Monday, June 27, 2011

[Likely Never] Coming to a Stage Near You!

The house lights go down and the curtain is drawn, revealing what appears to be a charming and sunny kitchen on stage. A knock echoes from afar, and a man appears. He wanders through the kitchen and stops center stage, as a voice can be heard from backstage instructing him to make himself at home. He places a wrinkled brown paper bag on the counter and peers into the distance, presumably attempting to identify the source of the voice. He sighs and leans against the counter for a moment, awkwardly, and looks down at his battered sneakers. Abruptly, he pushes away from the counter and paces anxiously around the stage, as if his nerves had whispered to him a reminder as to where he was and why he had come to this house in the first place.

Just as he resolves to leave and find his hostess, the stage goes black. A spotlight shines on the strategically positioned ficus, stage left, whose leaves begin to tremble with anticipation. The stage slowly begins to brighten as the haunting melody of a single sitar fills the air. With the grace and mystique of a charmed cobra dancing from a woven basket, a tall, nattily dressed man emerges from the foliage. “Hello,” he croons to the bewildered houseguest. “I’m Chris Hanson from Dateline NBC. Have a seat.”

And so begins this summer’s hottest new theatrical show, To Catch a Predator: The Musical. Adapted from NBC’s hit investigative reporting docudrama To Catch a Predator, this critically acclaimed production combines the drama of imminent child abuse with the whimsy of musical theater in a style sure to delight even the most skeptical of theater-goers.

Audiences and critics are raving:

“I’ll be singing ‘A Sweaty Six-Pack of Wine Coolers and a Pocketful of Condoms’ and 'This is the First Time I've Ever Done This - I Swear" for weeks! I couldn’t stop dancing in my seat!”

“Chris Hanson’s character's rendition of ‘What were you Thinking?” was spellbinding. It was so sincere, I felt as though he was singing it to me!”

“The ensemble number ’What they do to Kiddie Rapers in Prison’ was brilliantly executed; particularly given the level of difficulty in the acrobatic choreography.”

“I loved ‘The Dance of the SWAT Team’ – so elegant, so simple, so beautiful. It was like watching a ballet.”

“I was so surprised to see the cast of Law and Order: SVU make a cameo on stage I nearly fainted– and when Ice-T joined in with ‘You got Tased, Mother F***ER,’ I knew I was witnessing something truly special.”

“To Catch a Predator should be called To Catch a Tony! Wow!”

Don't wait to be the last to experience this! See it for yourself and be a part of all the buzz!

To Catch a Predator: The Musical… tickets on sale now.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Updated Resume

For months now, I've been unemployed. I've searched for, interviewed for, and been rejected from a number of organizations, despite the well-known fact that I'm patently awesome. Clearly, the employers in the Bangor region are delusional.

Because I'm a fighter, though, I can't quit. In an effort to increase my hireability, I've taken some time to reflect on the possible reasons behind this unfortunate phenomenon. While walking through the figurative application process - looking for the shortcomings - I realized where my candidacy was weak. It's my resume. As it stands, my resume is very basic: Education, Experience, Training, Recognition, References. Boring. Additionally, it doesn't take into account at all the lessons I've learned in the past 5 months of idleness. So, I've developed an addendum to my resume that better encompasses my strengths as a potential employee. A-like so...

Special Skills
Sarcasm and emotional terrorism.
Sustainable weight-gain.
Passive aggression.
Smoking, tanning, and the regular employment of other known carcinogens.
Effective placement of the “Bumpit” hair-volumizing system.

Karaoke Repertoire
“Shake that Ass” (Eminem)
“Bitches Ain’t Shit” (Dr. Dre)
“Bust a Move” (Young MC)
“Baby Got Back” (Sir Mix-a-Lot)
“Honky-tonk Badonkadonk” (Trace Adkins)
All songs pertaining to Christmas and/or the baby Jesus.

Current Projects
Perfecting Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” dance for impromptu performance.
Learning all lyrics to “We Didn’t Start the Fire.”
Founding and presiding over a street gang.

Jokes pertaining to bodily functions.
The Red Sox.

Monday – Thursday.
Clowns, puppets, and dolls.
The word “moist.”

This is still a work in progress... Let me know if you have other awesome things for me to add.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Mallville 1.0

As an avid patroller of social networking sites, I’ve noticed the recent development of a disturbing trend befouling the Facebook realm. In the past several weeks, an alarming number of my internet acquaintances have taken it upon themselves to fashion virtual farms by way of a popular application entitled “Farmville.” With this interactive game, participants can create a unique farming character to plant and harvest a variety of crops, raise cutesy cartoon barnyard animals, erect farm-ish buildings, and purchase and send agricultural gifts to other players. My news feed is plagued with stories of lonely ducklings and lost sheep turning up on so-and-so’s property and an endless barrage of “photos” depicting these ridiculous (and completely imaginary) conglomerates. I like my news feed to give me straight-up gossip and stories of my friends’ misfortune. Not incessant updates on how your bogus strawberry patch is fairing. Let the record show that I hate Farmville.
To combat this agricultural phenomenon, while simultaneously satisfying the perverse joy I get from squashing others’ fun, I am trying to garner support for the development of a program to counter Farmville. I call this emerging application “Mallville.”
Similar to Farmville, Mallville will exist as a Facebook application designed to enhance social networking through various player interactions. Contrary to the innocence of Farmvillers, however, players of Mallville build virtual strip malls, parking lots, and elaborate multi-level parking garages to simulate suiting the realistic needs of our consumer-driven, contemporary economy. In Mallville, there is no room for the archaic pastoral community, and as such, players of Mallville are heartily encouraged to bulldoze, fill, and develop their friends’ virtual farms. “Expansion Points” will be earned by Mallville developers who successfully demolish Farmville properties and effectively supervise the construction of readily accessible shopping centers in their stead. When accumulated in bulk, these points can be used to purchase landfill by the ton, excavation machinery, concrete, asphalt, and other items necessary to aid in all destruction and construction efforts.
Anticipating the immediate popularity of Mallville, my hope is that all Farmville operations will be squelched within several days of the initial Mallville launch. Farmville participants will be encouraged to continue involvement by applying for entry-level positions within Mallville operations, including (but not limited to) demolition, construction, and management of the various slaughterhouses that will be necessarily and immediately assembled to process the elimination of millions of cutesy cartoonish farm animals.
So, please keep checking your Facebook applications for the advent of Mallville. And for all you cyber-farmers out there, don’t be surprised if you wake up early one morning to harvest your imaginary crop and find a virtual Walgreen’s where your fake corn field used to be. Agrarianism is so last season. Pave or be paved!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Application for Friendship

League of Superiority
“We win.”
Application for Admission
I. Personal Information

Name: ____________________ Age: ______
Looks on a scale of 1-10*: _______
*If rated under "8," please explain: ________________________________

Hair color: ________Eye color: ___________
Prosthetics (please list): _______________________

If you were a Spice Girl, you would be ______________________Spice.

II. Brief Assessment of Critical Values

Favorite denim wash: ______________

Favorite word in personal vocabulary beginning with the letter “d”: ______

Number of Facebook Friends: __________

Favorite baseball team: ______________________________

America’s finest news source: _____________________________

In the past 7 days, how many times have you:

Made someone cry: _____
Rolled your eyes: ______
Worn tapered-leg pants: ______
Flipped someone off: _______
Listened to Miley Cyrus: ______
Littered: _______
Laughed at the misfortune of another: ______

How many “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books do you own?*: __________
*If more than 0, please stop writing and slap yourself in the face.

When did you last willingly wear a scrunchy?: __________

III. Multiple Choice

Sarcasm is…
A. …scarcasm.
B. …inappropriate for the workplace.
C. …the language in which I am most fluent.
D. …sometimes hard to understand and usually hurtful.

The most effective form of subtle mockery comes by way of the…
A. …fist.
B. …eyebrows.
C. …mouth.
D. …meaningful embrace.

Ann Coulter is to “conniving harpy” as Jon Gosselin is to…
A. “spider monkey.”
B. “4.”
C. “capital dickhead.”
D. “misunderstood.”

The “L.L.” in “L.L. Bean” stands for
A. Lumberjack Lesbian
B. Live Long
C. Leon Leonwood
D. Suck it

IV. Word Association
Please write the first word or phrase that comes to mind when reading each prompt
Example: New Jersey: scabies
Orphan: _______________________________________________
Hot Pocket: _____________________________________________
Brangelina: _____________________________________________
Moist: _________________________________________________
Shank: _________________________________________________
Basketball: ______________________________________________
Little nugget: ____________________________________________
Irish: ___________________________________________________

V. Essays
1. In a brief essay, please rate your aptitude for passive aggression and give several examples as to how this ability has been employed to ruin someone else’s day.

2. Please describe your stance on shoulder pads in haiku form (5 syllables–7 syllables–5 syllables).

3. Please compose a personal statement, in 200 words or less, detailing your superiority to your peers.

VI. Acknowledgement of Applicant Rights and Responsibilities

I, _________________________, do affirm that the information stated in this application is accurate and complete. I understand that the content of my application shall remain confidential unless those league members reviewing my portfolio discover anything suitable for my public derision, at which point I relinquish all rights to privacy and will give every effort to refrain from weeping. Such instances of potential disclosure include, but are not limited to; grammatical errors, incorrect answers, poorly constructed Haiku, inability to follow directions, and shameless assumptions on the part of the review team.
Signature: ___________________________________________________________

Office Use Only:
Candidate rated on scale of doucheness (1-5): ____________

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Exisle

This is my summer of unemployment. I use the term “summer” in its most alleged sense, since the better part of the 2009 season has included weeks of relentless rain, record-breaking low temperatures, and a mosquito hatching fierce enough to rival a biblical plague. That picturesque Maine summer marketed to the out-of-state public as “Vacationland,” or “The way life should be” seems to have settled elsewhere this year. I hear Seattle is experiencing uncommonly beautiful weather right now. Assholes.

Any other summer, I might have taken this period of unemployment to participate in those adventure-y, tourist-y, nature-y activities so often taken for granted by the local (working) population. However, the combination of dismal weather and depleted funds has thwarted my anticipated escapades and rendered me basically house-bound. So, like any good American, I watch TV.

Highlights from my summer of couchitude include “So You Think You Can Dance,” “Chelsea Lately,” and the endless barrage of “Law and Order: SVU” episodes that has essentially cornered the market of my epileptically vacant attention. Unfortunately, with the good comes the bad, and it is the list of summer television lowlights that has prompted my return to the blogosphere.

With the exception of the abovementioned programs, it seems as though every time I turn on the television I am instantly annoyed. It is the news, in particular, that irritates me most consistently. I tried to watch exclusively entertainment broadcasts to avoid the atrocities of legitimate news, but can’t seem to stay away from my morning dose of MSNBC. I am an addict, and the vastness of human stupidity regularly publicized by the media guarantees no foreseeable end to my frustration.

To cope with this affliction, I have constructed an imaginary island where all those who aggravate me are to be sent. In my mind, the island is uncomfortably hot, barren, and surrounded by barbed wire to prevent any unsolicited departures. Similar to Guantanamo, but without the comfort of barracks and industrial disinfectants. I call it my “Exisle.” Although the roster of potential detainees may seem dauntingly lengthy, I have taken the time to narrow my list to a workable number.

My first nomination for eternal banishment is Rush Limbaugh. Although I am unsure as to how such an unfortunate-looking beast has charmed his way into so many conservative hearts, I’ll wager a guess that his decision to rant over the radio as opposed to on television had something to do with it. While Limbaugh’s crimes of annoyance are basically countless, Contessa Brewer noted that the first person in an argument to reference the Nazi party automatically loses the dispute and any right to further the conversation whatsoever. Well, Rush… you lose. Bon voyage.

My next recommendation for exile is one Jon Gosselin. Regardless of how sadistic Kate may appear (my thoughts go to a Chelsea Lately episode where she was described as “a conniving succubus”), it seems as though her aggressions where rightfully exercised. Any man who fathers eight children and then decides that he “missed out on his 20s” and wants to “enjoy his youth” deserves whatever abrasiveness comes his way. This is particularly relevant when his reintroduction into singleness includes bald sexcapades and reckless substance use sure to make its way back to the same television screen that raised his children. Well… have I got a vacation for you. Aloha, douchebag.

In an effort to remain gender-neutral in my proposed banishment, I would like to now add Sarah Palin to the roster. As Palin initially began her expedited ascent into the limelight, it was somewhat heartening to see a fellow woman so publically revered for her accomplishments and political prowess. It was not long, however, before she managed to contemporize the negative stereotypes historically associated with American women by way of her irrational reaction to a comedian’s provocation and her flighty resignation from her post as governor of Alaska. You can see Russia from your house? Great. Dasvidaniya, freak.

Finally, I would like to round out my list of suggested exports with the mother of all public nuisances (quite literally), The Octomom. Though I feel as though the doctor who had a direct hand in her rapidly multiplying and wildly underserved brood shares much of the blame, I’d like to give mom the primary boot. From her efforts to trademark “Octomom” for explicit use in reference to her imaginary line of designer clothes for infants, to her recent multi-million-dollar reality-television agreement, Suleman receives a solid “A” for child-exploitation and an “A+” for consistently fouling the news. The kiddos stay here; Octomom goes. Later, Eighter.

So, I give you the most recently solidified list of my nominations for exile. My proposal would be neither complete nor official without alternates, who are as follows:

Dishonorable Mentions

Miley Cyrus, for marketing adolescence as “sexy,” and audibly chewing gum mid-interview.
Ann Coulter, for being so openly and maliciously hateful. And horse-faced.
John Mayer, for holding an impromptu press conference outside of his gym to announce that he was breaking up with Jennifer Aniston, rather than the other way around. Ick.
Kathy Lee Gifford, for ruining The Today Show.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Not-so-Great Balls of Fire

Anyone who knows me understands how appreciative I am of a good laugh. My experience in the field of higher education has been limited to that including residence life, primarily, which has served as a veritable wealth of situations warranting a good laugh at the expense of others. Living in a residence hall, at 27 years old, with 250 of my favorite 18 year olds… you know you’re gonna laugh. Or cry. Depending on what you consider “fun.”

In recent months, I’ve taken up some hours working in the office of student conduct, hearing student cases to determine individual responsibility and appropriate sanctions. Granted, the educational aspect and developmental opportunities are rewarding… but… I’m really in it for the stories. Students, in general, have magnificently concocted tales and excuses to justify behavioral infractions. So phenomenal are these stories, that I can’t help but share.

Let’s recap a few of this semester’s gems. Early in the academic year, I was scheduled to meet with a young male student who’d been found by the police to be trespassing in a construction area while illegally transporting alcohol as a minor. The police had chased him down (he ran… of course), and when they caught up to him, they confiscated a can of beer from his pocket. Rather than to summons this student to court, the police officers decided that it would be in the best educational interest of the student to be referred instead to our conduct office. You’d assume that by the time this had reached the office of student conduct, given the previous interaction with police, that the student in question would be somewhat humbled and indebted to the university for bypassing the state penal code… but no. The script went something like this:

Me: So, you’re here because of an incident from last weekend. Can you tell me your “side” of the story?

Student: Yeah. Well. I was kind of set up… I wasn’t doing anything wrong and I got in trouble.

Me: In this police report, it states that you were trespassing in a well-marked restricted area, in possession of alcohol as a minor, and that you ran from the police after they identified themselves.

Student: Yeah, but that’s the thing. Nobody asked why I was there, or why I had the beer, or why I ran away.

Me: Ok, why?

Student: So, I was supposed to meet some friends in between the two buildings. We didn’t know there was construction, and when I got there, I couldn’t see them. So, I thought maybe they hadn’t seen the hazard sign and had climbed over the fence to go in. See, I knew that was dangerous because it was marked “DANGER: DO NOT ENTER” and I didn’t want anyone to get hurt. So I went in the construction site, but just to look for my friends and tell them that they shouldn’t be in there. And then the cops came.

Me: And why did you run away from the police?

Student: Well, I didn’t know it was them.

Me: They didn’t identify themselves by stating (reading from report), “Stop. University Police. Stop.”?

Student: I think they did say that, but I couldn’t hear because I was covering my ears.

Me: Covering your ears?

Student: I was cold.

Me: Ok, so when the police finally caught up to you, they found a beer in your pocket. Can you tell me about that?

Student: Sure. The reason I had the beer in my pocket was because on my way down to the construction site –

Me: (interrupting) To make sure that your friends were alright in the event that they hadn’t seen the big red DANGER sign…

Student: -- yeah – so on my way down I saw a beer can on the ground. And it was full.

Me: So you picked up some trash you found and put it in your pocket?

Student: Yup. Because I figured I could just recycle it when I got back to my dorm. In the recycling room… Because we’re a green campus… and we recycle.

Me: Good. Good. You’re right, we do like the recycling. So, let me get this all right… While going to meet your friends, you encountered some litter on the ground, and decided to pick it up – for the general good of the campus – and then when you got to where you were to meet your friends, you noted imminent danger and, while trying to locate and warn your friends of said danger were attacked by the police, who you hadn’t noticed chasing and yelling at you because you were cold and covering your ears? Is that right?

Student: Yes. And I also want to say that it wasn’t the policeman’s fault that he had to chase me. I wasn’t dressed appropriately and I was running to stay warm.

Me: Duly noted…

So, there’s a fantastic example of a student interaction during a conduct meeting. Usually the excuses involve some sort of alcohol case… “No, I wasn’t drinking… people were drinking around me and they probably breathed a lot on me,” “Wait, even on campus you can’t drink until you’re 21?” or “I didn’t know it had alcohol in it.” Right.

Very recently, however, I encountered the excuse of all excuses: The Holy Grail of student conduct meetings. I was privy to the self-incriminating “I’m a dumbass and I don’t even know it” excuse.

To set up the story, a colleague and I were to hear a case involving five students suspected to have been smoking marijuana in a residence hall. The RA had smelled what she believed to be marijuana, and had called the police. As the police arrived, they similarly smelled something “burnt,” however also noted that the odor had been covered partially by a spray fragrance of some sort.

The students, during our hearing, were relatively compliant. However, when it was mentioned that the police reported that the odor of marijuana had been covered up with some nature of spray, one of the students decided to take the initiative to explain what exactly had been going on.

He explained that, no, there was no marijuana being smoked in or around the residence hall, so that’s not what they were smelling. And no, of course they didn’t try to cover the smell of weed with perfume. “Actually,” he stated, “ It was AXE deodorant spray, and I wasn’t using it to cover the smell of weed. I spray it on my testicles and then light it on fire to remove pubic hair. I do this all the time. It works.”

Now. As a woman, I frequently have a hard time understanding the general “why” behind most male actions. This particular situation was no exception. I was really struggling at this point. Trying to remain professional (and to appear somewhat developmental and “disappointed” in nature) involved me looking directly at the table. At this point, I couldn’t even look at this fool. Eyebrow positioning wasn’t even an option, because eye contact would likely result in hysterical laughter and/or some sort of physical “wrap upside the head.” Fortunately, my colleague, a very patient and professional man, interjected with “If you want to keep those things, you know, you can’t set them on fire.”

Originally, we had brought charges against the students only alleging potential alcohol and marijuana use. What to do now? Should we tag on an additional charge involving “fire safety,” “self-endangerment,” or “behavior which poses a significant risk to the self or others?” The allegation letter would read something like,

Dear So-and-So,

It is alleged that on a certain date, at a certain time, you were found by residence life professionals and paraprofessionals to have ignited your testicles for purposes of hair removal, you dumb fuck. If found responsible, the maximum sanction is suspension from the university, and possible suspension from independent living, if I have anything to say about it.
You are scheduled to have a meeting with conduct officers on a certain date and time, at which point, we will subtly mock you until you leave the room, when we will really let loose. Failure to participate in this meeting could result in a finding of responsibility in your absence, which I might recommend so that you don’t actually or formally have to admit to being so colossally challenged by the nuances of day-to-day life. Please do not hesitate to contact this office in the event of questions of concerns, as I’m sure you’ll have a hard time digesting this information because it’s not etched in pictograms on the inside of your cave.

Sincerely, I’m making fun of you right now,

Why (oh, why) can’t there be a charge of blatant and inexcusable stupidity?

Thursday, December 11, 2008


So, as some of you might recall, in February 2007, I donated 60% of my liver to my father in a successful effort to delay the effects of liver cancer (February 28th, to be exact... henceforth refered to as my "liverversary." I'll begin accepting commemorative gifts at the end of January, to give you all a good jumpstart on shopping). I gave him the right lobe of my liver (who needs that anyway?), and kept the left one for myself. Magically, the liver lobes grew in both of us to full size within weeks! I regrew a shiny new liver to punish all over again, and Dad came out of surgery with a rocket-charged right lobe to call his own. Currently, Dad and I are both doing well, for those concerned, and looking forward to our 2 year mark coming up.

Anyway, a good friend of mine, Kenleigh, was extremely supportive throughout the entire ordeal. She took my numerous morphine-induced phone calls from the hospital, drove me and my dad to Massachusetts for a follow up exam, and listened to me routinely bitch about the giant divet in my stomach. Also extremely notable, Kenleigh ran the Boston Marathon to raise money for the American Liver Foundation in my father's name that year, despite a veritable monsoon and 70mph headwinds.

Yet again, Kenleigh has decided to run the Boston Marathon to raise money for the Liver Foundation's "Run for Research" team this coming April. Perhaps she's the most dedicated friend anyone's ever had... perhaps she's so intensely driven to fund liver research that she can't help but run 26.2 miles to save lives like my dad's... or perhaps she's toggling between sheer determination to complete one of the most difficult tasks known to mankind and some sort of masochistic infatuation with intense muscle spasms. In any case - she's my pal and she needs help. In order to run for the team, she needs to raise over $4000 in donations ASAP! If you are willing and able (with the understanding that times are tough and there's no Bailout Bill for the layperson), you can donate to her fund here, on a secure-fancy-american-liver-foundation-certified webpage. Your name will appear on her little "honor roll" scrolly thing, if you so choose to identify yourself, or you can remain anonymous. I know that every small donation will help her reach her goal, and assist her in the exquisite self-punishment she can look forward to in the months to come.

When we get closer, I'll post the link for "runner-stalking," as I like to call it, where you can track the times/locations of registered Boston Marathon runners throughout the race. Then I'll give you Kenleigh's cellphone number so you can text her while she's running (yes, this fashionista runs with a sleek fanny pack to house her cellphone and gummy bear stash) and tell her to "run faster" like I do.

Have a fantastic evening!