I feel I can say without risk of hyperbole that the quality of the material I post here is a billion times better than, well, everything else except what you can find at The Onion.  Week after week I’ve given you the benefit of my fingers.  

Wait. That didn’t come out quite right. That sounded kind of icky.

But I digress.  In exchange for the hours and hours of serious laughs and hilarious think pieces I’ve provided here, I now ask y’all out there in cyberland for a favor.

1.  Go to

2.  Find the following photo:


karen 1

3.  Click where indicated.  Contest entrants will be judged on how high their photo “ranks” from 1 to 5 stars, so make sure you click on the fifth star to give Karen a Five Star rating.

4.  If you can’t find the photo – it keeps moving as Karen’s ranking goes up due to votes from people just like you – then go to the top of the screen and use the “Name Search” button to search for Karen by her first name.

5. Do this once every day until I tell you to stop.

That’s all I want you to do.   Allow me to explain:

This is my friend, Karen:


Karen 2.1

A force to be reckoned with.


This is her husband, Gerald:


I have used this photo as my avatar. Please don't tell Gerald.

Not just a nice guy - he invented Ethereal and Wire Shark. Look it up.


This is Gerald and Karen’s wonderful daughter, Lainey:


Laney 1.3

I sometimes fear I am destined to play Aristotle to her Alexander. This is one bright kid.


Let me teach you a very wonderful Greek word – “mishpoka.” It means “family” in every way the word “family” is used best.

Karen, Gerald and Laney are mishpoka.  I consider them family, and I don’t invite people into my family quickly or easily, because when that happens I and all my progeny become obligated until the end of time.  It is a happy thing, a combining of  the strands of destiny and future history, but it is a rare thing.

So these are nice, good people. And I love them dearly. Which is why I am here asking you to travel the internet to obscure websites to vote for something I really need to explain.

Both Karen and my wife are big fans of a television show called Mad Men.


It is actually a fairly cool show.

It is actually a fairly cool show.


Okay, so this show – Mad Men –  is conducting a contest, with the winner getting a walk-on role in a future episode. Whoever gets the most “votes” for their photo – posted on the Mad Men website – will get a walk-on role in a future episode.

For people like Karen, this is too good a chance to pass up.  She wants it. 

And, therefore, so do I.  Which is why I am asking you to go   and click on Karen’s photo, which looks like this:


karen 1.1

When you click were indicated, you cast your vote for Karen – and when she wins, you will feel the satisfaction one can only obtain by doing a mitzvah (another Greek word) by being part of the chain of cause and effect that gets Karen to the set of Mad Men!

Any questions?



UPDATE:  As of this entry, Karen’s photo has been online for about 24 hours and, with your help, she has risen from 380th to 8th!!! among women and 17th overall.  That is just amazingly wonderful.  On Karen’s behalf, I thank you all. 

Remember:  you can – and must – vote each day until the contest is over.  I think the Mad Men website keeps track of the time for the first vote and won’t let you vote again until 24 hours have passed.  So that means you have to vote around the same time each day.



SECOND UPDATE:  I read the rules of the contest, and they are going to pick the top ten women AND the top ten men. I am toying with the idea of using a fake name and entering this photo in the contest:


Enersto Von Mueller

Enersto Von Mueller


I am fairly confident that “Ernesto” won’t win the contest.  The photo is grossly unappealing and, although it could arguably be considered “Ernesto’s” interpretation of the Mad Men essential angst, it most assuredly isn’t want they want to see in any of their episodes. The photo is reminiscent of Goya’s depction of Kronos, which, if memory serves, looks a lot like this:



But, for me, any chance of winning isn’t the point. The point is seeing how far up in the rankings I get despite looking like this:


PNB Mad Men 1


And – even better – since they are picking the top ten men and the top ten women, my entry into the mix will only affect male contestants, if it has any affect at all.  So my experiment won’t harm Karen’s chances.

Which is really what matters here, don’t you think?




13 Responses to “MEET KAREN”

  1. Flinthart Says:

    Click click and away!


  2. She got my vote.


  3. I voted for her. Looks like only she and a few others had enough common sense to dress the part.


  4. paulboylan Says:

    Thanks, mates. I know Karen appreciates it. Do you think Birmo would give a plug in his Geek column? Karen’s husband, Gerald is actually very famous in the Geekverse. If you are a computer geek, you’ve heard of Ethereal. If you are a really big computer geek, you’ve heard of Ethereal’s successor, Wire Shark. And if you are a super geek, then you know who wrote the program – Karen’s husband, Gerald Combs. Surely that is enough geekosity to warrant a mention in The Geek.


  5. Done.


  6. Ernesto you are one big spunk!


  7. paulboylan Says:

    Bangar – many thanks.

    Bart – way cool, dude! I’ll show Karen and she will love it.

    Natalie – You have no idea.


  8. Ana Nymous Says:

    I think you might be surprised, but Ernesto is off to a late start. Jump in early next time. For now keep plugging and voting for Karen.


  9. paulboylan Says:

    No! I can make Ernesto famous! Rich and powerful! Powerful and rich! I will enter him in this puny contest and then, and then, we shall conquer the world!


  10. paulboylan Says:

    Okay. Even I don’t believe it.


  11. Me thinks you protest too much Mr Boylan, C’mon, admit it – you have the secret hots for that Palin chich, don’t you?


  12. paulboylan Says:

    hughsey – I will not admit that. What I will admit is that there is something unnatural and wrong about a women who is so very far away and who is not my wife knowing me so well.


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