“You know Stan Taylor?” – Homer Simpson
“Know me? Ned Flanders saved me. I used to party all night and sleep with lingerie models until Ned and his Bible group showed me that I could have more.” – Stan “The Boy” Taylor
“Professional athletes, always wanting more.” – Homer Simpson
It’s silly season and so people tend to be away from their keyboards more than usual, which means a shorter than average Reading Digest. (In case you are bored or stuck at work or something, I have attempted to compensate through aggressive block quoting.) We do have two Tebow-Flanders links this week though, in addition to lots of crappy merchandise (seasonally appropriate!), the ugly reality behind that merchandise, some excellent usage, and a forward for the L.A. Kings who agrees with us.
[Programming Note: With Annual Gift Man descending from the moon on Saturday night things are likely to be a little quiet around here. Quotes of the Day will go up as normal, of course, but there might be just one or two other posts next week, depending on when Netflix delivers the first disc of . . . ugh . . . Season 14. There probably will be a Reading Digest next week, but no promises. This time of year has a way of cruelly mocking well intentioned plans.]
“Um…Dasher…Dancer…Prancer…Nixon…Comet…Cupid…Donna Dixon?” – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week is this piece of well deserved love for “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire”. That episode can never be loved enough.
D’oh! Stunned couple unearth 800-year-old stone head in their garden… and it looks like HOMER SIMPSON – The 800 year figure is total speculation, but apparently someone at a museum did think it was old. And it does look like Homer.
Review: Greetings from the Simpsons! – That postcard blog remains on a Simpsons roll. This week they’re reviewing two different books of Simpsons postcards. Check out Selma’s “Rocket Bra”.
7 Similarities Between Tim Tebow and Ned Flanders – I like #6 and #7:
6. Both are thankful for the little things, like rainbows. And Marion Barber.
7. Both have a non-believer they just cannot convert.
Watch: Brad Bird talks about directing Tom Cruise in IMAX for M:I – Ghost Protocol – If we get one good thing out of a completely unnecessary fourth Mission Impossible movie, it will be to let Brad Bird do whatever he wants next:
As long as I’ve been in LA, I’ve been enjoying great conversations with Brad Bird.
When I worked at Dave’s Video in the early ’90s, Bird was one of our regular customers. At that point, he was working on "The Simpsons," and he was already known by some film geeks for his incredible "Family Dog" episode of "Amazing Stories." At that point, I remember long conversations about pulp classics, spy movies, his dream of making either "The Spirit" or a SF animated film called "Ray Gunn," and much more. He was one of those customers of ours who really lived and breathed movies, who seemed to be interested in every genre and in every type of filmmaking.
There’s also some interesting backstory about The Iron Giant.
“One For The Book”/“The Spy Who Came In For A Cold One” – Speaking of showbiz lore, here’s a little Sideshow Bob tidbit for you:
(There is a punchline: According to multiple sources, Kelsey Grammer, who had worked with Rabb in the theater, would later claim to have used him as the model for Sideshow Bob, The Simpsons’ affected, two-bit carny geek with Shakespearean aspirations.)
25 Of The Craziest Simpsons Guest Stars – This is a decent if (somewhat page-whorish) list that stops right as it gets into the twilight of the show.
Holiday Toy Guide | The Indypendent – I have no idea how much credence to give this, Jebus knows citing National Review Online isn’t encouraging, but here it is:
Homer Simpson Slippers
China, the biggest exporter of consumer goods on the planet, is also home to the largest penal colony in the world — a top-secret network of more than 1,000 forced-labor camps known as laogai. Charles Lee, one of five million prison slaves, was imprisoned from 2003-2006, and says that he was forced to make Homer Simpson slippers. When asked by a reporter from National Review Online what he thought of people who bought the slippers, he replied, “Oh, they just want the cheapest product. But I feel that, if they knew about my situation, it would bother them.” D’oh!
Banksy, a nation turns its lonely eyes to you.
Burger King Marge Simpson 12in Doll 1990 – The Krusty Brand Seal of Approval strikes again:
Yes, her feet are bigger than her shoulders, but I’m sure it passed a rigorous quality screening before it got sent to Burger King.
Homer Simpson animated clock $16.99 & free shipping, hurry – More crappy merchandise:
Product Features: •Beer or doughnut? Homer can’t decide
•Arms move up and down
•Eyes move back and forth from doughnut to beer
•Requires 2 AA batteries (not included)
•Tells the time
What You Get: Homer Simpson Animated Clock
“Tells the time”, well that’s a relief.
Corporate America: No complaints considered – It’s Season 11, but it’s still excellent usage:
So in the words of “The Simpsons’” Krusty the Klown, “”Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Kwazy Kwanzaa, a tip-top Tet, and a solemn, dignified Ramadan.” And speaking of complaints, I just know I’ll be hearing about this.
Not from me, he got the quote dead on.
Sideshow Bob by ~Raptorhunter123 on deviantART – Fan drawing of Sideshow Bob with hair that’s been flattened a bit. Perhaps he was sleeping?
Fictional Holiday Specials That I Wish Were Real – More of Krusty’s Non-Denominational Holiday Fun Fest would’ve been a real improvement for that episode. Also, KISS Saves Santa is a fantastic idea.
Thhhhhheeeee Skaaaarrryyyyyyyssss – A few photos of really well done Marge graffiti in Melbourne, Australia.
Tim Tebow…In 10 Words – The rare twofer reference from our friend Galileo, with both the tagline and the tooltip being Simpsons related.
New Deck: International Icon Tarot (with Happy Squirrel card) – There’s a real tarot card deck with a Happy Squirrel card:
Some extra love is of course reserved for the Happy Squirrel card (about which you can read everything you ever wanted to know here and here), which was included as a reference to Matt Groening’s The Simpsons (you can see a storyboard of the episode here). I love squirrels, and I love Lisa Simpson, and I love having a serious tarot deck that references The Simpsons.
Sadly those links aren’t working, but that’s still pretty cool of whoever it is decides what goes into tarot decks.
25 Days of Ultra-Christmas: The Simpsons – “Holidays of Future Passed” – This guy’s much more positive on that episode than I was, but he’s coming from the right place:
The Simpsons, as much as I think it’s the greatest TV comedy of all time, hasn’t been worth watching on a week-to-week basis in at least a decade. Last year’s Christmas episode, which I tuned in for solely because of the Christmas blogging, was pretty dour, and exactly the kind of lame, unfunny stuff I expected from the show.
Alvin & The Chipmunks 3: Chipwrecked…In 10 Words – The chipmunks were part of the “crappy computer animated movie” invasion of the Aughts.
There’s a Simpsons fan in Kings’ locker room – And finally, I get to end with someone who agrees with us, and who just became my new favorite NHL player:
Growing up in the small Mennonite community of Winkler, Manitoba, roughly 15 miles north of the border with North Dakota, Los Angeles Kings forward Dustin Penner found ways to remain entertained outside of hockey during the long winter months.
He watched "The Simpsons." Three or four times a day.
"I first started watching with my mom," Penner said. "That was the first kind of PG-cartoon I could watch coming from a really Christian town."
He also was known over the summer for using a relevant Simpsons quote when asked by a reporter whether fans’ criticism of his play had gotten to him.
"The one thing I can say — and I don’t know if you watch ‘The Simpsons,’ the episode with Darryl Strawberry, when they start (chanting) ‘Darryl, Darryl,’ and there’s a tear in his eye — I used to laugh at that, and now I don’t," Penner told LA Kings Insider in July.
Ha. But wait, it gets better:
Perhaps Penner will need to take Homer’s advice from the episode "Whacking Day" as a message to get the team’s offensive pulse beating again.
"You just put away that rage and put it into a little ball and unleash it at the appropriate time," Penner paraphrased from memory. "Like the day daddy hit the referee with the whiskey bottle. Remember that, when daddy hit the referee?"
But is quoting "The Simpsons" in an NHL locker room the easiest way to get through to your teammates?
"It depends on your audience. A lot of these guys I think aren’t as big of a Simpsons fan as I am," Penner said. "I remember even a couple of years back with a buddy Zenon Konopka, who plays for the Ottawa Senators now — we would go nonstop all day. Maybe I’ve gotten away from it a bit, but it’s always in the back of my mind."
Now I have two new favorite NHL players. Oh, and here’s the part where he agrees with us:
"Whenever they’re on, I’ll watch them," Penner said. "I’m a purist. The older the episode, the more I’ll enjoy them."
* * *
Dustin Penner’s favorite Simpsons lines
• Marge: The plant called and said that if you don’t come in tomorrow, don’t bother coming in Monday.
Homer: Woo hoo! Four-day weekend!
• Homer: Default? Woo hoo! The two sweetest words in the English language! De-fault! De-fault! De-fault!
• Homer: Kids, you tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is: Never try.
Professional athletes, never trying.