Judgment day

Two days after September 11, Falwell fingered those who were responsible. “I know that I’ll hear from them for this. But, throwing God out successfully with the help of the federal court system, throwing God out of the public square, out of the schools. The abortionists have got to bear some burden for this because God will not be mocked. And when we destroy 40 million little innocent babies, we make God mad. I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way — all of them who have tried to secularize America — I point the finger in their face and say you helped this happen“.

Apartheid supporter and human blimp Jerry Falwell is dead at 73. Luckily for him, there’s no such place as hell.

Wonkette already went ahead and ran this infamous bit of nostalgia from Hustler magazine, but I thought I’d pile on anyway. It’s still pretty funny twenty years later.

Jerry Falwell: My first time was in an outhouse outside Lynchburg, Virginia.

Interviewer: Wasn’t it a little cramped?

Falwell: Not after I kicked the goat out.

Interviewer: I see. You must tell me all about it.

Falwell: I never really expected to make it with Mom, but then after she showed all the other guys in town such a good time, I figured, “What the hell!”

Interviewer: But your Mom? Isn’t that a bit odd?

Falwell: I don’t think so. Looks don’t mean that much to me in a woman.

Interviewer: Go on.

Falwell: Well, we were drunk off our God-fearing asses on Campari, ginger ale and soda—that’s called a Fire and Brimstone—at the time. And Mom looked better than a Baptist whore with a $100 donation.

Interviewer: Campari in the crapper with Mom . . . how interesting. Well how was it?

Falwell: The Campari was great but Mom passed out before I could come.

Interviewer: Did you ever try it again?

Falwell: Sure. Lots of times. But not in the outhouse. Between Mom and the shit, the flies were too much to bear.

Interviewer: We meant the Campari.

Falwell: Oh, yeah, I always get sloshed before I go out to the pulpit. You don’t think I could lay down all that bullshit sober, do you?

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Neglect


So long, old friend.

Wow, I’ve been really terrible about updating this blog. In my defense, I’ve been sick with a cold and had out-of-town visitors this week. Still! No excuses. I promise to try and be more productive — if that’s a word one can use in regard to blog posting.

So much has happened in the last week, too. Blair announced his resignation, Chirac’s successor was elected. But most importantly: Bob Barker is throwing in the towel. Hank Stuever gives the Price is Right host a funny (and only slightly mocking) send-off in a piece from the Washington Post:

Just the sound of it feels, somehow nostalgically, like being in bed with the flu. (“Come on down!” roars the announcer, Rich Fields — who replaced the late Rod Roddy in 2003, who replaced Johnny Olson in 1986 — as you beg some 7Up and toast to stay on down.) There is the sound of it starting at 11 a.m., over those gooey-warm CBS airwaves, just when the day is still technically young and yet already somehow wasted. It feels like skipping class again and again, the MWF 10:30 section of Lit 125: The Emerging Self.

That sounds about right. Is it possible, by the way, to have a television set in America without having seen the show? And could it ever work without the Barkman and his preposterous mic?

God vs. atheism, unplugged


These two maybe have more in common than they realize.

It is a wonderful world: two of our culture’s most entertaining buffoons, Al Sharpton and Christopher Hitchens, got together last night to debate the existence of God. I’d say this event could be seen as a pretty good argument for either side. It was apparently a very well-mannered and thoughtful debate, truth be told. (How disappointing.) To sum up: Hitchens blasted religion for its propagation of “blood-stained old myths” and “eye-for-an-eye vengeance”, while Sharpton stuck to defending an abstract Almighty rather than actual organized religion, agreeing that the latter has been “misused.”

Despite my general agreement with Hitchens, Reverend Al unquestionably landed the best jab of the night:

“At the end what is refreshing is that you are a man of faith,” Mr. Sharpton told Mr. Hitchens, to much laughter, “because any man that at this point has faith that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq has more faith than any religious person I know.”

Point, set, match.

Beer factor

From today’s NY Times, a review of a book I can totally get behind, The Joy of Drinking:

Beer was always big, and may even be healthy. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Holland writes, “claims that a moderate beer drinker — whatever that means — swallows 11 percent of his dietary protein needs, 12 percent of the carbohydrates, 9 percent of essential phosphorus, 7 percent of his riboflavin, and 5 percent of niacin. Should he go on to immoderate beer drinking, he becomes a walking vitamin pill.” That last is an assertion upon which any given issue of Science Times will be sure to pounce. Still, I’ll take it, having long since abandoned hope of someone coming up with any health benefits of smoking.

Political science fiction

I haven’t had much of a chance to blog lately, as you may have noticed. Among other things distracting my precious attention, I just got back from a trip to my ancestral homeland — Scotland. Sadly, I didn’t fork over the 20 pounds for a kilt. I did, however, see a lot of beautiful countryside and drink some world-class scotch.

In lieu of a real blog post, I’m going to do the bullet point thing, topped off with another installment of “Van on YouTube.” This week’s topic … politics.

And, finally, the promised Van video, which once again I have to credit The Dizzies with finding (or one of his students anyway). Enjoy!

A change is gonna come


“The royal we, man…”

It’s been brought to my attention that certain readers (both of you) find “the royal we” to be distracting (some even say it’s “infuriating”!). Fair enough. From here on out, I will be me. The thinking was that getting away from “I” would be freeing somehow — especially since this isn’t meant to be a personal journal. But the reality is that it comes off as self-important. Whoops!

Deliriously stupid

Let’s be clear: it would be a minor tragedy if Alec Baldwin were to never act again. Despite being in a lot of crap, the guy is undoubtedly one of the best actors of his generation — from the motivational speaker in Glengarry Glen Ross to (our own personal favorite) his fulsome cop in The Departed:

He is also, judging from that now-infamous voicemail, apparently a huge asshole. But how many of your favorite performers are? Surely a good number. Isn’t this just part of a devil’s bargain — big talent comes with bigger demons? Who wants their entertainers to be saints? We won’t stop enjoying Alec Baldwin’s acting anymore than we’ll stop enjoying Kramer on Seinfeld.

To wit: you, like us, may love Eddie Murphy from Beverly Hills Cop and his years on SNL. But (and maybe you already knew this and we’re just late to the party) in addition to being a blindingly charismatic performer, he is also a fairly despicable human being. If you need proof, here is the beginning (the beginning! He doesn’t waste any time getting to the hateful slurs) of his stand-up act from Delirious [warning: vulgar, offensive and unfunny]:

Oh, Eddie. It’s almost like you’re trying to compensate for your transvestite-hooker-loving ways.