Wednesday, September 29, 2010

For Sheikh Jabbar, desperate times required desperate measures. He arranged a meeting with Colonel John Tien of the US Army in which he asked for weapons and ammunition for his men to take on al-Qa'ida. At that point, they numbered in the dozens; eventually the forces, later known as the Sons of Iraq, swelled to 100,000. The Awakening had begun.

"People ask me what was the tipping point in Anbar Province," Colonel Tien said in an interview. "I would say 22 November, the day Sheikh Jabbar entered my tactical operations centre and said 'I want you to help me take back my neighbourhood'."

-well that's in depth article that would never be printed in the USA


Possible post idea: Dead comedians, in order

Sunday, September 26, 2010

There’s a case to be made, of course, that soccer is uniquely adapted for the creation of Federer Moments. Unlike tennis, which augments the player’s physical capabilities with a racket, soccer takes an essential physical tool—the hands—away from the player and forces him to compete in a state of artificial clumsiness. Soccer thus emphasizes the limits of the body and the difficulty of realizing intention. When a player does something amazing, we’re apt to see it not as a superhuman feat (he made the ball travel 150mph!), but as a human victory over what’s essentially an everyday difficulty. If the crisis of having a body is that it’s resistant to our will, soccer exaggerates the crisis, moves what you want to do even further away from what you can do, then gives us athletes who do what they want to anyway. That may be why moments of beauty in soccer, compared to those in other sports, nearly always feel like consolations.

-Run of Play essaying Pele and David Foster Wallace is good

Saturday, September 25, 2010

From the archives

So I was sitting here messing around with various and decided to click on some archives and see what I see. It's unpredictable even for me! And this post is memorable. That photoshop took a way long time for its quality, which is low.

Monday, September 20, 2010

A collection of shit

I decided to go through some of the things that never made it on here due to a variety of factors including lack of sobriety and the Philadelphia Eagles. The double line breaks indicate individual posts, originally, and this is in reverse chronological order. Enjoy?

-This is the a title of a post with no content I saved earlier today. Likely related to explaining how to browse for files on a computer for several hours to some white beard who is going to Dubai. With any luck he will be imprisoned. YES YOU CLICK OPEN TO OPEN THE PICTURE.

There is the Jump-Off, the broadcast headquarters of Psychopathic house station WFukOffRadio (call letters WFKO), where a nude model will duct-tape a Juggalo to a stripper's pole and then stuff an Ecstasy pill in his rectum. (Later, the Juggalo will suck tequila from a beer bong and vomit.) There is the Spazmatic Hangout, a dry saloon serving Faygo and the official Juggalo energy drink, ICP's Spazmatic!™, which tastes like a melted freeze-pop mixed with cough syrup (text on the can: "Insane Clown Posse's Frothy, Freaky, Frosty, Refreshing Energy Freshness Can of Shazam!"). At seven in the morning, watermelon-smashing comedian Gallagher will be found there nearly passed out, smoking a joint.
-all kidding aside I kind wish I had gone to gathering of the Juggalos

Big Red Son
Certainly the End of Something or Other, One Would Sort of Have to Think
Some Remarks on Kafka's Funniness from Which Probably Not Enough Has Been Removed
Authority and American Usage
The View from Mrs. Thompson's
How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart
Up, Simba
Consider the Lobster
Joseph Frank's Dostoevsky
-A post about David Foster Wallace's "Consider the Lobster" got as far as this, a list of the essays contained therein

A link about something called "NutriLoaf"

Cars are dicks

"You just don't get it do you, you dumb fuck."

The strange thing about my utter lack of education in management was that it didn’t seem to matter. As a principal and founding partner of a consulting firm that eventually grew to 600 employees, I interviewed, hired, and worked alongside hundreds of business-school graduates, and the impression I formed of the M.B.A. experience was that it involved taking two years out of your life and going deeply into debt, all for the sake of learning how to keep a straight face while using phrases like “out-of-the-box thinking,” “win-win situation,” and “core competencies.” When it came to picking teammates, I generally held out higher hopes for those individuals who had used their university years to learn about something other than business administration.
-business school is fucking worthless

It would be nice if maybe soldiers could die without being subject to sick fetishization by members of the local media.

The biannual goats movie guide (part 1)
If you want to see something swedish
If you want to see something about a Jewish Nazi
If you want to see a spaghetti Western
If you want to see a stupid-funny R-rated comedy
-This didn't get very far, now did it?

Arcade Fire songs in order
Rebellion (Lies)
Neighborhood #3 (Power Out)
Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)
No Cars Go
Keep the Car Running
Half Life II (No Celebration)
Wake Up
Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)\
We Used to Wait
Modern Man
Black Mirror
Neighborhood #2 (Laïka)
Crown of Love
-So incomplete/innaccurate!

He's an over-privileged boy
Who's careless with his words
His actions are the actions of a child
-And that takes us to the beginning of July, I'm done. This last one is a reference to this song by the way.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

This fucking guy

Elsewhere in my brain, this blog is stagnating terribly and may soon be abandoned. But I don't want to act rashly, this thing has been a part of my life for more than four years for better or worse. If it has to die, it will be a slow, painful death. The problem is I have too much "web presence" for my liking, between this and the twitter and facebook and another "professional" blog. I am the online editor of a daily newspaper. Today I wrote a column chastising commenters.

But perhaps the goats will come back in vogue, you never know. I would like to get to 1000 posts before complete abandonment, just from a personal achievement standpoint. And we are getting close, a few more haphazardly posted YouTube videos could do it.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My daughter has come from Los Angeles to live with me. Rhoda is thirty-one, and she used to work in advertising, but now she’s a painter and a maker of other art that I’m not sure how to describe. Her field is bummers. Rhoda’s past exhibitions include leukemia-cluster art, floating-yuan art, water-rights art, and mental-health-funding-cuts art, which was piles of clothes painted bronze and rigged up with speakers that yelled. She has also made a lot of hand art and hair art. Eight years ago, shortly into her new career, while getting the hang of a radial-arm saw, Rhoda severed the index, middle, and ring fingers of her left hand. The surgeons reattached them, and Rhoda recovered nearly complete range of motion, but the shock of the injury caused some of her hair to fall out. She keeps her head shaved close now, a style that improves the plainness of face she inherited from me. Bald, she looks about fifteen years older than she is, but also terrifyingly smart and owlish, Lady Malcolm McDowell

-what the fuck I'm linking to the New Yorker now?

Thursday, September 09, 2010

The juxtaposition of twitter is amazing, sometimes.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

A perhaps inevitable post about DFW and tennis

Watching the U.S. Open tennis for potential brawls, then flipping television channels back and forth between that and a FIBA basketball game between the United States and Angola which was being playing in Turkey barely held my attention. I will say Gael Monfils was mildly amusing, in attempting a between the legs shot in the first set for no apparent reason other than style (pictured). It's unfortunate that shot failed and that he lost to Djokovic, at least from a personal ratings standpoint.

It's natural when watching tennis that my mind, which has read much David Foster Wallace, will start thinking about the things he wrote about the sport. Because they are very smart. There is of course the Federer piece, which is widely read due to its internet availability. And there are other essays too because the dude was way into tennis, having played it as an amateur youth. Many pages of Infinite Jest are dedicated to how pupils at a tennis academy constantly squeeze tennis balls in the hand at the end of their disproportionately larger forehand arm. Hypertrophy. I think "How Tracy Austin Broke My Heart" a book review/essay on Austin's awful autobiography is notable in its ability to break down the athlete-fan dichotomy. Or maybe the pro athlete-amateur athlete-fan trichotomy. Ugh.

Its easy to fall into the black-white assumption of superhuman-pro-athlete v. fat-idiot-fan. But as with all things stark comparisons fall short. Fat slobs like to throw footballs too, and much appreciation of sport comes from playing. Thus a middle ground, in which amateur soccer players like myself watch the World Cup obsessively and those with country club memberships enjoy tennis and golf I assume. Playing a sport gives one more knowledge regarding the intricacies of how the game works -- call it muscle memory maybe -- than one can ever get watching it on a brightly lit screen.

I don't know if this was a point Wallace made in his Austin essay, or if the point is adequately described here, even. There really is no way to know right now because I donated that book to a vacation home. Because it was called "Consider the Lobster" and the cabin is in Maine, a state known lobster. And also because of gin.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

And not to put too fine a point on it, but who freaking cares? All great athletes are arrogant; some just hide it better on camera. The people ladling praise on the guy for saying shucks and thanking the equipment manager and generally being very Beaver Cleaver with everyone—"Durant always asks the [University of Texas] basketball sports information director, Scott McConnell, about his sons by name," the New York Times informs—evidently would rather use athletes as large vessels for vicarious moralizing, something to put down on the mantel next to the Precious Moments figurines, than admit we care about them only because they jump high.

-how dare you belittle media-driven idol worship