A long-overdue rant on the nature of how process and bullshit has triumphed over creativity, education and common sense in the American online space.
So I’m on Ebay and tell them I’m in France and give them a delivery address having ordered an OTC pharmaceutical. So it gives me English counties from which to choose. Where I live here in France is, pretty obviously, not on the list. But it says they need the county. Which I can’t give them. “Contact us,” it suggests.
It takes me through four pages of fuckwitted dumbassed questions and then suggests I ring them. So I go to the ‘ring us’ panel, and there’s the French number I just gave them, that was fucking clever. I choose it and the red words appear ‘Invalid UK telephone number’. So I give up.
Did you ever become really, absolutely double-fucking-dog certain that arse-brained US software designers stop wristwatches in their spare time?
Do you get that urge to enter the head office of an online provider in an overcoat hiding 37 phials of nitro, take the lift to the 11th floor, walk into the boardroom to be faced by 25 obese, bald silo-dwelling shitheads, and say in a telephonist’s voice, “Your delivery of nitro-glycerine, gentlemen – catch!” and toss each of these oxygen-wasters enough to blow the top off Mount Rushmore, which is almost as hard as their concrete fucking crania?
I don’t mean like every day, because (thank Christ) we don’t buy online for shopping via another country every day. I mean just, you know, the day after this kind of ratshit wastes 50 minutes of your time every bastard time you try to do it.
How in the name of Mad Max and buggering Methuselah did the US get to be the leader of the World? I mean how the jam-strangling shagnastic bellended jawbone of a three-legged mule did that happen?
I’ll tell you how: by stealing the entire fucking country from a bunch of guys with feathers sticking out of their heads, having first of all dulled their senses with cheap whisky, that’s the fuck how. By finding themselves sitting on more oil, iron ore, wood, uranium, thorium, and aluminium than any Time Lord could ever imagine, and using it to make cars and bombs and then running up a twenty trillion dollar national debt. I mean how can you start with that much free stuff right there in your fucking lap and end up drowning in five million fathoms of IOUs? What have they got, an historic crack cocaine habit? Do they all have three noses, the better to hoover it up?
They have the whole fucking planet to export to, they have Coca fucking Cola and Transams and Hollywood movies and they even have Louis fucking CK to sell to us and every year they bring in a deficit.
And do you know why? Because Americans have no idea where the blue bollocking shitstorm anywhere is beyond Bangor fucking Maine, that’s why. Because they call a continent of 31 nation States “Yerp”. Because the total Soviet régime collapsed nearly thirty years ago and they still call Russians Commies. Because they can’t put either Uruguay or Uganda in the right fucking continent, let alone send something there. You could tell a Yank that Luxemburg is the planet between Pluto and Popeye and they’d believe you.
Let me tell you something now, because I’m really warming to my task here: it’s a good job that Kruschev backed down in 1962, because the American military’s chances of hitting Moscow would’ve been up there with Jill Stein becoming Prime Minister of Australia which she is like never going to do right because she has not got the scintilla of a fucking clue which ocean the world’s biggest fucking island is in, let alone where. Rule 1 on choosing to become a national leader is find the Goddamned place on the map, and 82% of Americans would flunk it.
I can be exact about that because I just made it up, but even so it correlates at the 100 per fucking cent level with the fact that only 18% of US citizens have a passport. Yes people, the World’s policeman hasn’t a clue where anything is – or how to get back for Chrissakes – once he gets to the end of his metaphorical street.
“Car 54 where are you?”
“How the fuck should I know, I’m an American”
This is a nation of people so impenetrably ignorant, I told a US couple two years ago that, as part of the deal after they got independence in 1776, George III had granted Americans a 250 year lease on the English language. So by 2026, they’d have to adopt another language, rather than just asphyxiating the one we so generously gave them.
“S’that a fact?” said the husband.
“It certainly is,” I affirmed, “What’s it gonna be – Spanish or Chinese?”
We all know, of course, what would happen: half a milion hotshot Washington lawyers would argue that ‘American’ is a language with so little ‘English’ DNA in it, it is now a separate communication form. And for once, the legal beagles would be right. What they wouldn’t say is that a separate fucking species speaks it, and the species has no ability whatsofuckingever to put England accurately on a world map to within three latitudes.
I mean we’re only the longest-standing ally they have (which makes us almost as tonto as them) but they’ve no idea where in tarnation we live. Everyone knows we live in Northern Tarnation, but not the Americans.
“Hi, Theresa?” says Donald on the Trumpline.
“Yes Donald,” Prime Minister May replies, “Hi-ow mayer I he-elp yeeou?”
“It’s no big deal Tessa,” the President answers, “It’s just my pilot wants to know do you come before or after Ireland, cross-Atlantic-wise?”
I came very close to a fistfight in Boston thirty-five years ago after some pillock said in a loud voice, “Fucken Briddish, keepin’ the Catholic majority in Ulster down”. Another American favourite is “If it weren’t for us Limey, you’d be speakin’ fucken Joyman”. And if it wasn’t for us turdbrain, you’d have had to invade Europe via China.
It’s not just maps and countries, either: give an American a gun, and he gets disturbingly vague on who the enemy is. Only the US would’ve had to invent the term “friendly fire”. Isn’t that an absolute beaut? Sorry buddy – I terminated you wid extreme prejudice but I was only tryen ter be friendly, ye know whad I’m sayen here?
But the location blindness – the planetary placement dyslexia: that’s the real problem America has. That and the fact it chose to solve its Asperger’s unemployment issues by giving them software to write, and then gave the map-reading task to people who think Estonia means executing people via gmail.
And talking of email, when I first set out out to get a personal account before most US software designers were born, somebody said ‘try AOL’. So I Googled AOL, and it said the acronym stood for ‘America Online’.
Now think about this for a second: what you have right there in the brand name is a place in a constant state of SNAFU in concert with a “space” where everything is written, run, priced, organised and dominated by employees whose total aggregate IQ is nine at most.
So I didn’t go the AOL route. As a Great American the late George Carlin said,
“Think of how stupid the average American is, and realise half of them are stupider than that.”
By God, I needed that.
PS If you have me down as a Yank-hating Little Englander, go to the Search engine and see what I have to say about the UK, the EU, Russians and the Japanese. Trust me, American cousins, you got off lightly.