joe dreck
May 28, 2004

For Joe Dreck (a k a The Captain) life is not an email but an email can be life.
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Subject: The Crap! The News! Doesn't matter. It's the same thing.
Date: Thursday, May 27, 2004 6:50 PM
Did'ja happen to see in today's National Digest section of the paper where a church in Winfield, WV was sent a notice from city officials telling them to keep the noise down. It seems that some neighbors had complained that the church's choir practices were disturbing them.

This is news? I mean, really! So fucking what? Is this little mundane, banal event in West Virginia something you wanta' read about in the paper? Does anyone anywhere besides this little burg in W. Va. give a shit?

Hey, y'know what? Yesterday a guy from the cable company parked his truck in my driveway and I couldn't pull out. I told him I wuz gonna throw a brick thru his window if he didn't move it.

So, like, how come this wasn't in the news? Huh? No one from the KC Star came out to interview Me. There wasn't any one from channel 5 here for a Late Breaking, Investigative Report or nothin'. Sheeit. How come, huh? Why ihn't that news?

Course, for crap like this, ya' don't need no steenking newspaper! Right! No steenking TV either!!...cuz thas why ya' got ME. I'll send ya' all the banal, mundane, off the wall, bullshit crap ya' want! Or need. Ya dig!

Yeah, I know, I know, the story is supposed to be 'cute'. And it's cute. FLASH. News Bulletin: Peoples complain to Church, "Hey, ya'll, hold it down over there will'ya!" Ha ha

But hey ese, it's not NEWS. OK. They got some dumb-ass tv forums for crap like that. They call 'em the Jay Leno and David Letterman shows. the cap't

P.S. I don't know if ya've heard or not, but Dave Letterman is a Daddy now. Thas' right. Well, for some months now, as a matter of fact. If ya'd like to hear some cute anecdotes about it, Tune in his show week...or next year even. If ya' happen to miss a few of 'em, don't fret, cuz he's got mo plenty enuff to regale ya' with. I just love the cleaver way his writers can get some mention of his new son in there, and dumb ol' me, I'm sittin' there thinking, "Huh, where'd that come from? I thought he was asking Julia Roberts bout her newest movie." Ha ha

And dave can even joke about some of the cute things that happen to him being a daddy too, Like the time he picked him up and Harry, that's the little rascal's name y'know, peed on him! Ha ha ha What a Riot that was! Oh man, I thought I wuz gonna fall right off the sofa. I mean, he peed on him. Can ya' imagine that?! Har har har again. Every time I think of it, I just crack up. I'm tellin' ya', it was just the cutest story I ever heard!! I gotta' go stomach is hurting from laughing so much!!

Subject: Oh Woe, what is to become of us?
Date: Thursday, May 27, 2004 4:07 PM
It's a sad state of affairs, this world. Just a couple of nights ago a young gurl, who was standing next to me in the saloon and trying to add a tip on her credit card slip, axed me, "Scuse me sir, but what's nineteen and five?" and I said, "Huh?" cuz I had no idea what she meant.

And she said, "What's nineteen Plus five?"

"Oh, I see what yer asking now. It's twenty four."

And she said, "Thanks."

Isn't it kinda scary when a college gurl of 20 to 23 years old doesn't know what 19 + 5 is? I mean, C'mon! Whut exactly have they been learnin' her all these years? Sheeeeit. Well, at least she weren't no cheapskate.

Some months ago at the Quik Trip this young dude when I told him I wanted some lottery tickets to run for two weeks said to me, "Two weeks? Like, that's ten days, right?"

TEN DAYS, dig it! Ha ha. And I said, "Well no, actually, cuz like, there's seven days in, like, one week, see, so like…two weeks would be…like.. Fourteen days." And he laughed and said, "Man, I never was very good in math in high school." And I thought to myself, "Yo dude, high school? Sheeit, we're talking early grade school math here." But I refrained from voicin' it.

Some time back I wuz in an optical kinda place lookin to buy a cheap pair of shades and they had a big sign up that said, "25% OFF EVERYTHING"…so I found some glasses that were forty bucks and I handed 'em to this little gurlie there and she went to the calculator/adding machine device and fumbled around there for a minute and said in an exasperated tone, "Oh dang, this thing is not working! What am I going to do now?"

And I said "Yeah so, what's the problem?"

She said, "Well I don't have any way of figuring out what your discount should be, so I don't know what to charge you."

I said, "Well, if it's 25 % off, than the price would be thirty dollars"

She looked at me in amazement and said, "How can you do that?"

See, she didn't know what 75% of forty was, without her calculator.

I 'splained to her how back in the olden days, y'know, like, waaaaaay back, before they had calculators, you had to learn how to do stuff like that. She asked me if I wuz just kidding her about the price and I assured her that it was correct and I wasn't cheating her. I'm sure she had a wonderful story to tell her friends later about the mathematical genius who was in the shop earlier.

I had a young guy a couple of years ago who had just graduated from college with a degree in physics, a degree in physics mind you, like the dude wasn't exactly a dummy, but none the less. ask me, "Charley, which is farther south? San Diego or San Francisco?" I said, "Well, San Diego is about 20 miles or so north of Mexico and San Francisco is about 5 or 600 or so miles north of that. So the correct answer would be...San Diego!"

I mean that's like some one asking you, "What's farther south, Boston or Miami?" Man!!

What in the world is going on? I know every generation ask this question of their youngsters, but…jeeeez. what is going to become of them? But ya' know, when ya' get right down to it, and let's do that, OK, it's not their fault that they don't know how to spel, or do their cipherin', or know where places are or nothin', cus like, it's you Baby Boomers who are at fault. Not me though cuz I wuz born in 41, and so I'm not in that category of fuck-ups, so I'm not to blame...but you guys! You've screwed up Bad!

Sheeit. It's hard to imagine how these young kids could fuck things up any worse than you have. I mean, what a fucked mess you have left for them to deal with. Take a good look at this jacked up planet you are leavin' them, and on top of that, you have left them utterly unprepared to deal with it. Shame. Shame on you! I'm sure glad none of this shit is my fault.

The way I see it, at the present rate of decline in civilization, the future looks pretty dark and dreary to me. It's not gonna be a pretty picture. Nah, it's gonna be bleak, what with the raping and pillaging of our finite natural resources and everthin' else, I figure in about a hunnert years or less, the old man will come home from a hard days huntin' and the missus will be clanging a couple of flints together to make a fire for the evening repast. Woe is the future. the ever optimistic cap't (Ha ha)

Subject: Some early "Gonzo"
Date: Thursday, May 27, 2004 1:14 PM
Hey ya'll, thought ya' might like a little 'taste' of my buddy, the Doctor; Hunter S. Thompson that is. This is a small excerpt from his first book Hell's Angels. Ya' might not be familiar with this, but if ya' come across it and ya' l like him, pick it up. Ya'll dig it!! I think it was published in the early ‘70's.

Although he wasn't a 'made' member or anything like that, he rode with them and hung out with them for over a year to write this book. In the end, if I remember kerrectly, he had a falling out of sorts with "Maximum Sonny" over some financial arrangements and got a righteous ass stomping for his troubles.the cap't

Check it out…

My first crash had wrecked the bike completely and it took several months to have it rebuilt. After that I decided to ride it differently: I would stop pushing my luck on curves, always wear a helmet and try to keep within range of the nearest speed insurance had already been cancelled and my driver's license was hanging by a thread.

So it was always at night, like a werewolf, that I would take the thing out for an honest run down the coast. I was thinking only to run a few long curves to clear my head...but in a matter of minutes I'd be out at the beach with the sound of the engine in my ears, the surf booming up on the sea wall and a fine empty road stretching all the way...

There was no helmet on those nights, no speed limit, and no cooling it down on curves. Then into first gear, forgetting the cars and letting the beast wind out...thirty-five, forty-five... Then into second and wailing through the lights, no worries about green or red signals, but only some other werewolf loony who might be pulling out, too slowly, to start his own run. Not many of these...and with three lanes on a wide curve, a bike coming hard has plenty of room to get around almost anything...then into third, the boomer gear, pushing seventy-five and the beginning of a windscream in the ears, a pressure on the eyeballs like diving into water off a high board. the lever goes up into fourth, and now there's no sound except wind. Screw it all the way over, reach through the handlebars to raise the headlight beam, the needle leans down on a hundred, and windburned eyeballs strain to see down the centerline, trying to provide a margin for the reflexes. But with the throttle screwed on there is only the barest margin, and no room at all for mistakes. It has to be done right..and that's when the strange music starts, when you stretch your luck so far that Fear becomes exhilaration and vibrates along your arms. You can barely see at a hundred; the tears blow back so fast that they vaporize before they get to your ears. The only sounds are wind and the dull roar floating back from the mufflers. The EDGE...there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.

The others---- the living----- are those who pushed their control as far as they felt they could handle it, and then pulled back, or slowed down, or did whatever they had to when it came time to choose between NOW and LATER. But the EDGE is still out there.


Subject: Another minor culinary faux pas
Date: Wednesday, May 26, 2004 3:22 PM
Heck, I have been charring, blackening, and burning to a crisp, foods for many years and getting nothing but Ridicule and Derision for my efforts, and then along comes Chef Paul Prudhomme (sp?) of New Or-Leens doing the same thing to Kudos and Accolades. I don't unnerstan'. Well, anyway, below is an E-mail I sent out to friends a few years ago...

As you may know I come from the French School of Reductionist Cooking. Well early this morning, like around 3:30 of the AM dial I took three lbs. of ground chuck to make a meat loaf with.... plopped it into the oven (please don't ask me to explain why I was making meat loaf at that time of the morn) and laid down for just a sec.

Well of course ya' know whut happened. Some time later, when I eventually woke up, you could say my meat loaf was 'done'. You could further say it was 'well done'. Well, when you get right down to it you could say it was 'real fucking done' as I had reduced it to the size of a baseball. This, of course, as you know, is simply SOP for moi.

It was no easy matter getting rid of the smoke, and the smell I guess is gonna' be permanent. I saw one of my neighbors looking at the smoke coming out of the doors and windows of my house and I assured him there was no need to be callin' no Fire Department or anything; that I had everything under control and was merely letting a bit of excess smoke out. He went back into his house shaking his head and muttering. (we've been thru this before, you see)

Since I couldn't find my hammer and chisel, I was unable to eat it. But, so as not to waste it, I utilised it by placing it in the center of my coffee table. I am prepared to tell, with a straight face, curious peoples that it is a piece of volcanic rock which I brought back as a souvenir from my vacation to Costa Rica.  

cap't hoohah

Subject: The thrice-baked potato: pushing the culinary envelope just to see what would happen
Date: Sunday, May 23, 2004 5:53 PM
This turned out to be a rather surreal and disappointing experience.

Boyz and gurlz, have you ever had a twice-baked potato? Whas' up with that? Sheeit. I decided I could do better than that. thus, a few days ago, I decided to explore......and go where no man.......blah, blah blah, so..... I wanted to see what would happen if we went one more time, and go for the Big Three!

I carefully selected a fine idaho baking potato and placed it in my 375 degree pre-heated oven. I let it bake for a while. I'm not being deliberately vague here, I just don't keep exact statistics on these kinda things. I took it out of the oven and placed it on the counter and observed it closely. Then I put it back in the oven for still a while longer and extracted it once again. I now your twice-baked potato. So what!! Big deal.

OK so now here we go. We're gonna see what happens when we put it back in for the third time, thus the thrice-baked potato!! I put it back in the thrice time and eventually took it out again and sat it on the counter for the final time and it just sat there. Nothing unusual happening.

So I placed my pet rock next to it, expecting maybe some kind of interaction. By the way, this is a new pet rock. Perhaps you recall my last pet rock was discovered starved to death lying in it's own feces. I guess I'm not a very responsible pet guardian. Well, in any case, I watched them both very closely. for a long time. I mean, very closely. I was perfectly still, hoping not to disrupt any dynamic which might occur...I didn't move...... neither did they!! We were all very still.

I focused my entire being on them. and then. at some point in the process, I realized I could no longer perceive either one of them. They had become invisible!! I said to myself, 'WOW, this is too much! So this is what the mystique of the 'thrice-baked potato is all about". But then I thought to myself, "Hmmmm, not only can I not see the rock and the potato, I can't see any fucking thing at all!! Oh shit, have I gone utterly blind?"

I shrieked out, "No! No! No!" in a brief moment of panic, but it was nothing so dramatic as blindness. No, no... it would seem that, so intent was I in my observations, I had failed to realize that the sun had set and it was now night time. Y'know, like... no light time any more kinda thing. Yes, that's it. This explained a lot! the end.. the result of my experiment was that I wound up with a rock and a potato sitting there inertly on my the darkness... perfectly still and myself feeling a bit foolish. So, what was I expecting, you ask? I dunno!   Just something more, that's all, Ya'know! just something more!!!

A thrice-baked potato? Pshaw! Big Fucking Deal!! the cap't

Subject: Those assholes in Lawrence just keep on keepin' on bein' Stupid!
Date: Friday, May 21, 2004 4:16 PM
Did'ja see in the paper a few days ago where the Dope Po-lice in Lawrence conducted simultaneous raids on three suspected dope houses after a month long investigation? The results? What a coup for the anti-dope forces this was!! In one house they found a small amount of meth and arrested a guy and his gurlfriend, In one house they found TWO GRAMS of marijuana (GASP) and arrested a 23 year old gurl, and in the third house they found Nothing!! Nada that is, and arrested NO ONE!!

All this after a month long investigation!! I wonder if the cops involved had their picture taken in front of those two grams of weed while they posed with their weapons at the ready? Do ya' know what two grams of weed looks like? Unroll one those joints ya' got stashed and sprinkle it on a sheet of paper. There's yer two grams!! Big fucking deal!! No, but all kidding aside, that's two grams of the 'devil weed' that will never make it into the hands of Lawrence's youth, and we can all be grateful fer that.

Now, days later the streets of Lawrence are a safer and more tranquil place as a result of the dedication and vigilance of their drug task force. These guys don't ever let their guard down. When the evil scourge of drugs are involved, you can be sure they're gonna be doing their jobs to the utmost.

KANSAS!! thank god! the cap't

p.s. Yo, but it be's my own Personal Opinion that the peoples of Lawrence are giving other 'hayseeds' a bad name.

Subject: It was Shocking!
Date: Tuesday, May 18, 2004 8:02 PM
Earlier today I wuz coming out of the grocery store and I ran into a gurl I know and she seemed baffled and bewildered to see me and I said, "Whas up!" and she said, "Charley, what in the World are YOU doing here?" And I was a bit taken aback by her accusatory tone and I meekly uttered, "Um, grocery shopping maybe?" and she said, "Well I just never thought of you shopping for groceries before! I just can't imagine it" And I said, "Well ya' know ever since they found my man-servant's starved body lying in his own feces I've had to do this kinda' stuff myself" and she giggled and said she just couldn't picture me shopping for groceries and I told her she was welcome to follow me about the store if she wished and she could watch me push my cart around and pull items off the shelves and stuff. She told me she would really like that, but that she had to get home to fix dinner for her boyfriend and she told me my “secret” was safe with her and I said, "I'll see ya' later at the saloon huh." And she went on her way.

In the last month and a half, this situation has come up several times. Peoples have said, "Gosh Charley, I've known you for years and this is the first time I've ever seen you in the daytime."

A guy came into the bar about a month ago and said he saw my Rivera in the parking lot of a laundromat and wondered what in the hell I would be doing at a laundromat? And I said, "Well, whadda'ya think I was doin'? Trollin' for Marlin?" And he said, "Get out! You don't DO
laundry!" And I said, "Well, ever since they found my man-servant's starving body lying in his own feces, I DO NOW!"

I saw a gurl in a diner a few weeks ago and she said, "Charley, I've known you for years and this is the first time I've ever seen you eating." And I said, "Is it everything you imagined it would be?" And she said, "I just wish I had a camera."

I guess peoples think I'm some kind of character who only comes out at night time and sits on a bar stool drinking beer and babbling and ranting when I'm not shooting pool. I guess they think I'm like some cartoon character who doesn't have to do the mundane, banal things in life like take out the trash, put gas in the car, and put bills in the mailbox and so on and so forth.

Yeah, that would be great, but unfortunately those days are over cuz' ya'heard about my man-servant, dint' ya'? the cap't

P.S. Have ya' ever seen Superman or Batman or one of those guys moppin' the kitchen floor or scrubbin' the toilet? I don't think so. But de cap'm he do all that kinda stuff.

Subject: Vendetta
Date: Tuesday, May 18, 2004 6:22 PM
May 6, 1998. While strolling about the Plaza, I decided to treat myself to a culinary session at the Cheesecake Factory. In the past I had been told by numerous friends and associates to check it out sometime. So I did.

I ordered the Renee Special: a large half sandwich, (turkey with avocado slices,) small soup, and small salad for $5.95. Seemed reasonable. And it was excellent. Very nice presentation. Very tasty. Soup was delicious.

About half way through the meal however, on the way from the salad bowl to my mouth, I dropped a bit of lettuce in my soup. I quickly scooped it out and ate it. But I noticed I had left a small piece clinging to the inside of the bowl and as I was about to clean it up with the tip of my fork, I noticed movement there.

"This is not right" I thought. "These lettuce leaves are supposed to be dead."

Well, on closer examination, it proved to be La Cucaracha. Si. Alive! Stuck on his back on the inside of the bowl, thrashing and kicking wildly.

You know, when one dines at, say, Nichol's Lunch fr'instance, one almost expects some member of the Bug Culture to greet one from their salad, but I thought it rather rude to treat me that way on my maiden voyage, as it were, to The Cheesecake Factory. I had expected better, to say the least.

The more I thought about it though, the more I began to wonder if maybe this was some kind of Kamikaze Cockroach, whose suicidal action was, no doubt, to place some kind of bacterial agent in my salad causing me much discomfort and death and was discovered before he could complete his cowardly mission. Perhaps in retaliation, for numerous of his kin, who I may have dispatched to Bug Paradise over the years thru squashings, mashings and chemical weapons.

So be it. If it's war those Vermin want, it's WAR they'll get!

And I told the manager that too! Unconditional. No quarter. I said, "Fuck it man. They don't realize who they're messing with. I'll kill everyone of the sonsabitches."

He tried to calm me down and to downplay the whole incident.He apologized several times and tried to buy my silence with a Chocolate Kaluha Almond Cheesecake, which I reluctantly agreed to take, although I warned him he could not so easily buy off Captain Hoohah's silence.

He kept acting as though this were some isolated incident rather than part of the Worldwide Cockroach Conspiracy to "get" me that I recognised it to be.

As I sat there eating my Chocolate Kaluha Almond Cheesecake, I couldn't help but notice other folk in my vicinity refused to make eye contact with me, and tried to ignore the whole incident as though nothing untoward were going on. "Yeah, right peoples! Stick yer fuckin' heads in the sand and don't look at what is happening right in front of you!!" And perhaps it was only my imagination, because I don't consider myself to be a paranoid individual, but I thought I could hear a collective sigh of relief upon my egress.

Well, no matter, I will stand alone if need be against the fuckers. All I have to say is this, to los Cucurachas del Mundo, "Fuck you Assholes! I know who you are and I know where you live. Watch your backs!" the cap't

P.S. May 18, 04. Some years later now, I look back at my naivete, and shake my head. What was I thinking? Their daunting numbers were more than I could handle. No matter how many I slaughtered each day; they just kept coming. Ya' gotta' keep in mind that these are the same critters that survived the comet strikes that wiped out most species on the earth. Several times. Even after the colossal climate changes that went on for millions of years these guys emerged from the rubble doing the hokey-pokey. I never had a chance! I'll tell ya' though, It still makes my bile flow and my face turn red with shame to remember the night just a couple of years after this incident, when exhausted from the daily battles, I was finally forced to make a “strategic withdrawal” from my dwelling. I set off a chemical bomb, and while they were temporarily distracted, I slipped away into the night and left no forwarding address. Yeah, I finally had to concede the battle and the field. Now, I have nightmares that one of these days they will find out where I'm living and the Nightmare will become Reality.

Subject: A Morality Fable from YellowCabLand; I call this tale Karmic Kickback
Date: Saturday, May 15, 2004 8:47 PM
Years ago, back in 98', when I wuz driving a cab, I picked up this guy from St. Lukes hospital. He was gay. (not that there's anything wrong with that you unnerstan') He had been in the hospital for a week. His hand had been badly infected as a result of getting mugged.

It seems he was walking along Main on his way to the laundromat, carrying a duffel bag in his right hand and four dollars in his left, when the perp (who says you can't learn anything from watching TV) came up behind him and tried to snatch his money from out of his hand. The gay guy, deciding, I guess, that his laundry was not to be denied, refused to give it up, so the thief bit him. hard and deep, causing the guy to relinquish the cash. and also causing his hand to subsequently become infected, thus sending him to the hospital.

The thief ran down 36th street laughing all the way. HOWEVER, It's very possible he's not still not laughing about it to this day...BECAUSE...the Moral of this story is: DO NOT SEVERELY BITE THE HAND OF A MAN WHO HAS AIDS!! Ha Ha. (even though he may have four dollars in it which you would like to have for your very own) Kinda' Ironic, eh?

If only we could congratulate that young man on his score and say to him, "Yo dude, ENJOY the fruits of your labor" while trying to maintain a straight face. That would be Most Amusing. the cap't

Subject: Further reflections on the smoking ban in bars.
Date: Monday, May 10, 2004 12:38 AM
Although I have no proof to support this suspicion, I strongly suspect that many of those same peoples who suggest that bars be non-smoking places because of the deleterious health hazards of second-hand smoke would scream bloody murder should you suggest to them that you are going to take away their inalienable right to have that cell phone stuck in their ear as they blast thru red lights at 40 mph as a result of their inattention.

That can also affect the health of those peoples who had the misfortune of being in that intersection at the same time. Many studies have suggested a strong correlation to being T-boned by a vacant-minded driver and...Death!! the cap't

Subject: To be smokin' or not
Date: Friday, May 7, 2004 8:19 PM
Ya' prolly read in the paper where last week the city of Lawrence passed an ordinance prohibiting smoking in any public place. This includes bars. In today's paper a Star editorial suggest the same thing for KC.

Look here, if peoples want to have a bar or many bars for that matter, where smoking is not allowed, go right ahead. No problema! Thas perfectly OK with me. Just put a sign on the front door that says, "THIS IS A NON-SMOKING ESTABLISHMENT" and I'll never step inside the joint.

I'll just go to a bar where smoking is allowed, Y'know, a bar where there is a sign notifying peoples that in this particular bar "SMOKING IS ALLOWED.2 Seems like a reasonable solution to that problem to me. If ya' don't want to be bothered by smoky bars, then simply confine yerselves to non-smoking joints. If ya' insist on the right to smoke, in spite of the wealth of information that it's harmful to yer health, then stay the fuck out of non-smoking bars and only patronise smoking joints!

The only problem with this scenario is that the mutherfuckers won't let you, or a businessman who wishes to cater to you and others of yer ilk, have this freedom of choice! No, No, the sonsuvbitches insist that you do it their way. The Assholes! Why should anyone give a shit if there are certain bars where one can smoke? All ya' gotta do to deal with that is; simply stay the fuck out of it!! How difficult would that be?

If they are successful in gettin this bullshit idea passed, I'll just move some place where the peoples aren't so fuckin' Stupid!!! (but I shouldn't have to do that) the cap't

P.S. What exactly is it with DO-GOODERS that they insist on imposing their views on the heathen? Who in the fuck needs em?

Subject: This was the kind of movie I watched as a kid
Date: Friday, May 7, 2004 4:57 PM (from 2/2/04)
Prince Valiant, I checked this movie out from the library yesterday. Ya' can't hardly go wrong there cuz they only cost a dollar. This movie was made in 1954, filmed in Technicolor and Cinemascope (Wow, that Cinemascope is reely somthin!), starring a young scrawny, Robert Wagner as Valiant, the young, impetuous Christian Viking Prince aspiring to become a knight at King Arthur's Round Table so as to fulfill a vow to avenge his fathers removal as King of Scandia by a bunch of pagan, ruffian Vikings.

Janet Leigh (his love interest) and Debra Paget, who both were featured in many a costume drama of the fifties, co-starred.

The suave, silver tongued James Mason played the evil, conniving, traitorous Sir Brack, who was secretly, “the Black Knight," who was in cahoots with Sligon, the leader of the “Bad Vikings” (who had usurped Val's daddy's throne) to overthrow King Arthur, and thus become King of the Realm, which title, he thought was rightfully his.

And finally we had Sterling Hayden, Ha Ha. This is good, yeah, Sterling Hayden played the gruff Sir Gawain, a renowned member of the Round Table, who accepted the young Prince Valiant to be his squire. If you are familiar with Sterling Hayden, that is, if you are 50 years or older, having seen him play the “heavy'' in so many B movies of the time, you would be highly amused, as was I to see him with long red hair, and an English mustache, in a ludicrous knight’s outfit.

You would also get a kick out of Robert Wagner's, black, straight haired page boy wig, with a curl on the bottom. But y'know, it was the fifties. But this movie had everything one expects in this genre.

There were numerous scenes of the four-foot-long horns announcing peoples arrivals, departures, the beginning of jousts, the middle of jousts, the ends of jousts, whatever, they jes liked to blow those horns. Sheeit. No occasion was to small to keep these guys from doing their horn blowing thing. And for some reason, as a kid I always enjoyed that. It didn't matter whether it was a scene from a Roman era movie announcing the arrival of the emperor or a medieval courtyard, for some reason, it was cool. I guess it provided some heraldic flavor or something.

And speaking of jousts, there were plenty of good jousting scenes, which are of course essential to a movie such as this!!

There were several unintentionally comic scenes where the diminutive James Mason, having apparently won the joust and in winning—he also won the unwilling hand in marriage, of the beautiful young princess (Janet Leigh) who was in love with Valiant (although Sir Gawain, was under the mistaken impression that she was actually in love with him; creating lots of dramatic tension. a quite convoluted plot, eh?—would raise the faceplate of his armored helmet to discover, that he had another yet challenger. "Damn!" he would utter in exasperation, "Who in the hell organised this joust anyway. Fucking moron!" and he would snap his faceplate down again in disgust. You could tell he was getting pretty miffed at the way they were jackin' him around, what with all the johnny come latelys gettin' into the joust after he thought he had already pretty much wrapped it up.

Well anyway there was plenty of buckle swashing, and leaping about parapets, and climbing out of prison cells and clamoring about castle walls and burning oil, and so on and so forth. The whole thing was wrapped up with a climatic sword fight between the seasoned sword fighter Sir Brack and the young, and inexperienced Prince Valiant.

Man, there were several times there when I thought Val had bought the farm, but he used his agility and youth to leap and bound out of the way. In the end, he prevailed, although as I said, it looked really grim for a while.

And so as the movie ended, Gawain realised that the young beautiful maiden, was in fact in love with his protege, Val, who had managed to defeat the hooligan Vikings, expose the traitorous Sir Brack (a k a the Black Knight), regain his fathers realm, and so was thus knighted, which had been one of his ambitions, and so they all presumably lived happily ever after.

This was the kind of movie I watched as a kid. The cap't

P.S. Oh yeah, there was a scene there where some of the bad pagan Vikings were looking for Valiant and he slipped into a river and cut a reed with which he breathed thru until they gave up the search, assuming he had drowned. Ha Ha. I cannot even begin to remember how many movies I've seen where some one used this ploy. You've seen em' too. You've seen it in westerns, war movies, well you know, anywhere some one is being searched for and there happens to be a river, lake, pond or mud puddle even.

As a director, you need a way for them to escape, so you do the old underwater reed trick. It always works. Some day though, I'd like to see a movie, where some searcher dude yells, "Hey guys, c'mere. Check this out. He's right here. He's using the old 'breathing thru the reed trick. Ha Ha. Whut kind of chumps does he take us for?"

And then they proceed to string him up.

Subject: That Peace and Brotherhood Thing.
Date: Friday, May 7, 2004 1:53 AM
I can always find a bit of comfort and resolve in the challenging words of the inimitable poet/philosopher, Rodney King! as he so eloquently put it, "CAN'T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?" the cap't~~~~~~

P.S. Bring those words to mind as you are frantically searching yer floorboards looking for that empty bottle of MadDog to hurl thru the windshield of that asshole who just took yer parking place.

Subject: WARNING: Disgusting, revolting bit of information follows
Date: Tuesday, May 4, 2004 7:28 PM
Do not proceed any further if you happen to be a rather sensitive type person...or for that matter...if you just happen to be an ordinary regular person with normal sensitivities, cuz this is just terrible! I mean it.

Now, speaking strictly for myself though, I thought it was rather amusing in a twisted kind of way...but...well, we all know how I am.'s all about a tattoo this guy I know recently acquired. It's like something you might see in the National Lampoon or some other equally dark, irreverent satirical kind of rag. I had seen this guy show this to peoples before and I was always intrigued cuz the reaction was always the same: a dropping of the jaw, a widening of the eyes in surprise and shock, and a loud exclamation. From the gurls, always, "OmiGawwwwd!" in a high pitched squealing kind of way. You know how they do that.

So one night recently my curiosity got the better of me and I asked to see it. He raised up his pant leg and on the outside of his right calf, stretching from the ankle to the knee, was a bright multi-colored tattoo in a kinda psychedelic style. At first I couldn't make out what it was. and then suddenly I saw it! BAM! There it was! A “Eureka” kind of moment.

There were brightly colored flames running the length of his calf, and right in the middle of the flames was a skewer on which three tiny, cartoon-like cherubic babies were impaled. (and the babies were so cute and cuddly looking in spite of the rod running thru their sides) Well, without thinking about it I spontaneously let out a loud guffaw, and I don't guffaw too often. (ask anyone whose ever told me a joke.) I couldn't help it. I know, I know, it's just terrible, but I couldn't help myself.

He told me he was at a mall recently sprawled out on one of the benches and this middle-aged lady sitting there commented on his tattoo and wanted to see it better, so he stretched out his leg, and when she realized what it was, she let out a loud shriek and said, “That's the most disgusting thing I've ever seen. You Are Sick!" and she jumped up and stalked away muttering and fuming.

That scenario got me to chuckling and chortling even more as I got an image of the whole thing
going down. She prolly tried to have him arrested for "Extremely Bad Taste in Public" or somethin' or other.

Anyway, if you should want a tattoo just like this one for yourself, I'm sorry, but the artist who did it only does his stuff one time, and then that design is “retired” and since this particular one is already taken…No Dice! The artist told the guy that he had had that particular work for a couple of years and no one else had shown any interest in having it permanently attached to their bodies.

And so now this dude has it, and you don't! Well, you know the old saying, "The early bird gets the worm!" the cap't........

P.S. By the way, this is great!! This tattoo has a name...thas' right! it's got a name!! Dig this!.... it's called, "SHISH-KA-BABY" Ha Ha and I's just terrible! TERRIBLE! Ha Ha

Subject: "The Piggs of Albany" (5/13/02)
Date: Tuesday, May 4, 2004 7:02 PM
Back in 1960, I was 18 years old and selling encyclopedias door-to-door throughout Georgia. I worked on a road crew out of Macon. Every Monday four or five of us would get in the crew managers car and work a circuit of small towns all over the state, eventually making our way back to Macon.

We would work a town one night and drive down the road 50 or 60 miles to a different little town and so on. One night in Albany, GA, I was assigned to cover this trailer court. After a couple of hours of bouncing on wood, (an old “bookman's” expression), I knocked on this one door, and one of the hugest men I had ever seen, he musta' weighed 450, answered the door. I told him, "Hi, my name is Joe Dreck and I'm doing a survey about TV advertising. Do you folks have a minute to answer a few questions?"

And he asked his wife, who was standing behind him, peering over his shoulder, weighing in easily at 360, "Honey this young feller wants to ast' us sum questions bout' the
TV." And she said, "Why shore."

And so he opened the door and let me in and he said, "My name is Mister Pigg; that's two g's, and this is the missus, Mrs. Pigg," and he offered me his huge paw to shake.

Well, I'm tellin' you, it took all of my will power not to bust out laughing. But I didn't! Not so much as a snicker.

He said, "Whyn't you sit hyere on the sofa, and ast' us all the questions you wanta."

The sofa, like the trailer itself, was propped up on a couple of cinder blocks. The sofa and the TV and a beat up coffee table were the only furnishings in the place so there wasn't really any choice.

So we're standing in front of the sofa and he's on one end, Mrs Pigg is in the middle and I'm on the other end, so we go to sit down simultaneously and all of a sudden WHAM!! BAM!! SPLAT!! the sofa went over backwards, OFF THE CINDER BLOCKS, spilling all three of us over backwards onto our backs on the floor. We're all flailing around, like fish out of water, or in this case, whales, and I hear this loud, keening, wailing noise that at first I took to be a howl of pain, but was instead Mrs Pigg’s rather unusual laughter and Mr. Pigg was guffawing and making these snuffling, grunting noises, just like a... well... just like a pig! No kidding. As was I. All three of us were rolling around on the floor, laughing uncontrollably, trying to get up, which in Mr. and Mrs. Piggs case was no easy matter. I mean, it wasn't like they just bounced right up like a jack-in-the-box or somthin.

When eventually we all three managed to stand up, gasping for breath, we were still laughing and snickering while I helped Mr. Pigg put the sofa back up on it's blocks, still laughing and giggling. It was one of those things where you just couldn't stop, ya' know, cus every time you thought about it, you just started all over again. "Whooooee!" Mr. Pigg exclaimed, which triggered another round of chuckles.

When I finally got my composure back again to be able to speak, there was no way I could have gone thru an hour-long sales pitch, so I just asked them a couple of perfunctory questions, while we were all standing there. Mrs. Pigg offered me some ice tea and cookies, but I declined and thanked them for their time, and told them I had to be on my way. As I was stepping out the door Mr. Pigg said, "Next time ya'll are in Albany, ya'll be sure and stop by, ya'heah!" And I said, "You betcha Mr. Pigg" and I walked out of the Pigg’s life forever.

I have often wondered over the past forty some years if Mr. and Mrs. Pigg have told that story as many times as I have. I'll bet not. In any case, Mr. and Mrs. Pigg of Albany, Ga, you were the friendliest and most gracious of hosts. Thanks for a most enjoyable and memorable evening. It was my pleasure, I assure you. the cap't


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