My Restaurant Alias

If you attend C2E2 this weekend, be sure to visit Dave Dorman at E-1 in Artists Alley. “E,” as in “Easy-to-Remember” and 1 as in, also easy to remember. (I’ll be there Sunday!)

Ever been waiting to be seated at a crowded restaurant when you heard the hostess yell out a ridiculous name? Yeah, that was probably me. In honor of Mystery Science Theater 3000s new comeback on Netflix, I’ll probably start leaving the name “Tom Servo” with the hostess, but my old standard is Nipsey Russell. This makes me giggle like a 12-year-old schoolboy every time I hear it uttered–loudly–in a busy restaurant foyer. I can’t explain it, but it tickles my ribs. Juuuuust riiiiight.

The Man. The Legend. Also, My Restaurant Alias.

One of my many favorite things about The Simpsons is Bart Simpson’s frequent prank-phone-call-to-Moe’s routine. For your reading pleasure, here they are. (I may have to borrow Ivana Tinkle one of these days…and hopefully, the hostess doesn’t threaten to carve her name into my back with an ice pick…)

Some Enchanted Evening

Bart: Is Al there?
Moe: Al?
Bart: Yeah, Al. Last name Caholic?
Moe: Hold on, I’ll check. Phone call for Al… Al Caholic. Is there an Al Caholic here?
(The guys in the pub cheer.)
Moe: Wait a minute… Listen, you little yellow-bellied rat jackass, if I ever find out who you are, I’m gonna kill you!

Some Enchanted Evening

Bart: Is Oliver there?
Moe: Who?
Bart: Oliver Clothesoff.
Moe: Hold on, I’ll check. (calls) Oliver Clothesoff! Call for Oliver Clothesoff!
(Marge picks up the extension)
Listen, you lousy bum, if I ever get a hold of you, I swear I’ll cut your belly open!

Homer’s Odyssey

Bart: (with Lisa) Is Mister Freely there?
Moe: Who?
Bart: Freely, first initials I. P.
Moe: Hold on, I’ll check. Uh, is I. P. Freely here? Hey everybody, I.P. Freely!
(the customers laugh) Wait a minute… Listen to me you lousy bum. When I get a hold of you, you’re dead. I swear I’m gonna slice your heart in half.

Moaning Lisa

Bart: (with Lisa)
Moe: Yeah, Moe’s Tavern, Moe speaking.
Bart: Is Jaques there?
Moe: Who?
Bart: Jaques, last name Strap.
Moe: Uh, hold on. Uh, Jock… Strap… Hey guys I’m looking for a Jock Strap.
(laughs from all) Oh… wait a minute… Jock Strap… It’s you isn’t it ya cowardly little runt? When I get a hold of you, I’m gonna gut you like a fish and drink your blood.

One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish

Bart: (with Lisa)
Moe: Hello, Moe’s Tavern. Birthplace of the Rob Roy.
Bart: Is Seymour there? Last name Butz.
Moe: Just a sec. Hey, is there a Butz here? A Seymour Butz? Hey, everybody, I wanna Seymour Butz!
(realizes) Wait a minute… Listen, you little scum-sucking pus-bucket! When I get my hands on you, I’m gonna pull out your eyeballs with a corkscrew!

Principal Charming

Bart: (in Principal Skinner’s office) Hello, is Homer there?
Moe: Homer who?
Bart: Homer… Sexual.
Moe: Wait one second, let me check. (calls) Uh, Homer Sexual? Hey, come on, come on, one of you guys has got to be Homer Sexual!
Homer: Don’t look at me!
Moe: You rotten liver pot! If I ever get a hold of you, I’ll sink my teeth into your cheek and rip your face off!
Skinner: You’ll do what, young man?

Blood Feud

Moe(answers the phone) Moe’s Tavern, where the elite meet to drink.
Bart: Uh, hello. Is Mike there? Last name, Rotch.
Moe: Hold on, I’ll check. (calls) Mike Rotch! Mike Rotch! Hey, has anybody seen Mike Rotch lately?
(barflies laugh) Listen, you little puke. One of these days, I’m going to catch you, and I’m going to carve my name on your back with an ice pick.

Treehouse of Horror II

Bart: with Mrs. Krabappel and one of the Sherri/Terri twins
Moe(answers the phone) Moe’s Tavern. … Hold on, I’ll check. Uh, hey, everybody! I’m a stupid moron with an ugly face and big butt and my butt smells and I like to kiss my own butt.
All(laugh)
Barney: Ho ho, that’s a good one.
Moe: Wait a minute…
Bart(hangs up and laughs)

Flaming Moe’s

Moe: (answering the phone) Flaming Moe’s.
Bart: Uh, yes, I’m looking for a friend of mine. Last name Jass. First name Hugh.
Moe: Uh, hold on, I’ll check. (calling) Hugh Jass! Somebody check the men’s room for a Hugh Jass!
Man: Uh, I’m Hugh Jass.
Moe: Telephone. (hands over the receiver)
Hugh: Hello, this is Hugh Jass.
Bart(surprised) Uh, hi.
Hugh: Who’s this?
Bart: Bart Simpson.
Hugh: Well, what can I do for you, Bart?
Bart: Uh, look, I’ll level with you, Mister. This is a crank call that sort of backfired, and I’d like to bail out right now.
Hugh: All right. Better luck next time. (hangs up) What a nice young man.

Burns Verkaufen der Kraftwerk

Moe: Moe’s Tavern, Moe speaking.
Bart: Uh, yes, I’m looking for a Mrs. O’Problem? First name, Bea.
Moe: Uh, yeah, just a minute, I’ll check. (calls) Uh, Bea O’Problem? Bea O’Problem! Come on guys, do I have a Bea O’Problem here?
Barney: You sure do! (everyone laughs)
Moe: Oh… (to phone) It’s you, isn’t it! Listen, you. When I get a hold of you, I’m going to use your head for a bucket and paint my house with your brains!

New Kid on the Block

Moe(answers the phone) Yeah, just a sec; I’ll check. (calls) Amanda Hugginkiss? Hey, I’m lookin’ fer Amanda Hugginkiss. Why can’t I find Amanda Hugginkiss?
Barney: Maybe your standards are too high!
Moe: [to phone] You little S.O.B. Why, when I find out who you are, I’m going to shove a sausage down your throat and stick starving dogs in your butt!
Bart: My name is Jimbo Jones, and I live at 1094 Evergreen Terrace.
Moe: I knew he’s slip up sooner or later! He unsheathes a rusty knife and heads out of the tavern.

New Kid on the Block

(Laura Powers with Bart)
Laura: Hello, I’d like to speak to Ms. Tinkle? First name… Ivana?
Moe: Ivana Tinkle, just a sec. (calls) Ivana Tinkle! Ivana Tinkle! Hey, everybody, put down your glasses. Ivana Tinkle!The PTA DisbandsThis isn’t at Moe’s; Moe is taking over as the substitute teacher for Mrs. Krabappel’s class during the strike
Moe: OK, when I call your name, uh, you say “present” or “here”. Er, no, say “present”. Ahem, Anita Bath?
(laughter from kids)
Moe: All right, settle down. Anita Bath here?
(laughter)
Moe: All right, fine, fine. Maya Buttreeks!
(more laughter)
Moe: Hey, what are you laughing at? What? Oh, oh, I get it, I get it. It’s my big ears, isn’t it, kids? Isn’t it? Well, children, I can’t help that!
Moe runs out of the classroom crying.

Homer the Smithers

Burns: I’m looking for a Mr. Smithers, first name Wayland
Moe: Oh, so, you’re looking for a Mr. Smithers, eh? First name Wayland, is it? Listen to me, you; when I catch you, I’m gonna pull out your eyes and stick ’em down your pants, so you can watch me kick the crap outta you, okay? Then I’m gonna use your tongue to paint my boat!

Bart on the Road

Homer: Hello, I’d like to speak with a Mr. Snotball, first name Eura
Moe: Eura Snotball?
Homer: What? How dare you! If I find out who this is, I’ll staple a flag to your butt and mail you to Iran!

Homer The Moe

(Homer is looking after Moe’s.)
Bart: I’d like to speak to a Mr. Tabooger, first name Ollie.
Homer: (excited) Ooh! My first prank call! What do I do?
Bart: Just ask if anyone knows Ollie Tabooger.
Homer: I don’t get it.
Bart: Yell out “I’ll eat a booger”
Homer: What’s the gag?
Bart: Oh, forget it…

24 Minutes

Ahmed Adoodie

 

Lord, Love a Lefty! Reflections of a Southpaw After National Left-Handers Day

The cultural icon for left-handedness: Ned Flanders of  The Simpsons

God love him, the cultural icon for left-handedness: Ned Flanders of The Simpsons

As a journalist and a publicist at WriteBrain Media, I see the queries from fellow journalists all day long. The hot topic query yesterday was “the Challenge of Living Life as a Southpaw.” Some studies have shown that the 7-10% population of us left-handed people lose up to a decade of our lives due to the stress of being left-handed.

Frankly, it doesn’t compute. I’ve never had a problem cutting with scissors – I just hold them at a weird angle compared to 90% of people. Ain’t no thang. And maybe I take up more of the left margin in my spiral-bound notebooks (those reporter’s notebooks spiral-bound at the top are the bomb!). I don’t write in that hooked fashion, so I don’t experience the pencil carbon smudge on the side of my hand unless I’m doing charcoal sketches. But doesn’t everyone?

Pencil sketch from Cliff Nielsen's art jam. The Brewery, Los Angeles, April 2015.

Pencil sketch from Cliff Nielsen’s art jam. The Brewery, Los Angeles, April 2015.

 

I was raised in a household where my adoptive mother and brother were also lefties, so perhaps that made my life easier. When I finally met my bio-family, I was interested to learn my dad and one brother were left-handed as well (altho’ Catholic school redirected my bio-brother to the Catholic version of political correctness: being right-handed).

From the Middle Ages on down, lefties have always gotten the shaft, but consider this: Call me a conspiracy theory nut, but you know that part in the Bible about Christ being on the right hand of God?

I think it was a typo.

Some right-handed translator got the Aramaic word for “right” mixed up with “left.” This one small typo was perpetuated throughout history, all of the way down to Gutenburg’s Press. This resulted in centuries of left-handed fuckery. Bloodied knuckles being rapped with rulers by Catholic school nuns. Southpaws being tortured and imprisoned for wiping butts with our right hands. It was discrimination of Biblical proportions, literally.

I’d like to think that today, we’re better than this. That there’s no need for social justice, a movement, and a new Twitter hashtag: #Left-HandedLivesMatter. But to know that for certain, does anyone have kids in Catholic school?

The Short-Lived Laughter Moratorium

Throughout my life, I’ve been told by many that my laugh is infectious…and memorable. To witness, I was riding in this crowded Chicago parking garage elevator with my BFF Marovich after comedienne Kathy Griffin’s concert when Marovich–no surprise–made me laugh. A woman’s voice in the way back section of this crowded freight elevator declared, “I’d know that laugh anywhere!” I whipped around, and there was my kindergarten friend Linda, whom I’ve rarely spent time with in our teen or adult lives (I hope to correct this soon), but my laugh lived on in her memory. At my 20-year class reunion, the most frequent comment I got was, “I really miss your laugh.”

I love to laugh more than anything in the world. Well…there’s maybe one other thing, but I digress…

One of the greatest contributors to my expansive sense of humor is my closest cousin, Jeff. His dad and my dad were brothers, both gone now. His dad died in a tragic ultralight crash. We leaned on each other through that, and more recently, my dad’s death. But we’ve shared so many more good times than bad, attending the same high school together, spending our birthdays, holidays, and vacations together. At one point in our careers, we even worked on the same floor of the same company (and WTF were they thinking, hiring the two of us?!?). Prank phone calls, 90-minute lunches, and hijinks ensued. By the time I left there, quotes from Airplane, Blazing Saddles, The Simpsons, and Throw Momma from the Train were viral vernacular, confusing elderly secretaries everywhere.

My cousin Jeff, who makes me laugh to the point of pain.

My beloved cousin Jeff, who makes me laugh to the point of pain, even without surgery.

About once a week, I’ll get that 312 area code call on my mobile phone, and anyone who knows me well can read my face and realize who’s calling. I’m beaming before I even answer the phone. A low voice says, “DeDe…”–my family’s nickname for me–and then I fasten my seat belt and pray for an empty bladder. I know I’m in for some gut-buster travel story, life observation, or David Sedaris book passage.

An obscure quote from Jeff's & my 2nd favorite movie...

An obscure quote from Jeff’s & my 2nd favorite movie…

 

So I somehow forgot to forewarn Jeff, of all people, that my Wednesday surgery meant a moratorium on the comedy for at least 48 hours. I’d gotten word to BFF Marovich and the Sister Wives, but Jeff missed becoming a line item on my black list. Thursday afternoon I saw that 312 area code pop up on the phone, and I braced myself. I couldn’t even cough at that point without some pain. I had refused all pain killers. This was going to be a rough ride.

Since Jeff holds a prestigious corporate job, I won’t divulge here what he said, but it was worth every ounce of post-surgical pain. In fact, I’m still giggling about it. I would never wish surgery on Jeff, but if he has, say, an appendectomy, I’ve got him on speed dial. And I’ve already lined up a very special, belly jiggling David Sedaris quote.

 

Nerd Alert: My Quest for My Beloved Groundskeeper Willie in Miniature LEGO Form

Okay, confession time. I just entered an online contest to win my must-have The Simpsons‘ Groundskeeper Willie LEGO. (I can hear my Sister Wives chortling all of the way from here.) My love for Springfield’s angriest Scotsman knows no bounds. I mean, just look at those abs, will you? I could scrub my lingerie on that washboard! He would look so hot on my desk, next to my two other Groundskeeper Willie action figures:

Missing: 1 Groundskeeper Willie LEGO action figure...

Missing: 1 Groundskeeper Willie LEGO action figure…

It’s Free Comic Book Day today and Batman Day, so hopefully there will be some Simpsons LEGOs still available at my local comic book retailer after all of those crowds. Admittedly, I’m a little nervous.

And after the weight lifting adventures with Marovich the other night, even my Sister Wives are challenging me now to wear my geeky super hero garb out in public – one of the Sister Wives who shall remain nameless had to verify it up close and personal…

Sister Wife Inspector: "Yep, it's definitely an authentic  Wonder Woman tee."

Sister Wife Inspector: “Yep, it’s definitely an authentic Wonder Woman tee.”

If you happen to see a Groundskeeper Willie while you’re out celebrating Free Comic Book Day, buy it and I’ll pay you back. I’d gladly pay you tomorrow for a Groundskeeper Willie today…

The Happy Things I Focus On During Sad Times

I’ve done a fairly good job of keeping my game face on during the impending sad days ahead (and let’s face it, watching one’s beloved father decline daily in hospice is incredibly sad as well). So here’s my Top 10 List of Happy Things I’m focusing on today to keep a smile on my face.

1. Groundskeeper Willie. Those of you who know me know WHY.

My animated love, Groundskeeper Willie.

My animated love, Groundskeeper Willie.

2. The birthday cake my “Sister Wives” had made for me last year. 

Peter Dinklage....

Peter Dinklage….

3. THE STAND by Stephen King. My favorite book of all time by my all-time favorite author.

THE STAND by Stephen King...the greatest book ever written, IMHO.

THE STAND by Stephen King…the greatest book ever written, IMHO.

4. The news that Harper Lee is releasing a 2nd novel. 

The book I cannot wait to read...

The book I cannot wait to read…

5. WGN Morning News – I can always count on them to make me laugh hard at least once every morning:

WGN Morning News Crew - The Funniest in the Biz.

WGN Morning News Crew – The Funniest in the Biz.

6. Bob’s Burgers Valentines, posted today: http://www.buzzfeed.com/annas31/21-hilarious-valentines-only-bobs-burgers-fans-942y?bffb&utm_term=4ldqpgy#.hhePP6LM3

Bob's Burgers Valentines - a Big Bowl of WIN.

Bob’s Burgers Valentines – a Big Bowl of WIN.

7. Rediscovering this photo from my Jamaica trip with my hilarious BFF, who is always making me double over in giggles.

Marovich, Sporty C Spice & Me in Jamaica.

Marovich, Sporty C Spice & Me in Jamaica.

8. This book tattoo, which makes me tempted to get one for the first time in my life (and has several tattooed friends volunteering to go with the world’s biggest chicken shit–me): 

Amazing book tattoo that has me tempted...

Amazing book tattoo that has me tempted…

9. Kim Stover, a terrific teacher, who helps me burn off my stress:

Kim Stover, Founder of Dance It off

Kim Stover, Founder of Dance It off

10. This Jack Kirby meme, which reminds me to never, ever, ever give up:

Jack Kirby Meme

Jack Kirby Meme

 

 

Groundskeeper Willie: My Not-So-Secret Crush

 

 

Dave Dorman's Gifts to Me: Groundskeeper Willie Action Figures & My Cthulhu Easter Figure

The View from My Desktop: Best Hubs Ever Dave Dorman’s Gifts to Me Include Groundskeeper Willie Action Figures & My Cthulhu Easter Toy

Call me crazy–you won’t be the first or last to do so–but my friends were astounded when I revealed my Peter Dinklage crush (and no, I haven’t even begun binge-watching Game of Thrones yet) so the very idea of my crush on The Simpsons’ Groundskeeper Willie character–an animated cartoon man whose very skin tone denotes impending kidney failure–was one of my more surprising revelations. Yet, I urge you to take a moment to consider that Groundskeeper Willie offers women all of these benefits & more:

#1. Red hair (and the right shade of red hair)

#2. Six pack abs / immense physical strength

#3. A Scottish brogue

#4. The ability to do maintenance work and handle power tools with aplomb

#5. Unharnessed abs flashing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9_jIa2WADc

I remember when I first fell for Groundskeeper Willie. It was The Simpsons’ Season 5 episode called “Radio Bart where Sting and Groundskeeper Willie had to save Timmy O’Toole from the well. Sting, my favorite singer, performed “We’re Sending Our Love Down the Well” to raise awareness. It was episodic perfection. The only thing missing was Peter Dinklage.

I am not alone in my fervor for Groundskeeper Willie. Websites all over the world are dedicated to him. Check out this soundboard, and the first clip of Groundskeeper Willie teaching French: “Bonjourrrr, you cheese-eating surrender monkeys!” http://www.soundboard.com/sb/groundskeeper_simpsons_clips

In a perfect world, an animated version of Dave Dorman would battle Groundskeeper Willie for my hand in marriage, and we’d all live happily ever after in Springfield.