0446: "In Popular Culture"

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Luna Santin
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Luna Santin » Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:56 am UTC

I suppose this may be an odd move, but hi. I'm the Wikipedia admin who deleted the "In Popular Culture" article. Figured I might as well stop over here for some discussion, if it's needed. There's not a lot I can immediately think to add to the deletion rationale, but if you missed it, see here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia: ... ar_Culture

Note that AfD pages are not majority votes, but policy debates; I see that a LOT of people were suggesting we should keep the page, but almost all of those people were pretty obviously wearing their "xkcd hat" while commenting, and probably either don't understand Wikipedia's practices in detail or don't care. That's fine, really, so long as they realize their comments are effectively weighed relative to the amount of "clue" they present.

It's all in good fun. I respect that.

As far as the inevitable edits to the Wood article... meh? Similar things have happened on a larger scale, every time Colbert mentions an article on his show. Yes, we're going to revert it. No, I don't think most of us really mind. Wikipedia is intentionally very open to editing from most anyone; the idea in my opinion is that once you're curious about editing and understand the project and its goals, you're that much more likely to help out. Determined problem users can usually be dealt with easily enough, anyway.

I'm probably going to bed right after posting this, but I'll check back in case anybody had questions for me or some such.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby rufman » Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:08 pm UTC

"vandalizing" wikipedia pages can be fun...especially if your bored in class ;)

As long as you don't over do it it's ok...btw wikipedia editors can be obnoxiousness.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby VelociraptorEvader » Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:33 pm UTC

a little out of left field and j/king but thanks for rui%ni``~ng the internet Randall. now th@ the blog*23bhere has :mpl09ded e^R4tything i5 fucked up.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby marsman57 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:43 pm UTC

As soon as I read the topic, I visited the wiki page and saw that it has been vandalized to contain the exact word-for-word xkcd section. I was kind of disappointed. I feel the xkcd fandom is getting way too predictable.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby keithc » Mon Jul 07, 2008 12:53 pm UTC

craiz wrote:I'm surprised there wasn't an "In Poplar Culture" on the wood page...

Boom, Boom!

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DragonHawk
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby DragonHawk » Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:00 pm UTC

rufman wrote:"vandalizing" wikipedia pages can be fun...

Vandalizing property can be fun, too. Can I spray paint your car/monitor/whatever? How about letting me load some malicious software on your computer? Care to open up your stuff to public damage? No? Then stay the fsck off Wikipedia. KTHXBYE. :evil:

BTW, for those who are not aware, Wikipedia defines vandalism as "Deliberately non-constructive edits". All such edits have to be reverted, costing other editors time and effort that could be spent on constructive ends. So it doesn't have to be "PENIS!!!" or something equally vulgar/juvenile for it to be vandalism.
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On a lighter note:

I'm surprised nobody has pointed out the obvious typo in the alt-text. "Blagosphere" is spelled wrong.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby sea otter » Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:17 pm UTC

zolota wrote:
mikethegreat wrote:Randall! Come on dude! I realize it's Wikipedia, and isn't always accurate, but I'd expect you to know that Jayne gets his rainstick in Episode 6: Our Mrs. Reynolds. Pfah!

Damn, good eye. I didn't even notice this, but you're completely right.

"All I got is that dumbass stick sounds like it's rainin' – how come you got a wife?"

Good - I logged in just to make sure someone had pointed that out - was even trying to remember the exact words of that quote, thank you, Zolota.

Me and the Robitussin are headed back to the couch now. Have a nice flu-free day.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Sprocket » Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:23 pm UTC

Awe...Randall's bein' clever again.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby SimonBob » Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:27 pm UTC

I thought the only reason any articles had "In Popular Culture" sections was because every time a Trivia section went up, someone would tag it with the "Trivia Sections Are Discouraged" template. Yknow, trivia, that's just random crap, but popular culture references are totally notable!

Anyway, I hope this teaches some of you to be better vandals. Don't go for the obvious pages; find something around the back that isn't being covered by an organized project scope, and never broadcast your edit until you've reached a situation where the hilarity will be maximized. ("Sorry, Mr. President, but the Bangkok prostitution page clearly states that you're the shadow leader of a chain of twenty brothels. And that's been up since February so it must be true.")
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Heisenberg » Mon Jul 07, 2008 2:51 pm UTC

DragonHawk wrote:Wikipedia defines vandalism as "Deliberately non-constructive edits". All such edits have to be reverted...

Merriam-Webster defines vandalism as "willful or malicious destruction or defacement of public or private property."

"Non-constructive edits" are not vandalism. Wikipedia's sour attitude toward these individuals does not make them criminals, no matter how Wikipedia chooses to define "criminal."

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Random832 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:01 pm UTC

Anoria wrote:I was obviously disappointed to see that the article and its talk page have been deleted mere hours after the intrigue began. However, the related search results page for "in popular culture" is interesting on its own:


Fix'd.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby politico » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:17 pm UTC

DragonHawk wrote:I'm surprised nobody has pointed out the obvious typo in the alt-text. "Blagosphere" is spelled wrong.


http://xkcd.com/148/

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Starsky
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Starsky » Mon Jul 07, 2008 3:54 pm UTC

So the "revert" in Wikipedia wasn't so much to prevent the implosion of the blogosphere as to deal with a sever case of Someone on the Internet is WRONG syndrome. (or maybe "did something wrong").

BTW, I really do appreciate the people who maintain Wikipedia. Its a pretty amazing source of information on almost everything.
Last edited by Starsky on Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:04 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby brillian » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:08 pm UTC

By sheer coincidence I watched the episode with the rainstick last night, and it's definitely No. 6, Our Mrs. Reynolds.

Sorry

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root
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby root » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:19 pm UTC

This page is semi-protected.
Editing of this article by new or unregistered users is currently disabled until July 10, 2008 because a mention in xkcd is causing significant disruption in the form of useless "wood in pop culture" section additions.
See the protection policy and protection log for more details. If you cannot edit this article and you wish to make a change, you can discuss changes on the talk page, request unprotection, log in, or create an account.


Luna wasn't kidding! Way to go guys (and gals) :p

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby ThemePark » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:22 pm UTC

Starsky wrote:So the "revert" in Wikipedia wasn't so much to prevent the implosion of the blogosphere as to deal with a sever case of Somebody on the Internet is WRONG syndrome. (or maybe "did something wrong").

BTW, I really do appreciate the people who maintain Wikipedia. Its a pretty amazing source of information on almost everything.

Reading your post I was certain that you had gotten the comic wrong. I've read it several times and up until now was certain it was "Something on the Internet is wrong.". Then you post, I go read the comic, and you make a donkey out of me. :oops:
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TomKat
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby TomKat » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:42 pm UTC

wood gives me wood

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby tetsujin » Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:45 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
DragonHawk wrote:Wikipedia defines vandalism as "Deliberately non-constructive edits". All such edits have to be reverted...

Merriam-Webster defines vandalism as "willful or malicious destruction or defacement of public or private property."

"Non-constructive edits" are not vandalism. Wikipedia's sour attitude toward these individuals does not make them criminals, no matter how Wikipedia chooses to define "criminal."


It's not about defining "criminal behavior", it's about defining behavior that's not acceptable on Wikipedia... Wikipedia cannot arbitrarily rewrite the legal definition of vandalism, what constitutes vandalism you could be arrested for, but they can define what constitutes vandalism on the Wikipedia site - what it means when they refer to "vandalism", and what their position is on the acceptability of those sorts of edits. They lay down those rules as a guideline for editors who actually want to be helpful to the site.

I seriously hate all this trivia junk on Wikipedia. If your article has to contain the word "fictional" within the opening sentence (as in "Luke Skywalker is a fictional character born on the fictional planet Tatooine in the fictional Star Wars Universe"...) it probably isn't worth having on Wikipedia. And regarding trivia sections in legitimate articles, people seem to forget (or not to understand in the first place) that the point of Wikipedia is to be usefully human readable - not to be the ultimate cross-reference database between everything that ever existed and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That means you put in references because they're meaningful, not just because you can draw a line between a particular article and your favorite TV show...

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Starsky » Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:02 pm UTC

ThemePark wrote:Reading your post I was certain that you had gotten the comic wrong...


But you were wrong... on the internet. :D

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby beachton » Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:22 pm UTC

Why am I the only one bothered by the fact that a rainstick is not made of wood? Originally they were made of cactus with thorns shoved in. The ones in the gift shops are made of bamboo, which is grass, not wood. They have instructions online to make them out of PVC pipe, bamboo skewers and unpopped popcorn, which is just an abomination, but still not wood.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby ThemePark » Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:40 pm UTC

Starsky wrote:
ThemePark wrote:Reading your post I was certain that you had gotten the comic wrong...


But you were wrong... on the internet. :D

Touché. :D
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Mlak » Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:42 pm UTC

I can believe no one has spotted the fact that the Firefly reference is wrong.
Jayne receives a "rain stick" in episode entitled "Our Mrs. Reynolds" not "Jaynestown" as stated.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Dobblesworth » Mon Jul 07, 2008 5:55 pm UTC

Mlak wrote:I can believe no one has spotted the fact that the Firefly reference is wrong.
Jayne receives a "rain stick" in episode entitled "Our Mrs. Reynolds" not "Jaynestown" as stated.

I'm sorry Mlak, but mikethegreat on page 1 (about 3 posts into the thread) did in fact point this out approximately 14hrs in advance of you, as did a few others who verified it. I'm sorry, but you quite honestly phail.

And a note to Heisenberg:
Heisenberg wrote:Merriam-Webster defines vandalism as "willful or malicious destruction or defacement of public or private property."

So, what do we have here with this 'project' to playfully edit en.wikipedia.org/wiki/wood? Let's see, wilful CHECK!, defacement CHECK!, public property CHECK! So while you may think Wikipedia's usage of vandalism is not a true application of the courtroom definition, I beg to differ. Informing the world that the commander bloke from BSG has a desk made of wood is not relevant information to the article and just pisses off the Wikimedia Foundation community, in terms of the editors who have to take the time out to lock up such articles and carry out the edit reverts, as well as those readers and contributors who aren't senseless morons.

In fact, this whole thing where non- or newly-registered members, in terms of both these fora and Wi'pedia, screwed with a well-researched article, is simply confirming Randall's message with the comic. "In Popular Culture" was probably released with a purpose of pointing out this pathetic subculture on the Internet, which feels that no piece of information is worthy of existence unless it has a bleeding Summer Glau section at the bottom. He baited you into messing around, you fell for the all-too-easy bait, and now he's laughing at you from his dirigible in the sky.
Last edited by Dobblesworth on Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:08 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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DragonHawk
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby DragonHawk » Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:02 pm UTC

politico wrote:
DragonHawk wrote:I'm surprised nobody has pointed out the obvious typo in the alt-text. "Blagosphere" is spelled wrong.

http://xkcd.com/148/

...

...
The title text wrote:Someday the 'in popular culture' section will have its own article with an 'in popular culture' section. It will reference this title-text referencing it, and the blogosphere will implode.

(Emphasis added.)

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby MuToiD_MaN » Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:34 pm UTC

You sheep. Stop terrorizing Wikipedia already.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby SlyReaper » Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:37 pm UTC

I'm going to have to confiscate Randall's geek credentials for not knowing that Jayne was actually given the rain stick in episode 6: Our Mrs Reynolds
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby EvanED » Mon Jul 07, 2008 6:48 pm UTC

tetsujin wrote:I seriously hate all this trivia junk on Wikipedia. If your article has to contain the word "fictional" within the opening sentence (as in "Luke Skywalker is a fictional character born on the fictional planet Tatooine in the fictional Star Wars Universe"...) it probably isn't worth having on Wikipedia. And regarding trivia sections in legitimate articles, people seem to forget (or not to understand in the first place) that the point of Wikipedia is to be usefully human readable - not to be the ultimate cross-reference database between everything that ever existed and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That means you put in references because they're meaningful, not just because you can draw a line between a particular article and your favorite TV show...

I disagree. Fictional characters very well can have a whole article. For instance, do you think (/me opens a can of worms) the Jesus article should exist? (Or at least the stuff that isn't in the "Historical Jesus" section. After all, other stuff could be moved into the article on The Bible.

And in general, I think the "in popular culture" sections are neat and interesting.

And nor am I some Wikipedia libertarian who thinks anything could belong... the "in popular culture" article, as it was when I looked at it last night, definitely didn't. And I will stand by the description of most of the edits that take place in the mention of Wikipedia in XKCD or Colbert or similar avenues as vandalism.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby thebandit » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:00 pm UTC

craiz wrote:I'm surprised there wasn't an "In Poplar Culture" on the wood page...


Guys, the thread was won a long time ago.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby cburke » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:05 pm UTC

heh-heh heh-heh
He said, "Wood".

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby pyroman » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:10 pm UTC

I am personally a major fan of Wikipedia. It has the potential to be a vast and very up to date source of information. That being said senseless vandalism of pages as funny as it may be for those who get the jokes only goes to hurt the image of Wikipedia. while i am fully aware Wikipedia is not and probably never will be perfect it can still be an extremely useful tool giving you a good starting point for whatever it is you may want to look up. Dont ruin it. there are other places to put up all the inside jokes.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby sje46 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:12 pm UTC

EvanED wrote:I disagree. Fictional characters very well can have a whole article. For instance, do you think (/me opens a can of worms) the Jesus article should exist? (Or at least the stuff that isn't in the "Historical Jesus" section. After all, other stuff could be moved into the article on The Bible.


Maybe a less controversial example would be Homer from The Odyssey?

EDIT:
I mean Odysseus.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Grego » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:16 pm UTC

Speaking of which, why doesn't Jesus have an "in popular culture" section?

(Or, more specifically, the article about Jesus)

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby tetsujin » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:30 pm UTC

EvanED wrote:
tetsujin wrote:I seriously hate all this trivia junk on Wikipedia. If your article has to contain the word "fictional" within the opening sentence (as in "Luke Skywalker is a fictional character born on the fictional planet Tatooine in the fictional Star Wars Universe"...) it probably isn't worth having on Wikipedia. And regarding trivia sections in legitimate articles, people seem to forget (or not to understand in the first place) that the point of Wikipedia is to be usefully human readable - not to be the ultimate cross-reference database between everything that ever existed and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. That means you put in references because they're meaningful, not just because you can draw a line between a particular article and your favorite TV show...

I disagree. Fictional characters very well can have a whole article. For instance, do you think (/me opens a can of worms) the Jesus article should exist? (Or at least the stuff that isn't in the "Historical Jesus" section. After all, other stuff could be moved into the article on The Bible.


Well, I made my statement in absolute terms mostly to emphasize the point. I would entertain the idea that some fictional characters and such might be worth an article on Wikipedia - the problem is that a lot of people are treating the site as a dumping ground - creating fansites on Wikipedia's dime, essentially. They lose perspective on what's real and what's fiction, load up the articles with a bunch of plot points and trivia, and then "fix it" by inserting the word "fictional".
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby sje46 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:35 pm UTC

Grego wrote:Speaking of which, why doesn't Jesus have an "in popular culture" section?

(Or, more specifically, the article about Jesus)

I made a post on the talk page about that. On the bottom, it should be.

I bet that that article is the most edited and vandalized out of all Wikipedia's articles. Ther eprobably was that section in it, a while ago.

EDIT:

here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_d ... s_of_Jesus
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Pxtl » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:40 pm UTC

Actually, it looks like the place to discuss "In Popular Culture" sections of Wikipedia articles is

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia: ... 2_articles

Which has already been marked with its link to XKCD by some helpful wikipedian.

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby rtconner » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:49 pm UTC

You want to vandalize this article I assume...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia: ... 2_articles

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby Grego » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:53 pm UTC

sje46 wrote:I bet that that article is the most edited and vandalized out of all Wikipedia's articles.

Unsurprisingly, it's not open for editing. However, somewhat surprisingly, you can freely edit the article on Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism. Similarly, the Christian holy scriptures are locked whilst the Guru Granth Sahib is readily available to change...

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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby sje46 » Mon Jul 07, 2008 7:59 pm UTC

Grego wrote:
sje46 wrote:I bet that that article is the most edited and vandalized out of all Wikipedia's articles.

Unsurprisingly, it's not open for editing. However, somewhat surprisingly, you can freely edit the article on Guru Nanak Dev, the founder of Sikhism. Similarly, the Christian holy scriptures are locked whilst the Guru Granth Sahib is readily available to change...

Not that surprising. Christianity is more popular than Sikhism, so there is going to be more vandalism. But I do know one person who vandalized it.

I also tried to vandalize it on Conservapedia. I couldn't.

But this is my argument for that section:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Jesus ... ar_Culture
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby radtea » Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:15 pm UTC

It's good to see the fine art of trolling for suckers isn't entirely dead.

Back in the days before the Endless September started us on the graceless path of degeneration to the steaming pile of crap that is Web 2.0, trolling was about baiting USENet newbs with subtly incorrect information, rather than behaving like a thuggish asshole.

A classic troll would be to make a reasonable sounding post that contained incorrect peripheral information--putting Picard under the heap of tribbles, say, while making an otherwise sound argument about the merits of foley vs CGI. Bonus points awarded for cross-posting such that the ensuing heartfelt corrections from smarmy geeks would suck bandwidth in newsgroups entirely unrelated to the question, potentially provoking a cross-group flamewar.

The trick to trolling was to make the error small enough it wasn't obviously deliberate--at least to a certain kind of person. Pushing Jayne's rainstick into the wrong episode, particularly one where he is on the receiving end of numerous other honours, hits the balance perfectly, even moreso because Jayne's complaint about the rainstick--comparing it unfavourably to Mal's purported wife--is so memorable and such an obvious clue that Randall's reference is incorrect.

So this comic has a nice historical span: it successfully references one of the earliest forms of Internet shenanigans, while instigating one of the latest.
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Re: In Popular Culture Discussion

Postby crp » Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:20 pm UTC

So what's the next target? Water? Air? English?

I prefer English, so we can do "This sentence is English"
Edit: We'd have to write the entire article on english in a different language, preferably spanglish or Kellogs decoder rings


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