Friday, August 16, 2013

Because I Like to Party

A nice note from Leslie! And I quote: "I recently went to a natural history museum and saw all kinds of owls in dioramas of their alleged natural habitats. The placards were very funny to me. I took bad pictures of them to send to you. I imagine you are like 'Andy' in Pretty in Pink in one of my favorite self-improvement montages in which she uses weird crappy old dresses to make one magic prom dress. I tried to find the video of the montage. It's not there. No one cares. Oh well. I do. Maybe these weird crappy owl photos can turn into to one magic owl dress." But I care, Leslie! Thanks! Yet there is something perverse about my choice of an example here; it's the owl arrangement I find most offensive and unsettling. Like, "Let's stuff these dead murdered owls full of sawdust and line them up on a branch like a cute little family, aren't they cute." Maybe the best thing about the plaques is that they give each owl its own dramatic subtitle. "Great Horned Owl: Ruler of the night." "Snowy Owl: Ghostly visitor from the north." The hapless short-eared owl just gets "An unusual owl." That smarts! Poor short-eared owl, just like Cyndi Lauper, she's so unusual, but in that case it was a compliment. (Was the "Andy" segment in PRETTY IN PINK inspired by Lauper at all, or has my shaky sense of the past reached its next level of muddy blur, just preceding the abyss?) Hey but I want to tell you, that great horned owl is one scary customer all right. His plaque lists all the things he loves to kill. I don't even want to tell you. "They will even usurp the active nests of eagles," is another terrifying thing from the plaque. Usurping the nests of mighty eagles! WHAT! A while back Leslie sent what I believe is her all-time favorite self-improvement montage, featuring Michael J. Fox as the TEEN WOLF. I didn't "post" it. It was around nine minutes long, like those youtube clips McNeil likes to send, and there was lots of padding around the montage. Plus whoever put it on the youtube did some editing of his or her own, flipping the images from black-and-white to color for some expressive personal reason, a touch Leslie really enjoyed. ("Why is it black and white and color?" asks one plaintive youtube commenter. "Because I like to party," answers the "poster.") None of this is any excuse. On her last visit Leslie had us in stitches quoting from memory the TEEN WOLF montage song ("You gotta go with the flow, Joe... way to go, way to go.") and told us about showing the TEEN WOLF montage to a bunch of students who said, "Why are you showing us this?" I can't remember the answer.