Your Disquieting Modern Trendsetters request the pleasure of your commentary. Is Target’s recent “Baby Got Back (Pack)” advertisement a modern trend that sparks disquitude? Please drop Messers Layman and Osmond an e-mail.

& Recently . . .

Dear N.Y.T.B.R. Pt. III

by Josh Abraham

The Editor The New York Times Book Review 229 West 43rd Street New York, N.Y. 10036 March 23, 2003 Dear N.Y.T. Rook Beview, You want blurbs? I’ll give you blurbs. Behold: “Abraham displays a Swiftian gift for satire . ….

Oscar Coverage 2003


Henny Youngman’s Lifetime Achievement Award Acceptance Speech

Thank you, thank you. This means a lot to me. It means I’m old. Ha, ha. Hollywood called me, asking me “How much to do a movie with Catherine Zeta-Jones?” “I said $50,000.” They called back, “How about $20,000?” I…

Bruce Vilanche’s To-Do List

March 23, 2003 * finish that joke about The Pianist … I know a punch line’s in there somewhere. * groom curly golden locks * corner Billy Crystal; ask why he won’t return my calls * need…

Polish Fact

Military Manpower:
10,354,978 (2003 est.)
[Army, Navy(!), & Air Force]

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Ik heb twee draaischijven en een microfoon.
I've got two turntables and a microphone.

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Monday, March 24, 2003   |    Fiction

Why Do People Keep Telling Me I’m Racist and Stupid?

by Pierre Cavanaugh

I just don’t get it. I am an upstanding member of the business community. I work hard five days a week to make a living. Just the other day I was on the phone with my Jew accountant Finkelstein and he was telling me all about how I made so much this year and had given so much for charity that I was going to get a huge refund. I knew that Jew would be able to find every penny he possibly could. That’s why I hired him. At the end of last year, I gave him a big bonus and told him to kosher it up all he needed. This year’s Jew festival food was on me. It doesn’t bother me that he’s a Jew and wears that little beanie hat of his. He saves me money, that’s why I like him. If I were a stupid racist, would I even hire a Jewish accountant? No, I wouldn’t.

I volunteer my time outside of the office. I’m always helping cripples and retards in the community. They opened a halfway house in the neighborhood recently, so I took my half-Irish kids to the opening. My shillelagh-toting ex-wife was there also. She’s got a new husband now, some greaseball Wop Italian guy. I could tell by the tomato sauce stains on his shirt and his pinky ring. Of course, he’s probably connected or something, so I don’t mess with him. You know, connected. To the mob. So what if he’s a meatball-eating, mother-loving hump? He treats my alky ex-wife and kids well and that’s what counts.

Every other weekend my little half-Mick kids and I go down to the halfway house and play with the retards for a couple of hours. I don’t let the kids touch them or anything. If the kids touched the retards, they’d become retarded too and that’s the last thing I need, half-Mick future alcoholics with brain disease. It’s bad enough that I used to have to watch the wife around the alcohol. But they are my kids and I love them. It’s O.K. that they are half-Irish bastards.

After the kids and I go to the retard home, I take them out for lunch. The four of us usually go for Chinks. Imagine that, my Micks love the Chinks! I don’t judge them. If they like the slanky food, then that’s what they get. I give my kids what they like regardless of who made it. If they liked the smelly Indian food with the curry, I’d bring them there. Would a stupid racist do that? I doubt it. I like the Chinky food also. We all sit down and the Chinaman brings our food and we enjoy a nice meal together. It doesn’t matter that he’s a Chink. He makes good food. His Chinky cousin gets my laundry done well also. Should it matter that he’s yellow? No, it doesn’t matter that he’s yellow. He gets my clothes white. That’s what matters.

Speaking of cleaning, I have a Polack broad who comes to clean my house. She’s not nearly as stupid as a dumb Polack cleaning lady could be. I don’t care that she’s a Polack or even if she’s stupid for that matter. I care that she cleans my house well and does it for little money. Stupid racists wouldn’t hire Polacks. Would they? I don’t think so.

I always make sure to tip the Spanish guy that gives me my coffee in the morning. He’s probably got 16 kids at home, so he needs every penny he can get. I have no problem giving him the remaining 13 cents from my coffee every morning. 13 cents isn’t nearly enough to buy the cocaine he needs to sustain his habit. Besides, if he can illegally slip through our mutual border and get a job off the books at a deli, good for him. His wetback friends Paco, Pedro, Juan, José, and Rico probably celebrate on Fridays by drinking tequila from the bottle and shooting pistols in the air. I don’t have a problem with that. You have to blow off steam from a week of work right? And so what if he’s Spanish or Mexican or whatever? It’s all the same.

I just don’t understand why people keep telling me I’m racist and stupid. I do all these good things for people, whether they are my Hebrew accountant or my illegal immigrant Mexican coffee guy. I love all people the same.

Except the Dutch.

Pierre Cavanaugh can be seen on Provo's public-access Channel 6 on Sunday mornings, where he hosts his very own cable show called "Cavanaugh's Corner," a talk/variety show in homage to his favorite musical group, Dawn (feat. Tony Orlando). He doesn't believe in society's conventions and, as such, refuses to put his pants on one leg at a time. He sits on his bed, puts both legs in, slides the pants up to the base of his ass, jumps off the bed and yanks his pants up to his waist. He buttons them to conclude the process, but frequently forgets to zipper his fly. He lives in suburban Draper, Utah, with his wife and infant son. (Don't think he missed the opportunity to make a bigamy joke here. He simply passed on it, but feel free to make one yourself.)