Just to give all of our peeps the official heads up, Paul and I are going to Connecticon. If you're in (or near) Hartford between July 31 and August 2, hit us up and we'll give you any available time we have.

Whenever I'm too happy, too content with the world and my fellow travelers, I find that I start to become complacent. Luckily, the endless array of reality television on my cable box can restore me to insanity quickly and without remorse.

Last night, I found myself with an atypical surplus of free time. I decided to fill it with regular television watching. Not Hulu. Not DVR. Not Netflix. Just plain ol' television.

Back to reality TV; I understand the whole "rise of the EveryMan" thing, and I know that it's the only way for most people to achieve the kind of notoriety reserved for a miniscule percentage of the population. But man. Those judges require a whole nother language to contain their description. I feel they must serve some kind of purpose, but the meaning is lost on me. I need an audience with some dark shaman, surrounded by chicken bones and human candles, to understand why these specific people deserve to be elevated to their current level.

If I find myself up against the wall in some kind of bizarre intellectual revolution, I will admit that there is some invaluable insight into the human condition aching to be gleaned from these shows. But the sheer number of times I have to yell the phrases "You shut up and shut your face", "That doesn't mean what you think it means" and "WHORE" toward my television rules out any true philosophical progress.

I do applaud the undying professionalism of the service workers responsible for these shows; the camera-men, lighting directors, costume mavens and producers. Their jobs are thankless and empty but they perform them with aplomb and vigor.

Year One comes out this Friday. I believe it's on my to-do list.