The Culture Bunker

Even though we’d swap Lou for Joey in a heartbeat, we’re somewhat relieved the rumors of Mr. Reed’s demise were exaggerated. Not because we give a rat’s ass—but it would have been unbearable to pore over the endless encomiums and eulogies. Sure, he’s earned them, but that was a long, long time ago. Now he may as well be Paul Simon. With a sunnier disposition.

One guy who won’t be croaking any time soon is John Popper. Way to go, man! Zone, Sugarbusters, or Atkins? . . . We’ve asked this before, but when’s the new Hater record coming out? Kee-rist, it’s taking almost as long as Donna Tartt‘s second novel. Philip Roth has written 17 books about conflicted old men who have lots and lots of sex in the same period of time—or so we understand from various reviews in glossy magazines.

Hey, would anyone like to buy a tiny wireless video camera?That Orrin Hatch is an asshole. . . . Coming soon to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: a tribute to Stuart Sutcliffe. Fuckin’ hell. We wouldn’t be surprised if they inducted him—and before the New York Dolls. . . . To note the release of yet another dishwater-dull new R.E.M. record, we’d like to take this opportunity to quote from their very own “Shiny Happy People”—the Fatima Mansions version, that is: “Fuck your show business.”

Well, so long, farewell, and goodbye to the XFL. It sure was a blast. Will any of us ever forget that first “scramble” for the opening possession? We’ll spend the rest of our lives cherishing that indelible moment when He Hate Me scampered across our psyche. How about that classic Jesse Ventura-Rusty Tillman feud? And will we ever know greater joy than that second glimpse (’cause the first week’s girls weren’t that hot) of cheerleader cleavage? Seriously, how are we supposed to take Matt Hasselbeck seriously after seeing Tommy Maddox? Anyway, we wish former Chicago Enforcer Aaron Humphrey good luck in his tryout with the Los Angeles Jets. Michael has loved the Jets for more decades than he would care to mention, but we really, really hate L.A. So it would serve those fuckers right if they had to embrace the pain of following that team.

We’ve always been a big believer in the theory that no matter how hot they are, someone somewhere is tired of them. But honestly—does Stephan Jenkins think he can do better than Charlize Theron? Such a person does not, in fact, exist. Though we’re sure he was very threatened by the fact that she’s way more talented than him. And that’s no joke. . . . Here’s Robert Christgau (quoted in Salon) on the notion that Radiohead are the best band in the world: “Bull fucking shit. They suck.” And to think it took us more than 800 words to express the exact same sentiment. But that’s why he’s the Dean.

The Mountain Dew Slurpee: an invention whose time has come. Amazing it took them so long, in fact. But we are disturbed by the new Mountain Dew Code Red, not because it’s got more caffeine (whoo-hoo!) but because it’s Pepsi’s attempt to create a soft drink for, well, black people. “That’s the whole mission that we have, trying to extend the excitement into the urban centers,” Charlee Taylor-Hines, Pepsi’s “director of urban and ethnic marketing” told The New York Times. The red color and cherry flavor came about, the Times article continues, because “conventional wisdom in the soft drink business states that people from minority groups favor sweet, fruity flavors.” So why didn’t they just come out with a new grape soda?

Stereophonics suck. . . . The commercials for Six Feet Under call to mind one word: Showtime. That talentless Alan Ball might be penetrating his boyfriend with his very own Oscar, but if American Beauty had been directed by, say, Stephen Herek, we wouldn’t be discussing him right now. . . .The Motley Crue book has gotta be a hoot, but 100 hours of interviews? Man, life’s too short to spend 25 hours with Mick Mars. BTW Neil, how’s that stand-up thing going? . . . We stumbled onto that Nerve Q&A with Li’l Stevie Malkmus and his insanely hot girlfriend the other day. Now it all makes sense. It takes a special woman to not be the second-prettiest person in a photograph with that guy.