The New News And Maybe Some Old News Too by Brian Polk | Art by Jason White

The New News And Maybe Some Old News Too by Brian Polk_Art By Jason White
Art by Jason White

The New News And Maybe Some Old News Too

By Brian Polk

Art by Jason White
Published Issue 103, July 2022

A Threat To My Insomnia In No Uncertain Terms

Dear Insomnia, I am driving 22 hours across the country today. In the past, you’ve done nothing but hinder my ability to function as a productive member of society, but now is your time to shine. And if you think you can be cute and pick this road trip as an apt opportunity to take the day off, you better believe we’ll have words. 

I Cheated At Wordle Today

Instead of risking my current streak and living with the shame of word game failure, I used the Google to cheat the shit out of Wordle earlier this morning. While I know I “only cheated myself,” I have to admit that I have no regret and feel no guilt. I’d do it again, I would. So I suppose if you ever see me post about my game-related accomplishments on the social medias, just know I’m suspect. (This is true of everything on the social medias, of course. It’s not just me.) 

One Time My Brother And I Sang The Entire “99 Bottles of Beer On The Wall” Song

It was a family trip, and the five of us were driving from the New Orleans Airport to northern Alabama where we had our family reunions back then. We started singing it as a joke because no one could agree on a radio station. Everyone in the car laughed at first, then just kind of zoned out. Around the 50 mark, people came to and started laughing again. “How are you still singing this?” asked my dad. When we got to 20, the non-singers chuckled once more. When we got to 10, the car brimmed with excitement. At zero, all five of us erupted in cheers. Hither to that moment none of us had experienced such a feat. We hadn’t even heard of anyone attempting it. And that’s probably my most wholesome memory. 

I Would Guess Coders Have Three Years To Get Used To Their 80K Salaries Before AI Renders Their Jobs Obsolete

I’m not sure how they’ll afford their shitty condos after the bottom falls out, but that’s not my concern, so I probably won’t think about it too much. 

A Real Statistic That I Came Up With

In 2020, there were more Republican voters in California (6,006,429) than in Texas (5,890,347). There were also more Republican voters in California than the 9 least-populated Republican-winning states combined. In other words, there were more Republican voters in California than in Alaska (189,951), Wyoming (193,559), North Dakota (235,595), South Dakota (261,043), Montana (343,302), West Virginia (545,382), Idaho (554,119), Nebraska (556,846), Arkansas (760,647), and Kansas (771,406) combined. (Total = 4,411,850). So the next time someone complains that California voters artificially run up totals for Democrats (usually in regards to the fact that Republicans may not win the popular vote again for years, if not decades), kindly remind them that they do the same for Republicans. Also remind them that in a democracy, every citizen gets a vote and California is in the U.S., so West Coasters’ ballots are just as valid as anyone else’s. 

A Fake Statistic That I Came Up With

A full 98 percent of people only believe statistics when they confirm their own worldviews. And when the stat disproves or otherwise threatens their beliefs, they’ll generally regurgitate the quote, “Lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Or more realistically these days, they’ll shout, “fake news,” and say something disparaging about CNN or the corporate media (depending on where they land on the right/left political spectrum). You may even get a vintage, “Thanks Obama,” “Fuck Trump,” or even that new one about that guy Brandon. 


Brian Polk is a Denver-based writer, publisher of The Yellow Rake, and drummer for Joy Subtraction and Simulators. He’s the author of Placement of Character and Turning Failure into Ideology. He likes writing, muck raking, yellow journalism, zines not blogs, cheap booze and punk rock.


Jason White is an artist living in the suburbs of Chicago. His favorite mediums are oil on canvas and pencil & ink drawings. When he was a kid he cried on the Bozo Show. His work varies from silly to serious and sometimes both. Check out more of his work on Instagram.


Check out Brian’s June Birdy install with art by Jason: Accusations, Recriminations, Lamentations, Imputation. Jason’s art can also be seen in the June issue with Zac Dunn’s, The Most Magical Man, and Maggie D. Federov’s Decadence In Good Company. Head to our Explore section to see even more of these talented creatives’ work.

1 thought on “The New News And Maybe Some Old News Too by Brian Polk | Art by Jason White”

  1. Pingback: Salacious Details, Blather, and Other Mundane Chatter by Brian Polk | Art by Eric Joyner - BIRDY MAGAZINE

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