March 27, 2012

Trivia Blog: The Fabric of (the End of) Our Lives

These Trivia Blog posts come from the emails I send out as Quizmaster of the Gael Pub Trivia Night every Tuesday.  But seeing as how they comprise most of the writing I seem to do these days, I thought it fitting to include them on the Pale Writer blog as well.  I won't include things like info about categories or drink specials, but will keep the bulk of the rest.  Hopefully you enjoy, so much so that you come out some Tuesday at 8:30 (3rd Ave. b/t 82nd and 83rd)...

Forget hoodies, it’s the cardigans you’ve got to look out for…

It must be hard for a once-popular figure from the 80s/90s to have to stare into the abyss of celebrity mortality and realize that people just don’t give a damn about you anymore.  Some, like Corey Feldman or Dustin Diamond, make desperate plays to reclaim their former greatness, showering the world with uber-depressing reality shows or eyeball-melting pornos until our collective short attention span finally outweighs our morbid curiosity and they fade into obscurity for good.  Others, like Neil Patrick Harris or Robert Downey Jr., tap into a deeper well of talent and make much-deserved comebacks to re-achieve their former A-list status.  And then there are people like Geraldo Rivera, who go the Glenn Beck route and just say the stupidest shit that comes to mind in order to remain part of the national conversation.

For those who missed it, last week Geraldo made headlines and drew the ire of many, many people by making claims that murdered teen Trayvon Martin was partly responsible for his own shooting death because of the hoodie he was wearing, and then threw gasoline on his own conflagration of verbal diarrhea by not only defending his claims, but pulling out the race card in his own defense.  In a sad attempt to remain relevant and get some airtime, Geraldo basically claimed that a hoodie killed Trayvon Martin.  The lunacy of a man whose mustache is equal parts Yosemite Sam and Ravishing Rick Rude giving fashion advice aside, let me point out two things:

1.  Geraldo’s statement was crass, unthoughtful, misguided, and smacked of a (hopefully) soon-to-be-extinct, Andy Rooney-esque, “get off my lawn, you damned kids” rhetoric that always comes off as pathetic and out of touch.
2.  Geraldo actually brought to light a perilously important fact:  Some articles of clothing are out to get us.

You may think the idea is ridiculous, and you may think I’m just trying to stretch a very thin premise into a complete trivia blog post, but consider the following:
  • The turtleneck has no credited inventor.  Many just assume that it was simply a practical neck-warmer that eventually wound its way into mainstream fashion, but certain historians, theorists, and that pantsless guy in the produce section at Walmart claim that turtlenecks started out as regular shirts, but have slowly extended their reach upwards, biding their time until they strike, cutting off the airflow of the people who still think turtlenecks are cool.  Like the great Mitch Hedberg once said, “If you wear a turtleneck and a backpack, it’s like a weak midget trying to bring you down!”  Turtlenecks already took out Steve Jobs; who’s next?
  • You know that little skull you often see serving as the clasp for a bolo tie?  That’s not just a shitty fashion choice; that’s the end result of the bolo tie coming to life and snatching a small rodent or bird out of a tree before feasting on its adorable features.  The skull is left as a warning:  ”Don’t come near, or this happens to you.  Also, my owner probably drives a truck with oversized tires and has ill feelings towards immigrants.”
  • Hitler.  Mussolini.  Pinochet.  Idi Amin.  Darth Vader.  Freddie Krueger.  What ties these brutal murderers together?  Hats.  Always with the hats.
  • Most people think that Bill Cosby’s character on The Cosby Show simply lacked fashion sense and had an innocent affinity for terrible sweaters.  The real truth, however, is that the sweaters were part of a hidden, evil race of torso-shaped creatures who, when viewed by enough people, would call the evil demon god Cthulhu from the depths and unleash his terrible wrath on all of humanity.  Thankfully, the show was cancelled in 1992 before enough episodes could be produced, and Bill Cosby unwittingly became the greatest champion the human race has ever known.
  • Trucker hats.  I don’t have any fake facts to list about them, but anything that rallies that many douchebags under its spell has to be evil.

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