How to lie in 14 steps: the WikiHow guide to dishonesty
03.24.2017
08:33 am

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Current Events
Politics
Unorthodox

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Writing for Esquire in 1969, Gore Vidal laid bare a “demagogic strategy” William F. Buckley used to befuddle opponents:

If one is lying, accuse others of lying. On television this sort of thing is enormously effective in demoralizing the innocent and well-mannered who, acting in good faith, do not lie or make personal insults. Buckley has made many honorable men look dishonest fools by his demagoguery, and by the time they recover from his first assault and are ready to retaliate, the program is over.

Why is this effective? Because the thought of lying in public, where a judge, policeman or journalist might hear, gives good citizens the cold sweats. The mere accusation unleashes the bad conscience of the regular taxpayer and snaps his mind neatly in half. Did I fail to give a full and accurate account? Am I guilty of an act of omission, if not commission? Could I have used a more charitable adjective? Perhaps I did mischaracterize certain of my honorable friend’s views, etc.
 

 
We at Dangerous Minds don’t believe the strategies and tactics of dishonesty should be the preserve of the rich, the powerful, and the stupid, and few other “content providers” will tell you the score. While the New York Times may report on “How to Improve Your Productivity at Work,” the Gray Lady is unlikely to teach you how to play fast and loose with the facts. Less reputable outlets than ours will lie to you, which can be instructive, but they will do nothing deliberately to wise you up.

That’s why, until they start teaching us how to do our own surgeries, WikiHow’s lying clinic is likely to remain their most useful public service. 

I won’t list all of their 14 steps to falsehood, but here are some of the basics. Rehearsal is a key part of the technique. Repetition gives purchase to the most absurd, self-contradictory assertion. There are a few body language tips:

Be sure not to rub your face too much, sway back and forth, or shrug your shoulders a lot. Keep your arms down at your sides rather than folding them across your chest. Don’t blink more often than normal or turn your body away from the person. All of these are signs that you are lying.

(But what if you want people to believe you’re lying? It would be interesting to try all of these gestures at once while scrupulously telling the truth, as an experiment.)
 

 
Another pro tip from WikiHow: lie before you have to. Take the initiative. I think this means you run into the living room with icing in your nostrils and scream “I did not eat the cake that is not missing!”

The Community Q&A covers likely eventualities: “What if the person has found evidence?” “Is covering up your bad deed with a less significant bad deed a good strategy?” “If I need to, how do I force tears?”

This last question is misguided. Just tell the sucker you’re crying.

Posted by Oliver Hall | Leave a comment
When Quentin Tarantino played an Elvis Impersonator on ‘The Golden Girls’
03.24.2017
08:03 am

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Pop Culture
Television

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In 1988, before Quentin Tarantino had sold his scripts for True Romance or Natural Born Killers, leading the way to secure a deal to direct his first film Reservoir Dogs, he appeared for a few seconds as an Elvis impersonator at Sophia’s wedding in an episode of The Golden Girls.

Tarantino discussed the appearance in a 1994 Playboy interview:

“Well, it was kind of a high point because it was one of the few times that I actually got hired for a job. I was one of 12 Elvis impersonators, really just a glorified extra. For some reason they had us sing Don Ho’s ‘Hawaiian Love Chant.’ All the other Elvis impersonators wore Vegas-style jumpsuits. But I wore my own clothes, because I was, like, the Sun Records Elvis. I was the hillbilly cat Elvis. I was the real Elvis; everyone else was Elvis after he sold out.”

Indeed, Tarantino’s Elvis look doesn’t seem too far off from the look he sports in his 1987 unfinished directorial debut, My Best Friend’s Birthday, in which a character he plays in the film seems obsessed with Elvis (a theme that would carry on through other films in Tarantino’s body of work).

See QT in action as Elvis after the jump…

Posted by Christopher Bickel | Leave a comment
Cabaret Voltaire to perform live in the U.K. for the first time since 1992 next month
03.24.2017
08:00 am

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Music

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The greatest musical act in world history to take its name from a Swiss Dada touchstone, Cabaret Voltaire announced earlier this week that it intends to play its first U.K. show in 25 years when it takes the stage at Derbyshire’s The Devil’s Arse Cave on April 29.

In an odd bit of phrasing, a poster released by the band asserts that the show is “billed as a performance consisting solely of machines, multi-screen projections and Richard H. Kirk,” and if you’re wondering, it seems that the surmise that Stephen Mallinder will not be involved is correct. (By the way, they used the exact same odd phrasing in press releases for their 2015 shows.)

In the 1970s Cabaret Voltaire was one of the pre-eminent pioneers of industrial and electronic music, generating albums as sinister and funky as Red Mecca and The Crackdown; it’s safe to say that anything under the banner of Cabaret Voltaire is worthy of interest by definition.

It’s true that Cabaret Voltaire played gigs all over continental Europe in 2015 and 2016, but Kirk and his doodads neglected to hit the British Isles. The useful website setlist.fm includes information on a 2011 show in the Horse Hospital in the Bloomsbury neighborhood of London, but that was actually a screening of the 1982 movie Johnny Yesno, a movie for which Cabaret Voltaire did the soundtrack. The last Cabaret Voltaire show in the U.K. before that was at the Gardner Center in Brighton on November 29, 1992.

The more interesting news is that Kirk has recently made a commitment, in an interview with FACT, to keep upcoming CV shows devoid of old material:
 

It’s totally new, I don’t play anything from the past. I think being 60, it feels more dignified than a band full of old guys wobbling about on a stage. I’ve been a big fan of Miles Davis for many years and he would never play anything from the past and the only time he ever did that was before he died. I just feel like, what’s the point? It’s not going anywhere, who wants to be playing stuff that you did 30 years ago and constantly repeating yourself? I always make it really clear that if you think you’re going to come and hear the greatest hits then don’t come because you’re not. What you might get is the same spirit.

 
More after the jump…

Posted by Martin Schneider | Leave a comment
‘The Rock and Roll Singer’: On tour with the legendary Gene Vincent in 1969
03.23.2017
01:43 pm

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Music
Pop Culture

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Larry Parnes

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Never underestimate the power of imitation.

Elvis Presley never toured Britain. The only time the King set foot in the UK was during a brief stopover to refuel the army plane that was taking him home at Prestwick Airport in 1960. With no Presley tours, ever, there was a wide open gap for homegrown talent to fill.

First there was Tommy Steele. Steele was good—but he had no edge. He was wholesome showbiz—the kind of rock ‘n’ roll singer mothers adored. He did stage shows, TV light entertainment shows and even made a movie with Benny Hill. Then came Marty Wilde, Billy Fury, Duffy Power, Vince Eager and Dickie Pride. Each one of these acts was managed by Larry Parnes, a pop impresario and manager known as the “Beat Svengali.” Parnes created his own homegrown roster of rock ‘n’ roll acts. He produced their records, booked their gigs and made a helluva lot of money. His stars? Not so much. Most of his singers never received any royalties—Parnes was able to do this by having power of attorney over his acts.

The fans screamed. The records sold. But the kids still craved real American rock ‘n’ roll stars. Bill Haley and the Comets toured—but they were old and not so hip. Buddy Holly hit it big with a tour in 1958. But when Holly died in a plane crash not long after, most American rockers weren’t so keen on flying to the UK to tour. Then came Gene Vincent. Finally the British fans would find their replacement for Elvis Presley.

Gene Vincent had the bad boy rep. He looked like trouble. He was known for trouble. He was said to have wrecked his leg in a bike crash which left him wearing a “steel sheath” for the rest of his life. His biggest hit was “Be-Bop-a-Lula” in 1956—which was the best Elvis song that Presley never recorded. It made Gene Vincent famous. He toured the US with his band the Blue Caps. He made TV and movie appearances but never quite followed up the success he had with “Be-Bop-a-Lula.” The taxman came after him. Vincent allegedly sold his band’s equipment to pay off the debt. It was the start of a pattern that was to frame the rest of his life.

Vincent was going nowhere fast when an offer came to tour England in 1959. TV producer Jack Good booked Vincent on to his pop show Boy Meets Girl. Good hated Vincent’s look. The singer arrived in his trademark green Teddy Boy jacket with “GV” emblazoned on the pockets. Good dressed him in black leather—leather trousers, leather jacket, leather gloves, jet black t-shirt. and sparkling medallion. It was the image that defined bad boy rock ‘n’ roll.

His appearance on Boy Meets Girl made Gene Vincent a legend. He was booked to tour the UK. Sell-out gigs across the country and then in Europe. The Brits couldn’t get enough of this Yankee rock ‘n’ roll singer.

Watch Gene Vincent on the road in 1969, after the jump…

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment