We watch the Oscars for the stars, or the dresses, or in sad, desperate hopes that streaking has made a comeback. But nobody wants to sit through those boring thank you speeches, not even Meryl Streep’s Nana. This year, though, we can thank the Academy for at least attempting to clamp down on these self-congratulatory blubber fests by encouraging winners to save their thank yous for a backstage camera, so they can spend their stage time on actual speeches — insightful, informative, even funny statements that can be appreciated by people who’ve never even met Sandra Bullock’s septic-tank repairman/acting coach.
The actual thank yous, in case you’ve got a boredom fetish, will be available online after the ceremonies. That got us to thinking: Why can’t everybody post award-show thank you speeches online, regardless of whether they’ve actually won an award? If there’s one thing this world can use, it’s a little more gratitude. If you’re at a loss for words, we’ve included a helpful starter guide below. And, because alcohol is the self-warming lubricant to the thank-you speech’s old-people sex, we’ve also included an Oscars drinking game guaranteed to get you so schnockered you’ll end the night naked on a StairMaster, thanking Academy Sporting Goods for not pressing charges. The Oscars begin 5 p.m. Sunday on KSAT channel 12. Check out my video below and submit yours to jmartin@sacurrent .com.
If Steve Martin or Alec Baldwin makes a kind-of-creepy sex joke about Tina Fey, take a sip.
If Baldwin comes right out and calls ex-wife Kim Basinger a whore or makes a reference to his “rude, thoughtless pig of a daughter, finish your drink.
If a red-carpet reporter sarcastically asks a man, “Who are you wearing?” take a sip.
When you realize Joan Rivers is still alive, finish your drink.
If someone inadvertently pisses off Sean Penn, take a sip.
If someone calls on “Mr. Obama” to “end this fictitious war” finish your drink.
For every tear you shed during the John Hughes memorial montage, take a sip. Actually, just go ahead and have a few shots to steel yourself before the damn thing even starts.
If a winner’s speech accidentally outs a high-school drama teacher, take a sip.
If someone in your Oscar party has an informed opinion about which film should win Best Make-Up or Sound Mixing, or can explain what “cinematography” is, take a sip.
If you know all the words to both Oscar-nominated songs from The Princess and the Frog and you’re of legal drinking age, finish your drink. You’ve earned it.
If a winner says something like, “I know I’m not supposed to, but I simply have to thank the following people…” take a sip.
If you can’t tell what the winner is saying because he or she is weeping uncontrollably, take a sip.
If, after winning Best Actress, Sandra Bullock’s first “thank you” actually goes out to “Lord Satan, who made all this possible,” finish your drink.
If anyone makes an “I’ma let you finish” joke, down a fifth of Hennessy before Jay-Z can stop you.
If Jeff “The Dude” Bridges finally wins his first Oscar, piss on the rug and take a bath with a marmot.
If Avatar wins Best Picture, mail a personalized sympathy card to Quentin Tarantino and Joel and Ethan Coen.
If an Oscar winner sends a Native-American activist to decline the award, eat a fistful of peyote and retire to your own private island.
Remember, you’re thanking all the little, insignificant people without whom this totally wouldn’t have been possible (but so totally would have), so there’s zero chance of you looking like a jerk, even if you begin your speech with some disgustingly self-important exclamation such as “I’m the king of the world!”, “You like me, you really like me!”, or the ever-popular “We did it! We did it!”
If you’re having trouble coming up with an opening, remember that people love hearing how “Webster’s Dictionary defines” various words, such as “gratitude” or “unoriginal jag-off.”
Your agent is, by definition, an asshole, and no one believes he’s a “beautiful person,” not even for a second.
Your childhood was uninteresting.
If Martin Scorsese’s 2007 speech didn’t begin, “It’s about time, you ignorant bunch of dickheads,” yours can’t, either.
That Heath Ledger joke you didn’t use last year is probably still in poor taste.
When the orchestra begins playing your drunk ass offstage, it’s karaoke time.
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