Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Horse manure. There is nothing, I mean nothing, complicated about the law. Or rather, there is a lot complicated about the law, but the "new" factors discussed do not complicate things in the least. Most rape statutes are explicit that a drunk person cannot give consent, and therefore intercourse with them is STRICTLY RAPE, no matter what they say. And if you think about it, the law could not be otherwise if it were to be in the least bit serious about the idea of "consent". Further, most rape statutes and cases are quite clear that no means no, no matter when it is uttered, or what preceded it.
Cosmo should be ashamed of itself for implicitly spreading disinformation and openly insulting the power of the law. The legislatures and courts of the several states, in their wisdom, have spoken regarding what rape is and is not. Most have also instituted "rape shield" laws, which prohibit admission of evidence of the accusing witness's prior sexual conduct. While there are dire issues regarding proof of rape, as rape trials are often "he said-she said" affairs, implying that intoxication or prior advances by the accusing witness cloud the issue of whether an action is or is not rape is misleading, and indicative of a disregard of the legislature's judgment of what is or is not a crime. Contrary to blogger Jezebel's inane and dangerous assertion that "It's something, "date rape" I guess, but it's not rape unless I say it was, right?" , it's not the accusing witness, or Cosmo, who gets to decide what rape is. That power belongs to the legislatures and the courts.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
For those of you whose eyelids are fluttering in disbelief, she said:I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because, uh, some people out there in our nation don't have maps, and I believe that our education, like such as in South Africa and the Iraq, everywhere like such as, and, I believe that they should, that our education over here, in the U.S., should help the U.S., or should help South Africa, and should help the Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future, for us.
Everything about this clip pisses me off. Not only is her answer one of the dumber things I have ever heard in my life, but her transparently fake smile, her layers of make-up, her overly-rehearsed speaking style, her kiss-ass, fake-humble 'I personally believe' . . . all of it is just awful.
Its entirely possible that I'm reading too much into this, but, as I was running errands this afternoon, I heard a radio advertisement for a new program on MTV called "Newport Harbor." The ad began sentimental background music, followed by a narrator, who said: "For the past three years, you've laughed, you've cried, and you've loved along with the girls of the O.C. Now its time for MTV's next reality drama, 'Newport Beach.'" Then, as the background music swelled to a crescendo, it played a series of brief audio clips from the show, one of which featured a high school girl saying "I'm so going to Europe. I don't care, I'll disown you as my parents if I don't go to Europe."
I would hate these women with every ounce of my fiber and being even if they didn't speak like illiterates, which, by the way, they do. Apparently, our country is so wealthy that, if you are either pretty or rich, you don't have to know anything, or ever work to improve yourself. If you are both pretty and rich, you never have to give a fuck about anybody other than yourself. Those are the rules, or at least they are the rules in southern california. Admittedly, these wealthy bitches of privilege represent just a small part of our society, but this girls, like Paris Hilton, Miss South Carolina, and the girls of the O.C. and Newport Harbor, are simply adored by high school girls in this country. Collectively, they represent much of what is wrong with modern American society. That's just my two cents.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Saturday Night Fever - Travolta Takes Over the Dance Floor
The framing of this video does it no favors; it suffers from the smaller dimensions of the YouTube screen, though Travolta's dancing is electrifying, no matter how you frame it. Saturday Night Fever's music and dancing has become so iconic that I believe the excellence of the rest of the movie has been lost. Anybody with Italian grandparents will recognize aspects of their personality in Travolta's parents, and its protrayal of working-class life in white, ethnic Brooklyn is suprisingly nuanced. One of my all-time favorite minor movie characters is Travolta's older brother, who struggles to reconcile his free will and, (it is implied), his homosexuality with the priesthood vows. If you've never watched the movie in its entirety, you should add it to your NetFlix queue.
Jake and I have loved this since we first saw it in college, in the fall of 2001. If it doesn't make you tap your feet and want to start dancing, then I don't know what to tell you.
Alizee - L'Alize
I don't know much about the French singer Alizee, except that she's absolutely gorgeous, a sexy dancer, and a great singer. She got married at 19, after making only two albums, and, basically, nobody's heard from her since then - she just lives with her husband and is a mother to her child. Good for her and everything, but, come on, Alizee! You owe it to the men of the world to get back out there. If this video isn't enough to convince you, check out her cover of "La Isla Bonita."
Alizee - La Isla Bonita
Friday, August 24, 2007
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Gametrailers.com has been doing an excellent job creating multipart retrospectives on classic videogame franchises like Zelda, Final Fantasy , and Metroid (so far). It's great for nostaglic purposes, and to watch the impressive evolution of these series over twenty years.
After I've retired, I figure I'll pass the time teaching the film course equivalent for videogames at a liberal arts college. This info would be perfect for teaching the young ones their roots.
Monday, August 20, 2007
But this has also foiled me from starting my own Fantasy Business School League, which would have been a great source of amusement. I encourage you to do so in my stead, if possible. I was introduced to the idea last year by a friend in law school. The premise is this: in each academic setting, there are a variety of "characters" and "That Guy"s (see two posts down on Double-Pop) that say annoying things that bother well-adjusted members of the class, or chew up time with useless, inane comments. Making fun of these people is awesome, and can be good for bonding with other people who are internally banging their heads on the desk with these fools open their mouths to let loose their verbal diarrhea. Playing Fantasy Classroom allows you to turn their LAME comments into sheer ENTERTAINMENT.
After about a week of classes to figure out the class pecking order, you and a few other of the Cool Kids secretly have a draft where you select a member for your team based on their likelihood to say something completely ridiculous/useless/drawn out personal story/etc. Set the topic parameters in advance. Now, whenever one of your draftees says something that makes everyone in room 2% dumber, YOU GET POINTS!!!!
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Saturday, August 11, 2007
Friday, August 10, 2007
Another player discussed in Halberstam's book was Paul Westphal, which reminded me of this YouTube video (embedding unfortunately disabled) - it's a recap of Game 5 of the 1976 NBA Championship between the Boston Celtics and the Phoenix Suns, a dramatic triple-overtime classic which is widely regarded as the best game in NBA Finals history. Westphal, a four-time all-NBA player with great skills and creativity, makes particularly sweet shots at 1:51, 5:53, and 6:25; likewise, his steal at 3:21 and his timeout call at the end of the second overtime are up there with Robert Horry on the clutch scale.
The highlight package is an excerpt from a collection called NBA Awesome Endings, which is sadly not available on DVD. I received the video as a gift from a friend for my 8th birthday and proceeded to basically watch it on repeat for the next two or three years. I like it because the highlight packages are produced like the old NFL Films Super Bowl specials - cool footage, overly dramatic narration and music, etc.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
NASCAR Coach Reveals Winning Strategy: 'Drive Fast'
Traditionally, there were different experience levels for rowers: junior, intermediate, senior, and elite. Winning a race in a given weight class and experience class meant that you had to move up a class. Thus, if you won the intermediate lightweight single at a qualifying regatta, you then had to choose whether to contest the senior lightweight single, or the intermediate open weight single, but you could no longer race in the intermediate lightweight division. This system, which we copied from the British, eventually led to an overload in the senior and elite categories, where, slightly above-average rowers (say, the seventh and eighth-best guys in a winning eight-person crew) would have to choose between racing against current and former Olympians in their own experience class, or else competing against considerably larger rowers in a higher weight class. Heavyweights had the worst of it, since eventually they had nowhere else to go but the elite heavyweight class, where they had to race against the Jamie Kovens and Tom Herschmillers of the world.
The downside to Henley's modernization is its bizarre fascination with the 16 & under divisions. The 16 & under eights are always shitty, because no club has eight good rowers who are that young. The 16 & under singles are even worse, because nobody at that age is strong enough or skilled enough to row a 2000 meter course in fewer than eight or nine minutes. Then again, the club for which Jake and I used to row, the West Side Rowing Club, tends to excel in the 16 & under division, so we probably shouldn't look a gift horse in the mouth.
Anyway, if you're into rowing or just into interesting, unusual sports, you should check out the Henley this weekend. If you're in the area, you really can't miss it - just follow all of the tall, fit-looking people drinking Tim Horton's coffee and sporting unusual tan lines.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Also - and this gave me unmeasurable joy - I paid a visit to Record Theater (a famous record store in Buffalo) yesterday, and found that Stapp's solo album was at the front of the $1.99 clearance bin. Awesome.
Thanks for the words: Lawyers, Guns and Money
Tuesday, August 7, 2007
Monday, August 6, 2007
Spinner's Interface is a webcast done jointly by Spinner.com and AOL.com, in which bands play a couple of their songs and give extended interviews about their music and their influences. The songs themselves often sound a little weird, for, though they are technically live performances, they are recorded in an empty studio, making their performances more similar to something from The Charlie Rose Show than, say, Saturday Night Live or The Tonight Show.
Anyway, here are three cool videos from The National's appearance on Spinner's Interface. Check it out:
Mistaken For Strangers:
Our general manager and owner, who last year pledged to be more hands on, are a combined 169 years old. That's the kind of experience you're not going to find anywhere else. How many owners were members of the original AFL ownership AND played a major role in the Teapot Dome scandal? Just one: Ralph C. Wilson, Jr.
Friday, August 3, 2007
Let me just say that the Oregon Brewers Festival is a terrific thing. Each brewery can only bring one beer, the same amount of kegs, and the same number of kegs per day. It puts everyone on an even playing field. You get a mug and wooden tokens. 1 token gives you a few swigs, 4 fills up your tankard. A good time is had by all. And they have totally smart public transportation everywhere so getting home isn't a problem. Smart city design is truly a beautiful thing to behold in action.