13 · The Kids Issue

Like Son, Like Father: Judea Pearl

In the beginning of 2002, Daniel Pearl, a 38-year-old Wall Street Journal reporter on assignment investigating links between Al Qaeda and Pakistani intelligence, was kidnapped and beheaded in Karachi, Pakastan. The brutal nature of the tragedy, the video depicting Daniel’s last minutes that would soon surface on the Internet and his last words “My name...

Urban Kvetch: WebMD.com

WebMD.com So, Mr. WebMD, I had a slight rash on my face, which turned out to be a simple allergic reaction to my moisturizer. But according to you, I had incurable facial tumors, sun poisoning, melanoma and childhood obesity. Thanks so much—where did you get your license to practice medicine, St. Augustine Institute for Hypochondria...

Urban Kvetch: Asian People Who Insist On Doing Karaoke In Their Native Tongues

Asian People Who Insist On Doing Karaoke In Their Native Tongues Do you see me doing a rendition of “Hatikvah”? The whole point of karaoke is to choose a song that everyone’s heard before so we can all experience the song with you. I get self-conscious picking a Cat Stevens song and you’re serenading the...

Urban Kvetch: Your Annoying Plus One

Your Annoying Plus One So you had to invite your new “friend” to come out with the boys. She got belligerently drunk and wouldn’t stop screeching about “chilling” in a recording studio with Lenny Kravitz (“…and then Kenny Loggins called and I was like, ‘Lenny, it’s Kenny!’ Ha ha ha!”), sucking the fun out of...

Urban Kvetch: People Who Claim To Be Afraid Of Clowns

People Who Claim To Be Afraid Of Clowns Here’s the thing: They’re not. They just think that saying they are makes for some sort of childhood-trauma personality accoutrement, fostering the illusion that they’re a tortured soul. But they’re making it up. I don’t care if they’ve managed to convince themselves it’s true—it’s time to lure...

Urban Kvetch: Fax Machines

Fax Machines Why do you insist on forcing me to print out this document and then walk the 11 blocks to Kinko’s to fax it to you? You’re wasting (my) time, (my) energy and (my) resources because you refuse to use this thing we call “the Internet.” Have you heard of it? It sends virtual...

Urban Kvetch: “Entertainment Weekly” Columnist Stephen King

Entertainment Weekly Columnist Stephen King This is worse than John Mayer’s Esquire column. Stephen King has been locked in a log cabin in Maine for the past 40 years writing, like, three books a week. Let him upgrade his black and white 19-inch Zenith and then you can give him the back page to showcase...

Urban Kvetch: Cotton Swabs

Cotton Swabs Forget the generic brand’s common, cotton comb-over—the sound of that extra 40 cents dropping on the counter is music to my wax-filled ears. Using generic cotton swabs is like wiping your ass with sandpaper, so when it comes to wiping my Eustachian tube, it’s only the Q. Don’t give me a hassle; I...

Urban Kvetch: Endangered Stoops

Endangered Stoops With all the first-wave gentrifiers and old neighborhoodies up-in-arms about the changing face of Brooklyn, it’s surprising that nobody has taken issue with the saddest part of new construction in New York’s (arguably) most beautiful borough: destoopification. I wonder if everyone would quiet down a bit if developers spend a little less money...

Urban Kvetch: Crunch

Crunch The transformation of what was once a dank gym on St. Mark’s Place into a lifestyle brand has been embarrassing: an ill-fated magazine (with “musician” Juliette Lewis), idiotic promotions (“Wicked Yoga” offers you the chance to do the downward facing dog next to one of the cast members from the Broadway show) and shameless...

Damned Yankees

In yet another example of America’s heady cultural imperialism, Boston-based entrepreneur Larry Baras is bringing our national pastime to the Holy Land; June 24 will mark the opening day of the Israeli Baseball League (IBL). Will sabras embrace the sport with the same enthusiasm they have Mickey D’s fries and Dunkin’ Donuts’ Munchkins? The answer...

What Are You Looking At, Nerd?

Back in 1983, Andrew Cassese really nailed his audition for the role of Harold Wormser; like his _Revenge of the Nerds_ character, the then-12-year-old actor was a bona-fide spaz. Those buckteeth and prescription eyeglasses were the real thing, he always scored well on exams, and he was heavily into both computers and the Millennium Falcon....