5 Other Things the Greeks Gave Us That Suck

WELL, WE’RE A WEEK OR SO INTO THE OLYMPICS and the hot topics are badminton, Michael Phelps, and NBC getting Twitter to shut down an LA-based gossip columnist’s account for 20 minutes. Ooooh. The drama. Over here in the Headshots head office we can hardly contain ourselves. Let us see if we can quickly breakdown why we don’t give a shit about any of this athletic nationalist elitist nonsense.

First, badminton. The birdie is called a shuttlecock. Heh heh. Cock. Next.

Second, Michael Phelps. Yes, the funny-looking kid with no body hair from Baltimore is the most decorated and successful Olympian of all-time. Super. Look how well it has worked out for Bruce Jenner, now unable to blink because of excessive Botox, father to the jailbait Jenners, and stepfather to the Kardashian clan, the least talented famous people in the history of Western civilization, a title once held exclusively by the Gabor sisters (look ‘em up kids).

You know, I’d be impressed by Phelps if his sport involved a ball, or a puck, or, you know, a more impressive obstacle than water and time. And seriously we all could have been Olympic parents if we grew up in an affluent Maryland gated community and had parents willing to get up and shave us in time for a 4 am practice.

Third. You know if NBC is going to take its broadcasting to a whole new level of incompetence, it might as well try to control the least controllable media outlet in the history of fucking everything. Guy Adams, a reporter for the UK’s Independent, tweeted some innocuous nonsense about the networks well-publicized poor excuse for television and NBC got a crony to shut his account down, which was quickly back up and now has four times the followers. Man, NBC has got to get some execs who were born after 1953 in their offices. They think we’re all still watching TV on TV.

So who’s to blame? Why, the Greeks of course. Headshots thought we’d compile a selection of other things the Greeks gave us that suck. In no particular order:

1. Anal

Okay, you knew this would get in here so don’t act so surprised. (That’s what she said!) Before the Greeks everybody just engaged in coitus the normal ways: Vaginal, oral, bestial.

Then, a couple of dudes and dudettes were hanging out on Mykonos philosophizing, and after one to many ouzo shots…. Ooompah! In through the out door. And while everyone had a great time, lube stocks went through the roof, and Led Zeppelin had a tight title for their seminal 1979 album, it was one more sexual act the world now had to master in order to please a partner.

Thanks, Greece. Like the “three pump and dump” wasn’t hard enough.

2. Greek Cuisine

With the exception of the gyro, rhymes with hero, and is just that, Greek cookery is a mish mash of olives, feta, spinach, and goat. It’s an experiment in Mediterranean cuisine gone awry. And so close to Italy, yet so far from tasty.

You ever here anyone utter: Let’s go out for Greek!? No. And there’s a reason for that. They use zucchini and eggplant with great regularity. You know what goes great with eggplant? Fucking nothing. This recent fad with pretty housewives indulging in Greek yogurt is nothing but a clever rouse. You know how to make Greek yogurt? Take regular yogurt and put it in the freezer for 20 minutes.

I took one of the interns out for Greek on the Headshots expense account last week. Big mistake. Number one was a nightmare.

3. Math



Math hurts. It is the bane of every young student’s existence. It combines letters and numbers with unfamiliar symbols. It solves problems that seem foreign and unnecessary, and yet keep most kids out of reputable colleges. You know what A + X (ƒ ÷ ∏ + ∑) equals? Neither do I, but I’m assuming the dude putting an extension on the back of my summer home knows, and as long as it doesn’t fall down during the 4th of July party, I don’t really care.

Math was important. Then the computer was invented, perfected by Steve Jobs, and now the entire breadth of mathematics is in my pocket. You know where you can shove your math, Greeks? Again, see number one.

4. Philosophy

Yes, we at Headshots realize thinking is super. Thales of Miletus begat Xenophanes, who begat Pythagoras, who begat Heraclitus, who begat Parmenides of Elea. Then came the holy triumvirate of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, whose teachings were once unique, ground breaking, and inspirational, though whose legacy remains over-bloated Arts departments that produce university graduates with no discernible or marketable skills.

It would be great if we could all sit around thinking and having anal sex all day, Greece. But some of us actually pay our debts.

5. Frats

Nothing good has ever come from fraternities, with the exception of the first Revenge of the Nerds movie, Clark Duke’s underappreciated versatility on ABC Family’s GRΣΣK, and the handy I got at a toga party from Helen Richards in freshman year. Frats have provided us with such monstrous travesties as closeted homosexuality disguised as homophobia, the perpetuation of the rohipinol trade, and the career of Ryan Reynolds. Furthermore, the elitist and nepotism driven Western society we all play in is controlled by back door (see number one) meetings where deals are made, legislation is drawn, and episodes of Breaking Bad are written.

And this is just a partial list. It doesn’t even get to the unreasonable expense of ottomans, dilapidated buildings masquerading as architecture, and Yanni.


Mike Spry is the author of JACK (Snare Books, 2008), which was shortlisted for the 2009 QWF’s A.M. Klein Prize for Poetry, and he was longlisted for the 2010 Journey Prize. His most recent work is Distillery Songs (Insomniac Press, 2011).

Related on The Smoking Jacket:
Headshots: 5 Bullshit Olympic Sports
Headshots: Zombies! Zombies! Zombies!
Headshots: Strange Bed Etiquette: 5 Rules of Engagement