RSS

Tag Archives: Bigfoot

Just Like Seein’ Bigfoot

You know how whenever anyone sees Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster or Ogopogo, they’re so freaked out that they can’t snap a decent picture of what’s obviously, definitely, not horseshit and is instead really right in front of them? So what you get is something that looks like a large, blurry man in a Bigfoot suit:

Bigfoot Classic

Or a snorkeler with a Monster-Shaped Sock Puppet:

Loch Ness Monster

Or I guess sometimes yes, they do get a decent picture of Ogopogo. Watch out, kids!

Ogopogo

Well that’s how I feel when I see a Women For Romney bumper sticker. Let me tell you something – they are OUT there. You just have to keep your eyes open. My friend Spang and I call each other when we see them – ohmygod, ohmygod, OHMYGOD! TOM! I SAW ONE!

Then we get cosmos. Other than that, we’re pretty manly.

But not the bumper sticker. I’ve never been able to get a clear picture of one, but here’s an artist’s rendition straight from my own personal Google Image files:

Women For Romney

See? It’s pink – that means chicks dig it. And some of the letters are all fancy, like a girl wrote it on her notebook, a girl who doesn’t just “like” Romney, but who “‘like’ likes” him. Sometimes they don’t even get bumper stickers, they just spray paint their whole Romney-ending name all over their car, as if they’ve already married him and his First Wife. Stephanie Meredith Romney! In a big heart, you know.

But anyway, today I saw this cryptozoological wonder cross my path:

Bigfoot2

Holy shit! Christians For Obama!

At first, I didn’t even comprehend it. Why would Christians ever vote for a guy who is not only a Muslim, but also a Satanist AND an Atheist? FROM KENYA?

I don’t know, but this guy not only did it, but he’s permanently bragging about it on his car! Who’s driving it, Mothman??

I’ll tell you, it was a spiritual experience, like looking the Abominable Snowman right in the eye across a card table, thinking, “He’s got the jack. He doesn’t have the jack. HE’S GOT THE JACK!”

Surely you can relate. Anyway, someone needs to fly me to Loch Ness or to Bigfoot Town (Canada? Seattle? I don’t know where Bigfoot lives) cause do you see how I calmly stopped texting while I was driving, and snapped a picture of the Sasquatchmobile? I’m like motherscratching Steve McQueen, baby.

Cool, now I have to go run this by some network execs, make some scratch. Don’t show anybody, blogosphere, because it’s not worth any money that way.

Bigfoot SuitNow, I know a lot of you are like, Tom, that could just be a Jesus Fish Eating A Darwin Fish bumper sticker wearing a Christians For Obama bumper sticker suit. Like when those knuckleheads said they had Bigfoot in a freezer and instantly, pre-Tom-On-Facebook, someone came to my desk to show me their Facebook page and asked me what I thought of it.

I said, “Well, shit, I’d say that’s either Bigfoot in a freezer, or it’s a Bigfoot Suit in a freezer. And since we already know there are Bigfoot suits, and since we don’t know if there’s Bigfoot, etc., etc. etc.”

Well – we’ll just have to let Science decide, and Science can tell History, and someone from Television can give me a check, is how I think this works. I’m going to get a new suit and a steak dinner, you guys stay here in case my studio check shows up.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Atlantis Without Mermaids Is Not Interesting

Wow, wouldn’t it be cool if it turned out there was really a city called Atlantis and it sank long ago and then scientists found it? 

Bet your ass it would be cool, because Atlantis is full of aliens and shrink rays and ancient, mystic secrets.  Levitation beams.  Big, robot seahorses you can ride around on.  Aquaman and his surly pals.  What a rocking party that would be.

And it’s not just me thinking that.  Atlantis is extremely popular for something with little to no basis in historical reality at all.  You bring it up on the news, and everybody’s listening.

That’s probably why every couple of years a new batch of scientists pops up in the news and says, holy crap – we found Atlantis!

Cause they know we’re always going to perk right up and say, Really?  Where?  And they’re right – that’s what we do.

Sometimes it’s in the Gulf of Mexico.  Sometimes it’s under Antarctica.  Sometimes it’s in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea.  And it’s always disappointing, because it’s always ruins.  Some blocks with coral growing on them, and not so much as a street sign.  What makes you guys so sure it’s Atlantis?

Then the answer is typically a frustrating variation of What Makes You So Sure It’s Not?  And I can’t stress this enough – that’s not the way science works.  If you guys can’t prove it’s Atlantis, then it’s not Atlantis.  Call it something else.

Imagine they’re looking for Cleveland in 2600 years and all they know is it’s by a river.  Look there’s Cleveland!  There it is again!  No wait, it’s over there!

This time it’s buried in mud in the middle of Spain (you heard ’em), probably under the plains, since in Spain that’s mainly where the rain falls.

No, really.  Not even in the ocean this time.  You guys found Spanish Pompeii and you decided that’s probably Atlantis?

Yes.  This particular incarnation of Atlantis was swamped by a tsunami, making it an even more suspicious Atlantis, the kind that decides to cash in on Tsunami Fever.  Hey, you guys are interested in Atlantis, right?  And you’re interested in tsunamis?  Well, check this out – we found it before tsunamis were all the rage, so it’s kind of an indie Atlantis.

Yeah, it’s indie all right.  Are you guys smoking crack or what?

Scientists.  Guys.  Ladies.  Gang.  Whatever.  You have to stop deciding that every city-like structure you find which isn’t sitting on a hilltop is Atlantis.

There’s not much Atlantis literature out there, you know.  Plato talked about it, 2600 years ago and said something about the Straits of Gibraltar and a rocking music scene and that it sank.  And nearly all of the remaining work on it is either Stargate: Atlantis, Aquaman comics, or it’s some kind of completely baseless, childish work of fiction.

The scientific approach favored by Atlantis hunters is, anytime someone finds a cube-shaped rock underwater off the coast, they look around and see if anything within a thousand miles could be mistaken for the Straits of Gibraltar, and then they say, Hey.  Maybe that’s Atlantis.

And you know, headlines can be nice and vague, right?  All you have to do is put in a qualifier – Unconfirmed Reports Suggest Atlantis Is Under New York City!

Or in this case, Atlantis Found, Scientist Claims!

It’s a perfectly true headline, but only because there’s really a scientist claiming it, not because the scientific community has agreed this is Atlantis.  In fact, given the six or so sentences we know about whatever Atlantis was (we know more about Xanadu and Valhalla and Hoth), I don’t see how they’re ever going to prove that any given group of ruins were once Atlantis.

Hold on – I just found Atlantis too, in my butt.  Atlantis Found, Blogger Claims!

Let me be clear.  None of you jackasses found Atlantis.  You found some other city that was destroyed by something watery.  That’s a pretty common way for cities to get destroyed, I imagine, since as far as we know, there weren’t nuclear bombs 2600 years ago.

And anyway, if you found Atlantis, and there’s not a glass dome over it, and no mermaids are swimming around in it, and there are no sea monsters, then who cares?

Seriously, guys – who the hell cares?

You’re just taking advantage of the famous name – like anytime someone finds a tooth within a hundred miles of anything Amelia Earhart flew over, same thing.  Could bone fragment belong to Amelia Earhart?

Then later, well, we don’t know.  We sort of doubt it, there are an awful lot of people.  But it COULD be!  The mystery endures!

No, it doesn’t.  It’s not a mystery.  That’s a bone fragment, and this a two thousand year old bullfighting arena or something.  If you didn’t find any Stargates or aliens or mermaids or even anything glowing green, then YOU.  DID.  NOT.  FIND.  ATLANTIS.

It’s like the Professor says – bring me a bag of Bigfoot’s droppings or shut up.  That is all.

 

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 20, 2011 in News/Commentary, Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Jerks, And Their Big, Offensive Signs

Look, when you put up a big sign with something you think on it, that’s your right and I’m all for you.  But it really makes you sound full of crap when you try to pretend that you aren’t being offensive on purpose.

After all, you’re not talking to the people who already think the same thing you put on your sign are you?  Follow my logic here – if they already think that, then they don’t need to read it off of your Brobdignagian sign.  So you’re talking to the people who don’t think whatever is on your sign, because you want them to stop thinking whatever they think, and you want them to think what’s on the sign.

I can be a real jerk sometimes, there’s no doubt about it.  But the big difference between a blog and a sign on the highway or on the side of a bus is, you don’t have to read my blog.  Signs are designed to get their message into your brain before you’ve decided whether or not you want to read them.

Like the bench signs which read “SEE?!  Bench signs work!”

They sure do.  Signs are like little psychic blowgun darts shot at you by tribes of indigenous marketers.

So check out this group of Canadian Atheists who like to put up signs on the sides of buses which read “”Extraordinary Claims Require Extraordinary Evidence” with “Allah, Bigfoot, UFOs, Homeopathy, Zeus, Psychics, Christ” provided as examples.

On their website, they elaborate a little more, musing about why people get ridiculed for believing in Bigfoot, but revered for believing in Allah or God.  Although, it does not appear that anyone’s getting revered in this particular situation, does it?

The man behind these ads, Mr. Justin Trotter, insists that he is not trying to be offensive. 

But I do take offense, sir.  You see, I know Bigfoot.  One time I was in St. Louis and some pool sharks took me for eight hundred dollars, but then Bigfoot showed up and won it back for me and bought me some gyros.  Bigfoot is a friend of mine, and you, sir, are no Bigfoot.

It’s not like atheists are the only ones who like to put up offensive signs, though.  How about when I’m driving down the highway and keep having to take in gargantuan signs reading “HELL IS REAL!” or “SCREW YOU, TOM, YOU’RE GOING TO HELL!”  or whatever they say. 

It’s like damn it, I’m trying to drink a beer, here.  Calm down.

And don’t get me started on the Pro-Lifers and their Abortion Picture Trucks.  Speaking of People Who I’m Most Likely To Wind Up In Federal Court Discussing Why I Used A Cinderblock To Make Them Look A Lot Like The Pictures On Their Own Trucks.

Wait we weren’t speaking about that, were we?

Anyway.  Jerks and their giant signs.  You know, I used to be the kind of guy who wanted to sit and argue with you about the existence of God, but then I grew up and realized I’m stupid and so is everyone else.  It’s just so much easier to let everybody believe what they want to believe, without putting up big, faith-attacking signs.

That’s what bothers me the most about these guys.  They’re kind of going, what?  We’re just opening a dialogue.

Except no, you don’t have dialogues with giant signs.  You just look at them and get angry.  Or you put them up and feel clever.  There’s something like a hundred thousand dollars sunk into these signs – do you have any idea how many beers and gyros you could have bought for me with that money?  And if you did, I’d believe whatever the hell you said to believe, you know – I’m not complicated.

If someone has faith in their religion, I don’t want to alarm you but it’s probably doing them a lot of good.  The difference, so you know dudes, is that religion is about faith, and Bigfoot is not.

I think if humankind had spent the last several millenia erecting statues and temples dedicated to Bigfoot, then you’d probably find that people took him a little more seriously.  Right now, it’s pretty hard to come up with someone who even claims to have one of his turds.

Have you ever tried to prove that a turd came from Bigfoot?  Without another Bigfoot turd to compare it to, it’s pretty tricky.

Faith isn’t about evidence or turds.  It’s about believing without either of those things – I’m not sure that’s exactly how the Pope would put it, but whatever.

How’s about you leave them alone and focus on whatever good you want to do, godlessly.  Seriously, I’m all for you.  You’d be giving Atheists all over the world a better name, by refusing to engage in that tiresome, sophomoric arrogance that so often makes people stop listening to you.

Instead you’re putting up your own version of the HELL IS REAL signs.  Maybe you guys could all get together and scream Ford! Chevy! at each other, or perhaps Less Filling!  Tastes Great! 

Meanwhile the rest of us, those of us with a bunch of stuff to do, will go about our business, irritated but probably not particularly swayed either way, by your big, stupid signs.

 
9 Comments

Posted by on December 5, 2010 in News/Commentary

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Occam’s Razor Is Not A Law Of Physics

Conspiracy theories – that’s a really general term.

It’s not like elves or Sasquatches or fish large enough to potentially eat a small human being.

In other words, it makes sense to me if you say that you don’t believe in elves or Bigfoot. You’ve never seen either of them, and no one has ever produced a solid photograph, film, or turd that can clearly and definitely be attributed to either one.

But if you say that you don’t believe in conspiracy theories, I don’t even know what you’re talking about.

Most of them get yanked right out of somebody’s butt, there’s no question about that.  Just check out the front page of the news, think of somebody who might have benefited in any way from any story, and then phrase it in the form of a question.

Did Obama send a black ops team to sabotage the Deepwater well, as part of his agenda to stop offshore drilling?  Or did the industrial-military complex do it as part of an effort to manipulate the commodities market?  Or was it just a big thing that broke and wasn’t supposed to?

That’s a good spot to apply Occam’s Razor, an old phrase in medieval philosophy which was all about the inherent simplicity of explanations.

What you do, according to William of Occam – who didn’t really make up the Razor, he just went around talking about it all the time, and wound up with all the credit – is you try to pick the solution with the fewest assumptions.

For instance, we can see how things already break all the time. Especially big things – no conspiracy needed.

But you know, Occam’s Razor is not a law of physics.  It’s a guideline.  A general rule.  Occasionally, the explanation is unbelievably complicated, riddled with coincidence, and there’s nothing Occam’s Razor can do about it.

For instance. Back in 2001, there was a nut running around Columbus shooting people while they were driving their cars.  The whole city was really on edge for weeks on end, until the cops finally figured out who the guy was – pretty good work on their part, too, if I remember – and they put his face on national television.

The problem was, he figured out they were on to him and fled.  In a shocking example of how easy it still is to disappear in this enormous country of ours, the guy drove straight from Columbus to Las Vegas, where he checked into a hotel.

So a couple of guys were sitting around the casino, and they saw the guy.

They said, that’s him right there. One of them went over to him and gave him a slice of pizza, said here we’re not going to eat this, you want it?

After that he was sure.  He called the Feds at the number they’d seen on the news story with the guy’s picture.  But the Feds were getting a lot of calls, so they didn’t necessarily believe it.  So the guys hit the parking garage, and they found the sniper’s car – his license plate number was on the news story, too.

So they called the Feds again, and ultimately, that call led to the arrest of the sniper.

Then a guy calls in after the story has run for a couple of hours. He says, hey – I’m the guy from the casino to whom they gave a slice of pizza.

So think about that for a minute. In USA Today the next day, they showed the two guys’ pictures next to each other, and they looked a lot alike.  But no, they hadn’t seen the sniper.  They’d seen another guy who looked a lot like him. 

It’s just that when that happened, the sniper by coincidence was in the same casino they were, so they found his car anyway when they went to look for it.

That’s what I’m saying about Occam’s Razor – it’s not a law of physics. What happened there was a lot more complicated than the simplest explanation I can think of. And things like that happen all the time.

But still, there’s a weird trend going on where we identify a story as a “conspiracy theory” and then we reject it out of hand. We roll our eyes at it. As if conspiracy theories are never, ever true, and never have been.

Mind-blowing, since we know that many conspiracy theories are accurate.

Take warrantless wiretapping in the Bush Administration. If I were telling you, man, the government’s tapping our phones man, they aren’t getting warrants, they’re just skipping that step all together and listening in to whatever they want!

See, that’s a conspiracy theory. It’s just that it’s also a news story from this past decade, and it’s also now common knowledge.  So we don’t call it a conspiracy theory anymore – even though that’s what it was before it got on the news.

So let me get this straight – you say that you categorically do not believe in conspiracy theories.  Then I point one out and you say, okay, so there’s one conspiracy, but that’s it.

Say it was Bigfoot. You don’t believe in Sasquatches because you’ve never seen one. Then one walks by and tips his hat at you, spits on your shoe.  Once he’s gone, you’re convinced only that there is a single Sasquatch, and also you’re going to start calling him a new kind of bear.

It doesn’t make sense.

Also, a standard response to the conspiracy guy is that people can’t keep secrets. Yes, go ahead and pick me a up a copy of every classified CIA file then please.  I’d like a rundown of everything the CIA has ever done, the names of every agent, and what they’ve all been doing since 1967.

What’s the problem, I thought the government was too disorganized to keep secrets, that coordinated activity could not physically be kept a secret?  That it was outside human nature to keep secrets – like asking us to fly or lay eggs.

A conspiracy theory is usually crap – that’s what the word theory is about, dudes.  It’s not a New Conspiracy Law.  It’s a theory.  A lot of times, a knucklehead pulled it right out of his butt for the sheer purpose of attracting traffic to his blog, sure.

But sometimes they’re real. Sometimes, a bunch of people got together and decided to do something bad just because it benefited them, and then they all agreed to lie about it.

What, exactly, in human nature makes that so hard to believe?

 
7 Comments

Posted by on July 28, 2010 in Future Tom Grab Bag, Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,