Tag Archives: interviews

Expert Interlude: Can Conservatives Write (Intentionally) Funny Stuff?

Let’s be honest: as unbiased as I try to be, the truth is that I, the Hellbrarian, prefer Democrats.

Jo: Preach, sister!

Fangzor: Which is short for Demolitions-Crat, and his political philosophy involves destroying things. It’s my political philosophy too. Which is why I’m totes getting a monster truck for my birthday.

Jo: Quiet, you bigoted breeder.

Fangzor: Jo, if I were breeding, perhaps I wouldn’t have such a plate of pissant problems.

Anyway, there is a reason behind my love of Democrats, and it’s not based on politics at all. It’s based on the abusive relationship that books have with me, where I wear a leash and am expected to lick what they spit off the floor. What I’ve noticed is that, when hardcore Democrats write humor, it’s funny. When hardcore Republicans write humor, it’s more often than not bitter and generalizing, and jokes come across more as strawman arguments. Granted, this is nothing against the Republican party in general – many Republicans have done great things. And among those great things, being funny is absent. Take these two political cartoons, for instance. I know I’m all about books, but this is shorter.

Exhibit A: Democratic political cartoon. Action, clever concept, and good execution. Generates a good chuckle unless you're offended.

Exhibit B: Republican political cartoon. Words rather than actions, whiny, and unrealistic. Makes Republicans nod in agreement - not laugh.

Fangzor: Are you kidding me? They’re both hilarious. Donkeys and elephants don’t talk!

Yeah, but you’re a talking snake.

Fangzor: Cripe, now I have to go re-imagine what humor is. I’ll need a pint of sulfuric acid and six thumbtacks.

How about no.

Fangzor: You’re not my mother!

So anyway, who better to give advice to GOP supporters on how to write comedy than a radio pundit? Please welcome Rush Limbaugh to the blog!

Jo: Yeah, I was meaning to tell you about that… I didn’t want to touch Limbaugh with a 100-yard dildo on a 900-yard stick, so I didn’t get him. But I got someone else. He’s the Indian version of Rush Limbaugh, different nationality and political party but same belligerent chutzpah.

Oh, whatever. Please welcome the, uh, Rush Limbaugh of India, Chakradev Kapur!

Kapur: Good evening to you, Hell-berry.

How was the trip to Literary Hell, Mr. Kapur?

Kapur: It is very fun to get through the flaming caves of death, assumedly. It was not for me, considering that I took the bus.

Fangzor: You do realize that the bus is actually a hungry dragon with mouths on the sides of his neck?

Kapur: NOBODY TELLS ME THESE THINGS!

Fortunately for the modern attention span of today’s Internetgoers, I have only one question for you, Mr. Kapur, and it is as follows:

How can supporters of the GOP write things that are intentionally funny?

Kapur: Oh, that is easy. For starters, I should let you know that my political party is the least popular in India.

Jo: And that is…

Kapur: The Touchable Advancement Movement, in your language. You may be aware that my country used to have a very prevalent population of Dalits, or “untouchables,” those whose families were said to have been disgraced by the Gods. But we believe that Dalits are not only good people, but that they are holy and must be groped, caressed, prodded, poked, and manhandled by the hands of strangers on sight.

Jo: You sexist pig.

Kapur: Fear not, it applies to men and women.

Jo: Well, if it’s equal opportunity molestation… how do I sign up?

ANYWAY, the Touchable Advancement Movement might be unpopular, but I understand that you are the most widely broadcasted radio pundit in India, renowned for your humor, correct?

Kapur: Yes. And what the GOP can learn from me is that I know I am capable of wrongdoing. I’ve said some things that I know politicians have laughed at me over. And what do I do? Embrace it. When I slip up or act out of line, I turn it into a running gag. Nobody is perfect, and the more you acknowledge your own imperfections, the more valid, and funny, you will be.

Jo: What about the Republicans who apologize to cover up the crap they say?

Kapur: That, I am afraid, is just so that they can return to thinking they are perfect. But the more they acknowledge that they are unintentionally funny – the more that they can do so intentionally. The same applies to democrats, but let us face it, Jon Stewart does not claim to be a man who can do no wrong. Self-deprecation can help any sense of humor. That is why my books have sold millions of copies worldwide, especially “I am a Creepy Old Fart Who Likes to Touch People: a Memoir.”

Inspired commentary from an inspired pundit. Thank you, Mr. Kapur.

Kapur: Anytime. Now, as per my custom as a TAM Dalit, you are hereby required to shove your fists into my armpits.

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Expert Interlude: Are “Tear-Jerker” Books Necessary?

Good afternoon, those who are safely in the realm of the living. I sure as hell ain’t. Anyway, ever since the previous entry on a TESLA book (Tear-Extracting Surgical Lacrimotherapy Apparatus) by the name of The Notebook, the Library has been flooded with fictional complaints:

“Y u such a hater helberryn. Teh noat boox is entairly neckassary. I tteechs us abt luv. Since early, Larry frum Texas”

“OMGGGGGG! h8 u hellbr , u sux11111!!!!!! -Jim e”

“Such sinister devilry came from this blog,
That e’en Aristophanes’s birds and frogs,
With all of their frivolous happ’nings at will,
All took up the musket and rallied to kill.
The Agony Library must be destroyed,
For terrible hexes with words thus deployed
Have taken the Sparksish repute and thus tarnish’d,
Like white before paint, and paint before varnish.
Regards,
T.S. Eliot”

Fangzor: Like I give a rat’s ass what they think about our library.

I don’t expect you to, Fangzor. You don’t technically work with us, you just hang out and be a jerk and look at African Boomslang porn on the computers.

Fangzor: No I don-- AWWW YEAH!

Jo: Anyway, we’ve got a special guest today, to discuss whether or not TESLA books are necessary.

We do? I thought we were just going to yell at our critics, that’s more fun.

Jo: I’ve got a real Lacrimosurgeon who uses TESLAs. He’s from Holland, and traditional, non-literary, highly-invasive tear harvesting surgery is still legal there.

Is that so? What’s his name?

Jo: Dr. Rijk Stentrooteld, LD. Come in, sir!

Dr. S: Hello, sir. I trust that you are the Hellbrarian?

…yes, I am. Um, Jo, are you sure this is a Dutch doctor?

Fangzor: Yeah,  he’s the spittin’ image of–

Dr. S: Rick Santorum, I am aware. It’s entirely coincidental. Besides, the entire Stentrooteld family is Marxist by nature, and I published a book of dead baby jokes in college.

How can I be sure that you’re not Santorum in disguise?

Jo: I did run a background check, H– Rick Santorum sued him in 1999 for trademark infringement.

Alrighty then. We’ve got a few questions for you, Doctor.

1. How can you differentiate between a well-written sad story and a TESLA book?

Dr. S: This sounds easy enough. It is true that a story can be sad as well as good. But they are of little or no use to those of us in the field of lacrimosurgery, because they produce more of a fulfilling feeling than actual profit-creating tears. A good story must have a clear-cut message to go along with its writing. If it does not, and the only clear reason that the book was created was to make people cry, then I can use it on my patients as a TESLA.

2. Can you recommend any good TESLAs for me to review?

Dr. S: Well, you already reviewed a Nicholas Sparks book. He’s the master of the TESLA. We look up to him like other doctors look up to Hippocrates. He is not a bad author if you take into consideration his contributions to our bank accounts – he does what he does well.

Oh, well then… I apologize for offending you with my previous review.

Dr. S: You did not, really.

Fangzor: We didn’t? Crud.

Dr. S: Lacrimosurgery is not popular outside its pre-existing following, we’ve come to expect this sort of thing. Anyway, if you want more TESLAs, I suggest you look at Harlequin Romance Novels, as well as Jodi Picoult. That woman can work wonders with tear ducts, and it’s earned her a lot.

I just might take you up on some Jodi Picoult in my next review.

3. Do you know any other prominent lacrimosurgeons?

Dr. S: Ah, yes! This is the kind of crowd I hang around:

Dr. S: The Medic from Team Fortress 2 used to be a lacrimosurgeon, but his license was revoked when he became careless with the rusty chainsaw incisions.

Dr. S: Dr. Disney was not only the world's best pediatric lacrimosurgeon... he was also the only one.

Dr. S: Poor old Dr. Thor thought lacrimosurgery was done with a magic hammer to the face. Two guesses as to where his license went.

And now, the question that’s been on everyone’s minds, except for those without this question on their minds:

4. Are TESLAs necessary, for reasons other than acquiring money?

Dr. S: Absolutely, for two reasons: One: Sometimes, people are going through a bad breakup, or a death in the family, or whatever else, and they use us as sort of a catharsis. Two: Without TESLAs, the fangirl community would die of starvation.

*BLAMMO!*

*insert awkward silence here*

Jo?

Jo: Yeah?

You just killed Dr. Stentrooteld. With a combat shotgun. In the Library of Agony.

Jo: We ain’t playin’ Clue, H.

Fangzor: HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. You should be a comedian, Jo. Just stand on a stage, say “how’s everybody doin’ tonight,” and blow all their brains out with a sniper rifle. That’d be hilarious.

But why?

Jo: Lacrimosurgeons and TESLAs are the reason we’ve been crying our eyes out next to our TVs and deviantART accounts all these years. The entire fangirl and fanboy community is a sea of addicts, and they’re the drug dealers. The less of them there are, the less of us go apeshit.

Fair enough.

Jo: What? Aren’t you gonna fire me for killing someone on the job?

Nah, not really, both of you are fictional anyways.

Jo: Cool.