Posts from January 2003.

Another Milestone

defective yeti is pleased to annnounce that today marks thirty-two straight years of Not Giving A Rat-Ass About The Superbowl. A big “thank you” to everyone who took the time to send cards and congratulatory emails — I couldn’t have done it without you! *

* Lie.

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Hello Left-Wingers!

Are you a fanatical, wild-eyed left-winger, prone to posting long USENET screeds with subject lines like “DID DUBYA KILL ANN LANDERS??!!!!!! (YES!!!)” and packed with air-tight logical arguments like “bush dint’t want to invade iraq until the pretzle incident THINK ABOUT IT!!!!!!”?

Do you love those too-clever-by-half rhetorical shenanigans, like calling Bush “Resident Select” or “Commander In Thief” or “Republican, insofar as he ‘can’ steal an election!”?

If so, then, boy howdie, do I have a treat for you. Here’s a neologism I just came up with, and you (you!) are welcome to use it incessantly — in newsgroups, in letters to the editor, in long, spittle-intensive harangues delivered to the guy sitting next to you on the bus — between now and the televised speech next Tuesday.

Are you ready? Are you sitting down? You’d better sit down. I know how excited you get about these things. I’m serious about the sitting-down. Well, anyway, here it is:

“George Bush’s State of Buffoonion Address”

Go nuts. No need to thank me. In fact, you can even claim you made it up yourself. I wash my hands of the whole thing.

Update: Last night I was describing to a buddy my campaign to insinuate the phrase “State Of Buffoonion Address” into the left-wing vernacular by publicizing it on my website.

“Oh hey,” he said, “While you’re at it, could you try and get everyone to adopt my new phrase, too?”

I said that I would. So here it is, everyone.

“Keepin’ it real in two-thousand and threeal.”

Please employ it forthwith.

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I Have A Crush

I just ordered theater tickets over the phone. “Okay,” the customer service rep said “Let me get your name.”

“Matthew Baldwin.”

She clarified: “‘Baldwin’ like the piano?”

“Yes!” I was ebullient. “Thank you so much for not asking ‘like the brothers’!”

“Which brothers?” said she.

I know it’s a little early, but: Anonymous Theater Ticket Customer Service Representative, will you be my valentine?

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Bloggies

Good morning. defective yeti is up for the “Most Humorous Weblog” Bloggie. I was sorta hoping it would get nominated for “Best New Weblog” or “Least Spellchecked” or something else I’d have a hope of winning, but “Most Humorous” it is.

Don’t get me wrong: this is great news for my Brobdingnagian ego! But it’s also bad news for the yeti-reading public, because now that I’m “on the spot,” as they say, the next fortnight’s worth of entries are certain to be violently unfunny, just as a multitude of visitors stop by to “check” me “out” before voting for Wil Wheaton. So if you’re here four days from now, and you’re wondering why every post after this one is all like “let me tell you about this great For Better Or Worse strip I read this morning, LOL!!!,” that’s what’s going on. Go read these instead.

Or, better yet, go read Cockeyed or Mimi Smartypants or Torrez.org, pretend that it’s me writing all that ha-ha, and vote accordingly. (That last one is kinda tricky, since Andre Torrez is also up for the “Most Humorous Weblog” award. So it’s crucial that you remember, at all times, that you’re pretending I wrote the funny stuff on his site. Otherwise you might get confused and vote for him. Here’s a mnemonic you can use: “If Torrez makes you laugh so hard that you become sweaty, vote for the yeti”.)

Thanks for the nomination, Bloggies-ers!

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Great Ideas For Dead People

Apparently there’s a company that will take the ashes of your deceased loved-one and turn them into a diamond. That’s a great idea! But the prices are outrageous: ten grand for only three-fourths of a caret.

Why so much? Is it because it’s expensive to generate the pressure needed to squeeze a gem out of carbon-based ashes? If so, they should offer a cheaper option for regular folks like you and I: pay for a lower PSI and turn your deceased loved-one’s ashes into a charcoal briquette! Heck, that would be better than a diamond, because you could put the final product to good use.

Neil: Awesome barbecue, dude. These bratwurst are killer.

Carl: The secret is in the Uncle Milton.

And for real cheapskates, they could just stuff your loved-one’s ashes into a snowglobe for keepsaking. Actually, that’s a pretty great idea in its own right. A few months back we had a Terror Alert here in Seattle after some Brainiac dropped a baseball fan’s ashes onto Safeco Field. And the FAA prohibits the release of cremated ashes over urban areas anyway. So they should make custom snowglobes, with landscapes (or baseball stadiums) in the bottom and Dead Guy Ashes in the air. Why drop Grandpa Willie over Manhattan once, when, with a daily shake, you can scatter his ashes over the city day after day after day?

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I Have My Doubts

Spam:

Date: Wed, 15 Jan 2003 16:50:18 -0800
From: Jason Knight
Subject: I want to sell your bagels through our stores

I've spent a lot of time at your website and I think your bagels are perfect for the stores we work with ...

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Current Affairs

I am two-thirds of the way through The Fellowship of the Ring and enjoying it immensely. Nonetheless, as I left for work Friday morning I reluctantly set aside Tolkien, stuffed a copy of “Basic Wiring” into my backpack, and spent my bus ride reading not about Aragorn son of Arathorn, but about the installation of flush-mounted jacks. Let this serve as a warning to all who were entertaining the ludicrous notion of buying a home.

I was preparing for the major wiring project I worked on over the weekend. Well, sort of worked on. Actually, Pa-In-Law did most of the work. My chief contribution was to stand behind him, occasionally say things like “Is it true that electricity can shock you?,” and look befuddled whenever he asked if I owned specialized tools like “receptacle analyzers” or “screwdrivers.”

I should explain. I’m not exactly what you would call a “handy,” unless by “handy” you mean “someone who enjoys drinking beer,” in which case I’m a freakin’ Bob Villa. It’s true that I had to maintain a home while serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer, but home repair in San Marcos, Bolivia, generally consisted of taking mud from the ground and using it to spackle the holes in your adobe wall. Now that I’m back in the States — complete with luxuries like a phone book full of plumbers — about the most ambitious home improvement project I will voluntarily embark on is feeding the cats.

Pa-In-Law, on the other hand, is one of those guys who can build an entire house from lichen, a superhuman anti-entropy agent whose home repair skills could gain him admittance into the Justice League of America. Case in point: on Saturday morning we went to the hardware store, and, having never patronized this establishment before, he stopped an Aproned Hardware Store Guy to inquire about the wire conduits and the spigots; after that he never had to ask anyone where to find anything, because, knowing the location of the these two items, he was apparently able to triangulate the position of everything else in the store. “Let’s see,” he’d say, “fluorescent lights are on aisle 7, so mulch must be on 29. Left-hand side.”

The remainder of the weekend was pretty much a blur. Upon our return, Pa-In-Law pried open the main service panel to the house, gestured at the Lovecraftian tangle of tentacles inside, said “I’m sure you know about all this,” and transmorgified into a Tasmanian Devil of electrical work. I’d wander into the house to fetch a grape soda and return to find that he had installed two outlets and drilled a hole into our crawlspace during my absence. He kept referring to “The Code,” leaving me to wonder whose code he was talking about — Morse’s? Hammurabi’s? — until I realized he was citing the National Electrical Code from memory.

But I don’t want to give you the impression that he did everything. I held the flashlight sometimes. Also: I hammered.

All in all it was two days of blissful ignorance, minus the bliss. Of course it was understood ahead of time that Pa-In-Law would be doing most of the labor; my role was to observe, assist, and learn from the master. And I did pick up a trick or two. But most of the time I felt like I was trying to learn how to run a four-minute mile by watching Hicham El-Guerrouj in action. Pa-In-Law seemed to take my ineptitude in stride, but I suspect that’s because he knows I am a prerequisite for grandchildren. And believe you me, the instant those grandchildren are born I’m going to ship them off to Pa-In-Law’s Home Improvement Summer Camp and leave ‘em there until they know how to wire a football stadium, to ensure that I never have to look inside my service panel again.

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Confession

Tonight for dinner I ate both pasta and antipasta. When they collided in my stomach it set off a chain reaction that annihilated the universe.

So if you were wondering who had done that .. yeah, it was me. Sorry everyone. I’ll make sure it doesn’t happen again.

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The Bad Review Revue

Kangaroo Jack: “Virtually every shot of the kangaroo was digitally created, and perhaps that was an insurance policy masterstroke. Forcing a real live one to act opposite these co-stars could have easily constituted animal cruelty.” — Joe McGovern, VILLAGE VOICE

A Guy Thing: “Sets the bar of taste low, then proceeds to limbo underneath it.” — Sean O’Connell, ECLIPSE MAGAZINE

Half Past Dead: “Absent one original moment and bathed in de rigueur steel blue punctuated by sporadic bursts of flaming orange, the movie is notable only for its creative approach to Seagal’s bulky gracelessness: Not since Apocalypse Now has a film gone to such lengths to hide what its star looks like.” — Manohla Dargis, LOS ANGELES TIMES

Equilibrium: “Could be stupider only if it were longer.” — Elvis Mitchell, NEW YORK TIMES

Just Married: “Just Awful.” — Luke Thompson, DALLAS OBSERVER

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Dr. Phil Addresses Nation’s Consumers

Self-help guru Dr. Phil McGraw addressed the nation's consumers last night during a speech televised by all major networks. "You cannot play the game of life with sweaty palms," McGraw told the estimated 50 million viewers, adding "I'm not trying to beat you up, I'm trying to wake you up." The speech was given at the behest of the Bush administration after consumer confidence plunged to a two-year low in the fourth quarter of 2002. Dr. Phil, noting "it's sometimes its hard to see your own face without a mirror," suggested that consumers write down their good qualities on a sheet of paper and bring it with them to the mall as a way of bolstering self-esteem while shopping. Oprah Winfrey, meanwhile, has been dispatched to North Korea, where she will speak to Kim Jong-Il about his constant need for validation.

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