Illustration by Angelica Alzona

Time for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? Email the Funbag. Today, we’re covering rich guy hair, cartoon voices, steakhouses, paper airplanes, and more.

Your letters:

Ian:

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Elon Musk is trying to populate Mars, but is it ethically okay to have a kid in that kind of an environment? It’s one thing to say, ‘Screw Earth. I’m getting away from all of it and going to a barely survivable planet.’ But the kid not only doesn’t have any say in the matter. They don’t have a way to get back to the good planet with all the people and stuff. They just have to live in a tent. Could you imagine being a horny 12-year-old, then seeing a video of people at the beach and knowing, not only can you not get there, you can’t go outside? I’d be upset.

I understand that hypothetical, horny 12-year-old’s frustration, but the whole point of Musk’s Mars plan (apart from drilling into the center of Mars, unearthing its secret diamond core, nuking it into sellable gems, becoming history’s first trillionaire as a result, and then buying God) is to make Mars a permanent human settlement with over 200,000 people. That means you NEED to have kids if you go there.

In fact, I bet Musk already has a clandestine re-population plan in place. Infertile men and women will be tested and then stricken from the passenger manifest. Parents will be encouraged to have three children but no more than that. Very small orphans will be used to manually work the crankshaft in the rocket engine. All of those plans are sitting in the SpaceX “white room” as we speak. The idea is to make Mars habitable for mankind in case Earth dies. That way, we get to keep on living. Sure, we’ll be trapped inside a sterile white enclosure on a desolate wasteland of a planet for all eternity, but that’s half the fun!

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I don’t think anyone who volunteers to go die on Mars should feel conflicted about having children there. Children are born into all kinds of shitty circumstances: war, poverty, oppressive regimes, the late ‘90s music scene, etc. I know there are people who wring their hands and are like, “Oh, I can’t bring children into this cruel world!”, but that’s insane. No one has control over the world around them, and they never will. You’d never have kids if that was the sole criteria for procreation. If you want kids and you’re a responsible adult, you should have them. It may not be ideal for the kid, but everyone learns to adjust. SUCK IT UP, TIMMY.

The point of having kids, apart from the sweet tax deduction, is because children give you hope. Living on Mars may be horrible and shitty, and the WiFi reception will be awful, but at least you’ll have ONE thing that makes you happy … one thing that can give you some comfort and affirm that life has meaning and is well worth living. Children give you faith that things can get better, and hopefully you do likewise for them.

And maybe that kid will grow up to be a genius who figures out how to make Mars’s atmosphere tolerable for humans, so that we can spread out across the Martian landscape and walk around outside. He could be a hero! Because of him, we could build parks, and neighborhoods, and fast-casual restaurants! Then we could stake out property, and build walls, and start wars, and litter, and plunder all of the planet’s precious Xzybentium, and then relocate to Saturn once we’ve bled the place dry. Tell me that wouldn’t be sweet. You always need hope, even if that hope is misplaced.

Jorge:

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Let’s say you wake up in a hospital, but something’s off, your voice and manner of talking are different. You have the entire universe of cartoons or animated to choose from. Which character do you pick? I’d have to say Foghorn Leghorn for me, the dude was confident, had a distinct stutter, charming and could always come up with a good turn of phrase.

I understand wanting that genteel, Southern gentleman accent. I SAY I SAY I SAY BOY! But fuck that. I’ll take Mufasa. If I had James Earl Jones’s voice, I would feel like a god. I would be in the supermarket and accidentally bump into someone and they’d say “Excuse me” and then I would say, “No. It is I who begs to be excused,” and then they would stand before me in AWE. That would be tremendous. Finally I would sound like a real man, instead of a humpback whale on caffeine pills.

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Also, I can dial that voice down a bit if I want. When James Earl Jones orders a sandwich, he’s not going Full God with his voice. He can subdue it and sound normal. That wouldn’t be true if you chose, say Yosemite Sam’s voice. That would be fun for exactly five minutes before realizing that you have to have sex with that voice, too. YOU LIKE THAT COCK, YA IDJIT?!

 Matthew:

What’s the best steakhouse chains ranked? I’m referring to Longhorn, Outback, etc. I suppose Ruth’s Chris and Morton’s can fall into the category, but it has to be national chain and not just a place that has multiple locations.

It’s probably one of the high-end chains like Ruth’s Chris or Morton’s. But honestly, I’m not qualified to answer this because I barely ever go to steakhouses. You don’t need steakhouses. They’re dark, and solemn, and hugely overpriced. You gotta drop $50 on a decent cut, and twice that on the wine. I love steak, and I love houses, but the only reason to go to a steakhouse is because you’re some dickhead banker and you want to performatively drop $500 for a group dinner and then pass around a bunch of cigars to your asshole buddies. “And then I grabbed her by the pussy! HIGH FIVE!”

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The only steakhouse I regret never having been to is Fogo De Chao, or one of the other Brazilian steak joints that offers all-you-can-eat meat on a stick. I’m all about that. I can’t cook meat on a sword at home. But otherwise, you’re better off making a steak yourself. Buy a nice thick cut, like a strip or a ribeye. Sprinkle with a shitload of kosher salt. Rub it with a mix of brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder, pepper and a little bit of coffee. Sear it dark brown on both sides in a cast iron skillet (a few minutes each side), stick the skillet in a 350-degree oven until it’s a little firm but not stiff (hehehehe), take it out to rest for 10 minutes, and BOOM. Steakhouse-quality steak, without all the stuffy bullshit.

God, now I really want steak. When I cook a steak right, I’m so disgustingly proud of myself. I take pictures. I bring it up YEARS after the fact. “Remember that steak I made?” It’s appalling behavior.

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Susanne:

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If furniture and appliances could talk, which would have the most blackmail material? I’m thinking bed, toilet, fridge, DVR. The computer is exempt because it can basically already blackmail us with browser history data.

The fridge would be way down on the list because the most shameful thing you can do in front of the fridge is overeat, which is something most people do anyway. If my fridge came alive and said to me, “Gimme a million bucks or I spill the beans about you eating jam right out of the jar,” I would laugh right in its stupid Whirlpool face. That fridge has got nothing on me compared to the following six non-computing devices:

  1. Desk/Desk chair. It knows what you’ve been looking at online AND where you’ve stashed the hitman slush fund. Also, it knows how bad your ass smells.
  2. Car seat. I am at my worst in a car. People act in cars the way they do online, so if a tape ever leaked of me screaming “YOU RED CUNT” at another driver, and then wiping a booger on the floormat, I could see that causing real problems for me.
  3. Toilet. Not only has it seen everything, but it’s probably quite upset about it.
  4. Dryer. It knows about all your stains.
  5. Bathroom mirror. I may have had words with it.
  6. Bed. This belongs on the list for obvious reasons, but personally speaking, there’s not much surprising going on there. If anything, I could turn the tables on my bed trying to extort me. All I wanted to do was nap and beat off, Serta. IS THAT SO WRONG?!

 

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Andrew:

At what point during a baseball game do you forfeit your right to your specific seat? Say you roll in with 4 friends in the middle of the 4th inning, are you in the right to force people to move from your seat after missing over an hour of game action? Which brings me to, why can’t people show up on time for baseball games? It seems like people are always coming in late and making scenes with ballpark staff. Just get there on time and everything will be ok, right?

You’re not gonna like this, but my take is that your seat is always your seat, and you can come and go from it as you see fit. You never forfeit rights to that seat if you paid for it. If some fuckball takes your seat because you were stuck in traffic on your way in, he has NO right to claim squatter’s rights. He took a gamble that you wouldn’t show up at all, and he lost. He has to move. And if he refuses, he deserves to be thrown off the upper deck.

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I know how enraging it is when people waste perfectly good seats at a sporting event. They probably got the tickets through work, so they don’t really give a shit about showing up on time or staying until the bitter end. I have seethed at these people. I have wedged into their seats, hoping they don’t show up, only to be crestfallen when they do, then retreating back to my seat in the nosebleeds, ranting and raving about how I deserve to be in the better seat instead of Billy Steakhouse. But your ticket is your ticket, man. We have to abide by what the ticket says or else there would be anarchy.

Kevin:

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What is the best breakfast sandwich bread, ranked from 1-6? English muffin, croissant, toast, bagel, soft shell tortilla, roll?

I’ll put the tortilla at No. 1 but only because I have a fetish for breakfast tacos and burritos. Like, I enjoy eggs and bacon and cheese on their own. But tell me that you’ve housed them inside a white flour tortilla and I will freely ejaculate about the room. Ohhhhhhh, breakfast burrito. Oh, you are so warm and soft. When I die, I want to be wrapped IN a giant tortilla and then buried, so that the ants and grubs get an extra special treat feasting upon my bones.

If we’re sticking to your listed options and excluding bolillos, McGriddle pancakes, and other breadstuffs, I’m listing them like this:

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  1. Tortilla
  2. English muffin
  3. Roll (a bigass roll, like the kind you get at a New York deli)
  4. Toast
  5. Croissant
  6. Bagel*

*This is strictly for egg sandwiches, and not lox sandwiches, which are a whole different thing. My stance on bagel sandwiches is already somewhat well known.

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HALFTIME!

Dan:

Did paper airplanes, at least in form, exist before real airplanes? Were they referred to as paper birds or maybe paper dragons?

Apparently, the stock paper airplane model was first designed by a dude named Jack Northrop back in the 1930s, well after the advent of modern aviation. Prior to that, things get a bit murkier, because paper was used in the design of other flying objects, like kites and hot air balloons. But I think you can safely assume that before planes existed, mankind had to conceive of them, and so the idea of planes has been around for longer—far longer—than planes themselves. Some dude way back when probably tried to fold up a winged paper airplane without calling it a plane, then he brought it to his papa and said, “Papa, Papa! I have given this paper the gift of flight!” And then Papa probably took that paper plane and threw it in the fire and smacked the shit out of the kid for practicing black magic and not restocking the coal box. That’s how things worked back in the olden days.

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Regardless of when it happened, I can guarantee that first paper airplane flew longer and straighter than any paper airplane I’ve ever tried to make. I’m fed up with paper airplanes, frankly. The Northrop design is garbage. I’ll make one for my kid, launch it, and it immediately shoots straight up before nosediving back down to the floor, killing every last imaginary soul on board. Even when I staple the fucker, it won’t fly right.

In order to make a paper airplane fly properly, you have to follow diagrams and schematics that require an engineering degree from CalTech. If I have to fold it more than five times, I’m hopelessly lost. I’m gonna fuck up a crease. I’m gonna fold one side all nice and even, and run my fingernail along it to seal like a pro, and then the other one will be WAY off alignment, with no hope of fixing it after I’ve committed to the fold. It’s the worst.

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By the way, they have paper airplane championships. Look at these assholes. They’re way too into paper planes and need to get a life imho, unless they teach me how to effortlessly make an F-15 fight jet out of construction paper. Then I’ll re-evaluate the coolness of their nerdfest.

 

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Jeff:

Bob Kraft has a mullet! Either that or he’s starting to actually transform INTO Donald Trump like Jeff Goldblum becoming Brundlefly. Trumplekraft.

 

 

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I say that’s not a mullet. I put this photo to the rest of the staff to describe Kraft’s hair. Here is what they offered:

  • “rich guy haircut”
  • “it looks like it’s carved out of marble”
  • “That’s old timey British judge wig hair”
  • “it just looks like old-guy hair”
  • “Frat Boy Thomas Jefferson”
  • “skiing on the alps w sleazy rich guy sunglasses hair”
  • “half-deaf classical composer hair”
  • “Cut-rate Leon Wieseltier”
  • “lazy”

Got all that? It’s not a mullet. It’s some combination of the above descriptions. Kraft is probably jealous of Tom Brady’s seasonal hairdo and tries to change things up accordingly. Or his girlfriend told him it looked good long, and then he grew it out. If a woman tells you that you look cute with a braided mustache, you get a braided mustache. That’s just common sense.

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I have done the thing where you grow your hair a little longer than usual, and then you feel like a real wild child. MY GOD I COULD RIDE A HARLEY WITH THIS HAIR! Then you get it cut and feel like a super-sleek banker, wondering why you ever get it grow too long in the first place. And then the cycle repeats itself. It’s pretty cool.

 

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Octavis:

I just finished eating a burger for dinner and it made me wonder what dinner items can be eaten the fastest? My initial thought was pizza, but the crust gives me pause. My ranking would go hotdog, pizza, hamburger.

Is everything at an edible temperature? Because the only thing stopping me from eating a hot dog in 0.2 seconds is the prospect of snapping into a frankfurter fresh off the grill and getting third degree burns from hot wiener juice (no laughing). Often, high temps are the only thing protecting you from lethal gluttony.

If everything is at room temperature, I think the No. 1 answer is a chicken drumstick. It’s two bites, maybe three. I finish it off instantly and then scour the ends of bone, searching for bits I missed. Sometimes there’s that nub of meat that’s close to the knuckle up top. I make sure that’s accounted for. And the skin clinging to the other end! I chew away at that, too. I can’t tell you how disappointing it is to eat a piece of chicken quickly, only to realize there’s no chicken left to eat. I go from zero to hobo in no time flat. DON’T THROW AWAY THAT WING TIP.

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Bradley:

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Is there a hotel room in Vegas in which sex has not been had? For simplicity’s sake, let’s limit it to hotels on the strip that have been open for more than a year.

They’ve all been compromised many times over. Every Vegas hotel room has borne witness to sex, drug use, assault, and people crying to folk music because no one is watching them.

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By the way, do vibrating beds REALLY exist? I’ve been to a lot of towns, and stayed in some shit hotels, but I’ve NEVER actually seen one of those coin-operated vibrating beds that they show in old movies and TV shows. Do those still exist? Did they REALLY help you fuck better? One day I’m gonna stumble into a hotel room with a vibrating bed, and that’s when I’ll know I’m in a bad spot.

 

Austin:

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Has all the good food already been created? My biggest fear is that I’ve already tried all the good food stuff in the world. Am I done putting new foods into my face? Or will some random underrated dishes eventually rise to prominence?

You’re not done. More good food stuff is coming. The entire restaurant industry is basically the same as the fashion industry, with fartsniffer chefs who are obsessed with inventing BOLD FLAVORS charging $500 a head to foodies willing to paddle to a Danish island to try the hottest food craze, like dandelion sushi or whatever the fuck. These people are making runway food, coming up with newfangled dishes that get copied by other chefs and eventually slip into the fast food mainstream. Ten years ago, Korean tacos didn’t exist. Now you can buy them in the frozen food aisle. Next year, Bon Appetit will declare bourbon mayo the hot new thing, and then McDonalds will start selling the McBourbon Deluxe to stupid people. So prepare your tongue for that.

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Andrew:

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When doing self-checkout at the grocery store, do you bag each item after you scan it, or do you set the items aside and bag them all as a group when you’re done with the whole batch? Most people (including me) do the former, but I periodically see folks do the latter and I get angry at them for wasting time. But does that actually take more time, or are they just re-arranging the same amount of time? Do I have a right to be pissed at them? Can I throw cans of soup at them?

It all depends on the setup. A lot of self-checkout registers still have the long conveyor belt, so you have to scan all your shit, watch it pile up at the end of the belt like a factory accident, and then go bag it while some asshole behind you starts scanning and shoots your dirty looks for not getting your shit out of the way fast enough. I fucking hate everything about that scenario.

This is why a lot of stores now have the bags right by the register now, so that you can scan your shit, bag it quickly as you go, put the bag in your cart, watch the register freak out because you took the food off the scale too soon, listen in horror as the robot lady voice says PLEASE STAND BY, HELP IS ON THE WAY, and then silently fume as the clerk takes 20 minutes to help you. God, I fucking hate self-checkout. What was your question again?

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Anthony:

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What profession has the highest rate of “Fuck this, I’m out of here” spontaneous quitting? On merit, it should be hotel room cleaning, but that’s an older workforce that probably needs the job more. Fast food probably has the most for sheer numbers, but my money’s on door-to-door fundraising or sales for highest percentage.

I think it’s any cold-calling job. I did cold-calling for one day and it was easily the worst day of my life. You’re calling strangers (in the middle of dinner), reading a prepared script that you don’t have the heart to deliver with gusto, and then listening to them angrily hang up. I would say that 99 percent of cold-calling jobs are NOT listed as cold-calling jobs. They’re branded as “exciting marketing opportunities!” and shit like that. The second new employees are escorted into a call center, they begin furiously planning their exit.

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Second place is waiting tables because the pay is lousy, the hours are late, the chefs are dicks, the customers are even worse, and the workforce is mostly young and single and has the emotional stability of Trump tweeting at 3 a.m. It’s the perfect storm of immature people and stressful environment. I spent every day running tables fantasizing about either quitting or murdering my boss outright.

 

Email of the week!

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Zane:

This is a story about the time my ship, the USS Iwo Jima, visited Costa Rica. A little background first though for anyone who has never served on a ship. When sailors go ashore during a port visit they usually have a curfew. Also the area someone comes aboard or leaves a ship is called the quarterdeck, and when in port crew members are posted there 24/7 to make sure anyone crossing it is properly vetted.

Anyways, people are always coming and going but right before curfew expires there is a mass rush to return and the quarterdeck can get rather hectic due to the crush of humanity. Well on this particular night after the crowd dispersed someone on watch noticed something someone had left behind. It was a human turd. No one knows where it came from and I wish I could tell you it was my only story about mystery shit from my time in the Navy (it isn’t by a longshot).

Remind me to never ever join the Navy. Hey, let’s do a bonus one!

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Drew (not me):

I was in Wilmington, NC last year to visit my old college town and my buddies and I stopped at a place called Mission BBQ. It’s a chain that markets itself based on its pride for military, fire, police, and first responders. They have military garb all over the wood panelled walls and every cup you buy gives a donation to something involving police or veterans. It was convenient and close to campus so we went in. We got a food and sat down at a booth to start eating. Halfway through the meal the country music stopped and a very robust sounding voice came on the loud speaker and said, “Here at Mission Barbecue, we strive every day to honor those who serve our country. Every day at noon we play the national anthem. Please rise and remove your hats to honor our stars and stripes”. My friends and I were caught completely off guard and looked around as every worker at the counter stopped what they were doing and put their hands over their hearts. There was only one other table of elderly couples who stood at attention as well. We were caught so off guard by what was happening we didn’t know what to do so we just sat there as the booth was kind of awkward to get out of. They played a generic marching band version of the anthem and one of the old guys got emotional over it and then it ended and everyone went about their business. We awkwardly finished our meal and as we were walking out we got death glares from the geezers. Top ten most uncomfortable moment in my life for sure.

I can see that.