March 2, 2014

"Yes, I'm afraid one surefire sign that Pop has turned crackpot is that he starts to consider Charles Krauthammer [as] quite the cutting philosopher."

"A related symptom is when someone starts quoting Thomas Sowell as if he were de Tocqueville.... I consider myself blessed. My parents have not succumbed to the swine flu of Fox. Their TV addictions are Judge Judy, Judge Joe Brown, Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz (basically any show fronted by a judge or purported doctor), a few soap operas, the local Baltimore news, Jeopardy!, Wheel of Fortune, and, my father's personal favorite, Married...with Children reruns. This has kept them admirably sane and unsour, especially compared to the Simpsons grandpas shaking their canes at the sight of that radical red Harry Reid, and of course they have ME to beam the sweet light of reason from my command post in Manhattan should they ever find themselves trapped in a waiting room with that hectoring parrot Sean Hannity on the TV screen."

"ME" = James Wolcott, at Vanity Fair

1. I read that because, in search of blogging inspiration this morning, I impulsively opened all the bookmarks in my file labeled "left."

2. That was funny, funny of the palpable bitchery kind.

3. How irritated/amused are you by the crap your family members watch on television?

4. What exactly are they watching and why do you think it's any worse than the crap you are watching?

5. What do you think they think of the crap you watch?

6. How genuinely demented would your family members need to be before they'd stop serving as raw material for your humor writing?

7. Imagine them writing about you, with exactly the same form of humor you use about them. What do they write?

62 comments:

rhhardin said...

Wolcott did some nice lyrics for Paul Simon's Capeman, in Trailways Bus, if it's the same Wolcott.

googles

No, that was Derek Wolcott.

This one watches TV.

The other one reads classical poetry.

Who is more real. Well, he did work some classical poetry into the lyrics. That was real.

donald said...

Whatevs on Fox and Krauthammer, but there ain't one damned thing funny or smart about James Wolcott.

When I think of gaping vaginas of smug semi manhood, James is right there with the best of em.

Have vagina boy's parents watchd Wolcot on his Fox News segments?

St. George said...

Here is Wolcott's opening paragraph:

"Imagine the Village of the Damned set in a senior citizens' facility and you have the makings of a modern, grizzled horror tale, a Bruce Dern vehicle where vile imprecations are heard amid the spoonings of the pudding cups and the ominous wheeze of oxygen masks."

Not what I want to read on a Sunday morning or any other morning.

What a little magazine Vanity Fair is.

Anonymous said...

Making fun of your parents' television viewing habits: how urbane.

Ron said...

Wow, and Michael Moore and Rachel Maddow are such profound sages!

Bob Boyd said...

James Wolcott
Born December 10, 1952 (age 61)

St. George said...

I can't help but wonder if Vanity Fair in 1933 mocked people with polio.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

So -- get this -- I was in my bedroom, in my parents' basement -- I can affors such lodgings thanks to the high-paying world of comedy, thank you -- and after watching some internet porn -- that's what you do when you live in your parents' basement, you watch porn and eat Cheetos; if you do both at the same time your dick gets orange but that's another story -- anyway, I go upstairs to see if mom has finished my laundry (pause for laughter) -- and my parents are watching Fox News (wait for laughter, nod). Yep, after a hard day's work at whatever it is they do -- I never quite understand what they do, they talk about Harry in Accounting and my eyes glaze over, it's a medical condition: Work Avoidatitus. I'm Chronic. Dope reference, yes: again, I live in mu parents' basement. So there I am, watching my parents watch Fox News, and they're nodding in agreement, saying things like "That's Right" and "Amen" (pause for laughter) -- 'Amen', that's funny, the last time we went to church was when grandma died. No, no, don't laugh: I loved my grandma: of course, her dying meant I no longer had to share the basement anymore, so there is that. Anyway, where was I? Oh yes; my parents are watching Fox News, and my future flashed in front of my eyes: it won't be long until I am changing their adult diapers. cause that's what happens when you get old: your parents watch Fox News and become incontinent. That's why you see plastic slipcovers on the furniture in old peoples' houses: they watch Fox News and can't get up to use the bathroom. You know, Depends should just come out and make absorbent couch covers, it'll save everybody some time...Thank you, you've been great...

Anonymous said...

affors = afford. As in: I should afford the time to proof-read.

David said...

I do all the crap watching in our household.

Humperdink said...

I get a chuckle out of the younger mocking the elder generation.

Watched a bit of Up With Steve Kornacki this morning. I do this on occasion to see what the left is up to. Kornacki had four on the panel who were discussing the Ukrainian dilemma and what the US response should be. All four were slightly post-pubescent and of course, experts.

Quoting the Gipper: "Well, the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't true." Substitute the word "younger" for "liberal" and ding, ding, ding, we have a winner.

AJ Lynch said...

Why are so many libs so freaking afraid of one stinking cable channel?

Scott said...

James Wolcott proudly displays the kind of bigotry that passes for discernment among progressives.

Mark said...

This spearing of the boomers is only going to get more hilarious, you know.

Sadly, I don't think your generation will get the humor. But have no fear, it is on its way.

Sorta like obsolescence.

Edward Lunny said...

Well Mr. Wolcott, perhaps you and your ilk wouldn't be such insufferable prigs were your behaviors away from the pages of VF ,and the like, more representative of the values you purport to hold ,instead of the greedy ignorance one finds you, and they, so often demonstrate. Perhaps ,for a change, you should emulate the behaviors of those you attack, behaviors based upon the values and mores of those you target with your vitriol. Values and mores supported by behaviors that those folks display not for publicity, but, because they actually hold those values to be true. You, like so many of your ilk, talk a game that you do not participate in.

Anonymous said...

Mark said...

This spearing of the boomers is only going to get more hilarious, you know.

Sadly, I don't think your generation will get the humor. But have no fear, it is on its way.

Sorta like senescence.(fixed)

3/2/14, 8:24 AM

_______________________________

Anonymous said...

Mark said...

This spearing of the boomers is only going to get more hilarious, you know.

Sadly, I don't think your generation will get the humor. But have no fear, it is on its way.

Sorta like senescence.(fixed)

3/2/14, 8:24 AM

_______________________________

RecChief said...

heh. I only watch hockey games, nascar races, local news at 10, and reruns of classics (twilight zone, the rifleman, dick van dyke show, etc.) on TV

campy said...

What level of crackpotitude have you reached if you think Hillary! would make a good POTUS?

Carol said...

Now this pisses me off. I don't watch Fox much but have liked Sowell and Krauthammer since the 80s. They existed long before FN. Kraut wrote for the New Republic for crying out loud. Sowell had several books out. I read the Economics of Politics and Race back around 1985.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

So I'm down in my parents' basement, banging this chick -- okay, she was on the internet and I was masturbating, but the same idea -- and -- all of a sudden -- I hear this moaning from upstairs. Then I remember, that's right, the Megyn Kelly show must be over. Yep, that's what happens on Tuesdays: Dad watches Megyn Kelly and -- afterward -- he and Mom start banging away (laughter). Well, maybe not 'banging' -- I don't think old people can actually, you know, 'Bang', they'd probably break a hip and then the paramedics would have to come out and see my old man naked with a broken hip and a four-hour hard-on and the neighbors would all be outside, whispering, not a pretty scene: I mean, Dad, keep iy slow and missionary, okay? Anyway, what can I say? Megyn Kelly is hot, even for a right-winger: I'd bang her, but only with the Rachel Maddow Show on, know what I mean? Thank you, you've been wonderful...

Humperdink said...

RecChief, I am with you (save The Twilight Zone).

rhhardin said...

Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand. [Margery Williams, "The Velveteen Rabbit"]

etymology

Anonymous said...

Imagine them writing about you, with exactly the same form of humor you use about them. What do they write?

"I hereby leave all my worldly possessions to the Oakhill Animal Hospital."

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

So: what is it with Fox News having all the babes? Look, I know they're crazy as f**k, but II can't help but watch them...with the sound off (wait for applause). I mean, they get Megyn Kelly and we get what? Rachel Maddow? Nothing against Rachel, she's kinda cute in that schoolteacher way, but come on: Megyn Kelly is the Head Cheerleader, man. Rachel would have sex with you, but only after you handed in your homework. Yes, I know Rachel is a lesbian, but still... Now, if Megyn Kelly were a lesbian,THAT would be hot. Her and her Fox News babes, sitting in the jacuzzi after the show, doing those 'lesbian things' -- hey, I've seen lesbian sex videos, I know how it works: a hard day at work and then the massage oils come out (wait for laughter). Thank you, it's been great to be here...

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

In his snivels, Mr. Wolcott has quite omitted any specific criticisms of Mr. Krauthammer and Mr. Sowell, nor has he shown them in error. Like most religious nuts, Wolcott thinks simply naming the Devil is sufficient to drive him away. He can be safely ignored.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

People who mock their family members in print for laffs and to prove their tribal bona fides are classless douchebags who deserve to be ignored.

But other's opinions may vary, clearly.



AReasonableMan said...

Insufficiently Sensitive said...
In his snivels, Mr. Wolcott has quite omitted any specific criticisms of Mr. Krauthammer


Even if we ignore the Iraq war Krauthammer gets plenty wrong.

"The cumulative humiliations have transformed the former party savior [Rubio] into a figure himself in need of saving. How did it all go so badly? The Rubio Plan had sounded clever in the abstract. The premise, as Krauthammer had explicitly laid out, was that the party could jettison a single-issue position while holding fast to its cherished anti-government bromides. (“No reinvention when none is needed,” urged Krauthammer. “Do conservatism but do it better.”) Krauthammer may have been right that Republican elites would more willingly, or even eagerly, toss aside their fear of illegal immigration than revise their cherished anti-­tax, anti-spending dogma. But broadening the party’s economic message has turned out to be easier."

Krauthammer was apparently unfamiliar with the anti-immigration sentiment in his own party.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

I once dated a right-winger. No, no -- don't Boo, don't Boo -- she was a nice girl. By 'nice girl' I mean I had to meet her parents first before, you know, getting any (laughter). She was a very serious girl -- she even had a job: yeah, one of 'those'. The thing with chicks with jobs: there are always groceries in the kitchen (applause). I'll tell you one other good thing about dating right-wing girls -- no, no, this is serious knowledge I'm about to lay on you: they understand hygiene. Especially hygiene 'down there' (wait for laughter). Don't get me wrong, my liberal sisters, but a little hygiene makes some bedroom practices a little more... appetizing: yes, appetizing is the word I was searching for. Let's face it: if you have dreadlocks for pubic hair it might be time to consider a shower now and then -- we are not in France, you know. Thank you, you've been a delight....

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

So I was cat-sitting for my neighbors, they were on vacation, which is a way of saying they slave away as drones for fifty weeks a year so that they can spend two weeks as real people (applause) -- and I do what you always do when you cat-sit for somebody: you feed the cat and then look through the medicine cabinet (wait for laughter). Well, they must've taken the good stuff with them; figures. Anyway, I'm looking through their bookshelves, and they have all these right-wing books: by right-wing books I mean they were heavy and about history and economics and there was nothing by Steve Colbert or Michael Moore (laughter). There was an economics book on the shelf by an author named 'Hayek' and I thought: "Salma Hayek wrote a book on economics, really? I just thought she had great tits (laughter). Don't get upset at 'tits' -- I am a staunch believer in breast cancer support, yes, yes: I like to look at tits in twos and fours when I masturbate, call me a cave-man.... Thank you, thank you all...

EMD said...

Life is too short to give a shit what your family members watch on TV.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

I kid about my Father a lot, but I'll give one thing to the men of my Dad's era: they drank. They smoked. They smoked and drank and smoked some more. And I mean real smoking: none of this 'filters' crap. When I was a kid my Dad and his friends would be playing poker, drinking and smoking, and the kitchen looked like a waiting room in some West Virginia coal mine (laughter). The smoke clouds would get so thick I thought it would rain nicotine. And the women: the women would come back from the living room and refill the drinks and dump the ashtrays -- really, this happened (applause). Now if you light up a cigarette people stare at you like you're a leper. The pregnant women are the worst, like you're going to kill their unborn baby -- and this is in front of an abortion clinic (laughter).... Thank you, you've been very kind....

harrogate said...

It's the pose of august thoughtfulness that both Kraut and Sowell strike, as they get everything wrong. Krauthammer is a better writer from a literary standpoint but interestingly he's also managed to prove himself more insipid. With utmost dignity, of course.

Michael K said...

If any of those twits actually lived in a retirement community, as I do, you'd know that 1/3 of the TV channels are in Asian languages.

The Comedy Stage stuff is about what I thought young folks laughed these days. A slice of life with student loans.

Football season is over and Golf season is just getting started so my TV is off 99% of the time.

FullMoon said...

Gold, Beta, Gold

Anonymous said...

Thank you, FullMoon. I'm half-tempted to massage this into a quick stand-up bit and do a real open-mic in Seattle. See if they get the joke behind the hack jokes.

harrogate said...

Comedians making fun of their families is fair game so long as their families are cool with it. Maybe he's even got parents capable of laughing at themselves and the archetype that they reflect. We all fall into archetype mode all the time of course and are easy to laugh at. Even the special snowflakes like us who comment on blogs.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

You know those college chicks with the nose rings that hang out in front of Whole Foods trying to get people to sign petitions and initiatives and all that? Well... I dated one of those. (laughter) Boy, did she care about the world. She, like REALLY cared, she cared SOOO much, which basically meant I rarely got laid. It was hard for her to be in the 'mood' when there was so much oppression going on, having an orgasm to her was like betraying a starving child somewhere. It's not like the starving kids are here, watching us eat a sandwich; if they were here we'd be having sex and they would be raiding the refrigerator (applause). Look, I'm totally fine if a Charity wants to give food and orgasms to starving children in the Third World, but will it take all fifty states to ratify gay marriage before I can get a blow job? (laughter) And by getting a blow job I mean by her, not some married gay guy. Although if I was any more desperate I would certainly consider my options.(applause). Thank you very much...

Mariposa said...

Thank you for entertaining us Betamax3000. Nice to see a little pushback against the constant mockery and contempt directed at us old people.

Sam L. said...

I smirk at Wolcott's smirking.

Sam L. said...

Vanity Fair: A county fair for Vanity.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

So: I've been in a bit of dry spell of late; I'd like to think of it as 'between girlfriends' because that makes it sound like another one is already on the way, ready to share the magic of my parent's basement. Of course, the phrase 'between girlfriends' also makes me think of lying in bed between two naked chicks -- what can I say, it's been awhile. Which makes me wonder: do right-wingers ever fantasize about threesomes, or is that too progressive for them? I mean, I'm a progressive: if I was in a threesome I'd like to think of myself as a 'Community Organizer.' (laughter) I would love to do a LOT of organizing, if you know what I mean: the Community would be happier if you moved your foot a little bit to the left, say (applause). What would a right-winger do with two women? -- wait, wait, don't get ahead of me (laughter). I know, I know: he would fire one and pay the other woman less than he pays his male lover (applause). Bedroom, Boardroom, TomaTOE, To-MAH-to. Thank you, it has been a joy...

Anonymous said...

Day one of losing the Title Case and I am free: I can't stop myself. Blame Althouse.

Big Mike said...

My parents have not succumbed to the swine flu of Fox.

In other words, their minds are as tightly closed as his is.

traditionalguy said...

We watch the wife's favorite Modern Family and my favorite The Big Bang Theory.

But last night we caught another re-run from the trial scene of A Few Good Men with Tom Cruise, Demi Moore and Jack Nicholson.

The wife said that I remind her a lot of him...which was OK... until she explained she meant Jack Nicholson who she thinks is so ugly that he is attractive.

Anonymous said...

St. George said "What a little magazine Vanity Fair is." To which I'd simply add: its a perfect size for a small man such as James Wolcott.

jr565 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Owen said...

Betamax3000: brilliant! Love your stuff.

jr565 said...

"This has kept them admirably sane and unsour, especially compared to the Simpsons grandpas shaking their canes at the sight of that radical red Harry Reid, and of course they have ME to beam the sweet light of reason from my command post in Manhattan should they ever find themselves trapped in a waiting room with that hectoring parrot Sean Hannity on the TV screen.""


He thinks that Vanity Fair and the lefty screeds he engages in aren't the equivalent to Sean Hannity, but from the left.

Anonymous said...

Comedy Stage Open Mic Night Comic says:

One of the nice things about living as an adult in your parents' basement -- besides the cheap rent and free meals, I mean -- is that, when you are masturbating and they knock on the door, you can say "Go away, I'm masturbating!" (laughter). We're all adults now: we can say these things. In fact, as adults, we can talk with pure honesty: "Mom, I'm masturbating because I don't have a job and I don't have a girlfriend and I live in your basement (laughter). While we are at it, I fully realize the basement smells like skunkweed and ass: because I don't have a job and I don't have a girlfriend I've lost my self-esteem, and as such I do not change my underwear as often as I should: this is how my life is." (applause) And: "can we have macaroni-and-cheese for dinner, please? I'll eat it downstairs." Thank you, you've been great...

Anonymous said...

(off to breakfast)

lemondog said...

My dad is 67 years old,...

James Wolcott
Born December 10, 1952 (age 61)


What am I missing here?

lemondog said...

Wolcott wrote a novel, The Catsitters, published in 2001. In 2004, he published Attack Poodles and Other Media Mutants, a critique of right-wing media in the United States.?

What is with attack poodles and dog whistles?

Do 'they' not like dogs?

I repost:

He cannot be a gentleman which loveth not a dog.

John Northbrooke.

The Godfather said...

Aside from all the yucks I get from reading Wolcott, what intrigues me is the liberal assumption of intellectual superiority. People like Wolcott seem to have no awareness that the smart, sophisticated policies that they favor don't work. Just look at the last 5 years. But they don't seem to connect these failures with all the intellectually and morally superior people who caused them.

David53 said...

4. What exactly are they watching and why do you think it's any worse than the crap you are watching?

Wheel, Whatever news is on after Wheel, Big Bang, Walking Dead, Bachelor, Anything on Disney.

I don't think it's any worse than the crap I watch, we just like different crap. But it is really easy to make fun of Walking Dead and Bachelor.


5. What do you think they think of the crap you watch?

When I watch TV it's usually sports. They think it's boring. I get most of my news and entertainment from teh internets.

6. How genuinely demented would your family members need to be before they'd stop serving as raw material for your humor writing?

Does Seth Rogen write Alzheimer's jokes?

Fritz said...

Wolcott was the a$$hole who thought Hurricane Katrina was just desserts for the stupid southerners. His feelings on Hurricane Sandy seem to have gone unremarked.

David53 said...

I did watch Austin Roller Derby last night. It was pretty funny. The Cherry Bombs destroyed Las Putas Del Fuego.

Freeman Hunt said...

The family is split between FOX and MSNBC. All television news, apart from the weather during watches and warnings, is unwatchable. So is the rest of television.

I imagine that makes me "like some kinda Mennonite."

Freeman Hunt said...

When my father was alive, he only watched sports. Any sports. He liked that they were entertaining without tying one down.

Barbara said...

Go take a look at James Wolcott in any of his many on-line photos or videos. Yes, he is 61, but is fat, jowly, nearly bald, wheezes when he talks, and looks like he's ready (if not overdue) to check into one of those pudding-eating, oxygen-providing places he mocks. Can't think of anyone more deserving. I actually subscribed to VF for many years, I'm ashamed to say, and Wolcott was my major impetus for cancelling my subscription.

Strelnikov said...

What an asshole.

Robert Cook said...

I've never read anything by James Wolcott that I did not thoroughly enjoy, even when he writes about ballet, a subject (and artform) in which I have not the slightest interest.

The first thing I ever read by him was a column in the Village Voice published in summer 1975, called "Chord Killers." I was in my Junior College library in Florida, killing time between classes, and they carried the Voice. I liked to read VV and imagine living in NYC. In "Chord Killers," Wolcott wrote enthusiastically about the Ramones--NOT the first time I'd heard of them, as they had been blurbed in ROCK SCENE magazine, a NYC-centric rock-zine of the era--but it was the first prolonged description of them I'd read and I was immediately enraptured. I followed their rise from afar until their first album was released the following Spring--the first opportunity in those pre-internet and -cable days for me to actually hear them--and I bought the only copy at a mall record store I had to drive 30 miles to reach. I was not disappointed in RAMONES, and I have never been disappointed in Wolcott.