Christmas Party Like A TV Star

Christmas SetSorry for the late post tonight, Modern Philosophers, but I was out partying like a TV star.

Well, at least like a writer for the highest rated late night TV show in Maine!  Tonight was The Nite Show With Danny Cashman Christmas Party!

As you know, Modern Philosophers, I am always filled with the Christmas Spirit, but there isn’t much going on at The House on the Hill this year.  So I was thrilled when I received Danny’s invite for the show’s Christmas Party.

We met at Season’s, a restaurant downtown, and had a whole room to ourselves for our Nite Show Holiday shenanigans.

christmas choirEveryone was there.  Well, maybe not the entire Christmas Choir (pictured at the left), but Anna, the lead singer was.

It was an intimate gathering of people who work so hard to put on a very cool TV show.  We’re always so busy on the night of a taping, so it was nice to finally have time to just hang out together and chat.

Sure, I had to remind some of the members of the band that my name isn’t really Timbo, but I kind of like it when they call me that.

Danny gave a heartfelt speech to thank us for what we do to make The Nite Show a reality.  He told us how the ratings continue to improve, and the exec from WABI, the station that airs the show in Bangor, nodded in emphatic agreement.

I was really touched when Danny thanked the writers, and then mentioned me and a few of the other writers by name.  That was really cool because everyone knows the writers are  an unheralded bunch since we’re rarely in front of the camera.

Danny DeskThere was excellent food, including delicious chicken wings.  It was as if Danny read this blog and knew how much I love wings!  The drinks were flowing.  The conversation was excellent.  We even tossed around some sketch ideas.

As the party wound down, Danny stayed to chat with a smaller group of us, and told stories from the very early days of the show.

Even though we were supposed to be relaxing, we kept talking about ideas to attract larger, younger audiences to the show.  Fellow writer Dave suggested that I would come up with some ideas, and Danny surprised me by telling the group that I had already come up with some very good ideas for attracting audience members.

Again, I was touched.  So it ended up being a great Christmas Party for this Modern Philosophers and Nite Show Writer.  Not only did I receive the gifts of food, drink, and camaraderie, but Danny also said a couple of nice things that made me feel like all this effort I’d been putting in for the show was well worth it.

nite show logoI know this is a bit of a rambling post, Modern Philosophers, but I’m just filled with the Christmas Spirit.

It’s great to be appreciated and a part of a team.  It’s also a nice change to have a job that doesn’t feel like work at all.

Making a TV show is a blast.  You should all give it a shot some time…

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Blue Christmas? Nope, The North Pole Just Went Blue For Hanukkah

North PoleI’ll have a blue Christmas without you, I’ll be so blue just thinking about you. Decorations of red on a green Christmas tree, Won’t be the same, dear, if you’re not hear with me…

Elvis’ rendition of “Blue Christmas” blared over the loudspeakers at The North Pole today, Modern Philosophers, but everyone was far from sad.

Santa Claus declared that all the lights at The North Pole should be changed to blue, and he even wore his rarely seen blue suit in celebration of Hanukkah.

“Hanukkah Harry is a dear friend, Austin,” Blue Santa reminded me via Skype as Elvis continued to croon in the background.  “I can’t be out there with him tonight because I haven’t gotten my medical clearance to fly yet, but I wanted Harry to know that we were all there with him in spirit!”

And when those blue snowflakes start falling, That’s when those blue memories start calling.  You’ll be doing all right with your Christmas of white, But I’ll have a blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas…

PS101509015And a blue day they had at The North Pole!

Snowmen wore blue scarves, the Reindeer made practice runs with a blue sleigh, and the Elves wore blue hats and shoes.

Menorahs joined the lamps that lined the streets of The North Pole, dreidels spun on tables along with tops and other toys, and a Star of David topped the Christmas Tree in the town square.

“It was touched when Kris called to tell me what he’d done,” a verklempt Hanukkah Harry admitted to this Modern Philosopher.  “The big guy is such a mensch, and I insisted that we go out on the town some night soon in our matching blue suits.  Once they catch a load of him in that get up, the ladies will know for sure that Santa Claus has come to town!”

You’ll be doing all right with your Christmas of white, But I’ll have a blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas…

Even Mrs. Claus got in on the act.  “I made matzo ball soup for lunch, as it was a very cold day, and Harry got Santa hooked on it during his last visit.  After soup, it was bagels and lox that I had flown up from Bagels on the Square at your suggestion, Austin.  Of course, I made sure there was enough for everyone.”

blue elvisSanta’s brother Fred was the only one not excited about The North Pole’s Blue Christmas Hanukkah celebration.  “Don’t get me wrong, brother, I love Harry and think his Holiday is the bomb, but we’ve got work to do.  Christmas Eve is in eight crazy days, and I’ve got my entire workforce spinning dreidels and asking the big guy’s wife for extra lox and a smear.  Oy!”

Santa assured me that in the end, even his little brother came around to joy in the fun.  “Fred is just intent on showing that he’s turned over a new leaf.  He wants to take over when I retire, and he knows he’s got to prove to me that he’s ready.”

Did Santa want to give his favorite Modern Philosopher the scoop on his retirement plans?

“Ho! Ho! Ho!” he laughed and his belly shook like a bowl full of jelly.  “This day is about Hanukkah Harry and his Holiday, Austin.  I’m not going to announce anything that would take the spotlight away from Hanukkah.”

happy-hanukkahAs “Blue Christmas” started up again in the background, Santa told me that he planned to let the Elves off early for Hanukkah.  “I know that’s going to give Fred an ulcer, but no one is working after sundown.  I’m still the boss around here.”

Could the boss take Elvis off repeat?  I hear Adam Sandler has a song that might be a little more appropriate for the Holiday…

Happy Hanukkah, Modern Philosophers!

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Hanukkah Harry Hints At Getting His Own Sleigh


Here’s a classic from the early days of the blog. Happy Hanukkah, Modern Philosophers!

Originally posted on The Return of the Modern Philosopher:

Hanukkah HarryAs I broke on this blog earlier in the week, Modern Philosophers, Hanukkah Harry rode along with Santa Claus this year as Flying Monkeys provided a security escort.

Santa and his entourage arrived back at The North Pole without incident, and his co-pilot called this Modern Philosopher to talk about his wild night.

“Austin, I’ve never had such a time,” Harry yelled excitedly into the phone.  “Oh what fun it was to ride in a reindeer guided sleigh.  But speaking of the reindeer…they do stink.  There are no words to describe the stench.  That was the one draw back to it all.  That and the fact that it gets so cold.”

The North Pole Security Agency received “highly credible intel” (Read Here!) about a threat against Santa Claus, so tensions were high as the sleigh made its way around the world.  Was Harry at all scared for his…

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Hanukkah Harry Hangin’ At The House On The Hill

The House on the HillHanukkah begins tomorrow, Modern Philosophers!

As is tradition, Hanukkah Harry spent the day at The House on the Hill, where we drank Snapple and ate bagels he brought from Bagels on the Square.

“This is such a beautiful house, Austin, but I’m just going to say it,” Harry warned me as he wiped cream cheese from his beard.  “It’s not a home.  This place needs a woman’s touch desperately.  As do you judging from how stressed you look.”

We both had a good laugh at that one, and I held up my Snapple in toast to Harry’s wit.

“Seriously, this place is crying out for someone who realizes that “NYU Dorm Room” is not a proper interior decorating option.  I always make sure I’m careful where I walk when I’m here because I don’t want to smear the chalk outlines on the floor and cause the poor coroner to have to do his work all over again.”

Hanukkah Harry always knew when I needed a good laugh, and he made sure he had his best material for his annual Hanukkah Eve visit.

Hanukkah HarryI tried to convince him to meet with Danny Cashman so he could write for The Nite Show, but Harry just waved off the idea, and thrust another bagel onto my plate.

“Maine’s about 1% Jewish,” he reminded me as he passed me the bacon horseradish cream cheese.  “If I’m going to make it in show business, I’ll need an audience that’s a little more diverse.”

“And stop trying to distract me with your talk of a glamorous life writing for the Late Night King of Maine.  When are you going to find a nice girl to turn this place into something that’s no longer worthy of the cover of Hermit’s Weekly?”

I knew Harry wouldn’t give up, not when he was on this much of a sugar high from three bottles of Snapple, so I explained to him how the dating process had been going.

“Well it’s something at least,” he said with a smile.  “I wouldn’t write a screenplay about it, though, because people like uplifting stories, and that one is just pathetic.  What’s wrong with you?  You’re a handsome guy with an education, a job, a sense of humor, and a wonderful imagination.  You can’t cook up a back story interesting enough to trick a woman into going on a second date?”

Harry laughed, and slapped me on the shoulder, but he could sense that my ego had taken enough of a beating for one afternoon.

Bagels“You know I kid.  Just don’t let your love life become like Hanukkah,” he advised.  “Don’t let one drop of heartbreak last another two years, so to speak.”

I nodded and focused my attention on the delicious bagels Harry had brought me from Bagels on the Square.

“I’m going out tomorrow to spread joy to one percent of Maine’s population, and I’d like to know I at least put a smile on the face of my favorite Catholic.”

I smiled for Harry because he deserved it.  The man was a saint (wait…do Jews even have saints?) and he was trying so hard to spread a little Hanukkah Happiness at The House on the Hill.

I promised him that I would make a concerted effort in the new year to go on more dates, and to try my best to see to it that there were a few second dates in the mix.  I could not go so far as to promise any third dates, though.

“I think trying to earn a second date is a reasonable goal for 2015,” Harry said with a snicker as he read the fact inside his Snapple cap.  “Can I suggest you set one more goal before the Holiday Season ends?”

I nodded.  It was the night before Hanukkah began, and there was no way I was going to turn down a request from Hanukkah Harry.

happy-hanukkah“Put up some decorations.  Some twinkling lights, a giant tree, maybe a wreath, and colorful ornaments would put this place on the right track to being a home.  If you sit here moping in the darkness, Santa’s never going to bring you a new love of your life.”

He got me started by setting up a menorah on the mantel.  I can always count on Hanukkah Harry to be in my corner…

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Monday Morning Coffee Club: 12/15/14

Cofee signThe screeching alarm clock next to my bed has informed me that Monday has returned, Modern Philosophers.


I have been on vacation since Wednesday afternoon, so I am dreading my return to the office.  The scar from my shackles was just starting to heal, and now it’s going to get all ugly again when they chain me to my desk.


What if I don’t remember how to get back to the office?  It’s not like Zombie Car is equipped with GPS and I can command it to “Take me back to the bad place”.

If I did that, I’d be stuck in the driveway all day.  I wouldn’t mind, but my neighbors might eventually call the police out of concern for my well being after watching me bark orders at my car for hours.

Hopefully, there isn’t a pile of work waiting for me upon my return.  Isn’t that the worst, Modern Philosophers?  You earn the vacation time, you use it, but the work from the days you missed is still there.  Doesn’t seem at all fair, does it?

Of course, I could be like some of my coworkers and spend the morning taking a victory tour, going from cubicle to cubicle, and regaling others with tales of my time away from the office.  That is well within my rights as I’ve witnessed it being done on far too many occasions.

However, my work ethic would not allow such behavior.  I’m sure I’ll get to work a little early, and begin the process of catching up and getting back up to speed.  I was raised to work hard and give it my all, and it’s too late to teach this old dog any lazy tricks.

MondayChristmas is on the horizon, so I hope the office was decorated some more in my absence.  My return won’t be so bad if I end up walking into a Winter Wonderland.

I’m just fearful that I’ll be wandering into blizzard conditions.  UGH!

So what kind of work ethic do you have, Modern Philosophers?  Do you jump right back into the fray upon your return from vacation?  Or do you ease into it, and do the vacation victory tour around the office?

Help yourself to some coffee, and keep in mind that there’s only seventeen hours left to this horrible day…

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I’m Dreaming Of A Zombie Christmas

ZombiesI’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas,

And not sleeping well,

Which blows.

When I close my eyes,

I can only hear

Hungry Zombies

Trudging through the snow.

I’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas

Haunted by nightmares

Bloody and gray,

They stink of rotting flesh

And humanity’s decay.

I’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas

So what the hell

Is wrong with me?

Is my subconscious

Reprimanding me

For not putting up

A tree?

I’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas,

And I don’t know

If that’s Naughty or Nice.

All I know

Is that Zombies chase me,

Through knee deep snow

And cracking ice.

I’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas,

I blame it on

The Walking Dead.

It’s Rick and Maggie

And Daryl’s fault

That I’ve got

Walkers in my head.

I’m dreaming

Of a Zombie Christmas,

And I don’t know

What to do.

Is there such a thing

As Zombie Hanukkah?

Maybe I’d sleep better

As a Jew…

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Don’t Be A Scrooge And Reject This Holiday Cheer!

Danny DeskHappy Sunday, Modern Philosophers!

A new episode of The Nite Show With Danny Cashman aired last night, which means I can share some of the monologue jokes I wrote that did not make it onto TV.

It was a festive night, with the set decorated for the Holidays, and Santa Claus in the house as Danny’s guest.

Correction.  The chubby guy on the show was actually Maine Governor Paul LePage.

I left these jokes under The Nite Show Christmas Tree, but they were left unopened.  Hopefully, you’ll want to unwrap and enjoy these Rejects, the Misfit Toys of the late night TV joke world…

Governor Paul LePage is here tonight.  Fun Fact: While the Governor enjoys appearing as a guest on our show, he is NOT a fan of dressing up as Santa Claus to get some cheap laughs in a Christmas themed sketch…

Governor LePage is our guest tonight.  I intend to ask him what’s on his Christmas list, but how could he possibly expect anything else after the enormous surprise gift he received on Election Day?

governorGovernor Paul LePage is our guest tonight, so we know for certain that for at least the next half hour, he cannot cut your MaineCare benefits…

Governor LePage is our guest tonight.  Don’t worry, I had the crew reinforce the stage to ensure that it will be able to support both his weight and my ego…

Governor LePage is our guest tonight on the campus of Husson University.  Don’t worry, Husson, you’re not a state school, so the Governor isn’t here to cut your budget or shut you down…

Charles Manson is getting married to a 26 year old.  I hear the only reason she said “yes” was so that she could meet his brother Marilyn…

To celebrate the 60th Anniversary of “White Christmas”, the film will be reopening in select cities across the country.  Something tells me that two of those cities will not be Branson, MO or Staten Island, NY…

Christmas SetThere have been a lot of complaints about the cancellation of Bangor’s Festival of Lights Parade last weekend due to inclement weather.  Mayor Sprague wanted to go ahead with the parade, but he was ultimately overruled by Burgermeister Meisterburger…

Hanukkah begins on Tuesday.  Much like the Holiday that celebrates one drop of oil lasting for eight days, The Nite Show has managed to make one month’s worth of jokes last for four years…

The trailer for the new Star Wars movie debuted the day after Thanksgiving, and some fans are upset that it did not include any of the characters from the original trilogy.  Director JJ Abrams explained that Luke, Leia, and Han Solo were all in the trailer, but he had them digitally removed at the last second so that it didn’t look like a commercial for a cheesy 80’s sci-fi flick…

It looks like the Ghost of Christmas Past has finally caught up with Bill Cosby…

nite show logoSo what did you think of the Rejects, Modern Philosophers?  Do you think Danny did the right thing by not telling any of the Governor LePage jokes that would’ve earned me a spot on Santa’s Naughty List?

Remember, you can support The Nite Show by liking its Facebook page, checking out the YouTube page, or following in on Twitter @TheNiteShowME.


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