Go Ask Daddy About Inflections, Infractions, and the Voice of Garfield


photo credit: (vhmh) via photopin cc
photo credit: (vhmh) via photopin cc

I’m at that golden age of 42.

It doesn’t feel magic. It doesn’t suck, either. Pretty much, I can handle most of what I could at 32. Only I feel it more at the end of the day. But it’s not what I expected. And I have only two months to figure out the secrets of the galaxy.

Ever read A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy? In it, Douglas Adams says 42 was the answer to to the ultimate question of life, the universe, and everything.

He later said 42 was a joke. I thought I could still find the answer, at age 42. I have just less than two months left to figure it out. All I know now is that I can see better with my new glasses.

Words are flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup of late, if I could borrow from John Lennon.

A recent post from Kim of Co-Pilot Mom made me go all Aristotle on it.

Maybe for me, it’s the writing. It’s the runner’s high for writers, to get the fingers moving. When I don’t have it, I bog down. It’s like keeping it in is toxic. Letting it out is therapeutic. It meets a need. But it doesn’t feel like an indulgence.

It feels like a necessity.

Indulgences … with anything at our age, are best taken slowly. It’s better that way, anyway. I’d rather love a single slice of pizza right than chomp through half a pie.

It’s 10:58, Legion of Doom. Let’s get to the questions before midnight snack time.

1.     What is that little line between two notes?

slurPerhaps this is the answer Adams couldn’t find.

That little curve between notes is a slur. I answer this at the risk of the hit on Google for using that word. In music – if not 2014 common lexicon – it means you should play or sing the notes without separation.

It’s like in “Drops of Jupiter” by Train, the “hey, hey, hey” part. That’s slurred, sung without separation. Conversely, the “blow oh oh oh oh oh oh oh” parts of Kesha’s “Blow” definitely have separation.

When I’m 52, I’ll slur most of my notes anyway.

2.     Do you think our neighborhood was on the news?

photo credit: * RICCIO via photopin cc
photo credit: * RICCIO via photopin cc

I wish I’d checked, but if I had to bet … I’d say no.

I don’t always fear for our safety, but there were those gunshots in the woods by our house that one night.

And there was a murder less than a mile away. Oh, and a police chase that involved a helicopter that ended four houses down and across the street.

When things happen in East Charlotte, they don’t always make the local broadcast. I have no statistics to back it, but I think if that helicopter action happened in South Charlotte, it’ll go big-time at 11.

3.     Are penalty flags like yellow cards?

photo credit: Ed Yourdon via photopin cc
photo credit: Ed Yourdon via photopin cc

They are, in much the same way cinnamon buns are like cinnamon rolls.

That’s not true. Officials toss a penalty flag in football to signify a rules infraction. Most of those are not cause for expulsion from the game. Facemask, holding, illegal use of the hands and such result in penalty yards against the offending team.

Penalty flags don’t accumulate, unless you’re in high school. You’ll get tossed after your second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

photo credit: Kate_Lokteva via photopin cc
photo credit: Kate_Lokteva via photopin cc

Yellow cards in soccer mean a reprimand for a player after an infraction. Unlike in American football, a yellow flag is universal. You’ve done something wrong, and if you do something wrong again, you get tossed out.

This system went into use 44 years ago at the FIFA World Cup in Mexico.

Could 44 be the golden age I should be waiting for the secrets of the galaxy?

4.     What are bounty hunters?

photo credit: lamont_cranston via photopin cc
photo credit: lamont_cranston via photopin cc

It’s someone who captures or kills criminals for pay. It’s also someone who swipes talent from one company for another.

Both these definitions were disappointments to me when I was a kid and thought bounty hunters were just Boba Fett and friends.

That was my first exposure to bounty hunting. They were my favorite Star Wars figures. I didn’t want to be Luke Skywalker as a kid – I wanted to be Bossk or Ree Yees. I used to want to hang out in a restaurant in the Greeley Mall when I was a tween called the Cantina and I thought I was on Tatooine.

And let’s not forget IG-88, the only droid bounty hunter. He hacked into the Death Star and took it over as his own body, just to show Darth Vader he could. Now, that’s pretty bad-ass, even for a droid. (Is my nerd sticking out?)

5.     Is that who does the voice of Garfield?

photo credit: JD Hancock via photopin cc
photo credit: JD Hancock via photopin cc

Who, IG-88?

No, kid. That’s Bill Murray.

And the movie of choice is “What about Bob?”

Bill Murray plays Bob Wiley, which IMDb describes as a “manipulative, obsessively compulsive narcissist.” He does so like a natural.

Bill Murray has never played a bounty hunter, but he’s had some stellar roles. His career took off after a stint on Saturday Night Live and included parts in Ghostbusters and Garfield. My favorite portrayal is as another Bob, Bob Harris, in Lost in Translation.

Bill Murray lives in Charleston, S.C. How cool would it be to run into him on Market Street next time we’re down there?

I bet that wouldn’t make the news, either.

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55 thoughts on “Go Ask Daddy About Inflections, Infractions, and the Voice of Garfield”

  1. I’d forgotten all about “What About Bob?” I also didn’t realize he lived in SC.

    New glasses are a good thing. I am waiting for mine to come in, any day now.

    1. The day Leo died, the kids wanted to watch something funny to lighten their hearts, and “What About Bob?” was the choice. Mission accomplished, at least for a while.

      Bill Murray owns part of the baseball team in Charleston, and really, what a town. I’d live there too if i was Bill Murray.

      New glasses are a bit of a shock. I was in awe of what I could finally see again. And I was just in Walmart.

      1. You don’t know what you’re missing until you get new glasses. Then you spend a week deep cleaning everything in sight.

  2. What About Bob might be my favorite movie. 42 is a fine age, and not just because I’m a little over a year away from it. It strikes me that the 42 year olds I’ve known kind of hit their stride in confidence, and not that brash, irritating kind from youth. Although 42 is still pretty young. It seems the best if both worlds. Maybe Adams was really onto something.

    1. It’s the kind of movie that, back in the VHS days, you wouldn’t feel bad about buying, because you can watch it over and over.

      I think maybe 42 is that spot when the elevators pass, when you have enough exuberance of youth left to exercise the wisdom you’ve accumulated.

      I sure hope that’s the case. You put it quite eloquently.

      Maybe Adams is lying about his lie.

  3. I heard Police was looking for a guy wearing a Rockies hat, but that information may be unreliable. I got told I’m hearing things.
    When I hear Bill Murray, I think Groundhog Day, and when I think Groundhog Day, I hear “I got you Babe”. I can’t imagine what it must be like to go through the same things every single day.That’d better be an epic day!

    1. I get nervous every time the news reports call for a suspect “of Hispanic descent, 5-6 to 5-8, middle aged, driving a beat up car.” Holy hell, that’s 76% of us here.

      If I had to wake up to the same song every day, I’d want it to be something other than Sonny and Cher. Having to relive a day with Andie McDowell isn’t such a punishment.

  4. What a better way to start my Friday morning off then with a John Lennon and Across the Universe mention, as well as Bill Murray in What About Bob? Seriously, I got a feeling it is going to be a great day now 🙂

  5. i am still, and always will be, a cougar to you, unless you somehow time travel and catch up. but i’m okay with that. love the john lennon and bill murrary references.

    1. my luck, the only race i’d ever excel in would be the one to age quicker. glad you’re ok if i stay (just a little) behind you. i need john lennon’s serenity and bill murray’s sense of humor today.

  6. My definition of “bounty hunter” always has, and always will be, Boba Fett & Co. Dictionary definitions — pfft. Who needs ’em?

  7. Wow – I learned all kinds of things about Bob Murray today – nice!!!
    And, so far all the 40 something ages have been pretty good – I just started 45 but have high hopes!!!

  8. That’s my favorite Bill Murray role too. I can’t even speak about it sometimes. For some reason I left it off a recent list about my favorite movies. Which makes no sense.
    I also love Groundhog Day but I can’t watch it very often.
    When I do, it’s with a cinnamon bun. Or is it a roll?

    1. It was something, wasn’t it? And it sticks with you the hours after you see it and then days and months and years later. It’s a favorite in a different way than, say, “Field of Dreams” is. So I could see how it would get left of a list.

      Can you imagine watching Groundhog Day … everyday?

      The best way to solve the bun/roll debate is to have one of each and take notes.

  9. Umm…yeah, your nerd may be showing. Come on – a Douglas Adams reference and detailed knowledge of Star Wars bounty hunters? Yeah.
    Somehow I did not know that Bill Murray was Garfield. Clearly, the rock I lived under during that decade was huge.

    1. It’s really hard to cover up my nerd, Probably there’s a Google algorithm that rewards (or penalizes) a site with Douglas Adams and IG-88 in the same post.

      He’s Garfield in the movie, but probably not the Embassy Suites commercials. Remember those? Official home of the Fat Cat. They didn’t say it that way, but still.

      If it’s obscure knowledge from a decade in the dark, you’ve come to the right place. These girls’ questions keep my brain elastic.

  10. Ahh, to be 42 again actually to be any age other than mine. I want to be 30 dammit! So you fit the profile mate? A bit sad, I hope your car isn’t a banger that will get you pulled over all the time. A bounty hunter would look good on one’s resume I think. It’s a job for old blokes I reckon. We have patience, cunning, a few moves and can see okay if we wear our glasses. Some days I watch TV and blog on the laptop. I was watching a movie and kept asking Lorelle what was happening as I couldn’t make it out. Silly me, I still had my reading glasses on. Hmm, that could be unwise as a bounty hunter.

    1. What’s wrong with your age, mate? Thirty is tough, because society tells you that’s when you’re getting old, but those of us on the other side of it know you were still a pup then.

      Used to be my car wasn’t was attracted the police – maybe it was pigment.

      Yeah, a bounty hunter in reading glasses might get the wrong bloke. But, he might get the right one. And I admire your ability to blog and watch a movie. I can scarcely watch footy on the TV while eating chicken wings.

      1. There’s nothing wrong with my age Mate, it’s just what it does to me after a day doing yard work. Especially when I sit down and try to stand up. ouch! Kids tell you that you’re old at thirty, I was bloody magnificent at that age.
        Pigmentation is sadly the reason why some police do pull people up.
        I guess after seeing that US Bounty hunter show on TV, I realise that I need to be on steroids, yell a lot and vastly increase my tattoo count. Oh and wear a lot of leather.
        Yes, amazingly enough as a man I can multi task. it’s wondrous I know.

  11. Hello, fellow 42 year old! It is not so bad, I must say. Actually, the past 15 years or so have seemed rather the same. Maybe that’s why part of me still wants to say 26 when someone asks me how old I am. I appreciate all the geeky references and though I didn’t want to be a bounty hunter, I *did* think it would be rather cool to be a taking names, star traveling princess. (And thanks so much for the shout out!)

    1. It’s a lot of pressure to be the pinnacle of the universe, isn’t it? Honestly, you’re right – big deals are made about 30 and 40, but really, my hairstyle hasn’t even changed much.

      Thanks for inspiring this, Kim. Glad also my geeky tendencies are appreciated at some point. We know who the real cool kids are.

      I thought you *were* a name-taking, star-traveling princess.

  12. What?!? I lived in Chas for four years and I didn’t know he lived there, too. What if I saw him and didn’t realize it?!? I feel like I missed an opportunity!

    1. Apparently, you and I don’t go to the right places in Charleston to rub elbows with the voice of Garfield. Maybe he’s not in Sticky Fingers when my kids are there running amok. He’s missing out.

      Next time you’re in town … keep your eyes peeled.

  13. *sigh* Douglas Adams. My hero. I’ve put him up on a shelf (well, many of him) alongside my Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman and Monty Python shrines. They are a happy lot up there–and I’m betting each one of them would tell you that hitting 42 was hitting mid-stride. So much left to come.
    What About Bob could not get any better when displaying the charms of Bill Murray. What a film. Sadly, Hitchhiker’s did not measure up for me. I shall cling to the book always.

    1. Adams just gives us so much to think about. Works for me. I feel like I hit 42 with momentum, and have even a bit more as I head for 43. Definitely not on a downward spiral, yet.

      Bob seemed like a character Bill Murray didn’t have to work too hard to portray. It seems like they gave him a lot of freedom.

  14. Three weeks ago, at age 43, I just got my first… bifocals. They call them graduals or blends or smears or something. I forget what. And I avoided them. But now that I have them, I sound like Bill Murray. I can see near and far and in-between and I just want to holler, “Hmmm, hmmm, hmmm.”
    This post was so all over the place and so exactly where my brain is most days. I snickered, and nodded, and scratched my head. Perfect!

    1. I’ve heard the sight goes after 40. We kept it a little longer, didn’t we? Smears sounds harsh. I think they call mine progressive, which is odd for a libertarian.

      All over the place … that’s how we cook it up around here. Lots of head-scratching is common.

  15. I didn’t know Bill Murray was Garfield’s voice. I used to love drawing Garfield all over my book covers (remember they used to be paper bags) and in the margins of my notebooks. He was the only thing I could draw well, so I did it over and over. I’m 42 also, but not for long. But I still feel 24 in my head.

    1. Just in the movie. I went to a journalism convention in college that Jim Davis spoke for … he gave away a sketch of Garfield. I didn’t get it.

      I feel like 24, too, unless I’m getting up or jumping or waking up early.

  16. I feel bad when I say one of my favorite scenes in Star Wars is when Han is blind and says Boba Fett, where’s Boba Fett right before he launches him into the mouth of Sarlacc. It ranks right up there with Lando tells the blind Han to aim a little higher.

    And at 43 I can tell you that you will survive 42 especially if you keep thinking you are 24 without all the all-night partying

    1. That whole skiff battle is classic. Boba Fett’s last cry on his way down wasn’t the sound of one of the galaxy’s most fearsome bounty hunters.

      All night partying now means I stay up until 2:30 to finish a post for the next day. Talk about living on the edge! I’ll catch up with you at 43 in less than two months, Kerri!

  17. I’m sitting here reading all of your Star Wars references and of course there is the whole storm trooper thing. I think it’s time I told you something.

    Eli, I have never seen a Star Wars movie. Not one. I have every one of them in the house. My son is a fan, but I’ve never watched them.

    I’ll wait to see if we’re still friends……

    1. That was my nerd showing. And the stormtroopers have taken on a life of their own on the site, haven’t they?

      Here’s the thing, Sandy Ramsey: It doesn’t matter if you don’t know Star Wars. It doesn’t matter if you happened to hate Star Wars. So many people I adore are not like me. They’re gay, or democrat, or vegan, or red wings fans.

      They’re android users, cheese-haters, Muslims and foreigners. They’re women and young people. It doesn’t matter.

      They’re all here. That’s what matters.

  18. I’m 56 this Sunday – now that’s a golden age (or perhaps I should say silver age, if the color of my hair is anything to go by.

    Credit where credit is due, you’re a mine of information.

    1. Happy early birthday. Looking forward to reading what a 56-year-old thinks about. I wonder if it’s much the same things I do.

      I’ve been called a mine, all right – a landmine.

  19. “I’m sailing!!! I’m sailing!!!” LOL love that part. Hubby and I were just watching Caddyshack the other day, followed by Ghostbusters. But I think Groundhog Day is my fave.
    And I do love it when you fly your nerd flag.

    1. There’s a little of Bob in all of us. Or is that just me? Did you know I’ve never seen Caddyshack? And Ghostbusters freaked out my kids the first time.

      My nerd flag is tough to fold up.

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