Scott, To Be Certain


Thursday, July 26, 2007

Gravity's Child

Naturally, seeing someone injure themselves is almost always funny. But there's virtually nothing more enjoyable than merely watching someone fall.

"Are you referring to my acting and music career"

The Germans cottoned on to this simple pleasure centuries ago, inventing a specific word for it: schadenfreude. Its broad meaning can be roughly translated as "to take delight in someone else's misfortune". Toni Pearen's current "career", on a weekly basis, depends entirely on this notion.

The enjoyment is redoubled when someone who is ordinarily renowned for their style and poise, or whose public status usually requires some semblance of ongoing verticality, trips up hopelessly.

Hence our joy when hideously thin, immensely unlikeable Rachel Smith, Miss USA, tenderised her tush in front of 1 billion people at this year's Miss Universe pageant:

Or when our wretched Prime Minister this week nearly nuked his own noggin:

One of the best examples of a genuinely laughter-inducing fall is in a choreographed group scenario, where a slip up potentially derails others.

Michelle Williams, the rodent-voiced and least famous Destiny's Child member, experienced this first hand a couple of years ago. However, while Kelly (dressed as Beyoncé's Goldmember character) seems briefly concerned by her bandmate's nosedive, Beyoncé is seized by sheer schadenfreude and carries on with an almost visible delight:

And frankly, who can blame her.

But another linguistically foreign notion this week delivered a delayed riposte to Beyoncé: karma.

Enjoy the following:


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