Monday, May 17, 2010

in which shock jocks are sort of jerks

INTERN is a very bleary-eyed INTERN this morning because she had to get up for a radio interview at 5:30 AM. Not just any sleepy, genteel radio interview. We're talking "Bruiser and Big Dawg in the Morning" straight out Large Suburban Hellhole, New Jersey.

It was not the worst ten minutes of INTERN's life, but it was maybe fifth or sixth runner up.

Bruiser and Big Dawg took the concept of "bro" to a whole new level. They were rude, obnoxious, sexist, and deliberately insulting. And while INTERN tried her hardest to sass them right back, her pathologically nice Canadian upbringing reared its sunny head and she came off as a total wuss. Observe:

Bruiser: So your book's about, let's see here, senior citizens. OK, so if I'm having sex with a senior lady and she starts having a heart attack, can I [redacted—grotesque].

INTERN's internal monologue: Tell him he's an asshole! Tell him to go fuck himself!

INTERN: Well, sir, for one thing I don't think most senior ladies would find you very appealing. But to answer your question, you should stop and call an ambulance if someone's having a heart attack.

Big Dawg: Is there any point in seniors going on vacation anyway? Shouldn't we just let 'em die and then take their money?

INTERN's internal monologue: Feisty comeback! Come on! Knock him dead!

INTERN: Er, Big Dawg, well, no, you're wrong about that. As you can see from my book, seniors are capable of much more than sitting around waiting to die.

Big Dawg and Bruiser:: Bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha, what if we asked a senior to show us her titties!!!!!!!!

INTERN: But—just—no!

(Bruiser and Big Dawg theme music comes on, drowning INTERN's protests)

INTERN wished she was The Rejectionist. The Rejectionist would have given Bruiser and Big Dawg a verbal smackdown so sassy they wouldn't have come back on the air for weeks. The Rejectionist would have told those jerks where they could stick their heads.

But alas. No amount of coaching from Techie Boyfriend or INTERN's publicist has cracked INTERN's compulsion towards excessive politeness. INTERN is starting to dread these interviews, and is quite sure they are not leading to any book sales. Maybe the solution would be to see if INTERN's publisher would spring for a ghost to do radio interviews on INTERN's behalf. But that wouldn't solve the underlying problem.

Oh, what to do!?


  1. Ugh man. They would have chewed you up no matter what- popular radio hosts are used to being up and on it at un godly hour and have to act like dungholes so they can perk up the poor cronies in early morning traffic. SO sorry the interview didn't go the way you'd hoped:(

  2. You aren't too nice, you are beautifully nice and they are jerks!

    I wish I knew what to suggest. I'm appalled at idiots like that.

  3. INTERN should create an alter ego tied to a "tough girl" leather jacket (or other "tough" accessory). This alter ego, like all good secret identities, has a full and non-Canadian history. (In fact, she's never even heard of Canadia!)

    Put on your tough accessory of choice and become *ALTER-INTERN*. (It's like Superman's glasses in reverse.)

    Alter-INTERN comes from a part of the world where they eat nails for breakfast! She is confident! If she can't find something sassy to say, she just picks a nail out of her teeth from this morning's breakfast and flicks it menacingly at the senior citizen hating scumbags.

    Once you're in the cab on the way home, you take off your tough accessory and turn back into the sweet Canadian INTERN we all know and follow. And no one will ever know it was all an act.


  4. Oh, by all means. Send in Le Rejectionist. And film it. That would go YouTube viral classic.

    Down with sexist jerks. In fact, down with all jerks. How can anyone not in seventh grade still think that it is either cool or funny to make other people uncomfortable?

    Sorry you had such a bad experience. Mean people suck.

  5. I'll swap you three sassy-ass ghosted interviews straight up for another manuscript critique. No tradebacks!

  6. Intern, your next interview will go better. It will probably be like the NPR skit "Schweddy Balls."

    Really! Most interviewers aren't... them.


  7. Oh, poor INTERN! On the one hand, I'm relieved that your natural good manners caused you to refrain from getting into a cuss war with the two blockheads. But the other hand is ALL FOR you being on the evening news for skewering them with your rapier-sharp tongue.

    *Sigh* I vote for the ghost interview subject and pick someone who not only can swear, but can also throw a punch. It worked for Norman Mailer.

  8. I like Josin's idea! Could we call your alter ego ALTERN?? You can occasionally post as her. It would be like therapy but free--and entertaining!

    I'm sure you did better than you think at the interview anyway. : )

  9. I give you hugs from across the internet. That sounded like a nightmare! Why were you on their show anyway? I don't think their audience has the intellect to read books without pictures.

  10. You could just say, "I agree, Leonard Nimoy is hot" every time they ask a stupid question.

    Or fake an equipment malfunction and give them radio silence. They're basically trolls, and the only way to deal with trolls is to not feed them, i.e. don't dignify their asshattery with a reply.


  12. I never come up with the comeback until post-coital. I feel your pain.

  13. :( oh INTERN. stay cheerful. those douche canoes are not worth the small amount of effort it would take for your genuisy brain to come up with a zingy retort!

  14. As a fellow Canadian, I feel your pain. My brain comes up with many witty retorts in such situations -- top of which is usually, "What are you, five?" Sadly, the good ones either come after the fact or get blocked by my Canadian manners. *sigh* Here's hoping you don't have to deal with too many more of those.

  15. INTERN should practice telling her candid opinion to strangers she will never see again. It will be liberating for her. :) And great practice.

  16. Poor Intern. I'm now looking on endless rejection rather more fondly, if getting an agent and a publisher leads to this. about aiming The Rejectionist at Intern's publicist to teach said publicist the error of booking inappropriate interviews...

  17. At the risk of making you famous, the best way to deal with radio jerks and their big, massive, misplaced egos, is to, indeed, feed them.

    Radio Jerk: "So, let's say I'm humping a senior and she has a heart attack..."

    Intern (almost interrupting with loud cackling): "Oh my GAWD! You guys are so FUNNY!"

    It's a game. You play it. I used to think that writing was just, you know, writing. That part is over once you get published. Unfortunately, in order to keep your sanity intact, try playing them for what they want to hear. When your ever-so-busy publicist lines you up for an interview, research who is going to do the interview, and play to what he/she wants to hear. I can't guarantee you more book sales that way, but you'll have more fun at something that could otherwise be quite frustrating.

    They are not there to get you more book sales, they are there to make themselves look good. So, play the part, the worst thing that happens is that they want another interview ;)

  18. INTERN - Well, I guess any publicity is better than no publicity? Or maybe not. :\ I hope your next interviews are more geared toward your target audience (and with nicer hosts)!

  19. At least you know that most people listening to asshats on radio are likely asshats themselves anyway, and also probably don't know how to read. I'm sorry about the attack of chronic politeness! I suffer from this as well. It sucks <.<

  20. Omg, are you serious? How can these boneheads have a job? How can someone let them have a voice? Cant they see they r first class jerks?
    Crap! I´d kick their asses right there.

  21. Whenever talk radio or TV amps up people into shock and outrage, I always have to remind myself that they’re getting paid to do that. Meaning this is what sells, and they probably don’t believe half of what they say, but they have to keep feeding the machine with sex and slander and insults and fights. As the saying goes, “Only trouble is interesting.”

    But that doesn’t mean we have to buy into it or add to it, and that's not your nature. If you suddenly went all Rejectionist on them (which I’m not saying they didn’t deserve, or that I wouldn’t enjoy seeing her MIGHTY SWORD OF VIGILANCE in WRATHFUL ACTION), you’d feel great and powerful at the time, but on the way home you’d be mortified at the gouges in your boots from kicking straight through filing cabinets and shoving microphones where even mold don’t grow.

    Johnny Carson had the sharpest wit, but he was a shy sweetheart through and through. Conan O’Brien met him once, and when he asked for advice, Carson said, “Just be yourself. That’s the only way it can work.”

    Trust Johnny and be yourself. It’s the best you have to offer.

  22. I don't have advice for you, but if it's any consolation, I feel the same way about those kinds of morons and would have had just as much trouble as you, if not more.

  23. I'm just happy to learn you share some of my Canadian-ness eh.

    Don't know the dudes you speak of, but can certainly imagine and cringed on your behalf.

  24. Okay, Intern, it goes like this...

    Them, "Show us her titties?"
    You, "First, take you thumb outta your nose and clean you fingernails before you address me!"

    Them, "Humping a senior lady!"
    You, full out leg slappin' laugh with, "Ya know, when this interview's over, I'm alerting the Health Dept about this studio! Followed by, "Which one of you "noble savages" shit your pants? Somebody put a thumb in that guy's butt!"

    Them, "stealing money."
    You, "YOU can count past one hand?"

    Get the gist?

    Haste yee back ;-)

  25. Well, have you thought that politeness in the face of crassness would probably appeal to your target market (assuming you are actually aiming at senior citizens) than a snappy come-back would?

    I'm sure they're all thinking "What a nice girl, and they were such rude louts. I think I'll buy her book..."

  26. Wincing in solidarity, my dear.

    For more book promo blues, check this out. It's brilliant:

  27. I'm with The Rejectionist; please post the email address of the station that hosts these cretins. It's time for the Intern Army to rise up and smite the boors where they live - in the crucible of public opinion. Keyboards unite! Come to the defense of our flower!!