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Stick Men

Actual comments from the NHL broadcasting booth, proving, once again, that hockey is the most macho of sports

"Cheechoo had both hands on his stick and was just jamming."

"Mike Ricci was surprised and couldn’t get his stick on the ice."

"When he gets that puck on his stick, he’s thinking of putting it just one place."

"The shaft of Kiprusoff’s stick was wedged between his legs."

"Jason Marshall got his stick in before he fell down and
blocked it."

"Domi poked Marcus Ragnarrson with his stick."

"Primeau went into the middle of the ice with his stick down."

"Loose puck picked up as it went off Stillman’s stick."

"Mike Rathje caught him with his stick as he was going by him."

"Willie Niemenen with some tremendous stick work!"

—Richard Bellikoff

9 Reasons To Bring Back Charm School for Celebrities
By Margy Rochlin

"What can I say? I’m Curious George . . ."

Judd Nelson, after I discovered that he’d dumped out my purse while I’d gone to retrieve fresh batteries and was examining the contents

Photo by Stacy Kravitz

"No, I haven’t read the article yet. But friends of mine have."

Julie Kavner, at the end of two screechy, expletive-laced telephone calls from her complaining about a flattering magazine profile I’d written about her

An extended middle finger.

Shannen Doherty, informing me how she will signal to me that I can talk to her . . . after keeping me waiting two days for an interview on the set of Satan’s School for Girls in Montreal, Canada

"Ah nevah discuss such unpleasantness!"

—a hissing Dixie Carter, when asked to elaborate on her repeated references to "the unpleasantness" surrounding her Designing Women co-star Delta Burke

"Ah ink ‘Ort Uts’ and ‘Anya On Orty Econ Eet’ ave e ar istic edibility."

Julianne Moore, answering a question while flossing her teeth

"It never OCCURRED TO ME FOR A SECOND. I mean, how TRIVIAL, how FACILE. That one is only for the most facile mind. What would a drag queen tell me about GARLAND? How’s that going to help me as an ACTRESS? No. No. The answer is NO."

—an irritated Judy Davis, when asked if she’d watched Garland -impersonators as part of her research for the TV movie Life With Judy Garland: Me And My Shadows

"I have to go now. I have a really bad case of the flu."

Scarlett Johanssen, after speaking to me for 15 minutes while — inexplicably — holding my hands in her hands

"That’s a real smart-alecky magazine you work for . . . That’s a -stupid question."

Lyle Lovett, when he wasn’t furiously scowling or not answering questions altogether

"Yes, that is a rifle."

Val Kilmer

9 Tips For Surviving The Holidays At Your Republican Parents’ Home

By Kerry Madden

1. When you arrive and the first thing you see is a beaming portrait of Laura and W on their fridge next to a schedule of Masses at the Mission, look away, smile brightly and remember the deep breathing you learned in yoga. When no one is looking, cover with the kids’ new school pictures.

2. When your mother tells you the thing she really admires and finds so clever about Bill O’Reilly is that you can’t tell what he is — a Democrat, a Republican, a Liberal — keep the chopping knife steady, focus on the onions and garlic or the gentle rolling of pie dough. Do not make eye contact.

3. When your father screams, "Just because Osama bin Laden rides a camel doesn’t mean I have to . . . ," jot down notes for new play Republican Father.

4. When you notice parents’ library consists of Who Moved My Cheese?; How To Talk to a Liberal; Deliver Us From Evil: Defeating Terrorism, Despotism, and Liberalism; and every one of O’Reilly’s books, do not engage in a lively discussion of literature. Go to box wine; drink liberally.

5. When your father says, "All Muslims hate us" and "Strike them before they strike us" or "It’s the insurgents killing the Iraqi people, not the American soldiers!" or "You swinging Liberals, it’s all the same with you! You live in a vacuum!," remember when he didn’t used to be this way, when all he cared about was being a football coach and kicking Notre Dame’s Irish ass. Smile brightly (again) and top yourself up at the wine box.

6. When buzzwords like "vouchers," "accountability" and "all that wasted, dead talent from aborted babies" zing through the air, go check your e-mail. Or fantasize about Benicio Del Toro and wonder what he is doing for the holidays.

7. If your mother asks you to take both Labradors to church for a "blessing of the animals" by Father Malloy, say yes. Don’t forget movie listings.

8. When the talk turns to politics during dinner, say, "How about that Boston Babe Ruth curse lifting?" or "Anyone see Ray yet?" If that fails, turn up Frank Sinatra CD. Loud.

9. When the talk turns to politics over dessert, do not threaten to leave early if it doesn’t stop. Don’t have a breakdown and scream, "WHEN DID THIS HAPPEN?!!" Just don’t. After all, it’s the holidays.

8 Hollywood Techniques for Breaking Up With the One You No Longer Love

By Flint Wainess and Anna Jane Grossman

1. The Hugh Grant. If you’re dating someone truly fabulous, like Elizabeth Hurley, but still want to end the relationship, you’re going to have to do something really dramatic. Sleeping with a hooker can be ideal. Of course, this must be planned carefully, since you not only must find and court a hooker, but you must also get caught in the act. And if you’re not a successful film and television actor, your employer may frown on such behavior, or may ask for the hooker’s number.

2. The Anne Heche. The most difficult part of a breakup can be trying to remain friends. If that’s what you’re after, sample The Anne Heche. It’s simple: Tell your lover, "You’re great, but I’m not attracted to your gender anymore." They can’t help but tell you it’s okay if you’re gay, or straight, or whatever, and remain friends through this confusing process. The Anne Heche, Version 2: "It’s not you, it’s . . . these crazy voices in my head."

3. The Billy Crudup. Step one: Get married. Step two: Knock her up. Step three: Fall in love with co-star of latest poorly thought-out indie pic. Step four: Wait until wife is about to go into labor. Step five: Run, run, run! Amazingly, the baby might be named after you anyway.

4. The Mrs. Jerry Seinfeld. In the entertainment industry, you can never be too skinny or too rich. So, if you feel that your current spouse or lover doesn’t have a big-enough bank account, all you need to do is tell them you are leaving them for someone richer. They’ll understand, since they would do the same to you. If you live near the creator of Desperate Housewives, look out. He’s coming for your woman.

5. The Michael Eisner. Men break up too, dammit, and when they do, there’s no better way to say "Goodbye, don’t ever call again" than butt-loads of cash. Sure, your ex will still feel the sting of the breakup, and will later accuse you and the "gay mafia" of ruining his chances at future relationships. But then he’ll remember the money, the beautiful, beautiful money (mmmm money), and he’ll get over you.

6. The Kirsten Dunst. You want out of your relationship, but your boyfriend is, like, totally dreamy and smart and the star of such films as Donnie Darko and The Day After Tomorrow (and the inevitable sequel, Two Days After Tomorrow). So unless you have a good reason for breaking it off, people might begin to question whether you’re sleeping with Tobey Maguire. Fortunately, you’ve found that good reason. It’s called excessive drinking and dancing like a moronic teenager. Party the night away, every night, on Hollywood Boulevard, and then tell the world that Mr. Likes To Stay Home and Read can’t keep up with your booty-shaking.

7. The Britney Spilton. So you’re incredibly wealthy white trash, and you need to shake off that annoying boyfriend/backup dancer. Oh, do we have an unconventional breakup method for you: Marry the loser! Ideally, this should happen in Las Vegas, and you should wear a trucker hat during the ceremony. After a night of raucous, unsafe sex — What the hey! You’re married! — announce that you must get an annulment because your people don’t approve of you marrying while sloshed. "It’s not you, it’s . . . my publicist." After the annulment, you’ll never see that deadbeat again.

8. The Phil Spector. Not recommended.

Exile From Bushville: 8 Spots To Spend the Next Four Years

1. Canada. Gay marriage, no language difficulties (certain voo-wels excepted), universal health care and the first union-approved Wal-Mart on the planet. Go to singles Web site and get hitched to a progressive Canuck today.

2. Mexico. Barring the repeal of NAFTA or catastrophic climate change on the scale of The Day After Tomorrow, our southern neighbor’s border remains open, so long as you make $1,500 a month or can invest $160,000 in the local economy. You still can’t own beachfront property in your own name, but hey, Yanqui, there are always ways around that.

3. Belize. Call it the Costa Rica of the ’00s. Under a recently introduced gringo residency program, you can live out the rest of your days in this tax haven without a hitch, just so long as you generate $24,000 a year in outside income and don’t mind sharing the beach with the IRS’s Most Wanted.

4. Australia. The Land Down Under ranked second on the U.N.’s 2001 Human Development index, offers universal health care and allows citizenship after only two years of residency. So what if it just re-elected ultraconservative PM John Howard? Go ahead and throw another American passport on the barbie.

5. Bhutan. Southeast Asia’s answer to Santa Monica, this Buddhist kingdom guides its policy by a Gross National Happiness index, bans cigarettes and most logging, allows only 6,000 tourists a year, designates archery its national sport, and requires all its male citizens to wear bathrobes. The only downside is the $200-a-day accommodations package.

6. France. Don’t believe the anti-Semitism-tolerating surrender-monkey hype. The number of hate crimes in France actually decreased last year, and the French Foreign Legion is still seeking U.S. recruits with shady pasts, no questions asked.

7. Thailand. You’ll need to make frequent visa runs, and to safely buy property you’ll have to form a limited-liability corporation or marry a Thai. Still, polls indicate the Land of Smiles has the second highest number of holidays on the planet and the highest rate of sexual satisfaction. And that’s just among locals.

8. Palau. Under a Compact of Free Association, this South Pacific scuba mecca has no political parties or leaders, and welcomes our country’s nuclear subs and pacifist citizens equally. Read writer Stephen Elliott’s digital postcards from self-imposed exile:

—Justin Clark

Words’ Worth
Current doublespeak and the 100th anniversary of empathy
By Greg Burk

We twist words, then they twist us. For example, 2004 marked the 100th anniversary of empathy, a word that, like many others, has spun into a meaning not originally intended — a nearly opposite meaning, in fact.

The coiner was even an opposite: a woman, Violet Paget, writing under a man’s name (Vernon Lee). Paget was thinking about whether, when we perceive an object, the object itself is the significant factor, or if our own way of seeing it dominates the process. Among other philosophers in the late 19th century, Immanuel Kant figured that we ourselves bring ugliness or beauty to a thing by projecting our own frameworks. Paget expressed this by translating the German Einfühlung (one-feeling) as empathy, drawn from the Greek pathos (experience).

So empathy originally connoted solipsism; we show empathy when we invest objects or people with our own experience. Today, though, the American Heritage Dictionary’s first definition is "identification with and understanding of another’s situation, feelings and motives" — it’s the other guy who motivates us.

In numerous instances this year, the Bush administration’s propagandists altered words’ meanings to advance political goals. It’s a skill.

FREEDOM Freedom is what we want, the world wants, the Iraqi people want. Too bad: In order to give people freedom, we have to take away their freedom — by making ourselves at home in their country, say, or by passing the Patriot Act.

DEMOCRACY The dictionary says democracy is "government by the people" and "majority rule," but such definitions were of little interest to George W. or Jeb during the 2000 presidential election. Since democracy is a positive buzzword, though, it comes in handy when colonizing a strategic and industrial target, even if a democracy already exists there. (Flashback: In the 1980s, W.’s father, then vice president, was instrumental in hiring "freedom fighters" to attempt overthrow of the democratic, though not democratically elected, Nicaraguan government of Daniel Ortega, who was later voted out of office.) Don’t forget, when you stage a "democratic election" with a pre-anointed candidate in an invaded nation, you have to make sure that the friendliest segment of the population will be the only portion allowed to vote.

TYRANT Previously, of course, Iraq did not have a real democracy; it had a "brutal tyrant." The dictionary defines tyrant as "an absolute ruler who governs without restrictions" — the kind of leader more desirable in some situations, obviously, than in others.

VICTORY In order to attain freedom and democracy, we had to achieve military victory — "mission accomplished." No doubt victory in the War on Terror is similarly inevitable.

BLITZKRIEG The Bush media eagles chose the same word to describe the invasion of Iraq that Goebbels chose to describe Germany’s 1939 methodology in Poland. Blitz is a flash, as of lightning; Krieg, or "war," derives from an Old High German word meaning stubbornness.

COALITION We couldn’t have done it without our "coalition," including, Bush emphasized repeatedly during the 2004 presidential debates, Poland. The United States has provided over 90 percent of the occupying troops and nearly all the money.

INSURGENTS An insurgent is "one who revolts against civil authority." Such authority being . . . ?

CORRUPTION At the recent Asia-Pacific Economic Forum in Santiago, Chile, Bush said the USA would be ready to help any nation that was willing to resist "corruption." At the time, his party’s majority leader, Tom DeLay, was under threat of prosecution for illegal campaign contributions, and the Republicans had disabled a regulation that would have prevented DeLay from serving if indicted.

EMPATHY It would appear that in one instance only, that of the word empathy, the current administration has held fast to the original meaning: attributing to others one’s own feelings, rather than understanding others’ situation. If you’re looking to Bushites for more fundamental definitions, though, you’ll still find that war is peace, freedom is slavery, and ignorance is strength.


Random Acts of Stupidity
13 Sucky Events Since November 2

1. National Guard celebrates Bush election victory by strafing a New Jersey intermediate school.

2. Donald Rumsfeld begins signing Iraq-war condolence letters with an Autopen.

3. Taco Bell TV ads use Cuban revolutionary anthem "Guantanamera."

4. White House declares war on salmon by rolling back protected habitats in California and Pacific Northwest.

5. Congressional Republicans change party rule barring indicted members from leadership roles, allowing Tom DeLay to continue as House majority leader while under criminal investigation in Texas.

6. The White House admits that the president’s plan to bankrupt America by privatizing Social Security could cost taxpayers at least $1 trillion.

7. Congress passes intelligence bill that will create an all-powerful spy czar, institute national ID cards and expand federal wiretapping activities.

8. Following an NPR exposé, the Department of Homeland Security says it will stop the use of attack dogs to harass detainees in its immigrant holding centers — but not right away.

9. Congress takes back $1 billion from the Children’s Health Insurance Program, removing 200,000 low-income children from coverage.

10. Congressman Henry Waxman reveals that American teens are told by federally funded abstinence-only sex-ed programs that, among other things, a 43-day fetus is a thinking person, that women who have had an abortion are more prone to suicide and that condoms fail to prevent HIV infection a third of the time during straight sex.

11–13. Philadelphia cops handcuff and arrest a 10-year-old girl for bringing scissors to school, while a Florida cop shoots an uncooperative 6-year-old with a 50,000-volt Taser. At LAX a 78-year-old man is Tasered while arguing with airport cops after his car has been impounded.

—Steven Mikulan


8 Famous People Whose Smiles Give the Willies More Than Should Be Reasonably Expected

1. Nicolas Cage. He’d be less creepy if he weren’t trying so hard to look happy/sad/angry or creepy.

2. Michael Eisner. Something about him is just so creepy.

3. Michael Ovitz. Something about him is just so creepy.

4. John Travolta. It’s not clear whether he knows who he is, and that’s creepy.

5. Jennifer Love Hewitt. Proof you can be pretty and still be creepy.

6. Catherine Zeta-Jones. Look away from the phone ads! Yikes, she’s creepy.

7. Snoop Dogg. When he sneers it’s creepy, but when he smiles it’s still creepy.

8. Paris Hilton. I’d feel sorry for her except she’s creepy.

—June Melby

Love and Hate, L.A. Style
26 Missed Connections Posted on CraigsList

• You were at McDonald’s and I working the drive through

• You blessed me on the train

• You: girl by your pool in manhattan beach. I was on the 747 that flew over

• You were that girl at Coffee Bean that one time or was it Starbucks?

• In the mosh pit at the POND

• You brought me bacon 11/26/04

• I grabbed your boobs on Sunset

• Sparks flew as I was shoved into a Grand Cherokee

• You layed on me twice and gave me fake numbers

• I don’t know why I still dream about you

• I wish we would have

• You robbed me of my innocence, and . . .

• You really hurt my feelings

• We could’ve fucked, but you got hit by a car

• I OD’d on love when I saw you OD at my party
saturday night!

• "Making out with you killed my dog"

• Andrew . . . I am wondering . . . cause the way u looking at me, r u gay?

• Looking for WOLF, painter of marine life

• A "smiley" nachos-eating canadian

• Pablo and his tamales at the 99 Cent Store

• To the HORROR who slept with my man the other night

• You: deer, me: guy in car

• My neighbor with his snooze button

• Russian man who translated an entire movie to his wife

• Dear Mr. Peepers from across the street

• Balcony masturbator on Fuller near Runyon Cyn.

—Justin Clark

6 Blogs of the Samizdat

To be perused with coffee before venturing out into the world of insanely tilted corp-media blare Most comprehensive spot for free thinking on the Web dailyKos’ guru — ’nuff said "a daily dose of snark" — the Internet’s version of Jon Stewart

Http:// — Punk rock plus lefty politik plus secular humanism is GO! Vanity Fair guy in open space Best back-and-forth forum anywhere

—Johnny Angel


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