SMOKING CIGARETTES AND WATCHING CAPTAIN KANGAROO
Whoa Nellie! Help me Rhonda! As good as a Publix Deli Deluxe Italian Sub, with extra onions and hot peppers is, and they are good, please don’t eat one right before bedtime. You might find yourself suddenly awakened by abdominal noises at 3:00 A.M. and find yourself writing something as bad as this after chugging Pepto Bismol, Alka Seltzer and chewing Tums like a baseball manager devours Red Man. Going back to sleep is not a possibility. In my pained state, I have realized that I have a couple of things in common with our friend Russ, which I will explain later and also reached the conclusion that whatever I write will be disjointed and not unlike some of Mr. Lemmon’s ramblings. If I ever start a column called “Newport News”, you all have permission to hunt me down and shoot me repeatedly and without mercy. Torture is optional.
While I am typing here, I am watching my DVR version of last week’s “24” which I watched during its initial broadcast last Monday. Getting prepped for tonight assuming I can stay awake that long after a night of no sleep and a work day I cannot yet envision. To those of you who follow the series, Jack Bauer uttered the most awesome line in the history of the show in last week’s episode. The line is:
“With all due respect Madame President, ask around.”
This was so awesome that it was followed by about ten seconds of silence and a slow pan of the intended listeners who were showing their looks of awe. It is so cool that I expect to see it on t-shirts. If you are not a fan of “24”, now is not a good time to start watching. Start with the first season from Netflix. Jack Bauer is one tough little mofo.
Since I am sharing media experiences, I’ll share my thoughts on a couple of books and movies. “Milk” will probably win the Oscar for best picture since it is about gay rights and most of the voters are honked about that California proposition 8 thing. If it wins, it sure won’t be because it was the best picture (in my opinion). Denise Harvey has probably already ordered an advance copy of “The Reader”. Of the movies nominated, I would probably vote for “Slumdog Millionaire”. We watched “Wall-E” last week. This is a movie that I was prepared not to like but I will be buying the DVD just so I can listen to the director’s commentary. This is a wonderful movie. Watch it, buy it, get the shirt. I am still a little chapped that my man, Clint Eastwood, didn’t get any type of academy recognition for “Gran Torino”. Guess it wasn’t gay enough for the Prop 8 crowd.
John Grisham is an old college chum of my brother, Biff. They went to Ole Miss together and I may have actually met the guy. I have read most of his books and his new one, “The Associate” was put in the been there, done that, stack last week. This has the makings of a very good story but it has one of those “they all got run over by a truck” conclusions that I learned in a creative writing course in college. It was a standing joke in school that sometimes you write in so many directions with a plot so complex that it can’t be tied together for a coherent ending. The easy way out was to end the story with something like; “The next morning, as they walked across the busy highway for a cup of coffee, they all got run over by a truck.” The End.
Grisham has a tendency to run away from his story by ignoring the extensive plot he has created and having his protagonist just quit the law, become a teacher, move back home, whatever. Usually his movies end with the lead character getting on an airplane, driving down the interstate with all of his belongings in his car, leaving his past (and the plot) behind. Otherwise, I really enjoyed the book. I am also reading Dr. Denis Leary’s tome entitled “Why We Suck”, in which Denis answers a lot of questions that he had answered previously in some of his comedy routines. He is just not that funny in print.
A note to Viv. The dating scene will never be as bad for you as it will be for Nadya Suleman a.k.a. “Octomom”. What’s the deal with this chick? 14 kids. 8 in the past month. She’s unemployed, on welfare, lives with her parents and has 14 freaking kids! I don’t see a line of gentleman callers waiting at her door and it really doesn’t matter how much she thinks she looks like Angelina Jolie. She hired a PR firm, but they have dumped her. I see a lot of dumping in her future.
Now to Russ. Does anyone believe for a second that Mr. Lemmon went to a high school basketball game. Not me. And why so sad Russ? “Don’t Haze Me Bro” is kind of funny in a school spirit game rivalry kind of way. And wasn’t it Russ that kind of wrote off the Sebastian incidents last year as a “boys will be boys” kind of thing? I do believe that Russ was hanging out at Walmart and is capable of frightening parents of a small child. Take a look at the photo Russ chooses to publish along with his now constant drops. It’s kind of a face down, eyes up slant with a goofy grin. Those of us in the business call that look a “leer”. Leers, by their very nature, are spooky. If he gave the little girl his column photo look, I can understand the mom being upset. How did he know she was two years old? Checking i.d.’s in the checkout line now Russ? The print edition had a bizarre headline which has already been recycled in the Newport blue bin but it went something like “Don’t Talk To Strangers Baby, Don’t Talk . . . “. Russ, do what Lauri Goldstein did and get some new photos taken. Be a man and look at the camera. If we want to see leers, we’ll head to the FDLE website.
But it upsets me to see Russ so sad, so I found a couple of things we have in common. Last week on US1 south of Vero, I saw a black SUV with an Alaska license plate. Now this has to be close to the Holy Grail for out-of-state tag counters. In fact, in an effort to attempt to cheer Russ up a bit, I was thinking about taking out my iPhone, taking a picture of the plate and then email it to him. Upon realizing that I was driving at about 50 miles per hour, taking a picture didn’t seem like such a great way to destroy my car and see if my airbags worked. Hoping for a chance at a shot at a red light, I took out my phone. Unfortunately for me, Mr. Alaska hung a right when I needed to proceed south. But I do have a new hobby. What is it? Counting out-of-state license plates. How many have I counted so far this year? One. I’ll keep you posted on how this hobby pans out.
Yesterday Russ wrote about having eaten at 124 Bob Evans restaurants. A few years ago, I ate breakfast at a Bob Evans in Orlando. The food was good. The service excellent and the hospitality almost Southern. How many Bob Evans restaurants have I eaten in? One. I’ll let you know of any changes. See? Russ and I have quite a bit in common.
This is my “they all got run over by a truck moment”. Take note of my sandwich advice and maybe you will never be in this unpleasant situation. If you see me today, just say “nice suit” because the rest of me is going to look pretty darn bad. I’m off to Walgreens to get a six pack of Pepto.
I do hope my fellow beachers have a great week and please be careful when crossing the streets. There are a lot of trucks out there.