I’m not a Trump supporter, but I think I know what it’s like to be one. After all, I’m a New England Patriots fan. I know what it’s like to be part of a group that has clearly had the rules systematically bent in their favor, only to develop a persecution complex when things don’t go our way once or twice. Also, I’ve talked myself into believing that the leader of my team doesn’t really mean it when he supports questionable political ideas. Most of the country hates us, but we win anyway. No wonder Tom Brady and Bill Belichick are friends with this Trump guy. If you were busy this week taking weird photos to announce that you are pregnant with twins, odds are you missed it.
Trump vs. Australia
This week, President Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull had a phone conversation, and it did not go well. At one point, Trump criticized a refugee agreement between the U.S. and Australia, and eventually he hung up on Malcolm. Sen. John McCain called Australia Ambassador Joe Hockey (who should really be the Canadian ambassador) to smooth things over between the two countries. I don’t know if the good-cop-bad-cop routine has ever been used in international diplomacy, this should be interesting.
Attention whore gets attention in attention-grabbing move
In the most predictable news story of the week, alt-right white nationalist darling Milo Yiannopoulos was forced to cancel his speaking engagement at Berkeley due to student protests. Yiannopoulos and his supporters criticized the violence conducted by some demonstrators, including a big fire, but really, they were just upset they couldn’t throw books into it.
Don’t eat fast food packaging
And finally, scientists revealed this week that chemicals used to block grease in fast food containers are leeching into our burgers, fries and burritos. Great plan, guys, telling Americans that fast food is bad for them hasn’t worked so far, but why not try it again?
Richard Spencer, the alt-right leader who probably only watches the first half of American History X, got punched in the face at an anti-fascist protest last week. This set off a debate over whether it is OK to hit a Nazi. But that’s not really the important question. To me, it’s like videos were guys get hit in the nuts. I believe that guys have a right not to get hit in the nuts, but that doesn’t mean I don’t laugh or watch it on repeat when it happens. If you were busy winning the AFC championship this week, odds are you missed it.
Going off the path
The Trump administration banned huge swaths of the federal government from sharing scientific data this week. This lead to the Badlands National Park’s Twitter account to go rogue, tweeting out scientific facts that support that climate change is real and humans are the leading cause of it. We should have known that the rebellion would start with those rugged, high-socked trail guides who know how to live off the land.
Say, what’s science up to?
It was announced this week that scientists successfully grew pig embryos that contained human stem cells. You fools, now we’re just a step away from creating ManBearPig!
The horror, the horror
Francis Ford Coppola announced this week that he was launching a Kickstarter campaign to create a video game based on his classic Apocalypse Now. For this one, I’m going to go lightning round. Ready? I wanted a video game, and for my sins the gave me one. In one level you are forced to choose between surfing and fighting. You understand, the game does not exist, it will never exist. In the virtual reality versions of the game, you will be able to smell napalm, morning, noon or night.
I accidentally sat next to a bag of drugs on the train home yesterday. For a couple stops, I was sitting in a row with someone next to me, then I noticed a woman get up and get off the train, leaving her row empty. I moved over and noticed a shopping bag with some containers and a couple pill bottles. Oh no, someone left their medication on the train! I picked up a bottle to find the owner’s name and contact information, except there was no label — same thing with the other bottle. They contained pills and powder. What if I just stumbled into a drug deal dead drop? I thought about taking the bag and selling the drugs, but as a suburban 30-something parent, I don’t exactly have the connections to move product like that. So I left it there. Someone’s big weekend plans are definitely ruined. If you were busy giving your buddy the Presidential Medal of Freedom this week, odds are you missed it.
Going for gold
This week, CNN and BuzzFeed reported that President Barack Obama and President-elect Donald Trump had been briefed on a series of unverified memos from a former British spy claiming that the Russians were trying to get dirt on Trump to use as leverage against him. One of the leaked documents said Russian spies had recorded Trump getting a golden shower from some prostitutes while in Moscow. Of course Trump likes golden showers. Have you seen his mansions? Golden everything!
Bots tweet about droids
Computer scientists stumbled across a large botnet of Star Wars-related Twitter accounts, it was reported this week. The researchers were taking a sample of Twitter accounts, when they realized they’d come across over 350,000 automated accounts all tweeting random quotes from Star Wars novels. The bots were created a few years ago, and stopped tweeting months after that. They were probably upset that they were no longer canon.
Gone to that big theme park in the sky
SeaWorld held its final killer whale show on Sunday, marking the end of an era. The final show came just couple days after Tillikum, the killer whale in Blackfish, had died. SeaWorld’s really serious about retiring these whales, aren’t they?
Well look who finally got on the “this year sucked” train. I’ve been doing this for years, everyone just finally caught up. I have a theory that 2016 was the Rapture. Everyone you love who was good is gone. Now we’re just in a hollow wasteland, and there’s the devil about. Either that, or we’re old enough that famous people we’ve heard of are starting to die off. This year was a lot like 1941 — we all knew there was conflict, and the headlines were really interesting, then an awful day toward the end of year made nothing feel the same again. This was indeed the worst year yet. Kim Kardashian had something bad happen to her for once. We cheered for sad sack teams. The Supreme Court became an octet. We held a months-long funeral for a gorilla we’d never heard of. We bought some Cuban cigars. We stood really still in videos. Let’s do to 2016 what it did to a lot of famous people, shall we?
Let freedom wear a c@#k ring
The armed hicks occupying a tiny federal office building at a remote Oregon wildlife sanctuary complained in a video that people keep sending them sex toys, including a whole bunch of dildos. The group made an appeal to “real patriots” to send them supplies, as they were so busy packing their guns they forgot to bring food and water for their camping trip. America responded by sending them plastic penises, which is a phrase I’ve waited to write my whole life. Upon hearing the news, Cards Against Humanity co-founder Max Temkin, really, sent the occupiers a 55-gallon barrel of lube.
Blowing up the airwaves
North Korea said it successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, but experts weren’t so sure it worked. In any case, the test marked another act of defiance of international sanctions. In response, South Korea set up loudspeakers along the border and began blasting K-pop. These two countries are like feuding neighbors in an apartment building. One keeps making the floor shake with loud thumps, so the other cranks their music, in this case, Psy.
From Mexico with love
After capturing escaped drug lord El Chapo, Mexican authorities published his text messages on his phone. Many were shocked not only to see that he was in contact with Mexican actress Kate del Castillo, but that his texts were quite romantic. He told her, “I’ll care for you more than my own eyes,” and even suggested having her meet his mother. Maybe we’ve got these guys all wrong. We just need to help these drug cartels find love and they’ll stop massacring entire towns. Continue reading →
Late night talk shows have to have celebrity gimmicks now. They’re all doing games with celebrities, or singing in cars with celebrities, or doing fake singing competitions with celebrities. These things are funny once or twice, but after a while the shows lean on them like a crutch. I don’t know, I’m a sucker for comedy writing. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but maybe Jay Leno wasn’t so bad. If you were busy waiting to go see a Star Wars movie that’s about Star Wars but not one of the real, numbered Star Wars movies this week, odds are you missed it.
Report: Trump was right about the election being rigged
This week, the FBI backed a CIA report that Russia hacked the U.S. presidential election in favor of a Trump victory. It’s also been reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin was involved in the decision to hack. But Republicans have decided it’s not a concern, as they cannot find a way to blame Hillary Clinton for it, yet.
Stocking the Cabinet
President-elect Donald Trump announced that he will nominate former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to head the Department of Energy, or as Perry calls it, “The uh, ummmm, the–I can’t, oops.” Trump also nominated ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, a friend of Putin, for secretary of state, rejecting a CIA report claiming Tillerson had been hacked by the Russians.
Optimism is overrated
And finally, a new report this week found that trying to always find the silver lining when things don’t go your way could actually bad for you. If that’s the case, 2016 has been a landmark year in mental health.
Last week my wife and I hosted Thanksgiving dinner for the first time ever. Technically, that makes us grownups. The thing is, I don’t think you ever really feel like an adult, you just do things you want or have to do, and without realizing it you make yourself into a decent member of society. A great example is the turkey I cooked. I had no idea what I was doing. I just googled things on how to thaw, brine and cook a turkey, and sort of did it on my own. It came out great, which means I’m a turkey expert now, only I don’t feel like it. If you were busy being named the National Mall’s first black Santa Claus this week, odds are you missed it.
Operation Rollin’ Thunder
This week, the Food and Drug Administration approved new trials for testing MDMA, the 90s and early 00s party drug better known as ecstasy, to treat veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. Test subjects so far have reported generally positive results, although they have requested that the Department of Veterans’ Affairs hotline hold music have more EDM in the mix.
Study: Your grandparents were right
A new study has found that the old adage “never go to bed angry” may be good advice after all. Scientists found that subjects were less likely to think back on something negative, like an argument, if they resolved the issue and had a solid night’s sleep. Those who didn’t resolve the issue tended not to sleep as well and were more likely to have memories of the issue associated with anger. The scientists’ wives remain unconvinced.
Secret to long life is breakfast at every meal
The oldest person in the world, Italy’s Emma Morano, celebrated her 117th birthday this week. She attributed her longevity to her diet of biscuits and raw eggs, which she has been eating for 90 years. So if you don’t want to end up like her, avoid those foods.
Hi folks. It’s been a couple weeks. Anything big happen? Oh right. Hey, so just remember that people aren’t all one thing. Trump voters aren’t all racists. Clinton voters aren’t all coming for your guns. There are certainly those elements in both groups, but people are wonderfully diverse and complex. We’re programmed to mentally lump groups together, and it’s easy to do that. We all have different experiences, priorities and points of view. We had a bad roll of the dice for leadership choices this time around. We’ll do better next time. Until then, let’s talk to each other and remind ourselves that we’re all living, breathing humans–except for the racists. If you were busy doing the mannequin challenge this week, odds are you missed it.
This week, it was revealed that a man in Yellowstone National Park ignored all the warning signs and went up to a geyser looking to take a relaxing dip. He then fell into the scalding hot, acidic water and ended up dying. If that’s not 2016 in a nutshell, nothing is.
Heh, we said ‘titular’
Disney’s “Moana” will be coming to theaters soon enough, but when it opens in Italy, it will have a different name. The movie is named after its lead. The titular character is a Polynesian princess that goes on some sort of an adventure. But in Italy the movie will be called “Oceania” because the name Moana is closely associated there with an adult film star Moana Pozzi. This is name change is expected to save millions of Italian men from going to the wrong movie.
Fashion person thinks she’s important
Designer Sophie Theallet has pledged to not dress future First Lady Melania Trump, and is encouraging other designers to do the same, because ohgodwhocaresit’sjustclothes.
I’m pretty sure I’m just watching The Walking Dead so I know what the hell people are talking about. I know it’s one of the biggest shows right now, but it’s felt tedious for about half of its existence. It takes place in a world where only whiny or awful people are able to escape the zombie apocalypse. The group we follow keeps running into bad dudes at the beginning of each season, so they kill them off and torch their homes in every season finale. Each time, the heroes get harder to root for. The show isn’t working toward anything. It’s just there to keep moving, which it is happy to tell us in the speeches its characters make 30 times an episode. If you were busy avoiding spoilers this week, odds are you missed it.
Oppressive government fails to convict those it oppresses
Remember that group of white guys that took over a federal wildlife refuge for no clear reason and even fewer supplies? You know, the ones who were so oppressed by the federal government that they took their rifles and played soldier on federal land for a few weeks? Seven members of Y’all Qaeda, including the Bundy brothers, were acquitted on federal conspiracy and firearms charges. Any moment now, Donald Trump is going to brag about the seven votes he just got.
North Korean flag not red, just wine-stained
This week it was reported that North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un has quite a taste for alcohol. A Japanese sushi chef who recently visited Kim said he is drinking and eating as much as ever. He even boasted of drinking 10 bottles of red wine at one meal. Many question whether Kim suffers from alcoholism, but the real issue here is who drinks red wine with sushi?
Jesus’ tomb to be opened
Researchers in Jerusalem are excavating part of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, what is believed to be the tomb of Jesus. They hope to open the tomb and make it available for tourists one day. But if you read the book, you already know Jesus isn’t in there.
Have you ever noticed that the people who complain about political posts on social media are the ones who post the worst stuff? They’re always the ones who share inspirational quotes, or food pictures, or a million selfies. In a non-election year, I hate hearing about your politics, too. But this is important, and people who have something to say about it have more value in my feed than cat pictures. If you were busy writing a long-winded takedown of Rick’s column this week, odds are you missed it.
Debate noticeably Boneless
The third and mercifully final presidential debate took place this week, and it was the most noted for not going off the rails for once. The biggest moment of the night was when Hillary Clinton called Donald Trump a puppet, to which the orange one replied that he wasn’t a puppet, but if he were to be one, he “would be the best, most elaborate and entertaining puppet you’ve ever seen, bleveme.”
A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week found that STD rates in the U.S. rose last year. The reported cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis all rose dramatically. Also up last year: reality dating shows.
Woman defies fast food, reaches 100
A 100-year-old woman in Pennsylvania was given a surprise birthday party at her local McDonald’s, and given a certificate for free food for life at that fast food restaurant. In future news, 101-year-old woman dead of heart attack.
I don’t think Billy Bush deserves to lose his job. At my first job as a reporter, I was assigned to do a profile on one of the candidates running for county sheriff. I got this guy because I was the lowest ranking reporter, and everyone knew he was nuts. The guy had a hairtrigger temper, and a persecution complex to go with it. During the interview, he railed about how this company or that person were against him, he spewed conspiracy theories, he even said if elected, he would throw the current sheriff and county judge in jail. I didn’t challenge him, I didn’t dig any deeper into his ramblings. I tried to remain agreeable to keep in talking. I wrote down what little of a coherent platform he had and got the interview over with as fast as I could. A few years later, he murdered his neighbor over some ongoing property line dispute. Billy Bush seems like a rich-guy douche bro who probably really believes what he and Donald Trump said, but I can’t prove it. All I know is sometimes you have to interview someone with the crazy eyes and in that moment, you have to roll with it. If you were busy winning the Nobel Literature Prize this week, odds are you missed it.
Ken Bone makes a boner
This week, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump yelled at each other on live TV for the second of three times. During the town hall-style debate, Ken Bone, a red sweater-clad voter who has somehow not made up his mind, used his opportunity to ask something of substance to the two people vying to be leader of the free world to instead toss a feel-good softball. Bone became an instant celebrity. He used his fame to endorse Uber, and did a Reddit AMA. The formerly anonymous Bone forgot to delete questionable Reddit comments, like his thoughts on certain porn stars and the murder of Trayvon Martin, before hand. As we have seen with Pepe the Frog and Chewbacca Mom, never become internet famous.
Last Trump releases diss track
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump saw GOP leaders withdraw their support for the horse they backed, with many calling for donors to instead put their dollars toward close congressional races. Trump fired back that he didn’t need the support of Republican leadership, and is ranting any time he gets a microphone. This is like when Ice Cube left N.W.A., or when Zayn Malik left One Direction.
Obama enjoys not being in politics anymore
President Barack Obama penned an op-ed about how the NASA and the private sector will partner to send astronauts to Mars in the 2030s. In the same week, he lifted the $100 limit on bringing cigars and rum from Cuba. Someone’s getting excited for their retirement.