Thursday, June 28, 2007

United States Anti-Social Forum Canceled Due to Poor Attendance

The U.S. Social Forum--a massive gathering of activists, organizers, and progressive leaders from throughout the nation--is currently underway here in Atlanta. A scheduled parallel gathering of loners, agoraphobes and quiet weirdos who read a lot has been canceled after no one showed.

Some kind of Yahoo group is planned instead.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Jim Stacy’s Lesser-Known Bands

Also for Monday's roast-in-absentia of departing Star Bar co-owner Jim Stacy, I compiled a list of his shorter-lived musical groups.

Jim Stacy performs in several Atlanta bands. The most famous are probably the all-clown punk group Big Top, the Star Wars-themed Grand Moff Tarkin and holiday-favorite Yule Log in which he appears as Shitty Clause.

Here are some of his lesser-known bands:

Un-Pleasance—a punk group whose members dress as characters in Donald Pleasance movies.

Battlestar Helvetica—all their songs are sans serif.

Invasion of the Body Snatch—songs about syphilis.

28 Days Skater—a high-concept band in which Jim plays a rage-infested, roller-skating tampon.

Stigmetal—an Easter-themed band emulating the wounds of Christ’s bleeding ears.

Frosted Flame—his smooth jazz combo.

Émile Dead—an ambitious attempt to combine the influences of the Evil Dead movies with the novels of Émile Zola. In a demonic incantation, Jim sings of killing and possessing the body of an average French family in a refreshingly naturalistic narrative voice.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Mongering Hipster Fears

Last night was to be Jim Stacy’s last as co-host and house heckler for the Star Bar’s Monday night pre-karaoke comedy. I used to do that show every week. Then I cut back to once in awhile. Then in January I turned 36 and decided to quit. It's one thing to be the only guy with neither a tattoo nor a stash of weed, but I was now passed the default age search range on Myspace. Pretty soon I'd be like that creepy guy who sings "Wild Horses" every week. I’m on the backside of 30, time to head to Manuel’s.

But to wish Jim well, I relented for a night. In a brilliant bit of sentiment squashing, Jim failed to show. (Someone took ill.) Still, I’d spent 2 days cranking out sight-specific gags so I did a set. The opening hunk played on the regulars' fears upon the bar's recent sale to the owners of Buckhead's CJ’s Landing.

Here's a transcript:

“The Star Bar’s been sold.”


“It’s gonna be the new CJ’s Landing. I hear they’re gonna tear out the Elvis shrine and put in one to Dave Matthews.”


“Well, it could hasten his death."


"And they’ll be replacing PBR with Natural Light.”


“You’ll have to valet park your ’83 Tercel.
Cock Night will be replaced by Auburn Team Trivia.
Bubbapalooza will become an annual 3-day mortgage-refinancing seminar.
Half the guys with tongue-studs will have fraternity rings in there.”


“And when your tongue stud’s from Jostens… it’s just not the same, is it?”


Date rape will replace rape.
There’ll be 21 different kinds of really fruity martinis—but not one will have a chicken wing.”


“The new Tuesday night DJ will be Ron Hudspeth.”

Dead Silence

“And the comedy will finally be replaced by Texas Hold 'em."


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Vegan's Pickup Now Has RSS Feed

Monday, June 18, 2007

Well Now the Criterion Collection is Just Hoarding

These guys need an intervention fast.

June Releases from the Criterion Collection:

Major Dad--The Complete Series
Definitive Edition Bonus Features:

  • Audio commentary by Dan Quayle and Norman Schwarzkopf
  • Camille Paglia on "Major Dad as Castrated Warrior"
  • TV historian Lars Howell on "Gerald McRaney and Delta Burke: the 2 Sitcom Couple"
  • Tom Shales' blistering reviews read by Jameson Parker
  • Wacky outtakes.

The Cell Phone Videos of Richard Attenborough

  • A series of short cell phone videos of the befuddled, octogenarian director answering his cell phone.

d-Wayne’s Thesis Film

  • Quad Cities Community College (East Moline campus) video production student d-Wayne’s unfinished thesis film footage of skateboarders along the Davenport waterfront.

Hedy Lamarr Nipple Slips
  • Pre-Hayes Code glimpses of the starlet compiled by New Republic film critic Stanley Kauffmann.

A Well-Framed, Beautifully-Lit French Woman Reading the Phone Book
  • An anonymous French Woman reading from the Paris directory.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Krog Street, 1913

A sketch I wrote for the Free Parking show at Dad's Garage. A little too local for some of the crowd.

Krog Street Tunnel Dedication

As chair of the Fulton County Commission committee for Bridges, Tunnels and Confederate Memorials it is my great pleasure to proclaim that on this date of June 3, 1913 the Krog Street Tunnel is complete.


This new tunnel will give Atlanta residents north of the railroad tracks easy access to Grant Park, Oakland Cemetery and the blacksmith shops on Whitehall St.


COMMISSION CHAIR (more subdued)

It will also give residents from the south side easy access north.


But then back south again at the end of the day.


A Constable enters with a wooden pallet.

Sir, we found this wooden pallet leaning upright against the median.

It appears to have some words painted on. “a-fair-jug-well/Leonard’s Ale House/Friday June 9th at 10.”

I believe that’s a local jug band playing Leonard’s this weekend.

What a crude sign. I should think a band would use a professional sign painter and have elegant hand bills printed.

Yes but this Do-It-By-Yourself sensibility certainly grabs your attention.

A pair of shoes tied together at the laces falls on or near the Commissioner.

Oh my. It appears somebody tied a pair of shoes to the railing atop the tunnel.

Did somebody tie these shoes together and throw them up there?

A 1913 Drug Dealer enters.

Yeah, those are mine. What you need?


You name it man, I got it. Cocaine-Phosphate, Opium Fizzies, Alcohol.

The crowd is stunned only at the mention of alcohol.

Sir, how dare you defile the Krog Street Tunnel with such illicit activity?

Hey man, when a city starts to build tunnels ya gotta expect a burgeoning underground economy.

That’s where you’re wrong, sir. This Krog Street Tunnel is a symbol of Atlanta’s progress and civic pride. It shows the collective will of the great citizens of the capital of the New South not to have to wait for the train to pass.

The Constable takes the 1913 Drug Dealer into custody.

And now I invite my fellow commissioners to sign the dedication stone. First Commissioner Key.

A man steps forward. He uses a stick to sign his name in an imagined block of wet cement.

And now Commissioner ACER.

Commissioner ACER takes out a can of spray paint and shakes it before tagging his name.

Next Commissioner No More Bu$hit.

Commissioner No More Bu$hit takes the can of spray paint. He holds up a stencil of his name that he will spray paint over.

The S in my name is a dollar sign.

And finally Commissioner Kilroy. Is Commissioner Kilroy here? … Commissioner Kilroy is not here. That’s unfortunate. But the tunnel is now open. There will be a small reception afterwards at the new Krog Street Soda Fountain. It’s actually down on Estoria. We’ll see you there.



Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Free Popcorn and $1.50 Schlitz

Took a road trip to Athens last night with celebrity bouncer Mason Jenkins to try the comedy night at Flicker Theater and Bar. Mason had a great set and really connected with the college-town crowd.

I also performed.

Flicker is a classic movie-themed bar with a side space for film screenings, acoustic music acts and monthly comedy. The classic movie theme is limited to playing TCM on the bar TV, some movie stills and posters along the walls and books on film on the bookshelf. It gets the idea across but doesn't bludgeon you with your ignorance of Erich von Stroheim's oeuvre. And with no beer over $3.50 you can still just be a cheap drunk.

It reminded me of what I love about Athens: it's arty but unpretentious, intelligent but laid back. And so was the comedy. Pete McBrayer set the tone of thoughtful silliness and a nice mix of acts made for a well-paced night. A simple, fun, interesting comedy show.

Having concentrated on sketches for awhile, looking forward to this show got me back into the rhythm of writing jokes again. Now I just need to remember to edit, rewrite and polish a little more ahead of time.

"Athens, GA. Where every restaurant in town has a dishwasher/bass player with a secret bootleg recording of Mike Mills taking a dump. 'Yeah, man. He totally came in one night.'"

Saturday, June 09, 2007

East Atlanta Elaine Stritch

In Stephen Sondheim’s Company, Elaine Stritch plays a cynical, upper-middle class housewife who sings a bitter toast to the shallow emptiness of upper-middle class life.

What if she were an Atlanta Indie-rock scenestress bored by the shallow emptiness of the Indie-rock scene?

It might look a little something ... like this...

(Turns back to audience, slicks hair back, then turns around again "in character.")

I’d like to propose a toast!

Here’s to the ladies who dunch
Everybody rock.
Lounging in black t-shirts
Or wearing a bunch
Of Goodwill’s finest frocks.
2 PBRs,
3 Bloody Marys
And then a shot.
Helps dull the pain
After a piercing,
Another ring in their twat.
--Does anyone still pierce their twat?
I’ll drink to that.

And here’s to the girls who go grrr!
Don’t they have such cred?
Growling in a punk band
And dying their fur
A violent shade of red.
So in control
And self-assertive.
Won’t take no shit.
They love to sneer
While fellas leer
“Check out my empowered tits.”
Let’s have a Schlitz.

And how ‘bout the girls who just pose,
Here’s a quick shout-out.
Prancing in their boutique
By Bill Hallman clothes
And jaded, rich girl pout.
Spend half the show
At the bar smoking,
Hipper than thou.
Part of the scene
Just to be seen,
Slumming with the lowbrow.
Lets toast them now!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Thursdasys at 10:30

Free Parking

Sketch Comedy @ Dad's Garage

Thursdays After Night School Improv