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Ask Wessel: Why don't we use ringtones anymore?

Plus: French fries, Mario's clothes, and Nicolas Cage.
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Every Friday on Dana Wessel answers your questions. Music, sports, pop culture, whatever you want. Have a question? You can tweet them to @DanaWessel or email him at You can read the Ask Wessel archives here

I want to give a special birthday shoutout to the most (only) loyal Ask Wessel reader. Happy birthday, mom!

Q: Confession. I rolled my eyes when I read your thing about summer [being overrated] but the only time I have left my air-conditioned house was to get into my air-conditioned car. You were right. - Casey

I know.

Q: You wake up and open the paper (or in your case, Twitter) and notice one major scientific breakthrough has taken place. Can be anything you want. What do you hope to see? - Andrew

Well, obviously I am at least a half-decent person so I would choose a cure to cancer or Alzheimers or something to that extent. But that is a serious answer and serious answers don’t really fit the vibe we are going for on this little corner of the internet. So let’s have some fun with it.

The scientific breakthrough I would most like to see….


Seriously, how has no scientist made this happen yet? I mean, it’s probably because they are devoting their time to curing cancer or Alzheimers, but can we at least put a couple of our best men and women on this? Think of the increased productivity this world would see if you could stay out until bar close making poor decisions just to wake up with the gusto to run a 10K and cure cancer? Maybe that’s why we haven’t cured cancer. Too much lost time to hangovers. I mean, think about it.

So, in conclusion, hangover-free booze will lead to a cure for cancer. You read it here first. I essentially just cured cancer.

A close second would be dinosaurs. Jurassic Park laid out the blueprint. Somebody find some damn mosquitos fossilized in amber and let’s go.

Q: I am a 29-year-old adult who grew up listening to Green Day and until just recently thought Billie JOEL Armstrong was the lead singer and Billy JOE was the guy who plays Piano Man that my mom really likes. Please dole out a proper punishment for this embarrassing mistake. - Adam

Oh, don’t feel too bad about it. I am sure that is a somewhat common mistake. I still can never remember who is a man and who is a woman in Fleetwood Mac.

I think a handwritten note of apology and a gift card to Dave and Busters for each of them should suffice.

Q: Does Mario have a ton of the same red shirts and blue overalls? Or is he still on the original pair? - Neil

Oh, god, he better have a closet full of them somewhere in the Mushroom Kingdom. Think of the stank on those things if they were still the original ‘alls from Super Mario Brothers? Gross.

Say he still is on the same pair. Here are a partial list of things he has done in them. Fought a giant gorilla, sprinted, jumped, swam, dug through sand, dodged fireballs, climbed mountains, drove go-karts, slid down snowy hills on his butt, played tennis, golfed, played baseball, threw multiple parties, and played soccer.

Let’s pray at least our mustached hero is changing his undies. Otherwise the next game on Nintendo Switch might be Mario vs the Swass Monster.

Q: Why don’t we use cool ringtones anymore? - Alex

Because they are annoying and you are a monster if you don’t leave your phone on vibrate like a normal human?

It is kind of funny though how we all kind of unanimously decided to be done with dumb ringtones all at once. Nowadays if someone’s ringtone audibly goes off they immediately catch glares like they just ripped a loud fart during a moment of silence at a funeral.

Remember when a cool ringtone was a status symbol? The 2000s were such an embarrassing time. I feel like I should cut my parents a check for all the money I wasted on ringtones. I had separate ringtones for all my friends…and none of them ever called me because all we ever did was text each other.

The most annoying part is how many billions of dollars the cellphone companies made off of us by charging $2.99 for 25 low-quality seconds of a Britney Spears song.

Q: Now that you got a chance to run the ropes, have you thought about training to be a wrestler or even doing a bit where you're the special guest referee or something for a show? - Clark

Oh, I would definitely like to go to some training classes. So do Ben and Giselle. We are looking for a wrestling school in Minnesota to shoot a video of us training. I, at least, want to learn some more of the basics like taking a bump and being able to hit the ropes with more authority than I did the other week.

I know my limitations as a man, and know I would probably never able to wrestle an actual match. But a guest referee or being a heel manager to get some heat/distract the ref would be a dream come true.

Q: You're tasked with assembling a team of Nicolas Cage movie characters to save the world. Who do you choose and what are their roles? - Scott

Why would we need his characters? Just send Nic Cage himself. He could get the job done solo.

But this is a fun question, so let’s take a look.

Benjamin Gates from National Treasure - Money Man/Brains: Gates is clearly a historical genius and great at solving puzzles. We’d need his brains and his cash. Remember he struck it big with all that treasure he found in the two NT flicks.

Cameron Poe from Con Air - The Muscle - This was Cage at his most buff. We need Poe in all his white tank top glory here kicking ass and, potentially, surviving a plane crash on the Vegas strip.

Yuri Orlov from Lords of War - Gun Guy - If we are saving the world we are going to need an arms dealer who knows how to get some serious firepower. Nobody better than Yuri.

Randall ‘Memphis’ Raines from Gone in 60 Seconds - Wheel Man - You can’t save the world without having a proper wheel man.

Castor Troy from Face/Off - Wild Card!!!! - As we learned from Always Sunny, every crew needs a wild card, bit*hes!!!

Johnny Blaze from Ghost Rider - Superhero - I mean, if you can have a superhero in the crew, you might as well have a superhero in the crew.

Seth from City of Angels - Angel - If this mission is truly to save the world than we will need a Cage angel watching over our shoulders.

I could have probably found a spot in the crew for every single one of Cage’s roles, but I think I will leave it at this tight seven. Also, because I know people aren’t as obsessed with Cage as I am and about 90 percent of people have already stopped reading.

Let me preface this by saying that I love Raising Cane's chicken fingers. As a fast food option, they are difficult to beat. My issue is with Raising Cane's french fries. Too often they are under-cooked, under-seasoned, and overall, underwhelming. Their french fries are toilet garbage, and it makes me angry. Now, the fact that they are toilet garbage isn't really what makes me angry. Most fast food options are toilet garbage. My anger stems from the fact that Raising Cane's is capable of creating a good french fry, but they simply choose not to. The dichotomy between their fingers and fries is unexplainable, and it shows that they just don't care. Their chicken fingers prove they're capable of formulating a good recipe, developing a production process, and executing the product. What they lack is french fry ambition, and that's something I simply will not stand for. And, AND, they have a limited menu, so it's not like they're spending their energy in other places. They simply choose to put out an inferior french fry, even though they're capable of much more. And that makes me angry. It doesn't have to be this way. It shouldn't have to be this way. It's bullsh*t.

Anyway, thanks. Go B96! Go Twins! - Clarence

This was sent to me by Clarence in string of about 15 tweets. I woke up from a nap to all of these notifications. That was quite the thing to wake up to. I thought I was having a fever dream for a second.

I am not even going to attempt to answer this question. I have never had an issue with their fries, but I can’t argue with a man as passionate as Clarence is about this.

Congrats on submitting the longest question in the 3+ year history of Ask Wessel and thank you for making the end of this edition funny so I don’t have to.

All right, that’ll do it for this week! Let’s all raise a tall glass of orange juice and toast to the weekend! Already half way through June and halfway through 2017. Get out there and enjoy this weekend.

Keep your questions coming to @DanaWessel on Twitter, in the comments section below or email them to

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