SlowNewsDayFullBy Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter and Boston City Paper, 2/2011

In response to your literally thousands of cards and letters, here’s more slow news day, random thoughts.

First, we have the very best comment EVER about the 2011 Super Bowl. Many celebrities were posed the question, “Who do you think will win the Super Bowl?”

Actor Mark Wahlberg (great actor and Dorchester boy) said, “Not the Patriots, so I don’t care.”

Well said, sir!

We’ve been through a lot this winter with blizzards, brutal cold, massive amounts of snowfall, ice storms, and cancelations, but one thing about this time of year just can’t be beat: Cadbury Chocolate Easter Eggs are on sale! I had three today, diet be damned.

Friday, February 4: Did you the TV weatherman telling us we were only getting RAIN the next day? Did you see the disappointment in their eyes? It was so obvious. Hey, does this mean if it stops snowing, the local networks will have to go back to reporting REAL news that MATTERS?

Nah.

Sometimes I deliberately don’t read a newspaper or check online news for a few days. Try it: You will feel better. As the guy in “The Matrix” said, “Sometimes you just need to unplug.” Then again, he was a pretty heavy drug user, so bad example, but you get the idea.

In other news and non-news…

Why are two out of the three judges on “America’s Got Talent” British? Did we learn NOTHING from 1776 with the British telling Americans what to do? Sheesh.

Speaking of talent shows, God have mercy on us all we’re heading into another 18 month long presidential election cycle. Here’s a thought. What if the 2012 election was decided on American Idol? Think about it: Voter turnout would be spectacular. Popular vote would replace the Electoral College, which makes sense. Everyone on Earth has a cell phone so no worries about getting to polling places, hanging chads, improper campaign financing or election tampering. I mean, how many court battles have there been over American Idol results? None!
Seriously, this could work. After the candidate speaks and answers questions, the American Idol celebrities would critique them:

Randy: “Yo, Yo, Yo, I dunno, Dawg. You started strong, but your economic policy idea was weak. Man, capital growth is not simply a response to economic factors; many personal factors influence small business models.”

Jennifer Lopez would add, “Yeah, I really liked what you said about health care but you should stop trying to redirect questions you don’t want to answer. But you seem really nice and I like your shoes.”

Steven Tyler, who’s old enough to remember most presidents since 1808, would add, “Dude, when Aerosmith played the Inaugural for Millard Fillmore, he told me, “It is not strange to mistake change for progress.” So, don’t be so eager to change your ideas. Go with what works for you.”
Finally, Ryan Seacrest would say something really annoying as usual, and give us the voting numbers, and then the next night, someone would be voted off! Power to the people!
The new president would then go on a tour and make some albums, while the secret shadow government and the space aliens conducted business in Washington, as usual.

Speaking of young people, kids don’t send thank you notes anymore. They don’t even send thank you emails. Solution: Stop sending them money.

Hey, kids, here’s a message for you in your language: HY KDS STY IN SCHOOL AND DO YR HMWRK . DNT TXT AND DRV. IN FCT PT DWN TH STPD PHN STP TXTNG AND ACTLLY TLK 2 SMN I MEAN REALY TLK U KNW ACTL FC 2 FC CNVRSTN WTH ANTHR HMN BEING WOULDNT THT BE GR8

Speaking of technology, I saw a camera shop the other day that had a huge sign that said, “We develop FILM!” in much the same manner one would announce, “We fix Gramophones and Transistor Radios!” I go in there a lot so I went in and said, “Hey Doug, what’s FILM?”

At the “Check yourself out dammit” aisle at supermarkets, you know those credit card pads where you have to sign your name with the plastic pen-thingy on the screen? I always sign it, “Bugs Bunny” or “Daffy Duck.” I figure if no one is checking my ID anyway, and I have to do all the work myself; at least I can have some fun. If the computer can’t verify my signature, why should I bother?

Speaking of the train (I wasn’t, but go with it), I’m sitting next to a guy next last week on the train and his cell conversation went like this: “I can’t talk, I’m on the train. I said I’m on the train. People are listening. I can’t talk. We can talk about this later. Are they pressing charges? That’s her own damn fault and she knows better. What did the cop say?”
For real, the conversation he didn’t want to have lasted ten more minutes, with more personal details being revealed. I tried to be invisible (sitting next to him and all) and re-read my Herald and tried to find the real estate listings in Sudbury fascinating, but hey, newsflash: If you don’t want to have a conversation on a cell phone, press the off button.

On a related subject, I was at Target last week shopping and a woman on the phone walked by saying (loudly), “Yeah, he was doing it in the shower. Yeah, in the shower. I know, can you believe it?” File under, either “TMI,” or, “Please tell me he was cleaning tile grout.” Dear everyone: If you want to have a private (read: embarrassing / inappropriate) conversation, don’t do it on a cell phone in a crowded area / train / store / anger management class. We DO listen, we always listen, and we WILL make fun of you. Hell, some of us even take notes.

Speaking of rage, I’m a starting to worry that I am enjoying too many TV shows where people often kill each other. I mean: Vampire Diaries, True Blood, Supernatural, etc… I worry what does it say about me? Then I smile and realize the answer, of course, is that Vampires are cool.

Another slow news day. Hope I gave you a laugh or two.

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