Reading Digest: Esteemed Publication Usage Edition

Guess Who's Coming to Criticize Dinner4

“Over the years, The Shopper merged with the Springfield Times, Post, Globe, Herald, Jewish News, and Hot Sex Weekly to become Springfield’s number one newspaper.” – Tour Guide

There was quite a bit of newspaper usage this week, most of it rather good and from shockingly respectable publications.  (There was even one from the Financial Times called “European politicians and Homer Simpson”, but it’s paywalled and I don’t give enough of a shit to register.)  More importantly, today is your last chance to tweet your favorite Simpsons quote to Daily Simpsons.  I haven’t submitted one, but I’m going to predict that the alcohol quote will be #1, followed closely by “That’s unpossible” at #2.  As someone who sees a lot of things quoted on-line, those are the serious heavy hitters.  If you’re on Twitter, give them a shout.  Other than that, sit back and get ready for the usual smorgasbord of strange links, including two translated YouTube videos, several Christmas links, and one of the best subtle Zombie Simpsons insults I’ve ever read.


Author of Emblematic Cumbia Song “La Pollera Colorá” Dies (VIDEO) – Smooth Charlie’s click of the week involves a classic Colombian song, Spanish language “Flaming Moe’s”, and YouTube of both! 

12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS – You lucky British bastards can now order Duff in cans or bottles:

Now, courtesy of the Duff Beer Distribution Ltd., you can also consume large quantities of this once-fictional beer! Brewed by the highly acclaimed Eschweger Klosterbrauerei brewery to the German purity laws of 1864, Duff Beer is a premium German pilsner with a light refreshing taste.

At £40 for 24 bottles, it ain’t cheap.  But you don’t buy something like that because it’s going to become your go to beer, you buy something like that because awesome. 

THE SIMPSONS CHRISTMAS: The Commercialization of Christmas is, at Best, a Mixed Blessing – Someone who hasn’t watched a lot of Simpsons bought a Christmas themed DVD out of the bargain bin.  It contained “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire”, “Grift of the Magi”, “Miracle on Evergreen Terrace”, “She of Little Faith”, and . . . “Mr. Plow”?  This is why those non-Season DVDs are always suspect, the episode selection is less than ideal and there’s always crap from later seasons.  Anyway, the good stuff did shine through:

“Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire” – The best episode of the bunch,

Frozen Planet, episode seven, BBC One, review – This is a review of a BBC nature special in The Telegraph:

When it comes to Frozen Planet, they’ll be almost sadistically spoiled for choice. (Personally, amid the more spectacular thrills, I loved the scene where a seal pursued a penguin on land – possibly the slowest screen chase since Grandpa Simpson tried to catch that tortoise.)

Heh.  Though I imagine the penguin was a bit more stressed than the tortoise was. 

Accepting Reyes’ Departure – This is excellent baseball usage, but you have to click through to really get it.  Don’t worry, the important parts are in nice, big block quotes.

Fill my Mailbox – This blog collects postcards, and they recently had Krusty Brand Seal of Approval one featuring Barney.  Apparently, “He’s also a guy who happens to love beer.”  Shocking.

An aposiopesis of the furious kind – I learned a new word today:

Aposiopesis […] is a fancy rhetorical term for a familiar act: an abrupt breaking off of a thought, mid-sentence, often because of overwhelming emotion. Aposiopeses is the plural form, aposiopetic the adjectival.

The example he cites is when Homer says “Why you little. . .”, and there’s YouTube.  It’s YouTube badly infected with Zombie Simpsons, but that’s hardly the fault of “aposiopesis”. 

Josh Duhamel Turned Lisa Simpson On, and Other Highlights From the New Years Eve Press Day – That reprehensible looking New Year’s Eve movie is opening today, which means the media tour is in full swing.  I did not know that Yeardley Smith was in the cast, but apparently she is.  This, by the way, is A-grade charming movie star patter:

Josh Duhamel’s scenes with Yeardly Smith, best known as the voice of Lisa Simpson, proved more discomfiting than he anticipated:

“I kept thinking, ‘This is Lisa Simpson,’” Duhamel recounted. “She was playing the pastor’s wife, and there was a few takes where she was playing it really kinda frisky … I was telling her this story about this girl that I’d met the year before, and she played it like she was getting all hot and bothered, and I kept thinking, ‘I’m making Lisa Simpson all hot and bothered with this story.’ There was something really wrong about that.”

The 10 Worst Stephen King Adaptations Ever – Hey, speaking of bad movies with Yeardley Smith, the #1 movie on this list is Maximum Overdrive.  There’s lots of YouTube here, including a spectacularly crappy trailer that features King bragging about directing this and lots of a very young Smith screaming in that unmistakable voice of hers. 

Statistics hide real pain – The Sydney Morning Herald parses this week’s US unemployment rate figures and says:

After picking apart the unemployment numbers I soon started thinking of that old saying, ”lies, damned lies and statistics”. Then my mind switched to that great philosopher, Homer Simpson, reminding me that, ”people can come up with statistics to prove anything. Fourteen per cent of people know that.”

Close, but Forfty!

Romney’s Vice – Okay, this is in the comments rather than in an article or a post, but it is well quoted:

Asked to identify “something bad that [Mitt Romney] likes to eat or drink,” Ann Romney tells Parade, “Chocolate milk. … Over the Moon Chocolate Milk, which is the low-fat kind.”

To which the second commenter replies:

Ned Flanders: "Who’s up for a big bowl of nonfat ice milk?"

Todd Flanders: "I want wintergreen!"

Maude Flanders: "Unflavored for me."


American Horror Story – Courtesy of endless sequels and “Marge on the Lam”, here’s your cheap laugh of the week.

Nananananananana blogging! – YouTube of Homer singing the old Batman theme from “The Joy of Sect”, but in German. 

Anime Dunk Hi-Tops. – They’re not all anime, and the Simpsons one near the bottom is surprisingly cool looking. 

NHL’s Conference Realignment…In 10 Words – That does kind of look like the nuclear plant board. 

Tatum: Hog wild in Texas – Close:

the pig was once famously characterized by renowned philosopher Homer Simpson as “some wonderful, magical animal.”

He just calls it “a wonderful, magical animal”, but that’s close enough for moderate usage.

Dec. 2 Open Line – Swing and a miss:

Homer Simpson found a pristine issue of Action Comics number one at a garage sale and tossed it aside and said, “I’ve already read it.” Then he found an old postage stamp, tossed it aside and said, “Dumb stamp, plane is upside down.”

Poor usage.

The Simpsons – A Simpsons virgin finally caves and watches a few episodes:

My final analysis: Story structure counts for a lot, and “The Simpsons” is wonderfully well-written.

Well, it used to be. 

LYIT shows Maths can be fun – Who says television is bad?:

Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) hosted a very successful interactive “Maths of the Simpsons” show to mark Maths Week Ireland recently for primary school children from all over Donegal. This is the second year LYIT has hosted the event. This year the Institute invited Matt Parker, maths enthusiast and teacher, to present his highly entertaining interactive event called “Maths of the Simpsons” which was very well received by the young students.

Sadly there isn’t much there in the way of details. 

Appointment Viewing: December 5-December 11 – Lenny on this Sunday’s episode of Zombie Simpsons:

Flash-forward to 2041: Bart and Lisa are heading home for the holidays with their own kids in tow. And when they turn to Marge and Homer for parenting advice, they come to realize that the apple doesn’t fall far from the Christmas tree. This is why Fox can’t cancel Allen Gregory. I need it to clear the palette after shit like this.

I recommend booze. 

Harry Morgan obituary: ‘MASH’ star dies at 96 – This is the Los Angeles Times obituary, and it does have the good sense to mention his guest appearance in “Mother Simpson”.

NJ Civil War Statue Beheaded – Someone beheaded a statue in New Jersey, the expected Simpsons reference is made. 

Travel Volunteer Blog – Everything you wanted to know about actual fugu, with lots of pictures. 

YouTube Hall of Fame: TV’s Best Holiday Episodes – “Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire” is here, but what’s really important is this YouTube video of the entire episode, but kind of sepia toned and at 2x speed:

I don’t quite know what to say. 

And the award for the best on-screen couple goes to… – It’s a list of television couples, including good old Marge and Homer. 

Greg Daniels trying prime-time animation for NBC with the help of Mindy Kaling – This is a very well done backhand Zombie Simpsons insult:

The past few years have seen many prime-time animated series attempting to replicate The Simpsons—chief among them the latter-day Simpsons


The Day Comedy Died: The Simpsons – A comprehensive review of how the show went down.  I don’t agree with all the particulars, but overall it’s pretty good:

The Simpsons is without a doubt one of televisions greatest shows.  The peak of this show was within their first seven seasons.  By the time the show left earth and consistently left the nuclear power plant, it left the reason the initial fans scheduled their week around it.  From beyond that point, like any long running program, the characters are used, tired and in some cases obsolete.  The writing went from new and fresh to old and stagnant.  The ratings have proved this, more so now than ever.


4 Responses to “Reading Digest: Esteemed Publication Usage Edition”

  1. 1 Bea Simmons's Rotting Corpse
    9 December 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Another connection on the Stephen King list: #9, Thinner, has Joe Mantegna in a pretty big role.

  2. 2 Lovejoy Fan
    10 December 2011 at 12:24 pm

    Just for the record, not all the non-season DVDs feature episodes from the zombie years; on “Heaven and Hell” (my personal favourite) the latest episode is from season 8.

    Despite being a Stephen King fan, the only one of those adaptations I’ve actually seen is “Sleepwalkers” (which really was just a bizarre film; I also saw a few episodes of “Nightmares and Dreamscapes”, but not the one mentioned here). Maybe I should keep it that way?

  3. 10 December 2011 at 5:37 pm


    Letterkenny is where I’m from!

    I had no idea the LYIT was doing a “Maths of the Simpsons” event!

    And I’m supposed to be a local!

    They should have done the “Maths of Futurama” though, that would have been far more entertaining. :)

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