Tag Archives: Big Bang Theory

My Sheldon Moment

It’s not like I eat at a certain pizza place every week. But I go there often enough that I have an established and happy routine. I know what I’m going to order (two slices, not too crispy around the edges, please). I know what I’m going to drink (a fountain Diet Coke with a splash of regular Coke in it).

And I know where I’m going to sit: I’m going to take the table near the window, to the right of the door. Sure, there have been weeks when I’ve arrived and found someone else occupying my spot. I’ve always handled this circumstance with dignity and grace. I take the high table by the other window. If the same people are still at my table when I leave, I discreetly leave them a card that explains the scale of their error. Simple.

Today, though, I took two steps into the pizza place and I froze. What I saw made no sense whatsoever.

I should mention that the dining area is laid out with a row of high tables on one side and a row of low tables on the other. Well, after years of operation, they’d gone insane and switched them. As if that weren’t bad enough, the refrigerated beverage case had been moved to the other side of the prep counter, next to the fountain dispensers.

I won’t lie to you: it freaked me out a little. I had entered the Bizarro Mirror Universe version of the pizza place. I expected the counterstaff to all be wearing little goatees.

(Actually, many of them already did. But maybe I expected them to be shaved into clear Evil Mirror Universe goatees, and for the girl at the register to goad one of the cooks into battling me to the death with pizza paddles to win her favor.)

I was having a true Sheldon Moment. I couldn’t come up with any credible reason why the sudden change to this familiar layout bothered me. Yet I found myself wanting to tell the person at the register “But that’s not where those tables go. Why would you do that?” in a calm but very firm voice.

Instead, I complimented them on doing something outlandish and bizarre to create an upsetting “Haunted House”-style effect for Halloween. “But seriously: when can I expect you to have everything put back the right way?” I asked. Their answer was noncommittal at best.

My pizza was getting cold. I thought long and hard and ultimately decided that “low table” was more critical to my routine than “…on the right side of the dining area.” I wasn’t happy about it, mind you. But I will continue to give them my patronage. This speaks well of me.

It speaks slightly less-well of me that I posted an anonymous one-star review to Yelp entitled “The tables are now completely in the wrong places. Why would they even do that?” as soon as I got home.

Amazon Advent Calendar, Day 01: “The Big Bang Theory Theme”

(Text link: Big Bang Theory Theme)

Happy Advent Sunday! And you’re all good Catholics, so of course you understood that the Amazon Advent Calendar wouldn’t begin until today.

But if we’re all good Catholics, then we must be wondering why I’m abusing this season to promote the enjoyment of pagan rhythms while steering filthy luchre into my Amazon Associates coffers. Point taken.

I shall make up for this disrespectful gesture by opening the Advent Calendar with a tribute to another good Catholic: Monsignor Georges Henri Joseph Édouard Lemaître, the priest who first proposed the theory for the origins of the Universe that would later be called the Big Bang Theory.

He failed to accompany his Theory with a peppy theme song. So I guess they don’t teach you everything at seminary.

Yes, I am quite the nut for this show. It’s as if Chuck Lorre dropped my photo onto a CBS programming executive’s desk and announced “We’re going to make a show that THIS guy will absolutely love.”

The executive pulled the photo closer and examined it.

He was skeptical.

“Does THIS guy buy detergent, snow tires, and movie tickets?” he asked.

“Well, THIS guy finds it simpler to just buy more underwear than do laundry. He knows that Alexei Leonov was supposed to be the first Russian to walk on the moon, but has no idea that there’s more than one kind of tire. And he’s more likely to download a torrent than go to a movie theater,” Lorre replied. “But yes, he tends to spend lot of money on crap he doesn’t need. Crap which can indeed be advertised through the medium of television.”

There are plenty of sitcoms that I like a lot. But even “The Office” delivers more of a “smile and chuckle” sort of funny. Week after week, “The Big Bang Theory” leaves me barking.

Loudly.

I’ve said it before, but I haven’t found a better way to explain the show: “The Big Bang Theory” exists at the precise intersection between “laughing with me” and “laughing at me.”

I have to think that the first band that Chuck Lorre Productions approached for the theme song was They Might Be Giants. Wouldn’t they be the go-to band for a show about four ultrageeks who work at Caltech?

Instead, the theme is written and performed by Barenaked Ladies. It’s hard to imagine that TMBG or anybody else could have done any better. It’s snappy, it’s peppy, the science in the lyrics checks out, and as you step out into sub-freezing weather this winter you will react as I do. Unbidden, you will recall the line

The bipeds stood up straight, the dinosaurs all met their fate

They tried to leave but they were late and they all died

(They froze their asses off!)

And you’ll still be freezing. But at least you’ll be humming a snappy, peppy little tune.

This track is also available on The iTunes Store. But if you buy it there, I won’t receive a kickback from Amazon. I also have it on good authority that one random Antarctic penguin will spontaneously molt and die.