The Fish
for 8 May 2001. Updated every WEEKDAY.
[Suck Staff]

[Tim Cavanaugh]
Tim Cavanaugh
Special Guest Editor


[Terry Colon]
Terry Colon
Art Director


[Heather Havrilesky]
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor


[Joey Anuff]
Joey Anuff

[Go to the Suck Alumni page]
Secret History

Dear Tim:  

You're going to ride this Marist hobby horse right into the sunset, aren't you? That said, it was a fine and witty piece. However, you may be starting at too late an age...the behavior described begins not in college but in almost all little boys at about the age of six. Then, as you may recall, boys invariably form clubs, consisting of one boy to be president, one to be vice president, one with a nickel for dues, and one who is not to be admitted under any circumstances. This goes on until the one who is not to be admitted loses interest, at which time it devolves into four boys with a nickel.   It would all be funny in a dry ironic way except, of course, for the agents who get killed along the way; they---having joined the majority---fail to find most of it amusing.  

Alan Kornheiser  

Don't kid yourself, Alan. I could do nothing but Mariology coverage, fill up a year's worth of Suck columns, and still not tell the whole tale. Why, we haven't even begun to discuss the "bleeding eucharist" apparitions of the Korean seeress Julia Kim, or Our Lady of Mt. Carmel's discovery of the 1986 assassination plot against Augusto Pinochet.

Now where's my nickel?


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Hey Bartel,      

Great story, though I thought Joshua Jackson had put the kebosh on Skull and Bones after making that movie about leaving Dawsons Creek.  One thing that I thought was particularly was your speculation about the sex practices of these groups being pedestrian in comparison to some of the greek, roman, or english royalty's past exploits.     All major modern cults of interest have been sexually driven: The Manson Family, Jonestown, SLA, Branch-Davidians, Solar Temple, etc. so perhaps the less inclusive secret societies of the Ivy League have found the whole concept of obscene orgies to have trickled out of their esoteric sphere and into the hands of the everyman.  So now that we don't have be skilled yachters to enjoy a little group felching and satanic ritual, the rich have reverted to a subtler more casual orgy?

just a though,


Maybe, but come on: It's supposed to be the idle rich who are so dessicated they can only get it up while wrapped in vulcanized rubber or torturing Sri Lankan boys or hitting monkeys in the head with hammers. Anything else is an inversion of the natural order. Otherwise, what's the point of trying to get rich?


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

I remembered reading the article on the Lady of Fatima and found it fascinating after reading all about the three secrets of Fatima and finding how unspectacular the third secret was.

But I was wondering if you would ever write anything on a topic I have somehow picked up, the Templars, Rosicrucians, Umberto Eco and his secret plot, theories on world conspiracies and the King of the World, and of course Holy Blood and Holy Grail, about how Jesus married Mary Magdalene and so on.

Samuel Tan

You're a man after my own heart, Samuel. Sadly, we live in a debased age, and audiences are, I'm afraid, not anxious for more stories on Marian anti-communism. Otherwise, I'd lose no time in turning Suck into the foremost clearinghouse of creepy Catholic shadow organizations — the "Marian slavery" movement of St. Louis de Montfort, the knightly orders centered on the liquefaction of the blood of San Gennaro. Nice folks, regular people just like you and me!


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Louis Freeh is not an Opus Dei member. Perhaps the confusion is from the fact that his brother was a celibate -- oblati or numerari -- Opus Dei member at one time. He no longer is though, he's married. As for Scalia, he's not a member, just attends events.

Enjoyed the piece.


Vlad Signorelli

If Louis Freeh isn't an Opus Dei member, how come he resigned on the very same day Suck blew the whistle on him? What is he hiding? I don't know!

Rereading the Newsweek article, however, I see that you are correct; at least publicly, Scalia and Freeh say they're not members. Then again, the headmistress of D.C.'s Opus Dei girls school says "We’re not shrouded in something weird," so clearly they are practiced liars.


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Dear BarTel,

What is it about espionage that so completely captures a boy's spirit? Is it the secrecy? The idea that by remaining unseen, anonymous, and observant, a powerless, terrified nebish can bring down the powerful, raise up the meek, and achieve hero status?

And what is it that allows most of us to put away our Mattel secret-agent toys (the camera that morphed into a pistol was my favorite) (and turn our own personal covert operations into overt overtures to the people we truly want to impress--women), but keeps in its clutches a tiny stunted few? Or, in other words, what allows most of us go on to become Walter Mittys while a few, like Hanssen, are left behind like 99-less Maxwell Smarts?

I don't know the answer. But I truly believe such developmental issues are at the root of many such pathologies.

Remarkable story, and a good call remarking on it.

Richard Banks

This may be why Hanssen is so particularly embarrassing to his colleagues — the fact that he was so into it. To have somebody on the inside who still retains all the doofus wonderment of a fanboy is a professional's worst nightmare, the entire charade being posited on some idea of cool professionalism.


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Great article today! I can't believe Priscilla ended up with no teeth out on the street, especially after being Stripper of the Year in Ohio. That just bums me out.

-Shill Biddingsley

Well, as our man Rosebudd Bitterdose would point out, a ho without a pimp is headed for trouble one way or another.


[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Hogan's Run

Something I found out about Hogan was that he was a laborer for 15 years on the Harbor Bridge, painting it from end to end and starting over (bridge painting, like journalism, is one of those mindless repetitive tasks that is never really completed). Australian television did a documentary on the bridge, and there Hogan was, paint brush in hand, radiating star quality. They picked him up for tourism commercials — yes, the same tourism Crocodile Dundee complains about, as if he were the griping Qantas koala, in Hogan's initial scenes in Croc Dung in Los Angeles. Though his movies are best used to punish the kids with, one can say of Hogan's hide is that at least it's all real sincere, pre-melanoma, earned toiling in the blazing sun — as opposed to the tanning-bed induced orangeness of the Hollywood fancy-boy's pelt.

Best regards,

Richard von Busack

Von B.,

I included a link in "Hogan's Run" from somebody who thinks Hogan should go back to bridge painting. Maybe you missed it.

It should be obvious that I disagree. I'd like to see Paul Hogan slip into executive and CEO roles now that he's in the autumn of his career. Put him in a Rupert Murdoch biopic. So what if doesn't look a thing like Murdoch! He should've been cast as the impresario in Moulin Rouge. He'd be great as Nicole Kidman's boss.

That orange tinge Hollywood actors have comes from tanning beds? And here I've been thinking all along that screen makeup isn't was it used to be now that people whose last name isn't Westmore or Factor are troweling it on for a living.

If you do most of your celebrity sighting from the safety of your own home — and that's really the best place for it — there's a setting on most TVs now that will correct the orange skin tone of over 90% of the actors you see. Unfortunately it also turns the sky dark gray and makes the ocean run red with blood. But it's worth it. You feel less like whatever it is you're watching is taking place in a morgue and more like it's taking place in the End Times. Which makes the whole experience more realistic.

Slotcar H.

[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

Dear Mr. Hatebath,

I hate to be that guy..... Good old mad max really isn't aussie, he's yankee? I'll spare the details but he's really american.

Thugs and kisses,

Uncle Mippy

Nor were Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce born in Australia. The two stars of L.A.Confidential came into this world at Wellington, New Zealand, and Ely, England, respectively. All three, however, came up through the Australian film industry, made their marks Down Under before hitting Hollywood, and generally sound Australian and embody an Australian-ness that however macho generally falls short of Crocodile Dundee's.

OK, Uncle Mippy, back to your failing kiddie show.

Thugs, bones and harmony,

Slotcar H.

[Mr. McFeely Speedy Delivery My Ass]

[Contacting Us]
[Contributors Index]

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Physical Strength and How to Obtain It, by Eugen Sandow
Bamboozled, A Spectacular New Film by Mr. Spike Lee
G. Beato's all-new Soundbitten
William Demarest, Sultan of Snarl, in The Lady Eve (1941), The Palm Beach Story (1942), and The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944)
George Wallace: Settin' The Woods On Fire, directed by Daniel McCabe and Paul Stekler
Bobby Darin, Darin at the Copa (Atlantic)
Shinji-San in the floating world of indeterminate duration, by Peter Richardson
American Pharaoh: Mayor Richard J. Daley: His Battle for Chicago and the Nation, by Adam Cohen and Elizabeth Taylor
Neutral Milk Hotel, In the Aeroplane Over the Sea (1996, Merge)
45, by Bill Drummond
Cliff "Ukulele Ike" Edwards, Singing in the Rain (ASV)
Do you know of stuff that doesn't actively suck? Things so good they deserve to make the Shitlist? Send your suggestions to us.
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