Friday, June 26, 2009

The "Happy" Governor

My friend Matt and I sometimes have some decent sparks of creativity. We've started countless projects together...actually I have that habit with most of my friends. I love starting projects, but I'm famously awful at actually finishing anything unless I think I'm getting paid for it.

So far, Matt and I have started (or brainstormed and talked about starting) a total of five novels, three movie scripts, two video games, five web sites, and one role-playing game system. I forget how many songs we've written, but on that front we manage to finish what we start. In bursts, but still. Baby steps, people.

The interesting thing about Matt is that he is tone deaf, but is able to keep a beat, play drums (well) and guitar (getting better). He was born that way. It's a huge accomplishment in itself, and quite a statement, that he's able to write and play his own music. And a great deal of what helps Matt is that he has rhythm, and he's a math/logistics/all-that-crap-that-confounds-me whiz.

Anyway, I've kissed Matt's pale Scottish arse enough for one blog. The point is that we had what we thought was a fairly shining moment of creativity last night. Mean spirited creativity? Vulgar creativity? Blatantly vulture-like creativity? I suppose that would depend upon your opinion, but it was creativity nonetheless.

I usually try not to get political, but here goes just a bit that was hard for me to contain.

Governor Mark Sanford of my home state, South Carolina - and several other governors in these United States that I love *salutes and grins* - well, let's face it, they've done some horrifyingly embarassing things of late. In my humble opinion, Sanford needs his head examined for fighting the acceptance of the stimulus funds that were recently accepted by...let me see...EVERY OTHER FRICKING STATE before SC, thanks to him. Those months of worrying whether police officers, teachers, and other public servants that I know and love would be laid off b/c Sanford wouldn't accept that money saddened and angered me as a citizen. So I admit to having been embittered.

Well, the stimulus issue passed, Sanford got himself sued for holding out too long...I have to wonder if something slowly snapped in our dear Governor over the past year or something. I mean...pigs in the Capitol building? Really? Mark? Dude? Man, our state gets picked on enough, bro! You're going to turn our most revered area of state government into a scene from Green Acres?

Then...this week's news. The Father's Day fiasco when no one could get hold of the Governor. He was apparently too busy "hiking the Appalachian Trail" to bother with his wife and kids, not to mention his publicists. Wow. On Nude Hiking Day or Weekend or whatever nonetheless? Did he think he owed the late night comedians something? B/c he certainly delivered when we all found out he cheated on his Argentina.

I had to take a damn double take! Argentina? Srsly? was right there. Black and white. Or RGB rather. Whatever. Anyway, the point is that Sanford has nearly made himself into a wacky cartoon villain of late...(ok, an anime cartoon villain. Animes tend to show hoo hoo parts and what I hear...anyway...) So when Matt said "we should write a funny song" last night, the first thought that popped into my head was how much material Sanford has given us to work with lately, and how genuinely irritated and embarassed I've personally been with his antics as a South Carolinian.

So Matt and I sat down and write a terribly biting parody to the song, "The Happy Wanderer" by Antonio Ridge and Friedrich Moller. Here are the lyrics, and the link to the video we filmed for the song (yes, we did).

The Horny Governor
by: Shane McElveen and Matt Broughton
with apologies to: Antonio Ridge and Friedrich Moller

The governor went a wandering, the Appalachian trail
and found his clothes out on the lawn for chasing foreign tail

Sanford-ee, Sanford-ah
Sanford-ee, Sanford-ah ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha
Sanford-ee, Sanford-ah
for chasing foreign tail

It was a naked weekend for the hikers everywhere
but when you lie to everyone, it could be an affair

Monogam-ee, Monogam-ah
Monogam-ee, Monogam-ah ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha
Monogam-ee, Monogam-ah
it could be an affair

He refused the stimulus funds, we thought him silly then
But then he crossed a new line with an Argentinian!

Adulter-ee, Adulter-ah
Adulter-ee, Adulter-ah ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha
Adulter-ee, Adulter-ah
an Argentinian

He may still run for president, but would he give his all?
Or would he spend his time tossing his hot dog down the hall?

Polygam-ee, Polygam-ah
Polygam-ee, Polygam-ah ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha
Polygam-ee, Polygam-ah
his hot dog down the hall...

So far, we've gotten a lot of positive feedback, and very little negative. So for those who have supported and encouraged us, thank you for your kind words and terrible taste in music. ;P For those of you who are offended...America is a free country. That's what makes it great. Feel free to comment. You have the right to be angered or sickened or horrified. Just try to remember that we also have the right to make these songs and speak our minds.

This song was never meant to be a celebration of lewd behavior or a man's fall from grace. It's a parody meant to point out a homored outrage at a series of failings. Sometimes you either laugh or cry, folks. We're not passing judgement upon the man as a whole or any person involved. It's simply a jibe against recent silly behavior. Jackassery breeds jackassery, and we happen to excel at jackassery.

If we can't make fun of each other and learn to laugh at ourselves, it's become a sad world indeed. We all fall down. It's so that we can learn to get back up, at least according to Thomas Wayne. So let's all try to take political jokes as they are intended.

So on behalf of self-proclaimed jackasses everywhere,
God bless America.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

A Tale of Two Ladies

I'm just writing this as an one needs to feel as if they have to respond; two ladies that I grew up knowing (and loving) died this week.

I just got back from the funeral of Mrs. Annie Ruth Prosser, a neighbor of mine growing up. She was one of the most remarkable women I've ever known, but you'd never have known that to have looked at her. You'd never have experienced that secret knowledge unless you were lucky enough to spend time with her and her son, Gerald. Gerald Prosser was, is and will always be one of my personal heroes. From the age of 16, he has been confined to a wheelchair b/c of an accident, diving into water that was too shallow. Mrs. Annie Ruth took care of him for years. Bathed him. Helped him dress. Never complained. In fact every time I've ever seen either of them, even if they were in great pain, they had a smile for me. Mrs. Annie Ruth was an incredible cook with an infectious laugh...Gerald is a math genius with a completely different infectious laugh.

Gerald and my Dad happened to both go to Francis Marion University at the same time; Dad drove him back and forth, and they became close friends. I grew up with Gerald's nephew, Jay, and played with him in and around Mrs. Annie Ruth's house. Gerald, always tech savvy, recorded all kinds of fantasy movies for us to watch...I remember drawers full of video tapes with little white labels and a familiar handwriting from the pen that Gerald kept strapped to his right hand. I remember how Gerald would go out for exercise in his wheelchair, and while he was out he would make up these scavenger hunt quests for Jay and I. He would show Mrs. Annie Ruth where to hide the clues, and she would plant them around the neighborhood. We'd spend all morning having our adventure, and when it was over our reward was about four bucks each in quarters (aka: "gold") to go spend at the store down the street on Double Dragon, soda and snacks. Those will always be among my favorite childhood memories.

The other lady was my Aunt Emily, my Dad's sister. Ever since Grandma died in 1992, Aunt Emily has hosted every Thanksgiving family meal at her house. She looked a loot like my Grandma, who was a saint in my book. Aunt Emily inherited her gentle, kind, giving nature. Aunt Emily was sick a long time, and knowing what she believed, I know that she wouldn't have preferred a more appropriate day than Easter to meet her God.

I doubt any of you knew these ladies with a few doesn't matter. Maybe through this, now you know them a little because of what they meant to me. And that makes writing it worth all the salt water I'm going to have to drain out of my laptop. Thanks for reading this.

Now go and live.

"To die will be an awfully big adventure." - J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan