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Sunday, November 28, 2021

Halloween is a time when ghouls, ghosts and ghastly figures prowl the streets and mischief rules above all else. By most accounts, Oct. 31 is the spookiest day of the year. We don’t really see how that’s possible, given the third Republican debate aired on Wednesday. OH! *cue Andrew Dice Clay hand motion* With that cheap jab out of the way, it’s time for this year’s scariest edition of…

Darts & Laurels

Paul Ryan was elected speaker of the House of Representatives Thursday. No. No. NO! NEIN! NON! NEE! Dart.

This week marks the 40th Halloween since cult classic and enduring midnight-movie favorite "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" was released. A glorious tribute to both ‘50s B-movies and the gender-bending glam rock of the ‘70s, the film has become a cultural touchstone for freaks, geeks and "rich weirdos" alike.

Tim Curry’s iconic performance as Dr. Frank-N-Furter, in particular, has been a source of inspiration and comfort for millions who have ever felt like an outcast.

For irrevocably altering pop culture, changing countless lives and giving the world "Hot Patootie – Bless My Soul," "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" gets a murderous, cross-dressed Laurel.

Not content to ruin bacon for us, the World Health Organization released a report Wednesday that said most of us have type 1 herpes. Yes, herpes, that most sensuous of lip accouterments.

"More than 3.7 billion people under the age of 50 – or 67% of the population – are infected with herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1)," according to WHO’s first global estimates of HSV-1 infection published Thursday in the journal PLOS ONE.

For somehow managing to ruin both barbeque and wanton hookups within a week, WHO gets a type 2 herpes-ridden Dart. We’d give a Dart to herpes itself, but it seems like that battle has already been lost.

Saturday marks the 15th anniversary of southern hip-hop duo OutKast’s landmark release, "Stankonia." Buoyed by classic singles "B.O.B.," "Ms. Jackson" and "So Fresh, So Clean," OutKast’s fourth album propelled hip-hop into the 21st century, experimenting with textures and instrumentation (including but not limited to the drum ‘n’ bass of "B.O.B." and the drugged-out, psychedelic R&B of the title track) not usually seen in the genre during the late ‘90s and early aughts.

The experimentation and success of "Stankonia" helped pave the way for the profound diversification hip-hop has undergone in recent years: The peaceful co-existence between trap bangers (Future, Migos), multi-instrumental albums with nary a traditional beat (Kendrick Lamar, Flying Lotus) and down-tempo cry sessions (Drake) can be traced directly to this album.

"Stankonia" also marked the first recorded appearance of Killer Mike, who has garnered acclaim in recent years as one-half of fellow hip-hop duo Run the Jewels, on a record.

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For literally changing the game and emboldening a generation of artists to pursue their weird musical niches, OutKast and "Stankonia" get a funked-out Laurel, which as we all know, lasts forever.




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