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What’s Black & White and Red All Over?

July 3, 2007 Leave a comment

Isaiah Washington, deposed actor from Grey’s Anatomy, is not happy. He’s been fired from a hit show. That in itself is a bad break, loss of income & a solid credit on the clip reel. However, that’s the least of his upset because he’s experiencing what Don Imus did; a powerful interest group of people wielding their power in a self righteous hissy. Mr. Washington claims this has happened solely because he is black.

He stands accused of hurling anti-gay epithets during an on set argument with colleague Patrick Dempsey, who was purportedly defending fellow cast member T.R. Knight from Washington’s tirade. Not long after this event took place, Mr. Knight went on record and revealed he lives an alternative lifestyle. While that still takes courage, it’s hardly unique in the show business.

The word in question is the other F-word, which much like the N-word, is acceptable if used by gay people but not by heteros who lose their temper & aren’t calculating every single word they might let slip. Again, I say this: I’ve been called that word and I’m not one. Hmmm which is worse? Next time I swear I will call the Gay mafia—and I mean it.

Nobody likes being on the receiving end of an angry pejorative. But sometimes it’s reactionary & solipsistic to think that’s all the angry person is capable of thinking. My case would be, most times, an angry person is not thinking rationally. It’s an emotional outburst kids, not a political statement. It’s an imbalance moment in a world pretty much un-balanced since Nemo got beached and somehow ( see C. Darwin ) survived, thrived, then grew legs & multiplied.

Mr. Imus wasn’t angry, he was just doing what he did for 40 years & somebody decided this was the right time to put a period to one final nasty one-liner. I just watched an animated movie Happy Feet, in which an old Stevie Wonder song I Wish, was utilized twice on the soundtrack. A phrase from that song ” nappy headed boy, “ was sung and ostensibly heard by millions of people, many of whom are children & I’m guessing also black. Did any of them ask: ‘ hey mom, is that the song Imus sings? ‘ and why is it in a penguin movie? I liked the flick, though Robin Williams voicing 2 characters is 2 too many. But where is the hue & cry? I can’t hear you…….. nor should I expect to either.

OK—maybe Isaiah Washington harbors resentment toward certain types. So what. If he was causing them to not be employed or say, lose their job ( that seems familiar somehow ), then we’ve got a case Clarence Darrow! Sure, if he starts repeating that off cam performance to the detriment of the rest of the cast, then I agree, terminate his contract. I just think it’s a one dimensional judgment against Mr. Washington for possibly asserting himself a bit too belligerently & crudely regarding another actor’s talent. Maybe he did it a lot & that’s why he’s off the show. I admit, I don’t really know, I wasn’t there. If it’s for an ill advised momentary loss of control, it’s bullshit to fire him especially in light of his apologies and studio imposed & supervised sensitivity training.

And while Isaiah has been surgically removed from Grey’s Anatomy, it appears John Donald Imus is now in a bit of a grey area. Due to the complexities of contract & litigation, he may be finding his way back on air. Sources say possibly after Labor Day, when those dedicated followers of fashion say to stop wearing white. These days black & white still make grey more than ever. Not to mention red asses. . ..

Oh yeah Happy 4th! try not to blow any fingers off. . ..

I’m Sorry But So Is Brenda Lee*

June 13, 2007 1 comment

I apologize to those of you who enter search data such as arc d’ Triomphe, which is an historical architectural arch in France, and get a diatribe about Paris Hilton! Or foxy boxing and see just one snotty line about that execrable pursuit. Or something about say, the Boston Red Sox and have to read the truth about them.

AND sorry to fans of Marshall Crenshaw, who recorded a version, and Ben Vaughn, who wrote a terrific song with the above *title. US Copyright Law does not permit copyrights for titles. Providing it’s a unique, original creation, which is in no way intended to cause confusion with another more successful work. This will also explain why I am currently working on a new screenplay called Pirates of the Caribbean: Kiera Knightley Showers Nightly for 3 Hours! It’s an independent production, I sold all my comic books & baseballs cards, with only one goal: spending time with Kiera. I am so over Paris. . ..

Number 1 on Your Hitler Parade

March 30, 2007 Leave a comment

ESPN caught my ear again. The coach of the NY Giants football team, Tom Coughlin, made the mistake of comparing fan opinion of him to Adolf Hitler. This of course, in the current climate, is talk show gold, even on intellectually challenged sports networks.

So, there were Dan Patrick & Keith Olberman, pontificating and pondering the lack of wisdom Coughlin had displayed in using that particular comparison. A comparison which provokes ire amongst even those who have no idea who this Hitler guy is ( was ). They smoothly segued into the actual topic of the segment, the 2007 Major Leage Baseball season, which is why I was tuned in.

Less than a long breath after Hitler chat, Hall of Fame baseball writer, Peter Gammons, was intro-ed by Patrick as the man who once referred to the owner of the New York Yankees as Mao Tse Steinbrenner. Hmmmmmmm. So, let’s see, it’s bad to reference Hitler when one feels hated, after all he was a sociopath. But it’s OK to gloss a German American with a comparison to Mao Tse Tung. I’m guessing this is because Mao for the most part, mostly killed Chinese and/or imprisoned them for having their own thoughts about life.*

The lack of cognition by the majority of humans no longer surprises me. Hey! I’m highly cognitive and I mispeak. I’ve also done it on the radio. We won’t go into that, not because I’m afraid of exposing my own on mic stupidnesses ( please see Recent Posts > ), but because it’s 1) old news 2) I was accurate & 3) Vince & Amy are married now anyhow. BTW Vince’s recent CD is brilliant.

Olberman, who helms a real news program & has a one man vendetta against another newsie, the well known gasbag Bill O’Reilly ( I think it’s an alphabetizing issue ), and is what passes for an intellectual on ESPN. Dan Patrick is , well, Dan Patrick. It’s like pairing Albert Einstein with, well yes, Dan Patrick. Keith phones in for an hour a day, says smart stuff, while Dan, in typical jock sniffer fashion, goofs on him. Then praises him. Then goofs on him some more. This perpetuates the old sports tradition of equating having read a book as earning you the nickname ‘ perfesser.’ If they find out that book has no pictures? they call you a word I can’t use here, because then even I will attract comments!

Back to dictators of the past. Look, everybody is sensitive. We all have hot buttons. Blah blah blah. Words do have power. Not mine, but you know, guys who are NFL coaches. AND guys who ( still ) have radio shows. Still, as a public service, I will provide a few more acceptable comparisons for coaches under fire ( it’s too late for Coughlin & Michael Ray Richardson, I ain’t touching him with a 20 foot Christian Pole!)

If you are a football coach:

‘ fans treat me like OJ Simpson ‘

For a baseball guy:*

‘ fans act as if I’m Barry Bonds ‘* ( Barry should use Jose Canseco unless speaking of himself in the 3rd person )

For basketball:

‘ hey! it’s not like I’m Bobby Knight, ‘

Hockey:

‘ Eh — don’t make me out to be [ insert name of goon du jour here ]’

For those still adamant about using a megalomaniacal mass murdering ruler to match their own unpopularity with: Idi Amin Dada is very in right now. Sorry, Forrest.

*editor’s note: no truth to the rumor Mia Farrow & I are dating. We are just good friends, of people who don’t know each other.

Mouth-odd Acting

March 27, 2007 Leave a comment

I’ve previously mentioned I’ve been criticized. I’ve always been the kind of person who attracts it. When I was a kid, it would happen a lot. Today, I’d like to talk about it some more. . ..

I was 11 and pitching in a Little League game. After one inning, some other kid comes up to me and says: ‘ you stick your tongue out when you pitch.’ Being 11, I immediately became self conscious. I attribute my lack of a Major League baseball career, directly to that moment. This other young feller joined a large group of people whose life was spared because I was a devout pacifist. Also a bit spindly, I admit it.

A few years later, my mouth full of orthodontic appliance, a pal hanging out with me in the school lunchroom, feels free to point out: ‘ you cover your mouth when you laugh.’ I couldn’t win.

Many decades from those treasured memories, I noticed an increasingly creepy trend of young actors using their lips & tongues to emote. I don’t know who started this technique—Stanislipski? Wouldn’t matter, it’s just bad and that’s that. What directors think that works on screen? Is the tongue a phallic symbol when thus employed, especially when done in the company of a hot chick? What do those compressed lips mean? those lolling tongues? AND why? Men–please knock it the fuck off. Women, your comments invited. Thank you.

While I’m at it: those tight frame close ups on TV are so beyond stupid. Do you enjoy that kind of shot? I don’t. Of course, the dialogue in most TV shows is so incredibly insipid, they are probably hoping to distract viewers. ‘ Look Gertie! a giant head! get me a beer.’ AND if one more hack uses the phrase — ‘ Excuse me! ‘ as a reaction line when one character is affronted by another’s question as in ” hey, Morty, WTF are you doing with your tongue?”— I will hunt them down and excuse them with extreme prejudice.

In a related story: does Oprah Winfrey ever take a pic without her mouth wide Open ? You’ll start noticing as of now. The answer will be, hardly ever.

Yes, I am bitter. Obviously, I was ahead of my time, I could’ve been a star. A huge headed, tongue waggling star! #%*@!

Rock the Juke Box

March 23, 2007 Leave a comment

Not too long ago, based on experience & insight fueled by deep thought, I realized I was a jerk. Not an asshole, a jerk & I demand the distinction. Having said that, I want to know why so many assholes get droit de seigneur, while jerks are relegated to, well, jerking. Admittedly, it is tough to get an obvious asshole to admit they are one, let alone allowing equal rights to a jerk.

I am however, an enlightened jerk, having been exposed to ( as opposed to exposing myself to. . . ) many spiritual paths. Many of these paths were traveled in the dark, which is the way to go. See, if one is looking for enlightenment, too much light at the start can only leave you blinded, causing the seeker to miss as many good parts as if they’d remained in darkness. As the great, late 20th Century philospher Bruce Springsteen wrote: ‘ blinded by the light, cut loose like a deuce, another runner in the night. . ..’

Many a dissertation has risen & fallen on that line. Mainly because the Manfred Mann hit version of the song made ‘ deuce ‘ sound as if the word was ‘ douche. ‘ Frankly, I knew it was deuce, and I wasn’t sure if he was talking carburetors or wild cards. I do know I attended a memorial gathering for a friend who was on the flight which exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland in the late 80’s.

It was a sad occasion, though the guy who died was a globe trotter, who once lived in a cave on one of the Hawaiian Islands & was also on the Price is Right as a contestant. He could also burp at will, really loud. We would miss him. Some asshole took this opportunity to marvel in front of a group of people, how much he was amazed I hadn’t killed myself yet. He then proceeded to critique my sweater, telling me it was a knockoff & he had an original. Up to that point I’d been having a fine talk with a really attractive woman, hoping for some shared sadness sex. I eventually figured that was being too much of a jerk at such an event, so I decided to mingle. Wow, talk about instant karma!

Had I been a tougher, albeit creepier guy, I might’ve invited the asshole to a private, more personal mourning session outside. I apologize for not recalling my witty comeback to his style statement, I only know he threatened me & a real friend, stepped in & got me away before I got clocked at a memorial for wearing a copy of an LL Bean item. Oh yeah, and still being alive.

You might guess correctly, I didn’t get the girl. Then, the first chance I got, I donated the sweater to Goodwill, with a note attached— DON’T WEAR TO MEMORIALS! I waited until it was dark & I went for a walk, wrapped up like a douche. It was during that journey I discovered what deuce meant & why I am a jerk NOT an asshole. All those dropping a deuce to honor that asshole will enter the gates of Paradise. Be sure to check off on the membership card before you go in, your preference for female or male virgins. A lot of people forget to do it.

Hey! I’m a helpful jerk.

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