With Charlie Sheen’s meltdown hogging the headlines, I have to wonder if this is all clever manipulation by his team of publicists. If so, bravo! We’re such slaves to hype. Who cares what he does with his drugs, women, and teeth? I don’t, but I am fascinated by the publicity explosion. How can one man get so much attention?

I should do this. I should implode so I can sell more books. It’s true that fame hasn’t found me, so this would be a challenge. Well, it won’t hurt to practice in case something crazy happens like Oprah becoming frisky and digesting one of my tomes.

How would I meltdown?

I don’t have children to neglect, so that’s out. I adore my cats, so the opposite extreme would be more likely. I would build Syd and Symon guesthouses, complete with catnip gardens, fuzzy mice, and an abundance of twist ties.

Perhaps substance abuse would be more fun. I can’t overdose on wine because the hangover is too brutal to consider. Weed can only be inhaled up to a certain point–the point when I discover Ramen soup and creative additions such as eggs, sausage, and Doritos.

What about a sexual overdose? Impossible.

There is one mild obsession, which I can imagine becoming extreme: buying stuff. Amazon must have me on a VIP list because I can’t resist buying things I don’t need. It’s too easy: Just click and wait by the front door. I’m already overstocked on t-shirts, jeans, shoes, and watches. For this shopping meltdown to reach the next level, I’ll need a new wing … of closets.

The culmination would include other actor-inspired silliness such as shaving my head (Britney), over-inking (every player in the NBA), and having my parents lose their fucking minds (Cyrus et al).

Once my self-destruction was well underway, I would grant interviews. This is where I would shine. There would be no foolish talk denying my affliction and complaining about poor treatment while ranting Mohammad Ali-style about how I will conquer the world. Rubbish.

Barbara: So, Phil, with all of the recent news about your meltdown, are you ready to admit you have a problem and begin seeking treatment?

Phil: No. I am ready to kick ass and eat gnocchi … and I’m all out of ass.

Barbara: I don’t have any gnocchi.

Phil: Then this interview is over.

Barbara: Wait. I’ll send for some.

Phil: Can I also have a side of garlic bread?

Barbara: Sure. Now, do you …

Phil: Olives. I’m craving wrinkled olives with orange slices.

Barbara: Fine. Please, let’s continue.

Phil: Shoot.

Barbara: You were seen in a downtown club this weekend with a group of twenty-five-year-olds from Boston.

Phil: I don’t recall.

Barbara: But, you sent one of them this photo of your blue-pinstriped, erect penis with the caption, “Screw the Red Sox.”

Phil: That’s not my penis.

Barbara: It’s attached to you.

Phil: And, I’m attached to my penis–quite fond of him, actually. His name is Willy and he’s a Padres fan. Want to meet him, Babs?

Barbara: No, thank you.

Phil: Oh, come on. I bet Anderson Cooper would have a look-see.

Barbara: Please stop unbuttoning your jeans.

Phil: Willy wants a kiss.

Barbara: You are one sick puppy.

Phil: … with one very smoochable moisture-missile.

Barbara: Please seek treatment.

Phil: What? I’ll have you know I trimmed the hedges in preparation for Willy’s coming-out party. Here, give me a hand.

Barbara: Security!

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About the author

Author of humorous essays about relationships and lifestyles.