Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Say WA???

Washington State has a great new tourism slogan: "Say WA."

Now, other states are probably feeling left out right now, and with good reason. Nothing else will ever compare to a great slogan like Say WA. Still, here are some ideas for you states out there who are looking to spruce up your image.

"Arkansas: AR AR AR!"
"Nebraska: Ow, my NE!"
"Ohio: OH Yes!"
"Delaware: Simply DE Best!"
"Maine: Visit ME!"
"Pennsylvania: Who's Your PA?"
"Wyoming: Why Ask WY?"

The evolution of the 7-11 snack

1968: Hot dog.
1997: Hamburger that's shaped like a hot dog.
2002: Quesadilla that's shaped like the hamburger that's shaped like a hot dog.
2005: Pizza that's shaped like the quesadilla that's shaped like a hamburger that's shaped like a hot dog.
2008: Smoked turkey drumstick that's shaped like the pizza that's shaped like a quesadilla that's shaped like a hamburger that's shaped like a hot dog.
2011: Genetically modified corn that's shaped like the smoked turkey drumstick that's shaped like a pizza that's shaped like a quesadilla that's shaped like a hamburger that's shaped like a hot dog.
2017: Roller-style grill closed for 30 minutes for degreasing.

My new Napster playlist

Napster has a wonderful feature that creates a radio station based upon the songs you've put into your library. It looks at your history, strokes its beard, and says "Aha! I know what Josh would like to hear!"

So what would I like to hear, anyway? This is what Napster decided to dump on my drive. Probably because of that duet at the Grammys when the Boo Radleys were joined on stage by Lil' Flip to sing "Walk This Way."

Backstreet Boys
Bell Biv DeVoe
Beyonce featuring Lil’ Flip
Britney Spears
Celine Dion
Christina Milan
Daniel Bedingfield
Destiny’s Child
Diana Fox
DJ Fury
Escape Club
Jennifer Lopez
Justin Timberlake
Kelli Ali
Me’Shell Ndege’Ocello
Missy Elliott
Romeo Void
S Club 7
Seals & Crofts
Sisqo, Dru Hill
Toni Basil
William Shatner

Monday, March 27, 2006

Squirt hockey

Not 9 and 10 year olds. The proud sponsor of UHL minor league hockey is now...the Fleet Eneman.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Red America

If you know me, you know that I always try to shy away from politics. I just want people to get along and be happy! Except for people who like anything Bush has ever done.

In any event, there's been quite a bit of comment over the past day or two about the fact that the Washington Post has decided to balance their liberal columnists Charles Krauthammer and George Will with someone more conservative, a 24-year-old punk who should be signing up to fight for his beliefs in Iraq instead of being paid for his malformed opinions. He's been at it for two installments now; yesterday he talked about how Democratic ideas and hyperbole are so unpopular that "the floor may be nonexistent." Today he mocked the "ridiculous hyperbole" of liberal commenters.

If you want to see what a "nonexistent floor" really looks like, you might want to check here: the frequently updated digest of polls, showing Bush's approval/disapproval spread. If there's a floor over the past five years, Bush hasn't found it yet. It's like the game of CandyLand we used to play when I was a kid. My sister would stack the deck so that she immediately got to climb the big Tootsie Roll to get to the top, while the rest of us would strategically be placed on the icing flumes any time we got past the first ten squares.

The next time you hear that the left isn't popular, or that people like Bush, or that the Democrats aren't running on any platform but being anti-Republican, just remember that it only becomes true if you act like it is. The truth is that left-of-center views are still a majority in this country when put to question. No one likes Bush - he's extremely unpopular, and opposing him is not a risk to your livelihood the way it might have been in 2002. And if you can actually enumerate the Republican "platform" for 2006, I'd like to hear it.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Chocolate-dipped bunnies

They don't seem to be selling them these days. If you're looking for a delectable snack, why not try chocolate-dipped pork rinds instead?

Prison Pals

After leading Matt, a co-worker, to the Creme Egg story last night, he told me that in Chinatown last weekend, "I popped into a candy store and bought a Chocolate Bunny and, to my dismay, didn't notice that the wrapper actually said Chocolate Dipped Bunny."

I thought, "What the heck. Let's google 'chocolate dipped bunny.'" To make a long story short, one of the top five links goes to the profile of a female prisoner looking for a penpal. She is "like an apple, firm but juicy." And the best part of womenbehindbars.com (Actual site slogan: BACK BY POPLULAR DEMAND!) is that they don't mess around; you can click a button to "Add to Cart", and then when you've collected enough inmates you can "Proceed to Check Out."

Many of the denizens of this world of captive fantasy dates are quite appealing. I am thinking about getting in touch with Teresa, who enjoys "curl-your-toes kisses"--presumably the result of forgetting to take the cigarette out of her mouth first. Angel is an interesting case, as the only known photo of her doubles as a color-blindness test. Linda shows what happens when you shine a flashlight into the hood of a ring wraith. Pamela keeps an excellent house, and will give you a lapdance you will never forget. She's also a counselor for the handy cap.

Of course, it wouldn't be fair to limit the selection to the fairer sex. Many men await your letters as well. There's Witness Protection, Shot-A-Guy-For-Snorin', The Outlaw, Fornicated With Mamma's Skull, and of course Swear I Didn't Do It.

And all this because of a Creme Egg.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Correction: Creme Eggs

Correction: It turns out I wasn't eating a fertilized Creme Egg at all. It was a Snickers Egg. My apologies to Cadbury, and please consider the lawsuit withdrawn.

Easter candy

The Easter candy has started appearing in our local Duane Reade. I picked up my yearly batch of Creme Eggs, gaily presented in a large cardboard bin that is just hauled out and dusted each year. I bit into one, and the texture was off. A bit too crunchy. Then I looked at the remaining half-egg. It was fertilized. There was a candy chicken embryo inside it. I spat it to the ground, gagging, and ran to the nearest hydrant to wash my mouth out.

You know how they say the past it is a foreign country

There's always a good reason to quote British Sea Power lyrics. I've been having lots of visits from the past lately. I just received a nice note from a gentleman named Jim, with whom I conversed 20 years ago on BITNET. Those were the days - hacking together chat machines in Rexx, being banned by a sysop named Hunter because I used the name "Pro-Death" in response to another user who had chosen "Pro-Life," being lectured by "Pro-Life" about how God had forgiven his former homosexuality so He could forgive my actions on BITNET too. Now that I think about it, the past was a foreign country back in 1986 too.

So Jim went to North Dakota State U. back then. The school was one of the early adopters of this pre-Internet technology, allowing people to send communicate without even being in the same room together at the same time! Voice wasn't supported, so we could only type messages and hope that they showed up within a few seconds so that the conversations didn't lose all context. It was truly a wonderful advance over the telephone.

I got to wondering what has been going on up in Fargo recently. I figured that the city has undergone a renaissance since the eponymous movie showed just how exciting it was compared to Grand Forks. The NDSU site actually filled me in about the current goings-on in the great north.

Local Top 10 CD Sales (Updated Weekly):
1. Rage Against the Machine Renegades
2. Wu Tang Clan The W
3. K-Ci & JoJo X
4. Alice in Chains Live
5. Backstreet Boys Black & Blue
6. The Beatles 1
7. Shaggy Hot Shot
8. R. Kelly TP-2.com
9. Master P Ghetto Postage
10. Sade Lovers Rock

Say what you want about its remote location, Fargo remains on the cutting edge of today's hottest trends and fashions! (Go to the page - you can almost see the thought bubble over Mick Jagger's head that says "We've got to get a new booking agent.")

Sunday, March 19, 2006

J&J living the bowel

I've lost my appetite, but this menu is a perfect companion to my Chinese Food Quiz.

Apologies to the F___ family, and more memories

Almost two years ago, I wrote about the Fornispoo, along with some other memories from my childhood.

OK, I made a mistake. I should not have used last names, for one thing. It unnecessarily embarrassed people who were too young to remember incidents that are burned into my memory. Last week, I got some charming feedback on it, which included a spirited defense of Nickelback's talents. I have gone back to the original post and removed last names, because in retrospect I shouldn't have put them in there in the first place. So my apologies on that. I've left two of the comments up and removed the rest, because I have the power to do so! Muahahahaha.

Here are some more memories I have of growing up. I apologize in advance for any of these that aren't true, but the therapy has really messed up my brain, man.

- When I was 7, my mother slammed my hand in the car door as punishment for leaving a fingerprint on the wall of my bedroom.

- Our neighbors had a special room that no one was allowed into. When their parents were out one day, we snuck in and found 350 rolls of expired toilet paper.

- One afternoon, my stepfather made us a tire swing out of an old radial with a nail in it, and some kite twine. It was constructed on a new spring branch of a rotting maple tree, and if you swung high enough you could actually clear the poison ivy underneath and rocket yourself into the street. A few days later, our next-door dad (let's call him "Ted") came over at night and wrapped the tire up onto the tree. We never could get it down again. It's still there today, with years of collected rainwater. It is one of the state's top five disease vectors for West Nile Virus.

- We were invited over to our neighbors for dinner one night. What would we have? Pizza? Chicken fingers? Burgers? No way. They served kidneys. Braised kidneys. That hadn't been soaked long enough, and still had a big membrane on them. Jessica and I ran home in tears, where my mother was making her company dish. Cream of tomato soup, hot dog slices, onions, and broad egg noodles. It was that day where we developed our lifelong love of deviled ham.

- And still, it was better than the Polynesian chicken over canned Irish potatoes we had each week for Wednesday dinner.

- Each year, we went around for Halloween with the kids in the neighborhood. Back then, we could do it when it was dark, not at 2 PM like the punks do now. It was traditional that we would gather a big sack of candy, walk back past our neighbor's house, and their dad would jump out from behind a tree wearing evil clown makeup, take our bags of candy, and chase us down the street until we spit blood. It became a beloved tradition, trying to get home without being attacked and terrorized by Pantsless the Clown.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Random, not-so-funny comments

1. JetBlue now gives you a little snack pack featuring crackers and a cup of processed cheese food. It's called "Havarti cheese spread with Havarti-like flavor." Now, I have no idea how this testing worked. Is there a sliding scale from Roquefort to cheddar? Did they decide that Havarti-like meant "more cheesy than spackle?" My advice: stick with the "egg-like orbs" sold in the terminal.

2. On the drive back from JFK, Duane Reade took to the airwaves. "Ladies, now there's great news on the absorbency front!" Not exactly my realm there, but why was this not covered in the front section of the Times?

Sunday, March 5, 2006

Historical novel idea

So here's this idea for a new historical "what-if" novel I've been working on.

The Revolutionary War is won not by the colonists, but by Britain. As a result, the world in 2006 is quite different than it would have been if the United States had broken away. Actually, it's not. The only difference is that coupons have a cash value of 1/20 p. I'm having problems spinning this thing into 300 pages.


Two questions about Nickelback.

1. Who listens to them?
2. Why do they sound like a Gillette razor ad?