Criticism. Essay. Fiction. Science. Weather.
1"Mark it 8, Dude." Get it?
Plus, fake facts are for sissies. 2The reality of the unreal
and the art of chewing. 3Getting interrogative with the Dark Continent
and ants are the Internet's idol. 4The author displays his clothes in piles on his bedroom floor. And 1,000,000 Rhode Islanders can't be wrong. 5One size counterfeits all, plus there's a run on limes and the movies don't talk good no more. 6The sweet and no-so-sweet of time travel
and the rigors of uncancellation. 7Personal Parties and Friend Finders considered 8Gamers of the world unite too much
and the new Star Wars scores. 9This week: one guaranteed way
to make yourself more famous. 10Awkward and tacky journalism in celebration of journalism. Plus, individuality now more expensive. 11There are balls in your head
and buds in your heart. 12The upsides of federal incorporation.
The downsides of shoddy adevertising. 13The first 90ways Quaterly Review begins!
1, 2, 3 pieces of Criticism! 14Not being able to look away from
bad grammar and junk material but still LMFAO. 15Spam can be fun if you don't
mind the corporate pimping. 16Some movies go Direct-To-Video.
We feel their pain. 17What the American media doesn't
want you to know about the Tour. 18Dumbing down The Honeymooners for
the preschool set; plus, pain as upper. 19It's 2005. Do you know what your
building's ecological ethic is? 20That building is whispering
ethical nothings in your ear. 21These movies will never know the
warm embrace of a projector lamp. Direct-to-video reviews return! 22The English language is growing & 90ways is on the case.
Neologisms Spoken Here. 23The American frontier is back and ugly as ever:
Here comes Sheriff Privatization. 24When making a British book into a British movie, it's all about the British, no matter what galaxy you're in. 25Condi bites the big one, Apple bites Condi, or Apple just bites. Plus, all the news that's packaged poorly. 26The Second Quarterly Review cometh... 27The rap album based on [adult swim]
has already been leaked. 28The road to Blockbuster is paved with good intentions: Direct-to-Video reviews are back! 29The preschool set belongs inside the lines
and the rain belongs in It. 30They're what everyone's talking with:
Neologisms Spoken Here. 31What time is it?
It's Standard Candy Time. 32Transportation is overrated.
And underrated. 3390ways' investigators go into the field.
And are vaguely saddened. 34See it again, whether you want to or not.
Picture this, in spite of yourself. 35Old comedians don't die,
they just get taken seriously. 36Pro: It's a 90ways debate.
Con: Both sides are just so salient. 37As long as Brokeback Mountain is sold out, we'll keep giving you Direct-to-DVD Reviews... 38At least we can all agree those people who say "Happy Christmas" are insane. 39The Third Quarterly Review
is ringing out the old year! 40New words for the new year. 41False starts and happy endings.
There's value in dead-ends. 4290ways has a confession to make.
We made up our history, too. 43Bringing you the latest from the world of dissembling: 90ways inaugurates the Hoax Report. 44It ain't about the facts, ma'am.
It's about the truth. 45Oscar nominations have been handed out. Direct-to-DVD movies snubbed again. 46What are the 90 points of it all? 47Spring: new growth, redemption,
Spring Traning. 48Technological advances notwithstanding, there's a whole new kind of static over the 6 o'clock news. 49O'Reilly's on the warpath.
The Chinese are not. 50The Hoax Report returns. And Canada beats Team USA. (That last part's actually true.) 51There's a lot packed into that intro and we feel no need to approach it in an organized manner. 52It's a surprise;
that's why you should have seen it coming. 53It's our party and we'll cry if we want to. 54Now that big, gothic banner looks positively antique. Plus, who cares about which cares about baseball. 55Being proud of Junior and bored in June. 56Every time I hear that song, I see a Cornell alum hitting a home run. 57What do heroin and Christian prayer have in common? They both star in the Direct-to-DVD finale! 58The cutting room floor in the desert.
The recording studio at first base. 59Tinted contact lenses and poorly delivered jokes. Foolproof. 60If you can't make a real quick 70 mill, how else do you justify a $125 million budget? 61Landmark case of 2006:
Orchestra v. Organ. 6290ways is interested in the words here, too. 63Everything in Criticism today is not quite right. 64Sports Utility Vehicles. Sort Of.
Sports. Golf, anyway.
65It's our Second Annual First Quarterly Review! 66Behold: The return of new word reviews. 67Bringing global warming in from the cold,
one dollar at a time. 68Don't believe the zinc industry's hype. 69It's crazy on the street.
It's best-selling on the teevee.
70Still crabbing about lost CD revenue?
Time to learn to shake your new moneymaker. 71Thrown into a plane.
With snakes. 72Space and Worlds and
snakes on planes. 73One giant vehicle is for war,
the other is for one day sales. 74It's all laid out for you.
From the numbing consumerism to the noble freedom. 75Sure the natural majesty was great,
but how about that Motel 8? 76One of life's great mysteries:
An Arby's in Mountain Time. 77Fall teevee is upon us.
Maybe some of it won't suck. 7852 + 26 = 78.
One and a half years of Ways. 79The smell of pigskin is in the autumn air. 80Someone needs to speak up in the name of common sense. 81New words are all around us.
Neologisms Spoken Here. 82What Dallas is now to someone who never knew it before: The Nostalgia Watch. 83Oh. The Horror.
A special Halloween installment of The Hoax Report. 84It was awful.
WomenAndChildren awful. 85It's like Carrie, but even better.
And somehow that became a great movie. 86He's in the corner.
And he wants to help you sleep. 87Up in the air. It's a bird. It's a hot-air balloon.
It's the 90ways Hoax Report! 88Tearing through the sentimentality and the water-colored memories: It's the Nostalgia Watch. 89Of all the Anabaptists in all the world... 90It's the week we've all been waiting for. 91We're reviewing the quarter to ring in the new year. 92Ringing it in is a burden we all carry. 93Am I my brother's keeper? 94This is all true. 95Notes to Notes.
Sometimes ears taste better than pens. 96Neologisms Spoken Here.
New words created through misappropriation. 97The lies of the diamond dealers. 98Crime, punishment, and the bits in between. 99Same name.
Different albums. 100All the forensics in the world can't
turn up any evidence of character. 101What makes America great
and not so great. 102Fanboy hand-wringing. Shocking. 103Panic in the streets,
Monsignor style. 104It's our second anniversary.
Break out the cotton. 105He kills for all the right reasons. 106The World's Cheese Imagination is within our grasp... if only. 107It's never an easy choice. 108Just give me one thing I can play for.
90runs: Blame Canada
You can call it a fluke. You can say Dontrelle Willis can't handle pressure. Make something up about the weather. Kirby Puckett died quite suddenly on Monday and maybe many American players, who as boys idolized the Hall of Famer, were still in shock. It's possible that it was a case of arrogance biting them in the ass. Whatever excuse you assign, the fact remains: last Wednesday night, the Canadian baseball team shamed Team USA, scoring eight unanswered runs before the Americans rallied to put up an inadequate six. Both teams finished Round 1 of the World Baseball Classic with two wins and one loss, but because of scoring technicalities, America has advanced to the second round and Canada must wait until 2009 for another chance to strut.
The surprise defeat of the Americans is a sign of the Classic's potential. It was a hint of the excitement this tournament can deliver; if America can be upset by Canada any team can be upset by any other team, and isn't that fantastic? It was shocking and newsworthy -- it was something to talk about at the water cooler. But that the Canadians aren't moving on is good for everyone. It's obvious that America's the better team and having them around for the rest of the WBC either makes for better baseball or provides the possibility for more stunning results.
The Hoax Report: Terri Schiavo
I remember reading about an African-American transient, named Andrew McGrew, who had the misfortune of falling out of a train and dying near a Texas town with a rather opportunistic undertaker. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When life gives you a hobo corpse without the money to bury it, embalm it and sell it to traveling sideshow. The undertaker did. McGrew was displayed as "The Amazing Petrified Man... The Eighth Wonder of the World" for fifty-five years. And so goes the story of a Texas tramp who became more famous after death than he ever was in life... Which leads me to Terri Schiavo...
Terri Schiavo, a Florida woman, lapsed into a coma when she was twenty-six, setting into motion a chain of events which would make the woman more famous after she became brain-dead than before. The only other people to achieve this have been Ronald Reagan and Anna Nicole Smith. Famous for what? Famous for being at the center of one of the biggest hoaxes of 2005.
There was no debate before the hoax. Every relevant court in Florida was in agreement that Ms. Schiavo was in a persistent vegetative state. The CAT scans confirmed it. Her husband confirmed it. There was even a note from Terri Schiavo stating that she was, in fact, brain-dead. Then, the videotape hit the media. It clearly showed Terri reacting to noise, commands, and thumb wrestling with Pope John Paul II. Then, the American public was given a choice: Whom are you going to believe: the tape or those crooked CAT scans and doctors?
The video was very compelling. So convincing was it that Senator Bill Frist used it to make a diagnosis on Ms. Schiavo's condition. Bill Frist has a medical degree; however, his job as a senator excludes him from the Hippocratic Oath. The senator declared that the diagnosis of the doctors who had merely examined Terri, first hand, was completely wrong. Then, the hoax was dissolved by the revelation that the videotape was edited... heavily edited... a Terri Schiavo highlights film.
Let us not knock editing. A highlights tape is the only thing that makes baseball seem interesting to the sober and Pauly Shore movies entertaining to those with taste. These heavily edited pieces do their jobs well. In fact, when it is time to pull the plug on me, I'd like an ad agency to handle my defense the same way. Something along the lines of, "Imagine a world without Charles Badley. Without Charles Badley, you wouldn't have that yo-yo, Bobby... or your dolly, Susie... Or safe, clean nuclear power. Charles Badley: Don't pull the plug."
You are asking yourself, though, if the videotape was so compelling, why wasn't the American public taken in, because, let's face it, the American public is astoundingly easy to fool; in fact, they make the residents of Hooterville look like the Brookings Institute. But, a hoax has its rules and its perpetrators broke those rules. This is why the Terri Schiavo hoax failed.
Order: For all successful hoaxes the order is hoax first, science afterwards. Science always dispels a hoax, so a hoax has a life span equal to the amount of time that it takes for someone to scrutinize it. With Ms. Schiavo's case, the science was already in and then the hoax was perpetrated. Bad timing, guys!
Intent: Here's a tip for anyone planning a hoax... let's say... crop circles. The primary rule is DO NOT RELEASE A MEMO TO A LARGE GROUP OF PEOPLE STATING HOW COOL IT WOULD BE TO GET EVERYONE ALL WORKED UP OVER CROP CIRCLES. Brian Darling, aide to senator Mel Martinez, wrote such a memo about Terri Schiavo's case. Then, in a fit of idiocy, it was included in a stack of documents given to Senator Tom Harkin, who had to make the memo his Christmas and birthday present.
Aesthetics: Face it, while in a coma Terri Schiavo really let her looks go. The average American will not respond well to being battered hourly by the non-attractive visage of a woman who has been inert for over a decade. Americans only respond favorably to the comatose if they remain attractive while in a coma, like Kate Moss.
So, what finally happened to Andrew McGrew? The sideshow went bankrupt and he was put into storage until found by a Dallas widow named Pace. Mrs. Pace kept the body in her basement and named him "Sam." In 1973, an undertaker volunteered to give the hobo a funeral. After Don McLean wrote a song about the man, someone was even inspired to purchase a headstone for McGrew. [Author's note: Don McLean wrote "American Pie" about the "day the music died". This did not inspire anyone to purchase a headstone for "the music."]
Which goes to show that, for some people, the death process happens all at once. For others, it happens slowly... in phases. It might even happen that after a person goes, they will lie for quite a while, oblivious to a cacophonous circus happening all around them.
Which brings me back to Terri Schiavo.