I’m multitasking. I’m on the couch watching a special must-see episode of Celebrity Rehab while talking on the phone with my bookie, Frankie the Gaspipe.
Frankie the Gaspipe is giving me the latest odds on my dead pool, “So the line on Lindsay Lohan is a 3 to 1 favourite to be the next celebrity O.D., followed by 4 to 1 on Brett Michaels – but my book’s got a special proposition bet with a 100 to 1 payout which you might be interested in – Ted Nugent or Sarah Palin shooting any Kardashian with an unregistered automatic before Lindsay Lohan croaks…”
I’m just about to pull out my wallet and see how much I can afford to risk when an angry looking Nina Pennington appears carrying a bullwhip and dressed in dominatrix chic – thigh high stiletto heeled platform black patent leather boots with shoulder length velvet opera gloves, a miniskirt and a black leather corset. “Hang up the fucking phone, right fucking now before I rip your balls off,” she orders, taking aim with the whip.
“I’ll lay twenty on Nugent,” I shout into the phone while executing a perfect forward 2 ½ somersault in the Pike position which would have probably won a gold medal in the Olympics and then millions from late night infomercials on my revolutionary “run from your bitch” workout tapes, but with no witnesses I have to content myself with a smaller victory of avoiding being struck by the bullwhip.
“You fuckhead!” Nina shrieks as the whip dislodges the two Elvis Presley commemorative dishes I had recently purchased from the 99 Cent store from their place of honor over the fireplace and sending them crashing to the floor.
“Is this some sort of sex thing? I mean I like the look, the heels make your ass look great and your tits even bigger, but I’m not into S&M, at least not when I’m the one getting hit,” I ask, from my position hiding behind the couch.
“I’m going to be like Jodi Arias,” she shrieks, “Except no jury in the world is going to convict me, after what you did!”
I seize the moment and grab the whip with Nina still attached and give it a good yank. Even in the best of times Nina isn’t good at walking on stiletto heels, and the sudden pull causes her to lose her balance and tumble to the sofa where I grab her and hold on for dear life. “Now, tell me what’s got into you?”
“It’s all your fault,” she sobs.
“What did I do?”
“You’ve destroyed my life.”
“How did I destroy your life? That’s the last thing in the world I would want to do,” I say honestly, because she still has her father’s black American Express card. “How can I fix things and make it better?”
“You can’t fucking fix it. You already wrote that stupid fucking book.”
“While I’m Dead…Feed the Dog isn’t stupid, and what does it have to do with this?”
“Because of your book, your asshole friends Hollywood and Roger Debris made a movie.”
“I wouldn’t classify them as friends – in fact I don’t think I’m on either of their Christmas card lists; but what does the movie have to do with anything?”
“The movie’s based on your autobiography right?”
“I don’t know anymore. Hollywood and Roger Debris changed everything even everyone’s names, I’m now Rick Stevens, my mother’s name is now Lucy, St. Lolita had her name changed, they even changed the title of the movie to Behaving Badly. It’s like on Dragnet – everybody’s names have been changed to protect the innocent.”
“Except for mine. They didn’t fucking change my name,” Nina sobs.
I try to console her. “You should be grateful they kept your name. At least you’ll be famous enough to get into all those cool clubs – and if you take up drugs and get strung out, you can be like all those other teen stars and land a gig on Celebrity Rehab. Your career is made!”
“No it isn’t. I listen to the Offspring, I like Green Day, David Bowie, the Wildhearts, Sex Machine Guns, the Clash and AC/DC, hell I’d let Angus Young get to at least third base even if he is a midget. Now, I just read on the internet that in your stupid movie they are saying I’m a Josh Groban groupie. What are my friends going to think? I’d rather get stuck in an elevator with Donald Trump while slashing my wrists, than listen to Josh Groban. They’ve made me into such a dork I couldn’t even get into rehab, much less Celebrity Rehab.” Nina breaks down crying.
“It’s not that bad,” I try to console her. “Hollywood got a big name celebrity to play you.”
“Great! I heard she’s back together again with Justin Bieber. Justin Bieber – Josh Groban? How big a nerd does that make me? I may as well go out and buy a pair of Pappagallo shoes and a burqa. Can’t someone just shoot me and put me out of my misery?” she dissolves into tears and starts shaking uncontrollably.
* * *
It’s three days later and Nina’s picture is all over www.celebritytrainwreck.net. She’s due to be released this afternoon from the mental hospital where she has been confined on a three day Section 5150 Involuntary psychiatric hold since suffering her nervous breakdown.
I drive over to the hospital and pick her up and am surprised to see her waiting for me with a bigger smile than a Rose Bowl Queen on lithium as I complete the paperwork for her release.
As we get into the car, Nina bursts into a really insipid song called You are Loved. I’m a little flattered by the title, but it’s so saccharine, I might have to go get tested for diabetes.
“Do you like the song I was singing?” she asks.
I don’t want to upset her, so I tell her it is nice.
“I’m glad. It’s my favourite Josh Groban song and you’re going to be hearing a lot of it, she cheerfully threatens.
“Did they give you a prescription we need to take to the drugstore to fill to keep you so happy?” I ask, knowing that I’m going to borrow quite a few of whatever Nina’s been taking, if I’m going to be able to maintain my sanity.
I start the engine which also turns on the car radio which is tuned to the all news station.
“I’m standing here in front of the Tinseltown offices of a low budget producer, where demonstrators from a heretofore unknown group called “PETOB” or “People for the Ethical Treatment of Books,” have dumped seven gallons of printers ink on movie producer Hollywood and are threatening to blockade…”
Maybe I don’t need any of Nina’s prescriptions after all, I think as we drive off into the Sunset.