Time for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? Email the Funbag. Today, we're covering ex-girlfriend sweaters, the metric system, dead tree porn, and more.
What's the proper etiquette for giving gifts of cannabis-infused gourmet foods and liquors to colleagues and superiors at work now that we have legalization here in Seattle?
I would avoid it for the time being. First of all, you need to know if your boss even likes weed. Secondly, you need to know if your boss likes ingesting weed via gummi bear. Not everyone takes their pot that way. I like smoking a joint as much as the next guy, but I've eaten enough pot brownies in my time to know that I don't ever want to do it again. It's a different high. You eat a dryass brownie and then sixty minutes later you get hit in the back of the neck with a shovel. IS THERE A POLICE SIREN NEARBY?! You have to make sure your boss likes that sort of thing, because there are 50,000 novelty pot foodstuffs out there and God knows what they do to you.
Also, even if you know for certain that your co-worker likes pot, you may not know if they approve of pot gift-giving. They still might think it's weird. Or worse, they might tell some tightass at the office who does NOT approve of such things, and then they tell the CEO that you're a HIPPIE WEASEL SLACKER who just wants to pop weed jelly beans at the office all day. You could be costing the firm millions in lost productivity! And out the door you go.
I've given alcohol as a gift plenty of times, usually knowing that the person on the receiving end is a drinker. Any time you give booze as a gift without knowing that, you always experience the sudden paralyzing fear of OMG WHAT IF THEY'RE RECOVERING FROM ALCOHOLISM?! Most alcoholics are polite enough to simply accept the gift and recycle it, because booze is such a prevalent part of our culture. I think weed will eventually get there, but we're still in the nascent stages. It still makes for a remarkably personal gift to give someone... a suggestion that you know them intimately enough to say, "Yes, you will like this bottle of hemp eyedrops." And office gifts should never be that intimate. Office gifts should be useful but utterly soulless: gift cards, boxes of gourmet nuts, etc. Weed isn't quite thoughtless enough of a gift just yet. But in 50 years, when full legalization has arrived and we're all mainlining straight THC into our earlobes and barely functioning as a society, then you'll be all good.
If the NFL decided to start doing everything in meters instead of yards, would that finally be enough to switch the US over to the metric system? Or would fans rebel? I guess what I'm asking is if America's devotion to the NFL outweighs its hatred of the metric system.
I think people would rebel because customary weights and measures are OURS. The fact that we're pretty much the only country that uses them isn't a deterrent to most Americans... it's a point of pride. We're the only country that likes football, so it stands to reason that our chosen sport would use a measuring system that is nonsensical to the rest of the universe. It's what makes us special. I'm sure we'd probably be better off using the metric system, but I personally despise it. I hate seeing temperatures in Celsius. I hate seeing weights in kg. THIS IS AMERICA AND WE MEASURE AMERICAN.
I am trained from birth in customary measures, which means that I need them in order to get a clear mental picture of how far or hot something is. If you tell me that something is 200 km away, I'm stumped. I can't envision that distance. I need it recalibrated to mileage so I can be like OH 120 MILES THAT'S KINDA FAR! Otherwise it flies completely over my head. I am functionally unable to grasp metric measurements and my countrymen are the same way.
If the NFL went to the metric system, it would remain pretty much the same sport since a meter is spiritually close to a yard. I can work with that measurement. I would just do a simple 1:1 conversion in my head, but I would hate the change and resent that the NFL forced a SOCCER measurement on my beloved sport. I do not think the rest of the US would follow suit. I think there'd be a petition to the White House within five hours of its implementation.
What is the NFL had weight limits like they do for kid's football leagues? Like if no player could be bigger than 250 lbs? Would the game be drastically different? Would injuries be reduced?
Well, DBs and WRs are usually under 250 lbs. and still manage to concuss one another, so you'd probably have to create weight limits that vary by position: 230 pounds for linemen, 190 pounds for LBs and RBs, 170 pounds for wideouts, and so on. Then you'd have players starving themselves to make weight and passing out in the street after running seven miles wearing a sweatshirt and a garbage bag. By reducing player weight, you would probably statistically lower the force of player collisions (although speed surely plays a significant factor in concussive impacts).
The problem is that fewer people would watch football. You would know, instinctively, that you are not watching the sport at its maximum capabilities. After seeing 350-lb. lineman, watching linemen who are 100 pounds lighter would feel like watching high school football.
There's a reason people yearn for a superstar heavyweight boxing champion. I dunno about you, but the further away an athlete is from my size and/or talents, the more compelling they are to watch. If they are significantly faster or stronger or bigger than I am, that improves the spectacle. I don't want my athletes to be like me. I want them to be beyond human. I want them to be 500-pound shit-stomping behemoths who ingest five tons of rice per day and can squat a small truck. I want the freakshow. Imagine if the NBA had a height limit. You'd feel cheated, right? You wouldn't feel like you were watching something truly out of the ordinary. That's why the NFL will never have weight limits, even if it would probably serve the players well.
I recently broke up with my girlfriend. A while back she bought me a very nice, and more importantly, warm cashmere sweater. What is the etiquette on wearing this? I have been wearing it because it's cold out, but I'm not sure if I'm breaking some sort of rule.
I don't think there's any rule about wearing something your ex gave you, unless you have a new girlfriend and she doesn't want you rocking it. Otherwise, it's just a sweater. If it has functional use to you, then you can go right ahead and ignore its emotional history*. I had a jacket once that an ex gave me that I kept wearing because it was a nice jacket. I'm not just gonna throw that away. In fact, I viewed it as payment for my emotional distress. She was a lousy girlfriend, but hey! FREE JACKET! Nice to know I didn't come out of the exchange empty-handed.
Now, I say all of that knowing that sometimes, you can't divorce yourself from the garment's history. You know that Jen gave you that sweater. In fact, it still smells like her. Just a whiff of the collar and you can smell her honeyed hair, faint traces of her perfume, her fruity lip gloss... OH WHAT YOU COULD HAVE HAD TOGETHER. If only you could hold her just one more time. Instead, she went and threw it all away and married Chad! THAT FUCKING BITCH. So if the sweater gets you all worked up like that, you can probably go ahead and donate it to the nearby Salvation Army.
(*ONE CONDITION: Obviously, do not wear this garment your ex gave you at a function where you know your ex will be in attendance. Then she'll think you're still thinking about her and you don't want her thinking that even if it's true because that would make you look weak and you want her to know that you are strong and confident and having sex with many other women right now thank you!)
I absolutely love my boyfriend, he will likely be my husband one day, but we disagree on one thing - Xbox. He loves to play, says he gets to be competitive, socialize, and it's how he likes to relax after a long work day. Even wears that headset thing. I say it's a childish waste of time and would love nothing more than to set it on fire and toss it into the grand canyon. He says that when we have children he will stop playing. What are the odds that actually happens? I swear guys are addicted to this stuff.
I can only speak from experience when I tell you that I used to play lots of video games when I was single but eventually stopped, especially after kids arrived. There just isn't enough time for it. And when you don't have enough time for video games, you stop being good at them, and no man alive wants to play video games if they suck at them. If I'm playing Madden, I want to beat the piss out of everyone in it, and that requires WORK. That requires you practicing eight hours a day and studying tape and revising your playbook and accosting Urban Meyer in a hotel lobby to ask him about the spread option. Once work and kids take that time away and you become a pathetic husk of your old gaming self, you tend to give it up completely. I'm never gonna be good at Madden again because of all these people I love deeply, and that's a shame.
This is one of those situations where both you and your boyfriend can be in the wrong. If your guy is unwinding every day by playing Xbox for eight hours and not saying a word to you, well then he's a shitty boyfriend and you're right to chew him out. BUT... if he's just playing for an hour or so every day and is legitimately passionate about it and you want to chuck the Xbox out because you think games are dumb... well then, that's on you, missy. Don't just dump on something he really likes and say "it's childish" if he's still an otherwise good boyfriend. You should be able to accept that part of his life—even try to learn more about it—if he's not a full-blown gamer dipshit. Ask for a time limit on his play and then tolerate it. If you can't do that... THEN MAYBE YOUR RELATIONSHIP IS A LIE.
By the way, I am complete hypocrite when it comes to video games and parenting. I played a shitload of NES as a kid. Hours at a time. But every time my kids ask for a console I tell them FUCK NO. You kids aren't growing up fat and smearing your ass grease all over the controllers. NO XBOX FOR YOU.
How many contestants do you think Alex Trebek has masturbated to over his thirty-some year career on Jeopardy?
Judging by the Hot People On Jeopardy Tumblr feed, maybe more than a couple! Let's hope Alex had the good taste not to fap to any Teen Jeopardy contestants.
For as long as I can remember, I have eaten the entire apple, core and stem included. It probably started because of an elementary school dare, but I know I've been doing it for at least 25 years. In fact, the only time I don't eat the core is when I'm at an orchard and can't be bothered (free apples!). My friends and family used to be appalled, but are now used to it. Am I a complete weirdo?
As someone who eats shrimp tails on occasion, I kind of understand. First off all, eating the entire apple means you don't have to deal with disposing of the core, which is nice because walking around with a sticky apple core in your hand makes you feel like an idiot. Secondly, honeycrisp apples cost roughly five million dollars per pound, so it's nice to get good value out of your produce.
But I don't know how you tolerate it. The core of the apple tastes like shit. The seeds are hard. The fibers get stuck in your teeth. Isn't the stem bitter? How do you not choke on it? I'd choke every day if I attempted it.
Pear cores are a little bit easier because—apart from the seeds—they're pretty soft. You could eat that whole and probably be okay. But an apple core? That's bold.
When people smoke pot in movies and TV shows, it seems to be about 60% joints and 40% bongs. I cannot recall ever seeing a TV or movie character smoking pot from a pipe. My real-life pot-smoking experience is roughly 90% pipes, 5% joints, and 5% bongs. I am confident my pot-smoking friends have numbers that are very close to mine. Are we the weirdos?
No, I just think that moviemakers opt for bongs and joints because they're more photogenic. A bong hit is funny. And a joint looks all hip and Don Draper-y. By comparison, showing someone smoking a bowl looks awkward and stupid. The average pipe looks like a marble that developed a tumor. And lighting one isn't always clean and efficient. I'll spark the lighter and then hold it there and try to get the bowl to catch, only my thumb will get tired and/or burnt to a crisp and I'll have to stop, rest, and then try again. This always makes me feel like an failure. You can't film a dude lighting up a bowl because the pipe and his fat hand block his face. Hence, joints and bongs. And don't expect them to be phased out of Hollywood stoner comedies in favor of dabbing and/or office gift pot Twizzlers. Hollywood sticks with what works.
If the USA evenly distributed our athletes, instead of condensing them into a few major sports, wouldn't we win every Olympic gold medal ever? I have a hard time imagining LeBron and Dwight Howard ever losing to a couple dudes from Australia or whatever in a beach volleyball match. Am I an American homer or would we literally dominate everything?
Well I think we'd probably still keep LeBron as a basketball player since he's the best in universe at that and we still want a basketball medal. You would just take a bunch of lesser football and basketball players and attempt to mold them into rowers and skiers and pole vaulters and all that. I dunno that redistributing our athletic talent would net us EVERY medal. It may be that lots of our best athletes want to play basketball but also are only meant to play that sport. It's not like you can take a 6'6" swingman and make a gymnast out of him when gymnasts need to be short. Some sports lend themselves to mass participation and some require a quirky, stupid niche talent (luge?) that only one little white dude living in Northwest Idaho possesses.
I think we would win more medals than we already do if we spread out our talent. But frankly, I like the fact that we don't do this, because it allows me to think that we would dominate any chosen sport even if that isn't true. I get irrationally pissy when I see a bunch of Norwegians take home all the cross country skiing medals when I know it's only because we LET THEM WIN. Oh, if only we were a dictatorship that forced Malcolm Smith to take up biathlon... then you herring-eaters would realize your triumphs are an illusion!
When I was a kid my friends and I had a crumpled Genesis skin mag we kept wrapped in saran wrap in a tree in my backyard. We would take turns with it. Never together. That would have been weird. Do kids still look at skin mags? No chance right?
I think it's possible, because maybe Dad keeps a dead tree porn stash somewhere in the house (one he keeps purely out of nostalgia), or because Grandpappy keeps one somewhere because the Internet scares him. I doubt any kid today buys porno mags or even bothers to steal them (as I did) when online parental controls are probably easy to circumvent (Side note: OH GOD MY KIDS ARE DOOMED).
But if a kid today has easy access to a printed skin mag, he's obviously gonna look. I'm 37 years old and whenever I walk into a Hudson News at the airport, I totally notice the copies of Hustler tucked up on the high shelves. When I was a kid I used to stare daggers at those things. It was like someone left a bag of diamonds out in the open to take. I knew exactly what was inside those magazines: boobs and butts and vaginas and all kinds of shit that I desperately wanted to see. No kid is gonna ignore that. So if a kid today has the chance to look at a copy of Penthouse, he will. He won't be as grimly determined to get his hands on one as I was, but if the opportunity presents itself, he's going for it.
One other advantage to printed skin mags for the horny teenager: No digital footprint. Mom's been searching your browser history every day. Little does she know to look under your mattress for that copy of Velvet! MWAHAHAHAHAHA.
How did the first person become bi-lingual? Since there was no way for someone who was already bi-lingual to translate things for them, seems like it would have been difficult to bridge the gap.
Like most people today, it was probably accomplished through immersion and sheer will. This is why your seventh grade Spanish teacher refused to speak English during class: to force you to pick up on whatever she was saying. And this is why you probably hated your seventh grade Spanish teacher. I remember trying to speak nothing but Spanish in class—as instructed—only to fail, get frustrated, then just start speaking nothing but English out of sheer protest. You could see the teacher's spirit break any time a student was like, "Como se... Like, how do you say taco in Español? Oh!"
I have a wife who speaks two languages (I only speak one because this is America), and we both went into parenthood determined to teach our kids both English and German. Only I was too lazy to learn German because trying to learn a foreign language is really, deeply annoying—often more annoying than failing at any other kind of academic pursuit. And then my wife tried talking to the kids in German and they would start to cry, like "Why is Mommy speaking weirdo talk?" And then she stopped. So our kids will now grow up with just English, even though bilingual kids end up learning to play sixty different musical instruments and can tame dolphins with just a single glance. We have regrets.
Why do the major networks continue to broadcast football games with the sideline camera when the skycam / zipline camera hovering above the pocket is far superior? We want to be able to see the routes the receivers are running. We appreciate seeing the lanes that the offensive linemen open up on running plays. With the sideline shot all we can see is the line of scrimmage and the thrill of 3,000 pounds of humanity shoving each other. But what is going on downfield?! Was Dez Bryant really open and justified in throwing that tantrum on the sideline? Did RGIII really need to scramble to the sideline again because every receiver was covered? It's like Tecmo Bowl '88 vs. Madden 25.
True, but people are used to the sideline camera, and they don't like change. If the NFL can get 111 million people to watch a terrible football game with that angle, they aren't fixing what ain't broken. There are times when FOX or CBS will broadcast an entire play using an end zone camera and it will make me irrationally angry. WHAT IS THIS ANGLE? I'M GONNA BE SEASICK. It would take a while for viewers to get used to a new main angle, and networks don't have the time for that adjustment period.
Also, if you go with the Madden view, you'd never see the quarterback's face. People like seeing the QB's face.
My friend is 27 and just divorced, about to marry again, another oncoming train wreck of a marriage. He is too newly-divorced to think straight, so should I try and set him straight (risk he hates me) or let him end up being the 40 yr old with 5 divorces under his belt? I want to do an intervention, as if he was a crack addict.
I would just let him go and learn from his own mistakes. You can't offer unsolicited criticism of your friend's relationship because he will side with the woman EVERY time. Every single time. I had a friend once who was dating a woman I didn't care for, and I told him so. I think you know what happened next: He got pissed at me, defended her, and their relationship carried on. It's one thing if your friend asks you in confidence, "Hey, is this a good idea?" and you answer as honestly (but politely) as possible. But if you're just like THAT WOMAN IS NO GOOD, forget it. He's not listening. No one wants to be told how to live their life. You just have to hope that the next divorce is enough to set him straight.
Email of the week!
Last year I decided to volunteer and join the Israeli army. I tried out for the elite paratroopers and made it. The night before my first day me and my friends go out and drink heavily for my last night of "freedom". The next morning after two hours of sleep it's my first day reporting for duty, wearing my new pristine paratroopers uniform and walking from the bus station in Kiryat Gat to the train station where we all have to meet up. Before I left the bus station I felt some rumbling going down in my stomach but it was a ten minute walk and didn't want to be late on the first day so decided to wait till I got there.
Halfway through I feel pressure building up but it's my first time in the city, I don't speak the language, and thus have no means of finding an immediate bathroom, so I decide to release some pressure with a controlled fart. What came out I could not control. The sheer force of gas and liquid overpowered my butt muscles and was all released into my brand new uniform. I had a change of underwear in my bag and knew I had to change em quick before it leaked out into the one uniform I had. I saw a gas station a block down and made for it. When I got in the bathroom was occupied. While waiting the girl clerk behind the counter starts flirting with me (paratroopers are big shit here and Israeli girls love Americans). During the course of the conversation she mentions the bad smell and I blame it on the guy in the bathroom.
Little does she know the whole time my pants are filled with something akin to a shit slurpee mixed with beef stew. The guy finally gets out and I change my underwear. There was a nice skid mark on the pants but didn't have a spare so just went with it. Problem was the bathroom didn't have a garbage and I didn't wanna risk stuffing the toilet and drawing attention to myself so I leave the shit filled boxers briefs next to the toilet. on the way out she gives me her number. I made it on time and complained when I got to base that I got a stained uniform with a bad smell. They gave me a new one with apologies. I wish I could have seen her face when she went into the bathroom and discovered my present. I never got the balls to call her.
Drew Magary writes for Deadspin. He's also a correspondent for GQ. Follow him on Twitter @drewmagary and email him at email@example.com. You can also order Drew's book, Someone Could Get Hurt, through his homepage.
Art by Jim Cooke