Friday, June 17, 2005

Happy I Left the Womb Day

Around 6:30 this morning there was a series of pounding thuds at my front door.

Since I was still asleep, my mind grabbed these sounds and proceeded to turn them into the fists of Winona Ryder, begging to be let back into my comforting arms. She was wearing a black spaghetti strap dress and looking rather neckish. I was about to let her in when I realized she sounded like a New Jersey cabbie.

I jumped a few inches in my bed when I realized the pounding was drowning my birthday in impending doom.

I threw on a t-shirt that was conveniently located on the floor from the night before and hobbled to my front door.

I glanced through the peep hole first, which I don't know why I do since those things never work. I usually imagine they're for the thought police to peer in and see when I'm doing something illegal, like dreaming about a scantily clad Winona Ryder.

All I could see was a bright color of yellow.

I opened the door and probably would have been startled if I wasn't rubbing eye boogers from my face.

Standing there, and looking none too pleased, were the numbers "3" and "5".

Add them together and they form the number of times I've winced at the sight of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes canoodling together on Entertainment Tonight.

Separately, they create my none too pleasing new age.

Sigh.

They were both eight feet tall with Muppet like yellow hair. The "3" was grinning and hopping up and down, really excited to be in my presence. The "5" on the other hand, was grimacing and rolling his eyes at the sight of his forced upon partner.

"Excuse me," asked "3". "Would you be Stacy Without an E?"

Still not conscious and continually flashing back to Winona's naked nape, I mumbled what was either an expletive or a "yes."

"3" handed the papers he was holding and shoved them into the rather cartoonish hands of his numerical cohort.

They barrelled in as "3" performed an Ashlee Simpson type jig. "5" continued to examine the paperwork, seeming unsure as to whether he wanted to be in my humble abode.

"Excuse me again Mr. Without an E, but where would your closet be?"

I slumped down on the couch and began to tilt over from fatigue. I yawned that my closet is probably somewhere in the bedroom.

"3" began to grin from ear to ear. "5" began pounding his fist into his free hand.

And then things turned really ugly.

They both scurried into my bedroom and created quite a commotion. A struggle began to ensue. Then yelling. Breaking glass. Even louder yelling.

I began to rise to discover whether or not I would be losing my security deposit when what appeared to be a giant "4" ran past me screaming. He was pale, weak and limping as he ran. Behind him followed his equally fragile cohort, another "3", only shorter.

They both stopped before me and put out their hands, believably to shake mine.

The dilapitated "4" spoke first with a very proper accent.

"A pleasure these past 365 days."

"3" stepped forward and offered his hand as I finished shaking "4's".

"That whole dialysis thing really shook us up, but you managed and survived. If I had a hat sir, it would be off to you."

I finished shaking his hand and they both did a quick, syncronized dance.

And then they were gone.

The newly minted "3" came out wearing a pair of my favorite boxers, stretching them out due to his size. "4" followed reading one of my new Playboy's, the one with Bai Ling on the cover.

"So," asked "3" as he devoured the remainder of my Cheetos, "this is your life, huh?"

The addition of these two digits wasn't multiplying my enjoyment of my birthday. I began to summize that they would need to be divided fractionally if I were to survive the remainder of my day.

I quickly sprung to action. With all my strength, I pushed "3" as hard as I could into "4". I rammed them both into the nearest wall and pushed with all my might.

I used every ounce of hate I have for dialysis, rock radio and "The World According to Jim" to push both numbers together.

They began to shudder at first, but then their forms began to melt. Their bodies became extremely hot as I continued to push harder and harder.

"My......age......will......not......define......me!!"

They struggled and squirmed, but finally, their fight was all but gone.

Standing before me, motionless, was a giant number "8".

I pushed the "8" to the floor and it landed with a resounding thud. I grabbed my hacksaw and cut both ovals into smaller circles. I grabbed both together and hoisted them over my shoulder.

I proceeded to my apartment complex pool and flung them in. The kids love them. One of them saved an elderly women who couldn't handle the deep end.

I spent the remainder of the day content in the fact that I had defeated the albatross of age that had been looming over me for the past few weeks.

Stamina and vitality have been traded for fatigue and wisdom. Enthusiasm transformed into cynicism. Life seems less complicated. Truth is an occasional gift.

And I'm not 35. I'm 29 for the seventh time.

Don't forget that.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Larry King is a Poorly Built Android

These past two weeks, an alarming trend has come to my attention.

Larry King's career is being celebrated because he hasn't keeled over yet.

How sad is that?

One very disturbing episode was rebroadcast from shortly after Arnold Schwarzenegger took the office of governorship here in Cal-ee-forn-yuh.

After the nauseatingly self-congratulatory graphics for Larry the Poorly Built Android were finished, Larry yanked one of his suspenders and turned on his poorly coded interview program.

Larry: Governor Schwarzenegger, how is life in public office?

It was no surprise that Larry, having arrived moments before the episode began, and without any preparation, didn't realize that Governor Schwarzenegger had not yet arrived.

The studio began to buckle as the lights flickered to dim. Lightning bolts began to crackle all around as a spherical object began to make its way into the studio.

Larry: Birmingham, you're on the air!

Someone tried to whisper to Larry off camera that they weren't taking calls yet, but Larry glared into the camera smiling. The weight of his ever voluminous head almost toppled his frail, android body.

The studio lights began to flicker back to normal as Governor Arnold appeared in the chair across from Larry.

That would have been fine, but due to the recent time travel Arnold had to endure, he was naked.

Larry: Arnold, you look tremendous.

Arnold: I am the T-800, sent back in time to eliminate your awful interviewing skills from the television landscape and save America from you mindless, endless dribble.

Larry: Beautiful, you're amazing Arnold. So how is the future?

Arnold: I have ascended to the presidency. All citizens, save for the top 1% of income earners, are in internment camps awaiting expulsion from society. We must rid ourselves of those who seek to bring down our society.

Larry: Norfolk, Virginia, you're on the air!

Arnold: In the year 2015, I passed through what was left of Congress my "Perfect Plan." Instead of race, creed or color, bias is chosen on the basis of income and personal worth.

Larry: I'm one of the richest broadcasters in history. Where am I in 2015?

Arnold: In 2009, your creator, Ted Turner, decided to clone you, thus bringing down android technology for the remainder of the century. Your existence, if not ceased here and now, will ruin future androids for generations to come.

Larry: Fabulous! Wichita, you're on with Governor T-800 Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Wichita: Yes, Larry, do you paint your bald spot?

Larry: Paint my bald spot?

T-800 Arnold begins to uncontrollably snicker as this line of questioning continues.

Wichita: Yes Larry. I've gone back through years of tape and your bald spot grows and then recedes as time goes on. You paint your bald spot, don't you?

Larry: Paint my bald spot?

Arnold: I'll take this Larry. Larry King was created by Ted Turner in the early 80's to prove, a) that it could be done and b) that it takes very simple, very basic programming, to make Larry King the Poorly Built Android possible.

Wichita: That would explain his lack of talent, but tell me Arnold, what about his wife Shawn King and that fabricated story about how they fell in love. How can anyone love a creature with a noggin like Larry's?

Larry: Paint my bald spot?

Arnold: Caller, if it isn't obvious already, Shawn is also an android. Haven't you hear her sing? It's mechanical and lacking any humanity.

Larry: Paint my bald spot?

Arnold: Thank you caller. Larry seems to be stuck in a question lock.

With that, Governor Arnold reaches behind his back and pulls out a shotgun. He aims directly for Larry's left suspender and fires.

Larry: Roswell, New Mexico you're on with...

Larry continues his mindless drivel, so Arnold aims for his right suspender and fires again.

Larry: You won't find a finer pair of actresses than Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen.

Arnold: Oh no! He's switched to USA Today columnist mode. The mindless dribble ends here!

Arnold cocks the shotgun once again, but pauses for a moment.

Arnold: Larry, would you mind looking behind you.

Larry: Arnold, you're fabulous! Sure.

As Larry turns his massive noggin to the back of the studio, Arnold aims for his poorly covered bald spot.

Larry: Nacho cheese is probably the finest American food ever created.

Arnold: No more!

Arnold fires straight into the heart of Larry the Poorly Built Android's programming at the base of his bald spot. A huge hole emerges from the opposite side, taking out most of Larry's face.

Larry: Next week, Tammy Faye...T...T...T...TamTamTamTam...TAM...EEE...T...A...M...M...

Larry's head attempts to right itself one last time before it's massive weight tilts to one side and takes his frail body with it.

When Larry's head reaches the floor, it breaks into hundreds of pieces.

Ryan: NOOOOOOOOOOO!

From out of nowhere come the next generation of poorly built, mindless androids, Ryan Seacrest and Billy Bush.

Ryan: What have you done Arnold? He was my hero.

Billy Bush glances eagerly at Ryan and repeats exactly what he says.

Alarms can be heard going off inside Arnold's head.

Arnold: Warning! Warning! Self-destruct mode has been activated from the source!

Ryan: How long do we have?

Billy: Ugh, yeah. How long do, um, where's my teleprompter?

Arnold: Society must be saved from your poorly built kind. I'll see you in hell.

One final tick clicks by as Arnold's head explodes, taking out Larry's studio, as well as most of the CNN Center in Atlanta.

Larry King. Ryan Seacrest. Billy Bush. All poorly built androids created by media giants to control the world of entertainment.

Thankfully, they are no more.

On the streets below, Americans applaud and cheer the demise of three of the most reviled figures of contemporary media. A young girl isn't really sure what all the fuss is about, but she is cheering with her family.

As she continues to follow her family's cue, a small marble looking object bumps into her foot.

She reaches down to pick it up. It looks to have an eye painted on it.

Little Girl: Look Mommy, it's a marble.

Her mother is too busy celebrating to realize what her young daughter has found.

It's Larry King's eye. And it's still blinking.

The End?