Story time

Encounters with Charlie Sheen, “The Bachelor” and a search for inspiration at the Daily office.

Ian Byrne

Welcome back everybody. Chances are youâÄôve accepted defeat and have returned to normal, non-spring break life. If youâÄôre reading this on your extended stay in Panama City Beach, let me commend you for being such a dedicated Minnesota Daily reader.

I had no definitive plans going into spring break. On Saturday, I went to the Victorian tower of doom that is the Daily office to begin my usual brainstorming routine for my weekly column. I grabbed as many old copies of the paper as I could and went up to the roof. I piled them up, doused them in lighter fluid, and set them ablaze. What would the smoke signals guide me to write about this week?

I sat and watched the fire from late morning until sunset. My tried and true method wasnâÄôt working. I retired to the Daily den to ponder further over a glass of sherry. Fortunately for us at the Daily, a good portion of last semesterâÄôs advertising revenue was used to install a marble fireplace in the den.

As the fire crackled, I looked up at the portraits of the Daily greats. Roy Wilkins, Bob Dylan, and Garrison Keillor, to name a few, stared back at me. Right then, I heard a voice. I looked left, right, up, down, and there he was! Yelling unintelligibly, the fire had become Charlie Sheen! His flames cooled a bit, and he told me his mind sensed from another dimension the burning of an advertisement for a promotional night at a local strip club.

I told him he would need to come back Monday with a student ID. He was angry at the lack of strippers present and said he was going to leave. âÄúMr. Sheen, no! I need inspiration, can you help me?âÄù He looked at me and said, âÄúDuh! Just watch TV man. Maybe see you Monday,âÄù and with that he vanished with a crackle.

So it was settled. On the advice of Charlie Sheen in the fireplace, I was to draw my inspiration for todayâÄôs column by watching television.

Monday night I watched the season finale of âÄúThe Bachelor,âÄù and it was like, so good. IâÄôve got to hand it to bachelor Brad Womack. For a guy who has said âÄúnoâÄù to more than 50 women in front of a primetime national television audience, I really think he saved his best material for last, telling contestant Chantal OâÄôBrien, âÄúI have stronger feelings âĦ for someone else.âÄù He had already demonstrated his charm and had us all swooning when he told his bride-to-be Emily Maynard, âÄúYou make me lose words. I feel like an idiot around you.âÄù

It is fairy tale material that Womack chose Maynard from 55 ABC-producer handpicked women over two seasons, proposed on television, and then postponed their wedding, which I read about in People magazine on Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday. Gentleman, we can all learn from WomackâÄôs ways. Drop out of college, work on an oilrig, find yourself on two seasons of âÄúThe BachelorâÄù sometime later and find true, conditional love.

When the show ended and I had wiped my tears away, my cell phone spontaneously combusted. Then I saw what looked to be the Eye of Sauron in my head, but it was actually Charlie Sheen. âÄúDude, I need to borrow your U Card to get into student ID night!âÄù I changed the channel to CBS and he went away.

I switched to MTV and saw that the popular series âÄúJersey ShoreâÄù was on. IâÄôm glad that MTV is innovative enough to try new things, like put a group of people together in a house to live with each other for a few months and film it. Not only that, but the show works hard to dispel stereotypes about Italian-Americans on the East Coast and provides good role models for todayâÄôs youth.

Speaking of âÄúJersey Shore,âÄù I caught Comedy CentralâÄôs âÄúRoast of Donald TrumpâÄù on Tuesday where Mike âÄúThe SituationâÄù Sorrentino stole the show. His joke about comedienne Whitney Cummings not being a grenade because she wonâÄôt be âÄúblowing up anytime soonâÄù capped an impressive and witty performance as he also made hilarious jokes mostly about how rich he is. The guy did make $5 million in 2010 and has contributed much to the betterment of society.

I needed a break from television on Thursday. Thank goodness it was St. PatrickâÄôs Day. Nothing beats a federal holiday where everyone who wears green can get out of work and legally get as drunk as they want in public.

Since Charlie Sheen had ruined my phone trying to mind text me, I couldnâÄôt text any of my friends to meet up with them for festivities. I wandered from pub to pub alone and eventually ended up back at the Daily. Good thing for us at the Daily though that our student service fees allocation from last year also allowed us to buy a billiards table, which I slept on.

The next day, some friends picked me up and I told them, âÄúYesterday was Thursday. Today is Friday. I so excited, I so excited, I gonna have a ball today. Tomorrow is Saturday, and Sunday comes afterwards. I donâÄôt want this weekend to end.âÄù We all then lamented about school and how we will have to wake up at 7 a.m., go downstairs and have cereal.

On Saturday, the last real day of spring break, I was watching television when I found some news station talking about some bombings somewhere. Then, below on the news ticker, it read, âÄúSelena Gomez says boyfriend Justin Bieber âÄòunderstandsâÄô her.âÄù I had to get the full story ASAP so I ran to my computer. I read the story, and sure enough, he does understand her! Thank goodness.

ThatâÄôs when Charlie Sheen invaded my mind again, Eye of Sauron style. âÄúSo, whatâÄôd you think of me on TV?âÄù When I told him I hadnâÄôt seen him on television, he responded, âÄúYou mean thereâÄôs other stuff on besides me?âÄù