Current events for the terminally juvenile
Before I start this story, I want you to know I’m not one of those annoying people who pops out of bed at the first crow’s bellow with a song on her lips and a yen for conversation. Those kind of people make me twitch with barely repressed homicidal urges, so don’t think I’m gonna start preachin’ the gospel of early-to-bed-early-to-rise. I used to be a sleep-all-day-play-all-night kind of gal, too, and until I was in my mid-20s, it wasn’t unusual for me to happily snore until noon on a Saturday. That’s figuratively speaking, of course, as I am the picture of feminine propriety and do not, therefore, snore, no matter what Jim says.
That said, my body has become so accustomed to an early first shift that I naturally wake up at hours I’d never thought existed at the beginning of a day when I was younger. These days, sleeping until 6:30 a.m. seems like a luxury. Even then, Jim is usually awake at least a half hour before me, and is up watching TV by the time I stumble out into the living room. Yes, people, this is what you have to look forward to when you get old.
There are some definite perks to watching the tube at that time of the morning, though. I don’t mean the infomercials, because as far as I’m concerned, the people who star in these horrid spectacles are peppy, talkative morning people, and are therefore on my dung-flinging list. What you want to watch at sunrise is a national news program. Sure, it’s nice to be well informed, but I have ulterior motives. Sometimes you see things that only make it past the censors once, and if you look for it later in the day, the best part of the segment will mysteriously be gone.
A number of years ago, CNN ran a piece about a huge gala that was being thrown somewhere in the United States for an international debutantes’ ball. Yes, debutantes. You know when someone brings up debutantes, the conversation can only become more bizarre. The debutantes’ ball was apparently serious business for the scores of young ladies in attendance, as we got to watch them practice their bows, curtsies, and overall Stepford-Wives-in-Training personas. It was completely surreal and riveting, and then they stuck a microphone in a Scottish deb’s face, and things really got interesting.
The unblemished redhead gal in the perfect white dress was jabbering effusively in her Scottish burr, amazed at the scale on which Americans operate.
“Americans do everything large,” she gushed, “When they have cars, they have big cars. . .”
She hesitated, and I wondered if she would go where I thought she was going. Before I could wonder too long, the person behind the microphone couldn’t help but prompt the poor girl:
“And when they have balls. . .?” Oh, yeah, the bastard said it to her. Would she take the bait?
“They have big balls!” she asserted, enthusiastically and cluelessly.
Jim and I looked at each other, affirming that yes, you heard it too, and then laughed ourselves into a useless state. We had the VCR all ready for the next time the spot ran, but unfortunately, someone with a little sense (and possibly fear for his job) had done some editing, and it was gone but for the lovely memory.
We hadn’t seen anything quite as giggle inducing as that again until yesterday morning. It was dawn on a Saturday, so what else would one be watching but some financial program on MSNBC? I was paying more attention, frankly, to my peanut butter toast than to the stock market news, but I was lucky enough to look up at just the right time.
On a perfectly serious and buttoned-down business show, they were running an also perfectly serious story about Procter and Gamble’s acquisition of Gillette. For some reason, I idly looked up as they started showing a slide show of different common P&G products. There was toothpaste, there was soap, there was a cartoon of. . .WHAT?
There, in the midst of the rundown of all the familiar P&G items, on stuffy MSNBC, they showed a cartoon, much like the ones in the old Johnson Smith catalogs, of a man sitting on a whoopee cushion. And just in case you didn’t understand that this was a drawing of a man sitting on a flatulence-simulating device, there was a sound effect coming off the back of his chair, written in bold so no one could miss it: FAAAART!
As soon as the next picture flashed on the screen, Jim and I looked at each other, and once again exchanged that look of Holy Blowdryin’ Jesus, did you see that too?
“Did that just say –“ I started and then began to convulse with completely juvenile laughter.
All Jim could say through the tears of mirth streaming down his face was, “FAAAAART!”
I wondered for a split second if maybe the whoopee cushion was actually a P&G product, but it seems more likely that someone in the graphics department was perhaps enjoying a last day on the job. We didn’t even bother with the VCR, as we’d learned that these kind of things usually only get by somebody’s watchful eye once. You just have to consider yourself lucky to’ve caught it that one time.
Jim’s said it to me a couple of times today, and someone might have to say a prayer for me to mature someday, because it’s still pull-the-car-over, wet-yer-fucking-pants funny!