Before I begin tonight’s lecture about my book, Turning the Tide: U.S. Intervention in Central America and the Struggle for Peace, I must address the elephant in the room. Yes, you read your tickets correctly: this event is sponsored by Michelob Ultra.
Some of you are asking yourselves, why is a lecture from Noam Chomsky, whom the New York Times once called “the most important intellectual alive,” sponsored by Michelob Ultra? The answer is simple: I need the cash because I bought a boat. And not just any boat — a really nice boat. A Tiara 3100 Coronet to be exact — which if you know anything about boating, you know that is a very impressive boat. Fighting the insidious and oppressive sociopolitical machine simply doesn’t generate the kind of income needed to afford a boat, especially a boat as nice as the Tiara 3100 Coronet, with its twin inboard propulsion, spacious seating, and deck-level entertainment center outfitted with and electric grill, sink, and refrigerator, the latter of which I always keep stocked with Michelob Ultra. Michelob Ultra: the night belongs to Michelob.
No, I am not, as some joker in the front row rudely shouted out, a “fucking sell out.” I’m 88 years old, for Christ’s sake. Let me have my boat! I know that my anti-capitalist message seems slightly hypocritical when it’s said between smooth, barley-enriched gulps of Michelob Ultra, but I think I’ve earned a few weekends out of the year to spend on my boat, which I’ve christened the SS Universal Grammar. I’m one of the founders of cognitive science, for crying out loud. If I have to hawk some booze to enjoy my twilight years in the Florida Keys, then so be it.
I can tell from the boos and jeers that none of you are keen on the keg of Michelob Ultra that’s currently being wheeled out. Frankly, I’m not happy that I’m contractually obligated to do a keg stand, either. But you should see the tax rates on boats. I’m paying 10.5 percent of my boat’s assessed value yearly. There’s no way I can do that on an M.I.T. professor’s meager salary. So you’ll all just have to deal with the fact that I’m spending the rest of this lecture riding a Swagtron hoverboard. Swagontron: adventures begin with your feet.
How dare you say this is the worst lecture of all time? I am Noam Fucking Chomsky — I could take a dump on stage and it’d be the most insightful political commentary you’ve ever seen. They named a species of bee after me, dude. But if it’ll make you happy, everyone leaves here tonight with a free TAP OUT brand T-shirt. Tap Out is the official fitness partner of the WWE, and I believe their brand can harmoniously integrate with my book’s themes of US interventionism and immoral backing of Central American military dictatorships — who am I kidding? I got busted for a BUI back in March and my insurance premiums are sky high. What’s the world come to when Noam Chomsky can’t throw back a few ice cold Michelob Ultras with his second wife and go boating?
Wait! Please don’t walk out! You must understand, it’s these docking fees. That’s where they get you. Three grand a month to dock a boat, can you believe it? And then you have to winterize it four months out of the year — don’t get me started on that racket. The upkeep is a bitch and a half, but when you take it out in the ocean, my god! It’s bliss.
Oh, so you’re mad because you paid a hundred and fifty bucks for this shit? Well let me tell you something, pal — hold on, did you say a hundred and fifty dollars? Do I get a cut of the door? Damnit, Noam, always remember to ask for a cut of the door!