Dumb and Dumber
Phillipe and Jorge have been intrigued by the fight between big media boys CBS and AT&T, which has led to AT&T’s DirectTV dropping CBS programming from its available channels. Since P&J have Cox, we don’t have a dog in this fight, and because we, along with the bulk of the American public, are incredibly self-centered and could care less about DirectTV customers being royally screwed, it is another aspect of this battle that catches our attention.
Since AT&T dropped the hammer and has deleted CBS from airing, we have noticed on Cox as we watch WPRI Channel 12, that the local CBS affiliate has continuously run a news “crawl” at the bottom of the set during its programs asking viewers to call AT&T and demand that CBS programs be reinstated and giving them a number to call to complain. Now stop us if we are wrong, but if DirectTV customers are not getting the CBS feed, it is highly unlikely they even see this message. Oh, right, that does make a bit of sense. Perhaps using this message as the core of an ad campaign should be run on all other stations, especially local news channels, which might be a little more effective than blindly pissing into the wind as WPRI is now doing.
This is not an unprecedented case of “What the hell are you doing? It doesn’t make the slightest bit of sense.” P&J think about the same type of TV scrawl message going out during large storms when the power has gone out, telling people to call a certain phone number to report the loss. Well, uh, perhaps the message would have a bit more impact if it could actually reach customers out there sitting in the dark listening to their battery-charged radios.
Two of the most humorous examples of this dumb and dumber tactic P&J recall involved the exciting news announcement by a bank that it now had Braille on its touchpads at their drive-through windows. OK, did the coin drop for you yet? P&J would imagine there are very few blind people driving cars that could take advantage of such an exciting new service.
The second example, cited in this space decades ago, was when the then-leading radio news station WEAN-AM started touting its latest technological breakthrough, because the station was using Doppler color weather maps for their forecasts. Well, that addition of color maps was certainly a boon to their radio listeners.
Think just a wee bit before you act, media barons, please. Unless you are trying to give us a laugh, for which we thank you mightily.
Send in the Clown
Since the United States is seen having a “special relationship” with Great Britain, although we wouldn’t call Prince Harry marrying Meghan Markle part of that deal, it’s hats off to the Brits for sinking to our level when it comes to electing a certifiably insane person to lead.
Phillipe and Jorge are referring to the newly chosen prime minister of Old Blighty, Boris Johnson. Known as BoJo, or more aptly, Bozo, he is a philandering, racist, perpetually lying political whore with a preposterous blond coif given to brainless showoff antics that give him all the veritas of a feather. Fortunately, not all Britons feel obligated to slit their wrists at how their new head honcho will bring the nation into disrepute and turn it into an international joke, as Americans have with President Pussy-Grabber, the rapist/racist who couldn’t tell the truth about water being wet and has made us the laughingstock of the world — a Marat/Sade sideshow of incompetence.
Needless to say, BoJo and Dodo are best of mates, even though you know that both of them are on high alert at being thrown under a bus or stabbed in the back by the other at the slightest provocation. Like our own liar-in-chief, Bozo will say anything that pops into his head at any moment, truth having no part in that play. Johnson led the English campaign to exit the European Union, Brexit, with more falsehoods about the impact on the countries in the UK than could fit on the side of a bus … which he conveniently used to help persuade voters that exiting the EU would be the best thing in the world for his countrymen and women, until the proverbial hit the fan when the UK was forced to come up with a plan that doesn’t bankrupt the entire British public and economy. And don’t hold your breath waiting for a solution from Bozo, unless it involves throwing dishes at his mistress in late night disputes, which he has mastered, as recent police reports attest.
Seeing these two idiots schmoozing each other in public while Johnson’s first-grader’s hairdo and The Donald’s rug-worthy coif are blowing in the wind and exposing enough hair plugs to make Joe Biden whinny will frighten countries from Argentina to Indonesia.
To cite the old joke, “Why did the sun never set on the British Empire? Because God didn’t trust Queen Victoria in the dark.” Substitute “Boris” for “Queen Victoria” and you get the drift. It would be funny, if it weren’t.
Criswell Didn’t See Facebook Coming
As always, P&J continue to read a variety of publications and, while we will look at what is posted online, we prefer having a hard copy of the more reliable news publications. What we have noticed in the past few years is the incredible amount of misinformation posted on social media. Twitter (which we rarely look at) and Facebook seem to be full of fighting, hatred and nostalgia for past times (we will not use the hackneyed phrase, “back in the day.”
From what we can tell, there appear to be an awful lot of people spending far too much of their time on social media. Good luck to all of us in the future because in the immortal words of Criswell in the final scene of Plan 9 from Outer Space, that is where we will spend the rest of our lives.
Mad About You
If Phillipe and Jorge need to point the finger at anyone for having us turn out to be professional wiseasses, it would be at Mad magazine for their influence on our Wonder Years.
Mad recently pulled the plug on its publication, but it has been a non-entity on the satirical scene for ages. Sort of like “Saturday Night Live” on NBC, which other than its political takes on Trump and Co., died an unannounced public death years ago as it tried to carry on the Belushi/Aykroyd/Curtin/Radner legacy of actually being funny, which was undermined (still) by overlong skits that are decidedly unimaginative and far from humorous. The graceful thing to do, Mr. Lorne Michaels, would be to pull the plug on this turkey ASAP, as it has become an unwatchable embarrassment. All it does now is constantly beg the question of who in hell thought the segments being beaten like dead horses as viewers cringed should see airtime.
Mad made its bones by being the magazine that the parents of Baby Boomers thought was the equivalent of pornography. In fact, it was a riot, full of absurdist humor written (and drawn) by folks who could care less about whether you understood their references or political leanings, and appeared to be mainly to amuse their colleagues, the Great Unwashed be damned. The sketches and cartoons tried the imaginations and knowledge of P&J’s generation, as these were adult products that demanded your attention to the underlying “fuck authority and don’t believe what your parents tell you.” P&J distinctly recall at one point in our ‘ute of having to find the definition of “planned obsolescence,” used by “the usual gang of idiots,” as Mad writers described themselves, in a hilarious, but telling bit about the Detroit motor industry.
Alfred E. Neuman and his famed doofus smile and “What, me worry?” motto was the face of Mad, but only the tip of the iceberg that changed many Boomers’ outlook on the world in a wonderful direction.
P.S. – As the past is celebrated as Mad pops its media clogs, the separately written and published Mad books from the late ‘50s and early ‘60s, featuring takeoffs on The Shadow and Wonder Woman, among many others, remain pure genius. If you see one at a yard sale, snap it up.