Friday, July 25, 2014

Everybody Loves Raymond Committed Murder…of My Eyeballs

He's a big, dumb galoot, but we love him.


















I'm not an angry person. I don't shout at babies or kick puppies or threaten to speak to the manager.

But when I see the stupid fucking face of Ray from Everybody Loves Raymond, I just get…so…angry. Yesterday, I was scrolling through Hulu, looking for something to watch in my post-Community loneliness. And there it was. Everybody Loves Raymond. I'm not going to go into discussions of sexism or ageism or generally poopy writing. Sometimes you just hate a thing. You don't know why. Or maybe you do. Maybe you saw one episode, and Ray did something dumb, and instead of having some wine and taking a bath, Debra made him sleep on the couch and think about what he did like the most overdone wife caricature on the planet. And then the show won a bunch of Emmys or whatever, and it was like, "Whyyyyy?" even though awards shows are stupid.

To be clear, I almost don't have a problem with Ray Romano. I definitely hate watched that entire season of Parenthood where he hooked up with Lauren Graham, and I didn't have to mute it even once. And to show you just the kinds of grudges I usually hold against TV people, I'm still seriously mad at Peter Krause for almost every season of Six Feet Under and often remind his Parenthood character about all those times Nate Fisher did a super shitty thing to Brenda because WAAAAH! He's so misunderstood. Shut up, Nate Fisher. I'M GLAD YOU'RE DEAD.

Also, Ray Romano's name is a cheese, and as far as I'm concerned, that automatically gets you like 300 person points. (Alison Brie clearly gets 400 because brie is the best cheese.)

But back to the hate at hand.

It's not Ray Romano that bugs me. It's that show. Let's look at the evidence, shall we?

ITEM #1: This picture.

What is this???


















This is THE defining photo of Everybody Loves Raymond. What are they doing in that picture? Are they performing in a first grade tap recital? It's the photo equivalent of your 7th grade geography teacher showing up wearing a novelty necktie. Like, "Look at us! Can you believe how silly we are? We're the crazy cast of a wacky show where a big galoot does a big dumb thing every week!"

And everyone is ignoring the fact that Peter Boyle is clearly calling for help. SOMEONE HELP PETER BOYLE. GOD.

And when someone holds his or her hands out like that, there had better be cheesecake in them. Cheesecake for me. And Doris Roberts. She can have some too because clearly she is over this photo shoot.

ITEM #2: Episode descriptions.

I went into the Everybody Loves Raymond IMDB page for these. Do you know what that means? It means it will come up at the bottom of the screen every time I use IMDB to remind me of that time I looked up Everybody Loves Raymond. I hope you're happy, Patricia Heaton.

Ray accidentally tapes football over his wedding.

DAMN YOU, BRILLIANT GALOOT! IS THERE ANYTHING YOU WON'T DO THAT INVOLVES OUT-OF-DATE TECHNOLOGY? 

Ray and Debra try to be nice to each other.

SPOILER ALERT: THEY FAIL. RAY SLEEPS ON THE COUCH FOR THE 1,300TH TIME THIS SEASON.

A man accidentally sneezes on Ray and he think's he's caught the man's germs.

OH, FOR FUCK'S SAKE. SOMEONE SOLD ADVERTISING TO BE SHOWN DURING THIS EPISODE. 

Debra accidentally throws out Ray's letter from Muhammad Ali and Marie takes the blame for it. But in return for helping Debra, Marie has Debra take the blame for the disappearance of Franks clothes. Debra can't lie very well so she tells Frank the truth and tells him not to tell Marie. In return Franks wants her to take the blame for digging up Marie's roses. It becomes one big mess!

YOU CAN REALLY TELL THIS IS FROM THE FINAL SEASON. JESUS CHRIST.

And my personal favorite, maybe of all time:

Ray and Debra have a fight over a can opener.

QUICK. SOMEONE GET THIS FOR ME ON DVD. I HAVE TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENED.

ITEM #3: Can I PLEASE watch the Russian version of this show, Everybody Loves Kostya? He's not wearing pants in this photo. Not wearing pants! 


In Russia, Kostya is, how you say, big galoot?



















ITEM #4: This show killed Peter Boyle. This show is an actual murderer. Case closed. 

YOU CAN SLEEP ON THE COUCH TONIGHT, EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Welcome to Bethville Theater Presents: Christopher Pike's Gimme a Kiss

One kiss. Like 300 deaths.
Shhhhhh! Please don't tell anyone you saw me here. It could have disastrous consequences. 

You see, I've faked my own death. 

Why, you ask? Well, I come from a land where people are very, very sensitive. The other day, I was at the mall with my friend Katherine, and I told her that her bra strap was showing. She was so embarrassed, she immediately left the mall and committed suicide by driving her Ferrari into a ravine. I was so embarrassed at having made Katherine so embarrassed that I developed a huge cocaine habit. Like, huge. And my friend Stacey was so embarrassed that I developed a drug habit that she gunned down like six football players. The rest of the team was so embarrassed by the untimely deaths of their teammates that they all developed coke habits. AND THEN, they all drove their Ferraris into the SAME RAVINE. I'm so embarrassed by all of this that I had to get away. That's why released the parking brake on my own Ferrari at the top of Teen Suicide Ravine and let people think that I'm dead. 

Embarrassment is a powerful thing. It can drive you to faking your own death just to teach everyone a lesson, as Jane did in Christopher Pike's Gimme a Kiss. It can even drive you to MURDER. So, try not to get too embarrassed by this pivotal scene from Gimme a Kiss, as performed by me and my friend Amanda.



Monday, July 14, 2014

Princeton Mom Saves the World from Feminists

CANNOT BE STOPPED.

















It is the year 2175. Feminists have taken over the earth. 95 percent of the men are dead. The rest are in hiding. In a small mountain hideout, deep in the heart of Manitoba, a small group of men are planning...

"We can take the world back," said Steve the Rugged to the other five leaders of the Secret Society of Manliness, swiveling around dramatically in his chair made from slabs of hot and spicy beef jerky.

"But how?" said Kevin the Timid, twiddling his thumbs anxiously.

"Dammit, Kevin," Steve the Rugged replied. "We have to be men about this. Men make quick decisions. They don't take no for an answer. They have firm handshakes."

Kevin the Timid could only nod. He had not been among the men for long and was not used to their ways. For most of his 28 years, Kevin the Timid had lived…among the feminists. It was barbaric. He was expected to shave once a week. He had to engage in meaningful conversations. He had to watch ice dancing.

"What do we need to do?" Kevin the Timid asked. He wanted to learn the ways of men.

It was Greg the Totally Ripped that answered his question.

"We have to bring her back," he said.

"But that's not possible," said Malcolm the Plaid. "Not since the feminists stole all of our scientific technology and used it for useless things, like tampons and other vagina stuff."

"There is one thing they don't have," said Steve the Rugged, clicking a button on his universal remote control device. A panel in the wall slid open.

"What is it?' asked Kevin the Timid.

"I think you mean 'Who is it?' It's her," Steve the Rugged mansplained.

"MY GOD," said Kevin the Timid. It was her. It was really her. The women called her things like "The Usurper," "El Diablo," and "That Sad Lady."

But the world would always remember her as Susan Patton. Otherwise known as the Princeton Mom.

The Princeton Mom was a force of anti-feminism like the world had never seen. During the early 21st century, she wielded her opinions like a mighty club of truth, singlehandedly shattering the ideals of female medical students and executives the world over. The force of her words drove millions of women from positions of power back to their desperate eHarmony accounts. For a while, it seemed feminism might be defeated at last, driven back to the 1960s from whence it came.

But then a woman was elected President of the United States, and everything changed. No one knows what really happened on that fateful day. But many suspected that during one of her menstrual cycles, the President hit the "BLOW UP ALL THE MEN" button in the Oval Office. Only Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans, and Idris Elba survived. And maybe also Javier Bardem. Nobody knows for sure. These last remaining men went into hiding.

It was over. The feminists had won. They celebrated their victory by bringing back Cagney & Lacey and drinking grapefruit mojitos with their bras off.

But now, a century later, the men were preparing to rise again. And they had a powerful weapon in their arsenal: the cryogenically frozen body of The Princeton Mom. And about 5,000 copies of her book, Marry Smart.

Now, to speed things along because we don't have all day, I'll tell you that the men put Princeton Mom in the microwave on defrost for 15 minutes. Then, they popped her into the oven at 350 degrees for another 30 minutes, along with some pizza rolls.

DING! She was ready, and so were their snacks. The men replaced Princeton Mom's burned bits with titanium alloy and outfitted her with laser cannons.

"What do we do now?" asked Kevin the Timid.

"We unleash her upon the women," Steve the Rugged replied.

TO BE CONTINUED...

Friday, June 27, 2014

Migraines? I Like to Think of Them as Ourgraines

Hey. Hi. 

I'm speaking in a whisper, so be sure to adjust your inner monologue levels starting now.

We have to whisper. If it helps, imagine you're Arya in the bowels of the castle at King's Landing. 

Oh, no, friendly reader companion! Some guys are plotting to murder the Hand of the King, Arya's father, Ned Stark. We must speak only in whispers or they'll catch us for sure.

Good. Very good. Just take that inner voice volume down like seven notches. There you go. Gentle, relaxing tones like you're a yoga instructor who does voiceover work for one of those "Women Who Murder" shows on Oxygen. Shhhhh….

This is no adjustment for me. I've been talking like this for ages. My boyfriend gets migraines. This bout has lasted two weeks so far. When people ask me what I've been up to, that's what I tell them. "Migraines. So many migraines." I sit in the dark. I make no noise. Not to sound martyr-ish, but that's where we are. Any little thing could set off a new migraine. The other day I ate some chips in the next room, and he told me afterward that the sound of it made him almost barf. 

I had a migraine once. It was adorable, when I think back on it. It was the Finding Nemo of migraines. I wore my sunglasses for 24 hours and knocked myself out with ordinary over-the-counter medications that might as well have been Skittles. I recovered. I was back at work the next day. These migraines are so much more than my piddly migraine. I'm sorry I mentioned it. I'm so embarrassed. 

My mom always tells me to look for the positive in things. Sometimes I just look at her like she's crazy. Sometimes I actually try it. 

Here goes. 

1. I get to eat all the leftovers, now that my man is on a diet of applesauce and crackers.
2. I get the whole couch to myself basically all the time, so I can lay on it and spread out like I'm the Pablo Escobar of this couch.

Those are the only two positives I was able to think of just now.

I don't have time to write all the negatives, so here is this video that I think sums them up nicely.


I'm going to stare into the refrigerator with a helpless look on my face now. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

FEAR ABBY: An Advice Column

Be afraid. To seek advice.


FEAR ABBY,

My boyfriend is cheating on me. What do I do?

Helpless in Wisconsin


HELPLESS IN WISCONSIN,

Do you have a cellar? Do you have gloves? Maybe it's time for Mitchell to have an accident. Oh, yeah. I know his name is Mitchell. I know where he lives. I know where you live. Do you always hide your house keys under that rock beside your porch?

Yours in Death,

FEAR ABBY



FEAR ABBY,

I can't help it. I feel like you're watching me all the time. In the shower. From my closet. Any time I'm alone. Is there any truth to this, or am I just being paranoid?

Your Next Door Neighbor Helen


ELLEN OR WHATEVER,

No, shut up. Just that one time.

I'm slowly and methodically killing you with poison,

FEAR ABBY



FEAR ABBY,

What do you mean you're killing me with poison?

Helen from Next Door


HELEN,

Oh, ha ha ha. I'm only kidding. It's just a little neighbor humor.

I ate your dog the other day,

FEAR ABBY



FEAR ABBY,

Do you have any advice for a guy who just wants to stand under the streetlight on the corner wearing a clown mask for a living?

Bongo the Terror Clown


Dear Bongo,

No. I am indifferent to your plight.

FEAR ABBY



FEAR ABBY,

Oh, Jesus Christ. Is that what happened to Scruffy? You MONSTER.

Helen from Next Door. You know, Helen of "Helen and Bob"?


HELEN,

I was just kidding. NO I WASN'T.

FEAR ABBY

Monday, June 16, 2014

I Did This to Myself: I Let Modeling Go to My Head

At the height of my modeling career.

























"Hey, can I use you as a hand model this weekend?" my boyfriend asked.

I looked up from the thing I was doing, which was probably just being unbelievably beautiful for hours on end.

"It's for this thing for work," he added.

"I'm so flattered, Michael," I said, trying to play it cool. He could not know that he had just said words that I had been waiting for my entire life.

At last I could tell people I was a model.

"Just my hands?" I asked, drawing my shapely lips into a pout.

"Yes. Your hands at various locations around the city. It's for an ad I'm working on."

I knew I had a lot more to offer than just my hands, but what could I say? A gig was a gig. And a paying gig as well, as Mike promised me that I could eat the piece of pizza he planned to photograph with my hands as part of the "New York experience" photo series.

"I would be happy to hand model for you," I said, fluttering two lush fields of eyelashes in his direction.

"Okay," he said. He'd already gone back to reading comics.

Preparing for my first real modeling gig was a no-brainer. I had to get into the best hand shape of my life, and I only had one day to do it. I began my rigorous workout first thing Friday morning.

"Look! Over there!" I gestured.

"What?" Mike asked, looking out the apartment window where I had pointed.

"Shhhhhhh!" I said, drawing a finger to my lips. "I have five more sets of jazz hands. I need to concentrate."

He was patient, not even batting an eye as I hummed "Single Ladies" to myself and began to flip my hands back and forth during dinner that night.
Tone is very important to hand beauty.

























On Saturday morning, I woke up early and did some texting to warm up my thumbs.

"I haven't even asked you what I should wear," I commented to Michael over breakfast.

"Whatever you want," he replied, shrugging.

"Probably whatever will frame my hands the best," I said, nodding. "Something a little caj. Understated. Modern."

"What you have on is fine."

"Is it?" I asked. I feared he was testing me. I'd heard stories of photographers who said that things were "fine," and then you never worked again. I needed to be careful. Fine was such a dangerous word.

In the end, I went with the strappy summer dress. When Mike moved in in an apparent attempt to grope me (typical photog behavior), I knew I'd made the right choice.

"Are you ready to go?" he asked.

We stepped out the door together. Out towards destiny? Maybe.

Our first shooting location was the tram to Roosevelt Island.

"Cup your hands like you're holding the Queensborough Bridge," Mike said. As I did, he snapped several photos.

"Is this right?" I kept asking. I couldn't read from his face whether or not he was pleased with my work.

"Maybe just tip your hands a little more towards the camera," he replied.

I did. When it still wasn't quite right, he moved my hands the way he wanted them. "Like that," he said.

As we walked along Roosevelt Island and snapped photos of me cupping various buildings in the Manhattan skyline with my shapely hands, I began to feel more natural. Confident even.

"I'm going to cup the Long Island City Pepsi sign," I said. "Then, I'm going to cup that abandoned hospital. And this might just be me going out on a limb here, but what do you think of my hands framing that seagull eating an old bagel? Like it's a tribute to squalor or something?"

I could tell by the look on his face that he was nonplussed by my creative input.

"Maybe just come back over here and let me get a few more shots of the UN?" he said, boringly.

We walked back towards the tram. We were going to head to Times Square so I could cup a dirty guy dressed as Elmo with my delicate fingers. But then something happened. Something that would change my hand modeling career, my very life, forever.

"Mommy!" I heard a voice cry.

I cupped one comely hand to my ear.

"Did you hear something?" I asked Mike. He hadn't, of course.

It was a little boy who had lost his mom at the FDR memorial. I knew I could help.

"Are you lost?" I asked him.

"Yes," the little boy replied, frantically.

"Well, don't worry," I said, with reassurance in my voice. "I can help. I'm a model."

I flexed my fingers in preparation.

"Now," I said. "Which way did she go?"

I pointed one direction. "Did she go that way?"

I pointed in the opposite direction. "Or maybe it was that way."

I flapped my hands over my midsection. "Do you remember what she was wearing?" I asked. "A hat? Sunglasses? Maybe a wig like Marie Antoinette?" With each suggestion, I moved my hands to represent the possible article of clothing. Perhaps it would awaken a memory of the last time the boy had seen his mother.

The boy was just crying by then.

Finally, he scampered off the direction I had first pointed, toward a woman wearing a blue and white striped top.

"Stripes. I should have known," I muttered.

As we continued walking toward the tram, I started thinking that I could do so much more than hold New York in my hands. By this time next month, I could be cupping Big Ben or the Kremlin for some fancy photographer named Giovanni. I could give the world the gift of my hands.

"Do you ever feel like you've just done a miraculous thing?" I asked.

Could the world handle my hands? 



















"Would you mind if we got just one more photo of the bridge?" Mike asked, ignoring my comment like a jerk.

I knew then that I had outgrown him.

"The bridge?" I asked. "You have the Adriana Lima of hands in front of you, and you want to photograph a bridge?"

"I think you might be getting a little too into this modeling thing, Bethany," Mike said.

"Am I, Miguel?" I replied. "Am I?"

He bought me a bottle of water and made me drink it, sitting on a bench that looked out at the river.

"Feel better?" he asked.

"Yeah," I said. "Sorry about that."

"It's okay," Mike said. He put his arm around me. Times Square (and the world) would just have to wait.

"Hey, would you do me a favor?" I asked, humbled at last.

"Sure," he replied.

"Don't Photoshop my fingers to make them thinner."

Thursday, June 12, 2014

My Second Favorite Scene from Christopher Pike's See You Later

NOOOO! NOT CHINA!



















I know you guys have been waiting all day and all night to see more of Batman and Catwoman reenacting my favorite scenes from Christopher Pike's See You Later. This is my second favorite scene. Just remember that after this, you're just going to have to read this book on your own. I'll be busy preparing for my one-woman show of my favorite scenes from Christopher Pike's Die Softly. Be sure to tune in!