July 02, 2007

Those Lazy, Hazy, (and Very) Crazy Days of Summer

Oh No!
It's Time for Yet Another Installment of ...

An occasional Rant feature

ONE OF THE THINGS I like about summer here in New Hampshire is that, for much of the season, the temperatures are actually somewhat pleasant. For instance, this entire week the mercury should not crack 80 degrees, and the nights will be cool and comfortable. This week is especially nice because of the Fourth of July, and aside from the occasional ruckus -- a few nights ago, either someone was setting off fireworks or al-Qaeda was shelling my neighborhood -- folks can take some time just to relax and have fun.

Unfortunately, this doesn't hold for the rest of the country, where the stifling heat and wretched humidity keep people indoors far more often. This gives them plenty of time to go on-line and do on-line searches that, if they didn't prompt howls of laughter from my end of the computer, would amount to some type of Biblical plague, viz.


AND LO! THE MULTITUDE DID pour forth onto the Internet, and soon discovered the search engines which brought forth wisdom such as existed in the Tree of Knowledge. And the multitude began to search for the answers they sought, saying, “Come, let us search for the answers we have sought, for everything on-line is apparently in English. Behold, the people is one, and we have all one language; now nothing shall be restrained from us.”

So the multitude went forth and Googled about all that which they had wondered, and it was good. But some lost their way from the narrow path, and began searching for homework answers and celebrity news and other information on seemingly unrelated Web sites, saying, “Come, let us search for homework answers and celebrity news and other information on seemingly unrelated Web sites, for it will be easier and there’s a small chance this might actually work.”

And lo, many of those came to Benjamin Kepple’s Daily Rant to have their search engine queries answered. And Kepple said, “Behold, the multitude have stumbled upon The Rant looking for wisdom, and except for a few people asking decent questions, the multitude are out of their ever-loving minds. Let us go and confound their queries, so they may not receive their answers, but be thrown down like Capernaum into the depths, and subjected to mockery and schadenfreude and the occasional answer that seems helpful but really and truly is so very wrong.”

So Kepple wrote installments of his “Your Search Engine Queries Answered” feature, but to his surprise the multitude did not scatter upon the face of the Earth, but rather kept visiting his site in increasing numbers. And it was good – until a day far in the future, when Kepple found his scheduled stay in Purgatory had been markedly increased, and he had to carry heavy rocks and deal with the purifying fire and watch endless reruns of Three’s Company until his eyes bled.


What's that? You think I'm kidding. Oh, no I'm not. I can assure you that even though July is just two days old, the searches that have been coming in are downright -- I mean, they'd be unbelievable if I didn't see them with my own eyes. I mean, look at this first one:

QUERY: captain planet planeteers knitting patterns

ANSWER: Wait, what? Captain Planet? Knitting patterns? Captain Planet is bad enough but Captain Planet knitting patterns -- I mean, come on. The show's over. The kids, unless their parents are rabid environmentalists who live in the Pacific Northwest, won't be enthused. Besides, while all cartoons have an element of ridiculousness in them, Captain Planet was particularly ridiculous. You know, because a bunch of teenagers acting like a mini-United Nations are naturally the best choice to save the world from the supposed depradations of nuclear power and gunky engine buildup.

Besides, as this clever video shows, The Power Was Not in Fact Yours. The Power is ... Ted Turner's!

But moving on --- well, before we do that, dig Robot Chicken's "Charlie Brown Special" parody. Best line: "I fear that having a positive attitude, with strong Christian overtones, won't save us this time -- I said, strong Christian overtones!"

QUERY: florida gators

ANSWER: Well, you won't find much about the Gators here at The Rant, but you'll find plenty of information here about the team.

QUERY: couple misbehaving at stadium

ANSWER: If a couple is misbehaving at a stadium -- by which one means being involved in activities that don't involve watching the sporting event at hand -- it is perfectly acceptable to ask a stadium usher to intervene and have the usher ask politely for them to stop. Barring that, throw your hot dog at them.

QUERY: kansas city police videotape romantic encounters in mall parking lot

ANSWER: Generally speaking, it's a poor idea to engage in romantic encounters in places where the local vice squad can actively arrest participants in said encounters for not bothering to get a hotel room.

QUERY: sweatshirt coca-cola jesus christ

ANSWER: Now that's a Midwestern trifecta of clothing-design genius!

QUERY: can you catch the ball off the wall in the endzone in arena football

ANSWER: Yes -- you -- can. This is part of the enjoyable fun of arenaball.

QUERY: danger of tab drink

ANSWER: This depends. The regular Tab drink is good for you and has saccarhine, which everyone loves. The new Tab Energy drink, on the other hand, may cause those who drink it an unfortunate case of "trying to fit in with the crowd but failing miserably at it."

QUERY: eeob haunted

ANSWER: The Old Executive Office Building -- now known as the EEOB, for Eisenhower -- is in fact haunted. It is rumored the ghosts that haunt its hallowed halls include John Nance Garner, Raymond Moley, and Harold Stassen, the last of whom is occasionally seen in the dead of night around at that entrance heading over to the West Wing, looking rather forlorn. Also, the entire Nixon Cabinet.

QUERY: vernors in new hampshire

ANSWER: You can't get Vernors in New Hampshire. It's Vernors! As such, it's only available in the Midwest. Still, you wouldn't want to bring any here. The New Englanders are already angry at the Midwest for our power-plant emissions and if you brought in Vernors they'd really get angry and suddenly the Government's fuel-mileage standards would go to 60 mpg. Let's not provoke them.

QUERY: planning a cheap hippie wedding

ANSWER: First off, in all seriousness, I must congratulate you on having an inexpensive wedding. There is nothing wrong with having a nice wedding but generally speaking people these days spend far too much money on the events. That said, I'm concerned about this whole "hippie wedding" thing. Many of your guests will undoubtedly not be hippies, so it would be advisable to:

* spare them the agony of listening to bad self-written vows, particularly if those vows include some silliness about reducing the couple's carbon footprint.
* have at least one entree with meat -- glorious, wonderful, fat-laden meat -- for guests who are not vegetarian and who think organic farming is a recipe for contracting salmonella.
* have the guests forego their commitments to the environment for just one day and insist they wear traditional deodorant, particularly if the ceremony takes place in a stifling hot church.
* ask for gifts that are easy and useful for all involved: such as those newfangled low-wattage eco-friendly light bulbs.

QUERY: living very cheaply

ANSWER: It's surprisingly easy to live cheaply. Basically, you have to spend less than you earn. Now, after that, you basically have to lower your fixed expenses as much as you can. One you've done that, you save a bunch afterwards. The end result is that you have a nice cushion on which you can fall back if there's any hiccups in life, and you don't have to worry about paying various outlandish bills.

QUERY: low carb low sugar diets and night terrors

ANSWER: That sounds like a reasonable and expected side effect to such a wretched diet. Your body is clearly screaming out for Haagen-Dazs, so treat yourself to a scoop before bedtime once in a while.

QUERY: what is the number one thing men do to aggravate women

ANSWER: I'd have to say leaving the toilet seat up, although there are so many other things: prolonged unemployment, drunkenness, carousing until the wee small hours of the morning, losing one's pay at the track, slouching about the house -- I mean, we could spend hours listing contenders.

QUERY: which hit eighties movie featured rejuvenated senior citizens ?

ANSWER: Red Dawn.

QUERY: as a man i hate mice

ANSWER: A good thing, too! Mice spread disease and cause property damage. They are an utter scourge and must be wiped out with extreme prejudice.

QUERY: sample letter to movie critics

ANSWER: Dear Movie Critic: I am shocked and appalled at your (miserable / illogical / ungodly stupid) review of (film). Everyone knows that (said film) is a (masterpiece of cinema / crime against humanity) that should (be shown again and again in college town movie theatres / be shown again and again in college town movie theatres). How you ever got to be a critic of anything is absolutely amazing. Please do us all a favor and (go back to writing on the metro desk / take up more fitting employment, such as a convenience store clerk).

QUERY: americans stop buying french products

ANSWER: Uh, I think M Sarkozy's election officially put the French boycott to bed. Which is good, because I like Roquefort and pinot noir and Michelin tires.

QUERY: where s bile stored if you do not have a gall bladder?

ANSWER: It's not. It goes straight into the intestines, which can cause a bit of irritation for those who have had their gall bladders removed. Of course, this also may explain why The Rant has not expressed any emotion other than cranky sarcasm for the past few years.

QUERY: strange brew tavern topless pictures

ANSWER: If this is the same tavern I'm thinking of, I can't believe for a moment the pictures came out in that dimly lit, smoke-filled establishment. Apologies.

QUERY: minnesota viking sending naked text message

ANSWER: This should surprise no one.

QUERY: steelers baby gifts

ANSWER: A good idea -- but be careful. After all, for all you know, the recipient of said gifts may grow up to become a fan of a different team (*cough* the Browns *cough*) and may in later life be traumatized by said baby gifts, particularly if there are pictures floating about showing said baby wearing said gifts. I know, I know -- what are the chances of someone giving up their allegiance to the beloved Steelers for a second-rate, struggling franchise?

QUERY: photos and pictures of ben roethlisberger being sacked

ANSWER: You have SO visited the wrong site.

QUERY: bud light real men of genius cincinnati bengals

ANSWER: We salute you, Mr Hapless Cincinnati Bengals Fan! ("Mr Hapless Cincinnati Bengals Fan!") You're there every year, hoping against hope to beat the Steelers in the playoffs. ("Got those lotto tickets!") ... of course, I kid. Bengals fans who are interested in their team's players will find more information here.

QUERY: as an customer support executive how can i make customer satsify

ANSWER: OK, first off, let's get something straight. You're not an executive. You do not have a company car, an expense account, a country club membership, or a key to the executive washroom. Hell, you don't even get to use the middle managers' washrooms. You're making an hourly wage.

However, here are a few tips. First, do what customers want -- within reason -- with a minimum of feedback. Second, don't use any corporate or internal jargon when responding to a question. Third, if you don't know something, say so. Fourth, be friendly and polite if the customer is as well.

QUERY: sarah lucas i can eat a lobster impeccably

ANSWER: I'm glad Ms Lucas can do so, because I certainly can't. Indeed, to this day my family still talks about the Drawn Butter Incident as if it resulted in the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand.

QUERY: throwing out cigarette window freeway ticket fine california

ANSWER: That would be $271 plus court costs. Sacramento thanks you.

QUERY: if there was one defining attribute of the patriots success it was coaching synergy. the public's attention the new england patriots' first pro-football championship offers a refreshing example of the power of true teamwork.

ANSWER: Oh, shut up.

QUERY: what the world needs now is love sweet love it s the only thing that there s just too little of what the world needs now is love sweet love no not just for some but for everyone

ANSWER: Oh, shut up.

QUERY: burgled stolen lava lamps

ANSWER: Attention all cars, attention all cars, suspect is wearing bell-bottoms AND has his shirt unbuttoned to the waist. Assume ... well, dangerous, anyway.

QUERY: maureen dowd times select content how we re animalistic -- in good ways and bad

ANSWER: One of the nice things about "Times Select" is that it's put all of its opinion columnists "behind the pay wall." This means that I haven't been exposed to a Maureen Dowd column in years, for which I am very grateful to the New York Times Co. Inc. You know, because nothing says "paper of record" like a column in which the writer has trouble constructing a decent paragraph and whose insight consists of observations that any college freshman with an iBook could've come up with.

QUERY: I hate Peyton Manning

ANSWER: Heh. Did you know that if you Google "I hate Peyton Manning" that this site is ranked 10th out of 384,000 possible hits? It ranks seventh out of like 3,800 if you put the phrase in quotes. I'm proud that my utter disdain, contempt and scorn for Mr Problem with Protection has been so noticed. I hate Peyton Manning.

QUERY: stupid raider fans

ANSWER: I don't think Raiders fans are stupid. Hapless, yes; tormented, yes; kicked in the teeth one too many times, yes. After all, you'd be angry too if you had Al Davis in charge of your team. But while some Raiders fans are obnoxious, classless boors with a penchant for drunkenness and doing strange things in support of their team, one can't say Raiders fans are stupid. Besides, they're Raiders fans. The way Oakland's been these past few years, you've got a better shot rooting for Detroit.

(Fire Millen).

QUERY: really inexpensive cleveland browns t-shirts

ANSWER: Wait until November or December. You won't have too much trouble at that point.

QUERY: example of predestination

ANSWER: Super Bowl III -- Jets 16, Colts 7.

QUERY: starship song played in for a better life commercial

ANSWER: We built this business on rock and roll!

QUERY: bad egg sulphur smell linked to spiritualism

ANSWER: Well, yeah -- generally because the smell is linked to conjuring up horrible demons from the world of the dead. But you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs.

QUERY: in r.i. does a landlord have the right to refuse renting an apartment eo an owner of a pet companion dog

ANSWER: I have no idea, but it's Rhode Island, so I'm guessing the answer is No. In fact, I'll go so far as to suggest that about the only right landlords in Rhode Island have is to prevent prospective tenants from crashing a unit en masse and demanding squatters' rights to the place.

QUERY: united states wants to rule the world

ANSWER: We've got enough problems as is without having to rule more than six billion angry, disaffected people who already blame us for all their troubles.

QUERY: $3.75 for a coke at the movie theatre

ANSWER: There's a very good reason we don't want to rule the world -- we're already paying $3.75 for a Coke at the movies and God knows we don't want it going any higher. I have to admit, though, this is one reason why I don't go to the movies nearly as often as I did before. I don't mind paying $8 or $9 to watch a movie, even if it's crappy (which provides the extra bonus of having something to blog about). But when one adds in the concessions costs, the price of a ticket goes up to $15 or $16 with the purchase of just one popcorn and soda. That's a little steep for a movie that, seven times out of ten, isn't all that great anyway.

Anyway, that's it for this edition of Your Search Engine Queries Answered! Tune in next time when we discuss ... well, I don't know yet, but I'm sure it will be fascinating as always. Until then, keep an eye out for more fun content here at The Rant -- your Maximum Leader for making fun of people's stupid search engine requests.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at July 2, 2007 10:45 PM | TrackBack
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