Wednesday, March 31, 2010

a little sean ass.

you're welcome!

Is that Mark Mangino back there?

Every single person in this video would be funny on their own. I particularly like the guitar player.

Double time.

Michael Buble Being Stalked by a Velociraptor

Who is Michael Buble?

Smells like Nirvana

I like it when people splice the original music videos into videos for the Weird Al polkas.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tuesdays with Ted

Ted rolled lazily across the bear skin rug, not quite awake but no longer asleep. Despite the roaring wind outside, he was warm -- hot, even. A sheen of sweat covered his bare chest. The stove burned hot and bright. Ted was alone in the tent.

He picked up one of the heavy blankets from the wooden basket and wrapped it haphazardly around his shoulders. Stepping out of the tent flap, the wind bit through it, pouring ice cold air against his skin.

But he didn't notice. Arghun sat on the log where they had cooked last night, her back to the tent. Despite the cold, she wore only her thin wool undershirt. Ted couldn't see her face, but he knew something was wrong.

"Günaydin, my love," he said, putting his left hand on her shoulder while pulling his blanket tighter with the right. "Aren't you cold?"

Arghun ignored his question. "Oh, Batachikhan," she barely whispered in an Uyghur dialect. "It's coming now. Can't you feel it?"

Ted didn't answer. He only pressed closer against Arghun's back, both looking out over the steppes. For the first time since he was awake, Ted noticed the cold, and shivered.

heavy doobies

so many questions.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Now, I had been taught in school that scurvy had been conquered in 1747, when the Scottish physician James Lind proved in one of the first controlled medical experiments that citrus fruits were an effective cure for the disease. From that point on, we were told, the Royal Navy had required a daily dose of lime juice to be mixed in with sailors’ grog, and scurvy ceased to be a problem on long ocean voyages.

But here was a Royal Navy surgeon in 1911 apparently ignorant of what caused the disease, or how to cure it. Somehow a highly-trained group of scientists at the start of the 20th century knew less about scurvy than the average sea captain in Napoleonic times. Scott left a base abundantly stocked with fresh meat, fruits, apples, and lime juice, and headed out on the ice for five months with no protection against scurvy, all the while confident he was not at risk. What happened?
Scott and Scurvy

Friday, March 26, 2010

Dog attacks police car

Two links

Obsolete jobs. Lector sounds like a cool job.

Holy smokes, Batman.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Ideological rankings of occupations

Ideological rankings of occupational categories

our truest ally against the orca menace

As the killer whales moved in, the plucky pinniped leapt on to the vast ribbed belly of a humpback, and nestled in the animal's armpit. Not only that, but when a wave threatened to return the seal to danger, the humpback used its massive flipper (at five metres, the longest in the animal kingdom) to nudge it back on.
Whales save seal from orcas

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Ben Folds on the internet

The original he is oding to:

Monday, March 22, 2010

Lessons from Doom

On why Doom and its progeny still feel so playable compared to modern first-person shooters; the point about agility and maneuverability as defense is key, I think.

Flash Game to Start the Week

Blosics 2, awesome.

Sunday, March 21, 2010


"And after the rains... peppers!"
-Dr. Pepper

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Friday, March 19, 2010

Congressional representation

Imagine a chamber in which senators were elected by different income brackets -- with two senators representing the poorest 2 percent of the electorate, two senators representing the richest 2 percent and so on.

Based on Census Bureau data, five senators would represent Americans earning between $100,000 and $1 million individually per year, with a single senator working on behalf of the millionaires (technically, it would be two-tenths of a senator). Eight senators would represent Americans with no income. Sixteen would represent Americans who make less than $10,000 a year, an amount well below the federal poverty line for families. The bulk of the senators would work on behalf of the middle class, with 34 representing Americans making $30,000 to $80,000 per year.

Imagine trying to convince someone -- Michael Bloomberg, perhaps? -- to be the lonely senator representing the richest percentile. And what if the senators were apportioned according to jobs figures? This year, the unemployed would have gained two seats. Think of the deals that would be made to attract that bloc!

Or how about if senators represented particular demographic groups, based on gender and race? White women would elect the biggest group of senators -- 37 of them, though only 38 women have ever served in the Senate, with 17 currently in office. White men would have 36 seats. Black women, Hispanic women and Hispanic men would have six each; black men five; and Asian women and men two each.
What if senators represented people by income or race, not state?

Did anyone else get their census form yet?

I did!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Jogging, bursting into deafening roars every 5 seconds.

Finished a 6 course dinner in under 10 minutes. How's that to start the morning.
-the rarely updated, but still fun, Fake Michael Bay on Twitter

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Saturday, March 13, 2010

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

Jonathan "Jon" Cold (Steven Seagal) is a former "foreigner," or deep cover operative, who now works as a freelance agent who is frequently commissioned to deliver high-risk packages.

As Jon prepares for his father's funeral, Alexander Marquet (Philip Dunbar) asks him to take on an assignment. Jon is keen to leave the business, but he reluctantly accepts the job.

His task is to take a mysterious package from France to a wealthy man in Germany. But Jon will soon find that there are a lot of people who are determined to prevent him from doing so. Jon is accompanied by Dunoir (Max Ryan) to a farmhouse to pick up the package, and they are attacked by assassins.

Jon fights them off and decides to continue with the assignment. Leaving Dunoir behind in France, Jon heads for his father Jackson's memorial service in Warsaw, Poland, and Jon meets up with his brother Sean (Jeffrey Pierce) before continuing on to Germany.

The package turns out to contain a black box flight recorder from an aircraft that had been suspiciously downed, and the recipient -- sinister industrialist Jerome Van Aken (Harry Van Gorkum) -- has a vested interest in.

Once he arrives in Germany, Jon discovers that he is being pursued by various agents and assassins, while Van Aken's wife Meredith (Anna-Louise Plowman) and CIA spook Jared Olyphant (Gary Raymond) also seem to want to get hold of the package.
The Foreigner (2003)

Friday, March 12, 2010

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

I asked nine different people (mainly young) what the word meant, and although their answers were not identical, the following conclusions can be drawn: firstly, laowai carries no particular negative or positive connotations, and secondly, the word is only a noun and not a form of address. That means that saying "Hello laowai" is akin to saying "Hello foreigner" in English (would you ever say that to a tourist?), not "Hello sir/madam".

What my informants couldn't reliably tell me was why the word begins with "old". After pausing to think, several of them pointed out that this word is used in some dialects (particularly the Beijing dialect) as a familiar form of address. For example, a man with the surname Wang might be called "Old Wang" by his friends. But even if there is some connection between this usage and the word laowai, it is clearly not a direct link since laowai is neither a form of address nor an indicator of familiarity. There are in fact numerous colloquial terms beginning with lao that have negative meanings (such as laotouzi in the story above), and some people believe that laowai had a derogatory meaning when it was first coined. But this sort of speculation is hard to verify, and doesn't have much impact on the modern meaning and usage of the word.
Seven Ways to Say 'Foreigner'

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

Thursday, March 11, 2010

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

Finding a partner. If you are someone who is really interested in marrying someone of a totally different culture and country of citizenship, then you may want to venture on a trip to a foreign land. Although you could probably meet someone in your own country who came from a different country or culture, it is highly likely that there would still be some form of traveling involved. This is because there may be some situations or laws and ordinances--depending on the country of origin of your partner--that can only permit marriage if you travel to the foreign land. Also, if you are marrying someone with strict family and cultural upbringing, it may be necessary to ask for the parents' blessings in person.
How to Marry a Foreigner

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

If someone had told me that in August of 1981, I'd state that a Foreigner song with a scorching Junior Walker sax break might be the best damned car-radio single of the summer, I'd have advised him to ease up on the black beauties. But "Urgent" is terrific. (Considering these guys' pallid output over the years, how'd they ever convince Walker to get involved?) I'm not trying to be nasty, yet I've always thought that Foreigner was a group worth ignoring rather than criticizing. Their earlier hits, "Cold as Ice," "Dirty White Boy" and "Double Vision," hold up as reasonably good rockers in the Bad Company-Van Halen vein, but they're not nearly as neat as the quality stuff on Bad Company's first two albums. And all of the above bands pale in comparison to those they struggle to imitate: Free and vintage Led Zeppelin.

Lou Gramm is no Paul Rodgers or Robert Plant (which might be just as well these days), yet he sings the hell out of "Urgent," a metallic, predatory confessional about sexual obsession, steeped in steamy nocturnal cravings. The instrumentation is crisp and spare, and Walker punctuates the cynical seductive frenzy like the master that he is, cutting loose at the moment the sap is spurting with a rippling solo that ranks with his finest work.

How Foreigner managed to crank out such a marvelous backseat anthem and then sink into utter mediocrity on the rest of 4 is mildly intriguing, but – shrug – what are you gonna do? I mean, without Gramm's vocals, there's nothing to distinguish the group's sound from that of a dozen other middling-to-hard rock acts. Indeed, "Break It Up" sounds like a bar band imitating Queen, 10cc and, only incidentally, Foreigner.
From Rolling Stone's review of 4

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

3E presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

Such undisguised bitterness pervades Double Vision, and the record's only good moments arise from spurts of tight ensemble playing. But that's the least we could expect from such grizzled veterans. And songs like "Blue Morning, Blue Day" and "You're All I Am" do gratify in pleasantly odd ways. The surprise influence in this respect is the Beatles: Gramm's McCartney-like coo on "Blue Morning, Blue Day" is charming, while "Love Has Taken Its Toll" surges with a Revolver-era chorus--all snap and cleverness--as the guitars of Jones and Ed Gagliardi toss off a kinetic George Harrison/Paul McCartney blend.

But ultimately the group's skill is as mechanical as Mick Jones' paranoid misogyny. An instrumental is normally intended to show off a band's chops and smarts, yet the one provided here, "Tramontane," is puffy, quasi-ominous fluff, relying too heavily on Ian McDonald's spook-house organ effects. The tune's tense chords build and build but never break, and the accumulated suspense simply fades away.

What is most dispiriting about Foreigner is its patent lack of creative ambition. Not for an instant do we sense that these musicians are pushing themselves or trying to use their expertise to concoct something they find exciting. The emotions and motives asserted in their music are, when not just plain unbelievable, turgid and tawdry. Right now, the group's rhythms and Lou Gramm's singing tickle the ears of a lot of record buyers, but it's difficult to believe that this band will be able to keep its vast audience with more junk like this. We are not as dumb as Foreigner thinks we are.
Rolling Stone's review of Foreigner's second album, Double Vision.

Monday, March 08, 2010

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

About Foreigner:
Without question, the story of Foreigner begins and will presumably end someday with Mick Jones, the band's one constant during its ongoing, 30-year history. Long before the band he's known for was remotely conceived, Jones was a veteran in the British rock scene in the '60s and '70s, having worked with Gary Wright in Spooky Tooth and serving as a member of the Leslie West Band. Before that he had kept busy as a songwriter and session musician, packing his resume with the kind of experience that would help him lead Foreigner with a steady, visionary hand during the band's late-'70s and early-'80s peak.
Even though the brilliant No. 1 hit "I Want to Know What Love Is" appeared on Foreigner's next album, 1984's Agent Provocateur, the band had clearly begun its decline immediately following the release of 4. Much of this probably had to do with the double-edged nature of Jones' decision to guide the band down an increasingly pop path that was squeezing out the group's rock inclinations. After all, the only two songs anyone remembers from Foreigner's uneven fifth album are synth-based tunes almost entirely lacking in Jones' previous guitar heroics. "That Was Yesterday" was also excellent, but little else measured up.

3E Presents: Foreigner Week

"We forgot all about your needs. We were too busy fulfilling our own."

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Friday, March 05, 2010


The Covers Project has a covers chain.

From the delightful Covered in Folk ("Folk covers of familiar songs. Reimagined versions of folk songs. Because in the folk tradition, music belongs to the community."), an entire list of covers of Ring of Fire. Also, here's an awesome cover of Psycho Killer.

And, speaking of Talking Heads covers: Tom Jones and The Cardigans do "Burning Down the House."

Thursday, March 04, 2010

this just in

My mistake: four coffins.

I don't think it's nice, you laughin'. You see, my mule don't like people laughin'. Gets the crazy idea you're laughin' at him. Now if you apologize like I know you're going to, I might convince him that you really didn't mean it.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Finnish Sniper

Simo Häyhä (December 17, 1905 – April 1, 2002), nicknamed "White Death" (Russian: Белая смерть, Belaya Smert; Finnish: Valkoinen Kuolema; Swedish: den Vita Döden) by the Red Army, was a Finnish sharpshooter. Using a standard iron-sighted, bolt action rifle in the Winter War, he has the highest recorded number (505) of confirmed kills in any major war.
Häyhä used a Finnish variant, M/28, of the Soviet Mosin-Nagant rifle (known as "Pystykorva" rifle, meaning "spitz"), because it suited his small frame (5 ft 3 in/1.60 m). He preferred to use iron sights rather than telescopic sights to present a smaller target (the sniper must raise his head higher when using a telescopic sight), to prevent visibility risks (a telescopic sight's glass can fog up easily), and aid concealment (sunlight glare in telescopic sight lenses can reveal a sniper's position). Another tactic used by Häyhä was to compact the snow in front of him so that the shot wouldn't disturb the snow, thus revealing his position. He also kept snow in his mouth so that when breathing he wouldn't reveal his position.
Simo Häyhä

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

How to fight

The screenshot kind of gives it away (way to go, YouTube), but still pretty funny.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Four chords, 36 songs

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