Monday, December 27, 2010

Comics 837-839: Fuck You All

[No images today, because fuck you. -Ed.]

Hello, you rotten pieces of shit. Did you have a good Christmas? I certainly hope not. The idea of you doing anything besides refreshing the comment threads endlessly to see if some new atheist-tard has posted another illiterate entry using the word "Christian" as an insult so you can post "man you are so right that person is such a dumbhead for thinking that atheists are a bunch of self-important mouthbreathing trolls with the self-awareness of a retarded slime mold" is actually offensive to me, as it is to all of human society. I had a wonderful break, of course, as I always do when I don't have to interact with you loathsome cretins. Your bare existence saps the life of everything you come near, and that's not a positive quality.

But you didn't come here for the express purpose of being insulted for being mouthbreathing atheist trolls with the self-awareness of a retarded slime mold (but see the postscript below). You came here to hear me bitch incessantly about XKCD, a webcomic which is "written" and "drawn" by Randall Munroe, who is a basement-dweller in the city of Somerville, Massachusetts, and currently he is outside of Megan's dumpster, wondering why the presents he gave her are in there, unopened. (They contain "sexy" lingerie, by which he means "lingerie which have linux things written on them," and some cloth napkins with mysterious protein stains on them.)

When last we left our hero, he was writing some terrible comic where he whines about religion or some shit. We join him in a humorless attempt to derive humor from coupon codes.

837 could almost be funny. It's not, of course, because it was written by the aforementioned stalker and author, Randall "Randall Munroe" Munroe, but you could probably make a joke out of something like this without much problem or effort. The problem is mostly that the threat is kind of weak. "I saw you steal something 20-odd years ago" is not really that threatening. There's a statute of limitations on that shit, and in Massachusetts it appears to be about six years.

I can already hear the cuddlefish complaining that I'm just nitpicking and obviously Randy wants me to suspend disbelief in order to make this work, but come on. Theft is a minor crime. Worst case scenario, we're looking at felony theft, which is usually a pretty minor charge, and the addition of a burglary charge for illegal trespass. Neither of these are "OMG YOU KNOW YOU CAN HAVE ALL YOUR SHIT FOR FREE" offenses. It wouldn't have been difficult for Carl to write about a more interesting offense. Something that would be a secret that someone would actually be worried about coming out--an actual crime with no statute of limitations, perhaps, or just something which is either widely or personally viewed as deeply wrong in a moral sense of the word.

And I can also hear some particularly stupid cuddlefish complaining that, no, the joke is that the theft is such a minor thing and it's a contrast. But here's the thing: theft isn't a big deal, but it's not a complete non-issue. Maybe if it was "three years ago you left the state and purchased a Macbook Pro, thinking nobody would notice," it would be funny. But we're stuck with this: a crime that is mediocre in its intensity, remarkable only in that it's so utterly bland.

Is it supposed to be made worse by the fact that he stole it from a dying woman? I'm going to assume it was some piece of fancy jewellery or some shit. And while I'm not an advocate of stealing, come on. Unless you stole something which was directly improving her quality of life in her last days, I don't see how her health is even remotely relevant. I know you suck at writing, Randall, but do try to make the thing your entire joke hinges on at least somewhat compelling.

838 was apparently about me! I allow myself the conceit that Rob actually writes my name into his comics just to get at me, because nobody is going to stop me saying it and it's impossible to prove, like all good conspiracies.

This one was so bland that when I was first remembering it, I didn't notice that it was a Christmas comic, and was planning on criticizing him for failing to release a Christmas comic on Christmas eve, when he did one a week or two before. But on looking back on it again, it was, in fact, a Christmas comic, so I didn't write that as a review, except to enlighten you all as to what might have been. What a world!

It's certainly better than last year's effort, which was abysmal. But Jesus Christ, this was bland. Apart from being GOOMH-bait (even I, Lovecraftian horror that I am, have idly wondered where sudo reports these things), this is boring Linux nerdery with a half-assed holiday . . . twist? Let's go with "twist." God knows Randy needs all the credit he can get.

839 was ruined by a surfeit of useless references. The joke could be good--it even almost is--but for some reason he insists on referencing a bunch of other board games, which just makes it kind of annoying. I know he's going for LOL RANDOM HOW WACKY, or perhaps he's just not confident in his joke and hoped that padding it with references would make it funny, but it didn't. Quite the opposite, in fact. The details matter. He could easily have made the conceit "two chess pieces stranded on a desert island" and not insisted on the Catan and Battleship references, and it would have been just fine--simple, but fine.

More is not always better. Frequently the best solution is, in fact, to use less. Simplicity is an art form that you'd think Randy appreciates, given his art style. Apparently not! He keeps trying to be complex, or at least failing to be simple, and it detracts. I'd say "try harder next time," but these days I'm pretty sure Randy's problem is actually trying too hard.

PS. Before I was a troll on xkcd sucks, I trolled religious forums on the internet. It was fun trolling the fundies for a while, but eventually the effort grew stale. I have since moved on to trolling atheists instead, wherever I can find them, and I am not exaggerating when I say that atheists are without a doubt the single most amusing group of people to troll that I have ever encountered. I'd be willing to say they are probably the most amusing group I am ever likely to encounter.

Just throwing that out there. Please continue arguing whether or not trolling atheists is actually worse than the Holocaust because atheists are only improving society with their whining. I hereby dedicate all comment threads, ever, to this discussion.

177 comments:

  1. i like trolling fat people

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  2. they're harder to find in large groups, and they don't react as predictably--fat people, unlike atheists, have variations in personality and beliefs.

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  3. unfortunately when you get a large group of fat people together they... they tend to eat each other

    it's pretty disgusting to watch?

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  4. The only fun athiests to troll are the hypocrites, and that's pretty much true of all religious groups ever.

    Now we're discussing trolling instead of athiests. THIS WAS YOUR PLAN ALL ALONG WASN'T IT

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  5. Evolution is a lie! Do some research, people!

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  6. i don't think 'hypocrites' is the right word. though maybe it is? the ones that are fun to troll tend to view 'being an atheist' in a very religious fashion, though they vehemently deny that their religious beliefs are religious in nature, for some reason. and since they're very anti-religion I guess that's kind of hypocritical. but any moral code besides 'making fun of atheists makes you worse than Hitler and Jesus combined' isn't central to atheist beliefs so I don't really count that.

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  7. i am a munroe atheist

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  8. Rob just using the word atheist to describe a group that includes the minority of atheists and doesn't even seem to include any remotely prominent vocal atheists besides Pat Condell is POLITICALLY UNHELPFUL.

    AND SAYING POLITICALLY UNHELPFUL THINGS MAKES YOU WORSE THAN STALIN.

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  9. The atheists that are fun to troll are the ones who care about it too much. But fundamentalist atheists are just like the fundamentalist religious, and overused. I'd like to see someone trolling pantheists. That'd be, at least, original. :|

    Comics boring, review is okay. Though I'm still not sure why you referred to Randall as Rob(as in "I allow myself the conceit that Rob actually writes my name into his comics")... is that a freudian slip, Mr. Mason/Munroe?

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  10. scott being an atheist who denies that there are very many atheists like that makes you one of the atheists like that.

    also have you never read any prominent vocal atheists? they all fall under this description. every single one of them.

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  11. I trolled deists and accidentally caused the Declaration of Independence. FML.

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  12. Maybe I am just being SUPER GENEROUS but I get the sense that, well, in that very specific context, of course Sam Harris or Dawkins will come across like that, but in normal life circumstances I imagine them being respectful, un-angry, and most importantly, I imagine them spending the majority of their time thinking of things besides religion.

    Pat Condell is the only one I've read or watched who gives me the impression he spends a substantial amount of time sitting around being angry at religion.

    As for atheists as a whole, of course it's a minority who act like that. I can think of no reason that reaching the conclusion "there is not enough/any evidence for god" would follow into "I will be a constant moral crusader!" any more often than anything else.

    Obviously they do exist. The last comment threads 4:47, for example.


    PS: Oh god... I, I just thought "woo, that killed five whole minutes! Success!" I have the single most boring life in the entire world.

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  13. scott: mostly people who aren't like that don't call themselves atheists, because the word evokes connotations of Dawkins-style fundamentalists.

    mole: what

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  14. See the Freudian slip at the start of the stuff about 838? It reveals what we've always known.

    Anyway, I thought the threat worked not because of the legal issue, but because of the idea that he was playing on festering guilt. It's the sort of misdeed a person could do on the spur of the moment and regret for the rest of his life, being too afraid of what people would think of him to ever undo it. I thought the threat was the best part of the comic.

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  15. if memory serves rob calls himself a nontheist

    this means the same thing as atheist but allows him to say he isn't an atheist when he's trolling atheists

    honestly who knew it was so much effort

    CAPTCHA: ranter. no comment necessary

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  16. actual review stuff: i dunno rob, stealing from a dying woman may not be worse than stealing from a not dying woman when you look at it in a rational utilitarian way, but a basic level it's stealing from someone vulnerable - like stealing from a baby. there's a sense of moral revulsion there rather than it making it a worse offence.

    admittedly it is well known you are fond of stealing from babies but i think my point still stands

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  17. Rob, it's hard to answer that when you haven't specified which part you've misunderstood. Though I guess it's hard enough to answer that when it doesn't have a question mark.

    So, I'll guess and suppose you didn't get the second part. To that, I say: review your damn review, Rob. Hint: it's there right at the start of the "838" section.

    Cheers.

    CAPTCHA: blewingo. A very kinky way of playing bingo.

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  18. I proved myself a coward who would desert a dying man.

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  19. Rob, I suggest you take your own advice and stop writing. I don't like xkcd, read this blog regularly, and then it began to get stale. A few weeks after this Carl jumped ship, but you never stopped. Furthermore, your posts have very little actual critique. While there are a few good points, they are hidden in narratives of Randy's life that you have clearly strawmanned him into. He could say the exact same shit and replace Randy with Rob. I am in no way advocating for xkcd, but rather letting this blog go if you can't think of original, funny things to laugh at xkcd for. As I understand it, thats exactly what Carl realized.

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  20. Rob could you BE any more of a pedophile???

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  21. i just don't think that theft is something you still worry about 23 years later. even (or especially) if it's from a dying woman. it has to be a pretty serious crime if you're still worrying about it more than 20 years later. something you regret to such a degree that, despite having had a vast amount of time to get over it (or tell yourself it was a youthful indiscretion--this only really stops working when you've passed, like, 80 years old), you still feel that someone keeping it secret is worth $80.

    and hey, remember that time that randy used this "computers and festering guilt" motif before? I just remembered it right now.

    "actual review stuff: i dunno rob, stealing from a dying woman may not be worse than stealing from a not dying woman when you look at it in a rational utilitarian way, but a basic level it's stealing from someone vulnerable - like stealing from a baby. there's a sense of moral revulsion there rather than it making it a worse offence."

    even if you accept that, (1) it's theft. a minor crime against someone's property, and property that she likely does not need. it would be different if it were 'stealing all the money a widow's husband left her, so she is left virtually penniless and without a source of income.' but 'taking something from the house of a dying woman' just lacks any sort of poignancy. it's a really, really boring crime. there are SO MANY OTHERS you could use. he went with one which is one step up from "in 1987, you ran a stoplight. you thought no one saw you. YOU WERE WRONG."

    "Furthermore, your posts have very little actual critique. While there are a few good points, they are hidden in narratives of Randy's life that you have clearly strawmanned him into."

    uh, yeah, that's the entire point. critiques are boring as fuck.

    though "strawman" is not an accurate word here by any stretch of the imagination. the word implies that I am deliberately mischaracterizing Randy's argument in order to tear it down. you might have slightly better luck with "ad hominem," but Randy doesn't really have an argument and I'm not using the insults as an attempt to discredit him.

    this is largely because they are not, in fact, sincere insults! they are jokes. they are amusing to me mostly because sometimes you get people such as yourself who start complaining about them, saying that they take away the substance of the critique or whatever, even when they don't (as in this case).

    but hey, whatever helps you sleep at night, man.

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  22. yeah i get your point the transgression in question being pretty minor - just quibbling with the idea that it being from a dying woman is irrelevant.

    "saying that they take away the substance of the critique or whatever"

    that presumes there is any substance to start with

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  23. I guess? but I feel like a crime against a dying person is only worse if it actually has some direct impact on them. maybe I'm just picturing a bedridden woman who really doesn't care about her Glenn Beck's Apocalypse-Grade Gold stash in the basement.

    usually I do put a few actual critical elements in there /somewhere/. but yes, by and large, most intelligent people seem to be able to understand that the jokes are jokes and appreciate the posts for what they are: completely meaningless drivel that sort of organizes comment threads.

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  24. well if the majority of readers appreciate your jokes, more power to you. Dismiss my comments, you know your audience and you are helping your blog. However, this format of post is relatively new (within the past couple months at most), whereas this blog has been running for years. I'm just saying that I, and perhaps some others, used to think this blog was funny and regularly visited it, and now do so once every couple weeks. But do whatever you like, its your blog.

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  25. thank you, person who is posting anonymously and is still paying attention to the comment threads to see if anyone has responded to your brilliant opinion, I will definitely listen to your sage advice and am thankful you have given me authorization to do whatever I like. I was worried for a moment that I might not be pleasing some narcissistic anonymous commenter.

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  26. This is so boring I decided to take a look at xkcdsuxredux. Now it has only one boring post by Redux H4xx0r/Redux himself/Randall Munroe. And it's boring. And somewhy people keep on commenting.

    XKCD hate is becoming boring. I hope a few hours away will solve this. :P

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  27. I like how rob trolls everybody by putting his and Carl's names where Randy's should go.

    Boring: What happens when trolls try to out troll other trolls.

    Can when go back to xkcd criticism and hate circle jerking yet? Or is the self deprecating/self trolling/self hating circle jerk got a few more rounds left in her?

    Captcha: troll

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  28. You know what my hobby is? Not collecting stamps. I have all kinds of opinions relating to stamps based on my hobby of not collecting them.

    That's my response to atheists who give a shit about what anyone else says about religion.

    Anyway, can't say much about this comic because Rob pretty much covered it. I would've said the same thing about it being better if it were a desert island! GOOMHFA!

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  29. why does bishop and knight has food and why black and white dont they fight in chess

    also rob religion is serious business

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  30. I know there's a lot of Dane Cook hate out there, but his routine about saying "bless you" to an atheist is pretty funny.


    "When you die nothing happens!"

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  31. Disclaimer: I am a stereotypical Athiest who has an opinion on everyone else's beliefs, and feels the need to explain to them why they are so very wrong.

    Bret: Your analogy is pretty weak. If Theists are stamp collectors, Atheists aren't non stamp collectors who have opinions on stamp collecting. Atheists are also stamp collectors who don't believe stamps have an intrinsic value greater than the number displayed on their face, and that thinking otherwise is just silly. Just because a stamp is "prettier" doesn't make it worth more than 25 cents. And what happens when a stamp gets mailed? It's gone, used up. You can never use that stamp again, sure you can put it on display on your mantelpiece, but the stamp doesn't care, it's been used up, there is no stamp heaven, and there never will be.

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  32. This is why Pastafarianism is the best religion evar. May you all be touched by his noodly appendage.
    R'amen.

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  33. No Rinnon, atheists are non stamp collectors who are constantly having people call them sub-human for not collecting stamps.

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  34. 4:15 even when I was a Christian I thought that was one of his more horrible moments as a generally horrible pile of horriblosity.

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  35. God is made of dark matter.

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  36. the perfect illustration of how dull xkcd is these days: even an atheism vs religion debate is more interesting than ragging on it

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  37. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  38. @Capn: Trolololol.

    Seeeriously, though, there was a time when discussing xkcd was interesting. Now we're dragging the same atheism-fueled discussion into the thread instead of talking about the newest xkcd. A discussion which was held in this blog at least once before. Probably twice.

    So, what I'm trying to say is... if no one's gonna make a good job of being funny, I'll have to start trying. And when I start telling my "changing lightbulb" jokes, I won't stop!

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  39. Alan: good job reading the alt text before freaking out!

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  40. I need to know what Alan Wrote. For science.

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  41. Alan's original text:

    "it's not Battleship, retard, it's chess notation. "B" stands for bishop, "K" stands for king, "N" stands for knight - are you with me so far? - and a3, e5 and c3 are positions. Look: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chess_notation"

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  42. My favourite atheist justification is definitely "If God exists, He has to be evil. Therefor I don't believe in Him". Sort of like, "the government is probably full of corruption, so we should probably just keep out of its way and it'll keep out of ours, right?"

    I'm also pretty sure Pagans have the most proof. Look at the world and tell me it ISN'T being managed and watched over by a set of imperfect gods who are more interested in their own affairs than humans, and whose nature is rooted quite firmly in Celestial parties, drinking, and orgies.

    Captcha: unboop.

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  43. I wish modern pagans believed that. I'd sign up in a heartbeat.

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  44. As a neopagan, I can tell you that religion for about 99% of us is about affirming a)how our 20th Century re-constructionist religion is actually the oldest religion in the world, b) how Christianity stole everything from us despite ecclesiastical records from the 3rd and 4th centuries outlining quite clearly and simply the Biblical reasoning for modern practices, c) how we're still being persecuted today, just like atheists omg when will the Church's power come to and end!?, d) that it is morally okay -- no, it is our duty!-- to screw strangers without hesitation and experiment with whatever we can get our hands on, because the Church can't stop us now, Darling! and e) that our million or so unorganized, already fractured, and generally young/inexperienced/unskilled members are, like, totally a world force to be reckoned with.

    Still better than "there is no god" Atheists [and any Atheist who isn't a "there is no god" type really needs to just re-evaluate their terminology], but not by much.

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  45. they need to get back to the whole sacrifice-and-orgies thing. there was a time when pagans were badass instead of kind of sad.

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  46. "My favourite atheist justification is definitely 'If God exists, He has to be evil. Therefor I don't believe in Him'."

    I don't think anyone's ever said that.

    Ok SOMEONE probably has, but the problem of evil is more to highlight absurdities in specific religions.

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  47. "Still better than "there is no god" Atheists [and any Atheist who isn't a "there is no god" type really needs to just re-evaluate their terminology], but not by much."

    The vast majority of atheists are agnostic. Atheist just means non-theist. Or at least, that's all it means to most people calling themselves atheists.

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  48. I was originally going to apologise for being a Loyal Lurker who only pops in once every fifty years to feed a troll, because it seemed like the conversation got a lot less interesting at that point. Now I'm not so sure it was my fault.


    @Rob: I thought the people who deliberately wanted Dawkins-ish connotations went with "antitheist"?


    Why would Alan run away like that? Why can't he just say he's sorry and admit he made a mistake? Then we could all be friends.

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  49. "The vast majority of atheists are agnostic. Atheist just means non-theist. Or at least, that's all it means to most people calling themselves atheists."

    it's funny, but the only people who ever say this are atheists who fall more or less squarely under the traditional definition of a fundamentalist atheist. the Common Folk atheists these fundie atheists insist are the most common type don't seem to be interested in defending the good name of atheism--indeed, many of them don't like being called atheists, and most don't really care what you call them.

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  50. "@Rob: I thought the people who deliberately wanted Dawkins-ish connotations went with "antitheist"?"

    surprisingly, most of them tend to be in denial about the fact that mostly they just hate religion in all of its forms and want it to die. they sometimes adopt monikers like "rationalist," and I think Dawkins tried to get them to call themselves "brights" (for serious), but mostly they're the people who are out-and-proud lockstep formations of militant atheists, insisting, in identical language, that atheism is just the absence of a belief in god, and that there is no commonality between any two atheists, ever.

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  51. Woah okay while I was posting, the conversation got like, way better?

    Agnostics are supposed to be undecided, but the statement "there is no way to confirm the existence of a God, therefore I don't believe" is not inherently agnostic - that's where all the Pastafarian/Intelligent Falling/Invisible Pink Unicorn/Non-stamp collecting stuff comes from. Saying that I don't believe in something simply because I'm not convinced is not the same as saying I'm undecided.


    I like the idea of a Sacred Text that has the potential to be adapted into a sitcom or silly teen movie. I think the description of neo-paganism in this thread (which is the sum total of everything I now know about it) comes closest to this, so I am intrigued.

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  52. yeah, fundie atheists don't seem to grasp the fundamental difference between someone saying "I believe that knowledge of the divine is impossible" and "I don't think there's any evidence that God exists."

    they're often trying to convince me that, despite their functional certainty that there is no god, they have the same epistemological beliefs that I do, and it's like, "uh, no, you believe that knowledge is possible. stop telling me that I believe the same thing you do."

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  53. How are you defining "the divine"?

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  54. "I believe that knowledge of my dick is impossible" and "I don't think there's any evidence that God exists." ... I would say the fundamental difference is really EASY to grasp once the terms are clearly defined like this!

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  55. I don't think anyone's ever said that.
    -Nuggins

    BAM!

    Also, the Norse Reconstructionist religious text is clearly the greatest of any Faith. Only religion to prominently post in its Bible a keg run.

    Captcha: Zogider. Zog i das was? [[You atheists should be laughing at this -- see what I did there?]]

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  56. for serious though, "the divine" and "God" are terms which I use largely interchangeably. I generally feel that "the divine" is better when talking about the general existence/nonexistence of such a category of entity, since it works with all stripes of theism, whereas God has a very mono-centric implication.

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  57. Rob, you raised the site just like you -- it has devoured everything that comes near it, including my post.

    Captcha: Dissande. If you speak Italian, this reference sorta makes sense.

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  58. i wish it only devoured the posts of people i didn't like

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  59. Long post made short: Norse Reconstructionist has the greatest religious text. Proof? What other faith has a story about a keg run?

    Also, nuggins, people do make that argument. Also note the title this fellow chose to start his thread. For those of you too lazy to click links, example:
    [...]it merely states that if god exists, he is evil, and therefore I would rather be atheist than believe in god

    Captcha: Caemiesb. Caem i e onde?

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  60. OMG

    Ravenzomg is a neopagan, and it's somehow more right than Christianity

    Not only that, but one of the central points of the religion is "affirming" how Christianity stole shit from them. THIS IS OBVIOUS TO ANYONE WITH HALF A BRAIN. Read the stories and look at the pictures, it's like saying 2005 King Kong is a ripoff of 1933 King Kong. DUH

    You only have to fight the Church over this, everyone else knows and/or doesn't care.

    YET ATHEISTS ARE ASSHOLES FOR FIGHTING THE CHURCH. They aren't fighting the Church for the right reason!

    All in a day's work for the JUDEAN PEOPLE'S FRONT

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  61. i'm fairly sure i used to not hate everyone

    *sigh* i liked those days

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  62. Currently I'm trying to find a religion that worships moles. According to my gf, moles are sacred and related to Asclepius in old Greek myth, but I need something more substantial. Something more on the Egyptian levels of worshipping!

    ...what, if you're gonna continue this suckass discussion, I'm gonna be non-sequiturish. As Rob said, "fuck you all".

    Oh, and this:
    - How many xkcd fans do you need to change a lightbulb?
    - Pi. Because MATH IS COOL! LOLOLOL!

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  63. We need another Ryan Learn-level idiot to derail things, because right now the comment threads are hella boring.

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  64. @ 447

    I think the bottom line of those us who disagree with your line was more, morons are morons for being morons? On all sides of this?

    Seriously I cop more flack and discrimination in my life as a VEGETARIAN than as an atheist. And this is after 12 years of Catholic schooling. There are plenty of believers in my life and somehow we all get along just fine. Something to do with none of us being dicks, I guess?

    I can't imagine the hardships you must have endured as a non-believer. It's especially hard for me to imagine since, as a non-believer I've managed to dodge every single one of those, maybe completely by accident, while spending over half my life utterly immersed in a Christian environment. Perhaps I and every other atheist I've ever known are the lucky, lucky few?

    @P.Mole - I wholeheartedly support your non-sequitirs and your quest to find a mole-centric belief system. Might I suggest you combine the two and found your own religion based on profound left-field mole comments? Also I would like to see a visual depiction of Pi people.

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  65. "I believe that knowledge of my dick is impossible"

    Also, I am saddened because I just realized I missed the most obvious "because Rob is fat" joke in the world.

    But for serious, that is a far more concise definition of "the divine" than I'm used to. Most people seem to be too vague to be able to really discuss what it is exactly they believe in.

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  66. MykalT, have you ever heard the phrase "I've created a monster"? You might want to remember that. :D

    So, where was I? Oh, yes. Pi people. Silly non-math-lover, Randall will never get in your head! Pi people are simply the result of dividing a circle of people by their radius! How can it not be simple.

    Now, if you excuse me, I have a talpidean myth of creation to forge-- I mean, to research. Atheists, non-theists, theists, deists, pantheists, monarchists... tremble, for the claws of the Megatalpos shall hit Earth as soon as the Stillstones are gathered in the silence of our hearts!

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  67. @Ann Apolis: Your problem is over-estimating people. I know it's nice to have hope for humanity, but honestly? Just don't. You're only going to be disappointed. Aim low, and one person in a hundred will pleasantly surprise you, rather than 99 percent of people showing you why you can't use sarcasm, generalization, hyperbole, or allegory [answer: they're too functionally illiterate to appreciate it].

    Anonymity doesn't make jerks of us all, it just turns us into morons somehow? Or is that the water supply? I've given up. You're all morons as far as I'm concerned until you redeem yourself with a)a name and b) evidence that you're functionally literate.

    @Mole: Just claim you're a Mole re-constructionist. If anyone calls you on the fact that there never was a Mole-worshipping cult, tell them that they just haven't seen the Light yet, or alternately that they're just afraid to accept to Truth.

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  68. Wait, I'm confused; so MykalT created Rob?

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  69. He said 'a' monster, not 'the' =P

    I'm pretty sure there's always BEEN a Moleism, but some crazy albino went to quite a bit of trouble to bury it all under a conspiracy some time ago. Still, the claws of Megatalpos are deep within all of us, every one, way down at the bottom of our hearts. To truly understand, you have to sniff hard and dig deep!



    ... how many people are in the circle? And what are their names?



    captcha: brothers. No, seriously. I'm feeling all warm and fuzzy deep within my mole ... you have a mole.

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  70. I read the line in 837 as some sort of vague horror-movie-type reference. Like as in "oh no, the dying woman that I stole from has risen from the grave and is now buying stuff on the internet--give her shit for free!"

    I don't know if that makes the comic funny or not, that's just how I read it.

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  71. This discussion just reminded me about ravenzomg's extremely poor understanding of evolution.

    Fuck you rob, fuck your fat ass with a dildo stuck on an electric drill.

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  72. I was going to explain how my non-stamp collector was a perfect analogy when I realized it was fucking boring.

    Instead I'm just going to say that I'm an atheist because god must have made me this way.

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  73. still fucking boring i'm afraid. try again?

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  74. The Silence, sister Ravenzomg. It's the Silence of the Stone we seek. Only by keeping our paws on the ground we can feel the Silence of the Stone, and it shall tell us what to do, or else the talon of the ancients shall reap our souls corrupted by the falseness of the Word. Hear not the Dark Sound, child, for the Silence is the way to the sacred love of moledom.

    Oh, and Mykal: the people are xkcd fans. It's a circlejerk. Which give you a jerkpi, but it's as good as any pi.

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  75. All brothers and sisters live beneath the soft loam of death's garden, but Megatalpos' rough-hewn tunnels shall lead us to the worm of life, to eat and be one with the cloying dark of the universe. The mole-God resides in our hearts and shovels, and he winks from the center of every diamond. He pulses through the singing veins of every subterranean creature. Humanity must unite to begin our long journey to oneness with dirt.

    I feel like that Moliere guy from the Disney Atlantis movie would grok this religion pretty well. Also, I'll go ahead and assert manfully that there is no mole-God but Megatalpos and Professional is its prophet. May divine might embolden your noses and infuse your favorite digging claws, sojourners.

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  76. where do the mole people fit into this brave new world of yours

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  77. "Would grok this religion"

    May you die the Death of a Thousand Angry Dicks.

    Goddamn this comment thread is fucking boring, where's a pitchfork when you need one

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  78. Man, fuck this blog.

    Rob's an unfunny obese pile of aspergers and cocksucking.

    Why the hell did Carl leave? This place has gone to complete shit. Fuck it, I'm done. This place is as terrible as xkcd.

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  79. Rob, a single cuddlefish is unhappy with this blog and has left it.

    WHAT WILL YOU DO TO ADDRESS THIS HORRIBLE CATASTROPHE

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  80. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  81. Okay Rob, help me out here, cause I'm trying to figure out what kind of Atheist I am. Preferably, you'd be able to help me by creating some kind of online quiz that looks at your answers and gives you a result with a cute picture that I can link to my friends, but in the absence of that I'll just ask.

    As an Atheist, I would say that due to a significant lack of evidence for a god, that holding to the belief that there is no god, is justifiable, though I am ready to adjust my position when more evidence is presented.

    I'm also one of the type who does not like organized religion not because of the belief in God, but because they're like unions. A very big union. Sometimes unions are good, they protect the rights and safeties of workers, and sometimes unions are bad, and they use their heavy weight to push their own agenda beyond what might have been reasonable. Except in this case, all the unions are essentially in competition with each other for members.

    So yeah, where do I fit in on the Atheist spectrum? Can I call it a spectrum? Or is that being too arrogant? Like, there aren't enough types of Atheists to need a spectrum.

    PS: Please include a cute picture of a bunny rabbit or kitten when you answer. Thank you.

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  82. Croaker, there is no god. There is the Stone and its Silence, and Megatalpos is the first ancient mole, whose talons carved the Earth. I am not a prophet, but a forger of canon, a teller of stories.

    Trust the Stone and your path on Earth shall be clear. Listen to the Silence, brother, and you shall find your way.

    ...okay, how bland must an xkcd be to people actually pay attention to my ramblings?

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  83. We're just humoring you.

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  84. I'm Roman Catholic, and I still like you all! Big hug now!

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  85. I have felt the Silence and it is beautiful.

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  86. "Hear not the Dark Sound, child, for the Silence is the way to the sacred love of moledom."

    i am pretty sure you mean molestation

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  87. May all hear the wisdom of the Prophet Rob -- he is all knowing, for he is everywhere.

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  88. All good moles use the molestation. Not only do the tunnel-trains run completely soundlessly, augmenting the silence-song of their hearts, but it saves them gas money for their mole-cars.

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  89. UndercoverCuddlefishDecember 28, 2010 at 6:16 PM

    what the fuck is a religion

    if i did not know any better i would say you guys are making up words to troll people

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  90. a religion is like a moleucopia but far less cool

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  91. All this talk about religion is making me horny.

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  92. Making fun of people is easy to do. Is that really your best source of entertainment? Circle jerking yourself?. That's the shit jocks do.

    Jocks.

    Rob must have a boring personality.

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  93. people still use the word "jocks"?

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  94. I am pleased to see you did not have a good comeback, because that means I was right.

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  95. I think he said that because you're an idiot.

    -TM

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  96. no, no, this is important. what on earth possessed you to think that calling someone a "jock" in the year of our Lord two thousand and ten was in any way witty, clever, or useful? so clever, in fact, that you repeated the word a second time for emphasis on how clever you think it is?

    I mean, even ignoring the fact that in order for it to work I'd have to identify in some way with the insufferable nerds who still think that the world is out to get them, that stereotype and the worldview that produces it have both been dead for years.

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  97. talking about "jocks" in a derogatory way means you're either still in high school, or just totally incapable of moving on

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  98. also "circle jerking yourself" is just called masturbation

    masturbation.

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  99. and I believe masturbation is actually the sort of shit nerds do. jocks have girlfriends. haven't you been watching your 80s/90s teen movies?

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  100. It is useful because it accurately summarizes the point I am trying to get across. I did not think it was clever or witty.

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  101. it might if you live in your sad little world, but nobody else here does. maybe you could enlighten us as to why you, alone of all the people in the universe, still think the word "jocks" has edge or meaning?

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  102. did you know that, despite what 80s movies might tell you, "jocks" generally have larger penises than "nerds" and are (probably unrelated) generally better lovers?

    this is because "jocks" produce more testosterone during the early years of puberty. and because they have more confidence and are more popular, they get started having sex much earlier and thus are more experienced and skilled in the bedroom.

    so suck it nerd

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  103. I believe it has meaning because it has a common definition that most people understand, demonstrated by the responses here. I do not believe it has edge.

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  104. so you're saying that I'm athletic and have a cheerleader girlfriend? how is that conveying the message you're trying to get across?

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  105. (ps, if you don't think it has edge you should probably not use it when you are trying to insult people. just fyi)

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  106. No, you misunderstand. The definition of "jock" is not what I was using to convey the message I was trying to get across. The word "jock" was what I was using to convey the message I was trying to get across. The definition of the word "jock" was the actual message I was trying to get across.

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  107. I misunderstand because the word "jock" in this context is completely and utterly bereft of meaning. but since you asked, I did date a cheerleader in high school, so I guess guilty as charged!

    still not sure why you particularly care whether or not I'm a jock though, or why you think I am one. well, I am--you're one of those nerds with a persecution complex who thinks that anyone who makes fun of your ingroups is a jock. but I'm pretending, for your benefit, really, that you actually have the capability in that little nerdy brain of yours of understanding social groups on their most basic level.

    I sense I'm being too generous.

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  108. So... we're going to bitch about atheists believing something that we don't because atheists bitch too much about us believing something that they don't. Everyone bitching must use sweeping generalizations about the group that they don't belong to while insisting that the group that they do belong to is far more diverse than any such generalization would account for. First group to invoke Godwin's Law wins.

    Sound fun, you guys?

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  109. XKCD840: I'm not baffled at the simple pun here, but I am baffled at why Randall made a comic about this. It's just... ah, who am I kidding? People are going to print this off and show it to all their friends saying how hilarious it is.

    So what's the deal with airline food?

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  110. You have confused me. I did not ask whether or not you are a jock, nor did I accuse you of being one. I simply mentioned that you share a common personality trait.

    You have surprised me, however, with your false assessment. You never made fun of my ingroup, therefore I never reacted, so I never gave you any evidence to believe that I am a nerd with a persecution complex.

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  111. keep telling yourself that, kiddo. I'm sure you're totally able to say what you meant and just choose not to.

    but you are right about one thing. I don't own every piece of Green Lantern merchandise ever released, so you would probably find me boring. c'est la vie! have fun being jealous of my athleticism and cheerleader girlfriends.

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  112. Experiment is over.

    Results are conclusive.

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  113. I'm atheist. I'm fine with religion.

    Did the world just explode? I think not.

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  114. The problem with jocks and sexuality is that all jocks ever think about is sport, while all nerds ever think about is sex. I learnt that from Revenge of the Nerds and had it confirmed by sexkcd.

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  115. UndercoverCuddlefishDecember 28, 2010 at 10:35 PM

    what do you call somebody who spends the vast majority of his time thinking about something other than sports or sex

    captcha: nuking

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  116. Meh.

    You agree with 'LOL I TROLL YOU' Rob?
    So why continue trolling?

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  117. is that not what just happened? /b/ posted some stupid shit, everyone made fun of him for being stupid, and then he tried to bow out by saying 'EXPERIMENT CONCLUDED SUCKERSSSSSS'

    that is the exact storyline of 'LOL I TROLL U'

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  118. He did call himself /b/ so it's not likely that he ever thought he'd be taken seriously

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  119. The irony is lost on Rob.

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  120. the irony that a group of mouthbreathing idiots produced a mouthbreathing idiot?

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  121. you do realize that saying stupid things "on purpose" and getting people to make fun of said stupid things is not clever trolling, right?

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  122. This is too easy. You're so predictable.

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  123. yeah, I have this thing where I like making fun of people who are as retarded as you are. when you persist in being retarded I'll persist in making fun of you! you're so clever for figuring that out.

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  124. Meh: "So why continue trolling?"
    Rob: "is that not what just happened?"

    I was referring to your confessed pension for trolling atheists, et al. You seem fine with trolling (for no other purpose than to rile people up) and yet you attempt to denounce it by linking to 'LOL I TROLL YOU'.

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  125. That was exactly my point.

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  126. "I was referring to your confessed pension for trolling atheists, et al. You seem fine with trolling (for no other purpose than to rile people up) and yet you attempt to denounce it by linking to 'LOL I TROLL YOU'."

    there is a difference between trolling, and attempting to withdraw from a conversation in which you have been thoroughly denounced as an idiot by saying "LOL I TROL U." one of them doesn't require acknowledgment. the other is a sad ploy to save face. I'll leave you in your infinite wisdom to figure out which one is which.

    "That was exactly my point."

    sure it was, honey.

    protip: latching on to the nearest remotely intelligent point that sort of agrees with you doesn't make you appear clever by proxy. sorry!

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  127. So serious = not wanting to be touched?
    Does that mean silly = wanting to be touched?

    He really could have actually had the putty say something that was serious instead of a matter of fact statement to an action.

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  128. I am like two (2) steps ahead of you with every comment.

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  129. What word am I allowed to use if somebody asks me about my religious beliefs Rob? Do I have to pretend to be theistic?

    I quite liked going to church (I lived in a small village where church was unavoidable because the only school was religiously-oriented). It's like a fun history tour with songs.

    Also, as far as I can tell you're upset about people being militant about their non-belief. Almost militantly so. There should be a word for people who think they're above being an atheist despite actually being one. A nice shortening of "contrarian ultradick" might be appropriate.

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  130. Joke's on you, I don't even know what that is.

    @Anon: There's an xkcd comic about exactly that. See? It applies to everything!

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  131. The Serious Putty comic is a good example of why Randall can't write or convey (of course, he doesn't need to because he's cornered the market for people getting a kick out of just recognising tech/science things that they can use for boasting purposes). He has come up with the idea of serious putty, and just presented it as plain fact. The best way he could make that into what he views as an acceptable comic was to get the putty to show that it is serious by being a bit grumpy and not up for playing. Ha. Hahaha. Ha. Ball pit. Hah ah aha. Shit.

    This is what you get when you have a fan base that lets you get away with not trying.

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  132. poor baby doesn't know how to use google :(

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  133. "contrarian ultradick" - One who contradicks.

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  134. I was certain you wouldn't go for that one. "It's too easy" I thought. I'm giving you too much credit I guess.

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  135. see previous comment w/r/t "when you do stupid shit, I will make fun of you for it." being too stupid to use google is included under "doing stupid shit!" I'm not sure why you feel accomplished for doing this.

    perhaps this is why our education system is so broken. children are intentionally putting down the wrong answers because they feel a sense of smug accomplishment when they predict that their teacher will correct them for it later.

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  136. I think our education system is broken because they're teaching Intelligent Design as if it was science. god does not exist, wake up.

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  137. but that doesn't explain how you're so incredibly stupid. or was that genetic?

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  138. Surely you can tell the difference between stupidity and poor education?

    And surely you're not so autistic that you took /b/'s "I don't even know what that is" message at face value, rather than as the jokey banter it was obviously intended as?

    Sorry I'm so angry. I was just imagining how awful it would be if an atheist used a irrelevant blog to rant about religious people. What a cunt that person would be!

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  139. BAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW

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  140. LOL /b/ likes to play with cunts what a homo

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  141. You guys have been just grand, but I've really got to scuttle on down to the molestation. Your future overlords, seated upon their silent thrones at the heart of the dread city of Yeh'Ryl, shall be glad to hear of your apparent receptivity to their black faith.

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  142. I think I'm gonna have to side with Rob on this one.

    The only poo head here is /b/.

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  143. /b/, read my writings and seek the Silence. Because silent you're way less likely to make a damn fool out of yourself!

    So, new comic, let's leave my Horwood inspired homilies aside for a while.

    ...it's a pun. A pretty obvious pun. And... not very attached to the punchline.

    Randall is regressing to elementary school level, folks. This is so stupid I'm having trouble gathering my thoughts to bash this shit properly!

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  144. your father's vaginaDecember 29, 2010 at 4:19 AM

    Any Atheists genuinely hurt or offended by rob's comments have self esteem issues. And also extremely poor trollsense

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  145. Anything would have made the serious punchline better.

    "Whoa! Serious putty? Does that mean I can't do anything fun with it?"

    "Srs bsns only"

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  146. Atheism is a solved problem: If there were a God, how could there be an xkcd? All atheists can now relax.

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  147. rob ate a cheerleader in high school?

    new comic: so bad

    ^what about malicious or apathetic gods? maybe xkcd was meant to balance out all the good things in life, making it meaningful?

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  148. @MykalT, I'm glad to hear your atheism goes unmolested. Or does it?

    I don't know where you live, but:

    (1) In the U.S. it is effectively impossible for an atheist to be elected to any vaguely important public office. Even if they don't run on an atheist platform or emphasize atheism in any way.

    (2) In South America the same is true. What's more, many important media outlets will not hesitate to impugn the reputation of atheism on absolutely no grounds. A recent major case was a newscaster saying that a certain gruesome murder "could only be caused by not having god in one's heart". Moreover atheist ad campaigns are routinely refused by billboards, buses etc on grounds of "offense". You may venture a guess as to whether christian ads are subject to similar treatment.

    (3) In the Middle East religion is a major source of law. They routinely stone widows for "adultery", apostasy warrants death, and in the last couple of months Israel has been trying to make its citizens pledge allegiance to a "jewish state".

    (4) In India politicians must not only be religious but some higher-ups actually have sorcerers in their staff.

    (5) Still in the second decade of the 20th century the catholic church used its influence over South America, Portugal, Spain and Italy to delay for years or decades the legalization of (civil!) divorce.

    (6) In most countries of the western world it was legally required until relatively recently that ALL government employees be christian.

    Maybe you skipped over the wall of text. But here's the fallacy that the atheist-bashers like to commit: restrict attention to people's private lives.

    Maybe everyone is an asshole at a personal level, or maybe everyone gets along at the family dinner, but one of the groups is having their societal rights trampled on a much more regular basis. Whether anyone SOUNDS ARROGANT or COPS FLACK is a laughably irrelevant concern. Probably a lot of gay activists sound arrogant to the Pope, but hey, maybe the Pope's delicate sensibilities aren't as important as equal rights for everyone?

    I have yet to see an argument against atheists that could not be directly applied to the gay movement. "Oh shut up it's not so bad", "you're coming off arrogant", "some of my best friends are atheists".

    OK, maybe the insane counterfactual "if atheists were in charge they would segregate religious people, therefore SHUT UP".

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  149. Fight the powa!!

    On an xkcd hate blog ya'll.

    Disclaimer: Atheist.

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  150. Atheists are people, too.
    Therefore, not all atheists are the same.

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  151. Nope the last one works too. If gays were in charge, they would probably persecute straight people.

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  152. And by 'persecute' I mean 'bum'.

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  153. Let's put the gays in charge so that the local gay newspaper can become the city newspaper, that'd brighten my day and then I'd always know where to get good leather.

    @Rochambeau: "Burn" here is a sexually-based metaphor I assume.

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  154. My little brother came up with the idea of serious putty when he was 3.

    Just sayin'.

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  155. @Ravenzomg

    I'm not the author of the second comment bearing my name, but I will explain the pun. See, in British English, bum means butt, and to bum means to have sexual intercourse in the bum. On the other hand, to bum (or more precisely to bum s.o. out) means to cause him/her to be disappointed or depressed, which is a close, albeit not perfect, substitute for to persecute.

    I was just underlying how relevant I found Anon 447's point: "I have yet to see an argument against atheists that could not be directly applied to the gay movement."

    Captcha: culas. Te souviens-tu de ces merveilleuses vacances passées à Pragues, et du soir ou tu m'en....?

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  156. @Rochambeau: All the more reason to get a cheap tinny blogger account.

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  157. ....to avoid impersonation. I'm afraid you're still equally [if not more] viable for sodomy.

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  158. The latest comic would be mildly funny if it weren't for the alt text. What the fuck is PuTTY and why would Randall ever think that was funny?

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  159. "If gays were in charge, they would probably persecute straight people."

    well they deserve it, fucking breeders

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  160. Atheists are just angry because they know deep down they will burn in hell.




    Am I making it too obvious? >.>

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  161. rob you idiot "cannonball" is AWESOME

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  162. UndercoverCuddlefishDecember 29, 2010 at 4:37 PM

    @thepirateking as with all of randalls attempts at humor the answer to your question can be googled

    as for why randy would think it was funny

    well he is randall munroe and writes xkcd for starters

    captcha: awsmseat

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  163. "What the fuck is PuTTY and why would Randall ever think that was funny?"

    PuTTY is a popular remote terminal emulator. You've seriously never heard of it?

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  164. "@MykalT, I'm glad to hear your atheism goes unmolested. Or does it?"

    Well geez, when you put it THAT way, I guess some dude on the other side of the planet WOULD have a better idea of how my life runs than the voices that live in my head.


    "I don't know where you live ..."

    You hurt my feelings, you couldn't figure out where I live simply by the fact that I referred to myself as an Aussie and briefly mentioned that my Nana's opinion on the Australian PM is based on her religious views? (Not to mention the use of phrases such as, "cop flack", whose scope you as a non-Australian may have misunderstood. I forgive you, we're proud of being incomprehensible for some reason.)
    How can I be expected to read every single word you write when you don't extend the same courtesy to me?

    To be fair, I live in China at the moment, though. (And atheists do MORE than okay over here, you'll just have to take my word for it okay cos I don't know what kind of slander you capitalists have been exposed to over there!) I made a bad joke about them being pro-xkcd a while back. My gut tells me that I am right, clearly they block all of blogspot to conceal the existence of the growing anti-xkcd movement within.

    "Maybe you skipped over the wall of text. But here's the fallacy that the atheist-bashers like to commit: restrict attention to people's private lives."

    Nah, I didn't, and no, I don't,. Are you insinuating that I am a self-hating atheist? =S
    Anyway, the point that you are not quite getting is that you are getting cause and effect sorely muddled. The fact that religion is used as an excuse or a tool to persecute others does not mean that the persecution stems from religious belief, but rather the tendency of people to be small-minded fools.

    Atheists and Christians are all the same in the eyes of the Muslims in charge in Malaysia, for example. Muslims and atheists are pretty much the same as far as the Fundie Christians that America is so famous for producing are concerned. Contrary to popular belief, Buddhists haven't done that much better historically, and there have been tons of examples of people without religion going after religious groups, too. It's not that atheists are being singled out, it's the tendency of idiots within groups to think everyone should believe the same thing that they do - and atheists are by no means special in this respect. We've got our own ranting lunatics too.


    You might say, "okay well that doesn't mean we shouldn't DO something about it!!!" Okay, sure. Keep yelling at people in a panicked and indignant tone on the internet. It's us against EVERY MAJOR RELIGION IN THE WORLD, all at the same time, all over the place. You've sure got me converted to the cause. What's our next move, chief?

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  165. "d) that it is morally okay -- no, it is our duty!-- to screw strangers without hesitation and experiment with whatever we can get our hands on, because the Church can't stop us now, Darling!"

    Best religion ever! Ok back to lurking.

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