Central Snark


A Plan To Revitalize Something Other Than the Economy.
Tuesday, 5 February 2008, 8:59am
Filed under: crummy letters

With the American dollar plummeting, the US government is desperately seeking a way to turn the economy around and stop the country’s potential slide into an obscurity rivaling that of Belgium, or even Canada. The latest plan, as you have likely heard, is to send every American a “tax rebate” check from anywhere between 300 and 1200 dollars, trusting that Americans will continue their longstanding tradition of pretending the money is on fire and forking it over to the nearest retailer as soon as (or, better, before!) it comes into their possession.

As with most government plans, this is of course an enormous steaming pile of B.S. Since when does making more of something increase its worldwide value? Imagine for a second if the price of diamonds suddenly started a worldwide freefall. Do you think the DeBeers company’s first recourse would be to open a few dozen of its scores of warehouses filled with blood-encrusted diamonds and start polishing them up to sell them off? Of course not. The diamonds would have already been cleaned of any bloodstains long before they went into the warehouses.

But that’s beside the point. In short, printing up 150 million more American dollars to flood the marketplace isn’t going to cause a mass worldwide stampede to acquire American bills as if they are collector’s items. If things stay the course, America is going to become like Mexico or somewhere where they use trillion dollar bills to hold their used chewing gum. So, I have devised an alternative plan. If the US is going to fall behind in the value of its dollar, it needs to take the lead in some other area where it has traditionally lagged behind.
This area is, of course, the alcoholic content of its beer.

Back in the good ole’ days of the 1990’s, when one American dollar could be exchanged in Canada for six whole beaver pelts, people in border states could drive to Canada and get more drunk for less money. Now, Americans are stuck with a weak dollar AND weak beer, so it costs more money to drown their sorrows about how weak the dollar is and how poor they’ve become. IT’S A VICIOUS, SELF-PERPETUATING CYCLE!

Since the issue of the weak dollar is left in the hands of incompetent bureaucrats (all together now: “As opposed to?”), it’s time for the domestic beer companies to step up, do their duty as Americans, and make a positive change. I demand more alcohol in American beers! Rather than having to purchase 5 expensive Molson Canadians and help fund a moose habitat or something, I want to purchase 4 cheaper Miller Lites and help the Brewers sign a left-handed reliever. And I want to get at least as drunk as I would have with the Molson’s! Rather than purchase 10 Paulaners to get completely plastered and likely bankroll another Nazi takeover of Germany*, I want to purchase only 8 Budweisers so that maybe the city of St. Louis will patch an extra pothole or two in their highways, because, good God, have you even tried to drive through that damn city?!?

The horse is out of the barn. The value of the dollar is plunging. It’s out of our hands. America has been an economic world leader for decades, and that time is passing. It’s instead time to set an example for the world in Affordable Drunkenness © (a term which I have just copyrighted). This is what our great historical figures would have wanted. The Washingtons. The Jeffersons. The Roosevelts. The Kennedys.

Especially the Kennedys.

*Some people will argue that not all major corporations or political figures in Germany are closet Nazis. These people are wrong.

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This post brought to you by CrummyJoel (who really actually almost never drinks) and humor-blogs.com

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I have $12.48 that says you never saw me at this sports bar…
Tuesday, 29 January 2008, 8:47am
Filed under: crummy letters, funny...

Oh, hello Susan. Fancy meeting you here. I had no idea that you were such a huge fan of the American sporting scene. Yes, I also thought that I would be working late this evening and unable to make it home until much later. Lucky me, to be able to spend this time among friends at such a quality establishment. Yes, my wife is fine, thanks for asking.

Speaking of my wife: I have $12.48 in my pocket that says you never saw me at this sports bar.

Before you decline my offer of $12.48 in exchange for your silence on the matter of my presence in this sports bar when conversing with my wife, allow me to delineate some of the ways that you might find this $12.48 useful in your everyday life:

1. This $12.48 could purchase you eleven double cheeseburgers from the value menu at your local fast food institution, plus leave plenty of money left over to pay the sales tax and possibly leave a tip. It’s a little known fact that most fast food workers appreciate tips as much as their counterparts in the sit-down dining world. Susan, wouldn’t you like to make a fast food workers day? This seemingly insignificant sum of $12.48 would allow you to do that very thing.

2. If you were able to find a similar sum of $12.48 and pair it with the $12.48 that I am currently offering you, you would be but four small pennies away from purchasing a $25.00 gift card to the retailer or restaurant of your choice. Did you know, Susan, gift cards do not have to be given as gifts? It is a perfectly legal recourse to purchase a gift card and use it on oneself! Imagine the entire universe of possibilities that would open up to you, if only you had this seedling of $12.48 that I am currently scrounging through my pockets in order to piece together!

3. A Pez lunchbox. I am, regrettably, unable to provide you with enough of a nest egg to compensate for shipping charges on said lunch box. You could, however, utilize the “search” function on any popular auction website and possibly find a less expensive lunchbox, one where this $12.48 will provide both for the lunchbox and for your shipping charges.

4. This $12.48 could be used approximately five-and-a-half times on the toll road in Oklahoma named the “Cherokee turnpike”, assuming of course that you were to enter said turnpike at Flint Creek and exit once it met with Interstate 69. Susan, if you are planning a trip to Oklahoma, you should be aware that some of their highways are toll roads. There is nothing worse than requiring change to continue one’s journey and finding oneself without said change. The toll road collectors are quite strict about collecting their tolls. It’s their very job description! This $12.48, which I have nearly completed assembling, would be an excellent insurance against having to end a trip to Oklahoma prematurely.

5. Buskers, Susan. How many times have you walked down the sidewalk and been graced with a rousing rendition of “Oh Susanna” or “Jimmy Crack Corn” and it has made your day a brighter day? Did you realize that these people do not get paid for their street-side performances? Not one dime! These people are relying on the good graces of ordinary citizens like you and I to make their music-making worthwhile. Susan, how would you like to live in a world without buskers? I thought not. With this $12.48, which I am in the process of finding out is made up of considerably more coins than it is bills, you could be sure to have enough spare change to do your part to ensure that we never have a busker shortage in our fair city. Will you do your part, Susan? Will you take this $12.48?

In conclusion, Susan, I am offering you the potentially life changing sum of $12.48 in exchange for your silence, when in conversation with my wife, and the matter of my being at this sports bar on this particular evening comes into play. Allow me to count it out for you.

…Twelve forty three. Twelve forty four. Twelve forty five. Twelve forty six. Twelve forty seven.

Twelve forty seven. That appears to be all that I have.

Susan, I have $12.47 on this bar table that says you never saw me at this sports bar. Allow me, if you will, to delineate the benefits of having this $12.47…

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This post brought to you by CrummyJoel and the folks at humor-blogs.com

If you’re the random guy whose picture we stole via a Google image search, please let us know and we’ll replace the picture with some other random guy from a Google image search.



So wait…I wasn’t supposed to use the same password at every website I visited??
Tuesday, 22 January 2008, 9:15am
Filed under: crummy letters, funny...

Now you &*%-ing tell me.  Geez.Well, dammit, thanks for telling me now. Don’t you think it’s a little last minute to give me this information now?? Now that my Amazon password has been stolen and $783.57 worth of Broadway soundtracks has been rung up on my American Express?? Don’t you think I could have used this little nugget of information beforehand?!?

I mean, if I saw you pumping gas with your car running AND you were smoking a cigarette, I would certainly say something. I wouldn’t wait until you were incinerated into fiery little pieces along with the gas station and everyone and everything else nearby. I would tell you as soon as I noticed you. As a precautionary measure.

But nooooooo. NOW is the time you choose to tell me that I shouldn’t use the same password at every single online destination. Now that someone has purchased 13 speedometers to 1975 Ford Thunderbirds using my Ebay and Paypal accounts. Now that someone has posted a banner ad for a toe-sucking fetish website on my blog. Now that someone has withdrawn me from my college and enrolled me in a diesel mechanic’s school in Morocco. I can’t go to Morocco for evening classes! Do you even know how far away Morocco is?!?

How the hell was I supposed to see into the future? How was I supposed to know that if someone accidentally stumbled onto my password ONCE it would mean my entire life would be ruined? How was I supposed to know how many different organizations would require a phone call or a hand-written letter (now that my email has a brand spankin’ NEW password that I don’t have the luxury of knowing)? Do you realize that I can’t buy a car now because my credit is shot? Do you realize that my house is for sale?!? I didn’t put my house up for sale. But there’s a picture of it online…and now there’s a real estate agent pounding a sign into my front yard as I type this.

Well, $#!t.

The best part is that I can’t even recall all the different websites I’ve visited in the last 10 years. I can’t cancel the accounts I don’t even remember! So instead I have had to cancel all of my credit cards. My credit blows so hard they won’t let me have new ones so now I have to pay with everything with cash only, which is mighty damn difficult to obtain when your bank account has been completely drained.

I see that I just picked a fight with a former girlfriend over on Classmates.com. Fan-friggin’-tastic. I see that I’ve posted naked pictures of Charlie Sheen over on my favorite sports team’s message boards. Wonderful. Apparently I’ve also entered into a financial arrangement with a Nigerian barrister and owe him $13,000. Terrific.

As for you? I just hope you’re enjoying the internet, what with your different-damn-password-for-every-page-you’ve-ever-visited. I hope to whatever god you worship that your Rolodex falls out of your briefcase and into the hands of the slickest con artist who can take all of your passwords and turn your life into the living hell that mine has turned into.

What’s that? You’re not supposed to keep your passwords in your Rolodex either?

Ah, crap….

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(This post brought to you by CrummyJoel and humor-blogs.com. If you’re the random dude whose picture we stole from a Google search, please post a comment and we’ll change the picture to some other random dude whose picture we’ll steal from Google.)



Dear Crummy Drug Commercials,
Tuesday, 8 January 2008, 9:28am
Filed under: crummy letters

I just saw a commercial for a prescription medicine to treat constipation. This commercial made me want this medicine more than anything I have ever wanted in my entire life. What a great life the people who take this medicine lead! Successful in business and commerce, a loving and beautiful family, sparkling white teeth and perfectly pressed clothing, a great set of wheels, living in a perfectly moderate and sunny climate zone…and all this from a constipation medicine??

So, what were the side effects they so very casually mentioned at the end of the commercial? Hmm…. nausea and diarrhea? So my choices are between:

1) Not being able to go at all (painful and sucks, sure).

2) Diarrhea and nausea (still painful and sucks, but now I have to spend the entire day in the can perfecting my Buick Maneuver, not to mention the added benefit of being required to furnish a co-pay for the privelege).

So which is worse? My illness or the side effects of your crummy medicine?

I don’t suffer from constipation, and I am very thankful. However, I’m pretty sure that if I did suffer from it I wouldn’t rely on a television commercial to choose my treatment for me. That’s what doctors are for.

Many of these commercials tell you to “Ask your doctor if (insert ridiculously fake but vaguely Latin-sounding feel-good name of medicine here) is right for you.” I can only imagine that doctors must want to punch people in the face when they come into their office and do this. People watch a 30-second TV clip, spend 26 more seconds on WebMD, and suddenly they think they’re Dr. Gregory House without the limp. Never mind all the years of school plus the internships and clinicals and everything else that doctors have to go through: the celebrity spokesperson made the pretty purple pill appealing, so I want it!

Of course, this is the drug companies’ fault. I’m all for large multi-national corporations making unholy amounts of money, but should companies really be allowed to advertise people into believing they have a need for a narcotic or some other form of prescription medicine with potentially harmful (or really, really gross) side effects? They should make some sort of pill for stupidity, and make everyone who’s ever been talked into a drug by the television take it*.

*Side effects may include smartness, the ability to think for oneself, and/or bleeding from the ears.

CrummyJoel

PS: Humor-blogs.com once experienced an erection lasting longer than four hours, and did not even seek out a doctor. I’ll let someone else (or maybe everyone else) finish this joke in the comments section.



Christ Demands Out of X-Mas
Tuesday, 25 December 2007, 9:32am
Filed under: crummy letters, holidays, the best in fake news reports

(This article compiled from various wire reports)

HEAVEN (AP): Jesus Christ, longtime namesake of the holiday “Christmas”, has issued a statement through heaven’s lone lawyer, asking that His Name be completely removed from the aforementioned holiday.

Said Christ, “Many of My followers get uptight when people use X-mas to remove my name from the holiday. But quite frankly, I prefer it that way. Seriously…have you even seen what happens leading up to this day?!?”

Christ, known during his time on earth as an advocate for the poor and downtrodden, continued: “Riots in shopping malls? Fistfights over video game systems? Spending exorbitant amounts of money on people who already have everything they could possibly ask for? Does that sound like something I’d like to be involved in? Pick one of those other pretend deities and name this holiday after them. I’m through with it. Besides, I was very likely born in the springtime.”

In His statement, Christ produced graphs and documentation that the Christmas holiday has suffered a sharp downward moral spiral over the past few decades. While gifts to the poor have increased over this time, they have not increased at the same rate as greed, gluttony, self-centeredness, and violent temper tantrums as a result of not getting a Wii that I asked for TWO WHOLE YEARS IN A ROW.

“Look, I’m all for the large amounts of time spent with the family during the holidays,” Christ continued. “That part I can get behind. However, I already created a time when families are supposed to get together and think about Me. It’s called ‘Sunday‘. Perhaps this X-mas time would be less stressful for everyone if you took advantage of the 52 other times during the year when you’re supposed to be together.”

Christ refused to lay all of the blame at the feet of secular commercialism: “My children are the cause of a lot of My consternation…as usual. I mean, have you seen how eager they are to nail me to a cross? These days, you can’t get through an X-mas message without hanging Me out to dry by the end of it. They’re trying to kill me quicker than Herod did when I was born for real the first time! For My sakes, can you not let the Son of Man live His 33 years before killing Him?!? Do they not realize that without those 33 perfect years, that cross didn’t mean diddly-squat?” Such strong language only emphasizes Christ’s seriousness regarding this issue.

When asked for a reaction to Christ’s statement, most of the world’s Christians had their mouths too full of mashed potatoes and/or stuffing to understand what they were saying. At the time of this printing, no other deities had offered to attach their name to the holiday in Christ’s stead.

Christ completed his statement by admitting that the entire idea of Christmas was not entirely unsalvageable. “Look, I’m a forgiving guy. It’s kinda my shtick. Can we just get back to the basics of this holiday? Let’s focus on giving, let’s focus on the most downtrodden, let’s focus on children and widows and the needy. Even crazier, let’s focus on the sinful. In short, let’s focus on the people whom I focused on while I was here on earth. Please?!?”

For the Associated Press, I’m CrummyJoel. Further information on this story can be found at humor-blogs.com



Dear Crummy Coupons:
Tuesday, 18 December 2007, 9:11am
Filed under: crummy letters

So, exactly what the hell can I use you for, anyhow?!? I double-freaking-dare you to put more fine print and exceptions on your coupon. It can’t be done, can it?!?

As if my holiday time isn’t stressful enough right now! On top of attending 15 different Christmas parties, bringing snacks to all manner of school and work functions, finding white elephant gifts, seeing strange people that are related to me for the first time in a year, finding grey elephant gifts (don’t ask…), holiday shopping for every living soul that I know: On top of all that, I have to spend 37 minutes figuring out if what I am wanting to purchase qualifies me for your measly discount.

(There was one other thing I had to do this season as well…what was that….Oh yes! Celebrate the birth of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I knew it’d come to me! Some things just get lost in the busy-ness of it all!)

I mean, sure, I’m wanted in 27 states for coupon fraud, so I see why you’re taking such precautions against me. In Nevada alone, I bilked a JC Penney out of 10% off of an “Earlybird item“…twice!! Can you even believe they allowed it to happen a second time?!? And I once spent 18 hours in a county jail in Minnesota for getting an additional 15% off of fragrances. (Note to self: Never again get locked up in prison after having spent time in the fragrances section of a major department store. Some memories can never be erased.)

I digress…my point is: Are all of these precautions and exclusions really necessary for the general public? A hardened coupon criminal like me, sure, but I seriously doubt that Granny Wilson in Des Moines is going to put the entire KMart corporation out of business because, gosh Granny, I hate to break this to you, but your $3.00 off coupon just doesn’t apply to Blue Light Special items! Sorry ’bout that!

I half expect the next coupon I get to say something like this instead:

And a coupon like this would actually be a relief. I mean, isn’t there some law about “truth in advertising” somewhere? I’m fairly sure the intent of such a law isn’t to allow companies to cancel every promise made with more fine print than ten typical real estate contracts. Here’s a novel idea: If the reason there’s a ton of fine print is that your company really can’t afford to give out coupons, then don’t give out any freakin’ coupons! Maybe, just maybe, things like “customer service”, “courtesy” and “$#!t that doesn’t break as soon as it leaves the store” are enough to lure customers to your store.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go fill out all of my mail-in rebate forms. I just can’t wait to get all that money back!!

CrummyJoel

PS: All Humor-blogs.com books are half off right now!**

**(NOT INCLUDING Antisocial Commentary by Diesel and Crummy Church Signs Volume 1 by Joel Bezaire)

PPS: Thanks to my non-crummy wife Jennifer for the Crummy Letter idea.



Dear Crummy Television People
Tuesday, 11 December 2007, 8:55am
Filed under: crummy letters

Oops.

No, not me. You. You should be saying “Oops”. “Oops” about the fact that there are no new episodes of TV shows coming out right now. “Oops” about the fact that people like me have realized that I can spend an autumn doing something besides watching new episodes of old sitcoms (or old episodes of new sitcoms, I can never really tell the difference). I don’t really miss your product. I will survive. I spent so many nights thinking how you did me wrong, that I grew strong. And I learned to carry on….

Anyhow, I digress. On with the letter.

First of all, this whole idea of a “writer’s strike” is a little mystifying to me. Who are these “writers” of whom you speak? When I watch shows like The Hills or Survivor or Kid Nation, I am so drawn in by their vivid realism and natural dialog that I can’t possibly imagine that these so-called “writers” would be necessary at all. These real people put in real situations dealing with real issues in The Real World (©) can’t possibly have writers providing them their lines…can they?!?

Then I remember that all television isn’t reality television (only a mere 96% of it). So I suppose it must be the writers from those other few shows that are doing the striking. Imagine the balls that must take. Are you telling me that the people out there writing for “Til Death” or “Rules of Engagement” are confident enough in their own material that they know people will come crawling back to them once the new shows start? Really?!? Have they ever even seen the shows they’re writing for? Hell, the only sitcom I can even name right now is The Office (30Rock doesn’t count since they haven’t stopped showing new ones yet)*. Every other current sitcom has been completely erased from my memory within the last 3 weeks. I know I can’t be the only one.

To me, it would be like if I decided to strike from the internet: OK, CrummyJoel. Don’t let the firewall hit you on the way out! You’ve gotta know that there’s a demand for your product before you go striking from it…or else people just move on.

The studios and executives are not blame-free in this matter. The writer’s are simply seeking compensation for DVD releases (and other such secondary income) of their shows. The studio’s response (essentially): We don’t make any money on DVD releases. No, really. That’s what they’re telling the writers.

Check this out. That was LAST SEASON’S episodes of a crappy sitcom. As in, the one that stopped showing up on televisions sometime in May. Available NOW on DVD. I remember you used to have to wait months upon months (even years) for a movie to become available to rent or buy. Now you can purchase television episodes online immediately and full season DVDs before the next season even starts. But not because the studios make any money that way. No! They do it for us, the fans, out of the generosity and goodwill so typically shown by rich, corporate…

Naw, even I can’t make that sentence funny.

Anyhow, a big “thanks” to all the television folks who have given me this opportunity to discover things like “reading”, “the outdoors”, “social events”, and “exercise”. Who knew that The Real World could be so much fun?

CrummyJoel

* I was only able to name the two sitcoms mentioned previously in this paragraph by doing something called a “Google Search”. Apparently, Google’s writers are not on strike. Nor are the writers at humor-blogs.com