Monday, December 29, 2008

Merrrrrry Christmas! There's just something about the holidays that makes me want to dress up like the saddest Santa you ever done seen, sit on some unforgiving New York curb, and smoke a but. But that's just me...

If you need a little more cheer, how about this?



Yes friends, the prunes will hit you with a thud. That was just a glimpse from inside the New England Compound, where I am hiding out this weekend because it is easier than real life. I here's hoping your Holiday keeps you regular! See you in the New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Snarkiness Foiled Again


This post is usually the post most of you look forward to all year. The 3rd Annual Holiday Tourist Pictorial. The time of year where I rope some poor bastard into following me around while I try to appear less creepy than normal as I angle to capture tourists doing stupid / cringeworthy /commendable activities. Every year I too am filled with this anticipation. Will I capture some one wetting themselves? Will someone be eating a Chiptole while wearing a Statue of Liberty hat? A Southern Senator getting a handjob in the Ramble, perhaps? You just never know.

However, on this year something was different. As I rose, I woke to the pitter pat of little raindrops. "Sure am glad I have that Power Rangers rain pancho," I nodded with a smile as I contemplated whether or not Condi's forehead might declare war on the rest of her face.

After getting dressed, I grabbed my Cannon Powershot (the official camera of Patrick Garrigan) and prepared for hilarity. My iPod, that staple of passive aggressive New York isolationism, had been left at my desk. I guess I would just have to just listen to what's happening around me I thought as a shudder shook my frame.

On my way to the train, I encountered an old lady struggling with her shopping cart on the white ice (or "whice" as it's known in some ciricles). Guess what I did then? You'll probably guess steal all the protein out of her cart to fuel my ever growing biceps -but you would be dead wrong! I helped her across the street! No, really I did that. Then as if that wasn't bad enough, when she made is safely to cleared sidewalk I said, "Happy Holidays!" Happy Holidays?! I was covered in sentimentality, it smelled like a apple cinnamon Glade plug-in, and I did not like it.

No sooner did I enter the epicenter of clumbsy, tense awkwardness that is Times Square and bring my camera to my eye, wouldn't you know it, my battery died. Too lazy / cheap to go buy a new battery, I just walked around, and thought to myself, "the city is so much different without my headphones on."

What struck me then was the calm. When I headed out of my house that morning, I expected nothing but hustle, bustle and distinct overtones of absolute panic. I didn't find that at all. The mood was content and helpful(?) Strangers talking to each other. New Yorkers giving directions without a hint of irony. It was, dare I say, picturesque.




Winter agrees with New York, and even snarkiness can take a holiday. ...for now.

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EDITORIAL: Never fear, the Holiday Tourist Pictorial is not dead. Tourists look like TOTAL ASSHOLES during New Years! Hooray! Details to follow.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Tightening Santa's Belt

MERRY CHRISTMAS POOR PEOPLE!

Has it been an awesome year or what??? Gas prices have gone up and down like Richard Simmons at a truck stop, (2) kick ass wars, and now we're in an official recession! Fucking sweet! Fortunately, none of this has effected me as I don't have a car, the military said I was too fey to join, and sales of my book (which coincidentally makes the perfect holiday gift for your loved ones this holiday season) and wise investments in cardboard boxes/single occupancy homes have wholly insulated me from the tumultuous peaks and valleys of our unstable economy.

Despite my good fortune, I am not in touch out of touch with the common man. To prove, it I use phrases like "reckon," "fried mayo balls," and "No, you can't have a sample of my DNA, Maury." Beyond these more superficial gestures though, I've decided to use this week to help people who may not be in the fortunate position that I find myself by providing a few helpful pointers to help you, the pauper, get the most out of this holiday season, and start the New Year a healthier, happier you!

A Gift That Keeps on Giving.

This year forget the Wii Fit or Elmo Live or Havoc Helis. No, this year show your family you care by arming them to the teeth. Nothing says, "oh, I'ma gonna get me my money when there's a run on the bank." quite like the warmth from the of a freshly fired Smith & Wesson.

We've all seen that holiday classic "It's a Wonderful Life." Learn from George & Mary Bailey -don't let the complete and utter collapse of our financial infrastructure ruin your honeymoon! So this season put large, barely legal guns under your Christmas trees, present them on all (8) days of Hanukkah, give them whenever you give shit to each other during Kwanzaa -your families lives might just depend on it.

Heating Bill Woes?

Did you get your heating bill this month and think to yourself, "I sure am glad I have (2) desirable kidneys?" Me too. If I had a heating bill, which I don't. Nevertheless, I understand your plight as it is the same feeling I have when I get my cable bill for On Demand porn. The cure for both of our problems: loiter more.

Yes friends, learn what our indigent friends have known for decades. Staying warm with out spending a dime is a simple matter of staking claim to a public-private place until that place closes! So turn off your heat, grab your laptop and head to your local Starbucks.

Here, you can bask in perceived importance as you play brick breaker and finally write that feel good screenplay about Phil the one legged unicyclist (poster tagline: "Phil: One Foot, Countless Possibilities") -all the while saving you money you will undoubtedly blow on artisan beers and arugula salads, you douchebag.

It's Your Money, Not Theirs

You know what eats up a lot of people's year end money? Charitable contributions. Ew. Let's think about this. Every year, you give money to some deserving organization, and how do they thank you? By sending you a year of direct mail assaults ASKING FOR MORE MONEY! The nerve.

Luckily, I have a solution that will give you that warm, fuzzy feeling while keeping you wallet chock full of dolla dolla bills, y'all! Go to your local Dollar Tree, Big Lots, or rich persons garbage can and get the most expensive stationary you can find for under $1.50. After purchasing some classy correspondence it's time to get to do some role playing -this time without the policewoman uniform. Hey-yo!

Imagine you are a well educated, underpaid development assistant for some non-profit or do good organization and write yourself a cornucopia of flowery thank you notes on behalf of these groups. Don't forget to use loopy script and include phrases like "sizable contribution," "staggeringly generous" and "we look to name a wing after you, " in your letters for maximum effect.

When people ask about all the thank you cards, and they will, reply "every year it's like passing a kidney stone, but it's so worth it." Then sigh humbly before resuming your conversation.


So that's that! I hope I made your holidays better! If so send me a big, gushy letter I'll set it next to the others. And tune in next week for the 3rd Annual Holiday Tourist Pictorial. Get into it!

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Reminder:

20th Annual New York Cares Coat Drive. As in past years, I’m collecting coats for New York’s needy. So if you live in the (5) boroughs of NYC and have a new or gently used winter coat that you would like to contribute, please drop me a line @ greatness.with.gumption@gmail.com and I will be happy to make arrangements to swing by and pick those up from you! Best part? FREE HUGS!

Monday, December 08, 2008

Warming You Up

For some reason, this year my landlord has opted not to turn the heat on in my apartment. Fortunately, for me I will simply make angry calls and threats not to pay this months rent. Others are not always so lucky.

This year, as in the past few years, I will be helping with the New York Cares coat drive. So if you live in the (5) boroughs of NYC and have a new or gently used winter coat that you would like to contribute, please drop me a line @ greatness.with.gumption@gmail.com and I will be happy to make arrangements to swing by and pick those up from you!

Additionally, there are a series of cool events that you may want to take advantage of ranging from discounts at gyms to free hats and gloves to my personal favorite, free booze. Thanks so much for your help and I look forward to hearing from you!

Monday, December 01, 2008

We Chop Down Trees Better Than You Chop Down Trees

With holidays now upon us, it’s time for that most cherished of jolly seasonal traditions –anxiety induced overeating.


Additionally this is also a unique opportunity to get in the festive spirit and decorate your home! The Garrigans are good at three things: Irish jigs, selecting the perfect Christmas tree, and the planning and execution of military coups. Fortunately for the world, winter is an awful time to stage a military upheaval so we opted to go find a nifty tree!


As children, rather than going around enjoying the sights and sounds of the holidays, my sister Lise and I would use our spare time to peek in widows and judge others holiday displays. “You call that tinsel? Fucking amateurs,” Lise and I would snicker and then high five.


A lot of you are probably wondering, “why are you guys such assholes?” Frankly, I really don’t know. Our parents are really nice people. While our judgey quotient might be slightly higher than yours (and who the hell are you to judge me, I know your other Firefox tab has porn on it), what this really does is create opportunities to excel in stupid shit that no one else sees as a competition. Like cutting down the perfect Christmas tree. This Saturday we engaged in that competition that ages back to the first Olympiad –CRUSHING YOU IN CHRISTMAS TREE SELECTION.


As the sun rose on the Garrigan Compound, and I finished my favorite nude sun salutation pose, the Farting Gopher, I exhaled from my Burnt Cyan Shock rah, and thought to myself, “this is going to be the day that I select the best Christmas tree. The best Christmas tree ever. This is also the day I should do some serious manscaping, yowsa!”


After consuming a bowl of generic brand Raisin Bran Crunch, I gathered my team of parents and sibling for a pep talk:


As we enter Christmastime, I want to impart a little bit of advice. In this season of giving the best gift that you can give to others is being the best you, you can be. So much so that the best you that you are is better than the you that others are and they will be all, “thank you for giving me the gift of your superiority, can I get your dry cleaning for you?” You will then pat them on the head and say, “you’re welcome, and yes you may get my dry cleaning, but not too much starch this time it makes me itchy, okay?” Because that’s what Christmas is about, chemically laundered clothing, and gifts of Greatness. Now as we go out there on the lots today there will be lots of “families” and “youngsters trying to enjoy the magic of Christmas.” Scrape ‘em off. You have one goal and one goal alone; get the best tree on the lot. Now, the terms of my parole will not allow me to openly advocate violence, but all of you will all have unforgivingly sharp tree saws in your death-paws and accidents happen out there on the rolling hills of Holly’s Happy Home Farms, accidents happen all the time…. That’s all I’m sayin’. Does anyone have a valium to counter the ‘roid rage I’m feeling right now? No? No one? Okay. Don’t forget to wear a muff and let’s go out there and kick some Christmas ass! Hoo-rah!


With that we loaded up our intimidating Honda Fit and aptly named Truck-That-Could-Use-Some-Serious-Maintainence-Because-It-Sounds-Like-The-Entire-Exhaust-System-Could-Fall-Off-At-Anytime-Mobile or TTCUSSMBISLTEESCFOAAM for short, and headed off to Holly’s Happy Home Farms.


When we arrived at Holly’s Happy Home Farms, I realized quickly that in fact, no one was happy. No one at all. No, these people with their babies, dogs and merry hats with ear flaps had one thing on their mind, stealing my tree. “NOT TODAY ASSHOLES!” I shouted as I threw the paper cup that formerly held just the most delicious spiced apple cider you ever did taste to the ground and stormed out of the wreath barn.


The great Chinese General Sun Tzu once said, “he who wants to chop down a tree should go to a tree farm.” Having followed this first axiom to a t, I knew the perfect tree was not far away. But wouldn’t you know it, no sooner did we hit the lots, my entire team suddenly fell to skitter. Well, here, look for yourself.



The most crushing blow to morale was when my mother informed us that she wanted to have a giant Christmas. Knee-jerk reaction: Awesome! Costa Rican villa here I come. Imagine my disappointment when instead it just meant that she wanted a tiny tree so she could wake up on Christmas morning, lumber down the stairs and go, “fee fye fo fum, I smell presents –give me some!!!” and then shake the presents out from under the tree. When I told her that was an awful idea she told me –and I quote- “shut up, pinhead.” And then she ate another family’s baby.



If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s the green movement. A bunch of people telling me I can’t use my Styrofoam cups to choke river otters. I am an American, I do what I wanna do. Well, imagine my chagrin when I discovered that I had a tree hugger on my team! No really, he wouldn’t stop hugging the damn trees. Stinking hippies.



Listen, given my love of musical theatre I can understand the desire to break into dances impromptu, but when Lise performed the entire dream ballet from Oklahoma on the stump of a previously felled tree, well it was just too much. When she finished she ran over to me pleading, “I’m sorry I let the team down Patrick, it’s just that I was moved by the spirit of the dance. The hills were alive with the sounds of music!” To which I icily spit back, “the sounds of music don’t put the perfect Christmas tree in our den do they, Lisa? DO THEY?” She started crying and I took a hit of Skoal.


Disappointed by my team members, I knew it would be on me to find the perfect tree. Unfortunately, I quickly realized I didn’t know how to pick a tree. In my blind pursuit of getting a tree that was better than everyone else’s I didn’t know what made a good tree, what made a good Christmas.


Suddenly, across the glen I saw a family more attractive than mine pointing at what I guess was a good tree. Re-invigorated, I hopped on my tree sled and flew under the radar, shuttling myself directly beneath this perfect (?) tree. By the time the attractive family made their way to the tree I was able to get a good (3) hacks into the tree’s trunk. “Great minds must think a like,” I smirked and as the WASPy family walked away I gave them the finger. Just because.


So now I have the perfect (?) tree and I have trimmed it with the perfect (?) ornaments, so I will now have a perfect (?) Christmas. This concludes yet another story of how I beat you at that competition you didn’t know you were in. Seasons Greetings!


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Hello Friends, it’s that time of year again where I get drunk nearly every night and hit on you at that party because that sequin top really brings out your eyes.


It’s also time for the 20th Annual New York Cares Coat Drive. As in past years, I’m collecting coats for New York’s needy. So if you live in the (5) boroughs of NYC and have a new or gently used winter coat that you would like to contribute, please drop me a line @ greatness.with.gumption@gmail.com and I will be happy to make arrangements to swing by and pick those up from you! Best part? FREE HUGS!


Thanks in advance for your help supporting this worthy cause and I look forward to hearing from you!


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