American Idle

It's kinda like American Idol, but only if you sing my posts out loud.

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Location: Hamilton Square, New Jersey, United States

Tax guy, host & producer of the Consumerism Commentary Podcast, former co-host of the Wall Street Journal E-Report

Friday, February 24, 2006

What the hell are we calling this decade anyway?

Seriously. In five years when VH1 does their "I Love The..." series about this decade, what will they be calling it? The 2000's? The Aughts? The Aughties? What the hell did they call it back in 1910?

*Update*: Apparently Wikipedia doesn't even know.

If I was into seances, this is how I would waste time with my grandparents.

"Tommy! I'm so happy! You've given me a beautiful great-grandchild! I'm so proud of you!"
"Uh yeah, that's great and all...but I have a question for you."
"What is it? Do you want to know how your grandfather and I are doing? Do you want to know what heaven is like?"
"Uh. Kinda. What I really want to know is...uh...what did they call the 1900's when you were alive?"
(uncomfortable silence)
"I always did like your sister best."

KFC commerical challenges TiVo users

The big question in the ad industry recently has been how to combat the growing number of TiVo and other DVR users that fast forward through commercials. Is KFC on to something?


Here's the spoiler, found through a simple Google blog search (because none of us can keep secrets). The secret word is......buffalo.

My recommendation: start putting a slow motion video up in the top corner of commercials that'll show:

1. your company logo
2. maybe some text selling your product ("Super Crunchers this week only: 99 cents").

If they keep it simple, it'll permit at least the basics to be seen during a fast forward.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Contract of Wifely Expectations

Where was this in 2003 when I got married? I'm going to plead the fifth on all other comments, just in case my wife happens to actually read my blog. :)

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Bad choice of clothing

So I'm in WaWa today grabbing coffee before I go to work and a guy with a full blown, mid-eighties Wayne Gretzky Edmonton Oiler jersey is there. As he's walking out, I say to him, "ooof, all you need is a guy in a Tocchet jersey with a wad of money following you around and you'd be all set". He just mumbled something under his breath and walked away.

Let's briefly recap Gretzky history. Wayne Gretzky played for the Edmonton (Alberta, Canada) Oilers up until the late eighties. He finished his career with the New York Rangers in 1999. Aside from coaching the Phoenix Coyotes and Team Canada in the Olympics, he's been relatively out of the spotlight until the recent gambling scandal that arose last week.

Dude, if you're going to wear an Oilers Gretzky jersey NOW, you'd better have a sense of humor. You don't see me walking around dressed like Dick Cheney in an orange hunting blazer, and if I did, you know I'd be smiling.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Why you always, ALWAYS play in the office lottery pool

Now that Powerball is at $300 million, here are the only two reasons you need to justify playing in your co-workers' office pool.

1. If they win, you'll be miserable that you didn't get in on the action.
2. Not only will you be miserable, you'll also be left doing their workload when they all quit on you, making your life a living hell.

Case closed. Your $5 entry fee is well worth the peace of mind you'll receive.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


Crap, I've been tagged.

Four jobs you’ve had in your life:

Four movies you can watch over and over:

Four places you have lived:

  • Mercerville, NJ
  • Trenton, NJ
  • Hamilton, NJ
  • A Sheltered Life
Four TV shows you love to watch:

Favorite afterlife:

Four places you have been on vacation:

  • Rio De Janiero, Brazil
  • Nassau, Bahamas
  • Montreal, Quebec
  • With the exception of anything northwest of Missouri, pretty much all of the U.S.
Four websites you visit daily: Favorite vertebrae:
  • Seventh
  • Thirty-third
  • Nineteenth
  • Steve
Four of your favorite foods:
  • Red Robin's peppercorn burger
  • Rita's cookies & cream Misto
  • Golden Dawn's tuna melt
  • Coffee. I don't care if it's not a "food".

Four places you would rather be right now:

  • In a large mansion, laying in bed with TVs surrounding me.
  • At the Super Bowl
  • In Boston, watching a hockey game
  • In Boston, at the Samuel Adams plant
Favorite Languages:

Four bloggers you’re tagging (who are under no obligation to continue):

    I don't know any untagged bloggers.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

I Like Faggy Bands and I Don't Know Why

So as I’m sitting there listening to Secret Machines’ “The Road Leads Where It’s Led”, it hits me…these are some of the stupidest lyrics I’ve ever heard (“we communicate by semaphore, no language we’ve got flags of our own”??), the lead singer’s inflections have me questioning his sexuality and, even worse, I can’t stop listening to it. Not only that, I’ve played four of the five first songs on the album OVER and OVER again and now I’m starting to get into the last half of the album.

If this was the first time this had happened, I could live with it, but I’m still reeling from the Placebo album I bought back in the late nineties, in which I heard “Pure Morning” on some internet broadcast and thought the guy sounded like Geddy Lee. Problem is that Geddy Lee is cool, but the lead singer of Placebo kinda dressed like a woman.

But not only that, pretty much every band that I’ve ever really gotten into was kind of on the outskirts of coolness, or at least never outright masculine like, say, George Thorogood or Van Halen.

It all started with ELO, a band to which this day, I still follow almost religiously. ELO was never cool, at least not amongst my friends. I endured endless ribbing through grade school, especially when I was in denial during their disco phase in the late seventies (yeah that’s right Ed, after 25 years, I’m finally admitting you were right).

Then I got into Yes and Rush during the eighties. Fortunately, Rush always had a degree of coolness, but Yes went downhill quickly after their brief 90125 resurgence. Unfortunately, following those bands led to numerous embarrassing situations in my car when I found myself singing in a high falsetto voice with the window open.

Then in the nineties, it was They Might Be Giants, which just about labeled me an outcast amongst most of my friends. Fortunately, I had Tool and A Perfect Circle in the late nineties to allow me to save face…although some of THEIR lyrics have me scratching my head about Maynard James Keenan’s sexuality.

It’s not that I’m a homophobe…at least I don’t think I am. It’s just that when you’re alone in your car, blasting your radio and fantasizing that you’re the lead singer of the band, there needs to some relevance to the lyrics that you’re singing. So when you get to a song with lyrics like “all the darlings cover earth with bare hands”, it’s kind of a buzzkill.

The problem is that I have an addictive personality when it comes to music. All I need is to be pulled in by one song and the next thing you know, I’ve downloaded their entire catalog and have listened to it exclusively for a year straight. It happened with ELO (Telephone Line), Yes (Roundabout), They Might Be Giants (Birdhouse in Your Soul) and Tool (Sober). And the goddamn Secret Machines song I heard (Now Here is Nowhere) I came across by simply flipping through channels and catching the video on MTV2 (yes, they were actually playing a video).

So now I’m hoping that I come across something else soon to end this Secret Machines fascination. The worst part is that I’m sort of an elitist…I can’t follow a band that someone recommends to me. I have to find it on my own so that I can claim it as my own in some stupid way, and not feel like I’m sponging off of someone else’s favorite.

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