Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Bobble, bobble, I love toys that wobble

Just for funsies, I thought I would share some of my bobblehead collection with you. This isn't all of them, just a small sample. I'm embarrassed to tell you how many I have. I don't even know what that number is and I'm embarrassed to tell you that as well. Bobbleheads, or nodders, are an old school toy that have become a very popular collectible in that they were toys before people came up with the idea of keeping every trinket ever made and turning it into a collectible. There has been a resurgence in their popularity since the San Francisco Giants gave away a Willie Mays bobblehead back in 1999. Now not only does every sports team in every league at every level do them, but they're available for movie and comic book characters, corporate mascots and even personalized keepsakes for average, ordinary folks. Believe it or not, and most people don't, I didn't plan on amassing a huge stockpile of these crazy things. Sure, I liked them and had a couple. What wound up happening was people would see them and assume I was a collector and they'd give them to me as gifts. I think I've only ever paid for two or three of them. The rest were all presents. So now I have a ton of the crazy things. Here are some of my favorites...
One thing people always say is how a bobblehead looks nothing like what it's supposed to represent. I don't think the bobblehead people are even trying for a Madame Tussauds level of accuracy in their portrayal so I don't know why people think it's necessary to point that out. But some of them come pretty close and since it's something that is always pointed out, I'm including pictures of the subjects so you can decide for yourself.
This is one of the few I bought. I like old time, retro baseball stuff and I grew up liking the Cincinnati Reds because Pete Rose was my favorite player. And I like non-human mascots (I also bought a Detroit Tiger that's a...well, a tiger) and you can't get much more non-human than having a huge baseball for a head. If anybody is looking to get me a gift, I'd love to have a bobblehead of Mr. Met, who is probably this guy's cousin if not brother.
Resemblance: I gotta give this one a solid A. Different uniform but check out that 'stache.

This is former Rays outfielder Jason Tyner and this bobblehead is semi-legendary. The short version of the story is the Rays were all set to honor Tyner with a giveaway of this bobblehead in 2002, but he was sent to the minors before the night rolled around so the promotion was postponed and never re-scheduled while Tyner was a member of the organization. He has since had some success with the Minnesota Twins but very few of his Rays bobbleheads ever got their moment of glory. I wish I could tell you how I got mine but I can't. Somebody almost got in trouble for it then and could get in trouble all over again now. So, sorry.
Resemblance: Well done. B+.

In 2003, they had artists do giant bobbleheads for each major league franchise and scattered them around the city of Chicago to promote the all star game. They also did miniature versions for collectors and this is one of those. I think this is what might have happened if the Rays had been around in 1967 and commissioned the Beatles to design their uniforms.
Resemblance: I take it back. It doesn't look like anything I've ever seen. F. But I still like it.

I have a soft spot for Josh Hamilton. So sue me. I pulled for him to make it to the big leagues with the Rays and I pull for him even more now, even though this bobblehead (and a handful of baseball cards) is as close as that ever came to happening. This was actually a giveaway item done by the Durham Bulls, the Rays AAA affiliate.
Resemblance: No tats, and the ears don't really stick out the right way, but the face is dead on. A-

Of course, this is Dwight Schrute of NBC's "The Office". This bobblehead (well, not this exact one) has been featured prominently on the show. You can get them from the NBC store, in person in New York or online. Mine was a gift from a good friend who enjoys the show as much as I do.
Resemblance: C-. It looks like him but doesn't look like him, but I think that's intentional. This looks more like Dwight as a cartoon. They now make bobbleheads of almost all the characters on the show and Dwight's looks the least like the character it's supposed to represent.
Rainn Wilson could probably sue somebody but I'll bet he thinks it's funny.

This is former Tampa Tarpons general manager, minor league baseball czar and all-around legend that too few people have ever heard of, Mike Moore. If you remember how minor league baseball became huge in the 1990s (and if you don't, trust me, it did), then you should take note that Mike was the president of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues during that time. Oh yeah, he was also the best man at my wedding in 1988. And I have his bobblehead on my tv set. Yeah, you're right, that is a little weird.
Resemblance: That's pretty damn good. Especially the sneakers. A+

When I worked in sports, I worked on a few events with the Gramatica Family Foundation, including PA announcing at a couple of celebrity soccer outings. One day, Martin and his brothers were in my office and they noticed the bobbleheads on the shelf. Martin, who was the placekicker for the Buccaneers at the time said, "All those bobbleheads and you don't have any kickers?" I laughed and said, "They don't make bobbleheads for kickers." I think I actually sneered when I said "kickers". One day a few weeks later, I showed up for work and this autographed Martin Gramatica bobblehead was sitting on my desk.
Resemblance: Weak. D. Hair isn't dark or curly enough and the eyes are too beady and far apart. It's a kicker though, so nobody will notice...until the game is on the line.

This is former Tampa Tarpons manager Marc Bombard, or Bombie (bom-bee). We used to sling beer at the Florida State Fair together, a gig lined up by Mike Moore (see above). Bombie introduced me to my boyhood hero Pete Rose and to my beloved barber shop in West Tampa over 20 years ago.
Resemblance: Hmm, C+. I'd grade it higher if it's lower lip was packed with 'dip' and it was swearing.

Longtime Detroit Tigers announcer Ernie Harwell was at one of Mike Veeck's marketing seminars a few years ago and I was working it as an intern. That's where I got this one and Ernie signed it: Ernie is one of those announcers that has been associated with his team for so long that for fans, he's actually a major part of that team's identity. Think of Harry Carey, only without having to be drunk to be entertaining. Can't visualize that? Me neither.

Resemblance: That's really, really good. Right down to the cap. A+

I like this one of Manny Sanguillen because I like catchers and wearing the shinguards in the on-deck circle is a childhood memory. Plus, I dig the retro '70s era uniform. A friend of mine who works Pirates spring training in Bradenton got me this one.
Resemblance: Not bad, not bad at all. B+. A gap in the teeth would have pushed it to an A-.

I'm a student of Negro league baseball so I love this bobblehead of Josh Gibson. Those who saw him play say he was the best player in the history of the Negro Leagues. Those who saw him and babe Ruth play say he was better than Ruth. This is another one from buddy with the Pirates connection.
Resemblance: I'm not sure the real Gibson was that...svelte. Sure the uniforms were baggier back then but every picture I've ever seen of Gibson makes him look like a really big, hulking dude. I'll give this a C+.

This is the crown jewel of my collection. Why? Well, for one thing, it's a double wobble bobble; the head bobbles and so does the torso! But the main reason is because it is the only one of it's kind on earth. This is actually a prototype for a giveaway the Devil Rays did...but the finished product had the cap on backwards. This is the only one in the whole wide world with the cap on frontwards. And somewhere out there in the whole wide world is a former mascot who would be seriously pissed off if he knew I had this. However, that same former mascot never reimbursed me for $40 worth of Gatorade I bought when I was his official bodyguard. So we're even.
Resemblance: Perfect, except for the position of the cap. is that a flaw? I think not. A+.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Has this ever happened to you?

You're at the grocery store and someone catches your eye. "Wow, she's attractive", you think. Not like she's-out-of-your-league-because-she's-fashion-model-gorgeous-and-therefor-out-of-everybody's-league, just...nice looking. As in, she looks nice and she looks like she is nice. She isn't laughing but you can easily picture her laughing because she probably laughs often and looks great doing so. That kind of nice. You consider talking to her. Just go up and say something funny about groceries. But that would be weird. That would be stupid. Dumb idea. So you don't say anything and get in your car and head to the gas station, a little aggravated at yourself for not saying anything because nothing ventured, nothing gained. Right?
Then as you're pumping your gas, you see her pull in to the gas station. "Well, now that's interesting", you think. She must live in the neighborhood. That makes you neighbors. Nothing wrong with striking up a conversation with a neighbor. That's the most normal thing to do in the world. There should be more of that kind of interaction between people. It would make the world a better place, doncha think? Howdy neighbor! It would be interesting to get her thoughts on the subject. But it looks like she just paid for whatever she bought inside and is getting back in her car. Now you'd have to go all the way over there, say "excuse me" and stop her from driving off and now it's a whole strange...thing. And who needs that? So you finish pumping your gas and head over to browse the magazines at your local bookstore.
When you walk in, you see her again, right there, reading magazines. Regardless of how you feel about destiny, you figure this is some kind of sign. Something in the universe is telling you that you're supposed to talk to her. If nothing else, you have to at least comment on how bizarre the whole situation is. What are the odds of running into the same person three times in a row in three different places? Apparently, 100%! You're good at observational humor. She'd probably appreciate your humorous take on this whole thing. You approach and say, "Hi. I saw you at the grocery store, the gas station and now here at the bookstore and I think..." and she backs up and says, loud enough for other people to hear, "oh my god, are you following me?". Technically, yeah, you are...but it's not going to help anything by saying, "as a matter of fact, yes I am". So instead you say, "I'm sorry, I thought you were someone else" and you turn around and get the hell out of there, thinking that at least one person is going to write down your license plate number.

No? Me too. I mean, me neither. That's crazy! I know, right? Ha ha! How just...just crazy would something like that be if it actually happened to somebody in real life.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Dancing With The Original Hooters Girl

She didn't cook the food, but Lynne Austin is The Original Hooters Girl. Since the day she forever made it impossible for me to wear orange satin shorts and a tank top in public, the bay area native and avid sports fan has created a career out of being herself. She's appeared on "Married With Children", and hosted television and radio shows. And you may have seen her in a little magazine called Playboy (perhaps you've heard of it? Great articles. I recommend you check it out.) And now the crowning achievement of her career, THIS BLOG! She's currently working very hard, preparing to compete in "Dancing With the Stars Tampa Bay 2009", which benefits Heartbeat International and takes place Saturday, September 26th at 6:00PM at the Marriott Waterside in downtown Tampa. My fellow Rays die-hard fanatic took time out from a grueling rehearsal schedule to chitty chat...

ME (my blog, I get to be in bold and italics): How did you first get involved with Heartbeat International?
HER: I got involved with Heartbeat International through Julie Weintraub of Gold and Diamond Source. I've known her husband Steve for 20 years. I've been lucky enough to receive some beautiful things from Gold and Diamond Source over the years! Anywhoo, Julie asked me to dance. The charity is in affiliation with St Jude's and they provide pacemakers to children around the world that would otherwise die.

ME: Were you much of a dancer before getting involved with this?
HER: Could I dance before I set foot in Fred Astaire? dance...sure...I could get my groove on. Ballroom dance? Ha! I had maybe seen one episode of the real "Dancing With The Stars"! I had no idea how to tell a swing from a samba. During my first meeting with the director of Fred Astaire, a sweet dude named Fletcher, I tried to back out. I realized I was out over my skiis. He was very positive that I could do it, so I tried. And tried. And tried. My first lesson was August 10th, for an hour. It was like this: "Lynne, swing works on a triple step count", and away we went. Brighthouse Cable taped a few lessons and mine was a bleeped filled hour of frustration as my left foot and my other left foot decided to not play in the sandbox together. After four lessons, my partner Joe, quit. They swear it wasn't my fault. Next saint up was Orlando Pagan, a professional in the true sense. Thursday was my 12th lesson with Orlando. We dance two to three hours per lesson. For the past three weeks, it has been almost daily. My last lesson is today (Friday) and the event is tomorrow (Saturday). You can vote for us online at Please!

ME: What happens when you walk into a Hooters? Does special Lynne Austin theme music play? Do people bow?
HER: Well darlin', I was the very first Hooters girl ever hired. Thus "The Original" tag that follows me. That was 26 years ago this October 4th. If we do that math (easy big fella) that would mean some of these women were not even a zygote when I opened the stores. Sooooo, nah, no theme music. Some waitress have no clue I am their personal goddess. Which just pisses me off. I mean jeez, you'd think I could milk this whole boob thing (no pun :) for at least 30 years, yes?

ME: Why have you stayed in Clearwater?
HER: I've done so much in the past 26 years as Hooters billboard girl/waitress/marketing/radio talk hostess. Playboy kept me busy for about five years. The rest of it has been a mosaic of some of the most interesting, amazing, weird-ass things ever. And I wouldn't trade one second of it. I tried my hand at Hollywood, did a few episodes of "Married With Children", two times on "Star Search" and countless modeling jobs. But, the hometown just couldn't be removed from the girl. I came back after a month, happy to be a small fish in a small pond.

ME: My understanding is once you've been a Playboy centerfold, you have Hef on speed dial and can show up at the Playboy Mansion whenever you want. True?
HER: Contrary to popular belief, no, Hef isn't on my speed dial. But, "once a Playmate, always a Playmate" so I am still welcome, with a submitted request and a valid reason, to the Mansion in Holmby Hills California. It really is an awesome place. Kind of like a nakey museum.

ME: Any new projects coming up?
HER: My current passion along with raising four kidlets, is my Rays. Followed chronically for about the last four years. '08 was magical for us homers, '09 was frustrating and heartbreaking as the spell was broken with injuries and 'pen problems. I have no doubt '10 will be fun to watch as we see our farm system prove its one of the best in MLB.

ME: Anything else?
HER: As I get nearer to having yet another great experience tattoo-ed on my soul, Dancing with the Stars Tampa Bay, has been a mixed bag of awesome. Thank you to all my friends on Twitter that have cheered me on and listened to me bitch and whine. I will miss having something to learn everyday. I don't expect to win...unless...we can somehow pull off a Tanya Harding part deux. ;)
ME: I am totally available to serve as a Jeff Gilooly in waiting.

Dancing With The Stars Tampa Bay takes place on Saturday, September 26th at the Marriott Waterside hotel in downtown Tampa. Cocktail hour begins at 6:00PM. Tickets are available by calling Heartbeat International at 813.259.1213.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hot Dogs!!

"Our Patty loves to rock and roll,
A hot dog makes her lose control --"
--The Patty Duke Show

Heaven knows Patty isn't alone. I've written about the appeal that hot dogs hold before so I'm not going to cover that ground again. Although I remain amazed that the nutritional equivalent of unfiltered cigarettes, which we all know are made by taking the floor sweepings of a slaughterhouse and packing it like one would a snowball into the shape of a phallus, is not only legal in America but downright beloved.
Of course, it's entirely possible that price is a factor:
Eight jumbo dogs for .79? That's at least four meals worth of hot dogs for less than a dollar. Hard to pass up a deal like that. Of course, when the main ingredient of a sandwich costs less than the bread it's served on, that should raise a flag or two, shouldn't it?
Yep. We've been warned. And we don't care.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Howard Beale and his half of a great idea

As seen on Soul Pancake:

Brilliant speech, although sadly topical more than 3o years later. Problem is, we seem to have missed, or chosen to ignore, the part where he says "Then we'll figure out what to do". See, as profound as this speech is, it was supposed to be step one, a means to an end, not a solution in itself. In spite of everything, I remain (somewhat) hopeful that we'll figure that out eventually.

Mad As Hell! Kinetic Typography from Aaron Leming on Vimeo.

I'm posting this on the day of a scheduled memorial service for a former co-worker, Tom Johannesen, who was the victim of an utterly senseless murder (I know, it's not like there's any other kind, but geez), a service I unfortunately can not attend due to a scheduling conflict, but my thoughts are with his friends and family.

A short conversation in Hollywood

"Oh! Hi! How's it going."

"Hello. Good, good! Nice to see you. You look like you're in a hurry."

"Well, yes actually. Ha ha! I have a Visa commercial this morning and then I have another documentary and I've got to find some time somewhere to work on a video game."

"They do keep you hopping, don't they?"

"Ha ha! They sure do. You should know!"

"Yes. Yes, I should. If anybody should know, it would be me. For a very long, long time."

"Listen, I was going to call you. See how you're doing..."

"Me? I'm fine. I'm better than fine. You don't have to worry about me."

"No, no, I wasn't worried. I just wanted to--you know, I thought I should..."

"Listen, I know what you're getting at and it's fine. Really. There's no problem between us."

"Really? I'm so glad to hear you say that because..."

"After all, we have a common bond in that we both portrayed characters in the 'Star Wars' saga."


"Granted, my character was the center of the entire story and has evolved into a true cultural icon. But your character was an important part of moving the story along."

"I wasn't in--I think you might be thinking of Samuel L. Jackson. That wasn't me."

"Oh. So only one of us was in 'Star Wars'?"

"Yes. Correct."

"Yeah, well, remember that."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"Think about somebody else for once!"

Speaking of award winners...

Where would you go to find The Pastry of the Year? Ladurée in Paris? Citizen Cake in San Francisco? The French Culinary Institute in...New York City? Not if you have a brain in that over sized Pez dispenser you call a head. No, you're going to want to pop .95 into your nearest coin op vending machine, push C6 and get yourself a Big Texas Cinnamon Roll (unless of course, C6 is Funnyons or some lame cheese danish or something else that isn't the Big Texas Cinnamon Roll). The gold seal printed right on the cellophane package tells you so. That award is presented by the fine folks at Automatic Merchandiser, which is a magazine that covers the vending industry and not an '80s cover band, and it is the highest honor you can achieve if you're a practitioner of the items purchased almost exclusively with coins and dispensed via an automated rotating coil culinary arts.
Now, you may be wondering whether or not the Big Texas is, you know, any good. Maybe because normally you're not a big fan of food that comes wrapped in cellophane, except in this case that thin wrapping is the only thing covering food that lands with a thud in a big communal metal bin that is constantly being probed by all manner of greasy, grubby little fingers seeking salty, sticky snacks, in which case, hurray for cellophane! I hear ya. That's not an invalid concern. So let's pop that wrapper off and take a look...


Mmm, looks pretty good to me. You can clearly see thick spiraled ribbons of cinnamon covered with a nice, thorough drizzle of icing. I think if you had a microwave and one of those individual servings of Country Crock spread, maybe a cup of coffee, you've got yourself a mighty fine breakfast here!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Somewhere, Salvador E. Luria is weeping

Since we're not going into space that much anymore and there's no profit in curing diseases, you might think there's nothing for scientists to do. Well, you'd be dead wr....actually, you might be right.
Students at MIT have completed an as-yet unpublished study that concludes that homosexual men have proportionally more gay friends than straight men. Everybody knows I'm not smart enough to go to college, but maybe it's just that I don't have cajones big enough to emerge from a long drunken weekend staring at Facebook and announce that I've completed a study. Start packing for Stockholm, guys; I smell Nobel!
When you get back, I look forward to your research that determines once and for all that chocolate is delicious and people enjoy video games.

Emmy wrap-up

I stayed up and watched this last night. Not sure why, I don't really care about awards shows that much. I think it's because I didn't have to go to bed early and I can't stand the Dallas Cowboys and not much else was on. Anyway, I watched it, and I have to say it was pretty good. Here are some observations:
  • Neil Patrick Harris was the host and he's funny. Maybe I should watch that sitcom he's on.
  • Ken Howard won an award for something I didn't see. As far as I'm concerned, he will always be "The White Shadow", so in my mind, he won for that. I loved that show in high school! I know he's done other stuff. I remember he played Micheal Scott's former boss on "The Office". I thought it was odd that Micheal Scott's former boss used to be a high school basketball coach that played in the NBA.
  • Justin Timberlake wore glasses. I was going to write a whole post ripping him for that, but celebrities wearing glasses as an affectation isn't something new. Plus, even though I don't care for his music, he's a funny guy and doesn't seem to take himself too seriously, so, hey, free pass.
  • Rarely have I felt like more of a nerd than when they were listing the nominees for Outstanding Writing For A Variety, Music Or Comedy Series and I was torn between rooting for "Saturday Night Live" because I like Simon Rich and "Late Night" because I like Kevin Dorff and then being bummed because neither of them won ("The Daily Show" did).
  • In general, all the acceptance speeches by the writers were more entertaining than any of the speeches from actors. Something about them being a little awkward and geeky, at least when compared to those who are supposed to be comfortable in front of cameras and an audience, was kind of endearing.
  • For the first time ever, I was at least familiar with every single name they honored during the "In Memoriam" segment. Usually there are a few "who's that?"s but not this time. I wonder if that means I'm getting old or if there have just been so many high-profile celebrity deaths this year. I'm going to go with the latter.
  • I like John Hodgman and appreciated his surreal commentary on the winners (re: Hugh Jackman on the Oscars: “This was the first time a musical number was written for a wolverine”).
  • I know some people were upset that the Justin Timberlake & Andy Samberg short "Motherlovers" didn't win anything, but not me. Sorry, "Dick In A Box" was better.
  • I like that Bryan Cranston won for "Breaking Bad", but disappointed the show didn't win Best Drama. I don't watch "Mad Men" (but I probably should) and don't have any premium cable channels like HBO, so to me, it's the best thing on, hands-down. Cranston is brilliant in it, and I couldn't stand him on "Malcolm In The Middle".
  • Ricky Gervais and Bob Newhart were both on and they were both hilarious.
  • Overall, it's the first awards show I've watched in a long time where I didn't want my money back when it was over.

Friday, September 18, 2009

The Sunny also rises

My favorite show "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" kicked off its 5th season last night. If you're not famaliar with it, it's a sitcom that follows the misadventures of five of the most self-centered, greedy, immature, dishonest, ignorant and just completely immoral characters ever found on television.
I LOVE it!
I've been hooked ever since it came on and I look forward to its return every year the way I used to look forward to Christmas when I was a child. It seems to get a little more popular each year and this year there was actually a watch party at a local bar (which is perfect, because much of the action on the show takes place in the bar that the characters own), the Karma Bar & Cafe (the fact that it's called Karma is also perfect because the characters on the show always pay for their bad behavior).
I had to work until 10, which is what time the show starts, but the bar was only a couple of blocks from where I work. The 23-Year-Old and her sister The 21-Year-Old got there early and saved seats. There was a trivia contest with a grand prize of a $25 bar tab. If I had been there, I'd have won it. Instead, I had The 23-Year-Old texting me under the table for the answers:
"Who joined the cast in the 2nd season?"
Are you kidding me? "Danny DeVito"
"What was Sweet Dee's nickname in high school?"
Good gawd, how does she not know that?!? "The Aluminum Monster"
"Is it McBoyle or McFoil?"
Auuugh!! "McPoyle! P! Poyle! McPoyle!!"
I tried calling her on the phone, convinced she was butchering it. I fully expected her to text "What's the name of the city where the show take place?". She didn't pick up and texted back "Stop trying to call. You're going to get me disqualified." A few minutes later she texted, "I WON" and then "If you get here in time, you can have a beer on my tab." Uh, excuse me? Your tab? The tab you had no chance in hell of winning without my input? That tab? Yeah, I think I'll be having as many beers as I want on my tab, thank you very much.
Anyway, I only missed about 5 minutes of the show (which I will watch as soon as I'm done typing this) and the fact that we cheated to win a bar tab at a place named Karma made it a perfect "It's Always Sunny..." evening.

The 23-Year-Old displays the ill-gotten loot, with editorial comment from The 21-Year-Old.

The crowd at Karma, using a commercial break to deconstruct all the intricate relationships between Frank, Sweet Dee, Charlie, Mac and Dennis.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Award, Schmaward

Sure, I may not have won this year's Best of the Bay Award from Creative Loafing, but I think I learned an important lesson that's just as valuable: I hate not winning awards.
No biggie. In a way, I'm glad I lost. That's right. For one thing, the pressure is off. No award = no award wining content. So who's the real loser here? Let's all think about that for another year, shall we? In the meantime, here are some pictures from last night's party..
There it is, the official announcement. Congrats to, Sticks of Fire and Artsqueeze. I guess. Whatever. It's not like I even care.

So many awards, so few with my name on them. Can I at least get a bite of that sandwich then? No? Damn it!

Crowd gathered around the stage to hear who won (hint: not me).

Me and best local singer/songwriter winner, the amazing Rebekah Pulley. Those who don't win take photos with winners. Rebekah is so gracious I didn't even have to pay her.

Leaving something behind at the Creative Loafing cards. Hey, it's better than an upper decker!

  • All kidding aside, it really was a great event. Thank you to Creative Loafing for hosting and presenting and for this juicy little shout-out, which was really nice.
  • Thank you to my beloved sisters, the camera-shy K and R for going with me. It's impossible to measure how much their support has meant to me over all these years (we first met in the '40s). So while they think they were there last night because of me, the reality is that I was there because of them.
  • Lastly and most importantly thank you to everyone who takes time out of their real lives to visit this site and who think enough of it to actually cast votes for it in a popularity contest. That absolutely blows me away and flatters me so much that I can't even express it. I wish I could; I'd write a blog post about it. In lieu of that, I humbly offer more jokes about bad behavior and food in the future. Deal?
  • I love all y'all right now!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Going, going, gone...

Like many Americans, I am concerned with good health and am actively interested in shedding some pounds...just as long as it isn't difficult and I can reap the benefits almost instantly. Oddly enough, my search for a method that meets that simple and reasonable criteria has not yielded results from any traditional outlets. Thank goodness for businesses that advertise via yard signs! Just when you feel defeated by life, you're ready to give up and your shoulders are slumped and you're looking down, that's exactly where you'll find a colorful piece of cardboard or corrugated plastic on a stick shoved into the ground.

Two sizes in ten minutes? That's about as close to instant as you can expect. I have no idea how that would work. I'm pretty sure I don't have enough material in my system to poop out that would bring me down two sizes without throwing in a couple of organs. But what am I, a scientist? No. No, I am not. Get outta my way, I got some dialin' to do!

Hold the phone, Louise! This science is developing at lightning speed! Two days after I saw the first sign, I saw this one. Three sizes in ten minutes! I'm positive that not only would you be able to see that change, you'd have to be able to hear it too. Well, in that case I should wait a few days and see what transpires next. I got two sizes...make it three...I got three sizes, anyone wanna make it four? I think I'm going to hold off until I see a sign that says it can make me the size of a circus midget in thirty seconds.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Much ado about Kanye

I wish I was more upset about the Kanye West/Taylor Swift incident at the MTV Video Music Awards last night. Because I don't like Kanye West and this would be some sweet, juicy justification...but I'm not.
For one thing, I'm still trying to wrap my head around why MTV is hosting an awards show for music videos when everybody knows MTV hasn't shown videos since Billy Idol had a top ten hit. At this point, to give out awards for music videos on MTV is kind of like doing the Heisman Trophy presentation on the Weather Channel.

In case you missed it, and I don't know how that would be possible, here's the video:

Basically, what happened was it was decided via some sort of democratic process to give Taylor Swift an award. Kanye West disagreed with that decision and chose to let everyone know about it by disrupting the proceedings to object. Loudly.
That kind of thing sound familiar to anyone? Better question, does that kind of thing sound unusual to anyone?
Sure, it was Taylor Swift's moment and she had the spotlight, but Kanye wanted it, so he took it. Of course it was a dick move, but unless something dramatic has changed in the last 48 hours, I thought we just weren't doing the whole civility thing any more. When I look around at the world I live in, I see a place where we scream at each other instead of talking, we cut each other off in traffic, we shoot each other over stupid shit, our congressmen think it's okay to heckle the president, our athletes think it's okay to threaten to kill an official if they don't like a call and we can't even sit in a room together and discuss something as serious as our own health and welfare without routinely throwing words like "nazi" and "racist" at each other. Hell, we're not above killing each other in the pursuit of Christmas presents (speaking of that, do you think right about now those people are worrying that they might have set the bar a little too high for themselves last year? After all, once you've taken a human life or two in the spirit of giving, merely showing up with "The Beatles: Rock Band" isn't going to cut it).

That's the reality of the world we live in, isn't it? I thought Kanye was just "being real". He even said so himself in his all-caps (how perfectly appropriately inappropriate!) "apology" to Taylor Swift last night: "...WELCOME TO THE REAL WORLD!!!! EVERYBODY WANNA BOOOOO ME BUT I’M A FAN OF REAL POP CULTURE!!! NO DISRESPECT BUT WE WATCHIN' THE SHOW AT THE CRIB RIGHT NOW CAUSE … WELL YOU KNOW!!!! I'M STILL HAPPY FOR TAYLOR!!!! BOOOYAAAWWWW!!!! YOU ARE VERY VERY TALENTED!!! I GAVE MY AWARDS TO OUTKAST WHEN THEY DESERVED IT OVER ME… THAT’S WHAT IT IS!!!!!!! I'M NOT CRAZY YALL, I'M JUST REAL. SORRY FOR THAT!!! I REALLY FEEL BAD FOR TAYLOR AND I’M SINCERELY SORRY!!! MUCH RESPECT!!!!!"

So listen, if it's now suddenly in style for behavior like this to bother us again, like I guess it did in the '40s or '50s or something, please let me know. That way I can use this as fuel to generate some real rage instead of merely shrugging my shoulders and rolling my eyes...again.

I'll never grow up either

I got a chance to meet Peter Pan the other night! The real Peter Pan? Well, he's a real guy (his legal name is Randy Constan) who chooses to live as Peter Pan. As far as I know there isn't another, so, yeah. He lives right here in Tampa but I'd never met him before. You may have seen him on tv (he's been on Kimmel and Conan among other shows) or visited his web site or maybe you're seeing him for the first time right here. You will undoubtedly form an opinion about him. You may already have done so. That's fine, that's human nature and it's your right. Just for the record, as far as I'm concerned, an individual expressing themselves and doing their thing, regardless of how far outside the mainstream that thing might be (as long as it isn't harming others, of course) is kind of how I define The American Dream. I love people like this and I'm thankful I live in a country where they can exist and I can interact with them.


That said, I'm not going to pass up the opportunity to make fun. I'm sorry, I'm just not that comfortable up on the high road. So here does...
I'm not going to talk about the tights.
I'm not going to talk about the fairy fixation.
I'm not going to talk about the androgyny.
I'm going to talk about the hair.
Dude. What is up with the hair? You can't walk around in public with a bowl cut like that without somebody like me making fun of it. In fact, that might be the most astounding bowl cut in the long, esteemed history of bowl cuts. Consider the historic predecessors...

Prince Valiant

Davey Jones of the Monkees

Tootie from "The Facts Of Life"

The Beatles

Dorothy Hammill

Pete Rose

Some anonymous doofus. Cripes! Seriously, who the hell is this clown?