Monthly Archives: August 2007

How I spent my hangover

The following points of light provided comfort in the midst of a red-eyed, gravelly-voiced Sunday:

This article, about the U.S.'s baffling, incredible criminal justice policies:

The United States—with five percent of the world’s population—houses 25 percent of the world’s inmates. Our incarceration rate (714 per 100,000 residents) is almost 40 percent greater than those of our nearest competitors (the Bahamas, Belarus, and Russia). Other industrial democracies, even those with significant crime problems of their own, are much less punitive: our incarceration rate is 6.2 times that of Canada, 7.8 times that of France, and 12.3 times that of Japan. We have a corrections sector that employs more Americans than the combined work forces of General Motors, Ford, and Wal-Mart, the three largest corporate employers in the country, and we are spending some $200 billion annually on law enforcement and corrections at all levels of government, a fourfold increase (in constant dollars) over the past quarter century.

And this one, about why AIDS is so widespread in Africa, but the 'coming epidemic' everyone has been predicting in Eastern Europe and China hasn't happened:

The cause of the AIDS crisis in Africa is what has now become known in AIDS jargon as "concurrent" relationships. Africans have about the same number of sexual partners as anyone else; they are just more likely to have more than one long-term partner at a time. Long-term relationships are much more likely to spread AIDS than one-night stands because of the low probability of a single sex act spreading the virus. Crucially, both men and women have multiple partners, in contrast to other poor societies where men may often stray but women's monogamy is jealously guarded. Western men and women are more likely to practice serial monogamy or engage in one-night stands. To oversimplify a little, Africa's AIDS tragedy is that it combines greater Western-style sexual equality for women with social norms that permit simultaneous long-term sexual relationships for both partners.

Urban Dictionary, a website to look up all that slang you see on MySpace:

Jill Off: The female version of jack off — unassisted autoerotic stimulation.

Remasculate: The opposite of emasculate. To grow one's balls back after they have been shrunken by an especially effeminate activity.

Hein: abbreviated form of "heinous" (pronounced: Hayn)

Jank: broken; unnecessarily redundant, superfluous, or meaningless; stupid or ridiculously moronic; bootleg or of questionable quality. “Fuck! This CD player I bought off Ebay is jank”

Work-hot: A person that may or may not be hot, but is the most attractive person in the set of people you work with so you lust after him/her.

Post-Potter depression: The empty feeling that comes from finishing the seventh book in the Harry Potter series and realizing there will be no more

Army of Dude, a heartbreaking Iraq blog by a Texan who has patrolling Baghdad for almost 15 months now.

"This occupation, this money pit, this smorgasbord of superfluous aggression is getting more hopeless and dismal by the second. It’s maddening to think that more than a year’s worth of blood, sweat and tears will lead to little more than a pat on the back and a hideously redundant speech from someone who did none of the bleeding, sweating or crying."

 

"In the future, I want my children to grow up with the belief that what I did here was wrong, in a society that doesn’t deem that idea unpatriotic."

 

"Despite being in a meaningless situation, my life has never had this much meaning. I watch the backs of my friends and they do the same for me."

 

"The building we picked used to be a whiskey distillery, and we’ve been busy putting up concrete barriers and wire around it. A house was too close to where the wall was supposed to be, so engineers blew it to smithereens and sent the family packing. The father owned the plot for forty years and comes by every so often to collect the useful bricks left scattered a hundred yards in every direction. Before he entered once, I patted his seventy year old frame down like a common criminal. Talk about community interaction."

Thanks, Internet!

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Do you have to be American to think these are funny?

NYU boy, about man with cane and sunglasses: Why do all blind people have to wear sunglasses?
NYU girl: Isn't it all part of the persona?
NYU boy: What, like they don't want me to see their eyes?
NYU girl: I guess. And like how they wear baggy pants and FUBU shit.
NYU boy: …I said 'blind people.'

–F train, 14th St

That's it, I'm moving to New York.

Frat boy #1: Dude, you got really skinny. What's going on with you? Are you sick or something?
Frat boy #2: Yeah, bro, I have IBS — Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Frat boy #1: You're shittin' me!

–91st & 1st

via

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[Animal] + [Object] = Internet fame

Remember how I was all excited about my 'Gecko vs. Ants' getting 7,000 YouViews? Well, "Fox on a Trampoline" has 700,000. Are people seriously just sitting in their cubicles thinking of cute animals to pair with potentially entertaining objects and Googling it? If there aren't already videos for 'Goat on a jet-ski', 'Elephant in a Prius' or 'Dolphin on a roller coaster', go make that shit now. Them's click-bait.

Fox on a Goddamn Trampoline

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Discovering Elvis in your mid-20s

Now that all of my shifty foreign friends have retreated to their respective hemispheres, I've fully re-matriculated into my standard social life.

In other words, I've been surfing the internet for the past three days.

Greatest discovery: This clip. When I get old and overweight, I wanna do it like Elvis, all jolly and talented-like.

Oooh, and don't forget this one. Like all of Elvis's songs, the lyrics casually shift between cute and offensive, but it's a pretty cracking pop tune.

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Anyone who wants books, electronics or peanut butter, place your orders now

I booked tickets to Seattle. I’ve seriously had it with Grey Lady Denmark this summer. Seattle probably won’t be any better weather-wise, but at least it has old friends and abundant teriyaki to take my mind off the cloudy duvet of Inconvenient Truth that’s been hanging over northern Europe all summer.

 

Denmarkians: Lemme know if you want me to pick you up any appallingly cheap American goods. With the Tijuana-ass exchange rate, it's like the whole continent's having a half-off sale.

 

Seattleites: I'll be in my humble hometown from Sept. 6-22. Let's do stuff. Holler if you wanna hang.

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Summer leftovers

Due to assorted personal busyness and internet-connection clusterfuckery, I've been out of blogging distance the past few weeks. Updates:

 

  • Ever since the Møn landing, I’ve been getting out lots. It helps having an imminently-departing friend who wants to wring as much fun out of Denmark as possible before he leaves, but still. Below are pictures of a Bike-BQ we threw on Amager on a less-cloudy-than-usual Tuesday.
  • Checked out a Danish International Studies showcase of homemade chairs, vases and textiles (i.e. patterned cloth). Make it work, people.
  • We also went to the Malmo Festival. What a great idea: Instead of having a big music festival out in the burbs, just turn your downtown into a foodstravaganza and get bands to play in the middle of your inner-city park. There’s not much to do there other than eat elk-kebabs and wander through packs of throat-scarved Fabios speaking chirpy-chirpy or whatever, but that’s the fun of it.

The prize-winning photograph in the 'really obvious metaphor' categoryIt wasn't as cold as it lookedThis is what a summer barbecue looks like in Denmark. Charcoal... Beer... Comforter...DockblockI love that this is like a 20 minute bike ride from central Copenhagen

A boy and his chairThis is like porn for Danish peopleIkea-worthy!Ella ... ella ... ella

We were the only people drinking outside. "It's OK ... we're Danish"The Turning Torso, it's calledLooking Dubai-ous...We. Are. Tourists.

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Those four years as a video store clerk finally pay off

Remember when they used to make movies that were just a series of sketches? 'The Kentucky Fried Movie' is possibly the most famous of this mini-genre, but my favorite was always 'The Groove Tube'. Maybe it's only because I first saw this movie through the soft focus of a haze of pot smoke, but it holds up pretty well. This one's worth watching all the way through:

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I can die happy and complete

I'm a runner-up on Overheard in New York's headline contest! We made it, Ma! We made it!

OK, so I don't actually win anything from this contest. Being smarmily anti-Semitic on the internets is its own reward, I guess. This is the first thing I've won since the 8th grade yearbook named me 'Most Romantic', though, and this one wasn't a sublimated expression of my homosexuality. So there.

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If you work at a human rights institution, are you still allowed to laugh at stuff like this?

Because this is pretty rad:

Son: I'm thinking of an animal now.
Mother: Does it live in water?
Son: No.
Mother: Does it live on land?
Son: No.
Mother: Does it live in the air?
Son: No.
Mother: Does it live in the subway?
Son: Yes.
Mother: Is it a rat?
Son: No.
Mother: I give up.
Son: It's a homeless person.

Thanks, Overheard!

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