NEW YORK—After his laptop suddenly stopped working earlier this week, chronically anxious man Henry Geller, 36, confirmed to reporters how nice it was to have an actual problem to worry about for a change. “I’ve got to say, it’s pretty refreshing to obsessively agonize over a real, concrete issue instead of some artificial mental construction,” said Geller, pointing out how much of a pleasure it has been to explain his problem to other people and, in response, hear them agree that he’s facing a difficult predicament rather than offering repeated assurances that the concern is solely in his head. “This…
Pretty funny rejoinder to their classic, “New Study Reveals Most Children Unrepentant Sociopaths”. Read the full thing here:
WESTON, CT—Visibly shocked and repulsed by her own behavior as she sat questioning the type of person she is deep down, unsettled 2-year-old Ellie Ritter admitted to reporters that she had no idea what compelled her to bite her friend on the face Thursday. “I honestly don’t know what came over me. I know Jacob took the train I was playing with, but I usually handle that kind of thing okay—but this time I…I bit him,” said a shaken and bewildered Ritter, sitting wide-eyed on a floor mat at her daycare… “I mean, this is Jacob we’re talking about. He’s my friend, my playmate. And I just went straight for his forehead like an animal. Jesus, what is wrong with me?” At press time, the unnerved toddler was staring uneasily down at her trembling, fingerpaint-covered hands and contemplating what other horrors she was capable of.
How do they keep this up? That’s what I’d like to know. Just in time for wedding season:
ROCHESTER, NY—After sitting through an outdoor ceremony officiated by the groom’s best friend, local parents Scott and Linda McNeil were clinging to the lone religious element of their daughter’s wedding, sources confirmed Saturday. “The vows they wrote for each other were nice, but the passage from Corinthians they used on the back of the wedding program was just beautiful,” said Linda McNeil, adding that she and her husband were both deeply touched by the inclusion of the biblical quote “Love still stands when all else has fallen,” which appeared beneath a verse from a Sarah McLachlan song. “I’ve always loved that passage, and it’s a part of the Scripture that really captures who they are.” McNeil then added that she knew the small image of a dove above the quote would have made her late mother very happy.
Another Week Ends: The Onion’s Guide to Mothering, The Happiness Industry, Selling Beauty, Cultural Christians, Sad David Brooks, and More Bill Fay
1. First off, The Onion has been doing marvelous things lately. Their insight into the human condition is always surprising, especially their sense for all the pressures of social life, how ridiculous they are, and how strange is our reliance on them for identity. Cue Mothershould, their new web series on how to be a better Mom. Our frequent use of scorekeeping as a description of our obsession with metrics and comparison has found its best video example since King of Kong, below:
2. In the dystopian scare department this week, Vicky Price of The Independent reviews a new book by William Davies called The Happiness Industry. Our unprecedented ability to…
Holy lord they got me good today:
PROVIDENCE, RI—Shedding new light on the biological underpinnings behind the behavior, scientists at Brown University announced Tuesday that eating appears to serve a number of key functions besides relieving anxiety. “While a considerable portion of food is indeed ingested in order to distract an individual from feelings of panic and insecurity, our research shows that eating actually confers several benefits beyond temporarily holding despair at bay,” said Dr. Sandra Lutkin, who explained that consuming food has been found to provide vital nutrients to the human body and in many cases replenish it with energy, suggesting that its primary purpose may not be as a coping mechanism at all. “In fact, we observed dozens of subjects and discovered that only a portion of the items they ingested were intended to assuage their apprehension about their job, relationship, or body image…” Although she cautioned the findings were tentative, Lutkin posited that there might be additional methods of eating besides frantically devouring a meal directly over a trash can or sink.
Another Week Ends: Even More Camille Paglia, Digital Soul-Training, Backstabbing Enablers, Apolitical Auden, and Masculine Christianity
1. Where to start with a hierarchy of most severe ‘little-l law’ in ‘secular’ society? We could start with body image, health, having cool experiences, and the like, but prosperity honestly takes the cake. And among the people who have already checked that box, it’s fast becoming political correctness. Political correctness is important, but its ascendant, uncompromising severity and occasional use as a class-code leads to a totalization which is, to say the least, in tension with the traditional (L/l)iberal ideal of discourse. Cue Camille Paglia, who had some fantastic things to say in America Magazine (Jesuits) about the backslide of feminism and…
And then, one Friday morning in February, a front-runner for Onion article of the year emerged, pun intended, ht BJ:
Another slice of verdict-related brilliance from America’s Finest News Source. That final line being particularly perfect.
SANTA CLARITA, CA—Instantly mobilizing in response to a coworker’s positive remark about his job performance, local marketing assistant Devin Brandt’s neuroses really put the genuine compliment he received through the wringer Monday, sources confirmed. “There had to be an ulterior motive hidden in there somewhere, right? Or maybe he was being sarcastic,” Brandt reportedly thought as three decades of neurotic impulses worked over the honest-to-goodness praise from every conceivable angle, quickly ripping it to shreds. “Oh, God, what if he complimented me out of pity? Maybe I’m doing such a bad job that he felt he had to say something nice just to make me feel better about myself.” Sources confirmed that while the compliment was forced to run the full gauntlet of Brandt’s neuroses, a tiny slight directed toward him later in the day was able to take root in his brain unhindered.
Another Week Ends: More PC, Orthorexia, Perfect Ripostes, Grace in Addiction in Asheville, SBTB Redivivus, and Implausible Pop-Country Songs
1. One subject that’s been on our minds lately is political correctness, the orthodoxy of speech by which the progressives are divided from the bigots. It’s a division almost as absolute as that between righteous and sinners, and the press and universities – places supposed to be bastions of the liberal ideal of open speech – have instead been on the forefront of the new censorship. Fredrick deBoer, a leftist activist and grad student at Purdue, weighs in:
I have seen, with my own two eyes, a 19 year old white woman — smart, well-meaning, passionate — literally run crying from a classroom…
NEW YORK—Saying that sometimes she just needs a little break from her daily regimen, law-abiding citizen Karen Garver told reporters Tuesday that she keeps herself on track with a weekly cheat day in which she allows herself to commit any crime she wants. “I’m pretty strict Sunday through Friday, but come Saturday I tell myself it’s okay to bend the rules a little and improperly dispose of hazardous substances or rob a liquor store,” said Garver, explaining that by setting aside one day a week during which she can evade tax regulations, cause thousands of dollars in property damage, or assault a stranger, she’s able to resist temptation the rest of the week. “Being able to pause from living within the law now and then definitely helps keep me on the right path. Sometimes I’ll make a big day out of it with my girlfriends and we’ll all go out and set a forest fire, and then lead police on a high-speed chase through a crowded residential neighborhood.”… Read the rest here.
NEW YORK–In an alarming shift of mindset that is said to have occurred so gradually that he failed to notice it at first, Westport Data Systems senior manager and career-driven man Matthew Bowers expressed concern Friday that his identity was no longer exclusively tied to his job. “I always saw myself as a high-performance individual who was focused solely on working my way up to VP, but lately I’ve been worried that I may be developing aspects of my personality that have nothing to do with climbing the corporate ladder,” said Bowers, 42, noting that he has recently observed in himself an “unhealthy” level of preoccupation with personal interests, activities, and relationships that can in no way give him a leg up professionally. “Just the other day, I was telling my boss about my son’s soccer game—at work, mind you—and he responded by calling me ‘a real family man.’ My boss called me that. It was a huge wake-up call.”…
Another Week Ends: Failed God Movies, Vintner Jesus, Modernized Evangelicals, Church-Nerd Humor and (More) Futile Resolutions
1. The Net’s been a little sparse this week due, I assume, to people traveling and days off work and such, so here’s a brief week-ender with a few good links. First off, at The Atlantic, Emma Green wonders why 2014’s most religious movies were some of its worst, citing Noah (which was pretty good in our books); Exodus, which seems pretty over-the-top/plain bad; as well as Left Behind, God’s Not Dead, and Heaven Is for Real, all of which we’d probably have theological (not to mention critical) reservations about. Anyway, she diagnoses a few interesting problems of the God-movie genre in our day:
Despite their varying…