I got killed on NCIS
I got home tonight to find a voicemail message from my mom. “I just called to say that I’m watching NCIS, and guess who the murder victim is on tonight’s episode? Petty Officer Peter Lynn,” she said positively gleefully.
I immediately called back. “Wow! I can’t believe I was on JAG!” I said. I always refer to NCIS as JAG to annoy her. It’s my revenge for her constantly provoking me by calling Lee Majors the “Six-Dollar Man”, which used to make me furious when I was three or four years old. But JAG and NCIS do seem pretty much like the same show, after all, both being about military folks who solve crimes, although I made the argument last time I was home that basically any prime-time CBS show aimed at old folks, especially any aired on a Friday or Saturday night, is essentially JAG. This includes Without a Trace and Criminal Minds (which is where Mandy Patinkin is these days, it turns out, although he’s aged shockingly badly), but I even extend this as far as Nash Bridges and Walker: Texas Ranger. Nobody I know watches them, you never see commercials for them, but they somehow get huge ratings. It’s all JAG to me. Of course, when JAG itself was on TV, I used to have to take a different approach to annoying my mom, which was to refer to the main character as “Jag”, as though that were his name and not an acronym for Judge Advocate General. “Oh boy!” I’d say. “How’s Jag going to get out of this one?”
Anyway, I assured my mom that no one had slashed my throat, although I’d just been stabbed a few times at fencing practice, and hung up. I flipped the TV over to a West Coast channel to catch the episode of NCIS in question, and even though I knew it was coming, when they announced the murder victim’s name as Petty Officer Peter Lynn, damned if it didn’t make a chill run right up my spine. It was creepy every time they mentioned it, not least because I actually did hold the rank of Petty Officer when I was in the Sea Scouts. I was relieved when the episode shifted focus to another dead guy who was found near a huge puddle of vomit consisting mainly of Cheez Whiz, which is also creepy, but at least leaves my name out of it.
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