05.10.11 – a tuesday

word

splenetic [spli-net-ik] adj. 1. of the spleen; splenic 2. irritable; peevish; spiteful 3. Obsolete. affected with, characterized by, or tending to produce melancholy  n. 4. a splenetic person

birthday

John Wilkes Booth (1838), Fred Astaire (1899), David O. Selznick (1902), Donovan (1946), Chris Berman (1955), Mark David Chapman (1956)Sid Vicious (1957), Bono (1962), Young MC (1967), Kenan Thompson (1978)

standpoint

I’ve always been a huge proponent of the way the world has changed since the internet came along. Some people agree with me and deal with me as I go on and on about it. Others don’t and continually ask me to shut the hell up and/or change the damn subject all ready.

I think the internet brings the world together. At least, I’m pretty sure it does. But one thing I’m completely sure about is that the internet is informative. There’s lots of stuff to peruse out there on the information superhighway. (Wow. My auto-correct didn’t give the word “superhighway” one of those squiggly lines it usually does when it can’t figure out what the hell I’m talking about. What more evidence could you possibly need? The internet is for real, folks.)

All right, so by now you know I’m digging on the internet and all of its advantages. Well, not all of them. The other day, I heard a story involving Yelp.com that’s making me, someone who’s spent most of my adult life in the restaurant business, reconsider my stance.

Here’s the gist of it: A restaurant receives a superb 3-Bell review from the Philadelphia Inquirer‘s Craig LaBan. After reading that, some dude whose Yelp nickname is “Tough Critic” decides to try the place out for himself with his mom and one other person in tow.

“Tough Critic” has obviously been to a few restaurants and maybe even worked in some. He details most every part of his experience, the food, the decor, the clean bathrooms. He even goes so far as to drop the names of the two owners because that’s what you do when you want people to think you’re someone of note.

By his own Yelp review, the guy has a relatively solid experience, giving the place three stars, although he does make sure to mention if he were LaBan (which is probably something this guy routinely fantasizes about), he would have only given 2-Bells to LaBan’s 3-Bells.

Because “Tough Critic” is perturbed with the service he receives from his waiter. He describes his server with statements such like, “not properly trained,” “he just didn’t care,” “huge annoyance,” and, my personal favorite, “knucklehead.” (Also, I actually laughed “Tough Critic” thought it prudent to mention how his mommy started giving the server “the evil eye.”)

After I heard about this review from a fellow service industry employee, and then again after actually reading it, I became increasingly annoyed. Because when assholes like “Tough Critic” submit their clever and narcissistic reviews online, they’re mainly focused on letting everyone know how unhappy they are about how things didn’t go as perfect as they envisioned after reading a food critic’s review. God forbid.  What doesn’t concern these dipshits is that they might actually be screwing around with someone’s life. Restaurant owners, some of them anyway, read online reviews and some of them even act on what is written there.

Even the best of us have bad days at work. To state otherwise is contrary to reason. For those of you who like to give your opinion in one online forum or another, I’m not begrudging you your right to do so. All I’m asking is that you think about the people who might be unfairly effected by the judgment you delve out after a  measly two-hour experience.

(NOTE: I left out some specifics because I am not looking to disparage any establishment or individual.)

quotation

To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that’s all. ↔ Oscar Wilde

tune

My friend Tyler told me heard a song on the radio that I might like. And he was right on. Here’s “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster The People.

gallimaufry

What’s going to be the bigger danger? Terrorist responses to the death of Osama bin Laden? Or the nervous paranoia of the American people? Only time will tell…

→ Aw, come on! I thought these two kids were gonna go the distance.

→ That’s it for today, folks, thanks for reading!

Advertisements

05.01.09 – Friday

Word: larceny [lahr-suh-nee] n. the wrongful taking and carrying away of personal goods of another from his or her possession with intent to convert them to the taker’s own use

Birthday: Calamity Jane (1852), Kate Smith (1907), Glenn Ford (1916), Jack Paar (1918), Joseph Heller (1923), Scott Carpenter (1925), Shirley Horn (1934), Judy Collins (1939), John Woo (1946), Tim McGraw (1967), Wes Anderson (1969)

Occurence: 1751 – The first cricket match is played in America. (It hasn’t ended yet. The average cricket match lasts about 300 years. Or maybe it just feels that way.)

Standpoint: Last weekend, I moved. In my old house, I had kind of a central command set up in my bedroom. Cable TV. Stereo. Internet. Obviously, I spent a lot of time in there. Now, however, I come home and there is no cable TV and there is no internet. So it’s just me, my books and my stereo. I’ve realized that my iPod was being neglected. I wasn’t listening to enough music. Now, with no other option, that’s all I’m doing. And as I’ve been revisiting my music library, I’ve come across some songs that may put my title of “music snob” to rest for good. Here are 7 Songs I’m Unhappy Being In My iPod. Enjoy.

  • Ace Of Base“The Sign” – Most likely, when I downloaded this song on 02.11.08, I had some good intentions for doing so. At this time, I can’t recall what in the world they might’ve been. I remember barely liking this song in college. And, even then, I was probably pretending to like it because of some girl.
  • Stroke 9“Little Black Backpack” – I wish I could say this was a straggler from some mix CD that was made for me back in the day. But it wasn’t. Apparently, I downloaded this song at 2:51 one morning back in 2007. I’ll blame it on Jack Daniels.
  • Right Said Fred“I’m Too Sexy” – OK. This one’s not my fault. My mother asked me to DJ a fashion show for her a few years back. I figured this would be a good song to end the show on a high note. I was right. The women loved it.
  • Young MC“Bust A Move” – This song is borderline listenable. But at the end, it all falls apart. His “best friend Harry has a brother Larry/In five days from now he’s gonna marry/He’s hopin’ you can make it there if you can/’Cause in the ceremony you’ll be the best man.” Huh? Who asks his brother’s best friend to be his best man? And a mere five days before the ceremony? It just doesn’t make any sense.
  • James Blunt“You’re Beautiful” – Remember when this guy was supposed to be the next big thing and thenVH1 and every easy-listening radio station in the country ran with this song and played it about 213 times a day? 2006 was the year I first got my iPod and I was obsessed with adding as much music as I could onto it. That’s how this sappy song got on there.
  • Charles & Eddie“Would I Lie To You?” – I have good days. I have bad days. My guess is 03.21.07 wasn’t one of my greatest days. Why else would I have downloaded this song?
  • Club Nouveau“Lean On Me” – Not only do I have this song on my iPod, but I’ve got the extended version weighing in at over 7 minutes. This had to be another alcohol-induced download as it was 4:14am when I added this little gem.

All right. So now you know. Got any embarrassing tunes on your iPod? Why not take this time to purge yourself and share them?

Weekend: Each Friday, I’ll provide you with 3 Things To Do In Philly When You’re Dead – my list of events to attend in Philadelphia this weekend as if it’s your last.

Quotation: Always strive to excel, but only on weekends.Richard Rorty

Tune: There are two versions of “Ultimatum” by The Long Winters. One is a faster studio version that appears on Putting the Days To Bed. The other (better) version is slower.

Gallimaufry: Philadelphia Stories is a non-profit literary magazine that supports the written word and, really, all the arts here in The City of Brotherly Love. It’s online auction is running now through 05.09.09. The items include nice getaways, gifts certificates to some of the city’s best spots and excellent works of art. Click HERE to support your local art scene. Unless you don’t live in Philly. And then, still, I think you should do it anyway…Mayor Nutter has announced his plan to make Philadelphia the “greenest city in the United States of America.” Check out his Greenworks PhiladelphiaWorld Health Organization (WHO) officials have declared they will stop using the term “swine flu” in order to stop people from killing pigs. (Some geniuses in Egypt apparently slaughtered 3,000 pigs in order to protect themselves from the epidemic.) Officials say they will refer to the disease by its given name – Influenza A H1N1. Sorry. Don’t see that one catching on.

Incoming: Next week will have some more of your favorite columns along with some new stuff I’ve been working on. Thanks for reading this week. Come back Monday for some more.