Things you should be looking at.

Monday, December 31, 2007

Hilarity of Indian Media

Thanks to E. Parker for pointing out these gems of entertaining awfulness:

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Death Star Cafeteria

Audio by Eddie Izzard, animation via Lego

I also enjoyed Cake or Death.

Thanks for sending this my way, James. :)

All About Hebonics

From my brother Andrew:

All About Hebonics (author unknown)

The New York City Public Schools System has officially declared Jewish English, now dubbed Hebonics, as a second language. Backers of the move say the city schools are the first in the nation to recognize Hebonics as a valid language and a significant attribute of American culture.

According to Howard Ashland, linguistics professor at Brooklyn College and renowned Hebonics scholar, the sentence structure of Hebonics derives from middle and eastern European language patterns, as well as Yiddish.

Professor Shulman explains, "In Hebonics, the response to any question is usually another qu estion with a complaint that is either implied or stated. Thus 'How are you?' may be answered, 'How should I be, with my bad feet?' '' Shulman says that Hebonics is a superb linguistic vehicle for expressing sarcasm or skepticism. An example is the repetition of a word with "sh" or "shm" at the beginning: "Mountains, shmountains. Stay away. You should want a nosebleed?"

Another Hebonics pattern is moving the subject of a sentence to the end, with its pronoun at the beginning: "It's beautiful, that dress." Shulman says one also sees the Hebonics verb moved to the end of the sentence. Thus the response to a remark such as "He's slow as a Turtle," could be: "Turtle, shmurtle! Like a fly in Vaseline he walks."

Shulman provided the following examples from his best-selling textbook, ''Switched-On Hebonics'':

Question: "What time is it?"
English answer: "Sorry, I don't know."
Hebonic response: "What am I, a cloc k?"

Remark: "I hope things turn out okay."
English answer: "Thanks."
Hebonic response: "I should be so lucky!"

Remark: "Hurry up. Dinner's ready."
English answer: "Be right there."
Hebonic response: "Alright already, I'm coming. What's with the 'hurry' business? Is there a fire?"

Remark: "I like the tie you gave me; I wear it all the time."
English answer: "Glad you like it."
Hebonic response: "So what's the matter; you don't like the other ties I gave you?"

Remark: "Sarah and I are engaged."
English answer: "Congratulations!"
Hebonic response: "She could stand to lose a few pounds."

Question: "Would you like to go riding with us?"
English answer: "Just say when."
Hebonic response: "Riding, shmiding! Do I look like a cowboy?"

To the guest of honor at a birthday party:
English answer: "Happy birthday."
Hebonic response: "A year smarter you should become."

Remark: "A beautiful day."
English answer: "Sure is."
Hebonic response: "So the sun is out; what else is new?"

Answering a phone call from a son:
English answer: "It's been a while since you called."
Hebonic response: "You didn't wonder if I'm dead already?"

Sunday, December 23, 2007

God Star Chili

Took this in Cincinnati this evening.

For those not from around these parts: This area has two major chains of Chili restaurants, Skyline and Gold Star.

We visit these parts every X-mas. I have Chili whenever we visit these parts. I may be the only person who associates X-mas with Chili and three-ways.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

End of the World as We Know It

...and Dubya feels fine.

Impressive bit of editing.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

If you like Philip K. Dick or R. Crumb...'ll want to go read this.

Thanks, Joel M.!

Bloomington, MN: WTF?


A "meditation room" at Normandale Community College, a 9,200-student public institution in Bloomington apparently serves only one faith, and an ugly version of it.

Religion is whacky stuff that I'm generally opposed to (regardless of the particular flavor of lunacy), but I can't believe a public instituion allows this:

A row of chest-high barriers splits the room into sex-segregated sections.

In the smaller, enclosed area for women sits a pile of shawls and head-coverings. Literature titled "Hijaab [covering] and Modesty" was prominently placed there, instructing women on proper Islamic behavior.

They should cover their faces and stay at home, it said, and their speech should not "be such that it is heard."

"Enter into Islaam completely and accept all the rulings of Islaam," the tract read in part.

"It should not be that you accept what entertains your desires and leave what opposes your desires; this is from the manners of the Jews."

"[T]he Jews and the Christians" are described as "the enemies of Allaah's religion." The document adds: "Remember that you will never succeed while you follow these people."

At a public community college. WTF?

It seems the ACLU has problems with this too.

Thanks for the heads-up, Andrew.

Monday, December 17, 2007

R.A. Heinlein on "This I Believe"

The cynic in me wants to call Robert Heinlein a sucker for Our Noble, Essential Decency, an essay written and recorded for This I Believe in the 1950s...but I know that Heinlein was no sucker. I'd like to believe in the decency of the majority of humankind. I don't, but I'd like to. Go read the essay or click play on the player below to listen to Heinlein read it.

Thanks for the heads-up, Andrew.

X-Mas: Straight No Chaser

I'm a grinch and I love this.

Thank you, Abigail!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

World War Z

I've been trying to get back in the habit of reading fiction by reading a little bit before I go to sleep at night. My friend Philip brought me multiple books to read while I was in the hospital, but I was unable to read novels while on the pain meds- so I'm just catching up on those now.

One of the books Philip gave me was World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War. I'm surprised to find that I really, really like it. It is structured like a well-oragnized series of interviews with survivors of the Zombie war. The level of detail author Max Brooks goes into in how the world reacts to a Zombie plague is fantastic and very, very smart.

I didn't always like Zombie fiction, but E. Parker got me to watch some classic Zombie flicks and I enjoyed 28 Days Later (as well as 28 Weeks Later, though not quite as much). What most fascinates about all of these isn't the horror of bloody, slouching, you-eating monsters that used to be people. What fascinates is the guessing at what shape reactions would take. What'd happen to law, government, the military, the economy? How reasonably could such a plague be contained?

The book is loads of fun. Thanks, Philip!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Monday, December 10, 2007

I talk funny

Really, I've been told repeatedly that I talk funny. A few times in downtown Minneapolis, I was asked what *country* I was from. I guess I decided that this was a result of being raised by New Yorkers in southern Minnesota, then going to theatre school where the4y try to drive regionalisms out of one's speaking habits. I'm told here in upstate NY that I talk funny, too.

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Inland North

You may think you speak "Standard English straight out of the dictionary" but when you step away from the Great Lakes you get asked annoying questions like "Are you from Wisconsin?" or "Are you from Chicago?" Chances are you call carbonated drinks "pop."

The Midland
The Northeast
The South
North Central
The West
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

How about you? The quiz takes a maximum of 3 minutes to complete.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Ron Paul vs. RuPaul

For Wendy: This is Ron Paul, libertarianish Republican Candidate for president of these here YEWnighted States.

This is RuPaul, a cross-dressing footnote in pop culture history
They are not, as far as is known, related.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007