Sunday, November 29, 2009

Federer v. Woods


Not a bar brawl (Tiger, correct?) but a test of supremacy:

Who most dominates his sport, Tiger Woods or Roger Federer.

This barguments comes from Sports Illustrated's Joe Posnanski, who declares it an "impossible debate." (Nonsense: have a few beers and prove you're right!)

You can click here to read Posnanski's take, and go to to vote.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A long, long Barguments radio spot

Allan Handleman, perhaps the No. 1 friend of Barguments out there (second only to Paul and Young Ron), recently had me on his radio show in North Carolina for two hours. What a sport, especially as I delivered clunker jokes to dead air.

Click here to listen. It seems longer when it's not live.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A cleaned-up

There's a new protocol at, with the "best" barguments spread out over the first four pages with the most recent barguments.

How we at decide the best barguments? That's a bargument in itself.

It's all based on an algorithm that ranks the various components of the bargument's performance on the site. First, how close is the vote? The narrower the spread, the more points. Next: the votes themselves. A close bargument with 1,200 votes gets more points than a tied bargument after 80 votes.

But how to judge the rest? As it's set up now, a bargument with a large number of thumbs-up votes and just a few thumbs-down gets a very high score. Having a lot of comments helps, but not as much as the thumbs ranking.

That was the toughest decision when it came to bargument scoring. Because really, the comments are what barguments are all about -- people actually diving into the bargument and making their case.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Submarine versus Prison

One bargument on the site I thought would be a sure hit but is actually very lopsided is this one:

Would you rather spend a year on a submarine or a year in prison?

Submarine is winning in a runaway, 77 percent to 23 percent. But I would go with prison.

I'm not sure people are really grasping life in a sub: you're in this cramped tube 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, never seeing the sun, or getting outside or having any hope of leaving. Prison, you've got the mess hall and the yard and visitors... Sharing a cell and an open-air toilet with someone WOULD be rough, and there's the occasional shivving and worse...

But I think I'd go insane quicker on a sub. If I had to pick life in prison or life in a sub, I'd go with a sub.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Duke v. Carolina

Matthew called into the Alan Handelman show just a second ago (I'm still on the air while typing this) and gave a great Bargument:

What's the best rivalry in sports?

Matthew picked the headline match-up in basketball.

(By the way, no one is getting my jokes on this show. Someone called in to say the David Spade commercial where he's inserted into a Tommy Boy scene with Chris Farley was the worst commercial on tv. I said: Remember, David Spade leeched off Farley throughout his career, why not in death? SILENCE.)

Friday, September 4, 2009

To Paul and Young Ron Listeners

The answer you seek is on Page 87... You CAN win...

Monday, July 13, 2009

Shaping young minds...

The sports show for a high school video channel borrows a bargument for a commercial. The borrowing starts at :15.

Not the best banter ever captured on You Tube, but one of only two searches that pops up for "bargument" on the site, so we're a fan.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

"Instant conversation starter"

So says the guys at this radio station, which had some fun with the other day. Lots of traffic to the site, so thanks guys.

Read the feed here.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

No Jeers for the Barguments App

Just Another iPhone Blog gave a nice little review of the Barguments iPhone App the other day. There were some gripes, of course, and I actually agree. The website isn't very compatible with the iPhone screen, and we'll work on that... But if the commentary about the app itself were translated into symbols, I think it would be an upward pointing thumb joined by an identical upward pointing thumb...

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Bargu-app drops today

For just 99 cents, you can have 150 new barguments. (Oh, you'll also have to spend about $300 on an iPhone if you don't have one already.) I was playing with the Barguments app this morning and it's fun. Like the book, but with shaking and sound effects. Screen capture to follow. You can click here and buy it for your touch Ipod.

Monday, May 11, 2009 has a little sports Bargument going on: Which NFL rules would you change? One guy wans to revive endzone dances. Headline: Bring back the Ickey shuffle.

I once interviewed Ickey at party when the Super Bowl was in Miami two years ago. I was doing a story on corporate parties hiring NFL alums like Ickey to play golf and schmooze with clients during the big week. I asked him his fee. I think he said $10,000. I then asked if the Ickey Shuffle was extra. It was.

Click here and participate in the Post bargument.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Jockeys don't count

Doing some research for the Barguments iPhone App (set aside 99 cents now!) and came across this gallery on that makes for an easy Bargument:

Name the best short athlete of all time?

And yes, the definition of short will be part of the Bargument. Does it get measured on a sliding scale-- would significant skills be given more weight or a severely short person, or should you simply judge the entire pool of short athletes on an equal basis?

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Barguments on Google

I know that headline sounds naive -- look, I'm on The Google! -- but I actually just discovered that Barguments itself is on Google Books. That is, you can read pages from the book. Now, this isn't a particularly long book, so Google is giving away quite a bit here. But it's pretty cool. Take a look, then do the right thing and order one.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

CNBC throws out a random bargument

For some reason, Chuck Norris is interviewing Michael Eisner on CNBC. I couldn't bear to watch and figure out why the online segment is headlined by this bargument:

Who would win in a fight between Chuck Norris and Bruce Lee?

I don't think even die-hard Republicans are going to bet against Lee on that one.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Left-handed Whoppers

Burger King has a knack for pranks: remember the meat-scented body spray it revealed a few months ago, which prompted tons of stories by tut-tutting reporters amazed at the new low. (The best jokes are ones the media report on but don't get.)

Burger King lands low in this great list of all-time April Fool's Day pranks. I think it deserves higher billing. To actually have customers show up at Burger King asking for left-handed Whoppers? Brilliant.

Check it out here.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Woody or Coach?

That was the inscription the Barguments Blog used for the copy loyal reader, fan and fellow CGSC member Marie Perry offered to take to the world-famous Cheers bar in Boston. (It's really the Bull & Finch.)

Thanks, Marie! No Barguments fan has ever taken the book so far. And I know your authentic Bawstun accent convinced them to give Barguments good placement at the bar.

(I'm voting for Coach, of course. Everyone is, correct?)

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A Bargument ripped from today's headlines

Big layoffs and cuts announced today at the Barguments Blog's day job, The Miami Herald. This includes a pay cut for the BB, which will be matched by an equal cut in fixed expenses on the BB's part.

Which will force us to consider this actual bargument: Would you rather give up Internet or cable television?

To me, this seems like an easy one. I drop cable. You can watch so much television on the Internet now, it's an obvious trade. But it sure isn't as convenient. You've got to log in, you've got to find the right show, you've got to hook-up your laptop in a decent place to watch, plug in the speakers, etc.

I know, I know... watch through an Xbox or something. We do hook our laptop up to our TV, but that brings its own logistical challenges. Which brings us to a frightening thought: our remote no longer having a function.... We've grown so close.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Obama Bush hug -- Classy or Annoying?

One milestone seems to have been missed this week among all the pomp, circumstance and history: America's first post-inaugural presidential hug. When President Obama wrapped his arms around former President George W. Bush's back for a quick squeeze, it marked the first time that history has recorded more than an emotional handshake between president and predecessor.

This captures a trend that's always bothered me -- guys shifting from handshake greetings to hug greetings. It's a quick hug, I know, sort of a slap on the back. But still -- it's too much. Family and long-lost friends? Fine. But for a friend you saw just a week or a month ago? When did a handshake not become enough for that?
And not everyone qualifies for it, making it even more awkward when you're greeting a group. So the close friend gets a hug, but what do you with the fairly regular acquaitance who's standing next to him? Upgrade to the hug, or make his lower-tier status clear by switching to the shake?

These are protocol questions regular guys face regulary, and now it's reached the presidential level. This may have been Barack Obama's first serious mistake in office.