Check Out Ghetto Boy & Beers on the Open Road Radio Network (ORRN)
I'm going to be the first guest on a new radio program Monday November 1. My good friend Kelly Williams is co-host of a program on the Chicago-based internet radio network, the Open Road Radio Network. He & Bill Beers are on weekdays from 11AM to 12PM. Being an internet radio station you can hear them just about whenever you want by downloading the program.
Kelly is a talented guy and a good friend. I hope you'll check it out and recommend the show to your friends.
Fearless Radio MSN Group
Kelly's ORRN Yahoo Group
Well Now...This is COOL! 7 out of 10!
(As of 7:52 PM 10/30/2004)
Do you Like To Watch? (9259)
Jesus & Hip Hop (1494)
Buy My Vote! (497)
A Prom Nightmare (468)
These Help Writers? (423)
Ten Ways to Get My Vote (362)
Pass the Soap, Wilbur (264)
New album pays tribute to trag (203)
The True Test of Fame (202)
Breasts for all Mankind (197)
That's WAY COOL! I saw my "Who Will Get MY Vote?" article listed at Dave's Daily so that certainly helped. Awhile back I tried to enter "Socially Responsible BOOBIES" at fark, but I'm never sure where the readers come from. I'm just happy to have them reading my work. You are all too cool!
Just got back from a LONG gig. A rare appearance from me wearing Renaissance attire! I ABSO-FUCKING-LUTELY HATE Renaissance clothes, fairs, the whole damn thing! I won't go into it now. But let's just say that among the things I am extremely proud of in my career:
- I've been a professional entertainer for nearly 20 years and never worked as a waiter
- I've been heard on the Dr. Demento Show
- I've NEVER worked a Renaissance fair!
Of course, there was a photographer from the Daily Herald and he took many a photo of me in my fancy dress. Normally I never get my hopes up of finding my picture in the newspaper. Most of the time they go for some other picture. I have no doubt that I'll be on the front fucking page of the paper seeing as how I loathe Renaissance costumes so much!
So you may ask, why did I take the gig? MONEY, baby. MONEY!
The Swan is BACK!
Guilty pleasure television at its finest! After watching the two-hour special the other night promoting the new season I remembered I wrote a piece about the first season for The Cheers. Since it all still applies I thought I'd reprint it here. Pardon the typos and Enjoy!
Wanna Go to Hell? Watch FOX TV's "The Swan"!
By Andy Martello
When it comes to our favorite books, movies, television shows or pop songs, we all have our guilty pleasures. There will always be that one thing that you’re afraid to discuss publicly. There is a place on this Earth that specializes in creating guilty pleasure without any shame. Shame is reserved solely for the viewers. This place is the FOX Television Network.
I don’t know how they manage to do it time and time again. From "Melrose Place" to "Joe Millionaire", FOX has cornered the market on guilty pleasure programming. Their latest offering to the mix is "The Swan."
Here’s a quick summary : every week, we meet two women who are extremely unhappy with their appearance. These ladies undergo 3 months of extensive plastic surgery, physical training, mental therapy and dieting. Once transformed, they compete against each other in a beauty pageant at the season’s end.
Putting aside fake sentiments about everyone being beautiful, beauty being skin deep, and any other cliché we reserve for people who are less than perfect visually, this show is BRILLIANT!
Some of these gals fall well into the “great personality” category With regard to their looks, some are victims of their surroundings and are stuck with unsupportive husbands or fathers who just don’t know how to be nice to anyone. No matter what the story, all of these women are desperate to make drastic changes in their lives. These women are willing to endure anything to achieve their goals.
Surprisingly, FOX manages to make us care about these women. Their stories are so heartbreaking, one can’t help but want them to get their wish. You want them to get the work done and be transformed into new people. Once you’re emotionally involved in these desperate lives, FOX drops the other shoe. They make you feel dirty by reminding you that the ultimate goal of the program is to create a beauty queen. Throughout the show they bring it back to the pageant and stress that this is not just about one’s self acceptance, but the ability to make men masturbate to the results. I’ll say it again : BRILLIANT!
I don’t remember being so happy about feeling so awful in my entire life. On one hand, I am happy to see these people start liking themselves and “blossom." On the other hand, I can’t believe I am watching people go through all the pain and discomfort for a stinking beauty pageant. It is almost like watching a children’s pageant with disgust and then being elated when your own daughter wins. To quote the cult show, "Firefly", - “I’m going to the special hell” for this.
After all has been said and done, I am truly amazed with the “before & after” shots of these ladies. I am most pleased to see them accept themselves and hope more than anything that FOX will do an update show long after the series has ended. I want to see how these women’s lives have changed, if they kept up with the maintenance of their new selves and if any of them have sent their ungrateful bastard husbands packing. I force myself to forget about the final pageant, but I admit that I’m looking forward to seeing all the new hotties parading around in evening wear.
When contemplating the writing of this review and commentary about the show, I looked for justifications for "The Swan" being on the air. We seem to view folks who get plastic surgery as vanity whores taking “the easy way out." That being said, we SAY that physical beauty isn’t that important, but very few of us actually live by this theory. Most people don’t choose to date and marry unattractive people and we all have our own preferences when looking for a mate. If we ourselves were not the ugly kids being picked on by the pretty kids in school, we are guilty of being harsh to SOMEONE during our formative years. I assumed that I wouldn’t be able to look past the pettiness of "The Swan" and find any value at all. When faced with my own admission that I am an imperfect human being affected by beauty just like anyone else, I was sure I’d find no good in the show. Then it happened. I watched "American Idol."
I saw the ever-shrinking Randy Jackson, looking good and oozing with confidence. He was a much larger man in the two previous seasons and is now downright svelte by way of comparison, much to the delight of the audience. Did he hit the Stairmaster and ease off of the Ben & Jerry’s to get to this point? No. He underwent gastric bypass surgery to trim down. Thinking about it, NBC weatherman, Al Roker has been touted for his courageous move to have the same surgery in order to achieve the slender stature he enjoys today. More and more people are allowing themselves to be put under the knife to do what Mother Nature and their own self control could not do -lose weight and look good. Some of these people are doing it for vanity, others are doing it to save their own lives. Regardless, all of these folks are regarded as brave and heroic for taking this drastic step. How are these folks any different from the contestants on "The Swan?"
I’ve decided I cannot live in a world where Carnie Wilson is a hero and an unhappy housewife in dire need of a tummy-tuck is considered a head case. Even if this decision is made JUST to keep me from taking a shower after every viewing, I am confident this is the right way to go.
On their own, these women could never afford all the surgery and training to achieve their goals. The contestants on "The Swan" have many needs to be fulfilled. Not all needs will be fixed by surgery, cosmetic dentistry, exercise and therapy. However, one viewing shows that these dramatic transformations are suitable beginnings for some to find a better life. The team of surgeons and trainers make no judgements upon the people looking for the procedures and they never pretend that they are waving magic wands in order to fix imperfections. It is made clear to all contestants that there are no guarantees about the surgical outcomes and the results depend upon the patient’s ability to work hard, maintain a positive attitude, and stick with the program. They strive to instill confidence and self esteem into the contestants and start them off on paths that will result in positively-altered lifestyles and not just new appearances. In my opinion, that is a worthwhile endeavor. A trite dissertation about beauty in society would diminish the impact this show has on the lives of the contestants.
But there’s still that damned pageant. I know FOX will not create a show with the sole purpose of making the world a better place. Ruppert Murdoch is not Jim Henson and FOX is not going to air a "Fraggle Rock’" type show unless it involves an island, a mansion, busty Muppets in a hot tub, and some method of voting characters off the show. No sir, when it comes to programming, there must be something in it for FOX. The final pageant is the smarmy, profiteering side of FOX rearing its ugly head, but I can’t expect anything less from the network. This is, after all, what they do best. Plus, the redhead from the first week is WAY HOT! So lay off the FOX team and curl up in front of the set for a good time. Get some popcorn. You can heat it up with fire you’ll get from the “special hell."
© 2004, Andy Martello All Rights Reserved
In Second Place...BLOGWISE!
Well sir, I am happy to give the Second Place trophy to Blogwise. You may remember my posting about Globe of Blogs being the first blog search engine to show up in the searches. These days, their listing is even harder to find when doing a simple search of my name. They may have been the first to pop up, but they are no longer the only search engine to bring my blog to the masses.
Blogwise actually brings a listing of my blog in the TOP 10 on Google! Not bad! Eatonweb Portal is our third place winner. They come in the Top 20. They get no picture here for third place. Better luck next time!
I Wonder if I Should Send More Stuff to Gapers Block?
When I check my stats, every now and again I find out that the folks at Gapers Block stop by my site. They go ahead and check their stats and look at the top referring sites, just like I do every day. I assume they see the links in the top 25 and check to see who the heck sent them there in the first place. That's what I do.
I'm sure they get surprised to find out that 530 (540 if you look at ALL referrers) people headed on over to their site after viewing this blog. Sure it is not much when you consider just how many people find them via search engines and a few other sites. But if you look carefully, you'll see that the URLs for this blog are among the only individual web referrers in the top 25.
That means there are some true fans coming from my site, reading my one story printed there, and presumably reading other articles within their fine magazine.
So if I am interpreting this info correctly, I should send them some more stuff. If I've brought them some good traffic then it should follow I could continue to bring them traffic if more of my articles were published there. Hmmm...
(SHH, don't tell anyone. I know I should submit more articles to them. I'm just creating another post to generate traffic their way and pave the way for their acceptance of future articles. Greasing the wheels don't ya know. I suppose I could just post a message, "Gapers Block is the BEST MAGAZINE EVER!" That could do the trick too.)
All Kinds of Suspicious! ATTN: DuPage County (Milton Twp, Precinct 70) Voters!
I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but something smells very fishy here in DuPage County.
At the end of last week I received a card stating that my polling place for the general election has changed. I did find it odd that they would make such a change with barely a week to go before the election, but I otherwise didn't care much about it.
The beginning of this week I received a letter from the election commission stating my polling place has changed. It had all the same information as the previous card. The card looked much more official, having a similar appearance to the voter's registration card. The letter looked rather plain and had the appearance of the many different political announcements we receive prior to an election.
Today, I received yet ANOTHER letter from the election commission stating that I have a new polling place, but the previous letters had misprinted the street address!
Let's give the benefit of the doubt here and assume MOST people who received the card kept it and made a note of the change.
I would assume that MANY people simply did not read the second notice. Some probably thought it was junk mail, while others figured they already KNEW about the change so why bother opening.
This third letter probably had even MORE people ignore it, casting it aside as wither overkill or just more junk. Of course THIS is the letter which has the CORRECT address on it and people unknowingly disregarded valuable information.
I can see many folks showing up at our old polling place and being turned away. They will be sent to the correct place, but a good percentage of these folks will take this as an inconvenience and might not make the trip to the neighboring town.
I am sure that even more people will go to the WRONG address and wonder what the hell is going on.
In short, I'm thinking that many votes will not be cast as a result of this sudden curious change.
With all the discussions about new voting machines & procedures, disenfranchised voters, improper ballots, and the like, I think that this little development can have quite a bearing on the election.
All the pollsters, electoral prediction services, and "experts" seem to agree that Illinois will vote for Kerry. Could this make a difference?
Anyway, I'm not an investigative reporter and I KNOW about the change. So for now I'll just post this info here.
ATTENTION Registered Voters!
DuPage County, Illinois, Milton Township, Precinct 70
Your Polling Place has Changed!
Fordham Glen Apartments
1245 Fordham Drive
Glendale Heights, IL
(Enter Fordham Glen Apts. from President Street)
A real conspiracy theorist would even take note of the irony of the polling place being on President Street. But not me!
e-pauly is Rockin' the Vote!
And HE'S CANADIAN! Paul at e-pauly.com has reprinted BOTH of my articles from this week's issue of The Cheers. Near as I figure, this is as close as I have ever come to being a syndicated columnist. It has all of the same feeling to it. I'm in multiple magazines at the same time. I smoke cigars. I drink. Hell, I am a stone's throw away from being another Mike Royko! OK, maybe not.
Do check out my contributions at either location and be sure to send your friends to read my work. I am very happy to see my writings appearing in so many places. Soon, you'll be able to see it in even MORE venues.
MMMmmm, BIG BEER!
I haven't spent much time talking about my recent trip to Las Vegas. Believe me, I LOVE Vegas and I'm always happy to talk about it. There are so many things that enter into my mind during a week and I also don't want to constantly bore you with blog notes about my daily nonsense.
However when you have a chance to post a few pics of a REALLY BIG BEER being enjoyed in the land of excess, you simply have no choice!
I haven't the foggiest notion just how much liquid that glass holds. But I do know that you can get it at the Monte Carlo Brew Pub and have it filled with beer, margaritas, or hurricanes for a good price! We went for the Oktoberfest beer from the pub.
One great thing about Las Vegas is that you can drink alcohol ANYWHERE. You can have a big-ass beer like that one anywhere in the greater Vegas area. So naturally when you take one of these babies outside for a walk, you become quite the popular person. April & I were stopped by several people wondering where you can get such a massive drink. We got quite the looks from others. I swear that the Monte Carlo should consider hiring people to walk around the Vegas Strip with full glasses. I am confident we ended up sending many folks to the pub for a big-ass beer of their own. Maybe they can just hire ME to do this!
Forgot to mention...
Be sure to check out the new look of The Cheers. Very slick and many more good features. MAYBE this will also attract more readers and get us popping up in the search engines. Here's hoping!
I have two political pieces in this week. They've already been very well-read and they're gathering some interest. I hope you'll check them out.
First story: Politics, Schmolitics!
Second story: Who Will Get MY Vote?
Well, my leg is feeling much better. It looks more and more like I had a severely sprained muscle and no torn tendons or ligaments. VERY GOOD NEWS. The muscle relaxers and ointments are doing the trick nicely and I've been able to go to my gigs with minor pain. Should be much better by this time next week.
I got my first rejection letter from a magazine publisher. I sent the O.J. Simpson piece to Slate Magazine and while I felt it most appropriate for their readers, they disagreed. I suppose I should keep the e-mail as a badge of honor. After all, you never forget your first rejection letter from a paying source.
I now only have 5 of the top ten most read articles at The Cheers. It was bound to happen. [sigh]
I got to watch the Capone show and was very pleased to see that I did indeed get a lot of face time! It was strange to see how much or how little of the footage was used for various scenes. But it was all worth it seeing that I did in fact make the cut. Generally if I tell friends about my minor appearances in movies or TV shows, everyone watches and I get edited out. This time, I was there! I'll be taking my tape and posting some screen shots soon!
In my wildest dreams I never thought I'd actually see the day when the Boston Red Sox would be World Series Champions. The former Cubs fan in me could look at their victory as hope for the Cubs. However the completely-sane, doesn't-believe-in-pipe-dreams realist in me knows that the Cubs will end up watching the White Sox (NOW #2 on the all-time W.S. drought list) win long before the Cubs even come close.
Congrats, Boston! Stop fucking with Bill Buckner and his family now so he can get into the Hall of Fame!
Watching "The Swan", Waiting for Bill Kurtis & Al Capone
All is right with the world when The Swan is back on TV! Fantastic guilty pleasure viewing, indeed. All this makes for good time-wasting while waiting for the Bill Kurtis thing to come on. I'm nervous that I'm not in it at all since I told so many people to watch.
FUCKED up my leg today at a gig! Worst timing ever! Had this been last week or right after Vegas I'd be fine and able to heal properly. Instead I'm in the midst of one of my busiest weeks ever and I have little choice but run the risk of fucking my leg up even more. Of course I have no insurance so any procedure or test is practically an impossibility for me. All things considered, I'm a little depressed & angry, but mostly in PAIN!
Anybody out there do discount MRI's?
I'm Friends with the Uber Bitch!
Actually I have many friends that are uber bitches. Its just that in this case I am friends with THE Uber Bitch, Naomi. I found her blog via e-pauly and she's a hoot! I'm proud to have her Royal Bitchiness as my friend! Check it out and enjoy.
Andy Land Readers, CHECK IN!
I check my stats. I know there are a few regulars out there. I see where you come from. I know you're out there. Let's meet!
I'd like to know who's reading this nonsense and learn more about you. So here's what I'm hoping to find in the coming week.
Post a Comment to this thread. I don't want any vitals. You can certainly keep your e-mail to yourself and all that. Use a stupid screen name if you want. What I want to know is...
- Who You Are, Where are You From, etc.
- How Did You Find the Site (Next Blog, Search Engine, The Cheers, etc.)?
- What Do You Like or Dislike About this Blog, My Writing, etc.?
- Do You Blog and Would You Like to Do a Link Exchange?
- What Blogs or Magazines Do You Read?
That's it. Nothing too intrusive. I'm just curious. I saw that someone using the screen name, Jemima, went to The Cheers and posted a need for 1,000+ more clicks to make Sex Blogs hit the 10,000 mark so I know somebody cares. LOL!
Look for two funny & thought-provoking political pieces from me at The Cheers starting tomorrow. The new look of the magazine launches tomorrow with a pre-election special. I'm sure you'll enjoy the magazine and all the new features, including a "Sort by Author" feature and a section for their regular columnists (ME). These should make finding and sharing my work much easier for all!
Whatcha Reading: The Top Ten List
Here's a little something special from The Cheers. To quote Alex P. Keaton, "I hate to toot my own horn, but BEEP BEEP!"
Do you Like To Watch? (8978)
Jesus & Hip Hop (1460)
A Prom Nightmare (431)
These Help Writers? (401)
Pass the Soap, Wilbur (249)
New album pays tribute to trag (184)
The True Test of Fame (181)
Sex with monkey (146)
Advice for Anorexics (135)
O.J. - Where Were You? (123)
Let's see if we can get Sex Blogs over 10,000 before the election. OK?
Thanks to all for making my writing a modest success at this anonymous internet magazine. One day, you'll help make my writing a success elsewhere!
In other news, the Boston Red Sox need only to win two more games before they are required by law to CHOKE! Believe me, I want them to win, but I can't get excited until after they win the whole shebang! Must be the Cubs fan in me. Good luck, Boston!
Best Week Ever, I Love the Decades, That Show on VH1 with All the Comedians
I wanna be one of the comics commenting so eloquently about pop culture on Best Week Ever, I Love the 70's, 80's, 90's, the 80's Strikes Back, the 80's - This Time its PERSONAL. Hell I want to be on ALL the shows on VH1!
Why not me? I'm funny as all hell and I have smart-assed opinions and reams of ready-made jokes about all things current, trendy, and popular. Nobody has ever heard of me either! I want to be one of those unknown comics that becomes KNOWN because of his unknown status so beautifully featured on VH1. Why not me, dammit!
OK, I could use an agent. Surely those slots aren't given out simply because some VH1 guy saw a funny comic at Caroline's. It must be an agent that tells VH1, "Hey! This guy's funny and he'll work for cheap!" Soon thereafter, you don't have to work cheap anymore, right? So...must get an agent.
I suppose I could start buddying up to the guy who runs My Blog is POOP. He seems connected. It APPEARS that he's voting for Bush and that just might leave me out of the running, but I like to drink and look at strippers. That must count for something.
Of course, I might have to move to New York to secure this gig. Then I wouldn't make enough money commenting on Best Week Ever to actually LIVE in New York. Hmmm. I need to do more homework about this.
Well, anyway, Bob. Give me a call. We'll talk about the Thundercats all day long if that's what it takes.
Fowl Play, by Christopher De Santis
One of the reasons I have so many penguins in my promotional materials is that I like penguins (DUH!).
There is an actual "professional" reason, however. I may be wrong as this memory is very old in the old noggin, but a long time back I remember reading an interview with Groucho Marx where Groucho was asked why ducks were so prevalent in his body of work. If you recall, a duck brought out the secret word in You Bet Your Life, and there's a duck SOMEWHERE in just about all of the Marx Bros. films. Groucho said that the duck was a naturally funny bird and there were only three birds in the animal kingdom that lent themselves to comedy so perfectly. Those birds were ducks, ostriches, and penguins!
When I was revamping my press kit I decided to put this principle to work and have my favorite little animal represented somewhere.
What does all this have to do with artist and filmmaker, Christopher De Sanits?
Christopher has one animated film, Fowl Play, which is being shown frequently in between episodes of Animaniacs on Nick Toons. Go to his website and check out a sample of the flick and you'll see just how PERFECTLY De Santis illustrates this piece of comedic theory. It is a great film and I WISH I'd have made it myself! Great work!
Go Get Some BOOBIES While They Last!
The week is winding down & that means that my latest piece, Socially Responsible BOOBIES! will be heading into the archives soon. You'd think places like Dave's Daily or Fark would be going nuts for a story that so blatently has BOOBIES in the title. That seems to be what entices the readers most at those sites. Ah well.
Buy & Sell Andy Martello at BLOGSHARES.COM!
Well the internet continues to amaze me. Recently I found out that my blog is eligible for trading at Blogshares.com. Blogshares is like fantasy football for stock freaks. The stocks? Blogs from around the net.
Now I have absolutely NO knowledge in the stock market and even less interest in any form of fantasy gaming so I cannot begin to tell you if my "stock" is any good or not. I can figure out that my value goes up based upon the number of incoming and outgoing links to and from other valuable blogs. After that, I've no idea how it all works nor do I want to know.
I DO however want to be a very highly sought after and traded stock. SO START LINKING TO ME and more importantly, get in on the hot action and begin buying stock in Andy Land! If you are a player at Blogshares and would like to comment on how my stock is doing or how I am valued in your portfolio I will happily post your findings here.
As an added bonus, anyone willing to keep my blog in their personal portfolios will receive a FREE souvenir Andy Martello trading card (while supplies last). Simply e-mail me your snailer and proof you've got me in your stock portfolio and I'll send you the goods. You can even sell my card on eBay for REAL money! I've been told that you can get in excess of ONE DOLLAR for the card! Impressed? Well then you should know that you can sell an autographed card for up to FIFTY CENTS! I dare any other hot stocks out there to make such a claim!
If I Ever had My Own Blues Band...
I think the only logical choice in names would have to be "Whiskey" Dick & The Beer Goggles. That would make for a good "show band" name as well.
Jackie Joyner-Kersee & O.J. Simpson - Together at LAST!
Today I was fortunate enough to meet Olympic hero and all around nice gal, Jackie Joyner Kersee. She was the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the DuPage Convention & Tourism Bureau, of which I am a proud member.
Jackie was there because DuPage County, where I live, is the proud host of the 2005 Prairie State Games. We're all quite proud of this great athletic competition making the necessary step to bring the competitions to a larger audience, enhance the spirit of athleticism throughout our state and bring some much needed tourism dollars to our little chunk of the world. Please click on the link to the games or the DuPage link above to find out more about this great event. This is the first time the games have ventured out of Mrs. Joyner-Kersee's hometown area of Southern Illinois (originally from East St. Louis, IL) and we hope we can provide a fine home for the games.
Jackie was a very nice lady and not at all full of herself as so many famous athletes are these days. She's also very tall and quite striking in person. Overall, she's a helluva lady! It is for those reasons I felt it necessary to mention here here. You should also check out the link to the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Boys & Girls Club of East St. Louis while you're at it.
In other news, My good friend at e-pauly.com has reprinted my O.J. Simpson article at his site. I was very proud of this piece which is probably why I reprinted it here and I am even happier to see it take on a whole new life in front of Paul's large audience. Thanks again, Paul!
Indulge in the Inevitable. Read the Ron Jeremy Blog!
Have you ever wanted to be in on the ground floor of something? Perhaps a financial investment or an Earth-changing product? Maybe you wanted to be discover an entertainer just before he broke through and hit the big time.
Online, many people wish they could be around for the beginning of a good blog. There are quite a few celebrities that have their own blogs. Why my web designer's favorite blogger of all time can be found at wilwheaton.net.
Well my virtual friends, thanks to a heads-up from the good folks at attu sees all I can be THERE a few moments after the genesis of a fine celebrity blog. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Ron Jeremy's blog.
I cannot promise it will be any good. I cannot guarantee that it will be the best celebrity blog I find. Hell I can't be sure if Ron is the best celebrity to be blogging. But for now, Ron is the best I can do for you and I can say without hesitation that his blog will be MUCH BETTER than Lawrence Connor's blog!
Maybe, just MAYBE, Ron will find my blog and be entertained by my nonsense and he'll feel compelled to blog about me. Stranger things have happened, frequently to me!
Some Photos to Cheer Me Up
I've been a bit down today for various reasons so I thought I'd post a few photos that make me smile when I see them.
These are two photos I have stored up on some disc somewhere. Both are from the St. Louis Zoo. They have the best penguin habitat on the planet and they've only recently added a Hippoquarium thingy that is also way cool. I LOVE penguins and I have many great photos from this most excellent exhibit.
The first Hippoquarium, and probably the only one to claim use of the term, is at the Toledo Zoo. I've been amazed by hippos after visiting Toledo and think all zoos should have a Hippoquarium of their own. Most people think that hippos are very boring. But if you see them frolicking in these giant tanks you'll never look at them the same way!
Photos: © 2004 Andy Martello, All Rights Reserved
The Acquittal of O.J. Simpson: Ten Years After
I thought I'd reprint the OJ article from The Cheers right here. It has been awhile since I reprinted any of my work and let's face it, if I become too much of a "I had eggs & toast for breakfast" kind of blogger then I should just shoot my damn self now! Enjoy.
The Acquittal of O.J. Simpson: Ten Years After
By Andy Martello
Originally Published in The Cheers
Much is being made about the tenth anniversary of the "not guilty" verdict in the O.J. Simpson murder trial. There are television and news stories, interviews, and talk show discussions virtually everywhere.
Clearly, the families of the victims will be adversely affected eternally by the crimes and the verdict. The racial landscape of the States hasn’t made much improvement since October 3, 1995 either. But with so many people claiming to have a personal connection to the trial I wonder why I am not really affected.
Looking back I recall watching the famous white Bronco chase and subsequent trial. I laughed at the Dancing Lance Itos on Jay Leno…ONCE! I did spend an unnecessary amount of time following the case. It was my guilty pleasure and I made no apologies.
On the day of the shocking conclusion to the “Trial of the Century,” I had absolutely no interest. There was no outrage inside me, no amazement, & no loss of faith in the legal system at all. However, I had a much different perspective about the lunacy of the event, thanks to what happened to me the previous afternoon.
On October 2nd I was heading back from southern Ohio. The 5-hour trip back home had me heading up I-65 at a brisk pace. Just before Rensselaer, Indiana, I was forced suddenly to hit the brakes. As I came to a stop an awful accident in the road ahead of me was rolling to its conclusion.
This was a dreadful crash involving a flatbed trailer carrying a load of steel pipes, the semi towing it, and a blue Ford Mustang. The driver of the Mustang, originally heading south on I-65 had decided to change direction and head north, using the “authority vehicles only” lane in the median to make her illegal U-turn. She pulled out directly in front of the semi trailer.
I only saw the aftermath of the impact as it came to a halt. The driver of the semi apparently swerved at a high rate of speed out of the way, barely glancing against a second semi trailer. The maneuver, while skillful, did not prevent a collision with the Mustang, and the little car was obliterated.
The semi flipped over onto its topside and the trailer, now twisted one half-turn, unleashed its payload and blocked all traffic lanes.
I was only the second or third car on the scene. I, along with at few other drivers, got out of my vehicle to help the victims.
The Mustang and its contents were scattered everywhere. Initially, I ran towards the semi, as I could see the driver stumbling out of his upturned cabin. As I walked through the glazing of diesel fuel on the pavement, I couldn’t help but take my eyes away from the truck and trailer in the distance. My attention became focused on the ever-growing pools of blood leading to the still, lifeless body of the Mustang’s driver. I was a little frightened at the prospect of bearing witness to the final moments of this woman’s life.
She was face down in the street. Her clothes were torn and her body viciously contorted. Large gashes were strewn about her arms, legs, and back. A mammoth and unnatural looking humplike protrusion pushed out from the base of her head. I was certain she had a broken neck and that I was staring at a dead woman.
I stood there trying to calm myself and determine how I could best help the situation. Another driver arrived at her body about the same time I did. We stared for a moment and then spoke.
“You think she’s dead,” he asked?
“Probably. Hard to tell. She could have a broken neck,” I said.
“Well we should probably check her pulse,” he said hesitantly.
“Yeah. I guess we should," I said, agreeing.
There was a pause that grew and grew until the other driver broke the silence.
“Well? Go ahead then.”
Now why on Earth did this guy figure that I was the man to determine life or death in this instance? What part of the above conversation suggested that I was the qualified physician here? I responded in kind.
“Go ahead…and do what?”
Without hesitation he replied, “Check her pulse. You said we should check her pulse.”
I said? Now I didn’t want to get into an argument over a dead woman’s body here, but this guy was clearly delusional.
“I AGREED we should check her pulse, but I didn’t volunteer for the job,” I told him.
“Well certainly YOU should check her pulse,” he said, “You WERE the first man here. You should do it.”
In a Seinfeldian moment I quickly chimed back, “Do I look like a doctor?”
“You said she’s got a broken neck,” he snapped.
“I said she COULD have a broken neck. I didn’t say that she indeed HAD a broken neck! COULD! Kind of how you said we SHOULD check her pulse. COULD and SHOULD are not ‘She HAS’ and ‘I WOULD’!”
He was afraid of touching a dead woman. I was afraid of making the situation worse. I’ve always known some basic first aid and I knew that you really shouldn’t move an injured person, especially if you were a JUGGLER and not a DOCTOR. Before the argument became even more surreal I went ahead and agreed that I WOULD check her pulse.
I surveyed the woman’s body and took a deep breath. I kneeled down, inching my hand closer and closer to her neck. My hand trembled a little before I composed myself and found the strength to give this dead woman the dignity of human contact and concern. I knew what to do, how to do it, and I was poised and ready to feel her still warm skin for confirmation of her demise. I would have done it, too, were it not for one small problem. She was still very much alive.
An inch before touching her neck she started moving, trying to push her body up from the ground.
"SHIT", I thought to myself, "What the HELL am I going to do now?"
In an instant everything had changed.
I knew what to do if she were dead. I wouldn’t have to carry the responsibility that comes with giving aid to someone who COULD die if I did the wrong thing. But this gal, WAS alive and she was severely injured. Her very attempts to get up could have killed her, and I would be the guy who did or didn’t contribute to her death. THIS, while surely better for her, was NOT “better” by a long shot!
I went through what little first aid I had stored in my brain from my Cub Scout days. I kept her quiet and settled, applied direct pressure to the head to stop bleeding - I knew enough to keep the situation calm. I told the other guy, now completely freaking out, to go find the driver of the truck and call for help on his CB radio. I remained and did everything I could to keep this woman from moving and bleeding.
Thankfully, a short few minutes later, an off-duty paramedic who saw the accident came to give aid. I told him everything I knew about what happened. We both tried to get the woman’s name and determine the extent of her injuries. Later, I went to check in on the driver of the truck, who was mercifully, unharmed.
I did what I could help the paramedic. A large crowd of people had gathered on the highway. I was about to go back to my car and wait things out. He thanked me for my help and for taking good care of the woman. I took one step away before I heard the woman speak.
“Is my baby alive?”
I was aware of the wreckage, but until then I had not really LOOKED at the debris on the road. I started seeing things I didn’t want to see. A car seat, torn baby clothes, a diaper bag, bottles, tiny little shoes. The paramedic got her to repeat herself.
“My baby. Where’s my son?”
He asked her if her son was indeed in the car with her. She couldn’t remember. She only asked repeatedly, “Where is my baby?”
One last inquiry from the paramedic produced the answer none of us wanted to hear: “He was with me. Where’s he now?”
What once was triage was now search-and-rescue. The paramedic ordered the bystanders to search the wreckage & the roadside. He leaned towards me and whispered, “Somebody SHOULD check the ditches.” There would be no comical conflict here. I headed toward the roadside.
Things were quiet, which made things more eerie for me. I knew that unless the baby was unconscious or dead we’d be hearing crying. There was no crying.
“PLEASE, God don’t let me find the dead baby,” I thought. I searched and collected bloody clothes and other items along the way, certain I was inches away from yet another horrible sight. As I made my way into the ditch the paramedic called, “Wait! She says he’s with his father.” A huge sigh of relief could be heard throughout the crowd.
I did what little more that I could to help. Eventually the paramedic sent most of us away from the scene. He waited with the woman for an ambulance. I went back to my car.
I had to get out of there. In a little twist of irony, I used the illegal U-turn portion of the highway to make my exit. I headed south and found a place to stop, eat, and quietly panic.
Any problems I had were minor by comparison. When I arrived home I collapsed, made a few phone calls, and cried. I was exhausted and scared. I was pleased with myself for being calm when it mattered, but angry I couldn’t do any more for her. I called in sick from the next day’s work and fell asleep almost immediately.
When I woke up the next morning, I turned on the TV just in time to hear the OJ verdict read on every station my set received clearly. Everyone in the world was watching. The trial was over and OJ was found not guilty. I smirked and said, “Big fucking deal. Good for you.” I turned off the TV and took a long walk.
I was embarrassed I’d ever given any of my valuable time to this travesty of justice. I was angry that anyone OTHER than the families and friends of the people directly involved with the case even gave a damn about OJ and Nicole.
Was it a tragedy? Yes. Do I wish that justice had been properly served? Sure. Was it any of my damn business in the first place? Hell no! These were people that had no impact on my life, people I didn’t know, people that had no business being in my thoughts at all and I treated the trial like “destination television”.
The day before I actually played a part in a tragedy involving people I didn’t know and realized that what we do within our own lives matters more than anything else. As far as I was concerned it was high time I paid more attention to the people in my life.
The folks who were glued to their sets were sad people with nothing of any substance to fulfill their existence. I was one of them for a while, but I learned from my mistakes. I owe a lot to that wounded woman, the semi, and the mangled Mustang.
© 2004 Andy Martello, All Rights Reserved
Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 & Bad Santa
What a double feature! I watched both of these back to back tonight. I certainly enjoyed them both very much, but what a strange pair of pictures to watch in succession.
Of course I once had to suffer through a night where a girl I was dating wanted to watch "Seven" and then immediately follow it up with "Babe". Once again I really enjoyed both of these movies but they were very VERY hard to watch in that particular order. I spent the first 45 minutes of Babe wondering when the damn pig's head was going to end up hacked off and mailed to Brad Pitt.
That girl was a bit odd. Long distance relationship. Like most women who claim to really love sex, but rarely have any when given the opportunity, she knew that she could have it whenever SHE wanted it. She never felt the need to get a good romp out of the way before engaging in meaningful conversations or anything else...like watching movies. She never could figure out that the first thing I wanted to do after months without seeing her had NOTHING TO DO WITH watching movies about serial killers and cute pigs. So add my pent up horniness into the above scenario and you can imagine what a strange evening that must have been for me!
Investigating History: Taking Out Al Capone
Take a look at this screen shot!
Tune in at 9:00 PM Central Time (10:00 PM EST) on The History Channel. Check your local listings to be sure.
Be sure to tell your friends, both of them, to watch the show!
Screen Shot: www.historychannel.com
FUN GIRLS! FUN GIRLS! Fun Girls Are Fun!
The taping at Psychobabble was even stranger than usual and THAT'S saying something. But I did enjoy looking at the Fun Girls. I even had a couple of Fun Girls sit on my lap during my segment - for purely entertainment purposes of course.
Fun Girls is a new venture where young ladies wanting to be calendar models go to events at local bars and clubs and sign up, compete, whatever it takes to be a Fun Girl model. I can't say I know much more about it all.
All I know for sure is that it is a GENIUS plan. I wish I'd thought of it. I need my own little army of loyal Fun Girls!
I wonder if they franchise?
No pics on their website yet. But do check back!
Attu Sees All!
And I like what Attu sees!
I get photographed all the time and I've NEVER found a photographer like this one!
I need to know where Attu finds all the good stuff!
Boobies EXPOSED at The Cheers!
Well, not entirely. There are no pictures of breasts at the magazine this week but there are MANY good links to such fine pictures for your enjoyment. I've already heard from a friend that she's NOT at all interested in my current work at The Cheers, Socially Responsible BOOBIES, which means this is a GREAT ARTICLE!
In a couple of weeks The Cheers is changing its look and format, AGAIN. I won't get into it all here but presumably THIS will be the last time there will be a major overhaul for awhile. In any event you'll notice that the "Whatcha Reading" section will be expanded to list the Top 10 most read articles. You may also notice that I wrote six of them! KICK ASS! I can't thank you enough for reading. Please, tell your friends to check out my work.
In a few minutes I'll be off to do another taping of Mike Preston's Psychobabble TV show. Should be more low-profile access cable fun for yours truly!
Shatner: One listen later
Everything I said in my last post...DOUBLE IT!
A DAMN FINE ALBUM! Some of the songs will make you cry they are so touching. Kudos to Mr. Shatner & Mr. Ben Folds for a genuine treat for the ears!
Everyone asks me, "Why the penguins, Andy?"
In do believe my good friend at e-pauly.com has found the answer!
Pauly is also a Canadian. Coincidence??? I think NOT!
William Shatner: Has Been
It is still too soon to tell as I've only just popped this into the old CD player, but I am confident when I say there is a very good chance that William Shatner's new CD, Has Been, is the single greatest compilation of original music the world will ever hear! I'm only three songs into it and the song "You'll Have Time" is absolute GENIUS!
Few things in the world ever truly shock me. After all I have worked for circuses AND carnivals. But in the last few weeks two things actually made me stop in my tracks and Shatner is responsible for both of them. Not only did he win an Emmy Award...for ACTING, but he has created an almost perfect audio creation.
Thinking about it, Shatner is also a Canadian. Hmmm, Shatner and Alanis posts in the same week. What is happening to this world?
Anyway, please buy this CD and help make the impossible happen. I'd like to see Shatner on the top of the charts and win the Grammy for best new album. Why not?
Things I NEVER Thought I'd Hear Myself Say, Volume One
1) Alanis Morissette is kinda hot.
I was just watching the most recent episode of Real Time with Bill Maher and I was shocked and amazed to find myself actually digging Alanis. I mean, I've always thought she was a talented songwriter who specializes in songs I'll never enjoy, but I never thought she was even the slightest bit attractive. Well sir, today I found myself actually getting a little hot for this lady! Very pretty and delightful demeanor. Nice to listen to. Intelligent and interesting. Seemingly taller than I'd once thought ( I do really dig tall girls!) And...she's got quite the rack!
Maybe it was her new short haircut. Maybe it was that she was happy and not angry. Maybe it was because she wasn't singing. I don't know. All I know is that if she and I were to meet, knowing now that she has the ability to get my attention in that way, I just might be able to get past the Dave Coulier thing and bust a move on this little slice of Canadian bacon.
I'm sure I'm going to hell for all this. I apologize to all my manly men friends. Take solace in the fact that I'll never stoop to buying one of her CDs.
Why e-pauly ROCKS! John Gacy is Still Alive!
I'll be sure to post some pics and tell fascinating stories about my trip to Las Vegas later this week. For now I should point out a few really KICK ASS things that happened in my absence.
If you head out to The Cheers you'll see that over 8,700 people have clicked on the Sex Blogs article and many have gone on to check out the other four pieces of mine listed in the Top 5 most read articles. As always, THANK YOU for reading! Look for a great article about BOOBIES next week!
Next, I was most surprised and pleased to see that the excellent e-pauly.com has reprinted "My Dinner With Gacy" at his fine blog. If that tweren't enough to tickle my bottom, he's added an entire section to his site called, "Andy's Stuff". Look for a column a week from yours truly. Some weeks will feature new "exclusive content". Some will feature reprinted works. All will make me grateful for the exposure and the feedback. Thanks to Paul!
5 minutes left on my net card!
Hey all! I'm at an internet cafe and I have just enough time to say that Las Vegas, as always, ROCKS!
April kissed Wayne Newton and the Liberace Museum is one of the great treasures of the world! Great fun in the best town in the world!
No Posts for About a Week. I'm Goin' to Vegas, Baby!
Heading out on a fact-finding mission. If I can get to a computer I'll add a few things.
Listen for Me & Mr. X's Briefcase on Dr. Demento this Weekend!
Yes indeed, I am proud to announce that my now defunct comedy group, Mr X's Briefcase, will be heard again on the nationally syndicated comedy radio program, The Dr. Demento Show!
We're in the very first segment. Listen for the dark comedy sketch, "Suicide Hotline" and you'll hear what kind of genuis has been lying within your humble host. I really miss the boys from the group. Maybe one day...
Info on where to hear Dr. Demento:
In retrospect, I think it is great that G-Dub called our invasion of Iraq, "Operation Iraqi Freedom." It was much better than his original idea, "Operation Iraqi Liberation." I'd hate to have the initials for his war spell out O I L.
The state of Florida has been besieged with an astounding FOUR hurricanes this year, causing billions of dollars in damage. Four hurricanes! I figure that is one hurricane for every year we've had George W. in office. Karma is a bitch! Try to figure out those pesky ballots this year. I hear a plague of frogs is next!
I didn't watch the Summer Olympics this year. I can't really get into the Games any more. They've lost their soul. I miss the heroes like little Kerri Strug. Who can forget the night she broke her ankle landing her Gold Medal-winning vault? For me, she put the "limp" back into the Olympics.
Gacy is Gone, but O.J. is Still Around
My week at the fine e-zine Gapers Block has come to an end. I'd like to thank the Academy, my agent...
Seriously, I was honored to have my first submission to the magazine, My Dinner with Gacy, be a featured column. While I am not privy to the stats I am certain that many folks read the piece. Gapers has pretty good traffic and I have actually received e-mails from total strangers who read the work, found my website, & felt compelled to contact me. That is quite special.
I also know that quite a few people went to Gapers Block from this blog and I am hopeful that they'll see the slight increase in traffic and publish more of my work in the future. I just hope to get some actual feedback from the editors there. I like to know how things are going with this new gig.
As I promised my friends, I did not send lots of Andy-SPAM to promote the O.J. Simpson article at The Cheers this week. Consequently, it is not in the top 5. No big deal. While I appreciate the fact that so many friends of mine head out to read my work, I know that it is a pain in the ass to get too many mass e-mails in your inbox.
What's funny is that I am actually much more proud of this article than the Sex Blogs piece, and we all know how well that is being received. The same rule applies: SEX SELLS! LOL!
Well now, this is just too much!
The most recent stats from "Whatcha Reading?"
Sex Blogs - The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly (7600)
A Jesus and a Queen and a Hip-Hop Scene (1421)
Hair of the Dog (365)
September Writing Prompts (281)
Pass the Soap, Wilbur (192)
I must say I am both humbled and pleased. I sincerely hope that if I ever manage to get a book published or land a cushy job as a columnists for a major publication...you'll all come with me!
What is most pleasing about this is the fact that folks are now reading the past articles I linked within in the Sex Blogs piece. I'll miss not seeing the Ego-Surfing article in the top 5, but I'll get over it.Traffic is up here and at The Cheers. I just want to hug you all!
My recent rant about The Cubs will run next week and I'm thinking of adding something special for the following issue. Stay tuned!
"Running your car against a wall is fun, but its really not good for your car!"
That was one of the funniest things I've heard in a long time. That little piece of brilliance came from our tow truck driver last night as he was describing some of his experiences racing cars, participating in demolition derbies, and the like.
He even went on to explain that some things are just too much to take, like "rollover contests". Rollover contests are where you run your car very rapidly up a ramp and try to roll it over as much as physically possible.
I also found out that racing helmets are unusually heavy and hard.
I learned a lot of very useful things last night between Janesville, WI and Carol Stream, IL.
I will save other exciting bits of humor from our conversation for another time. For mow, let me say that I've been on the road a lot over the years. I've had to suffer through auto breakdowns many times. On this occasion, I was very happy with the service provided by Brad from Ace Towing!
I had to shell out $380.00 for a new left braking system, rotor, caliper, etc. I know I should have gotten both sides done, but I'm trading in the car in a few months and don't want to spend that much more on maintenance. I'm just pissed because that little expense cuts into the money I'd saved up for my Vegas trip next week. Ah well, my car is a big part of my career so it is all good.
I'd have just continued driving around with a locked up caliper and worn out brake pad, but that might cause my tire to explode and crash my car. And I've heard that exploding tires may be fun but they're not good for your car!
Ask and Ye Shall Receive!
Look! I'm famous! Thanks to the fine, friendly, and perverted folks at attu sees all for the link! I am already seeing an increase in traffic from these folks, and based upon the many great links and pics at their site, I believe I'm seeing an increase of a different kind in my pants!
Car Trouble! But Why Bore You With My Problems?
I'll tell you about my car woes a little later. This post must be dedicated to even more "thank yous" and the like from me.
The count at The Cheers in the "Whatcha Reading?" section is OVER 7,100! About 3,600 came from Dave's Daily. I found out that a few other sites have been big on the old "Read Andy" bandwagon.
According to Siim, editor-in-chief at The Cheers...
"About 2000 hits have come from http://attu.blogspot.com/, couple of hundred from http://www.nsfwnews.com and http://www.linkfilter.net"
That's pretty damn cool! I don't know anyone from any of these places, and yet someone felt it necessary to link to The Cheers and tell the world about my little article.
As it turns out, the attu sees all site is a very cool blog with very good traffic and even better content! nsfwnews, stands for "not safe for work news" and is mostly adult content. Very cool! Linkfilter seems to be a referring site filled with links from their readers and subscribers, so that is even cooler in its own special way. I'm going to e-mail them all tomorrow and beg for link exchanges!
Perhaps my favorite little added bonus to all this extra traffic at The Cheers is that many have taken the time to check out my blog and my "Hair of the Dog" article from days gone by. This is one of my favorite and funniest pieces and it makes me very happy to see it in the top five most-read articles. Stats online can be tricky. But I am fairly sure that about 300+ people read the Sex Blogs piece and enjoyed it enough to read on. MANY THANKS!
I should also give another shout out to Pauly of e-pauly.com . Oh crap! Did I just say "give a shout out?" Anyway, he blogged about how flattered I was that he reprinted my work. Well, of course I'm even more flattered to see how flattered he is by my state of, uh, flatteredness(?). In any event I hope he and I can do a lot of good work to fill the minds of folks online every day. Thanks again, Pauly.
I Got to Thinking About Rock Legends
We have only one original Ramone left (and one latter-day Ramone).
We have two original Beatles left (I'll let you argue if you should count Ringo Starr or Pete Best as the original. Billy Preston fans need not apply.).
ALL FOUR ORIGINAL MONKEES LEFT!
We even have would-be Monkees like Stephen Stills and Charles Manson.
Take THAT, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!
Thanks to April for reminding me of this fact.
DOUBLE WOO-HOO!!! e-pauly Busts My Proverbial Cherry!
Well this is a fine how-do-you-do, indeed! While checking my stats this morning I was surprised to see a new site had climbed the list of my top referring sites, e-pauly.com. Being the curious sort, I checked out the link to see what was up.
Lo and behold, e-pauly became the first person or site to reprint one of my articles in his blog! How cool is that? I can't stop looking at the link, I'm so pleased!
I was even happier to see that this is actually one very cool site with lots of exciting and fun info stored inside. Did YOU know that there are a bunch of bloggers willing to flash their boobs to raise money to fight breast cancer? I didn't think so!
See, achieving fame and fortune can be represented by a lot of things. For instance, being satirized in Mad Magazine would be a great feather in the cap. Getting on your first big-time talk show would be cool too.
Being a writer has its own set of cool trophies for the cabinet and being reprinted or syndicated in someone's blog is surely up there in this fancy new techno-savvy world! Maybe some day I should try to make a living at this stuff!
Thanks very much to Paul MacPherson of e-pauly.com!
Woo-Hoo! Whatcha Reading?
Sex Blogs - The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly (2778)
A Jesus and a Queen and a Hip-Hop Scene (1407)
September Writing Prompts (265)
Fun With Ego-Surfing (170)
'...Too Soon': Remembering Matthew (164)
Those are the most recent stats taken from The Cheers! The feature shows the five most read articles since the re-launch of the magazine and just LOOK at who's got 3 of the 5 slots? WOO-HOO!
Now before I get too excited, let's remember that the relatively high numbered articles are referrals from Dave's Daily and they may or may not reflect a "real" number. That is to say, sites like Dave's may have programs in place that automatically click on a link in order to show the recipient of the click an increase in traffic. Sneaky, sneaky! While I can't say that 2700+ people have actually read my Sex Blogs article, I CAN say that quite a few real people have read the piece and THEN come on over to this little blog for more fun. That's pretty cool!
I also know that I did not add my piece to the Dave's Daily list nor did a staff member at The Cheers. So that means some REAL PERSON liked it enough to share with the class and the good fortune of having the word "SEX" in the title has made more than its fair share of folks click away.
One other little thing I know is that before I got listed at Dave's at least 280 folks read Sex Blogs, and close to that many read my last few pieces. Many of those folks are a direct result of my e-mails to friends, posting on bulletin boards and news groups and...referrals from folks after all my shameless promotion. So I have to say THANK YOU to anyone who has been supporting my little writing ventures.
Sure, MILLIONS of people are online at any given moment and I shouldn't get too excited about a few hundred when compared to those numbers. But the fact that so many have gone simply because I've asked, and have continued to read, makes me feel as though I truly am on the right path. So, thanks!
Since I e-mailed so many folks twice last week, I'm not pushing the O.J. article via Andy-SPAM. So please just go and read the darned thing, bookmark The Cheers and look for my silly words!