Cafe 227

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Now Presenting: Seinfeld, the Lost Episode

Via National Lampoon...

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

The Rich. They're Different from You and Me.

I, thankfully, do not have any children. I do have a little brother though. Matty Shades - as he's known around these parts - recently turned 14. I've spoiled him rotten ever since he was a toddler. This Christmas will be no different - he will be getting a hard-to-find video game system* from his big brother this year.

I consider this gift exorbitant. It's certainly more than anyone ever spent on me when I was 14, and it's far more than he deserves. However, according to CNN Money, the money I spent on this video game system is a mere pittance compared to the price tags on many toys for the kids of the uber-rich. I encourage you to look at all 10 of the toys featured in the article. My favorites are below:

* Not the Playstion 3. The other one.

Grand Victorian Mansion

Price: $22,000

Description: "This Victorian house is straight out of a fairy tale. It includes a wraparound porch, a stained-glass window, window boxes, a skylight and a doorbell and brass door-knocker. The interior resembles a real house with sponge-painted walls, simulated hardwood floors, fireplace mantel and an upstairs loft accessed by ladder."

Comment: For an extra $15,000, FAO Schwarz will throw in a team of oompa loompas (here illegally from Loompaland, of course) to tend the garden. Also, I think my parents house in Pittsburgh was recently assessed at a slightly higher price than this.

Lego Life-Sized Batman

Price: $27,000

Description: "This Caped Crusader can guard your child from all that lurks in the night. A statue stands 6'6" tall and is made of Lego bricks, with a yellow utility belt and heavy cape fabric. It comes in three parts to assemble."

Comment: It comes in three parts to assemble? What boring, torpid kid would want a pre-assembled Lego statue? Kinda takes the fun out of the whole Lego thing. More disturbing, what precisely does it do? Are you supposed to just stare at it all day? Does it come alive at night and battle the boogey man and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? (Or am I the only one that had nightmares about the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man as a kid?) I'm pretty sure you could actually purchase Michael Keaton at this point for less.

Fantasy Coach

Price: $47,000

Description: "This carriage promises to make your little princess's dreams come true. Handcrafted of wood and fiberglass, the oval-shaped interior measures just over 6 feet in diameter. Linens and interior options can be added upon request."

Comment: Christ almighty. Let's just move on.

Massive Wilbur Piggy Bank

Price: $6,000

Description: "Turn your child's room into a fiscal institution with this all-metal piggybank. Wilbur is made from 100 percent recycled aluminum and painted with nontoxic acrylic paint. Each comes with a brass medallion and announces Wilbur's favorite phrase: 'Some pig!' This extra large pig can be extremely heavy if filled with coins, weighing up to 1,000 lbs."

Comment: I, too, had a piggy bank as a kid. It was about as big as a shoe box. I would fill it with nickels and quarters, with the occassional Susan B. Anthony dollar thrown in. I would dip into it every time I wanted some Sweedish Fish or Lemonheads at the candy store. (Like now, I spent most of my money on food as a kid.) At no point did it approach 1,000 lbs. I guess these kids need something a little heftier to handle their allowances. Some pig, indeed.

Best Product Ever

I am in love with a new product.

If I were more learned or capable, I would write an ode to it, or sing its praises in public plazas. Instead, I will blog about it and share its wonders with the five people who read Cafe 227.

Those of you who know me know that I like food. I also have to wear clothes. Sometimes, in my zest for consuming food and beverage, some of the delicious morsels or libations get equally excited and decide to adorn my clothing rather than join the happy wonderland that is my belly. While this is fine with me on a strictly spiritual level, "society" says that "stains" that are "all over my shirt" are "unacceptable."

Well, come to the Church of Procter & Gamble and be saved, my friends, for the little wonder tool you see below has given me a new lease on life. So far, soy sauce splattered from a dropped sushi roll, ketchup from a juicy (yet mildly healthy) turkey burger, and a Mint Condition from Caribou have all been eliminated by the power that is the Tide To-Go Instant Stain Remover SUPERBEING.

I don't know how it works. All I know is that I spill shit on myself, I press some liquid onto my shirt, I close my office door and "work hard" for 10 minutes and the stain is gone.

I'm currently crying tears of joy. Thank you, Tide. Thank you so much. I love you.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Thanksgiving Leftovers...

Hmmm, I actually only have 2 links. Slow week.


On live television, no less...

Monday, November 20, 2006

Prescient, maybe. But not surprising.


prescient \PREH-shuhnt; -shee-uhnt; PREE-shuhnt; -shee-uhnt\, adjective: Knowing or anticipating the outcome of events before they happen.

So, I guess Pete Thamel's use of "prescient" in this New York Times article about the death of former Michigan coach Bo Schembechler is technically correct. Here's the passage:

"A punk band based in Columbus known as the Dead Schembechlers — its name prescient and unintentionally macabre — said it would disband in honor of the coach after playing at a Hate Michigan Rally on Friday."

Technically correct. But still, how much of a stretch is it to foreshadow the death of a 77-year old man? Or anyone for that matter?

Also, since the band's members ostensibly didn't choose its name by accident, I would say the "Dead Schembechlers" is intentionally macabre. But this is a quibble.

A Postcard From Boston

So I stayed at the uber-hip Hotel Marlowe this weekend in Cambridge, which is located right next to an "Old Fashioned Southern Garden"...

What, precisely, comprises an "Old Fashioned Southern Garden," you ask? A dead tree next to an enormous mound of well-placed stones, apparently...

Boston: it's got its charms, but it sure isn't the prettiest city in the union.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Beautiful Rainbow in Tysons Corner

At approximately 2:30pm EST today, I saw this big, beautiful rainbow outside my office window. It momentarily warmed my heart. The rainbow stayed around for about 5 minutes or so before fading. Now, at approximately 3pm EST, the sky is as black as a raven's blood, and I fear the end of the world is nigh. Weather sure is crazy sometimes, ain't it?

And Before I Go Again...

More fun stuff, before I hit the road again tomorrow. I can't wait until things slow down - there's a community herb garden right behind my house that I've been dying to rant about, but just haven't had the time. On to the links:

  • I know this is probably no laughing matter, but it's hard to take an affliction known as the "Cum Cum Disease" seriously. The best thing about this article is the quote from the Manga artist, who I suppose serves as some sort of expert on women's health in this context. I can just imagine the conversation that took place between the writer and the editor:
Editor: "The story's OK, but it's missing something. Maybe a quote from an expert in this field?"

Writer: "You mean, like a gynecologist or something?"

Editor: "Yeah. Or maybe just someone who's slept with a lot of women."

Writer: "Great idea! I'll see if we can talk to any professional athletes. Or better yet, a Manga artist."

  • So, Sacha Baron Cohen tried to pull his Borat routine in New York on some unsuspecting American. The intended target didn't quite get the humor and, accordingly, started beating Borat's ass. The pummelling would have lasted indefinitely if it weren't for Dr. House, who managed to diffuse the situation. I can't begin to tell you how much this story amuses me.
  • "Bon Anniversaire." Hilarious.
  • Gotta hand it to the Washington Post for staying ahead of the news cycle. According to this article, Clarendon is turning into a soulless, overcommercialized yuppie haven. Next wek, the Post is going to run an article about how there are a lot of interns on the Hill.
  • This is why I'm smarter than your average Wall Street analyst: this guy needed a "text-book thick Excel model" to go 5-1 in his fantasy football league. I have no proprietary model, and I'm 9-0. So have some. (Can I have a job?)
  • I personally think butterflies are disgusting creatures, but some people are willing to pay $95 for a dozen.
  • I didn't read this article, so I don't know what it's about. I just couldn't get past the headline: "Man who put puppies in trash is given them back."
  • Here's another article from the Post Gazette with a curious headline: "Black Edinboro student sends racist e-mails to blacks." Why is this headline is present tense? Is he still sending these racist e-mails? How about now?
  • I think it's official: O.J. Simpson is reprehensible.
  • In conclusion, my Hoyas are on the cover of Sports Illustrated! Another futile season is in the making.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

While I Was Gone...

Back from a week-long business trip beginning in Kansas City and ending in New York, with a couple of days in Las Vegas sandwiched in between. I returned to DC broke, physically drained, and emotionally spent. But the Steelers won, so I'm in good spirits. And, I got some great links while I was gone (mostly from Doza, as usual):

  • News from my alma mater: A bunch of Georgetown Students have declared themselves a "religious community" to skirt a zoning law that limits the number of unrelated people living in a house to six. I'm not sure whose side I should take here - the puerile, spoiled college student whose rich daddy bought him a $2.4 million house in Georgetown, or the hoity-toity, overdramatic Georgetown residents who say things like "This shameless proposal...could have potentially devastating effect on the quality of life in our neighborhood."
  • More news from my alma mater: Some Georgetown alumni have political aspirations, if you can believe it.
  • Here's a video of a Bank of America employee musically paying tribute to the recent BoA-MBNA merger. They're really drinking the Kool-Aid over at Bank of America, aren't they? My goodness. Something tells me Bono wouldn't approve.
  • My dear friend Jason Simmons - aka Master Roshambollah - was interviewed on NPR Friday in advance of the World Rock Paper Scissors Championship in Toronto this past weekend. Click here to listen to the interview.
  • Here's a video of Aries Spears, who's famous for his spot-on impersonations of various rappers. This is honestly the most amazing thing I've seen since I witnessed the demolition of Three Rivers Stadium in 2001.
  • I did not watch last week's Country Music Awards. And I assume you didn't either. Which is why you need to watch this clip of Faith Hill's reaction when she hears that she lost "Female Vocalist of the Year" to Carrie Underwood.
  • Finally, apropos of last week's stunning Democratic victory, I'd like to close with this picture of Rick Santorum and fam during his concession speech. In the words of my roommate Pgh Girl, "can you tell the kids are homeschooled?"

Monday, November 06, 2006

Last Rites

Well, people, today is my last day off before 2009. (Sidenote: I these freaking computers at the lab in my complex. They remind me of the computers in Harbin Hall circa 1996. At least we have chairs in here...) Anyway, SD is nice and I am eagerly awaiting the arrival of my better half sometime tomorrow. A few points, however:

1) Apparently, peanut butter and jelly is out of season here in San Diego, according to the food lady at Costco. She told me it is only for the summer. I was thinking, "Bitch, it's freaking 80 degrees outside this micky-flick! That's summer in my book!" Alas, I still can't find my pb&j sandwiches from Smuckers. A travesty indeed.

2) Does anybody think this commercial is racist? It's another mud-slinging commercial for the upcoming election. Your thoughts would be appreciated. By the way, Ford would be the first black senator from a southern state since the Reconstruction period!!!!

3) If you haven't heard this rant yet, you have been hiding in a spiderhole with Saddam. MSU v. ND aftermath by a MSU grad who works as a sports radio jockey in Detroit. Classic.

4) Steelers suck. (Sorry, Shades, but they do. I know they won it last year, so hold on to that little treasure).

5) Did anyone else notice Georgetown is pre-season ranked 8th in the country? 8th??? We have not been ranked that high in the pre-season since the Reconstruction period. That means we will have a mediocre year, go to the NIT, and Roy Hibbert will miss a wide-open dunk at the buzzer a la Reese Gibson. Reese, where are you now?

Friday, November 03, 2006

Evangelical Pastor Involved in Gay Relationship With Bad Rapper!

In case you haven't heard: "The Rev Ted Haggard, who is married with five children, stepped down yesterday as head of the 30 million-member National Association of Evangelicals and as senior pastor of the New Life church in Colorado Springs, Colorado, after being accused of paying for sex with a male escort."

Wait, it gets worse: "The allegations against Mr Haggard surfaced this week when Mike Jones told a Denver radio station that the pastor paid him to have sex nearly every month over three years. Mr Jones also said Mr Haggard snorted the drug methamphetamine before their sexual encounters, to heighten his experience." [Emphasis added.]

Mike Jones? You mean, the Mike Jones?!? The hypocrisy! I mean, just earlier this year, Mike Jones was droning on and on about how a few years ago, hoes didn't want him, but now that he's hot, hoes are all on him, etcetera. Turns out, the hoes don't want him now either - probably because he's been involved in a homosexual relationship with a married, evengelical preacher for the past three years. I'm just so fed up with these sanctimonious gangsta rappers.

Shame on you, Mike Jones. You've fallen so far from your pinnacle as Super Bowl hero.