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Top ten reasons to work in journalism

19 Aug

10. The Swearing

Only in a newsroom does one get congratulated by one’s boss for using the word “fuck” during a meeting.

9. The Drinking

Newsies can drink average humans under a mesa, and newsrooms have lots of good places to nurse a hangover: Decommissioned darkrooms, for one, are cool, dark and private, and often have couches for reasons that will remain unexplored here.

8. The Sarcasm

The Fake AP Stylebook. Overheard in the Newsroom. This stuff doesn’t write itself, people. We started the whole sarcasm/irony trend before those hipsters co-opted it, and journalists remain sarcastic, lovable assholes to this day.

7. The Liberals

There’s something sweetly safe in knowing that most of your coworkers are, like you, bleeding-heart liberals.*

6. The Misanthropy

Newsroom humor, like emergency room humor, is dark. It comes from a place of finely tuned cynicism, and grants its practitioners the permission to wield dry, cutting wit at the expense of the rabble with nary a thought to the politically correct.

5. Sportswriting

I don’t like sports (except boxing, ‘course), but I love sportswriting. Oh, the action verbs! The wordplay! The ability to experiment with nigh-obscenity due to the sports’ section placement deeep inside the paper!

4. Sportswriters

For some inexplicable reason, I get along famously with sportswriters. I don’t understand their interests, but you have to love a person who can conduct an interview with a high school softball star, hammer out a lead story, and design a front page all while drinking a 40 of 211 out of a MegaGulp cup and keeping an eye on “Striptease,” streaming on the laptop brought from home.

3.The camaraderie

There’s nothing like being on a sinking ship to bring on that tingly “sense of brotherhood” feeling.

2. Schadenfreude

As a journalist, you get to be secretly, or not-so-secretly pleased when disaster strikes other people’s lives. All the better if it strikes on your news cycle. You get to say things like, “Way to die on deadline, Reagan,” or “I need to see the carnage! Find me a shot of the carnage.”

1. Grammar jokes

If this isn’t good enough reason for you, you’re probably a business analyst anyway.

* Yep, it’s true, we media types really are damn dirty pinko Jesus-hating fags. Or rather, journalists tend to have more education than the general population, and therefore wind up more liberal than the majority. Take unsubstantiated theory any way you want.

Pretty ladies are pissed off

31 Mar

According to research featured by the BBC, “pretty women anger more easily.” According to research by me, they have every right to be pissed off.

After all, it’s pretty ladies that are warned not to dress too nicely, or behave too joyously, lest the boys be compelled to physically assault them. It’s pretty ladies who, shortly after being hired, are told that the boss only chose them because they met the minimum standards for attractiveness. And it’s pretty ladies who can’t trust the integrity of their relationships — how do they know they’re loved for themselves, when they’re told every day it’s their looks that sets them apart?

There are lots of studies out there assessing the link between attractiveness and happiness. The interesting thing about this one is that the article skewed the findings to make the anger sound like a bad thing (“uppity bitches!”), when in practice, it turns out it’s actually a good thing:

Attractive women also had higher expectations of what they deserved. … the same women were better at resolving situations in their favour.

So wait. They are good at resolving situations in their favor. They do this by using a tool called anger. Where’s the bad? My guess is the reason the journalist framed his or her story this way is because, culturally, women are supposed to be self-sacrificial martyrs.

The article explains as an afterthought that a similar link in men was found, “…but with physical strength rather than attractiveness per se.” This is interesting for two reasons:

  1. Most science-y studies sample men first and foremost, and then study women as an afterthought. This is because men are considered default humans, and results from studying them are of course always applicable to the female of the species, when she is considered at all.
  2. The only exception to the above rule is when the science-y study is about physical attractiveness. Because sexiness is solely the purview of women. They have no other identifying characteristics! Why study heart disease in women, when instead you can try to figure out which hair color is the sexiest? This study also ventures into that most noble of scientific pursuits

“…blondes rated as more attractive than brunettes and redheads.”

If we can learn anything from this study, it’s that all ladies, whether pretty by society’s standards or not, have damn good reasons to be pissed off.

So go forth and get pissed, ladies and gents. Tell me why you’re pissed, or not, in the comments.

Related posts: Boys of Facebook, Casey Johnson: Beauty, wealth won’t save you

Verbing cunnilingus: The sexy nerd’s quest

29 Mar

Ever since I first learned the word “cunnilingus,” I’ve been trying to verb it. We English-speakers can easily verb “fellatio,” right? It’s easy for folks to fellate, the sexually adventurous have fellated for years, and fellating is pretty common even in states where it’s illegal. But the only amusing vocabularic derivation of cunnilingus is a noun (albeit a fun one): cunnilinguist.

Why is this, dear readers? If it can be assumed that a language’s construction tells us most of what we need to know about a culture, then is it not true that, in our culture, fellatio is an action, whereas cunnilingus is a concept? I will bet you a whole platter of cookies that the reason that there is no verb form of cunnilingus is the same reason that there are about twice as many words for “rich” as there are for “love.”

Ponder on it, and tell me how you’d verb cunnilingus in the comments!

Related post: The Plural of Clitoris

Naked Nerds: With your clothes off, no one can tell you read Gaiman

2 Mar

What’s better than looking at scantily clad ladies? An excuse to look at scantily clad ladies! With nerd burlesque, you get to allay your naked-lady guilt by pretending to be interested in them because they like comic books. Just like you, you sweaty, doughy pale thing, you! Epic Win’s marketing gimmick has worked like a charm, and now losers like me know about Batman Burlesque, the latest in a string of ploys to get nerds to come watch strippers.

Just look! They dress up like characters from Batman, then take their clothes off! How original!

Nerd burlesque represents a glorious confluence of sophisticated horribleness. It’s meta-bad:

First, you have the gentrification of stripping that is burlesque. Burlesque is retro and involves elaborate costumery. It’s for hipsters and other college-educated white folk who like to congratulate themselves on their politically correct love for “the female enigma.” Which is a nice way of saying they like looking at boobies, just so long as they don’t have to feel dirty while doing it. And the bonus is their girlfriends get to feel good about the woman-empoweringness of it all. Although how naked performing is somehow better when it’s stylized escapes me. Sure, they’re artistes, but so are strippers. You don’t see them renting space in art houses and touting their Ivy league educations.

Add the nerd factor and you get another thing I hate: The co-opting of nerd culture by the mainstream. I liked nerdhood better when it was still an uncool subculture. Combining hot girls and nerd culture is just repackaging nerdiness as capitalism for fanboys, enabling ticket sales, and giving nerd rags a way to up the hit count.

Related Posts: Naked Women Gots Brains!, Give Me G-Strings or Give Me Death, Indie Yuppies

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