Light Hyperbole

« November 2014 »

Memo to everyone involved in the Worst Story Ever: GO FUCK YOURSELVES.

Now, when I say the Worst Story Ever, I am of course speaking somewhat hyperbolically, because we're not talking about something Holocaust-level bad here. But I'm specifically referring to not just the event, but the coverage of the event as well. And when you put all the pieces together, you've got the Derpfect Storm.

Let's start with the headline, because the headline's important. The headline, in our very own Minneapolis Star-Tribune, reads as follows: "Wis. Gov. Walker sneaks 'Go Packers' on beam meant for Viking stadium".

Already, you can begin to see the problem. We've got Scott Walker, who is, by even the kindest estimates, a complete and utter asshole. You've got sports rivalries, in this case a sports rivalry between two cities that are so geographically and culturally similar that the only reason for one to hate the other is the fundamental awfulness of human nature.

But it gets better, because immediately below the headline, which I implore you to read again, is a photograph. A photograph taken by a professional reporter at the La Crosse Tribune, of Scott Walker signing his message on the beam in question in chalk.


Doing something in public and then having a news photographer take a picture of it so that everyone can see that you did it. Sneaking. Two of these things are not like each other. You are a newspaper. Words fucking mean things. I know Walker's a shithead, but this was arrogant bullshit, not sneaky bullshit.

Also, if a genie appeared before me and gave me a choice to magically get money out of politics, or get pandering to stupid fucking interjurisdictional sports rivalries out of politics, I'd need a couple of hours to weigh the options, and I still don't know how I'd decide. Imagine a world where two governors don't have a publicity-whore bet in place at Super Bowl time, with each ponying up a crate of some iconic state... thing if they lose. I'd be plenty happy to be rid of that for all eternity.

By the way, while you were understandably focusing on the word "sneak" above, and then dutifully followed me on my diversionary paragraph about sports rivalries, you may not have noticed the relevance of another word above. That word? Chalk.

What do you think happens to a message, written on a steel beam, in chalk, before that beam leaves a Wisconsin steel plant and heads to the new Minnesota Vikings stadium? The message gets wiped the fuck off because unlike politicians, steelworkers are goddamned professionals.

And while i'm sure many Wisconsin residents would be pleased that, for a change, Scott Walker did something that ultimately affected nobody at all, except to briefly inconvenience a steel plant employee with a rag and, I'm sure, something better to do, the final outcome compounds the already ample pointlessness of the whole fucking enterprise to levels that enrage me more than the actual harm done by politicians, because at least that harm is for, you know. Personal gain.

That pointlessness didn't prevent, and in fact extended to, the comments section of the Star Tribune, which racked up TWO HUNDRED AND FORTY ONE comments on this story, and every single one of them, either praising or condemning the act, or praising or condemning another commenter, can also go and fuck themselves, because clearly they have nothing better to do.

So, no, this is not technically the Worst Story Ever, but to me, it's pretty fucking close.