Sunday, January 31, 2010

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Two Johnnies

I Used to Know a Bit About Music

It's not easy being a Stones "apologist," believe me. In the middle of a conversation about, say, punk or post-rock, dropping The Stones can have a chilling effect. Of course the young people today barely remember U2, so I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

The Stones in their prime:



A damn good U2 video:



I'm fighting a losing battle...

Platform


Friday, January 29, 2010

PSA: Emoticon-Live

[The following scene could be playing itself out anywhere in the world. Right now. As you're reading this. Anytime, really. Yesterday, even.]

A: Fuck, I hate literal-minded people.

B: What do you mean? Like, who?

A: That asshole roommate of mine. He's a fucking English major for Christ's sake, but he takes everything I say, I mean every-fucking-thing, literally.

B: Like what?

A: Oh, fuck... A couple of weeks ago I walked into the kitchen and he was pouring himself a glass of milk. I was actually in a good mood, and when I saw him having milk I just blurted out, "Hey! Real men don't drink milk, ya know?" I mean, I was just kidding around.

B: Yeah?

A: He was all, like, "Oh." That was it. He said, "Oh."

B: Hmmm... Maybe he didn't get that you were kidding around.

A: No fucking shit. Today I was pouring myself a glass of milk, and he came into the kitchen and when he saw me he got all serious and shit and said, "I thought you said real men didn't drink milk."

B: Really?

A: No shit. He looked at me as if I were the biggest, lying-est, sack of shit on the planet.

B: Fuck off.

A: I'm fucking serious, man.

B: What did you do?

A: What did I do? I looked at him as if he were the biggest, stupidest sack of shit on the planet. I mean, what the fuck? The guy studies Shakespeare and shit and he can't tell when someone's kidding around?

B: Maybe he was kidding around.

A: What? No... You think...?

[Insert plug for "Emoticon-Live" product here.]

TV Snooze

I gave up on TV as a news source a couple of years ago. This very clever, very well-done parody pretty much nails one of my biggest complaints about TV news "reporting":



[VIA: Cynical-C]

Miyazaki Side Street


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Note to Self

You haven't been playing drums/music at all lately. Best get on the horn to the guys and get some jammin' together before your brain turns completely to mush. Yeah, Miyazaki (and probably most of Japan) kinda sucks when it comes to gigs for middle-aged guys doing classic rock shit, but there's always the rehearsal space. Playin' is playin'. Get that bass drum pedal you've been pining over for the last few months. Spend the money and you won't want to see it wasted gathering dust in the closet. Get those practice CDs done up and pass them out to the boys. How can you hope to make them see your musical vision of "post-psychedelic death folk" if you can't give them some idea of what it might sound like? Buy some new sticks. There's nothing like holding a brand new, un-nicked set of sticks... testing the weight--which one for which hand? ...testing the balance for a nice, loose grip... a few light, tentative taps on the snare and hats... Now they're nicked...

Possibility.

One, two, three, four...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Little Toy Gun

Busy... impending brain death... got nuthin'... huh...?

Please enjoy this fine musical selection from honeyhoney:

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Night


PSA: A Message from Transport Canada

I don't know what it's like for Americans on domestic flights, but flying into the U.S. from a foreign country (any foreign country) has sucked ass for several years now. The flights suck, the airports suck, and the security sucks. It's a shitty experience. It's also a completely useless waste of time. And it's only getting worse with the passing of each day.

The War on Terror ended the day it began. You lost America.



"Transport Canada: A division of the US Dept. of Homeland Security." That was a nice touch.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Licorice Schtick

There is a lot of strange stuff on the web. I mean, it's strange because it has no apparent meaning or use.

Just tonight, for example, I was wondering why the Japanese seem to hate licorice. My own data sample, while yielding compelling evidence, is statistically small. I was hoping that perhaps there was somebody doing similar work and who had a broader test sample. Failing that, I was hoping at least that someone, somewhere, had had a similar notion and had written about it somewhere on the web. I found a couple of tantalizing leads, but nothing conclusive.

Now, where was I? Oh yeah, meaningless and useless stuff on the web. Right. In the course of my licorice research I stumbled across a site called DopeStats, which claims to track "drug prices, drug statistics, and drug use" in 3,140 American counties. From the website:
Welcome to DopeStats, a public awareness project. Our data is compiled by anonymous users providing information about their use of substances ranging from common psychoactives such as alcohol and cannabis (marijuana), to chemicals like nicotine and crack/cocaine.
Now I know what you're thinking--you're thinking, "gee, Rick, this might actually be useful information." And you'd be right!

But then I saw this:

Followed by this:
The United States faces an on-going drug problem due to the lack of an easy method for the people to report this kind of data. The most familiar ways include local law enforcement, a counseling or rehab center, or an out-dated survey. Neither of these attract the recreational drug user at the necessary level, which leaves society with a very limited picture of today's illegal drug markets [...]
But the real stunner was this:

And so friends, it appears that the U.S. does not have any kind of problem with the illegal use of licorice.

You can't read this sort of stuff just anywhere, you know.

Uh Oh...


The Stupidest Thing I've Read Today

So there's this article listing the Top 10 Most Overrated Directors of All Time over at Big Hollywood, and it's written by Ben Shapiro, hero of the Culture Wars (and last seen in these pages whining about "Hollywood's Left Wing Agenda").

Let's get right to it, shall we? (Don't worry, this is only the "lowlights".)

Shapiro says of Ridley Scott (#10):
"Blade Runner is a bizarre and massively overpraised mess."
"Thelma and Louise is liberal tripe..."
"Alien is slow."
And you know, it's not like an intelligent movie-goer hasn't heard this sort of thing about these movies before.  What makes Shapiro's analysis stand out from others is it's complete and utter... lack of analysis. And even when he's right ("GI Jane is hysterically terrible.") he hilariously mistakes Viggo Mortenson for Orlando Bloom.

Lack of analysis characterizes pretty much the whole piece, actually. The movies of David Lean (#8) are all too long for Shapiro, "they're all less than masterpieces." That's all he has to say. In fact, he might just as well have written up a list of whatever and said "I don't like or understand this stuff, therefore it sucks." Conservatism in a nutshell. Big Hollywood should just have a continuous splash screen with those words. It's not like anything they say is any sort of elaboration on anything being said or done anywhere.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah. Shapiro also goes after some easier targets: Darren Aronofsky (#7), David Lynch (#5), and Quentin Tarantino (#4). Aronofsky's PI is
a jumble of nonsense that starts nowhere and goes nowhere.  It may be the worst film ever made.  Watching it made me want to rip out my own retinas, then replace them through surgery, then rip them out again.
David Lynch is
one of those annoyingly “deep” directors we’re all supposed to puzzle over. Forget it. There’s nothing worth puzzling.
And Quentin Tarantino "doesn't know how to tell a story." Again, nothing in the way of example or analysis. I happen to like all three of these directors, but you don't have to be on the highschool debating team to come up with something resembling criticism against targets as obvious as these three.

Talking about Martin Scorcese's (#2) The Departed, Shapiro writes something so utterly bizarre that it bears repeating here:
Nobody cares what happens to Leonardo DiCaprio in The Departed (in fact, in one screening I saw, people cheered when he got it in the head).
Mr. Shapiro, um, I think you may be a bit confused. Are you sure you're not talking about Matt Damon's character? You did watch the movie didn't you? DiCaprio's character was pretty clearly and unambiguously a good guy. Or did you happen to attend a special screening for Irish gangsters? What the fuck are you talking about? You're full of shit. That's my analysis, and you've supplied a good example.

By the time Shapiro tells us (and really, that's all he's doing--telling us) that Alfred Hitchcock is the #1 overrated director, it's no longer possible to be surprised.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Runner

Stuff on the Beach

The beach tends to look the same most any day that you go. Until you look down and notice that there's an apparently different bunch of stuff washing ashore every day. I didn't check the bottle for a message...




Vending Machines, No. 91


Locked in the Trunk of a Car

The Tragically Hip are legendary in Canada. I'm certain I've posted this video before, but probably poorer quality. This is The Hip at their peak, lyrically and musically (or so I think). Too Canadian to make it down south:



Too Canadian? Get outta here:



"I had the dream of having no room"... I've had that dream every night since the day I was born.

Friday, January 15, 2010

In the Death Car

We're alive...

This Has Got to Stop

A quote from America's first legal male prostitute:
Basically this is the first time in the economy of the United States that a male has actually stood up and said, "I want to do this for a living." And be protected under law to do it. It's just the same as when Rosa Parks decided to sit at the front instead of the back. She was proclaiming her rights as a disadvantaged, African-American older woman. And I'm doing the same.
Right. Just like Rosa Parks.

A million gags come to mind, but I don't have the stomach for this kind of bullshit tonight.

Pat Robertson, Asshole

I guess by now anyone who cares has seen or heard about holy-roller Pat Robertson's comments suggesting that problems in Haiti are a result of a pact the Haitian people made with the devil to get out from under the French.

Leave it to a god-bothering racist piece of shit like Robertson to attribute an important moment in history to Satan. In case anyone is unaware of it, the Haitian Revolution is considered to be the first and only successful slave revolt in the New World, and it resulted in Haiti being the first republic ruled by people of African ancestry.

Pact with the devil, indeed.

We may never hear Pat Robertson (and others like him) say the word "nigger" out loud. But we don't really have to, do we?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Somewhat Unspecified Horror


Not Deep

You'd think that after doing the same job for a few years you could sort of just switch into "auto-pilot" mode. I find, however, that the longer I do something the more I begin to notice all the things I could or should have been doing. And, of course, when you turn your attention to one thing, some other thing usually suffers for it.

Hardly an original thought, but that's about where I am these days. Between things I have to do and things I want to do... And things I both have to and want to do. Better than being bored, I guess.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

And for my next trick...


Wire Light Covers



Vending Machines, No. 90


Wild Thing

Incredible. Fucking incredible. "Wild Thing" is not a woman (no offense!). "Wild Thing" is life itself...

Hard to beat this...

Rock Your Baby

You know, it's gettin' late, and I'm feelin' all confessional and all... I can't say that I particularly dig the video, but I definitely love the tune...

Tell Me

I don't mind telling the world that this turns my crank. If it don't turn your crank, well, we can't all be perfect. Sharon Jones...



Yeah.

Take Your Mamma

An absolutely kickin' tune by Scissor Sisters. Maybe I've posted this before, I don't care.



Clever readers/viewers can connect this to the previous video...

My Hands Felt Just Like Two Balloons

Forgot how fucking good this was... is. "I turned to look but it was gone, I cannot put my finger on it now..."

Prominent User of the Internet

So I get this spam that begins:
Prominent User of the Internet How are you today? Hope all is well with
you and your family?I hope this mail meets you in a perfect condition.
I think from now on I'd like to be referred to as "Prominent User of the Internet." Seriously. It's like "The Dude" in The Big Lebowski. He demanded that as a form of address without any irony.

I am Prominent User of the Internet. Do my bidding.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Moon, New Year's Eve

I wasn't going to post this pic, but then I saw this one and thought it was an interesting coincidence.


Rockwell Retro-encabulator

Possibly the most awesome two-minute spiel I've ever heard for a product. I encourage you to watch (and listen to) the whole clip. It takes a few seconds to get into its rhythm, but it's pure poetry... The retro-encabulator:



The only way that could have been improved is if they'd managed somehow to work in the word "implosion." That's a very minor quibble, though.

[VIA: Cynical-C]