March 12th, 2008



Once upon a time, ABC showed some very good cartoons on Saturday mornings.

The genius of Nathan Lane in Teacher's Pet, the perfect deadpan sendup of all those Quinn Martin police/detective shows that was Fillmore!... but if you were to press me really, really hard, I'd say my favorite would be Recess.

Recess was all at once an extended allusion to grade school as Hogan's Heroes style POW camp, with its martial theme music, Detweiler as Hogan, and bumbling egotistical Principal Prickly as Commandant Klink, humor-coated depiction of the vicious cliques and social hierarchy that is public school, and frequent parody of many genres of movie, from spaghetti Western/Sam Peckinaph movie ("El Diablo") to Dirty Harry (a student asks the mysterious substitute teacher "Mr. E" what the "E" stands for, and is told "That information comes at a terrible price. Are you ready to pay it?") to science fiction and many others.

One of the recurring topics was the clique of well-dressed, conventionally pretty girls called "the Ashleys," since they were all named Ashley. They had a catch phrase; when some particularly juicy plot or gossip or whatever arose, they'd chorus, "Scandalous!"

Alas, Recess is no longer on TV, save perhaps late night reruns on the Disney Channel... but it is still remembered. "Ashley" must have been a very common name for baby somewhere around 1988, because they are everywhere waiting tables and behind checkout counters. I make a point of saying "Thank you, Ashley," though irpooh no longer has to fight back laughter... and while watching a children's theater performance of Cinderella that only ran once, a day or so before the Ingersoll Dinner Theater shut down for good, I had to bite my tongue at the line "What shall we call this girl who lives among the ashes and cinders...?" because I could visualize the wicked stepmother saying "Ashley!" and the stepsisters chorusing "Scandalous!"

Well.. today, the Spitzer brouhaha is all over the news, and I followed a link to a New York Times article headlined "Woman at the Center of Governor's Downfall." The article is about the woman an affadavit asserts met, shall we say, with Governor Spitzer (BTW, isn't it odd how reluctant the MSM are to state his party affiliation? Think they'd be as coy were he a Republican?). Her name? Ashley Youmans originally, but she goes by Ashley Alexandra Dupre.


  • Current Music
    "Scandalous," Prince