1. Powerball Mania!

    IT’S sweeping the nation!

    It’s even the top story on Google News as I write this.

    Look! Look!

    Yes! There’s no unrest in Egypt!

    Obama has solved every problem in America!

    And apparently Mitt Romney is neither at Disneyland nor pumping gas today! So why shouldn’t this be the top story?

    Google News lets users personalize their content – how personalized is this? It’s geared to one specific reader: The one who wins the jackpot!

    If someone does!

    Welcome to journalism in the 21st century, folks!

    And then there’s the Powerball site itself in all its Web 1.0 glory:

    An over $500 million jackpot…and the game’s website – complete with ads for refinancing your home (in the off-chance you don’t have the winning ticket) – looks like the project the slow guy on the Ted Parsnips Web Design Team did for his junior high computer class project in 1997.

    So, folks, go ahead and piss your money away on Powerball tickets if you want to. Go ahead! Who’s stopping you?!

    Anyone with a brain in their head knows your only real chance at getting rich is with Scratchers.

    Ooh! Almost!

    Posted by on November 27, 2012, 1:23 PM.

  2. Another Example Of Society’s Mounting Stupidity!

    I  REALIZE  I run the risk of alienating the, what, six of you who occasionally wander on here to kill some time when there’s no new interesting cat videos on YouTube if I start complaining about the irritating minutia of my day-to-day life too much, but, aaah, the hell with it, right?

    Here is a photo I took of the TV screen in the living room.  Yes, yes, yes,  let’s all make fun of me for “Teen Wolf.” Look, Kaitlyn loves that show, sure. But beside that, do you see anything, hmm, out of the ordinary, say?

    Let me spell it out for you: The titles are not alphabetized correctly.

    When arranging a list of items in alphabetical order, you disregard the word “the” at the beginning of a title.

    Like you, I learned this in second grade.

    So when I’m scrolling through the things I’ve recorded, I get about half of them in the right order and then I hit the Ts with some (but not all!) titles which are alphabetized starting with “The.”

    That is, some shows with “The” in the title are alphabetized beginning with the first main word; others, such as “The Amazing Race” and “The Men Who Stare At Goats” are alphabetized starting with “The.” There’s absolutely no consistency!

    I realize that in the grand scheme of things, this is not a life-altering issue. But on the other hand, it’s presumably someone’s specific job at Dish Network to input the titles alphabetically for viewing on menu screens like this. So he (or she) is doing it completely wrong!

    And who suffers?

    Me, who has to spend another 0.7 seconds scrolling down to “The Price Is Right.”

    Posted by on November 26, 2012, 4:15 AM.

  3. And Then There Are Some Hostess Products That, Even Now, Nobody Wants

    Nor will anyone miss.

    Fourteen pounds of Hostess Holiday Fruitcake still available at Walmart in West Hills, folks!

    No need to rush! Doubtful they’re going anywhere soon.

    Posted by on November 24, 2012, 10:42 PM.

  4. A Day For Giving Thanks!

    …for my world-famous deviled eggs – that is, if you were lucky enough to wrangle an invite to stately Parsnips manor.

    Mmmm-mmm! That’s a gooooood deviled egg! Good deviled egg!

    While you’re here, why not add something to the always-falling-off-the-fridge Kitchen White Board, a Parsnips Family Tradition that I started last night while preparing my renowned Sea Foam Salad and drinking.

    I think there’s a little room left next to Boolreenkle. However, before you add anything, if you could sketch a rough image of what you intend to do on this cocktail napkin here. Just so I can be sure it fits the theme and that you have a good grasp of the  house style. (Yes, yes, “pepperoni” and “shrimps” went up there when I wasn’t looking – what can you do?)

    Anyway, Happy Thanksgiving! Happy Thanksgiving to one and all of, what, the six of you.

    Posted by on November 22, 2012, 1:37 PM.

  5. Helping the Stupid People!

    It’s what I do!

    Why did I buy these?

    To help the stupid people, of course!

    By purchasing these, it’s one less package for some dumbass to waste his or her money on and then put on eBay in hopes that they’re the only genius who thought of this and that they’re actually going to become rich selling secondhand Twinkies.

    Also, I wanted something I could feel good about for breakfast tomorrow.

    Posted by on November 16, 2012, 4:57 PM.

  6. Dunt, Dunt, Dunt-Dunt – Dunt, Dunt, Dunt-Dunt…Deedle-ee…Deedle-ee…Deedle-ee, Dun-Nuh!

    Good morning, Jim.

    What you’re looking at is an all-transistor Apolec tape recorder, Model RA-11, manufactured in 1963 by a Japanese firm called Sunwave Industrial Company.

    As you can see, the device originally retailed for $15.87 at Thrifty, a now-defunct drug store chain. Today, in its current state, it has been arbitrarily priced nearly ten dollars more.

    In an effort to raise money for its overseas terrorist operations, the Syndicate has taken over local Goodwill thrift stores and labeled old, damaged items with criminally high price tags. 

    Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to infiltrate Goodwill, drive out the Syndicate, reform their pricing policies, and ensure prices commensurate with the values of obsolete, second-hand, donated merchandise.

    As always, should you or any member of your IM Force be caught, killed or seen trying on used socks, the Secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions.

    This tape recorder will self-destruct and blow all the fuses in the store as soon as you plug it in to test it. 

    Good luck, Jim.

    Posted by on November 13, 2012, 9:00 AM.

  7. What’s Bueno: Taco Bell Home Originals!

    “SURE, I like Taco Bell food,” we’ve all of us said, “but driving to Taco Bell, sitting in the car, talking to that impersonal squawk box, and then having to reach out the window to grab the bag – really, who has time for all that hassle?!”

    Then along came Taco Bell Home Originals – “Taco Bell” because it’s made by the good folks at Taco Bell, “Home” because that’s where you prepare it, and “Originals” because evidently it was Opposite Day in the marketing department when they decided on a name.

    And what could be easier? Just go to the 99¢ Only Store, pick up a box of Taco Bell Home Originals (in this case “Cheesy Double Decker Taco Dinner”), ground beef, lettuce, tomatoes and sour cream. (I suppose this really is a “Home Original” because the restaurant version includes refried beans though the picture on the box above does not. But you’re already in the store, so you can pick up a can of those, too.)

    By the way, you’re going to have to drop by the supermarket as well: Many 99¢ Onlys now sell some produce and dairy products but sadly, fresh ground beef hasn’t yet made it to their hallowed and discounted aisles. Someday…!

    Once you get home, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get to work – browning the beef, washing the tomatoes and lettuce, and respectively dicing and shredding them. Better get those refried beans out of the can and into a small pot on the stove. Now lay down your tortillas, open up that nacho cheese sauce packet and squeeze away, brother! Ooh, don’t forget to stir the beans! Next, simply place a hard taco shell on each tortilla, wrap it around – careful now, that cheese sauce gets everywhere! And be gentle, friend! Too hard and you’ll snap the two shells that weren’t already a jigsaw puzzle of sharp, broken shards when you opened the box.

    Time to start spooning in the ground beef (you remembered to drain it, right?), dolloping on some sour cream, and adding lettuce and a sprinkling of diced tomatoes. Wait, what’s that burning smell?!  Oh, no – the beans! Surely you’ll be able to salvage a tablespoon or so of them. Eh…except they were supposed to go on the tortillas with the cheese. Ah well. Next time, right?

    How you’ll chuckle to yourself as you think about the plight of those poor suckers sitting in the drive-thru line down the street as you prepare this fun and delicious homemade Taco Bell meal, and then again later as you clean up the kitchen and do all those dishes. (Better let the refried bean pot soak overnight.) Oh, and remember to stop at the ATM on the way to work tomorrow because somehow you’re out of cash.

    Anyway, like me, you’re baffled how such an awesome product ended up at the 99¢ Only Store, but also like me, you’re sure glad it did.

    Posted by on November 12, 2012, 9:00 AM.

  8. Birdwatching!

    HERE’S something I don’t quite understand.

    This guy here:

    As you can see, he’s the mascot for Penguin Brand Dry Ice.

    How’d they do that? It’s clearly this guy here:

    Only they’ve taken the pom-pom off the hat and given him a bow tie.

    Maybe the dry ice industry – Big Dry Ice – made the argument that there’s only so many ways to draw a cartoon penguin.

    But Universal Studios, who owns and licenses the entire Walter Lantz stable of characters, is notoriously litigious and protective of its properties.

    So how does Penguin Dry Ice get away with that but my latest business venture gets shut down on opening night?

    Posted by on November 9, 2012, 9:03 AM.

  9. What’s Bueno: Liberté Yogurt!

    AS YOU KNOW, one of the current food trends is Greek-style yogurt. Greek-style yogurt is currently trending. [Eugh.]

    So when I saw these things at the 99¢ Only Store at two for 99¢ only…

    …I knew I had to try them. Oh, sure, I act like I don’t care what other folks think, but the truth is, I’m very insecure. I need you, what, six people to know I’m eating the trendy foods.

    Anyway, holy mother of God, this yogurt is the best yogurt in the history of yogurt! I’m not kidding! It’s amazing! Oh ho ho, let me tell you, brother – you have never tasted yogurt like this yogurt. It’s nectar of the gods, in yogurtal form. It’s-just-that-good!

    I devoured it in a matter of mere seconds. This involved me darting my long, Gene Simmons-like tongue into every recess of the plastic receptacle so that not a bit, not a single beneficial bacteria culture of delicious yogurt was wasted. And as I was carrying the empty cup to the trash, I noticed this:

    Total fat 18%!  Saturated fat 37%! And sugars – 26 grams! For six lousy ounces! No wonder it tastes so good! It’s all fat mixed with heaping tablespoons of sugar, practically!

    This changes everything!

    …Oh screw it, who am I kidding? This changes nothing.

    Well, maybe to offset this delicious taste treat, I’ll try and limit myself to just one of Marie Callender’s nutritious 16.5 ounce Creamy Parmesan Chicken Pot Pies for dinner tonight. Try.

    Posted by on November 7, 2012, 4:52 AM.

  10. It’s Been Unseasonably Warm Here In L.A.

    So I exercised my God-given right, guaranteed by the Declaration of Independence, to vote today – shirtless – just as the Indians did back when they were voting for president hundreds and hundreds of years ago.

    I’m telling you, though – they always manage to nail you with those stupid “I Voted” stickers on the way out, don’t they?

    Now if someone can just help me get it off my back.

    Posted by on November 6, 2012, 5:40 PM.

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