Lady Tells Me to Go %[email protected]^% Myself

The lady’s kids appeared out of the mist, bearing armfuls of products gathered from the far reaches of the vast big box store. They threw their bounty into her shopping cart sitting in front of me in the checkout lane, the pile growing ever larger, before venturing off for another load.

“Excuse me!” I said brightly. She looked up from the mound of clothing, shampoo and fidget spinners.

“Hi, I picked this line after carefully evaluating the contents of each cart in each line, estimating this line to have the shortest wait between me and my car. Your kids are throwing off my calculations.”

“Really?” she smiled. “Well, gee, why don’t you go $%^&$#$*% yourself? How do you calculate that?”

3 Amazing Things You Can Buy At Costco

Costco seems to have everything, or at least everything you need that comes in a box the size of your car. But you may not know about these 3 items you can buy at Costco today.

Bacon Laundry Detergent

Why go the whole day withouth the sweet, tasty smell of bacon? With Bacon Laundry Detergent, your cravings are satisfied all day.

Jukebox Coffins

Did you know Costco sells coffins. True dat. And now you can get a coffin with a built-in jukebox so your you can listen to your favorite tunes in the afterlife.

Theme Park Vacations

Yes, you can book a theme park vacation at Costco. Not just Disneyland or Universal Orlando. Try out the Flashlight Battery Museum, The Morrissey Wailing Music Festival or the Office Supplies Parade which takes place every April 15 in Stuck Staple, RI.

Shop Owner Forgets To Tell Town His New Store Is Open For Business, Closes

Nantucket Historical Society
Nantucket Historical Society


Mr. Derrin cleaned the glasses one more time. The store was new, shiny and smelled of linseed oil. For two days they wiped down the bar, counters and stools with that linseed oil. They also rubbed the brass fixtures until they shined.

Now it was opening day. People walked by outside but the didn’t come in.

“Why aren’t they walking in,” Mr. Derrin said.

“We need to advertise,” said his son, Alex. “We need a big sign out front. Tell the people what we got for ’em.”

“I don’t have any money for no sign,” Mr. Derrin snorted.

“Well, then,” said Alex. “I spose we can wait on each other, cause no one is coming here.”


Crazy People at the Store: Taking-Thirty-Minutes-To-Pay-With-My-Fifteen-Kids Lady


You decide to pay cash for your gas. Noting the pump number, you stroll to the cash register. A lady is paying for her gas while her fifteen kids add more and more products to the total.

“Johnny, you don’t need chips. We have pretzels in the car.”

“But I waaaaaaaaaaaaaaannnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnntt them.”

“Mom, can I get this pop?”

Kids are throwing bags of chips on the counter like T-Shirts shot out a cannon at a Lakers game. Mom tries to corral the outlaws while Dad does nothing to help. You wonder why you gave up the internet on your smartphone because it looks like it will be a while.

Do You Work Here?

Everywhere I go people ask me one thing: “Excuse me, do you work here?” It used to bug me until I decided to have fun with it.

Last year an old lady stopped me in the aisle of a home entertainment store. She said, “Excuse me, do you work here?”

I walked her over to a nearby TV and said, “As a matter of fact, ma’am, yes I do. Let me show you this Sony Trinitron right here. It’s regularly $3500. Today we are letting it go for 100 bucks.”

“And if you give me 5 twenties right now, I’ll help you carry it to the car.”

Since them I have created many answers to the question, “Excuse me, do you work here?”

At the appliance store: “Yes, I do. Let me show you this new refrigerator. The crisper doubles as a garbage disposal. This is for those times you are kidding yourself and decide to eat healthy and buy 3 heads of lettuce and a bunch of vegetables and then two weeks later you haven’t touched a single carrot. The crisper/garbage disposal eliminates the need to remove the vegetables to throw them out.”

At the Sears tire store: “Yes, I do. Ma’am, your car is ready. I outfitted your Honda Accord with 5 feet high truck tires. You need a ladder to get in but now you can roll over the kid’s bikes laying in the driveway.”

At the DMV: “Yes, I do. Let me tell you about our new system here at the DMV. Instead of you waiting in line here, from now we’re going to come to your house. Once there, we will wait one hour and you come out and tell us we’re in the wrong line.”

At the computer store: “Yes, I do. We’ve started a new system in the computer industry. We will give you the computer for free. Then, you send us a check for $5 for any day you don’t have a problem with it.”

At an auto parts store: “Yes, I do, Let me show you this special exhaust system. It plays musical tunes to match your car. The pickup truck model plays Willie and Waylon’s ‘Mamas Don’t Let your Babies Grow up to be Republicans’.”

At the sporting goods store: “Yes, I do. Are you a multiple-sport athlete? As you know, baseball is getting as violent as hockey. Let me show you this combination baseball bat and hockey stick. With this you’ll be able to hit home runs AND have fun dropping it to get in fights with the other team.”

At the restaurant: “Yes, I do. You are lucky because it is ladies day. On ladies day we feature lunch specials for women. We take any meal that you order and smother it with chocolate.”

At a furniture store on trendy Melrose Avenue: “Yes, I do. Let me show you this piece right here. It is designed by famous Italian modernist Enrico Lotsapasta. What is it? Well, I’m not exactly sure. But, we think it is either a loveseat, an end table, or a futon.”

At the ball park: “Yes, I do. Let me tell you about our stadium dogs. Only the best beef lips and hearts go in our dogs. Today we are selling our ‘beer and stadium dog combo’ for half price, only $65.”

Sometimes I just can’t fake it. I was in Starbucks on Sunset Boulevard. A lady asked me, “Excuse me, do you work here?”

“No, ma’am,” I said. “To work here you have to have either an ear ring, a nose ring, or a belly ring so big you can hang dish towels from it.”


That’s A Good Flick

Movie Theater - 1926
Courtesy US National Archives via Flickr Commons

I rent a lot of movies. Some are movies I didn’t want to pay $8 to see in a theater. Some I just didn’t have time to see. Some I wish they would have paid ME to sit through.

There are lots of clerks at my video store but invariably I always get the same guy. He has an opinion on every movie I bring to the counter. And he voices that opinion. LOUDLY.

“Let’s see- ‘Friday’. That’s a good flick. Ice Cube plays against type in this one. I thought he would be all gangsta and everything but he plays a regular dude in it with a whole family with a Mom and a Dad and all. Now, Chris Tucker, he’s just his crazy regular self. I think he steals it. I’ll bet they saw him in this movie and said that dude is funny. Let’s put him with Jackie Chan and make a hundred million dollars.”

“Oh, yeah. ‘187’. That’s a good flick. Samuel L. Jackson. That guy is an actor. If you like that guy you should also check out The Negotiator. He’s this cop who is framed, right, and then he and Kevin Spacey have a duel of wits. Crazy. Did you know in ‘Do the Right Thing’ his screen credit name was Sam Jackson. Whatsupwiththat? SAM! Like, hey Sam. How ya doin’, Sam? What’s up, Sam? Good to see you, Sam. It just doesn’t sound the same as SAMUEL L. JACKSON.

“I mean, what if Robert DeNiro was ‘Bobby DeNiro’. It’s not the same, is it? I mean, Bobby was the kid on the Brady Bunch movies, right? You couldn’t have Robert DeNiro in a Brady Bunch movie, could you? I mean, Alice would yell at him for not putting the basketball back in the garage and leaving it laying in the driveway and then he’d say to Alice, are you talking to me, are you talking to me, are YOU talking to ME, and then he’d whack her with her own kitchen knife, am I right?”

He seems disappointed if I bring up a movie that was popular at the box office. “Armageddon? Oh, yeah, sure. Well, it had some good stuff. Great soundtrack.”

I’m just glad they don’t have adult videos. “Oh, Debby Meets the Copier Repair Man. That’s a good flick. We don’t have them all but there is a whole series. Debby Meets the Pizza Man. Debby Meets the Pool Guy. Probably the biggest seller was Debby meets her Evil Twin. Great stuff. You know what they should do.

“They should put Robert DeNiro in an adult video. He could play the Pizza Man. And then he goes over to this house and there’s a girl there who REALLY NEEDS A PIZZA if you know what I mean but then the Pool Guy is there and he really wants to CLEAN HER POOL instead of Robert DeNiro so the Pool Guy says get out of here Pizza Man, right, and DeNiro says are you talking to me, you know, and then he whacks the pool guy and throws him in the pool and then proceeds to deliver the pizzas, what do you think?”

Like everyone in LA he has written a screenplay: “I’ve got my own ideas, right? Like, I wrote a movie about LA called Final Days. What happens is that all the natural disasters that we have in Southern California happen all at once, right? First it starts to rain, then hail, then mudslides, then the Santa Ana winds come in which start big fires.

“Then a typhoon hits which creates a big tidal wave that crashes over Venice Beach and fills the LA basin with 65 feet of water. People are swimming for their lives. Angelyne is floating around on her breasts. Dennis Woodruff is floating down Pico with oars sticking out of his car. Then after 4 or 5 days of chaos Charlton Heston climbs on top of the Hollywood sign and he spreads his arms wide and he says, ‘Do not be afraid, my people, for I will lead you out of Los Angeles and down the 405 into Orange County where you will be free to vote Republican and own assault weapons’. What do you think?”

Finals Days? Yeah, right. Are you crazy, you video-store-clerk-half-baked- film-critic?

It’s going to be a hit.

Planet Guilt

Planet Hollywood is having some financial problems lately. Despite these setbacks, there is news of more theme restaurants. Here are some of the new exciting restaurants soon to be built near you:

PLANET GUILT- this chain is being put together by the Catholic Church. The first one will be attached to St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York. Exhibits include glass cases full of pope hats, the little one that looks like it goes on a bowling ball and the tall one that needs warning lights on it for low flying aircraft. Special attractions are the pay phone booth made from the original papal bullet proof booth.

IRS CAFE- the new IRS cafe in Washington has proven to be a popular tourist destination this summer. The IRS cafe is popular with the meeting and convention industry because of the multi purpose Willie Nelson banquet room. The IRS Cafe loses points on originality however. At Arnold Schwarznegger’s own restaurant in Santa Monica, he plays "Learning Australian" tapes in the bathrooms. The IRS Cafe has a continuos loop of recent tax law changes. Especially popular in the men’s room are the urinal mints that are created with pictures of IRS executives on them.

REPUBLICAN RESTAURANT- also in Washington, the Republican diner on a block of one way streets that only allows right hand turns. The walls are covered with popular Republican items of historical interest including the Pete Wilson weathervane- it changed direction wherever the wind blew. Popular menu items include Dan Quail potato skins.

DEMOCRAT DINER- designed by Teddy Kennedy, the special feature is that it is not located next to any bridges. A special meter on the wall keeps track of Bill Clinton’s approval rating. If it goes up more than five per cent during dinner, the whole restaurant gets free six packs of Billy beer left over from the Carter Administration.

INTERNET CAFE- there are no waitresses at the Internet cafe. You order from your table by logging on to the internet and the food is delivered by robots. When I was there I tried to get the phone number of an attractive blonde sitting at the bar. All she gave me was her e-mail address.

BASEBALL BISTRO- the unique feature of the Baseball Bistro is that the casual fare menu items are way overpriced. The zucchini sticks, for example, are $2,000,000. The Daryl Strawberry appetizer doesn’t even stay at your table. It gets passed around to your neighbors tables until it doesn’t work out and gets passed again.

HOCKEY HUT- this northern chain is opening several restaurants in the south, proving their is an appetite for hockey in southern states. More likely, this chain proves their is a market for violence. Every hour, two waiters drop their gloves and fight. The action includes fake blood flying through the air. In the gift shop you can buy teeth molds shaped like actual fake teeth of your favorite NHL stars. Just pray we don’t get a Monica Lewinsky Cigar Bar.

Mr. Ditzel, Brianna Will See You Now

I walked into Discount Hair for my haircut. After they called my name, I plopped into a chair. Carla sat in the next chair, taking the last drags off her Marlboro Red, the final pull burning into the filter. Her slightly graying brown hair framed her tired face. Smoke rings filled the stagnant air. She studied me through the haze.

“How would you like your hair cut today?” she asked, stubbing the cigarette in a Hard Rock Las Vegas ashtray she apparently borrowed on her last gambling junket.

“Oh, this time I would like you to cut it in a sort of upsweeping swirl that makes my head look like an ice cream cone,” I said.

No response. She didn’t care what I said. She cut it the same way every time.

I had only two choices for a haircut in LA. Discount Hair, or the high-end Beverly Hills salon Hair International. Nothing in between. For some reason, LA has no middle class in hair salons.

She took a comb out of a clear plastic canister of what looked like blue formaldehyde. Her other hand held a water bottle. She wetted down my hair- my face and shoulders getting doused in the process. Putting down the water bottle, she grabbed a pair of scissors.

They looked like scissors you see in an office. She combed some hair down in front of my face. Without looking, she made a big swiping cut, the hair falling away en masse. Was it straight? I couldn’t tell from all the spray mist in my eyes.

In a few more whacks with the office scissors, she was done. Carla cuts hair faster than people leaving Sunday Mass at my church. She handed me a purple plastic mirror shaped like a TV screen. I held it up as she spun me around in the chair.

“I’m a new man!” I said.

She said nothing. I hoped a good wash would help straighten out the hair in back which sloped downhill from left to right about half an inch.

A few weeks later it was time for a Hair International visit. When a “Carla Cut” is brand new and short, it looks halfway OK. After it grows out, it looks like it was cut with a weed-whacker. To re-establish a decent haircut, every so often I make a trip to Hair International. I’d go there all the time if I could afford it.

Their name sounds important: Hair INTERNATIONAL. It’s better than “Hair Near West Side” or “Hair Next To Denny’s.” The word “international” lends an air of class. The Columbus, Ohio airport is called Port Columbus International Airport. Not only is it international, it is a port! The only port in America surrounded on all sides by pre-fab condos and a golf course.

The receptionist checked me in and asked me if I wanted a latte or cappuccino. I declined and sat on the leather couch in the foyer, taking in the art on the walls- a catalog of the hottest young artists in town- Huertas, Meadows, Owens. I was glad none of it was covered in cow dung.

“Mr. Ditzel, Brianna will see you now,” the receptionist said into a microphone on her desk, the announcement booming over the techno music filling the room. I looked up from my perch four feet away and nodded my head.

She handed me a nylon robe and gestured toward a dressing room, which was actually a closet with some cleaning supplies on the upper shelf. I doffed my blue button-down shirt and put on the robe. There is no fabric more uncomfortable against your skin than nylon.

As I opened the door, I looked for Brianna. Standing there instead was a tall, goth-looking woman wearing nothing but black. Everyone in the place was wearing black. Her face was pale with Alice Cooper eye make-up. She gestured to a line of sinks. Speaking slowly in a haunting tone she said, “Hello, I’m Karma. I’ll be your hair-washer today. Please sit.”

Her hair cascaded over my head as she worked. It smelled like clove cigarettes. Her beaded necklace bumped against my chin as she lathered me up. After a thorough sudsing, she began to rinse. Suddenly she decided to add more hot water to the mix.

“Yeeeoowwww,” I yelled.

“Too hot?” she asked.

No, I boil my hair every day. I prefer it al dente.

She toweled off my head as I sat up. As the searing pain left my scalp, I focused my eyes. There stood Brianna. Shimmering shoulder length blonde hair, black shoes, black capri pants, a white top with black tiger stripes.

Native Southern Californian. Natural blonde. No elective surgery. Rare.

After graduating from UCLA with an accounting degree, she decided she was more of a “people person”, and began her career in the hair styling industry. Ernst and Young’s loss is our gain.

“Where the hell have you been?” she demanded loudly, trying to be heard over Nine Inch Nails.

I couldn’t admit I was seeing Carla at Discount Hair.

“Gosh, I’m on the road so much, I’ve been getting my hair cut in airports. Terrible. I need you to bring it back to life,” I lied, sliding into the chair. I detected the slight scent of her Dolce and Gabbana perfume, masked by the room’s dominant smell of Paul Mitchell Awapuhi shampoo.

She took my hair between two fingers of one hand, cutting the excess with razor sharp scissors. She worked intently, with little small talk. I relaxed and started to drift off.

“There you go,” she said sweetly, snapping me back to reality. How long have I been sitting here? I looked in the mirror. She had shaped it perfectly, parting it at the exact spot that minimized my male pattern baldness.

“Perfect,” I said.

$100 plus a $30 tip. $130 for a decent haircut?