Oct 8, 2019
Family Ties “Karen II, Alex 0” (part 2 of 3)
Alex enters the immaculate foyer of the Alpha House. There’s even a sign on the door saying, “Alpha Phi Epsilon.” There’s a sign… on the inside… of the door. Do a lot of people regain consciousness in that foyer and immediately ask, “Where the hell am I?”
The living room of the frat looks a great deal like the library on a cruise ship. There are several decanters of brandy, and an antique globe that, very probably, opens to reveal several more decanters of brandy. And hey, Alex is carrying a briefcase. Even assuming this doesn’t mark him as a loon, let me ask you this: What could possibly be in there?
As Alex waits, the door opens and a ridiculous-looking nerd walks in. He’s wearing tennis shoes, plaid pants, a yellow shirt, a different pattern plaid tie, and Buddy Holly glasses. Steve Urkel would tell this guy to dial it down. Unless he’s working on a graphical user interface for his operating system, he is very poorly dressed.
The nerd—he’s actually more of a dweeb—introduces himself as Petey Gordon. He asks if Alex is Don Caruthers and Craig Duvall. Alex is not. Petey has been invited to rush the frat because he’s a legacy. He’s nervous, though. His father might have been lying to him. Oh, this is painful. What makes it even worse is that Petey is being played by soon-to-be world famous comedian…
What do you mean you’ve never heard of Barry Sobel? He was white hot on the standup circuit in 1984. He had this kind of street-smart, urban, dangerous yet simultaneously nerdy Jewish persona that people loved. He earned national fame as the only white performer on an HBO special with Arsenio Hall, Chris Rock, and Robert Townsend. Would even Arsenio take his call today?
The two things you need to know about Barry Sobel are: 1) He is very, very persistent. Barry never went away; he’s still doing standup and making web videos today. 2) He is very, very annoying. According to his MySpace page, he has “shared a joke with Bruce Springsteen, a smoke with Madonna, [and] a toke with the Clash.” Also, his first friend on MySpace is Tom Hanks. Good for you, Barry. Thanks for keeping it real