Someone Isn’t Sleeping Much

by Brett Battles

Me again! That’s right, two weeks in a row. Our fabulous Zoë is in the middle of her USA tour, so we’ve switched our order up just a bit to give her time to get over her jet lag…(Zoë, her hubby Andy, our lovely Alex, and I had dinner on Tuesday night here in L.A. It was great catching up!)

Those people who know me well, know that I’m not a huge complainer, especially in public. I’m always the kind of person that lets things go, and finds ways to work around problems instead of through them.

Well…I’m tired today. The schedule I’ve been keeping this year is exhausting me, but I can’t bring myself to back down. I have too much to do. What does that have to do with complaining? (Other than the fact that it’s a complaint in itself?) When I’m tired, I’m less likely to have my guard up, and more likely to rant. So there are a few things I’d like to rant about today in no particular order (warning: there will be a lot of italics):

The NFL (National Football League, for those of you outside the US)

Get. Your. Damn. Act. Together!

You have, by far, the most popular sport in this country. Stop your idiotic feuding and get your labor deal done. I’m looking at all of you—owners and players alike. It is horrendously stupid that there is even a problem. Owners…locking out your players? Come on! What are you, five? Grow up! Players…suggesting that top college prospects not attend the NFL Draft, a once in a lifetime event? Are you kidding me? I understand you’re trying to have some sort of solidarity, and the last thing you want is your new players shaking hands with “the enemy,” but think a little outside your own shadow. For these kids, it’s not about money or collective bargaining, it’s about the recognition of the work they’ve put in so far. And shaking hands with the enemy? The commissioner is not your enemy. The owners are not your enemy. And, commissioner and owners, the players are not your enemy. You are partners in a game. You get to be involved with something millions of Americans would love to be involved with.

And, for God’s sakes, if you want to win the fan vote, quit bitching at each other and get a deal done!


Screw you, and this whole passengers-have-to-pay-for-bags BS. This is ridiculous! Every time I see a commercial about special deals where there are reduced bag fees, or if you have this credit card your first bag is free, I want to pick up my television, and jam it down your throat. For crying out loud, can you not see how stupid this is?

“Well, it’s not fair to passenger who don’t fly with bags.” I got news for you. I seldom fly with bags if I’m going to be gone for a few days, and I still think this is dumb! When people travel they have luggage. The assumption should not be that luggage is an exception, it is the rule. The ticket price should include at least one bag, probably two. For fifty years, that was never a problem. Raise your ticket price if that’s what it takes. Charging for bags is nitpicky and makes you look cheap and obnoxious. Until this happens, it’s a pretty good bet that if Southwest is flying where I’m going, that’s the airline I’ll be on. Do you not do any PR research at all??


Long time customer, first time (public) complainer…don’t know why it’s taken me so long.

Seriously, AT&T, I live in the middle of Los Angeles. The Middle of Los Angeles! I don’t live in a sparsely populated area. I don’t live in the mountains. I don’t live all alone in the middle of nowhere.

I live in the middle of Los Angeles.

The La Brea Tar Pits are a five minute walk from my front door. The L.A. County Museum of Art is a five minute walk from my front door. The Grove, one of the most popular malls in the city, is a five minute walk from my front door. And I can’t get a decent signal in my house? Are you kidding me???

To make a call, I have to go upstairs (I live in a townhouse), and even then, more times than not, the call gets dropped. Don’t tell me I could fix this by getting one of those home hotspot kind of things. Why should I pay even more money when getting a signal here shouldn’t even be an issue?

I live.

In the Middle.

Of Los Angeles.

Maybe you haven’t heard of it. There are, like, ten million of us in the county.

Get it together, AT&T. I don’t need excuses. I don’t really need reasons why, either. I need this problem fixed…three years ago.

Okay, that’s it. I’m done for now. I’ve got work to do, because I know the last thing I want to do is disappoint my fans/customers.

Feel free to comment or add your rant below.  

28 thoughts on “Someone Isn’t Sleeping Much

  1. Jeremy

    Regarding the NFL: MLB lost me with the 90s strike and this is doing nothing to draw me to football. Both sides are loaded beyond words, yet I live in a state where the NFL team is demanding the public pay for the majority of a new stadium.

    Screw both sides. Football draws millions and should finance the stadiums they play in. Listening to all parties piss and moan only makes strengthens my resolves to fight any public financing of a new stadium.

  2. Reine

    Brett, I love a man who can rant. Such a great rant!

    Here's my piddling little rant: Steve was going to go to a football game this weekend. Wisconsin is playing :some other team: in Tucson. The tickets are $100 each. Like wHY? . I told him he should go anyway, but he said he didn't have any clothes the right color. He says not wearing red to a Wisconsin game is like wearing a Yankees cap at Fenway Park. Yeah, I don't know.

    I love my Patriots. They're not NFL. Are they? They have to be AFL, with a name like the New England Patriots. Right? So my football season is safe? Right? Please.

  3. JD Rhoades

    Tell it, brother! And as for this:

    "it’s a pretty good bet that if Southwest is flying where I’m going, that’s the airline I’ll be on."

    This has been the rule for me since before bag fees.

  4. Brett Battles

    I hear ya' Jeremy. We're going through stadium issues here in L.A., too, and we don't even have a team committed yet.

    Reine…delusion is a wonderful thing. You just keep thinking the way you're thinking. Go Pats.

    Smart move, Dusty. Smart move.

  5. PK the Bookeemonster

    NFL: They lost me at a player comparing the way they are treated to slavery. Excuse me? You're paid millions?? Have perks galore?? Sorry, no sympathy.

    Employment: my temp job at unemployment insurance may be up in June so I'm putting in apps again. The response? <sound of crickets> Since when did it become the norm that employers don't even give you a rejection letter anymore?

    Speaking of unemployment: a claimant who wants to backdated to DECEMBER –hasn't requested any benefits at all, hasn't registered with Job Service still, didn't respond to request for info on his separation and calls in now and wants benefits going back to December. Puh lease.

    Okay, I feel better now. This is fun.

  6. Zoë Sharp

    LOL Brett

    Thanks for unburdening your soul to us today – and also for taking over my spot while I'm away. Thank you for showing us the delights of Farmer's Market, and it was great to see you and Alex.

    A few rants? (oh, don't get me started…)

    1) Hotels that give you 38 shopping channels for worthless tat, but no MTV or VH1. I mean, come on – if your sound deadening between rooms is so awful, then limit the volume but give me some music!

    2) Hotels with really bad sound deadening between rooms. I do NOT want to hear the couple next door shagging, thank you very much. And I've no MTV to either drown it out, or at least provide a rhythm…

    3) People on planes who carry on LOUD conversations with their neighbours while I'm trying to work, dammit.

    4) We've now been in the States since last Wed, and I believe we may have seen five or even six people who are NOT talking/texting on their cellphones while driving. Trust me people, none of the conversations you're having are important enough to justify this, or the accident you're about to become involved in.

    And … relax.

  7. Allison Davis

    OMG, you are channeling us all Brett especially with AT&T…

    Keihls — very reputable company for skin care products. The SPF moisturizer takes the lettering off the package if it drips. Ick.

    NYT and WSJ: my local SF Chronicle's ink doesn't come off on my hands….why does yours?

    There's a reason Jeff Smisek says "clean" before "safe" in the new United announcements. The difference between Jet Blue terminals and United terminals is like the Fairmont and Hotel 6 (no offence to Hotel 6)

    And if they allow people to talk on cell phones (how in the world could I hear every word of the guy's inane conversation across the entire terminal?) in airplanes I'm walking.

    Oh, and bag fees? Why does it take 45 minutes to load the airplane? Because everyone wants to check for free so they lug their suitcases to the gate and check them there. Great article in the WSJ about how more people would fly (i.e., more revenues) without bag fees….

    Ah, nice. Good catharsis for a Thursday.

    And when this stuff gets to you, Dalai Lama's lesson for the week: "It is clear than inner peace is the principal cause of happiness. We can observe this in our daily lives. On days when we are calm and happy, even if difficulties arise or we fall victim to a mishap, we take it well, it doesn't bother us unduly. But on days when we feel sad or have lost our usual calmness, the least little annoyance will take on enormous proportions and be deeply upsetting to us."

    I have to remember, sometimes it's not them, it's me.

  8. Barbie

    Brett, you made me laugh out loud with your post. I have serious sleeping issues, and I'm often referred to by my family as a "five year old without her nap": I *loved* this blog post. I hate the whole no phone signal thing. I, too, live in a big city (not huge as LA, but 3 million people city), and, in my flipping living room, AND bedroom, there's a dead spot for my phone carrier. I mean, REALLY??? That drives me nuts, too!!!

    Hope you get some seep 🙂

  9. Brett Battles

    PK, glad to provide the forum to help.

    Zoë, totally enjoyed dinner the other night! Have a great time on the rest of your tour!

    Allison…that newspaper ink issue sounds stupid and lazy. What the hell's wrong with them?

    Barbie, I could have probably done the whole post on AT&T!

  10. Rae

    Great post, Brett!

    RE the NFL: I get that the players are richer than the vast majority of us. But they lose 2 – 3 years of life expectancy for every year they play, and they’re the ones giving us our entertainment. And for the owners to try and grab another billion out of the pie before they even start to talk to the players just doesn’t work for me. The thing to remember is, the players don’t get any contracts that the owners can’t afford. And oh, by the way, while I’m being cranky about football, someone needs to explain to me why they’re not reviewing the Calvin Johnson rule this off-season. Argh.

    On the ranting front:

    When did everyone lose their ability to behave decently in public? I’m talking to you, guy who steps on my (broken) foot because he’s in such a hurry to get through the turnstile a nano-second before me. And you, little gal who pries open the elevator doors and then holds them open so you can finish your inane conversation. And all of you who spend your life with your eyes glued to your smart phones, whether you’re on the sidewalk or in a meeting with me. Trust me, you’re not that important, the email will wait. And I’m sitting right here, and I’m senior to you, and I’m trying to have a conversation with you, you jerk. Or jerkess.

    And finally, when and why did toilet paper commercials become so graphic? And gross? Ewwwww.


  11. JJ

    Brett – great rant!

    I figure the NFL is shooting itself in the foot just like MLB did years ago. Nobody learns.

    As for the AT&T thing, I did a column-length rant on that a while back. I live in the biggest city south of you, mid-city, and there were two places in my house where I could sometimes get a connection without being dropped. A Christmas Day conversation with my brother once involved 12 callbacks. The company told me it was because I lived in an area surrounded by 3 freeways and too many people were using their cell phones in their cars. When it became a choice between switching carriers or stroking out, I switched. Have been VERI happy ever since!

    Anyway, thanks for the chuckles today. You can rant anytime!

  12. Theresa

    The media – especially the broadcast media. Just report the freakin' news! I don't need you to interpret it for me or to editorialize it according to your point of view or for you to put on your Chicken Little hat to ratchet up my stress level and I'm sure you hope, your ratings. Unless of course the sky is truly falling in which case just let me know about it, I'll figure out how I feel about it and what if anything, I should do concerning the situation.
    NBC had an ad on a while back on which Brian Williams said " our job is to report the news and to help you make sense of it all." No Mr. Williams it is not. Just report the story, I'll do the rest.
    Thanks for the opportunity to rant! I feel better already 🙂

  13. Pauline

    Funny post Brett
    And that video is hilarious.
    My little pet peeve – I relieve the receptionist for her breaks for the main phone of the company. We frequently get calls from people who say "You called me?" I ask 3 questions to see which department I can send the call to. If the answer is no to my questions I politely tell them we have about 70 people here and I have no idea who called you. Damn call display.
    I totally agree with Rae regards to rude people and their phones.
    Some people get what they deserve, as you can see from this video.

    So you can't tell who she is but she has decided to sue because this was put on the net, now we know who she is!

  14. Wilfred Bereswill

    Come on Brett, a million dollars doesn't go as far as it used to. Have you priced the insurance on a Lamborghini or a Bentley?

    I actually heard a local (St. Louis guy) sports talk radio announcer, former NFLer, say that a million dollars does not go as far as it used to.

    I fly way too much to get upset over airline fees, but what took the cake happened just the other day. I'm scheduled to fly from St. Louis to Chicago at like 7:30 AM. The flight is oversold. Becasue traffic is light, I arrive at the airport and get to the gate area while the 7:05 AM flight to Chicago is boarding. I only have carryon and I ask if I can take the earlier flight. Of course, it's only a $50 fee. WTF! I only paid $79 for the original ticket! I explained that the flight I am is oversold. The gate agent checks and says, "Yes it is. Now do you want to pay the $50 or what?"

    I never yelled at an airline agent before. But this one pushed me too far. I guess a supervisor overheard the conversation and came over. Honest to God, it took 4 FRIGGIN' agents to figure out how to get me on a filght that left 1/2 hour earlier without a charge. Even though it made life easier for them on the next friggin' flight.

  15. Donna

    You have every right to rant, Brett! It's all common sense. Which apparently is missing with these people.

  16. Pop Culture Nerd

    I can't stand rubberneckers on the freeway who slow down and cause a backup on the 405 because there's a fender bender on the shoulder. MOVE ALONG! THEY'RE NOT THE DROIDS YOU'RE LOOKING FOR!

    It also bugs me when I'm being helped by someone at the bank/store/library and the phone rings and the person who's been helping me answers it and continues to help the caller for 15 minutes and just leaves me standing there at the counter. I got off my ass and actually came into the establishment and was there first. Shouldn't I get priority?

  17. lil Gluckstern

    I love it when you folks rant about stuff I think about. I live in a small town, 1 mile from a tower, and the phone simply doesn't work-once in a while. I loved the video, since I am viewing this on St. Patrick's Day. I hope you're working just fine, having gotten all that off your chest. You fans need you to do that.

  18. Catherine

    In the I wonder rant mode…

    I wonder why so many people ignore their children in cafes? When I say ignore I mean do.not.blink and continue a conversation while their child holds a room hostage with wailing demands and often distress.

    Once upon a time I remember when a wailing child in public (yes to the best of my knowledge every parent has one at some stage, for some reason) evoked a fairly quick response to an outside chat about inside voices…or at the very least tried to sooth their child…somehow.

    I must mention that no I don't wish for a children to be seen and not heard scenario, just not heard at full throttle without an intervention.

    Other than that I'm fairly rant free.

  19. KDJames

    Excellent rant, Brett. And very cathartic. Just melted away all my rage. Yes, I am totally lying but you don't want me to start.

    Hope you get into a more restful schedule soon. That kind of stress will kill you. I know you know this. Take care.

  20. Anon

    Pauline, that woman is suing because employees of the private security firm for that mall released those images to the internet. And when she complained, they said they would 'check into it'. No one was reprimanded, no one was reminded that privacy in this case was violated.

    These were security shots from multiple cameras and spliced together with security playing it back to laugh at with their friends. (I've seen other versions than the one you linked to) Personally, I don't want to consider every time I walk into a mall whether or not I'll do something stupid for the enjoyment of millions to chortle over. Fine, I accept there are people watching, but I like to believe that when I try on a bra or trip up the stairs because I was window shopping, that isn't the next internet sensation. And if this isn't challenged and people made to see that it's wrong, then we're all fair game and everything you do is up for grabs. Anyone will be able to release it and say what they like about it. Afterall, no one knows it was you.

  21. Jonathan Quist

    I'm trying to get my mind around the concept of the NFL lockout.

    The Super Bowl, the last event of the 2010 NFL season, was on February 6th.

    The NFL Draft is scheduled for April 28th through 30th.

    Team "mini camps" (perhaps what we used to call "spring training"?) are in June.

    Regular season training camps begin in late July.

    So just exactly _what_ are the players locked out of?

    I think I remember why it is that I watched only college football for 20 of the last 25 years.

    Speaking of which – surely, I am not the only one who fondly remembers watching college football on television and enjoying the full halftime show. I don't mean the network illuminati commenting on every game that I didn't choose to watch – I mean the pageantry of college sports, the bands, the pom squads, even the baton twirlers. Are we so removed from enjoyment of the sport and everything put in to it by non-athlete supporters that we are reduced to an appreciation of statistical analysis only? What happened to the sun shining through the crisp autumn air? The whiff of overboiled hot dogs mixed with taffy apples? Or even the bitter sting of late-season rain on the sidelines? Honestly, when I tune in the Big Ten game of the week, I couldn't give a flip about the results in the Pac Ten, the Big Eight or the Little Bighorn. I can hear those tantalizing strains of Rise Northwestern or the Minnesota Rouser in the background. For the sake of all that is good and holy, let us see the band playing it. Let us see the students and loyal alums singing along in the stands. At least during the bowl games, if not the regular season.

    To the sports networks, Dr. Evil said it best: "Through me a frikking bone here!"

  22. MaryQuiteContrary

    Well said, Brett! I enjoyed your rant and hope you felt better for having written it. Please forgive me for sharing mine on the same subjects. Before I jump off this cliff, have you tried ambien? Of course, don't take ambien unless you have 7-8 hours to sleep (who does?) and don't operate heavy machinery, like an ipad, until you know how the medication will affect you. Nutty things can happen. I once took an ambien and woke to find the house clean and laundrey done. Of course, I also found a gallon of paint spilled on my closet floor. The ambien elves are nutty little devils.


    Which is worse?
    1) a BIG bunch of bitchy millionaire players
    2) a smaller bunch of bitchy billionaire owners

    It's a toss-up, but shame on you both for your manipulative scare tactics. You want your loyal, ticket buying, gear purchasing, $10 beer swilling, fans to get upset and apply public pressure so the other side to cave to your demands? Feck you both. Every Sunday afternoon from January to September I enjoy a long, delightful afternoon with a good book. I can wait. So belly up, boys, to the greed buffet. It's all you can eat, or should I write, all you can stomach? Throw away your money and my respect. I'll be disappointed but I'll survive. I am a 50 year Philadelphia Eagle fan…you can't dish out more disappointment than I can handle. Try me. I dare you.


    Flying with my husband from Ft Lauderdale to Atlanta today, I paid $78 for the privilege of checking 3 bags. I stowed my backpack in the overhead and settled into my seat. I made a decision to check bags so I could have a bit of space and footroom. God knows I don't have enough butt or hip room in those tiny seats. Footroom is a small luxury I'm willing to pay to enjoy. It's vacation…go nuts. Enter perky flight attendant shouting "who's backpack is this?" I identified myself as the owner. Ms Perkus asked, in a smarmy condescending tone, would I PLEASE put my backpack under my seat so we (I guess we're in this together now) could accommodate more rollerbags in the overhead luggage compartment ? Seriously?

    I smiled sweetly and said, "no thank you, dear." As much as I wanted to rage and swear and slap that silly look off her overly made-up face, I didn't. No amount of discussion, shouting, cheap elbow-shots-to-the-stomach, or even a logical, reasoned argument would frustrate her as much as a simple "no thank you". I kept smiling and repeating it, as if she was offering a plate of warm cookies and icy cold milk that I couldn't possibly accept. Finally, she took me for stupid, drunk, or deaf and gave up. She stomped down the aisle, really stomped her tiny little feet. It made a noise and everything.

    Speaking of nuts, the airline was going to serve us a delicious pack of 8 salty nuts for a yummy snack. But sadly, no nuts. They claimed someone on board had an allergy, but really, I think forgot the nuts. Or maybe the nuts were in the overhead luggage compartment next to a huge wheelie bag and the NFL owners and players nuts?

    Time for an ambien.

  23. pandora beads</

    <a href="">pandora beads</a>
    <a href="">pandora Bracelets</a>
    <a href="">pandora Bracelets</a>
    <a href="">swarovski beads</a>
    <a href="">Pandora Bracelets</a>
    <a href="">Pandora Bracelets</a>
    <a href="">Swarovski crystal beads</a>
    <a href="">Pandora Charms</a>
    <a href="">Swarovski crystal beads</a>
    <a href="">Pandora Bracelets</a>
    <a href="">thomas sabo store</a>
    <a href="">Thomas Sabo Watch</a>
    <a href="">Thomas Sabo Chain</a>
    <a href="">Thomas Sabo on sale</a>

Comments are closed.