Saturday, July 31, 2004

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Language: Latin

Who says Latin is a dead language? Why not bring it back as a trans-European language ?

Movies: "-ing" Titles

Eric adds another "-ing"/Name movie title: "Raising Arizona".

Celebrities: Stephen Bing

Interesting story on ABC News about Stephen Bing. It's bad enough that he shagged Liz Hurley. Then he behaved like a cad when he got her preggers. He has given $16 million of his own money to Democratic Party candidates - fair enough, I suppose. Now it turns out that his "business partner" is a former Mob hitman. The article says Bing "declined to answer questions". I saw this on TV yesterday and Bing actually just stood staring blank-faced when confronted by the reporter - not even a "No comment". Creepy.

Here are his credits on IMDB, including "Kangaroo Jack" and "Married..With Children".

Cryptogram: Fashion

The always popular Cryptogram:





Advertising: Sara Lee

OK, Sara Lee introduced their slogan in 1968 so this is a wee bit late to complain, but really: "Nobody doesn't like Sara Lee" ? I suppose Little Debbie was already using "It doesn't make anybody puke their ring up."
But here's a surprising result from a British ad agency where an even worse slogan, "Nobody needs Sara Lee", tested better than a positive slogan.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Politics: "Deep Throat"

Is "Deep Throat" dead ?

Movies: "-ing" Titles

There's a coming attraction called "Being Julia". Please, no more films with a title formed by a verb ending in "-ing" and a person's name. We've already had "Being John Malkovich", "Eating Raoul", "Driving Miss Daisy", "Saving Private Ryan", "Saving Silverman", "Serving Sara", "Teaching Mrs. Tingle" (originally "Killing Mrs. Tingle"), "Killing Zoe", "Drowning Mona", "Finding Forrester", "Finding Nemo", "Chasing Amy" and "Chasing Papi".

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Peeves: Politicians Pointing & Waving

Annoying tradition at Political Conventions: when the candidate and his wife (or VP), in the midst of a standing ovation, pretend to point out somebody in the crowd and wave at this phantom person.
The first candidate I saw doing this was Bill Clinton, but here's a photo of George Bush pointing someone out to the late lamented Ronald Reagan.
Bob Dole would have pointed if it wasn't for his gimpy hand.
Here, Ted Kennedy tells his niece that Balwant Singh is in the house.
Laura Bush demonstrates the move flawlessly.
The Bush Twins spot a beer vendor who isn't checking IDs.

If you would like to have your own balloon and confetti celebration with your spouse, while waving and pointing at your neighbours, order here.
(By the way, here's the best 404 File Not Found page I've ever seen.)

Celebrities: Charlize Theron

Dodging a bullet: Charlize Theron auditioned for "Showgirls".

Monday, July 26, 2004

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Movies: MGM Lion

Did you know that the original MGM lion lived at Dublin Zoo ?

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Cryptic Crossword: No Grid

Cryptic crossword clues:

  1. Entrance chamber, very badly-built in this direction. (9)
  2. No room at the poker table ? (4, 5)
  3. These men remain partially fluid. (5)
  4. In school band, I am on drums. Rock! (7)
  5. Gents leery on mixture - it's people! (7,5)

Bonus clue from Eric: Daniel wrecked SUV. (6)

Here's a guide to solving this kind of clue.

Brand & Band Names Combined

Final Brand/Band name from Robert L:

Derek And The Domino's Pizza

This contest is now closed.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Brand & Band Names Combined

Proudly announcing the birth of my Sextuplet:

S Club 7 Up With PeopleSoft Cell C

Breaking that down:

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Baseball: Dominican Republic

I've wondered lately why the Dominican Republic has produced so many baseball players (Alfonso Soriano, Miguel Tejada, Pedro Martinez, Albert Pujols, David Ortiz, Raul Mondesi, Sammy Sosa, Julio Franco) but I can't think of any from Haiti, even though they share the island of Hispaniola. (According to this article, about one in seven current Major League players were born in the D.R.) The beginning of this book review offers a clue. And here's an article about the Dominican dictator who brought in players from the Negro Leagues, including Satchel Paige. (Be sure to read Satchel's "Rules For Staying Young".)

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Brand & Band Names Combined

Much controversy about Robb's quadruple entry. Shell tried to disallow it, since the brand name (Rockport) was entirely contained in the band names (Kid Rock and Portishead). A compromise was reached: when the overlap uses just part of one word, the rest of the word must be used in another overlapping name. Therefore, Robb's record stands.

I thought I had a quintuple entry with "Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers Mark Almond Joy Division", but on further review, the Soft Cell singer spells his name "Marc". He would, wouldn't he?

Meanwhile, Packwood enters the fray with:

  • Iggy Pop Tarts
  • Hapag Lloyd Cole and the Commotions
  • Mr. Mister Clean
  • 38 Special K

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Combos: Product & Musical Act

More band-product names. Robb is miffed that I left out Midnight Oil of Olay. He then came up with a quadruple combo:
Kid Rock Portishead and Shoulders

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Combos: Product & Musical Act

New game from Shell. Combine the names of a well-known product and a musical group/artist. Shell, Robb and I have come up with:

  • No More Tears For Fears
  • Fatboy Slimjim
  • Fun Boy Three Musketeers
  • Simply Red Bull
  • Selsun Blue Oyster Cult
  • G.I. Joe Jackson
  • Formula 409 Inch Nails (controversial)
  • Dinosaur Junior Mints
  • Great White Out
  • Modest Mouse Trap
  • Old Spice Girls
  • The Sweet Tarts

And Robb is very proud of his "triple play": Clairol Nice 'n Easy E-Loan.

Monday, July 12, 2004

Sports: Appropriate Names

More apt sports names. Robb reminds me I forgot the name that gave him the idea: Jeff Bagwell. And let me add Johnny Bench to the list.

Eric expands the idea to other sports. Tim Duncan for basketball. Tiger Woods for golf. (I'll add Stewart Cink, as in "sink this putt").

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Movies: Turkey Quotes

How to guarantee risible movie dialogue with just one word.

Exhibit A: Gigli:

RICKI (Lopez): It's time to baste the turkey

GIGLI (Affleck): Huh?

RICKI: You heard me.

GIGLI: Gobble Gobble.

RICKI: Gobble Gobble.

Exhibit B: Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me:

LAURA: James, you don't know what you are talking about. Quit trying to hold on so tight. I'm gone ... long gone like a turkey through the corn.

JAMES: You're not a turkey. A turkey is one of the dumbest birds on earth.

LAURA: Gobble, gobble, gobble.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Sports: Appropriate Names

Robb suggests a topic: baseball players whose names refer to the sport. (He should really have his own Blog.) We came up with Cecil Fielder, Todd Walker, Chan Ho Park, Billy Bean, Art Fowler, and (blame Robb for this one) Joaquin Benoit. (Walk-een, get it?) Any others?

Cryptogram: Current Events

A topical Cryptogram:






Sunday, July 04, 2004

Military: German Helmets

Everything you ever wanted to know about German Helmets of WWII. I was actually searching for information about the earlier German helmets - why did they have a spike? (Robb's question.) Apparently, these are called Pickelhaube Helmets. The spike is purely ornamental.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

Music: The Fighting Cocks

The Fighting Cocks - a band with a rude slogan. "Love Somebody, Yes I Do" is worth a listen.

Comic Strips: "The Duplex"

I'm upset that the Dallas Morning News has dropped my favourite strip, "The Duplex", after their reader survey. I was going to ask you to vote for a reprieve but now I find that "The Duplex" is online. (Thanks to Jill for the suggestion.)

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Alliteration: Tennis Players

Great male tennis players. Great female tennis players. Note how many have alliterative names: Arthur Ashe, Andre Agassi, Boris Becker, Bill Bowrey, Dorothea Douglass, Henner Henkel, Kim Clijsters, Magdalena and Manuela Maleeva, Margaret Molesworth, Stan Smith, Ted Tilden, Tony Trabert