Davins Comedy Blog

DOCUMENTATION - By Davin Rosenblatt

In American political life we are once again being reminded of the importance of documenting things so that you can go back to the notes when things get a little weird.  Former FBI director James Comey was known for taking notes or memos.  He would make these to document when things were out of the ordinary.  FBI notes have been admissible in court and are highly regarded.   Comey took notes on meetings with President Trump.  He noted the conversation where Trump, without anybody else in the room, asked Comey to drop the Flynn investigation.  These memos are now just another scandal for the Trump administration. Long after Comey was fired and out of power his documentation could possibly set the record straight in a way his former boss never imagined.  A nation waits for that documentation.

I long ago valued the importance of documentation.  When I took a part time job as a waiter at a restaurant my boss did not pay me while I was training.  That was against state law.  I quit but I also was going to demand I got paid for the work I had done.  I did not know how unscrupulous this owner was going to be so I brought a tape recorder in with me and hid it in my pocket when I went in to confront him. When faced with state law he agreed to pay me. The recording was never needed but I did see the value in having it.

When I first started booking comedy shows I did not use a contract.  I was young and naïve. A contract is documentation on the terms of the agreement.  Well after not getting paid for a job once I never made that mistake again.  Every show I do has a contract and on a few occasions it has won me court cases.

It is so much easier to document things now with better and cheaper technology. Everything has a recording device in it and video recorders are cheap.  Even more and more police are using body cams which is documentation.

Good scammers use documentation. They keep notes on what their victims say.  I keep notes when I talk to scammers. I keep better notes then they do and I get to trip them up on their own words. It is quite enjoyable to watch a scammer hang by the noose they created.

Just recently somebody who I had thought was a friend tried to hurt my career.  I had been warned about this person but I give everybody a chance.  I posted something on Facebook. (I discussed what I posted on the radio show a few weeks ago).  She took offense to it and thought it was directed at her.  She asked me about it in a private message.  She kept on insisting I was angry. I was not and told her as much.  I thought we had solved the issue. I was mistaken as she blocked me mid-conversation. Ok, I figured end of that relationship. Unfortunate but it was her choice and I was fine with it.  Today I find out that she is lying to other people in the industry about what my initial post was and the conversation we had.  It was potentially costing me work.  Fortunately, I have the documentation of what I originally posted and the conversation we had.  I called up the people that I knew had heard the lies from her.  They were relying on hearsay. I had the evidence if it was needed.  We had a discussion and the air was cleared.  We are all fine. The woman that started this mess? Well she will never work for me again.  She is no longer working with the club she was partnering with.  She never was working for the other booker.  She wound up hurting herself.  As for me, I never really worried because I had the documentation to back up my story. Documentation always has your back!

Smart Aleck Curse - By Pip Helix (Davin's Den)

When I was born, the gypsy mid-wife took one look at me and declared that I would be full of Smart Aleck for the rest of my life.  Once the curse was placed upon me, my life story was basically written.

There is a good side to the Smart Aleck Curse, in that many people enjoy a side of snark with their meal of life’s little indignities and tribulations.  It certainly has been a social lubricant in some respects, and I do enjoy making people laugh, even if it’s the kind of laugh that says, “Oh my god, that is so bad. I’m not sure I should be laughing at that, but I kind of can’t help myself.”  I’ve made a lot of friends who enjoy my company because I’m funny, and once they get to know me, they can tell that the snark is never meant to hurt them. 
At least, I hope that they all know that!  It’s crucial to make sure that the naughty or acid tongue doesn’t wound anyone too deeply, or you friendships corrode.  It’s not always the easiest tightrope to walk.

The other part of the Smart Aleck Curse is that once afflicted, it is difficult if not impossible to wield the Snark on unsuspecting strangers, to varied results.  I have suffered the bewildered or wilting looks of many people in the service industry, because I just.can’t.keep.my.mouth.shut.  How I wish that the impulse to say something dumb would be squashed when I see someone behind a counter.  I try to remember to start out pleasant, smile, say please and thank you, and then…the stupid remark sneaks into my brain.  “No, stupid comment, you may not come out and play,” I say to myself, but it is bursting to get out, like a forgotten fermented jug of apple cider in the pantry.  And…the interaction turns weird.  They either laugh (thank the gods) or they immediately decide that I am a special kind of asshole, and go fetch a supervisor.  Damn.  It was going so well up until now.

A short compendium of snark and stupidity that made me into special kind of asshole:

In college, making a joking remark to an older professor about how whatever we were talking about and how her husband might respond to her if she said thus and such.  Moments after it was out of my mouth, I realized that she and a good portion of the class were staring at me aghast.  It turned out that most of the class knew that her husband was deceased, something I didn’t know until that ghastly moment.  Picture me sliding slowly under my desk, into the hole in the floor, and straight to hell.  I endured a heart-to-heart discussion with her at a later date regarding not following what she perceived to be a classmate’s bad influence, but the truth is, that was all me.  All Smart Aleck Curse.

Anyone who listens to the show knows that I am an especially obsessed Steve Winwood fan, and that adulation spills over to his very talented touring band.  Paul Booth, who just about plays everything but drums during the course of one of their concerts, is a great jazz horn player, and an all around good guy with a great sense of humor.  He understands my sense of humor, and is the best sport about teasing humor.  My friend and I were lucky enough to be told about a very small, hastily organized show that he was playing in New York, featuring members of Steve Winwood’s band and members of Rod Stewart’s band (who Steve was touring with).  My friend, who is another Winwood fan extraordinaire, and I were very excited, and amazed to be in the presence of so many talented musicians and their pals.  Almost everyone in the room was involved in the tour in some way, except for me and my friend.  Carried away by excitement, I saw Paul preparing his saxophone for the show right in front of the tiny stage, and I called to him, a few feet away, “Hey Paul!  Try not to suck!”  As soon as it was out of my mouth, I read his expression to mean that perhaps that kind of kidding was okay when we were standing around joking, but not in front of all of his peers.  I cringed a little, and I’m sure my face went red.  Just then, a female member of Rod Stewart’s band who was sitting on the next bar stool looked me up and down with a cold, eastern block nation stare, and asked me in her thick accent, “Are you a super fan?”  I was not familiar with the term, but considering the timing, the delivery and the look on her face, I read it to be a euphemism for “Special Kind of Asshole”.  I was so flustered, I don’t remember what I answered, but in that moment, I think she was merely confirming my status. I mentally crawled out to the street, climbed into my Special Asshole Mobile, and drove away…even though my body stayed for the show.

A friend from college had an abortion, and it was a very tightly held secret, of which I was one of only perhaps four people who was privy to this information.  One night, a couple of people were joking around, and my friend joked that she was a virgin.  I came back with a phrase that my father had used many times as I was growing up, always in the context that someone was NOT a virgin.  Dad used to say,  “Not unless there is a star shining in the east!”  It wasn’t until the moment it was out of my mouth, and I saw the stricken look on my friend’s face, did I realize that the other connotation to that comment was that there was a pregnancy involved.  Certain that I had said it to make clear that there had been a pregnancy involved, she swiped back at me with lightening speed with a reference to something I was ashamed of.  No matter how much I apologized and explained later, I am certain that she never believed my innocent slip, nor did she forgive me.

I know that there are others of you cursed with the same affliction, and you will recognize yourselves in these stories, and feel my pain as you wince with the second-hand humiliation.  There are others of you that will think, “How could you say that stupid thing?”  Those of you asking that question were clearly not the ones chosen by the gypsy – not the ones with the sign of the Curse.  For the rest of you, my people, I will see you at the monthly meetings.

I Have to be Brief - by Joe Currie (Davin's Den)

WHY? I may have sold my house, we will see, as the propensity for things to go tits up as it has been pretty much a constant from the home for the disabled walking away from the deal to buy the house, ”now they can walk”, And then one buyer asking if someone died in the house which was my mom. What am I supposed to do have a séance? I know my Mom and she is going to yell why she can’t enjoy eternity in peace without my stupid questions.

Now the question is when the time comes where do I go? I only moved once when my parents moved us from Jamaica Estates in Queens to where I live now in Huntington when I was three. I have moved people, but I never moved myself kind of cool and embarrassing at the same time.

The best place for me is a condo but after living on an acre for decades I don’t know what it would be like with people right next to me. I am not a sociable person and have lived on a block where people keep to themselves so I am not really open to small talk and busy body questions.

I also have to find a place for my grand piano which was my mom’s which she got when she was a teenager. The piano has been a center piece for the family for years and years and is a family member so it will be fun to see when people see that thing come into a condo. Thinking I will be keeping them up at night playing it, but truth is it is just for memories sake as I have fourteen keyboards at my disposal.

One thing that must come with me is the mantel over the fireplace. It’s amazing how an object no matter how plain it is, is so special due to the memory connected with it. This mantel was a project that my Mom and I worked on together when I was twelve, we picked it out, we stained it together, and we installed it together and every time I see it brings me right back and this needs to come with me.

With the excitement of moving comes the sadness of leaving a lot of memories, some amazing, some traumatic and sad, but none the less my life has all been under that roof and to know it won’t be there any more is kind of scary.
Even though I have lived here so long I remember when I renovated it back in ninety three when the house made the change from my parents’ house to my house. I watched my childhood bedroom become my office, I watched my mom’s office become my music room. And me making all the changes I wanted. 

One factor and one that has been a running gag with family and friends is that since my father died we were always moving the next year with my Mom, and then when she died I never knew if I would be in the house the next year either. When I get my new place I am staying. I want the feeling that I will be there for a while. 

I think about my last day there and I honestly don’t know how I will handle it. Will I just close the door and leave? Will I be an emotional wreck? I don’t know. I do want two things, that last day I want an hour alone, to walk room to room, may be take some video to reflect what each room meant to me. Also on the last night I want to sleep in my office which as I said was my old childhood bedroom. That was where I slept the first night I was there at three and that’s the last place I want to sleep all these years later as a man who rose to become one under this roof.


Back to Scamming Scammers - By Davin Rosenblatt

Well it looks like I am back at it. It has been a few years since I scammed a scammer. I have never looked for scammers to scam.  They have always found me but most of the time I just ignore them. 
I found this “girl” in my Other box on Facebook. She sent me a friend request which I ignored but then later she sent me a message with my name. She went the extra mile so I figured I would give her the attention she deserves.

In the past I have spent hours at a time scamming a scammer. It became all-encompassing and time consuming. It was in some ways like I was in a real relationship. I will not allow that to happen this time.  When you spend so much time with somebody even if it is based on complete BS you can still become attached. That will not happen either this time.

I also must fight the urge to be too cynical. I know their tricks. I am unimpressed and quite frankly, lazy scamming bores me. I can’t just call them out and tell them they are awful at this. It ruins the scam and they will run and worse yet they could learn from it. I have to pretend that it is all so new to me.  I think that is the hardest part for me. I have dealt with good scammers. They make me raise my game and educate me. Bad scammers are a dime a dozen and I find them a little insulting to my intelligence.

There is no interview process when dealing with a new scammer. You get what you are given and work with what they give you. They don’t know that I have other intentions for them. They don’t know that I need to craft their business practices into entertainment for a radio show. It would probably be easier if they did know.

The good thing is I know how they groom people. I know what they need. I will use that knowledge against them and try and make sure this is the hardest grooming process they have ever gone through.
I never know how this will play out. I have no idea how long I can keep them going without sending them anything. I need to get them so far invested that to cut ties quickly would be against their best interests. It is a balancing act and it will be coming to your radio on Tuesday nights on Davin’s Den very soon.

Wish me luck!

Bless You - By Pip Helix (Davin's Den)

Why do we continue to bless people when they sneeze?  It’s really a strange custom, and people never seem to think about it. 

Of the list of uncontrollable bodily functions, it can rank pretty high on the annoying scale.  Blinking, for example, is also out of our control, and is only annoying if someone does it to excess, without a normal rhythm, or does it way too slowly, like a stoner.  Most of the time, however, we don’t even notice when someone is doing it.  (And now that I’ve mentioned it, you are hyper-aware of how fast you are blinking, aren’t you? Sorry about that.)

Hiccups are also uncontrollable, but there is no phrase that you routinely say to someone with the hiccups, except for badgering the afflicted person with home remedies that never work.  “Drink a glass of sugar water!”  “Someone scare her!” “Hold your breath!”  How about just leave me the hell alone until they pass?  That doesn’t seem to be an option.  But in no case does anyone bless the person with the hiccups.  I guess you can just go to hell with your damn esophageal spasms.

Some people will argue that a burp is not uncontrollable.  Well, that is not exactly true.  You are able to control the presentation to a degree, like covering your mouth or trying to minimize the noise it makes, but you can’t completely stop it from happening.  If someone burps in our culture, it really depends on who is around as to what the reaction will be.  A full-on belch may be laughed at, scowled at, congratulated or scolded, depending on who dealt it and who witnessed it.  A two year old might be the cutest little belcher ever, but a 40 year old man is going to get the stink-eye from his wife if there is company.  Still, no one blesses the belchers.

Sneezing used to be thought of as a moment when one’s heart stopped, and people used to bless them so that their soul would be blessed just in case they didn’t come back from a particular sneeze.  Now that we know that heart stoppage isn’t the case, why do we continue to bless people?  Who even said that any of us has the authority to bless a soul before it passes on?  I still reflexively say, “Bless you” to a sneezer, but when you think about it, do you really want to go on to meet your maker with MY blessing being the last one bestowed upon you?  But socially, it is considered rude not to bless someone after a sneeze, so I just continue to say it, whether the person realizes what danger I may put their eternal soul into or not.

Next time you sneeze, I really hope, for your sake, that you are near someone with a little more authority.  I will issue you a blessing alright, but you just may not want it. 

Please By My House - By Joe Currie (Davin's Den)

It is now March and my house has been on the market since June of last year and I am at the end of my rope.

Since February of last year when I got separated, my main goal to get the house sold and from last year February until June I had worked tirelessly to prepare the house for sale and in June we put it up for sale.

Since I realized my marriage was over five years ago I was told that every next step to be taken would have to involve me which I have taken with some of these steps being rough and emotional. 
The one major step would be a buyer for the house, which is the most major step and the one that is out of my control.

If my Wife and I were still happily married it would not be that big of a deal, but we are separated and still living under the same roof living separate lives. It’s odd that the person who was the center of your life you barely know now and the reality will continue until the house is sold.

I heard if you buried a statue of St. Joseph it would help you sell the house quicker and everybody has their opinion on how to bury him.  I have tried every which way and no luck. I have not given up the faith and maybe if I stopped calling him St. Francis maybe he would help.

We did have people that were interested such as a home for the disabled, who strung us along for three months before they walked away a day before we were to go to contract, Bullshit, but at least I have a joke about disabled people walking away.

We had one person who wanted to buy the house and then wanted to knock it down. People asked me if I would be upset and I told them I would be the first person on the bulldozer when the check cleared.

We have had people that were scheduled to look at the house and never came. Do you know how frustrating it is to be at the library a mile from your own home sitting there while you are waiting for somebody that’s never coming?

Then there is having an open house and having no one show up, which my real estate agent says is because the taxes may be too high and maybe they should have been grieved, great, would have been good advice back in June.

It is very frustrating trying to move on with your life when you feel it’s stalled and the keys to it moving are from somebody you don’t even know yet. But with this everything else is going okay from the radio show, my two bands, and my comedy. I then look at people I know going through far worse things as battling a disease, being out of work, or losing a loved one, and I realize my situation as dire as it is, is a lot less worse than what other folks are going through. 

So if you if you are looking for a nice four bedroom home in a nice area please buy my house.

How to Write a Damn Check - by Pip Helix (Davin's Den)

It is truly disturbing to me to see, via my day program, that there is an unacceptable portion of the public that does not know how to write a check.   It may be a dying art, with the advent of electronic payment and debit cards, but there are still instances when being able to write a check is necessary.  And before I completely lose my sanity, by God, I am going to teach you how to do it.

First of all, parents should show their children how to properly write a check. It’s not taught in school, to the best of my knowledge, and it’s not intuitive.  If it was, I would not be sighing and rolling my eyes so hard that they are about to pop out of my head and roll down the day program hallway.  If the parents don’t know how to do it either, have them take this quick tutorial, and save me some money on my Tums budget.

First of all, pick up a blue or black pen.  Not red, not green, not purple, not marker, and for the love of God, nothing sparkly.  Blue or black.  Banks and companies hand them out for free, so go get one.  It’s not that difficult.  I’ll wait.

Back?  Good.  The reason you should use blue or black is because that is what is universally acceptable at all banking institutions, and because you don’t look like a grown up writing checks with your sparkly purple pen.  Stop that.  You can write notes, greeting cards, shopping lists, etc. with that crap, but for checks, use a grown up pen.  Can you just manage that please?  Also, not all check scanners can read your dumb third-grader choice of ink color, so it’s BLUE OR BLACK. And don’t even start me about writing checks in pencil.  Do not even start with that.  I can’t believe anyone thinks that is okay – and yet, I have seen it done.

Now that we have found the correct pen, let’s start on the actual check writing.  Let’s start with the date.  You always write TODAY’S DATE.  Not yesterday, the date it was actually due.  You are not fooling anyone with that crap, so knock it off.  Not tomorrow’s date, because that is called post-dating, and a lot of the time, the person you are writing the check to can’t accept a post-dated check.  Why, you whine?  Because the check is only payable on the date it is dated.  When you go to the grocery store, do you bag your groceries and then tell them that you will be back to pay them tomorrow, or next Thursday, or whatever?  No you do not, because you don’t want them hitting you over the head with the frozen rump roast you just tried to steal.  You have to pay them on the spot.  So, when you write a check, write the day the calendar says it is.  You are not going to make any kind of interest on the money you think you are going to hold onto for another day, because no one is making any interest on investments right now, anywhere.  Stop being a dope and PAY THE PERSON ALREADY.

Now that you have put today’s date on the check, we are at the easy part.  Write the name of the person you are paying on the payee line.  Just write their real name, not any cute nicknames, because “Lefty” can’t cash a check made out to “Lefty” when their I.D. says they are “Fred”.  Not even “Meg” when their real name is Margaret.  Think!  Use their real name!  If you aren’t sure how to make out the check, for crying out loud, ask.  ASK.  Or read the bill.  Bills usually tell you how to make the payment out.  If it is for the State of New York, for example, it might say, “Make check payable to Treasurer, State of New York”.  Just write that out.   Don’t write, “New York DMV” or whatever you think it might be.  Don’t try to be more clever than the damn instructions. 

Next, and you better sit down for this one, is the legal line of the check, where you write out the amount of the check in WORDS.  This seems to be the most challenging area by far for people, especially if they are writing a check for a relatively large amount, say, a couple thousand dollars.  Once they have that many numerical places to cover, all sense leaves their minds and stupidity sets up shop.  For some reason, with all that cash at stake, most people forget the hundredths position.  $4,353.63 becomes “Four Thousand and Fifty-Three, 63/100.”  I don’t know why this is, but it happens ALL.THE.DAMN.TIME.  Oh well, the person thinks – I got it right in the little box where you write the numbers.  WRONG.  Oh so wrong!  If the bank scans that check, and sees a discrepancy between the numbers and the words, the WORDS are what they go by.  That’s why it’s called the “legal line”.  So, you still owe someone $300 dollars, chump.

The other part that is interesting about the words portion of the check is that even when people know that they are writing a big number, they start to write in huge lettering, not even bothering to think if they will run out of room – which they always do.  Write smaller to fit it all in, folks.  Why is this hard?

You can save room by writing “Forty-three hundred” instead of “Four Thousand, Three Hundred”, but this revelation seems to blow peoples’ minds rather than be helpful, so you have to learn this trick for yourself.  Either write small, economize on the number of words, or just squish it all in there, but whatever you do, don’t whine to anyone that there isn’t enough room.  You’ve seen checks before, and you know how much you are paying.  Make room, dammit!  And you write out the pennies as a fraction, 63/100, or you say “…and sixty-three cents”.  No combinations of the two, no adding your own symbols or forgetting to write out the pennies at all. This is not a creative arts assignment.
Now, the dollar amount you write in the box.  (SIGH).  This should be easy.  It SHOULD be.  Apparently, it’s not.  First of all, you know how to write out numbers in a way that people universally should be able to tell what numbers they are, right?  Can you write them inside the box, and stay inside the lines, please?  Did you ever color as a kid?  Did you stay inside the lines?  Can you go buy a coloring book and practice, before making your way up to writing a check, PLEASE?  And practice your damn numbers? Don’t make me GUESS what amount you are paying.

Your signature.  Mother of God, this should be easy.  Please, just sign your legal name.  Don’t send people unsigned checks, trying to get away with not paying something for a few more days.  It is NOT a cute look.   And if that person is in the position of charging you a penalty for paying late, don’t think the old, “Oh dear, I didn’t sign it?  Can you imagine?” trick is fooling anyone.  Now you are going to pay a penalty, fool.

The memo line.  The line where you are supposed to write things that help the person who is getting your payment identify why the hell you are paying them.  An invoice number is great.  An account number – that helps.  A reference to a service, a date, something that will help them apply your payment.  Stupid notes to yourself, a blank line, or, the WORST of them all, complaints and nastiness, are not helpful.  Do you really think that the person applying your check to your account is the person who is going to do something about your bitterness?  Don’t think that “Paid in protest” or “Extortion” or some other stupid complaint on your check is doing anything.  The poor data-entry clerk probably hates their boss too, so all you have done is added more fuel to their bitterness, not further your cause.  Address your grievances in an adult, productive way.  It only makes you look stupid to the people who open the envelope and laugh at your impotent remarks.  Nobody bothers to show it to the person you are lashing out at.  NO ONE does this.  Workers are far too busy, and their boss will not appreciate them bringing negativity to their desk.  Write a damn letter if you are unhappy.  Your memo line is not the place to do it.  If you persist with this method, you may as well drop your complaints into a bottle and throw them into the East River, never to be seen again.
Last instruction.  When you find yourself with the uncontrollable urge to write all over the check, in every conceivable blank space, information that you think is helpful, like your phone number, your elaborate notes on what the payment is for, your dog’s license number, etc. – stop yourself.  You look like a mental patient with all that.  Knock it off.  Write a cover letter if you must get it all out of your system, but don’t plaster your check with hieroglyphics that only your neurotic mind can decipher.  It’s a check, it’s not graffiti art.

There. I hope that it’s been helpful to read this.  I hope that this will quell some of the more stupid inclinations that some people have when approaching writing a check.  Because if I keep seeing this frightening trend of people not being able to perform this simple task, I am going to have to start ripping checks up in a frenzy of misanthropic rage, and climb the building making monkey noises.  If everyone else is going to devolve, I am going to lead the charge.

THE POWER OF SNOWFLAKES - by Davin Rosenblatt

I woke up this morning and I looked out my window and I thought there was a protest. I saw thousands and thousands of  snowflakes.  There were snowflakes on the street. Snowflakes on my car. Snowflakes at my front door.  Snowflakes marching from the sky.  Nothing was moving except the relentless march down of snowflake after snowflake.

The funny thing is it is common parlance to make one sound weak by calling them a snowflake.  Yet as I turn on the news snowflakes have cancelled schools. They have shuttered businesses.  Roads are closed.  Planes grounded.  Snowflakes did all that.  They stopped it all without a whisper of violence.
Snowflakes bring joy to the youngest among us.  They make us harken back to our own personal good old days. Snowflakes are pure and uncorrupted until they are soiled by man, beast, or machine.  Still after snowflakes are soiled they still are snowflakes just with a bit more color and experience. 
Snowflakes make men realize it is time to get to work. Snowflakes will only yield with much effort and force.  Snowflakes can make lesser men yield under the pressure they exert because snowflakes work together.  Snowflakes provide payed work.  Snowflakes spur our economy. Snowflakes like to get blown.  

Snowflakes make you feel alive when you stick your body into a group of them.   Snowflakes provide a  rush as you swoosh down them on skis or tubes or sleds.  Snowflakes are heavenly as they come from the sky above and move to the arms and legs of children so that before they return to the heavens they too get to be an angel.

Others try to use the name snowflake to demean. Call me a snowflake for I see the beauty, the utility, and the society that snowflakes influence.  I know that some fear the hidden power of the snowflake and will try to silence the snowflake under the bristling pitch of hot air.  Sometimes a snowflake will melt and change form and bide its time but rest assured the snowflake will come back.  So yes I am a snowflake and there are other snowflakes. More than you can imagine. We are beautiful and unique and we have more impact that you ever gave us credit for.

I Just Want To Get A Soda - By Joe Currie (Davin's Den)

Tuesday for me is usually a long day, I am up at six am and usually tired as band rehearsal was the night before In Jersey and I live on long Island. Anyway, I get up do final show prep, go to the day program, work through lunch, take ten minutes to plug our show on Face book and Twitter, I then drive in two and a half hours of rush hour traffic, do a three hour radio show, usually have a meeting or a talk story with Pip and Davin afterwards, and then drive two hours back home.
As you can see by the end of all this I am very tired and I usually get home between twelve midnight to twelve thirty am.

This particular night as I was exhausted I had to pull over and take a nap as falling asleep while doing eighty going down the New York Thruway is never a good idea.

I finally got back into my home town of Huntington at twelve forty five, and I was debating whether I wanted to eat before I went to bed or just crash out when I got in.

I decided I wanted to have a bite to eat and I also wanted to get a soda and a newspaper to have during dinner.

Your local seven eleven is always that place to pop in and pop out and get on your way.

I go in and notice there looks like a commotion in the parking lot when I get out of the car, but at this time of night it could be an ISIS training exorcise and I don’t care I just want to get my stuff and go home.

I walk into the store and nobody is in there, not even the clerk and I figure it must be due to the altercation out in the parking lot, so I leave my purchase and decide this is the last straw in a long day and I am just going to go home.
As I walk out I see a gentleman having a yelling match with the clerk by his car, this is still none of my business and I am going home.

I then see the man start striking the clerk, and now shit is getting real. As this is happening there is this cab driver who is leaving as he says he has no time to be involved with this shit and pulls away, there are these two other guys who immediately pull out their phones and start filming as I guess they want this to go viral. I immediately pull my phone out and do something really wacky with it I CALL THE FUCKING COPS.  
I was on the phone with the 911 operator for about two minutes answering all her questions and feeling embarrassed that I forgot the name of a side street in a town that I have lived in since I was three. As I was speaking to the operator the altercation is still going on, and in the back of my mind I am wondering how long it would take for the police to arrive, and I got my answer, NOT LONG.
As soon as I got off the phone five police cars came literally out of nowhere and swooped right in, they grabbed the assailant and put him right to the ground and in cuffs, the whole thing took less than two minutes and it shows how well the cops work to keep us safe. The last cop to arrive admitted he was three miles away but he got here in less than two minutes, I told him even though he was the last squad car out the five to arrive we still love him.

Now as soon as the police have the guy in cuffs two officers are getting a statement from the clerk, several other cops come up to us bystanders to see what happened. Here is a lesson that needs to be learned from all the videos we see damning the cops in the recent year, “it is the facts and what you actually saw versus what people perceive happened”.

The bystanders where myself and two African American guys (who were also the guys filming the fight I guess looking for the next world Star hip hop video)
Also the assailant was also African American. I told the police my side of the story and I also said that the two other gentlemen are bystanders like me and had nothing to do with the altercation that went on. 

Now you may be reading this and saying “ Really Archie Bunker” going out of your way making sure the cops know that black guys did not commit a crime”,, yeah,, because I live in the real world and know about the misconceptions that may happen until the facts are there and how some bystanders are assholes in these situations and don’t look at the facts.

The police said no problem and those gentlemen left to go on their way.
The police noting that I saw the man hitting the clerk wanted to know if I wanted to make a statement. I am tired and want to go home, but ya damn right I do as you can’t complain about things if you don’t want to be involved when it comes your way. And I feel good about myself. The cops say great however at this time of night there is a shift change and it should be forty minutes before a detective arrives to take a statement and then they take my license. Now I feel like an asshole.

The guy who assaulted the clerk was no choir boy, he had a rap sheet down to the floor and his car was stolen, there was also a knife he allegedly threatened the clerk with that he threw  but the police dog found. When I heard that I told the cops who’s gonna get some milk bones when they get back to the station.

The Clerk was a very nice Asian man who was shaken but okay with a scratch on the back of his head. The altercation started as the guy tried to steal two cases of beer. To be on the safe side the cops called the local first aid squad to take a look at the clerk. The rescue squad pulls up and in come five woman that look like they can’t be more than seventeen to twenty one and my first reaction is “Don’t you have School in the morning” they were very nice and very good and these people are the unsung heroes of the neighbor hood as at one thirty in the morning they could be home asleep but they are helping people in need.

While this is going on I am still waiting for the police to give me my  license back, I don’t have anything to hide but I don’t want to forget, get pulled over and when the cop asks for my license asks for my license and go, “oh, you guys have it”.
Eventually I had it returned to me, and the cops all six of them were cool and I was goofing around with them, they asked me where I was coming from and told them I do a radio show and coming home from there, they were not impressed. They also apologized for the wait and rolled their eyes when they mentioned the wait for the detective to show up, I mentioned a little animosity between you guys and them and they kind of laughed.

At about two o’clock  the detectives show up one of them goes behind the counter to write up the report, the other two walk in and congratulate him on his new job as a 7-11 clerk, he offers them free coffee, I say, look at this guy on the job for two minutes and he is already giving shit away.

I gave my statement and I was good to go, over an hour later. I walked out of the store and I see the yellow police crime scene tape and two crime scene trucks and two more cop cars realizing that it must have been a slow night.
I got home and explained to the co-owner of the house why I am late and she asks if I am okay and told her “no I was shot five times” and went to bed.
I got three hours of sleep, no dinner, no soda, no paper but the satisfaction that I took action and wanted to help someone in need.    
The story even made the local bulletin.


I'm so tired - By Pip Helix (Davin's Den)

I’m so tired of the political conversation.  Absolutely exhausted. It’s not that I’m tired of discussing politics as much as I’m exhausted by the way politics is discussed these days.
On Facebook let’s face it - it’s become a useless exercise to post something about the things in the new political landscape I don’t agree with, or point out the ridiculousness of the latest Tweet, appointment or other blurting of our new President or his team.  It only brings on either an echo-chamber from my like-minded friends, or a vicious attack from some friend of a friend who needs to call someone a “snowflake” or “libtard” really badly.  Or a barrage of off-topic memes from the alt-right, usually about something charming like “Killary”.

It takes so much energy to keep having conversations that go nowhere, have no consequences as far as the way things are run, and leave me feeling bitter and powerless.  It’s especially difficult to keep having these conversations with people who I otherwise like and perhaps even respect. 

I will admit that it has begun to color my perception of some people, when they are so adamantly one-sided that they can’t even concede that certain things are bad ideas, and some things that are said are plain ludicrous.  When Kellyanne Conway uses phrases like “alternate facts”, I am astonished that anyone can defend this person with a straight face.  Even if one is completely on-board with everything the new President and his team have planned or have done, a reasonable person should be able to break from the herd and say, “No, this is stupid, and I don’t agree with this.”

However, it seems to have become impossible for people to have reasoned conversation about politics and current events.  Everyone seems to be Team Red or Team Blue, and there is a no man’s land in between that we are not allowed to talk about.  When I see something bad or unreasonable being done or discussed within the liberal political side, I am not afraid to say that I am disappointed or in complete disagreement with it. It doesn’t mean that I throw down my liberal card and cross over to the other side.  It simply means that I can see a field of grey between black and white, or red and blue, as it were.

It saddens me, and exhausts me, that the ability to have sane, reasonable, considerate conversation about political topics has gone by the wayside, and so many people have over-simplified issues into Killary or Demented Cheeto.  Politics is so much more nuanced and complicated that these overhyped teams, and conversations devolving into name-calling and screaming is something I’ve grown weary of.