Thursday, March 31, 2011

Chain Restaurants Simplified

After seeing a commercial for the Tilted Kilt that used the Dropkick Murphy's "Shipping Up To Boston" yesterday

The bartender (walking past me and grumbling): More stupid suburban bullshit.

Me: I went to the Tilted Kilt with Fish once. It's just a plaid Hooters.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Amber And Heather Ruin All Your Fantasies

H-Town: i like your fake About Me section
i laughed at the secret sex dungeon part
out loud
a chortle

me: some day, heather. some day...

H-town: we all have dreams
background music swells up
well-choreographed song and dance routine happens

me: it has a round bed in it and shackles on the wall

H-town: does the bed spin?

me: well it does now

Heather: hahaha
you know, speaking of interesting rooms, i remember seeing a Cribs episode where they went through Tommy Lee's house
besides being afraid that there'd be herpes EVERYWHERE, i was a fan of his shower set up

me: does he have a separate bed for his wang to sleep on?

H-town: you could see the shower from his bed
so whatever ladies he had over, you could see a little of them in the shower
trashy, but I liked it

me: oh i like that too, great idea

H-town: it wasn't totally clear glass
so now you have a spinning bed and a nearby see-thru shower
he also had a sex swing in his bedroom
not surprising

me: i don't really get those, but maybe that's because i've never really seen one live

H-town: yeah, same here
they look dangerous
i'd most certainly end up seriously injuring myself

me: pretty sure i'd forget all about the sex if i had a swing though. i'd be like WHEEE!!!!!

H-town: hahaha
SEX? who cares!
no, not with that
use your hands!

me: wind it up so i can spin! and then i throw up on everything. party's over

H-town: haha

me: off to the visible shower

H-town: less exciting now

me: sex dungeons can be perilous for all the wrong reasons sometimes

What's All This Then?

After more than six years of the same old same old, I've made some changes/upgrades to Bizzybiz (obviously) that I've been meaning to do for a long time. For one thing, I have now gone through all the archives and added labels to all the posts, so now if you want to see everything I've ever written about spiders all at once (my research is extensive after all, everything you need to know is here somewhere) you just need to click on the "spiders" label.

I've also added some tabs at the top, an About Me page that is filled with lies, and a page of links to things that I often read when I'm not writing on Bizzybiz or checking the corners of the room and the ceiling for spiders, as well as the websites for the podcasts I frequently mention. That same page also has a link to my Twitter account, so if you want you can follow me and find out if I am as clever when I don't have infinite space to go on and on and on about things (probably not).

I am still working on tweaking the template, so if you have any suggestions or complaints like "What the fuck? I can't even read this!" let me know and I'll do my best to fix it. I also intend to add more links on the Linkylinks page - those were just the things I thought of off the top of my head last night when I was working on this - so check back for more and send me your suggestions.

Bizzybiz 2.0 - now with more ridiculousness.

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Relative Value of Los Angeles

I'm confused about how Battle: Los Angeles made it to number one at the box office. Now in all fairness, I haven't actually seen the movie nor do I have any plans to see it because it looks pretty stupid. But based on the trailers for it, I'm pretty sure it's just a remake of Independence Day, and Independence Day fucking sucked. Right? Aliens are invading our planet to get our resources and are systematically wiping us out. That's the same plot as Independence Day, isn't it? I've already seen Battle: Los Angeles then and it isn't any good.

Now, granted, it's possible that maybe they've improved on Independence Day. Certainly there was a ton of room for improvement: Bill Pullman is possibly the least convincing person to ever play the President (seriously, once you've played Lone Star in Spaceballs, you've pretty much typecast yourself as "not the President"), Jeff Goldblum has played the exact same character in every single movie he's ever starred in, and the dialogue is so terrible the only line in the whole thing I even bothered to remember was Will Smith punching the alien in the face and saying "Welcome to Earth." But even if you fix all those things, you're still left with a stale plot of alien invasion, humanity is woefully outnumbered, at the eleventh hour someone comes up with a brilliantly unorthodox plan and (presumably) sacrifices him or herself which saves the day and everyone is happy because it's a movie and therefore easy to ignore the devastating aftermath that would certainly follow a protracted war with a hostile extra terrestrial invasion force. In other words, it looks dumb.

At least they put out more trailers than just the first one I saw, because they provided some clarification I desperately needed. The first trailer made it look, to me anyway, like the aliens were invading Los Angeles only, and with all due respect to any friends I have who live there, my immediate reaction was "Who fucking cares?" Because, come on. Aliens are planning an invasion and the target they settle on is Los Angeles and that's it? A couple things come to mind. 1. These aliens are not terribly bright, unless the resources they're looking for are film reels and silicone (if so then good job aliens, you have chosen wisely). 2. All they want is Los Angeles and they'll leave the rest of us alone? GREAT! Give it to them! I'm happy to turn over Los Angeles if it means nothing changes for the rest of the Earth, other than having a new sort of weird neighbor, and we have plenty of those already, life won't be all that different. We don't need Los Angeles. Los Angeles is pretty much jewelery: it's pretty and sparkly and meant to show off our wealth, but it's not really that important and when the money runs out we should pawn that first. I couldn't understand what all the fuss was about. Let them have it. After seeing subsequent trailers though, the plot made a little more sense. Apparently, they are attacking all over the place and in fact most of the major cities of the Earth have already been overrun. Los Angeles is not the focal point of the attack, it's simply where mankind has chosen to make its last stand. Which is an entirely different story and far more plausible. If Los Angeles is all we have left, then yes, I agree, defend it with everything you've got. If it's our last toehold and holds the key to our continued existence as a species then it is certainly important enough of a place to serve as the setting of an alien invasion movie.

But it still looks dumb.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

More Hatiness

Still sick and really hopped up on whatever it is I'm taking. I've been acting like I'm on speed all day long, and have just overwhelmed the accountant with a conversation in the kitchen that included diagonal air vents, aliens, ethnic heritage, things that are green, the fact that all the Bourne movies taken together are one extremely long chase scene, the relative value of Los Angeles and a half a dozen other things that I've already forgotten. Which is not the point. In reality I probably would have been somewhat better off not coming to work. However, it is bar night tonight AND it is St. Pat's AND the NCAA tourney started this morning AND I'm still feeling hostile, so I want to go to Tai's tonight in my "Fuck You" etc. t-shirt and argue with people. But in my head there's an "If you don't eat your meat, you can't have any pudding! How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?" kind of thing going on where I feel like if I think I'm too sick to go to work, I must then also be too sick to go to the bar. So I had to go to work. Which also isn't the point. The entire paragraph is to introduce the fact that I still feel like I did yesterday and offer that up as an explanation of why I am ranting about another commercial that I hate. Which I told you would probably happen. OK? Good.

There was one commercial I forgot to mention yesterday which I also hate right now, which is the latest offering from 5 Hour Energy. Apparently, they are trying to gain market share now by going after the morning wake up market in addition to the stay-up-all-night crowd and the man-that-was-a-long-day crowd by attacking coffee. Specifically, by pointing out how enormously difficult and taxing it is to brew it and have to add cream and sugar to it, or what a travesty it is to have to wait in line to buy it if you don't want to make it yourself. It is the classic ploy of creating a problem that doesn't actually exist and then providing a solution that nobody needs. Listen to me: making coffee is not that hard. It isn't. It just isn't. You don't want to wait in line at this Starbucks? NO PROBLEM. There's bound to be five other ones across the street. You make yours at home but you don't want to have to wait for it to brew? NO PROBLEM. Most coffee makers these days have timers set on them so you can program when you want it to start brewing and then when you get up there will be a fresh pot of coffee waiting for you as if by magic. It's so much work to stir in a little cream? Actually, I can't really help you here. If you can't handle the thought of having to put cream in your coffee there is no hope for you anyway. Fuck off and drink it black then. NO ONE IS CHALLENGED BY COFFEE*. And if you are sitting in your kitchen staring at the empty coffee pot thinking "You mean I have to turn on a machine and wait for it to brew and pour it into a cup and put things in it and lift the cup to my lips and take a sip and swallow this coffee all by myself? Why must I be made to suffer this gross injustice day in and day out?" then maybe you better re-evaluate your life and whether or not it should be allowed to continue because you are the most useless human being on the entire planet and an asshole on top of it. No, 5 hour energy needs to stick with what it's good at, which is sending college students to an early grave due to massive amounts of alternating stimulants and depressants.

*Generally. Strictly speaking, this is not always true. When I went to visit the comic the first time he asked me to make him a cup of coffee and I have to admit I was stymied by it at first. This is because in England they all drink instant coffee, not brewed coffee, and I was unfamiliar. "You just put a spoonful of crystals into the water and stir it," he explained. It seemed like it was almost too easy and I was worried that it might be a trap. But I tried it and it worked and nothing bad happened at all, if you don't count the comic drinking a really shitty cup of coffee. Which I don't because he is English and doesn't know any better.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Commercials I Hate

Right, listen. I'm running a fever and I hate having a fever with the hatiest of hates. So fair warning: this post will be nit-picky, overly critical and full of vitriol. This will also be your only warning, so heed it. I am hostile.

With brilliant commercials like the Old Spice Guy, The Most Interesting Man in the World, all the Jameson ones and of course the long running and fabulous SportsCenter promos, it is obvious that there is a lot of talent out there in the advertising world. Why is it then, that there are so many flat out fucking shitty commercials still being made? There's just no excuse for that.

For as good as the SportsCenter series has been for years, I saw an ESPN promo today that was completely off the mark. It was for NASCAR. Now, I get that you have to really talk up NASCAR if you want people to watch it because NASCAR is dumb. But I think it is taking things a bit far to tell people that watching a NASCAR race is exciting because "there's uncertainty around every turn". What? No there isn't. Have you even seen NASCAR? It's a bunch of greasy hilljacks (plus one bow-legged overly dramatic woman) driving in circles. There's nothing that is uncertain here. I assure you, the only thing that is going to happen around every turn is that they're all going to make a left. Well whoopidy-do, assholes. NASCAR still sucks. Fuck off.

Also, what is with the Xfinity commercials (for that matter, what is with the name "Xfinity"? That's not a word. It's not even a portmanteau. You suck.)? That bundle of wires crawling around is fucking creepy. Congratulations, you've somehow managed to make electrical components look gross. Right now Xfinity is promoting their baseball package. They went for the American heritage angle, which is ok, but they go and ruin it by telling you that baseball is "America's first space program". Sorry, I believe the organization you're looking for was called the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. Hitting a baseball is not the same thing as going to space. No one has ever actually hit a baseball into space. If someone had we'd know about it because he'd have to be a fucking mutant. Baseball has nothing to do with space. Shut up.

Then there are the commercials for Windows Cloud. These are not all bad. The one in the airport makes sense - the flight is delayed, they're stuck there, might as well watch some television. I'll just overlook the fact that the show they chose to watch was called Celebrity Rehab because I'm magnanimous like that. It's pretty neat when you think about it. Who would have thought back in the 80's, when televisions were less of an appliance and more of a piece of furniture, and computers were ginormous and had no hard drives, that someday we'd be watching television on a computer small enough to carry around with you and that you wouldn't have to plug it into anything? No, the one I'm on about is the one with the mom who is editing the family photo. Again, no problem with that per se - I'm all for retouching your photos, no one wants to see Pam's stretch marks in Playboy. The problem I have is with the two lines she has at the end. I'll take each in turn:

  1. "There! A photo I can share without ridicule." Are you serious? You just dressed your entire family in the exact same god-awful blue flannel shirt, you most certainly are going to get ridiculed. Here, I'll do it right now: you look like a bunch of fucking tools dressed like that. Are you high? You know your kids are going to get the shit beaten out of them at school if anyone ever sees this don't you? Actually, maybe that was the plan all along because the next line is
  2. "Cloud gives me the family that nature never could." Wow. Thanks, June Cleaver. Way to make your husband and kids feel like failures. Seriously, how bad could they be? They did all dress up in that hideous fucking shirt that may yet get them killed in an effort to make you happy, I think that's pretty nice of them. I sure as hell wouldn't do it. Your impossible standards are going to leave you a lonely bitter woman after your kids cut you out of their lives (after years of therapy from how you fucked them up) and your husband leaves you for his secretary because at least she doesn't criticize every. single. thing. he. does. You seem like a bitch. I don't want to use any products that you use, Cloud is tainted now.
Like I said, fever. Stuck on the couch. I'm sure there will be more so stay turned.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I Need New Hobbies, I Think.

I have no use for St. Pat's on the whole because I am not Irish and I am not Catholic and therefore it doesn't apply to me. The thing is I'm kind of torn about it because one thing I do enjoy having an occasion for is day drinking. The city of Chicago, where I live and dream, always celebrates St. Pat's on the preceding Saturday. The claim is that it's so children can see the river dyed green and the parade rather than holding those events on a school day. I'm going to go ahead and call bullshit on that and advance my own theory that this is how Chicagoans justify day drinking twice in one week, once on the sanctioned Saturday and then again on the actual holiday, in the hope that it will tide them over to the next made up holiday Cinco De Mayo.

For the past few years I've split the difference between my opposing views by going out day drinking with wrongly colored hair and a t-shirt that reads "Fuck you, you're Irish". But after being awakened just after 6 a.m. this Saturday by ALREADY drunk dickwads with presumably little or no Irish ancestry walking down my street and yelling, I decided that this year I would skip the jackassery and stay home by myself (the bartender not having the option to stay home because, well, he's a bartender). So I did.

What I did not do was to pair that decision with another one to also skip the day drinking. It is a designated day drinking day in Chicago, after all, and there is a mostly untouched handle of Captain sitting forlornly in my kitchen crying "Drink me, please, so I can fulfill my destiny". So I got with the pouring and sat down to watch WWII in Color on the Military Channel for reasons I can't explain even to myself. I was drunk by 2:30, which is right around the time I decided to e-mail the comic.

The comic and I have a storied history of drunk communication. He has a peculiar habit of calling me when he's on vacation and then putting someone else on the phone. On my end, since drunk dialing from here would normally wake him up because he's in the future, I've taken to drunk e-mailing. The thing is, I can barely spell when I'm stone cold sober and combined with drunk typing, most of my messages end up being incoherent. He finds the e-mails highly amusing and pulls his favorite phrases out of them to use against me on Facebook (such as the time I wrote "HOLTY FUUUUUUCK!!!!!!!!!!" for who knows what reason, which became his response to everything I posted for the next three days). Here is the message I sent him on Saturday:

"Im drun k. Im going to dfrunk work out and then drunk bake cookies becauase it's daydsrinking dau in chiACBGO. i can't find my cat. national lampoons christmas vcacation is on becausr thaT makes sense in march. OOOO CAT IS HERE!!!!! bye"

to which he responded "chiACBGO is the best spelling of Chicago I have ever seen".

Little known fact: there is a stage in my drunkenness that comes before the one where I am Loud that I call Ambition. Ambition is the time when I have the sudden urge to do things that my drunk brain considers constructive. And sometimes they are, such as when I decide to CLEAN ALL THE THINGS! (by the way, if you're not reading Hyperbole and a Half I suggest you start doing so immediately). It is little known because it's usually short lived and I'm rarely in a position to do anything about it ("I should totally reupholster the dining room chairs right now!" I'll say to myself when I'm drunk in a different country from the one that has my chairs). In this case, the Ambition told me I should work out and then bake cookies, which in hindsight seems totally counterproductive. I did end up doing both of these things, plus a sink full of dishes. But the Ambition can only take you so far, and it did not take me far enough to actually put on workout clothes, or in fact any clothes. My workout attire was panties and a pair of socks with kitties on them. I'm sure it was very attractive. I did at least think to put some clothes on before I started baking. You can tell because if I hadn't, right now you'd most likely be reading a blog post about how I managed to get burn marks on my nipples from naked cookie making and that I'm so much more hardcore than the stupid Girl Scouts. I'm not, by the way, I'm just far more accident prone.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

The Highest Level Of Laziness

BrownsFan: Did you like that link I sent you?

Me: Yes. So I tweeted it and said "That's my dinner sorted." At least it would be, if I ever left the house.

BrownsFan: You want to be slutty but you're too lazy?

Me: Exactly. Why can't I just be slutty from the couch?

Monday, March 07, 2011


I was talking to BrownsFan last week, because I would spontaneously combust if I didn't talk to her every day, and she showed me an article she found on the interwebs she thought I'd be interested in. This one. She also kindly covered up the photograph so I could read the article without having a nervous breakdown.

That's right people: 52,000 cars are being recalled on account of an obviously coordinated attack by the spider nation's Arachni-terrorist division, and I have one thing to say about it.


One type of car? Just the one? And I'm supposed to believe that this is some sort of accident of fate? This is no accident, this is the work of a CREATURE WHO SCHEMES. And these creatures are scheming to GET ME.

"But amberance," I hear you asking, "if the spiders were out to get YOU specifically, wouldn't they be building webs in the exhaust systems of MINI Coopers, such as the one you yourself drive?"

Oh you poor, naive little things. Of course not. That would be too obvious. Don't you see how a direct attack would create too much risk of me just going out and buying a different kind of car? No, no, children, they are way to cunning for that. No, they are building them in Mazdas for a reason. You know who drives a Mazda? MrSteve. A Mazda I've been in a number of times, such as when we used to go for long drives on gorgeous summer afternoons, enjoying the weather, relaxing, my guard completely down...yeah. Do you see it now? The creepy bastards are trying to get to me through my friends, and their efforts have escalated now to a pinpointed attack on Mazdas because I hang around with one. What will these foul creatures think of next? Hiding in the rims of beer kegs so they can get to me through the bartender? Gathering their forces inside bags of cat food so as to ambush me when I go to feed my kitty (she's evil too. I need to be on guard for this plan, she may cut a deal with them.)? Massing inside the floatation devices of planes used for international flights so they can jump out and devour me on my way to England (it worked for the snakes)?

One thing is for sure: they are coming for me. The proof is in the Mazdas.

Northwestern Here I Come

So, just to be sure I have all the facts straight...

A group of 100 ADULT college students who CHOSE to take a course in human sexuality witnessed a sex act during an OPTIONAL after class session between two people who were in a committed relationship, and it caused such outrage that the university is investigating, the professor has been forced to apologize and people are threatening to pull their (again, adult) children who weren't even involved in the incident out of school?

This is SHOCKING. It is obvious that something needs to be done.

Such as me going back to school.

Seriously, did you see the size of that homemade drilldo? That thing is fucking impressive.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Breaking News: Amberance Went Somewhere

There have been no updates to the blog lately, mainly because there is nothing at all of substance going on in my life. I go to work, I come home, I watch Tosh.0 and imagine having rough sex with the host (I don't know, the guy just looks dirty to me), I go to bed. Sometimes I work out or try to cross-stitch (which is made difficult by a cat who thinks any and all thread in the home must be attacked and destroyed), but for the most part there simply hasn't been anything to write about. Over the weekend I attempted to rectify six week's worth of lameness by cramming my entire social life into three days.

On Friday, the great Jon from Total Talk Nonsense, the greatest podcast anywhere, was playing a gig out in the suburbs with his new band, The Toxic Crayons. I had originally planned on attending as a participant - the lead singer had been asking me to sing with their various bands for years, and we'd finally nailed down some actual songs to work on rather than just the vague idea that "you should sing with us". Side note: I find the request for me to sing with the band completely hilarious, given that none of them, including Jon, have ever actually heard me sing. They're basing this decision solely on the fact that I told them I could sing, which they've taken at face value and assumed that I'm brilliant. Which I am, but they have no way of actually knowing that. For all they know I could just be saying I can sing when I really sound like Roseanne Barr. Anywhore, the plans fell through when I never went to band practice because various members may or may not have learned the songs. For my own part, I would have been nervous anyway - I know I am capable of singing "Heartbreaker", I just don't think I'm nearly cool enough to pull off getting on stage and looking like I have any business singing Pat Benatar. Besides, boy who doesn't call was supposed to be there and despite the fact that I want to lick him, singing in front of him gives me pause. It didn't matter, because he wasn't there and I didn't sing anyway. I knew I was in the suburbs when I walked into the bar and was immediately surrounded by children. Not college kids on a binge, actual children. Because in the suburbs, you can take your kids to the pub for dinner and not worry that they might see someone getting fingerbanged in full view of the public. The show went pretty well for the most part, despite half the band being sick and one song that completely disintegrated. They made up for it by playing some Stray Cats. In the meantime, I got a round of applause from the band wives and other fans sitting near me for getting carded, which I attributed to my green hair but Mrs. Jon insisted had more to do with my "young face".

I left there and drove Alistair back to the city to leave at the bar for the bartender to run errands after work ("I want you to promise me you'll be very careful," said the Crayon's bass player while bear hugging me goodbye, "because it is snowing and everyone else on the road is drunk, and you're adorable."). Then I went into the bar to let the bartender know where the car was. Mistake. There were too many friends there to just walk in and walk back out again, and I wound up hanging around for an hour and a half, listening to 90's hip hop (yes, I still know all the words to "The Humpy Dance" AND "Poison" by Bel Biv DeVoe, thanks for asking) and chatting with Hellbilly about various concerts and, unfortunately, UFC fighting. By chatting I mean nodding, Hellbilly needs no partner to carry on a conversation because he never ever ever shuts up.

I eventually got home from Tai's some time after 3 a.m. and spend another 45 minutes stalking people on Facebook and eating pretzels before I went to bed. My plans for Saturday had involved a lot of errand running and some weight lifting, all of which fell apart when I didn't get out of bed until 5 in the afternoon (this was not all my fault - I woke up at 3, but was immediately trapped under a cuddly cat who growled and hissed every time I tried to ease her off of me). Instead I spent the evening watching Chicago and deciding that Velma Kelly is the roll for me and that Queen Latifa is actually pretty fucking sexy.

On Sunday, the bartender and I headed over to the Congress to see Against Me! and the Dropkick Murphys. The Congress is one of my favorite venues to see music in Chicago. Unfortunately it is run by idiots. We had bought tickets online, or thought we had. After standing in line to get in for five minutes, we were told that anyone with paper tickets had to go stand in line at Will Call and trade them in for real tickets, which if I have to stand in line for them, it largely defeats the point of buying them online. While standing in the cold and rain waiting in line and shivering, we saw a group of girls who were not exactly dressed for the weather much at all which happily has inspired the name of my new all girl band - Daddy Issues. Our first single will be called "Get In Line" and is about running a train (Google it if you don't know, just don't watch the videos. Or watch them, I don't know your preferences). The line moved more slowly than it needed to - Will Call has but one door for both ingress and egress because clearly these people are geniuses. Once we got to the front of the line, they took our pieces of paper and issued us our tickets: basically little red tickets you would use for a raffle that I could have bought a roll of 1000 of for $5 at the party store. Then we got back in the first line, where they didn't even bother to take my little raffle ticket anyway, so I'm mystified why they made me stand in line to get one. Once inside we met up with the loquacious Hellbilly and a friend of his and settled in to the side of the main crowd because we are old people and also it's closer to the beer.

The Dropkick Murphys draw an interesting crowd. It's a mix of punks and people who think they're Irish, and everyone is drunk before they even get there. One girl was clearly on Ecstasy and had no idea she was not at a rave. The Dropkick Murphys were brilliant as always, one of their roadies proposed to his girlfriend on stage (she said "HOLY SHIT" which the crowd took as a yes) and they brought Chris Pisani on stage during "I'm Shipping Up To Boston", who Blackhawks fans will know as "That guy who dances to the Dropkick Murphys song at every Blackhawks game". All the while, Hellbilly was trying to kill us with Jameson, which I eventually had to start discreetly setting on the floor and knocking over to avoid a trip to the ER. The show had started very late due to Against Me! getting stuck in traffic driving up from Houston and the Dropkick Murphys having attended the Blackhawks game which went to shootouts. Consequently, there were many disappointed 12 year olds who didn't get flashed during "Kiss me I'm Shitfaced" (which my friend Tanyas participated in at the Saturday night show and then stole a set list) because they left before the encore, and I didn't get home until after 1 a.m. on a school night and paid for dearly the next day.

I am a party animal.