Thursday, May 21, 2009

Idol chatter

Don't tell me you didn't catch the American Idol season finale last night, because I know you did! Just like me, you've been watching all year, so excited to see who our next Idol would be. And let me tell you, am I relieved or what!

I just have to say that I'm glad Kris won. It's so nice to see a handsome, good, Christian boy like that come out on top in this country every once in a while. You turn on your television to almost any channel these days and all you see is promiscuity--boys and girls, boys and boys, girls and who-knows-what. Even shows like Grey's Anatomy are doing it now, trying to cozy up to the gays and boost their ratings. Of course, that's set in Seattle, so we should have guessed from the beginning that some kind of loopy communist nonsense would come out of it in the end. They think we don't realize what's going on, but it's obvious. And frankly, it disgusts me.

So imagine my delight to see Kris beat Adam last night! I didn't think it was possible, but we really turned out the votes--almost a hundred million! I really have to hand it to you all, because without us there was no way Kris possibly could have won. I mean, did you hear Adam on that K*** song? (I'm sorry, but I will not type out a band name that stands for something as horrible as "Knights in Satan's Service.") His voice is so amazing! I mean, seriously, without our support, Kris wouldn't have stood a chance. I'm just glad we get to vote, instead of letting the judges decide who is best. I heard Simon on Oprah say that he thought Adam should win. Boy did we dodge a bullet on that one! I mean Adam can really sing, but it's such a shame he's using it for such terrible means, trying to advertise his homosexuality to all of the young people that watch American Idol, trying to make himself look like any of the rest of us and confuse our children.

I mean, I didn't even know at first. I thought he might be, with all the eye makeup and the nail polish. I had this nagging feeling that he might be a gay, and of course, I was right. But he did a good job of hiding it, slipping it in subtly so no one would notice until we were all voting for him, letting him win. That's what they do. That's what they always do: act normal and nice and seem just like anyone else until we accept them and then they spring it on us. And then what? I think you know. It starts with an "H" and ends in eternal damnation.

I'm just glad that we showed the Fox Network that we wouldn't stand for it anymore. They have to realize that Kris' win wasn't at all about the contest, it was a protest against Hollywood's support of the homosexual agenda. They think that they can just keep feeding us this stuff and that eventually we'll just shrug and say, "Sure, whatever. I guess it's fine," and then start to let them ruin our churches and our morals and babysit our kids. But we showed them! We're not so weak!

So congratulations, Kris! And congratulations to the rest of you, brothers and sisters in Christ! For standing up for what you believe in and making it known to the nation! Maybe next time they'll think before they try to push their decadent secularism on us through the TV. Maybe they'll finally realize that we still make up the majority here in America (and will for quite awhile, if Mr. Obama bin Laden takes some precious time away from his mosque and decides to build that wall along our southern border) and that we aren't going to take all this leftist propaganda sitting down.

Maybe they'll even bring back 7th Heaven!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Swill O'Whiney

Flipping through the channels tonight, I had the misfortunate of stumbling upon an episode of The O'Reilly Factor. There was a time in my life (about tenth grade) that I kind of liked Bill O'Reilly, surprisingly enough. I read his book The No Spin Zone and appreciated his unfettered honesty and actually, his solution to the prison overpopulation problem (mostly expanding the old license-plate stamping operation into more and varied menial labor to make prisoners earn their keep). But that doesn't alleviate the fact that the man is completely insane and more of a rumor-monger than Dr. Phil, Oprah and my mother combined.

Tonight's show was about parents and how unbelievably bad they are these days. They don't read the Bible, they drink beer, they smoke weed--and all right in front of their kids! With two correspondents flanking him, O'Reilly went off on a rant about how much worse parents are in 2009 than they even were in--gasp!--1969! Woodstock! Brown acid! Marijuana and tie-dye! Yes, in this age of selfishness, we've even outdone our pot-smoking, baby-booming parents and their feel-good parenting ways. How? Well, other than cell phones, Facebook, "emo" and body modifications, we do drugs too! And apparently we encourage our kids to do them too?

Or at least we "exploit" them. That was O'Reilly's focus as he played a clip from one of my recent favorite internet videos, "David After the Dentist." In the video, a father in the front seat of his car asks his son, who recently just had oral surgery some questions as the boy is still in a different galaxy from being under. The video is definitely good for a laugh, with little David totally freaking out, questioning his existence and screaming uncontrollably at one point. But as for exploitation... really? That's what made your radar tonight, Bill? A months-old video of a kid high on nitrous oxide after getting stitches in his gums?

I mean, I could understand if David's father had just convinced his innocent son to drop acid or something--that would be horrible and absolutely worth the outrage. But this was a kid after a routine medical procedure, and frankly, it's kind of cute. The dad isn't doing anything bad to him, he's just having a good giggle, and I'm sure that afterwards, David thought the whole thing was pretty damn funny as well. I still remember getting my wisdom teeth out, and my mother telling me I wouldn't remember anything. So naturally, I forced myself to stay awake during the ride home, talking so much that my gauze fell out and blood poured out of my mouth and got all over my shirt. I finally got to bed and slept but when I groggily woke up, the bleeding still hadn't stopped and I started freaking out and yelled for my dad who gave approximately half of a shit because he knew I was fine. Still, I yelled "huck huu!" after him ("fuck you!" with a mouthful of cotton) as he left my room, laughing out loud.

Point is, kids on drugs are funny. If, of course, they're not nine-year-olds on heroin; Harmony Korine's movies really aren't much for knee-slappers. If you're teaching your second grader to smoke a bowl, that's probably not cool at all, but if you're just having a laugh because your son can't feel his face after getting some teeth pulled, I'm pretty sure child services isn't going to be bursting through your door at any point in the near future.

There are plenty of stories that deserve outrage, and it should be the responsibility of a spotlighted loud-mouth like O'Reilly to showcase those. Instead, he turns his ire in the direction of a harmless YouTube video and then gets some sycophantic lackeys to get behind him on camera and tell the world that his shit smells like roses? I thought he was supposed to be a hard-hitting newsman. Where's the No Spin Zone, Billy? You're making me dizzy.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Forever and ever

Perhaps you've heard of Forever 21. If you're a college-aged young woman, there is a good chance half of whatever you are wearing right now is from the store. If you're a frat guy, you've probably got a drawer full of vomit-stained t-shirts and skimpy panties ("souveniers") with that name on the tag. But if you're unfamiliar, Forever 21 is a worldwide chain of clothing retailers that opened in 1984, though only in recent years has really hit its stride. And only by God's good graces.

Oh, you didn't know? Next time you see one of Forever 21's trademark yellow bags, flip it over. Inside the fold below you'll find the words, "John 3:16," a citation of the line in the New Testament about how Jesus died for everyone's sins--not a reference to Stone Cold Steve Austin, sorry. So the owners are Christians. Big deal, right? That's up to them, and if they want to hide a bible verse underneath their bags, that's their choice. So long as they're holding themselves to the standards any good Christians would. I mean, selling slutty clothing to underage girls isn't technically a sin, is it? Well, stealing certainly is. And Forever 21 is a real fucking champ at that.

First, from their employees. They're not going into the cashier's purses and swiping their lip balm and iPods or anything like that. But in 2001, the workers at the Southern California plant that makes most of Forever 21's clothes organized and called for a boycott, demanding the company make good on hundreds of thousands of dollars owed to them for overtime and even just to cap out at minimum wage. Not to mention the sweatshop like conditions of the warehouses, with cockroaches and rats scuttling across the floor. Forever 21 settled out of court after a lengthy process, though the company completely denied the claims of wrongdoing.

Second, from other designers. Every year it seems, Forever 21's design department finds themselves at Fashion Week in New York, not just jotting down ideas for what will be hot in the coming season, but blatantly ripping off designs from people like Diane von F├╝rstenberg, Gwen Stefani and Anna Sui--all of whom have filed lawsuits against the company. Not to mention, this year's lifting of the Minor Threat logo (yes, that Minor Threat), to which Ian MacKaye has also made legal advances the same way he had to against Nike in 2005.

Third, from the community. The famous South Central Farm, an urban farm and community garden in Southern L.A. that had, since the 1980s, been a haven for poor community growers, was bought out from under the feet of the self-governed South Central Farmers (despite the outcry from the community at large, the Annenberg Foundation and Zach de la Rocha) by Forever 21 in 2004. Now, the once lush 14 acre lot stands barren and bulldozed as Forever 21 moves forward on their plans to build a warehouse and distribution center there.

And finally, and most importantly, from its customers, which is what got me riled up enough to start railing on the company in the first place. I don't make much of a habit shopping at Forever 21 (I get all my tattered slut-rags from Wet Seal, thank you very much), but Jess had bought a sweater there recently and today we went to the mall to return it. Or to try to. You see, Forever 21 doesn't accept returns. In fact, if you show up without a receipt, or a day after their strict 30-day return policy, they'll boot your ass to the curb. Luckily, Jess had her receipt and only bought the sweater a week before, so she thought she could get the money refunded to her credit card and we'd be on our way, just like at any other store.

Not the case. You see, when you buy something at Forever 21, it's yours. And that's it. Maybe that's where they get the "Forever" in their name from. You can return the article of clothing, but they won't give you money back--only store credit. Which would be fine if you actually wanted to shop at the place. But with the kinds of clothing they carry, and their less than sparkling moral standards and constant legal battles, is it really the kind of place you want to spend your hard-earned coin? And around Christmastime, get ready to re-gift if you don't care for the place, because you know Mom heard it's a pretty cool store so you're probably getting something under the tree that you can't take back.

I know I can't return swimsuits and underwear and used needles, but pants? Sweatshirts? It would be one thing if there was a huge sign when you came in the door, warning you that you're signing off your soul on whatever you're planning to try on, but the only place you can even find a disclaimer about Forever 21's (lack of) return policy is in tiny letters on your receipt. After you already bought something. Something that will probably fall apart after a couple washes. Good luck getting ahold of an ear to bend on that one.

What about forgiveness? I thought that was what this place was all about. I mean it's printed right on the bag! Nowhere that you'd see it, of course, but it's the thought that counts, right? So what about walking the walk if you're going to talk to talk? What would Jesus do? Tell you that's store policy and he can't do a thing about it, sorry, who's next in line?