I'm an avid David Sedaris fan. Ever since my friend turned me onto his humorous slice-of-life essays with Me Talk Pretty One Day, I've been hooked.

He just released his newest book, entitled Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, and it's both similar to and unlike most of his other stuff.

Don't get me wrong, the stories are still melancholy and satirical in nature, but the delivery is a bit different this time around. When I first saw the book, I assumed this was a Sedarisian take on children's stories, what with the smaller book size and the animal themes.

After reading most of the book, it's safe to say that impressionable young kids should come NOWHERE near this book. The stories, mostly allegorical tales, don't really have an uplifting tone; more often than not, they're tales of a dark, satirical nature. There's also a lot of colorful language and adult themes, which only made me like it more.

Stories such as The Toad, the Turtle, and the Duck, in which the three disgruntled critters bitch and moan about having to wait in a long line at a service desk of some sort (much like the experience we all have at the DMV), takes on an edgy, twisted tone toward the end, and is effective in its portrayal of the same frustrations we experience on a regular basis.

The Faithful Setter explores the dynamic of a dysfunctional marriage between two Irish setters brought about by infidelity. It's a common suburban story, but spun into the realm of domesticated dogs, which is different.

I don't want to ruin the impact of many of these stories, as part of the book's appeal lies in its surprises. You don't really know if the stories are going to have dark, depressing endings or melancholy endings. Part of the impact of stories such as The Motherless Bear and The Cow and the Turkey are best felt after just reading them for yourself.

If you've ever enjoyed a David Sedaris book, then check this out. If you haven't yet indulged in his witty, cleverly-composed writing, check out Me Talk Pretty One Day or Naked, and move on from there. This one will make more sense if you're familiar with his storytelling style.

Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk isn't for everyone, but if you can appreciate slightly twisted stories about animals that are also about humans, then this book's for you.

Posted
AuthorCheese Sandwich
CategoriesRandom Thought

When the Founding Fathers designed the Constitution, they explicitly made it so women couldn’t vote. Later, we decided that was simply a sign of the times, and everyone should have the right to vote. We like to right wrongs, and so we reversed this trend and gave women equal rights. What we failed to realize was that the Founding Fathers were geniuses and never intended for women to have the right to vote. "She said I couldn't touch these again, if she couldn't vote!"

I’m not a misogynist. I don’t believe that a woman’s role is in the kitchen or the bedroom. I don’t even believe that they shouldn’t be politicians. I believe women are capable of doing pretty much everything a man can do, except use logic. Women are illogical creatures, overrun by emotion, that believe the world should be remade in their image. Men tolerate and accept this behavior because breasts are delightful.

But, Ben Franklin was a stronger man than we are today.  Along with his posse, they developed a system that was woman immune. A system that would last through the centuries, even after the time they died. And they would’ve gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for…er…Sorry. I woke up to Scooby Doo. The point here is, they didn’t deny women the right to vote as a side note. They denied women the right to vote because they knew what we all know. Women are fucking crazy.

A face you can trust...

It is true what they say, behind every good man is a good woman. But, we need to remember that behind a good man is the place for a good woman. They think in ways that men cannot fathom, and come up with some of the best ideas around. But, for them, picking a politician is like picking a pair of shoes: chosen for looks, often times uncomfortable, and definitely not something to be worn more than once.

Now, I’ll admit that not all men should be allowed to vote either, but we already have laws that prevent convicted felons from voting…

Posted
AuthorPsych
CategoriesRandom Thought
5 CommentsPost a comment

Let’s talk about marriage. Marriage is an idea that people are quickly becoming disenchanted with. As more and more people believe that it is okay to get divorced, they stop wanting to be married. It loses meaning if you can get out of it. But people still want sex, and so not only do they not get married, but they become increasingly promiscuous. Or worse, they develop ideas like polyamory, so that they can share their love (sex organs) with others and still be married. Within 100 years, we will be a nation of sluts. I am not pleased with this idea.  As always, I have the solution. New Marriage Divorce Form

In order to stop the world from descending into the Second Circle of Hell, we need a response. That response is New Marriage. New Marriage is kind of like old marriage, and by old marriage I mean Biblical marriage. And by that I mean if you commit adultery or divorce, you get shot. In the head. With bullets. And not love bullets. Bullets that cause death. Or set on fire. Or electrocuted. Or ya know. Something to that effect.

By invoking New Marriage, we can restore the sanctity of marriage. People will once again have to think about what they are doing before they make a lifelong commitment, and with technology (camera phones, video tape, etc) it will be very easy to prove when someone is cheating on someone else. And no, polyamory is not okay in New Marriage. It’s a one to one relationship. If you don’t like that, don’t get New Married.

Ceremonies aren't necessary, but I like rings.

New Marriage will solve many problems. For one, girls (or guys) who marry for money will have to be committed to that relationship for the rest of their lives. There is no remarrying after death in New Marriage. There is no having sex with other people after your partner dies in New Marriage. You are committed for your life time. Secondly, we’re going to open New Marriage up to all people. That includes same-sex New Marriage. There’s no reason anyone shouldn’t be able to put their life on the line to show that they care about someone, regardless of sexual orientation. Finally, New Marriage will restore meaning to an dying institution. We very much need marriage to be sacred. It’s the culmination of the highest of our emotions.  It is the most of ourselves that we can share with another, and in its current state you may as well just give someone a rose. It’ll wither almost as quickly.

And for old marriage? It hardly matters what you do with it. Keep for people who are borderline committed, but think they might divorce someday. New Marriage will be for those who are willing to risk everything to show their love. I think that’s how it should be.

Posted
AuthorPsych
CategoriesRandom Thought
3 CommentsPost a comment

You might be American if... 10.  When visiting a foreign household without a television, you can't help but ask "Where is your reality box?"

9. You don't think eating lunch after brunch is weird.

8. You start panicking when you see a roundabout.

334_roundabout1

7. You need to make a call to your therapist when you actually have to get out of your car to eat.

6. Your oven broke and you replaced it with a second microwave.

5. The last piece of fruit you touched was a month ago. And it was plastic.

4. When visiting an coffee bar in Rome, you're confused when the barista doesn't know how to make a frappucino.

3. You take up All-You-Can-Eat buffets on their word.

2. You talk about Ross and Rachel as if they are real people.

1. You bought a truck to drive up and down mountains like in the commercials...even though you live in the suburbs.

Posted
AuthorAustin Rafter
CategoriesRandom Thought
2 CommentsPost a comment

Burbank Airport.  Excellent for leaving quickly but not the most organized after landing. Maybe 10 terminals, but more likely, 7.  I go to retrieve my luggage post Vegas and encounter more sheep like pleeb morons (yes; this is their specific genus classification).  We are all accustomed to waiting like assholes around the great moving metal beast that spits out our luggage after dropping and chewing it many times (make-up and hair product be damned!)  Now I understand that we all need our luggage and that there aren't enough claims for us to surround them politely and each receive our bag without any fuss but SERIOUSLY FOLKS!  You expect courtesy?

When retrieving one's bags it's one of the last true "every man for himself" moments in contemporary society.  If you stand with your knees firmly locked and pressed against the beast waiting for your own luggage and expect not to receive a bruise here or there...then Darwin should have disposed of you years ago.

Did the Germans apologize on the beaches of Normandy?  No.  Did Ghengis Khan?  Will I?  NEVER!!!  Get out of my way!  If you stand in the line of fire, that's your own fault, but I need my bags and you are blocking them like every great mouth-breather before you.  Move, or feel the wrath of my luggage.  "excuse me?"...who do you think you're kidding?

Excuuuuuse yourself from the Gene-pool please!

Posted
AuthorSpazarella
CategoriesRandom Thought

Well, sometimes you just have to sit back and realize how blessed we are to have this beautiful thing we call the internet. Without it, the following story would probably not be seen or heard by anyone other than the parties involved, and most likely would have never occurred (since it revolves around an email string). As reported by nineMSN, the Australian version of MSN, a resident of Adelaide (capital of the Australian state of South Australia) tried to pay his utility bill with a spider drawing. Before I show you the absolute gems that these emails are, I would like to say that if you ever owe Behind the Hype any kind of payment (kind of difficult since we are a free site, but you are welcome to try), we will gladly accept a spider drawing to settle debts. Cow drawings are also acceptable, but may additionally require going down on Fierce Pussy, but that is something you would have to speak with her about. nineMSN included each email sent between David Thorne (the Adelaide resident), and Jane Gilles (utility company employee). Really, there is nothing I can do to make this funnier, because it is simply pure comic gold. Enjoy!

From: Jane Gilles Date: Wednesday 8 Oct 2008 12.19pm To: David Thorne Subject: Overdue account

Dear David, Our records indicate that your account is overdue by the amount of $233.95. If you have already made this payment please contact us within the next 7 days to confirm payment has been applied to your account and is no longer outstanding.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles

Sounds pretty standard. He owes them money, and they are simply asking for it...pretty basic so far.

From: David Thorne Date: Wednesday 8 Oct 2008 12.37pm To: Jane Gilles Subject: Re: Overdue account

Dear Jane, I do not have any money so am sending you this drawing I did of a spider instead. I value the drawing at $233.95 so trust that this settles the matter.

Regards, David.

Spider with 7 Legs

What? A drawing? A spider drawing? What? It may have taken him about 45 seconds to draw that.

Dear David, Thank you for contacting us. Unfortunately we are unable to accept drawings as payment and your account remains in arrears of $233.95. Please contact us within the next 7 days to confirm payment has been applied to your account and is no longer outstanding.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles

I wonder if she had to speak with a supervisor to verify that they are unable to accept drawings as payments. It is also worthy to note her use of "arrears" after reading such a monumentally ridiculous email.

Maybe we should change our name to "Arrears the Hype" - what do you think?

Dear Jane, Can I have my drawing of a spider back then please.

Regards, David.

What the fuck...unreal.

Dear David, You emailed the drawing to me. Do you want me to email it back to you?

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles

She must have been confused, but how could you be confused at this point? I would just be happy to be along for the ride.

Dear Jane,

Yes please.

Regards, David.

Why though? Why?...Well, just stay tuned. It gets better, believe me.

Attached

Spider with 7 Legs

Dear Jane, Are you sure this drawing of a spider is the one I sent you? This spider only has seven legs and I do not feel I would have made such an elementary mistake when I drew it.

Regards, David.

"Elementary mistake" was just perfect.

Dear David, Yes it is the same drawing. I copied and pasted it from the email you sent me on the 8th. David your account is still overdue by the amount of $233.95. Please make this payment as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles

Having to deal with pretty outlandish requests on a daily basis, I am still extremely impressed with her professionalism at this point. I certainly would have snapped.

Thank you for contacting me. I am currently away on leave, traveling through time and will be returning last week.

Regards, David.

Returning last week, he says. This man is either insane or genius - I am going with genius, just because if he's insane, then I am not too far off myself.

David responds, after he returns last week:

Hello, I am back and have read through your emails and accept that despite missing a leg, that drawing of a spider may indeed be the one I sent you. I realize with hindsight that it is possible you rejected the drawing of a spider due to this obvious limb omission but did not point it out in an effort to avoid hurting my feelings. As such, I am sending you a revised drawing with the correct number of legs as full payment for any amount outstanding. I trust this will bring the matter to a conclusion.

Regards, David.

Spider with 8 Legs

"...in an effort to avoid hurting my feelings.." - right, because a utility company is all about sparing feelings. That is just magical to read. He trusts this will bring the matter to a conclusion. I am just speechless at this point.

Dear David, As I have stated, we do not accept drawings in lei of money for accounts outstanding. We accept cheque, bank cheque, money order or cash. Please make a payment this week to avoid incurring any additional fees.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles

Still professional, Jane? Come on...he sends you another drawing and you think you are going to get payment out of him? My oh my.

I understand and will definitely make a payment this week if I remember. As you have not accepted my second drawing as payment, please return the drawing to me as soon as possible. It was silly of me to assume I could provide you with something of completely no value whatsoever, waste your time and then attach such a large amount to it.

Regards, David.

She actually does "return" the drawing...once again...speechless.

Attached

Spider with 8 Legs

Once again, thank you internet for allowing me such joy. Without you, where would I be? Certainly not reading an email chain about a dude trying to pay for a utility bill with a spider drawing that he free-handed in less time than it took to write the emails themselves. Without the internet, I'd probably naked in a cold ravine, sucking the fungus from between my toes, dreaming of a day where I could be a part of a hilarious series of tubes, that interconnect with gypsy magic. Internet, let's hug.

As for you, Mr. David Thorne of Adelaide - if you are reading this, I ask...nay!...beg that you come write for Behind the Hype. You, my friend, are exactly what this site and my beautiful internet need. I e-bow to you, David.

Note* The original, non-"edited with an axe" version of the email correspondence below can be found at David Thorne's site here.

Some of you may be familiar with the Fat Joe track Make it Rain, off of his album Me, Myself & I and you probably already know how pure genius it is. For those of you unfamiliar with this magical song, you are in for a treat. No matter what your background is, I think you should be able to find the humor in pretending to be so well-off that you can literally throw money into the sky. I might be mistaken, and if I am, feel free to go fuck yourself and read another post or another site.

The Plan

My buddy turned 24 today, and is having a get-together at Springbok to celebrate his most recent trip around the Sun. We have had a running gag of just spouting out "make it rain" regardless of context, so I decided we need to take it to the next level. The idea is that we will make our own rendition of a music video for Make it Rain, will heavily drunk, and using Monopoly money rather than actual duckets. Reason being is that I don't exactly have a spare stack of hundo's to fling around, willy nilly. If you do, please refer to the Send Your Hype page and help a brotha eat!

Presumably, this plan will succeed merely based on the fact that the only elements that matter are alcohol and loud people - both of which will be a commodity tonight. Earlier in the evening I stopped by my local Target to pick up a couple Monopoly board games, which totaled $22, and then I headed over to a record store to grab the Fat Joe CD, which only set me back $4. All in all, less than 30 bones to allow for immense shenanigans to take place - that's my kind of deal.

The Ingredients

Monopoly Board Games
Fat Joe - Me, Myself & I

The Practice Run

Before leaving for near-death, and immense shenanigans, I decided to have a quick run-through of the plan. I show off the Monopoly money, the Fat Joe CD, and my luxurious Sony boombox. Time to get 'er done!

This is probably in the MacGyver league of plans, except I am not making a bomb out of one strand of sheep's wool, and 6 toothpicks, but it's close!

Posted
AuthorRedmanthatcould
CategoriesRandom Thought

My buddy Oliver's birthday is coming up this Friday, and I asked him what he wanted. He did not hesitate with this immediate response:

I want boobs for my birthday. All over my face. But not stripper boobs.

So what I ask you, my reading public, is if you are in the greater Los Angeles area, have boobs, are not against having them in some random man's face, and are not a stripper, then we need to talk. The only alternative is I get him nice and liquored up, and shove my own moobs (i.e.: man boobs) in his face, which would be highly unorthodox for me (read: par for the course).

Notice, if you will, that Oliver did not specify the quality of said boobs, so fear not if you have inadequate, ugly boobs. All boobs are welcome.

P.S. - I love being me.

Posted
AuthorRedmanthatcould
CategoriesRandom Thought

I know it's not really all that newsworthy anymore, but for those of you living under a rock the past three or so weeks...My wonderful, glorious, goddess Scarlett (that's Ms. Johansson to you) has been ruined - by Van Wilder himself - Ryan Reynolds!

Perfection

It's taken this long for my paralyzing shock to subside enough to permit me to venture a rant on this topic.

I hinted at it in my Guilty Pleasure post. But now, well, now Mr. Morissette has gone and done it.

How?! Why?!!
He's somehow conned/scammed/blackmailed/hypnotized my precious into getting hitched.

My Precious

Speaking of which, Scarlett, Six Degrees of Separation here babe, but you've got Dave Coulier's dick in your mouth.

"I oughtta know!"

Let's play the game - Alanis Sucked Dave's cock in a theater (I'm assuming movie, and not live, but who knows with these Canadians).

Not a single spot on this angelic face is untouched by Coulier Cock
Then she shacked up with Two Guys, A Girl, and A Pizza Place, minus One Guy, A Girl, and the Pizza Place.

Hey guys, do you know what I call my house? I call it the tool box! Get it? Cause I'm a gigantic tool!

One can only assume they exchanged fluid in some way, shape, or form, thereby transferring Coulier Cock to Blade's bitch.

And fingers crossed, hoping I'm wrong on this one...but I'm guessing Jailbait Hostess Fucker, Definitely, Maybe licked every square centimetre of your flawless, naked, dripping wet post-aroma bath body with that Dave Coulier Dick Remnant Encrusted mouth of his.

And thus, you've got Dave Coulier's Dick in your mouth, or at least remnant's of it.

I'm holding out hope against hope that this is all just some sort of publicity stunt like with Tom Theta-Clear Cruise, and the not nearly as desirable (as you my delectable Scarlett, or even as herself pre-Cruise) Katie Holmes.

I know you've got Vicki Christina Barcelona out in theater's. I just don't know what Too-Much-Hair-Gel is peddling. He doesn't deserve you.

No mere mortal man is deserving

Ryan Reynolds?! I mean come on!! Are you gonna be Scarlett Reynolds now? That sounds like a fucken venereal disease!

Scarlett, you rock my socks. You are my Queen. I just can't figure out why you married the jester...

The Queen

- Lenny

Posted
AuthorBTH Staff
CategoriesRandom Thought

cool hand luke poster
PAUL NEWMAN HAS PASSED AWAY.

When I first heard the news, I literally gasped.

It wasn't an ironic, forced or facetious gasp.  Nor did I merely utter a disinterested "gasp".

A sincere gasp manifested itself as I stumbled upon the sidebar on IMDB while looking up cast info for Choke.

To say that Paul Newman is a great actor, wow, I guess I mean, to say Paul Newman was a great actor, is to say that Pope Benedict is kinda religious.

I don't believe anyone, short of possibly Robert Redford could do this man any justice in remembrance, so I won't even try.  There are many more experienced and talented writers/reviewers afoot that I'm sure would make these words, I type, seem like an insult to the legend.  Roger Ebert springs to mind.  He has a lengthy and undoubtedly in depth and informative article up on his site.  I didn't dare read it beforehand as I was afraid it would shame me out of writing this piece.  That being said, here's what I wanted to share:

egyptian theater hollywood, ca

I had the great fortune of seeing Cool Hand Luke for the first time the way it was meant to be seen, projected on the big screen.  I'm not old enough to have seen it opening night, but I was lucky enough to catch a revival of it at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, put on by the American Cinematheque.  I was left in awe.  I wanted to be Cool Hand Luke / Paul Newman.  He said he could eat 50 eggs, but I didn't believe him.  He proved me wrong though, and I would never doubt him again.

One of the many reasons I like John Cusack as much as I do is that in Serendipity he, or at least his character, claimed Cool Hand Luke as his favorite movie.  And then he went on to extol it's virtues to an uninitiated Kate Beckinsale.  And while I don't know it for a fact, I feel like this little bit of character exposition was taken directly from Cusack's personal life.

But Cool Hand Luke was only one of a myriad of roles in which Paul Newman shined. He was able to out-grandiose Jackie Gleason in The Hustler. This was no small feat my friends.  Jackie Gleason was larger than life and commanded your attention.  Any single episode of The Honeymooners will attest to that.  And yet there was Paul Newman as Fast Eddie, with that mischievous grin of his, daring you not to be captivated.

The Hustler

Here is where I feel Paul Newman's true appeal lies (for me anyway)...

The way I see it, Paul Newman was, is (it just feels wrong using the past tense) a cross between Jimmy Stewart the Everyman, and Steve McQueen the Badass.

Jimmy Stewart

+

Steve McQueen

=

Paul Newman

He was our very own Jimmy McQueen.  He combined the best of those two paradigm's.  This makes him a paradox.  A paradox because you can't be an everyman badass or a badass everyman.  You just can't.  But he was.  He was the guy you'd want by your side in a fist fight, and he was also the guy you'd first call if your dog had just died.

Newman's Own

But here's the thing...it's not just the myth or legend of Paul Newman that I'm a fanboy of, it's the man himself.  I caught the "Redford on Newman" episode of the befittingly-titled Iconoclasts on the Sundance channel.  The amount of time and effort he put into charity work was humbling.

But why did he put his image on all of his Newman's Own products?  Was it because of an ego the likes of which Oprah has never seen?  Nice try, but sorry, no.  It was because 100% of the profits go to charity.  It's simple math really, the more Newman's Own sells, the more money that goes to charity.  (Paul) Newman's Own image sells ranch dressing and that was all the reason he needed to slap that glorious mug on every bottle/jar/can/jug & canister.

Rest in Peace Paul Newman.  Say "hi" to my Grandparents for me.  I'm sure you can speak Russian, can't you?

Respectfully,

- Lenny

Continuing the theme, I'd like to think that my vagina makes for interesting conversation. And the fact that my little ol' hot pocket always seems to find itself in some amazingly awkward situation or another, well, it kinda makes me believe that I'm sitting on a Super Hero with magestic powers. (Or, if you are one of my exes, a Super Villain.) Behold my most recent vagina adventurequest...

Mike: if i don't make menstruation jokes who will?
Mike: its creepy when women do it
Mike: because then shit gets real
Casey: well i guess i know to keep my mouth shut then
Casey: cause it's my shtick
Mike: it is?
Casey: usually
Casey: anything pertaining to a vulgar vulva story
Mike: well i don't wanna stand in the way of your shtick
Casey: that's what she said OH
Mike: so let's hear one
Casey: well they aren't really jokes
Casey: and then shit gets real
Casey: and then people get quiet
Mike: so make shit real
Casey: don't say you didn't ask for it
Casey: 1/4 of my tampon got stuck yesterday
Casey: and that shit won't come out
Casey: so i was SHAMED at target today searching for douche
Casey: i tried to walk by all swift like and just grab a box
Casey: but it's mixed in with the yeast infection treatment
Casey: so i'm like falling over, trying to pry a douche box out of the bottom shelf
Casey: when worlds hottest target shopper walks by
Casey: he almost asked if i needed help, but he glanced down at what my hands were clinging to
Casey: and then he shot a look at my horrified expression
Casey: so he turned around, his legs all twisted, and walked away as fast as he could
Casey: and i sat shamed in the feminine protection/incontinence aisle
Casey: alone
Mike: ...
Casey: exactly
Casey: crickets
Mike: no i was jerking off
Mike: but really that is pretty funny
Casey: it's pathetic
Mike: it's just one thing after another
Casey: but at least my newly polished nails match my bleeding vagina <333
vagina I love it mmmm baby

What kind of misadventure will my Super Hot Pocket find itself in next? Stay tuned!

My first post. Nice and controversial. Hey, I'm Casey Cupcakes. And if this blog doesn't lay it out plain and simple, well...

I enjoy being a slut

And I also enjoy being a bleeding-heart liberal, 20-something female living in California.

...Which brings me to my next point. Because of the fact that all Planned Parenthood locations are notorious for long waits, I avoided even a mere attempt at making an appointment for my latest, erm, health scare, and jumped right into mass texting every liberal chick in my phonebook, because surely, one of those hookers would have the answer to my prayers. Why? Because Planned Parenthood is so ON THEIR SHIT, they send everyone home with a lifetime supply of condoms and birth control packets after each visit, just to be "sure." To my relief, they also dole out extra servings of the Plan B pill like a side of steaming mashed potatoes, whether you ask for it or not.... which means that shit is available on the slutty black market 24/7.

...Which brings me to my next point. Thank you, state of California, for allowing Planned Parenthood (and local drugstores, if you want to spend $45) to dole out extra boxes of the Plan B pill like a side of steaming mashed potatoes. A glorious, steaming side of potatoes that will magically remove any and all traces of satan spawn clinging for life on the inside of my irresponsible (albeit a smidge tipsy) and wretched uterus. All in a day's work.

And lastly, thank you dear Planned Parenthood, for thanklessly looking out for the futures of hussies everywhere, and for reminding me that even though I spread my legs, I don't have to lift a finger.