07.07.09 – Tuesday

Word: koan [koh-ahn] (Japanese in origin) n. a nonsensical or paradoxical question to a student for which an answer is demanded, the stress of meditation on the question often being illuminating

Birthday: Giuseppe Piazzi (1746), George Cukor (1899), Sam Katzman (1901), Satchel Paige (1906), Pinetop Perkins (1913), Pierre Cardin (1922), Doc Severinsen (1927), Josef Zawinul (1932), Ringo Starr (1940), Joel Siegel (1943), Joe Spano (1946), Shelley Duvall (1949), Jessica Hahn (1959), Mo Collins (1965), Jim Gaffigan (1966), Allen Payne (1968), Lisa Leslie (1972), Michelle Kwan (1980)

Quotation: Cocktail party:  A gathering held to enable forty people to talk about themselves at the same time.  The man who remains after the liquor is gone is the host.Fred Allen

Tune: My brother’s been telling me to listen to San Francisco based singer-songwriter Kelley Stoltz. So I’m giving the guy a try. You should too. Take a listen to “Memory Collector” off of Below The Branches.

Gallimaufry: In what was already going to be the biggest fiasco in L.A. since the 1992 Riots, the organizers of today’s memorial for Michael Jackson announced yesterday a lineup of performers that include Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey and Lionel Richie. Scheduled appearances include Kobe Bryant, Jennifer Hudson and Martin Luther King III. Can you say mayhem? 1.6 million people registered for a lottery to win tickets to the late King of Pop’s final send-off tomorrow at Los Angeles’ Staples Center. 8,550 of them won a ticket. British Airways is reporting a “huge influx” of Jacko fans flocking to L.A. Since the lottery tickets were dispensed, winners have been trying to sell them on eBay and Craigslist for as much as $2,000. (Both sites have booted the listing off.) Organizers have explained that holders of bought tickets will not be allowed to attend, and authorities have warned Jackson fans there will be no chance of non-ticket holders to get anywhere near the event, but some are speculating millions of people may be descending upon Los Angeles tomorrow to pay their final respects. I’m pretty sure it’s going to be an absolute circus. And, really, would we have it any other way? The Philadelphia Phillies, who were slumping this time last week, have since swept the New York Mets over the weekend and, last night, beat the Cincinnati Reds 22-1. The victory marked the most runs scored by the Phillies in Citizens Bank Park since play started there six years ago. Looks like the World Fucking Champs might be coming around.  Just ask Jens Lekman if the H1N1 virus (or Swine Flu) is a real threat. The Swedish pop auteur is currently enjoying a 10-day quarantine after coming home from a recent tour in South America. He’s expected to make a full recovery.

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03.27.09 – Friday

Whereabouts: Philadelphia, PA

Word: abrogate (request from Marc Schuster) [ab-ruh-geyt] verb 1. to abolish by formal or official means; annul by an authoritative act; repeal: to abrogate a law  2. to put aside; put an end to

Birthday: Gloria Swanson (1899), Pee Wee Russell (1906), Sarah Vaughan (1924), Michael York (1942), Tony Banks (1950), Quentin Tarantino (1963), Kevin Corrigan (1969), Mariah Carey (1970), Nathan Fillion (1971), Fergie (1975)

Occurrence: 1998 – The FDA approves Viagra. On a related note, someone recently told me that someone they knew was an orderly at some retirement village and that the number of cases of STDs in that retirement village had skyrocketed in recent years due to drugs like Viagra. I know. Not the prettiest picture. But the truth is not always sunshine and rainbows. In fact, most times it’s not.

Standpoint: I talk to a lot of people over the course of the day. I enjoy conversation with different types of folks. As I view it, every new conversation is an opportunity for undiscovered knowledge. There are, however, certain phrases that I hear that immediately make me want to walk away. Below, I’ve listed a few of them:

  • I could care less.” – Often erroneously used by someone attempting to inform another of how much they don’t care about an issue. Literally, it means that they do care. What they want to say is, “I couldn’t care less.”
  • It is what it is.” – Usually used after discussing a problematic situation. The speaker usually means either (a) “I’m unwilling to do anything about this,” or (b) “I’m not creative enough to find a way to fix this.”
  • I’m just saying.” – Constantly used as a weak ending after making a (normally) weak point.
  • At the end of the day…” – Frequently employed to sum up a conversation. Sure, that might be the case “at the end of the day,” but there will be another day tomorrow, right?

How about you? Do you have a phrase that annoys you? Please share.

Quotation: What I have dreamed in one hour is worth more than what you have done in four. Lorenzo de’ Medici

Digit: 21 – In the State of Missouri, if you are under 21 and disposing of empty alcohol containers, you can be arrested. I wonder how many times that law has been enforced.

Tune: If you’re like me (and why wouldn’t you be?) you think that XTC is a pretty good band. It’s a shame that Andy Partridge’s paralyzing stage-fright keeps us from ever seeing these guys live. We’ll just have to watch clips like “Yacht Dance” instead. Enjoy.

Link: Boxee – I don’t use this site, but it might be helpful to those of you with a large collection of movie files. Looks pretty cool.

Weekend Philadelphia (only on Fridays): Tonight (3/27), why not head down to The Academy of Music to take in Happy Days: A New Musical? Showtime 8pm…Teddy Thompson, son of Richard and Linda Thompson, plays a show Saturday night (10pm) at The Tin Angel…Also Saturday night; Projects Gallery’s Obama-rama exhibit comes to a close. Check it out while you still can…What about Sunday, you ask? How about checking out the Give & Take Jugglers at The Central Library? Starts at 2pm.

Gallimaufry: Just to reiterate from a post a few weeks ago: Nadya Suleman is a bad person…For many reasons, I consider myself lucky to not live in Iran. Here is one more reason. I think I’d definitely fall into the category of “offensive blogger”…I can’t decide. When I was Rory McIness’ age, if I did what he did, would my parents be as cool as his, or would they’ve sent me to some really awful military academy? I don’t think there would’ve been an in-between…Here’s a transcript of President Obama’s Tuesday night press conference, in case you’re interested…That’s it for me this week, come back Monday for some more.