Terrible Twos extended

Icepick is not fooled by that “Trusting Threes” routine:

The “Terrible Twos” are merely a marketing ploy by three-year-olds, designed to throw parents off the track of how bad three-year-olds behave. You see, by the time a child hits three they become very capable, in an absolute sense. By this I mean they know how things work: doors, locks, caps on spice bottles, plumbing fixtures, ladders, chain saws, lathes, Machiavellian interpersonal machinations, etc. They can do a lot with those skills, in an absolute sense. And they all have the same kind of outlook on law and order that one would expect of devotees of the Anarchist Cookbook.

Allegedly, I was three for about four and a half years. I don’t remember it that way, but of course I wouldn’t.

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Revved up for the Deuce

There are more 1932 Fords now than Ford ever built: the demand for the ’32 body, the basis for so many custom rods, has never slackened, which has insured a steady supply of fiberglass reproduction bodies. It’s not too surprising to see that Ford has decided to get a piece of the action, but they’re not going to sell you plastic:

The aftermarket is replete with companies that will sell you a fiberglass body in the form of a ’32 Ford coupe, but quality can be hit or miss. So to help meet demand among hot rod builders and enthusiasts, Ford has teamed up with United Pacific Industries to offer officially licensed body shells.

Announced at the SEMA show in November, the ’32 Ford 5-Window Coupe body is made from stamped steel according to original specifications from original machinery where possible or reproduced machinery built to the same original specifications where necessary. The bodies are ready to accept vintage powertrains or crate motors from the Ford Racing catalog, and join the 9,000 other parts offered in the Ford Component Sales catalog.

Don’t want a Deuce Coupe? Dearborn will happily sell you a ’40 Ford or a first-generation Mustang shell.

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Dunham already

I don’t understand all the flapdoodle over Lena Dunham and her HBO series Girls, and I really don’t understand why it’s such a big deal that Dunham often appears on the show undressed.

There’s some sort of effort to paint Dunham’s efforts “revolutionary” because she’s fairly average in appearance, unlike, we are supposed to presume, every other woman who’s ever been unclothed on screen. If there’s anything “revolutionary” about this sort of thing, it’s that they didn’t hire an actual beauty and then downgrade her appearance with the tricks of the theatrical trade. See, for instance, Charlize Theron as serial killer Aileen Wuornos in Monster; Theron was lionized for her disappearance into the role, when they could have just hired someone who didn’t need the extensive makeup job.

Dunham, I think, could have sidestepped most of the drama had she basically told reporter Tim Molloy to stick it in his ear, instead of this:

“[The nude scenes are] a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive … But I totally get it. If you’re not into me, that’s your problem and you’re going to have to work that out with professionals.”

But she was evidently anxious to make this a Teachable Moment, which gets the kind of response it deserves:

A man who isn’t “into” Lena Dunham has a “problem”? He needs “to work that out with professionals”? As in, reparative therapy?

Look, I don’t know if Tim Molloy is gay or not, but to say that a man who isn’t attracted to Lena Dunham needs professional help?

It would be nice if both sides of the gender aisle (and the straddlers thereupon) would simply acknowledge the fact that zeroes are zeroes and tens are tens and both are few and far between — and most of us are going to spend our lives with someone somewhere in between, or no one at all.

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More diva than devi

Sherlyn Chopra, last seen here, was furious on Twitter the past couple of days, and apparently it’s because she thought she was being snubbed:

Sherlyn Chopra’s absence was conspicuous at the promotional event of the babe’s forthcoming release Kamasutra 3D. While Sherlyn has been going gaga about her erotic drama till recently but she has suddenly chosen to maintain a low profile — so much so that she was not even seen at the promotion of her own movie.

We hear that in spite of getting repeated requests from director Rupesh Paul, the sexy gal refused to turn up at the event. A secret birdie has chirped to us that Sherlyn is not particularly happy about the little screen time she has been given in the promo of the movie.

So I hunted down the English-language trailer — as befits a Bollywood epic, it’s over three minutes long — and considering the ostensible subject matter, Chopra does seem to get short-ish shrift. Take a look:

Then again, Chopra is famously hot-headed. Her Wikipedia page, as of earlier this week, offered a possible explanation:

Screenshot from Wikipedia page on Sherlyn Chopra

Yep. That would do it.

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Dead aim on the metatarsals

Apparently it is possible to shoot yourself in the foot while said foot is in your mouth:

The part that hurts, of course, is that someone had to buy that prefab decal, so there must be More Of Them out there.

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We are the eye in the sky

You may remember this from a few days back:

Last week, Ford’s Global VP of Marketing and Sales, Jim Farley, told a panel discussion at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas that Ford has access to data on its customers’ driving habits via the GPS system installed in their cars. “We know everyone who breaks the law, we know when you’re doing it. We have GPS in your car, so we know what you’re doing. By the way, we don’t supply that data to anyone,” he said.

It took about 24 hours for Farley to backpedal:

The next day Mr. Farley adjusted his statement to avoid giving the wrong impression saying that the statement was hypothetical and that Ford does not routinely collect information on, or otherwise track, drivers through their GPS systems without those drivers’ consent and approval. That approval comes from turning on and opting into specific services like 911 Assist and something called Sync Services Directions, a system that links the GPS system to users’ cellular phones.

Which you, as a Ford owner, were aware you were consenting to, right?

Then again, most of us give up information something less than grudgingly:

Years ago I read a factoid that said when most Americans have the opportunity to opt out of junk mail, things like advertising brochures and store catalogs, we actually sign up for more. I think that’s as true today as it was back then. We don’t like intrusive forms of advertising like phone calls during the dinner hour and pop-up ads in our browsers, but generally speaking the average American doesn’t mind things like targeted ads that appear off to the side or above a website’s banner. These things are, we know, a necessary evil, the price we pay for free content. After all, someone has to pay the bills in order to keep a website running and targeted ads based on my browsing history are an effective way of getting me to see a product I might actually buy.

Or, in my case, getting me to see one I looked at but didn’t buy, and continuing to get me to see it until I give in.

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Burning down the House

One chamber of legislative ne’er-do-wells is apparently enough:

Senate Joint Resolution 43, filed by Sen. Patrick Anderson, R-Enid, would allow voters to create a constitutional amendment creating a unicameral legislature consisting of 48 legislators, effectively dissolving the Oklahoma House of Representatives.

Because, you know, he’s not going to jeopardize his job by asking for the Senate to be killed.

Anderson says he wants to save a few bucks, not the worst idea in the world, though it would have been nice if he’d said something about Reynolds v. Sims, in which the Supreme Court decided that legislative houses in the states had to be divided into equal population districts. (Before this 1964 decision, each county would have at least one House member, regardless of population.) In effect, this makes one chamber in each and every bicameral state legislature — all 49 of them — largely irrelevant. Then again, Reynolds was decided three years before Anderson was born, so it’s probably not uppermost in his mind.

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Lossless compression

A few posts ago, I said I would atone for paying attention to some long-legged British Amazon in the Daily Mail by focusing on someone a bit shorter. How much shorter? This much shorter:

We learn two things from this:

  • Christina Ricci will indeed fit in a minifridge;
  • If you want to try this — and I’m pretty sure you don’t — unplug it first.

Why wasn’t I following this woman on Twitter before?

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In precisely that order

I’m assuming this is true for all law students, not just those at ‘Bama.

the stages of law school.

1 — yay, I’m in law school I’m going to get some great job and make millions.

2 — I’m not going to accept any summer job less than like $20 an hour, $10 is insulting.

3 — $10 isn’t as bad as it sounds, I mean it’s something, right?

4 — do you think if I emailed this person they would let me intern? i mean hell I’ll do it for free, i just want the experience.

5 — OMG will I ever find a job?

With modifications, this will fit rather a lot of situations.

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Speed of execution

As everyone remembers, the Memphis Grizzlies excel at demolishing the Westbrook-less Thunder. And these Grizzlies are better than the last batch of Grizzlies — Courtney Lee is more or less assimilated, and Marc Gasol is back in action — so I didn’t expect a repeat of the 116-100 win from December. The issue, as always with Memphis, is which team enforces its preferred pace; the Grizzlies prevailed in the first and third quarters, the Thunder in the second, and the teams fought on more or less equal terms in the fourth — although Memphis went into the final twelve minutes with a five-point lead, and the Griz were still up four with ten seconds left. Serge Ibaka delivered a trey, but Lee knocked down two free throws in the last second to give Memphis a 90-87 win.

This is one game where the plus/minus numbers are scary. All the Thunder reserves were plus; all the starters were minus. The bench, as usual, did yeoman work, contributing 20 points to the cause; the Memphis bench managed only 10. But Ibaka got into double figures only after that last-minute trey, which gave him 11; Reggie Jackson had 17, and might have had more had he not been bedeviled with personal fouls. Yeah, Kevin Durant had 37, but you have to figure Kevin Durant would have 37 against the Justice League of America.

If they were watching Gasol’s minutes, they apparently weren’t paranoid about it; the big guy put in 24 minutes and scored 12. Lee led the Griz with 24; Zach Randolph was right behind with 23, and the perennially-scary Mike Conley dropped in 19. Memphis is now within one game of .500, and if they’re healthy — which means, basically, if Tony Allen gets better — they may be in this playoff hunt after all.

As will the Thunder, though now they’re 28-10, and the next two will be tricky: at Houston on Thursday, and against Golden State back at the ‘Peake on Friday. Either, or both, are capable of inflicting further damage on the wounded Thunder.

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He who made kittens put snakes in the grass

Apparently there exists something called Jungle January, in which persons skilled with the needle are invited to come up with something suitably exotic for themselves. Lynn’s participating this year with her own spiffy creation, a burgundy-ish dress with a front panel just jam-packed with giraffes.

Weirdly, this hit my timeline yesterday:

I like it, but I think Lynn has the better of it — especially considering what Lilly is asking for this.

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Just sheets, Sherlock

Half a dozen arguments are offered here for sleeping in the altogether, and while I’m not in a position to challenge any of them — to put it bluntly, I have no hoo-ha to air out — I can say that they’ve missed the one that’s most important to me: I am a fairly thrashy sleeper, and anything I might be wearing is apt to end up ripped or on the floor or both.

Also left out of the discussion: if you own no pajamas, you are unlikely to run afoul of city ordinances against appearing in public in pajamas.

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Worst friends forever

Rule 63 of the Internet holds that for every fictional character, there exists an opposite-gender counterpart. Just about everypony in Equestria has been sixty-three’d at one time or another; arguably the most popular is the colt version of Twilight Sparkle, almost universally named Dusk Shine.

The following spammer, caught in Akismet yesterday, apparently isn’t up to Dusk’s high standards:

Dung Shine

I’m guessing he’s the black — um, brown — sheep of the family.

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Up to the sky

The Daily Mail has become the go-to place for odd commentary about body parts, especially female body parts, and while this sort of thing does nothing (usually) for readers’ body image, it does wonders for selling text ads to Brits vaguely embarrassed by topless Page 3 girls.

Alexandra Robertson, 20, a six-foot-one British model, gets her 15 minutes in the spotlight by dint of having what she says are 47-inch-long legs, the longest in the known world. (Photos perhaps not to scale.)

Alexandra Robertson photos

Robertson’s claim apparently was sparked by a Mail piece on 18-year-old prelaw student Anastasia Strashveskaya, who won a contest in Russia last week with 42-inch gams.

No word from Guinness, which supposedly conferred the World’s Longest title on Svetlana Pankratova after measuring her stems at 52 inches.

As penance, I will go look at pictures of five-foot-one Christina Ricci.

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And it was all yellow

Do you, in fact, have any Pasteurized Recipe Cheese Product at all?

While the current Cheesepocalypse is a difficult time for our great nation, we are incredibly humbled and appreciative of the outpouring of love and support for the Liquid Gold of Velveeta. As you have likely seen or heard by now on social networks and major media outlets, there is currently limited availability of some Velveeta products in many stores nationwide. We want you to hear directly from us that it’s true — we are experiencing a temporary scarcity of our nation’s most precious commodity: Liquid Gold. But please know that we are working tirelessly to get more Velveeta on store shelves as soon as possible and that this was in no way a “publicity stunt.” We always want Velveeta where it belongs — in your hands, in your homes and in your stomachs.

This hysterical rant calls for some historical perspective. And few places have as much cheese history as Orange County, New York: Emil Frey, working for the Monroe Cheese Company, first developed Liederkranz, a variation on Limburger. He was eventually shipped off to Monroe’s second location:

The company opened a second factory in Covington, Pennsylvania, where it made mostly Swiss cheese. But many of the cheese wheels broke or were misshapen… [T]he broken bits were shipped back to Monroe, where Frey spent the next two years tinkering with them on his home stove. In 1918, he had his second big break. He discovered that mixing the broken wheels with other cheese byproducts created a smooth end-product with a velvety consistency. He named it Velveeta.

This brand spun off into the independent Velveeta Cheese Company, incorporated on Feb. 14, 1923.

Velveeta, in fact, was the last cheese-like substance to be manufactured in Monroe; its original parent company had decamped for Ohio in 1926, and the following year, Kraft acquired Velveeta.

Incidentally, Orange County was also the original home of Philadelphia Cream Cheese, created by Lawrence & Durland of Chester, New York.

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High-fructose cornball

The nonprofit (that’s a legal term) Center for Science in the Public Interest is headed by Michael Jacobson, once described by me as “the Perez Hilton of health”; when he’s not haranguing Starbucks into putting out a Broccoli Venti, he’s sending out something called the Nutrition Action Healthletter, a promotion for which landed on my doorstep in an envelope ominously marked “You Wanted This.” Obviously NSA isn’t as efficient as they think they are.

One of the sheets is headed “We Name Names!” It contains specific examples of Things You Dare Not Eat, including Cold Stone Creamery’s Oh Fudge! shake in the “Gotta Have It” size (24 ounces), which contains, they say, “the saturated fat content of two 16-oz ribeye steaks plus a buttered baked potato, all blended into a handy 24-oz cup.” Truth be told, I don’t think I could get both those steaks and a spud into my Seventies-vintage blender, but now I’m keen to try.

I was most amused, though, by the pitch for watermelon: “When they’re in season, watermelons are often locally grown, which means they may have a smaller carbon footprint than some other fruits.” This would almost make sense if they hadn’t also plugged mangoes, which are grown on this continent in laughably small quantities; flying in a bag of mangoes is likely to burn up more precious hydrocarbons than trucking in a couple of dozen watermelons.

Still, there’s nothing here appreciably more alarmist than your average issue of Consumer Reports, and it’s decidedly cheaper: $20 for a year. Then again, Jacobson doesn’t test cars, and if he did, he’d want to know why we’d own such fiendish devices in the first place.

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