Apr 262016

As many of your know, I’m celebrating my like my 186th birthday this year, give or take a millennium—and yes, I don’t look a day over 500. Thanks!

And as my kids have heard over and over again, I’ve seen a lot in my time … the invention of fire … the first wheel … bread before it was sliced. Heck, I remember ol’ Abe Lincoln back when he was a wrassler! Them was the days, by cracky …


“I am appearing in this idiot’s blog against my will or knowledge.”

Actually, it was less than 200 years ago when Lincoln was tossing his fellow grapplers around Illinois, which still sounds like a long time ago to most of you. But consider this: Right now in 2016 we’re closer to the Civil War (1865) than the Civil War is to the Salem Witch Trials (1693)—and by one score and a few years, to use Lincoln math.

How about this for you pop culture fans: The birth of MTV (1981) is closer to the death of JFK (1963) than to the death of Michael Jackson (2009).

Speaking of dearly departed musical icons—the release of Prince’s “Purple Rain” (1984) is closer to Elvis’ first hit single “Don’t Be Cruel” (1956) than it is to the recent untimely death of Prince himself.

All shook up? Then let’s get crazy with some more time-bending fun, you know, like it was 1999! [*groan*]

Two epic poems, Homer’s “Odyssey” and Virgil’s “Aenid,” are often taught together, so you assume they’re both from the same general era, right? In fact, they were written nearly 800 years apart—or the distance between the typing of these words and the signing of the Magna Carta.

If there’s anything I know for sure (other than one measures a circle beginning anywhere), it’s that 800 years from now no damn dirty computer (or talking ape) will be contrasting and comparing this blog with the Magna Carta.

Okay, let me a-splode your grey matter a bit with this oft-quoted gem: We’re closer to the time of Tyrannosaurus Rex than Tyrannosaurus Rex is to Stegasaurus … by about 16 MILLION years.


Possibly not historically accurate.

In fact, dinosaurs were the dominant form of life on Earth for 135 million years. By comparison, humans as we know us, have been around 200,000 years, or less than .1 percent of that time length. (Note the decimal point there.) Yikes.

And one more (to loop this back round a bit): Man landing on the moon and the New York Jets winning the Super Bowl (1969) are both closer to 9/11 than we are to the launch of MTV.


For one brief, shining moment …

Yeah, some of you are o-l-d.

So as Einstein generally theorized, time is all about perspective, right? Which is why I worry about our (or my) particular point in history.

As I mentioned earlier, we’re more than 150 years after the abolition of slavery, and it’s clear to everyone alive right here right now that it was a horrible thing that none of us want to even be remotely associated with.

But in the year 3000 when someone (Skynet?) is teaching “ancient history,” will anyone be able to distinguish 1864 from 1964, or even 2016? Like how people now vaguely recall/jumble important facts from their edumakation, such as Alexander the Great fought the Spartans (he didn’t as the Battle of Thermopylae—famously and gratuitously portrayed in the movie 300—was more than a century-and-a-half before he was born). I worry that future ‘Muricans will be like, “The slaves were freed in 1864 and like a century or two later, they finally got equal rights when homosexuals were also allowed to vote and get married.”

Yeah, that seems like silly talk now, but my future brain floating in jar will not be surprised if our legacy gets all sorts of other mashed up. I can only imagine what they might be saying …

• “What? Over? Did you say ‘over’? Nothing is over until we say it is. It wasn’t over when Osama bin Laden bombed Pearl Harbor and the Twin Towers!”

• “Today, I presented my women heroes of history report on Kim Kardashian-West-Bieber-Manziel-Timberlake-Minaj-Lovitz-West, who invented the intrawebz and photography.”

• “We’ll never forget how Hitler launched the Hollacaust to exterminate all the Jews in Hollawood, and then how Gwen Stefani led the fight against him.”

• “Today we learned how Walt Disney was looking for the Fountain of Youth when he discovered Florida, which is why he built an amusement park for kids on the spot.”

• “President Clinton was the first transgendered president to hold the office as both a man and a woman, and even married himself at one point.”

• “Wayne Brady won four championships as quarterback of the New England Patriots and after he retired, turned to improv musical comedy.”

• “President John F. Kennedy was shot by aliens dressed as men in black, who then hid at Area 51 with Bigfoot, Anne Frank and the first Carrot Top.”

• “I didn’t know that the ‘M’ in MTV stood for its founder, Michael Jackson, the King of Music, who was also the first man to walk on the moon (which is why they still call it ‘moonwalking’). His son The Prince taught doves how to cry.”

Party over, we’re out of time …

Jun 242014

So as will happen from time to time, I find myself in an unexpected moment catching something that we all take for granted for the absurdity it is.

Case in point: my shampoo.


Yeah, it’s a bottle of Head & Shoulders. But somewhere between “rinse” and “repeat” it struck me—what *exactly* is “classic clean”?!

Obviously, every shampoo from the first one ever devised is designed to clean hair, so unless there’s a new hipster  trend out there featuring shampoos that make hair dirtier, greasier and more dandruffy (which there very well could be—you never know with them danged hipsters!), then what’s the point of saying “clean” at all?

And the “classic” part—is this some olde-timey reference that’s supposed to invoke an earlier era … you know, like say a century ago when personal hygiene was an afterthought? Or are there so many new-fangled shampoo formulations out there—such absolute hair-cleansing anarchy and utter madness—that we’ve lost ourselves as a species who bathes regularly and our only hope of achieving socially acceptable hygiene is by a return to the very first shampoo ever whipped up?!

Okay, I understand that it’s about marketing—trying to make a product sound more awesome or interesting than it may be without saying *anything* at all, just so we’ll purchase it in vast quantities. But when you start noticing it—really noticing it—it seems crazy. “Classic clean” = “Really nothing new here, but it’s CLASSIC nothing …”

I started going through my medicine cabinet and such extraneous nonsensical silliness is on almost every label …


I draw your attention to “ARCTIC FRESH.” Let me first say that “fresh” is the most overused word in all of marketing—as soon as you show me the first product ANYWHERE that brags about being “rotten,” then I will allow that you need to distinguish something as “fresh.” Until then, I would hope to Don Draper that “fresh” is automatically implied with every single. product. EVAR.

Now how about “arctic.” Did I miss the memo where we all agreed that an inhospitable, barren, frozen region of the planet where no one lives and nothing grows is now synonymous with “especially fresh”? Seriously, the only thing “cool” about the arctic are the polar bears, and when I imagine their teeth, all I think of are jagged yellowy icepicks flecked with stanky decaying fleshy bits of seal. Better known as *not* what I’m hoping to achieve with my dental hygiene.


Tecnu—”the original.” You know, because of the ferociously lucrative Tecnu knockoff market out there, which may or may not include ineffective phonies like “Tacmoo,” “Technew” or “Ticnoo,” you want to make sure to get the right one. Vishnu knows you don’t want to be stuck with a bottle of freakin’ generic Tarkboo when your ankles are bubbling over with poison ivy oils.


We got a double dip on the cortizone—it’s both “MAXIMUM STRENGTH” and an “INTENSIVE HEALING FORMULA.” Like with “fresh,” as soon as someone starts peddling a “moderately weak” formula, or one that promotes “lackadaisical scarring,” I’m not convinced we need these distinctions.


Careful, you’re brain may a-splode with this one. First off, it’s “classic,” which we’ve determined has about as much merit as describing a rock as being made with “genuine matter from this universe.” “Pacific Force Scent”—are we talking about something that smells like Marines landing on the shores of Iwo Jima? I mean, I wasn’t there for that event, but I’m pretty sure that it smelled like fear, sweat, vomit, blood, fire, smoke, mutilated and blown-apart bodies, melted faces and death … with a particularly heavy emphasis on death and its horrid stench. My chosen scent!


Are there a lot of “impure sport” products available? And what does “sport” smell like exactly? Because after my years of playing ball and running track, I’m thinking of every locker room and gym bag I’ve ever known, and I’m not sure I’d be bottling it and selling it as a way to keep from putting out an offending scent. I’d even possibly go with b.o. over old sweat socks, but hey, I’m crazy like that.





“Dear Valued Customer,

We here at Annie’s Mac & Cheese want to assure you that, unlike our inferior competitors who like to create their products with unadulterated EVIL and unmitigated BADNESS, we take the time to make sure that we only source our ingredients from Officially certified GOOD suppliers. Thus, you will never inadvertently ingest a fork full of Satan-tinged, Hitler-influenced or Kim Jong Un-riffic horror. Remember, their products = bad, ours = good, and we’re not just saying that to cover up anything untoward. No, not us! Nothing to worry about here. Hahahahahaha. … hahaha … ha … uh. Enjoy!

Love, Annie.”


I think I read about this somewhere on the intrawebz—the growing concern over the influx of unnatural lemon flavor, made on assembly lines from bionic lemons, or even worse, supernatural lemon flavor, culled during a seance in a graveyard from pressing a witch’s teat between two ouija boards. Pretty sure the Illuminati and Masons are involved. Gary Busey, too.

I’m also fairly confident that this is what the Tea Party is all about—stopping unnaturally and supernaturally lemon flavored iced tea from reaching market. Yay Al Sharpton!


Hey look, my dishwashing liquid is not from a failed formula that was left behind in a laboratory! And unlike all those shallow, superficial cleaning products out there, this one will reach down to cleanse my dishes to their filthy cores, purifying them on subconscious levels that may affect their eternal souls! Which just might explain the random poetry I’m now finding on my cereal bowls.


Okay, this may not be a silly marketing claim, but as I was going through the cabinets, this caught my attention.

I love the inherent cruelty in this one—the product that heinously kills other creatures by essentially melting their nervous systems is given an aroma that we might find appealing, just to mask the odor of death from our delicate noses!

If Raid had any soul, you’d think they might at least make an ant-killing pesticide with a “picnic” scent. “Oh damn, what is that big creature spitting all over us … oh, it’s wet and …  nasty and …  HOLY CRAP! It HURTS … OH DAMN! …. DAMN … it hurts … I’m dying … and … is that a fried chicken drumstick and a slice of watermelon? Hells yeah! Heaven here I come!”

Just remember to keep it fresh!