The McBournie Minute: How Google killed April Fools’ Day

It’s just about the end of the day, and that means you’ve nearly survived April Fools’ Day, which is easily the worst day to have an internet connection. Suddenly, everyone thinks it’s a good idea to announce something jaw dropping and seeing who believes them, and even companies are getting in on the action.

It wasn’t always like this. April Fools’ Day used to be a day of elaborate pranks to get a rise out of people. It was once known as a day to either seek a playful revenge on a rival or get the goat of a good friend. No one puts Lifesavers in their friends’ shower head anymore, no one leaves a pair of pants on top of some shoes in the office bathroom stall and counts the hours until the EMTs are called. Today we settle for Facebook pictures of someone’s cubicle filled with packing peanuts.

What the hell happened to April Fools’ Day? Continue reading The McBournie Minute: How Google killed April Fools’ Day

You Missed It: End of 2012 edition

It's how I do my thinking.
It’s how I do my thinking.

Oh, hello there. I’m just here sitting back in my smoking jacket and enjoying a nice whiskey on the rocks (my third). You know, I’ve been thinking a lot about 2012. It really sucked, didn’t it? Stop and think about it for a minute, did anything good happen this year to anyone but Psy? Not really. However, it certainly was a wild, memorable ride. Perhaps it was the looming threat of the end of the world. It could be the heavy buzz I’ve got going, but I feel like looking back on the biggest stories of this year. Grab a drink and join me, won’t you?


Swingin’ Gingrich
Marianne Gingrich made her ex-husband, Newt, look even worse by dropping the bombshell that he wanted to have an open marriage. Apparently this is worse than asking your wife for a divorce when she’s recovering from cancer treatments in the hospital. Mitt Romney didn’t see what the big deal is–you can have more than one wife, right?

Also, they battle Hitler
In a story that can only end well, scientists in New York made “supersoldier” ants. I’m not really sure why this was so important to do, but now there are ants with really large heads. Their heads are so large that they are able to block the entrances to their nest when it comes under attack. Also, they do this really cool shield-throwing trick.

Equal time rule
A year away from inauguration day, and President Barack Obama was out on the campaign trail. He was raising funds, and he’d do just about anything for your money. At The Apollo, he noted that Rev. Al Green was in the audience, and did his own version of “Let’s Stay Together,” well a few bars of it, anyway. And he’s got the chops for it, too. The American public got to hear his pipes more along the campaign trail when he sang “Red Solo Cup” in Missouri. Continue reading You Missed It: End of 2012 edition

The McBournie Minute: Confessions at the end of the world

I never thought it would end like this. Then again, I’m sure that’s what everyone ever has said when their end finally comes. No one imagines how the end will come. Most of us try to ignore that there will be an end at all, really. Those who do, probably just give their best guess given the type of life they lead and various risks they take. So here we are, in the midst of our last week on Earth, and it’s nothing like I thought it would be.

First off, either the media is just suppressing reports of End of Days orgies around the world, or they simply aren’t happening. My local liquor store has yet to be looted, and there don’t seem to be any fires spreading throughout the city. This is the end of the world, and it feels shockingly like every other day. At least I can say I’ll never see 30.

But before I go, I’ve got a few things to get off of my chest. It’s confession/ rant time. Continue reading The McBournie Minute: Confessions at the end of the world

He’s taking a bottle

And taking swigs from it twice.
He’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice.
Santa Claus is coming … to a bar.

Remember the Santa we talked about a couple days ago, the one who was fired for being on the naughty side, rather than the nice side, of his list?

Well, listen close Virginia-there is indeed a Santa Claus. In fact, you can probably see him when you pick up your sloshed dad from the bar. However, we can’t say whether or not you’ll have to buy him a drink before you’re able to tell him what you want for Christmas this year.

Take it from Snee: War on Christmas Journal

Let me state clearly: I love Christmas. The presents; the food; the Eureka, Warehouse 13 and Doctor Who specials; pretending to understand Kwanzaa. I don’t even mind the religious part because there’s a good chance Jesus broke his mom’s hymen on the way out, and if you’re Catholic, then he put himself “up in her” in the first place.

But, no matter how much I get into the spirit (gin), I … that is to say … well, I just can’t get into the War on Christmas.

There. I said it. Continue reading Take it from Snee: War on Christmas Journal

We know which list he’s on

In other Santa related news

To paraphrase a line, it’s hard out there for a Claus. The recession hit all of us, and by all of us, I mean all on a global level. Which is true. And a part of the globe: the North Pole. Not all of the great toys could be produced, some of the elves had to be made redundant and a few reindeer had to be sold to … factories of questionable means. The worst part is that the bumbles no longer bounce.

So yeah, you can kind of see that morale up in the greatest of the white norths might be a little down, and positive feelings have to be garnered anywhere that they can be found. However, that does not excuse improper behavior.

Sadly, the Union Square Macy’s Santa didn’t get the memo. He’s been telling the same risque joke for more than 20 years, and one couple had had enough. As a result of the complaint, this particular Santa has been canned from that store. I blame the elves.

MasterChugs Theater: “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Every year around Christmas, there are two stories guaranteed to show up somewhere, sometime on television: A Christmas Carol and It’s a Wonderful Life. After its copyright was inexplicably not renewed in 1974 and the film tumbled into the public domain, the film could be found on the air literally dozens of times every holiday season, with versions as varied as crisp, black- and-white prints to murky, colorized bastardizations. Only when NBC obtained exclusive rights to the film, has the Christmastime tide of broadcasts been stemmed.

There’s no doubt that It’s a Wonderful Life is one of today’s most popular Christmas films, easily surpassing other favorites such as A Miracle on 34th Street and the aforementioned A Christmas Carol/Scrooge. Contrary to common belief, it was not an immediate hit, nor was it a complete critical and popular failure. Back in 1946-47, It’s a Wonderful Life received mixed reviews, and although nominated for five Academy Awards, the movie was shut out at the ceremony. And, despite Frank Capra’s popularity at the box office, it barely made back its cost.

In fact, it was the expiration of It’s a Wonderful Life‘s copyright that transformed it into a Christmas staple. Once the film began showing with such frequency during the month of December, a whole new generation of movie-lovers discovered (and fell in love with) the previously-obscure release. Critics of the ’70s and ’80s took a look at the movie, and the reviews were almost unanimously positive. It’s a Wonderful Life achieved its deserved recognition, albeit four decades after it was first released.

So it’s got that going for it. Continue reading MasterChugs Theater: “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Take it from Snee: You’re about to get dumped

Look, I don’t know how to break this to you, but … well, you’re about to get dumped.

Or you’re about to dump somebody. Either way, you are about to be alone, so very alone soon.

How could I possibly know that? Because of Facebook.

David McCandless, a London designer, just released a graph of status updates containing the phrases “break up” or “broken up.” He discovered two peak periods in which the phrases were used: Spring Break and the two weeks before Christmas.

Here’s my interpretation of his data. Continue reading Take it from Snee: You’re about to get dumped

Their first album was better, they’re sellouts now

Remember when the terrorists were angry, angst-ridden, had poor hygiene and general hatred of everything that is America? Yeah, man. It was 2001, and terrorism was the scene. I remember hearing about new and emerging terrorist groups on TV that were gaining popularity with their anti-corporate message.

It was just like grunge music.

And like grunge music, the harder, angrier side has given way to a less secure, depressed undertone. While modern terrorism today claims its roots in the good old days, it has grown into something that would make Kurt Cobain roll over in his infidel grave.

Just look at Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, the man authorities say tried to blow up a plane on Christmas. Only a few years ago, he was a lonely, pitiful, confused teenager reaching out to Muslim chat forums for friends.

“‘First of all, I have no friend[s],’ he wrote in another online post with informal, imperfect grammar. ‘Not because I do not socialise (sic), etc but because either people do not want to get too close to me as they go partying and stuff while I don’t. or they are bad people who befriend me and influence me to do bad things.

‘i have no one to speak too, no one to consult, no one to support me and i feel depressed and lonely. i do not know what to do.'”

He allegedly can’t even set his underwear on fire correctly. Emoooooooooo.