September 13 - 19, 1999

Get Real (Fox)
Action (Fox)




Five Non-Operating Systems

Five Hugh Grant Foils

Five Musical Kings

Five Islands That Are Not Alone

Five Cliched Exaggerations

 Five Inconsequential Behemoths

Here are five that are large but aren't in charge:
Jesse Ventura became a governor, so now Hulk Hogan thinks he should run for president. Not to go against Hulkamania, but a guy who trafficked in steroids and was out-acted by Sylvester Stallone while playing a character named "Thunderlips" seems a better fit for a Cabinet position.
To prove that the United States is graying in a hurry, one need look no further than the Nielsen ratings of CBS. The former Tiffany network likes to tout the fact that it's America's most watched broadcaster, but advertisers just don't care. The perception on Madison Avenue is that old people are sitting around watching TV and hoarding the nickels they earned shoeing horses back in the Stone Age. Meanwhile, young people are out buying condoms and Stridex and barely have enough time to see what Kevin Williamson has coughed up this week. Those are the people that move product! Advertisers find the CBS demographic to be about as appealing as Bea Arthur and Abe Vigoda doing the jitterbug while covered in linguini, which coincidentally, airs this Friday at 9:30 on CBS.
For some reason, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is the index of choice for measuring stock market performance. The only probable explanations for the Dow's popularity are that it happens to be maintained by the same parent company as the Wall Street Journal or that people have it confused with Tony Dow. Among the litany of reasons the Dow is an invalid measure are that it is price-weighted instead of value-weighted, it contains a mere 30 stocks that do not accurately represent the American economy, and it is increasingly quoted by people who would fare better putting their money under a mattress.
Most of the Guinness Book Of Records is useless. While no one would argue the need to catalog freaks and human oddities, who would've ever guessed that a book named by a company trying to promote alcohol consumption would feature pointless stunt after pointless stunt?
White flight has been followed by corporate flight, with companies building their own corporate parks out in the suburbs. There's no longer a need for skyscrapers or the accompanying competition of having the world's tallest building. That misguided civic phallic pride has shifted to Asia, where Japan, China, Singapore, and Malaysia have all at one time or another had plans in place to erect the biggest skyscraper of them all. Unfortunately all this Eastern braggadocio has awakened the insecure middle American child, also known as Chicago. The blustery city now has plans for a building even bigger than the former Sears Tower (the name changed when the company moved to the suburbs). Here's hoping they get it up. That way, maybe they'll be at peace with their inferiority and fewer House of Blues restaurants will open.

Emil Gam