The Importance Of Being Earnest

Sometimes pursuing something earnestly is so earnest that it wraps the whole way around through self-parody and back into earnestness. For instance, Sonseed’s “Jesus Is My Friend”:

I first saw this video when it was passed along by my pastors, each of whom was taking friendly wagers as to whether it’s merely really, really bad 80’s Christian popska, or whether it’s so bad, so cheesy that it simply must be a modern a parody. If you guessed “parody”, well, aparently you’re wrong. Either that, or it’s a very well coordinated viral campaign.
In any event, enjoy the video, and good luck getting the song out of your head.

Risky Bidness

Tom Krewz!
So I don’t know if y’all have seen the depths of insanity to which Tom Cruise has been driven by the neo-Gnostic Cult O’ Hubbard, but Gawker has a long video of 1/2 of Tomkat blathering on about just what a spectacular human being Scientology has turned him into, as well as videos from the Huggy Bear/Flava Flav Freedom Medal Of Valor And Honor And High-Fallutin’ Whatnot award ceremony in which Tom sends a shout-out to ol’ LRH. Watch ’em now, as the Xenu-haters have already turned their legal dogs loose on Gawker and it’s only a matter of time before the barratry takes its course.
Then, after you’re done getting depressed at just how weirded out, mannnn, Tom Cruise has become, laugh a little at Jerry O’Connell’s pitch-perfect parody of the whole creepy incident.
Finally, finish the afternoon off with a soothing reminder from Jonathan Coulton that, hey, at least you’re not Tom Cruise, right?

Making Lord Of The Rings Accessible To All Literary Palates

I recently stumbled across a wonderful thread on the Straight Dope message board posing the following question: What if Lord of the Rings Had Been Written By Someone Else?
Some quick examples, starting with an adaptation that would make Theodor Geisel proud:

“Gandalf, Gandalf! Take the ring!
I am too small to carry this thing!”
“I can not, will not hold the One.
You have a slim chance, but I have none.
I will not take it on a boat,
I will not take it across a moat.
I cannot take it under Moria,
that’s one thing I can’t do for ya.
I would not bring it into Mordor,
I would not make it to the border.”
-excerpt from Dr. Suess’s FOTR.

And one that had me near in tears of mirth, an adaptaion in Lawyerese:

COMES NOW, plaintiff, Sauron, to file this original Complaint, and would show this honorable court the following:
1. Plaintiff and party of the first part, Sauron (“Sauron”) is a(n) (un)natural person, and resident and domiciliary of Mordor.
2. Defendant and party of the second part, Frodo Baggins (“Frodo”) is a natural person and resident of Hobbiton. Co-Defendant and party of the third part Samwise Gamgee (“Sam”) is likewise same.
3. All parties being properly diverse, jurisdiction is proper pursuant to 28 M.E.C. 1332. Damages far exceed the minimum jurisdiction of the court.
4. Defendant has converted and trespassed against the chattel and personalty of the plaintiff, namely, the One Ring (“Ring”) and is liable to plaintiff for same.
5. Plaintiff would further show on or about the final day of the Third Age, defendants did intentionally cause the destruction of Ring while plaintiff was engaged in defending his business from hostile takeover. In the alternative, plaintiff pleads that the actions of the defendants toward ring amount to recklessness, gross negligence, and negligence.
6. As a direct result of destruction of Ring, plaintiff has suffered actual damages in the form of irreparable harm to his business and personal reputation, as well as direct and indirect loss of income. Plaintiff has further suffered from mental anguish, humiliation, and loss of consortium.
7. Insofar as actions of defendants were intentional, plaintiff further requests punitive damages in the amount of treble his actual damages.
WHEREFORE, PLAINTIFF, SAURON, PRAYS FOR: all reasonable damages above named; FURTHER, plaintiff prays for all additional relief in law or equity deemed necessary and proper by this honorable court.
Respectfully submitted,
Mouth of Sauron
Attorney for Plaintiff
Middle Earth Bar No. 734925639

There’s 41 pages of the stuff, so I’m not going to be fool enough to tell you to “read the whole thing”, but it’s definitely worth more than a perusal.

Bad Dates

It appears that Indiana Jones’ application for tenure at Marshall College has been denied, to the shock of few. McSweeney’s has the straight dirt:

The committee concurred that Dr. Jones does seem to possess a nearly superhuman breadth of linguistic knowledge and an uncanny familiarity with the history and material culture of the occult. However, his understanding and practice of archaeology gave the committee the greatest cause for alarm. Criticisms of Dr. Jones ranged from “possessing a perceptible methodological deficiency” to “practicing archaeology with a complete lack of, disregard for, and colossal ignorance of current methodology, theory, and ethics” to “unabashed grave-robbing.” Given such appraisals, perhaps it isn’t surprising to learn that several Central and South American countries recently assembled to enact legislation aimed at permanently prohibiting his entry.

Heh. Go ye and read the whole thing.

Mainstream Media – Easy Targets For The Onion

Heh. The Onion takes the media’s “disgruntled soldier” meme and does it one better – Call Of Duty 2 Gamer Wonders If War Is Worth Dying 79 Times For:

“After weeks of fighting for every pixel of ground and seeing 180 degrees of carnage in every direction, you start to wonder if it’s really worth it,” said 23-year-old Avers, who has been decorated 1,327 times since 1995, when he began fighting on his Sega Genesis. “I’ve already given my life several dozen times in this endless, senseless war game.”
Avers added: “Some nights, it’s all I can do to ‘continue.'”

Read the whole thing.