Saturday, February 3, 2007

Shark Jumping 103

Time for another installment of the Best of, and this time I feature "The Cosby Show".  Keep in mind, these are comments submitted by various people, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of yours trulywell, MOST of them actually do, but not all...

—The overuse of that chubby white kid that was always over there and never said a word…

—The constant parade of elderly jazzmen cast as Cliff Huxtable’s relatives.  Did you ever see that parody on “The Simpsons”?  “Meet your new Grandpa—he’s a great jazz musician!”  “But we have three Grampas, already!”

The actress who played Sondra was far too pretty for the part.  They should have used a dorkier person with thick glasses or something.

—Definitely when Olivia joined the cast.  Is she the love child of Cousin Oliver from “The Brady Bunch” and Dee from “What’s Happening!”?

—Elvin was without as doubt the biggest pussy in the history of television.  I think he went on to play one of the Teletubbies…nah, even they’re too manly for him!

—Before Cuba Gooding, Jr. even became Jordy on ‘Star Trek’…there was Elvin.  If ever there was proof of The Man’s endless efforts to oppress people of color, Elvin was it.  This guy (and I use that term generously) made Urkel look like Schwarzenegger.

I was just waiting for Nelson Mandela to guest star as Cliff’s high school track coach.  Hell, who knows?  Maybe he did and I missed it.

—Grandpa—who seemed as light in the loafers as Elvin…

—The only facial expression she (Olivia) knows is that silicon-fake smile, which she turns on and off like a flaky Christmas light.

—How about the episode where Rudy took the $2.30 that Claire had left on the counter, and Claire proceeded to tear the house apart looking for it?  Come on, she’s a lawyer for Christ’s sake, married to a doctor, living in a million dollar brownstone in Brooklyn Heights, and she’s really gonna be that upset about losing $2.30?  Rudy could have found that money between the couch cushions!

—Does anyone remember the friend of Vanessa’s that talked really fast?  She used to drive me up the wall!!!  I swore that girl must be on crack!!

—What the heck was up with Vanessa’s hair (asymmetrical bush)…in what lifetime was that fashionable?  I am sure there is an unemployable hair/make-up person somewhere regretting the day that ‘do was done.

—As time goes on, “The Cosby Show” increasingly reeks from the same blandness and patness as “The Brady Bunch”.  Take race out of the equation and they are practically interchangeable.

And why was Olivia always dressed like a small circus performer?

—When Vanessa’s hair started to resemble that godawful wig Jan Brady tried sporting to differentiate herself from Marcia.

—When Theo went from being as smart as a thumbtack to being a Rhodes Scholar…When Vanessa started looking liked Weird Harold from the Cosby cartoons of the ‘70s…When Rudy’s mustache finally came in thicker than Theo’s…WAY TOO much of that damn son-in-law Elvin—that guy was way too light in the loafers and made me ashamed to be a man.

—First, Lisa Bonet becomes this walking freak show in a house full of conservative dressers (and she married a nerd—yeah, right!).  The older one’s husband whines more than Marge Simpson.  And don’t even get me started about Raven-Symone, the no-talent gnome.

—I think the show jumped the shark when I realized Rudy Huxtable had a thicker mustache than my dad.

—Denise (when she returned with the husband and Olivia) looked like she needed a good bath.  I think I could smell her through the TV.

—When comedians stop being funny and start being politically correct and opinionated, we all suffer.

—…later into the show, is it me or was everyone either paying tribute to a dead or near-death jazz musician, wearing a turban and African jewelry, or otherwise highlighting something or someone as though every month were Black History Month?

—Some of those sweaters Bill used to wear looked like some varmint puked on them.

Friday, February 2, 2007

Top 20 Debut Albums of All-Time

Time to reverse the negativity trend a bit, as I know I’ve been leaning a bit too hard on the Rant button lately, thus, I give you the best Rock ‘N’ Roll rookie efforts of all-time, and just for fun, I thought I'd try doing it David Letterman-style, starting with #20 first:

20) BLACK SABBATH—Black Sabbath (1970)  Ozzy and the boys scared the crap out of everyone with this little slab of Heavy Metal ghoulash, and Rock 'N' Roll ain't been the same since.  "N.I.B." and "The Wizard" are the two forgotten gems here...
19) THE WHO—The Who Sings My Generation (1965)  This one sounds a bit ratty in places (sometimes in a good way, like on the title track), and Roger Daltrey hadn’t quite matured as a singer yet (that didn’t happen until The Who Sell Out in 1967), but this LP’s a killer anyway.  Pete Townshend’s "A Legal Matter" is an overlooked classic here, as are "Circles" and "The Ox".
18) KATRINA & THE WAVES—Katrina & The Waves (1985)  Yes, "Walking On Sunshine" was their only true hit, but if you look beyond it, this whole album is pretty good stuff.  In my book, K&TW was like a really good bar band with a cute chick singer, with songs like "Red Wine & Whisky" (sic), "Going Down To Liverpool" (also a hit for The Bangles in '84), "Cry For Me", and "Machine Gun Smith".
17) THE POLICE—Outlandos D’Amour (1979)  This was far from their best album (Ghost In The Machine is my choice there), but this one was pretty tasty, well beyond just "Roxanne". I always liked "Born In The ‘50s" and "Can’t Stand Losing You", especially that line, "…and your brother’s gonna kill me and he’s six-feet-ten."
16) LED ZEPPELIN—Led Zeppelin (1969)  I’ve always thought "Dazed And Confused" was highly overrated here, but this album makes my list anyway since it contains two of my all-time Led Zep faves, "Communication Breakdown" and "How Many More Times", the latter being John Paul Jones’ finest hour (well, 8.5 minutes anyway) on the bass.
15) LYNYRD SKYNYRD—Pronounced leh-nerd skin-nerd (1973)  This one would make the list for "Free Bird" alone, but "Tuesday’s Gone", "Gimme Three Steps", and "Simple Man" are heavyweight stuff too.
14) MEAT LOAF—Bat Out Of Hell (1978)  "You Took The Words Right Outta My Mouth" was playing on my radio one day in late '78, and my brother walks in the room and says, "You listen to singing meat loafs?"  One of the funnier questions anyone’s ever asked me, but the answer is yes.  Bat is a classic of its own kind—Rock 'N' Roll meets Broadway and lives to tell about it!  Sadly, Sir Loaf has spent the last damn-near 30 years trying to top it and his desperation shows by his naming of subsequent albums Bat Out Of Hell II, Bat Out Of Hell III, etc. "All Revved Up With No Place To Go" should’ve been a hit from the original and wasn’t.
13) THE DOORS—The Doors (1967)  I may well be the only Doors fan on earth whose least favorite member of the band is Jim Morrison.  But, as pretentious and obnoxious as Mr. Mojo was, this was still a great first record, and this album was very ground-breaking and sounded so different from anything else at the time it came out.  Ray Manzarek makes Elton John look like a rank amateur on the piano, and he was quite possibly Rock’s first multi-tasker—since The Doors had no official bass player, he had to play that little bass organ along with the rest of his keyboard set-up.
12) THE CARS—The Cars (1978)  It took me a while to embrace these guys at first because they were so different.  What finally hooked me was that synthesizer bit by Greg Hawkes during the chorus on "You're All I've Got Tonight" as it literally echoed around Arrowhead Stadium as they opened for Fred Nugent in July, 1979.  The late Benjamin Orr is the unsung hero of this band, too—he was a much better singer than Ric Ocasek is, and he was pretty good on the bass, too.  Two hidden gems on this one are "Don’t Cha Stop" and "All Mixed Up".
11) A FLOCK OF SEAGULLS—A Flock Of Seagulls (1982)  Greatest Techno-Pop album ever recorded. These guys had all the soul of a doorstop, but for some reason, this album still worked!  And believe it or not, AFOS wasn't half-bad live in concert, either...
10) OZZY OSBOURNE—Blizzard Of Ozz (1981)  Pretty impressive stuff from someone who was down and out just a couple years before after getting booted out of Black Sabbath.  If Ozzy had never hooked up with the late Randy Rhoads, it’s doubtful his solo career would have gone anywhere, thus we’d never have known who Jack and Kelly and Sharon were.  Not sure whether to be thankful for the latter or not, but there’s NO denying what an awesome guitar player Randy Rhoads was.  His death and Stevie Ray Vaughan’s were two of the most devastating losses in Rock ‘N’ Roll history.
9) MOLLY HATCHET—Molly Hatchet (1978)  Hatchet came out of the chute with a nasty little debut record that rivaled anything Skynyrd or the Allmans ever did.  The late Danny Joe Brown had a distinctive growl, and it suited MH’s style perfectly.  "Bounty Hunter" and "Gator Country" were standout tracks, as well as their re-working of the Allman Bros.’ "Dreams" into "Dreams I’ll Never See", which blew the original away, and would’ve made my best cover songs list if there weren’t so many other good ones ahead of it.
8) ASIA—Asia (1982)  This was certainly a pleasant surprise when it came out, and it turned out to be the best debut album ever by a so-called "Supergroup" comprised of musicians from other famous groups.  This album was consistently good all the way through, and never boring like most of the stuff the band members played on in their former bands (Yes, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, King Crimson, et al.).  "Time Again" is an underrated gem here, as is "Here Comes The Feeling".
7) BLACK OAK ARKANSAS—Black Oak Arkansas (1971)  Okay, knock it off—stop laughing already!  This was a fun record, dammit!  And sometimes being fun is more important than being technically proficient, e.g., you won’t find King Crimson’s first album anywhere on this list.  To paraphrase an analogy Gene Simmons likes to make, "Sometimes you want Filet Mignon, and sometimes you want a big cheeseburger."  To wit, if Who’s Next is Filet Mignon, then BOA is a Double Whopper (with cheese).  From start to finish, Jim Dandy and crew served up a great little first album that rocked with a sense of humor to boot.  Their version of Marty Robbins’ classic "Singin’ The Blues" is a total hoot, and this one contains their classics "Hot And Nasty", "When Electricity Came To Arkansas" and "Lord Have Mercy On My Soul", the latter of which sounds an awful lot like the Hollies’ "Long Cool Woman" in places.  One of my all-time favorite albums, debut or otherwise.6) THE GO-GO’S—Beauty And The Beat (1981)  Alrightty now—setting aside any bias caused by my pubescent lust ("Lust To Love"?) for certain members of this band, I can honestly state that this was a damn good record!  As good as they were musically, The Go-Go’s don’t get nearly enough credit for their brilliant lyricism, with lines like "Discarded stars like worn-out cars litter the streets of this town" (from "This Town") and "Our love needs an overhaul," (from "Skidmarks On My Heart").  "We Got The Beat" and "Our Lips Are Sealed" are as good as it gets when it comes to Pop singles, too.  You Go-Go, Girls! (I just had to say that, yes...)
5) BOSTON—Boston (1976)  It pains me to do this, but even as sick to death as I am of hearing this band now on Classic Rock radio stations the world over, I still have to give it up to these guys for putting out one of the absolutely finest debut albums ever.  Boston sounded so polished, you’d have thought they’d been around for ten years or so already when this album came out.  One track I actually never get tired of hearing is "Peace Of Mind", especially its melodic outro as it fades.  It’s also pretty rare to find an album from which every track on it gets regular airplay on the radio (Led Zeppelin IV being the other prime example).  Boston could have gone down as one of the great American Rock bands of all-time if they hadn’t gotten so caught up in perfectionism, legal squabbles and ego-driven in-fighting throughout the rest of their career.  Damn shame...
4) THE RAINMAKERS—The Rainmakers (1986)  Best debut album that most of America has never heard.  These guys could have/should have been every bit as big as R.E.M. is, and could easily blow Michael Stipe & Co. off any stage on a bad night, but PolyGram Records did little or nothing to promote them, so Kansas City's own Rainmakers were sadly only able to achieve cult status, at best.  Too bad too, because singer Bob Walkenhorst is a freakin' brilliant songwriter with tunes like "Government Cheese", "Downstream", "Rockin’ At The T-Dance", and my personal favorite "Big Fat Blonde".  Being the dyed-in-the-wool cynic that I am, this album also contains one of my favorite all-time lyrics:  "The generation that would change the world is still looking for its car keys," (from "Drinkin' On The Job").
3) GUNS ‘N’ ROSES—Appetite For Destruction (1987)  A very apt title for such a self-destructive band, but a fucking killer album, debut or not.  Sadly, G'n'R seemed to have shot their wad here, and if Axl Rose wasn’t such a megalomaniac and/or dickhead, there’s no telling what else this band might have gone on to do in the ‘90s.  "Mr. Brownstone" and "You're Crazy" are the underrated classics here...
2) VAN HALEN—Van Halen (1978)  This album was the shot in the arm Rock ‘N’ Roll desperately needed at the height of the Disco era, and by dingies, we could sure use another one of those today, too!  Ironically, I actually consider "Runnin’ With The Devil" to be one of this album’s weaker tracks, even though it’s a classic amongst most VH fans. "I’m The One" and "On Fire" are even better, yet are sadly overlooked.  Fortunately, "Ain’t Talkin’ ‘Bout Love" and "Jamie’s Cryin’" are not overlooked, and "Eruption/ You Really Got Me" is downright immortal.
1) JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE—Are You Experienced? (1967)  I went back-and-forth trying to choose between this one and Van Halen as the best debut album of all-time, and finally settled on AYE mostly because it was about ten minutes longer and was so ground-breaking when it came out.  Even the so-called "B" tracks like "Love Or Confusion" and "May This Be Love" are great songs, as well as all the classics here like "Purple Haze", "Fire", "Hey Joe", "Manic Depression" and the title track.  An absolutely essential album in anyone's Rock collection.

HONORABLE MENTION: KISS—Kiss (1974)  What's that you say?  A mondo-Kiss fan like me doesn't even rank their debut album in the top 20?  Well there’s a reason.  This one would be in my Top 5 except for one thing—the record sounds flatter than the Kansas plains!  Great songs here, to be sure, but it's a piss-poor recording.  If Kiss had a decent producer at the time, this album might've out-Aced Van Halen, but the way it plods along in places, it just doesn't cut the proverbial cheese.  In fact, the demos for some of the songs herein (found on the Kiss CD box set) sounded so much better, like "Deuce","Firehouse" and "Strutter", and I can’t figure out why they didn’t just use them instead—they were so much more energetic than that which wound up on the album.  Fortunately, seven out of the ten tracks here received the proper treatment on Kiss Alive!, so all’s well that ends well.  Still, a majorly-missed opportunity...

Etc., ad infinitum...

Speaking of which, I can sorta relate to what Bill Murray went through in that film.  Every day at 4:30 PM, I hop in my car after work and turn the radio on to the all-sports station and they have the same debate raging every day—should Trent Green or Damon Huard be the Chiefs starting QB?  Too bad they don’t play "I Got You Babe" in the background…

The Home Depot hardware emporium I drive by every day isn’t doing very well on the upkeep of the signage on their building.  Either that, or they’re now called the "Ho Depot" at night!  Umm, the flourescent lights are found in Aisle 69...

You’ve no doubt seen these panel trucks that drive around with rotating advertisements on them?  I got stuck behind one today at a light on the way to work, when the ugly mug of one Geraldo Rivera (aka, Jerry Rivers) appeared on the back of it, promoting his psuedo-news show "Geraldo At Large".  I gave more than a fleeting thought to just flooring my car straight into his gnarly mustache, but I didn’t want to scuff my nice vehicle…

Well, after months of speculation, the Kansas City Wizards soccer team is going to play at Arrowhead Stadium in 2007 after all.  The ‘Head was supposedly not going to be available to our mighty Wizzes because of the upcoming renovations this year, but somehow it suddenly became re-available long about the same time Major League Soccer bagged the $250 million man, David Beckham—a potential windfall to the team when he comes to town.  Coincidence?  Nah, couldn’t be…

"Radar Love"—GOLDEN EARRING (1974) "I’m spinnin’ into a new sunrise," always sounded like "I’m spinnin’ into a nude sunrise," to my filthy little 10-year-old mind!

Ever watch Don Imus’s radio show on TV in the mornings on MSNBC?  This curmudgeon is such a crashing bore, I can’t believe someone hasn’t done an autopsy on him yet!  Now HERE’S that cure for insomnia I needed so badly the other night—too bad Imus doesn’t come on here until 6AM.  I caught part of the show this morning and he and his cronies were yapping about the former NFL players who are now suffering the after-effects of their injuries and how many are impoverished because the NFL pension money sucks for most of the pre-1980s players—a hot button topic during Super Bowl week, btw.  Anyway, the late Johnny Unitas’ name popped up and they talked about how toward the end of his life he was in a lot of pain, etc., and Imus chimes in with, "Well, whatever happened with him—is he dead now?"  Well, duh!  Unitas was only like the Mickey Mantle of pro football and he died like over four years ago!  Even a casual sports fan knows this, let alone a supposedly "well-informed" talking head like Imus.  What a maroon!  Please, Don, stick to kissing ass with Tim Russert, and stay away from sports from now on, okay Bud?  And can you believe that Imus—aka, "Mr. Personality"—was once a VH-1 VJ?!?  It's true—I'm NOT making that up…

By the way, watching a radio show—the most brilliant concept since "AM stereo"…

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

57 Channels And Nothin' On...

That’s one of my favorite song titles of all-time (thanks, Mistah Springsteen!), and it pretty well summed-up my channel-surfing exploits when I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t get back to sleep for some reason the other night.  Most times I can find an old favorite movie or at least a "M*A*S*H" rerun to occupy my brain, but there wasn’t squat on the tube that night.

On the infomercial front, I stumbled across my buddy Esteban (see previous post) on two different channels, as well as that faggy-looking guy hawking his "colon-cleanser" thing on three different channels, not to mention that obnoxious exercise bozo with the ponytail sticking out of his hat.  ESPN offered a choice of that phony Winter X-Games tripe (where they just kinda make up the events as they go along) or the "World Poker Lard-Butts Championships".  How many times do I gotta say this?  POKER IS NOT A SPORT!!!  Meantime, "Roseanne" and "Coach" reruns were on Nick At Nite, "Gunsmoke" was on TV Land, the sleazy faith healers were on BET and our old friend Rev. Jimmy Swaggart was on Spike TV begging for money as usual, so it was looking pretty bleak for me.

I got so desperate that I actually found myself watching the Home Shopping Network where these two gals were hawking hairpieces.  Hard to imagine anyone getting the urge to order up a wig at 3:30AM, but apparently some women do.  I also thought it rather odd that one of the hostesses was dressed like she should have been home scrubbing her toilet instead of being on TV, until I realized she was modeling the crap they were hawking in the next segment after the wigs!

I finally gave up altogether when I flipped back to ESPN and that damn Enzyte "natural male enhancement" commercial was on with that "Bob" geek smiling at me.  How can it be "natural" if you have to take drugs to get it up?  No thanks—I don’t need any drugs to get my Little General to work, AND if taking this stuff renders you looking like this cretin, I think I’d rather be impotent!

To avoid insomnia in future, I’m going to buy myself a copy of that Gwyneth Paltrow movie The Hours and keep it handy—I’ve heard that thing can put ANYONE to sleep!

Yadda x 3

Seems this elderly couple in St. Louis bagged the $240 some-odd-million Powerball jackpot last weekend.  Is it just me, or don’t it seem like nine times out of ten, those big gi-normous jackpots are always won by these old people who probably won’t live long enough to enjoy the money, anyway?  Oh well, I do hope they enjoy the 30 bucks I contributed to their cause over the last couple weeks…

Does anyone know who the hell this guitar-hawking Esteban schlub is?  I consider myself to be fairly knowledgeable about music people, but I’ve never heard of the guy outside of these silly late-night infomercials where they puff him up to be the second coming of Eric Clapton.  Is the Big E really world famous, or are they bullshitting us?  By the way, if it takes someone half an hour to convince me to buy something, they’re shit outta luck, anyway…

"At The Hop"—DANNY & THE JUNIORS (1957) "When the record stops spinnin’, you Calypso when you chicken at the hop…" sounded to me like "you can listen with your chicken."  Neither lyric makes a whole lotta sense!

Some ESPN guy on the radio the other morning said that Shaquille O’Neal sat out the previous night’s Miami Heat game with a "calf issue".  I just have to ask:  Did he have a cow, man?  (Place rim shot here!)

I awoke to single-digit wind chills here this morning when I went out to start my car.  Therefore, Al Gore and his believers can all go get stuffed!  It’s colder than a well digger’s butt—and now we have a little snow too, so we can conduct the Iditarod right here in K.C.

…what the hell we need TVs for in fast food dining areas?  I mean, come on—is the collective attention span in this country THAT short now?  I understand having TVs in bars, airports, doctor's waiting roomsanywhere you'll be for an extended time—but at McDonald’s?!?  And worse yet, why do they waste a perfectly good 52" plasma TV there?  That’s like putting chrome hub caps on a riding lawn mower.  Any why is said TV seemingly always tuned to Fox News Channel?  What a waste of technology…

Great Moments In Radio--Volume III

One night while I was on the air in on K-JO, I got a call from the St. Joseph police department with a dedication request.  Some sergeant was having a birthday, and they asked if I could play "Alley-Oop" by the Hollywood Argyles and say something to the effect of "he’s about as old as the caveman in the song".  I was happy to oblige, so I said, "This next song goes out to one of St. Joe’s Finest celebrating a birthday tonight," etc.

Flash ahead a couple weeks later, when some scalawag broke into my car and stole my radar detector—a fairly valuable item in 1988just before I headed to work.  I got to work and called the police to report the theft and one of them stopped by the radio station to take down my info.  The cop asks me, "You don’t happen to be the guy who played "Alley-Oop" the other night, are you?"  "Yep, that was me!" I proclaimed proudly.  "Ohhhh my—just wait until the Sarge hears about this!" he replied.  Needless to say, little or no effort was made in tracking down the miscreant who stole my radar detector…

Monday, January 29, 2007

Shark Jumping 102

Another installment, this time featuring the ONLY "reality" show that's ever been worth watching, "COPS", or as I affectionately call it (in my best Alistair Cooke voice), "White Trash Theater"...

Definitely the “uncut” COPS video (not seen on TV), where basically every case involves a naked 65-year-old poor lady…

—There’s nothing funnier than seeing a shirtless, toothless, multi-tattooed bumpkin getting rolled by the cops!!!

—It never jumped…Watching some Gomer run from the coppers and then get the beatdown he so richly deserves will NEVER go out of style.

—Watching cops beat up drunk, naked hillbillies that deserve a beating will NEVER get boring!  I’m a SCREAMING lefty and I LOVE this show!  And yes, MOST of the losers on this show are White Trash.

—Do you ever notice that when every criminal is arrested, they all wear no shirt and sweatpants, and one sock on.  And that is so true about how nobody in the house is ever surprised to see police or a camera crew.

—You always see the same scenario in those house they bust into: Drunk guy, no shirt, Dolphin shorts, one sock, one flip-flop, cigarette, TV on, baby crying, etc., etc…

—Will never JTS as long as me and my buddies play The Cops Drinking Game.  See a guy without a shirt?  Take one shot of Vodka;  See a 90-pound crackhead tackled by a 200-pound cop?  Take two shots;  Spot a mullet?  Take three shots;  Old redneck lady with feathered hair and no bra who refuses to remove the cigarette from her mouth while telling the cops to “kiss her ass”?  Take four shots.  The fun never ends.

—You have to love it when they are arresting a loser still in his Orange Julius uniform who got beat up by his female neighbor.

—This is absolutely one of the greatest shows ever produced—despite the fact that there are essentially only four episodes.  All episodes start with the “de rigeur” scene where the cop is telling the camera how he grew up in the area and is now “making a difference” and/or “doing some good.”  1) Cops show up at trailer park in Florida, go to door where morbidly obese White-Trash skank with busted lip and home perm greets them.  Cops are conducted into trailer abode, where White-Trash dude (who is either grossly overweight or underweight), wearing tank top sits morosely in front of TV with beer in hand.  Dude acts as if there is nothing whatsoever going on despite presence of police with camera crew in his trailer.  2) Also in Florida, also at a trailer park, but this time the trailer serves as a METH LAB.  Same characters as above, but absent the busted lip on the fat chick.  3) Traffic stop in which idiot passengers in 1980 Olds Cutlass have a brick of weed the size of a cinder block in plain view on the floor.  As other posters have noted, this often occurs in Albuquerque.  Watch the hilarity ensue as idiots all disclaim knowledge/ownership of said weed.  It is as if the weed miraculously appeared between their feet by some sort of “underclass” version of the Immaculate Conception.  4) Same car, same idiots, but this time they RUN from the cops and attempt to throw the cinder block of weed out of the window one gram at a time.  Uh, wait, that’s really only TWO episodes with subtle variations.  But I guess I should also have included my all-time favorite—the PROSTITUTION STING!  Nothing better than some toothless 70-year-old homeless dude coming up to the female undercover and asking for a “date”.  Hell yeah, what a great show.  Back in college, my buddies and I would watch COPS every Saturday night while getting hammered and ready to go out.  Good to see that the show still is going strong!

Shark Jumping 101

One of my favorite web sites out there is, which chronicles the point at which TV shows went over the edge and declined.  It's really turned more into a "critique-fest", for the most part, but some of the stuff people submit is pretty damn funny.  Unfortunately, one must sift through a lot of mindless crappola to get to the good stuff, so I'll save you the trouble here by periodcally posting a "Best of jumptheshark" compilation.  We begin today with the very show that inspired the website in the first place, "Happy Days".  Here's a sampling of what folks think about the show:

—When Potsie told the executive producer of the show that he had a picture of him with a farm animal and would show it to the world unless he was allowed to sing in almost every episode toward the end of the run.  It made me want to crawl under the couch.  The horror…the horror…

—What’s so great about Fonzie anyway?  He’s short, dropped out of high school, works in a garage, lives above a garage and hangs out with kids five years younger than him.  He apparently never gets beyond first base with girls, he wears the same thing every day and his office is in a bathroom.

—The gang forms a band and does absolutely horrible job faking their instruments.

—When Potsie turned from being a cool young kid trying to get women into some kind of gay showtune singer.

—Whenever Potsie would sing like the whitest man on earth…

—Fonzie’s office in the bathroom…if I walked into a men’s room and found a guy sitting behind a desk, I’d call the police and then go outside and pee behind a tree.

—One episode that I especially hated was when Potsie was in college and to pass a test on anatomy he proceeds to sing a song and prance around the classroom like an idiot while the teacher looks dumbfounded and everyone else is clapping and smiling like they are on a bad acid trip.

—Didn’t Scott Baio ever feel like saying, “Hey, I sorta look like a douche bag with these bandanas tied around my legs, and I don’t think they’re periodically accurate, either.”  Who knows, maybe he really WAS a douche bag, and the bandanas were his idea.

—Potsie couldn’t carry a tune with a handle.

—When Chachi became a basketball star…Think about it, 5’4” white guy on a 10-foot gym with bleachers that went three deep.  I’m supposed to believe this moron was the next Bob Cousy.

—I couldn’t deal with Chachi as an ever-growing presence (like a fungus).  And what the hell is this “wah-wah-wah” crap?  Is that supposed to be an infant or what?

Chachi: Scrappy-Doo to the Fonz’s Scooby…

—Anson Williams’ name as a contributing “recording artist” along with those of Chuck Berry and Bill Haley in the show’s closing credits is a great illustration of the word “chutzpah”!  Anson Williams has to rank up there with William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy as one of the truly “great” recording vocalists of American television.

—Potsie with a DIGITAL WATCH! (yup).

—Asking when “Happy Days” jumped the shark is like asking who’s in Grant’s Tomb.

—I also wonder why after a couple seasons everybody in Milwaukee was Italian…I used to live in Wisconsin.  The place is chock-full of Germans and Scandinavians, but trust me, there aren’t that many Italians there.

—When Richie began sporting a Dick Van Patten comb-over.  THAT did it for me.