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Your Failure, My Success 

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People often ask, "Hey, Wm.™ Steven Hump-Me! What is the secret of your success?" Well, that's a complicated question: How did I - a barely literate narcissist and sex addict born in the rabid goat-infested mountains of Lithuania - rise to the lofty position of America's most beloved television columnist? Well, frankly... I have YOU to thank.
Not because you continue to read my column every week - I'm pretty sure most of you don't. As it turns out, my success is largely dependent on YOUR FAILURE. And for that, I thank you.

My TV column has continued uninterrupted for years primarily because of your failure to stop it. It's kind of like a can of dog food rolling down a hill - unless you currently have a starving dog at home, why bother doing anything other than watch it roll past? And so, this column - this 22-ounce can of Alpo - just keeps on rolling, and will continue to roll until someone overcomes enough of their lethargy to do something - anything - to stop it, or aliens blow up the earth. I'm banking on the latter.

You also failed in squashing my success by not applying for my job. Seriously - it could've been YOU spending the last few years grinding out ass and monkey jokes (though in truth, I've been using an "ass and monkey joke generator" since 2008). However, you FAILED to step up to my editor that fateful day in 1967 and exclaim, "Say, Chief! I'd love to write that TV column that mysteriously no one else seems to want!" REALLY. At that point, a syphilitic red-ass monkey with syphilis and a big red ass could've had this job. Hmmm... I think my "ass and monkey joke generator" is on the blink.

HOWEVER! There are instances in life when someone's success is NOT based on the failure of others. Let's take Conan O'Brien, for example. His new late-night talk show, aptly titled Conan, debuts this week (TBS, Mon Nov 8, 11 pm)! YAYYYY! Or will it be "BOOOOO"?

For the past year, since losing the Tonight Show gig to that hopeless buffoon Jay Leno, Coco has been riding a wave of positive vibes from fans all over the country - largely because he's kind of awesome, but also because he got such a raw deal from NBC. Obviously, we all take great delight in knowing that since Leno took back the Tonight Show, his ratings have fallen below that of Conan's when he was hosting the gabfest - though, honestly, Coco's numbers were never anything to celebrate.

And herein lies the problem! In order for Coco to succeed on TBS, he'll have to do so on his own terms - and not because of Leno's continued and hilarious failure. No one cares about Leno anymore (other than your Werther's-sucking grandma), and the ratings prove it. For Conan to make it big, he's gonna have to be at the top of his creative game - because it's no longer about "Conan vs. Leno"; it's about "Is Conan entertaining me or not?"

So tune in this Monday to see if Conan becomes the king of the jungle or an ass-sniffing monkey ass sniffing monkey ass. What?? GODDAMN THIS STUPID GENERATOR!!!

Keep failing please. steve@portlandmercury.com

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