Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The First Ever Mr. Derivative List Challenge!

So it’s December 30th, and I am in danger of not positng a blog in the entire month of December. I have been trying to write a few different blogs to no avail. Instead of rushing to put something half-ready up, I decided to have a little fun.

With the year winding down, every critic at every news outlet is busy putting out lists of every kind. I wanted to do my own list, but I didn’t want to retread territory that has already been covered (Tim Goodman can do a much better job of telling you why The Wire is the best show to ever be on TV than I can) without giving you: my readers their choice. So instead I came up with the First Ever “Mr. Derivative All-Time List Challenge,” here is how it works:

Below you will see three Top-10 Lists, some traditional, some not so-traditional. There will be no context or analysis, just content. It is up to you, my readers to decide which list will be published and defended by me. Again allow me to clarify, you are voting for an entire list to be published and analyzed, not individual items from the separate lists. You can e-mail your votes to me at jgmosko@gmail.com. Voting is open from today through January 23rd 2009. I will post an analysis of the highest vote getter on January 3oth, 2009.

Without further ado...The Lists

Greatest TV Shows of All-Time

1. The Simpsons
2. The Wire
3. The Shield

4. South Park
5. OZ
6. The Critic

7. Family Guy
8. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
9. Entourage
10. Scrubs

Most Personally Influential Songs

1. Paul Revere by the Beastie Boys
2. Triumph by the Wu-Tang Clan
3. 911 by Wyclef Jean ft. Mary J. Blige
4. Wild Thing by The Troggs
5. Guerilla Radio by Rage Against The Machine
6. Bring the Pain by Method Man
7. Stronger by Kanye West
8. Lost One by Jay-Z
9. 2 of America’s Most Wanted by 2pac and Snoop Dogg
10. Keep Bouncin by Too Short ft. Will I. Am and Snoop Dogg

Best Simpsons Quotes of All Time:

1. "Crisitunity!”
2. "Mmmh...Floorpie!"
3. "....That Dog has a Puffy Tale!”
4."They Taste like....BURNING!”
5. "I am so Smart! SMRT!"
6."You can run...BUT YOU CAN”T GLIDE!”
7. “HEY...There’s a NEW Mexico!”
9. Marge: “Kids can be so cruel.” Bart:“We Can?” Lisa:“OWWW! CUT IT OUT BART!!”
10."C’mon! It’s Time for a Change!”

All right readers, vote early and often. Again, the winning list will be published on January 23rd, 2009.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mr. Derivative On...

Newspaper Editor: "This can't be the real article...right? You use words like 'pasghetti' and 'momatoes', you make several threatening references to the U.N, and in the last paragraph you repeat the words 'Screw Flanders' Over and Over Again"
"Awww...It's hard to reach 500 words"

The Simpsons ep. AABF21: "Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner"

Hello esteemed readers, I think there are like five of you right now, welcome to the latest edition of Mr. Derivative.

For those of you who enjoy my blog, you owe a big debt of gratitude to my sister. This blog wouldn’t happen if it wasn’t for her. Not only was she the inspiration for my blog with her superior cooking/Gabi blog OUT OF THE PANTRY, but she also sends me nudging g-chats every week to remind me to write new entries. Whenever she sends me these I try to blow her off by saying I have writers block; but she doesn’t let me off the hook. She even goes as far as to hold me accountable by giving me ideas for blogs. Her suggestions this week? One was a gender issues blog inspired by a drunken text I sent her (I won’t go into too many details, but the first sentence was “What the F--- is wrong with women?”), the other was a “10 things I would take in an emergency” list inspired by the recent rash of fires in Santa Barbara and LA. Both fantastic ideas, however I have opted instead for a miscellaneous/random blog inspired by my favorite columnist of all time: Bill Simmons.

So without further ado....

Mr. Derivative on.....


I may lose my status as a Jew by saying this, but Annie Hall was the worst movie I had ever seen. Woody Allen is annoying, I hated that surreal talking to the camera crap, and maybe I'm too dumb to get the humor, but is it really funny for Shelly Duvall to say, "Sex with you is a Kafka-esque experience...I mean that as a compliment" ? Because I don't think so.

In current movies, Quantum of Solace: Uh...What? This was by far the worst James Bond movie I have ever seen, if you can even call it a James Bond movie. Where was Q? Where were the cool gadgets? James Bond didn’t even bang the main girl, a lackluster effort indeed. Daniel Craig’s previous performance of Bond as more sociopathy, less suave was fantastic. However this time around he decided that by not saying anything, looking intense, and killing people, it was the same thing, it most certainly was not.

As for the villain Dominc Greene (Worst Bond villain name ever), I’ll let my friend David Cygielman take this one...

“The villian wasn’t even that bad, he was just a shady businessman. What he was doing was very unethical, but it wasn’t supervillian evil, not worth James Bond killing 40 people. Bond was kind of a dick in this one.”

The only redeeming part of this one was the theme song, Another Way to Die by Jack White and Alicia Keys. Which brings us to....


Dear DJ Khaled,

I really enjoy your music. Now please shut the f--- up and let me listen to my song.

Dear Kanye West,

Love Lockdown was awesome, but you are not so famous that you can rerecord the song 11 times and call it 808'S and Heartbreak. Bad form Kanye, Bad form.

I defy you, no matter how bad your day is, to ever listen to Ini Kamooze’s Hotsteppa, and not feel better about life.

Rape Me
by Nirvana has my favorite guitar intro of all time. That intro is just NASTY!

Congratulations to Leather by Tori Amos for getting a second mention in a Mr. Derivative Column. I was pretty drunk at the time, but I'm pretty sure it's a great song to make out to.

I cannot get enough of this song.

I’ve decided that Lil’ Wayne can do whatever he wants. If Lil’ Wayne held a press conference tomorrow announcing that he short sold the entire Dow Jones and used the profits to fund Al-Qaeda, but then started freestyling, I’d forgive him, all of America would forgive him.


This has been a year of redemption for some long running television shows. Both Saturday Night Live and The Simpsons have been showing signs of age lately. It’s hard to blame them, when a show runs for multiple decades its hard to find new material. But this year both show’s have been on point.

Saturday Night Live gained alot from the election, mainly with Tina Fey’s hilarious impression of Sarah Palin. However the non-topical stuff has been great too. In a recent episode, Mad Men’s Jon Hamm hosted and was uproariously funny. Hamm played himself; his Mad Men character Don Draper...twice; JFK; 60’s actor James Mason; and Pat Finger, a man running for city council in perhaps the worst city a man with that name could choose to run in. If you are not peeing your pants in laughter by the end of that list clip, than you have no sense of humor.

The decline of The Simpsons has been particularly upsetting to me as it is one of my favorite shows. It had been on so long that the show had begun to run out of ideas and the characters had become parodies of themselves. However this season has been on par with the show’s best. This year’s Halloween special, once a highlight but as of late a bore, was one of the best episodes I’d ever seen. The cold opening where Homer attempts to vote for Obama on a crooked voting machine was gold. Hearing Homer Simpson scream “C’mon It’s time for a change!” was worth the price of admission alone.

One of my new favorite shows, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia has been experiencing the issues that The Simpsons was having. After starting strong, it seems that this year they have been trying too hard. However, this week’s season finale “The Nightman Cometh”, where they make full-scale musical based on the hilarious "Nightman" and "Dayman" songs of last year, looks promising.

If I could have a threeway with any two characters from current TV shows; I would pick Tara from True Blood (played by Rutina Wesley) and Jane Holloway from Mad Men (played by Christina Hendricks). However, from watching the show, I think Jane is slightly racist and wouldn’t go for it, but a man can dream.


The next time I have girl problems I am going to make my Facebook status say “Jeremy is being felt bad for by Jay-Z”.

My sister sent me a quote today from J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye that she felt described my taste in women. I’m not going to print the quote, other than the fact that it contained the phrase “Pain in the ass”. Ladies and Gentlemen, My Sister!


I was working on a section where I was going to recount the time my friend Aaron Schiff ordering a double shot of Jack on my tab before I could close out and weighing 160lbs, it got him so drunk that he went home by himself at 11:00pm. However my recollection of the night is pretty hazy myself, so I can’t make fun of him as well as I’d hoped to. But I told Schiff I was going to mention him in this blog, so I will just say, if Zach Morris was skinny, Jewish, thinning hair, and had game except for when he actually likes a girl, he would be Aaron Schiff. Love ya buddy!


Since a good 90% of my blog is dedicated to ripping off Bill Simmons, I want to do a "mailbag" issue sometime down the line. Please email me questions/comments/insults to jgmosko@gmail.com to contribute a question. Unless you are my Mom, then don’t bother, because I’m not printing anything you send me. Love ya Mom!

Take care esteemed readers, until next time...

Screw Flanders.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Untitled Obama Blog

“Yes We Can”

“It’s Time for a Change”

Obama Campaign Slogans

“Well, Let’s see ya do it!”
Uncle Jack, Gallipoli (1981)

Well it happened, Obama won and it feels so good. To bring out a cliche, my generation is always going to remember where they were on this day.

I am going to remember Ese calling me, of course quoting Muhammed Ali, screaming “We Shook up the World! We Shook up the World!”

I am going to remember my Mom calling me from Grant Park, holding the phone up saying, “I’m here with Barry, Jeremy. Barry is talking to Me!”

I’m going to remember texts from Gabi, Adam, Josh and Hali.

I’m going to remember my Facebook status on election day (Jeremy Barack’s with Obama but he ain’t no politician---If you don’t know it listen to Jockin' Jay-Z).

And I’m going to remember my status once he won (Tupac was wrong, we ARE ready---If you don’t know listen to Changes).

I’m going to remember thinking “Oh My God, I have to see what Fox News is doing” and flipping over to see them speaking about the impact that had been made. Which was the classy thing to do...but I couldn’t help but feel it was a tad disingenuous.

I'm going to remember, despite the joy of the night, being shocked and disappointed in California voters over Prop 8. Really?!?!?

I’m going to remember how classy McCain was in defeat; his class as cheesy as it sounds helped create a feeling that it was the UNITED States of America.

I’m going to remember the feeling I got during THAT SPEECH.

About a month and a half ago, I was in Washington D.C. for work. While I was there I visited my cousin Christine. We had just gotten coffee, iced coffee considering the mind-numbing humidity we were experiencing, and I saw a man selling T-Shirts on the corner with images of Martin Luther King Jr. and Barack Obama on them, my reaction at the time was..."That seems a BIT pre-mature."

Well tonight, during THAT SPEECH, the one thought I couldn’t get out of my head was, “This is how it must have felt to see Martin Luther King Jr.”

Which made me happy and afraid. I got a lot of scary, morbid thoughts as an aftermath of that thought, but I am not going to go into them.

Instead I am going to focus how tonight, Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) appeared to be everything we want in the aftermath of the last 8 years. He was excited, but not exuberant. He was aware of the historical impact he had made, yet focused on the challenges that lie ahead. He was a family man, a man of the people, but most of all he was Presidential. He had the air of a man who knew he had a huge challenge ahead of him, but knew that he could get it done because of who he was. If I would compare Obama’s election to a sports event, I am praying for my generation and future generations that it is Kevin Garnett getting traded to the Boston Celtics. If KG can get the ‘Celts a ring, than I hope to G-d that Obama can bring America back to the country I grew up in during the Clinton Years, as said in my last attempt at a political blog, when life was simple and cool.

I am confident in Obama: a dynamic speaker, fresh ideas, and ready and willing to shake things up, I am putting my faith in him based on that.

I have a friend who is a voracious Republican, who frankly paid more attention during our Poli-Sci classes than me, who is very anti-Obama. He thinks Obama’s going to destroy the economy by raising corporate taxes and that his tax program is a redistribution of wealth. That Obama is too inexperienced to negotiate with our enemies, that an early pull-out from Iraq will make it fall to Iran. As a Poli-Sci student, I see the theoretical place he is coming from. However, I also believe that theories don’t always translate to real life. That though I didn’t go to Professor Crouch’s Econ class enough to combat his arguments, that the system that his arguments are based on has to have failed, otherwise we wouldn’t be in this mess. That the old way wasn’t working, so it’s on us to do what we got to do...to survive.

He is probably gong to scoff at that paragraph if and when he reads it.

But it doesn’t matter, because It’s Time for a Change, Yes We Can, and....


Tuesday, October 28, 2008


“ ‘Remember when...’ is the lowest form of conversation” Tony Soprano

It’s been almost a month since I have posted my last blog. Not for lack of effort; I have sat down five or six times and attempted to write a music blog. I have tried different styles: an analysis of the “Recently Added” playlist on my iPod as an insight to my soul; my love letter to Hip Hop; my confession of unlikely songs that I listen to (notable mentions were Cher’s “Gypsies, Tramps, and Thieves” and Tori Amos’ “Leather”); I even watched Almost Famous for inspiration. But lord help me, none of them were very good.

Meanwhile my sister has outperformed me by writing 5 blogs about such interesting topics as text message etiquette, hostile bread baking, her friend Katie, light-bulbs and ex’s, and her various phases (For those who read that blog, I would like to state for the record that I had a better name for her “angry female singer-songwriter phase” I called it the “Anorexic Hippie Chick Rock Phase”, and whether it was the Anorexic Fiona Apple or the Curvaceous Jewel, if it was chick rock it was lumped in the category).

Either way, I need to step my game up and write a blog.

Gabi suggested I use a childhood memory to spark inspiration. Which got me thinking about all of the memories I have created. These are the PG-13 edition of some of the best memories I’ve ever had.

There was the most I’ve ever tortured my sister; which was actually accidental. I was five years old, and we were on vacation in Lake Tahoe. In the middle of the night I had to pee really badly. I got up in the dark and tried to navigate through the first hotel room I’ve ever been in. After five minutes, my bladder began to win the battle, so I opened the first door I found and let it go. That door happened to not be the bathroom, but the closet containing my sister’s suitcase. The rest of the trip was less than pleasant for her.

There was my first bad experience with alcohol. I went to my friend Myk’s house on a saturday night when I was 16 years old. Myk’s mom Kathy was out; not out of town, simply out. Myk, Adam, Eli and I deemed this to be the perfect opportunity to consume a handle of Ancient Age whiskey along with the pizza that Kathy bought us. Around 10:30 Kathy returned to us playing Madden 2001 and trying to act sober, which we pulled off until the alcohol kicked in for me. I was on the top bunk about to throw up and I couldn’t find anywhere to let it go, so I let it go on the first place I could find (I’m sensing a theme here)...on Eli’s Head. However, being the clever boys we are, we were able to convince Kathy that we hadn’t been drinking, that I was lactose intolerant and had a bad reaction to eating too much pizza. Whenever I went to Myk’s house from then on, Kathy warned me not to overeat every time we got pizza.

Trying to find a moment alone with Shan during a party at Oceana's house, only to have my friend Mike walk in, laugh, and announce to the party loudly “Jeremy’s getting his ***** S*****!!!!!!”.

The Friday Morning Club and sending my mom the infamous text.

Chasing Adam around Oceana’s house yelling “I got it in my holster!” only until Jolinda saw us and said “You better put it back!”

An interesting breath holding contest in Myk’s hot tub.

LP3...If you want to know what that is, ask me, it's not fit for print.

Shan’s parents finding out we were having sex, and taking me out to Applebee’s and surprising me by saying, “We think you’re too young, but don’t worry we’ll raise the baby while you are at college.”

Breaking up with Shan a week later.

Going to Orientation for college, and my mom picking me up on DP while disposing of a bowl of my own vomit.

Discovering how easy girls at UCSB are with the douchiest line I’ve ever uttered: “Hey baby do you want to bake a pie for me?” Response: “Ohhhh my god! I am such a good cook!”

Moving in with a skinny, long-haired kid from the Valley named Aaron Schiff.

Irish Girls.

Tijiuana with the Rugby Team.

Rosarito with the Rugby Team.

Tijuana with Ese and Josh.

Rosarito with the Frat.

Ese begging me to go with him to the Neverland Ranch following the Michael Jackson verdict.

Votto the Pizza thief: "Do I even know YOU?"

One word: Cowden.

Keefer’s 21st birthday. And the subsequent drunken, all-male shirtless dance party that resulted.

Working at Michael Jordan’s Flight School, and how it changed my life.

Graduating College, yet having one last gasp by living in the frat house with all of the freshman.

While working for a touchy-feely non-profit in college, I was praised by my boss Jordan for my ability to create memories. I didn’t fully grasp it at the time, but looking back I have had some incredible memories with my friends. The Tony Soprano quote is the sentiment of a man who is coming to grips with the fact that he has peaked. Well to quote Dennis Reynolds “I haven’t even begun to peak”. Maybe I’ll feel different when I get that age, but for now I am going to look back fondly at all my memories, and use them as inspiration, along with my friends, and usually some Patron shots, to create new and better ones.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Because that's what fans do....

This weekend was by far the best weekend of my life.

A lot of S’s in my weekend.

My weekend contained: Super Mario Kart live on the Streets of San Francisco, my friend June’s boyfriend Sean, my Sister, a Sista, Seagram's 7 Swigged Straight out of the bottle by my mother, the Simpson’s arcade game, the Simpson’s Season premiere, Strawberry cake, and most significantly Sports.

(Also not fitting the alliteration Credit Card Roulette, Pork Chops, the Dirty Bird, and Burn Before Reading).

This weekend, I got to go see my two favorite sports teams, the San Francisco Giants and the Oakland Raiders with two of my favorite people in the world my Dad and my best friend Adam.

If you can’t tell where this is going, this blog is going to be me doing my best impression of Bill Simmons before Boston started winning every damn sport there ever was. But as this is my writing, its going to be about the Bay Area.

Yes, this was pretty much a perfect weekend. Except for one thing.

My two favorite sports teams lost in possibly the most painful way ever.

The Giants game was what the weekend was scheduled around. Ever since I was a kid, going to Giants games have been a bonding experience my dad and me. When I was young we’d brave the cold at Candlestick Point whenever he got tickets and I’d watch Will Clark and Glenallen Hill hit dingers. I have fond memories of Matt Williams starting a fight after swinging on an 3-0 pitch making it the 2nd year in a row that there was a bench clearing brawl at “Til There’s a Cure Day”. Then, once Pac Bell/SBC/AT &T Park opened, he got season tickets and there was nothing I looked forward to more than watching games, heckling visiting batters and stuffing my face with Shaboygen Brats, Krispy Kremes, and root beer or once I turned 21, over-priced cups of Gordon Biersch. I even went to Game 4 of the 2002 World Series, an exciting win before the epic collapse.

So why was this Giants loss so painful?

The Giants lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers, 2-1. Matt Cain pitched a good game, but he was given terrible run support. As someone who grew up during the Barry Bonds Era (and I support him 100 % but that’s another blog), zero run support was never in our vocabulary. As long as Bonds was in the lineup, we knew that run support was coming. Say what you want about steroids, watching a player like Barry Bonds was an exciting experience that we in the Bay Area are lucky to have experienced. Seeing the Giants as a limp offensive team is like seeing Muhammed Ali get knocked out by Larry Holmes, sad and confusing.

That wasn’t the saddest thing though.

It was sad because it didn’t feel like a Giants game. I felt like I was at a Dodgers Game.

The crowd was 1 Dodgers fan for every 2 Giants fans but they were cheering like it was a 5 -1 Dodgers to Giants fan ratio. I was bombarded with chants of “Let’s Go Dodgers” and it made me sick. When I heard this I would boo and eventually a weak “Beat LA” chant would get going, but it was ineffective. The Dodger’s fans dominated the crowd and it was disgusting because they came into our house and they got away with it.

Afterwards, my dad has a simple but sad explanation for it:

“The team hasn’t been performing, and the fans are deflated and less enthusiastic because of it.”

That may be true. But c’mon Bay Area, where is the swagger? No matter how the team is performing, that is your team! You have got to go hard for your team when you are in the stadium. ESPECIALLY WHEN IT'S A RIVAL GAME!!!!! It’s just a point of pride.

This was not the issue at the Raiders game. Say what you want about the Raider Nation. You will never be able to criticize them for being a meek crowd. The Raider’s fans were going nuts throughout the entire game, and it was awesome.

No, what happened this week was the same thing that happened last week. The Raider’s lost, and they lost in the most heartbreaking way because they made me think they were going to win.

The Raiders defense was absolutely dominant...for 3 quarters.

They chewed up the clock, played the field position game, and were able to make up for their lack of any semblance of a passing game....for 3 quarters.

They made me think that they had corrected mistakes of the week before and there was some chance that they could be better this year.

Then the 4th quarter started...and it just all went to hell.

The defense caved

They let LT run like he was LT.

And the offense still sucked.

And they lost 18-28.

As we filed out of the Stadium, I let out a deep sigh, and looked so noticably sad, that a couple I don’t know came up to me.

Man: “Man, you took that hard.”

Me: “I made the classic mistake, I thought it might be different this time”

Man: “Don’t worry brotha, it will get better. It was nice having Lane Kiffin as our coach”.

As this guy correctly predicted, Al Davis did the Al Davis thing, and he fired Lane Kiffin today. And I am just sick. Al Davis is singlehandedly fucking up the team and I think it trickles down.

The cycle goes like this:

Al Davis is old. Super old. And he wants to “Just Win, Baby” before he dies. Understandable. He also has dated ideas about how the game is played, again understandable because he is old as fuck.

So he spends too much money on one-dimensional players and the team sucks. The team then gets high draft picks, who have potential, but he doesn’t let them develop and they burn out. He then pressures everyone, starters, coaches, waterboys, and no one wants to play for the organization. So we continue to suck.

As we were walking out, buzzed from over-priced stadium beer, providing analysis of the Raider's situation to each other in a manner similar to the previous paragraph only in a more spiteful and profane manner. Adam said something a little bit inspiring.

“The Raider Nation will never die.”

This served as a stunning counterpoint to my experience at the Giants game. Both of these games were rivalry games, which despite the futility of both teams should have mattered. It did for the Raiders, it didn’t for the Giants. And it was disheartening.

It doesn’t matter though. No matter how bad these teams get. I will still be there, stuffing my face, over-paying, and most of all enjoying my team with the ones I love.

Because that is what fans do.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Of South Park, Sorority Soccer, and Sandra Dee...That's Right ELECTION 08!

Note: I did not want to post this blog as a follow up to my intro. I personally feel that doing a political blog is not the tone I want to set. However, I have not posted anything in a couple days and of all the pieces I was working on, this was the most ready to publish...so here it goes.

The Political Blog

“Do you remember when life used to be simple and cool?”
Kyle-South Park, Osama Bin Laden has Farty Pants, 11/7/2001

I’m loathe to do a political blog. I don’t like politics. I was a Political Science major and since graduation I have become more and more turned off by politics. Part of it is that I don’t like the nature of the beast. I took a simulated Congress class during my Junior year of college and it successfully killed any interest I had in the subject: 55 grade-grubbing Poli-Sci Majors back-stabbing each other in a simulated environment is bad (so bad that I never went to class, even though I was “Dick Cheney” and held the tie-breaking vote in the "Senate", I was able to squeak by with an undeserved C- because I coached my TA’s team in our sorority soccer tournament, and was hooking up with her little sister); a situation where the stakes are real and the participants have more invested in their actions than a grade is much worse (I want to insert a “maybe Cheney is hooking up with his TA’s little sister” joke here...but that’s just too disturbing). Part of it is the role the media plays in the current political climate. Fox News is obviously the gold standard in Propaganda/Blustering/Opinion perpetrated as news; but the other channels aren’t much better. I was stuck in the Atlanta airport recently at 5:00 AM, nothing was open. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t buy anything, I coudn’t even get drunk, so obviously I was very irritated. I tried sleeping, but I couldn’t. Why not? Because CNN was blasting full volume in the terminal and the blither that was coming out of the TV was more than I could bear. The first time its on, its interesting to hear about Sarah Palin’s first interview...when its being replayed for the 502nd time and being analyzed to death by a pair of “Strategists” whose only strategy is to agree with party lines...I don’t care anymore.

But sadly the election is a big deal right now, so to stay relevant I am going to cover it.

The quote at the top of the page is a reference to the state of the world pre-9/11. As a 16 year old when it happened, this quote really summed up my thinking. During the Clinton years, everything did seem simple and cool. Hell, the Clinton years just were more fun. All in all, the events of 9/11 weren’t the Republican’s fault, but pretty much everything else since then is.

The Democrats are at fault too. They spend more time backbiting each other like a couple sorority girls who blew each others formal dates then they do seeing the long game of how to run a campaign. Barack Obama is the most electable Democrat of this century. If he doesn’t get elected its Hillary’s fault.

Or it would be....if we were a Nation who made our political decisions based on rhetoric, party lines and the media. Oh you say that IS how we make our political decisions?

That is an understandable guess. We definitely don’t make our political decisions based on rational thought, theoretical analysis, and general common sense.

No. There is a simple formula to how we elect our leaders.

We elect the “Bad Boy”.

We are a nation of sheltered, Sandra Dees who can’t wait to surrender our virginity to the first guy who comes along with long hair, a motorcycle and keeps us out past our curfew. Often, we choose these types instead of our innocuous, platonic, male “BFF”...candidates usually more qualified to govern.

I believe that every election since 1980 has been decided by this reasoning. See my analysis below. In case you don’t know how these elections turned out, the winner is in BOLD.

1980 Ronald Reagan vs. Jimmy Carter: How can Ronald Reagan, the oldest president ever elected be considered a bad boy? I admit it's a bit of a stretch. But think about it. Carter the aww shucks, intellectual Georgia peanut-farmer vs. Reagan, a former actor. Even though Reagan was 148 when he ran against Carter. His Hollywood background gives him some Bad Boy cred. The Vinnie Chase of the 1950’s. We can just imagine him sweet-talking some innocent extras back to his love trailer during his guest appearance on “Wagon Train”. Plus we all now Carter was a veritable altar boy.

1984: Ronald Reagan vs. Walter Mondale: Mondale was from Minnesota, pitting Reagan against a nice Mid-Western boy instead of a nice Southern boy only increases his Bad Boy appeal, especially when you consider that at this point Reagan had also successfully ended a hostage crisis. Reagan goes from Vinnie Chase to Colin Farrell back when he was having sex with a barely legal Lindsay Lohan in elevators while the paparazzi watched.

1988: George Bush (I) vs. Michael Dukakis: George Bush, a former fighter pilot vs. Michael Dukakis...a short Greek man. I was 3 years old during this election so all I know about Dukakis is that he was short and Greek (as mentioned previously) and that Jon Lovitz plays him on Saturday Night Live. A fighter pilot definitely is more bad ass than Jon Lovitz.

1992: George Bush (I) vs. Bill Clinton: This was the first election where I had any idea what was going on. I remember my mother saying “Bush is the president, Perot’s a Billionaire, and poor Bill Clinton has to play his saxophone to get attention!” Well Bill Clinton in shades on Arsenio playing that sax gave him bad boy cred that money or experience can’t buy. He also carried his bad boy cred into office...ask Jennifer Flowers, Paula Jones...that underage waitress at the BBQ place he impregnated according to Primary Colors...oh that was a movie with John Travolta? Anyway...

1996: Bill Clinton vs. Bob Dole: Bob Dole endorsed Viagra...Bill Clinton got freaky in the oval office while talking to Diplomats on the phone. I know both of these happened AFTER the 1996 election, but it illustrates my point nicely.

2000: George W. Bush vs. Al Gore: Drunken Frat Dude who owns a baseball team vs.well...Al Gore

2004: George W. Bush vs. John Kerry: Kerry = Gore 2.0...same boring Democrat...New exciting way to lose....

So given our predilection for Bad Boys what does the 2008 election hold?

Well...given his “Change we Can Believe in” campaign....its hard to paint Obama as a bad boy. His campaign would like to see him as a bad boy in the traditional Washington scene, but that’s not the kind of Bad Boy we are talking about. Any mother would love it if their daughter brought home Obama . As for McCain, well, mothers would be upset if their daughter brought home McCain but only as far as being upset that their daughter brought home a man in his 60’s.

This one may go down to the VP’s. I only pay lip service to politics, which means that I don’t pay enough attention to know anything about Joe Biden...which is probably indicative of his lack of a bad boy quotient. Then there is Sarah Palin...the under-qualified, cougarish, self-proclaimed hockey mom from Alaska, with a pregnant underage daughter...

Oh Fuck.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


If you are reading this, you have discovered my blog. Welcome. Given that this is my first blog I am willing to bet that we know each other. At this early stage in my blogging career, I doubt that this Blogspot address that I just made up will get much traffic. Therefore my readers can be lumped into one of two categories.

A. A friend of mine on Facebook who saw this when I posted the link in a shameless attempt to create readership.

B. My Mother, who will no doubt be chastising me for the many grammatical errors in this blog.

Note: My Mother actually has Facebook, but she will not see the link because we are not Facebook friends. I love my mother with all my heart, she did a great job raising my sister and I while juggling a healthy marriage and a career. She made me the person I am today. However I refuse on principle to be Facebook friends with her. Being Facebook friends with your mom is the 21st century equivalent of saying "But my mom says I'm Cool!"

So I decided to submit my entry to the already oversaturated blog market, frankly because I wanted to and as I used to say entirely too often when I was 17:

“I do what I want”.

So what is the point of this blog’s existence? What can people find at my blog that they can’t find anywhere else? Well, before I tell you what you will find, I will tell you what you won’t find.
  • MATH: To anyone who google searched “derivative” to find a website about calculus so that you and your little math buddies can talk about equations, and variables and theorems and all that other stuff that I don’t care about, try again. I don’t like math and I don’t like people who like math. I used to be good at math, until sixth grade when the problems stopped being “6x8=48” and they started being “Why does 6x8=48?”...I don’t know, I don’t care, leave me alone. Also, in sixth grade Mrs. Kiraly gave me a Check-Minus on my math homework instead of the Check I had obviously earned, because I forgot to write my name in the upper right-hand corner, after that I just kind of checked out when it came to Math...so long story short no math at my blog. Apologies to Good Will Hunting.
  • ANGST: This is not going to be a blog where I whine to you about issues in my life or tell you about some slight that one of my friends paid me. That is a waste of my keystrokes and your reading. If you want angst watch the new 90210 or read someone’s MySpace Blog, that should give you your fill.
  • ANALYSIS BASED ON EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE. This blog is going to be a hobby of mine. Everything I say will be my opinion. So I’m kind of like Cable news, except I admit it. Please don’t be that douchebag that reads something I write and says “Well actually according to the most recent Gallup Poll...”, as I said about math, I don’t care, leave me alone.

So....what will you find at mrderivative.blogspot.com?

You will find my musings and ramblings on a variety of topics...Pop Culture, Sports, Politics...maybe even Sex. I feel like most writers can write intelligently about sex and I would like to someday...but I won’t do it until I have the emotional maturity to not have it sound like a recap of previous conquests.

I will usually write about whatever I feel like writing about when the urge to blog strikes, but this Blog will have several recurring features:

  • Lists: You will often see features where I quantify Movies, Songs, Politicians, etc...based on a concept or idea. Not groundbreaking work, I know, but a feature I feel like doing. Concepts will range from traditional lists like “Top 10 Guilty Pleasure Songs” to lists that are a little more outside the box such as “The Ridiculous List” a list of songs, events, fads or people that I just find plain ridiculous.
  • “My Friends are Idiots”: Most of my friends are young, college-educated, upwardly mobile professionals, and great people who I’m lucky to have in my life. That being said, they do or say some of the dumbest shit I have ever experienced in my life. This will be a recurring section following these escapades.
  • Wayyyyyy Too Many ‘Simpsons’ references: This won’t be a feature, but a trend you will notice in my writing. Ever since I was young, I have loved “The Simpsons”. I own all the episodes on DVD that have been released and have watched all of them with commentary. It’s a good thing that I played Varsity sports in high school and college and have been laid, because if I hadn’t, the fact that I have a blog where I quote the Simpsons too much is highly symptomatic of geekdom.

In closing, I would like to explain the name of this blog, Mr. Derivative. Those who know me would likely expect “Mosko” to appear somewhere in there...but alas no. I named it Mr. Derivative because....

It is what my sister would call me when I’d copy her. She has a terrific blog, outofthepantry.blogspot.com. Read it, its better than mine.

A lot of my writing style and content is just an inferior rip-off of my favorite columnist, Bill Simmons aka ESPN’s “The Sports Guy”, read it here: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/simmons/index

I really don’t offer anything that hasn’t been offered up in a blog before...so its derivative...but its my version so I gave it a surname...so that’s Mr. Derivative to you.

So if you are interested you can stay tuned for my next blog or turn to another channel....

(Checks earpiece, listens to producer)

Do not turn to another channel. (Simpsons Reference)