Off the Wall

Saving Facebook: My Confessions: 

On Learning My Burlesque Dancer Name Is Chantal Champagne: 

Well, I had been hoping for "Biggish Binky Peterson and His Palpitating Patter."

I would doubt whether these Facebook [quizzes] are calibrated properly, but I need the fivers in my unmentionables.

On Learning My Captain Underpants Name Is Boxer Boy:

I was gonna make a crack, but that somehow seems redundant.

On Learning My Gangster Name Is Sammy 'The Stud' Lonardo:

I was thinking that.

On Learning My Looney Tunes Name Is Elmer Fudd:


I mean, Gwwwwwwwwww!

In Response to "Cheetos? You've Given Up Cheetos?? I Had No Idea You Were That Strong!!":

If you don't count the INTENSE WEEPING, yes, I am that strong.

In Response to "Little Magical Clowns? You Are Interested in Little Magical Clowns?":

I can't put my finger on what you are referencing. My finger has a LMC on it at the moment....

Our anniversary pounces Feb. 14. Mike, put your arms across your eyes and scream!

Mike Durrett thinks his Mom may be speaking from the beyond - and compelled the lad to buy & eat a box of Ginger Snaps. So unlike him but definitely her.

The cookies are snappier without dunking. They are not called Ginger Sogs.


'How To Find A Masculine Halloween Costume For Your Effeminate Son'

News Video: Effeminate Boy Costume Tips: "Keep your son's hands occupied so he can't clap and squeal."


Lawn of the Dead

I attended a gathering at my friend Randy Stewart's house and while it was a borderline lovely event, some of the attendees were quite discombobulated and, yes, I'll say it, spooky.

I was rather concerned most of the night with their ghoulish stares, heavy-footed prances, and forlorn moans. I am considering suspecting it was the chili, but who can be sure?

I don't know how many of these stiffs I rescued from walking in place incessantly into the corners. I'd spin them around with a weenie tong and they'd shuffle aimlessly back to the party without a word of thanks.

Oh, I did get a couple of love bites. Must be cat people.

Also, having seen "Poltergeist," it is troubling to visit a new subdivision and discover your pal has a burial ground in his front yard. This can lead to chills and sequels.

I shan't nitpick. There was candy.

Ironically, several guests were nit enthusiasts and dibsed mine anyway.


Top 20 Least-Satisfying Trick-or-Treat Candies

Kids, I love you. Please take it from the old guy. I've got more than half a century of knocking on doors Halloween night, begging for goodies. I've taste tested snacks far and wide -- and with experience and wisdom added, this is the definitive list:

Top 20 Least-Satisfying Trick-or-Treat Candies

20. Almond Joyless
19. Milky Way Way Curdled
18. Whizzlers
17. Mike and Ike and Some Guy Named Fester
16. ZagBengayNut
15. Gummi Gristle
14. Drool & Plenty
13. Tootsie Boil Paps
12. Gobstaplers
11. Mr.'s Goo Bar
10. Bit-O-Hannity
9. Sweet Tarts With a Wart and Torn Hose
8. Popcorn Ovaries
7. Hershey's Kisses & Tongue
6. S'mucks
5. Butterfoot
4. Gassy Passy
3. KitKlap
2. Peanut B&M's
1. Sugar-Coated Jawfixers Corrective Surgical Tools

More Taste Tests: Kellogg's Disney-Pixar "Finding Nemo" Cereal | Kellogg's Disney-Pixar "The Incredibles" Multi-Grain Cereal | Kellogg's Disney Chocolate Mud & Bugs Cereal | Rice Krispies - The Cat in the Hat Recipe | Scooby-Doo! Baked Cheddar Crackers | Dexter's Mini Sandwich Cookies | Little Debbie Nutty Bars


Video Webisode: 'Stuff I'm Too Lazy to Go Type Up #3: In Color'

Mike Durrett, celebrated filmmaker ("We're not like him! We're not like him!..."), goes for an impromptu walk in the fall rain. When nature calls, one must video cam.

"Stuff I'm Too Lazy to Go Type Up #3: In Color" via YouTube

More: Mike's CONFIDENTIAL Video Webisodes


Big Weekend

Big weekend ... My clones, Lester and Connie, Black Dynamited their bad selves.


Meet the Neighbors

We're tolerant people. Our gate, which we're too slack to get out of the car to close, is always open to the community, but that doesn't mean we want hotties undulating in and doing it on our kitchen porch.

We're gonna be humiliated on Google Earth, I just know. Where are my dark glasses? ... When I hold my head down, I show chins. ... Please become me, parasols....

With this ring, I hope they thine wed.

Hey, giddy-ups! See that wall? Just beyond is where I keep my pleasing array of spreads and in-progress bottled relishes, endorsed by a cartoon stork toking a pickle. Don't do it near the eats, okay?

Sheesh, they didn't even comment in our guest book.


Remembering Soupy Sales

Comedian Soupy Sales has died at the age of 83. During the height of his career in the 1950s and '60s, he hosted a children's television program, largely adlibbed and, possibly, more entertaining to grown-ups and bakers.

Pie pie, Soupy.

"Factor Flashback: Bill O'Reilly Interviews Soupy Sales" via YouTube

"Soupy Sales: Come Pie With Me" by Barry Mitchell via YouTube

"Soupy Sales: Later With Bob Costas, Part 1" via YouTube

"Soupy Sales: Later With Bob Costas, Part 2" via YouTube

"Soupy & Pookie" via YouTube

"Soupy & Fess Parker & White Fang" via YouTube


What the Heck Was I Thinking?

Actual Messages I Wrote, Forgot, Then Found While Cleaning Out My Email Folders


We do not judge. Sorry for your loss / slow leak.


Your Dinner Cruise email is the third one I've received from you today. I also got your comments on the bunnies.

Have fun on the cruise. FedEx me the doggy bag.


I stand corrected. What about a Fry Daddy?


Ha. Nope, I hadn't seen this one. You can never have seen too many Twisting cats!


Oh, I was a teenager. I can still see the li'l bumps on it.


'Squat,' 'Squat 2,' 'Squat 3'

Morty at the MoviesMorty is appalled -- and I would have to agree with him, this time -- at all of the "Saw" movies. What are we up to now, "Saw 46" or something?


The cat much prefers the "Squats."

Me, too. We laughed so hard, our haunches ache.

"Squat" via YouTube

"Squat 2" via YouTube

"Squat 3" via YouTube



Follow Mike on Twitter

My Recent Confessions and Observations on Twitter, Where Everything Must Be Said in 140 Characters or Less

It may be over with my secret love, The Talking Pothole. She says, "Don't tread on me." ... Okay. Bye.
@WH2H_Radio props me over my lost luv, The Talking Pothole: "The talking pepperoni seem much friendlier." I'm vegan, so The Talking Tofurky.
"LOL" is so zoot suit or "hepcat." Squaresville, Daddy-O, Squaresville.
Watching TV's COMMUNITY. Loved this: "This is no school paper. This is a real damn paper. There's a 'Marmaduke' in here."
Finished showing the "World's Tallest Cat" [photo] to my kitty. Morty's walking around on his tippypads.
News Report: "IVF mother adds twins to two sets of quads." ... Yeah, everybody is downsizing.
Two personally amazing facts: THE TWILIGHT ZONE is 50. My marriage is 28. However, no Rod Serling in our bedroom. Yet.
My cat Morty and I are reading, pointing, and giggling at WHY DOGS DON'T LIKE HALLOWEEN: http://bit.ly/3ZYpXt
News Flash: "Women 'can enlarge breasts through mind power,' claims hypnotist." ...Ho hum. Men've been doing that forever, ladies.
Like Giovanni, I don't play the piano. I feel the piano. Although in my case, it's dark and I can't find my gum....

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Meet the Neighbors

We were headed up our country lane, the other morning, when I stopped the car to help a new resident. He was in the middle of the road, moving his house.

I did some heavy lifting and got him over to the vacant lot.

He didn't invite me in.

It looked furnished.


Fall Festivals O' Horror

Well, don't you just hate to see this?... 

Sad. So sad. I observed the parents strolling their *baby* around the festival for a long time in an eerie silence. It was haunting, heartbreaking. 

If only I could have been of service to them. I was very, very hungry.

Previously: Fall Festivals O' Fun



Cat photos: Where's Morty?

Morty's where he always is, the first thing in our mornings. 

I open my eyes and he fades in on the bedside table, waiting for me to stir. 

He goes into action like his hero, Leo, the MGM lion. He roars twice. 

And we're off into a new day's adventures.



Follow Mike on Twitter

My Recent Confessions and Observations on Twitter, Where Everything Must Be Said in 140 Characters or Less
I'm reminded I once said of my broadcasting career: "I am to radio what caulk is to proctology." ... *sigh* ... I was bragging.
In the news: "Mel Gibson's drunk driving convictions erased." Next, MAVERICK.
I'm not sleeping well. To make matters worse, my nightmares are interrupted by ads for THE BEST OF GIOVANNI - 3 Volume Set - Available Now!!
I regret I never mastered roller skates and the piano. I'd be crooning XANADU in some cocktail lounge now and doing wheelies on the barkeep.
The produce at Walmart was horrible. It looked like an Edward Gorey painting.
In the news: "Elizabeth Taylor Announces Heart Surgery" and movie sequel, LASSIE COME CARDIOPULMONARY BYPASS.
Sad to see Saturn cars going out of business. Maybe we can get another 17 years out of each of our Saturns.
Saw: LILI (1953) & its marionettish puppets! Ugh. Now I'll be compelled to walk around like that for days, getting tangled in the curtains..
Still waiting for the return of the swami hat. I've purchased a bicycle pump to fluff mine up and everything.
...Flared pants came back. Why not forehead jewels?
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I Got Nuthin'

Consolation video: "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (1951) Trailer, starring Charlton Heston, Gregory Peck, and Peter Lorre, via YouTube.



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My Recent Confessions and Observations on Twitter, Where Everything Must Be Said in 140 Characters or Less


Even More More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin''

It's time to wrap our cavalcade of daily "Hellzapoppin'" by sharing the comedy's most memorable footage, a specialty dance from The Harlem Congeroos.

These folks need to dial down the caffeine.

"Hellzapoppin'" Dance Sequence via YouTube

Continued From: "Movies in the Movies: 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "Even More More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin'"
Related: "Movies in the Movies: 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'" | "Movies in the Movies: 'Girls! Girls! Girls!'"


Movies in the Movies: More More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin''

By some accounts, the motion picture version of "Hellzapoppin'" differed from the splashy Broadway production. The previously mentioned projectionist gags, for example, would not have been relevant in the live version. Furthermore, the film instructs the characters to deliver a long form storyline from a freshly-minted script discussed on camera, replacing the comedy blackouts of the stage.

"Hellzapoppin'" was Universal's 1941 Christmas attraction. Curiously, two months earlier, the studio released another zany farce, "Never Give a Sucker an Even Break," written in part by and starring W.C. Fields. In it, Fields attempts to sell an insane movie script, teeming with outrageous characters and unrelated sequences, to a befuddled producer. As in "Hellzapoppin'," we see the imagined footage materialize.

The two pictures are patchworks, structurally and intentionally amok, and loosely similar. In execution and anarchy, however, W.C.'s vehicle out performs the Olsen and Johnson effort on all comic cylinders. Fieldsapoppin'.

Also, both movies feature character actress Jody Gilbert. She's "Toots" in "Hellzapoppin'," surfacing in the closing moments of this clip:

"Hellzapoppin'" Opening Number and Projection Room Lovebirds via YouTube

Ms. Gilbert has long held a special place in my protoplasm for her appearance as "Sucker's" snarly waitress. She's a fine foil for Fields and their diner scene together has been a welcomed, frequently recurring vision of mine for four decades. Let's order:

"Never Give a Sucker an Even Break" Diner Sequence via YouTube

Continued From: "Movies in the Movies: 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "Even More More 'Hellzapoppin'" | "More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin'"
Related: "Movies in the Movies: 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'" | "Movies in the Movies: 'Girls! Girls! Girls!'"


Movies in the Movies: More Even More More 'Hellzapoppin''

The Decatur Theatre, north of Atlanta, is pictured in a photo probably taken in early 1942. I include it here because, of course, the movie being exhibited was "Hellzapoppin'" and, decades later during high school, I worked my second job as a projectionist in this very building. Sweet.

The Decatur had a pair of 35mm projectors much like the ones on display in "Hellzapoppin'," although the booth in the motion picture is a studio set. It is not operational.

I can tell because there are no chimney-like exhaust ducts carrying off the considerable heat and toxic carbon arc fumes from the machines.

I see other telltale signs, although the most glaring is there is no toilet in this room. Projectionists of the period were not permitted to leave the machines ever, so a dedicated commode and sink to call our own were nearby, standard issue.


Hollywood productions, the legend goes, did not present toilets on the screen until "No Time for Sergeants" (1958) and "Psycho" (1960). Bathrooms did appear earlier in movies. They were furnished with all of the porcelain fixtures except potties. For the longest time, I thought excretion and secretion were invented during the Eisenhower administration.

Continued From: "Movies in the Movies: 'Hellzapoppin''" | "More 'Hellzapoppin''" | "More More 'Hellzapoppin''" | Even More More 'Hellzapoppin''
Related: "Movies in the Movies: 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'" | "Movies in the Movies: 'Girls! Girls! Girls!'"

Decatur Theatre photo courtesy Dennis Whitefield's The Decatur Theatre blog
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