Thursday, January 05, 2006

Thursday Night Fatigue (or No, I'm not Slandering Tonight)

Sorry folks, there's no slander this week.
First of all, my wife is really sick. I'm officially on hair-holding duty. She didn't even get out of bed today, which means she's really sick. I'm overly macho, but my wife is a workaholic. She feels she HAS to go to work. She was going to try, but as she sat up, her stomach told her, "Lie back down, bitch!"
She has estimated her stomach has emptied eight times today. I was at work for three of those.
As such, there wasn't anytime for me to craft my slander. Plus, I wasn't really feeling it this week.
I thought about smacking Pat Robertson around, but
Worm has that covered quite nicely. Still, Pat Robertson: You're an ASS!
This got me thinking though. A colleague of mine is extremely religious. So much so that this person's family does not celebrate Halloween (it's evil, dammit!), but actually dresses up and goes to church celebrates All Saints Day.
I offended this colleague today when I heard this person (I am avoiding the person's sex to tip off who it is) talking about how God is punishing the world, and Revelations is happening now.
Annoyed, I said what I have told anyone who has ever asked me my opinion on the bible.
"Revelations is the only chapter that takes place in the future. It is told by someone more or less anonymous and was written as if it would occur the day after the pen was put down. In my honest opinion (yes, notice I'm still in quotes here), Revelations is nothing more than an acid trip.
Someone bit down on some Wacky Weed or drink the funky Kool-Aid and saw serpents, seven-eyed lambs, etc."
That's right. I think it's all a chemical induced vision. I once got so drunk my cats talked to me. Should I stone them to death now?

If you want to believe in the Bible as a literal piece, that's your business and more power to you. However, if I don't want to, leave me alone. Don't tell me, "You'll burn in Hell." That just makes me want to make more comments about how, oh I don't know, Jesus can't be a blue-eyed white man. Look at his descriptions people. He was born in the middle-east, had nappy (my word, theirs is hair like wool) hair. Face it. NOT A WHITE MAN!
Look, the bottom line is this: Pat Robertson said what he said about Ariel Sharon for publicity. Most people have never heard of Robertson. Most people also can't identify who the 37th President was (uh, who is Nixon, Alex?), which means Robertson has to be controversial to get press. He once said, "Sharon is a good friend." Now he says God no like Ariel.
Press, Press, Press. There's no such thing as bad publicity, right O.J?
I'll leave you with this tonight as I must tend to my wife.
This sight contains the names and samples of music used in commercials. You watched a Pontiac commercial and want the name of the song? It's on this sight.
Go check it out.
I think my next slander piece is going to have to be about WCCO's new set.
I gotta go, I'm being beckoned to hold hair.

Story Time with Uncle Leab: The Girl from Wales

Let's step into the way back machine. It's the summer between my Junior and Senior year. I have been hired by a now defunct theatre company called Actors Renaissance Theatre (or ART for short). As a stage manager/prop guy/lighting bitch (my actual term was Master Electrician, but with the lighting designer I was working with, lighting bitch was more apt), I spent alot of time around the actors and almost never left the Theatre. During our second show (True West), the actress playing the mother (and would be a main actress in the next production) receives a letter from the INS. It seems that Theresa, a citizen of Wales, had sent in her work visa a day late. Yup, one day late. This meant she might be booted from the country. That's a problem. Theresa doesn't want to leave. "All my stuff is here, dammit!" she tells me. She talks to a lawyer (who happened to be married to another cast member. You have to love freebies) and asked for help.
"There is some paper work we can fill out. We have two weeks. If we don't get it done, you'll have to leave...or we'll need another idea."
I'm in the theatre being the lighting bitch...sorry, master electrician...when the artistic director comes in to talk to me.
"Leab. Come here for a sec."
As he says this, he neglects to notice I am holding a light and ten feet in the air.
"," I find myself saying.
After a few moments, I'm able to get down.
"What do you need, Nic?" I ask.
"Are you still single?"
Most of the people I'm working with are aware of my situation. I'm a drunk. I've bounced through a few different gals since losing the perceived love of my life, and I'm currently covered in hickies thanks to a visiting gal pal ( a beautiful Louisiana girl who I was nowhere near worthy of).
"Yeah. I don't have a sig ot (significant other) right now."
"Good," Nic responds. "I may need a favor."
"What's that?"
"Are you aware of Theresa's situation?"
Nic then proceeds to tell me how Theresa may be deported.
"So what do you want from me?" I ask.
"Would you be willing to help Theresa stay in the country? We REALLY need her."
"How....Uh, how could I help?"
"Well, she would need an American spouse."
It's at this point that the mechanism in my head clicks into place:
I have nothing against this woman. She's a lovely gal with a quirky sense of humor and only twenty-two years my senior.
The problem is I do not want to be in a sitcom.
The American guy marries the Welsh woman to keep her in country....Wait till the in-laws visit!
This becomes a little joke among my friends as well.
"Dead man walking," one gal tells me. "This man's getting married."
To be safe, Theresa and I meet on a Thursday.
"I guess," she begins," we should learn everything about each other in case they come and ask us."
"Where do we start?"
The next few hours involve me telling her about my family, her telling me about her father as well as how her mother died, and finally concocting a story about how we met (working on a show), our first date (dinner on the Hill), and our first kiss (in the park near the lake).
Three days later her lawyer returns with the news, "you can stay," which is great, because I really do not want to be married and in college.
For the rest of that year (not the summer, YEAR), I was made fun of by colleagues and friends.
At one point, ART attends an end of summer banquet all St. Louis theatre companies attend. It's placecard seating.
I end up next to Theresa, of course.
Halfway through the award ceremony, we are called to stand up for a round of applause on our marriage.
We have to tell everyone the entire story we concocted "just in case."
It's...slightly embarrassing, but more over it is strange watching these people hang on my everyword as I explain how I was prepared to commit a crime.

The last I heard, Theresa went back to Wales. Her father had died and left her everything including a house and farm. She went back to attend to it. I never heard from her again after that summer.
So much for fake true love.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Ramblings for the Evening (01/03/06)

First day back. Why is the first day back after break always so hard.
I know, part of it is getting back into the swing of things (like going to bed before 1 am and getting up while it's still dark. Damn I can't wait for Spring.), and part of it is overcoming the inertia of the kids (that's the hardest part).
So I saw the three Weird Sisters, the Freshman who all jumped for joy when they saw me (why? I don't know.), and my fellow faculty (some of whom were happy, some of whom...not so much).
Typical first day back.
Damn I'm tired.
So, without further ado: BEBOP DE LOO...THONG SONG!
And When You Were Eight?:
I read
this article today. An eight-year-old has done everything (including the youngest to the top of Mount Rainer) but climb to the peak of Everest. What were you doing when you were eight? Yeah, I was playing with friends and doing all sorts of, well, kid stuff. Now, his parents are mountain climbers which leads me to wonder: Is this another one of those kid does it because parents make him or her.
I knew a gal in high school who was a dancer. She started dancing at the age of three. Ballet mostly. She was never really given the choice. Her mother wanted her to dance, and she did it. Every day. EVERY DAY, she danced. She was given Christmas Day and Thanksgiving day off. That's it. Now, she's a professional dancer, but throughout high school, she was unhappy. She couldn't hang out with friends after school, because she had dance. She missed her prom (She was dancing in Detroit). You know any girls in or have been in high school? Prom is huge. Especially Senior Prom, yet Nancy (not her real name) was never allowed to be with us. She even had to stop dating her boyfriend, because her mother felt it interfered with dance.
Too many kids are now shuffled into programs, because the parents don't know what to do, don't want the kid to have free time, or are unsure of what to do. I worry about some of the upcoming kids being wound up way too tight because of parental influence.
It's amazing to me, but people truly can be identified by their cars. More often than not, your car is the representation of your personality.
I was driving back from St. Paul and stopped to get gas. A car pulled up next to me with multiple bumper stickers:
"It's a child, not a choice."
"Warning: In case of rapture, this car will be unmanned."
and my personal favorite, Calvin kneeling before a cross.
It sounds crass, but I knew it was a shorter woman, and I knew she would appear meek or mousey.
I was right.
Looking around the gas station, I started looking at the cars. I know this sounds stereotypical, and it is, but I was mostly right.
Honda Accord with huge muffler and rear spoiler had to be driven by Asian-American teens. Check.
"Pickup truck with Calvin peeing on a Chevy logo." Owner would be in an Arctic Cat jacket. Check.
The one that threw me off? A gray car with a single "Ralph Nader in 2004" bumpersticker.
Who voted for Nader? Would it be a man? A woman? I know I was staring because when the owner returned, he mentioned to his buddy about, "The dude staring at the car."
He was a fat, hairy
Bruce Vilanch look-a-like. Couldn't have guessed that.
You tell me: Am I wrong? Can a car not tell us who the person inside is? If I drive a BMW, what does that say? A Pickup? A Subaru?
Maybe it's just me, but try it sometime. Instead of people-watching, watch cars and look at the drivers. The look and type of the car will usually match up with the driver.
That's it for tonight.
Tomorrow, I'll tell the fun story about how I almost married a gal to keep her in the country. Those were good times.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Mail Mondays (01/02/06)

Annnnnnnnnd Happy New Year.
Yeah, I'm a day late and a dollar short, but it's the thought that counts.
Let me start by saying Arrested Development is the best show in television. Period. Tonight's episode was pure genius. They hit every type of gimmick other shows would do: Live feed (last line), stunt casting (Andy Richter in five parts), heartfelt (father and son bond!), and even 3D. They also threw in so many inside jokes. They producers shopped the show to HBO who passed. The line in the show?
"The Housing Builders Organization isn't going to want us?"
"The HBO passing on us? We don't need them."

"What are we going to do?"
"It's show time."
If Showtime really does save the show, I think many people would be ecstatic.
I'm also happy to announce (if anyone who read this cares) that Futurama is going to return. As of right now it's only as a straight-to-DVD movie, but the producers have been talking about bringing the show back a la Family Guy. I don't know about you, but I found Futurama extremely funny. The episode where Fry switches hands with the Robot Devil was not only laugh out loud funny, but also quite touching.
So, how about the mail? Well, I got some really interesting nastygrams after the post about Don Shelby. Apparently he's loved by many a Minnesotan. There were a few "How dare you"s, a couple of "You crossed the line"s, and one, "I don't get it."
So, how about I stop rambling and get to the mail?
Yeah, I'm skipping Sherno Stops, because I missed a few days and don't have a full total.
First of all, where the hell did the "Throwdown in Downtown" come from?
Secondly, that was the WORST ending I could have expected. The "Fight of the Century" ends up in a draw? Come on, that's a cop out. You cheated your readers!
We wanted Keillor to be left in a bloody pile.
We wanted the other guy (that would be Rex Sorgatz. It's good to see complainers really read) to be badly beaten.
We wanted an ENDING!
Disgruntled Reader

1. Short and simple: Rex Sorgatz was selling a shirt with the words, "A Prairie Ho Companion" on it. Keillor got pissed and fired off a cease and desist order. It was a perfect setup for a fight.
2. Sorry if you're unhappy, but that's how it ended. Why? Well, first of all, I opened it up to the public to decide who would win. One person voted for Rex, and one person voted for Keillor. Let's see...if I do the math...carry the four...yeah, that's one for each of them.
There will be another fight in a few months. I can almost guarantee that.
You can't be happy with every ending. I know a few films where the ending pissed me off (Matrix Revolutions, Saving Private Ryan [How could Matt Damon KNOW what the others experienced?], Crimson Tide, I could go on and on). However, did you laugh at all? Did you not find the whole Fan Man thing funny (a story which happened in real life)?
If not, then yes, I did fail you, but if you even giggled, then I did it right.
Sorry you don't like the way it went. How about suggesting an ending for the next one.
Tice got fired.

I don't really like the Vikings. I feel bad for the guy, but EVERYONE saw it coming the minute management gave him their backing.
Whenever management says, "We back (fill in the blank) fully," he or she is getting fired. End of story.
He'll work again, probably in college.
Are you really married?

Also, your pics. Is that really your dad?
Curious J

Yup. It's proof the universe is totally unfair.
I have a wife of almost five years (March 3rd to be exact).
Ask her. I think she's nuts.

Secondly, yup. That's my dad. I actually put that picture on stamps for him so he can send himself to others. If I ever have a production company (say, Ironic Teachings Productions), that would be my symbol. The man with the balloon.
Mr. Leab
I don't like being the butt of someone's jokes.
Who the hell is "Diddy", and why are you comparing him to me?
I assure you I am a professional and would never smack a fellow anchor.
Shape up, sir.
Don Shelby

Dear Don,
Fake letters are always fun.
It's even better when someone emails you as "Don Shelby" with Don and Shelby in quotes throughout the entire letter.
If one weren't looking at the email carefully, one might miss that fact as well as the smiley face at the bottom of the page.
Good try though.
I somehow get the sense the REAL Don Shelby hasn't read this. Perhaps DeRusha will point him my way and then I'll really get my ass kicked.

Last one:
Fuck you so much for that Jingle Bells thing.
It was lame, but it almost gave me a heart attack.
You're a bastard.
A loving student

Dear meine studentin,
I got a few emails and comments about this.
I sent it to my wife, who screamed, and then got very angry at me.
(In case you missed it,
here it is again.)
However, the angriest email came from a co-worker of my wife who didn't understand my warning...and watched it with her six year old son. Umm, he freaked, apparently peed himself (on her lap), and she was pissed at me. That was a fun email.

Well, that's it for tonight. School starts up again tomorrow, so my posting may become erratic.
I should have ramblings tomorrow and on Wednesday a fun story about how I almost married a gal to keep her in the country.
Take care.