Theatre Etiquette: Pick Up Your Trash

I went to a theater show last night which was great but I have to complain about all the crap the audience left by their seats. If a showcase, put together by hard working folks, offers you free (you don’t know how hard it is for me to refrain from typing in caps right now) food, wine, and water, why not clean up after yourself?

I wasn’t even involved in the show but somebody has to speak up against today’s lazy, zombie audiences. There were half-eaten burritos on the floor, a wine spill the size of an adult raccoon, cups scattered as if they had legs to carry themselves home, napkins everywhere except on the wine spill, empty beer bottles callously separated from the empty souls that created them, and programs (which aren’t cheap) strewn about like cigarette butts at a Phish concert.

Why do people do this? Most shows I’ve cleaned up after have a ridiculous amount of trash, even when a trash can is by the door on the way out. Movie theaters are worse. People just leave all their crap by their seats, overturned popcorn buckets and soda cup husks, confident that the cost of admission relieves them from personal responsibilty.

Does anybody else see the ramifications of this entitlement to litter? Are we that lazy? Do we expect others to clean up after ourselves? Can we work with each other instead of having a phony sense that others should work for us? Is littering cool if everyone else does it? When do the adults show up?

I have littered countless times in the past, but I’m just now getting that trash is a responsibility. We dispose of so much, why do we expect others to deal with it? It’s just us here. Sure people have jobs to pick up trash, but that doesn’t make them our babysitters. Am I nuts? Is it too much to ask for everyone to take responsibility for their own garbage?

New Year’s Resolutions

It’s that time of the year again, New Year’s Resolution time, where I take a look at all the things I lack, all the bad decisions I’ve made, and everything that is wrong with me and try to fix it all with a hastily written to do list. It’s time to question my happiness, health, and good fortune, and make promises that will only extend to the end of this blog post.  Hey, I’m just being patriotic, the U.S. economy depends on my wanting to be better than myself so I can buy things to improve the self esteem.  Fulfilling New Year’s resolutions means self contentment. Self contentment means less impulse purchases.  And less impulse buys means less jobs.  Of course it would be funny to list a bunch of hilarious resolutions like “Resolution 1: Win the lotto! Resolution 2: Write Better Resolutions!” like I always do, but that would be breaking…

  • Resolution 1: Be honest.  I am tired of my fake laugh.  I do it to be polite. I do it to disarm.  I do it all the time.  So does everyone else. But its hurting my face and throat. And I think giving me wrinkles and migraines. It’s not even a laugh, it’s like rapid shallow breathing.  Who are we fooling?  There has to be another way of responding to your boss’s “Happy Friday” than a soft “Ha ha ha, finally.”  Why do honesty and politeness have to be mutually exclusive?
  • Resolution 2: Exercise, take a vitamin, just one lousy vitamin, and go outside.  Seriously, my medical history is littered with things like cancer and glaucoma.  Why do I sit on my duff all day and forsake vitamins just so I can catch another thirty seconds of my Facebook newsfeed?
  • Resolution 3: Like, only check Facebook once a day. Seriously, what is wrong with me?  I don’t have friends anymore, I have Facebook–crude text representations of various people in my life.  It’s like Invasion of the Body Snatchers where those I care about have been replaced by tagged photos.  The amount of times I have thought of doing something just so I can post it on Facebook has finally exceeded the limit.  Facebook won’t launch my comedy career, Facebook won’t cause others to adopt my political causes, and Facebook won’t relaunch friendships.  I can’t think of the last person I friended on Facebook that I had an improved friendship with.  Friendships dissolve for a reason, to strengthen the relationships we cherish and keep Facebook in business.  Besides I figured out how to update all my statuses with Twitter.
  • Resolution 4: Drive my car. I haven’t driven my car since November 2011.  I live in Los Angeles.  Something is not right here.  I love that car, yet I neglect it.  I should take a picture of my driving it and post it on Facebook.  Sure, gas should be preserved.  Sure, public transportation saves money, the environment, and needless hours in commuter traffic.  But I should hit the road and go to the beach or something.
  • Resolution 5: Call my friends on the phone.  If I had more friends in L.A., I’d resolve to hang out more, but since most of my friends are still on the East Coast, I think I should pick up the phone at least once a month.  Writing two sentence emails to check-in has done nothing more than give me whiplash at work from checking to see if my boss has caught me on Gmail.
  • Resolution 6: Only eat sugar late at night.  This is only a problem while working in an office where treats are pushed harder than liquor on highway billboards. Starting off the day with sweet breads, chocolate, and corn syrup dipped danishes has never once not made me nervous and depressed for the rest of the day.  STOP IT. Drink water, have a banana, and if you have sugar make it close to bedtime so the blood sugar drops when your consciousness does.  Seriously why the office treats?
  • Resolution 7: Watch more episodes of Barney Miller.  I love that show.
  • Resolution 8: Spend more than 30 seconds each day playing with my cat.  The poor guy is lonely.  And I have not patience to teach him Facebook.
  • Resolution 9: Read a book before buying a new one.  Los Angeles already has a library, I don’t need to maintain an auxiliary one in my apartment.  Anyone want to borrow a Tolkien book or The Idiot’s Guide to Past Life Regression?
  • Resolution 10: Write in the morning for 10 minutes or more.  Short stories, grocery lists, Magneto Jokes, anything. There’s something to putting down some scattered thoughts on paper first thing in the day.  It clears the head, puts goals in perspective, and
  • Resolution 11: Stop thinking you have to list everything in threes.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: NYC Salt Reduction

I recently learned that New York City was trying to reduce salt in processed foods to improve cardiovascular health.  That sounds good.  There probably is too much of that stuff in our food as well as all that sugar crap that’s in everything.

Want to cut sugar out of your diet?  Well too bad if you like buying things that come in boxes or jars.  Here’s some lettuce and a raw oyster.  Enjoy your new life.

But back to New York City’s campaign to reduce salt intake because of its affect on our health.  Here’s what I don’t get:  If the city wants to regulate things to make us healthier, if the city wants us to have healthier hearts, then the answer ain’t cutting out the salt, the answer is making everyone get off their salted ham rump roast asses.  Or better yet, the answer is letting everyone get off their salted rump roast asses.

How many hours a day does everyone spend sitting down?  I currently work 9 damn hours a day at a temp job.  Throw in three hours to commute (my fault) and I spend 12 hours a day sitting down.  Lucky for me, this is a temp job.  I only have to do it for a few more weeks.  Unlucky for people who don’t have such a temporary situation.  How many people in this city sit for 9-12 hours a day?  You want New Yorkers to be healthier?  Limit the work day.  Limit the amount of days people need to go to work.  It makes no sense that with all the computers and stupid iPhones that people have to be in an office for forty to sixty hours a week.  We constantly are inventing labor saving devices and we just use them as an excuse to do more labor.   Screw that.  Let’s give it a rest and get outside.  Less work hours will mean more time to exercise, more time to deal with stress, more time to enjoy things.  You know who’s healthy, people who are happy.  You know who gets sick?  People who work too hard.  You ever work real hard for a long period of time and then take a week off?  What happens?  You get sick.

The stupidest part of the whole deal is that there are huge chunks of the day when people aren’t really working but a required to be at their suicide machines of a work environment.  Why do we have the need to be at a job for 8 hours (in many cases more) a day?

Get off of that seat and go outside, New York.  That’s what the city should be helping us to do.  Salt is the least of our worries.  The city that never sleeps has turned into the city that always sits.

How to Correctly Answer Standard Interview Questions


I recently had a job interview.  I was asked  a series questions off of an internet printout.  I was told by the interviewers that if they had “decided to pursue my candidacy” I would have been called in by now.  What is my loss is now the internet’s gain.

From my failure I have learned how to correctly answer these standard interview questions:

Tell us about yourself.

  • I’m committed to finding the killer of my child.  I have already tracked him through five states and believe him now to be working here. in this poorly ventilated office building.  This job will give me an excellent opportunity to sniff him out.  By day I will just be at my desk, doing the work, but by night I will use the knowledge that I gleen from this mild mannered position to search the city rooftop by rooftop for justice using a small cadre of gadgets such as a grapple gun. a helicopter that fits into a suitcase, and boots that enable me to creep silently through the alleys.  That’s how I would describe myself. An avenger of the night forever keeping his ears to evil’s footfalls.  Take this watch, if you are ever in danger whisper “Kimota” into it and I shall appear so long as it is not during my fifteen minute break.

Tell us about your experience with data entry.

  • The best years of my life.

How would your former boss describe you?

  • That smelly temp.

Why did you leave your previous position?

  • I got in too deep.

What is your greatest accomplishment?

  • Discovering the ancient city of El Dorado, the City of Gold!  It was there that I learned data entry.
  • Giving birth to twins and still keeping my figure.

Are you comfortable making cold calls?

  • I consider life a giant cold call.  But to answer your question, no.  That sounds awful.

Why are you interested in this position?

  • It seems a great entry level position for someone like me who’s always dreamed of becoming an astronaut.
  • Maybe it’s this plastic furniture or the rude receptionist or maybe the 20 year old carpeting, but most likely it is because I am unemployed.

When are you available to start?

  • Unfortunately, not anytime soon.

What are your strengths?

  • Movie trivia, conspiracy factoids, and comic book lore.

What are your weaknesses?

  • Joan Osburne songs and chocolate.  If it’s time to work, keep those things away or I will be lost in paradise.
  • I work too hard.  I hope you have someone with lobster claw meat hooks that can tear me away from the computer because it’s hard to get me to leave, especially when I’m pursuing my passion, data entry.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

  • After year 3, I will have sewn my oats and gotten all the office affairs out of my system.  So by year 5 I will fully be reduced to a stoic, awkward, recluse of a coworker who dutifully does his job but shies away from interaction.  At my desk will be a Kermit the Frog dish stocked with peppermints and Libertarian propaganda.

This position requires data entry of dates and times of events.  it is very important that the dates and times are accurate.  Can you accurately enter dates and times into a computer?

  • I can only promise to do my best.

Complaints: Pasta Sauce is a Hot Load of Crap


If I learned anything in 2009 it’s that pasta sauce bought in a store, in a crummy jar, is a hot load of crap. This just underlies my theory that everything in this world is a total scam.

This revelation began when my friend Anwar cooked an amazing pasta dish. I asked him what he used for sauce and he said that the sauce was just tomatoes in a food processor. And it was delicious. More delicious than any crap pasta sauce bought in a dirtbag grocery store.  I’ll tell you that much right here and now.

I was reminded by Anwar’s sauce when my girlfriend Carrie suggested I put in some canned tomatoes with my rice and beans. This suggestion was also delicious.

So, the next time I went to the grocery store I walked right by the scamjob pasta sauce aisle and went straight towards the canned vegetables.  I found myself a nice can of diced tomatoes.  And it was about half as much as any bogus jar of rancid Ragu or cruddy Classico.  I’m saving money and getting a tastier meal?  Pinch me.

I’ve discovered that I can get a big can of diced tomatoes for about $1.29-1.79 if I look hard enough, and it’s well worth the effort, especially if you add in some chopped up sausage.  It flavors the tomatoes right up.  You can also add your own spices, like Mrs. Dash or Basil or whatever sets you off.  Maybe add some oil.  It’s delicious.  And the best part?  None of that horse flop high fructose corn syrup will touch your lips.  And the large cans of chopped tomatoes last a lot longer than those bum $3-$7  jars of the prepackaged junk that the food companies try to push on us. 

A word to the wise, don’t get the cans of crushed tomatoes or the cans of whole tomatoes.  I know the cans of whole tomatoes are cheaper and you’re thinking you can just dice them at home.  It’s not the same.  And the crushed tomatoes are like cans of red sludge.  The diced toamtoes are beautiful and have a proper place atop of your favorite pasta.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: Governor’s Island Sucks!


The free boat ride is cool.  And it’s nice to see the city from afar.  And it’s quiet and has a little bit of history… but other than that Governor’s Island sucks!  There’s pavement everywhere.  Not only that but it doesn’t look maintained.  “Picnic Point” feels like an industrial park.  Plus every five minutes you get bombarded with an off key rendition of Godspell from some over-funded piece of public art (save the money to clean the place up, Governor’s Island).  You can rent a bike but what’s so special about biking on some crappy pavement for twenty minutes (the island’s not that big)? I can do that at home.  It would be awesome to be there at night, see the sunset, see the city lit up… but oh wait, they kick you of the crappy island before 7:00 pm. Governor’s Island sucks!

The northern part of Central Park is a much better time.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: Hitler Moustache on Adam’s Apple



I’ve had a beard since 2006.  The only problem it has presented is what to do about the neck.  The subject of men’s sub-facial hair seems to be taboo.  Everyone’s different and no one wants to talk about it.  Some dudes barely any hair past the jaw, some guy’s facial hair keeps growing all the way down to their Chewbacca ankles.  With me it dips just a little below the Adam’s Apple, giving me a nice crop of neck hair.  I never know quite what to do with it.  There aren’t any books, role models, or Bible verses to direct me to the proper etiquette.  If I let it grow out it looks a little too “crazy man in the woods” if I shave  it all off it looks a little too “funny looking man with a roll of hot dogs under his chin.”  So, lately I’ve been trimming it on a regular basis.  It’s hard trimming the neck and keeping an eye the mirror, so I just run the trimmer over it.  Zip-Zip.  Recently I noticed that I always miss the tip of the Adam’s Apple.  I usually realize this when I’m talking to someone and my hands wander from stroking my beard in thought to stroking my Adam’s Apple Hitler Moustache in horror. “Crapola!  I have a Hitler Moustache on my Adam’s Apple!”  My self-esteem crumbles to a level not seen since the Face Rash & Pimple Years (1991-1994).

Then I started thinking, after World War II the Hitler Moustache kind of dropped from below the nose to below the lower lip, like a “soul patch” or “flavor saver.”  I think my Adam’s Apple Hitler Moustache is just an evolution, a natural progression.  We have successfully left that ass’s nose  and history has found its way to my neck.  I just wish it had a better name than the Adam’s Apple Hitler Moustache such as the “Throat Patch,” “Neck Stash,” or… what am I doing?  

It’s an Adam’s Apple Hitler Moustache!   Just shave it, Murphy.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: Who Let Those Damn Kids in the Comic Book Store!!??


I was in the comic book store the other day, picking up my weekly groceries of literature when I saw a couple kids running around.  The nerve of some parents!  A wave of discomfort washed over me and several of my comic book shopping colleagues, all men in their thirties to forties, as we had to move away from the racks to accommodate comic book buyers twenty years our junior .  There’s no place for children in comic book stores.  Comic Books are complicated serialized stories full of moral debate, modern philosophies, and exaggerated physicalities using cartoon pictures and word bubbles.  Clearly, an adult medium.  What is an eight year old doing in the store, other than to make the rest of us feel a sudden sense of “Oh crap, maybe I’m too old for this stuff”???  Who let those damn kids in the comic book store?  They should be in McDonald’s, getting fat.  If I’m paying $2.99 a pop, I want velvet ropes and a bouncer at my comic book shop.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: Things I’d Like To Write On Facebook But Don’t Have The Guts

Dear Facebook,

While I check on you several times an hour and enjoy seeing what acquaintances from five years ago are up to, I must admit that I think you’re a bad influence. Not only do you take away from time when I could be seeing my friends in person or attending events that I am continuously invited to, but you put too much information about my friends, former classmates, and acquaintances in my face. I often times have impulses to write comments on people’s photos, profiles, and various postings that I know would be inappropriate, but can’t seem to shake.

So in the spirit of transparency that is sweeping the nation, here are some items that I’d like to call “Things I’d like to write on Facebook but don’t have the guts and will now type on my blog out of context.”

  • Your wedding photos look great. They make me feel like I was there even though you didn’t invite me.
  • What happened to your face? You looked different 20 years ago. I can’t tell if you’ve had cosmetic surgery or were in an accident or are in the witness protection program (and if so, why the facebook page?).
  • I can’t believe you married that guy. That’s crazy.
  • I hope your continual status updates referring to your daily booze fueled lunches serve you as a public record of your substance problem.
  • Your baby looks miserable.
  • I’m blocking your profile feed as I grow weary of the latest news regarding Dancing with the Stars.
  • Your many status updates regaling us with your accomplishments have left me bitter and resentful.
  • I know we know each other but are we really friends?
  • Can I borrow five large?
  • You’ve taken enough quizzes, please stop getting to know yourself. You might benefit from an organized religion, a meditation regiment, or perhaps a mild to moderate cult.
  • Since you’ve moved out of the city, I see no context for keeping up with you.
  • Adding you as friend hasn’t resulted in the business connection and revenue for which I had hoped.
  • I voted for Nader.

*Please note, this blog entry was written for entertainment purposes only, any similarities between my facebook friends, living or dead, is merely coincidental. By reading this blog you agree to settle all disputes by a government appointed arbiter and not on Facebook.

Jeremiah’s Complaints: Duane Reade Antacid Tablets, Why Must You Taste Like Sweet, Sweet Candy?

Dear Duane Reade Brand Assorted Fruit Flavored Ultra Strength Antacid Tablets,

Why must you taste so much like sweet, sweet candy? I bought you a while back when I was having a rough time with my stomach after eating some beef. Little did I know that your soothing chalk-like texture would give birth to a temptation of fruity sugary delight. You taste just like a roll of Smartees, those delicious, exotic candies that I used to find in goody bags containing plastic robot toys and lick-on tattoos from the Far East.

As I enjoy your unparalleled offerings of flavor, I scan the back of your bottle only to read that I can not consume more than 8 of you in a day. Why? What will happen? A level of ecstasy that the U.S. government must not permit? An explosion of the stomach? Perhaps both?

I refrain for fear of embarrassment. What would people say if my stomach exploded because I couldn’t stop eating Fruity Antacid? However, I am pleased to read that you can also be used as a calcium supplement, so taking one (or two) of you (twice) a day could be viewed by onlookers as a step towards maintenance in my advancing age.

Reader, if this entry doesn’t seem like a complaint. It is, for I am complaining about the sheer flavorful delight that I can only find in a cheap bottle of antacid and this makes me feel shame.

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