"If you understood everything I said, you'd be me" - Miles Davis
"There is much pleasure to be gained from useless knowledge." - Bertrand Russell
"Take away the right to say fuck and you take away the right to say fuck the government." - Lenny Bruce
"Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!" - Homer Simpson

Utility Fog Banner

Dept. of Overheard Dumb Statements
"You're so well read...because you read so much"
Damn, and here I was licking the pages.

100 Movies That Deserve More Love
Via Jerry Kindall

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk
NEW YORK (AFP) - One of the most talked about films of recent years, Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Curly," depicts Jerome "Curly" Howard's final 12 hours on earth and, by Gibson's own admission, includes several hours' worth of extremely graphic and violent images of Curly being repeatedly slapped, poked in the eye, conked on the head, and other forms of torture at the hands of fellow Stooges, Moe and Larry.

Industry insiders have predicted an opening week take of up to 30 million dollars. Those figures are all the more extraordinary given that just one year ago Gibson was struggling to find a distributor for a film that boasts no big-name stars and dialogue lifted entirely from 1930s Columbia two-reelers. And, in what appears to be an omen, the lead actor was struck by a pie during filming.

Controversy has focused on charges, mostly levelled by Shemp fan clubs and strongly denied by Gibson, that the movie somehow blames Shemp for Curly's death and will fuel anti-Shemp sentiment.
Via Incoming Signals

Much needed useless information
The Excitement Machine pointed me to a Salon article that explains just WTF is up with those singing furry blobs in the Quiznos ads.
According to Trey Hall, the chief marketing officer, Quiznos gets loads of mail on these ads. He says it breaks into three categories: 1) "What are these creatures?"; 2) "You gotta be kidding"; and 3) "This is genius advertising!" Since that's pretty much the breakdown in my mailbag, too, I'll take these one by one.

What are these creatures? As I say, they're called spongmonkeys. I don't know why and neither did Hall. In your mail to me, you've called them: gerbils with birth defects; Mr. Potato Rats; drug-addled, castrato hamsters; and "hell lemurs" (which, while catchy, is not really accurate, as the lemur body type is far more ectomorphic). Whatever they are, they're clearly Photoshopped, and if pressed I would say the base element is a pygmy marmoset.

Translucent concrete
Via futurismic

Release the Lawyers!
It's a groundbreaking court decision that legal experts say will affect everyone: Police officers in Louisiana no longer need a search or arrest warrant to conduct a brief search of your home or business.
Via Fark

Blew up real good
The Impotence Compensation Project
Via nym psuedo by way of Boing Boing

House of Books
Casa di Libri
Via The Sideshow

Apropos of my last post, here is the The Contrabass Compendium.
Check out the Great Bass Rackett, otherwise known as the sausage bassoon. I bet you shouldn't say "sausage bassoon" over the airwaves.
via Anita Rowland's Home Page

Consider the contrabass saxophone: 7 feet tall and very rare. Only about 30 of them have been built and only 6 are in use today.
Via Apothecary's Drawer Weblog

Who said what when
This database identifies 237 specific misleading statements about the threat posed by Iraq made by these five officials in 125 public appearances in the time leading up to and after the commencement of hostilities in Iraq. The search options on the left can be used to find statements by any combination of speaker, subject, keyword, or date.

I know who I'm afraid of
Month after month they were interrogated, for 12 hours or more at a time, by American security agencies and, repeatedly, by MI5 - in all, they say, they endured 200 sessions each. But when they re-emerged to freedom on Wednesday after two final days of questioning at Paddington Green police station, every apparent shred of evidence had melted away. Iqbal, Rasul and Ahmed, together with the other early arrivals at Guantanamo, had been described by US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld as 'the hardest of the hard core', lethal terrorists 'involved in an effort to kill thousands of Americans'. Even last week the British Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, was claiming America had been justified in holding them.

Yet despite the denial of legal rights or due process, the authorities on both sides of the Atlantic have been forced to accept what the three men said all along - that they were never members of the Taliban, al-Qaeda or any other militant group. The Americans had justified their detention by claiming they were 'enemy combatants', but they were never armed and did not fight.

'They formally told us we were going home last Sunday [several weeks after this news was relayed to the media],' Rasul said. 'We had a final meeting with the FBI, and they tried to get us to sign a piece of paper which said something like I was admitting I'd had links with terrorism, and that if I ever did anything like this again the US could arrest me.' Like the other two detainees freed last week, Tarek Dergoul and Jamal al-Harith, they refused.
also not found in nature

X vs Y
Kerry/Bush blogs side by side
Via skippy dot net by way of Boing Boing

The government's top expert on Medicare costs was warned that he would be fired if he told key lawmakers about a series of Bush administration cost estimates that could have torpedoed congressional passage of the White House-backed Medicare prescription-drug plan.
Via Talking Points Memo

News Flash: High School still sucks
BELLEVUE (WA)-- Starting Monday, students are barred from wearing hats and hoods at Interlake High School, reinforcing a school prohibition against gang-related clothing.

The prohibition on headgear was announced to students Friday afternoon.

No gang incidents have occurred on the northeast Bellevue campus this year, but Assistant Principal Lynn Gill said Interlake is taking preventive measures to keep students focused on academics.

``There's stuff (about gangs) in the news, there's stuff in the community,'' Gill said. ``It's been an issue at other schools.''

I'm obviously a stone original gangsta, because I wear both hat and hood. Of course I belong to the notorious Brotherhood of White Delivery Vans: We Are Everywhere. Why do we bother putting people in jail when all we need to do is take away their hats and hoodies and presto-law abiding citizen!
Via Metafilter

Pinch the Tail, Suck the Head, Go to Hell

Via The Adventures of Accordian Guy in the 21st Century

Where's My Gay Apocalypse?
Where is my raging apocalypse? This is what I want to know. Where is the social meltdown? The moral depravity? I was promised an apocalypse, dammit. What am I supposed to do with all these tubs of margarine and confetti and kazoos?
I believe I have been misled. I was told repeatedly in extra-glowing terminology by multiple raging Bible-quoting drones that The Good Book expressly forbids gay marriage and gay sex, and to engage in either spells imminent doom and instant social bedlam and there are specific verses all about it.

Is this true? Are there actual verses decrying gay marriage? Are they anything like those other Biblical verses, about the rules and regulations surrounding marriage that are making the rounds on the Net right now? Real verses. Actual verses. Verses o' sanctimonious fun. Have you seen them?

Like this: "Marriage shall not impede a man's right to take multiple concubines in addition to his wife or wives." (II Sam 5:13; I Kings 11:3; II Chron 11:21).

Or maybe: "A marriage shall be considered valid only if the wife is a virgin. If the wife is not a virgin, she shall be stoned to death." (Deut 22:13-21) Isn't that cute? Isn't quoting Bible verse fun? Ask your local pastor about that one.

Or how about: "If a married man dies without children, his brother shall marry the widow. If he refuses to marry his brother's widow or deliberately does not give her children, he shall pay a fine of one shoe and be otherwise punished in a manner to be determined by law." (Gen. 38:6-10; Deut 25:5-10). Hey, it's right there, in the Bible. So it must be true.
Maybe Satan is taking his sweet time to marshal his leather-clad armies, watching as other U.S. cities get in on the gay-marriage act, listening as mayors and governors all chime in their support and say what's the big deal. Maybe Beelzebub is waiting for a big moment so as to really leverage the coming news flash, the special report, the sudden activation of the Emergency Broadcast System. Something like:

"This just in: Earthquakes rocked the globe today as giant fire-breathing bees of death swarmed the countryside, feasting on fat white heterosexual babies mostly from Texas and Colorado Springs and Utah and Idaho, as the institution of hetero marriage careened around the mad vortex of space-time like a savage drunken pinball high on black-tar heroin, just like the Christian Right predicted.

"Horrors bled into the streets, terrorists were spawned by the thousand, presidents openly lied so as to lead a nation into bloody violent unwinnable wars, thousands of Catholic priests sexually molested tens of thousands of children over a 50-year period without the slightest punishment, the environment teetered on the brink due to heartless government rollbacks as air quality and water quality and food sources were ravaged in the name of corporate profiteering, the economy crumbled like Jenna Bush after her 10th beer bong as hate and fear and bogus Orange Alerts ruled the land."

Oh wait. That was all before the gay-marriage thing. My bad.
Via Metafilter

Here Comes the Science
Statement on Marriage and the Family from the American Anthropological Association

Arlington, Virginia; The Executive Board of the American Anthropological Association, the world's largest organization of anthropologists, the people who study culture, releases the following statement in response to President Bush's call for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage as a threat to civilization.

"The results of more than a century of anthropological research on households, kinship relationships, and families, across cultures and through time, provide no support whatsoever for the view that either civilization or viable social orders depend upon marriage as an exclusively heterosexual institution. Rather, anthropological research supports the conclusion that a vast array of family types, including families built upon same-sex partnerships, can contribute to stable and humane societies.

The Executive Board of the American Anthropological Association strongly opposes a constitutional amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual couples."
Via Follow Me Here

Billmon is all over the Aristide mess. Also here

I get a big kick out of Powell refering to Aristide as a "failed president". Oh, the irony.

The Despoiling of America: How George W. Bush became the head of the new American Dominionist Church/State
This article is the documented story of how a political religious movement called Dominionism gained control of the Republican Party, then took over Congress, then took over the White House, and now is sealing the conversion of America to a theocracy by taking over the American Judiciary. It?s the story of why and how "the wrath of God Almighty" will be unleashed against the middle class, against the poor, and against the elderly and sick of this nation by George W. Bush and his army of Republican Dominionist "rulers."
Scary as shit
Via wood's lot

devil music

If you're in NYC on March 8th. go see Made Out Of Babies at the Knitting Factory.
Dude, they rawk

It's Time To Get Beneath The Wheels
I don't have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. We're all depressed, impotent, socially awkward, afraid of and allergic to everything. Everybody's out of work or scared of losing the jobs that are breaking their balls and corroding their souls; they can't afford to lose the health insurance that pays for their anti-depressants, Viagra, and weekly visits to the therapist. A dollar will buy you a double cheeseburger, a cup of crappy convenience store coffee, and a pull of the slot machine at one of the million senior citizens centers masquerading as gambling casinos. Banks are run by brazen pimps and usurious mob-men. Shopkeepers peddle bulk generic sudafed and white gas and Doritos to pasty, meth-addled punks. There's no one anywhere that seems to know what to do with us. We know the air is unfit to breathe, our food is unfit to eat, and we sit watching our TVs while some local newscaster tells us about Botox surgery, inspirational octogenarian dog groomers, and various and interchangeable hoods, hustlers, and whores, as if this is exactly the country the founding fathers imagined. We know things are bad. Worse than bad. They're crazy. It's like everything everywhere is going crazy so we don't go out anymore. Armed to the teeth, we sit in a house full of our worthless shit as slowly the world we're living in is getting smaller and all we say is, "Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my computer, flatscreen TV, microwave oven, and my internet porn and I won't say anything." Well I'm not going to leave you alone. I want you to acknowledge your fears and feelings of uselessness and isolation. I don't want you to protest. I don't want you to riot. I don't want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn't know what to tell you to write and you need another condescending junkmail form letter written by a bored intern in Washington like you need another hole in your head. I don't know what to do about the depression and the lousy pop culture and the reality TV and the terrorists and the crying in the streets. All I know is first you've got to admit you're bored and helpless and impotent and lonely. You've got to say, "I'm a human being. God Dammit, my life must be more than this." So, I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window, open it, and stick your head out, and yell, "I'm bored as hell, and I'm not going to take this anymore!" I want you to get up right now. Get up. Go to your windows, open your windows, and stick your head out, and yell, "I'm bored as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!" Things have got to change, my friends. You've got to say, "I'm bored as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!" Then we'll figure out what to do about the depression and the impotence and Larry Fucking King and preserving the sanctity of marriage. But first get up out of your chairs, open your window, stick your head out and yell, "I'm bored as hell and I'm not going to take this anymore!" And then, friends, I want you to listen. Hear that howling vacuum full of nothing you can quite recognize as human? That's called silence.
A revolution is a dream the people's blood has made real. Each of us, I'm sure, has a vision of the America we want to live in and are willing to die for, but unless we learn to articulate these visions in the most concrete terms they will remain scattered fragments, and figments, of a common dream that slowly evaporates each day as we go about our humdrum lives. I've tried here to articulate my own vision, but I can certainly be more concrete. I'd ask you, for starters, to try imagining this: an America where Donald Rumsfeld wears a gray jumpsuit with a name patch and cleans toilets at Dulles International Airport; where a monstrously-perspiring Harvey Weinstein runs the fry baskets at a McDonald's, and Donald Trump stocks shelves at Wal-Mart; where Dick Cheney is nothing but an unhappy file clerk in the suburban offices of a waste management company; and where George Bush is locked up and snorting badly improvised prison crank off his stainless steel maximum security bunk.

That, I hope you'll agree, is an America worth dreaming of, and worth fighting for.

This is no time to be frightened. Timidity will not a revolution make. And please understand that I'm not advocating anarchy. I abhor violence and disorder as much as the next person. I assure you that anyone who shares my essential beliefs is in no danger at all; the only people who may find their freedoms restricted are the unbelievers, the heretics in high places (and their friends in low places). These people will be the only necessary victims of the revolution, but you can't build a civilization with either dead wood or dead souls, and even the most compassionate among us will be hard-pressed to grieve for these odious characters. Those who are capable of genuine repentance, and who are willing to submit to rigorous indoctrination, will be given every opportunity to share in the fruits of our revolution, although I would propose that anyone who ever maintained an office in Washington, Manhattan, or Los Angeles be treated like a convicted felon, stripped of the right to vote, and subjected to the closest possible supervision. I see no other way to safeguard the freedoms we will have fought so hard to secure for all Americans, except for those whose freedoms we will not have fought so hard to secure.
Via wood's lot