Two years on Twitter, and all I have to show for it is a bunch of stupid, meaningful friendships with ridiculously talented people.
If I left you off, consider it a unconscionable oversight on my part or maybe this is the push you need to post an avi with your whole head. But to all of you, whether we met two years ago or today: I honestly hope you have as much fun squandering your immeasurably precious time with me as I do with you.
You goddamned pack of degenerates,
First Row: @blaudiablogan, @Hadzilla, @nachosarah, @MaryKoCo, @caricevhouten, @pattonoswalt, @ixSEANxi, @DothTheDoth, @EricDaDadourian, @MostlyPregnant, @WowItsStephen, @TheThomason, @JennyPentland, @MmeSurly, @GreenishDuck, @SeanBlazed, @DadBeard
Second Row: @DJRotaryRachel, @mzeld, @robwhisman, @robfee, @andylevy, @andylassner, @lawblob, @HonkyTonkRobot, @Spotzwoj, @sucittaM, @RoryNotRoy, @fightforfood, @matthewdolkart, @RowdyBowden, @SunnyMabrey, @tylerschmall, @nickwiger, @bazecraze, @thejoshpatten
Third Row: @KarenKilgariff, @JoshMalina, @eliyudin, @ecareyo, @BoobsRadley, @ShittingtonUK, @vladchoc, @DO(G, @MiahSaint, @lanyardtwerk, @sweet_toof, @briangaar, @ashley_barnhill, @NickBossRoss, @Discountdracula, @NicCageMatch, @UncleDynamite, @gneicco
Fourth Row: @pants, @danieleastman, @TheFearBoners, @JoeyPositivity, @bobbyfinger, @LouisPeitzman, @bridger_w, @TheNardvark, @Leemanish, @TurboGrandma, @GriffLightning, @Lisa_Bizzle, @cee_ryan, @MindyFurano, @Smethanie, @ezeddaly, @weedguy420boner, @fart, @BrianBeckner
Fifth Row: @lianamaeby, @janeurysm, @ariscott, @seriouslyemily, @curlycomedy, @Manda_like_wine, @frenchielaboozi, @AaronFullerton, @lafix, @Ahm76, @ceejoyner, @EvanJKessler, @johnfreiler, @UNTRESOR, @IanWearsPants, @BeerBatterBeard, @Chelsea_Elle, @johntoconnor
Sixth Row: @someskirt, @Nickadoo, @ShawnHatosy, @Kalarlis, @glenna_opt, @ChaseMit, @Superfluously, @danCLYNE, @ThatRamosGirl, @coolsexguy, @duplicitron, @diarrhea, @SamuelMoen, @Kendragarden, @MaraWritesStuff, @trumpetcake, @Sassypantssss, @TheBosha
Seventh Row: @senderblock23, @juliadavidovich, @SCbchbum, @RockabillyJay, @ebrawley, @SnarkToast, @CoreyNotKori, @EliTerry, @sgavinesq, @longwall26, @batsly, @asimplemachine, @MarcusTheToken, @TheDairylandDon, @Zackblows, @rachow, @donni, @fleshcake, @kingofalltweets, @KenJennings, @madamezooble
Eighth Row: @m_suit, @butterwolf, @ConorTripler, @giromide, @kramediggles, @Nardster, @markleggett, @AmberTozer, @SeanINCypress, @RexHuppke, @joshy_beck, @hobo_hands, @lazerdoov, @klickitatstreet, @toddmarrone, @Kyle_Lippert, @OhNoSheTwitnt, @BillMc7
Ninth Row: @Glynner85, @primawesome, @Llib_Notlaw, @Mickey_McCauley, @Pauly_Miller, @DeuceRadio, @Ty_Schutz, @SteveHuff, @Busocco, @CockShittington, @TyCutt, @HudsonDickchest, @DrunkSocialite, @MandySlamberg, @iheartsoups
This is amazing but I’m not paying $50 for prints.
The craggy knots along an old oak tree………wind……a hand palms a smooth stone along a flowing river…….wheat………A man turns and whispers ‘character arc’……a curious muskrat scanning a riverbed for lunch…..wheat……wisps of a young woman’s sandy blonde hair….wind……water…….a child’s red wagon vacant atop a suburban lawn.
All in all I give it a hazy recollection of seashells collected at a beach.
As I’ve gotten older I’ve learned to scale back any anger or resentment I may naturally produce when something I don’t like, respect, or understand breaks through and becomes massively popular. I realize this will always happen and I’ve matured enough to know that my opinion doesn’t necessarily mean it’s bad. It’s just not for me. And then I move on.
But every now and then something bothers me to the point where my mood changes whenever I’m reminded of it. Sometimes I’ll see people I like and respect enjoying it, and all of the sudden my perceived reality changes. I lose confidence that I’m a real human on a real planet, living a physical existence of consequence.
The most recent example of this is the song “Some Nights” by fun.
Let’s get the first and most obvious criticism out there: The song is a blatant rip-off of “Cecilia.” If Simon & Garfunkel had blown just a little more money on drugs, they’d be in a courtroom right now rightfully demanding royalties. Now I understand that every popular song is ripping off of something from the past. It’s extremely difficult to present something that people see as unprecedented, especially in the world of pop music. But there are varying degrees of ripping something off. You can be influenced by something, much like Kid A was influenced by a mix of 80’s European techno and classic jazz. You can borrow from something, like Pearl Jam’s ‘Given To Fly’ borrows from Zep’s ‘Going To California.’ Or you can just make a carbon copy and present it as your own, like ‘Ice Ice Baby’ does with ‘Under Pressure.’ This is what Some Nights does with Cecilia. It’s not just the melody, the percussion, or the harmonics. The entire arrangement is exactly the same. They’ve just replaced Simon’s lyrics with Whoa-oh-oh’s.
And that’s another thing. I’m really beginning to hate Whoa-oh-oh’s. This is all Arcade Fire’s fault. When they dropped ‘Wake Up’ on an unsuspecting public, it floored us. It has a chorus so urgent, charging, unyielding, and anthemic it doesn’t even need lyrics. In fact, lyrics would only hurt it. Never before has Oh-ohhhh-oh-whoa-oh-oh meant so much. But now it’s the easiest way for “Indie” bands (and I use quotes because it no longer means Independent. It’s just an arbitrary term applied to music made by people consciously attempting to look poor,) to put their songs in commercials. Anyone seen that Olive Garden commercial? The one about the pasta bowls? The song that, at least in the 30 seconds it plays in the ad, is entirely Whoa-oh-oh’s? I find myself humming that song from time to time. I don’t know who does it, I don’t care to know. The point is I catch myself humming it and instantly think about Olive Garden. It’s effective, and it probably took that band a day to compose. Does that mean it’s good? Of course not. It’s slyly capitalizing on the fact that human beings repeat catchy melodies to themselves in moments of boredom, nervousness, whatever the case, but don’t always remember the words. So why not eliminate the words altogether so that people can mindlessly sing “Whoa-whoa-oh-whoa-ohhhh-oh-whoa” to themselves while they wait for the Olive Garden valet to bring back their Civic? It’s laziness that gets rewarded. It’s not reading the book but getting a B on the book report.
But Some Nights does have lyrics, and this is the main reason I hate the song. The hook of the song, although stolen, is quite anthemic. So this is their anthem song. It contains the line “This is it boys, this means war!/What are we waiting for?” Yeah! Get up and fight! Wait, what are we fighting? The answer to that, unfortunately, won’t be found within the song. In fact the whole thing is a vague admission that he’s bored with what he does for a living, including a line I perceive to refer to the very song he is singing, (“five minutes in and I’m bored again.”) When Bruce Springsteen wrote ‘Dancing In The Dark,’ he was able to present a glossy, commercialized hit about the absolute boredom he felt churning out glossy, commercialized hits. It was clever and surprisingly self-deprecating. I’m not so sure this is fun.’s intention here. The song is all over the place. One moment it’s fighting the world, the next it’s cowering in a corner. I don’t believe this is a clever commentary on the highs and lows of the music industry, or the emotional roller-coaster of our nation’s medicated youth. This is Vague Rock. When you keep your subject matter vague, it can be about anything. This is exactly how Bono can write a hit he first presents as a love letter to his recently-deceased father, and then, a few months later, re-brand it as the official song of the 2004 Tsunami in Thailand. The song is big, catchy, and all about whatever subject will bring it the most exposure. It’s a homing pigeon out to find the YouTube video that will get it on Glee and then off to the Grammys. It’s Amber Rose.
I realize some of you may like the song, and I sincerely don’t mean to offend you. Just give me credit for writing a whole post about why I hate fun. without mentioning the ridiculous way they spell their name. Thank you.
Not every college basketball player has what it takes to become a household name, but a select few resort to the next best thing: Having a name so ridiculous, college fans remember it clearer than the names of certain co-workers or relatives. Here are my top ten favorite REAL college basketball…
Now that the final month of 2012 is nearing a close, we can let our hair down, reflect, and turn our attention from war, economic turmoil, and tragedy to what really counts: Awards.
Here’s a look back at the people, places, and things (or nouns) that shaped the year the “Mayas” called 2012.
STORY OF THE YEAR: AMANDA BYNES’ FALL FROM GRACE
2012 had its share of big stories but none broke our hearts and elicited more emotion than the downward spiral of Amanda Bynes. Following her shocking DUI arrest, millions of Americans took to social media to demand something be done. Americans didn’t agree on much this year, but we all came together on one issue: Amanda Bynes must be kept off the road, get help quickly, and return to movies so we can laugh and smile at her goofy charm once again.
Honorable Mention: Violence
PERSON OF THE YEAR: HERMAN CAIN
2012 will no doubt be remembered as The Year Of Herman Cain. Cain broke the “color barrier” as the first man of Africa-America descent to compete for a major political office (USA President.) He inspired millions of young children to shoot for the stars and follow their dreams so they too can one day lead with the same wisdom and grace as Mr. Herman Cain.
Honorable Mention: The Donald. Love him or hate him, you have to admit he puts butts in the seats.
MOVIE OF THE YEAR: DARK SHADOWS
It may not be garnering the same attention among snooty NY critics as other Oscar darlings (Zero Thirty, Abraham Lincoln, Life Of Pie,) but Dark Shadows had it all. Featuring a fun collaboration between director Tim Burton (Beetlejuice, Dark Shadows) and Johnny Depp (Pirates Of The Caribbean, What’s The Deal With Gilbert Grape,) Dark Shadows treated movie-goers to a dark, funny, quirky, and witty film. Here’s hoping these two artists get together for an encore!
Honorable Mention: Hunger Games. I give it an Incomplete, still haven’t finished watching it :-(
SONG OF THE YEAR: 50 WAYS TO SAY GOODBYE, TRAIN
I know, I know. How can you say any song other than ‘Gangum Style’ was the song of the year? Hear me out. While North Korean rapper Sy may have made the biggest splash with his infectious song/dance craze (the one where you look like you’re riding a horse,) it was the elder statesmen who stole the show in the end. Train proved they weren’t just a 1 hit wonder after their late-90’s mega-smash Drops Of Juniper. The Frisco kids bounced back with a single that was all at once catchy, resonant, fun, and deep. It even featured a hilarious music video featuring David Hasselhoff (The Hoff!) and a mariachi band. I can only hope the boys in Vertical Horizon have something like this up their sleeves in 2013!
Honorable Mention: Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Cyrus
TV MOMENT OF THE YEAR: THE KATIE COURIC SHOW
Let’s face it. Television just wouldn’t be the same without Katie Couric, and 2012 was Katie’s year. She beat out a host of upstart daytime talk show hosts (Jeff Probst, Ricki Lake, Steve Harvey, Youtube clips,) to present the smartest, freshest talk show in years. With all the turmoil over at the Today Show (Anne Curry was fired after it was revealed she had been sleeping with FBI director David Patraeus,) I’m sure Katie is kicking up her heels and having a hearty last laugh. Bravo, Katie!
Honorable Mention: The Queen’s Jubilee. Lost points because it aired so late. Not a fan of the BBC.
TREND OF THE YEAR: SEX
2012 was the year of sex! 50 Shades Of Grey was a best-seller. Magic Mike took it all off. Hulk Hogan made a sex tape. Even America’s Sweetheart Helen Hunt got in on the action, playing a “sex surrogate” in the film The Sex Surrogate. I normally steer away from risque topics, but I must admit it’s good to see America interested in sex again after years of recovery from the Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction.
Honorable Mention: Being a ‘Foodie’, ‘Yelping’ about food or Foodies.
Well that about does it folks. It’s truly impossible to cover everything that goes into shaping a year, but I think I got to most of it. 2012 was very good to me and I hope it was just as good to you. If I had to sum up the year in 3 words, I’d go with “happiness,” “style,” and “the box-office.” But now it’s time to say goodbye, and in the words of Australian singer Gotya, 2012 is “Just Some Year That I Used To Know.” Thanks guys, have a happy 2013!!!
It’s a hypothetical. I’m throwing it out there anyway.
Had there been an existing assault weapons ban, would those weapons have been in the Lanza home?
What do we know?
We know they were. We know they were used by a deranged 20 year old to commit a massacre. A massacre of children. We know they were the property of that young man’s mother who also fell victim at their barrel. We know she purchased them legally.
We know those children never had a chance. They were all hit multiple times with a multi-round clip designed for tactical military assaults. They were killed two, three times over.
Had there been an assault weapons ban in place, would there still be firearms in the Lanza home? Probably. Could legal handguns still be used in a mass shooting. Absolutely. Would the body count remain the same? Possibly. Possibly not. That is where we must begin.
No one can say for sure, but I find it very hard to believe a middle-aged Connecticut mother would be willing to take extra-legal measures to secure an assault rifle. In my opinion, with an assault weapons ban, that rifle isn’t there. The handguns, unfortunately, still would be.
The crime, most likely, would still have been committed. Children would have died. But if you’re going to rule out even mentioning the possibility of a smaller death toll due to an absence of automatic firearms, then you’re too far removed to comment. Unless you’re willing to admit you don’t really see the difference between 1 or 2 fewer fatalities in a shooting, perhaps you’re not truly ready to take a stance. Even the smallest change counts.
I’m not a gun owner, but I know people who are. They aren’t lunatics. They aren’t ticking time-bombs waiting to go off. They’re people. People who enjoy something I don’t. They’re responsible, cautious, and accountable. This isn’t about taking guns away from people.
It’s about the wiggle room we have to make this country safer. It’s about the middle-ground we can reach without alienating a huge portion of the nation. It’s about the one, two, or hopefully many more that might survive this society’s unavoidable acts of madness. We aren’t gun-nuts or tree-huggers. We’re all people that just want to go to the movies without the nagging thought of being murdered in our seats creeping around in the backs of our minds.
We were ready for this discussion after Columbine. It never came. Now we’re losing 6 year olds. For all our passion, fire, ambition and work ethic, do we really not have a breaking point? Is even the murder of children something to take sides on?
We’ve done enough talking. Now it’s time to listen to each other. Work thoughtfully towards an agreement. Negotiate rationally. Argue intelligently, not loyally.
We’ll never eliminate insanity. We’ll never be 100% safe. We can, however, be safer than we are now. Even the smallest change counts.