Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tattoos to Make You Rich

I don't want to brag too much*, but the reason I'm not a millionaire is because I don't want to be. Really, I have these brilliant ideas all the time that could make fortunes*, but I rarely act on them. Mostly it's because I feel that my thought-inventions are just too far ahead of the time.The last time that I tried to introduce one of my ideas into the culinary world proved that I really am too far ahead of everyone to be successful. Blueberry Hamburgers will have their day yet, mark my words. 
*This is a blatant lie. 

Anyway, I'd like to share an idea with you, you brilliant-invention-stealer you, so that you can make your fortune. So here's the problem my invention solves: You want a tattoo, but are afraid that in more formal situations, it might reflect poorly on you. The real issue here is that it is difficult to be taken seriously when you have something that essentially says "Born to party/Born an Idiot" in plain view*.

*The real issue for me is that it's difficult to be taken seriously after anyone sees this blog. Not that I ever want to be taken seriously though, so it's ok.

For example...
It just so happened that a car with a flame job was outside the tattoo parlor, and I thought to myself "If flame jobs make cars cooler, they can probably do the same to people!" Please don't have any doubts about hiring me.
Is that what the Pen 15 club means? I was under the impression that this was my initiation fee for a club in which I would receive 15 free pens every month...
"I certainly think I'd be good for this firm. As you can see, my commitment to the survival of the panda bear is something I feel very strongly about. Of course this isn't mickey mouse." 

It's true, I went through a more extreme pirate phase than most people, but don't worry.  This rogue's raping and pillaging days are over for good.

Clearly, you wouldn't want to have much to do with anyone who is displaying any of these birthday-suit stains while the sun is shining, but chances are good you'd want to party with them for a bit. So get your notepads ready, entrepreneurs, here's the idea: black-light tattoos. 

That's right. A tattoo that only comes out under black-lights. This would easily make you the coolest person at any black-light party, or potentially in some bowling alleys at certain times. And what's more, you would never need to bother hiding it in public, because any time there are black-lights around, chances are good that it's socially acceptable to have a tattoo.You could look like mild-mannered Clark Kent by day and hard-rocking Gene Simmons by night, and your boss would never know. 

So please, if you have the know-how, go ahead and invent this. And if you have any ideas for great things to get black-light tattoos of, leave them as a comment.

By the way, many of you have come up to me and complimented me on my blog. Let it be known that comments like that make my day. Let me know what thoughts you have, and if you can, become a follower. It means a lot to me to know that I'm not the only one laughing at this, even if I'm the one laughing the most.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Introducing Milton

So a week or so ago, I was given a great responsibility. You see, a friend of mine thought she was going to have to inconvenience me, and she felt appropriately bad about it. Ultimately, it turned out that everything was going to be ok, and that I wouldn't be inconvenienced in the slightest. However, before we reached that stage, she decided to apologize to me by giving me a gift: a new friend. Well, at least, that's how I saw it. I think she thought she was giving me a plant.

At first, I was excited.  However, I soon realized that this friendship was a great responsibility. Milton, as I named him, requires a good deal of sunlight, being a succulent (as I learned from the label on his pot). My room, luxurious though it is, faces north, and thus does not provide Milton with the sunlight he needs to thrive. Within a few days, I was feeing pretty stressed about the burden his friendship placed on me. I felt guilty for having taken on a responsibility to care for a friend I could not provide for. I could tell that Milton spent a lot of time pining for the great outdoors.
Milton longing for the sunlight he cannot have. In this way, he's a lot like Birdman.
I realized that Milton wasn't going to be happy in our relationship unless I started seeing him outside of my room. So I've begun taking Milton for walks. 
It looks like a coffee cup, but it's just a little too leafy to be java.
I won't lie, I was a little bit self conscious about hanging out with Milton in public at the beginning. A lot of times, I would pretend that I wasn't friends with him.
Whoever that is, he certainly doesn't know what that plant is doing there.
I eventually got over it though, and started talking to him in public. This has ended up working really well for me; he's a great listener, and also gives really good advice.
Me: So, there's this girl I really like, but I don't know what to do.
Milton: Ok, first, you're going to need to find a honey bee. Or you could wait for the wind, if you're patient.
Still, I wish he was better at interacting with his own kind. He always seems a bit removed from other plants, and I worry that he just doesn't fit in with trees, despite how hard he tries.
So, uh... What are you doing next time it rains?
So that's Milton. I'll probably be spending a lot of time with him this semester, so if you see me out and about with him, drop by and introduce yourself. No one will think the worse of you for talking to plants. You'll just be grouped in the same region as people who talk to their fish and me.

Anyway, sorry for the lack of posting recently. I've been really busy (this doesn't sound right when I say it), but I'll try to ignore my work more effectively in the future. 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Subterranean Transportation Hesitations

Everyone who has been in New York City knows that the subway is a part of life in the city. I try to avoid it as often as possible for a variety of reasons, but most of all because of a phobia I've had since I was little. I really blame my dad for this phobia. Actually, I blame my dad for most of the of seemingly irrational phobias I have, which, taken together, make me demonstrably neurotic. But this one in particular, which is unfortunate, because it's really a serious issue that comes up often in city life.

The situation would always go something like this.

I'd be standing on the platform just minding my own business.
Mistake no. 1: Standing too close to the edge.
Now, there's normally a wait for the subway, so there I would be, bored and blending into the scenery. I'd grab something to read to pass the time while waiting for the train.
Mistake no. 2: Introducing a distraction.
The real issue is that, important person that I am, it's likely that I've attracted the attention of someone who really has it in for me. I don't know how, maybe I flashed money unknowingly.

Mistake no. 3: Showing off a dime. EVERYONE wants dimes.
Alternatively, I imagine some sort of time-travelling situation in which someone from the future has been sent to prevent me from doing something great. Of course, having perfected time travel, these ne'er-do-gooders think that a subway accident would be the best way to get rid of me. Anyway, this is the hooligan whose attention I have now grabbed.

A common thug, surveying the scene to make sure there are no witnesses.
So this is what it comes down to. I'm reading my paper, a train is coming. Life is good. I will soon be several stations away. Then, this happens.
Mistake no. 4: Allowing yourself to be pushed into the way of an oncoming subway. This is the most serious mistake as of yet.
And the last thing that was ever seen of me would be this.
Mistake no. 5: Not getting between the tracks and allowing the subway to roll safely overhead. And no, that is not a safety harness made out of thread.
So there you have it. I don't like taking the subway, because I'm convinced strangers want nothing more than to give me a hearty shove in the back into oncoming trains. But if you are alert like me, you can avoid this unfortunate happening by keeping your back against the wall from the moment you set foot into a subway station.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A Few Suggestions for Facebook

I'm one of those people who gets annoyed whenever Facebook changes. I don't get annoyed because change frightens me (it does); I get annoyed because none of the changes are the sort of changes that Facebook should enact to make it a better social networking tool. Let's be honest, that's what Facebook is: social networking. And the point of every social network is to make the cool kids look and feel cooler and the dweeby kids (like that one who posts links to his own blog constantly) feel worse about themselves. So I sent Mark Zuckerberg an e-mail with these suggestions to make Facebook a better, less hospitable place. Here's a copy of the e-mail I sent him.

Dear friend Mark,
Facebook is really great, but sometimes when I use it, I can delude myself into thinking I'm cool. Could you change it around a bit to fix that? Here are some suggestions to help distinguish cool kids from not cool kids.

1) In addition to a "Like" button, how about a "Like... NOT!" button? That way, cool kids can use sarcasm, one of their best weapons, to demean people with statuses about Twilight or their own blog.

2) You receive a notification when someone accepts your friendship. Now man up and make Facebook gives out notifications when someone rejects your friendship. And make it go automatically to the newsfeed. If possible, let the person who rejects the friend request give a reason. Eg. "Brian rejected Luke's heartfelt friend request because Brian doesn't like to be friends with people whose girlfriend he has slept with."

3) Once you reach a certain number of Facebook friends, you should be able to steal friends from your enemies without them knowing. That's how it works in real life; it's only fair that it be like that in Facebook.

4) Only the person who posts something should have the power to delete it, no matter whose wall it is posted on. Otherwise, it's straight-up censorship. If I want everyone who looks at so-and-so's wall to know that so-and-so is a penis, so-and-so shouldn't be able to hide that.

5) On a related note, make gifts actually valuable, so that so-and-so will have a means to bribe me to take down that post about him being a penis. Acceptable gifts could be actual gift certificates to a place like Hooters, lottery tickets or other people's passwords.

6) Relationship statuses should have a blank left in front of them so that friends can fill in an appropriate adjective. Then there can be a run-off vote to see which adjective fit bests.
Eg. Brendan is ________ single. 
a) obviously
b) pathetically
c) reluctantly
d) ,ThanksToARestrainingOrder,
 e) all of the above

Hope to see these in the next update!
Your user,

So we'll see where this goes. He'll probably reply back and ask me if I have any more suggestions because these were so great, so if you have any pointers, feel free to add them!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Introducing my Stunt Double

I mentioned a while back that I was looking for a stunt double. Naturally, applications flooded in; I actually received two million* resumes. Of course, I had high expectations for the person who would stand in for me in all of the stupid things I do. I'm pleased to announce that the job was awarded to someone who met all of my requirements. Fearless? Check. Bears a strange resemblance to me? Check. Unable to distinguish good ideas from near-death experiences waiting to happen? Check. Almost entirely indestructible? Check. Meet my new stunt double.
*Two million is my new large number. I use it interchangeably with 'a lot.' eg: "Brendan, you don't have any friends, don't lie." "That's not true, I have, like, two million!"
Meet Miniature Brendan. Note his dedication; he even wears a "B."
It wasn't easy to settle on the right applicant for the job. I'll be honest, I was tempted to hire this next guy, but it didn't seem right. Something about him was just too cool. And I don't really want a stunt double who would make me look even less cool in comparison than I already do.
Damn, he even has a leather jacket and manly stubble.
What's more, it just wasn't realistic. I mean, shoot, he's even good with the ladies.*
*I've noticed that anyone who refers to women as a group as "the ladies" is generally not good with 'the ladies.'

"Ooooh, you're so manly. Hold me, please."
"Damn straight, I am. Hoo-ah!"
Then I saw how little Brendan did with the fairer sex, and it was comforting to see someone equally inept as I am.

"Um, hi. I'm Brendan."
"You idiot, can't you tell I'm on my bluetooth?"
"Oh. I'll go cry now. Nice to have tried to talk to you."
 But then there were some applications that I didn't consider for my stunt double, despite their awesome facial hair. These were the photos they submitted; I can only imagine what horrors they committed to end up in such a police lineup. It probably involved round yellow heads rolling around, dismembered hands, and torsos cleanly separated from legs.
Would ya look at that! They're the same height!
So that's my new supporting cast; keep an eye out for them as they help me document dangerous adventures in my life.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Toilet Paper Astounds Me

So before I begin this post, I should warn you that the inspiration for this came to me in the restroom, so to quote the New York Post movie reviews, there may be "references to scatological humor." Consider yourself warned.

So no shit, there I was*, without any reading material. Fortunately, maintenance sees fit to stock my bathroom with enough toilet paper to recopy most of Tolstoy's works onto, in case I had the urge or the time**.
** While I was writing this, they actually added one roll to my supply. Yep. Needed that one.

Apparently how much TP I'm expected to use in a day.

 I've been told that toilet paper is a sheet-spinning read, so I picked up a roll. Well, it was a pretty quick read, but there was a surprise ending.  

Would ya look at that! Safe for septic systems!
Who would have thought! It's safe for septic systems! Shoot, I've been doing it wrong this whole time. I could've just flushed it! But really, of course it's safe for septic systems (right?). What's the alternative? And what happens if you flush toilet paper that is not safe for septic systems?

Next time, use Downy!
But because they say "safe for septic systems" on the wrapper, I suspect that there are alternate uses for the stuff, and that septic systems are just one of the many things you might be able to use it for.

Sterile for most urgent first-aid purposes!

Acid-free for all masterpieces of the written word!

Guaranteed to preserve your body for the afterlife!

It will still annoy your neighbors!
If you have any other uses for toilet paper, feel free to suggest additional photos, and I'll see if I can add them in. What else am I supposed to do with it, flush it? Gosh, no. Way to valuable for that.

Now that classes have started again for me (for those of you who don't know me, I'm still a college student), posting may decrease a tiny bit. But fingers crossed not. Anyways, hope you enjoyed it. Tell your friends, and use that toilet paper to the maximum of its potential.

Friday, September 3, 2010


So I owe the world an apology. Here goes.

Hey, World. For a long four days, I lost a lot of faith in you. You did not seem nearly as full of good people as I once thought you were. I thought you were filled with nasty people who lurk in shadows and, when the time is right, take my bike. I perceived your calm indifference to my plight as cruel disdain. I was wrong. You are a good place that treats me well; thank you for correcting my mistaken point of view.

What warrants this change in opinion? Well, I've been reunited with my bike, which is a pretty big deal to me. Spirits have been high; so high that many people having been asking me what drug I've been on, and more importantly, where they can get it. A typical conversation goes something like this:

Friend: My grandfather died recently.
Me: *grins blankly*
Friend: It was horrible.
Me: Aaaaaaaaah. You know that feeling you get when you have an itch on your back, and someone scratches it for you, really, really well?
Friend: He died of tuberculosis. His final words were hacking coughs in my direction. I think I'm wildly contagious, and I've definitely been coughing a lot around you...
Me: I feel like that, except plus the feeling you get when you kiss the girl you love.
Friend:  Brendan. Mortality, pain, suffering and loss.
Me: Mmmm. I feel like I'm in a Jack Johnson song.

So I may have lost a few friends this week because of insensitivity, but it doesn't matter that much to me, because I have my bike back. "But how?," you ask! Well, I suppose I should go back to the whole 'my bike was stolen' issue.

Here's the story that I didn't tell when the wound was too fresh. My friend Vick and I saw Scott Pilgrim vs. The World* on a touching man-date. We decided that the evening had gone well so far, and we didn't want it to end, so we went to the Pony bar** on 45th and 10th. I locked my bike up to a rack with two other bikes. I noticed that the rack was dangerously unattached to the ground, a lot like Shane, the wandering cowboy. "Nah, this will never be taken," I thought to myself.  An hour later, the rack was gone; Shane the rack had moved on, singing his lonesome cowboy song.  Thus began a dark period in my life; I looked suspiciously at all bike messengers, leered at bike racks, and shunned contact with the outside world and showers (not that these last two are that unusual).
*This is an awesome movie. It was like reading a comic book, playing a video game and watching a movie all at once. I recommend it if you enjoy fun things.
**This is an awesome bar. It serves beer! More specifically, it always has 20 delicious microbrews on tap for 5$ a piece.

Well, I went past the location where Shane the rack had disappeared from this past Friday. He was back; he didn't bring my bike with him, but he was there all right. "Those thieves are at it again!," I thought. I swore to myself angrily, and went up to a messenger who was unlocking his bike from that very rack. I noticed for the first time that the rack was stationed in front of a restaurant.

Me: *Trying to be as intimidating as Humphrey Bogart (I think I was as threatening as Elmer Fudd, in reality)* Is this your rack? 
Be very quiet. I'm hunting my bike.
Messenger: "Yes..."
Me: *Menacingly* Did you know I had a bike stolen from here Monday?
Messenger: Oh. A white one?
Me: Um... yeah?
Messenger: Yeah, it's inside. Want it back?
Me: Um... yes please?
I was so vewy, vewy wrong about the wocation and status of my bike. I also need to change my underwear from shock.

That was it. He went inside and talked to his boss, who rolled my bike out of the kitchen in the same shape it was in Monday. They had cut it off of the rack, and then they just took it inside and held onto it. They didn't sell it; the messengers weren't using it. They just didn't want it to be stolen if I left it there overnight. I was stunned, and in no state to talk. I fumbled for my wallet, handed the messenger a 20 dollar bill and hugged him through the tears. I then made out in public with my bike (more or less); after some PDA, I raced my way up Amsterdam avenue, emitting whoops of joy every time a taxi came within inches of killing me.

So, my bike is back, and all is well with the world, at least far as it pertains to me. And you know, I went back to where my bike was recovered that night because I was in the neighborhood. When I passed by, Shane wasn't there. "Come back, Shane! Come back!" I screamed to the empty city. And that's when the girl I was with ran away as quickly as she could.

God bless us, each and every one!