April 4th, 2012

word

pyknic [pik-nik] 1. adj. (of a body type) having a fat, rounded build or body structure 2. n. a person of the pyknic type

birthday

Muddy Waters (1913), Maya Angelou (1928), Anthony Perkins (1932), Craig T. Nelson (1944), David Cross (1964), Robert Downey, Jr. (1965), Barry Pepper (1970), David Blaine (1973), Heath Ledger (1979)

standpoint

Sweet and short today.

As a society, we’re becoming dumber by the minute. But, really, it’s not entirely our fault. Because it’s not that we’re actively trying to be dumber, it’s just getting easier to be a dummy.

Case in point, the words being added to our dictionaries. Here are some of the standouts from the new entries: bromance, businessy, sexting, femcee, clickjacking and va-jay-jay.

To be fair, not all of these “words” will make the cut for the actual print editions for the upcoming year but who actually buys dictionaries these days? Are they flying off the shelves? I don’t think so.

Basically, the line between proper English and slang is being blurred beyond recognition. And, hey, I’m far from the most orthodox person you know but, still, it’s kind of annoying.

And that’s beyond refudiation. Wait, that’s not a word? WTF?

quotation

Part of getting over it is knowing that you will never get over it.  Anne Finger

tune

I can’t stop listening to Gotye‘s “Somebody That I Used To Know.” Let me know what you think.

gallimaufry

→ I was just starting to get into HBO’s “Luck.” So, of course it’s been cancelled. But, unlike the dozens of shows I’ve liked that’ve been jettisoned, this one’s actually for a solid reason.

→ This past Sunday night, I saw the movie version of 21 Jump Street. Growing up, the FOX series was one of my favorites. I was skeptical going into the theater and was pretty sure I wasn’t going to dig it. But I actually enjoyed the fact it wasn’t a true remake and there were enough allusions to the series without making it shitty. Not the best movie of all time, but worthy of a Sunday night, after-work viewing.

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December 14th, 2011

word

panegyric [pan-i-jir-ik, –jahy-rik] n. 1. a lofty oration or writing in praise of a person or thing; eulogy 2. formal or elaborate praise

birthday

Nostradamus (1503), Michael Ovitz (1946), Beth Orton (1970)

standpoint

Jerry Sandusky. Maybe you’ve heard of him.

Yesterday, Sandusky and his lawyer, Joe Amendola, decided to waive his right to a preliminary hearing. Afterwards, Amendola accused Sandusky’s accusers of being in it for “the financial gain” as well as engaging in “some sort of collusion.”

Classy.

Sandusky is going to prison eventually, no matter how long his attorneys postpone it. It’s a fact. Fuck him.

But then there’s the matter of Joe Paterno, who’s experiencing some more difficulties after being fired as Penn State’s football coach for the past couple of centuries.

And it’s sad. It truly is. Up until a few months ago, Paterno was held in such high regard that some considered him to be the most influential person in the entire state of Pennsylvania. And it’s a legitimate shame that the sexual misconduct of one of his coaches will be the thing that, at least for the next decade or so, comes to mind when his name comes up.

But there’s a lesson here and it’s a good one: Do the right thing. When JoePa had the chance to get out in front of Sandusky’s crimes and report what he knew, he didn’t. For whatever reason, he just didn’t. Kids went through unimaginable anguish because of it. And all of Paterno’s great accomplishments, and there were a lot of them, were not so great when weighed against his decision to do absolutely nothing.

quotation

The point of philosophy is to start with something so simple as not to seem worth stating, and to end with something so paradoxical that no one will believe it. ↔ Bertrand Russell

tune

I don’t know much about Seryn but I’m liking what I’m hearing from them so far. Check out “We Will All Be Changed.”

gallimaufry

→ What started out as a pretty strong effort, the GOP presidential race has become a laughing stock.

→ Despite some cloud coverage, I actually witnessed a little bit of the Geminid Meteor Shower last night. Good stuff.

→ If you’re wondering what I’ll be doing at 10pm tonight, wonder no more. I’ll be watching the first installment of HBO’s 24/7 Flyers/Rangers: Road to the NHL Winter Classic.

December 12th, 2011

word

satori [suhtawr-ee, –torh-ee] n. Zen. sudden enlightenment

birthday

John Jay (1745), Frank Sinatra (1915), Bob Barker (1923), Ed Koch (1924), Dionne Warwick (1940), Grover Washington, Jr. (1943), Mädchen Amick (1970)

standpoint

There’s no new standpoint today. Blame my roommate Dan who recently bought the entire series DVD collection of the HBO series Deadwood. I’m officially addicted.

quotation

If music be the food of love, play on. ↔ William Shakespeare

tune

I’ve never been a fan of Bad Religion and I’m pretty sure I’ve only really listened to one of their songs. But it’s a great one. Here’s “Sorrow.”

gallimaufry

Tomorrow is going to be another long day for all those sports “experts” who’ve been waiting for Tim Tebow to fail. Rock on, God boy.

→ If you’re asking my opinion, Paste is the only music website that I know of that doesn’t completely suck. I’m currently exploring Paste’s 20 Best New Bands of 2011. Lots of good stuff.

→ I wanted to mention this a while back but it slipped my mind: the Philadelphia 76ers, under new ownership, finally got rid of Hip Hop, one of the most ridiculous sports mascots of all-time. How they stopped children from running for their lives when Hip Hop entered the stands will always remain a mystery.

06.07.11 – a tuesday

word

hackneyed [hak-need] adj. made commonplace or trite; stale; banal: the hackneyed images of his poetry

birthday

Jessica Tandy (1909), Dean Martin (1917), Tom Jones (1940), Liam Neeson (1952), Prince (1958), Allen Iverson (1975), Bill Hader (1978), Anna Kournikova (1981), Michael Cera (1988)

standpoint

Last night, I decided to go see X-Men: First Class at my local theater.

In recent years, I’ve been hearing this sort of statement more and more: “Yeah, I love movies but I hate going to the theater. It’s so distracting. Unless it’s some sort of special effects blockbuster, I’d rather just wait until it comes out on DVD or HBO or something.”

Truthfully, most times I’ve heard someone say that, I’ve been the one saying it.

But I didn’t always feel that way. Once upon a time, I went to see a movie at least twice a month, either with other people or, more often, by myself. It was a nice way to pass the time. But going to the theater nowadays is akin to placing the lens of a metaphorical microscope on everything sucky about humanity.

And here’s just two reasons why:

1. Commentary – Apparently, during any movie, there’s a contest called “Who’s the Best At Following Along?” Not everyone is picked to play but those chosen are a fiercely competitive bunch, vehemently shouting out things like, “He’s gonna get shot!” or “That’s a mistake!” *SPOILER ALERT* Last night, for instance, there was a scene in which a hand was flicking cigar ashes into an ashtray. It was the very beginning of Hugh Jackman‘s ten-second cameo as Wolverine, the central character of the X-Men franchise. But before his face appeared on screen, at least 15 people cried out, “That’s Wolverine!”

2. Cell Phones – The scourge of the modern cinema, it’s easy to understand how moveigoers might forget to turn their cell phones to silent or vibrate. It’s not like there’s several announcements before the start of a movie, asking everyone to check them. I blame the clever warnings. They’re too subtle. Here’s what they should run instead. Still, I don’t think anyone would give a shit. Last night, there were so many sounds coming from cell phones that I entertained the idea I might be the subject of a gigantic prank. My favorite, however, was the guy directly behind me who, an hour into the movie, answered his phone and proceeded to schedule a meeting for 2:30 this afternoon.

quotation

Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead. ↔ Mac McCleary

tune

I loved Hall & Oates when I was a kid. Truth be told, I still dig their songs. They represent everything solid about the 1980s. That’s no lie. The video for “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” is quintessentially representative of the decade most everyone would love to forget.

gallimaufry

Here’s a life lesson, people. This clown had so many opportunities to ride off into the sunset as an American success story. But now he’s the poster child for greed and living beyond one’s own means. Suckah.

The “Jailbirds?” Why not? The NFL is such a laughingstock, why shouldn’t the Eagles be the biggest joke in it? Cue The Longest Yard references, starting…now.

→ Just to make this an all-sports gallimaufry, I’ll let you know that Mark Recchi was never one of my favorites when he played for the Flyers but there’s a part of me that’s pleased to see the 43-year-old not only competing for his third Stanley Cup ring, but contributing as well.

02.24.10 – A Wednesday

word

incursion [in-kur-zhuhn, -shuhn] n. 1. a hostile entrance into or invasion of a place or territory, esp. a sudden one; raid: The bandits made brief incursions on the village 2. a harmful inroad 3. a running in: the incursion of sea water

birthday

Wilhelm Grimm (1786), Honus Wagner (1874), Abe Vigoda (1921), Dominic  Chianese (1931), James Farentino (1938), Joe Lieberman (1942), Barry Bostwick (1945), Edward James Olmos (1947), George Thorogood (1950), Debra Jo Rupp (1951), Helen Shaver (1951), Steve Jobs (1955), Sammy Kershaw (1958), Mark Moses (1958), Michelle Shocked (1962), Teri Weigel (1962), Bill Bailey (1964), Billy Zane (1966), Mitch Hedberg (1968), Bonnie Somerville (1974)

standpoint

It’s the post you’ve been patiently biding your time for all week. Let’s dive into The Wishing Well, a weekly segment where I make five (5) wishes for things that’ll probably never come to fruition.

I WISH everyone would stop using made-up words involving this winter’s rash of snowstorms. Snowtographs? Snowicane? How about all these weather people take off their creative hats and just stick to the facts? Really, it’s all more than a little embarrassing. So quit it.

I WISH every cop drama each had a Det. Jimmy McNulty and Omar Little. Respectively played by Dominic West and Michael K. Williams on the now defunct HBO series The Wire, these characters are accurate portrayals of the way most of us really are, opting to either do the right thing or the wrong thing as dictated by what the circumstances the situation calls for.

I WISH Philadelphia Eagles WR DeSean Jackson didn’t come off like such a thug with his tweets. “On my cali shit that’s why the world of tweet ain’t heard from me…. y’all stay tunned tho got major shit craccn betta believe dat…”  Come on, man, at least make an effort, for crying out loud. And what’s with all the references to “Jerkin’?”

I WISH more of you actually gave a crap about how monumental a victory it was when Team USA beat Team Canada in Men’s Ice Hockey this past Sunday night. Only because I want to talk about it more and I’m pretty sure that, even though she’s a big hockey fan, my girlfriend is growing weary of me yapping about it.

I WISH it was readily apparent why in the world Tiger Woods felt the need to apologize to us about cheating on his wife. Dude, I feel bad for your wife and kids. What you did to them was wrong and you should make some massive atonement. But, truly, the rest of us aren’t losing any sleep over it. Play golf, or don’t. Be faithful to your wife, or don’t be. Believe it or not, whatever you decide, we’ll go on with our lives. Just stay the fuck away from our women, you sex crazed maniac.

That’s it for this week’s installment. How about you? You wishing for anything right now?

quotation

No one really listens to anyone else, and if you try it for a while you’ll see why.Mignon McLaughlin

tune

I’ve always told anyone who’d listen that, despite what you might think of the band Toto, you’re obviously some kind of soulless bastard if you don’t like, even a little bit, the song “Africa.” The other night I stumbled upon this amazing a capella version of it. You have got to see it. I really dig how they use their hands to simulate the storm sounds.

gallimaufry

I was going to wait until closer to fantasy football season to post this, but it’s just too good. Every word of this made me realize how much I hate fantasy football drafts.

→ As I’m sure you are, I’m counting down the days until the release of Permalight, the new album from my favorite band, Rogue Wave. If you need a fix until then, check this out. March 2nd can’t come soon enough.

→ All I’m going to say about this is if this kid didn’t kill these cats, they need to find the sicko that did and lock him up for a few decades.

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02.22.10 – A Monday

word

pejorative [pi-jawruh-tiv, –jor-, pejuh-rey-, pee-juh-] adj. 1. having a disparaging, derogatory, or belittling effect or force: the pejorative affix -ling in princeling n. 2. a pejorative form or word, as poetaster

birthday

Rashi (1040), George Washington (1732), Jules Renard (1864), Edna St. Vincent Millay (1892), Buddy Tate (1913), Don Pardo (1918), Clarence 13X (1928), Ted Kennedy (1932), Jonathan Demme (1944), Robert Kardashian (1944), Harvey Mason (1947), Julius Erving (1950), Kyle MacLachlan (1959), Steve Irwin (1962), Vijay Singh (1963), Rachel Dratch (1966), Bradley Nowell (1968), Jeri Ryan (1968), Thomas Jane (1969), James Blunt (1974), Drew Barrymore (1975)

standpoint

The 2010 Winter Olympics are clearly invading my usually cynical mindset. As of last night, the USA had the most medals at 24 (7 gold, 7 silver, 10 bronze). So far, we’re kicking ass. And, for once, I’m paying attention and, as a result, I’ve learned a few things. Both about the actual games and myself.

→ First and foremost, I’d like withdraw my summary assassination of curling. Originally, it was irksome that everybody at my bar wanted to watch it. I tried to ignore it because customers are quirky in that they’re less likely to tip a bartender all that well when he makes sarcastic remarks about the program they requested he put on. And so I started watching it. While I still don’t think it’s technically a sport, I can’t deny it has a certain degree of entertainment value. It’s confusing to me why curling isn’t more popular in this country. It doesn’t seem to take a ton of energy, the strategy is pretty straightforward and, most likely, could be turned into one hell of a drinking game. Fellow citizens, what are we waiting for? By the way, even though I’ve altered my position on curling, I still maintain the brooms are superfluous.

→ From what I can tell, our country excels at sports involving a high risk of injury. We’re all over any event where the slightest wrong move or miscalculation could easily result in a broken neck. If it entails strapping some contraption(s) to your feet, going really fast and/or flying defenselessly through the air, we are more than eager to sign up. The ones in which we seem to be insufficient are those that seem less exciting. We’re not particularly enchanted with the idea of skiing up a hill. Rather, we’d like to be headed down it, preferably with the help of some rocket propulsion and there had better be some sort of ramp at the bottom so we can, like, do some kickass midair shit, you know?

→ Even in the Winter Olympics, it seems no one cares about the sport of ice hockey except the actual players and coaches. Oh, and also the entire population of Canada. And that’s a shame because there’s some high quality hockey being played right now so if you’re not watching, you’re missing out. To all you Canadians out there, I’d like to send some sympathy your way. It must’ve been hell on Earth to watch Team USA hand Team Canada that 5-3 loss last night. If you’re completely unaware of how seriously our friends to the North take the sport of ice hockey, just imagine if your football team lost in the Super Bowl and your baseball team lost Game 7 of the World Series. On the same day.

We’ve got one week left. Hopefully, our athletes can keep up the stellar work and give the citizens of every country in the world yet another reason to hate the good ole USA.

quotation

Don’t listen to those who say, you taking too big a chance. Michelangelo would have painted the Sistine floor, and it would surely be rubbed out by today. Most important, don’t listen when the little voice of fear inside you rears its ugly head and says. they all smarter than you out there. They’re more talented, they’re taller, blonder, prettier, luckier, and they have connections. I firmly believe that if you follow a path that interests you, not to the exclusion of love, sensitivity, and cooperation with others, but with the strength of conviction that you can move others by your own efforts, and do not make success or failure the criteria by which you live, the chances are you’ll be a person worthy of your own respects.Neil Simon

tune

In honor of Bradley Nowell’s birthday, I’m giving you my favorite son by his band, Sublime. Aptly, it’s titled “Greatest Hits.”

gallimaufry

Andrew Koenig, the son of Star Trek actor Walter Koenig, known primarily for playing the role of “Boner” on the 80s sitcom Growing Pains, has been missing since Valentine’s Day. If you know anything about his whereabouts, get in touch with the authorities. Here’s hoping the guy returns home safely.

→ If dolphins ever gain the ability to walk upon land, there’s a good chance they would achieve world domination. Don’t believe me? Watch this video and tell me I’m wrong. I dare you.

→ Only five episodes into the first season of the HBO series The Wire and I’m tempted to declare it the best cop show in the history of the world, a title currently held by my beloved NYPD Blue.