"Let's do it for Santa Claus. I'm doin' this one for Santa Claus." -- Tom, sending the tentpole up to the North Pole
"Why do all those guys have that meathead helmet? He looks like Tim Blake Nelson if you dropped like eight pounds of hair on his head." -- Tom, performing a transplant from the Illinois thug to the less-endowed character actor
"You just tell me the truth, Fernando! Look, whatever happened happened, but look Fernando, you just gotta tell me the truth!" -- The uglier brother of Paulie Walnuts, recounting an exchange with a co-worker while seated next to Tom at a fancy restaurant
[More to come.]
"And then Bryan Adams came on doin' 'Reggae Christmas' and all H-ell would break l-oose." -- PBR, setting the wild scene inside his neighbor's row house basement
"No, it's your mind's isle. Like your mind's an island in the middle of the ocean that's your head. Why?" -- PBR, noting the location of his stranded brandy sniffer from the early 1980s
"Oh, I'm sure you'll do somethin' that's gonna aggro-vate me. I don't know what it's gonna be." -- PBR, vowing to lead Tom to the whipping stockades for an unspecified infraction
"Corruption will have, if not no, then the smallest possible place in my admino-stration." -- PBR, distancing himself from the dirty politics of Gov. Mike Bla-go-je-vich
"Well, they got back together, and I'm sure made, if not thousands, hundreds." -- PBR, assessing the lucrative reunion of The Hooters
"Of course the belts had guns at the end of them. They weren't loaded." -- PBR, describing the weapons Werner and Rutager used during their Peace Operative training
"That's what's so great about Newbridge -- it's a total melon pot." -- PBR, promising to honor the town's diversity with a mash-up of Philly sports colors
"I don't really know. Do you ride it? Well, they're called a rhino, so I guess you ride it. No, they'd be called a rhido then. I don't know. You grab it by the horn, and you just swing?" -- PBR, trying to determine the best use of his odd-toed ungulate
"Now I'm bummed. [crippler hit] Now I'm not." -- PBR, getting over the disappointing size of the Mayor's ranch house with some weed intake
"And no arguments, okay Tom? This one's on youse." -- PBR, calling for a crematorium on criticisms of his fiscal spending
[More to come.]
John Denver & The Muppets - "Little Saint Nick"
( Click here to buy A Christmas Together)
Milk N Cookies - "Tinkertoy Tomorrow"
( Click here to buy Milk N Cookies)
Hypnolovewheel - "Get My Act Together"
( Click here to acquire Turn! Turn! Burn! and more!)
Danielson - "Singers Go First"
( Click here to buy Trying Hartz)
Vitamin X (ft. John Brannon) - "Pressure Release"
( Click here to buy Full Scale Assault)
Eddy Current Suppression Ring - "Sunday's Coming"
( Click here to buy Primary Colours)
The Weakends - "Times Is Tight"
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Tommy Jay - "Accept It!"
( Click here to buy Tom's Tall Tales of Trauma)
Now is the time for us to gather together and celebrate those things that we like and think are fun:
- Tom from Buffalo says he doesn't know anything about the theory, playing, or reading of music, but he's still really picky about what he listens to. Comedienne Paul F. Tompkins points out that this is an acceptable blind spot because only a select group of people crack that kind of stuff. TfB says his girlfriend, a vocalist and music theory major, makes him feel stupid for his lack of knowledge. (Perhaps he could enlist Pudge Palfner as a tutor?) PFT suggests that TfB is actually stupid about his relationship because his girlfriend sounds like a controlling, castrating monster. Tom Scharpling is very amused by this analysis. TfB threatens to bench press his 98-pound partner as retaliation for her emotional bullying. TS regrets that TfB made a physical threat, and PFT says he's now compelled to contact the authorities to thwart a domestic dispute. TS envisions TfB pacing around his residence with a closed fist, and PFT compares the dynamic to the verbal gamesmanship in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. TfB says it's kind of like that and admits that he's not that much of an intellectual guy. TS is not surprised to hear this and issues a great ... big ... fat... GOMP to TfB for acting like Stanley Kowalski.
@scharpling Is it done yet? Is it over yet? Oh ... BRUTHA. Let's DIG DEEP and pull this one out. This one's for Santa Claus. Oh, good heavens.
@scharpling 3-pronged attack of mirth/music/mayhem = TBSoWFMU each and every Tuesday night. You count on it, and it is here for you. Me=host per usual.
@scharpling [WFMU.] Heeellllooo, Tom. [How are you?] Weeehhh dungeon dungeon Chucky discipline doo-wop. I hate kids. [What about Christmas?] I don't do ... Christmas muuuhhhh. [Heave Ho!]
@LymonLover @scharpling did a very adequate imitation of me. Actually can't wait for Xmas: day off, exchanging presents with family, eating good food.
@omar4life Sparkling cider?
@LymonLover @omar That's Thanksgiving, you munch. I bring a jar of mayonnaise on Christmas.
@scharpling Your Parole Officer? What'd you get him? Or her. Not trying to be sexist!
@LymonLover I don't have a parole officer. Never have. Why does @scharpling keep asking me this?
@LymonLover I hope Santa brings me a Microsoft Zune (120 gb) this year.
@scharpling WHAT?! The Zuuune. I hope not on my recommendation. Don't want you blaming me when you get stuck with that hunk of garbage. Obama inspired?
@LymonLover Nothing to do with Obama.
@scharpling Good. It was debunked. Obama would rather be seen with that dude from Illinois. Lagoogavich.
@LymonLover Is that his name? Gagoogavich? Bavavavich? Popovich? Whatevuh.
@scharpling I don't trouble myself with that guy. Old-timey thug. Right?
@LymonLover He's slime. He's miserable slime.
@scharpling He is. Nice head of hair, though. Like Sean Hannity hair.
@LymonLover Yeah. You can just rip it off.
@scharpling It's that meathead helmet all those guys have. He looks like Tim Blake Nelson if you dropped like eight pounds of hair on his head.
@LymonLover Yeah. So I can't wait for Thursday. Get up, shower, head over to "the home" around 2-3 p.m. It's right here in Queens - no subway or bus needed.
@scharpling You're not hallucinating this family, right? Cardboard cutouts from movie theater lobbies. Your "family" doesn't consist of Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon, does it?
@LymonLover Oh God no. Although I guess I did say that Four Christmases "looked appetizing" a couple of weeks ago.
@scharpling You don't look around and see a giant Meet Dave head, right? Actual humans who know you and say, "Welcome, Spike"?
@LymonLover That's right.
@scharpling How about a Santa hat to help get in the holiday spirit?
@scharpling Did your phone just go off? I think your phone just rang.
@LymonLover No, it didn't.
@scharpling What happened?
@LymonLover You get it.
@scharpling Heave Ho! Guy can't keep goin' with the song?! We're creating Christmas magic! You get it. We're inspiring people with that. You ba-foon. You like that Mike?
@APAntoine Well, your part was nice.
@scharpling Put you in the spirit a little bit, didn't it? I was finally getting Christmas cheer and that numbskull bailed on it. Oh brother. Is it over yet?
Before putting a topic on the table Tom discusses his dinner last night with ladyfriend Jillian Barberie. He skipped the buffet and Pantera Bread in favor of a fancy place with cloth napkins, metal silverware, and full wait service. However, they ended up sitting next to a guy who looked like the uglier brother of Paulie Walnuts. Tom says the maybe-mobster spent the duration of his meal talking shop with an extremely bored woman. He also noticed that he mentioned an associate named Fernando every 90 seconds. Tom was able to determine that the man had confronted Fernando about some kind of work-related incident, urging him to just tell him the truth about what went down. Fernando apparently denied any involvement. He estimates that the man said the name Fernando so many times (at least 100) that it morphed into a grunt. Tom started to feel bad for Fernando, but he was also mad at him. He says the weird, detail-free conversation suggested that the sub-Walnuts raconteur could have been an organized criminal or a Hardee's manager. Tom wishes he recorded the conversation. He says that if Fernando had been the buzz word in a drinking game, participants would have died from alcohol poisoning.
Tom compares his thrilling new Twitter novel, Fuel Dump, to the Oscar-winning Crunch. He hopes that Hollywood can adapt his work into an award-winning film. Mike informs Tom that the ensemble film about the intersecting lives of people in L.A. is called Crash. Tom takes his word for it and describes Fuel Dump as "Crash on steroids." He upgrades its power to "steroids on steroids" before settling on "steroids from Hell" as the most accurate tagline for what he has in store.
[More to come, have to go burn some Christmas trees.]
- After a brief moment of dead air, the next caller launches into some non-vitriolic caroling with an obscure gem: "Oh, yeeeaaahhh, we're havin' a good time, too. Hey, mon, we're havin' a Reggae Christmas. Merry Christmas and a Reggae New Year to youse." It is, of course, Philly Boy Roy. He asks Tom if he remembers "Reggae Christmas." Tom isn't sure which artist performed the novelty hit. PBR calls Tom a Canareggaedummy for not knowing it was singer-songwriter Bryan Adams. He giggles as Tom apologizes for not identifying the Canadian guy responsible for the holiday reggae tune that MTV rotated in 1984. PBR says he doesn't recall if it was ever released as an actual record. Tom doesn't know, either, so PBR wants him to consult with call screener Pierre, an emerging wit battler and trivia titan. Tom confuses PBR by calling out to someone named "Mike." The mystery man doesn't recall any of the "Reggae Christmas" particulars.
PBR remembers his first viewing like it was yesterday, and Tom greenlights the full backstory of this initial Canareggae exposure. PBR says that he was sitting in a neighbor's row house with Wheels and Buzzy watching the latest videos from early MTV favorites like Scorpions, Culture Club, Autograph, and Cyndi Lauper. He thinks these acts are examples of how it was all just good music back then. Tom agrees that this period was indeed the Golden Era for rock. PBR adds Icehouse, Ozzy Osbourne, and Ultravox to the historic mix. He says that his crew didn't care what it was because everything was good in the video format.
When Bryan Adams's clip for "Reggae Christmas" hit the screen all H-ell would break l-oose because of their love for the song and the activity that typically accompanied it. Tom asks PBR what he, Wheels, and Buzzy did during the airings. PBR instructs Tom to strap himself in prior to revealing that they broke out the smoking implements to celebrate the birth of Jesus and his dad, Jah, by partaking in the Holy Sacrament of ... hash. Tom doesn't seem too thrilled with this form of seasonal worship. PBR says they limited the hash sessions to the days leading up to Christmas. They also raided the neighbor's liquor cabinet to toast Jah with brandy. PBR says he can still see that brandy sniffer in his mind's isle. Tom suggests that brandy is an inappropriate liquid for celebrating Jah and his son. PBR disagrees and repeats that he can envision the bizarre mass in his mind's isle. Tom thinks he's trying to refer to his mind's eye. PBR explains that the mind is an island in the middle of the ocean that's your head. Tom is willing to yield to this definition, but PBR backs off a bit.
He says they never knew the name of their neighbor, who seemed nice when he drove away each morning. As soon as he was out of sight they broke into his cellar to get settled for a day of debauchery. Tom asks PBR if the homeowner ever discovered their crimes. PBR says he never really did, although he likely noticed that all his alco-hol was missing when he returned later in the day. PBR giggles at the memory of these heists. Tom thinks it's a little horrible to break into someone's house, and PBR requests a definition for "break in." Tom says it involves entering the basement of a private residence. PBR suspects that Tom will next accuse them of using bolt cutters to aid their unlawful entry. Tom asks him if they used this tool. PBR confirms that they did. Tom does not believe this is good behavior, but PBR says it felt good to get inside and put some brandy in his stomach. Tom points out that it wasn't his brandy to imbibe. PBR admits to stealing the hash from a different victim prior to the break-in. Tom commends him for at least spreading the thievery around the neighborhood.
PBR argues that he was spreading "good cheer," which is what he tried to do by sending Tom a Christmas card. Tom says he did not receive it. PBR is surprised because he mailed it to him c/o WFUM. He quickly realizes that his call letter transposition caused the delivery delay. PBR is confident that Tom will love the image on the front of the card when it eventually turns up. It's a picture of him in the park with the whole famdam (Rhoda, Roy, Jr., Rhoda, Jr., and little Royda) sitting atop an old-fashioned missile. He heartily giggles at the itinerary they painted on one of the adjacent bombs: "Next Stop: S-hitbridge!" Tom realizes that it's a disrespectful reference to his impending move to Newbridge as the Mayor-elect. PBR loves the sound of this transitional title and wants Tom to repeat it. Tom again identifies him as the Mayor-elect, but PBR wants him to say it with more respect. Tom finally meets his approval with his more forceful second attempt. PBR thinks he and Newbridge are poised to have a glorious 10 years of awesomeness. Tom is less enthused by the prospects of a decade under the Philly influence. While it's possible that the Christmas photo shoot took place prior to 11/3/08, PBR's omission of his newborn son certainly raises questions about his commitment to his fourth child. On Election Night PBR revealed that he was battling Rhoda for naming rights. She wanted to honor her father with Michael, but PBR was lobbying for the sports-themed Philly Phanatic, Jr. or Dr. Julius Erving II.
PBR takes moment to relay a special Christmas message to the people of Newbridge. He says that things are coming along swimmingly with the "pretty painless" transition of power from the previous administration. PBR thanks his changeover team for all their help: Misters Tank, Chastain, Fernando, and Rasmussen. Tom wants to know more about this Fernando. PBR says it's new local sensation Fernando Billups. Tom wonders if this is the same Fernando he heard so much about last night at the restaurant. PBR assumes it is because there can't be that many Fernandos roaming around Newbridge. He named Mr. Billups as his Lieutenant of Physical Fitness to help the chubby Newbridge kids drop some pounds to avoid getting whipped in the stockades. PBR also plans to lead Tom and call screener Winifred to the stocks. Tom asks PBR what transgression would warrant this violent punishment. PBR says he's certain that Tom will do something to sufficiently aggro-vate him.
He then speaks from the bottom of his heart to let everyone know that he will probably never do what Governor Mike Bla-go-je-vich did in Illinoise. In a nutshell, the thick-mopped Blago was arrested on federal charges of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, as well as soliciting bribes in exchange for President-elect Barack Obama's vacated U.S. Senate seat. PBR assures the public that his admino-stration will either be completely free of corruption or relegate it to the smallest place. He cannot rule it out at this time. Tom hopes that PBR will try to avoid it at all costs. PBR says he's inspired by the way Gene Simmons always remained open to a Kiss reunion with the original lineup. When the classic quartet finally put on the makeup and donned the Love Gun-era stage outfits in 1996, the band made millions, just like The Hooters. Tom doesn't recall the reunited Philly rockers ever raking in millions. PBR clarifies that the band likely made thousands, if not hundreds, in revenue since their 2001 relaunch.
PBR knows that everyone is buzzing about the rumors of how things will change when Team Ziegler takes office. He wants everyone to rest their minds at ease because 40% of the rumors are false. Tom requests specific information about some of these rumblings. PBR starts with the issue of the death squads. Tom is understandably taken aback by this initiative and asks about the source of this scary rumor. PBR says it's been gaining traction on various blods. Tom thought that PBR referred to "blobs." PBR asks Tom if he cracks a computer much because it doesn't seem like he does. Tom says he uses a computer and knows about blogs. PBR agrees to disagree about the correct term. Tom lets it go because he's much more concerned about the possibility of death squads than online publishing.
PBR explains that the so-called "death squads" are actually teams of Peace Operatives. Tom wants to know who PBR enlisted for the first wave of POs. PBR says he was lucky to convince a wonderful man to lead this project: Werner Rasmussen. Tom disapproves of the appointment because the trenchcoat-clad mini-Rutger Hauer (with blond hair + black mustache) has been a major player in the Newbridge cocaine trade and runs the Das Sieben Und Der Elf convenience store, the exclusive retailer for Blue. PBR says it was a real coup to get him. Tom is shocked that PBR didn't say "coupe." PBR asks Tom if he ever cracks a French dictionary because it doesn't sound like it. He calls him a "doonche" for making the hard-p sound, and Tom welcomes PBR back to grammatical reality. PBR says he was correctly using the term, which is confirmed in the title of the best-selling book, Confederacy of Doonches. Tom is surprised that PBR has even heard of the cult novel. PBR claims to be an avid reader, so he certainly knows about this flatulent New Orleans romp co-written by John F. Kennedy and actor Peter O'Toole. Tom decides to take his word for this improbable collaboration. PBR says the 35th President and legendary actor never wrote another book together. Tom thinks that is a shame. PBR recommends a trip to the libary for additional research on their lone work, but Tom thinks that literary matters are inconsequential when there are death squads patrolling the town.
PBR excitedly reports that Werner's equally menacing (and identical-looking) brother, Rutager, will help run the POs. Tom inquires about the ultimate objective for an organization controlled by two people who have done nothing but exploit the seedy underbelly of Newbridge for financial gain. PBR says that when things get out of hand (e.g., too many people rowdily congregatin' on the streets), the Germans will sweep into motion to keep the peace just like Mayor Wilson Goode did in 1985 with the radical MOVE organization. Tom reminds PBR that the "peaceful" solution in this case was to drop a bomb from a helicopter onto an occupied row house. The resulting blaze consumed an entire city block and killed 11 people. PBR wants Tom to define "bomb." Tom says it's something that sets everything on fire when it falls on an intended target area. PBR accepts this definition. Tom asks PBR who will decide when a situation is officially out of control. PBR grants Tom one guess, but he answers it himself: "His name ... is ... me."
While Tom knows PBR very well, he remains concerned about some of the rogue figures assigned to high-profile positions. PBR says that he considers Tom to be his bro despite their differences over the past eight years. Tom elicits a strong reaction from PBR when he mentions that he has a "good handle" on him. PBR wants Tom to get away from him because he doesn't go like that. He laughs at his homophobic quip, which he bills as the latest example of his sharp riffage on par with Todd Rundgren's performance on last night's Late Night with David Letterman. Tom says he actually saw this segment. PBR knew that Tom caught it because he also has the TV bug. Tom confirms that he likes his TV. PBR declares his fandom for M*A*S*H, especially the Colonel Klink character. Tom says he's seen enough of the Korean War dramedy to last a lifetime. PBR says he will agree to disagree about one's ability to become satiated with the program.
Tom returns to his original point about having a pretty good sense of how PBR will implement the Peace Operatives. However, he's not sure if PBR will be able to maintain enough authority over Werner and Rutager. PBR says he will call all the shots for the first two months before giving them free reign for the remainder of his term. Tom asks PBR if he's worried about these guys having control of a military force. PBR says the duo exhibited the requisite skills during a recent training session at a Flyers game. He reports that Werner and Rutager totally controlled a large, unruly crowd outside the Wachovia Center by whipping them with belts. PBR says he has not yet issued them firearms, but the belts did have unloaded guns attached at one end. Tom thinks PBR is really playing with fire on this arrangement. PBR dismisses the dangers, but he says it will be hot. Speaking of hot, PBR thinks Tom will be very happy to know that the redecoration of the Mayor's mansion is nearing completion. The interior was repainted using every color of the Philadelphia professional sports teams:
Phillies (Red & White)
Nem Eagles (Green & Silver)
Sixers (Black; alternate away jersey)
Tom assumes that each room would have the colors of one team, but PBR says that every room will have all of nem colors mixed together. Tom predicts that this decision will cause a décor disaster. PBR sees it as a great way to represent Newbridge as a diverse melon pot. Tom thinks it's very exciting that PBR is embracing the town's reputation as a melon pot.
With the color palette in place, PBR says he's now focusing his attention on what floor will house his new rhino. Tom is baffled by this very odd pet choice. PBR says it's a proven factoid that all the great mayors have owned rhinos over the years to help instill confidence in the elector-ate. Tom has never heard this factoid. PBR asks Tom what people feed these creatures. Tom says that he can't comment on their proper diet because he knows as much about rhinos as PBR does: nothing. PBR says he wasn't being replorical with that query. He's not sure what he will do with it, but he assumes that you can ride it since it's called a rhino. PBR realizes that if that were the case, it would be called a rhido. He wonders if he could just grab it by the horns and swing around. (Zeph Marshack once touted slapping tethered rhinos as a great way to toughen up the hands for competitive slapfights.) Tom believes that PBR is biting off way more than he can chew because rhinos are very dangerous animals. PBR says it will be safe after its teeth are removed. Tom wants to know how he will perform this ambitious extraction. PBR assumes that there are dentists in Newbridge, although some of the teeth he's seen there suggest otherwise. Tom doesn't appreciate that PBR is judging people. PBR denies the charge, but promises to issue a flurry of judgments when he arrives in town. Tom is looking forward to a mayor who looks down on everyone. PBR says his reign will be fun regardless of his attitude toward his subjects.
He tries to shift the conversation to Tom's Christmas plans, but Tom wants to back up to the discussion of the mansion. He tells PBR that his residence is just a modest ranch house. PBR is so stunned by this revelation that he can barely get out his "What?" reply. He suspects that Tom is either nuts or joking. PBR hopes there is at least some kind of addition, but Tom says it's pretty much a plain, one-story ranch house. He delivers some more bad news regarding the basement, which may not be more than a crawlspace. PBR is bummed out, but he takes a hit of marijuana to not be bummed anymore. Tom sarcastically suggests that the people of Newbridge are in great hands.
PBS says he will be well rested because he's taking Christmas off to chill out. He told the family that there's too much to do to get ready for the big move, but he really didn't want to buy no presents for nobody in the midst of the bad economy. However, he did reveal that they would all do their business on golden toilets once they get to Newbridge. Tom points out that Newbridge is a moderately sized town with a tight budget. PBR insists that the Zieglers will use gold toilets. Tom hopes that PBR is not planning to use public funds for these kinds of luxury items. PBR says the precious fixtures have already been ordered. He tells Tom to halt any arguments on his fiscal agenda because this one is on youse. PBR erupts into a giggling fit, and Tom resigns himself to Newbridge starting 2009 in the hole because PBR is spending money like a maniac. PBR denies it and accuses Tom of being a bad boy for not paying his 2008 Fun Tax, a requirement for anyone who wants to have fun next year. Tom says he's never heard of this tax. PBR explains that the newly instituted law requires everyone to sign their cars over to him or get whipped. He's excited about having the titles to 50,000 of Newbridge's registered vehicles. Tom concludes that PBR has no concept of his mayubernatorial duties.
PBR takes another monster hit, which leaves him feeling good and talking like Bryce. He asks Tom if he has a problem with his weed intake. Tom says he kind of does, but it's fine if he's doing it in his own home. PBR says he's actually attending a parent-teacher meeting. Tom does have a problem with this venue and a more general problem with PBR becoming his mayor. PBR adds another layer of concern by announcing that he will also serve as the teacher for all the classes in the Newbridge school system. Tom warns him that he's in for a shocker when he realizes the true character of Newbridge. PBR says that Tom will be in for a literal shocker because Werner's whip is equipped with electrodes. He warns Newbridge that he's coming and makes two electrode-whipping noises before hanging up.
MORE TO COME ...