Too Late To Be Elvis Presley

by pjmcbride

Title courtesy of (OK, stolen from) my brother-in-law the Lucky Old Man. He was referring to his erstwhile musical career–he played in a locally-successful bluegrass band Back When–but it could be applied to our Mid-Century Modern generation more widely. After all, writing was an idea I hit on once I realized I was too math-impaired for a career in science. And now it’s too late for me to be the S.J. Perelman of my generation. And my generation didn’t even know it needed an S.J. Perelman.

“Well, nothing is forgotten or forgiven when it’s your last time around

But I got stuff rollin’ round my head that I just can’t live down…”

–Courtesy Of Bruce Springsteen. It’s too late to be him, too.


Your wish is my command, as always, so I bring you–


My old friend Flashing Medusa is back. Press a button, and she says, “If you look at me, I’ll turn you to stone!” That’s to educate all those unfamiliar with what Medusa does. This is necessary because the School Corporation now forbids teachers from teaching Greek myths in their entirety.

–A sign that says, simply, “Beware.” I should keep that on my door all year long.

It occurs to me, as it always does this time of year, that I own enough stuff–AS PART OF MY REGULAR LOOK–to make special Halloween purchases redundant. I already own black eyeshadow, red lipstick and nail polish, and assorted items with skulls on them. Not only did I invent the blog, I invented the Goth look, unfortunately too long ago to profit from it. I specialize in Ideas Whose Time Has Not Yet Come. Or Ideas That Someone Else Already Had.

“But you still need a witch’s hat,” Nick reminds me. He means a Sexy Witch, surely, even though that would be humanality–you know, bestiality from the point of view of the beast. Nick, stop shuddering, or I will make your scales fall off.

The new CVS store is growing by leaps and bounds. CVS–Our Motto: Our Red Lettering Is Bigger Than The Red Lettering Of Walgreen’s Across The Street!


I wasn’t going to tell this story on myself, but now that time has passed and the embarrassment has faded, it’s time to tell the story and refresh it.

On 9/11, I intended, as always, to wear my 9/11 t-shirt. I actually have 2 of these–one for the NYPD and one for the NYFD. Which one I wear in a given year depends on whether my work assignment for the day is more police- or fire-oriented. (“But what do you do when 9/11 falls on your day off?” they ask, and steam starts to curl out of my ears.)

Anyway (as the saying goes), I dug my shirt out and put it on. Hmm, I thought, the neckline seems kind of high in front. Of course, I do have another shirt on under it because it’s cool outside, so maybe it’s just not fitting smoothly because of that.

Used the bathroom at Marx BBQ, caught a glimpse of my back (probably in the course of combing my hair, if I had to guess, BUT I DON’T HAVE TO GUESS, ALRIGHT?). That’s funny, I thought, I seem to remember there being a bigger design on the back of this shirt. But I only wear it once a year, so my memory’s probably off.


–When you get to work and your Tolerable Co-Worker (as the saying goes) immediately asks, “Is your shirt on backwards?”