3/30/2005

so today is the official first day of short-sleeve shirt weather, which is pretty cool. It's official according to me, and I think it should be a national holiday or something. Maybe I'll start doing a cookout the weekend of the first day of short-sleeve shirt weather.

In other news, here are some miscellaneous things I've been reading lately:

Howard Kurtz of the Post has a big thing about Republicans turning on Tom Delay. I didn't know they removed the ethics committee chairman after he found Delay guilty of three violations.

And Yahoo has an interesting piece (from Business Week, a magazine I guess) about the attempted assassination of a Russian government energy official. Crazy stuff. And pretty messed up that assassination is still pretty common over there (like the poisoning of the Ukraine opposition leader). I guess that happens lots of places, but it's an interesting article anyway.

You can listen to Hot Hot Heat's new album at MTV.com (found on stereogum)

Also from Stereogum, a NY Post article about those "Best Week Ever"/"I Love the 80s"/"Awesomely Bad Videos" shows - apparently they're faked, they'll give the people lines to read and prod them to say certain things. That sucks. I had a sneaking suspicion though, especially since I'll be watching with my two roommates and the people on the show will be going on and on about somebody and we all say "who are they talking about? I've never heard of them." But I'm getting sick of all these reality shows that are scripted and stuff. I mean, put weirdos together and let shit happen, I think otherwise there should be a disclaimer or something. I mean, I heard that they kept Omarosa on "the Apprentice" for much longer than Donald Trump wanted to because she could be the "villain." And there were tons of rumors about "Survivor" being manipulated by network types. It sucks. I'm going to boycott those shows, except for the Real World, of course.
so apparently hipsters are all in a tizzy about the new Kelly Clarkson song (a girl from American Idol) called "Since U Been Gone." I dunno, I don't see what all the hullabaloo is about. She sounds like Avril Lavigne with a hipster producer. I hate how they both say you like "yeeew". And anyway, I think a good rule of thumb is that if a song includes the word "U" in the title, it probably is lame. Prince included. The video of the song is on her website if you haven't heard it (and I hadn't til I saw this, so whatever). There's a cover of the song by Ted Leo on the first link. It's better, but still kind of blah. And there's part of a Yeah Yeah Yeahs song in his cover too, which is neat.

3/29/2005

so I thought this image was funny and strange:
Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Erin sent it to me, it's from a news article on MSN about limited edition M&Ms. They're going to bring the tan ones back, which is cool. I liked the tan ones. It's also funny how I buy into advertising. Doh.

3/28/2005

so I just read an LA Times article that says years ago, Tom Delay and his family went along with his comatose father's wishes and took him off life support. It's a pretty interesting piece, and is also interesting since Delay is one of the main people pushing for keeping Terri Schiavo on life support, even though she supposedly didn't want to be. Of course, people can change their minds and each case is different, but there are a lot of similarities between these two, which the piece spells out. And being that it's Tom Delay we're talking about, Congressman Ethics Violation, I'm not willing to give him the benefit of the doubt: to me, it's an obvious ploy to try to court the "right to life" movement in spite of Schiavo's wishes, her husband's wishes, and the court system's rulings. However, I also read a poll that says 56% of Republicans disagree with the Republican intervention in this case. Whoopsie. So not only are are Republicans undermining our system checks and balances (nice DCist article on this), they're not actually courting the voters they thought they were.

But to liven up this serious post, here's some pictures of famous people playing ping pong, from Larry's Table Tennis website.

Fidel Castro


Prince Charles


The Clintons
Image hosted by Photobucket.com

And Mister Ed.
so I found a lot of cool and interesting sites recently.

-A lady found a finger in her chili at Wendy's. Pretty gross. You'd think that somebody would have noticed at some point though:

"Hey Boss, my finger got cut off and I can't find it. I think it fell in the chili."
"Are you sure you had it when you got to work?"

-My friend Mollie showed me a tshirt blog I had forgotten about that had this funny take-off of those Urban Outfitters state shirts:
Very clever idea, it's from a site called Cat and Girl, which also has a sometimes funny comic. I say sometimes because sometimes it's literature jokes that I don't get.

-I thought this was an interesting article, about an ad campaign for independent stores and things, called "Keep ____ Weird," as in "Keep Austin Weird" and "Keep Louisville Weird." The idea is that chain stores and big box retailers are sapping local culture by making smaller, interesting independent stores go out of business. I support this and I wonder if there'll be a "Keep DC Weird" campaign. Except billboards are illegal in DC.

-And apparently David Spade was wearing a penis-shaped fake nose in a sketch on SNL the other day. The blog I found it at, Boing Boing, says the sketch was making fun of Owen Wilson and his weird nose.

3/26/2005

Two GW players to enter NBA draft


pops
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So according to the GW Hatchet, the student newspaper at GW, two rising seniors on GW's basketball team are entering the NBA Draft, Pops Mensah-Bonsu (pictured) and Mike Hall. However, both players said they won't get an agent, which means they are free to come back to the team if they don't get much interest.

This sucks, because if they do go, that will really hurt our team, since they are two of the best players (obviously). I don't think it's a good idea for either guy though, because although Pops gets a lot of press for his monster dunks and has gotten much better in the paint, he also is kind of slim, average on defense, and lacks a mid-range jump shot, which I really think would make him unstoppable. If he got that, he could do well in the NBA. Mike Hall has a more complete game, I think, in that he's a great rebounder, good on defense, and is a good outside shooter too. I think he has more of a case to get taken in the draft, but he could be better offensively inside. Of course I don't want to see either guy go, since if they came back, we'd be a really good team. That being said, it's pretty cool that we could have two potential NBA draft picks.

3/25/2005

so this is some of the craziest shit I've ever seen: it's a video of some hairy dudes playing "Total Eclipse of the Heart" with a guitar and some various kitchen implements. Hilarious and bizarre. (A guy posted it at www.gwhoops.com). It looks like it's from some TV show, but unfortunately I have no idea who or what it is, since I can't read Icelandic.

UPDATE:
After wondering around the internet a bit, I found some more info on the band. Apparently they're called Hurra Torpedo and have some records out. They also appear to be Scandanavian, as their record label is Norwegian and that site above is Icelandic (although technically Iceland isn't in Scandanavia).

Their record label (I guess) has a bit of info on them.

Here's what appears to be a discography.

And a metric ton of photos of the band in concert. Man, I'd like to see that show. Most of the photos appear to be from the 90s. And they aren't on Amazon and I don't have any Scandanavian pals to translate this site for me.

And elsewhere on the internet, they appear to be playing a show in July of this year in Kristianstad, Norway. They also apparently once had a couple on stage having sex during their show. This link has photos (!) so it's obviously not work safe. I'll have to read that article at home.

I found a Norwegian-English translator online, but it spits out a bunch of nonsense. Although apparently Hurra means "whoopee!"

3/24/2005

so if I never saw another picture of Terry Schiavo, it'd be too soon. I'm so sick of that story, and they always show the same picture. I mean, I guess it's good this is on the news, or else we'd have to see more housefires and car wrecks.

Honestly though, I don't understand why local news shows these things. If something happens every day, even if it sucks, it's not news. Cars crash every day. Houses catch fire every day. That sucks, but what does that tell me about the world? Sure, they have to fill their shows, but there is tons of other news from around the world they could do, or even around the city. What happened at City Council today? What are local residents up in arms about? What happened on Capitol Hill? What about new restaurants or bars or concerts or theatre stuff? Or more local sports even. Or you know, something crazy, like a debate of something the mayor did. If you're just going to have car crashes and fires, you might as well have puppets or this guy do the news.

GW at the NCAA tournament in Nashville


warmups
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I went down to Nashville last weekend to see GW play Georgia Tech in the NCAA tourney. This was GW's first time in the NCAAs since 1999, when we got beat by Indiana. Ga. Tech was a tough draw, especially since I think they were in the championship game last year. GW was a 12 seed and Tech was a 12, thus hopefully setting us up for the 12-5 upset that always happens at least almost once every year. (Pictured is GW doing warmups before the game.)

I went with my friend Mike from GW and we flew down on Friday afternoon for the game which was that night. We got to our hotel, sort of near the airport in an industrial area, and took a bus downtown to go to see what was going on and to catch the GW alumni reception. Weirdly enough, Nashville is really easy to get around by bus, we took it everywhere we needed to go all weekend. The bus was pretty funny, lots of random odd city folk on there, and they were much friendlier than DC buses, since nobody ever talks on the DC buses. We got to the stadium and the place was mobbed, it looked like Mardi Gras without the boobs, the were streets packed with not totally sober folks all wearing different colored shirts and jerseys. We saw a lot of Louisville fans with the occasional Ohio or other fans. Then a minute or so later we saw some GW folks, who turned out to be big posters at gwhoops.com which was pretty cool, since we're both posters there too. We went to get a beer with them at a nearby bar and talked a bit before we all headed up to the alumni reception, which was pretty sweet. As we walked up to the room it was in, we saw the mascot (pictured below with me and my free shirt) and the band and a huge pile of buff (i.e. tan) shirts and hats. We were pretty happy to learn they were free, so we got those and hit the buffet.


Met some more gwhoops.com folks and also saw some folks I knew from school, then we decided to go to see the game before ours, Louisville and Louisiana-Lafayette. I don't know why they don't just call it the University of Louisiana, since I'm pretty sure it's the biggest one there, definitely bigger than UL-Monroe, and I've never heard of any others. I mean, everyone calls Tennessee just Tennessee and the other ones Tennessee-Chattanooga or UT-Martin and so on. But anyway, we heard our seats would be good, but I was worried since they were row CC, they'd be way up there. However, that turned out to be the third row, which was awesome. Here's the view during the Louisville game.

Obviously they're really good seats, and that's Michael Wilbon's bald head there. (You can see more pics I took during the trip at my Flickr.) Anyway, the Louisville-Louisiana game was pretty good, and Louisiana had one of the hottest cheerleaders I have ever seen in my life. She was amazing. I wish I had taken a picture, but felt kind of lame doing it so I didn't. And it was cool to see Rick Pitino, Louisville's coach, right across the court, it sort of felt like I was seeing a movie star. Which was odd, but cool. We enjoyed the game and talked to some forties-ish ladies sitting behind us who were Louisville fans. They thought we were Georgia Tech fans at first, which made sense, because both Tech and GW are exactly the same colors. We got the usual "so where is George Warshington anyway?" "what's your mascot?" and so on, but they were nice ladies. The stadium itself was impressive, it was where the NHL team, the Nashville Predators, play. It seemed to have a good atmosphere too, it was nice and loud, unlike the MCI Center, which is like a giant, silent cave. The place was packed, mostly with Louisville fans, so it was pretty loud.

So Louisville won a close one, and soon it was time for our game. It started really well for GW, we started out with two straight monster dunks by Pops Mensah-Bonsu, getting fouled on one, and then a three-pointer by TJ Thompson. The Tech fans were stunned, they must have been thinking "who the hell is this team?" The cool thing was that there were probably as many GW fans as Tech, as we were louder for practically the whole game. It was pretty close throughout, the score going from about us by 1 to Tech by 3 for probably the first 15 minutes. However, the whole time we were shooting terribly from the free-throw line, missing the front end of one-and-ones and both shots a couple times. We finished the game 4-19, which is terrible, we usually shoot 70%. So we kept missing foul shots and Tech started to make ridiculous running shots and they pulled away with a few minutes to go. They won 80-68, which sucked because it looked worse than it was. We played a good game and kept most of their players in check, especially the big goofy-looking 7 foot Australian Luke Schensher, who we all worried would dominate our smaller front line. So that was too bad. After the game we were pretty down and went to a bar called the Flying Saucer, a small chain (with a bizarre website) that two of my friends recommended. It was a cool place, kind of like the Brickskeller in DC, with a lot of different beers. There was a $2 cover, which was weird, but I had an excellent local beer called Onward Stout from the Nashville-based Yazoo brewery. I highly recommend it if you can find it. Plus it was like $3.50. Most of the beers down there were cheap, Guinness and Sierra Nevada were always less than $4 wherever we went, and they were always fresh, which is something I haven't been able to find in DC.

We checked out the downtown bars a bit, which was pretty quiet, then went back to our hotel. The next day we decided to see the sights, like the Parthenon (below).



As you can see, the Parthenon is a full-size replica of the one in Greece, built for Nashville's centennial in 1879 or something, and rebuilt out of stone this century. Kind of hard to tell from this picture but it's ginormous and has a big statue of Athena inside. We took the bus to get there and walked past an anti-war rally, which was cool to see. We then went to a place to eat my friends had recommended, called Rotier's. (Pronounced "Rochers" or something by the lady who gave us directions.) It's something called a "meat-and-three," which must be a Nashville thing, traditional southern food, with a meat dish and three veggies like okra, greens, etc. When we got there I realized I had been there before a couple years ago when my friends and I went up to Nashville either to see Al Gore name Joe Lieberman his VP, or for a Barenaked Ladies concert, I forget which time. Anyway, they had great burgers and shakes, and more cheap, fresh beer. It's right near the Vanderbilt campus so we decided to check that out too, and Mike, who is from New York, saw a Tennessee license plate with a Yankees sign on it, so he was pumped. We saw Vandy's football stadium, which is nice (I actually place lacrosse in it during high school, which was cool), and the frat row, which is awesome. Way better than GW. But then a row of boxes would be nicer than GW's frat row. I also picked up some local beer (Blackstone, also good) and some Goo Goo Clusters, an old-timey candy from Nashville made of marhsmallow, caramel, nuts and chocolate. Good stuff. Mike was shocked at the unhealthiness, which was funny, he was shocked a lot at the food. I wish I could have found a deep-fried twinkie or something ridiculous like that for him.

But our flight back was at 5, so we pretty much had to head back, and as usual, took the bus to the airport. It was a fun trip, despite the loss, so that's ok. Then when we got back, my pal Chris came out to pick us up at Dulles and he ended up driving around the place like 5 times because we were on the wrong level. Whoops. Here's a few more photos from the trip.


Pitino and Wilbon talking after our game


The court after our game


The marquee at the stadium


Mike with a GW shirt with the Titans' stadium in the background.

See bigger and deffer versions and more photos at Flickr.

3/23/2005

so apparently lots of Brazilian soccer players' moms are getting kidnapped, which is too bad. They usually get released though, so that's good. However, this reminded me how much I hate that Brazilian athletes only use one name. It's annoying, you're not that spectacular. I first heard it in men's soccer, like Ronaldo and Elson and Ronaldinho, which to me is the stupidest - someone already had Ronaldo, so now you're "little Ronaldo." Why not just be Ronaldo Smith, or whatever your real name is. Imagine if we did that here.

"That young man is quite a slugger, what's his name?"
"Little Mark McGwire."
"No, really, what's his name?"
"That is his name. Read the jersey."

Honestly, it's not that hard to remember people's last names, think about every American sports star. But then I started to hear the one name Brazilians thing during the Women's World Cup, "Ana passes to Veronica," whatever. Like there is only one Ana playing soccer, come on. Of course, then Mia Hamm stole the ball and scored, because she has a full name. Eat it, Brazil. And they even do it now in beach volleyball. Beach volleyball?!?

But since there can only be so many first names, they are starting to get stupid. I saw a list of players and one was called "Dunga." Great, Dung-a. But then my favorite has to be Kaka. I suppose that doesn't translate in Brazil, but good luck becoming famous in the US. I mean, Ronaldo and Juninho and people are on Nike commercials, but I don't think Kaka is going to get a lot of advertising deals. "Hey kids, Kaka wants you to eat Gogurt!" "Kaka wears Reebok." "Kaka smells great when he uses Ralph Lauren cologne." Actually, that last one is actually kind of clever.
so I really like that Burger King commercial with Hootie (Darius Rucker) doing the "Tendercrisp Bacon Cheddar Ranch" song. It's kind of cool, with bizarre visuals and a good song too, based on "Big Rock Candy Mountain," which was a hobo song in O Brother Where Are Thou. I found a link to the video of the full version of the commercial, and there's lots of discussion here. The girls with the ranch dressing weird me out and it's kind of funny that Brooke Burke is barely in it (as the girl on the swing.) Of course, in the inferior short version, she says "come and get it."

3/22/2005

so spring came a day early this year. not because it was unseasonably warm, but because the night and day were of equal lenght on the 20th and not the 21st, as usually happens. At least that's what says the Paris Observatory, via Agence France Presse:

PARIS (AFP) - Spring officially started a day ahead of schedule in the northern hemisphere, with the equinox occurring on Sunday rather than Monday, the Paris observatory said.

March 21 is generally held to be the date of the spring equinox -- or correspondingly the autumn equinox in the southern hemisphere -- but this year day and night were of equal length on Sunday, March 20.

The observatory said that since the adoption of the Gregorian calendar in 1582, the spring equinox can fall on either March 19, 20, or 21.

The last time it fell on March 19 was in 1796, and it is due to do so again in 2044.

The spring equinox is the day when the sun rises precisely in the east, travels for 12 hours through the sky and then sets directly in the west.

It is celebrated as the ancient pagan festival of the New Year or Newroz in Afghanistan, Turkey and Iran.


Here's the link, with a picture of the US Capitol and the cherry blossoms.
so I just found the a free stream of new Beck album, Guero, via Stereogum (however, the one on Stereogum is verrrry slow). Here it is, from another guy's blog. It's pretty good. Kind of sounds like Odelay and Mellow Gold (the one with "Loser") mixed together, but updated.
so apparently today is World Water Day. I am drinking water right now, but I was not aware of this until I went to Google and saw the weird graphic over the word "Google." They do that for holidays like Halloween and St. Patrick's day and stuff, so I was trying to figure out what day it is. My guess was some kind of religious thing, since I guess there was something last weekend. But if you click the Google word it brings you to a bunch of links. However, the one for the day, www.worldwaterday.org is broken, which is not very helpful. There is an ABC news story linked too, which basically says that it's to make people more aware that clean water is good and important and stuff. So that's good I guess. Don't drink from Rock Creek, people.
so I thought this was really cool, it's a website about people putting Space Invaders images on buildings all over the world. They sell these tile pieces you can stick on walls and make them into the Space Invaders attackers (I never figured out if they were ships or aliens or what). The website is really cool, it's all old-school pixely graphics. I like the "loading" image when you go to the shop.

3/21/2005

so i saw this made-for-tv movie, Spring Break Shark Attack, yesterday on CBS, it was pretty awful. Unfortunately, it didn't live up to the terribleness of the first few minutes, but it was amusing nonetheless. This good girl comes to some tropical spring break location, which is still in the US apparently, and meets a local dude, sharks attack, bad dudes get eaten, etc. Amusing stuff.

In other amusing stuff news, I found my friend Don's blog, it's funny stuff. You need to read from the bottom to understand the more recent stuff though. The weird thing is, it doesn't really sound much like Don, but it's amusing anyway.

3/18/2005

St. Patrick's Day


police van
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So I had a pretty kooky St. Paddy's day. Work was normal, but for my lunch break I went to GW to buy an NCAA tournament shirt. On the way out of the metro, there were some people holding signs saying stuff about histerectomies and how they were bad, like "you lose sensation" and weird stuff like that. It was odd. Then a bunch of drunk dudes in green were stumbling around, I guess from a bar crawl. The weird thing is that it's spring break, so GW isn't in session. I guess these were worker types who took the day off to get drunk. Then when I got to the bookstore, which is only open this week from 9 to 5, most of the shirts sucked, they were enormously long, like nightshirts, and went down to my knees. I did find a smaller one so I got that. The ride back there were more loud drunks on the train, which is usually normal, but not at noon on a weekday. So after work I went to see a comedy show at DCAC in Adams Morgan, part of the DC Comedy Fest. On the way there I decided to stop in a couple CD stores on 18th St. and look for the new CDs by Daft Punk and John Davis (former lead singer of Superdrag). Didn't find them, but on the way back, I saw a guy dressed like Uncle Sam holding a sign that said "Income Tax" on it. At first I thought he was some kind of weird anti-tax protestor, or maybe pro-tax, because he was standing at a place where there used to be a Kerry table. But then I realized he was advertising for a tax-prep place. The odd thing was, rather than say "hey, need your taxes done," he said "hey man, do you like art?" I said "yeah" and he gave me a flyer which was for a lady's art show, and on the back it was an ad for tax prep. Pretty odd. (Here's a picture of the guy, tried to be sneaky about it.)
So anyway, back to comedy. I missed the first group I wanted to see, Sketch 22, but I did catch the others, Season Six, an improv group made up of a few folks I knew from improv class and a guy I knew from GW, TJ Miller, who was doing standup. I also ended up seeing another standup who I'd seen once before. He was fairly amusing, as were the improv group, but TJ was hilarious. I highly recommend checking him out during the rest of the comedy fest, which is this weekend. He does standup and he's also in groups called Chuckle Sandwich and Persimmony Whispers, whatever that may be. Then after the show, I was walking back up 18th to get home and I passed the bar the Angry Inch, where there was a guy holding a bloody towel to his head, talking to a bouncer and another guy as blood dripped off his nose. It must have just happened, the bloody guy was kind of stunned and asking about his beer, but his friend was saying stuff like "it wasn't really secured, it was loose," I guess trying to say that whatever his pal fell on or because of was loose, it wasn't because he was drunk. And right up the street was this big police van, a DUI truck, with cops milling around. They must not have noticed the bloody guy. They did, however, have a handcuffed lady in the truck saying "I ain't trippin'" over and over. People go nuts for St. Patrick's day. My bracket is doing well too. (link ought to work)
And I'm going to Nashville tomorrow. Look for me on TV, I'll be in a big yellow foam tricorner hat. 9:30 PM, GW - Ga Tech.

St. Patrick's Day


police van
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So I had a pretty kooky St. Paddy's day. Work was normal, but for my lunch break I went to GW to buy an NCAA tournament shirt. On the way out of the metro, there were some people holding signs saying stuff about histerectomies and how they were bad, like "you lose sensation" and weird stuff like that. It was odd. Then a bunch of drunk dudes in green were stumbling around, I guess from a bar crawl. The weird thing is that it's spring break, so GW isn't in session. I guess these were worker types who took the day off to get drunk. Then when I got to the bookstore, which is only open this week from 9 to 5, most of the shirts sucked, they were enormously long, like nightshirts, and went down to my knees. I did find a smaller one so I got that. The ride back there were more loud drunks on the train, which is usually normal, but not at noon on a weekday. So after work I went to see a comedy show at DCAC in Adams Morgan, part of the DC Comedy Fest. On the way there I decided to stop in a couple CD stores on 18th St. and look for the new CDs by Daft Punk and John Davis (former lead singer of Superdrag). Didn't find them, but on the way back, I saw a guy dressed like Uncle Sam holding a sign that said "Income Tax" on it. At first I thought he was some kind of weird anti-tax protestor, or maybe pro-tax, because he was standing at a place where there used to be a Kerry table. But then I realized he was advertising for a tax-prep place. The odd thing was, rather than say "hey, need your taxes done," he said "hey man, do you like art?" I said "yeah" and he gave me a flyer which was for a lady's art show, and on the back it was an ad for tax prep. Pretty odd. (Here's a picture of the guy, tried to be sneaky about it.)
So anyway, back to comedy. I missed the first group I wanted to see, Sketch 22, but I did catch the others, Season Six, an improv group made up of a few folks I knew from improv class and a guy I knew from GW, TJ Miller, who was doing standup. I also ended up seeing another standup who I'd seen once before. He was fairly amusing, as were the improv group, but TJ was hilarious. I highly recommend checking him out during the rest of the comedy fest, which is this weekend. He does standup and he's also in groups called Chuckle Sandwich and Persimmony Whispers, whatever that may be. Then after the show, I was walking back up 18th to get home and I passed the bar the Angry Inch, where there was a guy holding a bloody towel to his head, talking to a bouncer and another guy as blood dripped off his nose. It must have just happened, the bloody guy was kind of stunned and asking about his beer, but his friend was saying stuff like "it wasn't really secured, it was loose," I guess trying to say that whatever his pal fell on or because of was loose, it wasn't because he was drunk. And right up the street was this big police van, a DUI truck, with cops milling around. They must not have noticed the bloody guy. They did, however, have a handcuffed lady in the truck saying "I ain't trippin'" over and over. People go nuts for St. Patrick's day. My bracket is doing well too. (link ought to work)

3/17/2005

so I think I just found the best tasting hot dog vendor hot dog in DC: it's a lady's cart at the corner of G and 1st St NE, right next to the metro entrance for Union Station (and the G Unit street sign, which is amusing.) Anyway, it was a very juicy, tasty dog. All of which are pretty rare for hot dog cart dogs.

In other news, I saw this really funny article from Slate about which NCAA tournament teams to hate. Good stuff. And it was written by a couple of Washington City Paper writers, among others.

3/16/2005

so I thought this was amusing, it's an article from the NY Times about annoyances and what people do about them. For example, one guy always puts all the subscription cards that fall out of magazines in the mail, but leaves them blank so the companies have to pay for them anyway. And I always call the drinks at Starbucks "small," "medium," and "large" too. It's fun to be a curmudgeon.

3/15/2005

Not suitable for children under the age of 18


adultcereal
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
So I thought this was pretty funny. It's at the Safeway on Columbia Rd. in Adams Morgan. I guess the prizes in the cereal are stuff like condoms and guns. Or maybe they're selling Jenna Jameson-O's. Or Porn Flakes.
so as mentioned previously, here's the Kidz Bop version of Modest Mouse's "Float On." Pretty hilarious. Thanks to Rae for hosting the mp3.

3/14/2005

so it looks like my favorite graffiti guy, BORF, is getting some backlash around DC, and I'm starting to agree. Unless there are some copycats, it seems like he's getting overexposed, I'm seeing his tags everywhere, and they seem to be declining in quality. I guess it's cool to be all over the city, but I seem at least one or two a block now in Adams Morgan, and I even saw some on North Capitol the other day. DCist has a piece about people getting mad, with some funny comments. My favorite: "Borf is the Strokes of local graffiti."

Here's an example of the overexposure. I found two Borf tags on newspaper boxes on Columbia Road in Adams Morgan:


And here's the distance between them:
. That's like 10 feet. And it's across the street from another big one, which I'll post later.
so I thought this was pretty awesome, GW on the front page of the Post. It's a little blurry, but pretty awesome. It's the top. middle article with the photo of the happy guys.



And Ken Starr went to GW too. We dominate the Post!

There are also some good articles on GW and other local teams, mostly along the lines that GW is the only DC area men's team to make it to the NCAAs.

"GW is only game in town"

"For Colonials, NCAA bid is 'greatest feeling'". Love the photo.

Wilbon giving us some love.

More love from John Feinstein, who thinks we got shafted. I'm just happy to be there, but he has a point.

News about area women's teams, including GW, which also made it.

And the local teams:
Georgetown happy to get NIT bid
"Terps left out in the cold"

And finally, Tony Kornheiser's bracket. Funny stuff.

3/13/2005

so both GW's men's and women's teams made it to the NCAA tournament! The men are playing Friday, March 18 in Nashville, and I will surely be there. The women are playing Ole Miss on March 20 in Chapel Hill, NC. I'm pretty pumped about both of these, especially the men who won the Atlantic-10 tournament for the first time ever. The gwsports.com site has a new page for both the men and women, as well as brackets for both the men and women. I love that photo of the men's team celebrating. As for the pairings, Georgia Tech is a tough matchup, as they play a similar style of game as we do, I think, which is running a lot and fast breaks. And if we get past them, Louisville is a tough team too. As for the women, I honestly don't know much about Mississippi, and if we beat them, we'd face North Carolina, a very good team, on their home floor.

3/12/2005

so i've found some miscellaneous and cool sites from various places.

I found this site from a post by a friend on Friendster, it's an online painting tool where you can share your "art." Mine is "Sexy basketball."

The next one is the page of a guy who makes sculptures out of Legos. It's pretty awesome, and apparently he now works for them, coming up with new sets. That was my dream job when I was a little tyke.

And the last one is my roommate Angelo's website museum, it has pictures of old websites, like Yahoo from 1995. Pretty hideous stuff, and some of them I remember. It's funny how so many sites were grey with their name and that's it.

3/11/2005

so I thought this was a funny news article from Yahoo. Apparently a Norwegian study found that older siblings are smarter. I'm an only child, but my roommates have older siblings. Losers.

And also, I have been listening to the new Daft Punk album online from VH1.com, of all places. It's pretty good stuff! (Found via Stereogum, which keeps posting good songs and albums.)

3/09/2005

so I've been hearing some goofy-ass music lately. First, I heard this really funny band called Quit Your Day Job on WOXY. They're Swedish and write goofy, short electronic rock songs, like "Pissing on a Panda" (choice lyrics: "it's cool/ pissing on a panda/ real cool/ pissing on a panda") and "Look! A Dollar!" There are mp3s on their site, and the site itself is really amusing too.

Then I heard this weird Starbucks song mentioned on Stereogum. Apparently there was a meeting of Starbucks store managers or something and the heads of the company did a version of Jefferson Starship's "We Built This City" called "We Built This Starbucks." Check it out, it's funny and weird. (Scroll down to Feb. 24)

And also from Stereogum, via a Spin magazine writer, is the Kidz Bop version of Modest Mouse's "Float On." You may have seen the Kidz Bop commercials, it's basically little kids singing pop songs, like Justin Timberlake and people like that. But it's pretty odd hearing them sing about backing into cop cars and so on. (Unfortunately, the link to the mp3 isn't working. I'll post it when I can get the chance later tonight. It's bizarre.)

3/08/2005

GW women 62 - Temple 70


Gwtemple
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I went to see the A-10 women's basketball championship game yesterday at the Smith Center, GW versus Temple. It was not a great game for GW, Temple was pretty much kicking butt the first half. GW was taking and missing a lot of wild shots and turning it over a lot, but Temple turned it over a lot too, which kept the score from getting out of hand. Temple was up by 16 at one point, but GW came back in the second half. It was too little, too late though as Temple won 70-62. Two GW players had great games though, seniors Anna Montañana and Jessica Simmonds both scored more than 20. Montañana is amazing, she's a forward but passes so well, behind the back, no-look, etc. It's like watching Magic Johnson or something. Montañana is an All-America candidate too, she's the leading scorer and rebounder on the team, and is second in assists. And even with the loss, I think GW will make the NCAA tournament.

The weird thing about the game was the Temple fans: I have never seen more goofy looking people at a sporting event. I couldn't tell if I were at a Star Trek convention or a trivia bowl tournament. And I used to play trivia bowl at GW, so it takes one to know one. They had a lot of stupid signs too and were generally badly-behaved, tearing up some of the foam tricorner hats they give out to GW fans and so on. But I guess they were Philadelphians, so that comes with the territory.

The halftime show was hilarious too, it was a scrimmage between two girls' teams, maybe 6 year olds, they were little. I think the final score was 3-0, one girl hit a regulation three pointer, which was pretty impressive, especially since most of the other shots didn't make it up to the basket. They must use smaller balls in their games. It was sort of the youth-soccer style of play where everybody swarms the ball then somebody runs out with it out and everybody chases them. But it was fun and I hope the kids enjoyed it. Below is a photo from that game. Not sure where the ball is.

so I think the toilets at work have a computer virus. They're motion detector toilets where when you move away they flush, and I wrote awhile ago about one of them that kept flushing and flushing for no reason. However, now another one is doing it too, which is really annoying. It's like flushflush, flushflush, over and over. Maybe that's why there's so much lead in the water in DC, because our office bathroom is using all the clean water.

3/07/2005

so I've been following this plan in Texas where some government types are trying to build a system of quarter-mile wide superhighways across the state. Supposedly, these highways will alleviate traffic, let big trucks go faster, and make it so trucks and trains carrying toxic chemicals will avoid big cities. (Here's an article on Yahoo about it.) It's an interesting idea, but I doubt it will really alleviate traffic. For one thing, I learned in geography class that there's something called "induced demand," where if you build a new road, it will just fill up again. This happens for a number of reasons, including making people think it's an easier route, and that development will spread along the new road, making people need to travel on it. (This site has a bit more about the phenomenon.) And if this Texas superhighway has too many exits and development is allowed along it, or people use it for going to their friend's house across town rather than long distance travel like it's supposed to be used for, it will just create more sprawl and traffic. I mean, highway beltways around cities are supposed to get people to the other side of the city while avoiding downtown traffic, but in a lot of places (like San Antonio, for instance) it's basically just another road to put stores along and it gets really crowded. DC's Beltway has bad traffic because of the volume of cars, but it obviously has some development restrictions, because there really isn't much retail along it compared to some places. If it did have lots of stuff along it though, I'm sure it would be worse. Anyway, I thought it was a pretty interesting article. Only in Texas.
so sometimes I take cabs to work, and I have figured out a list of stuff I like and don't like about cabs.

I like cab drivers who speed, as that gets me to work faster, obviously.

I also like ones who play interesting music from other countries, and ones who don't smell bad.

However, there are a lot more things I don't like.
Cab drivers who drive painfully slow. I took one ride where the guy never went above 20 miles an hour, it sucked. I told him I needed to get there soon, and he said "ok," but didn't speed up.

I also don't like cab drivers who play smooth jazz, which seems to be lot of them. What I don't understand about smooth jazz is that it's supposed to be soothing and stuff, but it really makes me want to punch out the window and tear the headrests off the seats. Honestly, some songs should never be played, and especially not with a squawky sax and a xylophone.

I don't like guys who take roundabout routes or keep forgetting where I'm going. "714 right?" "No, 941." "714?" etc. And I feel like I've driven enough in DC to know that Connecticut Avenue is not the fastest route from Adams Morgan to Union Station.

I also hate it when cabbies won't drop you off on the corner you want, even if it just means going straight. "That will make it harder for me to go north again." Well, this corner will make me wait to cross the street. I guess that's a quibble, but if that really makes it harder for the cabbie to get where they're going, why not just eliminate the middle man and drop me off at the metro station closest to where they picked me up?

3/06/2005

so I saw Ambulance Ltd., VHS or Beta, and Robbers on High Street tonight at the Black Cat, and it was excellent. Probably the best show I've ever seen top to bottom, in that all three bands were great and could have been the headliner. Robbers on High Street opened and played their start-and-stop dancey rock to a pretty timid (and motionless) audience. They sounded great though, a lot like their CDs (the "Fine Lines" EP and the just-released "Tree City," both very good) and were good performers. VHS or Beta were probably the highlight: after a long sound check, they were damn near amazing. The lead singer sounds a lot like Robert Smith of the Cure and the band itself obviously takes some influence from them, but the music is a lot more electronic, almost like Daft Punk at times, which I think is a really good thing because I love Daft Punk. They also reminded me of the Faint, but with more of an 80s vibe. They were really good though, and I will definitely be buying the CD as soon as I get to a CD store. I wish more people were dancing (as did the lead singer, who commented on it a couple times during the set), because it was great booty-shaking jammy rock with cool drum machine beats. Plus one of the guys in the band had the most ridiculous mustache and hipster mullet, it looked like a wig and a stick-on 'stache. And they are from Louisville, which is pretty rare, I think, for an electronic rocking indie band. Ambulance LTD were good and solid as usual, as usual because this was their third time at the Black Cat in a year and they put on great shows opening for the Thrills and Elefant before. The band apparently were played on "The OC" recently, which would account for the large crowd of younger folks, 21 or less I'd say. The Black Cat's beer sales must have been hurting. They put on a good show as well with their gradually building, swirling, vaguely bluesy songs. I always think they remind me of some other bands, but I can never figure out which- they really sound unique and are reliably excellent in concert. They were much mellower than the other two acts and played "Anecdote," one of my favorites that they didn't play last time. I get the feeling this song was on "The OC," as people really seemed to know it, which is odd, because the last two times they were in town nobody seemed to know anything about them and this time they were singing along. They played a couple new songs as well (or at least songs that weren't on their very good album, "LP"), which were bluesier and countrier than their others, but both good. In short, it was an excellent show, and if any of the bands are playing soon in your area, then you ought to check them out. The three are playing in Philly tomorrow (the 6th), NYC the 7th, and at Duke University the 9th. And the Sierra Nevada beer at the Black Cat was very fresh. I've posted some pictures and links to their Myspace profiles (including a few samples) below.

Robbers on High Street (my favorite song on their Myspace profile is "Spanish Teeth")

VHS or Beta - also their Myspace profile, the songs don't do them justice.

Ambulance LTD

3/05/2005

Secret Machines, Moving Units, Autolux


movingunits
Originally uploaded by squidpants.
so I went to see the Secret Machines, Moving Units, and Autolux at the 9:30 Club last night, it was pretty good. The crowd seemed really young at first, but I guess old folks showed up later. Autolux were decent, solid shoegazer rock (kind of noodley, repetitive rock with swirling guitars), but they started to get boring towards the end of their set as they got more into long solos and feedback. They seemed to go on forever too, not a good sign. I was really looking forward to Moving Units the most our of the three bands, and they were good, but their sound wasn't that great. On the songs I've heard, the bass player is almost the lead, kind of like New Order with the high, clear bass, but it was mixed pretty low at the concert and hard to distinguish. They were catchy, but not a lot of folks were into it. Secret Machines, however, were very good. They had a cool light show and the sound was really crisp, the bass was rumbling. I also liked how they set up the stage, with all the drummer and keyboard player/lead singer at the front, facing towards each other, with the guitarist in the front center. Basically, they rocked out, they're also kind of shoegazery, but more energetic and catchy than Autolux, and a lot louder. And there must have been some kind of riot at a club down the street, as when I was in line I heard tons of people yelling, and supposedly during the show there were 50 police cars outside. Weird. And as usual, the 9:30 Club's draft beer tasted weird. I've never had fresh, normal tasting draft beer there, and their bottles are often pretty old tasting. Doh. The picture is of the Moving Units bassist.

3/03/2005

St. Joseph's 71 - GW 56

So St. Joseph's beat George Washington on Tuesday, which sucks, as it really puts a damper on GW's hopes for an at-large bid to the NCAAs. I still think we deserve one, especially if we win 2 or 3 more games (that would be at Rhode Island, then one or two in the Atlantic 10 tournament in Cincinnati,) but the pundits are divided. The game was really not that exciting, St. Joe's basically hit their shots, especially Pat Carroll who seemed not to miss, and GW played kind of out of control. Only Mike Hall seemed like he wanted to win, getting a double-double with 19 points and 10 boards. Which was too bad, because it was senior guard TJ Thompson's last home game. But the worst thing about the game was this loud St. Joe's fan girl sitting behind me. She had a really annoying voice, your typical New York rich girl accent, kind of like a higher version of the girl from MTV's Rich Girls whose dad wasn't Tommy Hilfiger. And she made sure to yell about every play.

I've posted a few photos of the St. Joe's Hawk, their mascot who goes to every away game. The Hawk is impressive, he flaps his wings without stopping for the entire game, like 3 hours straight, no matter what he's doing or what's happening on the court. He also showed up our lame bunch of mascots by running all over the court and doing funny stuff, while our doofuses just sat around and danced a little. The Hawk in mid-flap.
so my roommate D'Angelo just sent me this article about Bush appointing a bunch of guys tied up with the Iran-Contra scandal. According to the article, John Negroponte, Bush's selection for Director of National Intelligence, set up an army unit and covered up abuses and massacres by the Honduran army when he served as ambassador to Honduras. Then right before he was nominated to be intelligence czar, a bunch of Hondurans alleged to be war criminals were deported out of the U.S., apparently to avoid having to testify at his hearings. The other two men mentioned in the article, Otto Reich and Elliot Abrams, now have foreign affairs jobs in government and did similar things about Nicaragua, with Abrams getting indicted for covering up a massacre and Reich harassing reporters who wrote critical articles and planting ghost-written news articles in major U.S. newspapers. It's pretty scary stuff.

I found a similar editorial in the Asia Times as well. Yikes.

And I found some brief biographies of all three guys:

Otto Reich
Elliott Abrams
John Negroponte

3/02/2005

so there's a new Daft Punk album coming in two tuesdays, which is cool. Daft Punk is probably one of my top five favorite groups. I heard the new single, "Robot Rock," on WOXY radio. I haven't been able to find any mp3s anywhere, but it's a cool song. It's a simple, funky thing, and there's a slightly negative review at Pitchfork Media, but I like it more than they do. There's a little bit from the new CD, including an ecard with some brief soundclips, here.
so there's a lot of interesting stuff in the news:

The mint is coming out with another new nickel in honor of the Lewis and Clark expedition. It's got a buffalo on it. Buffaloes make tasty burgers.

The creator of the Macintosh computer died.

Scientists discovered some giant, ancient figures carved into hills in Peru, older than other similar carvings like the Nazca lines.

And Dan Froomkin had an interesting column in the Washington Post the other day, with a lot of bad news about Bush. He also posted Chris Rock's funny anti-Bush bit from the Oscars, which I pasted below:

"A lot of people like to bash Bush. I'm not going to bash Bush here tonight. I saw 'Fahrenheit 9/11.' I think Bush is a genius. I think Bush did some things this year nobody in this room could do -- nobody in this room could pull off.

"Bush basically reapplied for his job this year. Now, can you imagine applying for a job, and while you're applying for that job, there's a movie in every theater in the country that shows how much you suck at that job? It'd be hard to get hired, wouldn't it? Now I watched 'Fahrenheit' and I learned some stuff, man. And Bush did some things you could never get away with at your job, man. Never, ever ever. You know, when Bush got into office, they had a surplus of money. Now, there's like a $70 trillion deficit.

"Now just imagine you worked at the Gap. You closing out your register and it's $70 trillion short. The average person would get in trouble for something like that, right? Not Bush. No. then -- then, he started a war. That's cool. Support the troops. He started a war.

"Now, just imagine you worked at the Gap. You're $70 trillion behind on your register. And then you start a war with Banana Republic, 'cause you say they got toxic tank tops over there. You had the war. People are dying. A thousand Gap employees are dead, that's right, bleeding all over the khakis. You finally take over Banana Republic. And you find out they never made tank tops in the first place."

3/01/2005

so I was thinking on the way to work today: what would be in VH1's "I Love the 2000's" or whatever they would call it?

Well first off, they'd make fun of what to call the decade. Michael Ian Black would say "I love the... zero zeroes" in a very deadpan way, as usual. That Scottish guy would say "the aughts," etc. Then they'd make fun of all the Y2K stuff, and somebody would make a joke that it stands for something else. K for Kris Kristofferson or Kriss Kross or Kool-Aid or something, and there'd be a graphic that shows that. Then, when I was thinking about what happened in the last 5 years, I realized it was hard to tell what happened in 2000, and what happpened in the late 90s. But here are a few things I could think of.

Those jackets with all the sports teams logos on them, like all NFL teams
Throwback jerseys
Atkins Diet
Low rise boot cut jeans
New Balance shoes
Stripey shirts that guys wear
Red Bull, etc (with lots of the commentators drinking them)
Blogs (I can see Michael Ian Black doing this one again, "hmm, let me type in my blog how sad I am," then he frowns)
The Red Sox winning
Al Gore losing (lots of impressions here)
Maybe Bush's various malapropisms
Jackass (is that 2000?)
Maybe the big buzz bands, like the Strokes, etc
Along those lines, hipsters ("oh, I knew that band before you did, I'm cooler")
Cell phones and text messages
Paris Hilton (no idea why I thought of that after cell phones and text messages)
so I thought this was pretty funny, it's a video of legos doing Michael Jackson's "Thriller."