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Aaaaand Philly Productivity Week continues...

On Monday, we paid tribute to the many elephants in the room. 

Today, we thought we'd let you know what's keeping us going:

1.) There was a mix-up in the warehouse and our publisher accidentally sent Chris’ 20 author copies of Brainwashing… to a stranger. At first this was upsetting to Chris and funny to Meg. Now it’s funny to Chris and really, really funny to Meg. We’re not sure if it’s funny or not to the person somewhere in the United States or Canada who opened a surprise package from Avon, Mass and found 20 copies of a bright orange book called "Brainwashing for Beginners", but we hope they use it wisely, possibly by mailing copies to major media outlets. We wouldn’t be mad if they mailed one to the Gersh Agency…

2.) The fact that there’s an episode in season four of Maude where Maude gets debilitating stress diarrhea. 'Cuz BEEN THERE. DONE THAT, SISTER.

3.) Chris has a master’s degree.

This hasn’t really been a “career builder”, but sometimes when he and Meg are feeling particularly unemployed, he’ll take it out of the closet, roll it open, and let Meg read it aloud in her best Alan Rickman voice. It can be a real emotional game changer.

4.) Last week, Meg said, out loud, to a large group of people: “It’s a beautiful night for a rotisserie chicken.” And meant it.

5.) The other day, Chris went to get a haircut before The Job Interview That Went Nowhere. As the stylist was finishing up, he said, “Don’t worry, this hair cut will get you laid,” then put his hand on his shoulder, leaned in conspiratorially and whispered, “I guarantee it.” This is the first time a stranger has flirted with Chris since a drunken ex-umpire tried to cop a feel during a Phillies game this spring.

6.) ...And is a much more glamorous version of this text Meg sent Chris from the bus:

2birds1blog: That's sad. Since 1984.™

7.) Meg’s promise to Chris that she’ll one day, at orgasm, open her eyes and exclaim, “JEEPERS!” in an over-articulated 1950’s co-ed voice.

8.) Meg drunk-ordered the book Mastery, Tyranny, and Desire: Thomas Thistlewood and His Slaves in the Anglo-Jamaican World off Amazon last weekend.

She will let you know if it’s good.

9.) We’re tentatively scheduled to speak at Yale in January. We haven’t prepared what we’re going to talk about and we’re not even sure what day we’re going, but we have purchased boat shoes!

10.) This NEW picture of Dave where he looks comically photoshopped in.

Thank God for small favors. <3


I've been trying to craft a PUlitzer/PUbic hair joke for 20 minutes and it's not happening. So...hey.

Chris and I finished editing! Woo hoo! (Or BOOYAKASHA!!!!!!!!1!!, as I’m obviously thinking. God I hate myself.) Here’s a list of things we were “gently scolded” by our editors for saying:
- Referring to the miracle of conception as “squirting your wife up a keeper”
- Every single cannibal joke (and there were a lot of them)
- A reference to the world’s economy locking itself in its room and cutting its arms while listening to Morrissey
- Countless, countless masturbation jokes
- Referring to intercourse as “getting your gears stripped”
- A reference to all homosexuals burning in hell, which was considered quote, “potentially homophobic”
- The phrase “a semen-stained Halston gown away from being the human embodiment of 1976”
- An imaginary Roseanne blooper reel where John Goodman calls Laurie Metcalf “six cunts in a five cunt basket”
- Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay too many Asian jokes
- The phrase “little kids can’t cross the street without getting molested six-ways-to-the-weekend”
- The phrase “with a honker like a Jewish anteater”
- Numerous references to fingerbanging and/or fingerblasting
- A fictional yoga pose called “The Senator’s Erection”
- A non sequitur about Hilary Clinton being a lizard person from beyond the moons of Saturn
- The sentence “I’m an octoroon, but the bad part isn’t black—it’s German.”
- A Bennington girl drinking an unpretentious little Pinot out of bowls made from human skulls
- Even more fingerbanging references, frankly
- The imaginary newspaper headline: “Weirdo Dies in France, As Usual”
- A joke about how it’s not incest if you and your cousin went to different middle schools
- A joke about urinating into a slot machine and still managing to win $200
- A joke about joining the army expecting to be in Gryffindor, but it turns out you’re more of a Slytherin
- The concept of shoveling a sundae into your mouth like a “gravedigger with the squirts”
- Too many Dress Barn jokes
- Too many ghosts
- Referring to a sex scene in a serious novel as “classy, but still totally functional, if you know what I mean.”
- The phrase “jive cracker”
- An imaginary Abercrombie & Fitch graphic tee that says “Fat Girls Give Good Head”
- An imaginary government-themed gay porn movie called “The Department of Health and Homo Services”, in which a freshman Tea Party representative is ordered to separate his powers and get ready to see what big government can do to him
…I now understand why Chris’ grandmother’s review for our last book was simply: “A mite racy, but funny.” Truer words were never spoken, Grandmother. Truer words were never spoken.


Let’s just acknowledge all the elephants in the room...

(Chris: Now let’s put a picture of an elephant and a picture of a room. Ooo! And can it have a speech bubble that says, “Hi, my name is Chad. I’m in sales.”??
Meg, eager to be agreeable in light of recent events: …Sssssure.)

- Meg hasn’t been posting because she fucked up her hand. Well guess what, butter? It’s feeling better and I’m back. I can grip things again, which is genuinely exciting. And kind of sounds like I’m referring to hand jobs, but I just mean I can blow dry my hair again. And drive stick. If I ever could. Either way, thank you for your patience while my little talon healed.

- Meg and Chris got into a TIG ‘OLE FIGHT. Which didn’t “enhance” productivity, per se. That being said, we’re friends again. The doors of communication were flung open so wide the doorknob made a dent in the side of the wall when I called Chris hysterically crying the night I broke my hand. It was that kind of hysterical crying where you can’t catch your breath and have to repeat everything twenty times because everything just comes out as “ghhhheh, ghhhheh, ghhhheh, GAAAAH!” It was embarrassing. But not as embarrassing as the admission that I don’t remember the twenty minutes of the phone call when he pitched book ideas to me because I took four Tylenol PMs, passed out, and went on “Auto Agree”. But they’re good ideas sober, so we’re back in business!

- Chris hasn’t been posting because he went on an extended “Visiting Loved Ones Who Might Die” tour. It was, to put it mildly, extremely depressing. Silver lining: he found out he’s descended from Pocahontas! Since then, he’s been spending most of his time wearing a denim vest and a shit-load of turquoise jewelry, painting with all the colors of the wind.

- Meg’s dad emailed her last week to reprimand her and Chris for not posting regularly. And SHIT. GOT. REAL. Because you know you’ve fucked up when the official Non-Nagging Parent nags you.


- The job search has been humiliating for both of us, but probably more so Chris because he's gotten further. He actually got a call from a real live human woman who found his resume on Career Builder and wanted him to come in for an interview. He got a haircut, clipped his moustache, and squeezed into his cotton Dockers and went down for the interview, only to find that the woman who had contacted him had been fired in the interim. He was allowed to interview with someone else who told him not to get his hopes up and assured him that a 27-year-old with a master's degree and three published books is still entry-level. There might be something in King of Prussia in a few months. He will let Chris know. South of the Mason-Dixon, Meg was denied a job at a bakery.

- Chris bought Meg an “apology candle”, but Meg did not return the favor. This will be remedied in 3-5 days. In lavender.

- There’s a porno spoof of Pocahontas called Poke-a-Hot-Ass. This isn’t an elephant in the room as much as a play on words that seriously got Meg through some hard times in 2007.

- Also the guitarist from GWAR died. This has fucked everything up.

- We’re out of elephants (for the moment. The night is young and we have a brand new bottle of generic Adderall), but we recognize that as it stands, this is a short blog post and probably will not suffice. That being said, we also recognize that the entire reason we’re together right now is to do a nauseating amount of editing on book #3 before Thanksgiving and we haven’t started yet. Therefore, I will now show you pictures of things in Chris’ apartment that fascinate me and allow Chris to explain them, if he can.

This ceramic piggyback from Tampa, Florida:
“Oh, I bought that for you during a layover in June. Happy Hanukkah.” [Ed. Note: BOO YEAH!!!!!!!!1!!] [Ed. Note: Full disclosure, I actually said “BOOYAKASHA!!!!!!!!1!!”, which has somehow worked its way into my vocabulary seven years after the fact and taken my self-loathing to a level I never dreamed possible.]

This Gone with the Wind musicbox:
Primarily because this Scarlett O’Hara looks disturbingly like Ex Co-Blogger Eddie.

“A few months ago a friend sent me a package and I undid the paper and the box was for a musical Gone with the Wind musical statuette. I thought, ‘Oh, how funny. She bought me a present and went to the trouble of finding a Gone with the Wind musical statuette box to wrap it in.' Then I opened the box and it was actually a Gone with the Wind musical statuette. It plays 'Tara’s Theme' very, very slowly.”

This large fleece wolf blanket:
“I have a lot of aunts and I’m kind of hard to shop for. I also, in all seriousness, like this and it’s warm.”

This signed picture of Christine Baranski with Certificate of Authenticity:
“This was a gift from the same friend that got me the Gone with the Wind musical statuette. It's also my favorite object in the world. Cut-up episodes of Cybill on YouTube literally kept me from committing suicide in 2008. I wrote a letter to Christine Baranski thanking her and she never wrote back. I don’t blame her.”

This picture of wee baby Chrislet on the fridge:
“I was going to tell you not to put that on the blog, but I’d feel like a bad sport because there are so many pictures of baby Meglet. Note that I’m already worried.”

This compilation of Jeff Leedy cartoons called “The Check is in the Mail”:
We were in a desperate, desperate time crunch while writing Brainwashing... and my discovery of this on Chris' bookshelf derailed us in a way that's borderline concerning. We spent a solid hour curled up on the floor, flipping through this book, laughing at, not with, the cartoonists. Here are some of our favorites:
This ceramic ornament of Garfield embracing an entire turkey:
“Meg, get out of my hope chest.”


Birthday Thoughts

I had a BIG OLD case of writer’s block trying to start this post. I was staring blankly at my iTunes wishing I could write when I thought, “OH, I should listen to some Squirrel Nut Zippers! That’ll help! So help me God, I don’t know what my logic was there.
My twenty-seventh birthday is November 25th, 2011. I will officially be in my late twenties. This struck home the other day when I realized that early episodes of “Friends” were about people my age or marginally younger. This revelation was followed by “Oh, God. I hope I’m not Ross.” Advanced degree in something obscure? Check. “Not conventionally attractive,” in an ethnic way? Provided “cracker” counts as ethnic, check. Obsessed with a Jewish waitress? No, but it’s the kind of thing that WOULD happen to me. Let me warn you: figuring out that you’re a louder, bawdier, drunker, more Episcopalian David Schwimmer doesn’t make aging any easier.
It’s also going to be a sad birthday because Mom doesn’t have a phone. (“AT&T says I owe them three hundred dollars! We’ll see who gives in first.”) Mine was, apparently, a difficult birth, which my mother lovingly recounts every year like a war story. “Oh, around this time eight years ago, the midwife said she couldn’t do it, we’d have to go to the hospital.” “Twelve years ago, we were driving to the hospital in the sleet!” (This is a bigger deal in Texas than you might think.) “Sixteen years ago, the doctor told me he didn’t need to do an episiotomy, it was already torn.” I’ll spare you the details of “I had cold sores all over my face” and the destruction my skull allegedly wrought on her tailbone. Anyway, the story of The Birth is very much a part of my birthday, much like the recitations of the Ten Plagues are central to Passover. It’ll be sad not to hear it this year.
Being born on or near Thanksgiving, predictably, sucks. Not only does it mean I was conceived on Valentine’s Day, but no one ever is around or in the mood to do anything on my birthday. I used to sulk about this, but this year I’ve taken the opportunity to create Birthday Week:
Thursday November 24: Thanksgiving. I get a turkey leg because it’s “almost my birthday.”
Friday November 25: Actual Birthday. Giant Camel, Meg, Ex-Co-Blogger Eddie, “some of the West Philly hipster queers if they’re around,” and I are going to Ethiopian food, bowling, and the gay piano bar. Can you imagine? A gay piano bar AFTER a holiday and DURING a three day weekend? “Okay. Ooooookay. We’re going to have a drink, then we’re going to do ‘Thank You For Being a Friend’ again, then another drink, then ‘Those Were the Days,’ then drink, then ‘Moon River.’”
Saturday November 26: GWAAAAAAR! I love Gwar, and if you don’t, fuck you.
Sunday November 27: Rest; cake.
Monday November 28: “Alternate” birthday for people who were out of town for Actual Birthday. Saints play Giants. A shot for every touchdown, field goal, or safety. Will there be black and gold temporary hair color? Is the Pope a shithead?
Tuesday November 29: Write obscene fan mail to Zachary Quinto. LIBERAL use of construction paper.
Wednesday November 30: Rest; eat entire Whitman’s sampler in bed.
Thursday December 1: Philadelphia’s premier lesbian bar, Sisters, has a Thursday special: for ten bucks you get eight drink tickets and access to the buffet.
So, that’s my plan. 27. Halfway to 54, which is halfway to having been dead for twenty years.


The Deep End of the Ocean

I got a really aggressive email last week from a reader telling me to go eff myself because I never wrote a follow-up post about The Great Towel Exchange with Alex. While it's genuinely exciting to know that there's a human being out there who appreciates Towel and his journey and isn't me, come on guyget a Twitter account. I can't drop everything and write a blog post every time I'm reunited with a towel. Except I totally can!

As far as epic reunions go, this one was up there. It was a lot like that scene in The Color Purple when Whoopi Goldberg is reunited with her sister and long-lost children. Except with white people. And towels. And in a Target and not rural Georgia. And we were only separated for about a week. So, exactly like that scene in The Color Purple.

Take my hand, reader. Let's go on an emotional journey.

Here we are in the towel section in Target.

Meg: Alex, do you feel like a kid in a candy store?!

Alex: No. I feel like an adult in a towel store. [walks away]

HA HA, ohhh someone was feeling cranky that day! It was also at this point that I ran into a friend-of-a-friend who I hadn't seen in over two years. She was there because she's obviously doing wonderfully at her job and just bought a condo in Glover Park and was setting up house. She asked what I was up to these days and I was all, "Oh. Nothing. Buyin' towels. Settling scores. The usual." Our books did come up, but then she asked if they were paying the bills and I had to be like, "No. Not really. Or at all. I need a job. I probably shouldn't be buying towels. Ha ha. WELL, IT WAS REALLY GOOD TO SEE YOU!" Just once I'd like to run into someone from my past and be like, riding a shark and 30 pounds lighter and wearing a cape made of 100-dollar bills and the phone numbers of the many people who want to have sex with me. Not buying towels on a Friday night in stretch pants.

But I digress.
Alex found a towel that was to his liking.

I picked up a new shower liner because I'm an infamously frivolous spender.

Then I went next door and stickered the somewhat uncomfortably racist "Singing Rabbi" in Bed Bath and Beyond.

Finally, we took the party to IHOP to make the official trade.


Welcome home, baby. Welcome home.

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