- To the apparently discombobulated, balding gentleman waddling slowly down the stairs to the MUNI platform in front of me and moving back and forth ever-so-slightly just enough so it’s impossible to walk past him and it looks like I’m going to miss my train.
Dear apparently discombobulated, balding gentleman waddling slowly down the stairs to the MUNI platform in front of me and moving back and forth ever-so-slightly just enough so it’s impossible to walk past him and it looks like I’m going to miss my train, and sure enough I got down to the platform just in time for my fingertips to brush against the train doors the moment after they were sealed, and now I have to wait another goddamn 3 minutes for the next one and I’m gonna be late to work,
- To the four tech bros sitting in the table behind me in Little Griddle who have been talking for the past twenty-seven minutes (no joke—I’ve been timing you) about how Snapchat is, and I quote, “the ultimate in scalability.”
Dear aforementioned tech bros,
I have an idea for your next startup—how about you develop an app that makes you shut the fuck up? I’d pay $1.99 for that.
p.s. I also heard you talking about an advertising platform that allows Facebook friends to send each other, and I quote, “the most bomb ads.” If such a product ever comes into fruition, then I swear on the grave of my father, Domingo Montoya, that I will hunt you down and shove this “Instant Grati-Fication” burger so far up your ass that you’ll be coughing up Niemen ranch beef, griddled onions, crimini mushrooms, swiss cheese, and aloha sriracha sauce for a week.
- To the young woman who rolled through the stop sign on Page Street and almost hit me because she was looking at her cellphone and not paying any attention to the goddamn road.
Dear really hot dark-haired woman in the black romper driving a Subaru Outback,
I really admire the way you wear that romper—not all women can pull that off. In any event, you need to either (a) learn how to get off your fucking phone when you’re driving, (b) move to a remote location where you’re not around any other human beings, or (c) attach a siren to your car that screams “WARNING! REALLY SHITTY DRIVER AND AWFUL HUMAN BEING!” at all times, so we know to run as far as possible in the opposite direction when we hear you approaching.
P.S. My mom, circa 1998 called, and she wants her Subaru Outback back. Are you even old enough to know who Paul Hogan is?
- To the genius working at the Walgreen’s on Market and Van Ness who thought it was a good idea to stop carrying 5th Avenue bars in stock, despite them being the greatest candy bar ever (way, way better than Butterfinger).
Dear that guy,
- To the chick who, when the bouncer pointed to me and asked “is that him?”, replied, “no way, the dude I’m meeting is way hotter than that guy.”
Dear woman who is not very good at controlling the level of her voice,
My face may not be as pretty as what you’re looking for, but my ears are fully functional. And if your Tinder date is anywhere as shallow as you, he’s in for a rough night–let’s just say that unlike the woman who almost hit me in the Subaru, you are not pulling off that romper.
- To the ostensibly professional journalists who penned pieces this last week entitled “Shoppers Literally Lost Their Minds When Balmania Hit H&M,” “Linebacker Jayon Brown fills a new role, literally, for UCLA,” and “Bernie Sanders doesn’t like Uber; uses it literally all the time.”
Dear linguistically-challenged friends,
There’s a term “contranym” (also sometimes referred to as an “auto-antonym”), which is used to describe a word that has two opposite meanings. Examples include “cleave” (to cling or to split apart), “screen” (to show or to conceal), and “trim” (to add edging or to cut away at edges). “Literally” should not be a contranym. The word means “actually” or “without exaggeration”—see this cartoon [http://theoatmeal.com/comics/literally] for visual aid. But for some reason, you and thousands of others have decided to misuse this word for the past few years to the point that it allegedly has a second meaning: “not actually” or “with exaggeration.”
I’m calling bullshit here. We already have a word for the opposite of “literally”—and that word is “figuratively.” Try it on for size:
“Shoppers Figuratively Lost Their Minds When Balmania Hit H&M”
“Linebacker Jayon Brown fills a new role, figuratively, for UCLA”
“Bernie Sanders doesn’t like Uber; uses it figuratively all the time”
Was that so hard?
- To the guy on MUNI who is standing in front of the train door at Powell Station.
Dear guy on MUNI who is standing in front of the train door at Powell Station,
Do you realize that there are a number of people who are trying to get out of the train car now, but they can’t because you’re blocking the door? That’s why everybody is saying “excuse me” and giving you dirty looks. You’re not wearing headphones right now, and unless you’re deaf, you should be able to hear them. And even if you are deaf, unless you’re blind you should be able to see that everybody else who was standing in front of the door has exited the car temporarily. They know they have nothing to fear because we’re going to let them all come back in after everybody trying to get off at this stop is out of the train. That’s how we do it here—this isn’t Mumbai, where people figuratively have to fight for their lives to get a space on a train car.
And if you are deaf and blind, then I commend you for taking the MUNI, but you should really carry a white cane or something to indicate your blindness, so people know to give you proper space. But realistically, I don’t think you’re deaf or blind. I think you’re just an asshole.
p.s. And now you’re blocking the people who did this correctly from trying to get back into the train, and the doors aren’t closing and I’m going to be really late to work.
- To the dude gabbing away on his cell phone to his dad about how his company has been valued at $100,000,000 while riding on the fucking public bus.
Dear dude gabbing away on his cell phone to his dad about how his company has been valued at $100,000,000 while riding on the fucking public bus,
I have an idea for an app that would be even more valuable than yours: one that makes you shut the fuck up. I bet it would be worth at least a billion dollars.
p.s. Once you’re super rich, please (a) donate 99% of your riches to charity and (b) use the rest to pay somebody to cut that fucking mullet. Seriously, the starting line of the 1985 Edmonton Oilers called, and they want their haircut back.
- To the teenage girls who create/perpetuate modern slang.
Dear young ladies who are responsible for such hits as “on fleek,” “squad goals” and “YOLO,”
Thank you for making me feel extremely old. That’s hella groovy of you.
P.S. At the very least, you did inspire this classic joke:
Q: Why do teenage girls always walk in groups of 3, 5, or 7?
A: Because they can’t…even…
- To the supports of Trump, Carson, and the other Republican candidates.
Dear Freedom-Loving Patriots, Christian Soldiers, and other Real Americans,
Words fail (or, as the kids say in today’s modern parlance. “I…can’t…even…”). Actually, they don’t. Here are some words that describe what I’m feeling right now:
I devote a significant chunk of my mental energy to convincing myself that you don’t exist. I have chosen to live in a city and state that might not be as socialist as I’d like, but that is, at the very least, not chock-full of unabashedly overt racists, sexists, homophobes, and other bigots.
But you all exist, in very large numbers, and now you want a president who is of a similar ilk.
Fuck you guys.
Note: to be clear, that photo above is absolutely not meant to in any way disrespect Andre the Giant. In fact, if I hear about any of you punks dissing Andre the Giant, I’m not gonna bother writing a rant about you, I’m just gonna hunt you down and break your kneecaps. That’s what Andre would do—and he sure as heck wouldn’t vote for Trump.
- To Rebecca Solnit
Dear Rebecca Solnit,
I have a ton of respect for you and everything you do, but I was a little disappointed today when, during the panel discussion you were moderating at the CCSF Howard Zinn Bookfair on new interpretations of masculinity, you completely dismissed my question about the blurring of the dichotomy between the masculine and the feminine and whether there still is a purpose to gender differentiation or whether, as an evolving society, we should strive for something close to androgyny. While I understand the need to stay politically correct in the university environment, I worry that not having any open discussions amongst mixed crowds about the key social issues of our time, including the transformation of gender roles, will stifle any progress and ultimately be a detriment to the feminist cause. Anyhow, let me know if you want to meet offline to discuss.
P.S. We should also discuss the Google Bus phenomenon. While I agreed with your initial essays on the subject, I think the circumstances have changed and it’s time for us progressives to re-evaluate both our tactics and our rhetoric.
- To any able-bodied human being who uses the elevator to go up or down one floor.
This building comes equipped with stairs, and The Good Lord gave you a pair of legs, so use ‘em!
P.S. If you’re an atheist, that doesn’t excuse you. You still have those legs, whether or not they came from an invisible deity. And in the time you just took to complain about how I’m impinging on your religious freedom (or, more specifically, your freedom to not have a religion), you could have just walked up the fucking stairs. Instead, I have to wait for the elevator to make yet another stop, and I’m already late as heck because of those aforementioned assholes on MUNI.
13. To the little black fly that is buzzing around me as I sit typing up these rants in a café and keeps landing on my face.
Once you land on the table, I’m gonna fucking smash you.
Epilogue: The fly landed on the table and I fucking smashed it. The elderly Japanese woman sitting next to me eating vegan lentil soup gave me a fierce nod of approval.