Asawin Suebsaeng

Asawin Suebsaeng

Reporter

Asawin Suebsaeng is a reporter at the Washington, DC, bureau of Mother Jones. He has also written for The American Prospect, the Bangkok Post, and Shoecomics.com.

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A graduate of Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Penn., Asawin came back to DC with hopes of putting his flimsy Creative Writing major, student newspaper tenure, and interest in human rights and political chicanery to some use. He started cutting his teeth at F&M's student-run weekly, The College Reporter, serving as editor in chief. He has interned at The American Prospect, been a reporter for the Bangkok Post, and scribbled for ShoeComics.com. His favorite movie is either Apocalypse Now or Pirahna 3D, depending on the day or mood.

This Is How Ringo Starr Got Involved With the New "Powerpuff Girls" Special

| Mon Jan. 20, 2014 1:39 PM PST

Earlier this month, you might have heard the latest song by ex-Beatle and former NORAD Santa tracker Ringo Starr. It's a new track he recorded for (of all things) The Powerpuff Girls, a beloved Cartoon Network series about three adorable little girls with superpowers and their professor father.  The show ended its original run nine years ago, but an all-new special episode, titled The Powerpuff Girls: Dance Pantsed, is set to air on Monday night. Starr guest-stars as a mathematician named Fibonacci Sequins (click here to check out his cartoon look), and recorded "Wish I Was a Powerpuff Girl" for an animated music video (which you can watch below).

The A.V. Club called the video "trippy." BuzzFeed dubbed the tune "the most adorable song." And Rolling Stone reported that the "video, if nothing else, proves that the experimental Sixties spirit still shines bright."

This isn't the first time The Powerpuff Girls has been associated with The Beatles. The episode "Meet the Beat Alls," which follows a villainous supergroup's reign of terror, is packed full of Beatles references. But how exactly did the former Beatles drummer end up playing a part in The Powerpuff Girls? Well, according to Dave Smith (who directed the new episode and served as a storyboard artist during the show's initial run), it took some convincing—and it almost didn't happen.

"Brian Miller, who runs Cartoon Network in Los Angeles, came up to us one day and said that he's one degree separated from Ringo Starr, and asked us if we wanted to reach out to him for a role," Smith says. "We thought Ringo Starr would be fantastic as the mathematician. So we came up with a character design and sent Ringo a brief synopsis of the show and the characters he could play. And he politely declined."

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Study Says Comedians Have Psychotic Personality Traits—Here's What Some Comedians Have To Say About That

| Fri Jan. 17, 2014 4:44 PM PST

If you've ever seen footage of comedian Bill Hicks taking on a heckler, you might have thought to yourself, "Wow, that was pretty psychotic."

Well, according to a recent study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, you weren't that far off. For the study, which is titled, "Psychotic traits in comedians," researchers recruited 523 comedians (404 male and 119 female, most of whom were amateurs) from the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom. The researchers determined that comedians scored significantly higher on four types of psychotic personality traits compared to a control group of individuals who had non-artistic jobs. The study focuses on two major categories of psychosis—bipolar disorder and schizophrenia—and examines impulsive non-conformity.

"The results of this study substantially confirmed our expectation that comedians would behave like other creative groups in showing a high level of psychotic personality traits," the authors wrote. "They did so across all the domains sampled by the questionnaire we used, from schizoid and schizophrenic-like characteristics through to manic-depressive features."

Watch Bruce Springsteen and Jimmy Fallon Slam Chris Christie in "Born to Run" Parody

| Wed Jan. 15, 2014 9:01 AM PST

On Tuesday, Bruce Springsteen stopped by NBC's Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, where he helped deliver a scathing comic critique of New Jersey governor Chris Christie. Springsteen and host Jimmy Fallon sang and played and duet of "Gov. Christie Traffic Jam," an original parody of Springsteen's classic "Born to Run." (Watch above.)

The lyrics take aim at the Christie administration Bridgegate scandal, and include lines about the lane closure being a "bitch slap" to state Democrats, and how Gov. Christie's press conference last week was longer than a Springsteen concert.

"You're killing the working man who's stuck in the Gov. Chris Christie Fort Lee, New Jersey, traffic jam!" Springsteen and Fallon belt out.

The governor's office did not respond to a request for comment on Springsteen and Fallon's joint indictment of his administration—but it's not hard to imagine that Christie would feel a little stung by it. Christie is a huge fan of Springsteen and has clearly yearned for The Boss to be his friend. The Jersey-born rock star is a staunch liberal and only recently embraced (literally) the Republican governor in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Fallon and Christie also have a history. The governor appeared on Fallon's show last year to "slow jam" the news (in a bit that included a reference to "Born to Run"), and to participate in a gag about his weight.

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