It is time once again to offer advice, counsel and mean-spirited insults in another edition of “Ask Eric Stuff.” All of these questions were submitted at [outdated link], and we should point out that the very existence of “Ask Eric Stuff” on the Internet automatically puts Eric light years ahead of Ann Landers, who still writes her column with a quill and ink and has her slaves fetch it down to the post office afterward.
Dear Eric: What will be the fate of the XFL? — Dave Hymas
Dear Dave: The same as the fate of most ill-conceived, poorly executed TV shows: It will run for 10 years and win 25 Emmys.
Dear Eric: What’s the difference between LDS and RLDS (Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints)? — None of the Above in Michigan
Dear None: About 10 percent of your income.
Dear Eric: If BYU is the “Lord’s University,” why bother with the whole accreditation thing? — Wondering in Washington
Dear Wonder Wash: Because employers don’t care whose university it is; they just want to make sure you actually learned something. Also, they want to make sure you’re an Eagle Scout, or else they won’t hire you.
Dear Eric: I just wasted 10 minutes of my life reading your article. That’s 10 minutes I’ll never get back. How do you plan to pay me back? — Want My 10 Minutes Back
Dear Timekeeper: You wasted 10 minutes reading it? How do you think I felt, wasting five minutes writing it?
Dear Eric: I will be moving to Utah in the near future and I was wondering if you could give me a couple suggestions on how to assimilate myself to the culture. — Fearing for My Life
Dear Fearing: For one thing, don’t use words that contain profanity. A word like “buttimilate” is much better for delicate ears than the one you used.
Dear Eric: I opened the paper, saw your picture and thought, “This guy looks like he’s about 14 years old.” Then I read your article and thought, “This guy writes like he’s about 14 years old.” Are you really 14 years old? — Loves High School Papers
Dear I Had to Fix Your Spelling Big-Time: Yes, I’m only 14. So tell your mother she shouldn’t call me anymore.
Dear Eric: Why are commercial jingles in Utah so unbearable? Do Chuck-a-Rama, Far West Bank and United Furniture Warehouse understand how annoying their jingles are? Can anything be done? — Longing for the Days of “Where’s the Beef?”
Dear Beefy: Yes, something can be done. We can kill that Totally Awesome Computers guy. I know his commercials don’t even have jingles, but you have to admit, it’s a pretty attractive idea.
Dear Eric: Remember that one movie [“Sleepless in Seattle”] where the guy is pathetic on the radio and an entire nation of women want him? Can your column do that for me? — Sleepless in Sandy
Dear Sandless in Sleepy: Make you pathetic? Yes, my column can do that. It’s worked for me, anyway.
Dear Eric: Why do you persecute Canadians? — Crabby in Cardston
Dear Crabs: I have nothing against you Canadians, as long as you stay in your part of the hemisphere. Oh, and keep your fake money out of our vending machines. Nothing worse than getting a Canadian quarter back when you were expecting real money. Also, I can’t help but recall that Canada is what gave us Jim Carrey and Tom Green (the MTV star, not the polygamist). If that’s not incentive enough to break off all trade alliances with you hockey-playing moose-breeders, I don’t know what is.
"Ask Eric Stuff" was one of the first things I thought of when "Snide Remarks" went to twice-weekly. It's an ongoing feature that theoretically will never run out of material, since there's a limitless supply of questions people could ask; plus, as you might expect, an "Ask Eric Stuff" column is somewhat easier to write than a regular one.
The response to the question about whether I'm 14 years old originally read: "Yes, I'm only 14. So tell your mother it was statutory rape." This is so blunt it almost offends even me. Also, it's very hard to make a joke sound funny when it contains the word "rape," even in the non-coercive sense meant here. I didn't even try to slip it past an editor, for I knew that even if it made the paper, we'd never hear the end of it. So I toned it down, while still keeping the same general tenor of "Your mother's a whore." It's important to me, calling people's mothers whores.
I received the following e-mail, reprinted here exactly as it came to me.
I read you article on SuperDell and I hate him as well!
However, you sound like a tight a** close minded a**h*** and your topics and writing ability suck
perharps you should ask yourself why superdell is worth a few million and all you can do is criticize him
I responded: "Hitler was worth a few million, and all I could do was criticize him, too."
(It's terribly unfair to bring up Hitler in an argument. You win the argument, but it's kind of a cheating way to do it.)
You have to wonder why this guy who claims to hate SuperDell like I do is defending him so passionately. Actually, I take that back. You don't have to wonder.