February 28, 2013
If You’re Going To Hack A Twitter Account, Do Something Interesting With It

By now you’ve heard about the Burger King/Jeep twitter hacks – some lowly DJ from Boston got bored and hacked the twitter accounts of Burger King and Jeep, shouted a bunch of bullshit on the pages, and then the internet exploded in response, as if hacking a twitter account and giving your friends shout outs is somehow on par with hacking a nuclear silo and wiping out Greenland. If there were a college for hackers, hacking a twitter account would be on the entrance exam, and if you can’t do it you have to take remedial hacking classes with all the other dummies. Corporate twitter accounts get hacked all the time; they don’t always get the same media coverage as the Burger King hack, but it they’ve happened and the results are always another example of a blown opportunity to do something interesting, kind of like my recent Quick Fix article about people who blew their one shot at glory. 

In July 2011, someone hacked a Fox News twitter account. This had the potential to be awesome. Did the hacker go all Colbert and assume the character of a dimwitted uber-conservative pundit to skewer the Fox News bullshit machine? Nope. He sent out a series of “BREAKING NEWS” tweets regarding the assassination of President Obama. With a “prank” that large scale, by the time anyone has heard of it they’ve also already heard that it’s fake; therefore, the initial prank is canceled out and is rendered stupid within minutes.

Tech blog Gizmodo had their twitter account hacked in August 2012. As you would expect, the hacker was able to perfectly execute the first half of his hack –gaining access to the account– but failed miserably at the second part — doing something with it. With limitless possibilities to be funny and/or make some kind of point, the hacker called black people the N-word – a lot. Then, more shout outs to his friends.

Oh, you want another example of twitter hackers getting stage fright and just hurling slurs because they don’t know what else to do after they hacked an account? In early 2012, The Huffington Post’s twitter feed was hijacked and, of course, a rapid fire series of tweets were sent out, most of which were homophobic slurs, occasionally directed at someone named Wes. Even sadder, one of the final tweets read, “Sup bitches??? Hacked by: New York Post.” This means that the Burger King and Jeep hacks, where the hacker claimed each company had been taken over by its rival (McDonalds and Cadillac, respectively) were a rip off of the HuffPo hack. The hacker behind the Burger King and Jeep hacks was himself a hack.

Hacking is one of those things that we all know isn’t necessarily good, but when it’s done well we push our feelings about the act aside and applauded the work. There is such a thing as a well-executed twitter hack.

There was once a man who felt he had been unjustly screwed over by PayPal and had his account frozen. So, he took over PayPay’s Twitter feed, changed their profile picture to steaming pile of shit, and continuously tweeted a link to an anti-PayPal site that detailed their shady business practices. It was a silly hack, but it had a purpose.
 
After the Newtown shootings, the Westboro Baptist Church announced they would picket the victim’s funerals. A hacker named Cosmo The God then took over a prominent church member’s twitter account, changed the background picture to an image that read “Pray for Newtown”, and re-tweeted White House petitions to get the WBC recognized as a hate group. No slurs, ignorance or shout outs; it was a hack with a point.

A lot of hacks are for the sake of it. But if you hack a high profile account, you’d better have some clever ideas up your sleeve or all you’ll be doing is showing the world that you can guess the name of an account holder’s dog.

February 5, 2013
Alternate Version of “Homeland” Quick Fix

A couple weeks ago Cracked ran this article of mine about how the son from the show Homeland is a psycho. But that’s not the only version of that article. There exists a secret second version only a few people had a chance to read.

The version I originally pitched is the one that was eventually published on Cracked; the one you can read at the link above. A couple days after I pitched it, the Sandy Hook Elementary tragedy happened, and there was a consensus between me, Cracked editor Adam Brown, and Cracked Editor-in-Chief Jack O’Brien, that we should delay the article for a little bit because of the subject matter. We originally wanted the article go up just before the Homeland season finale.

In an effort to save the article from being about a subject people (myself most certainly included) were too depressed to think about in any way, Jack suggested I re-write the whole thing with a new angle centered around how TV writers have no idea how to write child characters.

I wrote it up, liked it a lot, and I submitted it. About a week later I got an IM from Adam. He tells me he finally started watching Homeland and that I’m absolutely right about how shitty that kid is. Neither he nor Jack had ever seen the show, so they didn’t understand the profound uselessness of that kid. So, Adam ran the original version of the article.

And now I present to you the second version. Read’em both and compare!
 

——————————————————————————————————————-

Writers for TV dramas are all people who understand a character’s failing marriage better than they understand their own.  If a character isn’t experiencing some profound level of adult-centric pain, sometimes it’s obvious they have no clue what to do with them. It’s apparent on a lot of dramas, but none moreso than on Homeland, which features one of the most poorly written kids on TV, Chris Brody, the son of the Marine-turned-terrorist Nick Brody.

As inept as he is, Carl from The Walking Dead has potential. He might do something interesting. Maybe he’ll do a backflip or something? Chris Brody’s thing is being so oblivious to all of the horrible shit his horrible family goes through (rampant infidelity, terrorism, dirty politics, murder, conspiracy, etc.) that he comes off as a delusional secret psycho who’s so good at repressing his emotions that he might one day transition into a different Showtime series.

Homeland’s writers have no idea how a 12-year old boy would react to troubling news, so they brush him aside. Sometimes by literally telling him to leave the room, or with Mike, the guy Chris’ mom is banging on the side. Here’s Mike running interference when mom and big sis need some privacy to talk about a homicide.

And here are the writers again throwing Mike at Chris like a towel over a vibrator when Grandma drops by. This time it’s when the Brody’s — who are all scared shitless — are placed in a lavish CIA safehouse.


The writers for The Walking Dead clearly had no idea what to do with Carl for a while, so they had him occasionally wander off so they didn’t have to make him do things. In Dexter, Dexter’s kids were an integral part of the show for years, until the writers realized they were getting in the way of all the ritual murdering; so they were shipped off to live with their grandparents. On Lost, Walt looked like he was going to be important, and then he was promptly kidnapped by smoke numbers and was rarely heard of again.

Writing children can be difficult, especially if most of your writing sessions involve talking about new ways the characters can fuck and murder this week. Writers often confuse innocence with stupidity, so they either write kids as oblivious or they over-compensate and make them borderline evil child geniuses.

There’s an incredible chance that some of Homeland’s writers have kids, just like the writers of The Walking Dead, Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Dexter. Yet kids might as well be dogs the writers tie to a bike rack while the adults grab a latte, or worse, used as props to raise the stakes for the adults.

In the penultimate episode in Homeland’s second season, the Brody family reaches a boiling point. In one scene, all of their anxieties spill out and it’s impossible for any of them to escape from the truth anymore – they suck.  

So Chris immediately storms away and starts playing video games.

You’ve probably turned to video games as a distraction from the harshness of life, but Chris’ version of it is so goddamn ridiculous you have to wonder if the writers gained their understanding of pre-teens by asking old people what they think of kids today.

If today’s TV drama writers made a show specifically about kids and how they deal with life, by the third episode we’d see all the kids evaporate into clouds and float away as an engine revved up in the background and the writers fled the scene.  

January 29, 2013
Rejected Quick Fix Pitch: Lupe Fiasco’s Fiasco

They can’t all be winners. Though, this pitch almost was. This one was about Lupe Fiasco getting kicked off stage at a concert celebrating President Obama’s 2nd inauguration. The editors at Cracked really liked it, so much so that there was some talk of turning it into an episode of an upcoming Cracked web show. Ultimately, a little too much time had passed and the subject wasn’t relevant anymore.

I never got to write a second draft, which would have been a little longer and obviously more refined. So this one is a little rough around the edges. But, still, it should be a fun read.


—————————————————————————————————————————————-

On the Sunday before the President Obama’s second Inauguration, rapper Lupe Fiasco was booked as the headliner for the nonsensically named StartUp Rockon concert to celebrate Barack Obama for being able to keep his job.

Come performance time, Fiasco sang this catchy little diddy…

“Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist…Gaza Strip was getting bombed, Obama didn’t say shit. That’s why I ain’t vote for him, next one either.”


He was booted off stage, and some suspect it wasn’t only because his rhyme schemes are shit. The whole fiasc—uh, calamity sparked all sorts of debates and anger over free speech, which would be valid if not for this little fact: he performed that one song for a half-hour. You can pull that kind of shit if you’re, say, Bruce Springsteen in front of union guys or Ted Nudgent in Mississippi. But people were there to attend a nice, controversy-free evening of fun, and then the guy who’s supposed to entertain rants for the length of a sitcom. He probably wouldn’t have been kicked off if he said what he wanted to say and then moved along through his catalogue of 1 ½ hit songs. No administration wants that kind of anti-free speech heat. But, no; instead, Lupe performed something that was like a mix of a Phish jam session and a pissed off Youtube commentor on a video of a waving flag.

We’re willing to bet Lupe didn’t get kicked off stage because of the anti-Obama stuff. He was kicked off stage because he didn’t do his stupid, easy-as-shit job. Kelly Clarkson is an avid Ron Paul supporter, but she acted like an adult and sang Obama a song right in front of him. But Lupe’s not the only person in this story who failed at their job miserably.

You see, back in 2011, Lupe Fiasco expressed his freedom of speech by publicly disagreeing with many of President Obama’s foreign policy decision by taking the high road of public discourse and calling the president a terrorist. We don’t know how many times someone’s been called a repugnant butt-fucking child molester and was then immediately given a big hug of acceptance, but the promoter in charge of the StartUp Rockon concert is sure things like that happen all the time. This guy’s one job is to make sure the people who come to perform to honor the president don’t think he’s just Bin Laden in a suit. He might as well have invited Ted Nugent and the outcome would have been about the same, just with more bazooka-shaped guitars getting rammed up the ass of pigs dressed like Hilary Clinton.  And this all because some dumbass didn’t vet a second dumbass by doing a simple “Lupe Fiasco+Obama” Google search.

Always Google search, folks.

January 28, 2013
I’m in Maxim Magazine!

Remember how in my last post I mentioned that I’m doing some side work for Maxim magazine? Well, I went to the grocery store this weekend, took a gander at the magazine rack, and BOOM. There it was; the January/February issue I was told my piece would be in. And all I had to do was fork over $6 for the issue. (Ah, so that’s why they pay so well…).

Here it is, scanned directly from my copy. It’s the one with the big, sloppy MSPaint red circle, titled “Big Bang Beer.”

image

I wrote and got paid for two pieces but the second was moved to the next issue. So assuming  the other two I was paid to write for the following issue also make it in, there’s a good chance I might have 3 pieces in the next issue. I don’t know if that will happen, but it’d be nice.

Also, and I didn’t even notice this until a full 24-hours after I bought the thing, but my piece is teased on the cover, in the bottom left corner…

image

It’s here ^

I don’t know if you can click the image and read what I wrote, but if not just trust that it’s the greatest thing ever written. Or maybe just a fun little  thing about how beer is still drinkable even after it’s been nuked. As I figured, I was not credited, but I knew that going into it so its no surprise. I’m just happy this is a thing. I can hold my writing in my hands.

Holy shit.

Of course, after I told my mom about it, all she could say was “I’m proud of you, but six-dollars?! Why so much?!”

January 24, 2013
I’m Still Here

Hello.

Remember me? I’m Luis. This is my Tumblr. I’ve been ignoring this thing lately. I got busy trying to not be painfully and depressingly broke all the time. Also, my girlfriend and I have been spending a lot of time together, to the point that we might as well move in but neither of us has the money for that. So when I’m not writing for money I’m spending time with the girl that makes me forget I’m so painfully and depressingly broke.

Yesterday I posted my first original Tumblr-only thing in a while. It’s below this post if you’re reading this on the main page. It’s not much; just some silliness I wrote as a distraction from another thing I was writing (for money).

I haven’t checked when I last posted links to some of my paid writing work but here are some notable articles and essays of mine that have recently been published.

For MCD, I waxed non-poetically on how a tattoo explains why Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez still has a job. I dived through five dream layers to pull out this article about the most copied sound in Hollywood, the BRRHHAAAM from Inception. And I vomited and pooped and sneezed and coughed a whole lot just so I could eventually write a first-hand account of how a stupid person like me reacts to getting his ass kicked by a flu and a stomach virus at the same time.

I’ve been pretty focused on Cracked.com stuff; specifically with Quick Fixes. By my probably flawed calculations, there have been 229 Quick Fix articles since the format went live on May 26th, 2012. Eleven of those are mine. Assuming I know how to do basic math — which I know I cannot, but I’m trying — that means 4.8% of all published Quick Fix articles were written by me.  I don’t know if that’s a good number. I don’t even know what that means. I don’t know why I took the time to calculate any of that. What a waste of time. But since I did, I’m going to work my ass off to ensure I get to a full 5% soon. And seeing as I don’t have a degree in astrophysics, I am unqualified figure out how many articles I need to write versus when I need to write them by to reach that goal. If I could do that math I’d be working at NASA and figuring out everyone’s tip at every restaurant I go to just to show off. (Side Note: Tip calculators on phones are amazing).

Some notable recent Quick Fixes include me making fun of Yoko Ono’s shitty clothing line. Also, a totally-still-relevant article about people who are disappointed that the world didn’t end last month. I got ever-so-slightly controversial by writing about people who blew their one shot at glory. And most recently I wrote about how the son from Homeland is a crazy, emotionally dead psycho waiting to explode. That last one, I think, has been criminally under viewed.

In addition to all that, I’ve been doing some side work for Maxim magazine. Yes, that Maxim magazine. The one with the mostly naked ladies on the cover and on every page. Obviously, I can’t link to my work because you can’t link to paper yet, but I can tell you that if you want to read my words in print you should buy yourself a copy of every issue of Maxim in the coming months, starting with the upcoming January/February issue, which will be the first issue my words appear in. Honestly, I don’t even know if I’ll be credited, but the work is fun and the pay is crazy compared to everything else I do. My contributions will be short and featured in the first 10-15 pages of each issue, in a section called Circus Maximus, which is kind of a catch-all of weird and fun facts, trivia, and news bits. I’ll post scans of my sections, assuming I don’t forget to buy a copy for myself, which is entirely likely.

And that’s pretty much it. You’re all caught up with my professional life and a tiny bit with my personal life. As the title of this post suggests, I’m still here. I haven’t abandoned this Tumblr. I hope to post more original stuff soon. I have a tiny web comic project I’ve been working on with the guy who DMs the D&D campaign I’m in. I’ll probably post some of those at some point. And I’ll try to remember to promote any new articles of mine on here as soon as they’re published.

Hope you’re well.

uh…so…bye.

January 23, 2013
Things I Will Rap About When I Become A Rapper

Bitches

Suckers (of both the MC and candied variety)

Baked goods

Retirement planning

Busting caps in mark-ass busters

Being unable to find a decent doughnut shop in my city

Living on the Streets (which was the title of the late 90s WB teen drama I co-starred in)

The unwatched special features on Blu Rays I’ve purchased.

Whichever liquor brand I am the spokesperson for.

People I have beef with up to and including that kid from the 4th grade who made fun of me for having a Sesame Street bookbag.

November 15, 2012
The Orion Constellation Should Be Called The X-Wing Constellation

I think I’ve made my point. Get on it, astrophysicists.

11:03am  |   URL: http://tmblr.co/ZjU9CxXKWhTg
Filed under: x-wing orion 
November 6, 2012
A Bunch of New Articles on Cracked and MCD

The posts on here have been infrequent, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t had articles being published.

Today being Election Day, I’ve got two Election-based articles. One is a Cracked Quick Fix titled The 6 Most Baffling Trends in 2012 Election Propaganda, and I like it a lot. Read it and share it. I want this one to be huge.

The second Election thing is an MCD article called 5 Things Your Political Leaning Says About You.

And then I’ve got a bunch of MCD stuff that I never get to link here. So here’s a link dump of my own stuff from recent weeks.

3 Fictional Things the Government Had to Tell Us Weren’t Real

Search Engine Obstacle Course

GIF Life Lessons, Part III

The 3 Ways To Protest (According to Recent News Stories)

October 15, 2012
New Cracked Article — 3 Ways Brazil’s Political System Makes Ours Look Sane

I’ve got a new Quick Fix article up on Cracked! In this one, I impart on to you knowledge about the silly things that go on in Brazil when election season rolls around. Give it a read and share it. Please.

EDIT: I’ve updated the link. It should link you to the article now, instead of the Cracked main page.

September 28, 2012
Three MCD Articles in One Week!

It’s been a busy week for me at MCD. Three — count’em, three! — articles of mine hit the front page. And all consecutively. It all started on Wednesday with 5 More Life Lessons Learned From GIFs. Then things took a turn for the timely and the technical with The 4 Worst Moments of The NFL Replacement Referees. The trilogy comes to an end today with Yahoo! Answers: Ask A Stupid Question Day Edition.

Take some time to read them and spread them around. Wait…you won’t? Wow. You have no problem being an asshole, do you?

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