Just one look, that's all it took
Phillipe & Jorge were quite impressed by presidential hopeful John McCain's
claim, while on the campaign trail in New Hampshire, that he can spot superior
behaviorists merely by their mannerisms. More so when we learn that when McCain
wasn't spending his time in the military at the Hanoi Hilton, he was busy
playing "spot the fag" aboard ship and on the local base, with what he claims
was a high rate of success.
We all know this is no great feat, as all homosexuals look and act exactly
alike. Much in the same way, we have also learned from the wisdom of political
operatives and pundits this season that all blacks vote the same way. But just
to show that he hasn't lost his touch, McCain went to the local police station
after making his claim and immediately picked RuPaul out of a lineup -- the
remainder of which consisted entirely of Granite State dairy farmers.
Your superior correspondents hasten to add that while Senator McCain says he
can identify a gay person "by behavior and by attitudes," your superior
correspondents have always been able to identify a right-wing Republican nutbag
by his or her behavior and attitudes. To be more precise, the behavior is that
of an all-fours troglodyte and the attitude is marked by intolerance and a lack
of compassion and understanding.
Vo Dilun time
It's no secret to long-time residents of the Biggest Little that when it comes
to public works, there's real-world time and then there's Vo Dilun time.
Perfect examples of Vo Dilun time would be how long it takes to address such
issues as the old Jamestown Bridge or Providence's Masonic Temple. Then there's
the Providence Place Mall, which had its "grand opening" last year with about
half the stores uncompleted and unopened. And who could ever forget how long it
took to complete the highway work around Olneyville a few years back? It's a
miracle that any businesses in that end of town were able to survive the wait
for that little project to be completed.
Our current source of irritation is the water main problem near the corner of
Point and Eddy Streets. A break in the water line that spewed wet stuff six
stories into the air a week before Christmas has still not been mended a month
after the fact. Diminished automobile access is doing a number on all the swell
little restaurants in the area (Jake's, Olga's, the Cactus Grille, etc.), as
well as causing headaches for those who depend on the services of Planned
Parenthood. When exactly will this be fixed? We remember that soon after the
accident, city officials were claiming that it should only take a day or two to
clean up. A cop on detail told our editor it would be two weeks. City officials
then quickly retreated from their original position and said it would be a
couple of weeks. It's a month later and we still have no idea when the street
will be fully accessible.
And what's the deal with the fence around Burnside Park downtown across from
the Biltmore and next to the Fleet skating rink? A chain link fence went up
there last fall, around the time of the Gravity Games -- a temporary structure,
we were led to believe. Now it appears to be a permanent fixture, restricting
access to this verdant little patch that, we assume, was intended for people to
enjoy. Much as we love Providence's new look, these little inconveniences are
driving your superior correspondents batty.
Your lyin' eyes
While it's bad enough that today's network TV news is absolutely abysmal in
what it selects as, and how it covers, "news" events -- is Madonna's marriage
really on the rocks -- it appears that things are getting even worse than we
P&J are referring, of course, to the New York Times' front-page
story of January 12, which detailed how CBS digitally imported images into
their news broadcasts -- superimposed images that are not really there, but
which are ads for Walter Cronkite's old employer. While the topper thus far has
been the network's New Year's Eve placement of a CBS news logo on the General
Motors Building in Times Square (which effectively covered the NBC Jumbotron
and a Budweiser beer billboard), the technology has also been used to insert
CBS logos on the sides of other buildings, on the fountain at the Plaza Hotel,
on the back of a horse-drawn carriage and in the center of the Wollman Skating
Rink in Central Park.
Neither NBC, ABC, nor CNN is deigning to dupe their viewers with this
shameless technique. But we're sure that students of journalistic ethics will
be pleased to hear Steve Friedman, executive producer of CBS' The Early
Show, exult, "Everyday we have a different way to do it . . . We haven't
even scratched the surface yet." And what of the rapidly slipping news chief
Mr. "What is the frequency, Kenneth?" and his crusading defense of the
integrity of his broadcasts? Well, Dan Rather knew the technology was being
used, but, "These are not things he needs to worry about [!?!]," said Eric
Shapiro, director of the CBS Evening News and CBS Special Events. "He spends
most of his time worrying about the content of the show." Which, P&J hope,
is more real than the videotapes being used.
Sleep tight, Cokie "Reporting from the Capitol" Roberts.
You were wrong
High dudgeon from state Senator Lou Raptakis last week, reported the Urinal's
"Political Scene" column. It seems the legislative press bureau refused to fax
out on General Assembly letterhead a Raptakis press release. The missive
denounced House Majority Leader Gerry "Marionette" Martineau's proposal for a
surtax on health insurance premiums to ensure that doctors and other providers
get paid in the event of another Harvard Pilgrim Health Care-style belly-up.
Although we are the least likely people to side with Marionette on anything,
we do respect the judgment of press bureau director John O'Toole, who made the
call against sending out the news release. The press bureau's policy is not to
distribute materials which criticize another legislator, even implicitly -- as
did Raptakis' -- even if it didn't mention Marionette by name. Bad for the "all
for one, one for all spirit" that the State House just reeks of, for lack of a
Fortunately, Marionette reverted to form when Raptakis fired a note back to
the House majority leader, accusing the legislative press bureau of censorship.
Martineau reportedly called Raptakis and chewed him out, saying he should have
come to see him before issuing a critical release. Gosh, we didn't realize the
powers of the House majority leader extend to scolding members of the Senate.
As Raptakis bleated at the time, "I thought this was a democracy." Hey,
senator, where have you been all these years at Halitosis Hall?
No word yet on whether or not Tommy and Pamela Anderson Lee will accept the
million dollars offered to them to star in a series of Internet and magazine
ads for one of those new herbal pills that claim to replicate the effects of
Viagra (aka Bob Dole Boner Pills). We suspect that the shameless quasi-porno
couple will go for the gold, seeing as there doesn't appear to be a major
Motley Crüe comeback in the offing.
Speaking of burnt out, busted-up circus dogs, Jan-Michael Vincent, the former
television and film star who's been on a downward spiral for over a decade now,
recently survived another tragedy. Apparently, Jan-Michael had a bad reaction
to Trazodone, a drug prescribed to control anxiety-related seizures. Dr. Mark
Kelly, chief of urology at St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica,
California, reports that Jan-Michael had to be rushed to the hospital with an
erection that lasted four days. The Enquirer, current paper-of-record
for all things Jan-Michael, quotes the actor as saying, "It was very painful,
and doctors tried everything but it wouldn't go down." No word on whether he
conferred with Tommy Lee about what to do about his condition. We say, what a
Mike Montecalvo and Roger Letendre , B101-FM morning guys, got a great scoop
this week -- an opportunity to do a one-on-one interview with current GOP
frontrunner George W. "Shrub" Bush. It came about at a sporting event up in New
Hampshire where a roast of a WMUR radio personality was taking place.
Unfortunately, there was a little condition attached. Along with Bush, Mike and
Roger were to interview baseball immortal Ted Williams.
While ordinarily this would only enhance the whole experience, it seems that
any interview with Teddy Ballgame comes with a stipulation that "his people"
have to give final okay before any audio or videotape can leave the premises.
It seems that Ted has become somewhat of a loose cannon in recent years (you
may recall the P&J item about how Ted blurted out something about being
hammered prior to the All-Star game at Fenway last summer), and there is great
fear that the Splendid Splinter might just step on his own Louisville Slugger
at any moment. Needless to say, you can depend on P&J to report in next
week's column the unexpurgated details of all embarrassments or humiliations,
should any occur during the momentous interview.