How have I missed these guys all this time?
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Also too: this vid puts me in mind of an old Journal of Irreproducible Results paper on the natural history and psychology of editors. The one unifying characteristic: all of them as children, had been whacked by a book. ;)
You may consider this a completely GOP genital-invasion free invitation to an open thread.*
*Though, on reflection, one may catch a whiff of big-swingingness in the sketch above. Ah well. One can run; one can’t hide.
Ah, Mitchell and Webb. I first found them discussing the “distinctive aroma” of linden trees…
Thanks for a morning laugh.
And you have Number Wang.
Wal-Mart just got their pee-pees slapped again. This time by a Mexican court for trying to pay workers in script redeemable ONLY at Wally World.
These clowns really do want to pull us all back to the Pullman-Porter days of company towns & eternal debt to the corporate masters.
Makes me want to open up a packet of Cressps…
You do realize that story is from September 2008?
More Robert Webb appropriate for Mardi Gras
You seriously need to catch up.
German soldiers figure it out
Of limited interest perhaps, but this will likely be the most fascinating story I’ll read all day: “Cormac McCarthy’s parallel career revealed-as a scientific copy editor.”
Cormac McCarthy, arguably the greatest living American fiction writer (the argument extends to Roth, Morrison, maybe DeLillo) served as the copy editor of a recent biography of physicist Richard Feynman, Quantum Man. He also provided similar service on two books written for a general readership by Harvard physicist Lisa Randall.
While known to some here I presume, McCarthy’s magnificent body of work includes Child of God, Outer Dark, The Border Trilogy, No Country for Old Men, The Road, and the supreme Blood Meridian.
Mitchell and Webb crack me up. Not always great, but so often very, very good.
Mitchell and webb are on netflix
@handsmile: you got me!
that is awesome. that is a whole new perspective on McCarthy for me.
have you read Richard Morgan?
my absolute fave, and totally prescient. i think good scifi is how we test drive the future before we get there.
Mitchell & Webb also have their way with pseudo-science. Try the one with the homeopathic emergency room doctors.
I can’t believe it is between 600 and 750 days since The Event, and you haven’t seen the Quiz Broadcast!
First the Church, then Penn State, now the Boy Scouts may have a “culture of hidden sexual abuse”
Mitchell & Webb’s first 2 seasons of “That Mitchell & Webb Show” (the TV series) are fucking awesome. As is the run of “That Mitchell & Webb Sound”, the preceding radio series.
Angel Summoner and BMX Bandit. Big Talk with Raymond Terrific. Get Me Hennimore’s “Go Home Day”. And so many more.
@Herb: Well, at least they’re not lesbians. ummm. I guess.
@handsmile: An anecdote: Both Cormac McCarthy and I are generously acknowledged in Lisa Randall’s books. In the first one, at least in the hardcover edition, I was perturbed to find my name misspelled; not a tragedy of course, but still, a little deflating.
I called Lisa on it (in good fun, of course) and she pointed out what I had not noticed: Cormack (sic!) McCarthy had suffered the same fate.
Lisa had caught both errors in proofs, (and probably more besides, though I don’t know that for sure) but her publisher somehow failed to fix them. (Also — as copy editor, McCarthy would have worked off a manuscript, not the typeset galleys, so he wouldn’t have had a chance to catch such foofaraw.)
Anyway, when I saw that surplus “k” I smiled. It is, no doubt, as close as I can hope to come to keeping literary company with Cormac McCarthy.
That is way, way, way more common than you realize. It’s so frustrating to send corrected proofs to the editors, only to have them send “new” galleys that contain the exact same errors (plus bonus new ones!)
And it’s even worse since almost everything gets printed overseas now. We had a non-English-reading printer “fix” the punctuation in one of our catalogs because he didn’t think it looked right.
@Tom Levenson: Terrific story.
@Mnemosyne: Ow ow ow. my firm was at least lucky in that our printers (early) knew the publication as well as we did and would pass back possible errors in real time. GSD I miss them.
Perhaps off topic even for an open thread: do you know how challenging operating a computer with an affectionate cat?
@John Weiss: Even the East
German judge would acknowledge the 3.1 degree of difficulty there.
my favorite article from journal of irreproducible results: a mathematical proof that a stopped clock has less error (in aggregate over a 24 hour period) than a clock that is two minutes off. i got a bit lost in the differential equations that described the stopped clock’s error when the time was infinitesimally close to the actual time so i don’t think i can reproduce it but it became a chestnut around my office for years.
Slight correction: the radio series isn’t “preceding” in the sense of having been discontinued as they moved to TV, it’s continued as the TV series has. There have been four series of the radio show (2003-2009, 24 half-hour episodes) and four series of the TV show (2006-2010, 24 half-hour episodes).
The two series often use more or less the same scripts as the radio series. I think some of the sketches (especially Sir Digby Chicken Caesar) work better on the radio.
@Comrade Mary: The German soldier bit is my favorite of everything they’ve done.
Also check out their sitcom “Peep Show.”
It seemed like the TV made them really realize the implications of Sir Digby Chicken Caesar, because what they came up with was unexpectedly poignant.
Comedy about hopeless alcoholics works better when you can’t see them, I guess.