janklow stars in… the local mall, which is totally not a legitimate topic for a travelogue, what the hell, man

people that know our hero janklow –and we’ll assume that this includes you, loyal reader, since odds are, if you’re one of the three people reading this, you’re really only doing so because you DO know me and there’s some lingering sense of obligation at work– can probably imagine that i do not enjoy a visit to most places populated with the lowest common denominators of humanity, or, really, any humanity. after all, i may really, really love guns and thus love gun shows, but i’ll be damned if i am not almost IMMEDIATELY annoyed with at least 50% of the people at those gun shows. and those are my people! luckily, they are able to redeem themselves in my eyes by casting pro-gun votes in elections.

anyway, a prime, prime example of a location deeming with the “average man” (and woman) not naming “Wal-Mart,” is, of course, the local mall. now i really, really do try to avoid the mall: generally when i happen to be there, i mostly notice that they’ve phased out more things like books in favor of “additional access to skinny jeans.” and let’s be honest: i worked in a food court of a mall once, and that seemed like it took about 50 years of my life away, so there might be a little bit of a grudge there. unfortunately, i managed to smash all my glasses within a span of a week or so (okay, three weeks, but the last couple of pairs were mashed on back-to-back days, whatever), and when i go to get my lenses replaced… i have to go to the mall.

but luckily, i have some sociological observations!

Israeli Dead Sea salt, i guess
i don’t care how scenic the Dead Sea is, Israel, i’m not buying your exfoliating scrubs if your salesmen are such dicks

the inexplicable nature of this insulting foreigner salesman

so your hero (again, janklow) is hustling to pick up his glasses when this salesman at one of those kiosks (i am going to presume it’s one of those that sells Israeli scrubs based on Dead Sea salts or whatever) asks him if he wants to try something to cleanse his face. now, let’s be honest: most of us don’t like being singled out from a crowd to be sold a product, and i personally am not exception. oh, and i don’t really want to become one of those guys spending good money on facial products; i’m not criticizing anyone that does, but it’s not me. at the same time, one tries not to just be an asshole to random people, even salesmen, because, you know, we’re living in a SOCIETY here. so i politely (i swear) say, no thanks, and keep walking.

now this is typically where you, as a salesman, cut your losses and move on to the next mark, right? not this Israeli dude (i base this on both his accent and his product), who proceeds to take the following inexplicable steps:

#01. politely ask “one moment” and do that thing where you reach out to give someone the IMPRESSION you’re touching their arm/shoulder, but without the actual touching that sometimes prompts a lawsuit and/or a knife in the groin;
#02. apologizes for his English, which, to be fair, wasn’t bad at all, despite his strong accent, but it’s also possible he apologized for his accent, although i could have SWORN it was the former;
#03. sets me up for the burn by asking, “do you use any products on your face?” i answer no (curse you, social contract!), and am about to turn away and keep moving, when…
#04. he hits me with the burn: “well, you should.” and then he immediately goes back to hustling his product.

now, an aggressive salesman is one thing (i do have a story about an unfunny shouting match between myself and a credit card program’s salesman got into fucking RANDOMLY) and a rude salesman is one thing –and let me note that the very concept of “rude salesman” seems pointless, since ultimately you’re supposed to be selling me your product, and i can’t see how being an asshole to ANY potential customer helps with that, but then hey, what the fuck do i know about the sales industry, right?– but a rude salesman who apologizes for his speech before talking shit? who the hell does THAT?

granted, it’s entirely possible that he really WASN’T talking shit, and that it was sort of a “here’s my throwaway advice BUT NOW I AM IMMEDIATELY GOING BACK TO WORK” type of remark… but who does THAT either? and then there’s the whole “you really had to be there to hear his tone BLAH BLAH BLAH part. so i’m taking it how i want to take it: so fucking WEIRD.

in order to counterbalance the incoming sexism, i went with an image of strong female power. YOU GO, LONG-DEAD 1940s-ERA GIRLS

what i shall refer to as “booby trap” girls

DISCLAIMER: this is probably going to get accidentally sexist, so i apologize in advance to all my sisters out there. stay strong in the face of, well, i guess me, ladies.

anyway, one thing i think we’ve all heard is that when you’re seriously dating a woman, you need to examine the condition of her mother, on the grounds that, well, to put it unkindly, that’s what you’re in store for in the future if you keep her around. it’s not 100% for obvious reasons, but you know, for mysteriously reasons like “parentage,” whatever the condition of the mother, you can see the similarities. except…

so i am at this mall and i am waiting for, i think, service on these glasses (the timing of this story is not that important) and a girl and her mother are doing some shopping right nearby. now, this girl is, to put it politely, well put together. not trying to be a creeper here (seriously), just a straight-up observation… but her mother is a goddamn TRAIN WRECK.

now, right, it’s not 100% and you could probably argue stuff like “maybe it’s her stepmother?” or “maybe it’s her beloved aunt with whom she has a mother-like relationship but shares different genes with?” or whatever… but i am going to assume, based on the overheard conversation, that they were actual mother and daughter. and to this i can only say: if some guy doesn’t scope out this mother in advance, he’s likely to find this girl to be one HELL of a booby trap when she turns 40 or so.

these goddamn kids
for the love of good, NEVER GOOGLE SEARCH “FUCKING TEENAGERS” WITH SAFESEARCH TURNED OFF. anyway, these kids are having a good time

me wanting to punch kids in the face

ultimately, i can’t do this: it’s illegal and i am way too small to not pay the ultimate price for it. but i think it definitely speaks to what age you’re at in life: at one point, the swarms of dumbass teenagers seem inexplicably cool, then they’re your peers (for better or worse), then they’re what you look back on and smile, and finally, you just want to hit them all in the face for the myriad of dumbass things you see them saying and doing. granted, i might have going directly from five years old to the latter category, but what the hell, it is what it is. DAMN KIDS!

anyway, that’ll be it for now, so, on to the next one.

seriously, i would fly the “TWO BAD NEIGHBORS” flag or banner or whatever, it’s not a joke at all

yeah, so, i have been diligently grinding away on that promised update that won’t be worth the effort BUT was forced to spend some time doing things like “wrangling a house full of hooligan dogs” and “rescuing cats that some people don’t even think exist at all, but we’re show them, because a-ha, they DO exist” … so it’s back to the old stand-by method of update creation. and i am okay with that! mostly! sort of! whatever!

Joseph Sincavage, you kind of suck
Joseph Sincavage’s Douchebaggery HQ: it’s sort of like the UN, only it just represents Americans, Nazis and the Vatican, apparently

Nazi flag is anti-Obama, not anti-Jew, says homeowner

you know… i’m going to admit there are stances you can take that sound negative (say, opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1964) but which technically, you can justify based on some inoffensive (or maybe just “less offensive”) reason(s), (say, making an argument against the Civil Rights Act based strictly on federal overreach while stressing your anti-racist credentials)… but then there is hanging a Nazi flag up in your yard and/or on your house, something that is never cool and, frankly, which we should all know is not cool. but there is an exception!

“”I respect your First Amendment rights,” a Connors Lane neighbor told Joseph Sincavage about the Nazi swastika flag hanging off the front of Sincavage’s house. “I don’t respect Nazism, but I respect your First Amendment rights,” said the neighbor.”

tangent: this neighbor is being way too nice regarding someone flying a Nazi flag. either they’re a Nazi, in which case, fuck them and their feelings, or they’re so stupid they don’t understand what it implies when they’re flying a Nazi flag off their house. and frankly, i would almost prefer if they were just straight-up Nazis (but not really, because again, fuck them).

“That episode, which took place as a reporter was suggesting that passersby could conclude that the flag flyer was anti-Jew, seemed to help Sincavage understand the suggestion.”

hooray! now this man, after having it carefully explained to him by a reporter and RANDOM NEIGHBORS, finally understands that flying a NAZI FLAG might give the impression of some degree of antisemitism. actually, though, it might be more effective to not waste the time explaining all this to Sincavage when someone could just do us all a favor and suffocate him with a pillow or something.

“”At that moment, late morning Thursday June 27, Sincavage decided to fly an Israeli flag also, “so Jewish people won’t think I’m mad at them or anything like that.” He immediately ordered one and said, “It’s on the way.””

okay, Sincavage, but here are my questions:
01. are you going to take the Nazi flag down until the Israeli flag arrives?
02. have you considered that the Nazi flag is offensive to people OTHER than Jews, even if we’re strictly speaking about “people who the Nazis actively tried to wipe out during WWII?

“The flag of Nazi Germany, which symbolizes for many race supremacy, hatred, violence and murder of Jewish people, is being flown not to convey those messages, said Sincavage, a 73-year-old U.S. Marine. He said he is flying the flag as a symbol of a totalitarian state, which he said Germany became, and which he feels the United States is becoming under President Barack Obama.”

okay, let’s say –for the sake of arguments– that i accept your sarcastic flag-flying intention: is this REALLY an effective way to make your point if you have to keep explaining it to people? it would probably be better to do some Obama-themed variation on that “TWO BAD NEIGHBORS” flag that Bush flew on that one episode of the Simpsons:

“look, just never mind. i thought the banner was pretty straightforward, but i’ll just take it down.”

…come to think of it, i would legitimately fly that flag if i had one. anyway, anyway, the point is that a flag with a shitty cartoon picture of Obama and the legend “ONE BAD PRESIDENT” would actually get your point across BETTER than flying the Nazi flag. because whatever they thought of you, people would at least know you were more about hating the president and less about wanting to see the mass murder of Jews and other minorities.

“He said he is flying the symbol of totalitarianism next to the American flag, a symbol of the U.S. Constitution, to show the contrast. Also flying on Sincavage’s house is a flag of the U.S. Marines and a flag of the Vatican.”

left unexplained: why the fuck the flag of the Vatican is flying there.

“I am going to keep flying (the Nazi flag) until Obama changes his policies, resigns or gets impeached,” Sincavage said. “I am going to stay with it on the basis of my First Amendment rights.”

look, people always go right back to that “on the basis of my First Amendment rights” thing, and that’s great, except i don’t think anyone’s saying “you don’t have the right to fly your Nazi flag.” what they’re PROBABLY saying is more along the lines of “why would you want to fly a Nazi flag if you’re not a weirdo racist creep?”

“The Stratfordite said he “didn’t realize people would take it as offensive,” and he is not a member of any type of group associated with the flag. “I have no animosity toward Jewish people,” he told The Star. “They too are being given an unfair deal by President Obama. The founder of my religion was a Jew.”


i do, however, give this guy one bonus point for the “founder of my religion” remark, as it’s better than the obligatory “some of my best friends are Jews.”

“He said that Obama told the Israelis not to attack Iran while he was running for election. Sincavage added that Iran is building nuclear weapons and has threatened to annihilate Israel, so Obama in interfering with Israel’s ability to defend itself. Sincavage does not approve of those Obama policies either. Other policies of the Obama administration that Sincavage cites as moving the U.S. toward totalitarianism include what he refers to as having regulators write laws and bypassing Congress with Executive Orders, refusing to use the word terrorists when we have terrorists here, and a general “disregard for the U.S. Constitution.””

so a lot of the usual which, to be honest, isn’t always specific enough to sound like a real argument. look, Obama may have a “general disregard for the Constitution.” but if THAT is the way you frame your argument, it’s going to sound weak every time. and if you’re the guy flying the NAZI FLAG on your house? well, you make everyone with a legitimate gripe about Obama look like a raging jackass. and since that partially includes me … damn it, Nazi flag man, knock it the fuck off.

Otávio Jordão da Silva
so it seems a LITTLE mean to make a joke like “maybe that shirt was why they killed him and defiled his remains” … and yet here we are

Brazilian soccer fans decapitate ref after he stabs, kills player

one thing i like about this story? the continual ramping-up of pure insanity. one thing i DON’T like about this story? eh, sort of a redundant headline. “after he kills player” wouldn’t have covered it? i think it might have been more interesting in a mysterious way, like, “how did he manage to kill a player? was it accidental?” anyway, there’s a story here:

“Last Sunday, an amateur soccer match in Brazil came to an unbelievably gruesome end when a referee was murdered by outraged fans. His head was then cut off and placed on a spike. The beheading was retaliation; the ref initially stabbed a player to death.”

the sad part is that until you get to the “beheading was retaliation” part, all these Americans are PROBABLY thinking, “yeah, they beheaded the guy because their team lost because that’s how they are down there!” although, in fairness, it IS in retaliation if you decapitate a guy because he called a penalty or something against your team and thus cost you the game, right? we’re just not saying what it is in retaliation FOR in this scenario, that’s all, right?

“It happened in the Maranhão region of northeastern Brazil. Thirty-year-old Josenir dos Santos Abreu approached the referee, 20-year-old Otávio Jordão da Silva (pictured above) during a match to argue a call. Abreu reportedly threw a punch at da Silva, who then took out a knife he was carrying with him during the match, and stabbed the player. Abreu died of his wounds en route to the hospital.”

now, i am not going to say it wasn’t called for to stab this player (and subsequently kill him), since i wasn’t there for the punch and, let’s be honest, a referee can definitely get killed by catching a random punch to the head while refereeing a soccer game. let’s go ahead and say there was a threat you’d be justified in responding to. still, i’m thinking i take the knife and say, “let’s cool it, okay?” instead of just going right into the murder stabs.

“Meanwhile, the player’s friends and family invaded the pitch and attacked da Silva. They reportedly tied up the referee, beat him, stoned him, lynched him, and then quartered him. When they finished, they cut off his head and placed it on a stake in the center of the field.”

so i am thinking this is one of those scenarios that the whole Anchorman-based “well, that escalated quickly” meme would come in handy for, although since i didn’t actually watch that movie, i can’t fully embrace it. but let’s note something here: Abreu (the player) died EN ROUTE TO THE HOSPITAL. which means the friends and family stormed the field, and proceeded to beat, stone and ultimately dismember the corpse of the referee only knowing that he’d merely STABBED their friend/family member. they didn’t have knowledge of his death at this point. this is so excessive!

“So far, just one man, 27-year-old Luis Moraes Souza, has been arrested for the crime, and authorities are searching for two more. Valter Costa, the chief of police in Maranhão’s town of Santa Ines, spoke in a statement. “Reports of witnesses have indicated some people that were in place at the time of the fact,” he said. “We will identify and hold accountable all those involved. A crime will never justify another. Actions like this do not collaborate with the legality of a state law.””

you think, Costa? “yeah, well, we looked it up and as it turns out, eviscerated a soccer referee is only in compliance with state law IF he’s deflowered an underage relative of yours. otherwise, we resort back to the normal judicial system we use for people who live in the real world.” OBVIOUSLY YOU DON’T JUST DISMEMBER A REFEREE JESUS CHRIST

then again, it’s Brazil and a different culture and all that, so what do i know?

…and i think that’ll do it for this week. one of these days this long-pending update will get finished, i swear.

“in the movie!” because sometimes you need to be REALLY clear about that

so here at the house of hate we try –really, really try– to not get too focused on politics and current events, although in fairness, i think we violate this all the time. ALL THE TIME. but anyway, i had this article from months ago (“Published: November 28, 2012,” as it turns out) that was pretty ridiculous, but was never actually used in an update at the time. i’m not actually sure why; i’m guessing it didn’t ever work out that it paired up with something, and so it got left behind. but given the Actual Current Events going on in Egypt right now, i think we should go ahead and make fun of it, as this may be our last time to do so.

…or, at least, before a bunch of horrible shit happens in Egypt and we’d feel really bad about continuing to make jokes about anything related to it. same difference, i suppose.

Mohamed Morsi
perhaps this update will keep things light-hearted in lieu of Morsi’s recent drama

(former) Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi holds forth on ‘Planet of the Apes

Mohamed Morsi, the engineer and Muslim Brotherhood ally who became Egypt’s first-ever democratically elected president this year and who last week sent his country’s political system into chaos by granting himself sweeping new powers, appears to hold strong views on the 1968 science fiction film “Planet of the Apes.”

so obviously, while this predates the current drama, since it happened during the whole “granting himself new powers” thing that caused a fair amount of the consternation that would lead to him getting overthrown, it’s clear that either a) Morsi legitimately believed this discussion/analogy/whatever had serious bearing on matters even during serious times, or b) Morsi was always a little bit crazy. or maybe both!

“Morsi, in a lengthy interview with Time magazine, the transcript of which Time just posted online, abruptly transitioned from discussing the U.S.-Egypt relationship to the “Planet of the Apes” movie franchise. Morsi’s point seems to be about Egypt’s need to take responsibility for its own problems. Or maybe it’s about economic self-sufficiency. Or “the role of the art.” It’s really not clear. Here’s the leader of the Arab world’s most populous nation:”

now, in fairness to Morsi, Fisher notes that “English is not Morsi’s first language, and though he studied in California for several years in the 1980s, he presumably has more important things to do right now than brush up on a foreign language. So try to give him a sympathetic reading in that regard.” and i think that’s fair. but i WOULD argue that if his point is not clear, it’s not necessarily a language problem, because this goes off the rails into some “what the fuck is this dude talking about” territory ASAP.

…also, i have to ask about the wisdom of a guy trying to make a complicated and weird analogy if there IS a language barrier he’s fighting through. wouldn’t it make more sense to keep it as simple as possible? anyway, let’s dig right into Morsi’s quote:

“I remember a movie. Which one? Planet of the Apes. The old version, not the new one. There is new one. Which is different. Not so good.”

on the one hand, as an interviewer, i would IMMEDIATELY be asking myself what the scenario is where Planet of the Fucking Apes is a good analogy for ANYTHING. admittedly, though, i am partial to Beneath the Planet of the Apes, which has the best ending of any movie, ever:

The film ends with a voice-over saying, “In one of the countless billions of galaxies in the universe, lies a medium-sized star, and one of its satellites, a green and insignificant planet, is now dead.”

ANYWAY, on the other hand, Morsi makes sure to take a shot at the remake of the Planet of the Apes, which, while i think is rated a LITTLE worse than it deserves, is no critical darling and popular to bash. so that’s a wish move on Morsi’s part.

“It’s not expressing the reality as it was the first one.”

i think i know what he means by this remark (as in, the first film was more realistic to how a “Planet of the Apes” scenario should have been, let’s say), but it’s hilariously worded since we’re talking about a science-fiction film in which Charlton Heston does battle with rifle-toting apes. or maybe that’s just me being petty, i don’t know.

“But at the end, I still remember, this is the conclusion: When the big monkey, he was head of the supreme court, I think — in the movie! — and there was a big scientist working for him, cleaning things, has been chained there.”

i do appreciate his clarifying outburst of “in the movie!” in that it’s probably meant, as Fisher notes, “perhaps he feared we might believe he was describing real-life judges – such as the Egyptian judges on strike this week to protest Morsi’s decree granting himself sweeping new powers,” so there’s kind intent there … but was anyone actually confused as to what he was talking about? he started with “the big monkey.”

“And it was the planet of the apes after the destructive act of a big war, and atomic bombs and whatever in the movie.”

let me tell you something: if you find yourself saying “atomic bombs and whatever,” it’s possible you don’t remember the movie well enough for it to serve as the basis for your anecdotes. granted, when you get through the whole thing, that’s very apparent, but i think that’s where i might have said, “ah, you know what? my English is not great and i better not keep running with this. it’s hard to phrase it like i want to.”

“And the scientist was asking him to do something, this was 30 years ago: “Don’t forget you are a monkey.” He tells him, “Don’t ask me about this dirty work.” What did the big ape, the monkey say? He said, “You’re human, you did it [to] yourself.” That’s the conclusion. Can we do something better for ourselves?”

uh… Morsi, what the fuck are you talking about?

okay, let’s parse this out: i guess the “scientist” is Charlton Heston (who’s really an astronaut, but would probably be close to a scientist on SOME level), although he never really is “cleaning things,” at least not as i recall. Heston DOES seem anti-ape (or anti-monkey, if you will; Morsi seems unclear on the distinction between apes and monkeys, or at least there’s an additional language issue there), but i don’t recall him specifically disputing knowledge about the atomic war… since, you know, it’s not clear until the end of the movie that this planet is Earth. that’s the whole surprise reveal, Morsi! also, i am guessing “the big ape, the monkey” (even more confusion of the terms now) is Doctor Xaius? maybe?

the conclusion that, as i read it, “humans are to blame for their own fuck-ups, so let’s make an effort to do better,” does seem valid, though. i give him that.

“I saw it 30 years ago.”

i’ll say this: if there’s one thing we DO know for sure about what Morsi’s saying, it’s that he saw this film 30 years ago. the fact that it’s been decades since he saw what he’s basing a currently anecdote on could NOT be more clear.

“That is the role of the art. This is the very important role of art. Gone with the Wind has been treating social problems.”

you know… this is funny, in that i think Gone With The Wind is more indicative of social problems than working to solve them, but maybe Morsi sees it differently? or is thinking of a different movie? because the book about slavery that i personally see as “treating social problems” is more Uncle Tom’s Cabin than Gone With The Wind.

“Five in Hell. That was the Arabic title. Five Americans working behind German lines and they were using primitive military devices. I think it was Charles Bronson or something like that. My hard disk still carries a few things!”

Fisher suspects that “the president of Egypt may have bit-torrented “The Dirty Dozen,” based on his description of “Five in Hell” on his hard drive,” but i am pretty sure he didn’t Google this one, because he might have found a connection to “Five For Hell,” a film in which “a bunch of oddball G.I.s whose mission is to steal the German’s secret attack plans from a villa behind enemy lines.” although, in defense of Fisher, Morsi does mention Bronson (who is clearly in the Dirty Dozen and NOT Five For Hell) and that this was an Egyptian title for an American film. so i guess we can go either way on this.

but seriously, did Morsi just admit to having an illicit copy of the film on his computer? because i seriously think he did.

anyway, Morsi’s been deposed and, while i am not sure how this is all going to work out for Egypt, it’s unlikely to be something funny which, as an ostenably humor website, is what we really care about. so we’ll see what the future holds.