Friday, February 10, 2006

Letter to: Jeep

Here's my letter to Dieter Zetsche, chairman (or whatever) of Daimler-Chrysler, the company that owns Jeep. For the record, I'm sending these from my actual email address with my actual name signed to them. I think that little touch gives my letters a feel of legitimacy. Because I am serious that I would like a hybrid Jeep.

Before I get to the letter, which is not funny -- it's pretty straightforward and represents a sincere request for a product I would someday like to purchase -- except for that I couldn't help writing it in a goofy way, I would like to let the blog reading public know that my letter writing time is available to you as a free service. Post the name of a CEO and his/her business and the product or other thing you would like from that business and I will send said CEO a quick letter.

From: me
Subject: hybrid jeep
Date: February 10, 2006 11:06:28 AM EST

Guten Tag!

I would very much like to buy a Jeep, but the cost of gas is out of control. Plus, I am concerned about the environment? Are we really doing enough to take care of it? So it occurred to me that a hybrid Jeep would be a great car for me. Please make one. I will buy it!


Letter to (first in a series?): Apple

You know what I don't do often enough? Correspond with the CEOs of giant corporations. How are they going to know what I want if I don't make my needs known to them? As such, I've decided to make a project of it. My first letter is below. You'll note it's actually a serious request -- I really really really would like a wireless bluetooth mighty mouse from apple. Better still would be a wireless bluetooth trackball, but that's not likely to happen until I become a major shareholder. Anyway, some of my letters will be serious, others will doubtless devolve into goofiness. Alas, such is my tragic flaw. I can't be serious about anything for too long.

So, here's my first letter:

Subject: bluetooth mighty mouse
Date: February 10, 2006 10:39:21 AM EST

Hi Steve,

I'm in the market for a bluetooth mouse, and it would be swell if Apple made a bluetooth version of the Mighty Mouse. I would buy it if you did. It would go nicely with my wireless Apple keyboard. Don't wait too long, though -- I need a new mouse soon!


Smashing, isn't it? Next up is Jeep once I find out who there CEO is. Also, I have no idea if that's Steve Jobs' real email address. Probably it's not. Probably some Intern or secretary or assistant's assistant is responsible for reading through all the mail that goes there. That's fine. I'll just have to hope that my genius suggestions are rushed up the food chain.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Operation: Motorcyle, part 6

I found an SV650 naked to actually sit on today. I had to drive down to the dealer's warehouse, and skulk around all the garages and ice cream trucks (there were like all these ice cream trucks there -- no idea why) like someone about to commit a felony. But I found the Suzuki warehouse and was ushered inside and shown a mostly-assembled SV650 naked.

Good golly, it was worth the wait. I only had to sit on it for about a second to tell that it was much more comfortable than any of the sport bikes I've tried. In fact, I felt right away like I was ready to ride.

So I'm psyched. I'll be talking to the sales guy this weekend about what he can do on the price. It's an '05 (blue), and this is off-season, and I know they haven't sold a lot of ATVs or snowmobiles since it's been too warm (though I don't get why warm weather would slow ATV sales, but whatever), so I'm hoping he'll come down at least $500. If not, then I might hold out until I can find a better deal on an '05 or have this place order me an '06 in red (which is soooo sexy I could sing songs about it -- big fat slobbery love songs). My only concern right now is that this is the dealer I've been warned adds all sorts of crazy fees to the out the door price. I'm glad to have been alerted to it in advance, and I'm prepared (reluctantly) to walk out the door if they try to pull that with me. But I'm not gonna get all negative just yet. Instead I'm going to sit here and fantasize about cruising around town on an SV650, winking at the ladies and making the men feel like little boys.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Post Secrets

I clicked back over to postsecret just a moment ago to read the new cards. For some reason, reading those cards feels good. Much as I feel like we're messed up for having anything to bitch about at all, it's also nice to know that I/you/we are not the only one(s) walking around with all sorts of garbage in my head.

In Breakfast of Champions, Kurt Vonnegut talks about his need to empty his head of all the crap the world has put in there over the years. He tosses out Nazi flags and women's underwear and leaves them strewn along the sidewalk. In my memoir, I reference this and make a point of doing the same thing.

And it's made me realize that there's something about us -- something that's either a universal part of the human condition, or something that's uniquely American (I'm not sure which) -- that demands we pour our insides out. We lionize memoirists like Dave Eggars and David Sedaris, we tune in to Oprah and Dr. Phil, we blog, and we send postcards to postsecret. We're desperate to share ourselves.

We're desperate for intimacy. Which I guess means that either as humans or as a culture we're failing the interpersonal-connection test. But no amount of blogging or memoir writing or Dr. Phil watching is going to correct the problem. These things are only a band-aid for a wound that we're actually afraid to heal. After all, if we weren't afraid, we'd use our real names when we did this stuff.

I go to absurd lengths to keep myself anonymous on the Internet. My friends who know me in meat space obviously come here knowing who I am, but for everyone else I wear the Mustapha Mond mask. I have a Mustapha Mond email address, and I sign my emails Mr. Mond and I won't post my picture in my profile, and it's all so, should I meet strangers in meat space, they won't have a head start on knowing just how fucked up I am -- even though I know they're just as fucked up as me.

It's the details of someone's fuckedupedness that gives you power over them. And it's only when you look someone in the eye and make an honest effort to share the details of all the misfired gears, blown gaskets, leaky tubes, and syntax errors, that you can achieve true intimacy with someone. And it's terrifying to try and do that. I don't blame people for wanting to keep it all anonymous.

In fact, it's almost like we have no choice but to keep it anonymous. Does anyone who's read A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius actually think they know Dave Eggars? I hope not. As much as Eggars might try to spill his guts onto the page, there is inevitably a filter between the memoirist and his audience that prevents the reader from truly knowing the self of the writer. And the writer knows this barrier exists, and the writer knows that it's the barrier that makes it possible for him to write at all. So, yes, even the memoirist, with his name on the cover and his picture inside the jacket of his book, remains anonymous.

We're all anonymous until we sit across the table from each other and say out loud into each other's ears that our heads are full of Nazi flags and women's underwear, and that's the only time we can achieve true intimacy with each other.

Unfortunately, the world is getting too big for that. And the bigger it gets, the higher we need to crank the volume. Thus we invent media, and the blogosphere, and sky writing, and smoke signals. We must share. We must let the world know that we are in pain, in love, in anything, in the hopes that in some small way our lives will be recognized and shared and made more real through connections with other people. Yet we must do this anonymously because it's too scary to do it any other way.

So, in that tradition, I thought it would be an interesting experiment (and experience) if, in the comments of this post only, people visiting Smooth Verbiage would post anonymously and just say whatever the hell they wanted.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


Yeah, that's an ad at the top of the blog. I thought long and hard about it and decided I need money and every little extra way I can get some is fine with me. (I'm also available as a cheap prostitute, just FYI.)

Yeah. So.

Expect it to get worse before it gets better, too. I'm planning to put up a paypal button so I can beg more blatantly, as well as a link to my amazon wishlist.

The silver lining to all this sleaze is that every cent raised/donated/solicited is going towards grad school. (I'd love to put it towards the motorcycle, but I haven't sunk that low (yet) -- though, now that I think about it, I'm so putting the motorcycle on my wishlist. Ha!)

If anyone has any other ideas for how I can make some extra bucks (tattoo the golden arches on my forehead?), post 'em in the comments.

Oh, and, I think the ads pay on a per-click basis right now, so, if you love me, how about you visit my advertisers.

Hooray, money!

Monday, February 06, 2006


My Harvard application is finished. Howdy-doody. Unfortunately (sort of) it's a lot stronger than my Stanford application; I nailed the essay, and the rest of the format felt like it was really highlight my strengths. The reason I say this is unfortunate is because the weather in Mass. sucks. I mean, would it even make sense to own a motorcycle there? If I'm gonna buy a bike, then I've gotta go to school in Cali. And for a while I felt like Stanford application was as strong as can be. But now... Well, getting accepted to either school would be a thrill, and I certainly wouldn't say no to Harvard (money permitting). In spite of the weather, I'm quite enthused about the possibility of going. The program seems top notch, and I was just reading some stuff by one of their professors and I felt really in sync with her ideas and philosophy. Anyway, there's nothing to do now but wait for the letters.

Sunday, February 05, 2006


I would love to be fellated right now. To relieve stress. My Harvard application is almost done! Ayyyeeee!

And I have to confess, I pussied out on the whole Hogwarts thing (see below). The more I got into my essay, the more I realized I'd really really like to be accepted there and that I shouldn't fuck around about it. I'd like to believe that having a little fun with my application would have endeared me to the application committee, but it's all such a finicky businesses that in the end I decided it's best not to give them an excuse to reject me. Alas. I am a wuss and have capitulated to the play-it-safe-ism of the system. all f-ed up

Sometime around the 3rd, started eating anything I tried to post, including comments responding to comments in older posts, and including a really good post about what books I've been reading, which was fucking genius on the order of sliced bread). So this post is a test to see if is working again.