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For the final Thing a Day for this week, I thought to discuss a tweet from David Hines, which relates to my inspiration for the week: Realized something: if Jonathan Coulton's 2006 "Thing a Week" song "Code Monkey" came out today, Coulton would get *eaten alive* for writing a sympathetic portrait of a creepy stalkery […]

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Why I Love Freddie Mercury

 

Freddie Mercury was gay, very gay. That’s not what this post is about, but I thought we might as well recognize that fact right out of the gate. We may end up circling around to it later on.

I love Queen. A few of their songs rank among my favorites; “One Vision” and “Another One Bites The Dust” are up there in the top 50, and “Somebody to Love” has a nice penthouse view from the top 20 alongside Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor and David Crowder Band’s “Only You.” I loved the song “Bohemian Rhapsody” when I first heard it, and got annoyed when Wayne’s World ruined it. But Freddie Mercury was Queen, and when he died so did the band, no matter how much Brian May and Adam Lambert would have you believe otherwise.

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Jim is back! Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America get a kick out of New Yorkers bluntly rejecting Mayor Bill de Blasio’s 2020 presidential bid but it does give Greg an idea of how to thin the 24-candidate field. They also applaud Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai for giving […]

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  This ad leading to the topic was spotted on a facebook trading site. The craft? artform? is easy to ask about on your favorite internet self-education source so I won’t link to anything but the term to use is “Reborn Babies.” Odd that it’s well-established but I never ran across it and I’m not […]

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Spoilers for Season 8, Episode 5. Game of Thrones episode “The Bells” reminded me of the famous Führerbunker scene from Downfall where Hitler chews out his generals for losing the Battle of Berlin. It would have been more satisfying if they actually took a page from Downfall and had Queen Cersei lash out and pin […]

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Sentimental Journey: Doris Day Passes at 97

 

Les Brown and Doris Day (C. 1945)
The most tempting cliche in noting the passing of a celebrity is that a death marks “an end of an era.” Doris Day’s era ended much sooner than she did, but she truly was the last of her kind. She was the last of the great “girl singers” of the Big Band Era, the last of the great musical stars of the Hollywood studio system and the last performer to have headlined a weekly half-hour network radio show.

Rechristened Doris Day because Doris von Kappelhoff was a mouthful and a bit of a stretch for a marquee, she began her career singing on WLW (The Nation’s Station) in her hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio. At that time, WLW had a habit of taking local acts and turning them into national sensations. Besides Day, WLW launched the careers of Rosemary Clooney, Andy Williams, and the Mills Brothers. It was in Cincinnati that she hooked up with Les Brown and his Band of Renown. Their partnership resulted in her first number one hit, Sentimental Journey. 

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Alexandra DeSanctis of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America grab some popcorn as supporters of Sen. Cory Booker blast the media for giving far more attention to Pete Buttigieg, calling the coverage gap the epitome of privilege. They also slam Code Pink for commandeering the Venezuelan embassy in Washington in solidarity with dictator […]

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https://www.bbc.com/news/av/world-us-canada-48071933/the-burlesque-group-reclaiming-indigenous-sexuality Ok…so let me understand clearly. You exploit yourselves so that nobody else can get in there first. You completely copy the “colonizers” formats to express your indigenousness. You didn’t learn this style on the reservation or from elders nor testify whether they approve. The majority culture failed to objectify and lust after you enough […]

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America cheer a much stronger than expected April unemployment report, showing the addition of 263,000 jobs and the lowest unemployment rate since December 1969. They also react to a New York Times report detailing how a second person tried to get George Papadopoulos to admit […]

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In another conversation, some suggested that most movies today are for kids and those who have never grown up. For instance, there are lots of movies with big explosions and special effects, like in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But what is there for adults? Discuss, please. More

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are exasperated as Democrats and the media breathlessly report that Robert Mueller disagrees with Attorney General Bill Barr’s summary of the report since the very same story confirms that Mueller did not find the summary inaccurate. They’re also disappointed as Juan Guaido’s effort to […]

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Well, somebody had to start one. So I volunteered after consulting wiser heads over at the Starship Ricochet group. First, some buffer between the actual spoiler laden discussion prompts and an opening that is itself not spoiler laden, so that the wishes of the spoiler avoiders can be properly respected. First, some music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxVlN-LzIks More

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“Shtisel” is a brilliant Israeli series that follows a family from a conservative Jewish community in Jerusalem. There are no fireworks–just the drama of ordinary lives–but it works well. It’s real, and even disturbing at times, without sinking into fatalism. The characters develop, so I’m glad I stuck it out after the first couple of […]

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Does that look like a photograph? It isn’t — not exactly. It is a product of a modern technique called photogrammetry, which extracts data from photographs to translate real objects into virtual simulations. Such methods of quickly simulating real objects, environments, and people in rich detail are increasingly common in the video game industry.  More

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With the exception of Marvel, my fandom as far as movie franchises is concerned is in a pretty sad state right now. The excellent Lord of the Rings Trilogy was followed by the bloated Hobbit films. The Harry Potter movies are now followed up with the mediocre and misguided Fantastic Beasts films, and author J.K. […]

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There are people that will investigate youThey’ll insinuate, intimidate and complicate youDon’t ever wait or hesitate toState the fate that awaits those whoTry to shake or take youDon’t let them break you More

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Activism As Cult Ritual

 

I took my daughters to a Mexican circus last week. It was a one ring outfit seemingly run by several interconnected families of performers. No nets. Lots of insanely dangerous acrobatics performed with considerable elan. Jugglers. Horses. A solid father-and-son dog act. A couple of genuinely funny clowns acting as curtain jerkers and keeping the crowd entertained while the serious acts changed and recovered. There was cotton candy, funnel cake, face paint, camels, bounce houses, and miniature horses kids could ride. All the things you need to separate marks from their cash – or even a smark like myself.

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A favored televisions series grows on the viewer. One relates to characters, often eventually seeing them as old friends. The end of a favorite series causes a period of mourning of sorts. Not like the loss of a loved on beloved pet, but there is a sense of mourning nevertheless. My wife made an interesting […]

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How does an invincible man respond to a world that would sacrifice him? How do the powerful in society react to a god among us? How does a warrior, birthed by gods for immortal combat, respond to the wars of mortal men? What if a mischievous, parentless 14 year old had super powers? One of […]

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No Movies for Old Men

 

The minute — the very constituent element of the minute, the fleeting second I learned that Netflix made a movie about the lawmen who tracked and killed Bonnie and Clyde, and that Kevin Costner and Woody Harrelson would be playing them as — gasp — heroes, I knew there would be a great wailing. Bonnie and Clyde — they’re legendary! They were, like Robin Hoods. And so good looking! Also, they were media stars, which confers a certain moral authority. Why, Bonnie’s photographs were like proto-selfies or something. That movie was important! Why would you make a movie about the icky old men who committed gun violence on a social critic and a poetess?

Eh. I’m fascinated by the gangster era, but I don’t find any of it romantic or tragic. They were all horrible people who got what they deserved, and didn’t get it soon enough. The Netflix movie, The Highwaymen, commits the terrible sin of telling the story of the Texas Rangers who tracked down Bonnie and Clyde without questioning their own archaic modalities of masculinity, and the gnashing from critics is a joy to read.

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