I wouldn’t say my girlfriend is obsessed with Canadian mockumentary series Trailer Park Boys, but when we were watching the show’s main characters, Mr. Lahey and Randy, perform live at The Rail Club last Thursday, she was clearly disappointed when I didn’t get a joke about the Bottle Kids. You know that Family Guy episode where Peter and Lois go to a KISS concert and Lois, to Peter’s surprise and disgust, gets the chorus to “Rock and Roll All Nite” wrong? That’s sort of what happened.
Exposed as the poseur that I am, I had to suffer the scorn of another Trailer Park Boys super-fan when he and my girlfriend were rehashing various bits while waiting for drinks at the bar. But he was nice, I guess, as well as baked like a pan of brownies. Lots of people were, in fact. Possibly Mr. Lahey, even. During the show, when he and Randy were peddling a bunch of questionably useful and shamelessly tasteless inventions, he put on a “suit” made out of a black 50-gallon trashcan liner with a clear plastic window taped to it, and he fired up a joint inside. If I remember correctly, the joint was passed up to the stage from an audience member. I suspect the real doob was swapped with a fake one that had been rolled specifically for that bit, but either way it was pretty funny. How can you not laugh at a balding, middle-aged man hotboxing himself inside a Hefty bag?
To some, I might have been cracking up over a glimpse into my eventual future, but whatever. Obviously, my girlfriend liked the show more than I did, but we were both fascinated by how surreal it is to see a television character in real life behaving exactly like he would on the show. There were a couple minutes following the intermission during which John Dunsworth, the actor who plays Mr. Lahey, broke character to talk about his daughter Sarah, an actress who is also a character on the show, but other than that, he was all Lahey, all the time. If you’ve ever been to Scarborough Faire, you know what it’s like to see a person staunchly remain part of an imagined universe. Except, in the case of Mr. Lahey and Randy Live, the village idiots came to you.