Friday, July 31, 2009

Unfunny People

You know, I think I might make a conscious effort to NEVER see the new Adam Sandler/Seth Rogen movie, Funny People.

No in the theaters, not on DVD, not on TV. Not ever.

A Black Dude's View on Obama

A guy on the bus was ranting about Obama today: "A beer summit at the White House? Sheeit. Obama don't need to be doing no beer summit. Where's my beer? Get me a job, motherfucker. I'm gonna give him till 2010 and if he doesn't do nothing for me, I'm gonna vote to put another white motherfucker in there."

He was drunk and loud. It was 12:30 in the afternoon.

At least Obama waited until the end of the workday to have his beer summit. This dude's beer summit started at breakfast and ended up on the bus, slurring to all the passengers.

I think that's why he doesn't have a job. But maybe Obama could help him with that. Doubt it. Some problems are beyond even the noblest of efforts.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Quote of the Day

Comes from Henry Louis Gates (via the NY Times):
When he's not arresting you, Sergeant Crowley is a really likable guy.
Ha! I'm sure that's true.

Of a lot of people. Jeffrey Dahmer always seemed like a nice guy too...when he wasn't killing gay men and eating their brains.

Anyway, I'm glad that these guys are all bigger men than me. I think if it were me, I'd be comfortable brewing in my anger, definitely not sucking down brews with the dude who pissed me off.

Secondary quote of the day:
Professor Gates said in an interview, “I don’t think anybody but Barack Obama would have thought about bringing us together.”
That, I'm sure, is also true.

Playing For a Living

Via Boing Boing, I saw this:
By solving challenging problems on the FunSAT board, players can contribute to the design of complex computer systems, but you don't have to be a computer scientist to play. The game is a sort of puzzle that might appeal to Sudoku fans.
It brought to mind this post I wrote a few years ago where I explored the idea of making useful games, games not just designed to entertain the player, but to accomplish some actual work.

The idea was pooh-poohed like this:
I feel pretty safe in saying that no company would foot the expense (and it would be significant) to make a user interface a "game" on the gamble that it might make their worker bees more productive.

My response at the time:
You're right, corporate America doesn't have the balls to design something like that. Some kid fresh out of MIT is going to do it. And then she'll make a fortune.
I was wrong.

It wasn't MIT. It was the University of Michigan.


You want to read something funny, check this out.

Long story short: Pajamas Media is birther central. A guy who doesn't like Obama, but has nevertheless accepted his natural born Americanness, posts a satire that makes the birthers look completely retarded.

In the comments, the birthers

A sample:

4. Steve:

Very funny Frank – NOT!

Tell him to produce his birth certificate. He has not done so. He is spending a fortune to not do so. He has led any reasonable to conclude that he is concealing something. That excludes you Frank.
Steve obviously hasn't seen this...

This one's funny, too:
5. bob:

Congratulations on the lamest article I’ve ever read at Pajamas Media.
Bob's a newbie. He said the same thing after he read his second article at Pajamas Media. Then after article #3, he said, "No, this is the lamest article I've ever read at Pajamas Media." Sorry, Bob, they're all lame.

Look at this one:
9. "progressive"watch:

Cute and condecending and boring after three paragraphs. It is an extremely feeble attempt at satire. The basic idea is that Fleming and those who think like him are so smart and those other people are even too dumb to know they are wackos. It is more of the same old everyday elistist attitude.

That's not how you spell elitist, dummy.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Speaking of Clutch

In another song from Strange Cousins From the West called Witchdoctor, I love how Neil Fallon sings the line:
The mark, the beast, Armageddon in the Middle East.
Also, in the song Let a Poor Man Be, I like how he sings:
Womaaaaan, let a poor man be. Let a poor man be.
This followed by a greasy acrobatic lick.

I'd hook you up with samples, but I don't have the time. Just buy the record.

Speaking Of Founders...

Abraham Lincoln is not technically a Founding Father -just the nation's most revered president- but there is a song about him on Clutch's new record, Strange Cousins From the West. (Buy it, listen to it, love it.)

It's a blues-march, almost a dirge, with a circular bass line and militaristic drum fills that wouldn't be out of place on a parade ground. And, of course, Neil Fallon's lyrics provide the color. Here they evoke the assassination and the subsequent mourning:
Oh, Abraham Lincoln, carried across Ninth Street.
Oh, Abraham Lincoln, carried across that Street.
The assassin, the coward, shot him in the head.
The assassin, the serpent, struck him then he fled.

Oh, many, many, many, people gather to hear the word.
Oh, many, many, many, people tremble at what they’ve heard.
Snickering drunkards from cover of dark.
Treachery’s their master. Murder is their art.

And here, they evoke Abraham Lincoln the monument.
From the temple grips his chair.
Watch the people climb the stairs.
Watch the leaves grow then fall
Blow across the empty mall.
A rock song...about the Lincoln Monument.

Lessons in Hackery

I saw this headline on this article at Pajamas Media and chortled*.
What Would the Founders Think of ObamaCare?
No surprise then, that the author concluded the founders wouldn't like it.

After all, when your premise is "What would the founders think of X?" and X is something they never even conceived, you have a lot of leeway.

What would the founders think

Packet-switching networks?

Vulcanized rubber?

Fighter jets?

You think George Washington gets the willies when he thinks of ObamaCare? Wait till you see what happens when we show him an X-ray.

It's one thing to argue that the founding fathers were men of vision uniquely suited to their time. It's another to argue their vision is suitable for all time.

* Did you know the word "chortle," which I always thought was a legitimate word, was made-up by Lewis Carroll in his Jabberwocky poem? Now you do.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Poor Drunken Me

I got drunk on Sunday.

This wouldn't be worthy of note were it not for the rarity of the occurrence. But it's true, I drank and I got drunk.

(Actually, I think the technical term is hammered.)

At the end of the night, I found myself on Colfax, stumbling to the bus stop and smoking a cigarette. I swallowed a drag instead of inhaling it and the smoke curdled in my stomach. The "I'm gonna puke" sign lit up in my head and, like always, it was a self-fulfilling prophecy. A few steps later I hoarked up the last two drinks of the night. The first blast was quick, painless even. I felt better almost instantly.

The second blast, though, would not be so merciful. It shot out of my nostrils, blaring horns of pain as it went. My eyes welled up and I made sickening noises I can't even put in onomatopoeia form. It got all over my face, my hands, sticky tendrils of booze puke and snot, and just as I was trying to wipe it off, the bus pulled up.

Being hammered made me shameless and I got on anyway. I wasn't the only drunk and I certainly didn't smell the worst. And there was a box of paper towels sitting right there by the door.

Ah, good times.