Top Ten Videos of 2012

The hell with it. This year at least, I’m just going to do the whole list in one big post. It’s not that each video doesn’t deserve its own individual post, it’s more that there are only so many hours in the day. So here we go.

10. “Apple Scotland — iPhone commercial for Siri” by Gavin McInnes
[NSFW]

UPDATE: Never mind. Fuck off, Gavin McInnes.

9. “A Dramatic Surprise on a Quiet Square” by TNT HD Benelux

8. “Thank You Hater!” by Clever Pie and Isabel Fay
[NSFW]


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Obama Re-elected: The Twitter Symphony

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High Society Wedding Hathos

Talk is cheap, and snark is the cheapest kind — which is why the internet is swamped with it. Fortunately there are exceptions to the rule, those relatively few writers on the web whose skills raise them well above the garden variety haters.

One such iconoclastic wit goes by the online alias of Mobutu Sese Seko. His Twitter profile says, “Former Notorious African Dictator. Politics blogger at @Gawker and @GQMagazine.com. Guest at @Deadspin, The @Classical and @Vice. Registered sexhaver.” His blog Et tu, Mr. Destructo? is a longtime resident of my sidebar, and can be found at http://www.mrdestructo.com.

just married limoMobutu isn’t the first to take aim at the New York Times’s Weddings section. These weekly matrimonial hagiographies are like a carefully preserved relic from the gilded age: fawning reports of joyous unions between necessarily well-bred, well-educated, well-off young paragons of virtue. Perhaps, like me, Mobutu hadn’t bothered to look at any of these tulle-wrapped flauntings in a while. In any case, yesterday he did, and was moved to embark upon a most entertaining flurry of tweeted hathos.

The New York Times, “Sage Mehta and Michael Robinson”:

Alexandra Sage Mehta and Michael Robinson do not seem to belong to the Facebook generation that expresses itself in sentence fragments. In conversation, their sentences are grammatical and lovely and often sound as if previously written, if not rewritten.

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Since You Asked, Mr. Trump…

Sometimes they just tee it right up for you, don’t they. Well, off the top of my head I’d say a full body waxing, re-taking Algebra II, babysitting an autistic badger in a studio apartment, getting audited, hiking across Libya in a snowsuit, and passing a gallstone all qualify. But don’t take it from me (or not just from me) — check out this curated sample of replies from the rest of Twitter:
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Levon Helm Died Today

The Band 2005710005
Levon Helm, May 1971
Levon Helm, it seems, represents more to me than I might have thought. I find myself unable to just acknowledge his death with the usual, respectful “RIP” posts of video clips on Facebook and Twitter. I suppose it’s because he was more than just a member of the Band, a group with an important place in rock music history. He was a terrific artist, and his pure expressive vitality spread into more than one medium. Most of all, he was authentic. More on that in a minute.

Helm’s huge influence as a singer, drummer and all-around musician is widely and rightfully hailed, not least by Jon Pareles in his New York Times obit. The man’s wonderful acting turns in a handful of movies is (perhaps understandably) getting somewhat less play.
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