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  INCOMING! JULY 11, 2005.  


AD: TECH 05, a conference for digital mass marketers, begins today in Chicago. I can only guess that this is where all the people who email me ads for boner enhancers get together to measure the success of their sales techniques. I predict mass disappointment. The thing is: All of those emails flying into my bulk folder -- they lack the personal touch. If you people are really serious about me growing my cock, you're gonna have get up in my face about it. Didn't you see that movie where William H. Macy went door to door acting retarded? Get a few short bus grads like that on the street, and you'll be moving more sugar pill sex boosters that you can count. I call it "specializing" your sales force, and it's a technique that could turn every neighborhood in America into an erogenous zone!

Speaking of measurements, Bush and company are supposed to be turning in some of their own today. Specifically, a "comprehensive set of performance indicators and measures of stability and security" with regards to Iraq. This is according to a provision in the defense spending bill that went through Congress in May. As I interpret it, I think the provision means they're supposed to explicitly state the conditions under which we'll get the fuck out of there, and how they plan to measure those conditions -- something a wee bit more detailed than "the United States will stay as long as necessary."

Good luck getting that info, Capitol Hill! Under this administration, it's about as likely as getting "In God We Trust" removed from our currency -- a phrase that was placed there on this day in 1955, one year after "Under God" was inserted into the Pledge of Allegiance like a slick penis enhanced with anti-Commie righteousness. Good thing, too. Were it not for the religious references on our money, people would've continued to use it to indulge sloth, envy, lust and gluttony. Thankfully, money is now used exclusively as a means to buy



cute puppies for minority orphans with HIV. Living in the future is awesome!

Also on this day in 1804, Vice President Aaron Burr killed Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton in a duel, setting the stage for one of the best "Got Milk?" commercials I've ever seen.




Not that I'll be drinking milk for much longer. An article by a Stanford University professor is scheduled to appear today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences outlining exactly how terrorists could contaminate the U.S. milk supply with botulism. This article has all kinds of great stuff in it -- how milk is pasteurized, the amount of botulism toxin it takes to kill a human (versus smoothing out those unwanted wrinkles), the heat sensitivity of the toxin and the capacities of milk silos in the U.S. Now, I'm about as big a popular science freak as you're likely to find, but I probably won't read this article -- just seems a little dry for my taste. In fact, I can't help but wonder what kind of audience would actually be interested in learning this kind of specific, detailed information about how to poison Americans. Hm… Oh well -- I'm sure the National Academy will eventually find its audience.

What will I be reading this summer? Why, Make Love the Bruce Campbell Way, of course. A semi-autobiographical fiction novel by the star of Evil Dead and Bubba Ho-tep, this book may be the first reading experience most Ain't It Cool News talk-backers have had since the novelization of Revenge of the Sith. And if any of those fanboys happen to live in Albuquerque, they're in luck; Bruce himself will be appearing tonight at Page One Books as part of his "summer of love" tour. Anybody reading aloud from the Necronomicon during the actor's visit will be thought of as totally



hilarious by his friends.




You know that scene near the end of Evil Dead II when the giant portal opens in space and time and starts sucking trees, a car and, eventually, Bruce Campbell, into it? Well, that's sort of what monsoon season can look like in Arizona, a season that some scientists have predicted will begin today. During the worst of the monsoon storms, giant walls of dust dance through the valleys, eventually turning into high volume thunderstorms that can flood the crap out of everything and, in rare instances, send people hurtling back through time into Medieval Europe where they must fight a race of skeleton people.

Of course, the monsoon storms are nothing compared to the hurricanes that Florida has to routinely endure, and the launch of space shuttle Discovery today could be delayed by Hurricane Dennis, which, like most hurricanes glutted on Cuban houses and human misery, really wants to go to Disneyworld. The Discovery launch would be the first since the 2003 Columbia disaster, in which seven astronauts were killed as the shuttle fell apart during reentry. Here's hoping that the shuttle gets off without trouble and that its crew returns to Earth safe and sound.

Incidentally -- to all of you mass marketers in


Chicago -- have you ever noticed how the state of Florida looks like a giant limp dick? Might be a good market for the retard boner squad to infiltrate. Just brainstorming: You guys are the experts.




It's Bastille Day in France, a holiday that Chirac will no doubt spend feeling like an asshole for making fun of British cuisine only days before London's transit system was bombed and many of her citizens murdered. Today marks the one week anniversary of that horrible event, heartbreaking yet somehow not surprising in the post-9/11, tsunami bitch slap world we've all suddenly found ourselves living in. It's not that pain and suffering were just invented -- this week marks the 10th anniversary of the massacre in Bosnia in which almost 8,000 men and boys were killed, in fact -- it's just that it's so close to home. Hopefully, we'll all come out of it with more empathy and a better idea of how to protect the innocent. I have a hard time being optimistic.

I do, however, have no problem escaping into fantasy worlds in which explosions usually result in superpowers instead of death, and that's why you'll find me at the San Diego Comic-Con, which begins today! It's tough to worry over all the miserable things happening in the world when one can watch chicks dressed as She-Hulk roam the streets of the Gaslamp Quarter accompanied by lispy, bespectacled 40-year-olds still stuck somewhere between the goth and ren faire stages of their wardrobes. For comic book and role-playing game nerds, being in San Diego during the Comic-Con is sort of like being gay and living in West Hollywood. I mean, it's the same in that they feel free to pursue their alternative lifestyles flamboyantly in a community of acceptance. In terms of sex, I'm pretty sure it's the polar opposite.




Nevertheless, seeing DC fans break burgers with Marvel fans -- man, the people of the world could learn a lesson. Especially if they were to stick around to see convention speaker Bruce Campbell, who arrives today.




Meanwhile, in Vegas, another subculture that favors table games over mobility will be enjoying its day in the sun. Today is the final day of the World Series of Poker, in which one Unibomber-looking weirdo will win upwards of $5 million and the respect of other Unibomber-looking weirdos around the globe. Five million damn dollars. Shit, at 200 dollars a pop, that's 25,000 new puppies! This is gonna be one sweet weekend for the orphans!

On this day in 1988, another million-dollar gamble was perpetrated in Hollywood when the action movie Die Hard was released. Despite worries that its TV actor star wouldn't be able to carry the movie, it went on to become a huge blockbuster, launching the career of Bruce Willis, spawning a series of knock-offs and forcing me to write like I work for fucking "Entertainment Tonight." Jesus.

Die Hard is a good bit of escapism, and for all those who've ever wished they could single-handedly knock the crap out of the shitheads who keep blowing people up all over the world, it's a great bit of escapism. I know everybody's eager to see what Tim Burton did with his retread of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory this weekend and whether it'll top his ingenious remake of Planet



of the Apes, but if you've got the time, and you're feeling a little helpless, I recommend picking up a DVD of Die Hard and settling in with a cold beverage for the evening. Watching John McClane kick ass all over Nakatomi Plaza can make anybody feel safe from the world, if only for a few hours.

Just make sure that beverage isn't milk.


Chad Fifer is a writer in Los Angeles and is one of the minds behind


INCOMING! runs every Monday on The Black Table.