please stop tickling me

In which we laugh and laugh and laugh. And love. And drink.

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Location: Portland, Oregon

Otium cum Dignitatae

Thursday, November 03, 2005

An Update (or Uptick)

Around here at Bachelor Pad One, we pride ourselves on our tremendous tech-savvy. That's why when, 'bout two days ago, The Demon Sa'kul's computer stopped working, we responded with heavy sighs and a whole bunch of shoulder shrugging.
But it's back up again, so here we go. Ah-I've had a request for dream updates from Cats Dig Me. Here goes.
-My spirit guide in dreams has long been a large black man, occasionally wearing a turban, sometimes in drag (see Jairus, from the archives). Well, recently there has appeared another one. In this particular scenario, I am cooking in a fine restaurant up Oneonta Gorge, right past Horsetail Falls (which is federally protected land, and will never have a resort on it). I like the food I'm making, and the people I work with are pretty damn cool. At some point, I'm joined by an older Italian man.
Perhaps a 'silent partner' of the restaurant, he strikes me as clearly being mobbed-up. He takes me for a walk in the garden, imparts some friendly advice, which I don't remember any of. Interesting stuff.
Last night I fell asleep pondering something: there's been a few too many characters in classic Western movies with the last name 'Valance'. It's an odd name; I've never met anyone who sports it, but there it is in "Red River" ('Cherry Valance'), and of course "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance".
I started thinking of a side plot for the increasingly surreal soap opera parody I'm to be acting in/working on. I was thinking that (like actual soaps do) we could, for no really good reason, inject a shootout sequence into the story, taking place on location elsewhere. The episode would be named 'The man who shot White Valance'.
See, since one of the first things you do with a teevee camera is point it at a white piece of paper or cloth, and set the 'white balance' (because once you've got white down, the rest of the colors will be proper, as well), I figger, well, lets assume that the only audience for this show will be other tech-geeks.
White Valance will be the name of an evil man in a small town, modelled roughly on Biggs, Oregon. Biggs is a spot along the Interstate 84 where until recently, there was one side of town where every business bore the name of 'Jack' (Jack's Fine Food, Jack's Truck Stop, etc.), and the other side bore the name of 'Dinty'. Well, I always thought there should be a shootout, but as always, the marketplace ruled otherwise.
Not only does the side of town historically given to Dinty currently sport a restaurant owned by 'Linda', but Jack's side of town has been eviscerated by a large truck stop owned by Shell that has a McDonald's in it...The mini mart is owned by some heartless conglomerate, I'm pretty sure that the motel went along with this awful trend...Even the giant 'EAT' sign I used to demand my friends have their picture taken under, every time we passed it, is gone. Sigh.
The local newspaper has gone up at the newsstand from thirty-five to fifty cents. This is fine: I believe any other major city in the country's daily would cost at least that, but I'm still waiting for there to be a conversant fifteen cents worth of uptick in quality of reportage. Hasn't happened, just yet.
And the editorial page remains the same depressing cluster of bad syndicated journalists (why hasn't someone told Kathleen Parker to go home yet?), and our two managing editors, both named 'Dave', one of which calls himself a Conservative but is really a Reactionary, the other who is described as a Liberal, but is really a Moderate. Such is the state of public discourse.
In the first episode of the soap opera, the wealthy garbage fly Rich Bachelor is breaking up with his girlfriend, Caffeine. I intend to say her name really fast, so you can't tell if that's really what her name is. Caffeine is marked by her propensity for saying weird, random, embarrassing things, then shouting, "I ALWAYS SAY THE WRONG THING!", and laughing maniacally. In this first scene, Senor Bachelor says the tag line that many of the characters use:"End it!"
In our research for the scripts, Bobby Massage and I watched a lot of soaps, asking always, 'why doesn't this work? Why is this so embarrassing?', aside from the bad acting and poor lighting, crap set design...We'll incorporate those elements, too, but a lot of it is the cliched nature of the lines.
You know? Very rarely (unless they've watched too much teevee and movies) do you hear actual people making the whole "I've been here, being a good/strong/noble person all these years, and watched all these lesser/weak/ugly people Get Theirs, and I'm sick of it! It's MY turn!" speech, in real life. Here, we've turned that sort of thing on its ear. Also, the propensity of the characters to speak in Plot Updates: "Well, you'd better just remember what happened to Carrie in Las Vegas two years ago, when she found out that she really wasn't the doctor's daughter at all, but a semi-intelligent variety of sea slug..."
Other elements include the clumsy use of black slang by white characters, people who don't look even remotely similar being passed off as family members, people who are clearly in their twenties being passed off as teenagers, the fact that there's one family in town from whom all evil springs, but no one ever questions it...Oh, I could go on.
Oh yes: last night, after that whole 'White Valance' thing, I fell asleep, and dreamed that I was writing a book about dreams. It happened in a city that was equal parts my home town, and the town where I went to college. I kept on dreaming within the dream, and waking up, trying to record the dream imagery.
At least one was some sort of virus/plague of bugs thing that was running up the Statue of Liberty. On one hand, it seemed to be indicative of bad things a-comin', but on the other hand, maybe that wasn't a plague of bugs at all. Maybe it was people, racing forward to reclaim the virtue of Lady Liberty, and make us a functioning society again. I recall that both interpretations in the dream were equally plausible.
Coach Nate and The Lovely Nina, mentioned in the last post, had a baby about four days ago. A girl, named Sara. When I saw Nate last night, we talked about the difficulty of ceasing to refer to someone no longer in utero as 'it'. She's a 'she' now.
That's all I got. Gonna go get dinner with the lady. I continue to be in hot, sticky love.
Bachelor Out.



Blogger carrier said...

Yeah well out here well beyond the borders of the big city we now pay seventy five cents for that same rag.

Funny you should mention the name Valance, you see I have a family of them living on my route. At least for now. They are the kind that wanders from place to place, often moving in the middle of the night. Of course they never inform the postal service of their intentions to move. They simply disappear one day. And then just as I'm about to return their accumulated mail they pop up again somewhere else. Kind of like gypsies I suppose.

8:01 PM  
Blogger rich bachelor said...

Exactly like Gypsies, I propose.

8:28 PM  
Blogger Jacq said...

Gypsies suck. At least the ones in every part of Italy. They carry around fake babies, i.e., babydolls, and do the pick pocket thing. When I saw one coming close to me once, I yelled at her "Vada via! Il vostro bambino non รจ reale!" which basically means to go away because her "baby" isn't real. Shocked she was that I could speak enough Italian to tell her to go penetrate herself.

Of course the gypsies I always have an inflated view about are the hippies of the 60s. But they weren't really much better. Just in my wharped sense of fantasy maybe.

5:27 AM  
Blogger rich bachelor said...

Let's hear it for the lady that has a story for Everything.

8:28 AM  
Blogger Jacq said...

No applause, please. I thought YOU were supposed to be the raconteur here.

11:49 AM  
Blogger rich bachelor said...

I just don't right off hand have a Gypsy story. Then again, I've never been off this continent either, and the closest I've come to being around Gypsies is being around Carnies.
Or hippies on the festival circuit, I suppose.

12:43 PM  
Blogger Jacq said...

Carnies, that's too funny. I forgot about them.

1:14 PM  

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