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This morning, as nearly all mornings have over the past two weeks, begins with a Mel Gibson item. But this is not yet another retelling of the story of the temporary, tequila-and-hate-drenched fall of one of Hollywood's biggest stars; rather, this is the tale of the Gibson Affair's redefining of the American Dream itself. Whereas once this Dream was comprised of a vague desire to work hard and live better than the generation of suckers who came before, it now looks something like this:

Three dreamers walk into a bar frequented by some of the extravagantly rich and famous people who live in nearby mansions, fall into a well-photographed evening of boozing, joking ("He's just like a regular drunk guy!"), and affectionate, if somewhat uncomfortably erotic, shoulder rubs with a Bonafide Celebrity, awake the next morning to word that the new, famous pal who turned down rides home from his civilian drinking buddies decided to have that nightcap of amateur drag-racing along the beach, paranoidly chastising the sugary breasts of law enforcement officials, and accusing an ethnic group of playing a part in all worldwide armed conflicts after all, and realize that the digital mementoes of the magical evening contained in their PowerShot are now worth tens (or even hundreds) of thousands of dollars, spots on morning talk shows, and the general low-grade notoriety that comes with being The Last People Who Saw The Famous Guy Before He Did The Incredibly Stupid Thing. There was a time not too long ago when the Dream would end with a sitcom pilot based on the evening's misadventures, but current trends dictate that the next step for our lucky Moonshadows patrons is a Taradise/Punk'd-style reality show in which the trio of friends induce an increasingly low-grade procession of celebrities to do body shots with them while hidden cameras roll, well-disguised production vans trail their weaving drives home, then document their hilarious, unscripted encounters with police officers selected for DUI checkpoint duty based on the likelihood that their faith or ethnicity will induce some inebriated slurs. We definitely prefer this Dream to that up-by-the-bootstraps myth, which rarely invovlves pulling down six figures for getting shitfaced with Braveheart.