Monday, January 18, 2010

We Interrupt This Blog, Part 2

If you've been following my blog for a while, you're probably aware of Zoe, who lives in New Zealand and writes the blog The Big Parade. This last weekend, Zoe was awarded the "prestigious" kreativ blogger award (the quotation marks are hers) in recognition of the creative and worthy work she has done as a blogger. If you read her work, you know she deserves it.

And then Zoe passed the award along to seven more bloggers, including me, your unworthy correspondent, the Mythical Monkey. This is my first award since the last time I got a check from a federal agency in recognition of my work as a lawyer—and I had to win a $19 million case to earn that one. All I had to do for this one was watch movies and write about them, something I'd be doing anyway. It's like stealing!

But as always, I can never leave anything alone without doing a little research first—not as an act of churlish cynicism but because curiosity is one of my defining characteristics. Here are a couple of things I think I've learned:

Originally, "kreativ blogger" was a quilt block designed by a Norwegian woman named Hulda, which because I have a personal connection to the quilting community, I find quite interesting. Somewhere along the way, though, somebody decided "kreativ blogger" would be a good name for an award, slapped some chain letter-like rules on it—like forwarding the award to seven more bloggers—and started sending it around the internet.

While drinking my coffee this morning, I did a little math, never one of my strong suits, and found that if every person receiving the kreativ blogger award passes the award along to seven more people who pass the award along to seven more (different) people, and on and on, etc., within twelve days every man, woman and child on the planet will have received the kreativ blogger award—which accounts for, what, half the blogs in existence?

Which is not in any way to suggest I didn't want to receive the kreativ blogger award. If I could have lobbied for it, I would have and I am genuinely touched that Zoe tagged me, especially since she knows me only through my writing and has no personal obligation to be nice to me whatsoever. And as for the fact that Zoe ranked me at the top of her list, well, all I can say to the other recipients of the award is Ha ha!
Writers may be as shy and solitary as oysters, working away day after day, year after year, in the anonymity of their dark, dank offices, but they in fact crave attention, at least attention directed at their work (the work, which after all is merely another disguise designed to deflect attention from our shy and solitary selves). Every award we receive is as precious as the Pulitzer and if you don't think it is, you're probably not a writer.

Still what I am suggesting is that unless we branch out, we're going to run out of potential recipients of the kreativ blogger award in a big hurry. Thus, rather than pass the award along to Plain Chicken, The Mouth O' The Mule, Who Am Us Anyway, Clicks and Pops, Classic Movies, and all the other blogsters I read on a daily basis, I am forwarding the award to my favorite deceased movie critics, who despite their passing continue to influence the way we think about movies. This expands the potential list of rewardees rather substantially, and if somehow they hear about the award and write about it, imagine what a story that would be!

Some, you will note, are also known for accomplishments other than film criticism.

The seven:
James Agee
Bosley Crowther
Leslie Halliwell
Pauline Kael
Gene Siskel
Francois Truffaut
Robin Wood

Then apparently because the kreativ blogger award works in sevens, I am supposed to reveal seven personal things about myself—a real trick since I have spent my entire life concealing the personal, even from myself. Here they are, though, each fact somehow related to the one before it.

* I own 559 movies on DVD or Blu-Ray (not including television-related stuff or the 1600 or so movies on VHS tape I have floating around in the basement). I have arranged them on the shelf chronologically, from 1915's Les Vampires to last year's Up.

* We have only one working television in the house. It's in the family room.

* My "porn" name (first pet/street where I grew up) is "Snappy Landings." (Katie's is "Janie Colton.")

* Jane Greer is the only femme fatale in movie history I would let shoot me.


* My favorite movie to take a long nap to is The Thing From Another World.

* I wrote my first book when I was thirteen years old—125 handwritten pages. It remains unpublished.

* Don Rickles has insulted me personally.


That's it. Tomorrow, back to the lucrative business of blogging with Scarface, Part Two.

17 comments:

Who Am Us Anyway? said...

Missed it by that much!

Sums up my life and -- wait, that could actually be a good prize. The Missed It By That Much Award. A little gold statue of Maxwell Smart snapping his fingers. Yeah, we could give it to seven blogs that ALMOST won an award and then each of them would have to ... nah.

And P.S. Seriously, thanks for the shout out, Myth. I'm proud to be in such good company & that's reward enuf.

KC said...

I'm with Mr. Who Am Us--the shout out is sufficient and much appreciated. I'm sure Ms. Kael would approve. Good thinking Snappy!

Zoe said...

haha flipping excellent blogging, funny funny post, and thanks for the shout out too.
You wrote everything i was thinking about the award, 7 people is a bit excessive.

great post Myth!

mister muleboy said...

Don't take this wrong, but --

Don Rickles also insulted you professionally.

He insulted you culturally.

Hell, he insulted your ability to understand insults!



I am pleased that one of my porn names is Sergio Winterset.

I say "one" because I have many first pets and first streets. . . .

mister muleboy said...

PS I wasn't hurt that I didn't win your award; the last award I won cost me another divorce.

Bu did get me written up in "Swank" magazine . . . .

Mythical Monkey said...

Don't take this wrong, but --

Don Rickles also insulted you professionally.

He insulted you culturally.

Hell, he insulted your ability to understand insults!


Ah, those were the days ...

Lupner said...

Curious as always, just wondering exactly what words Mister Rickles used to insult you -- if you'd care to share. And/or the title of unpublished book. Just curious.

Congrats and thanks to all of the listed bloggers -- whose kreativ-ity and energy help keep us commenters- and/or lurkers-only entertained and informed on a daily basis. A kudos to you!

Faithfully,
Cindy Blue Coat

Mythical Monkey said...

just wondering exactly what words Mister Rickles used to insult you

Hmm. I had to root around in some old e-mails to my brother to find these ...

Rickles: "You Italian?"
Me: "No, I'm a Southerner. From Tennessee."
Rickles: "Tennessee? We're not playing 'states' here! I'm from Oklahoma, myself. So what! Kiss mah grits! No, no, what's your heritage? Are you German, Irish --?"
Me: "Uh, I'm English."
Rickles: "English. That's good. We need you people for the muffins. I like the way you English make love. 'Care for a pop, Mary?' When we Jews make love, we circle the bed three times and get an estimate."

That was the first time. The second time, which I had completely forgotten, it went like this:

Rickles: "What's your name?"
Me: "John."
Rickles: "Oh, named for a toilet. What's your son's name, Flush? You married, John?"
Me: "Yes."
Rickles: "How long have you been married?"
Me: "Fourteen years." [so this was six years ago]
Rickles: "Fourteen years. You look like a quiet, reserved guy. I'll bet when you make love, you take off your glasses, sit on the end of the bed and go [makes a kissy face]. We Jews, when we make love, we circle the bed three times and get an estimate." [hey, I got the same joke twice!]
Rickles: "Now, John, you been married a long time, sometimes you gotta spice things up. Last night, my wife and I played 'Barge on the Mississippi.' It was wild. I was the barge. [makes slow thrusting motion with hips] Boom! Boom! She was the dock. Boom! Boom! And she kept yelling 'Dock the barge! Dock the barge!' Then I had a black man sit on my shoulders and sing 'Old Man River.' [singing] 'Old man river, that old man river' Boom! Boom! It was wild.
Rickles: "We tried something new this week, John. I sat on the end of the bed. I was a beaver. [makes face and noises like a beaver eating wood] My wife kept yelling, 'Find the dam! Find the dam!' It was wild.
Rickles: "Now John, let me tell you about our honeymoon. We played Cochise and the Indians. I painted a target on her ass. Then I shot an arrow into it. Then I painted eyes on it and a smile, and I've been kissing it ever since.
Rickles: "John. My wife and I recently went down to Mexico. Oh, it was terrible. She was running around yelling [running, rear end clenched] 'I think it's the salad!' and I was yelling [running in other direction, rear end clenched] 'I think it's the tomatoes.' Then we get back to the restaurant, the waiter comes over [grabs crotch, comic Mexican accent] 'You want a burrito? You want a taco?'
Rickles: "You been married 14 years, John. I've been married 38 years. You have to put up with things. You have to do things. Like at four o'clock in the morning, my wife starts with 'Pussycat. Pussycat.' And I have to get under the bed and say 'Meow. Meow.' But you do it -- because everything's in her name."

To tell you the truth, he was tired after doing his song-and-dance routine, "I'm A Nice Guy" and I think I was a soft touch. He could do his show for me without worrying about whether I'd try to horn in on his act.

After the show, he came over and shook hands with Mister Muleboy, bellotoot and me.

Oh, those were good times. After the show, we'd either go up to the Top of the Trop for a drink -- what was the name of that singer, Mister Muleboy? -- or we'd stroll down the boardwalk to a pizza joint that was always open until midnight and get a couple of slices.

I miss Atlantic City -- when are we going again?

mister muleboy said...

After the show, we'd either go up to the Top of the Trop for a drink -- what was the name of that singer, Mister Muleboy?

The incomparable Beth Tinnon, of course.

MythMon is right, of course, that Rickles was tired and gathering steam whilst riffing on the Monkey. He nearly sat down to chat.

I, of course, suffered no such indignities.



He merely sat in my lap, looked at me for a beat, got up, and said

I'm a friend -- lose the weight!

Of course, two shows later he made my lifetime by calling me "Tiny". . . .



PS

I miss Atlantic City -- when are we going again?

Um, how about the next time there's an unexpected ice/snow storm in late March, during which our [rear-wheel-drive] Lincoln Town Car lurched all over the Delaware Bridge. . . .

Mythical Monkey said...

Um, how about the next time there's an unexpected ice/snow storm in late March, during which our [rear-wheel-drive] Lincoln Town Car lurched all over the Delaware Bridge. . . .

Definitely my favorite part of that trip was not winding up at the bottom of the Chesapeake Bay -- which seemed like a real option there for a while.

And when we did get there, Rickles had a cold and was performing in the worst venue in town before the deadest audience ever.

A real low point in the Rickles Chronicles ...

But not long after, he came out with his best selling book and starred in that popular HBO documentary, won an Emmy and achieved National Treasure status, which rejuvenated him. The last couple of shows, he was great.

Uncle Tom said...

didn't you also once shoot a man in Reno...just to watch him die?

Or was that a different John?

I forget - either way, you both lived in Hendersonville and that has to mean something.

Uncle Tom said...

by the way, you should have told Rickles you were a WASP and you don't make love standing up because it could lead to dancing -

Husky Navarro said...

Uncle Tom -- there can be no greater mistake than trying to respond with a joke.

Of any kind.

mister rickles eats such jokesters up, chews on them, hangs them from ropes, and then comes back for more.

It can be scary.. .. .. ..

Mythical Monkey said...

didn't you also once shoot a man in Reno...just to watch him die?

We sure knew some interesting people back in the day -- Johnny Cash, George Jones and Tammy Wynette, Bobby Bare, the Oak Ridge Boys, Roy Orbison -- without realizing as kids that they weren't just "the people who lived down the street."

That's one thing about being a kid -- your idea of who's a celebrity is completely different. Captain Bob on the Popeye Show? Intimidating celebrity god. Roy Orbison? Nice guy who wears sunglasses.

And then there was the heavy drinking George Jones, who as you noted with wonder one day, "Some days he's really nice and other days he's really mean."

Of course, now they all sit around and say, "Boy, I knew the Mythical Monkey way back when ..."

Lupner said...

No doubt, Mister MythMon, no doubt . . . and hoping for a film op. that might land them a Katie Award someday, some way . . .

Thanks for the chapters from the Rickles Chronicles, you Followers of Don. Sounds like good tahmes to me!

mister muleboy said...

Thanks for the chapters from the Rickles Chronicles,

Good thing he didn't include the [excised] chapter on the Italian Hookers . . . .



or the decor in our digs!

Mythical Monkey said...

Good thing he didn't include the [excised] chapter on the Italian Hookers . . . .

At first I assumed this was a throw-away joke and then I realized there probably were Italian hookers wandering around Atlantic City's casinos. Although if we're remembering the same thing, I think it was gaggle of high school girls at the ragged end of a prom date goofing around on the escalators.

Not really a chapter, more like a line in a description of the Atlantic City milieu -- cigarette smoke, worn carpet, polyester shirts, blue jeans, pit bosses, the incessant singing of the slot machines, slow-motion waitresses schleping watered-down drinks, Italian hookers or maybe high school prom dates in purple spandex mini-dresses. Low-rent desperation, a weird combination of electronic glitz and the Elks Lodge.

You have not missed anything.