There's a type of person who likes veiny blue cheese. Hunks of it, with raucous funky ribbons that smell like abandoned gym socks and taste like postage stamps, dish soap, and couch. That type of person'll sniff at it until his eyes water; he'll eat a cracker smeared with it -- zang! -- like a sock in the lips. On the converse, there are people who enjoy nothing more than warm watery tea. With maybe a touch of normal milk, but no sugar -- goodness, no, wouldn't want to upset the system. She'll sip at it and think maybe she'll go crazy and try a vanilla-flavored tea someday instead of Earl Grey. Or not.
There are people who love the gleaming, sugar-frosting pictures and naughty secrets of celebrity-gossip rags. With nothing to do on a gloomy argyle Saturday, they froth over a cracked magazine brimming with giant white sunglasses, gold purses, and pink flip-flops. It's life.
All of it is life. The part of the cortex that makes a person feel good is the same for everybody but might be lit off by different input. We need it like food.
Hot beds and action flicks. A community of bicyclists in a nighttime park in Budapest, all in matching hot-pink socks. Beer-bar girls in Pattaya Beach, Thailand; denim miniskirts and open-toe high heels, playing Connect Four in those bright yellow grids. Men who wear the ceremonial garb of Klingons and attend a circuit of conventions across the deserts and cities of the United States.
Why? Because it makes them happy. It lights off their brain chemicals. You can't judge someone who gets lit off from something different than what lights you off. If you like ice-skating on TV, you can't berate someone who likes boxing because it's the same thing, except you swap red gloves for white tights and bulk ferocity for grace.
The only thing you can hope for is that you find someone who likes what you like so you can sit and talk about it, reliving the enjoyment of the original hit, be it heroin or raising guinea pigs.
Maybe you have a 108-inch projection theater you watch chimpanzee shows on, or a 13-inch Zenith that takes three minutes to warm up. There is no difference because in the next 80 years you can only light off your chemicals so many times before you run out of fuel.
So light 'em off while you can.
Thursday, October 18
The Early Show
CBS 8:00 a.m.
Gas-remedy commercials confuse me. I have gas constantly. If I don't have gas, I've just woken up and it's right around the corner. How or why or for what end would I discontinue this process for a brief moment? If I were to eliminate gas from my system entirely, forever, it would take a dump truck of granular minerals, tinctures, and tablets. It would also eliminate a good 50 percent of the things that crack me up during a day. Nothing good can come from those chalky little pills.
PBS 10:00 p.m.
Once again, I've been ignored when it comes time to debate for the office of GOP candidate, even though I approve of -- nay, encourage -- everything the Republican Party embodies. My platform of graft, crystal meth, and deviant sexuality aligns itself perfectly with the actions of "Abe Lincoln's party" of these past few years, yet, my bid is refused. Old, white, wrinkly nose-pickers. I don't need you anyway.
Saturday, October 20
Inside the Actors Studio
AMC 10:00 a.m.
Inside the Writers Bathroom is the better program, but it really only needs to be done once, since every writer's bathroom is the same. Miscellaneously colored hairs from women who've wronged us enwreathe the sink. The shattered mirror doesn't need replacing because it reminds us of that night that things went so wrong. There's a bottle of vodka on the toilet tank. The whole scene is, in one word, grim.
E.T. the ExtraTerrestrial
Family 7:00 p.m.
If you clap your hands real loud, E.T. comes back and does shots of scotch with eight-year-old what's-her-name, the redhead from Charlie's Angels. Clap your hands, kids. Clap for E.T. and smooth whiskey adolescence. Look! His heart is glowing red! He's getting better with every tequila popper. Now he's wearing a beer helmet and peeing behind the jukebox. It's a miracle, kids! It's a miracle! You did it, you clapped so loud.
Sunday, October 21
HSN 8:00 a.m.
Magic shoes get all the press. Oh, sure, they can spirit you to any place in the world if you stamp your feet six times. Or magic hats transform snowmen into Christmas heroes. But give me a sparkly pair of magic earmuffs and I can make your day. You see, magic earmuffs, while not as flashy, can tell when your ears are hot or cold and compensate for it. You scoff, but on the beach or ski slopes, your ears cry for those mystical muffs of fur.
Monday, October 22
School and Sports Stars
ITVS 7:00 p.m.
Ah, the bright-teethed winners of the world. The square-cut and idiosyncratic teens that everybody loves. Except the chubby bespectacled kid in the greasy gray-hooded sweatshirt. He doesn't care about photography club or water polo. He wants to watch the Three Stooges and eat Count Chocula. Where is that hero's show?!
Tuesday, October 23
Beauty and the Geek
CW 8:00 p.m.
There's a huge Rubik's cube revival, and let me tell you how the old kids figured them out: combat boots. A heel stomp placed at the corner will get you a handful of loose pieces that you can reconfigure into the winning combination. Snap them into place and use the free time firecrackering your G.I. Joes, which is cooler, you stupid nerds.
Wednesday, October 24
Five Notorious Serial Killers
MSNBC 7:00 p.m.
I'm working on an updated version of the "Twelve Days of Christmas," and, well, isn't it my lucky day? Four chicken buckets and three Russian hookers took me ages, and then -- bam -- this one, right in the lap.