What's Wrong with Yesterday's Menu: Despite the Humpty's slogan designed to attract senior citizens ("A Mature Customer... Like a Precious Gem"), the utilitarian branching options of the Emerald 55 menu - placed, as senior's menus always are, on the last panel - can only remind customers of the ghastly cafeterias of rest homes that they have presumably come to Humpty's to escape. Martin Amis has said that the history of mankind is the history of increasing humiliation, and you can see it in Humpty's Turkey Dinner, a cranberry-covered reminder of the holiday season for the old folks out there. Not to mention that bizarre slogan, which kind of sounds like it's been recovered and partly translated from an ancient Sumerian marketing manual. I'm going to open up a pawn shop and call it "Emerald 55 Collateral Loans" across the street and wait for the mature customers of Humpty's to finish their Rodeo Chickens and wander over. They'll bring jewels, old watches, stereos, and I'll say, "I don't want your possessions. I want... a precious gem".
So Where's Today's Menu, Buddy?: What - did you think that menus lasted forever? What strange self-renewing restaurants do you frequent? This is Humpty's, not Borges. And I'm Palinode, who again is not Borges. And my pet finch? Again, another excellent example of things that are not Borges. Borges would be proud. And lonely, since he'd be shut out from the vast class of non-Borges items that comprise the rest of the universe. And if Borges did not exist at all, would the gigantic non-Borges universe pause even for a moment? Maybe that's why Borges wrote, to assert his lonely class of existence across consciousness, to make of himself an indelible stamp on all that was not him. If that was his goal, I salute him. But I'm not saluting Humpty's, which has run out of food for me to abuse, and so I shall spare a few lines here and there in future entries to kick their marketing literature around.
WHO WANTS TO BE FRIENDS WITH MICHAEL JACKSON? Everybody knows just how strange the answer to that question is, but it's worth going over. Let's see, we've got Elizabeth Taylor, Macauley Culkin, Donald Trump, Liza Minneli, David Gest, a gay porn producer whose many names now escape me, and Yuri Geller. Imagine seeing them all in a police lineup: a queue of frauds, self-parodies, plastic surgery disasters and laughingstocks. What strange subculture has celebrity produced, these people who are not just celebrities, but people who are more like nodes at the end of celebrity's tentacles, frightening masks for the mass culture monster that stalks our better judgement. It's a living museum of the grotesque. Television has become an animated cabinet of curiosities, with freaks who ought to be stuffed and mounted running around on prime time, one step ahead of the taxidermist.
Speaking of running around, the marquee on the theatre down the street is advertising a film called "Cath Me If You Can". Leonard DiCaprio(Italian for 'Leonard of the Caprio') plays a wily patient who runs around the set of ER while Tom Hanks as the implacable doctor tries to track him down and catheterize him. Things get weird when Leo takes out actor Goran Visnjic (Croatian for 'Leonardo DiCaprio') and poses as Dr. Luka Kovac for an entire 45 minutes of screen time, most of which is spent in a supplies closet as Leo tries to master Goran's Croatian accent, height and dark good looks.
And now, because you've been asking, here's the text of my invitation to visit the house of Goody Nurse and Prunesquallor on Friday. Copyright Goody Nurse. Sung to the tune "If you're happy and you know it" etc.
The fun'll come out
So you better show up, 'cause tomorrow
There'll be fun
Just thinkin' about
gives me warm and fuzzy feelings, curtains
With a few hours time
I'll catch up with your life
The fun'll come out tomorrow
So you better show up for tomorrow
Come what maaaaaay,
I love ya, Tomorrow
You're only a day away (& etc.)
That's right, this song is sung to the tune of "If you're happy and you know it". So what have we learned? Hmm.
1. Not only does 'fun' rhyme with 'sun,' it also 'comes out' like the sun. But that's a pretty grandiose comparison. Let's say that fun is like a teenager owning up to his or her unorthodox sexual desires.
2. Goody Nurse just got new curtains for her new apartment, and they're fab. And they filter sun, which brings to the whole sun/fun/maturing gay teen thing.
3. Goody Nurse and my wife (The Lotus) have both joined the John Cage International Marathon, which is the slowest long-distance race ever. By inviting us over and plying us with wine, Goody Nurse hopes to catch up with The Lotus and that crucial five minute lead, which will be strategically important over the next few decades or so.
4. Several years ago the number 4 confided in me and I betrayed his confidence in a weak moment. Therefore number 4 has left and is not coming back.
5. By the time we reach the last lines of the song, it becomes apparent that the tune is actually "Tomorrow," by Yul Brynner and a midget mannequin with an afro.
TRAGEDY: Singer Johnny PayCheck (American for 'Johnathan Pay Cheque') has died at 64. I knew him for that "Take This Job and Shove It" song, but it turns out (I'm an ignorant fellow) that PayCheck released seventy albums. In 64 years! And two of those years he spent in jail for shooting a guy in an Ohio bar. And another two for hitting a guy while he was in the Navy. I'm absolutely in awe of this guy's output. Especially when the output includes songs like "He's in a Hurry (To Get Home to my Wife)".
Retracted on 2003-02-20::11:04 a.m.
parode - exode