Hard Truths: Steel Yourself

On Prom Night
Can anyone explain why they call the White House Correspondents Masturbation Dinner “Nerd Prom?” I was a nerd, and I went to prom. And I’m 150% sure it didn’t involve the coolest, funniest, and most popular actors and comedians in New York and Hollywood getting together to make fun of Republicans. In fact, isn’t this just the opposite of nerd prom? Which is just regular prom, right?

And wasn’t it funnier and more interesting when Bush was in office and some of the jokes were actually directed at him rather than his political enemies? I hate to pile on here, considering on Monday morning the journalistic hangover was palpable, with every writer who didn’t themselves attend the dinner pointing out what a fraud and charade it all is.

Oh, and did I mention the whole thing was happening quite literally within hearing and seeing distance of Baltimore getting swallowed by race riots?

Seriously, guys, maybe pick a worse time to throw a lavish party fellating the party in power and the media next year. Like, I don’t know, does MLK Day ever fall on Memorial Day and Veterans’ Day simultaneously?

On Boredom
Bruce Jenner did a candid interview with Diane Sawyer that aired this past weekend about his choice to become a woman. Wait, candid means “shamelessly planned-out cash grab,” right?

The only thing sadder than the spectacle of the Kardashian “reality” empire is the spectacle being made of the only genuine thing to come out of the show. Jenner is becoming a woman. And in post-gender America, I have to sincerely ask, who the hell cares?

There’s nothing weird about men becoming women and vice versa. It’s 2015, and I really thought we had gotten used to this sort of thing. It’s just not that fascinating.

And pardon me for pointing this out, but Jenner is a goddamn track star from 40 years ago. All other issues aside, how is it possible that anyone still cares what does or does not happen with Jenner? We have major sports in this country, and track and field is not one of them.

Seventeen million people tuned in to see Jenner say not much about not a lot of things. The whole interview could be boiled down to these bullet points: I’m becoming a woman; my family supports me; Kim has seen me in a dress before.

Honestly, the whole thing could have been done more tastefully in a tweet.

That Jenner is the only likable character ever associated with the Kardashian name is undeniable. I mean, after him, the most likable person in the Kardashian orbit would probably be OJ Simpson. So it’s great to see that people are so supportive, but does this not set us back as a society trying to normalize gender transitions? If more people tune in to see a guy announce he’s becoming a woman (just because he ran fast a long time ago and his stepdaughter has a sex tape) than tune in to watch NCIS each week, we’re not headed in the right direction.

Unless of course Mark Harmon also makes the change. Then look out, sweeps week…

On Chippiness
The Cleveland Cavaliers, anointed the heir to the Eastern Conference title, had a rough go in their elimination of the Boston Celtics this past Sunday. While they did manage to put the boys in green out of the post season, they lost power forward extraordinaire (and Oregon native) Kevin Love to a dislocated shoulder that will likely keep him out of the rest of the playoffs.

Then in retaliation for what indeed looked like a dirty play that injured Love, Cavs center Kendrick Perkins attacked the throat of Celtics center Jae Crowder, getting ejected. Then, for good measure, Cavs guard J.R. Smith made sure Crowder was done for the day by viciously spin-punching him right in the face, also earning an ejection.

Now both Smith and Perkins are staring down the barrel of significant suspensions, and the Cavs cakewalk to the finals looks more like a perilous journey.

The best part of all this chippy excitement is that we’re now going to get to see some superhuman basketball. Suddenly Lebron James is missing his A-List power forward, his enforcer, and his three-point shooting specialist. Which means he’ll have to do it all for his team to make their predestined appointment with the Spurs in the finals.

 Which means once again, violence and retribution will lead to better things for us all. And they call baseball our national pastime. Pfft.

by Sidney Reilly