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Illegal Operation: The Brave New World of Elections Fixing - Al Uthman

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The Lottery Nobody Wins: The New Draft - Eric Gauchat

ABC of Opportunism: Betrayed in Haiti - Stan Goff

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Greens Wave the White Flag: Not Crashing the Party- Matt Taibbi


Masiello Hair Crisis: The BEAST Poll

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2004 The Beast

These are tough times for Buffalo, it can't be denied. Jobs are scarce, and so is money for basic services, like fire departments and schools. That's why The BEAST feels the need to head a new crisis off at the path when it presents itself. Yes, there is a new crisis looming, casting its ugly shadow over the queen city. Like our ever-dwindling population, it is a problem that grows as it recedes. Yet it dwarfs such concerns in regard to its potential to demoralize this once-proud metropolis.

Buffalo, The BEAST regrets to inform you that Mayor Anthony M. Masiello may in fact be losing his hair. The photographic evidence is virtually incontrovertible, we're afraid. There are no words to describe the sense of dread and sorrow we feel in informing you of this. We tell you only so that we can engage in a public discussion of the situation before events spin out of control. As we all know, secrecy is no path to a proactive solution in any matter, and this crisis is no different. Only an informed populace can arrive at the correct response to such a dire prospect.

The cause is still uncertain at this point. Is the stress of shepherding a floundering city taking its toll on his follicles, or is this just a cruel genetic joke? Either way, it bodes not well for the Mayor's boyish public image, or his ability to escape ridicule.

All is not lost, however; panic is not yet warranted. There are many avenues of remedy for male pattern baldness. There is the traditional classic toupee, but this seems to have fallen out of favor in recent years, probably due to new innovations in hair restoration technology. There are "soft" options, new wonder-drugs like Rogaine and Propecia, which, considering the relatively early stage of baldness our stricken Mayor currently suffers, may be enough to do the trick without risky reconstructive efforts. Then there is the hair transplant, the "hard" option, a shock-and-awe war on baldness entailing relocation of healthy follicles from other areas of the Mayor.

Then there is the simple, yet nearly unthinkable, plan: simply do nothing, and let the strands fall where they may. There are many examples of leaders who have survived hair loss and gone on to great political victory---take our Governor George Pataki, who has been visibly balding for years, or the great Winston Churchill.

Does Masiello's bare scalp bear the character, the will, or the intestinal fortitude required to weather such solitude? Or should he opt for one of the treatments we've mentioned? The BEAST has decided that such a fateful decision should not be left in the hands of the privileged few, but in the hands of the very people our Mayor serves. To that end, we decided to dispatch an intern to hit the streets and exercise his right to interrupt people's lives with important questions about the Mayor's hair. The results are presented is this important-seeming chart.

Our lackey approached 50 Buffalonians over the weekend, posing to each of them 4 options. To their credit, most locals looked past their fear and dug right into the problem with their own suggested plans of attack, covering a wide range of unconsidered options. Suggestions included head-shaving, indecent tattoos covering the skull, wigs, mohawks, and even sleeping cats. Also included in the "other" category were non-responsive answers, such as "don't touch me," and "what are you, an idiot?" We attribute such answers to the dizzying effect the shocking revelation of the Mayor's affliction, and the ensuing shock and denial

Of the options suggested in the poll, Rogaine was the most popular, With "Au Naturel" (going bald) came in second in an unexpected show of confidence in the Mayor. "Transplant" and "toupee" were the least popular, coming in at 8 and 6%, respectively. This could be due to the generally poor aesthetic quality of these options, and their ease of detection. Also, as you can see, the inexplicably uneven divisions in the chart form a pretty cool shape, Sort of like two peace signs in combat with one another. Or, if you look at it a certain way, it resembles a coyote somewhat.

While we think the poll has shed some light on the formerly hirsute Masiello's predicament, we feel that more discussion is warranted before a firm plan of action is put into place. We ask you, BEAST readers, to write in, share your opinions, and help your community to handle this growing problem as the hair recession draws ever closer to catastrophic levels. Together, we can get through this.

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