Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Directions: Match the not-so-famous last words below with their famous speaker:

A. “Ah, blow it out your ass—I can out-swim you bitches goal to goal in full armor!”

    1. Amelia Earhart
B. “Let’s see you get out there and dance to “ゴンド ラの唄,” you tone-deaf dolts.”

    2. Howard Hughes
C. “Listen, Eli. I think I know the difference between a slipknot and a cow-hitch.”

    3. Sun-Tzu
D. “Huh? Ich spreche nicht besonders gut Deutsch—Did that Kraut just call me a queen?”

    4. Jimmy Hoffa
E. “How do you reckon I’ll starve to death? I’ve got all these peas!”

    5. Christopher Marlowe


A – 3. Sun-Tzu
As the legend goes, the fabled author of The Art of War (circa 403-221 B.C.) vanished into hiding or thin air—depending on your level of gullibility, shortly after being hired by King Helü to overthrow the Chu kingdom. For years, mysterious sightings of Sun-Tzu were reported: everywhere from the Jade Dragon all-you-can-eat buffet to the China Palace all-you-can-eat buffet. In fact, after his glory years as a military mastermind, Sun-Tzu lived a decidedly chaste life in what is now Hong Kong working as a crime scene clean-up specialist and high school water polo instructor.

Amelia Earhart

B – 1. Amelia Earhart
Initially, sources reported that Earhart, the first aviatrix to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean, had in 1937 crashed her plane into the Pacific off Howland Island, either dying on impact or dying on impact, then drowning. One theory surfaced that Earhart was executed on Saipan Island (at that time occupied by the Japanese), and another suggested she had in fact been the notorious “Tokyo Rose,” the much-publicized propagandist who, during WWII made broadcasts designed to weaken American morale. These speculations are of course, just that—speculation. We can now confirm that after crash landing in the Pacific, Earhart was rescued by Japanese bootleggers who introduced her at the famed House of the Open Obi Gentleman’s Club and Exotic Cabaret as “Osaka Rose,” a tragic mistake, as Earhart had absolutely no sense of Eastern rhythms.


C – 4. Jimmy Hoffa
The urban legend maintained that Jimmy Hoffa, former Teamsters bigwig and union icon, was “whacked” by a mob hitman in late July 1975. Rumors circulated that after dining at the Machus Red Fox Restaurant in Bloomfield, Michigan, with two men who witnesses described as “Wawwy mawng aoeee” (the witnesses all mysteriously lost their tongues), Hoffa was shot, maimed, drawn, quartered, drowned, shot again, killed, then buried alive under Giants Stadium, after which he served as financial advisor and towel boy to the 2008 N.F.L. champs until his death last month from auto-erotic asphyxiation.


D – 5. Christopher Marlowe
Elizabethan playwright Christopher “Kit” Marlowe is said to have been killed in a bar fight in Deptford, England in 1593. Always under close scrutiny from the infamous Star Chamber, documents indicate that Marlowe was privy to incriminating information about several powerful leaders in British government and that the author’s murder was an attempt to quiet the quill of an inflammatory upstart. Another theory holds that Marlowe faked his own death and became Shakespeare and/or Cervantes. In an even more byzantine twist, some asserted that Shakespeare became Cervantes, changed his name to Marlowe, then back to Shakespeare, and ultimately stabbed himself in a bar fight when Cervantes insulted Shakespeare (Sir Walter Raleigh) for forgetting Marlowe’s name and walking out on the tab. In fact, during 1593 Christopher Marlowe was nowhere near England; he and his Cambridge buddies were making their annual pilgrimage to Oktoberfest in Munich, where Marlowe was mistaken for Queen Elizabeth and murdered in a bar fight.

Howard Hughes

E – 2. Howard Hughes
It is widely known that this billionaire Texas aviator, inventor, film producer, industrialist, and noted eccentric was deeply involved with a group of Mormons who constituted his “inner circle,” until his reported death on April 5th, 1976. Much has been made of how these manipulative Mormons eventually took control over every aspect of Hughes’s life, including his financial empire and eventually, the entire contents of his shoe closet (Hughes was reduced to wearing empty Kleenex boxes on his feet when his vast array of Gucci loafers were shipped to Salt Lake City for questioning). Hughes remained out of the public eye, and while his official death certificate reflects the April 5th date, Hughes had actually been dead since 1939. The tycoon expired, starving to death after a catastrophic pea-sorting incident in which, over a period of six weeks, he did nothing but arrange and rearrange 8,233,719 green peas according to Planck length.

Described as an “up-and-coming humorist” by Esquire, Tyler Stoddard Smith’s works have been featured in: The McSweeney’s Joke Book of Book Jokes, The Best American Fantasy, Esquire, Meridian, Opium, Pindeldyboz, Identity Theory, Yankee Pot Roast, Word Riot, Barrelhouse, Monkeybicycle, Johnny America and McSweeney’s, among others. He is also a regular contributor at The Nervous Breakdown and edits a political satire Web site, www.demockeracy.com. In addition, he serves as an associate editor of the online humor site, The Big Jewel. Visit his website at http://tylerstoddardsmith.wordpress.com/.

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