Posted on Sunday, January 22nd, 2023
I'm hungry, but not hungry enough to stop on bullets... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• It's a Hoot! I love this video. I've watched it way too many times (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...
Down da tunnel.♬ original sound - Matt Poole
• Kids! Legit dead (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...
@charro.azteca She meant the sandwiches 🙄 #marriagehumor #memes #humor #familyjokes #comedy ♬ original sound - Charro.Azteca
Things like this are why I can never give up TikTok.
• Shave and a Haircut! Or Instagram...
Cats make the world better.
• NOTHING! I can so relate (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...
I just want my breakfast 😭♬ original sound - BurkiDie
• Hair! How can you not love this? Samuel L. Jackson is having the time of his life... plus it's got Muppets in it!
Appearing on Sesame Street has got to be one of the biggest honors in existence.
• Hello Tomorrow! Wow. OH WOW!
This has incredible promise. Exactly the kind of retro-futurism that works for me... assuming it works as a show.
Time for dinner!
Posted on Monday, April 10th, 2023
To say I love CGP Grey videos is a gross understatement. That's like saying "Cheese is okay" and "I guess baby kittens might be a little cute." His videos are frickin' EPIC!
And today he unleashed one SO good and SO true that I cannot bring myself to save it for Sunday bullets.
No, you're getting it right freakin' now...
Couldn't possibly agree more with his assessments.
And the fact that he made it hysterically funny is just S-tier work. Keep it up, Grey.
Posted on Tuesday, April 25th, 2023
My favorite YouTuber is Marques Brownlee (MKHD). He has a way of talking about tech and reviewing products that is on an entirely different level from his peers. He isn't just out there regurgitating marketing spin, he's speaking from a place of knowledge and has an easy manner to deliver his thoughts that makes his videos a joy to watch.
So imagine my surprise when his latest video dropped... and it was him talking about the new shoes he designed...
This is the ultimate form of "Putting your money where your mouth is," and you love to see it.
If I had $189 burning a hole in my pocket, I would absolutely buy a pair. But that's more than double the cost of what I usually spend (at the Nike Outlet Store, natch) so I'll just have to admire them from afar.
In a bit of marketing genius, Atoms and Marques sent pairs to a bunch of YouTubers, and the videos of their unboxing are showing up everywhere. Including other favorites like Tyler Stahlman...
And Zack over at JerryRigEverything...
And even Linus got in on the action... in his signature style, of course...
Ugh. I want these more than is rational and certainly more than I can justify financially. Maybe this is one of those rare times that I throw fiscal responsibility to the wind and just spend money I don't have!
Posted on Sunday, June 11th, 2023
Recovering from being deathly sick has never been more fun... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Toast! Awww... my little Toast nightlight arrived!
It's a nightlight that I put in the dark corner of my kitchen next to my toaster. Get it?
• Buses? These captchas are getting frickin' stupid ridiculous...
So what? Now we're just supposed to be clicking on every fucking square on these idiotic things?
• Good Omens 2! This looks even better than the first one. The casting was note-perfect for these characters, and seeing more of them is something I am very much looking forward to...
It's weird how flawless the casting was for these.
• Schlage Rage! It went something like this...
ME: "I hate my Schlage Sense smart lock SO much. Flames... flames... on the side of my face... Which lock should I get to replace it? Preferably one with HomeKey."
HOMEKIT FORUM MEMBER: "Definitely the Schlage Encode Plus."
ME: "IS THIS SOME KIND OF JOKE?!? I hate hate HATE the Schlage I have now!"
HOMEKIT FORUM MEMBER: "I understand. I agree. But know that all the bad things on the Sense have been improved one thousand percent on the Encode Plus. And be sure to get the Plus if you want HomeKey."
OTHER HOMEKIT FORUM MEMBERS: "Hard agree!"
ME: "Just so you know, if I hate this lock I am coming back to haunt all of you."
• Hilarious! Zuckerberg on Apple Pro Vision: "Our vision for the metaverse and presence is fundamentally social. It’s about people interacting in new ways and feeling closer in new ways. Our device is also about being active and doing things. By contrast, every demo that they showed was a person sitting on a couch by themself. I mean, that could be the vision of the future of computing, but like, it’s not the one that I want." This is the stupidest fucking thing I've heard this week. How many times have a GROUP OF PEOPLE all put on their Facebook Quest VR goggles and sat around interacting in the same room? Nah, buddy. They're sitting alone on the couch! How is the Facebook headset more "social" when you're wandering around as a cartoon floating torso that's always gripping hand controllers? Apple at least went with uncanny valley avatars that attempt to look like you and leave your hands free...
Apple's take will cost HUGE MONEY... to start... but it will get cheaper over time. Facebook, who has lost millions (billions?) trying to do VR... and ultimately failing... shows Zuck's statement for what it is... fear. And bullshit. I'm not sure ANY of this is the "future I want." But I'd take Apple's vision over Facebook any day.
• Crossing the Street in Vietnam! Not a lie. Which would have been fine... except I had my mom with me, and most intersections are far busier than this one! I'll never forget the first time we went to cross a street. The intersection actually had a crosswalk signal (many don't). But it was totally ignored. We had the light but it made no difference at all... you're just expected to cross like this...
@travelwithpat Crossing the street in Vietnam is something you need to prepare to do #travel #vietnam #tiktoktravel ♬ Super Mario Bros Main Theme
But still... it's s country like no other and worth a visit. As is this guy's TikTok.
• Church & State? Okay, government funded Christian schools are a thing now... so are they going to also fund Muslim schools? Buddhist schools? Hindu schools? So much FOR FUCKING SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE!! This is a big slap in the face to all Americans, even if they consider themselves "Christian." Absolutely outrageous. Can't wait until the government is forced to sponsor Church of Satan schools because they're so fucking stupid that they don't have the fist clue about the can of worms they are opening. Jesus. OR NOT. THAT'S *YOUR* FUCKING CHOICE IN THIS COUNTRY!!!
And now I guess I had better make my bed, take a shower, and try and get some sleep .
Posted on Friday, June 16th, 2023
"I don't want my kid to be gay or trans!" is echoed over and over again as the underlying excuse for the renewed resurgence of LGBTQ+ hate that's infiltrating our laws and society. And I get it. I wouldn't want my kid to be "gay or trans" either. Not because I think there's anything wrong with it... you are who you are... but because this unrelenting toxic bigotry is incredibly dangerous for LGBTQ+ youth.
Seeing LGBTQ+ representation and diversity doesn't encourage kids to "become gay" or "become trans" any more than seeing somebody who's left-handed encourages them to "become left-handed."
All it does is let them know that it's okay for them to BE gay or trans, if that's who they are, and that they are not alone in the world. That they are accepted.
But entirely too many parents would rather their kids grow up to be miserable adults by denying who they are... assuming they don't unalive themselves first... than to embrace who they are and live their truth. This was made overtly clear to me when I saw the backlash after Pride-inclusive gamer icons were released for the Disney Speedstorm racing game...
The very first response I saw on social media was along the lines of "I don't have anything against the gays but I am sick and tired of Disney cramming this LGBT stuff down my kid's throat." As if seeing a rainbow Speedstorm logo is somehow an assault on kids?
And it's like... hey, if you're kid is straight and doesn't want to acknowledge Pride, then they can ignore the new icon options and pick something else. But if they are a part of the LGBTQ+ community? Then thank God for Disney and Gameloft, because your kid obviously isn't going to get any support from you. They may be too afraid of you to select a Pride icon for themselves, but at least they get to login and play the game where a bunch of other people are sporting the icons and showing their support for who they are.
It's little things that like that can be the difference between life and death for some people. Literally.
Pride is important because some kid somewhere is being raised to believe that they're better off dead than gay.
So good on you, Disney. Keep cramming that "gay agenda" down our throats.
Posted on Thursday, June 22nd, 2023
You're probably best off skipping this entry.
I know that USA Today panders to the lowest common denominator (i.e. people as a whole are stupid as fuck), but this headline! Isn't it a foregone conclusion that if debris was found there could be no survivors? Like what... the passengers would just be hanging out 2-1/2 miles down on the sea floor waiting for a ride back to the surface?
But anyway... I have a few thoughts on this tragic situation, if you care to hear them.
As an aside... the irony of people dying because warnings were ignored while going to see the wreck of where people died because warnings were ignored, is not lost on me.
Posted on Friday, June 30th, 2023
I am really torn on this whole "link tax" bullshit that's getting signed into law by certain countries.
Essentially this boils down to governments forcing major media companies like Google to strike agreements with news organizations. That way, when you search for something on Google (or Facebook or any company that monetizes results based on another company's content) and a result from a news organization pops up, Google has to pay them money because their content has been monetized by Google.
On one hand, it's like... okay... Google is making money by serving ads in their search results or news feeds, so why shouldn't the news organizations showing up in those results get paid for making Google rich with their hard work?
On the other hand... why the fuck should Google be held responsible for other companies not monitizing their own content? If you don't want Google to make money off of you, then no problem. Add code to your website's HTML instructing Google bots to not crawl your content. Problem solved. Why in the hell are governments getting involved in this? And if you're going to pass laws for news organizations to get paid for making Google money... why not everybody? Why not bloggers? Blogography is heavily indexed by Google, and I have a lot of content that gets looked at by Google search referrals. So where is my money??
I have to say... I am kinda on Google's side this time.
Which is something I haven't said very often.
Google is merely refering people to your content. It should be up to you to monetize everything once somebody clicks through to visit your site and read your stories. Run ads. Offer subscriptions. Whatever. Just be grateful that Google is sending you the business. How else will people even find you if you're not getting Google search referrals?
With the recently-passed "link tax" law in Canada, Google is telling the Canadian government to fuck off. They will just remove all Canadian news sources from appearing to Canadians who are now legally required to be paid. Sure Google will have less content in their search results to monetize... but they won't have to pay anything out either. I'd argue that this doesn't benefit Canadians at all, but what do I know? Google said the same thing to Australia and France, but eventually capitulated. It will probably be the same for Canada.
And the USA is likely going to be adding a "link tax" soon.
If I were Google, I'd do some things...
Ultimately I think it's important that news organizations get paid for their work. But to put that responsibility on Google is outrageous. That should be up to Google. And if people don't like it... then everybody can tell Google bots to not crawl their site until Google agrees to fork over the money and share their success. That's how the market works. If governments wants money to go to news organizations, then have that money come from the government.
Regardless of how this all shakes out, to have governments jumping in the fray is a terrible precedent. Today it's Google... what's tomorrow? Me? Every time I share a news story I'm going to be responsible for paying them money? I call bullshit. They should figure out their own monetization just like I do (which is $0 since I don't charge for anything, but still).
Have a government-mandated monetized weekend, everybody!
Posted on Thursday, July 6th, 2023
I've been on a number of boats over the years. Everything from canoes and rowboats to sailboats and cruise ships. I'm comfortable on the water and always have been. I'm especially comfortable on sailboats, possibly because I have fairly good balance and it's easily for me to walk around on them even when the water's choppy.
That being said...
I don't go looking for choppy water to sail on.
Well, mostly I don't.
I did sail over the most treacherous waters on earth in order to go on an expedition to Antarctica. But I was told to stay in bed the entire time, so this is all I saw of it...
The ship didn't roll completely on its side... but it was surely over 45°. It was brutal. There were times I couldn't see sky out the porthole.
But this whole "rough seas" setup is just a metaphor.
The point is that nobody seeks out choppy water unless it's required to get to your destination... and even then you do the best you can to find the calmest path possible.
Which brings us to the latest from Facebook, their Twitter competitor called Threads.
Because I have an Instagram account, I automatically had a Threads account, so I was on it pretty quick to see what's what. Basically, it's a carbon copy of Twitter, which is why I likely won't be using it much. Facebook allows me to hand-select an audience, and that's what I want for my social media. For everything else I have this blog. Threads is not that friendly yet... you can't look at only the people you follow and there's no way to lock anything down... but at least it hasn't degenerated into a toxic cesspool like Twitter.
So while I'm happy to check in on my Threads from time to time just to make sure I'm not missing anything, I won't be jumping into Zuckerberg's choppy waters any time soon.
That's a lesson I learned when a fellow passenger on my Antarctica expedition had to be air-lifted to Peru because he was thrown down a stairwell and ended up with multiple compound fractures.
Posted on Wednesday, July 19th, 2023
Years ago I was talking with a friend about travel and the places we've been. Inevitably we got to the point where we were discussing the places we've been that we didn't care for. I said that there's nowhere I've been that I wasn't able to enjoy at least some of it. Then tried to give an example by mentioning Korea. Love their culture. Love their music. Really love their television. But I found being a vegetarian there is so difficult there that I didn't feel I could ever fall in love with the country. Indeed there were times I would fly there on one day. Work the second day. Then fly back the third day.
Unless I went to an "American" restaurant or chain, I'd always end up eating kimchi or some kind of vegetarian bibimbap with a red bean paste dumpling for dessert. And, as good as it is, I get tired of it for every meal. Koreans love love love meat...
I did remember having a 16 course vegetarian meal that was nice... but it was essentially the same food in different forms.
But anyway... I ended up Googling "Vegetarian in Korea" to see if I was missing something other than pickled vegetables and garlic. It was then I ran across a YouTube channel called "Korean Englishman" and this video...
The channel was excellent and I checked in from time to time. They do a lot of cool things there, like exposing famous people to Korean food.
At some point the same guys (JOsh and OLLIE) created a new channel called Jolly. I never really looked into it.
But recently rediscovered it. Because of this video...
And now I'm addicted to Jolly. What a fantastic channel. The boys visit the US from time to time, and those videos are gold...
Nothing like seeing your country from the viewpoint of foreigners! And yet they're always so positive, which is nice.
So if you're looking for a Youtube rabbit hole to fall down, here you go.
Posted on Friday, July 21st, 2023
Honest to God I don't understand Facebook. They make billions of dollars off of their users, but actively hates them for using their platform. At least I'm assuming they do because I just got banned again.
And I'm not alone. I've recently seen a number of people saying that their Facebook account got banned. And almost all of them are saying that it's for bullshit reasons that they can't appeal to get their account reinstated. And sometimes they get their entire account deleted because some Artificial Intelligence Bot flags them for violating guidelines that they never violated.
I've been thrown in Facebook Jail multiple times for bullshit reasons. My favorite being "Displaying Graphic Nudity or Sexual Activity" which I was 1000% not doing. A guy had his shirt off in a photo and apparently that was enough of a trigger, despite the fact that he was wearing pants! I appealed... was told it had been looked at... but the ban was not overturned. Which leads me to believe that real people never look at these things because it was painfully fucking obvious that there was no "Displaying Graphic Nudity or Sexual Content" in my post. On top of that... THE FUCKING POST WAS FOR FRIENDS ONLY! LIKE 99% OF MY POSTS ARE!! I'd post a screen capture, but Facebook only lets you access a few of your most recent bans.
I've also been thrown in Facebook Jail for defending gay-parented families. The original post which had a photo attacking LGBTQ persons because "they can't have families" didn't get taken down, but calling out their bigotry by pointing out that gay couples can adopt a bunch of kids or have artificial insemination (or whatever) if they want to have kids... BANNED! Because that's "Nudity or Sexual Activity." Yes, adoption... which by definition is getting a kid without sexual activity is defined as sexual activity. And, again, an appeal did nothing.
And here's the original post, which never got taken down (that I know of)...
I was also thrown in Facebook Jail for honoring Thích Quảng Đức... a Buddhist monk who set himself on fire to protest the Vietnam War (which I wrote about here). And it's like... okay. I posted a photo that Facebook considers "graphic violence" (WHICH WAS THE ENTIRE FUCKING POINT!) and they are a private company so they are within their right to take it down. But, on the other hand, fuck them for throwing me in Facebook Jail on top of removing it because there was context for the photo that should have been taken into account. I did not deserve to be thrown in jail for reminding people of our tragic history and honoring a man for demonstrating for peace. And yet I was... on two separate occasions... for the same fucking post. Two, two, two strikes for one!
And then I got thrown in jail again this morning.
For posting about buying allergy medication.
To my friends.
And of course I appealed it because there is fucking nothing about "guns, animals, and other regulated goods." But this is what I get every time I've tried throughout the day...
And, for the record, here is my full post... WHICH WAS RESTRICTED TO FRIENDS ONLY!...
During allergy season, I take one-and-a-half Benadryl so I don’t drown in my sleep. I buy a large bottle at Walgreens that lasts me over a year. Today I went to buy more. Walgreen no longer offers large bottles of the tablets, only the capsules. WHICH YOU CAN’T CUT IN HALF!! So to save money I bought a bottle of 600 capsules and three boxes of 100 tablets. This giving me 600 doses total. — EXCEPT, guess what, Walgreens will only sell me two bottles total because it can be used for self-harm, I guess. But this is where it gets so fucking stupid. I can buy two bottles of 600 capsules for 1200 total pills. But can’t buy four bottles total for 1000 pills. This is the stupidest fucking shit I’ve ever heard of. All I’m asking for is some common fucking sense. But no. AND THEN… Walgreens wants you to buy more, so they have a buy one, get one 50% off… which means to get the discount I have to buy two boxes of 100 and skip the 600 entirely?? My God. The insanity is fucking insane.
And then this nonsense gets particularly unhinged. Because a local friend in the comments told me that she gets her solid-pill, off-brand Benadryl from Costco in a 600-count bottle. She even volunteered to grab me a bottle the next time she's shopping there! And it's like, yes! Thank you! Things like this are the entire reason I am on Facebook in the first place!
It's things like this (and whatever the fuck is happening over on Twitter) that makes me even more sad that social media has replaced blogging as a way of interacting with friends and family. You will always... always... be under the thumb of others when you're interacting with people. Sure these companies are just trying to remove harmful content, which is fine. Bravo. But it's not working. Content which is actually endangering lives, persecuting and threatening people, and promoting stalking and harassment is still there.
As for me?
I could lose my entire Facebook account because of graphic nudity I didn't post. Sexual activity I didn't post. And "guns, animals, and other regulated goods" I didn't post (BENADRYL IS OVER-THE COUNTER YOU FUCKING DUMBASSES!).
So I guess it's pictures of my cats and what I had for dinner from here on out.
EXCEPT, OH NO...
Though I suppose I could always just post more innocent images... like when Tony Bennett's death was announced. EXCEPT ON NO...
Oh well. I'll always have blogging.
Posted on Sunday, July 23rd, 2023
It's another scorcher out there today, but never you fear about my melting... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Strange Decks! There is now no question what-so-ever that Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is my favorite Trek. It has eclipsed The Original Series, as I knew it would. And this latest episode (dropping early in honor of ComicCon!)... which is a mind-blowing crossover with the comedic ANIMATED show, Star Trek: Lower Decks... is beyond genius. They brought voice actors Tawny Newsome and Jack Quaid into Real Life and the transition is seamless. They are very much the same characters, just no longer animated...
Now, they could have easily did this as a throw-away episode. Or dismissed it as a dream. Or any number of things which would have kneecapped it into irrelevance. But it was well-thought-out and completely serious while honoring the tone and characters of their respective shows. It's borderline thrilling how Strange New Worlds keeps one-upping themselves episode after episode. AND THAT ENDING! Brilliant Trek. Brilliant television.
• American Heartland! In a shocking announcement, a new $2 BILLION theme park is being built in Tulsa. Called "American Heartland" this seems like a carbon copy of "Disney's America," a theme park outside of Washington, D.C. that was never built which is based around Americana...
Now, I think this is a cool idea. Definitely. But Oklahoma?!? And not Southern Oklahoma which is close to Texas and might have a longer operating season... Northeast Oklahoma, which likely has fairly mild winters, but not California/Florida mild. And it seems primed for failure given that the biggest city (Oklahoma City, 2-1/2 hours away) has under 700,000 people. The nearest actual major city is Dallas or St. Louis, but they're a five hour drive. Which begs the question... why not just put it near Dallas or St. Louis? They at least have a big population and a major airport there! But still... they are promoting a laundry list of experienced Disney/Universal attraction designers, so there's that. I'd like to see it, of course. But it seems as though this is going to go the way of "Disney's America" and won't be built.
• Seek Discomfort! one of my long-time favorite YouTube channels is Yes Theory which is a group of people doing extraordinary things via travel and adventure by stepping out of their comfort zone. It's a channel I binge for a while, then leave for a while, because while it's beautiful to behold... it's also emotionally overwhelming. We're so inundated with reasons to feel cynical that watching the opposite of that for too long can be tough. And a couple of their latest videos are pretty darn special...
If you're a longtime fan of the channel, that surprise guest in France was almost too much to take.
How amazing is that?
• 'MURICA AI! This Buzzfeed article is nuts: I Asked AI What Europeans Think Americans From Every Single State Look Like, And The Results Are Just Plain Mean. Mean? Maybe. But some of them are scary accurate. Go ahead and click through. I dare you.
• Rescued! Miracles happen. What an incredible story...
Is it wrong that the entire time watching the video I'm screaming "BUT HOW IS THE DOG DOING?!?
• Ketchup> Hallmark Channel's "June Weddings" event is over... but I went back to watch the first half hour of The Wedding Contract because I wasn't paying much attention until the end when I watched it last month. What's REALLY NICE is that Hallmark is putting a little diversity over the same old story... they had an Indian wedding, and this is a Jewish wedding (seriously... she's baking a challah for Shabbat dinner!). But the best part is how it takes place in Chicago... but not really. It's shot in Vancouver. BUT IT'S TOTALLY CHICAGO BECAUSE SHE'S SITTING ON A PARK BENCH WITH A SLICE OF DEEP DISH PIZZA NEXT TO HER! BWAH HA HA HAAA! But wait, there's more! They get a coffee at cart called Chicago's Finest Hot Dogs and... what's that on the cart there?
THERE'S A BOTTLE OF KETCHUP ON THE CART! BWAH HA HA HA HAAAAAAA! HA HA HAAAAAA!!! Clearly the set decorator has never been to Chicago. That ketchup would be hidden and provided (RELUCTANTLY) by request only. Ketchup on a hot dog in Chicago... BWAH HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA =gasp= HA HAAAA!!! People have died for less!
• POD PEOPLE! I really, really want to see this...
Looks interesting. Looks different. Has great lead actors. Why not?
Hope you're having a cooler Sunday than I am!
Posted on Tuesday, August 15th, 2023
I haven't given a shit what people think of me for a long time now.
It's this irrefutable truth which allows me to keep blogging on the internet.
I left a discussion group last week because an asshole wouldn't stop going after people for things like spelling and grammar, even though the meaning was perfectly clear. I finally said something... essentially saying that gatekeeping the English language isn't the purpose of the discussion... then I left. This morning somebody still in the group copied some of the responses to my comment and sent them to me before she left too. The guy I replied to replied to me with something stupid, then other people jumped in and agreed with him. Proving that I made the right decision to go.
Liz Climo put this drama into vivid relief for me...
Those poor, poor people.
Posted on Sunday, October 1st, 2023
Don't mind the mess... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Forty-Nine! Even if you don't care about baseball, this short video will tell you why Tim Wakefield's passing is such a blow to Red Sox Nation. He was an absolute inspiration, on and off the field, and I loved watching the guy play...
And this video goes into a little more depth on his remarkable career and that incredible knuckleball...
Rest in peace, sir.
• Swiftly! The ongoing saga of the (possible!) romance between Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce is something to behold. First he tells the world that he was bummed she didn't want to talk to him after her show that he went to because she's saving her voice. Apparently he had a friendship bracelet he wanted to give her with his number on it (friendship bracelets are a very Taylor Swift thing now, apparently). This was discussed on the podcast he has with his brother Jason. Which I've queued up here:
Adorable. But, I mean, it's Taylor Swift. There's no man on earth who woldn't want to take a shot. AND THEN... Taylor Swift broke the internet when she showed up at a Chiefs/Bears game... sitting in the Kelce box with Travis's mom!
Suddenly Kelce jersey's were sold out everywhere as Taylor Swift fans snapped them up at a record pace. But this could have just been a publicity stunt. At least until she showed up at the Jets/Chiefs game (with Sophie Turner, Blake Lively, AND RYAN REYNOLDS...
So now? Well... let's just say that this tweet pretty much sums it up...
"British Colonialism" being a not-so-thinly-veiled reference to Taylor's previous brief relationship with The 1975's lead singer Matty Healy.
• If Karma Was My Boyfriend... The entirety of that last bullet was to set up my sharing Young Jeffrey's latest song parody (of Swift's Karma, here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...
@brookeandjeffrey The entire internet is talking about Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce. But is anybody SINGING about it yet? Instead of Taylor Swift's "Karma" it's Young Jeffrey's "Travis Is My Guy Friend." #TaylorSwift #Taylorsversion #TravisKelce #EraTours #traviskelce #parody #brookeandjeffrey ♬ Karma (feat. Ice Spice) - Taylor Swift
I don't know how Young Jeffrey pulls this off week after week. But it keeps me tuning in to KQMV Seattle, so whatever keeps him going, it's definitely getting listeners.
• Karma! If you're unfamiliar with the original song being parodied, this one's for you...
The video is a whole other bit of drama because it features the Ice Spice remix instead of the album version. Many speculate this was damage control for an insult that Matty Healy made towards Ice Spice (he being the previous Swift beau, aren't you keeping up?).
• Twilight! Meanwhile... back to the Kelce Brothers... I listen to their podcast every once in a while, and this is the madness that was the last one I heard...
When I looked this up to see if it was on YouTube, I wasn't aware that there was a video of Travis reacting. His pain is palpable. This is how I look when somebody talks to me about Harry Potter.
• Underwater! Map Men has another fascinating video out. This time talking about the internet...
I admit that the line from Texas to Louisiana got me. It doesn't seem like the best route for that would be underwater.
• NEWSFLASH! Conspiracy theories about FEMA’s Oct. 4 emergency alert test spread online. Uh huh. I just knew I wouldn't be able to get the latest COVID vaccination in peace. There's always people telling me I'm "going to die." Every. Fucking. Time. And this time it's from a FEMA Alert tone. The same damn test tone that they've been using since the 60's... but now is when they will be activating secret nanobots that have been introduced into vaccines? Jesus. It's a wonder that these conspiracy nut jobs have the brain power to breathe and tie their shoelaces. I mean, come on, I'm on COVID vaccination No. 6 AND STILL HAVEN'T DIED YET. But any day now, I'm sure.
And there's your bullets, my fellow Swifties.
Posted on Thursday, October 12th, 2023
I can't really comment on "The Fall of Twitter" because I've rarely ever used that platform. On the contrary, I've actively avoided it when at all possible. Finding a way to condense my thoughts into 280 characters or less was a hassle that was rarely rewarded with any meaningful dialogue (but I did get plenty of public hate, whether from my content or the misunderstanding of truncated content). Eventually Twitter allowed you to become "verified" by paying for it, and those users were allowed to blow past 280 characters to 1,000 or 2,500 or some more respectable number. I never wanted to pay for the privilege, so I took a hard pass. Again. Regardless of my personal experience (or lack thereof) using Twitter, I've been reading an increasing number of articles which have proclaimed it dead. Or, in the case of The New Yorker, "no longer fun."
What I can comment on is the disastrous rebranding of one of the most valuable brands in the known universe. Elon Musk renamed "Twitter" to "X" which was a bizarre strategy that could only be dreamed up by a billionaire who doesn't give a shit about the irreplaceable power of brand recognition. "Tweets" have been embedded into world culture (and the world's lexicons) in a way that companies fantasize about. But Musk has an obsession over the name "X" for some reason, so now instead of tweets we have xeets or what-the-fuck-ever. Musk does a lot of crazy shit (but likely no more crazy than the things I would do if I were a billionaire) but this one takes the absolute cake. The guy paid FORTY-FOUR BILLION DOLLARS for something he proceeded to utterly decimate.
And don't think that I am just making an observation over something I refuse to investigate. I read numerous stories and watched interviews where Elon Musk attempted to explain it all. And it goes something like this...
“The Twitter name made sense when it was just 140 character messages going back and forth – like birds tweeting – but now you can post almost anything, including several hours of video. In the months to come, we will add comprehensive communications and the ability to conduct your entire financial world. The Twitter name does not make sense in that context, so we must bid adieu to the bird.”
On the surface, this is not at all illogical. Chinese society runs on an app called WeChat (微信).
If you are unaware of the sheer insanity of just how critical WeChat has become to the Chinese people, I've got a mindblowing video for you. It's quite a long video because they address a number of controversies surrounding the app, but it's a fascinating watch...
Now, if you didn't watch the above video (and who could blame you), this is a frame from it that's the critical bit...
WeChat combines the shopping of Amazon, the videos of YouTube, the dating of Tinder, the music of Spotify, the search of Google, the financial transactions of PayPal, the social media of Facebook, the telephone connectivity of WhatsApp, the movie studio of Netflix, the ride-sharing of Über, the reviews of Yelp, the videoconferencing of Zoom, and the food delivery of Deliveroo (the American equivalent being InstaCart and ÜberEats)... all in one app!
And this is what Elon Musk is wanting for his "X" platform (a concept he tried once before but never got off the ground). It is, apparently, the main reason behind him wanting to buy Twitter in the first place (along with his ego, I'm sure).
Now, I have serious doubts that a WeChat-type service conglomerate could ever emerge in the USA. We have anti-monopoly laws, sure, but they get ignored or enforced seemingly at random, so that's not my reasoning. My thinking is that there is no unifying government mandate which encourages this to happen. Of course there are politicians who want to keep us from having access to things they don't like (or, more accurately, things that they are fucking PAID to not like, such as TikTok), but apparently nobody has paid them to work on app consolidation yet. Somebody should just tell Musk that he needs to start buying off politicians to make it happen! Heaven only knows that there are enough of them up for sale, so it's really only a matter of money. Of which Musk has plenty.
I am watching the fall of Twitter, er, "X"... with disinterest. Why would I care that a platform is either "dying" or "no fun" when I don't use it?
Okay... I'm watching with a little bit of interest since Twitter is part of the reason that blogging died (ah, those were the days!).
Ultimately to me this is just like the death of FAX machines and pagers. It seems to actually be happening, but we won't know for sure until it's really gone. I take no joy in it, especially because of those who rely on it, but don't expect me to care. And if Twitter weathers the storm and roars back as the "X Everything App" that Musk always dreamed of? Well... I wouldn't want all the apps I use to be consolidated under Elon Musk any more than I would a government... so I wouldn't be thrilled about it (that's why my primary "social media platform" is Blogography!), but I guess I'd have little choice but to install it.
It's either that or retreat to a cave and commune with nature.
Something that is getting more appealing by the day.
Posted on Sunday, October 22nd, 2023
The world has gone mad again, but it's still not worse than reading this blog... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...
• Dr. Nick! The world is so small. I'm watching a fascinating series from NatGeo on Disney+ called Superstructures: Engineering Marvels. One of the episodes is about a massive semi-submersible cargo ship. And one of the experts speaking is Nick Bradbeer, who is billed as a naval architect...
My brain immediately does a flip-flop because the name sounds so familiar. Bradbeer? Where have I heard that name? So I search my computer and come across a slideshow from a talk I downloaded called Spaceship Design Considerations for Writers written by Dr. Nick Bradbeer. And then I remember... I tried to contact him years ago to see if he knew of a video recording of his talk because I'd very much like to see it. Same guy. Yes, he's a naval engineer teaching at University College London... but he's also a massive gaming geek who applies his career speciality to designing games. And when I Google him, I find him on Mastodon where he's engaging his naval engineering students to play games he wrote! What an amazingly cool guy! Still wish I could find a video of his talk on spaceship design, because I'd very much like to see that. If anybody knows anything that could help me track that down I'd appreciate it.
• Spherical! A lot of footage is being released of the concert experience at "The Sphere" Las Vegas (featuring the U2 residency). It looks insane. And absolutely everybody I've heard talk about it says the same thing... "It's incredible." What's really amazing is that video from a cameraphone cannot possibly capture what you see and hear, but it still looks absolutely amazing. This is a pretty good look right here...
The structure is mind-boggling...
Image from MEGA/The Daily Mail - Capacity actually 20,000 including standing room
It sounded intriguing enough that I actually considered going to see it. I'm not a big U2 fan, but it seems like the spectacle of it all might be worth it. Until I found out what it actually is. This is not U2 playing all their greatest hits. It's U2 playing the entirety of their album Actung, Baby... plus some other songs (namely off Rattle and Hum). And as if that weren't enough of a buzzkill, apparently the massive video screen isn't actually used to fullest effect on all the songs. So it's like... what's the point? Not a ton of acts could fill 20,000 seats night after night (though Taylor Swift could do that easily for a year or more). But how many acts could do that without playing all their hits? As a one-off, no problem. But as a residency in a single city? Taylor, Pink, Madonna, The Stones, Elton John, Coldplay, Celine Dion... maybe? And given how expensive the visuals must cost to produce, you really need a residency to have it pay off. Odds are that the best shows for this would be multi-act shows... or reunions of major names. One Direction, The Spice Girls, etc. So I dunno. I'd still like to experience The Sphere, I just don't know for who.
• QUAID! Every once in a while I run across something from years ago that I never even knew existed. This time it's a Funny or Die clip featuring ennis Quaid from eight years ago that is ridiculously funny...
I love it when celebrities are such good sports and willing to particpate in things like this. And now I need to re-watch Undercover Blues for the hundredth time. A movie so good that I remain despondent that it wasn't a massively huge hit so we could have gotten a sequel.
• Ho Ho Ho! Hallmark Channel's annual "Countdown to Christmas" started on Friday... and it started with one of the best Christmas movies I've seen in a minute: Checkin' It Twice...
The story is great... but the actors take it to the next level. Charming and funny. Could it be that my favorite Hallmark Christmas movie of 2023 is the first Hallmark Christmas movie of 2023? Maybe.
• Left Bloody and Broken! How big of an idiot do you have to be to pick a fight with Disney, a company famous for employing countless bloodthirsty, vicious, soulless lawyers? Can you believe that dumbass Ron DeSantis was actually a contender for the presidency before everybody woke up to what a fucking disaster he is? All he did with his war against Disney was galvanize people against his worthless, bigoted, meatball ass... all in the name of being “anti-woke”... and the hilarious story of how it happened is right here, courtesy of the Legal Eagle...
Now if only people would wake up to the total tidalwave of idiots either in office or running for office and send them packing, that would be great.
• Way To Go! So awesome! People aren't considered freaks anymore based on their weight, their body hair, or their tattoos! I never thought we'd get here as a society, but this bigoted fucking cartoon says it's true, so it must be true!
Congratulations everybody on embracing humanity instead of persecution!
Ugh. If only.
• Drought? Oh joy. This precipitation forecast for Winter 2023/2024 might lead to less snow in the mountains where I live this Winter, which means the possibility of another drought Summer 2024 (at least on my side of the mountains)...
But as bad as this might be for us, it's looking disastrous for poor Hawaii. Can't catch a break.
And now to return you to the madness of life on earth. At least until next week.
Posted on Thursday, October 26th, 2023
Oh boy.Every October for years I've changed my Facebook profile picture to my goth look for Halloween. It's kinda a tradition and nobody is hurt by me looking awesome for a month. OR SO I THOUGHT! But more on that in a minute.
Here is the photo...
Long time Blogography readers might recognize this as a still from a video I made fifteen years ago for a video edition of "Bullet Sunday"...
I've started increasingly commenting on posts that are racist, bigoted, antisemitic, hateful, or stupid. The reaction is mostly what you'd expect. And I'm used to the hate... this is not my first time on the internet. But now the comments are all about my profile pic, not my comment. I have been called absolutely every name you can imagine. Because I'm wearing black makeup. For Halloween.
This is weird to me because I don't think much about my appearance (which should be obvious to anybody who meets me). The idea of having perfectly matching clothes or dressing in the latest style or looking "cool" or whatever just doesn't interest me. Except when it comes to Halloween, apparently.
I'm fascinated how people don't bother to make an actual argument about what I've said now. They don't like what I'm saying and how I look in my profile pic, but it's how I look that's what they choose to comment on. Which just reinforces the fact that ignorant assholes are ultimately bullies above everything else. Hating people for how they look or how they choose to dress is their priority.
I am trying to be unshocked, but this is not remotely surprising. It's the easiest shot to take, because forming an argument in support of your opinion is hard. And the easy shot is all they know.
Not that I really care. Goth Dave is the hottest Dave.
Posted on Monday, November 6th, 2023
I think I've written a few times about my love for the Yes Theory YouTube channel.
I can't remember where I first heard of it. In all likelihood somebody via the internet... probably even a total stranger... who contacted me through this blog. They see that I loved traveling the world and meeting new people and discovering new things and said something like "You should really check out Yes Theory on YouTube". And so I did. This was many years ago, and I've watched everything they've ever released.
And the members of Yes Theory have meant the world to me. Because they don't just want you to watch, they invite you into their lives and you get to experience everything with them. It hasn't always been an easy road, and there have been many changes over the years.
Which is why this reunion video is so incredibly special to me...
The way Yes Theory looks at the world is how I want the world to be.
I cannot wait to see what happens next.
And if you're looking for a massive dose of positivity in your life, I highly recommend checking out their channel. But be forewarned... if you are remotely human, those videos are addictive. You cannot watch just one.
Posted on Tuesday, November 7th, 2023
I really don't want to be on the internet today.
I got a pretty good night's sleep. Woke up to answer my emails then feed my cats. Then climbed on social media until I had a video chat scheduled. Almost immediately I saw racist comments on a video that was not in English complaining about how the content creator should be "speaking English if she wants an audience"... and I was done.
The woman in the video actually speaks English very well. But she is more comfortable in her native language, so 3/4 of her videos are in Spanish. And it's not like YouTube doesn't have the ability to automatically display translated subtitles into whatever language you want, so what does it even matter? I guess reading subtitles is just too much for people.
Especially those who think that everybody everywhere should be speaking English all the time.
Which reminded me of when I was on one of the first cruises with my mom. One of the waiters at our table had a nametage saying he was from the Phillipines. I had a very, very rudimentary grasp of some phrases in Tagalog and, as he was clearing my dinner plate, I said "Maraming salamat," or "Thank you very much."
The waiter froze.
My first thought was that I mangled it so badly that I had accidentally said something deeply offensive. So I immediately apologized and said I didn't know much Tagalog.
That's when he told me "You said it very well. I am just not used to hearing Filipino* above deck." At which point he told me that employees are only allowed to speak English in front of passengers because otherwise they get complaints that the workers are "talking about them" and "being rude."
And, it's like... I get it. Despite the fact that the USA doesn't have a "national language" there are numerous examples of foreign language speakers being told "Speak American... you're in American now!" **
But no, actually I don't really get it at all. ***
Americans travel abroad expecting everybody to speak English and not bothering to learn even a few niceties in the language of the country they're visiting, but of course that's perfectly okay. — But anyway... if the workers aren't talking to you, why the fuck shouldn't they be able to talk to each other in whatever language is comfortable to them?
Because Americans might conjure up some imagined slight?
Yeah, that's 1000% on-brand for us.
Something which was reaffirmed on a video I watched this morning.
*Tagalog being the root language of standardized Filipino.
**Yes, I just quoted a line from the Bette Midler & Lily Tomlin comedy Big Business.
***One of my dream scnearios has always been somebody telling me to "Speak American" when I'm speaking some other language so I can say "Fuck off, asshole! Is that American enough for you?
Posted on Friday, December 15th, 2023
One of my long-time passions is architecture. And I don't mean just the massive feats like Westminster Abbey and The Colosseum... I love it in all its forms. Even if it's just a well-designed closet.
And every once in a while I see a feat of architectural design that blows my mind, and I obsess over it way too much. Like this "Ultimate Bachelor Pad"...
Credited to Pearsall Construction in Michigan, it's already cool on the outside, taking an (assumably) old brick building and adding a modern accent overlay on it, but where it really shines is the interior. I have combed the intenet trying to find photos or blueprints or something, but the only thing I can find is the original TikTok (here's a link in case TikTok is being a dick)...
@wayupmedia Living the bachelor life in style 😏 Builder: @pearsallconstruction #bachelor #luxurylifestyle #interiordesign #michigan #realestate ♬ original sound - lyrxcshub
Now... let's take a minute to try and figure out what's happening here. There are a couple jump-cuts in that video which obscure two very important details. First of all, they jump past the dining room, which you can see through the windows in the image above, and get a tiny glimpse of on the right when the video runs through the kitchen...
It's highly frustrating how they jump-cut past it in the video, but that's small potatoes compared to the jump-cut to that awesome bathroom.
At first I didn't even understand where the bathroom was supposed to be. Did they jump back before the laundry closet to that mystery door? But then I took another look at the exterior photo above and saw that the quick glimpse of blue sky in a window in the bathroom looks to match the windows between the bedroom and the dining area. Which means that the bathroom is through the bedroom, behind the kitchen, as implied by the video...
And so... what actually is behind that mystery door between the laundry closet and the kitchen? Likely it's storage. A combination pantry and broom closet perhaps.
But where's the bedroom closet? Where do you put your clothes? I can only guess that there's a chest-of-drawers and a hanging closet between that jump-cut from the bed to the bathroom. But what does that closet look like? Is it open on both sides as you move towards the bathroom? Are there doors so your visitors don't see your wardrobe? A desk maybe? Who knows?
And then there's the home's entry room. Comparatively speaking, it's a rather large room! And I have no idea what's on the right side there. Is that a stairwell down to the ground floor? If it is, then what's outside the door there?
I'm not clear on fire codes in Michigan, but it seems strange that there's no escape route out of the living/dining area. If the entryway room is engulfed in flames, and the fire spreads to your bedroom (where you could assumably escape out the window and jump down to the building next door), what do you do? Hopefully there's a chain ladder stashed in the dining area so you can climb down to safety rather than having to jump two stories and break both your legs.
Alas, no amount of Google sleuthing has uncovered any answers.
I don't even know where it's located so I can use Google StreetView to see what the front of the building looks like and where that door might lead.
What I wouldn't give to see blueprints for this amazing loft.
And construction photos. Because I'm assuming that this was a complete and total gut job that was reconfigured from scratch. It would be fascinating to see what actually went into creating this place.
Including how much money went into creating this place. One thing I do know is that it wasn't cheap.
UPDATE: Lora commented (below) about how she found the building in East Jordan, MI and the back view we see in the video is on Spring Street. Walking around to the front of the building in StreetView, you can see that it was built in 1911 and how it's located at 209 Main Street...
Googling that address brings up a real estate video from when it was for sale years ago, but no other information seems to be available. Zillow and Realtor.com doesn't have any information on the building at all... as if it doesn't even exist.
In any event, I'm more confused than ever about where the door in the front entry goes. Is there a little sun room for that window box out there? It seems to be confirmed that there are stairs on the right-hand side of the entry as I suspected. That would be the left-hand side of the front of the building, where you can kinda make out a green door behind the vestibule there. That makes this building seem like it has to be far longer than it seems.
But anyway... would still love to see the blueprints for the remodel. This remains one of the best uses of space in a building like this that I have ever seen.
Posted on Wednesday, December 20th, 2023
Last Monday I ran across an Instagram video from The Kangaroo Sanctuary with an adorable baby roo hopping into a makeshift "pouch." Since then the algorithm has determined that my feed should be flooded by all kinds of baby animals. And a lot of those are other videos from The Kangaroo Sanctuary.
Like this one of last week's little girl, Pippa, learning how to hop...
And this one of baby kangaroos at feeding time...
I really wish I had known about this sanctuary when I was at Uluru. Though I did visit a Koala sancturary in Brisbane where they had all kinds of animals. Including kangaroos...
Feeding a kangaroo. They're amazingly polite about it.
A momma kangaroo with a joey in the pocket!
Joey on the lookout.
I CAN HAZ CRUNCHY FOOD PELLETS? NOM! NOM! NOM!
And that's enough kangaroos for the morning since I need to head into the office. Another exciting day at work awaits!