so I keep noticing indie rock being played in places I wouldn't expect it. For example, I went to Burger King the other day and they were playing Spoon. Then at Giant, the grocery store, they were playing "Last Nite" by The Strokes. I like this phenomenon, but it's weird.

And speaking of indie rock, the house where I used to live is in this video, it's the DC band Five Four practicing in the practice room. The bassist lives there, and I used to live in the basement and it was cool to hear the music every now and then. Folks in the hood liked it too, wafting into the street. They never played late at night though.


so going back to my Scrabble rant, my friends/consciousless opponents just played "lex" and "zoa" in their respective games. Fuck that and fuck Scrabulous. Those are not real words!

UPDATE: and yet "ok" is not an accepted word!??! Zoa, Ut, Al, Lex, Zee, Donna, and Hoy are ok words, but "ok" is not. What the hell!


so it's almost Christmas. Here's a Christmas jam, "Seasons Greetings" by Robbers on High Street, one of my favorite bands. This song is a cover of a song-poem, this thing that was popular back in the 50s to 70s - you'd write a poem, send it to this company, and they'd make a song out of it.

I like how some record labels are sending stuff out like this. Here's the band's site.


so this is a pretty cool video. It's a Keepon robot dancing to Spoon's "Don't You Evah."

There was one before where it danced to "I Turn My Camera On."


So I went to Knoxville for Thanksgiving. This was my favorite photo from there. I also have some of the Sunsphere (aka the Wigsphere from the Simpsons). They are here.


so Vladimir Putin is Time's Man of the Year. Are you kidding me?

But you know what, I think they just did it to get press. I'm not going to link to it. It's such a stupid pick, a dictator who squelches dissent, has journalists and political opponents killed, puts a lackey in power, etc etc, there's no way it could be a serious pick. But if they chose Al Gore or Ban Ki-Moon or somebody, would they get as much reaction? No.

Then again, check out their 1938 pick. (Apparently the covers floating around with him on them are fake, as he wasn't on the cover that year.)


so this is, I believe, the greatest Christmas song of all time: "Christmas in Hollis" by Run DMC.


so I've been playing Scrabble (or Scrabulous technically) on Facebook, and I am really getting sick of it. I know it uses a list of words, but there are so many bullshit words in there. One of my friends used "zee" twice. Zee isn't a word! It's the letter Z. Letters do not have words, that's stupid. But since it had a Z in it, he got tons of points.

There are other ones too, like "hoy," an archaic word for a flat bottomed boat. Of course no one uses that word, but if you google it you'll find it, and of course it got used against me. But while "zee" and "hoy" are ok, "zen" is not, which is bullshit. People use zen not as a proper noun all the time. "That is very zen." Then another time somebody used "donna." How the hell is donna a word? I got pissed off at my buddy who used "zee" twice and "donna" and he quit.

There ought to be some kind of Real Words Dictionary for Scrabble. I'm sick of these bullshit words.

UPDATE: my friend just played "ut". UT is not a word!!!


so I like basketball. I watch a lot of it, write about it, and so on. And I also like to play online games. I found this free game called Bazzer which is pretty cool. You manage a pro basketball team, train your players, trade guys, and play against other people from all over the world. It's pretty cool and is the only good and free basketball manager game I found on Google.

It doesn't require a big time commitment, as your team only plays one or two games a week - you basically set the lineup and say how the players should train, and that's it - you don't have to do the actual playing. You can also do stuff like sign sponsors, build an arena, and pretty much everything you can do with a real team. Check it out.


so I observed some Britney Spears driving today by a diplomat.

I was walking east on Indiana Ave/D Street NW outside the courthouse and saw an SUV with diplomatic plates. The guy backed up without looking so my coworker had to jump out of the way, then we noticed the guy had a little kid in his lap while driving. I should have gotten a photo with my cameraphone but unfortunately didn't. I don't remember his full plate, it was DA 0401 or something like that, which isn't a full plate anyway. I did tell a MPD officer parked two cars down, but he didn't seem too concerned and didn't immediately go after the guy. That sucks.

Of course, diplomats have immunity anyway (unless you are Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon 2)


so if I started a women's beer pong team, I'd call it Two Girls One Cup.

In unrelated news, my roommate and I were on Brooklyn Vegan the other day, that was pretty cool. We're the top picture in the post about Daft Punk on Halloween. Some of the other costumes are better, but we had musical accompaniment.


so the previous experiment is over. It didn't work out like I thought.

My fellow DCist writer Graham also writes for a music blog, The Rockist Society. They write about power pop and indie mostly - The Hold Steady, The Thermals, The Bigger Lovers, erc. The other day one of the writers saw Josh Groban at a random bar and got a picture with him. He posted the photo on the blog and said "Nice guy, bad music." Somehow, Groban fans (who call themslves "Grobanites") found this and tons of them commented on their blog about how mean they were, how they were jealous of Groban, how Groban is an angel, etc. It's a pretty hilarious comment thread.

The experiment here was to see if I get a ton more hits and angry 16 year old girls commenting by dissing Mr. Groban, but alas, it was not to happen. Worth a shot, and the comment thread is well worth reading.


so this is an experiment:

Josh Groban's music sucks. It's really bad. He is a bad singer. I bet he is a bad dude in real life too.

I'll say what the experiment is about once it's complete.


so this is a rapper named Drama. He's been on the front page of Myspace and stuff, and the picture always makes me laugh - he looks like Jamie Kennedy pretending to be a rapper.

And what's up with the beard? It looks ridiculous. Plus the guy is named Drama, which is a terrible rap name. Why not name yourself MC Desperate Housewives or something. And his music is pretty boring and generic.


so I heard the greatest news ever to come out of the Washington Nationals baseball club: they traded Ryan Church. Church was an absolute chump, my (and a bunch of my friends') least favorite Nat by far. He had mediocre stats (his .272 with 70 rbis last season), is getting up there at 28, and was so un-clutch player it was out of control. It seemed like any time I watched him and there were men on base he'd either strike out (107 on the year, 2nd on the team) or hit into a double play. When he was up with one or two outs you might as well go to the bathroom or get some food.

He ruined a no-hitter by the Nats awhile ago by flubbing a play in the outfield and tearing his pants in the process, and was just generally crummy. There was some other game I was at when the Nats were tied or ahead and they put Church in the outfield. I said something like "well there goes the game, Church is in." He then flubbed a play, made a bad throw, and lo and behold the Nats were down. I screamed "CHURCH YOU SUCK!" (I was sitting in the front row) and I think he heard me. Statistics just don't show his terribleness.

For example, here is a typical Church play, from DCist
Ramon Ortiz threw a potential double-play ball into center field, allowing a run to score, and Ryan Church nearly fell down fielding a ball in center—turning a 1-run single into a 2-run double.
I said many many times during the season that they should trade Church for a box of balls or a couple of bags of grass seed or a pizza, so it's not really important who the Nats got. However, this was actually good too, as the team received Lastings Milledge from the Mets, who is a young and gifted, but apparently kind of troubled, outfielder. The Yahoo article says his teammates didn't like him much and posted a note in their locker room (when they were at RFK coincidentally) that said "Know your place rook -Your Teammates." But hopefully he can get that stuff in line. Dmitri Young had some issues before he came to the Nats but has been fine since he arrived, and is a fan favorite. Apparently Church is going to start for the Mets in right field. Sorry Mets, welcome to suck.

The only bad part about the trade is that the Nats gave up Brian Scheider, a gritty catcher who, unlike Church, got a lot of clutch hits. He also seemed to handle the pitching staff well. I guess that means youngster Jesus Flores will catch. Flores was decent offensively in his limited time, but I thought Schneider was better with the pitchers and defensively.

And apparently the Nats are looking into Andruw Jones and Corey Patterson, which would be cool.

But who cares, Church is gone!


so I like to send text messages. However, I hate my phone's T9 predictive text thing. For one, it doesn't have bad words. Instead I get "duck" and "shiv." Thanks a lot, Verizon. And when I type "hey" it always suggests "hew." Do people really use the word "hew" that often? Unless the phone is only used by lumberjacks, I doubt it.

It also doesn't do conjunctions well, so it looks like I have bad grammar: "Im going, dont know if shes gonna go or not." To add insult to injury, it suggests "dnot" first instead of "dont." Every now and then it'll suggest one with an apostrophe, but it seems random. And I just discovered today that if I try to type "emailed" it suggests "emailde" first. That's not even a word!

Maybe I just don't know how to use it, but it's annoying. And there doesn't seem to be a "learn word" feature, which would be useful for work and cursing. Duck Verizon.


so it's pretty funny to read the keywords people search for when they find my blog. Here are a few, with my explanations:

-flex plexico (I wrote about this guy awhile ago)
-dirt mcgirt chips (wrote about Lil Romeo chips)
-jammy space invaders blogspot (???)
-funny registered names for dogs (wrote about this twice)
-sc schwerzenbach jacket (mentioned this briefly)
-name of rap group that has a midget (the little superstar video, I guess)
-mr goodbar hershey personality (I wondered why there are no full size Krackel bars)
-word to your mom (no explanation needed)
-what happened to bud dry (good question)
-what song do harold and kumar end up jamming to in the suv? (i mentioned the movie, but not the song)
-trip to fucking, austria (this)


so I'm watching college football on ESPN, and the stadium for Troy University is called "Movie Gallery Veterans Stadium." This is an example of naming rights gone wrong. It sounds like there are veterans of the movie gallery, and it's pretty damn lame to match the two together. I don't think there's a Movie Gallery Day national holiday, for example.



Originally uploaded by squidpants
So I saw this at CVS the other day. What the hell? What's next, Gingivitis Brand Hand Soap? Athlete's Foot Nasal Spray? Earwax Shampoo?


so this is a pretty hilarious website: passiveaggressivenotes.com. Just what it sounds like. Apparently the note to the right was from a girlfriend to her boyfriend. Man, I would break up with her immediately if I got that.

Also, Wikipedia rules. Did you know that there's a statue of Uma Thurman's grandmother at the southernmost part of Sweden? No? How about that there's a Mount Terror in both Antarctica and Washington state? Or that the island of Saba looks really awesome? Well consider that small section of your brain filled now.


so here's a video. Italian Spiderman.

Italian Spiderman Trailer

Add to My Profile | More Videos


Red Rocks
Originally uploaded by IntangibleArts
so I went to some newish places in Columbia Heights and Petworth recently.

The Red Derby is a new little bar at 14th and Spring in Petworth, and it's pretty cool. It has a good atmosphere, kinda neighborhoody and laid back, and they have beers only in cans, which is neat. It's cheaper, for one, and they have a good variety - everything from Natty Boh ($2) to Dale's Pale Ale to Brooklyn and Boddington's and Guinness. They also had some Belgian pilsner and a bunch of other things, with the most expensive being $5 or $6. Plus cans mean you won't get a skunky beer. The staff was really friendly and they have pretty good grub - fried macaroni and cheese, sweet potato fries, and the usual burger, chicken fingers, etc. There's a pool table in the back too. It's a neat place and I'd like to hang out there more often.

Red Rocks is a small pizza place at 11th and Park in Columbia Heights. It also has a nice atmosphere, with a few tables and a little bar, a patio, and I think a second floor (not sure). The pizzas were good, if a little stingy on ingredients - the pesto one didn't have much pesto, and the other one we got didn't have much meat. It was pretty good, but I prefer Radius or Matchbox. But it's close and nice.


so I almost got in a fight a minute ago. I was walking down the sidewalk from McDonalds, and a guy was coming towards me and my coworker. I moved to the left and the guy moved the same way, so we both had to stop. It happens a million times every day and nothing comes of it - somebody moves, no biggie.

However, this guy said "get out the way" angrily, which pissed me off. He walked by and I shrugged in the "what the hell" way, so he stopped and we argued a bit. He said I should have got out the way, do I think I'm special (or something to that extent) and I said he didn't have to be rude about it, excuse me would be fine. I said whatever and kept walking, and he yelled that I was a "trick," which is a pretty lame insult if you ask me. Might as well just call me a "boogerhead" or something.

It always amazes me how people act like assholes for no reason whatsoever. I guess this guy has to act tough to feel better about himself or to make him think he has control of his life or something. I probably shouldn't have raised my arms in hindsight, but whatever.


so I got a new CD in the mail, "Volcano" by Hot Springs. They're a two-girl, two-guy band from Montreal who play loud, not-quite-garage rock. Singer/guitarist Giselle Webber is the driving force on the album - her bluesy, scratchy voice elevates otherwise straightforward garage rockers like "Head Rush" and draw the focus on the others, like "Fantôme Dinosaure," a catchy French-language stomper.

Her somewhat accented vocals remind me of Karen O's wail when they're loud (the carnival-rock "Tiny Islands,") Bjork when they're quieter ("Fog and the Horn,") and Cerys Matthews from Catatonia in between. The lyrics are sometimes hard to understand due to Webber's accent and vibrato, but it's an interesting effect, and they're amusing when you can understand them - "she drinks salt water and cocaine/told me it put hairs on her brain," on "38th Adventure."

Hot Springs sound like one of those bands that could tear a place apart, and the live reviews seem to hold up that notion - calling them "lunatic", "thrillingly intense" and so on. And in a recent show, they covered themselves in mud. I'd like to see them.

They have their own Flickr account too.


so it's that time of year again - my bi-annual "Spring Forward-Fall Back Is Stupid" post. And guess what - it's stupid.

I really don't see the point for it - it gets dark around 5 pm, meaning every office in the country has to turn on their lights earlier. It also means it gets colder, so everybody runs their heating more. It means fewer people go out shopping or to get exercise. At least the government decided to delay it a little longer this year, but they really should delay it indefinitely. It just seems like a relic of the past.

Wikipedia says "Adding daylight to afternoons generally benefits retailing, sports, and other activities that exploit sunlight after working hours,[1] but it can cause problems for farmers and others whose hours depend on the sun.[2] Extra afternoon daylight appears to cut traffic fatalities;[3] its effect on health and crime is less clear. An early goal was to reduce evening usage of incandescent lighting, formerly a primary use of electricity;[4] nowadays, though, DST sometimes increases overall electricity costs and peak demand." They also mention lower crime and more when it stays light later.

So there are tons of benefits to keeping it lighter later, and apparently the only benefit is to farmers. Hey farmers: eat it. Grow up and set your alarms early to get up an hour earlier. They always say the farmers' day starts when the chickens (or is it cows) wake up, so who cares what time it is? If it's dark out and a rooster is crowing, does it matter if it's 5 am or 6 am or 7 am? No. Farmers can get bent and deal with it.


so I went to Berkeley and SF awhile ago and went to a little breakfast/coffee shop place called Sconehenge. I thought that was pretty funny. If I opened a bakery I'd call it Everybody Must Get Sconed.


so Halloween is my favorite holiday, hands down. Everybody has fun, and there's rarely any crap going on, like people being sad on Valentine's Day, family feuds on Christmas and Thanksgiving, and so on. The whole goal of the day is to dress like something funny (or unoriginally sexy, for some girls), and that's awesome. I pretty much never stop laughing on Halloween, and I plan my costume way in advance to get something good. People who don't dress up, however, I am suspicious of. Maybe they're commies. And plus, there's tons of candy. It's pretty much the best holiday possible.

And here's a good video:


so i found this website, Freerice, where you answer vocabulary questions and the UN World Food Program distributes rice to starving people. Sounds great right?

Wrong, it doesn't work half the time. I'll click on the right answer, and it'll say "Sorry, try again" and show what I clicked on. What the hell? "Grouchy" and I'll click "Irritable" and it says "Sorry, try again, grouchy=irritable." I can't find an email on the site, but they need to get this fixed! I tried it with both Firefox and IE, both have issues.

UPDATE: It works now. Donate rice!


so this is pretty funny. Brohemian Rhapsody

The full-size version is better


so a lot of have asked me about the Wackazoid. It is pretty much the most extreme thing ever. The Wackazoid started out as our wiffle ball team mascot. It is from the Planet Wackazoid in some awesome galaxy, and it's everything that is totally extreme to the max. It's a lightning bolt that's on fire, carrying a boombox, surfing, giving the thumbs up, wearing RADICAL sunglasses and wearing a backwards hat. There's a space shuttle. He hangs out with Khan from "Wrath of Khan" and breaks bottles over his nuts. Take that Chester Cheetah.

But aside from looking extreme, it is totally extreme. Check out the Myspace page.


so I'm not sure how I feel about this. Rivals.com has a video section about college football, and a lot of them are hosted by a hot chick. They're kind of interesting and informative, but at the same time, it's like "hey, look at my boobs." Does she know anything about sports? Maybe she's just a talking head. But then again, maybe she really does. Is it a crass marketing technique? Is she really a college football expert? Who knows. I watched some anyway.


so I don't know if I have terrible luck or what, but the Starbucks on New Jersey Ave NW sucks. There's usually a long line, which isn't really their fault, but it always takes forever for me to get my drink. The worst was about a month ago when it took at least 10 minutes to get my drink with a bunch of people behind me getting theirs first. After sitting and waiting then I decided to boycott the place in favor of the one at 7th and Indiana, which is much better. Au Bon Pain is closer, but their drinks are way too sweet.

Today, however, it was raining, so I went to the New Jersey Ave Starbucks - the joke was on me. There wasn't a line, but again, about 5 people behind me got their drinks, so I asked the baristas if mine was coming. One of them said "nobody ordered that," and I said "I did." So she made it and plopped it down without saying anything. I said "is this the pumpkin" and she didn't respond, so I said "Thank you very much" loudly and walked out. That place sucks.


so I like soccer. I like the US national team, which kind of means I am a glutton for punishment. But they actually won yesterday, beating Switzerland 1-0. And the Swiss are not as bad as you might think, they did pretty well at the last World Cup, they were 3-0-1 before losing to the Ukraine in the round of last 16.

The US team had a lot of guys I'm not familiar with (GK Brad Guzan, Dan Califf, Danny Szetela, Benny Feilhaber, Michael Bradley, Heath Pearce, Robbie Findley) but the team won thanks to Bradley's goal. He's also the coach's son. But I guess a new lineup is good, considering how bad the US team was in the last world cup (no wins, two losses and a tie).

I was happy to see no Landon Donovan, as he is terrrrrible internationally for some reason - both at the World Cup and in his brief, awful stint with Bayer Leverkusen in Germany. At Leverkusen, he couldn't crack the starting lineup and bitched at his coach during games, which led the fans to hate him. I really think he makes the US look bad, because he's good in the MLS, but stinks in Europe, so folks think that the MLS is a bad, bad league. But apparently he's done OK lately for the national team.

And while I'm bitching, I think Oguchi Onyewu has been a bust. He got a lot of hype before the World Cup, and he was really bad in it, committing a foul in the penalty box, which Ghana then converted for the win. And he was bad in the Switzerland game too: "Oguchi Onyewu also was at fault for a few aimless long balls from the back as the U.S. team struggled to carve out any scoring opportunities in the first half." He's still young though, so maybe he'll improve.

But anyway, hooray US.

Photo by Pius Koller, isisports


so this is a pretty good jam and clever video. It's "Take me Home" by Brother Ali, a rapper who happens to be a blind albino Muslim. No, really. Check it out.


Originally uploaded by squidpants
So TJ Miller, a guy I know from GW, is on the ABC show "Carpoolers." The "Living with Carpoolers" video on their site is actually about him, and it's pretty funny. When he moved to LA he lived with Jerry O'Connell, one of the stars, who says a lot of funny stuff about him. And O'Connell is married to Rebecca Romijn (no longer Stamos) too. Not a bad deal.

Anyway, on the show TJ plays Marmaduke, the lazy/dumb son of Fred Goss and Faith Ford's characters, who sits around all day in his underwear. He actually never wears pants on the first episode. Check out the show, which is OK, though TJ's parts are pretty good. And there are a couple other random pics on my Flickr.

And here's TJ back in the day as part of GW's recess comedy group. He's the one in the blue.


so I got a bunch of free CDs recently. One of them is "The Else," the 12th album by They Might Be Giants. Like many people of generation Y or whatever it is my generation is called these days, I used to be a huge fan of TMBG, having all their albums up to "Mink Car." At that point, and also like a lot of people my age, my interest started to wane. I still appreciate them but I never really listen to any of it anymore, and while the newer music is solid, to me it lacks that quirky fire their old stuff used to have. That's understandable, considering they, and their audience, have aged and even matured (arguably not in my case though).

This album is mostly solid pop songs, pretty straightforward musically but with the trademark quirky/hard to understand lyrics. It doesn't seem too earth-shattering the first time I listened to it, but many of the songs grew on me with repeated listens. "Climbing the Walls," an ode to working, sounds like it could have been on the "John Henry" album, but has one of the Johns (can never tell which is which) expanding his vocal range, which is neat to hear.

"Take Out the Trash" is led by bouncy bass, "With the Dark" varies genres and kooky bits quickly, and "I'm Impressed" has a more indie rock sound than I'm used to from them. "The Shadow Government" is one of the better tracks on the album, it's more overtly political than most of their songs, wishing the shadow government had taken over the U.S., and it reminds me of Teenage Fanclub with the refrain "it's a bad bad world." Plus the song starts with the line "driving home from my meth lab," which is pretty funny.

"Bee of the Bird of the Moth" is typical goofiness, as the title attests, and "The Mesopotamians" is this album's "James K. Polk" or "Meet James Ensor," songs about relatively obscure people. This one talks about ancient kings of the area and some other historical places, like Mohenjo-Daro. However, it's not quite as interesting musically as those two previous songs and kind of seems like a retread, trying to be fun and random like the others, but not working.

But it's a solid album, and I liked it more than I thought I would. The songs grow on you and it has the usual good musicianship and songwriting of their other albums. Check it out if you were a TMBG fan, you might like them again.


so I went to the City Paper's Crafty Bastards fair this sunday, it was alright. There was some neat stuff, but a lot of it was too expensive for my bones (which admittedly are fairly cheap) and half the booths were cute monsters - stuffed ones, prints, shirts etc, of cute squids, ghosts, and various other monsters. Observe: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14.

But hey, it was fun and something to do. Just next time, fewer monsters, or at least more variety.


so I'd never really seen a Strokes video before, but this one is pretty funny. I won't ruin it:


so I've really been liking this jam recently. It's "Hearts on Fire" by Cut Copy. Kind of a lame song name, but it's a good one. An 80s-early 90s sounding electro rock song, it's got a lot of Me Decade touches, like sax blasts, space keyboard breakdowns, and New Order high-tuned bass, and it has a great beat.

Cut Copy are Australian and do a lot of good similar stuff. This is a single off an upcoming disc. I can't find a video for it, but the song is on the Myspace.

They have an official blog too.


so I just read that Mattel apologized to China for giving them bad publicity. Are you kidding me? Chinese companies made tons of toys with high lead levels, forcing Mattel to recall them, and Mattel apologizes? That's ludicrous. Here's the apology.
"Mattel takes full responsibility for these recalls and apologizes personally to you, the Chinese people and all of our customers who received the toys."
Obviously the Chinese got angry at Mattel, and Mattel caved. What a bunch of babies. A Chinese official added this.
"You cannot recall 10,000 products just because one is substandard. This is unacceptable," he said.
I'm glad they take a lot of precautions there. Mattel said the flaws were their fault, which I believe about as much as when somebody in a scandal resigns from a job to be with their family.

I thought this was pretty lame of Mattel to do, and I emailed them about it. You should do the same! corporate.communications(at)mattel.com


so I got interviewed for an article about Wikipedia in the GW student paper, which is pretty funny.

My interests are rap music and drinking games. But unfortunately the writer didn't mention my proudest contribution to Wikipedia, which was creating the article for "Disorderlies," that movie starring the Fat Boys.


so cricket has so many weird terms. For some reason, Gmail puts cricket headlines on my main page occasionally, and I like to click on them to read news that makes no sense to me. For example:
The Bangladeshis were struggling at 103 for three after 16 overs when Lee came on for his second spell. Aftab Ahmed hit a boundary followed by a single but Lee then had Shakib al Hasan caught behind for 16.

New batsman Mashrafe Mortaza predictably stepped away to try to slog the next ball but was deceived and bowled by a slow yorker. Alok Kapali was trapped on his crease and was out leg before wicket first ball.

Lee finished with three for 27.
Yeah, you said it! I guess baseball and other sports have lots of terms too, but it's interesting to see big news that is completely nonsensical to me, but is still in English.

Plus that guy looks like he has a potbelly and one arm is way bigger than the other, which is not something you see on most athletes.


so I'm a big fan of this video.


There are Parts One and Two also, but no part three apparently.


so maybe I'm getting older, or maybe I just don't care, but it seems like I'm getting further removed from pop culture. I keep hearing about TV shows, music, movies, and people who are all over the news, but I have no idea who they are. Eventually I learn what they are, but I've still never seen them or heard them or what have you.

Going back a little while, I'd never heard that band Hinder. Apparently some show called "The Hills" is big on TV, no clue, never seen it or knew it was on. Rihanna (who I hear is a big star but whom I wouldn't be able to pick out of a police lineup) has some huge hit song called "Umbrella." "High School Musical" is really successful? I dunno. There's some show called "Ice Road Truckers"? Etc etc.

I'm not sure what it is. Is it just that I'm out of touch, or not the target audience for this stuff? Or maybe pop culture has accelerated so that things become "huge" overnight, then fade away just as fast - or along those lines, maybe all these things are being hyped as huge hits when really they aren't.

But in any case, I'm not really worried to be missing this stuff. My feeling is if I was meant to see it, I would.


so i wish there were more commercials like this


so this video has been super popular at work ever since Appalachian State beat Michigan in football. It's ridiculous and terrible.

You can just tell it was created by some committee of dumb administrators, and lo and behold, it was. The school newspaper reports on the video, saying it was made for a state tour by, you guessed it, a committee. It was on VH1 and elsewhere, and got even more hits after the big win.

A university spokesman is trying to distance the school from the video, saying the video was created for a tour through the state by the university, and that "somebody probably picked the video up from the Internet when it was linked to the Appalachian Family Caravan Web site and is now using it for purposes other than for what it was created." The spokesman thinks "the video will not directly hurt the way Appalachian is viewed and hopes people who know the university understand the video was taken out of context."

Good luck with that, considering how much we've been laughing at it, and one alum said "I sincerely hope this is some kind of joke video. If not, ASU will never again see a dime of my money."

For those unfamiliar, ASU is in Boone, NC, and is kind of a hippie school.


so Japan is a completely wacked country. I'm amazed they get anything useful done at all.


RIP Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson Materials
Originally uploaded by PAgent
so Michael Jackson died today. Not the crazy guy, Michael Jackson the beer hunter. He was an English beer writer, probably the most famous beer critic and writer out there. I have two of his books, and being beer nerds, my friend Adam and I actually met him and got his autograph on a Brickskeller menu.

We used to live 2 blocks from the Skeller and would go there all the time. Knowing we were beer nerds, one of the regular waitresses pointed him out so we went over and said hi. The books are pretty good, so check them out.


so this guy, Monkeyerotica, is a frequent and hilarious commenter at DCist.com. One of the DCist writers just pointed out that he has an awesome webpage, with pulp fiction stories about a monkey detective. It's ridiculous. Check out some of his stories' blurbs:
The Internet Murders (The Chimp's Gotta Gun!): Dick Burns teams up with adult film star Nina Hartley against an unholy cabal of anti-sex feminists and CIA hitmonkeys.

The Chickasaw Gravelpacker: A hermaphroditic Chinaman takes the Speaker of the House Hostage in a hideously perverted plot to change his gender.

Blood and Garlic: A brainwashed assassin runs amok in DC and is looking for a really good plate of ziti. Burns serves one up hot and steaming.
Wow. And the stories themselves are equally hilarious. One starts "Dick Burns was practicing Louie, Louie on his balalaika when the phone rang." But don't take my word for it!


so it's time for another cool video. This one is the Hipster Olympics, which is pretty much 100% spot on in every detail. Awesome

Hipster Olympics

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so this is an amazing video. Unfortunately I can't find much about the guy, or if it was a joke or serious.

However, one guy on Youtube says they're jazz musicians.
...I think he is jazz keyboardist and conductor Olli Ahvenlahti. The Bassist seems to be Pekka Pohjola, who played a while in Mike Oldfield's band. They just aren't customed to BUMP.


so the dispute about who owns the North Pole has been in the news lately - the Russians sent a sub under the ice to symbolically claim it, while other countries objected - Canada says they own it, and Norway and the US are getting into the act. Everybody has different reasons - we're closer, our continental shelf goes there, etc.

I've noticed that Canada's maps are reflecting their claim, like this one from a government website, which shows the territory extended into the ocean all the way to to pole. However, most non-Canadian maps only show the land itself, not the claimed or economic zone or anything (like the CIA World Factbook one, for example).

Maps and things are always political, like this article shows. Other examples are maps made by China which show Taiwan as part of China, maps by Argentina including the Falklands, etc. It's kind of an interesting method of information warfare. For example, Wikipedia has the map of Canada that shows the border to the North Pole, which I assume was added by a Canadian.

I guess this might happen in Antarctica if they discover minerals there. I hope there aren't any Hoth type battles or killer Arctic space monsters though.


so this is amazing. A guy in prison sued Michael Vick for "$63,000,000,000,00 billion" (sic) dollars, which if I'm not mistaken is $6,300,000,000,000,000,000,000. He says Michael Vick stole his dogs, sold them on eBay, and used the proceeds to buy missiles from Iran. He also says Vick used drugs in school zones and subjected him to microwave testing, and on and on and on. And that Vick violated a bunch of constitutional amendments.

Here's the article and the absolutely hilarious lawsuit itself (hand written on looseleaf paper).


so here's today's weather report.

This guy is awesome


So I finally got a new housemate, and he has a Wii. It's pretty sweet. Both my arms are a little sore from playing, mainly Wii Sports and mainly the baseball game.

Wario Ware is fun too, it's just a bunch of totally random weird minigames that last about 3 seconds each - pulling hair out of a nose, shooing a fly, etc. It's a good party type game, as we found one Friday night.

Anyway, I recommend it. It's kind of a workout too, though you don't have to make big motions if you don't want to.

And this Japanese safety manual for it is funny. Don't hit your friend in the face, knocking his glasses off. Don't pour orange Gatorade on your Wii. Don't stick a clover in it. Don't let a snowman attack it.


so for my 750th post, here's "Chocolate Rain." It's a dumb/weird/bizarrely hypnotizing song that is stuck in my head now. It's even got a Wikipedia article.

I also like the take-off.

And there's this one.


So the Nationals beat the Giants yesterday. Austin Kearns, Felipe Lopez, and Brian Schneider all hit home runs and Washington scored four in the 8th to win it. Nothing else interesting happened in the game.


so I just saw that movie "Smokey and the Bandit." It was pretty bad.

It was obviously made to capitalize on the trucker/CB radio thing that was pretty popular for awhile (like CW McCall's "Convoy" song). For the first part of the movie, Burt Reynolds and Sally Field (who is surprisingly good looking) are funny together, and the other guy, Jerry Reed (who also played the bad coach in "Waterboy") was pretty funny. Unfortunately, the rest is corny.

Lots of things happen for no reason at all - a Japanese guy crashes into a car, they're suddenly in the forest, random people show up, it's weird. It's almost like the story parts of the movie were cut out, leaving only double entendres and car chases. And they mentioned Coors beer about 100 times. It had to have been one of the first big time product placement movies. And the music is all about what's happening in the movie, which is also lame.

So anyway, not that people are really clamoring to see this, but if it's On Demand or something, steer clear.


so there's a lot of these videos floating around the YouTubes - "NFL Fantasy File," NFL players doing amazing stuff. However, I think most, if not all, are fake.

For example, this one of Jason Campbell throwing two passes and having them bounce off each other.

For one, the sound of the balls hitting seems fake. Then the bounce doesn't seem real, the physics seems wrong. And the angle of the balls doesn't seem right when they come back in the screen. I'm not buying it.

UPDATE: see, i'm not crazy. Dan Steinberg from the Post thinks it's fake and interviewed Jason Campbell, who didn't give him a straight answer. Signs point to fake city USA.


so this movie looks absolutely terrible


so I've heard a fair amount about this guy Patrick Wolf. People mention him on their Myspaces and Facebooks and blogs and whatnot. I listened to a couple songs and they didn't do anything for me, kind of boring. But then I saw his picture and decided I'd never listen to him. Look at this clown.

This guy's the definition of "tries too hard." "Hey, I'll get ridiculous poofy hair and sit on a carousel. That will be witty and clever. Then I will get a tattoo of a unicorn (?!?!) above my skinny boob." Every picture is like "I am so sad and vulnerable, :(" It's just lame. And anyway, his name is Patrick Wolf. Dumb.


so I was typing www.myspace.com into my browser and did a typo: www.mu , then hit return, and lo and behold, it's an actual site. It's hotels in Mauritius, a little island nation in the Indian Ocean, which happens to have .mu as its website domain. Pretty weird.

I also discovered (reading Maxim) that .tt is Trinidad and Tobago. I wonder if I can buy Bu.tt , but unfortunately, it costs $1000. Man, I wish I had $1000 right now. That would be the best website ever.

- Hey, what's your email?
- andrew@bu.tt



so I think saying "with apologies to" is really dumb. I see it when people make puns or take-offs on quotations (and sometimes titles or photographs). To me, it seems really pointless, other than trying to seem smart because you know some famous person's quote or book or what have you. I really doubt the famous person will actually find your apology, and in the unlikely event they did, I doubt they'd care.

This is what inspired it, a random Facebook photo, but I've seen it all over the place. If you can't see it, it's a photo of three women, and the caption is "Three Women (apologies to Robert Altman)."


so here's an update on my quest to get Fucking, Austria and Condom, France to become sister cities.

I emailed a lot of safe sex and AIDS nonprofits and NGOs, including UNAIDS (the United Nations AIDS agency), Until There's a Cure, Product RED, the AIDS Alliance, Oxfam, the World Health Organization, AIDS Action Europe, and HIV Europe.

So far the only response I got was from Product RED, who said "Thanks for your idea!" But I'm going to keep at it.

Anybody have suggestions for places or people to email?


I lost the Nationals game

nice seats
Originally uploaded by squidpants
So my buddy Cam called me yesterday and said he had tickets to the Nationals-Astros game and was I interested? I said hell yes and went. Turns out they were awesome seats, the 5th row behind home plate. So nice they even have cushions and a server. Pretty cool. I looked at them and they said $120. Apparently the bank of the company where Cam works had them and he got them.

Anyway, it was pretty fun, the players in the on deck circle (and even the Astros dugout) were really close, so I decided to heckle them. My first target was Hunter Pence, a rookie. He was standing in the on deck circle and I yelled "Hey Pence, I've never heard of you!" Some folks laughed, but then the guy batting was out and the inning was over.

Next inning, Mr. Pence was up first and kept fouling it off. I yelled "Hey Pence, you're hitting it the wrong way!" and then, the next pitch, he hit a home run. Considering how close I was, I assume he heard me. So that was pretty funny. I was wondering if he'd look my way on the way back, but I don't think he did. It put the Astros up 3-2, and they went on to win 4-2. You can actually see the homer on his player page above, where it says "Pence's homer 400k".

So after that I only heckled the presidents, such as "Hey Teddy, your brother's better!" to the Teddy Roosevelt mascot. It was fun, but too bad the Nats lost. Luckily the Nats did win two of the three games in the series with the Astros.

The game also reaffirmed my love of heckling. Cam and I used to hekcle it all the time at GW women's basketball games because everybody could hear you, due to the small crowds. And GW was good, so that helped. Usually it was pretty harmless or dumb stuff, making fun of the opposing coach, making dumb puns, saying nonsense.

I wish I were a rich guy who could afford those Nats seats and I could just sit there and yell dumb stuff at the opposing team all day. It's fun. I think most of the people sitting around me laughed a couple times, and I only got a couple nasty looks. I consider that a success. Aside from the game losing home run.


so I got this MP3 in my email the other day, "Acceptable in the 80s" by Calvin Harris. He's a Scottish guy who fronts a disco goofball group, a bit like a more funky, jokier Hot Chip or a straight version of the Scissor Sisters. His first album "I Created Disco" is set to come out in the US September 4th. Apparently he made it on an old Amiga computer.

The music is pretty bass heavy and definitely fits with the album title. About the music, he says "Disco disappeared, didn't it? Everyone got sick of it. Now I'm reviving it, with space goggles, or something." His Scottish accent and occasional falsetto makes the vocals almost comical, but it fits.

Considering they're all disco dancey songs, they're diverse. "Rock N Roll Attitude" on his Myspace page has repetitive plucked bass like a lost !!! song, and "Merrymaking at My Place" is a jokey jam about partying with funnily repetitive lyrics like "Come into my house/You're invited into my house/Enter in the back of my house/" and so on about going into his house. "Wild Scenes" has choppy samples like a Daft Punk song, and so on.

It's fun stuff, here's the video for "Acceptable in the 80s." The rodent thing in the video has his own Myspace page too.

Official site


so I had my least favorite recurring dream last night. It's not really a nightmare, but it's not a good dream either. It happens every now and then, I dream that I'm waking up and get out of bed. Then I brush my teeth, get showered, shave, put on my clothes, eat breakfast, and all that stuff, getting ready for work. I usually think "ah, this is nice, leaving for work early."

Then I wake up and I'm still in bed, not ready for work. So that sucks. All that work for nothing. I guess it's my body's way of telling me to get out of bed, but since it seems like I already am, I don't. Pretty weird huh?


so I've known about towns with names like Bumpass, Virginia, Fucking, Austria, Intercourse, Pennsylvania, and Dildo, Newfoundland (which is only about an hour trip from Conception Bay, figure that one out). But browsing a list on Wikipedia, I discovered Condom, France.

I think Condom and Fucking should become sister cities. Not only would it be hilarious, it'd be a good way to promote safe sex. I bet it'd get a lot of play (pun!) in newspapers and blogs, and everybody would forward it to everybody else. So I'm going to start the campaign!

I'm gonna email the Sister Cities nonprofit, UNAIDS, the International AIDS Society, and whatever other nonprofits I can think of. But before that, I'm going to visit this lovely little town.


A bus blew up by my old house

Fwd: bus!
Originally uploaded by squidpants
so this is across the street from where I used to live in Logan Circle. Pretty nuts. It was Friday on Rhode Island Ave NW between 11th and 12th. I saw and could smell the smoke from blocks away when I got off the Metro and went over to see what was going on. By the time I got there, it was just a charred, smoking bus because the firemen had put it out, but my old roommates (who took the picture) told me about it, as did my current roommate's girlfriend, who lives in the house right where the trolley is. Apparently it was on the way to get repairs and started smoking, then boom! The only person on it was the driver, who had gotten off before the explosion, and nobody was hurt. Yikes!

I wrote about it for DCist and the fire department has more photos and a video, which is wild.

(This photo is by Kiki Schneider.)


so I had an "Office Space" moment at work today. About a week ago, they sent around a mass email telling everybody to change their voicemail greetings. There's this long script which everybody has to follow, and which they (whoever "they" are) actually check it, and now we all had to change it again. They decided to change one of the phone numbers, so everybody in the agency has to change their outgoing voicemails. Which is certainly not stupid or a huge waste of time. (That is sarcasm.)

The script is long and took me about five times to get it right the first time. Here it is:
Hello, this is (------ Your Name ------), (------ Your Title ------) with the Office of the ( ----- name of the place where I work -----).

I’m not able to take your call right now, but if you’ll leave me a message, I will return your call within 24 hours or the next business day.

For immediate assistance, please call (202) _________ to reach our Project Coordinator.

Thanks for calling.

The "thanks for calling" part is on the second page of the Word document they sent out and I forgot to say it. No big deal, who cares, right? No, I got an email saying I have to fix it or we'll get in trouble.

That's got to be the stupidest thing I've ever heard. We'll get in trouble for me leaving off "thank you" on a two paragraph voicemail greeting? It's up there with the guy in "Office Space" whose job is to pass documents from one guy to another. I can't believe it's someone's job to do this. What a humongous waste of time (not to mention money, since I'm getting paid to change my voicemail greeting so many times and someone else is writing these greetings and then making us change them.)

How about "Hi, this is Andrew Wiseman, leave me a message" beep? Is that so wrong?


so I guess I spoke this without even knowing it: Appalachian English. I barely have an accent, but I use a lot of the vocabulary.

For example, "pen" and "pin" are the same sound to me, I say "greasy" like "greazy," "Appalachia" as "App-a-latch-ah," "chaw" for chewing tobacco, "Coke" for any kind of soda, "I reckon," etc. Some of my relatives say even more, like "warsh" for "wash," "polecat," "skillet," "fixin to" and so on. Some of my older relatives say "yonder" and "touched," and when I worked at Kroger (a grocery store) they used to call going out to get the shopping carts "buggy duty." Hooray for regional dialects.


so I got a new CD awhile ago and I finally got to listen to it. It's "I Can't Go On, I'll Go On" by The Broken West, a power pop band from Los Angeles. I actually bought the CD at their pretty ho-hum show June 1 at the Black Cat, but the CD is much better than my show experience.

For some reason, they were opening, even though I'd never heard of the other two bands, Nethers and The Comas, so I missed part of the set. I've since heard of Nethers and they're from DC, which I guess is why they were the headliners.

The main reason the show was lame is that the crowd was small, maybe 20-30 people who were all pretty far from the stage, and there were about 10 girls who seemed to know the band. Unfortunately these girls were going apeshit the entire show, dancing wildly to songs that really aren't be songs you dance wildly to, and yelling "WOOO!!! I LOVE YOU [insert band member's name here]!!!" after every song. It was pretty annoying. And The Comas were pretty blah, so we left and missed Nethers.

But anyway, show aside, The Broken West the band play power pop with more emphasis on the pop than the power. They're sometimes almost saccharine with their harmonies and instrumentation, like on "So It Goes," which sounds like The La's and Fountains of Wayne. The songs are generally sunny and uptempo, with the exception of "Hale Sunrise" a great track that's a little more relaxed and bass driven, and the last few tracks on the album which blend together a bit.

"On The Bubble" is a good album starter with a bit more a 1960s vibe, but "Down in the Valley" is my favorite, a very catchy little power pop ditty that sounds like an amped up cover of some old folk song. "Brass Ring" is another piano-led power pop number with lots of "ahh-ahhhh" harmonizing and "ooh ooh ooh"s that gets close to being too saccharine but doesn't quite make it. "You Can Build an Island" sounds like it could be a Teenage Fanclub cover.

If you like power pop with a fair dose of sugar, check them out. If not, they might give you a cavity.


Art on 14th Street NW

Photo Wall at 14th and T
Originally uploaded by Joe in DC
so it seems like 14th St NW in DC is becoming an art hub of sorts. I've stumbled onto a lot of art things there recently. On Saturday I went to the opening party for Artcade magazine, a new magazine by some Corcoran people. There were some artists showing things on the walls, free beer and there were some bands there, Deleted Scenes and a couple others, but it was packed and hot so we left.

Also, about a month or two ago there was a similar event in another new building on the other side of 14th, closer to P. I don't think it was for a magazine or anything though, just paintings and some videos and free beer. My friend who invited me didn't know if it was a recurring event or not.

And today I was walking down and noticed a guy taking pictures of a bamboo sculpture on top of Muleh. It was the artist, Piero Passacantando, and he said it was part of the WPA/Corcoran's SiteProjects DC, a project with a bunch of artists putting up works around the street. He said he was taking it down today because he was moving to California, and it'd been up about a week. I have also noticed two other things in that area that I learned were part of the same project, all the photos on the wall across the street (pictured), and an installation on S Street right off 14th called the Bureau of Misdirected Destiny. DCist wrote about Siteprojects too.

And there's been other art in the area too. The graffiti artist/painter Decoy has had a few things up at and around Sparky's, a coffee shop, and there's also the cool sidewalk at 13th and S.

I like what's happening on 14th, and I hope there continue to be more installations and shows in the buildings along there. It's pretty neat to be surprised by some art while walking around.


so in browsing Wikipedia, I discovered that a lot of people have too much time on their hands.

Then again, considering I somehow found and read these articles (by reading about the Scottish Highlands and then this article), I guess I do too.


So here's a new song I like. It's "Thou Shalt Always Kill" by Englishmen Dan le Sac vs Scroobius Pip. Scroobius Pip is the MC and angrily speaks an anti-mass culture screed over a hard, propulsive, bloopy beat by Dan le Sac. It's a bit of a hipster version of "Wear Sunscreen," but still a good track. The duo are from the town of Stanford-le-Hope, Essex and now based in London. I first heard it on a mix by DJ Never Forget. I'm not sure why I got the mix, but it was good.

I also like that you can't add the song to your Myspace page, kind of goes along with the song's general idea. The one reference I don't get is spelling "Phoenix" as "Pheonix."

Here's the official site (with lyrics)
And Wikipedia


so my friend sent this to me the other day, it's a new version of that game where you put the states on the map. It's got satellite imagery instead of just a blank map, but I have a bone to pick with it - it's got a really fucked up projection. By that I mean it distorts a lot of the states, making it a lot harder to place them.

For example, on the map Oregon (pictured above) is squished east to west, as are California and Washington. The map makes California look pretty small and weirdly curvy. Compare that to this map from the University of Texas, where all the states have their same shape and size. Oregon looks twice as long east-west as on the game.

It looks like on the game they're centered somewhere in the eastern part of the country, maybe over Kentucky or something. I can't even figure out what it is, it's so messed up. So the moral of the story - don't feel bad if you mess up this game.


so I was browsing around on Wikipedia and discovered this: it's Rivers Cuomo from Weezer's first band. He's in the back middle. Nice hair.

Apparently it was a "progressive metal" band called Avant Garde, complete with stupid 80s metal logo. Rivers went by Peter Kitts, which Wikipedia says was his dad's last name, and also sounds like Peter Criss from Kiss.


so this is awesome. I saw it on stereogum


Originally uploaded by squidpants
so I had a pretty interesting experience the other day. I got this email for something called the BritBus, it's a tour of English bands who ride around on a double decker bus, and apparently there was going to be free Bass (beer, not fish), so I was interested. I was covering it for DCist (a local DC news blog). It was the 6th week of an 8 week tour, and I hadn't heard of the bands, Jyrojets, The Crave, and Julia Jones (who also founded the tour) but whatever. So I went to the press event at the National Press Club building on 14th street (which was on the 13th floor). It seemed like I was the only "press" person there, and I use that term lightly. Everybody else seemed like post frat and sorority folks who just wanted free beer. And I can't blame them for that, but it was sort of odd.

They had a pretty good spread of English food, like these fried flat potato things, stilton and cheshire cheese, and so on, which was cool. The place was just your average meeting room with some stuff set up, and it was a weird venue for a concert - it was bright, for one thing, and there was carpet and all (see photo at left). The bands played acoustic, and unfortunately I got there late for Jyrojets, who I liked the most based on their myspace page - apparently "Favourite Thing about Jane" is going up the English charts, and they had a lot of positive press after SXSW. There was also a Scottish vicar who had a drawing for a tweed jacket.

We all got goodie bags, which were pretty sweet - a six pack of Bass, scones, jam (or maybe preserves, I dunno) and clotted cream, which is kind of like butter but creamier and tastier, and a few other things. The scones, jam and cream made a good breakfast the next day. The odd thing about the scones was that they were "sultana" scones, which I looked up, and apparently that's the name of that type of scones - strawberries and black pepper. I didn't notice the pepper, but they were tasty. I'd never liked scones before, they were too dry, but I guess I hadn't had the right kind.

So then the idea was that all of us press people (i.e. me and some of the randoms) would get on the bus with the bands, check it out, and ride to Fado, where the bands would play again for anybody who happened to be there. This would be about a 7 block bus ride.

We got on the bus, which was pretty nice. I talked to some of the guys from The Crave, who were friendly, cool guys, and they seemed to like the bus. There wasn't any air conditioning, which the guys from Jyrojets bemoaned in the brief time I talked to them. The bus had some nice benches and stuff on it and tons of flat screen TVs all playing the various bands' music, which must get old for them. Tom, the bassist from The Crave, said the bus was comfortable to sleep on, but they also had Range Rovers for when it took too long - apparently the bus took 4 days to get from Denver to St. Louis.

So it was me, the vicar, a girl from Where magazine and a couple of her friends, and the bands, and away we went. The bus was very bouncy on the ride, and it felt kind of odd to be riding in an obvious doubledecker bus in downtown D.C. We talked some more and then got to Fado. It was The Crave's first U.S. tour and I talked a bit with their drummer Dave about D.C., which was smaller than he expected.

It seemed like most customers at the bar didn't expect a concert, but they got more into it as the show went on. This one was all acoustic too. People seemed to really enjoy Jyrojets' set and were crowding around, and I heard some people asking the various sponsors and tour staff people about them. I ran into a girl I knew with her friend and they told me they came just to see Jyrojets, so that was cool - before I was basically talking to the girl from Where and her pals and being a little bored.

The press lady bought me a beer, which I guess is technically bad ethics for press type folks, but oh well. She also made the point that the bands look like they were straight out of central casting, which was true - it was very easy to pick out band members from non-band members.

I talked with the vicar a bit, who was a really cool guy. He was there as a representative from a Scotland tourism promotion type place, and said he and the bands would go out and drink after the sets and stuff. He was based in Edinburgh and was happy when I told him a lot of my family is Scottish, and he thought Andrew was a good Scottish name, which I guess I never realized before. He gave me a couple books about Scottish geneaology.

He also told me that they stopped at a Fado in almost every city, which was pretty funny - these English bands coming over to the U.S. (and for The Crave, their first U.S. tour) only to play in a chain of fake Irish bars. Luckily they were going to Madam's Organ two days later, so they might get a better idea.

So the show ended and I hung out a bit with the girl I knew and her pal, then took my goodies and went home. Pretty random and fun night. I wrote a less detailed version for DCist too.


so yesterday I saw this movie "Dead Alive." It was amazing. It's ridiculous, hilarious, clever, and extremely gory. I recommend it highly. The movie (which is called "Braindead" in New Zealand, hence the IMDB page) was one of Peter Jackson's early movies and doesn't involve hobbits or rings. Instead it's about zombies and monsters and stuff. My roommate and I were dying the whole time with laughter, it's amazing. The other roommate came downstairs to see what we were hollering about. I don't want to ruin any of the good parts, so I won't say more about it.


so this is the best sports name ever: Boof Bonser. Awesome.


So my roommates and I went to Annapolis, Maryland this Memorial Day.


so I was goofing around on Wikipedia reading about French government. I noticed that Prime Minister Nicholas Sarkozy is from the UMP party, which in English translates to "Union for a Popular Movement." What a stupid name for a political party. How generic can you get? It's a union that is in favor of a popular movement. Uh, a popular movement to do what? Why not just name it "Party that is Political" or "Party Whose Goal is to Win Elections"? Honestly.


so this weird thing happens at work. This lady in the row of cubes behind me will be on a conference call on speakerphone, and another lady about 20 feet to my right will be on it too. When she talks, I can hear her talking, and I can hear her echoing on the speakerphone in the row behind me. It's really weird sounding and kind of disorienting. And sometimes other people are on it, so I hear her voice echoing from all over. I like it when their conference calls are over.


so I enjoy reading magazines and such. For a long time I've thought the titles "contributing editor" and "guest editor" were strange. A guest editor sounds like somebody who walks in, corrects a few typos, then walks out. Bye! And a contributing editor does the same thing, or contrbutes a few changes. "Hi guys, change this word to this. Talk to you next week."

Obviously a guest editor is really just an editor for an issue or two, and does more thematic stuff rather than fixing typos, but that's what it sounds like to me. And after pondering the "contributing editor" term, I realized that the person contributes articles. And according to Wikipedia, they don't actually edit. So why not call them "contributing writer"? Then again, that's kind of redundant. How about "writer"? Or "correspondent," but that to me sounds like somebody who writes letters to the magazine. Oh well.