From the monthly archives:

January 2005

The Spider Trap – New Search Marketing Blog

by Dave on January 31, 2005

in

I’m starting a new blog (as much as I am growing to hate that term) for work which I want Google to find – so I’m linking to it here. You know the drill by now. Within a few months it will become a wealth of search engine marketing and search engine optimization information. So if you care, stay tuned.

Back to the word ‘blog’ and its origins. The term stems from a mish-mash of the words “web” and “log” which when used together was how folks referred to online journals, once upon a time. Google’s Blogger (which I use here – but will soon replace) has made it so easy to have your own ‘blog’ that I’m seriously waiting for my grandmother to send me her URL. I’d guess that www.dontbecheeky.com would probably be her first choice. Or maybe something along the lines of www.getthosedamnsquirrelsoutofthebirdfeeder.net. Regardless, I am in mourning for the medium. Johnny and Janey Everyman are doing to the blog what the white man did to Jazz and hip-hop. Speaking of which, have you heard Kenny G’s new version of Straight Outta Compton?

{ 4 comments }

All The News That’s Fit To Ignore.

by Dave on January 31, 2005

in

The following text is a letter my friend Steve penned to the Boston Globe this morning. I had thought of mentioning something similar here on the blog last week, but this speaks volumes and I’m glad that I waited. It is really horrifying (there’s just no other word for it) to think that most major media outlets are downplaying what is happening in Iraq right now because it hurts their agendas and conflicts with their leanings. Have a read:

I’m utterly disappointed with your coverage of the Iraqi elections. I arrived yesterday, to my adopted home town, fresh from a business trip that afforded me the opportunity to see how Europe, Central and Eastern Asia report upon these crucial Iraqi elections. I rushed down the steps of our triple-decker in South Boston, keen to hear how the elections had played out.

While your headline declares “Iraqis flock to polls” your accompanying editorial misses the point – by about a half century (since the last free elections). Your affront continues, like a toothless pup, at the ankles of the birth of a nation’s independence. Your partisan journalism is found to fail the international fabric of Boston.

You may want to take a note from your column on the Gilette merger, “… as Boston, which once called itself the Hub of the Universe, now finds itself playing second fiddle to cities such as Cincinnati, Charlotte, N.C., and Toronto. I believe your once great news source, is now solidly Bush league, restrained by overt political blindness.”

I couldn’t find the editorial Steve is referring to, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out where it’s likely coming from. “Yeah, free elections and Democracy are great and everything, but Bush-bad-lied-Haliburton-no WMD-drunk daughters”. The article was also summarily buried in favor of a story about illegal Guantanamo tribunals and has now dropped somewhere below the piece about whether or not Johnny Damon should cut his hair before his book tour is over. I wish I was kidding. Regardless of what you believe, whom you support or where you stand on issues of the day remember – always consider the source.

{ 15 comments }

Appetizer: If you had a free subscription to any mag, which would you pick?

Didn’t we have an extremely similar question just recently? Yawn. No matter, I’ve changed my mind. It would be a disturbing hybrid of the new hardcore version of Hustler and Tiger Beat.

Soup: If you became famous, what would you choose as your stage name?

I’d use my real name. I have a blog – obviously I’m not too concerned with anonymity. But let’s talk about porn star names for a minute. Chime in with yours: you remember the drill – your first name is your first pet, your surname is the street you grew up on. That would make me “Apple Island View”. Not so catchy in the light of day. I think I’d go with Dick Hertz.

Salad: What ingredients make an awesome salad?

Cheese, cheese and cheese. I don’t care if it’s gorganzola, feta or even something you picked out from between your toes. The Cobb, the Greek – all lovely. I often carry bricks of gouda over to friend’s dinner parties in case they’re not hip to the practice. And when I tell them I’ve got a little gouda in my pants, they look at me with sad eyes and say, “please leave now”.

Main Course: What do you like most about your current job?

The ability to make or break online businesses based on my skills. SEO skills, Bowstaff skills, etc. We do more of the making, and less of the breaking, thankfully. We’re a small, cohesive unit who can have a massive impact on anyone who signs on. The marketplace is becoming flooded, however, and I fear it is not to last. And Yetis.

Dessert: Who is your favorite instrumental musician (not a singer)?

I’m gonna run with this one a bit. There have been 3 extremely influential guitarists in the past 20 years that I want to mention. The first being The Edge from U2. Like the band or not, when he plays you know it’s him – and it’s extremely hard to find a signature sound on an instrument that exists in such abundance and is so widely used across all musical genres. The second is Johnny Marr of The Smiths for much the same reason. Marr forever changed the way in which a generation of subsequent strummers approached the insturment. Extremely complicated chord progressions and rhythms. Marr’s anithesis, Joey Santiago, is my third choice. He is the polar opposite of Marr – came onto the scene with only a few years of experience under his belt, technically a very poor guitarist. But the fearless sounds that he managed to make have yet to be duplicated, although many have tried. Find the songs ‘Something Against You’ or ‘Vamos’ by The Pixies, lock yourself in a dark room and then crank the volume up to 10 if you don’t believe me. You know what? I am going to blare them both right now.

{ 10 comments }

Triconi and Krintzman, a.k.a. Doug & Doug, have their new Southern Comfort TV spots airing twice this weekend during the two showings of Me Myself & Irene on FX – tonight and tomorrow at 10pm EST. The jist is, they’re scouring the seedy depths of New Orleans during Mardi Gras seeking SoCo’s secret recipe, and all sorts of funny hijinks ensue.

If you haven’t already, visit their site and watch the two hilarious videos they have posted. Then click here to see Tri-con manhandling my cat. And if you’re in watching TV tonight or Saturday, tune in and catch the spots. It’s a great movie, and the multiple ads are spaced out throught the two-hour slot. Good luck boys! This could be the start of something big. Or at least a crate of free SoCo, which Krintzman would likely prefer over Playboy bunnies anyday.

{ 4 comments }

When Janet told me that her New Year’s Eve Blind Date was a bit of a pig, I just thought she meant he was portly. Or perhaps went for tongue during the midnight kiss. Boy, was I WAY off.

I know, I know. You can’t judge a book by it’s cover. I’m sure porky keeps his sty clean, is an effective truffle sniffer and never, ever, squeals like Ned Beatty. I too have picked up a few pigs in Pho over the years – who hasn’t – but they always had hearts of gold. And were men.

{ 3 comments }

Angelo Rizza – Boston & New York Hair Stylist.

by Dave on January 27, 2005

in

I finished another website last night for my friend, Angelo Rizza. He’s an excellent hair stylist and colorist who works in Boston and New York City. When he’s working in Boston he can be found at Avanti Salon on Newbury Street. So, if you’re in need of an excellent Boston hair stylist, visit the site and give him a ring.

OK, now you’re asking yourself “Dave, did you fall and hit your head this morning? Where the hell are the hooker jokes?” the answer is “yes” actually. But that has nothing to do with why I’ve just sung the praises of Angelo for an entire paragraph. Or suffocated a hooker.

Here’s the way search engine algorithms are playing it these days: they give incredible relevance to your ranking based on incoming links to your site, and the keywords contained in those links. So, if I build a website for a Boston hair stylist, and I want it to be well ranked for that keyword phrase, I link to it from external sites using those very same words within the hyperlink. You dig? You still reading?

So now Google, which spiders my site daily, will follow the link, find the new site and then add it to it’s index. Some people pay me a lot of money for advice like that (or my company, I should say – I still can’t afford good snow boots). So if you wake up in a sweat tonight, wondering why you obsess over reading my site everyday – now you have an excellent way to justify it. Free SEO advice/dead hooker jokes always keep asses in seats.

{ 0 comments }

Again With The Snow.

by Dave on January 26, 2005

in

Working from home on Monday was cool. I did enjoy getting to stay up a little later carousing after the Patriots victory Sunday night. And I grew up in Ottawa so this hardly phases me – but fer feck’s sake, Old Man Winter – Give us a chance to dig out at least. In the last three days I’ve ruined 2 pairs of dress shoes. I got a phone call at work from my hysterical 78-year-old neighbor pleading with me to carry her trash to the end of the street. I assume that the alarm going off in my office building right now means snow evacuation and my now having to walk all the way home after just arriving. But let’s get back to North End ‘Snow Rules’ for a second.

  1. If you shovel someone’s sidewalk, staircase or entry way, you get to remind them of that fact every time you see them until at least the first snowfall of the following winter.
  2. Thinking about moving one of those planters blocking the sidewalk on almost every main street to shovel/plow snow? Think again.
  3. If you put your trash out before nightfall, your name will be mud (this actually applies all year round).
  4. If you live on a lane, and it’s snowed in, you have to carry all your trash to neutral main street areas.

Stay warm, kids. It’s far from over.

{ 2 comments }

The SideBar Website Is Alive. ALIVE.

by Dave on January 26, 2005

in Heartwarming

It’s been a long night, but I finally got The SideBar‘s new website off the ground. Please click on through and have a look. I’ve convinced the owners to start a monthly lottery to encourage people to register for the site’s mailing list. $50 goes a long way in that joint, so sign up now for a chance to win. The best part is, after you join you’re still eligible to win the lottery every single month going forward. Not a bad deal, if I do say so myself.

There’s a lot of work left to do in terms of content, but I’m getting there and figured it was time to roll it on out to the people (and the search engine spiders). You’ll notice I snuck a lot of my friends onto the front page – Emily, Monster, Bobby, Kyle, Troy, etc. If you’ve got a problem with that, I’d like to suggest a local community college web design course. And suicide.

{ 1 comment }

Do Any Of My Peeps Need A G-Mail Account?

by Dave on January 25, 2005

in

By now I’m sure you’ve all heard about the wonders of Google’s free service: G-Mail… You get a gigabyte of storage, a 10 MB transfer limit, user-friendly filing abilities and a whole lot more. The downside is, you need to get an invite from someone who already uses it to be part of the silly fun-fun.

I feel like one of those shock-jocks or something but: for a limited time, not valid in New Jersey, Poughkeepsie or Idaho, employees of Pye In The Face and their relatives are not eligible to win (bell rings, whistle blows, prostitute screams for her life) – I have 10 G-Mail accounts to give away. First come, first serve. E-mail or IM me.

With people finder websites you can find people online including finding friends and old classmates that you just can’t seem to get ahold of anymore. You can also find criminal records on just about any person on most people search websites.

{ 3 comments }

The Legend Of Tom Adams.

by Dave on January 24, 2005

in Heartwarming

One of the first people I met after moving to England to work at The Hind’s Head in 1998 was Tom Adams. I immediately had him pegged as a bit of a ham, albeit a hilarious one, but so many people seemed to come into the pub and recognize him… point… giggle… that I finally asked him what the big deal was. “David, my young Canadian friend,” he began. “I’ve been in the motion pictures, you see!” I learned from talking to other locals that he was most reknown for the string of funny commercials he’d made. Most of them for DFS Furniture. But his most famous spot was the infamous and side-splitting Hyundai ad.

Tom’s career has actually been fairly impressive overall. He played one of the British prisoners in The Great Escape and even has a few lines. He co-starred with Raquel Welch in Fathom (watch the trailer and look for the guy trying to kill Raquel with a speargun) and has been on all kinds of notable TV shows: Dr. Who, Remington Steele and The Avengers – to name a few.

When I left England he came to my ‘leaving do’ and offered some words of wisdom while my co-worker Tim went around videotaping all of the locals. “David and I have spent many long afternoons together discussing his problems… of which there are many.” Funny stuff. But actually I spent the majority of my time trying to keep the pub landlord from killing Tom – as he would hit on his wife incessantly. Tom is nearly 70 years old and still chasing tail like a drunken teenager. Quite effectively, I might add. I hope to go back to Bray some day soon, and when I do I’ll look him up. Or should I say, I’ll walk into The Hind’s.

{ 0 comments }

I Love My New Phone. But Not Snow.

by Dave on January 23, 2005

in

Kids – switch to Nextel immediately. Can’t stress that enough. More importantly, when did Boston turn into Hoth? The heat is off in my living room, and I’m about to slice open a tauntaun and crawl inside in order to keep watching the Patriots game in relative comfort. Will a TV fit inside one of those crazy ice-hopping creatures? I’ll let you know.

And more more importantly, thanks for all the laughs, Johnny.

{ 3 comments }

Appetizer: What is one quality you really admire about yourself?

My mother is a pussycat, while my father is a bit of an arsehole. I was once an even mix of the two personalities – each type has its own pros and cons. I was a tender and sympathetic young lad, but 3 high schools in 4 years changed that dramatically. In University I hovered somewhere in-between, but the past 5 years of inner-city living have pushed me further and further towards the dark side. I guess I admire my ability to embrace and appreciate the need to have a balance of good and evil in your personality. It’s essential for self preservation – and reminding yourself that while showing young girls your boxer shorts on the street is pretty hot, it can still get you arrested in most states.

Soup: What kind of shampoo and conditioner do you use?

PineSol and Ajax. Alternately.

Salad: Describe your favorite movie scene. The one that gets to you every time.

There are several. The scene in Goodfellas where Liotta’s voiceover starts talking about how Jimmy has just decided to kill everyone involved with the heist. There’s a slow motion zoom on DeNiro, leaning against a bar engulfed in cigarette smoke while Sunshine of Your Love plays in the background. That always gives me a chill. Then there’s the scene in Blade Runner where Roy saves Deckard from falling off the building and then sits down in the rain to give him a strange Nexus 6 soliloquy: “I watched seabeams glitter in the dark off the Tanhauser Gate…” You don’t know what the hell the dying android is talking about – but you’re transfixed none the less. I could give you ten more. And then act them all out with legos.

Main Course: If you were a veggie, which one would you be, and why?

A brussel sprout. Because I’d have a much longer life expectancy.

Dessert: If you took a trip within 100 miles where would you go?

To my buddy Dave Vadenais’ restaurant in Sturbridge. A ‘friend’ and I went up there about a year ago for dinner, etc. and had a delicious time. Amazing food, super atmosphere and a great excuse to get out of the city. Also a convenient, out of the way town in which to bury said friend in a shallow grave when the date turns sour. Dave, what did you put in that salad, you silly goose?!

{ 0 comments }

Ridin’ That Train… High On Methane…

by Dave on January 20, 2005

in

Some people who blog in Boston do little else but bitch about the T. I have refrained thus far, as I only ride the detestable subway when it gets cold outside. But baby – it’s cold outside. So as it happens, I have a gripping tale of lust, agony and deceit to share with you from this morning’s commute. Translation: strange smells, mental illness and filth. Or ‘business as usual’ as most regular riders would agree.

Look – and I shouldn’t have to come out and say this – please don’t break wind on the T. Unless you have a syndrome of some kind or a severe digestive dilemma – there’s just no excuse for it. No one has ever had to bust ass so badly that they can’t hold it for a few stops. When I walked onto the train at Haymarket this morning, the warm, slimy gust of methane that greeted my sinuses made me feel like I was stepping into a cattle car for a 3 day ride to a gulag somewhere. It smelt like a goddamn pig farm – who are you people? Here’s an idea, save a cork from your next vino purchase and plug yourself up anytime you need to leave the house. Oh, and my new Nextel makes a loud fart sound whenever someone texts me. In that context, it’s perfectly acceptable.

After I found a spot leaning against the wall, a small man with a beard and glasses loudly slapped the wall beside where he was sitting, got up and rushed of the train just as the doors closed. Maybe that’s some kind of OCD, maybe he was high-fiving the car due to an impressive travel time or maybe it was even a little fresh with him. I really can’t say. But I will say this – find him and lock him up immediately. To my left was a scrawny, herion addicted looking chap with a Great Gatsby hat, beard and so many earrings that I felt a sudden need to inventory my tackle box when I get home tonight. He was drawing a floorplan in a small notebook and when the train stopped at Park Street, he started cursing and waving his hand up and down. Then he turned to the horrified woman beside him, smiled and asked to get past her. Needless to say, she obliged. Then he stepped off the train and broke back into his cussin’ and blindin’ as he walked along the side of it. I have to assume that the floorplan was actually a few ideas on how to feng shui his padded cell when his day pass expires at 4 p.m. today.

Then, before we could pull out of Park Street, the T driver got up suddenly, came out from behind her curtain like the Wizard of Oz, looked at the car full of people, said something unintelligible and then walked off – only to be replaced by 2 MBTA cops. They surveyed the crowd, talked to a few people and stayed on board until the hysterical driver returned 3 or 4 minutes later. Did she think she’d spotted a suspected terrorist in her rear view? Can you guess why the cops didn’t stop to talk to me? I was a little insulted as I like to think I look rather ominous when wearing my Triple Fat Goose jacket and Trailer Park Boys toque. Please be gentle and don’t ruin that for me. It’s all I have.

{ 6 comments }

Hey Good Buddies – Who Else Gots A Nextel?

by Dave on January 20, 2005

in

Due to all-around abysmal reception, and a contact within the company (I believe Master P called that ‘The Hook Up’, I’ve switched over to a Nextel cellphone – and I’m really pleased so far. I don’t need to go up to the roofdeck with a coat-hanger and tin foil in order to make a call on a $300 phone anymore. And I can actually hear the phone when it rings as opposed to before when the tone could get drowned out by fruitfly flatulence.

One of the coolest features is the Direct Connect capability, which allows you to use your phone as if you’re speaking to someone on a walkie-talkie. I told my friend Megan (the only other person I know with a Nextel) my Direct Connect number and she crackled through a few minutes later – I may live to regret that. But very Convoy-ish and cool. Who else amongst you has this wondrous capability?

If you’re a friend of mine, and you have a Nextel, leave a comment or send me an email with your DC number. This will be fun, and no – my nerdiness knows no bounds. Nextel – Not just for construction workers anymore. But still fine for serial masturbators and dweebs.

{ 3 comments }

A Heartfelt Apology And Sincere Retraction.

by Dave on January 19, 2005

in Movies

Last week, I suggested that Michael Moore would be perfect to play Clyde the orangutan in a fantasy remake of the seminal Clint Eastwood classic, ‘Any Which Way You Can’. I have since rethought my childish barb and want to issue a full apology to Mr. Moore and any other moonbats who may have been offended by my ignorant suggestion.

My reason for the retraction has nothing to do with a new found respect for the man. On the contrary – I still think he’s an overrated, slovenly mound of stegasaurus dung. I’ve just found a more appropriate part for him, is all. They’ve cast almost every role for the upcoming remake of Charlotte’s Web – that heartwarming tale from our youth (if you’ve never read it then you obviously grew up on the moon). Have a read and see if you can remember what major character is conspicuously absent from the article.

OK – do you see where I’m going with this now? Need I say more? Someone get that fat windbag on the phone and let him know that his dream role is about to be lateraled to Louie Anderson.

{ 0 comments }