The following is a lightly-edited version of a tweet storm I made on October 9, 2019. All utterances were made with the assumption that the audience has a sense of humor. Those without a sense of humor should navigate away from this page.
So I’ve been getting back into dating. I’ve been on a lot of dates. And I’m just now appreciating what a bad system we have for dating.
Because on the first date, you’re not allowed to ask the questions you should be asking. You’re SUPPOSED to ask your date “What movies do you like?” Or “What candy do you like?”
But the question you SHOULD ask is, “Is farting in bed going to be a dealbreaker?”
And you SHOULD follow that with, “After I use the towel like dental floss for my legs, I put it right back on the rack. Are you going to have a problem with that?” She responds, “My mother’s never not going to walk into the house without knocking, how are you going to prepare for that?”
And after conversing like this over your chicken and waffles you’ll have a good idea of whether or not you’ll enjoy living together FOR LIFE. Just be sure to talk loud enough for everyone else to hear you, in case they have mistakenly taken an interest in either of you.
Thank you. Thank you. Pretty new at standup. Most of you already know I’m also an author. *Light applause* Thank you. You’re very kind. Now you would not BELIEVE how much rejection you go through being a new author.
I’ve often compared having an unpublished book to walking around in broad daylight with a gold bar and hoping it gets stolen. But you’ve got it all wrong! The bums you’re walking around aren’t interested in gold. They want COCAINE.
They’re like, “You keep your well crafted prose and your witty human and your slow, poignant revelations about human nature. Give me a book I can SNORT.”
Life on the streets is cruel to these people, you must understand.
And then there’s that one sun-weathered bum with only three teeth who’s like: “Gimme a kiss.”
And you can’t buy him off with money or drugs. He’s just looking for you to humiliate yourself. Because he knows you will. And once you do he laughs in your face. AND YOU DESERVE IT.
You let yourself get caught by the biggest scam in the business. And now you’re married to the most louse-ridden vanity press anyone could imagine. I tell ya, getting published is the hardest thing you’ll ever do.
Was that metaphor too intense for you? Think of how much worse the real publishing process is. You send out hundreds of queries to people who look like they got their Master’s Degree in “How to look like you teach kindergarten” and you get on your knees and beg.
And there are no rules! Nobody knows what a “good” query letter looks like. This agent wants you to have five books already published. And this agent wants you to compare your books to others already on the market.
Then there’s this agent who wants the query letter to be written from the point of view of a character in the book, and I’m like, “Who’s the FREAKING peyote dealer who keeps selling to all the literary agents?”
Seriously, where can I find him (and hopefully have him arrested)? Don’t you see, he’s ruining the book industry? And I can prove he exists. You know how? BECAUSE DOGS ARE GETTING PUBLISHED!
Literal dogs. Isn’t that insane?
Some time ago, I saw that Kate Middleton’s dog had a book deal, and reading that was like a sucker punch to the gut, not just for me but for every author with a manuscript.
The authors on my left are like, “I can hump a palace guard’s leg, too. Where’s MY book deal?”
The authors on my right are like “I can eat my own vomit. Where’s MY book deal?”
And I’m like, “My mailman lives in constant fear of me, knows his life will end at my hands, and that I will eat his face. Where’s MY book deal?”
*Shrug* Hey, some dogs are Dobermans. What can I say? But then, after so much querying, it feels like I’m like the Hound of the FREAKING Baskervilles.
You shouldn’t be surprised when an author turns evil. It’s happened so many times that it has to be expected by now. Not only do you have the obvious historical example of how Hitler got started with a book deal, or all those weird cults Stephen King has started.
But you also have the absolute, number 1, most evil author of all time rising like a mountain over the literary landscape. I am of course talking about A.A. FREAKING Milne.
Think about what A.A. Milne did: one day, he gives his son a teddy bear and asks, “What are you going to call him.” And, being a snot-nosed brat who thinks he’s a genius, little Christopher Robin says, “His name is Poo.”
And Mr. Milne, with a greedy twinkle in his eye, says to himself: “I am going to make this ADORABLE.”
And he sets to work building a brand around “The Poo Bear.” He changes the spelling just enough to make it adorable, and what does he do?
He writes a bestselling children’s book about “The Poo Bear”. And he sells a BILLION pounds of merchandise based on “The Poo Bear”. People give little Poo Bears to their babies, who wipe their faces with “The Poo Bear” and suck on the hands of “The Poo Bear”.
They take baths with “The Poo Bear” and get him under their fingernails. They bring “The Poo Bear” to the dinner table, and they embrace “The Poo Bear” smearing its waxy filaments into every fold of their chubbiness. Meanwhile, A.A. Milne is laughing his way to the bank.
And when Disney got the rights, “The Poo Bear” became omnipresent. Not only is he (appropriately) on diapers, but also toothbrushes and bandages. “The Poo Bear” rules your family’s first aid kit!
And he’s even got his Poo hands on the levers of global political power. The Poo Bear is banned in China, not because of anything he represents, but because he looks TOO MUCH like the Chinese president.
Do you realize how insane that is?
Laws have been written to keep anyone from making the comparison. The Poo Bear is the number-1 concern of communism today!
It’s made such an impression on me that I want to get into the game. Hey Disney, I’ve got a new branded character I want you to market.
“What do you call it?”
The Excrement Elephant.
“That’s great. Here, have a billion dollars.”
AND YOU KNOW IT WOULD WORK! You know it would. Of course it would. The whole thing makes too much sense. This is the world we live in. We can all be just as evil, given the chance. Why not?
Thank you all. You’ve been a wonderful audience. Finish off that Long Island Iced Tea and we’ll see if I ever do this again.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m still technically at work.