To the best of my recollection, this was Thanksgiving 1993.
I was 21 and living in Chicago. I'd moved there a few months earlier, under the promise of a job at the Second City, a famed comedy club, that evaporated before I'd ever set foot in the door. Being young and refusing to give up, I stayed for the adventure. My apartment was incredibly cheap, and I was performing a lot more than I had been in LA. I thought I'd make this my new home.
My two roommates had left town to visit family. Greg, a fellow improvisational comedian who'd suffered the same retracted job offer as I, was off to Massachusetts. Marko, a 6'6" pre-frontally lobotomized hoarder who suffered from homophobia, anti-semitism, and only experienced joy while performing as a children's party clown, was someplace I did not care.
Over the many years, I have come to recognize that homophobic, anti-semitic, hoarder, children's party clown roommates come with an increased incidence of violent death. The rent was really cheap.
My friend Kevin came into town from Los Angeles, we didn't even think about dinner. Mostly, we liked to drink. We were 21 and it was cold.
It was Thursday, everything was closed and we were hungry. We realized it was Thanksgiving. I am absolutely certain this very-good-idea-were-we-not-broke-as-fuck was Kevin's and not mine: we would go to the Chicago Ritz-Carlton and join their Thanksgiving dinner.
We decided that appearances would matter and that we should look nice if we intended to have dinner with rich and fancy people at a rich and fancy place. Read the rest
As Trump FCC Chairman Ajit Pai tries to kill Net Neutrality under cover of Thanksgiving, Cloudflare CEO Matthew Prince has tweeted that he is looking into ways that he can legally take up Josh Constantine's challenge to give Pai "14.4k dial-up speeds for killing net neutrality." (Image: Evan-Amos, CC-BY-SA) (via /.) Read the rest
11 years ago, Trump made a big deal out of the Trump Soho, a 46-story luxury hotel/condo that paid Trump for the use of his name and the dubious management services of the Trump Organization; now, after a string of scandals including the revelation that Trump's business-partners were money-laundering Russian mafiosi, the revelation that Trump had defrauded buyers with lies about the sell-through, and the toxification of Trump's name for anyone with a lick of sense of decency, the business is parting ways with Trump. Read the rest
The Republican Party has always struggled to attract woman voters, but the triumph of admitted rapist Donald Trump and the party's backing of child-molester Roy Moore, the Dominionist misogyny of Mike Pence, and the painfully obvious hatred of women from the Grand Old Patriarchs has galvanized opposition to the Republicans from women who historically voted without much thought about gender issues: independents, reluctant Democrats, college-educated affluent white women, and other women whom the GOP relied on for votes, or at least indifference. Read the rest
A year ago today, Scots blogger Kevin Gray posted the final daily item at Nothing To Do With Arbroath, a "daily mish-mash" and perhaps the best blog ever to grace the web.
He posted again a few times to update readers on the serious illness that was consuming him, but the last we saw of Gray's inimitable eye for "stuff, fluff and nonsense" was this photo of police helping a family of ducks cross the road, published on November 23, 2016. A final update warned readers he had months to live, not years; he died days later, aged 56.
I'm thankful for many things this year, but none more so that my baby son and Kevin Gray. May his sense of wonder still guide us onward, with the diligent empathy of a Japanese traffic police officer, through chaos and heavy traffic. Read the rest
Uncle Bill, in keeping with tradition, please lead us in A Thanksgiving Prayer.
America is in the midst of a "retail apocalypse": 6,800 chain stores are closing this year. It's true that online retailers and winner-take-alls like Walmart have delivered the coup de grace that finished off these stores, but the conditions that made them weak enough to kill are driven by Wall Street, not Walmart. Read the rest
Welcome to the holidays!
After many a slumber party, my kid told me the air mattress had developed an annoying slow leak. I used this patch kit.
The guy in the video found his leak a lot faster than I did. A LOT. Sigh. I used a spray bottle of soapy water. I used a safety razor to shave the fuzz off the mattress.
His space-agey "bird" is made of "turkey meatloaf skewered and studded with turkey wieners, turkey kielbasa, ‘lil turkey smokies and fresh cranberries."
He writes, "I didn’t mean to do this, it just happened. I didn’t think about it, I just did it."
On Monday, the Weather Channel was live-streaming the planned implosion of the Georgia Dome for a full 40 minutes before a bus pulled up in front of their camera, completely blocking their shot at the exact wrong moment. Oops! Read the rest
What do people most want to know about Stranger Things? Google's search engine's autocomplete will tell us. Here's Stranger Things stars Joe Keery and Gaten Matarazzo to answer those most-commonly asked questions about their hit show and themselves.