This week’s flashback, “Six degrees of cowbell”, was originally published in March 2009.
If I could have one wish fulfilled at this very moment, it would be to have Christopher Walken as my pen pal.* Christopher Walken scares the crap out of me, so if I ever met him in person I would probably pee my pants a little, but I think we’d make great pen pals. I want him to write to me about opossums, the occasional drunk kid on a Pogo stick, staring contests with cats, and other little gems like that. In fact, I would like Christopher Walken to narrate my life for me. That would be delightfully weird — Burton-esque rather than, say, Lynchian in tone. I don’t want to sound creepy, but I will anyway – I think Christopher Walken would totally “get” me, if you know what I mean. Witness this tweet from last December: “I’m working on a book. Writing one I mean. I’ve already read several.” I die.
Let me side-step on a tangent.
Wikipedia says that Christopher Walken doesn’t have kids. Having Christopher Walken as your dad is kind of inconceivable so, for once, life sorta makes sense. A lot of people say my dad looks like Robin Williams. I disagree; for one thing, he doesn’t have hairy knuckles. I think my dad looks like Robert De Niro. I think that having De Niro as your dad would be really neat.* My boyfriend disagrees, but he shouldn’t be so selfish; I’m pretty sure that reality wouldn’t resemble a third-rate Ben Stiller flick in any case. Actually, I think my dad looks more like the love-child of De Niro and Alec Baldwin.* Now, it would be unbelievably cool if he really was their love-child – I like to imagine that my life would be one amazing, never-ending SNL skit. Narrated by Christopher Walken.
I’m pretty happy with the way I look, except when people say I remind them of Claire Danes. It’s kind of unfair for them to say that, considering that the comparison was last flattering back in ’96. But, despite occasional bouts of uncertainty with regards to my nose, I wouldn’t volunteer myself for a face transplant. I have nice bones, as my boyfriend once said (in a totally non-creepy sort of way), and that counts for a lot. There’s a good chance that I won’t start resembling a Shar-Pei for a long, long time. I might even avoid it altogether. Still, I wouldn’t mind looking like Michelle Pfeiffer. That is one smokin’ lady. Has been for a long time. You can keep your Angelinas and your Scarletts and your Natalie Portmans. Give me Scarface. We’ll compare notes in twenty years.
I can’t think, of the top of my head, whether Michelle Pfeiffer’s ever been in a movie with either Christopher Walken or De Niro. Someone is bound to point out the answer to me, so I won’t bother Googling it. Besides, all three are probably less than six degrees of separation apart, and Kevin Bacon is no doubt in the middle of it somehow. One expects him to be. Personally, I think George Clooney is the new Kevin Bacon.* Come to think of it, he was once in some atrocious-looking movie with Michelle Pfeiffer that I never watched. It’s no good asking me how I know these things, because I just do.
I know a lot of useless things. Many of them involve movies and/or movie actors. This doesn’t come in handy as much as you’d think. I would be far more successful in life than I am if it did. It’s a tragic case of under-utilization; by no means the most tragic of my life, but sad nonetheless. Perhaps I need to frequent pub quiz nights more often.
I once met a red-haired dude in a pub. He wasn’t bad-looking, for a red-haired dude.* I went out with him on a date, and I was sober at the time. The funny thing about that guy was that he was really proud of his follicles. And not because they were still on his head; he was a red-hair zealot, a description which surely comprises the world’s smallest sect. I caught him looking at me a few times with an odd glint in his eye; I could swear that he was calculating the odds of our future children being orange-haired freaks and (figuratively speaking) rubbing his hands with glee at that glorious prospect. I didn’t have the heart to tell him that I would rather mate with an albino than spawn a ginger.* He was kind of a weird guy. Anyway, the point is that people fetishize the strangest things. Like feet, or stuffed animals. I wonder, sometimes, what makes them do that. Most of the time, I don’t want to know. I’m already full of useless information. But I can’t (and don’t) judge. I’m unaccountably fond of many strange things myself. Books. Pickles. Christopher Walken’s Twitter account.
*Or, rather, the person who is Christopher Walken on Twitter – bless his heart, whoever he is.
* Well, except for having to sit through Meet the Parents more than once. Also, Analyze This/That. And The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle. On the other hand, I think I want to be adopted by Captain Shakespeare. I’m pretty sure I’m serious.
* 30 Rock Alec Baldwin, not Working Girl Alec Baldwin. It just struck me that Alec Baldwin was in Beetlejuice too. I feel old. Also, saddened by the career trajectory of Winona Ryder.
* On the subject of comparisons, Michelle Pfeiffer starred in one of my favourite movies of all time alongside the very beautiful (and then-much younger) Uma Thurman. Few women could distract a man from the delectable Ms. Thurman, even when required to do so by a delightfully Rococo plot, but Pfeiffer made it seem not only plausible but inevitable.
* I was going to add that Brad Pitt is the new George Clooney. Then I remembered how, sometimes, I’m not really sure that Brad Pitt and George Clooney are not the same person, Fight Club-style.
* Be honest: how many red-headed dudes do you know who are even remotely attractive? Apart from Eric Stolz, who was admittedly pretty foxy back in the 80s and 90s. Unless you’re one of those people keeping CSI: Miami alive with your inexplicable love of all things Caruso, the answer is none.
* It’s not that I hate gingers. It’s just that I want my kid to be able to start dating before the age of 35.
Ed. Note (August 2012): Ok, this post makes me sound like I have a hate-on for gingers, which is totally not the case. Maybe it has something to do with latent scars inflicted on my psyche by playground meanies. In any event, my son ended up inheriting his dad’s colouring, and as a result is about 10 shades darker than me. Sometimes I marvel that he’s my flesh and blood … and then he yawns or screams (usually the latter), and I recognize my own kind. What can I say … big mouths run in our family.
I also want to clarify that I don’t hate Claire Danes. Honest. But, in the scheme of things, I’d much rather be told I look like Michelle Pfeiffer than Claire Danes. For one thing, my husband agrees with me that Michelle is the sexiest. That’s it; just the sexiest, period. Actually, funnily enough, in the last few years people have stopped telling me I look like Claire Danes, and started telling me I look like Bryce Howard Dallas. Still not Michelle. Dammit!Last but not least, I continued to adore both Christopher Walken and Alec Baldwin. And, of course, Bobby D. I think this was post was written before the whole Alec Baldwin-voicemail incident, but that hasn’t really changed my feelings towards him. First, I am not privy to his relationship with his daughter. Second, “real-life Alec Baldwin” is only loosely related to “my Alec Baldwin”, who is equal parts SNL-Alec Baldwin and Jack Donaghey. Apples and oranges, really.So, my question for you is: who would play you, and who would play your dad, in the summer blockbuster rendition of your life?