November 14, 2011

There will be a happy hour on Wednesday, November 30th at the Field House for The Harvey Forsyth Memorial Fund. More details to follow.

word

pansophy [pan-suh-fee] n. universal wisdom or knowledge

birthday

Claude Monet (1840), Aaron Copland (1900), Joseph McCarthy (1908), Brian Keith (1921), McLean Stevenson (1927), P.J. O’Rourke (1947), Prince Charles (1948), Condoleezza Rice (1954), Yanni (1954), D. B. Sweeney (1961), Laura San Giacomo (1962), Patrick Warburton (1964), Josh Duhamel (1972)

standpoint

I only posted once last week and there was a lot going but none more important than the whole Penn State thing.

Christ. What a fucking mess.

And I’ve got a million thoughts swirling in my head about what’s happened but I’m going to hold back. I’ve got it on good authority there’s lots more details to surface this upcoming week, details that “will sicken the public like never before.” Apparently, Jerry Sandusky is a highly disturbed individual and Penn State used all the powers at its disposal (and still may be) to protect its good name.

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Humor’s a weapon if you want to make it one. ↔ Bob Newhart

tune

What the world needs is more songs like Aloe Blacc‘s “Green Lights.”

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→ Even The Onion couldn’t properly joke about the Penn State scandal.

→ I think Bill Hader might be one of the funniest people on the planet. Seriously, click on this link and watch the skit. I love it when he says, “Oh, this lady…”

→ Ruben Amaro Jr. is doing his best to keep the Phillies viable. Welcome to Philadelphia, Jonathan Papelbon.

November 1, 2011

word

rapine [rap-in, -ahyn] n. the violent seizure and carrying off of another’s property; plunder

birthday

Stephen Crane (1871), Larry Flynt (1942), Lyle Lovett (1957), Charlie Kaufman (1958), Anthony Kiedis (1962), Toni Collette (1971), Jenny McCarthy (1972)

standpoint

I’ve been meaning to update the About page of the blog for a while now. And the other night I did. So click here if you want to know more about me. If you don’t, keep moving down for the rest of today’s post, jerk.

quotation

Sarcasm and compassion are two of the qualities that make life on earth tolerable. ↔ Nick Hornby

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I’m not a huge fan of people asking me questions like, “What’s your all-time top 5 movies/albums/books/whatevers?” Granted, I’ve got those lists in my head but they may not be the same from one day to the next so I dislike providing them. I always think of additions or subtractions and want to make amendments but the moment has passed. It’s out there and I can’t get it back.  But there are a few constants on those lists. For instance, my Top 5 Favorite Songs list will always include “Hyperspace” by Nada Surf.

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→ I’m annoyed with myself right now. Sometimes I come across a news item that makes me thankful for being served such a softball and I can’t wait to write something witty about it and it just doesn’t come. Anyway, Michael Vick now owns a parrot. Sigh. I’m better than this.

→ Last week I wrote about Herman Cain and how the dude is the king of backtracking. Yesterday, Cain spent his time refuting allegations of sexual harassment. At first he had no recollection of any such allegations. Later he said all the talk of allegations kind of jogged his memory but details were still kind of fuzzy. By evening, the fuzziness was apparently lifted and he was able to provide a detailed account of not only the allegations but how those allegations were handled by his attorneys. I’m real curious to see how this pans out in terms of his campaign.

→ It’s not always easily discernible if The Onion is reporting actual stuff or just fucking around. It must be a blast to work there.

October 26, 2011

word

bunkum [buhng-kuhm] n. 1. insincere speechmaking by a politician intended merely to please local constituents 2. insincere talk; claptrap; humbug

birthday

Bob Hoskins (1942), Pat Conroy (1945), Pat Sajak (1946), Bootsy Collins (1951), Rita Wilson (1956), Dylan McDermott (1961), Cary Elwes (1962), Natalie Merchant (1963), Seth MacFarlane (1973), Jon Heder (1977)

standpoint

It’s funny to me how people are treating the 2012 Presidential election. First of all, it’s not even 2012 yet. Also, despite what the media is pushing, the race hasn’t even begun yet. And the GOP should be happy about it because if conservative voters keep changing their collective mind about who they want to go against Obama, they’re gonna run out of viable candidates before this whole thing gets properly started.

Every week there’s a new “front runner.” Mitt Romney, Rick Perry and even Michele Bachmann have had their reign as heir apparent. And now it’s Herman Cain.

Herman Cain. Conservative. Black. CEO. Lunatic. I’m not using that last word in a negative way because, to paraphrase the immortal Billy Joel, it might just be a lunatic we’re looking for.

I mean the guy just says whatever the hell he wants, whenever he wants. He’ll make a statement one day, then come back a little later and contradict it. Or maybe he’ll expound on it. Or maybe he’ll just flat out deny he ever said it. It doesn’t matter if what he’s saying from one minute to the next is true because it appears like it is. He speaks in such a way that you just kind of want to believe whatever words happen to be falling out of his mouth are the truth.

Here’s a great article detailing how Cain is clearly the new zen master of shucking and jiving.

Right now, Cain is an amusing figure, a kind of curiosity. He’s an eloquent man participating in debates and interviews in which the subject matter is entirely hypothetical. I’m mostly sure that when it’s time to get serious, when everyone is looking for actual answers, when it’s time to play for real, Cain will be less appealing.

But, while I never want to live in a world where Herman Cain is running anything but his mouth, I have to admit that I kind of dig his whole free-wheeling, in-your-face demeanor. Now if only we could get someone worthwhile to do the same. Finger crossed, folks.

quotation

Forget governments. Focus on the individuals. ↔ Mohamed ElBaradei

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A few weeks back, I picked up 12 Desperate Straight Lines by Telekinesis because the sticker on the CD read, “Spin says, ‘If you don’t like Telekinesis, your ears don’t work.'” Strong words. Maybe a little too strong. But it’s still a good listen. Check out “I Cannot Love You”

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→ Dear Arby’s, as a nationwide purveyor of meat sandwiches, I gotta believe you’ve got a pretty sizable marketing department. Furthermore, I find it hard to fathom someone in that marketing department didn’t maybe tell you that no one in Philadelphia calls a cheese steak a “Philly.” It’s not the most important thing going on in the world right now but it’s just bugging the shit out of me.

Here’s yet another example of how The Onion can be more accurate than the actual sports media.

→ This is great. Here’s the media reporting on how the media is losing interest in Occupy Wall Street. Maybe the media should be focusing on why people are losing interest in the media.

04.30.10 – A Friday

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much obliged

Before I get into the last post, I wanted to thank all of you for reading and posting comments to the daily euneJeune. I can’t tell you how much I’ve appreciated all the feedback and support.

For their role, however large or small, they played in making this a rewarding undertaking, I’d like to give a special thanks to the following people: Donika Miller, Marc Schuster, David Frees, John Sellers, Ezgi Bilici, Joe Taylor, John Hay, Kate Jacovino, Jeannie Matamoros, Beth Treisner, Heather Petrovsky, Courtney Papada Daly, Kelly Kampf, Jonathan Chriswell, Bill McLeer, Kristie Attardi, Wynn Sanders, Mike Graveley, Richard O’Connor, Brian McFadden, Kevin Emery, Adam Schwartzberg and Annette Burgess. Your support was huge.

Sorry if you deserved a mention and didn’t get one. Doesn’t mean anything other than I’m forgetful.

Also, a special shout-out goes to Mindninja, or Jen, or whatever the hell your name is, for stalking me for a few months last year. Your unrelenting negativity taught me there’s always going to be someone who flat out disagrees with my perspective. I have no idea who you are, but I have my theories (ex-girlfriend, ex-friend, etc.). Whoever you are, I hope the medication is working.

All right, now to today’s installment.

word

abeyance [uh-bey-uhns] n. 1. temporary inactivity, cessation, or suspension: Let’s hold that problem in abeyance for a while 2. Law. a state or condition of real property in which title is not as yet vested in a known titleholder: an estate in abeyance

birthday

Jean-Baptiste de la Salle (1651), David Thompson (1770), Alice B. Toklas (1877), Percy Heath (1923), Johnny Horton (1925), Cloris Leachman (1926), Willie Nelson (1933), Gary Collins (1938), Burt Young (1940), Jill Clayburgh (1944), Isaiah Thomas (1961), Akon (1973), Johnny Galecki (1975), Kirsten Dunst (1982)

standpoint

It’s finally here. The day I’m closing shop on the euneJeune daily. 14 months ago, I began this to prove to myself I could write something, good or bad, on a daily basis. And, for the most part, I did. I’ll always look back to this blog as something I’m proud of. I’m going to miss it badly.

But life goes on and I need to spend the time I allotted for this and use it for the writing I was meant to. Don’t worry, I won’t be entirely disappearing from the internet. I’ve been invited to be a contributor on Popularity Contest, a blog recently started by my friend Marc Schuster, and I’ll be posting stories on there from time-to-time.

I love Esquire and my favorite section is always “What I’ve Learned.” For my last Standpoint, I’m going to share what I’ve learned about myself, about the internet, about the world, from what I’ve done here.

» Astrology is horseshit. The day of the year someone happens to be born is completely inconsequential. Oskar Schindler and Saddam Hussein share the same birthday. So do Leonardo da Vinci and Seth Rogen, Raphael and Zach Braff, Vincent van Gogh and MC Hammer, James Madison and Erik Estrada. Looking for similarities within those pairings is ridiculous.

» Like most writers, I guess, I have a tendency to concentrate on troublesome people. I’ve focused more on Glenn Beck, Oprah Winfrey and Sarah Palin than I have on Chuck Klosterman, Conan O’Brien and Jack Kerouac. Something I should dwell on for a stretch.

» I have a broader vocabulary than I used to. The other day, I heard someone describe himself as a polemic and I knew exactly what he meant. (He was calling himself a controversialist.)

» The amount of news stories on any given day is staggering. Between the “reputable” sources and the bloggers, it’s fairly easy to find a news story in which the facts are presented just the way you like them. It’s great because no one ever again has to be wrong. Even when they are.

» I challenge you to find any quotations website where Mark Twain, Oscar Wilde and Ralph Waldo Emerson aren’t prominently featured. Go on, I dare you.

» Probably even Zach Rogue thinks I listen to too much Rogue Wave.

» When you write a blog, your greatest friends won’t read it. If you offered my best friend Harvey $1 million to tell you just one thing I wrote about here in the past six months, he’d be forced to forfeit the cash. (I have to say Joe Taylor is an exception to this rule. Or I’d never hear the end of it.)

» If you’re doing anything online that’s in need of promotion and you fail to see the merits of Facebook an Twitter, you need to reconsider. The days where I shared or tweeted my latest post, my traffic was over three times higher than those days I didn’t. The stuff works.

» One thing anyone who writes needs to remember is that there are those out there who internalize everything they read. Because of that, you’ll receive negative and hurtful attacks. Never let the vitriol people spew stop you from expressing yourself. Fuck those people. Wake up tomorrow and keep going.

I’ve learned all that and more. I hope you learned some things, as well.

quotation

Don’t be dismayed by goodbyes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends. Richard Bach

tune

For my last post I thought this Elliott Smith song was rather appropriate. Enjoy “A Fond Farewell.”

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→ If you’re not yet reading Hyperbole and a Half, I’m not sure what you’re waiting for. One of the greatest blogs I’ve read.

→ Man, US Senators sure do fancy themselves some meddling. Hey, elected officials, I’ve got to believe there some other problem you can be trying to solve. We’d be in a pretty sweet spot right now if Facebook privacy issues was the country’s highest priority.

This is the closest thing I’ve seen resembling honest journalism in a long, long time.

04.14.10 – A Wednesday

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word

pastiche [pa-steesh, pah-] n. 1. a literary, musical, or artistic piece consisting wholly or chiefly of motifs or techniques borrowed from one or more sources 2. an incongruous combination of materials, forms, motifs, etc., taken from different sources; hodgepodge

birthday

Anne Sullivan (1866), Thomas Schelling (1921), Rod Steiger (1925), Loretta Lynn (1935), Pete Rose (1941), Richard Jeni (1957), Brad Garrett (1960), Robert Carlyle (1961), Anthony Michael Hall (1968), Adrien Brody (1973), Sarah Michelle Gellar (1977), Win Butler (1980),

standpoint

Tomorrow, the Stanley Cup Playoffs begin. And I’m certain not too many of you are overly concerned about that but I thought I’d share some facts here anyway.

→ No team has repeated as Stanley Cup Champs since the Detroit Red Wings did it back in 1997 and 1998.

→ The Chicago Blackhawks are in possession of the longest streak of not winning a Stanley Cup – 47 years. They’re the second seed in the Western Conference this year, and it’s not out of the question they could make a run for it.

→ The Philadelphia FlyersBlair Betts is the current owner of the individual streak for games without a playoff point at 24. He hasn’t registered on the score sheet since April 12th, 2007.

→ Teams trailing 3-1 in a seven games series have come back to win it only 8.97% of the time. Flyers fans would like to forget when the New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia’s current first-round opponent, did it back in 2000. I still don’t have the strength to get into the Scott Stevens hit on Eric Lindros.

→ The record holder for most overtime playoff goals in NHL history is Joe Sakic with 8. Of players actually in this year’s playoffs, the leader is the New Jersey Devils’ Jamie Langenbrunner with 4.

→ Of this year’s playoff goaltenders, the Washington CapitalsJose Theodore has the highest winning percentage at .630, 17 wins and 10 losses.

Those are stats I thought pretty interesting. Of course, the stats don’t matter much in hockey.

My prediction, I’ll be shocked as hell if the Washington Capitals don’t win the Cup. But, even though I know more about hockey than you, the knowledge never translates into being right.

quotation

If you’re in a bad situation, don’t worry it’ll change. If you’re in a good situation, don’t worry it’ll change. John A. Simone, Sr.

tune

I’m aware of the lack of love out there for in the hipster music community for North Carolina band Jump, Little Children. But I think they’re pretty damn solid, especially in lyrical terms. The part of  “The House Our Father Knew” where Jay Clifford shouts out, “Don’t you hear the deafening roar?,” is something I know I’m supposed to dismiss as cheesy, but I just can’t.

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→ What was Ben Roethlisberger thinking? After the authorities failed to bring him up on charges no one was going to come out and say what we all know he did was wrong? Usually, I think Terry Bradshaw is a windbag, but he I think he got it on the money here.

This country is facing a shorting of 150,000 doctors in 15 years? It’s just one thing after another, isn’t it?

→ I, for one, wouldn’t have blamed Donovan McNabb if he’d actually said all of this. It would’ve been completely understandable if he’d “apologized for his failure to shore up the Eagles defense and his inability to keep Brian Westbrook healthy while leading the team to five NFC Championship games.”

04.05.10 – A Monday

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word

casuistry [kazh-oo-uh-stree] n. 1. specious, deceptive, or oversubtle reasoning, esp. in questions of morality; fallacious or dishonest application of general principles; sophistry 2. the application of general ethical principles to particular cases of conscience or conduct

birthday

Thomas Hobbes (1588), Booker T. Washington (1856), Spencer Tracy (1900), Lord Buckley (1906), Bette Davis (1908), Gregory Peck (1916), Arthur Hailey (1920), Roger Corman (1926), Stanley Turrentine (1934), Colin Powell (1937), Michael Moriarty (1941), Max Gail (1943), Christopher “Kid” Reid (1964), Mike McCready (1966), Paula Cole (1968)

standpoint

My lady came from Paris yesterday so I spent last night hanging with her and that translates into no new standpoint today.

quotation

I think in a lot of ways unconditional love is a myth. My mom’s the only reason I know it’s a real thing. Conor Oberst

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Despite my indie rock tendencies, I’d be kicked out of every hipster dufus bar I had the misfortune of walking into if people knew I really don’t care for Conor Oberst, or Bright Eyes as he’s better known by. There is one song of his, however, that will always resonate with me. Here’s “I Must Belong Somewhere.”

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“It’s Butler vs. Duke for the National Title.” And I still don’t care.

→ Man, if only this was true. The saddest part of it is that it might actually do some good. Ugh.

Green Day? Soundgarden? Lady Gaga?!?! What the hell happened to you, Lollapalooza?

03.01.10 – A Monday

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word

semblance [sem-bluhns] n. 1. outward aspect or appearance 2. an assumed or unreal appearance; show 3. the slightest appearance or trace 4. a likeness, image, or copy 5. a spectral appearance; apparition

birthday

John Pell (1611), Frédéric Chopin (1810), Glenn Miller (1904), Ralph Ellison (1913), Harry Caray (1914), Pete Rozelle (1926), Harry Belafonte (1927), Robert Bork (1927), Robert Conrad (1935), Roger Daltrey (1944), Dirk Benedict (1945), Alan Thicke (1947), Burning Spear (1948), Catherine Bach (1954), Ron Howard (1954), Timothy Daly (1956), Nik Kershaw (1958), Mark-Paul Gosselaar (1974)

standpoint

Tomorrow will be the first anniversary of this blog. It’s hard to believe it’s been a year. Looking back to the first night, having a vague idea of what I wanted to accomplish and sitting here now, I’m slightly amazed with how it’s all transpired.

Some trial and error, some ups and downs, some hiatuses and I’m still borderline addicted to updating this blog almost every day. More importantly, I’m happy that so many of you come here daily to read what I’ve got to offer, especially those of you who take time our of your day to let me know what you think, both good and bad. All the feedback has been really helpful and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you. Truly.

I’m not going to make any promise of what’s to come or what’ll happen on the euneJeune daily, but as of right now, I have no intention of quitting. For the foreseeable future, I’ll be posting something most every day, except Saturdays and Sundays.

Thanks again for reading. Come back tomorrow for some more. I promise I’ll be back to my bitter self by then and will most definitely have something I need to get off my chest about the world around us. Indeed.

quotation

In the forest, there was a crooked tree and a straight tree. Every day, the straight tree would say to the crooked tree, “Look at me…I’m tall, and I’m straight, and I’m handsome. Look at you…you’re all crooked and bent over. No one wants to look at you.” And they grew up in that forest together. And then one day the loggers came, and they saw the crooked tree and the straight tree, and they said, “Just cut the straight trees and leave the rest.” So the loggers turned all the straight trees into lumber and toothpicks and paper. And the crooked tree is still there, growing stronger and stranger every day.Tom Waits

tune

One music artist I feel sometimes goes unnoticed is Peter Gabriel. Sure, I know the dude is a megastar and, right now, he’s probably sitting in a house so big most of us don’t possess the imagination to conceptualize its enormity, figuring out which charitable cause to throw his weight behind next. But he’s not on the top of anyone’s list. I talk about music constantly, and I always ask people whose music they simply couldn’t live without. I’ve gotten hundreds of different responses but no one’s ever said, “Peter Gabriel.” And I’m not sure why.  Sure, he’s got a couple strikes against him like the fact Genesis did their best work after Gabriel left, forcing Phil Collins to come out from behind his drumkit. And, yeah, his use of costumes during live shows was, to put it mildly, less successful as David Bowie and Elton John but, let’s face it, not everyone can pull that shit off. On the other hand, he’s credited with changing the way music videos (Remember those?) were made with songs like “Sledge Hammer.” And the scene from the movie Say Anything where John Cusack holds the boombox, blasting “In Your Eyes,” outside of Ione Skye‘s house is largely considered the greatest use of music in the history of cinema. 1986’s So is almost always mentioned in those Top 500 Albums of All-Time lists that music critics create when there’s not a lot going on. Obviously, Peter Gabriel’s done some stuff, some good, some bad, some puzzling, but you’ve got to give him his due because he’s done it all on his terms. And that’s pretty much the definition of cool. Here’s my choice for his best song – “Come Talk To Me.”

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As I’m sure you’re aware, one of the biggest earthquakes ever hit the South American nation of Chile over the weekend. So far, it doesn’t appear to be as devastating as the one that almost destroyed Haiti almost two months ago. From what I can tell that’s because, according to experts, the Chilean quake was “deeper” and its epicenter was located 20 miles offshore. Also, Chileans were better prepared for an earthquake both in terms of the structure of their buildings and the infrastructure of its government. As I write this, the death toll for Chile has been set at a little over700, but I suspect that number will climb in the days to come. If you know anyone who’s living in Chile and are looking for information on them, Google has setup a Chile People Finder.

→ Probably tomorrow, or maybe the next day, I’ll have some final thoughts on the 2010 Winter Olympic Games but right now I’d just like convey my appreciation to all the US Olympians who helped bring home a record 37 medals, especially the members of the Men’s Ice Hockey Team, who played some of the best hockey I’ve ever seen in my life. But more on that to come.

→ As of late, I know I’ve been in the need for some laughs and this article from The Onion did the trick. And, no, Dikembe Mutombo is not a US Senator. I had to look that up to make sure, though.