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ABC spent an full hour of primetime talking to [Michael and Lisa Marie Jackson]. Why does something completely inane like that fascinate us? Our culture has gone from GE College Bowl to the guy on Wheel of Fortune who asks, "Is there an ‘F,’ as in pharoh?" Is intelligence a liability nowadays? I think we can answer that with one word: "Duh!" America has never been what you would call highbrow, but these days it seems our collective cranial ridge is sloping like the shoulders of the bar boy at the Kennedy compound.

Now, I don’t want to get off on a rant here, but we live in an era and a time where calling someone an Einstein is considered to be somewhat of an insult. Morons are out there in force making left-hand turns from right-hand lanes, trying to pay for drive-thru tacos with a fucking check, calling 411 to get the number for information, and in most of our fine metropoli, the reposed "Fuck off!" will get you a seat at the local Algonquin round table. What happened? I’ll tell you what happened.

First and foremost, as a matter of fact, numbers 1, 2, and . . . what come after 2, we didn’t pay enough attention to our education system. We gotta stop paying teachers like the kid who delivers grit! For Christ’s sake, these are the people who will lead us and our children into the century and they can’t even afford real Yodels, okay? They have to get those 144 count price-club steamer trunk size of Little Debby’s, the equivalent.

High school kids are entering the job market with an education that barely qualifies them to run the Tilt-A-Whirl at the traveling carnival. Even those fortunate enough to graduate from Ivy-League schools, well, they go to write movie scripts about, guess what . . . stupid people.

And that brings us to our next reason. Let’s face facts, the TV beast ate us whole quicker than a dog on a Dreamsicle, all right? Most talk shows are bimbomercials. Connie Chung actually hosted a network news show for a year, and many sitcoms need two longshoremen with a pipe wrench to twist the canned laughter dial. Bright people whom I really used to respect now stay home to watch "Beverly Hills, 90210." Why bother? You just know that every week Brandon and Dillon are gonna let Kelly jerk ‘em around for a while and Dawn and Ray are gonna be having yet another abusive spat at the Peach, but, oh, I hate Ray!! T.V. producers say Americans enjoy the stupid shit. But, hey, it’s the same reason Eskimos enjoy blubber; it’s the only fucking thing available at the Arctic buffet, okay? Pop culture has turned the brain into the body’s new appendix; no real function and it could quite possible blow up and kill you. As organs go, you just don’t need your brain anymore. As a matter of fact, I’m certain in the very near future people will go to the hospital, or should I say, turn on the hospital channel, and get their brain taken out just as a precaution.

Indeed, in the business of television brightness can often be taken from you and used as a semitarn to cleave your occupational head off. Our guest tonight, Jon Stewart, ran a pretty tight, and might I add, pretty intelligent little Keebler tree over there till it was chopped down last week. Now there are many reasons for the cancellation of a television show. I’m pretty sure Jon will tell you that the copability flow chart on the demise of his show read like the genealogy of the kid on the porch in "Deliverance." But, I’m reasonable sure it had something to do with Jon use of words like "genealogy," which I think most Americans believe to be when Barbara Eden visits her OB-GYN.

America, we are at a fork in the road. To the left you’ve got books, and to the right, the never-ending horizon of the new technology. I, myself, am taking a hard left because if they talk you into hanging that rico, the new technology is only gonna make it worse. Now they tell you it’s gonna make it better, but if you notice the voice they tell you that in is always the computer generated one and it’s digitally synthesized too. That means less expected from us, less striving, less brainwork, more stupid, and eventually the king will be the one who just doesn’t shit himself. You know, our reliance on technology is making us soft and if we’re not careful it will only get worse.

Scientists estimate that by the end of this century, via the means of Virtual Reality, a man will be able to assimilate making love to any women he wants to through his television set. You know, folks, the day an unemployed ironworker can lay in his Bark-a-lounger with a Fosters in one hand and a channel flicker in the other and fuck Claudia Schiffer for \$19.95, it’s gonna make crack look like Sanka, all right?!

Of course, that’s just my opinion. I could be wrong.


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