Careful — It’s Catching

You may be fond of them, but me, I don’t like assholes.  Not at all.  They scare me sometimes, because truthfully I’m pretty sure it’s a disease; they can’t help themselves.  I call it “assholism.”  And it appears to be contagious.  Worse, it seems to be striking in the most affluent of regions here in Northern Virginia.

There are some obvious symptoms.

Cigars.  I mean, look who smokes the disgusting things:

Yes, Our Fine Former Majority Leader with an ILLEGAL Cuban

And of course, our favorite conservative:

Rush is an asshole on or off the radio

Yes, anyone guilty of intentionally  lighting up one of these babies has assholism.  They stink.  And you can’t tell me that the folks who smoke them don’t know that.  They don’t care if you don’t like it.  If it makes you and the rest of the folks in the room want to puke, well, that’s your problem.

Them?  They’re just being assholes ill.  They need treatment.  An exploding cigar would be my prescription.  Or a rocket ship to another planet.  One way.

Hummers.  Yup, Hum-Vees.  Another symptom.  Especially if the owner has a cutesy license plate that says “Just HumN” or “HUMTHIS” or has an American Flag decal on the back.  Yup.  Assholism.

[A few years ago the JD Power survey of car owners identified that Hummer owners are not just assholes, but that they are idiots, too.  The biggest complaint of Hummer owners?  The Poor Gas Mileage.  Um, sir?  You bought a TANK.]

But today, in the Washington Post, I read about a family with the worst case of assholism I have ever heard of.  Yes, it’s true.  You can read about it here.  Or you can just trust me to tell you what symptoms they’re showing.  It’s dreadful. Truly frightening.  People will be rushing from the movie theaters en masse when they learn about it.

Because the folks in this story suffer from that awful combination syndrome of assholism AND   “Environmental I-don’t-get-it-ism.”

Because this family wiped out 5 acres of trees across the street from a U.S. National Park to build a 25,424-square-foot mansion modeled on the Palace of Versailles.  They will call it  The Chateau De Lumiere.  

Photo Credit: The Washington Post

I really hope they can find a cure for assholism soon.  Before someone starts building pyramids.

 

 

 

 

91 Comments

Filed under Humor

91 responses to “Careful — It’s Catching

  1. Rebel Ed

    Sorry for the error; it should read “While,” not “Whild.”

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  2. Rebel Ed

    Whild I agree that Rush Hudson Limbaugh III is an ass, Rush is a band from Toronto, Ontario (C-eh-N-eh-D, eh?) Unlike the verbal self-pleasuring which Limbaugh spews for a huge profit to a zombified audience who will do his bidding, Rush actually has something to say. Whatever your opinion about Mr. Limbaugh, please remember: Rush is a band.

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    • Ed, you seem to have stumbled into the Way Back Machine. This is an ancient post (and one with which I insulted several people. Apparently I need to add you and the Rush band from Toronto to the list.

      How unfortunate that they share the same name though. Seriously. I will need to look them up.

      I’m listening to them now. I understand your frustration — they’re good. Are you a member? A fan? Their avenging angel?

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  3. Assholism needs to be erradicated. Not a great example to the younger generation. They can be amusing sometimes but pretty much annoying for most of the time. Thanks for this informative post with a dose of fun humor…

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  4. I guess I’m glad that it doesn’t only exist in my neck of the woods. At least partially. I’d love to be able to leave assholism behind!

    And I think I will wait to set the charges until they build the house! Construction hasn’t started last time I was there. But I think the neighbors will beat me to it.

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  5. GOF

    Assholism is a global plague. It can only be cured by intelligent blogging and a goodly amount of appropriately- placed dynamite.

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  6. What? (gasp) You don’t like assholes? I am shocked at this, Elyse. Flabbergasted even.
    This reminds me of that old Denis Leary song, “I’m An Asshole” Classic stuff.

    There is this woman, probably all of 20 years old, she’s about 5 feet tall and perky and cute. And every single afternoon she blows into the school parking lot in her black Hummer, narrowly running over me and/or other kids. I say the same thing every time I see her coming, “GOD! There comes that freaking goddamn Hummer! Everyone run for your lives!” I’m not saying that everyone who drives one is like her, I’m just giving you the facts here. She acts like because she drives a tank, she has the right of way, that’s all. Hummers do attract the assholey types that’s all, not that everyone who drives one is an asshole.

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    • Clearly, everyone who drives a Hummer is not an asshole. Shannon is the exception there. Nor is everyone who occasionally smokes a cigar an asshole, either. Valentine proves that.
      There are always exceptions to every rule, there are folks who have some symptoms of a disease that don’t actually have the disease. I can somehow manage to not offend half of my readers.

      But there are no exceptions for folks who build 25,000 ft. mansions modeled after Versailles. Nope. I cannot flip that far.

      For anyone who has not seen/heard it, here is the video Darla mentions. It is hilarious ….Dennis Leary’s song, I’m an asshole: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTVpxxzb2Dc

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      • Aw, thank you so much for the vindication! But to be sure, I’m not an asshole JUST because I drive a Hummer. I’m an asshole for many, many other reasons.

        Like, just yesterday, I had to park across the lot and brave crossing with my four rambunctious children because some nice young man took up the only two spaces with his two-seater Mercedes directly in front of the store. After I held the door open for him and it was obvious it was his car, I said loudly to my kids coming in through the door, “Wow, kids! Want to know what dick looks like? There’s one right there! Have a long look.” The manager of the store was appalled by my language.

        The asshole in me comes out like diarrhea sometimes. I just can’t help it.

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  7. Possibly the best opening line ever. Also, this post reminds me of one of my favorite Hummer jokes:
    A-I just bought a Hummer
    B-Really? Did you know that for less money than it costs to buy a Hummer you could have rented a billboard in Times Square that says, “Hey everybody, I’m an asshole!”

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  8. I don’t know…since a pyramid is really a tomb, maybe that’s a fitting house for someone with this affliction.

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    • If only we could put the builders of this house (well, I really mean the folks who are paying for it to be built) inside of it, shrink it and send it into orbit. That would work for me. Then we can plant some trees!

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  9. An economist weighing in here. This is conspicuous consumption. Veblen wrote about it over a 100 years ago. Personally, to me it means the marginal tax rates on excessively expensive things are too low. Finally, in the really weird category, University of Pennsylvania Econ Professor Andy Postlewait wrote that young people wear fancy $5,000+ Rolex watches, fancy BMWs, expensive fancy logo shirts, as a “signalling” device to the opposite sex, as way to keep class distinctions known and going forward. Pretty amazing to think that this actually has some meaningful or meaningless basis (based on your perspective).

    Good post and comments here. For me cell phone talking drivers really bug me.

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  10. Hi,
    Exploding cigars, I love it. 😀

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  11. Yuck! All of it. Yuck! What can we do about this, Elyse? I’m scared I’m going to catch it. Wait, right now I suddenly want to light all my money on fire and throw it onto the back of a small doe-eyed forest creature. It may be too late for me.

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    • What we can do is all base our behaviors on mine. What I think is assholic IS assholic. My own personal assholic tendencies are fine to pursue.

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  12. “Hi. I’m Shannon. And I own a Hummer.” *reluctant light applause*

    Oh my. I’m too green for words. I eat from my yard. My thermostat is set to 85 in the summer. I never run heat. I volunteer in public schools. I don’t water the grass. I drive 3 days per week. I put out no trash and I almost never use my oven. How could I possibly own a Hummer?

    Here’s the short list. I have four kids, need a toilet-on-the-go and there quite simply isn’t a more comfy ride for 16-hr road trips. (I don’t know if you’ve checked, but all towing SUV’s get shitty mileage.) I get pleasure from commuters shooting me the bird as I lock into 4WD and climb concrete barriers to bail off of the freeway as traffic locks up for hours near the Houston area. (Yeah, take that, you gas-burning, 0 mph, idling vehicles.) At best, it gets 16 mpg (believe me, I’ve tried), which is still 1 mph better than than the ’91 F-150 that I drove the wheels off of before I sold it in ’11. It has saved me 10 times over in air fare and crappy van rentals. Hands down, there is no other vehicle I entrust to safely carry my whole family from one point to another doing 80 mph aside 18-wheelers. Especially the Prius (that’s a rolling coffin on Texas highways).

    I bought it slightly used, for way less than other brand-new SUV’s (there’s not many who carry 7-8 passengers), and in great condition before Hummer tanked (wow, no pun there, really). It is equipped with OnStar, which I’ve used only twice as a “good samaritan” to report witnessing nasty accident and to report a wildfire that had just started last summer. Other than that, the $20/mo I spend for it is pretty much wasted.

    There. Got that off my chest. I tried, really tried, to keep it short. I prefer “survival and expediency” to “assholism,” thank you.

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    • …oh, and like Angie, I believe that Rush needs to be routinely kicked in the balls. Just sayin.’ But if offered a cigar and a cigarette, I’d choose the cigar every time. Just way better for tobacco for the palette.

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      • Hi Shannon,
        Oh dear, I’m two for three with you. I need to reform. And write my mea culpa post. Soon. Very soon.

        Glad you don’t hate me, although you probably think I am an asshole….

        This comment was lurking in the “must approve” pending file and I didn’t see it until just now. I don’t know why — but you are certainly approved. Even when you disagree or help to prove me to be the jerk in the room ….

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        • LOL I completely forgot about my after-comment! Don’t feel too bad…I missed one for nearly a month. I’ve learned to check my Dashboard every-so-often to make sure I don’t do that again. No, Elyse, consider us square. 🙂

          About H2’s, I’m completely relate with you and others’ impression on H2 drivers. In Texas, H2’s are driven — not ridden. That is, they’re predominately single passenger vehicles. Put a few hundred in a 10 mph morning commute from the burbs into Houston (that 1.5 hrs), THAT is true idiocy.

          To be fair, I have considered removing the dangling bull testicles and slapping a “Hyper-miler” and “Too Many Kids on Board” bumper stickers on the back instead. Would that help?

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    • OK. OK. I give up. You get an exemption, too. Perhaps I need to give up my assholic tendency to comment on what I think equals assholic tendencies. Because, naturally, I always step in something.

      Or maybe it is a regional thing. Or maybe it is a DC-area thing!

      Glad you got it off your chest. I think my next post will, by necessity, be how I do always stick my foot in it when I talk about this. I will need to shore up my courage, first, though!

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      • Hilarious! I feel for you Elyse, you know this is a carbon copy of a day in my life, don’t you? I thought Shannons post was pretty awesome and entirely convincing!

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      • No offence taken, really. Everyone’s got his “vice,” that one is certainly mine; I get a lot of flack for it, given my otherwise conservation nature. I did enjoy the post — I certainly hope you didn’t believe otherwise!

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  13. Oh darn, you mean you oppose my pyramid? I’m thinking of putting it next to the Sequoias. They’ve been waiting for me to take in their view. But I’ll have to stop the traffic of others wanting to see them. After all, it’s my pyramid and we wouldn’t want my view disrupted by tourists! LOL.

    Isn’t that the attitude? Hang in there. Assholism is going out of fashion.

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    • Since it is you wanting to build the pyramid, Renee, I think it’s ok. You’ll let me in, won’t you. I’ll clean the gold.

      I hope you’re right that this illness is going out of style. Maybe it’s like a mullet.

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  14. Your play on words was brilliant, ‘assholism’ will be my new go-to word from now on! That story was awful, isn’t is trange that its often the wealthiest and/or those with the most power that are so ignorant? Sad.

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    • Darn, you mean it’s in OZ too? I hoped that with the prevailing winds you, Karyn, would be spared. Or perhaps some spores slipped in with your goods when you moved back and spread.

      Yes, what a terrible story. It really is right across the street from National Parkland — Heavily FORESTED parkland. Oy.

      Glad you see you back here so often! I missed you.

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      • I’m a little delayed in my blog reading, but I do get there – eventually! Sadly, this place is full of them. I’ve heard they are exporting from the US… 😉

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        • I am NOT responsible — I didn’t send them to you (or to Canada, either). I’m thinking that maybe we should confine the local ones to Le Chateau De Lumiere. God knows there’s room for a whole peck of them!

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  15. Some people just never learn! There are examples all over the place. We have them here in Canada, too!!! – Maureen

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    • Once I wrote that we in the U.S. should ship all of our stupid people to Manitoba. So I want to state, here, now, for the record, that I DID NOT ship any assholes to Manitoba or any other Canadian province. They made it there themselves. Probably in Hummers.
      Thanks OG!

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  16. My friends have a hummer and they are very nice people, but the hummer is an asshole. The rear doors swing open so wide that I broke my own nose one very dark night. That hummer is a mean asshole and I haven’t been near it since!

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    • Hmmm. I never thought that it might work the other way — the asshole car chooses a nice person and then mutilates their friends. Sounds like a Hollywood Horror Hootenanny. Perhaps Gov. Ahnold should star.

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  17. You forgot the typical BMW driver asshole – or maybe your experience has been different than mine. But BMWs are usually the ridiculously overpriced vehicle choice of 30 year old business executives who are back stabbing and stomping on the fingers of anyone in their way, as they fight their way up the corporate ladder. Since they are only halfway to the top and must answer to the even bigger assholes above them, they are on a constant mission to prove just how much potential they have, to become a much bigger asshole too – at work and everywhere else as well.

    Through the years of my driving experience, I have had BMW drivers lay on the horn behind me – for the crime of stopping at a crosswalk so a young mother and her small child can cross safely.

    Out on the highway in the left lane, even if I’m driving 80 mph, they will fly up behind me and tailgate two inches behind my rear bumper, then flash their high beams in the universal BMW driver signal that shouts “get the f*ck out of MY way!” If I don’t change lanes, they will continue to ride my tail suicidally close and oblivious to the fact that people could die if I suddenly need to use my brakes.

    I’ve had them come within two inches of t-boning my car in parking garages because they try to fly into a parking space ahead of me. And after they almost cause a serious accident, they call ME an asshole, while thrusting up their middle finger. Such is the personality type of the Big.Money.Wannabe. while driving a car for which BMW should stand for Break My Windows.

    But the all time ultimate BMW asshole in my experience, was the guy in a parking garage in Boston, who raced into the space next to ours – just as my wife’s mother got out, and he just missed hitting her. Did he apologize? Of course not. Instead he swore at her – and then he called ME an asshole, when I called his driving and his very being a menace to society.

    It took me all the restraint that I could summon up from every fiber in my being – to not launch a roundhouse right and smash my fist hard into his arrogant asshole nose.

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    • Chris, did I hit a nerve???!!!!

      I was once a (non-assholic) BMW driver. I promise that wasn’t me on the horn or in the parking lot! There are SO many BMWs around here that you get some nice ones along with a lot of assholes. Of course, with the traffic around here, 70% of all psychosis is auto-related.

      (I had my B’mer WAY before the exchange rate made them so expensive.) Although it was incredibly fun to drive, the electronics in the thing were awful and had constant problems. The windows would just spontaneously go down — I’d come back to the parking lot and find it with them down. I certainly won’t be driving another!

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      • Well, yeah, I guess I was having some rather intense flashbacks there, wasn’t I? Lol – But sure nothing to do with you, Elyse. Even if you do have a Bimi past, I’m sure that you’ve never been even remotely close to acting like the drivers that I described, who were ALL male, btw.

        If 70% of all psychosis in your area is auto-related, I’m sure that we rival or exceed that percentage here in the greater Boston Area, and I know that our driving assholes act out in all makes and models.

        But it has been my experience that the very worst of the worst driving assholes around here, are the mid level management 30-40 yr old male bus execs driving around in Bastard.Moving.Wheels.

        A long time ago, I drove an Audi and it was also really fun to drive, but the electronics also sucked. So much for German engineering, huh? And now you’re gonna tell me you’re German, right? Lol! 🙂

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        • 1/4 German. But the other part of me is Irish so (1) I expect bad things to happen and (2) I know how to laugh when they do! Usually at myself.

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          • Now that sounds like a downright sensible and healthy combination! I am the product of the union between a very Irish mother and a very British father. No wonder I’ve felt such a great sense of inner conflict all my life! I’m at WAR with myself. But I’ve also been told that I have a good sense of humor – which is a good thing, cause it helps to moderate my occasionally intense temper.

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  18. You’ve got spunk. I love spunk! I have found that many people (sadly mostly males) with an assholism affliction wear an ascot at their neck or tie a sweater around their shoulders. And when genetically analyzed, they carry a jerk-gene that surfaces from time to time, for many unsuspecting generations.

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  19. Hmmm…weird. A lot of women I know like the smell of cigars. Personally, I find all forms of smoking to be distasteful.

    Hey, at least I wasn’t names as one of the assholes! Woohoo!

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    • Ewwww. Not me. Yuck. I’m with you on smoking — I hate it. And smoke of any kind zeroes in on me.

      I intentionally did not include folks who disagree with me on my list of symptoms of assholism. I’d lose ALL my friends (and readers)!

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  20. And you forgot Mitt. You know, for caging the dog on the hood of his car for that vacation and all…Or maybe it was stupitis. Anyway, yes, Rush is the leader of the pact. There’s a certain arrogance that comes with smoking a cigar. As for Hummer drivers, I try to stay away from them because I can’t see through the window tint. Thanks for letting me know they’re idiots.

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    • I didn’t forget Mitt, Totsy. But I could never do that story justice — that is for Gail Collins of the NY Times; she is the official “Seamus the Irish Setter Storyteller.” She is brilliant!

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  21. So, they saw Versailles and didn’t think “Wow, what a garish display of gluttony and wealth. No wonder the people rose up against them,” they thought, “Ooooh, nice. I want one. Everyone will respect me.”

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  22. I’m with you. *ssholes suck *ss.

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  23. Don’t send your assholes where you send your stupid people – we have enough of our own, thankyouverymuch! 😉

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  24. Oh Elyse I might have a small bit of Asshole in me…it was passed down to me from my grandfather, I admit it, I own it but yet and still…..I will have to fall on my sword on this one.

    There is nothing I love more than sitting on outside patio with a Romeo y Juliet and a glass of Drambuie after a really superb meal. This is a treat I only get to enjoy on rare occasions (I don’t drink often due to epilepsy meds) but when planned for it is a wonderful treat.

    As for the rest, yes it is indeed getting worse and worse. The problem? Society worships those who ‘have’ and spits on those who don’t.

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    • Perhaps you can be the exception that proves the rule? (Did I squirm out of this one well enough? Or must I join the ranks of the assholes. Sigh.)

      Personally, I don’t mind if you indulge on rare occasions. After all, you are in Texas and I am in Virginia. And even my nose isn’t that sensitive!

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      • We all have one or two ‘corrupt’ dirty little secrets! At least I take mine outside, I don’t want to indulge and blow in your face.

        I get the problem though and I get the issue.

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        • I have several assholic tendencies. Top on the list (in my husband’s eyes) is my tendency to put my foot in my mouth, particularly when I’m grousing. 🙂

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  25. See here’s the upside. If there’s no trees by this “palace” then there’s nothing to produce oxygen, and from what I remember, people need oxygen…even assholes.

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    • But so many of them have their heads up their butts, where I am quite sure there is no oxygen only noxious fumes, I think that perhaps assholes require a lower level of oxygen to subsist.

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  26. This was great! I think assholesque tendencies are not just limited to men, though … What about women – I call them assholines!!

    Around here, they drive monster SUVs way too fast, are always in yoga wear, subsist on 1 pea a day and gallons of coffee and snarp at their perfectly coiffed kids as they stand in line for a Mocha Frappawhatever before taking the little darlings to their Montessori playground. Ugh.

    MJ

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    • Oh, you’re definitely right that it is not an illness limited to men. Most of the hummer-drivers around here tend to be trophy wives. They are 4’8″, bleach blond, perfectly coiffed and need to rappel out of the damn things.

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  27. Let me tell you, This “assholism” is spreading across the world. I still remember few years earlier, two international cricket players of my country bought hummers and the whole media made it the biggest news of that time. It made me laugh that time.
    As always great post. 🙂

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    • Oh no! I hope it is not considered an American export! Please, Arindam, PLEASE tell me we weren’t the first.

      But I know what you mean about the press thinking it so cool that someone would have a hummer. The US press made enough of a big deal when, in 1992 (thanks Wikipedia) Arnold Schwarzenegger bought the first publicly available Hummer that even I remember it. [He is also a cigar smoker AND I’m sure he lives in a palace. He’s three for three on the assholism index!]

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  28. Clearly they breed like jack rabbits and spread themselves around so we can all be equally annoyed. I recently saw someone with a Hummer and a Handicap License plate…talk about mismatched..dear lord you know I had to stay to see what a handicapped Hummer driver looked like and I will confirm, he looked like a very healthy asshole!

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  29. bigsheepcommunications

    We should start a foundation and find a cure (or a vaccine). Maybe we can get a grant from the Komen Foundation (hahahahah).

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  30. Sorry to say, but they are everywhere, and in a town near us all … and with countless ways of self-identification.

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    • Oh, I agree that they’re everywhere. I just wish we could take a few pieces of this house and spread the wealth. Want the foyer, Frank! (I’m keeping the pool)

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  31. Running from Hell with El

    Oh my gosh. Wow. We hike near River Bend and Great Falls a lot and it dismays me very much to see what the assholes are doing to the land to further their silly ends. Ugh.

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    • We went there not long ago and saw this monstrosity-to-be. There is another HUGE house down the street — with no trees and faux Greco-Roman sculptures lining the pretentiously long driveway. Ugh is right.

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  32. cooper

    If they find a cure, Washington D.C. will become a ghost town…

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    • That’s just because the rest of the country sends their assholes here. Keep them. Send us some good ones. And please, Pennsylvania, take Rick Santorum back.

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      • Please Elyse he can’t come back here..please! Ugh, the thought makes me cringe.

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        • Maybe we should poll my readers and see where we should send him — I want to suggest Canada, but my Canadian friends are still mad at me from when I suggested that all stupid people should be shipped to Manitoba. So I’d better not.

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          • Maybe he can go to the moon with Newt..sort of a buy one get one deal..lol.

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            • We can trick him, Tops! Let’s tell him it’s the Rapture and he has a special limo!

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              • I like the way your people think! And assholism is a definite disease. There is no cure yet, but we should strive to pass legislation that makes it easier for us to identify them: Like a giant flagpole sticking out of their asses. Not only will they then NOT be able to sit down next to us in restaurants or on airplanes, but it will keep them off the roads. Afterall, who can drive with a giant 14 foot flagpole sticking out of their ass?

                But Wait. I know who can do just that; an Ass Hole can. They’d just start driving around in those ginormous Monster Trucks, with a hold drilled in the floor, their long flagpoles dragging behind them along the highways starting charcoal fires and burning up the forests everywhere they go.

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                • I think an identification system would be really helpful. Although with global warming and the increased incidence of forest fires (even here in the normally wet enough east) I don’t want to increase the incidence of forest fires. Perhaps bumper stickers would work. But on the front AND back of the vehicle so we’d know whether or not to let them in.

                  Thanks for visiting Spectrum!

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                  • When they register their vehicle each year, they will be identified and issued an official DMV a-hole sticker, to be displayed on their license plate. That way the cops can monitor their activities as well.We all benefit by my new system.

                    Like

      • cooper

        and lock him away…

        Like

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