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I have been ruined by the Internet. I was exposed to the dark and musky depths of its depravity too young. The Internet crawled inside me and laid eggs. Those eggs hatched and birthed terrible proclivities that slowly devoured the better parts of my brain until all that was left was a filthy layer of reeking cynicism. One of the many horrible side effects of this ruination is that it now takes a lot to make me laugh. And sometimes what does the trick is horrifically dark and disturbing stuff that should in no way cause a human being to giggle. I am not telling you it is right that I laugh at these things. I am not saying they are objectively funny to any other sensible human being. I am not seeking forgiveness. I am just showing them to you so that when the time comes, nobody will say "He seemed like such a nice man. We had no warning."

Listen, I'm most likely going to lose my job over this, and I will almost certainly deserve it, so maybe just ... go. Just go before it's too late for all of us. Oh God, it's starting, remember me as a better man than I actually was-

5
Quote from Man Stabbed: "What Are You Gonna Do, Stab Me?"

LA Weekly

"Now that you mention it," responds the assailant.

Oh thank God. Thank God the victim in question survived and I don't have to live with the psychic burden of laughing at a fatality. I mean, hopefully he lived and made a full recovery and possibly learned a valuable lesson about the place of skepticism in gang warfare. But at the very least, he lived.

Here's what really gets me:

The headline on the actual news story is nothing special. It's about what you'd expect: "Man Stabbed in the Throat in East Spokane." That's not funny. That's terrible, and I'm sorry it happened to anybody. If you gain any amount of joy from that information, well, hopefully you look like Christian Bale so your psychosis is a bit easier for the audience to swallow.

But that's not the text that the local TV news went with. No, the guy in charge of those pointless info-dumps on your local TV news delved into the depressing details of a knife attack, and he came back up with poetry. You know he wrote it that way on purpose. There are a million ways to phrase the events that transpired that aren't funny in the slightest -- "The victim did not believe the threat was real and questioned his attacker's intent" -- and only one way to phrase it that is funny:

QUOTE FROM MAN STABBED: "WHAT ARE YOU GONNA DO, STAB ME?"

That was some next level shit, slide writer for the local TV news. I hope that as soon as you finished typing that headline, you leveled up out of that job like a Final Fantasy character and went on to write for SNL or something.

Also, let's not overlook the real hero here: the victim. Sure, it's stupid in retrospect, but bravo to the man who saw an assailant wielding a deadly weapon and had the balls to dare him to use it. I mean, when a guy comes at you with a knife and you essentially say "You're not gonna stab me, pussy," what choice does that guy have? What exits have you left him? Maybe he wasn't going to stab you before, but he pretty much has to now.

4
Man Drives Car into Church, Beats Pastor to Death With Electric Guitar

There is nothing funny about the loss of a good man's life, and that is indeed what happened here. But if you remove all the tragedy, all the stuff that relies on having normal human emotions -- if you pulled the very horrible reality out of this story and had it take place in, say, the next Saint's Row game or a Nic Cage movie -- it's the most ridiculously metal murder that has ever taken place.

Imagine none of it is real and you're just a bodiless point of view, watching events happen to entirely fictional characters from a third-person perspective. It's a quiet Sunday on a friendly suburban street. A car whips by, loses control, and slams into the side of a church. Before you can even react, the door opens and what I am forced to assume is a naked man wearing a Viking hat leaps out of the driver's side and sprints into the church clutching a bright red guitar. From inside, a series of twangy off-beat chords. Your viewpoint cuts away to a headline that simply reads:

MAN DRIVES CAR INTO CHURCH, BEATS PASTOR TO DEATH WITH ELECTRIC GUITAR

Do you laugh? God, I'm sorry, but I did.

Not necessarily because guitar beatings are funny, but the whole scenario from start to finish is just so unexpected. There are so many questions, and none of the answers help. I mean, obviously, there's "Why?" And "Seriously, what?" But then there are the less obvious queries, like: Did he bring the guitar with him? Or did he just sprint into church, lay eyes on an inexplicable electric guitar sitting on the altar, and say, "Yes, the ax is my weapon of choice"?

The news story says "The attack moved inside the music room," so it's probably the latter, but is that better, or worse?

I don't know. All I know is that every time I click on this article, I expect to see the album cover from Meatloaf's Bat Out of Hell, and there's a part of me that's a little let down when I don't find it.

Wikipedia

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3
Man Revenge Rapes Son's Rapist

Nope.

Not even touching this one.

Moving on.

2
Rapper Tweets "YOLO," Immediately Dies in Drunken Driving Accident

Huffington Post

Here's the text of this story:

Ervin McKinness, a 21-year-old aspiring rapper, tweeted about driving drunk at 120 mph minutes before dying in a fiery one-car crash that killed the rapper and four others.

Tweets:

Drunk af going 120 drifting corners #FuckIt YOLO

Driving tweeting sipping the cup f*** yolo I'm turning it up

I'm admitting to a lot of terrible stuff in this column. Things I really probably should never admit to another human being -- not even to a stranger in a drunken stupor at a dive bar in the bad part of town -- and here I am posting it on the Internet. I don't know why. I'm having a minor stroke, I suspect. But in the interest of continued honesty: I don't actually feel bad for laughing at this story. I keep trying to. I keep trying to analyze the events objectively. An ignorant young man makes some mistakes while under the influence and pays for it with his life. It's a tragedy. Right?

... right?

I read that headline and I see an idiot hollering "YOLO" out the window of his frat right before he jumps into a pile of garbage cans, as though the willful ignorance of consequences will serve as some sort of metaphysical barrier to keep them at bay. I see an idiot posting about his crimes on Twitter in a dire effort to impress somebody with a SpongeBob avatar. I see an idiot proudly drinking while driving (in this case, not the same guy texting, like that makes the slightest bit of difference). I see all of those idiots combined together like a Megazord of idiocy, and my sympathy just ... calls in sick.

I don't think the dude deserved it or anything. I don't wish harm on stupid people or rejoice in the harm that comes upon them, but I've searched all over for a way to feel bad for him, and I just can't find it.

Maybe it's under the couch.

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1
Teenager Trying to Retrieve His Hat Has Head Punted Off by Batman Roller Coaster

Joyrides

The story:

A teenager was decapitated by an amusement park ride at Six Flags Over Georgia, after he hopped a pair of fences and entered a restricted area to retrieve a hat he lost while riding the Batman roller coaster.

You probably don't need to hear this disclaimer again. It's probably not going to help anybody's opinion of me at this point. I'm sure the black helicopters are already on their way. But it's worth repeating that I don't find anything funny about tragedy or loss of life in general.

But man, if you're gonna go ...

Listen: You could die at any moment. You could die in a car crash. You could die of an aneurysm, right now, reading this stupid sentence. You might have cancer growing inside of you at this very second. Or maybe you're just going to get up from your computer, trip over your cat, and bash your brains in on your shoe rack. Death can happen at any time, and most likely yours is going to be boring or pointless, and although folks will be sad, nobody will ultimately find anything particularly notable about it.

Or you could get your head punted off by fucking Batman.

If you absolutely had to choose, which way would you go?

I'm saying, when you get up to the pearly gates and they ask how you died, "shoe rack" may get some condolences, but "I got my head punted off by a Batman roller coaster" is getting you a high-five and a "nice" from Saint Peter.

Read more from Brockway at his own monument to narcissism/website, The Brock Way. Follow him on Goodreads, Twitter, Tumblr, and Facebook.

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