Monday, March 03, 2008

Idle threat of the week

While the Idle Threat of the Week can be safely referred to as an institution, it is still a relatively young one, meaning the panel of judges weren't around to recognize some of the more classic idle threats of modern history; ranging from polyester's challenge to cotton, to any Italian leader's assurance that his footwear shaped nation would pull its weight in a military alliance.

But occasionally, through a fluke of non-disclosure, an idle threat from the past becomes eligible for the weekly award.

One of the most notorious events of the sixties was a free festival the Rolling Stones organized at Altamont Speedway in California. It was billed as the Woodstock of the West, but instead of the muddy good vibes of its East Coast counterpart, Altamont was marred by death and violence.

The Stones' decision to put the Hells Angels in charge of the concert's security was roundly criticized, and Mick Jagger, in a moment of lucidity, declared he would not be working with the motorcycle gang in the future.

It turns out the Angels didn't take this slight lightly. According to a soon-to-be aired BBC documentary the Angles decided to get Jagger back by assassinating him at his beach front home in the Hamptons. Perhaps worried about the Long Island traffic, the Angels decided to hit Jagger from the sea. But it wasn't long after they left shore that their boat was hit by a storm, and the three would-be assassins were tossed overboard.

A motorcycle gang launching an amphibious assassination attempt on one of the world's most famous men? It's the stuff of a bizzaro Bond movie. Assuming it is true, anything that ridiculous needs to be recognized, and the Hells Angles make the improbable 39 year swim to Idle Threat of the Week for February 25th to March 2nd.

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