kottke.org posts about The Onion
The On1on gathers news that seems like it should be from The Onion but isn’t. Like “Russian man busted for cheating on girlfriend when she spots him on the Russian version of google maps with the other woman”, “Accused of being gay, Spanish priest challenges Church to measure his anus”, and “China Bans Reincarnation Without Government Permission”. (via waxy)
The US has ratified a new amendment to the Constitution, the 28th such alteration. The Onion has the scoop:
“The provisions of the 28th Amendment will fully protect the right of all individuals to spend every waking moment utterly terrified at the thought of a deranged stranger with a semiautomatic combat rifle gunning them down,” said House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), explaining that the measure also permits Americans to suffer panic attacks anytime their loved ones go to work, school, malls, or virtually any other public location.
As I said on Friday, The Onion is perhaps our most emotionally honest media source.
The Onion takes on the CT school shootings in a series of articles. First, there’s Fuck Everything, Nation Reports:
Following the fatal shooting this morning at a Connecticut elementary school that left at least 27 dead, including 20 small children, sources across the nation shook their heads, stifled a sob in their voices, and reported fuck everything. Just fuck it all to hell.
All of it, sources added.
“I’m sorry, but fuck it, I can’t handle this-I just can’t handle it anymore,” said Deborah McEllis, who added that “no, no, no, no, no, this isn’t happening, this can’t be real.” “Seriously, what the hell is this? What’s even going on anymore? Why do things like this keep happening?”
From Right To Own Handheld Device That Shoots Deadly Metal Pellets At High Speed Worth All Of This:
“It’s my God-given right and a founding principle of this country that I be able to own a [piece of metal that launches other smaller pieces of metal great distances, one after the other], and if a few deaths here and there is the price we have to pay for that freedom, then so be it,” said Lawrence Crane of nearby Danbury, CT, who is such a staunch advocate of the portable deadly-pellet-flinging apparatuses that he keeps multiple versions of such mechanisms in his home, often carries one with him, and is a member of a club whose sole purpose is to celebrate these assembled steel things and the small bits of metal they send flying.
And Report: It Okay To Spend Rest Of Day Curled In Fetal Position Under Desk:
Following reports of a mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school that left 20 children dead, sources just confirmed that it is totally fine to spend the entire rest of today curled up in the fetal position underneath your desk. Early reports also indicated that sitting on the floor while holding your knees to your chest and slowly rocking back and forth is not only acceptable, but, sources said, absolutely understandable.
The Literally Unbelievable blog is collecting examples from Facebook of people who think stories from The Onion are real.
Published in The Onion more than 10 years ago after George W. Bush took office, Bush: ‘Our Long National Nightmare Of Peace And Prosperity Is Finally Over’ is just getting more and more prescient.
Bush swore to do “everything in [his] power” to undo the damage wrought by Clinton’s two terms in office, including selling off the national parks to developers, going into massive debt to develop expensive and impractical weapons technologies, and passing sweeping budget cuts that drive the mentally ill out of hospitals and onto the street.
During the 40-minute speech, Bush also promised to bring an end to the severe war drought that plagued the nation under Clinton, assuring citizens that the U.S. will engage in at least one Gulf War-level armed conflict in the next four years.
“You better believe we’re going to mix it up with somebody at some point during my administration,” said Bush, who plans a 250 percent boost in military spending. “Unlike my predecessor, I am fully committed to putting soldiers in battle situations. Otherwise, what is the point of even having a military?”
They probably should get a Pulitzer. (thx, andrew)
The Literally Unbelievable blog is collecting reactions from people on Facebook who think articles from The Onion are real. For instance, in response to The Onion’s Obama Finally Tells Rambling Tom Vilsack To Shut The Fuck Up During Cabinet Meeting, a woman wrote:
An intimidated verbal threat of abuse in the workplace, by this thug. Never work in its satan life and this is why America is being destroyed. satan hates truth. satan is lies, hate and kills anyone that gets in its way to continue to lie to America & it’s idiot followers.
Thug…that’s some sort of code word, right? (via ★vuokko)
Petri Purho, the rapid-prototyping enthusiast and mastermind behind Crayon Physics Deluxe, talked to The Onion’s A.V. Club about the puzzle’s point, the process, and winning the prize.
“I didn’t want to do a cheery kids game, where you’d have bright colors and cheerful music.”
Our Dumb World is an atlas of the World presented by The Onion. It manages to inform (poorly) and entertain at the same time. For instance, here’s their description of Israel:
Home to one-third of the world’s Jews and two-thirds of the world’s anti-Semites, the nation of Israel is a place so holy that merely walking in it can gain you a place in the World to Come, nowadays often within minutes.
And about the US, “The Land Of Opportunism”:
The United States was founded in 1776 on the principles of life, liberty, and the reckless pursuit of happiness at any cost — even life and liberty.
The atlas is also available in book form.
Classic article from The Onion: Somebody Should Do Something About All the Problems.
I hear jabber-jabbering about the discovery of new subatomic particles. What good is a quark to me? Three and a half minutes it takes to cook a bag of microwave popcorn.
Three and a half minutes! Someone is spending a billion dollars a minute to send radio messages into space, and I have to choke down a bag of Pop-Secret kernels that are only half buttered, some not even popped to full puff. God, I pray for a future when the inventor is the friend of mankind.
DNA fingerprinting — that’s what they’re doing now. And still strawberries at Bergmann’s are $2.99 a quart. It’s ludicrous. It’s as if we live in the Dark Ages.
Do We Really Want Another Black President After The Events Of Deep Impact?
Related: the latest episode of This American Life leads with a fascinating piece about how the funny happens at The Onion. In a lovely paradox, it turns out that the process of making funny things isn’t all that amusing…the sound of silence following the recitation of a funny possible headline in the writers’ room is deep and unnerving. (thx, marshall)
In his latest opinion piece, 9/11 Is Over, Thomas Friedman leads off with a description of an Onion article and then gets in some zingers of his own:
We don’t need another president of 9/11. We need a president for 9/12.
9/11 has made us stupid.
Guantanamo Bay is the anti-Statue of Liberty.
Those who don’t visit us, don’t know us.
Fly from Zurich’s ultramodern airport to La Guardia’s dump. It is like flying from the Jetsons to the Flintstones.
The Onion: “Despite the existence of cinema classics such as Citizen Kane, The Godfather, and Seven Samurai, the 2004 film Garden State starring Zach Braff and Natalie Portman is some poor fuck’s favorite movie.”
Ken Graney’s Roomba has broken the three laws of Roombotics. “The first law states that the device ‘must not suck up jewelry or other valuables, or through inaction, allow valuables to be sucked up.’ The second law prescribes that Roomba ‘must obey vacuuming orders given to it by humans except when such orders would conflict with the first law.’ The third and final law authorizes a Roomba to ‘protect its own ability to suction dust and debris as long as such protection does not conflict with the first or second law.’”
When I saw the title for this article — ‘Most E-Mailed’ List Tearing New York Times’ Newsroom Apart — I said, hey this is going to be pretty interesting. But then I click through and it’s The Onion. Which is funny and all, but I’d rather read a real article on the effect the most popular lists have on the decisions made by the editorial staff at the Times, the New Yorker, and other such publications.
Like most of the best Onion articles, this one hovers between absolute hilarity and extremely tasteless: Anna Nicole Smith Finally Reaches Target Weight. “Forensics reports reveal that Smith’s miraculous weight loss began on Feb. 8, when she was discovered unconscious in her Hollywood, FL hotel room.”
Area Man Accidentally Responds To Own ‘M4M’ Ad. “He lives right in my neighborhood, he’s a professional, and he loves to work out — he sounds sexy.”
Two interviewers for The Onion AV Club talk about how they prepare for doing interviews. “First, I think about what I might ask subjects if I were at a party with them, just making conversation. Then I read as many interviews as I can find with the subject, so I can avoid asking questions that have been asked a thousand times, and steer around the pat answers.”
Frito-Lay Angrily Introduces Line Of Healthy Snacks. “Weren’t Sun Chips healthy enough for you, you goddamn hippie bastards?”
This Onion story is right on the edge between humor and tasteless: Kent State Basketball Team Massacred By Ohio National Guard In Repeat Of Classic 1970 Matchup. I laughed, but I felt bad about it.
Modern-Day John Henry Dies Trying To Out-Spreadsheet Excel 11.0. “Now, 20 rows down, the accounting’s hard as granite — it’s the hardest thing an office man can stand, but you keep your pencil sharp, and you keep your pencil working. It’s the life of a numbers-crunchin’ man.”
The Onion moved to NYC from Wisconsin five years ago. Lessons learned? “If your life is going nowhere, don’t try, and it’ll all work out.”
The Onion provides a list of new guidelines from the Transportation Security Administration. “Vermont and New York cheddars can be brought on board, but not Wisconsin cheddar — by far the sharpest cheese in the cheddar family”.
Dear The Onion, please stop paginating your stories. I know you’re trying to increase your ad real estate, but it’s annoying to have to click to read more, especially on shorter stories. From now on, when I link to stuff like this excellent Errol Morris interview, it’s going to be to the handy one-page print version with zero ads. NY Times, Salon, WaPo, Wired News, that goes double for you.
The lofty world of food reviewing gets some much needed profanity and street-sensibility in this article, Food Critic Tears Radish Canapes With Salmon Mousse A New Asshole (The Onion, of course).