Leap For Murray Crocker

There was only one true friend in my life, Gus. Without Gus in my life, I never would’ve invented Rocket Science Cake for Dad. At least, that’s what Gus called my foray into sponge cake science during the summer of 69, when NASA put Americans on the moon to work on their short game. I developed rocket fuel for Space Shuttles earlier in my career after serving time in the war as a medic. Dear Gus, a Holocaust Survivor who managed to remain squeal free after an SS officer stabbed a pitchfork through his leg while hiding out in a farm in Germany within a haystack also called me the boy who raised himself. Gus would always boast to his friends in the Garment district about me going to City College at 16 and how I sang Hebrew more beautifully than our rock star Cantor in the Bronx who gave Dion a good run for his money. But mainly Gus called me the boy who raised himself because my father had the misfortune of having no trade to fall back on after immigrating to New York from Germany. Horse Collar Makers in the Bronx like my father weren’t putting me through MIT or John Hopkins University, even if the Budweiser horses are appearing in more print ads throughout Esquire these days.

I never contemplated tweaking my wife’s Sponge Cake recipe by using my rocket science background until her last batch drove away all the pigeons my dad used to feed in the park. Dad calls and says, “Son, I don’t know what your wife put in her Sponge Cake but all the Pigeons I used to feed in the park have gone AWOL since I fed them some leftover crumbs. Granted, your mom can’t bake either, baking is just not in our DNA, your wife included. I know that you have a kid on the way and enough to worry about Murray and that I was never the provider you and your sister Marian hoped for. I still thought the Candy Shop was a good idea. Who knew, I needed to pay protection money to the Genovese family on a monthly basis versus paying annual Synagogue dues if I didn’t want my store cleaned out every year on Easter Day. It’s just that those Pigeons kept me company Murray. They made feel less miserable than normal, until your mom moaned about how all the modern Orthodox woman in 1969 aren’t interested in upholding the Jewish tradition of sporting the shaved head look post Holocaust Victims enough to buy her wigs anymore. So, without those pigeons in my life Murray, my life is an endless slog like a plain Hebrew National dog with no sauerkraut or spicy brown mustard to relish on top.”

Soon after, dear Gus was over for Shabbat, before we went for Chinese with our wives, our usual routine on a Friday night in the Bronx. I say, “Gus, my dad thinks Ethel’s Sponge Cake scared away the pigeons he feeds at the park and he’s more miserable than normal without them. I wish I knew how I can help him out.” Gus says, “Why don’t you use your chemical engineering background and tweak Ethel’s Spone Cake recipe? You can call it Rocket Science Cake. Nothing’s better than great Sponge Cake. Tweak the sponge cake science Murray. Whatever Betty Crocker can do, you can do better.” “Fine, I’ll tweak the recipe. Who knows, if it’s a big hit, maybe, my dad can open a bakery business with it. 8 million New Yorkers can never get enough of great Sponge Cake.”

I tweaked and tweaked and finally made the perfect Sponge Cake. Man can’t live on his wife’s Sponge Cake alone. I think Maimonides said that once. Anyway, Dad never opened a bakery to sell them. Still, the recipe did become a source of urban legend. I never shared the recipe with anyone but my dad, who took to it his grave. On his death bed at the hospital, he said, “Son, I know you wanted to be an architect and design bridges and I was too much of a useless putz to make enough money to send you to Cornell to study it. But even the Brooklyn Bridge can’t compare to the godly grandeur of your Sponge Cake. Word must have gotten around town, because before I knew it, I was being hailed by the chess players in the park as the Pigeon Godfather. God really knew what he was doing when he made you kid. Nurse, come over and leap for my Murray Crocker. His Sponge Cake recipe is so good, Hitler would’ve called off the Holocaust for it.”

Michael Kornbluth

Owner Of A Heavy Heart

Welcome to Rough Talk Rules, I’m your radio host Solomon Kornbluth, helping you work toward better tomorrows without your deadweight conversationalist ex friends and romantic partners of years past. And today is Dumping Tips Tuesdays, but first let’s take a call from Robert Gauler in Stamford, CT. Hi, Robert, what’s weighing down your heart today?

“Hi, Solomon, what’s weighing down my heart today is being unemployed during the Passover season again.  I’m losing heart from receiving more rejection emails from employer’s that read, “What kind of a moron are you today? For thinking, you could mosey your zero leveraged, broke down ass into our loving arms after a 5-year vacation life as a Stay at Home Dad, I mean sheltered bum, jerkoff. You’re obviously optionless and friendless in this world right now for a reason. Blog stats we can’t verify don’t count as give a shit credentials for our copywriter position that requires at least 5 year of agency copywriting experience. Sharing mock print ads for Woodford Reserve Whiskey with headlines such as, “Class in A Glass”, aren’t going to secure any invitations to interview for any creative professional role within our constellation of star powered creative technologists, designers and witty wordsmith scribes at large, OK! “

Radio Host Solomon says, “I feel your pain, Robert. When was the last time you pulverized a vagina of any kind?”

“I’m living in my grandma’s old apartment, which reeks of middle-aged mildew malaise. Plus, I’m so broke I can’t afford my past cell phone due bill past tomorrow. So, swiping over some random cum dumpster chick I met on Slut in A Straight Jacke .com isn’t happening anytime soon either. I can’t afford my oil pill or my electric bill, so I don’t even have the option of electrocuting myself to death in my tub with a working toaster from GE for that matter. Even if I could convince an ex-booty call to drop by, she’d get cold feet upon entry because I haven’t been able to afford the heating bill in months either. You know the price of gas is high when 10 bucks at the tank burns faster than a 2-hit pinner”, Robert Gauler from Stamford, CT says.

Solomon Kornbluth laughs and says, “You’re a funny guy Robert. Laughter is the best cure all, used to lighten the stressed-out load of fixed ineffectual, stuck in a ditch depression, that’s squeezing the life out of your loving heart, making it borderline impossible to take semi-easy deep breaths for more than 2 seconds a time, I totally get it. My advice moving forward, is to attend, an open mike, which doesn’t charge the one drink minimum, prepare some jokes about your non-existent love life on stage or just rant and rave about how much your life love life sucks compared to Martha Dump Truck in Heathers and you’ll feel less alone in your rapidly building misery. Chances are, if you’re emotionally honest about why you hate your past friends and former loves who left you for dead and kicked dirt on your premature grave, regardless of it being deserved or not, it will become impossible for the crowd to not empathize with what a decrepit, sad sack, shit sandwich, you’re forced to eat every day without sporting’s it’s an all good, all love, big pimping Puff Dadd vibe along the way. It feels liberating and empowering to get out of your head, especially on stage in front of strangers, because any form of comedy allows you to rewrite the narrative to your own liking while giving the golden opportunity to get in last word or final laugh along the way. Who knows, you might even get luck out tonight with a Lesbian poet whose heart isn’t into munching on far from scrumptious stank fumed vagina anymore.”

“Ok, I’ll take one more caller before we start our fan favorite segment, “Dumping Tips Tuesdays.” Next up is a call from Lindsey Lam from Louisville, Kentucky. My mom grew up down south in Kentucky, although my ex-wife insists Kentucky is more Midwest south. Regardless, finger food down there is considered anything that tastes your cousin’s panties, hey now. Lindsay Lam you’re on the air with Rough Talk Rules. How can I lighten your heavy heart today?”

Lindsay Lam says, “Today, I showed my daughter this pathway in the woods where I used to sneak though during lunch in the 10 grade to grab some Burger King for lunch. After pointing out to my daughter, how I used to go there alone for lunch, she made feel a level of defensive embarrassment, which I never experienced until now when she said, “Mommy, that’s a really sad story. But I don’t recall being completely miserable housing a double whopper with a cheese and a chicken sandwich all by myself in the process. Daughter says, “Didn’t you have anyone to share all that food with?” And I said, “Can you stop rubbing in me being an owner of a tubby heavy heart already?”

Solomon Kornbluth says “Look Linsday, I spent plenty of time eating lunch alone growing up. At the time, I never felt that so and so’s presence would’ve made me more at peace with world or provide any greater amount of endorphin releases than what the Double Whopper with Cheese was giving me already, I waited at least 2 minutes for the cheese to melt on it just right. God forbid. You shouldn’t allow your daughter to make your feel shame 20 years after the fact, I’m assuming, for being a friendless loner teenager at the time like Lisa Simpson with a piss poor GPA. Roger Daltry from the Who called high school a Teenage Wasteland for a reason. Maybe, reframe your solo lunches in the 10th grade with me myself and I to your daughter as self-care dates, solo shrink time, or in the spirit of the late great Warren Zevon, “Splendid Isolation,”. Warren didn’t need no one, Challah, thank you very much.”

“But now it’s time for Dumping Tips Tuesdays.  If you give a friend a thoughtful gift like a John Candy biography with an inscription you wrote inside it without receiving a thank you note or word of acknowledgement in return, it just proves you weren’t as close as you imagined. But don’t dwell on infusing more specialness into your so-called friendship. Instead, slap yourself on the shoulder for possessing a more active imagination than he ever did. But so-called friendship works both ways. So, let’s a say you claim to be friends with someone from high school 25 years after the fact but have zero desire in seeing their newborn kid, with zero plans to remember the kid’s name, then it’s safe to say, you’re a shit friend who should’ve been dumped before the relationship went to shit in the first place. So always remember, don’t act like your shit doesn’t stink when it does or else you come across as an insanely judgy, bigger headed prick than the rest. So be less shitty to yourself today and do what you want to do like eating alone for lunch without shitting on yourself for not having any deadweight conversationalist friends to invite for the privilege of being in your splendid company after all.”

Michael Kornbluth

Beyond Beautiful

Beyond beautiful or giant genius at 11 years old isn’t the question.

Especially when all her teachers since Pre-K have confessed to wanting to clone her, which gives new meaning to honorable mention.

What’s beyond beautiful anyway? Natural beauty from within, that shines through her loving eyes before you tuck her in at night as your next of kin.

Beyond beautiful is your daughter doing cartwheels in the sand that scream go f yourself to, my daddy is a one-man rock and roll band.

Beyond beautiful is your daughter keeping your me centric ego in check, by stating on her birthday, “Spare me the talk today about your life before me was a perpetual wreck.”

Beyond beautiful is a proud New Yorker on the rise. So, when Singing Rose makes her name shine among the bright lights, don’t act so freaking surprised.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter who cares about her daddy being happy despite not making it yet while discarding baby Samuel’s nappy.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter loved by her friends who require zero amends.

Beyond beautiful is a girl who her brothers adore for including them in forms of creative play which never bores.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter who makes her Daddy beam with pride for birthing a light spreader who’s got God on her side.

Beyond beautiful is the birth of a family that started with Singing Rose, who inherited my perfect nose.

Beyond beautiful are hugs with your daughter that last, that make all past hurts, insults and shows of disrespect minor annoyances of the past.

Beyond beautiful is perfect laugh lines on your daughter’s face, after you instruct her brother, Female Flash, to pick up the pace.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter’s love for dad that’s a pure holy glow, that only increases in specialness the more she grows.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter born to woo, who will do more with her life than become a lawyer who sues.

Beyond beautiful is a daughter Matilda Kornbluth, who I can claim as my own. She blesses me with heaven on earth without having to be flown.

Happy 11th Birthday, Matilda Singing Rose, my funnier, sweeter twin, more bonding time with you is always a win, win. I’ll always be your biggest fan, especially for insisting I make it as a big-time comedian in New York versus bolting to Texas or Florida for a better tan.

Mommy, Daddy, Arthur, Samuel and Miss Kitty love all that you are, yet the best is yet come from my beyond beautiful genius star.

All My Love,

The Unholy Father, Daddy

When The Shredder Frets

Vinnie Boom Boom Burrata kissed his Fender Stratocaster more than his ex-wife. In his ex-wife’s defense, she was a self-conscious kisser on pure MDMA. Plus, nothing made Vinne Boom Boom Burrata smile more inside than making his Fender Stratocaster cry. Big tits get played out on the same wife compared to copping endless slides down your electrified shaft, which Vinnie could make come to life like no other. BB King had Lucille and Vinne Boom Boom Burrata had Amanda, named after his favorite power ballad by Boston who also wrote his 2nd favorite song ever, A Man I’ll Never Be, which reminded him of his dear pop who died in his arms from fucking Gum cancer, despite giving up dip for Big League Chew ages ago.

Vinnie’s Dad, Roberto, hailed from a fine line of guitar makers in San Marzano Italy known for its olive farms and its fertile breeding ground of Ferrari red glimmery tomatoes that were sweet enough to pop in your mouth off the vine as if they were mother earth’s answer to organic nerd dispensers. After getting his strumming finger cut off by a local mob boss Domnick De-Gutter Grasi, for refusing to pay the protection money for his acoustic guitar making store for European royalty with plenty of free time on their hands to strum away the midday nappy booze under the sun. Because of that, Vinnie was forced to leave Italy for America and move in with his older brother in Staten Island who was an Italian Butcher known for his 100 Year Prosciutto curing hall beneath his shop on Arthur Kill Road.

Roberto became known as the 9 fingered butcher of Staten Island, who’d flip off the spoiled mafia offspring 6 degrees separated from the Gotti family whenever they’d drop by the shop expecting non-stop access to his primo aged pork samplings below the store, which sold for thousands per pound on the open market. Still, Roberto never lost his love of guitar creation and swore to God he’d make a Barolo wine red one for his 1st and only son Vitto Boom Boom Burrata to ensure he didn’t let the Italian Mafia kill off his family line’s gift of heart strumming serenades that put our heart’s together with our maker in one seemingly beautiful harmony.

But now Roberto’s only son, Vinnie Boom Boom Burrata, who was his best friend till the end can’t play his cherished Fender Stratocaster without crying his eyes out for his dearly departed Papa. Vinnie quit his band Shredder after they signed a recording contract with a new upstart record label Wailing Wall of Metal Records, based on the operatic, heart tingly instrumental guitar solo song, Roberto’s Son Shreds. Vinnie’s finger tapping work on Roberto’s Son Shreds was described by Guitar World as, “Getting finger blasted by Eddie Van Halen on your wedding night great.”

Little did Vinnie know, his biggest fan was a kid known on YouTube as Hardcore Hunga Rocks, who was considered pound for pound the greatest little drummer pounder prodigy since Buddy Rich headlined his own Bat Mitzvah at 10, like a young Cameron Crowe on the sticks from Almost Famous.

Hardcore Hunga Rocks tracks down his favorite shredder of all time in hopes of joining forces to make the greatest pop rock metal record Boston never made in the home recording studio Vinnie’s father had built for him before he was born to become the shredding beast of the six string that he could never be since pops fell in love with Led Zepplin and Jimmy Page’s masterful slide guitar work on In My Time of Dying.

Hardcore Hunga Rocks knocks on Vinnie’s door with such force, he knocks the entire door off its hinges in the process. Vinnie, a silky, long haired black stallion emerges from his Electric Playland Studio with a cigarette in hand and says, “Who invited you the fuck in?” Hardcore Hunga Rocks springs up from the marble floor and says, “How the fuck can you afford all marble floors? Your record advance from could’ve been that big? Besides, didn’t you have to give that record advance back after you quit the band to take care of your dad?” Vinnie takes a quizzical puff from his Camel Extra wide and says, “Your Hardcore Hunga Rocks. I’ve seen your drum solos on YouTube. I’ve never heard anyone smash the drums with harder edge than you kid. You should call your band Aftershock for Christ’s sake. Hardcore Hunga Rock says, “I’m not in a band, but I would want to form a supergroup with you. If Jack White and his fake news sister can do it, we can to. Make out with your guitar all you want. In fact, I was thinking we can make a video spoof of the November Rain video and have you walk down the aisle with your cherished Fender Stratocaster while doing a remake of the serially underrated cult classic, Till Death To Us Part by White Lion. ” Vinnie says, “Shit that’s my favorite song after A Man I’ll Never Be.” So, you want to join forces to become a super White Lion cover group?” Hardcore Hunga Rocks says, “When the Shredder Frets has a beautiful tonal ring to it already. Weird Al, I fucked him, I can’t take no more. My Dad was a huge Dice fan to.” Vinnie laughs for the 1st time in years as an incredible warm crash of sea calm washes over him and says, “Fuck Boston and Pete Davidson, let’s make Staten Island stand for something stand out special more than Russian gangsters sipping on espresso drinks in 25th Hour. I sold plenty of blow in the eighties, which paid for my marble laden home despite never touching the stuff. Hunter Biden was the gift that kept on giving my freshman year at Georgetown University.

The End

Michael Kornbluth