Thursday, August 14, 2008

Mind Your Manners

An Open Letter to the Governor of California:

Dear Mr. Schwarzenegger,

I've been wanting to say something to you for a long time: Go to hell!

Before you get all riled up, no... this isn't some political rant where I complain about your policies or my taxes. I'm not even complaining about Jingle All the Way or Twins (although both are more than enough reason to hate you like poison.)

No. I'm talking about something far more personal, Arnold Schwarzenegger: You stole my cookies.

That's right. You stole my cookies, and I want them back.

Let me set the scene for you: It was 2001. I was but a young, fresh-faced boy just trying to make it in this business we call "Show." I was working on the First Annual World Stunt Awards (First WorSt, for short) which were meant to celebrate the achievements of Stuntmen and Stuntwomen in movies & television. Instead it was a night of disappointment and shattered dreams.

The production staff had been working day in and day out for six solid weeks in preparation for the big show where you, Mr. Schwarzenegger, were scheduled to receive a very special Honorary Taurus Award. On show day, the whole city was abuzz while gifts & congratulatory notes came pouring into the cramped production offices for you.

The biggest present came from the Manner Wafer Company who dropped off a massive case (about 3' x 4') of their famous Hazelnut Flavored cookies. The box was cleverly decorated to be a giant replica of their packaging (left) but with one major difference... the popular Manner Logo was altered to have your name printed in its trademark(™) blue script:

As a long-time fan of the sophisticated, worldly flavor of Manner Wafers, I was blown away by this gesture. After all, to have one's name emblazoned on such a well-respected product is an incredible honor!

Not trusting anyone else with the task, my boss and I brought the bulky box of Manner Wafers to your trailer ourselves (Yes, it took two of us. As it turns out, hundreds of light-weight hazelnut wafers are pretty heavy to us scrawny non-body-builders.) We then set it up on the sofa directly across from the entrance to your trailer to ensure you would see it immediately upon entry.

The show and ensuing party went off without a hitch (if you don't count the dozens of injuries to various production people, the two audience members who were struck by swords, or the guy who died.) When I arrived the next morning, the cleaning crew was already sweeping up the remains of the show... and guess what I saw sitting atop a mountain of trash in the middle of the venue.

I couldn't believe my eyes--you had discarded this one-of-a-kind gift as if it was a common box of Chips AfuckinHoy. Seeing no alternative, I rescued it from the rubble heap, brought it home and proudly hung it on my wall as a unique piece of pop art, where it would be kept safe from the ravages of the landfill.

My heart was filled with joy until a couple of days later, when the calls started pouring in from your office. We were told that you somehow managed to remove the cookies from the box without realizing that your name was emblazoned on it.

Really? Because I'm pretty sure that if someone scrawled my name in letters that were one foot high across a giant box of hazelnuttiness, I'd likely notice. And so, I can only draw one conclusion: You, sir, the Governor of California, are illiterate.

Hmmm.... seeing that in print makes me realize that perhaps an open letter to you was not the way to go. Nevertheless, I shall continue--but I will do so by addressing the literate:

Hi! So as I was saying, this saga went on for days, with my boss and I keeping our mouths shut. All was well until an evil French Producer somehow got wind of the situation and discovered that I was harboring this foreign box top. She aggressively "suggested" that I return it to the office, ignoring the "Finders Keepers" stance which most of the staff had adopted.

It was exactly like the eight years I spent in a Catholic grade school: I was being picked on by the big, burly bully... only this time, not even Jesus could save me.

Eventually, I was forced to relent. I was accompanied to my apartment by a European production assistant who took the cookie box from my home... leaving behind a bare dining room wall, and a pink rectangular hole in my heart.

Thanks a lot, Arnold. I hope you enjoyed devouring my hazelnutty innocence, surrounded by a scrumptious flaky crust.

Oh wait, I forgot... You can't fucking read this. BAH! You screwed me again, Schwarzenegger!!!

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