Sunday, June 28, 2009


Back in 2003, I was rather an angry fellow. My personal life had unceremoniously cratered, I was deeply frustrated about the cul-de-sac my creative efforts had wound up in, and I probably had a couple of really painful zits on my back that kept rubbing up against my shirt. It was in that state that, in a fit of concentrated pique, I started (and briefly maintained) a blog whose sole purpose and function was to mock and irritate a rather pompous individual who frequented one of the message boards I regularly visited. I don't look upon the effort with any particular pride - not that the guy didn't deserve a little tweaking, but I'm a little shocked at how vicious the whole thing reads today - but I will say that my contempt for the fellow did result in a rather amusing burst of creativity. See, in the first entry on said blog (wherein the "author" pretentiously detailed his myriad "achievements"), I linked the phrase "my award-winning book" to a two-page site I hashed together in about half an hour, utilizing some rudimentary Dreamweaver skills, and posted online via GeoCities. The only reason I'm posting its content here is that, with the imminent death of Yahoo!'s free-website-hosting project, it'll soon be gone and I don't want to deprive myself or my fans (for which, read also "myself") of the few chuckles I was able to whip up in the twenty minutes or so it took me to come up with it (and, unlike the blog - which you'll notice I'm not linking to - it's not more mean than funny). Plus, it's content, and that fools me yet again into thinking that I'm keeping this blog a vibrant and ongoing proposition and that I'm not leagues more pathetic than anybody I've ever sneered at. (And I realize now that the Ventures did record a few songs with vocals, so that kind of ruins one of the jokes below, but fuggit.)

"Randomly Handing Out Statuettes Since 1997."

page 1:

Winners of the Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award for Basic Competency in the Field of Music and/or Media Journalism, Book Division

572. Farley Juxt, Jr., The Gene Rayburn Story, Part 3: Young, Gifted and _______

573. Paul Dvorak, Jim Nabors - He's Dead, Right?

574. Nick Harcourt, New Mexico is Now! - The Taos Free Jazz Scene

575. Dicks Mole, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah, Etc.: An Inquiry into Values As Seen Through the Ears of a Modern American Genius "Rock Critic" Reflecting on His Times As Only He Can

576. Bat Narwhal, ed., How to Tackle the TV Guide Crossword Puzzle in Under Six Days!

577. Damon Errantstain, Heterosexuals in Hollywood: I Found One!

588. Pete Maws, Sherman, Goldsboro, Gentry: The Great Bobbies of Early 70s Rock

589. Georgio Pillock, The Ventures: The Annotated Lyrics

590. Moloch O'Herlihy, The Complete Guide to Pro-Life Death Metal

591. Gabriel Melgar, Jr., I'm With the Parking Attendant: True Stories of Clueless Groupiedom

592. Anne Hedonya, Helvetica: Font of the Damned

593. Jojo Krumbumb, Here's Your Friggin' Book, Mr. Publisher. Happy Now?

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award?

The Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award was established in 1995 by Maxwell H. Zendorkingham, a philanthropist and Swiss cheese plugger in order to pay tribute to the hard-working men and women around the world who harvest parsley to garnish the dishes of restaurant patrons worldwide. Unfortunately, due to a clerical error (carried out by a clumsy priest who dabbled in inventory management), the expected shipment of 30 award statuettes accidentally turned out to be 30,000. Happily, owing to his generosity of spirit and The Award Hut's iron-clad "No Returns" policy, Zendorkingham decided to expand the award to honor notables in many different walks of life.

Such as?

Excellence in Millipede Neutering, Aptitude in Skipping Yet Somehow Not Coming Off Gay, Best Individuals Named Doug Shaftesbury in or Around Fort Wayne, Indiana, Most Cheerful Rental Car Agent, Basic Competency in the Field of Music and/or Media Journalism (Book Division), Least Whiny Female Yodeler, Individual Most Inured to Being "The Ugly One" in a Boy Band, Outstanding Achievement in Gyno-Ventriloquism, and Basic Competency in the Field of Music and/or Media Journalism (Handbill/Post-It Note Division).

How does one qualify for a Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award?

Through a lengthy and torturous nomination/ratification process, including the testimony of at least five non-relatives as to your skill in the relevant category, your non-Jewishness, and your ability to uphold the level of excellence and the attendant responsibilities of your specific craft for four to six years after receiving the award. Or you can send $3.95 and two Proofs of Purchase from a box of Wheat Chex to Free Awards Thing, PO Box 5868, Skirmish Lake, MI (zip code withheld by request).

Are you standing on my foot?

Oh, is that your foot? Terribly sorry. Here, have a Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award.

Why does the Maxwell H. Zendorkingham Award look exactly the same as the Peter N. Khakky Award for Ability to Make Exact Change From a Fifty?

It's not. Tommy soldered on a rosette or something. It's there. Unless it fell off.

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