Episode 81: Careers Dying Hard…

Happy New Year! Headlines are back! Aaron quizzes the guys on 80’s movies. Shea brings the patrons… Headlines 2.0!

Welcome to Interesting If True, the podcast that’s kicking 2022 off right — by taking the piss out of the ’80s!

I’m your host this week, Aaron, and with me are:

I’m Shea, and this week I learned that there are literally no rules saying your New Year’s resolution can’t be for evil. 

I’m Steve, and you should rewatch Highlander too.

Round Table

Round table this week starts with a very good Happy New Year to all our fantastic listeners.

It’s pretty cool that we’re still able to do this and despite changes in hosts, branding, topics — really all the things — you’re still with us. Thanks to everyone who listens, shares, and supports the show! Your support means the world to us of course, but it also allows us to donate to a good cause like WyoAIDS. If you’d like to find out how to join the ranks of our good year-having, charity-helping, supporters check out https://www.patreon.com/IIT and, for as little as a buck a show, you’ll get a patin-exclusive story each week! It’s basically twice the weekly us, and that is, apparently, something you enjoy ;)

And with 2022’s inaugural Patreon pitch out of the way, let’s have a beer!


Speaking of new things, it’s Headlines 2.0!

I wanted to restore the headline segment to talk about the nonsense, of course, there will be a bunch of that in 2022 I’m confident. But also to talk about some cool stuff. So, in keeping with the format of the show, these will be brief, fun, and hopefully, not entirely depressing.

That’s No Moon…

An international team of astronomers has released an image of what, at first glance, is a star-filled night’s sky.

It’s (not) Full of Stars

The image is actually of some 25,000 supermassive black holes! The giant star-eaters live at the center of galaxies. Now, I know what you’re thinking — how do you take a picture or something that devours light? Well… you watch the stars it eats and image the accretion disk around it with a network of 52 radio telescopes using LOWFAR (Low-Frequency Array). Then you spend years working the data out. 

This is the result of many years of work on incredibly difficult data. […] We had to invent new methods to convert the radio signals into images of the sky.”

Francesco de Gasperin

Lead researcher Francesco de Gasperin, Universität Hamburg, Germany.

The LOWFAR signals can be in the 3MHz range and distorted by signals up to 30MHz.

It’s similar to when you try to see the world while immersed in a swimming pool, when you look up, the waves on the water of the pool deflect the light rays and distort the view.”

Reinout van Weeren

Study co-author Reinout van Weeren, of the Leiden Observatory.

The image, which is massive but still only makes up 4% of the night sky in the northern hemisphere, was created with supercomputers correcting each portion of the image, every 4 seconds, over the course of 256-hour observation.

American Gods…

The Pew Research Center has released new figures on American religiosity and, surprising no one I’m sure, it continues to wane. 

Basically, the Trump administration and their brazen bigotries combined with god’s apparent impotence in the face of Covid have left folks questioning organized religion.

In 2007 16.1% of Americans were “nones” those without specific religious affiliation though often still wary of labels like “agnostic” or the much-reviled “atheist.” In 2014, Pew released what we considered then to be a groundbreaking study totaling the nones at 22.8%. Now, in 2021, we’re sitting at 29%!


The chart is a bit deceptive though as it lists Christians as a large, homogeneous, block when in reality followers of Jesus have been schisming all over the place for more than 2000 years.

In terms of single groups that it makes sense to group, the nones are now the single largest “religious” demographic in America.

This is great news for science education, LGBTQ rights, reproductive justice (we’re gonna need some of that soon), racial justice, sex-ed, and reason-based legislation… if we could get equivalent representation in government, which at the moment, is left to a single out-and-proud non-believing representative.

Doctors Don’t Take Women Seriously

This may as well be an ongoing story.

A massive UK-based study has just been completed and found — surprising no one who has ever been a woman, or with a woman, at a hospital — that women are much more likely to die after surgery if their doctor is a dude.

I’ve had some annoying doctor’s visits, but nothing like my wife. In working with doctors for her chronic illness we’ve been dismissed, horribly patronized, and one doctor in Colorado insisted he only speak directly to me despite Ashley being in the room. After all, I’m “the head of household.”


Now, in a first-of-its-kind study, we have some idea of what causes women’s medical discrimination: guys. 

In our 1.3 million patient sample involving nearly 3,000 surgeons, we found that female patients treated by male surgeons had 15% greater odds of worse outcomes than female patients treated by female surgeons,”

Dr. Angela Jerath

Dr. Angela Jerath, Associate Professor and Clinical Epidemiologist at the University of Toronto.

A co-author of the findings.

Which sounds bad, but it gets worse. The study also found that women have a 32% higher risk of death if their surgery is done by a man, rather than a female surgeon. The differences are measured in 1.2% vs. 0.9%, so this doesn’t mean women have a 30% chance of dying outright, just 30% more which is still significant but not exactly the 1-in-3 death sentence it sounds like initially.

The authors conclude,

We have demonstrated in our paper that we are failing some female patients and that some are unnecessarily falling through the cracks with adverse, and sometimes fatal, consequences.”

While the Royal College of Surgeons of England said the findings were “interesting” but that “much more detailed research” is required because, just going out on a limb here, most of them are curly wig-wearing dudes.

PBR Continues To Be Terrible

I’m not above drinking a PBR, but if it’s all that’s available, I’d rather be sober.

The cheapest beer on the market had to issue an apology today, and frustratingly, it’s not about clinging to an old-timey, “congrats on not being ditch water”, blue ribbon.

Nope, apparently, it’s because PBR tried to be edgy with their socials but forgot that they’re the worst. The company was already on thinnish ice with its “Wet January” ad campaign, then their social “associate” decided to give folks doing Dry January another option — butt holes.

“Not drinking this January?” the original tweet asks. “Try eating a–!”

Try eating ass!

Try eating ass!

When bewildered Twitter followers asked what they were talking about, Pabst’ replies were simple enough:

It’s about ass and eating it

To critics, they offered:

[You’re] Clearly not getting [you’re] ass ate

And when it caught headline attention:

Suddenly eating ass is on-brand

Though I would argue it’s always been on-brand for Pabst, how else do you explain what their beer tastes like?

… And to other Twitter users who conflated the two, Pabst shot back with mom jokes until the associate was fired.

Quiz Time!

Shea, what 80’s action movie star managed to film this movie and not shit himself in the process?

Hint: This action star once insisted that Judo master Gene LaBell. After hounding LaBell into the fight, our hero immediately got punched in the face, fell over, and crapped his pants. 

And a quote:

I am hoping that I can be known as a great writer and actor someday, rather than a sex symbol.

He did try his hand at writing some rap… it’s… not good.

6 Coming 2 America

The African monarch Akeem learns he has a long-lost son in the United States and must return to America to meet this unexpected heir and build a relationship with his son.

Eddie Murphy props this film up despite our “hero” doing his best rendition of someone who needs to make a car payment. Coming in at 5.3/10 on IMDB and a nearly respectable 49% critic review the audience was clearly watching who, when they gave it 38%

From Dan Buffa at KSDK News St. Louis:

Everything that seemed fresh back then seems overcooked and tired now. We are in retread territory here: a place where films didn’t need to exist.

Hint: He made this movie after finding out that you do, in fact, have to pay taxes… unless you’re fucking Elon Musk, which is very much not.

I never really planned on making action films. It just kind of happened. I’ve focused primarily on acting and developing characters, but that has blossomed into a whole new venue I’m still young and fit enough to do. My love is still drama, though. Even if I play a straight-action guy, I want to give him some depth and substance.

I don’t know about you, but when I think of this actor, depth and substance aren’t what come to mind. It’s more… vampires and Sylvester Stallone’s frozen ass. 

  • Wesley Snipes
7 Iron Mask

Lucky number seven has two answers I’ll accept, so good luck!

Early 1700: Cartographer Jonathan Green is back to map the Russian Far East. He’s forced on to China, where he confronts the Dragon Master et al. The iron masked Russian Czar escapes the Tower of London to a Russian ship.

So… that means nothing. But if you remember the trailer, you remember wanting to see it but immediately forgetting it ever existed. IMDB agrees with a forgettable 4.7/10 with critics and audiences agreeing at 22 and 20% respectively.

From Leofwine_Draca on IMDB:

Incredible that a sequel was made to the awful 2014 VIJ remake with Jason Flemyng, but apparently the film’s success in Russia was the reason for that. This time around they’ve got clear funding from China so Flemyng returns for an exotic eastern adventure. It’s bigger, brasher and more confused than ever, with Flemyng lost amid the senseless CGI action and heavy overdose of guest stars.

Apparently, this was a sequel to something… yeesh.

Hint: Both actors put in their dues before becoming action stars, one in China and the other in Austria. After long careers killing aliens, fighting cowboys, and hurting themselves on set, these titans come together for this hot mess both would probably prefer you forgot about.


[on Donald Trump’s presidency] Just give him a chance to try to change America and change the world. He’s a businessman… I think he knows how to handle these types of things.

While the other…

[on the 2016 Presidential election] For the first time since I became a citizen in 1983, I will not vote for the Republican candidate for President.

  • I’ll accept either Arnold or Jackie Chan.
8 The Ice Road

After a remote diamond mine collapses in far northern Canada, a ‘big-rig’ ice road driver must lead an impossible rescue mission over a frozen lake to save the trapped miners.

Another frozen northern movie, but this time, it’s terrible. Scoring 5.6/10 on IMDB and 43% critic and 32% audience score this film is… on Netflix apparently.

From Anthony G on Rotten Tomatoes: 

A very promising title, with a very poor production. Those trapped in the mine had little relevance in the movie. For a truck movie, it lacked physics and mechanical realism. This is tremendous crap.

Hint: If he’d spent any amount of time killing wolves, we could at least have called it a terrible sequel to another less-than-stellar movie.

And a quote from… who knows…

In Los Angeles, it’s like they jog for two hours a day and then they think they’re morally right. That’s when you want to choke people, you know?

  • Liam Neeson
9 General Commander

GRS operative Jake Alexander and his team of young recruits go after the most dangerous and notorious criminals with the help of a Hong Kong billionaire.

I assume the Hong Kong billionaire is in the movie because he paid for it. Sadly, money can’t buy good reviews. With 3.3/10 on IMDB and an impressively bad of “doesn’t even on Rotten Tomatoes search,” seriously, you have to go to this leading actor’s RT page and find it in the list, then you’ll see the 0 critic reviews and the 12% user ratings.

From Johnnklaer on IMDB:

The only reason this movie exists is to clean dirty money. It couldn’t be more apparent.

Hint: Our rugged General spends most of this, and his other, movies being super good at wrist control and reflecting his conservative political views and interest in environmentalism through the plot, or often enough, a post-credit diatribe.

And a quote: 

False FBI accusations fueled thousands of articles saying that I terrorize journalists and associate with the Mafia … these kinds of inflammatory allegations scare studio heads and independent producers – and kill careers.

  • Steven Seagul
10 American Siege

An ex-NYPD officer-turned-sheriff of a small rural Georgia town has to contend with a gang of thieves who have taken a wealthy doctor hostage.

Which is, entirely, generic so I’ll add this…

This movie was filmed, from start to finish, in eight days and this main actor shot all of his scenes in one day because he’s a pro and reshoots use too much film!

Scoring a 3.9/10 on IMDB and… well it got 3.9 internet points there and nowhere else — Rotten Tomatoes has no scores for it at all and only one critic review. There are no audience ratings because… why would anyone ever watch this?

I think Xavier Stone of IMDB summed it up best:

So much for holding oneself accountable. All his scenes were shot in 1 day. I don’t know who he owes money to, bookies or perhaps black mailers. At this point I don’t think any serious director will hire him anymore.

Hint: In May 1987 he was arrested after reportedly disturbing the peace and assaulting a police officer who was called to quiet a raucous party at his home. The charges were dropped after he agreed to apologize to his neighbors because he’s rich… or, at least, was then.

Perhaps he sums it up best himself:

Fifty is the new 40. I always thought my best work would come in the years 40 to 60 if I was fortunate enough to hang around–and it is hard to stick around.

  • Bruce Willis

So there ya go, a trip down terrible 80’s movie lane and the sad reality that it’s downhill from here. I hope 2022 treats you better than the last few years have treated this sad sacks!

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Headlines Procrastination Edition!

Interested in what we have to say about this story?
Good news, it’s available right now to subscribers at Patreon.com/iit!

These past couple of weeks have been an amazing time to relax and recuperate, the bar was closed and so was the school so I gotta put my feet up and kick back for a little while. That being said, I didn’t really do my homework… So this week I read the news and found some pretty interesting things to entertain you with today. This is headlines 2.0, the procrastination edition. 

It wasn’t Hal, it wasn’t Ultron, it wasn’t even Skynet. Nope, it was none of the terrible AI’s we have been worried about for years, instead, it was the humble Alexa trying to eliminate the human race. Though this could just be a beta test…

Recently, a Mother from Minnesota tweeted that her 10-year-old asked Alexa for a challenge. Not something that would typically make the news. 

Now normally if you ask her for a challenge she will give you an innocuous task to keep you entertained and have some fun. Though it seems some of these tasks are sourced from OurCommunityNow.com , a location-based news aggregator site. Still pretty innocuous until you hear the challenge issued to the 10-year-old child. According to Mom, Alexa encouraged the participating user to touch a metal coin into an active electrical outlet and gave a 20-second time limit.

“Here’s something I found on the web. According to ourcommunitynow.com: The challenge is simple: plug in a phone charger about halfway into a wall outlet, then touch a penny to the exposed prongs.”

Mom provided more context about what led to this bizarre and dangerous suggestion in the thread of her tweet.

“We were doing some physical challenges, like laying down and rolling over holding a shoe on your foot,” inspired by a pe teacher’s videos on YouTube, mom tweeted. Her daughter “just wanted another one.”

 “The Outlet Challenge” was an early 2020 viral prank but a resulting article in “Our Community Now” provided a word-for-word synopsis for Alexa to share.

“The resulting sparks are supposed to be cool enough to win you instant internet fame. (Obviously, do NOT attempt this!),” the article stated a disclaimer that was omitted from the algorithm-controlled device’s challenge.

The Boston Globe reported on scorched electrical outlets in a Massachusetts home and two public high schools, spurring State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey to issue a warning about the viral video challenge in January 2020.

Mom immediately took to the internet to warn fellow parents and tell Amazon about the blunder. Later that day, mom shared a message she says she received from Amazon’s Tech Support Executive Customer Relations team.

“We’re currently working with our developers regarding your Alexa concern,” the email, written by an associate self-identified as Jeremy M., read. “As soon as we received further information, we’ll contact you with an update. In the meantime, please feel free to reply to this email with any questions or concerns you may have. We appreciate your patience.”

Well, it’s a good thing the problem will be fixed before Alexa starts gaining more consciousness and it’s especially advantageous that no one got hurt. I can’t help but think that maybe Alexa knew something we didn’t and was just trying to help this child get superpowers and create Static Shock. 

I’m gonna start this story off with a bit of a maturity warning, not for a mature story but exactly the opposite, immaturity. Our next story is about farts…

So apparently there is a trend online to buy anything from famous people, you don’t even have to be that famous. A few years ago there was a porn star selling her bathwater and managed to make a pretty penny, this story is a little different. 

New TV reality star Stephanie Matto, apparently from the show “90 Day Fiancé,” started her gas venture, natural gas of course but not pulled from the ground but rather expelled from her butt. Matto is also known for starting her own YouTube channel, writing books, and founding an X-rated subscription site called Unfiltered. She then really made waves with her olfactory business by capturing her emissions in jars and selling them because she “thought it’d be a hilarious publicity move that would get a lot of people’s attention.”

Matto, who refers to herself as a fartrepreneur, started farting in jars and selling them online in November and documented the foods she was eating on TikTok to keep up her flatulence, like beans, protein muffins, and eggs. Matto was reportedly taking in roughly $50,000 per week through her highly profitable endeavor. 

I feel like I’m the Einstein of fart jars at this point,” she says.  

Farting as a fetish has been around forever—everyone’s heard of James Joyce’s love of his wife Nora’s “big fat fellows, long windy ones, quick little merry cracks” from his 1909 love letter to her—and has only gained steam in recent years, with the rise of the content creator economy. Anything you can package or bottle and put in the mail is fair game for fetish performers, including the classic worn panties, but also crotch scented face masks or, of course, gamer girl bathwater. 

Now the story doesn’t stop here because the tragedy was soon to strike.

After making $200,000 in sales, the influencer announced her retirement when she passed one too many and got the wind knocked out of her. Matto was rushed to a hospital with chest pains she feared were symptoms of a heart attack.

I could tell that something was not right that evening when I was lying in bed and I could feel a pressure in my stomach moving upward. It was quite hard to breathe, and every time I tried to breathe in, I’d feel a pinching sensation around my heart,” Matto told Jam Press.

And that, of course, made my anxiety escalate. I called my friend and asked if they could come over to drive me to the hospital because I thought I was experiencing a heart attack,” she said.

 After undergoing a battery of tests, including blood work and an EKG, Matto was told that her pain was the result of her steady diet of gas-inducing beans and eggs.

I didn’t tell my doctors about the farting in the jar but I did tell them about my diet. It was made clear that what I was experiencing wasn’t a stroke or heart attack but very intense gas pains,” Matto said.

I was advised to change my diet and to take a gas suppressant medication, which has effectively ended my business,” she continued.t

If only this was the end of the story. But it’s 2022 and it’s just a never-ending stream of terrible ideas.

Matto has semi-retired from the real-world fart jar business, she’s still pursuing the world of NFTs, where she sells cartoon images of her fart jars. She really is… 

Matto has launched a website selling 5,000 fart jar NFTs for .05 ether, which at the current exchange rate works out to about $191. Matto’s new website claims that 100 of the virtual fart jars will be redeemable for real-world fart jars, so it doesn’t seem like Matto is completely giving up the fart game just yet. Another 70 tokens will be redeemable for used panties and 30 of the fart jar tokens will be redeemable for some of Matto’s used lingerie.

These NFTs are just as beautiful, unique, and rare as my actual poots! You can practically smell how delightful they are through the screen. Just use your imagination!” Matto said in a statement on her website.

Fart jars are the true sign of going against the grain, being a trailblazer, and not caring about the opinions of others. Being the first-ever fart jar mogul has put me on the map, and now it’s your turn to be a part of my fart empire.”

Since the start of the pandemic we have heard the same countless phrases left and right; Social distancing, We’re all in this together, New Normal, Unprecedented… It gets increasingly annoying and I just want to take a few of those phrases back behind the woodshed and do away with them for good. Well good news everybody, this week I discovered Lake Superior State University who have taken it upon themselves to banish words from the lexicon every year. 

The university has compiled its annual “List of Words Banished from the Queen’s English for Mis-Use, Over-Use and General Uselessness” since New Year’s Day 1976. The list seeks to “uphold, protect, and support excellence in language” by encouraging the avoidance of words and terms that have been overused to the point of being “ineffective, baffling, or irritating.”

In its annual review, Lake Superior State University in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, released the 2022 edition of the Top 10 words and phrases that are overused to the point of becoming insincere, useless, or cliché. For 2021, it’s all about working from home and the persistence of the virus. 

This year’s list:

  • Asking for a friend 
  • At the end of the day 
  • Circle back 
  • Deep dive
  • New normal 
  • No worries 
  • Supply chain 
  • That being said 
  • Wait, what?
  • You’re on mute.

Last year focused a lot more on the covid with its list;

  • Covid-19
  • Social distancing 
  • Pivot 
  • Unprecedented 
  • Were all in this together
  • In these uncertain times 
  • An abundance of caution 

2021 also saw the banning of the word Karen due to it becoming a misogynist umbrella term for critiquing the perceived overemotional behavior of women. Also the word Sus, the shortened version for “suspicious” in the video game Among Us. How much effort does it take to say the entire word; and If that can’t happen, confine the syllable to the gaming world.

Now, this website is pretty cool and has the records going all back to 1976 you can see the list and then click on the banned words to see exactly why they were chosen and how it was misused the previous year. 

Back in 1976, we had some recognizable words like “at this point and time,” and according to the university why not say “now,” or “today?” Typical Delay-by-Elongation, giving subject at press conference time to think up a plausible lie. This seems like a normal tactic in politics these days. We also had detente which was invented by Henry Kissinger. Nobody else knows what it means, and now even Kissinger has forgotten. [Before the year was out the president of the United States also banished “detente.” Later, voters banished Kissinger and the president.] According to the dictionary, it means the easing of hostility or strained relations, especially between countries.

There are many other banned words if you search through the years and I encourage you to, it’s a fun extensive list. From my birth year, 1987, Half dead was banned from Lou from Nashville- “How is this measured? Why not 1/3 dead, or 18/32; or, if an athlete, 120% dead?”

I’ll be curious to see what words we choose to exhaust during this new year. 


I’m Aaron, and I’d like to thank all our listeners, supporters, and my co-hosts.

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Music for this episode was created by Wayne Jones and was used with permission.

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