Daily Archives: April 30, 2016

Top Ten Worst TV Show Endings/Series Finales Ever – #10 – The Sopranos

1378294009-800pxIt’s not over until the fat lady sings but more often than not, TV writers have a tendency to make the fat lady shrug her shoulders, go, “Meh” and walk unceremoniously off stage.

We the viewers invest a lot of time in our favorite television shows. Is it too much to ask for the people in charge of these shows to return the favor?

From BQB HQ in Fabulous East Randomtown, here are the Top Ten Worst TV Series Finales Ever:

(NOTE: SPOILERS are revealed, so if you want to be disappointed on your own without me telling you how you’ll be disappointed, read no further.)

10.  The Sopranos – Every series sets forth a number of big questions and the unspoken deal between writer and viewer is that if viewers spend enough time with a show, the questions will be answered.

The question dangling over Tony Soprano’s head? What was going to happen to the New Jersey mob boss?

Was he going to end up in jail? Killed by one of his enemies? Betrayed by one of his friends (or hell, even his family)?

Or would he just come out on top, one step ahead of everyone who wanted to see him behind bars or six feet under?

The answer we got? “Meh.”

The show ends with Tony and family about to order dinner at a restaurant. In an homage to The Godfather, a man in a Member’s Only jacket ominously enters the bathroom. Fans of gangster flicks immediately recall how Michael Corleone once came out of a restaurant bathroom with a gun blazing.

Daughter Meadow arrives on the scene late and has difficulty parallel parking her car outside, suggesting that she may very well luck out into narrowly escaping a blood bath.

Like so many viewers, I too started slapping my cable box when the screen went black.

The last season tied up a seasonal arc. There was a whole beef between Tony and the New York mob and Tony came out on top. Fine, but that didn’t really answer what his overall fate would be.

As the viewers of the groundbreaking show, we really deserved to know how Tony’s life story ends.

And we just got a make up your own ending.  You were free to think that Tony, Carmella and AJ were massacred.  Or, if you prefer, Meadow joined them, they had a nice dinner, and then Tony continued to be a mobster anyway.

The sad part? Tony had so much anxiety about the uncertainty of his life. He often lamented how he’d been drafted into the “family business” by default.  He sought stability and suffered from panic attacks that made him pass out when he didn’t get it.

Take away all the evil mobsters, murders, drugs, debauchery and death and the average viewer with a family, a mortgage, a tough job, struggling to make ends meet and wondering what tough breaks life was going to hurl at him next likely found Tony’s anxious plight to be relatable.

Ironically, all we got was anxiety over our unanswered questions in the end.

Worse, producer David Chase, years later in an interview, noted that the ending meant Tony lived.

Sigh.  We don’t even get the do-it-yourself ending anymore.

Major props to this show though because it really was one of the first to draw big audiences to cable TV, proving that there was a desire among the public for darker storylines and well…the kind of gratuitous sex and violence that only pay television can provide.

We wouldn’t be oggling fantasy maiden boobs today on Game of Thrones had The Sopranos not paved the way with the ladies of the Bada Bing.

 

 

 

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How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 89

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“I’m not the devil,” Blythe said. “But I’ll give him your regards.

The Reverend wasn’t exactly a formidable opponent. Short and pudgy, bald with unruly white hair on the sides of his head. He pushed his spectacles up the bridge of his nose.

“You’re all the devil to me,” the Reverend said as he thumbed through his bible. “Pardon me. I have lost my place.”

Blythe hollered over the Reverend. “Whatever this is, it won’t work, Slade! Stop hiding behind an old man! It’s beneath you!”

Like trained pets, the zombies stood still, moaning to themselves. Blythe had brought six conductors with him. Five were already in werewolf form. The sixth, a tall, slender man, had black hair with just a light dusting of grey flecks throughout.

Still dressed in his conductor’s uniform, Blythe’s man unholstered his pistol.

“Shall I relieve you of this foolishness, sir?” he asked.

“No Mr. Gentry,” Blythe replied. “I’m mildly curious as to what this fellow is up to.”

The Reverend licked his pointer finger as he flipped through his bible until he triumphantly tapped the page he’d been searching for and wagged his finger in the air. “Get behind me, Satan!”

A grin worked its way across Blythe’s face. Gentry snickered.

“Mr. Gentry,” Blythe said. “Be a good man and take Misters Vaughn and Morris around the back in case they’re planning something.”

“Right away, sir,” Gentry replied. The conductor headed for the back of the livery with two werewolves in tow.

The Reverend carried on with his reading.

“And Jesus said, ‘Get behind me, Satan! For you are but a stumbling block to me. You do not have in mind the concerns of God!”

Blythe had been alive for thousands of years and never once had someone so frail taken such a bold stand against him. He was amused.

The vampire walked closer to the preacher, taking in the impromptu sermon.

“And then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?”

The Reverend closed his bible. Blythe mocked the preacher, clapping loudly as if he’d enjoyed the performance.

“I have never heard a finer reading of the Book of Matthew,” Blythe said. “Tell me, are you going somewhere with this?”

“I am,” the Reverend said. “I take it you forfeited your soul to become the abomination you are now?”

“Indeed,” Blythe said. “And it was the best decision I ever made. My soul was only slowing me down. That’s what souls do.”

“Oh no,” the Reverend said. “Souls raise people up. Hold them to a higher standard. A man’s soul is constantly whispering to him to do the right thing. People do wicked deeds when they ignore their souls and you, why you clearly behave as a man who lost his soul long ago.”

“Good riddance,” Blythe said.

The Reverend tapped his finger on the cover of his bible. “Don’t you see, son? You could get your soul back.”

Blythe raised a quizzical eyebrow and waited for the Reverend to elaborate.

“Jesus told his disciples to ignore worldly pleasures and material gain, for all of that is worthless if one loses his soul in the pursuit of personal power,” the Reverend said. “Here you are, poised to take control of America and I assume you won’t stop there. The world will be next?”

“That’s the long term plan,” Blythe replied.

“And won’t world domination seem pointless to you once you realize that you lost your soul along the way?” the Reverend asked.

“I wasn’t really using it,” Blythe said.

“No,” the Reverend said. “No, I doubt that. I’m willing to wager that you were once a decent man and you were somehow led astray. Something put you on the path to become what you are today.”

“This bores me now, Reverend,” Blythe replied.

“What if I told you that you could get your soul back?” the Reverend asked.

“I’d tell you that you are a senile imbecile,” Blythe answered.

The Reverend shook his copy of the good book. “It’s all right here. The world means nothing to a man who forfeits his soul to control it but sacrifice yourself in the name of Jesus and you will find your soul.”

A visibly puzzled Blythe replied, “What?”

“There are biblical scholars far more learned than me,” the Reverend said. “But surely this passage means that if you would repent for your wicked ways, take up arms against the evil that you serve and sacrifice yourself in the Lord’s name, then your soul will no doubt be redeemed in the eyes of the Lord. All will be forgiven and your soul will dwell in Heaven for all eternity.”

Blythe’s eye’s glistened as if they were full of hope. He clutched his hand over the space in his chest where his heart used to beat.

“Oh Reverend,” Blythe said. “Do you really think so?’

“I know so, my boy,” the Reverend said.

Blythe surprised the Reverend with a hug. The vampire pulled the old man close and rested his chin on the Reverend’s shoulder.

“I’m sorry,” Blythe said.

“There, there, son,” the Reverend said as he patted Blythe’s shoulder.

“It’s just that you have no idea how long I have waited for someone like you to say this to me,” Blythe said.

“It’s all right,” the Reverend said. “You were lost but now you have been found.”

“Indeed I have,” Blythe said. “And now I have a lesson that I must share with you.”

“What is it?” the Reverend asked.

Click. Blythe’s fangs popped out from his upper gums. The Reverend screamed in pain as those sharp pointy teeth dug their way into his neck. He struggled to push Blythe away but he grew weaker with every sip of blood Blythe took.

Finally, the Reverend’s body went limp and collapsed on the ground.

With blazing red eyes and blood dripping from his lips, Blythe knelt down to give the Reverend the lesson he spoke of.

“Being without a soul means never having to say you’re sorry.”

The Reverend gasped one last breath as the life drained out of his eyes. He was no more.

The vampire wiped the blood off his face. He retracted his fangs and his eyes returned to normal. He looked to his zombies. They were licking their lips and aching for a taste of the Reverend but they stayed put.

“Finish off the seconds,” Blythe ordered them.

Instantly, the undead swarmed the Reverend, ripping his carcass apart, clawing at each other just to get a piece.

Blythe struck a match and lit the rag stuffed into his special cocktail.

“Enough stalling, Slade!” Blythe said as he hauled his arm back, ready to throw the bottle at the livery. “Get out here and face me!”

Suddenly, Blythe felt an intense pain in his chest. He looked down to find he’d been pierced by a wooden arrow, the sharp stone head of which had already lodged inside of him.

He dropped the bottle, allowing it to crack in a fiery explosion just before he hit the ground.

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How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 88

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Doc went cross-eyed staring at all the gun barrels pointing at his nose. Slade. Miss Bonnie. Gunther. All had their sites trained on him.

“What, did one of you want the rabbit’s foot?” Doc asked. “I can’t say it was very lucky for the little fellow but I’ll fetch it if you wish.”

“Not funny,” Miss Bonnie said.

“Oh come now,” Doc said. “Who among you has never had rabbit stew?”

“That’s not the same thing,” Gunther said.

Miss Bonnie grabbed Annabelle by the wrist. “You’re coming with us.”

Annabelle pulled her hand back. “He’s fine.”

“Have you lost your mind?” Miss Bonnie asked as she pointed to Doc’s blood soaked beard. “Look at him.”

“He’s a genius, Bonnie,” Annabelle said. “He’ll figure out how to cure himself, won’t you Doc?”

“Indubitably, my dear,” Doc said. “There is no problem too great for science to remedy.”

“That’s not normal to want to bite into something alive like that,” Gunther said.

Doc sighed. “Did I feel a sudden urge swell up inside of me to snack on a small amount of living flesh?” the good doctor asked. “Yes. Does that mean I will carry that urge out on a human being? Of course not. I assure you that rabbit has left my hunger satiated.”

“This isn’t up for discussion,” Miss Bonnie said. “Get away from him, Annabelle.”

Annabelle stomped her foot. “You’re not my mother, Bonnie!”

The sound of hundreds of footsteps marching in unison up the road outside broke up the conversation.

Then came Blythe’s voice. “Company…halt!”

The footsteps stopped.

Gunther peeked out a dusty window and caught a glimpse of Blythe hovering over his zombie firing squad. Undead men and women all obeying the vampire’s commands with expert military precision.

“Aim high for a warning volley!”

“Aw shit,” Gunther said.  He looked up at the ceiling. “I’m a-comin’ Mavis.”

The sound of hundreds of bullets being racked up into rifles filled Slade with dread. Instinctively, he dove for Miss Bonnie, knocking her to the safety of the ground.

A storm of bullets tore through the building, whizzing over everyone’s heads.

Sarah screamed hysterically.

Miss Bonnie punched Slade in the arm.

“Oh right,” the stoic said as he jumped back up and pulled Sarah down.

Miles, the Reverend and Annabelle all hit the dirt.

Slade shimmied on his belly to join Gunther, who was crouched next to the window with his pistol drawn.

Doc didn’t appear to be particularly concerned with his health as he casually strolled toward the window to join Slade and Gunther.

A bullet pierced through Doc’s shoulder. He slapped at it like it was a mild annoyance. “Oh my, that smarts.”

Unable to aim, Slade and Gunther poked their pistols out the window and shot blindly. By sheer luck, they were able to pop a couple of zombie skulls.

Doc, on the other hand, stood directly in front of the window, accepting one bullet after the other in his chest. That didn’t slow him down as he flicked his wrists, produced his pistols, and sent a barrage of fire toward the zombie army outside.

“Second volley!” Blythe commanded.

The zombies fired again, still aiming high as if to avoid hitting anyone.

“Cease fire!” Blythe commanded.

Slade and Gunther looked at one another, each man at a loss for words.

“Slade!” Blythe shouted from outside. “Now that I have your attention, I wonder if we might have a word?”

Slade reloaded his pistol as he answered. “Sure,” he replied loudly. “Go fuck yourself. There’s three.”

“Charming as usual,” Blythe replied.

Slade looked out the window to see Blythe float down to the ground. A werewolf handed the vampire a full whiskey bottle. Blythe took it and stuffed a rag into the bottle’s neck.

“You’ve got two options here, Slade,” Blythe said. “First, you can unload your silver, throw down your steel and come outside so we can talk about how I can turn you into a very rich and powerful man.”

“Bullshit,” Slade said.

“I won’t lie and tell you there won’t be a catch,” Blythe said. “You’ll have to do some things that run contrary to the adorable little moral code you’ve developed for yourself. But since the second option is that everyone you love dies a slow, painful death while you watch, I’d take the first one if I were you.”

The Reverend stood up, dusted himself off, and joined the men at the window.

“If there’s one thing I’ve learned from reading this,” the preacher said as he wagged his bible at Slade, “It’s that devil’s bargains only work out for the devil.”

“We gathered, Rev,” Gunther said.

“I’m going outside,” the Reverend said.

“The hell you are,” Gunther replied.

“The Lord will protect me,” the Reverend said. “Or if not, I’ll at least be able to buy you all some time. Either way…”

The Reverend pointed a finger toward the ceiling. “…his will shall be done.”

“This is a hell of a time to get your faith back, Reverend,” Gunther said.

“Faith is never entirely present nor is it entirely gone,” the Reverend said. “Everyday we all struggle over whether to doubt or believe. I must now choose to believe for if I’m not able to put my studies of the Lord’s ways to some good use here then my life will have been for nothing.”

Slade grabbed the Reverend’s arm. “He’ll kill you for sure.”

“Then so be it,” the Reverend said. “It’ll be a glorious distraction.”

The preacher looked at Sarah and Miss Bonnie.

“And I’m sure you’ll know what to do.”

The Reverend leaned in close to Slade’s ear and whispered. “I’ve seen the way you look at the whore, son. There wouldn’t be any shame in it if you can make an honest woman of her but come clean with the Widow Farquhar. No one likes being the last to know.”

Slade nodded. The Reverend opened the door a crack and waved a white handkerchief.

“Oh what the hell is this?” Blythe asked as he saw the Reverend walk out with his hands up, one of them clutching his bible.

“I wish to talk, demon,” the Reverend replied.

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BQB’s Fifteen Year Old TV Show Spoiler Rule

Hey 3.5 Readers.1378294009-800px

You know when I was a kid back in the 90’s when everyone walked around dressed like a lumberjack singing heartbreakingly depressing songs, it was customary that if you weren’t around a television during a show’s appointed airing time, you missed it.

Sure, maybe if you were lucky a pal taped it for you.  Or maybe you could buy the video cassette for an outrageous price, but by and large, if you missed it then you missed it.

Ergo, if someone who saw the show was kind enough to tell you what the hell happened to your favorite characters, you thanked him or her for doing so.

Thanks to technology, things are all different now.

A) There are more TV shows to watch than ever before.

B) You can watch them whenever you want, wherever you want – in bed on your TV, during your lunch break on your tablet, on the can on your phone.

Holy shit.  If your device gets WiFi, you can watch a TV show on it. Hell, you’re probably watching House of Cards right now on the little screen on your coffee maker, aren’t you?

Thus, the great irony:

There are more shows to watch than ever before but no one is allowed to talk about them.

Why?

SPOILERS!

Yes, spoilers. Because now, a person who missed the show when it first aired has options.  Hell, many shows don’t even have appointed airing times anymore. Streaming services like Netflix just throw them up for subscribers to watch whenever they want.

And you’d better not talk to anyone about them!

Yes, you’d really love to share your thoughts with your coworkers about Walter White’s transition from humble teacher to criminal mastermind.

You’d better not. Becky in accounting might very well want to start watch Breaking Bad while dropping a deuce on the can six years from now.

Accordingly, it is only right that you be thoroughly rebuked and compared to Hitler if you share a single solitary detail about Walter White’s journey into depravity because doing so will essentially rob Becky of the option of viewing Walter’s journey one day on her own.

It could be any show. Any show at all.

Dexter.  Holy shit the ending to that show sucked.  But everyone will say you sucked worse than the ending if you tell anyone about it.

Game of Thrones?  I swear, by the Old Gods and the New, my f%$king Facebook feed is filled with Nazis demanding blood oaths that no one reveal a word about what happens because “ooo la de da I’m a special person who goes out and has fun on Sunday nights I’m too good to stay in and watch an adult version of Lord of the Rings with gratuitous titties during its appointed airing time, I want to be able to watch it whenever I want.”

And seriously.  There’s nothing that can be done about it.

Sometimes I think about splitting the difference. Express my love of a show without revealing anything too meaningful about it.

However, like I said, social media is trolled by self-appointed spoiler police:

ME: I am really enjoying this season of Game of Thrones. Epic in scope, it fills me with conflicted feelings and I tip my hat to the writers for their quality work.

RESPONSES:

TROLL #1 – Ah, F%&K you, BQB! I was hoping that the scope would be narrow! Now you’ve flushed the whole thing down the shitter for me by spilling the beans that the scope is epic.  Thanks. Thanks a lot.

TROLL #2 – BQB you assfaced jerk clown! I assumed the show would only make me feel one or two feelings tops but now that you have told me that the show makes people feel many different feelings I will be looking for those feelings and hence, will feel none of them. I hope you get run over by a bus, you fat ugly sack of dung beetle turds.

TROLL #3 – Oh, thanks a lot Mr. Big Mouth!  Sure, just tell everyone that the writing was high quality. Ruin it for the rest of us who have ten other awesome things to do before we watch the latest installment of a damn nerd show. Maybe some of us were hoping that the writing quality would be poor.  Now I won’t be pleasantly surprised to find the quality of writing is high.  You sir, are the love child of Stalin and a rabid honey badger. Please contract syphilis from a toilet seat.

Ouch.  But no joke, people are really serious about putting the kibosh on spoilers and they will attack you with the vengeance of a mama bear who thinks you stole her cub if you even so much as think about breathing a word about the slightest, teensiest weensiest detail about a TV show.

ME: I like the font the credits at the end of Better Call Saul were printed in.

TROLL #4 – Stick your head in a toilet and flush it, jackass! I have been waiting for months to find out what level of quality the credits at the end of that show were printed in and now you sir, have ruined my life! I now have to sell all my worldly possessions and join a monastery just so I can learn to make peace with the horror show you have made my life with your vile spoiler. Good day, sir. May a colony of spiders lay eggs in your brain.

So…here’s the deal.

Everyone hates a TV show spoiler, but it can be frustrating for people who sincerely love a TV show and want to share their thoughts about it.

Since there’s no hard and fast rule about how long spoilers are supposed to last, I am, right here, right now, by the power vested in me as a guy who ponied up a few bucks to create my own blog site, going to declare the following rule:

If a show ended 15 or more years ago, everyone is free to say whatever the hell they want about it and should not feel bad if anyone gets pissed off about it.

So as of this writing, if a show ended on or before April 30, 2001, feel free to flap your gums about it.

Yes, there will still be people who will direct venom your way for destroying the possibility that they might one day stream this older show while trying to pass a kidney stone, but hey, tell them to go suck an egg, because your pal BQB said you are in the right.

You too can be like me:

BQB: My favorite episode of I Love Lucy is the one where Lucy and Ethel stomp on the grapes in their bare feet.

TROLL #5 – You monster! I was going to stream I Love Lucy while waiting for my podiatrist appointment next week. Oh, the pain you’ve caused me you animal!

BQB: Suck an egg, loser. That show ended in 1957. But you know what didn’t end? That candy factory conveyer belt. Oh those chocolates just kept coming and coming and poor Lucy couldn’t wrap them fast enough. She didn’t know what to do so she started eating them and shoving them in her bra and everything.

TROLL #5 – You are the Antichrist!!!

BQB: And Lucy and Ricky had a son that they named, “Little Ricky!”

TROLL #5 – Oh God. Stop! Please stop!

BQB: Lucy always wanted to play at the club but Ricky didn’t want her to!

TROLL #5 – The horror!  The horror!

Yup.  Go on 3.5 readers. Share your knowledge of shows that ended over 15 years ago with reckless abandon.  You have my permission.

Sometimes I toss a bunch of ’em out in rapid fire just to piss the spoiler police trolls off but good:

BQB: Corporal Klinger on MASH wasn’t really gay. He just wore that dress because he was hoping the Army would declare him crazy and send him home.

TROLL #6: Bahhh! Now I can’t stream MASH eleven years from now when I need something to watch while I’m cutting my toenails!

BQB: Though Mr. Wilson complained vociferously about Dennis the Menace’s shenanigans, the old man secretly cared for the boy very much and viewed him as the grandson he never had.

TROLL #7:  Oh God!  I can never un-see this wretched spoiler!

BQB: Lassie always runs to woof at Timmy’s parents until they figure out that Timmy has fallen down a well and needs to be rescued.

TROLL #8: Please imagine me flipping you off with both middle fingers because that’s what I am doing right now because I am so angry at you for spoiling Lassie for me you dirtbag.

BQB: Jan was always jealous of Marcia. Marcia, Marcia, Marcia.

TROLL #9: I just stuffed my fingers into my ears. I’m not listening….la la la…

BQB: Archie Bunker held himself as a horrendously offensive racist yet it was hard to not like him because in the end he always came around and did the right thing anyway, albeit in a begrudging, curmudgeonly manner…

TROLL #10: And you have ruined my life.  Thanks a lot, Mr. Spoiler Pants.

So there you have it, 3.5 readers.

I have made my very first rule. If the show ended fifteen years or more from the date in question, feel free to throw caution to the wind and post anything and everything about that show on all of your social media outlets.

Tell your friends that Dick Van Dyke always trips over that damn table in the middle of the room.

Shout from the rooftops that Blanche is the sluttiest Golden Girl.

Buy a megaphone and announce proudly that Jerry and Elaine never end up together.

Because, up your butts with coconuts, spoiler trolls.

BQB has spoken and he has officially declared that it is our God given right as Americans to talk about shows that ended by the end of the first year of George W. Bush’s First Term.

  • Yes, Urkel DID do that.
  • Columbo wasn’t as dumb as he allowed criminals to think he was.
  • In West Philadelphia, the Fresh Prince was born and raised! On the playground he spent most of his days!
  • Murphy Brown took Dan Quayle on over her out of wedlock pregnancy!
  • Al Bundy started his own chapter of No Ma’am – the National Order of Men Against Amazonian Masterhood.
  • Ellen came out as gay on Ellen.
  • Sam Malone chooses the bar over Diane on Cheers.
  • Dennis Franz shows his ass on NYPD Blue.

Do you have a spoiler that’s fifteen years or older that you want to get off your chest?

Share it in the comments.

But seriously, make sure it happened before this date in 2001.

Because if you talk about a show that was still on the air anytime after that date, then you are worse than Hitler and should be flogged publicly with a wet noodle and pelted with rotten tomatoes.

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Top Ten Things Your Girlfriend Might Say About You if She Were a Classic Film Noir Detective

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Fear not, 3.5 readers.  Jake Dashing continues to file his pop culture mystery reports.

I’m just so bogged down with all my work here at Bookshelf Q. Battler Headquarters that I never have time to edit and post them.

I really need to hire an assistant.

I head a rumor though that after being told to pound sand one too many times by Attorney Donnelly, Jake has set his sights on a lady detective who he shares some uh, let’s say, “personality traits” with.

Here the mystery woman is, with the Top Ten Things Your Girlfriend Might Say About You if She Were a Classic Film Noir Detective.

(Translated from English to Film Noir Speak.)

10.  ENGLISH: Babe, you left the bathroom a mess!

FILM NOIR SPEAK:  Another day, another dollar and another twenty-four hours closer to meeting my maker. I gave up on a perfect life long ago but call me crazy, I feel like even a gal like me has a right to five minutes of peace alone in the powder room.

Sigh.  No such luck.  I open the door and find the floor covered with enough water to float the Titanic, which is ironic, because the floor is also littered with enough towels to soak up the Pacific Ocean.

I need to think.  I go to the sink and turn on the faucet, hoping a splash of cool water on my face will subdue my burning rage.  No such luck.  The sink is filled with a twisted concoction of whisker hairs, shaving cream, and toothpaste.

Just what ever gal wants. A furry viscous fluid waiting for her.  Lucky me.

Thirty seconds with a washcloth would have spared my eyes from this sight.  What’s the skinny on this palooka? Is he stupid? Rude? Was he born in a barn? Raised by hobos?

Is this some kind of bizarre power play? Leave a mess to see if the little woman will clean it up?

Or is he just that obtuse that he doesn’t notice things like this?

Speaking of noticing things, out of the corner of my eye I spot that the toilet is filled with more skid marks than the Indy 500 race track.

Men. Can’t live with ’em.  Sorry. There isn’t a second verse to that old song and dance number.

9.  ENGLISH:  I love you.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION: Love.  That and a plug nickel will buy you a cup of coffee, but at least you never have to worry about your java sprouting legs and walking away.

Men, on the other hand, have a bad habit of becoming gold medal marathon runners when you least expect it.  There one day, gone the next, the only memories he leaves you with are his silhouette against the moonlight as he makes a beeline for the door and that old familiar throbbing in your ticker…

…ba-dump…ba-dump…ba-dump.

Then again, it could just be gas.

8.  ENGLISH: I wish you’d take me somewhere nice.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION:  There’s a part of me that wants to dance. Not that I’m a spritely ballerina type mind you but the madcap irony of life is that the less you have of it, the more you want to embrace it.  Rattling around in the back of my mind like so many marbles shot by the kid with the best aggie in school are images of myself as a wrinkled up old broad, wrapped up in a shawl, rocking away in my wheelchair, cursing myself for not having danced more in my youth.

I owe it to that old gal to trip the light fantastic fella, so either cut a rug with me or I’ll find someone who will.

7.  ENGLISH:  I baked you cookies.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION: Sweets.  They’re one of the many cruel jokes played on us by the man upstairs.

Surely you’ve realized by now that the Almighty  has a peculiar sense of humor, right?

Cookies are delicious, but too many and you’ll end up looking like the love child of Fatty Arbuckle and King Kong.

Making whoopee is an equally pleasant pastime, but pick the wrong person and you’ll end up with some kind of dirty social disease.  You know, the kind that makes your privates shrivel up, turn green, and that’s only if you’re lucky.

Still, everything in moderation is the way to go, so here are some cookies. One a day makes the blues go way.

Two a day will make me go away.

Make your choice, Jack.

6.  ENGLISH:  Do these jeans make my butt look big?

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION: Sizes are like opinions.  They vary greatly depending where you go, and they all leave you feeling like you’re going to explode.

In this case, I feel like there’s going to be an ass explosion. I’m not about to share my size with you, Nosebox McGee, but let’s just say I’ve always fit in the same number except for today, as I tried a new boutique where apparently it’s the company creedo that everyone should have an ass flatter than everyone thought the pre-Columbus world was.

I can tell you’re burning a hole in the back of my jeans with your lustful eyes, because like bathroom cleanliness, subtlety has never been your strong suit.

So make like a tipped over milk carton and spill, Jack. Is it round like a candy apple or does it look like it’s got its own gravitational pull?

5.  ENGLISH: You forgot my birthday, jerk.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION:  Time. Oh how that relentless son of a bitch enjoys teasing me. Taunting me. Yanking days off the calendar of my life with reckless abandon, leaving me with little more than fuzzy memories of cheap men and even cheaper vodka.

Eighteen.  Twenty-one. All the best birthdays are gone now.  What’s left to celebrate to celebrate now other than being one year closer to shaking hands with Mr. Grim Reaper himself?

Now there’s a celebrity whose autograph you don’t want.

Still, it’s perfectly normal for anyone with a pulse to feel a burning desire to be remembered. In the end, when all is said and done, when the last clump of dirt is heaped on our graves and the undertaker collects his due, all we are to the people we leave behind is the sum total of the memories they carry with them in their minds.

And apparently, my fella isn’t carrying many thought drops about me in his brain bucket.

I saw a bum shivering on a park bench this morning.  Cold. Alone. Forgotten. Cared for by no one.

Whenever my man screws up like this, it’s hard not to see myself as ending up just ike that lowdown vagrant one day.

Cold. Alone. Forgotten.  Cared for by no one.

Thanks a lot, Jack.

4.  ENGLISH: Let’s move in together.

TRANSLATION:  Space. I have it. You have it. Who needs it? Let’s live in the now and share the cow.  My milk. Your milk.  Who cares whose gullet it goes down when it all comes out yellow anyway?

Splitting digs is always a big step in any relationship.  And sure, it might turn out to be the step that lands our feet on an emotional land mine that blows our psyches to kingdom come.

Then again, it could also be the step that leads us to the American Dream.  A nice house with a front yard, a white picket fence, three kids, a dog, and our very own shared subscription to Better Homes and Gardens.

Mull it over, palooka. For as Custer said on the way to his last stand, “What’s the worst that could happen?”

3.  ENGLISH: I forgive you for (whatever dumb thing you did recently.)

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION: They say love is blind but in my case, she must have had her eyes gouged out with rusty razors because despite all the strike marks you’ve got against you, you’re still aces in my book, bub.

2.  ENGLISH: We should get married.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION:  Here we are, two dopes stuck on a big blue marble, our lives as insignificant as a couple of ants to the shoe of a random passerby.

Call me naive. Call me crazy. Call me late for dinner but I love ya, ya big lug. There, I said it. Write it down, rubber stamp it, set it in a frame and hang it on the wall for the whole world to see.

Sure, we could end up crashing in flames like the Hindenburg but we might just circumnavigate the globe like Lucky Lindy. We’ll never know until we flap our wings and take that leap.

There’s no one I’d like to take that leap with more than you, see?

  1.  ENGLISH: I think we should break up.

FILM NOIR TRANSLATION: Alright, buster. Clean the wax out of your ears and listen up.

You and I are over. We’re done. Kaput.  It’s like seeing the final credits roll at the end of a three hour Judd Apatow film. I feel depressed that I wasted my time yet elated that this bullshit is finally out of my life now.

Take a long walk off a short pier, palooka.  Dumpsville just held an election and you’re the Mayor, the Alderman, and the dog catcher all rolled into one.

Aww, pipe down with the waterworks, see?  Like my Aunt Edna’s underpants, a crying man is a sight no one wants to see.

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