"Klotz" As In "Blood"

A Testament to the Insidious Impact of Florida Sunshine on Brain Matter

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Political Science

Filed under: Etherea — Steve @ 9:29 am

Cuppla weeks ago I find myself staring at a 7:30 breakfast meeting appointment, one of those wrist-slitting affairs calling for wrapping up in useless articles of clothing like socks, underwear, necktie, jacket, etc. You know, the ornaments white people make the lower classes wear.

So I’m up at O-Dark Hundred, push a cat off my face (the 17 pounder), get the day moving at a slow, painful crawl. Had I an unbaked brain I would have picked out an outfit the night before, but then, if I own a working brain why am I roped into this meeting? Ponder, grumble, cut myself shaving.

Inevitably late. I can’t dress myself: I don’t see colors well, and have limited zero sense of style or taste. Yawning Guido lends a hand. Tie trailing, jacket folded, ready to run out the door when the heavens open to celebrate the Genesis of Florida’s Rainy Season. Three seconds from front door to car and I’d be drenched.

Grab an umbrella, splash my way out and only get bone-soaked below the knee. The maneuver into the car, closing the umbrella, then pulling it in is a trick I never mastered, so I’m wet as an otter, not nearly as cute. The car windows steam up like a Salvation Army soup kitchen, and when I slip the ancient Toyota into first gear, the porous headliner cuts loose with fetid liquid like a twin cunted cow pissing on a flat rock.

The 20 year old defroster and heater screaming and blowing, rusted wipers bouncing across the windshield, I head east into the storm, over the Sheridan Street bridge onto southbound AIA. If I’m lucky, they won’t mistake me at the tony Diplomat for a water rat that crawled out of the intracoastal.

Park in the lot — late! late! late! — and secure my tie using the expansive rear window of the SUV beside me. Looks like shit. Wet, soaking shit. Lopsided, too. Pull on my out of season double breasted blue blazer, which, under quite different circumstances, draws compliments (e.g., “You gotta give that back to the undertaker for the funeral tomorrow?” Yeah, fuckweed, along with the dentures.). I am so late. Only reason I keep going is now I gotta pay for parking anyway.

Down 4 levels, across the bridge over AIA, through the front door of the Dip. Third world valets and doormen look better than I do, damn their eyes and crisp white shirts. Sense enough to stay outta the rain. Round the columns, down the endless corridor, panting up the 2-story escalator. Stone faced people eye me up and look away. Beautiful women stifle snickers. Well, some do, anyway.

Registration table. There’s only a dozen nametags left (everybody else and their perfumed mother is already inside, on their second cup of coffee. I recognize some people: we exchange g’mornings you made its. Stop to speak to a member of my board.

The combination of an impending election and this important meeting means the hallways are crawling with candidates, handing out pins, stickers, campaign literature; slapping backs and braying their names. My hand shakes like a Parkinson’s patient. One particular guy, the last one standing between me and the buffet eggs, gives me a wide smile, tells me his name, then says, “Do me and everybody else a favor — fix that collar, it looks uncomfortable.”

I don’t feel a damn thing, having disassociated myself from all bodily sensations following the first good soaking. “Where?” I ask, then, “Here! You do it, okay?”

Without hesitating, he reaches forward, grabs the collar of my jacket which is all twisted inside, and pulls it straight. Brushes the lapels approvingly. “Thanks,” we say together, and I walk in, shoulders square, a focused beeline to the coffee urn like I own the damn thing.

And that’s why I’m voting for Arthur E. Palamara, M.D., for State Representative of District 99. The only human being, a complete stranger at that, with enough milk of human kindness in his veins to concern himself with another man’s appearance at a moment when it might be important. Nobody else who saw me — strangers, employees, registration volunteers, acquaintances, even my own board member — cared enough to say a thing. But Arthur E. Palamara did.

So even if he’s a father raping axe murderer who likes getting up early, he’s got my vote. Thanks again, Doc.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Spiraling Back After 3 Daze

Thanks, Lu Senz. Just because we don’t have major league baseball in South Florida doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep our eye on the national pastime. And on the subject of Playing With Balls, I found this amusing.

And thanks to everybody for the overwhelming number of birthday wishes. Rest easy: I have returned Guido to her cage where she can’t reach a keyboard.

……………….

While we’re not paying attention, Nicaragua plots an election. To make a long and sordid story short, the ticket carrying Sandinista’s own Danny Ortega for president also sports former contra Jaime Morales Carazo as VP. A more unlikely pair could not be imagined, but I’ll try: Bill O’Reilly and Michael Jackson? Saddam Hussein and Donovan? Hilary Clinton and a human being? But the best comment is from the contra candidate himself: “I prefer the strange to the unknown.

That’s a first-rate quote, so he’d get my vote.

………………..

The bullshit surrounding Rep. William Jefferson of Louisiana is a cynic’s delight. While a point can be made for the complete lack of respect by this presidential administration for law, rights, and traditions, it is hard not to regard bipartisan Congressional outrage as raw, unadulterated fear that the same thing could happen to all of them. Face it: the sudden realization that maybe you’re not above the law after all must come as a bowel-watering shock.

I’m waiting for the appropriate authority — a numerologist, phrenologist, nomenclaturist, I dunno — to remark on the congressman’s name: “William Jefferson.” Just add “Clinton” and a blue dress, and the coincidence is eerie. They call him “Dollar Bill.” Anybody remember John Wayne Gacey?

Anyway, they find $90,000 in cash in the congressman’s freezer. Cold cash. Frozen assets. This is not the sort of fellow you want to rally around. It’s like taking sides with Rodney King. Eventually you’re gonna get burned.

But there they are, gathered like flies on a pool of toad load, buzzing angrily. Records are sealed for 45 days while everybody simmers. This year’s summer story has begun.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Bondsage

Filed under: Playing With Balls — Steve @ 8:45 pm

It’s a 3-day weekend!! So here’s guest poster Vera Lu Senz with a thought or two on weekend baseball, and the top story of the, well, should be decade, but it barely bested coverage of some pothead signing with Canadians. Okay — Lu Senz:

Just a quick Memorial Day Weekend note about Barry Bonds becoming only the second baseball player in Major League History to hit as many as 715 home runs, surpassing Babe Ruth.

He did it at home — San Francisco — the sole remaining baseball park in the United States where the presence of fans doesn’t create overtime pay opportunities for security personnel, including trained snipers. It is said that the fans in the city of San Francisco — and look: I know where you’re going with this and it’s just wrong. I don’t want to hear about San Fran’s Post- Earthquake Plan for emergency K-Y jelly stands, alright? That’s not where this is heading! — that the fans there are behind support Bonds 100%, and are excited about his breaking the record at home in the friendly confines.

So why is it that the fan who walked away with the home run #715 baseball wasn’t even watching the game? Wasn’t even aware that Bonds was at bat? The shmuck gets up for some peanuts and beer in an inning where Bonds is scheduled to bat. Standing in line, the ball lands at his feet, and he’s off to the races, accompanied by security. Never did get his peanuts and beer, which is what his girlfriend, who actually saw the historic event, was most concerned about.

Here’s some hometown coverage. It’s all such a letdown and a heartbreak. On the plus side, it happened on a 3-day weekend where it’s patriotic to drink.

Friday, May 26, 2006

In Dog Years, I’m Dead

Filed under: Etherea — Steve @ 12:04 am

Happy Birthday to Me!

I got three whole birthday cards. One’s from my insurance agent — car, house, life, you name it it’s him — who does this every year as an acknowledgment to a major donor to his own retirement fund. Another from a financial planner who sold me a disability policy some years ago. And my mother, who reminds me every year at HER birthday and mother’s day, when SHE gets a card, what a waste it is to send them.

No problem. Actually, I agree with her.

One of my best birthdays was a few years ago: took off from the salt mine and spent the sunniest part of the day (11 – 4) out on the beach, rotating for the even tan. Came home and pounded a cuppla cold ones — yeah, Rolling Rocks, a subject we’ll return to in a few days — shower, nap, and, well, actually I can’t remember. Sure hope I got laid, though. I’ll ask Guido.

Now If I knew how to create one those blog-polls that Rick at SotP whips together, I’d set it up so readers could take guesses how old I turn today. But I don’t, so please post your guess in the comments, along with your reasons. Remember: cruel answers inspire maximum amusement.

Anyway, I’m off to the beach for some negrification. Maybe I’ll bump into Tanya Hyde.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Ain’t Easy Being Green

Filed under: Sense & Sensuality — Steve @ 11:50 am

News from the Land of the Babbling Brook is grim:

The owner of the Rolling Rock brand, a U.S. subsidiary of the Belgium-based brewing giant InBev SA, announced Friday that it had sold the brand to Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc. for $82 million.

The old brewery in Latrobe, PA is scheduled for padlocking, and its 200 employees are looking at layoffs. But the worst news is, the Rolling Rock brand will now be brewed in Newark, NJ, by the same people who inflicted Budweiser, Busch, and other bladder-tortures on the world.

Rock wasn’t my very first beer, but it became my #1 as soon as I developed taste buds, and remains so. It has a huge following in parts of the Northeast, where people appreciate its crisp, clean flavor, and above all, its sheer ability to quench thirst. That’s so down the toilet when Anheuser-Busch takes over.

Reaction in PA runs from despair to outrage. “There’s a reason people drink Rock — it ain’t Bud,” commented one barfly, who wouldn’t give his name because his wife didn’t know he wasn’t at work. “It’s the un-Bud. The anti-Bud. Friends don’t let friends drink Bud. What was the question?”

“I don’t fucking breathe the air in Newark,” another stated, disgustedly. “You think I’d fucking drink the beer?”

(Language Note: In parts of PA, particularly around Philadelphia, the word “fucking” is used adverbially, not adjectivally. Most Americans say, “drink the fucking beer,” (adjective), not “fucking drink the beer” (adverb). Of course, in Philthydelphia itself, most learned speakers would say, “fucking drink the fucking beer.”)

Personally devastated by this news, I’ve launched a campaign to recruit investors to purchase the brewery and continue manufacture of the exact same beer, using the recipe and retaining employees. The name would change, of course, as would the bottle and logo. How about just “Old Latrobe”? Or “33″? Naturally, we’d continue the “pony bottles” — those 7 oz wonders (unavailable in Florida) one shoots down by the dozens on hot summer afternoons. Contact me through the blog if you’re legitimately interested.

“There’s an election in November,” pointed out a Rock employee. “Rendell ain’t doin’ so hot, particularly in western PA. If he steps in and saves this brewery, these jobs, this town, he’s won himself another term. Guaranteed.”

We’ll continue this discussion soon. It ain’t over ’til the fat lady belches. Meanwhile, beer drinkers, what’re your thoughts?

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Press The Right Buttons

Filed under: Etherea — Steve @ 12:36 am

It looks like good news. A printed form letter, it announces that the health care provider has been paid in full and the account is closed.

Trouble is, I don’t recognize the health care provider, and I can’t remember ever having gone there for anything. Bureaucratic screw-up? Identity theft in process? Senility? I figure screw it. It’ll take care of itself.

Guido aims the look she learned in wife school directly at my heart and “suggests” I call to straighten things out. Faithful married men know exactly why we ought to take our wives’ “suggestions.”

I hate bureaucracy and printed forms. I despise digitalized telephone answering messages. I resent speaking to strangers about shit that is none of their business and they don’t care about anyway, but who have “procedures” to follow if I want any information.

I place the call and after a few rings I get the notorious digitialized message that thanks me for calling (with the sincerity of a $5 whore who says that she loves me while administering a handjob), and sets the average wait time at some randomly selected number of minutes. Eat my ass, I mutter cleverly, and settle in to endure the hold button music, which is mercifully classical, not LOV-94 elevator or god forbid country.

Next a recording advising sternly that I listen carefully because selections have changed (Liar Fucking Liar!). I am asked to punch in my 17-digit account number, which incredibly I find on the one-page form. Pause. Do it again because something happened and “they” didn’t get it. Grrrr. Lather Rinse Repeat. More choices, none remotely close to what I want (no I don’t want to hear a recording about pre-birth diets, cholesterol management, or the proper treatment of crab lice). I feel myself losing it, and, like a lab rat with an electrode in the pleasure center of its cortex, I start pressing the 0 key over and over. And believe it or not, a human being picks up.

She bids me “Grdmwninth” and asks me how she can help me. I tell her I don’t know who I dialed, who she is, who the provider is, what the bill is for, why the account exists or existed, and what’s going on. She listens (I guess) then asks me for my 17 digit account number.

You mean the one I punched in twice 15 minutes ago? I ask nastily. You didn’t get it that time? Why’d you ask me for it, then?

Grimly she repeats her request for the number. So I punch it into the phone again, all 17 numbers, slowly and deliberately to make sure she gets it this time.

Apparently this makes an impression, because when I put the phone back to my ear she’s screaming at me to stop and what the hell am I doing and sounds damn near on the edge of hysteria. I piece together that this time she wanted me to SAY the numbers, not punch them in using the telephone keypad. Well excuuuuuuuuuuuuse me but why didn’t she just SAY so?

Well, now that we’ve achieved this little understanding, I convince her that insofar as it’s MY call, it’s MY questions that need answering, not the ones in her goddam playbook prescribing how to handle customer requests for information. So she answers my questions one at a time and I get to the bottom of the puzzle, which, briefly, is that over a year ago I had an in-office procedure by a third party who billed my insurance and it took this long to settle; as a courtesy the insurance company sent me a notice that a dispute I knew nothing about had been settled. It’s that easy.

“Is there anything else I can do for you, Sir?” she sobs, miserably.

Just have a nice day, I say sunnily, and ring off.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Feels Like Faith, Smells Like Fish

Filed under: What A Wonderful World — Steve @ 12:07 am

So this guy walks into a fish store and says, “I caught this little 5 pound tuna with markings on its side that look like writings from the Koran.” Oh, not again, thinks the fishmonger, but he checks it out and damned it doesn’t say “You are the best provider” (in Arabic. Look at the photo. See for yourself!). So they figure it must be holy and they send it over to the fisheries department (whatever the hell that is) while they decide what to do with it.

Word seeps out and now the whole damn village wants to see the “Koranic Tuna.” A bunch of people want to buy it. Others want it to cure their leprosy, make them rich, or grow a third tit.

Two guys show up claiming they’re from the National Museum and want the fish for safekeeping. They’re complete frauds, but they pull it off and get the fish. All hell breaks loose when the deception is discovered and they find Charlie the Tuna, a little riper now, back at the original shop. Go figger. So now the village cops are involved, and everybody’s trying to figure out if this poor dead fish is holy, a hoax, or tomorrow’s Purina. Stay tuned.

It’s every bit as genuine as that 10-year old cheese sandwich with Virgin Mary’s face,or the image of Jesus in the window of the Rio Grande (TX) True Value hardware store. Which is to say that it’s as genuine as a lawyer’s handshake. But people bled blue bible ink defending the legitimacy of those two signs from god, and Talibangelists whooped it up for all it was worth, which was plenty.

Fear not: somebody’s gonna make a fortune off this. Anticipate competing proclamations from High Religious Authorities about its legitimacy, a debate that millions of people will take seriously. Prayers and sacrifice will become the order of the day. Might even be some serious rioting, or at least minor murder and mayhem in the name of the lord. Shit like this brings out the very best in human compassion and decency the world over.

Say — is it coincidental that the fisherman who caught it is named “Da Vinci?”

……………………..Update……………………..

Intrigued by the “Koranic Tuna,” I called the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) in Dania Beach this morning for further information. I was connected to a Stan Snagline in the Records Department. As you know, IGFA is the keeper of and final authority for world angling records.

“Actually, we were talking about that just yesterday,” he chuckled. “Kind of a message-in-a-bottle thing, if you will. Except the message is on the outside, and it ain’t a bottle.”

Is there anything in the record books about this?

“A 5-pound tuna? If that had been caught recreationally, it would’ve been thrown right back. Should be anyway, but it probably came up in a net with dozens or hundreds of others, and besides, people over there are more concerned with eating than they are with conservation issues. Understandably.”

Is there a separate category of records for fish with religious inscriptions?

He pauses. “You know,” he says slowly, “I’ve been with IGFA for 14 years now, working with anglers and records and fishing clubs all over the world. I’d have to check with some of the real old-timers who’ve been here, but speaking for myself, I’d have to say that’s the dumbest fucking question anybody has ever asked me.”

Guess I’ll keep searching. God is good. Pass the chili paste.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Beating Themselves

Filed under: Playing With Balls — Steve @ 10:21 am

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaand here’s our very own Vera Lu Senz on weekend baseball!

I’m seated before the big screen on Friday night, cold beer in hand, feet up. Long day. Good to unwind with a baseball game.

It’s the 6th inning, scored tied at 2 (no, unlike the duncecaps on the air, I don’t say “tied at 2-2.” Words are too precious to afford redundancy). Brian Moehler’s on the mound for the Marlins, and up to the plate, with a runner in scoring position, steps Travis Lee.

At 30 years old, Travis-Tee is a washed-up veteran with his best year behind him. That would be 2001, when he batted all of .258 on his way to collecting 90 RBI for the Phillies, a season in which he also struck out 109 times. Standing in the batter’s box Friday in his second tour of duty with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, he brings a lifetime average of .259 and a streak of 33 consecutive ABs with runners in scoring position in which he has come up empty……

……but this time the lefthander drives Moehler’s silver-plated offering of a belt-high stationary “fast” ball into the shallow outfield, scoring the runner from second. The Rays go on to win the game.

Neither Moehler nor Travesty are first-rate major league players; they find roles to play on desperate teams looking for inexpensive fixes to play out the string that is their season. Both Florida teams recognize that they’re playing neither for glory nor a post-season berth. As such, the teams and these two players are evenly-matched, even competitive. But the overall view from the bleachers is bleak. Who the hell wants to see mediocrity and hopelessness in a fight to the death? If I’m Nero, I turn thumbs down on both of them. Feed them to the lions; at least the fans will enjoy the feast.

Shit. Where’s the beef? I switched off the game and went to bed.

But on a positive note, Saturday night’s game in Chicago featured a fine brawl between two catchers, The WhiteSox’ A.J. Pierzynski and Cubs’ Michael Barrett. Barrett didn’t like the way Pierzynski came in to score, so he punched him, clearing the benches and igniting a 15 minute fracas. This comes after a game in Houston where Russ Springer was ejected for throwing 5 pitches at Barry Bonds, eventually hitting him.

It’s good to see players taking the game personally like this, and a welcome relief to the overall pussification one sees in football, for example, where the whistle blows before a player is tackled and the defense can’t breathe cross-eyed on quarterbacks or wide receivers without flags getting thrown. What’s next? Holding penalties for fondling one’s own nuts?

Sports is supposed to be about competition between the best and the best, not second chances and male bonding. Reams of words have been written about what ruined sports — money, unions, free agency, drugs — but my vote is for the insidious influence of prayer in the locker rooms. Athletes need to stop loving their damn neighbors and start tearing out their lungs. This is sports, dammit, not fellowship hour.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Short Hops

It’s late, I’m tired, and too much has happened. So bear with me while I put up a bunch of short hits today.

As long as everybody else and his neighbor in town is dumping on longitudinally challenged Commissioner Johnny Winton — didn’t he used to be a albino blues guitarist? Had an even uglier brother named Edgar? — guess I might as well, too.

This is from the Miami Hurled:

A receipt released by police shows Winton started a bar tab at 5:48 p.m. and paid $130.26, including a $20 tip. Charged: seven glasses of Mondavi Pinot Grigio wine and four beers with side shots of Knob Creek whiskey and Disaronno amaretto liqueur.

The undersized commish was getting baked in a bar (hilariously called “Altitudes”) with what the Hurled describes as “a Texas man named Karl Folckemer.” Let’s assume that the bill reflects both parties’ drinks, because if we don’t, then we’re looking at some seriously nasty mixing of unmixables here.

Of course, we’re looking at some seriously nasty mixing of unmixables no matter how you shake or stir it. Pinot Grigio — when I saw that, my first thought was, which one of these great big buff hairy-chested he-men was drinking that gnat pis, the tough Texanne, or the MiamiMimi? — AND beer AND Knob Creek AND amaretto? Sauerkraut and ice cream while you’re at it? Try them all, kids, but not all at once.

Later, Flockemer told reporters, “He (Winton) was drinking wine. I don’t know what the girls were drinking. I was drinking beers and shots.”

So that answers that. Turns out Little Johnny gets belligerent when he sips white wine. Hope he didn’t break a nail.

* * *

Major crisis in the executive offices of what Ft Lauderdale calls a newspaper! Seems its story back in 2004 about Miami-Dade hogging all the FEMA money following Hurricane Frances, which didn’t even strike Miami-Dade, created major ripples in Washington, triggered a full-court defense at the highest levels. The story about Washington’s panic was reported yesterday in the Sun-Sentinel.

As noted previously, Ft. Lauderdale’s newspaper was cited by national conservation and environmental organizations as a waste of trees. It’s designed to step on no toes, ruffle no feathers, and spend no resources on actual news coverage. But despite its objectives, apparently it created some real friction, particularly in the office of former FEMA Director Michael “Doin’ A Heckuva Job Brownie” Brown.

“Now what?” groans Executive Editor Earl the Pearl Maucker at an emergency session this morning. “We go to all these lengths to avoid any appearance of journalistic integrity, and we end up in the national spotlight for a 2-year old story. What if people start to believe it’s our job to report news? What if they like the fact that we were on to something, broke it open, and threw some light on a dark scandal?”

“We’re doomed,” wails an unidentified Tribune Company flak, freshly arrived from Chicago HQ. “Did you actually read that coverage? It completely subverts our dickless corporate image as dutiful defenders of the middle ground.” She pauses to sniffle. “It’s — it’s — it’s relevant! Controversial! How did this happen?”

“Maybe it’ll just blow over,” suggests “Cubby” Kielbasi, Marketing Director. “Let’s double our sports coverage. Can’t we do another 10-page special on the NFL Draft? Or high school dwarf-tossing? How about reprinting every shitheaded review in the nation of the Da Vinci Code? Oh, wait, we’re already doing that.”

The story in this week’s paper is positively entertaining. Apparently FEMA, caught with its pants down, scrambled like hell not to resolve its errors, but to cover its image. Sound familiar? Here’s my favorite intercepted email to Brownie:

“Be cautious not to appear defensive or show that the ridiculous questions get under your skin when you’re at the press conf today [Sun-Sentinel reporter] Megan will show up. Just don’t want your expressions to give away your exasperation with this non-issue the way that the President’s did in the first debate.”

“Sure hope our staff doesn’t get hooked on the rush this is causing,” a dour Maucker muses. “I’d hate to have to go back to journalism after all these years.”

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Let’s All Drink to the Death of a Clown

Filed under: And They're Off — Steve @ 12:32 am

Clarabell, the seltzer-bottle wielding clown made famous on the Howdy Doody Show, passed away at age 84. Here’s the obit.

That’s him, the clown on the right. On the left is Buffalo Bob. The critter in the middle, wearing Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander’s shirt (below), is the puppet Howdy Doody, made famous, in later years by the sarcastic question, “Does Howdy Doody have a wooden pecker?”

Back to Clarabell. His real name was Lew Anderson. And he wasn’t the first Clarabell: the original was Bob Keeshan, who went on to become Captain Kangaroo, who presided over his own set of zanies. He’s dead, too.

Just for the record: the fifties sucked. Did I say sucked? They weren’t that good. The Howdy Doody Show, which began in 1947 when most Americans didn’t own a teevee set, was actually viewed as a tremendous cultural achievement. It featured a closet pedophile whose idea of a good time was asking little kids in neatly pressed pants and laced shoes to pull his finger. They did, of course, day after day, while Clarabell the painted clown honked his horn to mimic the fart sound. Great fun.

Speaking of farts, Eisenhower was president. Ask your grandpa. His VP was Tricky Dick Nixon, who stunk even worse, but it took the flushing of Watergate to reveal it.

The fifties themselves had a distinct odor. They reeked of gasoline, greasy fries and burnt fatty hamburgers, Brylcreem hair tonic, Lucky Strikes (everybody smoked back then), vinyl car seats, and pure unadulturated paranoia. Grease oozed from every pore: fashion dictated a thin shiny glaze on your skin. Every young adolescent bore zits; the older ones sported moonscape craters. The Cold War raged, and commies lurked under every rock. “Nonconformists” were called “queers,” and “homosexuals” were officially classified as sick. In point of fact, which is why I even bother, these times are much like those.

Ostensibly, Clarabell and the Howdy Doody Show bypassed all of this, which is why they’re even remembered today. They represented innocence, unblemished skin, pre-pubescent hairlessness, and sweet scented flesh. It was delusional, temporary, and shallow, of course, the very epitome of America in the fifties.

What I’m saying is, Lew Anderson might have died today, but Clarabell the Clown perished many, many years ago. Sorry, Lew. Thanks for the memories. But the era of your prominence stunk like ass, and the half century that separates us ain’t half enough.

Extra Credit Question: What is the origin of the title of this post? Ten points to the first one woth the correct answer.

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