What's So Funny is back in Westword. You're welcome.

Well, hello there. Nice to see you again. Man, it feels like it's been forever. Hey, how did everything work out with old what's-her-name? You know who I'm talking about — that one girl with the great rack but who could never shut up even though she had that horrible lisp? I mean, Christ, every time that girl opened her mouth, it sounded like she was sucking whipped cream through a straw. Like some sort of bored Starbucks barista at a strip mall just slurping that fucking cream over and over again until you wanted to puke in your mouth. What's that? The two of you are engaged now? Mazel tov! It's like that old phrase that I always quoted to you about girls with great racks — um, like, hold on to those darlings because they're absolute dolls.

With great racks!

Me? Well, I'm doing okay, I guess. About as well as one could hope for after being kicked in the teeth by some guy in screw-in cleats, then having him gouge your eyes out with those same cleats, piss in the sockets, shit in your mouth, carve his name into your chin bone and then attach you to the back of his Ford F-150 and speed through the back alleys of Hicksville, throwing bottles of moonshine at stray cats and screaming racist threats to the moon. With no car insurance, I might add.

I know, I know, it's the oldest, most hackneyed metaphor in the book. But I'm just trying to find a clever way to tell you that I was laid off.

Me! What's So Funny! Laid off! As though I were some mere factory worker, some rough-handed half-wit, masturbating by the frogurt machine. But it's true. It appears that the economy has gotten so bad it has even started to catch up with the robust, thriving world that is print media. And so, too, the cries of layoffs were puked out of the thin-lipped mouths of Village Voice Media corporate gargoyles, and your old pal What's So Funny got the ax. I was let go two weeks ago on a Monday. I immediately headed to a bar and drank till Thursday. I awoke to a vociferous outcry from an adoring public (read: My mom texted a letter to the editor while driving) demanding an explanation for such an outrageous, inexplicable decision. But I didn't worry. I have never been one to sit back and feel sorry for myself. So I set about living life to the fullest, not sweating the small things, things like my mortgage, my car insurance or my dog — who, I swear to God, has to go to the vet at least once a month and whose food is, like, $75 a bag!

I headed down to the docks, and although my physical acumen was at times in question, I found work on a clipper ship, a drunk Irishman my captain, his stout frame festooned in tattoos of his own design — one of a hummingbird! We docked in Russia for a long stint, and after many nights of tea and conversation, I managed to bed Tilda Swinton. Eyes like the devil on that rubylocks. My crew then sank a submarine, and I returned to my native New Orleans to work in an old folks' home. But I never forgot my lovely Daisy, ably played by Cate Blanchett, dancing on her slender legs in the Big Apple. She came home to visit once and wanted to bang me, but the timing wasn't right. Then I went to NYC and she was annoying as hell and we still didn't bang. Then she shattered her leg in Paris, and pretty soon after that, the time was right for banging. And bang we did, until all of a sudden she got all old and wrinkly and nasty while I kept being a stud. Then I was a little kid and all confused and crazy, and I sat on the roof.

Fuck, that was the Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Listen, an actual outcry from the public (thank you kindly, folks), e-mails followed by phone calls, spurred meetings between myself and the editors at this fish wrap and the corporate overlords of the Village Voice Media empire. I'm now back on a freelance basis (read: less cash, no health insurance), ready to write as I've always done before, just now with a healthy mistrust for those signing my checks. Also, for reasons unbeknownst to myself, I'm now appearing in Backbeat. Negotiating has never been my strong suit, and perhaps I should have seen this coming when my contract strangely stipulated that I suck off two of the three Jonas Brothers before returning (not the little one, he still can't come, so that would have just been gross — but I digress).

It's all the same to me. I'm just happy to be back — a little shaken, but definitely back and probably stronger for it.

Now, who's got some part-time work for your boy?

 
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