Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Man, I wasn't really feelin that, dog.

I’m in my car like some sort of new age hobo, typing a blog from outside a place where middle eastern guys make breakfast sandwiches. I’m waiting for my wife. We just had a parent teacher conference and now we’re going to an ultrasound. I’m like a real big time family man. How wonderful. Last night we had a blizzard. I’ve been excavating my cars from gigantic piles all morning like Indiana Jones does with ancient skulls. For some reason, I now have a chest pain. Maybe it has to do with the most exciting news I’ve recently heard, namely that Howard Stern is being bandied about to be the host of American Idol. Here’s why that would be great:
(Actually, guess what? Now I’m on a train, headed home. There are those who would argue that writing on your laptop on the train is a stupid idea, but frankly, I think that my phone is worth more than this computer at this juncture. Anyway, where was I, back before the ultrasound and all that coffee? Ah yes!)
It would be great because howard is fascinating. That’s the obvious answer. He’s a master of making people listen to him, and his show is the definition of compelling broadcasting. But that’s not the real reason that it would be so amazing. The REAL reason is because everyone is SO infuriated and almost no one that sees this potential move as a bad idea really has any idea who Howard Stern is. I liken it to modern politics.
Right now, as we’ve discussed, the vast majority of Americans are not getting their news from primary sources (like actually WATCHING cspan [cuz, well, that sucks] or the State of the Union address, because it’s too long and it’s not convenient. People wait for their pop culture avatars (in the Hindu sense, not the James Cameron or Second Life sense [ew!]) to distill the information into soundbytes that resonate with their prepackaged world view, and they’re done with it. No messy decision making or uncomfortable slopping onto the left or right for issues that may not seem like bad ideas but are espoused by your theoretical enemies.
Similarly, people don’t take the time to listen to Howard Stern. They overhear someone call him crass or a pig and they ascribe their own ideas about what constitutes a crass pig to the Stern show without ever having heard it.
This mental rewriting and subsequent outrage is not limited to priggish moms and people who were around when Howard was getting a ton of media attention for battling the FCC either. My friend, Buttcheeks (not his real name) is an otherwise erudite and cultured young man. He plays in a good band and he’s been all around the world, and when I mention Stern, he calls him an idiot and asks how I could possibly listen to that ‘crap.’
Now, I know butcheeks pretty well (I’m referring to the guy, though I’m also pretty familiar with the body parts) and I know that if he’d EVER listened, he’d be shocked and disappointed at how quickly he wrote off something that’s really quite refreshing and intelligent in its irreverence, but he never will. He’s already done without ever really beginning, the way lots of people write off great bands and vow never to listen to them, even though they’ve never heard them, despite the fact that their buddies have recommended the bands based on their similar musical tastes.
This shit has happened to me a lot. I found out about a lot of great bands that I missed out on while they were around, simply because I sort of arbitrarily decided that I thought I didn’t like them before I’d ever heard a song.
Likewise with Stern. People that call him “deplorable” and “stupid” and “immoral” or otherwise don’t appreciate at least a FACET of his show simply haven’t listened enough (or they’re dimwits that reduce everything to the bible [not to be confused with regular religious folks, so relax out there {though, let’s be honest…you’re not a fundamentalist, but you think this guy in the sky is guiding you and there’s some sort of place you go, and your dog and your grandma will be there, and you can all sit around and spy on your offspring while eating cookies and never gaining a pound ? And you base this on three books written over two thousand years ago, which have since edited by pretty much anyone that wanted to? Hmmmm. You could probably stand to wake up a little bit, yourself}]). Howard’s not in any way immoral, nor is he stupid. But lots of people throw those two words at him. Why? Because he’s challenging and compelling and creates an emotional response. And THAT would make for great television, just as it makes for great radio.
AND, there’s nothing that a (legitimately) stupid, crappy plastic show like American Idol could use like a dose of actual human opinion. I mean, Simon Cowell doesn’t seem all that human, or even lifelike to me. Even off the show, in the tabloids and stuff, he’s all black shirts and huge tits and odd hair, smirks and scowls and a little praise parsed out with the “truth” He’s never seemed as human as, let’s say, Britney Spears or Nick Lachey, and that’s really saying something.
I mean, that show’s just completely staffed with plastic humanoid smile-bot 3000’s as is (and now they’re bringing in middle-aged-teenaged-boy-dance-machine-peter-pan-impersonator Ellen to add some humanity? Fuck me. That’s like cutting down trees to help close the hole in the ozone layer. That’s like fucking someone in the ass to keep them a virgin. That’s like…oh, right. That’s like lots of misguided policies that people have actually already thought up and applied to things.) I mean, look at these people. Paula? Randy? SEACREST? That one irritating bitch that’s about to go back to her job at Blimpies? They’re a line of products from Tokyo’s Robo-con in the year 2151, not a group of living people that take dumps and cry (though Paula does cry and randy definitely has taken a dump or two).
Look, I’m stoked on the IDEA of howard on that show. I don’t know if it’s gonna happen, but if it did, I’d be running back to American Idol faster than Nikki McKibben at a plate of Oxycontin topped donuts.
And that’s the truth.

27 comments:

Drew said...

"and randy definitely has taken a dump or two"

... First off, that was fucking hilarious. Secondly, I bet he dominates the stall!

Mark said...

One of my earliest memories of whackin' it is to the Jenna Jameson part in Private Parts. Thanks Howard.

Jayzilla said...

interesting that you close with a nikki mckibben joke and not a nikki sixx joke... heroin jokes are back in

Robb said...

"middle-aged-teenaged-boy-dance-machine-peter-pan-impersonator Ellen"

This.

misshennessy said...

I'm with you. I don't really see it happening but I would totally watch just for Howard. He is the shit. I kinda miss commuting for an hour to work everyday so I could listen to him for that long uniterrupted! Intelligent, witty, hilarious... I could go on and on. Love him!
PS> hope the conference went well :)

Blake said...

I love Stern. I wish I could afford Sirius.

dustyfloors said...

This show is a real vice for me. I realize I'm watching hot garbage but I can't not watch it.

Also, this title made me laugh once I realized we were talking about American Idol.

Maximilian said...

man.... as i'm a german i don't know that much about howard stern. but what i know about him and the german version of american idol makes me think we would need someone like him as well... i mean most people here watch that shit cause the judges are really offensive to the people and talk shit all the time.

but there's hope. i don't know if anyone is familiar with stefan raab, a german tv show host. he's doing a casting show for the eurovision songcontest. and the other judges are real musicians, not some assholes. well, what i wanted to say: one of those judges actually said after the show he hopes he treated everyone with respect. and i think that is an important fact. cause on those other shows they're assholes.

HFQQ said...
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HFQQ said...
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HFQQ said...

I don't know if beeks has heard of Buckfast Tonic Wine. If not, someone needs to tell him about this shit. This stuff will make any sparks chugging dude look like some pussy high school kid sneaking wine coolers from the basement fridge.

Did I mention it is affectionately called "Wreck the Hoose Juice"?

This is a small quote from the wikipedia page.

"Many politicians and social activists single out Buckfast Tonic Wine as being particularly responsible for crime, disorder, and general social deprivation"

It is made in great britain, in an abbey, by monks, and it has as much caffeine in a fifth as eight cans of coke, not to mention boasting an alcohol content of 15% by volume.

I read about it in Craig Ferguson's book "American on Purpose", where it is mentioned in an anecdote(he punches a police officer).

Donnie said...

How do you feel about "Celebrity" Rehab?

kylewagoner said...

On an unrelated note (though you started by saying you were in your car), I awoke this morning to hear that my car was totaled in the night because the car port above it collapsed onto it and smashed in the roof and busted out the back window. And we have no insurance that covers that, so we're fucked. Wooo!

love,
Kyle

jbody said...

Howard did a segment on his satellite on demand tv thing that has to be one of the most bizarre and fucking subversive things ive ever seen televised.He got moderately well known black and jewish comedians to roast a ku klux klan grand warlock or whatever.anyhow this mongoloid racist piece of shit ended up eviscerating the professional comedians because his crass,low information jabs just seemed more natural and immediate than ripping on such an obvious target as himself.Even the comics were laughing

Scratchin dat' gOnzo said...

Jbody - I think I've seen that Stern bit, at my cousin's pad a couple years back

Anyone know if Arby's has any good specials now?

Stu said...

Fuck yeah, Buckfast (gets you fucked fast) Tonic Wine is lethal.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8464359.stm

HFQQ said...

That news report is fucking hilarious.




"A Freedom of Information request showed the drink was mentioned in 5,638 crime reports in Strathclyde from 2006-2009, equating to three a day on average.

One in 10 of those offences were violent and the bottle was used as a weapon 114 times in that period"

Mikey said...
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Mikey said...

So Brendan, I've got something to say that's totally unrelated to this entry.

I read your interview with rampantrock.com. It was a great read for sure. You talked a lot about inspiration which was funny because at the end of reading the article I felt inspired to go write a song (which I'll do after I write this). You talked about how cool Fat Mike was and how you can't really talk normally to him. I imagine that's how I'd be if I met you too. Anyways, enough ass kissing.

What really made me want to tell you about that interview was your comment at the end. And I realize that what I'm about to say is sorta irrelevant because you've got a family now and shit's different and as far as I see it, you guys have had a fucking special career so far. But here it goes...

You said "our name is out there. People know us or they don’t. We’re not getting any more popular than we are". Well, I have to disagree. Your names are most definitely not out there. You've got a cult following for sure. But I'll tell you, The Lawrence Arms (and all affiliated groups) have been my favourite band for about 4 years now I think. I started getting into you guys right after you played here (in Toronto) with Alkaline Trio I think (and I only know about that tour because I once looked up when the last time you guys played here was). Granted, I'm only 18 now. But in those 4 years, I've basically only met one person who knew who you guys were. And I stumbled upon your music by accident on itunes.

But I've shown your music to a bunch of my friends myself. And they may not be as into The Lawrence Arms as I am but they definitely dig it. My friend the other day, after I got him to listen to it, said "Buttsweat and Tears is fucking amazing!" I guess what I'm trying to say is, you guys are incredibly underrated and it's partly because your names aren't all that out there, or at least not as I've seen. I don't know why because it seems pretty damn hard to find people who don't like your music and from everything I've read/heard you guys have travelled and worked fucking hard over the past 10 years.

Beyond that I don't exactly know what my point is because if I were you I might be thinking "Ok, why are you telling me this?" I guess just to let you know that, I think, your band still has so much potential to become better known. Should you guys choose to ever really do huge tours again is totally your decision (and, like I said, I know stuff has changed for you guys). And, personally, I think, in so many ways having a cult following is way better than being really well known. That's a really special thing. I know that, should you guys ever decide to play Toronto again and I got to see you play, I'd probably shed tears at that show. I guess I just wanted to offer a different view. It's not really a negative thing either, or it shouldn't be. Just wanted to, like I said, offer a different perspective.

Candice said...

mikey- thank for the heads up on that interview!

Nick said...

Hence the "wasted potential" solo album.

Bridgett said...

When I was a kid, I would watch the Howard Stern show (what was it on? E?) because I wanted to see the blurry naked boobs. Apparently I didn't know that I could use the internet for the same purpose.

JSIN said...

San Dimas High School Footballl Rules!!!

sean said...

Is there anywhere I can listen to Stern other than paying for satellite radio?

sunrisehomeland said...

Is the Lawrence Arms 10 year anniversary DVD ever gonna come out? I am really looking forward to it and I hope I'm not just getting my hopes up (like the ASOB reunion shows DVD that was filmed and never happened).

Sickie27 said...

Yo, Beex, your entry was cool and all but...

Andrew WK totally just called my ex and Andrew WK said I sounded like a fine young lady! Please share my excitement.

性感的我 said...

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