end run brought to you by ok soda
  April 14, 2007
entertain me! (Pilot #2)

Comedy pilot for AOL. Includes a VH1-styled "fashion police" parody, alongside a short documentary-esque comedy segment about modern urban office life in NYC. Also, puppies.

Hosted by Jordan Carlos. See Episode 1 here.

entertain me! (Pilot #1)

Comedy pilot for AOL. Includes a piece about Ken Burns analyzing NBC's The Office, alongside red-carpet interview footage with Julianne Moore and David Duchovny, et al.

Hosted by Jordan Carlos. See Episode 2 here.

Domains Is Not Cribs

An outtake, deleted scene, or what-have-you from our AOL pilot project starring former "Overheard in New York" editor Michael Malice.

Green carpets, green screens.

The Waverly Interns (...Sigh)

Commissioned by and produced for vanityfair.com, featuring noted monologist Mike Daisey, for starters. (No Graydon Carter whatsoever.)

  March 7, 2007
Good AIM/Bad AIM (Target Practice)

More so-called "original content": a space-age instructional how-to on the proper protocol for instant messaging communication. Because we all wish we could be as skillful with using original film stock and found footage as noted director Roman Coppola!

  March 6, 2007
Original video content! We're just like everyone else! The Office: A Documentary Film by Ken Burns

Jazz? Baseball? The Civil War? Borrrrrring.

Documentarian Ken Burns examines the relationship plight that has torn our nation asunder: Karen vs. Pam, from NBC's The Office. (Part of our pilot project for AOL.)

  June 26, 2006
  June 12, 2006
Does That Also Go for Zarqawi?

"They are smart, they are creative, they are committed... They have no regard for life, neither ours nor their own. I believe this was not an act of desperation, but an act of asymmetrical warfare waged against us."
- Rear Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., commander of the detention camp at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. (Quoted by James Risen and Tim Golden, 3 Prisoners Commit Suicide at Guantánamo, The New York Times, June 11, 2006.)

Yes, But Bizarro Superman is as Queer as a Three-Dollar Bill

Opposite Gay: The rumors persist despite his lady friend and child.

"We were all scratching our heads... He's not a gay character." - Paul Levitz, president and publisher, DC Comics. (Quoted by Reuters, June 9, 2006)

Fine. Superman is not gay. He's just freakin' whipped.

Do They Have a Friends and Family Plan?


  June 8, 2006
Exclusive, Blah, Blah, Blah, &c.


  June 7, 2006
There But for the Grace of God Go I


Posted at 3:40 PM in a Desperate, Oblique, Picayune fashion.
  June 6, 2006
What Day is It?


  June 1, 2006
To Script a Predator

Who doesn't love Dateline NBC's To Catch a Predator series? What's not to love about a show that punks potential internet predators, confronts them with their own pathetic come-ons, and shows them being arrested on camera? Every episode plays like a police procedural mixed with those old commercials where someone's regular coffee has been replaced by Folger's Crystals: but instead of delicious coffee, the mark thinks he's about to enjoy some steamy underage action and finds himself sipping a piping hot cup of justice—Perverted Justice!

Alessandra Stanley of The New York Times called To Catch a Predator "seedy and fascinatingly repellant" and, to date, it's resulted in 98 alleged sexual predators being prosecuted, according to Chris Hansen, the show's Mike Wallace-meets-Allen Funt host.

But there's one thing that doesn't work about the show: The totally lame self-justifications and explanations provided by the perps when confronted (sometimes over a plate of homemade cookies) by Hansen. When these doughy cats get caught with their paws in the henhouse, they invariably try to bullshit their way out of it by saying they were there to "help" the girl, to "talk to her about the dangers of the internet," or just to watch TV and keep her company. (At this point, Hansen asks the guy if that's truly the case, why did he send her a photo of his penis? The man is good.)

So, while we definitely don't advocate meeting underage kids on the internet and arranging dates with them, should you do so and find yourself facing off against Chris Hansen and his Dateline crew, we suggest you use one of the following lines. No one will blame you if your mind goes blank when confronted with the fact that you just drove 4 hours to meet a child you've seduced online and you're now on television for all the world—especially your dear, dear mother—to see, but if you can remember just one, you'll make a big difference to the To Catch a Predator viewing audience at home. We thank you in advance.

- Hey, man, she's not twelve. She said she was born on a leap year.

- I got that Andy Milinokis disease, but in reverse. I look forty, but I'm actually eight.

- Yeah, I said I was into kids—that's a baby goat. You need a dictionary, dude?

- Kids grow up so fast these days. I assumed she'd be of age by the time I got here.

- Ever since the sixties, the rise of feminism, and the emergence of the gay rights movement, morality has become slippery. Liberalism and its emphasis on moral relativism is fraying the delicate fabric of this nation. I heard Bill Bennett saying that just the other day on his radio show.

- Right, but when Ruth Gordon does it, it's the premise for a beloved Hal Ashby film.

- Why would I want to come here and have sex with an anonymous 13-year-old when I have a lovely 46-year-old wife at home who still occasionally goes to the Y for a waterobics and who appreciates how hard I work to provide for her and support our children who honor me and never whine about toys and a puppy making me want to drive the goddamn mini-van into oncoming traffic and kill us all.

- What can I say? She typed on a college level.

- Dateline? Aren't you the ones who faked the side-impact GM pickup explosion footage? By the way, how old's Ann Curry? She got a screenname? Aw, forget I asked...

All My Friends
A One-Act Play


"I've got all my friends: Will [Smith], Kanye [West]..." – Tom Cruise sharing the contents of his iPod with US Weekly, June 12, 2006.

Tom Cruise: Ye dog!

Kanye West: Who dis?

Cruise: It's Cruise Control, baby!

West: T.C.? Shiiiiiit. What up, dawg? I didn't recognize your number on my caller ID.

Cruise: Of course you didn't, K. I have all my calls encrypted and re-directed through seven satellites positioned over each continent. You can never be too safe, man. Especially with a new baby.

West: Word. Word. How is little Suri?

Cruise: Who? Oh, right. She's awesome, Kanye! Awesome! Fatherhood is so amazing, man! The pictures of her are so cute. Hey, did you see Mission broke some records at the box office?

West: Congratulations.

Cruise: Thanks. We're all really proud. J.J. did a great job. So what if it's not Da Vinci numbers. You know what? Every movie can't be War of the Worlds. Who wants it to be, you know?

West: What's that crying, man? Is that Suri?

Cruise: Naw, dog. It's Katherine. She's been a little emotional since the baby.

West: Give her my best, man.

Cruise: Thanks. Thanks, Ye. So, you must be asking yourself, Why's Cruise Control calling me?, right, dog?

West: Mmmm.

Cruise: I wanted to see if you got the literature I sent you.

West: Yeah. Yeah, I got it.

Cruise: And?

West: And I'll read it. I'm in the studio this week, but I'll read it, man.

Cruise: I really think the Technology can take you to the Next Level, Ye. Next level!

West: I hear ya, Tom. But, you know, I'm all about the church, man. My big hit was "Jesus Walks," remember?

Cruise: Remember? I love that song, Ye! I especially like how un-glib it is.

West: T., that crying's getting awfully loud, man. Is Katie alright?

Cruise: Katherine.

West: Is Katherine alright?

Cruise: The thing is, Kanye: The Technology in no way conflicts with Christianity. Nic was a Catholic and she followed Hubbard's teachings. And she got an Oscar for The Hours. See, that's what I'm talking about when I say 'Next Level,' Ye.

West: Yeah. I'll read the stuff you sent, Tom.

Cruise: Atta boy, Ye! And I'm here to explain anything. If you need someone to meet up with you and talk about this stuff wherever you are, there's usually a really smart person in every major city. Or within flying distance. I think of you as a good friend, Ye, and I want you to get to the Next Level, man. I'm talking the Isaac Hayes Level, bro. Black Moses!

West: Thanks, Tom. I appreciate your help. Listen, man. I gotta run. Also, it sounds like Katie's really losing it over there. You might wanna go talk to her.

Cruise: You mean Katherine. And, oh, that's not her. I actually left the house a few minutes ago. I'm on the way to the Center in the Escalade. I'm watching some possible extras for the Mission III DVD. God, J.J. did such a good job, man.

West: A'ight, T.C. Holla at ya' boy.

Cruise: What? Suri's a girl, dog.

West: Yeah. I know. It's just an expression, man. It's like 'Aloha.' You say it when you say goodbye or hello or what's up. Well, listen, I gotta bounce. Later, Tom.

West hangs up.


Cruise dials another number.

Cruise: Big Willie Smith! Holla at ya' boy, dog!

Will Smith: Yo, who dis?

Posted at 10:48 AM in a Desperate, Speculative fashion.
A New Era Begins


Posted at 8:33 AM in a Desperate, Frankly Pretty Lazy fashion.
  May 28, 2006
Animal Superstars: Where Are They Now?

"Like other actors in the industry, animals have open calls and closed auditions, hair and makeup experts, special diets, red carpet appearances and retirement to a ranch. There are stars, unknowns, hopefuls and has-beens. There is hard work, and there is reward: chicken bits, in Lassie's case." –This Star Works for Chicken Bits, by William L. Hamilton, The New York Times, May 28, 2006.

D.C., from That Darn Cat, 1965: Dead.

Dog, from A Dog's Life, 1918: Dead.

Beethoven, from Beethoven, 1992: Dead.

Elephant, from The Party, 1968: Dead.

Bart the Bear, from The Edge, 1997: Dead.

Gil, from What About Bob?, 1991: Dead.

Willy, from Free Willy, 1993: Dead.

Sheldon (aka, Crow #243), from The Birds, 1963: Dead.

Rin Tin Tin, from The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, 1954-1959: Dead.

Brandon, from Punky Brewster, 1984-1988: Dead.

Monkey, from Raiders of the Lost Ark, 1981: Dead.

Old Yeller, from Old Yeller, 1957: Dead.

Jinx, from Meet the Parents, 2000; Dead.

Mike the Dog, from Down and Out in Beverly Hills, 1986: Dead.

Animal, from The Muppet Movie, 1979: Dead.

Posted at 2:34 PM in a Desperate, Wantonly Cruel fashion.
  May 8, 2006
L:c:II: We're on Cruise Control (Get it? Get it? Get it?)*

Entertainment Weekly, May 12, 2006.

Page Six, May 8, 2006.

* We hate ourselves.

Posted at 12:50 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  May 5, 2006
Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blank Man



Posted at 5:19 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  April 19, 2006
From Our Home Office in Hacksville, Long Island: Top Ten Daily Show with Jon Stewart On-Air Graphics About the Resignation of Scott McClellan


10. Scott'ched
9. McClellan/Departney
8. Don't Look Flack
7. Too Meek's Notice
6. Mild and Out
5. Something, Something, Jewish Joke Here TK
4. Spun Out
3. F'd Scott
2. Scott Bye-O!
1. Best Week Ever

Carnac Says: "You will do a segment about Hu Jintao's dinner with Bill Gates using the headline Guess Hu's Coming to Dinner. Myaaaaw... May your jokes be ghosted by Andy Borowitz!"

Posted at 1:01 PM in a Desperate fashion.
Old Issue


Posted at 12:00 PM in a Desperate, Old School fashion.
  April 11, 2006
We Hear... Bill Clinton Can't Resist a Camera










We’ve received these pictures before and sort of ignored them. But they showed up today, and have newfound relevantacity. If the emailer from a right wing-aligned media organization close to the story is to be believed—and frankly, there’s no particular reason to believe it, but why not?—that’s Clinton, with his arm around pretty much everyone he meets. Insert your own politically-motivated, disgraced journalist-coddling jokes here.

Posted at 2:57 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  April 6, 2006
Happy Huh? Day

It's Thursday? What happened? I thought it was Wednesday.

Posted at 5:00 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  April 4, 2006
Sesame Seeds: Because Lifestyle Begins At Conception

From Sesame Workshop and Experts from Less Than Zero: Sesame Seeds, a fun, new way to give your fetus the ultimate head start.

Related: Sesame Street Videos Spark Controversy, by David Crary, Associated Press, April 4, 2006.

Posted at 9:22 AM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 29, 2006
The One Question Stephen Colbert Forgot To Ask Michael "Brownie" Brown Last Night


Well, it must've just slipped his mind while they bantered about margaritas.

Posted at 12:54 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 28, 2006

They Fuck You Up, Your Mum and Dad: The casts of The Celebration and Arrested Development.

Daily Variety is reporting that Mitch Hurwitz, creator of FOX's beloved—but chronically ratings bereft—sitcom Arrested Development, will not oversee the Bluth family's move to Showtime's gated premium cable community.

Fans of the series will no doubt be saddened by this news, but Bluth lovers should celebrate. Specifically, they should have a Celebration—Thomas Vinterberg's Dogme # 1: The Celebration.

Arrested Development The Celebration
Stately, isolated location: Model HomeStately, isolated location: Hotel
Imposing yet flawed patriarch: George Bluth (Jeffrey Tambor)Imposing yet flawed patriarch: Helge Klingenfeldt-Hansen (Henning Moritzen)
Tightly-wound, well-preserved mother: Lucille Bluth (Jessica Walter)Tightly-wound, well-preserved mother: Mother (Birthe Neumann)
Male/female fraternal twins: Michael (Jason Bateman) and his sister Lindsay (Portia de Rossi)Male/female fraternal twins: Christian (Ulrich Thomsen) and his late sister Linda
Blustery, dim-witted brother: GOB (Will Arnett) Blustery, dim-witted brother: Michael (Thomas Bo Larsen)
Ditzy younger sibling with an "inappropriate" lover: Buster (Tony Hale) and Lucille Austero (Liza Minelli)Ditzy younger sibling with an "inappropriate" lover: Helene (Paprika Steen) and Gbatokai (Gbatokai Dakinah)
Deep Dark Secret: BrokeDeep Dark Secret: Too dark to reveal
Funny ha-haFunny awkward

Posted at 9:42 AM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 23, 2006
Git 'Er Dumb
Or, Everything I Knows About World Cuisine, I Guesseded From Watching the Trailer for Larry the Cable Guy: Food Inspector

Un-Ironic Sheik: Larry the Cable Guy and Joe Pantoliano (who really should know better).

Indian Food: What, no beef? What'cha'll think? Cows is sacred cows? And dang, this stuff is hot!

Japanese Food: Raw fish? You gots to be kiddin' me, hoss! Maybe if you battered and deep fry that there sashimi I'd eat it. The only fisherman I trust is the Gorton's Fisherman! And that wasabi? Dang, that stuff is hot!

Ethiopian Food: Anybody ever teach ya'll about forks and knives? Maybe if ya'll learned to eat respectabably you might'n't be so dang hungry all the time!

Chinese Food: Spare ribs'r good, boy! But I ain't gonna touch that cum of som yung guy! Dang! I'm hungry again fifteen minutes later, hoss!

Thai Food: If I wanted me some peanuts, I woulda gone to the ballpark, hoss! And dang, this stuff is hot!

Italian Food: Y'all got some catsup for my noodles? And dang, that's a spicy-a meat-a-ball!

Mexican Food: Man, this gives me the toots, boy! And why's that tortilla so flat? So ya'll can slip it under the border when you come here to steal our jobs? And dang, that salsa's hot!

Afghan Food: No way, hoss! Ain't gonna touch it! These colors—and my bowels—don't run!

British Food: This stuff's awful! Dang! How come no one ever mentions how awful this stuff is, hoss?

Pakistani Food: There ain't no difference from that In'jun food, right? And, dang, this stuff is hot!

Korean Food: These kimchis ain't no pickles I've ever seen! And ya'll left 'em in a jar where?

Soul Food: The historical legacy of slavery weighs heavily upon us all. Respect for our fellow man requires that citizens with conscience offer a hand-up—not a hand-out—to level the playing field and eradicate the still painful sting of institutional racism. And, dang, ya'll like some fatty foods, boy! I mean... sir.


Posted at 3:30 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 22, 2006
Introducing Snarly & Me, From The Publishers of The Bestselling Reality-Based Account of the Iraq War, A Million Little Pieces

Not All Dogs Go to Heaven: Snarly & Me, hitting bookshelves in about 8 years.

Earlier: The George W. Bush Book Club (All Hack Edition).

Posted at 2:09 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 21, 2006
Guinness Book of World Records 1982 Special Edition: Where Are They Now?

Benny and Billy McGuire

Record: Heaviest Twins, weighing 1,500 lbs combined
Whereabouts: Dead. Obviously.

Don Cook

Record: Wearing a 21,000 bee beard
Whereabouts: Retired after severe allergy attack caused anaphylactic shock. (Though not from a bee sting—from a peanut.)

  Karna Ram Bheal

Record: Longest Moustache, 8’ 6”
Whereabouts: Got out of the longest moustache business because it was getting way too commercial. “Back in the day, we just had 7’ moustaches for the sheer pleasure of it, man. And for her sheer pleasure.”

Sorin Monteanu

Record: Juggling 7 clubs at once
Whereabouts: Had a long hard look at himself and decided juggling was really uncool.

Shridar Chilal

Record: Longest Nails, length totally 108.5” long
Whereabouts: Met a nice girl at a fair in 1985 and decided it was time to cut his nails.

  Theraphosa blondi

Record: Largest Known Spider
Whereabouts: Crushed by Largest Known Copy of Newsweek

   Ned Weeks

Record: Largest Peanut (3.5”)
Whereabouts: Acquitted of attempted manslaughter for feeding Don “Bee Guy” Cook a really big peanut.

 Dixie Cup

Record: Largest Paper Cup, 6’ tall, holds 569 gallons
Whereabouts: Widely available at all 7-11 outlets and Loews-AMC movie theaters

 Linda Kurth

Record: Eating 23 2-oz. Hotdogs in 3 minutes 10 seconds
Whereabouts: Unknown. If you know Linda—or if you are Linda—please contact the authors, care of this website. Pleeease.

Posted at 3:50 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 15, 2006
LC Toolbox #2: The Blogger's Awesome Person's Guide to Impressing Your Friends and Minimizing Your Acquaintances


Wow, look at that! Look, look, right there, up above! Why, it's me, Jean-Paul Tremblay, standing with genuine, honest-to-god famous person David Cross, and photographed for all the world to see.

That's some fucking posterity, right? The sort of posterity that can only come through posting this photo on Friendster, Flickr, and my personal space on MySpace. We awesome types put that shit up in all those media, because someone who consorts with celebrities is clearly stellar enough to show their lesser friends just what it is that makes this particular fellow here (me!) so goddamned great. In this case, it's all about proximity...to the star! (Let's not mention proximity to that obvious hanger-on next to him: That loser wishes he were as close to The Crossroad [as friends call him] as I am.)

This here's a degree of familiarity that shows one isn't just a conventional starfucker, but a straight-shooting celeb-consorter. A friend. A brother-in-famous-arms. And it's important to not distract your acquaintances or peers or friends with cluttersome non-celebrities.

That's where a handy knowledge of Adobe Photoshop and the specifics of image-doctoring come in. (I use Adobe Creative Suite 2 because it's piracy-proof. Take that, you license-stealing BitTorrent users!)

(Continued after the jump.)

chappelle_cross_cut1.jpg OK, good thing we got that jump out of the way, and you made it this far. And now for the lesson.

First, get to know the cropping tool. Most image-editing applications have this sort of apparatus, and if you want to get ahead in the realm of showing off your star-partying chops, you'll need to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of removing non-celebrities from your photos.

In this case, I removed the annoying black fellow who kept popping into conversations around the room saying, "I'm Rick Jameson, bitch!" (I assumed it was a pretentious Frederick Jameson reference; social climbers can be so pretentious.) I don't know his name, but get a good look at him above, because that's the last you'll see of that guy in the course of this particular lesson plan.

chappelle_cross_cut2.jpg Next, make sure you're well-versed in the various brushes available to you. You'll need them to remove additional hangers-on, such as the curly-haired idiot in the beret who somehow managed to squeeze the back of his head into my moment of glory with The Crossroad. It's like he heard the photographer asking, "Hey, David, smile! Let's get this on film!" and knew that this was his moment to finagle his ugly neck and mini-mullet into the shot.

Well, look over here on the left. By matching the brush's paint color with that of the dark, shady background behind David, and delicately skirting the top of Cross' shoulder, I've certainly showed the mysterious El Beret Assholia a thing or two about the perils of working your way into the limelight. And this particular fucker's been removed — for posterity.

chappelle_cross_cut3.jpg So, here we are. Me and The Crossroad. As you can see, I also made usage of the lasso tool and various distortion filters to better convey my newfound cheery demeanor. It's like it's just me and David, and he's just gotten his drink from the server in the jean jacket next to him, and he's turning back to face me, but I've just said something really fucking funny, and he's laughing at it, he's clutching his drink, he's eagerly waiting for me to deliver another great one-liner...

We're buddies, Dave and I. No, you know what? We're more than that. We're friendsters. Which is where you can find us trading jokes and LOLing all day long, losers.

Because that's one thing I'm not: a loser.

Posted at 3:48 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 14, 2006
or, Meet the New Guys

As a virtuecrat-turned-Bobo-turned-security dad-turned-values voter, I was excited to read about Rod Dreher's minimalist-titled new book, Crunchy-Cons: How Birkenstocked Burkeans, gun-loving organic gardeners, evangelical free-range farmers, hip homeschooling mamas, right-wing nature lovers, and their diverse tribe of countercultural conservatives plan to save America (or at least the Republican Party)... When the Pawn Hits the Conflicts He Thinks Like a King What He Knows Throws the Blows When He Goes to the Fight And He'll Win the Whole Thing 'Fore He Enters the Ring There's No Body To Batter When Your Mind is Your Might So When You Go Solo, You Hold Your Own Hand And Remember That Depth is the Greatest of Heights And If You Know Where You Stand, Then You Know Where to Land And If You Fall It Won't Matter, Cuz You'll Know That You're Right... For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf in this week's New York Times Book Review.

Kirkpatrick helpfully explains the newest creatures to join the great chain of being along with those already well documented Food Court Druids, Cherehonkees, and Lieberals (not to mention those famous Patio- and Organization men) as a follows:

Crunchy cons disapprove of abortion rights, same-sex marriage, illegal immigrants, public schools, secular liberals and mothers who work outside the home. But they don't like Wal-Mart, McMansions, suburbs, pollution, agribusiness or processed foods, either.
Still confused? Here's a breakdown that will help you to figure out which you are: "crunchy" or "con." Or both!

Crunchy Con
Trout Fishing in AmericaQuail hunting at the Armstrong Ranch
Carolyn "Mountain Girl" AdamsMidge "Rummy's a Babe Magnet" Decter
Woodstock Nostalgia: "If you remember it, you weren't there, man."Kent State Nostalgia: "If you remember it, we weren't shooting straight, hippie."
"The Diggers""The Plumbers"
"If It's Yellow, Let It Mellow; If It's Brown, Flush It Down""These Colors Don't Run, So Let's Roll!"
Knowing the perfect place to get a deal on Tom's of Maine soap for your wifeKnowing the perfect place to hide your Tom of Finland stuff from your wife

Posted at 12:38 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 13, 2006
OMG! Check out our new #$!& Criterion Collection release on DVD!!!!!

lc_viralvideo_criterion_c2.jpgFinally, the viral video that changed the world on Friday is available on a special edition two-disc Criterion Collection DVD! Disc One of this collectors edition DVD features a remastered director's cut with commentary, deleted scenes, production stills, storyboards, and making-of featurette. The OMG! Check This #$!& Out!!!!! experience continues on Disc Two with the HBO documentary The OMG! Check This #$!& Out!!!!! Kid: Where Is He Now?, as well as the earth-shattering defense attorney's evidence that exonerated the director in the trial that shocked the world.

Check out some of this newly-released content below, including rare outtakes and a sample of the extended Director's Cut, complete with a commentary track by the film's star and producer.

viral video an lc digital short

viral video an lc digital short

Winner: Jury Prize, 2006 Stan Dance Film Festival (Special citation by Stan himself)

"Painterly. And deliciously obscure." - Manny Farber

"This ghostly film will haunt you like a specter. Boo!" - James Agee

"Take it from me, a real film critic: this film is real and really good. For real!" - David Manning

"You guys made me look like a fat monster!" - Jordan

About the Transfer

OMG! Check this #$!& out!!!!! is presented in its original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.35:1. This anamorphic digital transfer was created from the 35mm interpositive and was supervised by the director. The soundtrack was re-mastered from the original magnetic 6-track masters. The new 5.1 DTS and Dolby Digital soundtracks were remastered at 24-bit; audio restoration tools were used to reduce clicks, pops, hiss, and crackle.

Buy your own copy now!

Posted at 2:27 PM in a Desperate, Original Video fashion.
Thinking Outside of the Pen

Click to expand.

"Let's make it something that we never would have dreamed about." - Marty Markowitz, Brooklyn borough president.

"Food would be a very important component there... Coffee would be critical. From there, you might go to something jeans-oriented, or footwear." - Howard Davidowitz, chairman of Davidowitz & Associates, a retail consulting and investment banking firm. (Both quoted in Brooklyn House of Detention Seen as a Jail With Retail, by Paul von Zielbauer, The New York Times, March 10, 2006)

"There's a tremendous amount of potential to sell what I call the nifty-gifties... You have a captive audience, even with the visitors... Think of it as more of an upscale airport gift shop." - Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for the NPD Group [emphasis added] (Quoted in Prisoners Up Above, 'Nifty-Gifties' Down Below, by Paul von Zielbauer, The New York Times, March 12, 2006)

"It's been the devout wish of the neighborhood to get this thing closed and gone, because it does not do a thing for the neighborhood."- Heloise Gruneberg, president of Brooklyn Vision. (Quoted in Jailhouse Blues? On the Contrary, by Jake Mooney, The New York Times, March 12, 2006)

With all due respect, as a former resident of Boerum Hill, I think I have a solution. There's an easy way to reopen the jail, enhance the neighborhood, and bring in new revenue.

Check out the excellent drawing I did with some friends over beers Saturday night at Boat.

Posted at 10:39 AM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 10, 2006
OMG! Check this #$!& out!!!!!

A friend passed this on to us, and we thought it was so great that we had to share it, and share it, and share it over and over again! Spread this around!!!!

viral video an lc digital short brought to you by OK soda

Send this to a friend!

Posted at 3:51 PM in a Desperate, Original Video fashion.
  March 9, 2006
The Minor Ethicist

pinhead_ethicist.jpgAm I tricking my houseplants by providing them with constant sunlight even in the winter? In nature, they wouldn’t get that much light. Should I provide them with less light part of the year? R.J., Chicago

This is an interesting conundrum, and I admire your not wanting to lie to plants. But when it comes to ethics, we as sentient beings must consider what benefits the majority without hurting the individual. As the more powerful party in the human/plant relationship, you are responsible for looking out for the plant’s well being without deception or manipulation. I say leave it in the sun, even in cold weather, but explain to it that this is an artificial arrangement and that in a state of nature, it would probably be dead. Providing winter sun isn't 'lying' per se, but it is giving your plants an unfair advantage over other plants: explaining that goes a long way towards correcting that disparity. Plus, everyone knows talking to plants helps them grow.

A colleague recently complimented me by saying “Hey, nice new jacket.” I thanked him even though the jacket isn’t new: I've had it since college. Was I in the wrong?


Ethical people strive to be as honest as possible. In this case, you lied. Sure, it was a lie of omission, but you knew that your jacket was old and yet you took the conditional compliment ("nice new jacket") without explanation. I recommend you send your colleague a note—or, since we’re in the digital era, an email—apologizing for the deception. Your jacket may be nice, but it's not new. Your colleague should know that fact. Who knows, your colleague may still like your jacket, and you just may be able to save whatever working relationship you have with him.

At the end of my ATM transactions, the machine displays a screen that says “Would you like me to print a receipt?” I often select ‘no,’ even though some small part of me does, in fact, want a receipt. Should I select ‘yes,’ even if I don’t completely want a receipt?


Everyone knows the famous F. Scott Fitzgerald quote about keeping two ideas in one's mind at the same time without going crazy. While this may come in handy in many situations, it’s impossible to convey two ideas to a machine like an ATM. I say take the receipt even if you’re not 100% sure you want it: you can always use it to throw away your gum or write down a phone number.

A few years ago, a former employer made me go in front of the United Nations and lie about a supposed enemy nation's weapons of mass destruction. At the time, I rationalized that what I was doing was part of my job. Besides, even though the country I was talking about didn't have any WMDs, most people would agree that it was a pretty bad country. But now that I've had some time to reflect on it, I feel like I made a terrible mistake. A lot of people may have gotten hurt because of my testimony (it was pretty compelling: I had props and aerial photographs), and subsequent actions have cost my company untlold billions of dollars. I want to tell the truth, but I'm still on good terms with my former boss and colleagues and I do want a good recommendation for when I'm ready to re-enter the job market. How can I clear the air and my conscience?


Anonymous, you call that question minor ethics? That's beneath even me. Flip a coin and decide what to do you for yourself.
No ethical quandary is too small for the Minor Ethicist. Send queries to minor_ethicist@lowculture.com, and include a photo if you're hot.

Posted at 12:05 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 7, 2006
It's Really, Really Easy Being Greenspan
(Or, Duuuuh, Capital)

I'm Rich, Bee-yatch!: Completely un-retouched first paperback edition cover.

According to today's EXCLUSIVE report by Keith J. Kelly in The New York Post, Alan Greenspan has just sold his memoir to Penguin, Inc. for between $8.5-$9 million.

You don't have to be a former Fed Chairman to know that's a lot of money! Why, you could pay off your credit card debt, your student loan, your refinanced mortgage, and still have some cash left over to buy a Powerball ticket. With those winnings, you might be able to finally vest your Pets.com stock options and make some real dough! Party like it's 1999, Greenie!

But what is Penguin getting for its money? Good question. A quick look at Greenspan's contributions to Ayn Rand's 1967 essay collection, Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal reveals the brilliant insights that made Greenspan indispensable to four administrations. Here's one from page 96:
Clearly worth every penny.

Posted at 12:16 PM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 6, 2006
LCToolbox: The Bluffer's Blogger's Guide to Breaking Into Magazines

The Metamorphosis: Going from blogger to magazine writer is easier than you think.

After winning the Nobel Prize and marrying Padma Lakshmi (or her male equivalent), the natural goal for any writer—or a blogger—should be writing for magazines. Look around any subway car or hair salon and you'll see that magazines are the number one information and time-killing medium. Ever since the tragic events of 9/11, a growing number of Americans have turned to magazines to explain their world to them and comfort them in uncertain times. Plus, magazines are great when it rains: try keeping your head dry with a newspaper and tell me what you'd rather write for, Men's Journal or The New York Review of Books. Plus, if you're getting gussied up for a Bar Mitzvah or court date, you won't get free cologne or perfume from a book. Don't even try it.

But for bloggers, breaking into magazines might feel a lot like alchemy. Turning lead into gold seems really, really hard, but, man, is it ever lucrative if you can pull it off. Here are some tips for all you aspiring magazine writers out there. You can thank us later.

1. Know the Lingo If you're gonna break into the fast-paced world of magazines, you better sound like you belong. Knowing a few keywords will help you sound like an expert. Here are some helpful terms to commit to memory:

· The Book: Literally, the magazine. This one's confusing because it doesn't refer to a book. Think of it as an example of aspirational metonymy: magazine writers and editors wish they were writing books, so they call their publications books. (You, on the other hand, wish you were writing for magazines, so start referring to your blog as a magazine.)

· Front of the Book: Just what it sounds like: the opening section. Nine out ten times, this is where your work will appear. Depending on the magazine, your front of the book piece (remember, this is the front of a magazine, not a book: see "The Book," above) will run roughly 95 to 100 words, which might or might not include a caption.

· The Mix: Think of this like your iPod playlist—a seemingly random assemblage of content you define yourself with based on trends, marketing, PR, and the recommendations of your friends who are up on trends, marketing, and PR.

· The Feature Well: The deep, dark hole in the middle of the magazine where everything cool and vital is found. Chances are you won't be asked to write for the Feature Well, but you should know this term anyway. (Usage Example: "Maybe my front of the book story on designer sweatbands can be expanded into the feature well?")

· Nut Graph: The paragraph containing your piece's most salient points. Think of this as the pearl inside the muculent guts of your article. The best place to put your "nut graph" is towards the end of the piece where it can be like a little reward for readers who've read all the way to the end.

· Kill Fee: This is what you get paid when your editor decides not to run your story. Typically 20-25% of the agreed-upon fee, the kill fee is like a no harm/no foul. With it in hand, you can feel the rush of having written for a magazine (good job!) without having to risk anyone ever reading the piece. Plus, you can try to resell the piece to another publication or—natch—use it on your blog. (Side note: When re-pitching a killed piece, you should definitely mention that it was killed by another magazine, particularly if the new publication is a direct competitor to the magazine that killed your piece: Printing your front of the book—maybe feature well—article on designer sweatbands will be sweet, sweet revenge for the editor who runs it.)

2. Understanding the Masthead If you're gonna work—or freelance—in magazines, you better know who you're dealing with. This can be a challenge since magazine job titles are as convoluted and complex as those you might encounter in the House of Lords. Clip and save this skeleton key:

· Editor-in-Chief: This person is in charge. And she's too busy to talk with you. In fact, she's probably in Milan right now. And she doesn't check her email. Her assistant prints out her email for her and she always leaves the printouts in the back of her Town Car. Also, she hasn't read the magazine in years. Leave the editor-in-chief alone. (But, when talking about your work with friends, always refer to her by first name: see "Bragging Rights," below.)

· Managing Editor: This person is a frazzled maniac. He will not return your calls because he's really, really busy. Besides, he's busy handling the stuff you don't care about: scheduling, budget, liaising with the art department, consoling emotionally distraught staffers. Plus, he's super busy.

· Features Editor: This person is too high up to talk to you, so don't bother pitching him. If you do pitch him, he'll probably reply via Blackberry while the publicist he's lunching with goes to the bathroom for the fourth time that hour. He might actually like your idea, but more often than not, he will forget you pitched it and won't assign it.

· Editor-at-Large: This person is never in the office and, more likely than not, is drunk. Often he's located in some exotic locale—or at home, sleeping in—yet he's still working at the magazine because he saved the editor's life a few years ago. Don't ever pitch him.

· Senior Editor: This person will still take your calls and she might even assign you a story if she likes your idea. While she's got the ear of her superiors, the pieces she brings in might still get killed. But she's cool, you know, so she'll get the managing editor to cut you a full kill fee. (See: "Kill Fee," above.)

· Associate Editor: This person is your new best friend. She's not an assistant anymore, so she can actually get stories into "the mix," usually in "the front of the book." (More likely than not, she'll be the one using these terms.) Best of all, she can usually take you out to lunch and expense it. (Like we said: your new best friend.) Your success depends on her success, so keep your fingers crossed that she gets promoted, like, soon and doesn't forget about you. (Side note: invite her to your birthday party, set her up with a friend.)

· Reporter (aka, fact-checker): This person will hate your guts. She knows that she's a better writer than you are, but she's stuck in a windowless room verifying the spelling of Audrey Tautou's name without relying on the IMDB. Treat this person with utter disdain—don't return her increasingly frantic calls, refuse to turn over your notes or tapes, call her by the wrong name (usually whatever name is on the shared email account she'll be writing to you from)—and she'll know you're legit.

· Assistant Editor: This person can be you—if you play your cards right!

3. The Competitive Edge There are a lot of writers (not to mention bloggers) out there and only so many openings in "the mix." Success in magazine writing depends on maintaining some advantage over the competition. Here's all you need to know: Never pitch a story unless you've seen it written about elsewhere. If another magazine, newspaper, or blog has covered a particular subject, you know that the story's worth doing. Don't worry about editors passing on stories that have already run: they're too busy putting out a magazine to actually read magazines. Besides, when they're not working 12 hour days, they're writing their books. (See: "The Book," above.)

4. Protecting Your Ideas One of the risks of pitching stories to magazines is having your ideas stolen—even if the idea is one you got from another article. (See: "The Competitive Edge," above.) You cannot copyright an idea, but you have some recourse if an idea you've pitched has been stolen: Complaining. Let's say you pitch a story on a famous Hollywood actor in an upcoming major studio release and you see another publication has also written about her—and the writer of that piece interviewed the star, to boot—you have to use your blog to complain about the theft. Print all your emails to the editor you pitched and any responses you might've received. Not only will this get the word out that the editor acted unethically, it will let other editors know that you mean business and won't be pushed around. Now when you pitch them and they Google you, they'll see that you're a professional.

5. Numbers Numbers are an important part of making your article seem important. But you didn't get into magazine journalism to mess with numbers. You're a writer—or a blogger—not a NASA scientist. You can achieve the "numbers effect" without actually using numbers by employing terms like "a growing number," "several," "increasingly," "many," "untracked numbers," or "a lot." As long as it seems like some research backs up your findings, you're golden—increasingly golden.

6. 9/11 You should probably mention this in every story you write. It contextualizes almost anything. (Example: "Ever since 9/11, increasing numbers of consumers have sought sweatbands...") Plus, 9/11 lends a soupçon of gravitas to any article you may be writing.

7. Lingua Franca Throwing foreign-ish terms like 'soupçon' and 'gravitas' into your piece will not only make you sound smarter, it will help educate your readers who will feel superior to their friends after looking up your fancy terms and sprinkling them into their conversations.

8. Sources While you're more than capable of articulating the point of your own article, you'll need sources to flesh it out and bring it some real world frisson. (See, "Lingua Franca," above.) Some good sources include: friends, former lovers, your brother or sister, your college roommate, and yourself. If you don't want to embarrass your source, just employ an asterisk and state that, "Names and identifying details have been changed." No one will ever know who said what. (See: "Reporter," above.)

9. Ethics This mostly refers to freebies. You want them, be they free books (referred to as "review copies"), DVDs, clothing, continental breakfasts, or housewares. Some editors frown upon writers taking too many freebies because they might function as bribes. But that usually applies to staff members. You're a freelance writer—or blogger—so your only boss is yourself. Since you're the boss, don't you feel like giving your "employee" a nice bonus? Maybe a new set of sheets? Or some freeze-dried Omaha steaks. Whatever. Enjoy it. You've earned it.

10. Contributor's Photo This is why you do it: To have your image immortalized in the pantheon of professional journalists. (You also do it so that a talent booker from VH1 will call you to appear on Revenge of the Awesomely Sweet Sitcom Bods II, but that won't happen without an awesomely sweet contributor's photo.) This one photo may determine whether or not you'll ever get a book deal or sell a script, so make this photo a good one. You better look your best. Use special lighting. Hold a baby. (Don't have a baby? Borrow one. An ethnic one.) Hair. Makeup. Designer clothes. Figure out your most flattering angle and strike a pose. (Side note: once you've figured out your most flattering angle, you're gonna have to always appear that way all the time. If you go with the hand to ear thing, you better feel comfortable doing that constantly. Ditto, the surprised, open mouth laugh thing.) Your contributor's photo will prove that not only have you made it, you looked good doing it.

10. Bragging Rights Another reason you do it. You have bragging rights for as long as the magazine is on the newsstand. This is why writing for a monthly is better than writing for a weekly. Writing for a daily is a huge mistake. The best magazines to write for are quarterlies. Just imagine how proud of yourself you'll be when you see the quarterly with your article in it on the newsstand month after month after month. This is where your blog comes in handy: Use it to remind people of the article you wrote. Your online boast will live well after the quarterly you've written for folds.

11. Getting Paid You're on your own, sucker. (See: "Managing Editor," above.)

So, there you go. A simple guide to going from blogger to magazine writer. Now, go forth and turn that lead into gold. When we see you at the newsstand, we'll be sure to say, 'Hi.'

Posted at 10:17 AM in a Desperate fashion.
  March 1, 2006
Didja Hear the One About the Gay Cowboys?

1_gore_vidal.jpg 2_gliphs.jpgGore Vidal, Historian, Author, Homosexual: "Essentially, since the dawn of recorded human culture, there have been Brokeback Mountain jokes. Some of the earliest examples can be found in Egyptian hieroglyphics. This one dating back to roughly 4000 B.C. shows two men, possibly farmers, talking. One compliments the other on his hair and the other replies, 'What is this? Brokeback Desert?' It's a weak joke, but not as bad as many that would come later."
  The Twentieth Century
3_kearns_goodwin.jpg Doris Kearns Goodwin, Historian, Amusing Chat Show Guest: "Brokeback Mountain jokes really came into their own in the Twentieth Century. Before that time, there were Brokeback Mountain jokes, but they were often of the hack variety, usually referencing chaps or 'barebacking.' With the end of the late Victorian period and the normalization of homophobia in the United States, Brokeback Mountain jokes entered their so-called Golden Age."
  Turn of the Century
4_roosevelt.jpg Here we see President Theodore Roosevelt laughing at a Brokeback Mountain joke in 1908. Some believed that Roosevelt, the consummate outdoors-man and man's man, had particular reason to be tickled by Brokeback Mountain jokes and editorial cartoonists at the time enjoyed depicting the president making love to his Vice President Charles Fairbanks in a tent.
  WW I

5_ww1.jpgMany consider this World War I era poster dating from 1914 to be an example of veiled Brokeback Mountain humor. Historians of the First World War also cite numerous instances of Brokeback Mountain-type jokes in letters home from GIs, like this one from Private Roger Martin of Ohio:

Dear Mother, Father, Grandpapa, and Suzy
First, I will tell you I am well and doing my part for America. But I am lonely here in the trenches despite the companionship of my platoon. Through scares and some close-scrapes, we have grown into a close-knit group, though not in a Brokeback Mountain sort of way.
  The Teens
6_will_rogers.jpg Will Rogers opened his "Follies" in 1916 with the joke, "I just got back from Brokeback Mountain, and man is my asshole tired!" Audiences ate it up and Rogers' catch-phrase, "I never met a man I didn't like" became shorthand for Brokeback Mountain jokes.
  The 1920s

Here we see Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll, aka radio's Amos 'n' Andy performing their Brokeback Mountain parody, Brokeblack Mou'tain:

Amos: I's so broke, I can't buy me no mo' alchyhol to sit 'round and be 'mo shiftless, Andy!
Andy: I's know hows you can makes some money, Amos.
Amos: No thank ya! I knows what you have in mind, Andy.
Andy: You's said you's broke.
Amos: I's broke, but I ain't brokeback!
Amos: Oh, Andy. We's just a coupla drunk, shiftless negroes! Let's find us some white women and miscegenate!
  The 1930s
8_orson_welles.jpg In 1938 a young Orson Welles makes history when he performs a radio play he wrote based on Brokeback Mountain. His use of voices and sound effects is so convincing, thousands of listeners actually believe they are hearing two cowboys falling in love. Legend has it that dozens of people committed suicide fearing a wave of gay cowboyism. Three years later, Welles and his cowriter Herman Mankiewicz work a Brokeback Mountain joke into Citizen Kane but RKO insists that their reference to "stemming the rose," be changed to "rosebud."
9_hitler_mussolini.jpg Brokeback Mountain jokes weren't solely an American phenomenon. Here we see Adolf Hitler telling Benito Mussolini his best-known Brokeback Mountain joke:
Q. What's worse than two gay cowboys?
A. Two gay Jewish cowboys.
Historians believe Mussolini did not find the joke funny, but was laughing to be polite since Hitler was his ride home.
  The 1940s
  10_Bing_bob.jpgIn 1946 Bing Crosby and Bob Hope release Road to Brokeback Mountain.
  The 1950s
Here we see a cartoon from the Spring 1958 issue of The Harvard Lampoon. That issue's cover featured the headline, "Gentlemen, Let's Leave It To Beaver! (Get It? Get It? Get It?)" This cartoon's author went on to receive a pilot and a first-look deal with United Artists.
Also in 1958, Tom Lehrer records his minor hit, "I'll Be Comin' Around Brokeback Mountain When You Come."
  The 1960s
12_deputy_dawg.jpg In the 60s, several popular cartoon series made Brokeback Mountain jokes. In 1962's Brokerock Mountainrock, Fred Flintstone tells Barney Rubble, "I just can't rock quit you rock," and in 1963's Brokeback Dawg episode of Deputy Dawg (pictured), Deputy Dawg and Vincent Van Gopher go fishing together and fall in love.

July 24, 1963, a young Bill Clinton visits the White House with a delegation of the American Legion Boys Nation and meets President John F. Kennedy. Given a few seconds of face time with the president, future president Clinton shares a Brokeback Mountain joke:

Q. How many gay cowboys does it take to watch a flock of sheep, Mr. President?
A. Wanna find out? I've always admired you.
14_Lenny-bruce.jpg In 1964, Comedian Lenny Bruce is arrested for his infamous Brokeback Mountain routine at Cafe Wha? in New York:

"Everybody gets Brokeback, baby. Everybody. I don't care who you are, you get outside the city, you leave behind the wife and kids and go into those woods and... you... become... gay. Everybody, baby. L.B.J. L.B.J. gets Brokeback. It's a fact. He gets all in that rucksack, snuggles all up in there with Dean Rusk... Oooh, Dean. Ooooh, I love ya, baby. Brokeback President, baby!

He served three weeks in jail for obscenity and "baby" abuse.

15_buckley_vidal.jpg In May 1968, Gore Vidal and William F. Buckley debate Brokeback Mountain jokes at a forum sponsored by Commentary magazine. Buckley famously tells Vidal, "Sir, if it ain't Brokeback, you'd be cautioned not to fix it." Vidal responded, "What's broken, Mr. Buckley, is the system. But perhaps I'm making a Brokeback Mountain out a molehill." Later that week, Buckley sued Vidal. Vidal counter sued and the cases finally made it to the Supreme Court in 1975.
In 1969, Neil Armstrong makes the first Brokeback Mountain joke on the moon to fellow astronaut Buzz Aldrin: "Buzz, maybe we can start a little ranch up here, have a life together. Just like in Brokeback Mountain."
  The 1970s
  At a press conference for his 1970 comeback fight with Jerry Quarry, boxer Muhammad Ali taunts, "I'm gonna send that white boy back to Brokeback Mountain!" He also recited the poem:
He will go down in two, or, Ennis, I'll quit you.
16_Nixon_hope.jpg In 1972, Bob Hope shares a Road to Brokeback Mountain era joke with President Richard Nixon. Some historians believe the missing 18 1/2 minutes on Nixon's White House tapes may have been one long Brokeback Mountain joke made by Nixon Chief of Staff H.R. Haldeman.
17_Blazing_Saddles.jpg Mel Brooks releases Blazing Saddles in 1974. The film contains a record number of Brokeback Mountain jokes, including the famous scene in which Cleavon Little complains that he hates beans, just like "those Brokeback-ass crackers."
18_jack_lemmon.jpg Jack Lemmon literally phones in a Brokeback Mountain joke at a press conference for The Golden Globes in 1975. Bob Newhart later sued him for phone gag copyright infringement.
19_redd_foxx.jpg At the Dean Martin Celebrity Roast of Frank Sinatra in 1977, Redd Foxx accuses Dean and his former comedy partner Jerry Lewis of being gay cowboys: "I know what you white people do in the woods. Can't fool me! You stem the rose!" In the video of the proceedings, Lucille Ball is seen doing a spit-take.
20_carol_burnett_dick_cavet.jpg Carol Burnett appears on The Dick Cavett Show and wonders, "Can two women go Brokeback? Or would they just move in together, adopt some cats, and start an organic herb garden?"
  The 1980s
21_marlboro man.jpg

In March 1980, Marlboro unveils a series of print ads that many perceive to be a veiled Brokeback Mountain joke: "Come to where the flavor is."

In 1982, Wilson Bryan Key, author of Subliminal Seduction released Media Sexploitation, devoting an entire chapter to Marlboro's "gay cowboy ads."

22_muppet.jpg The Muppet Show airs a segment called "Furback Mountain" in 1981 featuring Fozzy Bear and Rowlf.
The January 5th, 1981 cover of Time magazine features a picture of President Ronald Reagan and wonders, "Are We All Gay Cowboys Now?"
Lawrence Fishburn appears as Cowboy Curtis on Pee-Wee's Playhouse in a 1988 episode entitled "Brokeback Pee-Wee."
25_lyle.jpg Dana Carvey debuts his character "Lyle the Effeminate Heterosexual" on Saturday Night Live in 1989 in a skit called "Effeminate Heterosexual Mountain." The skit is such a hit, every subsequent episode of the show contains a retread until Carvey leaves the show in 1993.
  The 1990s
26_letterman_carson.jpg David Letterman appears on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in 1991 and suggests the two of them go fishing after Carson retires. "That would be weird," Carson replies. "Yes! Weird!" Ed McMahon says.
27_vilanch_whoopi.jpg In 1994, social critic Francis Fukayama declares "The End of Brokeback Mountain jokes" in his book The End of Brokeback Mountain Jokes and the Last Man. That same year, Whoopi Goldberg and Bruce Vilanch confer on some cutting edge Brokeback Mountain jokes at a dress rehearsal for the 66th Annual Academy Awards.
  In its October 13, 1997 issue, The New Yorker finally publishes Annie Proulx's "Brokeback Mountain" for the first time. Centuries of gay cowboy jokes finally make sense.
28_sex_city.jpg Sex and the City debuts on HBO in 1998, featuring a groundbreaking fifteen minute pun-filled riff on Brokeback Mountain including the following gem from Samantha played by Kim Cattrall: "Sweetie, you can never be too thin or too Brokeback." Kristin Davis' character, Charlotte, replies, "You are so bad!" And they all order more $14 drinks.
29_al_gore.jpg Al Gore claims to have invented Brokeback Mountain jokes in a 1999 interview with 60 Minutes' Ed Bradley.
  Times of Crisis
31_crouch.jpg 30_wtc.jpgStanley Crouch, Author, Pugilist: "After the tragic events of September 11th, many felt that the Brokeback Mountain jokes had to end. I remember at the time Graydon Carter declared 'the end of Brokeback Mountain jokes,' and it did feel like the end of an era."
  On December 9, 2005, Focus Features releases Ang Lee's film version of Brokeback Mountain. Americans regain their ability to tell hack Brokeback Mountain jokes again. First the bloggers, then the late night chat shows, then the President, then Willy Nelson. Somehow everyone understands that if they stop making Brokeback Mountain jokes, the terrorists will win.
The New Yorker
publishes William Haefeli's Brokeback Mountain-themed cartoon in its December 26, 2005 issue.
Then, on its February 27, 2006 issue, they bravely make a Brokeback Mountain/Bush-Cheney joke on the cover.
  Someone mocks up a parody of Brokeback Mountain and Back to the Future and puts it on the internet where Brokeback Mountain jokes grow like kudzu—gay cowboy kudzu. Then someone else renders Brokeback Mountain in Lego—gay cowboy lego. Brokeback Mountain jokes enter their Silver Age.
  The Future
33_kreskin.jpg 35_jonstewart.jpgThe Amazing Kreskin, Psychic, Trivial Pursuit Answer: "No one knows what the future holds for Brokeback Mountain jokes, but with Jon Stewart hosting The 78th Annual Academy Awards on Sunday, March 5th, we can only guess. A self-effacing joke about going on secret fishing trips with Tucker Carlson? A joke about how muscular and gay the Oscar statuette looks? Not even a psychic can know. But in a sort of Manhattan Project for Brokeback Mountain jokes, a group of comedy writers and scientists are working around the clock to develop newer, better, funnier gags—including gags about the word 'gag'— in time for the Academy Awards telecast. The future of Brokeback Mountain jokes looks bright and is in no risk of bottoming out— like Jake Gyllenhaal. Get it? Get it?" Get it?
Posted at 12:13 PM in a Desperate fashion.
Exciting News From Your Favorite Blog Multi-Media Company

Hey Everybody, Jake here, Mega-Publisher Extraordinaire.

Can you feel it? Wait. Wait. That! Wait for it... Wait for it... There, that! It's our amazing low culture redesign!

You're probably asking yourself, "Self, why would one of the internet's best websites redesign? I mean, why ditch the 'shallow' content and all that other stuff? Why mess with perfection? You don't know? Are you even listening to me, Self? Why do you hate me? Why won't you just look me in the eye and say my name? What's my name, Self? Will! Will, I am, of the Black Eyed Peas."

Well, while you talk stuff out with yourself, I'll explain. We're redesigning low culture for the best reason possible: to make money! Lots of fucking money! Boo-ya! We're not ones to count our chickens before they're grilled on little wood sticks and served with dipping sauce, but since we're all friends here, we'll tell you all about it.

· First up: our book deal. We recently received a "nice" contract from one of America's leading publishing houses (trust me, you've heard of it) to pen low Blows: The low culture Guide to Hack Humor, Knee-Jerk Politics, and Jokes About Celebrities Who Get Fat. It's due out in November and don't worry, you'll still get awesome content at low culture since we farmed out the book writing to a college kid we know.

· Next: low culture TV! Okay, not quite TV per se, but broadband on the website of a major entertainment company. We're platform agnostic so to us, broadband is just as good as TV. Or phones. Or God...or whatever. Like I said, we're agnostic.

· Finally: Novelty Record. We're gonna live out a lifelong dream of creating a novelty record of skits, songs, and awkward silences. And because we're old school, we're pressing it on vinyl. If you're interested in selling low culture's Songs For Young People in the Key of Francis Scott Key, contact Rick at our distro (or through Forced Exposure).

So, there you go, the next phase of low culture. This one column right here...do you feel it? You bet you do.

Posted at 11:00 AM in a Desperate fashion.
  February 22, 2006
Rumors of Our Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated, as Have the Criticisms of Stupid Headlines Like This

Internal Office Memorandum
TO: Matthew Haber
FROM: Jean-Paul B. Tremblay
CC: Guy Vincent Cimbalo VIII
DATE: Timeless, by Goldie
OK, gentlemen, you were right. That's really the only explanation I can surmise for this shot across the bow.

educating_ecuador.jpgGoing off to help teach impoverished and undereducated children in the wilds of Ecuador this winter –– whilst concurrently having left behind that online "Reader Feedback" forum –– turned out to be a dreadfully bad idea. Heinous, even. (Though my lack of internet connectivity proved to be beneficial in polishing my storytelling chops; it's quite striking how my ignorance of all things Denise Richards/Charlie Sheen and Randy "Duke" Cunningham/Mitchell Wade allowed my newfound gift for narrative confabulation to shine at those Quito-based USAID cocktail parties thrown in junction with Rafael and Lucio...I had people actually believing that I was an expert on everything from Supreme Court litmus tests to the canonical ambient compositions of Brian Eno and Harold Budd. Astounding!)

So, like I was saying, that "Reader Feedback" thing for low culture...a fucking bad, bad, bad idea.

denise_richards_randy_cunn.jpgThe indignant, self-righteous anger that poured forth from said forum! As though people were entitled to free content on the web! I've always felt that unless you're an impoverished Ecuadorian, you're not entitled to any such handouts. How very wrong I have since been proven.

And now, not only have we disappointed myriad readers, we seem to have incited some form of extremely aggressive hostility. I am humbled and chastened.

Apparently, these "blog" things are hot shit, and we missed the boat on this one, lads. Or I personally dropped the ball. Or darted home without tagging up at third base. Or mixed sporting metaphors. Fuck if I know; my athletic knowledge is limited to the realm of sexual acrobatics, and that's about it. (My mother once told me a man would fuck a snake if you held its head. I have since learned this is quite true.)

Anyways, let's a get a cease-and-desist out on these guys...there's got to be some form of copyright law or anti-parodic justification we can rely on, right? Do either of you know Lawrence Lessig?

Mucho regardo,

P.S.: Guy, I couldn't help but notice that somehow you managed to escape their assault...I mean, there aren't any embarrassingly amateur photos of you posted on that site. No Flickr attack whatsoever. So the idea that you were behind this, I have to admit, did cross my mind, though I am willing to give your treacherous ass the benefit of the doubt.

Posted at 12:04 PM in a Desperate, Shallow fashion.
Make our "team" part of your "team"
jean-paul tremblayJean-Paul Tremblay written-ed, directed and co-produced a bunch of so-called "comedy" and "video" content, is notoriously competitive, and nonetheless settles for bottom-tier tokenism. Repped by John Herndon at Grape Dope Entertainment. Thrill jockey!
matt haberMatt Haber has written for The New York Times, Esquire, and The New York Observer. He is not allergic to pet dander and can do "ethnic" accents if the part calls for it. He is repped by Candy Addams at Entertainment 4-Every-1. Feeling special?
Guy Cimbalo is so cute! Yes, he is. Who's a cute little Guy? You are, you are! Guy's our very own star of stage and screen and is repped by Jeff Kwatinetz at The Firm. Rowr!
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