Surviving the Night at a Haunted Super 8 on the Outskirts of Dallas

Dallas: great fucking TV  show about rich sluts. Dallas, TX: terrible fucking city where I was recently trapped overnight because American Airlines was like, "We destroy everything we touch, JK, LOL.... but no, really you do have to stay overnight in Dallas." Then they show their appreciation for your business with these food vouchers that you can't even trade with the homeless for cigarettes or something cooler than a bag of Rolos and a seltzer. IMG_0955

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What the fuck can I get for $19 at 11pm in Dallas? Whole lotta nothin'! But worry not, friends. I wasn't hungry for food so much as I was hungry for luxury and that's where American Airlines really delivered with my swank accommodations at the Super 8.  Behold the chic antique elevator from Hell:

IMG_0956

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And how you get not one but TWO shampoos (but no conditioner and certainly no toothpaste):

IMG_0960

 

 

 

 

 

 

And the linens. I was so delighted by their soft embrace that I nearly ate the damn things.

IMG_0961

 

 

 

 

 

 

Did I mention the cuisine? It was a gourmet Italian feast fit for a Head Bitch in Charge:

IMG_0957

 

 

 

 

 

 

I felt so goddam fancy that I even hand-washed all of my underwear from the weekend and made a pseudo-flag of Serbia with the blue, red, and white.

IMG_0958

 

 

 

 

 

Then I took a bunch of selfies to pass the time and try to get my mind off the fact that some sort of Texas chainsaw massacring fellow was banging on doors all night and the only comfort was the blather of those sad creatures that agreed to be on that Aaron Sorkin joint for the Home Box Office.  Behold, faces of despair.

IMG_0966 IMG_0968 IMG_0970 IMG_0971 IMG_0972 IMG_0973

Stickers As a Social Good- "Fuck You, Revenge Sites" Edition

Vigilantes! Sometimes we need them to right wrongs that those cowards in law enforcement don't have time/competence/souls for! Sometimes vigilantes are just bitter or profit-seeking dick-mold that dedicate entire websites to outing women alleged to bed some other broad's piece requiring no evidence. To those vigilantes, I say "Fuck you, get the bubonic plague, and be convinced in a fever dream that the only cure is going down on the corpse of a tree sloth." On Voting Day, I was the bad bitch that I so often am and took not one but TWO "I Voted" stickers. Witness me with my contraband below:

IMG_0794 Now my plan was to sit out the next election, dust this sucker off and wear it again in two years. BUT THE FATES HAD DIFFERENT PLANS, AS THEY OFTEN DO.  I went on my morning run to Brighton Beach and on the train ride back to my abode saw that someone had put up some janky wanted poster featuring a woman's name, photograph, and several charming accusations against her.

 

 

Screen Shot 2014-11-28 at 8.49.24 PMFirst of all, you can be a slut, you can be a man stealer, or you can be a whore, but you cannot, I  repeat , YOU CANNOT be all three at once.  Sluts give it away for free, man stealers are ultimately girlfriends, and whores get paid for that shit so make up  your damn mind when you throw around your bullshit names.Also, know who wrecks homes? PEOPLE THAT LIVE INSIDE THEM SO QUIT BLAMING THE SIDE PIECE FOR THAT SHIT. I decided that this broad in the picture looked real nice and tried to take down the whole flyer but the MTA staff was creeping around hard so I had to quickly affix my sticker over her face so at least one fewer subway car will be adorned with her face in an attempt to humiliate someone that most likely didn't do anything wrong and some asshole is just pissed at her and throwing her face up on the subway like some deranged Regina George with a MetroCard and too much free time.

So I put my contraband sticker on her face and am hoping that the motherfucker that put up the signs in the first places sees it and maybe, just maybe realizes that there is a bitch army ready to use the power of  democracy novelty stickers for good against their stupid cheater-shaming websites and their budget metro flyers.

The Woman's Complete Guide to Leaning the Fuck In

Ladies: they have so many troubles! When they aren't bleeding like wild coyotes, they are made fun of relentlessly for enjoying pumpkin-flavored beverages in the fall. When they aren't being murdered by their spouses, they are  facing exceptionally high rates of scrutiny in the workplace. Fortunately, an elaborate performance art piece depicting the decline of the capitalist intelligentsia called The New York Times is always at the ready to reveal how this might be remedied. Today, a story called "Learning to Love Criticism," by Tara Mohr essentially gave women a dozen ways to blame themselves for institutional barriers that make them feel like shit at work and several variations on leaning in to remedy them. FIND A FEMALE MENTOR! CONSULT YOUR FAVORITE FEMALE FICTION AUTHOR AND PRETEND SHE'S GIVING YOU ADVICE! IMAGINE THAT ITS ALL IN YOUR HEAD, DUMMY!

But what is missing from this advice? A NEW BOOK TO SPEND YOUR CENTS ON THE DOLLAR ON, DUH. Below are the titles I am working on for every kind woman that needs to do every kind of leaning in.

Lean Into the Wild- For the  woman in search of adventure and self-discovery, but has limited botany knowledge

Lean INXS- For the woman that needs him tonight, cause she's not sleepin'.

Lean In the Valley of Elah- For the woman who would dad-fantasy-fuck Tommy Lee Jones and isn't afraid to let you know it

Lean Cuisine In - For the woman who loves ham and cheese but eschews cold sandwiches as peasant provisions

Lean Inside Job- For the woman who whistleblew on the financier robber barons and lost her job for it while they returned unscathed to the riches of investment banking on golden parachutes

Lean In On Me- For the women who loved singer/songwriter Bill Withers, from near and afar

Star Trek: Lean Into Darkness: For the women who write Benedict Cumberbatch/Zach Quinto erotic fan fiction between job applications

The Lean-In Crowd: For the woman whose parents got confused at the video store and rented this janky Cruel Intentions knock-off at her birthday party, turning her into a social pariah and recluse

Lean In the Name of the Father: For the woman who is prison pen-pals with an Irish political dissident because goddam, they are so fly with their black curls and their rage.

Lean Into the Groove- For the woman whose only free when she's dancing.

All of these titles will be available in hardcover from Chez Massey Publications  and ready to gather dust for months as you claw powerlessly for some free time away from the excessive demands of work, family, and social expectations.

Four Advertisements That Told You Bigger Damn Lies Than Usual

Advertising! It pays for things! Like TV shows about real housewives (made of plastic that have paying jobs) and cats from Hades! And journalism about similarly important affairs! Sometimes, FAMOUS PEOPLE star in it!  Its like seeing movies for free just with no plot and mostly Photoshopped to Hello! magazine headquarters and back rendering the celebrities dead-eyed and hollow! Celebrities in ads, they're just like us! Girl, I feel you on the "one leg bent outward to look skinnier" trick. THAT SHIT WORKS.

But advertising is  a cruel mistress and a minx. It draws us in with punchy copy and sexy models then makes us spend wages we're not earning on products that will render us neither sexy nor punchy. It transforms once lithe magazines into monstrous tomes and prevents us from getting straight to the "Anaconda" video on Youtube where we all belong.  It makes otherwise sane people develop crushes on a sociopathic human Eeyore named Don Draper as he waxes poetic with his convoluted word wizardry and day drinking.

Yet some ad campaigns have seemed to transcend all that hogwash and glitter and get to the heart of something deeper, some poignant note about the endurance of the human spirit in a vulnerable world. Surely everyone has been  touched by an ad that made them  feel a little more certain in an uncertain world. To those people, I'd like to introduce myself. I am a big wet blanket full of a dose of truth more potent than the case of smallpox that hippie family's kid is carting around because he wasn't vaccinated. Which is why I am about to ruin some inspiring ads that might have momentarily warmed that delicate fist-sized organ in your chest cavity.

 

 

THAT FRIEND THAT GOT YOU, FACEBOOK

Facebook has ads for Facebook on Facebook.  The one below recently emerged and  it was soooo cute because we all have that friend that just GETS ITS when you wear a miniature green cowboy hat. But Facebook is mostly not home to those types of friends. It is home to monstrous strangers that look like people you once knew.

This ad for Facebook was found ON Facebook. WHO ARE YOU TRYING TO CONVINCE?

You see, once upon a time, only an elite gang of private school brats and outlying bandits that craftily stole .edu email address with impunity were able to have Facebook accounts. Back then, it was super exciting to connect to someone you hadn't seen since junior high because it had only been like five years since you had seen them. Maybe back then, this ad had some truth. But the democratization of Facebook means that longer stretches of time pass between when you last spoke to someone and when you connect with them on the ole 'book.  Conversations nowadays go something like this:

Jean: Glory, Miranda! So great to get connected again! It has been an age!

Miranda: Hasn't it though? We had so much fun together on the pep squad! I can't even remember the last time we saw each other.

Jean: I think it was in 1988 at the 10 year reunion at the Marriott. You and Pascal had just returned from your honeymoon to the Corn Palace out in Mitchell.  What HAVE you been up to?

Miranda: Oh when our last daughter moved out, Pascal and I  sold the house and moved into a cabin where I run a vegan nihilist blog while he builds an empire on Etsy selling crafts made from squirrel bones. What about you?

Jean: I'm a professor at Columbia and spend most  my weekends hosting underground salon discussion where local elites plan a fascist coup to further fortify existing structures of power and lord over the unwashed masses...(PAUSE) I do love cooking with tempeh!

Miranda: Oh tempeh is on its way out, I'm much more vegetable than grain-based in the recipes for my blog that is ultimately pointless in this world void of meaning or any truly moral actors!(PAUSE) So....you always did have big ambitions! Salon discussions, huh?

Jean: That's what I fucking said, isn't it, you wood-dwelling peasant?

Miranda: Your revolution will fail, Jean. All the revolutions will fail.

(PAUSE)

Jean: You'll have to give me the link to your blog!

Miranda: Will do! Great catching up!

Jean: SAME!

IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING, ADIDAS

ali20adidas  Oh the old, "Let's put our transcendent word salad inspiration copy on top of a larger-than-life public personality and make it seem like she/he said it!" trick.  It is a sneaky tactic that has convinced people that Benjamin Franklin invented capitalism and that Harriet Tubman practiced yoga.  The "Impossible Is Nothing" campaign did it to a man (presumably with his estate's permission but STILL) with whom one ought not trifle.

First, because Muhammad Ali knows very well that there are a lot of things that are impossible. For example,  standing up to unjust wars  like the one in Vietnam and not paying dearly for it or recovering from Joe Frazier's vicious left hook. Secondly, because Mohammad Ali has made so many more pointed and blistering critiques of sports, society, race, and war that associating him with this drivel ought to be treason or something. Also, come on Adidas: "Impossible" has ten letters in it, which is just not that big of  a word.

 

EVERYTHING DOVE EVER SAYS ABOUT SELF ESTEEM, UNILEVER

The soap-sized gap between your daughter and her fully realized self.

Before Dove started their self-esteem workshops for girls, the world was a wasteland free of any ways of giving girls a sense that they were beautiful such as gentle and encouraging parenting tactics or movements designed to affirm them like Girl Scouts, sports, positive role models, books with strong female leads, feminist teachers, or a kind network of  friends. THANK GOD DOVE CAME ALONG TO GIVE THE FIRST DOSE OF BEAUTIFUL FEELINGS TO THESE GIRLS. It only took them so long because their parent company, Unilever, was working on its latest Fair & Lovely campaign to promote the popular skin-lightening products that exists because international beauty standards are still in a chokehold by insidious white supremacy so women all over the world put toxic chemicals on their skin to make it lighter.  The good people at Unilever's ad team were also putting the finishing touches on a new Axe Body Spray advertisement where women dressed up in leather cat suits and crawled on the floor toward men as if he were a laser pointer because women degenerate into animals at the mere mention of Axe products. Girls are beautiful, women are sex-crazed cat monster people who could go down a few shades.

LIVE RICHLY CAMPAIGN, CITIBANK

I get it, you guys have a really good copy team.

 

To be clear, I have mad respect for the entire horrifyingly effective Live Richly campaign that Citibank ran early in the century. It included other cutesy and feel-good ads like, "Money can't buy happiness. But it can buy marshmallows, which are kind of the same thing." It was all "hahahahahaha, we understand the neurotic and soul-crushing obsession you have with money, it really is hard to have those feelings. We get it. Come trade a smile. Buy a flower. Laugh harder. Sign up for a financial product that we'll earn obscene amounts of interest on. I mean...eat marshmallows. Yes, yes that's right. Sign at the bottom and initial where I've highlighted. There there, I'm sure she's going to call you."