Friday, November 30, 2007


"ghoulies and ghosties / and long-leggety beasties / and things that go bump in the night"

Dirty Sexy Money
Money symbolizes the ability to get what you desire.

Why is Noam Chomsky a hipster philosopher? Linguistics.

Chase Daniel for Heisman

I've been looking for a picture online of Kansas quarterback Todd Reesing with turf stuck in his helmet during the Mizzou-KU game and this is the best that I could do. It was amazing. Oh wait, there's a video of it (here).

Continuing on the Mizzou football theme, some friends and I went to a pep rally last night to send our boys down to San Antonio to play OU. It was cool, I guess. Claire and I realized that we really need to work on memorizing the words to the Mizzou fight songs (which are actually kind of hard). I saw Jeremy Maclin - who is amazing - so my night was complete. But not without the incredibly inspiring words of our QB Chase Daniel "It's this simple: Win." His rhetorical skills were the icing on the cake, especially since a video of him eating his own boogers (here) is going around Mizzou. Beautiful.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

hahahaha...look at more of it here: Lark News

Thomas Kinkade for Mizzou

Oh man. I can't believe that Mizzou actually commissioned Thomas Kinkade to do a painting for our 50th Anniversary for our Museum of Art and Archeology. This is embarrassing. Buy one for $650 here.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Lars and the Real Girl

Claire, Awesome, Zanzibar (who got punched in the face by an angry Mexican at a bar and has a swollen cheek! haha), Kathleen from Sociology, and I went to go see 'Lars and the Real Girl' at the Rag Tag last night. It was very different than what I thought it was going to be, and Zanzibar had the same reaction. He just thought that with there being a sex doll as the female lead the movie, it would go more in the 'Old School' direction. I thought it was going to be more lighthearted and funny. But it was wonderful.

I've been interested in the way masculinity is portrayed in the arts and media ever since we started focusing on it in Krew as well as my Critical Theory class. Because all of my classes assign similar paper topics, I've come up with a couple broad theories and bits of social commentary that I use and fit into whatever paper topic it is. One of the ones I've been thinking about is that people are dissatisfied with the social structure and rules that the consumerist materialist world has given them (which is that there are no rules - just buy more crap) and are searching for something more stable: a framework (however imperfect) that they can follow to avoid feeling fragmented and disillusioned. This applies especially in gender roles.

In Krew when we talk about what it means to be a man, it is because there is a general lack of knowledge on how to be a good one. Here's a scene from 'Lars and the Real Girl' that speaks to this (Gus is Lars' brother who is married and about to have a kid - Lars is 27 and single and socially awkward, Bianca's the sex doll that Lars ordered online):

Lars Lindstrom
: I was talking to Bianca, and she was saying that in her culture they have these rites of passages and rituals and cermonies, and, just all kinds of things that, when you do them, go through them, let you know that you're an adult? Doesn't that sound great?
Gus: It does.
Lars Lindstrom: How'd you know?
Gus: How'd I know what?
Lars Lindstrom: That you were a man
Gus: Ahhh. I couldn't tell ya.
Lars Lindstrom: Was it... okay, was it sex?
Gus: Um. Yeah, yeah, yeah, it's uh, yeah, yeah it's kind of - it's uh - no. Well, it's kind of sex but it's not uh, you know? I don't know. I don't know. It's - uh - good question, good question.
Lars Lindstrom: Yeah, but I have to know
Gus: [dryer buzzes] Hold that thought.
Gus: [in basement] You know, you should ask Dagmar
Lars Lindstrom: I did ask Dagmar. And she said that I should ask you.
Gus: Okay, you know I can only give you my opinion.
Lars Lindstrom: That's what we want
Gus: Well, it's not like you're one thing or the other, okay? There's still a kid inside but you grow up when you decide to do right, okay, and not what's right for you, what's right for everybody, even when it hurts.
Lars Lindstrom: Okay, like what?
Gus: Like, you know, like, you don't jerk people around, you know, and you don't cheat on your woman, and you take care of your family, you know, and you admit when you're wrong, or you try to, anyways. That's all I can think of, you know - it sound like it's easy and for some reason it's not.
(from imdb)

And in the rest of the movie Lars slowly tries to put these things into practice, telling a girl who likes him that he can't kiss her because that would be cheating on his woman (Bianca - the sex doll) and so forth. It's wonderful. I think it's really interesting that movies are discussing something like this. I asked my friend from sociology what she thought about the gender roles in the movie but we just talked about how Gus' wife fulfilled the typical gender role of cooking breakfast. We didn't get to talk more. I think it's all very interesting.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Things I'm Interested In

MSNBC Article on Walmart Going Green

Biodegradable Trash Bags made from Corn

Hunter S. Thompson

Gonzo Travel

Gonzo Journalism

Life, it is.

As I am working towards to goal of defining what my life passions are, different words, phrases, and ideas seem to fit together to create the larger vision. One of them comes from an email that wasn't written to me by a professor at Covenant Seminary. It is a broad question that shapes a lot of who Covenant Seminary is and their mission. This question makes me want to go to seminary there. "What do you see in terms of spiritual yearnings within contemporary (popular) culture (in the U.S.A. and globally)?"

I was sitting in my 'Cultural and Intellectual History of the US' class this morning and another image came to me. In contemporary church culture, so much is made of Acts 17, when Paul is preaching on Mars Hill. I think Christians enjoy the image of Paul citing the contemporary secular poets and thinkers to make his own case for the existence of one God and for salvation in Christ. It makes the case that the church shouldn't be a fortress on a hill, separated from society by huge walls of distrust and misunderstanding. It should be a city, with streets leading out, inviting trade and dialogue.

It just occurred to me that that is what inspires me too. My favorite part of being at Mizzou as a Christian is being in a sociology class and being able to see the image of God in the writers and other students as we all discuss culture and the nature of man in society. It's fantastic seeing that what the Bible says isn't all crap and that what it says about human nature and the way God created us in His image can be seen in everything we do. Even the ways we set up power elites and have class warfare speaks to our desire to have the God-like power that got us in this whole mess in the first place (Garden of Eden).

In my history class, my professor acts kind of like an Old Testament prophet, highlighting trends of thought that shifted the American culture. I want to learn how to do that. I want to look at a culture and say, "Here is the foundational issue. Here is where we do not believe God." That would be so cool.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Shanghai Expo 2010

more stuff on what will be there:

Dongtan Eco-City (article)

Cool Hunter article on Dongtan

Corporate Art, pt. 2

Takasi Murakami for Louis Vuitton

This is kind of related to what I was writing about earlier with corporate art. In the Cartoon Issue of the New Yorker, there's a Talk of the Town (those are my favorite - so short and interesting) about the artist Paul McCarthy's installation in New York City. (find the whole article here)

"Business art is the step that comes after Art,” saith Warhol the Prophet, and, thirty years later, we know whereof he spake. The mergers of art and commerce accumulate on every side, as brand-name artists such as Damien Hirst, Richard Prince, and Takashi Murakami endorse and/or provide luxury items for Louis Vuitton, Fendi, and other purveyors. One such venture kicked off last week in the West Village, where Paul McCarthy, a California-based artist known for his reliably disturbing installations, has converted the Maccarone gallery into a chocolate factory. Peter Paul Chocolates LLC, as he calls the enterprise, will operate through the end of 2007, turning out Santa Claus figurines for the Christmas trade."

Art and commerce seem like they would be strange bedfellows. In my intense ridiculously long paper I had to write before break, most of it centered on how the Church has become more commercially focused (megachurches, emphasis on numbers and turn-out, etc.). It seems like capitalism has seeped into the parts of life that are not supposed to be utilitarian and is working at forcing them into a business model. I hate it. It seems perverted.

We're #1

ESPN Rankings

Sunday, November 25, 2007


It took me three hours to get back to Columbia from St. Louis after Thanksgiving Break tonight. It usually takes about 1 hour and 25 minutes. Traffic sucks.

This is an example of good advertising. They gave a link to, which gives further links to alternative modes of transportation. It would be great if Amtrak stopped in Columbia (the closest stop is Jeff City - 37 min. away). A ticket costs about $16-20. Not bad. The train takes a little longer than I do speeding - 2 hours vs. 1.5

Deer and Culture Shock

My Mom sometimes orders fillet mignon from a butcher in New Franklin, MO, about a half an hour away and I have to go get them. This was on their door. If you can't read it, it says "Please check in your deer at the back (in the alley) and keep your tag. Thanks!"

Sometimes I forget that people hunt and that I live in Missouri.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Reason #3 to Love Guinness Beer

My sister in law told us today that she found out from my brother and her brother that the Guinness World Records was actually started to solve pub debates. Awesome. Here's an excerpt from the Wikipedia article on it:

"On 10 November 1951, Sir Hugh Beaver, then the managing director of the Guinness Brewery, went on a shooting party in North Slob, by the River Slaney in County Wexford, Ireland. He became involved in an argument: which was the fastest game bird in Europe, the golden plover or the grouse? That evening at Castlebridge House, he realized that it was impossible to confirm in reference books whether or not the golden plover was Europe's fastest game bird.[2]

Beaver thought that there must be numerous other questions debated nightly in the 81,400 pubs in Britain and Ireland, but there was no book with which to settle arguments about records. He realized then that a book supplying the answers to this sort of question might prove popular.

Beaver’s idea became reality when Guinness employee Christopher Chataway recommended student twins Norris and Ross McWhirter, who had been running a fact-finding agency in London. The brothers were commissioned to compile what became The Guinness Book of Records in August 1954. One thousand copies were printed and given away."

Sweet. So, not only did Guinness give us great beer and a great theologian, it also gave us a fantastic way to resolve pub brawls.

MU-KU game

This is the best that Mizzou football has done in a very long time. If you don't know what I'm talking about, Mizzou (where I go) is playing Kansas right now. Mizzou is ranked #4 in the country and Kansas is at #2.

My friend Allie's brother is at the game right now at the Chiefs Stadium in Kansas City. It's kind of funny how he got the ticket. He bought it online, paying $30 for the ticket and $120 for a rally towel that went with it. So, basically, this is how scalpers are getting around the anti-scalping laws.

In a silly yet descriptive article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (here) about Missouri state laws on scalping: "Missouri law doesn't outlaw ticket scalping for nonsports events. The law against scalping sports tickets is repealed effective Nov. 28. Anti-scalping ordinances in St. Louis and Kansas also will be abolished, a spokesman for Nixon has said."

I guess this is the same argument that says illegal drugs would be safer and more regulated if they were legal. Well, we'll see.

Friday, November 23, 2007

World's Fair

Remember the World's Fair? Well, if you're from St. Louis you will, because it is constantly referenced as the glory moment in St. Louis history. It's the setting for Meet Me in St. Louis, it's how we got most of Forest Park, and is overall the best moment in St. Louis' life (besides Mark McGuire, of course, forgive me).

Yesterday I was thinking about all this and was wondering - Do they still have World's Fairs? And if they do, what does one do there? Lovely Wikipedia told me the answers to these questions:

1. Yes they still do, every 5 years, and the next one is in Shanghai, China in 2010
2. From what I can tell, most World's Fairs are about the city and what it is doing to improve technology, the economy, and life for its citizens and for the world. Pretty sweet.

Shanghai for May-October 2010, anyone?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Current TV

My brother, who teaches Media Literacy at a high school in Chicago, always has his finger on the pulse of the new media technology scene. Yesterday he showed me and my Dad Current TV, which is kind of like a TV on the internet made up of better-produced YouTube-style programs. Looking at it briefly, it looks like the future of TV news. Each story is presented on the front page and you click on it and watch a 3-18 minute video on it.

The reason Steve's interested in it is so that he can give his students the assignment to make a news story for themselves and submit it to Current. It's awesome. They post a bunch of topics that they want covered (see them here) and you can choose which one you want to shoot and submit it. They also pay you. I think this is perfect for my friend Dan, who's in film school in LA, but he always views my ideas with skepticism.

This type of news journalism is the new frontier, I think. Some Journalism Grad Students gave a presentation on this in my Social Change and Trends class. They talked about a thing Minnesota Public Radio (NPR) is doing called Public Insight Journalism. Instead of interviewing "experts in their field" for articles, Minnesota Public Radio interviews actual normal people who deal with the issues on a daily basis. It's all very postmodern.

Oh, and did I mention that Current TV is the brainchild of Al Gore and Google? Figures. Here's the wikipedia article on it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


"Everyone complains about media overload, but no one, including me, wants to give up access to magazines, newspapers, TV, blogs, or Web sites - the thousands of sources of urgent or frivolous assertion. We are caught, willy-nilly, between hunger and surfeit, curiosity and dismay."

- David Denby in The New Yorker

True that. This was in a review of his for the movie "Redacted" that looked awesome, but, according to Denby "is hell to sit through" because of scenes of rape and other stuff. Here's the trailer that makes it seem wonderful (trailer).

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Top Gear

I was watching BBC America (which means I'm better than you) last night and I was watching the show 'Top Gear,' which is apparently pretty popular in the UK. It's hilarious. I haven't laughed out loud and that hard at a show since the 2nd season of 'The Office.' I don't know how you can, but if you can, check it out.

While I was in England this time last year at L'Abri, we got The Guardian at the Manor House and one day Luci, the artist in residence, was reading it was like "Oh no!" The headline read "Top Gear Presenter 'Nearly Died': Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond has revealed he was "close to death" after he crashed in a jet-powered car." (here's the BBC article)

Well, Richard Hammond is adorable. And it would have sucked hard core if he would have died because he's wonderful.

The basic premise of the show can be described in how Hammond almost died:
"The 36-year-old had been driving a 300mph jet-powered dragster when it veered off the track at Elvington airfield, near York, in September." -- It's like 'Mythbusters' except funnier and on crack.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Corporate Art

Why is it that the best and most beautiful art is made by advertisers? Why is it that the only people putting up any kind of real money to be creative are corporations?

While I was at L'Abri, one of the workers emphasized the idea that the Church should be one of the major patrons of the arts, if we really believe that God made us creative in His image.

That said, here's some really stinking cool corporate art, while we're waiting. All are from Sony Bravia. There are three that rock. One has paint, one has bouncy balls, one has play-doh bunnies. They're all really cool. You can find them in better definition at their website: Sony Bravia Europe
Here's crappy YouTube versions. I think Claire showed me these, thanks Claire.

Shooting at Triki-holla

My sophomore year I lived with Cassie, Julie, and her sister Jaime at 5383 Trikalla. This past Friday I was hanging out there and we heard some shots and we joked that they were gun shots. There were police cars down the street for the rest of the night. We just thought some lady got scared at the car backfiring and called the cops. Au contraire...

Man wounded in Trikalla gunfire - Columbia Tribune
A 36-year-old man suffered multiple gunshot wounds Friday night during a disturbance near the Lake of the Woods area...Atkins said the victim told deputies he returned gunfire at his assailants... The shooting occurred at about 7 p.m. outside of 5369 E. Trikalla Drive in the Godas subdivision, according to neighbors... Hudson said the victim has introduced himself to neighbors as "Cornbread" and "Big Daddy."

Last Semester at Mizzou. sigh.

(me in my dorm freshman year)

I finalized my schedule for my last semester at Mizzou today. I have to admit, it's a little more serious that I wished or thought it would be, but I (true to form) left my two science lab credits that i need for my major until the last semester, thinking they would just go away if I waited long enough. Here it is:

(Anthropology) Intro to Biological Anthropology - the class description says that the class goes over the evidence for evolution. I always wanted to sort out what I believe about evolution. Here's my chance. Prayers for wisdom, please.

(Biological Sciences) Basic Environmental Studies - this is my required lab. I always wanted to know more about the environment. woo!

(Human Development and Family Studies) Adolescence and Young Adulthood - I've been wanting to take this class since I got to Mizzou. Eric Larsen and David Morris got me interested in looking at youth ministry from a developmental perspective, I think it can add a lot of insight on what kids can grasp.

(Rural Sociology) Global Perspectives and Realities - this is the class by the teacher I have for Social Change and Trends. He rules. This is a class about how to live abroad. At least I'm hoping.

So, I graduate Saturday May 17 2008 at 1pm. Huh.! Kindle

I went on this morning to buy some boots (weird) and on the front page they announced Kindle. It's kind of like one of those flat laptops where you can write stuff on it. Except with this you read books. Kind of like an iPod for books.

Years ago my brother (who kind of always makes incredible predictions about the future and technology) said that one day we will all have one piece of paper (or a full newspaper is what he actually said) that will change from day to day and update itself to the news for the day. Maybe this is progress in that area.

Reuters article on Kindle.

Hey and here's another online TV service...

Pioneer's Sync TV (read the article here)

you have to pay $2 per channel. boo.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Church and Masculinity

It was so good being back at my church this week and kind of being in the place where I'm most me.

With the influence of Anthony Bradley and David Morris, the youth group has been focusing on masculinity and discussing what it means to be a man of God. It's been wonderful.

In my sociology classes at Mizzou, I am used to thinking about gender in one of two ways:
1) males, being in power and receiving the most privilege in our society, have taken all good things and have greedily withheld social capital from others, especially women and minorities.
2) the gender binary (male vs. female) is a social construction, and so doesn't really exist and can be changed. And aside from biological differences (which can be altered with surgery, of course) there's not really any thing that defines a male as acting like a "dude" and a female acting like a "girl." and that "girlness" or "dudeness" is socialized into people - there's no real hard and fast definition for either.

In my Critical Theory class, my professor has kind of had the view (that he's brought up in different discussions) about the myth of masculine privilege. He cited the author Herb Goldberg who wrote all these books (here) but most notably
The Hazards of Being Male: Surviving the Myth of Masculine Privilege

As I understand our culture's position (by way of looking at advertising, tv, mass media) a man is his athletic ability, sexual conquests, and economic success.

The Ivory Tower (if you can even feel comfortable calling Mizzou that) says that a man is whatever he wants to be and feels most genuine doing (there is no real definition for "manliness"). However, what he feels most genuine and satisfied doing is what God created him to be. And it is ultimately sin that confuses us and tells us to be things that we shouldn't.

For example, it being the holiday season, and me being a woman, I feel the inexplicable urge to go to the mall. Like everyday. I don't need to go to the mall.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Belz @ The Artisan

I went to a poetry reading tonight at the Artisan of my old Worldviews teacher, Aaron Belz. It rocked my face off. Awesome and Julie were a little less enthused. I thought the three poets who went ahead of Belz were really good and some were funny and many of the poems were really beautiful.

Belz gave a discount to his students in the audience (two of whom I knew...where else did he teach? Or...Belz, if you read this: where else did you teach?) if they bought his book, and so I did. It's called The Bird Hoverer and it's on Mondo's favorite books list even though HE HASN'T READ IT.

My favorite poem of the night was the first one he read:

"Among Birds"

Having spent the better part of the morning
among birds, having heard
what they whisper
to each other as the sun comes up,

having noted how they name their offspring,
with names like Fuzz Packet and Mr. Charming,
Devily Doo and The Potato Famine Boy,

having observed, if momentarily,
as they begin to glide, their haughty eyes
and knife-like toes,
I hereby reject birds
and not only birds but
the places where they dwell, the patterns
of their lives, the very cosmic instinct
that brings them into being—in fact, the skies;

having been raised by birds and
having nursed at their impossible teats
and been subjected to their whimsical
sarcasm, also having been approached by
them on several occasions—

when my star had risen and theirs perhaps had not—

in the name of
neighborliness or good citizenship and having
politely asked them to step off,
can't you see
I'm busy, type of thing, and having quietly
informed them that I no longer belong
to their so-called tribe,
I hereby request
that they wipe the silly smirks off their faces
and find other people to circle, other places
to drop their glob-like feces, and that is all
I ask of them, not that we can't exist on the same
planet, free-thinking individuals,
in equal

if separate and clearly demarcated communities.

Poem that should have been read Mitch Hedberg-style:

"Hidden Microphones"

I am all about hidden microphones.
If you pay me a certain amount of money,
I will plant a certain number of microphones
around your home, or a friend's home.

Conclusions from the night (mostly based on the readings of the two female poets who went ahead of Belz):
- If I ever become a poet that people come to hear read my poetry I will be a lot more expressive in my voice than they were, with hand motions and rhythm in my voice.
- I think Belz's poems were ten times more funny if you had him for class.

I'm on!

When my brother and sister-in-law were in town this past Sunday we were playing out on the quad and a Journalism student came up and asked us if we had any Autumn/Thanksgiving recipes that she could put in on the website.

I gave her one from L'Abri that rocks my face off. It's a Chestnut Soup recipe from Edith Reitsema, a worker at English L'Abri.

Here's the link to the article: ( - Chestnut Soup)

Now that I'm writing this, I hope that Edith doesn't mind that her recipe is in print.

I Want to Read This Book...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Jerram Barrs and Fan Art

Jerram Barrs came and spoke at my church tonight! It was really cool. He spoke on 'Harry Potter and the Power of Sacrificial Love' or something and it was wonderful. I forgot how very exact L'Abri speakers are, no matter what their topic is. Jerram treated Harry Potter like he was Sartre or something by the way he analyzed the text and brought up key points, etc. It was amazing and extremely impressive.

He also addressed the Dumbledore coming out as gay thing, which is something that I was wondering about. Barrs' perspective on it is that Dumbledore had the gay crush on his friend during a time in his teenage years which Dumbledore looked back upon with shame. Interesting that JK Rowling came out with it at all. I wonder what her thoughts were on the whole thing.

Well, anyway, I was sitting next to my friend Shaun, who's a big fan of Harry Potter and is slowly introducing me to the world of Anime and all the glories that come along with it. Well, one thing that I had no idea existed is Fan Art. Apparently people fill in the gaps left by their favorite authors/video game creators/movie directors, etc. and create their own art about the characters. She sent me a video that her friend made about the would-be relationship between Severus Snape and Lily Potter. This will only be sweet to you if you have read book 7 and like Dashboard Confessional. Just a warning.

Covenant College and Worldviews

My Postmodern Poetry class had a day at the Heidelberg (a pretty popular college bar here in town) where we shared our Postmodern collage projects (the reason I haven't been posting 4 times a day like normal lately). The beer was flowing and the projects were really cool looking. I think mine was the least creative and took the least amount of effort/planning out of everyone, but Ronci said I got an A, so I'm okay with that.

But anyway, to get to the point (and the title of the post), I was sitting in line to get graded behind a girl named Ann in my class and she was making small talk with the guy in front of her and I heard her say that she spent her first two years of college at a little place called Covenant College in Chattanooga, TN. It's not every day (or any day at Mizzou, actually) that you hear those words, so I asked her about it and we started talking. It turns out her father in law went to Covenant Seminary when he had a mid-life crisis and decided to be a pastor. Weird. Small world. She also knew of Aaron Belz, who will be giving a poetry reading (that I'm going to) tomorrow night at the Artisan.

So Ann and I were talking and I was telling her about my major and that I wanted to go to grad school for it and everything and she mentioned that, growing up in the PCA she had always studied about worldviews and saw the world through the lens that everyone had their own personal worldview based on what culture they grew up in and their beliefs about reality. But, she made the point, that secular education is just catching up. Most of our postmodern poetry class was about worldviews. Our collage project was about the postmodern worldview and the shift from the modernist one that was predominate before that. No wonder I'm interested in this stuff, I was practically raised to think this way.

At my Christian high school we were taught apologetics by way of worldview (The Universe Next Door by James W. Sire was one of my Worldviews class textbooks) and had to write papers about how our worldview was affected by this and that. That is why I think this way about culture. It was a great conversation.

I LOVE these shoes...


"So Edgar Allan Poe is in this Car" by Terry Jacobus

So Edgar Allan Poe is in this Car

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Regina for an Hour is Worth...

Claire, Twinkle-Toes, Cassie, and I drove up to St. Louis (eeee!) last night to see Regina Spektor at the Pageant. We had dinner at Blueberry Hill that went a little long, so we missed the opening band (Only Son?) but from what we heard they weren't all that great anyway.

So, Regina's a little bit of a diva (in a hipster anti-folk type of way, of course) and ONLY PLAYED FOR AN HOUR! Yes, that was one of the most awe-inspiring jaw-dropping musical hours I've ever had, but still. Come on, Regina.

She seemed a little high in a way that is appropriate for musicians, and Claire and I breathed a sigh of relief when she recognized what city she was in. "St. Louis is beautiful. You guys are beautiful."

Doors opened at 7, Only Son was done by 8:30 and Regina went on at 9:20 and the concert was over (including the weird encore ritual, why do they do it?) at 10:30. Lame.

By far the best part of the show was when Regina and this other guy (I forget his name) got up and did an a cappella/beat box version of 'Hotel Song' (here's a video of them doing it from another show). My jaw dropped. Her voice is AMAZING.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

I Miss St. Louis

virtual vs. reality

I'm doing a group presentation on Monday and my part is on blogs and social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. I'm reading a book for it called Interpersonal Divide: The Search For Community in a Technological Age by Michael Bugeja that I'm really excited about. Here's a short description of his idea from the preface (which is how far I've gotten):

"The phrase interpersonal divide concerns the social gap that develops when individuals misperceive reality because of media overconsumption and misinterpret others because of technology overuse. This book analyzes "the interpersonal divide" from different vantage points...detailing the overselling of media and technology and the impact on our behavior when we spend too much time in virtual rather than real habitats."

For my Critical Theory class I'm reading Kalle Lasn's (of Adbusters fame) Culture Jam: How to reverse america's suicidal consumer binge - and why we must. Here's something interesting that he says that is similar to Bugeja's point:

"But I wondered how they'd score on a 'reality index' - which I define as the ratio of time spend in a virtual versus a 'real' environment. The measurement is easy enough to calculate. Jot down in a notebook the number of times a day you laugh at real jokes with real people in real situations against the number of times you laugh at media-generated joke, the amount of sex you have against the amount of sex you watch, and so on."

Very interesting.

ebay with the Dalai Lama

Holy cow, you can bid to own the 14th Dalai Lama's 1966 Land Rover. Currently the bid is at $75,000. All proceeds go to his foundation. Any takers? (eBay page).

Mafia vs. Cowboys

Raid uncovers 10 Commandments of the Mafia

The BBC reports that when Italian police searched a Mafia boss' hideout, they found a list of ten rules for proper mafioso etiquette.
1. No-one can present himself directly to another of our friends. There must be a third person to do it.

2. Never look at the wives of friends.

3. Never be seen with cops.

4. Don’t go to pubs and clubs.

5. Always being available for Cosa Nostra is a duty - even if your wife’s about to give birth.

6. Appointments must absolutely be respected.

7. Wives must be treated with respect.

8. When asked for any information, the answer must be the truth.

9. Money cannot be appropriated if it belongs to others or to other families.

10. People who can’t be part of Cosa Nostra: anyone who has a close relative in the police, anyone with a two-timing relative in the family, anyone who behaves badly and doesn’t hold to moral values.

Compare it to Gene Autry's Cowboy Code (from 1930), which I think is just about the best set of rules for living a good life that I ever seen:
1. The Cowboy must never shoot first, hit a smaller man or take an unfair advantage.

2. A Cowboy must never go back on his word, or a trust confided in him.

3. A Cowboy must always tell the truth.

4. A Cowboy must be gentle with children, the elderly and small animals.

5. A Cowboy must not adovcate or possess racially or religiously interolerant views and ideas.

6. A Cowboy must help people in distress.

7. A Cowboy must be a good worker.

8. A Cowboy must keep himself clean in thought, speech, action and personal habits.

9. A Cowboy must respect women, parents and his nations's views.

10. A Cowboy is a patriot.

Link (Via The Day The Tried to Kill Me)

(all from the Boing Boing article here.)

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I'm Old Gregg!!

So, I was perusing American Apparel today (and wrote a strongly worded email to them about the massive amount of female nipple on the site - gross) and came across their Halloween costume competition and this one made me laugh out loud:

If you haven't seen the video yet, here it is (from The Mighty Boosh from the UK)

In the Spirit of Christmas

...I've been listening to the only Sufjan Stevens albums I can stand: his 5-disc Christmas Songs collection. It's wonderful in a slightly-sad elvish Charlie Brown Christmas way.

I stumbled upon this article about family Christmas by Cintra Wilson (who writes for Nytimes and and it's the first time I've laughed out loud in the computer lab at an article in a long time. Read it here.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

My Kitchen Stove

I’m looking forward
to having my own kitchen
and never cleaning it.
But rather

letting it get dirty
and grimy and gray.
So that once in awhile
I look, in panic

at my stovetop
all covered
in little bits
of my past

foods. All
varieties and color,
and new found
textures. Now

that they’ve lived
longer than
expected when
they were first made.

U.S.A. is the slice of a continent. U.S.A. is a group of holding companies, so me aggregations of trade unions, a set of laws bound in calf, a radio network, a chain of moving picture theatres, a column of stockquotations rubbed out and written in by a Western Union boy on a blackboard, a publiclibrary full of old newspapers and dogeared history books with protests scrawled on the margins in pencil. U.S.A. is the world's greatest rivervalley fringed with mountains and hills. U.S.A. is a set of bigmouthed officials with too many bankaccounts. U.S.A. is a lot of men buried in their uniforms in Arlington Cemetery. U.S.A. is the letters at the end of an address when you are away from home. But mostly U.S.A. is the speech of the people.

-- John Dos Passos Nineteen Nineteen

My First Mosh Pit Injury least that I can remember and that I actually got a visible bruise from.

Okay, maybe you can't see it that well, but it is definitely a heel-mark on the top of my foot. It's from the Ludo concert on Halloween. It was really fun but (as mentioned in Awesome's video) there were these really creepy guys in front of us. In fact, it was probably them who stepped on my foot.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

New SLAM Expansion: Ew.

The beloved St. Louis Art Museum is expanding and building a new Modern Art Wing.

Gross. I think it clashes with the beautiful architecture for the rest of the building. Why oh why?

SLAM website on the expansion (here).
Horribly written St. Louis Post-Dispatch article on it (here).

Check out the artist's renderings:

When People Have 2000's-Themed Parties in the Future, They Will Dress Like This:

Pink parodying the Olsen Twins in 'Stupid Girls'


by the way, what is the correct word for the 2000s? twenty-hundreds? oughts? oh-ohs?

Classes That Should Exist

Mizzou has a massive amount of classes that are offered each semester. I tried scrolling through all of the classes for next semester and there are literally thousands. I just found out that there are riding classes you can take at Mizzou - like horses. Who knew? But anyways, if I could invent classes at Mizzou that they would teach, these would be them.

Well, first of all, I would have them make a real Cultural Studies major (named after me - in the style of Stephen Colbert naming things after himself - Canadian hockey team mascot and Hungarian bridge). Having a real Cultural Studies major would make things a lot easier, who knows, it might happen in the future. But here are my classes:

Philosophy of Advertising
Sociology of Fashion and Trends
Sociology of Blue and Red States
Intro to Cultural Studies
Cyclical History
Postmodern Literature
MTV and Modern Media
Geography for Americans
Current Events
Generational Interactions
Cultural Movements
Collective Behavior (as in, actual crowd behavior, not the sociology class on 'how to protest stuff' under this title currently)

That's all I can think of right now, I'm sure there's more. I've already taken most of the ridiculous I-can't-believe-this-is-a-real-class classes so far. Conspiracy Theory, the Amish one, I almost took a class called Grapes and Wines of the World where you do wine tastings a lot but I heard it's actually pretty hard and you have to do chemistry. Boo. I'm pretty excited about my Home Horticulture class next semester.

'Learn Something New Everyday' Department

In my Social Change and Trends class yesterday a grad student gave a presentation on wind mills/turbines/huge pinwheels. It was fascinating. Overall, I found out, Missouri is not a very windy state, in fact we rank 43rd in wind production. Too bad. But we also have 2 (and a 3rd coming before 2008) wind farms that are on the electricity grid! Way to go Ameren UE for doing it too. Here's the site for the developers (Wind Capital Group) Woohoo!
I love Rural Sociology majors. They're so cool and offer such a different perspective on issues. It seems like its so uncool to worry about entrepreneurship in small towns, but they do. I think it's great. Also classes in the Rural Sociology department are always taught by people who only teach like one or two classes and have actually done what they're teaching for decades. I took an Amish class by a guy who was raised Mennonite and like 102 years old and it was terrific.
Well, anyway, back to wind turbines.

Windmills are HUGE!

This was taken at Bluegrass Ridge wind farm in northwest Missouri.

Monday, November 5, 2007

If I met Jean
I would make
him a sandwich a daughter.

and talk to him
in the backstage
saying 'Good
job, man'


Sunday, November 4, 2007

TV on the Internet

Well, as I mentioned before, my friends and my favorite illegal TV/Movie website got shut down (TV Links) and so I have been shopping for a new one since. Here are a couple promising (and legal!) candidates:

Veoh - A little clunky. It's mostly a flashy guide to all videos currently on the internet through YouTube, Google Video, etc.

Joost - my favorite so far. Joost has bought rights to some TV shows, especially old ones like 'Charlie's Angels' but I haven't quite figured out the system yet.

Hulu - very flashy and secretive. They're only in the beta stage right now and won't even let me get on. They bought more rights to TV shows (actually the ones you want) like the Office and Scrubs. Cool. But according to the NYtimes article on it (here) there will be tons of advertisements. Boo. But, hey, it's the future.
And, reason #2 that Hulu is the future? This vision: "Hulu has a unique agenda: to marry the largest collection of professionally-produced video to the widest audience possible. “We don’t have to worry about showing TV schedules or letting fans get to know the actors,” he said. “All we have to worry about is the video.”
In the age of TiVo, this is all that a TV provider can do.