So cold, this

One day Trini and I were talking post-grunge, and I asked her, goofily enough, “Is there a pre-post-grunge?” She gave that the snicker it deserved, departed for a moment, and returned with a few tracks by Breaking Benjamin, which she identified as a post-post-grunge band.

And which is now, apparently, an ex-band:

Breaking Benjamin has reached its breaking point.

The Wilkes-Barre band, which gained worldwide fame for alternative rock anthems focused mainly on affliction and adversity, has been torn apart by a feud between its namesake lead singer and two longtime bandmates, according to a trove of court documents obtained by The Citizens’ Voice.

The dispute, over a new recording of the band’s hit song “Blow Me Away,” erupted in May when lead singer Benjamin Burnley fired the bandmates, guitarist Aaron Fincke and bassist Mark Klepaski, via e-mail.

“Blow Me Away” has a weird history anyway. Recorded for the game Halo 2 in 2004, it was available only on an EP for several years. In 2010, for some reason, it was released as a single, and was added as a bonus track — labeled “Soundtrack Version” — to the Zune (!) version of the Dear Agony album.

Burnley’s dispute with his bandmates arose when, he said, they agreed to a remix of “Blow Me Away,” for which Disney’s Hollywood Records anted up $100,000, without telling him. The new version, billed as “featuring Valora” — more precisely, featuring Valora singer Sydnee Duran, also signed to Hollywood — is out right now as a single. (There’s no video yet, but there is a YouTube version; the un-Valora’ed Halo version is here.) Perhaps most annoying to Burnley: the imminent compilation Shallow Bay: The Best of Breaking Benjamin contains not the original “Blow Me Away,” but the remix.

I think I’m more annoyed that Shallow Bay doesn’t contain the song “Shallow Bay,” from their 2002 album Saturate. (Which contains Trini’s favorite BB song: “Polyamorous.”)

Fincke and Klepaski wanted everything aired in open court, but apparently the case is going to arbitration.

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Uptown revisited

True, this:

Uptown Theatre in Minneapolis

Previous Uptown Theatre (Minneapolis) hilarity here.

(Via FAILBlog’s WIN!)

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That’s your email there

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Car and Driver’s experience with MyFord Touch in their Explorer test vehicle (September ’11):

The system is often slow to respond or recognize inputs. Late in our evaluation, the touch screen froze. Disconnecting and reconnecting the car’s battery rebooted the system, at which point the screen displayed a Microsoft logo and the words, “Performing Scheduled Maintenance.”

Next question: Do you have to visit the dealer to obtain Service Pack 1, or is it going to download while you’re stuck on the freeway?

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Responsibility unclaimed

There’s only one thing worse than competing terrorist cells popping up to assert that yes, this was all their doing, pay no attention to those other guys, and that’s the deadly seriousness with which the Snooze Media treat those assertions, even when no doubt exists as to the identity of the perpetrators:

Did Edward R. Murrow ever say “An Army Air Force B-17 was shot down over Düsseldorf today. We’ll be back after these messages with who claimed responsibility”? No, he didn’t. And do you know why? Because he wasn’t a microcephalic hairspray-headed cretin whose entire world outside of Manhattan cocktail parties consisted of nothing but an endless globe-spanning daisy chain of identical luxury hotel rooms joined by a pressurized tube of first-class airliner cabins and the back seats of Cadillacs, that’s why, you plush-bottomed yahoo.

This is, incidentally, why we’re not even slightly effective as imperialists: we claim to care about such things. Evidently the War College is no longer offering Subjugation 101.

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A hell of an idea

A fellow named Finrod, given to commenting at The Other McCain and a few other places, left this parenthetical remark at the end of a comment:

By the way, one of my hopeless pet causes is to change the interstate number of the DC Beltway from I-495 to I-666.

Since the Beltway actually connects with Interstate 66, this would be at least somewhat legit, or at least more so than, say, California’s Interstate 238.

Put me down in favor of this change.

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Is there a prescription-strength sunscreen?

Yes, it’s been a long, long stay inside this Bessemer-converter simulation they’ve been calling a “heat dome,” and just when I was adding a couple more points to my Despair Quotient, I got a little surprise from the American Association for Nude Recreation: one of those prescription-savings cards that is definitely Not Insurance, nosiree.

Now this is a fairly common “membership benefit” offered by lots of organizations, and it’s not like I’ve never seen one before. Still: in the age of the four-dollar generic, are these things even useful anymore?

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Zooeypalooza 11!

And the letters keep coming in: “Where the hell is the Zooeypalooza?”

Right here:

Zooeypalooza 11!

Clickage, you may rest assured, bringeth embiggenment.

Previous Paloozas: ZP 1, ZP 2, ZP 3, ZP 4, ZP 5, ZP 6, ZP 7, ZP 8, ZP 9, ZP 10.

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This should get a rise out of someone

Sexist church sign

To quote Adrienne Gusoff: “Any woman who thinks the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach is aiming about 10 inches too high.”

Different level of Buncombe, perhaps?

(Via FAIL Blog.)

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Meanwhile at the House of Duh

I suppose it takes the Boston Globe — which is, after all, owned by The New York Times Company — to consider this revelation newsworthy:

There are signs that hoarders have been busy. Sales of standard incandescent bulbs are up by 10 to 20 percent over a year ago at The Home Depot, according to the chain’s chief bulb buyer. A 2010 survey by Osram Sylvania, the Danvers-based light bulb maker, found that 13 percent of consumers plan to stockpile. At Lucia Lighting & Design in Lynn, some customers are trying to figure out how many incandescents constitute a lifetime supply.

As Glenn Reynolds would say, “There’s still time to stock up!”

Disclosure: I had a CFL fail Wednesday night after eighteen months of presumably-faithful service. An identical fixture four feet away has a Real Bulb (60-watt), now six years old. Subtract the cost of the CFL from the cost of the extra energy used by proper lighting, and I have enough to pay for the gas to drive to the city’s hazmat-disposal unit. (What, you think they allow these things on the bus?)

Bonus excellent Fark blurb: “The most effective government stimulus yet — hoarders have increased sales of incandescent light bulbs by 20%”. Yep.

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The other, other white meat

“Save a soybean, eat a vegan,” Tam snarked, and one of her high-quality commenters (one Global Village Idiot) came up with this idea, which was subsequently deemed worthy of a bumper sticker:

Eloi: It's What's For Dinner

Just wanted to see what it might look like, that’s all.

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None more Black

In the regular Rebecca Black slot this Friday, we are pleased, or appalled, to present a new item from ARK Music Factory, featuring someone even younger and even more blatantly Auto-Tuned. Ladies and germs, please welcome Madison Bray, age nine.

This was running about nine dislikes for every like last night on YouTube, so there’s that much in common with “Friday.” Otherwise — well, if I thought it had any merit I’d have embedded it.

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By any other name would cost as much

There’s been a little bit of carping lately regarding the transmogrification of The Arena Formerly Known As The Ford Center. The objections vary, but they tend to fall into two general areas: (1) Cheasapeake Energy’s chairman, Aubrey McClendon, is a founding partner of the Oklahoma City Thunder and owns a portion of the team, and he shouldn’t be committing corporate funds to something that might conceivably accrue to his personal benefit; (2) the city of Oklahoma City, which owns the facility, isn’t making all that much from the sale of the naming rights to CHK.

The latter point is pretty irrelevant, since the city’s lease to the team specifies exactly who gets to sell the naming rights — the team — and the amount of the city’s cut of the proceeds. As for the former, well, the idea is to raise Cheaspeake’s profile, not McClendon’s, and frankly, Aubrey’s probably anxious for a little more anonymity.

Marginally more interesting than the objections, at least to me, was the actual price of those rights:

The 12-year naming rights agreement has an initial annual cost of $3.0 million with a 3.0% annual escalation.

So we’re talking close to $40 million in one of the smaller NBA markets. Compare that to what is paid in the Bigger Leagues:

The Oakland Coliseum, home stadium of the Raiders and the A’s, will be renamed Coliseum. The six-year naming-rights deal will cost the Utah-based e-tailer “a modest $7.2 million,” reports the New York Times baseball blog, Bats.

Oh, and there’s this one minor detail:

Overstock is rebranding itself as (.co is a top-level domain that’s become a popular alternative to .com), and the company retains the right to rename the Coliseum.

Which they did, in June. Locals, unsurprisingly, still call it simply the Coliseum; they weren’t impressed by all the nomenclature adjustments across the bay at Candle3Monsterstick Park. This may or may not explain the bargain price paid by the yocos at

And just yesterday, Nancy Friedman, from whom I borrowed that Oakland story, tweeted this:

I hope they remodel Oakland’s Coliseum. Then it could be a rococo O.coCo.

Suddenly all the upcoming ‘Peake jokes don’t seem so horrible.

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There’s a screensaver for recess

Jennifer’s Weebot is attending one of those newfangled Virtual Schools this fall. How does this affect the traditional back-to-school frenzy? Not so much, really:

I’ve been frantically gathering the appropriate paperwork, including the silly things. (Really, you need an immunization record for a virtual school? And yet, they don’t need to verify that the anti-virus software on his PC is up to date.) Since they are still part of the public school system, they require all the same documentation.

Maybe we shouldn’t say anything out loud about AV software, lest they decide to require a specific package next school year.

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Don’t touch our staff

Former IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn has evidently read Coffee, Tea or Me? too many times:

Air France ruled that only male cabin crew were allowed to serve Dominique Strauss-Kahn, currently fighting accusations he attempted to rape a New York hotel maid.

The claim was reported Thursday by Le Parisien newspaper, which also says lawyers for the former IMF chief’s alleged victim, Nafissatou Diallo, are soliciting testimony from female flight attendants at the national carrier, who may have been subjected to inappropriate behavior by the Frenchman.

The lawyers already received two accounts from disgruntled staff, along with an anonymous letter detailing the Air France male-only order, the report said.

Strauss-Kahn is due back in New York to face charges in the Diallo case on the 23rd. It’s just too bad he can’t take the bus.

(Via Fausta Wertz.)

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There has to be a twist

I was going to say “He gives them no quarter,” but obviously he does:

(Via Fark.)

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