Saturday, February 28, 2009

Internet: Rickrolling

Have you heard of Rickrolling? A prankster sends a link that purports to be anything other than a Rick Astley video, but turns out to be Never Gonna Give You Up". What japes! Even Hitler got Rickroll'd! I like Obama's version - which led to McCain getting BarackRoll'd.

RickRolling can soothe crying babies.

Rick Astley took part in a live RickRolling at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade 2008.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Literature: Samuel Beckett

The Irish Independent reviews a book of Samuel Beckett's letters.
One of his correspondents was his Dublin friend Mary Manning whom he kept informed as to the progress of his tour, the latest rejections of his novel 'Murphy' and the inexorable development of a boil he had "between wind and water".

That's the classiest term for the taint that I've ever heard!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Movies: Academy Awards 2009

Stray thoughts while watching the Oscars.

  • I loved the Tina Fey/Steve Martin bit, because I love anything that sticks it to Scientology. Scientologists are idiots!
  • Jeers to ABC for showing Brad & Angelina while Jennifer Aniston was doing her schtick.
  • Did the audience laugh when the Art Direction guy said David Fincher was a wonderful human being?
  • That "Duchess" costume guy seemed a bit of a jerk - "We had great music by Rachel Portman but that's not it."
  • The Ben Stiller bit had great potential but went nowhere.
  • Even Baz Luhrman looked embarrassed by that dumb musical clusterfudge.
  • Joel Grey is tiny! I'd like to see the "Man On Wire" guy balance him on his chin.
  • Danny Boyle = Morrissey
  • Oscar song mash-up!
  • Kate Winslet is a big old fake. She is demeaning Hollywood with her fakeness.
  • Did Sean Penn say we elected the Elephant Man president? Just when you have him pegged as a bleeding arse liberal, he goes and insults Barack Obama.
  • Why do we have to see clips from former winners to appreciate this year's nominees, Stephen bloody Spielberg? It's all this montage crap that causes the show to run so bloody long.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Internet: Wikipedia Names Your Band

Here's a fun time-waster, courtesy of the internet.

  1. Go to Wikipedia. Hit "random". The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.
  2. Go to Random Quotations. The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
  3. Go to flickr and click on "explore the last seven days". The third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  4. Use Photoshop or similar to put it all together.

There's a group of these album covers on flickr.

Here's my contribution. Band name = Surberg (municipality in Bavaria). Album title = "Administered With Subhuman Inefficiency". (Quote from Eric Ambler.) Cover is a beautiful black and white shot of an elderly lady walking through a rain-slick town square at night, with head down. I suspect Surberg are a post-industrial German band, who make experimental "found sound" collages, live in a squat, but go home to get their laundry done.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Lyrics Quiz: Making Love

Just in time for Valentine's Day! (#9 and #10 have "Making Love" in the title.)

  1. Cast my memory back there, lord. Sometimes I'm overcome thinking about making love in the green grass, behind the stadium.
  2. Moving forward, using all my breath. Making love to you was never second best.
  3. Making love in the afternoon with ------- up in my bedroom. I got up to wash my face. When I come back to bed, someone's taken my place.
  4. We can funk until the dawn, making love 'til cherry's gone.
  5. I crawl like a viper through these suburban streets. Make love to these women, languid and bittersweet.
  6. A force from above, cleaning my soul. Flame on burn desire. Love with tongues of fire. Purge the soul. Make love your goal.
  7. Making love with his ego.
  8. A woman's love can lift you up, and women can inspire. I feel like buying flowers and hiring a celestial choir. A choir of castratis to serenade my love. They'd sing a little Bach for us and then we'd make love.
  9. If I had those golden dreams of my yesterdays, I would wrap you in the heaven 'til I'm dyin' on the way.
  10. And I know the roads to riches, and I know the ways to fame. I know all the rules, and then I know how to break 'em. And I always know the name of the game.

(2/21) And one more I forgot:
Drying up in conversation.
You will be the one who cannot talk.
All your insides fall to pieces.
You just sit there wishing you could still make love.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Radio: "The Story"

Heard a fascinating radio piece tonight from American Public Media's "The Story". When she was 7, Andrea Richardson Stowers lost her military pilot father in an air crash. She has tried to uncover details of his secret government work, but the power of the story lay in the smaller dramas of loss, guilt and coping.

There is more about the USAF crew (and what they were doing) at the Arlington Cemetery site.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Safety: Level Crossings

I challenge you to watch this video without exclaiming "Jesus!".

(Thanks to Neil for the link.)

Here's an Indian level crossing, and it's just as you would imagine.

This US video looks fake to me.

And finally, a brutal PSA from Australia.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

TV: Game Show Ideas

  • "Family Freud" - two families must psycho-analyze each other.
  • "Deeley Or No Deeley" - contestants must decide whether the show's hostess is, in fact, Cat Deeley, or one of the hundred other English people currently presenting US game shows.
  • "Cash Hansom Cab" - the History Channel's first game show. Contestants are transported in a horse-drawn carriage while answering questions about the 19th century.
  • "Depardieuy" - quiz where contestants must deliver their answers in the form of a Gérard Depardieu impression.
  • "The Leakiest Wink" - Wink Martindale competes against other people named Wink to see who has the best bladder control.

And a separate set of suggestions for BBC Northern Ireland:

  • "Countydown"
  • "The Newry Wed Game"
  • "Win, Lose Or Dromore"

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Advertising: Cheers & Jeers

  • Jeers to AT&T for their Pepe Le Pew commercial showing him being pursued by the female cat. He's always the one pursuing her! (Okay, maybe not always.)
  • Jeers to H&R Block for a series of ads showing shlubs bragging "I've got people". (Thus breaking my #1 rule for ads: never show unattractive people using your product.) This sauna one is the worst, because we have to look at the fat bald guy wearing only a towel. (It also really annoys me that I recognize him from somewhere - another commercial?)
  • Jeers to Budweiser for being Budweiser.
  • Jeers to for their annoyingly repetitious ad from Superbowl XLIII.
  • Jeers to Pizza Hut for their series of "hidden camera" spots where "ordinary people" (aka unemployed actors) are amazed that the crap they just ate came from Pizza Hut. (These ads are better backwards because you get to see the patrons spitting out the food.) The ad I hate most is where Chef Elisabeth has her hipster friends try "The Natural". It's her hand motions that annoy me most. Folgers were doing this back in the '70s.