Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Next time you're in a nightclub, I want you to look for guidos. There's something about them I want you to see. If you're not in their natural New York habitat, they might be difficult to find, but if you are making the rounds of the Manhattan club dungheap this weekend, I want you to focus on some guidos because I'd like to share this with you. We've noticed a certain something about them at work, and it's turned into a running theme at our door. An observation that'll be difficult to shake once you've noticed it for the first time.

What I want you to scan the room for are guidos talking on their cell phones. You'll be doing this because I want you to notice the stance. The Official Guido Cell Phone Stance. You see, when "normal" people use their phones, they look something like this. Or this. Or perhaps this. Note the posture the people in the pictures have in common: relaxed, slightly slouched and somewhat oblivious to their surroundings. For them, it would seem, the phone is an instrument used solely for the purpose of communicating with others, and this is reflected in the way they're seemingly concentrating all their energies on the task at hand -- namely, the exchange of useful information.

The key kinesiological point here is arm angle. Look at any of these three examples again, and you'll observe that the "cell arm" of the "normal" is held in a natural manner, with the subject's elbow tucked comfortably into his ribcage. At its most active, the "cell elbow" of the "normal" may be observed to point at a spot approximately one to two meters wide of the "cell side foot," but this is rare because most "normals" desire the illusory feeling of privacy afforded by the elbow tuck. A slightly flaring elbow is common to most "normals" who use their phones while ambulating, as illustrated in the second example.

The guido, by contrast, tends to take a significantly more active approach to the use of his phone. He's rigid, knees slightly flexed, with most of his weight on the balls of his feet. His back remains perfectly arched, his entire upper torso in an exaggerated forward lean, and excessive tension can be readily observed in his trapezius muscles, which are held in a firmly "shrugged" position as he forces his head forward.

Again, what I'm directing you to here is arm angle. The elbow tuck style is evidently not something they've been teaching at any of the prestigious guido finishing schools scattered throughout the metropolitan area. Instead, the guido favors the less common flaring elbow, where the upper portion -- above the elbow -- of his "cell arm" forms a precise right angle with his body, his elbow pointing at spot approximately shoulder height on the wall directly to his "cell side."

They all do this. Why they do it is beyond my ken. The better to flex the biceps they've trained every day for the past week to the exclusion of every other muscle in their bodies? Because being on the phone leaves one vulnerable to being "jacked in the face for no reason," and they need to be all tensed up and ready for Guido Fight Action? Because being a clubgoing guido means you're perpetually coked up -- at a minimum -- and you're completely incapable of relaxing your extremities, even when calling your "boys" or lying to your "bitch" about your whereabouts?

Who the fuck knows? Watch for it, though. You'll remember what I've written, and you'll do the hysterical laughing.