Long ago, I used to work for a guy who said he was totally into this show that was a dramatization of Roman times, namely because there was lots of people doing it--sorry, lying together--and lots of people killing--excuse me, slaying--one another. One of my roommates in college had been a classics major, and I brought up the point he mentioned to me about the movie Gladiator: that it was interesting to see all these 6' 8" nordic body builders playing Romans, when it was more likely that they would have been shorter and looked, oh, say, Italian. My boss had looked at me like an errant child, and reminded me of the fact* that this was taking place before the onset of the Anglo-Saxon invasion.

Of Rome.

Do you ever have one of those moments where you feel like the jerk archetype on a safe-for-the-family TV show? Where you're disarmed by ignorance so resolute that it doesn't even think it's participating in an argument? That's when you need to know that you can't win. I tried anyway, and eventually lost my job there. This was the same person, just for the record, who told me that--and you can literally quote him on this literal quote--"The Muslims are trying to kill Christmas." I laughed, because in a different context, coming out of a different mouth, it would have been a joke. He assured me that he was serious. He's the only person I've had that shocked-at-your-stupidity moment with twice, so I suppose the second time was my fault.

If anyone can provide some evidence of the feud from more than 5 years ago, I will send you a dollar.* Perhaps footage of the Battle of Kyoto, where Edward Teach and Hattori Hanzo are said to have fought to the mutual death?

However, if I start seeing evidence of the well-documented combat between the disciples of Shaolin and the brutal Norse, prizes will be in order.

As though you needed someone else to weigh in on the writers' strike. I did want to point out a big flaming hypocrisy in my own life and, I imagine, the lives of others. When I tell people that I don't watch TV, they give me this puzzled look, racking their brains for alternatives. The fact is, I don't, but only on a technicality: It became a daily routine in our household to sit down in front of the computer with dinner and watch the most recent episodes of The Daily Show & Colbert Report. So, no man is an island--even I was affected by the strike. Now that the shows are back on, with varying degrees of confidence, can I go back? The last time I gave them my affections, things ended badly. Day after day I'd come home from work with nothing to watch on my non-TV. I can't go through that harrowing media void again. I guess I'll have to take up these "book" things.

Oh well. Even without broadcast television, I'm sure to be entertained at least 3 times a week .

stub | 01.12.08

* = Not true.