After hitting the wall a little while back, the Friday Random Ten+5 is back with a vengeance with Five Things That Have Been Annoying The Crap Out Of Me At Multiple Instances Over The Last Few Weeks. Enjoy.
This one has been going on for nearly the entirety of the presidential campaign season -- people saying "pundants" when they really mean "pundit." Even pundits themselves, supposedly intelligent people who are brought on TV to say trenchant things, are doing it. Note to everybody both on TV and off: There is no such thing as a "pundant," just as there is no such thing as a "nuke-you-ler" weapon or the word "irregardless." Stop mumbling.
Internet video that automatically starts when you open a page
When it comes to Internet video, I'm staunchly pro-choice: I want to choose whether I want to watch a certain video, rather than the site automatically starting it for me and shoving it in my face the minute I open the page. I can't tell you how many times, over the course of football season, I've opened up a game recap or something on ESPN.com to research something for the blog, and all of a sudden I start hearing voices and music that aren't coming from the TV and I'm like, "DAMMIT, WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?!?" And it turns out it's another one of those little ESPN highlight videos, starting right up without letting me get a word in edgewise. Seriously, guys, enough. I'm a savvy Internet user, I know how to push the "play" button. And don't even get me started on the porn sites that do the same thing.
Joe the Plumber
OK, we get it, you're a plumber. Well, you're not a licensed plumber, but we can't find anything else about you to hang your hat on, and you're built and live in Ohio and kind of have that tough-guy Vic Mackey look about you, so we'll turn you into our symbol of what "Joe Six-Pack" looks like and trot you out like a show dog all over the country without first bothering to check whether you have anything even remotely original or insightful to say. (Actually, that's pretty much the same level of thought that went into the selection of Sarah Palin as VP, so it's starting to make a little more sense.) And now it turns out Joe's just a big political pussy, throwing out accusations like how Obama will bring about "the death of Israel" and then punting when asked to explain exactly why he feels that way. I'm no more interested in what Joe the Not-Actually-Plumbing-Anything-At-The-Moment Plumber has to say than I am in anything Paris Hilton has to say, although in its own way, I guess that's a valuable lesson right there: that salt-of-the-earth blue-collar workers from Middle America can be every bit as vapid and worthless as airheaded blond Hollywood heiresses. I'm really glad we finally got that straightened out.
I can't tell you how many times I've walked into the public restroom on my own floor in my own office building and found a big ol' nasty brown trout or the unflushed remnants of same in one of the commodes. Flushing a toilet is not a lengthy, involved process, people. If you can open a car door, click a mouse, or masturbate for five seconds, congratulations, you've mastered the dexterity necessary to operate a modern-day flush toilet. The people who annoy me the most are the ones who are afraid of touching any part of a public commode because "It's gross and I'll get my hands dirty" -- the only reason that would be a concern for you is if you weren't planning on washing your hands before you left the restroom anyway, in which case you're the dirty, disgusting restroom user, not anyone else. It's almost enough to make me wish people had to sign in to use a bathroom stall so that if someone walks in and sees a floater, they could just check the last name on the list and then put a reprimand in that guy's personnel file.
A couple weeks ago my sister sent me a link to the atrocities pictured above, which combine the two dumbest recent trends in footwear -- Crocs and furry mukluk-style boots -- into one ass-ugly pair of shoes. So what would you call them? Mukluk Crocs? Or Croc mukluks? Either way, I can only hope that they're aimed at airhead pre-teens who are too dumb to know better, because if I see anyone over the age of majority wearing these, I might have to take 'em down. Just long enough to pull their shoes off and burn them, of course.
Hooray, I'm glad I got all that off my chest. And now the Ten:
1. Pet Shop Boys, "Flamboyant" (Scissor Sisters silhouettes & shadows mix)
2. David Holmes, "Radio 7"
3. Talk Talk, "Talk Talk"
4. Gorillaz, "19-2000"
5. The Chemical Brothers, "The Sunshine Underground"
6. Genesis, "Throwing It All Away"
7. Crystal Waters, "Gypsy Woman (She's Homeless)"
8. Sting, "This Cowboy Song"
9. R.E.M., "Let Me In"
10. The Roots, "The Spark"
Put your own Random Tens and/or list of grievances in the comments, folks, and enjoy the weekend.