Friday, January 30, 2009

I find it humorous that the newspaper placed Snoop Dog so close to the Bud Bowl logo

Yes, this is a picture of me wearing a Super Bowl ring

That's the real Lombardi Trophy, too.

I think this football thing might catch on

There has been conversation in recent days about professional football, especially here in Tampa, where the Pepsi Ford Dell Super Bowl XLIII will be played on Sunday.

While I enjoy watching football games, both at stadiums and on TV, I believe there’s room for improvement. I offer the following suggestions.

  • Eliminate the infield fly rule.

  • At the games, fans rooting for the team I support should be equipped with stun guns. Opposing fans should be handcuffed.

  • The New York Giants, New York Jets, and Washington Redskins should be required to adopt the geographically and culturally more descriptive names suggested several years ago by writer Gregg Easterbrook. The Giants and Jets will become New Jersey/A and New Jersey/B, respectively. The Redskins will be the Potomac River Drainage Basin Indigenous Persons.

  • Players that boastfully ascribe every victory to Jesus must also be required to loudly blame Jesus for their losses. (This rule also goes for musicians at awards shows.)

  • To help the country heal from the ongoing pain of the Great Wardrobe Malfunction Disaster of 2004, Janet Jackson should be asked to perform the Super Bowl halftime show in 2010. However, as Jackson is no longer musically or culturally relevant, the only feasible solution is for the Super Bowl entertainment organizers to travel back in time to 1989 and bring Jackson to the present, have her perform, and then erase her memory of these events and return her to her own time as not to disrupt the flow of human events. As an added bonus, this would require the invention of time travel, which would necessitate a large investment in US science and industry.

  • Games should offer fans much more male nudity.

  • John Madden should be hooked up to electrodes and shocked whenever he says something inane. As an alternative, NBC should offer a Madden-to-nongibberish translation service for people watching TV.

  • So that football is no longer confused with the game known here as soccer but to the rest of the world as football, the US sport will henceforth be called “American football” and the other sport will be called “ultra foosball” (or, as an alternative, “foosball XL”).

The Four Questions may be recorded for quality and training purposes

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. Today is Jersey Day at Dave’s workplace, so Dave is pretending to be from Saint Hellier and speaking in a little-known language called Jèrriais. Perhaps he should have just worn his Buccaneers jersey and a pair of jeans.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is a little glum, but looking forward to the weekend.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave points outside the window, where it is cold and dreary. It it not expected to get above 61 degrees today.

Q. What is Dave’s favorite part about going to Starbucks in the morning.

A. Dave enjoys overhearing snippets of other conversations. Right now, he’s listening to other people speculate about the settings of the White House thermostat. “I hear Obama likes it toasty,” one guy said. “Oh, I can totally see that,” another guy agreed. “I saw a picture of him in the Oval Office, and he’s not wearing a suit jacket.”

Thursday, January 29, 2009

In the news, Part I

This is the first in what I hope will be a regular series of posts in which I discuss today's most pertinent and pressing issues.

Ted Haggard: Who knew hypocrisy was the shortcut to one's very own HBO series? I would much rather watch the series about the funny New Zealand musicians -- who, I may add, have never to my knowledge lied to megachurch congregations about sex or meth use. Also, is Little Britain USA coming back?

The Steelers: Even though I have no emotional or geographic attachment to Pittsburgh's team, I'll be rooting for them on Sunday. As I have mentioned before, part of the reason I'm rooting for the Steelers is that I really don't want to see Kurt Warner lifting another Lombardi Trophy over his head. I find Warner truly odious: he is the kind of sanctimonious person who believes that anyone who doesn't believe exactly what he believes will go directly to hell. Every time I've seen him on TV, he never fails to work Jeebus1 into every sentence.

Miss Croatia: According to published reports, Josipa Kusic, the reigning Miss Croatia, said on a TV show in that country, "Faggotry is taking a stride in this country." I think it would be amusing to hear these words voiced by Stewie Griffin, the baby from "Family Guy."

Starbucks announces more layoffs, closings: The coffeehouse chain is cutting back in other areas, as well. I'm sitting in my local Starbucks right now. Instead of putting inspirational quotes from poets, authors, and world leaders on their cups and sleeves, they apparently are turning to a lower cost source for verbiage. The quote on my cup today says "I've just gone through so much in my life that pulling my top up just doesn't seem like that big a deal," and it's from Nicole Richie.

1Dave is not sure he can use the official name of this deity, as it is a registered trademark of Pat Robertson Inc.

In these tough economic times, the Four Questions are here to serve your Q&A needs

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. In anticipation of this weekend's big game1, Dave is dressed as a football. Actually, Dave is not dressed as a football. He is wearing a light blue polo shirt, tan trousers, and a pair of shoes that -- like a football -- are laced.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is feeling a little bit more confident today than he did yesterday.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave has a better handle on his workload at the office, and the weekend is approaching.

Q. Does Dave think "Country Road" is an appropriate song to play in Starbucks in the morning?

A. Dave thinks this is an odd musical selection, but points out this is a reggae version and not the John Denver song everyone has heard a gazillion times.

1Dave is not sure he can use the official name of this sporting event, as it is a registered trademark of the National Football League.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Year's Eve in Amsterdam

Yes, I know I spelled "embarrassed" wrong. Yes, I'm embarrassed about it. No, I'm not going to redo the entire video to fix the typo.

Slumdog Four-questionnaire

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. Dave is wearing a red-and-blue striped shirt that accentuates his athletic and toned upper body. In hindsight, Dave wishes he had worn another shirt, such as his black shirt. Or maybe a large black muumuu. Dave has just realized that muumuu is fun to type -- like vacuum but twice as fun!

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is consternated.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave has a lot of work to complete this week, and time is running out.

Q. Who does Dave want to see win the Super Bowl?

A. Dave is rooting for the Pittsburgh Steelers, primarily because he doesn't want to see Kurt Warner hoisting the Lombardi Trophy over his head and turning the sporting event into a religious revival.

The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but (mostly) the truth

I realize that posting 25 lies about myself, while incredibly funny, is also somewhat disingenuous. As something of an apology, I hereby offer 25 mostly true items of information about myself:

  1. I despise all bumper stickers and window decals which depict cartoon characters peeing on car logos.

  2. By nature, I feel guilty about all things at all times. However, this inherent guilty nature makes it nearly impossible for others to motivate or manipulate me by guilt (ie. send me on a guilt trip) unless those others are, in fact, my parents.

  3. I was born in New York. Yes, the one you’re thinking of. In fact, I don’t know if there is another New York.

  4. I know way too much about “The Simpsons,” especially the episodes that ran from seasons 3 through 8.

  5. My thoughts about religion are reflected in this koan from the Talmud: All is foreseen, and free will is given.

  6. For too many years, I referred to my sense of humor as “self-depreciating,” not “self-deprecating.” I didn’t know there was such a term as “self-deprecating.” I believe this would be considered irony, and not in the Alanis Morrisette sense.

  7. Speaking of which, I despise that Alanis Morrisette song about irony. A black fly in your chardonnay is not ironic.

  8. I actually do believe the children are the future. And, yes, I do weep for the future.

  9. I came out to my parents after we watched the premiere of “In & Out” on HBO. They thought I was joking at first.

  10. If I win the lottery, I will own houses in London and San Francisco. Britt can come if he wants. At the first sign of clutter, though, he’s out on his ass!

  11. Britt and I were married at the top of the grand staircase in San Francisco City Hall. We stood near the bust of Harvey Milk. My parents and Britt’s brother, sister-in-law joined us.

  12. Britt and I danced to Etta James’ “At Last” as the first dance at our reception. Michelle and Barack Obama danced to the same song at their inauguration ball -- except it was sung by Beyonce Knowles. Britt and I didn’t know that Beyonce was taking appointments for weddings, bar mitzvahs, inaugurations, and such, or else we would have tried to book her too.

  13. I enjoy eating in McDonald’s restaurants in foreign countries. He makes a point of ordering items that aren’t on the menu in the United States. That’s how he ended up sampling the delicious McTurko sandwich in Istanbul.

  14. I studied French for two years in grade school in London, and then m family thoughtlessly moved to Madrid. For several weeks, I answered questions “oui” and “non” instead of “sí” and “no.”

  15. I do not enjoy piping hot drinks. I am that guy you see in Starbucks asking for an ice cube for his coffee or tea.

  16. I went to three high schools in three time zones on two continents.

  17. I have the world’s cutest nephew. I state this not because it is my opinion, but because it is a fact.

  18. I once had dinner with Jimmy Carter and talked to him about writing and poetry.

  19. I once drove a van in President Bill Clinton’s motorcade.

  20. I have interviewed Desmond Tutu and Donald Trump, but not at the same time.

  21. I do not like broccoli or its albino twin, cauliflower.

  22. I despise tomatoes yet love anything containing tomatoes, such as ketchup or salsa.

  23. I wish to write the great American novel someday. I will settle for writing a book titled “The Great American Novel.”

  24. I began growing a beard my first day of college, and trimmed it into a goatee in 1996. This means I have sported facial hair, with some very brief exceptions, for 19 years.

  25. I am truly bad at ending stories, articles, and lists.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I believe this was originally a Far Side caption

It has been one of those days.

I wish they all could be Californian four question girls

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. Dave is wearing his khakis, a black shirt, and a very festive pirate hat. No, he's not wearing a pirate hat. Dave just wants to see if you're paying attention.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is a little irritated.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave had rearranged his morning schedule to accommodate a doctor's appointment this morning, only to receive a call from the doctor's office informing him that the doctor is sick. Paging Alanis Morrisette!

Q. What are Dave's thoughts about the US economy?

A. Dave doesn't know if you're referring to the United States economy, or US the celebrity magazine. Dave wishes you'd be more specific.

Here are 25 things that you always wanted to know about Dave but were terrified to ask

It seems like everyone on Facebook is asking me to participate in the latest fad, which involves listing 25 random things about themselves.

(Sigh.) Here goes.

25 things about Dave that are mostly (if not entirely) lies

  1. I tried to sell Obama’s former Senate seat to the highest bidder.

  2. I own no clothing. I weave and fashion exactly one pair of pants, underwear, socks, and a shirt and undershirt every evening. When I return home from work, I undo the string, clean and redye it, and start again.

  3. If Lady Charlotte and I do not return the other half of the Fitzrovia amulet to Belgravia Manor by midnight, Baron von Ampelman will take possession of Professor Calculus’s weather-control device. To the dirigible!

  4. I have invented several common items including the iPod, the paper clip, the greeting card, and the dog.

  5. I am passionate about vegetarianism. I only eat meat when I wish to prove to others that meat consumption is (a) cruel or (b) tasty.

  6. I was born in New York. But not the one you’re thinking of. The other one.

  7. The film “An American Tail” is based on my family’s history. Not because my great-grandparents were immigrants, but because they were mice.

  8. I was 7 pounds, 20 ounces, at birth. That means that every bit of weight gained since then is, essentially, baby fat and, as such, only adds to my overall cuteness.

  9. I created an alternative to tofurkey which I call turkey.

  10. I hold a degree in Lego mechanical engineering from the University of Duplo.

  11. I am the Lindbergh baby.

  12. I believe the children are the future. Sidenote: I believe the future is going to suck.

  13. I attempted to build the world’s first cold fusion reactor in the late 1980s. Instead, I accidentally developed the Lady Schick razor.

  14. I wrote the lyrics to every good Spice Girls song ever made. (Gotcha! There are no good Spice Girls songs.)

  15. I watch the Super Bowl every year for the evenly matched athletic competition, and not for the advertisements.

  16. I have never misspelld a word.

  17. I own more than 100 sets of playing cards, yet cannot play any game except for 52 pickup.

  18. My middle initial, A, stands for Azerbaijan, the country in which I was conceived. I often tell people my middle name is Andrew just so I don’t have to spell out Azerbaijan.

  19. I own the licensing and usage rights to the words “the,” “of,” “a,” and “an.” However, I have made these words freely available to the peoples of the United States, Great Britain, and New Zealand because I am kind and generous. The government of Australia is required to pay me US $1 million each year so that its citizens can use these words. What did Australia do to get on my bad side? Oh, it knows!

  20. I invented progressive lenses as a substitute for bifocals and trifocals. I refuse to let people who stand in the way of progressive causes, such as gay and lesbian marriage equality, wear these lenses. They must wear conservative lenses, which are like bifocals but have an even more polarizing view and distort everything.

  21. The original Daily Dave was shut down because I sold the rights to Disney. They planned to produce a Daily Dave movie, in which Brad Pitt experienced the events of my life. I lost creative control of the project and the project changed hands and was modified so many times. When it was finally released, it was unrecognizable. You may know it as the Hannah Montana TV show.

  22. I have seen Star Wars at least 30 times. Not the movie, mind you. The actual wars.

  23. In an alternate universe, I am the most celebrated author on the planet. In another alternate universe, there is no life on earth because the atmosphere contains nothing but sulphur and methane.

  24. I do not have an irrational fear of hot liquids.

  25. I always think of something clever for the ends of lists.

Monday, January 26, 2009

It is time for more opera haiku

Local treasure Kurt Loft has inspired me to write another opera haiku.

Wozzeck drowns in sea,
Whilst the audience drowns in
Atonal nightmares.

Find previous Opera haiku here.

The Four Questions have accepted your LinkedIn invitation

Q. What is Dave wearing?
A. Dave is wearing his Regular Monday Outfit: a polo shirt, a white undershirt, a pair of khaki pants, and dress shoes.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is somewhat anxious.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave has a lot of work to complete today -- in fact, a lot of work to complete this week -- and is eager to make sure it's all done well.

Q. How does Dave's Regular Monday Outfit differ from his Regular Tuesday Outfit, Regular Wednesday Outfit, etc.?

A. There are subtle differences to all of Dave's regular daily outfits but, if Dave explained them to you, he would then have to kill you.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Kelly Clarkson's life would suck without the Four Questions

Q. What is Dave wearing?
A. Today is Jeans Day at Dave's workplace, so Dave is wearing jeans. Dave is also wearing other clothes.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is angry.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave’s mood?

A. Dave is pissed off at assholes who think their own petty hateful agendas outweigh the fairly basic concept of equal benefits for equal work. (Perhaps you have read my earlier blog post, Thank you Kevin Beckner.)

Q. What does Dave think of Kelly Clarkson's "Life Would Suck Without You"?

A. "Life Would Suck Without You" is pure formulaic pop pablum. Dave thinks it has obviously been cooked up in a laboratory to be a chart hit. It has no organic charm, no rough edges, no real human spirit. However, Dave is not telling you that it's very damn catchy and he secretly loves it.

Thank you, Kevin Beckner, for standing up for fairness and equality

Yesterday, Hillsborough County’s new commissioner proposed ending a four-year-old rule prohibiting county staff from studying domestic partner health benefits.

You read that last sentence correctly: from studying domestic partner health benefits. It’s essentially a broadly-worded ban that stops anyone that draws a county paycheck from looking into what has become common practice for many counties, municipalities -- and is considered a best practice for most large companies in North America and Western Europe.

Beckner didn’t propose that the county end the ban, then immediately start implementing domestic partner benefits for employees. Nor did he propose that the county begin an investigation into the feasibility of domestic partner benefits. All he asked is that county staffers, in their professional capacity, be allowed to discuss it.

(Who introduced the rule? Hillsborough's own Anita Bryant, Ronda Storms. You had to ask?)

This being Hillsborough County, Beckner was voted down, 5-2. I’m not in the news business any more, and I don’t follow things as closely as I used to, but as I understand things, most of the criticism fell into two groups:

First, there was the predictable chorus of people who said gay men and lesbians are evil, ergo they are going straight to hell, ergo what’s the point of paying for health care for their partners who are also going straight to hell? (I apologise. These arguments were, in fact, illogical.)

Second, there were people who chided Beckner for having the gall to discuss something that might expand benefits at a time when the county is looking for ways to cut expenses.

My response to this second group: What the fuck!? When is the right time to address fairness, you fuckwits? Do we, as a society, think it’s only OK to repair the oversights and slights of the past when we can fit it into our budget? Equality waits for no budgeting committee.

Gay and lesbian employees deserve equal compensation for their contributions at work as their straight counterparts. This is as true during lean times as it is during the boom years.

Beckner didn’t ask the county for any additional spending, or any additional studies. Even if he had, it would a step in the right direction for a county that has been hobbled to antiequality dogma for much too long. In fact, all Beckner did is ask for restrictions to be lifted so that county officials can discuss options for fairness for employees.

There’s never a bad time for that.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

If the election had gone the other way, the Pretenders would have recorded "Back on the McCain Gang"

I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of Four Questions of the United States

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. Dave is wearing thermal underwear, a thermal undershirt, flannel-lined khakis, an insulated Oxford shirt, insulated gloves and mittens, thick wool socks, insulated shoes, a scarf, three jackets, four hats, snow goggles, and, just to be safe, an electric blanket wrapped around his face. He also has a space heater hidden somewhere on his person.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave doesn't know what type of mood he's in, as he is too cold.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave's mood?

A. Dave is colder than an ice cube at the North Pole in December. It is currently 52 degrees in Tampa. This is freezing for Floridians.

Q. How is Dave able to type, considering that he's wrapped up in so much protective gear?

A. Dave is banging away at the keyboard with his mittens and these, by sheer coincidence, are the letters that he is producing. Incidentally, this is the same exact manner in which William Faulkner wrote "Absalom, Absalom!"

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

On a cold and gray Chicago morn, four little questions are born in the ghetto -- in the ghetto

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. As Dave has just woke up, he is still wearing his Hannah Montana footie pajamas.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave wishes he were in the subjunctive mood.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave's mood?

A. Dave is an English major.

Q. Was Dave shocked by Aretha Franklin's hat at yesterday's inauguration ceremony?

A. Dave was very surprised to see Aretha Franklin's hat, as he was wearing an identical hat at that exact moment.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Warren and peace

I know all the pragmatic reasons why Barack Obama invited Rick Warren to speak at today's inauguration. I admit it's good politics. But I don't like it. Rick Warren openly disdains people like me. He says we deserve second-class treatment, from our political and religious institutions. He compares people like me to all sorts of undesirables and deviants.

Sure, Rick Warren may have done a whole litany of great things. He may go on to perfect cold fusion and end world hunger. But, for me, he'll always be the guy that convinced a whole bunch of misinformed voters in California that Britt's and my marriage certificate presented a danger to theirfreedom and liberty.

The most troublesome thing, in my opinion, about Warren's upcoming appearance is that it signals that the incoming appearance isn't ready for real equality for gay men and lesbians. Barack Obama spoke so eloquently and warmheartedly about equality when he needed LGBT support (and, perhaps more importantly, LGBT dollars) on the campaign trail, which is why Warren's invite to the inauguration dais seems like such a slap in the face. Perhaps this means LGBT causes aren't important to the Obama administration? Perhaps equality and inclusion will only go so far? Consider that Obama appointed several gay men and lesbians to positions in his administration, but none to his cabinet. Consider that after a month of bad publicity for his decision to bring Warren to Washington, Obama at last asked gay pastor Gene Robinson to deliver an invocation at an event on the Sunday before the actual inauguration. That speech, held two days ago, somehow got left out of the telecast.

Perhaps this is a good time to revive my call for a modest proposal for LGBT rights. If gay men and lesbians aren't going to receive the equal rights they deserve as Americans, then they should start taking special rights as a display of protest.
Here are the special LGBT rights I propose:

-- Gay men and lesbians receive automatic upgrades on all domestic flights over 2 hours, and all international flights. Also, LGBT travelers are entitled to one extra piece of carry-on luggage.

-- Gay men and lesbians may have their drivers' license reshot up to 10 times if they are not happy with the original photograph.

-- The LGBT community receives veto power over any new products at Starbucks.

-- Gay men and lesbians get free Wi-Fi everywhere. Also free iPhones.

-- Gay men and lesbians can cut to the front of the lines at museums, sporting events, movie theater concession stands, and restrooms.

-- Each gay man and lesbian may force one ignorant straight person to watch "Milk," a la "A Clockwork Orange," repeatedly until the message sets in.

-- Target will set aside one shopping day a week for LGBT customers. All of the dreck that is normally sold to straight clientele is set aside so that gay and lesbian customers don't have to look at it. Also, everything is 50 percent off, and the muzak is replaced with something more fashionable.

-- Gay men and lesbians may slap without impugnity anyone who says "the gay lifestyle." Other slappable phrases include "lifestyle choice" and "sexual preference." A more complete list of words and phrases will be issued later by me, after I am designated the Emperor of All Things Gay And Slappable.

-- When hungry, gay men and lesbians should dine on straight babies. (Tip o' the hat to Jonathan Swift.)

Right now, America is not a land of equality -- and Rick Warren, standing on a podium in just a few hours will be a symbol of that injustice. Since we can't fix the inequality overnight, let's make it the most fabulous inequality it can be.

I kissed four questions and I liked it (the tasted of its cherry chapstick)

Q. What is Dave wearing?

A. Dave's wearing a black polo shirt, khaki-colored khakis, a brown belt and brown suede shoes.

Q. What kind of mood is Dave in?

A. Dave is in a decaffeinated mood right now, as he had to wake up very early to go to the doctor's office. He's sure his outlook will improve once a new tenant moves into 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Q. What are the factors affecting Dave's mood?

A. Dave caffeine deficiency is affecting his ability to -- what's the word? -- think.

Q. What took Dave so long to write a new installment of the Four Questions?

A. Dave says all living beings measure time differently. What is an hour to the long-lived lumbering redwood; a year to the hyperactive hedgehog? This is to say that Dave has been busy chopping down redwood trees and slaughtering hedgehogs to make a hedgehog-upholstered log cabin.