Nothing Ruins A Good Time Like A Pregnant Lady

One of the most touching moments of Jersey Shore — before the cast became too self-aware and destroyed everything wonderful about the premise, that is — was when Snooki professed her love for Jionni, saying that she wanted to have many "guido babies" with him (I don't even think she ruined the moment when she added that she wanted them via C-section, so as not to "fuck up her vagina"). Well, according to reports, that moment has arrived:

But sources tell Page Six that MTV is worried about how to manage the news, given that Polizzi's hard-partying, booze-swilling ways have just been turned into a "Jersey Shore" spinoff with Jenni "JWoww" Farley, which has begun shooting in New Jersey.

"MTV went into crisis mode after they found out," said a source. "They're trying to hide it because it would greatly affect the creative direction of the show." The untitled new show has just begun taping and focuses on the ladies' relationship as friends and roommates — and whatever adventures come their way.

Should they be in "crisis mode"? Um, fuck yes they should be in crisis mode. They should be in dumping-Viacom-stock-like-yesterday mode, because nothing ruins a good time like a pregnant chick.

Hanging out with pregnant ladies seems a lot like hanging out with George Bush, except that George Bush is probably more mobile. And I bet he can think of better nicknames.

The only good thing about hanging out with pregnant ladies is that they can be designated drivers — until they're too big to be in the front seat, in which case then they're just useless.

Don't get me wrong — there's a lot to like about pregnant ladies. For one, pregnant ladies get a lot of free shit. We once got a free appetizer at a Japanese place after going in to pick up a bubble tea (one of Jen's cravings). No kidding — people give you free shit — just for standing there!

Then there's the preferential treatment you get from people — and if not straight up preferential treatment then at least some sort of generalized good will. Especially when you're on your first child (I've asked a couple people and they sort of agreed), it seems that everyone loves a pregnant lady. I don't know if they're thinking about their own children or what, but people seem excited.

As a guy who spent years cloaked in the urban anonymity that mixes the well-intentioned innocent with various thieves, rapists and flim-flam artists, at least in the eyes of the general public, it was a hoot to be treated so special. I never tired of questions like "How many months?" and "Do you know the sex?" I never got this much attention before.

Then there's the narcotic moral righteousness of getting on the subway and being able to stand over some able-bodied jerkoff until he or she finally gets up for the pregnant lady. All you do is stand, hushed, with dopey big eyes that say, "You're going to do this to a pregnant lady — really?" It's the best feeling in the world. And best of all, you're not the one who has to carry the weight.

(An aside: You know who always gets up for pregnant ladies? Tough looking guys who probably have a kid or two. You know who could give a shit about pregnant ladies? Single twenty-something girls and rich guys in suits. I don't know the whys or wherefores, but that's what Jen noticed.)

I already mentioned being able to drink for two, and that is one reason pregnant ladies are "fun," but other than that, no — no! — unless it's 16 and Pregnant, you just can't make an MTV show about being pregnant, at least if Snooki's pregnancy is anything like Jen's was — Jersey City is a canvas that deserves so much more than endless Netflix queues, smooshed bladders and fragile body images.

Of course, it could be very entertaining to watch a pregnant Snooki. It could be a reality show like no other. And provided she's under enough physical and mental duress, it would be self-awareness-proof. It can be more awesome than the lady who delivered her child in the art gallery.

All of which fits into Snooki's reported plans "to bankroll her mommy-to-be status into becoming 'the next Kourtney Kardashian.'" Yes — yes, and . . .

Posted: February 29th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: The Cult Of Domesticity | Tags: , , , ,

A Hardcover Book Is The Cornicello Charm Of A Celebrity's Career

Mike (The Situation) Sorrentino was at a Staten Island Barnes & Noble last night signing copies of his new 144-page book, Here's the Situation: A Guide to Creeping on Chicks, Avoiding Grenades, and Getting Your GTL on the Jersey Shore, published by a Penguin imprint:

He wrote the book, he says, the better to communicate with fans, and nostalgia led him to choose Staten Island as the kick-off for his book-signing tour.

"I was born here and have a life here," he said.

Sorrentino's fame monster is clearly growing. Between TV appearances, plans for a new clothing line, a vitamin line with GNC, the third-hottest-selling Halloween costume and other ventures, including a third season of "Jersey Shore," he is on tap to bring in at least $5 to $10 million this year.

This is when writing a book seems like a really silly thing to do.

The Washington Post's Celebritology 2.0 blog delves further into the text, and comes up with this:

But seriously, he has to have some kind words about women? Oh yes — on page 99, you'll see his "Women as Food" comparison. A Filet Mignon is the "hottest of the hot chicks" while Dry-aged (aka the Cougar Cut) has been "out in the salt air for some time" but still has a "nice depth of flavor."

We've seen all 22 episodes of Jersey Shore, and I have to say, The Sitch really started to grate on my nerves, particularly when his toxic personality flaws took over in the final episodes of the second season and he tried as hard as he could to prevent any of his roommates from having any fun at all at the club. The producers were lucky that Angelina provided such a stake-raising dramatic tension for as long as she was in the house, because when Sitch was left to his own devices, a really disturbing side of him began to emerge, and the season didn't end quickly enough.

I'm thinking in particular of the times when Sitch, having struck out with all of the really beautiful Miami women at a club, would sit by himself on the lounge's sofa and sulk. On "better" nights, he'd simply round up everyone and instruct them that it was "time to bounce." On worse nights, he'd hit on his roommates' prospective women partners while they were off using the restroom, then somehow justify a "robbery." The best example of the latter came when Vinny went off to use the bathroom and Sitch almost immediately flew in to try to rub up on Vinny's ladystory, arguing, unsuccessfully, that Vinny "f****d up" (to quote the show's subtitles) by leaving this woman unattended for three minutes. This attempted robbery was preceded by shots of Sitch glowering on the club couch, maddogging Vinny and the lady the whole time.

The Sitch's mind games tended to be fairly transparent, and it wasn't hard to see when he was being intentionally provocative — "grenades," "DTF" and the rest is just bluster that you kind of disregard. There's no need to self-righteously agonize over his "behavior" because it's not real — it's important to view it on a continuum somewhere between, say, The Roxbury Guys on one end and maybe GG Allin on the other end (but way down on the other end). This doesn't excuse the mass-marketing of misogyny (which is really something to take up with the producers telling the monkeys to dance and not the dancing monkeys themselves), but when you watch The Sitch enough, you start to question just how much is real and how much is mugging for MTV viewers. (I'll conveniently disregard this recent news story about Sorrentino's brother.) But at the end of season two, The Sitch's campy facade seemed to break down and he just seemed kind of psychologically fucked up. And that was what was really disturbing.

I know that the Real Worldy producers learned early on that having a television in the house was a show stopper, but I can't imagine sitting in one of those places all day just gazing at navels, even navels on midsections as ripped as The Sitch's.

Season two stood out to me in the way it reinvigorated the concept of the kitchen sink drama — I loved how they'd all start hollering at each other like they were acting a scene from a John Osborne play — and then the expressive Italian hands would start flying around and it was just brilliant. This played into The Sitch's game plan, as he was clearly the most self-aware and sociopathic of the group, and he tended to talk his way into drama almost as well as he talked everyone else out of drama. But it was weird how much pleasure he got fucking with his roommate's heads, like it was a debate tournament on steroids — some kind of gorilla juicehead chode grundle debate tournament. On steroids.

That said, the finale was a letdown — there was another big kitchen sink blowout, which was cool — hey, Jimmy's hectoring Alison and he tells her that he wishes she could have a miscarriage, just to know the meaning of pain! But then the roommates just kind of make up and have a fairly uneventful last night together in the Miami house. To paraphrase Angelina in the show's opening sequence, "Um, hello!?"

At first I was bummed, but then I thought about it and, jeez, it's kind of brilliant when you think about it, because it's exactly like the end of Look Back in Anger when Jimmy and Alison make up for no good reason and you get the sense that the whole thing is going to repeat itself, just some other day and not on this particular night. On this particular night we go back to playing squirrels and bears; The Sitch obsequiously kisses Snooki on the forehead before throwing her over his shoulder as he tells her that "they're all family" or some such thing that you know he doesn't believe. And back inside they all sort of make up. And for at least that night there's no more drama and hollering, but just like some kind of fucked up family, you know they'll be at each other's throats in the first episode of season three. It's not "kind of brilliant" — it's actually brilliant! Very existential!

At the time, however, here's how I wanted the show to end: One, the producers should have taken out all the furniture and decorations in that living room area, leaving only that hulking rec room sectional sofa; Two, no overdubbed music here — let the voices be their own music; Three, this allows the roommates, who over the course of the season have shown themselves to be relatively sane — or at least not so psychologically fucked up — to stage an intervention on the last night in which each takes The Sitch to task for being psychologically abusive and just kind of weird and generally damaged; Four, The Sitch not so slowly breaks down and starts to cry, beating his breast and bellowing something along the lines of "I know, I know — I just have so much unresolved anger and pain"; Five, the credits roll on a black background with no music — just like on the series finale of The Sopranos. I would have cried, literally cried.

The best part about The Sitch is really his "Sitch-guage" language, with all the snappy "GTLs" and "grenades" and whatever other goofy vocabulary that you know he labored over trying to get just right (there's nothing off the cuff about this guy — even his arguments seemed rehearsed — unlike Pauly D, who can screeeeam!). Most of the stuff he came up with sort of flew out of my mental space already — and not for lack of trying, believe me, but just because it just doesn't seem like The Sitch really commits to most of the stuff he comes up with. I don't know if he popularized "creeping" or if the first time I heard it was when Ronnie accused him of creeping almost immediately after Snooki was punched by that one dude in season one, but I like that word, too.

That said, I think most of what The Sitch comes up with is only half baked. The "grenade" concept sounds like a bastardization of something I heard former baseball player Mark Grace say about "jumping on the grenade" — which was a version of The Sitch's "grenade" only adapted to the world of baseball superstitions in which, according to Gracie, a player would basically "jump on a grenade" in order to stop a team's losing streak (see "slumpbuster"). I understand the concept of "jumping on the grenade" where I guess you "take one for the team" in order to get your buddy laid, but how often did this actually happen on Jersey Shore? (And we shouldn't have to add that this terminology is totally offensive while the country is still at war and there are people who literally jump on grenades to save fellow soldiers.) It seemed like there were often, uh, situations when there were only grenades, and to me that's when The Sitch's Sitch-guage breaks down. Or "evolves" I guess . . . whatever, I was still confused most of the time.

Which is to say, I think The Sitch could streamline his message somewhat. This might seem like an odd thing to suggest to someone who has only written a 144-page book, but I think his message can be a little convoluted. That and The Sitch's monomaniacal pursuit of non-incendiary women sort of misses what I see as his sense of justice and morality (no, seriously — it's there, it's just that he hides it most of the time). And he seems like such a good cook! Why couldn't he have done a cookbook?

If I were to have worked with The Sitch on his 144-page debut, I would have probably first lobbied to change the title from Here's the Situation: A Guide to Creeping on Chicks, Avoiding Grenades, and Getting Your GTL on the Jersey Shore to something a little more direct. Say, Guys Just Want To Stick Their Dick In Stuff.

Yes, it goes "off message" somewhat, but we don't want a rehashed Greatest Hits Of Sitch but rather something more like Sitch As The Conduit To Understand Deeper Truths About The Male Psyche. The Sitch was all about just wanting to put his dick into things, and he seems like the perfect spokesperson for the concept.

Consider — sticking one's dick into stuff is a time-honored tradition in literature, especially American literature: Moby Dick's harpoon, Walt Whitman dry humping ferry passengers, seven-eighths of Tropic of Cancer, the liver in Portnoy's Complaint, the pie in American Pie. Even the burrito in Mötley Crüe's The Dirt . . . male protagonists are always sticking, sticking, sticking!

Consider also — the book-buying public needs — demands! — another self-help book that translates the namby-pambyness of He's Just Not That Into You into something that the book-buying public can really understand: Guys just want to stick their dicks in stuff — not "like to" or "prefer to" or "if druthers were had, would be sticking" but rather that the urge, whether acted upon or suppressed, is the modus operandi for male behavior, and the prime explanation for interpreting male-female interactions. And once the world accepts this idea, we are free to understand it, accept it, overcome it — whatever.

And The Sitch is the person we need to communicate this concept.

If I were working with The Sitch, I'd be like, hey, The Sitch, get your thesaurus ready, because this is going to be big. I'd talk to Penguin and be like, hey, Gotham Books, A Penguin Imprint, think about it — whether it's a "grenade" or a water-rich fruit, the dirty little secret is that guys just want to stick their dick in stuff and maybe they'd be like, "you mean guys just want to stick their dicks in stuff?" and I'd be like no, no, no — there's just one dick that all guys want to stick in stuff, and they'd be like, "wow, that's pretty deep" and I'd hit The Sitch on the shoulder and be all like, no way man, you're telling me — have you ever watched Jean-Jacques Annaud's 1981 film Quest For Fire? Well have you?

And so on.

And I wouldn't roll The Sitch's book out in some Barnes & Noble on Staten Island. No, I'd have him roll into Times Square on the back of an elephant. Because, again, it's just that big. And maybe we could concoct a scene where JWoww shoots a tranquilizer dart at the elephant, and The Sitch falls to the pavement, and JWoww just sits there with that modern day Mona Lisa smirk looking awesome, because, well, have you ever actually considered how cool JWoww's smirk is? It is. But then that would be JWoww's book, and that's yet another one that we still have to do.

I want to say something quippy and brilliant here but I think I should save it for the foreward.

You with me, dawg?

Posted: November 4th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Books Are The SUVs Of Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,