They jeered the weird
It's time to announce the winners of our "Weird! Isn't Working" essay contest. The results have been verified by the Florida Secretary of State's office, and the winners, selected by a vote of 99 of our readers (alive and dead), are:
1. AL M.
2. Texas Triffid Ranch
Each will receive a first-edition "Weird! Isn't Working" bumper sticker, and we'll throw in a bojack.org bumper sticker as well. If the winners would just send us an e-mail message with their snail mail addresses, we''ll get them out right away.
And in breaking news, last night we came across a third "WIW" sticker that got a little dog-eared at the bottom of our briefcase, and we're going to send that one out to third-place finisher Gannicott. Maybe he can iron it out.
Thanks to everyone who wrote in -- the comments really were excellent -- and if you'd like to buy a "WIW" sticker, just send a message here and they'll fill you in on the details. I think they're still charging five bucks, including shipping and handling.
Well, that ends our competition. See you and the bumper sticker out on the road. We leave you with the winning entries:
"We are in the process of creating what deserves to be called the idiot culture. Not an idiot sub-culture, which every society has bubbling beneath the surface and which can provide harmless fun; but the culture itself. For the first time, the weird and the stupid and the coarse are becoming our cultural norm, even our cultural ideal." -- Carl Bernstein (American Journalist, b.1944)
America: I give you PORTLAND ORYGON!
Yeah, it's great to be "edgy." It's great to be "expressing your individuality" by dressing and talking exactly like everyone else in your pod. It's great to sleep until 11 because you don't have a real job to go to, or sit around all day talking about obscure zines and movies because you're going to get around to doing one or the other one of these days. And you know what's going to happen when the money runs out?
Hey, I'll tell you exactly what happens when the money runs out. You won't have anything invested in the area, so you'll leave. You'll move back to your parents' little suburban enclave, where they'll have your bedroom looking exactly the way it looked when you graduated from high school 20 years ago. You can go back to having a nice big bowl of Cookie Crisp at the kitchen table every morning before going off to brag to your high school classmates (or their kids) about how you lived in edgy, innovative Portland. You can tell pretty much the same lies about your life in Portland that you told when you first moved out there: that you were popular, you were successful, and you Made A Difference.
Yeah, you're all set. All you have to do is wait for your parents to kack it, and then you have a prepaid place to stay for the rest of your life. That is, if they didn't have to sign a reverse mortgage to pay for your little games through your thirties and forties. The rest of us, though, have to clean up your messes, and would prefer if you put on your big-boy pants and stopped acting like Ruprecht in the film "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels."
And yes, this can be applied both to hipsters and the City of Portland management. Do I get a cookie?
Sam replaced the shears in their holster. His scalp tingled. He felt liberated. No more lies. No more deception. His path was chosen. He knew the press would be harsh, the public disdainful. But Randy would understand. He always had. The challenges would be many -- a different restroom, more complex wardrobe choices on junkets, a new style of bicycle. But it was time. His time. Too long he had labored at keeping Portland weird. But it wasn't the city that was working for him anymore. It was time for a change. Weird just wasn't working. Sam reached for his preferred provider list and found the dog eared page. "Gender Reassignment Therapy." He mouthed the words "This is for Samantha" as he reached for the phone.........