Inhuman Swill : Sesame Street

Why I love Malcolm Tucker

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I think most people know me as a fairly laid-back guy in person, never getting too exercised or losing my cool, even when someone's being a jerk to me. If that's your opinion, then you've never worked in an office with me. Seriously. Ask the good, long-suffering people at BenefitsCheckUp or Sesame Workshop. (Actually, don't ask the people at Sesame Workshop. Most of the folks I used to work with there got the ax even before I did.)

If you talked to them, you'd find out that I could be a real bastard in the workplace. Some people at my last job were apparently afraid to talk to me when I thought they'd messed up, or at all. I made at least one producer at the Sesame Street website cry. Mind you, I'm not proud of this. No, wait, actually I am.

Over the past week or so, I've watched the recent film In the Loop three times on DVD. Besides its scathing, cynical view of the political process that lubricated our way into Iraq, I can't get enough of Malcolm Tucker, the angry, profane press secretary who never encountered a functionary he couldn't intimidate or a problem he couldn't spin his way out of. I want to be Malcolm Tucker, or at least be that articulate when I'm enraged.

Tucker, as played by Peter Capaldi, is also a character on the BBC comedy series The Thick of It. That's the source of the short video clip below (decidedly NSFW in its language), which pretty well sums up the Tucker philosophy.

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Do the Muppet thing

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Do the Right Thing, Sesame Street–style:

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3-2-1, a lot of fun!

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Okay, this makes me happy:

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That's good enough for me

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Coming soon...

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Fuzzy and blue

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Laura and Telly
This post is really only an excuse to use my new icon. Funny story, though. I took Laura to the set of Sesame Street early in our relationship to watch an afternoon's taping. Of the many Muppeteers on set that day, Marty Robinson was either by far the most voluble or by far the least busy. (Probably the former.) Between takes, he and his special friend Telly hung out with us at the edge of the set, and he even convinced the rather nervous Telly to pose for some pictures with us.

Laura took my picture with Telly pressed close behind my shoulder. Then we switched places, Telly put his fuzzy purple arm around Laura, and I took this snap:

The instant I lowered the camera, Laura's mouth become a stunned O. She said, almost in wonder, "Telly just grabbed my ass."

Update!  Click me!
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Last day

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Today is my last day at CTW. I am laid off as of the end of the day. I'm rather sad. I'm wearing my Fucked Company t-shirt.

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So there I was, just working on yet another redesign of the Sesame Workshop site, when I stumbled across this parenting article.

It describes me perfectly, and it was odd to hear myself described and potential explanations for why I am that way put forward. Of course, I haven't been paralyzed by shyness for a long time, but it does still get in the way of my social interactions sometimes, especially when I'm otherwise under a lot of stress. Weird.

Maybe some of the suggestions in the article for teaching kids to overcome shyness will work for me now.

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Sesame Workshop on SNL

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Did you catch SNL over the weekend? I missed it myself, but one of my coworkers forwarded this to the department today:

Did anyone see Saturday Night Live? If you didn't, the Workshop made it onto a headline on Weekend Update for the firing of 60 employees. Rumor has it the firing was "brought to you by the letters F and U." It kind of brings a tear to my eye . . . well, that passed.
If I'd captured it on videotape, it would have been a keeper.
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Acme Heart Maker

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And now, having shown you the License Plate Maker, I introduce to you, just in time for Valentine's Day, the Acme Heart Maker.

Have a happy Valentine's Day!
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Yesterday I was called into a meeting with a couple of representatives from the German television network NDR, which coproduces Sesamstrasse,the Deutsche version of Sesame Street.

That's not the interesting thing, though. When I came into the meeting, I was introduced as the senior developer for the Web site. While that's certainly my title and true as far as it goes, it's also rather misleading . . . since I'm the only programmer for the Web site anymore!

Sometimes I just want to scream.

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