Sunday, October 2, 2011

Briefly noted with Poodle Bitch: Bret Michaels's "Pets Rock" products; PETA's chickens and sharks, and the Disney Channel's blogging dog program

Poodle Bitch does not believe in the concept of "guilty pleasures." If in fact she finds pleasure in something, that is in itself enough justification for liking it. "Guilt" is something that weak people use to establish power over everyone else. And as for fearing the judgment of others, well, if you'll pardon Poodle Bitch for saying so, She does not care what others think of her.

This is why she wears her appreciation for reality television star Bret Michaels on her metaphorical sleeve. This skeevy charmer starred for three seasons on various incarnations of the "Rock of Love" dating franchise, ostensibly looking for true love by putting a bevy of questionable women through their paces. Having them play football in the mud, for example. And dance on strippers poles.

Poodle Bitch would not turn down a tomato slice from Bret Michaels.

These programs were magical, providing as they did a rare insight into the mating rituals of humans.

Of course, Poodle Bitch was being ironic in that previous sentence. Not about the "Rock of Love" programs being magical, because without question they were, but rather about these programs providing insights into the mating rituals of humans. It actually provided insight into the lengths to which human beings will go to achieve a modicum of fame-- or perhaps Poodle Bitch should say notoriety-- on a moderately popular television program.

At the center was Mr. Michaels. While the twenty women swirling about him got smashed on Tequila and fought belligerently about who was really there "for Bret," he remained a calm mixture of bemusement mingled with fascination, with a dash of physical attraction. Poodle Bitch admits that she found Mr. Michaels to be a charismatic center around which to build such a program.

The less said about his "Life as I Know it," featuring the girlfriend that he had even as he was filming those "Rock of Love" programs, the better. (Actually, Poodle Bitch can't even remember "Life as I Know it," couldn't even remember the title of the program until she googled it.)

Anyway. Poodle Bitch is happy to note that Mr. Michaels is apparently a "pet enthusiast," and has just answered her unasked prayer by launching his own line of pet products.
“As a musician who loves animals, I’m thrilled to be collaborating with PetSmart to create the Bret Michaels Pets Rock collection,” said Michaels. “As a dedicated pet owner myself, this is a natural partnership for me, and I can’t wait to unveil the collection. I know my own pets rock, and I wanted to design a line of pet products every bit as fun and cool as they are.”

Poodle Bitch wonders why Mr. Michaels mentioned his being a "musician," yet neglected to remind us of his reality television history. In fact, Poodle Bitch enjoys him so much as a reality show character that she actually watched a few episodes of a show featuring that annoying vituperation Donald Trump, just so that she could see him. That said, she is happy that Mr. Michaels loves animals (humans are animals), but she dislikes his use of the term "pet owner." Poodle Bitch prefers to think of herself as a companion, not a piece of property. She encourages Mr. Michaels to listen to Todd Rundgren's classic song "Property" for a primer on the negative connotations of that word.

The website doesn't as yet have any product information, so Poodle Bitch is left to wonder: Will there be "Doggy Style Thongs"? Tequila and Doritos flavored treats? Stripper Pole Pussy Scratching Posts?

As much as Poodle Bitch admires and appreciates Mr. Michaels, she would prance over his brain-hemorrhoiding body for one piece of chicken breast. That is why she must admit she found the following image from the New York Times so mouthwateringly appealing:

Poodle Bitch had roughly the same reaction to that photo that Mr. Michaels must have when he enters a gynecologist's office.

The accompanying article, about the rise of chicken skin as a savory among certain "foodies," is certainly less provocative than the above image suggests. For one thing, the skin that this small group of cognoscenti is generally cooked to a "crisp," whereas Poodle Bitch notes that the New York Times's "sexy chicken" is raw. Poodle Bitch notes that the small rise in popularity of the chicken skin as a delicacy (is this just another of the New York Times's fake trends, like potbellies and recession beards?) is just another incarnation of the highbrow rehabilitation of what has been traditionally peasant food.

While Poodle Bitch found the photo exciting, a group called PeTA did not.
"When I saw it I just couldn't believe that an editor of The New York Times would find it acceptable," PETA's founder and president Ingrid Newkirk told The Atlantic Wire. "It's downright offensive, not just to people who care about animals but almost to everyone. It's a plucked, beheaded, young chicken in a young pose," she said.
"It's necrophilia. It's not amusing. It's just ghastly and sickly. It's not fitting for The New York Times."

Earlier in this post, Poodle Bitch expressed her distaste for the idea that she might be considered a piece of property, as opposed to a companion. That is because her presence in the lives of her human companions fills a much more solemn and noble purpose than could, say, a table. Poodle Bitch, as all animal companions, provides mental and emotional company that is all out of proportion to the limitations of "property." That term is as insulting to the animal in question as it is to the human expressing it.

At the other end of the spectrum: referring to a chicken as if it were human. Animals are not human. Animals do not want to be human. This is something that even humans who refer to themselves as animal lovers often lose sight of. Poodle Bitch can tell Ms. Newkirk that she was most assuredly not offended by the image of the "plucked" and "beheaded" "young chicken." She was made hungry by it.

That is an animal reaction. And, while animals are not human, humans are still very much animals. Poodle Bitch would venture to guess that Ms. Newkirk is in the minority if, in fact, her mouth did not start watering upon seeing that image.

Poodle Bitch notes that Ms. Newkirk is a humorless hypocrite who once said, "Even if animal research resulted in a cure for AIDS, we'd be against it." This does not apply to the use of IV drips to alleviate the pain of a broken wrist, apparently.
Just as I was setting out to launch my new book, Let’s Have a Dog Party!, I met a wet floor and went splat, neatly snapping the bones in my wrist. Ooh, the pain! Thank goodness for IV drips.

As this post points out, that IV drip for which Ms. Newkirk thanked "goodness" actually owes its existence to animal testing.

Furthermore, in Ms. Newkirk's essay, from which Poodle Bitch quoted above, you can read for yourself how she compares seagulls, monkeys, foxes, and chimpanzees to black humans. Poodle Bitch wonders that anyone takes this woman or her group seriously. She is nothing more than a morally retarded malefactress. And her organization has murdered thousands of companion animals since 1998.
Animal lovers worldwide now have access to more than a decade's worth of evidence showing that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) kills thousands of defenseless pets at its Virginia headquarters. Since 1998, PETA has opted to "put down" 25,840 adoptable dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens instead of finding them "forever homes."

But a photo of a "young chicken in a young pose" is simply beyond the pale, Poodle Bitch notes with dry irony.

Ms. Newkirk's objections to the "young chicken" image that appeared in the New York Times appeared in the same week in which her group PETA released an ad targeting the victim of a shark attack:
PETA is at it again. Just days after a man on a spearfishing trip survived a shark attack near the Gulf of Mexico, PETA launched a controversial campaign portraying a shark chomping a man to death with the tagline "Payback Is Hell, Go Vegan."

"With the recent shark attack in the news, we thought that it was a good time to bring this discussion up that will hopefully save lives, both human and animals," PETA Campaign Manager Ashley Byrne told The Huffington Post.

Here is the ad in question:

Most humans would find it distasteful to use the profound wounding of a man in an attempt to score political points. But then, most humans find it distasteful to put the suffering of AIDS victims below the suffering of a privileged, pampered human woman who slipped and broke her wrist while preparing to promote a book that exploits dogs. In other words, Poodle Bitch notes wearily, this is simply par for the course.

Poodle Bitch also notes that the Disney Channel, something she only watches when she is around human children (which is as infrequently as possible), has ordered a television program about, well, a dog with a blog:
Dog With A Blog centers on 15-year-old Tyler and Kayla, who have just become step-siblings but don’t get along because they’re very different: Tyler is popular, social and gets by on his looks, while Kayla is super smart, socially responsible and despises guys like Tyler. Cue Stu, the new family’s dog. He talks, blogs about his family on his social network, and, with his canine point of view, helps Tyler and Kayla navigate their new sibling status as well as the world of high school. ... Casting is underway for the kids, parents and the dog, who will be real (sans the talking and blogging part, which will most likely be CG animation).

Poodle Bitch wonders why it is that the blogging dog must be saddled with allegedly adorable children who are little more than the stock sit-com characters that populate every single Disney Channel program she has ever had to sit through (Poodle Bitch admits that she has not sat through many). She believes that a blogging dog, offering genuinely witty observations on the world in which she lives, should be more than enough to carry a television program.

Children are a crutch that writers use when they can not fall back upon cleverness.

Poodle Bitch also wonders about the necessity of CGI. Traditional, hand-drawn animation has always been good enough for her.

1 comment:

Natalie on Poodle care said...

I haven't seen this show yet. I guess, I need to check on it first.