January 19th, 2012

word

swivet [swiv-it] n. a state of nervous excitement, haste or anxiety; flutter: I was in such a swivet that I could hardly speak.

birthday

Due to yesterday’s Wikipedia blackout over SOPA and PIPA, I won’t be providing people’s birthdays today. Yeah, government is rocking it.

standpoint

So I haven’t been posting. I don’t really have an excuse worth submitting.

Also, I don’t really have a clear standpoint today. But I’m going to share some thoughts I’ve been having and you can deem them a waste of your time or not and let me know after you’re done.

→ The GOP Presidential candidates. Shit. You guys made a huge fucking mistake when you ceased being fun. Bring back Herman Cain and Michele Bachmann because the rest of you guys are sort of hateful and boring. And, c’mon, it’s gonna be Romney. And he’s gonna lose to Obama. And everyone’s gonna spend four more years bitching. I think this is something that, besides those of you who are hoping against hope, we should all just agree on.

→ On a side note, if you GOP clowns are looking to actually back someone I’d be interested in your bringing your very own Jimmy McMillan into these debates. An “exquisitely bearded 64-year old ex-postal worker” who “is no stranger to controversies?” The American public deserves to know more.

Rick Santorum is actually still in the race. Seriously? What the fuck, people? Are there still people out there who believe in what Santorum has to say? Thinly veiled racist and homophobic statements? Rick Santorum embodies the exact opposite direction this country needs to go in. If you disagree with me on that, I encourage you to drive off a fucking bridge. Seriously. If you even know how to use the internet, click on Google Maps, find the nearest bridge and step on the gas pedal. (And, Fox News has once again nailed it right on the head with this superb article that means absolutely nothing to anyone. Great job, Dan Gainor.) See what I did there with all the links? Pretty clever, right? Here’s another.

→ On a lighter note, I think I’m finally coming around to The Office without Steve Carell. Maybe I should’ve put that one first.

quotation

What other people think of me is none of my business. ↔ Gary Oldman

tune

If shown this video to about a dozen people and about eleven of them loved. (The one exception was my good friend Joe who wondered if there was something wrong with me.) Joe’s objections aside, I think this song, and accompanying video is one of the best things I’ve heard in quite some time. Here’s “Losers” from The Belle Brigade.

gallimaufry

→ I wonder if, because of all this social networking, celebrities get pissed at each other when shit like this happens. Will Peyton Manning say something to Rob Lowe the next time their paths cross?

→ Yesterday, while painting a hallway, I listened to NPR’s interview with Nicholas Money and everything he had to say about mushrooms. It didn’t strike me until I was writing this that Samantha and I struggled over which mushroom pizza to order last night at Arpeggio’s. I guess Mr. Money’s description of various fungi didn’t make a dent. Also, if you’re thinking about dining at Arpeggio’s, seriously consider take-out. I’ve gotten better service at 3am from a strung-out diner waitress. Food was good, though.

→ Hey, if Francesco Schettino, the captain of the Costa Concordia says he “tripped” into a lifeboat, than I’m gonna take his word for it. I mean, it’s just too awful an excuse to not be true.

December 7th, 2011

word

weald [weeld] n. wooded or uncultivated country

birthday

Eli Wallach (1915), Ted Knight (1923), Noam Chomsky (1928), Tom Waits (1949), Larry Bird (1956), C. Thomas Howell (1966), Damien Rice (1973)

standpoint

I’m not breaking new ground here when I state that, Eric Bolling, the host of Fox Business Network’s Follow The Money, is a complete fucking idiot. Like most everyone associated with FoxNews, he’s just an antiquated windbag promoting an absurd agenda and not to be taken seriously.

But this segment is not only ridiculous, it’s mostly pathetic.

It would be easy to pick this video apart and shine a light on why everything Bolling, Dan Gainor and Andrea Tantaros said is just the worst kind of bullshit journalism, but I’m trusting that, after viewing it, you’ll see exactly why people like this are a problem.

If you don’t see it, I’m sorry, but you’re a dipshit.

For Christ’s sake, it’s The Muppets.

quotation

The past is our definition. We may strive, with good reason, to escape it, or to escape what is bad in it, but we will escape it only by adding something better to it. ↔ Wendell Berry

tune

This is one of the greatest videos I’ve seen in the past couple of weeks. It’s Leslie David Baker, better known as Stanley from The Office, in a real music video for a real song he made.

gallimaufry

Michele Bachmann‘s presidential campaign is often laughable. But this is absolutely awesome. Way to go, little man.

Alec Baldwin may be a funny mofo but he’s definitely a crazy one, as well. Or maybe he’s just really competitive when it comes to Words with Friends.

→ Yeah, this country got lots of shit wrong with it and none of it looks like it’s getting fixed anytime soon so, sure, why not dick around with China? Makes sense to me.

07.25.11 – a monday

word

flivver [fliv-er] n. 1. Older Slang. an automobile, especially one that is small, inexpensive and old 2. Slang. something of unsatisfactory quality or inferior grade

birthday

Thomas Eakins (1844), Estelle Getty (1923), Matt LeBlanc (1967), Brad Renfro (1982)

standpoint

So I’m sure you’re all tiring of my excuses (or lack thereof) for not updating as much as we’ve all grown accustomed. But shit just keeps getting in the way. For instance, last week I wrenched my back due to an unfortunate sneeze (lame, I know) and it was really all I could do to get up and down the stairs for a day or two.

But here’s some stuff I was concentrating/obsessing on while I was laid up.

→ I’m off the whole James Spader appearance on the season finale of The Office for the time being (almost). My latest thing is Conan O’Brien and “It looks good!” I’ve been annoying everyone with it, especially my exceedingly patient girlfriend who I’m assuming understands I just need to get it out of my system. Here’s a sample of what I’m referring to:

It’s positively addicting.

→ The NFL lockout. What a bunch of complete nonsense. There will be an NFL season, people. In the oft chance I’m wrong and the parties can’t come to an agreement, I’ll probably just going on living life as usual.

→ Next year sometime, there’s going to be a movie released, starring Robert De Niro, with the best title ever: Another Bullshit Night in Suck City. Come on, you know you’re curious.

→ Last, and I guess most important, I was reading about the US debt ceiling talks between John Boehner and President Obama breaking down and now it seems that both the Republican and Democratic parties are prepping for action. And it made me think of the term cluster fuck which was originally a military term used to describe a situation in which there were too many officers involved in solving a problem that basically required only one clear cut decision.  If you’re a conscientious thinker (or at the very least masquerade as one) then the time has come when you need to re-evaluate just what in the hell is going on around you. You hate Obama and his flaky liberal agenda? Fine. You think the Republican party is comprised of close-minded gasbags? Fine. You have the sneaking suspicion that maybe Ralph Nader wasn’t batshit crazy? Fine (maybe). Whichever way you lean or don’t, it’s essentially defunct nowadays. It’s paramount that, as of today, we start catechizing the political dogma we’ve been forever spoon-fed and begin formulating a new way of doing things because, and I know this is an unpopular mindset, this shit just ain’t working.

quotation

Lots of people talk to animals…Not very many listen, though…That’s the problem. ↔ Benjamin Hoff

tune

I always loved this version of “Crying, Waiting, Hoping” by Marshall Crenshaw from the Lou Diamond Phillips‘ classic film, La Bamba.

gallimaufry

→ Everyone always said that they could see it coming but it doesn’t make the death of 27 year old Amy Winehouse any less tragic. Rest in peace, troubled soul.

→ I’m pretty sure the only person dismayed by this is Sarah Palin. Christ, could she be more laughable?

→ Looks like my chance purchase of Washed Out’s Within and Without created quite a buzz. I mean, it could just be a coincidence that Ernest Greene‘s album has taken off into the stratosphere since I wrote about it on this very blog last week but I wouldn’t be shocked if there’s all ready a thank you letter headed my way.

07.08.11 – a friday

word

adumbrate [a-duhm-breyt, aduhm-breyt] v. 1. to produce a faint image or resemblance of; to outline or sketch 2. to foreshadow; prefigure 3. to darken or conceal partially; overshadow

birthday

John D. Rockefeller (1839), Nelson A. Rockefeller (1908), Jerry Vale (1932), Jeffrey Tambor (1944), Wolfgang Puck (1949), Anjelica Huston (1951), Kevin Bacon (1958), Toby Keith (1961), Billy Crudup (1968), Beck (1970)

standpoint

I don’t normally post on Fridays, especially during the summer. The reason for that loose guideline is I feel most of you come here when you’re bored at work or bored at home or just simply bored in general and, of the five-day work week, Friday is the least boring and, in the summer, lots of you don’t work on Fridays at all. (The last few sentences were pretty much all conjecture.)

But I’m posting here on this particular Friday because I’m in the mood to do a little braindump. It’s mostly inconsequential nonsense but since not a lot of you will be reading it anyway, why the hell not?

→ This is the last time I’ll be bringing this up (on here, at least) until the fall but I couldn’t be more excited that James Spader is joining the cast of The Office full-time. I’m aware this has been a small obsession of mine since last season’s finale but, really, what’s the harm?

→ If you read yesterday’s standpoint you know exactly how disgusted I am with the Casey Anthony not-guilty verdict. I’m equally distressed with these idiots, like Dr. Phyllis Chesler, who are now coming to her defense to help her rebuild her life. What a fantastically shitty facet of our society.

→ The television ads for Ocean City MD featuring Rodney the lifeguard rescuing people from boredom and dragging them to the beach, well, those ads really annoy me. Just because Rodney is a certified lifeguard doesn’t mean I can overlook the fact that he’s essentially kidnapping people.

All right, folks, that’s all I got. Have a great weekend and, as always, thanks for reading.

quotation

The drive toward complex technical achievement offers a clue to why the U.S. is good at space gadgetry and bad at slum problems. ↔ John Kenneth Galbraith

tune

I was mildly enthusiastic about Duncan Sheik‘s latest album, Covers 80s. Yes, I know, I know, the guy is fluff of the highest order but he writes some solid lyrics and is an above average composer of pop music. Since I’m a fan of obscure ditties from the 1980s, I was cautiously optimistic when I purchased the album with a gift card my brother gave me for my birthday. On first listen, I was unhappy with most of what I heard. But tracks from it keep coming up when I’m shuffling on my iPod and I’m unafraid to say that some of them are growing on me. Like this cover of Talk Talk‘s “Life’s What You Make Of It” featuring Rachael Yamagata.

gallimaufry

It’s common sense to think that something is gonna come along and take a bite out of Facebook eventually. Maybe this will be it.

Josh Hamilton probably got exactly zero minutes of sleep last night because of this awful thing that happened.

→ My entire life, I’ve never experienced a single moment in which I felt the desire to play bass guitar. That all changed once I saw this.

06.27.11 – a monday

word

troglodyte [trog-luh-dahyt] n. 1. a prehistoric cave dweller 2. a person of degraded, primitive or brutal character 3. a person living in seclusion

birthday

Helen Keller (1880), Ross Perot (1930), Vera Wang (1949), J. J. Abrams (1966), Tobey Maguire (1975)

standpoint

Last night, I guess Comcast was doing maintenance or whatever and I’m sure it was necessary but it coincided with the writing of today’s standpoint. Alas, the entire thing was lost and by the time it came back on (2:30 am or so) it was too late to start rewriting. So there’s that.

The other thing I wanted to cover is that I’m going away for the rest of the week and so there will be no new posts until after the holiday weekend. Have a fun and safe Fourth of July, everyone, and thanks for reading.

quotation

I learned long ago, never wrestle with a pig, you get dirty; and besides, the pig likes it. ↔ George Bernard Shaw

tune

Josh Joplin is someone I’ve seen in concert probably a half dozen times, all of them at the Tin Angel in Philadelphia. If you have the chance to check him out sometime, then you should do so. His intro to “Wonderful Ones” by itself makes the whole show worth it. 

gallimaufry

Obviously, I think this would be pretty great.

→ I have no idea what’s going to happen with the Philadelphia Flyers now that they’ve traded away Jeff Carter and Mike Richards but I’m dying to see how it plays out.

→ It’s not anything close to Armageddon, but it’s still weird to think about.

06.10.11 – a friday

word

lucubrate [loo-kyoo-breyt] v. 1. to work, write or study laboriously, especially at night 2. to write learnedly

birthday

Jacques Marquette (1637), Howlin’ Wolf (1910), Judy Garland (1922), Maurice Sendak (1928), João Gilberto (1931), F. Lee Bailey (1933), John Edwards (1953), Elizabeth Hurley (1965), Mike Doughty (1970)

standpoint

While I’m sitting here trying to think of something irking me to write about, I’m realizing I’m in a genuinely good mood. So, while I normally get pretty irate about now due to all of the inane crap I peruse daily as part of writing this blog, I’m not my usual inflamed self. But I’m gonna give it a try anyway.

These people stole my idea. Let me explain. I remember when I was younger, I dreaded the first and last month of the school year because there was simply no way to adequately air condition a building occupied by several hundred teenagers. It was always uncomfortably hot. I told every faculty member I came into contact with that school should be dismissed because of what I deemed “inhumane conditions.” My suggestions were always met with eye rolls and sighs. Guess I was on to something, huh?

→ After writing that last little blurb, I became aware that I’ve never been able to spell the word adequate without using spell check. I only spelled it write this time because I cheated and looked.

→ I literally haven’t watched a second of Mad Men. Feels good to get that off of my chest.

→ Everyone I know is sick and tired of me talking about (and imitating) this so I’m posting it here in an attempt to get it out of my system. James Spader is ridiculous here.

Okay, I will admit Catherine Tate was almost as good.

→ By the way, who is going to be the new boss on The Office? Anyone got the inside dope?

quotation

If you cannot be a poet, be the poem. ↔David Carradine

tune

As you most likely saw above, today is Mike Doughty‘s birthday and as I do every year on this day, I offer you one of his songs. Here’s “Unsingable Name.”

gallimaufry

What a freakishly sad way to go. Seriously, the odds have to be astronomical on this one.

They needed to conduct a study for this? Whatever happened to just chalking things up to common sense?

This dog earned a million dollars a year. I’m betting she earned every penny.

05.02.11 – a monday

word

aplomb [uhplom, uhpluhm] n. 1. imperturbably self-possession, poise or assurance 2. the perpendicular, or vertical, position

birthday

Benjamin Spock (1903), Engelbert Humperdinck (1936), Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (1972), David Beckham (1975), Lily Allen (1985)

standpoint

Osama bin Laden  was killed yesterday, roughly ten years after the tragedy of 9/11.

Long story short, someone found out that the douchebag was holed up in some Pakistani mansion, a special forces unit was sent in and, shortly thereafter, he died because that’s pretty much the only option when a bunch of guys are riddling you with bullets.

(I like to think the unit resembled the one from Predator but without Carl Weathers’ character because that dude had his own agenda and a disruptive one at that.) 

President Obama addressed the nation late last night and said all of the right things but there was definitely a look in his eyes that said, “Have some, Trump.”

To say that the killing of bin Laden is huge is a monumental understatement. People around the world have been calling for the asshole’s head ever since he decided it would be amusing to murder a couple thousand people because his outdated culture/religion just wasn’t holding people’s attention the way it once had. It’s against my nature and it feels callous typing this but if anyone deserved to be shot a whole bunch of times, it was Osama bin Laden. He simply needed to go.

Lastly, I’m curious to see, in the week to come, how our completely misguided society and its dreadful “media” are going to spin this in a way that makes the killing of bin Laden, something that every red-blooded human has been demanding, into some sort of political maneuvering on the part of Obama. Oh, it’s coming. And it’s going to be pretty nauseating.

quotation

It’s an amazing disappointing realization to know just how thoughtless and insensitive to other human beings we can so simply and predictably be programmed to be. ↔ David Cross

tune

Sometimes I fall asleep with the television on. I’m human, it’s true. The other morning I woke up and the show Yes, Dear was on and John Hiatt was making a cameo, I guess, singing some nonsense song called “Things I Think About At Work.” I wish it was a real Hiatt tune because it was pretty damn catchy. I’ve been singing it in my head ever since. Occasionally, it’s the simple things, no?

gallimaufry

An hour after the death of bin Laden, Google’s all ready on top of it. Love it.

→ I’m not too proud to say that I got a little choked up watching Steve Carell’s final appearance (for now) on The Office. Judge me if you’d like. I’m completely comfortable with my sentimentality.

Fast Five made $83.6 million at the box office this weekend. Come on, people, we’re better than this.