2006: The Year in Angry

Behold: my first 2007 overheard conversation between total strangers that I am very glad not to have been subjected to more of:

Female passerby: “So, what happened to him?”
Male passerby: “Well, he moved to L.A., and then he ended up on a cruise ship.”

It is so curtains for 2006. Which means, like everyone else, I will now trot out a couple of lists to waste your precious time. FIRST: the top twelve things that made me angry in the year gone by, ranked by the overall time I spent bitching about each item either to someone else or to myself (and mostly the latter):

1. Significant others who sit on the same side of a booth when dining out by themselves. Fuck all y’all.

2. The unsightly demise of Arrested Development. And According to Jim survives and even thrives. Lame, Americans, very lame!

3. People who take seats right behind you at the movie theater (or in a restaurant, bar, or coffee house) when there are plenty of other options that would allow them to sit next to zero strangers. My anger about this came to a head in November when I went to a movie out in Valley Stream, Long Island (the birthplace of SNL‘s Fred Armisen, f.y.i.). There were hundreds of empty seats in my particular theater, possibly a side effect from the metal detector you’re required to go through to gain entry (Valley Stream has seen better days, Fred). Despite the oodles of extra space, a huge family (in both senses of the word “huge,” as this was a perfect storm of five fat, grabby children and their squat parental units) came in just after the start of the movie, and they plopped down two rows behind mine, with one beefy adult taking up residence immediately behind my seat. I moved, but the film had been irretreviably ruined — although the artsier term “film” can’t apply to something as hideous as Saw 3 (long story) eventually turned out to be. All I want to know now, though, is, what brand of douchebags would take their very small children to something like Saw 3? The shit-for-brains brand, that’s what.

4. Joanna Newsom’s voice. It makes the baby Jesus cry.

5. Guys who like Joanna Newsom’s fey, wussy music. It’s called testosterone. Look into it.

6. Music magazines that insist on heaping praise and editorial pages on nothing bands like My Chemical Romance just because those bands are currently popular and the editors know copies of their rag will sell if worthless emo pretty-boys are put on the cover. Same goes for the aforementioned wussy harpist, whose music will launch a thousand Renaissance Faires. Just because something sounds different doesn’t mean it’s good. This has been an unfocused public-service announcement/rant.

7. Panic! at the Disco. I mean, just look at these guys!

8. Grown-ups who play the Nintendo Wii. Obviously I’m not above playing video games, but if I wanted to sweat, I’d actually play a real sport.

9. Washing dishes. Kill me. Kill me now.

10. The Tenacious D movie. This rabbit turd was a bigger let-down than that Star Wars with too much Jar Jar. Memo to Jack Black: Ditch Liam Lynch. Get back in with the Mr. Show people. Create your masterpiece. It’s that simple.

11. Fuckers on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire who don’t know how to use their lifelines. Why even bother to go on the show? Once and for all: Polling the audience doesn’t help after the seventh or eighth question. Jesus!

12. Pitchers on the Detroit Tigers who throw 98 mph and up, rarely walk anyone, and dominate hitters, and yet can’t make a simple throw to first, second, or third base when it counts. No errors: you win. Eight errors: you lose. There’s always this year…

AND NOW: six things that pleased me in 2006:

1. The Detroit Tigers.
2. The long-overdue return of a Democratic Congress.
3. Gorilla Coffee.
4. The bland reliability of my Chevy Corsica.
5. The Sword.
6. The Black Sheep Pub.

AND FINALLY: an announcement:

There will be a new website up and running next week or so. I shall make my so-not-triumphant return then. Happy 2007!