Sunday, April 30


I just got to this weekend's comments, and apparently (thank you, Scott C., who was kind enough not to suggest I'd stolen it, even in a subconscious, "My Sweet Lord" sorta way) the Rothko Paint-by-Numbers thing will be headed to court. Here's the sort of thing I'd be advised not to say about it if I had competent legal help:

1. In fact I had the idea around 1973, out of the blue, while thumbing a Oui magazine piece about a rather attractive young woman who had been given a Rothko as a gift but didn't care for it. There were accompanying pictures of the young woman, but not the Rothko. Its absence made me suspicous of her entire backstory, and all this tangential ratiocination spoiled the mood. This is not the sort of thing I'd admit unless I was desperate for people to believe me.

2. I'm not sure whether this was the period when the late Michael O'Donoghue was the editor of Oui, though he was the only reason I read it. At any rate I was unaware at that time that he collected paint-by-numbers works and this is purely a coincidence.

3. Though I was the toast of for about three days in 1997 because my fan club membership (wife, birthday gift) number is in the 800s, I missed practically the whole fourth season, including The Rebel Set, which, I've learned, features Ed ("Chief") Platt as a bearded coffeeshop owner, something I'd remember. I'm not clear why I missed all but a half dozen. It may have been that Comedy Central/Channel screwed around with the time slot, and/or that they didn't do a Thanksgiving Marathon that year, or they did and I missed taping it. I typically caught up with a lot of stuff by swapping VHS tapes every three shows for a 24-hour period on Thanksgiving, because at the time I was a married man with a responsible career and not some punk kid who had nothing else to do but watch teevee.

4. Being a quotidian (in the sense of "fevered") reader of both World O'Crap and its delightful stable of commenters, it would never occur to me to consciously attempt put an MST gag past any of its obsessed, anal-retentive fan base of genetically-mutated memory freaks. I do score in the 99th percentile on any Simpsons quote cascade, but MST, no, although I have set as a goal memorizing the Mike vs. Crow "You watch chick flicks" bit at the end of that Kathy Ireland movie.


Ray Bridges said...


I suppose the real surprise is why anyone looking upon a Rothko painting doesn't immediately think of it as paint-by-number(s) kit. I know I never will again.

Anonymous said...

There are some gems from season four that are definitely worth catching up with, a lot of them avaible on the Rhino DVDs. I wouldn't put The Rebel Set in that category, though, and it's not surprising you missed it; along with City Limits and Being From Another Planet, it's one of those episodes people just never seem to talk about. Not even the rabid Ned Glass and Edward Platt fans (you know who you are).

I'd definitely recommend Space Travelers (Marooned with the Film Ventures International treatment), Teenagers from Outer Space (with King Moody from Get Smart!) Hercules Unchained, Attack of the Eye Creatures, Human Duplicators (with Richard Kiel and George Nader and Hugh Beaumont), Monster A-Go-Go, The Day the Earth Froze ("Ohhh, cripes! I remember THAT day...!"), and, of course, Manos, the Hands of Fate.

Anonymous said...

The word for that inadvertant theft thing is "cryptomnesia". Other examples examples: Bridey Murphy, every time my sister has ever been funny.

However, sometimes great minds just think alike.

Anonymous said...

You admit to reading Oui?

Anonymous said...

Thirty years ago. But, c'mon, all the kids were doin' it.

One other contributing factor, now that I've thought about it, was that my wife, though a fan, would rarely sit through an entire episode and viewed it as watching a really bad movie with comedy attached, instead of vice-versa. So it became increasingly untenable to sit on the couch two hours of a Saturday morning with a lot of throat clearning and ostentatious pot-banging going on behind me. Just kidding.

I've seen Eye Creatures, Human Duplicators, and Manos. For the rest I'll have to hie myself upstairs and check the Museum of Videotape.

Anonymous said...

Oh Mr. Riley... I KNEW you were one of us MSTies. You just needed an intervention ("Hi, I'm Doghouse, and I'm a MST3K fan." "HI DOGHOUSE."). I'm sure one of us in the Blogsphere could increase your videotape library exponentially, if'n you want to. Just say the word. (And that word would be "HIKEEBA!")