Sunday, May 18, 2008

She's a Cross Between a What and a What?

The very kind Alec BaldwinOK, I've never been a big Alec Baldwin fan. That's not to say that I had something against Alec Baldwin. I just never really paid any attention to whether or not he was still walking the face of the planet is all. I hold nothing against Alec, or any of his lesser-known-and-still-riding-on-his-famous-coattails Baldwin brothers. But then Alec started getting a bit of bad press. (Yeah, that will happen when you leave a highly inappropriate and brutally scathing voicemail message for your young daughter where you call her a "little pig" among other no-so flattering and highly inappropriate terms of endearment.) And I thought he was scum. But no longer.

Alec Baldwin did an interview with Morley Safer on 60 Minutes. (Yes! Morley is still alive! I was shocked as well! Who knew?) In the intervieFrom the looks of it, 60 Minutes might be all he has left!w, he came across as one of the most direct, well spoken individuals who are in the public eye. On top of that, he actually managed to call Morley on some of his more "judgmental" questions and still be able to take responsibility for his behaviors. Granted, he did a little justifying of the behaviors, but his justifications weren't blaming and they weren't displacing the fact that it was his choice to be the pig that he was and he feels badly about how he behaved and he's doing things differently. You can't really ask for much more than that when someone screws up. The man also has a ridiculously dry wit, an extremely calm demeanor and an extensive vocabulary that serves him well when describing others in adversarial positions.

Morley begins by reminding Alec of how bad the message that he left for his daughter was and how "appalled" he was when he first heard it. Of course. Just because it was over a year ago that Alec had lost his temper and had been apologetic about it ever since is no reason to let him off the hook so easily. No, it's pretty important to Morley that he continue to look down upon Alec as if he is scum, because there's never any redemption in the 60 Minutes correspondents world. (What kind of a news story would that make?)
Alec Baldwin and his daughter
So Alec calmly responds to him with, "Listen, you use words like "appalled" and you have, if I may say so, a pretty judgmental tone of me. I think that as truly sorry as I am that happened, that it truly illustrates how difficult this process (parental alienation of their child) has become for many, many people." Well said, Alec. Take that, Morley.

How are you to-day, my lit-tle dar-ling?Alec conveys that he knows what he did was wrong and he's conscious of it and he's not going to be doing it ever again, when he continues with, "You can pretty much guess that I'll never leave another voice mail message for my daughter again that isn't like something out of a Rodger's and Hammerstein score. (begins singing) 'How are you to-day, my lit-tle dar-ling?!' "

But it's later in the interview when Alec Baldwin utters what is quite possibly one of the best, quotes/insults that I have ever heard. It's definitely in my Top Three. (It's right up there with "So why don't you turn around and walk those 8 dollar pumps back to the trailer park and cook dinner for Cousin Dad?" and "She was a bitch with a capital 'C.' ") Morley says to him, "You called (Kim Basinger's lawyer) Judy Bogen a '300-pound homunculus with a face like a cross between a bulldog and a clenched fist'?"

And Baldwin replied (here it comes), “I was being kind, Morley. I was being kind."

A 300-pound homunculus. That is great. This guy is hilarious. Ten bucks says that the lawyer had to look up 'homunculus'. No way that she didn't know what it was. (I didn't know what it was, but I knew it was funny! If I had to look it up, I know she did.)
The divide between these two is there in real life as well
Baldwin makes statements like that in the same, straightforward, calm, monotone manner about other topics as well. In reference to statements Kim Basinger made to him he responded "My ex-wife once said, 'He's Saddam Hussein.' She said that. And I thought, 'Do I hide myself in cramped underground quarters? Do I like to shoot firearms in a celebratory way? Did I execute whole villages of people and bulldoze their bodies into a pit? What are you saying? Explain this to me.' " Well, he's clearly up on his current events, that's rather evident.

Baldwin also defends Tom Cruise with the same, rather snarky style, by saying, "I think what's been done to Tom is kind of silly. I don't really understand Tom's religious beliefs; nor do I want to. All I know is I don't see people who are disciples of Tom's faith driving planes into the World Trade Center. When Scientologists start crashing planes into the Pentagon, then I think we should sit Tom down and have a grand jury talk to him. In the meantime, let's just leave him alone." Fair enough.

So, you see, he's not a bad guy. He's just a guy. A pretty smart guy with an extensive vocabulary that he's armed with and ready to use if the situation should ever present itself to him again. And, oh God, I hope it does. Soon.

Oh, in case you've been wondering, a "homunculus" is "a miniature adult that in the theory of preformation is held to inhabit the germ cell and to produce a mature individual merely by an increase in size.," according to the fine folks over yonder at Merriam-Webster online. Homunculus pic o' goodness below. A 300 pound homunculus with a face that is a cross between a bulldog and a clenched fist

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