Archive for the ‘Main Article’ Category

Research in Motion in motion

Friday, February 8th, 2013

Go to YahooFinance.com, type in “RIM” and hit “5 yrs” on the chart. What a slide, eh? Stock worth $140 a share in 2008 has recently traded as low as $7!

The story is too well-known to bother telling here. Suffice it to say that iPhone ate RIM’s lunch for them. And then when RIM was standing there going, “Hey! Who ate my lunch??” Samsung Galaxy sneaked up behind them and kicked RIM in the balls. Then Google Android knelt behind RIM and iPhone pushed RIM over. Nokia was too small to assist but stood watching and laughed.

It was a bad scene, man. Not as bad as when Netflix beat Blockbuster to death with a piece of firewood in a blind rage, but pretty bad.

However, there is some light at the end of the tunnel! Even though the BlackBerry smartphone hasn’t materially changed in five years, and even though you still can’t look anything up on the internet browser with it, and even though people almost laugh at BlackBerry’s remaining users, and even though all the Fortune500 companies are bailing on the “secure” BlackBerries for their employees, and even though morale plummeted at RIM to the point where internal emails revealed a prevailing corporate atmosphere of bleak defeatism and apathy, the stock has finally gone up!

Why? BB10! Yes, the much-vaunted iPhoneish “BlackBerry 10″ is fiiiinally being released! This is after the BB10 release was postponed so many times that most financial analysts were betting that RIM would be purchased by Motorola for its few patents and then disappear into the dustbin of corporate history.

Now, the stock is hardly the darling it was in 2007 but it did climb out of penny stock territory to a comparatively lofty $17 a share and has hovered in the mid-teens since!

We sat down with our favorite financial commentator, star stockbroker and racquetball enthusiast William A. Spaulding Patrick III (whom you may recall elucidated the potash craze for us some time back) to get the down-low. Yo.

We were nursing our second Shirley Temple at the Morton’s bar where we’d scheduled to meet by the time William finally sidled up- 15 minutes late. We were about to say hello but William immediately asked, “What do you think of my new tie? It’s Hermès. This pattern, here, this pattern is called ‘paisley.’”

We conceded that, yes, it was a pretty nice tie but that we were here for some advice on RIM.

William answered us while anxiously scanning the entire bar for anyone that might be important, then glanced down and jiggled his wrist to make sure “everyone” could see his Rolex.

“It’s not called RIM anymore, it’s called BlackBerry,” said Will, “‘Cause they, uh, make BlackBerries so they mine as well be called BlackBerry. Get it? I’ve got to go to the washroom, one sec.”

We’d had only a few bites of our calamari starter (delicious) when William returned, seeming suddenly quite agitated. He declined to join us on the calamari and just sat there for a minute chewing his lip and looking one-by-one at every person in the bar.

“Uh, so William?” we asked, “What’s your reco? Is RIM due for another long season in the sun or is this just a blip?”

William leaned in very close, and became very serious, and spoke very fast, “I’ve got every dollar I have in that sumbitch. And all my clients’ too. Buy as much as you can, this BB10 is gonna revolutionize the smartphone industry. As much as you can. Buy buy buy.”

“What in the heck is so great about BB10?”, we asked. “It looks alot like an iPhone from the pictures we’ve seen…”

William grinned and wiped his nose with his sleeve.

“It’s got something no other phone has. Something absolutely revolutionary,” he said, “this one feature makes it certain that the stock will be at $500 or more in not even a month’s time!”

Wow, we thought to ourselves, if William is right then one stood to make 50 times their money!

We had to ask: “William- what is this game changing feature?”

After a long glug from his double martini he looked around the bar for a bit, then whipped a gold Cross fountain pen out of his suit jacket and wrote something on the bar napkin that lay before him. Then he quickly folded it up and left it under his palm.

He looked around again – squinting for a moment with particular suspicion at the busboy – and then casually slid the folded napkin along the bar towards us. William put his finger to his lips. “Shhhhh,” he whispered ominously.

Though it seemed no one cared a whit about either of us or our RIM conversation as far as we could tell, we deferred to the expert and, with delicate care not to draw attention to ourselves, we unfolded our secret napkin-note. It read…

“BB10 has a touch screen.”

Touch screen was emphasized with three underlines.

We were a little confused.

“Will,” we whispered, “iPhone and Galaxy already have touchscreens.”

William’s face dropped.

“I, uh, I’ve got to return some videotapes,” he sputtered as he got up and ran out the door so fast he nearly bowled over some old lady in a fur coat.

We took another bite of our calamari and began to consider that maybe the paper could use a different financial commentator.

Assad on his Hitlerstache: “No Resemblance Whatsoever!”

Friday, August 31st, 2012

Bashar Al-Assad. A murderous dictator. Willing to massacre his own people in order to stay in power.

‘Dictator’? Wait- I thought those were extinct*? I mean, this IS the 90s, isn’t it??”

True, true- except, this is the Middle East. Middle of the East. Have you any idea what this means?

“Oh right- THAT place. …I thought Dubya liberated that place?”

No- despite the fact that several generals and political hacks repeated the phrase “not another Vietnam” like 40 times during the whole Iraq buzz-kill, Dubya kinda created a mini-Vietnam there for like five, six years. (Geez, remember??) Now bombs are going off like crazy but they don’t make the news so we’ll never know what kind of power base we left in that miasma called Iraq. …Saving for the fact that it’s an Iranian-friendly one…and for most of the 80s we paid Saddam to fight the Iranians….no matter! Surely tribalistic illiterates in huts the world over get Enlightenment Principles! This obviously transcends the centuries-old rule of realpolitik.

With regards to our efforts in Iraq, though, at the end of the day the popular thinking is that the ol’ hands-off theory was pretty much validated by the Arab Spring.

“Righhhht- but won’t ominous-sounding “political parties” like “The Moslem Brotherhoodstrong-arm most of those ‘Arab Spring‘, uh, elections?”

Well, uhhh, the democratic political process is sometimes complicated, ummm, sometimes you have to walk before you run, er, uhhh….

ANYWAY- to the matter at hand. Bashar Al-Assad. (His first name is Basher for Christ’s sake. I’m pretty sure that’s a dude that wields a mallet in like 7 video games.)

Now, to start, let’s be clear: we’re not gonna** get all bogged down in the political ramifications regarding Syria. Like how the good guys might very well become bad guys if Assad is ousted…or how long-ruling Assad and his cronies are Ba’athist – a pseudo-socialist, pan-Arab party the only other mandarin of which was the late Saddam Hussein…or the fact Assad leads a Shi’ite minority called “Allawite” that only calls 12% of the population followers vs. the 74% Sunni majority….or how Assadic Syria is an Iranian client state that benefits from Iranian oil-drenched cash to finance and house Hezbollah while buttressing its own regime…or how the Russians back it in the UN Security Council*** in order to have a customer for old Hinds and a sweet port into the Med via the ancient city of Tartus****….or how several of Assad’s key generals have defected of late but noone can flippin’ tell whether this will be enough.No. We’re here to address facial hair. That’s right. In a rare interview provided to Abe Froman (Abe told Assad he was 1/16 Jewish 1/3 Cherokee) on the dictator’s private presidential patio, we finally get an answer to this obvious case of doppelganger.

Imperial President and Protector of the Syrian Pe-;

“No no- you don’t have to bother with that nonsense

‘May I just call you Inheritor Warlord?*****”

“That would be more apt.”

‘First-off: how goes the struggle against the revolutionaries?;

Terrorists.”

Pardon me?’

Terrorists, not revolutionaries.”

‘But they are common citizenry for the most part. Staging a *revolution* against you. Does this not make them *revolutionaries*?

“They threaten and terrorize me. I am Syria. Therefore they terrorize Syria.”

‘Well I can’t argue with logic like that! Moving on…The Toronto Thymes has noticed you bear a striking resemblance to Adolf Hitler?”

‘You guys are so euro-centric. No, I don’t think we look anything alike.’

“But the ‘stache, great warlord, the ‘stache!”

“IT’S IN STYLE HERE, ASSHOLE!”

>at this point several mortars exploded in the midst of the interview. Abe’s hummus and tonic smashed to the ground. Clearly the interview was at an end. Crouched under a plastic patio table with El-Basher, Abe had a rare opportunity to ask one last question.<

Inheritor Warlord- your wife demands Pier 1 but FedEx won’t deliver anymore. All your major cities are in jeopardy. You have tanks, planes and helicopters, yes, but Christ, most of the guys manning them don’t like you. The tide of defections by key commanders to the rebels’ side continues unabated. CAN YOU HANG ON??”

At this the great Inheritor Warlord struck a smoke and adjusted his tie. He stared at our brave correspondent for a moment and then uttered these momentous words…

‘Ahem…..how the fuck should I know?
______________________________________________________________________________________________
*the ASKER omits the continent of Africa, where 11-17 examples are usually “in play.” He does so not because he’s a racist but because most people omit Africa when they talk about the world-in-general.

**”going to

***a goofy uber-commitee of the UN, formed in the wake of WWII and composed only of the winners of WWII…so you have Putin‘s Russia with veto power over intervening on a dictator, or China weighing in on “human rights” issues. Pretty funny if t’weren’t true. (Britain and France are in this cool-kids-club too. Germany is left out (see photo inset.))

****pretty interesting. This city was once to the world what NY is today. …wiki it.

*****When the Bashar’s father died in 2000, Bashar was appointed leader of the Ba’ath Party and the Army, and was elected president unopposed in what the regime claimed to be a massive popular support (97.2% of the votes), after the Majlis Al Sha’ab (Parliament) swiftly voted to lower the minimum age for candidates from 40 to 34 (Assad’s age when he was elected). On 27 May 2007, Bashar was approved as president for another seven-year term, with the official result of 97.6% of the votes in a referendum without another candidate. [Wikipedia]

Most Coveted Automobiles Have No Balls

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Ah, the automobile. The ultimate status symbol.* Whether it’s the nicest Integra in the poor-as-sh*t neighborhood or the nicest Ferrari in the rich-as-f*ck gated enclave, everyone wants their whip to be admired – if not generally – than at least by those in their peer group.

Don’t believe us?

97% of US car sales are financed, which is to say; 97% of people probably should have gotten a model more akin to a 3-year-old-Kia-under-50,000-miles if their oft-espoused “Cars are just to get from point A to point B” saying was actually something they believed in rather than just something they said to sound all sensible, prudent and un-materialistic.

Weird thing is, the most status-y of the status-symbol models have no balls.

“Huh?” you sputter. “But the fanciest cars always have the sickest engines!”

True, but still No.

Let’s explain…

Case I: The SUV

Nothing says “I have a lot of money” like a Range Rover SUV- specifically, the Supercharged top model version that boasts 510HP.* Preferably in white, just like in the rap videos.

“Wow…look at it…dripping with chrome. The dashboard submerged within rare oak and the seats hand-sewn with custom, creamy leather. So sleek…so stately. A subdued power. A kind of ferocious elegance. I…I……I want one.”

NO! Stop right there, friendo. Sure, it’s pretty. Granted. Tough to knock that body style. And 510HP? Very impressive. But slow down: It’s got no balls.

“No balls?”

NONE!

“510 horse? That sounds like a f*ckload of balls!”

No, palie, no. It’s a mirage. …Let’s put it this way: If a Chevy Tahoe hit that thing full on it would crumple like an effete British boarding school kid getting punched in the stomach by a large, black man from Detroit. Yes it would crumple and burn along with all the Holt Renfrew* shit in the trunk.

“Huh? But the very best model Tahoe only has 403 horse??”

OK, let’s put it another way: if a Chevy Tahoe hit that thing it would buckle like Orlando Bloom getting hit in the chest with a crowbar by Marshall Mathers. It would buckle and burn along with all the organic, gluten-free, hypo-alergenic Whole Foods groceries in the trunk.

“Ohhh…I think I’m getting it. What’s in my trunk? In the Tahoe??”

Sh*t from The Bay**. And normal groceries from a normal grocery store. And maybe an M16.

“Oh, I like that.”

Yeah, that’s right. You still get some oak on the dash, not-retardedly-chrome chrome wheels and leather seats to make you feel all warm inside, but not so much of that sh*t that you’re left driving a purse-with-wheels.

“Ah, nice.”

And get this…

“Yeah?”

…the Tahoe is what the Secret Service drives.

“Oooo.”

Check the grill, friend.

“Ahhhh…sick.”

Yeah, baby. And it isn’t stupid expensive. Half as much.

“I like that.”

Best part?

“Yeah?”

It’s got balls.**

“Ohhh, yes. Now I get it.”

Yes.

We knew that you would.

Now, let’s move on to the only other type of car a person ever really needs…

Case II: The Sports Car

We were wrong before: Nothing says “I have a lot of money” like a BENTLEY- specifically, the Bentley GT Continental.* Again: preferably in white, just like in the rap videos.

And again: the chrome, the oak, the leather- oh my! And the latest, best model? Boasts 592HP.

“Dude- that’s hitting concept car balls. Surely, you can’t again say…”

Oh, yes; yes we can. And we will. Even with near 600 horses under the hood. This thing…has no balls.

“What!?”

Let’s put it this way: If a Chevy Corvette ZR1 raced that thing it would be like Jim Brown sprinting against Piers Morgan.

“Yeah? What’s the horse on the Corvette? This is pretty important in the f*ckin’ sports car category- ya can’t just gloss over it like ya did before with the trucks!”

We agree: 638HP.

“OK, OK- more horses; but not by much. What’s the torque? I mean the Bentley has 479 ft-lb’s!”

604 ft-lb’s.

“Shit.”

Yeah, your giant status symbol would get mowed down by Detroit brawn worse than the British did at Bunker Hill.

“Yeah, I get it now.”

The ‘vette would smoke that ostentatious ‘tardmobile harder than Miller Genuine Draft smoked Amy Winehouse.****

“Look: I said ‘I get it,’ OK?!”

Hey baby:

It just. makes. sense.

Case III: The Minivan

No one covets a minivan. That’d be like comparing two turds.

A minivan says to the world “I have given up on life.”

And if you need space – a perfectly reasonable request – and seats for soccer practice and the occasional 3 AM dead hooker when the kids are asleep and so on and so on, well; refer back to Case 1!

_______________________________________________________________________________________
*Beyond Robb Report shit like motoryachts and whatnot. We’re talkin’ everyone here…I mean, what other possession do you parade around town more than your car?

**This is the uber-yuppie, premium department store of Canada. US readers: please sub in “Saks 5th Avenue.”

***US readers: ummm….JC Penney? But, ah, like back in the 80s when it was still reasonably nice? …Like the JC Penney Marty McFly would have gone to?? Yeah. Like that.

****too soon?

12 Year Old French Boy wins Best Picture Oscar

Monday, February 27th, 2012

The French boy thanked Roman Polanski as an unceasing artistic inspiration.

The dog from Frasier was also among the overjoyed artists; however, by the time the Best Picture category was reached at the very end of the night he was so coked-up he barely knew where he was and couldn’t even distinguish that he’d won. (Note the picture, inset. Yes, so high he’d lost sense of where the audience even was.)

And yes, that is James Cromwell from Babe* waaay in the back there amidst all those Frenchmen.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________
*and Babe II: Pig in the City

Kim Jong-Un Taking to Divinity Nicely

Sunday, February 19th, 2012

Kim Jong-Un. A chubby, unremarkable manboy. He’s basically a carbon copy of the fat Korean kid everyone had in their class during at least one year of elementary school. You know, that guy John Kim? He really liked Super Mario Brothers?? Well this Kim is just like that Kim…except this Kim has just inherited the world’s last feudal kingdom. “This harmless half-wit?,” you say? “There must be some misunderstanding.”

Sadly, no. With his devilish daddy Kim Jong-Il gone, Kim Jong-Un is stuck as sole inheritor of the family business.

Indeed, his idyllic, simple life as the anonymous son of a “wealthy Korean businessman” at a Swiss boarding school is now permanently behind him.* The shy, stocky little chubbster – who once spent most of his time happily snacking and watching NBA games – has now been thrust into a swirling and potentially deadly world of intrigue, rivals, coteries, cliques and, worst of all, one where he is confronted daily with the obligation to make decisions that have geopolitical ramifications.

Kim soon found that his faultless knowledge of Michael Jordan‘s historical shooting stats would have been better replaced with a faultless knowledge of the Ming Jyap Brigade’s historical shooting stats, as far as his day-to-day responsibilities go.

Rumor has it that Kim is lucky enough to have a wisened, octogenarian Uncle playing the role of Cardinal Richelieu to Kim’s obese version of the famously naieve King Louis XIIIth

“Kim-San, while pretending to be on maneuvers, elements of the 105th Armored Division were planting mines on the DMZ in express violation of the Geneva Convention and have captured several UN peacekeepers that stumbled upon their operation. Shall we decapitate these rats immediately or do you have specific instructions as to the nature and extent of their suffering? What does the Great Leader desire??”

‘Ohhh, Unkauwww! I dauwno!! I jus’ ‘avin’ shum toastauw strudews enn’ warrtcheeng 1991 Burrz v. Wakeghws Finarrs auw Betamax ovah heeyah!! Shoot dem I guesssh…’**

“Your command is God’s spoken breathe, Kim-San.”

….

“Kim-San, General Kwon and several of his officers have been apprehended organizing a coup against your divine rule. Shall we decapitate these rats immediately or do you have specific instructions as to the nature and extent of their suffering? What does the Great Leader desire??”

‘Ohhh, Unkauwww! I dauwno!! I jus’ ‘avin’ shum Mirk Durrds enn’ warrtcheeng supah-funny neugh Amewikan pwogwam Wirr & Gwace auw ratest weaahw-pwojection beeeg skween ovah heeyah! Shoot dem I guesssh…’

“Your command is God’s spoken breathe, Kim-San.”

….

“Kim-San, a horde of peasants has robbed your divine commissary of many glorious pastries. They claim they are starving and have eaten all the soles of their shoes. Shall we decapitate these rats immediately or do you have specific instructions as to the nature and extent of their suffering? What does the Great Leader desire??

‘Ohhh, Unkauwww! I dauwno!! I jus’ ‘avin’ shum Oh Henwy’z enn’ warrtcheeng wearry, wearry twipy neugh Amewikan mooovie Nevah Endeeng Stowy ovah heeyah!! Hory sheet, dis so tweepy I hope eh’WEAWWY nevah enn’! Shoot dem I guesssh…’**

“Your command is God’s spoken breathe, Kim-San.”

….

…And despite the never-ending coups, assassination attempts, starvation riots and the whole global castigation thing, Kim has reportedly just discovered his father’s harem room.

So life is good.

____________________________________________________________________________________________
*classmates noted he was completely ordinary save for a tendency to be ferociously rude to the staff.

**the BBC has reported that Kim insists on speaking broken English to his retinue…so don’t even bother getting started on that racist slander email, mister! …More specifically, Kim insists on practicing his English at all times with his sycophantic staff in preparation for an operation to abduct Jennifer Aniston and make her his Eternal FRIEND (wink).

Holocaust denier admits he “likes the concept”

Sunday, December 11th, 2011

Billy Jack Rommel, 34, of Miami, Ohio hates Jews. “Bankers and dentists- the worst people!” he often says to no one in particular, his eyes gleaming with unadulterated hatred. “They love money…and they HATE J-C.”

Usually, his bitter utterances are followed with this fascinating little revelation: “And they planned 9/11!” …How or why “the Jews*” did, Billy is a little vague on.

Most notably of all, however, Billy Jack displays that strange dichotomy that all frothy-mouthed, close-eyed anti-Semites exhibit regarding the Holocaust: the most stringent denial that it happened coupled with a deep adoration of the concept.

“That whole Holocaust thing never ‘appened!” explains B-Jack, discursively painting a weak picture of a massive PR stunt involving millions of people. “Zionist hoax. Them yids, see, them yids wants ya ta’PITY’em. That’s the thing of it, ya see. So they made up this whole gas oven story during DubyaDubyaTwo, ya’understand.”

Even shown pictures of Dachau and Auschwitz, including ones clearly illustrating hundreds of bodies, Billy Jack was able to shrug them off. “Ya call this evidence? Thems coulda been anyone. It was a WAR. Hello? Hell- that one right there’s a mannequin, I tell you whut. I use ta’work at JC Penney and I knowz a mannequin when I seez one.”

Given a moment to think, unmolested by questions, one could literally see the strain in BJ’s fiery eyes as the rusty cogs of his thought process ground away behind them…”But imagine how many of’em you could get in that there oven,” he whispered, tapping one of the photos. “Woooh-hee. If only we’d finished’em off.”

Called to account on his transparent admission, Billy Jack was quick to backpedal: “Naw, naw I mean hypothetical like, ya’see. Ya. Didn’ ‘appen ya’understand. Hitler even had a dog. Golden retriever by my rekollekshin’. So it didn’appen. They justs wants tha’ pity fur’it. ….But if it had, uh, if it had, uh…it’a’d been nice if they’d got’em all.”

For more of Billy Jack’s insights on the falsity of the Holocaust or any other massive historical event that didn’t happen, please visit the Wapakoneta Waffle House just off Route 75 during regular business hours.

He’s there most days.

_________________________________________________________________________________________
*a collective group – despite their apparent variety – all cooperating behind the scenes towards realizing their one overarching, secret goal of world domination…or something.

Smoking still cool

Monday, July 25th, 2011

During WWII the “k-ration” non-perishable meal for every American soldier included three delicious cigarettes. On the other side of the front? Hitler was psychotically anti-smoking,* devising the world’s first domestic anti-smoking campaign. Indeed, his generals were constantly “nicking” as they were forced to listen to him rave map-side for hours on end in any one in his shrinking ring of various command bunkers. Flash forward 50 years or so and Germany was the last member country to bend to the EU‘s draconian smoking laws entirely due to this particular, persevering social memory of old Adolf, the world’s original “anti-smoking Nazi.” German society’s post-Nazi intolerance for intolerance still persists though; for instance, smoking booths still exist within German airports.

Almost everywhere else in the developed world?

Well, save for a handful of Libertarian redoubts such as Florida or Arizona, you are absolutely prohibited from lighting up anywhere indoors – even in a bar. Yes, our freedoms have been so downtrodden that today no one even notices the disgustingly smoke-free character of the modern bar. Actually having to smell the cheap perfume, reeking cologne and stale beer aroma that permeates every bar in the known world back in 1990? Unthinkable. Today? Par for the course.

You could say that the vast majority of bars in 2011 exactly resemble Hitler’s command bunkers of the early 1940′s…that modern society in its indoor smokeless-ness perfectly reflects Hitler’s plan for the smokeless dystopian paradise that was to be the thousand year Third Reich.

He would be nothing short of delighted.

Of course, Adolf Hitler lost WWII on all fronts. …Save for this “front,” where – though Hitler be dead – his pioneering vision of a society purified of all tobacco seems poised for triumph.

Unfortunately the side representing freedom and individuality dwindles in number and lacks the resolve to be heard against the despotic clamor of the “smoke-free” masses** who seek to impose a puritanically intolerant, smoke-free totalitarian regime upon everyone.

The tactical victories scored by the anti-smoking Nazis began in the late 1950s and continue to tally up today. You can’t hack a butt in Central Park in Manhattan anymore. Likewise, you can’t flame a fag even on the sidewalk in many towns across the USA. A pack of cigarettes that use to be as costly as the impulse chocolate bar purchase now weigh on Joe Smoke-pack’s monthly budget almost as badly as his gas expenditures for his Tahoe Hybrid.***

Indeed, in the Western world it is largely just the working class segment of society that continues to smoke. Cynics and Liberals would make all kinds of highly insulting claims correlating this fact with education-level-attained or some other condescending metric but, in truth, it is the common sense inherent to the character of the working man allows him to see through their alarmist agenda, champion individual freedom, and soldier on with his deliciously satisfying habit.

Yet, do the so-called Liberals**** in every country across the developed world – those who have levied taxes on cigarettes to the point that what was twenty years ago a $3 (USD) purchase is now $13 (or higher) – even care that they have effectively created a poor tax? No.

Of course they don’t.

Despite their bleeding heart rhetoric about every supposedly hard-done by group in society since they can’t make cigarettes illegal they are more than happy to attempt to make it prohibitively expensive through crushing taxes, even if the working class smoker – he who ostensibly represents their base – is economically crushed as well.

Not to mention the demonized tobacco manufacturers themselves. Where is the disgusting graphic of a dead fat man on a slab with his bloated stomach torn open in full glossy color on a Big Mac or a Whopper container? Clearly Phillip Morris remains a more than adequate whipping for every Western nation’s ubiquitous Government Ministry of Well Being and Morals. Given that the preachy 80% still gorges itself on hundreds of metric tons of fast food a day, it will be a long while until McDonald’s and its ilk are set upon by the government like a leech upon a cow for that sweet, sweet tax revenue once poor old Phillip Morris’ drained, skeletal carcass is cast into the fiscal ditch.

OK- the health issue. “We’re not anti-smoker, we’re pro-health!” some unhinged soccer mom froths at 120 decibels into some poor veck’s face who was smoking innocently on the sidewalk. Well, let’s examine that…sure, smoking is obviously bad for you; undeniably so BUT obesity is the #1 cause of lowered life expectancy in North America, not smoking. Yet a Double Quarter Pounder is not only unadorned with color closeups of a clogged artery but costs about $3, having climbed only with inflation through the decades. Where’s the fat tax?? A short trip through Pennsylvania and even Stevie Wonder could see that this debt ceiling business would be immediately resolved if a Whopper cost as much as a pack of lights.*****

Now clearly we propose a fat tax in jest, and obviously the left has no compunctions about beating up on smoking since it’s so convenient, being a vilified, increasingly unpopular so-called “vice.” And let’s leave aside that this is really just a nice, greedy tax grab (disproportionately suffered by the poor, of course) under a painfully transparent veneer of some noble “healthful” cause, because we have a more pressing question: Where the hell does the government get off telling me how healthy I can be? If I want a cheeseburger and 15 cigarettes for every meal, well; I’m the one who’ll have to find a Big’n’Tall with a wheelchair ramp. If you want vegan food 24/7 and a smoke-free house, well; sure, masochism is not illegal either.

However: in the airport?

“Sorry pal, you don’t own the air five inches in front of my face. If I have to smell your Axe body spray, you can deal with a tiny spiral of smoke heading for the ceiling. If your virgin lungs are sprouting tumors by the dozen, stand one foot that way. Theeere we go. All better now.”

Of course, the Liberals’ tyrannical legislation in every Western nation that propel cigarettes into ever costlier stratospheres is accompanied by their usual refrain: “It’s for your own good.”

Ah, the protectionist Liberal. Truly a pan-national phenomenon. Once again curbing my ability to make choices for myself as an adult…for my own good. Giving me a nice patronizing pat on the head with one hand while they reach for my wallet with the other.

Luckily the forces of personal choice, responsibility and freedom – while huddled in a veritable smoke-filled Bastogne – are not yet beaten.

Yes, smoking remains cool.

Like the small child who stick his penis in the electrical socket precisely because he was told not to ten times, casual cigarette smoking continues to be a choice upheld by upwards of 40% of the 13 to 17 year old demographic of both genders. A reinforcement in the battle against hypocrisy, censure and pseudo-liberal authoritarianism for the next generation lights up every day under Junior High bleachers across the globe. Sure, they’re not adults yet (in the eyes of the law anyway…insert your own American Indian pregnancy comment here) but they certainly aren’t toddlers and appropriately kick violently back at all attempts to treat them as as such.

“If smoking is so bad then how come John McClane – who famously saved a skyscraper full of yuppies from Alan Rickman in 1987 – obviously adored his habit?” a young person might rightly ask.

“If smoking is so bad then how come it is such a delicious digestif to big meals or sex? Or the unbeatable compliment to a coffee or a beer?” another youth may ponder.

Popular media hasn’t even tried to counter these plain truths, and somewhere between 13 and 17 they become common knowledge. Whether the talented propagandists of the Liberal moralist majority trump a teenager’s sense of free will and empirical learning is only a case by case question.

“So what?” you ask, “I quit ages ago. What do I care??” Well, TTT recommends that if you gave up your habit in 1986 when Skylar was born…well…she’s off to college now, so why not get re-acquainted with an old friend? He’s missed you.

And if you never even smoked in the first place?? Hey- your fortune cookie told you that “You will try new things this month.”

Of course, your friends – terrified at the sight of your smokecrime – will almost certainly have a problem with you enjoying your new-found, age-old gentlemanly habit in their cars, homes or even very likely on their lawns during a BBQ and move to verbally reprimand you at first whiff. We suggest that you just politely reply, “Oh, I’m sorry. I’m Jewish on my father’s side. Is that going to be a problem too?”

So, “Welcome back” and “You’re welcome,” respectively.

Excuse us, we must (sadly) step outside.

That steak and scotch calls for a smoke.
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*only one of many things he was psychotically antagonistic towards, these also including people who talk during movies and Jews.

**the preachy smoke-free majority witnesses inordinate membership by the morbidly obese and fans of Ugly Betty.

***11% more efficient than the standard Tahoe 5.7L V8

**** “So-called” or “pseudo” because the confiscatory, interventionist character of the modern Liberal seems to have perverted the otherwise noble dictionary definition of “liberal.” That is to say, a hundred years ago a Liberal was a choice-upholding, progressive radical and a Conservative would be taxing you to death and banning all your hobbies. Granted, unless you get to abortion or gay marriage or marijuana, then today’s Conservative is also confiscatory and interventionist just like the mean old monarchical conservatives of a hundred years ago so…it gets a little confusing…..TTT advises that you just subscribe to Libertarianism, a magnificent and inexplicably peripheral ethos.

*****Sorry “signatures” or some other euphemism for light. “Light” has been banned as it implies that this is a “healthier” type of cigarette and, by implication, that smoking itself might be “healthy” (-full stop-)…even though with less tar, “lighter” or even “healthier” is precisely what a light cigarette is.

Hippies vent frustration of stultifying lifestyle

Friday, June 17th, 2011

If you get the chance to flip an unoccupied cop car, should you take it?

A) Yes.

B) No.

C) Is my face showing and is someone recording me on video via cell phone?

D) I’d rather flip the cop.

If you answered ‘A,’ then there’s a good chance that you live in Vancouver and scraped up enough cash planting trees for a ticket to the playoffs. If you answered ‘B,’ then you are a law-abiding citizen so good for you…except that what we didn’t tell you is that there is a baby trapped under the cop car- WHAT THE HELL IS THE MATTER WITH YOU?? You’d probably have turned in Anne Frank wouldn’t have you, ya f*ckin’ automaton! And if you answered ‘C,’ well…you are a despicable little anarchist but a cunning one and we must say “kudos” to your rare sense of….good sense* (…the fact that we’d all have to chip in by way of higher property taxes for a new cruiser aside). Oh, you answered ‘D’? Verrrrry funny, wisenheimer!

Yes, the sleepy urban space that is nicely tucked into a temperate rainforest and correspondingly filled with sleepy hippy space cadets known as Vancouver showed its mean side this week when the town’s hockey team lost Game Seven of the Stanley Cup to Boowausteh’n and angry fans decided to have a good old-fashioned, Watts-style riot.

The first humorous thing about this Bruins-ha-ha is that Vancouver Mayor Handmodel and Vancouver Police Chief Sulu both insist that a very *small* group of dedicated “criminals” and “anarchists” numbering in the tens were to blame for the actual destruction, rather than ordinary fans-gone-mad numbering in the 100s*** as countless YouTube and news station videos make plain.

However, leveling the blame at the 17 f*cktard p*ssies in masks who clearly had this in mind around noon that day versus the X thousand common Vancouverites who collectively decided to go nuts on a whim only directly after the game ended is simply good politics, if a little too transparent.

That is to say, Vancouver’s leaders trying to divert the blame onto a handful of losers with masks who live in their grandmas’ basements amid multiple Rage Against the Machine posters and a whack station is not the crux of the whole debacle. The real issue here is the latent, simmering rage that burns within the thin chest, deep inside the bleeding heart of every hippy.

Indeed, TTT hypothesizes that having to pretend that you don’t like meat, guns or money for years on end fills an otherwise ordinary man with a burning, barely-subdued fury that is only finally let loose in a frenzy of looting, burning and smashing as soon as a suitable opportunity presents itself…such as, say, if one’s hockey team lost Game Seven of the Stanley Cup. Like this week. Don’t believe us? How about way back in ’94.

For instance, let’s run some scenario testing here:

Your car is a hybrid or a bicycle rather than a car. Your dinners consist of tofu or salad rather than a cheeseburger or a steak. You vote NDP rather than Conservative. Your girlfriend is emaciated and doesn’t wear makeup rather than stacked and gorgeous. You like Metric and other forms of bisexual keening rather than Led Zeppelin. You pretend to sincerely love trees rather than being ambivalent towards them. You watch programs about whales on Community Television rather than Lethal Weapon on TBS.

Your hockey team loses the Stanley Cup in a heartbreaker Game Seven and, after the game, you find by weight of numbers that the police are powerless.

What do you do?

Well, if you’re the average Vancouverite you clearly go on a rampage to vent the ocean of frustration that all those many, many years of bicycling, tofu, irrational voting, bad listening, tree hugging and boring television have filled you with.

If you’re from Edmonton or Calgary? As the fans did in every instance after Stanley Cup losses in 1983, 1986, 2004 and 2006 you go home listening to Led Zeppelin in a real car, have a cheeseburger while perusing a newspaper made out of paper from a tree, bang your hot girlfriend or wife, watch Lethal Weapon on TBS, chalk it all up to “good try” and go to bed.

Hmmm, so the hippies are the assh*les (twice!) whereas the blue collar oil guys – those truck drivin’ roughnecks that are so passionately hated by the hippies – are…the peaceful ones? Of course it turned out this way!! In Alberta, respect for private property is inviolate. Smash a guy’s store window and you could find a likewise treatment being administered upon your face. Among B.C.’s hippies? Well corporations are inherently evil sooo…unsurprisingly the “respect” for private property is, um… “less.”

Yet, one last thought…. A wrench can be thrown into our pseudo-intellectual cogs here; aren’t hippies stoners? Aren’t stoners always peaceful? Even when they’re mad, wrecking a cop car would seem like “too much work,” not to mention waaaay too confrontational mayn. And they don’t even like to shop at hemp-less Sears or The Bay let alone loot one.

Oh right, marijuana is illegal. B.C.’s multi-billion dollar, #1 cash crop. They couldn’t have stepped outside the arena and immediately lit up a calming fattie right there on the sidewalk because the state won’t let them. Against the law.

Never mind.

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*Once again a cheque has been delivered to one Michael Myers. No, not this guy. THIS guy.**

**The Purolator man said he was in his movie room with the blinds closed drinking bathtub gin and watching The Love Guru for what was obviously the 300th time while angrily and repeatedly asking the screen, “How is this not funny?!?”

***or 1000s if standing around cheering makes one complicit in vandalism…this is an IMO-per-person tangential question not really relevant to the central hilarpothesis.

****Even this as a “reason” or even “excuse” of sorts barely holds water since 1) the fans were obviously burning cop cars simply because they could and 2) many cities in the past have gone on a rampage of destruction to celebrate a championship WIN…i.e. refer back to reason (1).

How to spot a “Hipster”

Friday, April 29th, 2011

It was 2004 when you first saw one. You were walking down the street, on your way to your neighborhood Adult Video Store (yeah, you’re one of those VHS type pervs) when you were suddenly confronted with the strangest of sights: a thin 20-something wearing a fedora that he may have stolen from Sammy Davis Jr. “Wow,” you said to yourself, “I’ve only ever seen heavy-set Cubans, old guys at the dog track or jazz musicians wearing those in real life!”

But that wasn’t all.

He had Converse sneakers on that would have been better suited to a 12 year old skateboarder, skin-tight jeans*, green Ray Ban Wayfarer knock-offs that his Aunt probably bought in Daytona Beach in 1987, and a plaid shirt that belied the fact that he’d never done a day of manual labor in his life.

Of course, today such a sight would be not in the least bit remarkable. Yes, these so-called “hipsters” are everywhere in 2011.

Here are the tell-tale signs that you’re probably in for a lecture about Global Warming or the best place to get Chai Tea:

Stupid Vintage Hat

Yeah, he stole it from his grandpa while the guy was in the hospital for bowl cancer. While the hat screams “assh*le” for any normal person, our hipster specimen here loves the Rat Pack association. He has “Frankie, Deano and Sammy” on vinyl – even though he was born too late to own a Walkman – and, yeah, he refers to them as “Frankie, Deano and Sammy.” Ballcaps are strictly forbidden according to the hipster fashion code – along with any sports interests beyond something obscure and stupid like cricket – though a few still rock the “ironical” John Deere or some other blue collar type trucker hat from back in the pre-hipster era when these were all the rage. “Johnny’s Lawncare! I find the concept of physical work so ironic, ‘lol’” Admittedly, while on his bicycle the hat is removed in favor of a unisex helmet.

Manicured Faux-Natural Facial Growth

“What am I, a yuppie conformist? Of course I didn’t shave this morning.” …But he did spend 17 minutes meticulously shaving the scruff off his neck. While many hipsters are unemployed and live off of UI or an indulgent relative, surprisingly some do have jobs. While at a “real” company, these are usually horse-sh*t jobs to do with social media where some guy in a suit figures that having some level of acumen at that New Age digital crap** goes hand-in-hand with not shaving. Of course, as a closeted narcissist whose thrown-together hipster look is actually a composition of deliberately selected items right down to the last thread, our specimen doesn’t really “not shave”…it’s part of the look. Wanna see real “not shaving” ? Check out a couple of the laid-off guys at your local bar around 11:30am on a Tuesday. That’s “not shaving.”

Super Thin Jeans

Way back yonder before the 1980′s everyone wore thin jeans. Since then, only homosexuals favor the constrictive cut. But not our pal. The thinner, the better. Perhaps a reaction to the gangster-baggy thing that persists among 13 year old kids, or maybe an affirmation of the style that prevailed in the 50′s…or 1850′s, hell; who knows? Wait…only homosexuals “use” to wear skinny jeans?…maybe….OK, I think we figured it out. “Cords” and other weird sh*t in super skinny size are also widely worn. Usually accessorized with some kind of beatnik belt made “organically” out of Peruvian coffee bean rinds or an extension cord or something. Never, under any circumstances, does a hipster wear shorts. It could be 120 degrees Fahrenheit out and he’d still be in his 28 waist x 30 length jeans. Cargo pants and creased slacks are also verboten. Slacks that come with a full suit are acceptable as long as it’s some sort of beige, vintage Salvation Army type suit of the kind Napoleon Dynamite would like.

Apple Product

John Q. Hipster can’t go anywhere without his iPod (..or iPhone or MacBook or iPad or some other Steve Jobs shiny-toy-for-morons) with which to listen to music by the Strokes, Metric or whatever other form of bisexual keening qualifies as “rock” these days. He uses the high-res camera on his iPhone to take pictures of things he finds “ironic” while on his day-to-day travels and immediately “tweet” them to his friends and post them to his Facebook page. You’d think from the sheer volume of hyper-leftist opinions this guy spouts that he’s read a ton of books, but he’s usually got his nose in this thing instead. He has literally every “app” except the Wall Street Journal one. If you’ve ever heard someone on the bus exclaim something like, “Oh, wow, my friend Josie’s pictures from Phuket!” do yourself a favor: don’t look up. It’s a hipster.

Local “Indie” Newspaper

International news courtesy Reuters and AP in mainstream publications? This does not interest the hipster. He needs a daily roundup of all the crappy bands playing in tiny, cramped venues around his city as well as a media voice (indeed, the paper is likely called “The Voice”) that regularly complains about how unfriendly his municipality is towards bicyclists. “When will people learn fossil fuels are a 20th century anachrononizm?…or something…” he’ll murmur to himself in a self-congratulatory manner. Usually in these rags people who express a desire for low-taxes are automatically labeled “neo-cons” and those who question the use of taxpayer money for an Inuit Pride Festival are automatically labeled “racists.” Our hipster friend eagerly tweets his concurrence with these sentiments, while sipping a latte on a Starbucks patio. While he doesn’t really identify with any oppressed group anywhere and leads a dumb, comfortable life, John Q. Hipster loves to appropriate a sense of solidarity with any that he can.

Lack of Student Debt

Most hipsters are actually the privileged offspring of the upper-middle class. A hipster lives in a world void of challenge, worry*** or deprivation. His professional parents paid for his undergrad in PolySci and his tremendously off-the-mark opinions are backed up by cobbled-together and misremembered facts and figures from a liberal arts education that largely consisted of sleeping-in and marijuana use. He expresses his opinions with all the usual force of the self-righteous, though he doesn’t really know who Charlemagne, Bismarck or Herbert Hoover was, or what “GDP” or “monetary policy” really means. He’ll properly end up in Law School once he’s towards 30, but first he plans to do Europe. And maybe Asia.

“Will my iPhone get service there? Maybe I should email Verizon…”

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*sans “bulge”…I mean, this is a hipster we’re talking about here folks.

**though he rightly questions its bottom-line relevancy and was against the decision to create the Social Media Brand Associate position in the first place.

***beyond the rumored break-up of the band MGMT, we mean. (No, not “management.” You spell it out. God, get with it.)

Col. Gaddafi says his troops showing a lot of “hustle”

Thursday, April 14th, 2011

Given the Libyan rebels‘ recent ultimatum that truce negotiations will only begin once Col. Gaddafi agrees to exile from what has been his personal playground-kingdom since 1969, the mustachioed kelpie continues to send his loyalist military forces against them, despite a storm of NATO air-to-ground missile fire. While a rabble compared to any Western army, his 40,000-odd men are still an effective force and they and their officers have largely remained loyal to their benefactor. Further, the Colonel – who alternately dresses like a gay Banana Republic general, a budget Tony Montana, or the Golden Child (inset) – has augmented them with some-say as many as 25,000 mercenaries from throughout Africa. Unable to break the stalemate and wrest territory back from these pro-democracy dissidents/moslem fanatics-in-waiting either in the west or across a large swath of Libya’s east – stalled as his men are by round-the-clock airstrikes – Gaddafi nonetheless retains control of the capital and several other large cities. Moreover, he has not neglected the perhaps influential factor of “motivation.”

“My boys are really showing a lot of hustle out there,” enthused Col. Gaddafi.

“A lot of heart and a lot of hustle,” continued the reptilian clothes whore, “It’s gonna take a lot of drive and a lot of teamwork to bring this one off. But if my boys have one thing, it’s drive and teamwork. And, of course, heart. …And hustle. Drive, teamwork, heart and hustle.”

The Colonel definitely better hope that the men loyal to his autocratic personality regime have all this and more, because while it is certainly an easy task to hit a 1987 Isuzu TF pickup full of deserters and students with the 73 mm 2A28 “Grom” low pressure smoothbore semi-automatic gun on your BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicle, it is less so when a single Western plane costing more than 10x all of your army’s equipment put together is simultaneously trying to hit you with a Hellfire missile.

Confronted with the decimation of what was his already-initially-pitiful armor, artillery and air power by the NATO air forces overhead, Col. Gaddafi replied, “You’ve got to give 110% in situations like this. 110%. If you fight with hustle and you fight with heart, you’ll post a big ‘W.’”

The dapper Colonel repeated a similar message to his most recent recruits* on a parade ground in Tripoli – where our TTT Foreign Bureau Chief was present as a guest – in an effort to motivate the troops before they were to drive all of 23 minutes west to Az-Zāwiyah to resume fighting the rebels: “Men, you’re gonna have to give 110%” (At this point a NATO bomb exploded nearby) “…OK, maybe 120%. Between 110 and 120. Maybe 130. Between 110 and 130% but certainly no more than 130. In the upper banded region of 110 and 130%.”

Suddenly an interruption emanated from the crowd of sadistic murderers- a shout by a 17 year old Somalian in the front rank – a machete hanging on his hip, ammo belts crisscrossed over a purple tie-die psychedelic t-shirt and a tobacco/heroin/cocaine hand-roll cigarette protruding from his lips – who asked loudly, “Bwana; when we’z gwana paid geht deeze time?? Badda fass’ be’fah’sure, wacal…”

Replied the visionary military genius and perennial People Magazine** Best Dressed List Winner, “You just worry about giving between 110 and 130% and you’ll get paid soon enough.”

This ignited a storm of angry shouts, “Aabahaa was!” “Abahad wasse hooyadaa was!” “Hooyadaa siilkeed!” to which the ever quick-on-his-feet Colonel replied instantly, “Men! Those rebels aren’t alone! Their wives, mothers and sisters are with them! Punish them!! Dirka dirka Allah jihad!!!”

To this exhortation, what had a second earlier been the menacing howls of a pack of rabid dogs about to turn on its owner became a euphoric celebration. After a few moments of insane revelery and wasted ammunition, the motley crue of 500 killers swarmed out of the parade ground gates to resume battle once again.

Said the Colonel, turning to our correspondent, “You see? You can drop a bomb on a tank and you can drop a bomb on a jeep, but you can’t drop a bomb on hustle. Or heart. You can neither drop a bomb on hustle nor heart.”

“…and a little raping never hurt anybody,” he added with a coy froggy smile.

In related news, Col. Gaddafi reports that his “Great Society” initiative is still on hold.

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*psychopathic African (i.e. non-Arab) mercenaries from Nigeria, Mali and Somalia, “being paid about $10,000 (USD) to join up and then I’ve heard they are being told that they will get $1,000 a day to fight.” (source). Another account: “…Chad is leading this group of foreign fighters including citizens from Niger, Mali, Zimbabwe and Liberia who are being paid between $US300 and $US2,000 a day.” (source)

**Libyan edition.


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