How to Cut Off Your Friends From Drinking (without them noticing)

August 4, 2011 § Leave a comment

Everyone has the one, or rather two, three, four, five friends who don’t know when they’ve had one too many Vodka Tonics. Hell we’ve all been that friend at some point. They embarrass you. They give away your phone number for you. They try to play matchmaker and set you up with people you don’t know and are not interested in, or worse they pick fights with strangers and insult people they have never met. They become a sobbing machine. They like to think that they are so sly that the bartender won’t notice if they sneak around the bar and pour themselves a beer–and then you all get kicked out. “Fuck that place,” they say, “let’s go somewhere else.”

On to the next bar where they scream “PIZZA NOW!” at the top of their lungs. They get upset if the Phillies their baseball team loses an incredibly unimportant game and scream at the TV. They fight you when you try to get them away from the 50 something or older man who keeps saying, while patting their shit faced bottom, “What’s young and what’s old? Age is only a number.”

You’re right old man, age is only a number. And as far as your duty as a friend is concerned, the most important number, is the thread count of those nasty-ass sheets they will wake to, face first and drooling if they don’t get their faded ass into that cab that’s waiting ASAP.

Here are some tips to cut off your friends when you feel they are just too drunk to hack it.

If you’re the one accompanying your friend on their slutty, drunken rampage:

  • Try to convince the bartender to do all of the below without directly telling your friend that they’re cut off. No one likes to be cut off.
  • Tell them you’re leaving and go to another bar.
  • Take a cab, drop them off first, and go back to the bar.
  • Take pictures of them doing things you know they’ll regret and show them the pictures the next day. This is a guaranteed self-guilt cut-off for at least a couple of days.
  • Ask the bartender to straight up fucking cut them off. Tip them well because your friend probably won’t.
  • Tell the guy at the end of the bar that your friend thinks he’s really cute and that she’s just really shy. Make sure you buy the suffering bastard a nice drink.
  • Call their boyfriend or girlfriend to come pick them up.
  • Take their cash out of their wallet so they can’t/won’t buy the next drink. Replace it right before they leave (coat pocket, purse, floor, etc.)

If you’re the one behind the bar:

The basic tricks:

  • Give them food.
  • Give them water.
  • Give them cigarettes.

The awesome tricks:

  • If your friend is paying with a credit card: Tell your friend at some point that your boss is likely to come in and you need to “authorize” their credit card to open a tab so he/she doesn’t think you’re dodging “the rules.” Swipe it, run it, and then tell them it declined. Hopefully they’ll get worried about their money and leave. Wink at them and tell them you got their drinks covered (hell, you were gonna throw them a few anyway) If they ask you later why it went through, shrug and say, “I dunno, credit cards are flaky sometimes.” They will nod and agree. Everyone has had a credit card issue and they will be thankful that their card “declined” in front of a friend and saved them the embarrassment of not having money for a stranger.
  • Slowly lessen the amount of booze in their drinks to almost zero.
  • What if they comment on the taste? If they sip their drinks through a straw, dip the end of the straw in their chosen alcohol but don’t put much in their drinks. If they drink without straws, float some alcohol on top. This way the first thing to hit their lips is the burning of a strong drink.
  • Tell them you made their drinks with Top-Shelf alcohol and that’s why they can’t taste the astringent, grain alcohol you have for well liquor. Only the best for your buddies. “If my boss found out I’d get fired for sure.”
  • Mix their beer with lemonade and tell them that “Shandy’s made with Mike’s Hard Lemonade are super popular right now.”
  • Write something down in your the bar’s log book (if you have one, and you should) while staring directly at your friend and “the hidden camera in the corner.” This will instill a sense of paranoia.
  • Tell them their tab is much higher than it actually is. “I served you like 12 beers, dude. Man, can you drink.” This will make them feel awesome and think that they could maybe hold back a little if they don’t want to black out right away.
  • Tell your other friends that it’s time  for so-and-so to leave and it’s best to go quietly.

The most important thing is to make your friend feel like they still had a good night. Of course, there are circumstances where nothing much else can be done but to tell them to stop being an asshole.

These notions could brand me as the friend to never go out drinking with OR I’ll be a party-saver for those who can handle their booze.

You’re Welcome.


How to Sell your Home in a Flailing Economy on Craigslist

June 6, 2011 § Leave a comment

Be Creative. Your house has many assets and perks. Highlight them. Draw attention to the crevices. Bring light to the shadows.

Write an Ad for Craigslist:

Are you a Serial Killer?

Homicidal maniacs, psychopaths, murderers, suburban death squads (or sobriquet of your preference) are all invited to check out this local, organic Last House on the Right…of a cul-de-sac, no less, in none-too-quaint small-town Minnesota.

A 1970’s split-level abode (think Faces of Death era) on a four-acre wooded plot in Ramsey, MN. Compete with post-Dahmer and Gein copycats in Wisconsin, your neighboring state.

The four-acre plot:

  • Dozens of trees to shade your nightly habits (All quiet on the Northwestern front is a guarantee!)
  • 1 Swamp—corpses are easily mummified in peat
  • 2 Wood Sheds—one for stacking and one for sawing (be aware that one has better acoustics than the other)
  • 1 Garage (with rafters!)
  • 1 broke down mini van comes free for extra “storage”
  • 4 acres of your own personal cemetery
  • 1 personal sewage tank underground in the back yard (disguises whatever noxious smells you may induce)

The first floor of the house is all white, ceramic tile flooring for easier cleanup and a fireplace to boot! And there are, not three, but five bedrooms for every stage of torture you’d like to arrange. Start small, but aim big–H.H. Holmes 1893 Chicago World’s Fair big.


The Neighborhood: White, suburban, upper-middle class families with plenty of children to go around for those of you partial to morsels rather than meals. Trust me, these people won’t be missed. Just two miles down the road police found body parts in a field—and  three years later they haven’t a clue.

Your Street: One of the neighbors on the street deals meth or heroin or something—I’m sure you two can shake on something mutually beneficial. The other neighbors are old, cranky, half-deaf, blind, rat-poisoning dog killers who hate children. The last thing they’ll be is meddlesome. The local law enforcement accepts CASH only. Make sure you bargain, they’re none too bright (aforementioned anonymous body parts).

Appraised at 180,000: a great deal in hard economic times, especially considering the suburban boom.  Make the ‘Burbs come to life again! Give ’em something to gossip about.
Together we can transform Minnesota into the new “We Eat People” state! Twins/Brewers, Vikings/Packers, Gophers/Badgers—let the rivalries continue and the body count rise…for real this time.

Disclaimer: This is a rough draft.

Careers #1: It’s Alright, Ma It’s Life, and Life Only

June 3, 2011 § Leave a comment

Portland in some ways has history, but the erected statues and plaques encased in the brick sidewalk seem affected. Discussing the Civil War, quoting Bob Dylan, praising Abraham Lincoln…the West Coast seems too far away for American History–American Present yes!–but not the seeping, porous dynamo you experience in old farmhouses in the midwest, dirty side streets in the south, or the well-preserved, field trip annoying vestiges of the East.

I’ve done a lot of self-reflection in recent years, often more with the “doing myself in” with booze and forgetting about the self-reflection part only to come across some pieces of paper or journals with self-expressions drunkenly scrawled in dry erase marker. But I’ve realized (years ago) that I have no idea what the hell I’m doing and that I really know nothing about anything.

A good friend of mine commented on a break up with an old girlfriend once, noting that the only things that really bothered him about her when they were together were her career path and ambitions. “Does she really want to be a bartender for the rest of her life?”

I actually think that I wouldn’t mind being a bartender for the rest of my life, but my problem, which I think is somewhat universal among my peers, is that I want to push myself so hard to see what the limits of my career potential are (right now it’s paralegal and then possibly law school). I drop the anvil on myself now and see how much weight I can push off. And then someday in the future I’ll realize that “jobs” really aren’t for me at all, and I’ll open my own Western Steampunk themed bar and feel good about being a bartender for the rest of my life.

Decide what to be and go be it, for a little bit at least, and then decide again.

Interview #6- The Non-Interview Rejection

May 29, 2011 § Leave a comment

It was for a receptionist position at an online college. They phone interviewed me for 5 minutes and then told me I would need to take a “skills” test. Little did I know that I would be taking the LSAT to interview as a receptionist. Forty-five minutes of logical reasoning questions–and NOT the easy kind. So I passed it with the help of my sister and brother-in-law and was scheduled for a regular interview on a Wednesday morning.

I called Wednesday morning and cancelled my interview. “Hi this is ________, and I was scheduled to have an interview with you this morning. Unfortunately, I accepted a position just yesterday with another company and I will not be coming in. I would like to thank you very much for the opportunity.”

One week later I received this email:

Dear Candidate,

I am in review of your resume in regards to a Front Office Receptionist position on our Oregon campus, and would like to know if you are still in search of employment. 

The position pays $12.00 per hour, is full time and we offer a nice benefits package.

Please let me know if you are interested in pursuing this possible opportunity.


***** *******
Staffing Coordinator,
Talent Acquisition Team

New Name. Same Mission.
US Education Corporation is now Carrington Colleges Group, Inc.
Career minded. Life Changing

To which I replied:

Dear *******,

I was offered an interview at Carrington as a receptionist a couple of weeks ago, but I called to cancel because I found other employment the day before.

Thank you, however, for your time.


The American Dream

Another week went by and I received this email:

May 6, 2011

Dear American Dream,

I wanted to thank you for your interest in Carrington College and for the Receptionist – Portland position you applied for.

Your qualifications have been carefully reviewed. However, we have moved forward with another candidate who we feel more closely matches the desired skills and experience of the Receptionist – Portland position.

Your resume will be retained for a reasonable period of time and you will be contacted in the event our employment needs should change. We also encourage you to visit our website as new positions become available.

We appreciate your interest in our company and wish you success in your search for a suitable career position.


Carrington Colleges Talent Acquisition

What does it say about our job market when you get rejected after CANCELLING your interview? Dammit.

Unemployment #12: Is it okay to lie on my resume?

April 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

Is it okay to lie to your bitchy ex-girlfriend when she asks if you’re seeing anyone? Is it okay to lie to your mom when she asks you if you’ve quit smoking? Is it okay to lie to the cop when from behind the flashlight he/she asks if you’ve been smoking weed? Is it okay to tell your out-of-state friends that you went to your team’s Super Bowl?

Like the questions above, lying on your resume falls under morally ambivalent light. Angels are not going to shed tears. Kittens will still be born. Sarah Palin will still never be president.

Therefore, it is absolutely okay to lie on your resume. And by lying I don’t mean inventing jobs you never had. You can’t say that you were vice president of the Save the Rhesus Monkey when you lived in India–unless of course, you are a brilliant raconteur and an expert with Photoshop, then totally go with it. Although you’d probably make more money using those Photoshop skills to put out fake ids for rich, bratty college kids than you would at the type of job that was stupid or indifferent enough to hire you.

Think about the kind of job you’re applying for. Is it a customer service job? If they ask for 5 years of experience bar tending and you only have had three, go ahead and lengthen the dates of work at your last bar job. If you have zero bar tending experience, either go get some, or be prepared to tell the biggest yarn when the boss finds out you don’t know how to make a Manhattan.

Most non-corporate service industry jobs WILL NOT do a background check or call your references. Why? Because service industry people are jaded and they don’t give a damn if someone has something nice to say about you.

Once again, the worst that could happen is that you get caught and don’t get hired. If you think that lying on your resume will really bring better job opportunities and your lies are so good that the devil has solid competition, then by all means, go for it. Be aware, however, that your lies could come back to haunt you and you’ll want to make yourself scarce when the boss at your new dream job has immediate need for a Russian translator.

Unemployment #11: Irritated with job hunting? Why don’t you go blog about it you whiny, selfish asshole.

March 5, 2011 § 1 Comment

This is what English majors would call an exercise in self-reflexivity. Take this time of unholy unemployment or career hunting and attempt to dissect what’s really going in that hollow heart of yours. Now might be a good time to feel remorse for all the awful, shitty things you’ve done to yourself and the worse things you’ve done to other people. Like that time you banged a bunch of girls because you were feeling like a less badass reincarnation of Steve McQueen. Or how about when that sweet, but nerdy guy asked for your number and you spat at his un-ironic sneakers. Got it? Yeah, you deserve to miserable you jerk, and you don’t even know what IRONY means.

Who doesn’t love a good blog? Personally, I despise most blogs, including my own–probably. I only write to keep myself from dying of boredom or daily decreasing self-confidence or the thought that I’ll lose all my SKILLZ if I don’t incessantly post about nonsense. After I post, I go back and read my entries and think, “Could you have made any MORE grammatical mistakes, you asshole. No wonder you’re jobless AND suck at relationships.”

Blogs and websites, however, are important tools in manipulating an interview in your favor. Are they gonna hire the guy who blogs about sports? Or the guy who just gets mouthy about how badly the Yankees need to die in a fire, preferably, in the locker room after losing to the Pirates (some day, man).

There are very few purists left in this country, most everyone is an asshole and believes that everyone else is an asshole. Have you noticed that  everyone talks about how everyone else is soooo stupid and yet 90% of people post the same dribble on their social networking sites at the same time. Leave me alone, Internet. Get high with dinosaurs or something.

People talk too much; our limber tongues will be the voice of our extinction……

(sounded kinda cool, ya gotta admit).

Anyway, unemployed? Have an advanced degree and yet no one will hire you?Unfortunately, proof of your hard work at past jobs isn’t enough in this competitive job market, you have to prove the hard work you did not working. Any examples of your hobbies, like photography, writing, websites are a good way to make some meager freelance cash and supply some props during your interview.

Babysitting cross-eyed and adorable (but really naughty) puppies is another way to make some meager cash.

Sadly, my own writings are not tasteful enough to show any future employer. This planet-wide chatterbox information overload cacophony will end when people of this world have nothing left to say except “Fuck.”

Have you seen what’s happening in Wisconsin? It’s just the beginning, man.

Unemployment #10: Don’t Abuse your Netflix Account

February 14, 2011 § Leave a comment

About a two weeks ago, I exhausted  the best Christmas present my brother J** has ever given me, “The Wire.” It took me longer than expected to finish the 5-season show because my sister and brother-in-law decided that they loved it too, and now I had to watch it on their schedule. No harm done, however, because having a schedule meant that I could accomplish other things during my day, most important–job hunting.

A couple of weeks ago, I checked out Netflix to see if I could get  a free trial in which I could watch as many tv shows as I wanted. By chance, I discovered that sometime in the past, my father had added my computer to his Netflix account and I could watch as much as I wanted FOREVER.

Don’t make the same mistake I did. Don’t decide to watch the X-Files, from season 1 to 9 (currently on 5) because that was the nerdy part of high school you tried to avoid but would inevitably succumb to later in your adult life.

No matter how much funny shit Mulder says, don’t fall prey to his poker-face delivered jokes.

“Squeeze,” Season 1: Mulder sticking his hand in bile and announcing, “Quick, how do I get this off without betraying my cool exterior.”

“Humbug,” Season 2: Mulder catching Mr. Nutt, the dwarf or little person from “Twin Peaks,” underneath Scully’s trailer:

Mr. Nutt: Just because I’m not of so-called average height does not mean I must receive my thrills vicariously. Not all women are attracted to overly tall, lanky men such as yourself. You’d be surprised how many women find my size intriguingly alluring.

Mulder: You’d be surprised how many men do as well.

Don’t clap and giggle every time The Lone Gunmen appear in an episode.

Try to not become a victim of pop culture, thus feeling amazed when “The Andy Griffith Show” is cross-referenced with an X-Files episode in a quaint town where the villains are inbred monsters–BRILLIANT.

Don’t stay up all night watching the X-Files and then act like you’re 8 and need to sleep with the lights on because you’re too creeped out to fall asleep.

When ants start to crawl into the cracks of your basement room after a rainstorm, don’t think that the infestation automatically assumes X-File status.

Though watching “The Wire” only took an hour or less per day, abusing my newly discovered Netflix account has resulted in two weeks of doing nothing but eating, exercising, and watching the X-Files–oh, and NOT job hunting.

My job-hunting motivation has been equitably slaughtered by Mulder and Scully.

Things I was going to do in the last couple of weeks:

  1. Read The Brothers Karamazov X-Files Season 1
  2. Write two articles for a freelance gig X-Files Season 2
  3. Take the Food Handlers test X-Files Season 3
  4. Look for jobs X-Files Season 4
  5. Finish reading A People’s History of the United States X-Files Season 5

My friends in Wisconsin will be happy to know, however, that I took a break from my FBI fantasies to watch the Packers win the Super Bowl.