Busy, busy, Busy

Billy De Wolfe, who died in 1974, never met Busy Philipps, who was born in 1979, but I suspect he wouldn’t be able to avoid the catchphrase that became associated with his name, had he ever seen her:

Busy Philipps

Incidentally, Busy has a daughter named Birdie, who’s two and a half.

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Clutch-adverse

A Steven Lang observation on metropolitan Atlanta:

This area may well be the most slushbox oriented place in America. No one knows how to drive a stick out here unless they’re from North Georgia or a non-native.

Which drew this comment:

Driving a stick shift in Metro Atlanta gets really tiresome. Try it on I-75, 85 or 285 in rush hour sometime.

I suspect even driving an automatic around there is fatiguing. (In World Tour ’07, I came up I-85 as far as Newnan, but ducked down state roads through Senoia and Griffin the next day before returning to superslabdom.)

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Neither shalt thou gawk

And so it was that the deacon found himself in an uncomfortable position. She was easily within his field of vision, but he dared not look:

[H]e wanted to look at her, but he did not. No, it would have been a sin to look at her. So he gritted his teeth and made damn sure his eyes did not touch her alluring form.

This is a half-step beyond my own avoidance technique: I end up sneaking the glance, which I then blame on hormonal action, and then spend the next several minutes looking in every other direction and berating myself for a weakness of the flesh.

Racer X, from whom I poached the story of the deacon, sees no point in that sort of behavior:

Lust is when you let your desires completely take control of your reason, and you begin doing things that harm yourself and others in pursuit of that lust. The strange fact of traditional Christian teaching is that it does not take into consideration that most women enjoy being “lusted” after, if you take that to mean they enjoy the desires of a virile, masculine man who is not afraid to be a man. Women dislike prudish men. In fact, I have heard many women say that they find the sight of men preaching about chastity a little weird and creepy.

I suspect it reaches an apex of weirdness and/or creepiness right about the point where the guy goes into “Do as I say, not as I do” mode.

Still, I suggest that there are more working definitions of “prudish” than there are actual prudes: the word, over the years, has become more dismissively pejorative than actually descriptive.

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Strange search-engine queries (261)

By now, you know how this works: we saunter up to the Big Box O’ Server Logs, poke about therein for several moments, and then toss up anything from which we have even the slightest chance of getting a chuckle.

how hard isit to change transmission on 94 ford probe:  If you have to ask, it’s beyond your capacity.

some crazy bitch is suing P. Diddy for $1 trillion. $900 billion for child support and $100 billion for loss of income. She claims he is responsible for 9/11, stole a poker chip from her worth 100 zillion dollars and broke one of her childrens legs:  On the other hand, Diddy clearly had nothing to do with a transmission failure in a ’94 Ford Probe.

do I have to get a permit to post political signs in oklahoma city:  You know, I don’t think anyone’s ever asked that before; they just plop the signs into the ground and run like hell.

What does 5320 mean in oklahoma:  It’s the year we finally get rid of 3.2 beer.

nymphomaniacs physical features:  Mostly, a look of impatience.

secret asian men fantasize about white women:  Well, maybe if they look impatient.

what is united nudes revenue stream:  It’s my understanding that people will pay to see other people with their clothes off. Who knew?

what is doheny in dead man’s curve:  It’s where he passed me and I started to swerve. That’s pretty much the last thing I remember, Doc.

herman’s hermits henry the 8th chords resemble colonel bogey march:  Second ball, same as them all.

do men normally get erections during a brazilian bikini wax:  Depends. Are they the waxer, the waxee, or just a spectator?

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Threshold of pain

Ginger at I Own The World has assembled a collection of “Idiotic Shoes,” and it’s a case of truth in advertising: they’re all comfortably (well, some of them uncomfortably) nestled on the preposterous side of the spectrum.

shoes on nailsSmitty sent me the link, noting: “No idea what to make of this.” I figure it’s just a manifestation of the contemporary cultural imperative to the effect that Different Is Good (Except For [name of currently-disfavored group or idea]).

Picking Worst of Breed wasn’t easy, but I finally settled on this one. It simply looks excruciatingly painful; its component parts seem unworthy — for all I know, those may be exquisite crystals on the upper, but the heels seem to be ordinary 16d nails straight out of Ace Hardware — and its overall effect is something along the lines of “I wear this with a hair shirt made of steel wool.” Go cry, emo girl.

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Let’s get that NetWare Bindery running

Laptops in the schools? Why not? Well, not if you’re going to do this:

[Teacher Becki] McMickle said, “The way that society is going and with our future, so many things are computer-based; being able to type, WordPerfect, things like that.”

WordPerfect? Wow. Get those kids some AOL disks, pronto.

(This happened in Greater Falls.)

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Touched by the Heat

You have to figure that the national TV audience, at least, was pleased with this game. Neither of the warring physical phenomena ever suggested for a moment that this was going to be a blowout, and it wasn’t. But in the end, Miami had just a hair more clutchiness than Oklahoma City, and the Heat put together a 6-2 run at the end to win it by five, 108-103.

There was some rumbling earlier — I blame John Rohde — to the effect that Miami’s Big Three might be down to a Big One, both Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade suffering from various ailments. Didn’t happen. Wade and Bosh started, and neither of them seemed to be suffering in the least: Wade had 32 points, Bosh 20, and that other guy turned in a double-double: 23 points, 13 assists. If you were expecting LeBron to play Ball Hog today, you were at least as far off base as Rohde.

The Thunder were out of position rather a lot in the fourth quarter: it was tied 85-all after three, but Miami’s execution in the final frame, especially in the final minute, settled the matter. OKC’s Big Three actually outscored Miami’s — Kevin Durant had 33 points, Jeff Green 23, Russell Westbrook 20, and all posted double-doubles — and Heat expat Daequan Cook was good for 13 off the bench, but the absence of Thabo Sefolosha’s defense was painful at times. Cook and James Harden did what they could, but how do you defend D-Wade and LeBron and Bosh? It can be done, but today it wasn’t.

Once the snow clears, the Hornets arrive. If there’s anything to that “resilience” business, the Thunder should give them some grief. If not, well, it’s going to be a cold Wednesday night in the Blunderdome.

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A link that just makes sense

This turned up on Yahoo! Answers:

doesn’t WordPress (blog) have a sign up page?

I went out to wordpress.com, found a big-ass orange button that says “Sign up now,” and duly reported the results to the questioner.

As it happens, said button goes to this link: http://wordpress.com/signup/?ref=bigassorange.

Now that’s tracking.

Disclosure: I keep my backup blog at wordpress.com, but I don’t get anything for referring anyone.

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We’re only trying to get us some peace

So you’ve found yourself a time machine. What do you do with it? If you said “Do something about Hitler,” you’re probably in the majority, but you’re not going to be in Mark Waters’ time-travel film:

According to Variety, Waters will direct Get Back, a time traveling film that will show just how far a pair of fans will go to keep their favorite band together.

The trade reports that the story of Get Back centers on two die hard Beatles fans, who discover a time machine and decide to prevent the meeting of John Lennon and Yoko Ono. They feel that their relationship is what caused the group to break up and they want to prevent it from ever happening. The screenplay was written by Chris McCoy.

Pablo Fanque rates this idea only “Fair.”

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It had to happen

Sanrio and Sephora have collaborated, kinda sorta, on a new cosmetic line, which presumably may help you look like this:

Model for Hello Kitty by Sephora

Yes, it’s the ubiquitous Hello Kitty, with the standard Signature Fragrance (1.7 ounces, $55, which sounds pricey but which is a heck of a lot cheaper than the stuff I wear), various goodies for your face, and typical accessories.

Although I question the legitimacy of a Hello Kitty lip gloss. I mean, Hello Kitty doesn’t even have lips.

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Fark blurb of the week

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Pander express

If Americans are united in anything, it’s in their desire for free stuff. You can’t go two pages in the computer section of Yahoo! Answers without seeing someone ask how they can get so-and-so “totally free” and/or “without downloading anything.” (This latter usually brands the asker as a kid who doesn’t have admin privileges on the family desktop.) Politicians, not surprisingly, have built entire empires out of concealing the price of “free” stuff.

Now comes word that Facebook is using your precious personal information for, OMG, commercial purposes. You or I will probably react this way: “Well, duh.” For the rest of the world, Tam has the proper response:

What did you think was going to pay for this futuristic new way to stay in touch with your friends and family, to keep everyone you know updated on your every meal and movie and micturition? Did you think some kind philanthropist had donated the code and the server space and the bandwidth out of the kindness of his heart?

Wait ’til they find out that should they micturate on a rug in this fair city, they must pay compensation.

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Above his pay grade

Motor Trend’s Frank Markus introduces a luxoboat comparo (3/11) with a snide reference to how purchase of these is made possible by the extension of the Bush tax cuts:

We hear the extension saves you rich folks $103,535 per million of annual taxable income. What better economic stimulus for you to spend it on than a shiny replacement for that tired old barge you’ve been driving since the credit-party music stopped?

Lighten up, Frank. This is an extension of an existing cut: nobody is getting an extra $103,535 over and above last year. Unless, of course, you’re prepared to argue that the government has first claim on someone’s earnings, in which case I’m prepared to argue that ripping my subscription-renewal form in two — which I did on Thursday before I even read this piece — was one of the smarter things I did this week.

But he goes on:

Restraint is still called for. Pop for a V-12 and your Tea Party pals will tsk disapprovingly at your liberal-elite profligacy. Better to demonstrate some “shared sacrifice.”

Better still to pay attention. I don’t know what kind of quasi-rightist nimrods Markus thinks he’s BFFs with (if any) in L.A., but my Tea Party pals, such as they are, believe you should drive whatever you damn well please, and if it costs you a ton in fuel costs, so be it.

And let’s face it: were it not for those horrid upper-income individuals who can actually buy those luxoboats, poor Frank Markus would be spending his days sliding around skidpads, not in 7-series Bimmers, but in Nissan Versas and such. Farging ingrate.

Addendum: See also this deserved denunciation of a whole phalanx of idiots.

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The time traveler’s mix

“It’s almost as if a thing must be marred by the past for it to matter,” says Zan McQuade:

You surround yourself with the sounds of the past, collected in the albums that lean against the wall, or tucked away as data on our computers. (Don’t we all try to leave on that jetplane.) The Byrds. Carole King. Al Bowlly. Petula Clark and Sam Cooke. The “when” is not important; all of it is just the right time to disappear to, just for a while.

Poor old Al Bowlly. He had had the vocal versatility of Bing Crosby, but damage to his throat eventually killed his career, and the Luftwaffe killed him outright in the Blitz.

You spend most of your waking hours trying to travel back in time. You obviously have yet to succeed, though you’re convinced you’ve come close. Glimpsed around the corner of another era. Are you lifting a dress off the rack in a vintage shop or touching the sleeve of a woman in 1959? If you close your eyes tight enough, are you listening to a recording of an audience clapping in a field in 1974, or are you in a field? Is it 1974?

Imagine yourself in 2005, reading this for the first time:

[T]he past never goes away. We have a path, a timeline, from which we do not deviate, but so does everything else. What we see as the present is simply the intersection of all those timelines: our own, those of our friends and families, the homes in which we live, the forests that were supplanted by the cities that now contain most of those homes. I’m not saying it’s possible to walk up my street and suddenly jump back into 1948 — the first Honda or Toyota you see would likely catch you in mid-jump and send you back where you came from — but I am saying that an awful lot of 1948 remains.

Were it actually possible to make the jump — well, see Jack Finney’s Time and Again, or Richard Matheson’s Bid Time Return. (The latter you may remember as Jeannot Szwarc’s 1980 film Somewhere in Time, in which Christopher Reeve departs the present and almost ends up with Jane Seymour in 1912.)

“Nothing dies unless it is forgotten completely,” says McQuade. Remind me to remember that.

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Quote of the week

Ric Locke, on that “Sputnik” frippery:

The nomenklatura were concerned that the weakness of the Soviet economy not become apparent, so they concentrated on visible achievements — rocket technology as exemplified by ICBMs and, yes, Sputnik, providing aid to their Fraternal Socialist Brethren such as Castro, and building a formidable military presence. Resources devoted to those ends had to be diverted from the weak economy, which weakened it further. The important fact about the American space program was not that it caught up to and exceeded Soviet capability; it was that the Americans did it out of pocket change — expenditures on Mercury, Apollo, etc., were huge in absolute numbers, but never required diversion of significant scarce resources from the consumer economy to support them. The same was true across the board. The United States could build aircraft carriers and ICBMs, deploy hundreds of thousands of troops and their equipment to Viet Nam, and send high-flying planes to take pictures of the Rodina, and suffer at worst some inflation and market distortion. The USSR could achieve much less than that, and that only by prying the last handful of grain from the most miserable peasant.

Certainly the weakness of the American economy is not apparent to the administration: every single piece of bad news is labeled as “unexpected.” Of course, there’s one major difference between the Moscow that was and the Washington that is: today, we have both nomenklatura and czars.

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I refuse to call this “Everybody beats the Wiz”

Herb Stein once said that if something can’t go on forever, it won’t. You have to figure that the Washington Wizards would win a road game eventually, and early in the second overtime (!), it looked like they were going to. Kevin Durant then went into I Don’t Think So mode, running off ten points in five minutes, and the Thunder sent the Wiz away unhappy, 124-117.

The Wizards did bring plenty of offense: JaVale McGee was a no-show, but all five Washington starters rolled up double figures, and both John Wall (13 points, 10 assists) and Trevor Booker (21 points, 12 rebounds) earned double-doubles. Nick Young had a formidable 32 points; Rashard Lewis had twenty. And the Wiz know their ball control: they gave up only seven turnovers in 58 minutes.

But Durant/Westbrook Game Finishers, Inc. were not going to be denied. Russell racked up yet another triple-double (35 points, 13 boards, 13 dimes), and KD finished with 40 points. Jeff Green (remember him?) came up with a double-double (13 points, 12 boards). And Scott Brooks, much to his dismay, had to tweak the rotation: Thabo Sefolosha got banged up at the very end of the Minnesota game Wednesday, and James Harden was drafted to start at the two. This meant minutes for Daequan Cook, especially after Harden fouled out, and Cook came up with nine points (three treys) and five rebounds. The Thunder were not too swift with the long ball otherwise (5-21), and they uncharacteristically bricked ten free throws, but they shot over 49 percent and outrebounded the Wizards 55-43.

So yet another cardiac event for OKC, in front of a sellout crowd (the 20th of the year) at the We’ll Put Up The Sign Later Arena. The Sunday matinee against the Heat, of course, has been sold out since LeBron was in high school, or so it seems. And Herb Stein has to wait a while before we update his accuracy record, which now stands at several zillion to 0.

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