Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

Time for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Find more of Drew's stuff at KSK or on Twitter. Buy Drew's book, The Postmortal, through here. Email the Funbag here. Today, we're covering toasters, 9/11, salsa, germs, and more. Image by Jim Cooke.

Your letters:

Zach:

If you were transported back in time to August 11, 2001 with the precise goal of stopping 9/11 a month later, how would you do it? Mark Wahlberg's strategy of kicking the terrorists' asses on the plane would only work if you hired out people to go on three other flights. Also, with no social media and/or smart phones back then, you couldn't just broadcast the news to the world to not fly on 9/11 (and even that strategy might not work since the terrorists would change their plans if word leaked.) And considering how fucked up the intelligence community was back then, I don't know if a month would've been enough time for word to get up the chain if you went to the police/FBI. And that assumes they believe your, "I'm from the future and something bad is about to happen" argument.

There were reports prior to 9/11 that went up through the chain of command that were clear and firm about terrorists using airplanes as weapons of mass destruction. Those reports went unheeded, but the one advantage you'd have over those reports would be a firm DATE and TIME, along with at least one flight number (I remember United 93, the other three plane numbers less so), and at least one hijacker name (I remember Mohamed Atta, although I needed Google to help spell his first name). That's a terrific amount of information to go to the FBI or TSA with. Assuming no one would believe you or be willing to help you otherwise, I think this would be the path of action:

1. Call every law enforcement agency and note every detail you can.

2. Buy a plane ticket (assuming you have enough money and are in the NYC area) to get on one of the 9/11 flights, probably United 93.

3. Go to the airport and check in and go to the gate.

4. See if some of the hijackers are there and accounted for.

5. Tell security officials that you know those men are carrying boxcutters on them (I remember boxcutters).

6. If the cop does his job and searches for the boxcutters, explain to him that there are MORE plots like this ready to go right now, this instant. Make as big of a fuss as you can.

7. If the cop is a dick and brushes you off, begin running around pointing at the hijackers being like THESE MEN ARE FUCKING HIJACKERS! PLEASE BELIEVE ME, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE BELIEVE ME!

I think the hardest thing would be keeping your cool under all of those circumstances. I'd have a hard time restraining myself and not go running around screaming out everything to everyone and then getting locked in a padded cell while the world burns. I don't know if the understated approach would work (Christ, I hope it would). That's why we need to train every American to know the names of every hijacker and every flight number, just in case sudden wormhole time travel happens. And we should add zombie training as well, just in case the wormhole dumps you into a world with zombie hijackers.

Matt:

Who knew a badonkadonk had so many uses? What else can she do with that ass? And that's why I never hold the hand rails on the metro.

Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

That's the greatest thing ever. Her ass is like a koala bear.

Anthony:

Yesterday, I spent 10 minutes deciding what type of salsa I should buy along with tortilla chips. I paced up and down the aisle like a mad man. It became a life changing decision. Regular salsa? Mild, Medium, or hot? Salsa con queso? Southern creamy ranch or some shit like that? I settled on Monterey Jack which I never had before. It was pretty damn good.

I bet it was. All you need to know about buying salsa is that you should always buy the jarred crap that's LOADED with sodium, and not the expensive fresh pico de gallo shit they sell near the produce aisle. Because while it sounds like a good idea to eat fresh salsa, in practice it becomes impossible. You dip your chip in, all of the little tomato cubes fall off, and then a tablespoon of salsa water drips into your lap as you try and get it into your mouth. It's horrible. Stick with the Chi Chi's brand tomato slop. It has superior chip adherence.

Joe:

Last Sunday my 3 year old son woke up and told me he was sick. Before having kids of my own, I thought a sick kid would absolutely ruin your weekend. Now I know better. He just laid on the couch all day, in and out of sleep, while I watched two games in their entirety, in real time, for the first time in 3 years. And.....the wife thanks me at the end of the day for being there for him all day.

Oh yeah, it's great. They sleep. They don't run around. They don't scream. You don't have to cook anything for them except soup. And they go to bed early without complaint. I love it. Like I said before, they should sell the flu at stores, so you can give it to your child if you want a rest over the weekend.

Also, sick children are very cute. They're swaddled in blankies and they're face is all red and they sniffle pathetically. And they use a very soft voice... very gentle and innocent. A stomach virus really brings out their best qualities. I wish my kid was sick every weekend.

Rourke:

I was thinking the other day, what if germs made some sort of screaming noise when you killed them? Personally I feel like I would definitely wash my hands more. Imagine the gratifcation you would get washing your hands or tossing bleach on a countertop and hearing the cries of all sorts of disgusting germs that if you had not killed would have made you deathly ill. I think this would be particularly great if the more dangerous the germ the louder the scream. For example if you had salmonella on a countertop and you emptied out a full container of Lysol on top of it, it would sound like Vigo the Carpathian being blasted by slime.

Yes, but would you also hear germs laughing? Or chewing into your flesh? Because then that would ruin it. I'm also personally glad that I cannot see germs, and that germs aren't actually the size of roaches or bot flies. That would render me paralyzed with fear for life. I think I'm okay with keeping things the way they are right now: with my hand herpes silent and invisible.

Dan:

This was taken in Mishawaka, IN. The side was decorated just like the jeeps in Jurassic Park.

Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

I can't decide if that's cool or not. Such a fine line between cool and inane.

By the way, my kids watch Scooby Doo DVDs all the time and these DVDs come with extras. And one of the extras is a feature about the world's biggest Scooby Doo fans, so they take a tour of this one fan's house. This guy is, like forty years old. And his house is fucking HUGE. Like, a real mansion. And it's crammed with pointless Scooby Doo merchandise: stuffed animals, records, toys, everything. He must have spent thousands upon thousands of dollars on his "Scooby Doo" collection, which amazed me. I have no idea how someone that into Scooby Doo could end up being that rich. That strikes me as an incredible disconnect. I would expect a 40-year-old Scooby Doo fanatic to be a dirt-poor, 500-pound autistic person. I found it remarkably disturbing. I want to hunt that man down and smack the shit out of him for wasting his money on mint condition Scooby Doo 45s. He looked like a real ass.

Steve:

So, with constantly regenerating skin and your body always renewing cells and replacing dead ones, one must wonder: How many separate dicks have you had in your life? 3? 4?

Your outer skin is replaced, on average, every four weeks (according to a simple Google Search). So, if you're 35 like me, your outer penis has been replaced 455 times. That's a lot of dicks. The molting flesh lets the ladies know I'm in heat.

Gabe:

I have a toaster oven that I use to make toast instead of a conventional toaster. Whenever I use it I always watch the bread toast and pretend I'm a super villain extracting precious intel from an arch nemesis. "Still don't wish to tell me the missile launch codes, Mr. Bond? PERHAPS ANOTHER TWO MINUTES IN MY TOASTING CHAMBER WILL CHANGE YOUR MIND!"

I also own a toaster oven, and the reason I prefer a toaster oven is because I'm very impatient and like to stare at my food while it's browning. If you use a regular toaster, your view of the browning process is hopelessly obscured thanks to the narrow amount of space between the bread and the heating coils (though it is fun to watch those fuckers turn bright orange). Toasting, at that point, is a cruel guessing game. I have a LIGHT and DARK setting on my toaster oven and it means NOTHING. Different foods require different levels of toastiness. And so there's a suspense to toasting shit, calibrating the exact right setting to make sure the toast is golden brown along its entire surface area. I don't know about you, but I fuck up toasting things all the time. I stare at the toaster oven, then I remember to check my Twitter feed or some shit (LULZ!), and then I realize fifteen minutes later that I left my Toaster Strudel in there and it was the LAST Toaster Strudel GAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! Horrible feeling.

Mark:

Is there anything worse than trying to button that little forearm button on your sleeves? You know, the one about 3 inches above where the cuff buttons on a dress shirt. Whenever I finish buttoning up a shirt only to find out that I have to try to button this one goddamn tiny button (with one hand no less!) I want to just rip off the fucking shirt and call in sick because I know it'll take me like 5 minutes to get this damn thing buttoned.

Don't button it. It's just there to make your life miserable. I don't know about you, but I never fix anything wrong with my formal apparel. If my shirt is missing a lapel button, it will NEVER get that button back. I once had a jacket my mom bought for me (because I'm a little boy) and the chest and side pockets were stitched shut. And you know what I did about it? Nothing. In fact, for a good long time, I thought the jacket was supposed to be like that. "Oh, it only had pocket flaps for decoration." I didn't know that, if you spend three seconds with a pair of scissors, the jacket would have functional pockets. Why are they even stitched shut to begin with? No one's gonna hide a gnome in there. I didn't care. I am not a good dresser.

Jinesh:

What are the chances there has been an actual dead body in there?

Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

A human body? Zero. A cat body? One hundred percent.

Joe:

Not long ago, I entered a public restroom in a sports facility where I play basketball/soccer. In said restroom, there were four options - one urinal at a "normal" height, one urinal at a "child's" height and two stalls: one handicapped-accessible and one of a more narrow persuasion meant, I'm assuming, for able-bodied folks. The only other patron utilizing this lavatory was a little person, or midget (if you don't care about midgets' feelings). He was using the "normal" height urinal, even though the other three were at his disposal, which struck me as odd. Out of the four options, this was the least accessible for the gentleman. He was standing on his tippy toes to even get his stream into the porcelain. Far be it from me to tell a man how to relieve himself, but doesn't a struggle such as this negate the very essence of "relieving" oneself? Or should this man be applauded for his vigor and determination?

He shouldn't be applauded. He's clearly going through a midget identity crisis and he's become too proud to just suck it up and use the correct toilet for his height. Peter Dinklage wouldn't do that. Peter Dinklage would be secure enough in his dwarfism that he would use the child's urinal, and FUCK YOU if you think he's less of a man for it. In many ways, that midget's struggle to get his little midget pecker over the rim of the urinal is a microcosm of what's wrong with American male behavior today. BE COMFORTABLE IN YOUR OWN MIDGET SKIN.

By the way, I was at the mall the other day and there was a little person getting on the elevator, and this was one of those little people that isn't proportionately correct. He had a HUGE head, but then like NO body. His head was easily half of his total height. I was alarmed for him. I thought he might drop dead of organ failure on the spot. Some little people look terrifically unhealthy. Not Dinklage strong.

HALFTIME!

Andrew:

Do you think anyone (either a big time actor or a random attendant) went to the bathroom and jacked it during the Oscars? That has to be a lot more fun than listening to some random-ass set designer talk.

I'm sure it's happened. I know I'd do that if I were ever invited to the Oscars, if only because the ladies who flank the stage and escort you to the press room are so not unattractive. Most of the famous people at the Oscars go and hang out in the bar during the entire show anyway, so I don't see why they wouldn't stop into the stall for a quick tug/blowjob/handjob from an assistant/bump of coke/private cutting session. You are talking about some of the loneliest, most starved-for-love people on Earth. They're going to do odd things in bathrooms. They should have a camera feed from the Oscar toilet and Oscar bar running at all times during the telecast.

By the way, nothing infuriates me more than that post-Oscar party coverage. Oh hey, look at all the people who went to this party! And look at all the good food they ate! Oh look, one of them is talking to another! Aren't you glad you know this? Only FOX5 News was able to get in with the VIPs! DIE. DIE IN A FUCKING HABACHI STATION FIRE. I hate seeing that, mostly because then I spend the rest of the day imagining myself at the Vanity Fair party, hobnobbing with the Hollywood elite, and then I hate myself for wanting that. It's bad form to have a party and then flaunt it in front of everyone who wasn't invited, dammit. Why should I be happy for your fun night out? I don't need to see photos of Hilary Swank sharing canapes with Colin Firth or whoever the fuck.

Ethan:

I have a 2 1/2 year old daughter. Last night, we are sitting at the dinner table, and my daughter rips this huge fart. She looks at her mom and says, "Did you hear those piggies snortin' mommy?" And then just cracks up. I'm a good father, right?

Indeed you are. That's a great age because you can rip farts around your kid and your kid will laugh and think it's funny and not care AT ALL about how bad it smells. I have a 6-year-old and the 6-year-old is no longer like that. Every night, when I go to tuck my kid in, I fart in the room. I don't mean to. It just happens. You're leaning over a small bed and gas flies right through you. This means my poor child is trapped in her own room with my fart, and that's not fair. I can no longer pass this off as funny. She looks at me and she's like, "That REALLY smells." Playtime is OVER. No more open farting season for Daddy.

Jason:

How awesome is this?

Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

Fairly awesome. Not WAY awesome.

Aaron:

How many delicious meals in your lifetime would you say you've wasted thanks to binging on the bread basket before the main course at a restaurant? Is the bread basket ever worth it?

Depends on the bread. If it's the standard dinner roll, then the answer is no. But if it's some crazyass artisanal stuff that was made by some lesbian who uses 2,000-year-old yeast, and it's all crusty and bubbly and shit, then it's kinda worth it. If I'm at restaurant and they serve fancy bread with any kind of special butter (Honey butter! Strawberry butter! Truffle butter! Butter butter!), I'm going to town. I also like to go to Italian restaurants, pour a gallon of olive oil onto my bread plate, sprinkle it with a pound of salt, and dip away. The salt lets you know it's working.

Hunter:

As a father, I'm sure you're familiar with the Thomas and Friends series. Do you think Thomas has earned the label of "the cheeky one"? He's never done anything remotely cheeky and seems like he's going to narc James out to Sir Topham Hatt at any moment.

If you read the original books (don't), Thomas actually is a cocky young asshole who still has much to learn, but they toned all that down for the TV show, so the whole "cheeky" thing is bullshit. I find that show terrifying because all of the trains have faces and only their eyes move. The rest of their faces are frozen solid, so I keep thinking that each train on the show has been possessed by a man who can only communicate using his eyes and cannot move his mouth or tongue or even his cheeks. He's frozen in an eternal hell of hauling lumber in stone silence, staring at the world through a rigid death mask. It's like The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, only somehow worse.

Matthias:

Saw this when visiting my in-laws. My wife grew up here and didn't get my juvenile humor. "Butt Drugs has always been there."

Important Tips For Going Back In Time And Preventing 9/11

Lord willing, we'll always have Butt Drugs.

Mike:

Do female sports teams grow playoff bushes? They have to, right?

I certainly hope they do. Am I wrong to think that would be kind of a turn-on? I'm old school like that.

Kyle:

I'm friends with a guy who started a band. It got really popular after appearing on a national TV show, and now they're on national radio, touring in Singapore, etc.

The problem is, they sound and act like absolute shit. They wear skinny jeans and neon tank tops, hipster glasses, as part of the "image". They're nearly 30 and they pander to 14-year-old girls. They're embarrassing their (my) hometown. Any review I've read is… ungood. They make we want to slam my head through the car window when they come on the radio. Do I high five him for making a living off of basically doing nothing, or do I kick him in the chest to let him know what's up?

You high-five him. So his music sucks. Big deal. Would your friends leave you just because you sucked at YOUR job, like being a lawyer or something? Of course not. Friends don't judge. If you hate your friend's music and you think it would hurt his feelings if you told him, then keep that shit to yourself. There's nothing worse than a friend who offers constructive criticism. I don't want friends like that. I want YES MEN, who will keep their grievances to themselves and let me enjoy my dinner in peace. Being a friend means accepting your friend for all his flaws, his unlistenable, derivative, horrible flaws.

Ger:

I play rugby with a South African front row forward who's big, fat, fast and built like a cinder block. Back home, he played rugby at a fairly high level in Cape Town. I got chatting to him once about initiations for rookies, and he told me that his old team used to make newbies lie on floor of the locker room after their first game while the two fattest, sweatiest guys on the team stood over him, ass-to-ass. Three cans of beer would then be poured down their backs and down their ass cracks, and the rookie would have to drink the horrible, disgusting liquor that made its way through butt canyon.

Needless to say, I puked in my mouth a little bit when he told me.

The lesson: NEVER play rugby. The only hazing I got as a football player was drinking too much and having my ass kicked. Don't hang out with bullies who are more creative than that.

President Camacho:

Do you think any sitting POTUS has ever played video games in the White House? I figure Clinton would be the most likely candidate; he was a dude who liked a good time and was in office during the rise of the original Playstation. I could see him fingerbanging an intern and then settling in for some Crash Bandicoot.

I'm sure all of the past three Presidents have, because they all had kids who were college-age or below. There's no way Obama hasn't casually played "Angry Birds" once or twice on his kid's iPad or whatever. I'm sure he's played it the way every parent plays their kid's games. "Whoa hey, what's this? A game, eh? Let your old man have a crack at it... (throws down controller in frustration) Well, I can't make head or tails of this! NOT FOR MY GENERATION." Old people are losers like that. I can't wait to try and play Call of Duty 7 in front of my kid and then fail miserably. Gonna be a real transition moment for me.

Jake:

The other night, apropos of nothing, my girlfriend asked me whose head I would choose to have attached to my shoulder, Zaphod Beeblebrox-style. Of course I needed to establish the criteria for this scenario, which she laid out after much questioning. The basics are:

1) The head is from a currently living person and is grafted onto you to save its life.
2) The head is on your body but you are in charge of the body. The head cannot control your actions and is subordinate to you.
3) Therefore you can gag/blindfold the head whenever you want
4) You assume all the head's legal privileges and/or responsibilities, ie. if it's Bill Gates' head you assume all his wealth, if it's Obama's you're the President.
5) If you outlive the head you keep all the head's wealth/power. The head is removed and life returns to normal.
6) No one else on Earth is two-headed, so you're a freak for the duration.

You'd have to choose a head that you could take a shit with, shower with, talk with, and who would have a decent enough life to cushion your freakish existence. Strangely enough, I think my girlfriend wanted me to choose her head, but after much reflection and a lot of her pestering, I finally chose David Bowie.

That night I slept on the couch. Who should I have chosen?

Besides Robert Evans? Probably your best friend, or someone who you find completely tolerable at all hours of the day. The only way you're gonna survive that setup is if you're stuck with someone who is agreeable and intelligent and displays a measure of understanding when you want to fap at night.

If you had to pick a famous person for this, you should obviously pick a very old and very rich person, so that the head dies quickly and you can collect your loot. But let's say money is not a factor, and it's deemed that you would NOT outlive the other head. This way, you're forced to pick the most livable head, with no other ulterior motives. In that case, I'd choose someone interesting, like the president. I could pester the president all day long about whether or not he plays video games, and where he poops, and what he does if he wants to fap. Then I could be in the room when he orders small Afghan villages bombed. It would be awesome. I would never get tired of lugging around the president's head.

Email of the week!

TLub:

My junior year of college there was a serial rapist in the town. He had actually been around for years, but had become increasingly prolific and over a week raped three girls. The police basically put the town on lockdown, bars closed, parties canceled - it was all very alarming. I lived with 5 other girls in a huge drafty house with multiple entrances through decrepit doors on a dark and isolated street, including one into the horrific basement which had another inside door that led to a room no one had ever set foot in, secured with a wire coat hanger. We didn't notice it when we moved in and no one had the courage to check once we had signed the lease.

Anyway, we locked every door and all set up shop for the night in one bedroom - nothing like a serial rapist on the loose to encourage a good old fashioned slumber party! During a lull in the conversation we heard a knocking from downstairs. Then something that sounded like breaking glass. We hesitated, freaked, and called the cops. They came, checked the house, decided all was well and left. We went back upstairs. The noise resumed. And continued. Two of the girls - field hockey players - decided to be brave and investigate. Just like in a crappy movie, the rest of us slowly followed. The noise was coming from the basement. I stood at the top of the stairs while they went down with a flashlight. Sure enough the knocking was coming from behind the inside door - slightly ajar. They screamed "we're coming in!" (did I mention we were all drunk?) and wrenched open the door and screamed. I think I might have peed my pants. I looked down and two enormous bats flew out of the room straight at their heads. My roommates ran for cover, up the stairs, we slammed the door and retreated. None of us ever set foot in the basement again. When the lease ended two months later the door leading down was still shut tightly. I still feel bad for the next tenant who went down there to innocently put in a load of whites.

Were the bats ever raped?