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Wednesday, November 26, 2003


Happy Thanksgiving, and God Bless Us, Every One, Oh Shit, That's Christmas

In honor of the coming holiday, during which Bunsen will be traveling to an undisclosed exotic locale, enjoy this golden oldie from a previous Thanksgiving:

We all have friends and family that we would like to see over the holiday, with whom we'd like to have turkey and all the seasonal accoutrements. Yes, there might be some alcohol involved. But who doesn't sit down and have a couple of beers while watching the big Thanksgiving football games (a fine tradition), after a couple of mimosas while watching the Macy's parade? And who doesn't have a cocktail while eating hors d'ouerves, waiting for the turkey to cook? Then there are a few glasses of wine over dinner, to complement the flavor of the turkey, stuffing, and cranberry sauce. There may even be a nip of bourbon in the coffee during the delicious dessert.

And because Thanksgiving is a time to get caught up with family and friends, a trip to a local tavern for a nightcap might be on the agenda. They're probably featuring a pumpkin ale from the local microbrewery, or maybe a Christmas blend with cinnamon overtones delightfully playing against its hoppy flavor. And nothing helps cleanse the palate like a small helping of one's favorite flavored liquer in those cute little glasses; given the approaching holidays (don't forget, Friday after Turkey Day is the busiest shopping day of the year!), peppermint schnaaps will have your tongue dancing in anticipation of candy cane treats soon to come.

By now, the bartender's been well-tipped and is feeling a little generous. He gets the next round, serving up a line of "Turkey Tequila" shots for you and your family and friends. One of your friends from Massapequa is so excited, he may want to share a favorite from his hometown, the Long Island Ice Tea. By now, an ice tea sounds very refreshing and a chance to take a breather and loosen the belt tightened by one-too-many helping of yams. The tea goes down smoothly and quickly, and maybe another one is ordered -- Thanksgiving digestion is a thirsty business.

In the corner, the jukebox might be playing Springsteen's classic "Glory Days," and you and your friends engage in a merry sing-a-long, clapping each other on the shoulder as you harmonize. One of your friends has always misheard one of the lyrics, mistaking the actual lyric "speedball" for "fastball" (yes, you realize baseball is out of season, but there are no good football songs), and you gently correct him. He insists he's correct; he's never been good at admitting he's wrong.

You are probably ready to let it go, but your glass is full again, and it's always nagged at you how he sings the wrong lyric, every single time. You offer to play the song again and have everyone listen, but the juke's already stuffed with holiday dollars, so you'll never get to hear it again. He'll just have to take your word for it. He more strenously insists that it has to be "fastball" -- what the hell's a "speedball," anyway? There's no pitch called a speedball. A speedball's for cocaine. Maybe the song's all about a coke binge now, huh? You counter with the "suicide machine" in "Born to Run" -- there's no real suicided machine on Highway Six, you don't have to be so literal. Springsteen's a poet, and "speedball" is much more evocative than "fastball." You tell him he's got no poetry in his soul; after all, he's an accountant, and there's not a lot of room for creativity on an Excel spreadsheet. He probably answers that since you don't actually have a job right now, that you have plenty of time to look up Springsteen lyrics and think about what words for pitches are most provocative. You retort that he doesn't know the difference between "evocative" and "provocative" (your glass is again full of refreshing iced tea) and that a guido from Long Island is probably too busy stirring his mama's pasta sauce to try to have an intelligent thought about music, and perhaps his St. Christopher's medal is a little bit too tight around his neck.

Maybe he gives you a shove. Your pussy Hollywood ass has gotten a little soft, hasn't it? he asks. How's the screenplay coming? with a derisive laugh. Oh, it's coming along just fine, you fuck. You should work on one, then maybe you can move out of your parent's house and learn to do your own laundry. Hey, fuck you, I'm saving for a condo. Yeah? I hope it's got two bedrooms so your fat fucking ass will have a place to sleep. Did you just try to hit me? Nah, I was just brushing something off your face. Here, I think there's a little gravy on your lip, let me clean you up, you piece of shit. I'm surprised you missed a spot, you usually eat all the way down to the fucking tablecloth. Fuck you! I'm going to your house and fuck your mom on top of some leftovers in ten minutes. Yeah, my face is leaving in five -- tell your mom to be on it.

Maybe your friends calm you down, take you into the bathroom to splash some water on your face. You're looking for your tea. There's ice in it to help cool you down. Your friend from Long Island is in the next stall, crouched over the bowl and coughing loudly. You think to yourself, at least I can hold my booze. You get dropped off at home shortly afterwards, after a couple of apologies and a hearty hug from your temporary adversary. His breath smells vaguely of sick. You'll see him tomorrow night at Riley's. When you get home, there's leftover turkey in the fridge. It makes for a nice snack before bed.

See also: Turducken.

Tuesday, November 25, 2003


One Chickenhawk, Two Chickenhawk, Red Chickenhawk, Blue Chickenhawk

Tonight, I defy the world by refusing to offer a negative review of The Cat in the Hat in a Seussian rhyme scheme, mostly because watching Mike Myers gives me hemorrhoids.

Instead, I offer a Seussified version of Michael Jackson's first official communiqué through the new website he's um, erected as a clearinghouse of information about his legal troubles.

To my fans, friends,
And family too,
I write this letter
For all and for you.

My lawyers have told me
To keep my mouth shut.
So I put up this website
To answer the boy-slut.

Three w's dot hotboyz dot com
Was already taken.
Besides the six-packs on there
Are too old for my bacon.

The charges against me
Are terribly serious,
I am tired, outraged,
mystified, delirious.

The little boy lies,
He roils and rants.
My magic glove never did
Find its way in his pants.

These stories they tell
Are evil lie-missiles.
I get so upset
My nose hole a-whistles.

OK, I admit it
We played Hop On King of Pop.
But just ask Liz Taylor or Lisa Marie --
I'm a harmless, bleached fop.

The lawyers are calling
They say I shouldn't be talking.
But rhyming is fun,
Almost good as Macaulay-stalking.

The llamas are crying
The chimps are atwitter
Out on 3 million bucks bail with time on my hands
Do you need a good babysitter?

Because it's really hard to rhyme "pedophile."

Monday, November 24, 2003


Listen Up Dept.

Behold the creamy goldness of Teetfist.

Your ears will thank me, your eyes worship me, and your sense of smell will pretty much remain indifferent.

If the tune "The Oncoming War Between Humans and Robots" doesn't fill you with existential dread and prompt you to smash all electronic equipment in your home to powder, listen again, and prepare the hammer. It will.

Friday, November 21, 2003


A Joyless Exercise in Exploiting Celebrity Misery, But Hey, That's What I Do

Michael Jackson Song Titles That Will Conveniently Double as His Prison Bitch Name

-- "Billie Jean" [Thriller]
-- "Dirty Diana" [Bad]
-- "Girlfriend" [Off the Wall]
-- "The Girl is Mine" [Thriller]
-- "PYT" (Pretty Young Thing) [Thriller]
-- "Liberian Girl" [Bad]
-- "Albino Man Barbie" [Dangerous B-side]
-- "Sexy Sexy Nose Hole Jackie" [Japanese Import]

Michael Jackson Song Titles That Take on a Decidedly Sinister Spin in Prison

-- "Leave Me Alone" [Bad]
-- "Don't Stop Til You Get Enough" [Off the Wall]
-- "Get on the Floor" [Off the Wall]
-- "Jam" [Dangerous]
-- "Give in to Me" [Dangerous]
-- "You Rock My World" [Invincible]
-- "I Most Certainly Did Not Drop That Bar of Soap, Sir" [Forever Michael Remasters]
--"(Even If I Didn't) Drop That Bar of Soap, Sir (You're Still Gonna Do It, Aren't You?)" [Bad Studio Sessions]
-- "(That Swatstika Tattoo) Really Brings Out Your Eyes" [Bad -- The Interview Disk]
-- "Your Love Hurts a Lot Less the Fourteenth Time" [Number Ones Bonus Track]

Thursday, November 20, 2003


Dept. of Incarceration: Erstwhile King of Pop Edition

Disclaimer: This is America, and all alleged molesty billionaire pop-stars are innocent until proven guilty by a court of law, prevailing popular opinion, or coverage in the mass media.

A Proposed Itinerary for Michael Jackson's First Day in Federal Prison

8:56 a.m.: Arrive at correctional facility. Place zipper-riddled Member's Only Jacket and single white, sequined glove, and most realistic prosthetic nose (suitable for Star magazine cover close-ups) in envelope for safekeeping during stay in prison and return upon release. Receive prison-issue orange jumpsuit.

9:15 a.m.: Impromptu orientation on prison life in warden's office. Comply with inappropriate request by warden to sign copy of "Thriller" album for 10-year-old grandson.

9:32 a.m.: Warden excuses himself to go to restroom; anal rape by inmate filing rejected clemency applications.

9:44 a.m.: Escort to cell in center of general population. Sign autographs for scores of inmates shouting declarations of their fandom that sound suspiciously like ominous sexual overtures.

9:47 a.m.: Arrive at cell. Meet cellmate, currently serving consecutive life sentences for strangling local parish priest over suspicions of sexual misconduct with altar boys.

10:07 a.m.: Briefly commiserate with pointedly silent cellmate over Tommy Mottola's plot to destroy once-legendary pop career by underpromoting "Invincible."

11:30 a.m.: Report for in-house job at prison laundry. Fold towels. Discover that it's still possible to fellate shift supervisor at shiv-point while stuffed into dryer.

12:30 p.m.: Lunch in cafeteria. Eat with representative of skinhead faction that interprets efforts to bleach pigment from skin as rejection of race. Alienate skinhead with insistence that cotton candy from concession stand next to Neverland Tilt-a-Whirl is much yummier than lukewarm mash potatoes.

2:30 p.m.: Excercise in yard chasing inmates playing keep-away with prosthetic nose. Unconvincingly brag about former sexual relationship with Lisa Marie Presley over contraband cigarettes; unfortunate choice of boast phrase involving "tapping that ass" gives inmates inspiration for immediate sodomy involving barbells.

4:00 p.m.: Awake from total ego-preserving psychological shutdown and report to infirmary. Fill out triplicate request form for padded seating ring normally prescribed to hemorrhoid sufferers.

5:00 p.m.: Trade padded seating ring to gang banger in exchange for keeping ear canal virginity for at least one night.

6:30 p.m.: Dinner in cafeteria. Remark that unlike prison meatloaf, "Neverland meatloaf" is actually chocolate ice cream served on a bed of Belgian waffles and covered in powdered cinammon. Sign copy of "Bad" for hulking inmate wearing contraband eyeliner.

7:30 p.m.: Return to cell for lights out. Cellmate explains that seemingly unoccupied bottom bunk is where his rage against sex offenders sleeps.

8:30 p.m.: Confusion when cellmate is allowed by correctional officers to take a constitutional stroll outside of cell. Receive visit from hulking inmate wearing contraband eyeliner. Learn that signing copy of "Bad" was one-week contract for sexual indentured servitude.

10:00 p.m.: Wonder how long before monkey-wrangler realizes payroll funds were frozen by judge and abandons caretaking of Bubbles. Try to get comfortable using base of stainless steel commode as pillow. Ruminate on irony in titling an album "Invincible." Exhaust colorful euphemisms for poetically-justified prison rape. Hum self to sleep with melody line to "Say Say Say." Realize how strange name Macaulay sounds when repeated over and over. Find self unable to sleep.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003


Feed Me

Due to aggravated sunspot activity over Southern California, my home WiFi network accidentally intercepted the pre-vocalized synaptic feed between Britney Spears' brain and mouth during her Monday Tonight Show appearance . It's recorded here, predictably presented in italics to distinguish the scattered feed from the stainless steel prose I bring to you on a daily basis.

OK, when the music stops I have to talk to Jay..Jay Leno...maybe I'll wait for him to ask a question first...I should probably set the record straight here...I so totally did not overdose over the weekend with some porn star...Good, he's laughing, no one thinks that I overdosed, which I so totally did not do, America...I'm so glad the virgin cat is out of the bag...I wish he'd ask me a question about that...there's got to be at least one 45 year old guy that hasn't gotten a boner from hearing about my virginity...maybe not anymore...if only Justin had been my first and not the dishwasher at the Crab Shack in Baton Rouge when I was 14 God I couldn't get that crabby smell out of my hair for like a week...Yeah I'll date older guys...the oldest guy I dated was 68 which by talk show math will come out as 38 but he totally didn't count because his yacht was in international waters and I threw up over the side immediately afterwards...Totally check out my feet! We're talking about my feet and my cute little feet tattoos! Foot tattoos? There's more than one so it's totally feet tattoos...God I hope the tattoo guy didn't write something dirty on my feet tattoos since I totally don't speak a word of Maori...I am now going to answer the most inane question in the history of interpersonal communications, regarding which food I would consume if I could consume only one food exclusively for the rest of my days...and I would totally eat only mashed taters! So totally...Yes, I want to get married and have kids and whatnot, but not for a couple of years until my therapist and I work through my crippling fear of tiny humans trying to escape my uterus...I am pretty sure that it's time that I take off my top and smash my goodies up against some glass or a wall with my nipples barely covered and have Rolling Stone or Vanity Fair or, whoa, Better Homes and Gardens snaps some pics and run some thematic variation on *not that innocent* I objectifying myself by referring to my breasts as goodies? Would I really think that? Has any woman ever labeled parts of her female anatomy as goodies? I might as well go all the way and think about smashing my "goodies" up against something totally transparent if I'm going to cater to adolescent male fantasies...or on something slathered in whip cream...somewhere there is a rerun of Suddenly Susan on...that John Allen Mohammed guy was so totally guilty, I mean come on...that Clay Aiken is about as sexy as tofu stir fry...It's been a really long time since I answered a question...Oh, that's because it's time for me to dance...I guess I better think something provocative about the Paris Hilton sex tapes before I go...but it's pretty funny that she's totally named after a hotel...if think the Paris Hilton would fuck the Marseilles Four Seasons if it had to choose one hotel to fuck for the rest of its life...Thank God for sunspot activity or the world would be a boring place, you know?

Friday, November 14, 2003


One More Time, With Feeling, in Barely Adequate Night-Vision

I'd barely finished squinting through my thirtieth consecutive viewing of the Paris Hilton sex tape when word on the dirty boulevard that is the internet came down that yet another Paris Hilton sex tape is circulating. This time Paris, former Playmate Nicole Lenz, and I-hardly-remember-him-as-an-MTV-VJ/now-you're-telling-me-he's-an-actor-too? Simon Rex are featured joining in tripartite sexual congress, activities otherwise known by the technical term "three-way."

Inevitably and regrettably, all of the hubbub surrounding the hotel heiress and her appetite for videotaped coitus will soon reach the computer screens of America's classrooms, language labs, and lightly-supervised, unstructured after-school programs. And it's our responsibility as caretakers to equip the young with the knowledge they need to navigate this tricky time.

To that end, please distribue the following information immediately.

How to Talk to Your Kids About the Paris Hilton Sex Video

1. Start from the Beginning

Explain to your children that when two adults love each other very much, they need a special way to express that love. This explanation need not involve a graphic description of how exactly adults go about expressing their love. But it is important to tell them that when the two people that love each other are a party-girl heiress socialite with an upcoming reality television show and a guy who's been burned by a short-lived marriage to a sexually voracious celebrity who coincidentally also had ties to FOX, sometimes you need to capture that expression of love on video and leak it to the public so that people will know there's nothing wrong with your manhood, okay? If your child is particularly precocious, you may choose to inform him of the merits of bringing a lawsuit against the other participant to make it look as if you didn't pass anything to Page Six or

2. Patiently Answer Their Questions

Expect that children are going to have a lot of questions; the period after watching the video is a very confusing time. Matter-of-factly answer their queries about why Rick is leaning against some pillows and rubbing himself while Paris is catting around on the edge of the bed (a guy needs some time to recover when he's going all night), whether it's OK to answer a cellphone call when you're about to be taken from behind (it's not, it kills the mood if it's your parents calling), and why you might leave the television on in the background while taping (watching Ralph and Norton always helps you go longer, get off my back already). Children will appreciate your honesty and patience with their curiosity.

3. Prepare Them for the Future, When You Might Not Be Around

Let's face it, you can't be everywhere with your children to shield them from the realities of modern life. It's better to arm kids with knowledge so that they can make informed decision when you're not there. All of this attention for the Paris tape is going to lead to a flood of sex tapes of other celebrities trying to get their names back onto the public's lips. Let them know which tapes are worth their time -- Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman, yes; Billy Baldwin and the overly-muscular chick with the hyper-thyroidic eyes from "Paradise Hotel," take a pass.

And when it's time for your kids to engage in a little healthy experimentation in front of the camera, let them know that a bed bathed in the gentle, warm glow of candles is cinematographically more desirable than a grainy, green, night-vision effect. They'll want their tapes to look more like an Adrian Lyne film than a Gulf War smart-bomb video. And don't micromanage on the subject of positions. Your guidance is important, but there are some things that are better left to trial and error.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003


Another Dispatch Regarding America's Favorite Boudoir Film

Let me be the first to claim that I was on the other end of that cell phone coitus interruptus in the Paris Hilton tape and post my transcipt of the conversation:

[Cell phone rings.]

Paris: Hello? Daddy?

Bunsen: Can the dirty talk right now, baby. I gotta talk fast, stay with me, from what I hear about Rick, we don't have much time here. Listen, I got the satellite feed. First of all, I told you to use more candles for light. This night-vision thing is going to make half of America think that they're masturbating to a bad X-files episode. Also, try to keep yourself in the frame as much as possible. No one wants to see a Rick Solomon tape, dig? Later we can have PR leak that it was Colin Farrell.

Solomon [off camera]: Fuck the phone!

Paris: Gotta go!

Bunsen: Don't neglect the balls. You have a public to think of.

[The call is disconnected, and B-list sexual history is made.]


A Thought Over Coffee

For East Coast Viewers, A Thought Before a Nice Sandwich

It's always really embarassing when I'm stopped at a red light and a fellow motorist catches me talking along to a thoughtful piece of commentary on NPR.

Also, I'm picking my nose.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003


Scenes from a Hotel Heiress' Boudoir Film

"Just because the camera adds ten pounds doesn't mean that you have to go purge, baby."

"I hope that the Fox pop-up promo for my new show, 'The Simple Life,' premiering Tuesday, Dec. 5th at 8:30 pm, doesn't cover up my ass."

"Who's my daddy? Would you be fucking me if it weren't the daughter of real estate magnate Rick Hilton and the great-granddaughter of hotel magnate Conrad Hilton?"

"If you call me Nicky one more time, I'm going to send you down to the Courtyard by Marriott where she and Pauly Shore are making their tape!"

"Yeah, I agree, Nicole Richie really is kind of a two-bagger."

"Calling room service to the Paris Hilton Room 69!"
"Umm, this is like totally missionary, dude."

"To anyone who eventually comes into possession of this tape... Please, please immediately send a copy to Bunsen."

Monday, November 10, 2003


A Monday Overshare

Today, I am test-driving my first pair of Boxer-Briefs.

I find that each time I need to relieve my bladder, it's not unlike extricating myself from a strait jacket. Good thing I had sown a hatpin into the lining of my pants.


Making Toast With: Haley Joel Osment

When Haley Joel Osment arrives in my kitchen wearing a sailor suit, I have no idea why. I know only one thing: he's here to make toast with me. I immediately take him to the pantry where he selects a loaf of five-grain. I have a theory about the kind of person that makes toast with five-grain; in fact I have theories about any kind of bread you might select for making toast. For now I will say only that five-grain toasters are trying to prove something. As I am momentarily lost in my own thoughts about what precisely the coal-eyed, child actor/cinematic prodigy is trying to prove, he tosses the loaf at my chest, shaking me from my cogitation, and helps himself to a seat at the kitchen table.

"First things first," he says, jerking a finger toward the aft living room, where his mother sits poring over the latest Lucky magazine. "If you even mention the name Kevin Spacey, she'll pull me out of here so fast these saddle shoes will leave scorch marks on your floor." The mention of his "Pay It Forward" co-star momentarily darkens his preternaturally rosy complexion. It brightens again when I assure him that my agenda includes only toast and conversation that doesn't involve Kevin Spacey.

"No Spacey!" he yells into the other room, then hops off of his chair to shut the door to the kitchen. "OK, she won't bother us."

I gesture toward the bread, inviting him to fill my four-slice Williams Sonoma Brownmaster with his chosen five-grain. He ignores my offer and instead pulls a pack of menthol Marlboros from somewhere inside the recesses of his sailor suit.

"What?" He asks with a tone of confrontation. "Oh, the sailor get-up. Here's the deal: Mom thinks that it's absolutely crucial that I don't miss out on my childhood," He lights his cigarette on my eight-burner Viking range and inhales all the way to his knee socks. "She thinks kids are supposed to wear sailor suits once in a while, so I wear the fu--- oh yeah, kids don't swear either. Keep the one with the control of the trust happy, you get me?" He jams a knowing, painfully sharp elbow into my ribs a couple of times.

Despite my repeated nonverbal cues that he should be preparing the slices of five-grain bread that I've arrayed in front of him for toasting, he goes on puffing. I make something of a show out of collecting the toast and placing it in the Brownmaster, exhaling loudly as I press the lever on the toaster.

He stubs out a cigarette halfway through, the second time he's done it. I'd ignored the first time because I was hovering over the toasting bread, but this time he sees reads the curiosity in my furrowed brow.

"It seems so sad to burn something down so fast, you know? Why not put it out when there's something left?" I forget about the toast for an instant as I'm drawn in by the minty sting of menthol in my nose, the wisps of smoke rising up around the kitchen table, smoke that seems to seep directly from those anthracite eyes. But I'm jarred back to the task at hand by the sound of finished toast rattling to life in the chambers of the Brownmaster.

I set a plate of perfectly browned five-grain in front of him, along with a range of jams, marmalades, and butter. I've found that a celerity subject's selection of spreads is just as instructive as the type of bread for toasting.

He frowns. "Sorry, guy. Mom would freak, but I can't do the carbs just now. Let's pretend that I ate some, I'll have a few more drags on this butt, and I'll split?" He's giving me the look that he gave the parents in "A.I." just before they abandoned him in the woods. I can't deny his request. He tears the middle out of two of the slices, leaving only the husks of crust on his plate, and throws the bread in the trash. "In case she checks," he explains.

I nod. He stubs out his cigarette, again halfway through, and freshens his breath with a blast of Binaca. He opens the kitchen door and shouts back loudly, "Bye, Mr. Bunsen! Thanks for the awesome toast!" I watch as he enthusiastically grabs his mother's arm and skips towards the front of the compound, where my door-answering girl has already prepared for their exit. I wave feebly as they disappear.

I look down at the toast on my own plate, so complete next to Haley's discarded crusts, his half-smoked cigarettes.

I've never been a five-grain guy. I dump my slices into the trash bin, twists of menthol lingering in the kitchen air like question marks.

Every so often, Bunsen invites interesting guests into his home to sup on toast and spreads. He writes about these encounters in Making Toast With:, our newest feature.

Friday, November 07, 2003


You Deserve a List Today

And the final installment of Retroactively Declared List Week:

Things That I Have Recently and Unexpectedly Won in the McDonald's Monopoly Game

--A McLean Deluxe and a delightful afternoon among digestion-friendly pastel hues and a Muzak soundtrack of hit Toni Braxton singles;

--A sausage McGriddle and a newfound sense of self-worth;

--A super-size Double Quarter Pounder meal and mainstream acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle as long as they occur in a television sitcom;

--A nagging suspicion that I should have surrendered my seat to the elderly woman standing next to me, clutching an eighty-five cent cup of coffee, shame that I realize that I don't want to give up my seat, then relief as her rheumatoid arthritis flares up, causing her to drop the cup and retreat from the restaurant, absently rubbing the back of her hand and muttering about the humidity, and me entertaining the fleeting thought that I'd caused her arthritis attack with my mind;

--Two-thirds of a DVD player (does the Ventnor Avenue gamepiece even exist?) and a devil-may care attitude about unrest in Baghdad;

--A daydream involving a circa-1978 Charo and a carafe of tapioca pudding, and small fries;

--Ten seconds of inexplicable rage so intense that I wonder if I am strangling drifters while I am supposedly sleeping, and a coupon for a dozen McRib sandwiches during their next limited run;

--A Fish Sandwich

Thursday, November 06, 2003


Today's Lucky Numbers: The One, The One, The One

Retroactively Declared List Week continues as...

A Longtime Fortune Cookie Writer Reviews "The Matrix Revolutions"

~You will be most unexpressive in your close-ups.~

~Pseudo philosophical and metaphysical mumbo jumbo makes you long for endless slow-motion kung-fu.~

~Your face will appear long and dull like underripe banana in 16:9 aspect ratio.~

~You are about to come into unexpected wealth but suffer a 46 percent dropoff in the second weekend.~

~You are comforted by the thought that although machines rule the future and harvest human beings for fuel, at least they gave the crippled black guy from "Oz" a new set of legs.~

~You shall express a preference for the elegant existential angst of two time-traveling youths in a phone booth to the incomprehensible ramblings of chopsocky undertakers brawling over techno music.~

~SPOILER ALERT: You will remain confused about the fate of mankind despite the monosyllabic messiah's Christlike sacrifice and the sudden appearance of Spielbergian everything's-going-to-be-okay rainbows.~

~Italics and tildes will not adequately disguise the fact that you are writing nothing but lists this week. Perhaps you should retroactively declare this something like "List Week" to cover up for your lack of compelling content.~

~Help! I am trapped in a Fortune Cookie Factory with nothing to watch but the deleted scenes from "The Matrix: Reloaded" DVD!~

Tuesday, November 04, 2003



When CBS decided today to bend to neoconservative pressure and not air the controversial miniseries about Ronald Reagan, the greatest United States President of the 1980's, disbelieving spoons clattered down next to tapioca puddings in retirement homes across the nation. I feel that it is my duty to inform the public about the most shocking scenes of the sainted Reagan Presidency that we might never get to see.

The Totally Most Shockingest Things Dramatized in the CBS Ronald Reagan Miniseries

--The President and Donald Regan, Reagan's Treasury Secretary and later Chief of Staff, exchanging misdelivered pieces of interoffice mail -- leading up to a climactic scene where a gift-wrapped Nancy, reclining in a giant chocolate eclair, is misdelivered to Donald's office.

--Reagan often loudly and derisively calling Mikhail Gorbachev "that splotchy-head, glasnosty scumbag"

--The Cabinet referring to the President's occasional incontinence problems as "trickle-down economics"

--A dream sequence reveals Reagan fantasized about gaining biblical knowledge of Mary Magdalene as a coping mechanism for Nancy's canoodling with Frank Sinatra in the Lincoln Bedroom

--Reagan has an anxiety attack after he inadvertently knocks over his omnipresent jar of jelly beans, thus allowing Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger's thought rays to penetrate the Oval Office walls; a nuclear bombing of South Dakota is only avoided when a "trickle-down" episode delays Reagan's recitations of ICBM launch codes

--A compassionate Reagan donates 13 electoral votes to Walter Mondale for "sticking with that tomato" Geraldine Ferraro in the 1984 election

--An overburdened Reagan delegates important economic policy decisions to a Teddy Ruxpin playing a tape of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears"

Monday, November 03, 2003


Quickly Now

Assorted Snappy Headlines Regarding NBC's Friday Cancellation of "Coupling"

--NBC Turns Cancellation Hose on "Coupling" Dog

--"Coupling" Decoupled From Sched

--Not So Hot: Wildfires More Popular Than "Coupling"

--I Will Now Have to Listen to Mumbly British Accents if I am to Get My Fill of Supposedly Sexy Banter

--Crap Flushed

Maybe they should have tried the Bunsen version.

[I know that you are all breathlessly awaiting the details of my trick-or-treating excursion with Haley Joel Osment, and quite likely tearing out your hair as you repeatedly jab the refresh button in hopes in will appear. Keep jabbing. It will be there. Unless, of course, I decide to regale you with my trip to Disney's California Adventure first.]

About this site

This is the internet home of Mark Lisanti, a Los Angeles writer sometimes known as Bunsen. He is the founding editor of Defamer, a weblog about Hollywood, where he now serves in the nebulous capacity of "editor-at-large."
If You Like Bunsen, Then You'll Love Bunsen