Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Nothing Libelous Going On in This Sentence

Some people, but not us, because we have no official position on the Church of Scientology, which has almost certainly never committed any crimes, and we would never imply otherwise, are getting totally revved up for The Master, and are hence dying to read all about the auditions held to find Tom Cruise a wife, since the chick who played Nora on HIMYM didn't work out (we would never, ever imply that pretending to be in a relationship with Neil Patrick Harris was the logical next step, never), and then finding links to horrifying Village Voice pieces about how Miscavige's wife, or ex-wife, or dead wife may or may not BUT PROBABLY NOT be being held against her will in a containment facility, because she's probably on a wonderful cruise, having a wonderful time, trying pesto.

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Reginal T. Squirge

This is relevant to my interests.

I saw the trailer for The Master for the first time recently and now I'm just spending all my time getting psyched. I might have to see it the day it opens, which is something I almost never do.

Michelle Dean@twitter

What I want, nay, what I demand, is for Lawrence Wright to come out with his book on these folks already.


@Michelle Dean@twitter This book is really interesting and presents a fairly balanced view of Scientology (while still being full of juicy bits): Inside Scientology. I think I first heard about it from The Hairpin.


The Best Time I (Nicole) Used Pesto To Avoid Defamation.


There are so so many moderated comments on that VF article.

give cheese some pants

just wanted to point out this truly perfect parenthetical from the VF article: "(A representative for Miscavige told Vanity Fair, 'Mr. Miscavige doesn’t remember any girlfriend of anyone, in his entire life, insulting him.')"


@give cheese some pants That sentence is a work of art.


She tried pesto for the first time! Imagine that. 92 years old and she's never tried pesto.


Nana was on that yacht!


@melis True story: The first time I had pesto I was, like, 7 or 8, and it was on vacation and I remember it so specifically because I had just seen Mrs. Doubtfire and spent the whole meal alternating between talking about pesto and talking about Mrs. Doubtfire.

So I guess my question is, who wants a banger in the mouth?


@melis One time back when I was a wee little college student, it was my last day at an internship and my two supervisors took me out to lunch at an Italian place down the street. I ordered pasta with pesto, and when it showed up, these two ladies' eyeballs went BOIIIING and there was an odd silence. Finally one of them said in a grave tone, "Your pasta...is GREEN." As though she were alerting me to the fact that my pasta was covered in ants or my pasta was on fire or something. And I was like, "Yep. It's PESTO." Two grown women, each maybe 30 years old, living in a large city in the 21st century, and neither of them had ever laid eyes on pesto before. The more ya know! Insert shooting star graphic here!


@deepomega Actually in the States we call it "a sausage in the mouth."


@werewolfbarmitzvah Well, that answers my question. Huh. (just off rearranging my worldview, back in a bit.)

dracula's ghost


"I'm not a prostitute"
"Well then I shall let you live!"


But seriously, how do you AVOID pesto for that long?

fondue with cheddar

@Ophelia If there were a pesto-based cult I would probably join it.


@jen325 Yes! I have spent the last 4 months basically eating anything that said it had pesto. And going to places specifically because they put pesto on their food. Like the pizza place that used super fresh veggies and then topped off every pizza with pesto, fresh basil, and cherry tomatoes.

fondue with cheddar

@packedsuitcase Almost everything is better with pesto. That sounds like my kind of pizza place!

There's a restaurant near me (which has closed but there are other locations that may or may not have the same menu) that a fantastic pesto with plenty of pine nuts in it, and they give you a ridiculous amount—your pasta is swimming in it! If I were on death row I would definitely order their cheese tortellini with pesto as my last meal.


You just missed a wonderful call from her. She just came back from a wonderful costume party that the captain threw. She gained ten pounds, there’s so much food on that boat.


She's up to 74!


Arrested Development references. YES. The Master - I hope it is every bit as good as it looks.


There are so many things I love in this article that I don't know where to focus.


@Lucienne I think my favourite line is “Mr. Miscavige doesn’t remember any girlfriend of anyone, in his entire life, insulting him.” because it's just so bizarrely specific!

Nobody's girlfriend ain't NEVA insulted ME!


I heard that the people who made The Master ("they" being the director? producers? actors? unclear) were so concerned about ending up on Scientology's hit list that they arranged a private screening of the final cut for Tom Cruise and other church leaders to make sure they at least marginally approved. I hope this is not true.


@HeyThatsMyBike "Rumors About Paul Thomas Anderson Movies" would be a great party game.

Lee Van Queef

@HeyThatsMyBike Paul Thomas Anderson has said that he showed Tom Cruise the movie as like, a thing between friends, but my general impression, based on things I read in the course of my tireless Scientology obsession, has been that the Scientology high-up folks have actually been pretty hands-off and not at all vocal about this movie.


@Lucienne So true.

@Woman Laughing Alone With Boas - I like this better than what I've heard (which was like, 4th hand and not directly out of things I've read). I don't want the watered-down dirt! Though it would be kind of fun if was full of really hilarious and bad lipdubs to edit out the defamatory parts. "Master, you are {A REALLY GREAT AND WISE PERSON}!" in a scene where somebody is furious and banging their fists on a table.


If nobody else is going to say it, I will: in my head, "Miscavige" sounds like someone saying "miscarriage" with a speech impediment.


@frigwiggin Also, I feel like it should have a D in it. Mr. Miscavige, you're spelling your name wrong.


@Ophelia "Miscavige...is what bwings us...togevah...todayyyyy."

fondue with cheddar

@frigwiggin Yeah, it also reminds me of "misgiving", which is appropriate.

major disaster

@frigwiggin Seriously, though, how it really pronounced? I have read a ton of articles about Scientology but never heard his name spoken. Is it MIS-cuh-vidge? mis-CAH-vidge? mis-cuh-VEEZHE? Something else??

fondue with cheddar

@major disaster mis-ca-VEE-jay?

I've always read it as mis-CA-vige, like "cabbage".


@major disaster Kre-ay-shawn.

major disaster

@HeyThatsMyBike Ahahaha! That is it, for sure.


I've been pronouncing it mr cav-EEGE which for me lends the perfect touch of faux-french-accent class

dj pomegranate

"For their first date Cruise and Boniadi went to dinner at Nobu with an entourage of Scientology aides..." What I would give to have seen this first date. How could this be anything but totally awkward?

fondue with cheddar

@dj pomegranate It sounds even more awkward than a dating reality show where a camera crew follows you around during the entire date.


@dj pomegranate
Does the entourage interact with them or are they like extras on a tv show and just sit nearby mumbling 'rhubarb rhubarb' whilst pretending not to stare?

fondue with cheddar

@teaandcakeordeath I don't know what would be creepier: knowing that you're surrounded by an entourage, or being surrounded by an entourage but believing that they're all random strangers.

I always took issue with "rhubarb rhubarb" because it works fine until you look at everyone's mouths and they're all making the same fish face. Somebody at my school said "rhubarb watermelon cantaloupe" one day and it stuck. I wonder if they still say it.


@jen325 we used to do "watermelon bubblegum"

fondue with cheddar

@Ophelia That's a good one. No hard sounds. Plus it sounds delicious.


@jen325 Honestly the most awkward part of the date is having to go on a date with Tom Cruise. He has always squicked me out. Not that I know him but ugh.

fondue with cheddar

@CrescentMelissa Yeah, he was always kind of creepy, even before I knew about all the Scientology stuff.

My friend met him sometime in the mid-to-late 80's and said he was an asshole.


Or even worse ... finding out half way through the strangers arent strangers! Now Im creeping myself out.

"rhubarb watermelon cantaloupe" has a nice reassuring feel to it. Or better yet "rhubarb watermelon bubblegum cantaloupe".

I once had a pretty intense watermelon bubblegum addiction. As far as addictions go, Id recommend it.

fondue with cheddar

@teaandcakeordeath Me too! Watermelon Hubba Bubba was my favorite as a kid. Good shit.

Vera Knoop

@CrescentMelissa It's the giant teeth and bright, blank, shiny button eyes.

Daisy Razor

Every time I get sucked down a rabbit hole of Scientology articles, I come away feeling all jittery that anything so (allegedly) WEIRD takes place outside of a Twilight Zone episode.

sarah girl

@Daisy Razor Seriously - I stayed up until 3 am one night reading Scientology websites and articles, and I might as well have been reading a bunch of ghost stories for how FREAKED OUT I got.


@Daisy Razor If Sea Org exists, it is the weirdest fucking thing. And also slavery.

fondue with cheddar

@Daisy Razor Not only weird, but HUGE. Which makes it even scarier.

Vera Knoop

@Sarah H. Scientology articles are creepypasta for adults.

Vera Knoop

@jen325 Not as huge as they want you to think. The Voice has a good series debunking their membership claims.

fondue with cheddar

@Vera Knoop But is it still big for a cult?

Vera Knoop

@jen325 Big for a cult, small for a religion, just about right for a highly successful pyramid scheme/self-help scam.

fondue with cheddar

@Vera Knoop Haha, perfect.


"we would never, ever imply that pretending to be in a relationship with Neil Patrick Harris was the logical next step, never" the only problem I have with this is that NPH is too good for Tom by, like, light-years. (And NPH is married and has adorable toddlers with his husband, that too). I would be behind Tom and John Travolta together, though. They could get a nice place in Malibu and raise Lhasa Apsos together. John could wander barefoot around the kitchen and make pesto and grin disarmingly.

RK Fire

@area@twitter: They could host dance-offs on a semi-regular basis.


@area@twitter And take romantic fliiiiights on their plaaaaane

RK Fire

@frigwiggin: Is anyone writing this up in a fanfic? Maybe some sort of bizarro Grease/TopGun crossover?



@frigwiggin @RK Fire They would play lots of volleyball on the beach. Tom insists on taking his shirt off. (John lets him win, because otherwise he sulks for DAYS.) And Suri would come visit to see her two daddies, it's so beautiful in my mind

ETA: oh god, fanfic, nooooooooooo but maybe yes


@RK Fire "Lana. Lana! LANA! LAAANNNAAAAAAA!" "WHAT!" "Danger zone.".

RK Fire

@area@twitter: yessssssss


@area@twitter And make lhasa apso calendars and basically reenact that scene toward the end of Best in Show:
John: We're not gonna sell, just give it out to friends.
Tom: I think we should try to sell it.
John: Really?
Tom: Yeah.
John: Well, if we could give the money to Lhasa Apso rescue.
Tom: They have plenty of money.
John: Well so do we.
Tom: What Shih Tzus need rescuing anyway? You don't see Lhasas straggling around the streets in an old coat "help, alms for the poor".
John: Like the little match girl.


@RK Fire I am just going to dream of Tom giving Suri piggyback rides down the beach while she pretends he's a pony, and John reading her bedtime stories in her sparkly pink room. ADORABLE.


The libelous thing, that's the part about the pesto, right?

lavender gooms

This makes me want to see The Master a little bit more than previously! I leaned over during the preview and commented that, despite taking place during the exact period of US history that I had spent my undergrad and graduate school years studying, I had less than zero desire to see it. But now... kind of interested!

Of course, I was going to see Tom Hardy and Jason Clarke Solve Prohibition, so my taste may be suspect.


I was lucky enough to see the Master when it screen in Chicago a few weeks ago. Fantastic performances! And if you can see it in 70MM, do so. It's stunning.


So psyched. I think being morbidly fascinated by Scientology is my second favorite hobby after knitting.

dracula's ghost

I am literally driving 3 hours to a different city in order to see The Master in 70MM.

PT Anderson forever!
Scientology creep-out information forever!
Joaquin Phoenix forever!

ALL THREE AT ONCE? My dream came true

Regina Phalange

For anyone else fascinated by Scientology (there are dozens of us! it seems):
This Paul Haggis Scientology article is pretty fascinating:

I gotta say, Joaquin Phoenix has been bumming me out/worrying me for a long while now. He's such a great artist, but it's hard not to feel a little exploitative, enjoying art that seems to come from such suffering.


Wow, also relative to my interests! I used to work for a Scientology couple. The whole office was run using Scientology principles. Interesting!

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