“Grass Nazi” on Penn & Teller Tonight


Anybody got "Showtime"?  Then tune in at 10:30 tonight for the Penn & Teller show, featuring one of our favorite topics – homeowner rules requiring perfect lawns – and tell us all about it.  I just hope the opening line in this trailer "Today lawns are more popular than ever" is wrong-wrong-wrong.


  1. I’d like to see what the Grass Nazi would do if he saw a shopping cart chained to one of those Home Owner Association swaying palm trees planted with a bevy of broccoli.

    Now that would be interesting.


  2. A friend said to my husband the other day “I heard that organic produce isn’t any better than non-organic produce.” My husband replied “well it’s a very complicated subject” and left it at that, figuring he doesn’t understand “organic gardening” any better than the average person and wasn’t inclined to get into a debate fueled by ignorance. When asked where the friend got his information, the friend said “I heard it on Penn and Teller’s show…they had some experts on talking about it.” So I’m really steamed about Penn & Teller’s show (appropriately called Bullshit) even though I’ve never seen it. I’m the first person to agree that “organic” is a meaningless label. And when someone says that organically grown food is no better than non-organically grown food what does he mean by “better”? tastes better? is healthier? is grown in an earth/people-friendly manner? I doubt if he knew what he meant. BUT, when I hear an intelligent person spouting as truth crap he heard on Penn and Teller it makes me furious and depressed. Is it any wonder that huge numbers of Americans believe in death panels? And while I’m ranting, I don’t think this problem is limited to Americans; I suspect that the entire planet is full of people (including me) who don’t understand complex subjects but have opinions anyway. Grrrrrr…..
    PS: I saw the P&T bit on the lawn nazi and it was funny but I’m still steamed at….well, I guess I’m steamed at the media and people who view/read the media (once again, that includes me). Maybe the only truly well-educated and well-informed people on the planet are those who don’t have TVs, radios, computers, or newspapers. What they know is what they learn by planting crops, hunting, and building their own shelters. Sort of like Ted Kaczynski but without the mental problems.

  3. I saw the Lawn show of P&T last week – they cover a great deal and come out anti-lawn chemicals but mostly anti-do-waht-every-one-else-does, Their conclusion is is it unAmerican to have copycat front yards – expressingyourself and individuaility being ultraAmerican 🙂
    On that organic veg piece, P&T are right – IN PART – they had an expert on and he reported studies that show nutritionally organic vs chemically-treated vegs are identical. BUT is that why YOU grow and buy organic for the supposed superior nutrient value? It is not why I do so. Misleading in that focus, IMHO.
    BTW Penn & Teller shows are put on DVD at end of each season – I’m sure you can buy or rent that organic veg episode and see it for yourself and what experts they quote before getting too worked up.
    the P&T BS show exists to skewer sacred cows and puncture long-held myths — hmm, sounds a bit like this GardenRant blog?

  4. Kathy: I should have mentioned that I’ve seen at least a portion of the P&T organic food segment. Found it online. And believe me I get it about skewering sacred cows and puncturing long-held myths. (I love Bill Maher and Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, sacred cow-slayers one and all.) But the P&T snippet I saw fed into stereotypes that irritate me. AND it irritates me that we reduce so much to a bumper sticker: “organic good today, organic bad tomorrow.” Oh hell. I guess I was talking in circles. Definition of a rant?

  5. Well… I’ve long called Kentucky Bluegrass “communist grass”!

    Everyone MUST be the same… THAT’S what made America great…


  6. Wasn’t Penn and Teller a couple of magicians with a magic comedy act..? What do they have to do with lawns..? I have to start watching more tv I am really behind times… been out in the garden longer then I thought ..lol.

  7. There are people who sign up willingly to live in Lawn Nazi neighborhoods. They know this going in. It is up to the rest of us in the free world to build high walls around those areas to keep the disease from spreading. There will then probably be Lawn Ghettos around for a generation or two more, but they will eventually die out due to genetic inbreeding amongst the Lawn Nazi cult members. Problem solved!

  8. Ok..lol I brought myself up to date on Penn and Teller and sadly but very true there are a lot of communities like this here in Florida…very outrageous. These neighborhoods are a little freaky to drive through…every blade of grass is perfectly cut not one weed is allowed to grow every house and yard has a “cookie cutter” appearance…and yes neighbors ratting on each other. I could never stand to live in one of these communities.


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