I Wanna Go To The Booze Hospital

Given my degenerate lifestyle-a fairly obvious subconscious attempt to do myself harm by stealth-it is almost inevitable that I will wind up in a hospital at some point, probably soon. If anyone out there somehow manages to oversee it, do me a favor and make sure it's one of the types that serves booze. I'll be ever so grateful.


Do Not Give Wallabies Ecstasy

Say it with me, everyone: What a world. "Detectives questioned a circus owner today about allegations that a wallaby died after being plied with ecstasy and drink at a birthday disco. The marsupial was let loose among more than 150 revellers dancing at the Clarion Hotel in Liffey Valley, west Dublin, to the theme tune of Australian television show Skippy The Bush Kangaroo."


Very Recent History: How Benchley and Perelman Are Still Influencing Humor

A look at the styles of Robert Benchley and S.J. Perelman that echo today among the kids.


'Vogue' Latest to Get on This Tumblr Thing

Good golly, even Vogue has a Tumblr now. Maybe there'll be cat pictures from the office! We're still waiting to see if the latest media companies to jump on Tumblr will do anything beyond posting images of their covers and tables of contents. (Don't take that personally! I meant all of you, not anyone specific!)


Man Has Tooth In Ear

A man in Sheffield, England, has been delivered from a lifetime of crippling earaches after doctors found a tooth that had been lodged in his ear canal for 33 years.


Everyone Hates Obama

Paul Krugman thinks the Obama administration is doomed: "Stimulus, bank rescue, China, foreclosure; it applies all along. At each point there were arguments for not acting; but the cumulative effect has been drift, and a looming catastrophe in the midterms. Or to put it another way, the administration has never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity. And soon there won't be any more opportunities to miss."


Man Kicks Tomato In Head

And then there's this: "A former city mayor was ruing an expensive slip-up today after his failure to vault a giant human tomato cost his council £24,000. Jim Rodgers accidentally kicked Belfast City Council employee Lorraine Mallon in the head in a publicity stunt that went spectacularly wrong. Ms Mallon, who was dressed up as the huge fruit for a photo shoot to promote a gourmet food fair, suffered a slipped disc in the ill-fated leap." Please click through for the photo of "the rueful moment Jim Rodgers attempted to jump a vegetable-themed employee"


"What is Keeping People Away from Sedona’s Four Vortexes"?

"There is negative energy in the air here…." So begins the story about how sweat lodges are killing the New Age tourists in Sedona.


Tom Bosley, 1927-2010

Actor Tom Bosley, best known as Fonzie's landlord on "Happy Days," has died at the age of 83. What with the recent passing of June Cleaver are we about to see a wave of television's parental figures finally face cancellation? Somebody check in on Florence Henderson, see if she's okay.


"There is no making football safer."

Football will remain dangerous: "Here's the reality check to Peter King and all who want their violence safely commodified for Sunday: there is no making football safer. There is no amount of suspensions, fines, or ejections that will change the fundamental nature of a sport built on violent collisions. It doesn't matter if players have better mouth guards, better helmets, or better pads. Anytime you have a sport that turns the poor into millionaires and dangles violence as an incentive, well, you reap what you sow."


Feds Agree Islam Is A Religion

We now live in a world where the United States Department of Justice has to file a court brief asserting that "Islam is a religion and therefore entitled to freedom of expression."


The Ad Spending Comeback

Call it the Citizens United stimulus: "Zenith says an influx of political ad spending and increases in spending by car, financial service and retail companies are helping improve the U.S. ad market more quickly than many had anticipated. Political ad spending on local television is 61% higher than in 2008, Zenith says."


Why We Need Books

"Many books are screwy, a great many are dull, some are irredeemable, and there are way too many of them, probably, in the world. I hate all the fetishistic twaddle about books promoted by the chain stores and the book clubs, which make books seem as cozy and unthreatening as teacups, instead of the often disputatious and sometimes frightening things they are. I recognize that we now have many ways to convey, store, and reproduce the sorts of matter that formerly were monopolized by books. I like to think that I'm no bookworm, egghead, four-eyed paleface library rat. I often engage in activities that have no reference to the printed [...]


John Cage For Christmas Number One?

I never thought I'd see the day when the Daily Mail put together a factbox about John Cage, but it's a funny old world: "A Christmas a recording of four-and-a-half minutes of complete silence could grab the prestigious number one slot this December. So far more than 20,000 people have signed up on the social networking site to support the download 'Cage Against The Machine' which aims to put avant-garde composer John Cage's work 4'33" in the top spot."


"Are You Travelling With Any Porn Today?"

Travelers to Australia need to declare the porn they're bringing into the country to customs agents. The Prison Island government is actually asking you to declare illegal porn, but as you can imagine, there has been some confusion: "According to the Australian Sex Party spokesman Robbie Swan, one case involved a couple on their honeymoon, who thought they had to declare naked iPhone pictures of themselves after reading the incoming passenger card. They were made to display a nude photo of themselves in a line with all these other people; they were so embarrassed." Nobody tell Brett Favre!


Summer's Microfolk Hero Pleads Guilty

The legal saga of Steven Slater-the Jet Blue flight attendant who briefly raised the spirits of a weary nation when he departed his airplane via emergency slide-has come to an end, with Slater pleading to "a felony count of attempted criminal mischief and a misdemeanor count of criminal mischief." There will be no jail time. It is hard to believe that this only happened two months ago, and yet, in another way, it seems like it happened forever ago, because holy hell has the world gone crazy lately.


Men Are Still Like Cabs

The men are like cabs theory, reaffirmed: "He THINKS his light is on but it's really not!"


Soft Boys Reissues

The Soft Boys' Underwater Moonlight and A Can of Bees have been re-released on the Yep Roc label. While Moonlight-easily one of my top ten albums ever-got a reissue about a decade ago, this is the first time Bees has been available on CD in about twenty years. Strongly recommend.


C-SPAN Briefly Exciting

Please enjoy this bizarre story of lusty and vengeful young conservatives.


Writers Like Prizes

"In a perfect world, where the words you write are immediately found and lauded by those you write them for – the whole of humanity, no less – a prize would not be necessary. But since humanity is deaf, or just too busy to give a damn, and since there seems to be a disconnect between those who want to read a good novel and those who write them – as though the world of reading is one big lonely hearts club waiting for a matchmaker – there must be prizes to bring us together. In which case, yes, thank you, I would like to win one." -Booker Prize [...]