Sunday, December 23, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

How Much Longer Will We Do This?

My Facebook Feed Reacts to the Tragedy in Newtown, CT.


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Monday, December 3, 2012

Don't Act Like You're Not Turned On

Show the pics after those five margaritas each...

AP Photo via Politico.

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

Their Destiny

From WaPo:
By all accounts, the past month has been most difficult on Romney’s wife, Ann, who friends said believed up until the end that ascending to the White House was their destiny. They said she has been crying in private and trying to get back to riding her horses. 

"Their destiny." As in they were "destined" to be the first family. Destined. Fated. Entitled.

For you, Ann.

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Thursday, November 8, 2012

I'm Really Proud Of All Of You

For everyone who pushed this campaign forward, whether you made phone calls, knocked on doors, convinced your friends and family, or simply voted, watch and see how your hard work and dedication can bring the President of the United States to tears.

 

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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Going Rogue



Contrary to many of my liberal colleagues, I've never found Chris Christie to be a boogie man. Sure, Christie's been kind of a prick at times and has held positions, made statements, and offered endorsements that I staunchly disagree with. But he deserves credit for handling the Sandy response with aptitude. And he deserves a LOT of credit for going "off-message" a week before a presidential election and praising the actions and leadership of a president who Christie has made no secret he prefers out of the White House come January. In a political culture that is dominated by cowards who endeavor only to speak the script as opposed to the truth, it's refreshing to hear Christie's effusive praise of the man against whom his party's nominee--who has advocated for the elimination of federal disaster coordination agencies such as FEMA--is running. In response to an inane question from the Council of Derps on Fox & Friends about whether the governor would tour storm damaged areas of his state with Mitt Romney (not, you know, with the President of the United States of America), Christie had this to say:
“I have no idea, nor am I the least bit concerned or interested. I’ve got a job to do here in New Jersey that’s much bigger than presidential politics, and I could care less about any of that stuff. I have a job to do. I’ve got 2.4 million people out of power. I’ve got devastation on the Shore. I’ve got floods in the northern part of my state. If you think right now I give a damn about presidential politics, then you don’t know me.”
 I'm sure the Romney campaign is simply loving every second of Governor Christie's ad-libs.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Why Big Bird Shouldn't Be Fired

Observe, Willard Romney, how Mr. Rogers secured $20 million for kids.

 


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Monday, September 24, 2012

Morning Inspiration From Constitutional Law Reading

It is tempting to pretend that [convicts] on death row share a fate in no way connected to our own, that our treatment of them sounds no echoes beyond the chambers in which they die. Such an illusion is ultimately corrosive, for the reverberations of injustice are not so easily confined...and the way in which we choose those who will die reveals the depth of moral commitment among the living.
-Justice Brennan, dissenting in 
McCleskey v. Kemp 481 U.S. 219 (1987)


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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Just A Country Boy From Arkansas

Holy fucking shit Bubba just nailed it. This speech is what moronic DC reporters immediately dub a "gamechanger." And this time they're right. It's refreshing to hear a politician who is as confident in the American people's ability to listen and understand complicated policy matters as he is in his own intellectual and rhetorical prowess. Mr. President, your turn to wonk it the fuck up.


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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Goodbye, Gentle Giant



 The man was in unbelievable shape. Dies of a heart attack. Hug everyone.

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Punished



Holy fucking shit that's heavy. H/t The Clearly Dope.


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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Operation Cookie Jar is GERONIMO


Mission fucking accomplished.

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Black Faces

If you haven't DLed ROYALTY yet you're oppressed.

 

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Lego Wire

Yeah, no clever title or comment. Just view as is:

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Monday, July 9, 2012

Bravo, Andy


"I'm getting closer..."

God, I love sports.



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Thursday, June 28, 2012

GORE WINS FLORIDA




Big thumbs up to Gary He, big thumbs down to CNN and Fox News.

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Thursday, June 21, 2012

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

My Love Is On The High Seas



Very excited to see "Brave" with the little sister next weekend. But damnit it will take titanic effort not to weep in front of her (and face subsequent shaming) when this gorgeous Scottish Gaellic aria starts to play.


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Friday, June 15, 2012

Seven (Of Many) Reasons Why This Season Rocked

Well here it is. The post-Stanley Cup Finals loss post. I find myself so overwhelmed by my love for this sport and for my team and its accomplishments that I shy away from even attempting to write about this season for fear of failing to convey the magnitude and meaning of it all. Suffice to say I am immensely proud of the New Jersey Devils for getting just two wins away from a Cup and incredibly happy for the Los Angeles Kings for winning their franchise's first. I am thrilled with the state of hockey today. Below are just a few things this season and playoffs proved:

1. Ilya Kovalchuk is no longer a $100 million "experiment." 

All of the critics who have dogged and misunderstood him his entire career have been silenced. Kovy led his team and the league in scoring these playoffs (until Game 6 when Anze Kopitar overtook him) with eight goals and eleven assists in 23 games, and did it all while suffering from a herniated disk in his lower back which forced him to miss a game in the Philly series. He came back a new man and for the next few games lit up the Bryz. That is heart. I am looking forward to watching that kind of effort for the next 13 years. Kovalchuk is defying the stereotypical selfish Russian superstar label that the North American media has stuck on his back and the backs of his countrymen for far too long. He's an elite hockey player, a perfect teammate, and a wonderful person.

2. Zach Parise is a leader of men.

Let's not talk about his future with the team right now, except to say that I think Lou gets it done and Zach re-ups. Regardless of where he ends up however, to say that I'm grateful for his presence on this team is a huge understatement. I can't name one hockey player who I think skates harder on every single shift he plays than ZP. Watch his hustle and you'll be hard pressed as well. He gives everything he's got for his teammates and his will to win is infectious, on and off the ice. It's no surprise 29 other NHL teams would love to make him their franchise player. He represents everything I love about Devils hockey. I hope I can continue to wear my #9 red sweater for years to come.

3. Martin Brodeur proves age is just a number.

Every team needs its rock. For the players on the bench, Marty was that unwavering pillar of stone all playoffs. He was vintage. He was clutch. But most of all, he was calm. And his cool demeanor permeated the entire locker room in even the most high-pressure situations (and gave hope and strength to stressed, strung-out fans screaming at their televisions and praying to false idols). All this from a man who was supposed to have yielded obediently to Father Time and bowed out of the game a year ago. Instead, he'll likely return for another year. Why? Because he's "having fun." I love it.

4. Adam Henrique is Mr. Clutch.

This kid played with the poise of a steely veteran while delivering some timely, memorable goals. Double OT, Game 7 in Florida, beats Theodore five-hole to exterminate the pesky rats. Overtime, Game 6 in Jersey, stuffs home a loose puck past Lunqvist to slit the throat of Rangers Nation's Cup dreams and stab 1994 in the gut. Third period, Game 4 in Los Angeles, with his team's season on the line yet again, collects a smooth pass from David Clarkson off his right skate and rifles one of the few pucks to beat Jonathan Quick clean these playoffs. All while rocking a particularly devilish goatee which eventually became a dirty porno stache for the finals. I hope we have this kid centering our first line for years to come. If Adam Henrique is not awarded the Calder Trophy for rookie of the year (he'd be the first Devil to win it since Scott Gomez in 2000. Let's hope, no matter what, Henrique doesn't follow his example), I will cease to believe in justice.

5. David Clarkson is a 30 goal scorer.

Doesn't matter if it never happens again. It happened.

6. Peter DeBoer is a first-class coach.

Along with this impeccable assistant staff (Larry Robinson, Adam Oates) this man squeezes the best out of his players night in and night out. A relative unknown compared to the likes of his playoff counterparts in Laviolette, Tortorella, and Sutter, he was nevertheless able to outcoach and outmaneuver them, knowing exactly when and how to jumble the lines and utilize his team's depth to get the match-ups he needed. DeBoer continued the time-honored Devils tradition of defensive hockey but knew he had the depth and skill to be more aggressive on the forecheck than I've seen this team be in years (a style of hockey that led to DeBoer's famous "swarm it up!" catchphrase that found its way onto rally towels handed out at Prudential Center). Make no mistake: without DeBoer this team would not have made it to the Finals. Like Marty, his calm and cool demeanor has been adopted by the entire team, and their discipline in playing whistle to whistle even against hated rivals like the Flyers and Rangers is noteworthy. The Devils have had a lot of coaches over the past few years and it would be very nice to have some consistency behind the bench for years.

7. The organization needed this and the team delivered.

Losing money, in debt to many creditors, in need of new investors, still struggling to sell enough tickets, in a public feud with a high-profile mayor, a disastrous (albeit inspired at the end) season last year yada yada yada. The list of reasons why Devils fans should worry about their beloved franchise are many. But in the midst of all of the off-ice distractions that could've sunk this season, this team put its collective head down and just went to work. A year after missing the playoffs, this year's roster re-established the winning attitude that Lou Lamoriello has instilled into this franchise for decades. Devils hockey is a proud tradition, and this team lived up to that pedigree at a crucial moment in the franchise's life. This year was an opportunity which the Devils made the most of.

I have followed and loved this team since that infamous May in 1994 when I was so upset over a double OT Game 7 loss in the Eastern Conference Finals I couldn't even fall sleep at night. Since then I have witnessed three Stanley Cup championships and only two years without the playoffs. I have watched the greatest goaltender in the world become just that. I have watched great players come and go and come back again. I've witnessed a double OT Cup-winning goal. I've loved the A Line, the Crash Line, the EGG Line, ZZ Pops, etc. I've seen this team win, lose, come close, fall behind, rally, fall behind again, and win. I've known glory and I've known heartbreak. As a fan who has been spoiled with success I've feared the coming age of mediocrity only to see the team stave it off year after year. This season provided all of those highs and lows and I will never forget it. I'm looking forward to proudly raising another banner to the rafters of The Rock in October.






Go Devils!

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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

In Which Kevin Spacey Reminds You Of His Brilliance



What's even more brilliant is that this short film preceded a music video on YouTube as an "ad."

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Hail Marty

                             

I suppose this is technically devil worshiping but so be it.


 h/t Puck Daddy


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Saturday, May 26, 2012

1994 Is Dead

MATTEAU MATTEAU MATTEAU HENRIQUE HENRIQUE HENRIQUE!

It was eighteen years ago to the day when the New Jersey Devils, leading the Rangers 3-2 in the Eastern Conference Finals, blew a 2-0 lead to Mark Messier--he of "The Guarantee" fame--and their cross-river rivals and lost a chance to advance to the Stanley Cup Finals. The Rangers won a decisive Game 7 at the Garden in double OT to move on to what would eventually be their first championship in 783 years (math might be off). It was a moment that became the stuff of legend for Rangers Nation and has haunted Devils fans who have woken up shivering in the night with echos of a certain player's name being shouted repeatedly by the play-by-play announcer reverberating in our heads.

Midway through the 2nd period of tonight's Game 6 at The Rock, the Rangers seemed to be evoking history. After falling behind 2-0 as a result of an ass-kicking 1st period display by Jersey, the blueshirts were at it again, eliminating a lead (as they'd done in Game 5) and tilting the ice in their favor. A tightly-checked 3rd would lead to an extra stanza, and the Rangers were one goal away from forcing a Game 7 in their building (where they've played two Game 7s previously these playoffs and, obviously, won both) and repeating history. But then, sixty-three seconds into the overtime period...

 

Script flipped. Writing a new one. Just in time for a date with Hollywood.



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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Orange Crushed

Ilya Kovalchuk straight trolls orangeheads.

And here we are, a week and a half after I feared my gracelessness would spell misfortune for my hockey team in the Eastern semi-finals against the mighty Flyers. The Devils are headed to the conference finals. The big bad Flyers, with their rough-and-tumble free-wheelin' barn-stormin' brand of hockey that reduced a respected organization in Pittsburgh to a piƱata, are staying home, where they were eliminated in five games. Claude Giroux, allegedly the "best player in the world," registered less even-strength points in this series than our recently turned 40-year-old netminder and watched his team's season end from the press box having been suspended for a petulant headshot on Dainius Zubrus in Game 4.

That illegal hit was telling. It demonstrated how deep under the Flyers' skin we'd gotten by just playing the type of hockey they nearly patented in the quarterfinals; by getting pucks low, winning board battles, establishing forecheck, and peppering their shaky goalie with shots, all while remaining disciplined by avoiding any after-the-whistle goonery that marked the Pittsburgh series, we frustrated the likes of Giroux and his teammates into making bad decisions. Read Scott Hockey Jesus Hartnell, he of 37 regular season goals fame, talk about how the Devils (who?) managed to hold him to just one goal all series: 
"I don't think we thought we were going to win four straight," Hartnell said today, "but definitely, they've played a lot stronger and a lot harder than me personally would have thought they'd come with. They've been on a high the last few weeks obviously, beating Florida in Game 7."
That "high" you're describing Scotty? It's called belief. And we just outbelieved you in five.


Photo New Jersey Devils
H/t Puck Daddy


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Monday, May 7, 2012

Must Go Faster

This wins cute gold medals.

 

 Via Gawker.

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Climax

This song. This video.

 


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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Rats Exterminated



Oh what's that you say? Gleefully posting this picture of Florida Panthers management realizing their stupid Cinderella season was over will anger the hockey gods and rouse their righteous karmic ire upon my Devils in the second round? I say to hell with your gods! They've managed to fuck with everything in these playoffs--apparently out of sheer boredom--and I am not alone in my disdain for their shenanigans. Double OT in Game 7 against the worst teams to qualify for the playoffs? In a year when the team is losing money, our first ballot Hall of Fame face-of-the-franchise legend is playing coy with retirement, and our studly future-face-of-the-franchise captain is hearing the alluring siren call of younger, sexier teams that will satisfy his every need? Was sending me into cardiac arrest fun for you, you divinely sadistic fucks? I defy your anger! Just like Adam Henrique did when he whistled one through Jose Three-Or-More's gaping five-hole four minutes into the fifth period to keep our season alive. I'm sure you'll reward him with the Calder Trophy.

In other hockey news, Draper sings the Blues:

 

Via Puck Daddy


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Friday, April 27, 2012

Morphin' Time

My friends and I were discussing this Oscar-snubbed movie recently, specifically at 1:45 when I LOST MY MARBLES as a wee lad wielding double blasters in front of the TV in the living room every time this trailer aired.





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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Or Sung My Life Away

Augustana rootsys-up "Stars and Boulevards" at Rams Head Live in Baltimore, MD. Please don't mind my idiot singing. Nice remix of sorts but I still prefer the nearly perfect original version. New music from this band soon, can't wait.
 

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Marry Me Instead

Because I know we'll be happy forever.

Unless you're a Rangers fan.



Via Puck Daddy


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Monday, April 16, 2012

Camp Gambino

Big ups to GW Program Board for booking the dopestness act since Common lit up U-Yard in 06. I'm pretty sure most of the kids around me were in 4th grade in 06.





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Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Our Way Of Life

One day I'll write an essay on why, in a world teetering on the verge of a self-perpetuating spiral descent into vapidity, narrowness, and selfishness, I find timeless meaning in the purest of sports. One day.



h/t Nums.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A GW Student's Request of Jon Stewart

Because a) when GW is mentioned on TV every GW student/alum runs around the interwebs with massive erections tweeting toolish hashtags and embedding the clip on worthless blogs and b) because it has been established on this worthless blog that I love NDT. Oh and JS:


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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Heavyweights



This would be a salty scrap until one of them mentions the Ryan budget.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Because We Deserve It



Mad Men returns March 25th. Get out your rocks glasses.

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cyber Civil Rights

My civil procedure professor Danielle Citron (who has fantastic taste in music) is writing a book about online harassment and cyber civil rights (which I believe is tentatively entitled "Hate 2.0," set for an April 2013 release). To that end, I will be serving as one of her research assistants this summer. Here she discusses the recent verdict in the Tyler Clementi online harassment case in New Jersey on All Things Considered.

Update: More insight on this case from Professor Citron.



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Monday, March 12, 2012

Call Your Girlfriend



As my friend Sarah said, "If Katy Perry wrote this song, she'd make a winky video in which she desperately exclaims 'Look at how cute and sexy I am!' Instead, Robyn free-style danced in an abandoned warehouse sporting a backwards goat hair sweater and a bowl cut."

All true, but this song didn't hit full dopeness status until these awesome chics--also from Sweden--did this:



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Saturday, March 10, 2012

Compared To What



Some awesome shit my awesome law prof tells me to listen to and I do.

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Friday, March 9, 2012

Fresh Guacamole

The first time I watched this, it inexplicably made me feel squishy and weird. And then I watched it again. And again.



h/t Jessi Gordon

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Monday, March 5, 2012

The Most Astounding Fact Of The Universe

I particularly love how NDT (my favorite astrophysicist, and yes I have a favorite astrophysicist) answered this question because I believe I would have offered the same, though not nearly as eloquently and poignantly as he does. To be reminded of this knowledge is elevating: your origins are stellar.



Soundtrack provided by Cinematic Orchestra, performing "To Build A Home."

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Sunday, March 4, 2012

You Can Play

Brian Burke, general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, tragically lost his son Brendan in a car accident in February of 2010, mere months after Brendan had revealed a deeply-held secret to his father: he was gay. In a sport in which machismo and ruggedness define its players and "casual homophobia" is the operative norm in locker rooms, Brendan had struggled mightily with his decision to go public with his sexual orientation. But his courage to finally do so gave hope to so many other LGBT athletes across the world of sports who fear having their skill and ability undermined by arcane and bigoted perceptions of "softness."

When Brendan came out to his father, one of the most brilliant and respected minds in the game and a man who throughout his career was the epitome of Hockey Tough Guy, he was afraid of a lot of things, but mostly that his father would be disappointed in him. Instead, Brian Burke couldn't have been prouder of his son. To honor Brendan's legacy and to help foster an environment in hockey in which LGBT players do not feel prejudiced, unwelcome, disrespected, or openly reviled, Brian Burke and Brendan's brother Patrick have started the You Can Play project with the assistance of many high-profile NHLers like Rick Nash, Claude Giroux, and Henrik Lundqvist to name a few. It's message is simple and resonates; if you can play, you can play, and nothing else matters:



h/t Puck Daddy.

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Vindication

[video/via]

I have been saying this for YEARS. Thank you NDT.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How I Wish I Left Every Concert

First there was this. Now this:



Somewhere, Cee Lo spun around in his chair.

He keeps this up and I will demand he square off with this poindexter on The Sing Off. It may be the only debate America needs to see:



An aside: I await tomorrow's breathless RNC fundraising e-mail pitch: "Make President Obama Sing the Blues."

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Hawt



Anyone find video of this? How uncharacteristically progressive of Rick.

h/t Wonkette.

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Monday, February 20, 2012

Bonnie Bear

I risk turning SR into a Justin Vernon fan site, but I don't care. This man inspires me to keep writing music and strive for beauty, and I don't know if these songs make your eyes well up and your mouth smile at the same time but I know I'm not alone.



Speaking of Bon Iver, SNL with gold:





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Friday, February 17, 2012

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Names of Our Homes

The moderns, unlike the ancients, seem to have a passion for misnomer. Why else should the great island of the eastern sea, greatest of all islands, be called New Guinea instead of Papua, or that English island, which pushes its green shores far down towards the Antarctic, be baptized New Zealand instead of Maoria, or worse still, the oldest province of Australia burden itself with the unspeakable name of New South Wales, which by natural sequence would make its people New-South-Walers! Our happiness depends a great deal upon the places in which we live, and the pleasure or pain they give is affected by the names we know them by.

...What a name is New York for this queen of western cities? Compare it with that which the Indian gave the island, barbarian as we call him, Manhattan or Manahatta. Who for its euphony and its significance would not wish the old name back again? Who that cares for such things does not grieve over the incongruity of the present name with the place? Old York and New York are as unlike as possible; one a small inland city, the other the seaport of half the world. As the voyager comes in from the sea, beholding the amplitude of the haven, the beauty of the islands, the richness and variety of the shores, the two rivers which clasp the island city with a rushing of great waters; the buildings, and the ships; the great bridge hanging in the air above them all, looking from below like an arch of gossamer, but above trodden on its solid floors as if it were part of the enduring earth, and withal the abounding and exultant life that animates the scene, he is ready to exclaim: 'Oh thou that art situate at the entry of the sea, which art a merchant of the people unto many isles; thy borders are in the midst of the seas; thy builders have perfected thy beauty.' One thing only is wanting to the completeness of the picture; the crown of a fitting name on the head of the imperial city. May we not hope that one day, when she joins hands with her sister city, as she surely will, she will retake the old and true name of the ever bright island of Manhattan.
The above is an excerpt from a lecture I stumbled upon by David Dudley Field to the American Geographical Society in February of 1885, in which he laments the uninspired and inadequate old-world names of towns, cities, and places all across the North American continent. Field is dissatisfied with recycled classical nomenclature like "Athens, Arcadia, Attica...Babylon, Cairo, Carthage..Ithaca...Jerusalem...Rome" as well as European reruns like "Amsterdam, Berlin, Dresden...Dublin, Edinburgh, Florence, Genoa...Naples...Vienna." While he is perturbed by these unimaginative misnomers of American places, Field is wholly disgusted with the simplistic, "semi-barbarous" small-town appellations like "You Bet, Pop Corn, Wild Cat, Cub Run, Cut Shin, Bake Oven, Big Coon, Burn Corn, Bawhide, Toad Vine, Black Jack, Skunk Lake, Buzzard Boost, Cat Creek, Dirt Town, Doctor Town, Jug Tavern, Sawdust, Big Fort, Fish Hook, Big John Cowskin, Cut Off, and so on." Field advocates a return to native American names (he proposes "Tacoma" for what became the state of Washington, and "Sonora" in place of New Mexico, for example), which he believes would serve as a "memorial" to "the words of their plaintive tongue, lingering forever upon the hill-tops, the valleys and the streams which they loved so well[.]" Field also argues that the superior richness of the English language over French pleads for the banishment of the affix "ville," which he considers to be "mortifying proof of bad taste, or poverty of invention or of stolid indifference. The passion for it is almost a disease, and the instances of its disfigurement may be counted by thousands upon thousands. What could be more dreadful than McGrawville?"

As a map-geek who has spent hours studying the names of places and their origins and who spends almost as much time naming his fictional SimCities as he does building them, I so completely appreciate this man's passion for this subject matter and commiserate with his exasperation as to the lame unoriginality of the names of many of the places we call home.

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Ten Hands, One Guitar



And yes, a cute blonde. Walk Off The Earth covering Gotye's (featured on SR before) "Somebody That I Used To Know."

Gotye on the lyrics: "I didn't intend it to be a two-person song from the start, but when I got to the end of writing the first chorus it didn't feel like there was anywhere else for my character to go; it didn't feel like there was any more story to tell. So that prompted me to write an alternative perspective, the other side of the coin."

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

We'll Be Glowing In The Dark



It's Valentine's Day. Be a cartoon heart.

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Best "New" Artist

Nevermind the misnomer since Justin Vernon has been making beautiful music for years. He and his band are deserving of his Grammys tonight. Here is his gorgeous cover of Bonnie Raitt's poignant ballad, "I Can't Make You Love Me," with a bit of "Nick of Time" thrown in at the end.




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Thursday, February 9, 2012

Patterned Discord



Spotted this on my walk back home from Rams Head. It made me stop.

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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Fanboy


Thanks a Lot
Crystal Baller
Can You Take Me
Graduate
Darkness
Losing a Whole Year
Faster
Never Let You Go
Bonfire
Wounded
Red Star
Jumper
Slow Motion
Dao of St. Paul
Motorcycle Drive By
Monotov's Private Opera

Semi-Charmed Life
Water Landing
God Of Wine


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Sunday, February 5, 2012

"Liking Is For Cowards. Go For What Hurts."

The ultimate goal of technology, the telos of techne, is to replace a natural world that’s indifferent to our wishes — a world of hurricanes and hardships and breakable hearts, a world of resistance — with a world so responsive to our wishes as to be, effectively, a mere extension of the self.

...A related phenomenon is the transformation, courtesy of Facebook, of the verb “to like” from a state of mind to an action that you perform with your computer mouse, from a feeling to an assertion of consumer choice. And liking, in general, is commercial culture’s substitute for loving.

[Consumer technology products] are...great allies and enablers of narcissism. Alongside their built-in eagerness to be liked is a built-in eagerness to reflect well on us. Our lives look a lot more interesting when they’re filtered through the sexy Facebook interface. We star in our own movies, we photograph ourselves incessantly, we click the mouse and a machine confirms our sense of mastery.

And, since our technology is really just an extension of ourselves, we don’t have to have contempt for its manipulability in the way we might with actual people. It’s all one big endless loop. We like the mirror and the mirror likes us. To friend a person is merely to include the person in our private hall of flattering mirrors.

...The simple fact of the matter is that trying to be perfectly likable is incompatible with loving relationships. Sooner or later, for example, you’re going to find yourself in a hideous, screaming fight, and you’ll hear coming out of your mouth things that you yourself don’t like at all, things that shatter your self-image as a fair, kind, cool, attractive, in-control, funny, likable person. Something realer than likability has come out in you, and suddenly you’re having an actual life.

Suddenly there’s a real choice to be made, not a fake consumer choice between a BlackBerry and an iPhone, but a question: Do I love this person? And, for the other person, does this person love me?

There is no such thing as a person whose real self you like every particle of. This is why a world of liking is ultimately a lie. But there is such a thing as a person whose real self you love every particle of. And this is why love is such an existential threat to the techno-consumerist order: it exposes the lie.

Read more (as I blog and tweet this) from author Jonathan Franzen's commencement address to the Kenyon College Class of 2011. This may have inspired me to finally pick up a copy of "Freedom." You know, once I'm through with all this case law.


Step into the rain: secondrain.blogspot.com

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Bo Watches Snow With BO From Limo

by Pete Souza

Waiting for his Newtness to decry this clear misuse of taxpayer money.


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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Gabby

Photo

A year after a torrent and fury of hatred took the lives of six and wounded thirteen others, including the congresswoman from the eighth district of Arizona, this woman, with stoic determination and courage, continues to inspire a nation. Yesterday, she stepped down from her seat in the Congress so she can focus on completing her recovery in full. But when she does, she'll get back to doing what she has always done best: serving others. Thank you, Gabby.


Step into the rain: secondrain.blogspot.com

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Universal Symbol


Middle finger to the lips says it all. This is what happens when people talk in the library and I have too much time on my hands.

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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Bon Joviver



Almost as good as the real thing.

Step into the rain: secondrain.blogspot.com

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Shit DC Says

I know I know I know everyone and their everybodys from DC has linked to this video, but it's just too good to pass up. If you're from DC or have lived there for some time, you get it. Conspicuously missing from this video however are any references to the numerous DC schools (Gduuubs), the Hill, NoVa, and Georgetown (such ripe sources of douchey DC references), and the staple DC institution, Ben's. I also would have preferred a lot more Metro-bitching, which is spoken in a particularly distinct jargon. But we'll forgive these minor oversights and applaud this hilarious take on the ubiquitous "shit says" videos:




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Monday, January 16, 2012

Party Animal

0hdeer:

heavythoughts:

mynamesjustanoose:

this is me.

when I go anywhere

dogs are not interrested in/don’t like me. true story.

pretty much wherever I go


Dogs are my bests.

h/t funny for life

Step into the rain: secondrain.blogspot.com

Sunday, January 1, 2012

For The Soup Boys

I returned from my two week stay in India last night with just enough time to come home, drop my bags, pour a scotch, and toast the New Year. India was wonderful and maddening. Pictures to come. But while I left most of it behind, I couldn't quite shed this song from my brain. Behold the biggest hit in India currently:



Those who hold contemporary Bollywood music in the same contempt as I do should appreciate what this song has been able to accomplish. Sure, it's ubiquity (practically every car radio, cafe, television, and iPod in India is spinning it) is not unique; this is par for the course for your standard chart-topping, inescapable nache nache Bollywood gaana. But this song wasn't produced by some grease-haired big-wig in Mumbai with a wretched Govinda dub-over in mind. It was written and recorded in less than half an hour by Tamil actor Dhanush, a star in what my cousins informed me is referred to as "Kollywood," India's less popular Tamil movie industry, the very same industry that brought us this masterpiece. Employing drunken "tanglish" (basically just adding a "a" or "u" sound to the ends of English words) Dhanush sings the blues, crooning about a black-hearted woman on a "murderous rampage" (kolaveri), killing love and his happiness. In so doing, Dhanush gives "soup boys" a sad song to toast their shared misery to. It's a silly, lighthearted heartbreak song that might actually break your heart. And its explosive success is a big finger in the eye of every Bollywood producer who has subjected us to their slick over-produced cookie-cutter trash. This "flop song" has launched a new wave in Indian youth culture and music, sweeping up a latent sentiment and dropping it on the shores of the mainstream Indian culture conscience. This song is poetic satire. And Indians could use more irony.

Speaking of Bollywood music however, props where props are due. I love this beautiful ballad from "The Dirty Picture," one of the biggest movies of the year starring the glowing Vidya Balan as Silk Smitha, India's most famous "porn" stars:




Step into the rain: secondrain.blogspot.com