Friday, January 22

Friday Olio: Not Funny

• Kee-rist, why do I know there is something out there called (something like) The Co-Co Army, and how is it anyone could possibly care what Conan O'Brien does? He got shafted by NBC and Leno. And as a result he walks off with a king's ransom. Find someone with real problems to care about.

It might be different if he was funny, but as far as I can tell, some suit told him in 1993 that they saw him as an edgier Steve Allen, and it stuck. I've never seen the man when anything he did didn't come with calculation marks all over it. It's like watching SNL, circa 1976, and learning that Belushi has demanded they do nothing but Bee skits.

• I happened upon Letterman last night while I was trying to find something to accompany bicycling. He was busy slagging Carson Daly and Jay Leno. Not funny slagging, either; just meanness. Which I'm all for, except what possible reason would anyone have to be rude about Carson Fucking Daly? It's like starting a feud with the woman at the grocery store who refills the lotto ticket dispenser.

Look, David, we'll always have Clover Power, and it's not like I've been part of your audience the last fifteen years or so, but th' fuck? If you're not even going to try to be funny at least let the audience smoke dope openly so we'll know why they're howling at this shit.

• This reminded me that last weekend my neighbor forced us to take home his copy of The Hangover, the comedy sensation of the summer, and, being not merely a vocational salesman but a congenitally avocational one, prefaced the handoff with "Do you guys wanna go home and laugh your asses off?" I was tempted to respond, "Hey, I've got The Comedians of Comedy on disc. Want me to bring that over so you can stare uncomfortably at Zach Galifianakis' stand-up for two hours?"

I didn't, and it would have been unfair--he's not unintelligent, for a Republican, and a very funny guy--he might even know Galifianakis' stand-up, and it's possible I will laugh my ass off at The Hangover, although it's also possible I will finish reading the Great Works of Western Civ first, since I have only about 5000 to go.

I said this before, but you go through their rather extensive DVD collection and there's every piece of wildly popular trash of the last twenty years. I'm long past trying to understand this, but it does have the saving grace that, as middle-class Middle American Republicans they're supposed to hate Hollywood with a passion, and they're the ones keeping it afloat. (And, again, while the aesthetic portion of my attitude dates to being a high-school know-it-all, my one practical lesson, which scarred me for life, is the fault of George Lucas, the general population of Indianapolis, and my dick, not necessarily in that order. I squired a remarkably Amazonian Bible College freshman to a first-run showing of Star Wars, at her request, and the hooting, clapping, hissing, booing, and foot-stomping of the crowd, which suggested it had more in common with the slack-jawed audience of Orson Welles' War of the Worlds, or possibly the hayseeds of the 20s who thought William S. Hart and Tom Mix were actually killing actual Injuns, or that players who walked off-screen could be located in the appropriate wing, than it did a crowd of people which had recently lived through a rash of political assassinations, the forcible and violent defense of Jim Crow, and the public disgracing of a petty thug and felon who was simultaneously their President, left me speechless. I'd'a walked out within ten minutes, but my dick decided to stay. The number of times I have ventured into a public theatre since then without first confirming that the flick in question was subtitled you can count on any other appendage.)

• Not only that, but for some reason, probably my Poor Wife's remote habits, I not only know that Tiger Woods is in rehab--and if you can rehab "being a wealthy, attractive celebrity who likes to fuck" then I guess the nation's Strategic Celebrity Rehab Capacity is a tad excessive--but that he's been allowed to bring in help to clean his toilet, something lesser celebrity poon-hounds apparently are forced to do for themselves. How fucking hard is it to clean a toilet? How fucking far gone do you have to be that you simply must have someone else do it? Isn't that goddam pendulum supposed to swing back at some point, and some generation of American citizens, force-fed this crap from infancy, to take umbrage?

• And local news last night, of the Channel 8 variety, took forty minutes to get to anything that might possibly have resembled news, because they were busy doing live remotes from a Colts Pep Rally. I believe those of us who didn't care to attend were allowed to take an extra period of study hall in the cafeteria. At any rate, the one bit of "news" they did cram into the first half-hour was the exciting word--it excited them no end, at any rate--that ion-battery producer EnerDel is set to open a new plant in Hancock county, creating 500 new jobs, and all thanks to Mitch Daniels and Indiana's business-friendly environment, according to the EnerDel mouthpiece 8 quoted.

Well, they seem to've left out a couple of small details. Like the fact that zoning hasn't been approved, not that the rights of local governments would stop the Bantam Menace from fluffing the story at a presser. Jes' to help move the process along, y'know. Or that EnerDel at this point seems to be largely floating on a sea of Federal loans and grants. Or that the last deal resulted in fewer jobs than promised. Or that there's apparently no financing secured for the new one. Or, y'know, that Indiana's business-friendly environment has had it hemorrhaging jobs the past two years at a higher-than-national average. Success! Jobs! More corporate political contributions so we might be running campaign ads from this April to November, 2012!

There's not even any sense that they should try to hide this stuff anymore, which leads me to believe Depressing The Fuck Out Of Anyone With Reading Comprehension has always been Job 1.


heydave said...

So your week was good too?

charles pierce said...

Hell, no.
We elected a Cosmo boy to the Senate --- and, apparently, we elected him King Of The World, too.
Given my mood, my advice to everyone else is to invest heavily in Jameson stock.

M. Bouffant said...

Between the hootin' Star Wars mobs & "a Colts Pep Rally. I believe those of us who didn't care to attend were allowed to take an extra period of study hall in the cafeteria," we reading comprehenders are being forced to live through someone else's Guiness-worthy extension of adolescence.

D. Sidhe said...

I actually didn't know that about Tiger. But WTF? Surely someone pointed out to him that bringing in domestic help to rehab would be splashed across the news and be very, very bad PR?

heydave said...

So many items to comment upon, but I'll just point out it's not how hard it is to clean a toilet, but rather how long one can put off doing it oneself that counts.

Upathetic Pissbucket said...

Do you suppose your republican "friend" knows about the condescending judgments and snickering you indulge in behind his back?

Anonymous said...

Re your remark about how the goddam pendulum is supposed to swing back at some point: I have a strong suspicion that it's partly the influence of tv "news" that keeps that swing from happening in the expected sense - - or anyway that it muffles and baffles whatever strainings and quivers the pendulum might produce in a progressive direction.

If a populace has indeed been force-fed crap for more than a generation or 2, they may accept that it's crap, but they may also have a damn hard time imagining any alternative.

Li'l Innocent

Anonymous said...

I don't know a lot about Tiger Woods, but hadn't he been carefully groomed, coached and nurtured since young childhood to be a phenomenal golfer?
What would lead us to believe he knows how to clean a toilet or any other household item?

Come to think of it, I've never known a man who laid brush to toilet. I suppose they still make army recruits do it?

Li'l Innocent

heydave said...

Hey now, some of us in that gender take pride in maintaining and ensuring the physical upkeep of our homes/caves/yurts, including basic bathroom maintenance. Like, totally unprovoked by social mores, also.

desertscope said...

You should have posted a picture of someone strangling a kitten or kicking a puppy. You know, just to complete the mood.

Anonymous said...

Hey, heydave, take no offense at my sweeping (or swabbing) generalizations! I know that there are paragons with Y chromos, and, the Goddess knows, loads of XXers who'd rather risk an armed invasion by their local board of health than get Under the Rim.

I'll tell ya, though: the day I see a toilet-cleaning ad on tv that shows a reasonably realistic, virile male doing the honors without some sort of heh-heh over or undertones, I'll know that Lucretia Mott, Margaret Sanger, Betty Friedan abd the others have not labored in vain. Seriously. Hell, you don't even see males in ads doing laundry very often, or really any kind of routine, repetitive housework.

If you, personally, find some satisfaction as a human man in performing domestic tasks, maybe you could write a book, or blog, about it, and spread some gentle enlightenment.

Li'l Innocent

Uncle Omar said...

I have absolutely nothing to add to the discussion except that my verification word is "ratses." My first thought was that this is a contraction of "rat's testes," but upon mature reflection have determined that is a Blogger description of The Little Giant, Mitch Daniels.