Thanks to a commercial, I have just been let in on a little secret: Mexico is apparently "Closer Than Ever."

Does that make anyone else more than a little nervous? Do they know something about continental drift that we don't?

Makes you want to pull out your Country Detector. "Mexico, 400 yards and closing...300 yards...200 yards...100...Holy God, it's in the walls! It's in the WALLS!" And I half-expect to look outside the window and see the province of Oaxaca crouched in the bushes, watching me with binoculars.

Oaxaca, I told you, it's OVER. Terminado. I want to see other Mexican provinces, assuming they, too, are closer than ever.
Outsmarting The World: Everytime there are no cars parked outside your house, assume someone is throwing you a surprise party.


You want to know about procrastination? Let me tell you about procrastination.

Procrastination is about when you know at the beginning of the semester you know you're going to have to write a whole mainstage play before the end of the semester, and you write a little here, write a little there, write enough to send some to NYU with your application, but really what you have amounts to nothing but a glorified introduction and you have to have a rough draft by Monday so the person who's going to edit it can before you turn it in, and you don't really work on it, you keep expecting it to just HAPPEN.

The sad fucking thing of it is, it will.

Here's dat poem. Truth be told, I wasn't incredibly proud of it, but you just don't argue with The Ladies.

She turns and

(Oh no let's not start this again
we've been here before
have you learned anything?)

she looks and

(You know, in every greeting
there's a goodbye
a beginning guarantees an end)

she says hello and

(better to avoid the beginning altogether
avert your eyes
this will end badly for all of you
and the only way not to stop something
is never to bring it into being at all
so hedge your bets
turn your back
and walk away)

she smiles and

(what was I saying again?)


Do you think, somewhere in the world, there's a cigar store called Wholly Smokes?

Because if there's not, I'm going to start it. Mark my words. Right next to my detective-themed diner, Malterior Motives.


Tonight, I feel like I could swing the world by its tail and toss it into the next county.

"I loved your poem," she said. "LOVED it."

You weren't supposed to read it yet, I said, you cheated.

"I know. But it's really good. I sympathize."

I'm glad you liked it, I said.

Even though our writing groups got interrupted, I'll let you bend the rules. Just this once.

Then after class, going down the hallway, her friend said, "I really liked your poem."

Oh, Mary let you read it too?

"Mm-hm. I really liked it."

She's such a cheater.

"It'll be even better. When you read it, read it slow. With your voice it will sound so good."

I'd bet it would sound even better if I whispered it, I didn't say.

I hightailed it to the parking lot to grab a shirt, made it to seventh hour, changed into the shirt, performed, with the rest of my group, a Reader's Theatre piece that knocked 'em dead (Chelsea M. is my favorite old Jewish lady, ever) then went to Cheba Hut 'cause it was a half day, gobbled 12 inches of pastrami and pepperocinis on white, got dropped off at school, banged out an article and a maze for the newspaper, came home, worked on the play which is due in rough draft form next Monday and is nowhere close to ready, fell in love with my family like I do every night, ate spaghetti, picked up my little brothers from RE, rocked Fourbanger in the car, wrote more, filled up my gas tank almost halfway, went to the gym, came back, wrote more.

Orson Welles used to be rehearsing a play on one end of NYC and doing a radio show on the other end, so he bought an ambulance, siren and all, to get him from one place to the other on the quick. There was no law against it. That sounds about right.

Now my arms are sore but I'm still wondering how far I could throw the world after I wind up a couple times.

Oh, and did I mention I'm going on the Theatre Co. trip to London over Spring Break because I have, God's honest, the coolest parents in the history of parents?

Into the next county. At least.

Mark Steyn is the fucking bomb


They always used to giggle, I know a secret and you don't.

Who am I kidding, "They used to." They DO.

Is it just me, or do girls seem to relish their secrets? I always thought the purpose of keeping something secret was to keep anyone from knowing about it. And part of that subterfuge would logically be not to let anyone know you know something they're not being allowed to. Because when we know information is being actively kept from us, it instantly becomes the most important bit of knowledge out there, way past our social security number or our blood type.

So when I have something I'm not supposed to talk about, I don't. Call me nutty.

Then again, myself and giggling girls are working at cross purposes. She doesn't want to have a secret so she can keep it close. She wants a secret so she can let everyone know, with glances or rumor or whatever her weapon is this week, that she has it, that she's privileged with this devastating tidbit. Maybe she pokes one of her friends and smile as if to say, "Now this is a perfect example of what we discuss in hushed tones in our Secret Girl Meetings." We are all supposed to be endlessly intrigued.

And the shitty thing is, sometimes we are.

Our lives are one part pantomime act and one part confessional. We are always saving up things to spill. Can't we just be fucking honest with everyone?

Of course not. No babies would ever get made.

Hey, you know what? You know that key next to "delete" and under "home," that says "end?" When you press that, it takes you to the end of a line automatically. I just discovered that. I was always afraid of touching it, for fear that the would universe collapse in on itself.

Maybe if I hit it twice.

Madpony makes everyone else's blog look like a kindergarten macaroni picture


You know what you can get me for Christmas? A Sweeping-Controversial-StatementBot. I know you've seen them in store windows, and being so Controversial, they're pretty cheap. One of those sweet chrome babies would really spice up my posts now and then.

I'd be starved for a topic that would rile the masses, and I could just press his head and he'd say, "The Holocaust never happened." Thanks, SCSbot. Away I would type.

How'm I gonna follow that up?
"The poor should be sterilized by the government so they can't spread their smelly hobo genes."

Wow, SCSBot, is there anything you WON'T say?

"Your wife has gotten much fatter."

I guess not! Although I don't have a wife...or does that make it even more sweeping and controversial?

It'll be the best Christmas ever. Promise.

Other Robots and Mechanical Men I Would Like For Christmas, In No Particular Order:

TellsYouPleasingLiesAboutYourPopularityAndAppearancebot, 2003 Edition
Reggie, The Pickpocketing Robot Nogoodnik (preferably the model that smokes and dances)

Only 22 shopping days left.

Speaking of robots...
If someone says to you, No one could POSSIBLY decide to apply to UCLA at dinner one night and then do the lengthy application, personal statement included, from scratch all the next day because that day just happens to be the deadline, you tell 'em, I know this guy DC who did it.

And he's a H-O-T-T-I-E.

You tell 'em that.


Let's just say my blog output has been, uhm, lame, as of late. Yes, let's just say that.

A Christmas tree just showed up in my living room. I had no part in putting it together (it's artificial) or decorating it, so it feels like a bastard child, one I didn't have anything to do with. "Oh, it's you," I say to it. And all it says is, blink blink.

I'll try not to turn this into an allegory of lost innocence and losing the Christmas spirit, because I hate that. Coming home on Thanksgiving the radio DJ was soliciting calls about Thanksgiving miracles. A woman called in and told the story of how, when she was little, her and her 10 brothers and sisters were going to have to eat dried beans for Thanksgiving because they family had fallen on hard times. But they didn't mind, she said, because they had each other.

"And don't you wish it was still like that?" said the raspy-voiced DJ woman. Because the unspoken assumption we operate under, as a culture, is that material things destroy our souls, even if they, you know, feed us, and that poverty makes us nicer.

"Well...no," said the woman, because she has common sense. Because now she can probably feed her family AND enjoy their company, psychobabble aside, the two are not mutually exclusive. Anyway, a box showed up at their doorstep full of non-perishables, and they never found out from who. The woman makes it her goal to do something similar to someone in need every Thanksgiving. Nice enough.

"Oh," said the DJ, "you pay it forward."

Oh shut up you babbling meaningless-cultural-nugget-regurgitating myth-of-poverty-perpetuating automaton, I wanted to say and get back to playing "Holly Jolly Christmas."

And soon enough, she did. But what do I know. We were driving in an SUV at the time, so we're part of the problem, not the solution.

I went to two concerts this weekend. Fourbanger owns your ass, although they may still be processing the paperwork.

If the grocery store is anything, it's a good place to spot good names for pimps. Vienna Fingers and Junior Fiesta, makin' life miserable for all the hos in your postal district.

Never put anything off, or you might miss out on five thousand dollars for college, like I might have. More on that later. Or never. We'll see how it works out.