it. Check Southwest $320. Getting there. How about flying into Chicago, there has to be someone driving from Chicago. $295. I can swing $295, but then there will be no Kilroy's lording...Priceline name your own price! Fuck ya Shattner...$220. Oh my God I can taste the Nick's strom. Let me try one more thing, Yes it's beyond miserable. Yes, I will be flying on a school bus with wings crammed in a middle seat next to someone flying for prison transfer and someone that converted their food stamps to airfare, but it will likely land me in Chicago safely...and if not my family will fly free for like (a hero's death.)

$150 later I am booked and I am fucking geeking out. All my anxiety about the trip lifted, nervous energy converted to complete and total happiness. And it really has nothing to do with the fact that I will probably end up in my old frat's courtyard with my shirt off beer showering a bunch of people that don't know who I am. It isn't the fact that I think I am going to take an Alpha Phi Sophomore up to the chapter room and shack with her on my air mattress. It isn't the fact that I won't wait in line at a college bar because I used to tip well. It used to be about that, but Indiana is just who I am.

Every year the window closes more and more. I can rationalize it all I want, but I'm really forcing it this year. I'm still covered as a "student" I think under my parents' insurance and IU hasn't revoked my webmail yet. And there are still like 4 guys at IU that I know, but it's about getting out of the real world for 48 hours and being a kid again. Sure, I live my life like an immature untitled little twat, but I still bust my ass at my job and I'm largely isolated from my friends and family. Some choose their reunions in Hawaii or Mexico, let's get the gang back together and relive some good times. Well I choose Bloomington, IN. And I'm not fucking sorry.

Some day I may make it back to the midwest. LA is nowhere to raise a family. It's a place to have an awesome time while you are youngish. Kenilworth is a place to raise a family. Fishers is a place to raise a family. I'll take my wife and kids down to Bloomington and show them my old stomping grounds, I'll probably grab a few drinks at all of my old favorite bars, and we'll get a nice quiet room at the Hilton Garden Inn. It will be an extremely pleasant weekend. But that's not what this trip is about. This trip is about a redeye flight, carrying me, a frat tee and a headband embroidered "See Ya." This trip is about going on one last college bender. (Note: I will still continue benders but I believe that post 25 the location is universally switched to Vegas) Sometimes you just need a break from social norms and societal expectations, and this is the perfect excuse for it. In case you forgot, this weekend won an Oscar, and I'm thinking if you followed me around this time and taped it...that might too.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


The other day I was sitting in a "collective" waiting room while my friend picked up some "medicine" for "his treatment."During my wait I decided to kill some time by reading the journalistic equivalent of High Times. It is utterly fascinating. Here are a few things I learned that I would like to share with you.
They use all this crazy jargon, like "collective" "donate" "patient" "treatment." They either take this whole legalized marijuana thing super serious, or they just make sure they word things to keep themselves out of trouble. Let me give you a quick guide to the legal pot thing in Cali.

Collective- is more or less the pot shop. You have to show ID and a scrip from a doctor to gain admittance to the weed room where you...
Donate- for some strange reason they don't use the word "buy" it's like you donate money to the pot shop and they give you weed or something...but hey, I've heard the weed becomes tax free.
Doctor- technically this guy has an MD but he probably got it from the University of America in Grand Cayman. This is the guy that fucked around in college but was able to get into a one year master's program to get his grades up a little bit and finally leave the country but practice medicine on some sort of technicality. This guy takes your blood pressure, talks to you for 5 minutes and then gives you a medical marijuana prescription. $300 STRAIGHT CASH HOMIE.
Patient- You are not a guy smoking drugs, you are a patient using medication.
Edible- This is like a brownie or some pot infused thing that you eat and get high.

Ok so you can figure it out from there. I want to reiterate, I am not a "patient under treatment protected by California proposition 148" or however the fuck they self-identify. I don't even like weed. But I want to share this story with everyone because it is fascinating and it is all a huge joke.

So, I'm sitting there in the waiting room leafing through a magazine as a motley crew of herbal enthusiasts (that's alliteration mothafuckas...well maybe's close) went past a security checkpoint and were buzzed into the cave of wonders. It's an eclectic mix of bros, beach bums, hipsters, more or less what you would expect. However, what is far more interesting than the people, is the operation itself. I was leafing through the magazine and the words "Happy Hour" caught my eye. I was thinking, "No way, a pot friendly bar?" Oh no, happy hour is 2 for 1 grams Sunday 3-5. You have to be fucking kidding me. I thought Steak n Shake's half price milkshakes from 2-4am was an interesting gimick, but someone figured out how to capitalize on this with drugs.

But that was just the tip of the iceberg...First time customer bonus...6 gram eighth. (I'm told that is irregularly large) They even have fucking 2 dollar Tuesdays. Pick up an edible of your choice at regular price and get the 2nd for $2! Let me give you a brief list of things they have put pot in for those of you who haven't been to Amsterdam: brownies, cupcakes, tea bags, popcorn, rice crispie treats, GOLDFISH (ya mom won't say you can have them every day now) It's ludicrous.
Side note: There is an entire generation this will never know the proper spelling of ludicrous because of fucking Dj Cris Lubba Lubba from Atlanta Georgia. I find this interesting. The fall-out from rapper Fabolous is not expected to be as severe.
Customer loyalty programs? Ohhhh youuu betcha! (Anyone see Game Change? It's pretty good) I initially thought customer loyalty would be shit because of such a generous offering for new customers. Some collectives were offering 2 free joints and 2 free edibles in addition to the 6 gram eighth. But these customer loyalty programs were paying better rewards than airline credit cards in the 90's.
Sample- This is from a collective in North Hollywood.
2nd Visit- Choice 2 free joints, grinder or tshirt.
3rd Visit- Choice 2 free joints, free gram, free bowl
4th visit- Free eighth or vaporizer

Like really? I didn't read the fine print, there may be a minimum purchase amount or the quality of giveaways could be shit, but that sounds like a super generous rewards program. I put myself into extreme debt with my Chase credit card every year and when I tell them to pony up with the rewards I get like $80 cash. I should just get my weed card and start reselling their drugs and then start pawning off the rewards items on Craigslist.

I also find it interesting to imagine if this whole idea of "customer service" could be applied to every industry, even illegal ones. I've heard the staff in this industry is across the board awesome, they are probably just pumped that they are doing what makes them happy, slanging weed for a living under the protection of some broken ass law. Could the same work if you decriminalized heroin?

Heroin salesman: How can I help you man?
Legalized Junkie: I'm looking for a fix, what do you recommend?
HS: Well the flatline OG will knock you unconscious but the black tar dream will have you tweaking for a full 15 minutes.
LJ: You know I'm really just looking to take a nap and dream about spheres, flatline it is.
HS: May I offer a suggestion sir? If you wait 9 minutes, it will be happy hour and we can double your order for free and throw in 2 free needles!

Furthermore, what interests me is that the proponents of this legalized marijuana thing appear to be dead serious about the legitimacy of it. I don't know if they brainwashed themselves into thinking that this is some all important industry and they don't want a bunch of potheads ruining it for them because they are "patients under treatment from a legitimate doctor." I have heard that you are ostracized from the medical community if you get your scripp from one of the shady docs on the Venice boardwalk. I just want to shake these people and be like "what the fuck is wrong with you, you are getting away with cheating the system just acknowledge it and enjoy it" but hipsters have to have a stupid opinion about everything.

It leads back to a fundamental question I have been wondering about for quite some time. Are we living in a time that different from the 1960's? Our music is dominated by festivals that are attended by thousands of reckless youth getting high on marijuana and other such drugs. The Beatles are really popular, there is a first in office (Catholic/African-American) and we as a generation are struggling to find what will ultimately define us.

I had the idea to write this post after listening the The Beatles song "Help" I had never really listened to the lyrics before and wrote it off as a poppy tune from the Beatles early career. I did a little research on it and the story behind the song is that John was getting fat, was so fucked up on drugs that he had no idea what he was doing with his life and the pressure of fame was really weighing heavily on him. I think it is a fitting song for a generation in flux though. Some people figure out their calling sooner than others, some spend a lot of time in flux. There needs to be a name for that post college hangover before you really commit to being a contributing member of society. I'm still in that rut, I rage, have no long term goals or aspirations, live in the moment but manage to hold on to a corporate job which I excel at. It takes a long time to find out what is going to ultimately make you happy, but until then we exist with our head in the clouds with dreams beyond our means until someone or something helps us get our feet back on the ground.

Some people my age have it figured out by now, some may never figure it out. Some people will go work at marijuana collectives until the DEA puts them out of business (or the government wises up, makes it legal and taxes the FUCK out of it /Still fiscally conservative) Everyone goes through a quarterlife crisis, just remember to make it out some day.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Douchiest Bars in America

Douche-bags are hygienic products; I take that as a compliment. Thank you.
Typically I like Complex Magazine. Their “content for men” is pretty cool and I often find myself stumbling across one of their articles when I get tangled up in the interwebs. That said, it is well known that Complex is a cheater. When you make top 10, top 25 lists, it is blatant pandering to the classic middle American who doesn’t have the desire/time to read 1000 words of heated opinion. No fuck that, give me a scrolling slide show with 25 pictures and 25 sentences. I suppose that’s fine. They blog for a living, for money, and those 25 slides, which will generate 25 hits and close to a dollar from Google Ad sense for each reader to go through the show…well that adds up to a winning combination.

But the content can be and often is shit. Bored idiots at work blindly scroll through the article that takes them 2 minutes. Then these fools run around reporting this ill conceived article as gospel to anyone who will listen.

“We must NEVER go to John Barleycorn ever again, Complex rated it the douchiest bar in AMERICA!!!!”

Kind of like how I will never order merlot again after seeing Sideways.

“If she orders Merlot, I’m fucking leaving.”
(Fun fact: the merlot market crashed in 2004 after the release of that movie, sales in 2005 were down 40% it is just now returning to form, never underestimate the power of an Alexander Payne flick)

 It’s whatever. I make lists sometimes too because I know that my conceited dribble must grow tiresome after a while and also because I want to attract more readers that don’t have a full 10 minutes to listen to my ranting.  Lots of blogs impose this format, it’s like quick cuts in a movie trailer, it just looks good.

Ok, now that I have given you a little peak into the blogging world I want to take issue with some of the content in a series of lists Complex has coined “The Douchiest Bars in America.” Certainly you have seen these posted on Facebook with “haha, can’t disagree” or “bro we are totally douchebags!” I personally have read the lists for New York, Los Angeles and Chicago and I have spent significant time in about 90% of the listed bars. Now, I’m not arguing that I am not a douche, because I think most people would agree that I certainly am. What I want to know is how did this one person (girl in this instance) measure said douchiness of the aforementioned bars? Let’s take a deeper dive and find out.

After reading the meager explanations for each bar listed, it becomes pretty clear that Lizzy D (the author) really hates bros and immediately associates them with douchiness. In the Chicago edition she really phones it in by listing about half of the Wrigleyville bars and complaining about finding drunken bros acting obnoxiously after skipping work and going to a Cubs day game. Well, what the fuck did you expect Lizzy? The people that go to Cubs games are notorious for a sense of entitlement and obscene wealth. Yet you blame the bars for pandering to this crowd? They’re just trying to make a dime…and there is nothing douche about live band karaoke at the Cubby Bear after a Wednesday night game.

So whatever, they missed the mark on Chicago. They really couldn’t figure out what was their standard for bar douchiness so they seemingly listed the city’s most popular watering holes taking a spattering of the best of river north, Lincoln park and Wicker park. At least I’ll probably agree with them on L.A. god knows there are enough pretentious Hollywood clubs around here to make a top 50 list…but instead they pick on the UCLA bars? Don’t go here unless you are a drunken frat guy trying to plow a catatonic sorority girl before she vomits on you? Who the fuck do you think goes to college bars? Frat guys that want to fuck sorority girls (and me…but it’s a “work” thing) Like are you that pathetic that you couldn’t find enough “bro” bars in LA that you had to pick on college bars for being too full of youthful shenanigans? She even picked on 3 of my Venice/Santa Monica bars, her overarching argument is that they are “too crowded and too loud” aka too fun.

I now have a working theory that all female writers are vapid whores. I don’t know if the whole “Sex and the City” thing gave them an empowerment trip or if they have been watching too many promos for Lena Dunham’s new show “Girls,” but I just think that female scribes (especially those living in New York) now think it is socially acceptable to get down with any swinging dick and then chalk it up to a life experience that will make their writing more “real and edgy.” But then comes the inevitable slut’s guilt in which you blame the entity of “bro” for all of your problems, hence the list “The 25 douchiest bars in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles” should more likely be called, 25 bars where you are going to find the type of guy who will fuck you and not call in the morning.”

It may come as a cop out that I play the “scorned woman card” on all three of these authors. Sure it is very possible that they had bad experiences with frat guys or they think they are too mature and over that scene, but I guess that all leads to one fundamental question: What do you define as fun? It may be immature but I still go to the bar to get fucking lit. I have even more fun when everyone else is as drunk as me. I have even more fun when I bring a girl home and can’t hear her telling me her name again in the morning because my ears are still ringing because the music in the bar was so fucking loud. That’s fun for me. That is why I go out. If I wanted to have interesting conversation with some intriguing people I would host a dinner party and make fun cocktails. But that’s not what I consider fun, I’m 25 I like to rage.

So next time I’m in Chicago, I’ll probably be at McFadden’s (making me a double douche, because the NYC location made the list too.) When I’m here in LA, I’ll be drinking at Cabo Cantina because they literally put 12 shots in those giant margaritas and that’s the kind of thing that I like, and when I’m in New York I will be drinking at Bro J’s acting like a big old “douche” while you sit in a dark ultralounge across the street and talk about how mainstream and lame it is to have fun.