Jewish World Review May 24, 2002 / 13 Sivan, 5762

Lori Borgman

Lori Borgman
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Consumer Reports

Ozzy, if you come for dinner, bring change | Ever since Ozzy Osbourne had dinner in D.C. with some of the big wigs from the White House, I've been pondering inviting him to my house. Ozzy is the aging, drugged-out heavy metal rocker from several decades ago who spewed satanic lyrics, bit the heads off small flying critters, and recently cashed a $200,000 check from MTV for the privilege of broadcasting his bizarre private family life.

I can't figure out why Ozzy was dining with heads of state, other than it must have been some sort of family values outreach program. In any case, I'd like to have Ozzy over for dinner, too. Naturally, we'd have to lay a few ground rules.

My first rule of dinner would be this: No cussin'. This will be hard for the most bleeped man in the history of television, so I'm going to pull something out of the cupboard we haven't used in years. The cuss box. You cuss, you pay. It's a quarter a pop, Ozzy. If the cuss box doesn't work for you, I can let you know when your speech is unacceptable by telling you to drop and give me ten. It will be great for your upper arms.

I thought we'd make it a Saturday night to avoid your crazed rantings about Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. That's not to say we wouldn't be open to a good theological discussion. That is, if you're up for speaking in sentences.

(While we're on the topic of language, I know you're fond of using the phrase, "Who the f- is . . ." We don't do that here, so if you would, when in Rome. We don't use that word as a courtesy title, a noun, a verb, or even a conjunction and never in reference to a conservative. As a matter of fact, if we get on the topic of politics and the name Reagan comes up, you should know that we refer to him as "Ronald, G-d Bless His Soul, Reagan." Thanks. Just thought it would be good if we're on the same page.)

One note of concern, we do have bats gliding around the weeping willow tree out back and mourning doves roosting on the patio from time to time. Here's the deal, Ozzy. I ask that you not bite the head off anything that is not on your plate.

I'm cool with the grungy pink and purple hair (I have a lot of bad hair days myself), but leave the sunglasses at the door, please. I like eye contact. Nix the satanic grimace, too. It may have entertained the beltway crowd, but I prefer something less threatening when dining by candlelight and using sharp knives.

Here's why I'd like to have you and the fam over, Ozzy. First, I think it's great that you and Sharon have stayed married all these years. Beneath the theatrics and hoopla, that says something interesting about the both of you.

The second reason I'd like to have you over is this: A lot of the talking heads, pundits and self-proclaimed intelligentsia say your MTV show proves you're just like the rest of us - just a normal, typical, healthy American family. They're lying to you, Ozzy. Now, calm down, dude. Don't go bleepin' on me and waving your fingers around. They're a bunch of yellow-bellied chicken livers afraid to tell you the truth. I'll say this as gently as I can - and I think you'd be the first to admit it - you are completely and totally NOT NORMAL.

I'd like to give you a glimpse of what normal is like - well, at least some semblance of normal. Normal is so totally different from what you do now, you could think of it as your mid-life rebellion.

For starters, we don't scream bleepin' invectives at the kids and the kids don't flip us off. We don't throw things. We don't rage at the VCR, stomp around slamming doors, or go ballistic on the neighbors. We don't let our teenagers run wild. We keep tabs on them and they absolutely love it. OK, so I made that last part up. We keep tabs on them anyway.

Truthfully, we talk, we laugh, we disagree, and even go toe-to-toe,. Basically, we enjoy life and one another without a lot of trash talk and anger.

If you want a sample of something in the realm of normal, come on over. Real people, real food, real conversation. It could be an interesting night.

I just saw another clip from your television show. Better bring a lot of change for the cuss box. On second thought, bring a major credit card.

JWR contributor Lori Borgman is the author of I Was a Better Mother Before I Had Kids. To comment, please click here.

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© 2001, Lori Borgman