Monday, March 23, 2009

A St. Patty's Day Miracle

So here's an inspiring true story of luck, inspiration and redundancy. The date, March 17th, 2009. Four days had passed since my birthday and two since the Ides. Both dates brought with them a refreshing lack of stabbings, and I was hoping my good fortune would continue on St. Patrick's Day.

Oh come on, this happened ONCE. Let it go.

But work came and went without incident, and I was even able to grab a pint at lunchtime and watch some of the parade on the TV. Good times. After that I zipped up to the Upright Citizens Brigade Office to submit sketches of mine in order to be placed on a Maude Team. This would allow me to help put together a monthly sketch show at the UCB theater, so keep your fingers crossed that they like my stuff!

I could use this blog to whore myself even more!

Having submitted my envelope and gone back to the street, I remembered to call up Subastar, because I was going to meet up with her and Woot after work, possibly for ice cream. So yes, I called her and... no answer. Hmph. Not wanting to go home, and also hoping to avoid the subway/lack of signal, I decided I'd wait for her to return my call, and go in search of mischief.

The bars were teeming with revelers as I meandered down Broadway from 30th Street. Eventually I found myself at Madison Square Park. My phone was still maintaining its icy silence. I figured, hey, this'll be a pretty good place to spend some time. There's plenty of benches, two fountains, and a dog run. I can easily kill a half an hour or so. Hell I could just chill out by the big statue of William H. Seward if I had to. He's a cool dude.

"Take a look at this pimp chair and call it a 'folly' now, bitches."

It was about this time that I noticed a small group of people near the building known as The Shake Shack. I was immediately intrigued. Could it be open? Might I be only moments away from frozen custard, or a frozen custard based shake? I would have to investigate.

For The Shake Shack, yes, this does count as a small group of people.

Upon closer examination, it was indeed open.

Closer examination:

As I stepped back from the rear of the line to take this picture, that man with the dog got in line in front of me. Hmmm... I can't blame him.

And so I got in line. IN line. I waited IN line to place my order. I am currently ONline writing this post. I am using the internet. I am ONline.


So the minutes ticked past and a small voice nagged inside my head. It was trying to tell me something. Finally it clicked, and I remembered that the small voice belonged to a small person, Woot. She had mentioned that The Shake Shack offered special flavors of shake. This sentiment was echoed by the Gothamist. I looked to the board that announced which day carried which flavor, and my heart nearly shat itself.

Peppermint Patty.

The Shake Shack offers a Peppermint Patty Frozen Custard based shake on Tuesdays in March, including Tuesday, March 17, the Feast Day of Naomh Pádraig.

"Yo, snakes. Get your slithery asses outta here and bring me a damn mint shake. Amen."

Time immediately hit the brakes. The seconds ticked by hours apart. The line moved slower than a group of fat tourists in Times Square.

Another detail of Shake Shack. There exist two lines. The A line is for general purpose ordering- shakes, food, custard and everything else. The B line acts as a sort of pressure valve, letting people who just want to order custard and drinks and other items that can be prepared quickly to get out of the way and keep the line from wrapping all the way around the park. Seriously.

Given the small number of people, both the A and the B line were taking all orders. I got waved over to the B line when it was finally, finally, at long last finally my turn to order.


Me: Hello, I would like a peppermint patty shake, please.

Counter Attendant: Oh, Ummm...

(Hesitation. Panic! OhJesusno. What could the problem be?)

Me: Oh, I'm sorry, do I have to be in the A line to order shakes?


CA: No, I can take care of you here, I just don't know if we have any more of those.

Me: Oh, that's not good.

(Not good in the I'm too pretty for jail way, and also the I will burn this place to the ground with the savagely beaten man-with-dog who cut me in line still locked inside way.)

CA: Let me check, hang on.

Me: Will do.

(Mental inventory of potential weaponry: keys, belt, flashlight, cell phone charger/garrote wire, skeletal assemblage of man and dog.)

CA: Good News, it looks like you're going to get the very last one!

Me: Boo-Yah!


and scene.

I paid my money, and he gave me my reciept and a pager that will blink and vibrate when my order is ready. I accepted it acting as though I would not be perched on top of the serving counter itself, glaring at the employees for the entirety of the shake preparation.

My birthday: 3/13 My personal "lucky numbers": 3 and 13.

My pager:

And yes, that is the price of one shake.

So now came the second waiting period, which was better and worse than the first. Better because I knew I had secured one, and that everyone in line behind me hadn't. Worse because I'm so close, please don't let anything happen now.

The pager jumped and started beeping and shakin' and I wet myself a little. Then I went on up to the shack.

The man behind the counter handed me my shake. And Saints preserve us, it was green! Green and minty and beautiful.

I think I'm going to enjoy this...

And I was right. Pure bliss in Mint Frozen Custard Form. Absolutely perfect and completely decadent, with just a hint of schadenfreude at the end for all those poor mintless bastards behind me.

More importantly, despite McDonald's best efforts, I found and enjoyed a green mint shake on St. Patrick's Day.

You hear that, Clown?


I win, McDonalds.



Hope all your St. Pat's were as memorable, if not moreso. Take it easy babies.



PS - Subastar did call me and I met with her and Woot and another shortly after getting the shake. In fact, she took this picture:

Total victory.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Marketing 101

I've two quick things to talk about before next week, so the next few days will seem to be a blur in the normal course of this blog. The first item of interest is a sales pitch that I'd not heard before. I'll mention as a warning to those with ADD: this post has no pictures. Sorry.

I was walking around the city after work yesterday, and I was at the intersection of Broadway and 8th, about to hop on the Uptown R or W train. There's a man standing on the corner with a CD in his hand, and a plastic shopping bag of CD's in his other hand.

Now we're talking blank CD-Rs in a slim jewel case, here. Whatever was recorded on those discs, it was not done on professional equipment. In short, the man was an entrepreneur.

As I was approaching him, he called to people to come and purchase his latest artistic endeavor.

"Hey, buy this" he said.

The woman declined.

"Take a look at this" he said.

A man continued on as though he hadn't heard.

It came my time to get past this man. For the record, I really had no interest in buying this CD. I prepared my New York City stare and was ready to reject his offer. That's when he switched up his marketing tactics.

"Buy this you WHITE BASTARD!"

I broke stride, incredulous.

"Ah, I'm sorry man, I didn't mean that" he said, embarrassed that the frustrations of peddling his wares had gotten the better of him.

"That kind of hurt my feelings." I said, embarrassed that he had seen through my disguise so easily.

"Naw, but seriously," he continued, "You don't listen to reggae music, do you?"

"Honestly? No, I don't." I realized that I was standing in the middle of the crosswalk, and should probably move again soon. What I wouldn't realize until later is that I had just answered his "seriously" question with "honestly." The recognition would haunt me for hours.

"That's all right, have a good one, man." His hand moved in a gesture trapped halfway between a wave and a salute. He seemed resigned to the fact that calling me a white bastard probably wasn't going to sell his CD.

"You too, good luck" I said. My mind was racing to remember why I don't like reggae. Is it because I'm a white bastard? Is it because I don't smoke pot? Because I have a job? These questions clattered around as I cleared the curb and walked down the subway stairs.

And for the rest of that subway ride, I'll be damned if I didn't want one of those CD's.

So, I'm sorry, crazy reggae man. I'll definitely buy one the next time I see you.


White Bastard

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's Day everybody!

Ok, I have a few bits of business to get through today, so let's get moving. First, my birthday was on Friday.

Hooray! It was a fantastic time, made extra special by a present scavenger hunt, a conspiracy of gift giving, and a dinner at Dinosaur BBQ, which you'll see in a little bit. Also awesome was this picture, which I found set as my desktop background on my work computer:

Courtesy of the crazily talented Woot.

I love that picture. The Baron looks so pissed off... the ducky cake that he obviously baked himself... how is the brain blowing that party favor... it's all wonderful.

On to Dinosaur BBQ - a great dinner with ribs and close friends who I am insanely lucky to have in my life. Thank you all:



Also, they were willing to wear silly pirate masks in public in honor of the event. True Friendship. Here's Subastar trying to give me mine:

Why in God's name is there an eyehole cut into the eyepatch section of the mask?

After dinner, there was a bit of bar visiting and general silliness, of course.

Oach and Sandstone sharing a laugh.

Here's Subastar and Woot sharing a moment.


And then there's this:


So yes, thank you to all my friends and well-wishers. I had a great time that I will remember forever.

Which brings us to St. Patrick's Day. Hooray! Enjoy the parade, everyone who is both in NYC and can get out of work to see it. Sadly I don't qualify, so I just have to wear a green shirt and a wistful expression.

Along those lines, let me also express a heartfelt DIE AND ROT LIKE PIGS IN HELL to McDonald's restaurants.


Once again, I am forced to endure a month of March devoid of Shamrock shakes and it's because of you. Why you would deprive 8 million people of minty goodness is absolutely beyond me, but it also makes me wish I could shoot blood out of my eyes like a horned toad. You better believe that if I could, I would visit every McDonald's in the NYC region, order a Shamrock shake, and then when the counterperson looks at me in stupified silence, I would scream and then HERE COMES THE EYE BLOOD.

Let's get gene splicing, boys.

I don't know exactly what the reaction to that would be, but I would love to find out.

And So, I must do as I have in the past, and re-post my own recipe for home-made shamrock shakes. Please note, this recipe works best if you're already late for a party.


1 bottle Baileys Mint Chocolate Irish Cream
1 half gallon vanilla ice cream
1 half gallon milk
mint extract (to taste)
green food coloring

serves: several party guests or one morbidly obese mint-prone alcoholic

Make sure you have Rev, O'Morchison and a Redheaded Irish Lass on hand.

1) Combine two scoops ice cream, two glugs Baileys, a splash of milk, a capful of mint extract (to taste) and several drops green food coloring in a blender

2) Blend.

3) R: Does this taste good? M: Yeah fine, we're late and I just got a text message R: fine, let's put it in the cooler M: What the...? R: Oh... Oh... OhGodOhGod it's everywhere, quick get paper towels M: It's leaking all over! R: Is the pitcher thingy cracked? M: I don't think so... R: Here, mop it up with this M: Do we have more paper towels? R: I don't see any RIL: Here's a napkin from subway... M: Screw it, grab all the ingredients, we'll just make it there R: (string of expletives) M: Wait, wait... the base wasn't screwed in tight... I think I fixed it... R: Seriously? M: Oh God, it's dripping down between the counter and the stove RIL: Hm. At least it's milk based so you have the smell to look forward to. R: Ok, let's pour this in the cooler and keep going, I think it's better now.

Repeat steps 1 & 2

I've actually lost my train of thought now, so I'll put this one out as is. Peace out.


Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Further Self Promotion

Ok, so it seems like a cop-out, kinda, but I'm posting another video instead of writing a full post. My reasons are two. First, I'm a lazy, useless drain on this country's precious resources. Second, I'm working on writing some sketches, and that cuts into my blogging time allotment. And thirdly, I like looking at myself and I hope you do too.

This is an episode of The Bizzy Coy Show, hosted by my good friend Bizzy Coy. She films this in her apartment in Brooklyn and has been trying to get Oach and I to guest on it basically since its inception. I'll say this qualifies to be on this blog because I physically appear in it, and also wrote most of my own dialogue.

Oach is still holding out for a bigger payday from Bizzy, but since guests are compensated with baked goods, the negotiations will be fierce.


Later babies,


PS - Happy Birthday to my Blog, who turned 2 years old last week!

Monday, March 2, 2009

As Promised

Good Morning.

Ok, two weeks ago I alerted you to the Horrible Awards voting website. You know, the "Best Non-Musical ELE Video category? I said something to the effect of "you go and vote for it and you'll see a lovely new Baron Mind video."

Unfortunately, since we're working on the honor system I can't selectively reward you. Therefore I'm holding up my end of the bargain and hoping you do the same. What's more, if you enjoy the video, you might want to go to the Horrible Awards and vote again. I mean seriously, who here has only one email address? AmIright?

Without further ado:

Victory Celebration from Campsite Studios on Vimeo.

A little background info:

This video was conceived in response to a message from Woot, with several different online video contests. This one was a 'Do Your Best Hammer Dance' contest. Oach and I set out to Astoria Park, armed with a thankfully warm SuperBowl Sunday and an incredibly loose definition of the word "Best."

Unfortunately, as sometimes happens, life got in the way and we missed the entry date for the contest. Our dancing footage languished on Oach's editing computer until this weekend, when we finally got our stars aligned and shot the intro sequence, which arguably turned out better than the dancing sequence. I'm quite proud of this video and once I get used to the world knowing about my lack of dancing ability (rather than just suspecting), all traces of embarrassment will slip away.

Hope you Enjoyed it.

Now go vote!