Set your sarcasm detectors | Bleader

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Set your sarcasm detectors

Posted By on 11.30.06 at 12:36 PM

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Is this bumper sticker (which apparently still has to be imported from the U.K.) sarcastic or not? Does it depend on the gross weight of the vehicle to which it's attached? (Thanks, Treehugger.)

And here's a glimpse of the world where sarcasm can go entirely undetected: "The November 15 edition of 'The Colbert Report' on Comedy Central offered more proof of comedian Stephen Colbert's ineffective charade at pretending to be a conservative." (Hat tip to Pharyngula, where commenters indulge in a discussion of whether there has been an intentionally funny conservative since Evelyn Waugh. Your thoughts?)

And finally, just for fairness and balance, here's an unbelievably ignorant comment from the liberal side by David Shenk, author of The Immortal Game, published in the Toronto Star and republished at 3 Quarks Daily:

"Q. Do you ever fantasize about teaching chess to some religious fundamentalists?

"A. What a great question. I should actually try to do this some time—just spend time studying how someone who thinks in this fundamentalist way most of the time is also a chess player, because I really see it as a contradiction."

Here I wish he was being saracastic! Having played tournament chess for decades, I can assure Mr. Shenk that strong chess players can hold every imaginable kind of preposterous opinion without damaging their game at all.  George Orwell still rules—he had to make this same point about Ezra Pound, who spoke for fascism and wrote great poetry. Deal with it, folks.

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