Awkward Press

Independent publishers of imaginative fiction and daily meditations on the ridiculousness of the universe.

Archive for May, 2010

R.I.P. Dennis Hopper

May 29, 2010 By: Category: News

Normally I don’t pay much attention to celebrity deaths, but since I mentioned Gary Coleman’s death yesterday I’d feel remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to Dennis Hopper. So long, Mr. Booth. I will drink a a PBR in your honor.

I'm coming St. Peter, you fuckers fuck!

R.I.P. Gary Coleman

May 28, 2010 By: Category: News

Man. You gotta feel for Gary Coleman. Dude had one shitty life, and now he’s dead. Hope things are cooler for you up in Heaven then they were down here on earth, little buddy.

Last Laugh Goes to … Mark Twain!

May 25, 2010 By: Category: Publishing

Well played, Mr. Clemens.

The Awkward Movie Challenge: I Was a Teenage Werewolf

May 24, 2010 By: Category: Greatest Hits, The Awkward Movie Challenge


According to Netflix, Mike and Jeffrey agree with each other on movies 84% of the time. In their weekly feature, The Awkward Movie Challenge, they search valiantly for that sweet 16% that results in big arguments and big laughs.


Movie monsters have always been handy vessels for metaphor. Dracula is the embodiment of sexual terror and venereal disease. Frankenstein plays on distrust of science. Dr. Jekyll is a junkie. The Creature from the Black Lagoon symbolizes man’s inherent fear of fish. But no monster is as metaphorically ripe as the werewolf. Werewolves represent the subsumption of the ego by the id… an inarticulate, self-control devoid, hairy-palmed, snarling, drooling, havoc-by-moonlight-raising id. Sound like someone you know? No? Well then you’ve never been or spent time around a teenager. By all accounts, teenagers are pimply, violent, amoral, unhygienic creatures, and no one believed this more than the adults of the 1950s. Before that decade of pre-fab housing and six-martini lunches, teens were essentially societal nonentities. They were only bit players in both everyday life and fiction. Hell, even the fucking Bible totally skips over Jesus’s teen years. This changed in the ‘50s when things like TV-watching, comic book-reading, and record-buying made teens viable demographics to advertisers. In other words: they became actual people. But the programs they watched, the comics they read, and the records they dug convinced a good portion of adults that this once invisible minority was being pumped with a disturbing dose of rebelliousness. Adults imagined a generation of kids hopped up on the dope, filled with murderous impulses by E.C. comics, and driven to unimagined heights of sexual mania by Buddy Holly records. Teenagers became enemies every bit as formidable as Joe Commie. They were all id.


This Lost Recap Is Just a Link

May 24, 2010 By: Category: Uncategorized

My ongoing application process for the U.S. Special Teams prevents me from explaining the Lost finale in explicit detail, but since you’re all hungering to know what Awkward Press thinks about the “Show that Has America Clucking,” I shall refer you to this. This is what I think about the Lost finale. How convenient that Gabe from Videogum was kind enough to break into my mind and write it all up for me! Thanks, brootha!

In Praise of Victoria Howard

May 23, 2010 By: Category: stories

A few days ago, I posted a mysterious email I received from the Cultural Affairs desk about Victoria Howards’ retirement. At first I thought this might have something to do with my application for the U.S. Special Teams (Price Fixing and Water Slides Division), but after talking to my sponsor, P. Howard (head of the U.S. Commission on Sauce-Related Injuries), I discovered that no one named Victoria Howard has ever worked for the Special Teams, and the Cultural Affairs desk is nothing but a telephone in a houseless closet buried in an unmarked grave somewhere on Culpepper Island.

But then, to my surprise, a story arrived courtesy of uber-talented F.o.A. (Friend of Awkward) and Awkward Two author Heather Clitheroe that clears the whole mess up. I particularly like the image of Ms. Howard “oozing herself between bar stools.” And so we begin.

Victoria Howard’s Retirement Card

by Heather Clitheroe

The email arrives in your inbox around nine thirty, give or take, sent from the Cultural Affairs account. Nancy wrote it; she typed it out, clicked send, and went back to work. Hello! Most of you have probably heard that Victoria Howard will be retiring from the city soon. We invite you to sign her “retirement card”. It’s located under the front counter in the main office and will be available through June 3. Thanks! Nancy. Several hours later, Nancy will send out the invitation to a small reception in the office for Victoria Howard, to take place at 2:30 on June 2, two days before Victoria Howard will be gone. (more…)

Here Is My First Movie. Discuss.

May 21, 2010 By: Category: Videos

I am not Gabe Michael.

Hey champs! I’ve been gallivanting around the United States, trying to convince a bunch of old guys that I’m a perfect selection for the U.S. Special Teams (the ones responsible for the stock market and Crocs), so I haven’t really been able to post as often as I’d like. As part of the application process, I need to show that I have multiple interests. Coincidentally, a few weeks ago I was invited by the promising young American director Gabe Michael to appear as the creepy boss in his entry for a contest sponsored by Lionsgate Films. Because in Hollywood, you don’t even have to be an actor to be an actor. If he wins the contest, he will get to direct a real movie for Lionsgate, and my nomination for the U.S. Special Teams is all but assured.

So here’s what you need to do, if you care about me or Awkward Press or anything we represent. Go to this website here and watch the film. And then comment on how good it is. Even if you think it’s garbage, comment on how good it is. Because that’s how reviews work. Wouldn’t you agree, Roger Ebert?

Also, in case you’re like, “Wait, what? This movie isn’t really a movie,” here’s the story behind it: contest entrants were asked to shoot a single scene from a user-submitted script. The script in our case is about two guys who start a business where they act like assholes in job interviews so the guy that interviews after them will come across like a king. So, no, there is not a complete story told in this 3 minute excerpt. But I think we can all agree that I am the best and most original performer who has ever been captured on film.

A Secret Code

May 19, 2010 By: Category: Awkwardness

I received this email today from a sender known simply as “Cultural Affairs.”


Most of you have probably heard that Victoria Howard will be retiring from the city soon. We invite you to sign her “retirement card”. It’s located under the front counter in the main office and will be available through June 3.



I do not know who Victoria Howard or Nancy are, but I’m convinced this is some kind of a code. She’s retiring from the city? Who retires from a city? Why is “retirement card” in quotes? Why are they giving people 3 weeks to sign this card? Someone get me 1,500 words on this email, stat!

Hot Chip, What’s Upppp!

May 10, 2010 By: Category: Music

Ugh. Screw you, Internets. I was all set to embed the video for the (fairly) new Hot Chip song and rave about how I’ve been listening to this song incessantly for the last month, and how why isn’t the most popular song in the world? because it’s so freaking good, &c. But then I searched for the video on YouTube, and the record label (EMI: BOOOOO! Didn’t the Sex Pistols murder you up in 1977? Why are you still here?) disabled the ability to embed it. Why would a record label ever do that? Isn’t the whole point of a video to promote the song? And so why would you ever deny people the ability to promote your song for free? Ugh on you, EMI. I hope you get torn apart by wild wolves.

But please, dear readers, don’t hold it against Hot Chip, the unfortunate victims of this public relations crime. Because if you do you will miss out on the hottest damn single of the year.

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Put It Down

May 07, 2010 By: Category: Videos

My wife is out of town, so I took the opportunity to record a $exxxy video. Here it is, with longwinded comments about topics that are only of interest to computer geeks following.

It’s embarrassing how many times I’ve rerecorded this thing, and I’m still pretty unhappy with it. I can do that Mariah part much better and I did in earlier versions, but the rest of the song wasn’t quite as good in the earlier versions, so I said “fuck it, kill your darlings.” And the audio sounds terrible because I had to record it with the internal mic on my new Mac, because guess what? You can’t just plug a microphone into a Mac and record with it. You have to buy some interface thingy that interfaces the plug with the plug. Which actually, we already have an interface thingy … my wife has this M-Audio firewire box that has inputs for guitars and microphones and so you plug those things into the M-Audio and then you plug the M-Audio into your Mac and voila! Now you can record your guitar in Garage Band! Only you can’t, because I just got a brand-spanking new MacBook Pro (’cause I’m a professional, natch), and apparently there’s a new kind of firewire plug and this old M-Audio thing has the old kind of firewire plug which means I can’t plug the plug into the plug without getting an adapter to interface the plug with the plug. But and also how are you going to make Garage Band your like flagship program and then make it super intensely difficult for someone to do anything with that program unless they spend a bunch of money to buy the right plugs? Apple: boooooo. (more…)