7.31.2005

Fantastic Blog

Love this Crunktastical site I just discovered. I can't decide if it is written by an angry black person, or a very angry racist. Maybe the two aren't mutally exclusive... But I digress.
Fighting off all those gay rumors can stress a brotha out, thanks a lot Superhead! So when I want to unwind I log on to Crunk and Disorderly and check out Cousin Fresh 2 Def! Mama even loves the site, its crazy!

- Big Tigger


The truth of this mystery is for you few noble readers to decipher.

Pollution as Entertainment

In Australia, on the weekends, the best thing to do, is to go out and watch a ship-sinking.

7.30.2005

Back

Sorry for the lack of posts lately. I've been busily preparing for the Tibet Fest gig, which is now over. It went quite well, especially if you like hip-hopified World Music. Nawang is, what a surprise, an amazingly soulful traveling musician who treated my musical deficiencies with the candor and instructive force of a true Tibetan World Music Genius. He was very kind and signed a CD for me afterwards with the following note:

To Nostradamus,

Great to play with you. Thank you.

Nawang


The funny thing that I never told him was that this was the first time I've ever played the drums in front of anyone before, but hey, what you gonna do but lie about your experiences to a famous world musician to scam your way into playing with him? After the performance, I trust he was none the wiser, though he I believe had his suspicions.

I heard one fan describe my drumming as "insane" which was all I needed to know. Unfortunately, mid-song my ride cymbal came crashing off due to, well, my not being a real drummer, but I recovered well and kept things going... Okay, no more personal anecdotes for a while. Come Monday, it's back to MEDIA MEDIA MEDIA. With a side order of DEATH.

7.28.2005

Can MJ Rise Like Kobe?

And by MJ, I mean Michael Jackson, not Jordan.

It seems Kobe Bryant is back in business with Nike.

Shrewd move on the part of Kobe. The ad includes several "slams" followed by the obligatory number of excercises Kobe will do to "silence" the imagined critic... Kudos also to Eric Neel for the always timely Johnny Cash reference.

This brings up an interesting point about the nature of writing, but of internet writing more specifically. I've noticed that many of the ESPN writers on "Page 2" employ a humorous style to augment their delivery of relatively repetitive sports stories. It has been argued that this "humorous" element is actually an homage to the original internet funnyman, Dan Berger, but I digress... This quick, witty style of delivery catches the reader by its easiness, tricks the lazy, attention-span deprived web surfer into lolling for a few pressure net-minutes in the hammock-like cradle of its blandness...

Personally, I find something very offensive about this style of writing, namely my own susceptibility to its charms. Whenever Bill Simmons makes a 90210 reference, I find myself cringing, then inevitably making a blogpost later about Gabrielle Carteris... I mean, I'm adamantly against this disgusting nostalgic reliance on pop-culture references over sustained, hard-formed, well-opined discourse. Really, I am.

In a sense Death/Media Incarnate has become one man's private reckoning with comedy, a sort of jingoistic fantasy in the spirit of Hans Zimmer. Originally, the intention was to postulate some sort of inimicable link between media exposure and a form of living death. Now it has become a sort of living death I never could have imagined. Slink onward, break only the mirrors that were bent by the inferno's heat.

7.27.2005

Death Devalued

Well, not exactly, but at least in the eyes of the Supreme Court, copyright infringement is in some ways more important, from a liabilty stand-point than murder. Daily Kos summarizes nicely.

7.26.2005

Kansas/Nebraska Act II

Though Kansas has very sensible marriage laws that allow minors to wed provided they have parental consent, a Nebraska District Attorney strongly objects to sexual relations between a 22 year-old and a 13 year-old.

It is interesting to note that on April 5, 2005, Kansas voters approved a state constitutional ban of gay marriage, despite the fact that gay marriage was already illegal... While Kansas lawmakers and voters are obviously quite strenuously opposed to responsible, committed adults forming a legally recognized union, they are perfectly alright with a child marrying the pedophile who impregnated her, as long as the parents consent... Amazing.

Happily, in this case, Nebraska is under no obligation to acknowledge this marriage as any form of legalizing or legitimating factor in the sexual relationship (which clearly took place pre-marriage as the "couple" married only after the girl was pregnant), but nevertheless, the Kansas law really reveals the pulsing heart at the bigotted, frothing core of the "protection of marriage" movement.

If it's a man
And woman,
Then
It's alright with me,
Even
If the lovely bride
Has not yet turned
Fourteen.


By the way, the middle two paragraphs of this post are dedicated to Dan/Tom of Not About Delino DeShields. Way to speak as one despite the government's refusal to recognize your union.

God I love...

...Conservatives who censor "bathroom humor" from the comics section of the paper. Way to go.

Major Record Labels

What a surprise, Sony Records was paying DJ's to play their music.

This is yet another example of the disadvantages of having three or four main, gigantic competitors dominating ninety-five percent of an industry.

7.25.2005

Non-Lethal is the Way to Be?

The US military, realizing that the huge civilian death toll in Iraq is doing way more harm than good for their cause, have decided to distribute non-lethal weapons. Now if only the London Police would stop carrying guns... Oh wait. They usually don't... Terror breeds strange bed-fellows.

More Horror for Boyscouts

Hard to understand what happened at the Boyscout's Jamboree.

Video Game Violence

Apropos of the recent debate, and with my thoughts generally spurred by this extremely intelligent Reason piece by our beloved Finnegan, Dan Koffler, here is a link to Brooks Brown's (a Columbine student who knew Harris and Klebold) blog on the issue of video game violence. While Koffler's prose is perhaps a bit more incisive, Brown's perspective is certainly an interesting one.

Madness

Though Terri is gone, Michael remains, and he is being persecuted by EVIL RELIGIOUS MANIACS IN FLORIDA!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

Fading as we speak...

...Sadly, it has been almost 4 months since Terri passed on. Even more sadly, interest in living wills has also begun to wane... Fear not, interest in not-disappearing-in-Aruba is still on the rise!

Kingspawn Explained

Hidden Hand, while original in many respects, owes at least one of its distinguishing features to our shared cultural history. Who knew?

7.24.2005

Lance that French Boil

Hell yes. Hell yes. We love you Lance. We love you.

Terror

Lovely little story here from the USA Today (love you guys)... Guess the London Police were a little overzealous in pursuing this Brazilian darker-skinned person from a surveilled building... Whoops!

7.23.2005

The Truth within the World's Untruthfulness


Death/Media, originally uploaded by Anfernee Hardaway is God.

Forget the sleeve, Nostradamus wears his philosophy on his arm.

7.22.2005

New Favorite Quote

From this absolutely insanely wrought comment on Delino
Does the crocodile understand a conversation that doesn't include a weapon?
Actually almost Browningesque. From Andrea del Sarto:
Speak as they please, what does the mountain care?

Terror Starts At Home

Blood in the streets in the town of...Sharm el-Sheik? But isn't Egypt an Islamic nation? I thought all terrorists were Muslims... What's that? You say terrorism is not always religiously motivated? Marxist! Out of my house!

#-3 John Travolta


John Travolta

Aside from his obvious genius in movies like Pulp Fiction, Get Shorty, and Face/Off, Travolta has also done a string of unbelievably bad films. His crowning glory, however, has to be his follow-up to Pulp Fiction, 1995's brilliantly penned Desmond Nakano original, White Man's Burden.

This is what we like to call a tour de force in reverse. The premise is basicallly this: imagine if whites were in the cultural position of blacks, which Nakano interprets to mean they are almost entirely poor, tenuously employed, and full of violent resentment.

The movie itself is highly absurd, with Travolta kidnapping his boss, Harry Belafonte, and taking him around on a tour of his miserable, white existence. Eventually, Belafonte escapes and commits a crime himself, battery, against some white people who are unable to get any law enforcement to help. Belafonte, so desperate to get back to his comfortable black life, bashes an innocent white man over the head with a phone. Amazingly shot, I might add. Of course he's then immediately caught by Travolta again.

Travolta, after showing he's human by teaching Belafonte to salt his ketchup instead of his fries, is killed by overzealous black police anxious to rescue Belafonte who was having a heart-attack (Travolta had naturally been attempting CPR before he was gunned down)...

Okay, all of this is a fine, stupid, typical attempt at a "meaningful" allegory by Hollywood. There was one priceless moment however. Travolta returns early on in the film to his house in a slum, only the noisy neighbors, instead of blasting intense, rhythmical rap, are playing typical, soul-less white metal. Why would this not also be reversed? Or is rhythm a biological and not cultural phenomenon? And is the harmonic intricacy of Mozart's music in no way related to the complexity of Isaac Newton's physics? And is the fusion of African rhythm and European harmony as evidenced in jazz ultimately not beyond race entirely in its capacity to be a kind of cultural version of Hart Crane's Bridge, something that potentially "lends a myth to God"?

Anyway, Battlefield Earth is also amazingly beautiful. Scientology itself is explanation enough for why John Travolta is the #-3 person ever!

SFAQL

Tough times on The Tube.

Best Search Hit So Far

Can be seen here.

Why I am Glad I am Not a Kid

Not least of all because I grew up in this disgustingly wealthy suburb (Ed's note: The South School Gymnasium has a really small ceiling. Nostradamus had seventh-grade YMCA basketball practice there every Thursday.)

Then again, I've always wished I grew up in the days when a child was forced to learn Greek and Latin, and where a young Thomas Chatterton could learn, from easily duped patrons, the intricacies of forgery before the age of 14... Those were the days.

Trivia Fun

From our favorite website, BBC News.

7.21.2005

Welcome to the Bat Cave

I've been reading Nick's Corner and I like what I see.

The sexual tension between Nick and Katie is unbelievable to speculate about, and the comments, while a bit overzealous at times, are often really funny. There's a very "reality" feel to much of what goes on, and that only means one thing to this prophet of future procrastinations: paradise!

The Sparkle in Your China

China affirms its not-nuking-anyone-first policy. I'm sleeping much easier tonight. Much, much easier.

Apparently I'm not the Only One...

...who can see the future.

I really love media stories like this one. Especially on account of quotes like this
"They have the desire to use their terrorist techniques to frighten us," Bush said in a speech on trade in which he did not directly mention the bombings. "They understand when they kill in cold blood it ends up on our TV screens. And they're trying to shake our will."

A surprising elocutor of the Death/Media philosophy's inherent truth. Killing does have an eerie way of ending up on television, as if we're all going to die someday or something. What I think is interesting is the effect the total predominance of violence in film, television, and video games (see the recent GTA "controversy") has on our (the average American's) perception of acts of terror. Theoretically, if the violence inherent to so much entertainment were more limitted, individual acts of terrorism would actually become more effective because more unique. As it is, terror, even for someone who knows several victims of terror, still has more in common with a Dolph Lundgren movie than it does with that person's actual experience, and that filter is certainly a powerful, and perhaps therapeutically useful (if the goal is to be indifferent to acts of terror) factor.

Big Time

Itunes has welcomed Alcibiades into the fold. Can a Grammy be far behind?

It Never Ends

Another person has sued Michael Jackson for alleged sexual assault. Happily, Thomas Sneddon won't be involved this time, and from the story, perhaps Jackson himself plans not to be too!

Apparently the accuser in this case claims he was forced into a limo with Jackson during the 1984 World's Fair, sexually assaulted during a long drive, and then, presumably, dropped back off at the World's Fair... Right. Even better, he claims he had "repressed" the memories of this incident until, you guessed it, seeing coverage of the 2003 allegations.

Am I correct in assuming that anybody who ever met Michael Jackson and spent even five minutes alone with him now has the complete go-ahead to sue Jackson for any absurd amount of damages? Does anybody else smell a rotten crab cake?

Will a judge with balls actually just throw this nonsense out instead of wasting the tax dollars of Californians (though I guess as it's a civil suit the costs to the court are less than in a criminal trial)?

7.20.2005

How's This For Unimportant?

Apparently so much that it's on the front page of the BBC. (Editors Note: Nostradamus is known to have owned several episodes of the original Star Trek on Video.)

Human Interest Story

Whenever you see that title, you know I'm getting a little bit lean in the head, and haven't been able to focus my eyes on the screen for long enough to search out any good stories. With that in mind, I present: Endangered Woodpecker Population on the Rise!

My girlfriend has begun pressuring me to blog less, and as a result I've been trying to limit myself to four or five posts a day instead of ten or twenty... The other day she said to me, as I presented a possible blogging idea, "That sounds great, Nostradamus. On the day you write that post, maybe you should only post it, and spend a lot of time on making it really high-quality, Dan-Berger-level quality even? That way it wouldn't be as watered down as most of your stuff." "Yeah. Maybe I'll do that," I responded, of course knowing that in the after-glow of writing a quality post I often find it impossible to resist blogging the next ten news items I come across, regardless of merit... Oh well, I'm sure we'll work it out.

China

The US Government just released their annual report on China. Prognostications from me to come after a night of fasting and incense burning beneath my bust of Emerson.

Value of Life

Using these statistics, and assuming the Iraq war was essentially a war of vengeance for 9/11, the "ratio of life" stands pretty much at 10 dead Iraqis for every victim of 9/11. 3000 dead in NY, DC, PA, well, I'm afraid we'll have to kill 25,000 innocent Iraqis in retaliation. Fair is fair, and many of the victims were, after all, white Christians.

7.19.2005

Consensus Choice?

I think not. This guy seems pretty much what we could have expected from our president.

Who is this cat?

Nostradamus is extremely mistrustful of anyone with this name...

Person of the Week



Buddy Holly

Though today remembered better for his place in the Weezer song catalogue, back in the day, before the whole mythological plane crash death, Buddy was one of the best, brightest, and most innovative composers of the early Rock 'n Roll period.

His signature glasses are recognized the world over, but again, the music is better, more important, and more edifying. Songs like "That'll be the Day" and "Everday" have a delicate brilliance that was imitated but never matched by Lennon/McCartney. If not for the tragic plane crash we've all heard about thanks to Don Maclean's extremely unsentimental song, "American Pie", Holly would have ruled the sixties, and perhaps altered even more substantially the landscape of the music that came after him. Buddy Holly, we love you, we miss you, though we never knew you. (I never met you but I love you reference --editor). We who will someday die salute you everyday until then, Buddy.

The End of an Era

Death. It happens. Even to General Westmoreland. Life is not fair. But neither is napalm...

7.18.2005

Tort Reform?

Seems more like the government is out to profit from the business dealings of big tobacco.

As a recently reformed smoker, I have to say I was in no way influenced by tobacco companies in my choice to smoke. I was influenced, like everyone else I imagine, by peer-pressure. How suing these companies for $282 Billion Dollars (using the RICO statute) is really any kind of "justice" for whatever misleading the companies did in the past is an absolute mystery to me.

Death Watch

Because I am feeling particularly morbid this fine morning, I thought I would launch a new feature called "Death Watch". It should come as no surprise that Nostradamus, acclaimed as he is a as a prophet, still can't quite predict everything. For what I can't figure out myself, I turn to one place. Television.

Death Watch was really what this blog was all about before I got caught up posting 20 relatively main-stream news story with only the occasional "Content-Rich" post. But things were once very different. In the beginning, I would write insane and zany stuff all the time, including dream retellings, prophecies, and, well, hundreds of posts about Terri Schiavo. Death Watch will be very much in the spirit of the Early Period (pre-Arlo/Actual Rod) of Death/Media... With no further ado, I give you:

Another dead end in Holloway case

The phrase "Dead end" was what drew my attention to this otherwise boring story about the Holloway disappearance (some have suggested Tom Cruise had her vaporized by an interstellar ray-gun)... I mean, when you are describing the search for a potentially-dead missing teen, and when you haven't found her yet, isn't using a phrase like "Dead end" false advertising? For all we know Natalee is in Turkey being sold in a white slave market, which while bleak, is certainly not the "dead end" implied by this careless use of language in this significant and evocative news story.

Continuity

So, the unending Karl Rove saga continues. Cooper claims that Rove was the first to tell him about Plame, which flys in the face of last Friday's claims by Republicans that Rove had been told the information by reporters... Aw shucks!

7.17.2005

Hakeem's Nightmare

Hakeem Olajuwon, devout Muslim that he is, would no doubt be slightly upset at the fate of The Summit in Houston. It's been converted into a Megachurch. My favorite part is the rotating Golden Globe described in the story... So much for Protestantism being against iconography!

Is this perhaps payback for Hakeem's alleged funding of terrorism? Only God knows for sure. God, and Osama of course!

7.16.2005

Actual God???

Is this your sad fate?

#-2 Delino DeShields



Delino DeShields

Delino makes the list not so much for his astonishingly, in fact definitively, mediocre ("potential-laden") career as a second-baseman for the Expos, Dodgers, Cardinals, Orioles, and Cubs, nor for the fact that he has the rather dubious distinction of having been traded for a young Pedro Martinez, no Delino makes the list only because of the fact he didn't have the foresight to reserve his name on blogspot.com and it was co-opted by the subtle geniuses of Not About Delino DeShields. Delino, without a doubt, you are the #-2 best person ever!

Mathematics to the rescue

Just when you were getting down about bombs going off, buildings collapsing, justices retiring, etc, mathematics is here! to help you out in tough times.

Finally a thesis project even Gauss would have to admit is genius!

Rove About For Long Enough, You Will Walk on the Moon

In light of the delayed shuttle launch, I feel we should focus our attention on another type of space vehicle, the media-sphere-dominating attention monster Karl "Lunar" Rove(r). There definitely haven't been enough blog posts about this guy.

Latest development, another Rove e-mail, this one to a security officer in the White House, regarding Matt Cooper's questions:
"When he finished his brief heads-up he immediately launched into Niger. Isn't this damaging? Hasn't the president been hurt? I didn't take the bait, but I said if I were him I wouldn't get Time far out in front on this."

My favorite part is the last bit.

Republicans, naturally, have been claiming this e-mail exonerates Rove, proves he was only trying to steer the reporter away from Wilson, that the revelation of Plame's identity was only mentioned in passing...

As far as I can tell, this does nothing of the sort. The part about "I wouldn't get Time far out in front on this" smacks to me of the typical, bully-style tactics employed by Rove and his band of information-control thugs. It doesn't tell me whether Rove's casual comment about "Wilson's wife" was the original leak or not.

And where does Judith Miller fit into all of this? What is she protecting, journalistic integrity, or someone else (though possibly still Rove) who originally leaked the information? It's unclear to me, but with the Republican controlled house, I doubt Nancy Pelosi gets very far in her effort to hold hearings.

7.15.2005

In Pittsburgh...

...even the T-ball games are a matter of extreme seriousness. Way to get in the spirit of things, Dad. "Thanks for paying Johnny to beat up Timmy so we didn't have to put Timmy in. Timmy's retarded Dad. We'll never win with him." "I know Mikey, I know. It'll be taken care of. Don't you worry."

The Only Rival

At least in the history of this blog, to our exalted queen of over-exposure, Terri Schiavo, has to be the notoriously missing Natalee Holloway. The fruitlessness of the searching on Aruba (which is the size of golf-course) is quite mystifying, especially considering the brilliant coverage by such luminaries as Her High-Holiness, Nancy Grace. Despite suggestions that I am somehow responsible for the disappearance, I must admit that, well, I had nothing to do with it. Really.

Getting Nasty

Let's hope this Christian adoption agency which refuses to place children with Catholic parents is a sign of a return to the good old days of 1618-1648, when Christians of different sects were to busy killing each other to try and impose their world-view on anybody else... Just kidding, the Thirty Years War, by all accounts, was also terrible for any stray Jews or Muslims who happened to get caught up in the blood-making.

Proof...

...that being a celebrity (or celebrity's son) is an advantage in other legal systems than our own, like the vauntedly even-handed judiciary of Brazil.

7.14.2005

Diversity

Since the goal of having so many contributors on D/M was to have a variety of political views, and since I've been seemingly deserted by all my other contributors, I thought I would post links to some of the more hilarious/righteous/stupid blog posts I could find through Technorati. Let's go:

Santorum is a Saint

Santorum is Hopelessly Far Behind in the Polls

Kennedy is a Hypocrite

Kennedy is a Drunk

Santorum is a Dick

Santorum is an Out of Touch Moron

Okay, some really moderately phrased, considered opinions on matters... I know that potential for lack of MSM-style decorum is one of the main appeals of blogging for many, but it is remarkable to note the totallack of decorum by all of these people, regardless of what side they are on. And this is coming from me!

I'm not the Only One

Apparently, other people's brains have also been transformed into IPods.

Conflict of Interest Anyone?

Looks like Governor Arnold has been staying in touch with the fitness world. So much so that he has apparently vetoed laws restricting the sale of excercise supplements while at the same time taking in revenue from the supplement makers as a consultant for American Media. The best part is, in the contract agreement, Arnold is known simply as "Mr. S." Lovely bit of encoding by the people who bring you this well-written, thoughtful magazine. Finnegan, as you are in LA and a fitness-nut who has met the Hulkster, it seems only too appropriate that you, at some point, should comment on this story which mixes two of your favorite themes, being in shape and into American politics.

The Upper West Side

Is falling apart... What gives?

Fair Punishment

In Zimbabwe, no crime goes unpunished. Especially not the crime of gender bending for athletic glory!

Bernard Goldberg...

...is a bigger part of the disease for which he is purporting to be the cure than he probably cares to admit.

7.13.2005

Rick Santorum

I lied. I'm back.

There's nothing to get me blogging like a good old personal attack on the Senate floor! You know you've screwed up pretty badly when a man who once drowned a woman and got away with it can attack you from a completely firm moral foundation (just kidding, Ted, I've long since fogiven you for Mary Joe. And for the whole William Kennedy Smith drunken-hookers thing... Which never happened)!

Rick Santorum, Republican Senator and promoter of "family values" wrote this article for Catholic Online back in 2002.

First off, the thing opens like an insane religio-polical manifesto, never mind its context, with all sorts of talk of a "new evangelization of America" and with Santorum (strangely) seeing the priest-sex-abuse-scandal as an opportunity for a renewal of trust in the faith's deepest tenets (message not the messengers? Okay...)... But this is nothing. I quote:
It is startling that those in the media and academia appear most disturbed by this aberrant behavior, since they have zealously promoted moral relativism by sanctioning "private" moral matters such as alternative lifestyles.

Where to begin? Santorum on the one hand speciously conflates the promotion of privacy with the sanctioning of criminal behavior, while at the same time implying that it is the public spread of these ideas of privacy that occasions these heinous examples of abuse within the private, separate, largely conservative world of the Catholic Priesthood. By this logic the enemies of molestation and promoters of all kinds of tolerance are in fact the ultimate perpetrators of these unspeakable crimes. Forget the priests (and never mind that this stuff has been going on probably forever, and it is only the growth and development of liberal media as a real political force (cf Watergate) that has allowed for such accusations to be voiced effectively to begin with against the towering beast the Catholic Church), they are simply victims of a society that is too tolerant of their moral failings, and are hence excused from any responsibility.

I could go on, but needless to say, Rick Santorum is one of the stupidest, banality of evil style leaders we have out there. This cat makes Bush seem like Clinton. Whatever happens, Rick Santorum, those of us who oppose you will pit the full force of our intellects against your disgusting politics of bigotry.

The Price of Greed

Ebbers is off to jail, practically for ebber... Sorrry couldn't resist.

I'm all for punishing corporate criminals severely, but I still feel like the murder of a single individual is more detestable than the greatest possible theft (with the possible exception of Judas's "stolen kiss"... Have any activist groups tried to use the "betrayed with a kiss" (Bono's words, not actual Bible) motif to suggest that Judas and Jesus were getting it on? Kazantzakis goes sort of in the direction in his Last Temptation of Christ (Willem Dafoe is my Personal Jesus)... Oh right, Worldcom!), and therefore we shouldn't be punishing thieves in anywhere near the same way we punish murderers... Or am I just betraying my pseudo-aristocratic roots, and should this mo-fo rot in prison for ever for his greed?

I'm slightly confused, but I'm afraid this may be the only post I have time for today. Tune in tomorrow for an obligatory apologos, a day devoted fully to blogging!

Robert Novak

For those interested, here is a link to Novak's original column outing Plame. Someone remind me why Novak isn't in jail?

7.12.2005

Actual Rod...

...we need more information about this situation. Input from other experts on Iranian culture is also welcome.

Person of the Week


Jean Cocteau

Jean Cocteau, brilliant filmmaker/artist/poet/surrealist, was a pioneer of the French avant-garde. His films, in the estimation of Nostradamus, are his greatest achievement, especially his moving and brilliant Orpheus Trilogy. Cocteau was also an early advocate against homophobia. Though openly gay, Cocteau also had several noted and complex relationships with women, lending more credibility to a complex view of human sexuality rather than the stupid manecheistic attitude taken by most people (with gay/straight replacing evil/good).

For his pioneering artistic achievement, we proclaim Cocteau person of the week! Jean Cocteau, we who will someday die salute you!

#-1 Gabrielle Carteris



Gabrielle needs no introduction to children of the '90's. Older or less pop-culture saturated readers may know her only as "Andrea Zuckerman" from the brilliantly conceived/written/directed Aaron Spelling/Darren Starr epic-drama Beverly Hills 90210.

Gabrielle's depiction of Andrea was a brilliant reinterpretation of several TV stereotypes: nerdy girl in love with unattainable but nice "best friend" hunk, nerdy girl who is overly made-up to look worse in order to emphasize her intelligence, nerdy girl who marries (after being impregnated by) hispanic medical student and leaves the show in order to pursue her academic career at Yale, etc...

Gabrielle's depiction was an important influence on a young Katie Holmes, whose character on Dawson's Creek flirted/loved her cool best-friend boy friend much in the way Andrea loved Brandon. However, things worked out on the show and in real life better for Katie. But we know all about that.

Carteris's pioneering work in television, her voice over work on prior-Spielberg-Cruise mega-hit Minority Report, and her especially brilliant appearance in the made-for-TV adaptation of Danielle Steele's Mixed Blessings all have added greatly to the course of human society, and more importantly, to the course of Art. Gabrielle Carteris is without a doubt the #-1 Best Person Ever.

Ebola?

Brad Pitt, fresh from Ethiopia with his praying-mantis girlfriend, Angelina Jolie, has been hospitalized with flu-like symptoms. We wish Brad a quick recovery, but pray to Emerson that whatever happens, he doesn't EVER adopt any kind of absurd pseudo-religion, ala this guy.

Thanks for the Shout-out...

...go to my boy Rich "Hamburger-meister-meister" Berger, of Not About Marquis Grissom. We listen, Rich. We listen, and we learn from your wisdom.

Bombing Theories

Some interesting theories about the London terror attacks here, courtesy of The Independent.

Lance

For the last four years, I have enjoyed watching OLN's coverage of the Tour de France.

Today's stage was incredible, as Lance Armstrong took back the yellow jersey. Whatever you think of the whole "cult of Lance," one has to admire the absolutely vicious tenacity with which this cat attacks the mountains. If he can hold on through the Pyrenees and time-trials, we should be talking about the first ever seven-time repeat champion, a feat more impressive than Michael Jordan's six titles in eight years, a feat arguably more impressive than Bill Russell's eleven titles in thirteen years, and yes, a feat, perhaps, even more unbelievable than Delino Deshields's .295 Batting Average in 1993. Hard to imagine, but it's true.

Madness, Ten Years Gone

Second Zeppelin reference in three posts. Must be a full moon. Or perhaps Jimmy Page is up to some Satanic black Magic, ala Aleister Crowley.

Oh yeah, and check out this insane story of a tank chase in '95 in the streets of San Diego.

San Diego Tank Chase

7.11.2005

Blogtastrophe

So apparently the crazy mo-fo who allegedly kidnapped Shasta Groene, murdered her brother, and quite probably killed her mother, older brother, and her mother's boyfriend was some kind of crazed Christian who wrote a blog... CCD attendees will need no introduction to the "fifth nail" concept. For another blogger's more rational response, along with detailed explanation, check out The Daily Kos... By the way, I was alerted to Joseph Duncan's blog by the maven of our modern Eumenides, Nancy Grace. Thanks friend.

Does Anybody Remember Watergate?

It may not be obvious to most readers, but to dedicated fans of Led Zeppelin, it will be clear that my title is a paraphrase of Robert Plant's assiduously effete rhetorical question inserted in the live version of Stairway to Heaven after the line "And the forests will echo with laughter...", namely "Does anybody remember laughter?" At this point, the disillusioned, drunk, stoned hippies, well, cheer... But I digress.

This whole Karl Rove leak situation is eerily reminiscent of the whole Watergate fiasco... Now, I'm not insinuating that Bush is in any way similar to Nixon, either in paranoia or intellect, but it would be oh so pleasant if the pseudo-country-bumpkin-Ivy-frat-boy was brought down by his own most evil (and by evil, I mean effective!) advisor... But no doubt, this being a time of "justified" war, I'm sure Bush will escape from this pretty much clean (think Reagan Iran-contra)... Now Rove's fate? Only time will tell, but I'm sure he'll have a hefty severance package, or top flight job at Halliburton waiting in the wings, or a job in the Baseball Commisioners office when W takes over that job in '08...

People's Republic Problems...

...sounds like some Gangs of New York style mayhem is going down in China. Let's hope the oppressed have a more vibrant hero than the always anemic Leo...

For those of You...

...who can't get enough, peruse these hilarious Gawker Stills... When will the antics end? Perhaps in the Autumn, when the moon is low and El Ron is under Saturn...

Prophecy

...ask and ye shall receive. I guess I'm not the only one in favor of Universal Health Care after all. Hard to believe.

7.10.2005

The Nerd Within

As a young man, before I went to boarding school and "became cool" (ie started drinking, grew my hair long, became radically leftist, became obsessed with Wordsworth, then Keats (while being vehemently anti-Shelleyan), Wallace Stevens, Hart Crane, finally returning to Shelley without rejecting Keats, Browning, then flirting intensely with Derrida, Blanchot, Battaile, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Levinas, Husserl, Hegel, Kant, Arendt, before rejecting all of them except a few paragraphs of Nietzsche and returning to a deeper, renewed love for Shelley, Whitman and Emerson, while all the while living out the fantasy-turned-reality of becoming a serious rock, then jazz, musician--Where was I going with this?), I was actually a remarkably huge nerd (Imagine, a "reformed" nerd writing a blog... Unthinkable) who enjoyed playing basketball, reading Walt Whitman and Emerson, watching basketball, and also reading stuff by this dude, and even more, stuff by Orson Scott Card.

Even a few non-nerds will have read his classic work, Ender's Game, which follows a futuristic genius through an insidious battle-school with a living computer program as he saves humanity from parasitical alien insects, called Buggers, I believe... The prose is crisp in the "pot-boiler with moral issues" sense of crisp...

But looking on the Wikipedia article about Card, I see he is a "Democrat" who is against gay rights, along with being basically unilaterally pro-Bush... Odd. This made me remember this truly awful and over-written scene in one of his lesser known works (from his Homecoming Saga) where a gay man, in order to "continue the species", is forced to have sex with a woman. Here Card tips his hand as an imaginative weakling. His depiction of the spectrum the gay character is capable of in his erotic fantasies is tiny. Given the circumstances, I'm sure any intelligent gay man would have no trouble imagining he was screwing a guy and not a girl. I mean, it's the future of the human race we're talking about...

Imagination issues aside, I think we understand how gays fit into Card's worldview. In the above mentioned series, a set of something like 10 couples have been hand-picked by this massive computer that has their exact genetic information to make a return voyage back to Earth, which humanity has long since abandoned. Among these people, one is gay... But, because gays are useless, colonially speaking, unless they mate, the guy is forced to be straight, at least in as much he is forced to marry and have sex with a woman! They get along fine, of course, and have children, and actually grow to love each other, with the man repressing his homosexuality entirely, except in his affected mannerisms and speech. Happily enough, the colony is a succesful one, yadah yadah.,, Did I mention Card is also a Mormon allegorist? Therefore, moving, as Card wants us to, from the microcosm of the "colonists" (Mormons) back out to the macrocosm of "actual human society" (which should be like the Mormons) we can see the perfectly obvious thing for gays to do: repress their sexuality entirely, reject it as sin and against "continuing the species" (God's Darwinian Telos), and live amongst straights as a straight... But you can keep your lisp if you absolutely must, and, occaisionally, we will tolerate your being "fabulous" as long as your wife is okay with it and the kids are in bed... Great, Orson, really great. Totally aware of the gay psyche, totally prescient. Moron. I think Tony Kushner may have tackled this subject with a little bit more sensitivity in Angels in America.

Anyway, sorry for the digressive post, but despite my obvious derision for Card's politics and world-view, I'll still probably see the Ender's Game movie if it ever gets made.

Interesting Report

Apparently if you are young and single, you can afford health insurance. It actually took me a year of trying in CT to finally get my health insurance application approved, which was a bit absurd... Though it will probably anger my libertarian readers/friends, I remain firmly in support of some kind of socialized health-care system. The system in place does little but line the pockets of insurance executives, and while some degree of tort reform on the issue of malpractice would probably help a bit, it's a far cry from the drastic overhaul the system needs. Social Security? Why aren't we dealing with the absolute insanity of the health-care system in this country, as, from what I've gathered, Social Security will be okay for something like another 30 years, while uninsured people are, I feel safe to guess, dying this very minute...

The Future is Upon US...

...Well, maybe not so much, but this would be pretty cool.

Really, is this, like, really the last time...

...that I post a story that involves an inquiry into the Terri Schiavo Case?

7.09.2005

Destiny


Destiny, originally uploaded by Anfernee Hardaway is God.

In the eyes of Nostradamus, the future is tinged with the red pangs of dusk.

Beware the night of civilization, and the four-fold beast of deception whose tongue is skeined with a coat of lavender.

But most of all, be mindful of the savage birth that nations wreak in the fantastical background of the mind's restless self-overturning.

The News from England...

...drastic revisions to the initial interpretation of events in London on July 7. The bombs have gone from being home-made to high-tech, and the initial 28 minute span between subway blasts has shrunken so much authorities are now saying the explosions occured almost simultaneously.

Breaking news: A district in Birmingham was evacuated tonight as several suspicious objects were detonated. Read more here. Let's hope things don't descend into a general panic, I myself have been very edgy since all of this latest terror began, and when a prophet is antsy, well, that can't be good!

Finally!

At long last, the first true-9/11 Film, starring Nic Cage, directed by Oliver Stone. Needless to say, this is going to be an amazing film. There was that other film about the hijackers, which I enjoyed, but this should be the real deal... And by real deal, I mean tasteless, grandiose, and, did I mention, tasteless.

Competition?

Apparently, I've got company. Let's hope this is just overblown over-praise.

How is this Possible?

How did I not realize that Ronald Reagan was voted Greatest American in the dreadful Discovery Channel countdown? Wow. Maybe the D/M countdown really was the more serious of the two... And it ain't over!!!

How did I miss this?

I guess as a graduate there would be no reason for me to have been reading the YDN last November, but I'm surprised it took me this long to google "Poetry Lady" "New Haven" (flower tip to The Jesus and Mary Chain of the Blogworld, the ACTUAL God)...

The poorly updated (and generally poorly written) YDN Online seems to be working again, if, like Finnegan, you are obsessed with looking at that site. I only seem to come across it when googling myself and finding hilarious letters to the editor I wrote long ago in defense of the rights of a child-molestor... Some things never change.

Small Victory For Privacy

This ruling against McDonalds for discriminating against an employee with AIDS seems a small victory for the individual against the corporate machinery...

#0 The Actual Rod


Actual Rod, originally uploaded by Anfernee Hardaway is God.

My prolific, liberal-minded blogging cohort The Actual Rod seemed an appropriate choice for the "outside of time/place-holder" space on the Countdown. His witriole, his chiastic incisiveness, his numerous expressions of overt hostility are all invaluable assets to those of us keen enough to follow his lead and learn from his wisdom. Actual Rod, we support you and acclaim to all who care your status as the #0 greatest person ever!

Greatest People Ever Countdown Continued!

That's right, due mostly to intense reader de Mann and to a drunken plan hatched last night with Actual Rod I have decided to continue the Greatest People Ever Countdown indefinitely into negative numbers. Look for #0 soon.

Riemann...

...Any thoughts about this logical proof?

7.08.2005

Best Terror Coverage

For those looking for good, comprehensive coverage of the recent London bombings, check out Wikipedia (link via Hit and Run).

Wow...

Don't know who "Lester" is, but his is a pretty hilarious blog-title, so I thought I'd link to it. Seems like he's a friend of Delino...

Heroes in the News

Amazon's Hall of Fame contains several of my favorites, inluding Rowling and Brown, but surprisingly excludes other such literati as Plato, Nietzsche, and Lincoln... Who knows why?

Welcome Bernhard!

Our blogstaff has expanded again, with Bernhard Riemann being added to staff for his math-related wit.

In the mean-time, Arlo Harshenstein has been busy with these sick, sick, monsters.

Invitation accepted!

Nostradamus,
Thank you dearly for the invitation; I graciously accept. Though I don't consider myself a scientist, I will happily accept the role of "D/M IMRITF" commentator from a perhaps more mathematical perspective. As my first order of business, I feel that This Issue has been too long overlooked. Just another reason I like to stick to math, the unpoliticized un-religified science! Oh wait, there was that whole Manhattan Project....
Feel that wrath, you horribly under-abstracted humanity majors. Feel the power of X.

7.07.2005

#21 Johnny Depp and #14 Michael Jackson

Depp denies the potential-Jacko connection in his portrayal of Willie Wonka in the new Choclate Factory... This reader, for one, is unconvinced.

Real Media

That's right, it looks like we're headed towards the sky, thanks to our friend Dan "Finnegan" Koffler.

I feel refreshed that one of the sites in the "real media" column has now actually linked to this house of madness. In honor of Finnegan's generosity, I present:

Cruise

Spotlights, spotlights, where, when?
How can
I ascend
The beam of light
My alien friend
Shines down on me?
Can it be right,
To say that all psychiatry
Is pseudo-science, simple sophistry?
It must be.
L. Ron Hubbard fathered me.
An alien was mommy.

London

Looks like the Olympic-bid celebration will have to be cut short. Not to make light of the situation, having spent many enjoyable nights in London myself, but the pall this puts on all the recent events (G8, Live8, Olympics, etc.) is pretty staggering. One wonders how Blair's government will respond. I found his televised statement infinitely more sincere than any of Bush's tough-guy post 9/11 speeches, but after what happened in Spain in March '04, who can say which paradigm will be followed in Britain.

One thing I do know is that whenever there is terrorism we should blame it on a shadowy network of Arabs and use it to justify ideolically motivated expansionist war... Because that is a totally effective way of stopping future terrorist attacks. Oh wait...

Instead, perhaps we should fight the real enemies, who are, of course, homosexuals seeking to marry. Sorry. Wrong again.

What Those of Us...

...who are inveterate, constant, addicted internet-users have known for a long time is finally becoming apparent to "the general public". Savvy web-maniacs have switched to Firefox, and many others have made the leap to Mac. Basically, the bottom-line here is that the obvious monopoly Microsoft attempted to create/created for itself back in the late '90's has made their not-all-that-well-designed software easy prey for hackers and malicious internet ne'er-do-wells of every sort, and that, naturally, the consumer has suffered. Perhaps this slight bit of parity is a sign of change, though knowing Microhard, they're no doubt thinking up new ways to limit Mozilla's marketshare...

Freedom of the Press

...something I myself am sometimes slightly concerned about, considering some of the insane and potentially offensive things I've posted in the past (though whether or not writing a blog gives one "press status" is an issue some might still debate...), but this surely can't be a good thing...

I'm also really intrigued by the sudden change of fortune for Cooper... Something about it seems fishy, but I'll leave more speculation to keener minds.

7.06.2005

The Next Target

Going out on a limb here, but after this, I expect US Troops will be landing in Aruba shortly.

This Guy Was Hard

Good-bye, Admiral Stockdale, we never really knew you.

Though best remembered for his bumbling debate against Gore/Quayle in 1992, this article reveals how hard this mo-fo actually was. Dig in particular this quote:
Rather than allow himself to be used in a propaganda film, Stockdale smashed his face into a pulp with a mahogany stool.

"My only hope was to disfigure myself," Stockdale wrote in his 1984 autobiography "In Love and War." The ploy worked, but he spent the next two years in leg irons.

Sounds surprisingly like Actual God's flight from the KGB, back in 87... Ah, the good old days.

7.05.2005

Crystal Anyone?

Apaprently it's all the rage... Never done it. Would love input from readers who have. From what I've heard, it seems like a really powerful speed you smoke. Side-effects seem to include teeth rotting, brain-damage, and hickishness...

Forgiveable Blackness?

This one is for Eric. Let's hope Kasparov doesn't end up at the bottom of the volga, his legs weighted down by a bundle of lead-reinforced white-pieces...

I Ran All the Way to Vienna

Shot someone, and then I ran for President of Iran, and won!

Leave Medical Advice/Directives to Doctors

...because most of the time they actually have a clue what they are talking about, unlike either of these guys.

Live 8

Was completely disgusting, thanks to MTV's utterly banal and typical coverage. My only regret is that Carson Daly wasn't involved (or was he?)...

The arrogance of these performers, to think that hard-minded Machiavels like Bush, Blair, Chirac, etc. could ever possibly care about such a demonstration... In any event, I found this graph in the London News Review to be pretty amusing. Bob Geldof, you moralizing, sanctimonious flower-lady in training, we don't salute you!

7.04.2005

Expansion

Now that Arlo has his own blog, I'm considering removing him from Death/Media. His contribution has been scant, and his rebellion-against-my-Jewish-forefathers-by-being-conservative schtick was never really that interesting. Any thoughts? I think we know how Actual Rod will vote...

That said, I'm really excited about the Delino Deshields expansion. Not About Marquis Grissom, run by Shirpa-turned-blogger Rich Berger, promises to be a wonderful addition to the blogosphere. Welcome, Rich, may all of your anonymous flamers be benign!

My Call for a Boycott...

...has been ignored. In fact, truth be told, I was seriously considering seeing the movie myself last night, until I came to my senses and instead stayed in and watched Savages.

Person of the Week

New week, new person. Since it's the first week in July and on account of it being the fourth I've decided the new person of the week is...



Bernhard Riemann

Calculus takers (in particular fans of integrals) will remember that pesky little total of imagined rectangles, the Riemann Sum. Riemann was also integral to the development of the much-loved (but seldom admired) Zeta Function, which has fascinating implications for the field of Number Theory, which is apparently extremely interesting to some of the people on this website.

Riemann, like so many other heroes, died in transit to Italy of tuberculosis. He, unlike Shelley, is not burried next to John Keats, however, leading to much speculation that the actual cause of his death may have been an early case of SARS.

All speculation aside, Riemann was the Real Man in this prognosticators eyes, and therefore, I repeat with verve, "We who will someday die, salute you, Bernhard Riemann!"

First Fourth Without You

At least that racial-epithet-using, Kennedy-cousin-busting Mark Fuhrman hasn't forgotten you.

Presidential Hopefuls

This is only up here because of the reference (in paragraph 12) to what is sure to be the hot-button issue in 2008 (and if it isn't, rest assured, I'll try my damnedest to make it one) election, Terri Schiavo.

7.03.2005

Actual Shit

Rumors in Iran are that he was involved in the killings but not directly in the Embassy ordeal. I can't quote anything on that, however...so take it as you will. I personally have no reason to think one way or the other, but I am quite certain that the Bush Administration has nothing to lose by demonizing Ahmadinejad. There was probably a lot of ballot-stuffing in the first round, especially in Tehran, but chances are that he won the second round fairly (more fairly, at least, than G-Dubs won Florida in either 2000 or 2004....). So, when Rumsfeld says that Ahmadinejad is 'no friend to democracy', he's not exactly wrong, but then neither is ol' Donny himself. Democracy was never the issue--profit was. As it is, I still don't think that even this Savage Death Cabal has much to gain from fucking with Iran.

Why? Well, here's one angle: China holds billions of dollars worth of US bonds--this, along with the fact that the Chinese Yuan is at a fixed rate to the US dollar, helps to keep the dollar from crashing in value. China desperately needs oil to continue economic growth, and Iran provides a good amount of that oil.

If Cheney were to give the go-ahead to invade Iran, the flow of Iranian petrol and natural gas to China would be disrupted, and the price of oil would consequently rise dramatically. These two factors (the disruption itself and the resulting increase in global oil prices) would create a tremendous headache for the Chinese, who thereafter wouldn't have any reason to keep their capital tied up in U.S. bonds or their currency fixed to the dollar. The Chinese hold a lot of sway here, and Bushco can't really fuck with that. So, they may still fuck with Iran, but it would be more than a tad suicidal, economically. I don't see it happening.

Unless there is already some sort of secret agreement between the Bush Admin and China (though diplomacy isn't exactly their strong suit)...

Actual Rod...

...any thoughts about this?

Hits Against the Base

Looks like the Saudi's are really doing their part in the war on terror. Now if only that nation's fascist monarchy would peacefully dissolve itself and allow totally free elections. According to the Bush Doctrine, if they don't do this, then we will have no choice but to invade.

I'm Back

But only for a little while.

I think this person could use some new activities.

Nostradamus, when he invited Actual Rod and me to join the blogstaff, had hoped that my Judaism and conservatism would be the perfect counterpoint to Actual Rod's radicalized Liberal Islam... Mostly, Nostie has just pissed me off.

I've therefore started a blog of my own, Self-Defeating Self-Affrighting, which will itself stand in conservative opposition not just to Nostradamus, but to all of you liberal idiots. May the blog war get bloody...

Oh yeah, Actual Rod, your posts give ranting a bad name.

7.02.2005

Brooke Shields Post-Natal Onslaught

She's serious.

I hope, for Tom Cruise's sake, he can someday sing with The Legend of Our Generation "I'm so happy, 'cause today I found my friend..."

Good-bye Luther Vandross

Luther, like Prince, has never been given his due by the white media/fans. Luther was an incredible singer and an unbelievably soulful man. His legions of black fans have always stood by him. Unfortunately it took his debilitating illness to draw adequate and appropriate attention to his career, which has been sadly cut short.

We will miss you Luther.

Amber Tamblyn

The other night I posted about this young woman, and I feel I gave her an unfair shake.

Apparently Amber Tamblyn is the star of Joan of Arcadia (which was recently canceled), and her book of poetry is being put out by Simon & Schuster, which I'm pretty sure is some kind of subsidiary to CBS.

Now, I'm sure to those of you who know me, my statements about Amber's poetry sounded like resentment, pure and simple resentment. This was the case. I do resent anyone who gets their book published who isn't named Nostradamus Marquis.

That said, I want to at least give Amber's work a fair shake. Here is the link to Free Stallion.

Here is one of her poems... Some have alleged this poem is in fact by Dick Cheney. You be the judge.

The Power of Music

Let's see if GWB even begins to give a shit about this.

My Girl...

...and the protagonist of my work-in-progress "Proteus, or The Death of Sappho" has some new stuff out after a while.

Feeding Frenzy III

Run to the Florida Panhandle and then run into the water.

If this goes on any longer we are going to have to call this chick.

Welcome Back!

Actual Rod, your verve, your tumultuous verve, has been missed...

Even Arlo Harshenstein has begun leaving comments again. Can a post be far behind?

Oh yeah, the Supreme Court, yaddah yaddah... More content tomorrow, long day of drinking in NYC... Bernhard Riemann and I took a stroll down memory lane, and Arlo even stopped by for a smoke... Paradise Cove, as we used to say.

7.01.2005

Terri Schiavo

Schiavosis like Moses,
My hoes by my toasters,
Hocus the Pocus,
Rhyme fly and die soulless,
Don't rot quite yet, Terri,
Your brain mass is low shit.

Bird baths in midsummer--
I shit on your tricked hummer
Wet like Sherm warfare,
We roll like list lumber.

Terri Schiavo

I haven't forgotten your plight, though much of the MSM seems to have, Terri. I still keep my eyes peeled for stories like this.

Of course, with all the Natalee Holloway coverage of late, there may be a new Death/Media queen on the horizon. I mean, I feel bad for the girl and all, but what the fuck is with all the coverage? How many black children have been murdered/neglected-to-death in Detroit since May 29?

Boycott this Please

The maniac and the mad hatter. Is there any film-maker I hate more than Spielberg? Probably not. Maybe Michael Moore or George Lucas, but Spielberg has both of them by a long shot...

I'm Recommending...

...that the new edition of How to Read and Why include a special postcript solely devoted to these important works of Global Literature.

Time to Party

Or get married, if you are Gay and in Spain. I know Finnegan beat me to this story, but what the hell, seemed important enough to link to anyway... Now if only the Supreme Court would take some Texas gay couple's case and overturn these discriminatory/obviously unconstitutional anti-gay-marriage laws...

Least Favorite Talking-Head

New Feature here at D/etc, my least favorite talking head (not David Byrne, silly), is...

Joe Scarborough

Scarborough is just as bad as O'Reilly and Hannity, but his smarminess factor is actually even greater than those two noted orators, thus rendering him even more despicable. Scarborough Country should be set on fire, or at least illegally transferred to Syria to be burned.

My Newest Suit is Made of Felt

...Also not officially Death/Media related, but does anyone besides me really care?