ASTERISK: “I can’t even look at Twitter anymore. It’s ‘Hashtag’ this. ‘Hashtag’ that. #IceBucketChallenge. #TBT. Every handle starts with @. Social media has passed me by.
AGENT: Listen, I know you’re upset. You look around the keyboard and see other special characters doing better. But remember who you are. You are Asterisk. You own footnotes.
ASTERISK: Ever see a footnote in a Snapchat?
AGENT: You’ve been on the keypad since the touchtone phone.
ASTERISK: No one even knows what I’m there for. Including me. Have you ever needed to use the asterisk key on a phone? Even once? They only want you to press Pound.
AGENT: Everyone has their ups and downs. Look what Dollar Sign went through in 2008. We thought it was done. But it’s back—bigger than ever.
ASTERISK: You should have signed me for Internet addresses. Think of where we’d be now—markruffalo*gmail.com.
AGENT: You came to that meeting drunk. They didn’t want to take a chance on you. @ was a relative unknown—but it was reliable. Sometimes boring is what they’re looking for.
ASTERISK: I’m roadkill on the information highway.
AGENT: Put down that bottle—it’s ten in the morning, for Chrissake. And stay upbeat—we’re implementing a new multi-platform brand leveraging strategy. I’ve got you short-listed for bandleader on Colbert.
ASTERISK: If Ampersand lands that gig I’m going to kill myself.
AGENT: Relax. Things are happening for you. Trader Joe’s is market testing Asterisk Sriracha sauce on the Upper West Side.
ASTERISK: What about a documentary? Helvetica had one.
AGENT: Helvetica is one well-connected font.
ASTERISK: Do you know that Exclamation Point and I were roommates at Haverford? And now it’s infested every email and text. Exclamation Point convinced people that you sound depressed if you don’t use it.
AGENT: Or angry.
ASTERISK: It’s extortion.
AGENT: Let it go—it’s punctuation—that’s a whole ‘nother level.
ASTERISK: Punctuation is such an exclusive club—no Jews.
AGENT: That’s why we changed your name from Axlerod to Asterisk.
ASTERISK: No one can pronounce asterisk. Is it is Asteriks? Astrik? After two martinis I can’t get it right myself.
AGENT: We’re focus grouping AsterX—
ASTERISK: What am I, an erectile dysfunction drug? How much am I spending on this re-branding, anyway?
AGENT: That absurd toupee you wear isn’t helping. Who do you think you are, William Shatner?
ASTERISK: I’m an asterisk—I can’t be bald on top.
AGENT: We got you into a few emoticons.
ASTERISK: Even Semi-Colon is eating our lunch in the emoticon space. If I see one more winking smile…
AGENT: Yeah, but Go the F**k to Sleep bought you a cottage in Montauk.
ASTERISK: You know I hate working blue. Speaking of which, score me an invite—I hear Percent is having a key party in Greenwich, with all the top one… well you know. And the Parentheses twins are going—they just got matching ankle tattoos.
AGENT: Now that’s my boy.