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Remote Control King

Tales Of Tomorrow: The Inside Story of TV's 1st Sci-Fi Anthology

The one about the little kid with supernatural powers. The shopkeeper who can magically materialize exactly what a customer needs. The episode with an invisible creature attacking people in the jungle. The show where an ...

At least a Netflix binger branches out

Dear Hipster: In terms of addictive behaviors, is it worse to binge-watch a Netflix show that you don’t even like, or to re-watch old shows and movies that you do like, but that you’ve seen ...

How 3D TV works

Heymatt: I’ve gotten to wondering, how does 3D TV work? I’ve never seen it, but I’m having a hard time figuring out how it would work. — Bob S., Tierrasanta Bob S. has been bathing ...

Ponzi Pawns

All financial markets are Ponzi schemes set up to take money from the unwitting and give it to insiders. All numbers concerning stocks are manipulated to give rich people more money; they’re lies. So, you’ve ...

February 4, 2009
Ollie's Giant Robot Army

This miserable “era of peace” has nearly bankrupted my giant robot army before I’ve even had the chance to get any of them out the door. I’m sittin’ on 45 giant robots in a National ...

January 28, 2009
Z Outbreak

Zombie hunting used to be grueling business. I never thought I’d be a zombie hunter, but then again, I’m typing this on a square of light that sits in my lap. If you’d asked me ...

January 21, 2009
Some Should Die

More people should die. Our only problem as a society is that we lack the moral resolve to let it happen. We have no distinguishable line to draw — everyone on this side we will ...

January 14, 2009
That's the Holiday Spirit!

Thankfully, mercifully, wonderfully, I rejoice that the holidays are over. This year I was called everything from a “lamer” to a “scrooge” because I don’t enjoy the time from Halloween to New Year’s Eve. Well, ...

January 7, 2009
This Just Sounds Dirty

Halley’s Comet appeared when I was nine. It came late at night. I was watching TV on the couch, dozing. There was a big fuss about it; every commercial break, a news anchor would tell ...

December 30, 2008
Rain Made a Clown of Me

Rain made a clown out of me. Not one of those funny clowns, if there ever was such a thing, but rather a sad-faced, hobo clown who forever looks as if his coffee is cold, ...

December 23, 2008
Shrek You!

A nation doesn’t leap off of a cliff and fall into chaos; it slides over the course of months. In 2001, Argentina started that slide. By 2002, the price of food had rocketed 200 times ...

December 17, 2008
Hang in There, Baby

People have called me a “hater” because I’m quick to give my opinion on most everything and usually within my stated opinion the word “crap” pops up. If you ask me, “What did you think ...

December 10, 2008
I Am Genghis Khan

I am Genghis Khan. Bill Bryson, in his book A Short History of Nearly Everything, explains how lineage works by starting out: “If your two parents hadn’t bonded just when they did — possibly to ...

December 3, 2008
Rubber Duck and Ceramic Cat on the Lam

Rocky, my rubber duck, is tunneling out of the bathroom. I know he’s tunneling because upon morning muster and inspection he’s been congenial and respectful, which is unfamiliar behavior for him. At night inspection, he’s ...

November 25, 2008
Lost in Time

Sweet merciful crap! Through means I’d rather not discuss, I’ve managed to transport myself back to the Mesozoic period. The dishwasher and eight-track cassette player I used as a time vehicle is now broken. Even ...

November 19, 2008
Ollie's Not a Huge Dork Anymore...Is He?

My roommate wandered in while I was watching a movie on TV. We’re still settling into our new place and she was retrieving and placing things in what she determined were their new proper spots. ...

November 12, 2008
The Losers' Future

We’ve focused so exclusively on the election that I’m unsure I’ll know what to do with myself when it’s over. I write this two days before The Tuesday, the incredibly important Tuesday, the Tuesday two ...

November 5, 2008
Movin' On Up

It sat there, not ominous or inimical, but mysterious. The TV. I’ve moved in with a roommate to save some money this year and to shed my old barrio. My roommate has a TV big ...

October 29, 2008
Ollie 2012!

George W. Bush is an American hero, and let me tell you why: because if he can make it, anyone can. All it takes is money. Look at him. That stiff Porky Pig impression every ...

October 22, 2008
What to Watch During an Economic Meltdown!

Like a donkey on a tilt-a-whirl, I have no business being in a kitchen. With that in mind, I’m going to share some of my cost-cutting-cooking and home-organizing tips. First, what you want to do ...

October 15, 2008
The Palin Analogies

Waiting for Sarah Palin’s appearance at the vice-presidential debates was like waiting for one of those predator crab things to latch onto my face and lay eggs in my mouth. Something horrible was on its ...

October 8, 2008
The Creepy Factor

Good lord, I need to get out of this slum. While watching TV the other night, a knock came at my screen door. “Does José live here?” the man said, pointing down to indicate he ...

October 1, 2008
The Narcoleptic Dingo

As my superhero alter ego, Narcoleptic Dingo, I plan to attack Washington and Wall Street. Sure, sure, the trio of supervillains, Fedsy McMoneychanger, the Tax Reaper, and Bendover Herecomesthe-porkbarrelspending Monster will try to confuse me ...

September 24, 2008
Moron Proves Theory of Natural Selection

Since one of my ex-girlfriend’s ideas of the most fun one could have was to sprinkle red wine about my bedroom floor, I decided I needed to rent a carpet cleaner and turn my burgundy ...

September 17, 2008
John's Jowls

Herpes simplex A through Q saw fit to land on my face and create a tiny ecosystem of interconnecting blisters and communities. I’m going to give it to John McCain. (I already gave it to ...

September 10, 2008
Celebrity Gossip Edition

I busted my damn foot. I was in ninja school; we were practicing that throw-the-egg-full-of-explosive-powder-down-and-disappear thing when the new guy in the purple sweats disappeared in the wrong direction and stomped my foot. “WAAAAA!” I ...

September 3, 2008
Obama and Ollie

Obama picked me to be vice president! And I picked Kermit the Frog to serve as my vice vice president, along with undersecretary Michael Phelps. Our first order of business will be to stage Kermit’s ...

August 27, 2008
Olympic Issues

Here I sit, hunched over my pad of yellow stickies and pile of inconsequential receipts, my crayon poised in shaking fingers, and I’m livid. I write this to you in Crayola “Brick” on the reverse ...

August 20, 2008
Donde esta el Wampeer?

Nobody's ever asked the question "What if a vampire and a zombie were trapped together in a sealed room?" Until now. You see, here at stately Underpants Manor we're gigglingly wealthy, curious, and a little ...

August 13, 2008
Ollie Ewok

I look like the most reviled creature on Earth, and I’ll tell you what it is: an Ewok. If you don’t hate Ewoks, you’re not paying attention. And don’t give me that “you said ‘the ...

August 6, 2008
The Holiday Edition

Here at Tablecloth Cape Studios we strive to stay ahead of the competition. While other news outlets blather on about sunscreen, we’re going to stuff stale bread up a turkey’s chute and call it the ...

July 30, 2008
John Holmes Mysteries

The two most embarrassing elements of my existence are (1) I enjoy girl folk music, and (2) I occasionally wake up, still drunk from the night before, on the bedroom floors of complete strangers, reeking ...

July 23, 2008
Al-Qaeda built my coffeemaker

Its internal workings comprise several kludgy elements. Inside it are: the wiring of a movie time bomb that forces my coffeemaker to count down from ten seconds over the span of half an hour, a ...

July 16, 2008
Go Away, History!

“Que mas?” the girl said, swishing her black hair over her ear. "Que mas?" She turned from me, held her arms above her head, and rocked her hips. She pulled her hair up off her ...

July 9, 2008
Stop! Drop! And Roll!

All through elementary school, my classmates and I were treated to instructions, both live and on VHS tape, detailing what we should do if we caught on fire. That’s right, kids. Say it with me: ...

July 2, 2008
Goodbye, Ol' Girl

Like an elderly pet, my television shows signs of physical and mental decline. And not one of those throwaway pets like a county-fair goldfish; no, my TV is a loyal Weimaraner, so noble. Now she’s ...

June 25, 2008
Super Why?

The city is a procrustean bed for man’s wildness. His heart and eyes disfavor straight line and timidity. Children know this. Set a child down on grass, and he’ll strip his shirt off, pick a ...

June 18, 2008
Dance, Monkey Boy, Dance!

Kim Cattrall is a vampire. By night, Kim Cattrall feeds on Hooters girls innocently making out with each other in the parking lot. I haven’t looked up her Wikipedia entry to verify this fact, but ...

June 11, 2008
Chimp People

Some people look like chimpanzees, and that’s the truth of it. I’m not being mean or hurtful. You’ve seen that person who looks like a chimpanzee. And you’ve caught yourself thinking of that person in ...

June 4, 2008
A Letter to My Neighbors

Dear Poor People Who Live Next Door to Me, I am dreadfully sorry to bother you, but could you be a little quieter, please. Propping up on your front porch 19 screaming babies, each with ...

May 28, 2008
Seinfeld Meets Garfield

Conversation between Garfield and Seinfeld Seinfeld: Hey there, Garfield. Looks like you’re having a tough weekend. Didn’t know you liked the sauce so much. Garfield: You couldn’t put that together? I love lasagna, kicking a ...

May 21, 2008
The Drunken Clowns of Vegas

If you’re a complete debauchery amateur, Vegas is racy. Other than that it’s about as provocative as birthday cake. Considering my 20s, gambling, booze, drugs, and women are a Monday-morning stretch and yawn. The one ...

The Underpants Tablecloth-Caped Avenger

Hold on to your butts, kids! Here comes another installment of...The Underpants Tablecloth-Caped Avenger! Disguised as my nebbish alter ego, Johan Awesome, I patrolled an enclave of Kensington. Ol’ Black Betty, the Six-Speed Bicycle of ...

May 7, 2008
An Open Letter to American Babies

An Open Letter to All American Babies:You were born in the United States. You are a human being, so therefore you have the right to walk around; you have the right to move around without ...

April 30, 2008
Where the Hell's My Hot Sauce?

The question was, Where the hell is my hot sauce? As with so many little mysteries in my life, the answer is, I’m retarded. Situated neatly on my coffee table was a tray of grocery-store ...

April 23, 2008
Hair Lip

— May 1, 2000 Not only was I late for work, but my car’s booster engine fouled up. It didn’t explode or anything, it streamed a thin trail of smoke and rattled. So the automatic ...

April 16, 2008
Quick, Who's My Favorite Ninja Turtle?

Bleakness rent my spirit. For days I pinched the bridge of my nose and squinted. I pushed at the inside corner of my eyes until they bulged and I was nearly blind. Indecision can be ...

April 9, 2008
The Statistics Issue

Crowded on the shelf and partially hidden by other books, the bright yellow spine of the stupidest book ever glared out to me, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Professional Wrestling. I pushed the Grishams and ...

April 2, 2008
Almost a Boy Scout

For a long time, the only development project in my neighborhood belonged to a swarm of wasps building a papery hive in the corner of an abandoned storefront. They were the only things fighting entropy ...

March 26, 2008
America's Sweatiest Fatties

This is true. I know my reputation for oddball fiction and addled fantasy damages my credibility, but I swear, this is true. A spider and I encountered each other in an unpleasant way. Last week, ...

March 19, 2008
Queen of the Southern Mines

My dad still lives in our hometown of Sonora. Folks call the area different things, depending on what they want to sell you. It’s “God’s Country” if the license-plate frames on the new cars at ...

March 12, 2008
How the Nightly News Should Be

How the Nightly News Should Be: Today, billions of people survived. Of our species, less than one percent was killed, raped, or burglarized. So, don’t freak out and worry about a bunch of terrifying stuff ...

March 5, 2008

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