Saturday, March 25, 2006

Re: 9/11 Conspiracists

And they say that actors aren't very smart. Dude is a genius.

Origins of "SSJ" (conclusion)

See here for beginning.

Michael: Instaguys?
Scooter: Please.
Michael: ...
Scooter: OK. Let's go back to first principles. We've got nothing new to say, right?
Michael: Check.
Scooter: We haven't had an original idea in twenty years.
Michael: Check.
Scooter: Anything we say is going to be derivative of something someone else has already said.
Michael: Check.
Scooter: Dig this: Secondhand Smoking Jackets.
Michael: Ah, "secondhand smoke," secondhand = derivative. Not bad, not bad at all.
Scooter: Grazie.
Michael: AND if we go back to my earlier "Jacks of Spades," we could make it "Secondhand Smoking Jackets of Spades." No, that's just stupid. "Secondhand Smoking Jacks of Spades?" Too long. How about "Secondhand Smoking Jacks?" Which doesn't really make much sense.
Scooter: I kind of like it.
Michael: Eh. I guess we can think about.

* * *

[Next day]

Scooter: OK. I've got a site on Blogger for "Secondhand Smoking Jacks."
Michael: What?? I thought we we're going to talk about this some more.
Scooter: I guess not.
Michael: Fine.

9/11 Conspiracists

LJ, meet Charlie.

Friday, March 24, 2006

What happened to our links?

They seem to have fallen all the way down to the bottom of the page...

Email Virus strikes Scooter Household

Went home at lunch to respond to some of my colleagues' recent posts and my Symantic software went nuts. It is purporting to scan some hundreds, nay thousands, of emails purportedly sent by yours truly. I then get notices, but not for all the scanned emails purportedly sent, about how those emails could not be sent.

I don't use an email program on my home computer, electing instead to use the Yahoo service because of its excellent regularly sends 400-500 spams to the bulk mail portion of the site so I can just delete without having to filter myself.

The Symantec program was running strong for about 90 minutes before I had to head back to the office. I left the program running when I left. I'll be interested to see what awaits upon my return.

Re: Origins of "SSJ"

I've never said "meh" in my life...but I certainly expressed the sentiment.

Back to politics

My recent posts have been purposely anti-political. I'm frankly getting worn out and burnt out with all the left vs right fighting and blaming and finger pointing. But then, I made the "mistake" of watching our fearless leader's press conference the other day. I swear he had either had too many cups of coffee, had gotten lucky that morning with Laura or had forgotten to take his medication for A.D.D. He seemed....almost giddy. It was very difficult to watch. Even harder to listen to.

Watching that got me energized to get back to reading political blogs. Found this on Klos today. A great read (for me) with my morning coffee.

VW commercials

I'm not a big commercial watcher (thank you TiVo and Scooter, what are you WAITING for?!?!) but I LOVE the new series of VW commercials. If you haven't seen them, here is one:

on the engineering tip

I think the appeal for me is the whole German TV / "Sprockets" ("touch my monkey - TOUCH MY MONKEY".... "I'm as happy as a little girl") feel to it.

Re: "very musically challenged"

No, I'm not suggesting that mash-ups are "new" music". I do think the genre is original, creative, cutting-edge, interesting. I've put several on my ipod. Perhaps they won't have the lasting power of the Beatles (I'm still not totally sold on the Beatles-as-the-greatest-band-ever thing), Ella, Hank Sr, etc. but for now, I'm a fan.

And, as I told you in an email, you better get with what's going on in music these days - before you know it, B will be wanting to buy or download this stuff and you, as a good and concerned parent, need to be in touch.

Remember the crap you listened to in Jr/Sr high? Well, on second thought, perhaps I'm thinking of me.....

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Origins of "SSJ"

I'm getting a lot of email along these lines: "Love your site! You guys are great! Only place on the web where a couple of 'nuts and a 'bat can duke it out in a civilized fashion. But what's the deal with your name?"

Well. A considered question deserves a considered answer. Here it is:

One day last year, out of the the blue, I got this email from my good and close friend Scooter:

Scooter: Let's start a blog.

I was thrilled (in the old sense of "terrified" [look it up]) and terrified. What in the world would I be able to blog about? I had not had an original idea in twenty years.

Michael: What? I haven't had an original idea in twenty years.
Scooter: You're right, me neither. Forget it.
Michael: OK.
Scooter: OK.
Michael: OK then.
Scooter: But...
Michael: But what?
Scooter: What if we had a site devoted to esoteric economic theory with an occasional pop culture reference AND some hardcore conservative political commentary?
Michael: Gosh, when you put it that way, count me in!!

* * *

Michael: We're going to need a name. Punditguys?
Scooter: I don't think so. Overdone.
Michael: How about "Jacks of Spades," y'know like "Ace of Spades?"
Scooter: meh.
Michael: Ok fine.
Scooter: How about something with pajamas? [Ed. note: this was when jammies were hot.]
Michael: I dunno, seems like everyone's doing jammies.
Scooter: I've got it. Not pajamas: smoking jackets. Like Astaire and Cary Grant.
Michael: Yeah I like that. But I dunno. It seems a little . . . gay?
Scooter: Yep.

[To be continued]

Re: "Very musically challenged"

I'm going to assume that's me. I don't know that "______-challenged" is the same as "I don't dare." I don't care about the varieties of brussel sprouts; does that mean I'm "brussel sprouts-challenged?" That said, "mash-ups," as the kids call them, are funny novelties. You're not suggesting they're new music, are you?

Which brings me to "new" music. Although I was the first white man (or any other man including the cutting-edge LJ) I know to play and promote a very different sound on an album titled "Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five," I can't stand what has ensued. If this is the future of new music, I'm happy with my Benny Goodman, Frank, Ella, and Hank Williams.

[I'll not recount the whole Joe Jackson story here.]

I never listen to pop or rock radio stations unless forced to in a car with someone else. I've heard only a couple of things in the last ten years that have made an impression on me: The Cranberries and The Barenaked Ladies. The first for the singer and the second for the clever (and very poppish (which I think is a good thing; think Beatles)) melodies and lyrics.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Music blogs and "mash-ups"

Recently, I went to get the oil changed in my vehicle and while waiting, was reading an article about music blogs (where mp3 files can be downloaded free, supposedly) and about "mash-ups".

The article recommended several music blogs and I checked them out and to say they are on the cutting edge of the music scene is an understatement. Since I know at least one of my fellow SSJ'ers is VERY mucically challenged (at least when it comes to current music trends), perhaps these links will help him get in tune to what is going on. What attracted me to these sites in particular were their names...quite clever I thought:

teaching the indie kids to dance again

the suburbs are killing us

more cowbell (a big favorite of mine, since it's named after one of the greatest SNL skits ever)

Now, about "mash-ups". For those who don't know what this is, the term "mash-up" or "bootleg" (or, more commonly, just "boot") describes the result of mixing together two or more records to create a whole new track. Though originally performed live using turntables and DJ mixers, recent advances in sequencing software have taken this art-form to a whole new level.
There are numerous sites that have links to some pretty interesting "boots". One of the best is:

go home productions

check out "ray of gob" (a madonna/sex pistols mash-up).

Here is another:


check out "the southern doors cult" (the doors/the cult)

I feel so "with-it" now.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Re: Spring Break in Corpus Christi

But, if I had been, can one really ever be too old? Ok, I give, had I been, I'd have been way too old. My thrills came at the USS Lexington and the Botanical Gardens.

Condi/Hillary Dream Race Called Off...

It'll never happen now, Tagliabue set to retire from NFL. Ms. Rice can now step away from the dream race and get her dream job.

Re: Where is everybody?

I can only speak for myself:

Had in-laws in town Wednesday thru Sunday.
Was attending the NCAA regional here in Dallas (how does Arkansas lose to Bucknell???).
Tried to stay dry over the weekend with the torrential rains/flooding.

Getting home from the basketball games last night was quite an adventure. We made it, but I hadn't seen street flooding like that since I left Houston.

Were you spring-breaking in Corpus? Aren't you a bit old for that?

Sunday, March 19, 2006

I know my Econ posts are dead...

but I've finally finished VDH's Carnage and Culture. It's time for a book report.

Where is everybody?

I take my first vacation in two years and everything falls apart?