Friday, August 7, 2015

Flashback Song: "Letter From an Occupant"

Despite being one of the smartest people I know, I'm still not entirely sure what New Pornographers's "Letter From an Occupant" is about.

Fortunately it doesn't seem like anyone else does either. Case in point: A. C. Newman, a member of the band itself  said this when asked it the song was actually about something:
"I don't know what a 'letter from an occupant' is, but I'm hoping that I will figure it out at some point. It sounds like it must mean something. It simply must."
Maybe ass-kicking pop music needs no explanation.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

An Upcoming Weekend of Tumult

Two Presidential candidates coming to Portland this week. Hillary Clinton is attending a $2,700 per person dinner to raise funds for her campaign. A dinner that has everyone in Portland asking the same question: "where the fuck is Dunthorpe and why is it considered 'exclusive'?" Dunthorpe: Danny Glover and Linus Torvalds live here!

Why $2,700? Because it takes a lot of money to constantly raise money (the Koch brothers didn't invite her to their fellatio contest last weekend) and $2,500 per person was NOT going to cover everything; but $3,000 per person was too much. What would they even do with that extra $300?!

The $2,700 covers the cost of the brie, lobster bisque*, field greens, duck confit, fresh berries & gelato and an assortment of regional wines and micro brews (cash bar). They're not trying to make a profit. And the forced conversations and awkwardly posed photographs are free**!

Also Col. Sanders is coming for one of his hippie communist never-gonna-win rallies that are so popular with the young people today. I think it's sponsored by LiveNation and Red Bull and tickets are like $50 (plus $82 in fees and convenience charges via Ticketbastards) for general admission, $125 for reserved seating and $190 for VIP seating with free Red Bull and the chance to mingle with Fred Armisen, k.d. lang and Tonya Harding (who is bartending in that section, just a coincidence).

These 2 events could very easily disrupt my plans to stay in and avoid humanity.

* All courses gluten-free, vegetarian option available; vegans are requested to stay home and consider what they're doing with their lives.
** Once you've, you know, paid $2,700.

Song of the Day: "Asleep in the Deep"

"Asleep in the Deep" by Mastodon
I sent Adam a thing about the most metal description of eating a chicken sandwich ever (below) and he sent me back the video for this song. Which is how you sometimes get a song of the day.

Click to embiggen

Song: "Asleep in the Deep"
Artist: Mastodon

A Venn Diagram on Ellen Foley

You guys are so lucky. The thoughts stop for you. You sleep; you dream; you have a life. You aren't haunted by an overload of data and a brain that wants to identify relationships between them. You've probably never even edited a Wikipedia entry.

One of my favorite Clash songs is "Hitsville UK"--a fantastic song scorning the major labels of the British music industry of that era that sounds nothing like pretty much any other Clash song. Listen for yourself.

Didn't know Mick Jones's voice had that much range, did you? That's because it doesn't. That is the voice of Ellen Foley.

"Hey, that's the name up in the middle of those Olympic rings!" I hear you thinking. Good for you.

That same Ellen Foley played the pre-Christine "Christine" on the first season of Night Court (at the time America's favorite show to leave on after something they actually liked came on--later replaced by Wings)

Fun fact: the Night Court theme was not written by Dave Grusin; it written by a computer designed to mimic the sounds normally created by Dave Grusin in the wild. That computer was nominated for 2 Emmys and died in 2001. Rest in peace dude.

Before any of that she was Meat Loaf's singing partner on a relatively obscure song called "Paradise by the Dashboard Lights." If you thought that was Karla DeVito you're a fucking idiot. DeVito merely lip-synced the vocals in the video and sang the part during the tour.

Fun fact: Karla DeVito is Danny DeVito's mom and the wife of 1970s heart throb Robbie Benson, star of... movies. I forget which.
Funner fact: Meat Loaf's real name is Marvin Loaf.

What else don't you know about Ellen? She was in six movies and you've seen at least 3 of them (unless you're too young to have seen Night Court): Hair, Tootsie, The King of Comedy, Fatal Attraction, Cocktail and Married to the Mob.

Cocktail for fuck's sake! 5 excellent movies and Cocktail, arguably one of the worst movies of the 80s, a decade that includes Zapped, Can't Stop the Music and Grease 2. In Roger Ebert's review of the movie he said "the more you think about what really happens in Cocktail, the more you realize how empty and fabricated it really is." But did you listen to Roger Ebert when you watched it, for the first time, at the end of 2011 as part of Elisabeth Shue vs. the Mayans Week? No, you didn't. So you can't blame Roger Ebert this time. Obama? Sure. Ebert, no.

She also starred in what appears to be a sketch comedy show starring only girls called 3 Girls 3 alongside the legendary Debbie Allen and Mimi "Dharma's mom" Kennedy. And if you don't know why Debbie Allen is legendary, sigh, I just can't.

So there you go. And it's not even her birthday.

Monday, August 3, 2015

My Life as a Cautionary Tale: Famous Movie Quotes Edition

Actual quote: "You're gonna need a bigger boat"
Jaws, an iconic movie from 1975. It was the first Hollywood summer blockbuster, and so many elements from it have been used in so many action/adventure and suspense movies after it, that even if you haven't seen it, you've probably "seen it."

I didn't understand this concept until I saw All About Eve and The Godfather, movies so influential that pop culture and later directors would pay homage, satire or flat out copy ideas, interactions, plot structure or quote in their movies. It's having a sense of deja vu the first time you see a movie. And it's kinda cool. It's possibly the greatest validation a movie can get.

"You're gonna need a bigger boat" (which I mis-remembered as "we're gonna need a bigger boat") is #35 on the AFI Greatest Movie Quotes of All Time from 2005. So when I was chatting with a coworker via Skype (typing, not on cam) and discussing a need for us to get a larger team to finish proofing data in a client-facing portal in an timely manner, I used this quote.

Except I didn't.

Via a simple typo I turned this quote "we're gonna need a bigger boat" into a horrifyingly racist quote. Fun fact: the "n" key is next to the "b" key on most keyboards. I did not mistype the word boat. I did mistype the word bigger.

I was awful.


I immediately tried to correct myself by typing "bigger."

As luck would have it, I made the exact same mistake again, as if I wanted to emphasize my racism.

Intensely awful.

Fortunately for me this was not on Wheel of Fortune as happened to Randy Marsh. But I'm sure that could still happen. (NOTE: I typed "Nut" at the beginning of this sentence, twice. So yeah... )

The lesson here? Don't do that.

A Better Deal

"They misrepresented testimony, dismissed contrary evidence, and substituted vitriol for analysis. They seemed baffled by the idea of having to work and negotiate with other countries"--"Not Fit to Lead" William Saltan @ Slate

Last week FOX News presented in-depth analysis on the treaty that will allow Iran to murder 500 bajillion Israelis with zero consequences (I'm paraphrasing here). Wait, not FOX News, the Daily Show. It was a montage of a variety of the 17 candidates for the Republican nomination decrying the treaty. And can you blame them? Murdering Israelis?! That's not a good treaty.

When asked how they would improve the treaty the montage suggests that every last one of them (besides the forgotten: Carla Fiorina, Jeff Gilmore, Thom Pataki, Robert Kasich, that other one; candidates so viable that learning their actual names will in no way benefit me in the future) gave a comprehensive list of specific aspects of the treaty they would improve upon.

Jk, they all said they would reject the treaty in favor of a better deal. Which is brilliant. Who wouldn't want a better deal? An idiot, that's who.

What's in a better deal? It's a better a deal, you know... better. Better for Israel and definitely better for the US.

Why were other countries even participating in negotiations? The US and Israel should have just written the words "Suck it Iran" on 2 blank sheets of paper and then taped them together in a loop before faxing that to the Irani government so the next morning they'd have like 200 pages of that fax and their fax machine would be out of paper... faxing, I am old. It's our way or the highway. You're either with us or you're a terrorist. You either have it or you want it.
What's my point? I forget. But President Obamaphone and John "bike accident in France" Kerry should definitely have held out for a better deal. Benjamin Netanyahu is sure of it.