The Fish
for 8 July 1999. Updated every WEEKDAY.
Suck Staff

Joey Anuff
Joey Anuff
Editor in Chief


[Tim Cavanaugh]
Tim Cavanaugh
Special Guest Editor


Terry Colon
Terry Colon
Art Director


[the fixin' pixie... ]
Emily Hobson
Production Manager
& Rhythm Guitar


Heather Havrilesky
Heather Havrilesky
Senior Editor


[Ian Connelly]
Ian Connelly
Marketing Manager


[Brian Forsyth]
Brian Forsyth
Production Editor
& Pool Monitor


[Copy Edit]
Erica Gies
Merrill Gillaspy

Copy Editors

Suck Alumni
Suck Alumni Text

Carl Steadman
Carl Steadman


Ana Marie Cox
Ana Marie Cox
Executive Editor


Sean (Duuuuude) Welch
Sean Welch


Owen Thomas
Owen Thomas
Copy Editor


T. Jay Fowler
Production Manager
& Ass Kicker


[yes, it's a plunger. i'll l
eave the rest up to your imagination ... ]
Erin Coull
Production Manager


Monte Goode
Monte Goode
Ghost in the Machine


Matt Beer
Matt Beer
Development Manager



Why do the Backstreet Boys
sing that they want it "that
way" in their song "I Want It
That Way"? What is that way?
Why are they boys who prefer
the backstreet? Is this the
same as that country music
song that asks for help
"plowing the dirt road"? Are
there other song lyrics you
can help your fans puzzle

A curiously strong


I'm not sure about that way,
or, uh, that one, Tyler.
There are certainly other
lyrics I can help my fans
plow — er, puzzle
through. In fact, I just
heard "Closer to Fine" on
G105, a delightfully
unpredictable yet predictably
cheesy pop station in Durham,
North Carolina. I got stuck on
these lyrics: "I spent four
years prostate to the higher
mind, got my paper and I was
free!" I suddenly realized she
meant she had prostate cancer
in a former life until a skilled
medical doctor removed the
tumor or whatever (in medical
lingo known as giving the
patient her papers, as in,
her walking papers)! It all
came together, all at once!

Even my sweat smells dirty,


Fish With Letter Icon

Dear Polly,

I can't believe your
shameless product tie-in of
eTranslate in the 23 June
1999 Filler. I mean, it's bad
enough Suck is marked up like
a fucking race car. Don't get
me wrong; we all need to make
a buck. And personally, I've
never felt selling out is
necessarily bad per se, but
the fact that you wrote your
entire Filler around the need
to promote some company that
slipped you this week's beer
money means your once-quality
writing suffers, which in
turn means all your loyal
readers suffer along with it.
This incident has vanquished
the last flame of idealism
left in my young, frail mind.
Following Suck's promotional
trend to its logical
conclusion, I expect to
return to the site five years
from now and find nothing but
a big Nike swoosh.

Waiting anxiously for Suck's

Owen Li

I've always thought it would
be cool to do a cartoon in
Japanese since, you know, I
have this Keroppi wallet I
really like and I've always
liked sushi a lot, and my old
roommate Saren Sakurai was
(and still is) half-Japanese.
But my dream seemed
impossible until a good
friend of mine, Jon, launched
eTranslate. I had my doubts
about turning to Jon for my
translation needs, but he
told me eTranslate is the
Internet's Leading
Translation Service. Boy, was
I impressed! My sincere
apologies if my link to
eTranslate, the Internet's
Leading Translation Service,
offends your deeply held
beliefs or chips away at your
faith in humanity in any way.

You see, Jon was my boss at
The Red Herring — he
basically got me this job by
agreeing to say I was the
copy editor there if anyone
from Suck called (see The
History of Filler
). See how
lying gets you ahead in life,
kiddies? Anyway, once again,
my sincere apologies for
undermining your values by
returning Jon's favor, Owen.
I can't tell you how sorry I
am if my mentioning the fine
people at eTranslate upsets
you or calls into question
some of your core ideologies.
C'est la vie! (If you don't
understand that last part,
that's French ... for an
accurate, affordable
translation, check out
eTranslate, the Internet's
Leading Translation Service.)

Thanks for writing!


Fish With Letter Icon

Subject: Terry's Obsession

I think Terry Colon might be
growing obsessive about you,
Polly. When you mentioned in
your column that Terry is
kind in his drawing of you, I
began to wonder if he was
always so kind. So I went
back to look at older
drawings of you in Suck.

First, the Heather Havrilesky
picture on the Fish page is
downright plain. You could be
a longhaired boy jumping up
and down.

Then in a November 1996
Filler, you were drawn in a
less plain fashion, though
still with straight hair, an
empty look, featureless
clothing, and a squiggle for
a chin.

By March 1997 your hair
became more detailed, your
eyes more expressive, and
your body gained a female

Come October 1998, you
have the ponytail and
your clothes start to get
details like buttons and

Now, in mid-1999, your
hairstyle is much more
dramatic, your shape is much
fuller — nearly
voluptuous — and your
chin is actually a feature on
your head beyond a simple

Compare this to Joey, who has
remained a hunchbacked
Quasimodo in the black
sweater since Day One.

What conclusions should we
"draw" from this?

Looking forward to many more
Wednesday Fillers,

John MacW

Well, that one's easy. I'm
getting more and more
beautiful, while Joey remains
hideously ugly. Next question?

Speaking of drawing
conclusions, consider
stepping away from your
computer and taking a little
stroll in the sunshine. How
do you think my eyes got so
expressive overnight?

Well, OK, it was the drugs.

Oh well. Forget it. In fact,
stay right where you are. And
while you're there, maybe you
should check out eTranslate.

Many features on my head,


Fish With Letter Icon

Hit & Run

Dear Sucksters,

First off, I have to say the
Suck skin is a winner. What
more would I like to see upon
starting up my browser, set to
go to my Lycos sticky portal,
than an ugly, green-and-yellow
theme replete with fish,
barrel, and smoking gun?
Nothing more, thank you. Too
bad none of you were on the
design team. Then it could
have been a really great
product. Terry Colon would
have done wonders, anyway.

Hit & Run No. CLXXV was, to
say the least, hit and miss.
Please, feel free to ridicule
the creator of the universe.
God must be pissed at you. To
be serious (and by serious I
don't mean Suck's traditional
mindless and biting
social commentary), your article
was way off. Regardless of
whether you believe in God or
not, Suckers (er, Sucksters),
you cannot deny the fact that
contained in the Bible is a
clear guide to right and
wrong and that is the Ten
Commandments. OK, so you
ignore the first four (if you
don't believe in the whole
God thing): no other god but
God, don't worship idols,
don't curse with the Lord's
name [keep the sabbath
holy — ed.
]. What you
have left are some easy-to-
understand statements of right
and wrong. Honor your parents
(not obey, honor), don't
kill, don't cheat on your
wife/husband, don't steal,
don't lie, and don't covet
your friends' stuff. These are
pretty good guidelines to me.
So there are some strange
things like kill all witches
(Exodus 22:18) and three
pages of animal property laws
— don't cook a young goat
in its mother's milk (Exodus
23:17). But these are
the exceptions. Who knows
what witches were 3,000 years
ago? Maybe they were serial
killers. And maybe animal
property was a hot issue. And
the goat thing — who knows?
But then there are the good
things: Don't take bribes,
don't charge interest for
loans (bankers hate that
one), don't oppress foreigners,
return to an enemy what property
is his, etc. What about
the Ten Commandments in
school? It worked 50 years
ago. No school shootings
then; just the end of one war
and the beginning of another.
Let's put the Bible back in
school. At least the kids
will have something to talk

Nick Leali

Four out of the 10 are rules
we should ignore just so we
can impart some clear guides
to the few stragglers who
haven't yet figured out that
murder, theft, lying, and
adultery are frowned on in
polite society? Sixty percent
is a failing grade, even in
American public schools.

As noted by Matt Drudge (and
unfortunately not picked up
by anybody else), the
bloodiest school massacre in
American history took place
during the 1920s. You'd
better try again.


Fish With Letter Icon

Dear Suck,

It was kind of nice to see
Suck get shot down by the
legal counsel for a Bible
organization. I thought you
took the fall with some
grace, swallowing your pride
and accepting that
self-righteous, predictable,
smugly "ironic" prose usually
is empty and ridiculous.
Thanks for your implicit
admission (however reluctant)
that having the right to
endorse religious values
doesn't neccesarily mean
we'll all be forced to nail
ourselves to fucking crosses.

A faithful reader,

Claire Barliant

Maybe not, but your cutesy
language about "the right to
endorse religious values" has
nothing to do with Congress
singling out a specific piece
of religious dogma for
approval — a pretty clear
violation of the First
Amendment rule that Congress
can't establish a state
religion and the reason why
this feel-good measure will
undoubtedly be shot down by
the Supreme Court. It's a
point I would have brought up
with my pal Eidsmoe if I had
seen any potential for comedy
coming out of it.

Empty and ridiculous,


Fish With Letter Icon
Dateline: Fashion Front '99

I enjoyed your acidic article
on armband accessories. But
it does you no credit to
criticize Michael Moore for
sporting a bit of extra
paunch; that's pretty petty
considering all the cool
stuff he's done. It's like
(though perhaps less extreme
than) making fun of Stephen
Hawking's inability to run
the marathon.

Mark Ambachtsheer

Don't miss the obvious: Being
jealous of Mike's many
successes and unable to
compete artistically, I
chose instead to attack via
the soft underbelly. The pettier
the better. Great idea about
my favorite mush-mouthed
Poindexter Stephen "E = mc2
mmmmphhhuhhgghhhh" Hawking:
Mind if I steal it?

Chris Kassel

Fish With Letter Icon

"... an emotional roller coaster
ride ..."

I wish it were all true. (You
did make that up, right?)


Carl Pelletier

So a little artistic license
was taken here and there:
Rushdie's inscription was
actually in Aramaic not
Farsi; Camille's notebook was
Dior not Versolato; and the
runway explosion was caused
by Jackie Chan's brain
exploding as he attempted to
pronounce the letter r. Oh,
and the celebrity names were

Chris Kassel

Fish With Letter Icon


It's a little odd that Suck
would declare Mark Leyner on
his way out in '98 and then
turn around and publish
"Dateline: Fashion Front '99"
— a column that seems,
IMHO, to owe so much to Tooth
Imprints on a Corndog,
et al.
Is journalistic absurdism on
its way back in, or are you
being fashionably unhip?

And just what color armband
would I wear to support it?

Ryan Scharer

Don't know what today's piece
reminded you of, but we stand
by our Leyner deathwatch. Did
you see his new piece in Joe
mag? There's a guy who
desperately needs a laugh

Yr pal,


Fish With Letter Icon

 The Shit
Left for Dead in Malaysia, Neil Hamburger, Drag City, 1999
The Pyrotechnic Insanitarium: American Culture on the Brink, Mark Dery, Grove/Atlantic, 1999
Crazy from the Heat, David Lee Roth, Hyperion, 1998
Keep It Like a Secret, Built to Spill, WEA/Warner Brothers, 1999
Abbott's Pizza Company, near the corner of Abbott-Kinney and California, Venice Beach, Los Angeles (delivery hours limited)
Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Pink Floyd, CD remaster, EMI 1994
Motorhead, CD remasters, all
Det Som Engang Var, Burzum, Misanthropy, 1998
Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park, Nashville, Tennessee
A History of the Modern Fact, Mary Poovey, University of Chicago Press, 1998
V., Thomas Pynchon, HarperCollins Publishers, 1999
The Coffee Mill, Emeq Refaim, Jerusalem, Israel
The Salesman and Bernadette, Vic Chesnutt, Capricorn Records, 1998
Good Morning Spider, Sparklehorse, Cema/Capitol, 1999
Third Floor, Anderson Building, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

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