Thursday, December 13, 2012

Thursday Roundup

Favorites and duds from today's commenting.

Favorites, in no particular order:

Here's a fantastic comment from Bevraj of Choice in the Kris Humphries post. The moment you read the words "Dear Kim" at the top of this comment, you have a sense of where it's going, and the fun, from there, is in the details. I can't wait until Bevraj of Choice moves back to the real part of the world so he can spend all day posting comments on a sports blog like a grownup.

This joke, from BronzeHammer in the Kris Humphries post, is wonderful. It's possible I like this stuff much more than most Deadspin commenters. This is the sort of one-of-a-kind humor that I look forward to reading on Deadspin. I like a good pull as much as the next guy, but the off-the-wall stuff, the totally unique angles that show up from time to time, it's those jokes that keep me coming back. Way back when, years and years ago when I first made a commenting account and well before I got up the courage to really use it much, I would just marvel at the bizarre and obscure and abstract and totally hilarious exchanges and threads that would develop between the funniest commenters. In the years since, I'm happy to say it seems like Deadspin's commenters have gotten stranger and less predictable and more creative. None of that is meant to suggest that BronzeHammer's joke is irrelevant to the post (not that there would be anything wrong with that). On the contrary. The disastrous marriage to Kim Kardashian will always be a large part of what we remember about Kris Humphries, and this joke makes good use of that fact. But it doesn't settle for a reference, nor does it simply preempt other Kim Kardashian jokes. It takes a new angle, giving the joke personality and action. I love it. Great comment.

I laughed aloud at this joke from Raysism in the Maurice Clarett post. The component pieces in this joke are mostly just an excuse for the "and begins tossing _________'s salad" line. I mean, it's funnier for being Lenny Dykstra and Jim Cramer, but this joke revolves around that surprise, the unexpected incorporation of some genuinely yucky imagery. And? It's great. I also chuckled at this Greg Oden dick joke in the Sam Bowie post. Everyone knew where this one was going, but it's well-executed, and that makes all the difference.

Here's RMJ=H's best joke of the day, in the Maurice Clarett post. It has originality, it has elegance, it has a terrific sense of humor, it is fresh and wonderful and I like it. What it doesn't have, however, is 86 +1s. Eighty-six. This joke, in the Bode Miller post, this Left Eye joke, this version of a joke we've seen probably two or three times on Deadspin, this is the one that got almost a hundred +1s. It's a fine joke. I chuckled at it. Specifically, I read it, chuckled, said "ouch" and moved on. I would bet every penny to my name that RMJ=H agrees that it's not remotely the best or funniest joke he's dropped this week, probably not even in his top five. I'm not saying it's unworthy of every +1 it got: every person who gave it a +1 liked it, and it is very much the kind of joke that appeals to a broad audience. It's a good comment. But it's not the Comment of the Day, by virtue of the fact that it is not the funniest joke from today. Also, here's a funny Idiot joke in the Pantomimed Double Blowjob post. RMJ=H had quite the day today.

Here's a funny thread in the Pantomimed Double Blowjob post, featuring Madoffs Mets, Danelorgy, SavetoFavorites, ScottMitchellReport, onlyASK, and others. Couple of really funny entries in there.

I don't know how a person could not laugh at this ridiculous sequence from SavetoFavorites in the Bode Miller post. It's just so silly and fun. Funny from start to finish.

Here's a hysterical recontextualization from Same Sad Echo in the Bode Miller post. It would be easy enough to make this comment with a line like "friends and family were impressed with Dick Clark's optimism to the very end", but it's just nowhere near as funny as exposing the reference in a personal sentiment prompted by the italicized line. I'm still marveling at the instincts of Deadspin's joke-makers. I'm making this joke today's Comment of the Day. Also, there goes the last of my credibility.

Here's a one-line zinger from Gamboa Constrictor in the Josh Brent post. Sharp, funny, succinct, successful. Good stuff.

Body by Bacardi showed up today with this very strong Mets dig in the Torii Hunter post. So smart. Stick around, will ya?

Total Fucking Duds

Yeah, I'm not doing duds tonight.

You guys are the best. Nighty-night.


  1. Couple of points:

    1. I never, ever meant to steal the Left Eye joke from anyone. When I typed in the joke, I did not even think twice about it being a copycat. However, after I saw the link Phin posted in DUAN, I knew for certain that I'd seen that joke before (was it a COTF, Phin?). Perhaps that's why it came to me so quickly. I am sorry and embarrassed that it was a copycat joke. I hope you don't think that's the way I operate. It's not.

    2. I completely agree with you on it not being my best joke of the day. I told Ray and Hammerclaw that I liked the blow job pantomime joke better. You liked the Heisman joke better. Whatever.

    3. Who are all these people telling me that the comment was "Old-school Deadspin commenting"? WTF dude? Where have you been? Do you even know what that means?

    4. It's a damned shame you didn't include this joke from Ray - it was his best of the day (in my opinion) and one of the rare instances that Kinja made for a better joke than would have occurred in the old system: It was certainly my COTD.

    1. Oh man, I never for a second thought you stole the joke. Not at all. It's a joke that covers previously covered ground, but c'mon, there are literally dozens of those every day on Deadspin. A Left Eye is dead joke is not different from a Brett Favre has a small dick joke - both punchlines are familiar, but it still comes down to execution.

      I included the joke in the Favorites not because it got 86 +1s, but because I liked it. And, well, because it got 86 +1s. It's a very good joke. I totally agree with Raysism below, there's no reason to stay away from the Left Eye is dead line so long as you can execute it, and you executed it.

      I missed the Raysism joke yesterday, but I can't figure out why. When I went to that post, the only part of the joke that was visible was the opening photo. This seems to happen to me a lot with Kinja, where Deadspin will leap forward and back in time, sometimes showing all replies and sometimes showing only replies from two hours ago and sometimes showing no replies. And it seems to happen more on Chrome than on Firefox. At any rate, yeah, it's great. I hate that I missed it.

    2. The Real Phin, For RealDecember 14, 2012 at 12:37 PM

      I NEVER THOUGHT YOU STOLE IT EITHER. I was pointing out it had been done before, that's all. I thought yours was well worded and funny.

  2. Shitehawk, I agree with everything you wrote. My quick thoughts, for the little they are worth:

    -- Left Eye/Andre Rison/arson/driving death jokes are part of the Deadspin public domain. Dozens have been made previously, and dozens are yet to come. RMJ=H has no reason to apologize or feel bad. If the opportunity presented itself, I would make a Left Eye joke tomorrow with no hesitation. (But only if a better O AN HE SEXY joke were not available.)

    -- There are jokes that involve previously-covered ground, and then there are jokes that involve previously-covered ground that are pitch-fucking-perfect and completely relevant to the post. RMJ=H’s was the latter.

    -- If anyone deserves to hold a +1 record of 'roided-out McGwire proportions, it’s RMJ=H. He’s one of the best and most tenured guys here. That being said, if Gamboa makes a good joke today, I want him pee tested.

    -- Man, burners just love it when they get the joke. It’s clear that the formula for a 40+ reply joke in the Kinja era is: (1) make it short and tight, (2) needs to be of a death/sexual/bodily function nature, (3) the subject matter/cultural reference needs to be simple enough for your average dummy to get it, but (4) the joke needs to be hidden enough so that the average dummy gets the psychic pleasure of figuring it out.

    1. Thanks for your input, man. I completely agree with each of your points. Except the Gamboa part. He's a beautiful, delicate flower, meant to be cherished, and don't you dare say otherwise. Also, he drools a little when he sleeps, and these night-vision goggles are incredible.

      I'm really bummed I missed your eclipse joke yesterday. Seems like Kinja just threw the cloak of invisibility right over it. I'll give it an extra mention tonight. It absolutely belongs in the Favorites.

    2. That's a pretty good summary of what leads to boffo +1s in the age of Kinja. It's funny, I remember what killed this blog the first time was cheese mac being a dick an argument about the deleterious effect of having the +1 devalued. I think we all agree that there is now almost no correlation between the number of +1s received and the quality of the joke. The combination of the Kinja positioning algorithm, natural sheeple impulses, and the huge influx of people with no appreciation for what once would have been prized material on Deadspin has basically combined to produce an environment where the quantity of +1s is a more or less meaningless statistic (and I don't say this just because I've never gotten 87 +1s).

      Getting some +1s is still important. But this joke, which earned something like 60 +1s all in if you read through the various Kinja sub-threads, wasn't even my best of that day. The difference between a joke that gets 3 +1s and one that gets 47 is more or less negligible or even an inverse relationship.

      Also, please give me 87 +1s sometime.

    3. You know what? Fuck it, I just re-read my Kluwe comment and it is outstanding. Give it more +1s.

      Also, the cheese mac thing was supposed to be a strike thru, but it wouldn't accept the actual HTML, so I put in fake HTML to make it obvious that it was a joke, and that just vanished I guess, so now it looks like a weird non-sequitor at best and a genuine rip at Sean at worst, neither of which was my intention.

    4. @IMG

      I feel like you're probably joking about . . . well, much of this, but especially the part about cheese-mac killing this blog. You couldn't possibly be more wrong about that. He and I had many long back-and-forths about different Deadspin topics, including the +1, and those exchanges with him were unquestionably my favorite part of maintaining this blog the first time around. Exchanging opinions and fleshing out ideas and locking horns with a ridiculously smart and talented joke-maker, that was a bonus of writing this silly thing that I never anticipated. Cheese-mac was a friend to this blog.

      I really don't want anyone any longer thinking any part of that is true. You can't imagine how not true it is. If anything, exchanges with cheese-mac kept me hooked well past the point where maintaining MBA had started to chew dramatically into my personal and professional life.

      Now, let us never speak of this again.

      As to the +1 thing, I still think +1s are valuable, maybe more than ever. Deadspin's good commenters have to demonstrate to newer commenters and burners what kinds of comments are appreciated. Before, grey comments stayed grey and pink comments stayed pink and there was no reason to worry about setting an example because the approval system gave us power over the content. Now? We simply have to use the +1 as a tool to influence commenting. RMJ=H's joke may not have been the best from yesterday, but close to a hundred Deadspin readers liked it enough to sign in and give it some kind of praise, and each of those +1s is perfectly valid. I think Raysism hit the nail on the head, I think this joke had a perfect blend of characteristics to make it funny and accessible to a broad audience. Nothing wrong with that.


      That should get you started.

    5. I knew it! Thanks anyway for giving me an opportunity to put that to bed once and for all.

    6. I need 67 more.

      - Evander Holyfield, picking up child support waiver forms

  3. I couldn't find ray's eclipse joke last night. The post isn't displaying. Could be why it wasn't included.

    1. Couldn't find the eclipse joke? Must have been blocked out somehow.

  4. Shitehawk, this is a perfect post and description of RMJ's material from yesterday. Ray adds good points as well. These +1 cascades are difficult to figure out, although Ray gives a good series of criteria. I laughed at the Left Eye joke and +1'd it, but I can probably think of 10 RMJ jokes from the last month that I found to be much funnier.

    Sometimes it gets difficult to sort through your points of references and whether or not you are trodding on familiar DS ground. I had forgotten the exact Phin 'Left Eye' joke, but I knew I had seen something of that ilk before. Similarly, earlier this week I made a joke revolving around someone's lack of eyebrows and juxtaposed razed/raised for the joke. About 15 minutes after submitting it, I just had a gnawing feeling that I had seen it recently before, and possibly on DS. If I could have redacted it at that point, I would have. If I did indeed stomp on someone else's joke, I promise it wasn't intentional and I do apologize. My point is, we sit here and read hundreds of jokes a week from funny people on this site and invariably some of those thoughts are going to stick and their identities become muddled in our malt, hops, and THC-enameled neurons.

    At any rate, the comments have been pretty good in the last few weeks and it is great to see regular contributions from Bevraj, EMS, Gamboa and others once again.
    And, as always, thanks for your great work, MS.

    1. Yeah, it happens. How could it not? I don't hold it against RMJ=H or his comment that it's similar to a comment from a year ago. I clumsily tried to make the point that, though the comment got a million +1s, that doesn't necessarily make it RMJ=H's funniest joke, just his most broadly appealing. I wish I'd left out the part about the joke having been made a few times before. I honestly don't care at all about that. If I thought he had stolen the joke, I probably would have pulled out the hyphenated insults, but I absolutely do not.

      Thanks for the kind words.

  5. Commenting renaissance? Commenting renaissance.