Friday, November 14, 2008

We got to throw down the low down up in this hoe down, Torn Slatterns and Nugget Ranchers

Working title
Plans are underway to make a “Sex and the City” sequel; the girls are getting up there, the working title of the next “Sex and the City”? “Hot flashes in the Suburbs.”

Too bad
Starbucks reports its profits are down 97% from last year; it is so bad here in L.A., they closed the Wilshire Starbucks that opened inside of another Wilshire Starbucks.

On MSNBC Joe Scarborough dropped a live F-bomb on the air; it’s the biggest F-bomb dropped since Britney Spears dumped Kevin Federline.

How bad is it?
This economy is rough. In Bel Air, a hot divorce’ actually made her pool boy clean her pool.

This economy is rough. In Hollywood, a producer had to fire his personal tooth brusher.

The economy is rough. In Malibu, a rap star had to fire his personal bling polisher.

The economy is rough. In Encino, a porn star had to fire his fluffer’s personal assistant.

The economy is rough. In Century City, an entertainment attorney could only afford a Costco coffin to sleep in during the day.

The economy is rough. In Marina Del Ray, an aging swinger could only afford a polyester toupee.

The economy is rough. In New York, Donald Trump had to fire the personal trainer of that thing on his head.

The economy is rough. Matthew McConaughey lost the shirt he wasn’t wearing in the stock market.

Ouch, so mean
Barack Obama is trying to figure out what kind of dog to get. Many suggest he should get a female dog, but Barack said; “Nah, if I wanted a bitch I’d have selected Hillary as my VP.”

Since you asked:
One thing that made a lasting impact on me this year was Alcatraz. Although I’ve been to San Francisco many times (No city has better smells: it is a heady mix of burning cable car brakes, sea air fog, boiling shrimp, sourdough bread and the dried fish and firecracker smell of Chinatown) and I love San Francisco, but it never occurred that going to Alcatraz was worth doing. But then, on a trip to a soccer tournament this summer, a bunch of parents wanted to go with our kids. So I said what the hell?

Alcatraz is wild. Go.

First of all you take a boat – as you can imagine, I over did the “hopping on a ferry in San Francisco” jokes – the boat trip is cool enough itself. It gives you an amazing view of San Francisco. It is mind boggling to imagine being a prisoner on that same short voyage. And these just weren’t any prisoners. There is a sign that says something to the effect: “If you go bad in society, you go to prison. If you go bad in prison, you go to Alcatraz.”

Al Capone made a big impact along with “Machine Gun” Kelly and “Baby Face” Nelson. And did you know the birdman of Alcatraz didn’t have any birds? And, from what I read in his biography, he was a genius – spoke five languages – and was, quite possibly, the most irritating personality that ever lived. Capone just killed people. This guy was agitating.

The buildings are kept up enough just to look decrepit. You know how I claim cities have their prime era indelibly marked on them? LA? The fifties. New York? The forties. Chicago? The roaring thirties. San Francisco? The early 1900’s.

Well Alcatraz has the early fifties stamped on so much you feel like you went back in time. Plus, as you take the tour you see pictures from the forties and fifties and you hear voices of prisoners and guards who use the expressions and slang of the fifties. “Say, who’s that hip cat, see?”

As I have more than my share of claustrophobia, standing in one of the solitary confinement cells was more than I could stand for one minute. I would not make it one day of the thirty or so they were sentenced.

There was one truly sweet moment on the prison tour when my angelic daughter Ann Caroline –who was just in front of me as she had excitedly started her audio tour tape a good ten seconds before me – A.C.’s eyes suddenly lit up and she smiled the happiest smile and chuckle you’ve ever seen and she looked right over at me with great affection and, my tape being ten seconds behind, I didn’t know why.

It turned out to be a guy playing the harmonica in his cell.

It made me all at once happy, proud and very sad to think, when I am gone –knock on wood, not for a long time – that my daughter might get really, really sad when she hears a harmonica.

But eventually it will make her happy again.

It was soon after that heartwarming/breaking moment when the tape featured one of the former prisoners talking about being called to the visitor’s room. He saw a pretty young women and wondered who it was. Turned out to be his daughter whom he hadn’t seen since she was a baby.

The thought of that was more than I could take. Far worse than the cell. Who would have thought visiting a notorious men’s prison would turn into a love letter to your family?

Maybe I won’t be so hard on A.C. the next time she is late coming out of school or forgets to tie her shoelace.

P.S. Just saw Russell Brand on “LSWDL” and that guy is nuts. Funny, but nuts. What is the deal with those hip Brits like him and David Beckham and the naked chef guy - and pronouncing Th? They pronounce th as an F. So thirty three if firty free. They sound like gay three-year-olds.