The Rum and Popcorn 100

I got a lot of problems with these people!

1. Time Warner Broadband Cable

Not knowing how to diagnose an internet outage is just ridiculous. We sat here for three months being told that a technician would have to come over to get us back our broadband cable, but they mysteriously never called us back for an appointment. So we sat here without internet, and I slowly let my blog kind of die, along with my podcast subscriptions. All because we couldn’t get that appointment set up.

The one day, you get fed up and take the cable modem back to the customer service center and get a new one, and, well, whaddya know? That was the problem all along! We didn’t need a technician to come over, the modem was just broken. All’s well that ends well…

Are you kidding me? Really? Nobody over there has a basic troubleshooting list for these sorts of problems? How do you miss that huge one?! What the hell are you people doing! I HATE HATE HATE this company, and if I ever saw the roadrunner in the street I think I would tie it’s long neck in a knot and feed it to Wile E. Coyote. I’m pretty sure I could catch it, it often moves sluggishly and doesn’t run all the time if it’s too busy.

You suck Time Warner Broadband Cable, you sucked more than anything and anyone this year. Congratulations, douchebags.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | customer service | Leave a comment

2. Bankers!

Tom Wolfe once called these types “Masters of the Universe”, but this year exposed them as emperors without clothes. The weirdest thing about this financial crisis is that the idea of the unparalleled brilliance of banking and finance types, and by extension many high-up American executives, has taken a massive hit. Hard work, isn’t the key, it’s devising a way to get over and then getting out while the getting’s good. I mean, that was the plan here, right? These people are supposed to know what they were doing, and that’s what they were essentially doing.

Many of these types walk around as people who are supposed to know something the rest of us don’t. But it’s becoming more and more clear that many of these same folks don’t know as much as they think. And none of that thinking is geared in the long-term greater good, even in the life of their firms, it’s about making as much as you can as quick as you can, and achieving your star status or your level of fuck-you money. The idea of being caretakers of the American economy never occurred to them, or even caretakers of enterprises that employed millions and had been around for years. And that fundamentally is how we got into this mess. The mentality that “greed is good” was supposed to help the American economy, and for years we all bought in. Turns out greed might do well for a few in the short term, but it’s killing all of us in the long run.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | m.f.'n people!, news | Leave a comment

3. Sarah Palin

Couldn’t have a list without her, of course! So much to choose from, but I’m going to forget all the other stuff and focus on the one moment that really made me upset to even hear her speak Her declaration about “real America” and “fake America” was just about the last straw. And the last straw for many others. It was just the crystallization of her nauseating presence on the national stage. She seemed to represent the worst of conservative politics, and she finally became the face of it. You’re only a “real American” if you share our beliefs and vote our way. I mean, the sheer stupidity of the statement stands on its own; the idea that people who live in urban centers and blue states don’t care about this country is on its face, moronic. But her and politicians of her ilk so much believed in that playbook, of dividing and conquering, of belittling intellectualism, and science and thought that it seemed like a perfect thing to say. And the fact that she even said and that it once represented a successful strategy, made looking at her and listening to her even tougher to take than before.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | m.f.'n people!, politics | , , | Leave a comment

4. Beef

Not beef to eat, but beef as in useless disputes, feuds, donnybrooks, and contretemps. Too much of the year’s social schedule was defined by beef. I mean, people in our group always beefed, but they didn’t let it actually affect events and hanging out. Now it just keeps going to other levels. People were actually banned from people’s homes this year. Crazy. Not attending parties of people who have nothing to do with your disputes? Ridiculous. Knifing threats? Absurd. I’m sorry, people should be able to handle these kind of differences better, and it’s just plain stupid. I include myself in that, by the way. Luckily I was involved in one of the less serious ones. Here’s the way to go: don’t talk about it and don’t burden people with it. Use their apathy to win folks over. If they don’t feel like they have to choose sides and you’re not pressuring them, it’s unbelievable what a difference that can make.

 

December 30, 2008 Posted by | m.f.'n people! | | Leave a comment

5. A-Rod

Most annoying Yankee ever. Somnambulating through a good statistical/no hits of any real impact season, he decided to divorce his wife and learn Kabbalah. Which is cool, to each his own. He allegedly dated an older woman. I will always stand up for those men who enjoy the charms of a more experienced lady. Unfortunately when you leave your wife to study kabbalah with Madonna, who you may not even be boning, that’s going to get a little attention. By that, I mean lots and lots of attention by the tabloid media. Dude, does anybody even know who Jeter’s dating? That’s why he’s the captain. Really, man, do you just like coming off as a fool? I’d tell you that getting key hits in the clutch might help you, but they got someone else for that now. Yikes.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | pop culture, sports | , , | 2 Comments

6. the L train

Williamsburgers and East Villagers were told: Good news kids, more L trains!

Williamsburgers and East Villagers said: Yay!

Williamsburgers and East Villagers were not told: We haven’t got the faintest idea of how to control the flow of trains, so all the trains during morning rush hour now go about 2-3 miles an hour, stop frequently, and make a ten-minute commute extend to a dreary, slow-moving, claustrophobic, painful twenty-one!

December 30, 2008 Posted by | customer service | , , | Leave a comment

7. “Handout” Hank Paulson

Okay, I agree that we needed the bailout. What I forgot was that this was being run by the Bush administration. Supposedly, this guy knew what he was doing, but it’s pretty apparent that if you’re hired by George W. and friends, you can’t possibly know what you’re doing at all. And he doesn’t. He’s not supposed to be handing out government money just to hand it out, he’s supposed to be creating liquidity in credit markets. That’s the fundamental idea. Right? Not if you’re “Hammerin’ the taxpayer” Hank, who has no idea where the money’s going and apparently, no real idea of how to successfully execute this massive government program. Just when you think this government can’t possibly fail at a worse possible time, they show you again.

 

December 30, 2008 Posted by | news, politics | , , , , | Leave a comment

8. John Edwards

Cut and paste and italicize from number 9 and…voila

You can’t be a crusading trial attorney fighting for truth, justice, and the American way and then be boning your documentarian, dude! It just doesn’t work like that in 2008. If you’re a political figure of any importance, you will get caught. Period. But aside from that, why do insist on doing things that are, um, obvious, while your wife is fighting cancer? Everything about this just reeks of the stupidity of an arrogant man drunk on his own power. Well, drunk and horny.

Mitigating circumstance: Well, it stops him from running for President for again.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | news, politics | , , , | Leave a comment

9. Elliot Spitzer

You can’t be a crusading prosecutor fighting for truth, justice, and the American way and then be spending money on hookers, dude! It just doesn’t work like that in 2008. If you’re a political figure of any importance, you will get caught. Period. But aside from that, why do insist on doing things that are, um, unsafe? I mean hey man, they’re hookers! Just by being with them, it’s somewhat unsafe. Why take it to the next level? Is the ‘unsafe’ part something your wife wouldn’t do, so you risked your entire political career for it. You couldn’t wait for birthdays and holidays? Everything about this just reeks of the stupidity of an arrogant man drunk on his own power. Well, drunk and horny.

Mitigating circumstances: It was looking like he wasn’t going to be a very good governor anyway. Also, at least ‘Kristen’ was hot. Let’s be honest, often half the disgrace in many political sex scandals is just how beer-goggles hideous some of the participants have been. Yeah, I’m looking at you, Bill Clinton.

December 30, 2008 Posted by | news, politics | , , | Leave a comment

10. Brett Favre

If your least favorite quarterback got traded to your favorite team, what would you do? Well, if you’re like me, you vow to quit rooting for the team! So I did, and sadly, the alleged greatest quarterback ever did not make me pay for it. They collapsed like many a Jet team before them, and Brett Favre’s Jet jersey goes into the collection of “Jerseys that Should Never Have Happened” along with Joe Namath’s Rams jersey and Johnny Unitas’ Chargers jersey. I can’t say that I’m happy that I saw this coming. It was painful to watch, and I almost felt sorry for the old gunslinger. Of course, until the national media made excuses for him up until they no longer could. So this is how it ends, dissed and dismissed by the New York Post.

Mitigating circumstances: Everyone kind of forgot that he helped punch the Giants’ ticket to the Super Bowl with the kind of silly interception that truly great QB’s don’t make in the NFC title game. So without him, there’s no David Tyree. See Brett, some of New York still loves you!

December 30, 2008 Posted by | sports | , , , , | 1 Comment

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