Friday, January 09, 2015

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D’oh! A Long Overdue Simpsons Quiz

How is this even possible? I was chatting on the phone today with Miss Lucy, the Queen of Atomic, when we discovered that we are both fans of The Simpsons. Miss Lucy said she had taken some of my oh-so-popular quizzes but didn’t remember the Simpsons one. I told her I’d send it off to her right away.

Well, I searched through all 1400 of these damn things and guess what? No Simpsons quiz. To be sure there were quizzes dealing with all of my other favorite things, like the Beatles, Howard Stern and at least three on Seinfeld, but somehow the Simpson got overlooked.

And so tonight we correct this egregious oversight. After all, I’m only here to please my readers, and if that reader happens to be a young woman so much the better. So without any further delay allow me to present my very first Simpsons quiz. This one, of course, goes out to Miss Lucy. And after this build-up I’m expecting a score of nothing less than a 90%, young lady.

  1. Which one is not a Simpsons character?
      a. Sideshow Mel
      b. Lunchlady Doris
      c. Air Force Amy
      d. Bumblebee Man

  1. What is Apu’s last name?
      a. Nahasapeemapetilon
      b. Nehpassapaatem
      c. Nupatahemisutt
      d. Smith

  1. Which character is still alive?
      a. Maude Flanders
      b. Bleeding Gums Murphy
      c. Fat Tony
      d. Dr. Marvin Monroe

  1. What breed of dog is Santa’s Little Helper?
      a. Dachshund
      b. English Terrier
      c. Bulldog
      d. Greyhound

  1. How many eyes did the mutated fish have?
      a. One
      b. Two
    c. Three
    d. Four

  1. What is Lenny’s last name?
      a. Carlson
      b. Leonard
      c. LaRue
      d. It’s never given

  1. Which one is not a schoolyard bully?
      a. Jimbo
      b. Kearney
      c. Rags
      d. Dolph

  1. Which character is based on Mike Tyson?
      a. Duffman
      b. Dreaderick Tatum
      c. Kirk Van Houten
      d. Ranier Wolfcastle

  1. On which program did the Simpsons originally appear?
      a. The Carol Burnett Show
      b. The Tracey Ullman Show
      c. The Tony Randall Show
      d. The David Letterman Show

  1. What are Itchy and Scratchy?
      a. A cat and mouse
      b. A dog and cat
      c. Two cats
      d. Two dogs


  1. AIR FORCE AMY is not a character on The Simpsons.  She is, however, a real-life prostitute on one of those filthy HBO programs. And if you knew that you should be ashamed of yourself. (Me? Oh, I just heard about her somewhere. Ahem.)
  2. Apu’s last name is NAHASAPEEMAPETILON, and thank God for copy and paste.
  3. Of that quartet only FAT TONY still survives.
  4. Santa’s Little Helper is a GREYHOUND who lost his last race on Christmas Eve, causing Homer to remark, “He’s a Simpson.”
  5. The mutated fish who swam a little too close to the nuclear power plant had THREE eyes.
  6. Lenny’s last name is LEONARD, which is a pretty strange last name. Kind of a strange first one too, now that I think of it.
  7. There is no Simpsons character named RAGS, bully or otherwise.
  8. DREADERICK TATUM  is based on Tyson. He once said of his hometown of Springfield: “That town is a dump. If you ever see me back there again you’ll know I f&*$#d up pretty bad.”
  9. The Simpson family first appeared on THE TRACEY ULLMAN SHOW on April 19, 1987. Ullman later sued the program, claiming that at least part if its success was due to it having appeared on her show. The judge is still laughing.
  10.  Well of course you knew that Itchy and Scratchy are a cat and a mouse. Ah, but          which is which?   

So how did you all do? How about you, Miss Lucy, did you get at least nine correct? If not, you got some splainin’ to do!

Monday, January 05, 2015

While My Guitar…

Is it possible that you, the staunchest and most loyal of Beatle fans, could ever imagine a circumstance where an iconic trophy of no less prestige than a guitar that had been autographed by George Harrison is purposely destroyed, and you actually support and even cheer this action? Hold on, don't answer too quickly. First you must hear the story, and then you can decide. Sound fair? Okay then, listen up:

George Harrison died of lung cancer on November 29, 2001. A legal complaint was filed shortly after on behalf of his estate, claiming that Dr. Gilbert Lederman, a radiation oncologist, had sometimes brought along his family while visiting the dying Harrison. On one occasion the family began to sing, forcing the former Beatle to gasp, "Please stop talking." The complaint also alleges that later Lederman had his 12 year old son play guitar for the captive Harrison, after which he asked him to autograph the guitar.

"I do not even know if I know how to sign my name anymore," pleaded Harrison.

The complaint claims that Dr. Lederman then picked up Harrison's hand and guided it, saying "Come on, George, you can do this. G-E-O..."

The suit was eventually settled out of court. One of the stipulations was that the guitar that Harrison had been forced to sign must be "disposed of." How the guitar was destroyed has never been made clear, but I'm sure you'll now agree that getting rid of the musical instrument that surely would have become known as "George Harrison's Death Guitar" was the proper thing to do.

Or perhaps not. Maybe the guitar should have instead been preserved and hung on a wall, with Harrison's shaky signature serving as a stark and cruel reminder to us all that people, and especially sick and dying people, should be treated with kindness and dignity. And even better, instead of the guitar, maybe it should have been the callous Dr. Lederman himself who should have been disposed of. 

With kindness and dignity, of course.  

Sunday, January 04, 2015

New Year. Same Old.

As you get older you develop an instinct for these things. Or at least I did. Or maybe I’m just that much more perceptive than you. Yeah, that’s probably it.

We were watching (and I hesitate to admit this but I have to write about something) that New Year’s Eve show from New York. You know, the one with Ryan Seacrest. There was a band performing, one that I had actually heard of. And that’s about it. I knew their name and nothing else. They are called Florida Georgia Line.

I was paying enough attention to know they were doing a song called, “Sundays,” or something like that. And then I heard the line. It went, “If I’m lucky, yeah I might get paid.” And it just didn’t sound right. I suspected they had changed it.

And so, to the Internet! Where the first thing I discovered was the name of the song was actually, “Sun Daze.” Isn’t the web wonderful? I mean, years ago we would have been thinking it was called “Sundays,” right up until the day we read it on the record label. And if we never bought the record, we’d be wrong forever.

I quickly found the lyrics and sure enough, and as usual, I was right. The actual lyric was, “If I’m lucky, yeah I might get laid.” Well sure, this was probably the duo’s biggest audience ever, they were performing live and if the network said to change the word, well, what else could they do?

Well, they could have done what Jim Morrison did just before appearing for the first (and last) time on the Ed Sullivan Show. A producer had told the band that they must change the lyric to their hit “Light My Fire” from “Girl, we couldn’t get much higher,” to “Girl, we couldn’t get much better.”

Hell, that doesn’t even rhyme. History is a little fuzzy on whether the Doors verbally agreed to this, but it’s crystal clear about what happened next. Morrison sang the original lyrics, and the Doors were banned from the Sullivan Show for life. (Which for Morrison meant less than four years.)

So, can you really blame Florida Georgia Line for caving? I mean, a gig’s a gig, right? And with Ryan Seacrest, no less. Still, when I went on to read all of the lyrics in “Sun Daze” I was somewhat surprised. There were references to getting stoned, the corn hole game and sitting a girl up on the kitchen sink and putting “a pink umbrella in her drink.” Okay, maybe I’m reading too much into that last one, but I don’t think ol’ Ed would have liked it. Nope, not one little bit.
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