Apr. 17th, 2009 10:54 am
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So I've done some work with some of the madness you've read in days of yore on this journal and reworked it into spoken word pieces. Here's a sample:  My Own Distortions (part 1)

There's several more tracks over at my home writing page

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(oh yeah...I don't watch SNL anymore) What I especially like is how he nails the cadences of the President and yet deftly mashes them up with the other characterization. I really like where Dwayne Johnson is going as an actor these days.

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Dan Barber talks at TED: one foie gras shows us the future of cooking

This is a pretty amazing story.
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From Rolling Stone's National Affairs desk:

"We’re light blue.
The actual Depression is hot pink."

In other words: miles and miles to go. I'm still not crazy about where business is right now, though...
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British clinical trials have dared to try to cure peanut allergies and have found some progress. The method was so crude—building up tolerance—that I'm very impressed at the audacity.

I hate the whole thing with nut allergies these days. I mean, I don't want people dying from something so simple and important to so many parts of the world.
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After three times of seeing this commercial in 30 second form, I was completely enraged. Then I found the NINE MINUTE version and the scales fell from my eyes.

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43 Alumni.com. yep. for associates of the bush-cheney regime.
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okay so now those fuckers are offering eyeglasses—not just sunglasses, but actual frames filled with non-prescription glass so you can go to your optometrist and put your prescription in it. Surprising absolutely no one, the excesses of the eighties are now, of course, considered vintage. AA, your one-stop shop for marketing fakery and your own complete hipster douchebag home kit! Augh! Augh! auuuuughhhhh!
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Streaming footage of the canvassing board

This is awesome. Truly amazing to listen to.

UPDATE: Observe how they handle the votes on these. It's really quite a remarkable example of how "motion-second-discussion-vote" can work as the mechanism of considering the actions of a board or voting organization. It moves the whole process into a realm of strictly business and dispassionate professionalism, rather than every position ("aye in favor" or "aye opposed") being reached at some great personal cost by the person taking it or a person feeling like they put something at grave risk by taking a position. It's very illuminating.

It's something that some of you out there know I'm very hyper about (yes, you) and this is a great example of how moving something for consideration and then deliberating on it can be done quickly and without fear of harm to the person placing it nor the persons taking a stance in favor or opposed. Ritchie moves these things, and then if they are rejected, he puts out a different motion. No harm no foul. You can conduct your business just like this, perhaps at a smaller scale during your business session (i.e. not considering 1600 pieces of business at your average meeting!)

My only tickytack concern is I can't hear the seconds all the time. I assume they must have either a house rule/suspension of the rules in place; that or whoever seconds those motions is doing so away from a mic.

blue glow

Oct. 29th, 2008 02:48 pm
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Obama homeYou been to the Obama website lately? I love that fucking site. It's so pretty, and it's got some amazing shit. I was able to download lists of people to call on the phone, and either print them or sit there in front of the computer and make calls to potential voters (Minnesota nice my fat white ass, you rude motherfuckers!) It's really an impressive website and the overall design aesthetic of Obama's print and online collateral is just astounding. It's the total package. They really have the whole thing nailed through and through, aesthetically.

McCain homeHow about John McCain's site? Holy shit! It's the same site! I blinked hard a few times and couldn't believe it! If you proceed to the main site you can see, the header is a direct reference to Obama's. It's really shocking to see how much the tone is being set by the Obama campaign in every aspect of this race and the impact he's having on the culture (it's still pretty bad out there but Bush has been talking to Iran, there's a timetable being negotiated in Iraq, and I hear they're even discussing whether Camp XRay needs to continue...)

Just to confirm how dramatic the impact of Obama's site is on McCain's, I went to the wayback machine.

McCain in January 2008
McCain in April 2007

For comparison, here's Obama in June of 2007 (quite different, more white in but the O is still there)

and here's Obama in September 2007 where they'd begun the move to the blue-glow background for their stage. I'm just trying to establish the timeline that clearly their campaign led the way in that particular look.

And obviously, it's not the same, but the advantage is manifestly Obama's, who is setting the tone first.
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One of my friends makes this completely awesome
Zombie Pinup Calendar

Now this is a use of fifties attire I can get behind. Unlike someone else we could name )

I have felt like the whole zombies deal is exhausted (and exhausting), not really my thing. But this pinup calendar idea is terrific!
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the mccain campaign is imploding so fast with news of internal shakeups and pundits saying it's "signs of what a disorganized mccain white house would look like" and the Obama lead increasing, and Maliki calling for a withdrawal, what if we were in for a convention floor upheaval? McCain is so weak as a candidate and his weaknesses are only growing as the GOP convention gets closer, and Obama continues to raise unbelievable amounts of money, and September is a long way off... perfect storm time, maybe? Do Rebloodlican power brokers cut a backroom deal to dump the old guy and launch a revolt among the delegates? Could they? Wouldn't that be sweet? Or would it be horrifying? Who cares, I predict the number 270 isn't the sweet spot this year. I propose Obama could clear 350 electoral votes in November. Check out real clear politics' map making tool. You can see their map at the link. THen build your own. I propose Obama pulls the following out of tossup status: FL, MO, CO, NM, NV, surprising VA, OH, MI, and yes, NH. I also propose he flips Montana. That gets us to 352. In my dreams I see flipping Arkansas, Kansas and pulling off a squeaker in North Carolina. That would get us to 379 but that's just dementia setting in.
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I'm a raw milk enthusiast as many of you may know. The taste of raw milk is so much more complete than the taste of homogenized and pasteurized milk. I mean, it's whole, for one thing (you wouldn't want raw skim eww) which means there's cream. And for another... oh it's bliss! Bliss! It tastes like it came from a place you know? On my recent trip to CA where I bought a quart in a glass bottle (and drank it out of a paper sack in the park, no less) I tasted the following: sweet cream, grass, sunshine*, fog dissolving in the morning, honey, brown sugar, clean cedar wood, and right at the end...smoke. Sure, the naive and foolish among you might say "what about milk?" Well, it tastes like milk too, but it's a very complex flavor is all I'm saying! bryant park project has another unfortunate story about raw milk. Why's it unfortunate? Because the dadblamed thing is all about whether or not it's healthy. I don't care if it has miracle properties, it tastes better! Dang!

Also, the hype about it being dangerous is just nanny state bullshit—the only way to safely deliver raw milk is if the cows are pampered and raised organically on grass. Under those conditions, where they're not eating a lot of corn and swimming in their own shit, and being overmilked, you're simply not going to have the kind of low-immune-system, disease risking, blood in the udders kind of problems! But also in the sense that consenting adults should be allowed to eat and drink what they want especially with a product that was consumed that way for many many years before attempting to transport it to cities + industrialization made it so ruinously unsafe. (I am of a divided mind when it comes to feeding raw milk to my kids. let them make up their own minds later) I don't need anyone jacking me up about milk.

But this whole culture aching for miracle cures from our food, just makes me wheeze. It also makes me thirsty.

*sunshine also tastes a lot like edible flowers. there's this one daisy-like flower I've had as a dessert garnish which basically made me feel like I was eating sunshine. it was a bit of a synaesthetic experience. That same taste more or less made its way into this quart of milk I was having.
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Continuing his slide to complete irrelevance, my former hero Ralph Nader (I campaigned for the fucker to get on the ballot in 2000) said Obama is trying to 'talk white'. Ignorant ass peckerwood.
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Those Aren't Muskets are definitely among my new favorites! Here's a lovely number called Star Trek Rap. Forgive me if you've seen that one before. I also highly recommend games conference for true belly laffs.

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But I think we're in the Golden Age of webcomics and that quite possibly we are witnessing the prime of Randall Munroe's career. Like seeing someone pitch no hitter after no hitter. Like season 5 of The Simpsons. Like Y the Last Man. Like Newton before the 1690s. (too far?)

The latest one is no exception. Look, just go read it okay?
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Great articles on Salon.com today:

kids & internet which has this lovely couple of lines
"Kids today -- we're telling you! -- don't read, don't write, don't care about anything farther in front of them than their iPods. The Internet, according to 88-year-old Lessing (whose specialty is sturdy typewriters, or perhaps pens), has "seduced a whole generation into its inanities."

Or is it the older generation that the Internet has seduced -- into the inanities of leveling charges based on fear, ignorance and old-media, multiple-choice testing? So much so that we can't see that the Internet is only a means of communication, and one that has created a generation, perhaps the first, of writers, activists, storytellers? When the world worked in hard copy, no parent or teacher ever begrudged teenagers who disappeared into their rooms to write letters to friends -- or a movie review, or an editorial for the school paper on the first president they'll vote for. Even 15-year-old boys are sharing some part of their feelings with someone out there. "
This is true. Also, if the kids are so bad at reading, who the fuck is buying all those books? More kids books are being written and sold than at just about any time in history right now. More adult books too.

Geraldine Ferraro still needs to apologize. Wow, I never knew her privileged family was all mobbed up. Awfully lucky, don't t you think? The day belonged to our guy though when he said, "I don't think anyone who was planning to run for president would say the place to start is to be an African American man named Barack Obama"

glenn greenwald on the lunacy of the US House.

rise of the superclass misses the crucial point that the super class aren't the only ones who wouldn't mind seeing the borders dissolve. we have our own reasons. Which reminds me of this really thought-provoking article from Reason about worker mobility. I've thought about subscribing again to Reason, it gives me a much needed dose of nonpartisan reflection. They're very libertarian, but I spend so much time being a leftist that I sometimes need doses of that to remind me.

This is genuinely funny, and I'm sure will be wildly inflated by various sides of our culture:

Which reminds me, I've always meant to link to this amazing Bush debate video from when he was running for TX governor. The dude was a total policy wonk. I still wonder sometimes, does he have Alzheimers? Is he on drugs? They say freedom is like a drug. Maybe he ran around snorting so much of that freedom he's been protecting that he lost his tether.
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Salon is doing this rundown of the presidential candidates' spouses. It's pretty interesting. They listed them in order of least to most interesting (and did a pretty good job deciding which was which). I was particularly amused by their nod to the big dawg: Bill Clinton, husband of Hillary Clinton: Well, what is there to say, really? But let's take a crack: First, Bill clearly gets points for answering the "one of these things is not like the other" riddle. He is a boy. The only one on this list. He met Hillary in law school at Yale; they have been married for 32 years; they have one daughter, Chelsea. He is a longtime governor of Arkansas who now runs the Clinton Foundation, an organization that aims to help alleviate the problems of poverty, AIDS and global warming around the world. An enthusiastic saxophonist, Clinton was once impeached after getting caught receiving blow jobs from a White House intern during his eight years as president of the United States. Bill has a penchant for fast food that he's had to overcome after undergoing serious cardiac surgery three years ago. full article

Emphasis added. I just like how you could conceivably write a bio of Bill Clinton and throw his presidency in as an afterthought.

BBC delivers this lovely: 10 climate change skepticisms with responses. The best I think is "Solar variations do affect climate, but they are not the only factor. As there has been no positive trend in any solar index since the 1960s (and possibly a small negative trend), solar forcing cannot be responsible for the recent temperature trends. The difference between the solar minimum and solar maximum over the 11-year solar cycle is 10 times smaller than the effect of greenhouse gases over the same interval."

Apple are you seeing this? want

um. holy crap

At some point I hope to see commentary far wittier than I'm able to produce about today's 9CL strip, perhaps at Comics Curmudgeon. While occasionally I am disturbed by what have been elsewhere described as the "monkey faces" on all of those women, the posing is certainly... daring. Brooke McEldowney certainly pushes the limits of the medium's normally staid approach to sensuality. Unless you count furry sex, I suppose. The dialog here is almost completely superfluous. Watch:

Just about as funny, and allows the reader to enjoy the artwork as I imagine the artist himself must see it. Though I can't help thinking what he really wants us to see looks a little more like this:

This suggests a theory. Two theories, actually. 1) A variation on the MackJ Garfield theory: Remove 3/4 of all dialog from 9 Chickweed Lane, preferably leaving only the last balloon. 2) Remove all clothes from 9 Chickweed Lane. Period. It's what people are thinking anyway.

*(for reference: MackJ's post with Garfield's thoughts removed and the garfield randomizer)

here's a horrifying item about cable companies. Your tax dollars at work. Hey, they got us comin' and goin'!
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So this weekend I got some cynar. wow, that is... potent stuff. ten years ago, I would have thought it completely vile. Now, I'm thinking about ways I can build interesting drinks out of it in strict moderation. It is like a funky Campari and for trial, I made a negroni with it. Might be a little too assertive in the vegetal dimension for me to make a lot of those regularly. I would like to try it in something where I dial it back a touch, or use it at what I'll call—lacking a better term—"bitters strength", i.e., measured by the teaspoon or percentages thereof instead of whole shots of the stuff.

I'm going to tackle the aforementioned Spirit World's/zigzag cafe's Trident Cocktail1 with Akavit, as well as the Bensonhurst I saw in last month's Surdyk's "drinks" mag2 We're also going to try their hot buttered rum variation with the pumpkin flavoring sometime this week. I do love hot buttered anything and now that the weather's turning I think the time is right.

While a straight up negroni, subbing Cynar 1:1 for Campari, came off a little too medicinal for my palate, I think using it in fractional quantities in some drinks could be very pleasant. I'll also have to admit that maybe Broker's was the wrong gin to use in this case, but I don't have anything else in the house to confirm. I will give it a second chance with Plymouth, since I'm not running out of the Cynar anytime soon. But I wonder if maybe whisky also has what it takes to mesh with this spirit. Right off I've got a plan to sub it for a similar quantity of Angostura that I might normally use, in a Dubliner3 variation of the Manhattan. With that earthier/veggie edge to it, I propose it's appropriate to think of a Dubliner made this way as a kind of tribute to the memory of victims of the famine and the coffin ships, a tipple for toasting their sacrifice and cursing the name of Lord John Russell4. I'll try it in a standard and in a perfect version, just to see if a little dry vermouth uplifts the Cynar harmoniously or fights with it5. Anyone else with the nerve and a bottle of artichoke liquor lying around should give it a spin on my behalf, we'll need a good sampling for scientific study!

We had a nice dinner and toast to the memory of Michael Jackson at Town Hall last night. I enjoyed their casked IPA, [livejournal.com profile] mrs_lovett had oatmeal stout. I reminisced about reading the Michael Jackson world guide to whisky when I was a sophomore/junior in high school. I reflect now as an adult that I have pretty much always had an interest in spirits, and I'm further led to reflect that...gosh that's kinda weird for a teenager. But the passages were so descriptive! And it's not like I was able to get my hands on the stuff then. The bottles were $30+, and we lived in South Dakota for crying out loud! Well, he's dead now, and I do thank him for so many lucid and formative passages.

1 for those of you reading this far...do I need so say "hence the title of the post"? yeah? yeah. the trident, same as the link above, presumably the medicinal taste I'm complaining about is remedied by the caraway in the akavit? we'll see.
2 there's some clever 3-D marketing. I wonder who the real publisher of that content is and how many other large stores drop their site-specific content into it for republishing to their customers.
3 I think it's Regan who gave me that title: a Manhattan made w/Irish whisky.
4 May your blackhearted soul rot in hell
5 Yes, this is the point where you go "oh lord, how much more fucking precious is this going to get?" and the answer of course is, "baby this rabbit hole goes all the way down."

uh oh

Sep. 19th, 2007 01:14 pm
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today's pbf is just plain wrong.

also, hilarious.

*edit: on the other hand, it kind of feels like that in the real world. impact-wise.
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Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] rubel I've been reading The Last Psychiatrist lately and I love it. Today's entry is so horrifyingly amazing I can't see straight. And the guy is totally dead on. Wow. You know me, I'm not one to judge, but if anyone makes me feel okay judging, it's the Last Psychiatrist. I suspect that's part of his program, actually--sort of like an inoculation against this degraded, mush headed era of... judgmentlessness (??).

Anyway, [livejournal.com profile] mrs_lovett and I used to talk about a "yoink" game--and in a way it was a little bit fascist--coming up with the most dramatically over the top way to force idiot jerkoffs to stop fucking up their kids. Think of The Simpsons when a character appears onscreen to swipe something--a tasty danish, or Jasper Johns taking Marge's painting off the roof--the "yoink" sound. Actually here's a list, for your edification. You know how it goes.

Well, imagine that sound in those uncomfortable moments when you see a woman grab her kid's arm in the grocery store, swat his butt and say "stop that you little shit." You just kind of want to yoink the "little shit" and run off. Mind you, I'm probably guilty of a yoinkable offense here and there--start the car, drive a block, kid starts wailing in the back seat "Daddy you forgot to buckle me!"; or last week when I (oh lord I didn't mention this did I?) started out of the bakery with Eleanor, make a u turn in the doorway and say "oh yeah, we probably need to grab your brother in the car seat over there before we go." Yoink--especially since I was in the tony Linden Hills neighborhood and no doubt some nanny state soccer mom would gladly subject me to a lousy lecture about the traumatizing effects of my absentmindedness.

Not to mention, if i did yoink the kid in my other example, I'd have to feed the little shit, which I'm categorically unprepared to do. We like to joke ha-ha "joke" about those times when we're about to go into the store or someplace and Eleanor says "can Henry come too?" and, both of us just laugh. "No sweetie, Henry's going to sit in the car and wait... for child services..." Actually that joke (a loose term at best) has broad applications in our private jokebook. "Sweetheart daddy's going to go fix a drink. You just wait here until child services comes." After we put both kids to bed, I've asked Leann, "You wanna go get ice cream? The kids'll probably stay asleep, at least long enough until child protective services come." Leann's probably got a lot better set of examples which I'm hoping she'll contribute in the comments.

Seriously though, read that Last Psychiatrist article. My anxiety about the "in their twenties, both obese" depiction notwithstanding, that is a serious yoink.


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