Archive for the ‘pop culture’ Category

On Wisconsin: A Smartass Guide To Its Natural And Unnatural Wonders

August 17, 2012

Wisconsin Dells Duck Pilot Dave and Mabes

“A Smartass Guide To Its Natural And Unnatural Wonders” is the fifth chapter of The Gaytheist Gospel Hour‘s seven part series “On Wisconsin.”

What drew us to Wisconsin, you ask?  Why, the quasi-untamed beauty of its wilderness!  The bathwater lake!  The quartzite bluffs!  The bugspray-tinged fresh air!  What kind of question is that, anyway? Have the last three years’ worth of camping vacation posts failed to convince you that we’re quasi-rugged and outdoorsy?  Go back to start and learn who you’re dealing with.  The rest of you (love you both!) know exactly what you’re dealing with: a quasi-rugged outdoorsy type who also happens to be a smartass.   Any smartass can tell you: smartassery is the psychic armor that protects one’s rich, creamy center from emotional annihilation at the hands of this terrifying world.  It’s true!  As a smartass, I must protect myself from those I love most because in giving them my sensitive little heart, I’ve also given them the power to destroy me, you see.   So I make fun of almost everything and everyone I love and care about, pretty much in self defense.   I just can’t help myself.  This probably makes me an asshole for all I know, but I’d like to think I made the right choice. (more…)

On Wisconsin: Ochsner Park Zoo

August 11, 2012

“Ochsner Park Zoo” is the second chapter in The Gaytheist Gospel Hour‘s seven part series “On Wisconsin.”  It is dedicated to Amy Winehouse, that guy from “Jackass”, and Laura Norman (RIP just in case).

A little after the mid-way point of our visit, a severe thunderstorm rolled into Devil’s Lake.  Following the storm, the skies took on the look and joie de vivre of a Brillo Pad that’s seen better days.  The wind smacked of sweater weather, sending our plans to spend the day on the beach tumbling down the Ice Age campsite black top like so many bottle rocket duds.  What better way to kick off this day of dashed hopes and depressing weather than a visit to Baraboo’s Ochsner Park Zoo?   “Someone told me it’s all happening in the zoo“, Paul Simon sang long ago.  If by “it” he meant “obesity, malaise, violence, dreams deferred, and a bonus existential sucker punch”, then I, too, do believe it.  I do believe it’s true.  Let us now roll the highlight reel: (more…)

The Lost Genius Of Robin Gibb

May 28, 2012

This is a story about alienation and beauty.  It is a story of thoughtless cruelty and heartbreak.  It’s the story of tempestuous youth in 1979.  It’s set on a school bus, mostly, and it has actual villains.  It is at its heart a story that is laughably sad, and sadly laughable.  (We are talking about puberty, after all.)  But it’s mostly about the voice of Bee Gee Robin Gibb: its haunting desolation, its exquisite ache, the hope despite hopelessness it conveyed.  It’s about how I came to find solace within the voice of Robin Gibb when I was young and the inspiring legacy he left behind.   I hope to do it justice. (more…)

The Misery of Dark Shadows

May 13, 2012

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Last week, I watched Tim Burton take one of my favorite TV shows, “Dark Shadows”, crack it open, gut it of nearly all of its original charms, stuff it with seventies jokes and sex until it was as bloated and corrupt as Last Gasp Elvis, and then he sent it roaring across the silver screen like the leisure-suited horror show monster it was—killing beloved characters, and leaving the original narrative landscape a charred wasteland.  I was horrified.  I was angry.  I was in misery: misery with a capital “M”.  That’s right: I was in Misery, specifically the part where Annie Wilkes, outraged by the shabby script of a cliffhanger, totally flips out right there in the theatre.  As Burton puppeteered the mouth of  Barnabus Collins to recite “I’m a picker/I’m a grinner/I’m a lover/And I’m a sinner”, I was right there with Annie, yelling “Barnabus Collins never quoted a cockadoodie Steve Miller song!!!” (more…)

The Key Lime Cove Chronicles: Part Two

December 29, 2011

Hunting for “MONNNNN-sters”

RipTide Reef Arcade“With 8,000 square feet of fun, crafted in age-appropriate zones, there’s interactive fun for everyone.”– KLC Glossy Propaganda

After a towel-down, a wardrobe change, and a dinner of contraband homemade pizza, we took Mabel to the RipTide Reef Arcade.  All of the elements connoting the Vegas zeitgeist (minus the alcohol, hookers, and Cirque Du Make It Stop) are evident at The Rip: the onslaught of flashing lights, pulsating “ooncha ooncha” club beats, the fabulous prizes.  The mission statement of The Rip is simple: play games, win tickets, trade the tickets for unbelievably cheap, eminently breakable prizes. (more…)