Category Archives: society

5 more years until I cry on your shoulder in a park

There’s this new study out in the UK that states that men get really depressed around 35 and then don’t snap out of it until they are approximately the age of Ted Knight when he starred in “Too Close for Comfort”. Also, it reveals such shocking medical disclosures that most men count their college years (18-24) as being the best years of their life. Shocking!! I only have a different buddy mention that to me about 3 times a day since we graduated college.

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According to this study things don’t look up until you have Jim J. Bullock living below you.

Anyway, by far the best thing about this article is the picture the Daily Mail used to portray a depressed man. I don’t who this actor is but man he is good! Getty Images needs to lock him down to an exclusive contract. I love the forlorn look he has on his face. I bet you he was feeding pigeons prior to this picture being snapped reminiscing about the time he walked in on his wife having relations with 2 members of the early 90s R&B trio “Guy”. I want to mainline some paxil in his body and get the poor guy a lap dance with a kraft of Jack Daniels. He’s probably being comforted by his sister in the picture…that makes it even more depressing….

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“Paxil is a hell of a drug”

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“It was the two guy on the ends”

Is it possible to belong to more social networks than have actual friends?

Facebook and the boy genius du jour, Mark Zuckerberg are prominently featured on the Newsweek cover this week. In the past several months Facebook has become the darling of the tech world due mostly to its “Applications” feature and Silicon Valley needing a new starlet after YouTube was acquired by Google. The most influential blog publications have gushed incessantly about Facebook and are following its every move like a TMZ paparazzi. It’s like a schoolgirl’s first crush with a bevy of enthusiastic proclamations such as “Look how cool it looks on my iphone!” or “They have a RSS Facebook newsfeed!”. That’s ultra cool according to Mike Arrington of TechCrunch who is beginning to remind me of James Spader’s character from Pretty in Pink, which I guess would make me” Ducky” since I don’t have any juice or popularity whatsoever. “Ultra cool” is a term I have not heard since my I wore “Hammer” pants and my main mode of transport was a pogo ball. Then again the Sith Lord of Silicon Valley does count the Pussycat Dolls, My Chemical Romance and the Black Eyed Peas as his favorite musical acts, so if the Hammer pants fit….

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Admittedly, I too have jumped on the bandwagon (probably after reading about all the hype in TechCrunch) and started to favor the site in lieu of the stoic LinkedIn for building my network and trolling for my dream gig. Late at night I have caught myself adding ridiculous applications that are of little consequence and fleeting amusement. Inner thought to myself: “I’m sure that XYZ company is going to love that I added the “Arrested Development Application!” Pathetic, yes I know. I do find it amusing that the royalty of the tech world have now latched onto a site that was beloved by millions of binge drinking college students for quite some time now. In fact, I recently noticed that my three sisters residing in the 3rd world of Trinidad & Tobago have been using Facebook religiously for the last several years. Maybe these Caribbean islanders should hold a conference filled with dudes in ill fitting khakis and blue shirts (this portion of joke stolen from Valleywag) who twitter about the fact there is a “hottie” at the Looksmart booth passing out schwag. That’s a shoutout to my friend Kaley Dobson who will indeed be manning the LookSmart booth at the Trekkie convention aka Search Engine Strategies in San Jose this weekend, and was actually in a movie called “Hotties”.

SEOs rejoice that there will be at least one good looking girl at SES this year and that they can Twitter from the Google Dance on their iphones.

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Yesterday, it was also revealed that Kickapps had received an additional$11 million dollars in funding in an effort to become the market leader in the increasingly competitive “white-label” social network world. I have fiddled around with both Kickapps and Ning and they are both pretty easy to use, especially for a non-programmer such as myself. One must wonder if a “long tail” of social networks is something that will hold any stickiness to its members. I mean do I really need need a social network for my kickball league or book club? I guess it works for companies who would like to add an SNS to their corporate websites but how much utility and benefit does it really bring? Only time will tell, I guess. After being in Big Sky, Montana for five days last week sans Internet access I found the best and most enjoyable social network is still the old school variety. The kind where I am surrounded by my best friends in the world and I can buy a round of drinks and talk some ish.


Loss for Words

Sometimes things do not require an explanation or as Nigel Tufnel eloquently stated in Spinal Tap, “the authorities thought it best left unsovled.” Panda found this gem below. Feel free to chime in how this video makes you feel. Personally, I am still in a state of shock, joy,disillusionment, etc.

That Barack Obama gets a lot of tail….

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I am a huge proponent of Chris Anderson’s Long Tail heory to such an extent that my co-workers roll their eyes at my constant utterance of the phrase. The long tail contends that businesses with distribution power can sell a greater volume of items at small volumes than of popular items at large volumes. It is the methodology that is the driving force behind such companies as Netflix, Ebay, iTunes and Google Adwords. It also serves as a social theory in that our tastes are becoming much more diverse and niche in nature. For example, the highest rated TV show today has about a third of the audience as in the 70s and 80’s. This is not because people are watching less TV, but rather than watching a uninspired sitcom on network TV, I now maintain the ability to watch an episode of “Flight of the Conchords” on HBO followed by “The Bronx is Burning” on ESPN. BTW, I’m already hooked on the latter. Who can resist John Tuturro aka “The Jesus” from The Big Lebowski playing Billy Martin ( I accidentally typed in Ricky Martin at first…think about him managing the Yanks) and the constantly sweating Oliver Plath doing the worst George Steinbrenner possible. Regarding “Conchords”, would a show featuring two indie rock kiwis living in Williamsburg playing synthesizers ever engender an loyal audience during the days of “Dallas”?

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So what in tarnation does this have to do with the smoothest brother to hit the scene since Billy Dee or a young Eric LaSalle in “Coming to America”? A great deal actually. While attempting to sweat off the extra 15 pounds of lard on my frame I happened across an article in Time called, “Obama’s Viral Marketing Plan”. It appears that Obama has been utilizing a “long tail” strategy in his fund raising activities. Traditionally, a great deal of campaign funds are garnered in huge chunks of money from captains of industry. Bush Jr. set records by relying on corporate bigwigs who would be responsible for pulling in amounts upwards of $200,000 for which they would receive a Condaleeza Rice bobblehead and a commemorative plate of the moment when Dick Cheney found out he had sired a lesbian. Dubyas strategy falls right in line with the conventional 80/20 rule however, Barack’s strategy is right out of the long tail playbook. For instance, he maintains over 9500 volunteers which include diverse folk such as school teachers, factory workers and housewives. These volunteers have committed to hosting individual fund raising web pages for the smooth talking Democrat. In fact, more than half of 10 million of Obama’s second quarter contributions were made online and 90% of them were in increments of $100 or less. That is pure long tail working its magic, contradictory of the increasingly outdated pareto principle. I do not really fancy myself to be the political type and those I have encountered with political ambitions tended to be amongst the most disingenuous and shiftiest people I have ever encountered. However, if Obama’s fund raising strategy is indicative of the fresh approach he will bring to the Oval Office, I believe he is worth a very close second look. Perhaps, the almost diametrically opposed strategies of the Bush and Obama camps is a metaphor for something larger; one welcoming and open while the other is fueled by its exclusivity and secrecy. Actually, screw them all, I’m voting for Al Sharpton based strictly on his hair.

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Why I love LA or at least like it…

Yesterday, I was in LA for the Decemberist concert at the Hollywod Bowl and was reminded why La La land,while annoying and overbearing to many, never fails to be entertaining and completely amusing.

4:35 pm – Met up with Andy at Whole Foods in West Hollywood to discuss a couple of ideas to improve our respective blogs. I think they were at least 30 soap opera actors in the store at all times. It’s the only grocery store where more than 50% of the cashiers could be on the verge of landing a pilot or have a script in development. Andy got excited when he got to snap a pic of an Olsen twin wearing what seems to be the carcass of an ostrich and boxer briefs. After our meeting I made a decision to do more cardio at the gym.

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6:15 pm – Had dinner with Kathleen at Cha Cha Cha. Great tapas and mojitos. Our waitress looked like she was straight out of the L Word. Kathleen thought she looked like a participant in America’s Next Top Model. The one they make cut their hair which inevitably causes a nervous breakdown and the world’s most annoying human aka Tyra Bank’s telling us about her confronting her fear of dolphins.

7:30 – Almost get into an altercation with a scalper who accused me of trying to steal his “leads” because I had two extra tics I needed to unload. Then he tried to broker a deal with me. I ended up selling to his leads. Felt kind of guilty at first, but then decided that capitalism was at work. The scalper looked like Bushwick Bill. I remind myself to never work his corner against out of respect for the man that brought us “My Minds Playing Tricks on Me” and “Damn it feels good to be a Gangsta”.

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8:15 pm Band of Horses performs first. They are pretty good live, sort of like a Shins/My Morning Jacket sound. I don’t rave about many things however, I could enjoy myself at the Hollywood Bowl even if subjected to the horror of a Carlos Mencia/Dane Cook double bill. The place is nothing short of fantastic in the summer. Andrew Byrd comes on next and I am impressed. He switches between playing the violin, guitar and whistling. This dude has more talent in his clavicle than I have in my entire body. I kind of want to punch him. The Decemberist come on next and their sound blends perfectly with the LA Philharmonic. I thought the Arcade Fire were dramatic, but these guys are hardcore thespians. The type that sat at the end lunch table in the high school cafeteria and always seemed to be laughing and having more fun than anybody else while in school. I am pretty sure the organist teaches high school music in her spare time. (Actually Kathleen said that) Their artistic flair annoys these two guys sitting in front of us to the extent their immediately get up and leave. I loved these guys “Alice in Chains” retro look. I am pretty sure Eric Stolz would play the guy on the left in a TV movie. The best part was that they shared a bucket of popcorn the entire time.

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11:oo pm – As we speedwalk in a desperate attempt to beat traffic, we see a brother and sister duo covering “Dark Side of the Moon” on the sidewalk complete with flashing lights and synthesized electronic audio enhancements. They are awesome and can’t be a day over 15. I think the dude is dressed like some sort of wizard. It puts a smile on my face. I give them a buck for their efforts.

11:20 pm – Hollywood and Highland is a nightmare. I can’t believe tourist get tricked into coming here and they end up taking pictures of Lorenzo Lamas’ star on the Walk of Fame. This deserves its own column. I truly think this area might be hell on earth.

12:00 pm – Listen to Ryan Adam’s new album Easy Tiger on the way home. (see below) It’s good, sort of “dad rock”, but good. Ryan Adams gets a lot of flack but anybody that dated Parker Posey is cool in my book. Man that kid in the wizard outfit was cool……

Bloggers who live in glass houses should not throw stones or iPhones for that matter..

The author of Misanthropy Today has developed a severe distaste for all things Apple. Most of his venom has been saved for the misguided “sheep” he feels have been connived into “needing” products that are inferior and overrated due to Apple’s irresistible marketing campaigns. Undoubtedly, most consumers who buy a MacBook Pro will never use it for pusuits more ambitious than surfing the Internet. An even larger contingent are most likely a tad bit overzealous in their collection of iPods and associated accessories for different activities and functions. (car, gym, bowel movements, reincarnation, etc.) However, the aforementioned argument is full of inconsistencies, and lacks a general cohesiveness often displayed by blathering, right wing pundits such as Bill O’Reilly and Rush Limbaugh whose main aim is to provoke. The author is quick to condemn and criticize without offering any discernible solutions or suggestions, thereby making the grave error of failing to look in the mirror. The expression “To thine own self be true” has never been more pertinent and fitting in this case. Unwittingly, he is guilty of the same hypocrisy and transgression that plagues the ignorant, Trey Anastacio worshipping, peace loving, neo-hipie who proudly rocks a Che Guevara t-shirt. The following is the first of a 2 part series that examines this bitter individual’s entertaining yet flawed logic:

  • Et tu Brutus? The author would have us believe he is holier than thou, leading a Howard Roark/Ted Kascyzski like existence devoid of any of the influences of pop culture and US Weekly. Look closer however, and we see the author is just as guilty to the influences imposed by Madison Avenue. Except given his camo capris, soccer jersey and Diesel kicks perhaps the author resides in the far classier demographic that is partial to dancing up a storm to the latest, Tiesto anthem in an Ibiza nightclub while splitting another “mollie” with his “mate”. I’ll spend my time drinking Stella, listening to the new Interpol album in my friend “Dave’s” well decorated apartment any day of the week rather than being knee deep in foam while some ass clown waves a union jack to the pulsating beat of Paul Van Dyk.

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  • “Dave” drives a rabbit while utilizing a sidekick and listening to Wilco and Belle &Sebastian – If anybody can find me a male of this description; then they can surely direct me to the island paradise where Biggie, Tupac, Sasquatch and the Lochness Monster reside. (Perhaps, that explains the affinity for B&S given the Scottish roots of the band). Maybe, it’s just me but I equate VW rabbits with the standard hot blond chick from 80’s films, a sidekick with coke infused heiresses, and Wilco, well with people of tremendous impeccable taste. This cartoonish mashup of David Cross meets Hayden Panettiere crossed with a CNET correspondent is amusing but laughable when dissected.

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  • Equating a fondness for Wilco to being herded like sheep – Now, I understand Wilco is a critics darling and beloved by the indie/hipster set, and yes, that’s them on the new volkswagen commercials. However, I challenge anybody to listen to any album in the Wilco catougue, and then arrive at the conclusion that this band is part of the same slick marketing machine brings us the Duff Sisters and My Chemical Romance . Watch the documentary, “You are Trying to Break my Heart” and tell me this was all part of marketeers plan to get the band dropped from Reprise, only to rise from the ashes as a sparkling indie rock Phoenix. If it was pure propaganda, then kudos to the marketing Svengali that oversaw this strategy. FYI…“Sunken Treasure” is an equally compelling DVD of Jeff Tweedy’s tour through the Northwest.

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  • Additionally, I have a few pointed questions for the author:
    • In lieu of an iPod what do you use as your MP3 player of choice?…let me guess you only listen to vinyl right…that’s not pretentious
    • By “Thinking Different” did that compel you to have such carefully crafted MySpace page? and oh yeah… that Jem song on your profile is also a Noxzema commercial. Wouldn’t it have been much more legit to stick with Friendster?
    • I just re-read the author’s initial post and there are so many flaws in misanthropy’s argument that this is going to require a part 2 that will be posted tomorrow. Same Bat time, same bat channel.

Let the iPhone Games Begin!

IphoneAndy from Misanthropy Today has a hilarious post about what a bitter man he is and how much he hates the iPhone and the people that crave it. Apparently, he also hates babies.

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Be on the look out for my counterpoint coming tonight “You’ll like me even less once I steal your girlfriend and text her with my iPhone.”

Also Valleywag has their usually snarky take, although it pales in comparison to the rant above.