Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Schedule Update

Here's the latest. Note the latest Pair of Singles with Dawn. As well, I have a Living article running on Friday.

Upcoming Comedy
Monday, December 3 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Monday, December 31 - Pub 99, Edmonton

Upcoming Writing
Living Articles in the Journal
Friday, November 30 - Getting Older

A Pair of Singles with Dawn Dumont appears in ed Magazine. Current article is here

Dan Brodribb's headLINES appears every Monday in the Edmonton Journal's online ed magazine. Current headLINES is here

Rollerblading Adventure Pics

Monday, November 26, 2007


I wanted to take my new rollerblades for a spin today, but it's snowing. Curse you, Alberta weather.

Here's headLINES.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Dan Learns to Rollerblade

And how, you may ask, did I find myself in a parking garage at 2am with my wrists taped together being dragged behind a van? Was it the mob? A cadre of mediocre exotic dancers who took my blog posts too seriously?

None of the above. The answer is: I asked Andrew Iwanyk for a ride home.

For those of you who don't know Andrew, well, let's just say he lives in his own reality. He's a combination of eight year old child, Harpo Marx, and Tyler Durden. Things I can count on with Andrew are absurd conversations and surreal situations mixed with the occasional burst of insight. As long as Andrew is around, I will never need peyote.

Andrew is probably one of the only people for whom I actually have a Policy, and my Andrew Iwanyk Policy is this: Know your boundaries, but beyond that, go along with whatever he suggests, because the results will usually be interesting.

The reason I needed a ride home was because the show ran late and I missed my last bus. Normally, I would grab a lift with Lars, but he was having a good time, and I was exhausted, so by sticking around, I would officially become Guy-Who-Is-Just-Hanging-Around-Because-He-Needs-a-Ride-Home...and I hate that guy. I especially hate BEING that guy.

So instead I turned to Andrew.
ME: Hey, Andrew, can I get a lift home?
ANDREW: No. But I have some rollerblades in my van. If you want, I'll tow you.
ME: Okay.

Hey, you have your boundaries, and I have mine.

So we went out to the parking lot where Andrew taped my wrists together. Then he secured the tape to the back of the van, grabbed some rollerblades from the van and stuck my feet in them.

Did I mention I don't know how to rollerblade?

Andrew got in the van and started the engine.

Maybe I should have been worried. But I didn't think the tape would hold at the van end. And even if it did, the tape was wrapped around my gloves, not my wrist, so I figured I could slip out of them if things got hairy. Plus, when Andrew tied me, I used a trick I read in a Hardy Boys book when I was seven to make sure my bonds were loose, and I kind of wanted to know if it would have worked in real life.

I figured my worst case scenario would be a few scrapes and ripping my pants. Whatever. You are not your fucking khakis.

The red lights went on at the back of the van and Andrew eased forward.

The tape did not break. What it did was, it started to unravel from my wrists.

So I grabbed it, determined to make this thing work.

And it did. I was being pulled along behind the van! Top of the world, ma!

The van continued to move slowly forward, and so did I, rolling in its wake. There was a dicey moment when Andrew turned, since turning and stopping were two things I had neglected to consider when agreeing to this plan.

But I made the turn.

The tape didn't.

When the tape snapped, Andrew braked. Me...not so much.

I continued rolling forward, flailing my tape entangled arms for balance, probably looking like a cross between the bird from The Rescuers and Roller-Mummy. I passed the van on the right (I know, I know) and finally stopped when I collided with the barrier at the edge of the garage.

Andrew drove up next to me.

ANDREW: Well, I did everything I could. I guess you'll have to rollerblade home.
ME: I appreciate you trying, Andrew.
ANDREW: See you tomorrow night, I guess.

I had skated three strides forward, when Andrew beeped his horn.

I skated back.
ME: Did you forget something?
ANDREW: I was just thinking, and I know this is probably more inconvenient for you, but if you're willing, I COULD give you a lift home.
ME: That would be great, Andrew.

After Andrew dropped me off, he insisted I keep the rollerblades, which means he's either a really cool guy, or the rollerblades actually belong to Mike Harrison. Or possibly both.

Life is good.

Andrew Iwanyk and I will both be performing tonight (Sunday, November 25) at The Comic Strip in West Edmonton Mall. Show starts at 8pm.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

You Give Blondes A Bad Name (Bad Name)

I'm almost done my latest run of shows at The Comic Strip. There are two shows tonight and one tomorrow. If you want to see me, call the the Strip. Their info is at www.thecomicstrip.ca. As of this writing at least one of the Saturday shows is sold out and the other is on its way, so don't wait until the last minute.

The shows have been a lot of fun. There's been a few different MCs over the week. KELLY TAYLOR is headlining and ANDREW IWANYK is sharing the middle spot with me. It's a show worth seeing.

In fact, the shows have been going so well, I was worried this would be another boring blog about how much I love comedy and how great the crowds were and how wonderful the staff at The Comic Strip is and bla-bla-bla. All of which are true, but make for pretty boring reading.

I was hoping something would happen to provide some drama for your reading pleasure, and wouldn't you know it, the Friday late show delivered in the form of a table full of peroxide princesses seated left of the stage.

Friday late shows are generally the rowdiest of the week, so it takes a lot to disrupt them. But these women did it: talking on their cell phones, bitching about the service, and carrying on vapid conversations at full volume, ignoring the fact THERE WAS A SHOW GOING ON.

Don't do this. Ever. I'm sure you're very cool and funny and worthy. But you are not the show. All you are doing is pissing off the comedians, the staff, and the people around you who paid good money to be entertained.

What set this table apart was that they were Hot Blonde Women. Not quite as hot as they thought they were, but attractive nonetheless. And while in theory being an Hot Blonde shouldn't matter (ugly people can be jackasses too), it does make a difference in the real world.

Because people like them give Hot Blondes a bad name.

There are a lot of advantages to being good looking. If you want to know what they are, read Survival of the Prettiest by Nancy Etcoff.

But there's also at least one disadvantage to being attractive, especially about being an attractive female, and even more especially being an attractive blonde, young female: People hate you.

Not everybody. Probably (hopefully) not even most people. But there is a significant percentage of people who will hate you, for reasons that have nothing to do with who you are, but simply because you happen to be young and blonde and pretty and female. Some are women who are jealous because they can't be you. Some are guys who are bitter and resentful because they can't have you. It's unfair, but it's human nature.

I've caught myself doing it a time or two. I try not to and I feel bad afterwards and hopefully I catch myself before I act like a jerk, but I'm not always as succesful as I'd like to be.

The stereotypes about Hot Blondes--shallow, self-centered,subsituting looks for a personality, stupid--aren't true. There's plenty of attractive blondes out there who are smart, capable and interesting.

Which is why it pisses me off when assholes like that Friday Late Show Table come along. You don't just make yourselves look bad--you're besmirching your entire demographic cohort.

There's nothing wrong with being attractive. And if that's the only thing you've got going for you, there's nothing wrong with that, either. It's short-sighted--there's always another younger, hotter blondes waiting in the wings, and you're getting older--so I'd advise you to take a few eggs out of the "I'm Hot" basket and put them in "Personality" or "Marketable Skills," but if the sun is shining, go ahead and make hay.

But if you ARE going to run with the "I'm Hot and That's All I Need" strategem, understand you are giving up the right to be appreciated for anything but your looks--because, well...because you have nothing else to offer.

Absolutely no one cares what you have to say. Least of all people trying to enjoy a show in which you play absolutely no part. If you want to be onstage, either develop a talent or sign up for a wet t-shirt contest.

In the meantime, know your role: Shut the fuck up and be pretty. Don't overreach yourself by talking. Because you'll just screw it up for yourself.

And unlike those OTHER blondes, you've got nothing else to fall back on.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Sex Show Report (Warning: May Contain Scenes of Graphic Boredom)

But first:

New headLINES here.

New Pair of Singles here.

And of course, as a reminder, I'm at The Comic Strip all this week.

Upcoming Comedy
Wednesday, November 21 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Thursday, November 22 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Friday, November 23 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Saturday, November 24 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Sunday, November 25 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Monday, December 31 - Pub 99, Edmonton

As for the Sex Show at the AgriCom...It was lame.

Had Dawn been there, we probably would have had a good time making fun of various things, but I wasn't able to get ahold of her, so I was sans-Dumont.

I was surprised at how boring I found it. I love sex, so for a while I was scared I was turning into a prude. Then I remembered I love comic book characters, but I find comic fairs boring as well. So maybe it wasn't the sex that was annoying as much as the "glaze-eyed wandering through a crowd like a cow in a cattle chute while people in weird costumes try and sell me shit."

Also, no matter how much you dim the lights to give the place an erotic glow...it's still the fucking AgriCom. So there you go.

More random thoughts:

I'm all for freedom of sexual expression, but I wonder about sex toys. Do you really want to be known as a sexual prop act? Then again, maybe that's what the ladies want: A gentleman in the streets and Carrot Top between the sheets."

Since I complained about strippers in this space previously, I do have to give credit where it is due, namely to Miss Nude Canada 2006. During her perfomrance at the sex show, she showed poise when her music didn't work, demonstrated some nifty athleticism--including some cool pole work and a few taekwon-do kicks that would make any red belt proud--and worked the crowd like Steve Rivers in buttless chaps (or if that image isn't horrifying enough--Rick Bronson in a thong). It's nice to know sex workers are reading my blog and taking my advice to heart.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Things You Only Hear In Bars (Part I)

(overheard by Dawn in the women's washroom)
WOMAN: A long distance relationship is Edmonton and Calgary, not Edmonton and China!

(overheard by me in the men's washroom)
GUY: Hey, man, I'm peeing in your pee.

(from the dance floor)
RANDOM GIRL: (after finding a bunch of unsmoked cigarettes (?!?) lying on the dance floor) Are these yours?
DAN: No. You're trying to turn me into a smoker. I heard about you guys in junior high health class. You're one of those peer-pressure people.
GIRL: (in a sleazy voice as she thrusts the cigarettes in my face) Just try them, man. Everyone's doing it.
DAN: I think I love you.

Life is good.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Dan's Mother Reviews Dan's Blog

"If you're using your blog to pick up chicks, you should dust your coffee table before putting up any more pictures of your living room."

Saturday, November 10, 2007

And People Say I Have No Social Conscience

Gentlemen, we need to take action. We need to make a serious change in the world we live in.

I'm not talking about global warming. I'm not talking about world peace or world hunger although those causes are okay too so long as it doesn't cut into Guitar Hero time.

I'm talking about strip clubs.

Last Friday I went to a strip club. I was thoroughly disguted.

Don't get me wrong. I like nudity. I don't even mind the fact strip clubs are basically a giant Money Flytrap from the cover charge to the coatcheck charge to the overpriced drinks to the VIP sections to the bathroom attendants to the...well...to the whole reason guys go to strip clubs in the first place. All they want is your money, but so what? Disneyland is no different.

What I hate is the mediocrity.

Every dancer looks more or less the same. Every one of them comes out and does the same five moves (insert Bret Hart joke here, smart marks). There's nothing interesting or cool or even anything that shows a hint of personality. All that changes is the costumes and the hair color. I don't know why the clubs don't just hire one woman and give her a few sets of clothes and some different colored wigs. For all I know, that's what they do.

I don't blame the dancers. If that's all they have to do to get your money, then why would they do anything else? Big budget Hollywood movies are no different.

No, gentlemen, I blame you for paying for this horseshit.

We call this city the City of Champions. The Oilers let us down and we do nothing. The Eskimos let us down and we do nothing.

City of Playoff-Missing Teams I can live with. But City of Substandard Nude Entertainment?

The line must be drawn somewhere.

I've done my part by raising awareness.

The rest is up to you.

The Trouble with Facebook

Just when you think humans can't complicate romantic relationships anymore, social networking sites come along and add a whole new twist to the game.

I'll tell you all about it. But first...how about some self-promotional stuff including this week's headLINES

Upcoming Comedy
Tuesday, November 13 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Wednesday, November 21 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Thursday, November 22 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Friday, November 23 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Saturday, November 24 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Sunday, November 25 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Monday, December 31 - Pub 99, Edmonton

Upcoming Writing
A Pair of Singles with Dawn Dumont appears in ed Magazine. Current article is here.

Dan Brodribb's headLINES appears every Monday in the Edmonton Journal's online ed magazine. Current headLINES is here

Where was I? Oh yeah, Facebook and its penchant for causing romantic complications.

A friend of mine told me about a pretty nasty breakup where the unhappy couple's friends became unwilling spectators for a scathing wall-to-wall exchange.

A comic I know met a couple of women after a show one night and for a joke, announced on Facebook that he was engaged to one of them. The resulting fallout...not pretty.

Josey Vogels latest column focused on her jealousy after seeing a message on her honey's wall from an ex.

Those of us in I'm-seeing-other-people-and-I'm-okay-with-you-doing-the-same phases find ourselves put to the test. It's one thing to know in theory that the person you're spending time with is seeing others--it's quite another to see the Others pictures and comments.

A couple days ago I noticed my ex- had changed her status from single to in a relationship.

It stung.

It shouldn't have. I know we did the right thing by breaking up and that a relationship with her would be unworkable for countless reasons (Okay, not countless. Probably only six or seven, but as differences go, they're pretty irreconcilable). I'm content with my current relationship status. And I WANT my ex- to be happy--and not in the saying-I-want-her-to-be-happy-through-gritted-teeth-in-a-passive-agressive-martyr sense either. I enjoyed our time together and learned a lot about myself and we parted on decent terms. As far as failed relationships goes, that's the most you can ask for.

But my heart doesn't really care that much about all that bullshit I just wrote. It's going to feel what it's going to feel when it's going to feel it. That's just the way it goes.

Funny thing. I've been writing about dating and relationships for nearly a year now. Sometimes I think I have a decent understanding about how they work and other times I think I know even less than when I started. That's what keeps me coming back, I guess.

And if things go badly, I can always blame Facebook.

Ugliest Suit in the World

Longtime readers of my column know about the my Dad's suit, affectionately known as the Green Monster. I thought it was the ugliest suit in the world.

I was wrong.

This suit I borrowed from a friend, and it is the Cthulhu of suits. Mortal eyes look upon it and go insane.

My favorite picture of the ones below is the one by the typewriter. All I'm missing is a tumbler of whiskey and I'd look like a real writer.

Upcoming Comedy
Wednesday, November 21 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Thursday, November 22 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Friday, November 23 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Saturday, November 24 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Sunday, November 25 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Monday, December 31 - Pub 99, Edmonton

Upcoming Writing
A Pair of Singles with Dawn Dumont appears in ed Magazine. Current article is here.

Dan Brodribb's headLINES appears every Monday in the Edmonton Journal's online ed magazine. Current headLINES is here

The Winner and New Champion

Sunday, November 04, 2007

K-Rock, Be Damned...What The Hell Happened to Ace DavidsonÉÉ

There are some questions that are universal. Who are weÉ Where are we goingÉ Why is blogger giving me Ès instead of question marks at the end of my sentencesÉ

But the most burning question of all is: What happened to former Monster Pro Wrestling villain, Ace DavidsonÉ

Saturday night, I found out.

Keep in mind, this wasn`t an easy decision to make. Through an unlikely chain of events I`d gotten a free ticket to a pub crawl on Friday night from a couple of soldiers on leave. I`ve never been to a pub crawl and the prospect of a school bus, free drinks, and Very Bad Girls was prety tempting.

But the lure of solving the Mystery of the Missing Heel proved too great. So that`s why instead of thowing up out a school bus window, I found myself riding through a snowstorm in a car with MPW wrestlers Heavy Metal and Young Lion Bobby Sharp.

We ended up in a dive Karaoke bar in Parkland village. If I had to describe it, I`d say it was a slightly downscale version of the bar Arnold Schwarzenegger tore up at the beginning of the second Terminator movie. Which was odd, because for a dive bar, it had the nicest, largest bathrooms I`d ever seen.

But you aren`t reading this for my thoughts on karaoke bar interior design. Get to the good stuff. Where was AceÉ

Ace was in the bar. Still towering over everyone, but instead of yelling at fans and hitting good guy wrestlers with a chain, he was singing.

He was really good. You haven`t lived until you`ve seen a six and a half foot tall biker-looking dude sing a pitch perfect version of Led Zeppelin`s `Babe, I`m Gonna Leave You.`

Actually, everyone who sang was pretty good. Better than pretty good. It was surreal. When I first walked into the bar, I thought I`d stepped into a photo shoot for White Trash Quarterly. Then I`d watch them go up one by one to sing and blow the doors off the place. I was floored.

Afterwards, we retired to Casa Davidson where I got to play Guitar Hero II for the first time. My competition was Heavy Metal.

I figured it would be a breeze. Okay, I`d never played the game before, but I could play real guitar (sort of). I was in a band for years, and Heavy Metal...well, let me tell you a story that tells you who Heavy Metal is.

Heavy Metal is a pro wrestler. He wrestled on Friday and the finish of his match was to end with him being ``hit in the head`` with a title belt. Unfortunatley, what with one thing and another, when the finish of the match game, Heavy Metal forgot to put his hands up so getting `hit in the head with a big metal belt` ended up with him--well--being hit in the head a big metal belt.

Metal was actually cut open from the impact, but decided since the lemon was there, he might as well make lemonade. He went to do his post-match interview intending to show off his bloody new cut.

Which turned out to be not as bloody as he would have liked for dramatic purposes. So Heavy Metal decided to make the injury worse by...and I swear this is God`s honest truth--punching himself in the face. Several times.

And when that didn`t work, he got my good friend and former toughman competitor Ripper to punch him in the head as well. Several more times.

And when THAT didn`t work, he resorted to tearing the cut open with his fingernails.

So I was pretty confident I could beat him at Guitar Hero II.

I was wrong.

Do you know how embarassing it is for a former semi-professional musician to be outplayed on ``Shout at the Devil`` by a guy whose main job requirement is the ability to look good in spandex and fall off a ladderÉ

Then again, maybe I should have known better. He does call himself Heavy Metal after all.


I was going to write a blog about my Halloween, but Dawn covered most of the high points here.

The only thing I have to do is thank my friends and neighbours Adam and Shelley for loaning me the costume. There`s nothing like being friends with gamers when you need to put together a last minute costume. Or build a trebuchet.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Heaven and Hell

Saturday night I went to the bar. The first thing I saw when I walked in was a pirate.

Shit. Halloween.

A room of pimps, catwomen, cowboys, giant chickens, and anything else you could imagine, kind of like the afterlife waiting room in Beetlejuice. And me, dressed in jeans, a button-up shirt and Chuck Taylors.

A lesser man would have slunk off. But I had the third period of a one-sided hockey game to watch.

All of the bar staff were dressed either as devils or as angels. At first I thought they were just really unoriginal, until I realized it was a heaven and hell theme. Which explained the white fluffy shit around the entrance and the fake fire by the bar.

Anyway, a guy ended up recognizing me and I joined him and his friends for a tequila shot, which quickly became another tequila shot, a series of gin and tonics, and yet another shot of something I didn’t identify--it was minty tasting though.

One of this guy’s friends was from Mexico and I decided to show my cultural diversity by speaking to him in Spanish. These are the Spanish words I know. “Ay Caramba.” “Vaya Con Dios.” “Adios.”

It was a short conversation.

Afterwards, we ordered more tequila shots. “Drink this,” he told me. “It will teach you Spanish.”

Ole! Viva Multiculturalism.

I later tried to hook up with a woman dressed as Uma Thurman from Pulp Fiction. She was drunk; I was drunk--what other commonalities do you need?--but I lost track of her on the dance floor.

While I was dancing a woman appeared in front of me by magic. A moment later I felt something soft and warm grinding against my body from behind. Another woman! Two more closed in from each side, boxing me in. It was like an armored car robbery with boobs.

This happens to me on dance floors from time to time, and I’m never sure how to respond.

This night, I said: “Umm…not that I’m complaining, but I think you got the wrong guy.”

They gave me funny looks and danced off.

I may have self-esteem issues.

Upcoming Comedy
Monday, November 5 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Tuesday, November 6 - New City Lounge, Edmonton
Wednesday, November 21 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Thursday, November 22 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Friday, November 23 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Saturday, November 24 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton
Sunday, November 25 - The Comic Strip, Edmonton

Upcoming Teaching
Dating for Dudes (three Tuesdays, starting November 13)
Learn more at www.metrocontinuingeducation.ca

Upcoming Writing
Living Articles in the Edmonton Journal
Friday, November 2 - The Power of Not Now

A Pair of Singles with Dawn Dumont appears in ed Magazine. Current article is here.

Dan Brodribb's headLINES appears every Monday in the Edmonton Journal's online ed magazine. Current headLINES is here