Tuesday, June 24, 2008

That sonovabitch had to go and die on us

Okay, I'll be honest - I haven't given George Carlin much thought over the last few years. Unless you're in the field and know his backstory, most younger folks probably look at him like an old curmudgeon. And I'd relegated him to that role in my own thinking.

Now he's gone, and instead of mooning over him and how great he was, instead I'm going to post a few resources here. Whether you already know and revere him, or you want to come up to speed on a guy who you heard used to be pretty hot stuff back in the day, check out:

The Kennedy Center had recently announced Carlin as their 11th annual recipient for their Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Few people walking this earth deserved it as much as he did. Now they'll have to give it posthumously - astoundingly ironic, considering his routine about death:

"'Older' sounds a little better than 'old,' doesn't it?," he said. "Sounds like it might even last a little longer. ... I'm getting old. And it's OK. Because thanks to our fear of death in this country I won't have to die - I'll 'pass away.' Or I'll 'expire,' like a magazine subscription. If it happens in the hospital they'll call it a 'terminal episode.' The insurance company will refer to it as 'negative patient care outcome.' And if it's the result of malpractice they'll say it was a 'therapeutic misadventure.'"

Thanks to MSNBC for publishing that, as well as a nice bio and selection of videos.

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Monday, June 16, 2008

Let me see your wheelbarrow

I was listening to a CD about building confidence in pricing one's consulting services, and the speaker related an anecdote which may or may not have been true, but it included a joke I hadn't heard in a long time.

The speaker/consultant had quoted a outrageous fee for one-on-one, in-person consulting. The sales prospect said yes, but only on the condition that, when they met, the consultant would show the prospect his wheelbarrow?

"My wheelbarrow?" the consultant asked.

"Yes. You know, the one you use to carry your giant brass balls around," the prospect replied.

These days, if there's a satirist who needs a wheelbarrow, it's Stephen Colbert. Here's a nice little profile of him for you, courtesy of CNN.
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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Is "Meet the Spartans" really satire?

That movie, a spoof of "300," is the first movie in Entertainment Weekly's list, "Satire Tracks: 21 Movie Spoofs in Our Twisted Timeline."

Sure, I know that the definition of "spoof" includes "light satirical imitation," so maybe I'm just a hard-case about honest-to-goodness "satire." But I'll go out on a limb and say "Blazing Saddles" is the only one that really belongs on the list...and none of the "Movie" movies do ("Scary Movie," "Not Another Teen Movie," "Epic Movie," "Date Movie" - wow, "Superhero Movie" didn't make the cut!)

How about you? Favorite satirical movie? Share it here! (And don't say "Dr. Strangelove." You've never seen it.)
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Satire pervades the web, seeping into mailboxes and mainstream news like a spilled cup of coffee. It stains and it won't go away.

The Bitter Cup is a collaborative blog for members of HumorFeed, a collaborative of satire and humor sites that has been making trouble since 2003.