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

Your letters:

Brian:

Rank the various final rounds of the major game shows: Final Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune’s Bonus Round, TPIR’s Showcase Showdown, Family Feud’s Fast Money, etc. We need an entire network dedicated to final rounds.

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Nothing pleases me more than when I tune into Jeopardy or Wheel right as the final round is beginning, knowing I’ve skipped over all the tedious regular-season puzzles and am getting right to the BIG MONEY action. One of the reasons that Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? was such a huge deal a long time ago was because they figured out a way to make the entire show feel like one big final round of another game show. I was hooked just like everyone else, and I would definitely watch an all-final round cable channel… for at least three minutes. Lemme try to rank them for you now.

  1. Double Dare obstacle course. A couple of bratty kids forced to root around a giant nose looking for flags in fake snot, only to have the clock run out before they can get the miniature car? There’s your winner.
  2. Jeopardy, but only when I know the answer to the question. Every time the final category is revealed to be OPERA, my eyes roll into the back of my head.
  3. Tic-Tac-Dough. Remember the dragon? Fuck that dragon. That goddamn dragon gave me a heart attack every time I saw it. My kids could watch Friday the 13th and have zero nightmares of any kind. Meanwhile, an 8-bit dragon ruined my shit when I was 9. I don’t get it.
  4. The Price Is Right. The insidious thing about The Price Is Right is that it’s just one gigantic ad for Listerine and cars, and yet I will absolutely watch the Showcase Showdown just to ooh and ahh at all the useless crap on display. OMG A CAMPER! THAT SHOWCASE MUST BE WORTH A MILLION BUCKS! I also liked it when the bulk of a Showcase package was deliberately terrible just to get you jazzed about a Mercury at the very end. “You get half a dinette set, a copy of Pictionary, some used napkins… AND A NEW CAR!!!! [big horn music goes nuts]”
  5. Family Feud. There’s always one family member who blows it for the rest of the family, and the best part is when they all try to console the family dope for costing them money even though you KNOW they’re pissed.
  6. Remote Control. This was the one where you had to identify nine videos in 30 seconds, and they always tossed in an obscure video from, like, the Hoodoo Gurus to stop you cold. Diabolical.
  7. The $100,000 Pyramid. FUN FACT: No one ever won the hundred grand on this show. By the time they got to the penultimate level of the pyramid, it was all categories like THINGS AN 18th CENTURY FRENCH MONK MIGHT SAY ON ASCENSION DAY.
  8. Name That Tune. You had to guess seven songs in 30 seconds, and every song was some big band joint that predated both World Wars. It was fucking impossible.
  9. Hollywood Squares. This was the final round where you had to pick a car you wanted from the next stage and then you picked a key (I bet John Davidson was more than used to presiding over key party-type events), and then your favorite celeb from the Squares, usually Jm J. Bullock, sat with you as you attempted to gun the engine with the selected key. It had NOTHING to do with the game itself but that didn’t matter.
  10. Being hit by an oncoming speedboat
  11. Wheel Of Fortune. They give you all the easy letters because the puzzle never has them, and then you’ve got some poor gym teacher from fucking flyover country trying to guess a scrabble word with only C, H, M, and O in their pocket. It’s impossible and stupid. Another thing that angers me about the final Wheel round is that it happens, like, 20 minutes into the broadcast. They manage to stretch promotional considerations for another 10 minutes somehow. Knowing how little Pat Sajak actually has to work, I find this enraging. Can you really not fill the entire half-hour with gaming?

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Tony:

Which bar is better, airport bar or hotel bar?

Oh, the hotel bar. No question about it, as far as I’m concerned. I’m one of those people who likes to drink after the angst has passed, instead of drinking as a way to soothe that angst. Does that make sense? I can’t really enjoy myself in an airport bar, waiting for some fucking flight to start boarding, worrying about overhead bin space, sitting with 500 other unhappy people milling in and out with rollerboards and nowhere to put them (for real, there’s nowhere good to put a fucking suitcase in an airport restaurant; sometimes I put it in the seat across from me and I look like a crazy person who is legally married to his luggage). There’s too much uncertainty swirling around for me to get really drunk and comfortable. I wanna get where I’m going, and THEN I can finally unwind with a beer or eight.

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I remember I was in Chicago once and my connecting flight had been cancelled. I was stuck there for the night and I had to wait forever at the customer service desk to get my hotel accommodations, while all the first-class passengers automatically got to cut the line (which made me want to kill them all and kickstart a revolution). Finally, I get the hotel voucher, I schlep out of O’Hare, I wait for a shuttle bus that seems to never arrive, I get to the hotel and wait another eternity to check in with everyone else who got stranded, and then I FINALLY get to the hotel bar. They gave me two free drink vouchers and I’d never been so happy. I was ELATED. All the badness washed away as I sucked down a shitty beer and stared at an LCD TV showing SportsCenter on mute. It was the purest joy I’ve ever known. I have a big boner for hotel bars and lobbies. They make me feel like a man of the world even though I spend most of my time playing iPhone games in a recliner at home. These are anodyne spaces littered with tourists and douchebags and yet I am drawn to them, perhaps because I personify both of those groups so effectively.

Every airport bar is fairly depressing. It’s a loose mix of white trash, alkies, stone-silent businessmen, and extremely loud people who seemingly LIVE to drink Bloody Marys at 10:30am in the Logan terminal. I feel very desperate and alone in an airport bar. If I were some horny 20-year-old going to Vegas with all my CRAZY BUDDIES, it would be a different story, but I’m 41 now and spontaneous fun is not my thing. I prefer to grind my teeth throughout the duration of the travel experience, then get to the hotel bar and feel like a fucking millionaire.

Eric:

How do you rank every draft slot in a fantasy football draft? Let’s say it’s a 10-team league with a snake draft format. I’m the third overall pick in an upcoming draft and I’m not sure how many slots are better. I get a cream-of-the-crop talent, the first and second picks make my decision easier to make, and I don’t have to wait for 18 picks for it to come back around to me.

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Let’s do this.

  1. 5
  2. 4
  3. 3
  4. 6
  5. 7
  6. 8
  7. 2
  8. 1
  9. 9
  10. 10

I hate being at the ass end of a snake draft, making two picks in a tight window and then staring at the Draft Room ticker and realizing my turn won’t come again for another nine hours. By the time I get to make another pick, the only players left to draft will be kickers and Frank Gore. It’s the worst. I’d rather sit in the middle of the draft, pluck off players at set intervals, and marvel at my roster depth before going 2-12. If I’m at the front of the draft, I’m gonna be forced to take some back No. 1 and they will either immediately tank or get hurt, and that will fill me with a white-hot rage that can be seen from adjacent solar systems.

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By the way, I have yet to fully divest myself of normal fantasy football in favor of DFS, but I’m close. I’m so close, I can taste it. I was only in one regular league last fall and you never know if that league will go belly up. After that, I am FREE. You hear me? Never again will I be shackled with Kelvin Benjamin for four miserable months. Soon it’ll be nothing but fuck-and-run fantasy gaming for me and I’ll be a happier man for it.

Eric:

The Queen turned 92 on April 21st. In those 92 years, she has to have given at least one blowjob, right? Let’s put the over/under at 0.5. Where is your money going? I got the over.

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She’s definitely blown Prince Philip at least once, and then she was probably like, “Oh, that was simply dreadful. A rubbish cock, it was!” Probably had to wash her mouth out with Earl Grey tea when it was all over.

Like the President, I think the elderly royals are so fucked in the head that facets of everyday living—sex included—scare and confuse them. I cannot even imagine what spending decades and decades as cosseted inbred royal idiot does to the human brain. These people are all deranged. Queen Elizabeth forbids garlic from Buckingham Palace. The rest of her family isn’t allowed to eat in public view. So god only knows what the official royal policy is when it comes to oral copulation. Meghan Markle probably got a 58-page handbook outlining proper blowjob procedures. The Queen probably has a Corgi watch. That family should have all their money stolen, and then given directly to me.

Taylor:

My wife and I are expecting our first child in August. Through the course of getting ready for the baby’s arrival I have learned about the racket that are strollers, car-seats, and travel systems. Not only does a decent, safe, version of each of these items cost at least $500, the sheer number of brands, and combinations of compatible strollers, car seats, adapters, converters, etc. has already confused and frustrated me to the point of questioning my own sanity. Has it always been this way? How does BIG STROLLER get away with this? Will every aspect of being a new Dad be this confounding and frustrating?

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Oh yeah it’s a whole racket and it’s only getting worse. When we had our first kid 12 years ago, we had to go to the Buy Buy Baby and stock up on all that nonsense. I remember passing by the Bugaboo section and gasping at the price tag, but now ALL strollers cost roughly that much. BIG STROLLER has completely phased out the midmarket-priced strollers, and they won’t rest until you’ve broken down and taken out a home equity loan on a double-wide MacClaren jogger with heated seats and a front-mounted cannon to blast unsuspecting pedestrians out of your way.

Corporations can get away with shit like this because they know that safety is the No. 1 issue and they know that every parent lives in constant fear of being judged for not keeping their children safe enough. So yeah, you can still buy some piece of shit Graco for $150 for your new baby, but are you REALLY doing enough for her? Doesn’t she deserve the very BEST? That’s how they start in on you. Then they huddle up with government and lobby for new safety standards and rig their own safety ratings and suddenly you are legally obligated to drive your baby around in a fucking Brinks truck. Modern parents have to shelter their children more for the sake of a company’s lawyers than for the child itself.

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So much has changed even since I became a new parent not that long ago. We used to have the baby sleep on a wedge pillow to prevent reflux, and now those are basically deemed lethal. We had a crib with a drop down gate and those are ALSO now deemed as hazardous as tossing your baby into a vat of carbonic acid. We carefully fed our daughter spoonfuls of mushy rice cereal for MONTHS, and now doctors are starting kids on solid food much, much sooner. If you’re a parent long enough, there comes a time when you realize THESE FUCKERS ARE MAKING IT UP AS THEY GO ALONG!!!! And then you can finally get down to raising your kids the way you think is best.

But get them vaccinated, please.

Joey:

How do you think Trump proposed to each of his wives?

He proposed to Melania during the Met Gala, which is the most Trump way of proposing because it involved him making a scene in front of a bunch of people who can’t stand him. He also apparently lied about getting a million-dollar discount on the ring, which again is very on-brand. Also, I doubt any of his proposals were very surprising or romantic. Trump is a bull, so he’s the kind of guy who sees a pretty lady and then is like, DURRRRR I’M GONNA MAKE YOU MAH WIFE DURRRRR and then he just screams it at the lady 900 times a day until, after a completely loveless courtship, there’s something that is technically a proposal but feels nothing at all like one. Like, he’s definitely held out an engagement ring and arched his eyebrow and said, “Do we have a deal, baby?”

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HALFTIME!

Chris:

Can you do a ranking of activities that you can’t do without a drink in your hand. I got the coals started on my grill tonight, and then ran out for a 6-pack because I realized I can’t grill without a beer. Similarly: bowling, pool, and recovering from a workout.

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Like you, I also feel naked without a cold can of piss beer when I fire the flames up. If I’m grilling sober, I’m not really getting the full Grill Dad experience, and it wounds my soul. Here are some other activities I will not do unless I have my hand glued to a Natty Boh:

  • Attending any live game or concert. The most obvious answer. How long can you go at, like, a baseball game without a beer in your hand? After I finish mine, I can go roughly two minutes before I frantically begin scouring the aisles for the beer guy, silently cursing the cotton candy vendor who walks by 50 times instead. This is strictly because I treasure the atmospheric qualities of drinking at a baseball game, and definitely not because I’m a hopeless alcoholic!
  • Cornhole! FUN FACT: I have never played an actual regulation game of cornhole. My experience with cornhole consists of me seeing a cornhole set, walking over with a drink in my hand, launching a few bags 10 yards past the hole, and then walking away. It’s the perfect amount of cornhole for my needs.
  • Miniature golf. You might think being lubed up on rum would stop daddy from raging when he misses the log tunnel five times straight. You would be wrong. DAD SMASH.
  • Making chili. I like to think I’m an enlightened fellow but honestly, any time I participate in the making of any MAN FOOD, I feel the conditioned need to obey my American brewmaster overlords and drink on the job, or else BRO THEY’LL TAKE MY MAN CARD BRO.
  • Playing catch. I will play catch with my son while holding a beer, and then I will fumble the ball and he’ll yell at me to put the beer down, and then I’ll put it down for roughly six seconds before picking it right back up. I’m sure his therapist will note this.
  • Showering outdoors. You know my stance on shower beers. They are the best thing about America.

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Ben:

My wife recently informed me that I have a habit of serving the family cold food. I’ll openly admit that part of the problem is me. I’m a terrible multi-tasker, so I have a hard time finishing three different dishes at the same time. Any suggestions to fix either issue?

The easiest way to ensure everyone’s dinner is piping hot is to make a one-dish meal. That means soups, stews, braises, lasagna, GUMBO, etc etc. If you’re making a tradition meat-starch-veggie meal, you’ve got at least two things you need to serve hot, and those two things usually cool down very fast. It’s hard to coordinate all that food AND get your family seated at the table right when that food is at peak warmth. I have absolutely made a nice hot meal and then yelled at the kids because they were too busy dicking around to come eat when it’s ready. Then the pasta turns to rubber and they piss and moan about it being too cold and I want to throw them in a lake. IT’S NOT MY FAULT YOU WERE BUSY TRYING TO RIDE THE DOG, YOU LITTLE BASTARDS.

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But that’s what I get for not making tuna casserole. It’s stupid to cook ambitious food when you’re feeding it to some 7-year-old. From now on, I’m only making chili in the winter and serving ice-cold italian subs in the summer. We’ll die of coronary heart disease but at least everything will be the right temperature.

Clay:

Which take is hotter? “Thing that is bad is Actually Good” or “Thing that is good is Actually Bad”?

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Oh, the former. People are much more passionate about stuff they hate than stuff they like, so when some contrarian looks up from his reading glasses and is like, “Actually, Limp Bizkit was good,” or “Actually, the prequels are the best Star Wars movies,” that is both riskier and more obnoxious because you’re inviting ridicule in addition to the standard helping of internet scorn. This is why you don’t see me offering my heartfelt opinion that “Right Here Waiting” by Richard Marx is a genuinely tender and beautiful song. I’ve got a reputation to uphold, dammit.

On a broader scale, I think the hotness of takes is mostly dependent on the TONE of the take, and less on the actual subject matter. Like, you’ll find absolutely nuclear takes in the comments section of any given YouTube post. But what makes a take special is when the critic responsible for it acts like he’s doing you a fucking favor by dishing it out. Like, when you’re self-absorbed to the point where you think your “Actually, Nazis are great” take is some grand epiphany you’ve gifted to the masses, that’s when Jordan Peterson takes you under his wing. You’ve got a future in this biz, you smarmy little shit!

Nick:

What are the odds that someone was mid-shit on an airplane when it crashed? I just flew to Europe and back and noticed that there was probably someone in at least one of the bathrooms nearly every minute of the flight (roughly 250 passengers, 6+ bathrooms). So I would wager that there was definitely someone IN a bathroom if a plane crashed.

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Are you talking about pushing one out right at the moment of impact? Because I’m sure that’s happened, but it’s gotta be pretty rare. For a sudden impact, you’d have to be flying low to the ground but also free to use the toilet, and that seems unlikely. I have never been in a plane crash (fingers crossed!), but I assume there’s a dreadful, noticeable period where you realize you’re going down, yes? That horrible moment when the engines fail and all you hear is the wind whistling around the fuselage before the oxygen masks drop down and you go into a tailspin? I’d feel cheated if I didn’t get that. That moment of horrifying anticipation is probably enough time to keep you from dying in the shitter.

So I think if a crash is imminent and the pilot has instructed everyone to assume the position, adrenaline takes over and you STOP evacuating your bowels. No one wants to die on the can, much less an airplane can. So I would go right into survival mode and stand up with half a log sticking out of my ass. Then I return to my seat and try to fire off a saucy tweet before bursting into flames. Tell the world I died like a MAN.

Jules:

Would you rather get rid of snack foods or snacking? Either you can eat whenever you want, but no “snack foods” like chips or peanuts or whatever, or you can eat any food under the sun but only during meals. I think I personally would say snack foods, because I enjoy the freedom of eating whenever, and I could always just snack on pizza or pasta or some regular food. But, the prospect of never eating popcorn or BBQ chips or even Cheez-Its again makes me pretty sad. What do you think?

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Snacking is incredibly bad for you, and I have already endeavored to banish it from my own life. Then pool season comes around and the snack bar has those little dollar bags of Cheetos that are just the right size and I fall off the wagon all over again. It’s awful. I’ve had so many good runs of Not Snacking fall apart at the sight of a tub of cheese popcorn, or a heaping bowl of cocoa almonds. It’s not fair. At this point, my only hope for staying on the straight and narrow is for the government to institute some kind of martial snack law. Only mealtime eating for everyone. Judging by the very wide men running this country, that’s not happening anytime soon. Papa John and all the Yum! brands c-suite executives will be the last free people in America when all is said and done.

By the way, it’s a genuine thrill to have snack foods as a side dish to go with an actual meal. Like when you get chips with your hot dog, all on one plate? That’s just great living. I’ll take chips as a side dish over a fucking cup of coleslaw any day. I have also had cheese and crackers as a full meal, and it’s deeply satisfying in ways normal meals are not.

Email of the week!

Jamison:

When I was a kid, my favorite restaurant to go to was one of those Japanese teppanyaki/hibachi places where they cook everything right in front of you and set the onion volcano on fire and flip shrimp at you. Fun for kids, and this one was more upscale than Benihana so my parents liked it too. And while this place had a kids menu, they basically gave everyone the same amount of food, so every time we went I’d leave the place with my stomach essentially ready to burst.

On one summer evening when I was somewhere around 10 years old, we went to the restaurant, left stuffed, and decided to head to a around a nearby mall to “walk it off.” Halfway to the mall, which I knew for a fact had some of the nicer bathrooms around, I announce that I have to shit. Not in a few minutes; now. I’m sweating, squirming, sucking wind from the open window. My dad emergency-stops at a Miltons, which is a local Boston-area suit chain. (The location in question no longer exists.)

We run inside, and my dad asks the employees if I - a sweating, panting, chubby 10-year-old - can use their bathroom. They say no, it’s for paying customers only. My dad starts running around looking for a pair of socks or a cheap tie to buy while I sprint outside to see if there’s another nearby store. The minute I feel the fresh air outside, my brain starts screaming at me that it’s now or never. I spot some bushes on the side of the store, drop trou, and proceed to paint an entire flowerbed with the most noxious and gloppy stream of diarrhea I’ve ever expelled to this very day (I’m 25 now). And it just won’t stop; every time I think it has to be ending soon, my body finds a way to expel more of my insides. I’m convinced I lost at least a dozen pounds and a pant size or two on this entire endeavor.

I should also note that I’m not an experienced outdoor shitter. I dropped out of Cub Scouts before any of the outdoor training started. Needless to say, it was everywhere. All over me, my clothes, and the side of the store.

I staggered back towards the Milton’s entrance where my dad was standing. They’d given him one of those black plastic suit jacket bags, which he tore holes into so I could wear as pants for the silent drive home.

I have no lessons for you or your readership other than the next time you need to buy a suit, for the love of all that isn’t shit-covered, shop Men’s Wearhouse.