Wednesday, October 31, 2012

PORFLE VS. STEPHEN KING




Stephen King is my favorite author, but that doesn't mean I don't get tired of him vacationing in my house for weeks on end.  He can afford to go anywhere he wants, but for some reason he likes it in my house.  One probable reason is that I make good cheese sandwiches. 

It's gotten to the point where he doesn't even ask nicely anymore--he just holds out his hand while watching TV or whatever, not even looking at me, and says, "Cheese sandwich."  I make the cheese sandwich, put it in his hand, and he starts eating it as though I didn't exist.  One of these days I'm going to hand him one of those microwave truck-stop cheese sandwiches just to see the look on his face when he bites into it.

He's mad at me because I don't have enough Stephen King movies on DVD.  I've tried to explain that there just aren't that many good Stephen King movies, but he thinks they're all good.  Sure, he said some of them weren't very good in "Danse Macabre."  But he keeps going through my DVD collection and whining, "How come you don't have 'Cujo'?  Where's 'Maximum Overdrive'?" 

All I have are "The Stand", "Creepshow", "The Green Mile", and "Carrie", which he's watched several dozen times.  I have a few more on videotape, but I have to run the VCR myself whenever he watches them because he thinks it has evil spirits in it.  He thinks my car has evil spirits in it, too, because it leaks oil and the radio doesn't work.  I think he's nuts, but I guess that's why he's such a good writer.

One night I fell asleep in my recliner and when I woke up, Stephen King was standing over me with that googly-eyed chipmunk grin on his face.  He pointed at me and said "I'm gonna scare the hell outta you!" and then ran off down the hallway laughing.  The next day he wrote "Delores Claiborne."  I read it but didn't think it was all that scary, and he sulked for a week.  So to get back at me, he started writing the screenplay for "Maximum Overdrive II: Second Gear" until I threatened to start buying an inferior brand of processed cheese-food slices. 

For the longest time, I was afraid to tell him that I think "The Shining" is one of the worst horror movies ever made.  We'd watch it over and over, and he'd gush "That was great, huh?" and I'd say, "Yeah, great."  Finally one night after we'd watched it for the umpteenth time he said "That was great, huh?" and I screamed "NO!  NO!  I HATE THAT MOVIE!  I HATE IT, I HATE IT, I HATE IT!!!"  He fled the house, crying, and I didn't see him again for two weeks. 

When he finally did show up again, he solemnly handed me a videotape without saying a word.  I put it in the VCR and turned it on.  A disheveled, visibly agitated Jack Nicholson glared angrily into the camera and growled, "You make me sick."  The next day, Stephen King completed his revenge against me by writing "The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon."

Right now, he's up in Maine somewhere doing who knows what, but he could show up again at any time.  I never know when.  I'm kind of scared that next time, he'll bring Jack Nicholson with him.  That's the way his mind works--he knows there's no way I'm going to say I hate "The Shining" with Jack Nicholson in the same room with me. 

I just hope they don't stay very long, because you can only make so many cheese sandwiches before you start wanting to grab an axe and kill people with it.  And the only Jack Nicholson movies I have on DVD are "Little Shop of Horrors" and "The Terror", which would probably make him even more pissed-off at me than he already is.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

PORFLE AND VAN HELSING VS. DRACULA



When I was in college, one of the most unusual summer jobs I ever had was as a vampire hunter's assistant.  I didn't know what to expect when I answered the "HELP WANTED--VAMPIRE HUNTER'S ASSISTANT" ad--surely it was some kind of joke, I thought, or an amusing play on words--but during the interview I became convinced that Professor Van Helsing was indeed quite serious about the whole thing. 

A wiry, distinguished gentleman in his early 60s, with a white buzzcut and thick glasses, Professor Van Helsing looked up from my application and asked me how I felt about stakes.  "I like mine well-done!" I joked, trying to lighten the situation.  He didn't seem to get it. 
"No," he said, "I mean wooden stakes...the kind that one hammers into a vampire's chest and straight through his hideous black heart, in order to end the accursed fiend's ghastly reign of terror on Earth for all eternity."  Well, he had me there.  "Oh," I said sheepishly.  "Well, I guess I like 'em okay." 

That seemed to suit him, so he hired me.  My first day was sort of a training period, in which I practiced hammering stakes into watermelons.  The professor demonstrated the proper method and I emulated him as best I could.  Once, I missed the stake entirely and splattered the watermelon all over the both of us.  I felt kind of like a more serious version of Gallagher. 

The professor took out a handkerchief and wiped the dribbling juice and seeds from his face, but remained calm.  "Keep trying," he said.  So I kept at it for the rest of the day until I could whack that sucker all the way through the watermelon on the first lick. 

The professor must've deemed my progress satisfactory, because he said, "Meet me at the old Burton mill at daybreak.  Bring your hammer, stakes, and a crucifix." 

"Should I bring a sack lunch?" I asked.  "Or will we stop off at a Jack In The Box or something?"

He had never heard of Jack In The Box.  "There's a tavern nearby," he said.  "We will procure food and drink there, provided you still have an appetite come the completion of our grisly task."

"So...you'll stake me for dinner?" I asked whimsically.  He didn't get it.

Well, I had to set my alarm clock if I was going to be dragging my butt out of bed before sunup.  I still had trouble arriving on time, especially since the old Burton mill was way the hell out in the middle of nowhere and there weren't any signs or anything. 

I found the professor waiting under a nearby chestnut tree, wrapped in a dark cloak, his features hidden under a wide-brimmed fedora as he kept a watchful eye on the old mill.

"Stake-out, eh?" I quipped. 

"Follow me," he said, oblivious to my humorous remark.  We entered the crumbling old building, which was dark and cobwebby inside. 

I was pretty creeped out already, and this whole business about vampires and stuff was starting to feel real all of a sudden.  So it was with extreme trepidation that I followed the professor through a shadowy doorway and down a creaky flight of wooden stairs into what turned out to be a vast underground chamber. 

He waved his hand to indicate something in the gloom.  Straining my eyes, I could just make out a wooden coffin lying on the dirt floor.  "There," he said in a low voice, "is the hellish embodiment of evil known as...Count Dracula." 

I gulped audibly, feeling as though I'd just swallowed a golf ball.  Suddenly I wished I'd taken that other job with the landscaping service. I also had to go to the bathroom real bad.

Professor Van Helsing crept up to the coffin and, very slowly, opened the lid.  The creaking sound seemed inordinately loud and lasted for a small eternity.  And there, before my bulging, horrified eyes, lay Count Dracula.  I assumed he was asleep--at least, I freakin' hoped so--although his eyes were wide open and seemed to be boring right into mine.  "Uh...is that normal?" I whispered hoarsely.

"Nothing about this vile Hell-spawn abomination is normal," muttered the professor, taking a wooden stake from under his cloak and placing the point carefully over the vampire's chest.  "Steady now--with all your might, wield your hammer true and drive this righteous spike of God clear through its hideous heart."  He gripped it with both hands, his body tensed in grim determination.

I took a deep breath, released it slowly with a quavering "whoosh", and raised the hammer over my head.  One chance.  One blow.  All I had to do was pretend that this horrible Count Dracula was a watermelon.  A big, scary watermelon with bloody fangs and blazing red eyes that were staring straight into mine and terrifying the living crap outta me. 

I could do it, I told myself.  I was Gallagher.  A badass, vampire-killing Gallagher.  With one last drawing of breath and summoning of will, I heaved the hammer upward and then brought it down with every last ounce of strength my body could muster.

Unfortunately, I missed the head of the stake and slammed the hammer right down on Professor Van Helsing's thumb.  For one brief, awful moment, it seemed to visibly throb just like in the cartoons.  "Eeeee-YOW!!!" he cried, holding his thumb in excruciating pain and hopping around crazily as stakes, crucifixes, and big bulbs of garlic flew out of his cloak and onto the ground at his feet. 

With a sudden jolt, Dracula awakened and glared straight at me, his face contorted in a grimace of inhuman rage.  Growling like some feral beast from Hell, he sat up in his coffin and reached out for me with clutching claws.  Thinking fast, I hoisted the hammer up again and hit him over the head with it as hard as I could. 

This seemed to disorient him for a few moments, so I whacked him over the head again.  Seeing this, Professor Van Helsing overcame his pain and grabbed the stake, placing it in position over the vampire's chest once again.  "Now!" he cried.  "While there's still time!"

I swung the hammer again, and again I missed the stake and smashed Professor Van Helsing's thumb.  The same one, too.  "Eeeee-YOW-OWW!!!" he cried, continuing to dance around in pain holding his throbbing thumb. 

Dracula had regained his senses by now, so I whacked him over the head a third time, and then a fourth.  He went cross-eyed for a moment, his tongue hanging limply between his fangs.  I grabbed the stake and held it in position with one hand, then rared back for another blow. 

But my hand was stayed by a quick, steely grasp.  Dracula wrested the hammer from me, flung it aside, and began to emerge from his coffin, pointing at me with a single accusatory talon as his dripping fangs gleamed in the half-light.  Before I knew it, he was looming over me with his cape swept open in both hands like huge bat wings. 

I didn't know what else to do, so I kicked him in the nuts.  "YAAARRGGHHH!!!" he shrieked, sounding similar to an enraged condor or something, and then he doubled over like a stage magician taking a bow. 
Meanwhile, Professor Van Helsing had managed to grab the stake and maneuver into position behind the vampire, holding it outstretched in both hands.  Apparently, he had lost his glasses sometime during the excitement and wasn't quite sure where Dracula's heart was at the moment.  But I didn't have time to quibble over details, so I grabbed the hammer, drew it back, and swung with all my might. 

This time my aim was true.  Striking it squarely on its head with a resounding thwack, I drove the righteous spike of God straight up Dracula's ass.

I'd never seen such a strange combination of anger, distress, and utter incredulity as I saw on Count Dracula's face at that precise moment.  The immortal Lord of Darkness had dealt with countless vampire hunters over the centuries, had endured untold stake-through-the-heart attempts, and survived to terrorize the world of the living again and again.  But judging from his reaction at this particular time, he'd never had a wooden stake driven up his ass before. 

"Gaaaa," he finally managed to gurgle as he staggered around stiffly, trying to reach behind him to remove the offending object.  He advanced upon me as before, fangs bared in slavering fury, so I kicked him in the nuts again for good measure.  This seemed to be the last straw. 
With a final cry of mortal indignation, Count Dracula turned into a bat and prepared to fly away.  Unfortunately for him, however, the wooden stake remained the same size, so now he was a tiny little bat with a regular-sized stake up his ass. 

Unable to stay aloft, he nose-dived straight for Van Helsing's big toe.  The professor yelped and hopped around holding his aching foot as a few more bulbs of garlic bounced out of his coat pockets.  I bent over and picked up the stake, which still had the bat stuck on the end like a popsicle.  I could hear a tiny little Count Dracula voice squeaking "I'll get you for this, you bastard!", but it wasn't anywhere near as terrifying as before. 

When we emerged into the daylight again, tiny Dracula-bat burst into flames.  So I used him to light a cigarette and then tossed the smoldering remains into a nearby trash barrel.  "Well," I said with a mischievous smirk, "Dracula and I have one thing in common...we both enjoy a good smoke after a juicy stake."

Van Helsing didn't get it.  I worked for him off and on for the next ten years, helping him to wipe out a massive segment of the vampire population throughout North and South America and most of Europe, and during that time I told him hundreds, maybe thousands of "stake" puns, but he never got a single one of them.  Ever. 

Finally, on my very last day as his assistant before moving on to a potentially rewarding career as a nightclub ventriloquist, the professor treated me to a steak dinner.  While we were eating, he looked at his steak, then at mine, and a sudden thought seemed to occur to him for the first time.  "Steak...stake..." he muttered.  "Why, they're homonyms.  Have you ever noticed that?"

"Yes," I said, sitting up.  This was it!  "In fact," I stated emphatically, "it would be a mis-stake...not to." 

"Yes, it would," he said.  "How's your steak?"

Saturday, October 20, 2012

PORFLE PRESENTS: "A HALLOWEEN STORY"




The reason that I can't stand Halloween anymore doesn't have anything to do with any religious or moral objection to ghosts and goblins and stuff.  I love monsters and horror and old Britney Spears videos just as much as the next person.  No, what turned me against Halloween was what happened on the night of my very last trick-or-treat outing, when I finally discovered that the delicious Halloween candy I'd been eating all those years was really made out of...people. 
That's right!  Halloween candy...is PEOPLE!!!!!!

Okay, I just made that up.  What really happened went something like this...

(hazy dissolve)

The year was nineteen-sixty or seventy-something.  Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin had just eaten the very first Hostess Ding Dong on the moon.  Teenage girls all over America were worshipping Sumo wrestlers dressed as giant hamsters because of a misprint in the latest issue of "Tiger Beat."  And Richard Nixon was still "cool."  I had just achieved my childhood dream of becoming a citywide pariah well before my 18th birthday, simply by showing up at the mayor's daughter's wedding in a gorilla suit and passing out chili dogs with sparklers in them to the guests. 

I was just in the middle of performing an impromptu ventriloquist act with my dummy, The Great Leprosini, when suddenly everyone started throwing their chili dogs at me.  Normally that would be a good thing, but in this case I could sense a certain hostility coming from the crowd--especially the bride and groom, whom I had playfully slathered in hot tar and covered with chicken and duck feathers in lieu of a traditional wedding gift. 

While making my escape, I quite understandably had to beat up a few old ladies who had gotten in my way, and as I kicked one of them face-first into the wedding cake it occurred to me that it was Halloween.  Oh, boy!  Pulling the trigger on my industrial-strength spray gun, I doused the rest of the wedding guests with several gallons of wolf urine contained in two large tanks strapped to my back.  Then I bid a fond adieu to the distinguished assemblage, released the rabid warthogs, and skipped merrily home to put on my Princess Leia costume.  It was trick-or-treat time!

"You can't be Princess Leia," Mom scolded as I got dressed.  "You're a boy."

"SHUT UP, Mom!" I eloquently replied.

Grabbing my candy bag, I skipped merrily out the door and was soon joined by my friends Tubby and Mr. Jim-Jim.  Tubby was dressed as Vice-President Spiro T. Agnew in drag, and Mr. Jim-Jim was dressed as Tubby.  So I kicked him in the balls for not paying me back the ten bucks Tubby had owed me for two weeks.  It was a merry mix-up! 

I laughed heartily at my honest mistake, but Mr. Jim-Jim continued to moan and complain so I hit him really hard a whole bunch of times until he didn't make any more noise.  Tubby backed away real scared-like, as though he'd just seen a ghost.  Wow!  It was already turning out to be one spooky Halloween!

Well, I decided that we'd knock on old Mrs. Wilson's door first.  "C'mon, Tubby!" I said cheerfully.  But Tubby had disappeared!  I got that really creepy feeling, like I did every time the police stopped in front of my house and got out of their car and told my mom that something "had to be done" about all those maniacal assaults or arsons or whatever--it all sorta gets mixed up in my head, ha ha--but, like, all the bad things that "Joe" had done and then blamed on me the way he always did. 

Sometimes I would just suddenly go to sleep, and then "Joe" would appear and do bad things, and when I woke up people would be pointing and blaming me for them!  When they did that, I would just have to hit them really hard a whole bunch of times until they stopped saying those bad things about me. 

Well, the next thing I knew, I was holding Mrs. Wilson upside-down by her feet and trying to flush her head down the toilet!  "Gimme some more of that damn candy!" I could hear myself saying in a real mean voice like The Hulk.  "Where's the rest of those f***in' popcorn balls!"  Okay, I don't even like popcorn balls, so I'll bet that was Joe who had done all that and left me to take the blame again! 

So I propped Mrs. Wilson up in her easy chair real nice in front of the TV, put her feet up on some cushions, and screamed into her face as loud as I could so she'd be sure to hear me, "THAT WAS JOE THAT DID ALL THAT STUFF, MRS. WILSON!!!  DON'T YOU GO BEING BAD AND BLAMING ME FOR IT!!!"  I think that did the trick, because as I left with my bag full of delicious candy I couldn't hear her saying anything.

As soon as I began to skip down the sidewalk again, my youthful mind aglow with happy thoughts of tricks and treats, I noticed that some police cars had pulled up just ahead and that Tubby and Mr. Jim-Jim were talking to the police and pointing at me.  I wanted to appear innocent and nonchalant, so I skipped real hard and swung my arms like I was really carefree and happy.  They stared at me with this weird look on their faces, and I think it was because they'd never seen such a cool Princess Leia costume before! 

I skipped harder and harder, and looked more and more defiantly nonchalant, until finally I was screaming my head off and the candy was flying all over the place and I just wanted to hit them all really hard a whole bunch of times until they would just LEAVE ME ALONE!!!  And even Mrs. Wilson agreed, because by that time she had stuck her head out the front door and was screaming, "LEAVE ME ALONE!!!" 

I don't know why, but the police took their guns out and started coming after me.  I ran and ran, around Mr. Burton's house, up the alley behind some other people's houses, and back around to where one of the police cars was.  I hopped in and started it up, racing the engine like they did in that cool "Speed Racer" movie.  VROOOM-VROOOM!!! 

I put the police car into gear and rammed the gas pedal to the floor, and before I knew it I was chasing the police and Tubby and Mr. Jim-Jim and some other people who had come out of their houses all up and down the street and across everybody's yards and through their picket fences and everything.  It was just like "The Dukes of Hazzard" if Princess Leia was the guest star! 

"Get out of my way, bad people!" I heard Joe's voice scream.  "I'll turn you all into roadkill!"  Since he seemed to be driving the car, I just sat back and relaxed.  It was fun, zooming up people's front steps and crashing through the front walls of their houses, chasing them around for awhile, and then crashing out the back walls again.  Pretty soon there were a lot of people running for their lives as Joe and me careened all over the place with the police siren going full blast.  Policemen, neighbors, and little kids in different festive Halloween costumes all scampered and dove out of the way like insects.  Ha ha ha ha ha!  "I'M THE KING OF THE WORLD!!!" I shouted triumphantly out the open window. 

And then, as suddenly as it had started, my fun came to an end when the police car finally ran out of gas.  It coasted to a stop and I got out, happier and more at peace with the world than I had been since Dr. Feldman gave me the really big pink pill that made all the TV shows a hundred times funnier.  I barely noticed the police approaching me with extreme caution, guns drawn, and then wrestling me to the ground and slapping the handcuffs on me.  I was still in a state of extreme euphoria when they fingerprinted and booked me, beat me with rubber hoses, and threw me into a cell with a bunch of drunk, hostile bikers and serial killers.  "You can't do this to me!" I heard myself shrieking through the bars.  "I'm Princess Leia, DAMMIT!" 

But it wasn't Joe's voice this time.  It was mine.  I had finally learned to stand up...for myself!
 
Mom showed up a few hours later to bail me out.  She didn't say anything on the way home, which was worse than if she'd chewed me out.  When we walked through the front door, Dad looked up from the TV and gave me this kind of...I don't know..."disappointed" look.  It was at that moment that I realized for the first time that, after all the trouble I'd just been through, I didn't have a single piece of candy to show for it.  I'd even lost my cool "Barney" trick-or-treat bag.  And that's probably why Dad looked so disappointed.  He'd been looking forward to eating some of my delicious Halloween candy.

"I'm sorry, Dad," I said in my most sincere voice.  "I meant to save you some gummi bears or some of those little 'fun-size' Mr. Goodbars that you like.  I really did.  But then Mrs. Wilson, and the police, and Tubby and Mr. Jim-Jim...well, they were all very bad, and--"

The thought of all these bad people and what they'd done to me started to make me madder and madder.  Suddenly I wasn't "sorry" anymore.  Bristling with anger, I straightened my Princess Leia hair buns and skipped really, really hard up the stairs to my room.  Too wired to go to bed, I skipped really, really hard around and around my room, harder and harder, my blazing nonchalance growing in intensity until I realized that I was stomping holes in the floor and the downstairs ceiling was starting to crumble.  I was still skipping, skipping like King Kong would've skipped if he were a cute little kid like me, when the whole house suddenly caved in and the ruptured gas line exploded. 

Needless to say, I heroically made my way through the flames and pulled Mom and Dad to safety.  But did anyone appreciate my heroism?  Of course not.  I was still a citywide pariah, which wasn't quite as much fun as I'd thought it would be back when I decided to be one instead of a fireman or a cowboy.  To everyone else, I was still "that bad kid."  Well, I'd show them.  I'd show them all. 

I would become...PORFLE.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

PORFLE PRESENTS: THE SARAH SILVERMAN NON-INTERVIEW




One day it occurred to me that it would be totally cool to interview Sarah Silverman!  Not only would the interview be interesting for people to read, but scoring such a journalistic coup would surely make me "King Sh** of F*** Mountain", as the saying goes. 

So I composed the following email and a list of interview questions, and sent them to her.  Actually, I sent them to the person who runs Sarah Silverman's MySpace page with a request that it be forwarded to Sarah Silverman personally.  That was two or three years ago, and I have yet to receive a response.  What the heck's taking so long?   

Anyway, here's my interview with Sarah Silverman in its entirety.  Minus only her answers, that is, which I will fill in later when she gets back to me regarding my email.  I'm starting to worry that it may have been caught up in her spam filter or something.  Or maybe there's a more sinister explanation.  It seems like there's a more sinister explanation for just about everything these days, ha ha.  Well, here's the interview...

 
Dear Sarah Silverman,

Hi!  My name is "porfle."  I think you are, like, super awesome and stuff.  Would you like to be interviewed by me?

Before you say "no", please consider one thing:  this is an email, and your saying the word "no" will have absolutely no effect whatsoever.  You must type it and then email it back to me so that I can read it.

Here are the 20 questions for you to answer:




1.  I got to see Steve Martin once back in the 70s.  He was performing in the gym at a university in East Texas, and it only cost about four dollars to get in.  Would you be my girlfriend?

2.  This is a two-part question: who is the real Sara Silverman, and would she be my girlfriend?

3.  I loved your appearances on "Mr. Show", especially the sketch about the after-school club for kids who thought after-school clubs were "gay."  Did you really go up inside the teacher's mom's ass at the end, or was that just special-effects?

4.  Why do you use so many cuss words in your comedy?  Do you find this necessary in order to compete with other comics who also use a lot of cuss words?

5.  Why aren't women funny?  (If you find this question offensive, you can change the "aren't" to "are" and put a "so incredibly" in front of "funny.")

6.  Why didn't the entire cast of THERE'S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY wear funny teeth like Matt Dillon?  If it made his character funnier, wouldn't this have made the whole movie about a hundred times funnier?

7.  Which well-known person would you most like to embalm? 

8.  You played a joke writer on "The Larry Sanders Show", which I consider to be one of the funniest comedy series ever produced.  Did you ever get to see Garry Shandling naked?  If so, what effect did this have upon your religious beliefs?

9.  Would you consider appearing in a dinner theater production of "Barefoot In The Park" in which you co-starred with Carrot Top?  What other projects and/or sexual acts have you considered performing with Carrot Top?

10. Have you ever made fun of Bill Maher for being in CANNIBAL WOMEN IN THE AVACADO JUNGLE OF DEATH?  Have you ever made fun of him so relentlessly that he started crying?

11. I've read that you love a variety of sports and are an exceptional athlete.  Would you be my girlfriend?

12. What classic movie would you most like to see the entire cast be stark naked in?  Have you ever undressed Rod Steiger with your eyes?  How about Merv Griffin?

13. I've seen your stand-up act on TV two or three times, and I thought you were really, really funny.  Would you like to know why it is now illegal for me to fart in the state of Massachusetts?

14. Have you ever imagined what Gary Busey would look like in a baby-doll nightie and "clear heels"?

15. You have your very own website.  What's it like?

16. If you were me interviewing you, what question would you have asked you?

17. If you were you interviewing me, what question would you have asked me? 

18. Would you fly in a passenger jet that was being piloted by David Hasselhoff's testicles?  (Note: the in-flight meal would be a breaded veal patty with a light mushroom sauce.)

19. I haven't had cable-TV or gone to the movies in several years, so I have no idea what you've been doing lately.  Does this positively or negatively influence your assessment of my suitability to be the father of your children?

20. This is the twentieth and final question.  Do you think dogs should be legally forced to wear string bikinis?

Monday, August 20, 2012

PORFLE VS. OCCAM'S RAZOR




Ever find yourself in the middle of a debate about UFOs or Bigfoot or something cool like that, and the idiot who's stupid enough to have an opposing opinion to yours suddenly gets all smug (you know, the furrowed-eyebrows and pursed-lips routine, with a scoffing noise and a weary head-toggle thrown in for extra smugness) and intones, "Well, according to Occam's Razor..." 

Don't you just want to strangle the weaselly little bastard, chop him up into little pieces, and call Winston Wolf to come dispose of him for you?

Wikipedia defines "Occam's Razor" as the principle that "the explanation of any phenomenon should make as few assumptions as possible, eliminating those that make no difference in the observable predictions of the explanatory hypothesis or theory."  It sounds like something the Scarecrow would reel off right after he got his brain.  Which is why, not long after THE WIZARD OF OZ ends, everybody else in Oz strangles the Scarecrow, chops him up into little pieces, and calls Winston Wolf to come dispose of him for them.

A simpler way of putting it is this:  "All other things being equal, the simplest solution is the best."  Well, that's just great, but it doesn't really explain alien anal probes, now does it? 
Of course, Occam's Razor fanatics, whom I will henceforth refer to as "Occheads", think that the simplest solution to stuff like that is that everybody's either lying or they're coo-coo.  So instead of smugly intoning "Well, according to Occam's Razor, blah blah blah" they should simply come right out and say "Lying or coo-coo!  Lying or coo-coo!  BWAAAAK!" and then hop around like parrots while making wing-flapping motions with their hands in their armpits. 

Of course, along with "lying or coo-coo" I should probably also add "mistaken."  Occheads love to pull the smug routine on people and pronounce them "mistaken" in their insistence that they just saw a flying saucer buzz their house or Bigfoot carry their grandmother off into the woods. 

"What you really saw," they'll inform you as though they'd been monitoring your eyeballs through a magic TV screen, "was something totally mundane and ordinary that you stupidly misinterpreted as something else, stupid.  And when I say 'stupid' I don't mean to say you're generally stupid, but simply that you're stupid compared to me" and then they'll titter at you.  And then you have to punch the Winston Wolf speed-dial again.

Now, I've seen UFOs that I know without a doubt weren't airplanes, temperature inversions, weather balloons, or the planet Venus.  I know I'm not lying, and, for the sake of argument, let's assume for the moment that I'm not coo-coo, ha ha, so according to Occam's Razor, I must be mistaken.  Except that I'm not.  So in this case, the simplest solution to the question of whether or not I saw a UFO fly over my house is that I saw a UFO fly over my house.  Case closed, pal!  Try to smug that one off.

The trouble is, though, that Occheads can smug anything off.  The only thing they can't smug off is something that they actually witness themselves, and they never actually witness anything themselves.  It's like on "The X-Files" when an entire fleet of UFOs flies by while Scully's checking her lipstick, and Mulder says, "Scully!  Did you see that?" and she says "See what?" and he says "That entire fleet of UFOs!" and she gives him that smug look.

I wonder if people were invoking Occam's Razor back when they insisted that the world was flat?  It would certainly be a much simpler solution than all that other complicated, scientific crap that finally came out later on about it being round and revolving around the sun and whatnot.  I'm sure some Occhead pulled the old smug routine on some poor astronomer while he was being burned at the stake for heresy, and then hopped around squawking like a parrot.  In those days, "mistaken" was replaced with "heresy" and the Occheads called Winston Wolf on you.

Personally, I never even heard of Occam's Razor until I saw the movie CONTACT with Jodie Foster and Matthew McConna-hey.  And I'll bet at least 90% of Occheads didn't either because nobody ever invoked "Occam's Razor" to smug me off about anything until after that movie came out.  Which makes the whole thing even more infuriating because you just know that most of these Occheads saw the part of the movie where Jodie Foster says "Well, according to Occam's Razor..." to Matthew McConna-hey, and instantly started squawking around like parrots and then running all over the place looking for excuses to smug people off with it.  And after that, "Well, according to Occam's Razor" started popping up on message boards all over the Internet like a plague while people who didn't happen to see the movie were scratching their heads and thinking "WTF?"

Also from Wikipedia: "The term razor refers to the act of shaving away unnecessary assumptions to get to the simplest explanation."  The trouble with this is that "unnecessary assumptions" sometimes turn out to be true.  I once unnecessarily assumed that 8-track tapes would become obsolete, and guess what?  They did.  I ended up selling about 250 of them to some guy for five bucks, and I don't know what the hell he was going to do with them.  Maybe he was one of those people who just can't stand to hear a song that doesn't drag or have a two-minute gap in the middle of it, or maybe he just likes to feed the tapes into the player and listen to it eat them.

Did Occam use a razor to shave away unnecessary beard hair to get to his simplest facial appearance?  I don't know--I've never seen a picture of him.  I certainly hope he didn't have a beard, because if he did, why?  And what if he somehow stepped into a mysterious time warp that transported him to now, and tried to explain what had just happened to him to some Occhead, and got smugged off?  "Well, according to Occam's Razor..." they would intone, hopping around squawking like parrots, and he'd be thinking, "WTF?"

Friday, July 6, 2012

PORFLE VS. PORFLE




(NOTE: This interview originally appeared online back in Aug. 2008, but everything I said in it still goes.  And that goes double for me, too!)

Okay, I'm usually a pretty patient person and not given to griping and/or complaining a lot, but I've just about had it up to here with this horse's ass who calls himself "porfle."  Who does he think he is, anyway, with all of his "porfle vs. this" and "porfle vs. that"? 

In order to try and find out, I decided to interview him.  Needless to say, it was a visually and emotionally disturbing experience.  And I'm still trying to get the smell out of my clothes. 



porfle: What's that you're doing--pretending to juggle, or milking an imaginary cow?
porfle: I don't know what you're talking about.


porfle: What makes you think you have the right to jabber about your worthless opinions on the Internet?
porfle: What makes you think you have the right to not shut up?  Oh, and that's a rhetorical question.  So instead of answering it, just shut up.


porfle: Are you always this snippy?
porfle: I thought I told you to shut up.


porfle: What do you call these little things that you write?  I really don't think they qualify as "articles."  They're too disorganized and uninformed to be regarded as "essays", and they're too lame to be called "rants."  Really, to me they just seem like random blather.
porfle: I call them "random blather." 
porfle: No, seriously.
porfle: Ha ha, okay, seriously...I call them "diss-kabobs."
porfle: That sounds pretty stupid to me.
porfle: Well, you're a dumbass.


porfle: What's your favorite movie?
porfle: The one where your mom explodes and rabid hyenas devour the chunks.  And you get gang-raped by buffalos.  On VH1.  I also liked the sequel, where the baby alien gets lost on his way to your chest and bursts out of your ass.


porfle: Why do you dislike Billy Crystal so much?  He's obviously pretty talented, or he wouldn't be where he is today.
porfle: Billy Crystal murdered my parents.  I was only eleven.  We had just left the theater after seeing ROCKET MEN FROM MARS, and Billy Crystal accosted us as we were taking a shortcut through a dark alley.  His bloated, unshaven face was a hideous scowl of pure hatred for Mankind and all that is decent.  He had a gun and growled, "Hand over the wallet and the jewelry or I blow the brat's head off."  Well, Dad made a grab for the gun, and--
porfle: This sounds a lot like the origin of Batman.
porfle: No, it doesn't.


porfle: Do you really detest "Star Trek"'s Ensign Chekov as much as you say you do?
porfle: No.  In fact, I have an Ensign Chekov Real Doll.  A custom job, costing over $20,000 to have it designed according to my exact specifications, if you know what I mean. 
porfle: I'm not sure I do.
porfle: Well, it screams like a girl whenever I touch it.  Which turns me on big-time.  And it has really big hair--bigger than Mickey Dolenz, bigger than Herman's Hermits. 
porfle: Is it "anatomically-correct"?
porfle: That depends on how you define the phrase.  Instead of genitalia, it has a built-in player piano that plays "Yankee Doodle" whenever you put in a nickel.  But, according to legend, so did Ensign Chekov. 
porfle: How did you afford to pay $20,000 for it?
porfle: I robbed a bank, disguised as actress Anne Heche.  My getaway vehicle was a cement mixer filled with goose-liver pate'.  I am still at large.


porfle: Why does it smell like cat whizz in here?
porfle: Because I'm sitting in the chair that my cat doesn't like to whizz in.


porfle: "Brady Bunch" or "Partridge Family"?
porfle: Partridge Family, of course.
porfle: Really?  Because I notice you have all three seasons of "The Brady Bunch" on videotape.
porfle: Oh, you mean to watch?  I thought you meant to hang on rotating meat hooks and feed to alligators and grizzly bears on live television.


porfle: Have you ever been psychoanalyzed?
porfle: Yes.  But I couldn't afford an actual psychoanalyst, so I went to a plumber instead.
porfle: What were his findings?
porfle: I had a stuck valve.  That's why my water bill has been so high for the last six months.


porfle: Where do you see yourself in, say, five years?
porfle: In a mirror.  Ha ha, pulled the old "dipsy-doodle" on you.


porfle: What do you hope your legacy will be?
porfle: I just want to be remembered as a humble man who tried, in his own small way, to entertain and enlighten people.  And also as the "Fifth Beatle."


porfle: Who's your favorite Spice Girl, and why?
porfle: Sporty, because, unlike the other Spice Girls, she has never crapped on my front porch at six in the morning and stuck a cocktail umbrella in it.

Friday, June 15, 2012

PORFLE VS. WHIFFLE BALLS





Go to any message board, start a thread called "What movies do you think are overrated?", and watch the blithering idiots descend on it like flies on Beefaroni.  BLADE RUNNER's overrated.  2001's overrated.  RAGING BULL's overrated.  The GODFATHER movies, the ALIENs, the TERMINATORs, all three LORD OF THE RINGS films, anything by that no-talent plagiarizing hack Tarantino, blah blah BLAH.  GONE WITH THE WIND is overrated.  CITIZEN KANE--CITIZEN FRICKIN' KANE--is overrated. 
In other words, anything totally great that has been loved by millions of people for years is overrated.  Oh, excuse me--did I say "people"?  I meant to say "sheeple."  Because the truly discerning movie connoisseur is infinitely more intelligent than the lowly lemming-like "sheeple" who actually, you know, "like" stuff. 

And yes, I'm being sarcastic.  DUHHH.

What isn't overrated to these semi-human pus-spewing warthog-buttock zits?  Boring foreign art films that I either never heard of, or heard of and want to watch about as much as I want to play with whiffle balls.  Unless, of course, those boring foreign art films made a lot of money and were popular.  Then they, too, are overrated.  Which they probably are, but that's beside the point. 

Of course, movies aren't the only things that are overrated in the eyes of these above-it-all snobs who deserve to be eternally drenched with finely-aged wolf urine.  The Beatles are overrated.  Ha ha ha!  Yes, the Beatles just accidentally became regarded by billions of dizzy, irrational sheeple as the greatest rock band ever, ever, ever because some weird combination of ungodly events just happened to occur during a one-time-only alignment of the stars and planets right after a freak interdimensional time-space warp and just before a butterfly landed on Ghandi's ass, and suddenly the Beatles got power-farted out of the sphincter of oblivion and landed in front of Ed Sullivan on live TV one night and everybody went temporarily insane and overrated them.  "A Hard Day's Night"?  Overrated.  "Revolver"?  Overrated.  "Sgt. Pepper"?  OH...VAH...RAY...TED. 

Okay, here's the deal.  Nothing is overrated.  If something is popular or well-regarded enough for a bunch of snivelling doofuses to turn up their noses and snort "that's overrated" at it, then it deserves whatever rating it gets.  EVEN IF I HATE IT.  That's right, I'm a big enough person to say that.  Because I'm so incredibly great.  In fact, I am incredibly F**KING great.  If anything, I am totally UNDER-rated. 
I know I am underrated because there are people who still actually disagree with me on certain things, when they should be diving headlong into prostrate positions before me and worshipping each and every one of my opinions about everything.  Because if my opinions weren't totally, absolutely, overwhelmingly right--why the hell would I even bother to have them?  I'm sure you can see the exquisitely luminous pristine logic of this. 

You know what I think really is "overrated"?  Whiffle balls.  What is a whiffle ball?  A hollow plastic ball with holes in it.  OMFG, that just drives me nuts.  And the sound a whiffle ball makes when you hit it with a bat--sort of a muffled "poonk" sound.  GRRRRR!!!  This goofy kid next door--his name is Brandon, of course--will be in his backyard batting a whiffle ball back and forth into a net, and there's this constant "poonk...poonk...poonk..." in the background while I'm trying to concentrate on something important like writing poetry or whacking off.  Poonk...poonk...poonk... I just can't stand it. 

There should be a law that says anyone who plays with whiffle balls should have to eat them when they're done.  If I told Brandon to rate his whiffle balls, I guarantee you he'd OVER-rate them, even while armed vigilantes were force-feeding them to him.  Forget the Beatles, forget Tarantino, forget CITIZEN farking KANE--the only thing on the face of the earth that is really, truly overrated is whiffle balls.  And Bob Dylan.  But especially whiffle balls.

Friday, June 8, 2012

PORFLE PRESENTS: "SECULAR HORSE"




It was a beautiful, sunny Sunday morning, and Father O'Mallard strolled along the dusty, wooded lane on his way to the old country church.  He looked out beyond the barbed-wire fence that lined the road until he spotted an old brown horse eating some grass beneath a shady tree.

"Good morning, Secular Horse," he called out.

"Good morning, Father O'Mallard," said the horse between mouthfuls of grass.

"And what a lovely morning it is.  Why, it's such a perfect morning for going to--"

"I am not going to church," said Secular Horse.  "Every Sunday morning you stop by here on your way to church to try and persuade me to go with you.  But you are wasting your time, because I do not like that church stuff and that Bible stuff."

"But church is fun for horses," said Father O'Mallard.  "Why, there's lots of horses in the Bible--"

"Name one."

"Well, err..."  Father O'Mallard was stumped.  He couldn't for the life of him recall a single instance in the Bible in which a horse was referred to by name, like "Silver" or "Trigger."  There were the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, of course, but he was afraid Secular Horse wouldn't regard that as a very positive image for horses.

"There are hymns about horses, too," he said, deftly changing the subject.  "And if you come to church with me, we'll all sing one of them for you."  He was telling a bit of a white lie about this, but since he had written a hymn with horses in it himself a month ago and inserted Xeroxed copies of it into all the hymnals in case Secular Horse ever actually came to church with him, it was technically correct.

"Sing one of them now," said Secular Horse.

Father O'Mallard cleared his throat and began to sing.  "Ooohhhh...de horses lubs to go to church, doo-dah, doo-dah...de horses lubs to go to church, all the doo-dah--"

"That's just 'De Camptown Ladies' with stuff about church stuck in," said Secular Horse.

Father O'Mallard stopped singing and sighed.  He wasn't very good at writing his own hymns.  "Come on, Secular Horse," he pleaded.  "Come to church with me.  It will be very edifying for your soul, which is vitally important for the development and well-being of--"

A dull, droning voice from behind interrupted him.  "Don't listen to him, Secular Horse," said Janene Garafalo.  "He's just a con man trying to sell you a load of crap."

"Janene Garafalo is bad, Secular Horse," said Father O'Mallard.  "Don't listen to her."

"No, you're bad," Janene Garafalo droned, straightening her glasses.  "Your oppressive, patriarchal religion is bad.  Your hollow, ridiculous sham of a medieval ritual that you're trying to subject this poor, innocent horse to is--"

Father O'Mallard whipped out his Thompson sub-machine gun and started blasting.  Janene Garafalo's wire-taut reflexes went into overdrive as she ducked and shoulder-rolled into a ditch, simultaneously bringing her bazooka to bear.  Father O'Mallard dashed behind a tree just as the shell hit and blew the tree in half in a blazing shower of shrapnel and wood splinters.  He pulled the pin from a grenade with his teeth and let it fly.  Janene Garafalo sprang to her feet and dived into an empty feed trough a split-second before the deafening explosion left a smoking crater right where she'd been crouched.

This gave Father O'Mallard precious seconds with which to set up his M-47 DRAGON Guided Missile Launcher.  The first deadly projectile went screaming out of the tube as Janene Garafalo scrambled for cover behind a tractor shed, priming her shoulder-fired, M-72 Light Anti-tank Weapon (LAW) while on the run.  As the ear-splitting missile blast took out the feed trough and everything else within thirty yards, she returned fire with multiple bursts until the vicinity of Father O'Mallard's previous ground cover had been transformed into a raging inferno.

Frantically relaying Janene Garafalo's coordinates into his field radio, Father O'Mallard called in an air strike and then lay down a blanket of heavy machine-gun fire to keep her pinned down until the jets could arrive.  Meanwhile, Janene Garafalo's desperate call for reinforcements had proven fruitful when an armored personnel carrier arrived on the scene.  As it screeched to a halt, the heavy side-door slid open and Martin Sheen came screaming out with a machine gun in each hand and fifty pounds of plastic explosives wired to his torso.  At the wheel was a wryly smirking Bill Maher.  "I'll keep the motor running for you guys," he said, smugly chuckling at his own witticism.  A split-second later the entire vehicle was blown to bits.

"YAH-ha-ha!" Father O'Mallard cried, jumping up and down.  His joy was short-lived, however, when he realized that Janene Garafalo and Martin Sheen had infiltrated his perimeter.  With a heavy heart, he activated his field radio and gave the order for the incoming jets to drop their deadly payload on his own position.  "It's a lovely war," he said bitterly, nestling into his hastily-dug foxhole and waiting for the fiery death from above that was mere seconds away.

"Oh, all right, I'll go to church with you," said Secular Horse.

"Aww..." said a disappointed Janene Garafalo, who had Father O'Mallard in her crosshairs and was about to blow his head off.

"Praise the Lord!" Father O'Mallard rejoiced.  Then he remembered to call off the air strike. 

"Well, I'm coming, too," said Janene Garafalo.  "Someone should be there to counsel Secular Horse and deprogram him when it's over."

It was a lovely church service.  Father O'Mallard gave a wonderful sermon about proactive non-violence, and the congregation performed a stirring rendition of "De Horses Lubs To Go To Church" which had even Janene Garafalo dabbing her eyes with a hanky.  When it was all over, they stood outside the church as everyone filed out.  Martin Sheen had already organized a protest with dozens of naked people sprawled out on the ground surrounding the church, their bodies spelling out the words "SAV TEH HORES." 

"Well, Secular Horse," said Father O'Mallard, "now that you see how wonderful church is, I guess you'll be attending it with me every Sunday from now on."

In answer to this, Secular Horse turned around and took a big, steaming dump right on top of Father O'Mallard's shoes.  Everyone threw their heads back and laughed heartily, until there was a freeze-frame and the end credits rolled.



Saturday, June 2, 2012

PORFLE GOES TO THE CARNIVAL






One day, I noticed a big hustle and bustle going on somewhere at the other end of town, so I asked my friend Dave what was going on.

"The carnival's in town!" said Dave.

"Wow!  The carnival's in town!  The carnival's in town!" I marveled.  "What's a 'carnival'?"

"What's a carnival?" Dave echoed.  "It's a thing with all sorts of stuff to do, like riding rides."

"Wow!" I said, even more enthused.  "What are 'rides'?"

"What are rides?" Dave shot back incredulously.  "Why, they're fun things that you get on and they do all sorts of the darndest things you ever saw."

"Wow!  What's 'fun'?" I gushed, barely able to contain my growing excitement.

Dave just looked at me kind of funny after that.  "What the hell's the matter with you?" he said nervously, inching away from me like I had B.O. or something.  "And furthermore, who the hell are you?"

Well, it turned out that I didn't really know Dave after all.  In fact,  I'm not even sure his name was Dave.  After getting kicked off the bus, I decided to head on over to this "carnival" that he'd been blabbing about non-stop and see what the big hubbub was. 

Boy, was it ever crowded!  There must've been two or three billion people there.  The first thing I noticed was this big round wheel made out of cages with people standing in them, and it was whirling round and round.  A flashing sign read "Tilt-A-Whirl" as jolly music crackled and blared from a speaker. There was a man working some levers which seemed to be controlling the whole shebang, so I strolled up and engaged him in conversation.

"Hey mister, what the hell's this damn thing?" I asked, using some "cuss words" so that I'd sound more sophisticated. 

He spat something brown and chewed on his toothpick, eyeing me with either contempt or sheer admiration--I have trouble telling the two apart sometimes.  "It's a Tilt-A-Whirl, dumbass," the man offered helpfully.

I nodded and smiled to indicate my comprehension.  "What does this lever do?"

"DON'T TOUCH THAT!" the man shrieked, but it was too late because I'd already pulled the lever all the way down.  There was a deafening roar and a terrific rending of metal, and suddenly that big old wheel snapped loose from its moorings and started rolling off down the midway.  The people inside it screamed like there was no tomorrow as the giant wheel smashed and flattened a whole line of booths and tents, demolished several cars in the parking lot, and then turned the corner onto Main Street, where it picked up speed down Trolley Car Hill and rumbled like a bat out of hell into rush hour traffic.

I thought it best at that point to avoid any possible misunderstandings regarding the incident, so I ducked into the nearest tent.  People were standing in front of a small, darkened stage where a fat guy in a straw hat drew aside a curtain and pointed to a cage with a wild-looking woman standing in it.  "WATCH!" he bellowed into his microphone.  "GAMORA THE WILD WOMAN WILL NOW TURN INTO...A GORILLA!" 

I blinked my eyes in disbelief as, sure enough, Gamora the Wild Woman turned into a gorilla!  Well, I had to find out what that was all about, so I hung around for a while and then snuck through the curtain and went backstage.  It was dark, but I could just make out that big, hairy gorilla standing there in front of some funny mirrors or something.  I'd never seen a gorilla close up before so I was pretty scared when it turned around and caught sight of me. 

"Hey!" said the gorilla.  Why, it could talk!  "What the hell are you doing back here?"

Boy, was I scared!  Thinking fast, I stomped on the gorilla's foot as hard as I could. 
"YEEE-OWWW!" it screamed in an almost human-like way, jumping up and down on the other foot and hopping off into the darkness.  Before I could even contemplate my narrow escape, I heard the fat guy again.  "WATCH!" came his muffled voice as the curtain opened.  "GAMORA THE WILD WOMAN WILL NOW TURN INTO...A GORILLA!"

I couldn't see what was going on, but from what I heard later it turned out that this time, instead of turning into a gorilla, Gamora the Wild Woman turned into me.  I don't really know the scientific explanation for it, but it sure seemed to frighten the dickens out of the people watching and there was a big stampede as they all shoved their way out of the tent as fast as they could.  I got out of there myself before the fat guy and the gorilla and Gamora the Wild Woman could come after me.

While I was looking around for something else to do, I saw a sight which shocked, saddened, and horrified me.  It appeared to be a public execution, right out of some old medieval photograph.  There, sitting in a makeshift wooden booth over a tank of water, was the condemned man awaiting his fate.  People crowded around like vultures, laughing and jeering, and were even paying for the privilege of throwing baseballs at him! 

I walked up to a man who was selling three balls for a dollar and tugged his sleeve.  "What'd he do?" I asked, pointing at the guy in the booth.

"Huh?"

"What'd he do to end up in there?"

"Oh.  He sold the least amount of tickets for the big Jaycees turkey raffle."

"Good lord!" I gasped.  Boy, these Jaycees sure took their turkey raffles seriously!  "But how is anybody supposed to knock him off the little board with all that chicken wire in the way?"

"Huh?" the man repeated, distracted.  "No, no...you don't knock him off.  You hit the little target there, and he falls in."

"And then he drowns?"

"Huh?  No!  Of course not!"

"So, is the water electrified or something?"

Well, the man must've been hard of hearing, because he didn't answer my question.  Since I didn't have anything else to do, I figured I might as well have a go at hitting the target myself and ending that poor slob's misery.  I'd never actually executed anybody before, but this set-up appeared to be legal since there was a cop just standing there eating a corn dog and watching along with everyone else. 

Stepping on deck, I solemnly saluted the poor, anguished soul in the booth, gave him a hearty "thumbs up", and rared back.  With a mighty heave, I let loose with the most powerful "Major League" fastball I could muster.  I may have put a little too much "pepper" on the pitch, because the ball sailed right over the booth, crashed through the windshield of a passing semi, and knocked the driver out cold. 

The massive tractor-trailer rig veered crazily out of control and thundered straight for us, bashing through everything in its path like an enraged dinosaur as people scattered in all directions and ran for their lives.  Then it jack-knifed and managed to wipe out almost the entire carnival in one enormous, catastrophic swipe before finally shuddering to a stop right in front of a kid with a balloon who was picking his nose.

Since the carnival seemed to be pretty much over by that point, I decided to go home--or, as the TV newspeople mistakenly put it later, "fled the scene"--so I walked down the street to the bus stop.  And who do you think just happened to be the only other guy standing there?  My friend Dave! "Hi, Dave!" I shouted, grabbing his shoulders.  "I took your advice and went to the carnival!"

"Uh, I think you may have me confused with someone else," he said warily.  "My name's not--"

"Here's the bus, Dave!" I said brightly, shoving him through the door and into the very first seat.  I squeezed in beside him and talked and talked about the carnival all the way home, and all the fun adventures I'd had there, and how I'd helped the nice man run the Tilt-A-Whirl and how a wild gorilla woman had turned into me and how I'd helped execute a guy.  Dave was a terrific listener, too, because he just sat there staring straight ahead with kind of an intense glassy-eyed gaze the whole time and didn't interrupt me once!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

PORFLE ASKS: "WOULD YOU BUY GIRL SCOUT COOKIES FROM VIN DIESEL?"



One day the front doorbell rang, and I skipped merrily to answer it, singing "La-la-laaaa."  I opened the door, and, to my surprise, Vin Diesel was standing there on the porch, wearing a Girl Scout uniform.

"Would you like to buy some Girl Scout cookies?" he asked in that familiar low, droning voice.

"Uh...no, thanks," I said hesitantly.  "Aren't you Vin Diesel?"

"Yeah," he grudgingly admitted, holding the box closer to me.  "Sure you don't wanna buy some nice cookies?"

"I really don't want any cookies, Vin," I insisted.  "Tell you the truth, I hate Girl Scout cookies." 

"Rats," he said dejectedly.  He turned and gazed down the street, first one way and then the other, as though this were the last stop in a long series of unsuccessful attempts.  For a moment there, I almost thought I heard a slight whimper, like at the end of XXX when he adds depth to his character by crying. 

"Well, okay," he said with a catch in his voice.  "Guess I'll just go home and listen to saaaad music on the phonograph."  He turned and trudged down the steps.

I couldn't restrain my curiosity any longer.  "Vin!" I called after him.  "Why?  Why are you trying to sell Girl Scout cookies?"

He stopped and gave me a wistful look.  "Because...I want to play the lead role in a new epic film about Girl Scouts.  A role that will astound the critics and silence my detractors once and for all.  I want to play Pinky Frankenstein."  He motioned with his hands, trying to summon the right words.  "She's the...the...the most, like, f**kin' awesome Girl Scout of all time." 

He reached into his skirt pocket and pulled out a picture.  It was a petite little girl in a Girl Scout uniform, about eleven years old, with red pigtails, freckles, buck teeth, and glasses.  "That's her," he said reverently.  "That's Pinky Frankenstein.  She sold so many cookies, they had to keep the cookie factory running 24 hours a day, seven days a week just to keep up with her.  And when they finally ran out of cookie dough--"

"Look, Vin," I said, trying to be honest, "for one thing, you don't look a thing like her."

He held up a finger.  "Ah, but that's where acting comes in.  The best performances come from people you wouldn't normally think of in--" 

He was momentarily distracted as Phil Collins suddenly ran past us in his underwear, screaming "ZOOM!!!  I'M A ROCKETSHIP!!!" before disappearing around the corner of the house. 

"--in that particular role," Vin concluded. 

"Well, you sure as hell can't sell cookies," I said. 

"No," said Vin, the tears flowing for real now.  "No, I can't."  He raised his tortured countenance to the heavens, arms outstretched, and cried out in anguish.  "WHY, GOD?  WHY CAN'T I BE PINKY FRANKENSTEIN?"  With that, he ran away bawling his head off until he disappeared through a hedge on the other side of Mrs. Wilson's backyard.

Some time later, I came across some news on IMDb of an upcoming film entitled "The Pinky Frankenstein Story."  Tom Cruise had snagged the lead role.  There was a picture of him in a Girl Scout uniform, with his usual smug, snarky Tom Cruise grin clearly recognizable even under the fake freckles, pigtails, and buck teeth.  Actually, the resemblance to the real Pinky Frankenstein was amazing.  In the background, playing one of the lesser Girl Scout characters, was Vin Diesel.  And even in his festive uniform, bravely trying to smile like a happy little girl, Vin couldn't help but look as though his world had come to a shattering end. 

While reading the accompanying article, I found that Vin's character was known as "Smelly Edna, the stupid little girl who totally sucked at selling Girl Scout cookies."  He was already receiving withering reviews for his performance, particularly from Roger Ebert, who acidly remarked: "Vin Diesel totally sucks at playing a little girl.  Two thumbs way down--his throat, that is."  And Rex Reed cattily opined:  "Vin Diesel's performance is worse than being sucked into a jet engine and ground into cat food.  I wish he'd get hit by a train." 

As for me, I almost wish that I'd bought some cookies from Vin that day.  But like I said, I hate Girl Scout cookies.  I guess I even hate them enough to destroy Vin Diesel's acting career.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

PORFLE MEETS THE WOLF MAN



In FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLF MAN, Larry Talbot, alias The Wolf Man, finds the Frankenstein Monster in an ice cavern, frozen in a block of ice.  At the end of that movie, the two monsters get swept away by a flood, and in the next film, HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, they're both found frozen in blocks of ice.  The last we see of The Wolf Man is at the end of ABBOTT & COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN, when he and Dracula plunge to their supposed deaths off a high cliff into the sea. 

Well, I didn't think for one minute that this could kill The Wolf Man, so I undertook an extensive search for him all over the world, concentrating mainly on a one-mile radius around my house.  Where did I eventually find him?  In a block of ice.

I built a fire in the dark, creepy ice cavern right next to the block of ice where The Wolf Man lay dormant in order to thaw him out.  Carefully timing my actions to the millisecond, I knew that he would awaken and revert back to his human form just as the full moon went down, which meant that not only would I be safe, but I'd also be able to talk the perpetually-suicidal Talbot out of trying to kill himself again. Here, then, is the result of my fascinating interview with Larry "The Wolf Man" Talbot...


PORFLE: Greetings, Mr. Talbot.  I'd like to ask you a few--

WOLF MAN: RAAARRRRR!!!

PORFLE: YAAAAAAAA!!!

WOLF MAN: GRRRRROOWWLLL!!

PORFLE:  NO!!!  NO!!! HEEELLLP!!!

WOLF MAN:  OWWW-WOOOOOO!!!

PORFLE: (gurgling) Talbot!  TALBOT!

WOLF MAN: (reverting to human form) Wha...where am I?

PORFLE:  Whew!  That was close.

WOLF MAN: Porfle!  Why, I might've killed you.

PORFLE:  I don't understand it!  I had this thing timed perfectly!  Oh, wait--daylight saving time.

WOLF MAN: Why?  Why have you freed me from the ice that imprisoned the beast that lives within me?  Why?  WHY?

PORFLE:  I wanted to interview you.  Heh.

WOLF MAN: Aww gee, why can't ya just leave me alone?

PORFLE: Well, "leaving people alone" isn't exactly something they teach you in interviewer school. 

WOLF MAN:  You went to interviewer school?

PORFLE: (resentful) No...my brother Pablo got to go off to interviewer school.  I had to stay behind and care for my aging parents, and help out on the farm.  Oh, I've done what I had to do in order to get by--I don't apologize to anyone.  But now he looks down on me for the kind of life I had to lead.  Him, the big holier-than-thou interviewer, and me, the geriatric-porn-movie fluffer.  We both chose our own seperate paths...MINE was harder!

WOLF MAN: Uh-huh, well...

PORFLE:  But now, I'm going to be the greatest interviewer the world has ever seen!  I'll interview ALL the world's most horrible monsters!  Even Paris Hilton!

WOLF MAN: Yeah, well, I think I hear my mom calling--

PORFLE: My brother Pablo even refuses me a bowl of soup when I go to visit him!  What do I get?  SPAGHETTI-OS!!!  Out of a can!  He doesn't even heat them up!

WOLF MAN: Please, all I ask is that you--

PORFLE: Which reminds me, I have a few questions I'd like to "ask" you, heh heh.  Now, when did you--

WOLF MAN: Aww, go away!  All of ya!

PORFLE: Is that a fat joke?

WOLF MAN: (defensive) You think you've got it tough?  I can't even hold a job at Kwik-Kopy.  Somebody brings in a stack of important business papers to be duplicated, I smile and give them my best "Yes, sir, can I help you, sir" and then whammo! I turn into The Wolf Man and rip out their jugular vein! 

PORFLE:  Have you tried McDonald's?

WOLF MAN: I've tried everything.  I even got a summer job at Disneyland.  Those poor little kids still have nightmares about a 6'3" Mickey Mouse coming after them, foaming at the mouth.  Goofy shot me with a silver bullet, but that never works.  My pink slip came with a personal note that said "I hate you.  Signed, Uncle Walt."  And then there was that Swedish massage parlor--

PORFLE: You worked at a Swedish massage parlor?

WOLF MAN: No, I didn't get past the audition.  I was giving the owner a massage...it was wonderful, I was using all my finest oils and creams, everything...aww, he looked so happy and serene as I gently kneaded the tension from his buttocks.  Then I turned into The Wolf Man, bit him in the ass, and threw him through a wall.  No, I didn't get the job.

PORFLE: What did you do then?

WOLF MAN: Well, I went after Dracula and Frankenstein for a while.  I don't know why.  Just something to do.  Me and Frankenstein got into this senseless brawl in Visaria once and then the villagers blew up the dam and the flood washed us away, and we got frozen into blocks of ice.  Later I went at it with Dracula and he threw a flowerpot at me, and I fell into the ocean and ended up in this cave in a block of ice. 

PORFLE: What about your old girlfriend from Llanwelly village?  Gwen Conliffe?  Did you ever look her up again?

WOLF MAN: Yeah, I found her a few years ago.  In a block of ice.

PORFLE:  That sucks.

WOLF MAN: (agitated) Everything sucks! 

PORFLE:  So, what do you want to do now?

WOLF MAN:  I only wanna die.  Only in death will I find the peace that has been denied me in life.

PORFLE:  Let me guess--you're a big hit at parties.

WOLF MAN:  I don't get invited to parties anymore.  The last one I went to--a bachelor party--I turned into The Wolf Man and ate the groom.  Then this girl popped out of a cake and I ate her, too.  With ice cream.

PORFLE:  Well, thanks for the interview. Hope you don't get frozen into any more blocks of ice or anything, ha ha.  Best wishes, and may you live eternally.

WOLF MAN:  I don't WANNA live eternally!

PORFLE:  Right, right.  Sorry.

WOLF MAN:  Wait, what time is it?

PORFLE:  It's...goodness, we've been talking for much longer than I thought.  It's already nighttime again.  The moon should be rising any minute now, and--

WOLF MAN:  GRRAAAARRRR!!!

PORFLE:  YAAAAAAAAAA!!!


Well, The Wolf Man chased me around the cave for awhile, but I managed to get away by the seat of my pants, which he ate.  Later I heard that Talbot had traveled to the Sahara desert to get away from it all, and had somehow managed to get frozen into a block of ice.  As for me, I found the whole experience terrifying and emotionally distressing, and am under strict doctor's orders to avoid monsters and pursue only non-disturbing interview subjects, like clowns and record producers.