Archive for March, 2007

Beast Of Burden

March 29, 2007

An Open Letter To Humans From the Animal Kingdom…

Dear Man (and please don’t get all indignant that we used such an un-PC term; you’re the ones who coined it!):

Recently, we members of the Wild Kingdom have been in the news a lot. At first, we thought it best not to say anything and let our press speak for itself. But then it occurred to us that some of you bipeds still don’t quite get it.

So, here it is, spelled out for all of you to understand (even the slow ones who watch reality TV):

We are wild animals. Get it? Wild. Capital W. It’s in our name. Wild animals. Wild kingdom. Wild N’ Out. (Oops, sorry, no, that’s that crappy Nick Cannon show on MTV). Anyway, the point is our natural habitats are wild places. Africa, Australia, South America, sometimes even the forests in your back yard. Not zoos, not circuses or Las Vegas stage shows – and definitely not cramped, filthy apartments in some backward town in North Carolina! When you take us out of our homes, we get stroppy. Sure, we may wait it out, bide our time, pretend we’re being “trained” and enjoying our “captivity” but all we’re really doing is waiting for that one moment when you turn your back or fall or (and even we can’t believe you’re this stupid) let your kids in our pens to play with us.

And it’s not that we’re evil. No. We’ll say it again: we are wild. Not drunken-coed-being-filmed-by-Snoop-Dogg wild but feral, untamed, savage, unrestrained, ferocious, primitive wild. We live, breathe, hunt, mate and die by our instincts. The best you can do is try to understand us. The worst you can do is think we can ever be your pets. That role is filled by the canines and felines your ancestors began domesticating thousands of years ago (and that’s why they’re called domestic pets, by the way, Spanky). Everything else – lions, tigers, bears, birds, squirrels, lizards, mice, spiders – should be left alone in its own natural state. And you can damn well stop encroaching upon that too. You’ve got plenty of space of your own to crap out your mewling brats and build your strip malls, leave our jungles and rainforests and woodlands alone, okay?

Bottom line: we can live and coexist in peace and harmony as long as you don’t try to change us. You can watch us, help us, protect us, look after us from afar, but stop capturing us, training us and imprisoning us. Stop your hunting, poaching and killing. (And while you’re at it, keep that Jeff Corwin buffoon away from us too.)

We don’t necessarily want to bite you or maul you or turn you into dinner but what else are we supposed to do when you treat us wild animals like pound puppies? Face it: when we see you in our natural habitats, we want to either run from you or eat you. Because basically that’s all you are to us: danger or dinner. And it sucks to be put in that position.

It’s not good to bite the hand that feeds you. Even if that hand is what you want to be fed.

Sincerely,
All Creatures Great And Small
The Wild Kingdom,
Planet Earth

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Pollen Hate

March 29, 2007

Ah.  Spring is in the air.  And Spring is in my eyes and in my nose and shoved down my throat, swelling my uvula to the size of a friggin’ grapefruit!

Damn bloody allergies.  And don’t get me started on how the whole thing is just nature having sex with itself.  Oh, sure, they’ll tell you in biology class that there are male plants and female plants, but flora is hemaphroditic at best – and ultimately pollen is just evidence that Mother Nature’s giving herself a great big ol’ wank job.

What the – ? Damned If Fido

March 28, 2007

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This is an actual dog treat. Apparently made by people who were never picked on as kids.  What?  Was Swirly co-opted by Friskies?  Was Purple Nurple taken by Purina?

And what’s really obscene is this little tag:

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“Kids love giving ’em, dogs love getting ’em?”  I seriously doubt dogs would love a wedgie.  Of course, if they’ve been neutered, it’s not like it’s gonna hurt anything.  But still…

Does the SPCA know about this?

Groove Thang

March 27, 2007

Do you know who the Six Freakiest Children’s TV Rock Bands are?  You will if you click here

Personally, I think I might have included the Banana Splits, but any list that contains a reference to Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp gets bonus points in my book!

Brilliant.

You’re On Notice!

March 27, 2007

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The Stephen Colbert “On Notice Board” Generator.  I first discovered it last fall, but felt the need to update.  Have fun!

Hare Today!

March 26, 2007

Oh wow.  I’ve just seen the Skittles Singing Bunny again.  Man.  This may just be the best commercial EVER!  Check it out on YouTube here if you haven’t seen it. 

For my money, the best rabbit on film since Monty Python & The Holy Grail.

Cro-Magnific

March 25, 2007

They’re cranky, whiny, pompous, crabby, ill-humoured, impatient, uptight, sullen and snappish.  They’re put-upon yuppies with obvious grooming issues.  They attend swank parties, see mental health specialists and fly the friendly skies.  Ultimately affluent, social and empathetic, these are the stars of those GEICO ads that get upset at the use of the cavemen stereotype.

And I hate them.  Hate them so very much.

But it’s not what you think.  I don’t hate them because they obviously can’t take a joke.  I don’t hate them because they’re so oversensitive they make a ripe banana look like it’s made of titanium.  I don’t even hate them because they are just so freakin’ clueless as to what makes an ad campaign.

I hate them because they aren’t cavemen.

Seriously.  Cavemen live in caves.  These guys live in posh flats.  Cavemen hunt and gather for sustenance.  These blokes hold jobs.  Cavemen are afraid of advantaged technology.  These jokers use cell phones.

But I miss the gag, you say?  No.  They so totally fumbled the gag.  Had they portrayed these Paleolithic throwbacks as Neanderthals rather than cavemen, that I might allow.  Or had they shown them actually living in caves, trying to create the wheel or discover fire, then, yes, the premise makes more sense.

But you can’t create a series of high-profile ads featuring cavemen who get all indignant over the portrayal of cavemen in a series of high-profile ads unless the aforementioned cavemen actually live in a bloody cave! 

I mean, I can call myself an astronaut all I want but unless I’ve ever been into space I’m just a loser living in denial.  (Although I did drive cross-country on a jealous tear once while wearing a diaper.)

Sparky MacMillan threw a dumpster on my brother’s head at his own birthday party – then blew up his house!

Same Old Seen

March 25, 2007

Something happened the other night. As it happened, I realized it happens a lot. It probably happens to you. I’m sure it’s happening somewhere out there right now. But as it happened, I had this epiphany and I came to understand that it should never happen ever EVER again.

I was out with some folks, hanging at a casual dining restaurant, as they say on the TV. We were talking, chatting, goofing, just doing what groups of folks have done since our species first huddled together for warmth in caves or in trees on the savannah. Passing the time. Anyhow, somebody said something or mentioned something and somehow someone made a passing reference to a film.

Now, let me be clear: THAT is not what I have a problem with. Indeed, we are a pop culture culture and we make references to movies and flicks and motion pictures all the time. We see a movie, we rent a film, we quote lines from a favorite motion picture. We talk about ‘em over dinner, at the malt shop and around the water cooler. Something somebody does reminds us of a scene from a film and we say so. We talk about movies. We laugh about them. They move us and entertain us. Easily done and easily understood.

No. The thing I have a problem with is this: Somebody mentioned a movie and someone else inevitably piped up by saying, “I’ve never seen that.” To which several people said with all the seriousness of a minyan, “You have GOT to see that!”

Well, forgive me, but NO. You do not “have GOT to see that!” There isn’t a film out there from Hollywood, Bollywood, Eiling or Studio Ghibli that anyone HAS to see. Moviegoing isn’t mandatory. Last time I checked, a Blockbuster membership wasn’t required for U.S. citizenship. And until HBO is free on every telly, you can skip all the movies you want. And no one should be made to feel inferior or less of a person because they haven’t caught a particular release. There are some good films out there, certainly. Great films, sure. Enjoyable, thrilling diversions, definitely. And quite a few colossal turds that more than one dorkwad thinks is brilliant.

That’s why I get so irked when someone says, “You have GOT to see that!” Because even accepting that there are a few movies out that that we should probably make required viewing for all Americans – Casablanca, It’s A Wonderful Life and The Godfather – ninety-nine-point-nine percent of the time whenever a person says “You have GOT to see that!” to somebody who has the audacity to admit that their celluloid checklist is a few Ewoks short of a Return of the Jedi – well, to be blunt, they are talking out of their backsides. I mean, while someone could possibly make a solid case as to why you SHOULD see Annie Hall, I fear for the schmuck who tries the same with Children of the Corn II: The Final Sacrifice.

Now, I’m a movie snob, I admit it. Studied Radio, Television and Motion Pictures at Carolina. So, yeah, what I consider a great film may not necessarily match what you do. Or the general public. (Wild Hogs? Really?) But even the flicks I like best – Citizen Kane and Dr. Strangelove and The Graduate – I don’t necessarily recommend to just anyone. Sure, I think I could compile a pretty decent overview of American cinema … and anyone who claims to be pop culturally literate should know the shower scene from Psycho and what a Royale with cheese is … but I am not about to inflict my personal biases on anyone unbidden. Hell, yes, I’ll make fun of you if your Top Ten includes anything with the name Ernest in it, but I will NEVER tell you “you have GOT to see that!” I feel there needs to be a moratorium on that phrase.

NOT seeing a film won’t kill you. It won’t make you any less of a man or woman or human. The lack of knowledge of (or exposure to) any particular chick flick, summer blockbuster, Oscar winner, cult classic or indie masterpiece will not cause the Earth to tilt off its axis leading to a bizarre post-apocalyptic world where giant scorpions roam the planet in an homage to Damnation Alley.

And, trust me – if you haven’t seen that film, feel free to dent the noggin of anyone who ardently tells you “you have GOT to see that!”

Sparky MacMillan wants to be the guy that puts the tangerine in the toilet – not the guy who’s gotta take it out!

…and you smell like one too

March 24, 2007

I feel about birthdays the same as I do about colds.  It’s inevitable that they’ll occur but I don’t have to like them and I do my very best to avoid them.  Also, both are effectively dealt with by drinking lots of NyQuil.

GET TO KNOW ME!

March 24, 2007

I like to maintain an air of mystery.  An enigma wrapped in a riddle wrapped in a crisp, caramel nougat shell.  Still, you send me letters and queries and I guess it’s time to open up a little.  So here you go.  Some of your questions answered.

WHY THE FLEHMEN RESPONSE? Well, to be honest, it started out as an act of community service, but, like many things that are good for you which you’re forced to do as part of your plea bargain, it soon became a habit, if not a keen way to offset my addiction to cyber-porn.

DO YOU GET ANY MONEY OUT OF THIS? Technically, no. That is to say, I receive no actual monetary recompense, per se, from the online fun that is THE FLEHMEN RESPONSE. However, the money I get in exchange for things such as product placement (Drink Surge!) and speaking engagements more than compensates me for my time.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE FILM? Hard to say. Either Monkey Trouble or C.H.U.D.

PAPER OR PLASTIC? Paper, when paying. Plastic, when bagging.

WHEN NO ONE IS AROUND I LIKE TO…? Make haggis and practice my rhythmic gymnastics.

WHAT FACT WOULD PEOPLE BE SURPRISED TO LEARN ABOUT YOU? That I’m actually a registered Libertarian. Or maybe that I was an extra in Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights.

WHAT BODY PART WOULD YOU LEAST MIND LOSING IN AN INDUSTRIAL ACCIDENT? My nose.

I SUBSCRIBE TO…? Omni, Zoobooks, O and Stuff.

WHAT’S THE BEST TUNA? Chicken of the Sea.

WHAT DID YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GREW UP? The manager of a Shakey’s pizza. Ah, so close and yet so far.

HOW’D YOU GET THAT SCAR? An angry ex and an Oral-B.

WHICH COMIC STRIP CHARACTER DO YOU MOST IDENTIFY WITH? Henry. You know – that mute, bald-headed kid. I dunno. He just speaks to something inside of me.

I’LL NEVER LET MY KIDS…? Join the Colombia Record and Tape Club.

I’M ALLERGIC TO…? Pigweed and the Amish.

WAS THAT YOU ON DR. 90210? I’ll never tell!  J

WHAT ADVICE CAN YOU GIVE TO YOUNG PEOPLE? Stay in school. Don’t do drugs. Support your local no-kill animal rescue group. And never, never ever, use your hands to retrieve something you dropped in a public toilet. 

Sparky MacMillan is a myth. Men like him are our last hope… and in that sense, he is a truly dangerous man.