Heed not Steve

Tag: TV


TV weather –
he goes to bed awake
and gets up tired


© Steve Mitchell 2022 

If I Could Go Back…

Hey, teenaged Steve.  It’s me, Future Steve.

See that commercial, there?  The one you’re watching, right now, on your portable TV, in black and white, as you sit on the floor, in front of your bed?  The one with the jingle you’ll hear over and over and over again?


Not for nothing, but, about 35 years from now, you’ll be at work, in a little, corner snack kiosk, looking for gum.  You’ll still prefer winter green or peppermint or spearmint.  But, they’ll be all out of the mint varieties.

So, instead, you’ll buy a fifteen pack of Juicy Fruit gum.

Yeah, Juicy Fruit.

Gum is gum, and you’ll want some gum.

You’ll buy it and you’ll chew a piece.

Sure, at first the flavor will be nostalgic.  It’s one we liked in our younger, childhood days.


But, here’s the thing – every time, in the future, some 34 years from now, every time you chew another piece of Juicy Fruit gum, you’re going to HEAR THAT DAMN JINGLE IN YOUR HEAD!

♫ Juicy Fruit, it’s gonna move ya!

Every. Single. Time.

It will be stuck in your head, every time, for hours.  Each stick will equal hours of … the taste the taste the taste is gonna moOOoove ya!

So thanks for nothing Wrigley’s.

Thanks for nothing TV.

Thanks for nothing Wrigley’s TV jingle writer.

It’s not too late for you, teenaged Steve!  Turn off the TV!  Turn it off now and keep it off!

Spare yourself!

Oh, and also…

in the future, everyone will carry small, sleek, wire-free phone/camera/computers, each with more computing power than the entire Apollo Space program.  And you’ll buy that gum by tapping your computer powered watch (also with more power than the space program) onto the screen and wirelessly transferring money.


Turn off that TV!


If a woodpecker, maybe selling magazines or cookies, were to knock on my front door, I probably wouldn’t answer.  He’d knock and knock, thinking, What the hell, Dude?  Why doesn’t anyone ever answer the door?

And I’d frown and turn up the TV, thinking, What the hell? Woodpeckers are so damn loud. That one sounds like it’s practically on my porch! 

The cookies might be delicious.

I’ll never know.


waning gibbous –
our dog carries a soup bone
to the backyard


© Steve Mitchell 2019

One Fuzzy Olympic Tale

Wilbur:  Aaaand, welcome back Ladies and Gentlemen.  I’m Wilbur Gadfoy and with me is Jeanine MacElbery.  For those of you just joining us, we’re live on the scene, in beautiful Los Angeles, California, for the final round of this, the Men’s Olympic Mad Libs Championship.  Our returning American and gold medalist champion, Gus Bussman, has elected to select, which, of course, leaves the contender, Maximilian Stone, also with team USA, to query.

Jeanine:  That’s right, Wilbur.  And what an exciting round this promises to be.  While, Gus and Maximilian are longtime friends and have trained together extensively, both are fiercely competitive.  They each want the gold!  It should be an interesting head to head.

Wilbur:  For the folks watching, who may not know, explain how this round works, Jeanine.

Jeanine:  Well, as you’ve said, the contender must query.  What that means is he’s written his own Mad Libs, complete with blanks for words and names and what-have-you, and he will ask the champion for an examples of various nouns and verbs and-

Wilbur:  Verbs ending in “ing!”

Jeanine:  Yes, yes, that’s right and various adjectives and adverbs and what-have-you.  And his goal, writing the Mad Libs, is to make it as unfunny as possible.  Whereas the champion, being the selector will try to select words which will make the Mad Libs as funny as possible.

Wilbur:  Very tricky.

Jeanine:  Yes.

Wilbur:  Lot’s of strategy.

Jeanine:  Yes.

Wilbur:  Tell us about some of that strategy.

Jeanine:  Well, there’s a – You have to know the psychology of your opponent and-

Wilbur:  And what’s funny!

Jeanine:  Sure, funny.  But you have to sort of know how your opponent thinks.  For example, Gus, if he feels Maximilian will write it straight, you know, seriously, then Gus might choose more zany words which will contrast and be funnier in context.

Wilbur:  ‘¡Aye Chihuahua!’ is a funny word!

Jeanine:  A funny phrase, yes.  So, much of it will come down to how each player feels the other approaches the Mad Libs.

Wilbur:  As the selector, would you say Gus has an advantage?  Some words are almost always funny, no matter what.  Right?

Jeanine:  Absolutely.  And, as the point leader, coming into this round, it’s no surprise Gus has elected to select.  It gives him an advantage, for sure.

Wilbur:  We should also mention, tournament rules prohibit the use of blue language, in part to keep the competition family friendly, but, also, primarily, to prevent the temptation to chase the easy, nervous laughter.

Jeanine:  That’s right, Wilbur, and, in any case, at this level of competition, resorting to juvenile humor, choosing the noun ‘boobs’ perhaps, is viewed as crude and amateurish.

Wilbur:  HaHAH!  boobs…  Oh, but wait, they’re about to begin.  Here we go…

Jeanine:  Maximilian has started with an adjective, classic move.  Gus selects ‘dry’.  Hmm.  Unusual, choice.  It’s hard to know how that will play.

Wilbur:  Oh, he’s asked for a ‘name of person in room’!

Jeanine:  Always a tricky head game!  There’s only two choices.  Which will Gus choose?  Gus!  He chose Gus!  The crowd leans forward.  The fans are on the edges of their seats!

Wilbur:  Oh!  Did he just choose ‘book’ as a noun?

Jeanine:  He did!  A bold move!

Wilbur:  Book almost never works!  Everyone knows that.  ‘Book’ is just not funny.  I hope he knows what he’s doing, Jeanine!

Jeanine:  Well, he is the reigning champion.  He must have a plan.  Here he’s just picked the number five.  Numbers are notoriously unforgiving.  They either hit big or not at all.  You just have to go with your gut.

Wilbur:  So far, I have to say, Gus Bussman has avoided zany words.  He’s not mixing it up.

Jeanine:  I agree; he’s obviously going all in on one strategy.  He seems to be betting Maximilian took a wacky approach in writing the Mad Libs and so Gus is hoping his pedestrian word choices will strike a funny chord.

Wilbur:  Time will tell.  ‘Pedestrian’.  Remind me to look that one up.  Well, now, they’re almost done.  Gus has picked ‘quietly’.  Hmm.  Not bold, or…

Jeanine:  Exactly, or it’s very bold.  It’s certainly dangerous.  Gus Bussman is playing with fire at this point.

Wilbur:  That’s why he’s the champion.

Jeanine:  Okay, the Reader has taken the finished Mad Libs from Maximilian.

Wilbur:  I can barely handle the suspense!  Let’s Listen in.


A Day In The Life Of A Mad Libs Champion

After a light, late brunch, on a  dry  , sunny day, Gus Bussman   , reigning  gold   medal Mad Libs  champion  ,  decided to enjoy a nice book .   It had been five days since he’d had any down time and he  desperately  wanted to   relax   .

But, before that, with this in mind, Gus Bussman    entered his kitchen nook and sat on his favorite, comfy   chair   .  He took a long, deep    breath, closed his eyes    and sat      quietly  .  A nice break from his   usual   routine!

Wilbur:  Well!

Jeanine:  Oh my!

Wilbur:  That was almost…eerie.

Jeanine:  The crowd is, I’ve never- how would one describe the scene?

Wilbur:   Whelmed, Jeanine, the crowd is whelmed.  That was an amazing and unfunny display of Mad Libbery!

Jeanine:  No one knows how to approach this, Wilbur!  On the one hand, it was near psychic levels of perfect word selection.  Very rarely does a Mad Libs make that much sense!

Wilbur:  It’s very unusual!

Jeanine:  Very unusual!  But, on the other hand, as you’ve so rightly pointed out, it isn’t funny!  I mean, it is almost funny how perfect it turned out and yet…

Wilbur:  It’s vexing!

Jeanine:  Yes!  Vexing!  good word

Wilbur:  I looked it up.

Jeanine:  The judges are conferring.

Wilbur:  If you’re a judge, what are you thinking right now?

Jeanine:  I’m glad I’m not a judge right now.  That’s an impossible situation.  It looks like they’ve made a ruling.  They have!

Wilbur:  Aannnnd…Gus Bussman wins!  GUS BUSSMAN WINS!  AMAZING!  Has anyone EVER won with such an unfunny Mad Libs ever before?

Jeanine:  It’s unprecedented!  And yet, so is this Mad Libs!

Wibur:  It’s one for the record books.

Jeanine:  Indeed!

Wilbur:  People will speak of this ruling for years to come!

Jeanine:  It’s precedent setting!

Wilbur:  Years and years to come!  Without precedent!  And a nice hug, there, from challenger Maximilian Stone.  That’s nice.  What a good sport.

Jeanine:  Congratulating his friend.

Wilbur:  A one two finish for America!  Oh, and a distant bronze finish for first time olympic competitor, Sayed Fazel of the UAE.  A very exciting day!  But, with that, we’re out of time.  Thanks for joining us.  For those of you cutting away, please enjoy your local news, and so long, from Jeanine MacElbery and myself, Wilbur Gadfoy.  For those of you remaining, please join us, here in sunny LA, as we cover the opening round of the Women’s 30 meter Super Elastic Bubble Plastic.  Good day!


© Steve Mitchell 2018

When You’re Me, Everything Looks Like a Robot

each night
our houses glow


© Steve Mitchell 2018

And The Dog Wants Food

he turns off the TV –
there’s no such thing
as a cold breeze


© Steve Mitchell 2017


evening sky
down south northern lights
on TV


© Steve Mitchell 2017

Particles No Waves No

outside echoes
up my wall


© Steve Mitchell 2017

And the TV Reboots

all this thunder –
the power goes out
for three seconds


© Steve Mitchell 2017

Asleep Maybe On the Sofa

what’s on?
everything? I think but


© Steve Mitchell 2016