Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Sports: Appropriate Names

The baseball trade deadline brought some sport-appropriate names. I never thought of Eric Gagne until the Rangers traded him to Boston. He should really play in Montreal (his hometown), where they would appreciate that "gagner" is the French for "to win".

The Yankees acquired Wilson Betemit. He should do an ad for Wilson gloves, saying, "It's a better mitt."

And how come no one ever suggested Dave Winfield? His surname can be read as "win" + "field", or "W" + "infield". Did you know he's one of two players to be drafted by three different pro sports (and a fourth as a publicity stunt)?

New Ranger Neftali Feliz doesn't have an appropriate name (I think), but I propose we call him "Netflix". (I like how Baseball Prospectus shows an image that says, "We don't have a picture of this guy", with an "alt" tag of "He's probably very handsome".)

But the Rangers' biggest coup was getting the player with the longest surname in MLB history, Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The cameras caught him laughing with Kameron Loe in the dugout tonight about their discrepancy in name length. His name is an anagram of "Maharaja's Radical Clot".

Monday, July 30, 2007

Media: Weekly World News

The Weekly World News has ceased publication (but the website will remain). As Wikipedia states, the WWN was started to use the old black & white printing presses of the National Enquirer when it switched to colour. I'll miss seeing it at the supermaket checkout (although I only bought it once or twice). I never knew they had a financial column written by Sammy The Chatting Chimp ("Monkey Business"), or an advice column by Lester The Typing Horse ("Horse Sense").

And as for columnist Ed Anger, was he the inspiration for Earl Pitts, Uhmerikun?

Monday, July 23, 2007

Advertising: 12 Kinds Of Ads

There's a good Slate article and slideshow about the "12 kinds of ads" proposed by ad man Donald Gunn. One of the examples cited (Chris, take note) is the football-through-a-tire ad for Levitra.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

MP3: Holly Golightly

Go to the Daily Blizzard and pick up some MP3s from Holly Golightly and the Brokeoffs. The first track, "Devil Do", is a lovely stomp. Holly once sang on a White Stripes song, "I love Jack White like a little brother"

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Music: Mash-up

Brilliant Portishead/Cher mash-up from Idolator.

Or try The Cure vs Missy Elliot.

Here's a mash-up "how to" from an elderly woman.

If you prefer video mash-ups, here's a "Toy Story 2"/"Requiem For A Dream" mash-up.

Music: Son Volt

That's Son Volt singing "Hello Goodbye" in ESPN's David Beckham commercial. Meanwhile, Beckham remains a game time decision for his ballyhooed US debut.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Music: Mono In VCF

MONO IN VCF have a great sound (and Terry Jacks helped with their unreleased album). Not sure about the band name. Apparently, VCF is a synth term. (Recommended by Torr.)

In a completely different style, I recommend The Bees, who are known as A Band Of Bees in the US. (What? Was The Bees U.K. also taken?) Sunny Caribbean sound, but then they are from the Isle of Wight.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Marketing: Chalk Homer

Brilliant marketing stunt for "The Simpsons Movie": they've painted a picture of Homer beside the Cerne Abbas giant in Dorset. (That's the pagan figure with the rather large member. It looks like Homer is trying to play ring toss with a donut.)

The photo looks a little too perfect. Rarb, can your family in Dorset confirm that it's really there?

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Photography: Lady Bird Johnson Funeral

Please take a moment to look at this photo (by David J. Philip) of former Presidents and First Ladies at Lady Bird Johnson's funeral. Tell me that Bill Clinton isn't thinking, "LBJ gets 'Lady Bird'. I get stuck with 'Dragon Lady'."

Actors: Bill Paxton

Something Awful pays tribute to Bill Paxton, noting that he is "the only person to have been killed by a Terminator, a Predator, an Alien, and Pat Benatar". And adding, defensively, "Yes, Bill Paxton starred in the Thunderbirds movie in 2004. Did you see it? No? Then don't try to mock him for it. Maybe it was the best movie ever, you asshole."

Lyrics Quiz: Strange

Fancy a bit of "Strange"? (This quiz and that quote were RB's idea.)

  1. All across the nation - such a strange vibration.
  2. It's strange what desire will make foolish people do.
  3. All these strange relationships really get me down. I see nothin' wrong with spreading myself around.
  4. And in the darkened underpass, I thought, "Oh God, my chance has come at last." But then a strange fear gripped me and I just couldn't ask.
  5. ...Strange highs and strange lows...
  6. Strange voices are saying. (What did they say?) Things I can't understand.
  7. Any girl in the world could have easily known me better. She said, "You're strange but don't change," and I let her.
  8. Strange days indeed. Most peculiar, mama.
  9. Strange fascination, fascinating me.
  10. When your world is full of strange arrangements, and gravity won't pull you through.
  11. Ain't it funny, ain't it strange, the way a man's opinion changes when he starts to face that lonely night.
  12. We're sailing on a strange sea, blown by a strange wind, carrying the strangest crew that ever sinned.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Music: Mixed Messages

Eric suggests a new category: "bands that have two songs with opposite messages". He gives two examples:

  1. The Beatles - "Can't Buy Me Love" ("I don't care too much for money, for money can't buy me love") and "Money" ("You're lovin' gives me a thrill. But you're lovin' don't pay my bills. Now give me money").
  2. Lynyrd Skynyrd - "Saturday Night Special" ("so why don't we dump them (guns), people, to the bottom of the sea, before some old fool come around here wanna shoot either you or me"), and "Gimme Back My Bullets" ("Gimme back, gimme back my bullets. Oh put 'em back where they belong").

How about U2 with "Love Is Blindness" and ("ain't love") "The Sweetest Thing"? I'm sure there are many other artists with songs that extol the pleaure and pain of love.

Lou Reed had a song called "Sheltered Life" ("I've never taken dope and I've never taken drugs"), and about a hundred other songs that suggest the opposite ("Heroin", "Waiting For The Man", "White Light, White Heat", "Kicks"...)

Any others?

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Media: Chicago TV Reporter

Could someone please set this video to "Itsy-Bitsy Teeny-Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini"?

Monday, July 09, 2007

Lyrics Quiz: Mystery Theme 3

Eric offers this Lyrics Quiz, and dryly notes: "For some reason I thought of this theme recently." He adds a warning: "There's one band with two entries."

  1. When the sun shines, they slip into the shade, and sip their lemonade. When the sun shines...when the sun...shines.
  2. Oh no, my love's at an end. Oh no, it's...
  3. I went down Virginia, seekin' shelter from the storm. Caught up in the fable, I watched the tower grow. Five year plans and new deals, wrapped in golden chains. And I wonder, still I wonder...
  4. I can't sleep, and I lay and I think. The night is hot, and black as ink. Oh God, I need a drink...
  5. Someone told me long ago. There's a calm before the storm, I know; it's been comin' for some time.
  6. Now I know the secret; there is nothing that I lack. If I give my love to you, you'll surely give it back.
  7. Well there's a light in your eye that keeps shining, like a star that can't wait for the night. I hate to think I've been blinded baby, why can't I see you tonight?
  8. Been walking my mind to an easy time, my back turned towards the sun. Lord knows when the cold wind blows it'll turn your head around. Well, there's hours of time on the telephone line, to talk about things to come. Sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground.

Lookalikes: John Turturro as Billy Martin

In the new ESPN mini-series, "The Bronx Is Burning", John Turturro is fitted with prosthetic ears to play Billy Martin. Is it just me, or does he look like the Late Night character, Preparation H Raymond?

Doesn't look much like Billy Martin, from what I can see.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Music Video: Ironic Rap Covers

Under The Covers discusses "Ironic rap covers vs. unironic rap covers".

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Music: Old Men

You know what's hot in music right now? Geezers.

  • 58-year-old Nick Lowe has released the aptly-titled "At My Age", an "utterly fantastic sad-sack country record" (Village Voice). It gets 83 on Metacritic. (Listen to "The Club") And he recently became a father for the first time, telling The A.V. Club, "But he's a lovely fellow. He might be a blooming nuisance, but he is a lovely fellow."
  • 61-year-old Bryan Ferry has released his album of Dylan covers, "Dylanesque". (70 on Metacritic.) And he gave a great performance of "Let's Stick Together" at that Princess Di concert. Although a tad inappropriate considering her (and his) marital history.
  • 80-year-old (on Saturday) country music legend Charlie Louvin has released a self-titled album. It's one of those round-up-the-guest-stars deals (including bloody Elvis Costello - does he ever say "no"?), but it's still a solid record. Although Charlie's voice is worn, it still packs an emotional punch.
  • 60-year-old John Prine and 82-year-old Mac Wiseman have recorded an outstanding record of duets, "Standard Songs For Average People".

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Lyrics Quiz: 4th of July

  1. A real live nephew of my Uncle Sam's, born on the Fourth of July.
  2. Funny days in the park. Every day's the Fourth of July.
  3. Today's the Fourth of July. Another June has gone by. And when they light up our town, I just think, what a waste of gunpowder and sky.
  4. Who fell into you at a quarter to two, with a tear in your eye for the Fourth of July, for the patriots and the Minutemen, and the things you believe they believed in then.
  5. Sandy, the fireworks are hailin' over Little Eden tonight. Forcin' a light into all those stoned-out faces left stranded on this Fourth of July. Down in town, the circuit's full with switchblade lovers so fast, so shiny, so sharp. And the wizards play down on Pinball Way on the boardwalk way past dark.
  6. On the stairs I smoke a cigarette alone. The Mexican kids are shooting fireworks below. Hey, baby, it's the Fourth of July.
  7. I stayed at home on the Fourth of July, and I pulled the shades so I didn't have to see the sky. And I decided to have a Bed-In. But I forgot to invite anybody.
  8. Well she lit up the sky, that Fourth of July. By the time the firemen come, they
    just put out the flames and took down some names and send me to the county home.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Lookalikes: Chris Farley Baby

The Chris Farley lookalike baby. It's sad, but you'll laugh. (As seen on Defamer.)

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Musique: Mareva Galanter

Stumbled across a post on Between Thought And Expression that mentioned Mareva Galanter. It was the part about "former Miss France (and Shannon Elizabeth look-alike)" that got my attention. And yes, she's a looker. She's also a singer.

You must visit the official website for her album, "Ukuyéyé". Very well-designed, in a '60s Op-Art style. The last link on the middle row is the video for "Pourquoi Pas Moi?". The last link on the bottom row is for six "Scopitone" videos (apparently, a 16mm film jukebox). All are worth watching.