Everything is wrong with me
Friday, July 29, 2005
 
pranks, search terms, homers, read on, salmonella is delicious, thank you, thank you again, off to LA
In college, my friends and I played a lot of jokes on each other. Some of them were on a grand scale. For example, one time my buddy Bill and I came back from a trip to find our all our clothes missing. Somehow we got tipped off that they were in his car, which we had left in Boston for the weekend. When we got to Bill's car, our clothes were indeed inside the car, but also inside the car was newspaper. Pages and pages of crumpled up newspaper, filling the entire fucking car. It took us a long time to clean that up and get our clothes out. However, a year later I had sex with the cousin of one of the guys who did it, so I won in the long run.

Other stuff was less mischievous. We all had laptops that we would take to the library to study (and by "study", I mean "cram"). As you computer nerds know, when the laptop (or any computer) is left idle, the user has the ability to bring up a screen saver of words that scroll across the screen against a black background. Usually, these say stuff like "Michelle's computer" or "BC '01" or whatnot.

I used to love manipulating these screen savers. Say a bunch of us were at a table in the library and one guy got up to use the bathroom. I'd scamper over and change his screensaver from "BC Football" to "Girls with pubes are overrated" or "My dad tastes good" hoping that someone in the library would glance over and be horrified. Of course, no one else in the study group would find this funny, least of all when he returned the dude whose computer it was, but I thought it was pretty f'in' funny.

I find myself feeling these same urges today, at work. We have a law library at my firm and every time I'm there, I see not laptops left open, but pads of paper. Attorneys go up there to do research and often leave their desks or cubbies with books open everywhere and legal pads with notes unprotected.

I practically have to physically restrain myself from going over to these unattended legal pads and writing "Shit tastes like love" or "Poo is GOD!!!!" in between their notes about torts or the Southern District or whatever.

I don't know how long I'm going to keep this urge at bay and I imagine that it will result in me being terminated from my current job. So think of me if your company is hiring.

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Now onto something I invited that countless other bloggers later stole! Here are some terms entered into Yahoo, Google and other search engines that brought people to this site.

First, a few about me:

- jason mulgrew homophobic
- jason mulgrew eats entire bags of dicks for breakfast
- jason mulgrew masturbates with crushed egg shells
- jason mulgrew real name


I'm pretty sure that the first and last searches were genuine, but I have to believe that someone who reads this blog and knows that every month we do this little post intentionally googled the middle two just so I would write about them. Or conversely, someone found out that I eat entire bags of dicks for breakfast and is trying to expose me. I haven't decided which.

- drunken injuries on spring break
- men's face crushed under women's asses [sexy pics and video clips]
- mom dad i'm gay
- my mom's bridge club likes to watch me masturbate
- snoring gay men video
- my large breasts keep getting larger
- disgusting child molester deformity puke doesn't look real
- i got drunk and woke up with a guy
- i wish to seduce ladyfriend
- want to masturbate on the internet for money
- whitney houston shits herself on airplane
- what part of kevin millar's body is fake


My favorite is probably "I wish to seduce ladyfriend". I mean, can't you just see from Eastern European guy, who hopelessly has a crush at the woman behind the deli Kenmare & Elizabeth, sitting down in an internet cafe to google ways to seduce her? The poor son of a bitch. I hope he eventually gets to F her.

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This week, Sammy Sosa passed Frank Robinson for fifth place for most home runs in Major League history.

My first reaction: "Really? Are we sure? Sammy Sosa is 5th all time? What?"

I guess that's what happens when you hit 292 home runs in 5 years (that's an average of 58.4 a season). I did some research, and when I was growing up, the top 10 in all time home runs was something like:

1) Hank Aaron
2) Babe Ruth
3) Willie Mays
4) Frank Robinson
5) Harmon Killebrew
6) Reggie Jackson
7) Mike Schmidt
8) Mickey Mantle
9) Jimmie Fox
10) (tie) Willy McCovey and Ted Williams

That's some serious shit right there. True baseball gods. Now's let look at the top ten as it stands today:

1) Hank Aaron
2) Babe Ruth
3) Barry Bonds
4) Willie Mays
5) Sammy Sosa
6) Frank Robinson
7) Mark McGwire
8) Harmon Killebrew
9) Rafael Palmeiro
10) Reggie Jackson

I'll give Bonds his due, because even before he become a steroid-freak he was still the greatest player of his generation. But to have Sosa, McGwire, and (gulp) Palmeiro on that list instead of Schmidt, Mantle, and Ted Williams, well, that makes me a little sad.

For all the statistical analysis that has been done for baseball, you'd think that there would be something to justify this, something to adjust numbers based on the era in which they were achieved (like adjusted ERA). For example, in 1921, Babe Ruth led the league with 59 home runs. The next highest guy, in either league, was Bob Meusel with 24 home runs. Ruth had roughly 145% more home runs that Meusel.

Conversely, in 2001, Barry Bonds hit 73 home runs, a hugely astronomical number. But the next guy was Sammy Sosa, with 63. Luis Gonzalez hit 57. A-Rod had 52 in the AL, and in both leagues, 19 additional players had 35 or more home runs (8 had 40+). The point: a shitload of players were hitting shitload of homeruns.

Why can't there be a formula that gives a mathematical value to the number of home runs hit per year, based on league-wide averages of that year? Something like, "One home run hit in 1974 is equivalent to 2.2 home runs hit in 2002". I dare not get into it, especially here, since I've bored you enough already. But it obvious that 500 home runs ain't what it used to be, and there should be some sensible mathematical formula that would allow us to better appreciate a guy like Mike Schmidt, who never hit more than 48 homers in a season - and only hit over 40 three times in 18 years - but was arguably the most feared power hitter of his generation, over a guy like Raffy Palmeiro, who has had a solid if not entirely unspectacular career.

(And yes, I'm biased here, but I don't think it's clouding my judgment too much)

Anyway, I'll stop now, because I can hear about 1/3 of you typing emails to me saying, "I hate sports" or "I had no idea what you were talking about." For those you who do know what I'm talking about, I love you.

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We have been having some trouble with the "read on" function on posts on the index page. If this happens, click on the "Everything is wrong with me" tab above. This is a collection of the most recent posts. This is not hard, people. Thank you in advance for not emailing me saying, "I CAN'T READ YOUR POST!!!!!!!"

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On June 9th, I wrote about an incident in which I got drunk, got some Cold Stone ice cream (cake batter, oreo, and whipped cream mix) and the came home and puked a bunch.

Last night my friend Corinne called with some terrible news. I did some searching and found this article, which says Cold Stone, on July 1, recalled all its cake batter ice cream because of a salmonella outbreak.

I'm not a doctor, and it is entirely possible that it was the dozen beers, then some ice cream, then the pizza, then some more ice cream that got me sick. But the question still remains: can I sue them? I sure hope so. I haven't been involved in litigation in four months and I miss the adrenaline rush.

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I should hope by now that it's obvious that I'm only doing this blog thing for rock stardom. Isn't that what everyone wants, to be a rock star? Unfortunately, though I play guitar and have the voice of an angel, I don't have enough talent to become a rock star. However, I do have band names already picked out, and they change constantly. Right now, I'd say my band name if I were to start a band would be either:

- Muslim Ron and the Juggernauts;
- The Center Street Jigglies; or
- Two Fat Guys in Chairs And [that's it - it ends with "And"]

I'll let you know if these change, but I don't think you can beat Muslim Ron and the Juggernauts. That's just gorgeous.

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Though I hinted at it and mentioned it in passing before, I am extremely grateful to those of you who donated. I know that I had to beg, give up my pride and generally sound like a douche, but really, any money donated was/is used to deflect the cost of running the site. It's just that, as I mentioned, this shit costs money - especially since I had to pay for more bandwidth - and my bank account is not exactly overflowing with cash. And there are a lot of you fuckers out there reading, so $1 from a bunch of you = a lot of help to me.

I could have gone the normal route and put some ads put, but like I said, it's tacky and it messes up the gorgeousness of the blog. Instead, I asked y'all (or rather, begged y'all) to send me a small token for helping you waste your employer's time and money, and many of you gave.

[And yes, I know begging is tacky too, but whatever. I think it's obvious I have very little pride anyway.]

I don't mean to get all soft on you, but I do thank you for giving and reading my whiney rants about it. Now we'll just move on before I start crying or some shit (not out of gratitude, but because I'm coming down from a major buzz right now and it's really hot in my office).

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While I'm saying my thank you's, thank you to everyone who gave me advice about LA and about digital cameras. I hope to enjoy many of the bars and restaurants you guys recommended, and if I'm able to do so, I certainly will. And as for the cameras...I was hoping that I would get 500 emails from you, each miraculously raving about the same exact camera, which would be head and shoulders above the rest. Instead, I got 500 emails from you, each pimping a different camera. I haven't bought one yet, but I will do so tomorrow. I'm probably just gonna go it and get whatever one they put in front of me, because I'm fixing to get drunk tonight and will be too hungover tomorrow for anything difficult.

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I will still post from LA, but remember the time zone difference. My days are busy, so I guess I'll write them at night and they'll be up then. I can't say how often, but I'll get you something. Probably.

And wish me luck. If this works out, things are going to get out of control very quickly. And I mean that in the awesomest way possible. Like:

CORONER'S REPORT
SUBJECT: Jason Mulgrew
DATE OF DEATH: June 24, 2006
LOCATION: Four Seasons Hotel, Room 412, Los Angeles, CA
CAUSE OF DEATH: cocaine- and hoagie-induced heart attack
NOTABLES: Subject had one testicle in Cambodian prostitute and one testicle in Nigerian prostitute. Subject's penis was in a pastrami sandwich. Written on walls of hotel room in ketchup or other tomato-based condiment was "MEAT FUCK!" sixteen times. Thirty-three pounds of food (mostly meat and dairy, though also a picture frame, a bicycle tire, a showerhead and $68,000) found in subject's impacted bowels. Shaved into subject's chest hair were words "I'm awesome".
AWESOMENESS OF DEATH: 9.4 out of 10

Thursday, July 28, 2005
 
emails!
Alright! It’s time for you guys to do all the work while I sit back and pass judgment! Yes, that’s right – I’m answering your emails.

Like I admitted before, I’ve been bad about emails. The People thing came out on June 17. By the time I left for vacation at the end of June, I had gotten a few thousand emails from people who had read the magazine and were either amused or horrified by my inclusion on this list. Then I went on vacation and couldn't really check email. When I got back, there were lots. I’m not bragging (well, I guess I am), but this is why for a while I sucked with returning emails.

The good news is that all the hype died down and most of the readers left, so I can actually read your emails and answer some of them. Here are some of the best I’ve received this week.

The first comes from Libba from Birmingham, AL. She has a question about an older post:

Jason,

I read your "Upper hand" post from- well, I can't remember because I've read pretty much the majority of your archives. Anyway, a guy in my class, Thomas, was telling me that his ex-girlfriend (dumped her before spring exams and she was pissed off/heartbroken) had started medical school this summer and was taking Gross Anatomy- you know, where everybody has a partner and you're assigned a cadaver to dissect over the course of the semester. Apparently, these med students always name their cadavers. Well, this girl names her cadaver "Thomas." What?! It seems to me that this is an unprecedented granting of the Upper hand to Thomas. I don't think there is a better way to let the person who dumped you know how "not over it" you are than to name your med school cadaver after them.

Thomas (my friend, not the cadaver) thought this was awesome and really funny. Definitely, upper hand for Thomas. Unfortunately, he decided after a couple of days to send her a really smartass "thank you for naming your cadaver after me" email. Here is where the argument ensues. I say that he has now lost the upper hand by giving her a reaction to her behavior. It would have been a lot cooler if he would have continued to laugh about it behind her back with his buddies. But, now I think that he conceded a half of the upper hand to her. What do you think?
I think that Thomas did not lose the Upper Hand. It would be nearly impossible for Thomas to lose the Upper Hand in this situation. I mean, my god. Women be crazy.

But you are right – Thomas did give her something back by a) contacting her; b) admitting that he knows about her “Thomas” cadaver; c) gloating about it.

Perhaps I didn’t explain this well enough last time. When a relationship ends, each person usually wonders what the other is thinking, what the other is doing, who the other is doing, etc. At this stage, the greatest sin a person can commit is to let the other know that he/she is thinking about him/her. After all, isn’t this the most basic human desire: to occupy the thoughts of another? Don't we want to believe that when it ends, we haunt the thoughts of our ex for days and weeks and months?

Therefore, the best thing you can do post-relationship, especially if you hold such an astounding Upper Hand, is, well, nothing. Feel free to gloat in private but the minute you let the ex know that you're thinking of him/her, you lose a bit of the Upper Hand and seem a little more pathetic. Nothing says "I'm over you" like a complete lack of communication and indifference toward the ex.

[When I first wrote this, I had a paragraph in which I used Eli Wiesel's quote, "The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference." However, I apparently grew a conscience because I took it out, realizing that maybe it's not so good to manipulate a quote originally describing the greatest evil humankind has ever known to talk about having one up on your ex. I am definitely, definitely dying.]

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The next email comes from James in Melbourne, Australia:

Mulgrew,

You really gotta cut out the cheese out of your breakfast diet or you're gonna have a heart attack.

Now I love cheese as much as the next guy, but unlike say, the cheese in a 'ham,cheese & tomato' sandwich the cheese just isn't required in a bacon & egg bagel.

Ask the British, they invented the 'Full English Breakfast' after all. Which by the way contains all kinds of shit: Baked beans, sausages, blood pudding (I don't even know what that last one is) but importantly NO CHEESE.

Give it shot Jason. It might even add a few years to your life
.
You know, I used to think that Americans and Australians had a lot in common before this email. When James wrote that cheese "isn’t required" with bacon and egg on a bagel, I made a promise right then and there: I would destroy Australia with my bare hands, even if it killed me.

I mean, what? Cheese should be "required" on EVERYTHING – from sandwiches to stand-alone meats to desserts to more cheese. To say that it’s not necessary on a bagel that already has bacon and egg, well, I don’t know what to say about that. So I just punched the wall. I hope you’re happy James. I hope you’re satisfied.

[And why are we holding up the "Full English Breakfast" as a culinary delight? I'm supposed to taking an eating cue from the British? That's like me giving advice on dieting or about how to make your girl happy on Valentine's Day. Sheesh.]

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Moving on, Cassandra from San Francisco writes:

Just read your tale of the stress test and must say that it has produced a recollection that I swore was buried never to be relived again just for the sheer horror of it all, but nope, so I shall share. I was a Biology major in college with a concentration in nuclear medicine which in one respect involved the preparation of the stress test - the shave, the probe placement and the sweaty run. And this one day after taking the appropriate background information from a woman, I asked her to remove her shirt wherein the shivering memory laid - she had chest hair, and very dramatic in fashion all across her chest and breasts. I not sure you can imagine the oddness of chatting with a woman about the weather when you are politely shaving her tarzanian mange of hair, but yeah, uncomfortable. So, thanks for the memory. I guess I should venture to ask - if one of these fortunate days you have the pleasure of viewing the breasts of a woman, and they were covered in hair, what exactly would you do?
Ok, first: eww. I mean, eww.

Now that that's out of the way, I may be lonely, but to quote Jack White, I ain't that lonely yet. Hair is bad on women and is one of the few absolute dealbreakers, even for me. To wit:

- I know of at least two instances off the top of my head wherein friends of mine did not pursue otherwise attractive women because of their slightly excessive arm hair;
- I personally did not pursue a girl about two years ago because my friends pointed out her "sideburns". Even though there were only faint traces of hair on the ear/cheek area, my friends talked about her sideburns so much I eventually started thinking they were worse then they actually were and couldn't proceed further;
- My freshman year of college, my buddy hooked up with a cute girl. Problem? She had nipple hair. Naturally, my buddy told everyone about this, and it eventually her nipple hair became so widely known on campus that by senior year even I wouldn't hook up with her, for fear of the repercussions and being ostracized by other women.
So a big "no-no" to women's hair.

And yes, I realize the irony here that I'm extolling the virtues of hairlessness when last time I went swimming shirtless I was shot because it was bear hunting season (and I was only 3 years old at the time), but c'mon - just roll with it.

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Last but certainly not least, we have Dante from NYC chiming in:

Jason-

I was reading Friday's post, and I think you should indeed make a list of guys you would sleep with for money. That's my 2.9 cents.

Do whatever you want, like I care. But as a 100% homosexual - OK, fine, maybe like 99.44% - please believe that I, personally, don't have any delusions about your non-gayness. You are a special kind of tool I like to think of as "the straight guy who might try to pick a fight with me, but not JUST because I'm gay" guy. You would probably be amusing to hang out with, but - make no mistake about it - you are definitely not smooth enough, in terms of personality and/or body hair, to be thought of as gay. A pussy maybe, but not gay. Even those girls who can't tell that their best friend (who sings show tunes and helps her tweeze her eyebrows) is gay can tell that you aren't. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Thus, your list would make people think not so much that you're gay, just that you are clueless. And we all pretty much already think that.

Furthermore, I can still be a 99.44% homosexual and list hot women I'd sleep with. I've always had in my mind the top two women I would bone if it were left to me to repopulate the planet. (God help us, should it come to that.) Alyssa Milano held the top spot for a VERY LONG time, but after I saw Jennifer Garner in 13 Going on 30 she moved into the top spot. I suspect her dancing in the Thriller dance number had a lot to do with it. How's THAT for gay? Very.

I've already begun contemplating who I think your top 10 men would be. So, without further delay:

The Top 10 Men I think Jason Mulgrew Would Sleep With for $50,000 (even though we all know that $10 and a 6-pack of beer would be enough for him in most cases.)

10. Johnny Knoxville - self-destructive chemistry at its best
9. Brad Pitt - because a solitary mention in People magazine isn't enough for you
8. Robert Downey Jr. - so you don't have to always feel like the screwed up one
7. Richard Simmons - to score a discount on a deck of deal-a-meal cards
6. James Lipton - it's your wet dream to have him ask you what your favorite curse word is
5. Tom Cruise - because THAT would be the best blog post OF ALL TIME
4. Hugh Hefner - why should the playmates get to have all the fun?
3. Geraldo Rivera - you know you have a thing for moustaches
2. Arnold Schwarzenegger - so you can feel safe and protected
1. Billy Dee Williams - because Ghostbusters rocked and you know it
Um, I don't think I can top that, so I'm just gonna leave it alone.

However, I do have to point out that Billy Dee Williams was not in "Ghostbusters". Could Dante perhaps be referring to Ernie Hudson or perhaps he is referring to Billy Dee's dramatic tour de force as Lando Calrissian in "Star Wars"? I suppose we will never know for sure.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005
 
the stress test
Last Friday was a pretty normal day. I woke up, showered, went to work, went to a cardiologist’s to get a stress test, came home, got drunk, went out, passed out. Standard really.

Except, of course, for the stress test (I was hoping that you’d pick up on that in the middle of the normal activities, but I think that’s giving you too much credit).

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this once, twice or maybe three hundred times before, but I am a hard-core hypochondriac. It’s a pretty big part of my life. If I had to make a list of my hobbies, it’d go something like:

- Music
- Hot chicks
- Having a blog
- Drinking lots of fucking beers
- Obsessing about my heartbeat and my death, including when I’m going to die, how I’m going to die, and whether I’m going to die in the next five to ten minutes because my chest hurts and I’m not sure if I’m imagining it or not but I feel kinda dizzy and sweaty and I know from webmd that these are signs of a heart attack and oh my god is that a shooting pain in my left arm or is it just in my head god I hate myself
- Kickin’ it

It’s an awful thing, to be a hypochondriac. Sometimes it can dominate your life. There are certain things that I can’t do when I’m feeling hypochondriacal, and sadly this includes taking drugs and abusing alcohol. Figures. Thanks again God, for everything. You really did a good job on me. Ass.

It comes and goes though. Some days, I’ll feel indestructible. Some days, I’ll wake up and eat a whole pizza, go back to bed, get my heart racing in some robbery or other felony, and not think twice about it. Other days, I’ll wake up with a pain in my back and convince myself that it’s a tumor and I only have three hours to achieve my life-long goal: to get it on with two chicks at once in a fancy hotel room with a waterfall while Elvis Costello sings and plays guitar and Mike Schmidt takes batting practice and there are big plates of spaghetti and meatballs everywhere and I get a perfect score on the SAT.

But in the summer, especially this summer, it’s pretty bad. First and most obviously, it’s hot, and this summer has been brutal in this department. I spend all of the day and most of the night sweating and panting (how many of you have boners right now?). Second, I like to listen to my iPod and walk around NYC. This is basically the only "exercise" I get, and I can’t do it when the heat index is 102°. Third, summer is great for, "Since it’s 96°, I’m going to get a pint of ice cream and eat it in the air conditioning! I don’t care if it’s 9am! It’s hot out! Maybe I’ll get one for later too! Or two! I love it! Fuck yeah!" So that doesn’t help either.

And then there was what we call in the entertainment industry the "inciting incident": the crazy heart palpitations I had while playing with my aunt’s dog a few weeks ago (good band name: My Aunt’s Dog).

But I figured that this time I’d do something about it. So I called my doctor and told him I wanted a stress test. This was ballsy for me. See, hypochondriacs are usually cowards. Usually, when forced to talk to a doctor about my hypochondria, I pull the tough guy routine:

Doctor: "So you want to talk about how you’re feeling?"
Me: "Yeah, no, it’s nothing. It’s just stupid. It’s just that I’m under a lot of stress and all."
Doctor: "What do you do for a living again?"
Me: "Um, I do marketing for a law firm."
Doctor: [unimpressed] "Oh."
Me: "But I’ve been under stress in a lot of other ways. It’s just that, um, my gym is closing, so that’s got me pretty bummed out. Also, um, world events. World events have me bummed out. But overall I’m fine."
Doctor: "So when you left a message on my office voicemail at 4am on Tuesday sobbing about how your chest hurt – that’s because your gym is closing?"
Me: "Yeah, I’m really attached to it, so it’s stressing me out. And world events too. That shit is messed up."

But this time there was no backing down. I called him and said I wanted to get a stress test. He acquiesced (easily, I might add; perhaps he’s getting tired of dealing with me) and then prescribed me 100 more Xanax! JACKPOT!!!

So this was all starting well. I made the appointment and on the day of, brought in a little gym bag into work with me with a change of clothes. I was ready for this stress test.

Though I had never had one before, I had a pretty good idea about what a stress test was. Basically, they hook up all this crap on you to measure your heart rate while you walk and maybe even run on a treadmill. The "run" part is a problem. Oh, and you’re shirtless. Um, yeah, problem.

There are very, very few things that I never do. Even though I despise any unnecessary activity, every once in a while I’ll be overcome by a desire to use my body for more than consumption and self-induced orgasms and my roommate Brian and I will throw the old pigskin around (of course, this lasts all of about three minutes before I need some Gatorade and Brian needs a cigarette). Even though I am terrible with women and entering them, sometimes I do get laid (or rather, sometimes in the past I have gotten laid). Even though God and I are on not-so-good terms, I still sack up and go to church occasionally (though admittedly only to spy on Him).

But two things that I never ever do are a) run and b) be shirtless. And this stress test required both. Yikes.

I showed up at the place and thankfully it was empty. I came in with a cocky attitude, because I had an excuse. I’m ashamed to admit it, but my excuse was "My girlfriend made me do this."

Yes, apparently we are in junior high, because I invented a girlfriend to make me look better in the eyes of others. Only in this case I’m not trying to look cooler by telling the kids in algebra about my camp girlfriend who lives upstate; I’m telling the nurses and doctors of Manhattan Cardiac about my overly cautious girlfriend to sound saner. I have come so far in the past fifteen years. I wonder if I still have my therapist’s number?

So that was my story and I stuck with it. I was admitted to an examination room where a guy and a girl (who were nurses or medical assistants or whatever) asked me a battery of medical history questions. As always, there was a sore spot.

Guy nurse: "Do you drink?"
Me: [wincing] "Lil’ bit."
Guy nurse: "Do you smoke?"
Me: "Smoke what?"
Guy nurse: [looking at me] "Cigarettes?"
Me: "No, no cigarettes."
Guy nurse: "Anything else?"
Me: "No, no. No."

God I love lying.

Then they explained the procedure. They were going to put some thingees on me – I’m not sure what they’re called, but they’re little suction cup-like things that you see put on people in hospital dramas. Then they were going to put my height and weight into the computer to determine my average heart rate. Then I’d get on the treadmill to slowly build toward that heart rate while they monitored what my heart was doing. I would only be on the treadmill eight to ten minutes. Then the fun began.

"Do you have a hairy chest, sir?"

Not want you want to hear from a guy in his late-twenties wearing a white coat, but them’s the breaks. I answered, "Oh god, yes." That got a slight chuckle from the female nurse, who, of course, was pretty good-looking. The male nurse went on, "Well sir I’m going to have to shave certain areas of it, because if hair gets trapped under the [thingees], it will throw off the readings. Please remove your shirt."

I did. And for the next two solid minutes, this guy shaved patches out of my fucking chest hair. Good lord.

It was quite an interesting two minutes. The guy nurse was shaving me while the girl nurse watched him, while I sat upright on the little reclining chair you sit on with the wrinkly paper, thinking, "Think happy thoughts - think happy thought - think happy thoughts." The silence was very uncomfortable, so I started talking about my "girlfriend". "Man, my girlfriend is going to get a kick out of this!", I said as the guy continued to shave me. He didn't say anything, but the girl nurse sort of gave a smile. I kept staring at the wall and after what felt like a day and a half, it was over. I now had two hairless holes on my chest, one hairless hole on each side of my neck/shoulder area, and one hairless line under my left man-boob, from my side to the middle of my chest. Sweet. Super sweet even.

So he threw away the little disposable razor and grabbed some goo. The goo, he explained, was to keep the thingees on during the test. So he put some goo in his hand, smoothed it over his hands, and started rubbing this goo all over my shirtless, fat, partially shaved chest. GOOD LORD. Again, this man was rubbing goo all over my patchily-haired flabby torso. Quite an erotic scene.

By the time that was over, I was getting confused and nauseous, so I didn't even noticed when he put the suction cup thingees on me. When that was done, we walked into the room with the treadmill.

Before I got on the treadmill, they strapped some sort of battery pack on me, wrapping it around my body so that it sat in the middle of my stomach. This battery pack was the nerve center of the device - all the suction cups were hooked into it, and it in turn was hooked into a big-ass computer that showed my heart rate and my heart beat. Once everything was securely fastened, I got on the treadmill.

When they said I'd be on the treadmill eight to ten minutes, I thought, "That's nothing. It'll be over in no time." I could NOT be more wrong here. Eight to ten minutes, when you're half-naked and partially shaved walking on a treadmill with shit and wires all over your body in front of people you don't know, is a long-ass time. Not only that, but unlike the gym, which has music playing or tvs around or at least the hum of the other exercise machines, this room was completely silent, save for my treadmill. The two nurses didn't speak, I didn't speak. Just a hum and me panting while they stared at the machine.

After about two minutes on the treadmill, another nurse walked in. I had seen her earlier, when I was in the waiting room. She walked into the office and into the back in plain clothes, and I thought, "Please don't let her attend to me" because she was good-looking. Sure enough, here she was again in her nurse's uniform, saying hello to me and monitoring my heartbeat. I had been only slightly sweaty before, but now it was like I just got out of a pool.

As an aside, I should take a minute to explain my back hair situation. I, Jason Mulgrew, have back hair. I am not ashamed of this (lie). I don't wax it or shave it. To get it waxed would be too embarrassing. There's no way I'm walking into some salon to have some chick rip hair out of my back. And I don't shave it either, because it would only grow back thicker. Also, if I know anything about women, it's that they don't like stubble, be it on a man's face, chest, back, whatever (though I'm still not sure if they like back hair apparently). Also again, though Brian drinks a lot, I don't think he drinks enough to shave my back for me.

However, I usually groom the back hair with a device I invented. The device consists of my beard trimmer (without its attachment) fastened to a ruler with rubber bands. This allows me to trim the back hair into oblivion without removing it entirely via waxing or shaving. Also, I can reach my entire back without assistance because of this device. This is probably the greatest idea/invention I've ever had.

My beard trimmer is rechargeable, like a cell phone. I recently lost this charger, so when it ran out of juice, that was it. My beard grew thick and I had to trim it with scissors. My back hair went unchecked and grew to Bigfoot-esque proportions. There was simply nothing I could do about it prior to my appointment. So as I ran on the treadmill, I was basically a giant, sweaty ball of hair, except where I had been shaved, of course.

[And if that info about the back hair was too much for you, know that I, um, was lying. Yeah, that's it - I was just kidding. At any rate, I found the beard trimmer charger this weekend, charged it up, and now the back hair has been neatly groomed. Thank you.]

So the new attractive nurse looks over my sheet and asks me how old I am. I say that I just turned 26. Without skipping a beat, the male nurse says, "He doesn't look 26, does he?"

Thanks dude. I'm right here, and I'm not deaf. Yeah, I know I'm hairy, but I can't help it. Guess what? In addition to being hairy, I'm also fucking famous. So suck it. At least I don't shave body hair and rub goo on fat hypochondriacs for a living, cocksucker.

Fortunately, my time on the treadmill was coming to an end. The average heart rate for someone my size is 164 beats per minute, and we were just about there. I started making myself panicky to raise my heart rate, thinking about werewolves, sharks, black people and other things that make me scared, and got to 164. At that point, the cute nurse said to her colleagues, "I want to get him to 185 to make sure."

In a way, this was reassuring. They obviously could tell I was crazy - what 26 year-old gets a stress test? So I thought it was nice of her to verbalize that we're were going to go that extra mile (literally) to make sure I was sound as a pound.

But on the other hand, I was sweating like a pig and just about tired of briskly walking half-naked in front of these strangers in this silent room. At that moment, the treadmill kicked it up a notch and I had to actually start running to keep up with it. I watched the machine as my heart rate went up...166...168...171...175...

Finally it got to 185 and the treadmill started slowing down. I was panting heavily at this point and just wanted a big bowl of ice cream. I sat down on the wrinkly paper and as the guy nurse was removing my battery pack and suction cups, he said, "Well, it appears that everything is fine. No abnormalities, no stress, nothing unusual. The doctor will review the readings and get the results to your doctor on Monday." He directed me to the first room, where I got dressed, made my co-payment and left and I could not have gotten out of there quicker. Done and done.

The good news: immediately after it was over, I felt 100% better and less hypochondriacal. There is nothing that beats hypochondria like real medicine, and even I could tell there was nothing wrong with my heart as I watched it beep-beep beep-beep on the monitor. Since I left, I haven't felt like I was going to die even once. Not once! Score!

And how did I celebrate? By eating the worst foods possible, of course! On Saturday, the day after the test, my diet consisted of:

- Breakfast: bacon, egg, cheese bagel, piece of carrot cake
- Lunch: Tostito's, french fries
- Snack: Coldstone ice cream
- Dinner: Tostito's, pizza, 20 beers
- Dinner II: remainder of pizza, way too many pretzels dipped in nutella

Ah, nothing like being stripped down and partially shaved by a stranger to bring back my old joie de vivre!

So in the end, it was worth it and I have no regrets. And my chest hair, which has an amazing capacity for growth, has already begun filling in the shaved patches! And the best part is that when I start feeling hypochondriacal again, which should be sometime next week when I wake up in the middle of the night to sneeze, I can just go back and get another stress test! Hooray!

Although next time, I'll definitely shave myself beforehand. That, or I'll just get my "girlfriend" to do it. When I visit her upstate, of course.

Monday, July 25, 2005
 
weekend notes
Friends of mine, a married couple, recently had a baby. On Friday after work, I went to see the baby. And I mean, wow. I really love babies.

I don't mean to be getting all soft on you or anything. I'm just as bitter and angry as I've always been. And I'm pretty sure I'm not dying (at least 60% sure). Nor have I found God or anything like that. He and I are still not anywhere close to reconciling, especially since two weeks ago I called Him at 4 in the morning to leave an angry rant on his voicemail about how quickly milk goes bad and how expensive condoms are.

And it's not like I'm unfamiliar with babies. I am the second oldest cousin on both sides of my family. On one side, I have fifteen cousins. On the other, twenty-four. The point is that I grew up around babies...it seems like I had at least one cousin born every year for about twenty years.

But I'll tell you, maybe it was the tequila, but seeing this baby really got me. And I immediately made a decision without seriously thinking about it: I want one.

I know what you're thinking, "Aren't you the same guy who fell off his roof two weeks ago because he drank a bottle of shampoo and tried to fly?" Well, yes, that's true. Although it wasn't technically "falling off", as I did get a pretty good running start. Just pointing that out.

All I know is that that baby was the most wonderful thing I had ever seen. Upon seeing it, I forgot about my low self-esteem, my drinking problems, my sexual, physical and mental impotence, and all those crimes I committed in Ohio, Illinois, Tennessee, Oregon, Washington, Pennsylvania, and New York from 1988 until 1995. And three times last week.

I realize that in order to have a baby one most procure the help of a real live woman. All I can say about this is that I'm working on it. I won't take any further questions, because they are just too painful.

Two side notes about my baby experience:

1) Everyone came to the new parents' house with gifts for the baby: clothes, stuffed animals, toys, etc. I showed up with a bottle of Grey Goose. Some people made fun of me for this, but I thought this was perfectly acceptable. Who needs a gift more: the baby who's been sleeping, eating, and pooping every three hours or the parents who have been harried and sleepless since its birth? Mulgrew: 1, Others: 0.

2) There was a lot of talk about how expensive baby clothes are. I think this is kinda moot. Why would you care what your baby wears anyway? The baby doesn't have any idea what it's wearing, so why not just drape it in old t-shirts for the first few years? Of course, you can start buying the child clothes when it gets school-age, maybe five or six, because you don't want him/her getting picked on. But in the meantime, why not save the cash for other crap and fit him in your old Zeppelin shirt? Seems pretty simple to me.

**********************************

A lot of the emails I get go something like this:

"Dude, you rock. Mostly because by being so terrible, you make me feel better about my miserable life. You should write more about New York City. I love New York City."
I don't exactly know how to respond to this, because I don't really know what you all want me to say that I don't say already about NYC. It's cool. And beer is expensive. Otherwise, not bad.

Do you want me to name drop? Not that I can name drop, since I know only about seven people here now, but should I say things about where I go? Like, "On Saturday, went to Anatomy in Alphabet City. It was cool. Had to leave though, because Brian somehow lost a shoe. Then caught a cab to 151 in the LES. God, that place was so much cooler before all the frat boys discovered it (much like 6s & 8s, which now can get so fratty they might as well set up a beer pong table in the middle of the fucking bar). Disdain, disdain in your general direction."

Well, I can't do that. It's too tiresome. So I'm glad you like NYC and I thank you your suggestion, but this isn't a travel guide. So don't expect to hear about a bar unless I really, really hate it or it's really, really awesome. Thank you.

**********************************

Prior to going out on Saturday night, a couple of buddies of mine were pre-gaming at my place, drinking beers and eating pizza. Something that might shock you about me is that I don't drink beer with food (if you start to feel light-headed because of this information, please sit down). For me, it's a separate thing - there's eating, which is glorious, and there's drinking, which is also glorious. I don't like mixing the two.

So on Saturday night when the pizzas came, I finished my beer and got some Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper, which is a pretty fucking awesome soda. I don't usually drink soda, but I did so here, because it is delicious and also because it gives me a little jolt of caffeine.

(Another thing about me is that I rarely have caffeine. I don't drink coffee, tea, or soda, so the only time I get my caffeine is on the weekends when I have a few red bulls to kick start the night. Because I don't have it during the week, when I drink these red bulls, they hit me very hard and really get me going. It's like a safer, cheaper cocaine, although you're not as likely to start a fight with a wall on red bull. But I digress...)

Anyway, my buddy Jeremy was over having some drinks and he tried some of the Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper. I said, "Pretty good soda, right?" To which he replied, from his reclined position on the couch, chewing on a giant mouthful of pizza, "Eh, too many words."

We all shared a laugh and nearly peed ourselves, mostly because of the alcohol and drugs going through our systems. Sadly, that was the highlight of my Saturday night.

I think I need new friends.

**********************************

I went to Cold Stone twice this weekend and came to a conclusion: the singing has to stop. Whenever you tip them, one yells, "Hey guys, we got a tip!" and they all break into song. It is very, very uncomfortable.

I went on Saturday and it wasn't a big deal, because when I tipped them the place was packed with people and there were a lot of Cold Stone workers behind the counter singing, so I just got the hell out of there and let the crowd deal with the song. But when I went on Sunday, there were only three employees working and myself and another woman in the store. So when I got my ice cream I tipped and sure enough, the three employees started singing. I didn't know if I was supposed to sit there and listen to them sing or what, but I got the hell out of there and let the other customer deal with it. Very, very uncomfortable.

The sad thing is that I don't think I can tip these guys anymore. I mean, I really want to - what with them giving me a delicious and over-sized ice cream treat - but I can't take that singing. And I feel like if I tried to tip the guy but said something like, "You don't have to sing", it would turn into some Larry David-esque episode with him calling me out on it and saying, "What? You don't like our cheerful singing?" and then a customer saying, "Yeah - what's wrong with you?" and then some hot chick saying, "He's just bitter because he's fat!" But unlike Larry David, I would grab a fucking chair and hit the bitch who called me fat and would scream "You fucking bitch! I will kill you and shit on your grave! I will shit on your fucking grave in front of your family and your pets! I was in People fucking magazine! Do you know who the fuck I am! I have a blog! I have a fucking blog!". I am sensitive about my weight.

So sorry, no more tips.

**********************************

I am thinking of buying a digital camera in the $200 - $250 price range. I need help with this. I know nothing about digital cameras, but I want something small and something that can hold a lot of pictures (I got a free digital camera last year when I got my laptop that held a whopping ten pictures) and easy to use. I don't need any fancy bells and whistles, since most of the pictures will be taken in close range and of my scrotum.

If you can help me with this by offering some suggested models, please send me an email. Now that y'all know what I look like, I wouldn't mind putting pictures on this site. However, that is probably a ways off and reading that last sentence most likely gave Site Guy Brendan a heart attack, as he now knows I'm going to start stalking him about this.

[And I promise to be better with emails in the future in the hopes of resurrecting the "Email of the Week" thingee that I did a few months back. There were some really good ones that I didn't get a chance to respond to, so my bad.]

Friday, July 22, 2005
 
heat and women, LA thoughts, London, censorship, fat, music
Statistic of the Week:

The temperature in my apartment on Wednesday, July 20, at 12:16am: 90°.

90°! After midnight! What the f!

It’s hot in NYC. Like, real hot. Uncomfortable hot. Not good. And though we have air conditioners in our bedrooms, Brian and I do not have an AC in the living room, which means I spend a lot of time in bed. Not that this is a bad thing, but when it's midnight and I leave my room to go make a pork sandwich and I almost pass out in the hallway because it's so hot, well, that's a bad thing.

But there is one good thing to come out of heat: slightly sweaty women. I’m not talking heifers here, walking around eating giant sandwiches and sweating through their shirts, but rather normal attractive women who, because of the unbelievable heat, walk around with a slight glow to them.

And today on my walk home I realized why I like this little bit of sweatiness. Because

sweat:women::glaze:donuts

Yes, I am fat. But no, I do not care. I like my donuts and my women a little shiny, wet, and covered in crystallized sugar. I make no apologies for this. And screw you for judging me.

I don't know why the sweat does it for me, but it just does. I know for women, it doesn't work the other way around. Sweaty guys are not hot (I would guess). Especially me. When I sweat, all my body hair gets matted down and becomes dark and I look like a black bear. But I digress...

So add slight sweatiness to the list of things I think are hot. If you're keeping score at home, I like:

- slight sweatiness
- the messy ponytail
- tanness
- girls who can dance
- lip gloss
- hoop earrings

Apparently, I like strippers. So be it.

*************************************

A few things about my upcoming LA trip:

1) Thank you to all of you who emailed me. I asked you guys to bring it (info about LA) and you didn’t let me down. Now I have the daunting task of figuring out how to process and best use all this new information. I have to be honest with you – it doesn’t look good. For some crazy reason, I feel like instead of doing all the cool things and going to all the cool places you’ve recommended, I’m going to get drunk in my room and then sit by the pool and oogle women. But that’s just an educated guess.

2) A few of you wrote in saying, "Um, you’re staying in Beverly Hills and asking us for money to help pay for that? You would have gotten a lot more sympathy (and more cash) if you said you were showing up with a backpack and sleeping in the airport."

Two things: I’m not staying in BH by choice. I was told to stay there because it is close to everything. Two, I do have a job, so I can pay for this trip – now. What concerns me is what my life is going to be life when I come back. I imagine it will involve a lot of hot dogs, angel hair pasta, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Oh, and lots of homemade booze that is really just ground-up houseplants and a few squirts of Fantastik in a glass of Hawaiian Punch. Can’t wait.

*************************************

There are no jokes to be made about the bombings in London. None at all. And of course I’m kidding.

I’m no expert on diplomacy or world religions or even how I can get the space where my thighs meet my crotch to stop smelling like hot garbage and burnt ham, but I do know one thing: if I were a Muslim person living in London, NYC, or any other big city, I might leave my backpack/school bag at home for a little while. I don’t know – maybe that’s just me, but that’s what I’d do. Also I'd probably stick to tight-fitting t-shirts, some spandex shorts, and some flip-flops. But again, that's just me.

Yesterday, when I got on the subway to leave work, you could feel the tension. And that’s saying something, because New Yorkers are a very tough and resilient people. I wasn’t here after the first London bombings (I was on vacation), so I can’t speak for the mood of the city. But I was here during 9/11, and after the initial shock of that tragedy wore off, the city adopted a "Fuck you – try that again mother fucker" attitude. You could feel it all around. People went about their daily lives with an obstinance that was both admirable and just plain ballsy.

But last night on the subway, it was different. It’s not as though people were visibly shaken or anything, but all throughout the subway car you could feel eyes scouring everything in sight, checking for anything suspicious. Obviously, this has something with London being hit twice – if they can do it once, they can do it again. Something was different.

I’m not really sure where I’m going with this, so I’ll stop now. I just wanted to get that whole "Muslims should leave their backpacks at home" joke in, and mission accomplished. Also, I’m tired.

*************************************

In a rare behind-the-scenes look at www.jasonmulgrew.com: I’m thinking of writing a post titled, "Ten Dudes I'd Do For Fifty Grand". That title is self-explanatory, so I’ll spare you further details.

However, I’m a little concerned that if I write this post, many people might think I’m – how do I say this – extremely homosexual. Again, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’d like to have sex with a living, consensual woman again at some point in the future, and I already have enough turn-offs (weight, body hair, low self-esteem, violence against animals, etc) that I don’t need to add "100% gay" to that list.

I asked a couple of female friends about this and they all said the same thing: don’t do it. Their reasoning was “What if you go on a date and the girl googles you?” I responded that it’s much too late for that, and this website has disqualified me from all future employment and from marrying anyone that I don’t already know.

Not only that, I already make jokes about being gay or performing gay acts. But, like everything in this site, I do it in a satirical nature (remember, I’m actually a 38 year-old stay at home from Syracuse). But something about so concretely and explicitly laying out my desires (untrue as they may be) to bone another dude, well I don’t know about that.

Why am I telling you all this? Because this is the first time I’ve ever thought before I wrote. Usually I think, "Wow – I just got an idea for an awesome post about burning down black churches!" and up that post goes. But this time, perhaps because I’m getting old, I’m hesitant. Hmm...

I don’t have an answer here. We’ll just have to see what happens over the next few days.

*************************************

Gluttonous triumph of the week:

1) Take a French Vanilla Milano cookie

2) Dip it in some nutella

3) Ejaculate all over yourself and your new pants because it’s just that fucking good

You will thank me later.

*************************************

Six Songs

- "Mexicali Blues" Grateful Dead
This is already the theme song for my upcoming LA trip. I’d love to go to Mexico for a day to live out this song (14 year-old girl, booze, gunfight, etc), but I don’t know if I’m up for it. I don’t know much about Mexico, but from what I’ve heard it’s pretty fucking hot there. So perhaps I’ll just stay in the air conditioned hotel room and listen to this song. Same thing, really.

- "Acetate" Speechwriters LLC
This song is for gay/loser best friends everywhere. It goes, "If he’s the one you want to go to bed with/And I’m the one you wanna wake up next to/I can put myself on acetate to make it easier for you." I have no idea what acetate is, but that’s not important. What is important is that I wish someone had sat me down when I was 12 and said, "Listen – you can be her best friend, the one she calls first with her problems, the one she calls every night to talk, but you are never going to have sex with her. Ever. She is hot and you are not. So aim lower and get to work on the fat chicks." If someone had broken it down for me thusly, the past fifteen years would have been a lot smoother and more efficient. And no, I’m not bitter.

- "Mother Of Pearl" Roxy Music
A few weeks back, I wrote how Roxy Music was very hit-or-miss. Their songs were either kick-ass or crap (in my opinion). And this song perfectly encapsulates this. The first minute and a half is crap, whereas the rest is just frickin’ awesome. If you don’t believe me, check it out for yourself.

- "Turn" Travis
A pretty little ditty based on a simple three chord structure (E-A-B from what I can tell). I’m always amazed when bands can write such pretty songs around such simple music. Amazed and jealous. More jealous, actually.

- "She Came In Through The Bathroom Window" Joe Cocker
The thing I like best about Joe Cocker’s voice is that whenever he sings, it sounds like he’s been sitting in a pub, drinking and smoking cigarettes for the past five hours. I can picture a dive British pub with a bunch of limey guys sitting around drinking pints, when one says, "Why don’t you give us a song, Joe?" And he takes a sip, gets up, goes up there with the lame local band, and fucking belts it out. But maybe that’s just how I see it. Oh, and awesome song.

- "Sound and Vision" David Bowie
If you’re high at a beach house and the stereo is blasting and you sort of walk off to the side while the rest of your friends are playing card games and smoking and drinking and you want a song you can dance to, well, my friend, this is it. You’ll thank me later.

God I am going to get so high tonight and dance like a mother fucker to this song.

[Have a good weekend]

Wednesday, July 20, 2005
 
burning and fighting in LA
I am going to be in Los Angeles for the first week of August. God help us all.

I can not divulge my reasons for going at this juncture. I'm not doing this to be a dick (although I admittedly am a dick). And it's not one of those "If I told you, I'd have to kill you" things. It's actually more like "If I told you, you too would probably get all excited, only to have your high hopes and lofty dreams of getting blowjobs from aspiring actresses and doing cocaine in a hot tub (while getting a blowjob from an aspiring actress) come crashing, burning, kicking, and screaming to the ground, leaving you homeless, impotent and even perhaps incarcerated" thing. That kind of pain should only be reserved for someone like me, so I'm keeping you in the dark for your own benefit.

And so off to LA. I've only been there twice and know very little about the city. Once was in the summer of 2002 for a wedding, at which the worst wedding toast I'd ever seen was given. The groom was a comedy writer, as were several of his friends. Each guy in the wedding party gave a little toast, and as you would expect, they were awesome. But then one guy got up and did a Matt Foley impression as a toast and what followed was arguably the most uncomfortable two minutes of my life, right up there with the time my Sociology of Crime & Punishment professor caught me trying to give myself a blowjob in the basement of Fulton Hall and when I accidentally gave my dad a dildo for Christmas. The guy went off on his Matt Foley spiel and immediately everyone at the head table put their heads down, as all the guests in at the wedding who were not between the ages of 20 and 35 whispered to each other, "What is he doing? Who is he supposed to be? What is going on here?" The best part was that the bride and groom had to look entertained and grateful while this guy was bombing, and the bride had a "I can't believe this is happening at my wedding" smile on her face. I could see this being potentially awesome if the guy was wasted out of his mind and was doing it to be a jerkoff. But he was honestly trying and really wanted it to work and just fucking bombing. Horribly uncomfortable. Good booze though.

The second time I was in LA was in September of 2003 when I visited a friend who lived in Marina del Ray for a week. My week consisted of sitting on the beach, drinking Pacifico, eating burritos, and watching her friends do obscene amounts of cocaine and talk about what commercials they were in. I also got a pretty good joke out of that week:

Tom (one of the guys my friend lived with): "Man, last night got a little crazy."Me: "Yeah, it was pretty wild."Tom: "Yeah, I was just taking it easy when all of a sudden all this coke just fell up my nose!"
Me: "I know - I saw that."Tom: "I don't know how it happened. I was just hanging out and then all of a sudden there was just all this cocaine in my bloodstream!"

I still use that one sometimes ("I don't know how the $200 from your dresser got into my pocket Brian - I guess it just fell in there!").

But back to my current trip. I'll be staying in Beverly Hills, and though I'll have a rental car, I will try to use it as little as possible. So I need the following information from my LA peeps:

1) The coolest bars in Beverly Hills. I don't mean "coolest" as in "hippest". If you've read even a little of this site, you should have a pretty good idea of what my tastes in bars are.

2) The nearest In-N-Out burger in Beverly Hills. The last time I had one was two years ago and I think I'm still burping it up. I mean this in a good way.

3) Any other good eateries (pizza, Mexican, etc) in the area that I should be aware of.

4) Any advice on nudey bars would be helpful, but I think I'll make it if I go without paying to see boobies for a week.

5) Any other general advice that I should know about Beverly Hills and LA (and yes, I know the traffic sucks).

I'm not going to stay with you and I'm not going to hang out either. I suck in real life and would like to keep this secret from you. But if you have any advice for me, I'm willing to listen.

For part of the trip I will be joined by my buddy Joe. Since the wheels should come off about three hours after he arrives, we have dubbed this the "Burning and Fighting in LA 2005" Tour. No, not quite the caliber of "Drunk Until You Shit", but not bad nonetheless.

Some goals for this trip:

1) Get extremely fucking rich and famous;

2) Marry a 16 year-old Mexican girl. Our wedding songs will be 112's "Cupid" and an original piece, "Tengo un Fuego Para Ti (En Mis Pantalones)", which I've been writing on and off for about eight months now;

3) Break (or at least tie) the record for "most milligrams of Xanax consumed on a single plane ride without heart stoppage".

I don't think any of these are out of reach. Wish me luck.

[In other news, I thought my "handlers" would pay for my trip out to LA. This is not the case and if I want to be a real life celebrity, I have to come up with some major cash - quickly. NYC to LA round-trip airfare + six nights in hotel in Beverly Hills + rental car = Jason not eating anymore and possibly living with his parents for a month. This trip is going to cripple me financially. I know I say that a lot, but seriously - I don't know what I am going to do about food/shelter for a good month when I return to NYC. However, I have to go (to LA). So (like you didn't see this coming) if you haven't already donated, please do so. I know I've been asking a lot, but I kinda really need it now. The good news is that years from now, you'll be able to tell your children, "You know, I helped launch that Jason Mulgrew's career by helping him pay for his first real trip to LA". And your kids will say, "Jason Mulgrew? Didn't he die in some sort of tire fire?" And you'll say, contentedly, "Yes. Yes he did."]

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
 
the weekend in reverse order
I'll spare you the suspense: nothing exciting happened at my birthday party. I know this opener doesn't exactly lure the reader in, but I also know that you are just so fucking bored at work you're going to keep reading anyway, so to hell with it.

But 26 is not a fun age anyway. 25 – sure. 25 is mid-twenties, smack in the middle. 25 = c-e-l-e-b-r-a-t-e. But 26? It's crap. The next big birthday I'll have is 30, and let's not kid ourselves; there is no way I'm making it to 30. Good lord. I have a better shot of winning Ms. America or not jerking off in my roommate Brian's shampoo when he pisses me off than living until 30. But let's change the subject because I'm starting to get sad.

The good news is that this year's party was better than last year's. In some ways, at least. We had the party this year at Iggy's Keltic Lounge, the same place that we had the miserable party last year. You might ask why we would return after such a horrible time. The answer is that my roommate Brian and I don't really have a go-to bar. Sure, we go out a lot, and sure, we know a lot of bars in the city, and sure, one time at work I shit out a 24 oz. can of Miller Genuine Draft, but we don't have a home base.

The Keltic was the closest thing we ever had to a home base. We lived only a block away from this place for two years (July 2002 - June 2004). Not only that, the beer was reasonably priced and the jukebox was excellent. More importantly, it never really got crowded. So when it came time to pick a spot, we had no other recourse. Back to the Keltic, for better or worse.

Fortunately, the air conditioning worked this year. Thus it was better than last year (though it was still plenty hot). But unlike last year, this year NO ONE CAME.

Before I go off on all my "friends" who didn't come to my party, a few things:

1) I owe a big thank you to everyone who did come. It was nice to see you, and I appreciate you stopping by. I hope you enjoyed yourself, and I enjoyed myself when I hung out with you. Really. It was only when I looked out to see all 10 people there did I think, "Where the fuck is everybody?" and thus became enraged. Otherwise, it was a great time.

2) I fully realize that I suck as a friend. And as I went over the list of no-shows in my head, I realized that over the years I have not attended many of their parties, preferring instead to sit in my apartment to watch VH1 Classic and drink Bud Bombers, ignoring their calls and text messages asking where I am. So I should understand why they didn't come to mine. And I do. But I still hate them. You know, being a generally hateful person and all.

3) I am not the type of person who derives self-worth from the approval and/or love of others (biggest lie I've ever told in my life). Nor am I an annoying birthday person, the type of guy who has to have everyone stop everything to celebrate the day he was born (still a lie, not as big as the first). It is important for you to know this.

Having said all that, last year, even though the party sucked (no air conditioning, too crowded with people I didn't know), I'd say about 150 friends were there at various points of the night. I felt awesome about this. Loads of people were there to wish me a happy birthday, my buddies were there to buy me a shot, and my female friends were there to let me linger a little too long after getting a kiss on the cheek. Despite the lack of AC, these things made me happy.

But this year, no dice. When we got to the bar at 10pm, I was happy to see that it wasn't crowded, meaning my friends and I would have plenty of room to hang out. Unfortunately, I thought this same thing at midnight. And then at 1am. Then at 2:30am. Etc, etc, etc.

So to my friends who didn't come, you have made a serious mistake. As I have mentioned here before, I am good at holding three things: titties, hoagies, and grudges, so you're all fucked. Not only that, your timing couldn't have been worse, what with me on the cusp of super-stardom (more on this some other time). So I will see you all in hell, where I will make sure to come over and kick you in the basement. We are no longer friends. Unless you are one of my attractive female friends and you would like to seduce me to make up for your no-show. Because then everything will be ok. Because god I am so lonely.

[And really, I have no stories from the evening. Just a back of friends, standing around in a controlled environment, drinking beer. I am sorry that I let you down, but you should know that I feel even worse. So suck it.]

***************************************

Speaking of being lonely, I do have one little nugget worth sharing from this weekend. My buddies Joe and Bill were in town from Boston this weekend. On Friday night, a handful of us went out to – what else – drink beer and not talk to girls. We drank a bunch at the apartment and then hit the first bar, which was generally lame. The highest among us left, leaving me, Bill, Joe, and my roommate Brian. Our self-confidence buoyed by drugs and alcohol, we decided to try to meet some chicks. It sounded like a good idea at the time, but that's what drugs and alcohol will do to you.

We left the first bar and went to another nearby. As soon as we entered, we saw three attractive but not necessarily unattainable girls sitting by the bar. Score!

To give you a better idea of the situation, allow me to list the dramatis personae:

- Bill Hansen, 26, former contestant on "Average Joe: Hawaii". Generously 5'6", generously 185 pounds, and generously 20 beers deep.
- Brian Powers, 26, "associate producer" (read: coffee boy). Was up at 4:30 in the morning for work and had been drinking since 4pm. Time when we entered the bar: 2:15am. Brian was barely breathing at this time.
- Joe Zadlo, 26, the handsomest of the group. Of course, just as it is with women, the best looking is always involved in the serious relationship, which was the case with Joe. And no, I'm not gay because I realize Joe is handsome. Leave me alone, ok?
- Jason Mulgrew, 25, one of the 50 most gorgeous men ever, alive or dead. Famous, fucking famous. And gorgeous. In his own mind.
I smoothly approached the bar to buy us drinks and also to eavesdrop on the girls' conversation. I thought maybe if I listened to their conversation, I could interject with some of the witty repartee that has made me America's Favorite Internet Quasi-Celebrity (notice the caps).

Hanging all over the girls was this extremely drunk, kind of sketchy British dude. It looked like an uncomfortable situation for the girls: this guy was hanging on the hottest one, and she was turning away from him, rolling her eyes, and trying to get him to buzz off. Eventually (and I mean eventually – he was there for a while), he got it and went away. And it was time for me to make these ladies' night.

Suavely, and more importantly, unthreateningly, I walked up to the ladies with an easy smile and said, "Man, that was brutal, huh?", referring to the guy who relentlessly hit on them.

Let's stop right there.

Now I wasn't expecting them to burst into laughter. Nor was I expecting them to start clawing each other's eyes out over who would be the first to give me a handjob for my comic relief. All I expected was some smiles and an opening, so I could come back with something like, "If you want, I'll go kick his ass. I did, like, three push-ups this morning, so I'm feeling pretty invincible right now."

Instead, the three girls looked at me, stared for a second or two, and then turned away.

Ouch baby, very ouch.

I slowly slinked away, much to the delight of my friends, who watched the approach, the attempt, and the horrible, horrible failure with great interest. To add insult to injury, the girls then got up and moved to another table in the bar. I think at this point Bill peed his pants a little bit because he was laughing so hard.

To be honest, I wasn't bothered by this. The delight it gave my friends far surpassed any hurt feelings I had, so it rolled right off me. But I think that I should re-think my approach. Instead of opening with a lame line, perhaps I should just be honest. Something like, "Listen, I'm not very good at this. But the good news is that I'm too drunk to have sex with you anyway. So I guess what I'm hoping for here is an hour or so of good conversation, followed by you and I going back to my apartment to slow dance to Bad English's 'When I See You Smile' before falling asleep. Then we'll wake up, go to the diner by my place, and have some eggs. Then sometime next week we'll get together again, I'll get you nice and drunk, and I will basically attack you with my sexual organs. Thoughts?"

You know what? I should print that line out and put it in my wallet now to use next weekend. Because otherwise I might forget and instead start with something like, "Did you ladies know that I won a silver medal in the National Latin Exam four years in a row from 1994 to 1997?" or "Do you girls want to see me drink a beer real fast then punch that bartender in the mouth?" Don't get me wrong - those lines are great, but perhaps their time has passed. Sigh.

Friday, July 15, 2005
 
berfday
On Sunday, I will be 26. 26 – damn! Dave Attell, the best stand-up comedian around, has a great bit in which he says something like, "I'm 38. I never thought I'd be doing stand-up comedy at 38. I thought I'd be in Hawaii solving murders with a half-Indian partner who drives a helicopter."

And that pretty much sums it up (well, not exactly, but bear with me). When I was a kid, 26 was old. Like, real old. My parents had me when they were 24 and 23, respectively. So naturally I assumed that when I was 26, I'd have at least one kid, possibly two. And I'd love them, as they wouldn't be blind or constantly lighting things on fire. I'd live with a beautiful wife who made the best chicken parmigiana in a house with a giant lawn and big, friendly dog. On weekends, we'd go to fancy dinners and take vacations to nice places. Yes sir, everything would be great at age 26.

Instead, at age 26 I don't have a wife, but I have a roommate who smokes pot constantly, owes me thousands of dollars, and one time punched me in the face in my sleep. I do love kids, but in the way that could get me in trouble. I live in a modest apartment above an Italian restaurant, spend a third of my income on alcohol and narcotics, and every night when I go to bed I'm so anxiety-ridden/hypochondriacal that I'm not sure I'll wake up again.

Such is life.

Further, I always thought I would be either a doctor or lawyer when I was younger. I didn't really know much about those profession, but I was a very cocky s.o.b. and knew that the smartest of the smartest became doctors and lawyers. I dropped the whole "doctor" thing in sophomore year of high school, when I learned that I, in fact, suck at science. Mr. Milewski was a great guy and all, but all that crap about plants and cells - no thanks. I spent most of that class in the bathroom, reading the Daily News, pooping, and wondering what it would be like to touch a booby. Maybe that's why I didn't so well, but it was a long time ago, so I don't really remember.

The lawyer idea stuck around a bit longer. For the first three years of college, I thought I was going to law school. Not because I was interested in law (I took a business law class my sophomore year and hated it; I spent the entire time staring at this gorgeous senior from Florida who I thought was perfect until she maced me after the midterm - twice), but because I didn't have much else to do. I think this is the reason why a lot of people go to law school. "Well, I don't really know what I want to do, and I don't mind being in school. I don't want a masters degree in something useless like history or math and I ain't going to med school, so I guess I'll go to law school."

That was my reasoning until one summer day after my junior year. I went, hungover, to the BC library to take my first practice LSAT. And I did so poorly that in three hours, the previous thirteen years of wanting to be a lawyer went right down the drain. I bombed the test and scrapped the law school plans forever. And now I'm an Internet Quasi-Celebrity, so at least it worked out. The moral: if you're not good at something, give up immediately and try something else. There is no shame in quitting. There is great shame and trying over and over again when you clearly suck.

[Actually, it wasn't until two years later that I learned that I didn't do as bad as I thought on that fateful first LSAT. Apparently, everyone (or mostly everyone) really bombs the test the first time the take it and my score was actually not that bad for my first time. However, since I'm a complete dick when it comes to things like this, I thought, "Well, if I don't get at least a 163 I'm never taking this test again." I'd say about 3% of people who take the test get a 163 or better on their first time. I didn't and immediately gave up. But again, I'm pretty much fucking famous, so it all worked out.]

And now here I am at 26, doing marketing/pr/financial research for a law firm. And in this department, I couldn't be happier. I like my job, I have good hours, and I make decent money. I see the irony here - that I wanted to be a lawyer but now I work for lawyers - but I don't mind. You all know by now that I don't have a lot of pride or shame, so as long as I get my rent paid on the first of the month, I'm cool. Besides, I work for partners. Partners are very different from associates: they've made it up the corporate ladder, are very successful, and are generally cool to deal with. Meanwhile, associates my age are putting in 90-hour weeks, giving their lives to the firm, ending relationships and friendships for a $100,000+ a year salary, and spending their free time scoping out the buildings of NYC, deciding which one to jump off of (for a good insight into this lifestyle, see here).

(Damn that was a long last sentence)

So at 26, I don't mind what I do. When I was a kid I didn't know jobs like this (the one I have now) existed. I only thought there were about twelve career choices: doctor, lawyer, cop, fireman, worker in a store, longshoreman, athlete, musician, actor, banker, person in jail. You'll notice "Practice Development Analyst/Internet Quasi-Celebrity" is not on that list. And that's ok, because at least it's better than being in jail. Mostly.

And so goodbye to 25 and hello to 26. 25 was a good year: fame, fortune, women, drugs (well, not those middle two - and not much of the first either). But now it's over and I must welcome 26 with open arms.

On Saturday, my friends and I will be having a little party to celebrate my b-day. No, you are not invited, mostly because I don't want you to see that I'm actually a fraud who in real life is in great shape, is devastatingly handsome, and doesn't drink. But you're also not invited because last year's party was a disaster. I don't want you showing up and having a bad time. But this time around I am cautiously optimistic. Of course, deep down I know it will suck. But fuck it - I'm going to get good and drunk. Stories (or complaining about lack of stories) to follow on Monday.

So have a good weekend and have a beer for me. I will have several hundred for you as I get officially get closer to 30 than I am to 20. Yikes.

[As a side note, thank you to all those who donated. I'm glad that you guys finally got it: a little bit to you means a lot to me, because when a lot of people give a little bit, it really helps me out. I just re-read that sentence and it doesn't make much sense, but you know what I mean. Even though my buddy John wrote to me and said:

Do you realize that you have effectively become a panhandler? What a disgrace. Why don't you just buy an accordion and sit on the L train?
Please keep the donations coming, because I am going to get so fucked up. Thank you again, and god bless.]

Thursday, July 14, 2005
 
complaints, construction, letter props, e-dating, porn, music
I promised myself that I wouldn’t complain about it until the end of the week, but I’ve never been very good with the whole "keeping promises" thing. Nor have I ever been very good with the whole "not committing hate crimes" thing, but that’s another story for another day.

You and I both know where this is going, so let’s just get there already: donations.

I don’t like asking for money. Seriously. I grew up poor and I know the value of a hard earned dollar. When I was a kid, I worked hard to earn money. It wasn’t easy to steal hackey-sacks from the hippy store on South Street, surreptitiously slipping them into the pouch of my 49ers Starter jacket while my friends distracted the store employees, to sell to our friends. Likewise, it was equally difficult to pound the pavement every day selling fireworks to younger kids, marking them up by 300% so that I could make a quick buck off a six year-old (god, junior year was my favorite year of college). So I’ll tell you first-hand that money must be earned.

That being said, I mean, fuck.

First, to those who have donated: thank you. I really appreciate it. I’m not sure how I can repay you, but I am thinking of having a dinner party at my apartment and I will surely invite you guys if I do. I should warn you that the dinner party will not be a very classy affair and would most likely end in my roommate Brian and I getting in a fist-fight. But the good news is that you all would be able to fit comfortably in my "cozy" Manhattan apartment, because there are so few of you.

I posted the "birthday/keep the site" going donation link on Monday. We started off pretty hot, having gotten a whopping five donations (two of which were from my parents, who decided to donate online rather than mail me a birthday card). Sweet! [sarcasm]

But I was undaunted; I assumed that many of you were digging in couch cushions, going to the bank, getting your proverbial house in order so that you might give me a pittance for my trouble over the past seventeen months. Sadly, this was only the case with three of you, which is how many people donated on Tuesday.

But if you know anything about me, you know that I believe in the inherent goodness in people. That, and one time I fucked a St. Bernard. But I believed, way deep down in my heart, past all the layers of nutella and mozzarella sticks and beat rags, that in the end you all would start giving. I confess that I was joking when I said I aimed for a 100% donation rate. I understood that that wasn’t possible. But I certainly hoped that we would improve on the 0.01% that gave last time.

Yesterday, one person donated.

[sigh]

Friends, friends, friends. I don’t even know what to do anymore. When I first started writing this, I thought it’d come out angry. You know, "You assholes! (Almost) every day for a year and a half, and seven fucking people donate! 300,000 words of entertaining you every day at work and you can’t give me a fucking dollar!" But I don’t have the energy.

Then I thought it might come out sad. You know, "Why do you guys do this to me? All I do for you and this is what I get in return? I’m asking for five bucks to help me out for helping you get through work and you don’t give a damn? After all this time?" But I still have a little pride.

Instead, I’m just resigned. Yeah, I’d like more than seven people to give, but fuck it. You guys suck. I hope you realize:

- If all of you gave $5 (or even if most of you gave $5), the price of a Big Mac meal, I could quit my job today and do this full-time.

That is not a joke in the least. For the price of a fucking sandwich, you could give me the gift of early retirement. I could spend my days exploring NYC, meeting new people, sleeping in, and most importantly, destroying my body with drugs and alcohol. And you’d have a front row seat. But instead, seven fucking people gave me something. Fuck and fuck again.

So this is my last plea. Remember, it’s my birthday and the site costs several hundred dollars a year to run. Even a dollar helps (though if you give $1, Paypal keeps 1/3 of it). So give if you can. But I have to think of something here; one million hits a month and still several hundred bucks in the hole for this. I am an awesome businessman.

So please donate.

Now let’s just move on before we start saying things we don’t mean.

*********************************************

Outside my apartment, there are two shells of buildings with construction equipment all around (forklifts, orange tape, portapotties, the works). I remember when I first moved in I was very concerned about this. I thought there was going to be construction going on at all hours, keeping me up at night and waking me up in the morning.

This never happened. I was never bothered by it, because there was no construction going on. As far as I could tell, the only purpose of the mess was to clog the already WAY overcrowded streets. The forklifts sat there collecting dust and the portapotties went unpooed in. It was kinda sad.

Well, it's not sad anymore. This morning, not one but TWO jackhammers started pounding away at 7:15am. 7:15! What the fuck is that all about! Isn't there some kind of time restriction about when loud-ass construction can start in residential areas? The problem is that I don't wake up until 8:06, so for almost an hour I sat there cursing, falling in and out of sleep, shifting my tiny erect penis around, thinking, "This weekend, I'm getting a prostitute. I just have to. It's my birthday and enough is enough. I was in People fucking magazine for Christ's sake."

And it was really, really loud. Much like the motorcycles I wrote about a few weeks ago, the windows were shaking and I was worried that my air conditioner was going to drop right out of the fucking window. But the true indicator of how loud it was is that when my alarm went off at 8:06, I didn't hear it. I was in and out of sleep and I didn't hear it until 8:11, when the jackhammers momentarily stopped. I didn't hear any alarm going off that was six inches away from my face because of jackhammers blasting away outside my apartment. Now that is loud.

So I apologize in advance if I'm in an ornery mood over the next few days (weeks? months?) because of lack of sleep. I don't know if they ran out of funds or the workers were on strike before, but it's on now. And it's only a matter of time before someone gets hurt. Most likely me, for trying to confront a construction worker at 7:30 in the morning and getting hit with a wrench.

(No idea why this font is huge. Just roll with it.)

*********************************************

In this week’s issue of People, dated June 18 (“Angelina adopts a baby girl!”), there is the most wonderful letter in all the world:

Thumbs up for choosing Jason Mulgrew as “Bachelor Blogger”. I’ve been reading his blog for months and find him to be a great writer with an awesome sense of humor. I’m happy he’s getting some recognition for his efforts.
The best part? I didn’t write it! Not only that, but I don’t know the person that wrote it! Fucking sweet!

Lauren Van Pelt of Clovis, California, if you’re reading this, thank you and god bless you. I definitely owe you a beer if you ever make it to NYC.

And to People, I promise this is the last time I use your copyrighted material on my site. Probably.

*********************************************

If I ever started a dating site, like eharmony.com or match.com, I’d call it www.settling.com.

I mean, isn’t that really what you’re doing? Saying, "You know what? Fuck it. This being single thing is too hard, so I’m gonna go on the internet to meet some other nerds. I just don’t have the energy for this whole 'face to face' meeting thing."

Hey, don’t get me wrong. I’m sure people find true love from these sites. At the very least, I’m sure a lot of people get together and have sex (lord knows I’ve met up with a lot of you all and had some really strange and forgettable sexual escapades). But I haven’t been able to take the plunge with these sites. I don’t know...maybe it’s because I’m old-fashioned. I think a first kiss shouldn’t be arranged over the internet, but instead should happen the natural way: like in a bar, or a bar bathroom, or in the parking lot of a bar.

You know what? I’m gonna stop here. I just realized that a lot of you reading this are probably involved in these sites and I get enough hate mail as it is, what with all the "you are homophobic" and "you should invite Jesus into your life" (seriously) emails. I don’t need 'smore from people defending internet dating. Whatever works for you, work it. Because I ain’t got much working for me in that department (have I mentioned that I have trouble meeting women?)

(And besides, the joke doesn't have legs anyway. I just thought it'd be cool to start a dating site and name is www.settling.com. Maybe I should think more about this...)

*********************************************

Speaking of women, I realized last night while on my computer that I haven’t downloaded any new porn in over a month, since June 12.

Forget the constant chest pains, the stress, the lightheadedness and the general malaise: this, more than anything, is the strongest sign that I am indeed dying.

At the very least, I had a good run. Remember me as an internet pioneer, an egotist, a terrible lover and an even worse father. Thank you and god bless.

*********************************************

Six Songs:

"Burn In My Skin" Ray Lamontagne
I've pimped Ray about a million times on this site, but I'm recommending this song now as it's the lead song on my new "Sad As Fuck" playlist. If you don't collapse in sadness after he sings, "So kiss him again/Just to prove to me that you can", then you have no feeling and should be beaten with lamps and other living room objects. The last time I saw Ray live three people actually died from heartache after hearing him do this song. Of course, that is a lie, but I hope that you understand that what I'm trying to say is that this song is sad.

"Minneapolis" That Dog
I don't know anything about this band and you probably don't either. But I like their stuff. This is a song about a girl who develops a crush about a guy in a band who comes through her hometown of Minneapolis. So I can totally relate to it.

"High and Dry" Jaime Cullum
Recommended to me by a reader a while ago (we're talking probably six months ago), this is a smooth, jazzy cover of the Radiohead song. I kinda want to listen to it in the rain. Not standing the rain, but sitting and watching the rain. But that's just me.

"New Amsterdam" Elvis Costello
Everyone should listen to Elvis Costello. This is a good start. If you like this, we can get into so more stuff, but let's take it slowly.

"Tough Love" Squeeze
Like Elvis Costello, everyone should listen to Squeeze. This is a sad little ditty. Again, if you like this, we can move forward.

"Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You" Bob Dylan
(Please note that when discussing this song I'm speaking about the live version from the accessible "Rolling Thunder Review", not the studio version recorded when Dylan was in his nasal phase. There is a HUGE difference and the live version is much, much better.)
This is one of the most kick-ass songs of all time. Just because it's just so cocky, because it's not a question, it's a command: tonight I'll be staying here with you. I wish I had the balls to say something like that to a woman. Instead, I'll just stand in the corner with my friends, drinking Guinness and talking about fantasy baseball. Oh well.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005
 
vacation recap

[This is a long one. Consider yourselves warned. I was going to cut it in two to make it more palatable, but fuck it. It's done, so here you go.]

Whenever I take time off from posting, I find it hard to get back in the groove. This is especially true when many things happened during the time off. To write "On Friday...", "On Saturday...", "On Sunday..." etc is one of the greatest sins a writer can commit. Thank god I’m not a writer.

So I started writing a post in the "On ______" style mentioned above but I scrapped it because when reading it over even I got bored. That’s not a good sign, since reading anything that I write usually arouses me to the point of climax. Seriously. I don’t even need to touch myself – the warmth from the laptop on my crotch is enough to initiate the rise, work toward the celebration, and comfort after the fall. It’s actually quite beautiful, but we’re getting off topic here.

The following is a list of eleven things I learned or re-learned about myself, my life, my friends, and the shore while being on vacation.

[To clear this up, here’s the itinerary: I left NYC Thursday night, June 30. I was in my hometown of Philly from Thursday night until Sunday afternoon (July 3). Then I went "down the shore" to North Wildwood, NJ until Sunday, July 10, when I returned to NYC. So there.]

TV is easy. I wrote last Thursday that I was going to do a small guest spot on the show 10!, which is the local extension of the Today Show in Philadelphia. I mentioned that I was nervous, because I wasn’t given the questions in advance. I was also nervous because I wasn’t sure how well my sense of "humor" would go over with 10!’s demographic audience: housewives. To be fair, I am sure there are many cool housewives out there, but I don’t personally know any, so I am only assuming that they wouldn’t necessarily appreciate jokes about getting in fights with dogs and masturbating in parked cars.

But overall, it was very easy. It was almost too easy. I thought I was going to be on at 10:20, so I was told to show up at 9:30 (the show runs on NBC channel 10 from 10am to 11am). I showed up, with my dad acting as my personal assistant for the day (dad’s tasks: smoke cigarettes, drink coffee, sweat). I met with the hosts and they were very pleasant – pretty much what you would expect of daytime TV hosts. As I was talking to them before the show, I thought, "These are such nice people. They probably go home at night to their nice houses, drink good wine with their spouses, and help their kids with their homework. Meanwhile, I’m going to get drunk tonight, take my dad’s truck, and go looking for hookers around 12th & Locust. That is, after I drunk drive to the diner and get French onion soup and a turkey club, of course."

[Editor’s Note: do not drink and drive. And stay in school. Thank you.]

At 9:55, just as they were about to go live, a make-up woman came over and started caking on some powder on the giant zit that had taken residence on my face just about my eyebrow. When I was done, a producer came over and sat me next to the hosts – I was opening the show. Thanks for the heads up, guys.

And that was pretty much it. We shot the shit for a while, went to a commercial, and I left. Simple. I watched the tape of the show afterward and vowed to never watch it again. For some reason, my voice, which was never quite "manly" to begin with, went up a couple of notches on the "I sound like a goddamn homosexual" scale (not that there is anything wrong with homosexuals; I was briefly gay for a time in 1997, so it’s cool).

But that was it. Done and done. If I ever get on TV again, I will know not be as nervous. As a matter of fact, as long as I have access to painkillers, I will never be nervous again. Joy.

Fighting is stupid, but pretty awesome. Growing up in an urban neighborhood (or as I yell when I’m drunk, "in the streets"), most of my friends' favorite pastimes were:

1) Basketball
2) Girls
3) Fighting

Actually, fighting is probably second, but you get it: people fought constantly when we were kids. And when I say "when we were kids" I mean "from about age 6 until, um, now."

I never got into the whole fighting thing. It’s strange...I’ll be the first to admit that I’m pretty much a pussy, but for some reason, it was almost like I had a special exemption from fighting. I don’t know if it was because I was smart, funny, or ostensibly homosexual. Probably a mix of all three.

But guys fight each other a lot in my neighborhood. They still do. And not only that, but they talk about fighting a lot, too. I felt like I was watching "Friday Night Fights" when we were at the bar and I heard:

Ted: "I’m telling you, Charlie is good with his hands, but if Rob lands that big right of his, it’s all over."
Jack: "Are you kidding me? Sure, Rob does have a big right, but there’s no way he could touch Charlie – he’s just too quick."
Mike: "You know who would be a good fight? Charlie and Freddy. They’re both about the same size and both very quick, and it’d be interesting to see how the righty Charlie matches up with the southpaw Freddy."
Jack: "Oh, that would be a good one."
Ted: "Yeah, I’d like to see that."
Keep in mind that the people being discussed are not professional or even amateur boxers. They are an electrician, a guy who works at the local gas station, and a bartender. I mean, sheesh. I wonder what they would say about me:

Ted: "I think Mulgrew’s biggest asset is his teeth. He’s got some sharp ass fucking teeth and he’s not afraid to use them."
Jack: "Another of his strengths is his ability to cry on cue. When confronted, he starts crying and that kinda freaks the other guy out, ending the conflict."
Mike: "God, he’s such a pussy. Did you hear one time in grade school he stuck a piece of chalk up his ass on a dare?"Ted: "Yeah, I was there. It was awesome."

And wouldn’t you know it, not two hours after hearing this conversation (the first, not the second), a bar fight involving one of my buddies broke out. The reasons, which I can’t get into for legal reasons (seriously), were stupid, but I found myself, with about ten other guys, pulling two people apart in the middle of a bar on a Friday night. And I admit, it was pretty fucking awesome.

The best part was how well the neighborhood girls take it when their boyfriends fight. If a fight broke out involving my Manhattan friends, I am pretty sure that these guy’s girlfriends would have to be institutionalized for a period of two weeks to two months in order to calm down. Take a nice sheltered girl from Connecticut or North Jersey and put her and her man in the middle of a South Philly bar fight and she might never recover.

But the girls in the neighborhood didn’t bat an eye. They were all dancing when it broke out, and stopped to check it out when the music was shut off (keep in mind, these girlfriends could see their boyfriends rolling around the floor holding people back from murdering each other and jawing with the opposing side in the conflict). They sort of watched and after it was broken up, went right back to dancing. It was as if someone had come in with a mohawk: they turned, looked, and went back to what they were doing.

The girlfriend of one of the guys involved came up to me immediately after it was broken up:

Girlfriend: "Jase, I just want to know one thing: was Jack wrong?"
Me: [lying] "Um, not really."
Girlfriend: "That’s all I need to know."

And she went right back to dancing.

I’ll tell you, it’s always eventful when I go home. God I miss Philly sometimes.

My first heart attack was a mild one. The next night after the fight, I didn’t go out. I was so hungover I could barely breathe or wipe my ass, so I didn’t think it’d be appropriate to introduce four gallons of Bud Light into my bloodstream.

I stayed at my dad’s house, in part because my dad was dogsitting my aunt’s dog, a very cool beagle named Lucky. I spent the majority of my day laying around and eating, as the poison seeped out of my body. It was a bad day.

The only activity that I took part in was playing with the dog. This usually occurred while I was either lying or sitting: dog jumps on chair, I throw him off, I lean over and throw him around some more, I get tired, I stop, I nap, repeat.

At about 10pm, I guess I got my second wind and I jumped out of the chair to chase the dog around the house. After about five seconds, I regretted the decision immensely.

As it usually does when I do something besides move my eyelids, my heart started racing. I’m fat and out of shape, so I’m used to this. But this time it was different. Usually it goes: boom-boom...boom-boom...boom-boom very quickly. But this time, there was no one-two beat. It was more like boom-boom-boom...boom...boom...boom-boom-boom-boom...boom, etc. And it freaked me the fuck out.

I have mentioned before that I am a hypochondriac. At one time or another, I’ve believed that I have had every disease, even made-up ones, like shilomyosis, which is a condition in which the left leg twitches every time you pee, or fragolitis, who symptoms include heartburn, lightheadedness, and a desire for juicy fried chicken.

But this time, I was really freaking out and walked over my dad, telling him to feel my heartbeat. Now, the worst thing that anyone can do to/for a hypochondriac is to validate his/her hypochondria. What I need to hear when I think I have stomach cancer or am suffering an embolism is, "Dude, you are a fucking moron. Nothing is wrong with you. Also, you’ve had mayo on your face since the barbeque and that was like twelve hours ago. God you’re fucking disgusting."

My dad is probably the least hypochondriacal person in the world (when he was 19, he got drunk down the shore, dove head-first into 18 inches of water in the bay, broke his neck, went to bed, woke up with a hangover and drove 90 miles to Philly before saying, "Mom, I think I broke my neck" – sure enough he did and now has three ounces of platinum in his spine holding his neck vertebra together, but more on that some other time). But when he felt my racing heart, startled, he said, "Wow – you better go lie down or something." Wrong answer. Then he added, "Do you want me to run you up the hospital?" Even more wrong. Before you could say "Go back to therapy", I was in the bathroom sucking down Bayer and Xanax, trying to calm down.

Eventually, I did. But it took a long time, and a lot of medication. And seriously, this time was different. Again, I am a tremendous hypochondriac, much more so than I let on here. I can say that I am almost consumed with the beating of my own heart. I obsess about it constantly. I reach for my chest to feel my heart beat (and my man boobs) about two thousand times a day. At times, it’s so out of control that it’s almost paralyzing.

And this particular freak-out scared the fuck out of me. So much so that I’m officially starting a diet. Yesterday, after eating cereal, a salad, and a 6" subway sub all day, I actually walked home from work. So you can see that this time, I am serious. That is, until my birthday, when I drink a bottle of vodka and eat a block of cheese and at least two bottles of ranch dressing. Sure, that might a little stressful on the old ticker, but fuck it – it’s my birthday.

Bill got a haircut in a driveway. Strangest incident from vacation: by buddy Bill getting a haircut in someone's driveway at 5am on Monday night/Tuesday morning. Don't ask, because I'm not sure how it happened. I guess it was the natural result of having a half dozen people together, three of whom are professional hairstylists and one of whom is an accountant with bad hair, and a ton of beer. And I'll tell you: for a haircut given in the dark by a girl who had a bazillion beers over the previous six hours, it looks pretty good.

Overeating is underrated. Except for the whole heart attack thing side effect, it really is. I ate and overate more in this past week that I have in a long time. And it was very, very good.

(Again, except for the whole "constantly thinking I was dying" thing)

Napping is underrated. My schedule went like this pretty much everyday:

11am: Wake up
Noon: Eat a lot
1pm to 4pm: Sit by pool/walk around
4pm to 6:30: Nap
7pm: Eat a lot
8pm to 2am: Drink

I was getting about 13 hours a sleep a day, taking the most gorgeous late-afternoon naps the world has ever seen. And my quality of life was about 1000x better. I highly, highly recommend the nap.

(I know there was nothing funny there; it was a statement of fact: naps are great. Thank you.)

Women – good god. I think I’ve run out of things to say about beautiful women, having exhausted my store of superlatives sometime last December. But after this recent trip to the shore, I need only four words to get my point across: HOT TAN YOUNG GIRLS.

Hot tan young girls are ALL OVER the shore (sorry about the caps – I’ll stop now). I mean, EVERYWHERE (sorry). I’m kinda having trouble writing about this and I don’t know where to start, so I’m going to step away from the computer for a couple of minutes, take a few deep breaths and a walk around the block, and go commit a sex crime. Be back in ten.

...

...

...

...

Wow – that got out of control pretty quickly. I fucking hate dogs. Anyway...

Maybe I sound like an old fuddy-duddy, but I don’t remember girls looking like this when I was 18. Of course, I was very into pills at that time, but this is beside the point. On one afternoon, I was walking along the beach and came upon a gaggle of girls that looked like some of the hottest twenty-two year olds I’d seen in a long time. Upon closer inspection, they were probably seventeen, if that. I think it was the braces and "Wissahickon High Cheerleading" t-shirts that gave them away. Because otherwise, they looked 22. And trust me, I was looking for a long time, so I know what I’m talking about.

And this says nothing about the bar scene, which is filled with sexpot underage girls who, shockingly, want nothing to do with me. If I had to make a quick list of things that girls in bars down the shore are attracted to, I’d say:

- Shirts without sleeves
- Tattoos
- Loads and loads of hair gel
- Frequent use of curse words
- STD’s (if you have an STD and a child, you’re on par with Leonardo DiCaprio)
- General doochebaggery

Unfortunately, the top selling points about yours truly go something like:

- Reads books when not required
- Decent job
- Nice place that parents do not also live in
- Frequent use of curse words
- Good general knowledge (i.e. knows that Europe is a continent, not a country; can explain how Caesar isn’t famous just for his salad; etc)
- No STD’s (though not for lack of trying)

Also, I’m pretty much fucking famous. Yet this (the fame and my other qualifications) means less than nothing to women at bars down the shore. One night, I watched some musclehead douchebag in a Lakers jersey down to his knees, a white hat cocked to the side, and a necklace that would give Flavor Flav pause grind on two gorgeous girls. We’re talking girls so hot that when you see them you involuntarily say "My god" out loud because you can’t control yourself. I was standing with some friends taking it in and after a few minutes I asked my buddy:

Me: "Dude, who is that guy?"
Him: "That’s Hook. He just got out of jail for dealing. I think he like beat up his girlfriend too. He’s a real dick."

At which point my female friend chimed in, "Yeah, but he’s hot."

...

I don’t even know why I get out of bed anymore.

I will say this: I was so drunk by the time I left the bar that after hours of watching scenes like this I was motivated beyond belief. I swore I was going to go home to write the greatest screenplay Hollywood has ever seen and would immediately go on a strict diet. Of course, about thirty minutes later I ate a pound of macaroni salad, but for those five minutes I was very serious. Nothing like watching some shitdude ex-con scoring with some hot chicks to get you all sorted out. For five minutes. Or whenever the booze wears off. Whichever comes first.

Seagulls are the worst creatures on earth. In London's Trafalgar Square, they had a pigeon problem. See, the pigeons in London are not like pigeons in the US: they have balls. While all it takes to scatter a group of pigeons in NYC is a step in their direction, the London pigeons will come up to you, go after your food, and will continue going after your food even after you've shooed them away.

So what did London do to combat this problem? The put two hawks in Trafalgar Square to chase the pigeons away. I'm not sure if they just chase the pigeons or eat them, the latter being pretty fucking awesome, but it works. The result? Less pigeons.

The seagulls down the shore deserve such treatment. They are probably the most despicable creatures on earth. One day I aimlessly wondered the boardwalk on Wildwood, eating fries and taking in the scenery (i.e. poor people, bad tattoos, lots and lots of Philly/South Jersey accents). And wherever I went you could see hoards of seagulls attacking people trying to eat french fries, swarming over them, acting viciously.

Fortunately, they didn't fuck with me. I'm assuming they took one look and thought, "Whoa - stay away from that fucking guy. Sure, we might get a fry or two, but he looks pretty serious about his food and I think he'd take at least a few of us out. Let's move on."

So Wildwood NJ, please invest in hawks to chase or attack these bastard seagulls. Because that would be fucking awesome.

A lot of TV shows suck. I watched a lot of TV over vacation, and some notes on two shows in particular:

"Blue Collar TV" should be renamed "Southern Moron TV". Good god. Don't get me wrong - some of it was funny (very funny actually), but man, for most of it I was sitting there watching, shaking my head with my mouth open, saying, "I just don’t get it."

"The Carlos Mencia Show" should be renamed "Lame Jokes About Muslims and Hispanics For 30 Minutes". I love it when minority comedians get up and talk about being a minority. It doesn’t get any funnier than that. We get it – you’re Mexican. You illegally crossed the border and you have a lot of brothers and sisters. Also, you love tacos. What’s that Mr. African-American? You like rims and big butts? You don’t say! Hey, do the police target you unfairly by any chance? You’re kidding! That is hilarious! Excuse Mr. Asian Man, but are you a bad driver? Did your parents stress the value of hard work and education? Do a lot of people believe you know karate? Please share all of your experiences! I can’t get enough!
(Yes, I’m being sarcastic. And yes, I realize that I talk about being fat all the time, but screw you.)

Drink until you shit – literally. Much to my surprise, the "Drink Until You Shit Tour" was a huge success. We came, we saw, we drank, and a few of us shit (myself included).

It started at 7pm and ended, um, I have no idea when. I do know a few things:

1) I pooped – twice – at the same bar. Score!

2) We had a few extra t-shirts, maybe 8 or so, so we brought them out in a backpack in case people joined the tour late. The t-shirts didn’t go to late-comers, but rather strangers in the bars and on the streets who saw the shirts and loved them. We sold all of them. I guess our "Drink Until You Shit!" motto was catchy.

3) Best one-liner of the tour: at the first bar we were drinking at, some old dude came up to us to ask what we were doing. My buddy David said, "We’re on a drinking tour – you wanna come?" The old dude said, "No...I’d win."

(I guess you had to be there, but it was pretty funny)

4) David and I told everyone that the first person to shit him/herself would get a $100. We thought everyone knew we were joking, but at about 3am, my friend Bucky actually pooped in his pants. I was gone and/or blacked out by this point, but there are several witnesses to verify this and the next day I got two voicemails from Bucky asking for his $100.

So maybe instead of donating money to me, you can give me some money to give Bucky. Any guys who shits himself deserves $100, in my humble opinion.

5) Um, I got nothing. I was pretty much toast by about midnight. One of those nights were you say to your friends:

Me: "Dude, it was fucking awesome."
Friend: "What did you guys do?"Me: "Um, I don’t know. Just kinda drank a lot for like nine hours."
Friend: [clearly disappointed] "Oh. Sweet."

6) I’ll tell you what was disappointing: my enormous hangover on Sunday, which was made worse by a drive back to Philly, followed by a train back to NYC. Nothing like traveling through traffic and tons of people with three large bags when you’re convinced parts of you are dying.

The good news is that since it was so successful this will not be the last of the drinking tours. If you play your cards right, maybe you guys will even get invited. But I’ll probably be dead within a week, so don’t get your hopes up.

I missed NYC. It's official: I have become a New York douchebag. You know, the kind of person who compares every city to NYC, who talks about living in NYC too much, who says how much he loves living in NYC. I can't help it, I just do. I make no apologies for the fact that I live in the bestest city in the world and I love it. Screw you for judging me.

I'll spare you the details, but it was just so nice to be home to familiar places I know: Rosario's pizza, KGB liquors, Taco Bell, etc. I like North Wildwood, but there's not a whole heck of a lot to do there. I figured that there were about the same number of shops/stores in the four-block radius surrounding Penn Station than there are in all of the Wildwoods. And for someone as shallow and materialistic as me, this is important.

Having said that, my love for the city doesn't make being back at work any easier. Good lord. If I said it once, I'll say it again: working is for chumps. Sheesh - no thanks.

And now if you'll excuse me, it's about time for my nap. Have a good day.



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