June 13, 2008

remember all the people
that were heroes to ya
and remember all the people
you deceived

Jane Burns, Unexpecting You

The Mortgage Crisis Hits Home
-- by Klipschutz

June 4, 2008

LOS ANGELES - Ed McMahon, who for decades appeared as Johnny Carson’s sidekick on The Tonight Show, is fighting to avoid foreclosure on his multimillion-dollar Beverly Hills home, according to published reports.



Whenever I stayed up late, he was there,
chortling and feeding straight lines to JC,
needling the great man when necessary.

When Johnny joked about the price of milk at Ralph’s,
Ed chimed in with


That sort of thing.

A bulb-nosed six four ex-Marine,
all flesh and bearing up,
an Americanization of Jeeves
who always knew which end was up,

back when ‘obsequious’ was used in conversation
and dignity was earned in a suit every night
standing in front of a curtain
under the hot, bright lights,

he never bragged he’d flown
fighters planes in
the Second World War
and Korea.

His ancestors include
the Marquis d’Equilly
and Patrice MacMahon, duc de Magenta,
a Marshall of armies in France,
serving under Napoleon III.

At times he has claimed that mayonnaise was named for a forebear of his.

Now he’s 85, and hasn’t worked in 18 months
since he broke his neck,
and is $644K behind on payments
on $4.8 mil in mortgage loans.

Does Countrywide Financial Corp.
(which filed a default notice Feb. 28
with the L.A County Recorder)

even know who this man Is?

Who he’s not is a mere pitchman, leaning against Dick Clark,
on the payroll of the American Family Publishers’ sweepstakes.

In ahistorical years, friends and neighbors,
he’s as old the La Brea Tar Pits,
as superannuated as Bethlehem Steel,
as gone daddy gone as filet mignon
at The Brown Derby.

Patron Saint of Second Bananas! Friend of the working Clydesdale!

Will Countrywide toss him and his Pamela
out of their six-bedroom, five-bath house
in a hilltop gated community
overlooking Mulholland Drive?

Don’t touch that dial! (What dial?)

It’s been listed for sale for two years, at $6.25 mil.
According to the realtor,
being near Britney’s pad hasn’t helped.
"There were a hundred paparazzi" during one showing.

Fellas! Ladies! Show a little respect for a national treasure.

For crying out loud, he risked his life
for this country, and made us laugh
for more years than the Empire
might have left.

with thanks to the Associated Press and Wikipedia

The Poet's Occasional Alternative
-- by Grace Paley

I was going to write a poem
I made a pie instead it took
about the same amount of time
of course the pie was a final
draft a poem would have had some
distance to go days and weeks and
much crumpled paper
the pie already had a talking
tumbling audience among small
trucks and a fire engine on
the kitchen floor
everybody will like this pie
it will have apples and cranberries
dried apricots in it many friends
will say why in the world did you
make only one

this does not happen with poems
because of unreportable
sadness I decided to
settle this morning for a re-
sponsive eatership I do not
want to wait a week a year a
generation for the right
consumer to come along


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