Dancing Chicken, Sleepy Beef

Barbarella: Plastics, Benjamin. Plastics.Apparently it was bad evil and wrong to love the dancing chicken in the old glory days of Chinatown Fair. Who knew? Next they’ll tell me it was wrong to want Jane Fonda to ditch the rest of her plastics and furs in Barbarella. Hmph.

For those of you watching at home, this has been a rather obvious ploy to run a picture of Jane Fonda in Barbarella. In plastic. See? It worked.

In any case, the chickens get their revenge, as chickens will, at Burger King’s Subservient Chicken site. Go and type in some commands; it’s pretty hilarious. The sex commands have all been muted – you can try though – but it’ll dance for you, flap a bit, turn around, and “make a chicken sandwich” is good for a laugh. It’ll try real hard to lay an egg if you ask nicely. Be sure to say thank you when you’re done.

Sleepy LaBeef burled through his Human Jukebox country’s-greatest-hits show last night at Rodeo Bar. He’s looking robust – you don’t get a name like LaBeef lightly – and happily rugged after his cardiac bypass last year. The hits come rolling out at a medley pace that delights and exhausts, and his huge voice fills the room easily. It’s almost a little too effortless, and I find myself wondering if Johnny Cash, say, would have meant so much to so many if he hadn’t had to work his sometimes atonal way through his music in audibly hard labor. Hearing Sleepy do Cash standards is downright strange: the Man in Black, brought to you by the Big Fella in Black. All of the ease of it, and none of the depth.

When Sleepy steps out and the band and guests take over, the set flags hard. I assume this has more to do with medical realities than bad showmanship, and that’s all you can really say about that. The room is too packed to belly down for some ribs – phooey – so we set to on a meal of free Rodeo peanuts. Urbanized trailer-park faux-redneck hair abounds, and immaculate never-seen-the-sun cowboy hats are present.

Speaking of immaculate: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is even better than I thought it might be, and I thought it might be pret-ty good. It has a profound depth of tender vision and is just about flawless in execution, even for those of us who are mostly annoyed by Jim Carrey (a fine actor when he quits twitching – but when does he ever quit twitching?).

Now, I cry in movies, and I like it. Catharsis, cleansing, the taste of a fleeting feeling, whatever it is: give me Buzz Lightyear getting all honorable in Toy Story or summat, and I’m a damp sap in the dark, happily brimming over. But this movie had all of us in tears, in a sweet way. Toward the end, as Carrey and Kate Winslet run their doomed and desperate scramble through crumbling halls of memory, a woman toward the back keened softly and then sobbed out loud. I can’t remember when I last heard that. Potent stuff, and powerfully put.

About Linus

The man behind the curtain. But couldn't we get a nicer curtain?
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