Michael B. Duff

Lubbock's answer to a question no one asked

Archive for the ‘Humor’ Category

Some impressions from Lost, Season 1

I just started Lost Season 1 this week. Last night was the episode where they confronted Ethan. Here’s a quick summary:

JACK: Okay Claire, we need you to walk out into the jungle alone so the creepy madman can capture you again.

CLAIRE: I’m Australian! I’m having a baby!

JACK: I’m gonna take that as a yes. Now Locke and I are going to retrieve the guns that we really should have used the first time. Hey Sawyer, have a gun!

SAWYER: Already got one. Got all kinds of things back here — food, guns, three generators… Come back for lunch and I’ll have a complete Sizzler buffet.

JACK: Whatever. Just come with us.


WALT is trapped in an improvised shelter by the POLAR BEAR.

POLAR BEAR: Finally, some screen time. Roar! Slaver! Bite! Slash!

WALT: *cower*

MICHAEL: We’re coming son! Locke and I just have to navigate this improvised obstacle course!

POLAR BEAR: *reading script* What? Me again? ROAR!

WALT: Stay away from my dad! *stab*

POLAR BEAR: I am the Animal Incarnation of Fear, kid. You can’t just *stab* me!

MICHAEL: Stay away from my boy! *stab*

POLAR BEAR: What did I just say? Screw this, I’m gonna go try and eat the French chick again.


CLAIRE: I’m Australian! I’m having a baby!

CHARLIE: I won’t let anyone hurt you. Your total dependence and lack of personality feels like reciprocal love to me.

CLAIRE: I’m Australian! I’m having a baby! Wait…I remember… Hospital gowns and bright lights, an army of men chanting “Aaron!” as they march to war…

JACK: Oh lord, not again. Can somebody reset Claire?

CHARLIE presses a button on the back of Claire’s neck.

CLAIRE: I’m Australian! I’m having a baby!

JACK: Okay, reverse-ambush time. GO!

ETHAN: Do you like my creepy makeup?

JACK tackles ETHAN

ETHAN: I have the strength of five men but I am overcome by your Righteous Doctor Fighting Skills.

LOCKE: Jack’s got him!

ETHAN: Hey Locke, what’s up? It’s me, Ethan. Dharma company picnic, 1976? Me and Randall Flagg won the sack race?

SAWYER: You’re busted, pal. Hey Sayid, you got any bamboo shoots left?

ETHAN: Curses! Captured by the enemy! I’ll have no choice but to reveal all my evil plans, laying out cruicial plot points for the next five…

CHARLIE: Blam! Blam! Blam! Blam! Blam! Blam!

ETHAN: Ugh! Six bullets to the chest! My secret supervillain weakness! I die!

JACK: Charlie, what the hell?

CHARLIE: Television is a rough business, Jack. One premature plot reveal and I’m back to playing Victorian Thug #3 on Doctor Who.

KATE: I don’t have any lines in this scene. I’m just here to provide an unrealistic standard of female beauty. Oops, my t-shirt is stretching across my chest again! Why does that keep happening?

ABRAMS: Cut! I love this job.

Written by Michael B. Duff

May 20, 2009 at 10:15

Posted in Humor, TV

Further proof that I am old

My friends and I made an unfortunate choice for lunch today. We decided to eat in a place that was across from Lubbock High.

We didn’t notice the proximity when we first sat down, but as we were waiting for our order, the giant bells rang and a couple hundred teenagers came pouring out of the building.

Within a couple minutes, the dining room was full of teenagers and my friends and I ended up trapped, a lonely Circle of Old in the middle of the room.

I want to stress that the kids didn’t do anything to irritate us. They weren’t screaming or throwing things or being rude. Just the sheer weight of numbers made us uncomfortable. I was torn between a desire to be 16 again, with no responsibilities beyond sitting in classrooms all day and no worries beyond whether or not I still had my lunch money, and a strange curiosity about the kids themselves.

They didn’t look like “thugs” or “gansters.” Nobody was dressed wildly or indecently. They were just kids, in jeans and baggy t-shirts. If anything, they looked more respectable than we did in the ’80s, simply because they were wearing darker colors.

I couldn’t really spot the nerds, although one girl did have a Harry Potter lunch box. That endeared me to her, somehow, and to the whole generation, to know that someone could carry a Harry Potter lunch box to high school and not get mocked for it.

People weren’t quite as forgiving of my Return of the Jedi lunchbox in 1986.

So there we were, three grown men with jobs and homes and kids of our own, and when the teenagers invaded…we ran away.

I wish I could spin this as some kind of judicious retreat, but the fact is, we ran. We grabbed our food and ran like hell, looking over our shoulders in case the kids decided to attack.

We ended up eating lunch on the benches outside the A-J, scarfing down food as our plates tried to blow away. All because we couldn’t stand to sit in a dining room with 30 harmless teenagers.

I’m sure being 16 sucks, and if I had it to do over again I’d hate it as much as I did the first time, but watching the kids sit and talk and joke around with each other today, I missed it, just a little, and wished there was a way to tell them how lucky they are.

Written by Michael B. Duff

May 19, 2009 at 13:28

Posted in Humor

Transcript of Live Tweets from The Shorty Awards

Live video from Shorty Awards starts in 40 minutes, according to my rudimentary grasp of time zones and basic math. http://shortyawards.com/

Wacky Internet fun time starts now! http://blogs.lubbockonline….

The most prolific Tweeters in the world will be in one room tonight, trying to route their collective genius through one cell tower. #shorty

Got called, “the Joan Rivers of the Shorty awards” yesterday. I have heels and a wig, just need gold lame dress and old lady pearls. #shorty

Apparently the venue is floating on water? Did they remember the giant Styrofoam whale? #shorty

Join me for live interview with @peggyolson after the show. #shorty

Wonder who picked the music here. Last time I heard music like this, Orson Wells broke in for an alien invasion. #shorty

As pre-shows go, I think I prefer the HuffPo inauguration chaos. Geeks in black t-shirts running around with AV equipment. #shorty

Muzak is Frank Sinatra’s My Way. Is this really the tone we’re going for? #shorty

My Way summarized in 140 char: Life rocked. Dead now. Have you married Ava Gardener yet? Get busy! #shorty

So, the revolution won’t be televised, but there will be a band. #shorty

Just think, in 5 years this’ll be the Honda/Snapple Shorty Awards and the video will be obscured by a giant Chili’s banner. #shorty

I wonder if the Mad Men will get in a fight with Tweeters from other shows? Betty could totally take that tramp from @gossipgirl #shorty

@EHolmesWSJ “@PeggyOlson wearing fishnets and red pumps” I probably owe WSJ a royalty for quoting that. #shorty

Song topics include: death, murder, Sinatra and SATAN. For a finale, the Devil will challenge @charlestrippy for a gold guitar. #shorty

Massive props to band for using phrase “corral of glory” I think I have that on VHS. #shorty

Tonight’s “Music to sell your soul by” provided by @tinpanband #shorty

@socialmediagods have quote of the show so far, “Do you want us to make a benediction to kick off your little show?”

I just heard that @peggyolson has 10 people helping with her “big reveal.” What is she revealing that takes 10 people to lift? #shorty

That’s what I came to see. Young men in ties gesturing frantically to the band. #shorty

I think Greg taught me Political Science in 8th Grade. #shorty

“The 10 Commandments are ten Tweets.” Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s follower count. #shorty

Shorty Awards sponsored by Pepsi and the Knight Foundation. #shorty

@ricksanchezcnn is on screen now, so if he tweets in the next two minutes, it’s his assistant. #shorty

“The idea that you can mix old media with new media is pretty crazy.” Reference to “old suits” at CNN. Cough. #shorty

“You are my assignment editors, you are my focus group, you are my friends.”

Nice touch with the failwhale in the skit. #shorty

@ricksanchezcnn is adding class and professionalism to the proceedings. #shorty

He loves to remind people “he’s a Miami guy.” Did it 5 times during each Imus appearance. #shorty

The phrase, “Journalist who gets it” makes my eyes narrow. #shorty

Let’s get ready to Twumble! #shorty

Quick, how many of these people will be drunk? #shorty

Oh lord, first acceptance speech with a URL in it. #shorty

And here’s Peggy! @peggyolson #shorty With AMC Director of Online Media presenting

That’s Carrie Bugbee, the “real person” behind @peggyolson. I’ll be chatting with Carrie after the awards. #shorty

MC Hammer joins the party. Lot of energy in the room. Could perhaps use a bit more on stage. #shorty

Using Twitter for marketing? After these awards, you’ll wonder if it’s used for anything else. #shorty

#shorty And now the @charlestrippy moment, quoting Rick Astley. I think the biggest problem here is that we can’t hear the audience well.

Reading your 140 char speech VERY SLOWLY may be considered cheating. #shorty

Kudos to the Mars Rovers! Nice to see the inanimate objects represented tonight. #shorty

@actionwipes winning out over bitter rival @papertowels #shorty

Maybe not the most polished presentation in history, but there’s a sincerity here that makes it kind of sweet. #shorty

Wow, Twitter, inc. is really phoning this in. “The power of constraints?” Biz Stone #shorty

The Knight Foundation, they do JOURNALISM, or something. Kudos to the Shorty people for providing an open bar during a recession. #shorty

Working out interview details with @peggyolson Cell and Internet traffic must be crazy over there. #shorty

AFAIK, this will be the first real interview done via Twitter. Maybe because it’s a new idea or maybe because it’s a BAD idea. #shorty

Written by Michael B. Duff

February 11, 2009 at 20:59

Red Raiders rock ESPN front page at halftime

Written by Michael B. Duff

November 1, 2008 at 21:02

Posted in Humor, Movies, Polls, Warcraft

18 Reasons Why Lubbock is Better than Austin

Terry ran a “suitable for grownups” version of this on A-1 today, but gave me permission to post the original on my blog.

The print version was co-authored by Superstar Editor Mel Tittle, but please don’t blame him for these.

Tortillas hurt less than hacky sacks when hurled from the stands.

Tech cheerleaders take showers, eat beef and most of them shave their legs.

Tech mascot performs better knowing that horse is not a food.

Lubbock elects politicians and sends them to Austin where they can’t hurt anybody.

Tech’s historic come-from-behind victory will make a better movie.

Fans in Tech colors less likely to be mistaken for crossing guards when leaving stadium.

Which would you rather have come out of your college, 60 experimental wind turbines or 60 student films about death?

“Guns Up” more intimidating to opponents than “I love you” in sign language.

Our English majors can beat up your English majors.

At Texas Tech, Interpretive Dance is not a sport.

Tech student parking lot still a safe place for McCain stickers.

Wide, clean streets allow easy escape during post-game riots.

Soft, grassy medians provide alternative lodging for fans who couldn’t get hotel rooms.

In Lubbock, a “hybrid” is an R.V. with an electric stove.

Tech locker room less likely to smell like patchouli after the game.

Tech fans toughened by 60 m.p.h. winds and daily 8-mile hike to class.

Mike Leach plushie will sell better than Mack Brown action figure.

And finally, an Austin editor would bury this on D-6.

Written by Michael B. Duff

October 31, 2008 at 20:28

Posted in Best Of, Humor

We have always been at war with 8:30

At 8:20 this morning a Citibus driver showed up at my door and told me I was 20 minutes late for my 9 a.m. bus.

I was dripping wet and pantsless at the time, so I hope you will forgive my lack of critical thinking. As a certified computer geek, I assumed that there had been a time change Sunday morning, my phone and my PC had adjusted to it, and my analog-bound bus driver hadn’t noticed.

I called my buddy Scott for a ride and pounded out this frantic series of Twitter posts.

michaelduff IT IS AN HOUR EARLIER THAN YOU THINK IT IS. For God’s sake, why is this so complicated?

michaelduff NEVERMIND. It’s 8:30. It’s always been 8:30. We have always been at war with 8:30. GAAAAHHHH! Winston needs gin.

michaelduff @JohnCleese See? Even British people are confused. This is not my fault. Is there a website that can help me find my pants?

michaelduff Hide the old people and lock up your women, it’s Y2K8.

In the middle of this, the bus driver came back and said, “Oh wait, it really is 8:30. Also, Darth Vader is not Luke’s real father.”

Scott did some research for me and called back with the scoop. Until 2006, daylight savings time ended on the last Sunday in October, but as of 2006 daylight savings time does not end until Nov. 2.

This is particularly dangerous for people who rely on smart phones and dumb PCs to tell them what time it is. Your devices may or may not adjust automatically next week, so you have to be on your toes.

So what happened to me this morning? Only the Naval Observatory knows for sure.

Written by Michael B. Duff

October 27, 2008 at 09:08

Posted in Best Of, Humor

They call this customer service?

CONCERNED CITIZEN: “Yes, officer, thank you for coming down. I need to report something strange I saw outside the Avalanche-Journal offices this morning.

“A man with a beard and a cane came outside and started talking on his phone. He looked really agitated, frowning and pacing around. He seemed to get madder and madder as the call went on. At first I couldn’t hear him but then he got louder and I realized he was shouting ‘Pay my bill!’ over and over.

“It started soft and got louder. ‘Pay my bill. No. Pay my bill! Pay. My. Bill. PAY MY BILL! I JUST WANT TO PAY MY FREAKING BILL!!!’

“Then he shouted his social security number and threw his phone against the wall. His hair was messed up and his clothes looked cheap. I think he might be homeless.”

OFFICER: “No Ma’am, that’s just Duff. He does this every month.”

Written by Michael B. Duff

October 24, 2008 at 11:18

Posted in Humor