M.C.F.A.T. XX: Answers

From around the globe they came, at least, from around one quarter of the globe, bloggers seeking answers. Brave souls stepped forth to take up the challenge of the Mysterious Cloaked Figure's Astonishing Test for what seemed like the TWENTIETH time:


Kev Bayer

The Unseen One





1) Are you offended when a film or television show lampoons something close to you, be it nationality, faith, gender, etc.? If so, how do you respond?
I think a lot of the world's conflicts could be resolved if more people had a sense of humor. In America, there's a fine line between what is and isn't acceptable, especially within the boundaries of free speech. If something is clearly a joke, outrageous for the sake of being outrageous, it doesn't usually bother me. Family Guy has crossed this line occasionally, but while I might cringe at a joke that has God getting in a bar fight, using his Son's name in vain then asking Him to get the car, within seconds the show is already moving on to its next target, perhaps the Jewish population or the mentally challenged. They've done Clinton jokes and they've done Bush jokes. They make fun of everyone equally, so I can't be too bothered.

There was recent talk of boycotting Tropic Thunder for jokes about the mentally challenged. Like Scott Nehring and Darrell, I have to wonder if the jokes are aimed at the disabled or the stupidity of characters mocking the disabled, which are two different things. Nehring points out how There's Something About Mary managed to be on the acceptable side of this distinction, and I'll be able to judge better for myself once I see Tropic Thunder. I think people have the freedom to make movies and shows that mock or disagree with things I believe in, just as I'd have the right to do the same. I'll usually check out a movie for myself rather than go by negative buzz. Catholic groups had called for a boycott of Dogma, but that didn't stop me from seeing it. I didn't particularly like it, and didn't agree with a lot of things in it, but I don't think I would ever organize and stop people from seeing something. I'd give my opinion, but we each ultimately have to decide for ourselves. At some point I'll probably watch something of Michael Moore's, but I haven't felt any particular rush or desire to do so.

2) If you were granted with superhuman intelligence and or abilities that had the unfortunate side effect of ending your life in a few days, how would you spend your final hours?
Obviously a cure would be my first priority but, failing that, I imagine I'd want to record as much data as possible to benefit others once I was gone, from technology to researching cures for diseases. Rodney McKay went through a similar experience on an episode of Stargate: Atlantis. Of course, when they finally find a way to restore his normal state and save his life, a lot of the research he did was no longer comprehensible to him. I think if there was no way to reverse my condition in such a situation, I'd also look into creating a virtual version of myself, so I could live on. Sure, it wouldn't have my soul or be me, just a computer program that thought as I did, but at least the world could still benefit from my gifts and I wouldn't be forgotten. With my luck, the simulation would probably duplicate my ordinary self, and suffer from numerous blocks and command loops that kept it from advancing and achieving its true potential.

3) If someone you knew repeatedly demonstrated poor hygiene, would you ever broach the subject and tell the person?
I was amazed by how many people answered this in the affirmative. Certainly, family pulls no punches, and my mom has probably always been the first one to tell me if I smelled. My dad's never had the greatest olfactory senses, otherwise I would have heard from him as well. There were about four or five years after college in which I didn't have a dental plan and didn't go to the dentist. At some point in that time, I somehow got a cavity in one of my wisdom teeth and didn't notice until it was a gaping crater. No one ever said anything to me about my breath, and when I discovered it I worried that it may have been among the reasons my ex-girlfriend left me. I had the tooth removed along with the other 3, and I've made regular visits to the dentist twice a year ever since.

I suspect one of my band leaders never visits a dentist. He had worked for a major corporation for about 25 years before being laid off, and after a period of unemployment he finally found a job packing boxes in a warehouse. I have to wonder whether or not the job offers a dental plan, as his breath is horrible. You can smell it within a three foot radius when he speaks. It's beyond lacking professional care. Even when I wasn't seeing a hygienist twice a year, I was still brushing every day and using mouthwash. I got into a conversation with one of the other band members about it, who wondered how the guy's wife could stand to kiss him. “Maybe she throws a handful of Tic Tacs at him?” I suggested. “He needs something stronger, like a urinal cake” suggested the other guy. Ultimately, if anyone should say anything to him I guess it should be his wife. We're certainly not close enough to broach the subject, and with that breath we keep our distance. It does hurt to hear that you smell from people close to you, but in the big picture I personally would prefer they tell me rather than laugh at me behind my back. I've always been fortunate to have friends who will laugh right in my face, for better or worse.

4) Who are some of your favorite television characters that originated one one series before being spun off into another?
These are some of my favorite supporting characters who appeared in either starring or supporting roles on spinoffs of the shows they originated on: Wesley Wyndham-Pryce, Faith, Dr. Rodney McKay, Joey Tribbiani, Nick Tortelli, Jaime Sommers, Launchpad McQuack and old Bruce Wayne in Batman Beyond.

SPECIAL BONUS QUESTION: What was the name of my first pet, and what was it?
My mom has always had cats, and the first one I remember is an orange cat named Muffin. He had a younger brother named Dudley, who passed away before I could remember him, although there is this photo of some little fat kid emptying an entire box of crunchy treats on to the floor for them:

I also vaguely remember emptying a box of Cheerios on to the kitchen table and my mom finding both myself and my orange “brother” eating off the table. As an only child, I guess I thought of the cats as surrogate siblings. It was very sad when Muffin got a tumor on his back leg and passed away.

I'll conclude with a shot of Muffin from happier times, relaxing on the couch with Cindy, a Calico my mom adopted after we lost Dudley.

Cindy was short for ”Cinderella”, so named because on her first night with us she wandered into the fireplace and came out covered in soot. Over thirty years later, and we still keep it covered and have never lit a fire.

And that does it for XX. What say you all; should there be a XXI?



Blogger b13 said...

"although there is this photo of some little fat kid emptying an entire box of crunchy treats on to the floor for them"

Um... the box is right side up and those are blocks on the floor.

Did you ever wonder why I let Glenn and Rob sit between us at the movies ;)

Yes, we need a XXI

8/24/2008 12:38 AM  
Blogger MCF said...

Hey, I said he was FAT, I didn't say he was particularly BRIGHT.

Although, there were crunchies on the floor amid the blocks too...those boxes have little flaps on the side and don't dump out the top like a cereal box, so even though I was holding it right side up and shaking it, plenty were falling out on to the floor.

8/24/2008 9:57 PM  

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