Entries Tagged as 'The Emperor decrees'

The Emperor decreestrusted media & news

The Emperor decrees a ban on “click-bait” headlines that are not 100% true

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree 55C: Henceforth, there shall be no more click-bait headlines, unless the content of the connected article proves the headline to be indisputably true. For instance: “This pit bull tried to eat this kitten; what happens next will blow your mind…” If readers do not actually experience aneurisms as a result of reading, the headline is false and punishment will ensue. Consider, as well, “This article will change your life…” Well, it had better, is all I can say.  And if a headline claims that “This is the best post game speech, ever,” it bloody well had better be. Or else.  Because if it turns into some prancing, weak-bearded, self-centered, mediocre little high school spud spouting every coaching cliché he’s ever heard as he trumpets about “attitude” (albeit  with jauntiness and pluck), there will be Hades to pay. All we are asking is that the authors deliver on their promises. This is all within authorial control; therefore, the Emperor will feel no guilt in doling out punishment.

The Punishment: Violators will be thrown into a special dungeon. The sign on the entrance door reads “Most comfortable dungeon ever where you will never, ever be eviscerated, emasculated or masticated!” What happens next will blow up your mind.

Now. go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees an end to the phrase “at the end of the day”

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 12PM: National Public Radio is a good news source; it is a fine explorer of American culture, but it has created its own little inbred linguistic world full of phrases and speech patterns that the Emperor can stand no more. We just realized that a large portion of our linguistic decrees have come from NPR, over the span of this column, which is usually written after a car ride into the Imperial Palace Offices, with the radio on. The NPR offenses?  The ubiquitous use of “srtiv” for “sort of” (and the use of “sort of,” at all, where the speaker is really trying to say “exactly”); the use of “So…” in response to a question, as if the speaker is trying to imply it is about time the interviewer shut up and allowed him to talk; the use of the phrase “on the ground,” stolen from the military, to mean “in the middle of the issue;” etc… (Check the Imperial archives for any number of examples.) Now, we must speak out against “at the end of the day.” See it work in this annoying, NPR-phrase-laden sentence: “So, at the end of the day, it’s about starting a conversation…” Why does everyone want to start a conversation at the end of the day? What’s wrong with a nice morning chat? And what do you mean, “it’s about”? What’s about what? Do you mean “we need to”? And while everyone is “having conversations,” who is out there actually trying to change things for the better? (George Carlin, the top-secret Emperor of the past [yes, we succeeded him] is rolling over in his grave. )

The Punishment: Any-freaking-hoo, over-users of the phrase “at the end of the day” will be “put to bed”. “Tucked-in,” as it were, by a muscular fellow in a black hood. (And we ain’t talkin’ no memory foam comfy bed, neither; though, the stretching motion of said bed could, conceivably, fix a back problem or two.)

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that ye may not use “genius” as an adjective

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 4528: No, he didn’t quit. You can’t quit being Emperor — the Universe makes you Emperor. We were just….Emperoring. None of your concern. Just continue to obey. For instance: We’ll say this only one more time. “Genius” is a noun, not an adjective. One can not have a “genius idea.” One can have an “ingenious idea.” Someone went to all the trouble to create the distinguishing prefix and that extra “o”. Use them. You sound like a dip when you say “genius idea.” Yes you do. Don’t argue with me. I’m the Emperor.

The Punishment: Those who “adjectivize” the word “genius” will be fed dictionaries for a week. Ketchup will be allowed, as the Emperor is feeling munificent this morning.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning. 

books & writingThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees there will be no more dream sequences in novels

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 10PM: Dream sequences in novels must stop. We get it. We really do. Authors think they are, by giving us a glimpse into the character’s subconscious, increasing the depth of said character. But consider real life, writers. (More authors should, by the way.) Did you ever listen to someone recounting a dream? Did you LIKE it? Consider:

Oh, so I was in the mall but it was really my house and everyone behind the counters was a giant chicken with a PhD in Metaphysics (not sure how I knew that but, you know, in a dream you just know stuff)), but, this one chicken was actually my uncle, Fred, even though he looked like a chicken and he looked at me like he was disappointed when I told him I wanted a cheeseburger with no pickles and the next thing you know I was in a harem (but full of guys instead of women) somewhere in the Middle East, back in the 1800’s, but I was dressed in a baseball uniform except no one noticed and I, for some reason, really wanted to kill this blue camel that was tied to a palm tree next to a cobblestone road, except the cobblestones were actually hot dogs, but when I stabbed him my knife turned into a shoe and for some reason I was really mad — not because it wasn’t working to kill  the camel but because the laces were untied — isn’t that weird? — and….and…

So, no, you really don’t give us “character depth” with dream sequences. At best, you manage to bruise our brains with the mallet of heavy-handed symbolism while we try to scan the pages for where the actual story starts up again.

The Punishment: Those who ignore this decree will only be released from the Imperial Dungeons after writing a complete novel  with a quill; with water for ink and with old-fashioned “overhead projector” transparencies for paper.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

fashion & clothingThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that men must, henceforth, obtain a license in order to go shirtless

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree 55 D: It’s simple, really. The Emperor has appointed a committee of ten women: the “Imperial Council for Shirtlessness.” They will handle any requests for no-shirt licenses. Suppliants will appear before the panel and they will remove their shirts. The women will vote, giving the petitioner a score from 1 through 10. Any man given an average score lower than a 3 will be denied a license to appear in public without a shirt on, for any reason, hot weather notwithstanding. There are no exceptions, plea bargains or special considerations. If ten women don’t want to see you without a shirt on, you shouldn’t be seen without a shirt on. Period. The Emperor does this in consideration for the general aesthetics of the Empire. It should be a shining example of joyous beauty, not a funhouse full of wobbling man-boobs and oozing back fat.

The Punishment: Those who appear in public shirtless without a license will be tattooed, across the chest, with the phrase: “My Mom is Hot.” That oughta do it.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning. If you are lucky.

ends & oddThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that twerking will stop

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 4440: The way the Emperor sees it (i.e. the way you will also see it), those who twerk and those who enjoy the sight of twerking are sub-standard human beings. They are devoid of any hint of subtlety or of any inkling as to the meaning of true sensuality. The Empire can only be improved by their absence. The Emperor’s world is drowning in a flood of sexual literality and in-your-fasceness. Coquettish innuendo has given way to boring, ubiquitous, cookie-cutter shamelessness.

The Punishment: Twerkers and, if you will (let’s face it: even if you won’t), “twerkees,” will be gathered up by the Imperial Dance Police and taken to what we like to call the “Dungeon Twerk-off.” The judges: famished Imperial lions. After all, if people want to be seen as meat, why should we stop them?

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

recipes & foodThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that waiters shall no longer act like guides to the mysteries of the universe

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 31-B: What’s with this new trend in restaurants – of the server coming out and introducing himself or herself and then asking, “Have you ever been here before?” as if we are on the precipice of a great leap into the unknown? It’s not physics. It’s not a philosophy seminar. It’s ordering in a restaurant. Restaurant owners: The server  is not raising the perceived value of your food and drinks by acting as the Virgil to our Dante. He really is not, just so you know. The process is quite simple: I tell you what I want; you bring it out to me. I eat it. I pay. I wobble out the door merrily patting the sides of my distended paunch. That’s it. So, quit it with the pretenses.

The Punishment: Minions of the Empire are commanded to order, as usual, upon hearing this ridiculous question, but they are to order soup. Piping hot soup. They are then to pour the soup over the waiter’s head, while apologizing: “Oh! I am sorry. I have never eaten soup here before. Is this not the right way?”

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

getting olderThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that age is not “just a number”

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 70: Age simply is not “just a number.” Age is, after, say, twenty-one, the irreversible decline of the mind and body, the ultimate result of which is, in the best of all possible situations, an uncomplicated and peaceful death. But age is, most often, a slow ride on a dirty bus, with sticky floors, among a bunch of stinking strangers to soap, at the end of which we find ourselves befuddled, boxed off from the things and people we love through the loss of vision and hearing and terrified (if we are blessed with the mental capacity to be terrified) by the question of whether our beliefs in an afterlife will prove to have been even remotely true. Age is the arduous road to either oblivion or paradise, but it is not just a number. Age is a walking journey, each step pf which leaves us weaker, more filled with existential anxiety, and looking — if I am being honest — less and less attractive at the waypoint of each birthday. Age is a journey from which there is no return. Age is the turning of the padlock on a cage that will be dropped into an ocean. Age is doom, in the most Anglo-Saxon sense of the word.

Oh, please.  I’m doing you a favor. You can’t rage against “a number. “

The Punishment: Users of the phrase are doomed to learn the truth. This is punishment enough.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning(ish).

books & writingThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that tripping and falling can no longer be used to enhance a story’s plot

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree 4815162342: We’ll have no more of it. Figure something else out. Life’s suspense and life’s problems come from myriad places. Tripping and twisting one’s ankle is not the only way find oneself in danger. It is not the only way for the pursuing ax-murderer to gain ground. Mine the depths, writers.  Oh, and while we are at it, no more using “cuts like knife” and “what is this place?” How about “cuts like a father’s disappointment” or a simple but much more effective: “where the hell are we?” We can’t take it anymore. It will cease, or there will be no more writing. You hear us? Don’t ruin it for the rest of the minions.

The Punishment: Anyone guilty of these writing infractions will be placed on a treadmill and forced to run at 7 miles per hour. The Imperial Exercise Minister will sit with a remote control and he will press the DEAD STOP button, again and again, while the offender is running at speed.  When the runner can no longer calculate simple addition  problems, he or she will be released.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning, unless he decides not to, because, after all, he is the Emperor and can do whatever he wants.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that “Ban Bossy” is banned

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 449505: I don’t know who these people are who think they can go around banning things behind the Emperor’s back, but it must stop; therefore, the Emperor decrees that Ban Bossy shall be banned. Don’t get us wrong. This particular “ban” is voluntary. And it is for a good cause…this teaching girls to be leaders through a campaign that attempts to control language. Good idea — controlling language is a great source of power. (Someone ought to write a dystopian novel about that.) I trust these people, thoroughly. They have our young women’s best interests in mind; these ban-ers of words are like big sisters, in fact. This is so much different than “thought control” because it is good. The Emperor well knows that the intention justifies the means. But — it is, in fact, our Empire. No one shall ban thoughts or words but the Emperor.

The Punishment: Those who ban words without the Emperor’s leave shall be detained in the hot desert sun. They shall be instructed to ban the words “water,” “thirsty,” “drink” and and anyother words relating to the wetting of the proverbial whistle. Otherwise, they are completely free to ask for the crystal-cold liquid which will sit before them on a table, freshly stirred, with ice cubes swirling around, beads of cool moisture dripping languidly down its sides… They need only ask — provided they can ask within the language constraints given them.

Now, go forth and obey. 

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning (or so).

televisionThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees and end to the growling announcer

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 444440: What’s with the trend of the growling announcer? — these TV narrators who chew their words and turn the letter S into “Sh”*, as they speak, and then end their sentences with growls? Have ye heard this, O observant minions? (It’s like James Hetfield changed careers, for Pete’s sake.) Look for these angry elocutors on ABC Family Channel and on car commercials and on Discovery channel. Is this just one guy, or another example of meatballs-for-heads nature of the average person? Oh! That is successful! I will imitate it exactly, instead of carving my own niche! And after that, I will write a book about a kid who goes to a wizard school and I will call him Larry Trotter! Oh, the Emperor will find out and then…

The Punishment: These grumbling goofballs will be given growling lessons by a real expert.  In small cage. That is locked.

*A special thank-you to faithful minion “azchurch” for reminding us about the annoying speech-trend of turning the letter S into “sh.” We blame the original 90210. (One is much better advised to spend time with 90125.)

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that no one will use the word “team” outside of a one-mile radius from a field or court

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 5-5: First off, there is an “I” on every team in every sport. And the “I” stands for people who carry their teams. We could give you a list, but why take up space? Second, the Emperor never could have risen to this status of world dominance and power if he had thought as part of a “team.” (Truly, the only team of which you need to be part is the one that does what it is told to do by the Emperor.) Teams? Let them concentrate on stuffing their balls into nets. The rest will go on trying to forge a path for themselves and learning to think on their own so that we don’t turn  into a world full of bees in a hive. “Team effort.” Blech.

The Punishment: Those who use the word “team” outside of a mile radius form a sports field will be force to sit for a year in what the Imperial Dungeonmaster likes to call “The Penalty Box.” (You don’t want to know.)

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

Now, go forth and obey.

fashion & clothingThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that coffee cups may no longer be used as a fashion accessory

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 9AM: Contrary to apparent popular belief, a cup of coffee is not a fashion accessory. The Emperor can’t exactly prove what he is about to say (and, of course, he doesn’t need to, because he is, after all, the Emperor) but he gets the distinct impression that people are considering their to-go cup of coffee as part of their overall “look.” They seem to consider making an entrance with cup-in-hand to be some kind of subtle statement of…what? Their on-the-go lifestyle? The fact that they are suburban rock stars who need to medicate themselves with caffeine in order to keep going in the demanding face of parental taxi work? Or might it be that the brown hue of their delicious convenience store cup matches so well with their coats and kicks?  In whatever case, please don’t force the Emperor to take away coffee.

The Punishment: Those perceived by the Imperial Watchers to be thinking and acting in the way delineated above will be ground and brewed and served to the Imperial Pigs for a special winter treat.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

televisionThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that the phrase “but, wait!” shall no longer be used in television commercials

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. LP-700-4: The Emperor rarely does things just for poops and wah-has, but he has decided, this week, to ban the phrase “but, wait!” from all commercials. By doing so, we will effectively put a stop to: “What would you pay for a tool that slices, dices, juliennes and raises your children while doing the grocery shopping, in space, during a meteor shower? But wait – don’t answer yet, because, if you call within the next six seconds, we’ll throw in this beautiful, red Lamborghini Veneno, free of charge! But that’s not all! We’ll double your order and throw in free, lifetime maintenance on the cars…but only if you order in the next six seconds!” Why ban this? Why not? Let the commercial writers expand their creative horizons in order to whip up marketing excitement. Pull out the crutch and watch the bastards topple, I say.

The Punishment: Violators will be run over by a Lamborghini Veneno driven by a guy who is reading a thesaurus.

Now, go forth and obey.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

televisionThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that tooth-brushers must actually use toothpaste in toothpaste commercials

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 4093-1.4: Everything is an illusion in media, these days — “movie magic” and all that rot. CGI. Green screens. We make every effort to create technological alchemy on screens both large and small. Yet, for some inconceivable reason, in every toothpaste commercial ever made, we are forced to endure, from the mirror’s perspective, the farce of  impossibly handsome people brushing their teeth…dry.  The Emperor doesn’t care if it is gross – enough of this deception. Henceforth, people are no longer allowed to brush their teeth without toothpaste in toothpaste commercials. Let’s see some slobber. Let’s see some good, chin-drippy, projectile spitting that ends in disgusting, dangling, transluscent strings of pearly, wobbling glory. If the ole choppers ain’t bubbly with white, spittle-frothed paste, they simply ain’t clean! Truth in advertising! Huzzah!

The Punishment: Directors of commercials for toothpaste — who don’t use toothpaste in their commercials — will be forced to brush with the Emperor’s own, personally- invented “Imperial Tooth Scouring Cream.” (A special blend of various astringent and acidic compounds, stirred lovingly into an entirely unsanitary and unwholseome creamy base that is simply called: “Mystery White Gloop.”

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that you will stop using the word “ginger” to describe people

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 3/334-z: Ginger. Ginger is a root. It is used for giving food that naughty tinge or earthy deliciousness. In some dictionaries, maybe around the third definition, if you’re lucky, it can be a color. But it is not a noun when referring to anything other than the spice. One is not “a ginger.” One might go so far as to say one has “ginger” hair. (It’s pretentious, but allowable.) Under no circumstances, whatever, however, will it be permissible, in the Empire, to refer to one’s self (or anyone else) as “a ginger.” It’s trendy and it is annoying and the Emperor will have no more of it. Thou art a red-head.  Own it or suffer the consequences.

The Punishment: Anyone heard using the word “ginger” as a noun to describe him or herself (or his or her brethren), will be ground into power, sprinkled onto human-shaped cookies, and fed (by Fofo, the Angry Red-Headed Clown [of "Finkle and Finkle's Jolly Nightmare Circus"]) to the Imperial Tiger, Lars.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that you will stop trying to make your long stories short

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 922105: You cannot make a story that is already long, short. So stop saying, “…to make a long story short…” It’s already long. You have already prattled and chuntered everyone into a coma. Shut up now. Make a long story stop.

The Punishment: Offenders will be beaten by the Imperial Torture Master for seven hours. Then, he will stop and walk away, saying, “…to make a long beating short…”

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

musicThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that band members must smile in their promo pictures

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 3-G/222:  The “band face.” What does it actually say? – this forward-chinned, full view of the nasal passages? – this…sour look…that bands have had in their promo shots since some time in the late sixties? What does it say? Maybe it is some anemic statement: “We are arteests! We will take this picture because “the suits” say we have to, but we will not smile! – so there!” Is it a threat? “If you buy our record, we will  beat you up.” Maybe it is just another sophomoric attempt, on the part of musicians, to put on the “troubled soul” cloak of the phony bohemian. (If that were the case, though, their purpose would be better served by simply sulking in a chair for every shot.) Whatever it is, it is getting silly. Because it is silly, it is now an impotent gesture. It will stop.

The Punishment: Any band member who does not smile in a promo picture will be facially decorated by the Imperial Artist. Offenders will have a big smile drawn onto their face with multi-colored Sharpies. They will wear this smile during the entire promotion and touring process for whatever album they next release.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

technologyThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees that sound engineers will stop squishy-mouth, immediately

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No PE-15: Spit, sloshing around and clicking in the mouths of professional radio personalities is the most disgusting sound in the world. (No! It is even more disgusting than that. Sh. Yes it is.) Sound engineers for these radio programs need to fix this, now.  Right now. Turn down the “highs.” Move the microphone away from your proximity-effect-addicted bosses. Do whatever you need to do to end this. Carl Castle, for instance, sounds like his face is ground meat that someone is squishing his hands through. We can’t take it anymore. Sound engineers, heed this warning.

The Punishment: Engineers who do not rectify this squishy issue – today! – will be hung upside-down and lowered into a vat of ground beef and water. They will remain suspended this way until they cease to be.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

language & grammarThe Emperor decrees

The Emperor decrees an end to the phrase “a hot mess”

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I have been declared Emperor of the World. Let us not waste time explaining why or how; let’s all simply accept the fact that we are better off, as a result; hence, my next decree:

Emperor’s Decree No. 543-0000000.1: You must understand: If a phrase annoys the Emperor, it is not the same as if it annoys one of the “regular people.” If it annoys the Emperor, it is simply (and indisputably) a bad phrase – one that shouldn’t exist. When it comes to His Everlasting Wonderfulness, opinion is fact. I truly hope you are all getting a grip of this idea by now. If you are not currently bound in chains in a dark dungeon, you may be getting the message…but not necessarily. For instance, the phrase: “A hot mess” in reference to a person or a situation… It makes the Emperor’s skin crawl with little beasties of pinchy tickliness. It’s a stupid phrase and it is one that is parroted constantly by the group-thinking, TV-imitating masses.

The Punishment: Parroters of this pretentious and painfully poor poetic patter will be taken to the Imperial Dungeon so that they may be boiled in (environmentally friendly) vegetable oil and, thereby, learn the literal meaning of “a hot mess” before they begin their new life as…well…soup.

The Emperor will grace the world with a new decree each Tuesday morning.

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