We were watching Fletch because she had never seen it before. She said, “Chevy Chase is supposed to be a total dick.”
“Mm,” I said.
She said, “Charity saw him in Hawaii once? By the pool? And she went up and asked him for an autograph and he told her he wasn’t who she thought he was.”
“That was Dan Aykroyd,” I said.
“How would you know?”
I said, “Because she told me that story. It was Dan Aykroyd.”
It was the part where the cops bring Fletch into the Chief’s office and the Chief tells the cops they can go and Fletch says, “Yeah, why don’t you guys go down to the gym and pump each other?”
I laughed. I’ve seen this movie a hundred times.
“Why would he be such a dick?” she said.
“Those cops planted heroin on him.”
“No,” she said, “I mean, in real life. Why would he tell Charity he wasn’t him?”
“But that was Dan Aykroyd. Maybe it wasn’t Dan Aykroyd.”
“Yeah,” she said. “It was Chevy Chase.” Her voice was getting higher. She sounded like Barb when she did that.
“No,” I said. “Maybe the guy she thought was Dan Aykroyd really wasn’t Dan Aykroyd. Maybe it was just some guy.”
“Whatever.” She picked some lint off my shirt. “Those guys, they’re all the same. They were all on Saturday Night Live. Why do they have to be such dicks?”
Barb would say that a lot. Why do people have to be so mean, Barb would say. I don’t think that’s very funny, Barb would say.
“Well, I dunno,” I said. “Maybe they can’t be funny all the time. I mean, I’d say comedy’s all about conflict, y’know?” I scratched my elbow. “Why did the chicken cross the road?”
“To get to the other side,” she said.
“Yeah, right. That answer’s so… y’know, obvious. That’s the joke. It’s so obvious, you wouldnt’ve thought it was the answer. It conflicts with your—”
“I don’t see what all this has to do with being a total dick,” she said.
“Well, you can’t be nice and agreeable all the time, that wouldn’t be funny. He’s supposed to be funny, that’s his job. He’s supposed to be a total dick.”
She picked some more lint off my shirt. I could feel her nails through the fabric. “I still don’t see why,” she said.
“I hate Tommy Lasorda,” Fletch says and punches the picture on the Chief’s wall. The glass shatters. I laughed. I’ve seen this a hundred times.
Jimmy Callaway lives and works in San Diego, CA. Please visit attentionchildren.blogspot.com to read more about comic books than you could ever possibly want to.