I Learned It From Watching You, Drew!

Yankee Gary Sheffield inappropriately gropes at a fan at Fenway Park last night; Jimmy Fallon inappropriately gropes at Drew Barrymore in Fever Pitch.

Many have argued about whether and how powerfully movies can influence our behavior. Should filmmakers bear responsibility when the scenes they present as fantasy are reenacted by overzealous fans? Generally, we prefer to encourage freedom of speech and personal responsibility, but when a filmic scene of overly intimate contact across the low wall at Fenway Park is so eerily reprised at the same spot in real life, it’s pretty clear where the idea came from.


Please Extinguish All Votives Before Takeoff

mass1.jpgSalvete in VaticanAir! Recumbete et relaxate in levamentum dum vos refovemus cum mantele madido.

Welcome to VaticanAir! Stretch out and relax in comfort as we refresh you with a moist washcloth.

mass5.jpgProbate defigere balteum vestrum per acensum descensionemque.

Be sure to fasten your seatbelt during takeoff and landing.

mass2.jpgGaudeamus praebere varietatem de materias lectorium pro iucunditate vobis.

We are happy to offer a variety of reading materials for your pleasure.

mass3.jpgServabitur prandium parvum per fugum.

Light in-flight refreshment will be served.

mass4.jpgCistas vestri portabitur cum curam maioram.

Your luggage will be handled with the greatest care.

[Indulgete omnia errata mea, magistri mei…]


Popestock 2005


Reports of the “festive” atmosphere in Rome, where hundreds of thousands of pilgrims have camped out to celebrate grieve the death of the Pope, can’t help but prompt speculation about how many little miraculous conceptions — immaculate or otherwise — might arise from this event. A clever newspaper editor should keep track of some of these pilgrims and then check maternity records in 9 months or so.

Of course, it should be no surprise that young love can blossom in even the gravest circumstances:


Satirical Shallow

Outrage! Jets Sold To Pakistan!

The already heated debate about the proposal for a new West Side stadium for the New York Jets has reached a new level of outrage and absurdity this week with the stunning news that the Jets are to be sold to Pakistan!

Now, I’m sure that the NFL would like to expand into Central Asia, but it seems like a losing proposition to try to impose, top-down, an American-style football regime in an area of the world that has had no experience with it. On the plus side, Gang Green’s color scheme matches the Pakistani flag rather nicely, so perhaps there’s hope after all.

[Thanks to Lamont Cranston for the tip!]


Texas Hoax?

pc-th.jpgAccording to the New York Times, Texas Homos, a play about… well, guess, was written by one Jan Buttram.


You know, we hate to be so skeptical, but after Dan Rather’s superscript problems, and Jayson Blair, and that time that some random Sub Pop employee convinced the Times that “swingin’ on the flippity flop” was what people in Seattle said instead of “hanging out,” wouldn’t the alleged authorship of this little bit of stagecraft raise an eyebrow or three?

But perhaps the liberal media types over at the Times are in on the joke? Exhibit A:

“Ms. Buttram doesn’t quite know when to stop; the momentum she builds is squandered by a drawn-out denoument.”


Isn’t That A Clear Conflict of Interest?

High Court to Hear Medical Marijuana Issue.

“Session” to begin promptly at 4:20.


Brooks in Paradise

David Brooks lectures his liberal colleagues among the “commentariat” today for fostering simplistic narratives about the slim majority that voted Republican last Tuesday. As Brooks explains, things are more nuanced: “there is an immense diversity of opinion within regions, towns and families,” he says, and “the values divide is a complex layering of conflicting views.”

So that means that grossly simplified socioeconomic stereotypes are not accurate or useful, and are, in fact, sloppy social analysis used by lazy journalists looking to make a buck? Talk about lowering the scales from our eyes! Thanks for disabusing us of our unsophisticated illusions, Mr. Brooks. Gee, I wonder where we ever got them in the first place


Worst Choke Ever

intangible2.jpgI’m not surprised, but now that it’s actually happening, it’s worse than I thought it would be. This is the worst choke since the drummer from Spinal Tap choked on someone else’s vomit.

EARLIER: Post-Imperial Melancholy


Post-Imperial Melancholy

40millionofmisery.jpgIt is clear that the Red Sox will soon delight their long-suffering fans by reaching the World Series for the first time since 1986. We applaud them for their historic comeback, as much as it irks us to lose to them, of all teams.

Undoubtedly, there are many readers who have no sympathy for the Yankee fan, and not merely the joyous citizens of the so-called Red Sox Nation. To fans of all other baseball teams, the Yankees and their fans appear much as Americans appear to the citizens of all other nations — spoiled with obscene prosperity that they then, adding insult to injury, proceed not merely to enjoy, but to expect, at all costs. To the rest of the baseball world, the Yankees are the hyperpower, led by a boasting, undiplomatic, bloviating madman named George, using their tremendously disproportionate wealth to tilt the playing field in their favor and to insidiously appropriate the resources of the less fortunate.


God Plays His Hand

From The New York Times, Letter Supports Anti-Kerry Bid Over Abortion:

A canon lawyer seeking to have Senator John Kerry excommunicated by the Roman Catholic Church because of his support for abortion rights said on Monday that he had ammunition in the form of a letter issued at the request of a senior Vatican official.

Although the “senior Vatican official” is not named by the Times, draw your own conclusions.