Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy New Year From All Of Us At The Hype

Hi, my name is Joe Leger. That's me in the picture over there - editor of The Straight Hype(TM). You may remember me from such movies as It Was Broken When I Got Here; Doctor, it Burns Where it Shouldn't Burn; and Cilantro, The Misunderstood Herb.

The New Year is upon us, and it is customary here at Hype Central to make an amusing and entertaining list of predictions. This year, however, in the spirit of "Change" that has been the credo of so many misguided North Americans as of late (ugh, I think I just threw up in my mouth a little), I shall make a list of rants that may appear to have no purpose, yet when viewed collectively by future generations, will contain within them a wisdom that defined us in deep and profound ways. So here we go...

Thoughts on the past year and the year to come:

A - Being a child born well into the Age of Reason, I don't easily fall victim to claims of malevolent auras pervading the atmosphere - that was until I read of a near-fatal airborne bovine catastrophe in Turkey. Reports are that diners at a swanky restaurant in Istanbul were nearly flattened into their karniyarik after a cow crashed through the roof of the establishment. Miraculously, no one was injured, but the cow was quite dead. Whether the cow was already on the roof at the time of the incident - and just how it got there in the first place - remains a mystery. Curiously, this appears to be a occurrence that happens with some regularity.

B - Why did Constantinople get the works? That's nobody's business but the Turks.

C - President Elect Obama will discover early in his Presidency that the war in Iraq is slightly more complex than pulling out large number of troops at will and declaring; "You sunk my battleship!"

D - Despite the continual flood of email, subpoenas, and cease and desist letters, Wolfe Blitzer will eventually see the wisdom of auctioning one of his kidneys on Ebay! in my mad "kidney for profit" scheme.

E - Israel will continue to bomb the living be-jeepers out of those who claim that Jews are descended from demons and rats, and will no longer allow radicals who have no interest in peace attack and murder their citizens. The world will continue to blame the Jews for the current situation, and international support will be sympathetic towards Islamic terrorists who wish to annihilate the Israelites. Gee! When has that happened before?

F - The Straight Hype will continue to be an unwavering and unconditional ally of Israel.

G - Best Movies of 2008 -

1 - Gone Baby Gone - A thought provoking and gripping thriller by Ben Affleck (yes, Ben Affleck) whose amazing ensemble cast and gritty reality make up for the film's less then credible ending.

2 - In Bruges - A witty and smart dark comedy starring a newly sober Colin Farrell. A true gem.

3 - Valkyrie - By god, Tom Cruise did it! Over budget and late on delivery, this movie packs a punch, despite lacking badly needed character development.

4 - Persepolis - A funny, warm, yet unflinching look at the horrors of living under the rule of Islamic extremism.

5 - Reservation Road - A little known movie and a personal favourite. Joaquin Phoenix and Mark Ruffalo are riveting. A must see.

6 - John Adams - Though this is technically an HBO mini-series, it is the finest piece of work I have ever seen. It proudly boasts a stunning cast, an amazing score, and stunning cinematography. Based David McCullough's award winning book, it is probably the most accurate and entertaining look at the Revolutionary period seen through the eyes of John Adams. This was also the lovely miss Claire's favourite oeuvre of the year.

7 - Honourable mentions - Though I was less than impressed with these two offerings, my associate editor, the lovely miss Claire (and almost everyone else) nominates both the "Dark Night" and "Iron Man" as superb examples of comic book adventures brought to the screen. Heath Ledger was electrifying as the Joker, and Robert Downey Jr. was superb as Iron Man (I agree with the latter two statements, but come on! Tony Stark performing open heart surgery in a cave in Afghanistan? This would be less irritating to me if the director wouldn't have continued to blather on about the film's "realism").

H - I really try to be nice. I conscientiously read all of my emails and respond to all questions and comments in a timely and courteous manner. My readers are important to me. They are the lifeblood of this organ. Without you, the Hype would be just another dot-com cargo cult in the wasteland of cyberspace. But somewhere, in between your family outing to the monster truck pull and your appearance on Judge Judy, you email the site and pollute my inbox with the noisy static that crams up the inner workings of your brain. Admittedly, I am a bit of an intellectual tricotteuse. It's one thing to give bitch slaps to liberals, paleo-liberals, and rabid Jacobites, but some of you people somehow manage to fall outside of the ice-cold grip of stereotype. You are the people who think music hit it's apex when Lynyrd Skynyrd recorded "Sweet home Alabama", the kind of folks who declare they'll never visit "Effigy" because it seems someone's always getting hung there. You know who you are. You buy generic soda pop and own a copy of "Wrestlemania III". You think Western Civilization reached an all-new cultural plateau when Garth Brooks broke the mold by tearing down the walls between country and rock, spawning the insipid "Country Rock" genre. I guess we should thank you for demonstrating the perils of alcohol and free Internet access at public libraries.

I - Jonah Goldberg's "Liberal Fascism" was the most thought provoking, meticulously researched and important books of 2008. It turns 50 years of conventional wisdom on it's head with it's humorous but not overly scathing indictment of the Left's cherished beliefs.

J - Most important of all is that I got engaged to the lovely miss Claire this year. My life is truly blessed.

Happy New Year from the Hype.



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