Wednesday, December 31

Putting the "mod" in "moderate consumption"

To be someone must be a wonderful thing.

Wesley Crusher on Scrabble

I've been a bit obsessive about the Scrabble app on Facebook. No quarter is expected, and none is given, even to my lovely wife who identifies all-too-closely with Wil Wheaton.

Aimee Mann's Xmas Carol

Haven't viewed it yet, but it looks to be awesome.

Sunday, December 28

Eartha Kitt is no longer with us

The singer-actress-Catwoman has died at age 81. Read all of the year's obituaries of the great and near great here.

Wednesday, December 24

Monday, December 22

Makin' kraken

This online tool lets you build your own personal squid.

Friday, December 19

Nurse Chapel is no longer with us

Majel Roddenberry, who portrayed the mini-skirted nurse in the original "Star Trek," has died at age 76. She was also the voice of the ship computer.

Thursday, December 18

Review: "Slumdog Millionaire"

If you like "Lost," you will love "Slumdog Millionaire."

The movie shares the conceit as the TV show of various coincidences (or are they?) told in flashback, leading us to the make-or-break moment where love may or may not triumph. In addition, "Slumdog" advocates the idea that streets smarts may be better than book learnin'. It all works especially well thanks to director Danny "Trainspotting" Boyle and a groovy, Mumbai-infused soundtrack.

DULLARD RATING: Rocked! Even the top critics are with us.

Friday, December 12

Dolphins love wearing football helmets

I love the fact that the Miami Dolphins have retained their core identity for their team logo. Nothing says kick-ass football like a dolphin wearing a helmet, even if the team stinks.

This list of uniform changes gone awry in pro sports gets it right. New England fumbled away a perfectly good logo when it got rid of the patriot hiking a football, and Tampa Bay should have kept the pirate with a dagger in his mouth.

Bettie Page is no longer with us

The famed pinup of the 1950s has died at age 85. In her later years, she seemed affably baffled by her success.

Wednesday, December 10

Happy birthday, Doom!

The first-person shooter was released 15 years ago today.

Tuesday, December 9

Monday, December 8

We remember Lennon

John Lennon was shot 28 years ago today. We've discussed this sad anniversary before, so this year, we hand the mic to Howard Cosell.

Wednesday, December 3

This aggression will not stand, man

A New York Times article notes the cool factor of the White Russian, some 10 years after the Dude drank them in "The Big Lebowski."

DULLARD TAKE: Despite several viewings of "Lebowski," I still haven't tried a White Russian. I look forward, however, to a movie that makes white zinfandel cool again. Or maybe rum and Coke. It worked for White Russians...

Thursday, November 27

Tuesday, November 18

Your first Bond?

What was the first Bond movie you saw?

Mine was "The Spy Who Loved Me," which I enjoyed at the Interstate Six Theater. As a 10-year-old, I was spooked by Jaws and smitten with Barbara Bach.

See them in action here.

Friday, November 14

Is your cat trying to kill you?

Or merely biding its time until it ultimately decides to kill you?

Tuesday, November 11

Moore disses the modern Bond

Roger Moore of 007 fame doesn't like the violence in the recent James Bond movies: "My Bond was a lover and a giggler."

DULLARD TAKE: This reminds us to add Moore to the list of people who have been old for as long as we've been alive. Thanks, Roger!

Sunday, November 9

'Opus' is no longer with us

The comic strip comes to an end about five years after its much-hyped debut. Cartoonist Berkeley Breathed indicates that the titular character could live on, however.

DULLARD TAKE: "Bloom County" was great in the 1980s as it positioned itself as "Doonesbury" with an edge. But "Opus" never really worked, and perhaps it's best that the penguin retire once and for all.

Tuesday, November 4

You heard it here last

Obama wins. If you are pleased with this result, cut loose like the Ewoks would.

Famous people who have always been old

Let's face it: Some of us Dullards aren't getting any younger. Yet there are many famous people who have been old for as long as we've been alive.

Here are some of those people. To qualify for the list, each person has to be 1) alive 2) noteworthy 3) commonly perceived as "old" for the past 30-odd years.
  • Bea Arthur, actress
  • Ed Asner, actor
  • Ernest Borgnine, actor
  • Helen Gurley Brown, writer
  • Robert Byrd, senator
  • Dick Cavett, writer and TV personality
  • Walter Cronkite, TV anchor
  • Richard Dawson, game show host
  • Phyllis Diller, comedian
  • Hugh Downs, TV anchor
  • Betty Ford, former First Lady
  • Billy Graham, evangelist
  • Jack Klugman, actor
  • Jack LaLanne, fitness freak
  • Christopher Lee, actor
  • Karl Malden, actor
  • George McGovern, politician
  • Roger Moore, actor
  • Harry Morgan, actor
  • John McCain, politician
  • Ed McMahon, TV sidekick
  • Andy Rooney, commentator
  • Mickey Rooney, actor
  • Daniel Schorr, journalist
  • Margaret Thatcher, former leader of Great Britain
  • Helen Thomas, journalist
  • Abe Vigoda, actor
  • Barbara Walters, TV anchor
  • Betty White, actress
  • John Wooden, basketball coach
  • Bill Wyman, bass player

Monday, November 3

Confidential to cowardly sign thief

Hey Asshat,

I appreciate that you are a supporter of Prop 8, and respect your right to be wrong on that issue. But stealing the No on 8 sign out of my yard is actual suppression of my right to free speech. I assume you are a good Christian who opposes gay marriage on religious grounds -- but I'd like to point out that your own God probably would not want you stealing signs in order to win an election. In fact, I believe He wrote you pretty specific instructions about such behavior. Perhaps you didn't get the original memo, as it was written in stone and doesn't travel easily. But even I, a godless heathen, have been forwarded a copy of it and I suggest you start working on some serious CYA before your next meeting with Him.

That is all.

Friday, October 31

Happy Halloween, Dullards!

A playlist for trick or treating:

— "Boris the Spider," The Who (spooky bass and vocal by the Ox)
— "Monster Mash," Bobby Pickett (just embrace it even if it is overplayed)
— "Ghostbusters," Ray Parker Jr. (you're gonna call Bill Murray, that's who)
— "Bela Lugosi's Dead," Bauhaus (if you go goth, go here)
— "Vampire Girl," Jonathan Richman (antidote to Bauhaus)
— "One of These Days," Pink Floyd (as in "one of these days, I'm going to cut you into little pieces")
— "Scary Monsters," David Bowie (and super creeps)
— "Hell," Squirrel Nut Zippers (get fitted for a suit of flame)
— "I Put A Spell On You," Screamin' Jay Hawkins (stranger than paradise)
— "I Walked With A Zombie," Roky Erickson (undead before undead was cool)
— "Thriller," Michael Jackson (Jacko meets Vincent Price)
— "Werewolves of London," Warren Zevon (and his hair was perfect)

Monday, October 27

Saturday, October 25

Biden kicks ass

Biden gives the smackdown to a biased reporter from Orlando's WFTV:

My brother Scott recently attended a Biden campaign event and came away a big fan. Perhaps he can be cajoled into sharing his observations here?

Wednesday, October 22

Larry David on the election

It's like waiting for results of a biopsy, only worse.

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Spend $150,000 on clothes, like Sarah Palin and the RNC did.


The Times Online has a list of the top off-target Bond moments. It's a lengthy list that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface. I re-watched Diamonds are Forever this past weekend, and man, is that a lousy piece of cinema. Daniel Craig's turn in Casino Royale indicates the producers are on track to let Bond live up to the potential the franchise always showed; but I'll wager that by the third or forth film they'll be back to ridiculous stunts and worse puns.

It's like vampire movies -- they're hardly ever any good, but I just like the concept for some reason, and every once in a while a watchable vamp flick comes along and temporarily renews my faith in the genre.

But, like all genre works, too many hacks enter the field because the tropes of the genre seem obvious enough that it shouldn't take a Hemingway to make a good zombie movie, or Western, or space opera.

Except that it does. Sue Grafton may outsell Dashiell Hammett, but no one's going to be reading her fifty years from now.

More Dullard takes on Bond here and here.

Zima is no longer with us

The "malternative" beverage is no longer in production and will vanish from store shelves by the end of the year — or will it?

Friday, October 17

Spinal Nuge

Interviewer: So, um, are you a sexist person?

The Nuge: I'm very sexy.

Wednesday, October 15

Debate moderators we'd like to see

Lehrer, Ifill, Brokaw and Schieffer. The moderators for the presidential debates in the 2008 campaign have been soporific duds. Here are some moderators we'd like to see:
  • Sarah Silverman
  • Larry David
  • Mindy Kaling (Kelly of TV’s “The Office”)
  • Michael Musto
  • Chris Rock
  • Ali G/Borat/Bruno
  • Michael Stipe
  • David Byrne
  • Spalding Gray (will require resurrection)
  • Sandra Day O’Connor
  • Samuel L. Jackson
  • Richard Simmons
  • Steve Jobs
  • Maureen Dowd
  • Meryl Streep
  • Charlie Kaufman (screenwriter of “Being John Malkovich” fame)
  • John Malkovich
  • Tina Fey
  • Pam Anderson
  • Chris Berman (of ESPN fame)
  • Michael Buffer (of “let’s get ready to rumble” fame)
  • Stephen Hawking
  • David Lee Roth
  • J.K. Rowling
  • Brangelina
  • Salma Hayek
  • Kevin Smith (writer/director of “Clerks” fame)
  • Denzel Washington
  • Padma Lakshmi
  • Joe the Plumber

Nine Most Useless Greatest Hits Albums

Some easy marks here, but if there's one thing Dullards like, it's snarky pop-culture lists.

Kraken finds work

Will, one hopes, devour Elisabeth Hasselbeck.

Tuesday, October 14

All apologies

A headline on CNN's site caught my eye:

Tim McGraw apologizes for album

I'm not familiar with McGraw, but based on what I do know, he could probably have a good reason to do this for every album in his catalog. Here, however, McGraw is telling his fans that he is sorry that his record company put out another "greatest hits" album.

At least McGraw has the integrity to express his regrets. What other bands have reason to apologize for dud albums? Here are some suggestions, based on the idea that these are decent artists who dropped a piece of crap on fans and never said they were sorry for doing so:
  • Republic, New Order
  • Presence, Led Zeppelin
  • Give 'Em Enough Rope, The Clash
  • Give My Regards to Broad Street, Paul McCartney
  • Mighty Like A Rose, Elvis Costello
  • Never Let Me Down, David Bowie
  • Kill Uncle, Morrissey
  • The Spaghetti Incident?, Guns N' Roses
  • A Momentary Lapse of Reason, Pink Floyd
  • Monster, R.E.M.
  • It's Hard, The Who

Tuesday, October 7

Fraud at box office!

Why did the conservative comedy "An American Carol" crater in its opening weekend? Fraud at the box office committed by liberal ushers, of course, as Wonkette tells us.

DULLARD TAKE: There's no conspiracy here. The marketplace has spoken, just as it did with "Battlefield Earth."

Wednesday, October 1


It occurred to me that the McCain campaign really should just bump Palin off the ticket in favor of Tina Fey. Half the country won't even notice; she'll make many fewer idiotic gaffes to the press; and could probably actually do a decent job.

Or even better if Obama replaced Biden with Fey, and Fey could debate Palin, in character, just repeating everything Palin says.

Tuesday, September 30

Pop hit demographics

Do you like graphs? Here are some graphs relating to genre and geography for pop hits since the 50s.

Thursday, September 25

Wednesday, September 24


Here's a really interesting series of posts on Beatle sound-alikes.

Tuesday, September 23


Roger Ebert is a creationist. Whod'a thunk it?

Update: Apparently, some kind of sociological experiment.

Sunday, September 21

Bailing out foreign banks, too?

It takes at least 2 parties to make a bad loan. In the case of these unrealistic mortgages, those 2 parties are your average citizen, probably unable to comprehend a 300+ page legal document, if they even bothered to read half of what they signed; and the banks, run by armies of lawyers and MBAs who drafted those agreements and are paid to know better. The people our taxes are bailing out unless the Dems grew a pair over the weekend) are the MBAs, lawyers, CEO, etc., not the homeowners. And the funny part is, if Phil Gramm (McCain's "unofficial" financial advisor) gets his way, we'll be bailing out foreign banks as well. All the while, John McCain hasn't said boo about all this since declaring our economic fundamentals to be strong.

If you're planning to vote for the Republican ticket to go in and clean up this Republican mess, I really don't want any of what you've been smoking.

I'm not sure it makes sense to bail out US banks for making irresponsible investments. But I'm not a smart man when it comes to money. Supposing there is a benefit to the country to not let our financial institutions collapse -- how does it make sense for me to pay to bail out foreign banks, too?

Friday, September 19

How to make Dullard Chicken

Dullard Chicken, a variation on chicken fingers, is a great dish for grups and kids alike, and it's easy to make. Plus, it's baked, not fried, so it's better for you than a McNugget.

Here's our secret recipe. This serves two adults, and it takes about 30 minutes to prepare.

  • About a pound of boneless chicken breast. Splurge and get the good stuff from Whole Foods. You don't have to justify it.
  • Bread crumbs. We prefer them without high fructose corn syrup.
  • Honey mustard dressing. Ranch will do too, though the honey mustard gives the dish a little bit of tang.
  • Slice the chicken into bite-size strips.
  • Pour some dressing onto a small plate. Do the same with the bread crumbs.
  • Dip each strip into the dressing. Then roll them in the crumbs.
  • Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.
  • Place each strip on a pizza pan, as seen here. Place into the oven and bake for 12 minutes.
  • Add green beans or other colorful vegetable.
  • Cornbread or other bread completes the meal.
  • The chicken is tasty as is, especially if you used honey mustard dressing. You may certainly add ketchup, salsa or another condiment.
  • Wash it down with your favorite red wine.

She just enjoys lying

There's no reason to have to lie to a softball tosser like Sean Hannity. I think she either plain enjoys the physical sensation of lying, or is so used to it she can't help herself any longer.

Thursday, September 18

That's what Michael Scott said

With the season debut of "The Office" just a week away, here's a way to get back into that Dunder Mifflin frame of mind.

Thank goodness for Michael Scott — he took a sophomoric phrase and made it OK to say again, in an ironic kind of way.

Doing that was no easy feat. That's what she said!

Worse than you thought

Sarah Palin may actually be an even worse fundamentalist nutter than you may have first thought, if this Kossack's theory holds true. It seems pretty plausible to me.

I think Palin's views on reproductive rights are SO far outside of the mainstream that the more they are revealed, the less we need to worry about the damage a McCain/Palin administration could do to America and the world.

Of course I usually overestimate the intelligence and decency of the American voter....

Monday, September 15

Rick Wright is no longer with us

The Pink Floyd keyboardist has died of cancer age 65. So it goes.

This NPR appreciation describes Wright's role in the band pretty well.

Thursday, September 11

Cressbeckler-Gershon '08

Here's our dream ticket for the White House. What do we have to do to get these two to run together?

The Onion offers Joad Cressbeckler for president:

Old, Grizzled Third-Party Candidate May Steal Support From McCain

Gina Gershon offers herself as Sarah Palin for vice president:

Monday, September 8

A king dethroned

The "I'm a Mac and I'm a PC" campaign from Apple made a splash and then became a bit pedestrian. Now it's on the upswing again. This is one of the latest ones. See 'em all here.

Saturday, September 6

Happy birthday, Roger Waters!

The former Pink Floyd bass player and songwriter turns 65 today. As reported here by the BBC, he owes it all to his mum.

FLASHBACK: A Dullard review of a Waters show from 2006.

The 9-11 Tribute at the RNC — And Olbermann's Reaction

Wrong on so many levels. I'm surprised this RNC 9/11 snuff film hasn't generated more outrage.

Friday, September 5

Here, have some awesome.

Bill Zeman's 3-year-old daughter critiques his drawrings.

McCain's divine inspiration?

A day after John McCain's convention speech, the world wants to know: What was the deal with the seemingly random images on the big screen behind him? Perhaps the inspiration for this atypical bit of stagecraft was this scene from "True Stories," the David Byrne movie released in 1986.

Thursday, September 4

Monday, September 1

Choices, choices....

Here's a thought-provoking article from Ann Friedman and the notion of choice in this election.

I love John Sidney McCain so much for choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate. He never had a shot, but at least now, things are gonna get really weird. At least until Palin withdraws from the race later this week to concentrate on her family. Then maybe we get Mittens back!


Flight of the Conchords to end after 2nd season.

Lazy bastards.

Friday, August 29

Well, that was quick Surprisingly safe for work.

Wednesday, August 27

Woody Allen is still funny

At least on paper. Haven't seen his new flick yet.

For that matter, Scoop has been sitting idly on our TiVo box for a couple months now.

Tuesday, August 26

Three noteworthy songs with substitute drummers

Not all drummers sound the same. Like any accomplished musician, they develop their own style. Contrast John Bonham and Keith Moon, for example: two drummers with a signature sound, each successful in his own way.

Sometimes, however, even the serious fan may not realize who is behind the drum kit. Here are three noteworthy tracks where substitute drummers were used. Can you hear the difference?

Artist: Pink Floyd
Track: "Mother"
Regular drummer: Nick Mason
Substitute drummer: Jeff Porcaro of Toto
Reason for substitution: Mason couldn't get the part right, so session drummer Porcaro was brought in.
Analysis: The folky song lacks percussion until the guitar solo. From there, Porcaro does an admirable job of pushing along the second half of "Mother," one of the best songs on "The Wall."

Artist: The Rolling Stones
Track: "You Can't Always Get What You Want"
Regular drummer: Charlie Watts
Substitute drummer: Jimmy Miller, producer
Reason for substitution: Same problem Mason had: Watts couldn't get the timing down.
Analysis: Miller fills in perfectly for Watts, no small feat considering he was stepping in for one of the great drummers in rock history.

Artist: The Beatles
Track: "The Ballad of John and Yoko"
Regular drummer: Ringo Starr
Substitute drummer: Paul McCartney
Reason for substitution: John Lennon was in a hurry to record the song, and Starr was away, working on a movie.
Analysis: The simplicity of "Ballad" matches McCartney's skills. He does OK, but his performance doesn't sound quite like Ringo.

Monday, August 25

Does the new business of music change the way music sounds?

One blogger says yes. All I can add to this from personal experience is that the rise of relatively affordable home studios over the last decade is the most significant change to the production of records. I clearly know next to nothing about the distribution and promotion of records, as evidenced by the 500 copies of "Better Now" wasting space aging like fine wine in my closet. But this next Ghost Town record sounds as professional as most of the CDs in my collection, at an estimated investment of about $40,000 in studio costs.

The nice thing? The next one's free. :)

Sunday, August 24

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Get drunk with Brits while they visit the islands of Greece.

Wednesday, August 20

There's no escape from the music in the whole damn street

The accordion is back. Some Dullards might say it never went away.

Monday, August 18

Olympics & Citizenship

With so many atheletes crossing borders to play for other countries, and with USA basketball fielding all-star teams, the Olympics just ain't the same as when i was a kid. I got nothin' deeper than that to say, though someone smarter than me could draw this out into a discussion of what citizenship and nationalism are coming to mean in a trans-national-corporation-run world.

Sunday, August 17

This Bud's for you — with tomato

I ran across this beer on the shelves of my local grocer the other day. It's a mix of Budweiser and Clamato — two great tastes that go great together, right?

The brew, sold in the convenient 24-ounce can, was apparently introduced last year. The reviews are not kind. I won't be trying it, but then again, I am probably not a part of the target audience.

(Image courtesy of Creative Commons.)

Monday, August 11

Olympic sports we'd like to see

As noted in the highly scientific survey on this blog, the Dullard community is reacting with a collective shrug to the Summer Olympics. What could the Games do to get our attention? How about adding these events:

Marco Polo: What better pool event for the Olympics than the internationally flavored Marco Polo? It would be more action-packed than synchronized diving, and we'd love to hear "fish out of water!" in Chinese, French or English (the official languages of the current Olympics).

Miniature golf: Traditional golf is a pretty dull thing to watch. Miniature golf, on the other hand, is fun for athlete and spectator alike. As an Olympic competition, the course would be designed and decorated to reflect the culture and history of the host country.

Dead man's float: Most swimming events are too difficult to be accessible to the average person. (Can you do the butterfly?) Anyone can do the dead man's float — but who can do it the longest? To up the ante, the pool for this competition will be infested with sharks with freakin' laser beams.

What other games can be added to spice up the Olympics?

Sunday, August 10

Chef is no longer with us

Isaac Hayes, noted musician, "South Park" voice and Scientologist, is dead at age 65. So it goes.

Friday, August 8

Eat to the beet

Beets taste good. And they are good for you.

Here's how to roast them. Don't forget the seasoning, ya donkey!

Monday, August 4

Out of the box

A friend points us to Pandora, a music site that offers what it calls "radio from the Music Genome Project." It's a little hard to explain how it works, but it's worth a look — and a listen.

Thursday, July 31

Weird scenes from midtown Manhattan

A spooky bunny fountain that sprays water from its eyes.

Possible explanation here.

Wednesday, July 30

Happy birthday, Kate Bush!

The British songstress, presumably still running up that hill to make a deal with God, turns 50 today. The BBC marks the occasion with this article and slideshow.

Tuesday, July 29

Byrne-Eno reunite

A new album by David Byrne and Brian Eno is coming out soon, their first get-together since "My Life In the Bush of Ghosts" from 27 years ago. A Byrne tour, featuring his work with Eno, will follow.

The Guardian tells us more, and you can sign up for a free tune at the official site of the collaboration. Or just watch the video from the man himself.

Monday, July 28

Shaq loves Mac

A Facebook friend who lives in Orlando reports:

"The Shaq himself is shopping around in the Millenia Mall Apple store. He came out from behind the Genius Bar and is kinda hard to miss."

Can you dig it?

Sunday, July 27

Not enough believers

The new "X-Files" movie has apparently cratered, bringing in a meager $10 million on its opening weekend in the U.S. The reviews ain't great either.

Maybe Chris Carter shouldn't have bothered. At least we tried to warn him.

UPDATE: Week 2 was no kinder at the box office. Sculder pulled in just over $3 million. "Space Chimps" actually had a better per-screen average.

Friday, July 25

Wotta douchenozzle

Former gameshow host, failed actor, and Nixon apologist Ben Stein hops on the GOP talking points train by trying to get you to associate Obama with Hitler this week, rather than with JFK.

I'm not saying that as a Jew, Ben Stein of all people should think twice before trivializing the horrors committed by the Nazi regime in order to score a few cheap political points. I'm just saying that as an alleged human being, he needs to be served a hot steaming cup of STFU and never darken our national political discourse again.

The Dark Kannnnnniggit


That Joker was freakier 'n hell.



The balcony is closed. Roger Ebert offers a nice reminiscence.

Friday, July 18

Sing and drive

In the early days of music video, driving around Los Angeles was visually sufficient to be on TV. Here's a look at three videos that do just that:

"There Must Be Some Misunderstanding"
ARTIST: Genesis

WHAT IS THE PLOT? Sad-sack Phil Collins wants to make up with his special lady, who has moved on.

IS THE CAR AN OLD CONVERTIBLE? Yes, with Collins at the wheel. The other two band members ride in the back of an old pickup truck.

DO THEY STOP ALONG THE WAY? Yes, at a vacant drive-in movie.

HOW DOES THE VIDEO BETRAY ITS AGE? Collins uses a phone booth. He also has hair on his head and a scratchy-looking beard.

WHAT L.A. LANDMARKS CAN BE SEEN? Capitol Records Building, Hollywood Boulevard, Grauman's Chinese Theater.

HOW DOES IT END? The band plays morosely with the Hollywood hills as a backdrop.


SONG: "Our Lips Are Sealed"
ARTIST: The Go-Gos

WHAT IS THE PLOT? Fun-loving gals cruise the city.

IS THE CAR AN OLD CONVERTIBLE? Yes, with lead singer Belinda Carlisle at the wheel.

DO THEY STOP ALONG THE WAY? Yes, at a lingerie shop.

HOW DOES THE VIDEO BETRAY ITS AGE? Carlisle hadn't had any work done yet.


HOW DOES IT END? The gals frolic in a fountain, a scene that makes up for lack of other identifiable L.A. scenery.


SONG: "I Love L.A."
ARTIST: Randy Newman

WHAT IS THE PLOT? Ironic singer cruises the city with a "big nasty redhead" at his side.

IS THE CAR AN OLD CONVERTIBLE? Yes, with Newman at the wheel.

DO THEY STOP ALONG THE WAY? Yes, so Newman can dance with the nasty redhead.

HOW DOES THE VIDEO BETRAY ITS AGE? The nasty redhead's sunglasses; the presence of members of Toto.

Too many to mention; some (Disneyland and the Santa Monica Pier) go beyond the city limits.

Newman sticks out his tongue, furthering the debate about the sincerity of this song.


Salma Hayek is available again

The actress has broken up with the billionaire boyfriend who sired her child.

Thursday, July 17

Sean Tevis wants 9 bucks

He's running for state rep in Kansas, which won't directly affect the three readers of this blog. But it was worth 9 bucks to me to help prop up a challenger who seems to get it. Take a look, it's an amusing campaign at least.

That Obama

He sure talks good.

It'll be nice to have a smart feller in the White House again.

Now that's peculiar.

Zach, Tim and Eric in (nominally) an ad for a Vodka distillery:

Find more videos like this on aspecialthing

Tuesday, July 15

Sign 'o the Times

Pedal-by shooting in South Los Angeles.

Sarah Silverman is available again

The foul-mouthed comedian has broken up with Jimmy Kimmel of "Man Show" fame. Who will dare to ask her out next?

Sunday, July 13

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Moon a passing train in Southern California. Just don't get too crazy, or John Law will come down on you.

Wednesday, July 9

The very staid and proper New Yorker

Has a fairly ribald comics blog, this week featuring ascotted gadabout Chris Onstad of Achewood fame.

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Scale the New York Times building, like at least three guys have done in recent months.

Possible downsides:

— Getting arrested.
— Plummeting to your death.

Wednesday, July 2

So it went

Improbably, Kurt Vonnegut has a new book out. Newsweek has an excerpt.

Graydon Carter hates Christopher Hitchens

Boy, did he get punk'd....

We've got you covered

As detailed here and mentioned elsewhere on this blog, we Dullards love to talk about covers of songs. Here's more fodder for that ongoing conversation, with a Canadian twist:
  • The CBC lists the best, worst and weirdest covers of songs written by Canadians. Nirvana's version of "Seasons in the Sun" is mentioned.
  • Canadian rocker Neil Young offers "A Day in the Life" before a somewhat bemused audience in Spain. He uses his famous feedback to fill in the orchestral sections.

Tuesday, July 1

One more reason... vote for Obama. Change we can believe in!

Thursday, June 26

Wig out

Wigs for cats. Who woulda thunk?

Monday, June 23

Food of the 1970s

What did you eat in the 1970s, assuming you were alive and eating solid foods then? Here's a day in the typical '70s diet, as recalled by Dullard bloggers. Looking back, it's remarkable that we thrived.

Carnation Instant Breakfast
Count Chocula (or Life if you're on a health food kick)

Chef Boyardee spaghetti
Fruit cup
Hawaiian Punch

Hostess cupcake
Pop Rocks
Teem soda

Tuna casserole
French-cut Del Monte green beans
Tapioca pudding
Nestea instant iced tea

Hamburger Helper
Beef stroganoff
Liver and onions
Fondue (for swingin' grownups after the kids are in bed)

Sunday, June 22

George Carlin is no longer with us

The profane funnyman is dead at age 71. So it goes.

Read about the "seven dirty words." It's how he'd like to be remembered.

Saturday, June 14

Save the spin room!

The McCain campaign has proposed a series of "town hall" meetings with Barack Obama. The details are yet to be worked out, but they probably will be.

McCain says he doesn't want a "spin room" at these events. (That's the place where campaign minions offer their views to the media on how each candidate did.) We at the Gazette say the opposite: save the spin room, if only so Triumph the Insult Comic Dog can reprise his hilarious visit there.

Monday, June 9

Pour a true pint

Some establishments are cutting corners by thickening the bottom of pint glasses, resulting in less beer in the container and less in your belly.

This is just wrong.

Friday, June 6

Want to bum somebody out?

Send them this picture. Do not click on that link yourself. It will only bum you out.

Monday, June 2

Q&A with Hans Zimmer

The soundtrack specialist discusses "Batman" and how he was influenced by the Damned.

Thursday, May 29

Alexander Courage is no longer with us

The man who wrote the original "Star Trek" theme is dead at age 88. So it goes.

Did you know that the memorable theme had lyrics? It did — kind of.

I, for one...

...welcome our monkey-cyborg overlords.

Anthony Bourdain blogs about Top Chef

Worth a read if you're following Top Chef.

Tuesday, May 27

Earle Hagen is no longer with us

The man who wrote the "Andy Griffith" theme and a host of others has died at age 88. So it goes.

Wednesday, May 21

China outsourcing to the US

If we just step up our torture infrastructure, maybe we can turn this whole economy thing around....

Is there no end to Tom's talents?

Is he a great interviewer, or a great interviewee? It's hard to tell.

Tuesday, May 20

He's a rainbow — a scary rainbow

Remember the guy who used to show up at high-profile sporting events, wearing a rainbow wig? He's behind bars now.

Key quote: "No one can meet my standards."

Tuesday, May 13

Yeah, no.

Da Plane!

Urgh. Just got back from the dentist, where I had my second planing and scraping in a week. It's about as fun as it sounds. With all the grinding, whirring and gurgling of the various electro-mechanical tools and suction tubes in your mouth, it feels like being French-kissed by an evil robot from outer space shortly before it beheads you in front of your family and neighbors to make an example of you. Sort of.

Anyway, be sure to floss, kids!

Thursday, May 8

The Iron Dude

I caught "Iron Man" last night with some friends. It's a serviceable summer action movie, powered by Robert Downey Jr. He exceeds expectations portraying a war profiteer turned superhero.

Jeff Bridges plays the villain, a fellow war profiteer who stays that way at all costs. Even though Bridges has a shaved head and wears slick suits, his voice still betrays him as The Dude from "The Big Lebowski."

It's only a matter of time before someone grafts some "Lebowski" dialog on top of Bridges' scenes in "Iron Man," just as people have done with James Earl Jones and the "Star Wars" movies.

Wednesday, May 7

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Hit 48 states in 120 hours, like these dudes are trying to do.

Saturday, May 3

Friday, May 2

Two indicators that I am old

Two moments from today that indicate that I am old:

1. When I overheard this in a conversation between a bagger and cashier at Trader Joe's: "I was in middle school the first time Bush ran for president."

2. When I was watching U2 perform "Sunday Bloody Sunday" in their IMAX concert movie and realized that this was almost as good as the time I saw them at the jai-alai fronton — in 1983.

Tuesday, April 29

Music news

  • Roger Waters, playing the Coachella festival, endorses Barack Obama.
  • Lou Reed makes an honest woman out of Laurie Anderson.
  • Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Jack White pose for the cover of the Rolling Stone.

Thursday, April 24

Another Musical Endurance Test

See how much of this Beatles medley you can get through. Should be easy, right? Everyone loves the Beatles! The catch: performed by Cher, Tina Turner, and Kate Smith.

Wednesday, April 23

Monster Attacks!

But Blue Jeans Cable strikes back.

Scarlett Johansson - Listening Party

ATCO is streaming six cuts off her Tom Waits tribute record. They're more, um, not good than I thought they'd be.

If you're desperate for a Tom Waits covers record, the Holly Cole or John Hammond ones are pretty good.

Tuesday, April 22

Thursday, April 17

Vista isn't boss

This sort of thing does not help Microsoft's image of being laughably out of touch. It seems unlikely that any human has yet uttered the sentence, "Vista, gotta get me some."

No wonder some people are trying to save XP. Or they could just switch to Mac...

Tuesday, April 15

Up and Then Down

Perhaps the most interesting article about elevators you will ever read. Don't miss the oddly soothing time-lapse video of a man trapped in an elevator for two days.

Sunday, April 13

Weird funky yanking

This recent "Funky Winkerbean" offers some unpleasant imagery with its "just yanking ya" punchline. What is Tom Batiuk thinking?

Then again, we've asked similar questions before.

Tuesday, April 8

Colbert grills R.E.M.

Check out this interview that mentions Ratt, GM and a codpiece.

Monday, April 7

Darwin vs. Fish

What the hell is wrong with you people? In what way is evolution anti-religious? Evolution, archeology, astronomy, physics, et al, are not anti-religion when they encompass views that contradict the bible, the torah, or the koran. They are outside religion. Nothing to do with religion whatsoever.

If your belief system can't cope with the world of fact as we can best determine it, than either change your beliefs, or accept that you have a belief system not based on fact, Which I think is the whole point of religion, isn't it? If you were looking for science to confirm everything in your holy books, you wouldn't really have any faith. You'd just have textbooks.

If religion has any value (and I'm not saying it does or doesn't) it surely exists outside the mundane world of facts. If you can reconcile: a faith that stresses personal responsibility for sin, possibly even those committed before you were born; the enormous spectrum of human misery and soft-jazz saxophonists; and an all-powerful, all-knowing creator then surely you can adapt to the idea of evolution being part of God's Great Plan.

Along with all those dinosaur fossils He hid in the ground to test your faith.

Fair Liz

Uber-MILF (and NYT book-reviewer) Liz Phair is releasing a deluxe version of her 1993 debut, "Exile in Guyville," and I'll probably buy the damn thing again. Only partly due to the picture in the linked Billboard article.

Sunday, April 6

Charlton Heston is no longer with us

Dead at 84, even as his famous lines live on. So it goes.

Nova declined comment.

Wednesday, April 2

Common errors in English

I'm willing to give up my disapproval of the pronounced "e" in "forte" if my lovely wife will concede that "different than" is just plain wrong. See more Common Errors in English from a Washington State perfessor.

R.I.P., someday

Jack Handey writes his own eulogy for the New Yorker.

Monday, March 31

Somebody does it better

Radiohead tries a Bond theme. I like the original Carly Simon version too, as seen here with the opening credits of "The Spy Who Loved Me."

Friday, March 28

Mission accomplished in Kuwait — now let's go

In this column about John McCain and the possibility that U.S. troops may remain in Iraq for 100 years, Charles Krauthammer asks: "The U.S. (with allies) occupied Kuwait in 1991 and has remained there with a major military presence for 17 years. I’ve yet to hear any serious person of either party call for a pullout from Kuwait."

Well, if no "serious person" will do that, I will. The United States should not have troops in Kuwait. Here's why:
  • Kuwait is not threatened by its neighbors, nor a threat to attack anyone else. The only reason U.S. forces came to be in Kuwait was the first Gulf War. They stayed when it was over because Saddam Hussein, who had invaded Kuwait in 1990, stayed in power. Saddam is gone now — in fact, he's dead. The other country that borders Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, is not likely to launch an invasion anytime soon.
  • Kuwait has plenty of resources to pay for its own military. It's one of the richest countries in the world thanks to its oil industry. It doesn't need our charity and can pay to protect itself.
  • Kuwait is marginal as a democracy. It's better than many of the countries in the region on human rights, but that's not saying much. Women did not get the right to vote until 2005. People are sent to jail for not following a dress code. Kuwait has been cited by the State Department for not doing enough to stop human trafficking.
So Kuwait is not threatened or a threat. It can fend for itself. It doesn't share our values. So why do our troops stay there, and for how much longer?

On a related note, some people are finally getting around to determining the financial cost of the Iraq war. At as much as $5,000 per second, it's not cheap.

Wednesday, March 26

So much younger then

With the new R.E.M. disc "Accelerate" getting praised and panned, perhaps it's best to move ahead cautiously on the band's future.

To see whether you like the stripped-down sound, take a listen to the band's recent show from SXSW. Read this article to see whether Stipe, Mills and Buck are really at peace with the retirement of drummer Bill Berry.

Alternatively, just relive the old days by watching the video above.

Sunday, March 23

Happy Easter to all my peeps

The Washington Post contest for peep dioramas is worth a look. Inspirations include the Coen brothers, Larry Craig, the Beatles and SpongeBob Squarepants.

Friday, March 21

Soothing the itch of the savage kraken

I love Japan.

A stench in the land of the mouse

The Orlando airport reeks of dead rats.

Thursday, March 20

All you'd want to know...

...about rechargeable batteries

Dan Kennedy on the record biz

The A.V. Club interviews Dan Kennedy, author of "Rock On: An Office Power Ballad," which is really quite good if you like that sort of thing.

AVC: So what's different about the modern industry that's triggered its supposed decline?

DK: Apparently at some point, the record business turned into some 45-year-old white guy with a law degree and a masters in marketing, who has a tan in the middle of winter and three houses, and he calls music "units." Somewhere, something got lost.

Wednesday, March 19

Hef, Twisted Sister back Barack Obama

Just when you thought the pastor was trouble enough: Now the guitarist for Twisted Sister wants to rock with Barack Obama, and Playboy kingpin Hugh Hefner favors him too.

Speaking of pastors, I would love to know more about what the pastors of Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter have said in the past. They do go to church every week, don't they?

Best automobile (non-)review evar.

Jeremy Clarkson briefly mentions the Renault Laguna Sport Tourer Dynamique

Tuesday, March 18

Arthur C. Clarke is no longer with us

Somehow fittingly, the famed sci-fi scribe lives to see 2001, but not 2010. So it goes.

Sunday, March 16

LISTS: Weirdest search terms used to find this blog

Of the roughly 67 visitors this blog has each day, the majority arrive via Google searches, with Google Images leading the way.

We thank our faithful readers who come here for the written words and carefully selected links accompanied by the occasional illustration. We do it all for you. For the rest of you, thanks for visiting anyway.

With those pop-in visitors in mind, we offer (in "Countdown" style) the top 5 weirdest search terms that people used to get here recently:

5. Mayberry reality

4. Tentacled sea creature

3. Woman suckles pet monkey movie

2. Survivors nude

1. Nude elves

We hope you all found what you were looking for. (Related posts here and here.)

Wednesday, March 12

Whither Vitter?

Eliot Spitzer, the governor of New York, has resigned roughly 48 hours after he was named in a prostitution scandal. David Vitter, a U.S. senator from Louisiana, remains in office nine months after his name surfaced in a similar scandal.

Why the difference? Just askin'.

Friday, March 7

Possible Dullard Feat of Strength

Visit the Beer Can House in Houston, Texas.

Curb her enthusiasm

Larry David on Hillary Clinton.

Tuesday, March 4

Gary Gygax is no longer with us

The founder of D&D runs out of hit points at age 69. So it goes.

UPDATE: A good Gygax remembrance.

Travis Pastrana, a man who needs more trust issues

I have a lot of great friends, but I wouldn't even trust my wife to save my ass after jumping out of a plane with no parachute.

Monday, March 3

Wiki-dump and eBay revenge

What do you do when your kinda-boyfriend ends it through Wikipedia? Use eBay to sell the stuff he left in your apartment.

That is apparently what took place in the short-lived relationship between Wikipedia co-founder Jimbo Wales and Rachel Marsden, a Coulter-esque pundit who once had to be escorted from the Fox News studios for erratic behavior. Read it all here.

Thursday, February 28


Over 1% of US adult population is currently in prison. That's nuts. I'm assuming that's largely due to the War on (Poor People's) Drugs. If you're a black man between the ages of 20 and 34, that number is closer to a staggering 11%.

Feh. Home of the Free, my foot.

Mallard '08

Today's "Mallard Fillmore" floats the idea of the titular character seeking the Republican nomination for president. It's hard to tell which is creepier: the idea of our nation being led by a right-wing duck or Bruce Tinsley's rendering of his own fingertips in the strip's second panel.

For more "Fillmore" analysis, check out the Duck and Cover blog.

Sunday, February 24

R.E.M. channels Fountains of Wayne

"Supernatural Superserious" is the song released ahead of R.E.M.'s next album, "Accelerate." Hear the track at the band's main site, or watch one of several videos for it.

DULLARD TAKE: It's a decent enough attempt to get back to basics, with a Fountains of Wayne feel. Whether the approach will work over an entire album remains to be seen.

Friday, February 22

Sunday, February 17

Music for films

Picking the best movie soundtrack was the focus on a recent broadcast of the public radio program "Sound Opinions." The show's hosts and guests liked "Rushmore," "The Harder They Come" and "Amelie," among others. (They were less excited about "Juno.")

Here are some of my favorite soundtracks. First, here are two rules: I have to own the soundtrack, and I am disqualifying concert films ("Stop Making Sense") and music documentaries ("The Kids Are Alright"). With that out of the way, here we go:
  • "Apollo" — Brian Eno sends us to the moon
  • "Being John Malkovich" — Two Bjork tracks plus Carter Burwell's best work equal genius
  • "Blade Runner" — Vangelis (!) wrote things that you people wouldn't believe
  • "Brazil" — alternately manic and beautiful; opening is still used in trailers for other movies
  • "City of Lost Children" — before "Amelie," gloomy symphonies for this Jeunet & Caro film
  • "Desperado" — the swagger matches the titular character; Salma Hayek (oof!) sings sweetly
  • "Married to the Mob" — from New Order to the Feelies, a fun sampler from the late '80s
  • "Monsoon Wedding" — romantic representation of India past and present
  • "Powaqqatsi" — Philip Glass and world music go together better than you might think
  • "Return to Waterloo" — Ray Davies in fine form; still need to watch the movie
  • "Say Anything" — throwaway tracks redeemed by Peter Gabriel and the Replacements
  • "Taxi Driver" — pulsates like the blood boiling in Travis Bickle's brain
  • "Trainspotting" — grooves that make it easier to plunge into the filthiest toilet in Scotland

Friday, February 15

Team America vs. Elvis

Although "Team America: World Police" is an uneven movie, I admired that it used the marionette as a tool of satire. It was audacious to merge the politics and pop culture of today with an antiquated form of entertainment. And it felt totally original.

Well, maybe not. I recently stumbled over this music video for the Dire Straits song "Calling Elvis." It includes the same puppet ploy, and it was released in 1991, a dozen years before "Team America" came out.

I'm not accusing Matt Stone and Trey Parker of stealing the idea for their movie from Mark Knopfler. (Their inspiration was apparently the 1960s TV show "Thunderbirds.") But it does take some of the edge off of "Team America."

Which dog?

that dog.

Thursday, February 14

Monday, February 11

Happy Birthday, Thomas Alva Edison

Today, you're 160 years young! In your honor, here are some fascinating facts about you from the fine folks at Neatorama.

Saturday, February 9

Endgame for Ron Paul

The Ron Paul campaign is dying, pretty much as we foretold. So it goes.

In a "playing for pride" statement, the haggard obstetrician recently told his followers that he wants to go on with his presidential campaign, but he warned them that he must also fend off a challenge for his House seat. Even the Ron Paul blimp has been grounded for lack of sponsors.

We'll still have the moment when the Paul fans pursued Sean Hannity through the icy avenues of New Hampshire. Ah, those were good times.

Friday, February 8

More Scientology caught on tape

Scientology leader David Miscavige outlines his organization's strange vision in this 8-minute clip. Psychiatry is targeted, complete with explosive imagery. There's also Operation Planetary Calm, a Scientology propaganda effort around the world.

Related post here.

Thursday, February 7

Wednesday, February 6

The cable's out

A massive Internet outage is traced to cable cuts in the Mediterranean. Whodunnit?

UPDATE: The official word now is that an abandoned anchor is to blame.

Friday, February 1

Why we need Barack Obama

Yeah, what he said.

Of replicants and outsourcing

So I finally got to see "Blade Runner" on the big screen recently. It largely reaffirmed my faith in its greatness. Even the things that bother me (Deckard's manhandling of Rachel, the failure to clarify why Roy sticks a nail in his hand, etc.) reinforce my belief that the best things in life are those with little flaws.

On this viewing, one other thing struck me: The movie has a subtle anti-outsourcing message, whether it meant to or not. The replicants are able to cause trouble through people not working at the Tyrell Corporation but who do replicant-related design. It's not entirely clear whether Chew and J.F. Sebastian were free-lancers or Tyrell employees simply working from home. But if Tyrell had kept that work in-house, the company would not have created the security breach that eventually allows Roy Baty to meet his maker.

Wednesday, January 30

Today's weirdness

Found via the Coilhouse blog, which has an important story up if you're considering travel to Dubai.

"Is this testing whether I'm a Replicant or a drunkard, Mr. Deckard?"

Sean Young to rehab.

Related post.

When the first lady smiles

Hillary Clinton is apparently tapping into the musical power of Golden Earring. Her campaign is using "When the Lady Smiles," a 1984 song by the Dutch rockers.

The choice is raising eyebrows because of the song's lyrics and weird video. It's a mix of sex and violence with a bit of "rock stars are crazy" thrown in.

Sunday, January 27

Thursday, January 24

D-Kuce is done

Dennis Kucinich has withdrawn from the presidential campaign. He won't endorse anyone else in the Democratic race.

His wife will comfort him.

Wednesday, January 23

Sushi: Now with extra mercury!

Great. Why does every day lately seem to bring a brand new ballpunch? NY Times Tests find hazardous levels of mercury in tuna sushi in New York restaurants. Likely to be similar problems with all bluefin tuna, worldwide.


I enjoy my Mac desktop and laptop, and I can't imagine going back to the world of Windows. The people in this documentary, however, are bit extreme for me. Then again, it is perhaps telling that Windows has no parallel community who worship Vista or Bill Gates.

I do like the woman who says, "I have never knowingly slept with a Windows user. Ever. That would never ever happen."

Tuesday, January 22

Heath Ledger is no longer with us

Dead in Manhattan at age 28. So it goes.

His appearance as the Joker in the next Batman movie is now spooky in its similarity to Brandon Lee in "The Crow," as noted in comments here.

Monday, January 21

John Stewart is no longer with us

John Stewart has died at age 68. So it goes.

This is the John Stewart who wrote "Daydream Believer" and "Gold," which I thought was a cool song when I was 12.

Happy MLK Day, Dullards!

Refresh your knowledge about the man, or take this hint from "Hi and Lois" and just sleep in.

Monday, January 14


Your friends and neighbors -- the top 100 wacky Fundamentalist internet postings.

Cruising with El Ron

"We are the authorities on the mind." — Tom Cruise.

More about the actor's thoughts on Scientology in this clip. He has a scary laugh.

UPDATE: The clip keeps getting pulled and then put up somewhere else. At the moment, it's available on Gawker, which says it plans to keep it there.

FURTHER UPDATE: Scientology deploys its lawyers.

Freedom of speech?

Not around the Constitution, please.

Saturday, January 12

One of the world's great gourmands is no longer with us

Bozo Miller, a record-setting eater (or "trencherman," as the Guiness Book called him), is dead at age 89. So it goes. Key quote: "His hobby was getting people drunk."

Thursday, January 10

Orlando's tacky side

All you Dullards who have connections to Central Florida will likely enjoy A Guide To All Things Tacky Fabulous in Orlando. There's even a post about the World's Largest Board, which has apparently lost its title but still exists for all to behold.

Here are some tacky landmarks yet to be mentioned from past and present:

Tuesday, January 8

Campaign roundup

— Larry David goes to work for Barack Obama. Kind of.

— Ron Paul supporters clash with Bill Clinton and pursue Sean Hannity through the icy streets of New Hampshire.

— We could see a record turnout in New Hampshire.

Friday, January 4

RIP, Andy Olmsted

Andy Olmsted was a soldier and blogger killed in action in Iraq this week. He left behind a final post to be published in the event of his death, and it merits reading.

After the caucus

Iowa's moment in the political spotlight is over for another four years. Here are some items of note:

  • Rudy Giuliani didn't put much time or money into Iowa, so he's not concerned about his feeble showing there. "None of this worries me — Sept. 11, there were times I was worried," he says.
  • Ron Paul followers are giddy about how their man drew 10 percent of the vote, seemingly oblivious to the fact that 9 out of 10 Republicans rejected his candidacy.
  • John Edwards made a compelling case for why he'd be a good Secretary of Labor in the Obama administration. And Joe Biden might be good for the State Department.
  • Mike Huckabee talked a lot about the need for change. Change? He's a Republican and so is the incumbent. Is Huckabee running against Bush?
  • Hillary Clinton talked a lot about change too. But she's running against herself in doing so.
  • Whither Kucinich?

Kinks reunion

I'll believe it when I see it, but I'm totally there.

Is waterboarding torture?

I'll go with "Yup." A Straight Dope Message Board regular waterboards himself and describes the experience.

Thursday, January 3

Whisper to a scream

Hard to believe it's already been four years since this moment...

Wednesday, January 2


The next Batman movie is going to rock, if this trailer is any indication.