Decay of Society — The Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis

I’m watching the Comedy Central Roast of Bruce Willis. At least, I’m trying to watch it. So far, it’s not very entertaining.

I feel that this is an example of how society has devolved over the years. It seems to be a competition about who can be the meanest and exhibit the poorest taste. If the roastee, or anyone on the dais, has ever done something embarrassing in their life, someone is sure to bring it up. If they have a weakness, someone is sure to attack them for it. And the victim sits there and tries to grin and bear it.

People weren’t always this mean. I remember the Dean Martin Roasts from the ’70s. It being a roast, of course there was ribbing going on. But it was all good-natured. The roastee was always in on the joke.

I always looked forward to the Dean Martin roasts. They were fun to watch. And FUNNY!! People like Don Rickles, and Nipsy Russell, and Rich Little, and Joey Bishop, and Charlie Callas. They made me laugh out loud! And Foster Brooks. OMG, Foster Brooks. So hilarious!

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X-Files Dream

I had a strange X-Files inspired dream last night. Mulder and Scully’s long lost son William was in my house. He was a toddler, not sixteen years old, as he should be, considering his birth in 2001. My daughter was watching him, because apparently someone asked her to do that. I wanted to verify that it was William, so I showed him a photo of Scully, and he pointed to it frightenedly and started crying, “Mama!”

I wanted to call or text Scully and let her know we had her child, but I was afraid that Cigarette Smoking Man was monitoring my phone. I thought it might be best to arrange an in-person meeting, but I didn’t know if the more secure way to contact her would be a phone call or a text. I kept pondering over what I should do, and this made me feel very anxious.

I briefly woke up and realized it was a dream. But, it was too early, still dark, so I went back to sleep, and the dream resumed.

Well, at least it was a change of pace from the usual “My teeth are falling out,” “It’s finals day and I haven’t opened the book,” or “I’m running and keep falling down, and where are my pants?”

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Desperado

I was listening to the song Desperado this morning, and I realized that the lyrics seem to describe the plight of middle-aged dating. Don’t keep choosing the wrong type of person. Don’t be so selective. “You ain’t gettin’ no younger!” “You better let somebody love you, BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE!”

The irony is that it seems as people get older, they become more selective, not less selective. People want to learn from their mistakes. At least that’s what I am seeing in the women’s profiles I see online.

“Must love dogs.”
“Must want to travel the world”.
“If you don’t love jazz, then we are not a match.”
“Must be at least 5’11” tall.”
“Must be athletic and toned.”
“Must earn $150,000+.”
“Must play golf.”
“Must love to cook.”
“Must drive a motorcycle.”
“Must want to move to Seattle with me. Next month.”
“Must go ballroom/line/square/folk dancing with me.”
“You have to make me laugh every day.”
“I’m vegan, and you have to be too.”
“My ex loved The Beatles. If you listen to The Beatles, gaah! we are not a match.”
“My ex was named Steven! No more Stevens.”
“My ex was a software engineer! No more engineers.”
“Must wear glasses.” (Hey, found one that I qualify for!)

Ladies, listen to the song. Don’t be so selective that you rule out all the nice guys. Go for the king of hearts, not diamonds. As soon as one of you realizes that your laundry list of requirements is not so important, and you’re ready to let somebody love you, send me a note. Just be sure that you are between 5’0 and 5’8”; are Jewish or possible agnostic, but definitely not atheist; have a least a bachelor’s degree; live within 20 miles; have at most one dog or two cats, but not both; have a most two kids, the youngest of which is at least 18 years old; love to play board games, but not strategy games; like to watch TV, but not too much; and must love Linda Ronstadt’s cover of Desperado!

Let It Be

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What was the first Beatles song you heard on the radio? For me, it was the first and only Beatles song I ever heard while it was on the charts, Let It Be. I wasn’t a Beatles fan. I was only eight years old. I didn’t even listen to the radio, but I heard it when my parents had it on, or when it played in a shopping mall. Even so, I remember that I knew Let It Be was a phenomenon. It was more than just a song. I sort of knew that there was a group called “The Beatles” and this was their last record.

I remember that my sister bought the 45, I assume a few years later. I have it now. I also remember that my grandfather would often say the words, “Let it be”. I don’t know if he was quoting from the Beatles or was even aware of who they were or the name of the song, but he said it quite often.

I remember becoming a fan of pop music around 1973-1974. The first record that I bought was “Seasons in the Sun”, which was number one for quite some time in 1974. After that, the next number one song was Hooked On A Feeling, AKA the ugachaka song. The radio stations that I listened to, WFIL and WIBG in Philadelphia, never never played the Beatles anymore. Once in a while they would play a song like Kodachrome, from 1973, and they would call it an oldie.

From the time I started listening to music in 1973, until 1980, I wasn’t a fan of The Beatles. They were older than oldies. It wasn’t cool to listen to them. I guess those seven years were my Beatles latency period. I did listen to Wings. Because some people want to fill the world with silly love songs. And what’s wrong with that? But Wings were not The Beatles. I don’t even know if I was aware at the time that Paul McCartney was a former Beatle. I remember listening to Elton’s John’s “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds”. Someone told me it was originally recorded by The Beatles, but I still considered it to be an Elton song.

I thought of all this tonight on the way home from yoga class. So when I got home, I had to dig through the 45s and look for Let It Be. I found it, snapped in the yellow adapter, put it on the record player, and listened to it. And boy, did it sound bad! Lots of scratches made it continuously pop. Warping made the tempo speed up and slow down. But when it was done, I listened to it again. And then again. And then again. And it made me happy.

Nobody Says It Better

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Who has been in a relationship that you knew was wrong? And your friends knew it was wrong. But you kept going back, because it was so….right.

I started thinking about such past relationships while driving to work, as I was listening to my Carly Simon playlist, and the song “Jesse” came on. Very poignant lyrics to that song.

I have only a few of my own words to contribute to this post, because nobody says it better than Carly Simon. Just a little editing and rearranging Carly’s lyrics. The “he”s could be “she”s, depending on who is telling the story.

Annie, keep reminding me
That he cut out my heart like a paper doll
Sally, tell me once again
How he set me up just to see me fall

Jesse, quick come here
I won’t tell a soul
My friends will all say “She’s gone again”
But how can anyone know what you are to me?
That I’m in heaven again because you’ve come back to me!

My friends….they think I’ve sunk so low
LA LA LA, LA LA!
LA LA LA, LA LA!
LA LA LA, LA LA!!

Jesse, I will put on cologne
And sit by the phone for you
And sit by the phone for you
And sit by the phone for you

Oh mother, say a prayer for me.

Songwriters: Mike Jr Mainieri / Carly Simon
Published By Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

The Vegetarian

C90F66CD-B1B8-462F-A7F1-E7D353EF9085-16539-00001CBF297809E1I was twenty minutes early for my 4:45 appointment with the psychiatrist. I sat in my car and opened the Meetup app on my phone to see if anything interesting was coming up for book club. I saw that the nonfiction book club was going to read “All The President’s Men” and the fiction club was going to read “The Vegetarian”.

By then it was 4:30 and I walked into the office. Dr Z came out. I said “I’m fifteen minutes early,” and she said “That’s OK, I will see you now.”

She asked how I was doing. I said I’m doing well, and sleeping through the night on the current med. She said, “Good” and wrote a refill prescription and handed it to me. And she gave me a followup appointment for three months out. In all of less than a minute, I was done. My 4:45 appointment was done at 4:31.

My yoga class, which is in the same building as my shrink, wasn’t scheduled to start until 6:15. I had time to kill, so I walked to the Mission Viejo library, which is just across the street.

I went to the online catalog and looked up “All The President’s Men”. Because I’m a non-fiction kind of guy. Two copies, both out. So I looked for “The Vegetarian.” One copy, on the shelves. Woohoo!

I found the book and sat down and started reading it. Interesting book. It was written by a woman from the point of view of a man, telling the story of his wife. The wife apparently had horrible nightmares that prompted her to become a vegetarian.

I really liked the writing style, and in no time I read about five pages into the book. I decided to keep the book and try to finish it for book club, which is exactly one week out. Only 188 pages. I think I can do it.

While I was reading, a young Asian woman walked up to me and said, “Is that ‘The Vegetarian’?” I said, “Yes, it is!” And she said, “Oh my God! I was just looking for that book!”

If I were someone else, this might have been the start of a new romance. Instead, my thought was “What luck! If I had arrived at the library ten minutes later, the one copy would have already been out!”

I felt a blog post coming on. I checked out the book and walked over to Yoga Works, checked in, changed into my yoga gear, and sat down on a chair in the lobby. And I took out my phone and typed up this post with my two thumbs. Finished just in time for yoga class.