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Now in our third calendar year!

PCR #114. (Vol. 3, No. 22) This edition is for the week of May 27--June 2, 2002.
Mike's RantMike's Bust
Hello gang! Some news and notes and an old friend has returned from the dead. He looks great! Shall we begin?

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Rather then have my thoughts lumped with all of the other letters to our esteemed editor, I will use my position as a columnist to address the recent Matt brew-ha-ha. I've known Matt for more then a quarter of a century. He is more then my best friend. He is my brother. And while I agree that his recent "rails" were as far from pop culture as you could probably get, I'm happy that he will be able to continue airing his thoughts to those of us that request them. Rail on, dude!

Of things that are pissing me off this week: Abercrombie and Fitch selling thong underwear for 10 year old girls! What the fuck is that about? And, if their parents are really stupid, they can buy the matching skimpy shirt that has "Eye Candy" printed on the front. I can see the commercials now: "Abercrombie and Fitch: Where the discerning pedophile goes to shop!" Looks more and more like the FBI dropped the ball on 9/11. I'd hate to be the guy who didn't take field agent's reports of terrorist training at flight schools and one of them talking about taking out the World Trade Center seriously. And hey, speaking of the government, gotta hand it to President Bush, who is offering, for a mere $150 donation, three 8x10 photos of him in action, including one of him on the phone "taking charge" on 9/11. Plus, the Vatican has asked such celebrities as Cher and Jennifer Anniston to stop wearing crosses as fashion accessories. Glad they have their priorities straight. Let's see...........priests who molest or that damn Cher.........hmmmmm, which shall we confront first.

TOM IS DEAD (miss him, miss him, miss him)
Last Friday my cell phone rang and I heard from a rather excitable Nolan the "Tom Story" (as I'm sure it will be remembered for all time). Of course, at first I was pissed because everyone had gone to my favorite restaurant, Chick-Fil-A, and didn't get me anything. There is only one here in the state of Kansas and it's about an hour away. I have been known to drive there for a fix. Incidentally, if anyone from Chick-Fil-A is reading this, I am available for corporate sponsorship. "CHICK -FIL-A PRESENTS MIKE'S RANT" has a great ring to it. No pickles on the sandwich, please.

But I digress. Nolan basically told me the same story he relates in his opening. Great news, indeed. Talk about fate taking a hand in setting up everything. I can't tell you the number of cons I've gone to, even here in the midwest, where I've run across comic dealers from Florida who knew Tom and would hang their heads and murmur, "Poor Tom" when I'd mention his name. Tom did email me after I contacted him and, like Matt, he too remembers fondly the time everyone stayed at my place when they came to Baltimore for WorldCon. My favorite part of the trip was when we went to Edith Massey's shop. Edith appeared in several of John Water's early films and Tom wanted to meet her. I remember distinctly Edith told Tom that he looked just like her brother, which if you saw them next to each other had to be pretty impossible! Welcome back, buddy!

Thanks to Scott Gilbert for bringing back great memories of the Toga Party in his letter to the editor. Yeah, that was a hell of a night, what with Matt laying in the road drunk off his ass and screaming. I clearly remember Scott delivering blow upon blow to Matt's neck and head, to no avail. Highlight of the party was when my dad came home to get some clothes for work and Matt stumbled up to him. "Hey, Mr. Smith, I can't find any more Pepsi. I think they drank all of the Pepsi." I remember my dad just kind of gently poking Matt with his finger and Matt collapsing to the floor. And let me add here, before the arson squad shows up, that my father was a contractor. He renovated houses to sell, not for his girlfriend to burn down! She just happened to burn down this one.

Happy to report that Steven Spielberg has FINALLY earned his bachelor's degree in film making from Cal State Long Beach. I predict a successful career for this guy!

After almost 3 years in England, director Chris Columbus has decided he won't direct "Harry Potter and the Prisoner Of Azkaban," the third film in the series. Columbus told Warner Brothers he wants to take his family home.

Circle February 14, 2003 on your calendar. That's the day "Daredevil" hits theatres. The film stars Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner and Michael Clarke Duncan.

Don't forget, next Sunday, June 9th, E! will be running an all new "Behind the Scenes" feature on "Jaws." There will be a quiz.

Having pretty much committed himself to next year's get together, I'd say it's time to start making plans for next summer Mr. Drinnenberg!

Well, that's it for this week. See ya!

"Mike's Rant" is ©2002 by Michael A. Smith. Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2002 by Nolan B. Canova.