Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Snappy Answers to Questions of Douchebaggery

I'm generally much nicer to random strangers than I am to even my closest friends. Maybe that seems like a character flaw to you, but I'm sure it's one of my strongest traits.

I'm doing my part to make the world go 'round, which is a tougher role than always playing the Mr. Nice Guy pseudo-shrink confidant to a select group of people whose tiresome problems always seem to overrun your life. You're bogged down in a tapestry of personal histories, but I'm living out some Smile Begets a Smile/Pay It Forward faux hippie shit that will no doubt save the city from ruin. No doubt.

I like random interaction; interconnectivity. I collect new friends on the city's subways and buses. Should you need directions, I'll Mapquestingly guide you from the spot you're standing to the door of your destination (provided I know the way, which is altogether unlikely, and provided that place has a door, which I guess is likely). Homeless people love my loose change and charming demeanor, and street musicians and performers benefit from my ability to be easily impressed and lack of anywhere else to be.

Basically, if you're a random person on the street, and you want someone with whom to converse, I'll play your leading man (or leading lady, though that requires a cash donation of at least 75 cents). Lately, however, I've been extremely annoyed by two separate groups of people that hang out on Bleecker Street near my apartment, and I've started lashing out against both groups this week.

The first are Random Cigarette Bummers. Unless I'm down to my last couple, I'm usually fine parting with a cigarette for your temporal enjoyment. I understand there are some legit people out there who simply run out and want just one before buying a new pack, but at $7.50 a pack, you've got some balls to be mooching on a full-time basis. And now I'm getting a little ornery.

Listen, fuckfaces, just because I'm the schmuck that's still buying cigarettes doesn't give you the right to ask for my things. So twice this week I've had this exchange in front of my apartment:

"Hey, do you have an extra cigarette I can bum?"
"Nah, sorry. Oh, you know what, I heard you can actually buy them right in this store here. This one right here."
"Um, okay, thanks anyway."
"Ask if you can bum from them first..."

Reactions? Both times it was as if I told that person to fuck themselves with a dildo the size of Anderson Cooper. Folks, a word of advice: If you're going to quit smoking, then quit smoking. Next time you ask me for a cigarette I'm countering with, "Oh shit, I quit carrying around money last week, can you spare me a dollar?" They got a name for that...It's called a bum, Jules.

The second group consists of those dudes on Bleecker and MacDougal that insist on handing me fliers for the seemingly endless parade of amateur comedy shows. Allright, I get it, you look like Dave Chapelle, you must be funny. But, no, I'm not coming to your show just so I can buy two drinks, pay a cover and beg someone to repeatedly jab my testicles with a sewing needle. So the other day I decided to fight back against these humor guerillas:

"Hey hey, check out our comedy show tonight, right down the street, 10 funny comedians and strong drinks, check it out, check it out."
"Is the show based on looks?"
"What's that mean?"
"I'm asking if it's a looks-based show. If so, I bet it'd be real funny."
"Why you gotta be such a dick, man?"
"Oh, c'mon, you're a fucking comedian, you can't take that shit?"
"That's fucking rude."
"Have a good show tonight. I'd change my shirt before going on stage, that one looks ridiculous on you."
"Fuck you!"

I've lost all respect for the flier comedians. I mean, you can't take a little innocent rogering in jest from a dipshit like me? Now instead, I'm gonna pepper you and your friends with jabs every time I pass until either I get tired of it or one of you takes a swing at me.

Now I'm just waiting for the day one of those fucks tries to bum a smoke off of me. I better start thinking of witty retorts now.

Slack Link of the Day: Good fucking lord, talk about validating the age-old Jewish stereotypes...here we see The Perils of Using JDate.

Slack Video of the Day: I went out to Lawn Gisland last night for a dinner with the family, where we discussed the old days of boxing. We couldn't come up with which pugilist challenged Rocky Marciano's 49-0 record as a heavyweight, and it turned out to be Larry Holmes. Most people 40 and older remember Holmes as a long-time heavyweight champion, mostly beating up losers, but a champion nonetheless. I remember Holmes like this, one of my favorite videos of all-time.

Slack Song of the Day: Another eclectic and questionable mix from StreamStash -- Award Tour (Tribe), The Sheik of Araby (Django Reinhardt), Sussudio & Against All Odds (Phil Collins), Key To The Highway (Derek & The Dominos), The W.S. Wolcott Medicine Show (The Band), and everyone's favorite MTV video, November Rain (GnR).


At 11:32 AM, Blogger Alex Fritz said...

Ace, man, you seem stressed. Chill, duder. Eat a peach.

(I'm just kidding. Fuck everybody. Fucking assholes.)

(Except the Jamicans. They've been through enough, you know? With their crappy bobsled team and all.)

At 12:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only a JEW would demand his money back.

At 12:19 PM, Blogger Trix said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 12:20 PM, Blogger DannyNoonan said...

For me it's these assholes with clipboards asking if I have "a minute for the environment." I thought I would get away from them when I left uberliberal Madison, WI for slightly less liberal Milwaukee, WI. Not the case. They're here too. My last conversation went like this:

Hippie with clipboard: Do you have a minute for the envirnment?
Me: Yes, (glancing at watch)and I'd like to do the talking. Did you know that organizations like greenpeace are proactively causing the deaths of millions of people a year by spreading lies about genetically altered crops to leaders in third world countries? Through the efforts of Norman Borlong and others, we have engineered strains of wheat and rice that can grow and produce higher yeilds in the most harsh and arrid climates where people are literally starving. But greenpeace and other (finger quotes) environmental groups have convinced leaders in Zambia and other African countries that this kind of wheat is poisonous. You know what else, environmentalism isn't free. You can't just assume that every percieved environmental problem should be dealt with immediately regardless of cost. If you tell people in the third world to limit industry, people die. And do you recycle plastic bottles? Do you know how much energy it takes to recycle a bottle? Do you know how much pollution it causes versus making one from scratch? Have you ever wondered why you see bums collecting cans but you don't see them collecting bottles (looking at watch) okay, that was a minute. Thanks for your time.

When I came back the other way they didn't even ask me if I had another minute for the environment.

At 12:20 PM, Blogger Trix said...

That's why I started to smoke menthols...no one wants to bum them off of me.

At 12:40 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

No stress, Al, no stress...just taking some aggression out on two groups of people that should or should not contract the bubonic plague immediately. Maybe they can get it from Jeff Weaver?

Noonan, two impressive rants in the span of a week...since your borther dropped off the face of the earth I think you've proven who the better Noonan clearly is.

The last time I got cornered by the Greenpeace folk I gave them the exact same line that Mike Adamle used on me at the 2000 Alamo Bowl -- "Heyyy, I gotta go meet some friends" -- and walked right by them. I'm all for the environment, but I had some internet porn to catch after a long day of work.

Menthols? Eeesh. Tat might be the very definition of cutting off one's nose to spite one's face. I'd rather smoke finely chopped whitefish bits wrapped in wax paper and smothered in turds.

At 1:03 PM, Blogger Jason said...

What a great post. It sounds mean to say, but I hope you yell at someone again soon.

At 3:13 PM, Blogger DannyNoonan said...

I wouldn't say I'm the better Noonan. I've barely posted anything on my blog in months.

Also, I just came accross your "Homeless Strategies" blog. It is a truly awesome idea. I hope you continue to update it.

Critiquing homeless people's begging strategies and personas was a favorite hobby of mine in law school. Our campus is super bum-friendly and just wacked out in general so we had some good characters. Like Scanner Dan:
and Steam Tunnel Bob:

I always thought I could make a million dollars if I designed a deck of cards like that stupid Iraqi deck, but instead of having Saddam's toadies on the cards it would have a different local bum on each card. People would buy these cards like crazy. College kids play lots of card games.

Anyway, don't give up on your Homeless Strategies bog Ace.

At 4:08 PM, Anonymous Johnny6 said...

That's a great encounter DN, but I'm pretty sure that last part is not true. Recycling a plastic bottle uses almost 100% less energy than making one from scratch. I heard that on NPR last week, thats why i happen to know that. And why dont bums collect bottles? They get 5 cents either way.

At 4:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Grassroots recycling entrepreneurs ("bum" is a pretty harsh term, no? )don't collect bottles because of volume. You can get a lot more cans in a trash bag at five cents each versus the same five cents for the much larger empty bottles.

At 4:36 PM, Blogger DannyNoonan said...

Jeebus Johnny and anonymous. I was just messing with the green peace guy. But actually, you don't get five cents for plastic bottles unless it is subsidized by the state. And the state in which this happened doesn't do that. It does cost more money and energy to recycle plastic, paper and basically anything besides aluminium than it does to make it from scratch. Plastic is getting there, but as far as I know it is still only recycled because of hippie doom-saying. Paper is a long way off. It's also really good for the environment to use lots of non-recycled paper because that increases demand for it and in turn leads paper producers to plant more trees. And trees have the added benefit of, like, being trees. I just read that like last week too. I suppose the jury is still out on all this stuff. In sum: I was just messing with a hippie.

At 5:10 PM, Anonymous thwarted said...

Amateur comedians are the new Falun Dafas. Urgh.

At 5:13 PM, Blogger Boski93 said...

Is Larry Holmes still alive? I thought he died of a speech impediment when he tried to say chrysanthemum back in 1996. If not hooray for Scranton's finest.

Oh, I still remember the night be beat the living bejebus out of Marvis Frazier.

At 5:14 PM, Anonymous Allen Khodabash said...

Beggar: "Spare change?"

Sensible New Yorker: "No thanks! I'm good."

God I miss Giuliani.

At 5:25 PM, Blogger dhodge said...

On my recent visit to Rocky Mtn. Nat'l Park, I noticed they were selling stationary in the gift shop made from recycled elephant poo. I shit you not. The only thing more surprising than people making paper products out of elephant shit is the fact that they somehow thought that this was a good marketing strategy. I think the company or product line was called elephantpoo or something like that.

At 5:37 PM, Blogger Claven said...

A.) I don't think using Anderson Cooper as a dildo would be very difficult...for anyone. His mobile-uplink production was in MY FUCKING WAY on my run out to Fort Point a few weeks back. He was interviewing Jerry Brown with a view of the Golden Gate Bridge in the background. He looked like an elementary school kid with gray hair interviewing his grandfather.

B.) My preferred method of dealing with the ubiquitous street corner crunchy college chicks here in California..."thanks, I spent my early 20s working as an environmental lobbyist." This is actually true. After that you just ask them what they are doing after work. Guaranteed 21 year-old poontang. Why argue when you can get laid?

At 5:49 PM, Blogger Jason Mulgrew said...

Well, look at my little boys, all grows up - Slack gets a shout on Gawker.

You're big time now, Ace. Welcome to the club and remember, always wear a condom. Because you're not even going to be able to keep track of the women.

At 6:03 PM, Blogger PaulNoonan said...

Jeez, cut me some Slack. Time is not on my side right now. I can't even spare 15 seconds to dress down some hippy douchebag.

At 7:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

dannynoonan -

hate to point out another flaw in your otherwise inspired rant, but the dude's name is borlaug, not borlong.

no hard feelings, though. the only reason i know this is because i once had a class in a building named after borlaug on the st. paul campus of the university of minnesota, which, i'm sure, is where 95% of those greenpeace/uspirg hippies come from. i only offer this information to make your next use of that rant all the more effective.

At 8:01 PM, Blogger PaulNoonan said...

I was once walking in Wicker Park wearing one of my University of Wisconsin T-Shirts. We passed by two bums hitting up everyone for "a quarter." As I passed, one bum said to the other:

"Leave that guy alone, he's from Wisconsin."

I'm still not entirely sure how to take that.

At 9:58 PM, Blogger Christopher said...

Frankly, you almost lost me at the thought of Anderson Cooper near my ass, though this did remind me of the cigarette beggars in Albuquerque where I used to live. The thing is, you can always tell when they're about to ask you to bum a cigarette, so the best way to counter them is to say, before they get out their begging, "Hey man, can I bum a cigarette?" It is guaranteed to confuse the fuck out of them.

At 10:07 PM, Blogger Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

I'd hate to be the man who crosses your path and asks you to bum a smoke, save a tree, AND come to his shitty comedy performance.

At 10:30 PM, Blogger John Howard said...

Seven fifty? Holy shit, why on earth would anyone still smoke at that price? I've been addicted to nicotine, and it's pretty powerful stuff, but my cheapness would have overcome my addiction long before I ever paid seven fucking fifty for a pack of cigarettes. If you're paying that, and someone asks to bum one, you should punch them in the face.

At 9:22 AM, Blogger DannyNoonan said...

Oops. That was a typo. Lousey fingers.

At 10:42 AM, Anonymous BubblyDancer said...

First day reading ur blog, and it has brightened up my work day!!

Bumming smokes is not a good thing to do to a smoker, if you can afford to stand around, not work and bum smokes all day, you can totally afford to buy your own!!!

The cheek of society today!


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