The Reader's Eye on Television

There's a trick to those stinky nicotine patches. You've got to attach them to the tender flesh at the zenith of the ribcage curve to get the good zang! flush of chemicals. The informational packet that comes with the box of nic patches says to put them on the outside of your arm -- do that and you're a fool, sucking at dry air, blinking parched and crisply, and rolling a cracked tongue around in your head because you're nic-fitting. Believe me, on the rib is where you want to stick that holy circle. Once you've got the nicotine patch's chemicals flowing into your capillaries, you're going to want to get something to chew on. I must've gnawed on a thousand different little objects in the past three days, and some not so small. Oh, there were unsatisfying Bic pens. I clinked my teeth on a bit of metal sleeve about the size of a pinky finger. A Sharpie, while girthy and much more fulfilling than the Bic, popped and dribbled red ink on my snappy yellow shirt.

It wasn't until I made a list of properties my chew toy needed that inspiration finally nabbed me by the neck and I found my proper oral fixation toy: (1) The thing had to be thick enough to prop open the jaw. (2) It had to be durable, but not hard like steel; plastic would be best, rubber in a pinch. (3) It was best not to leak an undesirable substance into my mouth and then guts because that was precisely why I wanted to quit tobacco.

I was grumbling at the washing machine and stuffing my clothes in its white metal maw when my muse whispered. On the filthy, lint-riddled floor, under used dryer sheets and wet toddler short pants, was a discarded clothes hanger -- its plastic diameter matched that of a cigarette.


I snapped the hanger in two, then three, then four, and broke it further down until I got a good hunk of the bottom rung and placed it between my teeth and smiled, shoulders slumped and head back, in ecstasy. Ah, sweet polyurethane relief.

If you can do it, take three days off of work. Stack your apartment with M&Ms (just accept the extra blubber as your next challenge), and flip through the cable menu until you see a marathon of something...anything. Get your chew toy, your patch, your candy, and settle in for a rugged stretch.

Trust me, I'm an expert. This is my third time.

Thursday, September 20 10 News at 11 a.m. ABC 11:00 a.m. I'm creating my own state and ceding from the rest of the country. My state, called the Great State of GetDrunkScrewLandia, runs from the Pacific Ocean just under Carlsbad, loops Las Vegas, and comes back to Ocean Beach. In my state there is only one law, "I'm president. Everyone gets a motorcycle and a weekly rocket pop." Vote Ollie.

San Diego Insider CA4SD 6:00 p.m. Since I'll be president of my own state, hell, let's make it a country. Since I'm president of my own country, I'm going to want some items. First, I need a reliable booze distillery pumping out high-grade bourbon barrel after sweet oak barrel. This isn't just for me, it's for everyone. I'm the people's president. Cook with it. Bathe in it. Rub it on your feet and teeth to cure corns and gingivitis.

Friday, September 21 California's Gold PBS 5:30 p.m. Next, all citizens are entitled to a lightweight motorcycle, zippy and good at spinning donuts, fueled either by corn or hydrogen. I prefer my subjects ride the hydrogen ones because when they crash, watch that fireball twist and rush through the sky! The corn ones are okay, but when they crash they leak vegetable oil and that's boring unless someone is there with a wok and some chicken. So, I require the people who ride corn motorcycles to carry stir-fry ingredients and Thai spices with them everywhere, all the time.

Saturday, September 22 America and the Courts CSPAN 4:00 p.m. Carrying on, let's delve this rocket- pop issue that everyone's going nuts about. All right. All right. You get one rocket pop per week. I don't want to hear any whining either. You break your rocket pop, tough luck. You melt your rocket pop, you're out, buster. Trade your rocket pop for a motorcycle ride or booze -- that's your prerogative -- but you don't get another rocket pop. If you hoard your rocket pops in the freezer and neighbor kids eat them, you are assed out, my friend. You should've eaten your rocket pops when you got them. One rocket pop in the hand is worth two in the icebox, I think that old saying goes.

The Great Dictator TCM 5:00 p.m. Of course, important issues exist outside of frozen treats and alternative-fueled, two-wheeled conveyance and the explosive cooking of Thai stir fry. There remains the sizzling issue of immigration. My policy is that GetDrunkScrewLandia works like an at-capacity bar. We're full up to the amount allowed by fire code. If you want in, someone has to leave. And if we catch you sneaking in, we either get to look at nudie pictures of your sister or we get to shoot you in the butt with a BB gun. Your choice.

Sunday, September 23 SportsCenter ESPN 8:00 p.m. Tax breaks will be given to those who can rock a pair of green-and-white Larry Bird short shorts and a Lone Ranger mask. This is the only tax code.

Monday, September 24 The Game CW 9:30 p.m. Cheating is encouraged to pass the physical fitness test required to remain a resident of GetDrunkScrewLandia. Once a year you have to bicycle to Las Vegas. It can take you two months, or it can take you two hours, I don't care how you get there as long as you get there. How can someone bicycle to Las Vegas in two hours? Exactly.

Tuesday, September 25 Jeopardy NBC 7:30 p.m. Also, there will be an intelligence test. If you fail the intelligence test, you'll be thrown out and an immigrant will be let in without being shot in the behind with a BB. To test your knowledge, you'll be required to jump a motorcycle off a ramp with fireworks and flames and things. Everyone. If you are unable to perform this intelligence test you'll have to perform the second intelligence test, the eating of 20 hot dogs in four minutes. Study up, Poindexter.

Wednesday, September 26 Rules Committee TWCNSD 7:00 p.m. My first order of business: trumpets and flutes shall announce my arrival into any room. Including gas-station bathrooms, sleeping baby nurseries, and lion pits. They'll play my song, which is entitled, "Take It Easy, Ladies. There's Plenty of Ollie to Go Around." And I'll roll my hand through the air in front of my face and grunt, "As you were. As you were," as the official presidential greeting.

Thursday, September 27 The Real World MTV 8:00 p.m. A water fight will determine my successor. Any challengers to the office will be handcuffed and armed with a drinking straw and goldfish bowl. The incumbent will be equally matched by being armed with a fire hose and a team of bikini contestants as his hose team. The call to civic duty squeals to me like a group of wet girls in high heels and two-piece swimsuits.

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