Have a BVM With Your BLT

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The miraculous apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary on a grilled cheese sandwich (now available on eBay!) reminds me of an older tale. Willie Nelson told it in the liner notes to the CD reissue of Yesterday's Wine:

Just last year one of those supermarket newspapers had a full-page story about the face of Jesus suddenly appearing on the outside wall of a grocery store in South America after a dramatic rainstorm. Hundreds of people came to pray to the image of Jesus, and some of the sick went away cured. A few days later, following another rainstorm, a new figure appeared on the wall beside Jesus. It was Julio Iglesias.

What had happened, the rain had washed off the coat of whitewash that had covered a poster for "To All the Girls I've Loved Before."

The supermarket headline said:

THAT'S NOT JESUS—IT'S JUST OLD WILLIE

For whatever it's worth, this yarn bears a striking resemblance to an episode of The John Larroquette Show.

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  1. So the moral of the story is that Willie can heal, right?

  2. Oh man, that episode was HILARIOUS. The first season of that show was perhaps the finest sitcom ever made.

  3. Hey, at least it wasn’t the Nuge (obligatory ATHF reference).

    Also glad to know someone else watched the John Larroquette Show. It was damn good that first season when it was pretty dark. Once they tried to make it more of a “family sitcom” it just tanked.

  4. Ya’ know, I suppose I saw a face in the ol’ grilled cheese samich, too, but I wouldn’t automatically say it was the virgin Mary.

    Of course, that’s because I’m an atheist bastard (literally!) with no heart (figuratively!) who doesn’t believe that Mary was a virgin when she got knocked up with Jesus.

    And it was really kinda gross looking at the damn thing and thinking that she had it for 10 years. What a freak!

  5. Nathan: Actually, the third season had some pretty good episodes, though they weren’t anywhere as impressive as the first year’s. Once it became clear that the network wouldn’t stand for anything “dark,” the show faked towards “normal” then threw itself into “just plain silly” instead. Sometimes the silliness was fun.

    My main beef with the program was the episode that was basically a long, dishonest argument against the First Amendment. The plot: Larroquette doesn’t want to let some Nazis use his bus station for some event, so the ACLU intervenes to force him. No one ever uses the phrase “private property”; the writers took it as a given that free speech means you can do what you want on an unwilling business’s property, and from that basis proceeded to argue against the idea that Nazis should have free speech rights at all.

  6. Speaking as a Catholic of Italian descent, I am deeply offended when you guys joke about sightings of the Virgin Mary. You are mocking my cultural heritage, and my lawyer will be calling you soon to empty out your bank accounts.

    Have a nice day! ;->

  7. Good? yes. Best ever, heck no. That ignores Soap and Get Smart.

  8. Well, let’s not forget the original source for the show, Fawlty Towers:

    Basil: “Don’t mention the war. I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it. So it’s all forgotten now and let’s hear no more about it. So that’s two egg mayonnaise, a prawn Goebbels, a Herman Goering and four Colditz salads….no, wait a minute…I got confused because everyone keeps mentioning the war.”

    German: “Will you stop mentioning the war?”

    Basil: “You started it.”

    German: “We did not start it.”

    Basil: “Yes you did, you invaded Poland…”.

  9. Ah, Get Smart. Not a week goes by at work when I don’t demand the cones of silence when advising some executive. Sadly, not everyone gets the reference any more 🙁

  10. Curb Your Enthusiasm is/was pretty good. I don’t have cable atm, so I don’t know if it’s still good.

  11. Sledge Hammer. They should have advertised that show as “the cop of the future, today”. I used to think it was funny when Hammer would talk about arresting someone because “he looked like he was about to commit a crime” or because “he looked guilty to me”. Turns out the farce was an accurate view of the future. Who’d a thunk it.

    I have to admit I liked “Duckman”, too.

    I have the worst taste.

  12. Grilled Cheese Sandwich… who cares? I’m more interested in the image of Ted Nugent in wood grain of a shotgun stock I saw on a bill board.

  13. The Laroquette show pissed me off, not just because it was a ripoff of Fawlty Towers, but because it was such a cheap and smarmy ripoff.

  14. Sledge Hammer was funny. I don’t think it stood much of a chance in the ratings, where I lived it came on about 2 am on Saturday nights, I think.

  15. Kevin and PL: The John Larroquette Show wasn’t a Fawlty Towers ripoff. You’re thinking of another Larroquette vehicle, called Payne. I never saw it, but I’m informed that the title was very appropriate. (That said, I can’t imagine that it was as bad as this show.)

  16. I’ll throw in my vote for Sledgehammer being a highly underrated comedy gem. I absolutely loved that show during the three weeks it was on (how long was it on, anyway?).

    I have to say though that I think Curb Your Enthusiasm sucks. Maybe my expectations were too high, having heard several friends rave about it. But I rented a DVD of the first (I think) season, and couldn’t get through three episodes. What a self-absorbed, unfunny, pretentious, steaming pile of televisual poo. Self-absorbed was gold for him on Seinfeld, but crap on CYE – go figure.

    I know it’s not too original or sophistimicated, but for my money the best comedy is The Simpsons. There were a few early seasons of MASH that are pretty hard to beat (before it was all about Saint Hawkeye and his ever-so-unsubtle morality plays), but nothing tops my little four-fingered yellow skinned friends.

  17. Jesse,

    Let me guess…

    “Hilarity ensues when a guest mistakenly calls Bea Arthurs ‘sir.'”

  18. I have to say the face in the sandwich looked more like Greta Garbo to me. Check it out and tell me it ain’t so!

  19. Wow JD, I’ll eat that sandwich if no one else wants it…

  20. I’ll throw in my vote for Sledgehammer being a highly underrated comedy gem. I absolutely loved that show during the three weeks it was on (how long was it on, anyway?).

    Two seasons if I believe (and just released on DVD). If I remember correctly no one associated with the show expected it to last past one season, and they killed Sledgehammer off in the finale. To their amazement the show was picked up for season two so they claimed the second season consisted of stories from before season one.

  21. “You’re thinking of another Larroquette vehicle, called Payne. I never saw it, but I’m informed that the title was very appropriate. (That said, I can’t imagine that it was as bad as this show.)”

    Wow, just the description of that show gives me “Payne.” Considering my local PBS station ran Fawlty Towers ad nauseum, and I imagine it was the same everywhere, I don’t know why there would be not just one, but two rip-offs.

    That’s a great story. I’ll be pretty frickin’ happy if he does turn out to be Jesus- heaven sounds pleasant if one could smoke dope and not pay the IRS.

  22. People! Noone cares about your favorite cancelled sitcoms! (‘Newsradio’ before Hartman’s murder, BTW…) That sandwich is going for $18,750.00, up from an opening bid of $3 g’s. WTF?!? I’m missing something. Has my entire life been wasted? What the hell am I doing working for a living when I could be ripping off Catholics with my lunch? Is anyone else as floored by this as I am? What planet am I on? I wanna know how to play the game! Put me in, coach!

  23. I have won $70,000 (total) on different occasions at the casino near by my house

    If you compare this to my present investment package, $18,750.00 seems more than reasonable.

  24. Holy Mother of Cheeses!

  25. The sandwich thing is killing me. Someone linked it to me yesterday morning before I went home from work.

    As for the sitcoms, Newsradio (Hartman time) was outstanding. 5 words – Super Karate Monkey Death Car.
    I still wanna be Jimmy James when I grow up.

    Duckman has always amused me.

    Arrested development is quite good, and I’m glad to see the show getting some acclaim. Fox is usually the absolute worst when it comes to starting good shows and then canceling them before mid-season. I half expected when I started watching it (purely by accident) that it would be gone in 6 weeks. I laughed very hard, which is usually a death sentence to anything on that network.

    Finally, Dead Like Me, while not exactly a sitcom, does have some truly funny parts. Love that show.

  26. Alas, once God could create universes in seven days, and now he’s relegated to arranging apparitions in frying pans. I guess it really sucks when one’s fifteen minutes of fame passes.

  27. Fox is usually the absolute worst when it comes to starting good shows and then canceling them before mid-season.

    Can’t agree more, but I will at least give Fox credit for actually taking some chances with shows instead of airing another variation of “Family Sitcom” like the rest of the channels.

    Fox shows that were good and (at the time) somewhat unique:

    Married with Children
    The Simpsons
    Family Guy
    King of the Hill
    Greg the Bunny
    Andy Richter Controls the Universe
    The Tick
    Action!
    The X Files
    Keen Eddie
    Arrested Development
    Malcolm in the Middle
    Get a Life
    Ally McBeal

    Granted, a lot of them didn’t go very far, but at least Fox gave them a shot.

  28. The writers of “The Tick”, or whoever they had to answer to, blew it. That show could have been and should have been great.

  29. To me, it looks like Fay Ray(sp?), the King Kong heroine.

    BTW-The Prisoner was the best TV show ever.

  30. “The writers of ‘The Tick’, or whoever they had to answer to, blew it. That show could have been and should have been great.”

    Yeah, it didn’t come anywhere close to the greatness of the comic or cartoon version. I was surprised though that the last two episodes of it seemed to really turn around quite a bit. They were considerably funnier than anything that had come before.

  31. I miss The Tick.

    “I finally realized that superheroes are really all a bunch of arrested adolescents who are doing nothing more productive than living out their most juvenile power fantasies. No offense.”

    “None comprehended!”

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