Friday, December 31, 2010
Every so often, I think, "Oh, what a nice pin, maybe I would wear that. How nice of Brooks to make my shopping experience more convenient; I can even buy jewelry here!" But no, the pearls are still glass, and unwearable.
So, dear Brooks Brothers, stop doing things that make me annoyed, or, so help me, I will stop buying your things, and then it's all over, because if you can alienate me, you can alienate anyone.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Yes, they hated women and poor people and they had never even seen a particle accelerator (what a bunch of schmucks), but without them, well, someone would probably have done the work they did, but the point is that they did it and they did it first and their work is prior and our work is contingent. Have you never heard of standing on the shoulders of giants?
Don't ever, ever call them stupid. They weren't stupid. They were possibly more brilliant than you and I can imagine. They thought hard and well about the world as it presented itself to them, and drew the conclusions that they were able to draw. They lacked the method and instrumentation on which we rely, but that does not lessen their accomplishments--if anything, it increases them.
Stop being ignorant blowhards.
Monday, December 27, 2010
Why are Philistines, barbarians, and ghouls allowed to get their grubby hands on my Christmas carols?
But it is so much worse when they attack Christmas carols.
First, I'm pretty sure a lot of people have Christmas carols memorized, and they probably have the real version in their heads, not the emasculated crap version. So they'll be happily singing along and then suddenly the words are wrong, which is no fun. These songs are traditional and you should just leave them be, you joy-destroying hooligans.
Second, they are so badly revised. Let's use, for example, a verse of "It Came upon a Midnight Clear." The left side is the good words, and the right is the words as mangled by politically correct dipsticks.
Yet with the woes of sin and strife
Yet with the woes of sin and strife
You don't know what an "angel-strain" is? Die in a fire. You can't possibly allow "man" to stand for "humans?" I hope you get a stroke when you read Milton. And what the hell is wrong with "love-song?" What could possibly be wrong with "love-song?" I hate you all.
PS I don't know why the columns are hosing everything. My html is apparently insufficient. Oh, well. Suck it up.
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
But then years of childhood indoctrination kick in. "No," you think, "it could have germs on it. My best hope is for gangrene--I'll only have to lose the leg...maybe they can take it off below the knee... Or I could get SEPSIS AND DIE." These are really the only options.
And since death from a tiny piece of wood less than a quarter of an inch long is at best undignified, you decide to tackle the splinter. It went in easily enough.
That's where I'll stop, because you know exactly where this is going and it's kind of an icky place. But really, splinters. Do you have to be so evil?
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Now, most people sing and record the first tune I mentioned. And that's fine. I have reluctantly come to terms with this.
But Julie Andrews's recording has an introduction that basically consists of a riff on Sullivan's tune. "Aha!" you go, "Someone has finally made a good record of this!" But it is a lie. The introduction modulates and then Miss Andrews just sings the same old rubbish you were expecting. It's Julie Andrews, so it could be a lot worse, but why did she have to lie to me?
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
This is awful.
"ack-uh-DEHM" is much better, because as far as I can tell, we're ripping off the French, here, and their word "acadème." The e grave replaces the eta of "Ἀκαδημία" (also making that the stressed syllable, since the accent recedes and we do stress accents where the Greeks did pitch and length accents), and by various other linguistic transformations we also lose the final iota-alpha.
Now, I know what you're saying. The modern Greek eta is basically a long e. Well, fie. One of my most loyal readers will probably get hopping mad with me about this, but I think the modern Greek pronunciation is a depressing comedown from its classical roots, which I maintain we can, in fact, triangulate rather accurately. In conclusion: I don't care.
"ACK-uh-deem" sounds clumsy and churlish, and you shouldn't say it.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
You should not add rhinestones or pink. Pink should appear only on Juventus shirts. And Stade Français shirts. Nowhere else (and, quite frankly, maybe we should have a chat about Stade Français as well). And rhinestones? Are you joking? I want this shirt because I like sports, not because I'm an addle-pated four-year-old magpie.
No one wants to wear a tent, which is what men's jerseys look like on women. It's unflattering and makes one look vaguely trashy. But one would like to support one's team, and sometimes it's simpler just to throw on a shirt instead of pulling a Nancy Pelosi at the NLCS and ostentatiously over-dressing in team colors. (She totally stole my homecoming look, by the way; I've been rocking the black day coat and orange scarf for years. Boo, I say.)
So, dear NFL, please stop running those irritating ads with "You Don't Own Me" until you actually start manufacturing more stuff women will wear voluntarily.
Monday, December 20, 2010
You need to get off at the next stop. Because your children are, as mentioned, hapless morons, you are skeptical of their ability to move from their seats to the door in the time that the train is stopped at that station. Consequently, you get them up before the train stops. Good for you for forward planning.
Except that you have gotten them up in time for this station. And, not only that, but you have, after cleverly waiting until everyone else got off the train and the passengers waiting in the freezing cold have concluded that they can get on the train, shoved your kids into the vestibule between the cars.
Why? Why is this your plan? You have now made it impossible for anyone to get on the train. You have confused the conductor, who thinks you're trying to debark. Now you must turn around and go back into the train car, which will take you several minutes because you must corral your imbecile children, whose reaction to this setback has been to spin slowly and stare blankly into space. You are the worst, and the people who wanted to board the train are now unnecessarily cold and very annoyed.
On a side note, you appear to have been French. This is not even acceptable behavior on French trains. For your sins, I suggest a cage for your stupid children and a chauffeur with a bad attitude and a slow car for you.
Thursday, December 16, 2010
And this is a pain, because my house is a disaster and the Ashes tour won't last forever, don't you know. Couldn't I get ill next week, and just give my whole family the plague at Christmas? It's a nice, old-fashioned gift....
Monday, December 13, 2010
She looks simpering. All the time. She looks passive-aggressive and manipulative and like she'd be ideally cast for the less appealing female rôles in George Eliot adaptations. It's about time for another Middlemarch. I bet Keira Knightley would happily play Dorothea; Miss Mulligan can have Rosamond. Cillian Murphy can be Will Ladislaw. Someone call me.
Anyway. She needs to stop squinting and stop smirking. Approximately now would be great.
(I do owe Miss Mulligan a solid. She was in the best Martha Doctor Who episode, "Blink." In which she didn't smirk once. Complete the thought!)
Saturday, December 11, 2010
First off, he's looking for a rock. Yes, it's a mystic rock; yes, it's very important to that wretched little village. It is not, however, a patch on the Ark of the Covenant or the Holy Grail. It just isn't.
Secondly, it's rather deeply racist. Sure, Indiana Jones is full of shenanigans, and no one is really implying that even Thuggees did that whole still-beating-heart-tearing-gross thing. But many of the presumably incidental details about India are, at best, dubious--chiefly the cuisine.
This brings us to the final point. The cuisine appears to be imagined almost entirely to make Willie shriek and otherwise be a useless waste of space. Which she is, aggressively. And she has a ghastly permanent wave wholly unknown to the year 1935.
Also, there aren't Nazis. So what's the point?
*A barbarism, certainly, but you tell Alan Tudyk that to his face.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
So it's a bad song. And you say, "Oh, but it's a protest song! It's bigger than the lyrics! You have no soul! You probably hate Bob Dylan too!" Nope, protest songs, like all other songs, have a duty not to be terrible. Bad art is always bad art. And Bob Dylan is the worst.
At least John Lennon wrote it, though. You're just recycling a terrible song, without even the added bonus of originality. And sure, you're still protesting, or protesting again. That's fine. Good for you. Write your own song. Write a good song. Do something that isn't re-recording garbage.
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Or you could go to Strawbridge's (when it was still Strawbridge & Clothier), and the little old ladies in the food court downstairs would help you to your chocolate-covered pretzels and caramels.
Now, with the exception of Fortnum & Mason and, on a good day, the Saks on Fifth Avenue, going into a department store closely resembles an intimate interview with a Dementor. They have something like what you want, but it's not exactly the right thing. Like a fool, you search, until in a fit of hysteria hours later you buy the original, not-quite item you rejected. You will never use it.
Wanamaker's and Strawbridge's are gone entirely. So are any number of their regional equivalents. You can still buy things at Macy's, or Lord & Taylor, if you're desperate and you know exactly what you want. And if you are lucky. I miss those little old ladies and the madras ties Bert Pulitzer made for Wanamaker's.
Friday, December 3, 2010
The second (as in "sock 'im in the jaw") is singular, from "him."
They sound quite similar, especially if you have a principled objection to differentiating vowels, but they are not the same. Get it right.
Additionally, he was not a moon-eyed twerp, and he didn't sleep with Octavia. And even if he did, it was not because he was an ineffectual goober in the more irritating stages of puppy-love. Also, he didn't. Because she didn't actually sleep with everyone who lived in Italy in the second half of the first century BC. Though it's obvious why you're confused.
He was also a brilliant naval commander. Tell me, with a straight face, that Schmucky McGee there won the battle of Actium. Do it. You can't. Because it's ridiculous. He can barely string together a sentence.
You got Maecenas dead-on. You cast an alien as Octavian, but oh well. You did so many things so well. Why, Rome, did you ignore every single piece of information we had on Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa?
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
Perhaps the worst part is that it's not even that much longer than normal hair. He probably could have grown it himself. Indeed, maybe it's not even fake; sometimes it's hard to tell, especially in black and white.
But it looks awful.