Saturday, May 17, 2008

Things Younger Than McCain

As long as we slipped in political non-commentary this week... let's add more.

Things Younger Than McCain (TYTM) is an ageist humor website written anonymously by a Barak supporter, designed to post smears at Republican presidential nominee John McCain (b. August 29, 1936). It lists things that are younger than John McCain.

The Huffington Post and WaPo unmasked the site's author as Steve Rosenthal, a former political director at the AFL-CIO and executive director of America Coming Together. The site is both horrible and horribly funny.

I resisted featuring TYTM earlier not because I agree or disagree with its Machiavellian goal, but because it's kind of shallow and one-sided. You know, like When Obama Wins, Barak Obama is Your New Bicycle, or the entire Interwebs. But today is different. After some soul-searching, the author went meta and wrote TYTM's latest entry on why TYTM isn't ageist. Contrary to its thesis, the post doesn't provide compelling evidence as to why TYTM isn't ageist so much as offers apologies for why it's okay to be ageist. (I guess it could be worse. At least the post doesn't go on tangents explaining why women or people of color are in fact suitable for presidential office...)

I say don't ruin the joke or apologize for it. Just run with it.

The delightful part of the website is the non-politically related part: discovering things you think of as really old are in fact only moderately old. I couldn't stop flipping through until I read all of it. A few things I had no idea were younger than John: nylon, the Hindenburg disaster, Grapes of Wrath, the TV dinner, Baskin Robbins, defibrilation on people, Obama's mama, the Golden Gate bridge, Kodachrome, Bugs Bunny, Alaska, and the AARP (the association itself, not all its members' ages combined).

After the thorough reading, I thought about the incredible speed of our technological progress. Then I came to the conclusion that I must have been asleep for 3/4 of my history classes, as opposed to a previously estimated figure of 1/2.

I love the accompanying pictures. But what's with the pixel barf at the end of each post? I know, I know, it's self-advertisement for the site, but they make something that doesn't look like a Tetris game cracked open all over the floor? Fanks.

B - for Baraktastic.
(From my friend T.J.)

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