All the World’s a Stage

Shakespeare the Pro Wrestler

Act V, Scene V. An arena.

     Enter Face, a professional wrestler. His opponent, Heel, waits within the ring.

Face
Villain, thou wears the gold of champions,
Which once did rest upon my worthy waist!
I name thee thief, for valor won it not,
But base deceit this hallowed ring disgraced!

Heel
A thief, am I? Then bitter is thy name,
Or fool, to think thy acrid tongue can wound!
This victor’s belt is mine, with glory earned;
Thy claim and challenge both are rightly doomed!

Face
The doom is thine, our contest shall agree,
And hardest lesson thou will shortly learn:
By tricks, thou wrested my beloved prize,
But skill will guarantee its fair return!

Heel
Have at me then with all thy vaunted strength
And break thyself upon the gates of hell!
This devil aches to make his powers known!
Official, come and ring the starting bell!

     Enter the Official, a referee. He signals for the match to begin.
     Face and Heel do battle.

Face
I gift thee now a short-arm elbow smash!

Heel
And I repay a chest marked red with chops!

Face
Reversed, have I; take this, a spinning knee!

Heel
‘Tis countered quick by three atomic drops!

Face
Submit then, knave, to crossface chicken wing!

Heel
Fie! Break it! Stand! Feel powerbombs of pain!

Face
Into the ropes, I swing thee; meet my boot!

Heel
A chair of steel, I grasp, to rock thy brain!

     Enter the Chorus, ringside commentators.

Chorus
And so they rage, opponents evermore,
To entertain the host of watchers wide;
Though some may dub their war a mummer’s farce,
Bard Shakespeare staged more fictious fare beside.

In other words, professional wrestling is legit, y’all.

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Tips for Introverts: How to Survive a Party

The Introvert

  1. As soon as you arrive, ask if Choco Tacos® are being served. If they’re not, and they won’t be, loudly shout, “What sort of party is this?!” and walk out. From then on, everyone will know the sort of hills you’re willing to die on.
  2. Wander around while staring intently at the carpet. If anyone tries to stop you, simply mumble, “I have to locate the crystal.” If this doesn’t afford you a wide berth, nothing will.
  3. Take a keen interest in the decor, because (a) it will give the impression that you’re busy and (b) bric-a-brac doesn’t ask you how work is going.
  4. Visit the bathroom often, because the more you do, the more likely it is that people will avoid it and you. This is the very definition of a win-win.
  5. If someone engages you, respond to everything they say with, “I can’t believe you just said that to me.” Sooner or later, they’ll pick up on the subtext.
  6. Be the ass end of a pantomime horse. Note: this requires a partner and is usually reserved for costume parties, but with a tweak here and there, who knows?
  7. Bring a ventriloquist’s dummy with you. People will give you space. (This works equally well with dolls, nunchucks, and the works of Ayn Rand.)
  8. Go to sleep. This is especially effective if done in the host’s bedroom. Warning: you may be asked to explain yourself before getting the boot.
  9. Wear a name tag that reads, “@#$% off.” Assuming your fellow partygoers are literate, this should do the talking for you.
  10. Don’t go. Problem solved.

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Inbox Says “No”

Delete

SUBJECT: BLACK FRIDAY IS COMING
Delete.
SUBJECT: BLACK FRIDAY IS STILL COMING
Delete.
SUBJECT: BLACK FRIDAY IS COMING WHETHER YOU LIKE IT OR NOT
Delete.
SUBJECT: DID BLACK FRIDAY MENTION THAT BARGAINS WERE COMING, TOO?
Delete.
SUBJECT: DID BLACK FRIDAY ALSO MENTION THE COMING OF DEALS?
Delete.
SUBJECT: YOU CANNOT STOP THE COMING OF BLACK FRIDAY… OR ITS BARGAINS AND DEALS
Delete.
SUBJECT: COUPONS! FREE! CHANCE TO WIN! SALE! NUDITY! (OH, AND BLACK FRIDAY IS COMING)
Delete.
SUBJECT: THIS IS NOT ABOUT THE COMING OF BLACK FRIDAY
Delete.
SUBJECT: SERIOUSLY, THIS IS NOT ABOUT THE COMING OF BLACK FRIDAY
Delete.
SUBJECT: HOW DID YOU KNOW THOSE LAST TWO E-MAILS WERE ABOUT THE COMING OF BLACK FRIDAY?
Delete.
SUBJECT: BLACK FRIDAY ONLY WANTS WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU, FRIEND
Delete.
SUBJECT: OK, BLACK FRIDAY IS REALLY BEGINNING TO HATE YOU
Unsubscribe. Report spam. Delete. Empty trash.
SUBJECT: CYBER MONDAY IS COMING

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Link of the Week: Dirtbags

Link of the Week

Have you ever wondered what your favorite characters/people would be like if they were, in fact, dirtbags?* Well, wonder no more. (About that, obviously. By all means, wonder away about other stuff. Like otters, for instance.) Thankfully, Mallory Ortberg, an editor of The Toast and undeniable genius, eliminates the cumbersome guesswork of imagining for yourself by bringing these dirtbags to glorious life for you. Still incredulous? Fine, then. Feast your brain feelers on a scene from the dirtbag version of Shakespeare’s Macbeth:

MACBETH is sleeping. LADY MACBETH pops a BMX wheelie over their bed.
LADY MACBETH: you should kill duncan
MACBETH: idk
LADY MACBETH: or i could do it
MACBETH: what
LADY MACBETH: its fine ill do it
brb
LADY MACBETH wheelies offstage.

That’s right: you’re sold. You can find more here, here and here. And when you’ve finished, make sure to read everything else The Toast has to offer. It’s one of the funniest websites around that isn’t actually this website.

*Your favorite characters/people may be dirtbags already, in which case, no wondering is required. Also… why?

2014 Tony Vicory.

A Recipe for Disaster: Music Video Edition

Music Video

  1. Prepare 1 popular song from a recently released music album. (Make sure to discard any of its original context; otherwise, the song’s flavor might contain some residual meaning, which, of course, inhibits digestion.)
  2. With the context removed, begin separating the song’s lyrics from its instrumentals, using either a paring knife or a large meat hammer. (Remember: butchering is an art, not a science, so don’t worry if most of the lyrics don’t survive the process, as long as the kick-@$$ beats remain intact.)
  3. When ready, add 1+ recording artist(s). Dress in hyper-sexualized clothing — if at all possible, use cut-outs, strategically torn acid wash jeans, and leather chaps — and cake with monster make-up. (Note: in lieu of clothing, nudity may suffice, but this only works if at some point during the video the recording artist relaxes on a cloud or writhes on a cotton candy machine.)
  4. Combine with 1+ love interest(s), 3+ background dancers, and 5+ randomly selected extras, preferably attractive and in various stages of crying. (Pro-tip: background dancers and extras can be substituted with exotic dancers and skittish-looking woodland creatures, respectively.)
  5. Mix the ingredients together in a large bowl. (If they do not blend easily, you may need to re-butcher them with 1,000+ jump cuts or re-label this recipe as “experimental.”)
  6. Once the ingredients are fully integrated, pour the mixture into a pre-heated pressure cooker/nightclub/well-lit industrial warehouse. Allow to simmer for roughly 5 minutes in front of a camera.
  7. Serve while hot… and then serve again and again and again until completely spoiled.
  8. Apologize.

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Tweets without a Twitter (Account): Typo Edition

Twitter Bird

Accidentally typed “amanwalked.com.” Increased my own website traffic exponentially. #TheseJokesDoNotReadThemselves

Accidentally typed “amanwanked.com.” What a difference one letter makes! #NotMyWebcam

Accidentally typed “amanwalled.com.” Who knew there was The Cask of Amontillado fan fiction? #EdgarAllanPoeSaysPeopleShouldGetOutMore

Accidentally typed “amanwoked.com.” Mmm, stir fry recipes. #DeliciousMistake

Accidentally typed a 300-page dissertation. You can take the man out of scholarship, but… #ItNeededToBeSaid #AnotherDiplomaPlease

Accidentally typed on a typewriter. #AnalogIsTheNewDigital

Accidentally typed. Of course I’m paying attention to you, Honey. #ThatWasClose

Accidentally typed a YouTube comment. #HateMyselfNow #SoAshamed

Accidentally typed a magical spell. Anyone in the market for a hell beast? #WillCuddleForSouls

Accidentally typed “qwedcfgvbnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn”; got nowhere. #KeyboardFacePlant

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Daylight Saving Time: An Open Letter

Daylight Saving Time

Dear Daylight,

This “Saving Time” has to stop. For too long, the human race has been enabling your carelessness, and now it’s time you learned to regulate your own hours. It’s honestly not that much to ask. You’ve only got two appointments a day — sunrise and sunset — and we think you’ve been around long enough, say, 4.5 billion years, to handle that sort of scheduling by yourself.

Sure, this arrangement may have seemed like a great deal in the past — to lose an hour in the spring only to regain it in the fall — but it’s proven itself to be a faulty investment, Daylight. No one ever really gets that hour back. Instead, it just gets subtracted from the workdays and church services and children’s softball games we miss, because we forgot to wind back our @#$%ing clocks on a busy Saturday night.

And speaking of clocks, let’s not ignore the millions sacrificed on this altar every year, either by flinging or smashing or late afternoon returns to Walmart. Unlike you, they’re reliable timekeepers, Daylight, and they deserve better than this. Much better. Their broken cogs are on your metaphorical hands.

So, please, Daylight, do us a favor and take responsibility. It’s time to be your own hero in this story. It’s time to save yourself.

Sincerely,
Homo sapiens

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

A Halloween Love Story

Picture Not Available

A man walked into a costume party. He was not dressed for the occasion… although, he might have been, if Creepy Naked Guy were an acceptable thing to be. “What are you doing?” his girlfriend shouted, rushing across the room to cover his private bits with a 4×4 paper napkin. “I wanted to be sexy,” the man said confusedly, “like all of you.” “Well, this is not how you do it,” his girlfriend replied. She was reddening with embarrassment, but it was hard to tell, since she was dressed as a sexy tomato. “But look,” the man argued, pointing at individual revelers, “there’s sexy water sprinkler and sexy dismembered corpse and sexy pantomime Hidalgo from the 2004 action-adventure film, Hidalgo…” His girlfriend began to cry. “Oh, Peter, you just haven’t been the same since that freak weather balloon accident,” she said, whimpering. “I’m sorry,” Peter answered, lowering his head. It was true: those weather balloons had changed him — and not for the better. “Don’t worry, Lisa,” he said, “I’ll leave.” He tried patting her on the shoulder, but soon remembered that tomatoes really didn’t have shoulders. Lisa wiped her eyes and smiled. “No,” she said, clearing her throat, “I mustn’t be upset; this isn’t your fault.” She let go of the napkin and began to remove her own costume. “You are sexy,” she announced boldly, “and I’m going to be sexy with you.” Just then, the party’s host cut in and said, “Listen, guys, you’re really starting to gross everyone out; I mean, sexy wholesale tuna just threw up in the punch bowl.” Peter and Lisa turned to see and yes, indeed, how unfortunate for sexy wholesale tuna. “I’m gonna need to ask you to go,” the host said. Peter nodded. “We understand,” he replied. “Yeah,” Lisa added, “I guess we’re just too sexy for this sexy costume party.” She wrapped her bare arm around Peter’s. “Come along,” she said, and together they walked unashamed out of the ballroom, passing by sexy wind chimes and sexy Grim Reaper and sexy half-eaten bologna sandwich…

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

When Good Reviews Go Bad: Book Edition

Bad_Book

  1. You’ve never read a book like this before… and you’ll never want to again.”
  2. I couldn’t put it down. No matter what I tried, it just wouldn’t die.”
  3. I laughed so hard that I cried, because this thriller was @#$%ing terrible.”
  4. Five stars! That’s right: it would take five stars, each burning at their radioactive peak, to incinerate this atrocity from my memory.”
  5. The characters leapt from the pages, because even they didn’t want to be in them.”
  6. It’s better than The Da Vinci Code… which isn’t saying much, when you think about it.”
  7. Everyone must read this book, because if I’m the only one who had to, I’m going to be super-pissed.”
  8. It’s destined to become a bestseller, because it’s the perfect size to replace wobbly Ikea coffee table legs.”
  9. I was on the edge of my seat, but before I knew it, I was on the floor. Balancing while you’re asleep can be really difficult!”
  10. It’s inspired… me to stop reading altogether.”

© 2014 Tony Vicory.

Link of the Week: Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger

Link of the Week

Some monsters are misunderstood. Other monsters are, well, incomprehensible. And none are more baffling (or entertaining) than the ones found in Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger, the 1992 Japanese television show that inspired Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. Thank God that someone on Wikipedia took the time trying to make sense of them all. Here are two wonderful examples to whet your appetite:

“Dora Endos (ドーラエンドス Dōra Endosu) is a pineapple/octopus monster with the power to cause people to sneeze uncontrollably until they die of it. His own weakness is cold water which he fears. Posing as a clown, he created soccer balls that contained his sneezing powder, using a boy named Isamu to do the dirty work in targeting many of the soccer teams. […] He is voiced by Kazuhiko Kishino and portrayed by Hiroya Kishibata (岸端 浩也 Kishibata Hiroya).”

“Dora Skeleton (ドーラスケルトン Dōra Sukeruton) is a skeleton with a large hat, who could reassemble his body after being blown apart. The Rangers went after him when Dora Skeleton was sent to retrieve a shuttle. His flying, disembodied skull could teleport people to a shadowy world. He was the only Dora Monster with his own grunts. He was killed when Tiger Ranger threw his head down a lava pit causing his body to be destroyed. He is voiced by Yoshio Ochiai (河合 義雄 Ochiai Yoshio).”

Enjoy, my friends. Enjoy.

2014 Tony Vicory.