i'm at Skate Rabbit in New Van Nuys, a place that already had a glow. even during the day.
me: i see one last electric bicycle on the rack above you, Tony Hawk, i'd like that one please.
Simon Cowell wearing a helmet: are you crazy, mate? i had to get Worf's metal back after my two electric bikes and two slipped discs.Tony Hawk with grey hair chomping a cigar: not for sale. this thing belongs in a museum. just looking out for you, kid.
me: good looking out. i see your special boards on display at the front.
Tony: also not for sale. for a cause which shall stretch for eternity, these are my limited-only signed-edition skateboards i crafted personally with my own wood in my own woodshed coating them with Lithium Triangle lithium to honor Tyre Nichols. only 3 in existence.
Simon: oh shit here come the rowdy teens after school, they always walk by at 3:30 and add to this world's noise pollution. what is it with freshmen and skateboards?
Melissa Maker: wait why is Bagel Bakery calling YOU?
me: i have no idea. this is the one spam call i wish i had back. Melissa, i need your advice, how do you tell the married woman you're in love with that you want them to be your Valentine?
Melissa Maker: Melissa Baker, think about it.
me: they called at 7:30AM probably to inform me that the next new fresh batch of bagels was ready from the brick oven, smell-calls are a thing now. but that's still not the best part of our technology, i will leave that to my old friend:
Lucio Rossi pulls out his green telephone.
me: what is pulse dialing?
Lucio: dialing the number with your heart, not your head. feeling the number out, not memorizing it. you remember MY phone number, right?
me: um, yeah, sure, i got it memorized on my heart, etched in stone.
Lucio: you know you're not really BEST FRIENDS unless you call that friend EVERY DAY...
The Powerpuff Girls: it takes place in the 1950s.........you know, the Mad Men times...
valley fever: when Rick Dees sleeps with your mom at City Hall and becomes your new stepdad. AS IF!!!
PBS: our new KQED San Francisco headquarters looks like a giant R2-D2...
Carly Severn: yes, color me Leia. i'm sick of this cancer cap on my bald head!!! I WANT THE LEIA CINNAMON BUNS!!!
Mardith at a Vaporwave cantina: my nooch is what i eat. my booch is my homie.........whom i also eat...
Larry Dallas at a Vaporwave car wash/spinning restaurant: ironically I'M not a porn star but i've dated plenty. i'm a used-car salesman which is worse.
Eye Luggage: Moving Violations (1985) and go.
Less: 22. if only i had gotten my driver's license at 22 instead of 21 i could have skirted all of the permanent damage in my life. one more year and i would have been more mature with driving women around to Baskin-Robbins and stuff.
Gladyce: okay okay wait before we start let me get Nedra Volz and Clara Peller out here to line up with me as we do our jumping jacks in the morning. girls, are you ready?
Nedra and Clara: girls?
Gladyce: you're still young to me, i'm a witch who's been around. ONE and a two and a ONE and a three...
Nedra: like sex.
Clara: where's the beef? i kept asking my 8 husbands that, i've never had a man my entire long life who was able to get it up.
Gladyce: shirts off, ladies. blouses down, let your bosoms FLOW in the wind!!! it works two ways. all the sweat that accumulates on your chest airs out and evaporates, you don't have to take a shower!!!
Doryce: and the dots of dew on your bosoms make your tits GLISTEN.
Laertus's dad: you know i have really fond memories of this movie and me. this was the movie i can distinctly remember as being the FIRST lazy-Sunday-afternoon movie that was shown at the 2PM-4PM block on KTLA Channel 5 in Los Angeles. we children were granted that one last reprieve, that oasis of respite before we had to chew our fingernails again cos Monday and dreaded school was coming fast. all the worrying, all the bullying, all the days when our friends weren't there to protect us, could we have just 2 hours of a mindless movie to breathe?!!!
Laertus: but dad, you remember seeing the S&M scenes, too?
Laertus's dad: that's the part i don't remember. i was a kid of about 8 at the time, it's all a blur, i was too worried about taking a bath in the morning and that goddamn math pop test. i do faintly recall living next to very conservative neighbors who were sex-mad behind closed doors so i'm sure i saw it on their cable.
John Murray: so clearly they wanted Bill Murray for this character but couldn't get him. my brother was probably too busy or too busy being an asshole. i obviously copy my brother Bill at every turn here. interestingly i have MORE SNARK than Bill Murray does. which is why my whole film career consists of like 3 movies.
Jennifer Tilly: they tried to make me frumpy and dumpy, like i was some bad-angled librarian. they tried to glasses me down, but as you can see i'm hot underneath. the proof is i play a hot pregnant wife on Family Guy...
We Bare Bears: props to us for being the only cartoon that features pregnant women as characters. pregnant women exist in society, they should be cartoon characters with speaking parts not just parts. roles which enrich their interior life. especially in San Francisco you see them all the time, pregnant women jogging in the park, going to coffeehouses for bran muffins, at the skate park.........doing yoga.
James Keach: i have a punchable face.
Sally Kellerman: hey Judge Judy, THIS is a hot judge!!!
Judge Judy: you have very cold lips, madam.
Robert Altman: ...
Judge Judy: what is this court you preside over, madam? it looks like the RoboCop courtroom!!!
Clara Peller: this movie really is a document in time, a historical artifact, they cast me here the ONLY YEAR i was super-famous for the Wendy's commercial. they managed to CATCH me at my hottest high.
Nedra Volz: my bestie peels potatoes for fries in the Wendy's backroom, that's what she told me in confidence. as for me, i didn't start acting until i was in my 100s. you're not gonna believe this but when i was young i looked like Marilyn Monroe. a lifetime in Hollywood and what do i have to show for it? Diff'rent Strokes, the boys and Dana Plato were cool but Conrad Bain kept hitting on me. Earth Girls Are Easy, Jeff Goldblum kept hitting on me...
Doryce and Gladyce: you two are so CUTE!!! you were us before us!!! you were the EIGHTIES CRONES!!!
Nedra Volz: why didn't i play The Little Old Lady From Pasadena in the movie?...
Wendie Jo Sperber: i don't have any information on why one Bosom Buddy lived and the other didn't..........wait am i a ginger in this?
Fred Willard: this was one of my first roles, i came to Hollywood late, too. i was busy being a car-wash dry-cleaner.
Lisa Hart Carroll: as you can see, i'm looking for a man with heart. i thought it was Keach, i thought he would be a peach, but he's a giant asshole.
James Keach: yeah i'm a typical cop.
Rubikon: nothing sends shivers down the spine as that blue bodysuit uniform police wear, it shoots out beams of fear and bias. even in the liberal city of L.A.
Nadine van der Velde: i am responsible for making Ryan Gosling a thing.
Clara Peller: where's the beef?
Don Cheadle: right here. my first role, too!!! imagine if McDonald's had instead been named Juicy Burger...
Dedee Pfeiffer: i let my sister be a cat.
Sabrina: you're a witch?
Dedee: that's what my sister says.
Sabrina blowing bubblegum: want my teen skateboard, stranger?
Dedee: anyway i created the Nickelodeon network and drew Rugrats...
E.G. Daily on the Saturday Night Live stage in the '80s: ...
Sabrina rides her skateboard on the corner of the bodega. she lands a kick-flip as the price of cigarettes lowers.
Neal Israel: you've seen more of my movies than you realize...
Neal Israel: i went to a real traffic school after my pick-up truck was deemed street legal for street races. to make a long story short, REAL LIFE IS BORING. so we jazzed it up, we crazied it up, we Hollywooded it up. added sex and violence and black leather and that good old-fashioned 1980s political incorrectness. despite having Reagan in the White House. it's not tawdry it's real life. if we can't laugh at each other we're doomed as a race.
John McEnroe: ...
Neal Israel: the human race. street race. this was back in the day when our only social problem was smog.
Neal Israel: it was scary inside that county jail. a fish with the most beautiful big lips who could talk was there, Dan Fielding was there, Head Captain Yama from Bleach was there now an arsonist cos he was PISSED THAT HE DIED.
Dana Cannon: is that not the coolest name for a man ever? i live in the San Bernardino Canyon. and my truck is RAD, it has all that green shrubbery coming out of it, spilling out the windows, my car is a LIVING ENTITY OF TREE on the cold concrete highway.
Chuck E. Cheese: that's MY truck!!!
me: if i had gone to traffic school i would have met my soul mate. but there's just something creepy about going to school at night. i'm scared of ALL SCHOOL now, i can't step foot in another classroom again, i get the heebie-jeebies, i get Vietnam flashbacks.
Madame Pons: i got my period, with this line i already like this movie.
Indiana Jones: did you know i was a card-carrying member of the Communist Party?
Dana: fertilizer is cocaine for weeds.
Mireille: i feel so heartsick when i see a park puppet trailer rigged to a tow truck desecrated like that. it's French In Action not French Inaction.
Nedra: i'm blind as a bat but i drive alongside 747 airplanes deliberately, i was a thrill-seeker in a previous life, i beat a shark with my surfboard. in a race i mean. i will be the first person to ever crash a car into an airplane.
psychopath: in the '80s psychopaths were funny. we were just misunderstood, you know, we all were shy with a nervous stuttering giggle for a laugh, we all just wanted to be John Travolta but there can only be one Sweathog.
Jennifer Tilly: i'm an actual rocket scientist, i'm extremely intelligent. i work for NASA, NASA is still cool and wondrous, NASA helps out the Go-Bots. this was before Elon Musk ruined space travel forever by making it Disneyland instead of The Jetsons.
Takahashi: this is a brilliant conceit. i love this concept of the auto-repair shop as a doctor's office, the mechanic is a doctor, the cars his patients. the cars enter the tiny white room like a doctor's tiny white room and he takes out his office supplies to fix the car's broken heart. seeing what's wrong with the car by using a stethoscope on the windshield.
Wendie Jo Sperber: i had to really drink 12 bottles of Crisco and run 30 miles!!! Method acting, i really did that, you can't fake that expression on my face!!! my butt was oily for two years from downing cooking oil. i had to sit NAKED MY BUTT ON A FORKLIFT.
Mardith: horrifying educational Super 8 1970s film you're forced to watch in class, i feel for the older generation, my elders. this bloody scene is worse than any reefer madness. this whole concept of going to SCHOOL to learn to left- or right-turn, to follow the dotted yellow line, the impossibility of a four-way stop, to give a bicyclist the right of way ONLY when there's no sidewalk, U-turn intersections, with pop quizzes and oral reports, it's all just kinda strange.
Dana: tell me about it. the only fun we had was when we played Pole Position in an '80s arcade to practice our hand-eye coordination, hands on the wheel not the body. turns out these fun video games were just fucking recruiting tools for the Army...
Judge: i wear a black robe. and a black see-through lace nightie underneath. they're both robes.
Iran: in the '80s, you could lightly joke about us...
Takahashi: i mean this is visually cool, everyone outside at night in a huge cavernous empty three-story parking lot learning how to jimmy the trunk lock of a blue sedan, it's very A E S T H E T I C. that whole obstacle course is a dream, all the wacky traps, the water pit, the arrows flying around trying to flat your tires, it's the video game Pole Position in real life, it's something out of Double Dare on Nickelodeon, a particularly satanic stage.
Halik: i warn you, i was the arm-wrestling champion of my graduating class at the academy, i'll break your arm like fingers to Mike Tyson.
Jack Tripper: i was the karate champ at my Naval academy.
Dana: i learned karate in an '80s mall.
Halik and Tripper: you win.
puppet guy: i want to be normal. i want a normal girlfriend.
Stephanie McCarty: look you're sweet so i'll let you in on a little secret. my hair isn't blonde, it's naturally purple. i'm a punk-rocker. the real rock, the ACTUAL ROCK, the '80s rock. Madonna in NYC clubs in the '80s starting it all. i sneak out to clubs with my Jem hair.
puppet guy: okay but why do you steal cars for thrill rides?
Steph: well like my idol Madonna and all '80s girls, i can only orgasm if i'm in a speeding car. also i'm 15 and it's the '80s so there's no birth control.
puppet guy: is this what it means to be the MTV couple?
Vanilla Ice: hey Madonna, when are we gonna get married?
Madonna: so i can be Vanilla Madonna?!!! i am the EXACT OPPOSITE of Vanilla Madonna!!!
Greykid Mlem and Blep the cat familiars: okay we have to talk about these dogs, man, the dogs, those scary growling spit-spitting saliva Doberman Pinschers. THOSE POOR DOGS!!! anodyne animals, they're docile creatures, they're FORCED to be Cujo canines!!! i don't wanna know the red meat they're serving them. i mean this is what happened in the '80s, no computer special effects, those are REAL DOGS out there ready to rip a man to shreds!!!
Rubikon: yeah and notice how they send the black man to do the scene with the dogs!!! those dogs' howling faces huffing noses razor-sharp teeth are right up against the black man's face!!! i'd be SCARED SHITLESS to do that for a paltry acting sum of money!!!
Nedra: and the train, that was a REAL TRAIN, no CG!!!
Clara Peller: my dear old friend and old partner in crime you coulda been flattened like a Wendy's hamburger patty!!! I look more like Judge Judy than Judge Judy.
Amy Hopkins: don't worry, everything here is War Games, none of it is real, there's no US.-Soviet worldwide global nuclear mutually-assured-destruction calculations, it's all one big green Atari video game.
Dirg: and the sex scene is taking white clothes off in an anti-grav chamber and the clothes become a Claymation California Raisins Robert Palmer Pee-wee's Playhouse special?
Pee-wee Herman: i can't talk about sex. it's in my NDA.
Dana: now i know how a racquetball feels.
Tilly: it was kinda small. sorry. it was more like a pickleball.
Ben-Hur: Michael Jackson got his hair caught on fire but he persevered. fire didn't stop him, he went on to do that commercial for Pilk, Pepsi milk, which he dedicated to Laverne & Shirley.
Keach: i knew this plan we hatched in a junkyard wouldn't work.
Optimus Prime: yeah, junkyards are the territory of the morally upright.
Nedra Volz: don't hook me in. don't worry, kiddos, i'm not embarrassed, at my age i've seen it all. there was a lot of S&M sex in World War I. am i really 80 in the '80s? that sucks.
police convention: let's talk weapons. let's not, there are too many guns on the streets, the government is too inept to take you over, let's talk donut varieties instead, which go best with which flavored coffee.
Mardith: screw off, that needs to be used more in polite conversation.
Dana: i'm an easy-grader professor at the driving school. cos i'm already married, i don't need to screw my students. no need for office hours at the car wash.
me: you see after this movie ends and the credits roll i become INTENSELY INTERESTED in what happens next with these people. i live in this world, this world is REAL to me, it has its own interior dimensions in my mind, the lives of these people CONTINUE off-screen. i'm kinda invested. i want to see Amy move into Dana's apartment and the two of them living in domesticated bliss sitcom-style in the FOURTH Three's Company spinoff...
in the next installment of the Three's Company franchise, Dana and Amy do not have twin cars in the garage, they have to take the bus together each morning...
Nona Hendryx: "Moving Violations." the song. yeah, me. my only #1 disco hit. never reached this high before, it's nice, it feels good to finally see the apartment in the sky. the drone view of the Santa Monica Freeway. my uncle spells it differently, it's Jimi with no MY cos my uncle was a team player. he saved the X cos that's our thing, that's for women only. g'night folks. i once saw Martin Luther King , Jr. skateboarding on the freeway to attract the Black youth. the rows and lines of cars parting like the Red Sea as he rolled on into the highway...
back at Skate Rabbit, Tony Hawk is looking over a board of wood, frontside and backside ollie, checking its grain.
Tony Hawk: order it on your Brimming Biscuit there.
me: my Chromebook? i'm using YOUR name for it from now on.
Tony Hawk: there is ONLY ONE skateboard in the whole universe that has Tyre Nichols's signature on it. and it belongs to me. i had him sign it when i saw him shredding at the New Van Nuys Skate Park. i had a feeling about that kid...