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I'm Babbling

It’s been almost three months since my last article, which would typically mean I would pull out my trademark self-deprecating intro where I apologize for not writing in so long, admit that I’m in a rut, and claim that this is the article where I revive my career.

But I decided to give you the Cliff Notes version, instead. By the way, we should probably just go ahead and change that to the “Spark Notes” version by this point, if for no other reason than to pay back the great people at Spark Notes for getting me through every English class I’ve taken in the last 5 years. Whatever I can do to thank the losers who actually read the books and put up summaries for people like me, I should do it.

What were we talking about again? Oh yes, the introduction to this article. And since this article will probably be fairly incoherent and topicless (not technically a word, but in my opinion, pretty effective), I would normally just throw in my typical spiel about how no one comes to my site to read real articles and stuff. Blah, blah, blah.

Let’s just get to the point – I have a bunch of stuff in my head, I might as well write it down, and you might as well read it, either because you find what I have to say amusing, or because you’re trying to boost my self-esteem by reading my columns. In any event, you’ve made it this far, so I highly doubt you can keep yourself from finishing the rest.

So I got to wondering as I was flying for the fourth time in three days this past weekend – what was the thought process behind the Sky Mall magazine in the airplane seats? Who gets on a plane, sitting in coach no less, and looks through that magazine, sees a product like the “Dog Bed that Sprays Mist so the Dog Stays Cool,” decides that they need it immediately, forks over the $15 to make a phone call on the Airfone, then shells out another $250 so their dog can become even more lazy and spoiled than before?

And when I was flipping through the Sky Mall, I realized that it was organized in such a way that no matter now absurd a product is, you are virtually guaranteed to find a more ridiculous one on the following page. This way, by the end of the magazine, you get products like this: a Tequila “holster” (for women) that has a strap up to your shoulder where you can hold up to 10 shot glasses. Nationwide, I would say the over/under on women who would wear something solely to give them faster access to a bottle of Tequila is probably 4. And none of those would be sober enough to use that Airfone in the first place.

Why is it that whenever a basketball team begins to rally from a 10-15 point deficit, every TV and radio announcer has to warn us that “here comes that patented (Team Name) run”? Does every team have a unique run that they go on, so unique that it has a patent on it? Is the Patent Office just handing these out the first time a team ever comes back to win a game? I’ll go ahead and say it: if you’re an announcer and you use this phrase, I wish you and your family the worst.

I think you can safely say a movie has reached classic status when you are debating whether the guy at Rex Kwon-do holds up two fingers or one when he says “I’m gonna give you one chance… one chance.” And it is two fingers, I checked.

This is an actual question, not a sarcastic remark: does the term “wheezing” describe when you cough, then are incapable of breathing in through your mouth, so you sound like you’re having an asthma attack, followed by several more violent coughs, violent to the point that your eyes are watering profusely and you nearly vomit? Because if so, I don’t think the term “wheezing” sounds strong enough. I think we need to invent a new word for that (other than “scrumtrulescent”), like maybe “vargithraking” or “tortuvoming.” Something that sounds scarier.

I think we have reached the point with AOL Instant Messenger where the away message has become far more important than any actual conversation. It gets to the point sometimes that I would rather have no one be available, just so there would be more away messages to peruse. I mean, if I really want to get in touch with someone, I’ll just call them. As long as you’re online, you might as well just put up an away message - and make it a funny one please. We’re past the point that I actually care what you’re doing, so just entertain me.

And while we’re on the subject, here are a couple guidelines (mainly written for purposes of my entertainment only). First, please don’t put up the same quote or song lyrics every time, you might as well just tell me what you’re actually doing if you’re going to pull that crap. Second, don’t make your away messages so obscure that I either don’t understand the reference or don’t find it amusing (old Wu-Tang lyrics, quotes from friends with no citation, etc.). Third, please tell me where any random links are directed, because I’d like to know in advance if I’m being directed toward “video of skateboarder shattering their femur” or something like that. But that’s just me.

And before you call me an enormous loser for writing all that, keep in mind that you read away messages all the time, too. Yes, all of you. Although I am a loser.

At the risk of alienating 80 or 90 percent of my audience, I’ll say it: If you’ve ever “poked” someone on Facebook, you are a serious dork. If you consider poking someone on Facebook to be an acceptable means of flirting, you’re probably in Alpha Sig.

I thinks “Vicks Vapor Rub” is Latin for “placebo.”

OK, when they were filming “3,” when Barry Pepper ripped off his now-legendary “All I wanna do is race, Daddy,” did the director actually say, “Cut – great job, Barry. That was exactly what we were looking for. I wanted to make sure that this line was so over the top that no one would be able to watch the rest of the movie with a straight face.”

For whoever invented paper-rock-scissors, were those really the best three objects you could come up with? I know it’s one of the age-old questions, right up there with “why are we here?”, but why does paper beat rock? I think the exchange must have gone something like this:

Guy 1: All right, how about we use paper, scissors, and rock?

Guy 2: OK, that sounds good… wait, what happens when paper goes against rock?

Guy 1: Paper wins.

Guy 2: (confused silence) How does that work?

Guy 1: Look man, I don’t have all day to invent this game. It’s simple: paper “covers” rock.

Guy 2: (more confused silence) Ok, whatever.

Guy 3 (from background): That’s the stupidest game in the world.

Guy 1: Yeah right, Guy 3, like anyone can even know that.

And with that, I must leave you. I think someone just changed their away message.

Anders Larson Archive