Trent Reznor's classic Hurt as performed by a rather sad Kermit The Frog. It's possible that you might prefer the Nine Inch Nails version or even the Johnny Cash cover. But after too much pain, don't be surprised if your brain hurts.
Political X-Wipes offers you the opportunity to flush away your frustration with the current administration. A fitting symbolic statement, although less satisfying than actually flushing away the real asswipes.
Tasting Rachel Ray is a video project by Naomi Leibowitz which contains numerous clips of Rachel going "mmmm" over and over. However, the soundtrack could easily be mistaken for phonesex, but maybe that's just me.
I've always been a bit ambivalent about her, one moment I'll find her entertaining and sexy, then other times I just find her incredibly annoying. But there are those who aren't quite as uncertain how they feel about her, as the Rachael Ray Sucks Community demonstrates. How cool is THAT?
Please Impeach Me (VIA Left In Aboite) is the kind of song that gets stuck in your head. But in a good way, as opposed to the rather disturbing MC Rove video, proving that these guys truly have no shame.
Maybe it's the voyeur in me, or maybe it's just because I'm jealous of those who can open up and be emotionally honest, but the site PostSecret continues to fascinate me. Although numerous imitators have come along, it remains the best place for this type of confessional. Submitters send in their postcards with their secret, along with an artistic expression of the same, and it becomes a compelling read. Running across this video of the site from All American Rejects caused me to peruse a few more "secret" links:
Instant Karma: The Campaign to Save Darfur is an album to be released in June, with the proceeds to benefit the Amnesty International campaign to help end the violence in Darfur. The album will feature 20 John Lennon tracks covered by various other artists. The first track, "#9 Dream" as covered by R.E.M. is out now, and available at the iTunes store.
If you've discovered the theme option to the personalized Google homepage, you may not have noticed the hidden Easter Egg (VIA del.icio.us). The bad news is you have to stay up until 3:14 AM to witness the fun.
The funny thing is that both shows evoke a sense of "home" when I see the credits. Homicide features a montage that includes glimpses of row houses typical of those found in my old neck of the woods. I could be wrong, but it seems that they've got more "permastone" covered houses per capita than anywhere else in the country. With Homicide being shot on location, they occasionally used some local talent, featuring a taste of the regional accent. And in Tony's driving sequence it features many of the memorable, but less than scenic local sights that are found in this neck of the woods. How sad is it that the last time I was traveling for work, watching The Sopranos in the middle of nowhere, this sequence made me homesick?
With the final few Sopranos episodes right around the corner, it should be interesting to see if the opening credits are fine tuned even more. After 9-11, the WTC towers were edited out to reflect the new reality. His radio has always been tuned to "102.7" which used to be a rock & roll station, which he probably would have listened to. But the station has had a few format changes, causing them to quickly pan past the radio frequency. Now that it is a "lite-fm" clone, I wonder if they'll just cut this out entirely.
But I'm more than a little bit disappointed to see that with all the "old school" classics that made the list, the opening to Hawaii Five-O seems to be missing. Seems like this might be reason enough for a round of The Hawaii 50 Drinking Game. Book 'em Dan-o.
Every so often you'll see a vanity license plate and you have to wonder just how did they sneak that one by. Yesterday, I saw a car with the plate "KUNTAP" which made me wonder if this was one of those times, or just me wallowing in the gutter once again.
Been too busy and unmotivated to update and add a new post recently. No loss there, but I was surfing recently and saw another site that linked to just about everything I had done recently. That's hardly a surprise, since we are sometimes fishing in a shallow pool, but what did surprise me is that I felt the need to check my date stamp to make sure I did them first. Shoot me now if I'm starting to take this that seriously.
Which is stranger: that the continuing revelations about the Bushies transgressions evokes a sense of déjà vu about Watergate, or that it took this long us to notice?
Sad to see the passing of Larry Bud Melman, or Calvert DeForest as he was named in real life. Although the comic foil for Dave's wisecracks, his sincerity and niceness always came though.
“The planet has a fever. If your baby has a fever, you go to the doctor. If the doctor says you need to intervene here, you don’t say, well I read a science fiction novel that tells me it’s not a problem. If the crib’s on fire, you don’t speculate that the baby is flame-retardant. You take action. The planet has a fever.” Al Gore
Search With Kevin, a new search engine from K-Fed, gives you the opportunity to find what you seek as well as a chance of winning a prize from Kevin Federline every time you search the web. Wow, I could win a tickets to his private Birthday party (travel not included)? Pinch me, I feel light-headed. I'd hate to miss this bash, where you could get a free buzz cut in a bizarre show of support for his hefty-ex. But if you're less adventurous you can just enhance your browser and get a "Kevin plug-in". Britney always spoke so highly about that.
The seller claims that in Albert Einstein's last will and testament he requested a plush version of himself be made that we all could hug and love. Maybe not, but he's also rumored to have had a deathbed wish to be reincarnated as a plumber. I'm not buying either.
But I'd be far more likely to order Al's likeness than these truly scary political action figures, including Hillary, Obama, and Jim McGreevey just to name a few. A silly idea, since very few politicians are actually responsible for any real "action".
Also from this comic genius is "Dammit I'm Mad", which not only is a poem but a palindrome as well!
Dammit I'm mad. Evil is a deed as I live. God, am I reviled? I rise, my bed on a sun, I melt. To be not one man emanating is sad. I piss. Alas, it is so late. Who stops to help? Man, it is hot. I'm in it. I tell. I am not a devil. I level "Mad Dog". Ah, say burning is, as a deified gulp, In my halo of a mired rum tin. I erase many men. Oh, to be man, a sin. Is evil in a clam? In a trap? No. It is open. On it I was stuck. Rats peed on hope. Elsewhere dips a web. Be still if I fill its ebb. Ew, a spider… eh? We sleep. Oh no! Deep, stark cuts saw it in one position. Part animal, can I live? Sin is a name. Both, one… my names are in it. Murder? I'm a fool. A hymn I plug, deified as a sign in ruby ash, A Goddam level I lived at. On mail let it in. I'm it. Oh, sit in ample hot spots. Oh wet! A loss it is alas (sip). I'd assign it a name. Name not one bottle minus an ode by me: "Sir, I deliver. I'm a dog" Evil is a deed as I live. Dammit I'm mad.
I've usually found myself second guessing almost every life-altering decision I've ever made, except one. Sometimes things fit like a glove, and other times no matter how hard you try, it doesn't feel like it was meant to be. That's the way I felt about the town where I grew up. So at a point after a series of jobs and relationships that all ended badly, I decided to try fishing off a different pier.
Where I was living was a nice enough place, but it bore more than a passing resemblance to the fictional town of Bedford Falls. Unfortunately, I craved Pottersville. (Maybe I'm crazy, but as much as I love the movie "It's A Wonderful Life" I never really understood why George got so upset when visiting Pottersville, since it seemed like a much more fun, vibrant place than the sleepy hamlet that he knew and loved, but that's just me).
As tough as it was to leave behind friends and family, it was the right thing to do considering the alternatives that were available. Whenever I return there, I find myself unable to imagine the path not taken; nor do I want to. Sometimes things just work out for the best, and I have to assume that this is one of those situations.
I just returned from a road trip to help Mom out with some stuff, so not much time to blog, except to dash off this quick ramble. A few more thoughts and events from the road:
The wife doesn't see why I had to use the GPS to go somewhere that I know my way around. But with some of the local trips, it came in handy, since I kept finding developments in places where there used to be just cows roaming about. Mom still feels the need to tell me where to turn, despite the other voice with the same message.
I've mentioned before just how much I hate the PA Turnpike, and this trip didn't give me any reason to change my mind. After spending years adding lanes and causing construction delays, they finally realized that they needed to replace the narrow bridges designed for fewer lanes that they just squeezed the expanded road through. Expect more delays.
Am I the only one who doesn't get those "Speed Enforced By Aircraft" signs? If they said "speed monitored" I'd have no problem, but the "enforcement" word makes it sound like I should expect planes to swoop down from the sky, guns ablaze if I'm going too fast.
Why don't ALL new cars have an iPod interface? Sure, if I wanted to upgrade to the top of the line radio, and then add on an adaptor kit option I could have had one, but I cheaped out. So I have to deal with all the interference and the "mush-mouthed" quality of those FM transmitters, which isn't the best solution.
Memo to self; delete Beatles song from driving playlist. The lyrics "You never give me your money, you only give me your funny paper. And in the middle of negotiation you break down" now seems like a reference to Heather Mills.
I passed a less effective than hoped for billboard that started off by stating "HEY! EYES BACK ON THE ROAD!" OK, screw you and your reverse psychology, sometimes I CAN do as I am told!
On one of my frequent pit stops for a potty break, I went into the mens room and headed for the wall of urinals. Now I'm not the kind of guy who violates the rules of rest room etiquette, but I couldn't help noticing that there was a guy who was standing there who appeared to be more "blessed" than most. It reminded me of the old "the water is cold" joke. I was thinking that he was proud of his assets and showing off, when the realization hit me that I was seeing the profile of his belt hanging off his pants, and NOT what I had originally thought I saw. Good; one less reason to feel inadequate.
From the recent Rolling Stone essay reviewing the findings of a panel of experts discussing Leaving Iraq, The Grim Truth:
The war in Iraq isn't over yet, but -- surge or no surge -- the United States has already lost. That's the grim consensus of a panel of experts assembled by Rolling Stone to assess the future of Iraq. "Even if we had a million men to go in, it's too late now," says retired four-star Gen. Tony McPeak, who served on the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the Gulf War. "Humpty Dumpty can't be put back together again."
Those on the panel -- including diplomats, counterterror analysts and a former top military commander -- agree that President Bush's attempt to secure Baghdad will only succeed in dragging out the conflict, creating something far beyond any Vietnam-style "quagmire." The surge won't bring an end to the sectarian cleansing that has ravaged Iraq, as the newly empowered Shiite majority seeks to settle scores built up during centuries of oppressive rule by the Sunni minority. It will do nothing to defuse the powder keg that an independence-minded Kurdistan, in Iraq's northern provinces, poses to the governments of Turkey, Syria and Iran, which have long brutalized their own Kurdish separatists. And it will only worsen the global war on terror...
"Advertising may be described as the science of arresting human intelligence long enough to get money from it."Stephen Butler Leacock
I'm pretty sure that the product being advertised DOESN'T have the advertised side effect, but I'd be tempted to try it...just in case!
Since the ads that work best usually work at the emotional level, there are few emotions more powerful than lust, which probably explains the prevalence of sex in advertising. A few links providing collaborating evidence:
I guess you've got to do something COMPLETELY outrageous to capture people's attention and get them REALLY pissed-off. First, we outsource the military, despite the fact that the government can in many cases execute properly and with more efficiency than private contractors (healthcare as provided by the VA hospitals being one example).
Then we award massive no-bid contracts to a company that has close ties to the traitorous cabal that has lied and manipulated us into an unnecessary war. No appearance of impropriety there, right?
And despite this incestuous relationship and a history of improperly billing for services rendered, still not that many people cared and it was "business as usual" for the military/industrial complex. No, it's only with the recent announcement that Halliburton would be moving to Dubai so they wouldn't have to pay taxes on their profiteering blood money that widespread outrage is finally being expressed. Apparently, we can put up with a certain degree of corruption, but if you step over a line, well then there's hell-to-pay. Too bad we stepped over that line along time ago, but at least people are paying attention now.
This carpet-bagging move has drawn criticism from Congress, and Waxman may hold hearings to look into the implications of the move. But I've got a three step program that would resolve this quickly and easily: 1) Let them pull up stakes, but let's reclassify them as a foreign company. 2) Revoke current and future contracts with Halliburton. 3) Make sure they take Darth Cheney & Friends along with them. Sure, it wouldn't solve the problem, but it's got to be a step in the right direction.
With recent postings containing mentions of Jethro Tull, Tommy Lee, & Eddie Van Halen it reminds me that it's been way too long since I did a spin of the 'ol party shuffle. Why wait 'till Friday for a look at another Random 10?
Looks like you'll have to wait for the Van Halen reunion tour just a little longer. Joining the list of celebs who have signed up for the "Rehab Tour" Eddie Van Halen looks like he'll be out of action for a bit. I much preferred the Eddie who looked like a "separated at birth" version of ex-wife Valerie Bertineli than the current version who looks like he could pose for the cover of a Jethro Tull album.
When did standing at a busy intersection with a plastic bucket become synonymous with "fund raising"? Not to sound stuffy or judgmental, but it feels too much like simple "begging". I can get over my dislike of the technique when it's a good cause like firefighters' organizations, but the numerous other poorly identified groups remind me of the "squeegee guys" who you used to have to fend off at intersections. But at least then, you'd have a clean windshield.
"March Madness...ARE YOU READY?" Umm...no I'm not. I wonder if that's an acceptable excuse to call out from work?
The "mobile dog groomer" is coming over this morning to enable us to see our dog's eyes again. She pulls her truck into the driveway, and in an hour we've got a neat and clean pooch once more. I'm just disappointed that a similar service isn't offered for humans, I would SO pay a premium for THAT convenience.
I know all the "cool kids" are doing it, but I refuse to try Twitter. It's described as a "global community of friends and strangers answering one simple question: What are you doing?" Here is the simple, low-tech answer: NOTHING! See; isn't that easier?
Memo to self: next time, be sure you change ALL the clocks when a time change takes place. Or at least make sure that your alarm clock gets changed.
Although best known for his surrealist paintings, Salvador Dalí apparently had a brief, unsuccessful foray into farming. No not really. Just one of the many fantastic commercial art images from mid-century food and beverage ads to be found at Plan59. A great site if you enjoy perusing through some vintage retro graphics.
And it's given me some great insight into the fashion sense of the one bathroom that I've got that we haven't remodeled yet. It looks like ceruleanblue was at one time "fresh as a dawn sky", although now, not so much. At least we got rid of the 70's psychedelic plaid wallpaper that covered every non-ceramic surface when we first moved in.
Most blogs try to end the week with something positive, or at least something "warm & fuzzy" like "pet blogging". Not here, not today. Welcome to "offensive Friday". At least these erotic cakes from Masturbakers qualify as something sweet.
But my biggest WTF moment came when I saw that this "Tommy Lee" cake is categorized as "small"? Apparently it's because he only feeds 12, as opposed to the "John Holmes", which can feed 25! And be sure to plan ahead (no pun intended), since all cakes take three days advance notice. If your cake lasts longer than four hours, please seek immediate medical attention.
If you seek other enhancements of the non-edible kind, these Do-It-Yourself Crotch Bulges may help you make that all important first impression. Or you could "share the wealth" and Clone-A-Willy for a friend or loved one.
And if you haven't visited with The Pants Whisperer set aside time for a consultation. I'll ignore my normal distaste for viral marketing, thanks to some funny stuff like the penis name generator, and dickorations to be found there.
"I very excite" that the Borat movie arrived in yesterdays' mail. As usual, I opted to wait for the DVD release instead of seeing it in a theater. It's not that I've completely ruled out going to the movies, but whenever I do I usually wind up sitting near someone who decides to act like an "anoos". "Is-a very nice" to be able to watch it from the comfort of my own home like a "king in the castle".
With the ever shorter time frame between the theater run and the DVD release it's not that big of a sacrifice. Besides, the DVD will usually contain all those cool extras, like the trailer for Sexydrownwatch. I have never been so happy to see those "black boxes" superimposed over genitals as I was in this flick, which spared us from really seeing Borat Naked, one of many laugh out loud sequences. A few more of the deleted bits as well as some other "very niiice" stuff:
"The very existence of flame-throwers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done." George Carlin
Free is good, but when you can combine that with a meaningful and necessary message, that is even better. MoveOn.org is offering up these Free Bumper Stickers: End This War which have a simple and powerful message. The madness of "endless war" as we continue our involvement in the quagmire in Iraq, while at the same time setting our sights on Iran MUST STOP NOW!
Everybody approaches things differently, as this fellow with a distinctly different Bowling Style demonstrates.
Since we're on the subject of bowling, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the inspiring story of Esther Medley who is 94 years old, legally blind, and bowled an impressive score of 244 in a recent outing. Needless to say I'm younger and can see better, but this woman could still beat the pants off me!
And all these topics (bowling + different strokes + pants-less) makes it a logical progression to the ever so NSFW site featuring Bowling Porn! Who knew? (Insert cheap balls joke HERE).
I got in a fight one time with a really big guy, and he said, "I'm going to mop the floor with your face." I said, "You'll be sorry." He said, "Oh, yeah? Why?" I said, "Well, you won't be able to get into the corners very well." Emo Philips
The moment I've long feared has finally arrived. I believe I may be channeling the soul of a Republican, since I'm really enjoying playing this silly on-line game Bum's Rush. The object of the game is to make a bum run into traffic and pick up loose change, which is exceedingly cruel, but oh so much fun. Then again, I've been known to be amused by watching paint dry.
In today's Dilbert, Wally shows us some helpful time management skills. As usual, this is funny only because it is so true. A typical day has me setting my goals and agenda, only to see any chance of achieving those objectives become laughably unrealistic due to others demands on my time. Maybe someday I'll be the master of my own domain, but perhaps I need to remember the old saying that goes "the first myth of management is that it exists".
And even though I've experienced just about every bizarre situation that can occur while interviewing job candidates I had one today that was brand new. Although I had been keeping the applicant waiting, I finally could call him into the office to start the interview. It was at that point that his cell phone rings, and he sits back down and takes the call! Just the kind of behavior that any employer would like to see; surprisingly I passed on the candidate. Choose those priorities carefully.
Although these globes are the only piece of subway art I can really recall seeing (because there's nothing ELSE to look at when you're on the escalator), this Subway Art Guide offers up a virtual tour of the public art found in the NYC public transit system. Unfortunately, most people probably rush right past most of them.
If you're not already a big fan of the TV series Heroes, this Heroes Character Map showing the relationship of the characters is one way to get up to speed. The Heroes Wiki is another one. And it looks like you'll have plenty of time to play catch-up, since last nights' cliffhanger is the last one until sometime in April.
Last night's episode was a satisfying one that moved the story along in ways that I hadn't expected. It wound up featuring just about all the characters except Mr. Muggles, who I missed seeing. Once again, my prognostication skills pretty much sucked, since I had predicted that the "Linderman reveal" would prove to be Donald Sutherland. But just like the previews that share "too much information", the opening credits listing Malcolm McDowell ruined yet another surprise in a show that was chocked full of them.
With no time or inclination to do a real blog entry, a repost of today's Paul Krugman Op-Ed piece Valor and Squalor which addresses the shameful crisis at Walter Reed will have to suffice:
When Salon, the online magazine, reported on mistreatment of veterans at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center two years ago, officials simply denied that there were any problems. And they initially tried to brush off last month’s exposé in The Washington Post.
But this time, with President Bush’s approval at 29 percent, Democrats in control of Congress, and Donald Rumsfeld no longer defense secretary — Robert Gates, his successor, appears genuinely distressed at the situation — the whitewash didn’t stick.
Yet even now it’s not clear whether the public will be told the full story, which is that the horrors of Walter Reed’s outpatient unit are no aberration. For all its cries of “support the troops,” the Bush administration has treated veterans’ medical care the same way it treats everything else: nickel-and-diming the needy, protecting the incompetent and privatizing everything it can.
What makes this a particular shame is that in the Clinton years, veterans’ health care — like the Federal Emergency Management Agency — became a shining example of how good leadership can revitalize a troubled government program. By the early years of this decade the Veterans Health Administration was, by many measures, providing the highest-quality health care in America. (It probably still is: Walter Reed is a military facility, not run by the V.H.A.)
But as with FEMA, the Bush administration has done all it can to undermine that achievement. And the Walter Reed scandal is another Hurricane Katrina: the moment when the administration’s misgovernment became obvious to everyone.
The problem starts with money. The administration uses carefully cooked numbers to pretend that it has been generous to veterans, but the historical data contained in its own budget for fiscal 2008 tell the true story. The quagmire in Iraq has vastly increased the demands on the Veterans Administration, yet since 2001 federal outlays for veterans’ medical care have actually lagged behind overall national health spending.
To save money, the administration has been charging veterans for many formerly free services. For example, in 2005 Salon reported that some Walter Reed patients were forced to pay hundreds of dollars each month for their meals.
More important, the administration has broken longstanding promises of lifetime health care to those who defend our nation. Two months before the invasion of Iraq the V.H.A., which previously offered care to all veterans, introduced severe new restrictions on who is entitled to enroll in its health care system. As the agency’s Web site helpfully explains, veterans whose income exceeds as little as $27,790 a year, and who lack “special eligibilities such as a compensable service connected condition or recent combat service,” will be turned away.
So when you hear stories of veterans who spend months or years fighting to get the care they deserve, trying to prove that their injuries are service-related, remember this: all this red tape was created not by the inherent inefficiency of government bureaucracy, but by the Bush administration’s penny-pinching.
But money is only part of the problem.
We know from Hurricane Katrina postmortems that one of the factors degrading FEMA’s effectiveness was the Bush administration’s relentless push to outsource and privatize disaster management, which demoralized government employees and drove away many of the agency’s most experienced professionals. It appears that the same thing has been happening to veterans’ care.
The redoubtable Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, points out that IAP Worldwide Services, a company run by two former Halliburton executives, received a large contract to run Walter Reed under suspicious circumstances: the Army reversed the results of an audit concluding that government employees could do the job more cheaply.
And Mr. Waxman, who will be holding a hearing on the issue today, appears to have solid evidence, including an internal Walter Reed memo from last year, that the prospect of privatization led to a FEMA-type exodus of skilled personnel.
What comes next? Francis J. Harvey, who as far as I can tell was the first defense contractor appointed secretary of the Army, has been forced out. But the parallels between what happened at Walter Reed and what happened to New Orleans — not to mention parallels with the mother of all scandals, the failed reconstruction of Iraq — tell us that the roots of the scandal run far deeper than the actions of a few bad men.
And another worthwhile op-ed from the linkharvest would be yesterday's NY Times piece containing The Must-Do List for the Democratic Congress if they are going to reverse the damage to liberty done by the Bush Administration.
Since blogging is largely like masturbation except without the mess, this next link makes the perfect fodder for a blog entry. Although it would make a great Halloween post, these instructions on how to make your own fun sized Candy Corn Dildo might be something you want to try out now, so that when the holiday rolls around you can whip up a batch with ease.
This could be the image changing sort of thing that candy corn needs. Lewis Black reminds us why we all hate it:
Candy corn is the only candy in the history of America that's never been advertised. And there's a reason. All of the candy corn that was ever made was made in 1911. And so, since nobody eats that stuff, every year there's a ton of it left over. And the candy corn company sends the guys out into the villages, to collect out of the dumpsters all the candy corn we've thrown away. They wash it! They wash it! I'll never forget the first time my mother gave me candy corn. She said, 'Here Lewis! This is corn that tastes like candy!' (takes it, eats it) ... 'This tastes like crap!' And every year since then, Halloween is returned and I, like an Alzheimer's patient, find myself in a room, and the room has a table in it, and on the table, is a bowl of candy corn. And I look at it, as if I've never seen it before. 'Candy corn,' I think. 'Corn that tastes like candy. I can't wait.' (takes it, takes a bite) 'SON OF A BITCH!'
Ok, NOW I really want to see this movie! Much like the short version of Pulp Fiction that I linked to the other day, this NSFW edit of The Departed (VIA MetaFilter) pares it down to its' f'ing essence.