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Archive for April, 2007

The following is the first part in a multi-part series that every American should read and memorize or they are simply not American, but merely Canadians wanting to be Americans, or as the French-Canadians say, poseurs.

            

We here at OmnipresenceMedia™ (a subsidiary of OmniGlobalCorp Industrialized Inc. Concern LTD™ and Sandy’s Homemade Sugar Cookies) are pleased to announce the release of an amazing and highly enticing documentary series. Sprawling in scope, focused in intention and aim, perhaps the greatest documentary this, or any other all-knowing media conglomerate, have ever produced. Based upon the National Bestseller The Greatest Century by noted historian and expert on Swedish hot tub culture, Percy Waugh , the series chronicles the most important and spectacular events in the 20th Century. Mr. Waugh, who also narrates the documentary, said the following regarding this monumental series: “The 20th Century is The Greatest Century. All the other ones are pretty shitty in comparison.” Boundless and inspiring, rampant and overblown, the 20th century is laid out before you, withering in glorious excess. The shimmering corners of its beginning and end are offered up in digestible entrails of stock footage and reenacted dramatizations that recede into the background of the mind, until they are lodged there, with you until your last breath―ever lasting. Now half a decade removed, we can gaze upon the 20th century with loving eyes and open pocket books. Here are just a handful of segments included in this wonderful series.                       

The Opening of the Greatest Century    

At the opening of the 20th century, in a European country with a fair measure of sun and considerable amounts of rich black coffee, a calendar is turned by a smallish hand. The hand is wrinkled and creased in places, darkened by the sun, knuckles slightly displaced, the fingers worn by many years of labor. There is suppleness to them however, the freckles upon the skin like spots on a leopard. They are attached to woman of vast intellect and great bosom. She envisions her life spread out before her: innumerable joys yet to come and countless bakeries the world over selling her one-of-a-kind chocolate cakes and amazingly life-like wigs for women and men. The Greatest Century has begun.                                         

Teddy Bears 

 

Theodore Roosevelt, as part of his massive presidential marketing machine, creates life-sized dolls of himself to give to children at parades and public events. Children are subsequently frightened by the intensely realistic dolls, and refuse to leave their rooms. An over-zealous presidential aide with a background in marketing and sewing develops the “The Teddy Bear”, a plush, stuffed bear with black eyes as deep and infinite as space. The aide insists that the White House pull the Theodore Roosevelt dolls and replace them with his new creation. President Roosevelt begrudgingly agrees and the Teddy Bear is released to a nation full of fingers scratching heads. Roosevelt thinks the aide an idiot, and promptly fires him. However, years later, the Teddy Bear becomes the highest selling item since the light bulb. Edison stands in the corner of his lab, envious; furiously shaking his fists at nothing in particular.                                      

The Artist Bound 

Marcel Duchamp is revealed as a fraud, and, subsequently, all artistic movements ending in “ism”, such as Surrealism, Dadaism, Futurism and the regrettably short lived Lardism, are suppressed. Duchamp is consequently imprisoned on Elba in a room with no urinals.                                       

 Softly, Reclining 

America slips into the Great Depression. Alarmed, the government consults various psychiatrists and universities. Therapy sessions ensue. Much is made of the United States’ early years, its colonial upbringing. England’s frequent absence in that upbringing is also examined as a factor in the collective malaise. Other aspects are investigated, including the combined Ego and Id of the population. The country reclines and unburdens itself. Anti-depressants are prescribed by a team of young, arrogant pharmacologists, who―some say―have something to prove. The country awaits improvement. FDR speaks into a large microphone and says that America has “nothing to fear, but fear itself”. At the request of the Mental Health Establishment, many scientists, each holding several degrees, subsequently study fear itself. Progress is made. It is duly determined that we should not fear fear itself, because fear itself is lonely and vulnerable just like the rest of us. It too would like a woolen blanket wrapped around it and a glass of warm milk, a deep hug and tender, comforting words whispered into its ears. 

To Be Continued…

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In the grand tradition of cleaning out one’s closets, here’s story of mine regarding reality TV that was published a few years back on the now defunct humor website, Haypenny. Ahhh, reality programming was so innocent back then. In fact, I think some of the programs listed are actual TV shows now. Didn’t I just see Fake Baboon Ass and House Demolition Challenge on The Learning Channel the other day…

The Unrelenting March of Reality TV Programming into the Infinite: A Preview of the 2004 Reality TV Lineup

NBC

Who Wants To Date My Dog’s Chew Toy?
NBC’s programming is going to the dogs in 2004- literally! In the network’s upcoming reality show, Who Wants to Date My Dog’s Chew Toy?, the Hanson family from Portland, Oregon wants to find the perfect match for their dog Sprinkles’ chew toy, a slightly mangled and foul smelling plastic fire hydrant that squeaks gleefully when squeezed. Two contestants will each have an opportunity to take the chew toy on a date, which is filmed by the show’s camera crew and watched lived by the Hanson family. Who will the chew toy pick? The handsome young CPA or the dark, sultry Armenian trapeze artist with the nervous stomach? Notoriously slow witted and unable to make a decision, the chew toy gazes blankly toward the heavens, where the desultory nature of this program will soon be revealed.

Tedium Factor
Contestants are placed in Dr. Sandra Manning’s waiting room, a dentist with a practice in Boston. The waiting room, uniformly bleak, is comprised of several potted ferns, an abundance of unflattering florescent light and instrumental versions of soft rock classics emanating from a speaker mounted on a corner wall. The participants are forced to wait for weeks for their appointments, reading extremely outdated copies of Good Housekeeping and Uber Sausage Monthly over and over. Eventually, one by one, they are dragged out of the waiting room-unconscious from the extreme boredom-by two burly gentlemen from the local Teamsters Union, leaving the winner, still conscious, to revel in their own unyielding glory. This one has a promising future indeed.

FOX

Who Wants To Marry Alexander Graham Bell?
Twenty beautiful women compete for the affections of Alexander Graham Bell, world renowned inventor of the telephone, and, to a lesser extent, the tomato powered alarm clock. Contestants engage in a series of rigorous and highly enticing competitions to win the affections of this obsessive celebrity. One woman removes the spleen of another only to replace it with a tapeworm. A former Miss Butter Queen from Wisconsin creates a diorama of the assassination of John F. Kennedy using nothing but discarded Popsicle sticks and a New York Times newspaper from the 1932. Alexander Graham Bell, unmoved by all of the attention, instead completes the invention he has been laboring over for many years, the nebulous Sensory Enlivening Unit™ and is duly carried off by a legion of pigeons, for which he, in the not too distant future, would be king.


CBS

Survivor Island: The Musical
Pioneering 80’s pop rock band Survivor is reunited, and subsequently placed on the Bikini Atoll in the Pacific. The band is made to perform, at gun point, every song in the Survivor catalogue in the style of musical theater, or be voted off the island by a panel of judges lead by revered Broadway star Bernadette Peters. Blisteringly dramatic renditions of “The Eye of the Tiger” and “The Search is Over” make this the musical theater/reunion/get-off-an-island-alive show everyone will want to see. In the weeks ahead the challenges become even greater when other 80’s pop rock bands including Journey, Foreigner and Loverboy are resurrected and dropped onto the island to compete with Survivor in a battle-royale that will end with the winning band mounting a revival of South Pacific, complete with ten warships hand carved from only the best pâté and 100 ostriches dressed in United States Navy dress attire. The search is over indeed.

Rich Little Search
This talent showcase is a behind the scenes look at the journey of people across America competing to eventually be crowed as The Best Impersonator of Rich Little Impersonating Someone Else. Several highlights include a man from Columbus, Ohio impersonating Rich Little impersonating the Pope, a woman from Trenton, New Jersey impersonating Rich Little impersonating a paper weight, and a chimpanzee named Henry, who lives at the San Diego Zoo, impersonating Rich Little impersonating the All Male London Vocal Choir doing their rendition of God Save the Queen. Hosted by Rich Little impersonating Dick Clark.

PBS

Wearing Gore Vidal Pants
Ordinary citizens are chosen at random to spend several glorious weeks wearing a selection of pants from the closet of famed historical novelist and actor Gore Vidal. Followed by a film crew, we watch as the participants gain intimate knowledge of what it’s like to live, day to day, in Gore Vidal’s pants. Highlights include a woman from Dallas, Texas, Sandy Brinkwater, spilling lemonade down the front of Gore Vidal’s Armani Collezioni Tan Stripe single-pleated pant at lunch, and then having to return to her office, only to be taunted by her co-workers for ‘peeing her pants’. Segments are inter-cut with acutely witty remarks by Gore Vidal direct from his study in Venice, Italy, as he sips warm brandy all the while wearing a filthy T-shirt and a pair of boxer shorts studded with bright red hearts. Delightful.

The Learning Channel

Fake Baboon Ass and House Demolition Challenge
Contestants strap plastic baboon asses around their real ones in a vigorous competition in which teams of four enter a stranger’s house, chosen at random, and completely demolish every room; tearing down drywall, setting fire to furniture and smashing any and all valuables into a fine dust. The plastic baboon asses light up when the teams complete certain tasks, and blink rapidly when they are running out of time. In addition, several well-dressed octogenarians of various temperaments and education award teams bonus points depending how ‘hip’ and ‘put together’ their attire is.

Sundance Channel

Project Make an Ironic Meta-film About the Making of the Making of a Film Within a Film That References Other Films and Pop Culture in General As if This is The First Time it Has Ever Been Done
Hollywood has had a long, glorious tradition of mounting many gala award shows celebrating its myth makers, as well as producing a cornucopia of fine films about the struggle to make movies. Now, La La Land once again strains its collective hairy arm patting itself on the back with this reality show hosted by noted annoying film geek, Quentin Tarantino. The winner of the contest, chosen from a submitted treatment of a proposed film, will be filmed making their meta-film about the making of the making of a film that is within a film…

ABC

Eisner and the Octopus
And finally, in perhaps the most endearing program of the 2004 reality TV line-up, Michael Eisner, CEO of Disney, buys a giant octopus and decides to keep it as a pet at his home in the Hollywood Hills. The show follows the zany antics of the lovable pair: Making bologna sandwiches at midnight, watching 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea in the media room and playing Marco Polo in the Olympic sized pool shaped like Mickey Mouse’s head. Tragically, this show’s undeniable promise will not be fully realized. Towards the end of the first episode the giant octopus inexplicably eats Eisner whole, and is then pursued down the Hollywood Hills by a gaggle of heavily armed and finely manicured police officers as it makes it way back to sea. Octopuses, Eisner should have realized, are invertebrates not to be trusted.

 

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Like the Queen Mary and the Titanic before it, this Website is about to set sail on a fantastic journey that will undoubtedly yield a vast mother-load of untold riches, riches much like those of multi-millionaires who dive into dollar sign-shaped swimming pools containing water sprinkled with a fine gold dust (if you don’t believe me look at any Richie Rich comic book).

Unlike other websites, however, I don’t sell wicker furniture, although at one time I did own a crocheted vest that seemed to invoke the very powers of the devil. I don’t have a MySpace page, nor do I have any plans on getting one in the future, I’ll leave that to people under 25 years of age, or people who wish that they were under 25 years of age but are, in reality, 43 and desperately alone, living in their parents basement, playing Supertramp over and over, wondering where it all went wrong. I know of no magic potions that will enhance the size of your penis (or your vagina, as the case may be) nor do I know the best way to consolidate your debt by buying muskrats in bulk. 

That said, there are wonders to be had here, most of which involve apes of various pelt-grades.

Excelsior!

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