Tuesday, June 30, 2009

America, the Joke's on You

Lady Liberty: OMG, Becky. Look at your butt.

Jester: You know, I've had just about enough of your lip. It's hard not to have panty lines with this outfit, LL. Okay?

LL: Whatever. Do you think that restaurant will notice that I stole their votive candle for my torch?

J: Nah, they're all fools. Get it, fools?

LL: Hmph. Your jokes are kinda lame.

J: Why do you always have to be so jealous?

LL: Jealous? Helloooo! It's 4th of July. It's my day, biotch. Who's gonna wanna take pictures with a freakin' clown?

J: Jester. I'm a goddamned jester. How many times do I have to tell you?

LL: Whatever.

J: The two of us together make a political statement on the foolish nature of American capitalism and whether or not our so-called 'freedom' is anything more than a joke played on us by an elite society of wealthy white men.

LL: Holy crap. Okay, turn around real slow and casual, okay. I think Spider-Man is checking me out. How's my hair?

J: (mumbling) Please. If anything, Spidey would be looking at me. Only I would fully understand his plight of unitard chafing.

Monday, June 29, 2009

It Takes Two

Remember this guy?

That lovely ode to the culinary arts lives on 45th between Broadway and 6th Ave. But, much like the Mona Lisa in the Louvre, I'm sure he's often plagued by crowds of people just clamoring to have a look at his elusive facial tics.

So the artist who created him bowed down to the public's wishes. And on 44th between Broadway and 6th Ave., gave us this:

You can tell by the cleaner apron and crisp white shirt, that this work dates to a later portion of the artist's Lazy Eye Chef period.

Any restaurant that is lucky enough to have this guy standing sentinel outside of it gets five stars in my book, DTS's Guide to Fine Dining and Visual Mindfuckery: Times Square Edition. I'm thinking of marketing it as an alternative to Zagat's, those commie bastards.

Friday, June 26, 2009


This is a humor blog and the purpose of it, for the most part, is to try and put a smile on your faces with all the wacky stuff that goes on in the Tourist Mecca that is Times Square.

But last night, I went home in a fog. I didn't even notice the people standing around me in the middle of the square, staring at the news ticker that pronounced Michael Jackson had died. Normally, I try to tell jokes (occasionally successfully). And although in theory it seems like it would be easy to make jokes at MJ's expense, I cannot bring myself to do it.

I wasn't born in America. In fact, I was born in Iran. Post-revolution. During the Iran-Iraq War. I didn't move to America until 1986. Then, as now, there was a lot of turmoil surrounding me in my country. But as a little girl, my memories are of my grandparents and their garden. Of going to our beach villa by the Caspian Sea. And of watching a bootleg copy of "Thriller" over and over again and constantly wearing red in honor of my hero, Michael Jackson (or Dackson as my mom tells me I pronounced it). When I finally did move to America, I think one of the most heartening things for me in this strange land was that, here too, Michael Jackson was an idol.

Even though his life turned into a sad, strange spectacle towards the end that often overshadowed his tremendous contributions to music, I truly hope that his legacy of extraordinary talents will live on stronger than that. To this day, his music is able to do only what the most profoundly perfect pop music is able to: excite feelings of pure joy and an unfettered desire to move in time to the beat. At least, that is what it does for me.

Rest in Peace, MJ. Thanks for all the amazing music and for helping to teach me as a young, young girl that there are some things which know no nationalities, no language barriers, and no boundaries.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

They're Going Global!

This blog post brings with it a heartwarming message of sorts: that no matter where in the world you are, you cannot escape from the terror of fraudulent furry people.

Photo by Left Hand Rotation via Boing Boing*

This picture was taken in Madrid, Spain apparently, about 3,500 miles away from Times Square. I like that the man behind the fake Pooh is wearing a belly shirt. It's a nice touch and probably helps him get into character, since Pooh Bear is well known for sporting length-challenged tops.

But I'm really confused about the Mickey head. If that's this dude's costume for later, does that mean he's planning on pairing it with the Pooh bottom? If not, then is there another man running around sporting only Mickey legs? Or is there something much more sinister going on here? Something involving the decapitation and possible ingestion of Patriotic Mickeys everywhere? (Gulp) I think I should step outside and warn our own TS Mickey. He may want to go undercover for a few weeks. I'm sure he has another costume he can use. In all likelihood, Elmo-related.

*A special thanks and shout-out to @twoheadedbah for bringing this photo to my attention.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Eeek! A Mouse!

It's come to my attention that I've written about TS Mickey and Minnie before (here and here for example), but I've never given you a full head-on image of what they actually look like.

Are you sitting down? Are you eating? If so, I'd chew and swallow and make sure your stomach is feeling strong before you look at this. Also, that your cubicle is soundproof and/or the boss is out to lunch, in case you get the urge to scream. I'll wait.

Okay, here goes:

I'm going to be honest. I can't actually put my finger on what makes these costumes so. goddamned. creepy. Maybe it's that Mickey's face looks like it was recently flattened by Steamboat Willie. Maybe it's that Minnie has eyelashes growing out of her eyebrows (girl, I know a good threader who can help with that). Or maybe it's just those perma-smiles, combined with Mickey's body language, that makes me think that isn't a "hahahaha" kind of laugh but a "bwahahaha" kind of laugh. You know, the kind that serial killers make when they're showing you around their perfectly lovely kitchen...that has seven tied and bound victims right underneath it.

Nice hat, though Mickey. I do like how every time I see you, you're just that much more coordinated. I'm looking forward to the embroidered blue and white star on that Christmas stocking that I'm sure is being worked on as we speak. By your enslaved, helpless victims undoubtedly.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Classy and Grassy

First we had skorts. Then tankinis.

You know what hybrid fashion phenomenon I think we're missing? You totally guessed it, Planet Hollywood. The grass bellbottom trend:

Perfect for that large cross-section of Hawaiian hula enthusiasts feeling nostalgic for the 70s. And look how well it goes with that bright pink peace sign belly shirt from Aeropostale's 1994 vintage collection and that Ricky's discount bin 'Rachel's Haircut' wig. Stunning.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The First Cut is the Deepest

I do understand what Bravo was going for with this ad. I really do:

See, traditionally, Top Chef has a knife as part of its logos. And as famous chefs, these contestants are always striving for those elusive 5 stars that signify the highest honor a restaurant could get.

Except that the way that knife-star is shaped, it really looks like it could double as an advertisement for Top Chef Mohel (that's pronounced moyle for us goys).

Each week, 12 contestants will compete at one very special bris to determine who's got the sharpest knife, the cleanest cuts, and the quietest babies. Twists will include having to perform the circumcision blindfolded, with one hand tied behind their backs, and while simultaneously whipping up a delicious pot of matzoh ball soup. Oy vey!

Monday, June 15, 2009

They're Cross-Promoting!

On Friday, I once again was lucky enough to get a glimpse at the most famous rodent couple of all-time.

Not only was Mickey sporting a brand-new jacket (I'm assuming the MJ one was in the wash), but it matched his starry clogs and was probably so uber-patriotic that the cops wouldn't dare mess with him this time.

And, Minnie, god bless her, was finally taking a stand against the age-old cat/mouse war by sporting a kitty backpack. Though I'm pretty sure that's not just any kitty. It looks an awful lot like merchandising for Generico Cantbesuedforcopyrightinfringement Cat to me! That's so sweet of you, Min! You're using your celebrity for a good cause and helping out a lesser-known tourist trap at the same time.

Long live the Brotherhood of the Fake Giant Plush People! It's so heartwarming to know that they're all looking out for one another, isn't it?

Friday, June 12, 2009

I'm a Celebrity...Drive Me Around

If you're a celebrity in New York City, it's likely that you get chauffeured around in style. For example, what if you are a beloved, well-groomed, super busy TV/radio host and you want to make sure everyone knows just how busy you are, shuttling back and forth to your various engagements and obligations?

On a more subtle note, imagine that you are the mayor of New York, and in these hard economic times, you don't want everyone to know that you don't really take the subway at all, but are of course provided private transportation:

There's a reason that van has tinted windows because you know the interior looks like something out of the billionaire politician episode of Pimp My Ride.

And then we have this:

Um...right. If that's not code for some sort of drug pick-up, I don't know what is. Either that, or someone's really trying to get the most out of their mailbox lettering kit. In which case, kudos for finally finding a place for that equal sign.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

No One's Gonna Save You From the Beast About to Strike

It's always a good day in Times Square when I have a new costumed phony to mock.

Why hello, TS Hello Kitty!

Now, I have to admit. At first glance, TS Hello Kitty's costume doesn't seem to be as much of a disaster as, say, Spongebob, Mickey & Minnie, or, Batman. Though that could have less to do with the aptitude of the costume-maker and more to do with the fact that this character already looks like it was drawn by a 2-year-old (if I disappear within the next few weeks, please investigate Mariah Carey and her camp.).

I do dig the Birkenstocks with socks though. They say, I 'm a hippie feline with a circulation problem. Or a geriatric Florida dad.

But my favorite part about this picture is, obviously, the man with the puffy vest and rattail who decided to, I kid you not, harass TS Hello Kitty. However, he did so in the politest, most Hello-Kitty-appropriate way possible. By air-pawing at her. The moment you see caught above is Hello Kitty sassily air-pawing back.

Although I prefer to see it as Kitty and Man about to break into what could possibly be the greatest version of Thriller [that does not involve zombies or Thai prisoners] ever.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Dancing with the Stools

I really love when TS gives me the gift of letting this blog go back to its roots.

Case in point:

That is a couple. Ballroom Dancing. In the Times Square subway station.

And that is a stool wearing sexy red lingerie.

Furthermore, the woman seems to be dressed in appropriate tango gear. But the dude looks like he just stepped out of a Jimmy Jazz.

I don't even actually know if the two events (stool and ballroom couple) are related, and I don't particularly see how they could be, unless...
a) that stool is a prop for the Flashdance portion of the program.
b) that stool is reserved for a very special bachelorette who is about to get one classy lapdance. In a subway station.
c) that stool is patiently waiting her turn with Jimmy Jazz. She does a mean samba.
d) somebody put that stool in a corner.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Commitment: The Hot-Button Issue

Here is a subway ad designed to bring awareness to New York's citizens that public service employees cost them less than private contractors.

A noble cause. Except that I'm wondering if this ad was proofread by a public service employee:

'Cause now I'm a little concerned about the quality I'm dealing with when these employees aren't just mere copy editors but, you know, nurses, police officers, firemen.

On the other hand, I suppose long-term commitment to one's taxpapers is pretty important. You wouldn't want to just go around using any old taxpapers willy-nilly, spreading your diseased ink everywhere, now would you? What kind of message is this sending to the children, the future CPAs of America?! What about the sanctity of 1040s?!

BTW, that little gem appeared on the same poster twice. Your taxpayer dollars hard at work...since I'm pretty sure that's what paid for this ad in the first place.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

The Evolution of Fashion

On the subway on my way home last night, I saw a kid wearing jeans.

Which in and of itself is not newsworthy. But after a few stops of having his backside in my direct eyeline, I noticed that there was embroidery on one of the back pockets.

It said NYT. And was written in what looked an awful lot like official New York Times font.

Is this what kids these days are wearing? Clothes emblazoned with the logos and abbreviations of respectable periodicals? Should I expect to see New Yorker popped-collar polos and Boston Herald converse soon?

Just to illustrate how far we've come in the world of intellectual fashion, here was the sort of thing that graced clothing when I was around this kid's age:


As Annie Potts so wisely said to Molly Ringwald in Pretty in Pink: I envy you, kid. I really envy you.

*I desperately, desperately, tried to find a picture of that Looney Tunes t-shirt that everyone, and I do mean everyone, owned back then. You know the one I'm talking about: where the entire gang is in a car, sporting bandanas, hoop earrings, and oversized pants. I have no idea how this is possible, but apparently no picture of this image exists anywhere on the internet. It was a goddamn cultural revolution for a good 45 days 15 year ago. And it was double-sided. How is there no photographic evidence?

Anyway, if anyone finds a picture of this t-shirt, they will get a virtual gold star and my lifetime admiration of their search engine prowess.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Joker

Last week, I caught a show and was in Times Square much later than usual. Do you know who comes out in Times Square at night?

No, there's no need to call child services. It's the Dark Knight himself, people.

Yes, I apologize for the quality of these photos. I had left both my camera and camera phone at home and had to resort to other, lesser means to get these. Therefore, the full effect of Batman's battiness can't be felt.

But I will supplement this picture by saying that he:

a) wore North Face gloves
b) had an armor-plate made entirely out of plastic. Nipples included.
c) made a point of fully extending his cape, bat-style, whenever anyone took a picture with him. (He did only a half-bat in the picture above because some parent decided it was okay to have their child precariously balancing on the shoulder of a caped stranger.)
d) spoke in a loud, clear voice instead of a sultry bedroom whisper with a slight hint of Welsh accent.

Based on the above, I have my suspicions that this is in fact one of those bat-impostors out to ruin the original Batman's reputation! Gotham City, beware.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Butt of the Joke

Let's see. Now if I owned a street cart, I'd probably want to decorate it. And what would I want to decorate it with?

I'm thinking something that would make people hungry for succulent street meat. Or make them yearn for a hot, salty pretzel. Something that just calls out to their stomach like a Shakespearean sonnet. That makes their mouth water. That makes their minds scream, "screw the diet! This level of gluttonous deliciousness is worth it!"

Yup, perfect.

Just a suggestion, but Weight Watchers might want to think about licensing a magnetized life-sized version of this poster and this guy. Who needs to count points when you could have such efficient deterrents of appetite standing guard right outside your very own refrigerator!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Tiled and True

The NYPD has a mini-station set up on the traffic island in Times Square. Perfectly understandable as I think this blog has made evident that policing is highly necessary in these parts.

But the police department isn't content with just serving and protecting the good citizens of Times Square. They would also like to contribute to the beautification of their surroundings with this fine example of mosaic, um, artwork.

I'm not really an art history expert or connoisseur per se, so please take the following as mere guesses on the meaning of this piece.

1) The artist did a bit of word association: Police -> Run. And then just made the second half of that analogy plural.
2) The blue represents the river of humanity which ebbs and flows in Times Square. The brown represents the desert wasteland of those alienating themselves from said river. The green is a great accent color.
3) Might this be a subversive Nostradamus-esque prediction regarding a plague of some sort? Those green blobs sure look like locusts descending on the Hudson to me.
4) The NYPD is a ray of protective light in a world otherwise filled with those scary trees from The Wizard of Oz.
5) The artist was attempting to create a photorealistic depiction of a police officer in action but the peon paid to actually install the tiles was going through his post-modern period, had just returned Pollock to Netflix.