Dolla’ Bin Ballin’: Celine Dion, All the Way…A Decade of Song

Nate Cope, Entertainment.

Sometimes an artist’s work is not just about the music but about the experience.  When hit with the stark realization that dollar bin roulette had given me an album by power vocalist Celine Dion to review, well…WTF.  However, I am a professional and there was nothing left to do but roll up my sleeves and wrestle this Canadian grizzly.

Music can make an experience out of anything and when the first note from this Canadian diva hit my ears the nostalgia of middle school dances immediately flooded my mind.  A strange mood came over me and a sudden urge to slow dance permeated from every pore. Soon, the tracks blended into one single song, the sun set seemed more beautiful, and I began to experience a strange sense of euphoria. 

Yes, Celine sang the love theme from the hit motion picture Titanic-I love this track.  I knew it was on the CD and I just couldn’t wait anymore.  Blitzing to track 8, I hit repeat and my thoughts wandered to Leo DiCaprio’s and Kate Winslet’s doomed love tryst and the uttering of those famous words “I’ll never let go.”  With tears in my eyes, I relived every meaningful moment in an ‘03 Civic, all to the voice of a Canadian angel. 

Man, she can really hit those high notes.  With that kind of power in her voice it would be no surprise if she walked off stage with a little pee or a rosebud in her undies.  She just seems like the kind of performer who would endure that to give her fans their money’s worth.  Well Celine, you have one more fan, and a decade of your songs have made me a more spiritual person.  I’ll never doubt your abilities and want to thank you and the Walmart team for the privilege of being exposed to the love in your music.

Final Verdict on Celine Dion, All the Way…A Decade of Song: Infinite!!!!!!!!!!     

Featured Image from http://www.coveralia.com   

Space Force: A Program for the Ages

J. Cornwallace, The F.O.O.L.

While we at the Breakfast are generally not fans of glaring governmental redundancy, the recent decision by President Trump to overlook the fact that the United States Air Force already handles all issues relating to space defense, and form a completely separate Space Force incorporated into the Air Force (a force within the force), really got our applause. Please disregard that the Air Force already had an Air Force Space Command, it was outdated and there was no force behind it. Command is a much weaker word.

What gained our applause was not the additional layers added to our lightning quick bureaucracy, no, it was the millions of cheers that arose from middle aged men in their parents’ basements across this majestic land. What has been overlooked in all the Space Force hoop-la is the chance for science fiction to finally be taken seriously. What limitations, what barriers will now be shattered since we’ve added Force to the end of the name of the people who already protect space?

Light sabers, blasters, phasers, lasers, transporters, cyborgs, droids- the sky’s the limit, nerd nation. But hold back your wet dreams- what if Space Force leads to the long coveted first contact? Aliens! Oh yeah, or even better yet, alien ladies. Quick! Someone better jump on creating a dating app because Tinder might not work. What if they have flippers instead of hands? Well, I guess they could still swipe. At any rate, get ready because now that we have a Force using all the same technology and same people doing their same jobs under a different name, anything is possible.

Imagine the orange mane of President Trump glowing as he looks on and says: “warp speed Mr. Pence”-I just got some mist in my eyes. Friends, Space Force is here and we must be prepared to accept all of the great possibilities that exist as we continue to boldly go where no man has gone before, under a different name. SPACE FORCE FOR THE AGES!!!!!!!!

Bucks for Bernie: A Tale for 2020

J. Cornwallace, Head F.O.O.L.

Always curious about the possibilities for humanity to transcend the boundaries of rational forms of society, and abandon current functional systems for outdated philosophies of the past perpetually doomed for eventual failure, I decided to give one Bernie Sanders an honest chance this time. While generally skeptical of any candidate who advocates free everything, as one should be, I made it a point to seek out his website and view his platform. Immediately, one slight problem presented itself; there was no damn platform on his website. Being familiar with Bernie’s small donation, no big money, self-funded war cries, I was not surprised to see a pop-up asking for cash; however, I did not expect every page of the website to say “we’ve got a yuuuuuge problem” coupled with some jargon about failing education, banks, and pleas for cash. Ok Bernie, what the hell? Tell me you haven’t reprogrammed your website to remove all the content and just ask for money. Well, wanting to give him the benefit of the doubt I did a Google for “Bernie Sanders’ platform,” again “we’ve got a yuuuuuge problem.” At this point the irony of the whole thing began to sink in. The socialist pandering for dollars is like something out of a Monty Python sketch. Never mind telling people what you’re about Bernie, people should just trust that you have their interests in mind and throw cash at you; works for the strippers right? Change doesn’t come cheap America, never mind that it’s free to vote, just send cash now. There’s a fire and the only way to put it out is to throw money on it. It’s ok Bernie, you order the most expensive thing on the menu and then stiff me for the bill, here’s all the money in my wallet and a Texas Roadhouse gift card-NOT!! At least Donald Trump sells hats on his website, you just ask for money. How about at least sending me a shirt or something you geriatric Marxist. Maybe this is some type of short-term strategy to build up his war chest. If so, tell people what you’re up to and make your platform available. As opposed to just trying to dupe us into giving our money to nonsense like the old ladies on Dateline fooled by a fake IRS scam.

Flickr.com

Dolla’ Bin Ballin’-ZZ Top: Fandango

Nate Cope, Entertainment

As my unguided hand felt through the dollar bin, a sudden sensation tickled my fingertips.  The continuous sharp geometry of CD cases was suddenly broken by loose cellophane and broken plastic.  Straight away, my better instincts kicked in and I knew I must rescue this poor little disk lest it be lost to eternity.  Opening my eyes, the cowboy hat wearin’, guitar jammin’, cover art of ZZ Top exploded in my face like a beer shook up by Jiles.

With Texas emblazoned in rhinestones on their clothing, clearly ZZ Top hails from said great state.  Also, every one of their songs talks about Texas, drinking beer, or going to Mexico-so it’s Texas.  Thanks to Duck Dynasty, ZZ Top has experienced a resurgence of sorts-at least that’s what Tony from Walmart electronics conveyed.  He thought I was visually impaired and lost. To be fair, I was standing there with my eyes closed feeling around in a dollar bin.

At the time this album was recorded, ZZ Top must have been living on booze and Ramen noodles because they clearly had no recording budget.  Six of the 12 tracks were live and sounded like they were recorded by a 16 year old stoner with a tape deck, banging his head in the audience, and possibly ​on ​the tape deck.  Two covers of “Jailhouse Rock” by Elvis also graced this fine example of – well, I don’t know what this is.  So either they have an unhealthy man love for the king or were doing their damndest to fill up the album with whatever they had.

What was most strange was not their Elvis infatuation but their odd way of describing things. While I am not familiar with the language of Texas, one song called Tush, near as I can guess he’s referring to the female buttocks or male given the Elvis thing, struck me as strange.  The chorus specifically states he wants the Lord to take him downtown because he’s looking for some tush.  Praying to God to have someone take you downtown to grab booties sounds like the prayer of a sex offender, but at the same time why say “tush?” What, you couldn’t say ass in your song? You guys are supposed to be rock stars not first grade teachers. “We’re not like those other potty mouthed rockers, we have standards!”  Well, my only hope is the word “tush” is a bad word in Texas because if not, you blew it, ZZ Top.  

 ​Final Verdict on ZZ Top Fandango: Just Silly!!!


Burn it Down for Burns!!!

J. Murray Spencer, Sports

The Westminster Kennel Club’s annual dog show is the Super Bowl of the sport. I’m sorry, I have a hard time saying that.  The event had all the passion, glitz, and glam of any event that no one cares about- organized and supported by ultra-rich millionaires who sleep on stacks of hundreds and crushed little guys.  However sedentary my life has become, I felt that I was at least qualified to question what met the merits of classifying something as a sport or not.  Lessons in life present themselves in various forms and I am proud to admit: lesson learned.  The steel-eyed canine competitors jumped, leaped, and shook their little doggie booties, leaving it all in the arena.

Any championship event possesses a magnified potential for controversy and when a purple ribbon with a ruffled flourish is on the line, well, let’s just say controversy is sure to manifest itself.  First, to all you dogs, I wish there was a way I could put you all in a room, wrap endless stretching arms around everyone, and give you a big J. Murray Spencer super hug.  You’re all winners, except for you, King, you dumbass Wire Fox Terrier.

Burns, the Longhaired Dachshund, took to the floor with perfectly combed hair glistening in the arena lights.  Frankly, he was so good I was contemplating plans for us to run away together.  His cute little Dachshund face was stoic yet gave me a sense that he was just the nicest puppy, like one you wake up to licking your face after you overmedicate.  Burns had it in the bag or so we all thought.

As I write this, gazing at the ashtray imbedded in my apartment drywall, it is hard to say that the wounds aren’t still fresh.  However, as a serious coverer of sports (I’m hesitant to call myself anything other than that) I must put opinions aside; but screw that.  King, the dumbass Wire Fox Terrier, took to the floor and while passing the judges table his handler must have blew some little guy dust into their eyes because frankly King, you look like a cartoon dog.  Maybe we should change your name to Scooby Doo. How a dog with a beard that would look more at home on the high seas with Jack Sparrow and a little doggie pecker that wags in unison with his tail wins the showcase event of the dog show circuit leads one to believe the whole damn system is in peril.  What, did Putin rig this one too?  King, you sir are number two!  Honestly, if this had been a more mainstream sporting event sponsored by Bud Light there would have been Molotov cocktails in the air.  While I’ll never watch another dog show again (I just get too invested), this makes me want to become an activist for a fairer, less rich-folk influenced, judging.  It is high time we got the money out of the dog show circuit.       

White Lightnin’ Challenge

Nate Cope, Life and Style

Jiles is an S.O.B!!! Writing a life and style column is no easy task for someone whose wardrobe assemblage consists primarily of thrift store finds.  After much foot dragging on my part, and repeated threats of an assignment, Jiles appeared at my front door on a Friday evening.  Had I known what I know now, I’d have preferred if he’d left a flaming bag of dogshit on my stoop and run off.  Clutching a small brown bag he simply handed it to me and walked away, “review due Monday.”  Balls, both at the inconvenience of working for this tire fire shit excuse for a journalistic outlet, and at the contents of the bag.  He knows me all too well, my weakness, my Achilles heel; booze.  This wasn’t just any booze.  Oh no. Platte Valley, 100% Straight Corn Whiskey. 

wikipedia.com

Eighty proof. I drink 80 proof for breakfast; this is gonna be a cinch.  Fast forward, as I write this with pounding head and the taste of vomit in my mouth, heed this warning: “The proof or absolute volume on the bottle should never be used as an indicator of how fast or how much of something you can drink.”  Rewind: 80 proof, I was impressed by the small hillbillyish jug.  “This is gonna be sweet, I can put my Conway Twitty CD on and bring my inner redneck full circle,” I thought.

I pulled the cork (yes, a corked jug) and took a swig.  Immediately, my gag and cringe reflexes combined to perform some sort of strange, involuntary, simultaneous coughing/jerking motion.  Well this shit is leaded. Ok, one more for posterity.  Much better prepared this time, I was able to somewhat analyze what was going on in my palate.  There was a bit of a sweetness, but there was nothing smooth about any part of this stuff, even after being aged three years.  Ok review complete, time to jump on the back of this tiger.

wikipedia.com

Certain spirits possess a strange attribute in that their alcohol content does not accurately reflect their potential to fuck you up. Absinthe and true Korean Shochu are super good examples.  Well friends, I can now add Platte Valley Straight Corn Whiskey to this column of death spirits.  Four shots in I began to feel more on drugs and less drunk, uh oh.  Had the bottle not been sealed I would have thought that Jiles had drugged me.  I may very well have been under that assumption, as I sent him a string of expletives on the old iphone, to which he responded with a single love you too heart emoji; bastard.  At any rate, all that remains is an empty jug (I may have poured a bunch down the drain in a desperate attempt at penance), messes of angry Facebook messages to an ex-girlfriend, and some thawed chicken nuggets in the toaster oven who never got the glory of being heated.  Friends, I usually view liquors such as this as a novelty, as people buy them once just to try. Well, there’s a reason that people first started drinking this stuff and there’s no novelty when it comes to the shine, in actuality this stuff should be taken very seriously. 

Final Verdict on Platte Valley 100% Straight Corn Whiskey: DANGEROUS!          

Why Only a Green New Deal?

J. Cornwallace, The F.O.O.L

With much fanfare, freshman representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), henceforth referred to as “The OC,” released her much anticipated Green New Deal.  Given that there doesn’t seem to be much of anything coming out of Washington these days, it was nice to see a freshman representative float a plan that calls for a limit on cow farts and no more airplanes: fuck you Hawaii.  However, what was truly concerning was not the plan’s outright elimination of the necessities of modern society, oh no.  Honestly, for the Democratic Party, the party of diversity, to throw their weight behind something so blatantly discriminatory left all of us here at the Breakfast in a state of complete shock. J. Murray Spencer had to go home, but he’s always been overly sensitive. 

The OC ought to be ashamed of herself, couple this with the Democratic train wreck in Virginia and it leads one to question whether the whole damn ship isn’t rudderless.  Where were Schumer and Pelosi on this one, out back smokin’ a jay?  The OC must’ve never had an art class because it’s the only excuse she has for forgetting about an entire palate of other colors.  In case you didn’t know, brown and blue together make green, it takes a village. 

I’m sure there’ll be some political bologna about green being the color of the eco movement, and that was the deal’s purpose; hogwash.  If that’s the case, the OC needs to watch Captain Planet, because I recall a broad spectrum of colors representing earth, wind, fire, water and heart! 

Why only a green deal? Why not a Roy G. Biv deal?  Then we could have used a rainbow and rolled up LGBTQ and the eco movement into one nice little package. Someone please explain to the OC about two-birds-one-stone.  No, instead what we got was an overtly discriminatory plan that championed the superiority of green.  Okay, the OC can have it her way, no more blue, yellow, brown, orange, yellow, indigo, or violet.  Let’s just get it over with; call up Home Depot, order one trillion gallons of green paint and make the whole damn world green.  What a nice thing to pass on to our children: a world without color.  I have to stop, my acid reflux is becoming aggravated.  

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com


Dolla’ Bin Ballin’: The Best of Conway Twitty

Nate Cope, Entertainment.

A brutal end to a marathon paper, rock, scissors tournament left me with an entertainment section to write. Having no budget to do anything, and with little to no idea what to write about, Twittya trip to Walmart left me with an age transcending idea. Vintage is always cool. Well sometimes, and Walmart has an entire bin dedicated to vintage at five bucks a pop, thus Dolla’ Bin Ballin’ was born. Three spin arounds and a close of the eyes provide endless random entertainment reviews for artists that haven’t seen the light of day in decades. So, for the first Dolla’ Bin Ballin’, chance provided a real humdinger. Ladies and Gentlemen…we give you…the best of Conway Twitty.

Upon opening my eyes and seeing Conway’s silver side burns, an uneasiness took over not felt since a weekend in Tijuana with Jiles. Immediately, images of seedy honky tonks occupied by cowboys guzzling Pabst Blue Ribbon underneath Confederate flags came to mind. Stereotypes aside, the real glaring problem was where the hell to find a CD player. Always wondering what that little slit in the dash of my ‘03 civic was, suddenly two plus two equals four and I was cruising down the road with steel guitars a-twangin’.

Conway’s songs all seemed to revolve around one central theme, “the Ladies.” Songs about loving ladies, seducing married ladies, begging for forgiveness from ladies, and ladies in tight jeans all dominate this silver side burned mega hunk’s greatest hits. Couple this with a voice as deep as the Dollar Bin itself, and Conway is more like a Country and Western super seducer.

I was particularly perplexed by one song, where Conway appears to give his special someone a birthday present by removing all the worry that he’d never cheat on her, “promises, promises.” Real nice gift from a man who either beds or cheats on a woman in every damn song. Seriously Twitty, just go to Kay Jewelers so at least she’ll have a keepsake to remember what a prick you were.

The 1970’s must’ve been a radically different time; like backwards world, as anyone who successfully gets lucky with this creep singing in the background is either dating someone hearing impaired or, well, dating someone hearing impaired. Lord only knows the endless number of butt slaps his background singers probably endured.

If art imitates life, and Conway was anything like his songs, he either had a sex addiction or was way over-compensating because he was in the closet. So with that, I’ll leave you with a final piece of wisdom straight from the mouth of Conway Twitty.

“Cowboy, remember there’s a tiger in them tight fittin’ jeans”

Final verdict on the Best of Conway Twitty- Confusing and Creepy!

Where’d You Get Them Tight Pants?

J. Murray Spencer, Sports.

Super BowlWhen asked about handling the sports writing for The Breakfast my immediate thought was that I hate sports. However, political commentary is as numerous as grass on the prairie these days, and having no other job prospects, I thought, “what the hell.”

Less the origins of the game and more its recent role in the ongoing social justice debate, I got your back Kap, I possessed little to no knowledge, nor cared to, involving football. But with the seminal event of the National Football League season upon us I could think of no better time to embrace my new role and get to work.

Initially, I had intended for some friends and I to hit the local brew spot and watch the Super Bowl. That quickly faded when I realized I was a soon to be unemployed writer with college debt, so I opted for my apartment, a bottle of merlot, and some Afghani Kush; I have a prescription.

Overall, I found the commentary indecipherable but really enjoyed the big sparklers and fighter jet fly-over. From what was conveyed, this was one of the more lackluster games in Super Bowl history, if you follow such things. A stratosphere-like high, brief glimpses of Gisselle and a rapper entering the stadium in the form of a comet really kept my head in the game. However, after reviewing what I could read of my notes one nagging thought persisted: why does the NFL not care more for it’s players?

With all of the national anthem protest hype facing the NFL and poor manner in which they handled ensuing backlash, you would think they would have learned a lesson or two. Even more shocking was the way they blindly stumbled around the elephant in the room. One can only wonder how many players will wake up in excruciating pain years down the road from the NFL’s poor choice of ultra-tight pants. It must be terrible at the end of each practice or game to peel those spandex leg socks off and feel the blood rush back into your lower half. Why on earth in a game that requires lightning quick reflexes and agility to prevent getting decapitated would the NFL approve such a motion limiting uniform choice. 

Oh wait, just like the gladiators of ancient Rome, players are being sacrificed, blood sells tickets and the NFL wants nothing more than players to be ruthlessly crushed in front of screaming fans. Entertainment equals dollars, and tight pants give them that unwitting factor to keep the game violent. So to the players in the NFL, I say this, “Tear off your pants!”

Why a Wall at All?

J. Cornwallace, Editor and Political Hack.

Unending fights over border security have a way of making everybody sick and tired; no one wants to hear about walls anymore. The same solutions, the same offers of compromise, there is just no wonder the whole argument seems to be going nowhere. While semantics have been used in an attempt to break the ensuing gridlock- “enhanced fencing, metal barrier, Normandy fencing”- maybe the true reason this whole quandary continues is because the simple fact is most walls are ugly. When, as a child, I was made to look at the wall or stand in the corner, there was no element of nice involved. My friends, walls are just dull to look at.

park garden gardener bush

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

Innovation being one of our specialties, a recent trip to Baskin Robbins at the expense of the last of our petty cash facilitated a lively debate about the merits of walls in general, resulting in a solution for the ages. Why a wall at all? How about a shrubbery? More correctly, a shrub barrier! Anyone who has ever had the privilege of visiting a shrub maze will readily tout the merits of such barriers. Personally, a shrub maze has caused the premature ending of two blind dates and my permanent exile from the Big Brother/Big Sister program; for all I know, every one of them is still in the maze.

A single Google search turned up several species of shrubs that do extremely well in arid climates. Beauty Bush, Boxwood, Cliff Rose, Dwarf Alberta Spruce, and Butterfly Bush; side note, can you not imagine 700 miles of Butterfly Bush? I’m about to pass out. In all practicality, Dwarf Alberta Spruce would be the most likely choice as it has prickers and national defense is paramount. However, the drabness of the spruce could easily be offset by intermittent patches of Cliff Rose, Beauty Bush, and my personal love, the Butter Fly Bush. How Lovely!

photo of brick wall tunnel beside bush

Photo by Adrian Jozefowicz on Pexels.com

While political factions rarely ever meet on any major issue, 700 miles of arboriculture seems like a win for all. Think of people from both sides of the aisle, and shrubbery, coming together to marvel at the beauty. Of note, Gooseberries do particularly well in dry areas and could be an added bonus should people be able to also eat from the shrub. My friends, our future is too perilous to be squandered on ugly solutions to complex problems. Let’s make this a beautiful one!

It was just brought to my attention that someone may dig under the shrubbery. Well, if you are willing to imperil the root structure of such a feat as 700 miles of unending shrub is, then you need a serious whopping.