Scott, To Be Certain


Friday, March 07, 2008

Martina Apparently Still Likes To Hit It

As we all know, Martina Hingis departed the sport of tennis in a flourish of ignominy late last year when it was revealed that she was rather partial to hitting the lines off-court as well as on.

"That 'snow' is taunting me so I refuse to view it"

But after just a matter of a few months it seems she's very quickly recovered from her forced retirement (by virtue of a two-year ban for a positive cocaine test), if this news report is anything to go by.

No word of a lie: Martina is returning to competitive tennis. In Liverpool!

"I'm so excited I fashioned a shirt from my mum's old purse"

Martina is scheduled to play the Liverpool invitational tournament in preparation for Wimbledon this year, because the tournament isn't subject to her tour ban.

The corker in this whole situation is that she's so pumped for her return to match play that she's manufactured a rather hilarious PR spin to the event.

Please fill in the missing word to this legitimate Martina quote.

I am very much looking forward to playing the event and to visit all the things that have made Liverpool the European capital of C_ _ _ _ _ _ ."

Believe it or not, but the missing word is CULTURE.


Martina, any hope you ever had of exonerating yourself from the dreadful slur now inextricably associated with your name is lost forever following this claim which can only be explained by reference to drugs.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Céline Dion: Not Adept At Swallowing

There have been many excellent comedy videos doing the YouTube circuit of late, each employing a clever brand of scripted humour to send half the world into hospital with laughter-induced injuries.

The suite of genius Brenda Dickson parodies, the inspired Sarah Silverman and Jimmy Kimmel videos (satirising their imaginary fuck-buddy relationships with Matt Damon and Ben Affleck respectively), and Mariah Carey's ridiculous new cip for her Samantha Fox/Tina Arena mash-up single "Touch My Body" (in which she appears now to own the hacienda from which she so expertly escaped in 1997's literally and figuratively seminal "Honey") are all fine examples of deliberate hilarity.

Yet, however side-splitting, these intelligent, carefully staged comic moments are no match for the less common but doubly impressive brand of unintentional comedy.

To this end, I bring to you below the sheer genius of Céline Dion.

The destitute Canadian songstress donated $US1m to the Hurricane Katrina relief effort in 2005 during a televised interview with Larry King. What was notable about the interview was that Céline, who experiences human emotion more acutely than anyone in history, virtually collapses from sadness during discussions about the devastation in the affected areas.

What could possibly be funny about this, you ask? Certainly, it is now very clear that the government response to the disaster was indeed woefully inadequate, and the level of human suffering was indeed unacceptable.

But Céline's particular phraseology, her endearing ESL English, and the uniqueness of a megastar imploding on camera make this indescribably memorable viewing. Please note that the video below has been innovatively doctored in certain obvious respects by one enthusiastic viewer, but the interview is otherwise entirely genuine.


Since there is, in fact, such a multitude of wonderful moments in this video, I have constructed the following survey. Please participate and select your favourites (you can choose more than one).

To witness the extent to which this video has inspired the world, please also view this mini-gem:

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Suicide And Other Pursuits Preferable To Psychometric Testing

In this complex tableau we call 'life', we are every so often struck by moments of sheer clarity, moments so beautiful in their simplicity and directness that for a brief time the rest of the world falls away.

Yesterday, I had one of those moments. It was during a psychometric numerical reasoning test, when I was overcome by a virtually irresistible compulsion to drive the two pencils before me straight through my eyeballs with as much brute force and speed as possible.

OMG where can I find one of these

For those of you who are unaware, S2BC is to the fullest extent practicable a numbers-free zone - with the exception, of course, of the S2BC countdowns, the most recent of which (the Idol Top 20) is to be completed very shortly. ("We're not remotely convinced by that" - The World)

This is because I am in every imaginable way the most innumerate thinker on the planet. I can calculate sums reasonably swiftly and accurately, but anything beyond that is legitimately nausea-inducing for me. The Financial Review makes me nervous and queasy, Excel spreadsheets make me want to throw up and the moment the business report begins during the nightly news is precisely when I mentally retreat into my own private world of carousels and circus music.

Now I don't know what I was expecting before commencing this psychometric testing. Realistically, despite having some cursory prior experience with such testing, I believe I was clinging against my better judgment to the hope that the test might feature my preferred type of intellectual questioning along the lines of 'identify the next number in this sequence' or 'which of these shapes does not belong'.

Instead, there was something like this:

Followed by question:

"In year 3, half of the value of the gain made in Fund A was derived from monies that had been transferred from Fund C. What would the value of Fund C have been if some ugly but enormously endowed woman began breastfeeding her puppy while riding a unicycle?"

Or something similar. That is a rough approximation of my capacity for concentration when presented with numerical data: I immediately escape into a world of amusing unlikelihoods, while the numbers themselves dance around the page, laughing hysterically and sardonically at my malaise.

As an amusing post-script, and speaking of unlikelihoods: I passed the test. I didn't scoop my eyes out with a pencil, and the relevant prospective employer generously "invited" me for a further interview. But by this time I had tired of them and their stupid fucking test so I declined.

I am now miraculously employed by an institution that saw fit not to include psychometric testing in its recruitment. In future, I will not partake in any such form of testing, unless it contains something like this:

Now that's a test we'd all enjoy, is it not?