The Incestuous Showbiz Dep't: Okay, okay... here's the obligatory Rance link. And before you ask any more questions about his guess-which-celebrity-I-am blog, read this Reuters interview.
Omphaloskepticism & blog teeshirts: I'm too sexy for my blog, Blogger, Blogger im Raum, I'm moblogging this (uploading photos from a mobile camera phone to a moblog) and I'm blogging this. [Update: The BLOG, I blog at work, I got fired for blogging, Q: Was it good for you? A: Read my blog, blog hand sign, Nobody reads my blog, Technorati, Bloglines, BlogPulse, BlogShares and Be nice to me, or I'll blog you.]
The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy is currently being made into a major motion picture. The production company has created a blog, which now contains a self-interview with writer Karey KirkPatrick. Cool.
The New Yorker deigns to notice blogs. Isn't that cute.
Things that make you go "hmmm": WhiteHouse.gov is the online home of America's president.
WhiteHouse.net and WhiteHouse.org are satirical websites.
WhiteHouse.edu has been cybersquatted.
WhiteHouse.com is porn.
James Baldwin quote: "One writes out of one thing only—one's own experience. Everything depends on how relentlessly one forces from the experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give."
Okay, which one of you smartasses posted this on the men's room wall?
Magic Eye Image of the Week: I could never get those 3D shapes to appear, until I found this site. Cross your eyes and hope for the best.
Latin-flavored excerpts from today's featured artist - David Byrne:
I miss America
And sometimes she does too
And sometimes I think of her
When she is fucking you
—Miss America [from the Feelings album]
I'm workin' real steady
I'm workin' real hard
I'm building a monster
In my backyard
—Marching Through The Wilderness (Charanga) [from Rei Momo]
Gukanjima - View of an Abandoned Island. Breathtaking photographs by Saiga Yuji.
Stalin World has opened in Lithuania. The facility—part amusement park, part open air museum—is circled by barbed wire and guard towers, and dotted with some 65 bronze and granite statues of former Soviet leaders Vladimir Lenin and Josef Stalin, and assorted communist VIPs. ...
Some canned-mushroom mogul spent a million bucks to build this place. What the hell was he thinking?
Geez, I love the Brits: MI5 advised spies not to use sex, Nuclear attack? Wear stout shoes, Cold war bomb warmed by chickens and UK pondered suicide pigeon attacks.
1) Pens are mightier than swords.
2) Swords get beaten into ploughshares.
3) Ploughshares can demolish perfectly good pens.
Is this a Rock/Paper/Scissors kind o' thing?
[Also: check out the upcoming Southwestern U.S. Pro-Am Invitational R/P/S competition.]
Australia licks the problem: Harry Potter postage stamps.
Bill Gates has jumped on the blog bandwagon. Finally. It's fun to see how the Gatester explains blogging for CEOs. [Little-known fact: the term "weblog" was invented on February 18, 1998.]
Coopting pop culture: 10,000 volts in your pocket, guilty or innocent. [Detail.] Fragging Apple's iPod campaign.
And Michael Moore felt and looked so good at the Cannes film festival until he ran into that Kerry bitch in the same frock.
Study: Breast Baring Popular in 1600s. [And 1700s, 1800s, 1900s, 2000s.]
Blogging, 1804 Style: The Journals of Lewis and Clark.
L.A. Times, on Fahrenheit 9/11: An Alternate History of the Last Four Years. And here's the Mike Luckovich political cartoon mentioned.
Jefferson: a state of mind. There have been many attempts at forming a new state comprised of northern California and southern Oregon, but none has gained so much attention and retained it as the secession movement of 1941.
The semio-grads: how we derive meaning from context. Hey, if studying semiotics is good enough for Rick Moody, Jeffrey Eugenides, Ira Glass, Todd Haynes and Christine Vachon, it's good enough for me.
Andy Kaufman returns! And he's blogging! Yeah, right.
Google IPO Swami: Guess Google's IPO price and win shares in the company.
For Screenwriters, Inspiration Smells Like French Roast: One day about six years ago, I tried working on our book's screenplay in a Studio City coffee shop, but the self-consciousness was overwhelming. It felt like I was making a pompous public statement: "Hey, look at me - I'm writing a script!" You could almost hear the other patrons snickering into their lattés.
These days, I like to write while wandering up through the Angeles Crest: I can usually get six or seven pages from the notes I scribble on scraps of paper during a four-hour hike. The squirrels laugh and point at me, but I don't really give a shit.
Michael Moore is at it again. Thank God. Fahrenheit 9/11 could light fire under Bush, and the BBC has a roundup of several reviews. [Update: Less is Moore, by Roger Ebert.]
Nick Berg's Killing: 50 Fishy Circumstances, Contradictory Claims, and Videotape Anomalies: Was the decapitation carried out by Arabic terrorists... or westerners?
Advanced Photoshopping: JolieBot, in Worth1000's recent Celebrity Cyborgs competition, is pretty darn impressive. However, the challenge of melding two television shows produced an instant classic, DickVanDesi.
John Kerry's daughter promotes her film using Cannes' time-honored method: a display of nipples. [Update: the Sun's page expired, so here's a more... um... comprehensive link.]
Fresh from the Frog. The WB television network currently advertises non-rerun program episodes as "fresh." This is just plain silly.
Kumquats might be fresh. Vaginal douches are fresh. The perv who dry-humped Aunt Bee on the bus was fresh.
But TV shows aren't fresh. Especially The WB's.
[Reminder for The Dubya-Bee: To many people, "fresh from the frog" means a sneaky amphibian has just crapped in their hands.]
Kingsley Amis (1922-1995) gets credit for this: "Any proper writer ought to be able to write anything, from an Easter Day sermon to a sheep-dip handout."
Polari, the anti-language. Who used it? Mainly gay men, although also lesbians, female impersonators, theatre people, prostitutes and sea-queens (gay men in the merchant navy).
For me, the most interesting example is this King James Bible produced by the Manchester (UK) house of The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.
Don't Change Horsemen In The Middle Of An Apocalypse: Excellent political image from BettyBowers.com. And Kurt Vonnegut hits the nail on the head, with Cold Turkey.
How do you pronounce J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter books? (ROLL-ing) And Ixtlan, Oliver Stone's film company? (IKST-lan) Okay smarty-pants, how about that Gawker/Defamer editor, Choire Sicha? (COR-ee SEE-kuh) [Other resources: VOA, Asian, mispronounced, general.]
» posted by Anikó Jolán Bartos (AW-nee-ko YO-lan BAR-toesh)
The Prince of Denmark gets hitched (photos). No, Yorick was not his best man. Rumor has it that Fred and Mary want kids. HUGE kids.
Meet Anton Chekov. Improv Everywhere pulled it off. Funny as h*ll. [But the latest reports claim they're currently being sued for defamation of character by the dramatist's estate.]
Jailbait Redux: Charlotte Church, the gifted young Welsh soprano who turned 18 in February, has sold millions of records. But perhaps her most significant claim to fame was winning Britain's Rear of the Year award two years ago, when she was only 16. [2004's ROTY will be announced next Wednesday.]
Uncle Andy's Fun Afterlife: Twenty years later, dead or alive, will Andy Kaufman return? [House of Blues, this Sunday]. Related sites: Tony Clifton and Comic Relief.
Eww: I dropped everything and held my breath. This could not be happening. This was not my life. I began panting, all alone in a locked cubicle in a half-decent restaurant with a dead tapeworm hanging out my ass. [...]
Cannes Film Festival, May 12-23: This is the year of either Michael Moore or Jailbait.
Yes, I'm working on a theme...
...which was picked up in yesterday's Defamer [twice, if you count this blind item]. ;
On a dark desert highway / cool wind in my hair / warm smell of colitas / rising up through the air.
Mathematical Analysis Of Jailbait Talent: The Olsen Twins vs. Lindsay Lohan. In their first big rôle, on Full House, The Olsen Twins (currently appearing in New York Minute) played one character. On the other hand, Lindsay Lohan (now headlining Mean Girls) starred as twin sisters in her breakout movie, The Parent Trap.
This means Lindsay worked four times as hard (in creating two characters) as either Mary-Kate or Ashley (who created ½ character each). Ergo, each Olsen must be 25% as talented as Lohan:
2.0 ÷ .5 = 4 times the work; or .5 ÷ 2.0 = .25 the talent
However, Mary-Kate and Ashley have a 19-day lead over Lindsay in the 18th-birthday department (Lohan:July 2, 2004; Olsens:June 13).
Plus they're TWINS, fergawdsake. ;-)
[Update - Defamer likes us, they really like us! Sick bastards.]
JAZZfolio.com: these Flash caricatures, by illustrator Alastair Graham, capture the features, personalities, lifestyles and reputations of the most famous names in jazz.
How the Word Gets Around. The blogosphere has a strange ability to push a seemingly obscure idea into the forefront of people's minds in a heartbeat.
Also, research shows that the most-read weblogs aren't necessarily the ones with the most original ideas. Authors of popular blog sites regularly borrow topics from lesser-known blogs - and they often do so without attribution. For example, when a meme infects at least 10 blogs, 70% of those bloggers do not provide links back to the blog that had previously mentioned the idea.
Okay, okay, I stole all this stuff...
World's Best Mom - and Dad! A couple has been ordered not to conceive any more children until the ones they already have are no longer in foster care.
Gosh, just when we all thought Courtney Love had a lock on the WBM title...
China shuts 8,600 cybercafes because the Net might corrupt young minds.
In related news: China pulls plug on blogs.
The 9th of May is Europe Day. After finding out why, have a look at the poster gallery; my favorite is from 1998.
Tomorrow is also Mother's Day!
There are many stories related to the sinking of the Titanic, and some have only recently come to light, due to the success of Cameron's film.
For example, most people are unaware that back in 1912, Hellmann's (Best Foods) Mayonnaise was manufactured in England, and the Titanic was carrying 15,000 cases of this condiment. The shipment was scheduled for delivery in Veracruz, Mexico, which was to be the next port of call for the great ocean liner, after leaving New York City.
The Mexican people, eagerly awaiting delivery, were disconsolate at the loss - so much so that they declared a national day of mourning which is still observed today.
It's known, of course, as...
...Sinko de Mayo.
Monumental Sculpture: Budapest's Lanchíd--Chain Bridge--was the first stone bridge (opened in 1849) to be built over the Danube and is the most famous, with its lion statues. Count István Széchenyi decided to build a permanent crossing after having to wait a week to cross the river to bury his father. Today, nine bridges span the river from Buda to Pest, but this is not a posting about bridges.
On the Lanchíd's Buda side is a small park named after the famous British engineer who helped construct the bridge. Clark Ádám Square not only serves as the lower terminus of the Castle District Funicular (in which you can ascend to the Royal Palace), but also contains Hungary's Zero Kilometer Stone (by László Molnár, 1953, limestone, 2m), the marker from which all Magyarország highway distances are measured.
Photos from the Hungarian EU celebration, by Balázs Ludvány. I especially like the Erzsébet Bridge water polo/waterfall display. Also, [origo]'s news website has several slide shows; their first one ("Indul az időkerék," under "Képgaléria") features the TimeWheel, a giant disk-shaped hourglass weighing 60 tons. Its 7 tons of sand marks the beginning of Hungary's EU membership and will take 1 year to fall from the top chamber into the bottom. Over 26 feet in diameter and 8 feet thick, this hourglass (yearglass?) is built to last, with red granite, stainless steel and bulletproof glass.
AmEx One Hour Photo spot. Noted film director/perfectionist Martin Scorsese makes me laugh, every time: "What was I thinking? What was I thinking?! This is not working. I shoulda got the bigger pony, because it doesn't read. Ah, my nephew. 'Say cheese'... good direction, Marty. Here. This one. Interesting. It's far too nostalgic. What do you think? [Clerk: «It's pretty!» Long silence.] How could I have done this? I've lost the narrative thread. Unavoidable, gotta re-shoot. Hey Timmy. It's your Uncle Marty. How'd you like to turn five again?"
Sky Ear will be a one-night event (tomorrow @ 7pm, London time) in which a glowing "cloud" of mobile phones and helium balloons is released into the air so that people can dial into the cloud and listen to the sounds of the sky.