4 June 2003
Hey, it could happen

Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins and Rozanda "Chilli" Thomas, the two surviving members of hip-hop/R&B group TLC, have filed suit in a Georgia court charging Discovery Communications, Inc., owner of The Learning Channel, with trademark infringement. The cable channel's logo consists of the three letters T L C in a serif font, under which is placed the motto "Life Unscripted".

"It is obvious," said Watkins, "that Discovery is taking advantage of, and intends to further take advantage of, our collective name and persona without seeking our consent. Our dear friend Left Eye [Lisa Lopes, who was killed in an automobile accident in Honduras in 2002] would never forgive us if we let this matter slide."

"Besides," added Thomas, "we're a lot better looking than Spike Lee."

A spokesman for Discovery Communications said he had not seen the suit, but pointed out that Discovery's rebranding of The Learning Channel took place in 1991, one year before Watkins, Lopes and Thomas formed their group in Atlanta.

(Inspired by this Cam Edwards post)

Permalink to this item (posted at 8:20 PM)
2 November 2003
Now it can be told

The secret origin of the term "metrosexual," as filched from a mayonnaise jar on Funk and Wagnalls' porch:

"Jeebus, Myrtle, would you look at this. Brights. Every doofus who can bang two syllables together suddenly thinks he's a goddamn movement, fercrissake. I oughta think of something stupid like that just to watch people fall all over themselves to jump on the bandwagon. Now let's see...."

At this writing, Myrtle remains unavailable for comment.

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:01 PM)
9 January 2004
Dennis gazes skyward

NEW ROME, OH (WATSO*): Democratic Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich today lashed out at the Bush administration's space-exploration proposals, calling them "ill-advised" and "unnecessarily bellicose."

"The very idea of going to Mars," said the former Ohio Congressman, "encapsulates everything that's wrong with George Bush. In the first place, it's a red planet. This is yet another example of the Bush administration's schemes to reward its friends and punish its enemies. There is no evidence that Karl Rove, or any of Bush's advisers, made the slightest effort to locate a blue planet for exploration."

Another problem, said Kucinich, is the nature of Mars itself. "It's the planet of war. How many times must we go through this? War, war, war. It's the only thing George Bush knows."

The Kucinich campaign has yet to release formally any alternative plan for space exploration, but the candidate hinted at some of the ideas he'd like to see in such a plan. "We're looking towards Venus, which is, after all, a planet of women, who have been cruelly underrepresented in the space program up to now, and then, perhaps in our second term, Vulcan, where war and hatred have been replaced by reason and logic. As Americans, we deserve no less."

*With apologies to Scott Ott

Permalink to this item (posted at 10:50 AM)
21 July 2004
They're younger than that now

The history of the Japanese game manufacturer Nintendo goes all the way back to the 80s.

That would be the 1880s.

I knew this — read it somewhere back around 1990 — but I had no idea about Google's origins in the early 1960s.

(Via the ageless Dean Esmay.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 8:42 AM)
22 December 2004
This plate sucks

New Jersey license plate

This got past the guardians of decency in Trenton, while actual Jersey girls made fun of my non-vanity Oklahoma plate?

Someone please tell me this is Photoshopped.

(Purloined from Gawker.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 5:09 PM)
17 March 2005
Your basic New York state of mind

Lesley anticipates the next move by New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer:

Eliot Spitzer announced, today, that he was opening an inquiry into the amount of dust in the universe. "New Yorkers live in the universe. Therefore, we consider it within the venue of the New York State Attorney General's office to investigate the amount of dust in the universe and the adverse impact it has on the health of New Yorkers. We hope the universe will cooperate with my office in reaching a reasonable settlement." When asked if he would consider filing a lawsuit if an amicable settlement could not be reached, Spitzer replied "We're not ruling out any options at this time."

The universe was unavailable for comment.

But had the universe answered its phone, I'm sure it would have said something to the effect of "Bwahahahaha!"

Permalink to this item (posted at 4:16 PM)
20 February 2006
Fighting global warming

It's not generally known, but the Belle Isle Bridge on Oklahoma City's north side was originally designed as an environmental tool for use in the slowly-warming Arctic: once installed, it would trap ice particles and retain them as long as possible along its surface during the winter, thereby helping to keep the temperature down and the polar-bear habitat intact. When the Canadians refused to pick up their half of the development tab, the inventors abandoned the project and sold the prototype at a substantial discount to ODOT, which put it to use as a mundane transportation module.

Permalink to this item (posted at 3:07 PM)
21 February 2006
Baby, the rain must fall

Although not like this.

Permalink to this item (posted at 10:18 AM)
29 March 2006
Even George Mason cracked a smile

What? You didn't have Maguire University (Chicago, Illinois) on your bracket? Tsk, tsk. Maguire is always a presence at the Big Dance.

(Via Fark.com)

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:10 AM)
11 April 2006
Sex, Yellow Dye #5, and rock 'n roll

It's even timely, sort of: Great Moments In Rock And Roll History (As Reenacted by Marshmallow Peeps®).

(Purloined from E. M. Zanotti.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 8:47 PM)
13 April 2006
Coming soon, as it were

Brokeback Mountain 2: The Fur Traders.

(Recommended by Michael Blowhard.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 11:51 AM)
21 April 2006
The Nazgul going NASCAR

You can be a hobbit and still be a redneck. Possible indications:

  • You've got a bow rack on the back of your haywain.
  • The trailer park where you live is situated in the Dead Marshes.
  • Saruman refused to use you as breeding stock.
  • You're the wiseguy who sneaked out in the dead of night to affix the bumpersticker that reads "I Brake for Balrogs" on the back of Gandalf's cart.
  • You use the mirror of Galadriel as a spittoon.
  • You ask the singing Elves at Rivendell if they know any Merle Haggard.
  • An Ent tried to stomp you even AFTER he heard you talking.

This will no doubt get me barred from the Shire.

Permalink to this item (posted at 8:15 PM)
9 May 2006
Dearborn fantasies

I did actually spot this as a fake when I saw the original magazine article, although not right away; what's bizarre is that I still want one.

Not that I expect Bill Ford to sign off on production plans, but I think they ought to build one for the show circuit, just to make people shriek.

Permalink to this item (posted at 4:22 PM)
18 May 2006
Maybe you can get there from here

I have some grave doubts about this contraption, but if it ever gets built, I am there, Jack:

  1. A full body teleportation system consisting of: generating a pulsed gravitational wave which propagates through a magnetic vortex wormhole generator; and generating a wormhole with the magnetic vortex generator whereby the pulsed gravitational wave traverses through the wormhole and enters into hyperspace where the wave is enormously magnified due to the lower speed of light in that dimension.

  2. The method of claim 1, wherein the step of generating the pulsed gravitational wave comprises: using two granite stone obelisks; mounting monochromatic-wave toroidal waveguides on top of each obelisk to create a rotating, twisting, propagating gravitational wave through the vertical axis of each obelisk; and creating a cylindrical compression and expansion in each obelisk to produce a plane gravitational wave traveling down the centerline between the two obelisks.

  3. The method of claim 1, wherein the step of generating a wormhole into hyperspace comprises: using two concentric cylindrical solenoidal coils of different radii connected by a single wire wrapped in opposite directions on thin iron transformer laminate; generating bucking electric fields down the centerline of the vortex generator which creates a spacetime curvature distortion with negative energy in accordance with Einstein's General Theory of Relativity.

  4. A teleportation system comprising: generating a gravitational wave traveling through hyperspace which interacts with the human energy being; and pulling the human energy being and physical body out of dimension when interacting with the pulsed gravitational wave such that the person is teleported from one location to another through hyperspace and back again into our 4D spacetime dimension.

Jargon aside, a Trekker (n. a Trekkie who objects to the term "Trekkie") will tell you up front that the first transporter really doesn't matter.

Now the second transporter, that's the important one.

(Beamed up from Tim Blair.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 6:09 AM)
25 May 2006
They also surf who only stand on waves

So how's that giant tsunami in the Atlantic working out?

Permalink to this item (posted at 6:23 AM)
29 May 2006
"Baja Kansas" is out

Fake news item: "Responding to mounting public pressure that the name of the nation's 46th state is offensive to Native Americans, the Oklahoma Legislature has passed and Governor Brad Henry has signed into law legislation that will change the name of the state of Oklahoma effective November 16, 2007. The law, which was drafted by Oklahoma State Senator Polly K. Rekt (I-Bowlegs), calls for a blue-ribbon commission, selected by the Governor, to propose three new names for the state."

From my own Pabst Blue Ribbon commission, the Top Ten Unlikely New Names for the State Previously Known as Oklahoma:

  1. Bricktown Adjacent
  2. Nazareno
  3. Funnelland
  4. Shotkickers
  5. New New Mexico
  6. Istuchas
  7. [this space reserved for Rodgers and/or Hammerstein]
  8. Claynation
  9. Arrid Extra Dry
  10. Dustbury [under license]

New signage will go up about as soon as we finish cleaning up the rest stops on the Interstates.

Permalink to this item (posted at 1:22 PM)
7 August 2006
Presumably cut from Episode III

"Hey, if the Dark Lord of the Sith wants to indulge his fantasies of being a Japanese schoolgirl, who am I to stand in his way?"

(Courtesy of Dr B.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 11:29 AM)
9 August 2006
Nice pair, as it were

The late Shel Silverstein wrote a poem, eventually a song, called "Stacy Brown Got Two", and, well, it goes like this:

Do you know the reason for his success? (No we don't, so tell us)
They say that he is double blessed (Not like you fellas)
They say that Stacy Brown was born
Just a little bit deformed
But still his girlfriends wake up smilin' every morn.

(Singing) Everybody got one (Everybody got one)
Everybody got one (Everybody got one)
Everybody got one (Everybody got one)
But Stacy Brown got two.

Esquire seems to have found him a date.

Permalink to this item (posted at 2:00 PM)
13 August 2006
Being given the Randaround

Seen at OkCupid:

So a few days ago, somewhere on the internet (I'm simply too lazy to go find where) someone commented on a journal post that Ayn Rand was being pretentious for spelling her name with a "y" in the middle, like she was some kind of Mary-Sue named Krystyna.

Being slightly less lazy, I went looking, and came up with this:

I will call her "Ann" until my dying day, because it's a real name (and because I have a mental block against using the correct one), and it annoys the snot out of me when pretentious college boys correct me all the time. I mean, even she admits that she sort of made it up! In a letter to a fan in 1937, she said this, "Your letter inquiring about the origin of my name has been forwarded to me. In answer to your question, I must say that 'Ayn' is both a real name and an invention. The original of it is a Finnish feminine name.... Its pronunciation, spelled phonetically, would be: 'I-na.' I do not know what its correct spelling should be in English, but I chose to make it 'Ayn,' eliminating the final 'a.' I pronounce it as the letter 'I' with an 'n' added to it." And her birth name? Was Alisa. What's wrong with that? I can pronounce that correctly!

Of course, this is crossposted over there as well.

Permalink to this item (posted at 1:23 PM)
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The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

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