SW: *shoves plushie microbes off bar stool* Don’t mind the mess. Just giving a lecture on STDs and thought I’d use a visual aid.
JB: That’s far more appropriate than the one I’d end up using. If the students aren’t depressed or nauseated, you’re not doing it right.
SW: I always tell my students syphilis is so much cuter when it’s all cute and cuddly. Anyway, tell us about yourself.
JB: I’ve been writing for a large chunk of my life – the earliest thing I can remember having someone write for me was some weird mishmash of Star Trek: The Next Generation and my life, which meant it was outstandingly dumb. I spent many years writing and directing plays, which is actually where Project Northwoods saw its earliest iteration. When I’m not doing stuff like that, I’m helping students at the campus’s Writing Center or teaching a class on ethnicity and gender in American media throughout history. It sounds boring, but it’s called Villainy, Sex, and Bloodbursts – I thought that was far more effective at getting my point across.
SW: When I heard you were from Milwaukee, I immediately thought of this movie:
~~Wayne Campbell: So, do you come to Milwaukee often?
~~Alice Cooper: Well, I’m a regular visitor here, but Milwaukee has certainly had its share of visitors. The French missionaries and explorers were coming here as early as the late 1600s to trade with the Native Americans.
~~Pete: In fact, isn’t “Milwaukee” an Indian name?
~~Alice Cooper: Yes, Pete, it is. Actually it’s pronounced “mill-e-wah-que” which is Algonquin for “the good land.”
~~Wayne Campbell: I was not aware of that.
~~Alice Cooper: I think one of the most interesting things about Milwaukee is that it’s the only American city to elect three Socialist mayors.
~~Wayne Campbell: [to the camera] Does this guy know how to party or what?
*laughter* Dang funny movie, am I right?
JB: I saw Wayne’s World when it was in theaters, but I can’t for the life of me tell you what happened. I really don’t think I had the necessary context for anything to leave any significant mark on me. I have seen this clip quite a bit, though. I really feel for Alice Cooper in this scene. I mean, here this guy is, trying to educate someone on the oft-ignored leftist tradition in Milwaukee, and the response is a sarcastic “Woah, slow down there, party animal.” I can’t tell you how much this happens to me.
Well, if someone every actually invited me to parties. I… I still have to wait for that one. But once it happens, you bet I’ll be spurned.
SW: I am always fascinated with some of the crazy laws that used to exist (and sometimes still do) in various states and cities. Did you know that in Wisconsin if it’s after 3:00 a.m., you have to send a rocket signal in the air after every mile you drive? Then wait a minute for a response. This law has since been repealed. I mean, can you imagine??!!??
JB: It was probably put there by the signal flare industry. Big Starburst, we call them. Fat cats have had their hands in Wisconsin’s politics for too damn long if you ask me.
Realistically though, I’d like to think this was some sad state senator’s life goal. He had built his entire career around this moment, wrote a passionate speech about it, and was all set to get in front of his peers – heart pounding in his chest – and defend it at the first sign of resistance. Instead, they all just kind of shrug and go “Whatever,” before passing the bill. You know he was just so proud of himself and every night for the rest of his life he talks about how he made the streets of the Midwest a little safer. Every moment he can, he brings it up, embellishing it every time, until he basically gave such a rousing speech that his opponents tearfully gave in to thunderous applause.
But we would know the truth, and we would hate him for it every damn time we had to load a flare into our blackened flare guns.
SW: Inquiring minds want to know more about this thing called Project Northwoods. Sounds very Jack Bauer-esque.
JB: Project Northwoods follows, Arthur Lovelass, a wannabe villain who is desperate to show up his popular super hero father. Unfortunately, he’s too good at being a potential bad guy and they won’t license him because of it. On top of that, one of his roommates hates him and his sister refuses to talk to him. In a moment of self-pity, he manages to guilt his best friend into joining him in an act of petty vandalism. This puts them in the precarious position of being partial witnesses to a crime that puts the most dangerous super hero in the city on the warpath to find answers at any cost.
SW: Totally have this book on my TBR list! That cover is seriously awesome! :D
SW: I happen to know that you’re as big a fan of Michael Biehn, Blessed be His Name, as I am. And I love that we have this super awesome club devoted to all things Biehn: #BiehnClub
I still say we need a handshake or interpretive dance or something…
JB: Interpretive dance is the best way to show your love and support of Michael Biehn, may he bless every movement with his gravely voice of greatness!
SW: Gravely Voice of Greatness… I think we just found our club motto!!!! I’ll get to work on a banner to hangup for club meetings. We gotta work on our slick dance moves so we don’t look like Elaine from Seinfeld :DJoin me in thanking Jonathan Bruce for taking over my website today! And as a special treat for ONE random commenter, Jonathan will give away a free e-book copy of his book, Project Northwoods!
Jonathan Charles Bruce began writing terrible fiction when he was four. Although the original manuscripts are lost (or perhaps destroyed), we can rest assured that his prose has improved significantly since then.
He has a Master’s Degree in history and enjoys dissecting the pop culture of the 20th century and reading books of a non-historical nature. He maintains a presence on the Internet at his imaginatively titled website, jonathancharlesbruce.com. He also provides work for Twenty Four Pages a Second, a pretty keen website you should totally check out.
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