Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Today in marketable skills...

Hang on hang on hang on. Look, I don't have any particular beef with Mark Wahlberg but-huh? Oh, well I don't have any beef with him as an actor, there was that incident. Anyway, I mention my Wahlberg-neutral stance, because I don't think he's the best actor in the world.
I'm not even convinced he's the best actor in this scene...
Marky Mark, seen here with the
Funky Bunch made $68 million for acting.
Let that sink in. $68 million. Of money.
He is however the highest-paid actor in the world having made $68 million last year according to Forbes' list of baffling priorities in the film industry. Yeah, $68 million. With an 'm' which, while not a 'b' is still a ridiculous shit-load of money. And this absurd sum is, in part, thanks to his work on Transformers: The Last Knight, and while I didn't see it is almost certainly objective garbage going by the quality of the last twelve or thirteen entires in the series. Wahlberg also narrowly beat out Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson at $65 million.

But what I want to know is what kind of a world do we live in where three million dollars is a narrow gap? And furthermore, what kind of world is it where a rapper and a wrestler are the top two highest paid actors in the world? Shouldn't they be off rapping and wrestling respectively?
Oh, right, it's exactly this world.
Pffft...doctors...they just cut people open
and perform complicated surgical procedures.
So again, nothing against these actors as people, but are they paid so much because they can act or because they're Mark Wahlberg and Dwane Johnson? Like professional football players, some of whom make two Wahlbergs a year, they presumably have a quality that's sufficiently rare as to warrant crazy town amounts of money but is that quality acting or is it being famous? I guess what I'm getting at is, is this a list of the highest paid actors or the highest paid famous people who repeat words other people wrote while someone else films them? I don't know, am I making a valid point or just describing what film actors do?

Maybe I'm just being a snob (definitely), here sniping from the box about things I know nothing about and could never do myself. And of course, this isn't a list of the most talented actors, it's a list of the highest paid actors, but it just seems like acting ability should factor in a bit more. Like, say, at all.
Pictured: Basically me. Huh? Which one?
I don't know, probably Waldorf? 
While technically a subjective question,
the answer is objectively no, in no way.
And let's not even talk about the gender pay-gap. Wait, no, let's totally talk about the gender pay-gap, because that's even more disheartening. Emma Stone is the highest paid woman on the list at #15 with $26 million last year. For perspective, which clearly is not something anyone involved in making movies is interested in anymore, Adam Sandler, #4 on the list, made nearly double that with $50.5 million. Now you have to ask yourself, is Adam Sandler's acting ability, at any point in his career, worth twice that of Emma Stone?

Above: basically a unicorn.
According to Forbes, the disparity is because superhero movies were big last year and those tend to be sausage fests and as a result there just weren't very many roles for women, but of the top ten I think only Robert Downey Jr. and Vin Diesel were in superhero movies last year so...bullshit? I'll agree that there's totally not enough roles for women, but suggesting that America's love of formulaic, CGI-heavy, mindless, explode-a-thons is the reason women have been getting short changed seems disingenuous.

Anyway, regardless of my assessment of Adam Sandler's talent as an actor and where I think the blame for pay-disparity really lies, $68 million seems like too much money to hand any one person who's only unique skill is being Mark Wahlberg.
Don't look at me like that. You get paid millions of dollars to
co-star with Optimus goddamn Prime. I do not feel sorry for you.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Exactly zero lessons learned.

So would you mind if I took a step back from the serious and soul-crushing reality of our national political shitshow and complained about something nerdy? Like, really nerdy? Great. Ok, go find a Hot Topic, buy one of those belts made out of a game pad and then buckle it. You know, because 'buckle your nerd belt' is a thing I like to say before launching into a particularly nerdy topic.
On second thought, don't do that. Those things
are ridiculous. Also, knock it off with the blousing. 
Resellers are objectively the worst
people on the entire internet which
I think is saying a lot.
Remember a ways back when I expressed my befuddlement at the way Nintendo handled the release of the NES Classic? You don't? Well I did. To sum up, they figured they'd sell like a hundred of them and manufactured about that many, so when it came out and everyone in the world wanted one they sold out in actual seconds. Some were bought by fans, but a significant portion of them were snatched up by resellers who turned around and offered them on Amazon or Ebay for like 3-5 times the original price because they are the worst.

"It's just our little way of saying
'fuck you' to our loyal fans."

-Nintendo, apparently
It was a goat rodeo and left a lot of gamers feeling seriously burned by Nintendo, the retailers and, of course, the resellers who are the worst. The worst. Anyway, Nintendo announced the Super NES Classic and promised they'd make more this time and that they'd be available for pre-order late this month. Neat, I'm in. The problem is that by 'late this month' it seems they meant 'late at night at some random point in the month with no warning whatsoever' and that random point was today. At like two in the morning for those of us on the west coast. You know, when we're sleeping and not buying shit online. Just the middle of the night, blink and you'll miss it, no heads up, not even if you signed up for the email notification.

In fact, I think I'd feel better
paying them not to include it.
You know who is online at two in the morning? Bots. Little programs resellers use to automatically buy up hard to find items the instant they become available so they can turn around and make you pay for the privilege of buying something from internet parasites. Almost as bad are some of the retailers who will only sell the things as bundles, meaning if you want an $80 SNES Classic you're going to have to give them $200 for the SNES and a bunch of tchotchkes you totally don't want. It's an increasingly common practice and I think it's supposed to discourage resellers who don't want all the extra crap eating up their profit margin, but I don't want a Street Fighter II Ryu statue either so...

Which, look, I'm a grown-ass adult with a job and a life, and I'll somehow find a way to carry on, but holy shit Nintendo. How, how could you fuck this up so badly. Again. You know, five or six more times getting burned like this and I might think about considering maybe not giving you money for the same half-dozen games again. Maybe.
Aw...but it's so tiny and adorable...fine...just...just tell me
what I have to do to get one. I will do anything. Anything...

Monday, August 21, 2017

Thanks clouds...thanks for nothing.

Hey, did you enjoy today's temporary distraction from the ceaseless shit-parade that is the news? You did? Was it amazing? I wouldn't know because clouds. So thank you clouds, because of you I stayed inside and read the internet.
"Thanks to this administration, today's eclipse was the greatest eclipse ever in the history
of America. It's so great, nobody's even talking about my support for white supremacists
Why'd I even say that? That's just fake news made up by a very dishonest media."

-The President, while looking
directly at the sun
Pfft...the Moon, like
it's so great...
So what's new in the world of things that aren't everyone's favorite natural satellite briefly plunging part of the planet into a soul-chilling darkness and reminding us that we are but insects clinging to a thin layer of rock and ocean with nothing but air between us and the endless void? Well, Sam Clovis, the President's choice for chief scientist for the Department of Agriculture thinks gayness is a choice and that LGBT protections are a precipice over which the nation will plummet, landing smack in a pile of legalized pedophilia.

Pictured: Clovis, seen here cosplaying  
Mr. Mooney from The Lucy Show
So there's that. Here, check it out:

" far as we know, homosexuality is a choice..."

-Sam Clovis talking
completely out of his ass

Um. No. That's uh, what do you call it? A crock of horseshit? The quote came from his radio show, so maybe it's from an old episode? You know, like one from the 1950's-

"Women drivers? Next thing you know,
they'll want the vote. It's slippery slope."

-Sam Clovis*
-oh, nope, turns out CNN dug into his archives and found the quote and others like it from back in the early two thousand teens, so no, he's just a dick. He went on to bloviate at length about the old slippery slope argument:

"If we protect LGBT behavior, what other behaviors are we going to protect? Are we going to protect pedophilia? Are we going to protect polyamerous marriage relationships? Are we going to protect people who have fetishes? I mean, what's the logical extension of this?"

-Sam Clovis, out of his face-hole 

Oh don't give me that look, you
lept to the defense of actual Nazis.
The logical extension, or course, is shut up. Pedophilia? What is wrong with conservatives-ok, some conservatives-that any point of the spectrum of sexuality or gender identity they don't understand is one inevitable step away from pedophilia? I guess now that the administration is openly acknowledging their support for literal Nazis, they can no longer accuse their political enemies of being like Hitler, so now everyone they don't like is a pedophile. Oh, and speaking of Nazis, on his blog, Clovis also referred to progressives as race traitors. Super.

So raging homophobia, racism and zero qualifications as a scientist (spoiler: he's also a climate change denier) so yeah, it looks like the President has picked another winner.
Above: Sam Clovis, probably thinking about pedophiles.

*not an actual quote, but might as well be an actual quote.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Like, actual, literal Nazis?

You wouldn't think a hundred jackasses ranting in a park about how much they miss Hitler could possibly have an upside, but when the world has been an unceasing parade of horror, violence and awfulness, you take what you can get. And what you can get is a warm fuzzy about the fact that something like 40,000 people showed up in Boston today to protest an alt-right free speech rally at which an hilarious 100 people showed up.
Those numbers are of course estimates and there may have been some of those tarps leftover
from the inauguration
that made the alt-right's turn out look much lower. Goddamn tarps...
Also, Irish stuff and drinking.
(source: hackneyed jokes)
And while it might on the face of it sound wrong that 40,000 people showed up to protest free speech, it's not exactly that simple. Alt-right is code for white supremacist and the free speech they're so keen on is specifically the freedom to make speeches that call for things like exterminating non-white people. Because these guys are Nazis. Literal, actual Nazis. And Boston hates those guys. Like, wicked hahd. Go Sox. Oh, and to be clear, I don't actually care about sports, I just thought I'd toss in some Boston stereotypes.

Anyway, in a stunning move, the President whom you might recall lept to the defense of actual, literal Nazis just the other day, quickly took to twitter-after what I'm sure was a sufficient amount of time to gather the facts, something he cares deeply about, shut up, yes he does-where was I? Right, took to twitter to denounce the people protesting the actual, literal Nazis as anti-police agitators:
Is it possible he's just randomly pecking at the screen
and honestly doesn't know what he's saying? I'm not
saying that'd make me feel much better, but still...

Um...the 'SS' shirt on that guys shirt refers to
the Nazi military organization that carried out
the Holocaust. So yeah, literal fucking Nazis
What the shit? Anti-police agitators? Is he referring to the forty-thousand people who showed up to protest the Nazis that were goose-stepping around a park in Downtown Boston? Nazis who were gathering in a park in downtown Boston as a show of solidarity with other Nazis? One of whom drove a car into a crowd injuring 19 and killing a woman all because they think white guys have been getting a raw deal? In a country that just (electoral college-ly) elected the guy that made up that horseshit about Obama's birth certificate? That's the side Donald Trump is taking after a week of universal, world-wide, unanimous shaming?

Apparently yes. For about an hour and a half before tweeting his support for the protestors and saying that he'd like to applaud them for speaking out against hate and bigotry which is weird because they were anti-police agitators like, less than two hours earlier. Does he not know we can read his previous posts? Or does he just think we're all like, you know, stupid?
Well, we are increasingly coming together in the common desire
that Donald Trump wasn't the President anymore, so he's kind of right.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

But he knows these guys are Nazis, right?

"Ok, what about the alt-left charging at them. Do they have any semblance of guilt? Let me ask you this, what about the fact that they came charging, that they came charging with clubs in their hands swinging clubs. Do they have any problem? I think they do."

-Holy shit, the President
said this to reporters today
Pictured: The President giving what I'm sure will be remembered
as his, 'Sure, they're Nazis, but are they really all that bad?' speech.
Above: The scene earlier today.
Yeah, that's the technical winner of the electoral college and current President Donald Trump leaping to the defense of the white supremacists who marched last Saturday. One of whom murdered a woman in broad daylight. Also, the alt-left he's referring to isn't a thing and the fact that he thinks it is, is I think, a big part of the problem. With America I mean. But let's back up. Those bewildering, enraging remarks from the President were made earlier today at what can only be described as a goat rodeo of a press conference.

It started out being about permits and infrastructure, he had charts and everything. But then came a Q and A which quickly became about the deadly rally in Charlottesville which then settled in to become a shouting match about the President's delayed response.
The remarks were delivered at an audience at
Glorious Leader's Mighty Citadel in New York.
As everyone knows, President Quick Draw
McTwitterton has always been concerned
about giving measured, careful responses.
"...because I want to make sure when I make a statement that the statement is correct...I had to see the facts, unlike a lot of reporters (zing!)...It was very important-excuse me, excuse me. It was very important to me to get the facts out correctly...I want to make a statement with knowledge. I wanted to know the facts."

-The President, suddenly 
giving a shit about facts

Pictured: The President.
Not pictured: his shit, which
he lost earlier today.
When a reporter asked about Senator McCain's linking of the white supremacist group from Saturday's march to the alt-right, that's when Trump lost his shit and demanded that we all agree that there are two sides to the incident in Charlottesville which, ok, we do all agree that there were two sides, it's just that one of those sides are fucking Nazis so I'm not sure we care about their point of view here. Sorry, is that rude? Because, and I'm sorry to belabor the point, we're talking about fucking Nazis.

"In fact we do have doubt about just that."
-Most Americans

Anyway, here's some more of what he said-sorry, barked at reporters:

"You look at both sides, I think there's blame on both sides and I have no doubt about it and you don't have any doubt about it."

-Trump on how we should 
sit down and listen to 
both sides of the story

Also, it's the shortest month. We spend
more time celebrating ice-cream.
Yeah, ok, but one of those sides are white supremacists which brings us to what I think might be the underlying problem here. Yes, it's important to look at both sides of an issue, cool, but it's also important to understand that just because there are two sides, doesn't mean they're both coming from reasonable places or that both sides are equal. It's like when a white guy complains about how there's a Black History Month, but no white history month. He thinks he has a point, but really he's just being an asshole.

Just because white supremacists are rebranding themselves as the alt-right, doesn't mean that there's an equally extremist alt-left out there being just as awful, it just means that racists want to pretend that there's is just another, equally valid view point in the national conversation when really they're just a bunch of fucking Nazis.
Again, and sorry to harp on this, we're talking about
actual, fucking Nazis, literal Nazis. In America. 

Today in rooting for the overdog...

Ugh. I mean, ugh. Like, you wouldn't think we'd still have torch-wielding racists marching through the streets of American cities in 2017, but here we are.
Like I said, ugh...
"Just...just don't talk to me right now..."
Ok, maybe you would think that we'd still have torch-wielding racists marching through the streets in 2017. America, it turns out, is still super-racist, but there are a couple of things I don't get. Ok, lots I don't get, but I'm going to narrow it down to just the essentials. The first being, how are these guys the victims of racism? I'm not trying to diminish their plight here, but isn't a white American complaining about being the victim of racism a little like a man complaining about menstrual cramps?

While we cannot rule out the multi-
verse, it's just that the 'they're just assholes'
theory feels somewhat more plausible.
Look, I myself am a white person. A white male in fact. And while I can't speak for every white guy out there, I'm pretty sure that we've never been the victims of racism. Ever. In the history of the universe. Well, our universe maybe. I suppose it's possible, but not super-likely, that Saturday's white supremacists came to our world through a wormhole from some parallel universe where white people have been the victims of, rather than the perpetrators of centuries of oppression and inequality. And if that's the case, they need to put the tiki-torches down and shut up, because on this planet, they're just being assholes.

 You know, the Confederate General
who it's kind of weird that
he got a statue in the first place.
But I suppose the big question I have is what do they want? Ostensibly they all got together to protest the removal of some statue of noted defender of state's rights and owning people and making them work for no money, Robert E. Lee. They were pissed it was being removed and folded that in with simmering anger and some kind of weird 'white-men as the victims of political correctness' narrative and now three people are dead, nineteen more are injured and everything is terrible. Way to go guys.

So again, what did they hope to get out of this? To keep their stupid statue? A 10% discount at Denny's? What? Or...hey, you don't suppose that they thought everyone else might come around to their point of view do you? Like, they thought that if they put together a big stupid parade of idiots, we'd all just hop on board with the notion that white people are superior to everyone else, but also somehow disenfranchised?
"Look, we're not racists, we're just saying that our race is superior, and should have our
superiority recognized through special privileges, discounts and maybe a even our own diamond lane."
-that big parade of stupid idiots

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Today in grudging olive branches...

Hey Republi-friends, how's it going? Huh? Yes, I said Republi-friends. You see, I think there're some Republicans, maybe even a lot of them, who think the situation we find ourselves in is as fucked up as we do and I think it's time we work together to do something about it. What situation? Glad you asked.
Maybe he could say it again, but this time add:
"Hey Kim Jong Un, this is your face!" and then
he could crush an empty beer can with his hand.
Great job Mr. President, maybe you
could make fun of his haircut next?
Today, in what I'm becoming less and less convinced is an elaborate joke, electoral college-winner and technical President Trump mused that his recent comments about showing North Korea 'fire and fury like they've never seen' might not have been tough enough. Yes, the Tweet-happy man-baby our system of government somehow failed to screen out, just suggested that his insane poking of an unhinged dictator armed with nuclear weapons wasn't sufficiently reckless.

What? Why do you think Paul Ryan
always had to stand behind a podium when
he talked about the GOP health plan?
Look, I know I've been maybe a little less than kind towards the GOP in the past. I may, on more than on occasion, have suggested that some members of the party get sexually aroused by taking health care away from poor people, and I'm not necessarily apologizing for that. But we need to get together on this. We need to get together and figure out a way to either blunt the effects of Trump's terribleness at his job or cut some kind of deal where he resigns, we get a complete electoral do-over and we all agree that the last seven months of America never happened.

I'm not saying it's going to be easy to get enough of them to come around. Just today I read that more than half of Republicans polled would support postponing the election if Trump called for it. Postpone the 2020 election. Holy shit, alarming right? Yes. Pants-wettingly so.
You don't want the government taxing you, telling you what can be taught in science class or
who can use which bathroom but when someone asks if you want to make Donald Trump
your king, half of you are like, 'cool.' You see, this is why we don't understand you guys.
Pictured: Some of the millions of racists
who had to endure 8 years of being called
racists, just for being big huge racists.
I mean, can't they just wait until the GOP purges everyone who doesn't vote for them from the rolls? Sorry, sorry, that's not productive, we need to reach out and get along, you know, for the greater good. So to our Republi-freinds I say, yes, I know the Obama administration was like, super tough for you, what with his being a black, Kenyan-born secret Muslim who hated America, and I feel for you guys, I really do (I really don't). But our problem with Trump is different. And by different I mean it's a real thing and might start a war.

So please, please, let's put the partisan posturing and ridiculous political chest thumping aside (you know, basically half the stuff I write about) for a minute and deal with the big, unqualified, butterscotch-coiffured, rampaging elephant in the room.
Hey-wha-why are you laughing? We really can't go on like-
stop that, this is a serious problem guys let this
man run on the GOP ticket and...I mean it, stop laughing! 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Vas deferen-etly going to explode!

I've circled the part of the internet that
isn't about genitals. Stick to that part.
Hey, you know how condoms have been around since at least the 16th century and they're one of the more reliable forms of birth control and protection against STD's short of not sticking your stuff into someone else's wherever? Well they are. But the geniuses behind the Jiftip have a better idea that's in no way a better idea. Oh, and by the way, we're about to get like, super-graphic here talking about wing-wangs and hootenanny's so if you're easily offended maybe stop reading. In fact, stay off the internet all together.

So yeah, the Jiftip. It's a, get this, a self-adhesive sticker that goes over the tip of the penis. Which I guess is called a jif? Maybe? It's hard to tell, there's like a million euphemisms for penis. Let's just keep this clinical and use the term 100% all-beef footlong.
Pictured: No. In fact, let's never say that again.
So it's what, a hat?
So back to the Jiftip. Which is not a condom. Whatever you do, don't use this as you would a condom. The website is super clear about this.

"Welcome to
Jiftip is not a condom
You cannot use it for that"

-The Jiftip website, 
clearing things up for us

"For the love of God Montresor!"
Ok, so what the hell is it supposed to do? No one knows. In fact, the people that make it seem to be kind of squirrelly on the subject. The website suggests that the product is supposed to make sex more pleasurable without all that disease and pregnancy-prevention getting in the way, but it isn't supper clear as to how blocking up ones urethra and sealing in the semen like it's Fortunato in The Cask of Amontillado is going to be anything but a painful, messy horror show. Huh? Yeah, I know, that one was a reach, even for me, but that's how screwed up this thing is. It's got me going back to 8th grade English for my analogies.

Here, read this explanation from the 'how it works' section of their website and then explain to me why whoever wrote this isn't on a watchlist:

"Have a jizz-fest inside your penis, then take it outside, Jiftip has you covered. As you feel the rush to gush you're thinking, 'What a wonderful world.'"

-From the Jiftip websi-wait, 'the
rush to gush?' Holy shit guys...
I assume of course that by 'jizz-fest,' they're referring to a festival celebrating
 Jazz-wailing, a form of music in the Star Wars Universe made popular by
Ever Orbus and his Galactic Jizz-Wailers. No, I shit you not, that's real.

Like one of these. But for your dick.
Gross. And it gets worse. According to Dr. Lauren Streicher from Northwestern University, using this thing could lead to something called a 'retrograde-ejaculation' which is something that should never happen to anyone ever. So to sum up, Jiftip is ineffective as a contraceptive and it can't keep you from getting an STD and it may cause reverse-ejculations and, presumably, testicular-explodening. I mean, maybe if it came in fun colors or had a tassel or a propeller on top it could be an accessory. Like a pasty for your Gentleman Jim (made that one up myself). But it doesn't. It just jams up your gear and might just explode your vas deferens. So why does Jiftip exist? Spoiler alert: because business.

I'm thinking some kid working on his MBA got drunk with his bro's one night over a game of beer-pong (that's a thing college kids do, right?), came up with Jiftip and somehow convinced an investor to give him the money to make it real. And like that machine that squeezes juice out of a bag for you, it was bullshit from day one, but lucky for the fine folks at Jiftip, there is always going to be money to be made from idiots. So here we are talking about dick-hole stickers.
Although I'm kind of curious to see what would happen if we put
a Jiftip over the opening of a Juicero bag and switched it on.