Monday, July 30, 2007

A Noble Spirit Embiggens the Smallest Man

I've been a Simpson's fan since their days as ugly line drawings in three-minute shorts on the Tracy Ullman show. I taped every episode since the very first one, bought the action figures, read the books (even the "real" ones like The Simpson and Philosophy, and Planet Simpson), and have devotedly obtained the DVDs.

Yeah, I'm a geek.

So naturally when the opportunity came to see what I would look like as a Springfieldianite, well, how could I refuse. Here is me, Simpsonized:
The Simpsonized Monkey

Now, when I saw this, I didn't think it was right. I always fancied myself as being a bit more ruggedly handsome than this. I mean, this guy looks like a dork. However, when the MonkeyWife saw it she burst out laughing and assured me this was almost frighteningly accurate. My friends agreed. Now, not being our Idiot Boy-King, I don't blindly cling to a belief when all those around me say the opposite, so I have come to embrace my cromlulent, Simpsonized self.

You can do yourself at Simpsonize Me.

Ook ook.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The difference between cats and dogs

I know, it's an eternal debate with no resolution.

I know, it's completely subjective.

I know, it's an invalid comparison, and only serves to start arguments.

I know, it uses absolutes to discuss nuance.

Still, there is a difference between cats and dogs. Setting aside the oft remarked personality traits of aloof versus social, cunning versus borderline brain-damaged, and regal versus sloppy, there is another difference between cats and dogs.

Evidently, dogs save lives -

Good dog!

While cats take lives.

I is the angel of death

Now, any dog person wouldn't be the least surprised to learn a 5lb speck of a dog would leap to the rescue of a piece of crotchfruit and take rattlesnake bites, but even the most rabid cat-haters would do a bit of a double-take at hearing about a cat moonlighting for the grim reaper. Personally, I never thought of cats as being bloodthirsty killers - I just thought they weren't as much fun as dogs. Now, it seems, they are also far more dangerous. I mean, a Pit Bull has to put in some effort and actually maul someone to kill them, but this cat just has to lay down in bed next to you to bring about the final curtain.

So what's the deal with this cat? Is he in tune with the supernatural realm, or is he the feline incarnation of Ted Bundy?
If Oscar were a nurse in this institution he'd be up on mass murder charges and facing a crowd carrying pitchforks and torches screaming for his head. Whatever the case, if I were around him I would be sure to keep as far away as possible. Just having this kitty circle your ankles while purring could mean a broken hip, or a heart attack.

If only there were some way to ship Oscar to the White House and have him sleep with Georgie, Dickie, and Condie ...

Ook ook

Saturday, July 21, 2007

It really is the thought that counts

Evidently, Prince Charles of the ludicrous ears and eternal child's title, presented the love of his life with a rather special and unique birthday gift: two rare sheep, one male one female.

The bleaters were said to have cost 300 Euros each, which I guess is a bit high by sheep standards. And, evidently, Camilla was very happy to receive them. Or, as the British press remarked, "Camilla is in fact, absolutely chuffed to bits."

Camilla being chuffed.

Side note, I have to admit to an almost pathological affinity for these UK colloquialisms: Chuffed, Knackered, etc.

Back to the point, the press goes on to explain that "the royal family have so much already that they don't actually give wildly extravagant presents." In other words, the eternal question finally has an answer. What to you give the person that has everything? Rare sheep. I suppose you can give rare mutton or leg of lamb to the person who has almost everything.

In any event, this has helped me out in a big way. The MonkeyWife's birthday is coming soon, and I have no idea what to get her. However, now I'm thinking a couple of guinea pigs, packaged as "Filigree Hamsters" might do the trick. Maybe she'll be chuffed too.

Filligree Hamsters in the act of chuffing

Ook ook

Friday, July 13, 2007


There is a slight buzz of excitement here in LA (though some would call it more a tectonic shift while others a waste of money and effort) as some athlete in an unpopular sport with a funny accent and hot C-List celebrity wife officially announces he will be playing for the LA team. At the press conference he'll mutter a few unmemorable lines about how excited he is to be in SoCal; list the expectations, goals, and plans he has for the team and the sport; deny that this move signals the twilight of his career; and say how much he is looking forward to playing with his new teammates and representing the organization. Then cameras will flash as he holds up the newly re-designed team jersey and smiles, and reporters from all over the world will breathlessly remark in extreme hyperbole about how this is a new beginning for the sport. Critics will be vicious in their condemnation of this move to the backwater of the sport, doubters will openly question the sanity of the money paid to this guy, and fans will faint by the dozens, while the franchise counts the profits from sales of their newly branded souvenirs.

Excuse me if I don't join the parade, but I’ve gone through this before.

About 20 years ago, to be exact. Back in the summer of 1988 it was some skinny geek with a big nose and a goofy smile named Wayne Gretzky announcing his move to the LA Kings. Suddenly everyone around was not only a Kings fan, but a hockey aficionado, willing to offer their unsolicited opinion on every facet of the game even if they didn’t know a fore check from a crosscheck, and looked like a pithed frog if you mentioned two-line pass. LA suddenly became "hockey central" and Kings games, which used to be lucky to see 5,000 fans in the stands, were suddenly the hot commodity. Hipness and style were associated with black and silver, and so-called celebrities were suddenly as much a part of the background of games as protective glass, beer, and foul language.

The Great One's coming out party

Fast forward to today, and it’s some nasaly-voiced pommy bastard with a heroin-chic wife and constantly evolving hair style named David Beckham bringing the media circus to Hollywood. And now, everyone will be a soccer expert, even if they pretend to be temporarily deaf when asked about their opinions about the 4-5-1 vs 4-4-2 formations, or have no idea what constitutes an offside. Soon we'll be seeing wanna-be starlets and tragically hip poseurs sporting the #23 Galaxy replica jerseys, and corporations will hold meetings at the Home Depot center to impress clients.

Becks bending it

Which is fine, I guess. I mean, the Gretzky experiment did result in a huge PR boost for hockey, and was directly responsible for new teams in San Jose, Florida, Tampa Bay and Anaheim, and franchises relocating from Quebec to Denver, Winnipeg to Phoenix, Minnesota to Dallas, and Hartford to Caronlina. But then, Gretz had an easier path of conquest, what with the NHL already being an accepted sport here in the states. Still, there is great hope that Becks can do what Pele, Johan Cruyff, George Best, Georgio Chinaglia, and Franz Beckenbauer couldn’t do back in the 70’s: make soccer popular.

Of course, those poor bastards had a harder field to till. In the 70’s when the NASL was around, soccer was most definitely a fringe game reserved for foreigners with unpronounceable names and ridiculous accents. I know because my dad was one of those foreigners, and we had regular seats to the LA Aztecs. Real Americans were not only openly contemptuous of the game, but at times almost hostile toward it. But the Beckster is coming in during a new era. Soccer, while still ridiculed, is not nearly as much a sport for the outsiders. Real Americans now beginning to watch and play. So maybe he can bring in the next age of the sport.

The only downside is now having to listen to innumerable ignorant dingbats offer their uninformed opinions and having to battle the curiosity seekers and bandwagon fans for tickets. It used to be I only had to put up with this once every four years. Still, if it works, it works.

Ook ook