Sweet Lord, Take Us Now (8/6/01)

Be afraid... be very afraid. We're about to point you toward a video clip that contains approximately seventy-three seconds of the most frightening video footage ever captured on tape. Forget the Blair Witch Project; loop this sucker eighty times, strip out the color and toss in a bunch of camera-shake, and we guarantee that twenty percent of every test audience will be throwing up in the bathroom. (And half of them will even be vomiting out of fear.) Those of you with weak hearts (and weak stomachs) should turn away before things get ugly; the rest of you should brace yourselves and load up this 3 MB video clip of Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer trying to rally the troops, as pointed out by emotionally scarred faithful viewer Demian De Wit.

Still with us? Do you need a minute to collect your wits-- and your lunch? We don't blame you. What the heck was that? Is it an excerpt from Ballmer's screen test for Planet of the Apes, as suggested by The Register? Is it the portrait of a fat bald man who has taken to pouring crystal meth on his Lucky Charms in the morning? Is it final, undeniable proof that human civilization is going to come crashing down around our ears within the next decade? We can't say. All we know is that there are some things that mankind was just never meant to see, and we're left trying to figure out if there's any way to scrub the backs of our eyeballs with bleach and steel wool.

Here's a mental exercise for you: close your eyes (no, not yet-- finish reading first, you goofball) and try to picture Steve Jobs acting the same way as the dignified Mr. Ballmer. Try to imagine Steve jumping around the stage while hooting like a WWF wrestler after an adrenaline shot and a lobotomy. Picture him shrieking "GIVE IT UP FOR ME!!" in a disturbingly shrill voice while pointing his finger in the air and getting all sweaty and red-faced from those eight seconds of actual physical exertion. Visualize him desperately trying to catch his breath and then shouting "I... LOVE... THIS... COMPANY!! YYYYYEEEEEEESSSS!!!!"

Can't do it, can you? Thank heaven for small mercies. Now pardon us, but we're off to go pluck out our own eyes and call it a day.

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The above scene was taken from the 8/6/01 episode:

August 6, 2001: First it was iReview; now KidSafe gets the shaft. Meanwhile, Apple struggles with a Memphis suburb's sign ordinance that effective makes Apple's logo illegal to display outside a retail store, and Microsoft bigwig Steve Ballmer wins "Missing Link" status from noted anthropologists worldwide...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3221: Another One Bites The Dust (8/6/01)   Put on a black suit and a somber look, because another arm of Apple's Internet strategy just got lopped off without warning. About a year and a half ago, Uncle Steve rolled out an initiative by which Apple intended to improve the Internet experience both for Mac users and (to a lesser extent) for people using those "other" computers...

  • 3222: Hint: It's Not The Pinky (8/6/01)   It just isn't Monday without a little dose of surrealism and opaque bureaucracy, so it's with great pleasure that we submit for your approval Apple's struggle with the Germantown, TN Design Review Commission...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

Vote Early, Vote Often!
Why did you tune in to this '90s relic of a soap opera?
Nostalgia is the next best thing to feeling alive
My name is Rip Van Winkle and I just woke up; what did I miss?
I'm trying to pretend the last 20 years never happened
I mean, if it worked for Friends, why not?
I came here looking for a receptacle in which to place the cremated remains of my deceased Java applets (think about it)

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