Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Dearth of "Blogging" Seen As Eventful Weekend Approaches


A lot of writers are coming to town this weekend for some sort of conference, and you know how writers are. They need to be catered to and pampered at every moment! So we will be wining and dining some of them and being wined and dined by others in turn. It's part of a complex ecosystem of mooching, without which you would not enjoy the paperbacks so readily available in airports across our great nation this very day! On a more distressing note, the daylight hours of this weekend will be full of work and toil for yours truly, as Kent Osborne is flying in so we can put the finishing touches on the first draft of our script. Heady times! And the good part, of course, is that I will get to hang out with Kent. But the "blogging" shall certainly suffer. Speaking of "blogging" dearths, I am sorry to see that The Absorbascon "blog," which I have only recently discovered, is shutting down for awhile. But you should still visit and explore its many mysteries. There is a lot about "blogging" I don't understand. I tried to figure out why exactly the Absorbascon is shutting down, but the "comments" didn't make much sense to me at all... much like the idea of "comments" itself. Don't we all get enough "comments" in our daily lives? Why would we like to encourage the practice? Well, in a salute to the hobbled Absorbascon, I will leave you with a picture I found on it, one which dovetails nicely with our new feature "Your Daily Future." Farewell for the nonce!

Unannounced Napkin Adjustment

Hey, over at Esquire magazine they changed the "link" at which you can gaze at something I wrote on a napkin. I'm guessing that the old "link" probably doesn't work anymore, so I thought I would provide the new one in case you want to see something I wrote on a napkin but why would you, really?

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Your Daily Future

Welcome to our newest regular feature, "Your Daily Future," in which our resident psychic, Agent "M.," predicts the future, yes, YOUR future! Today's mystic scroll from Agent "M." just came through the vast network of pneumatic tubes that forms the very circulatory system of the Pendarvis Building: "I just had a premonition" (writes Agent "M.") "that we would have an earthquake today. A small one but large enough to spill my Coke on my keyboard. So I have put the cap on the precariously perched Coke and moved said Coke away from keyboard!" You heard it here first! Agent "M." also admired Ellen's and Peter O'Toole's velvet suits at the Academy Awards the other night. This has nothing to do with the future and everything to do with Agent "M.'s" exquisite taste in velvet suits. Okay, now I'm going to "Google" the term "Your Daily Future." I hope it's not taken! If it is, we'll have an exciting contest and come up with something else.

Niceness

Wow! Everyone was so nice to Theresa and me in South Carolina. Two of my favorite writers - George Singleton and John Warner - came out to say hello. And of course that other favorite writer o' mine, Ashley Warlick, who organized the whole thing. And after the reading I was mobbed by pleasant 16- and 17-year-olds who wanted me to sign their books. Mobbed is the wrong word. They actually formed a spontaneous yet preternaturally orderly line. The young generation! I had no idea the young generation was so kind and pleasant! I thought they just spent their time beating one another up for YouTube. But I was wrong! They also enjoy reading. And standing patiently in line while I try to think of smarmy one-liners with which to deface their books. Well, everyone was very nice, as I said. Much nicer than the happy talking squirrels of Cranberry Corners, who knocked me down and robbed me of my nuts. That's not "racy"! It's a simple statement of literal fact. Squirrels enjoy nuts, such as walnuts and pecans. Look it up!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Monday

Hi! Maybe you're reading this at work on Monday, as a way of asserting your individuality under the boot of "the man." Good for you! Well, if you live near Greenville, SC, come see me "do" a "reading" tonight! "Click" here for the details. This was set up by the good Ashley Warlick. You can research Ms. Warlick on the ill-fated "blog"dex if you like! It's a poor substitute for coming out and meeting her in person at the reading, but at least maybe all the "clicking" will keep you occupied until my triumphant return to the "blog."

McNeil Regroups


Jeff McNeil says that he has run out of things to say about movies. Therefore, McNeil's Movie Korner, our popular and long running feature, has come to a temporary end. Mr. McNeil, in a statement released earlier today, says that he plans to spend his retirement from the Korner looking up interesting things on EBay. "A novelization of the sitcom 'The Girl With Something Extra' [a former object of "blog" scrutiny] can be had for a buck," McNeil remarks by way of example. "There's a pic of the cover and everything," he goes on. "It is written by Paul W. Fairman, who also wrote some of the books in the Partridge Family series, as well as something called 'The Orgy at Madame Dracula's - The Man from S.T.U.D.' He wrote that under a pen name." We wish Mr. McNeil the best of luck in his intriguing new career! (Note: the novelization pictured is NOT by Mr. Fairman. I hope that doesn't blow your mind!)

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Spectral Fur Conclusion


Did you hear that "blog" contributor Agent "M." has turned out to be a psychic? It's true! She has offered the following statement as irrefutable proof: "I said the other day that I thought we would see my old buddy J*** K*** at the Gillian Welch show, and there he was. That same day, as I was walking by this house I thought to myself, Why don't I ever see that yellow lab here anymore, and then all of a sudden, it came running towards me as if I had conjured it! I said the night before A**** N***** S**** died that I thought she would probably 'not last long' given her drug-like state, and then...well, she didn't! I have always felt that I had a 6th sense, but lately it has become stronger...waaahaaahaaa, says the mad scientist! J*** K***'s wife A****** says that I have 'The Secret'--do you know of this DVD and book? I may have to go out and get a copy!" Here Agent "M.'s" communique mysteriously breaks off! I have not cleared this with Agent "M.," but I believe I will start soliciting questions from you, the "blog" reading public, to pass along to her. Let Agent "M." advise you on matters of the heart! Let Agent "M." guide you through the murky future!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Agent "M.'s" TV Korner: Psychic Twist


Welcome back to another exciting episode of Agent "M.'s" TV Korner, where the mysterious Agent "M." tells you all her innermost thoughts about television. Today Agent "M." writes in to say she has been "in the trenches," but pondering television in her spare time, too. Thank the Lord! Here she is on the subject of VERONICA MARS: "The good news [in the most recent episode] was that Mac overcame her sexual nervousness, which gives us all hope that the same can happen to us, right? And now on to LOST...the question remains: am I becoming a jaded LOST fan? Say it isn't so. Maybe I just don't like the idea of having back surgery or being branded on my lower back. Of course, they make jeans so low these days that at least they wouldn't rub on the brand if I did decide to get one. Over and out..." We at the "blog" must add that there is also an offhand line in Agent "M.'s" recent correspondence, indicating that she has discovered herself to be psychic. To which we reply: "Whaaaa.....?" More on that later, we hope! (Pictured, Sally Field, star of the psychic sitcom THE GIRL WITH SOMETHING EXTRA, which aired in late '73 and early '74 on NBC.)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

On the "Internet"

Hey everybody I was on the "internet" just now and noticed that the movie based on the story from my book has "friends." That's what I said, all right! You're not going crazy! No need to check your glasses! The movie based on the story from my book has, it claims with bald assurance, "63 friends"! A movie has friends! More friends than I do! What kind of crazy world are we living in these days with all the crazy things in it and so forth that we can hardly understand from all their craziness and such?

The Human Mimosa!

Y'all know about my favorite Aquaman "blog." Well, today there's an examination of an old story in which Aquaman has to swim in champagne, and later in orange juice! And then in some other things, but I don't want to spoil it for you.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Agent "M.'s" TV Korner: Special Guest Columnist, Jack Pendarvis

Hello, and welcome to the latest episode of Agent "M.'s" TV Korner. I'm Jack Pendarvis, and today I'll be sitting in for Agent "M.," who is on assignment. Tonight's episode of LOST was impeded somewhat, in the Pendarvis Building, by the charming escapades of our always impish and mercurial upstairs neighbors. It seems that they have given their dogs a bag to play with, a bag most probably containing, based on aural evidence, a large number of human heads. I am sure there is a logical explanation! No doubt the heads were obtained quite legally, as part of a scientific experiment for the betterment of humankind! So of course we cannot in good conscience be upset about what appears (or sounds) to be such an altruistic gesture. In fact, the torturously methodical way in which the heads were pushed around the room, over and over, by the noses of the tireless dogs in question, is a sure sign of some sort of highly specialized and regulated test. Good for our upstairs chums! I salute their enterprise! But it was a little hard to keep up with LOST with all the excitement and industry taking place right over our heads. At one point, I went so far as to bang on the ceiling with a broom handle as a hearty and enthusiastic show of support for the "scientific method," well known as a boon to all! This got the frolicsome pups worked up all the more! Here's an interesting detail: The dogs began cavorting with their sack of skulls (or what-have-you) just before LOST began airing at 10 o'clock EST. At 10:54 p.m., they briefly curtailed their rambunctious task, which had been going on NON-STOP, to engage in a spirited fight, complete with frightening yelps and growls! At around 10:56, things grew ominously silent, allowing us to view the last two or three minutes of LOST in "peace," yet overcome with suspense and worry about our erstwhile jolly canine pals! A mixed blessing to be sure, this strange "peace" we "enjoyed"!

The Fall


I see that Lizabeth Scott has fallen off of the bottom of the "blog" again. Don't worry! Here's another picture of her.

That's Right, I Said Denouement

I have some more diet ginger ale material... it's killer stuff! The material I mean, not the diet ginger ale, which is a healthful alternative to the usual sodas, I'm sure. But somehow my typing energy is on the wane. I thought for sure we'd have an "Agent 'M.'s' TV Korner" today, given the shocking denouement of last night's VERONICA MARS. But I reckon Agent "M." is still sitting in front of the television with her mouth hanging open after that one! We all are. So, light "blogging" today.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The Schedule on the Web Site of the Movie of the Story from the Book

So, if you check that web site I told you about the other day, you will see that they have added a schedule of showings! "FYI," as we say in the "blogging" business.

Diet Ginger Ale

Jeff McNeil has dispatched an urgent telegram to the Pendarvis Building. It seems that because of the medication he is on, all he can drink is diet ginger ale! We are trying to think of a way to work this information into a regular feature of some kind.

Today's Weather: Special Yesterday's Weather Edition

Welcome once again to our newest regular feature, "Today's Weather." We have some more news on the wind in New York City and what it did to Amanda Stern. "I did not get blown away, after all," Stern reports. "But I think my teeth have hypothermia." To which the "blog" responds, "Holy cow!" If you have ever read Stern's novel THE LONG HAUL, you know there is a great chapter all about driving in the ice.

Monday, February 19, 2007

McNeil's Movie Korner: Special Love Edition Addition


Welcome back to McNeil's Movie Korner. As you may recall, Mr. McNeil was previously upset by the "blog's" definition of love. He also expressed a desire to produce a "special love edition" of his recurring feature. This "post" should address both issues. McNeil would like to quote (or paraphrase, the "blog" is not sure) Tony Curtis from WHO WAS THAT LADY?: "The true meaning of love is when a man vows to give up kissing foreign exchange students," McNeil says that Curtis says in that film. "COME ON!" adds McNeil, in what seems to be a forceful plea for shared affirmation.

The Aforementioned Super-Apes


Pretty!

A Little "Bloggier"


Just when you're feeling not-too-"bloggy," a "blog" comes along that restores your faith in "blogs." Such was the case this very morn with "The Absorbascon," a "blog" I found out about through "clicking" on "links" at my favorite Aquaman "blog." Now I am not saying that "The Absorbascon" is everyone's cup of tea. My publisher, for example, might rashly eschew it! But let me just lay this on you: "The Absorbascon" taught me about some old comic book characters I had somehow overlooked for my entire life until now. I am referring, of course, to Red Ghost and the Super-Apes. Red Ghost and the Super-Apes! Their name alone makes me so very happy. That's Red Ghost in the accompanying picture. Thank you, "The Absorbascon"!

Not Too "Bloggy"

I'm not feeling very "bloggy" today.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

This Was Pop Gear

Just caught the end of POP GEAR again, and it was exactly as I remembered it. Only this time I came in a little earlier - just a tiny, little bit... weirdly, I came in at almost exactly the same time - and caught The Dance of the Girls in the Golden Pants. And I tried to pay a little more attention to the lyrics at the end. The guy looked right into the camera, addressing me, the audience: "You were the problem child/ In a time when music sings." And I was like, Do what? And at the end he told me again, through his musical language of singing, "This was Pop Gear!" And I was like, Awesome.

Poster


Hey, world, take a gander at this! The short film of a story from my first book has its very own movie poster. And somehow the movie became anthropomorphic and snagged its very own "MySpace" page, as the kids call it. What a confusing yet compelling world it is we live in these days with all the modern technology and such.

Today's Weather: NYC Edition

Welcome back to what we just now this very minute decided is a new recurring feature here at the "blog": Today's Weather. This is where people write in and tell us what their weather is like! Hot off the wire, Amanda Stern reports, and we quote, "I just heard a metal garbage can fly down my street." Forecast for NYC... Windy!

Let's Go Through Karen's Mail! Chapter Three: Belated Valentines

You know how we love to go through Karen's mail! We've been so busy lately, we've barely had time. And even this batch comes from a few days ago. But we're happy to report that Karen received two valentines, if just a tad past the holiday. One came from Fairfax, VA, the other from Spokane. The one from Spokane had a York mint in it. We ate it and resealed the envelope. What Karen doesn't know won't hurt her!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Wood Sprites


Don't forget, the "blog" will be "down" for a few days as we merrily traipse off to Cranberry Corners, which, as we understand it, is populated by wood sprites or talking chipmunks. Either way is awesome! So come on up and join us.

Jeff McNeil Doesn't Understand the Problem

"Of course you can eat a sandwich and read a newspaper," writes Jeff McNeil. "I don't understand the problem. Hold the paper with one hand and the sandwich with the other. If the sandwich is too big, then lay the paper down on the table while you hold the sandwich, or lay the sandwich down and chew while you read the paper."

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

McNeil's Movie Korner: Special Love Edition

So McNeil calls and says he has an idea for McNeil's Movie Korner. "What is it?" I say. "The special love edition," says McNeil. "Lay it on me," says I. "That's all I've got," says McNeil.

Another Robin

Mr. Whorton expects 4 to 6 inches of snow in his part of Upstate New York today, but reports seeing a robin this morning anyway.

The Sandwich Front

Much to report on the sandwich front: My sister claims that it is impossible to eat a sandwich while reading a newspaper. We brainstormed about tongs for awhile, but it came to naught. James "Jim Whorton" Whorton, Jr., on the other hand, says, and I quote, "It is OK to taste newsprint. When I was in fifth grade I knew a fellow who brought his lunch to school, a sandwich, wrapped, by his mother, in, newsprint. Every day!" While Caroline Young has this to offer: "I cannot help you on the newsprint conundrum. I don't eat sandwiches. But I do read all of my news on the spotless internet. Problem is, I am always enjoying a croissant while I do so. Question. If you think it is tough avoiding newsprint in your mouth, how do I retrieve croissant crumbs from my keyboard? Years of rejected breakfast lie between qwerty and and uiop." So, it seems that even with all our modern technology we have these days, the problems of the universe remain. Golly!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Problematic

Well, Mr. McNeil has at last provided his own definition of love, but it is much too morbid to be related here, due to the "blog's" exacting standards of happy talk and optimism. This is not censorship! And now, on to another problematic subject. Here in the Pendarvis Building there is nothing we like to do better than eat sandwiches and read newspapers. Yet how does one go about eating a sandwich while reading a newspaper? The problem is that one recoils from the thought of transferring newsprint into one's mouth. We are currently accepting suggestions. The winner of "The International Newspaper Sandwich Award" will have his or her name "posted" on the "blog"!

McNeil Proves Intractable: Nation Stunned

Jeff McNeil contends that I have improperly defined love in my most recent "post." Yet he has not stepped forward with an alternative description. We eagerly await word from this self-styled Grinch of Valentine's Day.

Love

The two questions we receive most often at the old "blog" are a) How's that new belt working out for you? and b) What's the deal with love? Luckily, I have a little anecdote that answers both questions, just in time for Valentine's Day. So, the other night, when Theresa and I were getting ready to go to dinner, I discovered that I had lost sufficient weight to make my new belt, of which I had been erstwhile so justifiably proud, turn loose and slack and useless. But it was time for dinner! There was no opportunity for belt shopping! Theresa took matters in hand. With nothing more than a hammer and a common nail, she made a new, emergency notch for my belt, so that it could be tightened properly. Love!

Agent "M.'s" TV Korner: Action Figure


Welcome once again to Agent "M.'s" TV Korner. This time, Agent "M." would like us to know about the LOST action figures she has found on the Toys R Us "web" site. They are creepy! Take this one (pictured, left) of Charlie as he contemplates the horrors of heroin addiction. Detailed and lifelike. Oodles of fun. Makes a great stocking stuffer! P.S. I know, it looks like a photo of an actual person. That's just one of the creepy things about it. You have to magnify the image several times before it begins to look like an action figure, which it actually is. The fun part is that all the "action" goes on in his brooding and troubled mind. Cool!

Monday, February 12, 2007

New Horizons In "Blogging"

I had a very long phone message from Jeff McNeil, in which he covered three or four topics. At the end, he referred to the preceding message as his "audio 'blog.'" McNeil's concept is invigorating! It opens up the possibility of "blogging" to people who do not have "computers." Another idea is to stand in front of apartment buildings and toss tiny pebbles at peoples' windows. Then when they open their windows to ascertain what's going on, you "blog" at them verbally.

Bludos

Meanwhile, Jim Ruland writes in to say, "Thanks for the bludos aka 'blog' kudos!" This is a great new word and we expect everyone to start using it. Now.

Happy Lincoln's Birthday!

I don't know who sent me this e-card for Lincoln's birthday ("click" here to see it). Maybe it was a certain Lincoln expert of my acquaintance, or perhaps it's from the Great Man himself, as is claimed. In any case, it's the awesomest Lincoln's birthday card I've ever received in any format, e- or otherwise.

Oops!


Well, it looks like we've accidentally knocked Lizabeth Scott off the bottom of the page again. So here is a new picture of Lizabeth Scott, which we hope will last us for awhile.

Cranberry Corners

Hello, friends! Well, the old calendar tells me that I'll be at a place called Cranberry Corners in Dahlonega, GA, at ten in the morning on Saturday, giving everyone a little taste of the old Pendarvis magic. You know the old saying: Saturday + 10AM + Cranberry Corners + Jack Pendarvis = all the ingredients of a successful and jam packed reading of my humorous comedy pieces! So get there early! I suggest 6AM. You can watch me doing the three-and-three-quarter hour facial acting exercises with which I prepare each carefully crafted performance!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

"Blog" Celebrates 400th "Post"

We are pleased to report that a recent entry, "Melancholy Chicken Substitution," was the 400th thought we have had since September. As we pause to consider the rich history of our ever-growing "blog," let us take a moment to remember some of the "posts" that have gone before. How about the time I acted like Marilyn Monroe? Or my precious reflections on the deliciousness of taffy? My controversial views on grooming? Or the old table that caused such a ruckus! Perhaps you have your own "faves." The nostalgically minded may enjoy looking back on the "hoopla" that accompanied our 300th "post."

McNeil's Movie Korner: Special "Web" Edition Annex

Welcome to a special postscript to an already special "Korner." Jeff McNeil reports finding a new treasure on that "web" site we recently discussed: A woman who says she can reduce your stress level in THREE SECONDS OR LESS! McNeil contends that even the idea of reducing his stress in three seconds or less causes his stress to rise precipitously. A challenge then, a gordian knot, this Jeff McNeil! What stress expert could ever tame him?

Money



That's right, I'm back from the brink. I had a wonderful time. There were a lot of enthusiastic book lovers at the conference, and I was made to feel very welcome by all the people I met. I hung out with some nice writers, too. J. Wes Yoder and I discovered that we both love Truffaut and Godard. I also had a long, pleasant talk with the poet Natasha Trethewey. Both of our last names - Trethewey and Pendarvis - are Cornish. That accounted for just a small percentage of our conversation, which came to a close at the Bama Grill, the only place in Jacksonville, Alabama that stays open past one in the morning. It was earlier in the evening, over drinks with J. Wes and Natasha, when I happened to discover that I am the least well paid writer in America! Less than poets, even. POETS! Poets, who are famous as a group for not being paid very well... indeed, for starving to death in their freezing cold garrets while an indifferent world passes by outside. (This money issue has nothing to do with "On the Brink," by the way, who were very kind to us in that regard. It was just a general topic of the kind that should never, never come up in a bar.) Anyway, it's not about the money. It's about spreading literature throughout the land. Oh yes, another fun fact is that I seem to be the oldest writer in America, too. (Pictured, J. Wes Yoder and Natasha Trethewey, two writers who are younger, richer, thinner, and much better looking than me.)

Robins!

So on my way home from Savage Pizza I saw what I suppose was a whole flock of robins. I don't think I've ever seen more than one or two of them hanging out. But today I counted sixteen in one small spot. It was a robin party! Crazy, this world we live in these days.

Melancholy Chicken Substitution

I walked over to Savage Pizza today to get my favorite sandwich EVER! That sandwich: the Marinated Chicken Sub. I ordered it! Hold the lettuce and mayo, but give me the rest of the works! And the woman who was taking my order told me that the Marinated Chicken Sub has been DISCONTINUED! "You know how we do," she said. But no, I did not! I did not know how they do! They discontinue things. Delicious things. They even discontinue the best sandwich of all time. But the thing that stings the most is that I have let you down, yes, you, the people of the world. I have always meant to "blog" about the Marinated Chicken Sub. But not like this! Not like this!

Friday, February 09, 2007

One For the Road

I have no time for dilly-dallying and "blogging" and such! I need to get on the road. But a moving radio transmission from Mark Osborne demands transcription here: "Walking into the Starbucks in Burbank," Mr. Osborne reports, "I saw just a regular Joe smoking a cigarette using a short shiny black cigarette holder. I have never seen one before this. Thanks to the informative and enlightening nature of your 'blog' I feel like I can now see. Thank you." No, thank you, Mr. Osborne! It is gratifying to think that the "blog" has touched so many lives. But we feel that we must nip something in the bud. Seeing cigarette holders everywhere is both a blessing and a curse! Mostly a curse! We do not encourage the practice. And really, we must ask not to hear of outside cigarette holder sightings unless absolutely necessary. We have enough trouble with cigarette holders that we have seen for ourselves! This would also preclude such phone calls as one we received recently from Brooklyn, in which a well intentioned member of Hubcap City told us that he had NOT seen any cigarette holders in that borough.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

McNeil's Movie Korner: Special "Web" Edition


Welcome to another exciting episode of McNeil's Movie Korner! This time we are not talking about movies at all, so it is an especially exciting day for us here at the "Korner." Expanding our horizons! As you know, I am going to be gone from the "blog" for a few days. Well, Jeff McNeil has found a "web" site he thinks you will enjoy passing the time with, one which may soothe you in the absence of the "blog." McNeil stumbled across a site on which you can find the perfect keynote speaker for your event or gathering. The object of McNeil's particular fancy was a woman who speaks on the subject of how to pick out your clothes in the morning. Now we have had some difficulty in locating this specific speaker, as you will see when you visit the site. But the way it is set up makes it even more exciting to spend your many free hours "clicking" away! When you hit the "Speaker Showcase" button again and again, you will be taken again and again to various random speakers. There is no way to control it! Who knows which speaker, with what peculiar or inspiring specialty, you will hit upon next? And by "clicking" on the "Learn More About..." button, you will learn more about that speaker! We feel that this is a never-ending rainbow of delight, turning in upon itself like that famous snake that eats its own tail. Fun!

Postscript

In keeping with the "positive" credo of the "blog," we should remark that over at the Pendarvis Building we watched last night's LOST with mouths agape. Agent "M.'s" points, while cogent to us in hindsight, sailed right over our heads at the time! Plus it was awesome when ** ***** *** **** ***** ** *****! Although we did see it coming when **** *** got *** by a ***.

Agent "M.'s" TV Korner: Disbelief



Welcome to another edition of Agent "M.'s" TV Korner! Today, Agent "M." writes in about last night's episode of LOST. So as to avoid any "spoilers," the "blog" censors have taken a heavy hand, I fear, with Agent "M.'s" entry. Here, then, is what we can share of Agent "M.'s" thoughts: "So just when you think that Richard Grieco is the only male actor with that natural eyeliner thing going on, along comes Nestor Carbonell (formerly of that hit show, Suddenly Susan) on last night's episode of LOST. Speaking of which, let me just say a little something about this whole thing we call 'willing suspension of disbelief.' Why is that up until last night I have been able to suspend disbelief regarding, well, basically everything that has happened in 2.5 years (or 50 days in LOST time) on that island, and then I fly into a fitful rage when *** ***** **--and is coherent--in the middle of *** ******** **** ******* ************ that Jack is/is not ********* on him? ************ is the only word I can come up with. As my friend Teresa (not to be confused with Theresa of "blog" fame) pointed out, *************** get paid way too much to mess up something like that. But then Juliet (Elizabeth Mitchell) is clearly no ************, is she, people? No, she is a ************ miracle worker--she ************ her own sister (not the old-fashioned way, mind you!)--and has thus become oh-so-attractive to the Dharma folks. Let this be a lesson to us all---don't excel at your job or you will end up being forced into **** ********* ** **********."

Something Funny to Say to Your Friends


We're taking "Blog" Buddy Caroline for a belated birthday dinner at a real old-school French restaurant. You know something funny that Caroline sometimes says in such a circumstance? She calls Chateauneuf-du-Pape "She Had Enough to Pop." And we usually do! Use that one on your friends, but be sure to give Caroline credit.

Brink

Watch out, everybody! I'm on the brink this weekend. Join me, won't you?

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Comb

On the first morning of my recent trip to California I discovered that I had forgotten to pack my comb! So I combed my hair with my fingers and it worked out perfectly fine. No, more than fine. It worked splendidly. Splendidly! Reader, I never bought a comb on that trip. This is what the powerful comb lobby doesn't want you to know!

"Blog" Touches Untold Millions

Dinner at the home of Kimb and Mark Osborne the other night in L.A. Turns out that Mr. Osborne is an avid reader of the "blog." He had a suggestion: More entries about our intriguing and energetic upstairs neighbors. We are taking it under consideration, Mr. Osborne! He had, also, a reasonable request, which was for a clarification of our recent "post" titled "Napkin." I really should have explained that the napkin was part of a larger project, and I certainly should have mentioned that "Blog" Buddy Jim Ruland was also invited to participate in that project. To paraphrase a wise old song, "'Blog' Buddies are Doing It For Themselves!" Finally, Kimb (the enchanting and endlessly creative bride of Mr. Osborne) offered me some Lady Grey tea, to the shameless laughter of all present. Yes, my own "blog," by revealing all my terrible and private weaknesses, had worked against me! But it was all in good fun and many homemade cookies were consumed in a spirit of fellowship. (Click here to see an Academy-award nominated film by Mr. Osborne!)

Agent "M.'s" TV Korner

Hello, and welcome to a new "blog" feature, Agent "M.'s" TV Korner, which we feel will take its rightful place alongside Pia's Composer Korner and McNeil's Movie Korner. Let's get things started with last night's episode of VERONICA MARS, the special guest star of which is the subject of Agent "M.'s" communique: "Just wanted to give a shout out to Richard Grieco whom I love! I wish my eyes had that sort of natural eyeliner look--I would never have to buy Clinique Charcoal Brown Eyeliner pencil again!" This has been Agent "M.'s" TV Korner. See you next time!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The Wire

Speaking of THE WIRE, my friends at the corner video store tell me that episodes of the show have become their most popular rentals. I can only attribute the surge to the uncanny power of this very "blog."

Braggy

Hey, something happened to me a while back but I didn't mention it because it seemed too "braggy" to go on the "blog." Boastfulness is unbecoming in any medium! But now one of the "players" involved has made it public, so I feel that it is "okay" to mention. You know how I love that show THE WIRE above all others, right? Well, one of the creators of THE WIRE, David Simon, called me up on two consecutive nights to flatter me about my writing abilities and shower me with words of encouragement! Now that Ms. Laura Lippman, who is, I believe, the spouse of Mr. Simon, and a renowned author herself, has written about the incident on her "blog," or what I think is a "blog" (I'm still not 100% solid on what a "blog" is), I feel fine about telling the world that I received (and missed) two calls from one of the creators of the best TV show of all time. You need to start with season one.

Cigarette Holder!

I am sick of explaining why, but as you know, the only reason this "blog" exists is to list all the times I spot a man with a cigarette holder. Well, on Sunday evening, as Kent and I began to wind down from our work for the day, we watched a DVD of a Coen Brothers movie entitled THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE. At one point the main character Ed Crane (Billy Bob Thornton) brings his young friend Birdie (Scarlett Johansen) to a renowned piano teacher (Adam Alexi-Malle). This gentleman uses a cigarette holder! At an earlier date I said that dramatically speaking, cigarette holders signify the jaunty or the evil. I must now add the category of affected aesthete to this list.

Fight!


Only one bad thing happened in California. Kent and I got in a terrible argument over Jerry Lewis! The argument centered around the terrifying question "What if Jerry Lewis had never been born?" Our opinions differed as to the outcome of this hypothetical occurrence! I cannot get into the details, which are too painful to relate. I can only say that Kent and I parted chums, bearing in mind as always the fourth "blog"mandment.

Timely Elevator Continuation

Speaking of elevators, several years ago Mark Osborne (Kent's brother) and I got on an elevator with Michael Stipe, who was wearing a large cowboy hat. We did not accost Mr. Stipe, but kept, rather, a respectful silence, all the while darting our eyes back and forth at one another meaningfully. And now I believe we come to the conclusion of my chronicles of all the times I have been on an elevator with a celebrity. The End.

Monday, February 05, 2007

I See Celebrity People


It's been too long, friends! But now I'm back from "Tinseltown" and ready to spread trivia throughout the universe, wherever people have "computing" machines in their homes, businesses, and places of worship. One exciting thing about going to the Los Angeles area is wondering what celebrities you will see. You will almost always see at least one! It is never the celebrity you would ever imagine seeing, were you asked to imagine seeing a celebrity. For example, many years ago I witnessed Tim Kazurinsky picking up a bag of breakfast to go. I wonder what Tim Kazurinsky eats for breakfast! I didn't have the nerve to ask. And now I guess I'll never know. Last year, when I was about to do a reading in a bookstore, I saw Vanessa Redgrave buying an atlas! A classy choice, Ms. Redgrave! On this most recent trip, however, I had begun to fear that I would have no celebrity sightings. And I almost didn't! It took all the way until I was getting on the elevator to leave the hotel. Who should get on the elevator with me but Barry Sonnenfeld, the former Coen Brothers D.P. turned director. I overheard him telling his elevator chum that his wife was from Ft. Worth! This is not the kind of information you can get just anywhere. Then he began talking about shooting BLOOD SIMPLE in Austin. He and his elevator chum began praising Austin. "GOOD CHEAP FOOD!" I screamed, to get into the conversation. They agreed that there was good cheap food in Austin. Then we almost got out on the 2nd floor rather than the lobby. Oh, how we chuckled inwardly at that! Just three regular fellows on an elevator! Which reminds me, a few years ago (1999, I'm fairly sure) I scared Marvin Hamlisch on an elevator. I wanted to talk about all the many things we had in common! But that was back in 1999, when I used to be stupid. Believe it or not, I actually had one more celebrity sighting TODAY, before I got on my airplane, but my goodness this "post" is getting long, so perhaps I should keep you in suspense until tomorrow. (Pictured, Marvin Hamlisch.)