Sunday, February 28, 2010

Re-cut movie previews

Movie previews can be quite misleading, as several youtube videos show. Here's a re-cut trailer for "Mary Poppins" that sells it as a horror film:

Another family classic given the horror treatment:

Forrest Gump: a horrifying movie:

Judging from the dozens of horror-style recuts on youtube, it seems pretty easy to make most movies seem like horror films. But what about the other way around, making a horror movie seem like a comedy? Here's the trailer for a wacky romantic comedy called "The Shining":

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Create your own Harper's Index

Harper's Index is the monthly list of surprising, damning, unbelievable and funny statistics and facts compiled each month by the great Harper's Magazine.

Now you don't have to wait for the magazine to come out, you can create your own Harper's Index by searching for any political subject you are interested in here.

For example, searching for, say, Dick Cheney gives you a long list of fun facts such as "Days after the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin Resolution that Dick Cheney married, securing a draft deferment: 22." And "Minimum number of pheasant hunts Dick Cheney has gone on since he shot a hunting companion in 2006: 5."

Entering "Taxes" produces a list of that includes items like "Number of the top ten military contractors that have paid no federal income taxes since 1981: 6." And "Average change, since 1977, in the annual federal taxes paid by the richest 1 percent of American families: -$44,440."

If you don't want to create your own Index, you can just look through the archives, which are now online.

Hastily Made Cleveland Tourism Video

The Hastily Made Cleveland Tourism Video was popular on the internet a year or two ago, but I never realized that there was a sequel that is even more Clevetastic than the first one.

Here's the classic first Hastily Made Cleveland Tourism Video:

And the second

As Jack Donaghy once said, we’d all like to flee to the Cleve and club up at the Flats and have lunch with Little Richard, but we fight those urges.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Garfield Minus Garfield

The secret to enjoying the old, repetitive comic strip "Garfield" isn't to love lasagna or cats, or to love reading about how much a cat hates Mondays. It's to just take Garfield out of Garfield. Completely remove the cat, and you're left with Jon's depressing existential musings. His pathetic whines are almost poignant without the smug cat's smirks and bad jokes.

Remove the cat, and all that is left is the truth.

The awful truth.

As the website creator explains, Garfield Without Garfield transforms a mundane comic strip into something much different, and much more interesting: "It is a journey deep into the mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against loneliness and depression in a quiet American suburb. "

Bad names: just in case, barbed wire, stand still

Some people have bad puns for names.

I like the ones where someone chooses a profession that makes their name funny, like Dr. Doctor, or the dentist Les Plack.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Vic Chesnutt tribute concerts

The late great Vic Chesnutt died on Christmas day. The 40 Watt Club in Athens, Georgia, where he was "discovered" by Micheal Stipe, recently staged the Vic Shows, a celebration of his life and music, featuring a lot of great acts.

The blog Southern Shelter posted links to live recordings of the songs, it's a must for anyone who likes Vic's music and/or any of the artists who performed.

Yayayaya, trolololo, lalala, hahaha, lololo, hahaha, lalala, lololo...

This smiley 1970s Russian man in the wig lip-synchs weirdly, yet compellingly. His name seems to be Edward Hill.

I cannot turn away.

Lalalalala, nananananana, nonononono, yayayyayayayyaya, nanananana, lololololo...

Tim Burton's new remake

Tim Burton's got a new movie coming out, a remake of a well-known classic. Judging from the preview, it's got that unique Burton style,as well as his regular cast members Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter.

Tim Burton's Weekend at Bernie's:

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The only twit worth reading

Apparently, Twitter is still around. Old people are still discovering it, and slightly less old people are still figuring out that it's pretty pointless. But there is one man who makes it worth occasionally checking out, one voice from the past reborn via this rather useless new medium, that of the first man to ever be photographed while flipping the bird, Old Hoss Radbourn.

Old Hoss Radbourn was a famous baseball pitcher in the 1880's, and he died over 110 years ago. But that isn't stopping him from posting silly and amusing updates to Twitter.

Old Hoss puts out the twits on popular topics of the day, but in his classic 19th-century-ballplayer voice. Sample twit, on spring training: "Just talked to Cobb. He loved spring training. Worked on his spiking skills, often by sliding into waiters. Made dining out awkward." On Olympic hockey: "Land alive. This "hockey" is marvelous! It is a shame that, like "Super G," it is only played once every four years."

It's good to see someone that can make twitter interesting, rather than just posting the equivalent of "I have a ham radio!"

Old Hoss says Twit this:

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Boom! Boom-boom, cha!

Phil Spector is in everyone's head.

His production made the drum intro to "Be My Baby" by the Ronettes one of the most famous-- and most copied-- drum beats in rock history. The blog Music For Kids Who Can't Read Good has put up mp3s of 20 songs that blatantly use/steal/refer to/pay tribute to that beat. I don't know what it sounds like to listen to all 20 of these songs in a row, as I doubt I'd be able to get past "Heat of the Moment" by Asia. If you want to give it a try, download them and report your scientific findings here.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

More Songs About Curling and Beer

It's the winter Olympics, and that means one thing: it's curling time!

This site offers links and info about every great song about curling ever recorded, and also 9 others.

Here's the best of the lot, by Weakerthans.

It's important to always remember The Spirit of Curling: "Curling is a game of skill and traditions. A shot well executed is a delight to see and so, too, it is a fine thing to observe the time-honored traditions of curling being applied in the true spirit of the game. Curlers play to win but never to humble their opponents. A true curler would prefer to lose rather than win unfairly.

A good curler never attempts to distract an opponent or otherwise prevent him/her from playing his/her best.

No curler ever deliberately breaks a rule of the game or any of its traditions. But, if he/she should do so inadvertently and be aware of it, he/she is the first to divulge the breach.

While the main objective of the game is to determine the relative skills of the players, the spirit of the game demands good sportsmanship, kindly feeling and honorable conduct. This spirit should influence both the interpretation and application of the rules of the game and also the conduct of all participants on and off the ice."

The previous text was taken verbatim from the World Curling Federation (WFC) curling handbook. The Spirit of Curling is familiar to all who curl and its principles guide the sport.

Curling is one of the few sports in the world that emphasizes etiquette. All games, regardless of level, start and finish with hand shakes. In most league play, there are no referees or judges. Rules are based on the honor system and good shots are admired by all. Missed shots are never cheered.

The Olympic status has increased the competitive nature of the game, as well as overall interest in the sport. Despite the competitive aspect of the game, curling remains a highly social and gracious sport for all age groups.

"Broomstacking": One tradition in curling is broomstacking. The term refers to the social get-together between opponents after each game. Originally, curlers, after completing a curling game on the pond, would stack their brooms in front of the fire and enjoy beverages with the opponent. This tradition is still alive today. It is expected that you partake in broomstacking after every game."

Broomstacking, how cool is that?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Two Gentlemen of Lebowski

The Big Lebowski, as if written by William Shakespeare:

Two Gentlemen of Lebowski.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Videos that don't suck

I just said that I don't watch many music videos, but still even so here are two of my favorites of the past few years.

First, Zach Galifinakis and Bonnie Prince Billy drivin' tractors and lip-synching to Kanye West's "You Can't Tell Me nNothin'."

And here are the folks from Noah and the Whale busting some sweet dance moves in a no-budget-Wes- Anderson-style clip for their song "Five Years Time."

Thursday, February 11, 2010

A good music video?

I don't watch a lot of music videos, but this one stands out: "This Too Shall Pass," by OK Go, (pronounced Okgo?) who made the famous playing-while-on-treadmills video of a few years ago.

"This Too Shall Pass," is at least as good. I love the horn section that suddenly appears that was there all along.

Edit: And here's another incredible Okgo video for "This Too Shall Pass," a completely different one that must have been nerve-wracking to shoot, I'd hate to be the one who screwed up the shooting in any ruining the take:

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Coach Kay question on Jeopardy

How did this woman not get credit for her answer?

Jeopardy, you can't handle the truth!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

An excellent way to be happy!

The brilliant Dinosaur Comics has performed an important service by showing us all how to better deal with stupid other people and their stupid opinions.

(In my opinion, I mean, and I'm probably totally wrong.)

It works! Fun times. (IMOIMAIPTW.)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Alzheimer's Causing Baby Boomers to Misremember the 60's Even More

The 60's! The Free Summer of Love in Vietnam, with the Beatles tying an onion to my belt at Woodstock. Get off my lawn, Nixon! In my day, we used to have to hitchhike uphill both ways to buy LSD from groovy Jerry Dylan. No war, until I'm too old to fight in one. We used to tie-dye our love beads with Moby Grape. Peas, brother!

Alzheimer's Disease is causing Baby Boomers to Misremember the 1960's Even More.

How could anyone misremember the 60's, with all the attention the media still gives to that decade? People who weren't born until 1970 remember it well.

Steve Sabol: Mr. NFL Films, and an artist.

The Best Sportswriter in America recently had a great post about Steve Sabol, the guy who runs NFL Films.

Posnanski really captures the greatness of the old NFL films pieces, from the Voice of God narration to the wrought writing to the inspiring music. It really made football seem great, and it's probably a big part of why I liked the NFL way more in the 1970s than I do now.

But I was stunned to see that Sabol isn't just a football guy, he's an artist. A football themed artist, actually. His stuff is cool, it's a jumble of advertising imagery and old time football, with NFL-Films-style titles like "Every Moment Is Another Chance," and "Shula Unbeaten."

In fact, I think that the classic NFL Films music should be playing whenever you look at Sabol's art. That would be the perfect football/advertising/art multimedia experience.

Long live 65 Toss Power Trap!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

PHROCK 'n roll: free downloads of classic albums

The PHROCK Blog website offers history, info, cover images and downloads of some great classic rock, psychedelic and hard rock albums of the 60's and 70's, many of them forgotten, under-appreciated and/or out of print. Lately, they've posted albums by Hendrix, Lou Reed, Joe Walsh and many by less famous groups like The Strawbs, Graham Bond, Toad, and The Ultra.

Loads of great stuff there worth checking out.

So, Read Any Weird Books Lately?

The Weird Book Room has cover images and links for ordering weird books. I would actually like to read a few of the ones lsited, though probably not "Liberace: Your Personal Fashion Consultant," or "Why Do I Vomit?" and definitely not "What's Wrong With my Snake?" Their choice for the world's weirdest book looks interesting. Utterly insane, but interesting.

Angry people in local newspapers

The title of this English website pretty much says it all: Angry People in Local Newspapers. They are all so angry!

How to suck at Facebook

The webcomic site does hilarious comics with helpful advice for all of us idiots out there.

The newest one is very helpful indeed. It's called How to Suck at Facebook.

Check out the Oatmeal's other valuable life lessons, including such webcomics as How to Use a Semicolon, Twenty Things Worth Knowing About Beer, and Five Reasons Pigs are More Awesome Than You.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Another episode of Axe Cop!

Hooray, Episode Six of Axe Cop is now available.

The moral of the story: don't get so smart that your smartness causes a unicorn horn to pop out of your forehead.


Monday, February 1, 2010

How to be a TV news reporter

The very funny Charlie Brooker explains how to be a TV news reporter.

What's sad is that his sarcastic version of stereotypical British TV news is still better than what U.S. reporters typically manage.

Lame Book

Collecting the stupidest posts, most embarrassing revelations and worst spelling on the popular social networking site bookface, I mean facebook, is the hilarious Lame Book.

You can spend hours there marveling at how dumb people are, and how many people don't understand how the internet works.

Sad Hipsters in Luxurious Suurroundings

Why are the wealthy hipsters so sad?

Their fantastic homes make them sad, so sad. They must gaze into the distance, and ponder ponderous things. Poor sad hipsters. We should take up a collection for them.