Monday, March 25, 2013

The Godfather Parker and Pretty Boy: The Movie


The Story So Far: Don Parker has increasingly been feeling the ravages of time. His back hurts, his gout is acting up and his prostate is the size of Mary Lou Retton, and performing better backflips. He checks it constantly with his thumb. Don Parker’s power is waning, his once indomitable empire is challenged on every front, his influence is still powerful yet he wields it clumsily now, bestowing gifts of 100 points willy-nilly where once he bestowed fear and envy. Don Parker is used to being feared and revered, but now the talk is only of his age and weakness—he feels the wolves nipping at his heels, trying to separate him from the rest of his pack of critics because he is one of the old and infirm; and though they are all old and infirm, it’s more fun to take down the one who was always the most powerful. Plus, he’s the only one with any meat on his bones.

Don Parker has recently told his Family that he is selling his empire to an Asian Family. The Family is in an uproar. Things are made worse when he hands the reins over to the only woman in the Family, Donna Lisa “The Blowfish” Peretti-Brown. This is no business for a woman. The Parker Family fortune is based on the 100-Point Scale; most women don’t like scales. The Family sees it as a mistake. On top of that, a year earlier, Don Parker had been forced to make one of the Family, Jay “The Walrus” Miller, disappear. “The Walrus” got caught with his hand in someone else’s till, and Don Parker didn’t like it. “The Walrus” begged, he even blubbered (blubber is how he got his nickname), but Don Parker had no choice. In a powerful and poignant scene, Don Parker kisses “The Walrus” on the lips. “86,” he whispers to “The Walrus,” whose face shows he recognizes it’s not a score.

But now Don Parker’s favorite son, Antonio “Pretty Boy” Galloni, wants out of the Family. Don Parker had personally groomed “Pretty Boy” Tony to be his ultimate replacement, the new Don of the Parker Empire. But the impeccably mannered, yet headstrong and temperamental, Galloni doesn’t want to work for “The Blowfish” and her shady Asian overlords. He intends to leave, and take the Family secrets with him. As the scene opens, we are in Don Parker’s office in Monkton. Don Parker sits behind his desk, the head of “The Walrus” is beautifully stuffed and mounted on the wall behind him, with what appear to be the testicles of an M.W. dangling from his mouth. A plaque beneath says, “Miller Teabagging Campo.” Next to Miller’s head is a crucifix. It’s “The Walrus” and the Carpenter. Antonio “Pretty Boy” Galloni enters. Don Parker stays seated.

Don Parker:  Come in, Pretty Boy, come in. It’s nice to see you. How’s your wife? I’d stand up to greet you, Tony, but my back hurts from carrying Bordeaux all these years.

“Pretty Boy”:  My wife is good, Don Parker. She asks for you. She wants to know when  you’ll grace us with a visit.

DP:  Soon, I hope, Tony, soon. (He pauses.) Does she know about your decision to leave the Family?

PB (Tony is clearly shocked Don Parker knows of his plans to leave.) No, I… I haven’t told anyone. I wanted to speak to you first, Godfather. How did you know?

DP:  I know you like I would know my own son, my own flesh and blood. I gave you life, Tony, I made you somebody. I gave you money and power and the knowledge to abuse it. And this is how you thank me? (He glances over his shoulder at “The Walrus.”) You take everything and just walk away? Is this how you show your gratitude to me, and to the Family?

PB(humbly) Godfather, I always told you that I wouldn’t do contracts. Didn’t I? Didn’t I always say, “I don’t do contracts?”

DP(quietly) You come to me, how many years ago now, Tony, three? And you’re tired of being nobody, your little publication, you’ll excuse me, it’s shit. Twelve guys and a chimp read it, and the chimp wants a discount because he’s a blogger. So I give you a real job, I hand you my name and my reputation, I teach you how to use the 100 Point Scale the way a man uses the 100 Point Scale—like you use your salami on a woman, Tony. It’s the tip that matters. 95 to 100, the tip, that’s what gets you in. In return for all that I’ve given you, Tony, you won’t do a contract? I’m the Don of this Family. If I say contract, you do a contract.

PB(deliberately) I cannot work for “The Blowfish.” This was never a part of our Family, Godfather. (now angrily) You sold the Family! You sold it and took all the money. And then you ask me to work for some Asians and a woman? Like I’m some miserable Napa Valley winemaker? No, Godfather, I have my pride. Why couldn’t you have made one of the other family members Don?

DP:  Who, Tony, I ask you, who? David “The Windbag” Schildknecht? Mark “The Pretender” Squires? Neal “Buttkiss” Martin? Come on, Tony, it was supposed to be you. Don Antonio. But you couldn’t wait, you couldn’t just sign a contract and wait until I die. No, you had to try and kill your Father, betray me, betray the entire family. For what? Another of your shit publications? I know you, Tony, I knew you would try to leave. So I gave my title to “The Blowfish.” To teach you.

PB(A long pause, Tony trying to stared down Don Parker.)  I’m leaving, Godfather. I ask you for your blessings.

DP(he is thoughtful) If you go, Tony, you must not take anything of the Family with you. You must not betray any of our secrets, our codes—the Family business stays here. This you must swear to me on your life, on your wife’s life.

PB:  But I must use the 100 Point Scale. That is no secret, Godfather. Everyone uses the Scale, it is not yours.

DP:  I will not have you abuse it!

PB:  Abuse it?! You’re the one who abuses it, Don Parker! Everyone, all the other families, the Strums, the Shankens, they’re all talking about your abuse of the Scale. They want to destroy you, Godfather. But, no, you’re smarter than they are. You’re destroying yourself first. Handing out 100 point scores like they’re Cuban cigars to celebrate that you’ve screwed another wine region.

DP:  It was you, Pretty Boy, who didn’t hand them out often enough. You disappointed me, Tony. In front of everyone, you insulted me. Lowered my scores, MY SCORES!, on wineries I made rich and famous. You made me a laughingstock. Made me look like a tired, bloated old man. And now this. You leave me, my lifetime of work paving a path for you, my money lining your pockets, my fame the only light your name has, and you leave me. Go, Tony, never darken my door again. I’ll have your head up there with The Walrus if you do.

PB:  I take my work with me, Don Parker. It was always mine. It was never yours. If you try to take it from me, I’ll give it away, and with it, all your secrets.

DP(wearily) Fine, Tony. No one gives a crap about Sonoma, or your scores for Sonoma. Even I barely showed my face there. Farmers, they’re just ignorant farmers. It’s Burgundy all over again. (He sits up straighter. There’s a long pause.) I want you to know I wish you the best of luck, Antonio. Come here.

(Tony walks over behind the desk. Don Parker slowly rises. He looks at him squarely in the eyes. Tony lowers his, and Don Parker gently kisses him on the lips.) 

DP:  Goodbye, Antonio.

(The music swells, Pretty Boy leaves, a look of satisfaction on his face. And as the next scene opens, we see Pretty Boy in bed, the sheets covered in blood. Tony awakens, feels and smells the blood. He begins to panic, his breathing accelerates, and when he throws the sheets aside we see the bloody head of James Suckling, his mouth wide open and his eyes bulging, as in real life.

Antonio screams.)



32 comments:

Mike Dunne said...

Brilliant, again...

Daniel said...

you should have told us to cue up the soundtrack...

happy monday

Francly Speaking said...

Who sleeps with the blow-fish?

Marcia Macomber said...

Superb!

Quizicat said...

Excellent!
'and the chimp wants a discount..'
I love it. I laughed, I cried, I crapped myself. (Sorry TMI)

george kaplan said...

Flat- out Fabulous! Can't wait to see who you cast as "Hyman Roth"( it seems like as easy call to me
)

David Fish said...

thanks for sharing the secrets of
"La Vina Nostra"...

Thomas said...

The list of nicknames is the highlight, especially "The Pretender."

wineknurd said...

In the dynamics of heterosexual relations human males are often confronted by human females reluctant to engage in coitus. In such situations a human male may initiate a game called "Just the tip", which represents a suggested compromise in the age old battle of the sexes. In a typical game of "Just the tip" it will be verbally agreed that the male
may penetrate his partner's vagina, but with stipulation that his may only insert the glans or "tip" of his penis.

The female payoff is that she may avoid both physical pain and/or social ostracism, while the male enjoys limited coitus. In many cases, it is documented that upon insertion a formally reluctant female may become to open to allowing the male other sexual largesse; hence the games popularity.

-Wineknurd (via urban dictionary)

Andy Perdue said...

It's rare that a comment is more disturbing than the blog post, but Wineknurd managed it. Congrats!

Dean Tudor said...

Make the movie with Vincent Price, Ray Milland and Peter Lorre...oh, they're dead...sorry...

Unknown said...

Makes sense, Parker's a zombie.

Bill Klapp said...

The stuffs of legends, delivered to Hosey by two legends in their own minds...

Jack Bulkin said...

Brilliant Hosey. I can't wait to see The Godfather's accolades on his lifeless Wine Board.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Hey Gang,
Thanks for all the kind responses to my Godfather post. It is much appreciated.

Whenever some sort of scandal hits the wine biz, be it Parker or Jay Miller or Natalie, I start to get emails. Though it feels almost oppressive, I try to take it as flattery. Countless bloggers express their opinions, the wine chat rooms light up, but little is said in an interesting way. I spent a day or two with the Galloni situation in my subconscious (barely room in there for so many damned egos, especially mine) but, truthfully, I didn't expect to come up with anything suitably satiric or funny. Some will say I didn't. However, when the thought of Parker in the great Brando role leapt into my mind, I thought I'd give it a shot. From that premise, overworked as it is, I let my HoseMaster voice take it where it wanted to.

My blog hits have lit up from Wineberserkers--thanks, Bill--and also from other chat rooms. But nothing from eBob, which is interesting. Don't care, just interesting.

I've been saying this for five years now--there's nothing new, genuinely new, to say about wine or the wine business. But the joy for me is to try and find an entertaining, satiric, silly way to approach old topics. I can only hope I succeed more than mere randomness would allow.

Cris Whetstone said...

"...my back hurts from carrying Bordeaux all these years." - bwahaha!

Glad you are getting the traffic you deserve.

Jack Bulkin said...

Hosey, I would post this brilliance on EBOB but the Philly Mohel has been slicing the foreskin from of any conscientious objector err non Parker lemming about this sorid tale. Figures Philly, GodFather bingo.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Cris,
Oh, I get lots of traffic most of the time, but anything Parker, or anything scandal, and the traffic gets busier.

Jack,
I think it was mostly Bill Klapp who used to link to me on eBob, but he's no longer a subscriber (I believe). It's OK, most of the eBob guys are also on Wineberserkers, so they see it anyway.

And, besides, Mr. Parker always praises me, even when I lampoon him, so I was just fishing for a 100 point score.

Dean Tudor said...

Ron, I look forward to your comments and story angles for the wine fraud trial finally unfolding. Pitting one current billionaire (Koch) against a former billionaire. As a wine writer in Canada said: "If you’re interested in Narcissistic psychopathology, this case is a field day. Watch the grandiose gullible guys circling each other in a desperate effort to preserve their sense of special entitlement. (Think of scorpions in a jar…)"

Over to you...

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/mar/24/wine-fraud-lawsuit-billionaire-bill-koch


Thomas said...

Dean:

Ron is going to too busy to cover the trial--it's annual wine blogger award time, which has given scores of wine bloggers something to write about this week.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Dean,
It was my friend Chris Kassel over at Intoxreport who memorably called the billionaire pursuing his case a "Koch sucker." I can't top that. Chris is who I read when I want to laugh--all the jokes here I see coming.

Thomas,
I'll kindly ask you to refer to them as "The Poodles" so I won't get confused. And I'm sure that there is lots of buzz and aspiration and self-absorption going on. More and more, I stay away from the blogger nation. Too much like high school for my taste. With any luck, I won't get nominated.

Thomas said...

Ron:

One of my first impressions of the blogosphere as well as wine forum sites was the image of a schoolyard, complete with bullies, wannabes, and "top of the class" kids who excelled at grades and insults but couldn't tie their own shoes and couldn't make friends either.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

Thomas,
Pretty clear where I fall in that schoolyard pantheon...yes, I wear loafers.

Thomas said...

...with a penny in them?

Samantha Dugan said...

Oh crud, wonder which one I am...I'm guessing one of those kids that no one cool, like you cats, talked to...just left me in the lab playing with my beakers and talking to myself. Humpf.
I still love you though!

wineknurd said...

I was posting juice box tasting notes on lunchboxtracker.com during recess. "Bright cherry with hints of earth. Must have dropped my straw on the playground again".

-'Knurd

Ron Washam, HMW said...

My Gorgeous Samantha,
I see you more as the troublemaker kid, the cute girl with that perfect streak of nasty you'd do anything for and know you'll regret. The one who volunteers to play Doctor with you but once you drop your pants around your ankles walks away laughing. Wanna play?

I love you too!

Wineknurd,
On this playground, whatever you do, don't bend over to pick it up.

Samantha Dugan said...

Ron My Love,
Nice offer, can I still play with my beakers?

gabe said...

i call 'kid that eats paste'!

Samantha Dugan said...

I wanna keep Gabe...

wineknurd said...

Overheard at Wineknurd's weekly juice box tasting on the playground:

Gabe- This juice smells like glue!

Sam- Quit being a wanker! Non-douche rule #3 is to remove all paste from your hands before tasting! And mind the schmeg!

Ron- Hands Sam a note that says: "'Knurd is a poodle. Do you like me? Check yes or no".

Thomas said...

I have the luxury of being among the few whose standard poodle not only walks backwards but also likes to do it. But like most poodles, he cannot write coherently and he just loves terrorizing smaller dogs, especially when they are all confined behind a chain link fence.