Category Archives: Interviews
Interviews from a Parallel Universe
NEN: “Hi, Seth. Congrats on being chosen to host the Oscars. Can you tell us, what kind of cars are os cars, anyway?”
SETH: “Obviously superior to those driven by losers.”
NEN: “What kind of car do you drive?”
SETH: “I don’t drive.”
NEN: “Do you…dress yourself?”
SETH: “Nope. Someone feeds me too, and not just grapes.”
NEN: “You’re the most successful comedy writer of all time. How does that feel?”
SETH: “Like that antelope in the commercial with the night vision goggles. The press can’t bring me down and feast on my carcass anymore.”
NEN: “Wow. That must be a great feeling.”
SETH: “It is, but not as good as being fed filet mignon by supermodels in the jacuzzi behind my sixty million dollar beach house.”
NEN: “To what do you attribute your success?”
SETH: “Making Stewie’s head the shape of a football, and imbuing Peter with the mentality of your typical NASCAR fan.”
NEN: “That’s a big audience you’re pandering to.”
SETH: “You should try it, you might not be eating Beenie-Wienies with a plastic fork, alone, by candlelight.”
NEN: “I guess I do favor Brian’s perspective too much.”
SETH: “Brian’s a good egg, but he gets broken a lot. Our society favors those who break things, including laws, motel rooms, marriages, and necks. It’s always fun to blow things up, not so much fun to watch things being built. The trick is to take any idea or philosophy and run with it head on, full speed, until you hit a brick wall. Then you take a two ton drill to the wall and see if you can punch through.”
NEN: “To point out the flaws in the philosophy?”
SETH: “No, just to see what’s on the other side.”
NEN: “Humm. And what is that, usually?”
SETH: “Another wall.”
NEN: “Where are you going with this?”
SETH: “Nowhere. The goal is to just entertain people so they’ll sit through the commercials for more, and also to express my contempt for certain actors and cultural rituals and political stances.”
NEN: “Kinda like what we’re doing? So we’re not on your hit list?”
SETH: (after a pause) “My bodyguard just asked me, before I answer, to allow him to hit you a few times, just for practice. Would you mind?”
NEN: “May I have your autograph?”
SETH: “That’s better. You’re learning!”
NEN: “One final question. Do you believe in extraterrestrial UFOs or Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster?”
SETH: “Doesn’t matter what I believe, it doesn’t affect the truth one way or the other.”
NEN: “Good answer!”
SETH: “Besides, I lose answering a question like that, either way. Ratings. Now, if you ask Peter, he’s personally met Bigfoot and Nessie at Area 51, and shared a jacuzzi on a UFO with several Entertainment Tonight babes.”
NEN: “Which ones?”
SETH: “Sorry, that’s classified.”
Interviews from a Parallel Universe
William F. Buckley, Jr.: “Welcome to Firing Line, astronomer Carl Sagan, televangelist Creflo Dollar, and rapper 50 Cent.”
Sagan: “Nice to see you again, Bill.”
Buckley: “Speaking of philosophy for a moment, if we may, as a hypothetical would any of you have, let us posit, intellectual quandaries related to inviting anyone here to, say, a cocktail party to discuss such a subject?”
Sagan: “I have no problem, Bill, but I imagine you’d be the only one to show up.”
50: “Oh yeah, and why is that?”
Sagan: “Would you like to come over and discuss Karl Popper with me, Mr. Cent?”
50: “You poppin’ for the gourmet popcorn? Sure. You be nice I’ll pop over. Might not pop ya, either, pop… You up for that, preacher?”
Dollar: “No comment.”
50: “Oh, come on! Give these clowns an Amen. Go with the flow, Creflo!”
Sagan: “His philosophy is Justificationism, the belief that knowledge is only derived from authority. Yours is Relativism, the belief that statements cannot be objectively true or false, but that they can be judged only relative to some cultural or arbitrary standard.”
50: “Huh? How da you know what I believe, fool?”
Sagan: “I’m a Rational Realist. I believe the universe exists objectively, independent of human observation, and that knowledge evolves from creating better explanations for phenomena.”
Buckley: “Moving on to origins, would you concede that postmodern logical positivism has the same degree of bearing on, let us say, the acceptance of Big Bang theory that religious fundamentalism has had in the past hundred years?”
50: “Hey, wait a ©#kin’ minute here!”
Sagan: “Wittgenstein aside, if one chooses to reject all theories not based on direct observation, one comes up against the very scientific method that one denigrates, since logical positivism is itself a theory of philosophy which cannot be verified by observation. If, for example, you’re going to say that reality isn’t real and can’t be known, just so you can’t be criticized, well, you’re in the same camp, aren’t you, as those who reject evidence based on a literal interpretation of allegory? Reverend Dollar, wouldn’t you…wouldn’t you at least concede the idea that the Big Bang sounds like an act of God, since that very instant of creation can’t be explained by science, while your clinging to your belief of the Earth being only six thousand years old goes against multiple lines of evidence so entangled and overlapping that it’s akin to knowing within an hour when the sun will come up tomorrow?”
Dollar: “No comment.”
50: “Yeah? Well, I got a comment. Firing line? Ignore me like that again and you racists snobs all gonna see some big bangs up close and personal! Who the hell ya think you are anyway, honkey?”
Sagan: “Just a human being.”
Buckley: “By which you mean, anthropocentrically speaking, of course…”
Sagan: “The law of mediocrity, yes. Humans are not important or particularly special within the framework of universal physics or the vast reach of time and space. So ego is just ephemeral and self deluding by nature. Imagine another being…another intelligence on another world a billion light years away and a billion years in the future…imagine this creature staring through a telescope at the Milky Way’s spiral arm and wondering if life exists in the vicinity of a smudge of tiny dots, one invisible one of which is circled by Earth and us this very moment. Would such an entity be justified in feeling unique or superior to even a fellow on its own world, especially one whose genetic makeup it shares by over nine hundred ninety-nine parts in a thousand? Would such a race have any chance of survival into that future if offense was taken at every opportunity, and war declared whenever egos were bruised?”
Dollar: “No comment.”
50: “Holy ∆˚πƒ¥©#@t. You fools talkin’ billions is outta my league so far. I do ya fifty million, though.”
Dollar: “No comment.”
Buckley: “Moving on to cultural memes, do you think progress is also slowed by the suppression of new ideas in alien races programmed to follow trends in, can we surmise, knee jerk fashion?”
Neil deGrasse Tyson: “Sorry I’m late. Hi, Carl. To answer your question, it depends on if they have knees! Seriously, we can only talk philosophically here, but there’s no reason to suppose the same ignorance of the proper development of good explanatory theory doesn’t apply. Aliens might have similar fallacies of logic and preconceived modalities of solving problems influenced by myths and legends. When presented with new theories, they might cling to Instrumentalism, or the mistaken belief that science can’t describe reality outside of subjective points of reference. Fads come and go, but cultural memes can stay with societies for generations, influencing people without their conscious knowledge just like in the Dark Ages, and so, like with fundamental physics, there’s no reason to suppose that aliens are any–”
50: “I’m outta here. You comin,’ Cre–”
Buckley: “Dollar’s already gone.”
FAME: A super power granted lucky and well connected people enabling them to waste everyone’s time, not just their own.
BOB: So you never liked sports?
WALTER: Not really.
BOB: How is that possible? Born without the sports gene? Like maybe a sociopath without empathy for your fellow man?
WALTER: Or like Galileo. Or Einstein. Or Gandhi. Or John Lennon. Or Bono. The Earth isn’t flat, Costus. Hercules isn’t holding it up.
BOB: Excuse me?
WALTER: How can I, if you won’t excuse me?
BOB: I’m sorry. I don’t understand. What are you saying?
WALTER: Could you understand, being born without the logic gene? I’m saying you won’t leave people alone, free from your tyranny. By you, of course, I mean other commentators too, like Dan Patrick. . .along with sporting news and billboards and being forced to listen to endless monotonous scores on buses and airports and in break rooms nationwide. Change the channel and one could get a Coke can bounced off his head. Or a Pepsi can. The rivalry between those two is fake, by the way. They both play games with our health while they sew the American flag into jerseys and jock straps.
BOB (laughing): You’re amusing. . . and quaint!
WALTER: Oh really? Show me your underwear.
BOB: Where’s the logic in dismissing what’s given so many people so much pleasure?
WALTER: Cocaine is pleasurable too. While it eliminates everything else that could give you pleasure in the same way. With so few off hours in the day, that is.
BOB: Ever heard the phrase “moderation in all things?”
WALTER: Ever heard the phrase “all sports all the time?” Sports Center jocks on ESPN don’t have time for Masterpiece Theatre. Or for smelling the roses. They’re too busy calculating the rushing yardage of rookie quarterbacks, or watching Ultimate Cage Fighters do their Attila the Hun imitations, or kicking wifee’s poodle after their team loses in the playoffs.
BOB: That’s unfair. Sports is about the human spirit. Excellence. Achieving more in life!
WALTER: Another diamond choker for your pit bull, maybe. More diabetes for most others, while racking up more billions in deficits watching games on company time. Try looking at the masses on the boob tube side of your lens. Or doesn’t the number of unemployed asses and assettes register on your scoreboard like your overpaid players do?
BOB: Who says players are overpaid? Top athletes are the best in their field, and a lot more healthy and fit than you, I might add!
WALTER: It’s amusing and quaint that you believe you can add, but you’re tabulating the wrong ledger. Your logic doesn’t compute, either. Because even I’m more productive than they are.
BOB (after a long interval of hysterical laughter): How do you figure that?
WALTER: Well, I don’t inspire people to believe we can win unwinnable wars by throwing thousands of patriots and trillions of dollars at them. There’s one item. Plus I’m not inspiring kids to become athletes, condemning the vast majority of them to jobs on the level of beer truck driver whenever they’re not watching sports on TV.
BOB: What’s wrong with driving a beer truck or drinking soda?
WALTER: I told you that you wouldn’t understand. Meanwhile, as a non-participant, I’m not adding to these losses.
BOB: What losses?
WALTER: While we compete on Astroturf the Chinese are making it. Along with thousands of other products. While we invest in stadiums and weapons systems to defend Korea, they build factories, and compete in school to produce more engineers at our expense.
BOB: Well, that’s. . .insane.
WALTER: I agree. As insane as painting one’s face to participate in a human wave at a ball game.
BOB: No, I mean your reasoning! Sports inspires people to be their best!
WALTER: In sports, you mean. Instead of science or math or–-
BOB: No! You don’t—
WALTER: Oh yes! And in the end, what chance do those kids have if they don’t win the sports gene lottery, and then never get up off the couch except to buy Powerball tickets, pork rinds, and copies of Sports Illustrated? Maybe you and Dan think they should try to win America’s Got Talent instead? Juggle some flaming bowling pins?
BOB: The American people disagree with you, big time.
WALTER: Don’t I know it. Sad, though, don’t you think?
BOB: You’re sad, in my humble opinion.
WALTER: There’s nothing humble about your opinion. It’s all a ruse, too. To fool the public. To keep the slavish dream going while you and your banking buddies manipulate the strings behind the curtains.
BOB: You’re insane, as well.
WALTER: Keep saying that. Repeat it. Maybe I’ll believe it myself, right? Then you’ll let me go.
BOB: Sadly, we can never let you go. Not like this.
WALTER: Won’t you at least loosen these ropes? I’m not going to recant in front of you, your high priests of hyperbole, or the NFL and NBA Dioceses. If you go through with that face tattoo, I’ll just have it removed.
BOB: If you do, we’ll find you again. You can’t hide. You’re a marked man now, out of the closet.
WALTER: What’s in your closet. . . a gold statue of Joe Paterno? You’re costing us all, Costus. More than we know.
BOB (laughing): We? You think there’s more like you out there? No. They’ve all been neutered. (Motioning:) Dan?
WALTER: Wait! Okay. I confess. Anything but a Nike swish on my forehead. Even if it is upside down. Listen. Here’s what I’ll do. Penance by writing a novel about a guy who plays the Powerball and wins. Lots of action too. No wimpy crap. Kinda like Survivor, but where if you don’t beat the opposing team you’re shark food. I’ll even throw in some sports jargon, and celebs like Clooney and Lady Gaga. Make the main guy an ego case real estate mogul, just like those sports gods who hire agents to buy homes on Millionaire Listings. So it’ll be about defending your island man-cave and secret stash from the tax man with automatic weapons, schmoozing with the right people, and coming out of it with squeaky clean hands and a big greasy smile. How about that?
BOB: Sounds good. Just do it. Here’s a pen. When you finish we might even feed you some hot dogs and beer. Then we’ll bring in Sarah Palin and let her read it. . .before deciding what to do with you. I hear she just bought a new Salman knife.
WALTER: Speaking of which, mind if I call Sockeye Rushdie for advice first? I’m not in a rush to die, here. . .
An episode of Dr. Phil featuring Joan Rivers talking about her new book will not air, say executives for CBS, due to violence and excessive use of the “F” word. In the following transcript (which we obtained from our sources inside Hollywood), we have substituted the word “Frak,” which was also the substitute curse word used on the SF series Battlestar Galactica. For the “S” word, we have substituted “Feces.”
Dr. Phil) Joan, I’d like to discuss why you feel that you need to curse so much.
Joan Rivers) I don’t curse. I’m just talking here. Can we talk? Frak is a word, is it not? One of the most used words in the English frakin’ language, if you ask me. Frak!
Phil) Doesn’t the word lose its power through overuse, though?
Joan) Tell that to the censors. Or to college students.
Phil) I believe the word “like” is used more often by students.
Joan) You’re, like, right, doc. That’s why I said “one of.” So can you, like, cut me a frakin’ break?
Phil) Plus, don’t you think that using words like Frak and Feces are immature?
Joan) I’m in my second childhood, Phil, so I am frakin’ immature. Feces! Since I’ll need a colostomy bag soon, shouldn’t I be allowed to, like, have some frakin’ fun?
Phil) Getting to the point, then, could you explain why you hate yourself so much that it manifests as hatred for others?
Joan) How do you know that my hating others didn’t, like, spill over into hating myself?
Phil) Because that’s not how it works.
Joan) Who told you that—Freud? That dweeb was so screwed up he wanted to frak his own mother.
Phil) It’s quite obvious that do hate yourself, Joan. But why? Have you thought about that? Why use comedy as a blunt instrument to avoid this question?
Joan) Feces, I’m not trying to avoid anything but death. I figure if I talk about death often enough, maybe it’ll go away. Frak death, I say. Frak it! See? It’s losing its powerful death grip on me already! Although I’m having my weekly face and tummy touchup this afternoon around three-ish.
Phil) You know what your problem is? You’ve been focused too much on ego. You hate people who display bigger egos than you, and you’re surrounded by them in Hollywood. It’s like this twisted reality show you can’t turn off. So why don’t you move to Wichita? You might find some peace of mind there, and real friends instead of fake ones.
Joan) Oh, listen to you, Doc Hollywood. You got your start on Oprah, the biggest egomaniac this side of Waterloo. Why don’t you advise her on yo-yo dieting? Rip that bucket of extra crispy from her paws, and tell her to quit offering her couch as a trampoline to every whacked out potato head expecting to be saved by E.T..
Phil) Oprah doesn’t have a show anymore, Joan. She’s into her Next Chapter. She visits people in their homes. Would you like me to ask her to visit you?
Joan) Only if she brings an obscenely expensive bottle of wine. And no Merlot! Otherwise it’ll be her Final Chapter.
Phil) You’re really obnoxiously hard on people, you know.
Joan) I do know. Frak you very much. I take that as a compliment. Nice people like you are just so obnoxiously boring. You know? That’s why I hate you. Nobody’s got a sense of humor, anymore. Especially people with talk shows. And I don’t just mean, like, Leno. He’s just too kind. He’s a frakin’ wuss. Letterman, though, is one frakin’ mean-ass son of a bitch, and nuttier than a Phyllis Diller recipe fruitcake. Feces! He’ll try stabbing you in the back with a felt tip pen! Of course he had a stalker once, so that justifies everything to you, right?
Phil) I hate you.
Joan) Yessssss! See? I’ve just saved you. You’re not boring anymore. Let it all out, big boy. You can do it! Punch me one right h—
Phil, after a pause) I’m sorry, Joan.
Joan) That’s okay. My plastic surgeon does this all the time. No pain, no gain. Hey, want to know my biggest problem with Hitler? He wore such ugly brown shirts.
Order at bottom of this page: http://towerreview.com/books.html
We provided the questions and the University of Arizona the venue. Psychics Sylvia Browne and John Edward hosted the Earth Day event, with The Amazing Randi present to officiate (and to pay Kim a $1,000,000 fee should an apparition actually appear.) Thousands of students watched the stage of Crowder Hall as the curtain rose and a single shaft of light illuminated the interview table where Kim sat and shuffled papers. Then Sylvia and John began their incantations, drawing inspiration from ancient Egyptian texts, (along with certain banned Haitian voodoo rituals.) After a few tense moments a tenuous interplay of shadow and substance coruscated opposite Kim, finally coalescing into a familiar figure—the hair wild, the wilder eyes (if for just a moment.) Then the figure calmed and sighed.
“Oh,” it said, “it’s you.” And so the seance/interview began.
Kim) You’re not surprised to, like, see me?
Albert) Not really.
Kim) So you know who I am?
Albert) Everyone knows who you are. Except you.
Kim) What’s that mean? Just who are you, anyway? I mean I’ve heard your name, but. . .
Albert) I am not as famous as you, that is true.
Kim) Who is. Please answer my question!
Albert) What is your first question?
Kim) I just– Nevermind. (Looks down at list) Is there really life after death?
Albert) I do not know. I am not dead. This is a trance for me. Your present is my future. Your past is my present. Both are equally valid, although I am not certain of the mechanism with which we are communicating. Yet.
Kim) Question two. Were you right about time being relative? (Turns to Browne) What’s that? Mr. Time is somebody’s cousin or something?
Albert) Close enough.
Kim) Question three. Are there multiple universes? What a silly question.
Albert) Not silly at all. I now suspect there may be multiple universes, and on very rare occasions, when the branes get close, information may pass between the bubbles. I am not certain how I know this. I do not always remember what I envision when I awaken, but I suppose I must today concede that there are quantum forces at work. Spooky action at a distance.
Kim) This is spooky, all right. Just how old are you?
Edward) Stick to the script, please!
Kim) Okay, okay! What about string theory? …Whatever that is. I like thongs myself. Do you know what a thong is? Nevermind.
Albert) String theory, in what I deduce from my future visions, is–
Kim) Hey, why’d you imply I didn’t know myself? That’s not a nice thing to say! I still don’t know who you are. For all I can tell, you’re just some kinda super nerd that–
Edward & Browne in unison) The script!
Kim) Okay! Don’t be mean, haters. Next question. Is global warming real?
Albert) Alas, it is true. Although a collision between alternate universe branes may eclipse the inundation of Miami Beach, resulting in another Big Bang, and destroying Mother Earth. Or so I’m sensing, somehow.
Kim) Have you seen my show over there, wherever there is?
Albert, after a pause) That is on your list of questions?
Kim) Of course. It’s an important question. The most important one.
Albert) Sad. I confess I have not dissected your show, although I have perceived your appearance many times in the national news, talking about it. You were once the lead story, ahead of reports of a tsunami that killed forty thousand people. I did have a brief vision of your show once, but I could not make it through a commercial featuring a talking gekko, so I changed the channel. So to speak.
Browne) Ask him if he’s channeled anyone!
Kim) Shut up, that’s not on the list. Okay, next question. What do you think about pop culture today?
Kim) Did you hear me? What do you think about–
Albert) Do you mean your today or my today?
Albert) Once I implied that human stupidity was infinite. I stand by that statement.
Kim) Are you calling me stupid, now?
Albert) Not everything is just about you. But yes, here and now and there and now and forever more, amen. God plays dice on occasion, I think. Most of the time His dice are loaded. Other times He can either get sevens or crap out. To answer the question about pop culture, my child, the main problem with your bubble is that you don’t know it is a bubble. Everyone is either blowing bubbles or watching them being blown, with no realization that none of it matters. You do not know what matters. Only your scientists use telescopes and microscopes, while you seek a hall full of funhouse mirrors. It is a place of optical delusion. You imagine you are infinite, and that your progeny are an infinite reflection of you. But you do not matter, either. You are only a cog in the evolution of the species. A toy of a genetic cog that imagines itself the engine, and refuses to evolve or adapt, being content with primping and posing in front of a mirror instead. Or blowing bubbles into the camera. Only when you realize this can change happen. Only when you–
Kim to Edward and Browne) Are you recording this?? He called me “my child.” Am I related? Can I use this in my– No, wait! On first thought, just give me my million dollars. Here and now now. You have your proof, right?
…and we our spoof.