Comedian Steve Rannazzisi at an unknown event. Where could he be?
Buffalo Wild Wings pitchman and star of FXX’s The League Steve Rannazzisi has admitted he lied about escaping the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. The good news is he’s even more famous now. The bad news is he’s famous for saying he was working at Merrill Lynch in the south tower when a plane hit the north, when in fact Merrill Lynch had no office in either tower, and Rannazzisi was working in midtown for somebody else. Previously, he was best known for the following joke:
Rannazzisi: Knock knock!
Audience: Who’s there?
Rannazzisi: Steve Rannazzisi—I’ve just escaped from a horrible tragedy. You’ve got to let me in to your living room on Wednesdays at 10pm!
Audience: We don’t have FXX.
But now he’s a liar, and we hate him. Or we love him because he told the truth about lying? Consideration after the jump.
Saddam Hussein was not technically involved in 9/11, but you know he liked it.
“It was unquestionably the most terrible day of our age,” begins a News.com.au article headlined 30 pictures of 9/11 that show you why you should never forget. Fourteen years after I noticed the World Trade Center was on fire on my way to work, it’s still impossible to listen to other people talk about it. September 11th changed all our lives forever, according to a bunch of people who saw it on the news. Unquestionably, it was the most terrible day of our age, says an uncredited photo aggregator who was not at Hiroshima. Never forget, say people who remember where they were when they heard that a plane hit the World Trade Center, and it wasn’t lower Manhattan. Today is Friday, and events don’t have to happen to you to affect you deeply. It’s probably better they don’t. Won’t you survey tragedy from a safe remove with me?
A great place to make yourself an unimpeachable spectacle of grief
I am officially not a New Yorker anymore, since A) I don’t live there and B) the city has added a tourist attraction since I left. The Astor Place Building was bad enough, but now that the 9/11 memorial is finished I have to accept that my mental map of the city is not only imprecise, like a dream, but inaccurate, like the dream where Catherine Keener says I’m pretty. It’s fitting that it should happen this way. The September 11th attacks—more specifically, the baffling torrent of people who did not live in the city on September 11, 2001 but still consider 9/11 a personal tragedy—were what made me feel like a New Yorker in the first place. The feeling is an odd mixture of loyalty and cynicism, which you can simulate for yourself after the jump by reading a quote from this New York Times article.
Sarah Palin, seen here monopolizing a city council meeting in A Just World.
Yesterday, Sarah Palin risked the loyalty of her constituents by announcing her opposition to a planned mosque at Ground Zero, via Twitter. She’s since deleted that post, for reasons the foregoing article makes obvious, but here’s her original tweet:
Ground Zero Mosque supporters: doesn’t it stab you in the heart, as it does ours throughout the heartland? Peaceful Muslims, pls refudiate.
“Refudiate” is, of course, not a word. It seems to be a concatenation of “refute” and “repudiate,” or just a one-letter typo, although Palin’s subsequent defense (see below) suggests the former. The commentariat regards her use of “refudiate” as a gaffe, and they’re having a pretty good time with it. As is often the case, though, Palin is stupid like a fox. It’s a good thing “refudiate” is in that tweet, because it distracts from the rest of it—and you know what that means. When meaning tries to hide behind language, and also when the Combat! blog headline has “close reading” in it, it’s time for another Close Reading.