The Unbearable Banishment: No bullets in the chamber

Friday, October 22, 2010

No bullets in the chamber

I don't have a damn to write about. I think I might have writer's block. Perhaps something sufficiently entertaining/horrifying will occur over the weekend. Until then, here's a beach post from summer that's been languishing in drafts for a few months.

* * *

We visited Seaside Heights on a hot, sunny afternoon. We don't go there often because it's a bit of a drive for us and there are nice beaches much, much closer. But Seaside Heights has a kick ass boardwalk, so I nag Mrs. Wife into going a few times each season.

Here's the giant, Plexiglas Alfred E. Neuman statue that's mounted on the roof of a carnival game. He use to have something in his hand—I think a shovel or an ax—but it's long gone. I grew up on a steady diet of Mad Magazine and when I saw this for the first time I almost wept. Some little animals have thrown mud balls on his face. Bastards. It's like spitting on the Mona Lisa.

This game causes a TONS of controversy every summer. Shoot the Guido. You rent a paintball rifle and shoot at some guy who runs around dressed like a Mafia don. There's a large segment of the Italian/American community who deeply resent the term "Guido." They feel it's a derogatory racial term. Their argument is that this is no different than if the game was called Shoot the Kike or Shoot the Coon. I hate to sound like I don't have a sense of humor but I see their point. I'm Italian and am not bothered by the term Guido, but they make a pretty convincing case, don't you think?

Midway Steak is one of my favorite food kiosks. It's got all the major beach food groups: cheese steaks, Italian sausages, burgers, cheese fries, etc., etc. Urp.

That afternoon, we were lucky enough to stumble across a performance by the fabulous rock-a-billy hellcats, The Razorbacks. Good Christ almighty, they're great musicians. The guitarist/vocalist is astonishing. I honestly have no idea how anyone could NOT like rock-a-billy. They were playing one of the sports bars on the boardwalk. The music poured out onto the beach and I had to wander in for a listen.

Geeze, this post is making me miss summer a little bit. And it's only October! I'm screwed!

Me + 4-Year Old Daughter + New York Times


Blogger Sausage said...

Nice post, I hope the Jersey Shore idiots don't show up at your fav. beach, they would change the game to "Shoot the Guidos" more bullets on the way.
Cheers, Sausage...
PS. When I can'y find anything to write about, I usually tip a few and see whats end up on the notepad in the morning. good luck.

October 22, 2010 at 3:15 PM  
Blogger CiCi said...

Well, it is a relaxing post.

October 22, 2010 at 3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mad Magazine! I plagiarised Spy vs Spy shamelessly. Drew them all over envelopes, magazines.
Thanks, as Bob Hope said, for the memories

October 22, 2010 at 3:50 PM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

SF: The irony is that none of those Jersey Shore jerk-offs are from New Jersey. They give us a bad name.

TB: I love afternoons like that. There aren't enough of them.

MIT: Have you read an issue recently? It is, as you would expect, not the same.

October 22, 2010 at 3:57 PM  
Blogger Eryl said...

I didn't get to the beach once this summer (how shocking is that?), so I need your beach posts to remind me beaches exist and normal people get to visit them.

I've never heard the term 'Guido', is it used to refer to Italians in general or just the ones involved in organised crime?

Mocking Bird... arrived yesterday in the post, it's a fifteenth reprint paperback and still amongst the most beautiful books I own. So far only read the first 40 or so pages but already enamoured. Factotum should arrive any day.

October 22, 2010 at 4:01 PM  
Anonymous daisyfae said...

shooting blanks? bummer...

i miss summer already. and i enjoy autumn a great deal, i just needed a bit more sunshine and beachtime myself.

Alfred E? Other than the fact that he looks a lot like our last president, i adored him as a kid...

October 22, 2010 at 6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, I don't think I want to read today's Mad. And, as Daisy said, he and Dubya are freakliy alike. Someone posted a picture of Dubya as Alred E. a few years ago and caused a bit of a ruckus.Well, a ruckus in places like Crawford, but in my circle it was funny!

October 22, 2010 at 10:30 PM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

Eryl: You've got to visit the beach if you're near one. Sitting by the water is therapeutic. Happy to hear about the Bukowski books! After you read FACTOTUM, rent the movie with Matt Dillon, Lili Taylor and Marissa Tomei. It's pretty good! If you want to continue down the Bukowski path (he, truth be told, not for everyone) pick up Dangling in the Tournefortia and Post Office, which is considered his masterpiece. It's not "A" masterpiece, it's HIS masterpiece.

Daisy: I know I'll embrace autumn soon enough. But this post took me in another direction.

MIT: That picture is actually pretty famous. I've seen it around dozens of times. So creepy and appropriate.

October 22, 2010 at 10:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Years ago, I went to a movie with friends and as the credits rolled we saw an Alfred. E. Newman as producer and Jim and I leapt to attention and cried"Long live Alfred!" and sat down again. Yeah, a bit of a rebel, me.;-)

October 23, 2010 at 2:39 AM  
Blogger Madame DeFarge said...

What a fabulous boardwalk. Not quite like the seaside over here. I love it.

October 23, 2010 at 1:57 PM  
Anonymous nursemyra said...

how the hell do you make a steak out of cheese?

October 23, 2010 at 9:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's a bit scarry for me reminds me of Laughing Sal from Euclid beach. I was scarred to death or her. Dad would make me stand in front of her and look at her; the old kill fear with fear itself attitude. I still have nightmares about her...need I say more?

October 24, 2010 at 10:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't been there in quite awhile - I miss those kinds of boardwalks.

Next year I'm going to Coney Island just so I can say I did before it's gone.

October 25, 2010 at 1:42 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home