Friday, April 8, 2011

Charlie Sheen, Peter Murphy, and the Book of Mormon: Smell the Lamb

•As if my appearance at the hellfire club-like Dionysium in Austin two days ago weren’t epic enough, tonight – while I’m still safely away in Texas – Manhattan is scheduled to be visited by Charlie Sheen’s tour, My Violent Torpedo of Truth.  (Next stop, fears Ali Kokmen, Dr. Drew’s Celebrity Rehab.)

•Speaking of odd showmen, last weekend I saw (vegan, Muslim-convert, Turkey-dwelling, goth, and Elric of Melnibone lookalike) Peter Murphy in concert yet again, and – after a gothy stop at Shade Bar, where I was not the only person from the Murphy concert, it turned out – I finally found his song “Cuts You Up” on a karaoke playlist, completing a years-long quest.  The performance went well and proved it’s the song I was born to karaokeize, to my great relief, complete with congratulatory high-fives from the males and extra female eye contact.  This is as it should be.

•I don’t know if Murphy gets grief over being a Muslim (sometimes people bend over backwards not to criticize Muslims, even when they kill people, as my friend Mollie Ziegler Hemingway notes here), but they certainly spend a lot of time mocking Mormons (why not every other sect with equal contempt, is my atheist attitude?), so I was cautious about embracing the Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s Book of Mormon comedy musical (which I saw with a Christian Science adherent, come to think of it – and I could do a comedy about that). 

In the end, though, I think it was actually too tame (someone told me, with worry, that Mormon tourists aren’t even offended by it).  There were brief tableaux of the core Mormon stories, but most of it (much like the film Orgazmo before it) just used the religious naifs for a fish-out-of-water story (missionaries in Uganda) that could have been told using almost any faith. 

The actual Book of Mormon, come to think of it, has something in common with They Live, a movie I talked about in my blog entry two days ago: magic glasses that reveal the true meaning of texts.

•Another fish-out-of-water story could be told about one of my favorite vegan acquaintances, who is not here in Austin, where she used to live, surrounded by BBQ.  Surrounded.  I wonder how many times Peter Murphy has said in Turkish, “No lamb for me, thanks.”  Actually, if he were feeling contrarian, a gothy song called “Eat the Lamb” could be nicely menacing.  Perhaps “Smell the Lamb.”  Ah, now there’s a 1991-ish song idea I can bat around with my Brown peeps at next month’s reunion.  

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