Sunday, October 31, 2010

In Which I Mourn Not Only The Future Of Television Advertising, But A Grizzly And A Really Good Place For Dinner (We Are Nothing If Not Eclectic)

I feel as if it's been a while since I've had a good Brain Cleanse, although I have to admit that I've not been shy about just flinging forth most of my Cerebral Bother at Whomever Is In Its Line Of Fire. My Inner Curmudgeon is pretty much Out, brought to the fore by job stress, omnipresent political ads, clueless dog owner neighbors who, since they cannot control the one yappy dog they already own, have naturellement purchased another, and an ongoing feud with my hair.

But, since it would be Selfish Of Me not to keep you informed, dear readers, let's see what's left for me to nudge out of my grey matter's nooks and crannies.

One continual source of irritation and confusion to me is the commercials for Cialis. You know the ones: a married couple of a certain age are performing a rather mundane household chore like laundry or painting or meal prep. Suddenly, they happen to catch each other's gaze or touch each other's hand. They smile a bit knowingly. The narrator intones: "An everyday moment can turn romantic at a moment's notice." Then, the confines of the house move away magically and they are transformed into an outdoor scene like a beach, forest, or waterfall's edge. The couple are sitting together, caressing. The narrator continues, "With Cialis, you can be ready anytime the moment is right." Okay, how many of you, really, equate outdoors with sex? What was the thought process here, and who did the marketing research for this campaign, The United States Department of the Interior? The U.S. National Parks Service? Smokey the Bear? I don't know about you, but making love at the beach or in the woods presents a set of issues that...well, are not optimal (sand, pine needles, dirt, leaves, etc. Ouch. ). And exactly what kind of exhibitionists are these Middle-Agers anyway that they can't just Do It in the house? Weirdos.

I'll be brief with this one and try not to rant overmuch here about the First Christmas Commercial appearing on OCTOBER 8TH. Which, for those of you scoring at home, is before even HALLOWEEN. The winner this year is KMart, who was hawking their layaway program. (And no, they do not get a pass because technically "layaway" is, by nature, an early Christmas shopping program. There were obvious Christmassy things in the commercial. Verboten!) To say that I was/still am outraged is to vastly understate it. That opened the floodgates, and we have since been deluged with "Holiday Season" ads from eleventy thousand retailers. I received this morning with my Sunday Plain Dealer the Toys *R* Us Big Christmas Toy Book. Pardon me while I projectile vomit all over everything in protest.

On a sad note, my Cleveland Metroparks Zoo recently announced the death of one of its grizzly bears. We had two male grizzlies at our zoo, a father and son, and the one who died, the parent, had been ill for a while. He had already lived a long 35 years, reaching well beyond the uppermost end of the average life cycle of a grizzly in captivity. I mention this story mainly because of the names of these two grizzlies, which I think are absolutely perfect. Please pause a moment with me to mourn the loss of Lester and to wish the best for his son, Warren.

Also sad for me, but in a different way is the loss of Bar Symon, owned by Cleveland's own Iron Chef, Michael Symon. Rick and I liked this nearby restaurant where I could get an incredible marrow bone appetizer, perfect with an ice cold vodka martini. We didn't have to drive into downtown Cleveland or wait forever for a table to get Cheffy Food. Now it's closed--it was in a dying strip mall in a so-so location--and we're back to the Dinner Conundrum every Friday night. (Quick story: Once, a particularly cute waiter at Bar Symon was dancing to the music between table-waiting for most of our dinner stay. He was really getting into it, busting some serious moves. When we left, I sought him out and tucked a couple bucks into his apron. "Thanks for making my dinner so enjoyable," I told him. He laughed and said, "Hey, you're welcome! I'll be here all week!")

And so will I. Please show your appreciation in the usual way. Thank you. Thank you very much. ;-)

Monday, October 25, 2010

teaparty Prodigy Of The Week: Brevity Is The Soul Of Signage


Listen, teaparty Sign Carrier. Key word here: SIGN. If you have to explain all that crap, then it's just way too busy. Save it for when you all go out later and get drunk on Bud Lites and you're standing around the pickup trucks and you can say, "You know what the Obama Presidency is like? It's like this bigass wall that Obama built between us and the gubmint. And it's all fortified-like, and its mortar is made up of Obamacare's health plan that he forced on us! YEAH! That's the ticket! And, and, and...we need a Superhero, like Ronald Reagan again to come and say...what was that now? Um...buuuurp!, not that. Um, Mr. Obama, tear down that wall! We the people have been taxdeded enough already. Yeah. What? Oh, yeah. Gimme me another Bud Lite."

Monday, October 18, 2010

Even On A Getaway Weekend, There Are Some Things From Which One Can Never Get Away...

Scene opens in room of Canadian inn. Rick and Nance are snuggled in bed. It is early morning. The room is slightly chilly.

Nance: (stretches, then quickly huddles back under covers) This is the worst part of the morning. I hate getting out of bed and washing my hair. Too cold. I get chilled. It's why I don't take a whole shower in the morning and take a bath at night.

Rick: (with a sleepy attempt at being comforting) I know.

Nance: (brightly) What if I could snap off my head and give it to you? Then you could just wash my hair for me. Let's say it could be done. Would you do it? Let's break it down into a percentage. What percent of the time would you wash my hair for me?

Rick: (wary; looks at Nance from the corners of his eyes) What, now?

Nance: Would it make a difference if I took away the talking part? If my head couldn't talk?

Rick: You mean it couldn't boss me around and tell me what I was doing wrong or what shampoo to use and all that?

Nance: Yes. The head snaps off and it can't talk. What percentage of the time would you take my head and wash my hair?

Rick: Ten percent.

Nance: (shocked; incredulous; dismissive at this point) Ten percent!? You have got to be kidding! I took the talking part out! I take out the talking and you give me a lousy ten percent?

Rick: Well, how often would you wash my snapped-off head?

Nance: Never.

Rick: Well, then!

Nance: But, come on! You knew that! Look at your head! It's so big and cumbersome. And your hair is so thick. And I take tub baths. When would I shampoo it? No one shampoos in the tub! TEN PERCENT! That's insulting to me, really, when you come right down to it. Ten percent. There are three hundred and sixty-five days in a year. You're talking about a lousy thirty-six days that you would shampoo my silent head for me. That's it. Ridiculous.

Rick: (calmly) I really didn't think you would take the time to do the math.

Nance: Apparently. But I did. I did the math and that's ten percent. I cannot believe that you wouldn't take my silent, snapped-off head into the shower with you more often than that to spare me the discomfort that you know I endure when it's so cold in the morning. My silent head!

Rick: I wish it was silent right now.
End scene.

Friday, October 08, 2010

Is It Just Me? Or...

I had Sam take this picture for me at the mall where he works. It's at a pretzel place. Apparently, one owned by or represented by...wait for it...teaparty interests.

Couldn't resist. Be back soon with a proper post.

Friday, October 01, 2010

teaparty Prodigy Of The Week: $tupid Is As Stupid Do

Naturally, there's so much to chat about in this picture, it's all I can do to restrain myself.

Yet, I shall.

Let's confine ourselves to merely discussing/dissecting the obviously inept attempt by the woman on our far right (in the ill-fitting and inappropriate white V-neck teeshirt) at making a coherent sign.

We all know that when someone begins with the disclaimer, "I'm not a racist" that we are due in short order to hear something most certainly racist, or at the very least, racially insensitive or culturally ignorant. And here in front of us is a mob of Caucasian individuals--albeit bored and disengaged-looking ones--clustered around, carrying signs aimed at what is surely a non-Caucasian group of people, telling them all that they need to be forcibly removed.

Our next talking point has to be the use of the dollar sign for the "S" in the word "racists." I don't get it. What's the message there? "We're not mercenary and we're not racists, so there's that, too"? "Hey! We could be money-hungry racists, but we're just the regular old middle-class kind of racists who give to charity, so give us a break here"? Is it some sort of Racists' Code? Help me out here. Am I just stupid?

Finally, for those of you who are sitting at your computers/mobile devices incredulously, shouting, "HOLY CRAP! COULD NANCE NOT HAVE NOTICED THAT RACISTS IS SPELLED INCORRECTLY!?": patience is a virtue. I'm getting there.

What would a Prodigy Of The Week post be without misspelling? And this one has two errors to taunt us: the egregious "RA$CISTS" as well as the ever-so cringeworthy misuse of "your," which is so awful, so execrable, so horrifying that I'm not even sure it is a spelling error as much as it is a usage error or just a donkeyheaded mistake by yet another doodah hepped up on Fox and WalMart two-liters.

Hey, you ersatz raci$t lady. Your are idiotic.
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