Archive for January, 2007

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The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal Guest Appearance on Episode 21 is up! Click on the link RIGHT NOW!

January 31, 2007

     The title of this post says it all.  Again, if you enjoy my rants, you do not want to miss this show.  Hal and I were completely off the reservation on this show and if you follow the link, episode 21 will start playing straightaway.  The episode runs 112 minutes or so and Hal put me on last, (‘I like to save the best for last, he told me’).  I love the site, I love the show, and I plan on being back on the show repeatedly until one of us gets lynched.  Click on over to:

 http://www.powunclehal.blogspot.com/

      Make sure to check the sidebar on Hal’s site to call in and leave comments, too.  ALL phone calls and comments are aired directly on the show, so show some love!

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Monday Update: Week 11 On Stands, Possible Trafford Switch at the 11th Hour

January 29, 2007

     First, down to Night Life Magazine business.  The new issue’s out today with a scathing, scathing (did I mention that the article was scathing?) commentary on Buffalo roads and how horrendous they are (‘Morning Traffic Retort’)  in this week’s Big Words I Know By Heart print column.  I’m making this February my official ‘Driving Sucks’ month and rounding out the rest of the month in Night Life with a classic, fan favorite that’s been split up into two parts (‘Cool Hand Highway Superintendant’) and I may or may not throw a Valentine’s piece or another driving piece in for the fourth week.  People who have read my work for some time know that I always shine when it comes to writing about driving, dentists and smoking.  They are three themes that I always seem to circle back to because they constantly aggravate me.  And if you missed ‘Bizarro Acrophobia’ last week, you’re just going to have to wait until next year to read it in ‘Slapstick & Superego’, as I won’t be reprinting it here.  I only reprint the Big Word columns that I wrote specifically for the print column with a local flavor, so sorry for that. 

     One of the submitters to the Just Buffalo anthology that Alycia Ripley and myself are compiling let me know that the Buffalo News ran our call for submissions in the Sunday paper in the Arts section, so that’s getting us some great exposure for the project.  If you haven’t read the call for submissions and you’d like to submit, just scroll down until you find the ‘Call For Submissions’ entry.  This project is starting to gain a lot of momentum and the submission period only runs for another five months, so get cracking if you want to make the cut!

     And as far as ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ goes, I may be switching publishers.  Trafford has made my life a living hell for the past week and they’re telling me that they may or may not have the book out on time.  This is a serious problem that rests squarely on their shoulders, as one of the primary conditions of my signing with them was that they have the book ready for sale by April 1st.  Now they are going back on the agreement and telling me that they’re not sure if they can do it, so I’ve enlisted some legal counsel as well as the advice of Author House, a publisher I dealt with for ‘First Person, Last Straw’ who got the job done in a timely and cost-effective manner with exceptional customer service.  I don’t know why the hell I didn’t go with them for this book and I’m really regretting it at this point.  If Trafford is smart, they’ll throw in the towel and let me have me way.  Otherwise, this could get real ugly real quick.  Authorhouse was kind enough to offer me the same deal thirty days faster for a lot less money.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed because the first leg of the book launch is already scheduled and there are more artists and individuals attached to the project than just me.  If Trafford lets me down on this, they’re letting a lot of people down, and the royalties and venues missed if the book isn’t out will be tacked on to my suit.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they’ll do the right thing…

     As for ‘Breathing Room’ (the two volume poetry collection I’m writing), my editor Carrie Spadter got the manuscript back to me thus far and not only did she really like it, she read it about a dozen times!  I have no reference point for whether or not my prose sucks, but she’s the best poet I know, so her opinion is highly valued.  It doesn’t look as if I’ll have the rhyming collection done in time for the launch of ‘If They Can’t Take a Joke’, but stranger things have happened in less time.  If it’s not ready, I’m looking at releasing four books this time next year: ‘Slapstick & Superego’ (rants and essays only), the Just Buffalo Anthology, ‘Breathing Room: Main Room-free verse’ (self explanatory) and ‘Breathing Room: Attic-rhymes & relics).  That’s a whole lot of books, but they’re diverse, so I believe that there’s a market out there for all of them.  Whatever happens in the next two months, I’m done with Trafford.  I’ll be taking at least one book to Authorhouse, self publishing the slimmer rhyming poetry collection, and we’ll see what we’re doing with the Just Buffalo anthology depending on the funding issue.  Alycia is trying to drum up some contributions from area individuals and charities, but that’s never been my realm of expertise.  More on everything as it develops…

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First Batch Of ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish’ Sold Out!

January 26, 2007

In less than two weeks, my first 50 copies of ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars’ are sold out!  I went around selling them by hand and people bought them a lot faster than I anticipated, so if you live in Buffalo and you want a copy, you’ll either have to go to the Cafe Press site or rush to Don’s Atomic Comics on Transit Rd. in Lancaster before they’re gone!  To buy directly online, click over to:

 http://www.cafepress.com/tomfoolery4.96310262

     For an experiment on a whim, this book is exceeding all my expectations so far.  I am going to order another boat load of them, but I can’t conceivably get them for another two weeks or so, so if you want one now, either drive to Don’s and tell ’em Tom sent you or visit the Cafe Press site!  ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars’ is now the fastest selling bar and club guide in Buffalo history! 

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Brian Kahle & Uncle Hal Wrapup

January 25, 2007

Another busy day down!

I got up at seven this morning, picked fellow Just Buffalo Anthology co-editor Alycia Ripley at 10:30 A.M., we drove out to Lockport for the Kahle & Co. show on WLVL, and I drove Ripley back to her palatial estate in Clarence Center.  Alycia’s mom was kind enough to make me a ham sandwich with dijon mustard after going without something to eat all morning but coffee and soda.  2 pm rolled around and I was off to the Uncle Hal studios out in Amherst/Snyder for a rousing half hour episode for the widely popular national podcast, ‘The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal’.  Hal wound me up and set me loose and if you’re a fan of my work, you REALLY need to hear this episode.  I went off ad lib for a full half hour on etiquette, common courtesy, and the state of gaming industry enthusiasts.   Hal bumped his other commitments this week and liked the interview so much that he assures me he’s putting it on THIS week’s show by Friday, so check his site and check often at:

 www.powunclehal.com

Again, you are NOT going to want to miss out on the show because it is gold.  Normally, I’d be really upset that I couldn’t read a selection but the alternative was fantastic.  We’ve got great chemistry so the show was a hit.  I can’t say enough about this podcast.  Click on the site and listen because you are going to love it! 

     I’m also posting ALL of the pictures taken today up on the yourhub site, so scroll down to the bottom here and click on the yourhub link.  Take a ride on the superinformation highway, baby!

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If They Can’t Take A Joke Update

January 24, 2007

After speaking with Trafford yesterday, it sounds like the trade paperback should be ready by April Fool’s Day but the hardcover is not going to make it on time.  This was a compromise that I recommended rather than having no book to sell when I go on my flurry of promotions, radio spots and other appearances throughout the month of April.  Most (if not all) publishers have a silly clause where they need you to ‘sign off’ on your galley saying that you approve of the overall image and that all errors have been corrected.  I realize that there will be a few errors, and I’m fine with that.  Unlike most writers, I read every essay the second I’m done with it and proof read for errors.  After that, I don’t ever want to see it again unless I’m reading it live and I’d rather invest my time writing new material.  Also unlike other writers, I’m too busy writing books to waste a year of my life waffling around and tweaking the overall look and content of my book.  ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ is done.  It’s been done for almost a year and a half now, and I’d prefer to get it out as soon as possible before the material in ‘Slapstick & Superego’ starts to get dated.  At least this way, people can pick up the trade in April and if they really want a hardcover they can buy that when it comes out later.  The profit margins are always higher on a trade paperback so it just makes good business sense.  And we’re going ahead with the original cover with the clown nose and I chose an out take with the red dot on my forehead for the back cover, so the book will have an almost mirror effect on both sides.  There’s also a pretty good chance that I’ll be selling my first and smaller collection of rhyming poetry, ‘Breathing Room: Attic-rhymes & relics’ along with ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’.  To do this, though, I’m going to need to come up with another eighty or so pages of rhyming poetry in the next two months.  I’m shooting for a slimmer, 130-150 page paperback for the poetry collection in a smaller format through Cafe Press.  The last two days have been tremendously stressful as far as all of the projects are concerned so I’ll be down for the count for a while recharging my batteries so that I’m fresh as a daisy for the book launch(es).  That is, of course, after the two radio interviews I’m appearing for today.  It NEVER ends! 

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Monday Update: Week 10 on Stands, Week 9 in ‘Slapstick & Superego’

January 23, 2007

Whelp, it’s Monday again, which means that the newest print installment of ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’ is on stands in the newest edition of Night Life magazine along with a print ad for ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars’!  In case you didn’t know, I’ll be appearing at The Hidden Shamrock for St. Patrick’s Day on Transit Rd. in Depew from 6 p.m. to 12 p.m. to promote the book with copies on hand to sell and sign along with drink specials and music from the band Busted Stuff, so mark your calendar and I’ll see you there!

     This week’s column (#10) features ‘Charlie And The Asshead Factory’, the final rant in ‘If They Can’t Take a Joke’ about the agony of seeing movies in public with the public.  Last week’s essay, ‘Bizarro Acrophobia’ (about the benefits of being a tall man) is the first essay in next year’s humor collection, ‘Slapstick & Superego’, so if you didn’t grab it on stands, you’ve got a long wait ahead of you.

     I’m beginning to have mounting aggravations with publisher Trafford on their end regarding the publication of my next book, ‘If They Can’t Take a Joke’.  After jumping through more hoops than I’ve ever had to deal with with any of my publishers, they’re telling me that it may not be ready by April 1st.  I informed them that if they couldn’t have it ready that I’d be taking it to a publisher who could, so hopefully, they got the message.  One way or the other, this goddamned book will be done by April Fool’s Day.  There are too many things in place to see that date slip…

     I also found out today that my bar review on Mazariello’s will be appearing in a little daily newspaper you might know as THE BUFFALO NEWS!  That’s right, it’s finally happened and I can finally talk about it.  I’m going to be writing club and bar reviews on an ongoing basis for The Buffalo News Gusto section, so make sure to keep your eyes peeled for that.  I had to tone down any number of themes and content and strip the size of my bar reviews down for a more journalistic feel, but the exercise is refreshing and it does help me get back to my journalistic roots.  Plus they pay, and money is always nice.  Look at this as the first auction in a long succession of selling out.  And speaking of, my interview with local rocker Gregg Sansonne is going to be appearing in an issue of Buffalo Spree magazine sometime this year (either next issue in April or the one after that).  They also pay.  Money is good, and I like it.

     By this point, most (if not all) local publications are running the Call For Submissions that Alycia Ripley and myself put out for the Just Buffalo anthology, and we’re beginning to see a marked increase in submissions.  This is phenomenal, as it’s raising awareness about local authors and poets and all proceeds will be going directly to the Just Buffalo Literary Center.  A glut of submissions will only ensure that we hand pick the very best prose, fiction and nonfiction for the collection, which is due out sometime in 2008.

     Also, Alycia and I will be appearing this Wednesday at 12:30 AM on the ‘Kahle & Co.’ show on 1340 AM WLVL to promote said anthology along with the rest of our shameless merchandising and self promotion.  Make sure to tune in!  I’ll also be flying in solo to join ‘The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal’ for next week’s new podcast.  If you didn’t hear the last show, you should definitely click online over to

 www.powunclehal.com

That should be everything for one week.  Matters look to be in perpetual motion towards success right now, for which I’m grateful.  Make sure to keep up so that you don’t have to take a running start onto the April bandwagon!

Cheers,

Tom Waters

    

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Big Words Site Hits the 1,000 unique hit mark!

January 22, 2007

While this isn’t one of the big time sites, I’m proud and pleased to report that today we hit the 1,000 unique hit mark after three months.  That breaks down to about 333 hits per month, which isn’t shabby.  Thanks to all of you who not only come to the site and read my egotistical meanderings but also those of you who visit every week without fail.  Make sure to tell all your friends and if you have your own site, please give me a link back.  I’ve heard crazy numbers thrown up in the air by peers and other media outlets about thousands of links a day, but show me the money!  How many sites have a hit counter right up on the board so that we know as surfers what’s bullshit and what’s not?  I practice what I preach, and I’d rather stand behind 1,000 genuine hits than pie in the sky numbers, projected demographics and other lies.  Again, thank you.  It’s always a bumpy ride with me and I thank you all for riding shot gun.  Keep reading, keep clicking, and tell a friend.  If you give me a link on your site, I’ll throw some props up here.  There’s no greater publicity than word of mouth, and that’s where you come in.  Here’s to the next 10,000 hits,

Tom Waters

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Breathing Room goes all Gilgamesh on my ass…

January 18, 2007

I had a bright idea yesterday that hit me like a ton of bricks: split the poetry collection right down the middle.  As it stands, I’ve been working on Breathing Room  in two parts: free verse and rhyming verse/archives.  So I came to the startling conclusion that it would be much more affordable for everyone involved and easier to digest if I sliced the anthology in half and released not one, but TWO poetry collections simultaneously.  The free verse portion (main study: free verse) will be released as a top end high quality print on demand edition and I’ll handle the production, design, layout and format for the rhyming edition (attic: rhymes & relics) ala Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish.    I was so pleased with the way that Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish turned out that I’d like to explore other collections with that format.  A second poetry collection is going to be the perfect concept for such a trade paperback.  This way, those who enjoy free verse can pick up the free verse book, people who like rhyming poems can pick up the rhyming poem book, and we won’t all wind up spending thirty bucks on a three hundred and fifty page monster between covers.  It’s all about choice, and speaking of choice, the fans have spoken.  In less than a week, I’ve sold almost fifty copies of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish, so apparently, self publishing is not that bankrupt a notion.  At ten bucks a pop, they’re selling like hot cakes, and I’m going to have to re-up pretty soon.  Readers would rather skip the direct online ordering and buy direct from the tap, so far be it from me to argue the issue.  If you haven’t gotten a copy of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish yet, my new book chronicalling two years worth of Night Life bar reviews, snatch your copy up at Don’s Atomic Comics in Depew (for only $9.95!) or click on over to:

 http://www.cafepress.com/tomfoolery4.96310262

 -where you can buy the book for $13.25 from the comfort and safety of your own home (plus five dollars shipping and handling).  That’s all I’ve got for today.  I’ll be spending most of my day off hand picking my favorite poems from the old collections and importing them to the rhyming collection.  If you don’t like poetry, it’s going to be a bumpy ride for the next eleven months or so because I’m eating, sleeping and breathing it from now until the beginning of ’08.  Deal with it.

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Monday Update Part II: Week 9 on Stands, Week 8 (8 Simple Rules For Doing Something With Your Life) Right Here!

January 16, 2007

I had a chance to grab a print copy of this week’s Night Life today during work on my day off and it looks like I decided to run ‘Bizarro Acrophobia’, the inaugural essay from my upcoming humor collection If They Can’t Take a Joke.  It’s one of my favorite’s about the joys of being a tall man versus guys with Napoleanic complexes, so make sure to grab the print copy if you can.  Below you’ll find ‘8 Simple Rules For Doing Something With Your Life’, an incendiary soap box on how people who get checks on the first of the month can go about getting off their asses and finding a job.  My Time Warner post, in the mean time, has been drawing a lot of traffic, garnering over three dozen unique hits alone in the past two days!  Ha Ha!  Direct TV installed the dish today and I couldn’t be happier.  Just this afternoon I was enjoying the buddy cop goodness of ‘The Hard Way’. Props to the buddy cop films!   Anyhow, enjoy.  ‘8 Simple Rules…’ rounded out the tail end of Slapstick & Superego, which you all won’t see in book format for at least another fourteen months.  Have a great week and I’ll give a shout back to all of you next Monday,

Tom Waters

8 Simple Rules For Doing Something With Your Life

My girlfriend and I went to the reservation to get cigarettes on Sunday (like we do every two weeks after payday) and it was a mob scene. We usually go early in the morning before ten or eleven so we can beat the rush, and there were three cashiers and the line was twenty people deep. I was in a sociable mood, so I asked the cashier, ‘Are people loading up before the Bills game?’ She looked at me with a deep seated disgust and said, ‘Nope. First of the month.’ It’s interesting how the bulk of our unemployed can’t get off their asses to find a job, yet they can drive for an hour and a half on a Sunday morning to pick up smokes. This is what our taxes support, with or without our consent.

I know the job market sucks just a little bit in Buffalo, but c’mon. There are too many two-parent families sitting on the couch, smoking pot, screwing off, or working the system. I went on unemployment once when I was 24 and although I objected to it ethically, I was in a tough spot. It wasn’t the first time I’d been without a job and I had some large bills after getting laid off from a temp job by an evil, soulless cell phone company that rhymes with horizon. As a man, I had a problem with letting someone else pick up my tab even though I’ve been paying into the system since I got my working papers and went to work at a restaurant at the tender age of fourteen. I don’t understand how fathers can coast for years on unemployment not for, but thanks to the children they brought into the world.

And make no mistake, I am not racially profiling here. I’ve seen unemployed people on every end of the rainbow. We went grocery shopping out in Cheektowaga on the first of the month once and it was like a field day. The store looked like a studio audience from the price is right, and if I had a nickel for every tattered flannel shirt and unwashed head of hair, my groceries would have been free that day. I can understand if you get laid off and two-thirds of your union check go a longer way than any help wanted job you can pick up on the fly, but after awhile, it’s time to get on your feet and back into the work force. My main beef is with families who spawn children for the higher tax return and the endless meal ticket. Generations that teach further generations to milk hard working people out of tax dollars that they bleed, sweat and bust their hump over. I know it’s tough to turn the tv off, put on your shoes and look for work, but make an effort. Don’t fill out applications and take references just so you can turn those names in to the department of labor for another dozen paydays. Get off your lazy ass and get a job!

In an effort to do my part for the issue, I’m offering some free advice. I work a full time job, write full time (which pays sometimes), and spend months actively promoting my books when they’re out. A lot of my money has gone into blocks of government cheese. Here, absolutely free of charge, are some handy tools for finding and maintaining active employment in the work force. The only prerequisite is that you’re capable of reading above a fourth grade level. If you’re not, your stupid ass probably hasn’t gotten this far without a brain embolism anyway. Here goes:

1. You Must Leave Your House To Get A Job: While smoking bales of pot, drinking gallons of Red Dog or beating up on your spouse may have it’s charms, you need to exit the door of your home to seek employment. This step is crucial, so you don’t want to miss it. Jobs are often past your driveway and occasionally require you to drive, take the bus or walk a mile or two. I know it’s tough, but give it a shot.

2. Tuck In Your Shirt And Show Up On Time For A Job Interview: It may be acceptable to hang out with your friends in a food-stained t-shirt and jeans from the Clinton administration, but maybe you should find the pair of clothes you wore the last time you were standing up in a courthouse, dust them off, iron them if possible, and put your best foot forward. And it doesn’t hurt to show up within three hours of the designated time that the interview is scheduled. Have you seen that tonged instrument in your bathroom? That’s a comb. If you wave it like a wand through your hair, it will give your prospective employer the impression that you’re groomed. And don’t bring your girlfriend or significant other in with you to hang out while the interview process is taking place. It’s tacky.

3. Try Not To Have A Criminal Record: Sure, that guy looked at you funny in the bar and that dude shouldn’t be throwing it into your ex, but this is known as civilization, so repress the rage and go through life with a modicum of civility. Believe it or not, but prior arrests and restraining orders will make a bit of a ding when someone runs a background check on your Burger King application. They don’t like when you apply for tractor trailer school after jackknifing your Saab off of an expressway after five lines of coke and a fifth of Crown Royal. Shooting or stabbing someone is sometimes frowned upon when a possible boss is considering you as a co-worker. For some reason, people don’t like to be stabbed, and they especially don’t like being stabbed repeatedly. Go figure. Show some restraint and it will show up in your paycheck some day.

4. It’s Easier To Get A Job When You’re Not Repopulating The County: If you keep your pants on for more than 24 hours, you can report to a place of business. If you can master this step, you can get monies to purchase things like condoms, diaphragms and forms of con-tra-cep-tion, or don’t-get-knocked-up stuff. I know your wife or girlfriend looks hot when you’re drunk and she’s battered her face with rouge, but give it a rest. Babies cost money, and it would be nice if it wasn’t my money.

5. If You Get a Job, You Can Live Comfortably For The Entire Month Instead Of The First Seven Days Or When You Piss Up My Money, Whichever Comes First: People who have jobs maintain what’s known as a budget. That’s where they have money, but don’t fritter it away on drive through food, various smokeables, or fancy sneakers. They take some of their money to spend and save the rest in buildings that take care of it and give them more money. These buildings are also known as banks. You can trust them. Sometimes you can get a job with them.

6. Diplomas Are Applauded: If you’re confused with this rule, I apologize. Be it a G.E.D., a community college certificate purchased with box tops, or a business degree from an accredited university, time spent studying something other than videogames, doggy style, or slasher flicks translates into the job market. One of the nice side bonuses of having a diploma is that you can read the Help Wanted section in your local newspaper. It’s not in the Sports section, but every week they advertise jobs that are available for people. Look into it.

7. Crack Cocaine Is Frowned Upon: Although smoking crack is a good way to lose thirty pounds in a month, your teeth, your sanity, virginity in your mouth and buttocks, and your furniture at the nearest pawn shop. It’s what’s known as a conflict of interest if you spend all your time fishing through your carpet looking for crack nuggets instead of a job.

8. You May Have To Get Up Before 12 PM And The Weekend Is, In Actuality, Only Two And A Half Days: Some people who work for a living get up at six, seven, and eight in the morning not because they choose to, but because it’s a part of their job. A good number of interview sessions and job fairs take place at nine and ten a.m. A.M. means in the morning, or after midnight. Something like that. You’d be surprised at how much you can accomplish with your day if you get up before the first block of Jerry Springer. Morning people also drink a beverage quite different from alcoholic and malt beverages referred to as ‘coffee’. It wakes you up when you aren’t naturally used to being up and lends to the physical attributes of being productive. This comes in handy when you have a job. And here’s a multiple choice question for you: The weekend is a)Thursday to Wednesday, b)the beginning of the Sabres game to the end of the NBA playoffs, c)free time you’re allowed after a full work week that may or may not be Monday through Friday, d)Friday night, Saturday and Sunday or e)Time I spent in the holding center until her black eye stopped throbbing and I got bailed out. Pens, pencils and crayons down after five minutes.

That’s all I’ve got for today. Don’t even get me started on the fifteenth of the month, better known as the first of the month, part two. There are a lot of genuinely around-the-bend batshit people drooling, shuffling, raving and placing tinfoil in their homes throughout the Buffalo area, but I’d be willing to be that fifty percent of them are faking it just enough to get a free payday and good psychotropic drugs. Go out and get a frigging job. You just might find some self respect for yourself as a man if you do. It’s certainly not lost in the couch fibers, so after two years, you can get off the couch and call off the search. If I sound jaded, it’s because I’m sick of supporting a bankrupt social system that rewards laziness and senseless reproduction. Long term welfare is for losers. Pass it on.

Enjoying multiple kinds of cheese,

Tom ’pepper jack’ Waters

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Monday Update!: Cheap Degenerate in stores, Night Life on stands (?), Hidden Shamrock review right here!

January 15, 2007

     What with the holiday, I’m not sure whether or not the new issue of Night Life is on stands with the current Big Words print column.  This update will have to be a two parter, so I’m giving you part one today with a reprint of last week’s Hidden Shamrock review and you’ll get part two tomorrow.  You follow so far?  All right.  Also, I’m not sure if you’re on the email newsletter list, but Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars is now available for a cool ten bucks at Don’s Atomic Comics as well as directly from the author, if we’re on a first name basis.  The book is selling like wild fire and supplies at Don’s are limited, so stop in Tuesday or some time this week if you want a copy of the best selling bar guide in the history of Buffalo!  For now, I’ll leave you with the Shamrock review.  I talked to Tom (the owner of the Shamrock) last week and we’ll be doing a huge launch for the Irish book ON St. Patrick’s Day (Saturday the 17th) from six pm to twelve am with massive drink specials as well as the soothing sounds of local band sensation Busted Stuff.  I plan on getting demolished as an homage to the book, so stop out and get loaded with me!  Everyone’s Irish on St. Patty’s Day, so bring your drinking shoes!  In the mean time, enjoy the review and I’ll see you all tomorrow,

Tom Waters

Like A Bridge Over Drunken Waters: Michael Bly at The Hidden Shamrock

It’s Wednesday on a day that I thought I had off and I’m mad as hell and ready to drink whiskey. I roll into the parking lot of the Hidden Shamrock on Transit before Broadway at 9 p.m. and Marinara Mike comes cruising in simultaneously. We stopped up to see Michael Bly perform since I know he’s there every Wednesday like clockwork. The cavalry should be arriving directly, so we pop inside and order our first pitcher of Labatt Blue on draft and what should be one in a long succession of Tullamore Dew whiskey. This seems to be my new favorite and you’ve got to hand it to any Irish Bar that stocks not only Jamison, but Tully’s as well. I start a tab because it’s going to be a thirsty night.

I’ve never been to the Shamrock before, but I love Irish bars and walking in, I can tell this is no exception. The interior is gorgeous with green walls, a fine stained wood bar and of course, shamrocks all over the place. There’s a regulation pool table past the bar and not one, but two dart boars. Plus the place is lousy with young, hot blondes. We stake out a spot at an island near the window when Lindsay, Richie and his lovely wife Tracy walk in while I’m chatting it up with Michael Bly and his gorgeous jailbait girlfriend Becky. I’m kidding. I find out she’s 24 but she doesn’t look a day over 17, which is fantastic. Then we commence to do some drinking.

I grab a vodka and tea for Lindsay and then shovel some free nachos into my mouth. They just so happen to be having an employee appreciation Christmas party, so there’s free food everywhere. It feels like free buffets have been springing up in my wake, which is fortunate. I try to get a good pic of Michael Bly schmoozing for one of my web sites and when I go for a second shot, I find that he’s disappeared like Batman. My buddy Alycia Ripley shows looking festive in a green sweater and Rich, Marinara Mike and myself repair outdoors for a smoke. I hit the head and ‘Joy To The World’ comes onto the jukebox. I couldn’t disagree more. I stop over to the bar and grab a shot of Crown Royal with Michael. I chat it up with Becky and a blonde bartender starting her shift with boobs that deserve a neon sign or a blue ribbon.

The lovely and talented Gregg Sansone shows and we’ve got ourselves a partial Bro-deo. Gregg doesn’t drink but he came out to support his buddy Bly. Michael starts his first set of the night and the crowd is loud and rowdy. He performs his third song, ‘Ring Of Fire’ with an acoustic rendition that reminds me of early Simon & Garfunkel. Then he launches into a pitch perfect version of the Beatles’ ‘Norwegian Wood’. We grab a smoke and Mike leads in with Bob Marley’s ‘Redemption Song’. Gregg walks over to sit closer to Mike’s act and I’m unable to go as Lindsay is being moody. After a few minutes I shamble over anyway and shout out ‘I love you, Michael Bly! Have my baby!’ and jackass it up a bit.

Some scary bald man is making out with a blonde and I despise blatant Public Displays Of Affection. Open mouth make out sessions should be reserved for movie theaters, church and the privacy of your own home. Nobody wants to watch some amateur porn movie on a bar stool when they’re trying to get down to some serious drinking, so spare us the image. Mike segways into ‘Squeeze Box’ and we’re feeling increasingly cramped because some A-hole decides to play darts behind us instead of over to the left at the deserted dart board in the corner. Tracy remarks that she’s concerned about getting a stray dart in the head. Alycia is putting her mouth into overdrive talking up Marinara Mike about her current book, her life, and her upcoming books. Mike is shaking his head and agreeing like a good little bitch.

Bly sings a phenomenal version of ’Rocket Man’ and then ’You Had A Bad Day’, which I can totally relate to on many levels. Gregg notes that there’s a preponderance of punks with white baseball caps and he’s right. Around eleven pm, the bar becomes a little bit ghetto and a lot less rock and roll. Becky says goodbye and Mike sings a rousing version of ’When Doves Cry’. I’m old enough to remember when that song came out! I can relate on a generational level! I should, as I’m 31 and Mike is within that vicinity although I’ve been sworn to secrecy as to his exact age. He finishes his first set and we do another round of Crown. Lindsay is tired, I’m soused, Rich and Tracy crash the party, Gregg says his goodbyes, Alycia keeps selling Marinara Mike and the boys with the white baseball caps continue to try and exude something that resembles thugness. We pop out the door and head out to our cars going our separate ways. The holidays are a living hell but it’s nice to know that we can find sanctuary in an Irish paradise like the Hidden Shamrock with a diverse and talented blend of music from a man like Michael Bly. I’m feeling it the next day but it didn’t matter a bit when we went out. I’m not sure if Bly’s Irish but he certainly drinks like it.

Where the hell was my sweet Molly Malone?

Tom ’Tully’ Waters

When Tom Waters isn’t engaged in the art of competitive drinking, he’s updating his site (www.tomfoolery4.wordpress.com) and tying up promotional loose ends for his next book (If They Can’t Take a Joke) and his next book launch (April).

    

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F%#*K You Very Much, Time Warner Cable!

January 14, 2007

     After only being in Buffalo for a few months, Time Warner has already worn out their welcome with me.  After multiple internet outages and a billing error on their end (a check pulled from my girlfriend’s account A WEEK AGO and they shut the cable off for non payment this week resulting in no cable tv for the last three days), we decided after three prolonged phone calls from customer service reps who had no clue what was going on and couldn’t lift a finger to help us because it was up their asses that we were going to switch to Direct TV for half the price for our hd cable with dvr and Verizon Broadband for all of our internet needs.  Time Warner is fucked, and honestly, without mincing words here, they can go fuck themselves off a short pier.  Keeping our service with them was like the difference between getting analy jail raped by the Aryans or the Crips when you’re doing a spell in the joint.  Both our painful, and both gangs are going to steal your lunch money and leave you bleeding, so why bother.  Fuck off, Time Warner.  Try and sue me and I’ll fucking wreck your lives and make your stay in Buffalo a living hell.  Eat my ass with a melon baller, you soulless, half witted fuckwits…

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Perpetual Money III: Wingman Of The Year!

January 12, 2007

     Against my better judgement, I’m publishing this well ahead of time for free for the whole lot of you.  See if you can’t exert the minimum effort and post some comments for the first time on this site ever.  Enjoy!

Perpetual Money III: Wingman Of The Year

Wingman (noun): One who selflessly finds and

secures prospective single women for his available

friends, family and other single loved ones.

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been nine years since I wrote (or more accurately, channeled) ‘Perpetual Money‘, my original manifesto on the rules of singles club dating (published in my first book, Born Pissed from America House). I still consider it the closest thing to personal perfection that I’ve ever written, and in terms of length, flow, humor and style I continue to try and top that single essay with mixed results. A year and a half later (or thereabouts), I wrote ‘Perpetual Money II: The Accidental Gigolo’ which included ten more commandments regarding club going, singles dating, and other detritus (published in my third book, First Person, Last Straw from Authorhouse).

I never thought I’d write another follow up, as the phase of lounge dating has come and gone in my life. I still go out to bars, but it’s for different reasons, and when I was actively trying to date women in clubs, eighty percent of the time they wanted nothing to do with me, or I was too shy to approach one off the cuff, so to speak. Well now we’ve got ourselves an epic trilogy, because it hit me like a ton of bricks this week: I’ve turned into something of a jewish matchmaker on the club circuit. Now that I’m in a committed relationship and I’m no longer a threat to my male peers or a prospect to damaged women, I still play a valuable and needed role in the club stratosphere: The Wingman. A guy who will go the extra mile for his emotionally crippled or socially retarded compatriots. A man who will dive into a group of beautiful, heavily made-up and utterly unattainable girls and talk up his friends while making friends with them at the same time.

I have officially evolved and I’m glad that I haven’t been weaned out of the discotheque gene pool for my status or age. At 31, I can still get my groove on, but I do so with my girlfriend, a small posse of well wishers, hangers-on and close friends, and (alarmingly and refreshingly enough) I pass out and make a gigantic psychotic scenes with less frequency. I’ve even taken up eating while drinking at the same time, which used to be a trick in bars as difficult if not more than patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time. I am now considered something of a godfather to partying among my fellow drinkers, whether we’ve met or not, and writing bar and strip club reviews for the last five years hasn’t hurt. Every so often when we’re out slamming shots, buddying up to the staff, or just kicking back on a patio during the summer with Cosmopolitans and tall, foamy pints, I’ll see a girl or a group look over and whisper ’He writes bar reviews’. I’m touched by that. Getting back to the topic at hand, though…

To be a good wingman, you must be selfless, friendly, and very un-weird. The point is to get some ass for your friends on the front line, so you need to go in without fear and talk a line of bullshit better than Al Sharpton. You also have to know if your friends are capable of hooking up once they get past the protective bubble of hotness that scares them away from available women. So you’re dealing with a full year subscription of issues right there. In my experience, some people just can’t make things happen in bars, with or without assistance, so don’t put in the legwork if it’s being expended on a lost cause. Herein I’ll impart my final ten commandments on club dating in my role as a professional proxy for one night stands. Take copious notes and contact me in the quad office after three on Tuesdays and Thursdays during my office hours if you have any further questions.

Rule #22: Hot Women Are Not Difficult To Talk To: Once you can wrap your head around this one, you’re set. Hot girls are people, just like you and me. They put their crotchless panties and red leather hooker skirts on one leg at time just like anybody else before they go out, so once you truly accept that in your heart and your head, get past it. As a professional Wingman, I enjoy just waltzing up to a group or finding a central location along the bar and letting them lean over next to me to order shots (since I look harmless) and breaking the ice by asking what sort of fruity/difficult/flaming/sexual innuendo shot that they’re drinking for the evening. Sometimes I’ll take my friend’s money and buy them a round of drinks while playing said single guy up. It’s what I do. It’s a personal thrill to capture the attention of four drunken horny girls at the same time, but it goes no further than that. I could be a soulless and sociopathic degenerate by collecting phone numbers on the sly or making cheap hits for my own personal gain, but I don’t. I’m above that. I know when I’ve got a good thing going, so why compromise it? Most guys this late in a relationship are on terminal lockdown at home with their significant others clipping coupons and talking about what housewares they’re going to tandem shop for the next day at Target, so I don’t want to jeoprodize the amount and illusion of personal freedom I’m given. Which leads me to my next rule,

Rule #23: Know Your Limits: Pissing yourself, falling off the stool, drooling, lighting cocktail napkins on fire or punching out the cover band on stage while you’re enjoying a ’night out’ with the ball in chain are all frowned upon. While your primary goal as an amateur partier may or may not be hooking your bros up during the Brodeo TM,

you certainly shouldn’t mess up a good time and end up spending your weeknights at home with a security bracelet attached to your ankle looking at carpet swathes and talking about baby showers. Behave yourself, find out what you can get away with, and don’t go one inch past that crucial boundary. I get away with murder, so again, I am lucky. I’ve hiccupped through entire mix tapes sitting in the passenger seat on the ride home while shoveling burritos into my mouth and dumping them all over my jacket, but this is a once in a while sort of thing. I’ve passed out in the passenger seat and I have a bad habit of cleaning out my car on the ride home tossing my entire back seat out the side window at three in the morning on main highways, but this is also after far too many free shots and the incumbent excitement that accompanies being out with a large group of good friends and hangers on. When you start knocking over barstools ‘by accident’ or projectile vomiting onto your plate of appetizers, it’s time to scale back a bit and become a quick study in impulse control. If you’re not allowed out, you won’t be able to fulfill your civic duty as a Wingman.

Rule #24: Lie Frequently And Spectacularly About Your Friends: ‘He’s 29, he still lives at home and he works part time at a grocery store’ will not get a girl hot and bothered. ‘He’s 33, he hasn’t been in a relationship for over a decade, and he hates non-gun carrying liberals’ won’t work, either. You are responsible for aiding and abetting in getting your buddies laid. You’re off the market, they’re on, and they don’t have a clue, so this is where you come in. Odds are that things won’t turn into a long lasting and healthy union if they hook up so much as they will end up pressing ham against the rear windshield to the rock ballads of Poison at four in the morning with the motor running, so make some shit up! ‘My friend just got back from Iraq and he’s going back into bodybuilding after he donates his tour of duty money to the local orphanage.’ works, or for another example, ‘Drew is hung like a tire iron. He’s packing some heat down there and he sits that way because he doesn’t want to break any cartilage or muscle tissue in his massive and abnormally large member.’ will also garnish a certain degree of success.

Rule #25: Free Drinks Make The World Go Round: I’m no saint, and odds are that you aren’t either, so charge a going rate per lead. You need free drinks, the girls need free drinks, everyone needs free drinks. The worst thing that happens at the end of the night is a case of whiskey dick, and if you’re a Wingman, you’re in a committed relationship so the embarrassment phase of that is long gone and sometimes, even expected and appreciated after long bouts of sweaty, week long monkey sex. There’s a reason why they call it social lubricant: it greases the gears of getting to know new people and strengthens the bonds between old friends looking to wax nostalgic, so pour it on! Help yourself to three free pitchers from down the bar or slam three shots of buttery nipples if that’s what it takes. Women go through their whole goddamned lives drinking free shots so if you don’t convince your fellow drinkers to sport a round they will be instantly disqualified. I know this goes against what I said in the second installment of this series but I’ve learned better since then. Girls NEVER pay for drinks. It sucks, but it’s a fact of life so pry open that wallet and let the money fly. Open up the tab and there’s a good chance that someone else will be opening up your pants for you by the end of the night.

Rule #26: Make Friends With Your Bartender Or Waitress: Tip well and tip often. Tip over the top, off the cuff, make some bank shots and drop some fives on the bar at the first round so they remember you. I’ve got a home base for a bar now, but I still go out to other places and my time tested universal rule for tipping has never failed me. Be patient, introduce yourself, remember the bartenders name and ALWAYS tip five dollars on the first drink order and one to two on each additional. It’s a bartenders job (as well as a good Wingman’s) to facilitate tawdry and short lived relationships but if they don’t like you and you’re not taking care of them, you’ll get jack squat in return. If you buy the bartender shots, get to know them, and point out girls and ask about their eligibility for swinging from a portable wall mounted sex harness for your friend’s benefit, they will clue you in. Bartenders have a god-like power inside of a club: they pour the drinks. They dispense liquefied magic at their own time and pace in direct proportion to how much they do or do not like you. Don’t mess that up. In addition, they talk to everyone along the bar and away from the bar at some point in the evening, so they hold the key to a million sad stories, single proclamations and tawdry trysts. Invest a small amount of capital and the return in punani dollars will be above any publicly traded price on the stock market. That will be the first time I use the word punani in an essay. That was the last. I don’t even know if I spelled it right, but moving on…

Rule #27: It Doesn’t Hurt To Outsource: Time and again I’ve attempted to set friends up in the comfort and luxury of my own home and it always comes off as a matchmaking session. You don’t want to scare off either party, so invite them and twenty other people out for no reason whatsoever and watch the sparks fly. I enjoy the company and conversation of the opposite sex, and it’s no secret that I’m friends with a lot of young and eligible women. I’m also friends with a lot of single guys who make a decent living and retain a great sense of humor. Bring these worlds together and blammo!: coitus. Don’t bother orchestrating a hook-up at the house or apartment level unless it’s during a party and even then it’s risky. Take it on the road, find a bar and the rest is natural. If you know a place that doesn’t have a lot of single girls, invite some that you do know and see if things click. Besides, single girls are more comfortable if they have a friend guy in the vicinity as a security blanket. I never thought I’d be a heterosexual male with female friends in a club setting, but there you go, girlfriend. It’s your birthday. And we’re going to party like…it’s your birthday.

Rule #28 : Don’t Set Someone Up When They Don’t Want To Get Set Up: Some people prefer the crippling pain of blue testicles or they’d rather nurse their pain quietly out of a tall pint glass and wonder what it’s like to enjoy the company of the opposite sex. Odds are that if you have a friend who hasn’t gotten laid in nigh over a decade, they just might like the company of the same sex but they’re too repressed to realize it. If they’re not trying and they’re wrapped in a sea of neuroses so tightly that they’d rather you didn’t introduce them to a Czechoslovakian gymnast with an opposable pelvic bone, let it go. Some people can’t make it work in bars, others need the guidance and skilled craft of a Wingman, and some are nestled so deep into the closet that when they finally come out the ensuing force propelling them outward will be not unlike that of a NASA launch. Don’t make them any more uncomfortable by forcing them into confronting someone from the opposite sex or making friends with new, sexy and interesting people. Plus there are some men with mommy issues so ingrained into their upbringing that they should be strapping a nipple onto their drinks and meeting up with their own mother’s for late night trysts in seedy hotels. Enough said on that subject.

Rule #29: Separate The Herd And Find The Weak Link In The Chain: I used to think that every group had an ‘ugly friend’ and this is true but it’s not always easy to find in a lineup of say, college co-eds, a nurse’s after work party, or a small gathering of The Suicide Girls (meow). While they may all appear blindingly smokingly, I-need-to-unstuck-my-shirt-and-think-about-baseball-before-I-approach-the-chalkboard hot, one of them is the ugly girl of the pack on the inside. She’s the one with the inferiority complex who will work that much harder in bed for your buddy, so as a Wingman, you have to muster up the courage and the personal sacrifice and listen to determine which girl is getting ignored, cut off in conversation, and picked on. She’s the ugly duckling, whether she’s six feet tall with 36 D’s or not. Listen, Locate and Cross Pollinate. Take her aside and guide her towards the target. Don’t make sudden movements, or you’ll scare off the subject.

Rule #30: When Things Are Going Well, Get The Hell Out: If your intentions are true as a bona fide Wingman, get the hell out of there! When the two strike up a meaningful conversation and start trading information about their favorite music, comment interests and all that other miserable shit we all go through during the courting phase of a one night stand or long term death sentence, by all means, leave the premises! Don’t be a cock-block and evacuate immediately. Talk the guy up when he’s not on the scene, scale back once they foster their own conversation, and then go. I don’t care where you go, but you can’t stay here. It’s his intrinsic duty to call you with steamy details and meticulous notations the next day, so opt out and allow the magic to happen. You’ve just made a friend for life.

And lastly, Rule #31: The Object Is To Indoctrinate Your Single Friends So That They Can Be As Miserable As You Are 30% Of The Time: Single people are annoying with their unlimited personal freedom, financial who-gives-a-damn attitude and the spring in their step. What gives them the right? Dangle the cherry over their noses, let them frolic blissfully into the bear trap and POW!, it’s over. Now they too can enjoy the guilt trips, weight gain, neuroses, sleep instead of sex, theme nights, couples activities, housewares shopping trips to Target for shit that nobody needs anyways, sexual withholding, fights for the sake of breaking a silent pause or personal sense of peace and happiness, and so on. In the process of evolution, they are a threat and an anomaly. Single people should not be. So hook them up with somebody and take them off the market before they remind you what it’s like to be single and miserable instead of attached and miserable.

I am, of course, kidding. A little bit. I’m relieved that I don’t have to hit up the meat market five to seven times a week anymore. The pressure is off and now I can simply go out, enjoy some great food, the company of an eclectic mix of friends, and strong drink. If getting my friend’s laid in the process occurs at some point in the evening, then I have truly accomplished something wonderful in my lifetime. There is no greater gift than the gift of ass. I believe Charles Dickens said that. When I am awarded the Honorary Lifetime Achievement Award For Outstanding Excellence In The Field Of Wingmanship, I will accept it with a Brodeo TM handshake and the three fingered bowling ball high sign. This is what monogamous men in serious relationships do. It is your duty to god and country. Now get to it!

So ends our illustrious trilogy,

Tom ’lounge godfather’ Waters

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Zodiac/Fincher work continues in earnest

January 10, 2007

Unlike my Bret Easton Ellis piece, I continue to labor away on my bio for director David Fincher with few breaks.  Unfortunately, I’ve tapped out any and all internet resources and it looks like no one has gone on a promotional or magazine junket to garner attention for Finch’s new film, ‘Zodiac’ (the title of which was going to be changed to ‘The Chronicles’ due to a similar film but wasn’t for some reason).  I’ve pitched the interview to most of the larger publications in town but this hasn’t gotten me any closer to interviewing Fincher yet, and trying to track down a phone number or email address for Fincher has given me nothing but dead ends so far.  I’ve digested anything and everything Fincher that I could get my grubby hands on in the last three months and I still don’t feel as if I have enough information to put a new twist on a critique.  I guess I’m a perfectionist after breaking my teeth in on the Philip Seymour Hoffman article and my Ellis opus.  If anyone out there has any information on either Fincher’s work or contacting the director, well, directly, please email me at my mailbag address (bigwordsmailbag@yahoo.com).  The man is a giant to me and after interviewing Ellis and Mike Carey he is my next target.  I won’t give up until I have him on the other end of a phone line, so I’d really appreciate some divine providence, here…

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Monday Big Words Print Issue Update: Week 8 on Stands w/Hidden Shamrock/Michael Bly review/Week 7 Right Here!

January 8, 2007

Allrighty then!

A lot can happen in one day!  My anthology partner in crime Alycia Ripley has been schmoozing up a storm today and it looks like the Just Buffalo project will be catching a lot of ink in a lot of papers very soon.  I also spoke to an editor at A Big Local Paper today regarding writing some of their bar and club reviews and I’m going to be doing a test bar review for them this Thursday.  Wanna know where?  I’m not telling you that.

     Night Life magazine is in the process of overhauling their databases and layout and they are slowly starting to improve the overall look, feel, layout and professionalism of the paper, which is great news for everybody.  The new print issue is out today with my bombshell on unemployment, ‘Eight Simple Rules For Doing Something With Your Life’.  If that one doesn’t piss some people off and make a few waves, then I’ll eat my flat hat.  They also ran ‘Like A Bridge Over Drunken Waters’, my bar review on Michael Bly and The Hidden Shamrock out in Depew. 

     Below you’ll find last week’s Big Words I Know By Heart Column on the promise that the New Year holds for myself along with the conflicting resolutions I have, ‘Auld Lang Syne’.  I should be updating fairly frequently throughout the week as there is a LOT going on and I don’t want to leave you in the lurch.  Enjoy,

Tom Waters

Auld Lang Syne

The New Year is approaching, the calendar is rolling back to the starting position for another year, and I can’t help but take stock of my life and make hollow resolutions that I will most likely fail miserably on. January leaves me optimistic, looking forward to 2007 as a time of productivity, promotion and new frontiers. 2006 was not my best year. I spent ten months in a crippling depression with accompanying writers’ block and it wasn’t until October that I snapped out of it and got back into the swing of things. When I did though, I was back up to speed and then some.

From October through December, I managed to launch a new weekly column, put the finishing touches on my next book (If They Can’t Take a Joke), complete writing my fifth book (Slapstick & Superego), successfully uproot and move my fan site from Blogger to WordPress (www.tomfoolery4.wordpress.com), speak with and negotiate a new sister site with more of a focus on local and community events (Big Buffalo I Know By Heart), launch a merchandise site with an exclusive book that can’t be purchased anywhere else (Café Press and Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish, respectively) and continued to work on a mammoth project for a poetry collection while teaming up with a fellow local writer to flesh out plans for a Buffalo Anthology with proceeds going to the Just Buffalo Literary Center. Luckily, I got caught up, and with the way things are looking, I’m going into 2007 with all pistons firing.

My resolutions are the same with varying results every year: make more money, save more money and lose some weight. Last year, I lost ten pounds only to have it find it’s way back sometime over the summer. I’m starting to get comfortable with being moderately overweight as I’m in a relationship and I am in the first phase of my 30’s. Who do I have to impress? For the sake of my health though, and since I’ll be doing an exhaustive promotional junket from April til June or July for the new book, I’d really like to lose 15-25 pounds and keep it off so that I’m not dead on my heels by August.

I was doing okay with saving money well into July until my girlfriend ran into a financial snag and I started picking up some of the tabs around the house with groceries and such and went into financial lockdown. After two months of that, I snapped and started spending lavish amounts of money. Then when I snapped out of my depression, I really started spending money. Nothing says ’Charge it!’ like mania on the other scale of bipolar disorder, but I’ve still kept it within reason. Oh, and I bought and financed the ultimate HDTV setup that I’ve been lusting after for the last three years, so that’s not going to be cheap. I like my toys. My solution to saving money has always been to make more, and that battle plan has served me well over the years. I’m awful at saving money, but I operate under the theory that my literary ship will come in at some point in my lifetime and wipe the slate clean. Make no mistake, I’m not hurting for cash and my credit is better than 70% of the people out there, but it could always be better.

So how am I going to lose weight in a lasting manner this year? I’ll try and cut back on ordering out for food at work from three to five days to maybe two days a week. I’ll stop eating fifteen wings when I’m out at a bar at one in the morning two hours before I go to sleep and my metabolism closes shop for the day. I’ll eat a little healthier around the house and get more exercise, and by exercise, I mean laying pipe with the wife more often for my own good. It’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta do it, and aside from swimming, it’s the only form of exercise I condone. I’ll commit and continue to force myself to drink two liters of water a day because it split’s the fat cells and helps to keep you active. I may have to hunker down and drink fruity low carb beers from time to time instead of the light beers that I’ve grown accustomed to in the last three years.

You’ve gotta spend money to save money, so I’m investing a great deal of it in promoting the next book, which will be my first hardcover in over six years. It’s got a high profit margin and I’m in the black after 100 copies, so I need to get past the 100 copy mark and keep promoting. I’m going to beat local booksellers over the head until If They Can’t Take a Joke is on a shelf at every bookstore, outlet, and gas station in a 200 mile radius and beyond. I’ll get a modest to admirable raise at work sometime in the spring and my consolodation loan will end in March. I’ll dump my tax return on the credit card and collect all markers from the wife once her loan expires. I’ll continue to promote the bejesus out of my merchandise site and force myself to save some ducets for a rainy day come summertime. I’ll commit to following through with less than half of these things and still make out all right.

I’ve got other big plans for 2007, but I don’t want to spoil all the surprises or tip my hand too far. I’m getting older and it’s time to get moving. I’m really proud of my weekly column, so I’ll continue to soldier along with that and hopefully build up a faithful base of angry and drunken Buffalonians. For the entire month of April, I’ll be reading short bits from the new book and touring with local award winning bands in groups of three for area concerts. I’d like to break into more papers and bigger radio stations for publication, promotions and appearances. The way I see it, I’m going to be 32 in October and I want to be self employed by 35, spending my days lounging around the house, napping, and writing books while freelancing for local and national publications. Everything is moving in that direction, so I just have to stay the course and stay focused. I’d like to be comfortably wealthy by 37 and own a house by then at the very latest, and somewhere along the line, I’d really like to have two rug rats tearing it up around the house. If I’m not a successful author by 40, I’ll hang it up and start making beads from home for fun and profit or some similar failure. ’06 was a fantastic year, but as a writer, I’m always wondering what’s on the next page, or what the next chapter holds. Pull up your britches, 2007, because I’m comin’ for ya.

Working off my hangover,

Tom ’party favor’ Waters

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The Close Of Another Classic Trilogy: Perpetual Money 3!

January 7, 2007

One of my most popular literary sequels has finally come to a close: Perpetual Money.  The series about the commandments of club and bar dating has always been a dear favorite of mine and fans alike, and Friday it hit me like a freight train: why not close out the trilogy with rules on how to be an effective and succesful Wingman?  Three weeks ago Steve (the bartender at Applebee’s on Delaware Ave. near Kenmore in Buffalo) christened me Wingman Of The Year after I told him the story about inviting the entire staff of beautiful women at Salon On The Avenue out to our Tuesday Karaoke nights at Desiderio’s in Lancaster.  The seed was planted.  Aside from ‘The Decline and Fall Of Western Animation’, nothing has given me more passion and ammunition than the hustle and bustle of singles dating in the club world.  We’re a natural fit.  Yesterday and today, I pounded out the final ten commandments on club dating as they relate to the Wingman.  You won’t see it in book form for a long time as it’s going in to ‘Crass Menagerie’, but I’m sure I can find a way to impart the essay to you via other means in the mean time…

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Just Buffalo Anthology update/revision info

January 7, 2007

     Poet Karen Lewis brought up a valuable and valid question when submitting to the open call for submissions for my anthology project with co-editor Alycia Ripley; do we accept previously published work?  The answer is yes, of course.  If you have previously published work regarding modern day Buffalo (whether you live in town or not), feel free to send that along be it flash fiction, prose or nonfiction.  Again, you must simultaneously submit your work pasted into the body of an email to myself at: bigwordsmailbag@yahoo.com as well as to Alycia at alyciaripley@hotmail.com .  I want a good sized volume of eclectic talent running the gamut of traditional, post modern and contemporary styles, so please, submit often and tell all your friends with talent!  We look forward to reading your work and thanks for your interest in the Just Buffalo Anthology!

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January Acid Logic Update: No Wonder Lennon Was A Miserable Prick.

January 5, 2007

The new issue of Acid Logic is up online and Wil ran with ‘No Wonder Lennon Was A Miserable Prick’, (from the fifth collection, Slapstick & Superego) my literary discouragement with widespread ignorance.  If you were on the email newsletter list (subscribe for free by emailing ‘subscribe’ to bigwordsmailbag@yahoo.com ) you already read it, but it’s definitely humor in the spleen venting vein.  Wanna read it?  Click on over:

http://www.acidlogic.com/think_for_yourself.htm

      And apparently, my post about Average Joe’s was too controversial to put up on the YourHub site, because the blog dissappeared sometime yesterday and when I got home from work last night, I had a message on my answering machine from one of the founding fathers.  They probably don’t want to get sued or something like that, which I can understand.  I’m not really sure if block is starting to set in or if I’m just exhausted, because I haven’t written a new essay this week and I’m okay with that.  I desperately need a rest, and I’m still trying to figure out how to upload ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ onto my publisher’s site, which is problematic at best.  We’ll figure it out and that book will be in many readers’ greedy little hands come April Fool’s Day.  That seemed like a long time away but it’s coming up on us right quick.  After my editor at Night Life stiffed on getting me the intro for the book when he had an unfathomable twelve month lead time, I don’t feel terribly generous about writing bar reviews for them for the immediate future, so don’t expect to see anything beyond the Big Words print column in the paper for a little while.  The weekend’s upon us and after going to a marathon three hour poetry reading at The Center For Inquiry on Wednesday, I feel like padding out ‘Breathing Room’.  300 pages isn’t going to write itself, you know….

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Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish delivery

January 4, 2007

I just got my copy of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish and the book looks fantastic!  Once people see how professional and portable it looks, they’re going to want to scoop it up.  Avoid the bandwagon and order now!  As I said, I’m running it as an exclusive on Cafe Press and the manuscript and cover have been painstakingly perfected and finalized, so the 2007 edition is complete.  There’s no better time to order than now, so go order already!  Click right here and order up a storm:

http://www.cafepress.com/tomfoolery4.96310262

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David Fincher up in the air, Opie & Anthony off

January 3, 2007

After four months of tireless research on the life and works of director David Fincher (SE7EN, The Game, Alien 3, Fight Club, Panic Room), I am in negotiations to do an interview with the man regarding his work and his upcoming film ‘The Chronicles’, a movie that looks at the casework surrounding the grisly murders of the Zodiac killer in the 1970’s.  I’m really excited about the movie as this is Fincher’s first film in over 4 years, so an interview would be a personal dream come true for me.

    As for Opie and Anthony, I’ve heard nothing back from Steve at Foundry Music, so I’m giving up on any hopes of speaking with them.  It looked like a solid slam dunk but I guess they’re too big and important now to lower themselves to a weekly paper with a circulation of 90,000 copies.  Fuck ’em.  I’ve got bigger fish to fry and more important things to do than maintain any feverish ego other than my own for the next four months.  It sucks, but I’ll deal with it accordingly and move on.

     Also, there’s a good chance that I’ll be writing bar and club reviews for Another Publication besides Night Life, and if this happens, I’ll have to sever my bar reviews within Night Life.  Furthermore, I’ll be unable to reprint the reviews here on the site, which is bad for you but would be tremendously huge for me.  I can’t reveal much because everything’s still up in the air, but keep your fingers crossed this week and say a prayer for yours truly, because if this goes through, it’s a paying gig with a lot more street cred.  I will soldier forward with the Big Words print column as I committed to 52 columns, but the bar reviews may be getting smaller with much wider circulation.  Don’t think ArtVoice on this one and don’t guess The Buffalo Beast, just broaden your mind a whole lot and I’m sure you can guess who…

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Monday Update: Happy New Year! Week 7 on Stands (?), King’s Court/Crocodile Bar Review Right Here!

January 2, 2007

Hello 2007!!,

     While my new year got off to a tremendously rocky start, I think this is going to be a good one.  I didn’t get the opportunity to pick up this week’s issue of Night Life and for all I know it could be delayed a day because of the holiday, but this week we’re rolling out my serious Big Words column about the New Year (‘Auld Lang Syne’) along with my review of The Hidden Shamrock with Michael Bly (‘Bridge Over Drunken Waters’), so make sure to pick that up.  I’m still recovering from the massive party at the Buffalo Marriott with Kiss 98.5, so I will post more prolifically later.  I’m enclosing last week’s review on The dual King’s Court/Crocodile Bar Christmas parties.  Enjoy and I’ll write more later,

Tom Waters

My Kind Of Town: King’s Court and Crocodile Bar’s Christmas Extravaganzas

If you ask anyone under the age of 40, Thursday is the official shotgun start to the weekend. I can’t believe it, but it’s been a year since Lindsay and I have been to King’s Court for their Christmas party. I feel like a hypocrite coming out here the same week that I published a column about how I rarely attend Chippewa bars, but there you have it. I love King’s Court, though, along with owner Sam Gigas. I’ve met some real scumbags in my time, and Sam is a genuinely decent person and a stellar businessman. I’ve been coming to King’s Court’s X-mas parties for going on 6 years and I wouldn’t miss this for the world.

Lindsay and I roll in at 7 and the vultures are circling for the free buffet. By 7:30, a fleet of 80 year old couples cram the stairs to load the buffet plates sky high with mussels, fried chicken and pasta. Lindsay and I wait it out while I guzzle my first pitcher and my first double of Knob Creek. My buddy Ed shows up with his nephew and then Gregg Sansone pops in (with a brown fur coat on loan from John Denver) along with fellow local music sensation Michael Bly. The two of them remind me of Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty back in the day.

Sam Gigas takes the karaoke mic, says his hellos, and leads into a Sinatra cover of ‘The Summer Wind’, weaving through the crowd and hamming it up with the patrons. After the line of freeloaders thins out, I grab five pounds of fried chicken and manage to balance the plate all the way back to a table near the bar that opened up. Lindsay and I grab a smoke and the chain of karaoke pain begins. Michael Bly cycles through text messages and shovels chicken into his mouth. Gregg is swallowing mussels and pasta sauce without chewing and Ed buys me a fresh vat of bourbon.

The buffet whores clear out and when I grab another smoke, some yenta remarks to her boyfriend that ‘They should have had potatoes instead of the Zit-a!’ Happy Chanukah, lady. Dan ‘The Boozeman’ arrives and he’s strangely without free cigars. Lindsay and I hop, skip and jump down the way to The Crocodile Bar for their Christmas Party. Within five minutes, I befriend a Hispanic man who’s eight beers in and doesn’t speak a lick of English. We’re instant best friends. I follow my immigrant friend to the dart board, where he competes with an older blonde woman who has the wrist action down for a rousing round of cricket. Lindsay and I grab a pitcher of Blue Light, a double of Jamison and a plain iced tea for the DD. The place is packed to the gills and the bartenders are all in various states of hotness. Some strange gay man with blonde hair and black rimmed glasses keeps circulating in the periphery and I’m snapping overhead pictures of the crowd for one of my web sites.

I grab a smoke and take in Chippewa in all of its glory. The traffic, the blondes, the madness. When I go back in, Lindsay has secured a table near the front and we make friends with a Canadian HVAC repairman who looks like a six foot version of Luke Wilson. Within five minutes, I say something inappropriate about Canadian people and then I find out that the guy is Canadian, so I apologize profusely and go on a drunken soapbox about how rich the Canadian sense of humor is. I buy the guy a drink and all is forgiven. By the time I get through two thirds of my second pitcher for the night, we’re ready to call it a night. The holidays are wearing down on me and the solid whiskey at both places is taking its toll. On the way out, Ed and his nephew show up when they told us they’d be over in ‘fifteen minutes’. Ed’s fifteen minutes is like an hour and a half in human time, but this is besides the point. I promise him I’ll go back in but I’m doing nothing of the kind. We walk back in and I shake hands with the owner and as soon as there’s a free moment, Lindsay and I do a rope-a-dope and duck back out the door and into Lindsay’s car. Lindsay drives us home and we grab some Mighty Taco before sacking out for the night. I had a quirky and entertaining time at King’s Court and The Crocodile. I wish you both many more years of continued success and prosperity. Feliz Navidad, my friends.

Powered by chicken and bourbon,

Tom ‘yuletide’ Waters

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