It'll be hard, we understand. Sometimes the specifics of a story are so perfect the headlines practically write themselves. That's been the case this week with the resurrection of Anthony Weiner's dick pic sexting fiasco. As John Oliver put it on The Daily Show, his name is "so perfect for the scandal he was caught up in that it rekindled my faith in God." Weiner sexting weiner pics is too good. It's a gift, and all of us — the media and Twitterati — have been having a ball. Even The New Yorker weighed in, using the most phallic symbol in New York to depict the ego of the city's most phallic politician. But the truth is, Weiner jokes stopped being clever in 2011, maybe before. The puns that were funny and original have already been told, and the ones we've been left with don't measure up. So let's all agree to move on. Please.
Let's cool it with the Weiner headlines...
Imagine if Christmas came early, you inherited a billion dollars and you won the 20 years of free Chipotle burritos contest, all in one day. Maybe then you'd know a fraction of the joy felt by whoever's job it is to write headlines for the New York Daily News and the New York Post. Stories like this are the reason the Post and the Daily News exist. So we forgive them for going overboard, especially when they give us covers like this:
But even the tabloids lack consistency. Earlier this week Vanity Fair noted that Wednesday's headlines came up short. "“Beat It!”? Shame on you, Daily News. And, you New York Post! “Meet Carlos Danger”? That’s not even a pun, merely a straightforward reference to something that actually happened." Where's the gal who wrote "Weiner's Pickle" for the Daily News? Or the guy who came up with "Weiner Exposed" for the Post? We like to think they went on to do better things, but they were probably just spent.
... and the penis puns ...
This goes for everyone, not just the magazines. Actually, this is about Twitter. Out of respect, we're not going to publicly shame anyone for their awful tweets, but be honest with yourself. You knew tweeting "I guess Weiner can't get it up... in the polls" was a bad idea, but you did it anyway. If you want to make a sword reference IRL, go for it. If you're at a hot dog stand and sudden feel inspired to wax poetic on weiners, feel free. But don't put it online.
And, okay, sometimes a penis pun can't be avoided. There's a chance Weiner will still reconsider his mayoral bid, but "Weiner Reconsider His Mayoral Bid" doesn't have the same headline snap as "Weiner Pulls Out" or "Weiner Withdraws." Weiner combined with any verb in the English language is a pun, because his surname is the worst. He really should have considered sexting another body part. But just because he didn't have the foresight to join a toe fetish chatroom, doesn't mean we have to get caught up in an infinite weiner vortex.
... and definitely, definitely, enough with the Carlos Danger jokes ...
Remember when we all found out Robert Galbraith was actually J.K. Rowling, and suddenly everything was secretly written or created by her? Remember how that stopped being funny within nanoseconds? Maybe, just maybe, your Carlos Danger joke stopped being original before you even thought of it. And, to make matters worse, the Carlos Danger reveal coincided with the naming of the royal baby. Can you count on one hand the number of "why did Kate name the baby after a Guatemalan drug lord" tweets you saw this week? Or how many "Danger is my middle name" riffs? I'd need all my fingers and toes. The best Carlos Danger tweets were the ones about the lack of good Carlos Danger tweets.
So we ran out of Carlos Danger jokes already?— Richard Rushfield (@richardrushfield) July 25, 2013
Yes, we did.
Let's. Just. Stop.
We had some laughs, we really did, but there comes a time when we have to let a good thing go. That time was 2011. A premature (sadly) Weiner joke obituary by the Huffington Post's Ross Luippold from the last sexting scandal go-round summed it up perfectly. Basically, Weiner jokes aren't funny anymore:
After today, it will no longer be inherently funny when someone says that the scandal caused Weiner to explode. It will not be funny when Weiner gets a package, or when Weiner orders his pizza extra thick, or when Weiner looks deflated. Silence will befall the room, even if someone says that "Weiner is thrust into a dark chasm, and while Weiner will rise, Weiner has a long and hard journey ahead of him."
What the news cycle giveth, it also taketh away.