January 31, 2006
When Obama Love Goes Too Far
I get home to catch the tailend of a story about the passing of Coretta Scott King. It was done by Leon Harris, formerly of CNN, currently of DC's WJLA. Harris rightly spoke of her important work--before and after her husband's death--to ensure that America's promise of liberty for all reached us all.
Then he said this, "Almost 40 years later, America's first African-American senator mourned the loss of a mentor."
Cut to footage of Barack Obama.
I love Barack. He's wonderful. He's a great senator. One day, I hope he'll be a great president. But he will never be the first African American senator. That would be Hiram Revels. Hell, Obama isn't even the first African American senator from Illinois. In the last fifteen years.
I can understand a reporter or writer or producer not being well-versed enough in history to know about the Reconstruction senators, or even a Massachusetts senator from the '70s. But to forget Carol Mosely-Braun? That's just wrong. And sloppy, sloppy reporting.
Capturing The Free State
Sufjan Stevens began his ambitious 50 State Project with 2003's Michigan and last year's critically acclaimed Illinois. Basically, the adorable Mr. Stevens is writing an album for all of the states of the union. I'm sad that DC probably won't make the cut (maybe just a cassingle?), but I offer the following suggestions for Sufjan songs based on my native state.
1. "Mary Surratt Was Hanged Not Hung"
2. "At the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, the Experiment Has Gone Awry!! He's the Goatman!! Ahhhhh!"
3. "Dunbreathe the Dundalk Air"
4. "F. Scott and Zelda Are Buried Just Off of Rockville Pike. Past the Dave & Busters. Past the Best Buy."
5. "Nothing Hurts Like Getting Old Bay in a Cut. Pass me a Natty Boh!"
6. "A Brief Reprise for Kendal Ehrlich, Who Wanted To Shoot Britney Spears, And for Very Bad Reasons"
7. "The Eastern Shore Sure Is Quiet (Pocomoke Sleeps)"
8. "A Note to the People of PG County Who Keep Trying to Secede: Come Back Takoma Park! Come Back Bowie!!"
9. "Fear the Turtle!, Or Sure We Once Tried to Build a Moat of Beer Around Campus But Now We're a Serious Institution of Higher Education, Or What the Hell's a Terrapin Anyway?"
10. "What I Saw Floating in Deep Creek Lake"
11. "For the Ladies of Hampden: Ool and Wooter Don't Mix, Hon"
12. "The Sailors Climb a Greasy Pole Today in Annapolis, Annapolis"
Of course, if one were to draw a Venn diagram of those who will really enjoy this post, it would be the very small subset of those who are at least familiar with the nature of Sufjan Stevens song titles AND those who have some level of knowledge of the state of Maryland. I can only think of about three of you.
January 30, 2006
January 28, 2006
Don't Ask, Don't Tell, Don't "Model" for a Gay Porn Web Site
Not that I watch gay porn, mind you, but when I saw the headline GIs from celebrated unit in gay porn? I immediately wondered if the site in question was activeduty.com.
Of course, the article doesn't mention the site specifically. A quick check of the whois record for it shows that activeduty is registered in Fayetteville, just like the unnamed site in the article. The site also appears to be down this morning, which leads me to believe it's been taken offline as a result of the army brouhaha.
P.S. Is it me or did someone have fun writing "celebrated unit" in that headline?
P.P.S. Speaking of not-safe-for-work celebrated units. Let's pour one out for Cole tonight.
January 25, 2006
After reading in DCist about the District of Columbia Olympic Committee, I can see myself on the DC Badminton team. Can't you?
I'm pretty sure I could take Eric Go. That Khan Malaythong looks pretty tough, but--with enough practice--I bet I could break him.
Picture it: Beijing. 2008. With my mighty battledore, I will make grown men cry. My graceful shuttlecock handling will bring comparisons to Nadia Comaneci, Peggy Fleming, the Jamaican Bobsled Team. And when I win the final match, as they put the gold medal around my neck and the opening chords of Chuck Brown's "Bustin' Loose" brings the arena to its feet, you'll be able to say you knew me when.
January 24, 2006
An Open Letter
Dear Gawker Media,
The new Kinja sucks. The new Wonkette sucks. That is all.
January 23, 2006
Full vs. Baby
Sometimes, say when you're in a store purchasing special undergarments, you really don't want anyone to call attention to you. Yesterday, at a store I don't usually frequent, I was quietly making my way to the counter when a loud, large man said to the woman at the register, "Oh, hey, was that your brother who came in here looking for you the other day? He's really cute!"
"Oh, yeah, tall blond guy?"
"Oh my yes," then with a sweeping motion in my direction, "He's about as tall as this one."
"Yeah, I guess my brother is," she replied, "maybe a little taller."
And then, the "gentleman" (who would make Rip Taylor seem like William Hurt) said "AND YOUR BROTHER HAS A FULL FACE JUST LIKE THIS GUY."
Oh no she din't.
It's bad enough I was made a prop in his conversation while I'm standing in a fairly crowded store holding a pair of drawers smaller than the hanger to which they were attached, but he had to go and use that phrase. I hate that phrase so much I won't even comment on it anymore.
At least their conversation ended on a high note for me. "Yeah, but he's a lot older than this guy. My brother's like 32."
That brought a smile to my 32-year-old full face.
January 12, 2006
Kim Been Fly Since She Was in the Fifth Grade
Is reality television ready for this? I know I am.
Lil' Kim: Countdown to Lockdown will premiere March 9.
To be honest, the more that I think about it, all reality television could be made better with the addition of Lil' Kim. Well, accept maybe Martha Stewart's Apprentice.
I would love to see her and the evil Santino design something on Project Runway. Picture it: an outfit made entirely of fringe and pasties.
Remember the dance-off between the Top Model wannabe and Barney's Beanery trash? The one with the infamous quote "bitch poured beer on my weave?" What if Lil' Kim had been there to have Tiffany's back? Assault with a deadly press-on.
And who thinks the suckfest that was The Amazing Race: Family Edition wouldn't have at least been watchable with the addition of Team Junior M.A.F.I.A.?
What Have I Done To Deserve This?
Pandora is a fun Internet radio tool that "learns" what kinds of music you like based on artists you add and ratings you give to songs it suggests. It's sort of like Launch but without all the commercials (so far).
Look what just escaped from Pandora's box...
Yes, that's right, it's a Lindsay Lohan song from the That's So Raven soundtrack. My indie street cred is dipping into negative numbers now, isn't it?
January 11, 2006
Local Music Makes Me Happy
Congratulations to my buddy Mike who kicked off his record label in 2004 and has already found much success. Today, one of the bands on the kora records, Meredith Bragg and The Terminals, is the Band of the Day at SPIN.com. Check it out.
You can vote on each Band of the Day when you click through to read the whole feature. Based on reader voting, they'll be awarding a Band of the Month and ultimately a SPIN.com Band of the Year. Vote or die, kids. Vote or die.
In other local music news, last night I had the pleasure of catching the Travis Morrison Hellfighters at the Black Cat. I really don't know what to say about these guys. Their music is tight, unique, funky, and a host of other adjectives that will never quite catch it until you hear it. And the thrill of watching someone who's having as much fun onstage as Travis is contagious. Hopefully, they'll have an album out later this year.
Finally, I'm not sure how I missed this Washington Post Sunday Source piece from The Washington Social Club's Martin Royale last fall, but I did. I'm glad I caught it, though--especially this part:
... D.C. rocks harder when the lights go down. We're all in the same rock-and-roll foxhole here, fighting to bring irresponsibility to an overly responsible city. We fight the daylight, we fight our jobs, and we fight peoples' expectations.Which just about sums up why I wear faded blue and red stamps on the back of my hand as badges of glory during a 9:00 AM staff meeting.
January 09, 2006
January 05, 2006
Mark of the Beast
January 04, 2006
Top 5 Song Lyrics of 2005
As most of my friends know, I'm a huge fan of music. While I thoroughly enjoy the ass-shaking brought about by many of my favorite songs, the English major in me has always been partial to a lyric that gets stuck in my head. The following have worn a grove in my brain in the last year. (If you know all of them, you're my new favorite person--or, more likely, one of my old favorites).
"The sky is blue most every day. The lemons grow like tumors. They are tiny suns, infused with sour."
"Stuck in a place that I don't remember. Was it Sunday or last November?"
"This is the first day of my life. I'm glad I didn't die before I met you."
"You look like David Bowie. But you've nothing new to show me."
"All I want is one more chance to be young and wild and free."
and the Worst Lyric from a Song I Love for 2005....
"But out there the world is a beautiful place, with mountains, lakes and the human race."