Tag Archives: every simpsons ever

The Poet’s Battle – “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night”

If you caught the Every Simpsons Ever Marathon on FXX, you might have seen the episode where Grandpa Simpson laments that “Death Stalks You at Every Turn.”   He then mistakes everyone from Maggie to the family dog for being the Grim Specter of Death.

It is something I try my best to not think about, but the sad reality of life is that it is limited.  If life went on forever, people would probably be a lot happier.  Haven’t accomplished your dreams yet?  Don’t worry, you have unlimited time.  Except, the truth is, you really don’t.  The epic struggle of chasing your dreams vs. finding any job that will pay the bills so you can survive is something we all face and can often lead to regrets at the end of life when the latter inevitably wins out.

Several years ago, I was the caretaker of a dying parent.  The experience left me with a negative view of our hospital system.  Once they declare an old person to be a goner, doctors tend to act like you’re wasting their time if you ask followup questions to the effect of “What if we try this?”  or “What if we try that?”  They say it delicately, but they essentially let you know that your loved one is old and this is what happens to old people so get over it.

Like the setting of the sun and the rising of the moon, death is a natural part of life and yet, I don’t know about you, but I’ll never get over it.  There are many parts of life that are difficult.  But then – sometimes I see a nice sight – like a river, or a mountain, or just a nice sunny day and it makes me sad that all that is great in the world is dangled in front of me and yet one day I’ll have to let it go.  Even worse, the complexities and difficulties of everyday life will probably keep me from experiencing most of what’s out there.

Here’s what one poet told his dying father:



Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at the close of day;

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


Though wise men at their end know dark is right,

Because their words had forked no lightning they

Do not go gentle into that good night.


Good men, the last wavy by, crying how bright

Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


Wild men who caught and sand the sun in flight,

And learn, too late, the grieved it on its way,

Do not go gentle into that good night.


Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight

Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


And you, my father, there on the sad height,

Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.

Do not go gentle into that good night.

Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


Ironically, Dylan Thomas died at the age of 39, only two years after his father died.  It has been said that the poet may have succumbed to alcohol poisoning.  I suppose one could argue that turning to alcohol to cope is the very definition of giving in to the dying of the light, though I don’t presume to know or understand what Thomas was going through.  In any event, it is good advice.  Life is limited but take care of yourself and try to stick around as long as you can anyway.  It always bugged me when doctors shrugged off questions about my mother.  I get that to them the questions were obviously answered by a “No, that’s not going to save her” – i.e. they were simple to the point that they felt bothered that they were even asked, but they need to be asked anyway.  Struggle against the dying of the light, because whether that struggle buys you five more minutes or five more years, you’re still in the light.

Don’t forget – this advice can be applied to anything.  Having a hard time at work?  Don’t give up, fight to do better.  Upset over some situation?  Don’t throw in the towel, try to fix the problem.  Whatever the light i.e. all that is good disappears, you’re in the dark and that’s it, so fight to have that goodness in your life for as long as you can.

What choice do you have?  The alternative is to be left in the dark.

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1,000 Twitter Followers in Three Months!

How diddly doodly blogarinos!  (Sorry, been watching a lot of the Every Simpsons Ever Marathon).

Forgive a bit of shameless self-promotion here.

Something awesome happened tonight – my Twitter feed reached 1,000 followers.  Since I only started blogging/tweeting in earnest in June, I’d say that’s pretty fantastic.

Can we make it to 2,500 by Christmas?  Then there would be even more people following the booktastic goodness.

If you’re on Twitter, feel free to follow me @bookshelfbattle

It’s been a great ride so far – tossing in books, literature, writing, and pop culture into one giant blender and pressing puree!

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Lyrics to Tito Puente’s Senor Burns

As a comedy aficionado, I am really enjoying the “Every Simpsons Ever” Marathon on FXX. One of my favorite songs from the show is Tito Puente’s “Senor Burns.” The Setup – in the “Who Shot Mr. Burns?” episodes, oil is discovered at Springfield Elementary School, causing Principal Skinner to spend lavishly, including hiring Tito Puente as the school music teacher. But, when Mr. Burns blocks out the sun to force everyone to buy more energy from his nuclear power plant, everyone in town has a grudge against Mr. Burns, as well as a motive to shoot him. Tito is cleared as a suspect when it is learned that he chose to get his revenge on Mr. Burns, not with violence but through an insulting salsa song:

Wounds won’t last long, but an insulting song
Burns will always carry with him.
So I’ll settle my score, on the salsa floor
with this vengeful Latin rhythm.
Burns! Con el corazon de perro!
Senor Burns! El diablo con dinero!
It may not surprise you, but all of us despise you.
Please die and fry. In hell, you rotten
rich old wretch!
Adios viejo!

By the way, my Spanish is rusty but I believe the palabras en espanol translate roughly into “Burns you have the heart of a dog!” and “Mr. Burns you’re the devil with money!”

Literally, with no exaggeration, every few years, I’ll catch this episode on TV and end up singing the song for at least a year after. I haven’t even caught the episode on the marathon but it popped into my head and I can’t stop singing it.

Random thought – Are they going to show the Simpons Movie? They can’t really call it “Every Simpsons Ever” if they don’t show the Simpsons Movie, can they?

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Hi I’m Troy McClure…

…and you might remember me from such book blogs as “Bookshelfbattle.com” and “Return to the Valley of Bookshelfbattle.com!”

In honor of the Simpsons Marathon on FXX, “Every Simpsons Ever!” I’m posting the following filmography of everyone’s favorite Hollywood hack, Troy McClure. Voiced by the late, great Phil Hartman, the character was a mockery of celebrities who have fallen from stardom and are forced to take part in lame projects they view as beneath them. In Troy’s case, he was always featured in some movie, film, TV special that was incorporated into the Simpsons’ plot and he’d introduce himself by saying, “Hi I’m Troy McClure! You might remember me from such films as…” and then he’d go on to list two hilariously titled films.

Without further ado:

Hi! I’m Troy McClure! You might remember me from…

1) …such films as “Today We Kill, Tomorrow We Die” and “Gladys the Groovy Mule.”

2)…such educational films as “Smoke Yourself Thin!” and “Get Some Confidence, Stupid!”

3) …such films as “The Greatest Story Ever Hula-ed” and “They Came to Burgle Carnegie Hall!”

4) …such driver education films as “Alice’s Adventures through the Windshield Glass” and “The Decapitation of Larry Leadfoot.”

5) …such cartoons as “Christmas Ape” and “Christmas Ape Goes to Summer Camp”

6) …such educational films as “Lead Paint: Delicious But Deadly” and “Here Comes the Metric System!”

7) …such Fox Network Specials as “Alien Nose Job” and “The Five Fabulous Weeks of the Chevy Chase Show!”

8) …such telethons as “Out with Gout 88” and “Let’s Save Tony Orlando’s House”

9) …such films as “P is for Psycho” and “The President’s Neck is Missing”

10) …such TV spinoffs as “Son of Sanford and Son” and “After Mannix.”

There’s plenty more where that came from. What’s your favorite Troy McClure movie title? Or, for that matter, what’s your favorite Simpsons quote?

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