What a dump!

Ah Los Angeles.  Sprawling suburbs speckled with strip malls and surrounded by traffic-laden, potholed streets. Freeways are parking lots and public transportation is virtually non-existent.  

Drive to a bar.  You’re done. Now turn on your ignition and cut across four lanes of traffic. But be on the lookout for pigs.

Ah LA. La La Land. You love it here because celebrities live and work here.  Their stars line a street while everyone serves them.

Fun. I know. Because you want to be just like them. And you don’t even know them.

Feels real, right?  

Well guess again.  You’re not the star of your own reality TV program, though it feels that way to you.  

But you’ll find that out the hard way, soon enough.  

You think I’m bitter?  Well maybe just a tad.  

They tell me I will love LA in the requisite two years it normally takes.  But why must I wait so long to like this place, I ask.  They never have an answer.  And I am always scolded for being such an obstinate New York asshole.

And again, I think to myself, that that’s not an answer.

I will try, I tell myself, to like LA.  Just to like it. To acknowledge the good things, like the weather.

But the weather is all I can come up with.  Then, as predicted, I go negative. Oy, the intellectual desolation and traffic. That’s pretty much all there is. Isn’t it?

No. That can’t be it. I know there’s more to Los Angeles.  Hmmmm.  If only…

Wait. I know. Randy Newman. I knew there must be something more!

Yeah. I feel better now.

Let’s do lunch!


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Hang it Up!

I just got a call from Jaffe. He called to tell me that he couldn’t talk.


Why? Why do people call just to say they can’t talk? It’s a waste of a call folks. And, if you’re calling someone with a cell phone, they are charged for you to tell them you really don’t want to talk to them!

Insulted and charged for the insult to boot!

Lee said it and it’s true: Only a Jew would call to say he can’t talk.

Moral: Think before you dial!

Posted from my iPhone.


Tucks Medicated Pads are crap!

I don’t even know where to begin on this one. 

Tucks Medicated Pads are so many kinds of wrong I become enraged just thinking about it!
So, I’ll make a list. Here goes:

  1. It’s 50% Witch Hazel –Which I can buy in any store for next to nothing.

  3. Most of the rest of the product is glycerin (for that slick feeling that never seems to go away) and alcohol (again, another product I can buy cheaply).

  5. Tucks contains diazolidinyl urea (yuck!) — a preservative that releases formaldehyde! of all things!

  7. The makers of Tucks, Pfizer, can’t decide if they their product provides hemorrhoidal or vaginal care (both are on the box) and I’m more than a little uncomfortable with that the confusion on this matter.

  9. The box uses the term moist in reference to the pads and I hate the word ‘moist.’

  11.  The pads themselves are, well, too moist (I really hate that word!). Each little pad drips like a leaky faucet.

  13.  Pads come out of the container in clumps, not one at a time, which makes these babies prone to waste. Way to go green Pfizer!

  15. Tucks pads are small and round and don’t make sense for tough jobs — if you know what I mean.

  17. The smallness of the pads make them prone to finger slippage, which is, of course, never pretty.

  19. The container itself is completely and utterly a design blunder by requiring two hands to open — one to unscrew the top and the other to hold the container. I don’t know about you, but I’ve already got a hand in use when I’m getting through sitting on the crapper.


Enough said.



There is no doubt that I’ve been working on this blog obsessively. Go figure.  And not eating for three days has helped me drop a few pounds.

But this kind of wisecracking from the fine people at WordPress gives me a little tsuris:


And what is Sarsparilla? Sounds vaguely anti-Semitic to me.


Funny, you don’t look fluish.

Science ChannelIt’s Sunday night and I’m back in my sister’s Arctic basement watching the We’re-All-Going-To-Die Channel, also known as the Science Channel, and I must say that I feel a whole lot better about, well, everything.

“Pandemic: Bird Flu” is the kind of disaster programming that allows you to enjoy your mortality, from a distance. The show’s disclaimer warns that it’s based on “actual events” that have been dramatized — and, correct me if I’m wrong, but that haven’t actually happened yet. The program’s disclaimer confused yet fascinated me. It seemed to indicate that the program’s producers are working within a TV industry-only space/time continuum. 

They are using the fabric of space itself to increase ratings and audience share of a soon-to-be-dead demographic and they  avoid dealing with the writers strike because it has already been resolved in their dimension!  Genius!

Space/Time ContinuumVery clever indeed.

Also, scaring me with a horrible pandemic for the sake of ratings makes me feel warm and safe, like nothing at all has changed.  Or has it?


New Series: Cut the Pop-cultural Schmaltz

Schmaltz of the Day: Snarkiness — the New Irony

I’m sick of snarky. Why must all criticism in mass media be snarky to be considered effective?

My mother and a long line of critical Jewish mothers before her criticized not to be funny, but because they were right. They didn’t care if you laughed, cried or suffered years of therapy as a result. They were right and they would stop at nothing to let you know you were wrong. Simple. Comedy, something I believe was a Jewish invention, now takes the place of having an opinion. Snarky falls squarely in the middle of all points of view.

Myron Cohen

Let the viewer make up his or her mind, they say. The TV personalities and producers that say that, don’t believe it any more than you or me. The viewer has no brain. That’s precisely why he or she is watching television in the first place.

Jon Stewart

And, that is why they choose to laugh at Bush’s malapropisms instead of doing anything about them. So watch the Daily Show (yes, I love Jon Stewart) and watch Colbert but don’t for a second think that by watching you are doing. Like my mother used to say about anything I happened to be doing at that particular moment:

“Alan, don’t you think you should be doing [fill in the blank]?”


Desperate for Attention Jewish Housewives

This Episode: “Mary Beth and the Nanny Fucker”

I was having a suburban lunch with my sister and the girls when the subject of the Nanny Fucker came up. I was immediately drawn into the conversation. Who wouldn’t be? (Yeah, I’m talking about the guy across the restaurant listening in!)

The tale of the Nanny Fucker is the latest drama to sweep at least two whole towns in Northern Westchester a New York City suburb somewhere above The Bronx.

The Nanny Fucker is notorious for hiring nannies, screwing them, marrying them, and then divorcing them for brand new nannies. Wow! Quite a racket!

The current count is: 3 nannies and 2 wives. He’s currently divorced but his kids are always well cared for, I guess…

Apparently Nanny Number 3 already has some suspicions about her employer-cum-lover-cum-husband-cum-ex-husband. Imagine that.

But the thing is, she expresses her rather understandable insecurity by planting seeds of suspicion with the wives of otherwise faithful husbands. Nanny Number 3 was heard saying this to a gregarious member of the Jewish Housewives:

“I saw your husband at the pizza place all the way in [town name here]. Why was he having lunch so far from where you two live?”

Another interesting fact about the Nanny Fucker is that he prefers Midwestern nannies. Almost every couple with kids in Northern Westchester has a nanny — it’s a particularly affluent area. All of these nannies are from South and Central America. I’ve never seen an American-born nanny in that neighborhood.

So the Nanny Fucker has bagged, and continues to bag, the only American-born nannies to ever invade the otherwise suburban quiet. To Midwestern nannies, Northern Westchester somewhere north of The Bronx must clearly be the nation’s hottest breeding ground for heights of eroticism and babysitting.

As the nanny’s kids say, “Sweet!.”


Good to the last drop! But not in my bathroom!

So what I’m going to tell you actually happened on the 7th day of Hanukkah, December 11th, but I’ve been too depressed to blog. Everyone says that being depressed is actually the best time to blog, but that’s a blog topic for another blog post… Menorah



So back to what I was telling you. You already know, or you should, that I’ve been forced to live with my mother and stepfather due to a horrible moving mishap. And you may not know that while my mother is a lovely, intelligent, intuitive person that looks incredible for her age, she is also insane.

I’m absolutely sure she is obsessive compulsive, to a fault. And she has a Type-A+++ personality. She is overbearing, as any OCD, ADD Jewish Mother should be, and I am the object of her domineering need to obliterate me with her love. (Reading this would kill her!)

The Flying Nun




For more than 2 weeks I had been putting up with the Hovering Jewish Mother (Sally Field’s Flying Nun has nothing on my mom!) when she finally broke the camel’s back with that proverbial straw. I had just returned from taking a tinkle to “my” desk in my sister’s old room when I heard a knock on the door. I really did not want to answer but I did. She opened the door and had a coy, almost coquettish grin on her face. I knew I was in for it but I really had no idea just how far in.

“I really have to teach you how to pee,”

she said with a silly grin on her face. 
As if I hadn’t heard what I clearly had heard, I replied,


She said,

“I had to teach your step-father how to pee correctly too.”

As if that confession would relieve the retched strains of embarrassment I was now feeling. 

I was already broken, like a prisoner of war, and all I could muster was,

“We are not having this discussion.” 

That was it. She had, at the very least, just undone years of therapy. What a waste of time. Of money. And I had nothing left. Yet she went on.

“Alan, this is serious. You’ll ruin the marble floor! Marble is porous!”

I told her I’d be more careful and then, after she left and had closed the door behind her, I searched the floor for my balls.


It could be worse…

I have heard the phrase “it could be worse” too many times to count in the last few months. First, a breakup. Then surgery. Then credit card debt. Then the landlord is suing. Then the IRS wants its money now. Then trying to find a new place to live. Then packing and moving and the ex is not around to help.Then moving day.

Oh my G-d, everything is going smoothly… Too smoothly. And then, the person I’m moving in with — who is subletting the place illegally from the coop’s owner — has not secured the permit necessary for me to move in! My belongings sit on an idle pod (people move with pods now) in the parking lot of a 60’s-era low- to medium-income cooperative housing development that feels like Soviet-era Russia.  

Soviet Apartment Block





Do Not Blab


Security guards surround the moving truck KGB-style, though they’re jabbering in Spanish, not Russian like the KGB or, ironically, like my movers, and just stare at me like I’m the enemy of the people, just daring me to move a single possession out of my pod.



So I have the movers re-load the pod and send the moving van to Long Island, to my mother’s house. Now all of most of my boxed stuff (and this was my step-father’s request) is confined to a 3 by 15 square tile area on the basement floor. The rest of my stuff is in the garage and they’ve already made plans to rid the garage of that small line of boxes by exiling them to the neighbor’s unused garage. So here’s the point: Every single one of the above-mentioned trauma’s have caused my friends and family to tell me “it could be worse…”

Well folks, it can and it does get worse. So do me a favor and don’t tell me it could be worse! Here I sit, in the suburbs and I’m not happy. In fact, I’m downright depressed and probably having a nervous breakdown.

And my biggest fear, at this moment, is that it could be worse.