You Got Servered

The State Department's review of emails from Hillary Clinton's personal server continues to turn up items of crucial importance. A sampling:

From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: bboy@aol.comSubject: RE: funnybill,the one about the dead golfer is minimally funny. was somewhat funnier the last time you forwarded it to everyone in your address book, & exponentially funnier the time before that. also please ask Chels to show you how to bcc.--h From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: pralislassis@myway.comSubject: RE: Central BankDear Prince Islassis,Thank you for contacting me for help in moving funds out of your country for the Nigerian National Petroleum Company. I am obviously very interested. May I suggest you direct your inquiry to my colleague in the State Department, Dr. Kate Idontbelieveyou in the Whataloadofcrap division.You just got Hillaried, sucka. Boom.Best,HRC  From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: chelsea1980@gmail.comSubject: RE: AlsoHi, sweetie. Still having trouble with Skype. I did everything you said and still all I get is my own face. And BELIEVE ME I see enough of that every day! lolol! HA! Also our HBOGo password is RtWingConspiracy1234, you can use it anytime, your dad got ALL the Game of Thrones on DVD at Half Price Books anyway for some reason.P.S. could you help your dad again with the bcc thing, thanksLove, Mom From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: custserv@serverworld.comSubject: warrantyTo whom it may concern,I have a question about the warranty covering our recently purchased high-performance dedicated server. I understand that we're protected in case of overheating, parts failure, and software issues. But I was unclear about whether we were covered in the case of other everyday occurrences, such as flooding, power failure, hostile missile strikes or hacking by North Korea.Thanks in advance for your assistance. From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: habedin1@yahoo.comSubject: UGGGGHHHpls. do me a HUGE favor and let a. merkel know I'm soooo sorry, i'd get back to her emails sooner if they didn't all go straight to my spam filter. might help if she didn't use all those cutesy images & quirky animations in her signature file, don't tell her i said that, just sayin'.--hrc From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: bboy@aol.comSubject: RE: funnybill,"that's what she said" is not automatically funny in response to just anything, it has to make some minimal kind of connective sense in order for the comedy to be optimally successful.please get it together, thx.--h From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: askamy@tribune.comSubject: adviceDear Ask Amy,Do you have any advice for what a person should do if other people are constantly assuming that she's secretive, arrogant, controlling and accountable? I've been giving the problem some thought and the only strategies I can think of are:1. Withdraw, clam up, and punish these people for their audacity by keeping everything they want to know out of their reach, e.g., as on a dedicated high-performance server upstate, or2. That's the only strategy I can think of.Which I guess means I answered my own question and I don't need you to do anything at all. You're welcome.--Working Gal From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: chelsea1980@gmail.comSubject: RE: RE: AlsoAlways appreciate your helpful advice, sweetie, but all due respect, "lolol" and "HA" are not redundant; that's just the level of amusement I was conveying. I have a lot of joy and giddiness burbling up in me and they have to come out sometimes, lololololol HA lolLove, Mom  From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: and 17,000 othersSubject: RE: RE: RE: meetingsHello all.The next person who hits "Reply All" to this string is getting sent to Bosnia. (It's dangerous there; I could tell you some stories.):)No, but really.--HRC From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: bboy@aol.comSubject: RE: prioritiesbill,not judging or cramping yr style, just saying that if it's taking up half of a dedicated high-performance server then yr probably downloading too many videos. you know you can just watch charlie bit my finger on youtube as many times as you want, right? ask chelsea about this & also the bcc thing.--h From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: habedin1@yahoo.comSubject: schedulepls move the press availability about openness and transparency to eleven so we'll have time in the afternoon for the secret papers bonfire, thx.--hrc From: HRCFleetwoodFan1947@hotmail.comTo: bboy@aol.comSubject: honestlybill,no offense but I really think maybe you should think about getting a real job. no one shld know as much about you do as who's still on the view and who's not on the view anymore and why.sorry not sorry,hhillary_blackberry    

This is what it sounds like when doves condescend.

If you were faced with two doors to a shopping center, one labeled “Beautiful” and the other “Average,” which would you walk through?

In its latest inspiration-via-advertising campaign, Dove set up labeled entrances in Shanghai, San Francisco, London, Sao Paulo and Delhi, and filmed the results.

--Time magazine

Two doors labeled BEAUTIFUL and JUST KIND OF OKAY.  WOMEN approach, hesitate, proceed.

MAN: Excuse me! Why did you choose the door marked "Just Kind of Okay?"WOMAN 1:  It's closer.MAN:  But don't you see how beautiful you are?WOMAN 1: If I don't get this dropped off and make this call and pick up my kids in the next twenty minutes I'm screwed, so --MAN: But beauty is a spectrum...WOMAN 1: Dude seriously if you don't move I will end you.MAN: Go ahead.  --But you're beautiful.  --Never mind, didn't say anything.  --But you are.

* * *

WOMAN 2: I choose neither.MAN: You have to choose one.WOMAN 2: Why?MAN: -- Dove says so.WOMAN 2: Dove--?  Is this like, what, a soap commercial?MAN: It's -- no, it's a consciousness-raising kind of --WOMAN 2: That's like a big corporation or something, right? Who makes that, Procter and Gamble?MAN: Noooooo!... Unilever.WOMAN 2: This is bullshit, I'm going in one of those doors over there.MAN: --They're out of order.WOMAN 2: That person just went through one.MAN: Well. She -- is not beautiful.  On the inside. That is her cross to bear.

* * *

 WOMAN 3: Those are the only choices?MAN: They are!WOMAN 3: What about other stuff, like "smart" or "powerful" or "resourceful" or "funny?"MAN: That would be, uh, too many doors.  We're operating on more of a binary--WOMAN 3: I'm going to a different building.MAN:  But you're -- you're so beautiful!!  Why can't you see that like you're supposed to??

* * *

 WOMAN 4:  Do you have a door labeled "Unwitting Pawn in a Calculated Marketing Scheme?"MAN: That... would not fit on the sign.

* * *

The Man has a table set up with two choices: a beautiful doll or a pile of shit.

MAN: Excuse me!  Take a look at these choices... which one would you say most resembles you?WOMAN 5: Neither.MAN: But if you had to pick.WOMAN 5: I don't.MAN: But if you had to.WOMAN 5: I guess -- the doll.MAN: And... congratulations.  You... have acceptable self esteem.  I mean: you passed the test.WOMAN 5: Who are you people?MAN: We're people who care about how beautiful you should think you are.  ...And, and what soap you use.

* * *

The doll and the shit are hidden under boxes.

MAN: Just pick one.  No peeking.

WOMAN 6 picks -- they remove the box; it's the shit.

MAN: Ohhh, oh no, no!  How poignant and achingly sad!  Why did you pick the pile of shit? Do you not know how beautiful you are?WOMAN 6: It was under a box, I didn't know what it--MAN: You have so much unconventional beauty and you owe it to society to recognize that.WOMAN 6: Yeah, I know, I look pretty good.  Why do you have a pile of shit?  Who had to go and collect that?MAN: I'd rather not say.

* * *


MAN: Excuse me, miss, would you do me a favor and describe yourself to this man?WOMAN 7: Why?MAN: So he can draw you.WOMAN 7: Why?MAN: So you can see how you're a failure at feeling good enough about yourself and get a little cry-y and change your ways.WOMAN 7: How long is this gonna take?MAN: Not long.SKETCH ARTIST: About forty, fifty minutes.MAN: Not that long.WOMAN 7: And you're, what, a portrait artist?SKETCH ARTIST: Naw, I mostly draw people who've disappeared violently or who are suspected of crimes.

Woman 7 leaves.

MAN: Crimes like HURTING US ALL BY NOT BEING CONFIDENT ENOUGH, OF YOUR, YOUR BEAUTIFUL, Y'KNOW --SKETCH ARTIST:  You still want me to draw them like piles of poop?MAN: There's gotta be a better way to sell f'ing soap.



Aggrievopedia Brown is On Your Case

In a New York Times profile, the blogger and activist Charles Johnson -- often accused of being an internet troll -- spoke of having strong ties to law enforcement. "Have you ever read the book or heard of the book Encyclopedia Brown?  That's the capacity in which I help them."

 Socks Sodpucker marched into the garage and slapped twenty-five cents on the gasoline can next to Aggrievopedia Brown.  "I want to hire you," he said.  "Someone stole my lucky nickel, and I think it was Bugs Meany!"Brown thought for a second.  It was the kind of high-stakes case that could get him lots of attention, which he liked.  On the other hand, he was in the middle of writing stuff about the mayor's sexuality — this innuendo wasn't going to tweet itself.  Still, Socks was a good guy.browndetectiveagency"I'll take your case," Brown said.  "Let's go.""Okay," Socks said.  "I accused Bugs of taking my lucky nickel, but he has an alibi.  He said it couldn't have been him, because he was in the library at the time doing a school project on bears.  He said he was in the 'K' section looking up koalas.""That's a good lead," Brown said, "but I've got a better idea." The two boys marched up to the clubhouse belonging to a local gang of tough, strident, demanding, not-that-pretty girls who were always causing trouble.  They called themselves the Tigresses, but they might as well have called themselves the Annoyances, because they were annoying.Sally Kimball, the leader of the gang, was lounging on the porch painting protest signs.  All Sally wanted was a chance to get even with Aggrievopedia Brown someday, because he was always outsmarting her and had way more followers than she did.  "Well, look who's here," Sally said.  "What are you going to accuse me of today?""Let's figure that out together, Sally," Brown said, smirking."What are we doing here?" Socks whispered.  "We should be looking for Bugs.  He said he couldn't have snatched my nickel because he got arthritis from cracking his knuckles too much. If we hurry we might catch him—""So, Sally," Brown said.  "Where were you when my friend Socks lost his lucky nickel?""I was lying in the middle of Main Street protesting police brutality," Sally said."Sounds like something you'd do," Brown said.  "But I have reason to believe otherwise. You see, I've paid to have someone take pictures of your dad falling asleep in church.""That doesn't have anything to do with my alibi," Sally said."No, but they sure are embarrassing pictures," Brown said.  "There's drool and stuff."Socks tugged at Brown's sleeve.  "Hey, Bugs said he had a doctor's appointment this afternoon to get rid of some warts he got from a toad.  Maybe if we go there now—"Sally jumped to her feet, anger flashing in her eyes.  "You think you're so smart, Aggrievopedia Brown!  But you won't stop me this time!  I'm organizing a protest against rape culture tonight and we're going to clean up this town!""You sure anybody's going to show up," Brown said, "after I published those pictures of you picking your nose?"Sally glared at him.  "That wasn't even me!  That was some other girl entirely!"Brown shrugged.  "People think it's you now."Socks stomped his foot.  "Why are we wasting time here?  Bugs Meany is getting away with his crime!"Aggrievopedia Brown smiled at Socks.  "The crime is solved," he said.  "I know who took your nickel."




Aggrievopedia Brown knew that Sally took Socks's lucky nickel because Sally is a girl and girls always want to deprive white men of their power and their property.  Sally lives at 6160 West Elm Street, Idaville, FL 32301 and her phone number is (850) 555-1726.  The mayor is totally gay.

Surrender TiVo

NBC, CBS, and SyFy have all announced new Wizard of Oz-themed TV projects, including a medical drama and an apocalyptic adventure. It won't stop there.  Behold, a preview of the new series to be announced at the TV upfronts in 2015.There's No Place Like HomelandAgent Dorothy Gale conceals her delusions about witches and tornadoes from the CIA so she can pursue her hunch that there's something fishy about that straight-arrow Nebraskan who just arrived home to a hero's welcome in a hot-air balloon.  Committed to exposing him as a terrorist, she sleeps with him for some reason.LollipopGuildTwo One Half MenHilarity ensues when a rakish, self-destructive munchkin moves in with his buttoned-up brother and together they navigate dating, the drudgery of working for the Lollipop Guild, and the challenges of finding bowling shirts in the right size.Gale's AnatomyThe relentlessly introspective large animal veterinarian Dorothy uses nonstop internal monologues to explore her conflicted attractions to her coworkers, who she's adorably nicknamed McShiny and McFloppy.Wicked Witch of the West WingA literate and talky drama of crone politics, with conflicts big (assessing whether an enemy's water reservoir construction is a civil project or a weapon of mass destruction) and small (what to do with one's broom during long corridor walk-and-talks).Tin is the New BlackA blinkered hipster learns about life in a minimum-security prison, but the voyage of self-discovery screeches to a halt when the prison commissary stops stocking oil and he spends the balance of his two-year sentence motionless.Mad MonkeysRetro style meets office politics as white-collar simians compete with each other for accounts, promotions, and the cutest bonobos in the secretarial pool. But the smoothest silverback of them all conceals a crippling secret: he started life as a poor and wingless lemur.HouseHouse is a brilliant and crotchety doctor and diagnostician who walks with a limp because he fell on a witch and crushed her to death that one time.witchDing Dong the Walking DeadMUNCHKIN CORONER: "She's not only merely dead, she's really most sincerely dead. Also, she’s ambulatory and wanting to eat you. You might want to run." The others squint grimly at one another. RICK: "Can this wait, doc? The group’s kind of in the middle of a pretty big spat right now. "Walking With the StarsA panel of judges grades the efforts of celebrity scarecrows to cross the stage without falling down.  JUDGE BRUNO TONIOLI: "I have got hay fever!  You're like an orgasmic explosion of straw!  You may not scare any crows but you'll scare the competition if you keep walking like that, you bristly bundle of hotness!"Yo Glinda GlindaMagic, that voice, that hat, the freaky bubble, those weirdo friends — it's either a kids' show on Nickelodeon or something you recover from with Dr. Drew on VH1 (still in development).Dr. OzThe doctor behind the curtain prescribes green coffee beans to cure brainlessness, probiotics for heartlessness, red palm oil to restore courage, and socks filled with warm rice for a farm girl who just wants to go home. When these remedies seem to fail, Oz calls them miracle breakthroughs, releases a bunch of green fog, and cuts to commercial.Sex and the Emerald CityFour friends — the promiscuous Scarecrow, the cynical Tin Man, the uptight Lion, and Dorothy the shoe enthusiast — explore life and love in the green metropolis while rigorously avoiding its squarer, less viridescent boroughs.Melting BadThe wicked witch becomes an unlikely kingpin, building a thriving underground poppy empire to pay her dermatologist bills. Probably won't end well for her. "I am the one who knocks," she thunders, "because the bell is out of order!"Hunk DynastyWhile his sweetheart Dorothy is in a vague tornado-inflicted coma, red-state farm hand Hunk Andrews mines reality show hilarity from the building of a merchandising empire, focused primarily on sepia-toned vests and hats.  Quirky and heavily edited culture clashes abound: "Yeah, I told you, I am a friend of Dorothy —why you keep lookin' at me like that?"

Being for the Protection of English Majors

"Colleges across the country this spring have been wrestling with student requests for what are known as 'trigger warnings,' explicit alerts that the material they are about to read in a classroom might upset them" -- New York Times

The English department would like to alert potential majors that some of the literary works they encounter may spark unpleasant responses in populations with certain sensitivities. Please ask your instructor for suitable substitutes where appropriate. 

Do not read:

If you've had struggles or traumatic experiences with any of the following:


 Mrs. Dalloway

post-traumatic stress; defenestration; party planning

 The Scarlet Letter

slut-shaming; self-flagellation; heavy-handedness; Demi Moore sensitivity

 Lord of the Flies

beach vacations; pork products; sausage fests; Conch shell shock; summer camp

 King Lear

daddy issues; eye trauma; cracked cheeks; water damage

"The Metamorphosis"

pest control; fruit abuse; carapace irritation; familial intolerance of personal lifestyle

 To Kill a Mockingbird

mob-shaming; dog-shooting; recluse-pestering

"Dover Beach"

fear of heights; melancholia; open vowel syndrome

 The Corrections

repression; dementia; midwestern Protestantism; authorial condescension

 Atlas Shrugged

speechifying; people who like to talk about Atlas Shrugged 

"Hills Like White Elephants"

Drinking; bead curtains; similes; obliquity

"The Hollow Men"

rat phobias; pear intolerance; Conrad references


leg-ogling; biscuit assault; underwear objectification; excessive allusion; June 16

 Moby Dick

whales; whaling; whale-centrism; accidental amputation; cetacean albinism; minutiae

“The Raven”

weakness/weariness; surcease of sorrow; letting go; ornithophobia

 Fifty Shades of Grey

Breath hitching; lip biting

 The Grapes of Wrath

Family road trips; dust allergies; lactose intolerance