01 April 2008

Check Out the "Cry Me a River" Analogy

From Bill Simmons' latest mailbag:

Q: Just read your NBA "What If?" column. Is there any doubt the greatest pop culture "What-If?" of the decade is "What if Britney Spears didn't cheat on Justin Timberlake?" If she doesn't cheat on him, they don't break up. Justin doesn't start hanging out with Janet Jackson. They don't do their halftime show and the FCC wouldn't be upset about a nipple being expose on television. Britney is indirectly responsible for all the FCC regulations and crackdowns that went into effect. ANd if she and Timberlake are still together, she might still be a superstar instead of a chain smoking two-time divorcee with two kids who's absolutely insane and looks like she's 45. --Eric D., Abington, Mass

SG: Ok, I'm with you, but you left out a few things. First, if they didn't break up, Timberlake wouldn't have written "Cry Me a River," which was really the white man's "Hit 'Em Up." Second, he became a more successful musician in her post-breakup and started dating Cameron Diaz; meanwhile, her career went in the tank and she ended up with K-Fed. Third, if they didn't break up, we wouldn't even know who K-Fed is-- and if you think this isn't important, remember that I casually dropped him into the first mailbag question of this column and you didn't think twice about it. Fourth, she shattered the record for "shortest amount of time that elapsed between somebody being considered a major se symbol and eventually grossing out the American public on an ongoing basis." And fifth, she showed her crotch on the Internet so many times that red-blooded males became immune to it like we were gynecologists.


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