Hi NAME, it's Joe Biden and I'm Counting on YOU to read this newsletter
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Love you NAME OF DONOR,
Hi everyone its me Alex now
I didn’t know what to write about today, but I’d just read Mason Currey’s “How to solve a creative block,” and remembered the first tip:
Try doing your very worst work
First, a practical suggestion from the musician Laurie Anderson, who said in a 2016 interview, “I have blocks all the time.” She has a few methods for overcoming them, including this:
Try doing your very worst work. Do the worst song you can possibly think of. At the very least, you’ll get some idea of what your rules are. At the most, you’re going to get something that’s better than anything you’ve ever done because it has a lot of pure energy.
And so that’s what I will do. Here goes literally nothing.
My Worst Work
Farts. The sun also prizes. Hi everyone my name is Alex Reginald Dufranko and I'm here today for another edition of the New York Times. Thanks all for being with and for going without. I hope to the Gods both above and below that you read this and say "whoa nelly, what a frightening display of raw talent not unlike a diamond."
That's what my dad calls my mom, sometimes - "a raw diamond." That's not a joke or part of the 'worst work' thing, it's true. I think he means that she is pure, like the best stuff, I don't know.
I wonder if people will believe me? I wonder if people will like me? K now we're back to the worst work stuff in case you can't tell (time). Verdict's still out on whether time is real, by the by.
They're gonna change time on us this weekend, the monsters. Just when we were all getting used to the time as it was they go and say NO, change the clocks a little bit.
I'm not against daylight savings I just think we should have a little more fun with it. Like maybe half of the globe switches time and the other half does not. Then we'd be cooking with farts.
I’m obviously not gonna edit this, so lol.
I had vivid dreams last night. Big waves kept crashing over everything and, no joke, one of my testicles had made its way to my ankle. Like instead of the ankle bone, there was a testicle there. NOTE TO EDITOR: PLEASE DELETE THIS I CANNOT HAVE THIS GOING OUT TO THE PUBLIC PLEASE This was alarming to say the least, and Freud was nowhere to be found to help me understand what was going on.
This whole piece is really dumb, but also sorta fun, which also is life, at best. At worst, it's smart and not fun. There may be no greater handicap on the human race than our obsession of being smart, and that is why I'm running for the Home Owner's Association President this year.
I have an improv show tonight with my team Shell Company. We used to do a monthly show but then C*vid hit and everything stopped but now, finally after 34 long hard years, we're back baby! I love performing with those dudes and really everything about the show. It had become a great way for all our friends and community to come out, to laugh together, and then all go hang somewhere. I've missed it, that whole experience. And tonight it comes back.
If you live in Los Angeles and want to come see us, show starts at 8pm PST BEFORE THE TIME CHANGE at Stephanie Feury Studio Theater on 5635 Melrose Ave.
This piece has been bad, definitely, but has it been the worst? Not sure. There haven't been any terrible stories yet, and we all know the people come for the stories, Alex. Give em one to text home about.
Ok...what's the worst story I can think of? Well, I'm sure something happened yesterday that isn’t worth sharing here. Hmmm.....Ok here goes:
I took Wilder to get his vaccines at the doctor - flu and hep B. We got to the doctor and they put us in a waiting room and then the nurse came and gave him the shots. We then left and went to a store for him to get a treat but mostly also for me to get a treat. I got a fountain pen and he got a tiny stuffed fuzzy penguin. He then proceeded to take all the other Jellycat stuffed animals and throw them on the ground, but not before crapping his pants. It was stinky and I knew we had to get outta there. So we did. We got to the car and I changed him in the back seat. And then we went home and I put him down for a nap and then I put myself down for a nap.
Was that really the worst story? I don't know. I feel like I could do worse. Look at me, being competitive about what the worst is. I am a sicko and need professional (wrestling) attention.
K lemme try another story, even worse:
When we got home from the doctor, there was a package waiting for us at the front door. I brought it in, put Wilder to sleep, and then fell asleep myself.
K that was bad. Cuz what happened with the package? Or maybe that was actually really good, because life is not a package that you can open and see what’s inside it is more like a trash heap that’s full of hidden delights for those willing to dig.
For Sale: Baby Shoes, Got Too Small For Our Baby
I need to stop.
I was searching for photos of people with old computers and found this which, no joke is exactly what I looked like at that age!!!
This isn’t the best photo of me looking like this but it’s close so whatever:
No comment from Lauren today who had to be on set at 530am. Before leaving the house she did say “It’s Friday” and then did a little ever so slight shimmy dance which means she’s ecstatic.
The Kitchen Sink
Last week this was The Hodgepodge. This week? It’s The Kitchen Sink, since usually the phrase is "Everything but the kitchen sink" which means "basically everything lol.” Like in WWII they used the phrase to say “we threw everything at the enemy but the kitchen sink.”
But why not throw the kitchen sink at em too? I feel like it would hurt.
Well, here's all the stuff that was forgotten - the kitchen sink stuff.
THE KITCHEN IS SINKING
My good pal and hilarious writer Erica Lies wrote something for Halloween which was super funny: everyone go read it.
Jigsaw is here to murder you. But it’s your mom’s friend, Silvia, who wants to set you up with her nephew, Theodore, an accountant and sock collector. “He has a floppy body just like you,” she yells, “and the cutest special edition Big Bird stockings.” She chainsaws a portrait of you. “Middling hotness doesn’t last forever.”
READ: That Escalated Quickly
Any story that has little kids speaking in little kid language melts my heart like this one by friend of the BAT, Nicci Kadilak who also writes Nicci's Notes which I recommend BIGTIME.
We both reached the bottom step at the same time and he reached up to me for a hug. I sat on the bottom step and held him and asked him what was wrong. “What’s wrong, buddy?” I asked. “Did you fall down?”
“No,” he sniffed. “Some-body hurt me! Go inside. Too dark outside.”
A new obsession of mine is Jillian Hess' newsletter Noted where Hess dives deep into "on a particular note-taker with an overview of their note-taking life, inspiring quotes, archival photos, and meditations on what I’ve learned from their notes."
This week she focused on Houdini. His first trick:
The first, and most fundamental, of Houdini’s secrets is his birth place.
Houdini began life as Ehrich Weisz, the son of a Rabbi in Budapest. Fleeing antisemitism, the family moved to Appleton Wisconsin, where Houdini’s father would become the town’s first Rabbi. But Rabbi Weiss (their name was changed at immigration) ultimately lost this job and the family fell into poverty.
Even though he was clearly born in Europe, for the rest of his life, Houdini claimed to have been born in Appleton, Wisconsin. He does this, even in the pages of his own diary, where he writes:
I was born April 6 - 1874 Appleton Wisc.
What an absolute scamp!
Hess also highlights that Houdini sounds like a bit of an asshole, monomaniacally focused on ambition over all else.
Houdini also fills the diary with exaggerations of his importance and hyperbolic accounts of fans’ adoration. He writes:
Was cheered over and over again as they sang, ‘And will you no come back again.’
Mob waited for me + took me shoulder high. Carried me home and upstairs. Had to make a speech from the window.
Seats sold on stage & prices were doubled!! Record house!!
READ AND LEARN Choose Whatever Belief makes you take the action you want:
Pithy lil diddy (also the full name of P. Diddy) from Derek Sivers that I can't stop thinking about, particularly this part:
Beliefs make emotions. Emotions make actions.
Actions come from emotions. Emotions come from beliefs. So choose whatever belief makes you take the action you want.
Picturing one future makes you quit. Picturing another future makes you jump out of bed, full of inspiration and action. A single thought can exhaust you or motivate you.
One belief makes you act selfish. Another belief makes you act generous. One thought makes you do something stupid. Another thought makes you do something smart. What matters is the action they create. So choose the thought that works for you.
USE: Careful Words
A weird different sort of thesaurus that provides both weird alt words but quotes from old texts with the word you searched. For example, here are some quotes given for the word both:
There were two brothers called Both and Either; perceiving Either was a good, understanding, busy fellow, and Both a silly fellow and good for little, Philip said, "Either is both, and Both is neither."
Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Apophthegms of Kings and Great Commanders. Philip.
Brother, brother! we are both in the wrong.
John Gay (1688-1732): The Beggar's Opera. Act ii. Sc. 2.
Much may be said on both sides.
Joseph Addison (1672-1719): Spectator. No. 122.
This is the greatest website ever made. It shuffles you through YouTube videos which have zero views, which means you are the first person to view every single one of the videos you see (or one of the first, idk some already had a handful of views).
Three favs from this morning:
The address of this parcel of land is Panhandle Place, Pahrump NV. PAHRUMP!!!!
No spoilers on this one - the title tells you exactly what’s gonna happen and it’s great.
Jolly Scottish man teaches you how to march on parade. The world is full of wonders.
And there ya go - we’re done! We did it. YOU did it. I’m proud of you. As always, perform one of the following actions below or risk forfeiting your place in line:
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Heart below 💗 👇
Why the hell are there two #2’s above? I am going to hurl.