One lazy afternoon (maybe in the summer), Erin and I were sitting in her living room with nothing to do. As she scrolled through the TV guide channel, we saw that "The Big Lebowski" was playing on one of the movie channels. Never having seen it, and finding it hilarious that we actually knew someone with the last name of Lebowski who was very short (a 'SMALL Lebowski, get it?), we decided to give it a whirl.
Before reading on, please note the fact that we knew nothing about the movie’s plot, nor had we any idea who was actually in it…
When we first put it on, I noticed that the woman looked really familiar. “I think that’s Tia Carrere or whatever her name is,” I said.
A few minutes later, Zak Orth (Wet Hot American Summer, various Stella sketches) graced the screen. We were both surprised because we didn’t know that he was famous enough to be cast in a movie such as "The Big Lebowski".
After about half an hour, we were completely confused. Not one person had been referred to as "Lebowski". “Maybe it’s one of those things where you don’t find out who Lebowski is until the end,” I said. Erin suggested, “Maybe Lebowski isn’t a person. Maybe it’s a noun.”
So we continued watching, thinking that maybe the word "lebowski" referred to a mix-up of some kind, as in “Boy was THAT a big lebowski!” We became more convinced of the possibility as the plot thickened…this kid (played by Jason London) was totally in love with his hot math tutor and had just found out that she was actually HIS MATH TEACHER’S WIFE! What a big lebowski! Or maybe not…
(By the way...just in case "lebowski" actually WAS a noun and not a name, we did our due diligence by consulting the nearest Webster's. As you can probably guess, no "lebowski" to be found.)
One of us suggested that we check the actual printed TV guide to make sure that we were, in fact, watching the movie we thought we were watching. There it was, plain as day: channel 147 (or something), from 2pm-4pm (or sometime), "The Big Lebowski".
Somehow convinced that the TV guide channel and the printed TV guide could not possibly BOTH be wrong, we watched the entire movie all the way through the end credits, still wondering what in heaven’s name “The Big Lebowski” referred to and why everyone seemed to love it so much considering how utterly cheesy and lame it was.
Completely stymied, we finally decided to consult the internet. We searched for "The Big Lebowski" and immediately recognized that it was TOTALLY not what we had been watching. Jeff Bridges? John Goodman? They were SO not in that movie! We were flabbergasted to learn that bowling was such a large part of the plot, as no one had even mentioned bowling in the movie we’d been watching! What HAD we been watching anyway?
I figured that if we searched for Tia Carrere movies we’d probably find it, and we most certainly did: we’d spent the afternoon watching "My Teacher's Wife". Now THAT made some sense!
Postscript: To this day, neither one of us has actually seen "The Big Lebowski".