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As a loose rule, whenever you hear "question authority," you can replace it with "be a lazy ass." When a hippie in an organic oats and horse apples store says, "The government doesn't want you to smoke weed because it makes you question authority," it's safe to infer, "The government doesn't want you to lay around in your apartment, on your back, rubbing garlic and brown sugar on your belly, reeking of failure and hubris, wondering if your hair will dreadlock naturally if you don't wash it for two months."Hey, stinky, squeeze a lemon into those armpits and run a mint branch around your falafel hole. Corporate America awaits.

If you see a 1984 Dodge Colt with a "Question Authority" sticker, go ahead and translate that to "I hate work."

And don't give me that line about "I know plenty of successful pot smokers. I know teachers, lawyers, bus drivers, pilots, blah blah, bleet bleet bleet, who all wake up and pinch a bong load." That line's so old and tired it's arthritic and has a nasty case of piles. That line stands on its front porch in boxer shorts, black socks, and huarache sandals and remembers taking Guadalcanal.

Sure, there's that one guy we all know who drives his Volkswagen Passat to a fluorescent box office, smokes joints in the parking garage, and writes MP3-swapping software, happily clicking his keyboard, loaded on Humboldt Jefferson Starship purple-haired sticky.

But, society runs on averages. Most people who proudly claim "daily smoker" or "wake-and-bake" status spend their day terrified from stress and overwhelmed if they have to do the dishes and get the mail in the same day. Their ambitions for the week include watching a television show about talking dogs and a low-self-esteem rutabaga.

If you're spending your hard-earned busboy tips on nontaxable, black market, sandwich bags of plant clippings instead of "God Bless This Country and to Hell with Iran," stickers from Warehouse O' Crap Mart, of course the government has something to say about it.

Not that I'm a raving fan of our government. I don't have a big foam number one finger printed with "Congress!" on it.

And I hate work. But I don't delude myself with some bohemian ideal.

The sticker on my truck reads, "I hate work." But I get up and I put a damn shirt on every day.

I'm just saying...

Thursday, August 16 Breezies Intimates Collection QVC 8:00 a.m. Oof. Here's what you want on a hot summer Thursday morn. The "intimates" collection on QVC. Elastic waistband, purple Lycra bloomers with a little extra room for Depends. Wear 'em under your girdle to bingo night for that special feeling in your old butt cheeks. Yeesh. I feel queasy.

The Office NBC 9:00 p.m. My job is exactly like The Office , only not as funny. And I don't work in an office. I write in an alley shack. So I dress rats up in little suits and pit them against each other as coworkers and nemeses. Jim the Rat is tired of the shenanigans and would quit the next time he's forced to limbo at a morale-building party, but he's a slacker and needs the money. Pam the Rat paws at her fur self-consciously and hides behind her desk. Damn, I hate Michael the Rat, but he's so funny.

Friday, August 17 That '70s Show Fox 7:00 p.m. I can't wait. In 20 years there'll be "That 2000s Show," and our lives will be kitschy and quaint. We'll laugh at the clothes we used to wear. Not because they're outdated and silly, but because we wore clothes at all. Nude is the revolution, and I'm starting today. Maybe with a Lone Ranger mask until everyone else has caught up. Wave if you see me at the grocery store.

Saturday, August 18 Cake CBS 9:00 a.m. Genius is a contribution that is sometimes obvious. A show named Cake . Even if it's not about cake, you had me at "Cake." I'll kiss your Italian leather loafers, Mr. Whoever Invented This Divine Program. Let me roll around under your desk and bask in the smell of your knees.

The Bourne Identity USA 8:00 p.m. Matt Damon and I are almost twins. If he were chubby and balding with a depressed chin and a smell of sour milk. If I had better teeth and I wasn't missing part of my right ear. Come to think of it...never mind. We're both just short.

Sunday, August 19 Ken Kramer's About San Diego NBC 8:00 p.m. Come to my neighborhood, Ken. You can pretend you don't see me spiking your strawberry soda with moonshine. We'll ride bicycles with fringe and pinwheels to the nudie bookstore. Then we'll shave our chest hair into hearts. On the couch, I'll scoot closer and closer to you until our thighs touch. Oh, my neighborhood's a doozy, Ken. A doozy.

Monday, August 20 Rules of Engagement CBS 9:30 p.m. What happened to straightforward titles? M*A*S*H. Cheers. Friends. Now everything has a double meaning. Like this show. This is probably about people who are engaged to be wed, but the title implies that their relationships are hostile, warlike. It's all very pleased with itself. It's all very cucumber sandwiches without any crusts. Puffy sleeves. And, believe me, nobody likes puffy damned sleeves.

Tuesday, August 21 America's Got Talent NBC 8:00 p.m. The true intention of this program is to show the rest of the world that we are not just slop-fed war hogs. That we spend our evenings dancing, singing, learning sleight of hand, and training parrots to book travel arrangements and crap like that. We're telling other countries to love us, despite our SUVs and Wal-Mart. But it came out all wrong and twisted and it involves David Hasselhoff. Like everything bad.

Wednesday, August 22 Anchorwoman Fox 8:00 p.m. Spare me. Murphy Brown, rescue me. I'm drowning in a puddle of mud and contempt for modern television, and I need your sensible shoulder pads for flotation devices. Murphy Brown, save me. MURPHY! SAVE ME!

Thursday, August 23 Alaska PBS 8:00 p.m. Alaska's state motto should be "Ice and Drunkards!" Of course, PBS saw fit to throw money into a documentary about bears and trees. They're doing it alphabetically, and Arizona ("Sand and Drunkards!") is next. The PBS cameras will train on cacti and ghost towns and miss the point. Again. +

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