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July 11, 2012
Metallica, Inc.

Dear James, Kirk, Lars, Rob, and the rest of the Metallica crew and management:

Hi. I see on your Facebook page that more than 26 million people are Metallica “likers”, which is an astounding number, and an indication that you must get hundreds, if not thousands of letters a week. I hope that this one makes it.

Many, many huge congratulations to you all for sticking with your dreams and making shit happen. Metallica is one of, if not THE best rock and roll bands in the history of music. And that, my friends, is an amazing thing when you put it into historical context based on where we all came from.

Note that I did say we. Like yourselves, I grew up California, in my case in the Bay Area. When I was 14 years old, my brother Ody, who was three years older, started telling me about this band called Metallica that was playing around Oakland and The City. Every chance he could, he would go see you guys play. I still remember the ticket stubs that stuck out of the border of the mirror on his desk like paper spokes. Metallica, Metallica, Spastic Children, Metallica, Primus, Slayer, Grateful Dead (!) Metallica….so on.

He knew about you cats because he happened to be a DJ at the only heavy metal radio station in the Bay Area (that we knew of), 90.5 KVHS FM out of Concord – actually, out of Clayton Valley High, to be geographically factual.

You see, KVHS was a high school and college radio program at a particularly metalheaded high school right smack dab in the middle of, or perhaps right there on the screaming, bleeding, serrated blade tip of the Metal Revolution of the mid-80’s.. Mark Osegueda (singer/band leader for Death Angel) was Ody’s CLASS PRESIDENT fer chrissakes! He was also our next door neighbor. It was undoubtedly a cool time and place to grow up, and your music was one of our major guides and sources of inspiration (and good/bad hearted debauchery!)

I had the good fortune of following my brother into the radio program at KVHS when I was a sophomore at CVHS. By then, Metallica was a staple. You were actually FOUGHT over since DJ’s could, by rule, only play the same band every other show. I personally watched a fist fight occur outside of our studios between a DJ who “slipped” one of your songs in as he was about to get off the air and a DJ who had based his whole show around the theme of Fire and was going to lead off with Fight Fire with Fire.

When I joined KVHS, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to be in radio – to be a broadcaster, and they gave me that avenue, that opportunity: To help people rock to their fullest. Thankfully, I was surrounded with a whole bunch of likeminded folks there. EVERYONE at KVHS wanted the same. And for years, KVHS trained countless professionals how to get into and succeed in the business. Our alumni includes actors, DJ’s, station managers, TV personalities, musicians, sound men and women, and hundreds of other media professionals.

I am writing to let you all know that KVHS is being killed off by unrighteous bureaucrats of the Mount Diablo Unified School District. Clayton Valley High School, where KVHS has been located since its inception, has turned into a charter school, and subsequently both the support and funding for the program was pulled and all options for moving the station to another school were dashed – called “too expensive.”

I do not believe that it is presumptuous , nor is it an exaggeration to say that in some ways, the success of Metallica as a band was spurred on by the wholehearted support of both KVHS and its personnel as they/we moved into the professional ranks. We loved and still love your band and what you stand for.

I wonder if the band might care to comment, intervene, or otherwise remark upon this development in some way? Things are that dire. There is talk of selling off the frequency. The Wilson’s, who have administered the program for many years, have already been given their walking papers. In no way do I intend to guilt you all or anything of that nature – but rather to bring to your awareness a situation that I think, and many of my colleagues think, is just a G$^#%$d shame. And, importantly – something that should absolutely be avoided and corrected if at all possible.

I, and I am sure all of my colleagues, wish Metallica many years of continued success. You are all inspirations for every single rocker who ever lived. Keep shredding! Long live Metallica, and long live, even if in our memories, The Rock, 90.5 KVHS FM in Concord, California.

If I can help with any of your questions and concerns, please feel free to have anyone in the Metallica organization contact me.

Many thanks for taking the time to read this letter and to consider the request.

Corby Anderson

Director of Sales and Marketing

RadioCMC

Colorado Mountain College

1402 Blake Street

Glenwood Springs, CO 81601

 

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November 29, 2011

Steve Jobs, (dec’d)

Former (?) Chairman of the Board

Apple Computer Inc
1 Infinite Loop
Cupertino, CA 95014

Steve,

So… You died after all. God that must piss you off from here to eternity. Hell, it pisses me off every day, and (sadly) I didn’t even know you. It is sincere fact when I say to you  (assuming that you are still checking email) that the entire world gasped right along with you upon the exhalation of  your last living breath.

Every nook of humanity (*at least 87.221% of the Earth’s population that has access to electricity, according to one scientifically made up study) shuddered at this particularly grim Reapers toll.

Research shows that the remaining 12.779% of digitally-deprived humanity experienced a pronounced, instantaneous mass mood shift that was reportedly attributed as both “mysteriously moving” by Keer Deng, Sudan’s Dinka tribe elder spokesman) and “waasaayyyyy freaky, man” (Riverrock Morningwood, America’s Rainbow Family tribe elder spokesman.)

I guess my point here in enumerating admittedly circumspect data on the worldwide impact and heavy-hearted reaction to your death is to communicate directly to you,  perchance that you have not heard elsewhere — and that somehow, some miraculous way this channel remains post-physically opened — that It All mattered. Very, very much so, It mattered., Steve. Far more, I suspect, than any of us even realized it would, and will.

Every sleepless, brain-twisting, perplexingly distant, far-seeing thought that you so painstakingly fathered. Every hurtful, unfair, soul-chilling setback that you experienced, and every waking moment sacrificed to your work was worth it. Yours is a legacy of profound creativity and unwavering drive to move humanity forward through smarter, more useful technology.

Something tells me, though, to suspect that you know this already. And not just through your own late-life, clear-minded assessments of your personal achievements, but actually post-mortem. I was not stunned in the least when I heard that your last living words were “Oh wow…oh wow…oh wow.” Even in the grips of death you expressed an inspiring excitement about the future.

Now that you are up there, literally in The Cloud, I wonder if you might take a moment to consider my Earthly dilemma? What the hell? Maybe, as broadly wired as you were, you discovered a way to keep an ear to the ground. If so, maybejustmaybe you’ve still got some pull down here…In my thinking, seeking favor from a dead genius’ ghost is better than kneeling at any unfounded pew.

I sent you a previous note back in August, detailing the situation that I am still enduring, which, of course, you never answered. How could you? You obviously had more important things to attend to than a random, slightly obtuse letter. For that I don’t blame you at all. It was a fluky, Tebowian long shot anyways to attempt to compel you to help me during your Bad Decline when I frustratedly exclaimed that I “need all of this great shit to work.”

Then, as now, all of my Apple products lie lifeless on ashy shelves. In particular, Blister, my invaluable Macbook Pro laptop from which all income-producing creative work of my own emanates, sits dormant and heartless. The computer repair lady in Glenwood Springs called me at 11 pm on the Sunday night of a holiday weekend to tell me that Blister was not indeed brain dead, as was feared, but lacked a functional Logic Board. After she lithely ducked my pre-prepared volley of insults and accusations that I reserve for anyone with an unregistered number who dares ring me after the second scotch sets in, Bytemark Dana relayed to me that the expensive machine that houses my dream was built too hot to handle its own creative potential.

Metaphorically, I can easily associate with her oddly-timed professional assessment of Blister’s Main Drag: there are not enough fans to keep its internal burners from permanently nuking wiring and circuitry vital to sustaining The Work.

Thanksgiving was bitter sweet this year for the Rocky Mountain Anderson’s. It was exactly a year ago that I drove to my job as Media Director at a struggling marketing company in Chicken Scratch, California only to find that my position – indeed, my entire department (*Population One) had been summarily executed over the holiday weekend.

On the way home from the sad exchange, I decided to take my severance check (the unused vacation time that I had not yet exhausted) and buy a plane ticket to North Carolina, where my wife and I had just decided the day before during a romantic holiday retreat in a toasty yurt at Treebones along the Central California coast that we would hastily move to out of self-preservation if exactly this scenario played out.

Only, when I arrived home, my trusty Macbook refused to boot and thus I could not research plane tickets online. I was driving to the computer repair store when our realtor called to tell us that our only earthly investment, our house in Colorado, had just been foreclosed on by the scum sucking, greedy whore bastards at Wells Fargo Bank Home Mortgage. THEN, of all things, in that same two hour window, my temporary benefactor, Don Bean called me and told me that he wanted me to write and produce his globe-trotting cooking show, news that caused my wife and I to rejoice in our karma, timing and luck, and ditch the plan to move suddenly to North Carolina. But rather to bail out of our Monterey dune-side digs out to the unknown grit and dour economy of the lesser Modesto region. But that is a whole ‘nother story, Steve.

A year later, after The Lodi Disaster played out in all of its harsh nerve butchery, I find myself happily living back in a heavenly log cabin in the clutches of a steep mountain valley in Emma, Colorado. Happy, I say, to be in the mountains again, in a safe place where people know me and have faith in my potential. Unhappy, however, at the continuing plunge of my professional career.

Once again, I am laid off, this time for the seemingly endless fall mountain town “off season”, with no net other than a sympathetic landlord, but he is heavily armed and suffering daily from severe sinus discomfort, and even in his kindest moments I sense a man who might have a firm limit to deadbeatitis.

My point is that now is the perfect opportunity to charge ahead with my dreams, Steve. While I sit here painfully quiet in this groaning cabin, scribbling away, waiting for the next paying day of production work, I could be launching the company that I have long-dreamed of running! I could write copy, manage social media communications for at least ten local businesses that have expressed interest in my abilities to help them reach the networked customer, make stunning videos, record voice over narration for a bevy of friends who need audio work done. I could manage special events for customers who need a hand with making their special suarree turn out to be memorable and effective. I can help to create and publish websites, magazine articles, books, even APP’s. You like those, don’t you? APP’s are the way, eh?

Anyways, enough with the VC pitch. To be honest, I’m not even sure if I know how to do all of the things listed above. But if anything, I am a man of earnest effort and steadfast optimism, except when corralled into a Ludditian, cashless corner, which seems to be the case now.

Thanks to the layoffs and the foreclosure, my credit is shot full of more holes than the argument against legalizing marijuana, so any designs on borrowing start-up capitol are grounded in the reality that I will likely have to type, shoot, edit, and publish my way out of this hole to a position of leverage.

And that is why, now more than ever, I need this goddamned voodoo machine that you so elegantly conceived to spin up once more in glorious ease and remarkable capacity. Bytemark Dana tells me that a new Logic Board is going to run me $850, plus the costs of her labor. For that kind of scratch, assuming that I had it or could attain it in time to have a positive effect on my all-American dream of viable business ownership, I could buy and equip a new PC to do my bidding. But then I’d have to struggle through all of those inane virus updates, drunken snail speeds, random file folder disappearances, and general non-Apple wiggyness that I had hoped to place well in my past.

Well, that is all. There are fresh brutalities to review, and a Heisman debate to attend to, so I had better wrap up. I do hope that somehow you are still receiving incoming messages in one form or another, and that this letter is no empty lament. If there is one thing that we’ve learned from your premature passing, it is to not waste a moment of precious time.

Here is to hoping that you’re incarnate isn’t snuffed in utero by the blunt end of some bored Oakland cop’s truncheon. Let me know if you get this.

Corby Anderson

0300 Vagneur Lane

Cabin A

Basalt, CO

81621

P.S. Apologies on the uncertainty of your job title. Not sure if they let you keep that ad infinitem.

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Artist Rendering of Goat Sucker Attack in Dumb Ass Canyon

October 29, 2011

Chaco Inc

Re-Chaco Repair Dept.
39955 Hayden Road
Paonia, CO 81428

Dear Sandal Repair Dept:

Enclosed is one (uno)size 11,  left-footed Chaco sandal, presumably a Z/1 Vibram Unaweep model, though I have no way of identifying it with absolute certainty as there are no identical matches listed on your web-site. While my own research skills lack the sleuths cunning and doggedness, I have little doubt that your well-trained people will know immediately what version of your shoe I am actually sending you.

As a new Chaco owner who for decades prior has purchased, worn out and discarded a stinky series of competitor sandals, I am pleased to hear that your company endeavors to repair even the most dilapidated of your products. It shows a real commitment to customer service — not to mention corporate fortitude — to tell the world to send back their grungiest thongs for a refreshing renewal.

Please so to it that the tattered foot-bed on the enclosed huarache is replaced. The sole was nearly lost as well, but appears to have weathered an unnerving, vicious attack relatively intact, save for a chilling sliver torn from its port side.

I shudder to even re-tell the story, such is the crippling power of the primal fear that has infested my mind since that awful day in Dumb Ass Canyon this past September, and request that anyone privy to this letter be sworn to an oath of secrecy in order to protect my identity. I wish, as ever, to remain out of the media’s white-hot glare, despite the extraordinary circumstances that I have endured. Also, there is a book deal in the works, and I’d hate to fucker that one up, right!? I mean, a $110K advance is nothing to sneeze at anymore. Better yet, I didn’t even have to lose an arm like Ralston. Just one measly pinky toe is all, and only the nail section at that. But what the hell? I’ve got nine more to work with, and my balance seems to be coming back quickly as I adapt to life as a victim of supernatural evil.

Hopefully you have a bible present in your repair shop…or a Koran or Torah. A copy of Elk Hunter will work in a pinch. Anything to swear an oath upon is fine. Once that small matter has been attended to, please proceed to the next paragraph of my letter:

It was a typically gorgeous September day in Southern Utah. The noon sun bore down in comforting waves of glorious warmth – one last reprieve for summer after a recent, all-too-familiar cold snap had gripped Western Colorado in an icy clutch. I was solo hiking a little known side canyon within the Grand Gulch, moving fast and light, as is my custom. I was also moving backwards. Blindfolded, and naked, save for my new Chacos. WTF, you might ask aloud. I’ll give you that. I ask myself the same question at least 17 times a day, especially days when I am practicing my newly developed sport of Republicanyoneering ((R)© ™ etc.) The jag is to move downhill and backwards as quickly as possible while blind to your surroundings and the implications of your own nudity to those that might be impacted by your actions. A slight variation of the sport requires one to hike in a similar fashion, only now carrying a fully automatic M4 assault rifle strapped to their pasty white chests while reciting the United States Constitution in Spanish. I call that one the Tea Paradox (also registered).

My travels in D/A Cny. were going along swimmingly until I rounded the crux of Climax Bend and stepped unknowingly on the tail of a creature so vile, so terrifyingly hairless and beady eyed that for a moment I thought that I’d trammeled on Terry Bradshaw. A spine-straightening shriek pierced the calm canyon air, bounding off of the steep walls of my hidden oasis, echoing out to the great nothingness beyond.

I had pinned under-Chaco a creature that I could now sense had a strong, peculiar stench, smelling faintly of a combination of fine, peppered chèvre and elderly ball sweat. The demon writhed and shrieked some more in increasing octaves as I attempted to take my blindfold off. My hands were frozen, though. The Fear had overcome my nerves, and I stood helplessly locked into place. That was when I felt the wiggly thing lunge, ripping its bony tail from under my foot one weird lumpy vertibrete at a time. Everything was happening in slow motion. I mentally pinched myself to make sure that I wasn’t just dreaming, hoping that I was. I could tell that the beast was free from my foot and could hear its soul-quaking guttural snarling as it encircled me. Then it struck. A God-awful crunching noise followed a sudden flurry of activity to my left side. I could feel a cool breeze waft across my left foot in places that I had never previously felt the sensation of air. A gulping sound came next, then, I swear to Ullr, an unhealthy sounding burp.

Every hair on my body – joined in horror, it seemed, by the ghosts of those brave soldier follicles that had suffered from years of attrition – stood on end, screaming their tiny, silent brand of bloody murder. Of all of the ways to go out, I thought: Being slowly consumed from the ground up by some unseen varmint while standing stiffly naked in a remote canyon of Utah was not how I imagined my bucket would ultimately be kicked.

You know the sound that you make when you’ve eaten something altogether unpalatable and are in the process of spitting the undigested remnants into a napkin? Sort of a “BLECHK” sound. It’s hard to type accurately, but you get the gist. Well, that’s the sound that the critter made next – an utterly disgusted, deeply offended sound, followed by the unmistakable gated “loogie” note of something substantial passing through pursed lips and being spit onto the ground with great force.

Something about the anticlimactic tone of this noise snapped my deep paralysis at exactly that moment. Instinctively my hands shot up to my face, yanking my mask down. Channeling my inner William Wallace, I wheeled to my left to face my tormentor, terrified beyond words, but inspired now to fight for my life…what is left of it. All that I caught, however, was a split second glimpse of a fleeing genetic monstrosity. Grey, wrinkled skin — shorn of even a single guard hair — hung loosely from a nightmare frame – half coyote, half kangaroo, half wingless bat – all protruding spine, whip tail and bloody snout, I watched disbelievingly as that fabled goat-sucker himself, El Chupacabra, sprinted nimbly away around the boulder-strewn gut of Dumb Ass Canyon.

Later, while the steady-handed surgical team at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, Colorado, reattached the tip of my left pinky toe,  I was told just how lucky I was to be alive to receive the painful barrage of anti-rabies vaccine. According to Dr. Ledbetter, only the tough rubber sole of my Chaco sandal and the three day foot funk that I’d worked into a putrid lather on the course of my walk saved me from certain Chupacabration.

So, surely you can see the sensitivity of my story. Thank you for cooperating in my request to keep this one under wraps until my book, “Attack of the Goat Sucker in Dumb Ass Canyon”, and the film version “Dumb Ass” are released. In the meantime, I am told that I can saw my cast off in two more weeks, which should be ample time to get my wounded sandal repaired. My mending left foot awaits its partial savior in eager anticipation of their soleful reunion.

Sincerely,

Corby Anderson

0300 Vagneur Lane

Cabin A

Basalt, CO 81621

PS –Turns out that my detective skills are improving before my very eyes: I’ve just discovered through intense study of the box label that the true brand of sandal that I am sending you for repair is apparently called a Yampa Z1 Vibram (Edgy).

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August 29, 2011

Steve Jobs
Chairman of the Board
Apple Computer Inc
1 Infinite Loop
Cupertino, CA 95014

Steve,

Congratulations, such as it is, on your recent retirement from your veritable position as the Main Brain behind Apple. The accomplishments of Apple Computers under your heady stead are bogglingly numerous, monumental, and, perhaps most important, beneficial to humanity for generations to come. You moved us forward, kicking and screaming at times, but onward toward that great maw of science fiction that we now see as our reality.

I sincerely hope that your retirement is more for your own peace of mind and to more keenly (if possible) focus and facilitate your creative process than it is for health related reasons, as has been speculated. In either case, and speaking for my brethren in human skin, whom even the nastiest of Regressives would have to agree, we wish you many great and thoughtful days ahead.

I write to you out of a gnawing and mounting sense of personal frustration. I have been an avid user of Apple products for years, both professionally and personally. The first keyboard that I ever drooled upon was a Macintosh. I wrote my first love letter on an Apple 2. If my skills of perverse persuasion had been anywhere as effective back then as the machine which manifested the delivery of my deepest teenage desires, it is a certainty that I would have had a much more satisfied high school existence. A transplanted North Californian at the ripe age of 8, in 1980, I literally grew up with Apple as my tangible image of good business, and yourself cast in the role of our technical Moses. As a professional video producer and writer, your inventions and subsequent products have made my career (such as it is) more user friendly, creative, and portable. Until recently, that is.

Despite my best efforts to lead a clean life, with steady piles of veges and fruits, I am unfortunately enduring some sort of rotten Apple syndrome of late. I must have acquired some sort of reverse-Midas touch to have tapped into such awful technical juju, but I can currently count at least six key components to my personal and professional life as deader than Al Davis’ facial nerves.

Every single high end digital device that I own with an Apple serial code tattooed on its cool, contoured underbelly is currently miserably, haplessly, and (to me) tragically broken. The little green lights that have warmed me with their constant, productivity-promising presence for all of these years have all gone terribly dim. No workie workie.  None of it. Not my constant companion – my Macbook Pro, my glorious iPhone, my iPods, slim white keyboard, or even the moderately form-fitting SuperMouse. It’s all broken. And damn it all to hell, Steve, I need all of this great shit to work.

“Get it fixed, dude” you might well say. “We’ve got great techs, stores FULL of them, in fact.” All well and good, unless you are living check to check, indeed, job to job as I have been since the bottom dropped out in 2008.  I’ve paid twice now to have the bastard motherboard of my professional central nervous system – my Mac Book Pro repaired. It’s the heat, they tell me. Metaphorically, I like to think that the battery can’t handle the intense fire that my creativity produces, or some such. In truth, the beast was maldesigned to handle the regular work of a modern multimedia professional. There aren’t enough fans, apparently. Ironic, in that you could say the same about my efforts as a writer. Nor is there any income to repair my basket full of bruised Apples.

I have now had three such failures in the past year, and each time it has crippled my productivity to the point of inviting the slothful dogs of sustained poverty directly into my cabin office. My second iPhone (the first one was stolen from the Monterey Rec Center. We tracked the thieves via Mobile Me until they wiped the phone and replaced my contacts with a series of Nortenos gang symbols before my very eyes) stopped working when a truly embarrassingly small amount of water touched the screen. That was months ago. Though urged not to by your support people, I performed delicate neurosurgery to the bloody thing in the glum light of my neighbors tack shed and somehow gave it a new battery, as recommended on the boards, but no avail. I still wound up stuck perpetuitously in some godforsaken logo loop. The iPods all died separately in consecutive Februaries. My wife refuses to buy anything with an Apple tag for Christmas anymore because of it. She thinks that we are jinxed or cursed, as if there is a difference.

I write to you because I am beyond wits end. I can’t even see a trace of wit from here. It is possible that you might be both the only person who cares to help a working schmuck like me, and simultaneously do something positive for our economy right now. It’s an easy proposition, Steve:  Fix my shit, and you fix America. My livelihood depends on this pile of gorgeous garbage working properly. Without it, I simply cannot do my job, nee cannot even look for a job, and thus in time I wind up back on the streets alongside the millions of other workless fools. America needs jobs like Michelle Bachmann needs Jesus H. Christmas himself to stump for her doomed campaign of brain dead logic and civil indifference.  And of all things, I’d think that you’d be interested in that. They don’t call you Mr. Jobs fer nothing, do they?

I’ll end with a quote that seems applicable, while admitting that I have no bleeding clue who the author is. Seems like a right minded chap, eh?
“Fix your eyes on perfection and you make almost everything speed towards it.”
-William Elery Channing

Beep,

Corby Anderson
0300 Vagneur Lane
Cabin A
Basalt, CO
81621

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Subject: Moronic Drivel on a Grand Scale

To: Bleacher Report Editors,

Bleacher Report Editor…Ha! Now there is an oxymoron if I’ve ever seen one…

Just how in God’s name did you get your pitifully inept website to appear as featured content in legitimate news operations? What scandalous acts of defile have you endured down on your scarred knees to allow you to stand now on those wobbly legs?

Your founder Zander Freund, in all of his megalomaniac glory, has unleashed a horrible disease on the journalism industry, and now due to your inexplicable market penetration is threatening to push aside legitimate sports news and dumb the whole sports writing industry down to simpltonian blogger backwash.

For example, just tonight I was perusing a fairly respectable, historically relevant hub of sports information – the San Francisco Chronicle, whose website is called SFGate.com. Although, by the looks of it, there is no gate keeping going on in that editorial department either. No, no, and no once more. The lights are all green there. Proceed willy nilly into the breach, they urge. The gates are down and every two bit chump who knows how to peck and sneer is jamming their hot-breathed opinionated insanity down our unsuspecting eyeballs via your unmonitored channel.

Hell, you’ve got a featured “syndicated” writer positioned in their main story listings espousing that the Rams would and should ditch this years Rookie of the Year, hot shit all-world quarterback Sam Bradford next year due to his “injury proned (sic) shoulder”, after the guy sharply took every snap of his rookie season – a remarkable feat for any quarterback in the history of the game. Meanwhile, you man goes on to claim that the Rams will look to move BACK to LA next year, which is about as legitimate a claim to make as if I were to pronounce myself the Emperor of The Internet .  Worse yet, he had the unfuckingmitigated gall to write back to people who were leaving comments under his story pointing out the err in his entire thought process. The fool was challenging them each with the most fucked up, slacker logic I’ve ever heard! “We’ll just have to wait and see, won’t we?” he said. The nerve of that jackhole!

You’ve got to get this thing under control at once! Dear God, if there was any justice in the world at all, you’d fire your entire staff immediately and with no quarter given. Send them out with the recycling. Bar the doors. Turn off the lights and hide under your desk when they come slouching to your offices, spilling bits of Doritos and hardened cheddar shreds from their tangled, sideways beards. Oh, they’ll moan and bellyache plenty about the injustice of it all – they’re writers, after all. Or so they claim. But whatever you do, do not take sympathy on these clowns. Crack that door even a sliver, and they’ll be all over you like Lamar Odom in a candy store. You won’t know what hit you. Then, the next shoe will predictably drop. They’ll demand even more freedom to immaturely rant, misinform, and libel. And we, the reading public, will suffer on, thinking all the while that our trusted news outlets are feeding us legitimately cracked tales.

Look man. I can’t tell you how to run your business. I’m guessing that nobody can. Judging by the size of your golden balls, you’ve obviously convinced somebody rather important somewhere that giving legitimate real estate to amateur sports writers in a national channel, and not paying them for their work so that you don’t have to exercise any common sense editing practices was a good idea. But I’ve been around the block, sirs and ladies (if any,) and I’ve got to say, I’ve never seen a more discrediting embarrassment in the journalism industry than your sports “stories” being available (ney, promoted!) on real news sites.

This world that we’re living in is bizarre enough without the likes of you people mucking up the last entrenchment of decent entertainment we’ve got…

Corby Anderson
Marina, CA

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December 11, 2010

Manager of Holiday Card Program

Wells Fargo Bank

Consumer Relations

700 Billion Twisted Way

Irvine, CA 91100

To whom it may or may not concern,

‘Tis the season of bright cheer and boundless mirth, and in the spirit of that holiday joy, I would like to thank Wells Fargo for the thoughtful holiday card that arrived in my mail slot on this pristine California winter morn.

The card was from your home mortgage department. Its sender was the very same agent who showed such natural resourcefulness and creative wherewithal when he helped my wife and I purchase our first home a few years ago.

Like many Americans at the time, we were unlikely buyers, especially when reflected on now, from a literal, and emotional distance. My Good Lady and I first spied each other in the midst of a frantic bar fight in a now defunct cowboy bar which, prior to its conversion into a redundantly supplied art gallery, bore the appropriate name of “Ship of Fools”, in Carbondale, Colorado. Once the brouhaha was sorted out and our dating commenced, we realized that our common dream was to step up from our rental-bound ski bum existences into the realm of home ownership, which, thanks to your financiers and a lot of hard work, we were able to do, if barely.

Neither of us had any savings or even enough money to cover the earnest. Her credit was as bad as a year old quart of milk, and mine was only slightly less sour. But together, somehow, we did it! We found The Way, and made our home as happily as two youngsters can.

And so it would follow that in terms of fostering a sincere customer appreciation and good marketing for future considerations, it would be a wonderful thought to send a card wishing well the holidays of such satisfied customers. “The holiday is a special time,” the inner fold of the card reads. “May the joys of the season warm your heart and light up your home,” it continues cheerfully, ending in a firm corporate tag line whose font rides atop a galloping team of ponies that pulls a speeding wagon, informing the recipient that “Together we’ll go far.”

Which is all quite fine and certainly dandy, except for one small oversight on the part of your office. We don’t technically own our home anymore. You do. Just last Monday – coincidentally just 30 minutes after my having been laid off for the second time in two years, I was called by my Realtor, who informed me that my Carbondale house which had warmed us so for so long, was officially foreclosed on by your liquidation department and the local courts. (By the way, that’s quite a name that the thinkers upstairs have saddled your foreclosure team with!) Apparently, the attempted short sale which was in the works was just too short, and your patience with our circumstance too thin. There is a blue joke in there somewhere, but I am loathe to summon it here and now, at this late hour by the unsatisfying cold yellow flicker of the Sterno can that lights our ancient, lobotomized Winnebago where we now call home.

And while I am not sure exactly how it fits into my story, I am nonetheless compellingly reminded of a favorite quote from a TV show that I admire, Mad Men: “One minute you are on top of the world, and the next, a drunk secretary drives you over with a lawnmower.”

There is something to be said about proper timing. Syncronized correctly, and even the foulest of deeds can be assuaged by a balance of good will and a modicum of strong reason. Michael Vick is the perfect example of that. But conversely, bungled badly, and timing can be a major bitch – a real seedy whore with a heart as black as the coal that will fill our stockings this season.

Please don’t take this as me trying to tell you how to do your jobs. God knows that I am no expert in the inner workings of a corporate public affairs office. But it seems logical to me that a simple cross-referencing of those customers who own their actually still own their homes along with a survey of those suddenly former customers whom your company has snatched their homes away from would easily stop the sending of such poorly timed mailings like the infuriating, depressing one that I received today.

It’s just a bit of friendly advice. You can leave it, or take it to your bank. And while I ­­­­­­­­­­­­am pulling all of my remaining Wells Fargo accounts and giving them over to someone who really seems to care about America – the Bank of China, and thus will not be riding shotgun in your funwagon, maybe your marketing department and your liquidation department can get together under the mistletoe during your holiday party and swap more than boozy spit.

Together, it seems certain that you will go far.

Yours in eternal debt,

Corby Anderson

Marina, CA (currently)

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May 16, 2010

Military Channel
Programming Department
Re: Sub-standard Television

Dear Sir, or Madam Programming Director,

Recently, thanks to a fantastic, and ultimately unavoidable opportunity that arrived in the form of a constant stream of unsolicited mail, my household has come under the distractible sway of the Direct TV broadcast system.

Prior to this boondoggle, our familial evening entertainment was restricted to obsolete acts of sentimental fancy, such as face to face conversation, the reading of novels, and the occasional marital boot-knocking. I don’t know how we survived without it, to be honest.

Now, we are provided with endless televised programming from an incredible diversity of networks and product-shillers. The other night, when the pneumonia kicked in and there was nothing to do but wait for death or dawn, I personally counted over 100 simultaneously broadcast programs devoted to cheaply designed workout/torture devices. Intrigued by the array of choices, but unable to simply choose due to acute codeine intoxication, I rigged the DVR function to record them all at once for future playback. My wife was slightly out of tune about the erasing of her collected spook-hunting programs, but has since retreated from her silence and has even started to message me on Facebook when I forget to lock something or turn a light out.

The sheer volume of digital choice has turned me into an unmanageably voracious viewer, and as a long-time admirer of military drama, there is no channel (other than the occasional Showtime “spice” hour) that has garnered my utterly divided attention more than your own. Thanks to digital recorders, television phones, workplace “research” and a car-mounted dish that pipes in your signal while I commute, I have actually averaged more than 24 hours a day of Military Channel viewing for two months straight. That is, until a programming shock last night halted that streak like an internal Vatican investigation.

I was just settling into my couch-bed after my nightly eyeball-scrubbing, when I saw that a favorite topic was about to be featured on your channel. Submarines!

I love almost all subs. The Hunt For Red October. The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou. Togo’s Deli. Hellcats of the Navy is one of my all-time favorite Ronald Reagan/Nancy Davis (no/pun) vehicles. Hell, that movie may have single-handedly changed the fate of the entire world, for better or worse. Had it turned out better, Reagan might have continued to concentrate on movie making rather than fall into one of his foul depressions and consider, of all things, politics.

At any rate, my interest was quite piqued when your show began. And with that unusual focus, I watched with alternating sensations of admiration and fear as your top ten ticked down. Admiration for the men who lived and died in these barreling death tubes, and fear that your humorless producers would deign to leave off the most devastating, world-changing sub of all, the Yellow Submarine, which briefly (but brilliantly) sailed under the freaky flag of the Peace Patrol.

As that internalized battle waged, I made note of a few necessary conciliations given to what must be considered enemy navy’s. Your judges decided to sprinkle, for the sake of appearances, and a likely necessarily (so I would imagine) – a Jap model and a Russian sub in among the historic American and British submarines.

And as a good and prideful southern boy, you can imagine the old cheer that welled up in me as the last and top number was about to be revealed. We descendents of the old rebels of yore may have rehabilitated, for the most part, our social mores (and those that haven’t are Twinkie-sucking diabetics with rotten teeth and a wholly irrational, unfounded appreciation of Kenny Chesney), but we have never forgotten that the Hunley was the first submarine to sink an enemy warship when it downed the ill-fated Housatonic.

But rather than devote the top ranking to the most historic sub of the entire floating, sinking, torpedoing genre, your producers astonishingly gave that honor to a Nazi sub, and did so in a breathless narrative that made me question the very nature of your origins! What is this Nazi worship? I can’t imagine that you would have the balls to pull the same shit if a similar show was to rank the greatest armies. Or would you? What a goddamned insult to every single American sailor who put out to sea, in a world turned upside down, to go chase those fascist assholes around the ends of the earth. What’s left of Hemingway is spinning in its grave up there in Idaho. If Reagan were here, he’d have your treasonous asses thrown off the air quicker than you can count to Zehn, and have every single one of you permanently relegated to the backwater eddy of redneck-exploiting infomercial programming. That guy loved the FCC. He made it his bitch, so to speak.

But whoa is us, the times have changed. Ike was right. And since Ronny Reagan has gone off to pasture, sensationalized channels like yours have slipped in under our regulatory blockades to subvert our citizens with typically unpatriotic blood-lust. The current President has more than enough disaster to attend to rather than spend a second of time dealing with your Nazi-praising, but we, the people still have one enviable weapon at our disposal: the all-might remote.

Click.

Corby Anderson
Marina, CA

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