Someone planted a page in the score

Led Zep meets Ludwig Van:

Of course, the cello is a quintessential metal instrument — see, for instance, Apocalyptica — but it also works well on that classical-era stuff.

(Via Laughing Squid.)

Comments (3)




Salami hiding

Not surprisingly, they’re looking for him:

Thanks to tips from the public, Dallas police say they have identified an indecent exposure suspect who allegedly exposed himself in front of the victim and began masturbating twice in two days this week.

Now they’re asking the public if they know where the alleged suspect, Jibril Salami, is hiding.

At the very least, this guy needs to get a grip.

(With thanks to Kris Wood.)

Comments (2)




The body in rebellion

And you wonder if it’s ever going to behave itself again:

I have a much higher pain threshold than a lot of people I know, but it’s a skill rather than an inborn trait.

I can train myself for this, if it lasts long enough, but this far into an ordeal that is costing me so much sleep, the long term is not high on my list of priorities.

This is not to say that he’s just sitting there and taking it:

I move around and stretch out as best I can to work the knots out, and for a man of my age and weight class I’m finding I can make my hip and knee joints do things that could probably have gotten me a spot on Johnny Carson, back in the ’70s or so.

It turns out I have to do those things to keep up with my younger (and quite a bit heavier) self. And I have yet to adjust myself to thinking of “trick” as an adjective: “trick knee.” Which it is; though the nervous system seems to be tricker, and the brain interpretation of that nervous system may be the trickest of all.

Comments (3)




From the Oxford files

Not everyone has an opinion on the Oxford comma; some people simply don’t give a fark. Still, there are times when you absolutely need that extra little bit of punctuation, and Michael Barone’s Friday column was one of them. As it appeared in the local paper on Saturday:

Ted Cruz showed an ability to adapt to terrain and vary his approach from his usual college-debater style. Appearing with his wife, mother and supporter Carly Fiorina, he spoke of the achievements and tragedies of women in his life.

I admit to a certain fondness for Carly Fiorina, but I had no idea she was that busy.

Someone at the Washington Examiner, Barone’s home base, has since rewritten the paragraph.

Comments (2)




Nobody sleeping here

The last NBA game ever at Sleep Train Arena, formerly Arco Arena, might well have been every bit as loud as the games during the Good Old Days, one of which made it into Guinness, and the Sacramento Kings took full advantage of that noisy crowd to administer a thrashing to the Thunder, 114-112, evening the season series at two games each (1-1 in both Oklahoma City and Sacramento) and making some folks wonder how OKC is going to get through a whole playoff round if they can’t beat a team with 48 losses. It was mostly close all night, with the Thunder managing to win the first and third quarters, the Kings the second and fourth. This is not to say that the Kings had it easy in that final frame: with 24 seconds left, the Kings were up seven, but seventeen seconds later, that lead was cut to three, and Russell Westbrook knocked out three free throws to tie it. After “the longest five-count” radio guy Matt Pinto said he’d ever seen, a foul was called, Rudy Gay, who’d obligingly missed a few free throws in those waning moments, hit two of them, and that was the end of that.

Part of the problem for the Thunder was Curry. No, not Steph, but his younger brother Seth, coming off the Kings bench to collect 20 points, hitting six of ten treys. Darren Collison, running the offense while Rajon Rondo got some rest, had 27 points, his season high, and those Rudy Gay freebies brought him up to 22. The Kings, as noted, had problems from the stripe, hitting only 11 of 20, but they more than made up for that with actual field goals, 45-94 versus 39-80. (Weirdly, both teams were 13-32 from outside the arc.) And as has been often the case, the glaring number was 21: the number of turnovers given up by the Thunder. The Kings coughed it up only 11 times. Westbrook ended up with 24 points and 10 assist, the game’s only double-double; Kevin Durant made it up to 31, but he had to make 29 shots to get there.

None of this changes the playoff picture. OKC, third in the West, will play the #6 team; both Portland and Memphis lost tonight, leaving the Blazers in fifth, half a game in front of the Griz. The Rockets are in ninth, one game behind the Jazz with three to play. The marquee game tomorrow, of course, is Golden State at San Antonio: no team, not even the mighty Warriors, has beaten the Spurs at home all year. It says something about this season that even that game doesn’t change the playoff picture.

Comments




Why Microsoft doesn’t rule the Web

People trying to save Word documents as HTML end up with garbage like this:

And that’s before you ever get to any of the actual document.

Upside: at least it isn’t Flash.

(Via @SwiftOnSecurity.)

Comments (1)




Meteoric rise

Canadian singer Lights, who won me over several years back with the crisply upbeat yet weepingly sad “Second Go,” continues to perplex and amaze. She circulated this photo earlier this week:

Thank you, Mom.

Lights finds a seat

Yesterday she unleashed upon us Midnight Machines, a new album containing acoustic versions of six songs from her previous album Little Machines plus two new tracks. The lead single is the revised version of “Meteorites,” and all of a sudden it’s haunting. A bit of photographic trickery merely makes it seem more so:

This is, incidentally, the third time she’s followed an album with an unplugged version. (How many albums has she done? Three, plus three acoustics.) Perplexing, perhaps; but also amazing.

Comments




Future journalist

What am I saying? She’s already a journalist, and she’s already paid more dues than some of the pros in the business. Admittedly, her beginning was less than auspicious:

Hi. I’m Hilde Lysiak. I’m the publisher of the Orange Street News. I believe it is important to write this newspaper because I believe people need to know what is happening around Orange Street. I’m eight years old and love to play outside and also love holidays and birthdays. I hope you enjoy this issue of the Orange Street News and pick up the next issue.

But that was over a year ago. Last week:

A man is suspected of murdering his wife with a hammer at 9th Street in Selinsgrove, sources told the Orange Street News.

Law enforcement sources will not confirm.

“This is an ongoing investigation,” an officer told the Orange Street News.

Residents reported seeing a person taken out on a stretcher but were told by police not to talk to media.

“They told us we can’t talk about anything,” one neighbor told the Orange Street News.

The woman is a former Selinsgrove borough employee. Many neighbors remembered her fondly.

“This is terrible. Just terrible,” one neighbor told the OSN. “I can’t believe this happened. She was such a wonderful woman. Very kind.”

The suspected murdered was a retired school teacher at Selinsgrove and the victim also worked as branch manager at a local bank manager on Market Street, according to neighbors.

Amazingly, she caught some flak for reporting on this. She ably defended herself in the Guardian (yes, the actual Guardian):

Here’s what happened. On 2 April, there was a homicide in Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania. It took place just a few blocks from my house, where I run my newspaper.

I acted on a tip from a good source that I was able to get through some of my other reporting. After confirming with the police department, I then went straight to the scene and spoke to neighbors and got more information. I worked very hard.

Because of my work I was able to keep the people of Selinsgrove informed about this very important event hours before my competition even got to the scene.

In fact, some other news sites run by adults were reporting the wrong information or no information at all while the Orange Street News was at the scene doing the hard work to report the facts to the people.

Consider yourselves called out, haters.

Me, I’m now subscribing to the Orange Street News, because this sort of enterprise needs to be supported. (As Robert Stacy McCain would say: “Hit the freaking tip jar!”)

Comments (6)




An example to follow

I would never, ever tell you that you really ought to blog the way I do. (Okay, I did reveal the trade secret just once.) But I am happy to endorse this particular advice:

You should blog like future employers have no idea how Google works. And by that I don’t mean that you should post nude pictures of yourself online. Never do that. Unless your last name is Kardashian, and then I think it will actually work out in your favor. But you should write what you feel and what you believe. Don’t worry about whether or not it jives with the view of a potential employer. I spent a lot of time blogging that way, and I can tell you that that way lies madness.

If you find yourself doing something that you don’t like, go ahead and delete it all. Some time last year I hit a wall, and deleted almost all of my blog posts. I did this because those posts didn’t feel like me. I realized I was writing a completely different blog. And since having deleted those posts and starting over, I’m averaging more page views, my social media interaction is up, and I’m proud of what I’ve put out there. When all the web gurus tell you to be authentic, they aren’t kidding. Just do it. Be real, and blog about what you want to write about.

And if your last name is Kardashian, what the heck are you doing here?

Seriously, this is what I think of as good advice. My boss reads this stuff on occasion, but I have no reason to think anything I say here has precipitated any corner-office discussion. (It helps that I’m somewhere below nowhere on the corporate org chart.) I haven’t deleted much stuff here over the years, but there’s not a whole lot here that doesn’t sound like me either.

Comments




It was twenty years ago today

The Bird, circa 1997I’m just as amazed as you are: this Web site was actually founded on 9 April 1996, and at the time, all of it would fit on a 3.5-inch floppy. (Okay, not a 720k 3.5-inch floppy, but let’s not get technical here.) I’m declaring an open thread for the day; however, I am not actually going to take the day off, because, well, I just don’t do that sort of thing. I never figured this place would last this long. Then again, I never really figured I would last this long, and we know how well that worked out.

Comments (27)




Meanwhile on the Texas Gulf Coast

Geography classes, these days, are evidently about everything other than geography:

To misplace the nation’s seventh largest city is — well, actually, all you can expect from the dullards who believe themselves in charge of the National Agenda.

Comments (1)




Worst-class seating

Consumerist reports that airlines may continue to compress passengers ad lib:

Earlier this year, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said he would try to get federal regulators to come up with limits for airline seat size and spacing. But yesterday, his fellow senators shot down that effort.

Schumer’s legislation — introduced as an amendment to the bill reauthorizing the Federal Aviation Administration — would have required the FAA to set a minimum standard seat size for commercial airlines. The goal, said the senator, was to establish a hard line that the airlines could not cross in their effort to squeeze more passengers on to planes.

Existing seat sizes and spacing would remain in place, but any future changes would have to remain above whatever minimum the FAA set.

Schumer has said some fairly arguable things in his day, but I think he absolutely nailed this one:

“Over the last few decades, between the size of the seat and the distance between the seats, the flying public has lost half a foot of their space,” said Schumer before yesterday’s vote. “You would think that by cramming in more and more passengers on each flight, the airlines could lower their prices. Instead, several major airlines went in the other direction: They started charging for the extra inches and legroom that were once considered standard. So it practically costs you an arm and a leg just to have space for your arms and legs.”

There are, I suppose, some people who are willing to allow themselves to be rolled up like last year’s duvet cover to save a few bucks. I am not one of them.

Comments (1)




Forget Part One

I was spinning a graft of Cozy Cole’s two “Topsy” sides, “Topsy Part One” and “Topsy Part Two” — Part Two was the single for some reason — and it struck me that Part Two-ism is actually a fairly popular trope in popular music: while far more Part Ones than Part Twos charted, there are plenty of worthy Part Twos out there. (And inevitably Cozy would move from “Topsy” to “Turvy,” which also had two parts, with the second a bigger smash than the first.)

Originally, Gary Glitter recorded 15 minutes of “Rock and Roll”; eventually six minutes came out on a single, divided into Parts One and Two. Part One was the hit in France and the UK:

You of course already know Part Two, the side that became a hit in the States, in which the one word of consequence is “Hey.” (In fact, if you search for “Hey Song” on Wikipedia, you will get the deets on “Rock and Roll.”) Didn’t keep Glitter from playing it live, and occasionally saying something more than “Hey”:

But perhaps the most remarkable of these bifurcated hits came from a blind 12-year-old kid from Detroit. “Fingertips Part Two” was of course the big debut hit for Stevie Wonder, but hardly anyone (Roger Green possibly excepted) ever played Part One. No visuals here, but what the heck. This is great stuff, with Stevie doing his Hey Harmonica Man routine and playing the bongos, and if they hadn’t faded it out, it would have segued right into Part Two:

And if you happen to think “That’s some darn fine drumming,” thank Marvin Gaye. He was darn good at it.

Comments (2)




Quote of the week

“Blame it on the Baby Boomers,” says everyone except actual Baby Boomers.

Which of course is not true. An example, from Jack Baruth’s comment section:

My generation, the baby boomers, have created a generation of complete and utter ignoramuses convinced of their own intellectual and moral superiority.

Not that it’s particularly difficult to find actual Boomers with similar convictions.

I blame Tee-ball. I think that’s where it started, even before trophies for showing up. WTF do you learn about hitting a pitched baseball from hitting one off of a tee? It’s baseball, not golf.

Today I asked my son, my only son, Moshe, whom I love, who will be 32 this year and now has two children of his own, if his mother or I ever once did anything to boost his self esteem. He raised an eyebrow and said, “Of course not.”

Now that’s Grade-A parental guidance.

Comments (2)




Fark blurb of the week

Comments




Advice to the youngsters

Asked for advice by a recent grad who says he’s hauling in 60k a year after taxes but continues to occupy his parents’ basement, Bark M. comes up with an eminently sensible set of proposals:

  1. Move out from your parents’ house into a nice, upscale apartment for about $1200/month.
  2. Allocate about $400/month for groceries, and another $400/month for utilities.
  3. Get some silk sheets.
  4. Download Tinder.
  5. Spend lots of money on alcohol and dating. Get laid as much as possible. You’re only young and single once.
  6. Give yourself about $900/month to spend on a car, including insurance.
  7. Save a grand each month since an H-1B worker who lied about his certifications on his application will replace you at your tech job.

Some of these, I suspect, were delivered with tongue in cheek.

Comments (2)