Murphy’s Law – Pointless reboot: An open letter to the douchebag sitting next to me at the Louis C.K. show

Joel Murphy

Joel Murphy

I’m going to level with all of you.

It’s a slow news week and frankly I’m having trouble coming up with something worth ranting about. As we make that awkward transition from summer to fall (in this painfully boring in-between time where the Hollywood blockbuster season is just about over, but fall TV hasn’t begun yet), there just isn’t a whole lot going on. Celebrities are hanging out on exotic beaches instead of making asses of themselves in Hollywood clubs. No one is slipping up and saying anything horribly offensive on Twitter. All is quiet on the Internets.

So since Hollywood isn’t giving me any good fodder, I decided to take a page out of their playbook this week. I decided to “reboot” one of my old columns, Hollywood-style. Instead of coming up with a new idea, I thought I would simply take something I already came up with, repackage it and sell it to you again. So this week, I’m “reimagining” a column I wrote on May 2, 2006 entitled: “An open letter to the douchebag sitting next to me at the Louis C.K. show.” I’m offering up the column again this week along with the notes I imagine I would have gotten from Hollywood execs and the subsequent changes made in order to make it appeal to the average 2011 moviegoer.

So put on your 3D glasses and enjoy this repackaged gem …

Murphy’s Law – An open letter to the douchebag sitting next to me at the Louis C.K. show

[Note – The word douchebag didn’t test well with our focus groups, let’s drop it from the title. Also, the title seems too long – it might alienate those with short attention spans.]

Murphy’s Law – The Letter

I’m sorry I didn’t get a chance to speak to you during the actual show. I would have, but you know, I’m actually a considerate person who doesn’t talk while the comedians are trying to perform. I know this is a foreign [Note – the word “foreign” isn’t going to play well in foreign markets] an unfamiliar concept to you, since you had no problem talking during the show.

[Note – We need to cash in on some of that Dark Knight magic, so let’s make this reboot grittier.]

Maybe I shouldn’t have let your talking bother me, but I just really needed a laugh. After my parents were kidnapped by the cartel and I was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor, all I had to look forward to was this show. This one night was my only chance to laugh ever again before it all faded to darkness and my body fell into eternal slumber.

[Note – Not bad, but a little too gritty. Maybe something a little more Twilight-y.]

Not that the inoperable tumor could actually kill me. Nothing could now that the sparkly, gorgeous – but not so gorgeous that she alienates female readers – vampire girl bit me. Oh sure, that cute werewolf girl at school would try to take me down for not choosing her, but even she couldn’t stop me.

[Note – Perfect.]

Who knows, maybe you were mistaken and thought you and your friends were in your living room. That would certainly explain why you propped your feet up on the stage before the show began. I was happy to be sitting in the front row of the comedy club and I found my accommodations to be quite comfortable. I certainly didn’t feel the need to lean back in my chair and kick my dogs up onto the stage, but then again, I’m not a bag of douche.

Of course, none of that really bothered me as much as when you answered your phone [Note – don’t forget to add in the product placement we worked out with the sponsors] ultra-fast Motorola Atrix 4G Android Phone, complete with a four-inch qHD touchscreen, GPS navigation, 16 GB of memory and up to nine hours of talk time, available only from AT&T, while the opening comedian was performing. Was this your first time ever at a comedy club? You were sitting in the front row and you answered your phone. You really thought this wouldn’t be a problem? I’m amazed you were even able to get out of bed and dress yourself (of course, I wasn’t there – perhaps you had help).

When the comedian on stage saw you on your phone and started making fun of you, did you really think you were talking your way out of the situation? How big is your ego? Did you really think, “I’ll simply explain to her that it’s my father calling long distance and surely she will understand the extenuating circumstances and will allow me to have my loud, obnoxious conversation in peace while she continues telling jokes that I’m not actually listening to?” And, when she asked your name and you giggled and told her Pedro, was that your own attempt at comedy? Did it really strike you as humorous to come up with a wacky fake name? Because, if it did, you should have saved the money you spent on the Improv and just stayed at home and watched Yes, Dear [Note – The kids today don’t know what Yes, Dear is, grandpa] Rules of Engagement. Or better yet, you could have passed the time by ramming your head against a brick wall, you sad, pathetic man.

[Note – there’s not enough action in this column. We want this to be an action comedy. Also, can you add in a pointless celebrity cameo? People love that.]

What shocked me the most was that you continued to talk on your phone, even as those masked men rushed into the club and took us all hostage. Sure, talking to your dad is important, but how could you keep the conversation going when they threatened to kill us all if we didn’t come up with one million dollars. If Chuck Norris hadn’t been there to save the day, we all would have been done for (except me, because I’m a vampire).

The most baffling part of all is that you were actually sitting at a table with other people. I would think someone as annoying and socially inept as you wouldn’t have any friends, but no, they seemed to be hanging out with you by choice. As your friends, I would hope that they would have stepped up and corrected your moronic social behavior, but considering that their cellphones also rang during the show, I guess that is a bit too much to ask.

They were also talking loudly and being equally as obnoxious, so maybe it is unfair to single you out. But, I guess I’m hoping that by making an example out of you, your pals and all of the other inconsiderate morons of the world will take notice and learn from your mistakes. Of course, that is probably just a pipe dream, considering YOUR FRIENDS WERE TOO DUMB TO TURN OFF THEIR CELLPHONES AFTER A COMEDIAN MADE FUN OF YOU FOR BEING ON YOURS! [Note – this part could use a cheesy catchphrase.] DO YOU UNDERSTAND THE WORDS THAT ARE COMING OUT OF MY MOUTH?!?

Did you see what you made me do, douchebag? I’m typing in all caps and using exclamation points because of you. I hope you can live with yourself for that.

Look, I don’t expect you to change. You’ve made it this far in your life without becoming a better person and this isn’t an After School Special on PBS, so I’m guessing your douchey-ness is for life. I get that, I respect that. So just do me a favor. Don’t sit in the front row of a comedy club and draw attention to yourself. Sit somewhere in the back where stage lights won’t find you and your douchedom might go unnoticed. Or better yet, don’t even leave your fucking house. Louis C.K.’s comedy special still runs on HBO from time to time and soon they will be running his sitcom, Lucky Louie. So just stay at home and watch that. [Note – Louis C.K. isn’t going to bring in young viewers, we need to recast this role with someone the kids like]. Channing Tatum’s movies still run on HBO all the time. So just stay at home and watch them instead of attending Tatum’s live break dancing/underground cage fights. That way, you can still enjoy the comedy break dancing/underground cage fight without ruining it for everyone else.

You know what, on second thought, why don’t you just kill yourself? It’s pretty obvious you aren’t a productive member of society, so come on, make Darwin proud. Thin the herd.

[Note – this ending is too dark. It’s going to make audiences sad. And sad audience members don’t buy movie tie-in merchandise. Go with a Happy Hollywood finish.]

You know what, on second thought, let’s put our differences aside and hang out. Sure, we are complete opposites – an “Odd Couple” if you will – but our wacky difference will be the catalyst for some amazing hijinks. Together, we can team up to win Channing Tatum’s break dancing/underground cage fighting competition and save the rec center. Also, the tournament will give me a chance to defeat the man who killed my father. But best of all, it may help me win over Marcy, the girl I’ve always loved, but can’t seem to find a way to tell her. Together, we can do it all, douchebag.

All the best,

Joel Murphy

P.S. That Louis C.K. is hilarious, isn’t he? I love the stuff about his daughter. Have you tried Coke Zero? It’s delicious.

Joel Murphy is the creator of HoboTrashcan, which is probably why he has his own column. He loves pugs, hates Jimmy Fallon and has an irrational fear of robots. You can contact him at

  1. Bill August 18, 2011
  2. Groundloop August 19, 2011

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