Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Clark Brooks, Cancer Hater

Hi, I’m Clark Brooks. You may know me from such anti-cancer events as “Temple Terrace Relay For Life 2008” and “Temple Terrace Relay For Life 2009: Electric Boogaloo”. I’m here today to tell you about my involvement with a new anti-cancer event, the Susan G Komen Florida Suncoast Race for the Cure. Well, it’s not a new event but my involvement with it is. I’m in as a member of LoveBees Lovers, in honor of my dear friend Donna who Loves Bees (hey, don’t ask me; I don’t cast judgment on whatever freaky stuff you people are into…although that sounds like something of a contradiction, in which case, Wow, look how complex I am!). A bunch of likeminded fools and me are heading to Vinoy Park in St. Pete this Saturday at 7:30 a.m. to Race for the Cure, as opposed to what I would normally do on a Saturday morning, which is Race for a Breakfast Burrito (actually, I’m going to do both…shh, don’t tell).

You, on the other hand, got it made. You get to stay in bed under the cozy covers. Seems almost unfair, doesn’t it? Man! You’re right, it is grossly unjust! What can we do about it? Oh wait, I know! Tell you what, you chip in a buck or two for the cause and I’ll just look the other way. I’ll even bring you a breakfast burrito if there are any left over (note: I really doubt that’s gonna happen so don’t hold your breath)

Think about it; I get up early and do the race while you sleep in with a (nearly non-existent) chance of having a delicious breakfast burrito served to you in bed, all in the name of fighting breast cancer. I challenge you to find a sweeter deal (but if you do, please keep it to yourself so you don’t screw up what I’ve got going over here).

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Poetry Meeting

I was at one of my favorite local establishments the other day, just killing some time and talking to the manager who is a dear and relentlessly patient and tolerant friend when the staff started re-arranging the furniture. "What's going on?", I asked. My friend answered, "They're setting up for the poetry meeting tonight." "A poetry meeting? What the hell is that?" "Just what it sounds like. They're a group of local poets and they get together sometimes and talk about poetry." At this point I began to laugh. Hard. And obnoxiously loud. Howling might be a better description. "A meeting about poetry? You've got to be kidding me!" "Hey, be nice. You're a writer. You should be more supportive." Of course, she's right. But I'm also a jerk. "Please, Poetry is for songwriters who can't play guitar. The only thing I can think of that's more useless than a bunch of poets hanging around and reciting poetry is a bunch of poets hanging around not even reciting poetry." Of course, I didn't stick around to see if it was interesting or entertaining or of any artistic merit whatsoever (what fun would that be?) but that doesn't stop me from visualizing how it went down...

THE POETRY MEETING
"Okay everyone. Let's be seated. Welcome! It's great to see all of you again, and I notice we have some newcomers as well. Welcome to you folks also! Let's get started. Does anyone have any new business? Yes, Amber?"
"Yes. I would like to spend the entire meeting staring at this dead flower and weeping softly."
"Well, I was looking for new business and that's pretty standard..."
"I'm going to do it anyway."
"Okay, well, then I don't think we need a vote. Let's move on. Anybody else? Yes, Edna?"
"I'd like it on the record that sarcasm and juvenile humor in a critique is not helpful. As you all know, my poetry is inspired by the beauty of nature, specifically birds and flowers and fauna. I take a great deal of pride in my work and to read a critique that sounds like something scrawled in a public restroom is hurtful to me."
"Yes Edna, that is..."
"And I'd like to say that parody is a valid form of criticism and an art form in it's own rite and if somebody is too thin-skinned for poetry, maybe they should take up cross-stitching."
"Hold on, Stan..."
"Scribbling 'How much wood could a woodcock block if a woodcock could block cock' on a napkin and stapling to my poem is not a form of parody!"
"All right, Edna and Stan, I'm just going to recommend that you not read or critique each other's work, and maybe you shouldn't really even interact with one another..."
"But she's my ride here!"
"I'm your wife, you ass!"
"Excuse me. Excuse me please."
"Ah yes, one of the new people! Welcome! What's your name, fellow creative spirit?"
"Um, my name is Darnell and I'm an up-and-coming hip-hop artist."
"That's fantastic! See everyone? Hip-hop is the language of today's streets. It's poetry presented in a dynamic, vibrant form, speaking directly to young people. It's raw and passionate and exciting. And most importantly, it's living, breathing proof that the art of poetry is continuing to evolve! What's on your mind, Darnell?"
"I have completely run out of words that rhyme with 'bitch' and was hoping somebody here might have some suggestions."
"..."
"I've got a few for you, son!"
"Oh, shut up, Stan."

Friday, September 24, 2010

Outlaws, my eye

Last night at "work", I found myself listening to some soft rock music piped in for atmosphere and the song "Ride Like The Wind" by Christopher Cross came on. It's been a long time since I heard it so I paid attention to the lyrics. And after carefully considering them, all I can say is: Bullshit.
For starters, this is a picture of Christopher Cross:


Try to ignore that he looks like your Aunt Shelly who lives in Boca Raton with her "best friend" Susan (or don't) but do try to focus on him being the guy behind these lyrics:


It is the night. My body's weak.
I'm on the run. No time to sleep.
I've got to ride.

Ride like the wind to be free again.
And I got such a long way to go.
To make it to the border of Mexico.
So I'll ride like the wind.

I was born the son of a lawless man.
Always spoke my mind with a gun in my hand.
Lived nine lives
gunned down ten.
Gonna ride like the wind.

(chorus)

Accused and tried and told to hang
I was no where in sight
when the church bells rang.
Never was the kind to do as I was told.
Gonna ride like the wind before I get old.

That's not Lil' Wayne or TI, that's the guy picture above, the one who looks like he's waiting for his longtime companion to fetch another round of mimosas. The song doesn't mention what the unspeakable crime was (it's that unspeakable!) but I can't even imagine the authorities being that worried about nailing Christopher Cross before he escapes across the border. "Attention all units: Keep an eye out for a doughy white guy...wait, what? He might be with Michael McDonald? This changes everything; TWO doughy white guys, fugitives, believed to be heading for Mexico. Apprehend on sight...but don't, like, put yourself out or anything. Maybe just beef up patrols around the breakfast bar at the Chula Vista Shoney's. That should be fine."
I don't mean to pick on Christopher Cross. Because it seems to me that by and large, rock and roll stars do a pretty shitty job of portraying bad asses and outlaws. Oh sure, there are some legitimate bad asses out there. But for every band that comes across more like a street gang than a rock band, you get four or five skeevy, Kid Rock-like posers. Or worse, for every Toby Keith you get a Toby Keith. That's right, this guy...

Really doesn't want you to know about this guy...

Hey, I don't remember Toby Keith being in DeBarge! Say meow, kitty.
But where the illusion really falls down is in the songs. Here are some truly laughable attempts by some well-known artists to spin tales of rock 'n roll desperado derring-do...

PAUL MCCARTNEY & WINGS: BAND ON THE RUN
Well, the rain exploded with a mighty crash as we fell into the sun
And the first one said to the second one there I hope you're having fun
Band On The Run, Band On The Run.
And the jailer man and Sailor Sam were searching everyone
For the band on the run
Band on the run
Band on the run
Band on the run
And the jailer man and Sailor Sam were searching every one
So Paul and his mates have escaped from jail into the desert where he swears they'll never be found, presumably free to live out their days performing concerts for local indigents and smoking whatever vegetation they come across (which I'm pretty sure would be Paul McCartney's dream come true). This in spite of the local authorities enlisting the help of some naval personnel to apprehend them. Normally, you'd think this kind of thing would fall out of their jurisdiction but if you're stationed at a naval base in the middle of some damn desert, what else do you have to do?

THE STEVE MILLER BAND: TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN
This heres a story about Billy Joe and Bobbie Sue
Two young lovers with nothin better to do
Than sit around the house, get high, and watch the tube
And here is what happened when they decided to cut loose

They headed down to, ooh, old El Paso
That's where they ran into a great big hassle
Billy Joe shot a man while robbing his castle
Bobbie Sue took the money and run

Go on take the money and run
Go on take the money and run
Go on take the money and run
Go on take the money and run

Billy Mack is a detective down in Texas
You know he knows just exactly what the facts is
He aint gonna let those two escape justice
He makes his livin off of the peoples taxes

Bobbie Sue, whoa, whoa, she slipped away
Billy Joe caught up to her the very next day
They got the money, hey
You know they got away
They headed down south and they're still running today
Singin go on take the money and run
Go on take the money and run
Well, now we're getting somewhere! Steve Miller isn't singing about himself or his band as fugitives on the run. Instead, he casts a couple of TV-addled burnouts in those roles. Okay, so it's not the legend of Butch and Sundance but at least it's believable for a change. I can even believe they got away (in spite of the honorable public servant Mack's dedication to his job, if they got across the border, there's nothing he can do about it) and are still running today...but possibly not together. Bobbie Sue tried to ditch Billy Joe once. It's impossible to believe she wouldn't try it again. Theirs is not a relationship built on trust.

BON JOVI: WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE and BLAZE OF GLORY
It's all the same, only the names will change
Everyday it seems we're wasting away
Another place where the faces are so cold
I'd drive all night just to get back home

I'm a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride
I'm wanted dead or alive
Wanted dead or alive

Sometimes I sleep, sometimes it's not for days
And the people I meet always go their separate ways
Sometimes you tell the day
By the bottle that you drink
And times when you're alone all you do is think

I walk these streets, a loaded six string on my back
I play for keeps, 'cause I might not make it back
I been everywhere, and I'm standing tall
I've seen a million faces an I've rocked them all

I'm a cowboy, on a steel horse I ride
I'm wanted dead or alive
I'm a cowboy, I got the night on my side
I'm wanted dead or alive
And I ride, dead or alive
I still drive, dead or alive
Dead or alive

I wake up in the morning
And I raise my weary head
I've got an old coat for a pillow
And the earth was last night's bed
I don't know where I'm going
Only God knows where I've been
I'm a devil on the run
A six gun lover
A candle in the wind, yeah

When you're brought into this world
They say you're born in sin
Well at least they gave me something
I didn't have to steal or have to win
Well, they tell me that I'm wanted
Yeah, I'm a wanted man
I'm a colt through your stable
I'm what Cain was to Abel
Mister catch me if you can

I'm going down (down) in a blaze of glory
Take me now but know the truth
I'm going out (out) in a blaze of glory
And Lord, I never drew first but I drew first blood
I'm no one's son, call me young gun

You ask about my conscience
And I offer you my soul
You ask if I'll grow to be a wise man
Well I ask if I'll grow old
You ask me if I've known love
And what it's like to sing songs in the rain
Well I've seen love come, I've seen it shot down
I've seen it die in vain

Shot down (down) in a blaze of glory
Take me now but know the truth
'Cause I'm going down (down) in a blaze of glory
Lord, I never drew first but I drew first blood
I'm the devil's son, call me young gun, na... yeah

Each night I go to bed
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
No I ain't looking for forgiveness
But before I'm six foot deep
Lord, I gotta ask a favor
And I hope you'll understand
'Cause I've lived life to the fullest
Let this boy die like a man
Staring down a bullet
Let me make my final stand

Shot down (down) in a blaze of glory
Take me now but know the truth
I'm going out (out) in a blaze of glory
Lord, I never drew first but I drew first blood
I'm no one's son, call me young gun
I'm a young gun, yeah
Young gun, yeah..., Young gun
One time I went to a hockey game with a friend. An advertisement for an upcoming Bon Jovi concert came on the jumbotron and he just started laughing hysterically. I didn't really get that at the time but upon listening to songs like this/these, I do now. I entered this as one entry because I wasn't sure it was two songs. And reading it like this, I'm still not sure. It's like The Godfather and The Godfather II of cheesy, Aquanet-drenched, nihilistic rock 'n roll acid-washed denim outlaw cowboy fantasies and now I don't know how more people don't just burst into hysterics upon hearing the first chords, knowing the full-of-shitness that follows. Unlike the other examples posted above, Bon Jovi doesn't escape and doesn't even seem to want to, I guess because some people still think a doomed anti-hero is somehow cooler than somebody who actually has their shit together enough to get themselves out of their own predicament. But the boasting here doesn't sound cool or particularly tough, at least not consistently; one minute he's a devil on the run, the next he's a candle in the wind? Is he Marilyn Manson or Marilyn Monroe? And he's wanted for what, rocking faces? I guess a million of them is a lot, but exactly how many faces are you allowed to rock before it's a felony, punishable by death?
This is what I imagine it sounds like when some dumbass, lily-white, punk-ass teenager from a gated suburb community gets locked up in the county jail for a couple of hours because he thought it would be funny to throw his soft drink at the clerk in a fast food drive thru and got caught so he feels the need to invent a tough backstory to try to impress the actual thugs he finds himself in there with in the hopes that it keeps them from ripping off the tightey-whiteys his mom just washed for him that day and turning him into some guy named Big Rob's girlfriend.
What a punk-ass. By comparison, Christopher Cross comes across like Scarface Capone.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Interview: Alex On The Edge

I love weird people. I'm being completely sincere. In my humble opinion, no form of entertainment on earth even comes close to simply observing/listening to/interacting with people who are a bit...off-center. These days, those people are harder to find. Either they're wrapped up in the conformity-via-individuality myth ("I want to stand out from the crowd just like everybody else!") being perpetrated by various imagemakers and trendsetters or they're so friggin' off the wall that they're actually dangerous ("Guns! Bibles! Certain parts of the Constitution! Down with everything else!") that the good ol' fashioned All-American Weirdo has become an endangered species. But luckily, there are still a few out there. Recently, I found one and I'd like to share her with you.
Her name is Alex Edgerton. She has a blog and she posts on Twitter. Here are some highlights:

"The girl I'm stalking is awesome! She's so cute when she acts like she doesn't love me :) "

"My therapist says to stay away from negative people. So I've been trying to avoid myself as much as possible." 

"I'm gonna buy low & trade high. Or buy low & lose money. One of those 2."

"People make me so mad. Well not ALL people. Just my mother."

"Why is Bristol Palin on 'Dancing w/ The Stars'? What makes her a star? It's not 'Dancing w/ Teen Moms'"

She's also a poet:
If you don't water the tree,
it won't grow and give you fruit.
And one day you're gonna be hungry, bitch.

And a philosopher:
"The luckiest people in the world are the ones who are too stupid to care."

Isn't she great? I should ask her to marry me! Oh wait, I already did...  
HER: "Lets DO! Although we might fuckin kill each other cuz we're both moody people" 
ME: "Well, I don't think there's any way we could actually live with each other. But I think we'd have fun at social gatherings!"
HER: "LOL! Yeah social gatherings would be a blast. Specially since we're both such cheerful socialites!"
I think she's perfect! Sure, she's a lesbian with a completely dysfunctional family but every relationship takes some work I've dealt with tougher circumstances. Still, I thought it would be a good idea to get to know her better, so I asked her some interview questions, which I will share with you all now...

Sometimes people think that those who speak their mind are crazy. Do you think that's a sign of being crazy?
"I think it's a sign of being confident & not giving a damn what people think."

Do you think you're crazy?
"Yes. We all are. I'm crazy in a good way. My crazy is better than everyone else's crazy. I'm blessed."

Are you aware of how funny you are?
"Absolutely. I am god damn hilarious. I make MYSELF laugh sometimes."

Is everything you say straight up, raw truth or do you sometimes say things for effect?
"I sometimes exaggerate for the entertainment value. But for the most part, it's right on the money."

Even the stuff about your mom and dad, aunts and uncles, etc.?
"You can't make this shit up. Swear to god the family stuff is for real."

What's something that has always annoyed you?
"My mother".

What's something new that's annoying you?
"The wasp nest outside my house."

When I suggested we get married, you said it was a good idea except we might kill each other. If you were going to kill me, as your husband, how would you do it?
"I'd have to make it look like an accident because when I kill, I do it well. I'd probably go with the idea from Eminem's latest song; tie you to the bed post & set the house on fire. Mind you, this would appear to be an accidental fire. Oh I'd also have a big fuckin' life insurance policy on you. How would you kill ME? We need to sort this out before we get married."
I'd do something classy. Shakespeare used poison to kill a lot of his characters. And daggers. But daggers seem like a lot of work and kind of messy. I think a nice poison would work best for me.

What are your plans for the upcoming holidays? 
"Are holidays upcoming? Ok um... Halloween is the soonest so I plan to rob a few kids for their candy. I really like candy." 

For even more awesomeness, visit Alex On The Edge.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Definitely a bad news/good news situation

THE BAD NEWS:

LONDON (Reuters) – The Titanic hit an iceberg in 1912 because of a basic steering error, and only sank as fast as it did because an official persuaded the captain to continue sailing, an author said in an interview published on Wednesday.

Louise Patten, a writer and granddaughter of Titanic second officer Charles Lightoller, said the truth about what happened nearly 100 years ago had been hidden for fear of tarnishing the reputation of her grandfather, who later became a war hero.

Lightoller, the most senior officer to have survived the disaster, covered up the error in two inquiries on both sides of the Atlantic because he was worried it would bankrupt the ill-fated liner's owners and put his colleagues out of a job.

"They could easily have avoided the iceberg if it wasn't for the blunder," Patten told the Daily Telegraph.

"Instead of steering Titanic safely round to the left of the iceberg, once it had been spotted dead ahead, the steersman, Robert Hitchins, had panicked and turned it the wrong way."

Patten, who made the revelations to coincide with the publication of her new novel "Good as Gold" into which her account of events are woven, said that the conversion from sail ships to steam meant there were two different steering systems.

Crucially, one system meant turning the wheel one way and the other in completely the opposite direction.

Once the mistake had been made, Patten added, "they only had four minutes to change course and by the time (first officer William) Murdoch spotted Hitchins' mistake and then tried to rectify it, it was too late."

Patten's grandfather was not on watch at the time of the collision, but he was present at a final meeting of the ship's officers before the Titanic went down.

There he heard not only about the fatal mistake but also the fact that J. Bruce Ismay, chairman of Titanic's owner the White Star Line persuaded the captain to continue sailing, sinking the ship hours faster than would otherwise have happened.

"If Titanic had stood still, she would have survived at least until the rescue ship came and no one need have died," Patten said.

The RMS Titanic was the world's biggest passenger liner when it left Southampton, England, for New York on its maiden voyage on April 10, 1912. Four days into the trip, the ship hit an iceberg and sank, taking more than 1,500 passengers with it.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato)

THE GOOD NEWS:

A century later, we get to have this...

In which case: WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

A short conversation about gazing at the moon

"Hey, did you check out International Observe the Moon Night this weekend?"

"Of course not. Why would I waste my time doing that?"

"I don't know. It's the moon. It's pretty cool if you think about it."

"It's not cool at all. It's completely useless. Astronauts went there years ago and all they found was rocks, water and air. The only cool things up there are things we left; some golf balls and a couple of used-up robots. Stuff like that. Who needs it?"

"Actually, there's no air on the moon..."

"Even more useless than I thought."

Thursday, September 16, 2010

2010 Best Of The Bay Awards: "How'd you do, Clark?"

How do you think I did, motherf...?
Yep, shut out again. This time in two categories. I was utterly devastated. However, being the emotional (and intellectual) equivalent of an 8-year-old Little Leaguer who struck out with the bases loaded does occasionally have an upside...
...I heal quickly and easily.
Seriously, I look forward to this every year now because win or lose (well, lose...because I never win), it gives me the chance to "give props" and say sincere Thank Yous.
In no particular order:
  • Thanks as always to Creative Loafing for throwing a great party. I would have liked to have mingled more and met some of the cool people in attendance but it was such a great party that so many cool people showed up that I freaked out, got claustrophobic and had to spend most of the night downstairs, holding court with some really cool people at The Spaghetti Warehouse. This also allowed me to catch most of the Rays righteous win over the Yankees (cripes Jeter, are you friggin' kidding me? That was some A-Rod B.S. there, pal. You're supposed to be the classy Yankee) which didn't stink.
  • Catherine Durkin Robinson won the award for best blogger and I've relentlessly "attacked" her during this whole award voting process because...well, it's fun...and I kind of had a feeling she'd win this thing. That's because she is a fantastic writer who deserves an award. You really should check out her site.
  • I honestly don't know who won Best Twitter Or Whatever It's Called which is sloppiness on my part. Sorry. But whomever it is, yeah, definitely follow them because they're a genius. Let's say it's Miss Destructo. It may very well be her and she actually is a genius so let's go with that. In the event it's not her, we'll try to correct that at a later date (suuuure we will).
  • Huge thanks as always to my sisters K & R whose unwavering love and support for me and my goofy-ass antics can never be shown adequate appreciation.
  • Biggest thanks of all to each and every person who wastes precious time and brain cells reading this site. I am awestruck and flattered beyond words that you enjoy my self-indulgent twaddle enough to come here at all, let alone return. If I knew all of your names, I'd list them here and then immediately regret doing so because it would expose you to spammers, scammers and stalkers (and worse!) which would pretty much be the exact opposite of the gesture of appreciation I intended.

And until next year, once again the pressure is off; no awards means no unrealistic expectations of award wining content.

I love all y'all!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

One job I couldn't do at the ol' ballpark

I went to a baseball game last night and paid attention to the vendors roaming the stands. Most of them have a standard line of patter they use when hawking their wares. Something along the lines of "HEY, COLD BEE-AH HEE-AH! GETCHA ICE COLD BEE-AH OVAH HEE-AH!" I'm sure you know what I'm talking about.
I don't think I could do that job. Not because of the heavy lifting and all the stair-climbing, although I'm not going to dismiss that because it's obviously a physically demanding job. No, it's because I think I'd lose focus and would just kind of launch into stream-of-consciousness yelling. I blame this on my inability to focus as well as this being the age of Twitter, Facebook and just plain oversharing in general. Sure, I'd start out with "HEY, COLD BEE-AH HEE-AH! GETCHA ICE COLD BEE-AH OVAH HEE-AH!" but by the fourth inning I'd be slipping in "HEY, THIS THING IS HEAVY OVAH HEE-AH!" and "GOOD GAWD, IT'S IMPOSSIBLE FOR ME TO BE SWEATIER THAN I AM RIGHT THIS MINUTE!" and "HEY, WHOSE BRIGHT IDEA WAS IT TO CONSTRUCT AN ENTIRE BUILDING OUT OF STAIRS ANYWAY? AM I RIGHT? THIS IS MADNESS!". By the end of the game, it would be like "SO I JUST GOT MY PHONE BILL. MAN, AM I GLAD I SIGNED THAT NEW CONTRACT OVAH HEE-AH!" and "I'M HUNGRY. I HOPE SUBWAY IS STILL OPEN AFTER THE GAME. OR I COULD GET ONE OF THOSE $2 COMBOS AT TACO BELL. THAT'S A PRETTY GOOD DEAL. YOU SHOULD CHECK IT OUT!"

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Todd Barry is annoyed and so am I

Todd Barry is a very funny stand-up comedian. He recently played a gig in St. Paul, Minnesota, a show that was reviewed
on a web site called City Pages, which appears to me to be the Minneapolis/St. Paul equivalent of Tampa Bay's Creative Loafing. This review, in particular the writer's acknowledged failure to list or even remember the opening comedian's name, caused Barry to ask via Twitter if this was a standard or even acceptable practice:

"Question for writers: if you're reviewing show + don't remember opening act's name, is this the way you handle it?"
My answer, as a writer (for what it's worth); absolutely not. This is sloppy, lazy writing that shouldn't be tolerated under any circumstances. The fact that it's so disrespectful to a professional entertainer (whose name is Tim Harmston, by the way) adds insult to the mix. If the writer thought Harmston sucked, there's no excuse for at least show a basic level of respect of using the guy's name. Beyond that, what the hell is the point of this post anyway? It's not really a review; he doesn't even mention whether Barry was funny or not. The only thing you take away from it is that the writer attended the show but didn't think it was important to mention anything other than that, padded by some "clever" phraseology (I picture the writer sitting back in his chair, very pleased with himself after concocting the stream of nonsensical gibberish that closes the piece).
This is what can happen when publications dabble in blogs. Many seem to believe there's journalism and then there's blogs, and that they don't owe their readers their best effort when they publish things in blog form. If you want their 'A' game, read the magazine. I don't use my blog for news or journalism, but a lot of people do. Those people work hard to check facts, write well and give their readers quality, pertinent content, all of which is missing from whatever this is supposed to be.
My point here is that all readers should demand and expect a certain standard of effort, if not quality, from the writers you read, be they bloggers or "real" journalists. Your time and attention is valuable. Don't waste it on those who don't respect you enough to give you (and/or their subjects) their best.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Misery loves company

"No one in history has been through anything like this. Jesus had just one part of the world down on him. We've got the whole world." -- Wayne Sapp, on criticism his organization, the Dove World Outreach Center, has faced for their plan to burn copies of the Koran at a rally on Saturday, September 11th.

"Uh, hello?" -- Adolph Hitler, fancy book burning aficionado


Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Take Clark to school!

Now that your precious wee ones are back in school, don't you think it's about time the little yard apes actually learned somethin'?
Me too.
That's why I am availing my services, my experience, my very own self to participate in YOUR ankle biter's Great American Teach In Day!
The Great American Teach In (also known as "Educator For A Day"), in case you don't know, is scheduled for November 18th, 2010, and is like a national show-and-tell day only with real humans instead of grasshoppers imprisoned in Mason jars or some stupid doll collection. People from all walks of life come to school and talk to kids about what it is they do for a living. As a professional sportswriter and possibly an award winner of some sort (depending on what happens at The Loafies), I would be a fascinating guest at your adorable curtain climber's school, guaranteed to inspire and be far more entertaining than just about anybody else that would be participating*.
This, like my ongoing quest to commit an actual, real, legally binding wedding as an ordained minister is completely sincere. If you're interested, please contact me via comments here or drop me a note at Facebook, Twitter or any other means of communication at your disposal.
Now, there are some provisos. While this would be completely free, no charge to you or the learning institution(s), I do have some terms that must be met before we can reach an agreement.
First, this offer is limited to schools in Hillsborough and Pinellas counties (Florida) only, unless you're willing to provide airfare reimbursement or suitably comparable travel arrangements. I do enjoy hovercrafts.
Second, I am willing to visit multiple schools if the demand dictates, but wherever I am at lunchtime, I'm gonna need a meal. And not just some crap either. As a professional sportswriter, bon vivant and raconteur, I require nourishment that pleases my delicate and discerning palate. This is utterly non-negotiable due to my refined tastes and the high standards of epicurean excellence I demand at all times.
Thirdly, and possibly most importantly, it would be a good idea if the teacher "gets" me. While my presentation will be geared towards the maturity level of the audience with particular attention paid to the sensitivity of the rug rats in attendance, my views on any number of topics that may be addressed could be construed as..."non-traditional". I will not be offensive or ribald, and I won't proselytize any political, religious or social agendas but some of what I say may slightly contradict what is usually taught in that particular classroom. Basically, I believe I'm doing the youth of America a disservice if I don't point out that just because so-called grown-up experts say that dinosaurs no longer roam the earth, it's still not a good idea to leave things a Tyrannosaurus Rex finds delicious under their beds. That's all. So it's kinda important that the teacher knows where I'm coming from. Ideally, somebody open-minded with a healthy sense of humor who sees the value in imagination and creativity.
Anyway, that's it. I'm ready to impart wisdom and drop life lessons. I think you'll find that at my omelet station, the only eggs I crack are eggs of knowledge and the only cheese I sprinkle in is cheese of wonder, with fresh diced tomatoes of experience and a side order of laughter bacon, served with either hashbrowns of integrity, home fries of courtesy or a fruit cup of respect. First come, first served!

* Guarantee does not include helicopter pilots, people who work with animals or any profession where vehicles with sirens and flashing lights are involved.

Monday, September 06, 2010

All I need is a miracle

When it comes to incredible things, I don't think I ask for much. All I want is for a bolt of lightning to hit this guy...
...and these guys...

...so they come to life and wage an epic battle right in the middle of the street between these two stores. That's all. If one of them were to pick up a steakhouse and throw it at one of the others, that would be a bonus. I'm not greedy.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

We're on a road to nowhere


Of all the positions on a NASCAR pit crew, "Navigator" is probably the least essential.