Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Good Ol' Days

In watching the NFL playoffs, i realized how painful they are when the eagles are out of it and the patriots are unstoppable. I also realized that Dan Dierdorf is incredibly annoying and should go back to his full time job as an English butler in Pittsburgh. What's more, T.O. is a crying baby, Tony Romo can't perform under pressure, and apparently its quite cold in Wisconsin this time of year. But actual football aside, Dierdorf has me thinking: What has come of the incredible late 80s, early 90s sitcom star? If Mr. Belvedere can call NFL games, certainly Tony Miceli can return to second base for the cardinals or at least coach third, no? Cousin Larry where art thou? Colonel Klink, was there ever a funnier nazi? All of this reminiscing got me nostalgic, and when I'm nostalgic, I turn to my ol buddy the world wide web in search of funny pictures/videos to help remind me why staying home from school as a kid was so damn enjoyable...

The Bul Bubak stole a bit of my thunder by presenting his own Top Five, but fuck the bul bubak, i have a top 6.

In no particular order, here are some of my favorite shows of yesteryear...

What's Happenin' /What's Happenin' Now
My father always wondered, sometimes aloud: why do you want to be black, young big firm? In retrospect, I should have simply uttered three words in response: Rog, Rerun and Da-wayne. This show was ahead of its time. Dwayne was a computer programmer (sure...and I'm an astronaut), Rerun was a used care salesman, and my personal hero Rog (pronounced Raj) was a struggling writer. Throw in fat Shirley, and sassy younger sister Dee and you have pure comical genius! But this show was about more than clever one liners, afros and funny glasses. This show asked each and every one of us: "what is happening?" and once that question became out-dated, "what is happening now?" You were happening, Haywood Nelson. In the words of Pedro Cerrano: YOU MAN! YOU!

I always thought MLK is why I wanted to be a baptist, but there's no denying this show played a role in that dream. SHINE ON ME!
A few reasons why this show stands out among the rest:
A) "Amen" took place in philadelphia - manayunk no less - where we all know there are a bounty of hilarious black people. Or maybe we don't, but still. Query: Did these honest members of the First Community Church of Philadelphia put lawn chairs and orange cones in front of their houses to reserve their "parking spots"? I think not. If only life imitated art.
B) Three words: Deacon Ernest Frye. If i were to legally change my name right this minute it would be to Deacon Ernest Frye. As if Sherman Helmsley's genius isn't already apparent, he is actually a proud Philadelphian - just like me - which makes us practically brothers. What's more, in a meeting w/ Reagan and Gorbachev (a power threesome if there ever was one), the good Deacon was quoted as saying "This Cold War guys - it's freezing out the little guy". You couldn't make this shit up. How many people do you know who can double-dutch in a full suit? Not me, not you...not anyone not filled w/ the glory.

You might be noticing a theme here, and it doesn't involve a bevy of white actors. This show sort of merges together w/ some of my other favorites - Gimme a Break mostly - and to be honest, I can't remember which one had Nell Carter and which one had the grandmother posted up in the window. Fact is there's no place like home, and if my home had Jackee and a young Regina King, home would be where I was...all the time.

Small Wonder
Ever been attracted to a robot? Well when I was 8, I was. Her name was Vickie and she lived in a cabinet in her brother's room. Sure, her head could twist around and her legs could be detached, but she had spunk. She fly, she fly.

Diff'rent strokes
There's a reason I don't like riding bikes, much less actually going to the bike shop. I'm pretty sure this episode alone thrust Arnold/Gary Coleman into years of therapy, and Dudley? well who knows what came of Dudley. If you have 8 minutes to set aside, and you are prepared to be uncomfortable, I urge you to click play, and do so now:

This show is perhaps best known for what became of its stars, but I have one outstanding question: if you were so rich, Mr. Drummond, why did Arnold and brother Willis share a bedroom? Separate bedrooms for the whites only, eh? and you call yourself a Canadian just like SAMMY D?!! Shame on you.

The Golden Girls
I threw this one in here b/c it mystifies me how a show about four old women could possibly keep my attention... but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't into Blanche. Oh that rose and her crazy antics. What I didn't understand then, and I don't understand now is how any of those women were young enough to have their mother living w/ them. Anyone w/ some insight? But all jokes aside, Blanche changed the way I look at older women, and for that I am grateful. Plus, Bea Arthur has huge fun bags.

And now this week's predictions. With Wednesday night's victory, FINALLY the sixers won a game that I said they would. In fact, it's the first game they have won since I took to posting. I've already addressed tonight's game at Boston (supra "See you at the Crossroads"), so I begin w/

Saturday against Toronto: The Raptors are giving us problems. It's mostly b/c they are better than us, but perhaps blame should be shouldered by the fans who refuse to show up on game night. I've thought it over many times, and recently decided that if people are unwilling to pay to see our beloved Sixers, the very least we can do is scour our subways for homeless people who would enjoy the heat and entertainment the Wachovia Center provides. It only makes sense. With an energetic crowd, Sixers prevail 104-92.

Monday against Indiana: OB returns to Philly, where no doubt not a soul will remember he once coached. Well I remember. If we were going to hire a cuz, why didn't we hire this man? Regardless, the pacers aren't all that impressive in my eyes, but that doesn't mean we can win. Pacers do exactly that: 99-94.

Wednesday against Detroit. PHILLL-EEE BASK-ET-BALL. I want to kill their PA guy. Matt Cord isn't my favorite, but their guy is intolera-bull. I do love Rasheed, which makes picking this game so damn hard. Rumor has it we are bringing in old Gratz teammate Reds Smith for this one, but the Pistons overcome our stifling inability to hit big shots. Piston 111, Sixers 103.

Friday at New York: Need I remind you what happened last time we marched into the Garden in Madison Square? Well if you don't, David Lee tried to kill our lord and savior, Lou Williams...and we shit beat those fools by thirty. I don't expect an equally as dominant performance, but I do anticipate a victory. Sixers 104, Knicks 97.


  1. Excellent work Firm. It's posts like these that will have Jen Fields back in your arms in no time!

  2. Kudos, Big Firm. You truly are the second-blackest member of your family.

  3. That Diff'rent strokes episode is incredi-bull...Almost as good as the bulimia episode or the drugs episode with yellow jackets and red devils in the school yard. Any of you want some Boston cream pie?...Oh god.

    I would like to add a few shows to the list D-rew started. Though not all are sitcoms, they did make staying home from school on a weekday far more enjoyable:

    1. In the Heat of the Night

    2. My favorite Martian

    3. Punky Brewster (another show-ty)

    4. The Three Stooges

    5. The Price is Right

    6. I Dream of Jeannie (Friedman-Rudolfski); this show was the story of my life in 1st grade.

  4. Though somewhat unrelated to this particular post, I would like to point you all in the right direction, especially if you are interested in Astral Travel:

  5. I wanted to toss Punky Brewster's salad. And still do.

  6. Not as good as "the lion," but this is one of the episodes that I referenced: