Posts Tagged ‘racism’

Dick In Squash: A Young Adult Novel


Just in time to qualify for Book of the Decade (BOTD), TEETH – The Epic Novel With Bite has been released. Is it any good? I have no idea; I haven’t read it. I’m mainly sharing this because of the wonderful marketing campaign behind the book. Please check out the website and watch the video.

It’s weird, right? There’s a huge banner for a half a million dollar TV show even though the page is supposed to be advertising a novel. And then the video rambles on about dolphins and Christopher Reeve and a picture of a crocodile this guy found. Although I’d probably be name dropping Superman every day if I had met him.


The story itself is so creative that it’s borderline yeasty. Johhny Willman, an American soldier who loves baseball and apple pie, is trapped in the jungles of New Guinea during World War II with a Japanese POW and an Australian guide named Footy. Together, this unlikely trio will learn the value of friendship as they murder a giant crocodile. It gets better: the Japanese guy is named Katsu — which is an expletive, FYI — and his only possession is a samurai sword. How could this book possibly be bad with a setup like that? Let’s examine an excerpt:

Five more Negroid warriors step from the jungle. These look so different than their victim, they might almost be a different species. Their facial features are broad, and their bodies shine coal-black. Patterns in red, white and yellow mark their faces, torsos and thighs. Through their noses are paired pig tusks, turned up towards the eyes, signifying war. Floating over them are headdresses of white egret feathers, incongruous in their delicate beauty. These men carry longbows, but with arrows of the kind for killing men. Some carry stone-headed axes and cudgels. They, too, are naked but for their penis gourds, but these are yellow and long, leave the testes exposed, and curl in outlandish shapes.

Pro Writer Tip:  unless you’re a forensic archeologist, Negroid is not a word you should throw around a lot.  Same goes for the phrase “penis gourds,” which seem to be central to the theme of the book.



This dude has a bit of a hangup when it comes to cock melons. Seriously, they’re mentioned all over the place. I’m guessing that spending his youth in New Guinea and seeing all those huge native sholnsons on display, emphasized by oversized codpieces, left a slight impression on the author. I’m also curious about his liberal usage of the word “jap” in this Amazon video review (of his own book), and his description of New Guinea’s native Austronesians as “bloodthirsty savages.” Is “savage” still in use? Isn’t that a stereotype that Jack London used? Like, a hundred years ago?

I can’t wait for all of this teasing to come back around when I write my book on bad books.


And yet “WASP” produces some sort of insect

Scribblenauts is a game that manifests objects from the player’s input. You write a noun, it creates that noun with all the expected properties. Want a dinosaur to fight a vampire? Then write dinosaur and vampire. They will fight. It’s as awesome as it sounds.

I was messing around with the game today, trying to produce intangible elements (love, art, etc). I tried samba, but accidentally mistyped it as sambs. The game popped up it’s helpful “Did You Mean…?” dialog.

The first option was Sambo.

Okay, that’s weird, right? There’s no way the game would contain an ethnic slur. I figured it also meant something else that I wasn’t familiar with, so I clicked this check box to make it real.

2009-09-16 19.50.13

It made a goddamn watermelon. Which, FYI, is a pretty iffy connection.

What the hell were 5th Cell, the developers, thinking here? Lucas Rizoli suggested via Twitter that maybe it was a subtle allusion to Sambo brand watermelon… which is still frickin’ Sambo brand watermelon. There’s a logical explanation for this, I’m sure. I’m just hoping that it’s not “Someone hid a racist term in our game.”

UPDATED TO ADD: Actual media outlets (with credibility and all that stuff) have gotten a response from 5th Cell, stating that a “sambo” is another name for a type of ecudoran gourd that resembles a watermelon.  Ian Bogost has written an interesting piece for Gamasutra about this that I highly recommend reading.


Vodka Drunkenski is my role model

I must confess that I have a huge boner for the classic Nintendo game Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out. The combination of simplistic boxing mechanics and damaging racial stereotypes is irresistible. How can you not pop one for an italian dude named Pizza Pasta? The above video, advertising the upcoming Wii Punch-Out title, masterfully takes advantage of my nostalgia. The casting for Doc Louis is spot on.


‘Reality’ is quite subjective

Momma’s Boys: The Beginning Of The End. I hear everyone born in Iraq is made of jello. Off-brand jello.

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