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Published on November 16th, 2013 | by Richard Black


TV at Two AM, An Escape to Arkansas, a Three Speed Massager, and My Epitaph

I’ve already ranted a bit about the quality television programming. In all likelihood, I will continue to do so and it turns out that the time for that is now.

A few nights ago, or, more correctly a few mornings ago I was perusing the interactive guide on TV. I don’t get much free time these days and I find that the early hours of the morning are one of the few opportunities I have to indulge my interest in some really deplorably television

If it’s got aliens or zombies on the screen then I’m in. The same goes for all of the apocalyptic shows that run on the fifteen or so Discovery channels after any sensible person has gone to bed. Suffice it to say that if there’s some measure of alarmist rhetoric on the tube and I’m up I’ll watch. Peak oil, a planet killer asteroid or a flesh eating colon virus, really anything will keep me watching psuedo scientific TV way past my bedtime.

I blame my father for this condition and not just because my therapist said that I should. The man, my father not my therapist, can’t take his eyes off the magic box whenever it’s on and on the rare occasion someone’s foolish enough to give him control of the remote he will try to keep tabs on four or five shows at once. It’s almost like watching a fantasy/sci fi piece of schizophrenia in action.

One minute Ron Perlman is delving to the core of some zombie riddled planet and the next there’s Patrick Stewart directing Number Two in the event one of them has to leave the bridge. Local news is always interspersed in between the two and there’s usually a good piece on the volcanoes and earthquakes for good measure.

By the end of the night, if I’ve had too much to drink, I go to bed somewhat convinced that the Yellowstone caldera exploded, revealed a sacred artifact through a wormhole that turned people into the undead and that the weather for the weekend will be unseasonably warm for this time of year.

My father wasn’t with me a few nights ago so I’ve got no one to blame but myself. As I was flipping between shows about doomsday preppers living in missile silos and the next killer plague I found an entire channel called Escape to Arkansas.

At first I thought it was a movie with Kurt Russell and that someone had screwed up a preposition.

I was wrong. I often am. It turns out that there is an entire channel on my television devoted to shepherding tourists to Arkansas. Now I’m sure there are many fine places to visit in the Natural State. I’ve just never seen them.

I hear the Ozarks in Arkansas are quite lovely but my entire experience in Arkansas involves a stretch of road, I-55, I take every year or so on the way to Louisiana. I haven’t done any illicit drugs in quite some time but driving down that barren stretch of road to Memphis is about as close to a rotgut Quaalude as I’ll ever get.

From what I’ve seen eastern Arkansas is a big flat piece of suicide waiting to happen.

In order to avoid offending anyone else from Arkansas I switched channels and found myself watching an infomercial for a Trojan brand three speed vibrator. It was all very tasteful from what I can recollect. Sadly there wasn’t a demonstration. The entire ad consisted of a an attractive couple talking about the benefits they reaped from a vibrating three speed dildo and that it could be delivered to my doorstep in a plain brown box.

Needless to say I ordered three. Christmas is, after all, just around the corner.

As I went to bed shortly thereafter I fell asleep and had a dream.  The Romulans violated Federation space and steered a PK comet into the earth. The ensuing tsunami wiped out most of the eastern seaboard but I was saved from oblivion by Henry Fonda as he plucked me from the waves and settled me on his giant, three speed vibrating surfboard.

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