Stuff I Wrote
These are a few things I've written when I was feeling creative. Hope you enjoy them. The items followed by red bullseyes are skits I wrote for my college sketch comedy and improv group, Off Center. Anything followed by a music note is meant to be put to music.
Code as if the person who ends up maintaining your code will be a violent psychopath who knows where you live, especially if that future maintainer is you.
Shakespeare's famous tragedy in the style of "Eleanor Rigby" by the Beatles.
This is the story of how I first got started programming and some of the milestones that lead me where I am today. It may be a bit too self-indulgent and dripping with nostalgia, but after listening to a bunch of other programmers share their stories, I wanted to get as many of the details written down now, while they're still somewhat fresh. Some of the earlier details are already pretty fuzzy.
Advances in tabroom technology have allowed speech and debate tournaments to switch to online ballots. Knowing that, you may be wondering what it is the tournament staff does at tournaments in this brave new world. Allow me to tell you in the style of ABBA / Mamma Mia.
Now, I'll be the first to admit that even my keen prop-master eyes did not notice the now-infamous coffee cup in halls of Winterfell last night. That said, those at the intersection of Game of Thrones and Musical Theater fans may appreciate this little ditty by way of Kander and Ebb
In the style of Bryan Adams, with a slightly more positive ending.
How to interrogate a suspect using the modified Reid technique.
In the style of "This is Halloween" from the Nightmare Before Christmas in honor of the speech tournament we have each year around Halloween time.
This was inspired by an episode of one of my favorite podcasts (Join The Party) after they did a D&D session set in an opera in which a manticore featured prominently. This is a silly tribute to the tune of “La donna è mobile”.
In response to the prompt, *If you added or replaced the word 'dragon' in the title of a story, what would the resulting plot and title become?*, one of the commenters suggested My Fair Dragon, "pompous professor Henry Higgins attempts to transform a dragon into someone who can pass for a cultured member of high society." Well, I read that and my mind went here...
At the suggestion of his coach, I wrote these alternate lyrics to The Kingston Trio’s “Charlie on the MTA” to celebrate her student's (i.e. Charlie) second time in finals of student congress at the 2018 National Speech and Debate Association (NSDA) National Tournament held in Ft. Lauderdale, FL.
When your characters become genre-savvy.
Larry Page encounters Mark Zuckerberg after his senate testimony (in the style of the old Vaudeville act, Gallagher and Shean).
How to Tail a Suspect without Being Seen
To the tune of the Arbiter's song from Chess.
Inspired by my favorite broadway musical of 2016-2017 and a Facebook post from my playwright friend, Duncan Pflaster.
How to Take Fingerprints
How to Read the Last Message Written on a Memo Pad
How I transformed all the merfolk into strikingly beautiful, but also incredibly dangerous eel-creatures using a centuries-old spell
The other night, I dreamed that I was bicycling from New Jersey to Nevada.
With apologies to Messrs. Gilbert and Sullivan
A short forensics-themed Christmas carol to the tune of the Johnny Mathis version of "We Need a Little Christmas" in honor of the annual Holly Speech Festival in Natick, MA.
This is a short story / monologue I wrote loosely inspired by the recent five-year plan my alma mater has embarked on.
On November 21-23, 2014, St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, PA held the 35th Annual Villiger Invitational Forensics (speech and debate) tournament. Now, 'thirty-fifth' sounds a lot like 'twenty-fifth' so...
A short, wistful love story. I'm not sure where this writing voice came from. I hope to be able to revisit it some day.
A tribute to the unexpected creativity you find at an engineering school in the style of The Beatles "Penny Lane".
Sometimes all you need is a title to get started. We were in a brainstorming meeting for our sketch comedy group, and someone wrote this phrase on the whiteboard just before leaving for another club meeting. I knew right away I had to write it. This is meant to have the feel of a liturgical chant. Be warned, as you might guess from the title, it gets somewhat depressing.
I know that pre-historic man probably didn't write in English, but who knows?
An important lesson about programming in C.
Criminals need to buy their ski masks from somewhere...
In college, I met someone with a stolen NYC subway map on his apartment wall. I started thinking, what sort of person steals a map?
An advertisement for a charity with the best interests of college students in mind. Imagine Sarah McLachlan's music playing in the background while you read this.
Just a quick limerick.
When your piano teacher lets you borrow his yellow umbrella one day when it suddently starts raining after your lesson and your brain is in creative mode after making music for an hour, something like this might happen.
Title says it all. A very important fact about Greek history.
In the Summer of 2009, near the beginning of the Twilight movie craze, I read an article predicting that Zombies would most likely be the next traditional horror monster to be romanticized. Naturally, I wanted to be ahead of the trend.
I cannot tell a lie - the idea for this skit came from three randomly selected cards from an improv card game.
Inspired by true events and Arthurian legend - that is to say one year I had a bad habit of accidentally locking myself out of my dorm room. Also my dorm at the time, Castle Point Appartments (CPA), had its entrance on the third floor with a bridge connecting it to the street.
Do you ever see someone and think that you know them...but you're not quite sure?
If you've seen one, you've seem 'em all.
I wrote this skit for Leslie Nielsen (not that I ever met him or gave it to him...I just had him in mind when I wrote it).
This is the version of my senior year Originl Oratory speech as performed at the 2006 National Forensics League national tournament in Dallas, TX.
A short story I wrote in high school one night when I couldn't sleep.
This is the version of my junior year Originl Oratory speech mostly as performed at the 2005 National Forensics League national tournament in Philadelphia, PA. It ended up being a bit too long for the 10 minute time limit so there were some late cuts and edits that never made their way into softcopy.