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Monday, May 01, 2006


On Laundry and Geraldo

The laundromat to which I've been hauling my soiled clothing ever since we moved to this apartment is apparently no longer a going concern. I remember talking to the owner a couple of months ago as he did his best to get me to FOLD FASTER, DAMMIT, so that he could close and go home. (I'm very meticulous and like to take the time to put the crease back in my briefs.) He mentioned at the time that he'd only recently taken back management of the business after having someone else in charge of the day-to-day operation of the place for a few years. Now that he was seeing it up close again, he said, he thought the cost of running the place might outweigh the return. And now he seems to have shuttered the doors.

I should point out here that he hasn't used "shutters" in the charming New England-y sense, but rather a big ugly metal garage-door-type mechanism that would crush the skull of a homeless man if that man should happen to be so unlucky as to fall asleep in its path at closing time.

I am, I feel the need to clarify, not mourning the loss of a neighborhood institution or anything along those lines. The place is pretty much a shithole. But it's a shithole that's very close to my apartment, which is important when you're lugging fifty pounds of dog hair-covered slacks for a trip through the spin cycle.

The upshot of this is that I've had to haul our dirty linen and such way the fuck down the other end of the block and around the corner, to a laundry that, while a thousand times cleaner, is also more expensive and has less square yardage on which I can fold clothes. Which pisses me off. When I fold clothes, I needs my space goddammit. I cannot be cramped.

And worse, there's really nowhere in this new place that one can go and read without being bombarded by the television. The good ol' shithole's TV was on all the time, too, but at least you could give up being seated and retreat to the back, where the noise of the forty-year-old drying machines drown out the likes of Maury and Jerry.

Last Thursday, I had the misfortune of being in the new laundry while they had Geraldo's new "news" show, Geraldo at Large on. Sweet fajita-eating Jesus, why the hell do they still let this rectal wart on the ass of American Journalism within a dozen miles of a microphone? Aside from profiles of the suspects in a half-dozen cases of trampily hot missing women from around the globe, Geraldo's big story on Thursday was the twentieth anniversary of an international tragedy. "Chernobyl?" you might guess. Alas, no.

Geraldo was commemorating the two decade mark of his pay-per-view special on Al Capone's vault. Was he abashedly admitting what an over-hyped crock of pay-per-view shit it was? No. Was he flagellating himself for misleading the American public? Uh-uh. Was lamenting how his unspecial special helped hasten the death of credible journalism? Nah. Geraldo was sucking his own dick about the fact that Al Capone's Vault was the highest-rated pay-per-view special in television history. Please, somebody crush my skull with a boulder. Anybody? Anybody?

Now, I realize that Geraldo is an easy target who long ago sank down into the realm of self-parody. But the fact that he's still part of our journalistic landscape and nobody has taken the initiative to load him onto a catapult and fire it into the nearest brick wall just makes me want to weep.

But it's not like Geraldo is alone. Even the Washington press corps has sunk to the point where George W. Bush's ham-handed little skit with an impersonator makes headlines all over the country while the fact that Stephen Colbert rhetorically slapped the president upside the head with his dick was barely mentioned.

I think we've reached the point where we need to just scrap the press we have and go back to town criers. At least they occasionally got drunk and puked in the middle of the sports segment.

Just out of curiosity, why don't you consider buying a washing machine? No room? Too expensive?
Not only did Colbert's genius performance get mostly ignored, but the media outlets that have commented on it have bashed it and said that he was out shined by the "idiot and idioter" sketch.
Probably had something to do with the fact he skewered them as much as he skewered Bush.
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