The Invisible Man.
"I didn't plan anything tonight 'cause I was getting ready for that. I assumed tonight's show was covered, that Pete had this one in the bag." -- Tom, expecting to ride Pete's three-hour wave
"Don't worry, there are plenty of people keeping track of Spike." -- Tom, reassuring a caller that the ankle bracelet is in place
"Ooooh, candy. I hope Tom doesn’t miss this one!" -- Mike, rooting through Tom’s plentiful candy sack
"He’s one of the good ones, huh?" -- Tom on Aaron's enjoyment of Jewish comedian Sacha Baron Cohen
"Pick one. You pick me or him! You pick me or him! Pick your side, Aaron! -- Tom, informing Aaron that he can't have it both ways
"You’ve got the bloodlust! You like hunting these people. The thrill of the kill!" -- Tom on the devotion of Clubber wrangler BeBe Williams
"You can’t stay nine forever!" -- Tom, issuing a grow-up call to the Hobbits
"A what?" -- Bob Dylan upon seeing a CD version of Modern Times
“He thought Motrin was lady product.” -- Terre T on Mike’s lack of knowledge about the pain reliever
“It’s no secret that he was one of the most anti-nugg crusaders.” -- Bryce on why he'd travel back in time to take care of William Hearst
“Maybe I’ll scale up on killing you.” – A ‘roid-raging Bryce on the next phase of his regimen
"So you ever go into the supply closet? Stick some stuff in your pockets?" -- Tom, asking about Don's heists of high-end Topps product
"I would love to be killed by a ghost." -- Sathingtron on his preferred demise
"Let Christ save you." -- Tom, suggesting a guide for Sathingtron's descent into the West Milford woods
"You can’t hurt what you can’t see." -- No Shoot-Up Pete on the benefits of invisibility
"You know what I would do if I was invisible? I would leave the studio right now." -- Tom on his stealth exit during Pete's lovesick laments about heroin addiction
"They can just get another Chinese guitarist, man, to take his place.” –
Rosie O’DonnellNo Shoot-Up Pete on the ease of replacing James Iha
"What, are you in My Morning Jacket?” -- Tom, inquiring about Jimmy’s razor-clogging facial hair
"I’ve discovered your weakness. The weakness is that Zod had about nine lines in that movie." -- Tom on the General's limited vocabulary
"It probably means 'stealing someone else's quotes'" -- Tom on the definition of "recidivism"
"Son, it’s a solid purchase. A solid investment." -- Paycheck, advising his 14-year-old self on the wisdom of buying Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash
"There’s stuff I gotta say that I just can’t get out in the Insane Clown Posse! I gotta do my thing." -- Violent J, embarking on a solo career
"It describes a very specific act." -- An industry insider on the controversial title of his new album
"There's not even room for my whole keyboard rig, I've just been told, which I'm kinda bummed about." -- A maja playa on the sacrifices of rocking sub-casinos
"Would I rather be trapped in Red Bank or Mordor?" -- Tom, pondering the lesser of two evil landscapes
Susan Christie - "Paint a Lady"
( Click here to buy Autumn Was a Lark)
The Wrens "Built In Girls"
( Click here to buy Secaucus)
Lost Sounds - "I Sit And I Wait"
( Click here to buy Lost Sounds)
Von Lmo - "Outside Of Time" (from Future Language)
The Blood Brothers - "Spit Shine Your Black Clouds"
( Click here to buy Young Machetes)
Petey, Tom, and DJ Terre T - "A Very Special Christmas" ("Rip into that bad boy!")
I've obtained legal counsel and received no cease-and-desist, so the recap show goes on:
Where's Lesley Sue Goldstein?: Only in the dark recesses of Spike's mind
- Harry calls (starts at 23:08) to file a Spike Report. He heard our favorite descended master of discipline on the most recent "Any Saturday", David Rothenberg’s WBAI program. Spike used the alias “Terry” for his participation in the “Fame Is Fleeting” game. In this contest, Rothenberg provides five arcane names, and if a listener identifies their claim to fleeting flame, they get a chance to throw one out to Rothenberg. Tom thinks it sounds like a fun game. Spike knew that Burt Ward played Robin ("That’s an easy one," Spike said) on the Batman television series, so he asked Rothenberg to provide the real name of 1960s pop star, Lesley Gore. He stumped the host. Tom does not fault Rothenberg's lack of knowledge because this is trivia that would only trigger a synapse of recognition in Spike's demented dome. My guess is this bit of info is nestled next to stuff like the birthplace of Sandra Cassel and Frankie Lymon's favorite strain of heroin (Choco from the Hartz Mountains of Germany).
Harry suggests continuing the Spike Report segments to keep tabs on Spike’s dances down the dial (and into space for Serious shows). Tom’s on board. Tom also points out that the authorities have equipped Spike with an ankle bracelet that beeps if he goes 50 feet outside his basement apartment.
- Purple Shirt calls (starts at 25:22), and Tom says he was thinking about him today. PS thought about Tom yesterday as he was riding through the Village on 3rd Street, just before 6th Avenue. All of a sudden he spotted Rico Fonseca's (YouTubery) museechians mural, which served as the backdrop for Tom’s autographed marathon picture premium (shot in beautiful black and white by Phil Morrison). He scaled down his tall bike and took a picture of himself in front of it. The image left PS stunned and happy.
Tom thought of PS when he was wondering if he had been arrested for his rent striking. PS continues to elude the authorities on that front. Tom hopes that PS is putting the money aside, but PS does not appear to be particularly prudent in his personal finances, depleting his stash by jetting off to Mother Russia. Tom reminds PS that he has a child’s future to consider. PS says that those were paid-for business trips, and the Russian government has invited him back. PS wants to know what kind of candy Tom wants him to smuggle over this go-round. Tom wants no part of a new art project because the last time, the Snickers bar ended up entwined with PS's underwear. PS promises that while the domestic bar was compromised, the Russian bar he sent Tom was clean. Tom didn’t touch it, but Mike the Associate Producer ended up stealing it from Tom’s candy bag and ate it like a hungry dog. Tom admits that the enticing bag is overflowing with snacks and both kinds of candy: chocolate and fudge.
PS sending out his FOT Secret Santa package tomorrow, a holiday gift-giving initiative launched by HOFer Jason on the FOT message board. Tom wants to know who he got, but PS says the rules prohibit the on-air reveal. PS wants no trouble from Jason, who he saw last Sunday along with felllow HOFer -- and WFMU Swag Mistress -- Megan Murphy last Sunday. The trio talked about some little idea that Tom knows nothing about. PS says that the normally British-based Jason is in the States on a visa, and he’ll be kicked out of the country in three weeks. Tom GOMPs PS for spreading people’s business like he’s the new Hedda Hopper. Tom is not interested in hearing PS spin some weird bagatelle or dish some fontastical crazy talk on the air.
PS calls back (starts at 31:28) to say that he's very displeased about getting hung up on. Tom tells him that he’s bush-league, while PS continues to gossip by suggesting that Tom serve as the MC for an on-air Megan-Jason matrimony. PS tries to hang up on Tom, but Tom is already done with the Williamsburg pervert.
- A jumpy, but “straight” Aaron calls (starts at 32:07) with a fresh story about a missing paycheck. His boss at Mooby’s just made a $900 check out to him, so he smashed it over to Shop-Rite for a snack fix before returning home. When he got home, the check was not in his pocket. He returned to Shop-Rite and saw it floating away in the parking lot. He found it. Tom’s relieved to hear of his lucky break. Aaron observes that Tom is up to his usual tricks of getting angry at callers, so Tom wants whatshisname to help him change his mood. Aaron wants to know if Tom enjoys snacks because they always make him happier.
Tom and Aaron recently discussed he lawsuit Tom and his frat brothers brought against the producers of Borat. Tom is forced to admit defeat because a judge refused to hear the case, tossing it out on the grounds they had all signed releases to appear in the film. Tom insists that his release was clearly forged by one of the film’s producers. Aaron still suspects Tom might be pulling his leg due to the unbelievable coincidences of Tom being a WFMU DJ, serving as a fraternity mentor, and then running into Ali G when they arrived in Montana on their RV road trip. Aaron thinks the story sounds fontastic. Tom reminds Aaron that they did not run into Ali G, who is apparently another comic guise of Sacha Baron Cohen, but, rather, the Kazakhstani cultural learner, Borat Sagdiyev. Tom recalls seeing Cohen’s name in the legal briefs, and Aaron is compelled to point out that he’s a Jewish man. Tom wants to delve deeper into what prompted this declaration of religious faith, but Aaron says he simply finds amusement in Cohen inhabiting an aggressively anti-semitic character. He has nothing against Jewish people, as long as they are entertaining.
Aaron says he believes Tom because he sounds like he’s being totally upfront, but there is still some lingering doubt about the veracity of the litigation. Tom tells him to Google “Borat lawsuit frat” if he requires further confirmation. Tom hates the movie because his family made fun of him at Thanksgiving, and now he hates Mr. Cohen doubly since he and his brohams lost the case. Aaron has some more bad news for Tom: Cohen is going to drop another movie based on a character named Bruno, a gay fashion dude who delivered a segment called "Funkyzeit mit Brüno" (“Funkytime with Bruno”) on the Da Ali G program. Tom appreciates the warning and plans to watch out for him to avoid getting fooled again.
Tom also mentions that Cohen pulled the same thing earlier this year by posing as a French Formula Un driver to trick a bunch of NASCAR drivers in North Carolina. He specifically targeted a famous driver named Ricky Bobby and threatened to take his crown. Aaron saw this particular stunt in the documentary, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby. Tom doesn’t like it, but Aaron says this is just part of the classic Cohen schtick. As he’s stated before, Aaron doesn’t think Cohen is a bad guy, although if he really did loop lines in the offending scenes, he agrees that’s pretty messed up. Tom confirms that that’s exactly what he did, and he’s dreading the DVD release, which will make him a national punchline as viewers identify his head via freeze-frame. Aaron recommends fighting Cohen, but they already had the case thrown out. Aaron was thinking more in terms of getting violent satisfaction by tracking Cohen down and punching him. (I’d recommend throwing him down a well.)
Aaron starts giggling as he recalls Ali G pitching ideas to Donald Trump, but Tom is not amused and demands that he pick his side. It’s either Sacha Baron Cohen or Tom Scharpling. You can’t have it both ways. Aaron is torn over his admiration for Tom and his love of SBC's funny hijinks. Tom gets rid of him for the indecisiveness. You’re either with Tom or against him.
UPDATE: "Borat is also suing Fox. He thought he was part of a documentary. He didn't realize it was a comedy. He signed the release form when he was drunk and he was weak from having sexy time. He wanted to make clear that he would have only been anti-Semitic if he knew it was not going out in America." -- Sacha Baron Cohen, accepting his award at British Comedy Awards on 12/13/06. (Borat was unable to attend the event because he was the guest of honor at Holocaust Denial Conference in Iran.)
Scooter - Crank It Up"
- BeBe “The Hunter” Williams checks in (38:34) from the wilds of Myspace (via Old Virginny) to celebrate the successful wrangling of 10 Clubbers. He actually found more than 10, but for now, Tom will focus on removing the first wave of offenders. BeBe earned his stripes and will ride the glory right into Tom’s Top 8. There is a downside to the deletions because Tom was at 2108 and looking forward to hitting 2112 as a tribute to Canadian progressive rock band, Rush. BeBe is apparently very vigilant in his detective work as he noticed that Tom added a Clubber just yesterday. Tom’s a little unsettled by his devotion. BeBe laments the friends who have cloaked their movie list by setting their profiles to private. BeBe says that he will need Tom’s password to properly pursue these suspects. Tom says that is a line he will not let BeBe cross. BeBe can understand that. Tom believes that BeBe has the bloodlust and is addicted to the thrill of the kill. BeBe downplays his vigor, saying he simply wants to get the job done.
BeBe says Virginia is okay, but he prefers the north. Tom wants to know if he ever sings "An American Trilogy", a song made popular by Elvis Presley, who performed it in his Aloha From Hawaii: Via Satellite spectacular in 1973. Tom tells Mike to pull (much better than last week’s “fetch") the Presley record so he can send the song out to BeBe in the second music set.
I've always been partial to this version:
Manowar - "An American Trilogy"
- Wayne calls (starts at 41:30) to read a New York Post article about the Borat lawsuit, but Tom’s lawyer, Olivier Taillieu, already read it to him earlier in the day. This doesn’t stop Wayne, who recites a passage that mentions the perPETuity of the film on DVD posing ongoing problems for the plaintiffs, including harm to their ability to seek work. Tom says that he has in fact been rejected from a job interview because of his appearance in the film. Wayne will look for Tom’s head in his bootleg copy of the film. Wayne says that a forged signature on a waiver sounds illegal to him, but Tom tells him that he has no recourse after the judge’s order.
Out of this world, long hairs: the Yacht Rock duo are just a flux capacitor away from non-existence
- Tom proposes (starts at 44:05) a topic that revolves around the concept of a time machine. Tom says that if you could hop in and do anything, you would obviously start with big things that fix the world and make it a better place, such as thwarting Adolf Hiter. However, Tom wants to talk about the small things that might be the 50th item on your to-do list after you've successfully righted most of the Earthly wrongs, a kind of My Name Is Earl-ish approach to time travel. Tom gives an example: when Jim Messina was about to meet Kenny Loggins, you’d thump either one of them over the head to stop the sit-down, thus stopping the formation of Loggins-Messina. Another potential small thing would be to go back for flaw seats to watch Winona Ryder shoplift. Mike would opt to stop the Monica Lewinsky scandal, i.e., he would murder Linda Tripp with an evil bloodlust that included a ski mask and piano wire. Tom wants to keep the violence limited to hitting people over the head for temporary incapacitation.
The Illusionist: Sir Ian, Sir Ian, Sir Ian is not really a wizard; it was just .... acting!
- Jeff in Middletown calls (starts at 49:16) to say that he would like to go back in time to thump Saul Zaentz in the head to prevent the production of The Lord of the Rings film trilogy. Jeff hates the 17 hours of boring, and Tom agrees that they are the worst movies ever. (Ditto Randall Graves!) Tom saw the first one and was shocked that that was all they could accomplish in three hours. A friend made Jeff watch the first one in his dorm room, and he fell asleep in an uncomfortable chair. Tom was told that the second one was much better, but then he discovered it consisted of two Hobbits hanging out in a walking tree for two hours while the third hobbit was off cavorting around. In short: horrifically boring yet again. Tom refused to see the third one, which is too bad because, like The Matrix: Revelations, it really tied the whole series together.
Jeff can’t understand why some of his friends bought all the SE DVDs, including double-dipping when necessary. Tom would only watch them for charity. Jeff would also do it for a good cause if he could fall asleep during the marathon. Tom says he’d have to stay up and write a book report when it was over. Tom concludes that the series is about the desire to avoid growing up and remain nine years old forever. Hence the guy in a wizard costume, the guys in the elf and hobbit outfits, and the brouhaha about a ring that will prevent their stilted fontasy land from being ruined.
- A caller says (starts at 53:00) that he would not waste his time-travel opportunity on trifling movies. Instead, he would convince George Michael to stick with Andrew Ridgeley, thus preventing the tragic breakup of Wham! in 1986. He had just heard a Wham! Christmas song on the radio and realized how far Michael has fallen. He thinks this act would be a great contribution to the musical scene. Tom loves it.
- Longtime listener James in Burbank, CA, makes his first call (starts at 53:51), and Tom thinks he sounds like a good, levelheaded guy unlike the unmentionable congregation that is now dead to him. Tom can now only be reached via phone. James would return to 1976, the year of his birth, to enact atypical violence by hunting down Bob Dylan and mercifully breaking his hands. James believes that Dylan should have retired after releasing Desire. Tom points out that if James broke his hands, Dylan would have only been able to sing on albums such as Knocked Out Loaded. James agrees that an a cappella version of the album is even less desirable. James would convince Dylan to hang it up by playing the albums to enlighten him to their awfulness. Tom urges James to bring vinyl to the session, so Dylan is not confused by seeing a mysterious “compact disc” for Modern Times. Tom thanks James for a top-notch call. James is 1/1.
- DJ Terre T from WFMU’s Cherry Blossom Clinic heard every Saturday from 3 to 6 p.m. calls (starts at 56:58) to bend the time-travel game to get some medical advice. She’s experiencing major back pain and wants to know if there’s a difference between the OTC drugs Advil and Motrin. She left the house sans Advil and Pete’s gas station only sells Motrin. Tom solicits an opinion from Mike, but Terre T says that he thought Motrin was lady product. It’s not. Oh, Mike.
- Bryce calls (starts at 58:41) to recommend something else to the caller who was just asking about pain reliever. The item is all natural, but he can’t elaborate too much due to the standards of the air and stuff. Tom says that he can say “weed”. Bryce just smoked some, and he thinks Terre T should do the same. Bryce has been afflicted with a bad back since he was 11 and that’s how he gets through it. Bryce also wants to chime in on the topic, and he agrees that the first order of business is to go to Germany and deal with that. Bryce would become invisible, walk into Hitler’s office, and do the deed right there before the stuff escalates. Tom advises killing him before it starts, but Bryce thinks he might not be a bad dude until then.
Bryce is operating under an alternative history found in the books of Harry Turtledove. Tom’s seen the books and wonders if, in an alternative universe, Dick Francis would write about animals other than horses. Tom suggests sharks, while Bryce wants to say cheetahs. Bryce decides that he will write an alternate history book about Dick Francis doing cheetahs books. His name du plume for the project will be Harvey Turtledove.
He’d also go back in time and get invisible to liberate pot smoking by taking care of William Hearst because he was a leading anti-nugg crusader of his time. He’d, of course, also go back and get Jerry healthy by giving him some stuff that Rutager’s been giving him. The substance is some sort of cream that you rub on and do other stuff with it, too. Bryce used to weigh 150, and now he’s up to 370 pounds of solid muscle. Tom calls it steroids, but they call them “health tabs”. Bryce is on his fifth weight bench this week because he keeps cracking them. Tom suggests scaling back on health tabs, but Bryce prefers scaling up on killing Tom. Bryce is hit with a surge of aggression and becomes very angry about Tom cutting him off to ask another question. He starts screaming wildly and hangs up before Tom can ask him what Dead show he would attend. Perhaps Bryce could land a job with The Jock Squad and earn some money to upgrade the lean-to.
Mmmmmmm ... tastes just like fresh-perked!
- Eeax from the [ ] says (starts at 1:03) that he would go back in time to get a better phone installation. After that was complete, he would go after the CEO who introduced Ayds, the unfortunately-named, appetite-suppressant candy. Eeax does a shoutout to Miles in the [ ], and then asks Tom if he grants shoutouts. Tom responds with a gentlemenly GOMP. Tom doesn't do shoutouts.
- Bryce returns (starts at 1:05) with an answer: May 8th, 1977, Barton Hall at Cornell University. The Dead opened with “NMB”, and Tom earns the nickname “Grateful Dunce” (he proudly accepts it) for not knowing the tune. Bryce wants Tom to ask Mike, who identifies it as “New Minglewood Blues”, not to be confused with “New New Minglewood Blues”. The band encored with “One More Saturday Night”. Bryce thinks Mike will be willing to serenade Tom with it, but it’s not one of his preferred cuts. Bryce counters by proposing a duet of Buddy Holly’s "Not Fade Away" as only GD used to do it. Tom says their version was terrible, and Bryce starts singing it. Bryce wants to know why Tom isn’t singing with him. Tom says that he doesn’t like the song, and Bryce abruptly shifts into a roaring, renewed threat to kill him.
- Don calls (starts at 1:07) to answer DJ Terre T’s pharmaceutical query: Advil and Motrin are both ibuprofen-based anti-inflammatory remedies. Either one will do the trick for back pain. Tom takes notice of Don’s commanding voice, which Don attributes to being stuck at work and still in “office mode”. He works as a graphic designer for Topps, and while he's worked on all four sports, he now focuses on football product. (I’d like to think that Don was responsible for airbrushing that afrolicious 1976 Topps Oscar Gamble card!) Tom wants to know what players he’s working on, but Don explains that the company focuses more on branding a particular set or product to appeal to certain demographics. For example, Topps also owns the Bazooka confections and launched a line of Bazooka baseball and football for the younger crowd. Don wishes he wrote the Bazooka Joe comics that envelop the chewing gum, and Tom says he has ideas for future storylines. Sadly, Don doesn’t have any ins in the Bazooka Joe publishing world.
Don gives a preview of what 2007 will bring from Topps football, citing a new edition of the base brand, a new entry in the shiny, metallic Topps Finest series, and a top-secret new brand that Don can’t reveal. However, he does recommend saving those couch-cushion pennies for this hott product. Don says that the art department will get some free boxes of the lower-end product, but he has to buy the top-shelf stuff in retail stores just like everyone else. While he does get reference samples of his work, they have holes punched in them to prohibit resale on eBay. Tom wonders if Don ever slinks into the supply closet to swipe some merch, but Don says that his office doesn’t even have such repositories. Don is in the design, marketing, and think tank area in Manhattan, while the manufacturing is spread out in plants in California, Wisconsin, Texas, and elsewhere.
Tom thinks Don could have a successful voiceover career, and Don would pursue it if he could tear himself away from his desk. The downside of doing that would be Topps football cards suffering in quality and Terre T not getting her pain relief. Tom takes advantage of Don’s amazing pipes by having him record the famous jingle of WFMU’s parent company, Mennen. Don does two solid takes of “By ... Mennen”, but has to go before he truly nails it. Don’s a no-nonsense guy and couldn’t neglect his pressing task of cropping an action shot of Chad Pennington.
- Sathingtron spooks (starts at 1:12) Tom with an Art Bell routine about the Weird, NJ circuit. The presence of haunted houses and ghosts scares Tom, whereas S-tron lives for that stuff and thinks it’s fun. The topic inspires Tom to reveal a new list of the three ways he will ultimately die:
S-tron isn’t sure that ghosts have the capability to murder living humans, but he would love to be killed by one if they do. He had his first paranormal experience this past Friday on the extremely-haunted Clinton Road in West Milford, a frequent source of stories for Weird, N.J. S-tron and some friends traversed down this dark and winding road in the woods and stopped on the bridge at Dead Man’s Curve. Along with some other gathered ghost hunters, S-tron threw quarters into the river. A minute later, they heard jingling sounds behind him. The ghost of a young boy who died there had made the coins fall from the sky over the bridge. A bit later, they heard a gunshot, and S-tron saw sparks on the other side of the bridge. He got excited and only one other person could confirm seeing it. S-tron says this is pretty mild stuff compared to his friend from West Milford whose tales include blood-soaked roads, another friend getting possessed, seeing spirits, and a creepy phone message of a low voice saying “You Are Not Alone” amidst white noise. Tom tops that by mentioning the then-Sathington’s seven-minute bass solo that he recorded for the theme song contest. S-tron wants to professionally re-record it for use as Tom’s bed music.
S-tron will continue to listen to the show during the car ride back to Clinton Road, where he will tempt fate by walking into the ghoul-laden woods. S-tron is exhilarated by the prospects of walking into the dark unknown, and Tom will not shed a tear if he dies by the hand of a ghost. Tom thinks the ghosts have every right to kill him for invading their turf. S-tron appears to be getting a bit delirious, mentioning something about meeting up with Séance Knowles in the woods, which continue to serve as a dumping ground for dead bodies. He also almost forgot the most important reason for avoding the woods at night: KKK and Newbridge COS meetings. Tom thinks this is crazy talk and suspects it’s just Dr. Stupid and his two fans setting up a film projector. S-tron says he will fill Tom in on any crazy happenings next week. Tom tells him to be brave, wear a cross around his neck, and let Christ save him.
- No Shoot-Up Pete calls (starts at 1:18) with his promised topic, but it requires some backstory. Tom didn’t really plan anything for tonight because he figured he could coast on the Pete-a-thon. On the Monday before last week’s show, he had a relationship-ending argument about his heroin addiction with his girlfriend, who threw him out of the apartment. He wandered around and eventually stayed with his friend, John, who still lives with his mom. Pete’s 30, so it was rough. Pete had his last health tab that night and pondered the mysteries of life like how love makes you do crazy things. He concluded that he can control the ocean of love by getting past the waves of arguments. Pete also believes that the key is to become invisible because you can’t hurt what you can’t see. Pete hopes to unlock the secrets of invisibility to help him with his new girl. He had been teetering between his existing girlfriend and this other girl, so getting thrown out by the former made the choice a bit easier.
Tom says that if he was invisible, he would leave the studio right now. Pete doesn’t like to hear that because Tom inspired him to quit doing bad things. Tom can’t believe that one week after getting closure with No Smokin’ Joe, he’s got some guy telling him that he’s the reason he quit smack. Pete says that he curled into the fetal position in his bed and successfully fought the urge to shoot up by thinking about the universal desire to cloak oneself. Tom got the dreams of invisibility out of his system after he saw Zapped, the award-winning 1982 film starring Scatman Crothers, William Aames, and F. Scott Baio. Tom makes it clear that he does not believe in the possibility of become invisible. Pete still has hope because the cavemen never thought there would be automobiles.
Tom says that while his invisibility would be like Zapped, Pete would be like the mad scientist in Hollow Man. Pete is not familiar with that because he’s a music guy, not a television guy. Tom tells him that it’s a film in which Kevin Bacon’s character was a horrible rapist. Tom disputes that he’s a music guy because he likes Tom Waits. If Tom was invisible, he would go into Waits’s house and smash him over the head with a raddyator. Pete likes everything from Abba to Zappa, including the work of Billy Corgan, so Tom requests a burned copy of Mule Variations and Mellon Collie and The Infinite Sadness. Tom's excited about the reformation of The Smashing Pumpkins, but Pete informs him that original members D’arcy Wretzky and James Iha will likely not be involved. Tom says it’s not the Pumpkins without James Iha, but Pete thinks that Corgan and drummer James Chamberlin can just get some other Chinaman (the preferred nomenclature is Asian-American, son) guitarist to take his spot. Tom immediately gets rid of him by saying “You’re … racist” to the tune of the Mennen jingle. If Tom had a time machine, he'd go back nine minutes and kill himself for pressing line 4 and letting Pete on the air.
- A caller gets things back on track (starts at 1:25) by predicting that time travel will be necessary next week to rescue Sathingtron from the weird woods. For now, he’d go to semi-rural New York in 1714 to stop the settlement of the evil town of Goshen. Tom would travel to Yazger’s Farm in 1966, burrow 20 feet into the ground, and hollow out the entire stretch of land. He'd then wait for Woodstock to start and get ready for the real show: the ground giving way and the hippies plummeting into the abyss.
- Jimmy from Louisville, one of the mutants who polluted the Halloween show, calls (starts at 1:28) to complain about the free Schick Titanium Quattro razor he received by signing up on the Friends of Tom website. (Hurry up! Mennen is ending this promotion on 12/31/06!) In a nutshell: all the blades got clogged after just one stroke. Tom wonders if he’s a member of the hirsute rock group, My Morning Jacket. Jimmy says his week of growth is a bit shaggy, but not unkempt like the famous beard of Jay-Z. Jimmy somehow confused the Brooklyn-based rapper/entrepreneur with Texas blues rockers ZZ Top. Jimmy points out that MMJ recently played the Lousiville Lebowski Fest. Guess what movie Tom doesn’t like anymore?
Jimmy is a mild fan of the band, but he agrees with Tom that MMJ sound like an inferior Flaming Lips, who also now stink. He also has a personal connection to their music -- one of the songs on MMJ’s Z album was written about the suicide of one Jimmy's friend's brothers. Tom is sorry for this loss, but thinks the album was mistitled and needed about six more z’s. Jimmy wants to know if the Good Guys won in 2006, and Tom says that despite the election results last month, victory is near.
My Morning Jacket - "What A Wonderful Man"
- A weak-armed caller says (starts at 1:30) he would liquidate all of his assets and travel back to the beginning of the 1968 pro football season. He’d go to Vegas and lay it all on the Jets to win Super Bowl III. After winning his bet, he’d be superfantastic rich throughout the 1970s with all the chicks with loose morals clamoring for him. Tom recognizes this as the Back to the Future II strategy where Bif Tannen headed back to 1955 with Dr. Brown's discarded sports almanac. Tom warns the caller about the consequences of his actions -- if he bets on the wrong game, then sports history is changed forever. Speaking of sports history, the caller reveals that he was the legendary Dave Kingman guy who insulted Tom for his all-or-nothing approach to comedy. Tom thinks this guy is a minor league Dave Kingman who couldn’t even make it in the big leagues. Scouts would watch him make his call to the show and quickly realize that he lacked five tools. Tom’s a five-tool player. The Best Show isn't all just fun and games.
- Tom has a conversation (starts at 1:56) with General Zod, who patiently held on for 20 minutes during the second musical interlude. A typically defiant Zod issues his usual parade of terse directives (rise/kneel before him) and seems to share Tom’s interest in seeing the Richard Donner cut of Superman II. Tom gets frustrated by Zod’s failure to stay on topic due his limited amount of dialogue in the film. He’s also unable to recite Tom’s favorite Zod line: "Who is this Superman?!" Zod is GOMPed.
- Scott from Tokyo has the unenviable task (starts at 2:00) of trying to follow Zod’s soundboard stylings while still coming down from the indescribable high of his appearance on the show last week. He’s a longtime admirer of Tom, so he was thrilled to finally get the chance to participate. Scott gets off to a great start by taking advantage of his stentorian Skype connection to unleash an uncanny rendition of the classic Folger’s coffee advertisement, which he found on a website called Recidivism dot org while doing some post-show research. Apparently, someone is publishing finely-detailed and very accurate recaps of each installment of The Best Show on WFMU. Tom is shocked and thinks Scott is pulling his leg. He wants to know if he’s quoted within the text, and Scott tells him that there are many direct quotes highlighted in a prefatory section before the recap proper begins. Tom announces that he has no choice but to sue the author over this unauthorized material. Scott supports the lawsuit and tells Tom that Recidivism has installed the highly-lucrative ($1/month) Google ad system. Tom wants a piece of that action because he’s currently not getting a red nickel of revenue from it.
Scott thinks the whole enterprise is a mockery of a travesty of a sham. Tom has never heard of the site and needs to investigate it further before pursuing official legal action. Everybody has an angle, and Tom needs to find out where this Recidivism guy is coming from. Scott is so out of the loop that he doesn’t even know what a bonehead word like "recidivism" means, but he assumes it’s something bad. Tom thinks it probably means something to the effect of “stealing someone else’s quotes”. If the case ever went to trial, I think that Judge Davies would ultimately whir, thud, and squeal in the defendant's favor. Could Tom handle losing another lawsuit?
Scott also discusses Four Eyed Monsters, an independent feature film he recently discovered online. The film’s creators spent the past year promoting it via video podcasts and were able to get it shown at Cinema Village in NYC earlier this month. Scott was captivated and enthralled by these podcasts. Tom is not familiar with the project, so he requests the one-liner. Scott delivers: “Young couple examines dating in the Web 2.0 world.” Tom is intrigued. Scott mentioned the film in his last Tokyo Calling podcast, and the director tracked him down. He decided not to press charges, but the makers of The Long Walk to New York forced Scott to abandon his plan to make a similar documentary about a trek from Tokyo to the other part of Japan. Scott also put the word out for The Best Show podcast and nine people have already made their way to the FOT site. Tom does a quick promo for Tokyo Calling and bids Sweet Scott farewell.
College of Rock: Minneapolis-based students play a study hall session in 1981
- Paycheck in Toronto calls (starts at 2:07) with the same velvet baritone and command of the Engalish language as Scott in Tokyo. Paycheck would board a time machine to visit his 14-year-old self when he was just starting to feel out punk rock 'n roll music with a starter collection consisting of Loco Live on cassette and The Misfits' bottom-shelf Earth A.D.. Paycheck vividly recalls standing in a head shop/record store in a pre-Internet world where you had to fly blind and roll the dice when buying music. You couldn’t sample it (Paycheck never had the stones to ask the angry hippy clerks to spin something for him), and you certainly couldn’t steal a digital version like the thugs of today. Tom longs for this time where after getting ripped off and taking it on the chin enough times, picking a good album was that much sweeter as you listened to it alone in your four-cornered room. Tom mentions that people are telling him that Ghostface Killah’s More Fish is not that good, even though it was just released today. Tom caught Matthew from Fluxblog teefin’ on it, so he will report him to the RIAA, as well as the Theodore Unit. Tom wants the $500 Ghostface doll (who wouldn’t?).
Paycheck was clutching a $9 copy of Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash, but his buddy turned to him with disdain and told him it was college rock garbage. Total ear candy. Paycheck put it back and didn't inject it into his system until he was 22. He never got to see the look on his buddy’s face when “Takin' A Ride” kicked in, taking him to school and shattering his sonic delusions. Instead, Paycheck picked up some Chilliwack records, a bad 1980s Vibrators release, and the worst offering from the UK Subs. If he could go back in time, Paycheck would tell his younger self that The Replacements were a solid investment.
Tom also thought of Paycheck during last week’s discussion about being inundated with commercials for products that were not available anywhere in the local area. In Paycheck’s case, he had to endure American candy and cereal advertisements, such as the cops-and-robbers spot for Cookie Crisp cereal, which never made its way to Canada due to dietary standards. Tom can understand this decision because the “cookies” were actually bad, synthetic facsimiles, not unlike the deceptively-caloric Chips Ahoy Thins sold at the Consolidated Cardboard snack station.
Paycheck closes with an exciting score he made by unearthing a gem at the WFMU Record Fair. He dropped $3 on a sealed copy of Geto Boys member Willie D’s solo album, Controversy, which he later discovered is one of the rarest rap CDs of all-time. He put it on eBay and sold it today for $175. Tom declares Paycheck the best caller for his ability to stay on topic, bring some efficient fun, and then leave. Tom says that he wants callers to either be totally on book or totally crazy like Pete shouting into a garbage can. He quickly takes it back after realizing that there is value in the middle ground.
- Mike continues (starts at 2:17) The Stentorian Hour by asking Tom for advice on how to find his cat, Mrs. Whiskers. He went into the back yard and called her name in requisite high pitch, but she didn’t respond. She’s been missing for 48 hours, and Mike is afraid one of the neighborhood crazies has/will get her. Tom recommends laying some food out and putting pictures up around town. Tom knew that this was an Undergroundling who was goofing on him the whole time, but he was leery of being the jerk who hung up on the guy with a lost animal.
- Tom switches (starts at 2:19) to a new topic: the dumbest message board on the Intronet. The portal where every poster is a moron, yet you can’t look away. Mike offers the View Askew board, which provides updates on all the Smithverse satellite players, such as Brian O’Harollohan, Jeff Anderson, and Walt Flanagan. And let’s not forget Bryan Johnson! Tom thinks that Smith has hoodwinked everyone to the point where Jason Mewes is relatively talented when put up against the Stop ‘N Shop riff-raff.
- A caller chimes in (starts at 2:22) with the parade of stupidity displayed on the Western PA Juggalos board. Tom is surprised that ICP are still active, and the caller says that one of them released a solo album earlier this year. Tom imagines Violent J expressing his desire to branch out into a solo career because he has things he needs to say that don’t fit into the standard ICP template. The caller thinks Shaggy 2 Dope is worse because he threatened to fight a friend of his. His friend defended himself, so S2D sent his manager, Rupert Threadwell, after him.
- Mike from Woodbridge calls (starts at 2:25) with some sad news. He was hanging out with Darth Vader about an hour ago, and Vader drowned. Tom wonders if this is really Woodbridge putting their best foot forward.
- Chuck from Garwood claims (starts at 2:26) to have the definitive worst message board: General Mayhem. As the name implies, the board is general chaos, and every thread is a race to see who can say the n-word first. Chuck was hooked by a thread that focused on harassing fat chicks with live video feeds for naughty exchanges. Tom thinks it sounds like a great place and can’t wait to check it out.
- Tristan calls (starts at 2:27) to offer Questionable Content, a really bad online comic that he always checks despite it being pure pain to read. Tristan keeps going back to try to find out what people see in the four frames that eschew proper pacing in favor of cramming in as many jokes as possible. Tristan compares it to the kid that would result from Pitchfork having sexytime with a soap opera. Tom informs Tristan that BeBe reported him as being a Clubber. Tristan thinks someone hacked into his account (he kinda likes the film, but it hasn't been a fave since middle school), but either way, he will have to remove Fight Club by midnight to remain a Myspace Friend of Tom. Tristan is thrown by Tom calling him “sweetheart”.
- Tom reveals (starts at 2:30) his picks for the two message boards that drive him the most nuts. The first is the Okay Player board, which is connected to The Ruts and Erykah Badu scene. The other is The Velvet Rope forum, the place for warshed-up never-weres to puff up their chests like proud roosters over their semi-moment of fleeting success and give My Chemical Romance career advice.
- The circus rolls (starts at 2:32) into town with Walker, Texas Ranger in tow.
- A caller wants to know (starts at 2:34) what's up the hate for The Velvet Rope, ground zero for the major players in the biz. The caller is not only a legit major player, but he also posts on the board using the handle "majaplaya". He's done about 750 posts, but Tom can't recall seeing any of them. He chimed in on the MCR discussion, suggesting the band do a little less Queen, and a little more Canadian rock superstar Kim Mitchell, who he's toured with over the years. The caller wants Tom to sing "it" -- "Go For a Soda", the international hit from Mitchell's 1984 album, Akimbo Alogo -- but Tom barely remembers "it". The caller is not pleased and calls Tom a jerk. The caller played with Mitchell during the 1992-1994 tours, which did gangbusters up in Rochester, Eerie, Ithaca, and, especially, Port Huron. Tom assumes the Canadian shows were nuts, and the caller heard the same thing. One of his biggest life regrets is that he didn't get to take part in those gigs because some stuff on his record prohibited safe passage through customs. He has five DUIs and four FDUIs -- Flagrant Driving Under the Influence. In one arrest for the latter charge, the caller was doing smoky burnouts while giving the cops the bird and spraying them with beer. The authorities tend to not appreciate it when someone flaunts their drunkenness.
However, the caller thinks it was probably worth it because now he got the chance to brag to Tom and the radio audience and let everyone groove to his whole thing. Tom disputes the grooviness and thinks it would have been more worth it to play those Kim Mitchell Canadian shows in front of huge crowds. The caller also played some great shows with the similarly-named King Missile and Danny & the Juniors, although he got hit with another bummer when he joined the latter group the same week they were forced to change their name to Danny's Junior. He played with them from 1997 until his firing a few months ago. The caller didn't have a great relationship with Danny, Jr., the son of Danny Jones, the band's original booking agent who owned the Danny & the Juniors name. When he croaked, the son took over the management role and changed the name. The caller performed solo as "Danny", singing and replicating the sound of classics like "ATH" on his MIDI keyboard. He also threw in some original tunes, which appear on his new CD. He can't say the title because it's XXX-rated (it describes a very specific act), but there's nothing dirty in the actual song content. He hoped that the album name would help brew some controversy, but all of his VR posts have been deleted by "JGFlash".
Tom doesn't think he's really connected in the music industry, but the caller says he'll soon be touring "sub-casinos" with Dwight Twilley. He tells Tom to "read it and weep", but Tom predicts that he'll be the one doing the weeping. The venues are a little smaller than a casino and can't even hold the caller's entire keyboard rig. It turns out that the caller will be touring as Dwight Twilley because Twilley pulled his calf muscle. Tom asks if Twilley is aware of these shows, but the caller asks for a definition of "aware". Tom clarifies by asking if Twilly knows that he's doing it. The caller requests a definition of "know", which Tom provides: do the things Twilley's mind has recorded as information include the fact that the caller is going out to tour sub-casinos under his name. The answer: no with an explanation. Twilley's younger brother, Dwayne, said via e-mail that it might be something he would think about. Not only does Dwayne have no claim to Dwight's name, but the two brothers are currently embroiled in a feud.
The caller also toured as The Raspberries for half a show. The newly-buff Eric Carmen got word and pulled up to Rochester to make the caller eat a knuckle sandwich. Tom concludes that he's a barely-connected fraud who is going on VR telling everybody how it is. The caller says that's how the playa works and hopes to start a consulting business to weed out doomed bands and help the lucky few make a hit record. The caller doesn't think Tom's voice is very happening, so he wants him to make it lower. Tom takes it down a few octaves, and the caller samples it on his Korg, which he last updated in 1994. Armed with the sample, the caller will now go on tour as Tom Scharpling. Tom wishes him luck because he has no history of filling clubs. Tom does, however, think he is a bigger celebrity than the caller despite not playing with Kim Mitchell or Men At Work's Greg Ham. The caller admits that the MAW shows got kinda cancelled. Tom wants to know the biggest crowd the caller has ever played for, but the caller prefers to tell him the highest stage he's ever been on -- 3 feet. Tom says he's been on higher stages, and the caller wonders what that was like. Tom says it was pretty exciting.
The caller has not been signed to major or indie labels, but did record for a cassette label called Jeffco, which is run by his older brother. Tom mentions a current VR thread where people are ripping on Joanna Newsom, who the caller thinks is awful. Tom is also not a fan of Ms. Newsom, but points out that at least she's doing it. The caller says that if he was Newsom, he would ditch the harp and play a MIDI keyboard. Tom thinks that if she gets more popular, the caller will tour as her. He likes the idea and proposes a package: Twilley, Newsom, Scharpling, and Eric Carmen. The caller vows to get revenge on Carmen by rocking the sub-casinos. Tom wishes the caller good luck, and he returns the favor by offering good luck on Tom's death. He threatens to MIDI Tom in the forehead. An extremely cordial exchange follows, but the caller gets Tom with a "Go, die" on the way out.
- An Undergroundling claims (starts at 2:53) that Tom attended his party last weekend and ruined his statue. This call was apparently retribution for Tom's mockery of the View Askew world. Tom is fascinated by a universe in which he hates all of its inhabitants. Tom's not sure if he'd rather be trapped in Red Bank or Mordor.
- Weirder Jon from Maplewood calls (starts at 2:54) to say that the "Weirder Jon" who called two shows ago was a rude impostor.
On the next ... The Best Show on WFMU: GOOD GUYS VICTORY CELEBRATION AND THE PLAN TO TRIUMPH AGAIN IN 2007!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
For No Shoot-Up Pete:
©2006, Recidivism, so you can't nick it.