The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Sunday, July 25, 2004  

And Not So Crazy About Helen Hunt, Either

The latest weekly Rittenhouse reader poll was supposed to have ended on the evening of Wednesday, July 21. Due to technical difficulties on this end, i.e., my PC, however, voting was extended in Bush-régime-approved fashion, through this morning.

In case you missed it, the question Rittenhouse readers were asked was this: “Who is worse, the more offensive, odious, or objectionable, and limit your thought process not to the inexplicably popular, ‘Mad About You?’” Readers were asked to choose between the co-stars of that insipid television series: Helen Hunt or Paul Reiser.

Now, if ever there were a Rittenhouse reader poll in which I would be predisposed to shout, “Tie, tie!”, this would be it.

It was a close call, but I chose Reiser. Both Hunt and Reiser are terrible actors, neither possessing nor displaying any talent whatsoever, both are unbearably not funny. Both are unceasingly unentertaining.

But Reiser “wins” my vote for no reason other than his authorship of Babyhood.

Here’s a tip, Paul: You’re not the only man who once owned a spermatozoum that found its way to an ovum. And that very, very short “swim” of your spew spawn, doesn’t make you unique. It doesn’t even make you particularly special. Least of all does it in any way render you interesting. (For more on this see, for example, Solomon Jones of PW: Philadelphia Weekly on the subject of his daughter Eve, and James Lileks, of the InstaLinker fan club, on the subject of his pest daughter, Gnat.)

Rittenhouse readers agree with me, though probably for different reasons: In response to the poll, 71 percent of readers chose Reiser, while 29 percent chose Hunt.

Oh, and, Helen, don’t go chuckling into the night. The number of e-mail messages I received from readers who selected Paul “over” you, while simultaneously lamenting your concomitant lack of talent, and the number of readers who wince regularly at your horribly uninflectable voice, ought to make you think, once again, about taking a few more acting lessons.

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