The idea of a dinner party is enough to make me grab the toaster and run for the shower in an effort to ride the sweet lightning into the great beyond. It's me. I know this. I have no desire to sit and eat with friends and discuss our children or politics or religion or our children getting touched by religious politicians. I have, over the years, created some amazing excuses to get out of these gatherings. But, every so often, I come up blank and end up staring at the invitee like a dead fish when asked to arrive around 6 with a dessert.
A few days ago, such an event happened. When asked to come over I froze like I had just seen Margret Thatcher nude which, allowed my friend to throw a net over me like I was a tuna and reel me into a “Yes, I'm looking forward to it. I can think of nothing I'd rather do.” I would more look forward to a heart attack or a piece of space junk landing on my head as I was sitting in the garden. And on a list of things I'd rather do, training a mule to kick me in the groin seems like a nice alternative.
As the day of the dinner arrived and God refused to answer my prayers of killing me in my sleep, I resigned myself to the fact that I was simple going to have to take the bullet. I would trade my normal routine of sipping some rye whiskey in the back yard for making pleasant conversation about growing old and how children are adorable pieces of God’s daisy chain.
During the dinner, someone, I really have no idea what the man’s name was, deviated from the normal conversation and mentioned that if the power grid in America were to be attacked by terrorist, America would quickly become subservient to third world nations because they already know how to live without power and Facebook updates. My ears perked up at this as I realized that if I were to be forced to live off the land due to a power failure, I'd be dead in 4 hours. There would be no hope for me. I simply cannot look into Bambi's eyes and shoot. Once I used up the meat in the freezer it would be suicide for me. I wouldn’t even be able to save myself by becoming a vegetarian, because I have no concept of growing anything. I can't even grow my fingernails right.
All of this discussion got me thinking though. The third world countries that will rise up and become our masters are going to have the same pressing problem we have; Who is going to replace Paul McCartney when he dies. He is currently the go-to guy when you have a big event like the Olympics or the opening of a new arena or the opening of a super market or a dinner party. Paul has been popping up in more places than acne on a teenage fry cook. Paul is very much like a big pair of underpants is his ability to be everywhere at once and, truth be told, there is actually no one to replace him when his number is called.
This, to me, is a sign that music has gone downhill since the Beatles. Who among today’s top acts is going to be around 50 years from now to open the Olympics? Lady Ga Ga? Doubtful as she'll be an old lady and no one wants to see old ladies dancing across a stage. Justin Bieber? Nope. He's Canadian which means he'll die falling through the thin pond ice during an ice fishing holiday. Lil' Wayne? No. He'll be dead from ink poisoning. Ladies and Gentleman, we are screwed.
I think now is the time for the world to unite and throw endless sacks of cash into cloning. Sir Paul is all we have and unless we want to have the Dave Matthews Band showing up everywhere we better get this ball rolling. If we are successful at this, we could make enough Sir Paul's so every family could have one. So then, when the power grid gets bombed, we can simple have Paul sing and usher us into a nice Golden Slumber until someone in the third world figures out how to reinvent a light switch.
Though, if I'm honest, I can't help thinking that there indeed would be a bright spot to the power grid going down. I would be able to sleep through my next dinner party without anyone knowing. Or, I suppose I could just send a Paul McCartney in my place.
The views in this Commentary are not the views of the normal work-a-day stiffs whose thoughts never deviate from the straight line on which they will be someday be thrown off like a Flying Wallenda in a windstorm.