Saturday, December 4, 2010

"Reelin' In The Years" - Vol. 5

More golden oldies from my original journals in the early '90s...

Mon. June 8, 1992:  “Responding to accusations of financial and religious improprieties, officials of the Christian Science Church provided members with the most detailed financial report in church history.  The report said that since 1986, the church had exhausted $135 million of its unrestricted reserve fund and borrowed $115 million from its pension fund to finance new ventures in radio, TV and magazine publishing.”
Shades of the United Way?  And just as with big charities, the bigger the church, the less I trust it.

Tue. June 9, 1992:  “Dan Quayle’s been shooting his mouth off again, and once again displayed his total ignorance in the process.  He divided the nation into ‘the cultural elite and the rest of us’, and broadened his attack on the moral values of “Murphy Brown” to encompass a wide swath of American life, including universities, Hollywood, and the news media.  Quoting Chairman Quayle:  ‘As I discovered recently, to appeal to our country’s enduring basic moral values is to invite the scorn and laughter of the elite culture.  Talk about right and wrong and they’ll try to mock us in newsrooms, sitcom studios and faculty lounges across America…That’s why I say this about the scorn of the media elite:  I wear their scorn as a badge of honor.'"
Does this not sound like the same mantra that Sarah Palin chants today?  “The nasty old news media was/is being mean to me!!”  Ain’t nothing worse than a beleaguered politician who constantly plays the “Why’s everybody always pickin’ on me?” card.  Suck it up and deal with the media—you’re politicians and it’s part of the game.  Quayle single-handedly ended any chance of Bush the First to be re-elected in ’92 with his ignorant comments, just as Palin pretty much lost the election for McCain in ’08.

While I'm on Ms. Winky-Dink, I read somewhere recently where she steadfastly refuses to be interviewed by mean old Katie Couric again.  Now, tell me please, if Sarah Palin is elected President, how the fuck is this woman going to stand up to our enemies in the Middle East, North Korea, et al, when she's afraid of a lightweight twit like Couric?!?

Sat. June 27, 1992:  “In a development I’m real pleased to see, Dan O’Brien won’t be going to Barcelona (for the Olympics).  Dave Johnson won the U.S. track and field trield in New Orleans and earned a berth in Barcelona, but O’Brien failed miserably in the pole vault (he completely chickened out on one run), and failed to make the team.  Dan and Dave have been the focal point of this silly Reebok ad campaign all year long, 'Who’s The Worlds Greatest Athlete? be settled in Barcelona', and now it’s all academic.”
Don’t you just love it when an ad campaign by a major corporation blows up in their collective faces?  They kept hyping the hell out of these two schlubs (who no one knew in the first place) for months and it got to the point where it felt like we were being force-fed the whole thing, just like when we were told that Alan Thicke would supplant Johnny Carson as the "King Of Late-Nite" back in the '80s.  Riiiight....

Sat. June 27, 1992:  “Apparently Hank Williams, Jr. had too many tears in his beer at Sandstone (Amphitheater) tonight, and staggered off the stage after only fifteen minutes.  He was so drunk he didn’t even sing one song all the way through.  He also saluted the crowd with half a peace sign, and said things like, “Fuck you, Kansas City,” “Fuck Garth Brooks,” etc.  Not surprisingly, the idiots who paid $30 to see Bocephus were not too pleased, and booed him off the stage.  Sandstone officials weren’t happy either, and said Williams won’t be paid for his “performance”.  Patrons will probably get refunds.  Meanwhile, (radio station) KFKF, who sponsored the show, imposed a moratorium on Hank Jr. music on their station until further notice, saying that ‘this is not what Country music is all about.’  Funny how often this happens in Country music and nobody says anything about it, yet when it happens at a Rock show, it’s front-page news.”
Hank’s lapse in judgment indirectly resulted in the death of a deranged fan in Belton, MO about a week later.  Things had been going badly for the guy as it was, evidently, and the aborted concert and subsequent ban on Hank Jr. music on the radio put him over the edge and he threatened suicide.  Cops were called to his home at 3:30 in the morning and when he threatened to shoot them, they were forced to fire on him.  The man had also talked of hunting dinosaurs and owning a fighter jet, so he was a couple fries shy of a Happy Meal anyway.

Mon. July 6, 1992:  “National leaders for the deaf community are angry that a hearing actor plays a deaf man in a new film directed by Penny Marshall called Calendar Girl.  ‘Hiring hearing people for such roles is akin to white actors in blackface,’ says Linda Bove, a deaf actress who has appeared on “Sesame Street” for 17 years.  Leaders of the National Association of The Deaf and the Deaf Coalition say they may boycott and picket the movie when it comes out.”
Uhhh, folks, that’s why it’s called ACTING!!!  No one fussed when Laura Dern played a blind girl in Mask.  Tom Hanks and Sean Penn ain’t gay, but they played homosexuals in Oscar-nominated films.  As far as I know, Anthony Hopkins has never killed anyone—should the role of Hannibal Lechter have gone to O.J. Simpson instead?  Roger Daltrey is neither deaf, dumb, nor blind, buuuut—well, you get the idea.  This is why I bristle so much at these grandstander coalitions and special interest groups who make these big stinks over nothing just to get their names in the paper.  They do more to damn their cause than to promote it.  You really wanna impress me?  Have a deaf actor play someone who can hear clearly!

Sat., July 18, 1992:  “Roger Clemens got pissed at a Boston newspaper reporter during a post-game interview after his victory over Minnesota, and threw hamburger buns at him.  It seems that George Kimball of the Boston Herald used his column to blame Clemens for the death of a kid who had Down Syndrome.  The kid’s grandmother had asked Clemens for an autographed baseball, but he allegedly refused her.  I don’t quite follow how this could’ve caused the kid’s death, but Clemens repeatedly called Kimball a “lowlife” and then assaulted him with hamburger buns.”
Far be it for me to defend a dickhead like Clemens, but I side with him on this one.  But hamburger buns, Roger?!?  This man threw 100-mph fastballs and his weapon of choice for retaliation was hamburger buns?!?  Guess his steroid needles weren't handy at the time.  I would’ve at least gone with bagels or English muffins instead…

Wed. July 22, 1992:  In reviewing my first-ever Kiss tribute band show of the group Kiss’d:  “’Paul’ was too much of a hot dog and his between-song patter was nothing short of embarrassing.  ‘Ace’ was the funniest-looking—he was short and kinda fat, and shaped like Barney Rubble.  ‘Gene’ actually did the fire-breathing (twice) and the blood-spitting, although he wiped it off right away.  ‘Peter’ was the best instrumentalist, and also looked the most like his character.  The show was marred with numerous equipment problems, lyric fuck-ups and too much smoke.  By show’s end, they place resembled the inside of Cheech & Chong’s Volkswagen."
Kiss tribute band shows can be a crapshoot—sometimes they play really well but the costumes/make-up look like crap, or sometimes they look good, but sound like shit or their pyro and special effects suck.  Still, it’s become a fun cottage industry that will no doubt outlive the original band, and when you get a good Kiss tribute band like Strutter or Destroyer, it’s like seeing the Real McCoy in its prime.  What I’d love to see is someone do a Kiss tribute band from the non-make-up era—now THAT would be a challenge to get the look exactly right!

Thu. July 23, 1992:  “[KCTV-5 news anchor] Anne Peterson invented a new word on the news tonight:  'acquitment'.  That’s acquittal, you airhead!”
My friend Tom always called Anne Peterson “The Rock” because according to him, if you held up a rock and a picture of her and compared the two, there was no difference.  AP was cute and perky in a Katie Couric kinda way, but not terribly qualified to be a news anchor.  Still, somehow, she managed to stick around for 20 years on Channel 5, teaming up with the late Wendell Anschutz as the longest-running news anchor duo in TV history.

Sat. July 25, 1992:  “Speaking of Boatmen’s [my former employer], an airplane flew over the stadium [Busch in St. Louis] with one of those streamers that read:  ‘BOATMEN’S—HOW YOU’DE RUN A BANK’."
Ah, yes, proofreading, the lost art…

Sun. July 26, 1992:  “When we returned to Denny’s for breakfast, we got there a little before Noon, and they were pretty busy, but not unusually so.  The people next to us ordered AFTER we did, got their food, ate it, paid for it and left BEFORE we ever got ours.  How fucking long does it take to cook two grand slam breakfasts and an omelet?”  Classic case of the poor service we encountered at Denny’s, but for some reason, we kept going back for more.  During our many drinking binges in St. Louis, my friends and I often de-toxed at the Denny’s in the suburb of Bridgeton near our hotel, or as we referred to it, “Home of the Butt-Ugly Waitress”.  It never failed—we were always waited on by some White Trash gal who looked like Mick Jagger in drag, and once I actually had to explain the complicated Denny’s breakfast menu to this gal who didn’t understand the difference between the Top Sirloin & Eggs and a New York Steak & Eggs.  That particular Denny’s closed down several years ago, but many of the Butt-Uglies no doubt work at the Waffle House that opened just up the street.

Tue. August 4, 1992:  “The Adam Rich Saga continues—once again, our man Adam was sentenced to three years’ probation and ordered to go back into drug rehabilitation.  L.A. Deputy District Attorney Teri Hutchinson reacted to the ruling by saying, 'What a joke.  This is the fourth time he’s been sentenced to a program.  I thought "Eight Is Enough" was talking about the TV program he was on, not how many treatment programs.'”
Ol’ Adam spent the better part of 1991-92 in and out of jail for stealing drugs and drug paraphernalia and just plain being a first class fool.  I’m a little surprised he’s not milking this for all it’s worth on “Celebrity Rehab” today.

Fri. August 7, 1992:  [Regarding my first—and last—high school reunion] “Ozzy’s ‘Road To Nowhere’ was playing on the radio on the way over, and it was most appropriate because '…the wreckage of my past keeps haunting me…'”
It had never really hit me until that night what a total waste my high school years were for me, socially.  It dawned on me that I really had no close female friends back then, and that’s a tragedy, because it took me years to finally realize that I was just as worthy of friendships and romantic relationships with women as any other guy, but in high school, I was a virtual shut-in in that regard.  I was never encouraged to socialize and chase girls during my adolescence, let alone just have one or two as friends, and this reunion was a painful reminder of what I missed out on if I had only opened up a little more, and in a lot of ways, I’m still paying for it today.  High school is supposed to be “the time of our lives”, but I fucking hated it, and vowed “Never again” when it comes to future reunions.

Sat. September 5, 1992:  “Went and saw Single White Female tonight—pretty good flick.  Interesting moment happened during a scene in which Jennifer Jason-Leigh’s character is shown masturbating in bed.  She no sooner had started bumping and grinding when the power went out because of the wicked thunderstorm outdoors.”
Not making this up, folks—it really happened!  Timing is everything…

Mon. September 7, 1992:  “Big story of the day:  Baseball commissioner Fay Vincent resigned his post today, citing that he wanted to avoid a big legal battle (over realignment, et al) after the owners had been ganging up on him.  This is pretty fucked-up because although I disagree with some of the things he did, I think he did a great job, overall.  No replacement is on deck as yet.  Mark my words, the owners are going to run the game into the ground after this.”
And they damn near did, thanks to the work stoppage two years later.  I thought Commissioner Fay did a pretty decent job, overall—he was light years better than Bud Selig.  Just as an aside, every time I hear Fay Vincent’s name, I remember David Letterman’s “Top 10 New NBA Slogans” list, and one of them was “At least we don’t have a Commissioner named Fay!”  Another on that list was “Come see our Johnsons!”

Tue. September 8, 1992:  “No less than 20 present and former Cincinnati Bengals have been fingered in a lawsuit for raping or imprisoning a woman know as Victoria C.  The alleged rape too place October 9, 1990.  Among the players names in the suit are Ickey Woods, Lewis Billups, Rickey Dixon, Rodney Holman, David Fulcher, Eddie Brown and Solomon Wilcots.”
I don’t think anything ever came of this lawsuit, but it’s funny how some things never change—the Bungholes spent just as much time on the police blotter back then as they do now.

Tue. September 9, 1992:  “Brewers owner Bud Selig has been named temporary chief of Major League Baseball until some sucker takes over for good.”
Unfortunately, no one ever did, and we’ve been stuck with Howdy-Doody running MLB ever since...

Wed. September 16, 1992:  [During my first-ever East Coast road trip] “I hopped off at Lincoln Memorial and immediately encountered a large group of cute little Hispanic babes in these colorful costume-like outfits with very short skirts.  This, coupled with the sharp angle of the stairs leading up to Abe, provided me with some most excellent tush photo opportunities!  Even ol’ Abe himself was smiling…
Yes, me and Abe were eyeing little girls with bad intent…

Wed. September 30, 1992:  [The night George Brett of the Royals got his 3,000th hit in Anaheim]  “Where was I when all this happened?  Sitting right here at this computer while watching a boring movie on Showtime, totally unaware of what happened.”
I inadvertently missed this little hunk of history as it took place and didn’t learn of George’s feat until the next morning on the radio and I was like “He fucking did what?!?”  He’d been injured and hadn’t played the previous two nights, and he was sitting at 2,996 hits going into that game, and I figured he either wouldn’t play at all or would only pinch-hit—I never dreamed the bugger would go 4-for-4, thus I didn’t tune the game in on TV.  D’oh!

Sat. October 3, 1992:  “Sinead O’Connor decided it was time to stir up some more trouble.  In one of the more majestic pieces of bad taste in recent years, Sinead appeared on “Saturday Night Live” singing one of her new songs, and concluded by methodically shredding an 8 x 12 photo of Pope John Paul II and shouting, “Fight the real enemy.”  I’ve been a staunch defender of Sinead up ‘til now, but I have to call her out on this one.  What point could she possibly have been trying to make by pulling such a stupid stunt?  Come on, Sinead, lighten up.”

Talk about a colossal career-killing maneuver, this was even more lethal than Billy Squier outing himself by prancing around like Richard Simmons in the “Rock Me Tonite” video.  You know, I really wanted to like Sinead—this woman made the shaved head a cool female fashion statement (instead of a punchline like Britney Spears in ’07), she has stunning blue eyes and a beautiful voice, and is a fairly talented individual—but she’s as flaky as a Pillsbury pie crust (keep reading).  She’s also way too dead-dog serious about everything.  Given my stance on religion and all, it’s unusual for me to defend the Catholic Church, but I thought what O’Connor did was wrong.  While I think religion is pretty much all bullshit, I at least try to be respectful in regards to religious figures—except for TV evangelists, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and Fred Phelps, of course.

Wed. October 14, 1992:  “Sinead O’Connor is featured in the current issue of Rolling Stone in an interview in which she thinks:
Everybody should smoke pot.
—“There’s absolutely no point” in voting.
—The L.A. riots were “great” because “people had some expression at last.”
—Mike Tyson is a victim, even if he did rape Desiree Washington, who shouldn’t have filed charges.
—What she really is fighting is child abuse.  Apparently she blames the Catholic Church for abuse she suffered from her parents.
—Organized religion is a lie.

Sinead, sweetie, I really AM trying to understand, but quite frankly, you sound like a blithering idiot.  Lighten up before you alienate every fucking fan you have.”
I do agree with the last two points she made in the interview, so why is O’Connor an ordained minister now?  And yeah, some of those poor folks in Watts got to express themselves during the riots, but 53 of them didn't—because they FUCKING DIED!  It’s pretty obvious that Sinead was/is in the same league with that deranged Hank, Jr. fan I mentioned above.