Saturday, August 20, 2016
I had trouble thinking of a subject for this because of my overwhelming ennui, so I finally decided to write about that. Opening the notepad on my PC was a monumental effort. Writing the first paragraph caused me to make a series of extreme Charlton Heston faces. After getting this far, I had to take a break and think of even more things to not care about just to unwind.
I’m not really against ennui. I just find being permanently afflicted by it to be an inconvenience in my everyday life. There are things that you just have to care about in order to get by, and I just don’t care about any of them.
I do worry a lot, but I don’t think that’s the same as caring. My house got hit by near hurricane-force winds last week–there are huge limbs hanging out of my trees, my six-foot wooden fence blew down, a long strip of aluminum siding peeled right off the house, and my old 40-foot-tall TV antenna with a floodlight on it fell over. I should be out there right now doing something about it, but I just don’t care. Although I worry about the consequences, my thoroughly-ingrained ennui prevents me from taking any kind of positive action whatsoever.
I think I have an avoidance complex or something, which is an active factor in this. I avoid dealing with things, hoping that somehow they’ll just go away. Sometimes they do, but usually they don’t. Usually, more bad things just come along and pile up on top of the other ones, giving me even more things to both worry about and not care about. So when the inner turmoil and the emotional numbness that I simultaneously feel collide with each other, I can barely move except to eat or watch TV.
Actually, I think I really do care about all that stuff, but I just can’t muster a normal reaction to it. It’s like being Jack Webb after a lobotomy. Imagine Jack Webb just sitting there with that “Joe Friday” face but not saying or doing anything. Then imagine some hairy, pot-smoking hippy in a paisley shirt, granny glasses, and purple bellbottoms telling Joe Friday that drugs are cool and that getting stoned and running over kids and old people in his hippy van is fun, and Joe Friday just looking at him like he was a vase with daffodils in it. That’s pretty much it right there.
I do care about Jack Webb, though. I love Jack Webb. I watch Jack Webb movies and “Dragnet” reruns all the time. Jack Webb is my hero. When I think about Jack Webb, my ennui slowly begins to evaporate like beads of sweat on Rosie O’Donnell’s ass. Whenever I’m faced with indecision, I think, “What would Jack Webb do?”
Unfortunately, this doesn’t help very often, because the decisions I have to make in my life are rarely the kind of decisions that a guy like Jack Webb would have to make. Like whether to blow my monthly entertainment budget on the “My Neighbor Totoro” DVD or the “Big, Bouncing Boobies” DVD. I’m sure Jack Webb probably saw plenty of big, bouncing boobies in real life. And he wouldn’t have watched “My Neighbor Totoro” if it came with a free fifth of Old Crow, a carton of smokes, and a blowjob. Come to think of it, “what would Jack Webb do?” doesn’t really help me at all in my everyday life. Why the hell am I talking about Jack Webb?
Monday, December 14, 2015
Hello. My name's Forrest, Forrest Gump. One day I was sittin' on this old tree stump down by the road right after I had put my little boy, Li'l Forrest, on the school bus to school because he was goin' to school and the school bus was goin' there too, and so I figured I might as well put him on it so that they could both go there togethah. To school, that is.
I had just been in a movie about me called FORREST GUMP and the movie ended with me a-sittin' right there on that old stump just thinkin' and ponderin' about what all had happened to me durin' my life and evah thang. And the movie had ended with me sittin' right there on that old stump, and so now here I still am. I guess it was time to end that part of my story and start another one like they do on TV when there's a commercial in between parts.
There may have been a commercial in between these parts too, I don't know. You only know about those kinds of things if you're watchin' it, not if you're bein' in it yourself. If there was a commercial I hope it was a commercial for Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, because Bubba was my best good friend and his pitcha is on evah jar of Bubba Gump Shrimp, and for a limited time only you can send in for your very own life-size Bubba ventriloquist dummeh and put on your own Bubba puppet shows.
I used to just mow the football field with my ridin' lawn mowah but now in addition to that I put on Bubba puppet shows for the children of the town of Greenbow, Alabama. But since I do both of those things at the same time, and since I'm goin' back and forth on my lawn mowah, the children have to run after me in order to keep up with what's goin' on with my Bubba puppet show.
Well, the bad thing is that the children get tired runnin' up and down the football field, followin' aftah me to keep up with the Bubba puppet show, so I kinda have to turn around and start runnin' aftah them while I'm doin' it, and that seems to scare them for some reason. Also since the motah is so loud I kinda have to scream out all the words that me and Bubba are supposed to be sayin' to each other during the show.
I don't know why little children would be scared to see me chasin' aftah them on a ridin' lawn mowah with a big ol' life-size Bubba ventriloquist dummeh on my knee and both of us screamin' at each othah at the top of our lungs, but for some curious reason it show does. Momma always said that when somethin' happens then it show does happen, and show nuff it does. That's all I have to say about that.
So ennaways I was drivin' my lawn mowah aftah some little kids who was runnin' for their lives and I was screamin' "HOWDY BUBBA, HOW YOU DOIN' TODAY" and Bubba was screamin' "OH, AHM DOIN' JESS FINE FORRES', AND HEY, DO YOU KNOW WHAT ALL DIFF'RENT KINDA SHRIMPS THEY IS" and I screamed "NO BUBBA, HOW MANY IS THEY" and Bubba screamed "WELL THEY'S, UHH, SHRIMP SAM-WICH, SHRIMP PATTIES, SHRIMP COOKIES, SHRIMP 'SGHETTI, SHRIMP ICEBOX PIE, SHRIMP 'NANA SPLIT, SHRIMP SHAKES, SHRIMP ADE, SHRIMP NOG, SHRIMP EGGS BACON AND SHRIMP, SHRIMP EGGS SAUSAGE SPAM AND SHRIMP, SHRIMP SHRIMP SHRIMP SHRIMP SHRIMP AND SHRIMP..."
Well, by this time the screaming and shrieking children had all outrun me an' Bubba which was okay since I had made a wrong turn at the end of the football field and crashed through a big ol' picture window and right into the old folks' home. I couldn't stop since mah brakes had burnt out but the old folks was doin' a fine job of runnin' for their lives on their canes and walkahs and wheelchay-uhs so I just went right on ahead and started screamin' out my Bubba puppet show fuh them instead.
"...SHRIMP BRAN, SHRIMP MUSH, SHIMP 'N' PRUNES, SHRIMP-LAX..."
It was a fine day, and when I met the school bus that aftahnoon Li'l Forrest come bouncin' offa there with all kinds of stories he'd heard that day about a crazy insane psycho ridin' around on a lawn mowah just like mine and screamin' his head off at a big life-size Bubba dummeh just like mine and scarin' all the little children and the old folks half to death, and I thought "My! I shore am glad I didn't run inta that there fella."
Saturday, August 1, 2015
In a startling development today, Porfle Popnecker today released a statement today.
The statement, which he made, was his. It was also made by him, being that it was his statement, which he made and which was made by him and on his behalf by himself, in relation to the statement that he, not you, but he, and nobody else, made.
The statement, which he made today, was made by him today. When asked today if it had been made yesterday, a source close to the story confirmed today that no, it had not been made yesterday but had indeed been made today instead of yesterday, when it was not made, in lieu of being made today.
Here, in its entirety, is the statement:
Please continue to watch this space for further updates, rebuttals, clarifications, bundt cake recipes, or free lifetime memberships to your local bowling alley. This has been a Filmways presentation.
Saturday, June 6, 2015
(Here's an oldie from 2008. This is one of the first "Porfle Vs." things that I ever wrote. You may not even remember the ads that it refers to.)
I keep seeing these ads that say “Are you a celebrity? It’s scary accurate to see what celebrity you are. Find out now!” I wasn’t quite sure I fully understood this “scary accurate” concept, so I threw caution to the wind and clicked on one of the ads.
The first thing that happened was that I was asked for my gender and given the usual two choices–male or female. I clicked “male”, since I didn’t want to find out that I was Angelina Jolie or Rosie O’Donnell. That would be scary inaccurate.
My sexual identity thus firmly established, I was taken to a page which featured the first question in my quest to find out which celebrity I am. Question number one was:
1. Do you like to sing or act?
Hmm, I thought. This is a pretty shrewd question. Not only does it narrow things down considerably, but it also covers just about everything that it takes to be considered a “celebrity.” After all, celebrities either sing, act, or do “other” things. In fact, some sing AND act. But I couldn’t choose both simultaneously, so I chose “other.” Already I was beginning to suspect that I might be Dean Martin, or maybe even Sylvester Stallone, since I have seen both of them sing and act–sometimes at the same time!
Having entered this vital information into the website’s database, I was then presented with Question number two in my quest for scary accuracy:
2. Select what you do in your spare time?
a. Party around the world
b. Wear a disguise to everday activities
c. Start a charity
d. Adopt children from third world countries
e. Something else…
“Select what you do in your spare time?” That’s not a question, it’s an imperative with a question mark stuck at the end instead of a period. Sort of like if you’re robbing a liquor store and you say, “Give me all your money?” It sounds like you’re giving the guy a choice, and chances are he’s going to choose not to give you all of his money.
Anyway–I’m not really capable of partying around the world, because I can’t afford to go anywhere. I don’t really participate in any everyday activities either, unless you count urinating off my front porch whenever it gets dark enough. And a disguise would be rather unnecessary for that unless my neighbors are spying on me with night-vision goggles, which, come to think of it, I’ve often suspected them of doing but could never prove anything conclusively. And if I disguised myself as, say, Bill Gates, my neighbors would still find it odd to see Bill Gates urinating off my front porch.
Starting a charity is right out, since I don’t really care about anybody besides myself. Adopting children from third world countries? Nope…I’m afraid that, despite my gender specification, I might find out that I really am Angelina Jolie after all. That would just be scary, period. No, the only thing I really like to do in my spare time is f**k off. Hey, that would qualify as “something else”! I’m well on my way to a scary accurate celebrity match-up!
So far these questions were really zeroing in on what makes me tick–in fact, I was already getting kind of scared–and I was looking forward to Question number three, where all of this clever cross-questioning would really start to come together. Question number three:
3. Enter your first name.
Umm…not really a question either, is it? And I wasn’t sure what my first name would have to do with what celebrity I am. If my first name was Charles, would that give me more in common with someone like Charles Manson than it would, say, Merv Griffin? Confused and disoriented, I rebelled against what I considered the irrelevant nature of the “question” and simply typed in something self-descriptive. Surely this would be more useful to whatever artificial intelligence was at work evaluating my answers and determining which celebrity my similarity to would be the most scarily accurate. And so, on to Question number four:
4. Shit Head, enter your cell phone number below to find out if you are an up and coming celebrity!
Again, not really a question. Okay, I guess it is, sorta, but shouldn’t it read “What’s your cell phone number, Shit Head?” I mean, really, what’s the point of calling these “questions” if they’re not even going to state them in the form of-hey, wait a minute! My cell phone number? WTF?
At that point, my mind began to travel back…back…back to a block of tiny print on page one called “Summary Terms.” I had only given this a cursory glance at first, because, of course, I was so darned excited about finding out which celebrity I am. “Hey, maybe I’m Brad F**kin’ Pitt!” I remember thinking with childlike glee. With this in mind, I returned to page one, put on my reading glasses, and scanned the Summary Terms, only this time I took note of phrases such as “by signing up for this service…you acknowledge that you are subscribing to our service…$5.99 per week…$19.99 per month…will appear on your wireless bill…”
Yikes! This was undoubtedly the scariest thing I had encountered thus far. As much as I desperately wanted to know what celebrity I was, I wasn’t willing to actually pay a wet red cent to find out. Besides, what kind of “service” might this be in the first place, exactly? Would I require frequent updates to keep track of what celebrity I happen to morph into from one day to the next? Like, am I Johnny Depp one moment and then I glance in the mirror and I’m suddenly Seth Green or Barry White? Wut up wit dat, yo?
So I went back to Question number four and entered a fake cell phone number, hoping that this would fool the Super Computer enough to whip up a celebrity match for me and finally come across with some free info, dagnab it.
There was no Question number five. There was only an instruction for me to enter the special PIN number that had just been sent to the fake phone number I had just entered. If it really happened to be somebody else’s cell phone number, then some other guy was getting my special PIN number, and being matched up with MY celebrity, dammit! “HEY, I’M BRUCE F**KIN’ WILLIS!” he’s probably gloating to his stupid friends at this very moment. “WOW, IS THAT SCARY ACCURATE OR WHAT!” The rotten bastard! CRAP! I’ll bet he can’t even sing or act, either! JERK! MARICÓN! GRRRRR!!! Su madre es PUTA!!!!!!!!!
I don’t know–maybe I’m Jack Nicholson. Surely after all this, he’d have whipped out his nine-iron by now and started bashing the hell out of something. But no, that’s not me–I’m not quite that demonstrative. I’d probably just bug my eyes out, purse my lips, and get all agitated while hopping around and making fake karate moves. So I think my most scary accurate celebrity match-up would probably be Don Knotts. But now I’ll never know, unless I can track down the big, fat jerk who’s running around with my fake PIN number and being Bruce F**kin’ Willis.
Monday, November 17, 2014
We--that is, I, Catherine Earnshaw, my brother Hindley, our maid Nellie Dean, Mumsie, and various other minor characters who aren't that important to the narrative--had waited long and with keen anticipation for the return of my father, Mr. Earnshaw, who had been expected back from his travels that morning.
But now that the midnight hour had come and gone, we wondered if he would appear that night at all. And as time dragged inexorably onward and boredom set in, we had, in fact, begun to lose interest in whether or not he would return or simply stay gone. I'd even found myself nursing a faint hope that something terrible had happened to him such as being eaten alive by a grizzly bear, or alligators, despite the fact that there were none living in England at that time.
Perhaps, I thought, being waylaid by highwaymen and having his head staved in would suffice, as would simply losing his footing in the dark of the rough, windy moors and falling off a cliff. But as the dreary darkness slowly gave way to a cold, approaching dawn, we heard the hoofbeats of Mr. Earnshaw's steadfast old horse Groucho growing nearer to their beloved Withering Heights at last.
Misjudging the distance, Mr. Earnshaw and his steed crashed through the front window of the aged but still warm and inviting mansion which served as our respite from the chilly, almost ghostly maelstrom of unending elemental unrest which we fondly referred to as "the weather" there upon the misty, musty moors which we often trod searching for rock lobsters. The fact that we had never found any rock lobsters and never would, since the Heights were well inland, was merely a frivolous... uhh... oh, never mind. I forgot what I was talking about.
Anyway, Mr. Earnshaw flew backward out of the saddle with the smooth, seemingly intentional grace of a Hollywood stunt performer (which we, of course, had no knowledge of because "Hollywood" had yet to exist for at least two centuries or so) and somersaulted in mid-air right into the large black pot of tomato and roadkill stew that Nellie had been stirring with a canoe oar over a roaring flame in the fireplace.
Thick crimson slop splattered and steamed all over the walls and drenched those nearest the cook pot in rich, savory lunch. The galloping steed, in a state of panic, destroyed every stick of furniture in the room before exiting out the back window and clip-clopping off into the distance, never to be seen again.
Hindley, his face oozing with liquid tomato and other nameless substances, was the most perturbed by the event. He had been expecting Mr. Earnshaw to bring him a piano from London but could tell even from the brief glimpse he'd gotten before the old man disappeared into the stew pot that he carried nothing of the sort beneath his billowing cloak.
In fact, the only thing he'd been carrying was even now clambering out of the pot along with the old man. It was a filthy young street urchin, a boy of Hindley's age but hardly of an equal social standing and thus fit only for endless ridicule and being a fun archery target.
"BLAR har har!!!" exclaimed the old man, cleaning himself off with a squeegee and flinging the excess toward Mumsie, who spluttered in dismay as the great globs came flying right at her face with alarming accuracy. "Look whut I brung yah from the boggy banks of London town! It's a boy named, uhh...err...Porfle!"
"Porfle?" Hindley sneered witheringly. "What the actual flying f***?"
"Oh, all right then," said the old man. "We'll call him Heathcliff, although I was saving that name for the dog."
"We'll call him Porfcliff!" I offered brightly, instantly falling in love with the ragged, horribly ugly, and most likely diseased wretch whom Father had so thoughtfully brought us as a gift. "Oh frabjous day! Hey nonny-nonny, hey nonny!"
"Yes?" said Nonny, sticking her head through the kitchen window. We'd forgotten all about her being there, as we always did since we had no idea who the hell she was anyway.
"Oh, little Cathy," said Mr. Earnshaw. "Leave it to you to come up with the wisest solution to the matter. Yes, he shall be known henceforth as Porfcliff...Porfcliff Earnshaw."
"NO!" Hindley spat indignantly. "I'll not share my last name, much less my legacy, with this BEAST! This disgusting, boil-ridden TROLL! He shall be called Popnecker. Porfcliff Popnecker. You know, like the hemorrhoid ointment." Father nodded gravely, conceding that Popnecker's Hemorrhoid Ointment had indeed been a most welcome application during more than a few distressing "incidents."
And so my one great love in life, Porfcliff Popnecker, became the most wretched creature to drag his filth-encrusted carcass over the floorboards and cobblestones of Withering Heights, constantly working twenty-four hours a day and sometimes overtime at milking the cows and horses and shearing the warthogs and herding the sheep by running around on all fours barking at them (the dog Heathcliff was still a puppy although Porfcliff was training him) and teaching the horses how to dance and shearing the warthogs and driving the cows to Cow School and shaving the warthogs who didn't like to be sheared and generally doing all of the chores that Hindley felt were beneath him, which were all of them, especially if they had anything whatsoever to do with warthogs.
But the thing that made it all worthwhile for Porfcliff was the fact that I loved him more than the sound of Boston cream pies crashing into a mirrored display case full of fine-china-encased hemorrhoid ointments during a llama stampede (a recurring dream that I tended to have whenever I ate fifty hardboiled eggs right before bedtime) and that we would often go romping around across the grassy, windy moors whenever Hindley would give him five minutes vacation every six months.
"I LOVE YOU, PORFCLIFF!" I would say, and he would say "I LOVE YOU, CATHY!", and then we would both say "I LOVE YOU, HEATHCLIFF!" and Heathcliff would say "WOOF! WOOF!" and we would run and run and run until we were, like, sixty or seventy miles away from the Heights and Father would have to send a carriage for us.
In fact, it took us forever to learn to run back and forth instead of simply hauling ass in a straight line until we were in the next county and nobody would feed us or let us sleep in their houses or whatever because they didn't know who the hell we were. "HELP US!!!" I would implore, and they wouldn't help us, so Porfcliff and I HAD to make their houses go on fire!
Anyway, one day out of curiosity I visited our neighbors the Lintons at the Grange next door and they took me in and made a "lady" out of me and I felt like I was too good for Porfcliff all of a sudden so he ran away and didn't come back until he was rich, but by that time I'd married Edgar Linton so Porfcliff got revenge against, like, everybody.
But especially against Edgar Linton, whom Porfcliff referred to as "Poop Head", and Hindley, whose debts Porfcliff bought off, making him master of the Heights, and whom Porfcliff also referred to as "Poop Head." And then a whole bunch of other really sad and tragic stuff happened, and we all died, the end.
But country folk who yet live out on the moors would swear on their Bibles that, to this day, they can hear the ghostly voices of those tortured souls buried in the unquiet earth of the old churchyard, voices still swirling around over the squishy, splooshy moors like the blustery wind, sighing and moaning and screaming "HELP US!!!" and "I LOVE YOU, HEATHCLIFF!" and "WOOF! WOOF!"
Friday, July 25, 2014
WARNING: GRAPHIC HORROR!!!
One day, my nephew Billy had a birthday party. His mom, Elaine, and a few of her other "mom" friends helped coordinate it. Eight or nine of Billy’s little school and/or neighborhood friends were invited, most of them between the ages of five and seven. A few fun games were planned, like "pin the tail on the donkey" and "toss a beanbag at the empty-can pyramid", followed by a yummy ice-cream-and-cake treat and the opening of Billy’s birthday presents.
It sounded like a potentially fun-filled party for the children, and it most likely would’ve been, too, if only Johnny Cash’s reanimated corpse hadn’t shown up uninvited and disrupted everything.
How he came back to life and why he picked this particular house to show up at remain a mystery. Yet there he was, right between little Sally Feldman and Eddie Green in the line of children filing through the front door for the party. The children should have been giddy with happy anticipation for the coming festivities as they entered the house in their nice party clothes, but instead they were mortally terrified of the shambling, gibbering corpse in their midst.
Needless to say, Johnny Cash looked pretty horrible. Already in a fairly-advanced state of decomposition, the deceased country-music legend was more ghastly-looking than the Frankenstein monster, and his burial clothes were split up the back to clearly reveal his big, warty ass, which somehow just seemed to make things worse.
Billy’s mom and the other moms stood frozen in raw, naked fear as Johnny Cash lurched toward them, his hideous face contorting and convulsing as he attempted to speak. But all that came from his festering mouth were blood-chilling croaks like "bllnnggff" and "guhhh-uhhhh." The children, now well beyond the point of thinking that this might merely be some kind of party entertainment, began to hide behind various items of furniture and cower in whimpering terror.
Johnny Cash looked around in confusion, as though he himself dimly realized that he belonged in the grave and had no business walking around like this. All at once, his bulging eyeballs focused on something familiar. There, leaning against a wall in the corner, was Billy’s guitar. It wasn’t a real guitar, but one of those little plastic toy guitars that plays a tinkly tune when you turn the crank. But Johnny Cash made a horrible croaking sound of recognition and grabbed it up.
"Guh GAHHH, gnog nggghh NAAAHHH!" he croaked obscenely, attempting to entertain his captive audience as he had so often done in life. He banged clumsily at the guitar, stomping his feet as he staggered from one shrinking spectator to the next. "Plink-plonk" went the fragile plastic strings of the toy guitar as Johnny Cash’s dead hands clawed tunelessly at them, ripping them asunder one by one. "Mmmfff, GAAAAHHHH HAAAAAAA!" he gurgled, trying to sing the remnants of "Folsom Prison Blues" that his rotting brain still retained.
And then, he saw the cake. The beautiful, rich, gooey cake. He remembered that he should love the cake, be hungry for the cake. Tossing what was left of Billy’s guitar aside, Johnny Cash lurched toward the gaily-decorated dining table and plunged his hands into the cake, ramming huge gobs of it into his mouth. "RAAAAR! GRAAAAAR! MLAAARFF!" he gibbered, slobbering cake, his face dripping with frosting.
Some of the candy letters that had spelled out "HAPPY BIRTHDAY BILLY" were stuck to Johnny Cash’s face, and they now spelled "YIRPAL DRIB." He vaguely remembered that he should now be thirsty for some of the sweet, refreshing punch that filled the large bowl on the table and made a diving grab for it, losing his balance and crashing through the table as the punchbowl landed upside-down on his head like some horrible space helmet.
Johnny Cash staggered to his feet, covered in frosty cake and dripping with once-festive punch, the huge glass bowl wobbling on his head, and lunged for the gaily-beribboned presents that sat in a pile waiting for the birthday boy to open them. In what was inexplicably left of Johnny Cash’s clouded mind, HE was the birthday boy. Emitting a series of horrendous barks that sounded like a herd of seals being run over by a steamroller, he ripped into the presents and came up triumphantly with a happily-grinning "Danny O’Day" ventriloquist dummy.
Johnny Cash thrust his hand into the dummy’s back and worked the controls, making its toothy mouth snap open and shut as he screamed "GARRR-GAAAAAAR! MUFFF WUFFF! NNNGGGGFFFFF!" He staggered from child to child, proudly performing the most hellish ventriloquism act imaginable for their entertainment. To this day, my nephew Billy still has nightmares of an insanely-grinning Danny O’Day croaking "BLAAAR GNNARRRRR!" at him, and wakes up in the middle of the night screaming "YIRPAL DRIB!!!"
Anyway, Johnny Cash’s reanimated corpse finally left. I don’t know what happened after that, because the phone rang while Elaine was telling me about it, and it was her husband telling her that there was a guy on his way to their house to fix the garbage disposal, and she had to go let him in. Not long after that, I heard something about Chris Farley’s reanimated corpse showing up at some Jewish kid’s bar mitzvah in Houston, Texas, but I don’t know if this was part of a mysterious pattern of some kind, or just an unrelated event.