or, I’m feeling rather derivative today.
First, to get warmed up for all of this, go read the post and thread over at Max’s blog. It’ll warm your heart if you’re over 40 and give you a valuable cultural lesson if you’re under 40.
Second, go to Raincoaster, get a dish of calamari, and read up on some of the hijinks (a and b) of my favorite Russian carp/megalomaniac prince of Mother Russia.
Okay, now back to Kolchak.
One of the more delicious TV scandals of my youth was the hue and cry – especially in TV Guide – about “The Night Stalker” episode “Chopper.” All of that outcry that week in 1974 or 1975 was over a scene in which a head rolled – literally. You couldn’t really see that it was a head, just a blurry suggestion that someone was decapitated . It was as if the Hays Board came back to life and was ready to decree that married couples couldn’t appear on television in the same bed unless each spouse had a foot on the floor.
Three decades later, the FCC is levying fines for bare ass on the ABC network show ‘NYPD Blue’ – five years after the scene appeared on the air. If you’re particularly interested in the scene, go here (NSFW). It really won’t tell you much that you probably don’t already know about human anatomy.
Now for Prince Vlad.
Long before Putin, and a fair while before the KGB and the Soviet Union, there was an interesting Russian character – Pyotr Stolypin, a prime minister under Tsar Nicholas II. Stolypin, like Putin, had a clear vision of what he wanted Russia to become, and he executed that vision so well that he even had a fashionable piece of neckwear named after him: the Stolypin necktie. His necktie was usually displayed on large wooden racks on platforms with handy trapdoors.
Now, for the purposes of this post, I’m not passing judgement on Stolypin or Putin for their methods, but comparing their respective methods leaves a couple of conclusions. Putin is behaving exactly as one could expect a Russian to behave, and Bush and Cheney would make pisspoor Russians.
Tonight’s moral: if something makes you outraged or indignant, take a deep breath. It’s probably happened plenty of times before you were born and will probably happen several times more after you die.