Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Sometimes It Rages Even When It's Calm

First thing this morning, I'm walking past my TV and I see something I don't understand and I am surprised because video on the news is not usually weirder than the movies playing in my head. Then I go to work and forget about it. Mid-morning, I get up from my desk, go to the ladies' room, do lady things and return in less than two minutes. That should have been my first clue. When I return, there's a small gift wrapped in tissue paper a blue usually found in tropical fish. I said what I said last time.


Perhaps you think I'm exaggerating when I say I point at my co-workers and bark. Perhaps you think no one over the age of twelve peels off their socks in a group, slip-covers their fists and talks in falsetto. Perhaps in any other office, I'd be inches from unemploment, but believe it or not, my office is just as interesting as I am "special." Let's leave that in quotes. I grab the sealed package and run to the middle of the room.

Lupe: I thought you needed those.
Tata: You went to IKEA? Did you feel like you were gone for a week and inexplicably smell of lingonberries later?
Lupe: Yeah...and I went in for a couch.
Tata: Look! There's a court jester and a dragon and a king and a really bald queen so maybe it's a king and a king, and there's a prince and a pretty, pretty pink princess and an unarmed knight and a magician and a - what the hell?
Helen: It's an owl. You're an idiot!
Tata: I am an idiot! It is obviously an owl! And this guy wants the throne for himself! A usurper puppet!

It's a good thing I have ten fingers and four friends. For the next few hours, a puppet or two conduct work-related conversations with my co-workers. Then I remember the thing I saw on the news and didn't understand. Googling doesn't seem to help. My friend at NPR comes up with this. I try explaining to DBK.

Tata: I'm telling you, firemen were running from a burning building, waving very hairy goats that looked mostly perturbed. It's the kind of thing that usually happens INSIDE my head, not in West New York, NJ.
DBK: Oh! Oh! Firemen were running from a burning building in West New York, NJ, waving hairy goats. Now I get it. Seriously, not only did I not see this amazing video footage, but it was only sounding a little crazy before and now it sounds truly insane. Not that I don't believe you. I believe that you saw video of firemen running from a burning building in West New York, NJ waving hairy goats. I now wish that I had seen it too so that we could compare notes instead of having this increasingly inane email exchange. Why were the goats hairy? When is Weehauken?
Tata: Some goats have that short hair. These were angora goats. Hippie goats. Hair flying in every direction. And yet you could clearly see indignant looks on the faces of those goats!
DBK: This missive gives rise to so many questions. Why were goats in the building? Were they on the lease? Did they start the fire? The image of goats smoking in bed comes to mind.

While I was still pondering goat-wielding firemen, I got an email that reminded me that I'm not the only one watching the charming moving pictures.
Just a quick email to let you know about our exciting new contest!

Do you yodel? Maybe it's just in the shower or when you're talking to your cat, but if you have the rare talent, we need you. We are looking for a yodel to possibly use in a future McPhee product. The best yodel will win 100 slightly stiff Rubber Chickens, a $200 online Gift Certificate and the chance to be used in a future product! Click below for details and remember, NO COUNTRY YODELING!

I immediately emailed Johnny, who howls every night with his many mutts. The artistic relation between howling and yodeling eludes a civilian like myself, and while we were in high school, Johnny brandished a notorious rubber chicken named Claude. Who knows, he might feel nostalgic. Or maybe not.
I'll watch anything with Val Kilmer in it, and The Salton Sea looked like my kind of cinema. It even said modern noir on the box. A double personality/speed freak/jazz trumpeter/narcotics informant/recently bereaved husband tries to figure out who/which he is and what happened, with the help of large-caliber firearms. I just couldn't get past the first twenty minutes. Val Kilmer is no Laurence Olivier, but as a fellow Santa Fean and as a human being, I feel for a guy who has to read lines like they gave him in that movie. Oh my God.

One of my postings for gigs got a bite. I may be playing a festival gig in Albuquerque with an Australian blues/rock guy. Most important, I have the shoes. It'll be good to be out there again. I'm just glad I don't play jazz trumpet. I'm not sure if I'd have to yodel.

Is it crazy that I still love Val?


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