Monday, July 03, 2006

4th of July

"What can be a better way to celebrate the birth of our nation than to blow up a small piece of it?"
-Apu Nahassapeemapetlan

Happy (almost) Fourth of July!

Do do today:
1. Burn a flag, just because you still can.

When I was growing up, we used to watch the fireworks on the Glenview Golf Course, while the Glenview Symphony Orchestra played the 1812 Overture and selections from Les Miserables. I'm not sure they had the whole "America" concept down, but they get credit for trying, mostly because middle class white suburbanites know how to blow things up really well, so the fireworks were always rad.

This Fourth of July, I would like to hearken back to those times. It was a simpler time, when everything had monsters in it, and everything ended with eating. And explosions!Isn't that what freedom is all about?


Blogger ranee_ani said...

Ahhhhhh... Thanks for that. Those explosions were lovely, and just what I needed to remind me of this special day. The eating also was great, but there's really nothing like dismembering explosions to celebrate the independence of a nation. (...Oh, and drinking!)

Can you believe that on August 15, India's Independence Day, it's ILLEGAL to serve alcohol in public? The Senate might come dangerously close to messing with our right to free speech. But can you imagine what would happen if someone tried to pass a law requiring July 4th to be a temperate day? There would be riots!

While I'd be one of the last to insist on a sober holiday, I think that if I had to choose between the right to drink on July 4th or the right to burn a flag, I'd choose the latter. (That right's just a teensy bit more precious, dontcha think? Besides, we'd be able to drink all the other days of the year.)

Sadly, I haven't heard of any riots in protest of that stupid ammendment proposition.

It's also sad because the less riots, the less explosions...and that's just not patriotic!

9:50 AM  
Anonymous Chris Chan said...

Actually, Apu didn't say that line on The Simpsons- it was an unnamed convenience store owner from the town where the Simpsons took their summer vacation (I believe the episode is "Summer of 4'2''" but I could be wrong). The convenience store owner was an Apu look-alike but his turban and full beard indicate that he was Muslim rather than Hindu. In recent years, when this episode is syndicated, this line has been silenced due to the changed political situation since the original airing. Similarly, the episode "The City of New York vs. Homer Simpson" awkwardly deletes all references to the Twin Towers.

6:24 PM  
Blogger ranee_ani said...

Sorry Chris, I have to jump in again. A turban and a full beard do not equal a Muslim. I've seen a fair amount of Muslims in my time and I have yet to meet one who wears a turban. A little hat? Yes. Turban? No. A full beard and a turban is much more likely to indicate a Sikh.

But I suppose these fine differences are inconsequential to the Simpon's audience, most of whom would be equally disturbed by any turban or skull-cap wearing bearded person mentioning explosions of any kind.

3:56 AM  
Blogger rock_ninja said...

I'm sorry, I have to disagree with both of you. I remembered the quote and then looked it up on the interweb, which attributed it to Apu. My memory PLUS the interweb- now that's a seriously reliable source.

5:25 PM  
Anonymous Chris Chan said...

Dear ranee_ani,
You are completely right, and I miswrote. I am fully aware of these "fine differences," as you put them, and I simply wrote the wrong religion because I looked up the reasons for the editing in syndication and read one commenter's remark that he believed that the change was done to avoid offending Muslims. This was remiss of me and I sincerely apologize for my error. Thank you for correcting me.

Dear rock_ninja,
I'm sorry, but I still disagree with you. I checked, the most extensive Simpsons archive I know of, and it clearly states that the character is NOT Apu. He is described as an "Apu look-alike" and works at the Li'l Valu-Mart.

1:25 AM  
Blogger rock_ninja said...

Dear Chris Chan,
I don't dispute that you are correct. I'm just saying that my memory and the interweb is a seriously reliable source. We have been published in journals. Well, journals in the printing press of my mind. They're all academic.

12:48 PM  

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