Author's posts

You’re Welcome!!

Let’s just get that out of the way right now, because after you finish reading this you’ll be going ‘wow, thanks, moneysmith, this is great. You rock!’ Seriously. You will. Because I have a feeling a lot of us are at the end of our proverbial ropes, which by  now are so frayed they look more like worn-out drawstrings on a pair of ten-year-old sweatpants than the nice, thick, resilient ropes they once were.  

Ready for more? Walk this way (it’s all in the hips, really not that hard) …

Pony Party: Hollywood Calls!

     Straight outta the Big Orange, baby, it’s time for an all new, all the way live Pony Party, complete with a great big welcome hug (and when I say “hug,” I mean “hug,” okay — keep your mitts off the merchandise) because I been missing you ALL like crazy!

   But last week, as you probably heard, there was biz-ness to tend to. As multi-talented, pony-tending partner nocatz explained, Hong Kong called with an offer to finance our newest project, the motion picture version of buhdy’s stunning essay, The Edge of Moistness. Well, okay, they didn’t actually offer, but they did call. Yeah, it was a wrong number – so what? It was like a blind date – I mean, you never know where it might lead, right? Plus, it was a chance to take the Docudharma corporate jet out for a spin, which took a little longer than flying commercial – but hey, it was on the house, so why not? It was actually kind of fun…I’m just not too sure where we are at the moment.

Photobucket

   Before we move on, I have to say, nocatz set the bar pretty darn high with his pony-sitting treks the past few weeks. Who else could take us deep into the untamed wilds of the Arizona desert and then just casually throw in a starring role by a U. S. Supreme Court Chief Justice? Tough act to follow — and I’ll get even with him for that later. But being the responsible, totally grown up, gratification-delaying adult that I am, I did manage to steal a few minutes here and there from my busy jet-setting schedule to work on the much-anticipated screenplay for The Edge of Moistness.

    So far, the credits are done:

    Inspired by a title by buhdydharma.

    Story by: kj, nocatz and undercovercalico.

    Script by: yours truly.)

    Casting is almost complete, too!

    Jack Nicholson IS buhdydharma (Lance)

    With Edward Norton as nocatz (The Dude)

    Sharon Stone as undercovercalico (Samantha)

    Lindsay Lohan as kj (Desiree)

    Plus, a very special guest appearance by Paris Hilton as moneysmith

    (Please feel free to add your own casting suggestions and don’t be shy! No ego too big – that’s our motto! But clearly we need input from some of the PP irregulars – do I need to name names here, people????)  

    All of which brings us to the topic du jour – the four-letter word: LOVE. Question: Have you ever fallen so crazy mad in love that all you could think about was the object of your affection and how incredibly incredible the person is and for like 24/7 your brain resembles a pork chop marinating in an emotional broth of hormones and endorphins that turns the rest of you into some kind of jelly that you’d really like to slather onto places that we aren’t even going to mention because it’s kind of early and some children might stop by?  Nah, me neither. But apparently it happens. Just look at all the songs that have been written celebrating love found and lost, love tripped over, stepped on and squished like a bug. If love didn’t exist, what would musicians write about?? Think of it!!! We would be forced to listen to songs celebrating everyday stuff — the deal we just got on tires at Costco, our new Frosted Strawberry highlights, recipes for pineapple barbecue sauce. See what I’m saying? Everybody wants to wallow in the mud-pit of love, even if they’re wearing their good shoes – just because it’s there! But for some reason, writing about it is … oh, dare I say challenging?  

    For inspiration, I turned to our sponsor extraordinaire, a cherished website that I wouldn’t share with just anyone. But since you people are already known for discriminating taste, sophisticated and nuanced humor, and traffic-stopping good looks — in other words, since you’re just like me – here you go. Introducing the wonderful world of … Longmire! where romance isn’t just another two-syllable word!    

    But even Longmire hasn’t been helping when it comes to really nailing a pivotal scene. And according to the “experts,” we need more than just credits and character names. We need an actual script with scenes, preferably the kind that make people shell out 20 bucks – or whatever a movie ticket costs these days. So here’s what we’ve got thus far. To be honest, it might need just a teeny bit more work. But you all can be the judge:  

FADE IN

Sunset at the trailer park. Water shimmers in a small blue plastic wading pool, which is good because that kind of hides the clumps of dog hair floating near the bottom.

A lone man, LANCE, stands next to the pool, staring toward the horizon. His clothes have seen better days. In fact, he’s seen better days, and apparently quite a few of them. But even time cannot diminish his chiseled features — or the fact that he still has the butt of a 20-year-old in jeans. (Note: may require 18-year-old body double here).

An attractive woman, DESIREE, looking incredibly provocative in a simple $4,000 designer Spandex mini-dress, steps out of the trailer and walks up behind him.

Desire: You’re leaving again, aren’t you, Lance?    

With one eyebrow askance, Lance smiles down at the woman who is clearly putty just waiting to be shaped into something a little more exciting than dough-like cement.  

Lance: Damn straight. What’s it to you, woman?

She turns away from him, trying bravely to hide her tears.  

Desiree: Nothing! Go ahead, leave! But just remember this – I can’t forget you. I won’t – do you hear me? You’re exactly like those little tiny seeds on the Big Mac buns, the ones that get stuck in my teeth for days, and I can’t get them out without a toothpick. If I could find a toothpick for my heart, for my soul, Lance, I wouldn’t care if you left. But so far, I’m shit out of luck, toothpick-wise.

Lance snorts, derisively. (Or, if derisive is too hard, he can just snort.)

Lance: Oh, yeah. Well, you know what, Desi? I feel the same way about you. Ever since I met you, in the men’s room down at the pool hall, I’ve had the same feeling as that night I nailed your friend Samantha at the beach, when you went to get hot dogs, and we got sand …uhhhhh, in places where it’s not supposed to be.

Desiree: What???? What do you mean … where it’s not supposed to be?

Lance: You know …in my underpants.

Desiree: Underpants??? How old are you – six?

Lance: Okay, in my shorts – happy now? Geez!! You’re just like that sand in my shorts – and a toothpick won’t help.

Desiree looks confused.

Desiree: Wait … you slept with Samantha when I was at the concession stand????

Lance: You were gone a pretty long time.

Desiree: They ran out of sauerkraut for your Warsaw Dog, shithead!  

Lance: Whatever! It’s old news. I’m just saying … I still have feely things for you … you’re just like that sand in my shorts.

Desiree: Did it ever occur to you that you could just take a shower and wash your clothes?

Now it’s Lance’s turn to look confused, which he does with ease.  

Desiree: Oh, too complicated for you? Well, maybe Samantha could help out!  

Lance:  Well, uh, yeah — maybe she will. And by the way, you never told me what you were doing in pool hall men’s room at 2 in the morning.  

Desiree: Oh – ummmm (she looks flustered) …. Really, I never told you??? Hahahahaha!! Funny story, actually – but you know, we can talk about it later. Anyway, this is no time for words. Kiss me, you big lug!

    So anyway, that’s where we are so far. Obviously, it’s got a lot going for it, in terms of not too many big words and plenty of space between the lines. But if you see room for improvement, please feel free to share!! And contributions – ideas, dialogue, characters, cash, dog food, etc. – are welcome, too. Remember, The Edge of Moistness is a co-production, which means I’m not taking all the blame for this sucker.

    By the way, you know those rumors – the ones that say Pony Parties are not only educational and informative, but also raise your IQ, whiten your teeth and stimulate new hair growth (but only in places where you want hair to grow)? Sorry, but they’re not true.  Also, please understand one thing: if you rec this, you’re going to be flying on the corporate jet next and it’s going to be one bumpy ride, okay? If you’re dying to hit a Rec button, get your butt over to the esteemed Front Page and check out the Recent and Recommended Diaries. Then come back here and totally blow off the rest of your evening with a bunch of other people who apparently have nothing better to do either. It’ll be fun, in a pathetic kind of way.  

Pony Party: Beat It!

The ponies are here prematurely, but there’s a good excuse (later, promise!). A little emergency here, but no worries — wrangling is being provided by the thoroughly Pony-proof  nocatz. Meanwhile, enjoy the drum circles, bring your own bongos and trust me when I say this will all make sense very soon. Or not. Who knows? KTXLUVYABAI!!

   

Pony Party: Ultra Glamorous Hollywood Edition!

   Lights … camera … drivel! Live from the epicenter of the irrelevant, welcome to a truly over the top, painstakingly styled and blown-out edition of the Post Academy Awards Pony Party! Pour yourself a Kamikaze, watch out for the faux-mink, faux-eyelashes in the bathroom, and try not to put an eye out on the stilettos that are thrown everywhere – why are accessories can be so challenging???

    Anyway, tonight’s utterly devoid of purpose sponsor is none other than the sublimely entertaining blog, Go Fug Yourself – a fun-filled, fashion-slashin’ chronicle of the bad taste and wretched excess that has made Hollywood synonymous with bad taste and wretched excess.  

    But just bookmark the link and look at it later, because we’ve got work to do, people. Last week, our illustrious leader, the one and only buhdydharma, posted an essay with the splendidly evocative title, “The Edge of Moistness.” The essay itself was most excellent, needless to say, although the exact subject escapes me at the moment. But the title … who could forget that piece of wordsmanship??

    Not surprisingly, a few of the local thread monkeys noticed that “The Edge of Moistness” was clearly just begging to be developed into a major motion picture. So we they decided to run with it.

    Based on past pitch meeting experiences, I helped out by “writing” three different scenarios. And may I say, with typical Hollywood humility, that every single one of these babies redefines riveting, while maintaining the hip, edgy attitude that screams “Story???!! We don’t need no stinkin’ story!!” so typical of today’s entertainment.

    Of course, it’s only fair that Dharmizens get “first look” (translation: Hollywood jargon for “you get to see it before anyone else does” – where do they get these crazy terms?). But first, a few things to keep in mind. In Academy Award-winning author William Goldman’s classic book, Adventures in the Screen Trade, he wrote: “In Hollywood, no one knows anything.” That was 25 years ago, and trust me, no one knows anything now either.  

    You’re probably wondering how that could be. Studio executives are paid exorbitant amounts of money. Shouldn’t they know something? Sure, they should. But here’s the problem. Most of them are … well, since the words “young” and “old” are not spoken aloud in Hollywood, the least offensive way to put it is “inexperienced.” Think “wasn’t he parking cars at the Ivy last week?” for the men, or “she’s only had plastic surgery once” for the women, okay? That’s how inexperienced they are.  

    And now, for you doubters, a true story: A few years ago, I was hired to write copy for the Adam Sandler “movie” “Mr. Deeds.” They screened the movie at the studio and then everyone met afterward to talk about marketing direction (a whole other essay). At some point, I mentioned that the film was quite different than the original. Every head in the room swiveled in my direction. Ten or so astonished faces stared at me, incredulous, like I had just announced that I was receiving a transmission from the mothership. (Moral of the story: William Goldman is a genius.)

    The second thing to remember is that Hollywood executives never read more than the first sentence of anything unless someone is holding one or more of their children hostage. To make this possible, there are people here who read for them – they’re called “readers.” (Seriously. Does someone stay up all night coming up with these crazy terms?)

    Anyway, “readers” actually read the scripts and then write “coverage,” which is a page that goes on top of the scripts, kind of like a “cover.” (Don’t look at me, I had nothing to do with it.)

    Being an executive, however, means you don’t even read the coverage. That’s the job of the person in charge “development,” aka the “D girl (or boy).” The D people then summarize the entire script in as few (small) words as possible for the boss. This is how the sales tool known as the “meet” line came into being. The meet line combines the names of two huge box-office grossing movies — say, “Star Wars” meets “Shrek” or whatever, it doesn’t have to make sense. You just want to make it clear to the executive that your idea is not merely commercial, but a chart-busting monster of a mega-hit.

    As all aspiring Hollywood creatives know, you also want to go into a pitch meeting with your own “log line,” a very short description that might appear in the TV Guide “log” to describe a show. Plus, be prepared to do some fast and furious name-dropping in regard to “talent” that you have lined up for your project. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never met your talent or if they couldn’t pick you out of a police line-up. If you know a guy who washed the limo that Josh Brolin took to the studio jet once, then you can say you “know” Josh Brolin and he’s “interested” in your script.

    But enough with the Hollywood 101, it’s time to get this show on the road. Here are the three different versions of “The Edge of Moistness” we’ll be pitching:

The Edge of Moistness: Version One



Log line: “Hogan’s Heroes meets Big Brother”

    After a spectacular, long and involved chase scene, during which any number of objects blow up, a group of incredibly attractive, witty, sophisticated, politically astute bloggers — who all happen to look spectacular in form-fitting, government issued jumpsuits – are rounded up by Homeland Security. Soon, they find themselves living in an isolated “resort” in the countryside — strictly for their own safety! There, amidst the glittering razor wire and dazzling sunsets, they stage a daily “show” for their own amusement. But the cameras relay their antics to the feds’ headquarters, and before long the show has become a huge hit with their captors. And then they escape somehow and reclaim their country. Plus, a couple of them get it on in the bunk beds, which as we all know is just a hilarious experience, so it’s got the humor thing going for it, too.  

The Edge of Moistness: Version Two

Log line: “Gilligan’s Island meets Lost” (Hey, wait just a minute – isn’t Lost just a remake of Gilligan’s Island, minus the goofy humor and evening gowns? Note to self: Has anyone picked the bones of Green Acres yet?)

    After a spectacular, long and involved chase scene, during which any number of objects blow up, a group of incredibly attractive, witty, sophisticated bloggers – all of whom just happen to look unbelievably hot in skimpy swimwear – are marooned on a tropical island where they miraculously find unlimited amounts of fresh water, sunscreen and professional quality make-up. Is the shipwreck part of a plot? If so, could it be the work of the evil tyrant who wants to rule the world? As our heroes explore their inner demons — while rubbing sunscreen all over each other — we come to know their dreams, hopes and aspirations. Plus, several of them get it on in the sand while the sun is setting, and so it’s got a chick-flick aspect going for it, too. And also, much later, kind of toward the end, they escape somehow and save the world.

The Edge of Moistness: NC-17 Edition

Log Line: “Showgirls meets Showgirls 2”

    Chase scene (see above), involving a group of incredibly attractive, witty, sophisticated female bloggers – all of whom are card-carrying members of Mensa and just happen to look spectacular in revealing costumes made entirely of tiny bits of Spandex and a handful of sequins. Our heroines are forced to go undercover as exotic dancers (“deep undercover,” if you get my drift, but it’s for the sake of their country, so cut them some slack, okay?). Complications ensue when one of them falls in love with a possible triple agent who may or may not be the evil twin of the casino owner who … well, is there really any need to go on? By now, I’m pretty sure one of these will have a “green light,” which is Hollywood speak for “go.” (You can’t make this stuff up!)

    Okay, Party People, I’ve done my part. It’s time to for you to step up and embarrass yourselves! Feel free to augment the story lines or add your own. And – most important of all — make casting suggestions for the actor who’s going to play YOU! Then giddy up on over to the star-studded Front Page and Recent and Recommended Essays, where you’ll find a veritable commissary-style smorgasbord of insight, information and thoughtful analysis. When you get tired of pretending to be serious, come on back because the after-party is going to rock!! And remember our motto: If you don’t have anything good to say, pull up a chair right here beside me!  

Pony Party: A Very Merry Unbirthday!

     To me! To me! Now that we all have the theme song from the Mad Hatter’s Unbirthday Party stuck in our heads, you’ll be happy to hear that there’s at least a good reason for it.  Because actually, today really is my birthday. Yes, it’s true — I’m 27 years old. Awww, quit yer snickerin’! Just because I was already 27 once before doesn’t mean I can’t do it again. It was a fun year, and if something is good the first time, what’s the harm in revisiting the good old (but not that old!) days? It’s like an instant replay in sports – only better, because there are no sports involved.  

Okay, now, you’re probably breaking out in a cold sweat just thinking – OMG, A GIFT, I DON’T HAVE A GIFT!!!! No worries!  Just put those platinum cards away! Really, there’s no need to get me a gift. I can’t even think of anything [Aston Martin] I want [Jimmy Choo] or need [Louis Vuitton].

Just kidding! Honestly, I don’t need a single thing. I’m allergic to jewelry (for real!). My car is paid for (and it’ll be celebrating its 21st birthday this summer, so you can buy it a drink then). All my clothes come from vintage stores – known elsewhere as “thrift” shops, but hey, it’s Hollywood – land of embellishment, what do you expect?) And I don’t smoke, drink or do drugs (just high on life!).

        So … aside from being overqualified for the Most Boring Person Ever award, I’m also impossible to buy anything for. But since it’s the thought that counts (right, and this would be on what planet?) here’s a chance to think about giving a virtual gift that probably won’t be forgotten anytime soon. Just visit this week’s un-sponsor – Bad Gift Emporium (http://www.badgiftemporium.com/)- and go nuts! BGE is what I imagine eBay was like when it first started. A few crummy items that people hoped to unload for a couple of bucks. But like all good Pony Party sponsors, BGE doesn’t take itself too seriously. Some of the descriptions are pretty funny (and some are just weird – or both), like (ta da!)

                       Poker Memories Re-enacted By Frogs.

Photobucket

“My best friend gave me this when I moved abroad as a memento of our weekly poker games. It is hideous but the gesture was so sweet, I have kept it for the past three years (hidden in the basement, away from public view).”

   

    Like so many other cherished gifts, this one is available, if the price is right. A word of warning: the BGE website is sluggish, so you might want to just go find a bad gift elsewhere. It’s not like they’re hard to come by!

     Okay, fun’s over (temporarily). Seriously, if anyone is feeling the least little bit generous, I highly recommend making a donation (no such thing as too small) by clicking on the “Rebuild NOLA” link on the right-hand side of the page . Plus, there’s great information on why and how you can do that in these diaries by kj (https://docudharma.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=4154) and Nightprowlkitty (https://docudharma.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=4138). (Apologies to any others I overlooked; please add them in the comments.)    

    If you’re not familiar with New Orleans, don’t understand what all the fuss is about or think Feds are doing an outstanding job on that rebuilding deal in the Gulf (that’s the Gulf in this country, not the other one we’re destroying), you might want to spend some time reading what Gentilly Girl (https://docudharma.com/userDiary.do?personId=1183) and Louisiana 1976 (https://docudharma.com/userDiary.do?personId=1099) have to say about that. (Full disclosure: Former NOLA resident here, best place in the world, imo.)

    Now back to our regularly scheduled nonsense.    

    Okay, the ball’s in your court. The ponies are pawing through six weeks of homework for tonight’s mid-term. Wish us luck, be excellent to each other and don’t forget – there’s the always informative Front Page and a whole bunch of remarkably coherent Recent and Recommended Diaries, where gifting is totally off the table. Enjoy it while you can because most likely I’m going to milk this birthday thing for all it’s worth!  

Pony Party: Mortified, Part Deux

     Welcome to the Second Super Tuesday, Valentine’s Day Pump Priming Pony Party du jour. Show us those purple thumbs (oh, wait – sorry, wrong country). Okay, how about show us your “I Voted!” sticker or a receipt for a Pony Party-approved Valentine’s Day gift (those would be the ones that are NOT from Wal-Mart, Home Depot or Sears) and help yourself to a shot of the Ponies’ 80 proof Primary Antidote!

    Tonight’s special Obamary (or is it Hillama?) edition is brought to you by Bum Wine, for reasons that will become clear later. (We were going to go with the same sponsor as last week – David Nadelberg’s latest book, Mortified: Love is a Battlefield. But when you discover an entire website devoted to wine that the FDA could reclassify as an incredibly bad headache in a bottle, well, there’s just no turning back.)  

    Speaking of our sponsor, you can learn more about such delightful, love-quenching beverages as Thunderbird, MadDog 20/20 and Cisco Red at the website (www.bumwine.com).

    Here’s a tasty little sample: Photobucket

   

Our research shows that Cisco is actually the second best tasting of the five great bum wines, especially if you’re having one of those hankerings for cheap Vodka, Jello and Robitussin.  We must also note that Cisco is the best of all 5 bum wines at putting the darkest and puffiest bags under your eyes.  The nuclear-tinted color of “Cisco RED” is reminiscent of diesel fuel.  Most Cisco flavors are named by the fruit flavor that they are trying to emulate, but one is simply called “RED.”  This chemical disaster will get your head spinning in no time.  

    The sticky, sickeningly sweet taste with a hint of antifreeze really comes through in the repellant taste of Cisco.  Available in various flavors, 375 mL and 750mL sizes.  Down a whole 750 mL and you had better be ready to clear your calendar as you suffer through Cisco’s legendary 2 day hangover.

    Bottom line: Take one (or more!) of these babies home and discover the satisfaction that comes from drinking “wine” that costs less than bottled water and, in  a pinch, can double as paint thinner, lighter fluid or nail polish remover. Think of it as an economic stimulus package in a screw-top bottle!  

Anyway, back to Mortified, with a quick recap from last week: David’s book revisits first loves with diary entries, letters and songs composed by heartsick adolescents caught in the headlights of love’s hormone-blinding glare. At the end of every chapter, in the “Adult Me says” section, the actual authors have a chance to make peace with the past, achieve closure or whatever the current jargon is for “wrap it up.” It was the “Adult Me” blurbs that inspired my own revelation, below.

    And by the way, considering that there are two versions of Mortified – one about adolescence in general and one looking at first loves — I have to hand it to David. Anybody who can claim authorship of two cult favorites that are both mostly written by other people has totally got this writing thing figured out! Way to go, Dave!!    

    But enough about him. Just reading this book made me think about high school and that made me start looking for the Dramamine. As far as I can tell, there are two kinds of people – the ones who loved high school and the rest of us. I hated it. If water-boarding had been an option back then, I would have seriously considered a brief session if it meant no more high school.

What was the problem? Well, first, I was taller than nearly everyone except the guys on the basketball team. Second, as a professional late-bloomer, I spent most of high school known as the person most likely to be Olive Oyl’s stand-in.

    There were about four of us who were girlfriends mainly because we had no choice. First, we were united by our group crush on the dreamy 11th grade math teacher (seriously – what is it about a man who can do quadratic equations in his head?). Plus, there was our shared disdain for the mainstream “cheerleader today, Junior League tomorrow” look – blue eye shadow, pink lipstick and one demure strand of mock pearls.

    We had our own make-up “statement” — red lipstick and neo-Cleopatra-style black ring-around-the-eyeliner. In one photograph, we look like a pack of raccoons that had just ransacked a cosmetic counter. (In fact, looking back at the old photos, I am no longer surprised that my sister got a huge cedar hope chest with all kinds of linens and who knows what, while I was handed a cigar box with a pair of salt and pepper shakers. It was a nice cigar box, but still….)    

    Obviously, my girlfriends and I didn’t have to worry about our phones ringing off the hook. I can’t recall how many Saturday nights the four of us spent together, painting our toenails and writing stunningly bad poetry. But it’s safe to say it happened pretty often.  

Then, one day toward the end of our junior year, Terry appeared. His parents were getting a divorce and he was staying with a relative while the dust settled. Terry was tall enough not to be intimidated by my 5′ 8,” and he didn’t seem to care about the late-blooming deal.

    And there was another BIG plus:  Terry was actually funny and smart, a pretty rare combination in that town. We became such good friends that I even got him to join the Latin Club (talk about hours of fun!) and we spent all our free time at school together. Mostly with me wishing we could be more than friends but pretty much clueless about how all that worked.

 Since the prom was coming up, I thought Terry would be a good date, and figured that the best way to make that happen was to impress him with something unbelievably wonderful and exotic. So one day at lunch, when we were talking about summer and heat and humidity, I casually mentioned that I really didn’t mind because we had a swimming pool.

Just for context, you should know that in this little town, indoor plumbing was not something you could take for granted. Two bathrooms under the same roof catapulted you into the upper echelons of society. A swimming pool — unheard of! So, of course, Terry was impressed.

    Since we lived way out in the country and most kids were too poor to have cars, it never crossed my mind that he might find out the swimming pool didn’t exist. But, of course, he did. A couple days later, somebody drove him and a few other guys out to our house. A half dozen high school boys on the front porch wearing swimming trunks was nothing short of scandalous. To say my parents totally freaked out would put me in the running for the Understatement Hall of Fame. I can’t remember how long I was grounded for – eternity maybe?

    The only good thing was that the school year was almost over, so the mortification was brief. The summer passed in a long, slow agony of groundedness. In the fall, when school started again, Terry was a no-show.  He probably went to live with one of his parents. Although I prefer to think that he was so crushed by our “break-up” that he packed his bindle and hopped a freight, preferring to drown his sorrows in Thunderbird, Cisco or one of our sponsor’s other memorable liquid refreshments, rather than face a lifetime without me and my imaginary swimming pool.

    ADULT ME SAYS: Terry (if that’s your name, I honestly can’t remember for certain), you’ll never believe this, but I have a swimming pool now!! For real. It’s made of blue plastic and has Sesame Street characters on it. The dogs love it!! Hey — don’t laugh. Okay, fine, be a jerk. Hope you’re enjoying the Thunderbird, loser.

    The ponies have class in a few hours and are pretty distracted, so don’t expect any coherent replies. (And if that’s what you came here for, you’ve obviously never been to a Tuesday night PP.)  Giddy-up on over to the amazing Front Page and Recent & Recommended Diaries, where there are no teen-age boys in swim trunks and the wine bottles have corks and there’s even synapses between the brain cells. Oh … there’s not?  Well, in that case, just stay here, be excellent to each other and try not to break anything.    

 

Pony Party: Mortified!

     Welcome to an intensely romantic, tingly all over, pre-Valentine’s Day edition of Pony Party, during which we gaze deeply into each other’s eyes — and whoever blinks first buys the next round. That’s fair, isn’t it? Especially since we’re exploring that vast, uncharted, explosive-laden territory called “love.” (Actually, I’m pretty sure that’s where the “Abandon all hope, ye who enter here” sign was supposed to go. Shouldn’t it at least be displayed at both places?)  

    Tonight, Pony Party is brought to you by Mortified: Love is a Battlefield by David Nadelberg. David’s earlier book, Mortified: Real People. Real Words. Real Pathetic., dredged up the pain of adolescence with actual quotes from diaries, essays and letters.

mortified

    Love is a Battlefield narrows that perspective. The book is an ode to love gone bad, a celebration of defeat, disgrace and dashed hopes that are the essence of first love. (In fact, recalling those disastrous days just makes me wonder – why are we so dogged in our pursuit of an emotion that never fails to turn around and bite us where it hurts most?  Isn’t this like insisting on repeatedly flying in an airplane that was specifically designed to crash and burn? But I digress….)

    Based again on diary entries and love letters, Mortified covers “the boundlessly embarrassing topic of childhood love … unrequited crushes, awkward hookups, odd celebrity infatuations and all manner of romantic catastrophes.”

    Hilarious doesn’t do this book justice – here’s just a teeny tiny little copyright-infringement-free sample:

             

“Introducing Live Evil: Laurent Martini

              Least Likely to … Roll with His Safety On

I was launched to sink. I was short and fat and had braces and huge glasses. My desperate desire to be cool was most likely only surpassed by my extreme desire to have a girlfriend. Knowing that my looks put me at an insurmountable disadvantage, I decided that the only way to achieve my goal was to become a rock star and form the greatest metal band ever: LIVE EVIL.”

Fueled by a fixation on Motley Crue, and with inhibitions smothered in Jack Daniels and Bailey’s Irish Crème (gak!), Laurent created more than 100 songs, including: “Blame it on the Booze,” “Shot of Jack,” and “Shit for Brains.” Yet, mysteriously, both love and rock stardom remained elusive. Now older and wiser, Laurent has at least come to terms with the failure of his bad-boy rocker dream:    

“The only drawbacks? My upper-middle class upbringing in the San Francisco Marina District, elite private French schooling, and the fact that I was too lazy to actually form the band.”

Of course, all good things come to those who wait, and Laurent demonstrated that some old adages are not complete crocks. He did find a woman and get married. And although that proved to be a short-lived state of bliss, he also got around to the rock band part of his dream. Sadly, it’s … well, I’m going to refrain from commenting. You can experience it for yourself at www.lifeevilrocks.com.  

Laurent’s Live Evil saga is just one of many heart-throbbing tales in Love is a Battlefield. It would be remiss not to mention chapters like Marnie Pomerantz’s “Hot for Teacher,” “My Life as a Biker Babe” by Jane Cantillon and Johanna Stein’s priceless tribute to Led Zeppelin, “Stairway to Winnipeg.” In fact, other than a couple of truly weird ones, the entire book is a hoot.  

    Please, do your Valentine a favor and buy Love is a Battlefield, or at least get it from the library. But do not rec the Pony Party. The ponies are all weepy and their mascara is running from remembering their own adolescent heartbreaks, so get off their backs, okay? Record your own lovesick childhood foolishness in the comments (we won’t laugh, promise! ha ha ha). Then be excellent to yourself and giddy-up on over to the esteemed Front Page and Recent and Recommended Diaries, where there are serious people discussing important issues without bursting into tears and wondering how that bottle could be empty already and if the package store delivery service is still available. Pass me a tissue, would you please?  

UPDATE: The ponies are dragging me off the class. Be back later. Don’t make a mess while I’m gone, you hear? Love you!    

Pony Party: Coming Up Lame!

     A great big Hollywood-style, cleavage-flashing welcome, Pony Party People, from both me and my very newest BFF, the legendary Miss Carmen Electra (save the snide remarks, okay? Without her there’s not going to be a whole lot of cleavage going on, so just be nice, you hear?). Tonight’s very special pre-Valentine’s Day edition of the Pony Party is brought to you by Carmen’s latest venture, the “Electra-Pole Professional Pole Kit,” which combines just two of her many talents — dancer and an “expert in seduction” – in one exciting product!  

    Right about now, you’re probably wondering, “Just how exciting is it?” Well, according to the press release:

   

“It’s the first professional dance pole designed for use in the home.”

    Pretty great, huh? In fact, they could stop the sales pitch right there, if you ask me, right after the words “professional dance pole.” Because here’s something we can probably all agree on – those amateur poles are just not happening. And now, thankfully, those days are over!  

    So far, so good. But wait … there’s more! Just in case you’re not convinced yet, the British distributor, Peekaboo Palace, has come up with the Five Big Reasons to Buy.  

1.   “Ready to unleash your inner sexiness?”   (Oh, hell, yeah — who isn’t?)

2.   “Perform any kind of move, like spins and flips and even inverts.”  (Excellent, I been waiting to cross those off the To Do list.)

3.  It “goes up and down” in a mere five minutes.  (A personal favorite — no more time wasted on account of pesky set-up problems with those amateur poles.)

4.    Perfect for experts and beginners, too, the Electra-Pole will have you “dancing and spinning around with more basic moves as you find your pole dancing feet.” (Feet? Pole dancing is about feet? Okay, if you say so.)

5.    “It will help you get the body of your dreams today!” (First thought – somebody’s been hitting the hyperbole bottle pretty hard. But who knows? Maybe it really depends on what body you’re dreaming about.)  

     

Pony Party: You Want to What???

     Welcome to a very special edition of Pony Party, brought to you by the losers at the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), who currently have nothing better to do than hang around a horse barn. Normally, we would still be basking in the reflected glow of the overdressed ordeal celebrating professional incest known as the Golden Globe Awards. But nooooo – the HFPA had to cave in to a bunch of writers!  

    Seriously, HFPA members, have you ever met a writer — or even seen one in person?  They’re a bunch of weirdos who spend all their time thinking about serial commas, gerund phrases and reflexive pronouns. What are you afraid of – that they might give you a paper cut? Throw a pencil at you? Spell your name wrong? Here’s a clue: the word “writer” comes from the Old Norse “haukur dorgeirsson guðlaugsson” which translates loosely as “spends all day in pajamas pretending to work.”

     Anyways, we’re not intimidated by a bunch of good-for-nothing writers around here, so on with the show! This week’s topic: Necessity really is the mother of invention. Out of necessity, I have decided to invent something that makes it impossible for the human brain to recognize specific phrases. Example: Mine will be programmed not to hear “blind date” or its euphemisms — “There’s someone you should meet,” “I think you’ll really like him,” or the kiss of death — “You two are perfect for each other!” When these phrases are spoken, my brain will just go blank, not that that’s unusual, but lately hearing people speak these words has made my hair stand on end, and to be honest, it’s just not a good look for me.

    Back story: I’m at home, quietly minding my own business (probably staring at the wall or something equally exciting), when my friend Casey calls and says there’s someone she wants me to meet (down, hair, get down!). First of all, Casey is on husband number four, and these two could teach Whitney and Bobby a few things about domestic disputes, so clearly this part of her “Operation Misery Loves Company” effort. Plus, having been down Blind Date Street a few times before – and having gotten car-sick every single time — I go all girly on her and burst into tears.

    “Oh, come on!” she says. “He’s different!” (Note: “different” in this context should not be interpreted to mean anything. It’s just a distraction designed to keep the listener from crying even harder.)

    “He’s sophisticated, great sense of humor, and I’m pretty sure he’s not an axe murderer.” That Casey — what a wit! Well, okay, but could we talk on the phone first?

     

Pony Party: Now Who Looks Like a Dope?

     Welcome to the Pony Party Special Hands-Free Edition, brought to you tonight by Dr.  Phil, for so astutely diagnosing Britney Spears as being “in dire need of help.” Thank you, Dr. Obvious. The guys down at the tractor pull were saying this last year, and the four-year-old next door phoned it in way before you did. But the good news is you’re now a leading contender for the first annual Bill “Diagnosis by Video” Frist Award for practicing medicine without any apparent medical knowledge.

    And now, without further ado, we present a very special Pony Party segment — “Now Who Looks Like a Dope?” complete with re-creations from the Los Angeles Chapter of the Archives of Overhead Cell Phone Conversations.      

Pony Party: How Low Can You Go?

Greetings from the land that substance completely forgot (Southern California!) and welcome to the Pony Party Special “How Low Can You Go?” New Year’s Day edition. Brought to you tonight by DoodyDude (www.doodydude.com), because – given the subject matter and the author — it just seems fitting to link to a company devoted to shoveling sh*t. (Have to admit, though, it seems that I can still be shocked – there’s an Association of Professional Animal Waste Specialists — WTF??? Would it be redundant to say “holy crap” at this point?)

Pony Party: Let’s Get It On!

There’s music at NOCATZ’s Pony Party!! And he’s giving away free money, too! PLUS, THERE’S PUPPIES EVERYWHERE — ADORABLE, CUDDLY WUDDLY LITTLE DOGGERS, FREE TO THE FIRST 100 VISITORS! QUICK, THEY’RE GOING FAST!!!    

Greetings from Ground Zero for all things silly and superficial (aka, Hollywood), and welcome to the Pony Party Totally Augmented Edition, brought to you by the “30 Minute!! Breast Enlargement” (Great Financing Available!), which I am so not making up.  (Note to doctor: thanks for the bulk mail postcard offering your services, but I’m gonna pass. Small quibble: not sure how many anatomy classes you missed in medical school, but re: the “scarless, soft, natural” breasts you’re offering – those are already standard equipment on all the Double X chromosome models. Just thought you should know…)  

Burning Pony Party Question du Jour – forget that time’s running out on the annual epidemic of madness, honoring the holy trinity of Visa, MasterCard and American Express, during which otherwise sane people part with way, WAY more money than they should and spend the next eleven months looking for a country that has no extradition treaty with the U.S. regarding consumer debt.  

Let’s get right to the good stuff – New Year’s Eve, baby! This entire year has pretty much sucked big time. Just like many of those before it. So how about something different? Something – hmm, what’s that word? Starts with an “FU”-no, not that one, the one you never hear anymore. Oh, yeah, FUN!

You know you want it! Even if you can’t remember what it feels like to laissez les bon temps roulez! So let’s get busy, party people. Let’s put aside our pathetic pleas for justice and begging for an end to torture and wiretaps. Take a deeeeeeeep breath, and exhale. Good! Now visualize the Republicans (and a pretty good chunk of Democrats) where they belong — featured on “America’s Most Wanted: Multiple Felonies with No Plea Bargains Allowed Special Edition”! Feel the tension fall away as your jaw finally unclenches and your hair stops standing on end. Very nice!

Now let’s keep it going by indulging in a little fantasy: If you could spend New Year’s Eve partying — guilt-free, with no regrets and no need to hire a good defense attorney afterward — with anyone on the planet, who would be the lucky person?

Giddyup! And remember: Do not rec the Pony Party (Seriously, you were going to rec this??? How drunk are you? Give me the car keys right now, okay?) Just divulge your innermost fantasies for December 31 and begone with you, while I snicker over your choices stand in awe of your outstanding taste. The critically acclaimed Front Page awaits, with late-breaking news, insightful analysis and actual substance, none of which you’re in danger of finding here