Yep. They did it. CNN.com, my web-based filthy habit, decided to inform the world on the front-end of their homepage that the Bush twins are turning 23 years old over the American thanksgiving holidays. What a relief. For a moment I was worried that they were actually going to fill the void left by the conclusion of the Scott Peterson trial with some actual news coverage.
I liken my morbid fascination with what my friend has dubbed "Chicken Noodle News" to the same kind of hypnotic effect that Homer Simpson's jiggling fat had when Gillian Anderson put his half-naked body on the treadmill to lose some weight. You just can't wait to be disgusted even further.
It of course makes sense. North American culture is obsessed with either grossing out or scaring the hell out of itself. It's all part of that innate desire that we have to inflict some kind of pain on ourselves. I have theory about that. Historically and presently, people on this end of the planet haven't had to put up with half of the crap that the rest of the world has had to endure. We're essentially talking about over 300 million people with a rough case of what the experts call "survivor guilt". Or should I say "cross-bearing envy"? Seriously, kids, who doesn't like to feel accomplished for toughing out a day at school or the office while sick with a case of the sniffles? Our lives in general have such little challenge or controversy that we feel compelled to inject chaos into our lives every chance we get. People likely cheat on spouses because they're bored, most shoplifters don't really need what they steal, and kids butt to the front of the line with the same sprirt that we kick around ant hills for fun. Don't tell me that you've never tried it... it's amazing how those little chuckers rebuild those things twice as big....
But I digress. The bottom line is that if we were lemmings, we would be negotiating a group rate to pitch ourselves off of the cliff every spring.
It is in the spirit of that kind of self-infliction that I entered into a fools bet last week with Ginny. I was certain that a guest star on CSI was none other than the same guy who played Lietenant Tom Paris on Star Trek Voyager. Yes, it was a geek's bet. Now, it ended up that it was played by someone who could have easily been this guy's twin. Nevertheless, I am now contracted to Ginny to be her slave for a day, as per the condition of our bet. Now, I am normally good at trivia and matters of general knowledge, but have a bad history when it comes to identifying TV stars for some strange reason. (Honestly, who would have thought the guy who plays the doctor on Everwood was Treat Williams, and not Billy Ray Cyrus? Who?) So with this knowledge in hand, why in god's name would I enter a fool's bet like that?
The answer? I'm clearly a sucker for punishment. A very willing sucker for punishment. After all, it gave me something to write about.