Thursday, December 29, 2005

Taking the High Road on the Low Road

Oh boy. This is a tough one. I guess, fundamentally, it's a question of journalistic integrity. The blogger, as quasi-journalist, must examine each blog post to determine if it is ethically sound. The blogger has an obligation to the blog's mission statement, to the blog's readership. An obligation to present newsworthy or entertaining material.

Ours is an age where the legitimacy of real journalism is in question; an age where the mainstream media has failed to serve the public in its stated objective as watchdog over power. Be it Cokie Roberts gushing over men in uniform during a debate on whether to go to war; be it Dan Rather overcompensating for his pathetic statement on Letterman ("Bush is my president. Where he tells me to line up, I line up"), by rushing a less-than-air-tight piece on Bush's National Guard experience, inadvertently destroying the legitimacy of all reporting on that subject; be it the antics of Le Circus du Fair et Balanced; examples of the media's failure are many. Furthermore, it is an age where the peripheral media (the second tier of "legitimacy") has failed to produce anything remotely objective. The peripheral media, will of course, point out that there is no such thing as objectivity, that all perspectives are necessarily a point of view, either completely subjective or intentionally bastardized from their subjectivity in the interest of attaining the mythic moniker of objectivity. As if this argument excuses their naked agenda-pushing.

So where does the blogger stand in this mess? Without the pressures of journalistic legitimacy, the blogger is free to sift through that which floats across the web and pick out that which might be of interest to the blog's readership. Like the satirist dodging the constraints of truth by taking shelter in Comedy (and by calling Tucker Carlson a "dick"), the blogger dodges the constraints of legitimate journalism by taking shelter in selective dissociation with the institution of Journalism. This, of course, is bullshit. It is the kid who is shooting hoops and says "I'm not trying, I'm not trying, I'm not trying" every time he misses and then gets in your face and screams "BOO YAH!!" when he banks a lucky hook shot. You're either playing the game or you're not. You either take responsibility for your obligation as a purveyor of news or you don't. Well, my friends, I'm playing the game.

Now that I am putting myself out there and taking on the responsibilities of the journalist, I am brought back to my current dilemma and the myriad of questions it produces: is something newsworthy just because it exists? Am I a failure as a purveyor of the news if I do not pass something along because I find it to be in questionable taste? And if I don't pass such an item along, have I not chosen to project my ethics on you, the readers of Von Trapper Keeper? If I recognize the ethical problems with presenting some troubling material, does that mean I'm ignoring the ethical obligations inherent in journalism? Is it perhaps shoddy journalism to even have this debate, rather than to simply and dispassionately present the news? Well, there's a time for debate and there's a time for action. Here, without further ado, is a shocking article (with photo) regarding Rasputin's genitals from Do with this information what you will.

Stuart Davis, sports fan

In talking about his influences, Stuart Davis said, "Some of the things that I'm interested in are athletics, provided that I'm not the one doing them, ..." Go on, Stu, you crazy sports fan. In the same interview, Stu said that he started incorporating his signature in the composition of his pieces because he found the convention to be "an annoyance ... unessential ... an incongruity". Right on, Stu. Fuck that shit.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Seasons Greetings

Seas Greets from my bunker in the Von Trapper Keeper stronghold of Pittsfield Mass. I was going to post a nice little commentary on the media-created War on Christmas and the ACLU's involvement and how it undermined their credibility when they needed to be a strong voice in the debate over the NSA's spying which went public about a week later, but screw that. I was also going to present my analysis of the Damon deal which I have been silent about in this forum so far, but screw that. It's Christmas goddamnitall. In an effort to help everyone through the holidays, I'm just going to throw up a few funny clips that you may or may not have heard.

The first is for you fans of A Few Good Men (via

The second you may have seen over the past week. It's the Chroncles of Narnia rap from SNL (via

And the third is another SNL short. (via youtube).


Thursday, December 22, 2005

The Philosopher vis-a-vis The Blogger

The following is an excerpt from an email from my friend, Sparkles (all names have been changed to protect the identity of the players):

How's your holiday going? Oh - nevermind, I'll just read your blog.

Real conversation that recently transpired. Francisco and I were eating dinner at "Not Your Average Joe's" in Beverly and there was this table next to us with 10 college students having dinner. So we are totally eavesdropping on their convo and it turns out they are all philosophy majors and they want to argue theories at dinner...

FRANCISCO: What kind of asshole majors in Philosophy? What are you going to do, graduate and become a philosopher?
SPARKLES: Dan Nolan was a philosophy major.
FRANCISCO: Is he a philosopher?
SPARKLES: No, but he does have a blog.
OUR WAITER: Laughter

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Business Casual with a Bullet

My business casual days are numbered for sure, and if today is representative of those days it's going to be a fucking celebration and a half when I split this joint. My mood today was making the Misanthropy post seem downright chipper. Some bullet points:

- Like a shark can smell blood from miles away, Shark Hunter Guy can apparently pick up the scent of disparaging words floating in the World Wide Web. There had been a sharp decrease in SH comments after I posted about them (here and here). I even caught myself about to bait him once. But I got one today. The old standby: "shark hunter."

- Business Casual TODD (Tip Of Da Day): Contrary to popular belief, it is quite possible to be Business Casual whilst shaving every other day. Wear your nice shirt on the day you don't shave and it will cancel the scruff out. Let's review: Shaven + lower end of biz cazh = Unshaven + higher end of biz cazh.

- I may have angled myself into position to snag a severance package for my exit. It's not a done deal, so I don't want to jinx it, but we're right in the middle of a Reorg and I floated a little hypothetical question to my boss and he might be hooking me up. The tremendous upside: 10 weeks of pay and insurance. Now that's what I call an exit strategy. Tremendous downside: I need to work on seeing if I can make it sooner rather than later. They're still sorting out the Reorg and it might take a couple months for any layoffs to take effect. The plan had been to drop the Quit Bomb on January 2nd and have my absolute last day be Jan 24, allowing me to roll into my 33rd birthday, biz-cazh-free. You don't want to be schleppin for the man on the first day of your Jesus year. Hopefully he can swing this mid to late January or early February at the latest. Pushing it into March would make me consider saying fuck it and just quitting. Seriously, that's how much I need to leave this job. I'd think about turning down 10 weeks of full pay if it meant having to be there an extra month. I'm losing it. So, if I get the Sever, that means that I don't even have to get a part time job until Julyish. I'd also be eligible for Unemployment, but I'm not sure if I'd do that. On the one hand, I feel like if you're able minded and bodied, you shouldn't be leaning on Unemployment; on the other hand, we are under the rule of Bush the Lesser, and I'd be happy to contribute to higher unemployment while he's in office. Either way, the Sever would be fucking fantastic. Oh, shit. Did I just jinx it?

- I'm watching the new Deal Or No Deal prime time game show right now, hosted by ... that's right, the voice of the Gremlins ... Howie Mandell. It's unbelievably stupid. And therefore I love it.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Von Trapper Keeper

The Sound of Music was on non-cable tv tonight and since it's one of the two namesakes of this weblog, I had to give it a good critical look so that I could write the definitive post. But, naturally, I switched the channel to catch the end of the Giants-Chiefs game during a commercial and missed the Maria Von Trapp's Meadow scene. Classic. Anyways, I'm not sure I've ever seen the movie in its entirety. A little heavier than I thought. I don't remember the whole Anschluss bit. Not exactly raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens. Also, am I the only one who thinks that Mother Abbess' version of "Climb Ev'ry Mountain" upstaged all Julie Andrews' bits? She brought the house down. That's about all I have to say about the movie. This blog's more about her meadow anyways.

As for the Trapper Keeper, well, what can I say. Everyone loves a good TK. As a Mead product, it put food on the Nolan Family Table. In Googleimaging "trapper keeper", I came across the following:

The Keeper. Apparently, according to "the Tightwad Gazette: 'The Keeper® seems to me to be the most appropriate option for most women, especially women who work outside the home.'" I have no further comment on this.

The Merrillville School Supply List. Why is it that only 3rd Grade Honors and 4th Grade Non-Honors students are allowed, in fact required, to have Trapper Keepers while the rest of the school is forbidden from having Trapper Keepers?

Friday, December 16, 2005

The Chistm - err - Holiday Party

Oh shit. I mean, this is good. I need to write for a bit to forestall the photos. Just back from the Fidelity Xmas Gaaalaaaa. Sufficiently hammered. Some observations:

• Enough with the Cirque du Soleil thing. So 2004.

• “the short woman who let’s slip a sly, mischievous, little giggle every time she says hi” told me I’m one of her “favorite people in a company full of assholes”, seven glasses of Chardonay in. I, wasted, am humbled. By “short”, I mean 4 foot 8ish? This 60ish Irish-American woman, originally from Central Square, once punched out a kid who was messing with her brother. The kid she knocked out later went to prison for killing someone. This lady kicks ass.

• The food was … average. Ok, there was the make-your-own bruschetta, sliced prime rib, sushi, etc., but it was a little too heavy on the pizza stands, chicken fingers, etc. It’s not like the Glory Days of 2000, with the troughs of shrimp.

• What else … ummmm … tons of douchebags.

Ok. enough. Fido owns this town. Can they get the three New England Patriots’ Lombardi trophies for their party? Of course. Can they get me to drink excessively and pose with them? Also yes. Can … ah forget it. Enjoy:

Yeah. I thought I had reached new levels of photographic creepiness with the Detroit Stalker photo, but this is something else. It started out as a puffed out chest shot but the photographer took it slightly after the exhale and it ended up looking like a photo that would (will?) be photocopied and stapled to every telephone pole in town.

[a note on the sweater: this is my official 2005/06 winter party sweater, so get used to it. Two insults of note from my co-worker Bill: "Dan, Jim Henson called. He's going to need the sweater back" and "Does that sweater itch? Because it did when I threw it out." Nicely played, Bill. Kudos. And Kudos again]

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

And ... let's move on.

Okay. I think we can call that my first official Bad Santa moment of the season. My lousy (or "crummy" as my mother would say) mood ended shortly after that post, when I got into a conversation on the T with a nice kid who was in a wheelchair and had MS. Nothing like seeing someone gracefully deal with a tragic situation to make you realize what a wanker you are. So, I don't hate all people. Just Skip Bayless. He's still a douchebag.

I just received my official credentials for the annual Fidelity Investments holiday gala. "Party" just doesn't capture it. I'm going to guess that they drop about a million bucks on this 4 hour affair on an average year. Last year, Cirque Du Soleil was there. Yes. This is not your standard bottle-of-grey-goose-in-the-conference-room affair (which is fortunate since our principal AV engineer recently got canned for nailing the AV vendor rep on one of our conference room tables). This year I was delighted to find out that I had won the lottery for a coveted pair of tickets to the Fidelity Follies, a whimsical revue put on by fellow employees. Hottest tickets in town. Well, actually, I didn't win the lottery for tickets to the actual Follies. I won the lottery for tickets to the simulcast of the Follies, to be aired in a conference room next to the auditorium. Wonder how much I could get on eBay for these babies. Because I plan on drinking Sam Lights and eating prime rib and shrimp until I yak all over my elevated business casual attire.

(*standing on the coat check counter, !_! metalhorns thrust high in the air !_!*)

"Suck it, you muthafuckas!!"

(*falling backward into a pile of fur coats, passing out*)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005


In the vein of one of my favorite communities from the increasingly less interesting Orkut, Misanthropy, I'd like to wax misanthropic for a minute. God, I fucking hate people. Is it the holidays? Is it this job? What is it. Why do they suck so bad. I had a 45 minute argument this morning with a "customer" immediately followed by a 45 minute argument with my boss about the argument.
And then I saw Max in South Station. In an apparent effort to get arrested so he'd have a reason to sue the cops, he started, at the top of his lungs, telling me his version of The Aristocrats, which included him smashing a clipboard over the head of a person who asked for his website, him doing unspeakable things to the man with the clipboard, while the man's family graphically fornicated with eachother. All this at typical Max volume, prompting a woman to come up to him and ask him if he knew how loud he was talking and if he knew that there were children around. I couldn't decide who I was more irritated by at that moment. Anyways, I empathize with this reader of Deadspin, who writes "Skip, I'd like to bash you over the head with this flaming crowbar covered in wasps". You're a douchebag, Skip Bayless. Go to hell.

ahhh. that's better.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

RIP, Richard Pryor

A comic giant. Richard Pryor was probably one of the 4 or 5 most influential comedians of all time. Needless to say, this mp3 from probably shouldn't be played at work: monkeys.

Friday, December 09, 2005

The Brentmeister General

This is a post about Ricky Gervais. But first, here's an excerpt from Gary Cherone's website:

"Never content to sit still or simply recycle his considerable musical success, Cherone's new musical offerings showcase the face and voice of a true artist in his prime. Collaborating with the production team Nero, Cherone's new music is a distinctive hybrid of soul, pop, rock, and folk. Masterful arrangements pair smooth chord changes with a funky backbeat, all anchored by Cherone's unmistakeable voice. His sexy, heartfelt, and self-assured vocals are the audio equivalent of a match lit close to the ear: immediate, engaging and impossible to ignore. The artist tackles lyrical themes that have inspired him throughout his songwriting career: life experiences, relationships, desire, loss, and the complexities of the people we meet in this world. Gary summons all the soul of his superlative band, and conjures up the exuberance and intimacy of a great live performance in each track."

ok, now that the palette is cleansed, on to Mr. Gervais, the comic genius behind David Brent and The Office (BBC version). First the past: Thanks to the San Francisco chapter of Von Trapper Keeper for this dandy. Is it real? I don't know, but it's great. And second, the present: I came across this link the other day for a free download of the first of Ricky's podcasts. I may have to subscribe to this through iTunes.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Valerie and Eddie, a Timeline

Modern couples come and go. The broken family is practically a rite of passage these days. But through it all for generation X/Y, there has been one pair that has been the rock steady, the teflon tandem that made us believe that maybe solitude isn’t our collective destiny. Today I shed a solitary tear. Not for the suffering in Iraq, not for the piss-poor state of the Boston Celtics’ defense and rebounding, not for … other shit. Today my salty secretion (the tear) drips to mourn the split-up of Valerie Bertinelli and Eddie Van Halen. From age 7 to 32, I looked to Valerie and Eddie for inspiration. Here is a little timeline of their time together and what was going on in my life and yours:

Val and Ed: Valerie meets Eddie backstage in Shreveport, LA.
Earth: A charismatic actor from California elbows his way past a benevolent peanut farmer to take over as leader of the free world.
Me: I get stuck in a chair while Mr. Murphy reads a story to my first grade class, and have to walk down the hall with a chair around my waist, past the 3rd graders, to the boiler room, where the janitor uses a welding torch to remove the chair.

Val and Ed: The lovebirds reach their career peaks (the final season of V-Bert’s “One Day at a Time” and Van Halen’s release of “1984”).
Earth: The Cold War reaches its bitchy peak, as Soviet Union withdraws from the summer Olympic Games in LA.
Me: I reach my geek peak, as my nutrition quiz team reaches the state finals and I discover Monty Python in the first of 20 some-odd viewings of Holy Grail.

Val and Ed: In his first attempt to lay off the bourbon, Eddie goes to rehab.
Earth: The Berlin Wall comes down.
Me: I win Junior Achievement President of the Year over my rival, Lance.

Val and Ed: Valerie gives birth to their only child, Wolfgang “Wolfie” Van Halen.
Earth: As apartheid ends in South Africa, Nelson Mandela is freed from prison.
Me: I graduate from high school and begin study at UMass.

Val and Ed: Eddie finally quits the sauce for good.
Earth: The Internet Architecture Board releases the Internet Official Protocol Standards and the US Supreme Court unanimously rules that most of the US Communications Decency Act (CDA) is unconstitutional. Porn proliferates like never before.
Me: I move into Pine Grove Trailer Park in Largo Florida and begin job as … “telemarketer”.

Val and Ed: After being diagnosed with tongue cancer, Eddie quits smoking, has a portion of his tongue removed, starts smoking again, and gets cancer again.
Earth: Y2K.
Me: The end of the Florida years, the beginning of the Boston years.

Val and Ed: Valerie files for divorce.
Earth: global strife.
Me: I work at a mutual fund company.

Welcome to the Club, Wolfie.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Arrested Development

After a long Monday at work (including the disturbing news that Saddam Hussein had a human meat grinder - *shudder*), I was delighted to find Arrested Development back on the air tonight. Definitely the funniest show on the tube these days. Well, the non-cable tube anyways. The few episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm that I've seen have cracked me up. I really hope that enough people start watching Arrested Development to convince Fox to keep it on the air. I mean that stupid Michael Rappaport show is profitable, but AD is not? It's enough to make you take a meat grinder to the American public. (too far?)

It's great to see Jason Bateman get his groove back too. And none too soon for me. Throughout my youth, I was told that I looked like a young Jason Bateman. But, more recently, I've been told that I evoke Norman Fell. I mean, how do you say something like that to a person? Nothing sparks an early onset mid-life crisis, like finding out you bear a resemblance to Mr. Roper. I mean, Ferley I could take. The man had style. But Stanley Roper drank warm milk before going to bed, for chrissake. If Arrested Development can stay on the air for another year or so, I may return to my Valerie's Family days form. Those were some days, right there!

(thanks to this place (?) for the roper art)

Friday, December 02, 2005


Apparently, there was a brief buzz about Derek Jeter moving from shortstop to center field, which came from a supposedly misinterpreted Joe Torre comment. I don’t want to regurgitate this whole article, since I agree with Bob Klapisch on most aspects of the whole situation. A few thoughts though: I think it would be a great idea. A-Scrod moves to his natural position at SS. They pick up or call up someone who can hit well and dump him in the less defensively challenging position of 3rd base (is Billy Mueller available? Is Drew Henson still alive?). And you get the ultimate gamer running your outfield. So, in a rovesque move, Torre accidentally floats the idea since you couldn’t really ask him to do it, and Jetes either goes for it or he doesn’t. I don’t blame him for not going for it, but just imagine if he volunteered to do it and seamlessly transitioned to a gold glove quality center fielder. His ultimate gamer status would be off the charts. You’d pretty much have to give him the MVP just for volunteering to do it.

Oh, that reminds me of some (and I know this is going to sound ridiculous) Jeter-doesn’t-get-enough-credit bitching I was doing yesterday to Dewy24 and Jimed (who apparently is neither a Blue Jays fan, nor a terrorist). Check out Jeter’s placement in the AL MVP voting in the 10 full seasons he’s played in MLB:

Year - Place in voting - First place votes
96 ---- didn't place ------- 0
97 ---- 24th -------------- 0
98 ---- 3rd --------------- 2
99 ---- 6th --------------- 1
00 ---- 10th ------------- 0
01 ---- 10th -------------- 0
02 ---- didn't place ------- 0
03 ---- 21st -------------- 0
04 ---- 13th -------------- 0
05 ---- 10th -------------- 0

In his entire career, only 3 voters (probably 2) thought he was the most valuable player in the AL. And you could only really say he was in the conversation once. But ask those same 28 voters who the MVP of the AL was over this 10 year stretch, and how many of them say Jeter? Now, I know the MVP game: it's all about the sexy stats and what Juan Gonzalez or whoever does in any given year, not the performance over a 10 year span. I'm just saying, has there ever been a player more valuable to a team as successful as the Yankees in a 10 year span and got less respect in MVP voting (and this is just for the AL, not league-wide like in the NBA)? If, for the sake of argument, you give him a 25 for the didn't place years, his average ranking in AL MVP voting is 14.7. It's a ridiculous award. As far as the actual award goes, there was zero question in any of the voters' heads about A-Rod being higher than Jeter in 2005, but I bet you there was also close to zero question about who was actually more valuable to the Yankees.

I also heard a rumor this morning that the Yankees may get Juan Pierre out of the Marlins fire sale. There’s your center fielder, there’s your leadoff man, allowing Jeter to stay at short and move back to his more natural 2 spot in the lineup. JP is a career .305 hitter with a career On Base Percentage of .355, which I’d like to be 30 points higher, but he’s good for about 50 stolen bases a year, which the Yankees could definitely use. He certainly killed us in the 03 Series. The rumor has the Yanks parting with Scott Proctor (good riddance) and someone else I don’t know. I like it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Loggins and Messina

Currently listening to: the Loggins and Messina reunion tour on PBS. “Even though we ain’t got money, I’m so in love with you honey!” … so, yeah.

Here are some links:

- Baghdad Journals by Steve Mumford - interesting street drawings and paintings of Iraq done by an American artist between August 03 and December 04. Is it inconsistent of me to criticize the photographer’s arty capturing of the pool of blood image and not criticize the painter’s efforts? Probably.

- Oh, Al. Schlepping for the Car Title Loan business? The bastards repo’ed my car Al! They took my money and repo’ed my car, my beloved Ford Tempo.

- The definitive Karate Kid review, in memoriam of Pat Morita.

- And finally, we could all use a little reminder of the benefits of cooperation.

Messina just closed the show by saying “and don’t pull any wheelies leaving the parking lot either!” I have so so much to learn about Loggins and Messina.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Return of the Shark Hunter Guy

(title sung to the tune of Return of the Mac - and holy shit, when I clicked on this link it said "last viewed: never. total views: one." You're welcome, Mark Morrison. I remember you.)

anyways, Return of the Shark Hunter Guy:

[setting: bathroom at work]

SHG: “So, did you have your traditional shark feast for Thanksgiving?”

SH: “No, nope. You?”

SHG: “Oh yeah. Complete with shark giblet sauce.”

[SH exits bathroom.]

Another fine Monday at the Fido. I’ve got one of those tiny little bubble blisters on my eyelid that’s been scratching my cornea all day. Every time I blink. So, that’s keeping things interesting. I don’t know if I have anything to say right now, but the Binghamton chapter of the Von Trapper Keeper Fan Club has requested more frequent entries, so I’ll oblige. A blog is nothing without its readership. To ensure that the posting remains interesting and that I'm paying adequate attention to my loyal readership, I’m working on an algorithm to determine the perfect blog balance. You will know that it has been implemented when you find yourself neither bored nor wanting in your perusal of my posts. Could be a while, so hang in there, kitty.

ahhh. priceless. And that's why you love this blog. Because I took the five minutes to image google "hang in there kitty poster" and look through the links. Alls I know, is somebody betta be gettin me one of these for Christmas.

And lastly, while googling "hang in there kitty poster", I came across this link to an article titled, Snoop to Arnold: Let My Tookie Go. Now, this is not the forum for a discussion on Stanley Tookie's death sentence, but I just want to say, wasn't Snoop a Crip? Doesn't he lose a little bit of credibility here because of that fact? Would he ever go to bat for a Blood?

(the HITK reference came from an earlier defamer entry's quote of Carina Chocano: “Rent is commodified faux bohemia on a platter, eliciting the same kind of numbing soul-sadness as children’s beauty pageants, tiny dogs in expensive boots, Mahatma Gandhi in Apple ads. It’s about art, activism and counterculture in the same way that a poster of a kitten hanging from a tree branch (“Hang in There!”) is about commitment and heroic perseverance.” meOW!!)

Thursday, November 24, 2005


With a few hours less than 2 months to go in my exit strategy from the job, now seems like a good time to kick off the countdown and do a quick review of my five years in corporate America. And what better way than a subjective reductive dualistic breakdown. And who better to narrate than our old pal Business Casual Stag Devil Death Boy.

Will miss my blackberry.

Will not miss the morning commute on the subway. The silent masses trudging into work.

Will miss the money.

Will not miss the people who think they can make controversial political remarks flippantly (“drop the bomb”, “when did religion in the courtroom become a bad thing”, “he got convicted, so fry him”, etc.).

Will miss the health insurance.

Will not miss the Senior Vice Presidents, who, in addition to their absurd salaries and perks, have the power to ruin anyone else’s day on a whim. It’s surreal power for supremely average people to have.

Will miss the short woman who let’s slip a sly, mischievous, little giggle every time she says hi. Every time. Like we’re in on a secret that the rest of the office would never understand. Absolutely precious.

Will not miss the programmers and developers, who know just enough to fuck up their PCs and make you feel stupid when you try to fix them. Fix it yourself then, douchebag. I have other things to do.

Will miss the 0.75% of the workforce that has a genuine sense of humor. Hang in there, kids.

Will not miss the guy who says “Meeeester Dan!” everytime I walk by him. Good enough guy, but the Meeeester Dan treatment kills me.

Will not miss the “Shark Hunter!” guy.* Good enough guy but enough with the Shark Hunter joke!!

Will not miss metrics.

Will not miss reorgs.

Will not miss process charts.

Will not miss all-hands meetings.

Will not miss meetings.

* In a “Vertical Slice” (10 random people from several levels of the group) meet-and-greet with the new boss’s boss, he asked me what my ideal job would be and I told him “… shark hunter. Biggest predator in the Sea. It would be pretty cool to hunt sharks.” Quiet … boss laughs … other people laugh. One guy in the room particularly liked the comment. “There’s the Shark Hunter!”, he began saying everytime he saw me. Then “Hey Shark Hunter, get any sharks today?”. Then “Harpoon any big ones, Shark Hunter?” “What’s your strategy out there, Shark Hunter? Drop down some chum?” “What’s for lunch, today, Shark Hunter? Chum?” We had no history of interaction or knowledge of eachother other than that meeting where I dropped the SH joke, so this is all there was. When he was out of earshot or if there was a VP around, he’d put the hand dorsal fin on his head while he walked by and smiled. Then, when standing with co-workers in the kitchen, “You know this guy? That’s the Shark Hunter” with no further explanation, so that the person would look to me for explanation. Needless to say, it got very very old, and there was no way to stop it without telling him to shut up. After about a year of daily monotonous Shark Hunter references, I happened to pull up to the urinal next to him in the bathroom. There were three other guys in the bathroom (who, like everyone else in the world other than this guy and me, had no clue about the Shark Hunter thing). Then this: “Hey … I’m surprised to see a man of your stature … in here … Sharks might come up through the piping and grab ya!” Silence. What do you say to that. And there’s no end in sight to the Shark Hunter comments. Today, he just said, “shark!”

Monday, November 21, 2005

The Belle of Milton

This one might be a had-to-be-there, but here it is anyways: Nick-Lo, Kevbo and I were swilling at Charlie’s on Friday night, cooking up some ideas for the comedy shorts project, when this coked-up punk girl from Milton sitting at the table next to us hopped over to tell us that these were her picks on the juke box (Psychobillies). She was all over the place - shouting, menacing, menacing, shouting. All very cute. We weren’t quite sure if she was going to hit us with her Bud Light or what. She trashed Kevin's mother when he suggested that she was from Swansea, told us we had boring names, and repeatedly assured us that “We’re drinkin’ beeeahs, kid!” She was obnoxious. Delightfully so.

After a while, Coked-up Milton Punk Girl and Nick went out to smoke and, when he mentioned one of us, she asked, “is that the normal looking guy or the guy that looks like a professor/pedophile?” (apparently, that’s me. though, Nick had to ask). And then Nick rolled the dice. In a sketchy sociological experiment, he told her that Kevin’s mom had just died so she should probably lay off the ‘yo mama’ talk. Naturally, this destroyed the chemistry and she stayed away from us completely for fear of saying something by accident. There went our entertainment for the evening. We chastised Nick and he apologized repeatedly, but we understood. He was going for the gold and blew it all. So after another hour, we headed out to the next bar (Nick still apologizing), when who should we run into but Coked-up Milton Punk Girl. Nick asked her if she was getting another 8-ball, she said she might get a half an 8-ball, Kevin asked “wouldn’t that be a 4-ball”, and …

Yes, you know it’s coming …

“YO MAMA!” she shouted before she could catch herself. Immediately her jaw dropped and she started yelling “Oh my god! Oh my god! Oh my god! Oh Oh Oh! I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”

Hilarious. Nick (at the considerable risk of encouraging you) you’re an evil genius.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


Update on the Dan Nolan artist war situation: I just received a threat via my website contact me link from another Dan Nolan who was none-too-pleased that I had the domain name wrapped up. He opines:

"my name is Dan Nolan and I am a graphic designer. How much will you sellme
your domain name for? I will sue you for using my name. write back soon

Dan Nolan"

Bitch, I will smack you. You ain't ready for it. The Lake Michigan Massacre is still in the planning stages, so I don't think it's him. This alleged Dan Nolan writes from, which googles to this. So, I'm not that worried about it.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Indian Yoga vs Irish Yoga

May my ancestors forgive me for this one. Indian yoga:

In case you missed that, it says "requiring years of practice to achieve". Now I'm not making a statement of cultural superiority, but ...

... Irish yoga:


Friday, November 11, 2005

The Beautiful Terror

It's very troubling that this image is so beautiful. This was on the front page of yesterday. It was from the recent suicide bombing in Baghdad. It's got that apocalypse-now-nine-eleven-i-can't-believe-i'm-thinking-about-how-visually-aesthetically-beautiful-this-is thing. But there's also the angle of the shot where this photographer was clearly thinking about taking an artistic shot - pointed out nicely by the soldier looking at the camera. What was the thought process there? Was s/he thinking about the prize photo in the midst of this trauma, was s/he compelled as an artist to document this tragedy, or ... I don't know.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Quick Hit Links

  • (stolen from the Sports Guy's Daily Links) Manny and John Henry's Chat Session.
  • I think I found my Obi Wan (alongside my Princess Leia) to guide me through this crazy little thing called blog.
  • The felicitous phrasing of Insider Mike finally gets a little recognition on Gawker. Gawk betta re ca nize.
  • Now the whole nation knows I'm a shivering flannel-clad mess. What is this 1992? I knew he was going to interview me, but calling me out on the flannel? cold. (yeah, you like that "continuity of dissent" line. what's up now.)
  • Chuck Klosterman (Esquire, Spin) on old school sports. (funny article but his logic is flawed on supporting the NBA dress code, which is just another step in David Stern's nouveau prim packaging of the NBA. In the old Boston Garden, it was dirty, the halls were filled with smoke, it was gritty and crass, and it was one of the best sports environment in the world. In the Fleet Center (sorry, TD Banknorth Garden Center Arena?), you get kicked out for giving the Fan Dance Cam the finger from the top row of the stadium, when there’s no one within 5 rows, at a crap game on a Wednesday night. Bullshit. Let the kids, the families, and the white business casual community get an unadulterated look at what the NBA and America is all about: it’s about hip hop and it’s about me, drunk and pissed off at the Dance Cam on a Wednesday night.)

Monday, November 07, 2005

Daniel Nolan - Chicago Portrait Painter

Long time fans of this blog and my "work" in general, will be aware of the fact that my name is Daniel Nolan, I am from Chicago originally, and I am a portrait painter. Surely the only member of that particular subset of existence, no?

No. Turns out there's another Daniel Nolan Toddlin' Town Artist out there. In the spirit of the betterment of all artists named Dan Nolan (or some variant thereof), you'd think I would try to foster some sort of positive communication with this new fella. Again, no. I am organizing a posse to drive out to State Street That Great Street to kick some ass East Coast Style. That bitch is going down.

Speaking of the real Dan Nolan, Artist, (me), I had my audition for the Cambridge Community Television Art Showdown gameshow yesterday. I think it went pretty well. Though I showed up to the wrong place at first and the very nice new age digital-organic fusion raver philosopher kid on acid assured me that someone would eventually be by the gallery for the audition while he guided me through the interactive exhibit and fed me coffee and theory. An hour later someone else came by and told me I was supposed to be next door. So my state of mind may have been a bit off. Especially since the gallery and the studio are across the street from an Irish pub that was showing the Steelers game.

Friday, November 04, 2005

The 60 Year Old Virgin

This is the photo that prompted lc's co-workers to ask if I was "insinuating that because she has chosen not to dedicate her life to a man and family she is somehow damaged or frigid or weird." I told lc to tell them yes and that they would be too if they weren't careful.

In the words of the least funny band of all time, Low, "where is the laughter?" Speaking of funny, there's certainly nothing funny about Alito, so far. I'll find something eventually. Actually, the Swans are probably less funny than Low (*shudder*).

Monday, October 31, 2005

The Detroit Stalker

During a recent Arcade Fire show in Austin TX, the mysterious Detroit Stalker was spotted in his trademark geriatric glasses with that inimitable glaze of sweat and rib grease coating his face, skulking behind two lovely young patrons. The Detroit Stalker's recent return to the public eye has god-fearing intelligent-design-subscribing folks worried about a return to the creepiness that ruled the day before they took the upper hand in the Culture Wars. This was the third spotting of the Motown Mug in 2005.

This is clearly him monitoring a press conference of special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald. Note the rib grease on the forehead.

Many are convinced that this is him lurking on a recent episode of the Emmy winning tv program, Lost.

I doubt we've see the last of the smirking stoic.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Bank. (a play by Dan Nolan)

[On a brisk Saturday morning, Dan stops off at the bank on his way to the coffee shop. Dan brings a deposit slip and two checks to the Teller’s window. They exchange pleasantries.]

Dan: If I could just get a balance on the account after the checks are deposited… thanks
[transaction ensues for maybe 3 minutes]

Teller: Ok. Here’s your receipt.

Dan: So this is the balance before the checks are deposited, right?

Teller: No, that’s not the balance with the checks. You just deposited the checks.

Dan: Right. So this balance doesn’t reflect the checks being added to it yet.

Teller: No, that’s your balance. You deposited these as checks [Teller holds up checks to show Dan], not cash. Cash would be added right in. These checks [Teller holds up checks again] are not cash yet.

Dan: That’s what I’m saying. Once they are deposited in, the balance will be bigger. This balance [Dan points to the balance] is before the checks are deposited.

Teller: If you had deposited them as cash, they would be on the balance. Do you want me to reverse the transaction and deposit them as cash?

Dan: No, I just wanted to make sure this was not the balance after the checks are deposited.

Teller: That’s right. … I’m not fussin’ with you.

Dan: Great. Thanks. Have a nice day.


Friday, October 28, 2005

Harriet Miers - Albino Alligator?

Many major news outlets are billing the Miers withdrawal as a stunning defeat for Bush, a major miscalculation contributing to his recent reeling. But Insider Mike has suggested that the Miers withdrawal was a brilliantly played distraction from the indictment story. But was the withdrawal the ploy or was the nomination itself the ploy? Was Harriet an albino alligator, pushed into the middle of the muck, unable to camouflage and protect herself, sacrificed for the benefit of the rest of the republican reptiles? Was all her floundering just a red herring? Does she in fact wear purple horseshoes and prance in fields of green clovers? About this there can be no doubt: the suffering of the Bush administration is magically delicious.

I certainly wouldn’t put anything past the Bush Cabal. I think once it became clear that she probably wouldn’t be confirmed, they (and she) decided on the withdrawal and then using the timing to their advantage was an obvious move. Fortunately, I don’t think it worked since the possible indictment of Rove and/or Scooter Boy is a bigger story – 24 hours after the Miers withdrawal, Paddy Fitz is trumping her on,, CNN, reuters, and even the Fair and Balanced boyz at FoxNews. Also I think back to back front page examples of Bush’s horrendous judgement of character will only hasten the onset of his lame duck status.

But as far as Supreme Court strategy goes, I don’t know what to think about whether Miers was an albino alligator from the beginning. Possible scheme: She gets attacked by the right for weeks. She withdraws. Bush nominates a hard core conservative to appease his base. Dems and possibly a couple moderates filibuster and block. Bush nominates another conservative, Dems don’t have the positioning to pull another filibuster, with the right threatening Nuclear Option, the Gang of 14 capitulating, and the nation sick to death of Supreme Court nominations. Said conservative gets in and swings the court to the right. It’s not a very complicated strategy if that’s what they’re doing. And Miers apparently reveres Bush so she would have been willing to take the fall. Ultimately, I don’t think it matters because Bush has a long list of qualified conservative candidates and the Dems can’t block them all. But the good news is that the longer this is drawn out, the longer O’Connor stays on the bench. This means that she may still cast critical votes on many cases on the docket, including a privatization of wetlands case, an assisted suicide, and an abortion case.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Uribe You're OK

Congratulations to the Pride of the South Side, the Chicago White Sox. I was pulling for them since Chicago is technically my hometown (1973 through 1975, anyways) and my only experience with Houston was a 12 hour traffic jam in 100 degree no AC Mad Max conditions (thanks for the ride, Brian). As I write this, I'm stopping the clock: 14 minutes between the last out and the first commercial selling White Sox World Series t-shirts. Impressive. Anyways, final thoughts:

- How about Uribe getting all Derek Jeter on the last two plays to win the World Series. Great plays.
- Ozzie Guillen just dedicated the World Series trophy to Venezuela. Chavez press release forthcoming.
- I predicted the White Sox over the Astros in 6 back in the LDS. I'll take partial credit.
- Have there ever been three worse singing performances than the National Anthems by Aaron Neville and John Secada, and the God Bless America by Lyle Lovett? Come on, Houston.
- Was there any question - at all - that Edward Olmos was going to be the Emcee of the Latino Legends ceremony? Come on, Latino Legends.
- Who's less clutch: Brad Lidge or A-Rod?

So, that about wraps it up for the baseball season. Looks like Cashman and Fat Nosed Brooklyn Joe will be back in the Bronx, so at least some of the Old Guard will still be running the show. I'm not ready to talk about A-Rod yet. Theo's rejecting the latest offer, but I'm sure he'll be back. But enough about baseball until Spring Training. Like I've always said, Boston's a great town 4 months out of the year. I've always said that.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Welcome to Von Trapper Keeper.