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TBS Sitcoms, Remixed

TBS Sitcoms, Remixed

If you’re like me, you enjoy nothing more than watching a classic sitcom rerun while enjoying a delicious burrito – it’s comfort food for the soul.  I pondered in the 90’s why there was no cable station just showing (relatively recent) sitcom reruns 24/7.  For the last few years, TBS has pretty much taken that approach.

I’ve seen practically every episode of every half-decent sitcom ever – I even went through a sad Drew Carey Show phase – and pretty much can recite scripts verbatim.  (Maybe “can paraphrase scripts” is more accurate – drinking affects memory.)  How sweet would it be if you could remix these shows Ronson-style to give yourself a little dose of freshness?  In a perfect world…

Two and A Half Friends

to come
Watch out Joey, you might get a foot in your ass

The Pitch: Familiar Friends + medical procedural + a fat kid = gold

Premise:  Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow) and the rest of the Friends gang embark on a wacky taxi road trip to surprise Joey in LA.  Driving through Malibu, Phoebe, startled to see old flame Ryan (Charlie Sheen) in a vehicle going the opposite direction, inadvertently swerves into his lane.  Ryan/Charlie overcompensates and drives right into a Korean taco truck while Phoebe’s taxi is atomized by an oncoming semi – her life is saved only by the presence of a huge bag of cotton candy she’d brought for Joey and a medically significant amount of botox.  The only other survivor in this horrible, yet wacky, tragedy is the fat little kid nephew (that fat kid) in Ryan/Charlie’s car.

Guilt-ridden, Phoebe and Joey agree to raise the fat kid, which will be difficult because Phoebe will suffer from a string of mysterious medical setbacks as she recovers from her grievous injuries.  And, since Phoebe was uninsured at the time of the accident, Joey must work as the butler of the surprisingly non-Korean owner of the Korean taco truck, Mitch (Kurtwood Smith), to pay for the damages.

Hilarity ensues when:  The fat kid overcomes survivor’s guilt by participating in sexual innuendo-laced banter with his wacky new guardians.  Phoebe’s ongoing medical issues will be solved, hilariously, be a stream of guest star physicians that combine the deductive science skills of Dr. House with the life-affirming antics of Patch Adams, all while enjoying some innuendo-laced banter.   Mitch’s demeaning butler demands of Joey will often result in a surprising, but heartwarming, moral epiphany at the end of the episode.

Must-see episodes:  The One With Sepsis; The One With A Hilarious Case Of Mistaken Identity; The One With A Lot Of Hormonal Teenage Awkwardness Jokes

Everybody Loves Seinfeld

to come
Wednesdays at 7:00 and 7:30

The Pitch:  Indecent Proposal + gratuitous cleavage + wacky family antics = gold

Premise:  Due to her husband’s failure to properly fill out paperwork during a routine medical procedure, there is a wacky hospital mixup which results in Debra Barone (Patricia Heaton) accidentally receiving a breast transplant from Shoshanna Lonstein.  On a weekend trip to Long Island, Jerry (Jerry Seinfeld) literally stumbles into “the rack that got away” and vows to make Debra his bride, despite the fact that she is married.  Jerry ultimately wins Debra’s love, much to the initial dismay of  her husband Ray (Ray Romano) and his family, by cutting her a check for $75 million.

Hilarity ensues when:  Ray subsequently declares war on Jerry and vows vengeance, but Jerry turns the tables on Ray by purchasing the newspaper he works for and giving each member of Ray’s family $25 million in exchange for cutting ties with Ray and pledging allegiance to Jerry.  Given Ray’s contractual obligation to the newspaper, Jerry toys with making Ray his butler, but instead decides to make him the theater reviewer and ombudsman – ombudsmen really are subject to a lot of criticism.  Ray’s weekly efforts to thwart Jerry will usually come up short due to lack of foresight, insufficient funding/planning and unrealistic optimism.

Must-see episodes:  A Decent Proposal (pilot); Where Is Avenue Q, It’s Not Even On This Map; You’re A Terrible Cook, How Are You Going To Write A Children’s Cookbook Without Plagiarizing?

Sex and The Office

to come
They seriously have a lot of fucking employees, no wonder DMI is having some cash flow issues

The Pitch:  Fish out of water + alternative lifestyles + mustard-colored couture = gold

Premise:  Michael Scott (Steve Carell) finally decides to take the party planning committee to the next level by hiring a NYC PR firm to promote the annual Arbor Day blowout.  Samantha (Kim Cattrall) accepts the job and, after too many fajita shooters at Chili’s, unwittingly ends up in a Craigslist Casual Encounter with Tobey (Paul Lieberstein), where they discover a common interest in “furry” roleplay.  Samantha, torn between the greatest sexual satisfaction she has ever known or moving back to the more glamorous lifestyle of NYC, ultimately and shockingly decides to move to Scranton and become Tobey’s full-time furry co-enthusiast.  By convenient coincidence, Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) is also drawn to Scranton by pheromones after randomly meeting The Office‘s long-suffering documentary filmmaker at a lounge in NYC.

Hilarity ensues when:  Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) really don’t have much going on so they decide to move down, too, and become temps at Dunder Mifflin.  Jim (John Krasinski) and Pam (Jenna Fischer) fume that they are no longer the “hot couple” once Miranda introduces Angela (Angela Kinsey) to the Church of Later Day Sapphos and Darrell (Craig Robinson) and Charlotte become an item following a touching karaoke duet of Pitbull’s ballad, “Hotel Room Service”.

Must-see episodes:  The Scranton Steamer; Beets and Crimes; Fucking A, Please Stop The Voiceover Already


Reassessing My Life’s Goal

Reassessing My Life’s Goal

Yeah, goal, singular.  I’m too tired to multitask this kind of stuff.  More on that in a minute.  I need to spend a second complaining about how fucking sore my legs are – this is very likely critical information for both the casual and hardcore reader of this site.  I had a goal of running 100 miles this month, which is a pretty modest, but complicated somewhat by taking off ten more days off than I’d planned. I still have 26 miles to go.  At least after tomorrow I can go down to five milers if I want.  Standing up for 13 straight hours Monday didn’t help matters much, but at least the Red Bull is wearing off – the seizures are coming less frequently now.  I still live in fear of the fucking calf cramps that are only an awkward movement away.

Couple of other things – kudos to the lady who set the craps record at the Borgata.  But where the hell was she when I needed her?  Have to imagine if she rolled that many times that the aggressive bettors took down somewhere in the neighb of $200k – $300k.  Not bad for four hours.  Also, I have to give props to the Greyhound ride that we had to resort to last night.  Granted, waiting for the bus at the AC train stati0n is one of the least desirable fates in the world (unless you are a traveling circus recruiter), but the ride itself clocked in at two hours and fifteen minutes.  That’s faster than the fucking “train service” that inexplicably does not run on Mondays (but will be happy to drop you off at 2:00 AM Monday morn just in case you are looking to spend 4-5 days in beautiful Atlantic City).  The bed-n-meth bender places there are divine.

Anyhoo, back to my reassessment.  As I alluded to yesterday, I really needed to stop and take a look at where my life was headed.  I’m using past tense here because I did stop, I did take a look and I did reevaluate my plan.  As you might recall from my first real post, one in which I didn’t even know how to post a picture (semi) properly, I vocalized my seemingly lofty long-term plan to use this website as a springboard to full-time punditry.  Preferably at VH1, the El Dorado for undertalented comics/writers/models with a snarky take on pop cultural events.

But was I selling myself short with such a goal?  I, someone who had achieved a measure of average-to-below-averageness in a wide range of career paths?  Someone who had lapped at the golden trough of The Street (only to later become lodged under The Street’s urinal cake)?  And did punditry even offer a significantly greater long-term outlook than my other failed efforts?  For every Aisha Tyler, there’s probably ten Patrice O’Neals.  Who’s Patrice O’Neal?  He’s the dude who looks like former Knick and Hornet Larry Johnson, and who parlayed his VH1 gigs into a slot as one of the factory guys on The Office.  Where’s he at now?  Looks like he got some voice work on Emmy candidate Assy McGee, but fame/fate’s fickle hands bestowed all Office factory goodness on Craig Robinson.  Where’s Michael Ian Black these days?  Shooting web videos and guesting on Reaper?  I’m not sure that’s a better place in the world than anonymous internet hack/Yellow Tail connoisseur.  (And, by the way, “connoisseur” is pretty tricky to spell, even for someone who won his school’s spelling bee in fifth grade.  But let’s not discuss how the Tulsa citywide-bee went – damn you “obscured”!  You should have two r’s!)

I’ve decided I need to pursue something that provides signficant subsistence opportunities at all points in the economic cycle.  An occupation where I can leverage my pop culture knowledge and the writing skills I’m honing on this very website.  The chance to work with a diverse mix of forward-thinking intellectuals from across the social strata.  A career path that allows for both financial and spiritual growth – not just mad scrilla with no emotional or philanthropic fulfillment.  There’s really only one job I can think of that captures all these elements and would likely allow me to continue spending 15-16 hours a day sitting on my couch.  I am going to become a featured rapper.

ianblack patrice-oneal2



         From Pundits to Pundidn’ts?






If you are reading this blog, there’s a pretty good chance you are white, so you may be unfamiliar with this career choice.  Let me translate into something more digestible for those of you in this category: let’s say you are a contractor building a house: setting the foundation, putting up the frame…actually I don’t know much housing lingo, so you’re the guy who turns the bricks, concrete, lumber, etc into a fucking house.  You do everything but put up the mailbox, you have a specialist who does that.  The mailbox guy is like the guest rapper – he does like 0.2% of the work but gets outsized credit if the mailbox is extremely noteworthy, taking the house to a whole new level.  Shit, that might’ve been a weak metaphor or whatever.  Let’s say you’re a gigolo (or a prostitute for the three female readers of this blog: hi Mom!), you take some shriveled octogenarian out to a nice dinner, maybe some dancing (you’re no common whore), set the stage and everything.  You start sexing it up real good with the old bag, even holding in your vomit until just before the climactic/possible cardiac event.  Then someone steps in to finish the job.  See – that’s also the guest rapper there, the guy who finishes the deal.  Metaphorically, he will get significant credit for a job well done and little blame for a shitty job.  Doesn’t have to do as much dirty work, but still gets paid.   Is the tableau complete now for all my white readers?

There’s always a market for guest rappers – some songs might have seven or eight “featured” artists on each song.  I believe Lil Wayne alone has been featured on something like 4700 songs.  And you don’t have to do much as the “main” rapper has okayed the beat, chorus, pentameter and all those other musical things (so I’m not a contractor and know little about music, why do you think I’m writing this stuff instead of being constructive in some way?)  But, importantly, the featured rappers apparently get to write their own lyrics – that’s fucking sweet!  Hopefully I’ll be able to start with something with a pop vibe, where my ghetto sound will give it a little crossover appeal.  (My voice sounds very similar to the crack whores on The Wire, so I know my style is gonna be legit)  And I know most of the latest slang, since I listen to a lot of Cameo, Boogie Boys and UTFO.  Word.  Fingers crossed that I can get something done with Lady Gaga, on her next socially-conscious album.  I’m already pondering what rhymes with “rain forest.”  I’m thinking “Al Gore-fest,” since that dovetails pretty nicely with the whole global warming sitch.  (That’s slang for “situation”)

So I will still be working hard at this blog; as occasional featured rapper Eminem has proven, timely, satirical jabs at pop culture targets is all the rage in the rap world.  Watch out Speidi, I’m just waiting to spit some hot fire your direction.  Plus, in this bizarro world of rap, there really aren’t any featured rappers who are 40+ year old white guys with MBAs, so I think I will have a certain corner of the market locked up from the onset.  Like, if Fat Joe has a track about Black-Scholes, I will be a logical candidate to throw down some lyricism (“For those with a mathematical persuasion, it starts with a partial differential equation”).  I can go all day.  Let me (for like the eighth time) take us out with the greatest featured rapper debut in history, one that changed the annals of hip-hop, gin consumption and adding -izzle to every word, forever.