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A Rocky Evening

By H.G. Miller

So, let's not talk about what time it is, because I'm a little embarrassed about why it is I'm awake at this hour.

I mean, it isn't like I was up all night fighting a raging fire and saving the neighbor's cat. Or on a brilliant stream of consciousness writing binge. I'm not even sick, or drunk, or getting laid.

I have been watching a Rocky marathon on TNT.

Pity me as you will, but I am a firm believer that if they put it on TV, then somebody is watching it, and I can't be the only one. And more to the point, can you believe he beat Apollo Creed, Mr. T and that big white Russian dude? And all in the space of eight hours.

Eight? Oh, lord...

You know, they sucker you in with the first one. It's all so innocent at nine in the evening. A classic movie to watch before you go to bed. Edited for time, content and commercial interruption, of course. Who new they were going to put them back to back to back like that? I didn't. Not until the second one started, anyway.

It's such an evil trick. Because, the next one always starts with the ending of the previous one, so you get sucked into this vicious cycle. Oh no, he's fighting Mr. T again. Will he still win this time?

I ran into a similar problem back in college. College: where all of our bad habits really start. It was late in the evening, and I'd had a tough go of things at work that day. As luck would have it, not one but two different children decided to puke in the music department of the retail store for which I worked.

I know it sounds kind of coincidental, but when you realize that this was the heyday of Chumbawumba's Tubthumper, it makes perfect sense.

So, anyway, needing to relax and share in the good spirit of the world, I turned to that beacon of happiness and love. The Disney channel. Obviously, I realize that every channel is a Disney channel in some respect, but this was the one with the little mouse ears on it. How harmless could that one be?

Well, the powers that be had scheduled a midnight run of the third installment of the Mighty Ducks franchise. Having missed the second movie, I wasn't sure I would understand all of the character motivations and complex background story, but I figured it was worth a go.

In much the same way that Rocky Balboa's aw-shucks charm lured me in this evening, the rascally ways of those hockey kids had me riveted to the television.

Apparently, they were all in some sort of prep school, and the dude from Dawson's Creek was trying to get a girl in the sack by talking about Pantara, and the Deans of the place were all old and uncool, and… well, like I said, the complicated plot rattled me a bit, but I managed.

In the end, there was a hockey match between the original Mighty Ducks (all of the ones still under contract with Disney, anyway) and this team of blonde-haired Aryan varsity players. And wouldn't you know it, the whole school showed up to watch, including the chick that Pacey was trying to bag.

Unfathomably, against all odds, the Ducks actually won the game, and I found myself awake at three in the morning with a racing heart and an insatiable desire to find an ice pond.

This did not bode well for the test I had in my Early Modern Japan course later that day. Luckily, I have never gone to Japan, and likely won't for quite some time, so I can probably make up that credit later.

As for this Rocky marathon. Well, I probably will not be much use at the office tomorrow. Speaking of which, is that the sun?… What time IS it? Oh, crap, I need to go. Bye.