Bradley Cooper in the role of a lifetime

Seriously, just watch this. Don't click on it, though. Because the surprise will be spoiled. Don't spoil the surprise!


You crazy for this one, Henry

I'm going to hell.

One of my best friends is coming to visit me over spring break. I can only convey my excitement over this prospect by quoting the entirety of the message that he sent with his flight itinerary.

"Here it is. Lets smoke pcp."

Holy moly.

I did $9 worth of laundry today. Three loads in, like, industrial strength washing machines. I am the filthiest boy in town. I would bemoan the fact that I seem to be the only person who ever cleans out the lint catchers in the dryers if it weren't for the fact that I only clean out the lint catchers because there is always noticeably more lint after I am done with the dryers than was in them before I began, and, despite what you would think to be the relative anonymity that comes with such an ignominy, this makes me feel ashamed. I don't want to be judged, even if the judger hasn't got a face to put with the name -- which will inevitably be something like "lint boy" or "Linty McLinterson." I would call such a person "Master Lintinand Lintington, Esquire, of Lintingham Village, Lintshire, just outside Linton, Englint." I have never considered myself an especially linty person, especially because I only very rarely have to dig it out of my bellybutton with a ballpoint pen cap after vainly fishing for a while with my stubby little fingers. But I may after all have to reconsider. I don't know exactly where lint comes from. Nor do I know why people get the hiccups, which I do not have, but in which I am nevertheless mildly interested. The mysteries are killing me.

(I actually have fabulous fingers.)


Salt bomb

I'm reading this novel with a character named Olive in it, and every time I read the name Olive, I instantly want to eat some olives. The problem is, Olive plays a pretty significant role in the novel, and I have the willpower of a slobbering dog in the refrigeration facilities of a third-world morgue during a brownout.

Me : olives :: ravening dog : putrefied corpses

This one's almost too easy. Almost. Shooting fish, but, as the man said, I don't see nothing wrong with a little bump and grind. Click to embiggen.


Double chiasmatic invagination of edges

An instance of superhuman biblio-crate digging led my friend Robert to stumble upon "this little gem" in a used book store.

I can't tell you how glad this makes me feel.

Nor can I tell you how much I want this confluence of royals -- the King of R&B and the Prince of slacker pop -- to be something more -- either on purpose, or by a cosmic flux or divine intervention -- than a mere coincidence.

Stephen Malkmus : barber :: R. Kelly : hoes

The happy upshot of embedding being disabled for the "I'm a Flirt" video is that I can now post this unaccountably compelling mashup of that song and Broken Social Scene's "7/4 Shoreline."

It doesn't quite work when the harmonies kick in (stupid modalities), but I'm not complaining. It's the delicious confluence of chocolate and peanut butter. By which I mean, black people and Canadians.

Yes, I ought to be working. Especially considering I've got it in my head that the Oscars might be a beautiful, terrifying train wreck to watch after 8 days of prep. It's been a slow year for me, cinematically. Of the movies up for awards, I've only seen There Will Be Blood, about which I generally agree with the more dismissive, less orgasmic side of the critical discourse -- fine movie, sublime individual performance by Danny Day. And let's be straight here, the score would get about 10% of the attention it has if it weren't by Johnny Greenwood. Though I am grateful for the fact that it was, in the grand tradition of Ennio M., confrontational, which is something arthouse cinema hasn't been enough of since it slid into a complacent funk after France and Sweden gave us the depressing half of the 60s, and we realized that life is a game that can't be won.

Speaking of foreign countries, here's my favorite-ever LastFM comment.

I've been on LastFM for about a year now, and all it's really done for me is make me more self-conscious and affected when I listen to music. It tracks everything you listen to, so I get it in my head that I want the public facade of my taste to accurately reflect my taste. Except my taste is a good deal worse than I want it to be, so I find myself listening to way more Tom Waits than I would otherwise care to, because he's one of the most popular artists for people like myself to pretend to like. But that's only half the story, since I pirated the man's entire discography from bittorrent, and if I'm going to disrespect him like that, I might as well, you know, try to appreciate him, too.

So LastFM has been good to me, insofar as it's been one more public profile to hawk-watch, even as nobody cares what it looks like. It's the online equivalent of a garden of plant-sculptures, carefully cultivated with lawnsheers but behind impregnable estate walls. (In this case, estate walls of indifference). So the question now becomes, why did I sign up for MOG the other day? MOG does exactly the same thing as LastFM. Exactly. But now I have both. And that, my friends, is unnecessary. I sometimes yearn for the days when I had 5 TV channels and a computer that went "bing bong skreeeeeeeee" when it connected to the internet. But then I reconsider when I realize that I've been lucky enough to experience all the benefits and perks of aging, like getting an oil-change in the ghetto, and standing in front of a vast trough of white onions in the grocery store and trying to figure out which one to buy, with precisely no criteria, for a recipe I don't know how to make.

I was sautéing garlic at 9:30 this morning, and I had the heat too high, and when I poked in the spatula to stir the rapidly blackening, horribly stinking bits, the pool of oil exploded into a tiny yellow geyser and burned my face and my hands. Fortunately, my glasses took the brunt of the blast, or I'd be blinder than shit. I've never been so lucky to be... uh... blind. Every 8 months or so I make a 3-week self-taught Master Course stab at learning how to cook chicken, and it always ends in near disaster. But that's ok, because it will give a body something useful and interesting to learn once I get a PhD in literature, which, it's more apparent than ever, is a more egregious racket than the Irish mob.

To wit: Jacques Derrida makes a stab at most baroque "that's what she said" moment of the year with this doozy of a dandy of a meaningless clause.

What's that you say? You don't understand what that could possibly mean? Well, you're in luck, because he includes an enlightening graphical representation of the phenomenon, "double chiasmatic invagination of edges," which consists of, as near as I can tell, a stick-figure bajingo with an eye ("I"?!) in the center.

This is what I do all day. We call it "hermeneutics." Hermeneutics is Greek for "a federally subsidized system of spousal hiring which allows aggrandizing bullshit artists to self-mythologize to the point that they're convinced they're doing vital work." Welcome to the fold, brothers.


The New Adventures of Hylas and Philonous: Still Dialoguein' (A Philosophical Investigation)

Hylas: Everybody calls him Pants.
Philonous: Everybody calls him Pants?
Hylas: Everybody who's anybody calls him Pants.
Philonous: Why do they call him Pants?
Hylas: Because everybody else calls him Pants.
Philonous: Except the people who don't call him Pants.
Hylas: Nobodies don't call him Pants.
Philonous: Nobody doesn't call him Pants.
Hylas: Right.
Philonous: So everybody calls him Pants.
Hylas: Everybody calls him Pants.


Pronounced Lie-Nerd Sky-Nerd

I got this Lynyrd Skynyrd sweatshirt at Wal-Mart for $7.

People don't seem to react to me the same way when I'm wearing it. There's a glaze of automatic dismissal in their eyes. Point of fact, they react to me exactly the way I would react to you if you were wearing a $7 Lynyrd Skynyrd sweatshirt from Wal-Mart. But I can't think of any way to signal the fact that, even though I think Lynyrd Skynyrd is awesome and I'm not wearing the shirt in any way ironically because I totally think wearing this Lynyrd Skynyrd shirt that I got for $7 at Wal-Mart is awesome, neither am I the kind of person who would buy a $7 Lynyrd Skynyrd shirt from Wal-Mart and then wear it because I think that's an awesome thing to do. I'm a complicated kind of man.

I ain't the one.

I'm not generally a Wal-Mart person. But I had to go somewhere. I had to go somewhere because I had to recharge my car battery. It's been dead for over a month – since I got back from Christmas, essentially. I didn't feel like calling Triple-to-the-A, so instead I waited for about three weeks, and then ordered a jump-starter from Amazon.com for $90.

What's that you ask? How could I have possibly justified doing this when I have AAA and the whole point of AAA is that they do things like this for free so you don't have to do things like buy a $90 car jumpstarter over the internets?

The answer to this question will, for now, remain shrouded in mystery. I don't want to give away too much of my aura.

I picked Wal-Mart because I didn't know how to get there, and my mom bought me a little GPS thing for my car. So I clicked "search" on the little doohickey and typed "Wal-Mart," and it located the nearest Wal-Mart. It told me to "turn left here" and I turned left. It said "merge right" and I merged right, onto the interstate, which was jammed with cars going seventeen thousand miles per hour. It said "put the pedal to the metal" and at first I thought it said "put the petal to the medal" and I didn't get it, because I only infrequently polish war memorials with roses while I'm driving, but then I got it, and then I burned rubber. When you go for a few months without driving, the circuits in your brain start to re-sensitize to just how dangerous driving is -- to just how little has to go wrong for everything to go wrong. I'm pretty convinced that when Karl Benz invented the car, he was looking for a way to consolidate the bullet and the coffin into one convenient package. I mean, he was German.

(Fun fact: the Daimler-Benz company was eventually renamed after a guy who sold Benzes. He had a daughter named Mercedes, so he called the cars he sold Mercedeses. So every time you think somebody is preposterously and self-aggrandizingly named after a luxury car, just remember – it's really no more outlandish than naming your daughter after a hamburger. My daughter is getting named Mercedes Wendy's, with the apostrophe-s and everything.)

What I've found about this GPS thing is that it always gets you where you need to go, but it always gives you different directions to get there. I went to Target -- I'm a Target person (ie, low-rent yuppie for whom the helvetica font represents the height of modern luxury) -- and it took me there one way, and back another way, and neither was the way with which I actually already know how to get to Target. At 11 o'clock at night, it told me to turn down a one-way sidestreet that was lit up with 10,000 watt police floodlights. I turned down the street. Then, I saw that it was next to a fast food restaurant with no drive through, and I turned around. The fast food restaurant sans drive-through is the thing, for me, that signals that I've stepped into a new kind of economy. That I have, in effect, gone beyond thunderdome. Does this make me a racist? No. But something else probably does. Maybe I'm wearing it right now.


They're called pigtails because the more accurate ugly, hateful, sinful, dreadful, thankless little girl who doesn't love her mother even though her mother does everything for her and who will grow up and never be happy because she's a whore who can't even rinse a glass when she's done drinking her milk that her mother buys for her even though her mother is lactose intolerant and you better not walk those fat little feet down those stairs tonight because your mother is entertaining a gentleman caller who might be your new daddy and let's hope you don't drive this one away tootails was too hard to remember, and Whoretails was the name of the club my mom worked at, which led to confusion.


Click to enlarge (you know where this is going)

I've got a whole backlogged cache of these things.

They are, at this point, the only thing keeping me interested in my academic work.

And I'm taking a course exclusively devoted to the slavishly cryptosexual writings of Henry James.


Plenty more to come.

That's what she said.

Also, it's almost impossible for me to imagine any scenario wherein I'd want to be this guy. I think you're safe, bro.