Things that are objectively, quantifiably badass: explosions, motorcycles, fighter jets, Steve McQueen and punching a bear with another, smaller bear -- like wearing little sun-bear boxing gloves to do battle with a grizzly. There are many things that did not make the Badass List: mayonnaise, John Mayer, going to bed early on Sunday because you've had a long weekend antiquing with the in-laws. "Going for a nice walk" sure seems like it belongs in the second category, but there are a few rare exceptions. Like these guys, whose every step inspires no less than six bitchin' guitar solos and one training montage wherein a starry-eyed young lad learns karate.
The world is gone. The great works of man -- his presumptuous buildings and arrogant roads -- lie in utter devastation. All around, the people despair. You can see them there, in the background, just despairing it up. Those little brown shapes way back there, all lamenting and wailing and probably even forlorning (time permitting).
But you have to look pretty hard to see them beyond the immaculate white coat, ivory bottles, gentle smile and shining, pristine haircut of the milkman gingerly picking his way through the fucking Blitz. Look there, to his right:
See those guys? They're not just milling about. They're holding a hose between them, and that's steam shooting up from just off camera. Either those two are soldiers who've given up hope and figure they're going to die as they lived -- playing in a sprinkler -- or else those are firemen putting out the flames from the bombing raid that literally just happened. It's the latter, of course: This wreckage wasn't sitting there for days, giving the jaded milkman time to get over the destruction of society. The world blew up right in front of him, and he said "Pardon me" and politely stepped around the apocalypse, because somebody, somewhere, was about to open a box of cereal and he had a goddamn job to do.
Either somebody's got some weird mods installed in their Fallout game, or this is Somalia.
This is Mogadishu, to be precise, where the men are men and the sharks are fashion accessories. The guy in the blue-and-yellow polo is willing to muss up his only nice shirt for two things: wrestling an intact Bryan Adams CD away from the other pirates (dude's huge in Somalia; nobody really knows why. Maybe it's because life's not much worth living there anyway, so, you know, fuck it: Bryan Adams), and of course, to fire-carry an apex predator through what looks like a Mad Max sequel.
There's kind of an explanation for this: The reason piracy is so big in Somalia is that their navy collapsed, which foreign corporations took as license to do whatever the hell they wanted. They illegally overfished Somali waters and began dumping toxic waste in the oceans (another theory for the strange abundance of Waking Up the Neighbours). But since the Somali pirates started keelhauling the ever-loving crap out of the Gorton's Fisherman, people mostly leave their waters alone. Unsupervised and unsanctioned, the people are free to catch and eat whatever they damn well please.
But surely a man wearing a full-sized, wholly intact shark like a winter scarf is not a common thing. It's not like everybody in the Somali capital is strolling about town with the ocean's greatest predator about their necks like a jaunty little asco-
That's Teddy Roosevelt, 26th president of the United States, and Cracked's position on the man is pretty clear: He's somewhere between a Chuck Norris joke and the Messiah. Everything he did was the most badass anything anybody has ever done. His softest chuckle was the most badass metal album ever recorded; his gentlest crap was the most badass POW escape in history. He gets whatever spot he wants on whatever list he likes because we're sure not going to fucking stop him.
Do you blame us? Look at that magnificent bastard up there. It's like somebody crossbred a walrus with the spirit of war. He makes a top hat and coattails look like the battlemech from Aliens. And now look at the rest of the picture. Notice anything strange? Nobody's even walking in the same direction as the president. In fact, it looks as if they may all be fleeing in fear ...
Either that guy is intensely terrified of Roosevelt's ass (we wouldn't blame him), or Mothra surfaced just out of frame. And while the general populace panicked and fled, Teddy saw the gargantuan flying murder-beast and merely recalled that he hadn't had breakfast yet.