01.20.10 – A Wednesday

WORD

providence [prov-i-duhns] n. 1. (often initial capital letter) the foreseeing care and guidance of God or nature over the creatures of the earth 2. (initial capital letter) God, esp. when conceived as omnisciently directing the universe and the affairs of humankind with wise benevolence 3. a manifestation of divine care or direction 4. provident or prudent management of resources; prudence 5. foresight; provident care

BIRTHDAY

George Burns (1896), DeForest Kelley (1920), Slim Whitman (1924), Buzz Aldrin (1930), David Lynch (1946), Paul Stanley (1952), Bill Maher (1956), Lorenzo Lamas (1958), Rainn Wilson (1966), Melissa Rivers (1968), Kerri Kenney-Silver (1970), Skeet Ulrich (1970), Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson (1971)

STANDPOINT

Oh, man, did you hear? Some GOP guy named Scott Brown won some Senatorial seat in Massachusetts yesterday. What that means is President Obama’s health care reform is in jeopardy and Republicans everywhere are experiencing something close to ecstasy. The NewsFeed on my Facebook resembles what I’m relatively sure a group IM session between Newt Gingrich, Pat Robertson and Dick Cheney would look like.

And I will be the first to ask the question, “What the fuck is wrong with you people?”

I hope that all of you who support whatever, one way or another, understand what it is you’re getting the rest us into. What kind of importance can government serve when a society of individuals, all feeling more entitled than one other, basically brings about a scenario in which its elected officials will never be provided enough time to do anything worthwhile?

I mean, Christ. We let George W. Bush do whatever the hell he wanted for eight years and, now, it looks like we’ve decided that one year of Obama is enough. When Obama got elected, I was legitimately excited. Not because I’m a staunch Democrat. Shit, I’m not a staunch anything. All I knew was the nation was in shambles and anything or anybody trying to move in a different direction was definitely a good thing. That’s basic logic. If something’s not working, there’s a good chance of literally any other alternative being a better option.

But not everyone thinks that way. We all want we want when we want it – and that means right now, please. And, due to the fact everyone feels so entitled, we’re on a straightaway path to nothing ever getting done again. Because the reasonable voices will always going get drowned out by the loudest ones. And the loudest voices will always belong to those out there who feel most wronged. Because, adversely, those of us who’re content won’t fight so hard as those of us who are not. And most of us have delineated ourselves as such that we’re on one side or another. And, instead of moving toward a society of free-thinking individuals, we’re headed directly into a big fucking mess.

And for what? Lower taxes? Health care? I’m no idiot. I know these things are important in a lot of ways. But I’m a realist and the one thing I truly know about what’s going on out there is that the more we nickel and dime about these issues, the less we’re grasping the big picture.The more we all bicker about our individual rights and squabble over who’s doing what and, more importantly, who’s getting what, the longer it’s going to take us to figure this whole mess out. And the longer it takes us to find a remedy for what ails us, all of us, we’re taking a greater a chance of having this fantastic situation we all occupy slipping away.

In the long run, one Senator getting elected somewhere doesn’t mean much of anything. Except to those of you who think it does. And, I fear your numbers have grown to uncontrollable proportions.

QUOTATION

It may be that life is only worthwhile at moments. Perhaps that is all we ought to expect. → Sherwood Anderson

TUNE

Yesterday, I announced that matt pond PA is releasing a new album, The Dark Leaves, in April. Check out the opening track “Starting.”

GALLIMAUFRY

Uh-oh. Soon, the United Kingdom might be a lot less fun. That is, if the soon to be proposed ban on drinking games and drink specials at pubs goes through. Here’s hoping that doesn’t happen. Even though it will have absolutely no effect on my life.

→ Just when I start to despise the guy, Jay Leno comes out and gives his version of what’s happening over at NBC. From his explanation, it’s hard to figure out who the bad guy(s) is. This fucking sucks.

→ Recently, at The Critics’ Choice Movie Awards, Death Cab For Cutie performed Simple Minds’ “Don’t You (Forget About Me)” during a tribute to late director John Hughes. Death Cab performed it very well, albeit in their minimalist way, but the video montage behind the band was kickass.

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05.21.09 – Thursday

Word: jabberwocky [jab-er-wok-ee] n. 1. a playful imitation of language consisting of invented, meaningless words; nonsense; gibberish 2. an example of writing or speech consisting of or containing meaningless words ∞ adj. 3. consisting of or comparable to Jabberwocky; meaningless; senseless

Birthday: Albrecht Dürer (1471), Henri Rousseau (1844), Armand Hammer (1898), Fats Waller (1904), Raymond Burr (1917), Leo Sayer (1948), Al Franken (1951), Mr. T (1952), Judge Reinhold (1957), The Notorious B.I.G. (1972), Fairuza Balk (1974)

Standpoint: Thursday is the day I address your suggestions for Annoying Sayings & Misused Words. Let’s have at it.

  •  “OMG” – (submitted by Fred T.) – “OMG” started out as a chat acronym for “Oh my God!’ But, I’m sorry to report that it has snuck out into the spoken word. I think it’s a great thing to teach children to say instead of, “Oh my God!” Otherwise, unless you’re using it ironically (something I’ll always support), congratulations. It’s official. You’re a tool.
  • “It’s” vs. “Its” – (submitted by Cheryl F.) – When it comes to “it’s” and “its”, I’m ever vigilant. Definitely easy to make a mistake here with just an apostrophe (‘) making the difference. “It’s” is a contraction for “it is” or “it has.” It’s going to be a great day. “Its” is possessive pronoun meaning “of it” or “belonging to it.” The bear got its foot trapped in the rocks. These two words are confused and misused mainly due to lack of attention to detail. Make sure to keep an eye out. One of the easiest grammatical mistakes to miss.
  • “I know, right?” – (submitted by Harold W.) – I’m reasonably sure, without my knowledge, a law was passed that every woman under-30 in this country is obligated  to utter this phrase exactly 85 times per day. First, if you’re agreeing with something someone said by saying, “I know,” there is no need to follow it with, “right?” The other person already agrees with you. By itself, it’s not that bothersome. But the way it’s said most of the time can make my skin crawl. I think it all has to do with the 2-octave jump the voice does when emphazizing  the last word “right,” making it sound like, “I know, riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight?”

How about you? What things do you hear or read that bother you? Let us know.

Quotation: Never mistake motion for action. Ernest Hemingway

Tune: I read about Harlem Shakes‘ song “Sunlight” on a friend’s Facebook status update. Great driving-to-the-beach song.

Gallimaufry: Today might be remembered for a long time as President Obama and former VP Dick Cheney will both give speeches on the state of terrorism in this country. Cheney thinks Obama has left the country wide-open for a terrorist attack and will give his thoughts in a speech titled “Keeping America Safe: An Address by Dick Cheney.” Obama’s speech is called, “How’s Dick Cheney Still Alive?” ∞ Human piece of garbage Michael Vick was released from prison yesterday after serving 18 months for admitting sharing responsibility for brutally murdering several dogs. The former NFL star will server the last two months of his sentence under house arrest in Hampton, Virginia. Vick is reportedly ready to join a Humane Society of the United States campaign designed to discourage urban youth from pitting angry dogs against each other in fights to the death. ∞ Oscar-winning director Cameron Crowe understands how to make music work in movies. If you’ve ever watched the scene from Say Anything where John Cusack plays Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” outside Ione Skye’s house, you know exactly what I mean. Anyway, Crowe has compiled a list of some of the best music moments in film history. Pretty solid, in my opinion.

Incoming: Tomorrow – It’s my birthday. But it’ll also be Friday so you’ll get my 3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead plus some birthday-related list. Come back and check it out.