My son Andrew is a big fan of "My name is Earl". We watch it together. Father son bonding stuff. It's funny and it has a list.
By accident, we once paused on Earl's list. (Those who haven't seen the programme will just have to bear with me. The important thing is the list. Not Earl.) Two hundred and sixty three entries his list has. Or something like that. I would ask Andrew, but he's upstairs. He would remember the exact number. He has a fresh young brain. He's observant, too. He can recognise the individual wood pigeons in our garden. It's something to do with the colouring of the neck.
Back to Earl's list. Each episode is based around one entry on the list. Whilst paused, you could read what was on the list. Sure enough, each has been the basis of an episode.
I know how American series work. A network show will air (notice how au fait I am with American telly terminology) twenty-something episodes a year. The makers of "My name is Earl" must be hoping for at least a ten-year run. Andrew would be happy. Though, being eleven, his tastes are likely to change alarmingly in two years' time. I may have to watch series 6 alone.
When I saw the freeze-framed list I thought "What a great idea it would be if the makers showed all 200-odd entries now". Why? Because it would be great fun (I try to avoid the word "challenge", excepting job interviews and chats with my boss) to set writers the challenge of thinking up a story around a pre-defined title.
It got me thinking. There's no reason why I couldn't set myself a fun. I could pick some random number - three, say - of titles to put on a list of my own. And then concoct a post around them. Or do you think three is too big a number for me to commit to? What about 19 then? or 53?
You can decide. Unless you come up with something stupid, then I'll revert to Stalin mode. You pick how long my list is and come up with the titles.
In a perfect world, I wouldn't bother limiting your imagination. In our world, AB Budweiser is the biggest-selling beer. (At least I think that's true. Or is it Bud Light? You know what I was getting at, something uninspiring.) Until the Bud keg runs dry, I'll insist on rules:
- nothing obscene
- nothing libelous
- no more than ten words long (unless I think it's funny)
- the words "orange", "Marlon" and "something" are not allowed
I always worry if I'm making myself understood. Send me titles for my blog posts. We'll know how many lucky winners there will be after the close of the poll. Which, for no good reason except confusion, I'll open before I post this explanation.
A One Way Ticket to Munich - Another c. 1900 éloge of beer comes from another pen working for the Catholic Journal of Rochester, NY, this time scratching out praises to Munich, Bavaria...
16 hours ago