Illustration: Sam Woolley (GMG)
FunbagTime for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? [Email the Funbag](mailto:funbag.deadspin@gmail.com).   

Joe:

You walk into your house and see your friends and family gathered for an intervention. What would the subject of the intervention have to be where you’d immediately be like “yeaaaa this makes sense.”

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It would have to be either for boozing or for phone use. Like I have definitely had my own children tell me to put my phone away, which is as sure a sign of a problem as you’ll ever get. They’re supposed to be the tech-addled generation, but I’m the one sneaking a look at Twitter any time they’ve got their heads turned. And you would think that being called out by my own kids would be enough to chasten me. You would think a Cat Stevens lullaby would start playing in my head and I would drop to my knees, tears streaming down my cheeks, begging for forgiveness from my own flesh and blood.

That does not happen. I definitely try to sneak another look five seconds later. I also have gotten hooked on indescribably lame phone games. Like, I downloaded this one game called Solitaire Grand Harvest, which is a bastardized solitaire where you progress through different wacky solitaire formations and earn “crops” after beating certain levels. I have no business playing this game. I should be reading. Playing this game is as pointless and wasteful as playing Candy Crush, and yet I have absolutely done a fist pump after winning a new eggplant crop while I’m on the toilet. These are not the actions of a man who can control his habits.

Fortunately for me, everyone else has the EXACT same problem, and so I don’t have to feel as bad about it. The truth is that Online Brain, like Rich Person Brain, is a legitimate national emergency but there’s virtually no health infrastructure in place to correct it. Americans’ online lives are becoming more and more divorced from their real lives, and that’s causing a whole shitload of problems. There should probably be as many Online Anonymous meetings as there are AA meetings, where you can just go for an hour and explain to complete strangers how you came to believe that NPR did 9/11. Courts should make attendance mandatory.

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Also, I really gotta stop picking my feet. And I should stop looking at fart porn. Oh, and I should stop killing people for money. Basically, I need to be torn down and rebuilt from the ground up.

Patrick:

Do you think owners like Dan Snyder that preside over years of losing and ridicule know they suck? Are they sitting in their office like, “Yeah, those people have some good points,” or are their heads so far up their own asses they don’t realize how much most people hate them?

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I think Dan Snyder knows people hate him, but I think he believes it’s all because he’s misunderstood and it’s all because the evil, unfair media has portrayed him as a scumbag. Like, I think he sits at home with his bottle of Crown Royal and just seethes about it. I gave that one tribe of redskins free blankets! How dare anyone think I’m insensitive? So instead of actively addressing his own assholery, guys like Snyder get fixated on the fact that they deserve a better public image, and more control over that image. That’s why he trots out clumsy corrective measures like #RedskinsFacts and tries to sue every naysayer into oblivion. Rather than engage with the public, Snyder would rather just seal himself up in a VIP room and let his resentment fester, until he straight up wants to hurt the ungrateful masses for not recognizing his brilliance and his generosity. They’re all fools and deserve to suffer.

He’s not alone in that regard, either. That kind of toxic resentment is the purview of pretty much every rich guy these days. I saw Elon Musk melt down on Twitter because people had the temerity to question both his motives and, even worse, his ability. And he’s supposed to be the SMART one! He’s supposed to get us to Mars and instead he’s tripping balls with his wedding DJ girlfriend at 3 a.m. and tweeting libel at people.

There’s also no real excuse for Jeff Bezos to keep $150 billion for himself, right? But he wants to keep it, and he believes that he deserves it by dint of both his hard work and his business acumen. And so to keep that money, and to sleep at night, he’s gotta concoct one elaborate justification after another, all the while nursing his hatred of people who would dare to question him. I BUILT THIS COMPANY UP FROM NOTHING!!!!

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I should note that this kind of behavior is, on a certain level, natural. No one wants to live life thinking they suck, and no one wants to think their life’s work was actually a damaging enterprise, and so you do the mental gymnastics required to keep your spirits up. I know I do! I know I sign off from my day thinking, “Drew, that was a fine day of BLOGGING. You did some good out there, brother!” It’s an especially predictable reaction from billionaire CEOs who have spent the bulk of their careers revered by colleagues and by the business media, and by an American culture that lionizes the self-made man. Rich Guy Brain has become a rampant epidemic now that anyone can log onto Twitter and call your local tech baron a shitbird. That’s what those guys deserve, but they’re clearly not emotionally equipped to handle it.

In my more optimistic moments, I think this time in history could potentially serve as an awakening to people, showing them these guys are partial frauds and that the American business model is inherently broken. But then I remember that Bezos will probably have us all killed with a Space Laser before we have a chance to do anything about it.

Tommy:

If your team has the ball somewhere around midfield with two seconds on the clock (say down by 2), what’s the last-ditch play with the greatest chance of success? Laterals, Hail Mary, or 60+ yard field goal?

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I can’t find any isolated stats on end-of-game lateral passes. But given that I only remember three times the hook-and-lateral-kakke actually worked (The Cal/Stanford play, Miami beating Duke, and the Saints doing it against Jacksonville only to lose because they botched the PAT), I think you can rule that out as an option, even though it’s my favorite kind of play in the world. I will always welcome more rugby in my football. They should encourage more insane laterals. I bet it would make the game safer. You can’t tackle a guy if he’s passed the ball! THOSE ARE THE FACTS.

So it’s down to the long field goal versus the Hail Mary. Here’s the breakdown of Hail Marys by distance:

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As you can see, once you’re out of Young-to-TO range, it’s a pretty steep dropoff. But it’s hard to tell if you should kick the prayer field goal, because the stats on long field goals that I looked up are all capped at 50+, and facing down a 51-yarder is a much different situation than facing down a 63-yarder. Even if I had proper stats for attempts over 60 yards, those stats would probably be inflated because coaches not named Jeff Fisher are EXTREMELY selective about when they to attempt kick from that distance. It could be that teams should attempt them more often because kickers have gotten so good. Then again, you really look like a dumbfuck when that kick falls 20 yards short of the crossbar, and not looking bad is what football is all about!

Nick:

What are the odds that our president:

1) still reads Penthouse (print or online, but probably print);

2) thinks the letters are real; and

3) had actually sent a ribald letter to Penthouse himself?

I put the odds of all three in the high nineties.

1) I think Trump, like me, soured on Penthouse back when they started showing ladies peeing in the photos. I also think he read Playboy religiously until they got rid of nudity, and isn’t aware that they went back. I believe he spends the bulk of his time privately complaining—YELLING—to staff about both these developments. “Why would you cover up such beautiful women? TERRIBLE! Illegal?”

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2) I don’t think he reads the letters because he doesn’t read.

3) I absolutely believe he’s written a letter himself under a poorly disguised nom de plume such as Troy Donaldson or John Barron or Ronald Milkman or Donald J. Goldheap. I also believe THAT letter is filled with abject lies, but that Trump believes all of those lies anyway. “And then, I received the most BEAUTIFUL BLOWJOB you’ve ever seen. You look at a blowjob… we all like blowjobs, right? This one was the BEST. And then… she paid ME for it. Special honor?”

I also believe Trump had to give up looking at Hustler magazine after Larry Flynt put a bounty on the pee tape, and so all that’s left for his masturbatory needs are an old poster of Heather Locklear and VHS copy of Hot Dog: The Movie that he taped over his own wedding.

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Doug:

Do you think you would be able to bowl a 300 with bumpers?

Nope. I take my kids bowling every now and then and I am the most embarrassing bowler you’ve ever seen. I leave the bumpers up when it’s my turn because I’m too lazy and too confused to change the options on my touch screen. You ever program a bowling alley? It takes 15 minutes, and someone always ends up accidentally bowling during someone else’s turn anyway, and I always have to go back because my kids want to change their screen name to WONDERBUTT.

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And even with the bumpers up, I can’t crack 100. You still have to be precise in your rolls to knock all the pins down, and I do not have such precision. That kind of ace bowling topspin is reserved for the Ernie McCrackens of the universe. I lose interest and energy after five frames. My back starts to hurt. The ball feels like it’s 1,000 pounds. I have actively sought out candlepin and duckpin alleys in the area so that I can roll a lighter ball. I absolutely can NOT fuck with the Jesus. I suck. The only reason I take the kids bowling is so they can eat chicken fingers somewhere new. I can’t even drink because I usually take them to the alley by myself and I can’t drive home loaded. I do bowling all wrong, even when I cheat.

Jack:

No one except small children and old men use washcloths? Right? God gave me two hands for a reason.

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I use a poof, because the poof is a proven scientific improvement over the traditional, boring-ass washcloth. I can make enough lather to fill an aircraft carrier with my poof, and I have! Look at all those bubbles! I’mma give myself a Santa Beard! I also don’t like applying the soap to my body directly, because it usually ends up slipping out of my hands before I even have a chance to get it on my belly, and then there’s a big load of Suave grapefruit body wash on the floor of the shower, ready to trip me up and break my fucking neck. I need a liaison between the soap and the applying of soap to my body, and the poof does the job expertly.

I think I’ve said this before, but I’m gonna tell the story because you’re just that lucky: When I was a kid, I used to lay the wet washcloth over my junk was I was in the tub, because it made me feel like Sexy Tarzan. To this day, that’s really the only viable application I see for a traditional wash cloth. They don’t lather up terribly well, and when they dry they get rock hard, like the sock your roommate keeps under his bed. I’m sticking with the poofy. BUT IRONHEAD!!!!

HALFTIME!

Jon:

Is bread a side dish?

Sure. If you use the bread to interact with the main dish (like soup), it makes sense to consider it a side dish. Like when you have a bowl of steaming hot mussels and you use the bread to sop up all those delicious, buttery sea juices? That’s the BEST. Sometimes I tear up the bread and just let it sit in the bowl, until it’s nearly disintegrated. That bread is a real team player. That’s the kind of needlessly unhealthy side dish I crave. Like, if it’s between bread and succotash, succotash can get the fuck out of my house.

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I think people tend to think of side dishes as things that come in a literal dish: beans, mashed potatoes, salads, etc. But as far as I’m concerned, pretty much anything that isn’t a slab of ribeye is a side dish. All non-steaks are in the supporting cast.

Paul:

There should be “Super Hall of Fames” right? Like the top 10, 15, or 20 in each professional sport are super-honored in their respective Halls. There are many examples of old-timey athletes in their sport’s HOF whose careers, by today’s standards, are ass. The Super Halls would have rolling revisions too so when Honus Wagner VIII comes around he can boot out a player no longer deserving of being super-honored. Take all the former super-honored player’s shit and donate it to charity or something. The NFL could sell it to help pay for the coming lawsuits!

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I can’t support your idea because you’re basically adopting the Simmons-y Hall of Fame pyramid idea, and because that Super Hall of Fame would essentially become the ONLY Hall of Fame. All the dudes in the jayvee Hall of Fame would be pissed they didn’t get into the REAL Hall of Fame, and I can’t blame them. It’s bad enough that players bust their asses for 10 years and then have to watch as a cabal of writers lock themselves in some conference room with Panera catering to decide who deserves to get in and who doesn’t. To add another layer to that process would be maddening. I would burn down buildings if my eternal legacy was in the hands of Mike Wilbon or some other fartsniffing schmuck sitting around and being like, “Well he was great, but was he UNITAS GREAT?”

Hall of Fame admissions are already based on the very fungible notion of what constitutes Greatness, and what’s hilarious is how many sportswriters will meticulously pore over stats and awards and ring counts and then be like, “All right, fuck all the numbers. WILL I TELL MY GRANDKIDS ABOUT THIS PLAYER?” It’s a strange process that is vulnerable to the stylistic preferences of a bunch of drunk old shitheads, and we need to scrap that process rather than add extra layers of subjectivity to it.

By the way, the whole Terrell Owens affair was a telling indictment of this process. TO is a dipshit and a shameless narcissist, but the fact that he felt compelled to hold his own ceremony didn’t shame that committee at all. Mostly, they were annoyed he disrespected the Hall. I bet half the dudes who voted for him wish they could rescind the honor. As always with the NFL, it’s more important that people respect the process than question it.

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Jason:

At pick up today another dad told me the secret of how he pays so little on electricity in the summer. They stick clothespins on the power cords of their fans and air conditioner. His theory is that it helps keep more electricity from escaping as waste and keeps more going into the appliance. Have you ever heard of this?

That’s completely fucking absurd and has no chance of ever working. But I’m still gonna try it, and that’s because I have spent the majority of my fatherhood terrified that I am not saving as much money as I could be saving. This applies to energy bills, retail shopping, TV and phone bills, tax season, and every other aspect of my existence. Every night I lay awake terrified that I have pissed away thousands of dollars because my windows aren’t properly sealed, or because I haven’t ditched Verizon for Smiletime Wireless, or because I drive a car instead of using some sort of pushcart.

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The worst is when someone proves to me that I really HAVE been wasting money. Like someone will say to me, “You mean you haven’t declared your home as a goat farm yet? I saved $5,000 a year that way!” And then they walk away and I am left quietly DEVASTATED. Is that… is that true? If that’s true, what else haven’t I done? I COULD HAVE OWNED A PORSCHE BY NOW INSTEAD OF DRIVING AROUND IN A KIA LIKE A TRUE LOSER!

Jeff:

You will be paid $1,000 for every hour you can sleep in a seven-day span. Your sleep will be monitored in some unobtrusive way. Any responsibilities you have that could get in the way would be taken care of, so your main focus can be sleeping. No chemical aids are allowed. What is your strategy and how many hours do you think you can get?

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I don’t think I would change any of my current sleep habits because I already sleep 8-9 hours a night, and I sleep better sober anyway. Having three kids is a remarkable sleep aid. By the end of any given day, I am ready for death. My Dad Sleep powers are strong. My wife is deeply jealous of them. Also: I may be a hopeless phone addict, but my one saving grace is that I turn off my phone and leave it downstairs every night when I go to bed, so that I can’t look at it. It’s just me and my sexy dreams up there.

Now, I say all of that knowing that I would probably average roughly two hours of sleep during your challenge. If there is PRESSURE to sleep, I cannot sleep. I’m fucked. Like, if I take a redeye flight and I know I better sleep on the plane because the next day will be rough if I don’t? Forget it. I’m fucking doomed. So I would practice all my best sleep habits that week and it wouldn’t matter because your little indecent proposal would be ALL I could think about. Every second I spend awake is lost money! As I said before, the dad in me would DIE knowing this. I sleep fitfully when I remember there’s something to worry about. Like, sometimes I’ll to go piss at 3 a.m. and think to myself OH GOD HOW ARE WE EVER GONNA PAY FOR COLLEGE?! Your bet would have a similar death grip on my psyche. I’m already angry about it. You go to hell, Jeff.

Eric:

What’s your ideal level of NFL parity?

I think the current level of NFC parity is fine and I think that the AFC should be blown up and sold for parts. I don’t wanna see the Pats or Steelers in a postseason for another two decades. America deserves a goddamn rest.

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Truthfully, the quality of NFL parity is wholly dependent on whether or not all the quarterbacks stay healthy. When all the quarterbacks get hurt, the league looks like a demolition derby for the blind. Results don’t feel terribly legitimate. When they’re all out there, things looks a lot more professional. I know I spend the entire preseason mocking bad quarterbacks, but if you look around the league as it stands now, right before the season, almost every team has a satisfactory QB situation. Not necessarily a GREAT one, but one that’s convincing enough to sucker in optimistic fans. Six weeks from now, all of that will go to shit and Matt Cassel will be starting for nine different teams simultaneously. That’s when people start using the word “parity” as an epithet.

Colin:

Is it possible to replace the baseball with a piece of fruit and still be able to play the game? I feel like it would be difficult to get a banana over the plate, and even a Dee Gordon swing would obliterate an orange. Are coconuts our only hope???

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Do nuts count as fruit? I think they do, right? I think your best hope would probably be a chestnut or a walnut. I bet old timers like Bob Costas would enjoy Chestnut Baseball. “This reminds me of watching The Mick back in 19-dickety-4!” Keith Olbermann probably has 97 different anecdotes about the time the Fort Pete Mule Sox had to use literal chestnuts to play games during The Great Rubber Famine of Aught Six.

Adam:

What will the Trump’s funeral be like? Will he sign people to contracts to speak at his funeral? What world leaders will actually show up? Will it just be Fox News personalities and scum like Sebastian Gorka, Dinesh D’Souza, and Sherri Joe, & Roger Stone? Can Melania not smile for the 9 hour (that Trump will demand in his will) ceremony?

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He will definitely banish more guests than he invites. The DO NOT INVITE list will be nine miles long and feature all of his lifelong enemies: Obama, Jeff Bezos, Graydon Carter, Hillary Clinton, the McDonald’s lady who got his order wrong that one time, half his family, Harley AND Davidson, Michael Cohen, Robert Pattinson, Phoebe Cates for shooting for him down that one time, and on and on. Eight people will be invited to the funeral, half of them will ghost on it, and the front row at the National Cathedral will look like a gallery of obscure Simpsons characters.

In all seriousness though, the funeral will be a completely rote affair featuring dozens of attendees inside pretending to be sad and 50,000 Nazis outside the church who actually are. And the media will have to cover it as if it’s a somber occasion and Jake Tapper will seriously intone, “Say what you will about the man…” while the rest of us dance in the fucking streets. For the past three years, Trump’s ascent has basically acted as one, long, lit fuse. And he’s basically made it so that, when he dies, the bomb goes off. That funeral will probably trigger full-scale rioting across the country. His classiest gesture yet.

Email of the week!

Scott:

I recently had nearly a dozen assorted leftover sushi roll pieces that had been sitting in the fridge for 3+ days. Palatability was definitely questionable at that point. Then came a stroke of culinary genius: I mashed then all up on a plate with a fork, splashed the resulting mound with soy sauce, and zapped it in the microwave. The result was outstanding, as bbq eel, salmon, spicy tuna and hamachi sizzled alongside seaweed, rice, and exploding hot roe, each bite a unique mix of spicy, savory, salty and sweet. Have others tried this? If not, is it brilliance or lunacy?

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That’s probably how poke was invented. Also, you now only have eight days to live.