Let’s get boozy pt.2

Looking to serve your guests something a bit more special than beer from a bottle this holiday season?  Well, read on.  But first, a few pointers.  When serving warm punches, keep them an a slow cooker and keep serving glasses warm by placing them in a hot water bath, and make sure you have enough cups that can handle warm liquids.  For cold punch promise me that you won’t use ice cubes.  Seriously.  I want you to promise me. Okay? All right. Instead of those evil taste weakening ice cubes how about thinking ahead and freezing some juice, or ever better, use frozen fruit.  At the end of your drink you’ll have some delicious booze infused fruit.  If using any carbonated beverages in your punch, make sure to add them last, you can mix the rest of your ingredients and top individual glasses with your fizzy beverage.  Lastly, don’t cheap out on the liquor just because it’s going to be mixed with other ingredients, your guests will notice.  Trust. Continue reading

Show me on the doll where the TSA touched you

So the new right-wing talking point of the week is that suddenly the TSA’s pat-down methods go too far. Jalopnik today gave space to a truly ridiculous piece of whining by an aggrieved USAirways pilot:

For approximately five years I have been questioned, wanded and patted down every morning each day I report for work. I’ve asked for help with a solution, I’ve been through all the company and union channels to no avail.

So this has been a pressing concern of yours for FIVE YEARS, long before Obama was ever in office… yet it’s suddenly a pressing concern for you?

Approximately one year ago, I encountered something new called a groin check. This is where they run the back of their hands down your fly from top to bottom one inch to either side. I said I would allow this if they don’t touch my stuff. The screener accused me of being a “homophobe” and said he can’t guarantee he wont touch me in this area. I said then I can’t go through the check. I called the airline for direction and they agreed to assist me in finding a solution if I would JUST take the flight out. I allowed him his groin check and was so humiliated and enraged that I was pretty much useless in the cockpit, I was self-absorbed.

Yes! A professional airport screener running the back of his hand over the outside of his pants made this guy “humiliated and enraged.” So enraged that he admits he basically couldn’t do his job. This is an example of a professional pilot, one so overcome by the mental and emotional turmoil of a pat-down that he couldn’t be bothered to help fly the plane. Oh, and this guy is being trotted out by the Rutherford Institute, the millenarian Christian right-wing think tank (best-known for representing Paula Jones) that’s now supporting this idiot’s crusade against airport frottage.

This guy tells us how later on he refused the full-body scanner and so was forced to get a private screening.

I requested a private screening with the Captain as my witness (you always have the right to a witness.) They started in my shirt collar, went inside my pants waistband all the way around, up inside my crotch and squeezed around from the front each side and up the backside both sides. I was groped 4 times total! Next they rubbed my whole body down with a full palm pressure…including my buttocks and the front groin one inch either side of my fly.

That poor, poor captain. I can’t even imagine having this guy for a co-worker, being begged to follow him into his TSA pat-down like a child about to visit his eccentric uncle. And the way he describes it is hilarious. It’s like he truly believes that poor, poor TSA agent was turned on by the whole thing. Keep dreaming, dude.

Look, I’m not saying the TSA pat-downs are a great idea. There’s evidence that they’re simply not an effective way to screen passengers and people shouldn’t be treated like criminals, but this is idea that TSA employees are “groping” travelers is ridiculous. Alex Altman of Time.com notes that 81% of Americans are ok with the TSA pat-downs.

Today while the TSA’s director testified before Congress, George LeMieux, the Republican Senator from Florida, said “I’m frankly bothered by the level of these patdowns. I wouldn’t want my wife to be touched in the way they’re being touched.”

Think about that for a second. This is absolutely in-fucking-sane. We’re talking about patdowns, in an airport, with all clothes on. Not exactly a night at BMCFC’s house with candlelights and a Frankie Beverly tune. No one is getting their jollies from patting down some Republican senator’s wife’s FUPA. Does he get this upset when his wife gets a pap smear? He must want to punch her OB/GYN in the face every single time.

All this talk of shame and humiliation…. I’m starting to wonder if this is merely the lastest manifestation of America’s Puritanism.

So from now on, I propose a new Teabagger-friendly rule: All physical contact with another person will now be considered state-sponsored rape. It’s the only way to overcome our sinful desires.

See the big picture, sweat the small stuff: Gigapan and the art of ultra-high resolution photography

This guy's life is way, way cooler than yours.

A relatively new technology now allows consumers – that’s you and me, kids! – to take absurdly high-res panoramic photographs. That means you can take a panorama of a forest, and zoom in to see ants on a leaf. Or pictures of cities and zoom in on that guy who always masturbates on his couch by the window. Not that anybody would.
Continue reading

More gamez

Why is the sky blue?

The gases in the atmosphere scatter blue light most efficiently. Read more here.

Why is grass green?

Chorophyll absorbs blue, red light, reflects green; light —> energy. Read more here.


Star implodes. So much gravity nothing escapes; sucks together space-time. Read more here.

Also, fuck you.

String theory. Go.

Not even string theorists know what they’re talking about.

Submit a science question to me either in the comments, to my Gawker account, or to my email. I will answer it in ten words or less. If you ask me a question that neither I nor anybody else has the answer to, I will pretend I never received the question.

Come with us now on a journey through time and space

I don’t just surf the internet, I travel it. One second I’m looking up Jude Law’s IMDB profile and the next I find myself reserving a book at the library on religious asceticism in the Middle Ages.

My travels have a soundtrack that is just as hyperkinetic in its apparent lack of theme. I make lousy mix-tapes because of this.

This was my most recent collision of internet searching and music:

I can’t upload the video by any method, so go to the link at Buzzfeed and watch it. It’s worth it. I promise.

In Praise of Trolls

A nod to 92BuickLeSabre who wrote and earlier post on anonymity online.

Everybody hates trolls. They are the boogyman who terrorize children in the dark forest of the internet and who ruin the comments section of daily newspapers. Part of the creation of this blog was the desire to escape the trolls and jackasses who seem to be invading Gawker. However, I would argue that trolling, when done right, can be a force for good in the uglier places on the internet. Let’s face it, there are plenty of people who will say and advocate completely reprehensible things online. Trolling is a way of saying no to terrible ideas on forums and sites where bad people are encouraging awful ideas and it is a way to punish individuals and people who break online etiquette. Here’s a couple of examples. Continue reading

Mystic Brew

A classic joint that was famously sampled by a certain hip-hop group from Queens. I’m fairly sure it’s impossible to resist this song’s mood.

The Words I Never Write

It’s safe to say that I’m not the only person on this site who has their own personal blog.

In fairness, I’d probably be better off saying had, rather than has, as I haven’t written a post since 2008, and even then, I was only posting sporadically.  Of course, as we’ve learned, on the internet, everything is forever.  At my best, in 2005 and 2006, I was posting updates maybe 2-3 times a week.  And those posts, to be charitable, were centered around my hatred of dating, drunken adventures with friends, and the occasional opining on sports.

In short, it was a self indulgent enterprise that served to amuse my friends who knew half the stories because they were there, and the occasional passer-by who, bless their heart, had a less interesting life than me.

It was somewhere around the tail end of that experiment I realized:  I may fancy myself a decent, compelling writer, but, in reality, that isn’t really the case.  Considering that as a younger person, I felt like I had a chance to earn a living putting words to paper (or monitor, if you will), it was a hard lesson.  Realizing that to not be a realistic career path for me was hard, and not a little bit demoralizing.

That’s why I haven’t written a single thing for pleasure in over two years.  Not writing anything meant that I didn’t have to have anyone tell me that it wasn’t that good.  It’s not exactly a formula for becoming a more well-rounded individual, this much I know.  That said, failure and rejection are hard.  I don’t mean physically challenging, or mentally taxing.  Those things, I can handle.  I’ve always been a competent athlete, and I didn’t get to where I am professionally by being overtly dense.

It’s why, even with a very open invitation to come here and contribute, I struggle to find the voice with which to do it.   I’ve been a commenting peer of many people here for a year or more, and I know that you’re a very intelligent, discerning bunch.  I’ve seen the things you’ve had to say about bad writing, or bad writers.  Let’s just say this: For someone who doesn’t have a ton of confidence in his ability to construct sentences and paragraphs in a terribly compelling manor, there’s a sliver of intimidation there.

Even as I write this, I realize that it sounds at least a little bit like I’m hoping for pity, or at least, for the general commentariat to ‘take it easy’ on me.  That wouldn’t be realistic, or fun.  I am in my early 30s, and I want to force myself out of my comfort zone at least once in a while.

The reason I wanted to be a part of this is because I wanted to try and find some semblance of a voice again.  The chance to do it amongst a group of people I consider peers and friends is great. If I have to get my balls busted a few times because I’ve written a 47 word sentence, flipped verb tenses, or just said something terribly dumb, I’ll find the good in it.