“Gleefully wacky and irreverent.”

–The New York Times

“Line by line, Mr. Rudnick may be the funniest writer for the stage in the United States today.”

–The New York Times

“Deeply funny musings and adventures elevate Paul Rudnick to the highest level of American comedy writing.”

–Steve Martin

“One of the funniest quip-meisters on the planet.”

–The New York Times

“Paul Rudnick is a champion of truth (and love and great wicked humor) whom we ignore at our peril.”

–David Sedaris

“Quips fall with the regularity of the autumn leaves.”

–Associated Press

June 9, 2015

A Simple Purchase

epsonHow to buy a new printer/scanner/fax/whatever those machines are called:

1. Wait until your ancient fax machine becomes hopelessly jammed and finally dies.
2. Wait another two months, imagining that if you keep turning the broken machine on and off, it will miraculously fix itself.
3. Think about buying a new machine.
4. Almost buy a new machine.
5. Finally clear an entire day to go to Staples and buy a new machine.
6. Arrive at Staples. Locate the wall of printer/scanner/copier/whatevers. There are so many different models to choose from. Too many.
7. Realize that you should have checked Consumer Reports before going to Staples. HAHAHAHA.
8. Eavesdrop on a salesperson while he explains the choices to another customer. Understand nothing.
9. After the other customer leaves, discuss the many choices with the salesperson. Use a focused facial expression. Remember those cartoons where a man is talking to a dog and all the dog hears is “Blah, blah, blah,Skippy…blah,blah, blah, Skippy…” You are Skippy.
10. Ask the salesperson which machine he would recommend. Wonder if he’s paid extra by the manufacturer for this recommendation. Decide you don’t care if he’s lying about everything because you can’t breathe.
11. Realize that because all of the machines are black or gray, you can’t say, “I like the red one.”
12. Decide that buttons are better than a touch screen. PROGRESS! YAY!
13. Decide that a smaller machine is better than the ones which the salesperson is recommending, which are the size of Toyotas.
14. Decide that you will never need to copy anything on both sides.
15. Decide that you will never print out full-color photos of anything, because you would have to figure out how.
16. Decide that you don’t need three different trays for three different kinds of paper. WHO NEEDS THREE DIFFERENT KINDS OF PAPER?
17. As your vision starts to blur, just before you fall to the floor, point to a machine pretty much at random and say, “THAT ONE!”
18. Refuse to get any of the many forms of warranties and repair plans and Staples Rewards Cards. Even the salesperson can’t muster up much enthusiasm.
19. Buy extra cartridges because you are a SAVVY CONSUMER. Wonder why the cartridges cost more than the machine. I DON’T CARE. I HAVE TO GET OUT OF HERE.
20. Watch as the salesperson winds heavy tape around the huge box many times to create a carrying handle.
21. Cripple at least three people with the box on your way out.
22. Get the box into a cab. Because cabs are a technology you understand.
23. As you leave the cab, all the carrying tape breaks so you have to drag the box to your building’s front door.
24. Realize that for some reason your little insta-open magentic fob isn’t working, so you have to drop the box and find the right key.
25. Drag the box down the hall, into the elevator, down your own hall and into your apartment.
26. Leave the box right inside the front door. Possibly forever.
27. Contemplate the idea of opening the box and installing the machine. ON WHAT PLANET? IN WHAT LIFETIME? USING WHOSE BRAIN?
28. Have a package of chocolate-frosted mini-doughnuts. Another technology you understand.
29. Continue ignoring the large ungainly box.
30. Feel good about yourself. You accomplished something. Glance at the words on the box. WHAT IS AN ETHERNET? WHY DOES IT SOUND LIKE A MEANS OF ASSISTED SUICIDE? OR THE VILLAIN IN THE NEXT AUSTIN POWERS MOVIE?
31. Go to sleep. Maybe by the morning your old machine will have miraculously fixed itself. Out of pity.