The Fish
for 22 April 1997. Updated every WEEKDAY.
 
 
Suck Staff
 

Joey Anuff
Joey Anuff
Producer

 

Terry Colon
Terry Colon
Art Director

 

Ana Marie Cox
Ana Marie Cox
Executive Editor

 

T. Jay (the man) Fowler
T. Jay Fowler
Production Manager
& Ass Kicker

 

Heather Havrilesky
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor









Suck Alumni
Suck Alumni Text
 

Carl Steadman
Carl Steadman
Co-Founder

 

Sean (Duuuuude) Welch
Sean Welch
Suckgineer

 

Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas
Copy Editor

Single Bullet-Point Theory

Good column for Friday. Wow.
This is the first Suck in a
long time that made me feel
like kicking someone's ass.
Good work, Sucksters.

<Zenarchy@aol.com>

Suck's army of grim,
gray-suited lawyers warns
that kicking someone's ass is
generally illegal, and Suck
will deny all involvement if
and when you do it. Hell,
we've never even heard of
you. Zenarchy? Doesn't ring a
bell, Sergeant. Hope you put
this sick bastard away for a
long, long time, sir.
(Canadians? You don't say!
Are they hurt badly?)

Although if you do decide to
lace up the ass-kicking
boots, we might be able to
provide a few good names.
Quietly, of course.

Thanks for writing. Glad you
liked it.

Ambrose Beers

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Great articulation of
everything I've been
screaming for a decade. Have
been a reporter since 1989,
and have found the profession
and its members to be
singularly lacking the vision
to see the big picture. So
many crap stories, so little
real news. Thanks, man, for
saying perfectly how
mindlessly we allow the
fucked-up morality play to
filter into our homes ...
willingly and with great
abandon.

It's as if O. J. should mean
something to me. Don't even
get me started on the Jon
Bonet Ramsey debacle we are
forced to witness here in
Colorado. There's no more
justice, and we don't care
any more as long as the
actors look good and their
breath smells fresh.

Lisa Johnson
<lisa@planetcity.com>

Ahh, Lisa. You know the pain
firsthand. Fascinating, isn't
it, the amount of total
cluelessness you find in - of
all places - the (expletive
here) newsroom? Don't get me
started.

I'm in Los Angeles, by the
way, and you ought to see how
editors think out here.
("Anybody famous involved?")
The hardest part of the
reporting gig is this:
THERE'S ALMOST NOBODY LEFT
WORTH WRITING FOR. I've
walked away from a (weekly,
"alternative") newspaper and
a magazine that tarted up
copy to make it sexier*, and
have settled for freelancing
for other mags that just
can't do anything without a
celebrity angle - because
what are the options, here?

(*Once a "small handful of
problems" with internal
complaints of wrongdoing in a
city government became an
epidemic of sleaze, for
example, and the city
councilman who offered a
whistleblower ordinance to
help clean up the small set
of problems became, in the
edited copy, an embattled
crusader against the very
forces of darkness. Great.
How many times have you heard
"If it's not a fight, it's
not news"?)

The kicker is that everybody
who actually gives a shit
about real, informative,
actual news (how government
spends money, say) is
leaving, quitting, walking
away in disgust. It's a lot
like a twist on the Peter
Principle, writ large: A
shitty medium is finding the
people who can't discern, or
don't care, that the medium
is shitty.

A couple of weeks ago I was at
a party, and ended up
standing next to a reporter
who went on at great length
in a very loud voice about
covering a high-profile
shooting, and how she'd had
to fight off People magazine
and the other tabs to get a
tourist's photos, and how
much bullshit she had to
sling to get the story, and
how GREAT it was.

She'd spent the day working on
... the Cosby murder.

I remembered that I'd been
introduced as "another
reporter" around this little
circle of people that
included, you know, civilians -
nonreporter-types,
real-lifers - and was deeply
embarrassed to be in any way
connected to our "what a
great shooting" friend. I was
actually embarrassed by the
thought that anyone there
might think of me as a
reporter, something I love so
much.

Arrgghh. So much more to say
about this, but you know the
song perfectly well. When
newspapers die, the coroner's
report will have to list it
as a suicide. Have we
mentioned that reporters in
other parts of the world are
quite literally offering up
their lives to do honest,
real-life reporting? Amazing
to see something so important
thrown away so casually.

Thanks for writing.

Ambrose Beers

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Spanker

Dear Suck,

What's the deal with that
Spanker guy? You write about
him once, and he keeps
sending you angry email.
Here's my theory: Your
dismissive piece on his
copyright woes have caused
him to develop a mad crush on
you, and he's carrying out a
courtship in the only way he
knows how - by constantly
flaming you. It's kind of
flattering, in a sad and
pathetic way, don't you
think?

- S.
cheenu@princeton.edu

Oh, it isn't sad and pathetic
at all, actually. It's good
PR.

Oof. See what this business
does to your mind?

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Follow-up to Urban Elite

Subject: Hey, you lobotomized
goons!

The point?

The point is, the only
downside (that I can see) of
overpaid DINKs shooting their
wad on jazz concerts and
fancy cheese is that the cost
of that kind of stuff will
tend to rise. And that's only
a downside if you go in for
that kind of stuff. The
upside is, more money into
the arts as a whole means
(indirectly maybe) more
support for clubs like
Beanbender's, the Hotel Utah,
and Bottom of the Hill (since
you were dying to know). And
without yuppies in the
grocery store, I wouldn't be
able to make my grilled
cheese sandwiches with
Stilton and smoked Gouda when
I felt like it. And I like
having that option.

So, cost of seeing Bela Fleck
going up to $30 bad, sandwich
good. I'm willing to accept
that.

As to the two digs that you
definitely did get:

Of course I dodged naming the
"proper cultural icons," with
what I'd hoped was a visible
wink. The content-mills I
named before (the "stupid"
ones) are ones that certain
demographics are "supposed"
to like.

Here are some others:

The Velvet Underground
Neil Young
Miles Davis
Mikhail Baryshnikov
Tiger Woods
Paul Krassner

... and yet I'd rather watch
pro wrestling than be
audience to the work of any
of these guys. Just as maybe
y'all would rather watch
Melrose (or maybe I've just
alienated every last one of
you "woodheads"). The whole
point of raising one's head
out of the cultural swamp is
to find a few fronds that
suit one's personal tastes,
and as long as I'm geting my
fill, I don't care what's
sliding down your saurian
gullet.

And I do like his earlier,
funny ones.

Craig "Scenes from A. Hall"
Demel
<cdemel@altagroup.com>

Ah. The old "I like their
early stuff" mantra.

But remind us of your point
again? Oh yeah. You have your
own, special tastes, and
while it bums you out when
the costs of some stuff goes
up, it's fine with you if you
can get the cheese you want.
So, you know, it's a mixed
bag, see? And when it comes
down to it, you don't care
what anyone else likes,
'cause you think Tiger Woods
is way, way overhyped!

Fascinating. Very original.
Next?

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

Custer's Last Hand

Hello BarTel

Really enjoyed your column in
Suck today. It struck one of
my chords, so to say.

I've had some other ideas
concerning the Indians
getting back at the whiteys.
On my Web site is a cartoon
that I did back in '93, and
another idea I had (while
working on advertising for an
auto dealership) in '94. It
was common for me to get
goofball ideas while
brainstorming/copywriting/
designing commercial
projects.

I've recently been
"rightsized" out of a job at
a company that got most of
its revenue from gambling
companies. I added those
items to my site after the
firing. You should see how my
ex-boss would climb over
himself, friends, and family
to French-kiss-ass with the
casinos for their money.

http://cust2.iamerica.net/
george/redmanrev.htm

thanks,

george
<george@iamerica.net>

George,

Downsizing is a national
disgrace! We know how hard it
is to be a white guy these
days, and as part of our
effort to care for the
victims of corporate common
sense, we have put you on our
list of possible recipients
of a wagonload of Suck
blankets (small pox
vaccination highly
recommended prior to use).

BarTel

 
Fish With Letter Icon
 

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