My Totally Uninformed Take on Actual Celebrity News Headlines

  • “Lori Loughlin Asks for Passport Back Following College Admissions Scandal Prison Sentence” – Then it’s straight to International House of Pancakes.
  • “Jennifer Lopez Admits She and Alex Rodriguez Went to Therapy Amid COVID-19 Pandemic” – “…and then, Doctor, I caught him fist bumping the cabana girl.”
  • “Justin Timberlake Apologizes to Ex Britney Spears and Janet Jackson After Backlash” – “And while I’m at it, I take full responsibility for being the lookout at a Citibank® heist in 2003.”
  • “Former Bachelorette Rachel Lindsay Calls Dale Moss and Clare Crawley Split ‘Disappointing’” – Question: How long can you call yourself “Former Bachelorette” before your friends start to say, “It’s time to move on with your life.”
  • “Hailey Bieber shares touching tribute to her ‘Valentine’ Justin Bieber with PDA-filled slideshow with snaps from their wedding and tropical getaways” – “And here’s a shot of our hotel maid in the bathroom wrestling an iguana.”
  • “Chris Pratt proves he’s willing to go the distance for love as he flies back from Australia to celebrate Valentine’s Day with wife Katherine Schwarzenegger” – His final relationship test will be learning to spell “Schwarzenegger.”
  • “Brooke Burke EXCLUSIVE: The Dancing with The Stars vet, 49, reveals her top FIVE secrets for looking as good as she did when she was in her 20s” – Number One secret: Never appear in public without wearing a hazmat suit.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

Thoughts Better Kept to Myself

  • The only time I’ve felt comfortable in a crowd was at my intervention.
  • Show me a lonely billionaire, and I’ll show you someone incapable of building a robot friend.
  • I know I should love myself, but I’m not ready for a committed relationship.
  • I cried because I had no shoes until someone said, “You have lovely toes.”
  • I don’t like to rush people. Whenever I take someone’s picture, I always say, “Count to 250 and say cheese.”
  • Bad conversation starter: Nice shopping cart. Where did you steal it?
  • You are on a train that leaves the station at noon. The train is 187 miles from its destination at 2:45 p.m. and 90 miles from its destination at 4:15 p.m. How far will the train travel before you speak to the passenger sitting next to you?
  • I coulda been a contender, but I’m horrible at job interviews.
  • Networking tip: Share your experiences. People may not connect your face with your business card, but they’ll never forget the woman who talked about her alien abduction.
  • If I always listened with my heart, what would I do with my ears? 

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

I’m Mad as Hell! Should I Take This Anymore?

South Dakota Republican Rep Dusty Johnson asked his constituents to decide whether he should receive the COVID-19 vaccine now or wait until it is widely available. The response has been so strong, Johnson has decided to poll his voters on other issues.

  • “Should I order pepperoni or sausage on my pizza”?
  • “If my wife is out and I get a phone call asking ‘Is the woman of the house is there,’ should I say no or fake a woman’s voice and say, ‘This is she.’”
  • “Hypothetically speaking, if my political opponent claims he has a video of me illegally parking in a handicapped space in 2012, should I own up to my misdeed or claim I was saving the spot for my mother’s mobility scooter”?
  • “If I am continually criticized for being noncommittal and indecisive, should I hire a consultant to help me formulate a forceful and convincing response?”
  • “Is it ‘indecisive’ or ‘undecisive’”?

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

How to Have a Safe Thanksgiving (Turkey Excluded)

  • Move the children’s table out to the tool shed.
  • Point obnoxious relatives, who expend potentially lethal particles while explaining why Trump actually won the election, in the direction of an open window.
  • Warm chestnut stuffing is very pliable. Still, covering your face with it is no substitute for a mask.
  • Always get tested before and after cranberry sauce wrestling.
  • During family Zoom gatherings, make sure the children leave the room before Uncle Jeffrey Toobin logs on.
  • Don’t share food or drink with anyone. As an added precaution, dogs should drink out of separate toilets.
  • Stay at least six feet apart from anyone who does not live with you. Stay at least twelve feet apart from anyone you wish did not live with you.
  • Avoid touching your mask, eyes, nose, mouth – unless you’re putting the moves on yourself.
  • Make the meal more of a shared experience by deciding which family member has been the biggest disappointment.
  • It’s okay to loosen your belt after stuffing yourself with turkey, yams and green bean casserole. It’s not, however, okay to maintain any social distance between you and your pants.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

Trump’s Reaction to Losing

  • “I don’t like make excuses, but Hitler had more support in his bunker.”
  • “Dammit! I won’t be able to appoint the first Hell’s Angels member to a cabinet position.”
  • “I was very specific about this: I wanted an October, not December surprise!”
  • “Did Fauci just give me the finger on CNN?”
  • “Rudy says we can still void all the California votes.”
  • “I don’t understand it; we had such great hats.”
  • “New retroactive executive order: We sold Pennsylvania to Portugal.”
  • “I told you we should’ve used the pictures of Hunter Biden with Jane Fonda in Hanoi.”
  • “What do you mean Putin now has an unlisted number?”
  • “I don’t care if it’s screwed to the floor. I’m taking the Oval Office desk with me.”
  • “Ivanka, Jared, get in here. We’re doing a group self-pardon.”

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

What We’ve Learned from Jeffrey Toobin’s Zoom Doom

  • Contrary to what you may think, there is actually someone who understands less about modern technology than your parents.
  • Being unable to hug and shake hands online isn’t the worst thing that can happen.
  • Attorney Toobin will never again be able to ask, “Would you like to see my briefs?”
  • Zoom needs to create a second Mute button labeled “CLICK AND LEAVE THE ROOM.”
  • We should be thankful CNN always shot talking head Toobin from the neck up.
  • You can do a lot worse than Anthony Weiner.
  • If Zoom existed in 1925, lawyer Clarence Darrow might have been known for the Scopes Spanking the Monkey trial.
  • The next time someone resigns over a “personal matter,” don’t count on people fighting to get their cubicle.
  • Be thankful Harvey Weinstein went to jail before virtual meetings became popular.
  • It’s tough to be a public figure when you have less social media impulse control than Donald Trump.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

Generic Advice Column Answers

These should have you covered for any situation.

  • You need to get into counseling.
  • Maintaining a long-distance relationship requires extra effort. If you can’t afford airline tickets, consider flying as freight.
  • It may never be easy for her to accept you dressing as a woman. Try meeting her half way; go with a more butch look.
  • To calm your husband down, rub his belly.
  • To calm your dog down, rub his belly
  • Sending a wedding gift is not necessary if the bride’s family is responsible for you being deported back to Guatemala.
  • You really need to get into counseling
  • It’s unreasonable to ask your wife to remove tattoos of her old boyfriends’ names – especially if she took the time to list them in alphabetical order.
  • You’ll never have peace in your house as long as your mother-in-law is living with you. Have you considered moving her into a tastefully redecorated tool shed?
  • Being a bad cook is no excuse for ending a relationship. Insisting you buy your own stomach pump is.
  • You are not responsible for other people’s life decisions, even if you were driving the getaway car.
  • If your 88-year-old husband won’t stop chasing women, put a Denver boot on his wheel chair.
  • It’s never too late to find love and companionship. In fact, many people have found rich and rewarding lives with inflatable soulmates.
  • Unfortunately, in this superficial day and age, there are people who can’t get past a sudden 600-pound weight gain.
  • There’s no reason the voices in your head can’t get along. But if they don’t, all four of you most definitely need to get into counseling.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

College Alumni Notes That Didn’t Make the Final Cut

  • Emily Wells ’72 – After procrastinating for many years, I’m finally taking kazoo lessons.
  • Jacob Stein ’68 – I found my other pair of glasses.
  • Ernie Wallis ’10 – My wife and I joined a progressive political action committee which turned out to be a cult. It also partially explains why I’m writing this note with my own blood.
  • Cynthia Hastings ’12 – We adopted a beautiful Labrador retriever named Bailey and are now in a legal battle with its birth mother.
  • Nicholas Page ’78 – This year marks the twenty-fifth year our son has been living in our basement.
  • Nicholas Page Jr. ’91 – This year marks the twenty-fifth year I’ve been living in my parent’s basement.
  • George Stanky ’77 – My colleagues at the MIT Robotics department honored me with a lifetime achievement award. My wife, 38C-8D7 and I celebrated by taking a long-planned trip to Greece.
  • Alice Lerthy ’95 – Now that our last child has flown the nest, it’s just my husband, Lewis and I in our beautifully restored 20-room Victorian house. To give him more space, I’m building a 15-room she shed.
  • Tom Fortuna ’19 – I was honored by Subway for purchasing my 500th Footlong sandwich.
  • Ron Neel ’05 – I reconnected with Mary Strickland-Souza ’05 at our 15th reunion. Pending her divorce to Phil Souza ’05, we plan to move to Manhasset.
  • Phil Souza ’05 – I’m just beginning to get over the trauma of discovering my wife, Mary Strickland-Souza ’05 in Ron Neel ’05’s Holiday Inn room during our 15th reunion.
  • Ralph Willborne ’65 – I sold my company for 10 billion dollars. To this day, I still have no idea what we manufactured.
  • Lilly Tosh ’07 – Contrary to what you may have read in the news, our daughter Tiffany was accepted to our wonderful college on her own merit. Our $500,00 contribution to the school’s badminton program was purely coincidental.
  • Tara Tinsley ’15 – I’m currently on a book tour promoting my twelfth semi-autobiographical novel, “The Secret Life of a Lactose Intolerant Data Analyst.”
  • Steve Greely ’12 – I’m still living in my dorm room. This semester I will have audited my one thousandth course.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

Speed Dating Saves Time. Why Not Speed Relationships?

Speed dating is a great way to quickly meet a lot of potential mates. Why spend an evening getting to know one person who likes candle-lit dinners and long walks on the beach when you can meet ten or twenty?

Neil, a freelance card counter from Reno, Nevada has one gone one step further. He has embraced speed relationships. “I enjoy companionship, but I’m basically a solitary person who needs his own space. After 90 minutes with someone, I’m ready to move on, go home and stare into the abyss.”

Now, using dating apps, he’s had over 1000 fulfilling relationships in the last six months.

“Speed relationships perfectly suit my lifestyle. After meeting someone online, having a great dinner and an interesting conversation, I’m ready to suggest we should start seeing other people. It doesn’t mean I’m not a romantic. I’ll always cherish our hour together as well as the Ultimate Nachos special.”

Neil says speed relationships have other advantages.

  • It’s the one and only time you’ll meet. There’s no chance your date will ever complain, “We never go anywhere!”
  • Ambivalence about introducing your new girl or guy to your parents is never an issue – unless they’re sitting in the booth next to you.
  • Height disparities are irrelevant since the relationship will probably conclude with both people sitting down.
  • As long as you space your dates at least ten minutes apart, infidelity will never be an issue.
  • You’ll be long gone before the thrill is gone.

Consider giving speed relationships a try. And remember, love is never having to say, “I promise I’ll call you.”

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”

The New Abnormal: Preparing For A Job Interview

Finding work in any job market is not easy. Finding work in today’s “new normal” job market is even tougher. The key, as always, is to stand out among the crowd. Here are some tips that can help give you an edge up on the competition.

  • Research the company with which you’ll be interviewing. For example, does it have a comprehensive COVID-19 policy? Or do they have Friday afternoon hydroxychloroquine chugging parties?
  • Wearing a mask is now standard garb for all interviews. Wearing a ski mask is only required when interviewing for an armed robbery team.
  • Many job interviews are now conducted by phone. Avoid rookie mistakes like asking, “How much does the job pay?” or “What are you wearing?”
  • Job interviews are also now conducted on video conferencing apps like Zoom and Facetime. Dress appropriately during these meetings. For example, avoid wearing outfits that reveal large tattoos – particularly tattoos on your buttocks.
  • Your background during video interviews also says a lot about you. A neatly organized bookcase is good. A neatly stacked pile of empty Ben & Jerry containers is not.
  • Have an updated resume available. And remember, you haven’t been laying on your couch for the past five months. You’ve been doing research on binge watching Netflix during a pandemic.
  • Treat everyone you encounter with respect. For instance, this may be the first time you’ve spoken to a human being in months, but don’t blame anyone for the fact your boyfriend left you for the Grubhub delivery guy.
  • Don’t appear resentful if your interviewer uses your “I guess this is the new normal” line before you have a chance to.
  • Don’t say anything negative about your previous employers – particularly the employer who fired you for self-quarantining in her executive bathroom.
  • Score a success in the first five minutes. In this day and age, the company may declare bankruptcy after that.

Ben Alper writes for late night talk show hosts, comedians and others. He is the author of “Thank You for Not Talking: A Laughable Look at Introverts.”