Aaron R. Davis
Some weeks, you have a big point you want to make. And some weeks, you just have a bunch of little points you want to annoy people with.
ITEM! Original Star Trek series producer Herb Solow was asked what he thought of the new Star Trek motion picture. Mostly he enjoyed it, and said: “The single most emblematic phrase of our original series is “Live Long and Prosper.” I hope the new series of movies will have that long life, and that Star Trek will continue to prosper.” I found that refreshingly gracious and classy, admitting that he preferred the older version but wishing the producers luck on their endeavor. Much more in the spirit of Star Trek than the whining of continuity-obsessed nerds.
ITEM! Speaking of whining nerds, I went to see Land of the Lost this weekend and had a fantastic time, even though – despite fan expectations – at no point did the film take the physical form of Will Ferrell and shove its dick in my brain and scramble my memories of the original series. I was actually able to keep the difference between the two straight! It’s a remake, fans, not a political assassination. Just ignore it and shut up.
ITEM! Have you ever noticed how nearly every time something revolutionary and wonderful comes along, some numbwit executive looking to justify his excessive salary comes along and makes it sucky? Well, News Corp.’s new chief digital officer Jonathan Miller is floating the idea of making Hulu a paid subscription service. You know, we already make Hulu profitable by sitting through a limited number of paid commercials. Don’t change it just because you’re greedy for more money. Be happy that you’ve got something that pays off at all and don’t alienate the people who like it unless you want them to just abandon it.
ITEM! The digital cable transition was signed into law in 2006. It was supposed to happen in 2008, but Congress delayed it because people still weren’t ready, despite a massive advertising and awareness campaign that led to a steady stream of commercials on local channels and constant reminders on major news programs. The government has spent $2 billion to ease the conversion, handing out vouchers for equipment and putting up a $40 million hotline. The transition will occur this Friday. And yet, according to Nielsen, three million Americans are “totally unprepared for the transition and will lose their reception.” You know what I say? Those are three million people who are going to have to get their act together when they don’t have any TV this weekend. Just shut ‘em off, they’ll figure it out. America can’t even get it in gear when their Grey’s Anatomy reruns are in danger and we expect this country to handle an economic crisis?
ITEM! A zoo in Bremerhaven, Germany has a couple of gay male penguins who were trying to mate with each other (yes, homosexuality is naturally occurring – I’ve had enough neighbors with male dogs to see that’s true). They were given an egg rejected by its parents, and now they’re the adoptive parents of a healthy penguin chick: “The two happy fathers spend their days attentively protecting, caring for and feeding their adopted offspring.” So, it’s official: the animal kingdom is more compassionate than the state of California.
ITEM! A woman I’ll do the favor of not naming sued when, after four years of eating Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries every day, she was somehow made aware that the crunchberry is actually not a real berry. Maybe she tried to buy a plant for the garden. The case was dismissed on the grounds that the box does not advertise the cereal as containing fruit, that crunchberries do no occur in nature, and that “a reasonable consumer” would know the difference. The crazy tag on this story? Someone tried to sue over Froot Loops, too. And it was the same lawyer! Why do you think he would keep taking these cases? Is he the office cut-up, or does he really think these cases are going to trial? What community college do you suppose his law degree comes from?
ITEM! In another stellar example of consumer entitlement, a man in Oregon called 911 on Memorial Day complaining that he wasn’t given the orange juice he’d ordered at McDonald’s. Wait, it gets dumber. While he was on the phone, a McDonald’s employee called 911 to complain that the customer was blocking the drive-thru. The customer spent the night in jail for abusing an emergency number. Remember the woman in Florida who called 911 because they didn’t have any more McNuggets? Or the guy in Burger King who called 911 because they wouldn’t make it his way? I know it’s frustrating not to get what you want, but when did 911 become the magic lantern you rubbed to get whatever your heart most desires? And if it was, why would you waste it on McNuggets?
ITEM! Jenny McCarthy has been leading the charge for years against responsible community, responsible parenting and the eradication of diseases by selling the sham that vaccines create autism in children. She said to Time magazine: “I do believe sadly it’s going to take some diseases coming back to realize that we need to change and develop vaccines that are safe. If the vaccine companies are not listening to us, it’s their fucking fault that the diseases are coming back.” So … the blame for the return of the measles, polio and smallpox lies not in people who don’t vaccinate, but in the people who have successfully created vaccines for those diseases? And she’s willing to see your children contract polio in pursuit of her self-righteous anger over having an autistic kid? Calling Jenny McCarthy an idiot is an insult to idiots. Calling her a deranged, dangerous fanatic, though … well, that seems right on the money to me.
Aaron R. Davis lives in a cave at the bottom of the ocean with his eyes shut tight and his fingers in his ears. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.