The 2004 Trenchie Awards

It’s the post that I look forward to all year long. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the 4th annual Trenchie awards. The best and worst of my year as voted for by me. Let’s get right to it.

Best Move I’ve Seen This Year:
Veronica Guerin. This movie about an Irish journalist is assassinated by drug dealers she wrote about in a series of stories moved me in a way that I’ve never been moved before. I was first made aware of the story by the song “Veronica Guerin” off the Savatage album “Wake of Magellan”. If you get a chance check out both the movie and the CD.

Worst Movie I’ve Seen This Year:
There were a plethora of movies to choose from this year. There was the unspeakable 13th Child which was supposed to be a horror movie about the legend of the Jersey Devil. I don’t know what that crap was though. Then there was the British indie flick Blood about a girl who was genetically altered to have narcotic blood. It’s only saving grace was gratuitous nudity. But the winner/loser has to be Elephant. This movie about a Columbine-like school shooting has to be the most boring piece of crap I’ve ever seen. The critics creamed their jeans over this movie calling its writer/director Gus Van Sant a genius. As usual, the critics are on crack. It was like having a tooth drilled with no novocaine for 81 minutes.

Best Album of the Year:
This was tough. It was a pretty good year for music. There was Master of the Moon by the metal god that is Dio. There was also Inner Circle by Evergrey. However, this year’s winner took the title early and never let go. It was The Glorious Burden by Iced Earth. Their first album with new vocalist and one-time Judas Priest frontman Tim “Ripper” Owens. A themed album that dealt mostly with the history of war. This album is the definition of metal.

Worst Album of the Year:
The Neon God Part 1: The Rise by W.A.S.P. The first part of a concept album released by the lesser of the metal gods Blackie Lawless. While I am a huge fan of the first W.A.S.P. concept album The Crimson Idol this one just doesn’t even come close. Made me not want to pick up Vol 2.

Best TV Show of the Year:
The winner and new champion is House the medical drama on Fox. It knocked 24 out of the top spot since season 3 of 24 was all over the map in terms of storyline. House is about a doctor who solves patients diagnoses that other doctors can’t discern. Did I mention that he hates people? My kind of doctor.

Worst TV Show of the Year:
I have to give dishonorable mention to The 4400. The concept of that show started out great about 4400 people who were returned to earth after being abducted by aliens through the past 7 decades and returning with no knowledge of them being gone or having aged a day. Then they all started getting SUPERPOWERS. I stopped watching at that point. But the winner/loser has to go to Stephen King’s Kingdom Hospital. This show was so painful to watch. Stephen King should just stick to books.

Best Wrestling Moment of the Year:
Eddie Guerrero and Chris Benoit winning their respective world titles at Wrestlemania XX. It showed that popular world champions don’t have to be big juiced out freaks. Sadly from what I hear we’re getting more huge juiced out freaks in the future from Vinny Mac.

Worst Wrestling Moment of the Year: Apparently the WWE is very tightfisted about allowing people to post pics on the web. Bastards. Anyway, it has to be the Lita/Kane pregnancy angle. Not only was this possibly the worst storyline ever it may also go down in history as the most offensive. Plus it’s the angle that put old moon face himself Gene Snitsky on our TVs. That should be reason enough right there.

Best Video Game of the Year:
I know what you’re saying. What about Halo? What about San Andreas? I have one word for you. Baaaaaaaaaa. Front Mission 4 from Square-Enix was the most engrossing and addictive game I played all year. It’s a turn-based tactics style game where you battle evil in giant robots armed with giant machine guns, shotguns, and missiles. Honorable mention has to go to Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne. A groundbreaking RPG. Instead of saving the world the world has already been destroyed and you have to survive. My only complaint is that some of the levels are long and boring.

Worst Video Game of the Year:
Samurai Warriors by Koei. While Little Jay and myself are big fans of the hack and slash Dynasty Warrior series, Samurai Warriors didn’t live up to its predecessors. The incredibly lousy camera angles totally ruined any chance of decent gameplay.

Best Movie Line of the Year:
From The Boondock Saints when Rocco fondles the passed out strippers breast. Connor MacManus says”What the fuck are you doing?” Rocco screams “I’ll tip her”. I’m not doing it justice. See the movie.

Biggest Dumbass of the Year:
Bruce Friedrich of PETA who compared the chickens KFC uses to the time in our country when blacks were used as slaves.

Most Inane Political Agenda of the Year:
Remember the woman who refused to have a C-section and ended up killing one of her babies that we lovingly refer to as Scarzilla. Well at the time of her court appearances pro-death organizations like NOW, NARAL and the ACLU were saying that the prosecutors attempt to charge her with murder was somehow a conspiracy against abortion rights.

Biggest Jackass Celebrity of the Year: My wife gave me the idea for this one. Everyone’s favorite skank ho Brittney Spears. Two marriages, one over in less than 24 hours. The other to a no-name dancer with no prenup while his ex-girlfriend was pregnant with his child. Going into gas station bathrooms in bare feet. And the list goes on and on. You can take the girl out of the trailer park but you can’t take the trailer park out of the girl.

That’s it for this year kids. Have a safe Amateur night.

Marshfield: The Year in Review

A tragedy prevented, a town shocked:

This article seems like a year in review of the Marshfield High plot incident. It’s actually a pretty good article but I have to take issue with a couple of things…

However parents of MHS students said the harsh media spotlight was particularly difficult for their children. At a PTO meeting shortly after the initial news conference, parents told principal Robert Keuther that many of their kids had expressed bewilderment at seeing news cameras and reporters outside their school, on top of just finding out one of their classmates may have been planning to kill them.

Oh no, not bewilderment. :-O Anything but that. In the grand scheme of things seeing reporters outside their school is low on the list of things that will harm your child. I love it when the media and the soccer moms get together. And if the media didn’t show up they’d be complaining about the fact that it wasn’t being reported.

This from Joseph Nee’s father…

“Everybody keeps calling this a Columbine. It’s not a Columbine because my son had the courage and conviction to come forward,” Thomas Nee said.

Coming forward to accuse someone who may not have been involved is not courage and conviction. It’s called covering your own ass and deflecting the blame.

From Joseph Nee’s attorney…

Drechsler, Nee’s attorney, pointed out that while Toby Kerns has a criminal history, getting arrested several times for breaking and entering, and that he also has been treated in a psychiatric facility, Nee has never been in trouble with a law or treated for mental illness.

Let me see, a cop’s son who has never “been in trouble with the law”. I wonder why that is. Being a cop’s son can go a long way in getting out of trouble with the local police. And just because Nee was never treated for mental illness doesn’t mean he’s not mentally ill. I offer the following as evidence of that…

Nee also reportedly wore a homemade shirt with the date of the Columbine massacre and “Remember the Heroes” – a reference to Columbine killers Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris – written on it in German to school several times. At one point he dressed as Harris for Halloween at school.

There’s no reportedly about it. I’ve had more than one Marshfield student e-mail me or leave me a comment that says that actually happened. Not to cast aspersions here but I’m going to. What kind of father, let alone what kind of cop, would let their kids out of the house wearing clothes that pay tribute to known killers?

The more I read about this incident the more I start to think that Tobin Kerns was just a scapegoat. Especially since, as I’ve said before, that so many people have contacted me in defense of Tobin Kerns and I have yet to hear from one person in defense of Joseph Nee.

That speaks volumes.

Jerry Orbach Dies

orbach

Law and Order’s Jerry Orbach Dies:

I’m sure Law and Order fans everywhere are in mourning today as Jerry Orbach, who played Detective Lenny Briscoe for 12 years on the series, passed away at the age of 69 from prostate cancer.

I’m a huge fan of Law and Order and I am saddened by his passing. I even remember the episode where he played an attorney seasons before he became Lenny Briscoe. He was supposed to have been starring in the next L&O spin-off.

My prayers and condolences go out to Mr. Orbach’s friends and family. He will be missed by this fan.

No Sympathy for Killers

Occasionally I lurk at message boards and discussion groups that are sympathetic or downright worship killer scumbags, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold. Even after 5 years, I am still amazed at some of the things that people post. For example, I found this posted the other day on one of the discussion groups…

My heart goes out to Eric and Dylan: they were normal kids who played soccer and baseball, who planned on going to college or joining the military. They had normal parents and friends, they were not the monsters that the media—based on very little information—made them out to be after the fact. I am so glad I have found other people here who actually understand that!

Yeah, they were just normal kids. As we all know all normal kids stockpile weapons and explosives in their house and go on to kill 13 people. Just your average normal kids. Ok, sarcasm aside what bothered me most about this post that it wasn’t from some angst-ridden goth wanna be high school kid. After checking the author’s website it turns out that the author is a well dressed, well behaved, well spoken, college student. One of my fears is that this “sympathy for killers” mindset will start to gain legitimacy in the mainstream. Which I guess means I have to repeat myself once again for the sake of common sense…

ahem…

First of all, I don’t think that Harris and Klebold were bullied. If anything they were the bullies themselves. Even if they were it’s no excuse to gun down 13 people who had little to no connection with them. They did not have normal parents. They had parents who were obviously very lax in their parenting skills. Allowing an arsenal to be amassed under their noses is proof of that, not to mention the fact that the Klebolds feel like they did nothing wrong. They may not be monsters to you but considering they’re mass murderers the term monster might not be that much of a stretch.

Nothing that ever happened to those two scumbags warranted the merciless execution of 13 people. Harris and Klebold were not victims nor martyrs nor heroes. They were nothing but cowards undeserving of anyone’s praise for their actions.

12/26/04: From The Mail Sack

Merry Christmas, it’s time to bring on the love as we actually have some mail for the first time in a while.

Just one piece though and it was left in my latest guestbook…

Monday, December 20, 2004 08:27 AM

From: Ugabuga

Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold are my hero’s

Hail REB, Hail VoDkA

there story made its way all the way to the bloody land of israel.

were, sadly, i live.

i personly think it was heroic, it is a dream for me to do something in that standerd… allthou i have plans of my own 🙂

keep killing

Hail? Hail huh? Who uses the word “hail” anymore unless you’re talking about precipitation. Sounds like you were using it in the context of the German “heil”. I’m assuming that since you claim to be from Israel and your IP address traced back to The Hebrew University of Jerusalem that you’re Jewish. If that is the case then I find it ironic that you worship two murdering, rotting in hell scumbags like Harris and Klebold who in their own right just about worshipped Hitler. You know that guy, don’t you? Funny haircut, little mustache, and oh yeah he slaughtered millions of your own people. You’re even worse than most of the American kids who worship these two scumbags because you’re a betrayer to your own country.

You can’t spell crackpot without ‘crack’

isellcrackforthecia

Gary Webb, reporter who exposed CIA, dies:

I love how the headlined says “exposed” but later in the article, it says he was disproved but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Gary Webb, the reporter who accused the CIA of selling crack on the streets of L.A., was found dead of a “self-inflicted” gunshot wound to the head. I put self-inflicted in quotes because I’m sure the TFH’ers will be mourning one of their own by claiming the CIA assassinated him.

The most telling quote is this…

Major parts of Webb’s reporting were later discredited by other newspaper investigations. An investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department found no evidence of a connection between the CIA and the drug traffickers.

So let me tell it to you straight kids. The CIA did not sell crack to fund the Contras or to keep the black man down. Thanks to Mr. Webb we have one more excuse for people not to take personal responsibility. That will be his legacy.

GTA: Grand Theft Apprehension

ABC13.com: Robbers scared off by Playstation game get jail time:

Last March, four would be burglars broke into a house where there were some kids playing GTA at the time. When they heard the police in the game say “Stop, we have you surrounded. This is the police.”, they thought it was the actual police and fled. The four men were arrested. Two are serving time, one got probation and the fourth is awaiting trial.

All of you busybodies are wrong about this game. It doesn’t cause violence, it saves lives.

As always it was your pleasure.

UPDATE: It turns out the Game Boy saves lives too. Is there anything video games can’t do?

Dimebag Darrell Killed

Former Pantera guitarist among 4 killed at club:

Metal lost one of its own when Dimebag Darrell Abbot of Pantera and Damageplan was shot and killed as Damageplan took the stage in a Columbus Ohio nightclub. The shooter was shot and killed by police after shooting and killing three others. While I am far from a Pantera fan my prayers and condolences go out to not only the Abbot family but to the families of the other victims as well.

So What?

Deadly revenge for bullied kids an absurd idea:

This is a great editorial from the Miami Herald by a man named Leonard Pitts Jr. who writes what I’ve been saying for years, bullying is no excuse to shoot up a school…

We have become sadly experienced with school massacres in recent years. We have seen many disaffected loners turn campuses into killing grounds. And then comes the inevitable explanation.

He was an outcast.

He was jilted by a girl.

The other kids bullied him.

And I repeat: So what?

And just like myself, Mr. Pitts has also been accused of not knowing what it’s like to be bullied…

My wife, who I’ve known since fifth grade, once had to run and get my folks after some boys jacked me up and tried to inject me with hypodermic needles they’d found in the trash behind a medical clinic.

Now that’s hardcore. How many of these Harris and Klebold wannabes have been harassed to the level of their tormentors wanting to inject them with medical waste? I can almost guarantee you not one of them. Did Mr. Pitts plan to shoot up a school? Not according to his article…

So yeah, I know a little something about being bullied. And yeah, too, I know something about wanting to mash the face of some jerk who’d made my days miserable.

There is, however, a gulf of difference between wanting to do that and wanting to indiscriminately massacre a schoolyard full of people.

It takes a special kind of arrogance, self-absorption and entitlement to believe that your humiliation and pain merit the lives of a dozen strangers.

Mr. Pitts also disagrees with the criminal as victim mentality and sums things up with an obvious question…

So to say a child killed people because he was bullied or ostracized is to dignify the act with false rationality — and to shift the onus for the crime to its victims.

I get impatient with hearing that because it explains everything and explains nothing, because it does not help me understand how a child can become so alienated from his own humanity and finally, because it does not address, much less answer, a question that ought to be painfully obvious.

Kids have been bullied and ostracized from the beginning of time. Why is it they are just now picking up guns?

Why indeed Mr. Pitts. Why indeed.

I’m not doing the piece justice at all. So click on the link at the top or check page 2 I have it archived there as well.

I’m not familiar with the rest of Mr. Pitts’ work but after reading this I think he deserves a Pulitzer.

A Little More From Valpo

Valpo teacher talks about stabbing:

There is not a whole lot of information forthcoming from the Valpo school stabbing incident. The only mention of a motive that I’ve found so far comes from this interview with the teacher in the class at the time of the incident.

Police reports later revealed Lewerke believed God directed him to do it because his classmates were “sinners.” While school violence is sometimes traced back to bullying, Dobis said she did not think that was the case. She told police Lewerke was a quiet student who got A’s and B’s and showed no signs of violence.

More on this if I receive anything.