Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Do you know what this is?

That's right. It's a mug, woven of crispy bacon filled with melted cheese. If there is a heaven I imagine this is involved in some way..

Monday, November 23, 2009

Jay Mohr Gives Awesome Tracy Morgan Impression, Anecdote

It's a few minutes long, but it's incredible. PCP is smoked, shirts are removed, waiters punched. Tracy Morgan is my hero.

UPDATE: I almost forgot, then at the very end he goes into a dead-on Colin Quinn. I forget that Jay Mohr can be really funny.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

A Cruise Down Memory Lane

Guy Mariano from the Mouse video. You gotta love this. Great skating and great music...

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Folio Society

I always find it to sound like an over reaction when people speak of "the death of print". Sure with the interwebs, the digitizing of newspapers and the rising popularity of products like "Kindle" it feels sometimes like the printed word is being edged out, but I don't see how real books could ever become passe. As objects they are immensely satisfying; to me just the weight, the smell, the simple action of turning the page to see what is next can't be beat. The beauty of a well made, well designed book in my mind has a certain charm that digital media is unable to replicate. Sure "Kindle" may make reading a little easier but these days if easy is what you're looking for you can probably just go see the movie remake of the book you want to read anyway. The Folio Society seems to get what people who love books want and have published an impressive and beautiful catalogue of titles so far to help remind us why real printed books are so special. I mean just look at Sam Weber's cover and inside illustrations for "Lord of the Flies." Digital media just can't compete with this...

And here is a mess of other beautiful hardcovers The Folio Society has released. It really is impressive how consistently good their designs are...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

New York Post: Genuine Class part II

As my esteemed colleague has pointed out the New York Post is a shining beacon of journalistic integrity, a true national treasure. For those of you who don't live in New York and aren't able to enjoy the wacky headlines the Post specializes in, here are just a few examples of the Post's unique brand of subtle, highbrow editorials...

Ok, the newspaper is a total rag with absolutely nothing to offer save crazy right-wing rants about how Reagan was the second coming of Jesus or how Hillary Clinton is the devil incarnate, but I have to give them a little credit for making me crack a smile every morning...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

R. Crumb gets biblical...

About a month ago Robert Crumb released a new comic that I am quite excited to read, an illustrated version of...The Book of Genesis?
The Big Guy Upstairs

That's right, the comic world's most famous misanthropic grouch is tackling religion in a fully illustrated version of The Old Testament's story of creation. And why not? Sounds like God in the Old Testament was one hell of grouch too. It looks like the whole catalogue of old favorites are in this book, from Adam and Eve and the garden of Eden to Noah's Ark to Sodom and Gomorrah (you know that's gotta be good) to the Tower of Babel. It's a greatest hits of creationism!

The Big Bang as described by religious types

Upon first hearing about this project I immediately thought it smacked of gimmickry. The most famously raunchy comic artist does the Bible, it sounded too forcibly subversive just for the sake of shock value. After reading many reviews of it, however, I am really looking forward to getting ahold the thing. The general consensus seems to be that Crumb has taken the tales of Genesis, stripped them of their "sacredness" and presented them as straight up stories that he tries to make entertaining in their own right. Where some Christians and Jews may find offense is in how Crumb is apparently interested in presenting God, Adam, Eve and the rest of the cast of characters as just people. Ugly, dirty people who have roles in this neat story called The Old Testament, which is a new and I think interesting take on these fables. If the critics are to be believed his approach works quite well and apparently makes for some gripping drama and some surprisingly moving stories lines.

Now I have no interest in Judaism or Christianity so this method of toning down the religion and turning up the story really appeals to me. I also am simply interested to see a comic that took Robert Crumb 5 years(!) to make. I'll get back with a review of my own sometime soon hopefully, till then here's some further reading...

Howdy Y'all!

Ever wish you could talk like a crusty old 1840's prospector? Me too! Here is a list of slang from the Old West to get us started towards our goal of being genuine, grizzled frontier folk!

To Dadburn
Function: verb
Definition: to curse
Etymology: ; "Dad” is a substitute for “God” in turn-of-the-century Southern U.S. vernacular. “Godburn” certainly sounds like Old-Testament-style divine retribution; ie, to curse.
Use it in a sentence: “Dadburned boll weevil done ‘et my crop!”

To Hornswoggle
Function: verb
Definition: To embarrass, disconcert or confuse.
Etymology: Belongs to a group of “fancified” words popular in the 19th century American West, invented to ridicule sophisticates back east. (Funny, it didn’t quite work out that way.)
Use it in a sentence: “I’ll be hornswoggled!”

Function: noun
Definition: A big finish.
Etymology: A mis-heard, semi-spoonerism of the word “doxologer,” a colloquial New England rendering of “doxology,” which was a Puritan term for the collective raising of voices in song at the end of a worship service. Thus, a “sockdolager” is something truly exceptional — the end-all-be-all.
Use it in a sentence: “Well, I guess I know enough to turn you inside out, you sockdologisin’ old man-trap!”
Fun fact: The above line appears in Tom Taylor’s play Our American Cousin, which was performed on the evening of April 14th, 1865 at Ford’s Theater. It got a big laugh from the crowd, which John Wilkes Booth used to muffle the sound of the gunshot that assassinated President Lincoln.

Function: noun
Definition: The whole of something, though often misused as “damn.”
Etymology: Unknown, though it pops up in British literature as early as the eighteenth century. An educated guess: it’s related to concern, a business establishment or enterprise.
Use it in a quip by 19th century American humorist Henry Wheeler Shaw: “Put an Englishman into the Garden of Eden, and he would find fault with the whole blarsted consarn!”

Function: adjective
Definition: Used up
Etymology: Also unknown, though it was coined during the Great Neologism Craze of the 1830s, and its common usage didn’t survive the turn of the century.
Use it in a sentence: “Ye’d best put that dumfungled hoss out to past

Good! Practice these for a while until the words are a regular part of your daily vocabulary. Now that these basics are down you are ready to move on to some more advanced prospector-speak (flash cards may be helpful in memorizing some of these).

A hog-killin' time ~ a real good time. "We went to the New Year's Eve dance and had us a hog-killin' time."

A lick and a promise ~ to do haphazardly. "She just gave it a lick and a promise."

Arbuckle's ~ slang for coffee, taken from a popular brand of the time. "I need a cup of Arbuckle's."

Bazoo ~ mouth. "Shut your big bazoo."

Beef ~ to kill. (From killing a cow to make beef to eat.) "Curly Bill beefed two men in San Antonio."

Bend an elbow ~ have a drink. "He's been known to bend an elbow with the boys."

Coffee boiler ~ shirker, lazy person. (Would rather sit around the coffee pot than help.)

Bunko artist ~ con man.

Curly wolf ~ real tough guy, dangerous man. "Ol' Bill is a regular curly wolf, especially when he's drinkin' whiskey."

Don't care a continental ~ Don't give a damn.

Doxology works ~ a church.

Dry gulch ~ to ambush. Reference from abandoning a body where it fell.

Eucher, euchered ~ to out-smart someone, to be outwitted or suckered into something.

Fight like Kilkenny cats ~ fight like hell.

Fine as cream gravy ~ very good, top notch.

Flannel mouth ~ an overly smooth or fancy talker, especially politicians or salesmen. "I swear that man is a flannel-mouthed liar."

Full as a tick ~ very drunk.

Half seas over ~ drunk.

Here's how! ~ a toast, such as Here's to your health.

Hoosegow ~ jail.

Hot as a whorehouse on nickel night ~ damned hot.

Mudsill ~ low-life, thoroughly disreputable person.

Quirley ~ roll-your-own cigarette.

Shoot, Luke, or give up the gun ~ shit or get off the pot, do it or quit talking about it.

Sound on the goose ~ true, staunch, reliable.

Take French leave ~ to desert, sneak off without permission.

Throw up the sponge ~ quit, give up, surrender.

To beat the Dutch ~ to beat the band. "It was rainin' to beat the Dutch."

Twig ~ understand.

Wake up/Woke up the wrong passenger ~ to trouble or anger the wrong person.

Who-hit-John ~ Liquor, beer, intoxicating spirits. "He had a little too much who-hit-John."

You have all that memorized? Good! Next step: grow an enormous beard, pull out a few teeth, discontinue bathing and contract rickets.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Poster Re-Do!

UK designer Olly Moss does some pretty cool Saul Bass style movie poster revamps. Like all good design these are simple and smart...

P.S. I hope to do a proper Saul Bass post soon...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Claire Morgan

I spent a LONG time on Claire Morgan's site looking at her unbelievably awesome installations.Unfortunately it looks like she only shows in Europe. I would kill to see these things in real life...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Lars von Trier's Antichrist

Here is a really amazing poster for the recent hilarious romp "Antichrist", out now in a slummy dive theater near you. Click here for a larger version. I got to finally see it last night, and as far as I can tell, I was really impressed/scared/unsettled/confused. Take your pick. It meanders, but Lars von Trier is definitely saying something with it, but what that is I'm not entirely sure, and I'm also not entirely sure I want to know what it is. It kind of seems that he is deeply misogynistic, but then you could flip that completely and say that he is showing that women can be powerful, even moreso than men. It contradicts itself, and I kind of liked that. It doesn't have a blunt and obvious message. I do want to watch it again, but not for a while, as it has some absolutely vile imagery. But, in keeping with it's contradictory theme, it's also one of the most beautiful movies I've seen in a long time.

It's a headscratcher for sure. But I think I liked it. Some parts I even loved. I'm definitely thinking about it a lot the day after seeing it, and that's a good thing. And there's a plucky talking fox! What's NOT to love?? Take the family!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Skate or Die (in a fiery ball of glory)

Whether you're a fan of skateboarding or not, you gotta love the intro to Girl/Lakai's "Fully Flared". I'm something of an old curmudgeon when it comes to skate videos, it's hard for me to really enjoy most skating filmed after the year 2000, but "Fully Flared" has a lot of good ol' fashioned street shredding and for the most part isn't too new fangled. There's not too many slo-mo tricks or wacky editing, just a fish-eye lens and some really good skating. Oh, and explosions...

Friday, November 6, 2009

Carl Sagan Day

Saturday November 7, 2009 would have been Carl Sagan's 75th birthday and in celebration Broward University is hosting the 1st annual Carl Sagan Day. Sagan, who died of cancer in 1996, was best known for his amazing "Cosmos" series on PBS, his many books (The Pale Blue Dot, Contact, The Demon Haunted World, etc) and his tireless championing of science, research and education. What really distinguished Sagan was his ability to relate vastly complicated theories and ideas in terms that are not only understandable but profoundly poetic. His scientific genius was unquestionable, but this talent of illumination and his sheer capability to inspire makes him peerless in his field. This clip is a great of example of his eloquence. Happy Birthday Mr. Sagan!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

"The North American Indian"

Photographer and fellow Seattleite Edward S. Curtis embarked in 1907 on an ambitious project, "The North American Indian." It was an ethnological encyclopedia/photo album of over 80 Native American tribes cataloging each group's history, language and religious observances. The project lasted over twenty years with Curtis taking almost 50,000 photographs. Some controversy remains over the extent to which Curtis staged his pictures, but it can't be denied the images are really amazing...