20 April 2007

What do Alec Baldwin and Penny's Mother from Good Times Have in Common?

By now, you've heard that Alec Baldwin got his Schweaty balls all in a knot and unleashed a psychotic voicemail rant on his 11-year-old daughter, calling her "a rude, thoughtless little pig" and threatening to fly across the country to "straighten her ass out." Yikes.

Alec Baldwin, welcome to the Society of Loose Cannons. Other celebrated members of the SLC include Michael Richards, Mel Gibson and others driven to rage by the limitations imposed upon them by black people, Jews and elementary school children. Baldwin issued a weak, somewhat arrogant statement acknowledging that he should've used "different language while parenting his child." So this was just a "parenting issue?" He must've attended the Leona Gordon School of Parenting then because calling your own child a pig is not a flawed parenting style, it's psychological abuse. Alec, frustration comes standard with being a parent. You've got to control yourself, man. Being a frustrated parent means walking out to the back porch, closing the door behind you and screaming "OH MY FUCKING GOD PLEASE SHUT THE FUCK UP" into a balled-up hand towel. So I've heard. You are a total ass.

Not that Kim Basinger is any better. She's an angry old mess who's only instigated the situation further. Poor Ireland is going to need a team of therapists before she's 20. Run away, child! Join the circus or find some Willona Woods-type savior to adopt you.

UPDATE: Baldwin's belligerent rant has been mashed up with the Ramones --you can download it as a ringtone at Cellytown. It's wrong, but kind of funny.


MLXC said...

They kept playing that tape over and over again on the radio Friday. And every time I commanded my son to be quiet so that I coud hear exactly what he was saying.

What a whack job.

It was so over the top, it almost seemed like he was "acting."

KJ said...

No kidding. I've always loved Alec Baldwin. This whole thing hurts me.

Question: Did you get my Good Times reference? James told me earlier that this posting was likely so "dated and obscure" that "nobody will get it."

WE get it. But does anyone else? I'm sure WMD or T-Bag get it but I need to know.

sb said...

I heard that Kim Basinger was the one that publicized this voice message. If she did, she's no better. In fact, she's downright wrong. This VM is all over the place now, and the one that will really suffer is a 12 (or 11) year old girl. How embarrassing is that for a kid at that age? Mommy's just as coo-koo as daddy. Still love Baldwin in The Departed though.

Anonymous said...

If it nips her becoming a crystal-meth popping Nut-a la Britney and Lindsay- it's great. "Straighten your ass out" may be awkward to hear and AB voice is severe, but the sentiment is apt.

KJ said...

To me it was the context and rage which with he said it. It sounded like he was going to straighten her ass out Jack Torrance-style. Let’s not forget the child is 11. There’s no excuse to completely lose your shit like that on an 11 year old, regardless of your good intentions or sentiment.

Also, I think it’s possible to exercise tough love without use of the word “pig.” Remarks like that can be just as corrosive to a young girl’s soul as the laissez-faire parent (Basinger) who lets you do whatever you want. She could just as easily go off on a meth-fueled binge because “daddy thinks I’m a pig.” I still think the child needs to run away b/c she is certainly on the fast track to Lohan-land with these two narcissists at the helm.

lpd said...

KJ: I DID catch your "Good Times" reference! Janet Jackson would be proud.

Very bummed that Baldwin, the actor who portrays my favorite modern tv character on 30 Rock, is capable of such a thing. Take a breather before you call your kid and rip her apart, man. Terrible.

I happened to catch Tom Petty's video for "Last Dance with MaryJane" this weekend (Sidebar: anyone else watch the cable station called The Tube? They play a random selection of music videos, past and present, sans commercials or reality tv shows. I dig it...). Bassinger's character in that video is how I imagine she lives her life: dead inside, letting somebody else drag her through the motions of life. Ireland should take her trust fund, send herself to boarding school in Europe and screen her calls.

KJ said...

LPD-I used to love that video. What station is this Tube you speak of? And more important, can I get it on DirectTV?

That said, I think I have a "Free Ireland" pin lying around from an unsettling fundraiser I attended in Southie many years ago. I'll recycle it and start a movement (sort of like the "Free Katie" campaign of 2005)

Anonymous said...

Why worry about the girl? If she becomes screwed up, drinks or does drugs, and then comes crashing down it will make for great headlines (Anna Nicole Smith "Dead") or speculation ("who'll be the first celebrity to die") or waggish, campy remarks about her untimely departure on the PU. Love the child, but once they hit 20 and wear bad shoes or date cheesy guy, they're on their own.

KJ said...

LOL-That’s a great point.

There’d be little reason to get out of bed in the morning without all this nonsense.

Luckily, Hollywood is breeding a nice farm team of fuck-ups to validate our continued existence.

KJ said...

BTW-I hope you're not being saracastic about my Anna Nicole "DEAD" headline. I consider it my finest to date.

Alex said...

Presuming this results in some sort of anger rehab, I'd like to note that I nailed the Jan 25 quizzilla on which celeb will next land in rehab:


If there's a prize please let me know

KJ said...

Alex-I'll send you a canned ham. Maybe I'll have some pointy universe coffee mugs made for future quizzilla prizes.

KJ said...

Although I don't entirely agree with it, I wanted to share this fantastic article on the Baldwin saga from Salon today. I think Code Red and Anonymous-Bukowski will be down with it.

This little piggy
With Alec Baldwin's latest travails, the world wonders, "What's so wrong about name-calling, stupid?"

By Heather Havrilevsky

April 25, 2007 |

This little piggy went to a bunch of great parties,

This little piggy stayed home.

This little piggy had a new hit sitcom on NBC,

This little piggy had none.

This rude, thoughtless little piggy cried, "Wee wee wee!" all the way to her publicist's office.

Last week, thanks to a voice mail Alec Baldwin left for his 11-year-old daughter, Ireland, leaked to TMZ.com, in which he calls her a "rude, thoughtless little pig" we learned three things: 1) Alec Baldwin can be a real dick sometimes, 2) his ex-wife, Kim Basinger, might possibly be the sort of nightmare parent who would leak private conversations to the press at her daughter's expense, and 3) name-calling is officially out of style.

While Basinger's publicist told journalists that "the voice mail speaks for itself," it's clear that there's more than one rude, thoughtless little pig in this scenario. Meanwhile, those of us who were raised by hotheads (who were, in turn, raised by wolves) scratched our heads and asked ourselves, "What's so wrong with name-calling?"

Time was when you could call your kid a lazy shit or a stupid jerk and get away with it. Remember those days? You know, back before the immensely powerful toddler lobby took over Washington and people became enlightened and informed and started treating their filthy little rug rats like foreign dignitaries. "Rude, thoughtless little pig" was mild talk in my family, the kind of thing you might hear when you forgot to take out the trash. For a few years when my older brother was in high school and looked just like Funky Winkerbean, my dad couldn't address him without using the word "weirdo," as in "Stop being such a weirdo and play a sport or something." The summer I turned 13 and started sporting fake Ray-Bans and listening to Blondie's "Parallel Lines" on a continuous loop in my Walkman, my dad referred to me as a "shallow dummy" at least as often as he said my name. If there were an army of spies with camera phones back then, we would've been ripped straight from the arms of our hotheaded parents and dropped into the nearest foster home before we were even potty trained.

I had a boyfriend whose father basically never called him anything but "little fucker" for most of his childhood, so I know I'm not the only one who was called names on a regular basis. Did it erode our self-esteem? Clearly not, since here I am, overconfident enough to be bloviating in these pages.

In the old days, when you used mean words instead of your fists, it was considered a triumph. The big debate among my mom's friends focused on whether or not it was really fair to hit someone else's kid on the ass with a wooden spoon or a belt when he did something bad. Spanking wasn't shameful back then, it was an important job that you needed tools to perform.

These days, you're not even allowed to use adjectives that might insinuate that a child is anything less than perfect in every way. A friend's kid came home from drama class one day complaining that the teacher had called him an idiot. My friend didn't like that. "What was he doing?" I asked. Turns out that, during an improv exercise, he was loudly insulting the actors' choices. An understandable reaction to bad improv, to be sure, but one that, if indulged, would basically render the whole class mute with self-consciousness. The instructor thought it better to hurl a well-timed insult, saving the other students from shame by shaming the idiot.

That seems like an important lesson for any kid, to me: If you don't want to be called an idiot, sometimes you have to stop acting like one. But today, everyone agrees that merely uttering these words is pure evil, that kids will always take their hotheaded parents' remarks personally, every single time, and their sweet little natures will be eaten away and they'll turn hard and mean and full of spite. You know, like me.

But if everyone is right about this new no-name-calling trend, you'd assume that our playgrounds would be filled with patient, amicable darlings. Instead, all I see are the same rude, thoughtless little pigs who were always there, still reenacting scenes from "Lord of the Flies." Only these days, the savages smack their own parents in the face, and all their moms and dads do is whisper diplomatic tomes on the pros and cons of maybe, possibly considering putting down that sharpened stick and thinking about possibly, maybe trying to resist the very natural and normal urge to impale that poor kid over there with it.

What happened to the furious mom who would appear out of nowhere and wrench her little punk's arm ruthlessly, yanking him out of his strike position and back to the sidelines for some stinging words and a few solid swats? The sharpened stick would be left in the dust by the swing set, and Piggy and Ralph would be free to roam the playground without fearing for their lives henceforth.

I don't mind that spanking is no longer considered a good time, but honestly, would it really kill anyone to hear "Stop it, stupid!" once or twice? How about "Quit it, you big jerk!"? OK, "Quit acting like a big jerk!" right? Because that way the kid isn't necessarily a jerk, he's just acting like one?

I don't know. Where's the fun in mincing words? Calling people mean names is like smoking -- first you can't do it at work, then you can't do it in public spaces. Now you're not even allowed to do it in e-mails or at sushi restaurants or even in the privacy of your own home, even though everyone there knows you well enough to know that you're just a temperamental dick. You'd think that if you grew up the way most of our parents did, raised by the so-called Greatest Generation who regularly got drunk and threw plates at their kids' heads, you'd have earned the right to utter a few choice, nasty words every now and then.

Sure, we all cringe when we overhear bad parents berating their children in ways that it's pretty clear will erode their self-esteem, and maybe even impede their ability to get out of bed in the morning for the rest of their lives. I'm not talking about those freaks, I'm talking about reasonably happy, witty, intelligent, mean-spirited hotheads. Remember when all parents fit that description, and they all went around chain-smoking and swilling coffee and eating cherry pie and complaining about their spouses and stopping for half a second to say something sort of biting and harsh to their kids? I miss them, damn it! When I hear Alec Baldwin's voice mail, I don't feel disturbed, I feel nostalgic for the good old days, when everyone was free to be a huge asshole from time to time without fearing expensive and lengthy litigation.

And anyway, if name-calling is so awful, how did my generation turn out to be so charming and self-confident and wise and omniscient? Oh, you don't think I'm charming? You don't think I'm omniscient? Fine, I'll prove it right now by reading your mind...

You're thinking, "I can't wait to read the letters for this one."

Code Red said...

You were right, KJ...LOVE it! God help me if I ever have children. DYS will have me on speed-dial...and all because my neighbors will report me after doing something like...calling my kid a jackass (OK, it would probably be more like "f$cking jackass")for breaking his arm after he dove 15 feet off the deck into a pile of leaves. I'll be labeled unfit and he'll be off to foster care.

KJ said...

Thought you'd appreciate that. And, Annie, if your mothering of Baron is any indication of how you'd be as a parent, DYS will be dropping off foster kids at YOUR house, not the other way around.