One Man's Trash

Fighting Resistance one piece at a time.

Yo Mamma

Rejected By: McSweeney’s Lists (

Why Theory:  While okay to be crass, it’s probably not clever enough.  I think “Skin Flautist” is more of they type of thing they’d want to see, as opposed to “Salad Tosser” which is probably too on the nose (as, perhaps, most of these are). 

Rejecting me again, eh McSweeney’s?  You won’t hold me down for long, you clever devil.  You think you’re so smart but – guess what? – I went to college, and I can sound wicked smart too!

LIST: Jobs My Mother Has Previously Held, According to My High School Friends

Sausage Taster
Teabag Hummer
Train Conductor
Pickle Tickler
Skin Flautist
Nut Juggler
Meatpipe Smoker
Bottle Squatter
Backdoor Specialist
Salad Tosser


Interview of the Century

Rejected by: Next Week in Review (iO Chicago sketch show)

Why Theory: This is the bastard twin of the previously posted Kim Jong-il sketch, also written for Next Week. To recap, the show wasn’t about made up news of the future (which this is), it was about current day stuff. If we’re telling the truth, I thought there would be a good chance they wouldn’t have the casting for this sketch even if it fit the idea of the show, but it was just too delicious to pass up.

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Kim Jong Illin’

Rejected By:  Next Week in Review (iO Chicago sketch show)

Why Theory:  Being a graduate of iO’s writing program, I got an email from the director saying they were collecting material previously written in the classes for possible inclusion in a sketch show launching in mid-July.  It said that the show was about the news that was going to happen in the future, though there would be a segment about news of the past (thus making the previously written material handy).  Totally sick, pal.  Loved the idea and was excited to hopefully contribute to a news-based sketch show since Big News got the boot.

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An Open Letter to a Certain Bus Driver on Route #72/North Avenue

Rejected by: McSweeney’s

Why Theory:  Bad bus rides are too commonplace an experience (maybe they get 100 open letters to bus drivers a month) and, perhaps, because this piece employs a device.  I’m not sure it’s right tonally either, since I’ve been told that McSweeney’s likes bookish treatments of popular culture references.  I also think there are a few grammar bugs in there (current thought: I am a grammar-ignorant moron).

Without further ado, here is the piece in question:

An Open Letter to a Certain Bus Driver on Route #72/North Avenue

Please allow me to apologize for my unjustifiably negative judgment. I observed you doing your job as an ignorant consumer of your service, only later recognizing the nuance and efficiency of your performance. For the dirty looks, sighs and under-the-breath mutterings, I am sorry. Do me the favor of allowing me to fully ease my guilt by being specific, lest you think my apology empty and without true remorse.

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