Friday, July 25, 2008

The tyranny of children and other amusements

Oh, man. I wish I knew folks with kids to whom I could send this essay. Wait, don't I have a nephew around here somewhere? I thought I had a nephew around here somewhere...

Enough said

The commenter today on Sadly, No was correct: Some blogosphere dumbassery doesn't need fisking so much as it needs a link to this.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Great Google Map, sad coffee times

Coffee fiend? Wondering about the upcoming Starbucks closures? Worse -- coffee fiend and know you're losing your 'bucks? Slate's got a pretty little collaborative map going, where you can both find your local losses and comment on them. And yes, I am losing one of the newer Starbucks in my part of town; I'd be lying if I said we were hurting for coffee here in this part of Seattle, but it was a really nice place and the baristas were sweet. I hope it all works out for them.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

1... 2...

Oh no...

1. Jo Stafford, marvelous singer of standards ("Wheel of Fortune") and apparently a fairly smart cookie to boot. That rich, warm, clear voice -- trust me, your warbling waifs of the current era will not sound remotely this good 50 years hence.

2. Estelle Getty, the first of our beloved Golden Girls to check out -- ironically, the second-youngest cast member (those were indeed some prosthetics, and yes Getty was younger than Bea Arthur). She was a pretty smart cookie herself; according to the LAT obit linked above, her insight into what makes senior women tick was fantastic:

Getty, a natural comedienne famous for her one-liners even in private life, played Sophia for laughs, but she also brought depth to the character. It was her idea that Sophia would always carry a purse because, she said, older women are forced to shed so many possessions in their later years that everything they own ends up in their purses.

"Nobody puts down their life very easily," she explained in a 1992 interview with Newsday.

Not wrong, she.

(ETA: ...3, Last Lecturer Randy Pausch. And also my great-uncle Herb, but that's a more localized mourning I suppose. Though as a WWII vet he loved Jo Stafford, and he could have been one of those gentlemen callers on Golden Girls... Hell of a life. I will miss him.)

Where nerd girls become mean girls...

...they go like this. The Go Fug Yourself crew is always amusing, but this piece of gamer snark just makes me outstandingly happy today. Even if it's clear that their Sims were better socially adjusted than mine. (I stopped playing after my Sim, a blonde nerd with multiple science projects, obsessive cleaning habits and no social life, spawned an evil twin who beat her up and got her arrested for trespassing in her own Sim-house. Stupid game.)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Should've known better than to ignore the laugh

The definition of lack of faith: seeing Joss Whedon + Neil Patrick Harris + Nathan Fillion + musical and thinking "nah, might suck." I'm an idiot and Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog really was that good, start to finish. How did I get so jaded? Also, How does one not experience deep joy at the familiar GRR! ARGH! Mutant Enemy card? Happiness.

A local hero

I've been spending a certain amount of time lately thinking about the gap between my overinvolved (and over-crispy) online self and my offline self, which... well, isolated ain't in it. Nothing against Seattle, or DC, or NYC, or anywhere else I've been living, but the whole bowling-alone thing came true with a vengeance for a generation of smart folk who turned away from group interaction in the realms where you can't be quite so self-selecting. It's understandable considering what we've all been through these past 7.5 years, I suppose (and alas, as the societal gaps get wider, the offline world mimicks the online), but I'm thinking lately about what constitutes an effective and ethical community presence, preferably in a mode that does not require sustained interaction with your Seattle hippier-than-thou types. (There is no more uninformed and humorless hippie than your Seattle hippie. If these are the do-gooders, I fear I must do bad simply to keep from doing murder. I digress.)

Anyway, Kitsune Noir, which has been so kind in supplying us all with beautiful new desktops each week, has answered my Sunday state of mind with a link to "Martin the Tailor," a wonderful 8-minute documentary that posits one way of existing in the world with both eyes and heart open. Check it out and see if you don't find this Martin Greenfield fascinating.

Martin the Tailor from Ed David on Vimeo.