Bits: Whatever happened to …

Ever wonder what ever happened to Teddy Duchamp, the luckless, one-eared wonder who, together with his three emaciated friends, set the precedent for modern-day bromances when they scoured the landscape for Ray Bower’s mutilated body in “Stand By Me”?

Turns out he became the sort of hipster-approved pop culture-ist who can write an entire essay that, like, compares Britney Spears to KFC’s Double Down.

Originally posted July 9, 2010 at Schadenfreude.

Bits: ‘I was Michael Cera first’

The Supreme Court of New York has ruled in favor of a disheveled and geeky young actor wearing an ironic T under a hoodie, who claims “I was Michael Cera first.”

Jesse Eisenberg, 25, star of the film “Adventureland,” displayed his signature bad posture and said something witty without any inflection when the verdict was read. A handful of pregnant teen-aged girls sporting pony tails and Converse low tops rolled their eyes with delight in the back of the court room.

Eisenberg asked the court to recognize that in the 2005 film “Cursed,” he played a bumbling nerd with touseled tresses who, after being attacked by a werewolf, develops self-confidence, a wrestling prowess, and hair product. When the title curse is lifted, he goes back to being a lanky loser — but gets the girl.

“Then Michael Cera comes along, and is in a few slightly more successful movies playing basically me,” Eisenberg stammered for a small audience on the steps of the courthouse. “Michael Cera, Michael Cera … Everybody loves Michael Cera. Say the name Jesse Eisenberg and people are like, ‘Is he that weird guy in our chemistry class?’”

Eisenberg noted that he had long been a fan of the Smiths — and also some obscure indie bands “Michael Cera has never even heard of” — plays acoustic guitar, and regularly carries a backpack.

Cera did not respond to dozens of  calls made from a hamburger-shaped phone.

Originally posted on August 24, 2009, on Schadenfreude.

Bits: How to kill a Gremlin (As seen in ‘Gremlins’)

After you have exposed your cuddly Mogwai to bright light, doused it in water and fed it leftover fried chicken after midnight, you will find yourself faced with a rapidly-multiplying, rat-faced, morally-broke creature with a high tolerance for alcohol.

Here is how you exterminate the bastards, as seen in the 1984 holiday classic/horror film/instructional manual by Steven Speilberg, “Gremlins.”

  1. With your butcher knife at the ready, creep into the kitchen where you will find the Gremlin with a golden frosting mustache greedily gorging himself on gingerbreadmen. When he crawls face first into the bowl of the electric mixer, stealthily turn on the kitchen appliance. The Gremlin will spin as though he is on a sadistic carnval ride, his tiny legs aflutter, his head and torso will puree, shooting bits of flesh and squirts of greenish blood all over your panneled kitchen cupboards.
  2. This will attract the attention of other Gremlins. They won’t necessarily be angry about the death of a brother, as they seemingly place little value on life. They are angry by nature. Deflect the plates that the Gremlin is UFOing at your head with a common TV tray. Using a stabbing technique popularized by Norman Bates, attack the creature. Three jabs to the Gremlin’s chest cavity should do the trick.
  3. A steady mace-like mist of Pam Cooking Spray will disorient a Gremlin. Should this Gremlin be fortuitously standing in your microwave oven,  slam the door, and set the timer for about as long as you would for Orville Redenbacker’s Smart Pop Butter Mini Bags. It will only take about 3 seconds for the Gremlin to combust.
  4. Your Christmas tree is a known hiding spot for Gremlins. And the tinsel-draped creature will use it as a weapon, tipping the conifer over on top of you. At this point, it is good to have a crime-fighting partner, who can charge the beast with a decorative sword he has yanked from the wall. The common Gremlin can be decapitated with one swing of the sword. Aim for the fences. With a little luck, the Gremlin’s severed head will land near the Yule log.
  5. It is not unusual for Gremlins to turn on their own. A card game could get ugly; A Gremlin could shoot another Gremlin in the face.
  6. Gremlins are notorious party animals. One lively creature is bound to want to swing from the ceiling fan, jubilant with the mix of tap beer, Marlboro Reds, and the opportunity to just let his hair down. Crank up the speed of the fan and send the Gremlin sailing through the front window of Dorry’s Tavern.  Then bolt.
  7. When the Gremlins converge on the local movie theater for the late night showing of “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” adjourn to the boiler room of said theater. Crank on an unspecified valve, emitting a steam of an unspecified gaseous substance. Ignite a few rags, and set them near the homemade bomb, allowing yourself enough time to evacuate the premises. You should be able to get a safe distance from the theater before it explodes, killing hundreds of Gremlins in one shot. This mass-murder will be your most successful extermination.
  8. With a little luck, the one remaing goody-good Mogwai will rev up a Barbie car and come to your rescue.You’ve been shot in the arm with a crossbow and now the leader of the Gremlins has turned a firearm in your direction. The aforementioned Mogwai will be able to open a giant skylight, scorching the last of the Gremlins just seconds before he dove into a fountain, intent on, again, multiplying.

Originally posted January 15, 2010, at Schadenfreude.

Bits: What I learned from ‘Avatar’

More than a cautionary tale about the environment and racism, James Cameron’s “Avatar” is an exciting example of a woman in the thrust of a scientific anomaly: Sigourney Weaver isn’t getting older, she’s just morphing into Eric Stoltz.

Originally posted May 14, 2010 at Schadenfreude.