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Strove to find a way to punch people in the face by using the Internet.

3/26/2004

NEW WEB SITE

Check it out: Bad News Reviews.

3/20/2004

DIARY OF INDIGNITIES TRIUMPHS
Your Fishing Report for Saturday, March 20.
This morning was the first this year warm enough for me to fish. I know this is the Diary of Indignities and not the Diary of Triumphs, but today I'm all a-flush with the glow of hard-won battle (kind of like Conan) and feel like bragging a little.


The path to fishing lies fraught with danger and flecked with adventure. Who knows what lies ahead? Maybe God.


It's quiet today... A little too quiet, if you ask me...


...AAARGH! And now I know why! The first cast brings up a poisonous Green Dragon fish, one of the most deadly creatures ever to swim the seven seas. Here you can see it bare its awful fangs as it tries to spray me with an incapacitating venom.


Here's a shot of my gear. I stride into battle wearing a utility belt that includes dozens of complex gadgets and items designed to meet whatever challenges may befall me, much like Batman. Only without the mask, cape, years of honing my combat skills, fat inheritance, night time, crime fighting, cool car, butler, fancy spotlight, secret cave or curious relationship with a much younger man.


Action strikes! It's Orca, the killer whale! Or, as many salty old sea dogs call him, "the great white shark of the sea."


Today is a good day to die.


And again, action! Another brutal battle. But it's all worth it, for the tribe will feast on my efforts for many moons.


Shrimpy? Shrimpy, are you OK? ...Shrimpy? No... No! Oh God, Shrimpy! What have they done to you?! Where's your head, Shrimpy?! Your fucking head! No! Noooooooo!


Here you can see me molesting a crab. Fear me, crab, for I am your lord and master! Ah hah hah hah hah haaaaah! ...Hmmm, "lord of the crabs." Wasn't that an Aerosmith song?


The bleached skeleton of a friendly dolphin, likely picked clean by a school of voracious pirhana. Nobody likes to see this kind of shit, but you gotta accept it — it's the law of the jungle. Or, uh, the ocean. Whatever.


Skill and patience are rewarded, as I catch a toothsome Frozen Hot Pocket fish. One of nature's tastiest animals, to be sure.


Here I peel back the creature's thorny carapace, the better to get at the delicious morsels of flesh inside.


This bird came up and was like, "Hey man, check it out, I got what you need." More than a little suspicious, I asked, "What are you talking about, crazy bird?" He replied, "Smack, man. Horse. White lady! Just a little pinch of sweet powdered sugar and all your cares and worries drift away in snowy dreams, baby!" Uh oh — I knew what this was all about. Drugs! "Get away, bird!" I yelled. "I don't need your crummy smack to have a good time! I can have fun in life without crutches, just by believing in myself!" Then I ran and told the nearest authority figure, in this case beloved TV anchorman Walter Cronkite.


Deploying my robot arm during a fight with a dangerous Albanian Fuckfish.


This was novel — a rare encounter with the mythical Kraken, a fearsome sea-beast responsible for turning many a sailor's wife into a poor, wretched widow.


The battle with this obscene monster rages. I hoot my chilling war cry while grasping the fiend's mighty jaws.


Can you taste the victory? I can.

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3/15/2004

MORE ART
By popular request...

I call it "Self-Portrait in Pink Speedo Putting the Kung Fu to Dracula, Frankenstein and a Ninja."

3/12/2004

DIARY OF INDIGNITIES
Per Sherri's request, images of me from the nerd convention
I think these are pretty self-explanatory.





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3/09/2004

DIARY OF INDIGNITIES
Megacon: At Play Among the Nerds
March, 2004: Megacon is an annual convention of nerds. This year, I went too.

I should note that while I’m pretty goddamn nerdy, I subscribe to a non-specific type of nerd-dom, one dictated to me by my goofy white-guy appearance. There’s not much hope for me, and I accept that. I mean, I wouldn’t even be cool if I was a millionaire ninja getting a blowjob from Molly Ringwald while driving a 1969 Camaro Z/28. All the helpful-television-homosexual grooming tips in the world wouldn’t change the fact that I always pretty much look like Elvis Costello after falling down a flight or two of stairs, and always will.

But while I’ve learned to accept with my inherent nerd looks, I’ve somehow managed to avoid the logical next step and fully embrace the nerd lifestyle. Now, I grew up loving comics, science fiction, Dungeons ‘n’ Dragons and all manner of nerd pastimes (indeed, in 6th grade I once dressed up like Doctor Who to go to school) (yeah, you read that right, Doctor fucking Who), but saw my enthusiasm for these things wane with the onset of puberty. In my teens, nerd pursuits gradually were supplanted with punk rock, girls and booze, and by the time I was in my 20s I had transformed into a sort of universal loser, geek tendencies now wholly channeled into the ultra-cool hobby of record collecting. Ha ha! I wrote “ultra-cool!” That’s sarcasm.

Still, while I have continued to get a kick out of some traditional nerd-type stuff, a few things about the evolution of modern nerdhood really chapped my ass and alienated me from the nerd lifestyle. These included:

A few years ago I wandered into a local comic shop looking for some arty hipster Daniel Clowes paperback and left 10 minutes later wanting to scrub my entire body down with bleach. Just walking in caused a scene – the nerds could instantly sense that I wasn’t of their tribe, probably because I had a tan and was wearing clean, stylish clothing. A few looked pretty scared, no doubt because they thought I was a cop coming to arrest them for Photoshopping Buffy’s face onto a picture of a lady with her boobs showing and putting it on the Internet.

When I asked about the book, the 40-year-old clerk reluctantly stopped berating his 11-year-old Magic: the Gathering opponent, sighed, looked at me, sneered, sighed again and started to inform me that he was not familiar with the merchandise in question. His voice and mannerisms gave the strong impression that he didn’t think much of me, so I beat him in the face with my penis for a few minutes and went to go browse while he lay there, gasping for air and bleeding all over that one super limited-edition gold-foil Magic card with the picture of the wizard on it.

It was a disturbing experience. The racks displayed comic after comic featuring drawings of anatomically exaggerated women in revealing superhero tights contorting themselves into bizarre, crotch-exposing poses or getting tied-up and beaten. I’m not kidding about the exaggeration, either – the physiques on these heroines verged on the utterly abstract. Especially the boobs. …If it needs to be said.

Recently I asked a friend who had dated a comic artist why these terrible things existed. I mean, there’s so much porn in the world… Type “ice cream” into Google and you’ll get about 3 million pages of “up the ass ice cream tentacle rape Britney Spears blowjob.” Why do the nerds spend all that money on those lame comics when they could spend five seconds on the Internet and come up with so many photos and movies of actual naked women getting debased that their frontal lobes would instantly short out in a blinding, smoke-filled explosion of jism and acne cream?

“They’re so fucked up and uncomfortable around girls that they can’t even relate to photos of women,” she said. “They really do need another level of removal to get off.”

Well, fuck that, ladies and gentlemen. The day I need some creepy comic book to get off instead of something normal like an extended bukkake scene is the day I turn in my balls. (Warning: if you don’t know what bukkake is, KEEP IT THAT WAY. I’m not kidding. I feel creepy even joking about that stuff.)

So anyway, with all this in mind I really wasn’t too excited about the nerd convention. But my friend Todd was visiting from Atlanta, and it was his idea. I hadn’t seen him in a while and felt obligated. My friend Scott agreed to go too. And I figured I could amuse myself by chugging a six-pack out of a football trophy and handing out wedgies while they chanted, “Ogre! Ogre!” or something.

Well, here’s the big surprise: the nerd convention was fun. (Okay, it was a surprise to me – I admit that nobody that’s ever met me would find it a revelation that I fit in with a bunch of nerds.) For the nerds mean no harm; in fact, they work hard to nerd it up at these things, coming up with strange costumes and entertaining the crowds. Their colorful toys, games and tentacle-rape porn has a vibrant, exuberant kind of aesthetic quality that’s hard to resist, if you’re the type of person who washes down your Ritalin with two-liters of Mountain Dew. And they share a heartwarming sense of camaraderie that can only be found among groups of people clustered together in relief, knowing that no jocks are going to show up and smash them into a locker.

Indeed, I feel as if the experience reawakened my inner nerd – who, as it turns out, closely resembles my outer nerd, despite being locked in my pancreas and receiving swirlies from mean red blood cells for the past few decades.

And there were girls there. Lots of ‘em. Plenty of ‘em were pretty hot, too, which was a nice change of pace from the last nerd convention I went to, about 20 years ago. The three women there were beige, 45-year-old, overweight hippie types squeezed into suits of all-too-revealing chain mail. This nerd convention had dozens of teenage Asian girls wearing get-ups chiefly consisting of panties, fishnet stockings and bat wings. There were even black people there. I found all this surprising and reassuring. In fact, I even fell in love with a spectacular 6-foot-tall black girl-nerd wearing a corset. I didn’t make a move because I was afraid she’d turn out to be some kind of 13-year-old pituitary-gland mutant. Or maybe a dude.

I took a bunch of crappy pictures at the thing. They turned out really bad, probably because I was surreptitiously snapping them. In retrospect, this was stupid, as the costumed nerds were more than happy to pose and frolic for anyone who asked. I think maybe on some level I was afraid they’d sense I was planning to use my photos to make fun of them on the Internet, though of course they would have had no way of knowing that. Or doing much about it other than waving around their ninja swords and crying.

Okay, here are the pics:


Upon entering we were greeted by this squat little Dr. Doom. A good omen.


This is a dude.

  
This mundane nerd stepped in front of me while I tried to sneak a pic of the transvestite bunny dude nerd. I was pissed until I noticed he was wearing a camo skirt – then I became happy after realizing I could get a photo of his stupid ass too.


Know what stormtroopers keep in that little cylinder? Snapple. It’s true, I saw it. I wasn’t sure if it was a regulation stormtrooper beverage, so I reported him.


This is a security guard and not a nerd. I just thought it was important to document the fact that he somehow managed to squeeze a pair of 28”-waist pants under that giant gut.


Todd being cool. Ladies - back off! He's married!


Nerd humor.


Erotic fuckin’ mystical space goblin chick.


All the dealer booths had cool names like this.


Nothing special about this, really – I was trying to sneak a photo of something else and the crowd shifted. But it turns out it looks like the one guy is going for that other guy’s ass, so I figured I’d throw it out there. Hey! Don’t touch that dude’s ass!

  
Didn’t manage to get photos of these nerds, so I recreated ‘em from memory for you. The one dude looked like a human potato, and had some kind of complicated homemade liederhosen fashioned from a belt and suspenders to hold up his nuthuggers.


Scott with pals Homer, Gandalf and Rocky. Scott’s on the right.


Turns out nerd-merch dealers are exactly the same as record convention dealers – fat, misshapen, hideous and absurdly coiffed rip-off artists and bootleggers. What a shock.


Lonely ninja, I too resent the popular kids. Teach me your stealthy, moody arts.


Why was there a table selling these things at the nerd convention? They were ignored, much like the guys trying to pimp the positive Jesus comics.


Fuckin’ Gollum scampered right under our feet as we were leaving, scaring the hell out of us. I kicked him.


Another totally hot magical sex elf; this one getting chatted up by Darth Vader. Oh beautiful anime succubus gremlin, won’t you let me rape you with my tentacles?


Todd chillin’ with Hawkman.

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3/03/2004

DIARY OF INDIGNITIES
More Inspiring Examples of Brave Combat Throughout History
Age 11: While wrestling with my 7-year-old sister, I slip, fall on her and bust her nose, causing no small amount of blood to start pouring out of her face. It doesn’t hurt her at all – in fact, she doesn’t even suspect anything’s wrong until she sees my horrified expression. The crying starts after she runs into the bathroom and gets a look at the gory mess, but she’s not upset for long – oh no. Her panic is displaced as a plan forms in her devious little mind.

As she quiets down, I plead with her through the locked bathroom door to not tell our mom about the incident. She doesn’t answer, but I can hear her doing… something. This makes me nervous. After a few minutes, she comes out of the bathroom. She’s no longer bleeding, but she’s smeared thick, dark red nose-blood all over her face and neck. It’s already beginning to dry, setting into a kind of grisly, cracked death mask.

“I’m going to get you into trouble,” she says.

Age 12: I make a friend: Matt Krogh, whose interests happily run parallel to mine. We spend a lot of time making homemade explosives out of model rocket engines and black powder, playing Dungeons and Dragons, getting ignored by snooty chicks at the skating rink and beating the crap out of each other.

We invent this game where one guy puts on swimming goggles and wraps himself in blankets, pillows and puffy jackets while the other guy blindfolds himself and then spins around in circles flinging ninja stars, darts and throwing knives full-force around the room at random. Amazingly, this little pastime inflicts no serious injury on either of us… Unlike the time in his backyard when I become momentarily distracted by a bee or something and take my attention off of Matt for a split second. Feeling an unexpected impact on my chest, and look down to see about seven feet of sharpened bamboo spear sticking straight out of me at a right angle. Matt, at the other end of the yard, stands pale and frozen.

“Shit,” I say, both because it hurts and also because I’m actually admiring his aim a little.

Age 19: There’s this kid named Fessie, okay, and he’s a total punk-rock drama queen. The type of 1980s suburban shithead who’s always derailing a good party by swallowing 14 aspirin or lightly mincing his wrists with a steak knife and siphoning off all the hot goth babes, whose sympathetic nature and love of posed histrionics irrationally draw them in just as surely as Super Extra Hold Aquanet, clove cigarettes, fishnet stockings and gooshy, pale boobies never fail to hypnotize me.

Anyway, Fessie chalks up more than a few black marks in his column throughout the course of a year or so, trying to hit me with his car and trying to bait my friends into fights, no doubt in an attempt to further his wretched martyr act.

I find it easy to ignore the little attention whore, for the most part, until an incident where, adopting a particular sort of obnoxious bravado I’ve observed in many lower life forms, he tries to shake my hand at a keg party. Not only am I disinclined on principle, I’m also using both hands to pour myself a beer during his attempt. I point this out to the little creep (and, all things considered, rather politely, I might add), finish serving myself and walk off.

A few minutes later, I’m in the kitchen staring down the cleavage of some foxy little Draculina and making small talk about Bauhaus or something when Fessie starts fussin’. Supposedly outraged at my snub, he has two or three guys “holding him back” in the other room while he rants and raves about “what a dick” I am. Having seen similar tableaus played out many times, I shrug and return my attention to little miss spooky. After a few more minutes of… of… shit, I don’t remember, probably enthusiastic discussion about the Sisters of Mercy’s Temple of Love 12”, brave young Fessie taps me on the shoulder. When I turn around, he hits my jaw with a sucker punch that boasts all the destructive force of a kitten parachuting into a bowl of flowers.

Fessie is pulled away while, enraged, I make my way to the backyard. Muttering my murderous intent, I empty my pockets and strip off my jacket, watch and shoes. Barking out challenges and threats, I begin a short regimen of stretching, followed by a warm-up routine that includes what I hope is an impressive-looking collection of kicks and shadow boxing. After a minute or two of this, I am out of breath and starting to get cold. I am also wondering why I’m the only one in the backyard. I gather up all my stuff and go inside – the place is deserted. Confused, I go out front – ah. Fessie’s there, bellowing his plan to kick my ass to the entire party, who mostly look bored.

I walk over, hit him with a straight jab and follow it up with a sloppy roundhouse kick to his ribs. He collapses. I look around. People stare at me, disgusted. The goth girls get on their brooms and fly over to the other side of the yard, putting as much space as possible between themselves and me, the big Fessie-beating bully. People start to file back into the house, keeping their distance from me. Angry and frustrated, I steal a Skinny Puppy tape from the host. Then, feeling bad, I put it back.

A short while later, I’m sulking in the corner when some guy comes up to me with blood all over his hand. “I thought you were a dick for beating that one guy up,” he says, “But look – he just bit me in the hand!”

I walk back into the front yard, and Fessie starts screaming at me again. Trapped in some Twilight Zone nightmare where, despite recognizing my fate, I am doomed to repeat the same actions for all of eternity, I grab Fessie by the hair with my left hand and deliver a stiff right square to the center of his forehead. His eyes roll back in his head as he slumps to the ground and starts twitching.

“You done killed him,” says the guy next to me. I start panicking and hopping from foot to foot.

“No… No! There’s no way!” I kneel down to check on Fessie, who, thankfully, is still breathing.

“If’n you didn’t kill him, you at least gave him brain damage,” the one guy mumbles before wandering off disinterested, along with pretty much everybody else.

With visions of prison running through my mind, I sit on the front lawn for the next 20 minutes with Fessie’s head cradled in my lap, desperately trying to revive him and make sure I didn’t give him brain damage. After a while he comes to, looks around and blinks. He’s strangely quiet, but he doesn’t seem… Well, any more brain-damaged than before, and I am relieved.

“Why, Fessie?” I ask. “Why do you do all this stuff? Honestly, man, what’s the deal?”

Head still calmly resting in my lap, he looks up at me for a moment before answering.

“You don’t respect women,” he says.

Age 35: I attend my first kickboxing class. I get winded during the stretches, dizzy during the warm-up and start to black out after about 10 minutes. After my fifth time running outside to gulp down air, a guy says, “Don’t feel bad. I totally threw up on my first night.” I’m too tired to tell him that if I’m not currently barfing my guts out, it’s only because I don’t have the strength, and that I’m sure with time, dedication and hard work I will one day work myself up to a point where I can vomit with the best of ‘em. Meanwhile, the class is filled with 5’2”, 75-pound sorority girls who barely break a sweat while kicking each other in the face and punching heavy bags right off of their chains. After class, six or seven of these girls corner me in the parking lot and demand my lunch money. Ignoring my tears and pleas for mercy, they take my wallet and start hitting me anyway. “Not the face!” I cry as I fall to the ground and cover up as best as I can, too weak from the class to even get an erection.

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