April 6, 2009

The New Yorker Cartoon Anti-Caption Contest #188


Posted by Daniel Radosh


"You've been a great crowd. Last night, I felt like was being stared at by a group of dead fish."

"You've been a great crowd. Last night, I felt like I was being stared at by a group of dead fish."

"I apologize if the acoustics seem a little off tonight. It was Bring Your Fish to Work day, and I didn't want to disappoint them."

"We're offering free refills until 10 o'clock. But please don't take any of my fish."

"If it's OK with you, I won't get into the whole waterboarding/torture debate. I'm just here to play my piano and antagonize some fish."

"Fish gotta swim, and birds..PSST..birds gotta...PSST! Sam - release the damn birds already!"

...thanks so much, yes you know, you can tune a piano, but you can't tuna piano full of fish, thank you! Thank you! I'm here all night....

"Thanks again for joining me in the Salvador Dali Room. Fly home safely, and don't forget to tip your manatee."

"This one goes out to John Cage, without whom this evening of fish-piano may have never been conceived...."

"This fish blanket works best to mute the Steinway. Of course, a piano would never actually hold water, let alone water and fish, ha ha! How absurd. Now for some Cole Porter, and don't forget to tip your waitress!"

“...but never more welcome than I feel here in Fargo.”

"And now, because they only have a three-second memory span, I will yet again re-start my Musical Salute to Goldfish. 'Somewhere beyond the sea, my love lies waiting for me, my love stands waiting on golden sands--' And now, because they only have a three second memory span, I will yet again re-start my Musical Salute to Goldfish."

"And now, I hope you don't mind, but I'm just going to run some scales. Get it? Scales? Because of the fish in my piano. Fuck you. Fuck you all. You don't deserve me."

"Thank you, thank you...so many Nemo fans here tonight! Now a sure favorite...Feel free to sing along...'I'm a little fishy, watch me swim Here is my tail, here is my fin, When I want to have fun with my friends, I wiggle my tail an dive right in!'....thank you! No, really, thanks! Any Mermaid fans here tonight...?"

(Forgot to put my name on three-second memory span entry above. Also, forgot to put my name on three-second memory span entry above.)

"Welcome and thank you for coming to the piano bar sushi bar combo. Not that I'm playing in a combo - I'm playing solo. I know, you wish I'd play so low you couldn't hear me. Please tell me that's not true - I'm fishing for a compliment. I'm not being koi. Well things are going swimmingly, so, water you waiting for, give me a request. I'll play anything in the key of sea."

Is it just me, or does it small like pussy in here?

"...so I said, I won't tinkle in your pool if you don't put a pool where I tinkle the ivories. But seriously..."

It's a message. It means Luca Brasi jams with the fishes.

"Sorry about any misunderstanding, but this is not a Phish concert.....and if you don’t like it, go phuck yourselves.”

"You are all exceptionally ugly, so I will assume your expectations are low."

"I'm haunted by the ghosts of a previous caption contest."

"I see we have some adults with thalidomide deformities in the audience tonight. You don't see that much anymore. Which reminds of a seldom-played number by the late Duke Ellington. Hope you enjoy it..."

It was a gift from Liberace. That, and the gonorrhea.

"Thank you folks, that's all for this evening. Now if you don't mind, I'm just going to sit here a while longer and see if this priapism sorts itself out."

"Alright now, who entered the Sphere?"

"Thank you all for coming tonight! If anyone enjoyed the performance, just toss a few Swedish fish into the back of my piano, and don't forget the waitstaff."

"Ladies and gentlemen, I studied four years in Vienna, three years in Paris, and seven years in vain." -- rimshot

"...and now, Oh, What a Beautiful Spawning!"

"This is taking things to far. I know this is a Democrat party, but does that mean we have to hold our cups only in our left hand?"

"Shit this coffee sucks! Why does fish tank douche get to have a Martini? This is a fucking AA meeting! I hope that tank is full of vodka! Here fishy, fishy. Here fishy, fishy!

"Shit this coffee sucks! Why does fish tank douche get to have a Martini? This is a fucking AA meeting! I hope that tank is full of vodka! Here fishy, fishy. Here fishy, fishy"

"I want to dedicate this next number to my wonderful investment advisor, J. Ezra Merkin, because...well, he knows why."

if anyone else wants a martini, help yourself to this vodka and a fish-shaped olive.

the Navy was sued to stop using SONAR that might disrupt oceanic habitat and migration patterns so they paid me $50 to try this.

my science fair project was to see whether fish could live in a pool of seminal fluid, and, if not, whether they could be revived by Beethoven's 5th. i would advise those of you in the front row to use the plastic shields provided.

"And I want to dedicate this next song to the victims of Hurricane Katrina - thanks for the great fucking piano!"

Despite his grotesquely elongated right shoulder and emaciated right arm, Dick was still able to play a piano filled with fish.

"I'm not sure how to find the volume, really. You can approximate it by a trapezoidal prism, I suppose. But that's a really good question."

"Ladies and gentlemen, I want to be serious for a moment. More than 850 people perished when the Estonia sank in 1994. This piano was raised from the wreck today, and I'd like to play a little tribute to the victims for you on it. Ehem...You lost your life on Estonia, in the darkness of night, Estonia, yeah you're drownin', that's right, Estonia, say adios to your life, Estonia, Estonia. Now the audience! Bom bom bee dam bom bom bee dam dam..."

"Man, this piano sounds really wrong somehow. Is it me? It's not really making any piano sounds. Kinda wish I weren't blind... though it does help me play excellent jazz."

"Yeah, my nose may take up half my face, but at least it's flat!"

"It's been a bad year for us here at Consolidated Giant Oven Mitt & Aquarium, a bad year indeed. In retrospect I suppose it was not the right time to get out of microphones and into aquariums, what with the downturn and all. But I blame you, the shareholders and board members for replacing my grandfather, of blessed memory, with me, a man who can't even be arsed to wear a tie to a business meeting. Also, notice the martini? Yep, I'm loaded."

"It's the dawning of the age of aquariums--AQUARIUMS!!"

"Bomb bomb bomb, bomb Iran."

"Hey hey hey, everybodayyy! It's time for Galactose, the world's most single-minded prop comic! As you've guessed, I'm Galactose, and this is the prop! Heh! Get it? It's a piano, only with fish in it! HAH!"

"Thank you for inviting me to the Musicians Against Cancer Gala this evening. I notice that my martini tip glass is empty, and that you hated my music enough to empty the fish tank into the piano. Well, it smells like Farrah Fawcett's coffin will in two weeks. Goodnight."

"Hi folks. I'm Glenn Gould-Fish, and I prefer to play with my organ."

"My next song is a sing along... I'm sure you all know it. In the key of A..."

[Plink plink plink..]

[Singing] "Does anyone know why my fish died?"

[Audience, singing in unison] "Ich-thy-ophth-ir-ius multi-filis!"

[Pianist, singing] "Yes my fish died of ick."

How the hell did we end up in tis piano?

"This is a song about the time when we packed a bunch of dead fish into a suitcase."

"Ladies and gentlemen... my piano is full of fish."

"These fish hold a lesson for us all: It's possible to lead full, productive lives even if, like us, you have no legs."

"Could three or four of my fellow tiny-handed people come join me on the bench so I can play a fucking chord?"

"...and the streets will flow with the blood of the nonbelievers"

"Come on over! The caviar tonight is FRESH!

"do you really want to hurt me? do you really want to make me cry? (wah wah wah wah)

Thank you. This is all part of my conditional parole for handcuffing a Norwegian escort during a naked photo shoot.
Ladies, i don't accept panties as tips thank you but I do accept accessories. Papa's got a brand new bag and it has a 10 year old boy in it"

Thanks to our wonderful house manager Wanda for the roses on my piano. Though to be honest I'd prefer tulips on my organ. {tap tap} Is this thing on? Tough crowd . . .

"For my next number I'd like to perform my tribute to The Dead and Phish. Thank you."

"I'm not saying I believe in global warming, but two minutes ago this was a freakin' fishsicle!"

"What's not to get? It's a piano. Full of dead fish. Eh? . . . People, it's *performance art*, fer cryin' out loud. Oh, this is the LAST time I take a gig in Westchester."

"If you can toss an olive into my martini glass, you win a fish. Isn't this fun?"

...and I'm hungry like the wolf fish!"

This is how I handle water music.

And now, "Rhapsody in Bluefin" by George Gershwim.

"Yes, these are real fish, unlike you, ahem, "ladies.""

Yes, I have no legs and my piano is filled with seawater and fish. I guess that makes me a para-pelagic.

"All my fish represent people I've known who have died. Do they have names? Yes: `Didn't Clap', 'Yawned Loudly', 'Bad Request', 'Screamed You Suck', 'Funny Looks', 'On Cell Phone', 'Came Late', `Talked Throughout', `Feet On Stage', 'Lousy Tip', 'Wrong Drink', 'Laser Pointer', and `Mom'. Is that all, Stupid Question?"

"Seeing as this is a fundraiser for the Monterey Bay Aquarium, our host would like to remind everyone not to pour your drinks into any fish-containing tanks, including the novelty grand piano here and the main tank behind you. There have been numerous reports of fish, whale, and baby otter deaths in the last hour."

Once again, any requests OTHER THAN me closing the cover on my piano?

No, they're not dead, they just want to get as far away from from my Elton John renditions as possible.

"Poignant isn't it? The alewives try and try but will never dive under the surface of the lime Jello. Mwahahahaha."

"My playing is shitty. The fish are coprophagous."

"... and all because of the carp! That got awa-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-a-y ..."

"So, then, I guess the Johnsons are feeding my ego."

And now, a song about a spicy edible root vegetable, a girl named Dorothy, and a way to catch fish. I hope you like it, it's called "Radish, Dot, Net"

"Ha ha! We're all so decadent!"

Down in the meadow in a little bitty pool
Swam three little fishies and a mama fishie too
"Swim" said the mama fishie, "Swim if you can"
And they swam and they swam all over the dam
Boop boop dit-tem dat-tem what-tem Chu!
Boop boop dit-tem dat-tem what-tem Chu!
Boop boop dit-tem dat-tem what-tem Chu!
And they swam and they swam all over the dam...

And for my next number "if you're happy and you know it clap you hands!" Clap Clap!

'Hey is that Dexter Gordon in the house? Wow, he's been dead like twenty years. I have to say he looks pretty good. A lot better than you stiffs."

"I did it for you Randy!"

"Ladies and Germs, I want to thank you, the local hatcheries, Seagrams, Richard Rodgers and the Thalidomide Foundation for making this night preventable. Ha ha. Just kidding. No, actually I'm serious. Now take your complimentary carp and get out. That is if you can reach that far."

"Who said 'something's fishy here?' Come on, whose the chickenshit wise guy? I backed Sinatra,the fucking Chairman of the Board! I played for Hoagy Carmicheal when I was five and made him fucking cry! I don't need you fucking cripples. You people don't know shit. Get the fuck out with that fish shit."

And then, tragically, Sam decided to play the catch of the day.

"And remember folks, be sure to try the grouper and tip your waiter."

"Why did I decide to become a pianist? Just for the halibut! No, I'm kidding, I was brutally raped by Elton John."

And now for all you visiting Irish fishermen...Tour, A lure, A lure, A...

My wife told me I had to give up fishing in order to have more time to play shows. Ha, what now bitch?!

I hate when April fools day lingers...

"Fish love everything I play - except Bach, for some reason. If I play Bach, they jump out of the piano and bite my crotch. So, no Bach. Requests? `Whiter Shade of Pale'? Sure! `We skipped the light fandangOOOOWWWWWW!...'"

"I brought a couple of minnows- do you mind?"

"Thank you, that was a light little Arabisque. And next, the Cioppino in A flat-bottomed bowl. Enjoy."

"Who requested Schubert's Trout quintet?"

"This concert has been brought to you by AIG. Please pass your glasses forward and give me a little bailout."

"Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. And special thanks to the people over at Steinway who sent over this wonderful instrument and the services of their best piano tuna."

Hanh? Well fuck you! And you at the next table--fuck you where you breathe! Hello, you four in the back booth sharing the Mouton Cadet: FUCK YOU you FUCKING FUCKS! And the lovely ladies in front, FUCK YOUR MOTHERS! Anyone failing to find humor in this, Ffff-[etc.]

"The Poles say that for a fish to be served properly, it must swim three times: in water, wine and butter! Hence, the butter-filled Bosendorfer--fondue forks and a Manilow medley for all you lovers out there."

"They're Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers, size XXL, but they did die in pain."

I assure you, ladies and gentlemen, our finny friends are just here for Good Friday. Next week it's the Tiny Floating Gorillas!"

"Slain by my rage they float in my bile and now? Now I commit the sin of Onan, in 2/4 time!"

"Not water, sir: Nacho Cheese Sauce. And my drink is Velveeta with a twist of lime and my underpants are lined with cold slices of Colby and Munster. Wheeee!"

Blonde Lady in front row:

"Do you know there are a bunch of putrid dead fish floating in piss warm greywater in your piano?"

Piano Player:

"Know it? I wrote it!"

Don't be koi with me...

My fans await with baited breath.

Something smelt?

Carpe die'em.

Live. Without a net.

You must remember this. A fish is just a fish...

Filet it again Sam!

Somewhere-beyond the sea...

The bass line is weak.

Hooked on you...

"Usually a woman sings on my piano. Tonight it just smells like it."

"I hope you're enjoying your milk. Please, take more from the piano if you'd like. And check the underbelly of the fish you pick up to see if you've won a small, medium or large prize."

"Eyes on me or you get what the fish got. Death."

"You know, Concert Night's really the only time of the month I can actually forget we're patients in an insane asylum."

"Now John at the bar is a friend of mine
He gets me my drugs for free
And he's quick with a song or to light up your bong
But there's some face that he'd rather be ejaculating all over."

"Thank you! I'll be here all week! The fish were here all last week."

"Everyone, I don't want to alarm you, but the gin in this piano seems to have killed all these fish, and it may be killing all of us as well."

"Now I suppose you folks think these fish are dead, right? Nothing could bring them back to life, right? OK, just watch what happens when I play an A flat seventh! ... er,,, I mean an A half-diminished seventh!... uh... an A minor added sixth? ... Oh shit I brought the wrong piano!!!"

And now, for all you German flycasters out there, a little fishing lieder.

"I'm on a seafood diet. When I see food, I have to eat it! Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!"

And now, by request, for the 37th night in a row, the theme from "Jaws".

Don't go changing (changing the water)
to try and please me (no, not me)
You never let me down before (you were all wet)
Don't imagine (no, I don't)
you're too familiar (no, you're a bottom feeder)
And I don't see you anymore (the water's so, so cloudy)
I wouldn't leave you (no, baby)
in times of trouble (trouble is my middle name)
We never could have come this far (no, my love)
I took the good times (as wet as they are)
I'll take the bad times (even wetter)
I'll take you just the way you are (I know you're in there somewhere, babe...)

"That's right, ladies and gents. Here at the Ebbets Club in Flushing's beautiful gem, Citi Field, nothing...NOTHING...is beyond your wildest wishes! NOTHING!!"

"Just a reminder, folks. Show the hostess your U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service I.D., and all drinks are half-priced."

I will NOT close my piano, ma'am. Why don't YOU close your legs, skeevy bitch.

"So long, and thanks for all the fish."

"Hey, folks, hows about this tidbit: When they're dead, piranhas aren't nearly as dangerous."

"Call me Ishmael."

“My elocution lessons were going nowhere, so the conservatory suggested electrocution.”

"The arias around here are piscine."

LOST CHAPTERS OF THE BIBLE, THE VEGAS YEARS: "...and now ladies and gentlemen, with your kind permission our headliner--the Messiah--is going to feed everyone in the audience with just these few fish...The two-drink minimum remains in effect, of course."

"Well of course it sounds muffled; the piano wires are covered with water and dead fish."

"It was so easy; it was like shooting fish in a baby grand."

Having failed at all other musical instruments, John finally found success playing the sea piano.

"Yes, you're right; there's no keyboard. I'm just playing with myself behind this piano-shaped aquarium."

"For my next number, I'd like to drown ten fish and drink a martini straight up."

"And now I play you one of my own compositions, by Victor Herbert."

Now a little something in the key of "sea."

These fish are the peeingest.

I graduated from the Quasimodo School of Music, I play my organ and my face rings a bell.

I've been feeling crappie.

Some Neanderthal kicked these fish to death in a previous contest. This is their song-"Someone left a hake out in the rain..."

"Does anyone here happen to have a can of FDS?"

"I'm haunted by the faces of my victims. So why I take them with me, I really don't know."

I’ve trained them to tune my piano. I call them my tune-a-fish. It boosts their smelly little egos.

"My secret? It's a virgin martini."

"I don't mind telling you folks that it was a long hard battle to overcome my fear of thirteen fish, but I am finally free of my dreaded Triskaidekafishyphobia."

Christ, what a fish hole.

Hey, last night it was filled with floating used condoms.

And now a medley of "Roxanne" and "Hit the Road, Jack" dedicated to Steve Irwin. I like to call it my "Sting Ray" set.

I'm emotionally unstable.

"The Hörügel here is piscean."

"...so my boss says, 'Hey, piano guy... Play the whole set and don't try anything fishy!"

"I guess it's not a good idea to actually 'tinkle' a tune on the piano!"

"Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale... a tale of a fateful trip!"

"As you know, I play only for tips. Give what you can. But at the current time, I am unable to accept any more fish."

"Radosh asked me to help him judge last week's contest. So everyone pick a fish. The one that stinks the least is the winner."

"I'd like to dedicate this to those around the piano: Don't stand so- Don't stand so- Don't stand so close t- BACK THE FUCK UP!"

Alright. Before I start, let me repeat that you cannot come to the 'Identical Twin reunion night' without having an identical twin. Yes, I'm talking to you, Charly. How many times do I have to tell?

I'd like to dedicate this song to the acidification of the oceans. Enjoy your caviar, by the way; we're the last generation who'll get to experience what it tastes like.

I never drink water--fish fuck in it. I do, however, enjoy watching them.

"Here's hoping you folks have a Holy Thursday, a Good Friday, a Sabbatum Sanctum, and a Happy Easter."

Welcome to 80's Night. And now, a medley from The Gars - Good Times Troll, My Best Friend's Pearl, and Just What I Netted.

"Buddy, for the last time, I'm NOT covering up the piano strings so that you can't see me playing. It's just a mural with fish. Whatdoyathink, I've got a Casio where the keys should be, or something? Just shut up and enjoy Debussy's `Clair de Lune' with a Calypso-synth beat like everyone else here!"

"Thank you all for coming to see me play with my chub."

Gefilte? I don't even ge-know ya. Thanks and have a Happy Passover everyone!

You know the old saying, "give a man a fish, and he'll eat for a day; put a bunch of fish in his piano, and he'll no longer have to order room service"?

Or even better,

You know the old saying "give a man a fish, and he'll eat for a day; put a bunch of fish in his piano, and he'll eat for the rest of his North American tour?"

Here's a tip, folks- don't piss off Rahm Emanuel!

"Er... hello everyone! Where did you all come from then? Listen, I assure you all that my absence of trousers has absoultely nothing to do with the welfare of these fish. Now everyone sing-a-long; 'I've got you/ under my skin...'

"I agree, the smell of rotting dead fish is overpowering. Lah-lah-lah."

"Well, the aquarium's been trashed, the fish are dead and the piano is ruined. I got it. You don't like Barry Manilow."

"I am somewhat concerned that after I am dead my wife and stepchildren will find out that I am a biological female."

"Hey-it's not my fault you came here on a Friday."

"The management's asked me to mention that there is absolutely no truth to the rumor that they water down the drinks here."

"Would you say that to Tom Petty? I thought I told you not to bring up any of that actor s***. This is my passion, man. Now back to my 1959 subscription to Famous Monsters of Filmland."

Now Jimmy plays with the fishies.

"And the piano, it sounds like a carnival! And the microphone smells like a beer! And they sit at the bar and put fish in my piano, despite my constant and overwrought reworking of songs to emphasize the damage it does to my piano! Oh la la la di da da..."

[Anonymous' reference to Billy Bob Thornton (i.e.,"Would you say that to Tom Petty?...") is...how you say?...priceless. IMHO]

"It's a good thing there was no bass here to 'tease' that."

"Tonight you dine to 'quill'."

"Huh ! That chord there was piscine."

"Freakin' drunks, man ! ...Hey, low C 'dish' ! Low C 'dish', asshole !"

"....Jane Mansfield, Ernie Kovacs, Margaret Mitch... hey, I'm not driving home, jackass....Nick Adenhart !"

" 'Yawannamissea' -- by 'Flipper' Bass !"

"I am haunted by the fishes on my plectrums."

"I did not insert my fish in that piano. Monica Lewinsky."

"This one's called 'One Fish, Two Fish, Dead Fish, Blue Fish.'"

"That was 'La Mer.' By Deb, you see."

"This was the only music school I could afford."

"And now a piece by Bait-toven."

"And now, for those like really old-timey dancing, I'm going to play a minnow-wet."

"Just wait 'til I pull the plug -- then you'll hear some Rushin' music."

"OK- now your partner's turn to bob for fishies!"

"Forgive me folks- guy at the pet store said these fish were big drinkers."

"Your tips are generous, fully appreciated and tasty."

"The 'Yawannawatsea ?' ... by Pflipper Bass." (Improved version)

"And now for 'Rock Lobster,' followed by 'Octopus's Garden,' Schubert's 'Trout' Quintet, 'Guppy Love,' a medley from 'Porgy and Bass,' and 'Sole Man' by Salmon Dave, capped off with a salute to Thelonius Monkfish--all in the Key of Sea, naturally. But first, can anyone tell me the difference between tuna fish and a piano?"

"So the boss says that I deserved an Oscar for my performance. Ever tried to feed an Oscar?"

Sand bar?! Piano bar?! Fish don't freakin' know the difference!

"I also play the lobster organ."

"I'm not really a pianist, I'm actually a performance artist."

"Sam, you drowned one for her. You can drown one for me."

"And then, as I left to go to my dressing room, I said to this fag:'You don't know the difference between tuning a Concert Grand and tuna fish!"

"Beat it buddy. We're out of caulk."

"Thank you for coming to Resolutions! You've been a great audience. I'm just gonna keep playing until Radosh tells me to stop."

"Thank you! I've been here all week!"

"This song goes out to the one that got away."
Submitted by Elisa Narsu
Basking Ridge, N.J.
"And every year they return to my piano to spawn and die."
Submitted by Frank Bruno
Sacramento, Calif.
"Any requests before I tell you about tonight's specials?"
Submitted by Brian Shuman
New York, N.Y.

"It's OK folks, they're not dead, they're drunk; it's vodka, and this way I don't have to get up for refills."

"Kill kill kill kill kill the poor
Kill kill kill kill kill the poor
Kill kill kill kill kill the poor tonigh a a a ight"

"They were actually the ones who were judging your contest captions."

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