Phillipe and Jorge don't believe for a second that we'll face some sort of economic calamity if the beaten-down, busted-up circus dog that was once the Republican Party fails to reach a budget deal with President Obama.

The fiscal cliff is just fodder for every TV numbnuts soi disant "pundit" who likes nothing better than a trumped-up emergency to justify his existence. And the Congressmen peddling this nonsense are no better.

Indeed, your superior correspondents like to think of the purveyors of this overblown non-crisis as "Fiscal Cliff Clavins," in homage to John Ratzenberger's character on the legendary sitcom Cheers. Cliffie was a government employee (postman), just like our fear-mongering Congressmen. And like the current bunch of dingbats wandering the halls of the Capitol, he was a puffed-up blowhard with a slim grip on reality who brooked no challenge to his bizarre view of the world.

When the New Year arrives, and the Fiscal Cliff Clavins merely exit stage left, returning to their mothers' houses for some shut-eye, do what P&J plan to do: order a couple more beers and wait for our chance to shout "Norm!" as we return to the status quo.


JOE'S JOURNEY

Local music fans know Joe Silva. For many years he was the main songwriter, singer, and drummer with the Threats, a popular Rhody-based band, and he's been having one terrific year. In July, Joe was invited to sing the National Anthem at a Red Sox game at Fenway Park and on December 14 at 7:30 pm, Joe will headline a great show at the Vets in Providence.

Joe's band will include drummer Anton Fig (from David Letterman's Late Show house band), Bob Cowsill (the Cowsills, of course), Michael "Tunes" Antunes (John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band), internationally acclaimed and Rhode island-based accordionist Cory Pesaturo, and Texas guitarist Christian Brooks. The concert, called "All for One," is a benefit for the Hasbro Children's Hospital.

Joe has also just released a CD, Blue, produced by Fig. There was a wonderful story by Bob Kerr in the BeloJo recently about Joe's journey — his attempt to "make it" in the music industry in Los Angeles and his years on the road. It is an illuminating and, ultimately, inspiring tale. Best wishes to Joe for a successful concert and a long and fruitful career.


FEEDING THE HUNGRY

Another benefit worthy of note will take place in Newport at Billy Goode's (23 Marlborough St) on December 15 around 9:45 pm, with proceeds going to the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Center Food Bank. Admission is $5 and you are also asked to bring a non-perishable food item.

On the bill will be Mark Cutler & Men of Great Courage and Newport native Bob Kendall (the Bob Kendall Explosion). Good music, good people, and a very good cause. Jorge is hoping to make it to the City by the Sea for this one. He hasn't seen his old friend Bob in years. Cutler and company? Well, that's a whole 'nother story.

Send mistletoe and Pulitzer-grade tips to p&j@phx.com.

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