The New Stuff

Ratings & Rankings: Where Do You Place?


As a people, we crave rankings in this Nation. Moreover, we love being number one. But, how would we know if we achieved first place, made the top ten, grabbed the gold, awarded five stars, or won the big prize if we didn't establish bogus rating systems? Let's take a gander at some of the ones that are currently in place.

I'd like to start with a look at our friends – the wireless phone companies. It's a mathematical impossibility for them all to claim that they have “American's Best Coverage”. How can this be? Last time I checked, the current numerical system we've all agreed upon has only one #1. People magazine, just named Ryan Reynolds this year's Sexiest Man Alive. Sure he's adorable... but who's the authority on this? I don't recall getting a card in the mail to fill out. How do you honor someone with an award for a title that's entirely subjective from one person to the next? He beat out Johnny Depp this year and let me tell you, according to some of my girlfriends, there's nothing sexier than having your own island.

These vexing rating methods we have in action are precisely the reason why I stick to Forbes for my charts. They are ostensibly straightforward providing you with facts that one cannot discredit. If Carlos Slim Helu, has net worth of $53.5 billion and William Gates has a net worth of “only” $53 billion, they are ranked #1 and #2 respectively. Doesn't that sound less convoluted than which celebrity was ranked worst dressed at the Oscars according to trustful sources like US Weekly or Star?

Here's one for you. The other day, in what can be described as a self-aggrandizing ego trip, I decided to search “Jason Farone” in my internet browser which lead me to my IMDb page. Besides lacking an impressive resume to boast, I did however notice my STARmeter ranking is up 239 percent! Sure, even I got a little excited when I read that. Then, that silly little thing known as logic took over my brain once again. So, I did a little research. As it turns out, according to this system, I am apparently doing better in popularity than Cher and Christina Aguilera combined... albeit their highly anticipated and advertised movie comes out in a couple days. In fact, one of them is actually down in popularity. Can you guess which one? It doesn't matter. This, like many fallacious ratings we cling to and discuss at the water coolers is irrefutably off!

That being said, here's one raking that I defy the globe to dispute. As Americans, we are unerringly the people that crave the most ego stroking and need that constant reassurance that we are top dog. If we don't get that, we have no problem creating flawed rating systems and wearing our blue ribbons proudly with a giant grin and skip in our step just seeping with denial. Oh hey... I forgot to mention that this article was just ranked #1 on the Irreverent Literary Chart.

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