Posts Tagged ‘Humor’

Bruce and I, over a wee dram the other night, were discussing the latest in bridge peccadilloes. The latest of course being that of the redundantly named NJ Governor Chris Christie, Fort Lee, and the George Washington Bridge. Where it will all go is anyone’s guess, but this being New Jersey, my old home state, we should be prepared for an entertaining slew of theories, accusations, denials, finger-pointing, more denials, and ultimately not being any closer to the truth than when this story first broke.


But in digging through the archaeological rooms of our library, we discovered that bridges have played more rolls in bringing politicians down, or at least to heel, than assisting them in reaching across chasm-like aisles.

Who can forget the lovely Sarah Palin’s Bridge to Nowhere? To where did it lead her? Yes, she is still on the national scene pandering to those old white men who feel they would like to get her in a voting booth for some “fact-finding” or at least go moose hunting with her? Even cable TV tossed her aside, not once, but twice. Maybe she can get a gig as a guest host on Duck Dynasty which despite its questionable politics is quite funny.


Don’t even mention Chappaquidick. Oops, sorry we did. That was a tidy little bit of bridgework from which Teddy never fully recovered. Of course as with all bridges too far, it was littered with denials before the truth was eventually outed. What is it about bridges that lead pols to folly if not ruination?

And what about Congressman Wilbur Mills (R-Arkansas) and the Tidal Basin Scandal featuring stripper Fanne Foxe. Stopped for a traffic violation, old Fanne bolted the car and jumped into the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC to escape. They didn’t even wait to cross the bridge! That finally gave Fanny an amount of exposure she had never dreamed of previously.


History is filled with bridges which rather than do what they were originally constructed to do have achieved just the opposite. Just ask the River Kwai.


But at least, it helped Sir Alec Guinness’s career immensely.

Previously: Good grief, I wish I had a blade so I could cut myself out of this joke. But, Kippy was serious.

And now: So Kippy really was serious about the Sling Blade musical idea. He went on and on about it for days. His ideas continued to careen between just plain silly to out-and-out, world-class, state-of-the-art, carbon fiber stupid. It was that monumental in its outrageousness. In keeping with that theme Kippy wanted to sign on John Mayer and Katy Perry for the music. Yes, this was getting completely out-of-hand in it’s ludicrousness. But then, Polly of all people steps in with an idea how they could do it on the cheap and reach a maximum audience. Polly? Really? Guess she ran out of Sterno.

4239946302_5b79b499d1     2608725369_14a8b377d7 Hey!…it could happen.

Polly, in one of her Sterno-induced, hallucinatory urban stumbles, wandered unknowingly into a cafe where they served caffeine libations exclusively. Being somewhat unaware of the proper protocols, she sat down at another’s table and started merrily hammering away on their unattended Mac. Before long, she was watching soft-core food porn and wondering where she’d be able to score some risotto. Not that she knew what it was, but it looked soft enough for her to eat, given her current dental condition. She was hooked, (yes, we all know how addictive a personality she has), and before long was tabbing back and forth and checking out every conceivable podcast she could find. But that, as all good things do, had to end. The computer’s owner returned and had Polly cruelly and emphatically reintroduced to the sidewalk. But not before she had the idea.

Polly as lucidly as possible shares her idea with us. “Put the friggin’ play on the www. interweb!” OK, so she didn’t fully understand the net, but it was a start. And we all had to admit there was more than a little merit to her idea. First of all, the production costs would be way cheaper. Score one for Polly. Secondly, we didn’t need union talent. Way to go again for Polly. Thirdly, and this is what attracted most of us, probably hardly anyone would see it sparing Kippy (and the rest of us) enormous embarrassment. Kippy loved the idea because he thought he’d be leading the vanguard in a whole new art form. It appears he didn’t know much more about the internet than Polly. We are not without mercy and decided not to tell Kippy he wasn’t the first, or second, or… you get the idea.

3823517383_2eb37048e5 This really shouldn’t be happening!

So, now Kippy is creating his list of investors, or “angels” as he calls them, to invest in this sure-fire theatrical hit. The rest of us all quickly pleaded financial hardships so Kippy could go hit up the unsuspecting yet hopeful “angels.” To quote Dante, “Abandon all hope ye who enter here.” It wasn’t going to be pretty. And that was before his scholarship idea.

Previously on The Bruce: So the mystery of the envelope was solved; the mob was dispersed; Ahmed was back to polishing the same frigging glass; in short all was as it should be. But not for long. Barry came in looking for his weekly order of baksheesh.


And now: For those of you out there who don’t know what baksheesh is, here’s a brief explanation. It’s thought to be Persian in origin and means a tip or some such gratuity. It more recent years, it usually mean bribery and that’s what Barry was looking for. And he was looking right at Ahmed and that damned glass. Ahmed was doing his best not to notice Barry which in itself would be an incredible feat to pull off. Barry is, how can you say this diplomatically, (something I’m not really known for), unusual looking. If while under the influence of any number of mind-altering substances, Ovaltine included, one could describe him as the illegitimate love child of a seven foot tall Jeff Goldblum, Sally Struthers, and A-Rod. If not under that kind of influence, that description is still pretty accurate, but nothing would explain the red hair. Don’t ask, but it ain’t my family!

Barry wanted his money, now. Ahmed feigning concern over his falafel grill, was still trying to ignore Barry. With Barry’s shadow looming ever larger, Ahmed was losing his battle. Finally, he gave in, turned and promptly dropped the glass he had been so dutifully polishing for probably 6 years. Well, all good things must end and a new glass started, right? And as far as ending goes, Barry was looking to end Ahmed right then and there. What were we into now?

“Ahmed, you haven’t been behaving. Why haven’t you been returning my calls?”, Barry wanted to know as if he didn’t know already. Barry knew and Ahmed knew he knew and couldn’t stall him any longer. For too many years, Ahmed had been paying Barry off and while I knew it was happening, I didn’t really know why. That was about to change. Dumb-ass me, I never saw the connection. Yeah, Fog Calamari couldn’t figure out some marriages were arranged and others, well, they were ARRANGED if you catch my drift. Only this one involved my half (and half-wit) sister, Polly. Yeah, the same name as our mother. Polly, my Sterno-huffing mother, gave birth to my sister fathered by cheating on Pops with some Electrolux salesman. Yeah, it sucked and in more ways than one. During one of her huffed-up binges, she decided to name her new daughter Polly as if it was the cutest thing in the world. In the family, daughter Polly was called Po as if we were prescient about her life to come. Hell, all one had to do to suss that out was to look at her mother. I didn’t learn this until many years later after I’d been calling Ahmed “Uncle” for the whole time. Now it was time for Ahmed to say “Uncle.” Karma, man.


For a not small amount, Ahmed, who was later revealed as the Electrolux schmuck and father to Po, paid Barry to marry her. What Ahmed didn’t count on was Barry expecting a regular payroll check for his efforts. In Barry’s favor, he was kind to Po, but not particularly loving or faithful, but then neither was Po to him. Ah, love, right? Barry’s latest visit was due to Ahmed being more than a little late in his continuous dowry. Who knows how long Barry’s kindness would last without his stipend? This had to end now or sooner. If Barry “took care” of Ahmed, I’d never have a falafel again. I had to get involved.


Posted: January 23, 2013 in Food, Life
Tags: ,

It was a miserable night. It was rainy, damp, cold – a real skank of an evening. In short, a typical Keansburg, NJ kind of night. I loved it.

2250173012_8c968d7918 Keansburg. Yeah.

I was sitting in my car, watching the wipers describe lazy arcs across the windshield, waiting for my brother to finish whatever he started in that ramshackle, sorry little excuse for a house. Drugs? Women? Who knows? He’s that kind of guy and I’m waiting for him. Guess that makes me another kind of guy. Right?

If you don’t know me, let me introduce myself. I’m Fog Calamari. Yeah, yeah, make your jokes now. I’ve heard them all. Thanks to the illustriously hard-working people at the INS, my name was butchered into what it is today. Not that the original was any better, but at least it wasn’t so accurately descriptive.

The hack at the immigration office couldn’t get over our real family name of Occtavia, so he wanted to list it as Octopus. Grandpops wasn’t having any of that, thank god. But his language skills weren’t that good and he thought he had to at least follow the direction those jamokes set out upon. So, translating octopus became Calamari. Go figure.

Fog – well that’s another story. Being a redhead as is most of my family, it was originally Fuego for fire. But being blessed as much of my family is with another affliction, flatulence, it became appropriately but not happily, Fog. Thanks a lot Mom and Dad, love you too. Yeah, I got issues. Who doesn’t?

Anyway and eventually, my do-not-much-of-anything brother comes out of the mystery house and decides he’ll probably show up for work at the dollar store. You got to understand this is a step up for him, a promotion. Previously, he worked at the 69 cents store. What’s that line about a rising tide raising all boats? Here it is in real life. I drop him off and decide to stop in at my favorite falafel bar, O’Shea’s. It takes a little longer than usual to get there because the old Yugo, painted in Slovakian Racing Beige, only wanted to make left turns today. Somedays it’s left, other days only right. And that’s when by the grace of some dark-humored deity it starts.

After a Magellan-like plan to get there, I arrive. Ahmed O’Shea has the best falafel in town, Let me correct that – he has the only falafel in town unless you count the combination gas station/sushi/ falafel/ and dry cleaning establishment down on Central. How he came to open this dubious venture is best left to another time, but it did involve bearer bonds, zoo animals, and grey market Gummi (Trademark!) Bears. You figure it out. I’m not saying anything else on this subject.

Walking into O’Shea’s is like entering some New Age candle shop. Besides the Yin and Yang decor, the beaded curtains covering only electrical outlets, it’s the over-powering scent of cilantro that grabs your attention. That and the mangy Labradoodle attack dog by the front door. Say what you will, the joint has ambiance. And cheap beer. Oh, and did I mention the falafel?

Ahmed is behind the bar polishing, I swear, the same damn glass he’s been doing for years. It must have been very dirty. He looks up, well, raises his eyebrows at me and acknowledges my presence, “Fog.”

“Ahmed.” No need for words between us. Hell, he doesn’t know much more English than that anyway. He nods to a booth on the far wall. I look over. Damn, if it isn’t…


I just can’t stand to read the news anymore. Somehow or another, I’m terrified that the media will find out about my misdemeanors, felonies, and general poor behavior and have a field day with it. When one who is so famous and yet shuns the media spotlight, one lives in constant dread of being found out. One does. Really.

So, while waiting in the ne plus ultra waiting room of some mid-America airport, I happened upon the worst purveyor of such treacle, nay, trash – USA Today. While the paper itself has shrunk in on itself in size, it still harbors ambitions, however misplaced, of being a real newspaper. But one read of it will inform you otherwise. Unless you are entertained by the state-by-state snippets in the back of this publication passing for news, everything reeks of low-level sensationalism. Such is the fodder of the masses.

But read it I did for I am always in dread as mentioned before of being found out. Happily, there was no mention of my name or any of the aliases for which I’ve been known. Yet, I fear it is only a matter of time before things not perpetrated by me are soon ascribed to same. So it is with that in mind, I wish to inform all dear readers of the following:

I did not get Kate (or Pippa) Middleton pregnant. While an enticing proposition, I am innocent.


I did not get anyone elected. For that, one would have to vote. I categorically did not. Nor am I responsible for the “fiscal cliff”. That’s just hearsay.

I did not bench Mark Sanchez – whoever he is.

I'm just gonna dance right over there, and tackle your ass...

I have no friends with benefits. But they are grateful for universal healthcare.

I have never seen a trilogy of anything nor will I. I do have some pride left after all.

That is not me in those nude photographs, but I wish it was. Whoever it was was having a good time and looked really good.

I am not the love child of Dr. Phil and Roseann Barr. The resemblance, while remarkable, is accidental and unfortunate.


I did not, have not, will not leak any information to any intelligence gathering organization ever…unless a substantial advance is provided. And even then, I reserve the right of exaggeration as a negotiating tool.

I will never have a phone smarter than me.

I did see the movie ABBA, but I don’t talk anymore with the people who took me there. No use in encouraging them further.

I have never been caught in a compromising situation with Lindsay Lohan. Yet.

I have never made an illegal campaign contribution to a candidate who lost.

I have never cheated on a test unless you count paternity tests.

I do not believe in digital technology without latex gloves.


That’s about it. I could of course claim innocence for so much more and maybe some of that would be true, but it’s getting late and there are people outside with cameras and lights. What in hell do you think THAT’S all about?

When Bruce and I were little kids in separate schools, divided by geography, years, and parents who wouldn’t talk with each other (How could they? They didn’t even know each other!), we indulged in the kind of mindless entertainment all young boys do. No, not the kind that’ll make you go blind. The kind that kills brain cells without artificial additives. Stupid stuff. The kind of stuff mindless people will do given the opportunity to vent their prepubescent rage. Or at least we’d like to think we did.

Mindless thing #1. Let’s hang “Tommy” from the bridge. Drivers will see, freak-out, cause multi-vehicle collisions and hilarity will ensue. We didn’t really hang “Tommy”, our version of an early crash test dummy, so much as take his clothes, sew up the sleeves and pants legs, stuff them with paper and then hung this paperboy from the bridge. Nobody saw “Tommy”. No collisions, but in truth, we thought it was the funniest thing ever. See, mindless.

Not Tommy! (

Mindless thing# 2. Impersonating the law. This usually happened under two conditions: lust or drunkenness. Sometimes those two walked hand-in-hand. Picture chasing in our car, flashing the red-covered driving lights, two nubile young women in their car, exhorting them to pull over.The NYW, seeing the flashing red lights on our VW Beetle (!), thought they were being pulled over by the law. Obviously they weren’t too bright if they thoughts cops drove VWs! Upon seeing it was two young dudes in heat, they split as quickly as they could. We did warn you this was mindless. Grateful that they did not report us to the real law, we followed suit and split, but in a different direction.

What we thought we looked like. (

Mindless #3. Being the really good friend by going out with hot girl’s not-so-hot friend in order for your friend to take out Miss Pretty. Yeah, that’s what friends are for. Nothing will contribute to reprobate behavior and quick inebriation as taking one for the team. What team? I don’t have a number on my shirt! And I’m certainly not going to make it to first base with this girl either! But, friendship prevails and a good time was had by two of the four people involved. Yeah, mindless.

The feeling was mutual! (

Mindless #4. This is easy. See our previous post, Blogging for Idiots, 101. Yeah, mindless, very mindless.

Ahh, the wonderful and ubiquitous internet. It has taken away the mortar from the bricks, replaced relationships with tweets, and taken porn out of seedy back room stores and put it smack dab (sorry, poor choice of words) into the home. It has also provided an outlet for all sorts of people whose work, thoughts, music, art, whatever, should never be on display. Anywhere! Anytime! But noooooo,  democratically (small D) it’s for everyone.

We have scoured (again, poor choice of words; the internet can never be cleaned) the internet for art. And truthfully, we were surprised. It was much worse than we thought. A candidate with an etch-a-sketch can do better. Don’t read anything into that as a political statement. We think it’s just as funny as a President slow-jamming the news. That’s the problem with media. Everything is immediate. In earlier times, if Ben Franklin farted, it wasn’t news for 3-4 weeks. By then the air had certainly cleared – both literally and figuratively. But we digress.

Here are some of the examples we found. We have some that we feel we can explain, others defy explanation. Perhaps you can help us.

Truer words were never spoken. We wish we came up with this first. It explains Thomas Kinkade, may he rest in peace.

The Mona Astronaut? Move on, this is not the art you’re looking for.

This is not a portrait of the Two Bruces. Rather it’s a photoshop representation of our two collective sets of parents. It’s a wonder they didn’t drown us at birth!

This hangs on the refrigerator door at Bruce’s house. He is so proud!

Finally, someone had the guts to start censoring this crap. The rumor is that it’s the same “art” that’s on Bruce’s fridge door.

We’re not certain. If it was a different vegetable, we’d be inclined to say it’s our new turn(ip) table for playing the Wiggles.


And finally…

Nobody doesn’t like Jello! Right? Right?

See? Anything can be “art.” Like in politics, say it loud enough, long enough, and with a enough of conviction and you too will have followers willing to drink your “kool-aid.” It’s worked before, it’ll work again.

People’s behavior never ceases to amaze us. Of course, our behavior is perfect and beyond reproach which gives us the right to comment on theirs and perhaps even yours. Glass houses? Feh!  So, we’re going to muse a little about what you’ve been up to. Not you literally, although you might recognize some abhorrent behavior you’re guilty of, but that of people who you would never consider as friends.

Why in hell do people have vanity license plates? Is it because they want to display what they believe is their cleverness? Doubtful – the plates seldom are clever. Sometimes they approach almost cute, but who needs cute? Is it to put one over on the DMV? Oh, come on now! That’s like shooting fish in a barrel or just going for the low-hanging fruit on a terminally diseased fruit tree. The DMV will never be known for hiring the next Stephen Hawking. The literacy rate there explains why Denny’s is so popular. They can go in, not be able to read a menu, but just point to their food selection. Low hanging fruit indeed!

Of those who cherish the low creativity of license plates prose, the best we can determine is that they were sent to high priced boarding schools,  not hugged enough as children, never got the puppy they wanted, and crave all the undeserved attention they can get. But it is, like puns, the bottom rung of creativity and cheap. Pay your extra fee once a year and the laughs ensue all year long. Come on now, again!

Of course, these enlightened individuals don’t realize how identifiable they’ve become. Cops will notice that plate pretty damn fast. So will your spouse if she sees your car at the Pussycat Lounge. We know why you’re there, but try explaining it to your significant other. She is not going to buy it. You had to be cute with the license plate. Smart move buddy!

Why would you ever answer an ad on Craig’s List? Oh, looking for tools? Riiight – let’s face it, the only tool here is you. Hold it… why are you even looking at Craig’s List? Are you looking for the address of the Pussycat Lounge? Some people never learn!

Why in hell do people watch shows like “American Idol”? To feel superior? Low hanging fruit again, friend! There’s plenty of intellectually and artistically challenged people in the political arena. You probably vote for them too! Now we know who watches that damnable show and its’ demon spawn! Want to know why this country is falling behind in literacy rates? No, no, you don’t have to answer that. The fact that you are reading this is an indication of your towering intellect and impeccable good taste.

See? This is what we’re talking about. Excuse me, is that your car with the GR8LVR license plate? Oh, come on now! Did you really do that?! We’re taking you off our list right now!

Mustangs by Maybelline.

Posted: March 23, 2012 in Cars, Humor

OK, we know a lot of us like our cars a lot. Some even love them. There are probably innumerable studies on the phenomenon but it’s a car damn it! Get over it.

(Courtesy Autoshopper)

It starts out harmlessly enough. You get a new car and you name it. Oh, that’s harmless and cute you think. If you would believe this then you would be so wrong that immediate help should be found now, if not sooner. Because, you see, you’ve just taken your first step on the very slippery slope of auto-erotic personification disorder or AEPO.

Medical societies will not discuss this, but they realize is a genuine affliction. All too often the physicians themselves suffer from this and like any other junkie, refuse to admit they have a problem. “It’s just a car.” they tell their family, By then it’s too late. The truth of the matter is that this won’t get the attention it requires, much less a foundation or a telethon, until the insurance companies recognize it exists. Don’t expect that to happen. Have you seen the cars THEY drive? It’s an invisible epidemic and one that Detroit hopes goes on forever.

AEPO is characterized by similar and increasingly alarming modes of behavior. Naming the car is the first step. It then increases invisibly and insidiously. Keeping one’s car fastidiously clean is a definite symptom. Talking to it while driving and you may as well check yourself into the foam room at your neighborhood asylum.

There are other manifestations. Some people suffer from seasonal AEPO or S-AEPO. This is usually characterized by the attachment of bows or wreaths to the front of cars around the holidays. It seems to harmlessly abate after the first of the new year, but it is chronic and will return. Even for this, help is necessary. Don’t even overlook the innocuous air fresheners your loved ones use. This is a small but serious cry for help as well.

Added-on adornments such as chrome exhaust tips; decals; horns/antlers (again S-AEPO); roof flags displaying your team preference (grow up already!) are an outward indication of arrested development AEPO or AD-AEPO. So are fat racing stripes as typically seen on street level Mustangs. Possibly the worst manifestation of this, if not the most egregious in bad taste, is the pair of plastic eye-lashes attached to the offending cars headlights. Cute? Think again.

(Kugli) Really? Really?!

Maybelline does not do cars and neither should you! Leave it to the pros like Yugo or Edsel. As this is a somewhat newly diagnosed disorder, there are likely more but undiagnosed variations on this. Keep up your subscription to the New England Journal of Wack-Jobs for updates.

There are treatments for AEPO; they’re not cheap, can be tremendously upsetting to your status quo, and they involve some heavy-duty behavior modification. Often times, this treatment will lead to being socially outcast by those you believed were friends. Hah! You will be forced to, metaphorically and sometimes for real, rub elbows with those who at one time you thought were beneath you. Are you ready because if you’re not, don’t waste our time. We’re only trying to help you.

All treatment begins by admitting there is a problem. This is not a fuzzy-wuzzy, touchy-feely treatment; nor is it a “let’s work through this” 12 step program. This is the real thing – cold as hell turkey.  So, you’ve gotten in front of a mirror and confronted yourself. You can now openly admit you’re screwed up. You’re ready to take the first step.

The first step is harsh matched only in severity by the second step. The first step is to get rid of your car. That’s right – lose it! The sooner you relieve yourself of the offending entity, the sooner you start on the long rough road to recovery. You may slip back and rent or borrow a car for that imagined fix of “freedom”. It happens, don’t distress, Stay strong because the next step is the hardest.

The second step is public transportation. Inconvenient? Possibly but think of the alternatives. We admit there may be times one has to sit near an undesirable passenger, but mercy and grace should be shown. Why? This is the dirty little secret: everyone of them, without exception is recovering from AEPO – just like you!

Unlike the spam filter on our computers, some mail seems to keep getting through. Specifically those relentless mailings from AARP. There is no way the Post Office can be going broke based on just the number of these mailings. Consider what Lillian Vernon sends out! So, OK, we get it. We’re going to get old and die. Yeah, thanks for the constant reminders. But we ain’t there yet.

We are both still at that stage of life where we can, we think, be productive if not contentious contributors to society. Yes, we know this is how Rome’s downfall started but don’t lay that at our doorstep, we didn’t touch it! As long as these things don’t require heavy lifting or moving, we can do a fairly good imitation of 30-somethings. Well, maybe 40-somethings. And we do support “adults” (in the chronological sense) being involved in society, jury duty being excluded. Hey, you gotta draw the line somewhere.

While on lunch one day, still being productive (!), we noticed a Homeland Security person. Now after 9/11 and being “adults”, we are far more in touch with our mortality and security and what remains of it. It must be protected! Our concept of a Homeland Security agent is some over-muscled, steroid-induced rage-aholic just waiting to detain, question enthusiastically, and ultimately dispatch the “enemy.” That concept was totally and irretrievably smashed today.

Now this is what we’re talking about! (Courtesy MotiFakes)

This Homeland Security agent was an example of what we fear becoming: a post-Viagra/Cialis using, Depends-buying, golf shirt wearing, Clapper-user, shuffling old man. How do we know he was old? Aww, c.mon! How do we know he worked for the Homeland Security Agency?  Why his golf shirt had the Homeland Security logo on it! In the city, one can understand seeing pretty much anything on the streets and on clothing: music group logos, animals, fast-food slogans, snotty comments on one’s marital status, etc. But Homeland Security? Really? Is there a Homeland Security Tourist Shop where one can buy Homeland Security souvenirs? Are there signed photographs of John Ashcroft and George Bush? How about posters proclaiming any numbers of slogans supporting the effort as in World War II? “Loose tweets sink…” Needs work.

This man, this Homeland Security agent, while probably quite nice to his wife and grandchildren, was more likely wondering whether he could get to a Denny’s-like restaurant, where you point to the pictures of the food of your choice, in time for the early-bird special. And then to bed.

Yes, since 9/11, our fear level has not gone down. We’re more worried. Not that we’ll be attacked again, but that we’ll miss the early bird special.