Two Fun Shows Next Week

Now that everyone has recovered from the relaunch of Relationshapes, I want to tell you about two fun shows next week:



Hello everybody,

I’m happy to say that my comic RELATIONSHAPES — the only comic made exclusively for the Modern Woman — is now appearing on The Hairpin, the premiere web site for ladies.

Jamba Juice

Blog reader SM sends along this piece about my old nemesis, Jamba Juice:

The Jamba Juice website highlights its “natural energy from nutritious ingredients.” Yet it’s actually impossible to get a smoothie made with a base of plain old real milk: Only soy milk can be substituted for the frozen yogurt and sherbet in the “classic” smoothies, and the light smoothies are all made with a mysterious “dairy base” that contains the artificial sweetener Splenda.

Remember, guys: You can make your own smoothies at home! It’s easy and healthy.

Oscars Liveblogging, Part II

You know what? The Oscars are boring. I’m quitting my liveblog. Sorry guys … I just can’t get into the Academy Awards this year. I’ll see you soon … on the BORING carpet.

Oscars Liveblogging, Part I

9:29 PM Nominees for Best Supporting Actor by a Man: Christian Bale, “The Fighter” / John Hawkes, “Winter’s Boring” (gotta see he was pretty bad-ass in this movie) / Jeremy Renner, “The Town” (would his character win in a fight against John Hawke’s character? That would be a good fight. / Mark Ruffalo, “Oh, Those Crazy Kids!” / Jeffrey Rush, “The King Who Wouldn’t Shut Up.” And the best actor in America this year is ……. CHRISTIAN BALE, the ultimate fighting machine!!! He has a big beard tonight. Maybe it’s his “lucky beard.” Will somebody throw a shoe at him? I think he’s a controversial figure in Hollywood, because he screams at people on movie sets like a maniac, and also, he’s from a country that isn’t America, maybe it’s England. Ooh, he just plugged somebody’s blog! (Probably the guy he portrayed in “Fighting Boxers.”) I really liked Christian Bale in Rescue Dawn, by Werner Herzog. Damn, I just realized “The Fighter” is winning awards tonight! I guess it really “came out swinging like a boxer.”

9:23 PM Now they’re gonna do a musical number, I guess. Anfernee Hardaway is singing a song. Man, I think I don’t understand pop culture anymore. Sometimes I look at my television, and I’m like, “What madness be this?” And now James Franco is dressed like Marilyn Monroe. Now hear comes the sexiest lady on earth — HELEN MIRREN — and the least sexy man on earth — RUSSELL BRAND. Best foreign-language film: Biutiful / Dogtooth (heard I’ve gotta see this one / missed one / Incendines(?) / Outside the Law. And the best foreign country is: DENMARK! For “In a Better World.” And now the king of Denmark is making a speech: “Ladies and gentlemen of America, thank you for this honor. America drools, Denmark rules. Prepare for the coming Age of Denmark. We will crush you like the bugs that you are. Death to America, hooray for Denmark. The End.” THE GREATEST ACCEPTANCE SPEECH EVER!!! I finally have Oscar fever!!!

9:16 PM Best Original Screenplay is up next! Life-Something-Or-Other / The Fighter / Inception (aka “Exposition Explosion”) / The Kids Are On Drugs / The King’s Speech. And the best screenplay ever written is ………. THE KING’S SPEECH! (This movie is gonna kick ass tonight, that’s what I think. It’ll win all the awards, or at least 2% of them.) So basically, this screenwriter is about to give a speech about his movie that he wrote about a royal king who couldnt’ speak English so they hired Helena Bonham Carter to teach him vocabulary or something, I truly don’t know because I don’t see boring movies about “Your majesty”-this and “Old times were so interesting”-that. Good speech. I would rather see a movie called “The Guy Who Wrote ‘The King’s Speech”s Speech.”

9:15 PM He’s totally ignoring the orchestral “Shut Up Music.” I like the cut of this guy’s jib. Keep talking, keep growing, keep writing Mr. Sorkin, America officially loves you now! Please rejoin Scientology.

9:13 PM Here comes Best Adapted Screenplay! 127 Hours / Social Networks / Toy Story 9 / True Grit / Winter’s Bone! And the winner is … AARON SORKIN for FACEBOOK 2000!!! First Academy Award for Mr. Sorkin (aka “Chatty Dialogue Guy”). is this the guy who left Scientology and the New Yorker wrote an article about him?

9:05 PM And the awards for best feature animated movie: How to Train a Dragon / The Illusionist (old-school animation, looks good) / Toy Story 3 (odds-on favorite, I think) / and that’s it? Only three nominees? Oh well. The winner is: Toy Story 3. Another Oscar for Pixar Cartoons, the people who make cartoons with computers and good solid storytelling chops and have all the money. Why is this guy thanking Steve Jobs? Is Apple Computers involved in Pixar? I tell you, sometimes I just can’t keep up. I should read more. I mean, I read, obviously, but maybe I need to read more things about the movie business and the computer business, because I think they’re getting more connected.

9:04 PM I think it would be fun to make an animated movie with a bunch of crazy people and then win an Oscar.

9:01 PM Here come Mila Kunis and Justin Timberlake, from “The Black Swan.” Wait I don’t think Justin Timberlake was in the Black Swan. They’re here to present an award for “Best Animated Cartoon of All Time.” Now they’re doing a tribute to Shrek, the first animated movie in Academy history. Sorry, this is for best animated SHORT film, not regular-length cartoon movie. Is it just me, or is this Oscars show not really flowing very well? Winner: “THE LOST THING!!!” Best animated short. It’s two guys accepting the award. One is short and one is tall. I am verrrry bored right now. Guess I haven’t yet caught “Oscar fever.”

8:57 PM Melissa Leo was amazing in “Frozen River,” so I’m glad she won this year. We are in a very loose, free-form comedy Oscars vibe right now. Kirk Douglas flirting with Melissa Leo! (This actress took out ads about how she did a good job in her movie and everyone should vote for her and all the haters were like, “Oh, that’s so gauche.” Really? Get over it, it’s just Hollywood dreams, people! Everybody’s gotta take out their own ads in the trade publication of life.) This speech has some awkward silences. I think she’s gonna get cut off soon by the orchestra … Not sure what to say about that speech. I guess it was pretty good.

8:51 PM Back from commercials. “Hey we gotta pay the bills.” Next up, a living legend: Kirk Douglas. Standing O poppin’ off real hard right now. Everybody rises for Hollywood royalty, and among royalty, Kirk Douglas is king. He looks and sounds pretty old. I think he had plastic surgery of the face. He’s making people laugh with his jokes. But I’m having a hard time understanding him. Oh, he’s doing best SUPPORTING ACTRESS! Amy Adams is nominated for “Hardcore Punch-Fighter.” Helana Bonham Carter is nominated for “The King’s Speech,” Jackie Weaver nominated for “Animal Kingdom” (which I heard is awesome and I want to see it since I saw so much Oscar-nominated junk this year), Melissa Leo for “The Karate Fighter Of Madness,” and Hailey Steinfeld(?) for “True Grits Taste Delicious, You Better Eat ‘Em and Do Your Dishes.” And the winner is … wait for it … a little joke first … a cane-related joke that was genuinely surreal … and now, the winner is … he’s killing it, actually … a good pay-off for Kirk Douglas … the winner is: MELISSA LEO!!! Fuck yeah!!! I knew those ads would pay off! Fuck all the haters!!!

8:47:30 PM The winner just took a big breath. It sounded nice. He’s got a raspy voice. He sounds like conspiracy radio host Alex Jones. Could it be Alex Jones? Alas, no, it’s some guy. But he gets points from me for thanking his “union crew.” I wonder if we’ll hear a lot of union shout-outs tonight, given what’s going on in Wisconsin, and given the fact that lots of people in Hollywood are in unions, like the writers union and the actors union. (Am I blowing your mind with how much I know about Hollywood right now?)

8:47 PM Next up: Cinematography. Oscar goes to INCEPTION for best cinematography. Really? I think I don’t understand what cinematography is.

8:46 PM Okay, he didn’t call Burton a genius, he said something about the “wacky world of Tim Burton,” which I found appropriately condescending.

8:45 PM If this Alice in Wonderland winner calls Tim Burton a “genius” I will eat my blog on butter-fried toast. The winners seem emotional, overwhelmed. A humble pair, true in their craft of art direction and set decorator and who-knows-what-the-fuck-else these people do.

8:44 PM The nominees are fantasy movies and old-timey movies. Oscar = Alice in Wonderland. Okay, kill me now. This is gonna be the worst Oscars of all history.

8:43 PM And now, a tribute inside the Gone With the Wind tribute: It’s a tiny tribute to “Titanic,” by James Cameron. Guys, what’s going on? I can’t tell what’s up. Are the Oscars already broken? WTF is happening. Oh, I get it: This was all a build-up to the nominees for Best Art Direction.

8:41 PM And now, a tribute to “Gone with the Wind,” a famous movie about a crazy lady who lived on a plantation(?) and the man who couldn’t frankly give a damn about her. Wait, was that a tribute? What just happened? Now Tom Hanks is talking about Gone With the Wind, which was a historical Oscar-winner. I have NO IDEA what is happening right now.

8:40 PM Now they got some moms making jokes about the hosts. James Franco is giving props to his grandma. Everyone claps! Marky Mark joke in the house! Lesbian joke in the house! “tonight we will honor the great films and talents.” I’ll drink cocaine to that!

8:39 PM I like Anfernee’s dress. It looks like a WWE belt. Now they’re talking about how James Franco got nominated for an Oscar award. He’s being silly right now, which is why we call James Franco, “Kid Weirdo.”

8:38 PM Here are our hosts for the evening: James Franco and Anfernee Hardaway. They both look great. But no standing ovation??? What is wrong with you, America? Stand up when the hosts enter the room.

8:37 PM My eye itches.

8:34 PM Start the awards! This tomfoolery is taking too long. I want to see some gowns and glitz and gimlets! Does this long-ass skit mean they’re won’t be a musical number??? Now we’re in a Black Swan parody, which is already twenty times better than that P.O.S.* movie. (*”Piece of S.”)

8:33 PM Now the actors are inside the movie called “The Fighter,” which is nominated for an award of some kind.

8:32 PM Live from Hollywood, it’s the Academy Awards of America!!! Now they’re showing some movie satire films. It’s a comedy showcase featuring lots of actors and actresses … even famous names of comedy. Are you watching this? I can’t really explain it.

8:31 PM They’re showing clips from a bunch of movies. I bet it’s the movies that were nominated this year.

8:30 PM The Oscars have started!!! It’s a night of Hollywood dreams, of glitz, glamour and glam … and I am ready to liveblog the living fuck out of it.

8:03 PM Well, it turns out the Oscars don’t start until 8:30 PM EST. I’ll see you then. Until then, see you on the red carpet!

8:00 PM And the Oscar for Best Liveblog goes to … ME. Let’s do this.

Red Carpet Liveblogging, Part I

7:30 PM Okay, that’s it for red-carpet liveblogging. Official liveblog starts at 8:00 PM EST.

7:28 PM I’m simply overwhelmed with jealousy with all these gowns. Some of them look like they have sequins or sparkles! “What will they think of next, in Hollywood’s gown factories?”

7:27 PM Everybody looks amazing — beautiful, handsome, and healthy! And the gowns. Ladies and gentlemen, how much do we love these gowns? “I guess angels are real,” that’s what I say whenever I see a beautiful Hollywood person in one of their gowns.

Motorcycle Mayhem

Reader R sends along this note:

The attached banner ad reminded me of good times reading Filing Technique so I thought I’d pass it on.

I love motorcycles in offices:

Artisanal Pencil Sharpening Book

I’m happy to say that my book “How to Sharpen Pencils,” a practical guide and manifesto, will be published by Melville House in Spring 2012.