Friday, February 5, 2010


Christ’s Entry into Brussels in 1889. James Ensor.

Superbowl weekend always opens my Miller High Life memory can and releases a rather unhappy, rather rank-tasting foam from Superbowls past, maybe because I’ve been at too many Superbowl parties with too many drunk people. Don’t get me wrong: I love the game, except maybe when the Packers lost in 1998 or last year, when I had the winning numbers for the final square with a few seconds to go and was about to win something like 750 bucks and the goddam Steelers scored and sure, sure, they were happy, the city of fucking Pittsburgh was happy, but what about me? On the threshold of winning 750 bucks? Grim, grim situation. I keep thinking if only I had gotten up from my chair and been standing behind the bowl of cheese doodles at the snack table, if I hadn’t been sitting where I was sitting when the Steelers connected for the final victorious score, the universe would have been different, the alignments would have changed, and that 750 bucks would have been mine.

That reminds me of another unhappy Superbowl memory. Years ago, I had the same theory about space and time and alignments and such – to wit, any change in game-viewing location may alter the outcome of the game, just because the universe is undeniably different if you move from one spot to the next. Also years ago, I had a girlfriend who would hear me discuss my theory and she would tell me, “Mag, you have a huge Christ complex.” I would be like “What the fuck?” She would say, “You really believe one little thing you do can change the entire universe?” The correct answer, in her opinion, involved me admitting I’m a childlike idiot and that I’ve always watched football the wrong way, at least till she set me straight on the essential arrogance of my change-location theory, and once I had admitted as much, that she knew her shit and that I didn’t even know what shit was, then we could go on enjoying the ballgame. The relationship technique she was using – and you’re familiar with this, I’m sure – is known as ‘whittling down.’ I guess it’s a tried and true way to come out on top when time runs out on the swampy, cowshit-strewn gridiron of love. And you know what I told that woman when she said things like that to me, when she tried to make me feel small?

Nothing. I took it. Most people do.

Okay then. Today’s sentence is an example of not only what I wish I could truthfully write in response to the question above but also of the time-honored tradition of using an infinitive phrase as a direct object in a sentence. An infinitive phrase, as we know, is a phrase that begins with a root form of a verb. In this case, our infinitive will be the classic ‘to blow.’

Sentence of the day:

I told her to blow it out her ass.


I (subject, and what a fucking fantastic subject it is) told (transitive verb) her (indirect object) to blow it out her ass (infinitive phrase as direct object).

Further analysis:

Thanks to the late James Ensor for, um, donating the painting used to illustrate this discussion. The painting most definitely corresponds to my change-location theory, don’t you think? In any case, this painting hangs at the Getty in Los Angeles. Go there. See it.

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