When a gifted artist like Joaquin Phoenix or Angelina Jolie toys around with retiring, it's like, who do you think you are, Ludwig Wittgenstein?
The one star who better not go there, and he won't, is Thom Yorke. Headlines are increasingly shocking these days. If you wanted to play a cruel joke, here are the places to yell: "Thom Yorke is Retiring." (He's totally not!)
1) KDVS -- the college radio station of my alma mater, UC Davis. In fact, if you yelled this on any college radio station, the rest of the country will get the news in roughly three hours, maybe sooner. Could lead to class disruption via campus-wide rallies, candlelight vigils, and protests in the form of drum circles.
2) A bike lane in Portland, OR -- Bike friendly capital of the world Portland will spread that news so fast, turning commuters into Paul Revere. There's sure to be a "Critical Mass" ride to try to stop him.
3) Chris Martin's studio -- so you can hear the pressure release like the world's largest deflating hot air balloon. It could be fatal when you tell him it's just a joke.
4) Naomi Klein's brain. She must be a huge fan of Yorke since he cites her No Logo and his band almost named Kid A after that book. She would in no doubt reenact that scene from La Bamba where they find out the plane carrying Ritchie, the Big Bopper, and Buddy Holly crashed.
5) Bonnaroo: Those people paid a lot of money and made a lot of effort to locate Manchester, Tennessee and live there for four days like Nature Boy. Not only would the fake-news be heartbreaking, it could turn the massive music fest into the next Jonestown. Icky!
4) Harvey Weinstein's bathroom. He will call dibs on the Yorke biopic when Tim Burton should have it, or Lars von Trier.
3) My friend Sean's house or place of work. (See "Naomi Klein's brain" for reason why).
2) SXSW -- The Austin music/film/digital media festival is a hive of Twitter activity. Unfortunately anyone who can't be there will be scraping their news from Julia Allison's Twitter stream. Next thing you know it's on the evening news.
1) Tim Geithner's office. The man has enough problems.
The one place you could yell it is Iceland, let Sigur Ros know if they ever had a chance of touring American stadiums, getting Yorke out of the way could be it. Not that they would want that or be particularly thrilled.