Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Life In Iraq

Draw your own conclusions:

I wonder why they hate us?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Big Smoke '06

My Ticket to the Big Smoke

Like trick-or-treaters on Halloween or kids on Christmas morning, thousands of suit-wearing middle aged men dashed excitedly through the doors of the Marriott Marquis banquet room on Tuesday evening to raid the booty found at the year's biggest cigar extravaganza-- The Big Smoke.

Like bid-seeking frat pledges on a scavenger hunt, they ran from table to table with their books of free cigar coupons, tearing out the paper strips with one hand and exchanging them for the Dominican Republic's finest as they somehow managed to puff coronas and sip expensive scotch at the same time.

I was one of them. Though not yet middle-aged.

One person I overheard called the scene, "like the floor of the New York Stock Exchange." If the floor of the NYSE is anything like it is in the movie Trading Places, I agree. Of course, the stock exchange doesn't have cigars and Johnny Walker Blue Label being handed out by cleavage-baring young women.

Or does it? I've never been there.

In any case, I've got about 32 cigars now. And memories that will last a lifetime...

Read no further unless you want to know that Vito, is in fact, NOT DEAD!!!!

Whoops, may have botched the spoiler warning there.

Don't get too upset. How do I know Vito's not dead?? I saw him. He was at the big smoke, looking very unafraid of being whacked (although he did have a bodyguard).

I swear, it's Vito

Hard to tell from that image, but it's him all right. I was as shocked as you are. But not as shocked as I was when I found out who else was at the Big Smoke that night...

Phil Leotardo

Shocking, I know. Sopranos-watchers know that Phil Leotardo, pictured above, personally whacked Vito. But did he? Seeing the two at the same event raises the obvious question: Did Phil merely make it LOOK as if he killed Vito? Maybe he just wanted him out of his family's life. Perhaps Vito is living happily in New Hampshire, with his boyfriend, Mr. Flapjack.

It certainly seems possible, given what I witnessed last night!

This blog has a nice little Big Smoke round up. Although he apparently missed the big Sopranos bombshell.

So who's going to help me smoke all these cigars???

Oral Cancer's Best Buddies

A shot of some of my fellow party-goers... a future Port Authority president, a future congressman, and the two best lawyers in America:

Had a Smokin' Good Time
It's Good To Be Quarterback

Tom Brady Gets All The Hotties

Drew Bledsoe, you blew it. Tony Romo knows how to be QB in style. He's dating Jessica Simpson.

In high school, the quarterback gets the hottest cheerleader. In the NFL, they get the hottest celebrities.

I chose the wrong line of work.
Say It Ain't So, Kramer

Why, Kramer? Why?

My innocence has shattered.

One of television's most beloved characters, Kramer, will never again be the same goofy, lovable oaf we all watched do increasingly wacky things on the show Seinfeld.

This week, he spewed racial epiphets at black people who were heckling him in the crowd. That's a mild way of putting it. "He lost his mind," is a bit more accurate. As CNN reports:

A video posted on shows Richards launching into the tirade after two black audience members started shouting at him that he wasn't funny.

Richards retorts: "Shut up! Fifty years ago we'd have you upside down with a f------ fork up your a--."

He then paces across the stage taunting the men for interrupting his show, peppering his speech with racial slurs and profanities.

"You can talk, you can talk, you're brave now mother------. Throw his a-- out. He's a n-----!" Richards shouts before repeating the racial epithet over and over again.

While there is some chuckling in the audience throughout the outburst, someone can be heard gasping "Oh my God" and various people "ooh" after Richards uses the n-word.

Eventually someone says: "It's not funny. That's why you're a reject, never had no shows, never had no movies. `Seinfeld,' that's it."

Easily offended people might not want to view the video. (Warning, loud, coarse language)

Kramer compounded his mistake by issuing a barely coherent, rambling apology, which sounded, at times, as if he was justifying his behavior. He also said this gem of a line:

"I'm not a racist. That's what's so insane about this"

Actually, what's so insane about this is you, Kramer. This line, "I'm not a racist," is a typical one uttered by one who's been caught spewing racial epiphets. But it's a meaningless one. KKK members don't call themselves racists. No one calls themselves a racist. The "racist" label is applied to one who behaves in a racist manner. And Kramer, well, that's exactly what you did.

During Kramer's "apology" on Letterman, some people in the audience started laughing. Jerry Seinfeld angrily told them to "Shut up, this isn't funny." But I'm willing to bet that half the people in that audience didn't know what had occurred. Letterman made some jokes in his monologue, but the show was taped around 4 in the afternoon, in front of people who probably weren't sitting at their computers all day reading the breaking news. They can be forgiven for thinking this was some sort of joke.

It seemed like a joke. What celebrity in their right mind would appear live, on air, without a prepared apology? Kramer looked as if he had no idea what he was going to say next.

If you didn't see it, here you go.

Most. Awkward. TV. Moment. Ever.

What should he have done? How bout any one of these:

"I sincerely apologize. There's no excuse for my actions. I deeply regret those things I said and the people hurt by them. I hope that they can forgive me."

"I crossed the line when I yelled those hurtful things at the people heckling me. Out of frustration, I said the most hurtful thing I could think of to say. It was a mistake, and I hope that they, and all who saw my horrifying display, can forgive me."

"I wasn't saying 'nigga,' I actually said 'Nikka' as in the pop singer, Nikka Costa. She's one HOT tamale."

"I have a drinking problem."

Letterman's face, after Kramer's done talking, says it all (check it out on the video).

Kramer, I'll miss you.

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