That's 'vice president
slumlord' to you
Can you imagine how fast they had to hide the razor blades at Vice President Al
"Two-by-four" Gore's campaign headquarters when one of the tenants on his
Tennessee farm accused him of being a slumlord? Right on the heels of getting
the New York Times to buy into the fact that Lyin' Al actually did have
a country upbringing down in Carthage, rather than a fancy-pants free ride
galloping through the corridors of Washington's Fairfax Hotel, Gore is nailed
for letting one of his properties get run down. And this for a family that
probably isn't going to be invited to the big house for dinner.
Although one of Veep Whore's spokesmodels denied that his boss was evicting
the complaining tenant, saying that they were being relocated for "a lengthy
period" while their septic system is fixed, it still reeks. Hey guys, it ain't
that hard a job. This sounds like the kind of absentee landlord neglect that
has made Phillipe and Jorge go postal in the past, not to mention many of our
friends, and we know there are millions of other Americans who have been
victimized in the same way. Not exactly the way to grab the blue-collar vote.
P&J particularly liked the description of the horrendous conditions
endured by Ms. Mayberry and her children, as reported by Alice Montgomery in
Salon magazine: "Mayberry got Gore's attention by going to the public
with an eviction notice last week, given to her after she repeatedly complained
about the cracked tile, pealing paint, clogged pipes and an army of spiders in
her home." Well, forget the "army of spiders," darling. If our paint was
pealing night and day, we'd be outof our gourds, too. We mean, you can barely
hear the insults on the Jerry Springer Show.
However, we can only wonder how George Dubya might have responded: "What's a
septic system?" (Oh and Dubya, we hope you passed our congratulations to your
father in honor of the 11th anniversary this past week of the quelling, by the
aging, murdering dictators of Red China whom your father supported so heartily,
of the protests in Tianenman Square. In 1989, the students rolled out a replica
of the Statue of Liberty to show where their hearts were. Those kids -- they
just don't understand international trade!)
Younger, but wiser
Phillipe and Jorge simply adore actress JoBeth Williams, a fabled Brown
University grad, especially when we notice that she's getting smarter every
year. P&J have previously expressed our admiration in this space for the
intelligence of the one-time College Hill heartthrob, noting that, according to
the age listed in her Hollywood bio, the precocious Ms. Williams evidently was
admitted to Brown at the tender age of 15, and earned her degree by 19. Move
over, Madame Curie!
But it appears that the shy, demure and fragrant JoBeth was simply using that
as a ruse. A recent consultation with her curricula vitae shows that her age is
46. We realize that Williams has been disguising the fact that she was more of
a swinging genius that she even would admit to being. Just like our lassie to
not lord it over her less-intellectual Brown friends.
This fact was not lost on JoBeth's fellow Class of 1970 alums who recently
returned for their 30th reunion at Bruno Uno. In the dorm reserved exclusively
for '70 grads who returned for commencement, a large sign read, "If Jobeth can
be 46, so can we!" Quite a tribute to the highbrow Williams, and we presume she
would have been quite pleased.
Dissatisfaction, pt. 1
Now that there's another byline strike at the BeloJo (reporters withholding
their own names on stories to underscore dissatisfaction with the current
status of contract negotiations between the Urinal and the Providence Newspaper
Guild, the bargaining agent and union for most writers there), TV and radio
reporters have started to sit up and take notice of the ongoing nastiness.
Guild members have been picketing daily in small groups on Fountain Street
this week to remind people that there still isn't an agreement. While details
have been scarce in the Other Paper, Phoenix contributor Steve Stycos
has kept readers up to date in recent months.
Naturally, the O.P. is refusing to comment as negotiations drag on. Belo, the
O.P.'s owners, sat on the latest Guild proposal for weeks before rejecting it.
According to P&J's sources inside the paper, Belo has been holding out
until the outside circulation workers vote on whether to join the Guild, while
simultaneously increasing the pressure on them to stay out of the union.
This is a clear indication that the paper is not just engaging in "tough
negotiations," but trying to break the union. Meanwhile, one Urinal vice
president, Mark Ryan, has been sending a steady stream of unreadable missives
to Guild members, claiming that the things the Guild is asking for (some of
which are already enjoyed by non-Guild employees) are "unavailable." While this
may have enhanced Ryan's prestige inside the company, it has also provided
Guild members with many laughs at his sub-literate efforts.
Dissatisfaction, pt. 2
The current issue of the New Yorker points out that this has been a
banner year for the Rolling Stones' 1965 chart topper "(I Can't Get No)
Satisfaction." Besides being named the best rock song ever in a VH1 poll, two
new and very different versions of the tune have been recorded for summer
consumption, one by avant-garde guitarist and singer Cat Power, and the other
by fluff merchant Britney Spears.
While Cat Power's take on the tune contains eerie silence where the chorus
once was, Spears's version is almost all chorus over a predictable
machine-driven disco beat. The commercially fabricated teeny bop queen is
singing a song that takes as its subject all that she represents. This would be
considered ironic, except for the fact that irony generally indicates some
degree of knowing perception, an alien concept to Ms. Spears.
As Britney gears up for her world tour to begin in another week, a report has
reached the media that a "wealthy unnamed individual" has offered her $7.5
million to go to bed with him. Spears was quoted as saying, "It's a disgusting
offer . . . It's outrageous how a man like that can offer something which is
totally unacceptable." She added that she will remain a virgin until her
But we wouldn't know anything about this disgusting offer, of course, if it
weren't for the Britney Spears publicity machine that's working overtime to
jack up interest in her tour by accentuating her image as a sex symbol.
Johnny Rocker vs. the Undertaker?
P&J were heartbroken to see that our favorite bigot, Atlanta Braves pitcher
John Rocker, has been sent down to the minor leagues. Ostensibly it's because
the Kannonballing Klansman is having control problems on the mound. Truth to
tell, it's because he is having control problems in the clubhouse. As most
folks know, Rocker launched into a June 4 screaming tirade under the stands at
Braves Field at Sports Illustrated writer Jeff Pearlman, the scribe who
reported Johnny's skewed view of life last year. The report cost the young
Georgian yahoo the scorn of his teammates, the city of Atlanta and virtually
anyone able to walk on their hind legs.
The best part of this is that not only do his teammates now really revile him
as much as everyone else does -- the Braves are known for having perhaps the
most mature and professional bunch of players in baseball and have made their
feelings known -- but that if he's left with the Richmond Braves for more than
20 days, he loses a shot at a multi-million dollar contract. Rocker's ability
to throw, rather than blow, smoke would be worth at least $3 million a year on
the free agent market, but if he stays more than 20 days in the bush leagues,
the Braves can retain his contract for about $400,000 a year. That might
actually wake this clown up. P&J hope that upon that renewal, Atlanta
management will promptly ship him to a club where the words that Rocker seems
comfortable with, like "fags, spics, wogs and niggers," might be tolerated --
like the Japanese baseball league, where they don't understand redneck
However, Rocker no doubt has another career opportunity awaiting him: pro
wrestling. With his scowling, contorted facial expressions, his ability to rant
loudly and profanely at the fans and opponents, and his now-established bad boy
street creds and high visibility, he'd be a natural to sign for Vince McMahon's
WWF. Hell, he's young, he'd probably not even notice if you hit him in the head
with a chair, and he's more than willing to make an asshole out of himself for
free, no less. The only thing is, the other pro wrestlers might rebel, thinking
he's giving the sport a bad name. We can see it now: Johnny "Too Bad" Rocker.
Oh yes. Oh no.
Kudos and congrats . . .
. . . to P&J's close friends Russ and Linda Tyler, who held a smashing
party for their daughter's graduation this year from JoBeth William's own Brown
University. To commemorate the event, they had a large cake made for their
young honoree and guests by a very popular and talented local baker. (We won't
mention any names, but Lori will know who we are talking about.) When the cake
was unveiled by the proud parents for the delight of their daughter, they were
a bit surprised to see congratulations offered to her for getting her degree
from . . . Providence College! Jeez, Rusty, you never knew the Dominicans
charged that much for tuition, did you?