Greg on Gadgets, Girls, Games, and Ghetto Ish


Rebecca Black- Harbinger of the Culturepocalypse

Now before you all roll your eyes at the sight of yet another unimportant member of the general public expressing rage toward an 8th grade girl who became famous singing about a certain day of the week I have come to dread, allow me to assure you, I’m better than the others. That being said, I’d like to take this time to break down the toxic, corrosive presence embodied in talentless teen Rebecca Black.

Oh, she'll be "kickin" all right

Referring to the title, I truly believe we may be facing the end of American popular culture as a whole. Now it’s not Black’s fault completely. Justin Bieber, Twilight, Soulja Boy and the last decade of Disney productions (namely Miley Cyrus, Jonas Brothers and other subhumans manufactured by the profit-and-youth-consuming legacy of Walt’s frozen head) did most of the leg work. Consider Rebecca Black the straw that broke the camel’s back. But instead of a camel, it’s my shreds of hope for humanity and instead of a straw, it’s a Rebecca Black sandwich with sparkly, auto-tuned camel shit for bread. You see, America’s standard of quality that media needs meet in order to achieve popularity has plummeted, making so people like Bieber and Black can have millions of plays on YouTube in a week and Michael Bay’s Transformers are taken seriously as works of cinema.

In other words, it seems as though to be enormously popular, a piece of media must be:

1) Completely devoid of balls. Disney creations and Rebecca Black are no-brainers for this criterion, while films like Hop and Diary of a Wimpy Kid and shows like iCarly and whatever’s on Cartoon Network nowadays (I can’t risk actually checking or i may slip into a blind, tv-destroying fury followed by a deep depression) might have slid under your sacklessness radar riding on the “kontent 4 kidz!!!” excuse. But even this children’s programming has fewer bpm (balls per minute) than their counterparts of yesteryear. Consider Hey Arnold. That show was real as all fuck- bunch of misfit kids in Brooklyn, some minority tensions, muggers, real shit. Now look what Nickelodeon’s become:


2) Superbly annoying. There’s just something about Rebecca Black and her culture-killing comrades that makes level-headed persons universally and unanimously want to slap both their individual shits and collective shit. It’s that voice that sounds like a frustrated cow trying desperately to untie her udders after a group of local boys decided to practice sailing knots on nearby cattle. It’s her utter (not intentional) inability to write lyrics beyond the scope of her archetypical pre-weekend experiences, the sequence in which days go, and the relatable societal concern of seat-based indecision. Meanwhile lyricists starve and get single digit playcounts on Soundcloud (speaking of which, I don’t know about you, but I sure as hell do not need lessons on the order of days from some chick who probably got her first period the week before recording that song.

Inability to choose a seat- latest updated symptom of autism?

That’s about all I can handle for now without developing a rage-induced ulcer, but I’ll be back with more rants and laments toward the current state of popular culture. Maybe I’ll make it a regular thing, who knows. Stay classy, fam (I’m allowed to say “fam”, right?).


P.S. I’d like to add that the ARK Music Factory is indeed a factory in every sense of the word, except that only white people work in it. Still, the label contains ghoulish incarnations of Upton Sinclair’s nightmares all the same.


How To Build a Generic Rap Verse That Dumb People Will Love

Pardon the enormous title, this isn’t a Panic! at the Disco song. Recently, my talents were commissioned to write a verse for a remix of the popular Wiz Khalifa song “Black and Yellow” called “Black and Blue”. My only instructions were “it’s supposed to be like motivation” and “no swearing”. Knowing my audience, I used a mental checklist to construct a flawless pop rap verse (link to the song included):

-Using the phrase “you already know”, implying a reputation that precedes an introduction

-Clever, easily understood reference to a popular movie

-Clever, easily understood, non-offensive religious reference

-Use of staple vocabulary that white people still can’t fully grasp such as “lames” and “ball” as a verb

-Sports reference that neither makes complete sense nor requires any actual knowledge of sports

-Reference to jewelry

-The term “(noun) status”

-Ending a clause with an adjective

-Any word ending in -matic

-Racing analogy

-Offer to “teach” opponents your successful way to replace their unsuccessful way

-Clever reincorporation of the title

-Explicit reference to violence

-Conclusive punchline

Now you try!


Smelly Kant

A few days ago, I learned about a philosopher named Kant. Kant is a shit. For someone whose career it is to think, he is profoundly dumb. Let me explain. His principles regarding morality can be summarized as follows:

1) If people think long enough and thoroughly enough about a decision, every person will inevitably come to the same conclusion, that being the “right” answer, both morally and logically.

No dice, you filthy Kant! Are you saying that people are inherently flawed by having “free will” (debatable, but not the point of this rant) and that every choice has one absolutely correct option and at least one absolutely wrong one? Well, that sounds like polarized malarky, if you ask me.

Red Foreman suspects dumbassery

2) Actions must be evaluated solely on the “goodness” of the action. Possible consequences and emotional implications are irrelevant and must have no impact on the decision. In other words, “Don’t _____ because _____ is wrong because it’s bad because it’s not good.”

Are you telling me, you fungus-infested Kant, that humans possess the ability to perceive consequences and emotions so that we can ignore it? If that were the case, only the mentally disabled, lacking higher cognitive functions, are capable of making “right” decisions since only they can act without considering the consequences or the emotions of others impacted by the act. Reason #1 why I believe Kant is likely secretly handicapped. The lecturer made a point to mention that Kant practiced what he preached, living a moral life free from the burdens of emotions or social interactions (check and check for Asperger’s), making his philosophy a veritable bathtub full of lube for Kant’s chronic intellectual masturbation (granted, it was the closest thing to actual masturbation that Kant would allow himself).

Future professor of Kantian psychology

The lecturer then proceeded to describe an application of diseased Kantian morality through the following example:

You’re out on a walk when a woman you’ve never met runs up to you and says “I’m being attacked and chased. I’m going to run left. If the man chasing me asks you which way I went, tell him I went right.” What do you do?

While many would lie to preserve life (and perhaps win the affections of a grateful lady), the drooling Kant contends that “since lying is wrong, there isn’t a context where it’s right, so you shouldn’t lie because its bad to lie”. Allow me to deconstruct this grand old Judeochristian morality-fueled nonsense.

First of all, in a raggedy Kantian ideal, this situation should not exist. The man shouldn’t be attacking the woman, the woman shouldn’t have made herself so easily attackable, she shouldn’t have involved another person, much less a stranger (you) and especially shouldn’t have asked that stranger to compromise his honesty to a rapist/murderer/assaultster. Unfortunately, since this scenario is realistic, and stupid Kant’s principles are inherently contradicted by the system, the elements of said system remain unscathed by the palpable idiocy in tight Kant’s doctrine.

This is how you KNOW you've fucked up

So which is more likely: That flappy Kant is right and our reality happens to be completely flawed, or that Kant is an idiot detached from the actual world?

"Can I hear me now?"

Soaking Kant’s most prominent fallacy is that, like theoretical physics, his ideas only apply in a vacuum. In other words, Kant would be the smartest man in a room containing only Kant.


GAH! A Good Ol’ Fashioned Rant

Today was more annoying than usual. My psych class is just too much for me to handle; I’ve finally thrown in the soaked proverbial towel and am going to try to change periods. In a typical day, the teacher will hand out some kind of busywork/note-taking guide riddled with spelling and grammatical errors. She likes to use the excuse “I’m not an English teacher,” but I believe that all educators should uphold a certain level of academic integrity which includes not using adjectives as adverbs or ignoring the helpful red dotted underline provided free by Spellcheck perhaps sheerly out of spite. Maybe an ex-boyfriend worked on the development team. Maybe you were beaten savagely with a dictionary as a youth. I’m not qualified to speculate.

Who wants to be a millionaire...'s human table!

After these note sheets (or as I sometimes call them, “a perfect waste of what may have served as toilet paper with the proper chemical and physical treatments”) have been distributed to the class consisting of mainly sheeple and “tools”, (honestly, though, “tool” implies that they have some use, which they clearly do not) I begin to ask reasonable, legitimate questions to futilely better my understanding of the material despite the teacher’s curriculum effectively sabotaging my ability to do so. My classmates do not find my insight or effort to learn valuable and respond with a grand show of groans, sighs, eye rolls, and desperate cries of “Why do you have to get so technical?” and “There he goes again.” I truly think I’ve classically conditioned them Pavlov-style. Whenever I raise my hand in class or start to speak, the aggressive assertion of stupidity begins. The main difference between Pavlov’s experiment and mine is that the dumbfucks in my class have been drooling long before the process begins and continue to afterward.

The man's mullet/mustache say more than his sign ever had to

Today was especially bad. The teacher tried her very best to make an analogy, which was cute. I mean cute in a “Aw, look, that three-year-old tried to make a model of the Sears Tower out of wet macaroni!” way. She was trying to illustrate the principle of framing, where the phrasing of two effectively identical statements can differentiate them in terms of their effect on the audience. In the textbook, the example given was “A cut of meat is more effectively sold with the label ‘90% lean’ than ‘10% fat’.” Personally, I thought this was fairly straightforward and didn’t require further demonstration, but I mustn’t editorialize so much. The ANALogy that my teacher concocted went this way, “Question one: Would you rather receive $10,000 guaranteed on the spot or have a 50% chance of receiving $20,000?” At this point I took the opportunity to ask, “What’s the other 50%?” Cue the groans and eye-rolls. Naturally, the teacher did not comprehend my query, requiring me to elaborate, “Well, you said there was a 50% chance we would get 20 grand, but what’s the other 50%? Get no money? Get a different amount of money? Lose money? The risk isn’t defined well, and the answer is essential to fully assess the situation.”

I was about to call this maneuver in

She ignored my valid question, leaving it to suffer the reply of the masses and moved on. “Question two: Would you rather lose $10,000 guaranteed or have a 50% chance of losing $20,000?” Rather than rehash the “50%” issue, I tried to slip through the rest of the period as painlessly as possible. But when the teacher had the gall to continue, “You see, those questions are basically saying the same thing, just worded different (yes, different.)” I lost my shit right then and there. “Not really, in one you stand to gain money and in the other you stand to lose it. Those are opposite situations.” Cue groans and eye-rolls from the peanut gallery once more. She returns with expert reiteration, “But actually, depending on how you look at it, they’re the same.” I took the gloves off. “Let me break this down for you. Let’s say you start with zero dollars. In the first scenario, your options are to gain 10 grand, gain 20, or gain zero. In the second, you could lose ten, lose twenty, or lose zero. Since addition and subtraction are not the same thing, that analogy doesn’t accurately represent the same concept as in the book and was incompletely formulated.”

For an instant, I was ninja helicopter Barack

Additionally, upon reflection with one of my friends, I should have continued by asking “Would you like to gain a punch in the face or lose a punch in the face?” Either answer would warrant the punch in the face she so richly deserved, and I’d be satisfied. Unfortunately, it didn’t end like that. Instead, my plea for reason was Spartan-kicked into oblivion by the dogshit-caked pedestrian foot of aggressive ignorance. Not to mention that once this ordeal was over, the girl sitting next to me continued to troll hard by passing me post-it notes with Langston Hughes quotes and repeatedly looking at me and laughing. In conclusion, (troll to all English teachers) I’m switching classes.


CRYM- Off the Spectrum exclusive preview

Looks like your boy CRYM decided to make a real mixtape, forget that Garageband sh*t. Listen here, but be warned: I’m white.

White People Do Hip-Hop

So…yeah. The 80’s and early 90’s were a crazy time. Crack just came about hardcore, Kris Kross had niggas wearing clothes backwards which meant taking your pants damn near all the way off just to pee, Vanilla Ice got hung by his ankles off of a balcony by Suge, Fresh Prince had that one song, and this shit right here:

Is it just me, or does she seem like a ballerina who just got finished watching Krush Groove and decided she was going to make an instructional video?

The best part is when she says, “People ask, what will I do if hip-hop goes out of style? Hip-hop isn’t a fad, it’s a mindset.” Well she hit that on the head, but let me tell you, if what she put on her video is her mindset, she will be teaching that kind of hip-hop in Buzzard Nuts, Arkansas to people who don’t know better.

The Tale of Pa’ll Paul (Do not read if you are a conventionally ‘good’ person!)

The summer of 2010, I learned a lot about people, myself included. It was my seventh summer attending Camp Chi (which now serves to me as an acronym for “Crappy Hebrew Institution”), and I expected a laid-back four weeks of doing whatever the fuck I wanted whenever the fuck I wanted, as I had the year before. However, thanks to a trifeekta of Judaism, smelly morality-infused administration, and newly instated blocked mandatory programming, I was denied that privilege.

The primary source of my summer misfortune was a cancer named Jeremy. Jeremy was on the high-functioning (relatively speaking) end of the autism spectrum, so while he could speak intelligibly and control his actions, he wielded an impenetrable shield of moral sympathy which exonerated him from any blame for anything he did. Equipped with this massive boon, an equally massive 250lb (or as he would put it, “I’m only toounderdtwennyfivepounss”) frame, and all the confidence his big ol’ straining heart could muster, Jeremy soon became as intolerable of a burden on my whole cabin as he must have been for his parents to unleash him on the Chi premises. Like King Midas with a touch of shit, Jeremy (pictured below) proceeded to ruin everything.

Every meal, two people were selected from each cabin to refill what are essentially small serving troughs of food when it ran out, whereas in the past, whoever finished the last of the food would go get more. Chi administration deemed this procedure unfair to fat fuckers and banned the “kill it, fill it” rule, as it was so called. This meant that every single meal, Jeremy would ravage the serving bowl continuously, leaving two cabin mates on their feet the whole meal. In a single day, Jeremy ate enough calories to equal the energy of a small star; Michael Phelps would be impressed. We, on the other hand, were disgusted and frustrated, but it didn’t end there.

I had bought and brought a hammock for my cabin mates and I to use as a place to relax, unwind, and hopefully hook up with bitches. Everyone in my cabin chipped in (hammocks are not cheap) except, of course, for Jeremy. Even so, he claimed that it was his to use as much as the rest of us. The hammock is now ripped in 3 places despite being made of parachute material and stained thoroughly with the greasy residue of epidermal condensation.

His personal counselor (pictured below in a brief montage in a batman costume amongst teenage girls) was of no help at all, partially due to the fact that he involved himself in a questionably sexual but unanimously inappropriate relationship with a 15-year-old girl who resembled a frog, and refused to intervene whenever Jeremy was being too overbearing, loud, obnoxious, unsanitary, defiantly nude in the cabin monopolizing of conversations with “Jeff Dunnum (Dunham)’s the best!”, etc. After I had him fired for disgusting and ineffective conduct, Jeremy’s behavior only worsened, turning from annoying to hostile and violent.

One day, he tried to drown a kid in the lake. Another, he punched a kid in the face for juice. He would incessantly ask the two kids that brought guitars if he could use them to “play ressleen muzik” (nobody was quite sure what this meant, but it entailed slapping the front of the guitar repeatedly) and sometimes take the instrument if they declined. He constantly threatened to punch people in the “bolls” if he didn’t get his way, referencing his brother in a commonly heard story, “Y’ow whuh I diddoo my brudder? I punchim innis bolls!”

Our eventually necessitated catharsis was simple and fairly harmless. On a field trip to the Mount Olympus waterpark, Jeremy bought (i.e. had someone buy him) a paddle ball, which, due to the ‘tism, he pronounced “pa’ll paul”. Naturally, we thought this was hilarious, mostly out of desperation. One day, as Jeremy futilely tried to beat his record of one consecutive hit, the cheap toy broke. In all our subversiveness, we decided to have a funeral for Pa’ll Paul, complete with a eulogy and masking tape tomb on the back of the cabin. As expected, the kikes at Chi got their tallis in a twist and reprimanded us sternly for “making fun of kids with disabilities”. It should be noted here that we got along just fine with the 3, yes, THREE other kids with special needs in our cabin.

After much dispute about the nature of morality (I smell a near future post), things settled into a comfortable routine of misbehavior and exasperated consequence. On the final night of camp, we held a traditional dedication ceremony, where kids dedicate pinecones to special parts of the summer. My “special” dedication went something like this: “I dedicate this pinecone to Carlton Clyde, (a 90’s charicature made up by the only good special needs counselor) codenames, (we codenamed every time we snuck out of the cabin to fsu) and moral subjectivity. Oh, and Paul.”

(Oh yeah, we pissed on the grave too. Yes, I am wearing a dragon bathing suit and water shoes. Now you know I mean business in not giving a fuck.)

With those final three words, I was banned from returning to Chi ever again. I left lawling all the way.