Friday, September 29, 2006

A Trivial Diversion

Things have been a little intermittent and variable around here lately. Some of this is because I've been doing some freelance writing for

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...which, by the way, was created by my old Robotski cohort, Jacob. So that's been taking up some of my extra time. Still, I'll keep talking to you all when I can grab a minute.

By the way, thanks to The Apiary for including the latest episode of Captains in Space in this week's New Video Wednesday.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Recycling Center: The Return of the Comics

By popular demand (seriously!) here's another one of my old comics from More can be seen here.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Of Haircuts and Music Videos

So I was checking out my site statistics yesterday, and I discovered that one of the searches that led someone to my blog was "how to get paula deen's haircut."

Really? Really?

Also, if yesterday's new episode of Captains in Space wasn't enough for you, check out this video that the captains made a while back for a friend's birthday. I had nothing to do with it, but it gives me a chuckle, so I thought I'd pass it along to you. Because that's what friends do.

They share.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Captains in Space: Episode Five, "Proms Away," ONLINE!

Well, we took the summer off, and I'm sure it was a difficult wait for all of you, but our long national nightmare is over. Episode Five: Proms Away is online and ready to watch.

I wrote this episode, and it stars the usual gang of Federico Hatoum, Adam Walden, and Vedette Lim as Frankie. Oh, and who's that guest starring? Why, it's me! Yes, watch my star turn as "Robo-Dan" and finally fulfill your dream of seeing my doughy face covered in silver make-up. What does Captain Fed have to say about my performance?
It guest stars Captains scribe Dan McCoy in a role that will surely redefine the way we all see him. Remember when Harrison Ford played a bad guy in "What Lies Beneath", how everyone was, like, "Wow, that's really a different kind of role for him"? This will be similar.
Check out the site to view/read about the episode, or just download it directly, here.

If you have a video iPod, you can subscribe to Captains in Space on iTunes: search for "captains in space" and click the subscribe button, or use this link.

Or, if you're lazy and don't mind a lower-resolution picture you can just view the episode via YouTube:

Friday, September 22, 2006

Coming Soon...

(A Sketch Show)

More details pending...

Of Stabbings and Vicious Lies

As you may have heard, my guest spot at Video Gaga on Wednesday ended with my brutal stabbing at the hands of one John Kingman, so-called "co-producer" of Gaga, and a former friend.

I'd like to thank all of you for the cards and letters at this time of crisis, and assure you that I am recovering well, and that the doctors beleive I will retain the use of nearly 20% of my stomach (although spicy buffalo wings are now out! Ouch!).

At any rate, Mr. Kingman has posted a self-justifying "explaination" for his senseless attack, on his blog. (What kind of prison allows inmates blogging privileges, anyway?) I encourage you to read it only to gain insight into a sick mind.

Also, I believe his photos to be doctored. I have never met either Margaret Thatcher or Ann Coulter, and I will not stand for such character assasination. The women in the photo with me were originally Lizzie Borden and Countess Elizabeth Bathory.

Primetime Kalan TOMORROW!

This Saturday brings with it an all-new edition of The Primetime Kalan, New York's most popular talk/ variety program that's hosted by Elliott Kalan.

Tomorrow's show will be extra-special, because (aside from the usual hi-jinks from Elliott, Erik, and myself) our special guest will be Demetri Martin-- currently best-known for his "Trendspotting" segments on The Daily Show. You can see one such segment here, via Comedy Central's site. Or, for those who prefer hearing with their ears to seeing with their eyes, you can listen to Demetri on NPR.

Aside from the show's Demetriosity, what else is there to recommend it? How about a visit from sexpert Catherine Wing? Everything's better with "sex" as a prefix. Not enough? What if we throw in a video from Elliott and his "Hypocrites" partner Brock Mahan? More? Okay, you've twisted my arm. If you come to the show, you'll also get a free ticket to watch the post-apocalyptic action film Bronx Warriors, along with the wisecracking Kalanites, as part of our inaugural Bad Movie Night.

Sound good? Okay, I'll see you there.

Saturday, Sept. 23rd, 8:30pm
@ Jimmy's No. 43
43 East 7th Street

(between 2nd and 3rd avenue)
Manhattan, NY
Tix: only $5!

Oh, and while we're talking about Elliott, go on over and read his most recent column for Metro. It's the free newspaper real New Yorkers read, during that period between when a real homeless person hands it to them, and they get off the subway and toss it in a real New York trash can! For making our subway ride more palatable, we salute you, Metro!

Recycling Center: Comic Edition Strikes Back

Here's another of my old comics from See more here.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Recycling Center: Comic Edition

Hey folks. I'm busy with a lot of other things this week, but I want to keep the site interesting, so here's a single panel comic I did for, where you can find more of my comics.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

See Me in Video Gaga Tonight!

As mentioned previously, I will be reuniting with my old SSIOWY cohort, Ms. Sara Schaefer herself, for a cameo appearance in her new show Video Gaga. I will be on hand to deliver the week's music news. Will hi-jinks ensue? You'll have to come to find out.

Video Gaga
Wednesday, September 20, 9:30
Funny music videos by Matt Evans, Ann Carr, Vince Sabatini, and more!
Musical Guest: The Undisputed Heavyweights
Tickets $5
Reserve tickets here or call 212-366-9176
Upright Citizen's Brigade Theatre
307 W. 26th Street, btw 8th & 9th

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

In Which I Object to the Marketing of Certain Distasteful Items

Apparently, the urinal in our office is a "Flushboy" brand toilet fixture. I am a firm believer that urinals should not be given anthropomorphic nicknames. Here are some other products that I would appreciate people not inventing:
  • Plungerette
  • Ipecacadet
  • Bedpanymph
  • Diaphramaster
  • Colonoscopuppy
  • Rape Whistler's Mother

Monday, September 18, 2006

See Me in Video Gaga This Wednesday

Hey folks-- so I'll be making some sort of appearance at this week's Video Gaga at the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theater. I'm not entirely sure what I'll be doing (preparation! yeah!), but the show will reunite me with my former fake boss (and current AOL music correspondent) Sara Schaefer. It's like a Sara Schaefer is Obsessed With You reunion... except Amanda and Kara Lee won't be there... or Patrick... oh, and the concept of the whole show is completely different. On second thought, it's more like when Susanne Pleshette showed up on Newhart.

And, yes, in this scenerio, I'm Susanne Pleshette. How can you pass that up?


Video Gaga
Musical Guest: The Undisputed Heavyweights
Wed., September 20, 9:30 pm
@ The Upright Citizen's Brigade Theater
307 West 26th Street, Manhattan
Tix: $5

Primetime Kalan, This Saturday! Plus, Unrelated Miscellany!

Elliott just can't stop shilling for The Primetime Kalan, and I just can't stop posting his shills!


Hello, Kalan fans!
So apparently, this saturday is Rosh Hashanah, and apparently by scheduling my next episode of the ever-entertaning PRIMETIME KALAN on that day I've incurred the wrath of the UJA and the League of Orthodox Rabbis. But what better way is there to ring in the Jewish new year than a hilarious night of Kalan-related antics?
Exactly. And with stand-up comedy megasuperultrastar Demetri Martin and sexpert Catherine Wing in tow, it's the talk show equivalent of having your name written in the Book of Life!
Also, I think God's coming, so He probably won't get mad if you show up, too.
Saturday, Sept. 23rd, 8:30pm
43 East 7th Street (between 3rd and 2nd Ave.)
Tix: $5


Also, thanks to Fuse#8 and Oz and Ends for picking up my Wizard of Oz DVD Digest piece. Sorry that I misidentified L. Frank Baum as Frank L. Baum. If I'm gonna have children's literature people reading my site, I'm going to have to step up my research. Meanwhile, all you children's lit writers can help me out by not having a first name for your middle name. Thanks.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

DVD DIGEST: Herbie: Fully Loaded

Today’s DVDs are packed to the gills with commentaries and production information, but who other than unemployed Film Comment subscribers have the time to wade through all that crap? Instead, let us do it for you. We’ll check out a new release, listen to all the commentaries (even the one that’s just the gaffers, insect wranglers, and stunt butts), view the documentaries, and boil the information down to only the most interesting tidbits.

This week’s DVD release: Herbie: Fully Loaded

Commentary Nuggets:
  • The car was the hardest role to cast. When the casting director finally found one “with a mind of its own,” everyone was initally excited. However, after Brecken Myer was slaughtered in a seatbelt accident, it became clear that the car was possessed by a demonic force, and the production was only saved when a couple of 1950’s teens managed to crush it with a forklift.
  • Special effects wizards used a computer to simultaneously shrink Lindsay Lohan’s breast size and the audience for the film.
  • “Herbie” shared many racy stories spanning the length of his Hollywood career, including one about a three-way with Dean Martin and Don Knotts, on the set of 1977’s Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo.
  • Director Angela Robinson fell in love with the project because she felt it was an inspiration to other young women who might be struggling with the issues of entering the Daytona 500 and owning a magical car.
  • In an inspiring display of devotion to her craft, Lindsay Lohan spent much of the shoot “fully loaded” herself.
  • Michael Keaton is just happy to be in any movie where he’s not playing a living snowman.
Deleted Scenes:
  • An entire Antarctic subplot was cut from the film. It was later released as the documentary March of the Penguins.
  • Matt Dillon’s character originally had a hobby: taking pictures of crash victims, digitally manipulating the images so the survivors appeared to be engaged in deviant sexual acts, and posting the pictures online. All scenes devoted to this hobby were cut, as it was thought to make his character seem “too unsympathetic.”
Hidden “Easter Egg”:
  • Click on Herbie’s headlamps in the main menu, and see a picture of Lindsay Lohan back when she was a cute, shapely, redheaded young actress, and not a too-much-sunless-suntan-wearing, anorexic, bleach-blonde young cokehead. Then cry.

Recycling Center

Here's something I wrote for a publication that died before this was published. Ah, the glamorous life of a writer! Unless the search engines have steered me wrong (and it's quite possible they have), I don't think I've posted it here before. Enjoy.


Today’s DVDs are often packed to the gills with commentaries and production information, but who other than unemployed Film Comment subscribers have the time to wade through all that crap? Instead, save your time, and let us do it for you. We’ll check out a new release, listen to all the commentaries (even the one that’s just the gaffers, insect wranglers, and stunt butts), view the documentaries, and boil the information down to only the most interesting tidbits.

This week’s DVD release: The Wizard of Oz: 3-Disc Collector’s Edition

Commentary Nuggets:
  • The Flying Monkey effects were created by taking real monkeys, and forcing them to swallow whole snow owls.
  • Only one of the Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow, and Tin Man is actually gay. See if you can guess which one!
  • If you watch carefully, you’ll notice this continuity gaffe: at different times during the movie, Dorothy’s hair appears to be three different lengths. This is because Judy Garland is a witch, and was born without a soul.
  • The "tornado" was actually a big stocking, photographed in front of miniatures of a Kansas farm. Does that turn you on?
  • Although “The Wizard of Oz” synchs up beautifully with Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon,” it works even better with Paul McCartney’s “Flaming Pie.” However, no-one has ever discovered this, because no-one has ever listened to an entire post-Beatles Paul McCartney album.
  • Frank L. Baum’s original book was an allegory of the 1890’s switch to the gold standard, although, surprisingly, his book “William Jennings Bryan the Fat Pink Dragon” was meant to be read straight.
  • There are rumors that one of the Munchkins hung himself, and can be seen at the beginning of the “We’re Off to See the Wizard” sequence, dangling from a tree. This is an urban legend. What you are actually seeing is INXS frontman Michael Hutchence, who, in addition to being into autoerotic asphyxiation, invented time travel. His was a beautiful mind, and its loss is bitterly felt.
  • Peter Bogdonovich contributes a commentary, because he’ll comment on any damn thing.

Deleted Scenes:
  • The alternate ending where Dorothy stayed in Oz rather than returning to dusbowl Kansas—the studio feared that it would make children unsatisfied with their hard life of bitter struggle, and teach them that it’s okay to reach for their dreams.
  • Home movies of the famous lost “Jitterbug” dance sequence, in which alcohol withdrawal gave Judy Garland such fierce jitters that it seemed like she was dancing
  • The scene at the end where Mrs. Gulch returns to reclaim Toto (who earlier escaped from her bicycle basket), and then takes him to the vet to be put to sleep, was cut because it “seemed to end the movie on a down note.”

Hidden “Easter Egg”:
  • If you type S.U.R.R.E.N.D.E.R. D.O.R.O.T.H.Y. into your DVD player, nothing will happen, you pervert.

New Sketch Show Coming in October

I don't have all the details to pass along to you kids yet, but keep an eye on this space. I've been working on a new Halloween-themed sketch show with some friends, and it's finally got a venue (the Sage Theater), some dates (October 19, 26, 27, and 29) and a name (Zombira's Scaretaculous Halloween Horrortacular).

So if you like Halloween, comedy, Halloween-themed comedy, or comedy-themed Halloween, mark your calendars. More to come...

Creepy lips-sewn-together-baby would tell you to attend, except for... well, you know.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

New Primetime Kalan, Coming Saturday, September 23!

I'll let Elliott do the shilling for me...

Hello Kalan fans!

This is to officially alert, announce, forebode, and warn you that next saturday, September 23rd, at 8:30pm sees another amazing new episode of your favorite live talk show, THE PRIMETIME KALAN.

This kind of thing only happens once a month, so we're pulling out a lot of stops. How many stops are we pulling out? ALL OF THEM! We are literally pulling ALL OF THE STOPS OUT!

How else would we have room for The Man Who Sees Sideways himself, megatalent comedian Demetri Martin?! And not only that, but our favorite local sexpert Catherine Wing!

Demetri displays the hoodie and comedy stare that have earned him the nickname "The Muscles from Brussels."

Those great stars PLUS the famous jokes and bits that have led to the nonstop Kalaning of America? The only excuse for missing this is if you are dead or busy.

Saturday, Sept. 23rd, 8:30pm
@ Jimmy's No. 43
43 East 7th Street

(between 2nd and 3rd avenue)
Manhattan, NY
Tix: only $5!

In Which I Defend My Manner of Venting Frustration Upon the World at Large

Recently, I’ve been fielding a lot of complaints about the way I insult people. Not the fact that I insult them, mind you, but the manner in which I do it. Apparently people believe my put-downs to be too “on the nose.” For instance: this morning, on the elevator, the odor wafting from a particularly pungent co-worker assaulted my senses. I yelled, “Hey, guy who smells like he does not wash quite as much as would be expected in polite society! Take a bath!” I felt I’d let loose with a particularly appropriate “zinger,” but the general opinion around the office failed to bear me out.

Or when I was nearly clipped by a bicycle messenger, and I rejoined, “Hey guy who doesn’t think that the laws of traffic don’t apply to him because he’s in a bicycle and not a car, so he runs a red light, even though, in fact, the same rules of the road apply to cyclists and motorists! Watch where you’re going!” My pleasure at having told him off was only slightly diminished by his having been approximately a mile away by the time I finished my sentence.

What’s wrong with being on the nose? Should I subtly come at my insults via oblique angles? Should I tell a woman with an annoying voice that hers is the song that the angels sing when they accidentally chew some aluminum foil? It might be more artistically satisfying. But does the message read?

In fact, I’d argue that the beauty of my insults is in their specificity. When I call someone “man who is either too stupid to realize that there are other people trying to get into the subway car, or is so disinterested in the well-being of those around him that he refuses to move away from the door, or else is some sort of sociopath,” doesn’t that give that person a clearer idea of how, exactly, he has displeased me, than “asshat” would? I’m just asking.

Certainly, if you were to insult me, I’d ask you to forgo such vulgarities, in favor of tailored insults, such as, “guy who takes a half-baked premise and then tries to pummel it into the shape of a humorous web post, but fails almost completely,” or “guy who doesn’t know how to write an end for things.”

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

In Which I Dispel Pernicious Rumors Regarding My Mortality

I must admit to being completely baffled by the recent outpouring of cards and letters, lamenting my passing. In an attempt to put these rumors to rest, let me assure you of this-- the reports of my death by stingray have been greatly exaggerated.

I can only assume, America, that you have somehow gotten me confused with the beloved television host and wildlife enthusiast, Steve "Crocodile Hunter" Irwin, and his recent tragic demise. We all mourn this loss. However, while in the throes of grief, it is important to not allow such emotions to cloud the mind. I am not a hyperactive Australian adventurer. I am a sardonic Brooklyn writer/ performer. Also, I rarely wear shorts.

Thus, while I appreciate the several large donations made to wildlife preservation organizations in my name, I simply do not understand why such donations have been made. Honestly, as a man with significant student loan and credit debt, I would prefer that, should you wish to make a Dan McCoy-related contribution it be sent directly to me, in the form of large checks made out to cash.

Perhaps there has been a misprint in some widely-read obituary column, but even so, people-- please use your heads. I am a land-based mammal living in a northern state. Stingrays are tropical marine creatures. How plausible does my death sound now? Huh? Don't you feel silly?

In fact, I've compiled a short list, detailing the incidents in my life that come closest to a stingray encounter.
1990 - Stung by bee in foot (unconfirmed - bee unseen)

2001 - Present - Lived in NYC, city with largest per capita concentration of pizzerias with "Ray" in the name

2005 - Felt slightly "stung" by the length of the film Ray starring Jamie Foxx.

That's it! Hardly an extensive list!

So in conclusion, I'd just like to say, please stop sending cards and letters, as I'm totally... AAAGH! I'M BEING EATEN BY A BEAR!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

In Which I Expound Upon My Sure-Fire Get-Rich Scheme, With Regards to the Prevailing Entertainment Mode of the Day

I don't watch American Idol, but its saturation into the national consciousness is such that I'm aware that exiled singers receive a montage set to that "so you had a bad day" song. Similarly, So You Think You Can Dance (which I have seen a bit of, thanks to my wife*) sends off half their contestants to a song titled "End of the Road."

Therefore, I plan to support myself by writing a hit song to be used in reality show eliminations. Producers please take note. Some sample titles:

"So You've Had a Day That Ended With You Being Eliminated From Some Sort of Talent Competition"

"Not Good Enough to Be America's Sweetheart/ Nor Bad Enough to Be its Joke"

"Ultimately, You Were Sub-Par"

"The Only Thing Worse Than Being on a Reality Show (Is Not Being on a Reality Show)"

"Hello Third Lead in a Teen-Targeted Romantic Comedy!"

"This Was, Quite Literally, the High Point of Your Life. Hope You Enjoyed it."

"Get the Fuck Out of Here!"

*in this (and only this) instance, "wife" actually does mean "wife" and not "me snuggled up in a terry-cloth robe, sipping an extra-chocolatey mudslide and softly crying."

Metapost: New Addition to Sidebar

Notice anything different in the sidebar? No. Why would you? Who in their right mind would pay enough attention to something like that?

I'll put you out of your misery-- I've added an "Upcoming Shows" section. When I started this site, the only thing I posted was information about upcoming shows (or places you could read my material, or news, etc.). I wanted it to be a place people could go, if they were curious about what I had going on, so that I wouldn't constantly be irritating everyone via email plugs. What I didn't want it to be was another blog, cluttering up the Internets with unfocused musings or navel-gazing.

However, you may have noticed (again, why would you?) that I've recently loosened things up, and started posting a wider variety of comedy-related things, in the interest of making things around here less killingly boring. I think that's a good thing; but, as a friend pointed out this weekend, it does mean that the shows-- this site's original reason to be-- have gotten a little lost in the shuffle.

So: I'll still post full information about shows in the main body of the site, as information or occasion warrants, but now the key info about upcoming shows will always be only a glance away.

Wow, I sure used a lot of words to say "upcoming shows will now be listed in the sidebar." Writing is editing, my ass.

Minor Victory Monday:The Return!

Once again, I was one of this week's finalists in Daniel Radosh's excellent New Yorker Anti-Caption Contest.