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September 20, 2006

Open Letter to the Conductor | 09:21 PM

Dear Conductor of the F Train that stopped at 15th Street/Prospect Park at about 9:15pm on Wednesday, September 20th, 2006,

Sir- the cameras that are installed in the 15th Street/Propect Park station, monitors placed so they are visible from the conductor's window, are there for a reason. If, for instance, you look in a screen, and see four people gathered around a baby carriage at the threshold of a door, you might venture to guess that there was something going on. For instance, the wheels of the baby carriage could well be caught in the gap between the car and the platform.

For future reference, helpful behavior on your part in this situation probably does not include: 1. Attempting to close the doors several times, further terrorizing the already-scared sister of the baby in the carriage, and 2. Announcing over the loudspeaker that we should "stand clear of the closing doors." For my part, I was not planning to stand clear of the closing doors until I was at least 75% sure that you would not kill a child as you pulled out of the station.


Jonathan Van Gieson
Subway Rider

September 01, 2004

Public Service | 01:49 AM

As a public service to those who missed Rudy's speech, I've put up an entire strip today, with both quotes direct from the address, PLUS a bit of text I'm SURE must have been cut from an earlier draft.

That is, if the ex-mayor has any sense of decency.

gretchen comments: ""that week we thought giuliani wasn't an ass" -- perfect! I forgot that that's precisely how it felt. well done."

August 31, 2004

RNC: Hey, bite my ass! | 01:59 PM

Some as-yet unlinked protest photos from Alexis, from August 27-29.

Continuing the roundup of photog friends, JCN's 8/29 photos, and Eliot's convention photos.

And, just to put things in perspective, JCN's shots of the WTC on fire, which event the Republicans are so happy to exploit in order to try to win the election. If you haven't yet read Giuliani's 2008 Campaign Speech, you should. One friend described it as "taking a big piss all over 9/11."

And here I was, naively hoping one of NY's leaders might take Bush to task for his failure to deliver the funds he promised the city in the wake of the attack. Foolish boy.

neilfred comments: "you didn't actually link to jcn's wtc shots..."

June 01, 2004 gets Nasty | 04:06 PM

blondeblackundiesfullsmall.jpgWith Burlesque popping up in all the local mags, the time has come for to name our favorite Burlesque performer.

blondewigandboasmall.jpgAnd that performer is... NASTY CANASTA*.

"Fine burlesque entertainments with just a splash of zesty, delicious nastiness." You haven't heard Nirvana until you've seen Nasty do an act called Remote Control... during a recent performance, one member of the audience enthused "You're doing Kurt justice, baby!"

She's appearing this Friday at CB's Gallery with Slutty Puppets.

Nasty Canasta's Nasty Little Website

* does not aver, assert, affirm of infer that this choice is in any way, shape, or form, unbiased.

April 22, 2004

Election Day is coming | 07:31 PM

Show plugging time again:

Cagey Productions' The Golden Age in Exit! Stage Right! returns this Monday for another free show! Details Here.

Plus, as promised, details about a free reading of a show about the wacky misadventures of a corrupt politician...

by Joel Henry Stein and Alex Goldberg
a staged concert reading

"Finally, a political musical comedy for the people! Take a break from the current political scene and watch Democrat and womanizer President Elliot Goodrich run for re-election against the charismatic but dim Wyoming Governor Nathan Burke."

Tuesday, April 27th and Wednesday April 28th @ 7:00pm
The Triad Theater, 158 West 72nd Street (between Broadway and Columbus)

Free admission, 2 drink minimum.

November 13, 2003

DUMBO: Make it Art-free! | 01:45 PM

artvcommerce.jpgThe New York Post [via Gothamist] reports that "city officials have instituted a rare neighborhood-wide production moratorium," banning all filming in D.U.M.B.O. to maintain quality of life for the residents.

This measure comes as no surprise; DUMBO has already expunged the moneyless artists, why not move on to the moneyed pseudo-artists? In fact, I would like to suggest that this "moratorium" does not go far enough.

I call on the mayor's office to officially designate DUMBO an "Art-Free Zone", allowing the newest crop of residents to live their investment-banking lives untroubled by the bothersome physical evidence of independent thought. Let DUMBO — as the Lower East Side now is — be unstained by the embarrassing enigma of galleries and theaters, the stumbling and intrusive introspections of the creative. Let there be Prada, not art, under the bridge! The future is ABC, not DTX. Is it not time for DUMBO, like Soho before it, turn its eye towards that most American, that most patriotic of all Arts, the Art of Shopping?

And what of the artists? Worry not, they shall still have their place. It is their lot to continue moving outward, a ragtag band of brave explorers, advance scouts for the pulsing waves of gentrification. And, when the last corporate stragglers finally settle into their Coney Island ocean-view condos built on the ruins of Sideshows by the Seashore, we shall have driven all the artists into the sea, never to return.

June 10, 2003

Simpsons Fans Take Note | 03:00 PM

My sources have revealed that Yeardley Smith, the voice of Lisa Simpson, is developing a show called The Good Life, which—if my insider info is accurate—will include juicy Hollywood gossip, sordid personal secrets, and the story of her bathroom-tiling stalker. Apparently, they're doing a work-in-progress sneak-preview reading over at Joe's Pub this Friday.

• Reading of The Good Life by Yeardley Smith, at Joe's Pub. Friday, June 13th @ 7:00pm. Twelve bucks.

May 22, 2003

No Ass O'Barkeep Gets a Cel Phone | 01:10 AM

And thereby calls at 1:05am to submit this report:

"Blue Ribbon is painfully overpriced and the service sucks."

May 20, 2003

Hotspots | 09:34 AM

Responding to rumor control, Wiley's Dawg submits this report on current gay hotspots.

"silly boy, the backroom at urge closed ages ago... hotspots tend to be different each night of the week. last night, for example, i went to 'park' which is the hottest gay bar for a sunday. the slide is the newest. the cock is the sleaziest. b-bar on tuesdays (beige) is still pretty trendy for the upscale fashion-loving people-spotting gays.

wow. i need to stop going out so much."

UPDATE: Aaron writes "Wiley's Dawg knows nothing! Therapy in Hell's Kitchen is *the* It-spot for trendy, good-looking gay boys, although it just opened, so he probably hasn't heard of it."

"from a friend about therapy...

'Then they started 'Queer Factor' with Danny Pantaro...and I couldn't take I left...didn't even get a drink so I don't even know if it's expensive or not...'

hmmm. Danny Pantaro. doesn't sound trendy or cool to me..."

May 09, 2003

More Theatrical Gallivants | 06:26 PM

May I recommend the vaudevillian antics of The Golden Age in their newest show Is There A Doctor in the House? I caught opening night on Wednesday at the Metropolitan Playhouse, which delivered a cavalcade of great bits stolen from the "era of lunatic virtuosity." In fact, I stole many of the same bits — including the classic line "A girl backed into an airplane propeller: disaster" — for my junior year playwriting effort, Burlesque, written at the tender age of 20. The Golden Age does it much better than I did, but then again, I only wrote the damn thing to meet girls. Is There a Doctor in the House? runs through May 17th. More info here.

(Full disclosure: the show is produced by Cagey Productions, 4Panel's partner-in-crime for the upcoming 1980s Teen Movie Bronte extravaganza Wuthering High.)

April 26, 2003

Review: The New York Auto Show | 07:37 PM

What could be more boring?

April 20, 2003

Xina Discovers The True Meaning of Easter | 01:44 AM

Xina writes:

As I was walking around New York City on Tuesday, enjoying the brief days of sunshine and summer-like warmth, I found myself in Herald Square. The streets were filled with crowds of happy shoppers, people on their lunch break enjoying the weather, and tourists wandering around staring at things and getting in everyone's way. It occurred to me that it is almost Easter, a very special time, and as I walked I began to meditate on what this means to me.

And then I got to Macy's.

And there, I saw it.

It was a sign. It was an omen. It was as if some great cosmic power had reached down to show me just what this thing called Easter is all about. You see, I discovered The True Meaning of Easter.

And that, oh my loved ones, is Peeps.

You've heard of them, you've seen them in the stores, you've even poked them through the cellophane packaging. Some of you have watched me consume massive amounts of them over the past twenty-five years. They are small, they are sweet. They are the number-one selling non-chocolate Easter candy in America. They are Peeps.

And they are what Easter is all about.

I urge you all to stop by Macy's and take a look at the Peep. Can't make it to Macy's? Then gaze at these photos as you munch on a box or two of Peeps - and hey, don't forget to send me the upc codes if do you do snack on a Peep. I'm aiming for the Peeps travel mug, but if we all pull together and get snacking, I can get the clock. And isn't that what Easter is all about?


Giant Peep peeks out through the first blossoms of spring. (photo by Xina)

To her disappointment, Xina found no additional Peeps inside. (photo by Xina)

April 14, 2003

The Best Of Gawker | 12:02 PM

Congratulations to Gawker, which celebrates its four-month anniversary this week. Since December, Elizabeth and Nick have obsessively brought us everything we ever needed to know about things we never needed to know anything about. From the incessant Tina Brown coverage to the "no J-Lo" policy (a custom more honored in the breach than in the observance), Gawker is, by my accounts, a winner.

In honor if this quarter-year milestone, I've compiled a list of Gawker posts that, in my unbiased and carefully considered opinion, represent the blog at its best.

THE BEST OF GAWKER: The First 120 Days

BEST ENTERTAINMENT NEWS: JVG's Saturday Night Gawker's celebrity nightlife coverage kicks off on a high note.
RUNNER UP: Celebrity Tracking

BEST ORIGINAL REPORTAGE: Scene from last night's Gawker party: Jonathan Van Gieson A fair and accurate account of the event.
RUNNER UP: Smoking ban workarounds

BEST NON-MANHATTAN NEWS: New Neighborhood Acronyms Gawker was the first publication to jump on the "SloWiTe" bandwagon.
RUNNER UP: New Jersey

BEST WAR COVERAGE: The Lockhart Steele Resolution Unlike less responsible media outlets, Gawker covered the Van Gieson/Steele conflict from the very beginning.
RUNNER UP: JVG covering for Lockhart Steele The very beginning.

March 30, 2003

Below 14th: The Oversights | 09:53 AM

One of Lock's more heinous crimes against humanity is his ignorance of a defining part of Lower East Side culture: The rapidly-diminishing theater scene. Though wide-eyed new arrivals thrill to think they're breaking new ground when they move into the neighborhood, this letter from a founder of Surf Reality — which is closing its doors after 10 years following a police raid for "operating a speakeasy" and a rent raise — makes it clear who the real trailblazers were:

"[The police who raided the theater were in part] inspired by phone calls from some of our new neighbors who were wondering why all the people were hanging out here at 172 Allen St. All I can say is times have changed. When I first moved here 10 years ago, the basement here at 172 Allen St. was a brothel. Hookers trolled the corner, the traffic islands and the side streets. Where Bluestockings Books now resides was a "crack deli". The building was also home to a pawnshop with dubious ethics. Surf Reality was a kind of anchor store in a downtown mall for outlaws. In those days it was theoretically possible to sell some boosted goods at the pawn shop, cop a little blow in the deli, get a date in the basement and then go upstairs to see a show. Our first three years as a theater featured six DEA/NYPD raids on our downstairs "crack deli" neighbors. Usually while there was a show going on upstairs...

The hookers are gone now. The "crack deli" became a feminist bookstore and the brothel has morphed into a Mosque. The building next door that stood abandoned until last spring now features 400sq. ft. apartments at $1500 a month. Evidently the realtors failed to mention us..." –Letter from Rob at Surf Reality, 2/29/03

March 24, 2003

Protest Sign Awards | 01:44 PM

I think we can all agree that the most important thing about any political debate is not who's right or wrong, but who has the best signage. With that in mind, I am pleased to present the Protest Sign Awards for March 22-23, 2003:

"Bush: Don't bag Baghdad for your bad dad."
Go ahead, say it three times fast.

MOST GENITAL | Winner: Anti
"Don't follow that Bush, find your own."
Poses the question: Which is better, war on Iraq, or women masturbating? Where's the polling data on that, CNN?

MOST MUSICAL | Winner: Anti
"Brahms not Bombs."
I suppose the opposite position would be "Bach not Iraq".

"Corporate Lawyers Against War"
One guy in a suit. The Daily News was interviewing him.

"Bush is a fucking idiot."
The best the pro-Bush folks could come up with to counter was "Bush is NOT a fucking idiot."

"Iraq is French for Hollywood."
See, I didn't know that, because I never studied French.

"Saddam and Bin Laden Love War Protesters."
Remind me to make this one into a bumper sticker and put it on my SUV.

"$ for Freedom, Not the Board of Ed!"
This on the heels of the announcement that the administration will be holding a nationwide bake sale to buy bombers.

(Gathered by reporters on the scene in NYC, and other news media)

March 04, 2003

More Wisdom from O'Barkeep | 12:11 AM

No Ass O'Barkeep (who holds forth on the subject of "gender bending cocktails" in this month's Elle Magazine) debunks another smoking ban workaround: Bar owners planning to collect money from smokers to cover the fines may find that the cost is higher than they think.

First Offense: "Around $100"
Second Offense: "Something like $2,500"
Third Offense: Lose Your Liquor License

February 26, 2003

Another Post-Ban Alternative | 07:29 PM

For those still upset about the NYC bar smoking ban, might I suggest the smoking lounge at the Atlanta airport? It has everything people say they'll miss about the pre-ban NYC bar atmosphere — a small, enclosed, room with a cancerous cloud hanging just above the heads of desperate, addicted people, huddled around overflowing ashtrays, clutching limp cigarettes in their trembling, sweaty hands — without any annoying alcohol to get in the way of your smoking enjoyment.

February 18, 2003

Wear Something Neutral | 10:50 AM

Well, the Swedes may have to go to New Jersey to get some lingonberry action, but if the pamphlet I just got in the mail is any indication, the Swiss have got it made right here in NYC. The swisspeaks festival hits town on Feb 27, and it looks to be a rockin' good time. Planning to attend? Fashion tip: Wear something neutral. (with a tip o' the porkpie to Mssr. Mike Saenz.)

Extra-Group Show of International Artists
"Ever wondered how you can shift the boundaries between the real and unreal?" Almost incessantly.

The Middle of the World: Discovering Swiss Cinema
"Find out how the Swiss see the world, and how the world might see the Swiss in this series from the Swiss Classics to current films."
Tribute to La Cinemathéque Suisse includes:
Frauennot-Frauenglück (Alexandro/Tisse/Eisenman, 1929) IMDb user rating: "awaiting five votes"
Feind Im Blut (Walter Ruttman, 1931) IMDb notes: "If you like this title, we also recommend...Une femme sur mesure (1997) (TV)"

Design & Architecture
"We take our inspiration from the rich and solid legacy of our traditions and transform it into objects of desire with impeccable material, great detail, and convincing sobriety. Swiss design. Swiss architecture. Traditionally progressive." Swiss marketing prose: incomprehensible.

Branding "Swissness"
"A panel of highly qualified marketing experts who manage these famous Swiss brands will tell you how they use "Swissness" to make all the difference to an otherwise generic product." Hey, why don't we just put holes in the damn cheese?

and, of course, the coup d'grace:
"Swiss Plus" Event by the Swiss Bankers Association
"Top bankers from major Swiss and U.S.-Swiss financial institutions will discuss Switzerland's expertise in global invitation only." Maybe they'll tell us what they did with all that Nazi gold.

January 14, 2003

Move over, MOMA | 01:49 AM

If anyone wants to prove me wrong and book Ninja McFatty's new sculpture series "American Bonsai" – constructed entirely of semi-melted beverage straws and overturned drink coasters – into a Manhattan art gallery, go right ahead. I have to warn you, though: some of the more delicate pieces were destroyed by high winds on the way from the bar to the subway.

January 06, 2003

Brooklyn Update: BoCoCa | 03:18 PM

For the record, I fully support the efforts of the fine folks who are fighting an uphill battle to rename the Boerum Hill/Cobble Hill/Carrol Gardens section of Brooklyn "BoCoCa." The concept is simple: take three semi-fashionable neighborhoods with indeterminate boundaries and consolidate them into one über-chic mega-district with an amalgam name.

But why stop with BoCoCa? I propose the following new name for a Park Slope/South Slope/Windsor Terrace conglomerate: SloWiTe ("slo-wee-tay")
Usage: I had to wait forty goddamn minutes for the goddamn F train when I was trying to get to goddamn SloWiTe.

December 18, 2002

Below North 14th | 12:43 AM

Just got back from an evening on the town at Galapagos, a rather unique little pub on North 6th Street in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. The main feature of this watering hole: water. The front of the bar area has been flooded, perhaps with brackish stagnant stink-water from the nearby East River. The New York Times describes this as 'a truly sublime reflecting pool.'

Among the entertainment: Tiny Ninja Theater (see previous Dreamlog) and burlesque entertainer The World Famous *BOB*, with whom I have much in common. What, you may ask? Well, as her name suggests, we're both famous (although I have yet to achieve the level of fame at which I will be upgraded to the all-caps with stars nomenclature), we both enjoy making martinis (although I prefer dry and she mixes dirty), and we can both do interesting things with a banana.

One small difference: she has slightly larger breasts.

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Fine Burlesque Entertainments
Nasty Canasta
Official Burlesque Artist of, cheese queen of Coney Island
Jonny Porkpie
Nasty puppeteer and Burlesque Mayor of New York City.


Tales from the Established Norm
The post-college episodes of the strip from college.
One strip. One thousand endings.

Fred, The Obnoxious Goldfish
An angry slice of piscine fury from the mind of Jay Veegee
One-shot from the files.
Faust: a Primer
Created for the program of Man of Infinite Desire

Produces Interesting Theater. Such as...
Tiny Ninja Theater
No Small Parts. Only Small Actors.
Hudson Valley Playreading Series
"Buddy" Cianci: The Musical
Rhode Island's most popular politician, six times elected, twice convicted

Book of Ages
"Exploring life's landmark ages in hilariously obsessive detail."
buy 30 | buy 40
buy Japanese 40
German 40 (unavailable)

Minor & Incomplete

The ANTAGONISTIC magazine.
Survivor Deadpool
Deadpool Dead.
A great idea!
Unpalatable Ball
Featuring the Discontented Elf.

I Know Them All
Two Snail or Not Two Snail?
by Jay Veegee


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