Thursday, January 31, 2008


I have blaaged before about my love of MTV reality shows. So, imagine my joy when I came home today and found a Made mini-marathon on TV. Which got me to thinking, naturally.

I want to be a made coach.

I don't care in what. It could me "Made: I want to be an insightful blogger" or "Made: I want to be a salty bitch." I don't care. I want to be a made coach. More than anything else in the world. I want to do it to develop my confidence and help other people out.

I want to be made.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Bein' sick makes me all crotchety

So, imagine my enjoyment when I found this:

The Failblog. The blog dedicated to failure in all its many forms. Brightened my day considerably.

(Via BoingBoing.)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Please enjoy a surprisingly sprightly rendition of this classic Kris Kristofferson song.
(not, however, the classic Kris Kristofferson song mentioned in the title of the post)

Existential Horror

"The church at Westboro which he leads has 71 confirmed members, 60 of whom are related to Phelps through blood or marriage or both." (from Wikipedia's article on Fred Phelps)

You know what the scariest fucking thing about that is? Eleven other human beings, unrelated and therefore without obligation to this nutjob, have joined that church.

Misplaced Priorities

I should probably be writing about the wicked sweet ska show I went to tonight, but instead I'm drinking a 40 and wishing to appraise anyone with Comcast Cable of the fact that 1.) you have MTV on demand and 2.) MTV on demand has "My Super Sweet 16."

For those of you previously unaware, "My Super Sweet 16" is a 23 minute recap of everything that's wrong with America. In this, it is the direct opposite of "Made" which features everything that's right with America.

On edit: there is nothing about my show that does not fill me with either spite or rage.

That's not strictly true. Immediately after the birthday girl told two of her friends that they couldn't come to her party because they didn't want to audition to be in her "entrance," she bit it breakdancing. That filled me with schadenfreude.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Generously Angry

I've been reading a bunch of George Orwell recently, and seeing this, one of my favorite songs, reminded me of his essay about Charles Dickens. It's a very long essay, but it really comes down to the fact that Dickens' mantra was basically "It would be a better world if people were less beastly to eachother." Orwell points out that this is not as simplistic as it appears.

Which loops me back around to Billy Bragg. "Between the Wars" is one of my favorite songs because, at heart, it's about human decency. "For theirs is a land with a wall around it and mine is a faith in my fellow man," was written 20-odd years ago, but given what we're doing on our southern border, still works. The lines about raising a family in times of austerity are also still moving. "Not for the iron fist but for the helping hand" is as good of a rallying cry as I've heard in a while, and at least, I think, as good of a basis for a political philosophy as Dickens' mantra.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Great things to do on a friday

Parkland College, the C-U area's community college, produces a high school quiz show, in which teams compete for bragging rights, called the Parkland Challenge.

It's truly great, you have two teams of kids answering some questions, and if you watch enough you get to see the same teams and get a sense of their personalities, figure out who to root for, and who to make fun of. It's also fun to play along.

Thursday, January 24, 2008


Dear America,
What the fuck? Remember the fun we used to have, with baseball and musicals, and satirical novels? You didn't used to have to sink to this. You used to be able to have fun without inflicting lacerations on my soul. Why can't we be like we used to?

love and squalor,


Wednesday, January 16, 2008

As things would have it

I've been reading some J.D. Salinger recently, and was thinking about it (and more specifically how I need to get my copy of Nine Stories back) when, amazingly, what comes on the tube but an advertisement for an correspondence art school. It doesn't mean much, but I thought it was neat.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Soulja boy is an elaborate practical joke.

I am convinced, for the sake of my own sanity and faith in humanity if nothing else, that Soulja Boy Tell 'Em is an elaborate, long-running, practical joke. I imagine the conversation went something like this:
Soulja Boy: "Hey, I bet you a dollar I can make 'superman that ho' an acceptable thing to say."
Arab: "Bullshit. I mean, come on, that's completely ridiculous. That dollar is mine!"
And then they went to the recording studio. Soulja Boy won that dollar.

Apparently Arab didn't learn his lesson, because there's a new one out. The conversation probably happened this way:
Soulja Boy: "Hey, I bet you two dollars I can make people think that "yahhh, trick, yahhh' is totally ok to use in everyday conversation."
Arab: "There's no way people are that stupid. I'll take that bet."
Arab just doesn't learn. Or, maybe, he's the mastermind of the joke, and is quietly encouraging his colleague to greater and greater heights, until the joke is finally discovered. That's my theory , anyway.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Do not forsake me

One of my all-time, favorite movies is High Noon. Unless you've seen it, there's no real way to describe how it works. It's in black and white, told mostly in real time, and is a great western. But somehow, that doesn't do it justice. It's one of the greatest movies - in the sense of best put together, most moving, well-acted - that America has produced. It should be required viewing in high school, I think, just to say "hey, look, we did this, and really, what else do you need to know about America that you can't get from this film?"

Friday, January 11, 2008

The past is a foreign country

One of the big advances from the past few centuries, I shouldn't even have to say, is photography. I don't really notice it anymore, which means that it's worked, like print. It's become such a part of our lives, that we notice when it's gone, for the most part. It sounds stupidly obvious to say it, but it lets us capture moments in time, either for now (e.g. Facebook pictures) or for posterity (e.g. Mathew Brady) So, when a collection like Tom Sutpen's blog crops up, it's always cool. Fashion pictures from long ago, mid-century advertising, old pin-ups, series like "Trick Dick" and "Before and After," and "Weekly Weegee" all make it a great way to lose a few hours.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Early each year, I watch boingboing for news of the Best of Bootie compilation. Bootie is a mash-up club night, and generally produces some entertaining stuff. My theme song, for instance, is "Badd to Me," from the 2005 comp, which combines the Cure with the Ying-Yang Twins. This year's has some stand-out tracks, which I will enumerate.
  1. Detox (Amy Winehouse vs. Britney Spears) - King of Pants. Two things I love about Mash-ups. The mashers have awesome nomes de mash, and some of the best mash-ups are not just fun to dance to, or neat sounding, but make some broader* point. "Detox" combines two songs I like already and pokes fun at the whole celebrity rehab thing. It's a little sadder and creepier when you realize that "Toxic" was released before Britney's life went to crazy shit.
  2. Tequila Lip Gloss (Lil Mama vs. the Champs) - DJ Paul V. Sometimes, all a mash-up does is make a song better. Adding the Tequila song to that damn Lip Gloss song does this.
  3. Illiterate city (Jackson 5 vs. Guns 'n' Roses) - Divide & Kreate. This one's fun. It takes the "A-B-C, easy as 1-2-3" song and puts the guitars from "Paradise City" behind it. It doesn't entirely live up to it's promise (I'd love to hear L'il Michael Jackson rocking the fuck out), but it's a bunch of fun. A plus D's "Don't Stop Believin' in Planet Rock (Journey vs. Afrika Bambaataa)" does something similar.
  4. Fade to Pretty Vacant (Visage vs. Sex Pistols vs. the Charlatans, vs. Fun Lovin' Criminals vs. Nouvelle Vague) - Copycat. Pretty much unrecognizable, which is part of the fun of mash-ups. I can just about pick out the riff from "Pretty Vacant" in here, but that's about all.
There's more, certainly. There's another Britney song, an an Unk/Avril mash-up, and a fantastic John Williams/Chemical Bros collaboration. I'd highly recommend checking this out. And the two previous ones.

*meta, I think is the hip term for this.

Friday, January 4, 2008

The Tragic Life of a SF fan.

So, the promised Made marathon was a vile lie by MTV. I turned on the TV to be greeted by some Orange County reality-show bullshit. So, I turned to the internet, read a blog post on io9 about Journeyman, thought "oh, yeah, the two episodes of that show I saw were sweet" and then discovered that the whole season (sadly, looks to be the only one) is online*.

Thus went my evening.

*the link takes you to said episodes.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Official Pronouncement on Verliebtheit

If you are a straight boy and you do not have a crush on Regina Spektor, I'm revoking your Y chromosome. She has an amazing voice, plays a mean piano, and is heartbeakingly adorable.

That's all.

I picked up a new obsession.

I watched 7 hours of Made the other day. Made, the MTV show where high school kids who are unsatisfied with how they are apply scads of willpower to becoming something completely different. It's completely addictive. I'm not sure what it is, but I got completely sucked in, and am now scouring the MTV schedule for the next time to see it.*

I mention this by way of the results of this week's youtube browsing.† I was bumming around in the aether, watching all those videos of 2007 that people sent me, when I came upon the (classic?) hipster olympics. In the ever-useful "related videos" section, I found a promo for "Made: I want to be a hipster"

All 4 parts of the episode are on Youtube, and even though taking the Made concept out of high school makes it a bit weird, I still minorly lol'd.‡

*If you seek me from 2-8pm today, I will be on my couch, transfixed. They're showing all the episodes of SuperMade.
†I refuse to verb the word "Youtube."
‡Fun Fact: "minorly" is apparently not a word, but "min orly" is.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Resolution, achieved!

Those of you who know me know my tendency to overly enjoy, then really really fail to enjoy, New Year's Eve. Well, this time, I won.