Pic Tuesday




Unsolicited Commentary: Why We Need a Zombie Apocalypse

We’ve all seen the headlines.  We’ve all read the stories.  Some of us have even stupidly Google Image searched for the photos (if you haven’t, do not).

Could it be happening?

It happened in Florida.  It happened in Maryland.  It happened in that devilish wasteland of murder and chaos, Canada.  And all within the past week.  What does this all mean?

Is the zombie apocalypse upon us???

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) says no.  Of course, they may be lying  . . .  but probably not.  OR ARE THEY???  No.  These incidents are  just the result of drugs (read: bath salts) or mental illness (read: vegetarians finally snapping).

And I for one am disappointed.  I think we, as a society, need a zombie apocalypse right about now.  A massive outbreak of flesh-eating undead would be a welcomed phenomena in these times.  Why?  Because it’s probably the only catastrophic event we’d actually be prepared for!

Think about it.  A major terrorist attack sends our society and economy into a tizzy.  A hurricane hits, and it’s Beyond Thunderdome almost instantly.  We lose power for a couple of hours, and we start looting for guns and iPads.  Heck, we can hardly watch our team lose a basketball game without setting our couches on fire anymore!  Time and time again, we have proven that we as a society cannot handle even the slightest calamitous event without sh**ing ourselves (figuratively, most of the time).

But when the zombies come, most of us will know exactly what to do.  Most of us already have a detailed plan that we’ve been meticulously formulating for years.  We know exactly what weapons we’ll need.  We know exactly what means of transportation we’ll need.  We know what exactly kind of shelter we’ll need.  We know exactly where that shelter is, and we already know the most direct path to that location by heart.  And we know the annoying pissant we’re bringing with us to toss to the zombie horde as a distraction to aid in a getaway.

When the zombies hit, you will see a wave of precise and instant human coordination and efficiency the likes of which the world has never dreamed.  The true fulness of human potential will be revealed.  It will be a stunning and beautiful display of the power of the mind, body, and will, and will serve as the impetus for a more glorious future for all mankind.  At least for everyone who isn’t eaten or shot in the head.

Don’t try to deny this.  Everyone who has seen a zombie movie has actually seen several zombie movies and has, however internally, formulated a zombie survival plan.  It is a human reaction as natural as sneezing when breathing in pepper, coughing when inhaling smoke, and crying during the final scene of Harry and the Hendersons.

So while this recent wave of people-eating is probably just a fluke, hold out hope still.  You know, I know, and the Department of Health and Human Services knows that the day will come.  Rejoice in that knowledge.  Until then, put down the bath salts.

(Image source: http://handsonblog.org/2011/10/31/volunteering-tips-for-the-zombie-apocalypse/)

New York Knicks Pointlessly Win a Playoff Game For Some Reason

New York, NY – In a shocking and controversial move, the New York Knicks delayed the inevitable last night by defeating the eventual series winners Miami Heat 89-87, thereby forcing their fans to continue paying attention to the hapless team for a few more days.

“I can’t tell you what happened,” said Knicks coach Mike Woodson.  “Things were going as planned, and then Carmelo [Anthony] just starts hitting his shots from all over the goddamn place.  When we went on that run to take the lead in the third quarter, I shouted to my assistants “We’re really dicked now!’”

Carmelo Anthony was apologetic in a radio interview after the game.  “I’d personally like to apologize to our fans for my performance tonight,” said Anthony, who finished with 41 points.  “I’m sure they were all ready to move on with their lives, and because of us they now have to wait and watch us play some more.  I know, it’s so damn pointless.  I assure you all, this is not what we wanted.”

Knicks beat writer Thomas Janorus was less than forgiving in his post-game writeup.  “Just when you thought it was mercifully over, the agony continues,” writes Janorus.  “This team has put its fans through so much shit this past decade, and you’d think that they’d do one kind thing for us by putting us out of our misery quickly.  But nooooooo, they just couldn’t do the right thing for once.  This is like watching a straight-C high school student study really hard for his very last final.  It’s like, dude, you’re never going to accomplish anything.  Just give up!”

Despite the bleak reality of having to play another game, Anthony remains confident in his teams lack of a future.  “I guarantee to all of our fans right now, that we will lose Game 5,” said Anthony in his radio interview.  “You will not see another game like this last one again.  The long struggle will soon be over.”

Local Man Hears the Most Ridiculous Thing He Has Ever Heard In His Life

Albany, N.Y. – At 5:37 p.m. on April 23, 47-year-old Ryan Kyzinski heard the most ridiculous thing he had ever heard in his life.  Kyzinski was caught off guard when the moment came.  “I was just flipping through the radio stations in my car and I came across this news interview,” says Kyzinski.  “The interviewee was some hack shill for the governor who said something about cutting retirement benefits for some state workers being good for the state in the long run.  And there it was!  The most ridiculous thing I had ever heard in my life!  I even said so out loud.”

Kyzinski’s wife, Karen Kyzinski, was riding as a passenger in her husband’s car at the time.  “He said it was the most ridiculous thing he’d ever heard in his life,” says Karen.  “I was floored!  I was like, ‘Really?  Are you sure?’  He said, ‘Yeah.’  So I made note of the time, because . . . wow, what an historic moment!  The most ridiculous thing he had ever heard in his life, and I got to be there to share the moment with him!”

Kyzinksi’s family is already planning a large-scale celebration to mark to occasion.  “This is will be bigger than our wedding,” says Kyzinski.  “It only happens once.  You have to celebrate it!”

UPDATE: Jerry Wozniak, next-door neighbor to the Kyzinskis, is refuting Kyzinski’s claim as to the reported radio interview being the most ridiculous thing he had ever heard in his life.  “Just last week, we were arguing about the [Buffalo] Bills,” states Wozniak, “and I said they should think about drafting another quarterback, and Ryan said that was the most ridiculous thing he had ever heard in his life.”  Investigations into this claim are still ongoing.

Jennifer Lopez to Receive Participation Award at Billboard Music Awards

Los Angeles, CA – Billboard Publications announced this morning that Jennifer Lopez will be the inaugural recipient of the “Lifetime Participation Award” at this year’s Billboard Music Awards.  The award honors the recipient’s outstanding achievements in continuously releasing music that nobody buys.

“Our parent company’s CEO is desperately trying to boink J.Lo, so he demanded that we give her an award, any award, during the show’s broadcast,” said Billboard Magazine’s editorial director Bill Wrigley in an interview with Entertainment Tonight.  “That put us in an awkward spot, because the Billboard Music Awards honor record sales, and her albums haven’t sold worth shit for at least a decade now.”

Indeed, J.Lo’s album sales have been tremendously shitty of late.  Each of her last three albums failed to achieve Gold status, and she has not had a Platinum album since 2002.  Coming up with an award for Ms. Lopez while somehow retaining the show’s credibility proved to be a daunting task for the Billboard team, and forced them to seek inspiration from unconventional sources.

“I got the idea for the ‘Lifetime Participation Award’ from my daughter’s youth soccer league’s awards banquet,” said Mr. Wrigley.  “They gave out the ‘Champions’ trophy, the ‘Best Team Leader’ trophy, the ‘Most-Improved Player’ trophy, and then all the other little losers who could barely kick the ball each got ‘Participation Award’ trophies.  I was like, ‘Bingo!’”

In response to Billboard’s announcement, Ms. Lopez’s agent released a short statement: “Jennifer is thrilled and honored to be the first recipient of the ‘Lifetime Participation Award.’  She hopes that her receiving this award will inspire young, talentless singers throughout the world and show them that if you keep pretending that you’re a big star, sometimes the world will just pretend right along with you.”

While the award was created just as a means to help a rich man sink the sub with Ms. Lopez, Mr. Wrigley states that Billboard is planning on making it a regular honor at the annual event.  “When I brought the idea to our editorial board, somebody asked, ‘Shouldn’t Jessica Simpson get that award?’ And boom, we’ve got our winner for next year’s show already lined up.”

Update: Apparently inspired by Billboard’s savvy move, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced the creation of a similar “Lifetime Participation Award” to be handed our yearly at the Oscars.  The award will honor outstanding achievements in continuously starring in films that nobody sees.  The Academy has already announced that Jennifer Aniston will be the 2013 recipient.


(Image source: http://madamenoire.com/115929/somebody-lied-to-you-people-who-swear-they-can-sing-but-really-cant/jennifer-lopez-american-idol-00/)

Hipster Critics’ Corner: Daughter’s Piano Recital a Depressing Disaster

There are some experiences that cut you straight to the core and make you question the very purpose of life.  These are the moments that you try to forget, but know that you will never be able to no matter how many counselors you see or how many PBR’s you drink.

I have experienced two of these moments.  The first was watching my grandfather die of a heart attack right in front of me when I was ten.  The second occurred yesterday afternoon, when I had the sad displeasure of attending my seven-year-old daughter Stella’s piano recital at Mount Calvary Lutheran Church on East 8th Avenue.

Anyone who knows me knows that I’ve been a Stella fan from the beginning, long before she started playing to poser-filled recital crowds numbering in the dozens.   I discovered her not by recital flier or church bulletin as most have, but by the simple act keeping my ear to the ground.  Literally.  My home office is on the second-floor of our house, and her piano is on the first.

When Stella first burst onto the music scene last year, her work could only be described as raw and angry.  There was real honesty and pain in her songs.  Anyone who has had the pleasure of hearing her rare “Thanksgiving Sessions” tape recorded live from my parents’ living room can attest to the pure emotional tenacity she would attack her songs with.  Her playing resembled a cross between early Yeah Yeah Yeahs and a young Frederic Chopin before he sold out.  My wife and I still get goosebumps whenever we listen to her haunting performance of “What Did Mr. Turkey Say?”

Unfortunately, yesterday’s recital, the 19th Stella show I’ve attended, was a testament to just how far this once inspiring musical trailblazer has fallen.  Stella has clearly forgotten all that made her early work so profound.  She has succumbed, like so many greats before her, to the integrity-killing trappings of recital trophies and courtesy applause.

The show began with a note-for-note rendition of Stella’s latest hit, “The Little Fox,” a paint-by-the-numbers ditty that contains mere trace elements of her early-day prowess.  Thenceforth until the show’s merciful end, the experience was akin to watching puppies slowly die before your very eyes.  Avoiding all her earlier songs like misbegotten children, Stella soullessly floundered through three more forgettable new tunes that were all clearly crafted for the mainstream.  Finally, after the last notes of “Old Joe” were struck, the sobering experience was over.  I immediately walked out of the church, tossed my “Stella 2011 Tour” hat in the trash, and swore on my MacBook Pro to never again attend a Stella show.  My soul just can’t take it.

It’s a sad fact of life, but these things do happen.  Artists strike artistic gold, earn respect from us smug-elite, catch the ear of some wannabes, and soon thereafter walk away from integrity never to return.  Stella’s older brother, Asher, still holds out hope that she will get the fire back and return to her “Mr. Turkey” glory.  I, on the other hand, have seen this sort of thing happen too many times before and have already rightfully reclassified Stella in the same category as other sellouts like Weezer and Levi, my viola-playing nephew.

Hispanic-American Organization Asks Sofia Vergara To Tone Down Accent


Washington, D.C. – The National Council of La Raza (NCLR), America’s largest Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization, is making a plea to Colombia-born Modern Family actress Sofia Vergara to cool it a bit on her cartoonishly thick accent.

In an interview with a local ABC affiliate, vice-chair of the NCLR’s board of directors Victor Palencia elaborated on his organization’s position.  “When I first watched [Modern Family], I thought to myself, ‘Well, this is crazy offensive.’  We all thought the accent was a poor fake.  Seriously, how could it not be?  It made Natalie Wood’s accent in Westside Story seem spot-on authentic!”  (Editor’s note: Russian actress Natalie Wood, born Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko, portrayed a Puerto Rican in the Best Picture musical back before people got all huffy about that sort of thing.)

“All we’re asking is for her to take it from here,” continues Mr. Palencia, holding his hand high above his head, “and bring it down to about here,” lowering his hand to eye-level.  “We’re concerned that it’s just too easy to parody.  What was once an offensive caricature is now just a ‘Sofia Vergara impression.’  I mean, does she have to spend three seconds on every vowel sound she makes?  How about just saying ‘No’ instead of ‘NoooOOOOoooo’?”

The NCLR also posted a link to an online petition on the homepage of its website asking Ms. Vergara to gringo-up a bit.  As of press time, the petition had over 30 thousand signees, including curiously familiar names like “Penélope C.” and “Selma H.”