12/8/10

RVOD145 The Being On Time Game

(1970s-ish, Educational/Short, color)

Riffers:

Mike Nelson, Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy

He has the attention span of a goldfish who lives in a bowl of cheap tequila.

Rating: **1/2

In a Nutshell:


The avuncular Mr. Mack returns to teach little Cindy how to be on time.

Summary:

My androgynous partner is always late.Camp Counselor calls everyone away from the playground to begin the three-legged race, but Cindy figures she can get just a few more swings in before it starts. Naturally, she’s late, leaving her partner high and dry. Later, her mother sends her down to visit Mr. Mack at his shop. She skips there in slow motion, arriving fully ten minutes after five o’clock.

The couplet-spewing Mr. Mack scolds her with many, many variations on the hurry/worry rhyme scheme. He goes over such object lessons as the girl who was late for her own counting contest, and the boy who rushed out to meet his friends on the basketball court, forgetting the ball. Also, what would happen if her dad refused to wake up until he had only five minutes to get to work? Why, he’d eat, dress and bath in hilarious fast motion, still arriving far too late to satisfy his huge, stogie-smoking boss.

To prevent such mishaps, Cindy needs to plan ahead, getting things ready when necessary and starting early where possible. If unforeseen circumstances prevent punctuality, she should have her mother call ahead to let the appropriate parties know.

Thoughts:

The Being On Time Game puts forward the radical notion that if you have to go to that one place to do that one thing, when the time comes perhaps you should not go to that other place and do that other thing instead. It ain’t brain surgery. That’s probably a good thing, as neither Cindy nor Mr. Mack look like brain surgeons.

A few favorite comments: When Cindy refuses to join the race immediately, Bill says, “I’m not getting off this swing until I determine my own gender.” A close-up of a clock in Mr. Mack’s insanely decorated workshop gets us Kevin’s best stoner impersonation, “Time... whoa...” At one point Mike notes, “It’s hard to be on time when you travel solely by slow-motion skipping.” The short has sound, if a bit basic advice, but the rhymes are horrible and that kid always looks like she’s about to fall asleep. It’s dull, is what I’m saying, and the best the riffers can do is make it less dull.