First, let me stop you. No, you aren’t looking at the new Famous Sasquatch Bowl with Biscuit and Entrails™ from KFC. This is, in fact, Bigfoot.
Okay, probably not.
But, man, for a few minutes you really had to think about it. It wouldn’t change the world the same way an alien ship landing on The White House lawn might, but still you have to admit that it would make the world feel a little different the next day. It would open a whole new era of possibilities for what might be out there in the woods… the dramatic search that would ensue for more of these creatures… and the eventual prosecutions, horrific injuries and night vision internet videos resulting from the inevitable attempts at having sex with them.
The story broke across the world wide web sometime Wednesday when these two fine fellows, Skip Ketchupstain (L) and Puddin Corntooth (R)......claimed they stumbled upon the dead Sasquatch, pictured in the above Igloo beer cooler, while traipsing around the woodlands of Northern Georgia during a private hiking trip they were sharing, just the two of them, out of sight from any judgmental family members, alone in the deep, dank, muggy woods, that was in no way gay.
Puddin recounts approaching the body after removing his fanny pack, mini back pack and taking his orange Hello Kitty cowboy hat in his hands, telling reporters, “I recognized it was unusual right away. The first thing that pops into your head is that it’s Bigfoot.”
With the find of the millennium in their freezer making their ice taste funny, they did what any other serious researcher would do; announce it to a web-only podcast hosted by a guy, Tom Biscardi, already busted a few years before for claiming to have a captured Bigfoot that he kept in a cage in his backyard drinking a Yoohoo.
With a legend like Biscardi in their corner, Puddin and Skip were surprised to learn some people were a little skeptical of their claims… not that they were in the woods NOT, repeat, NOT being gay, but while they were out there alone not being gay, that they found a Bigfoot and then stuffed him in the freezer next to an open bag of Orieda tater tots.
Stinging from the rebukes of every serious Bigfoot researcher in the world… And I want you to think about that statement for a minute… rebukes… from Bigfoot researchers… I don’t know if “stinging” is a powerful enough word for what that has to feel like, but, anyway, where was I? Yeah, the entire Sasquatch enthusiast scientific network all the way from the metropolises of North Saskatchewan to the intellectual centers of Polecat Bay, Florida had turned a jaundiced conjunctive eye to their spectacular findings.
Sure, all Puddin and Skip had to do to prove they had an actual Bigfoot-cicle in their freezer was to publicly present the body to the media and scientific community, but there had to be a better way. But what?
The answer was obvious, of course. With no other options, Puddin and Skip dropped Skip’s brother, Patchy Stinkfinger, off at the airport, claimed he was a scientist named Dr. Paul Van Buren (completely missing out on the more obvious name choice of Dr. Eggbert Von McEinstien Jr.), and brought him out to their luxurious estate to see and take tissue samples from the totally real Bigfoot Push-pop they discovered completely heterosexually in the wilderness.
For some crazy reason, this did not work and soon Skip, Puddin and Patchy had to release another video telling all those “internet stalkers” exactly why they perpetrated the hoax. But that should be obvious, to make everyone doubting them feel like complete total dumbasses. So, checkmate unbelievers. You can consider yourself served, bitches!
These young completely straight woodsmen finally decided to rely on the advice of the biggest expert in the field of Bigfeet, the aforementioned Tom Biscardi, holding a startling press conference where they presented their pictures and some DNA evidence, but no body, to the world in the conference room of a Super 8. The findings have already blown the lid off all known Sasquatch research. Just read this from the first round of DNA testing:
“Of three samples in a preliminary DNA test, one came back inconclusive, one contained traces of human DNA and one had traces of opossum DNA”
Bigfoot is not a primate at all, but some bizarre, hell-borne mutation of man and Possum. You read right, God help us all Bigfoot is in reality POSSUM MAN!
How fucked up is that? I may never sleep soundly knowing that every time I pass a dead possum splattered out in the middle of the road it could actually be the larval form of one of these noble creatures. I may never be able to drive at night… or comfortably eat at my aunt’s house, for that matter, ever again.
We now get to watch this story as it develops. These heroes will one day allow each and every one of us to take a good, long look into the lifeless eyes of what may be the missing link... something thought of as a monster by many… something described as possessing a terrible noxious smell that burns the nose and stings the eyes. And then, after we’ve finished looking at and smelling Biscardi, maybe we’ll take a glance at that fake Bigfoot they’ve got in the refrigerator too.Read more..!
You See, I Have These 5 Skills...
By Adam Greene
Nunchuku skills, bow hunting skills, computer hacking skills…all important to anyone with the desire to successfully navigate daily life. I too have a set of highly specialized skills. Skills that are important, hard to come by and completely worthless to me today.
Many times I’ve found myself waxing philosophically about my bygone days of gainful employment…or, rather, sitting straight up in bed with a puddle of my own flop sweat pooling under me, screaming into the night from a nightmare in which I found myself, once again, calculating mortgage rates or cold calling potential vacationers. While I might find myself in my underwear, nude or simply shirtless, the true horror of the dreams remains constant; A real job. Even typing it out right now makes my hands tremble a little.
It occurs to me now looking back at the 18+ years of work history that I have amassed a handful of highly sought after skills. Skills that would be important for a person targeting the various jobs that I accidentally stumbled my way into. Many times, while keeping my computer mine free or secretly surfing the internet, I would think to myself, not only is this job a curse upon me, but by making even the slightest effort to hold onto it, I was actually keeping another person from having it. Someone who might actually enjoy capitalizing on a fellow human’s financial mistakes, misery and poor judgment by tricking them into a high interest personal loan. Being in possession of a soul and a modicum of basic human kindness, I was never going to be that person.
These skills are highly specific and would not necessarily pop immediately to mind. For instance, the ability to successfully work on the roof of a house without falling to my death, though very important to me, is not something I could list on a resume or job application. As I find heights almost as mind-numbingly frightening as sitting astride a running motorcycle, I don’t foresee ever using this skill again. But, the fact that I did have it is not only testament to the varied jobs that I’ve trapped myself in over the years, but my almost incredible ability to survive them.
So this will not be a list of skills I don’t plan on using anymore. The fact is, that there are plenty skills in my possession, as well as a bachelor’s degree and various professional accreditations that, if I ever utilized in any way from this day forward, would represent a monumental failure in achieving my actual life goals.
For instance, I can change the wheel pin on a riding lawnmower. I don’t see this having a positive or negative effect on my future employment. I can also do something as impressive-sounding as administering an AIDS test, but since all that required was cramming a toothbrush-shaped stick into an innocent victim’s mouth and then placing it in a plastic bag, I don’t feel it granted me a specialized ability.
Also, this list will contain no skills amassed in my earliest employment as a cook at Captain D’s or as a laborer on multiple construction sites. Though Captain D’s is not a place I would choose to work at again or visit to eat anything on the menu, the most important skill I learned there was the proper way to deep fry slabs of meat and wads of dough. I think we all know how useful this knowledge has been to me in my adult life, as I’m pretty sure my blood cholesterol could be refined to fuel an F-22 Raptor.
No, these skills must be important. They must be skills that, if I ever had reason to fill out a job application, I would list and highlight. They must be specialized and highly valued in either one particular industry or just a handful that I will never participate in again from now until the day the sun burns out. So here we go:
Skill #1. I can pinpoint the position of multiple satellites in geosynchronous orbit 22,300 miles above the Earth’s Equator.
Oh yeah. That’s right. I can totally do that.
Obviously, you think this talent was picked up in my time with the Special Forces. Parachuting into hostile territory, I and my band of brothers would scour the desert or countryside, searching for enemy encampments. Discovering the terrorists’ location with my special satellite-tracking abilities, I would contact a nearby carrier group to launch a sortie of Comanche attack helicopters to reduce everyone inside the camp to a fine red mist.
That would have been an awesome way to learn this skill. Unfortunately, that’s not how I learned to do it.
Nope, my learning technique required a lot more crawling around under mobile homes than it did fighting the War Against Terror. I picked this particular skill up in the final year before I began writing full time installing satellite dishes. Fighting the forces of evil? No, sir. Setting up a satellite dish and receiver in a man named Pickle’s camper trailer so he could sneak and watch the Playboy channel without being caught by his wife? You betcha.
True story: Once, during the end of my satellite installation tenure, I was called out to a community called Mooresburg to do what should have been a quick install. It was a single-room deal that shouldn’t have been much trouble at all. When I arrived at the destination, a mobile home, you’ll be shocked to learn, I found my client, who, for the sake of this article, I’ll call Floho. His real name rhymed with that, but was even more ridiculous. Anyway, Floho met me as I arrived wearing a pair of neon orange short shorts, green flip flops and, well, nothing else.
Floho was my constant companion during the entire installation where I learned that he had just been set free from prison after 15 years for killing a man. Now, back home with his elderly father and mother, he drew a monthly, “crazy check” and was using it to get everyone “teevee.” Floho informed me that for extra money, he would participate in backroom barefisted boxing matches. He held his fists up before me and said, “I can make some good money with these.” I nodded, figuring he probably could. He was shorter than me, but looked solid and the innumerable scars on his face, neck and bare chest were enough evidence to make me buy his streetfighting and prison stories.
He then told me that I had a pretty smile.
I was then informed that he wanted to get all the channels, especially the dirty ones, so he could oil himself up and go crazy. I nodded once more, being careful to not smile in his presence again.
Yeah. This all really happened.
Once in the living room of the trailer, I met Floho’s aforementioned mother. As I installed her receiver, she told me of the cancer that had eaten away part of the left side of her face through a halo of cigarette smoke. The cancer was gone now, but as she stubbed out a cigarette butt and immediately reached for a new one, I realized she, evidently, had no desire for it to stay that way.
She sat at the table looking like a combination of Two-Face from Batman and Jonah Hex, telling me that she had experienced a rough year.
Floho’s brother, Bloho, presumably, had recently been shot to death in a barfight. It was not hard to believe, but Floho insisted on backing up her story, if only as a pretext, to talk once again about how pretty my smile was. He had me smile for his mother, Two-Face Hex, who agreed that I did have fetching set of teeth. Damn all 32 of them. Frankly, this was not the first time my smile has gotten me into trouble, but that is a tale for another day.
Finished with the installation, I successfully made my escape. Floho did not kill me after all, to my surprise, nor did he ever once put on a shirt. I was also spared any sighting of oils or “going crazy,” thank the good Lord.
Skill #2. I can read and understand a credit report.
I’m not talking about a credit score (which is all that generally matters in your daily urge to fatten up the albatross of debt around your neck), but your actual credit report. That phone book sized document with all the “Is,” “Rs” and nonsensical numbers with various company names and dates attached that you ordered off the free credit report internet site. I can understand all of it. Yes, even that row of crazy stars and slashes (******/*****). I know what all that stuff means.
I won’t tell you, because it’s as boring to learn as you think it is. I nabbed this talent while working for a high interest loan company mentioned above. The reason this loan company didn’t care about a credit score was that they wanted customers to skip out on the loan. In fact, if you ran your monthly report only loaning money to people who needed it and could afford to pay it back, you would be “retrained.”
I myself was “retrained” three times in my seven months with the company, even winning an all expenses paid trip to picturesque Joplin, Missouri, where I spent the week being told by a tubby blonde girl through a shit-eating grin that, “all of our customers eventually go bad. We just have to keep renewing their accounts as long as we can until then.” She was one of the “best” managers in the company. Hand picked to train managers like “me” in her superior collection, harassment and loan techniques.
When I returned home, I knew what I had to do to be a better manager; sell my soul to Satan. Instead of doing that, I decided to tell the Regional Manager to fire me on the spot so I could sit on my ass and draw unemployment for three months. This particular skill is one I’m proud to have attained. Twice more did I worm my way into free unemployment money after figuratively and literally telling bosses to kiss my backside. At this point, I could teach this one in a dojo and be called “Sensei.”
Skill #3. I can create an entire newspaper section from scratch.
This skill is called “Pagination” and not only do I know how to do it, but the fact that I ever had to learn it makes me incredibly sad.
The dirty little secret of sportswriting is that 90% of the jobs you can get across the country require the writers and editors to paginate their own section. So all that time you spent thinking you’ll be attending private parties with Vince Young, playing 18 holes of golf with Jeff Fisher or being named godfather to Peyton Manning Jr. will instead be spent stuck in a cubicle clicking a mouse (probably on a Mac, God help you) and pulling stories off the AP wire while the production guys hover around you talking about the most effective brand of stinky deer piss or the “kick-assness” of the new Cannibal Corpse album, depending on their age, weight and amount of facial jewelry.
Skill #4. I can feature-sell a mobile home.
Hey, they can’t all be harnessing signals from outer space, people.
While this one doesn’t look impressive on paper, trust me, if I ever wanted to sell mobile homes for a national mobile retailer again, and I don’t, this is a talent I would be expected to demonstrate. Here’s the secret…or rather, what the skill actually entails.
The first thing you should realize is that no one walks onto a mobile home lot with even the slightest shred of hope. People with hope buy homes that don’t need 14 inch rims. What feature-selling does is help these hopeless people regain a small amount of their human dignity as you talk up what amounts to basic building materials like fireproof sheetrock, laminate flooring and high-low purple carpet. You must help these poor, despondent folks see that the ceiling fan and “wooden looking” door frames somehow make up for the fact that a pretty non-inventive thief could simply drive their home far, far away.
Part of the “feature sell” is putting the screws to a customer. While a normal home “sells itself” what with its solid foundation, four sturdy exterior walls and ability to appreciate in value, a mobile home needs a little more push. I was actually instructed, via training tape, to refer to each trailer as the customer’s “dream home.” Uh huh. DREAM HOME. In fact, the exact phrase I was supposed to use when trying to convince some poor schlub when he started to sober up from the intoxicating allure of the basic Sears storebrand appliances and cardboard televisions, was to throw this phrase at him, “I understand that, but I’d hate for you to lose the chance to own your DREAM HOME…”
At this point, the guy either woke up, thinking, “Dream home? Dream? What are dreams? What does that word even mean? Could there have once been a time when I knew of such things? Might I have once had a dream?” If this happened, needless to say, any hope of a sale was history.
But, if that customer looked deep inside of himself and found only a cavernous gaping void…a dank, infinity-sized maw with the gravitational pull of a collapsed star, then maybe a sizable sales commission was heading my way.
Skill #5. I’m a master at Phone Pro phone etiquette
“Phone Pro” is a training system teaching customer service representatives the proper way to take complete mental command of a problem caller to assist him with his problem and, failing that, tell him exactly how far he should shove his head up his own ass.
The problem with working phone customer service is, well, the people who call needing customer service. I was hired in by Philips Electronics back in 1996 to support the launch of WebTV. This product is still around, called MSN TV and if you’ve ever received an e-mail from your great aunt, reading “I’M SNEDING YOU AN MAIL MESSAGE FROIM THE TV ENTERWIBS!!!!!!”, I’m one of the people you can thank for that.
While the WebTV was a simple product to use, hooking it up to a 1972 Zenith Chromacolor 2 wooden console television was not easy as you’d think. Additionally, there are evidently a great many TVs and VCRs built in the United Arab Emirates, Azerbaijan, East Timor and the Mediterranean island of Mypos that come only with instructions written in what appears at first glance to be Klingon or some rare form of Elvish.
For some reason, these electronics are marketed specifically to elderly men over the age 117. Couple this with WebTV’s marketing strategy aimed at customers in the 140 to 180 range and this was recipe for some pretty heated phone calls to customer service. Since the only Myposian representative in the United States was running a mail-order Bibby Babka business from his cousin’s living room, we were on our own.
Did this stop us from learning how to program and hook up the WebTV to the Myposian TV? Well, of course not. Don’t be ridiculous.
With Phone Pro, you wouldn’t tell these grouchy old bastards what they NEEDED to do to make their WebTV work. You’d tell them what they WANTED to do. That was the skill. You chose your words in an almost hypnotic fashion, convincing the customer that all this was really his idea. You were just a phonebound Sherpa, guiding the way up the electronic mountain. Eventually, either you would lead the customer to a successful installation of his WebTV to his 1958 Philco Predicta tabletop or help him inform himself that he’s a moron with a big pile of dog shit where his brain should be. Phone Pro is like learning a Jedi mind trick that only works on octogenarians.
So there you have it. A list of valued skills that took me years to acquire and master that are now as useless to me as a third nipple. My wish for all of you reading this is that you can someday look back on your time walking the Earth with a similar list as varied and ridiculous as mine that you will never, ever need.
Poor Sport: U! S! A! U! S! A!
By Adam Greene
The 1980s was a great time to be an American if you enjoyed being hated. Not that we aren’t hated today. Terrorists and evil dictators despise us, sure, but they always have. Crazy people have never needed an excuse to be crazy. Pamela Anderson getting a bikini wax last week created as many terrorists as any bomb we ever dropped. Let’s just hope a Danish newspaper doesn’t publish an editorial cartoon about it.
Europeans, for their part, seem to offer no more than a snotty disdain. Kind of like the jealous, pimple-faced Goth geek in high school. They watch the quarterback win the big game, nail the hottest cheerleader, and drive the fastest car. Hating him for his good looks and success, they gain self worth only by pretending amongst their nerdy friends that the vampire poetry on their weblog and their appreciation of Morrisey lyrics is somehow cooler than throwing touchdowns and having sex with another person.
Back in the 80’s, though, crazy terrorists were the least of our problems. We had half a planet that we could go to war with at any moment, destroying everything on Earth but ants and cockroaches. Americans, in general, were against that.
With global thermonuclear war off the table, we had to find another way to fight the Russians. For a brief, wonderful time, victory after victory over the Soviets was enjoyed as John Rambo shot the commies in their faces with explosive arrows, Chuck Norris rendered them insensate with various karate attacks, and Patrick Swayze led a rag-tag group of teenagers against an entire USSR battalion with only the power of their youthful patriotism and the greatest battle cry of all time; “WOLVERINES!”
But it was in the realm of sport that America experienced its greatest victories against the Evil Empire. Rocky knocked out Ivan Drago in front of his own home crowd in Moscow. In America, Hulkamania ran wild on Nikolai Volkov and the Koloff family’s evil scheme to dominate the NWA was thwarted almost single-handedly by a fat guy in a cowboy hat who went by the nickname “The American Dream.”
Oh, and the U.S. Men’s Olympic Hockey team defeated the Russians in the 1980 Winter Olympics. If shit like that means anything to you.
In those days, drunkenly shouting our country’s initials to fire up an athlete or fake wrestler was perfectly acceptable. It wasn’t rare at all to hear loud chants of U! S! A! U! S! A! as the American basketball team repeatedly dunked over the heads of a group of 5’4” Luxemburgians. More recently, though, such jingoistic displays seem to have fallen out of favor… as the rest of the world hasn’t so much caught up with us, as they have fallen so far behind in everything that truly matters that it just seemed kind of mean.
For a while it was okay to be a United States Citizen and not let every other country know exactly how badly they sucked. We took it for granted. We’re Americans. The rest of you guys suck. It was like saying “the sky is blue.” No reason to even bring it up. But the last few years the rest of the world has gotten so damn pissy, pretending, at least publicly, that we, as Americans, should give a damn about their thoughts, feelings and opinions. Absolutely ridiculous. Who do these foreign bastards think they are? Us?
So, this being the first Olympics since the planet got all uppity, it was time to break out the old classic. Make no mistake, countries of the world, we’ve not forgotten how awesome we are. We’ve just tried to be cool about it. After U.S. figure skater Sasha Cohen completed her short program Wednesday night it happened. Slowly at first, it gained steam and by the time Sasha took her seat to wait for her scores, no one attending or viewing the event could miss the shouts of U! S! A!
That’s right. It’s back. It was like Hulk Hogan had kicked the Iron Sheik in the face with his giant yellow boot all over again. I dabbed a tear as Sasha got her marks and took the lead. In another country, a group of Americans attending the most popular event at the Olympic winter games stuck it right up the planet’s ass. I’ve not been this proud to be an American since Lee Greenwood, on a secret mission to steal back Ronald Reagan’s brain, throat-chopped Mikhail Gorbachev before escaping Leningrad in his jet pack.
In the spirit of Olympic American greatness, we’ll now take a look at our beloved country’s five best and worst performers of the 2006 Winter Olympiad.
The Five Best
5. Hannah Teter. Gold Medalist. Women’s Half Pipe.
Hannah, at 20 years old, isn’t the most famous member of the women’s snowboarding team; Gretchen Bleiler’s tit display in her FHM photo shoot in 2004 made sure of that. What she is, though, is a tough little Vermonter who showed up at Torino with two bad knees. Riders have two runs to get the highest overall score in Olympic snowboarding and, like Shaun White, Hannah won the gold with her first, receiving a 44.6. Gold already in hand, all she did on her second run was land an even higher score, 46.4, effectively winning both first and second place.
4. Shani Davis. Gold Medalist 1000m Speed Skate, Silver Medalist 1500m Speed Skate
Yeah, Shani came off as kind of an ass after publicly feuding with fellow US Speed Skater, Chad Hedrick, but it doesn’t change the history he made at these Olympic Games. Shani was the first black American in history to win a solo gold medal at the Winter Olympics. He then followed that up with a silver medal in the 1,500. He skipped the team pursuit and was criticized for it, because he wanted to be at full strength for the 1,000. He was and he won.
3. Chad Hedrick. Gold Medalist 5000m Speed Skate, Silver Medalist 10000m Speed Skate, Bronze Medalist 1500m Speed Skate
Chad had the chance to make history at this Olympics by winning 5 medals, which I think fueled the problems between him and Shani Davis. While not succeeding in his main goal, Chad still takes home a full collector’s set of medals from the Torino games.
2. Shaun White. Gold Medalist, Men’s Half Pipe. Flying Tomato.
So many times when you follow the Olympics, the odds-on front-runner coming in will find a way to blow his or her chances almost completely. Not Shaun. The prohibitive favorite coming into the games and the uncontested best half pipe snowboarder in the world, all Shaun did at the Torino Olympics was what he was supposed to do. Win the thing. He then used the fame and public platform his Olympic gold brought him to attempt to publicly hook up with the aforementioned American Figure Skating cutie, Sasha Cohen. That, my friends, is how it should be done.
1. Apolo Anton Ohno. Gold Medalist 500m Short Track, Bronze Medalist 1000m Short Track, Bronze Medalist Short Track Team Relay
Apolo exemplifies everything that is right about the Olympics. His love for the games led him to reject the fame and fortune that awaited him after the 2002 Salt Lake games and return instead to the US Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs where he lived and trained for the ’06 games full time. Apolo is the consummate professional athlete and reaped the rewards of his hard work by skating a perfect race in the 500.
Tannith Belbin and Ben Agosto. Silver Medalists Ice Dancing.
Tannith and Ben won the first Ice Dancing medal of any kind for the United States in the last 762 years…or something. But that’s not what’s important here. What is of note is that Tannith, while being one of the best ice dancers in the world, was also, without a doubt, the hottest female athlete at the games. And facts like that should always get special recognition. Tannith, I’m still not convinced what you do is an actual sport, but I’ll gladly watch you do it.
The Five Worst
5. U.S. Men’s Hockey Team. Record 1 win, 4 losses and 1 tie. National Embarrassment.
Of all the sports named after horse shit, hockey has to at least be in the top three or four. You’d think with actual professional hockey players taking the ice there would be a real chance for the USA to win more than one game. You would have been wrong. The US’ four losses came right in a row, too. It’s difficult work to be this inept at something you get paid to do. And for that the US Hockey Team should be commended. It’s hard to be so good at being so bad.
4. Daron Rahlves. Finished 10th in the Downhill, 9th in the Super G and was DNFed the Giant Slalom.
Daron is the most accomplished skier in US history. He just hasn’t accomplished any of it at the Olympics. Rahlves was the favorite in the Downhill before the race and barely managed to crack the top ten. Sadly, this was Rahlves’ third and final Olympic games. The fact that, with all his successes, he never managed to get onto an Olympic podium should keep his therapist in new Porsches for the next decade or so.
3. Johnny Weir. 5th place Men’s Figure Skating.
Johnny is under the mistaken impression that anyone in the world gives a shit that he’s gay. I know. A gay male figure skater? Who could ever imagine that such a thing could even be possible? To be clear, Johnny Weir is THE professional figure skater that isn’t a heterosexual. Like you, my mind is completely blown. Johnny seems to also believe he’s some sort of rebel for designing his girly skating unitards. A gay dude who designs clothes? This is a guy who really plays by his own rules.
Johnny is a three-time US champion and Junior World Champion. While Russia’s Yuvgeny Plushenko had the gold medal in his reach around hand before he even arrived in Torino, Johnny should have owned the silver. Maybe if Weir wasn’t so concerned with how gay he is at any given moment, he could actually perform at his true potential. Johnny, we don’t give a damn. Really. Calm the Hell down.
2. Lindsey Jacobellis. Silver Medalist Women’s Snowboardcross.
The only medalist in the bottom five list, Lindsey has forever earned the distinction as the living example of how to screw yourself out of a gold medal. Coming into the final jump in the Women’s Snowboardcross final, Jacobellis was far ahead of any of the other racers. All she had to do was make it down the hill and she had the gold by about a mile and a half. So what does she do? Pull some stupid snowboard jump-trick on the final hill and bust her ass on a wipe-out. By the time she gets up, Switzerland’s Tanja Freidan, who before Lindsey became the poster child for irony was about two countries behind, passes her and wins the gold. Lindsey gets back on the track and gets the silver as well as an entire nation’s scorn. Now, much like Bill Buckner and Monica Lewinski, Lindsey Jacobellis’ name becomes a new descriptive term for blowing something important.
1. Bode Miller. Finished 5th in the Downhill, DQed in the combined, DNFed the Super G, finished 6th in the Giant Slalom and DNFed the Slalom.
Bode Miller is the defending World Cup Champion, the only American to win it in the last 22 years. He won two silver medals in the 2002 Salt Lake City Games and is probably the most talented Alpine Skier on Planet Earth. Bode was in five events in Torino and was legitimately expected to medal in all five. He failed. Bode is the first to pretend that going 0 for 5 in the Olympics isn’t important, but that’s bullshit. He showed up to the games out of shape and spent his off days getting drunk and trying his best to catch an Italian STD in town. He came to Torino thinking he was going to win. That’s what all his Nike commercials are really saying. Just replace everything that comes out of Bode’s mouth on film with, “Winning isn’t important because I know I’m going to win.” Bode thought he was so much better than every other racer that he could stop working and training as hard as the rest of them. It doesn’t work that way. The truth is, Bode is better than everybody else. Probably lots better. But that doesn’t mean he can put a gold medal run together with a Jack D hangover and a mouth full of oozing Lovecraftian cold sores. Professional athletes have a small window of opportunity to be the best that they can be. In sports, you’re over the hill and spent at 34. To have the gifts and potential that Bode has and not take full advantage of them is just sad to watch.
Resi Stiegler. Finished 11th in the Women’s Combined, 12th in Women’s Slalom
Resi doesn’t get a dishonorable mention because she performed below her ability. These spots are actually very good for her. Her problem was that she races with ridiculous little tiger ears glued to her helmet. This is wrong on more levels than I could ever list here. In Resi’s defense, she has been unfairly criticized for wearing a pearl necklace in her Olympic races. Who does that hurt? I see nothing wrong with a young woman enjoying a pearl necklace. Resi should be able to have a pearl necklace whenever she wants. Read more..!
25 to Where?
In the Zone Video Game Review
By Adam Greene
The Game: 25 to Life
For: PC, X Box and Playstation 2
In approaching my first game review, I wanted to come up with a new kind of ratings system for my final verdict. Doing some half-assed research in the nerd cesspool of video game press, I found that the most popular method of analysis seems to be the ten point scale.
Now, there is some variation here. You have what I like to refer to as the “Sane Human Being Method”, exemplified like so:
“I found the game enjoyable. It did have some problems, but I give it a 7 out of 10,”
This review works. It’s easy to understand and was obviously written by a person who can properly function in society.
The problem is, that’s not what you see most of the time. What you do find is what I like to call “The 45 Year-Old Potential Serial Killer with a Wallet Chain, Splotchy Beard and Aquaman T-shirt Stretched Tight Over a Bulbous Belly and Tucked Into His Black Jeans Approach”, which, frighteningly, looks like this:
“I’m afraid I must give this game’s graphics an 8.2, while the sound gets a 7.5, The controls get a 7.9, while the gameplay receives an 8.3. Finally, for lastability and genre appeal, I’m going to have to give Super Mario Shroomin’ Lemonade Stand a 9,8 for the return to its playful platformer roots, so hard to find in our new obsession with all things HD and 3D.”
A person who would write a review like this is clearly not only a serious danger to himself and those around him, but also anyone who lives within driving distance of his VW van.
A handful of mavericks out there assign stars or point their thumbs up or down, but I say “screw that.” I don’t want to consult some sort of metric star conversion chart to figure out if I need to buy a game and neither do you. Plus, I want to play the damn game. I can’t be shoving and poking my thumbs in every direction. I need them for the controller.
When it comes to video games, here’s what I think about: “Should I buy it, rent it, or skip it.” So that’s going to be my system. It may vary some. I may word it differently, but at the end of the day, you’ll know whether the game designers deserve a pat on the back or a crane kick to the balls.
So let’s do this.
25 to Life is the newest addition to the thug game genre which has grown so crowded of late that it’s fast becoming the American answer to the Japanese big-eyed, whiney, androgynous teenage-boy RPG’s. And it’s almost as disturbing. One of the things that makes video games so successful is that they allow the average person a certain degree of fantasy fulfillment. As a kid, I dreamed about being a Jedi Knight, NFL Superstar, kick ass space marine and jet fighter pilot. You know what I never imagined myself doing? Selling crack or killing a prostitute. Looking at the popularity of these crime based titles, I must have been alone in that.
In story mode, you start out playing Andre “Freeze” Francis who has just returned home after a long day of whipping prostitutes with car antennas and selling rock cocaine. His son Darnell greets him at the door, brimming with pride at all the caps his father has been popping in bustas throughout his workday. His wife, Monica, on the other hand, isn’t quite as enamored with the government housing unit and 20 inch TV purchased from the local pawn shop as her son is. After sharing a kiss, Monica gets angry because she smelled Freeze’s gangsta friend Shaun on his clothes.
Yes. Let me write that again, She SMELLS Shaun. On Freeze’s body.
Now, to this point I could have imagined the life of a hard core drug dealing banger on the corner, and, I have to tell you, somehow getting your friend’s musky stank all over you didn’t really seem like part of the job description. This subplot is never revisited in the game, and we’re only left to wonder about Shaun and Freeze’s love that dare not speak its name.
Monica and her giant breasts demand that Freeze “get out the game.” Which is great advice, not only for him, but for anyone who has made the mistake of purchasing or renting 25 to Life. Freeze meets back up with Shaun and, resisting the urge to make sweaty man love, they cut a deal that will get Freeze “out the game” after one last drug buy. Of course, Shaun sets Freeze up and this is where our own “game” begins.
The genius of Grand Theft Auto’s gameplay is that, while you’re a bad guy, you don’t have to be too bad. You can jack cars, nail prostitutes and set criminals on fire, sure. But, in committing all those felonies, you can still avoid killing innocent people and police officers. Which is a positive thing if, you know, you’re not a sociopath. 25 to Life doesn’t give you those options.
In the opening level, the game forces you to shoot around 472 police officers right in the face. Even worse, as the poor bastards die they’ll say things like “Oh Jesus, please forgive me for all my sins.” Way to hammer home the fact that I’m playing as an evil, murderous piece of shit. Thanks, designers. You could have at least mentioned “This title will make you hate yourself” as a game feature on the box.
Gameplay itself is clunky and unresponsive. Your character runs like he’s been smoking his own product and the aim controls are only passable once you change the default look sensitivity settings. Even then, they take a while to get used to, as you have to forcibly unlearn all the muscle memory you’ve acquired from playing well designed third person shooters like Max Payne, Socom and Hitman.
Which brings me to Eidos, the publisher. They’re the same company that makes Hitman. Was there no way to put Hitman’s engine into this game? The only thing it would have changed, from what I can tell, is that my thug ass murdering idiot couldn’t hop around like a moron while widowing every policeman’s wife within a four state area. Is there a demand for more hopping in third person shooters that I don’t know about? Was somebody playing Super Mario Sunshine one day, thinking, “You know what this game needs? More shotgun blasts to the gonads. I’ve got to find someone who can make this dream happen.”
You’re not stuck playing as Freeze for the entire game. You also get the pleasure of playing as his boyfriend Shaun, who, believe it or not, is an even bigger douchebag. For a brief respite you do get to be Detective Lester Williams and gun down enemies free of guilt. What you can’t do is keep your rookie partner alive or keep his dumb ass from shooting you in the back of the head anytime he’s behind you. The enemy A.I. isn’t any better. Their tactical strategy consists of jogging straight at you until they run out of ammo, then standing out in the open while reloading. To make up for that, though, the designers made each enemy a crack shot from any distance, regardless of the weapon being used. Idiots.
It was while trying out the online play where I had the most fun with the game. Not with any of the mediocre multi-player options, but with the character modifications. You start out with some generic gang and police models, but using the features you unlock while making your way through the story mode, you can create some awesome guys like my Star Spangled Ninja Gangster.
Or my police officer who looked like Kevin Federline dressed up like Chuck Norris for Halloween. I don’t know how I could have been more pleased.
The online games themselves are just gangster riffs on “slayer” and “capture the flag,” all without any of the game controls that make them fun. I took it online on a Saturday night along with plenty of other people who’d made the mistake of buying or renting the game. I played three “wars” and, feeling like I had taken enough abuse for the 9ine team, turned it off for good. Usually getting the opportunity to shoot strangers from all over the world in the neck and upper torso is enough to keep me entertained for an evening. Not this time. Even watching my Kevin Federline/Chuck Norris guy get riddled with bullets couldn’t keep me interested. A fact that, even now, seems almost impossible to believe.
The verdict: No surprise here, Skip It.Read more..!