President Bump takes the microphone ahead of the hearing:
Wolf: the fuck? you're doing a press conference? where's Sanders?
Bump: she's been replaced by the new Pope and just sits in her secluded sitting-room the rest of her life. anyway, what i came here to say to all yous is that penalty kicks are cheap, you know? the only goals that should count are the ones kicked from on the field in the course of play. corner kicks are cheap. the crowd throwing the ball back onto the field and it goes into the goal are cheap. i respect REAL goals...
Wolf: is that a swipe at Megan Rapinoe?
Bump: i don't know who that is, never met her my entire life. is it pink or purple hair? keeps changing, i hate change. i have butter hair. the main thing i want to announce here today is that Martina, Martina Navritilova? i CHALLENGE you to a duel! a tennis match. like Bobby Riggs back in the good old days but this is gonna be REAL this time! me at my age versus you at your age, let's see who wins, fair and square, let's do this!, i'm training for it right now in the Cream House Basement. base. no need for a Wimbledon Invitational, i invite you. can i get a man-nod? Zach G? Robert Redford?
neither of these men who are in the assembled audience nod.
North Korean Kim: not me, i'm busy doing my laundry, stop bothering me.
British Kim: i don't get cable.
Bump: WHAT!!? how do you watch the news then? *makes a fist* to the moon, Kim, to the moon!!!
Bump: i WILL deport you if you lose, Martina, you gotta watch yourself, you're not really an American. i'll throw you in jail overseas. you enjoy our privileges a little too much. i'm not seeing enough joy in your eyes.
Martina: can i speak? you have a bad suntan, you need a hat.
Serena Williams: you need therapy, man, trust me. i am related to Marianne Williamson in an alternate dimension 3000 years from now.
Bump: i am my own therapist.
Coco Gauff: i will be eating Barilla pasta from now on but i'm not opening a British toffee shoppe. i mean why else would anybody knowingly wear a Barilla hat? as i was playing, the writers were already writing my 30-for-30 and my Disneyland commercial, my racquet hadn't even touched the grass, it flowed above the court. and don't you dare start calling me a typical 15-year-old brat after 15-love when i lose the point and throw my racquet at the chair umpire, it's Carlos Ramos, he deserves it! what do you expect, everybody hates satellite tournaments!
Robert Mueller pounds both fists into his tall glass of water, slicing it in two. no blood on his karate chops. he asks for more chips n salsa.
Mueller: i answered the question, you piece of shit, stop asking it. i am BOB, goddamnit. you know who i am? i am the warlock. you know what my mother's maiden name is?: Motherfucker. now i told you once i started talking you'd never get me to stop. i'm gonna read my ENTIRE FUCKING report all fucking day long!!! until fucking midnight! no milk and cookies for you ever again!
Bump tries to blend in with the crowd and hide in amongst the press, but his big head makes that impossible. he tugs on a flak jacket with the word PRESS on it.
Christen Press: stop touching my ass!
Bump: oh, i thought you were the press.
Press: there's a cancer growing on the...…...world...
Bump: *mouthing* WRONG
Megan Rapinoe: fuck.
Alison Riske hits her head on the interview table from laughing so hard.
Alison Riske: right?
Megan Rapinoe: marriage is always a risk.
Alison Riske: that was my boyfriend, not my coach. the way i figure it, that was our first argument, our first row, and we passed with flying colors, we're the stronger for having had it. he says he's already bored of me if we can't argue anymore, so...i dunno, marriage, right? i mean he put a ring on it, so...we'll see what happens...now i can afford a nice wedding band...as in band with a drummer, not ring...
Eye Luggage: that fight out in broad open daylight on the tennis court was hot as fuck. i bet they fuck hard.
Megan: i love how color was not brought into this equation, i get enough flak for my hair color.
Megan Rapinoe is currently being pulled in two polar-opposite directions: she is being pulled by her pink/purple hair by Rachel Maddow on one side and by Anderson Cooper by Megan's foot on the other side.
Megan: guys, guys, you're tearing me apart! literally! this isn't a news network wars thing.
Rachel Maddow: Megan Rapinoe is MY new best friend!
Anderson Cooper: Megan Rapinoe is MY new best friend! she's easy to talk to!
Anderson: i'm glad i'm gay. it gave me empathy. without it, i would have been your typical cis New Englander private-highschool snob in a teenage smoking jacket. i would have been one of those secret comic-book geeks who had the unearned assholery of a football jock. both footballs. i would have been one of those frat guys who overturns my own mother's VW Bug and sets fire to it after the Red Sox win the World Series for the billionth time.
Dirg: like that video game Bully.
Anderson: or in my case, Billy.
Phil Neville: i get it now. i see how you see me. i'm the nonce playing in the nonsense game. i should have been a female coach.
Marianne Williamson has been closing her eyes for a century.
Marianne: after much consideration...i don't know...
Baba Vanga: CORRECT, CHILD! okay, i'll let you off the hook: so, what's your favorite comfort food?
Marianne: okay, fine. i dunno……...vegetables i guess.
Baba Vanga: i got my eye on a new enlightened babe. my child, sorry, i'm kicking you to the curb. *stroking chin* that Rapinoe's got promise…
Marianne: or in my language, sarry. always the recruiter. well i guess i'm off. pushing out those babies in New Zealand, i'm gonna become the first-ever Female Red Power Ranger who's the leader.
Laertus: Megan Rapinoe is the first attractive woman i can be friends with. like i love her wholly as a fully-formed human being in a completely platonic way, she's just good people. edifyingly, non-sexual. she can be President. she can kill the two birds with the two stones. perfectly. sorry, Mayor Pete, you're old. news. she is the commiserative role model who fits the role.
Dirg: one of those birds of course being Sue Bird who will be squelched and squashed and collateral damage to Rapinoe's rising fame. Sue Bird will then come running---traveling---to and find comfort in my big arms. can't. nobody can break the When Harry Met Sally rules, not even Princess Leia.
Eye: it's sad that this cute chick's message of love can only be validated in this world AFTER a sports win...
Gladyce is writhing on the floor. Doryce cradles her, comforts her, and kisses her sweet bum.
Gladyce: i am not long for this world, dear! please help me! i can't breathe. i feel my whole lungs seize up.
Doryce: horrible feeling, you'll be okay, my lover, stop that nonsense talk, it's not a game! what the fuck happened?
Madame Pons: i'm reading the label of the box you bought. both here at home and at the The Store shelf. seems it's a new butter-colored-boxed brand of Starbucks: Starbucks Plus.
Doryce: yes yes! fucking Starbucks Plus! that stuff is poison! literally! it's a human health-code violation and should be cleared from all American store shelves by the underfunded Health & Human Services of the Government! what's with the 2X Caffeine deal?
Gladyce: two times the caffeine. it's supposed to add a pep in your step. but at my age that spells death. who needs two times the caffeine for anything!!? not me. i took one sip, just one sip, and my heart palpitated thumping out of my chest the whole rest of the day! i died a thousand deaths.
Doryce: this coffee causes lives. it's a heart attack waiting to happen. i need to wash my face, i'm getting all jittery thinking about it too much. don't worry, i threw the rest of the box away into that filthy smelly recycle bin we have out back. now we have no more drip coffee for two weeks!
Gladyce: i'm fine with the decaffeinated Sanka crystals.
Madame Pons: we love our crystals.
Doryce enters their bathroom with the rank scents and the thousand-year-old seashells decorating with magic not musty glue all along the outline of the huge single-sided Bloody Mary mirror above the musky sink made of hardened volcanic ash.
she picks up from the bar the big heavy thick weaved-threaded blue washcloth and puts it up to her feckled freckled face. that washcloth is so heavy it's filled with bullets and blue bear hair. it's more like a small full-sized towel. Doryce smells it and it's soaked with the utmost gunk and rancidity acidity. grease and grime and centuries-old bathlessness.
Doryce: fuck me that smell! i gotta wash the washcloth!!!
thick trails of slime-goo from the slugs hang on tight on the other side of the washcloth away from view.
Doryce: i know you'll be okay, dear. you rest upside-down on your bed. i'll distract you by entertaining you with what we would have done this week if i hadn't been banned everywhere in the world: for starters, the Fitness Festival. i would have brought my rolled-up pink yoga mat that rolled out into a piano mat and started playing Chopsticks, both parts. the crowds would have oo'd and aah'd. you would have wowed with your Overoos over your old-timey pantaloon pants and me in my cat stance until the pheromones and hayfever dust and dander from all the sunflowers around started to kick in and get in my nose and set my hormones adrift.
Gladyce wailing from the bed: ow! my butt canal has turned into a Wood Hole, it's a sandy cove. remember when we went to Sandycove?
Doryce: oh yes, remember when we visited Wood Hole together? you want me to lick it for you?
Gladyce: no, dear, this is a good sign, it's progress. it means i'm pooing again. and the poo is hardening.
Doryce: and i'd have Bama wear the soaking-wet sailor's trousers i got for him at the gift shoppe. it's always weird entering the gift shoppe of your own small town. and of course my stance would lead to the Spreckels Footrace, run on the very same spot the Romans ran it. and i'd ask for the race to be historically-accurate of course so...
Doryce: hey, the men can still wear sandals. and i'd see how many sandal pairs i'd pick up as souvenirs, cheaper than the gift shoppe. if their toes were pointy enough, i'd use that as my knife for carving in all my notches on my bedpost.
Gladyce: i swear, dear, you notch conquests on your bed while the rest of us have to cinch up to the lowest notches of our belts to score once. time waits for no woman...unless it's an hourglass.
Madame Pons: marathons are more dangerous than coffee. get your exercise artificially, by taking baths, not through exercise.
Gladyce: that poor doctor.
Doryce: cheaters reap what they sow. Inside Edition, that stupid show makes their correspondents do WHATEVER the yokel of the day did to make the tabloid news. if the dude jumped out of a plane with his cattle, the reporter HAS to do the exact same thing out of a plane with an ox they picked up on the fly at a local zoo. if the gal slid down a waterslide to her nuptials, the female reporter who has a fear of heights has to do the same thing IN a bikini not a wedding dress. i mean what did this doctor have to prove!!? he was already a doctor! he made it in society! he was respected by his peers and his community!
Gladyce: witch doctors are the way to go, dear. now give me a kiss goodnight. don't worry, i'll wake tomorrow. i'm feeling much better, your love has healed me.
Madame Pons: *red-faced not from making the spaghetti sauce* couple goals.
Goody Paul: did you feel the earth move, too?
Maria LaRosa: we didn't do it, that earthquake was caused when i sneezed. come on, get back to work, there's a flood of new flood videos coming into the station. you got your preparedness Go Bag ready?
Goody Paul: i'm ready to go when you are...
Llywarch: see? the Instagram outage was the foreshock. it predicted the big earthquakes to come...
Laertus: when The Big One hits, we'll all know, our twitter mentions will suddenly drop.
Llywarch: i don't want to check my Instagram. i'll miss a comment from you my beloved but i don't want to give the trolls any joy. i have a post i lovingly spent a year writing and crafting with an all-black picture and...
Laertus: President Bump wrote under it nice picture. and there's a reply from Codrus with the questioning-face emoji and Bump replies under that under with I'm serious. then Codrus responds this is not a Russian bot and sent him a sticker.
Eye: Roundup roundup, go.
Laertus: i swear this happened: i'm watching tv in my dorm which is the Treehouse, it's a single, kinda. two commercials, back to back: the first one is the warning spelled out in sobering serious narrator's tones that Roundup weed-killer spray causes cancer and Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and probably also smoking and vape death. the VERY next commercial is of Roundup in a bright front yard on a sunny day with a female voice extolling the virtues of Roundup: the fact that it kills weeds dead and fast on your wedding day and has a fragrant smell.
Eye: but still not as bizarre and surreal as Love Story. oh btw, Alicia Malone would have joined us, her red hair is enough for the entire Red Circle Table, but she last-minute tried out for the Australian Women's Soccer Team after Sam Kerr decided to take a break from the game to get married.
Dirg: let's dispense with the obvious: not a good depiction of cancer.
Eye: every girl wanted to look that good.
Dirg: even Ollie says himself she's not THAT good-looking!
Eye: i liked it better when you actually had no idea what Ali MacGraw had, lent it mystery, and the point was how they maintained their love dealing with the disease, not the disease itself.
Laertus: okay, i'm gonna out-Dirg Dirg on this one: if Ryan O'Neal wanted to be an actor so badly, he should have never had kids.
John McEnroe: i agreed not to be on that reality tv show. me. what does that say? and me and Dr. Drew are tight as a tennis net.
Laertus: Ryan did redeem himself with his saga with Farrah. Love Story prepared him for his real-life confrontation with cancer taking the love of his life. too bad he realized that Farrah was his OTP too late. this man wasted WAY too much time in his life chasing silly skirt. with the exception of Diana Ross of course, our next President.
Dirg: i know, what an idiot! i mean it's Farrah Fucking Fawcett!!! what more do you want! some people you have to turn the faucet on for them to make sure the water's running in his brain, like the coolant for an engine. she's the poster girl!!! Farrah displayed bravery in the face of the hopelessness of death, she displayed Valeria bravery.
Eye: fathers and daughters, the paper path. i was shocked how this film started, i had no idea what to expect, i thought it'd be another sappy love story with corny dialogue. well the dialogue was corny, but it was awesomely corny! cos it was brutal! i've never heard two people insult each other so much in my life! and i went through a divorce! my parents' divorce. no licorice for me.
Laertus: yeah, they were hard and salty and cutthroat to each other, cutting each other down at every opportunity, it was quite the sight to behold. honestly, the piano soundtrack could sell itself, it didn't need this film.
Dirg: PayDay bar? Garfield, right? i love how each year the real Harvard and Radcliffe have a movie festival for incoming freshmen which makes it a point to skewer this film, make the fucking fun of it and dowse it for the wonky wrought piece of work that it is. they don't want this film defining how they are as twin colleges, they want no association with it whatsoever and don't want it representing them. hilarious.
Laertus: the college ice hockey is so New England. the type of teams filled from high schools of smoking-jacket-wearing students. i mean what high school you know that has a highschool ice-hockey team to recruit from? certainly not the type of school we went to!
Dirg: jocks are jocks, young bucks are bucks. but that car, man! THAT car is iconic in film cars! i want that long snug car! that Hershey's-gold almond Rolls or whatever it was toddling along the highway alone on that one empty lane going to Oliver's mansion to try to win the crusty bloodline over with his new poor-but-spry Italian-painter girlfriend who bakes muffins.
Laertus: you gotta love how there's still another mile-drive down the long road after you get to the estate main gate till you reach the house. that was a Tim Burton mansion, only in the daylight.
Eye: Batman. the film is really about the father-son relationship. and how men can never express their feelings and can only bond over pregnancy.
Dirg: those wood racquetball courts were groovy. nobody spells it racketball.
Laertus: and how about the atheism!!? i mean i'm proud of this film. at that time, to be so upfront and blatant about their mutual atheism, i mean that was downright scandalous! good for them! THAT's bravery!
Dirg: nah, it's just the burgeoning hippie yuppie college scene, the start of Elitism in this country. Catholic priests swayed more power back in those days, they were basically the mayors of college towns. at least she was studying Classical music and made her love confession in a pew. nowadays there are college courses like Radiohead As Classical Music.
Alex Trebek: sorry. sohry. sorry i mean sohry, had to inject myself and get that in there.
Ariana Grande: i don't have resting bitch face. i'm just really always constantly depressed.
Kate Beckinsale: i'm the Kevin Durant of twitter. i really do wield all the power.
Cecily Strong: this is why we need SNL during the summers! we NEEDED to see Kate McKinnon's Marianne Williamson impression!
Eye: and we're back after those few messages. i love how he has that dark-night-of-the-soul where he can't find her and is having a nervous breakdown in front of all of us doing the Scooby-Doo doors dance.
Laertus: or like i like to call it: the Christmas panic, we all experience this every Christmas. it was still basically the '60s with that '60s postmodern pop Warhol wavy-conscousness swingin' film aesthetic. do we have to talk about the sequel?
Eye: i guess because he agreed to star in it. Candice Bergen the whole time is wondering if this is a good idea. cos it sullies the name of the dead and all. and Candice is wondering if she's gonna just be the girlfriend in Hollywood or move on to more substantial smoking-jacket-wearing glass-ceiling-shattering independent roles models for women. Ali really got boxed in after this role, pun intended.
Dirg: they get an F in chemistry, shoulda went to Harvard. it takes someone special to forget someone special. never jog in New York, bad things happen. hey, Candice is pretty, alright? he was right about one thing tho: going to Paris will destroy all of the beliefs you hold dear...
Codrus: i'm thinking about recruiting.
Cotard: dear mother! i mean, what do you do all day? you traipse around town holding the hand of your underage girlfriend? whistling when you stop at the graveyard?
Codrus: the trailcams i set up all around the perimeter of this town will give me good outskirt town forest fodder, in skirt, especially at night when unknown recruits let their guards down.
Cotard: i know scouting. i know the Scouts. i turned Anderson Cooper away, no investigations, i keep an eye on you. i want Anderson to keep on the path of keeping and retaining his happy-go-lucky, he's still in mourning over his mother. sound familiar? Pierre Loti and his bugle are helping us scout out instead. don't turn sour, scour.
Codrus: nice try, brother, i convey nor carry no emotion. clearly. i'm checking out all the footage now.
Cotard: unlisted youtube videos like you requested.
Codrus: *smiles* heehee. *scowls* UGH, what is this! gay porn?
Cotard: i just wanted to shock your conscience. did it work?
Codrus: *low and evil* you will never shame me, brother. you won't get me to be uncalm. your ploys are shrapnel flak which ripple off my eternal back. well this whole sojourn is ruined! your forcefield is protecting your charge from my fingers for now, but as you know, gravity doesn't last on a planet forever, hehe.
an unsconscious Velvetta lies on the bed in the Church, guarded hoveringly over by Sinphony.
Velvetta: *weakly* my heart hurts more than my head. you can't believe this is the way, sister.
Sinphony: how dare you call me that! you are NOT family! HE is!
Velvetta *weakly yet strongly* i'm your fam. you know deep down in your conscience this is not right. you'd pimp me out like i was a prostitute? we're women, remember!? we can be more than teachers, but i'm gonna teach you right now. you are gonna be the town healer! you got what it takes to be a doctor, i've seen your mind work! the pretzel, remember?
Codrus: *in hushed tones* pretzel? what's that?
Velvetta: that's how we'll win. it's the miracle food.
Cotard looks under the bed and sees a red hishi karada and squicks out loud. he looks at Sinphony so forcefully his gaze turns her gaze to under the bed and she sees it, too. Sinphony looks worried and confused for the first time in her life, like a frightened brat girl looking for love and uncertain of her future.
Cotard: *in hushed tones* Sinphony, you're about to receive a crash course in humanity. you grab one end of this rope dress and i'll grab the other. we're saving Velvetta RIGHT now!