Tuesday, October 2, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #63 Michelangelo

I feel like I can almost just copy and paste the entry for Da Vinci and put it here. Whatever. Michelangelo ALSO had a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle named after him, who was alot less of a dick than Leonardo, who always behaved like he had a stick jammed up his ass.

Michelangelo is probably best known for painting the ceiling in the Sistine Chapel, pictured in slightly PhotoShopped form above, which is pretty awesome in and of itself, but he also sculpted the famous statue of the Biblical king, David as well as the almost as famous and equally sublime Pieta. He also did a really cool sculpture of Moses, and (I did not know this until doing a bit of research for this post) he also was the architect who designed St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.

That's it. Law school is taking alot out of me, and I'd really rather get through the list so sorry if these posts are becoming somewhat short. Next on the list is number 62, the man all (straight) men wish they were.

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #64 John Cleese

The funniest man in the funniest comedy troupe of all time, John Cleese comes in at number 64 of this list. I am sorely tempted here to go off on a tangent here about something like a man with a tape recorder in his nose. Instead I will mention here that Cleese was one of the funniest guests ever on The Muppet Show. Furthermore.... well, just watch this clip right here:

If that doesn't get you on this list, I don't know what will. Oh and he also did the Ministry of Silly Walks, the sketch about the fish called Eric, the Cheese Shop sketch, and of course the immortal Dead Parrot sketch.

Next time I post, it'll be about number 61 on the list, a guy who painted a really cool ceiling once.

Friday, September 14, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #79 Sir George Martin, CBE

You know what? Fuck Michael Jackson. I am so outraged about that goddamn diaper commercial, that Michael Jackson is getting stricken from the list. Can I do that? Sure. Why? Because it's my blog and Jacko's a douchebag for selling out the Beatles to sell bags for baby shit.

I'm replacing him here with Sir George Martin, CBE. If you've never heard of him, you've certainly heard the music he's produced before. He was the closest thing there ever was to a Fifth Beatle. Martin produced all of the Beatles' albums except for Let It Be, and that turned out to be an absolutely terrible fucking record, thanks to Phil "I allegedly murdered a struggling actress" Spector (might be able to strike the allegedly any minute now!).

And it's not like George Martin was just pushing buttons either. Where Lennon and McCartney were the raw writing talent of the band early on, Martin was the technical expert. None of the Beatles could read or write music and alot of the later stuff was jotted down by Martin and arranged for classically trained musicians to play. Some of his most notable stuff is playing the baroque sounding piano solo in "In My Life," arranging the orchestral build up in "A Day in the Life," and the circus music in "Being For the Benefit of Mr. Kite."

Also George Martin is a knight. A fucking knight. Suck it, Michael Jackson, you turd.

By the way, the John Cleese post will get done when I have time.

What the hell, man?

So I'm watching television the other day and a commercial for diapers comes on. The music being used: "All You Need is Luvs." That's right, they bastardized a simple, elegant, anti-war/bigotry/everything wrong with the world song to sell disposable diapers. Now I have never been the sort of person to denounce artists for using their music in commercials, even if it is rather tacky (Bob Seger and John Mellencamp, I'm looking at you!). But this is the bottom of the barrel. In my honest opinion, "All You Need Is Love" is probably the best thing, lyrically, that Lennon ever wrote and the fact that it's being used in a commercial for a product designed to hold baby piss and shit is personally offensive to me.

Now lest either one of my readers get offended and angry at Sir Paul, Ringo, Yoko, or Olivia, bear in mind that the Beatles and their survivors don't hold the rights to the vast majority of their songs. For that we can actually blame none other than Michael Jackson, the little boy-diddling fuck. As a matter of fact, when Paul tried to buy the rights to the songs when they came up at auction, Jacko outbid him and proceeded to allow Nike to use "Revolution" to sell shoes, something that outraged Paul and led to a falling out between the two musicians.

Come to think of it, it's probably a really bad idea to feud with Paul McCartney. Think about it-- he has most famously and publicly feuded with Michael Jackson and Phil Spector and look what happened to both of those assholes.

Anyway, this whole advertisement thing annoyed me, and got me thinking-- Have you ever been offended by a song you like alot in a commercial? The other one that comes to mind that could have pissed alot of people off was Nike using "Spirit in the Sky," a song about dying in Viet Nam and going to heaven to meet Jeebus, for a football commercial. Feel free to post in the comments... please?

Sunday, July 22, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #65 Harrison Ford

He is the biggest box office draw ever, having had movies that he starred in gross more money combined than any other actor on the planet, living or dead. Harrison Ford has shown TONS of range, playing, to wit:

  • An ass-kicking galactic smuggler (Han Solo)
  • An ass-kicking archaeologist (Indiana Jones)
  • An ass-kicking President of the United States (in Air Force One)
  • An ass-kicking robot bounty hunter (Blade Runner)
  • An ass-kicking doctor who totally didn't murder his wife. Tommy Lee Jones doesn't care. (The Fugitive)
  • An ass-kicking cop playing an ass-kicking Amish (Witness. I swear I'm not making that up)

Okay so maybe he doesn't have that much range. But when I was a kid I frigging idolized Indiana Jones. I remember when we went to MGM Studios when I was a little boy, I bought a genuinely and officially licensed Indiana Jones fedora. Man I felt so cool having adventures in the yard wearing that thing. Also I always thought it was really cool how Indy could talk without really moving his lips at all.

In fact, Harrison Ford SHOULD be alot higher on this list, considering that he was in the three Star Wars movies that actually mattered AND that he was Indiana Jones. But he's gotten old, he's lost a bit of his touch, and more important (and embarrassingly) he has made a string of gawdawful movies the last ten years or so, including Firewall, Holywood Homicide, and, perhaps worst of all, K-19: The Widowmaker. God damn, Widowmaker was terrible.

Next time on the list, something completely different. A man sitting at a desk announcing complete non sequiteur comedy sketches.

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #66 Leonardo Da Vinci

Now I know I haven't put a lot of artsy fartsy types on this list-- in fact I haven't put any at all so far. Pablo Picasso, for example, will not be on this list. To be one of the 100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived, you have to do much more than paint pretty pictures! You have to uhmmm... be like this guy, or that guy, you know.... class all the way.

But here's Da Vinci, so I know you're wondering-- Djmmm, have you gone all soft on us here? And the answer, I assure you, is "No, no I have not." Because Leonardo Da Vinci was much more than a great painter who had the stick-in-the-mud ninja turtle named after him. He was a fuckin' genius.

He was born in 1452 and died in 1519 and in those 67 years he was THE Renaissance Man. He was a painter, sculptor, engineer, and anatomist among other things. He designed a fucking helicopter in the 16th century. Keep in mind that the man died almost 400 years before the Wright Brothers came along and had they're little flight at Kitty Hawk. Among other ideas he came up with that were way ahead of his time were plate tectonics, solar power, internet porn, calculators, baseball, and tanks. WARNING: Two of the preceding assertions may not be true.

If all of this wasn't enough the man was also a brilliant artist who created three of the most famous images in the Western canon-- this, this, and this. That last one has been kind of the inspiration for a shitty book about Jesus boning Mary Magdalene or some other such nonsense. I don't know, because I haven't read it. I have better things to do with my time, like say, writing this shittier and irregularly updated blog.

Okay enough with the serious honest to goodness great people and back to the People Who Are Great Because This Is My Blog and I Say So. Next on the list will be number 65, the coolest and baddest 65 year old working action star ever, the subject of man crushes all over America and a sexy sexy man.

Friday, July 20, 2007

And on the Ninth day, God said, "Let there be Internet" and He saw that it was good...

I really don't have alot to say other than when Al Gore invented the Internet, I'm pretty sure this wasn't what he had in mind...

Thanks to my close personal friend Space Bream for the linkage. Because in Space, no one can hear the Bream......

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #67 Francis Ford Coppola

He has directed The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, The Conversation, and Apocalypse Now. Those four movies alone ensure that he is in the Pantheon of Great Directors and puts him on this list. The reason that he's not any higher on this list than 67? Jack. What an abortion of a movie that was. See I bet you thought I was going to say The Godfather Part III. And yes, that was terrible and nearly ruined the series. But, as Meat Loaf (or, as the New York Times calls him, Mr. Loaf) once sang, "Two out of three ain't bad."

The first two Godfather movies were possibly the two greatest films ever made and both are almost certainly in the top five, if one was being particularly harsh. Interestingly, Coppola was almost fired from directing the original because Paramount, and Robert Evans specifically, was unhappy with some of his casting decisions. In particular, Evans hated the casting of Pacino as Michael Corleone and referred to him as "that midget, Pacino." Let that sink in for a moment.

It is staggering to think of who MIGHT have played Michael in the film:

  • Ryan O'Neill
  • Robert Redford
  • Robert DeNiro
  • James Caan
  • Dustin Hoffman
  • Martin Sheen
In fact, just watch.

Also considered to play the role of the Don, were Spencer Tracy and Laurence Olivier. Luckily, Coppola stuck to his guns, casted Pacino and Marlon Brando, and created a masterpiece.

Now that I have established his greatness, I must proceed to rip Francis Ford Coppola a new one. I mean, there's Jack, a movie about a boy who ages at four times the normal rate. So the protagonist, at the age of ten, looks like Robin Williams (poor kid). An abomination, it pushed Robin Williams toward making more sentimental drivel like Bicentenial Man, which, if you think about it, is just Jack but the opposite. For this alone, Coppola deserves some scorn.

And then there is the thorny issue of Godfather Part III. It wasn't a bad movie. Really. It just didn't live up to the expectations created by its predecessors, which were two of the greatest films ever created. Still, Coppola deserves some criticism for casting his daughter, Sofia, in a central role as Michael's daughter Mary. To be fair, the first two films were made with a measure of nepotism when Coppola cast his sister, Talia Shire in the role of Connie. The difference is that Shire is a competent actress and, despite the fact that Sofia had been in the original film as the baby in the baptism scenes, well Sofia Coppola was a gawdawful actress. Her woodenness more or less ruined the movie and Francis Ford Coppola deserves a big wagging finger of shame for that.

On the other hand, according to George Lucas, Coppola is the inspiration for the character of Han Solo in Star Wars. So that's some redemption.

Also at the Oscars this year, in the picture above, Coppola wore a blue tie with his tuxedo and somehow managed to make George Lucas look well-dressed, which is a real accomplishment.

Next on the list, one of history's true Renaissance Men-- an artist, engineer, mathematician, inventor, and musician. Sadly, of late his name has been appropriated for a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, a shitty novel, and a shittier Tom Hanks movie.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

"I've got a bad feeling about this ..."

P and F are getting married. After knowing each other a grand total of six months. The headline says it all people. At least if they get divorced in a few years, F will have a close friend who is an attorney. That is if they last to summer of 2010 when I (hopefully) pass the bar. Jesusfucking Christ this is a terrible idea.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

50 Cent scares me....

I was just at Blockbuster and saw the above magazine cover staring up at me. It was absolutely frightening. I felt the need to share this with you. Why is 50 so angry? It's like he doesn't even really want to be on the cover of Vibe and would much rather prefer showing off his lovely garden on the cover of Redbook.

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #68 Ian Fleming

I like James Bond alot. But there's no way I could have done this post justice. So I asked one of my close, personal friends, Grorx, who is a huge Bond fan to do this post. Here now, for the first time, a special guest writer on HialeahCrimson. Enjoy and thanks to Grorx for doing this one!

Alexander Fleming is best known for his most enduring creation: Penicillin, which has saved countless lives in the struggle against bacterial infection. His discovery has saved millions of lives in only a few decades, and thus he certainly deserves find his place somewhere
amongst the 100 greatest human beings ever.

However, it is Ian Fleming that jumps in at the number 68 spot. I am not aware if Ian and Alexander were somehow related, except that their creations are both much more famous than either of them probably ever will be by themselves. Ian is best known for arguably one of the most important fictional characters of the later 20th century: British Secret Service agent, James Bond. [Editor's Note: Alexander Fleming will not be on this list. This should tell you something about this blog.]

While this claim may come as somewhat of a surprise, it is well known that James Bond is nothing short of a cultural icon. His career began with the first James Bond novel, Casino Royale, published by Fleming in 1953. It became a large success for its day, and was followed by 13
other books and collections of short stories. But the phenomenon didn't end there. In 1962, James Bond became big in a way Fleming never would have imagined with the release of Dr. No.

James Bond has since become a worldwide phenomenon, with over 20 feature films (and more in the works) starring the character. It is currently the longest continually running english-language film series. If you adjust for inflation, these films have grossed over $11 BILLION, a number certainly fit for a madman's ransom of the world. The character has been so durable, that other authors have taken up Fleming's mantle and continued writing about the character in new novels, adapting what was certainly a Cold War creation to changing times and political realities. He has also appeared in comic books, radio shows, and video games, not to mention the immeasurable influence he has had on other characters and writers of the spy genre. Even the parodies based on Fleming's work, such as Austin Powers and Dr. Evil, have become cultural phenomena.

Why has it struck a tone? I think the answer to this lies within the Western psyche, and a full response would probably include more bullshit than Djmmm46 would be comfortable with, especially since graduating. Suffice to say, the saying goes that "Men want to be him, and women want to be with him." He has been said to define cool, suave masculinity, and is both tasteful and refined yet fiercely loyal to his passions and not afraid to do what he has to do to get the job done. He is arguably THE Western Hemisphere's 20th Century hero AND anti-hero, as one commentary I read on him said he was the kind of guy you wanted on your side but wouldn't necessarily bring home to meet the family. Part cowboy and part playboy, He is flawed and perhaps unloved except for his usefulness as a tool.

Despite the women and the gadgets, Bond is presented as an exceedingly lonely man, especially in the more introspective and darker-themed books. The character is someone based on Fleming's own life, born into a minor aristocratic family and sent away early to boarding school, bouncing from school to school and job to job. Though he did not participate in many of the James Bond-type adventures of the Second World War, he did work with British Intelligence services. There he met men who would serve as the models for James Bond, and spent his post-war life going between England and his home in Jamaica, named Goldeneye, where he wrote. The closest he got to living out real James Bond adventures can be seen in a somewhat-fictionalized film about his life, in which he is played by the son of another high ranking Greatest Human Being of All Time.

Furthermore, Fleming also wrote the beloved children's book Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, which was made into the famous movie starring Dick Van Dyke.

Go figure.

Next on the list, at #67, one of the great film directors of our time, who nearly self indulgently ruined the greatest film series ever by casting his incompetent daughter in a key role in the final film of the trilogy. He would otherwise be much higher.

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #69 Ron Jeremy

This should surprise no one. Ron Jeremy is, bar none, the most famous and beloved (is that REALLY the right word?) porn star in the world. Some interesting facts about Ron Jeremy:

  • He holds a Master's in, get this, Special Education. He used to teach Special Ed kids before becoming a porn star.
  • He went to high school with Carl Winslow
  • He can ejaculate on command, which is pretty amazing.
  • He is a brown belt in Kung Fu. In other words, Ron Jeremy can probably kick your ass.
  • He was in Boondock Saints and has tried to expand his career into mainstream acting, bad standup comedy, and apparently, condiments.

Note that I had to perilously Google "Ron Jeremy hot sauce" to find that, so appreciate this post. Also if you haven't seen Porn Star: The Legend of Ron Jeremy, I strongly recommend you give it a go. The film itself is not pornographic. It's a pretty standard documentary and Jeremy comes across as an extremely sympathetic figure.

So there it is-- Ron Jeremy, the 69th Greatest Human Being Who Ever Lived. If you're not happy about this you're probably either a feminazi or a fundy Christian. Either way this blog is NOT for you, so fuck off.

Next on the list, number 68, the creator of the very definition of cool, the suavest fictional spy ever beheld by man. That's gotta count for something.

Friday, June 22, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #70 Abraham Lincoln

If this blog was serious, I'd say Abraham Lincoln was the Greatest President this Republic has ever been lucky enough to elect at just the right time, put him in the top three and call it a night. But we don't do serious here, and so here he is at number 70, sandwiched between a baseball writer and .... well let's just say you won't be surprised by who comes in at #69. So take this all with a grain of salt, people.

George Washington was, as I have noted, incredibly important to the United States. If he'd been slightly different, perhaps more ambitious, the country and government would likely be completely different in its form. Having said that, Lincoln was a "greater" president because of the circumstances. While Lincoln's reasons for prosecuting the Civil War had less to do with freeing slaves and more to do with keeping the country together, it doesn't diminish his accomplishments. At the end of the war, the slaves were free, and the Union was preserved. This IS a big deal.

Let's not forget that Lincoln inherited a country in REALLY bad shape. I mean, you think the Democrats were pissed at Bush in 2000? Lincoln was elected with merely 40% of the popular vote and wasn't even on the ballot in nine of the states. NOT EVEN ONE LOUSY VOTE in the then nascent GOP's column in those states. Then people got so pissed off they took up arms against the government. The magnitude of this situation cannot be overstated.

Lincoln rules though because he was more than just the best leader this country has ever seen. He was an amazing writer, and the Gettysberg Address is still extremely eloquent and something of a humorist in addition to a remarkably cunning politician. On top of all of this, this man was probably a manic-depressive who with the weight of the world and the fears and hopes of a nation pressing down upon his shoulders somehow managed to buckle down during this country's darkest hour and keep from putting a bullet in his own hea.... oh damn, that was inappropriate. Well uhmmm.... they named Lincoln Logs for him.

Anyway, next on the list #69. 'Nuff Said. Just you wait for it.

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #71 Peter Gammons

I start law school on 13 August, 2007. Can I get this done before then without sacrificing quality? We'll see.

Peter Gammons checks in on this list at #71. He is the best sportswriter I have ever read not only because he is a good writer and is probably the best connected person in Major League Baseball. He is incredibly enthusiastic about the game and it really comes across, not only in his columns but also in his on air presentations on ESPN. Also he plays guitar, loves indy rock, and cut an album to benefit the Jimmy Fund, which is kind of cool and random in and of itself.

And now let's jump into the Way Back Machine for Personal Anecdote Time!!!

It was October of 2003, and I was covering the ALCS at Fenway Park for Harvard radio. I got to the park extra early, maybe three or four hours before the scheduled first pitch and I saw Peter Gammons in one of the concourses of this empty ballpark and he was working. He was making calls, writing emails, and generally trying to get things done. In between calls, I approached him and timidly and meekly asked if he'd give me a few minutes of his time for an interview. He politely told me that he was very busy and on a deadline at the moment but would be happy to talk to me a little bit later.

He kept his promise and, it just so happened that the game was rain-delayed. As we were waiting to get word as to whether the game would be played that night (it was eventually postponed) he allowed me to interview him in the Boston Red Sox dugout. He spoke knowledgeably, enthusiastically, and articulately about baseball and sports journalism and when he was done, he recorded a small promotional legal identification for our radio station.

None of this was unexpected. After all he was a major contributor to the World Wide Leader in Sports and eventually would be honored by the Hall of Fame for his writing. However what did strike me was something that I did not think about until later. At the beginning of the interview, when we exchanged the standard pleasantries of the radio interview, i.e. "I'm here with Peter Gammons. How are you today, Peter?", he replied that he was fine but that he really was hoping the game would start. He was disappointed that it was raining.

Lest you think I am making a mountain out of a molehill, bear in mind that this man has covered Major League Baseball games for thirty years. He is at the World Series every year and has never appeared to be in awe by the superstars of Major League Baseball. Still, he was disappointed. Here was a man who should probably be jaded, who has forgotten more about professional athletes than any of us know, and yet he was still enthusiastic about what it was all about.

Peter Gammons is not only the best at what he does. He is a man who appears to truly love what he does, and seems to recognize how lucky he is to do it. We should all be so lucky.

Next time, the 70th Greatest Human Being Who Ever Lived, the signer of the Emancipation Proclamation, Liberator of the Slaves, Savior of the Union, and, most importantly of all, the Eponym of the Lincoln Logs.

Pentecostals disturbing me...

As readers of this blog will know, I am a committed atheist. I believe that all religion, superstition, and belief in the paranormal is a crock. I also feel that if you want to believe something stupid that's your own problem, so long as you keep it to yourself. Having said that, I have some concerns that I hope to vent a little on this blog.

I have a very close and personal friend (close enough that I don't feel my concern is a result of my being nosy) who is dating someone who is a practicing Pentecostal. Let us call the friend "F" and the Pentecostal significant other "P". F was raised a Roman Catholic and has often stated that they are not particularly religious and don't really feel a need to participate in organized religion. Recently (about six to seven months ago) F and P started dating. P got F to go to church with P and P's family and now F is attending church with P several times a week including Sunday services that last three hours. This church is pretty standard Pentecostal fare and, I am told, includes speaking in tongues and people passing out in the aisles. If you're interested in learning a little more about this sect of Christianity, read more here.

Now all of this is good and well and I wouldn't even mind normally because, hey it's something to make fun of. However, I recently learned that this church encourages tithing and F is donating ten percent of their paycheck to this church every week. For the record, F is a full-time student who works a decent paying job part-time and lives with their parents. In other words, F is far from self-sufficient. I find this development profoundly distressing and am not sure how to approach it. I've REALLY thought this through and have concluded that my concern is far from nosy and is merited.

So I appeal to you, my dear readers, to guide me. I know I've been incredibly delinquent in updating to this blog, but please, if you have any advice on how I can best approach my dear friend, please post an anonymous comment. It would be much appreciated. Thanks for reading, and apologies for excising gender-specific pronouns, as I think this may have made my writing a little awkward, but is well worth it to protect the identities of the parties involved.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Pirates of the Caribean is a big silly mess of a movie

And I'm perfectly fine with that. I had adjusted my expectations for it after the following two reviews from friends and readers of this blog:

  • "It sucked Kraken balls."
  • "Didn't make any sense, bad dialogue, no ending."

First things first. The author of the first review is a malcontent who wouldn't recognize a fun movie if it got naked, painted itself purple, jumped on top of a piano and started singing "Fun Movies Are Here Again."

The author of the second review... well honestly she's a bit more of a friend of a friend, and I guess I respect her opinion. I certainly agree with her review, at least the first two parts of it. Parts of the movie made no sense whatsoever, and some of the dialogue was almost George Lucas level bad, though I think the ending was fine. Having said that, I disagree with the conclusion-- that the movie sucked. At World's End is a mess of a movie. But then again so was Dead Man's Chest and, albeit to a lesser degree, so was Curse of the Black Pearl. I will grant that I did not think it was quite as good as the first two films, I did not think it was bad in the way that Spider-man 3 was (that goddamn jazz club/West Side Story sequence was GAWDAWFUL and more or less single-handedly ruined the movie for me). It's still a rollicking good time (a long one too, so be sure to take a piss and a dump, if necessary, before the movie starts) and be sure to stick around after the credits. The first two films had a short scene, post-credits, and the third film is no exception

Saturday, April 28, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #72 George Washington

The first serious person on this list, he probably actually deserves to be alot higher than here, but this is supposed to be fun and arbitrary so here comes George Washington at #72.

I think the most interesting thing about George Washington is the incredible mound of bullshit mythology that surrounds him. He might (seriously) be the most important figure in American history but alot of what many Americans think they know about him is purely fabricated. Among some of the more obvious and not-so obvious myths:

  • George Washington once threw a silver dollar across the Potomac River. The river is a mile wide at Mount Vernon. Nolan Fucking Ryan couldn't throw a silver dollar across the Potomac River.
  • That stupid cherry tree story. A dude named Parson Weems just made it up. That's right, the "I cannot tell a lie" story is complete and unadulterated bullshit.
  • He wore wooden false teeth. Not true, though he did have teeth made of lead and hippo bones. This is actually even cooler than wooden teeth if you ask me.
  • He knelt in prayer during the dark, cold winter at Valley Forge. To me, this is the most egregious of these myths. Washington was extremely private about his religion, conspicuously silent on Christianity. He was almost certainly NOT a Christian and you can read more about it in this book, Moral Minority, by Brooke Allen.
Washington's influence, though much of it might have something to do with the mythology built up around him by the likes of Parson Weems, has resonated on down through the last 208 years since his death in 1799. He set examples in his presidency that continue to be followed today.

Finally, I think any discussion about Washington would be incomplete without mention of his skills as a general. Let's face facts, folks-- George Washington was a bad motherfucker. He was so bad, that the Iroquois took to calling him Devourer of Villages after they bumped heads with him in the French and Indian War and then again in the Revolution.

Next on the list, the best writer in the history of baseball. Also a really nice dude.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Oh snap! Boris Yeltsin croaked!

The first democratically elected president of Russia is dead. I just thought this was worth mentioning. Yeltsin played an instrumental role in bringing the Soviet Union to its death and deserves a little tip of the hat here.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #73 Richard Pryor

Richard Pryor was THE funniest stand-up comic in history. Period. Paragraph. End of discussion. Seinfeld may have had the best sitcom; Carlin may be incredibly sharp, witty, and insightful; but Richard Pryor has them ALL beat. Seinfeld himself once called him "the Picasso of our profession" with Whoopi Goldberg saying he was her biggest influence. Pryor's stuff is still remarkably fresh and funny and his influence in undeniable. Just watch Chappelle's Show and then watch or listen to an old Pryor stand up special. The imprint that he left behind is quite obvious.

But Rich ain't on this list for being funny, though he was VERY funny. He's on this list because he was that rare humorist who spoke the truth, consequences be damned. If you care to watch enough Comedy Central late at night, you'll see dozens of comedians who make hacky observations ("why don't they make the whole plane out of the same stuff as the little black box?"), dumb racial jokes just to be controversial (anything Mencia's ever done on the topic), or doing the same bit for years and years (Pablo Francisco, that movie preview guy bit was hilarious, but you've been doing it for going on ten years now). Richard Pryor did none of these things. His stuff was always sharp and insightful-- "Yeah, Jack, the vampires don't like to see crucifxes. I hear their allergic to bullshit."-- his racial humor had a point-- his observations about the push to get Vietnamese orphans adopted ended "Shit we have 3 millions niggers here that need to get adopted."-- and he kept his stuff fresh.

By fresh, I mean REALLY fresh and personal. In 1980, Pryor set himself on fire and ran down the street screaming, engulfed in flames, and ended up suffering severe burns all over his body. It isn't quite clear whether this happened as an accident while free-basing cocaine, or whether it was a botched suicide attempt, but either way it was BAD. When Pryor did his last stand-up show, he waved a lit match in front of him calling it "Richard Pryor running down the street." He also observed that "When you're running down the street on fire, people get out of your way."

I close with a quote by Former Kennedy Center President Lawrence J. Wilker on awarding Pryor the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor:

Richard Pryor was selected as the first recipient of the new Mark Twain Prize because as a stand-up comic, writer, and actor, he struck a chord, and a nerve, with America, forcing it to look at large social questions of race and the more tragicomic aspects of the human condition. Though uncompromising in his wit, Pryor, like Twain, projects a generosity of spirit that unites us. They were both trenchant social critics who spoke the truth, however outrageous.

Next on the list, #72, the Father of Our Country. Yes, I WILL be putting some legitimately great human beings on this list.

Friday, April 20, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #74 Hulk Hogan


If those words don't excite you.... well you're obviously well younger than I am and/or not a dude. Terry Bollea, (d/b/a Hulk Hogan) is undoubtedly THE biggest star in the history of professional (that is, "fake") wrestling. And once upon a time, children, wrestling was HUGE.

Hulk Hogan, along with maybe The Rock, absolutely transcended wrestling and became a huge popular culture icon, literally and figuratively. He was Thunderlips in Rocky III. Hogan was actually fired from the then WWF for appearing in the movie, even though it drew attention to him and, by extension, the WWF. Two years later, as Hogan had wrestled elsewhere and started his rise to the top of the grapplin' world, he was brought back to the WWF where he would become its biggest star.

Hulkamania ran wild. Hogan issued "demandments" of his fans, urging us to train, say our prayers, take our vitamins, and of course, believe in ourselves. Never mind that Hulk Hogan was using anabolic steroids at the time. He was a REAL AMERICAN! This all sounds very cheesy and a cynical part of me is kind of admonishing me for doing this post, but wrestling was inherently cheesy anyway, and this stuff was/is extremely entertaining, especially because it was so earnest.

A case in point was the Andre the Giant feud. They were known to be good friends, and were very close in real life, so this was used in a storyline where jealousy tore the good pals apart. Hogan and Andre were being honored in the ring and somehow Andre tore off Hogan's shirt and his crucifix, leaving Hogan shocked. The result was a match at Wrestlemania III where Hogan bodyslammed the 520-pound Frenchman (who really ought to get an honorable mention on this list, if only for his fantastic acting in The Princess Bride) in front of an estimated 93,000 people in the Silverdome in Detroit. Let that sink in. Ninety three thousand people.

People of a certain age will remember how big Hogan was. His career spanned four decades and people my age will remember those Hulk Hogan dolls and his feud with the Ultimate Warrior. In retrospect, Hogan's career has been alot like the Terminator-- he just keeps coming back for more, and just when you think he's done for, he gets up and becomes huge again. His VH1 reality show, which is unbelievably entertaining, Hogan Knows Best, proves just that. The man is an incredible showman, and has had an amazing run. Huzzah for Terry Bollea.

Next on the List of the 100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived, the greatest and funniest stand up comic of all time. Now how's THAT for a teaser?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #75 Napoleon Bonaparte

Le Petit Corporal is an inspiration to short, insecure men everywhere. Napoleon Bonaparte was probably history's greatest general and actually made France(!) a world power to be reckoned with. Some would argue that Napoleon actually hastened the demise of France and her decline to second-rate bitch of Germany and later, the UK and US. Some might even say that Napoleon might just have been the first domino to fall in an unstoppable chain of events that led directly to the First World War and, by extension, Hitler, the Holocaust, the Second World War, and the Soviet occupation of Eastern Europe.

Still, Napoleon Bonaparte made a meaningful impact on French and European history one way or the other and the rest of Europe was scared so shitless of him, that they couldn't even put him in prison on the continent or even just execute him out of fear of making him a martyr. Instead they sent him to a little island off the coast of Tuscany called Elba. And then he came back to France and famously was met by a Royalist French army. Approaching the Fifth Regiment alone, he dismounted from his horse, tore his shirt open, offering his breast as a target and shouted, "Soldiers of the Fifth, you recognize me. If any man would shoot his emperor, he may do so now." Some shouted "Vive L'Empereur!" and he took over the damn country by acclimation. Soon thereafter, following his famous defeat at Waterloo, the British were so scared of Napoleon that they exiled him to friggin' St. Helena. Do you have any idea how far away St. Helena is? It's off the coast of central Africa. Go look at the map. And this was in the 19th century, before Phileas Fogg traveled 'round the world in 80 days.

Furthermore Napoleon wasn't really French. He was Corsican, which was more like Italian than French. So ultimately Napoleon doesn't lose points on this list for being French, but actually gains some for overcoming difficult odds and anti-immigrant discrimination and all that.

Also Napoleon liked to eat pussy. Alot, apparently. He liked to whistle in the wheat fields, sit down for a box lunch, bob for clams, and guest lecturing at Beaver College. To wit, some excerpts from his letters to Josephine, courtesy of PBS, of all places:

  • A kiss on your heart, and one much lower down, much lower!
  • I am going to bed with my heart full of your adorable image… I cannot wait to give you proofs of my ardent love… How happy I would be if I could assist you at your undressing, the little firm white breast, the adorable face, the hair tied up in a scarf a la creole. You know that I will never forget the little visits, you know, the little black forest… I kiss it a thousand times and wait impatiently for the moment I will be in it. To live within Josephine is to live in the Elysian fields. Kisses on your mouth, your eyes, your breast, everywhere, everywhere.
Next on the List, #74 reminds you to train hard, say your prayers, take your vitamins, be true to yourself, be true to your country, and, of course, be a Real American.

Monday, April 16, 2007


So I trekked out to Harvard Medical School to participate in some study involving virtual reality surgery teaching technology. It was a simulation of laparoscopic surgery. Basically the surgeon makes two small incisions and then inserts the instruments and proceeds to do the surgery and fiddling around with your insides while watching in real time on a monitor with the aid of fiber optic technology. Sounds really fascinating, right? My task was basically to match up some arrows in a three-dimensional space by picking them up with these instruments and moving them around. Except these arrows don't actually exist. They only exist on the tv screen in front of me.

It was basically me and another guy. The other guy finished in like twenty minutes. Me? I was 30% done when the software timed out about an hour and half in. So yeah. Things we've learned:

  • Surgeons are gods among men.
  • I cannot and never will be the dudes from Nip/Tuck. But maybe House.
  • Performing surgery is an incredibly specialized physical talent that is not merely a function of intellectual capacity and those guys deserve the money they get paid.
  • Also being a doctor is really hard and mad props to both of my readers at Vanderbilt Medical School. Much love to both of you.

If you're a Harvard student and are interested in participating in this study, let me know in the comment section and I will hook you up with the people in charge.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

In the Spirit of the Stan Lee Post....

I know this video has made the rounds, but even if you've never seen it a thousand times, much like the Leeroy Jenkins video, gets better with age.... Oh and the audio is NSFW.

Friday, April 13, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #76 Stan Lee

Greetings, True Believers! We now reach the Greatest Human Being Ever to Live and Be Involved in the Comic Book Business, Mr. Stan Lee. Yes Superman is certainly the biggest icon of popular culture to emerge from comic books, and everyone does seem to love the Dark Knight, but the cultural and social impact that the creations of Stan Lee have had are almost immeasurable. To wit, an abridged list of characters Stan Lee either created or was a co-creator of:

  • Spider-man
  • The Fantastic Four
  • The Incredible Hulk
  • Iron-Man
  • The X-Men
  • Thor
  • Dr. Strange
  • Daredevil
  • Striperella
Okay, so maybe he shouldn't be so proud of that last accomplishment, but still. That is an impressive list. What's more impressive is that he actually had a social conscience in writing these titles. He famously defied the Comics Code's ban on doing stories involving drug use when he did a Spider-man story where Spidey's best friend acquites a pill problem. Doing so caused the tight-asses at the Comic Book Authority to loosen the hell up and comic books are probably better off for it. Lee also neglected to condescend to his readers, using sophisticated vocabulary in his stories and responding to critics of this practice by saying, "If a kid has to go to a dictionary that's not the worst thing that could happen."

What's more, Stan's creations are all pretty deep and meaningful, especially considering how shallow and pulpy comic books tended to be up to that point. Spider-man is an angsty teenager, dealing with the death of his uncle. The Incredible Hulk tackles some of our worst nightmares about the dangers of nuclear radiation. And the X-men is an absolutely transparent allegory of the struggle for civil rights with Professor X and Magneto cast in the roles of Martin and Malcolm respectively. I think X-Men in particular continues to speak to people today, especially as we have right-wing, Evangelical Christian lunatics running around casting aspersions on gay people. Think of some of the anti-mutant rhetoric by some of the baddies in the old X-Men books and just substitute "fag" for "mutant" and I think you'll find that Lee could very well have been writing about gay people in the 21st Century.

But when I think of Stan Lee, I think most fondly to his extended cameo in the Kevin Smith classic, Mallrats. To this day, I, like Brodie, continue to wonder, is the Thing's dork REALLY made out of that rocky stuff or not?

The 75th Greatest Human Being Who Ever Lived was one of history's greatest generals. And he also apparently REALLY loved to eat pussy, too.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #77 Sylvester Stallone

"STALLONE???? You're putting Stallone on the list?" Yes, Grorxy, I am. Sylvester Stallone may be the most misunderestimated famous person this side of George W. Bush. Yes, alot of Stallone movies have sucked donkey balls. I come here not to praise Rocky V, Over the Top, or Stop, or My Mom Will Shoot!, but to bury... I mean praise Stallone himself. He was an 80s icon, on par with the current Governor of California (I still can't believe that Arnie is actually Governor; sometimes I have to pinch myself to make sure I'm not dreaming!) as an action star. As Arnold himself says about Sly in that classic film, Last Action Hero, "The man is an artist. It's his best performance ever!" Of course he was talking about an alternate universe where Sly plays the Terminator in Judgement Day, but that's neither here nor there.

People think of Sly Stallone as a retard with a speech impediment. Yes, he does in fact have a speech impediment. So what? But the man is not retarded. Let's remember that he did actually write Rocky AND First Blood, the former of which won the Academy Award for Best Picture and the latter of which was actually a really touching and profound film that spoke volumes about how we as a society treated Vietnam vets (by the way, that bit about First Blood is absolutely sincere; if you don't believe me, pop that sucker in the DVD player and actually think about it).

Rocky is easily his most important film, not just because it spawned five sequels, but because it basically served as the prototype for every sports movie to come since. The story of an underdog who gets his shot at the champ is an absolute cliche now but when the original Rocky came out, that was not yet the case. What's more is that the original film isn't trite at all. Instead of having some unbelievable sequence of events where Rocky wins the belt (Sly wisely saved this for the deuce) Rocky realizes right before the big fight at the end of the film that he can't possibly beat Apollo, and decides then and there that his goal is simply to have the courage and wherewithal to endure and go the distance with the best fighter in the world. The message of Rocky is universal-- we may not all have the talent of an Apollo Creed, but even the least among us can perservere and triumph in the face of adversity.

Also Sly single-handedly ended the Cold War. I hate to rip off Bill Simmons here, but it's true, it's damn true. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, you probably haven't seen Rocky IV. Go see it, though preferably NOT while you're high. Yes, you know I'm looking at you over there in the corner. Don't do that again. Okay that was a reference that like ONE reader will get.

Next time, we'll meet the 76th Greatest Human Being Who Ever Lived. See you soon, True Believers!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #78 James Caan

James Caan, most famous for playing Sonny Corleone, is the 78th Greatest Human Being Who Ever Lived. I could write up a really long post about how awesome The Godfather is, but I think I'll save that for the Al Pacino post a little further up the list (you didn't think HE wouldn't make the cut did you?).

Instead, I will regale you with a personal anecdote. Once upon a time, when I was working at the front desk of a rather swank hotel on Miami Beach, I was attending to some guest and was having a hard time pulling up her reservation. Her last name was something like Cafferty or Cary. It doesn't matter exactly what except that the name began "Ca." The way the software we used was written, when you searched for a last name, you would just punch in the first two or three letters and it would methodically eliminate all reservations that did not match. So I punch in "Ca" and two reservations are remaining-- the guest at hand and one reservation for Mr. James Caan.

Now normally we would hear about VIPs like this if they were coming in BEFORE the shift started, but we heard nothing of the sort that day so at first I thought this was merely a coincidence. I checked the reservation (the guest was still standing there thinking I was working on her problem, by the way. Why yes, front desk people at hotels ARE snarky assholes!) and indeed it was THAT James Caan, as it had all kinds of special VIP-type notes attached.

I finally helped the guest and then ran to my supervisor and excitedly showed him the reservation, pointing out that this was Sonny FUCKING Corleone! So after a few minutes of giggling like school girls, we each return to doing our jobs. About an hour goes by, and I had sort of forgotten about the whole thing, and I'm checking my email. I finish and look up and standing there checking in with the person right next to me, is James Caan. And he is NOT alone. He's with (I shit you not) George Hamilton, and about six peroxide blondes who were clearly.... on the job, if you will.

So Mr. Caan checks in, goes up to his room, and aforementioned supervisor and I rush to the computer to see if they've ordered any pay-per-view programming (See what I said about hotel people being assholes? They also don't care for your privacy, especially if you're a celebrity!) Indeed, they had almost immediately ordered something called Rod Riders 7. So yes, basically there was an orgy going on involving James Caan and George Hamilton in the hotel. Needless to say this was extremely amusing.

Finally, toward the end of the evening, in one of the more shameless episodes of flaunting of celebrity and wealth I have ever personally witnessed that did not involve a Bentley and spinning rims, Caan walks through the lobby of the hotel with a blonde on each of his arms without a care in the world, as the people around him gawked and wondered, "Is that REALLY Sonny Corleone?" I think one person approached him for an autograph, a request he graciously fulfilled while his female companions were in the restroom.

Next on the list, the man who single-handedly ended the Cold War, because if I can change and you can change, then maybe we ALL can change....

Monday, April 9, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: #79 Wacko Jacko

People tend to forget this, but there really was a time when Michael Jackson wasn't just some self-loathing weirdo child molester with Peter Pan syndrome, but was actually THE biggest musical star on the planet. Really. This actually happened, youngsters. Admittedly, I am barely old enough to remember that really cool "Black or White" video with the morphing people (a sequence which featured a then unknown Tyra Banks, an appearance that in retrospect looks glaringly like a cameo, but isn't really), a video that really marked the beginning of the end for the King of Pop. Still, I think people forget the impact that this dude had on culture.

Thriller was, until the Eagles released their Greatest Hits album, THE best selling album of all time. To date, it has sold 27 million copies. That's platinum 27 times over kids. By RIAA standards this means it's double, and almost triple, diamond. This is absolutely absurd. Yes, I know, popular does not always equal good. I mean, Mariah Carey's The Emancipation of Mimi went platinum a few times over. And she's awful.

So don't take the word of 27 million units sold and just listen to the record. You will be extremely hard pressed to find a better album, top to bottom. Not only is there NOT a single bad song on that record, but every song is good to classic. "Billy Jean", "Wanna Be Startin Something", "Beat It" and, of course the title track, "Thriller."

It's easy to forget that if Michael Jackson was not quite the inventor of the music video, he certainly revolutionized the concept. Just think of where we'd be without that "Thriller" video. My cousin, who was about fifteen around the time Thriller came out, went out and bought that damn red jacket from the video. This is how cool Michael Jackson was.

At the end of the day, I think the best way to describe the life of Wacko Jacko is surreal. It is absolutely surreal to believe now in retrospect that Michael Jackson was ever popular, and it probably would have been almost as surreal had you been told in 1984 that he'd be a pariah at the turn of the century. The man is like a character out of Shakespeare... who happens to have a predilection for young boys.

Next on the list, coming in at #78, the man that Barzini and Carlo set up at the toll plaza on the Jones Beach Causeway...

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: 89-80, Non-English Speaking Foreigners Who Amuse Me

The list continues...

89. Dikembe Mutombo - Perhaps the greatest shot-blocker in the history of the NBA, Mutombo has done tons of charity stuff benefiting Africa and was even paid tribute by President Bush in the State of the Union speech this year. Of course, if you have even a passing interest/knowledge about this blog/list, you know that this is not the reason he made the list. Two main reasons: 1) his famous finger wag, which has apparently been grandfathered in so that it doesn't count as taunting under the new league rules and 2) the story circulating the internets about his days at Georgetown. Apparently, he would walk into bars, being the Big Man on Campus and all, and would loudly announce/ask "WHO WANTS TO SEX MUTOMBO?"

88. Gert Frobe - He played the titular character in Goldfinger, arguably the best/most memorable Bond villain ever. Apparently the producers hired him sight unseen and when he arrived it was found that his English was utterly unfucking intelligible. They had to dub his lines over in post-production with somebody else. Also he got sucked out of an airplane window in one of the most ridiculous deaths in cinematic history. Oh I'm sorry did I just spoil the movie for you? Too bad.

87. Johnathan Ke Quan - "YOU CHEAT DOCTA JONES! YOU CHEAT!" Admittedly, it's a love-hate relationship with the kid who played Short Round. But c'mon man. He was in Temple of Doom AND he was Data in The Goonies.

86. Paul Verhoeven - Okay I know. I'm playing fast and loose with "non-english speaking foreigners" but Verhoeven belongs here. If you've ever seen him in interviews you know that he is a manic Dutchman, but he has also made such (camp?) classics as Total Recall, Robocop, and Starship Troopers. I hear Robocop is HUGE in Brazil. Would you like to know more?

85. Magnus Grimeland - I promised someone people I have interacted with or who are not explicitly famous somehow would not be on The List. Magnus Grimeland will be the lone exception to this rule. Although I don't know him per se, I have interacted with him on a couple of occasions at the library and we will graduate in the same class in Harvard Yard on June 7. Anyway, Magnus ran for Vice-President of the Undergraduate Council at Harvard but that's not nearly as cool as the fact that he was a member of the Norwegian special forces. Which is pretty damn cool. Anyway, some time last year, they had a screening of Jaws in a University swimming pool (i.e. the movie was on a big screen while the kids were in the pool). To ensure safety, Magnus spent the two hours at the bottom of the pool patrolling in SCUBA gear. That my friend, gets you on the list.

84. Gerard Depardieu - Quite possibly the worst actor ever, at least in English, he gets points for playing a very dorky character in Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet who gets sent to spy on Laertes. He's also been in such classics as Green Card and.... actually that's it. Also he is apparently the favorite actor and close personal friend of .... Fidel Castro. What the fuck???? Actually you know what? Fuck Gerard Depardieu. He's an asshole. In his place is another Frenchman....

84. Cyrano de Bergerac - Before you complain that he's fictional, I remind you that the play was based on a real-person who was pretty awesome. If you haven't read it,you definitely should. It's my favorite play not written by Shakespeare and everyone should read it. I will move on but first a quote from a former Hialeah High football coach who once remarked "Cyrano de Bergerac... yeah there was a guy who was really popular with the ladies. They loved to sit on his face."

83. Harold Sakata - It's Oddjob! Yes, he blew a fuse. And yes, that's two characters from Goldfinger. Which is an awesome movie. What's that? This is a copout? Fuck you! YOU put together a list of ten foreigners who amuse you....

82. Takeru Kobayashi - While some people might find this horrifying, I find it extremely amusing that we live in a world where people starve while some Japanese guy can put away 97 Krystals hamburgers in one contest and 53 and a half hot dogs in another. He is currently the reigning champion of hot dog eating at the Coney Island thing. I once saw him vomit on national television. Grotesque? Yes. Amusing? Even more so.

81. Pat Morita - Mr. Miyagi! People forget but he was nominated for an Oscar for being in The Karate Kid and.... what do you mean he born in California? You mean he's AMERICAN? Uhmm well that's embarassing....

80. Desi Arnaz - Yes this is borderline racial/ethnic favoritism, but Desi Arnaz was on the funniest sitcom ever and his "Lucy you have some 'splaining to do" gets quoted back at me almost every time that I tell someone outside of Florida that I'm Cuban. So because of Desi Arnaz, I can tell racist assholes apart from everyone else. For that he makes this list.

Okay so the list begins in earnest after this, with a man who has a dream. A dream of a 50 foot tall robot replica of himself wandering the Las Vegas-area desert shooting laser beams everywhere....

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived: 100-90, The Pantheon of Internet Celebrities

Long over due, here is the beginning of The List of the 100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived beginning with #100, and introducing the Pantheon of Internet Celebrities. I defined "Internet Celebrities" as people who would not otherwise be known at all, either for writing, performing something, or having a website or blog. Where possible, I have included links. Here we go....

100. Numa Numa Kid- When Al Gore invented the internet sometime in the 1970s, he could not possibly have foreseen the development of the phenomenon of random people making videos of themselves sitting in front of their computers, lip-synching to random songs. Numa Numa Kid is the standard-bearer for this phenomenon and if you haven't seen this utterly bizarre video, well then you really just don't know much about the internet do you?

99. The Big Man, a. k. a. The Kid from Brooklyn- If you've ever sat through an episode of the Sopranos, you have almost certainly said to yourself, "Do people like this REALLY exist?" The answer is, apparently, "YES" in all caps. Similar to the aforementioned phenomenon of people singing/lip-synching in front of their desktops, there is also the "lunatics yelling/pontificating/editorializing about things in front of a webcam." The Big Man, who recently had to start charging people to watch his video, and then apologized for having to do so, is a pretty stereotypical loud New Yorker who expresses boisterous, often moronic , but almost always entertaining opinions about just about everything. He is also the first of many people on this list that I will classify as "batshit insane."

98. The Brothers Chaps, Homestarrunner.com- Yes, Strong Bad isn't as funny as he used to be. But these guys run kind of contrary to the whole idea that the internet is anarchy and everything on there is pure filth, utterly commercialized, or just crap. While their site is certainly anarchic, they have somehow managed to keep it clean, pretty good, and have kept out advertising by selling products that people actually want to buy. Right now you can help keep the site afloat by buying t-shirts or even action figures. I think it's pretty cool that they thought a little outside the box and have managed to keep the site going without resorting to asking for donations or selling ads. Huzzah for them!

97. MySpace Tom- I have to admit that even though I do have a MySpace, I am not a big fan, especially not when I get friend requests from people I don't know or people who are clearly promoting their amateur porno websites. But the fact is that MySpace ended up going on the market to Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp for more than half a BILLION dollars and made MySpace Tom and company incredibly wealthy. Now there is apparently some controversy about whether Tom is actually a "co-founder" or whatever. Doesn't matter. Tom is EVERYONE'S friend on there and is a bona fide internet celebrity. I can only imagine how much ass this gets him.

96. Matt Drudge- Alright he's kind of a sleazy scumbag with a gawdawful radio show. And his website is pretty drab and often reports unreliable stories that govholes frequently link to in orgasmic delight whenever he puts something on there that confirms said govholes' world view. So yes, Matt Drudge is an asshole in a fedora. But let's not forget that Matt Drudge broke the Lewinsky story nine years ago and helped to bring about one of the most surreal and, frankly, entertaining political events in recent history. Let's give the man some credit for at least that much.

95. Star Wars Kid- This kid got made fun of on Arrested Development. I don't think there's anything for me to add beyond that. Except that he's apparently some Quebecois who taped himself fooling around after school, and somehow the tape got out onto the Information Superhighway causing him much embarassment. Poor kid.

94. Bill Simmons, a.k.a. the Sports Guy, formerly the Boston Sports Guy- Yes, he jumped the shark a while ago, and isn't really as funny as he used to be, but let's consider the following: He started out as a nobody, an aspiring writer who was just very funny and managed to parley his own little website into a gig as probably the best writer not named Peter Gammons at the World Wide Leader in Sports. Also he recently inked a deal with the folks at Bristol to work on programming. That is pretty impressive if you ask me.

93. Will Leitch, Deadspin.com- He is the editor of the best and funniest sports blog on the internet. If you don't agree with me on that, I will fight you. And that's no lie.

92. Max Goldberg, YTMND.com- When he put up this simple page, he changed the world. It helped bring about a huge website with its own culture and inside references and fads. ytmnd.com is a great way to waste time that you don't have, and can be extremely entertaining at its best, and absolutely baffling at other times (though those two are hardly mutually exclusive).

91. Ryan North, Dinosaur Comics- With all due respect to the Perry Bible Fellowship, Penny Arcade, or Red Meat, Dinosaur Comics is the best strip on the web. I would say more, but I think the strip speaks for itself. If you've never seen it, check it out.

90. Leeeeeeeeroy Jenkins- The Greatest Human Being Who is an Internet Celebrity Who Ever Lived is the voice behind quite possibly the funniest video I have ever seen on the internet. For the record, I have never in my life played World of Warcraft, and this video STILL puts me in stitches. In fact, I'm gonna just go ahead and embed it here.

Next time, 89-80, Non-English Speaking Foreigners Who Amuse Me! Stay tuned!

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The 100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived

At the behest of one of my close personal friends, I have been asked to put together an admittedly arbitrary and silly list of the 100 Greatest Human Beings Who Ever Lived. I will unveil it slowly over the next few weeks (months? year?) in descending order beginning with 100-90. I will do the first twenty, ten at a time. The bottom ten of the list will be coming soon, but just to get you started, some comments as to who will NOT be on the list--

  • Jesus Jesus will not be on the list. Jesus is boring, trite, and I'm not even 100 percent sure there was such a person. Jesus was kind of an asshole, and if you don't believe me, read the Bible. Jesus sucks. The same can be said for Muhammad, Moses, the Pope(s), Buddha and assorted other religious figures. They're boring and there are infinitely many people who are more awesome than they are/were. Including just about everyone I know.
  • Mother Teresa Mother Teresa was a cunt. There. I said it. Yes, I know Mother Teresa was supposed to be, well, a saint. But that's a lie. Mother Teresa was an awful person who, for religious reasons, caused and encouraged suffering because it helped her "get closer to Jesus." See above comments on Jesus. She also took money from the Duvaliers from Haiti, who would probably be on the opposite of this list. For context, the Duvaliers had basically stolen that money from poor people in Haiti. So basically that bitch took money from poor people in Haiti, and used it to help poor people elsewhere. Oh no, wait. She actually used something like eighty percent of the money she raised to propogate religion, rather than relieve suffering. Happily, last I checked, she is, in fact, still dead.
  • Gandhi Okay don't get me wrong. Gandhi was a pretty cool dude, who had some good ideas and stood up to the British. But he was also a racist who was into enemas. Which is pretty creepy. Also Gandhi took pacifism to morally untenable extremes. If you read Sam Harris' excellent book The End of Faith, you will read that Gandhi advocated pacifism as a response to Nazis. I wish I were making this up. He basically said that the Jewish response to the Holocaust would have been mass suicide in protest. Sorry Gandhi. To be on this list, you need balls. Or guts in the case of the one lady who makes the list.
  • Nelson Mandela I'm tired of hearing about Nelson Mandela. Apartheid was horrible. I am not in anyway being flippant about that. Having said that, Nelson Mandela is an asshole. He has buddied around Havana with Castro and called the late terrorist/scumbag Yassir Arafat a "comrade in arms." Yes, Nelson, you spent a lot of years in jail for standing up to an illegitimate tyranny. That's awesome. Now have a little bit of respect for the thousands of Cubans who have had to flee the island, the Cubans who have themselves been imprisoned or even executed for dissent, and the thousands who continue to suffer under a repressive regime that limits personal and economic freedoms. You turd.
Well that just about does it for this post. Coming soon the countdown begins, 100-90, the Pantheon of Internet Celebrities.

Monday, March 12, 2007

What a coincidence! My life ambition also involves dropping out of school and going on Girls Gone Wild !

Maury used to be just another guy with a daytime talk show, with his only distinguishing characteristic being that he was Mr. Connie Chung. Somewhere along the way, and it wasn't an overnight thing either, he slowly started to sell out and became even worse than Jerry Springer's show. I think it started with the whole "sending bad kids to boot camp" shows and then progressed to the paternity tests. I thought the paternity tests, entertaining as they were, were really scraping the bottom of the barrel. Then I saw this on YouTube...

Wow. Congratulations, Mr. Povich. You officially have the trashiest show on television.

Monday, February 26, 2007

What do Anna Nicole Smith, James Brown, and Jesus Christ all have in common?

If James Cameron is to be believed, Jesus of Nazareth is, in fact still dead. Cameron has made a Discovery Channel movie about finding some caskets with the names Joseph, Jesus, Mary, and Mary in a cave somewhere near Jerusalem. Frankly, I find the whole thing amusing. There's no way to prove that the caskets do in fact belong to THE Jesus from the Bible, but I do think it's always entertaining to watch Christians squirm and get agitated about anything that challenges their patently absurd beliefs. Some of the comments on the Time/CNN blog are priceless.

Posted by Diana Manwaring
February 24, 2007

I don't buy this heresy for one minute. After I heard about this, I did some digging and found that Cameron and Jacobovici produced a documentary that claimed the Exodus actually occurred. I, as a believer, already knew that.

So, this raises an important question. If Cameron and Jacobovici believe in the Exodus, how could they NOT believe in the Resurrection? How could they accept part of Scripture, but not all of it? They're speaking out of both sides of their mouths.

I have had an interest in archaeology for a number of years, especially Biblical archaeology. People need to be aware of a number of facts, including that the names of Jesus, Joseph, Mary, etc, were very common at that time. How could they possibly claim that whatever inscriptions are on these coffins belong to the Holy Family?

This appears to be a great deception.....and I don't buy it for one minute.


Thank you, Diana Manwaring, for letting the world know that you are, in fact, a retard. Lest anyone think that I am drawing broad conclusions from one post, I kindly refer you to several other posts where she uses the same kind of twisted, circular logic that most people abandon after they leave the fifth grade.

To answer your question, Diana, as some others have attempted to do so in the link above, when a single document makes x number of claims, just because one claim, which we will call claim A, is proven to be true, that does not therefore make ALL claims true. Particularly when Claim A involves a mass migration of a huge number of people and Claim R is the unfuckingbelievable claim that some dude was dead for a while and then, suddenly, stopped being dead three days later. As Carl Sagan used to say, before he, like Jesus, died and stayed that way, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. This is further made true by the unknown and undoubtedly high number of independent authors who contributed to make up what we collectively call today, Scripture or "The Bible."

If anyone is interested Cameron's movie is set to premier on the Discovery Channel on Sunday at nine. Unless of course some Christian assholes decide to boycott advertisers and pressure Discovery into chickening out on us.