Saturday, October 31, 2009

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 12

This one is dedicated to Jason (the commenter).

NEIL DIAMOND ROCKS!!!1!!!!!1!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You will find this same enthralling video right here all embiggenated. I highly recommend clicking so you can fully appreciate the fine details. The suspender snapping, alone, is worth it.

Maybe someday I'll get around to blogging about the brief time I spent taking ballet lessons. Until then, you can spend a tiny moment or two of your fulsome life right here. Ouch!!!

Unexpected Bodily Expulsions # 8

When I was a little kid, I got sick and my mom took me to the doctor. He used one of those wooden tongue depressors to look down my throat.

That made me cough and gag at the exact same time. It was like a little explosion in the back of my throat and a fusillade of these little white spongy things came flying out of my mouth and they hit the doctor right in his face.

I saw it all in slow-motion and I could actually see some of them bouncing off poor Dr. Stein’s forehead and a few of them stuck to his glasses. Even at my tender age, I thought he comported himself with a tremendous amount of personal dignity and that admiration has not faded, even to this very day.

MOM: “Oh my Dear Lord, I’m so very sorry, Dr. Stein!”

DR. STEIN: “Your son has tonsillitis.”

And then he very calmly took out his handkerchief, wiped his face and then he cleaned off his glasses.

Me? I just sat there on the examination table feeling like I was going to die. And I wondered if maybe Dr. Stein wasn’t living a double life and that he was really a rocket ship test pilot, professional football player and secret agent, all rolled into one -- a real life hero.

Friday, October 30, 2009

We Report. You Decide.

I just felt something tickle in my right ear and then it felt like something was working its way to the outside.

So I reached in and pulled out an orangey-brown pellet of ear wax about the size of a pea.

It smelled funny so I didn’t taste it.

But, yeah, I was a little curious.

Intertubes Confessional # 5

I didn’t shave this morning and my secretary noticed and she asked why and I told her that I overslept but that was a lie because I simply forgot because I broke out of my normal bathroom routine this morning because I finally decided that enough is enough and I used the dog’s mat breaker to comb out the impenetrable jungle thicket that had formed between my ass cheeks and I wasn’t about to volunteer that information and tell her that I would have used a machete if only I had one handy even though doing so would have posed a considerable risk since it can be hard sometimes to see the forest for the trees.

Let's Go Exploring . . . In Real Time!

How about an adventure? Here’s what I’m going to do. I’ve got a hardcopy of a judicial opinion on my desk. It’s stapled and folded back to somewhere in the middle. From the right-hand column, from the first full paragraph, I’m going to take the second word. Then, from the second paragraph, I’ll take the third word, and so on, until I get to the bottom.

Then I’ll Google the result and I’ll link to the hit that is one more than the number of search terms.

Ready? Let’s go!

<< it . . . versus . . . ratify . . . Atlantic >>

Here is the Google results list.

And here is the result one greater than four.

Okay, I lied . . . so sue me.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Found Scribbled on the Back of an Envelope

THIS sounds like a job for . . .
Nonsense Rhyme Cheerleader Man!!!
(A copyrighted feature of this blog):

Kitty cat, butter fat, Simoniz® a car.
Sow an oat, Float a boat, drink a glass of tar.

Gooooooooooooo TEAM!!!

Random Movie Lines # 31

"Hyman Roth always makes money for his partners. One by one, our old friends are gone; death (natural or not), prison, deported. Hyman Roth is the only one left because he always made money for his partners."

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Penumbral Emanations

This cartoon is by the tremendously talented John Caldwell, one of my absolute all-time favorites.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 11

Thunder Blender # 17

(1) Baby bump

(2) Significant other

(3) 192.5 pounds

(4) "Man Bites Man"

(5) Mirror --> Decision --> Ostrich --> Saul Steinberg

(6) "The Disturbing Case of the Formidable Vagina"

(7) William F. George

(8) Walnut vernacular spectacular

(9) Ticky bugs timepieces of eighteen wheeler

(10) Every inch of my love

Monday, October 26, 2009

Unspeakable Visions of the Individual # 6

The theme song to “Curb Your Enthusiasm” morphs seamlessly into “A Man and a Woman” in my miiiiiiiiiiiiind!!!!1!!!!!1!!!!

You don't say!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Modest Tribute to Ben-Hur Gazzara

It was here that Althouse said she found “The Killing of a Chinese Bookie” to be a boring movie. I can see where she’s coming from. The pacing was designed to more closely approximate that of real life and if you don’t find Ben Gazzara’s portrayal engrossing, then there’s not much else to hold your attention. If you don’t like watching a baseball game from the stands then skip this one. There is no chariot race.

But Mrs. Bissage and I both thought it was a really good movie. I liked how Mr. Gazzara played an earthy guy who was, at first blush, a scuzzball but who was actually a gentleman. He’s no wimp, but he gets into trouble with the mob because he is naïve in how he lives his seedy life and in how he runs his sleazy business.

What’s his business? Well, it’s a smallish nightclub, and patrons come for the topless burlesque show. It occurred to me from time to time that some of the T & A in the movie was gratuitous. But it worked overall because it showed that Mr. Gazzara’s character was rather ordinary as neither a letch nor a saint.

And maybe that’s what I liked most about “The Killing of a Chinese Bookie” and “A Woman Under the Influence.” They run counter to those movie conventions we’re all so very used to like the hunky Charlton Heston enunciating with his booming stage voice and pantomiming his emotions for the back of the house. That clichéd showbiz command for actors to MAKE-IT-BIG holds no validity and the command is instead to “lose the cornball.” The result is an inverse kind of cinema, a negative kind of cinema, where you have to understand the situation to fully appreciate what IS NOT being said and done.

Consistent with this, the movie ends with a life-or-death struggle that has no resolution and I’m a real sucker for that sort of thing. After all, reality is the stuff of fiction.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Bissage Says Relax

My Apologies

I would be posting more often except I am suffering from mid-life crisis and have become overwhelmed by indecision.

The good news is I have it narrowed down to: (1) becoming a civil war reenactor or (2) starting up an aquarium for fancy goldfish.

Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp or what's a heaven for?


Monday, October 19, 2009

Morning's Delight

Yesterday I enjoyed a great big heaping breakfast bowl of oatmeal. It was the first of the cold weather season.

Then there was dinnertime’s liberal application of Tabasco sauce.

Afterwards, I consumed a couple of Fig Newtons while watching the Phillies clobber the Dodgers.

A troublesome night’s sleep, some nightmares, and then today’s breakfast of shredded wheat.

That would bring us up to the present, except for that tumultuous event that occurred between the shredded wheat and the time I finally got to sit down at the computer to type this out.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bissage Learns to Dress Himself

This post at Sippican Cottage, caused me to write what follows:

I was a high school kid back in the 1970s. There was this kiosk at the mall where you bought a tee-shirt and they’d use an iron to put a rubbery decal on it. I picked one that purported to have something to do with the current Rolling Stones world tour. It was a flying eagle with jet engines under its wings and I thought it looked pretty cool.

That tee-shirt was something I could barely afford and I certainly didn’t have the money to go to a Rolling Stones concert. After a handful of wearings, I finally decided I was acting like a phony. Besides, the picture was starting to seem kind of dumb and it was peeling off, anyway.

The biggest problem, though, was the tee-shirt, itself. It was too tight and it had really small arm holes and I’d get these enormous, dark, smelly, pit stains under my arms the size of dinner plates. I existed in a clingy state of perpetual dampness. I had become a human swamp.

So it turned out I’d wasted money, which stung. But I learned a valuable lesson and there was a bright side. At least I didn’t splurge at that mall kiosk and buy the Rolling Stones world tour underpants.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 10

Cartoon by Christopher Browne

Some Saturday Morning Unpleasantness

Because of this post at the wonderfully wide-ranging Althouse, I got curious about the films of John Cassavetes. Last night, Mrs. Bissage and I watched “A Woman Under the Influence” (1974).

It was maybe a little bit too long (2 ½ hours) and it is not for everyone. By that I mean . . . well, what am I trying to say? Well, I'm not quite sure. How about this: You know how they say people eat hot chiles or go bungie jumping or rock climbing and stuff because they need to experience a more primal and dangerous world? They get a buzz from the danger?

Well, you can watch "A Woman Under the Influence" for pretty much the same effect. I got the following from Wikipedia:
When Richard Dreyfuss appeared on “The Mike Douglas Show” with Peter Falk, he described the film as “the most incredible, disturbing, scary, brilliant, dark, sad, depressing movie” and added, “I went crazy. I went home and vomited,” which prompted curious audiences to seek out the film capable of making Dreyfuss ill.
Now, it’s pretty much a cliché for actors to say things like that – and a lot of ordinary people get turned off by that sort of crafty boast – but that’s not too far off the mark, IMHO. If you grew up in an emotionally chaotic, fucked-up family, you’ll relate to the movie probably too much. Maybe it'll work out the same even if you didn't.

In the scene that follows, run-of-the-mill housewife Gena Rowlands has just come home from a psychiatric hospital and her family is having a little get-together. It goes badly. Peter Falk is her husband. The guy with the glasses and the slicked back hair is the physician who committed her (a lovely scene, that) and the guy at the end of the table is her asswipe of a father. The kind, but weak, lady is her mother.

Everyone is packing her in too tight and she can't breathe. Feel the claustrophobia. Feel the selfishness. Feel the utter cluelessness. Feel the dysfuntion, the desperation, and the way some invisible but tremendous force -- beyond anyone’s control -- crashes people together, and then hurls them apart, again and again and again.

As I said before, it’s unpleasant. You have to be fairly serious about cinema and willing to take a risk to seek this stuff out. Personally, I recommend you don’t click on the link. Here it is, anyway.

P.S. We watched the Criterion documentary on Cassavetes' maybe a week ago. It was unhelpful. We eventually shut it off because it was little more than a parade of interviews with actors saying how much Cassavetes' work was all about LOVE. Well, it took me a long time to figure out what those actors were all talking about. That force I mentioned a second ago? That force that crashes people into each other and then tears them apart? Actors call that LOVE. And that's pretty much why I got out of "THE THEATER."

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Paying It Forward

There are people who make this world a much more interesting place.

You seldom get to know anything at all about these people or what they do; the problem being largely a matter of time and space.

But now there's the internet, so things are getting better.


Dig it.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Our Affair was a Bust

The photograph is by Diane Keaton. It is Plate IX from her book "Reservations." It is entitled "The Doral Hotel on the Ocean, Miami Beach."

A Morning's Lament

Today’s breakfast was a crappy supermarket bagel with crappy unsalted butter and crappy orange marmalade. It all got washed down with an imperial pint of diet Dr. Pepper, which tastes pretty crappy.

My stomach is a toxic waste dump.

I oughta be shot.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Be Gone, Foul Temptress!!1!!!1!!!!!!!!

Same as all of us enpenised individuals, we know he struggled valiently to maintain his virtue but . . .Oh, I know that she . . . has made a fool of him . . . like girls have done so many nights before . . . time and time again.

There's gonna be no dancing when they get home.

And remember people, you can't spell Cynthia without a little sin.

Time Flies Like an Arrow

And fruit flies like a banana. Good grief. Here it is Tuesday and my last post was last Friday. Whodathunkit?

I've still got nothing to say -- and I've already used a Beatles song to say that -- so let's go in another direction.Wait. Maybe I have something to say, after all.

Over at Althouse, there are sometimes blog posts that generate comments along the lines of "women are like this" or "men are like that."

Such generalizations need to be taken with a grain of salt.

Better they should be set to music.

Friday, October 09, 2009

For Science!!!

I have been conducting a scientific survey, so please let me begin this blog post with some actual survey responses from some actual survey respondents:

(1) “You idiot! You’ve really gone and done it this time.”
-- Mrs. Bissage

(2) “What the hell is wrong with you? Get that thing away from me!”
-- One of the women in Mrs. Bissage’s book club

(3) “Pull up your pants right now, you freak, or I swear to God I’ll call the cops!”
-- Some lady in a parking lot trying to put groceries in her car

Yes, my internet friends, as you have already surely surmised, I have been field-testing the results of my homemade penis ointment. Those 100% accurate quotes, set out above, prove beyond all reasonable doubt that I am well on my way to a Nobel Prize® in Chemistry.

You will all be pleased to hear that my dong has grown a full four inches in length (as well as four inches in girth!), and that it is now a frightening mottle of pink, white, greenish-blue and red. There are barbed spines as well as an array of bony, scale-like plates.

There has been some cracking and bleeding, and I wish I could get the thing to go back down so I can pee, but hey, who needs to consume liquids, anyway? And besides, the tailor has already altered all my business suits.

What matters most is that I am in proud possession of what is, incontestably, one of the world's great, supernaturally impressive, rock hard boners!

And that's what I call WINNING!!!1!!!1!!

Here’s some background, in case you think I am just making all this up.

Nobel prize committee, here we come!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

One for [R]icpic

THIS sounds like a job for . . .
Nonsense Rhyme Cheerleader Man!!!
(a copyrighted feature of this blog):

Dopamine, Soft Machine, core aerate your lawn.
Wooden knob, get a job, lip sync “Delta Dawn.”

Gooooooooooooo TEAM!

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

My Burning Ring of Fire

Last night we watched the movie “Walk the Line.” It was about Johnny Cash and it was pretty bad -- one big show biz biopic cliché after another. Most of it was “Behind the Music” on VH1 without the redemptive self-parody. Bland, bland, bland. Mr. Cash’s estate must have had creative control with an eye toward marketing products like Folsom Prison Blue Jeans and Orange Blossom Special Air Freshener.

Joaquin Phoenix does a good enough job. But a lot of that seems to be the result of his spending weeks in the bathroom, drunk out of his mind, making slack-jawed scowls at himself in the mirror, repeating out loud, over and over again, “Hello, I’m Johnny Cash.”

Don’t get me started on Reese Witherspoon. Who knew June Carter was a reticent ditz in need of a chaperone? In all fairness to Ms. Witherspoon, I can’t blame her for fouling up the sex scene. Johnny Cash must have been hung like a bear.

Anyway, I hate to be a poop head, so let me say something nice. Some of the movie was okay. For example, I liked the “Man in Black” sequence. That was where they were driving in a car and it turns into a high tech rocket car and they play Elvis Presley while driving all over the ceiling of the Holland tunnel. “Elvis is not dead. He just went home.” Ha! That was great.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 9

Where is Everybody?

The place is here. The time is now. And the journey into the shadows that we're about to watch could be our journey.
You see, we can feed the stomach with concentrates. We can supply microfilm for reading, recreation, even movies of a sort. We can pump oxygen in and waste material out.

But there's one thing we can't simulate that's a very basic need: Man's hunger for companionship. The barrier of loneliness. That's one thing we haven't licked yet.
So whoever you are -- out there in the real world -- reading this blog entry, I hope you are never too lonely.

I also hope you are a fan of the old "The Twilight Zone."

It turned 50 years old, today.