Thursday, July 31, 2008

Craigslist Roundup: Naughty Reckless Drivers And Classic NES Fetishists

As y'all know by now, I loves me some wacky craigslist ads. A friend back in Rhode Island sent a tweet about this beaut last night, posted by a naughty little reckless-driving minx in Cranston who just wants to be punished for moving violations...and then get off, in more ways than one. The screenshot is below, in case the post gets flagged for removal for some reason. Click to enlarge.

Then, just this morning, Lis sent me the link to an awesome recent addition to the best of craigslist. You really must read the whole thing, but here's one of my favorite parts:
When you reach the end of level one, make sure to trigger the fireworks. This is vital to the entire experience. I must hear the fireworks. When level 2 begins and Mario walks into the pipe, I will penetrate you. You may say things like, "MORE", "HARDER", "YES", "FUCK ME", but nothing else. I will continue having sex until the level ends. DO NOT take the secret level skip. If you die I will pull out and spank you until the level restarts.
He's so particular! But I have to say, the line "When level 2 begins and Mario walks into the pipe, I will penetrate you" is (literally) fucking genius.

Update: Princess Chunky Is A Star

Just a few days after the Inquirer reported about the rescue of Princess Chunky, a 44-pound cat, by a Camden County animal shelter, the Princess has become a star. Her - or rather his, as a veterinarian has since determined Princess Chunky is a male - "foster mother" spoke to a radio chat show in London yesterday, and the cat was scheduled to appear on Live with Regis and Kelly this morning, as well as shows on several other networks over the next two days. The Inquirer also adds this interesting detail in today's story about Prince(ss) Chunky:
Shelter officials received a call from the owner, a senior citizen who lost her home to foreclosure and is now staying with friends. Because of her circumstances, the owner said she was "vey sad" she could no longer care for the 44-pound cat, shelter executive director Jennifer Anderch said in a telephone interview this morning.
The happy ending, of course, is that with all the media attention he's getting, Prince(ss) Chunky should have no trouble finding a new home!

Good Morning: Adina Howard, "Freak Like Me"

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Princess Chunky Of Jersey

Animal Control in Camden County, NJ, found a 44-pound cat last week that they've dubbed Princess Chunky.
There are fat cats and then there are fat cats.
South Jersey, to be sure, has seen its fair share of the indictable variety, but never before has it seen the likes of the portly pussycat found waddling in Voorhees.

Meet Princess Chunky -- all 44 pounds of her and just two pounds shy of the 1987 Guiness World Record for overweight cats.

Camden County Animal Control Officer Jim McCleery got the call Friday. There was a a stray cat prowling on a patio in the Ashley Run condominium development.

"We picked him up and I knew from the get-go it wouldn't fit in the regular cat carrier, so we had to put him in a dog carrier. . . it was a big cat, the biggest one this year," said McCleery of the Camden County Joint Municipal Animal Control Program.
The article goes on to say that Princess Chunky may have...diabeetus! Poor kitty. Someone did has too many cheezburgerz.

I'm Lovin' It

from Failblog via Joe. My. God.

Service Alert

Just wanted to let y'all know that posting may be a little sparse this week, as my evenings have been spent helping Brian get our new, shared space in order and my days are spent making sure all hell doesn't break loose after my last day at work.

But fear not: I've already got the rest of my School Bus Jams planned out for the rest of the week.

Good Morning: Zhané, "Hey Mr. DJ"

The second video in this week's celebration of School Bus Jams (explained here).

Monday, July 28, 2008

Best Word Of The Day Ever

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day today is:

t/y Kolajo and Kate

Score Another For Political Correctness And Kneejerk Liberalism

Joe is reporting - celebrating, perhaps - that Nike has pulled its allegedly homophobic ads, the gay reaction to which caused me to have an aneurysm here. While I think the entire thing was stupid from the start, I understand why Nike's doing this: even stupid controversy is potentially (and even then, only potentially) bad for business. But what have we - the gays, those of us supposedly harmed by such an advertisement - really won in the deal?

I think flipping out over advertisements in general is rather self-defeating, or at least counter-productive, simply based on the nature of media. Drawing attention to an allegedly offensive ad only gains it even wider exposure - for free, no less. Will that wider exposure carry some negative consequences for the company or product being advertised? Sure. But it'll also get the hype out about the product to plenty of people who don't find the ad offensive, are interested in the product, and may not have heard about it otherwise. So it's a double-edged sword, at best, to protest an ad campaign, particularly one like this, which was only questionably offensive in the first place.

This isn't to say that I think it's always a bad idea to protest an ad, but rather that we need to develop thicker skins (by which I really mean better critical thinking skills) when it comes to stuff like this. If you're a cocksucker, it's easy to look at the Nike ad above and see a negative judgment of your behavior. But I think these days, our society - not just minorities, but everyone in America - is constantly on the lookout for offensive things. This isn't a bad thing in theory, but in practice, I think we've developed a hair-trigger approach to this stuff. The reaction to these Nike ads is a prime example of that. And I shall say no more on the subject.

Good Morning: Mary J. Blige, "Real Love"

After Friday's Good Morning clip, I decided to dedicate this week's clips to School Bus Jams - the songs I remember hearing on the bus on the way to school when I was younger. First up, Mary J. Blige.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Birds Are Scared Of Amy Winehouse

Or at least her scarecrow doppelganger. A farmer in England has apparently made an Amy Winehouse scarecrow that has been surprisingly effective at keeping birds away from his crops.

The booze and cigarette for Amy Scarehouse were nice touches. Very creative. And hey - he's kinda cute, too!

Almighty Crack

Let me begin by saying that I'm glad that everyone got off this terrifying flight totally unscathed. I'd have shit my pants several times had I been on that plane - just look at the photos of the plane and tell me that's not some scary shit right there.

That said, the following headline

Made me think: "Girl, that ain't nothin' compared to the ALMIGHTY CRACK I seen on the trolley the other day!" Am I horrible?

Things I Like: July 25, 2008

That for a $70 contribution to the McCain campaign, you can wipe your feet on John McCain's name every day.

Deleting old e-mails.

Coming across long-forgotten, LOL-inducing, old e-mails in the process.

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog (now only available on iTunes).

These brutally hot photos of Carlos Freire at Made in Brazil. Yeah, I just said "brutally hot".

That the level of insanity this season on Project Runway - among both judges and contestants - is definitely already at "batshit crazy". And we're only two episodes in. Consult this post on Project Rungay if you don't believe me.

Avocados. Because they actually ripen in a reasonable amount of time in the summer.

Eric Leven's really smart post about ACT UP vs. barebackers.

That I came across this ad while checking the website of a newspaper back home:

And finally, this hilarious video by Secret Pants in which unsuspecting tourists on Independence Mall are presented with quotes and must identify the source: Adam West-era Batman or Bush (hat tip to Philebrity).

This has been another installment of Things I Like. Enjoy!

Good Morning: SWV, "Weak"

One of what I like to call my "School Bus Jams" from back in the day.

For Kolajo

Thursday, July 24, 2008

And Now For Something a Little Less Serious

"All you fat bitches shoulda got up out yo' seats when my fat ass pulled around in that goddamn pyramid." Love it. This clip is just a taste of Mo'Nique's utterly uproarious stand-up in The Queens of Comedy, which I highly, highly recommend. Whenever I'm feeling blue, that shit always makes me feel better.

Is Inability to Have Sex a Disability? Yes, Says D.C. Circuit

KJ brought this article to my attention the other day. The gist is as follows. In 2002, Kathy Adams took the Foreign Service entrance exams and passed with flying colors. Before her training started in January 2004, however, she was diagnosed with breast cancer and had surgery - specifically, she had a mastectomy and had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. The State Department then denied her entry into the Foreign Service because they could not guarantee she would have access to adequate follow-up care in her overseas assignments. Adams sued, claiming that the State Department was illegally discriminating against her because she had a disability. What disability was that, you ask? Sexual incapacitation.

Wait a minute - what now? Adams claimed, reasonably enough, that having her lady-parts removed made her gain weight and lose her libido, and that the resulting loss of ability to have sex constituted the loss of a "major life activity" as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Curious, I looked it up to see how it defines "disability":

(2) Disability

The term "disability" means, with respect to an individual

(A) a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual;

(B) a record of such an impairment; or

(C) being regarded as having such impairment.

So it's kind of vague, but based on my extremely amateur assessment and not having seen any of the evidence from the case, my guess is that I'd probably agree with the judges' assertions that 1) Adams does have a physical impairment that substantially limits her ability to have sex; 2) sex is a "major life activity" protected under the ADA; and 3) therefore, sexual impairment like Adams's qualifies as a disability under the ADA. (So, to answer your question, KJ: Yes, you can show up at work, get fired, and then claim you have vulvodynia and appeal under the ADA.)

Leaving aside some of the peculiarities of the case - in particular, the fact that the judges ruled that it didn't matter that the State Department didn't know the specifics about Adams's disability - KJ and I both found this quote from one of the judges in the majority rather puzzling, if not annoying:
"At the risk of stating the obvious, sex is unquestionably a significant human activity, one our species has been engaging in at least since the biblical injunction to 'be fruitful and multiply,' " appellate Judge David Tatel wrote, adding a citation to the Book of Genesis.
It's puzzling in that you don't see too many public figures these days using the Bible to prove what is ultimately a sex-positive stance: that the ability to have sex is a fundamental aspect of what it means to be human. But I prefer my sex godless, thank you, and that's what makes this statement annoying to me on first blush. My personal beliefs aside, it's also annoying from a logical standpoint. Humans have been around - and have been having sex - much longer than the Bible has existed, so to say that our species has been fucking since "at least the biblical injunction to 'be fruitful and multiply' " is to say something that's painfully obvious, if not downright moronic. And a D.C. Circuit Court judge ought to know that.

Good Morning: Cibo Matto, "Sugar Water"

One of Michel Gondry's best videos.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Let's Not Get Our Basketball Shorts In A Twist

This ad is causing quite a stir in the gay blogosphere, and I'm going to come right out, as it were, and say: I don't really get it. People are saying that this ad is homophobic. I can see where they're coming from, but I don't agree with them.

As a sort-of-recent college graduate who majored in English, I'm well aware that there are multiple ways to read the same text (or advertisement, in this case). But some girls (or readings, in this case) are bigger (or better, in this case) than others, as Morrissey would sing. And in this case, the girl who says this ad is more about getting owned on the basketball court than it is about accidental teabagging is the bigger girl.

My exegesis of the ad is as follows. What this ad is selling is sneakers. The need the sneakers address is the need to excel on the court. Our man in red is clearly not excelling on the court; so far is he from excelling that he's getting dunked on, big time. Dunked on so big that he's got another player's balls in his face. And that utter failure on the basketball court ain't right. So buy these Nikes. Period.

Brandon, a commenter on the blog of the ad agency that created the ad, Wieden+Kennedy, was particularly on point:
As a gay male and a black male, I find that some of the commenters are jumping the gun and crying wolf for an ad that I feel is in no way homophobic. Growing up, what made dunking on someone embarrassing was and is not a man's genitals in your face but the fact that you were slammed on. That's what this is about and I can't help but to feel that it is YOU (the negative commenters) that are ignorant by making such knee jerk reactions. I can't help but to feel that these comments are coming from people who don't play or enjoy basketball to get the point of reference.
"But," you might say, "why is it not right to have another dude's balls in your face? Clearly the ad is homophobic - intentionally or not!" Well, again, the ad isn't saying that balls-to-the-face "ain't right", but let's assume for a moment that it is. In the context of the ad - playing basketball - balls-to-the-face really ain't right. Period. Brian (full disclosure: my man) wrote the following in a comment on Joe.My.God. about this:
It's a fucking power play! It's a battle of masculine will and power. That's what makes sports exciting. And by the way - that's what makes BUTT FUCKING exciting.
I really can't say it any better than that. No one - at any number along the Kinsey scale - wants an opposing player's crotch in his or her face in the heat of competition. That's the key point: in the heat of competition. The moment you take this ad out of context, as pretty much every other gay blogger seems to have done, you're left with what seems to be a homophobic ad. But that's the problem: the moment you take it out of context, you can interpret it however you want. That's not reading the ad; that's bringing your biases and agendas to bear on it. Yes, fellow gays. We have biases too.

"A-ha!" you might exclaim. "But where is the context in this ad? There's no hoop or basketball! You're only assuming this is about basketball!" Well, I'll throw that back at you: if the scene is not happening in the context of basketball, then what exactly are we supposed to believe is going on? Anyone? Again, if you take basketball out of the equation, you can read the ad however you want. I think the homophobia that some people see in this ad comes more from sports itself than from the actual advertisement. Does homophobia permeate sports? Yes, certainly, to some extent it does. But that's a different question altogether. Even though I disagree with his larger point that the ad should be pulled, I think this snippet of Hamilton Nolan's post about this on Gawker puts it best:
That said, the larger point is that the joke here—as in other campaigns revolving around ALL OF AMERICA'S MOST POPULAR SPORTS—is based on the implacable homophobia of straight jocks. That can't be denied.
Finally, I find it infuriating and depressing that the best argument those who think this ad is homophobic can come up with is, "Look at this homophobic ad. It's so homophobic. Because it is. And if you don't see that, then you're a bad, self-hating gay. Fuck Nike!" Where's the argument there? There is none, except for maybe, "I find this offensive; therefore, it must be offensive." Um, no. It is two-thousand-and-friggin'-eight, people. It's time to leave political correctness in the 1990s where it should have already died.

Good Morning: Everything But The Girl, "Missing"

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Actually, I Don't Find This To Be "Phat" In Any Way

Some people dig a phat ride! Some people dig a phat crib! But everybody digs a Phatsac!

Um, actually not. I don't know what's more revolting: the horrible techno music blaring on the website, the nasty name of the product, or the ugliness of the Phatsac itself. You may thank (or blame) Google Ads for bringing this to my attention, though I'm not sure what e-mail I was reading that triggered a Phatsac ad. NOTE: Skank not included.

Estelle Getty Dies at 84

Farewell, Sophia. We'll miss you terribly. Hates Homeless People

The homepage is devoted to a non-story right now: homeless people.

Anyone who has lived here for at least a year knows that a) Philly has lots of homeless people, and b) there always seem to be more in the summertime, because the warm weather draws the homeless out of shelters and into the streets. This is nothing new, and I don't blame them for wanting to be outside, enjoying the warm months of the year like everyone else. But the great minds of our city's two major dailies, lacking anything more important to report, have apparently decided to try on a posture of cityphobic outrage this morning, with two stories, a poll, and a photo gallery (see the homeless in their native habitat!) devoted to understanding Our City's Homeless Scourge.

Don't get me wrong: I'm not exactly the world's most compassionate person when it comes to encountering homeless people - and no one should be doing it in Rittenhouse Square, homeless or not - but homeless people don't deserve the Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom treatment they're getting on right now.

UPDATE: Perhaps I'm wrong here. Even Rittenhouse Square itself seems to hate homeless people. (hat tip to Philebrity)

Good Morning: Madeline Kahn on "Sesame Street"

Ok. So I know I've posted a bunch of videos like this recently, but this one is too adorable not to post.

Monday, July 21, 2008

White, Powerlifting Offensive Linemen Weighing 311 or 313 Need Not Apply

Talk about a narrow fetish:

Scale will be provided. You must weigh exactly 312 lbs. SERIOUS INQUIRIES ONLY.

Your Vote Reflects Your Polling Place

Via Andrew Sullivan comes this interesting tidbit about the effect polling places have on voter behavior:
Jonah Berger, Assistant Professor of Marketing at the Wharton School of Business, conducted a terrific study where he demonstrates that where people vote affects how they vote. Essentially, people whose voting booth is located in a church are more likely to put more weight into social issues, people voting in fire houses care more about safety, and people voting in a school tend to put more weight on things like education.
Which makes me wonder: what does it mean if my polling place is a wallpaper store? Am I more likely to choose candidates who are aesthetically pleasing? Or whose names look nice printed on the ballot?

Good Morning: Liz Phair, "Stratford-on-Guy"

Friday, July 18, 2008

On Gay Bars: A Response to Eric Leven

Below is a comment I posted at Eric Leven's excellent blog KnuckleCrack.

I agree with pretty much everything that's been said here. The problem is, as Anonymous hints in the comments, we're now nearly 40 years past Stonewall, and queers don't have the same fight in us that we used to - because we've made an awful lot of progress during that time. Progress means being able to be out without fear, which means not all gays need spaces like bars and bathhouses to feel accepted and linked into a community.

There are other, non-queer-specific factors as well. U.S. cities, including New York and San Francisco, have experienced an incredible resurgence in the last 20 years or so. This drives up real estate prices, which has the effect of scattering gay communities, since higher expenses drive out those who can't afford them. We used to have downtown areas to ourselves because no one else would go near them. Now they're the hottest real estate there is. There's also the Internet, of course. I'm sure I don't need to elaborate on the effects of the Internet on gay culture to this crowd.

And frankly, there's the AIDS crisis. A bartender here in Philly told me a while back that two things were responsible for the demise of the most vibrant and crazy spots in town: the Internet and AIDS. AIDS killed off a huge number of our people - specifically, it killed the ones who remembered Stonewall, who remembered having to fight hard just to be out. They're also the ones who defined the scene during the 1970s and 1980s. When they died, the demographics and attitudes of gay people shifted dramatically.

There's also the effect of gay marriage, both as a concept and as a right. I'm surprised no one has mentioned Boston in the comments. Boston is a prime example of the death of gay culture. There are more gay bars in Providence, Rhode Island - a city 1/4 the size - than there are in Boston. Why? Gay marriage and the cost of living. Boston is super expensive to live in, and it happens to be in a state where gay marriage has been legal for years now. Gay culture has nearly died there because not enough people there need gay-specific spaces - at least not enough to pay Boston prices to live near them. Queers there are settling down, many in the suburbs, even if they're not getting married. The gay ghetto is nearly obsolete in Boston.

So on a certain level, we actually don't need gay bars – at least, not like we used to. And this is not something anyone else did to us, either. Things just changed, mostly for the better. If we need anything in terms of shared spaces, it's not more gay bars. It's better gay bars. Our current nightlife seems to me to be stuck in the past. Most gay bars – and there are exceptions, so don't get twisted here – are kind of all the same. But the ones that aren't the same are so refreshing that you wonder why you've put up with the places you've been going to. We need gay bars that reflect who and where we are now, not who and where we used to be.

Unfortunately, I'm going back to school in the fall, so one of you is gonna have to open one up.

Things I Like: July 18, 2008

Only having two weeks left at my job.

The debut of the fifth season of Project Runway!

Keith from the fifth season of Project Runway:

Hot damn. On a related note, guys who look like Bluto.

Apparently, I really like videos of Sesame Street or Muppets characters.

My coffee grinder, because it looks like R2D2:

Now that we seem to have entered the so-called dog days, gin and tonic.

Those insanely catchy Dunkin' Donuts jingles by They Might Be Giants.

And finally, the Pansy Division-Sex Dwarf two-for-one party at the Trocadero tonight.

This has been another installment of Things I Like. Bon appetit!

screengrab of Project Runway from the fabulously glamorous Project Rungay

Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) Wants to Keep Foreigners from Jerking You Around by the "Gas Nozzle"

But if an American citizen in an airport bathroom wants to jerk your nozzle, that's totally fine. Seriously, is there any doubt that this man is a flaming homosexual? I wonder how long it'll be before someone posts a remix of this to the interwebs.

via Talking Points Memo

Good Morning: Grace Jones, "Corporate Cannibal"

Holy freakin' shit is this video awesome. It's the first track (I think) off of Grace Jones's first new album in 19 years, Hurricane, which is due out in October.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

International Law, the Age of Consent, and Sexual Orientation

There's a lot going on in this story, which you should read even if you don't read the rest of this post. International intrigue, sex with teens, videotape, and even an Ivy League connection to make it extra shocking (to anyone who's never read IvyGate, that is). But I'd like to focus on this statement by the prosecutor:
"Children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Brazil have the same inherent value as children in the United States."
I don't dispute the validity of that statement. But coming as it does from a prosecutor, it suggests a larger prosecutorial interest in the welfare of minors in other countries. I don't think he meant to suggest that, but who knows? While I think it's fine for our political leaders or celebrities to draw attention to other countries' mistreatment of women and girls, I don't think our prosecutors ought to be making such statements.

On a very different note, KJ (aka The Hungry Photographer) posed to me the following question earlier today (paraphrased):
I think if he had been having sex with 14-17 year old boys that there would be no question of having a psychiatrist examine him; he'd already be in jail.
In thinking about KJ's question, I remembered this website with a list of ages of consent for countries around the world. It's interesting to have so much data in front of you, reminding you how differently gay sex is legislated around the world. Note also the number of U.S. states with "Law invalidated" in the columns showing ages of consent for gay and lesbian sex - laws making gay sex illegal here were struck down a few years ago by Lawrence v. Texas.

Anyway, that chart tells us that Brazil has the same ages of consent for all kinds of sex, so that doesn't really help answer KJ's question. Information on the Democratic Republic of Congo, however, is unknown - except for man-man sex, which is illegal. So on a very basic level, had the Foreign Service officer been doing this with 14- to 17-year-old boys and been caught by authorities in the Congo, yes, he would be in jail. But keeping everything the same except the gender of the children involved, would the carriage of justice - in the U.S. on child porn charges - have been the different? Does our history of legislating gay sex differently from straight sex have lingering effects when it comes to the application of justice? It's hard to know for sure, but I suspect KJ is right when she says yes to these questions.

Miss Piggy Does Peaches

I'm mulling over a more serious entry, but in the meantime, enjoy this frivolous clip of Miss Piggy doing "Fuck the Pain Away"!

United States (Finally) Ends HIV Travel Ban

As Joe says, "and the United States inches closer to the civilized world." Tied to the legislation that just passed to renew the President's Emergency Program for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) was a provision ending the ban on HIV-positive foreign travelers. The U.S. was one of only a few countries - Armenia, Brunei, China, Iraq, Qatar, South Korea, Libya, Moldova, Oman, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan were the others, according to HIVplus - that forbade HIV-positive non-citizens from crossing their borders.

The other good news is that the bill passed without a particularly disgusting amendment proposed by Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R-NC) that would have renamed the bill to honor the late Sen. Jesse Helms (also R-NC, hated on previously at JAWNNY here). Yay!

For a particularly moving reaction, I suggest reading this post by Andrew Sullivan, who may be the most well-known person affected by this bill.

Good Morning: The Trailer for "Xanadu"

I have an abiding affinity for movies that are so bad they're good, and Xanadu is one of my favorites in that category. The trailer is also a treat.

for Kate G, who says, "It's like they really thought it would be good."

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Slutty Koala Survives Brush With Vehicular Death

This seems like your standard "awww"-inducing, fuzzy animal-related news story...
A koala that cheated death after being hit by a car at 100 kmh (about 60 mph) and dragged with his head jammed through the vehicle grill for 12 kms (about 7 miles) is being dubbed Australia's luckiest marsupial.
...but you need to read it all the way until the end.
Lucky will stay at the hospital, set up by the late television wildlife and crocodile crusader Steve Irwin, for 45 days to recover from his experience and receive treatment for a chlamydial infection.
Maybe that speeding automobile was just God's way of saying that Lucky should've spent a little less time with loose lady koalas. Ha! Yeah right. Chlamydia is one of God's creatures too.

t/y Maureen

The Count Is A Nymphomaniac

I'm not the first to notice The Count's obsessive-compulsive ways. But when you bleep out the word "count" in the following song, he becomes a different kind of OCD case altogether.

t/y Elisabeth and Nafy

I Admit It: Cindy McCain Is Kind Of Fabulous

So she's eerily Stepfordy - I'm waiting for her humanoid dermis to get snagged on something at a campaign event, revealing her Cyberdyne Systems innards to scores of supporters and journalists - and obviously I disagree with her politics. But I submit to you that Cindy McCain is kind of fabulous. She has more money than God and is coiffed, coutured, and (likely) Botoxed to within an inch of her Borg Queen life (see left) - and she looks damn good. She also is a trained pilot because, she says, "In Arizona, the only way to get around the state is by small private plane." Love it. I think it'd be fun to kick back with Cindy and drink a few of those beers that made her so filthy rich, while she tells me all about how fun it is to be an ice princess and land your private jet on top of Neiman Marcus so you don't have to drive there and shit.

Photo of Cindy McCain, HBIC, by Flickr user PaisleyPitbull, used under a Creative Commons license

Good Morning: Y Kant Tori Read, "The Big Picture"

From Tori Amos's unfortunate initial foray into pop, in 1989, with her band Y Kant Tori Read. Clearly this was part of what killed the '80s.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Breaking: Massachusetts Moving to Repeal Residency Requirement for Marriage

The AP is reporting that the Massachusetts Senate has voted to repeal a 1913 law banning marriages between non-residents of the state. That law was originally passed, if memory serves, to prevent the state from becoming a hotspot for interracial marriage, as Massachusetts was unusual at the time for allowing people of different races to marry. Obviously, the impact of changing the law could be huge: gays from virtually any state could get legally married in Massachusetts and then sue their home states for not recognizing their marriage. It's not difficult to imagine this going to the Supreme Court.

The repeal must also be passed by the Massachusetts House and then signed by Gov. Deval Patrick, who has an out lesbian daughter and has indicated his support for the bill.

Feist Teaches Counting On Sesame Street

This is the most adorable video I've seen in a long time. And yes, she's singing "1,2,3,4" - with new Sesame Street-specific, super cute lyrics. My heart just melted a little.

Yet Another Reason to Lust After Chase Utley

Number 26 tells booing New York fans exactly what's on his mind: fuck you! Fuck yeah, Chase! I've never been more attracted to you. To paraphrase Mariah: wrestle me around, Chase. Play with me some more.

hat tip to Philebrity

Good Morning: Sophie Ellis-Bextor, "Get Over You"

for Tré and J.Ro

Drunken Epiphany

I'm watching a rerun of Sex and the City - the one where Carrie flips out at Big over something stupid never mind. The point is, I re-realized this (for like the 1000th time): Carrie Bradshaw is a stupid cunt. (Y/Y?)

Monday, July 14, 2008

New Yorker Cover Depicts Obamas As Terrorists

I get what The New Yorker is doing here, but I still think this is in rather poor taste.

Given the sorts of ridiculous, racist, non-reality-based e-mails about the Obamas that my step-dad forwards me on a regular basis, I can just imagine how this will be reused. It should only be a day or so before I get an e-mail with this image attached that screams, "Even the Liberal Magazine The New Yorker knows the Truth about Barack Hussein Obama and his wife Michelle!" Ugh.

Image from the July 21, 2008 issue of The New Yorker

Around Town: July 14, 2008

The 14th annual Philadelphia International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival kicked off on Thursday night. Philly Chit Chat has lots of great photos from the first night of festivities. Even a couple of Chi Chi LaRue sans drag!

Jocelyn Kirsch - mentioned previously in JAWNNY here - will plead guilty today to identity theft, the Inqy reports.

Walnut Street Capital, the developers behind the proposed 1,500-foot-tall American Commerce Center (pictured), are scheduled to meet with the City Planning Commission tomorrow, says the Metro. Here's hoping the meeting goes well - we think this would be an amazing addition to Center City and to the skyline.

WORD TO THE WISE: If you live in Bella Vista, Queen Village, or Society Hill and you're at one of those lovely summertime cocktail parties that spill out onto the sidewalk, be careful with that open container. There's a bike cop based at the South Street ministation who has been making life hard on local residents (including one very close to JAWNNY). And yes, we know laws are laws, but hauling well-behaved people away from a laid-back First Friday event? In paddy wagons? Gimme a break, as Nell Carter would've said! The Citypaper has the full story.

Image of the American Commerce Center from Philly Skyline

Good Morning: Debbie Gibson, "Only In My Dreams"

One of my childhood favorites.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Things I Like: July 11, 2008

As I mentioned earlier this week, Pet Shop Boys' 1993 album Very. It's been one of those where-have-you-been-all-my-life love affairs.

My friend Scott's muxtape.

Glenny's Bar-B-Que Soy Crisps. Holy freakin' crap are these things good.

Sleep, which I haven't gotten enough of in days.

Gatorade. Specifically, lemon-lime Gatorade. Yes, seriously. I can't get enough of it lately, and I've never particularly liked Gatorade before.

Hard boiled eggs.

The fact that I only have three weeks left at my job.

And finally, this video of Lauren Bacall hawking decaf coffee (via OMGblog). I. Cannot. Stop. Watching. It.

This has been the first installment of Things I Like. Enjoy!

What Is Up With Philly News Anchors?

Something must be in the air. A little over a month ago, we learned that CBS3 news anchor Larry Mendte was being investigated by the FBI for allegedly snooping on his co-anchor Alycia Lane (herself no stranger to scandal). Today, the Inquirer reports that NBC10 is conducting an internal investigation into a kerfuffle between two of its anchors, Vince DeMentri and Lori Delgado.

What is going on here? Do the members of every current and former male-female news duo in Philadelphia TV hate each other? I enjoy a good Tom Tucker-Diane Simmons dynamic (see above for one of their more friendly on-air exchanges) as much as anyone, but I don't really think it's good for our local media. On the other hand, maybe if all these news anchors were actually allowed to vent their mutual disrespect on the air, they wouldn't be keying each other's cars or breaking into their private e-mail accounts.

Also, since I'm wearing my Providence t-shirt today, I must share a former Rhode Islander's perspective on the aforementioned fictional news anchors from Family Guy. Though Wikipedia disagrees, I think that Tom Tucker and Diane Simmons are based on Gene Valicenti and Patrice Wood of Providence's WJAR. Pretty similar, right? Slap a moustache on Gene and he fits the bill. And trust me, as with Tom Tucker and Diane Simmons, there is an occasional hint of mutual contempt when Gene and Patrice are on the air together.

Good Morning: Bronski Beat, "Smalltown Boy"

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Of Bears and Men

If you've been paying attention, you know by now that I love reading missed connections on craigslist. One of today's missed connections triggered some thoughts, so let's discuss this (emphasis mine):
R3 Redeye - Cal hat - m4m - 33 (Gladstone)
Reply to: [redacted]
Date: 2008-07-10, 12:36AM EDT

White Tshirt, dark blue cargos, flip-flops, hat, scruffy face, hairy legs.....WOOOOF!! I woofed at you as I let you out, and I think you looked back, but not sure if it was a smile or a "hmm, would I do him?"

email me...
Okay. I'm a hairy gay guy, and perhaps as a result, I am no stranger to bear culture. I love facial hair, I love chest hair, and I love guys who choose not to remove it. I could be classified as a type of bear (an otter, if you're curious). My boyfriend's a bear, too. So is one of my favoritest bloggers. And yes, even some of my best friends are bears, of one type or another. I am one with the transcendental Bear that smiles over us all.

But the one aspect of bear culture I really don't get is woofing. As in actually woofing at guys they find attractive. I mean, bears - the kind that aren't human - don't woof. Dogs do. Why do gay bears woof? Is it to prove they're masculine? I'm not sure that regressing to animal sounds makes you more of a man. Is it just another aspect of the time-honored (and exhausting) bear codes? It's not exactly subtle, which is usually the point of a code. I'd think woofing at the wrong person would get you injured, or even institutionalized. What's so alluring about the woof? WHENCE WOOF?

If some guy woofed at me, I'd probably punch him in the face. Or at least sigh exasperatedly and say, "Really?", before abruptly walking off.

Unless he was hot, of course.

Photo by Flickr user Andrew_N, used under a Creative Commons license

Good Morning: Hoe-Down on "Dynasty"

This is one of those mind-boggling clips from the annals of our culture that makes me wonder: if indeed aliens exist and are able to watch bits of our old radio and TV transmissions that have traveled across the universe, what do they think of us when they see things like this?

Watch it until the end - trust me, it's worth it. The only way I can describe Joan Collins's singing is: Marlene Dietrich-meets-Susan Sarandon in Rocky Horror Picture Show, all wrapped up in a gaudy and out-of-place faux country motif.

t/y Brian

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Young and (In)famous

How have I never noticed before that has a "Philly's Own Bonnie and Clyde" subsite devoted exclusively to the saga of Jocelyn Kirsch and Edward Anderton? Check out the sensationalized, heinous-looking banner image:

Hideous! It's perfect - a fitting tribute to Philadelphia's most notorious identity thieves. I wish I could moralize about how this isn't really journalism and shit like that, but I think I totally love it.


We interrupt your normally light-hearted JAWNNY content to say simply: we cannot wait for this week to come to an end. Fun content should be back online shortly. That is all.


Image by Flickr user randomfactor, used under a Creative Commons license

Good Morning: The Muppets/NWA, "F**k the Police"

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Ruminations and Rumors: 7/8/08

The former Philadeli is now a Payless Shoe Store. Appalling.

The construction on South Street looks like it'll be done sometime between now and 2050. I'm joking...or am I?

I finally got around to reading that list of the country's best gay bars. Unsurprisingly, not a single Philadelphia establishment was on the list. But in fairness to a favorite of mine, I must say that the Westbury is the only gay bar in town that is consistently enjoyable.

I hear that Tria is pondering a new location in Graduate Hospital.

Album of the moment: Pet Shop Boys, Very.

Photo of the Pet Shop Boys by Flickr user baldiri, used under a Creative Commons license

Good Morning: ABBA, "Knowing Me, Knowing You"

For the Cannibal Debutante, who starts an exciting new chapter today

Monday, July 7, 2008

It's Not 'America's Next Top Best Friend'

Rich at fourfour just posted a great montage of a ton of reality TV contestants repeating the biggest cliché of the genre: "I'm not here to make friends."

I'm glad he saved Jade's infamous moment from Cycle 6 of America's Next Top Model (see title of this post) until near the end. Also, I'm a little appalled at myself for knowing off the top of my head that Jade was in Cycle 6.

Around Town: Riverfront Casinos...Maybe Not and the NYT Takes a Belated Interest in Penn Gossip

As Philebrity pointed out this morning, it seems that our governor has finally come around with respect to the riverfront casinos. The Daily News reported on Saturday that Gov. Rendell has said he'll meet with SugarHouse and Foxwoods to ask them to relocate the casinos they've been trying to build on the Delaware for a while now. Why they would actually agree to such a thing when the State Gaming Board approved those sites back in December 2006 - thanks in large part to the Guv'ner's aggressive support - is beyond me. But it's nice to see this story coming on the heels of Mayor Nutter's recent announcement that he fully supports and intends to follow the Penn Praxis plan for the riverfront. Maybe the casinos won't totally screw up Philly's eastern edge - or maybe they won't be there at all. We can hope, though that's always a dangerous thing to do in Philadelphia.

Across the river - the Schuylkill, that is - a more gossipy story. Back in March, The Daily Pennsylvanian reported that the University of Pennsylvania was renaming a campus landmark. (Full disclosure: I am employed by said institution.) Logan Hall, which had been known by that name for about a century, would become Claudia Cohen Hall. Cohen, who graduated from Penn in 1972 and died of ovarian cancer in 2007, was known for being a former editor of Page Six, the popular (and highly recommended by JAWNNY) gossip column in The New York Post. She was also known for having married and divorced wealthy businessman (and frequent Page Six topic, natch) Ronald Perelman, also a Penn alum, who contributed funds to renovate the building back in the 1990s and decided to finally exercise his naming rights. The general reaction on campus and among alumni to the renaming of one of Penn's most historic buildings was best summed up by this DP commenter: "Is this the April Fool [sic] issue already?" By now, it seems to have mostly blown over, and it's definitely old - if still intriguing - news, yet The New York Times seems to have only now discovered the story and covers it as though it just broke. A sign of the waning relevance of traditional media, or of the NYT's general disregard for Philadelphia? You decide. At any rate, there are some choice quotes in the NYT story - "totally idiotic," says one professor - and Ivy League intrigue is always good for readership, I guess.

Good Morning: Pet Shop Boys, "Go West"

Even when they're covering someone else's song, the Pet Shop Boys always manage to work in extra layers of meaning.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Jesse Helms Dies, America Rejoices

So y'all probably know by now that Jesse Helms died yesterday at the age of 86, leaving behind a legacy of hate and bigotry. I think our nation's 232nd birthday deserves better than to be sullied by the coincidence of being the deathday of a man who, quite honestly, was a horrible enemy of freedom and tolerance, two virtues upon which the United States of America was founded. But at least we're rid of a horrible man.

My good friend and firebrand of a Southern woman, the Hungry Photographer, posted the following remembrance on her blog yesterday, which I am pleased to share with you.
It’s about time.

I've been getting phone calls all morning to tell me that Jesse Helms is dead. I was wondering how long that pig valve was gonna hold up. But also, since it's the 4th of July, I can pretend that all the hoopla and fireworks is in celebration of his demise.

And I hope that whoever it was I went to GSE with, who worked with him and claimed I never saw his "sensitive side", bawls her little plastic eyes out today in remembrance of her old boss. I also hope she realises that it's people like him who have spread incendiary lies for so long that have led to stalled social equality and justice. Actually, I doubt she'd realise that, being as brainwashed as she appeared.

At any rate, wherever you are - in whatever corner of the globe - hoist a big fat one for the death of Jesse Helms, big ol' racist homophobe that he was; soon he'll be eaten by the same worms who are eating others that he denigrated. Ah, equality at last.
Praise the Lord, and pass the ammunition. Here's to a world without Jesse Helms.

P.S.: The Hungry Photographer and I also recommend the Apostropher's post on this topic.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Independence Day

Elton John singing "Philadelphia Freedom" on Soul Train, probably not too far removed from the year of our nation's bicentennial. Happy Fourth, everyone!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Things I Love About Philly

It hasn't been the best week for Philadelphia. We just found out we're the bike-stealingest and third-most-obscene city in the country. And that's before we talk about about the hordes who have descended, like so many fannypack-wearing locusts, on our city for the Fourth of July OMG WTF WELCOME AMERICA PRESENTED BY SUNOCO!

So I want to take a moment to remember why this city is great. This is a totally off-the-top-of-my-head list of Things I Love About Philly.

The Comcast Center lobby:

Walt Wit...

...and in the interest of keeping things fair and balanced, Philly Pale Ale.

The Rodin Museum:

Overheard in Philly.

And Philebrity, of course.

Santa's trolley:

Philly Skyline.

And on a related note, Inga Saffron.

Mayor Nutter:

The Italian Market.

Old churches with a sense of humor:

Thrifting and furniture-hunting in Germantown.

The Pink Rose.

Guerrilla street art:

Reading I Love You, I Hate You on Saturday mornings.

Being in Rittenhouse on the first day of truly nice spring weather.

The Westbury.

Views like this:

It's not an exhaustive list, by any means, but I'm feeling better about Philly now. How 'bout youse guys? What's on your Philly favorites list?

nod to Philebrity for the bike-stealing and dirty-Internet-searching stories

Bush to Survey Damage Caused by His Presidency

Which means he has to tour the entire country:

Bush Tours America To Survey Damage Caused By His Disastrous Presidency

If we didn't laugh about it, we'd have to cry. And crying is no fun.

via Andrew Sullivan

Good Morning: Maroon 5 feat. Rihanna, "If I Never See Your Face Again"

If you don't like the song, just turn the volume down and watch Rihanna and Adam Levine be hot at each other.

UPDATE: As my esteemed colleague J.Ro has pointed out in the comments, YouTube has removed the video, but you can view it on Maroon 5's website here.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Bai Ling Has A Blog

Bai Ling has a blog. That's right: the professional party girl, frequent TV show guest-appearer, and favorite target of Go Fug Yourself puts her fingers to keyboard and produces written language for distribution over the internets. A lot, actually. I haven't had a chance to read through all of her erudite musings on parties, being semi-famous, clubs, and more parties, but I must say she has quite a way with words:
So tired after shooting, because I did not sleep for a few nights jet-legged and vegas faver, its hard to relaxing here in Vegas just stay in, but only when you are totally out of your mind and body can not think strait anymore then you will stay in and just watch the city breath in the heat of the evening sea of colored lights and the heat waves almost knocked me to the ground, heat waves can become wind? Wow......
Heat waves can become wind? What? Bai continues:
Magic, even the heated nature shows you the magic just like this if you pay attention to peek in, I stayed out of my hotel in the middle of the empty street when my car dropped me from the set, I just frosen there in the middle, all the cars frosen in front of me too, maybe to them I am some kind of strange magic dropped from the sky and made the fire and waves that burns Vegas, my skin burns in the shining sunlight with the changing color reflects thousends of butterflies...... Just like the reflection you see right now from up close and distance.......
She really is deft with the double it were. I think my favorite part is, "maybe to them I am some kind of strange magic dropped from the sky and made the fire and waves that burns Vegas, my skin burns in the shining sunlight with the changing color reflects thousends of butterflies". Fire and waves and thousands of butterflies, all in the middle of Las Vegas? She must really have a...straaaaaaange ma-a-a-gic! I don't know what substance causes such thoughts, but I'll have what she's having.

UPDATE: Those of you unfamiliar with Bai Ling may not fully appreciate her...erm, talent, so here's a clip of her performing on VH1's But Can They Sing? (t/y Kolajo)

Source: OMG blog
Image: from Flickr user hurricanepoontang, used under a Creative Commons license

New Hotel Planned for 15th and Locust

A friend tells me that the building on the northwest corner of 15th and Locust in Center City - the one with the Bassett's Turkey on the first floor - will be torn down to make way for the Hotel XV/L. Demolition is slated to begin by the end of the year, and the new 18-floor, 144-room hotel will open in early 2010. The name is, of course, a play on its location, as my friend gleefully pointed out.

I'm not wild about the font they're using over the entrance in the rendering, but renderings are just make-believe anyway. All in all, it seems like this could be a swanky little place, and I also think it's a smart location for a new hotel.

Image: Real Estate Forum

Good Morning: Jane Child, "Don't Want to Fall in Love"

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

'Staycation' Needs To Take A Permanent Vacation

I'm not usually one to shy away from neologisms. I love coined terms, spoonerisms, portmanteaus, and the like. But there is a word entering common usage - especially in the context of our recent insane gas prices - that I cannot stand:


I had not learned of 'staycation', my new bête noire, until I had a recent instant message chat with a friend regarding my recent vacation at home. He informed me that people were calling such stationary getaways 'staycations', to my horror and disgust. Apparently it has been around since at least 2006, if its entry on Urban Dictionary is reasonably reliable, but it hasn't found its proper moment in the cultural spotlight until now.

"What's so wrong with it?" you may be wondering. It is an abomination. Overly cutesy, orthographically clumsy with that wretched "yc" trainwreck in the middle, and downright insipid. And this is coming from someone whose own blog's name is of similar construction! 'Staycation' is forced fun in word form. It is designed to make you feel better about the fact that you can't afford to go vacation anywhere more interesting or exotic than home. It does not make me feel better. It makes me want to hurt someone. And I will do everything in my power to keep its popularity from growing.

Will you join me?

Good Morning: Go Home Productions, "Supreme Evil"

A mash-up by the excellent Mark Vidler of ELO's "Evil Woman" and The Supremes' "Stop in the Name of Love", with a dash of Michael Jackson's "Bad".

And Here I Thought NPR Was Classier Than Other Radio

WHYY's Brenda Jorett just asked, "When was the last time you had a tour guide dressed as an enema?" Wow.