June 27, 2005

Nick Coleman's An Idiot, But I Repeat Myself

It's been awhile since I've mocked the journalistic geezerisms that spew forth from Nick Coleman's fountain pen. It's not that he hasn't been worthy of derision, it's just that his written ruminations are so bad, it's tiresome to pick apart each of his mental bird-droppings.

Well, the drought ends today!

When Daniel was thrown into the lions' den, angels came and shut the mouths of the lions. Then, when King Darius saw Daniel had been spared, he set Daniel free and put his accusers in his place. They got eaten.

No Nick Coleman column is complete without a lead paragraph intro that is eight million degrees away from the actual point of his column. Nick's not happy unless he's treating his readers to a Bible/History lesson. Actually, now that I think about it, Nick's not happy EVER. No problem is too small that it doesn't warrant the patented Nick Coleman overreaction, as we shall see.

We need leaders like Darius.

Of course, old Daniel would never have found himself in the lion's den in the first place had King Darius not issued an order banning prayer to any one god EXCEPT HIMSELF for thirty days, so yeah, Nick, we need more leaders like self-absorbed King Darius. You fucking moron.

If we had some, Minnesota would have fewer kids being mauled in back-yard zoos, like the 10-year-old from Royalton, who was nearly killed a few days ago when he was attacked by a tiger and a lion that had bolted from their cage.

Annnnnnd, the segue is complete. Nick has now glommed onto his point for this column, such as it is. A child was mauled by an exotic pet, and Nick's pissed off about it.

Angels may have saved the boy, but they got timely assistance from the Morrison County sheriff, who called upon a veterinarian to shut the animals' mouths. Permanently.

That's Nick Coleman-speak for "the vet killed the tiger and lion." Leave it to Nick to use 27 words to explain what most people could explain in seven.

Nicely done. If county authorities hadn't been so thorough in their duties, I would suggest that the animals' owner spend some time with his charges. Alone. Inside the cage.

You get that? The owner should have fed himself to his hungry pets in the wake of this tragedy. Old Nick is so subtle and clever, it's a wonder to me that he's not nationally syndicated.

There's a bit of Ol' King Darius in me, I guess. I'll take little kids over big cats, every time.

And, also, there's a bit of Nick Coleman who wouldn't mind if people were required by law to pray and worship only him for 30 days. At any rate, Nicky Boy has established that he's mad at exotic pet owners. So, now let's see if he has any further points.

What a kook-ridden, cat-scratch-fever state this has become. Just think about the large and unknown number of your neighbors who keep killers in their yards.

Ummmmmm. . . none?

Then ask why the state hasn't done anything about it that amounts to more than tossing bunny rabbits to tigers and saying, "Nice kitty."

There you have it, folks. In Nick's walnut-sized mind, the STATE should get down and dirty and start addressing this atrocious epidemic of rampant lions and tigers and bears. . . OH MY!

I remember writing a story more than 20 years ago about a guy who staked a lion in front of an abandoned farmhouse he owned in order to keep vandals at bay. I don't remember the guy, but I remember the lion. His name was Spike. In those days, a lion working as a watchdog seemed kind of cute.

For those familiar with Nick's writing, information like that found in the preceding paragraph is what Nick believes entitles him to the claim that he "Knows stuff."

Then kids started getting eaten, bite by bite.

Whoa. That's a big claim. Got anything to back that up, Nick?

I don't have to list all the recent incidents in which people have been attacked in Minnesota by animals that should be breaking the necks of gnus.

Without consulting Google, I can recall only two incidents in the last five years during which a child was mauled by an exotic animal in the state of Minnesota. There was the recent Royalton incident, and the more local case of a few years ago where a child was dragged by a white Siberian tiger. Of course, Nick makes it seem like lions and tigers are roaming the streets like cows in India. And he doesn't have to list all the recent incidents because, well, that would counter his argument too much.

We can accept that we live in a state where there is a small risk of confrontation with black bears, gray wolves and mountain lions (that last species is making a comeback and has a taste for joggers, which helps motivate them).

*rim shot* *uncomfortable cough from the back* *crickets chirping*

Oh, and by the way, Nick, are the mountain lions motivated, or the joggers? Never fucking mind.

But all of these animals were in Minnesota before we were. Whether you want to hug them or make rugs out of them, you have to admit: They make an honest living.

You couldn't hear it, but trust me, I just groaned out loud. Although, I did just remember the Loony Toons bit with Ralph Wolf and Sam Sheepdog, punching their time cards, which made me grin.

Back yard maneaters from other continents have no excuse. These maneaters (more accurately, kid-eaters) are a menace. Their "owners" (can anyone "own" a tiger?) are morons. But the state is worse.

Minnesota is a mouse.

Nick's right. This state has become a haven for exotic animals that prey daily on the luscious entrails of Minnesota youth. We need an exotic animal control task force, not unlike the Bear Patrol episode of "The Simpsons." "We're here! We're queer! We don't want any more bears!" What does it tell you about Nick Coleman logic that his columns can be boiled down to episodes of Loony Toons and "The Simpsons?"

Like many folks, I had thought that the Legislature had taken care of the tiger threat by banning the ownership of all exotic animals down the throats of which heads can disappear. But I put too much trust in politicians, many of whom might drag you into a cage and gnaw on your femur themselves, if they could get away with it.

One can almost imagine the heated debate in the Minnesota State Legislature regarding exotic animal ownership. It has to be item #3 on the list of pressing state business, right below "IMPORTANT SHIT THAT MATTERS" but above "INSIGNIFICANT SHIT THAT DOESN'T HAPPEN ALL THAT OFTEN."

Here's all the Legislature did: They stopped more morons from chaining dangerous beasts in their back yards. But they didn't do anything about the deluded and already existing morons who believe that putting lions and tigers and bears in their yard makes it Oz.

Yeah, a grandfather clause can be a bitch like that.

Those morons got grandfathered in: All they have to do is register their killers, reduce the ambient odor of moldy meat stuck between giant teeth, and keep the neighborhood kids from disappearing.

The requirement about disappearing children is #8 on the registration list, by the way. The actual wording reads: "The undersigned agrees to keep his/her "insert animal species here" from feasting on neighborhood children, including, but not limited to, children visiting from other neighborhoods."

Nicole Scherzinger. Nicole Scherzinger. Nicole Scherzinger. Nicole Scherzinger. Nicole Scherzinger.

One wonders what Nick thinks about, say, Dobermans, or Rottweilers or German Shepherds or Pit Bulls, all of which can be lethal pets to children, if not properly trained and supervised.

They're not even doing that much.

Many have ignored the deadline for registering their dangerous darlings. As a result, no one knows how many are out there.

Again, Nick, do you have anything to back up that claim? Not even a Google search? Nothing? Just good, old-fashioned "Nick-Coleman-Knows-Stuff" wisdom, eh? Pardon me if I'm a bit un-convinced then, mmmkay?

All we know is that many a lion has come to light only when it is seen loping across Otter Tail County with a Cub Scout in its mouth.

Holy Unrestrained Hyperbole, Batman!! To hear Nick tell it, you'd think we Minnesotans are living on the fucking Serengeti.

There is an easy way to end this menace. All we have to do is make the ownership of dangerous animals illegal.

Period. End of story.

End of mauled children.

Except for the occasional attack by, say, Dobermans, or Rottweilers or German Shepherds or Pit Bulls, all of which can be lethal pets to children, if not properly trained and supervised, but I repeat myself.

Yes, I know: When lions are outlawed, only outlaws will have lions. But that's all right.

You!! Nick Coleman!! Stop stealing my material!! fucking thief.

We have a lot of really well-built cages for outlaws.

Few ever escape.

Nothing wraps up yet another crappy Nick Coleman column better than a terrible conclusion.

The real irritating thing? Coleman probably gets paid over $50k a year to write moronic drivel like this. It's enough to make me cry.

Posted by Ryan at June 27, 2005 01:03 AM

Wow. What a tool.

Posted by: Rick at June 27, 2005 11:09 AM

That's too succinct, Rick. Come on, channel your inner Nick Coleman and stretch that out to 30+ words.

Posted by: Ryan at June 27, 2005 01:17 PM

Mr. Coleman will have to tighten up his prose considerably if he hopes to compete with the public panic created by the granddaddy of all "Wild Animals Terrorize Populace!" stories, the Central Park Zoo Escape hoax of 1874. This still remains the high-water mark for fear-mongering in wild animal attack stories, the standard by which all subsequent efforts will be judged.

Posted by: flamingbanjo at June 27, 2005 02:26 PM

Cmon you sissy's Anyone can slog through a P.O.S. Coleman column. I dare you to try to listen to his live rants on the powerhouse AM 950. Great post.

Posted by: mgherity at June 27, 2005 08:32 PM

MG. I've read about Coleman's radio "show." I would like to hear it sometime, but here in Rochester, reception to powerful Twin Cities stations is minimal, so Coleman's show is pretty much not going to happen.

Posted by: Ryan at June 27, 2005 10:03 PM
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