Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Two More Saved By The Bell Inconsistencies

About a month ago, I wrote a brilliant tome about inconsistencies in the world of Saved By The Bell, particularly regarding the mysteries of the Good Morning Miss Bliss era. TBS is currently running the GMMB episodes, and I noticed a couple more inconsistencies while watching the episode about the bully new kid Deke (or Deek, as he sometimes spells it -- illiterate moron). Anyway, I should have noted this before, but the layout of JFK Junior High in Indianapolis, Indiana is nearly identical to the layout of Bayside High School in Palisades, California (aside from the principal's office, which is far more spacious at JFK). Also, when Zack and Screech are discussing the fact that Deke will probably beat Screech to death, it is mentioned that Screech has a brother and a sister (who, hilariously, would be happy when their brother gets his skull fractured and dies from a brain hemorrhage because they would then each get their own room). In the Bayside era, Screech has no siblings -- only a self-aware robot named Kevin.

That is all for now. Rest assured, if I see more inconsistencies, I will let you know.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Sexy Senior Photos

Senior photos are an interesting phenomenon. Thankfully for me (and my then-acne-filled forehead and chin), getting "senior pictures" wasn't a thing in my high school. You just got your one senior photo for the yearbook, and that was it. Thankfully for all of us, there are many other high schools in this great land of ours where getting senior pictures is a simple and awkward part of senior year. Check out Sexy Senior Photos. It's not the only "senior photo" website out there, but pretty much any website poking fun at ridiculous senior pictures is worth your time. Some of these are hysterical. In what world is it okay to take a senior picture with your shirt off? New Jersey, I'm guessing.

Thanks to the Floppy Burrito for sending me the link.

(No Tuesday Top Ten today. My car hit a water buffalo.)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Shit I Hate: People Who Drive Range Rovers

What this picture fails to show is the pedestrian jumping out of the way as the driver honks and throws his arms up, even though the light's red.

Is there any vehicle that screams "I'm a self-important asshole" louder than a Range Rover? In a world full of cars that instill an unearned sense of self-entitlement, the Range Rover is king. Thankfully, I don't know anyone who drives a Range Rover, unless knowledge is somehow defined by being nearly plowed over as I cross the street after a Range Rover blows through a stop sign and the driver, without removing the cell phone from her ear, scowls at me for having the gall to be less affluent than her.

If you drive a Range Rover, here are some things you believe: (1) red octagons simply do not exist because you drive a Range Rover; (2) you are entitled to park anywhere -- in alleys, blocking sidewalks, on top of fire hydrants, in the middle of intersections -- without concern for silly city-imposed parking restrictions, and you are certainly entitled to complain to your housekeeper when you get a legally justified parking ticket; (3) you are entitled to drive in the middle of the road and honk when less-expensive vehicles impede your Range Rover's path; (4) tap water is intolerable; (5) that line between parking spots should actually run straight down the middle of your Range Rover; and (6) everything is an inconvenience. There are no exceptions to these rules.

Big Ten Tournament Predictions, Part Deux

Last week, some crazy ass shit happened in the Big Ten. Most notably, Penn State won TWO games, essentially destroying Northwestern and Michigan's NCAA tournament hopes. Oh, and Michigan State choked at home, losing to Ohio State and putting Purdue in the Big Ten lead. For the love of God, let's not let Purdue win the Big Ten.

Current standings and remaining games:
1. Purdue (11-3): at MINN (L), MSU (W), IU (W), at PSU (W)
2 (tie). Michigan State (11-4): at PUR (L), PSU (W), MICH (W)
2 (tie). Ohio State (11-4): at PSU (W), MICH (W), ILL (W)
4. Wisconsin (10-5): at IU (W), IOWA (W), at ILL (L)
5. Illinois (9-5): MICH (W), MINN (W), at OSU (L), WIS (W)
6. Minnesota (7-7): PUR (W), at ILL (L), at MICH (W), IOWA (W)
7. Michigan (6-8): ILL (L), at OSU (L), MINN (L), at MSU (L)
8. Northwestern (6-9): at WIS (L), IOWA (W), at PSU (W), at IU (L)
9. Indiana (3-11): WIS (L), at IOWA (W), at PUR (L), NW (W)
10. Iowa (3-11): at NW (L), IU (L), at WIS (L), at MINN (L)
11. Penn State (2-12): OSU (L), NW (L), at MSU (L), PUR (L)

Predicted final standings and seedings for the Big Ten Tournament (ties are broken per Big Ten tiebreaking procedures):

1. Purdue (14-4) (they would get the 1 seed based on a better record vs. Minnesota than Ohio State)
2. Ohio State (14-4)
3. Michigan State (13-5)
4. Illinois (12-6) (2-0 record vs. Wisconsin)
5. Wisconsin (12-6)
6. Minnesota (10-8)
7. Northwestern (7-11)
8. Michigan (6-12)
9. Indiana (5-13)
10. Iowa (4-14)
11. Penn State (2-16)

First round:
IU over Michigan
Northwestern over Iowa
Minnesota over Penn State

IU over Purdue
Wisconsin over Illinois
OSU over Northwestern
MSU over Minnesota

IU over Wisconsin
MSU over OSU

IU over MSU

Bam, there it is.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Short Skirt, Not Very Long Jacket

When I was walking the dog before work a couple days ago, I saw a woman (but definitely not a lady) in her mid 20s who was walking to the L, apparently to go to work. She was wearing black pantyhose. I assume she was also wearing a skirt, but her jacket, which came down to just below the middle of her thigh, was completely covering any skirt. I bet she gets sexually harassed a lot, I thought.

Then, after I got off the train downtown, I saw a woman wearing a mini skirt and what I would describe as whorish nylons (not quite fishnets, but not regular hose). "I bet your vagina is pretty fucking cold," I screamed. I've seen other women with similar outfits. While it's not unbearably cold in the mornings, it's still under 30 degrees. I checked around and, much to my surprise, there is not a prostitute convention this week in Chicago. The Auto Show's at McCormick Place, though. Not relevant to this conversation, but it's something to think about.

Now, just so we're clear, I wholeheartedly support a woman's right to choose how she covers (or does not cover) her legs. I just find it fascinating that these women are more concerned with looking like sluts than they are with their physical well-being. "I might get frostbite, but at least I'll look hot when I do."

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Sorority House Fashion Massacre

So I'm minding my business on Yahoo's homepage last week, about to search for some work-appropriate literotica, when I see a link (this is one of Yahoo's top four stories at the time, mind you) called "Secret sorority style rules." Thinking I might have found what I was looking for, I clicked on the article. While it wasn't what I had hoped, I did learn that the Pi Phi house at Cornell has a "style guide" for its pledges, authored by the rush chair.

This got still-bitter GDI Jennifer Romolini's panties (Hanes, no doubt) in a bunch, enough so that she wrote an article lambasting the well-groomed and immaculately dressed women of Pi Beta Phi. It's as if Romolini is completely shocked that a sorority (at an Ivy League school, no less) is superficial, elitist, and vain. From what I could tell, that's pretty much why sororities exist: to further the cause of elitism and vanity on college campuses. Hell, there were sororities at IU who would make their pledges do sit-ups before dinner each night. It's too bad the Pi Phis at Cornell aren't as concerned about the physical health of their pledges as they are about their clothing and upper lip hair.

Let's take a gander at some of these allegedly horrifying fashion suggestions (for the full "guide," click here):

Clothes and accessories

No watches with timers or any kind of Indiglo light are allowed. ("I will have the time to keep you informed, so unless your watch is a piece of jewelry, you don't need it. Put on a bangle.")
But what if the pledges want to have a 600-yard dash? How will we know who's the best? Also, I assume the second sentence meant "The Bangles" and not "a bangle." Manic Monday, indeed!

Pi Phi members should not wear satin unless they weigh under 130 pounds or the piece is from Dolce & Gabbana or Betsey Johnson.
Frankly, I think they could have just stopped after the word "satin." I don't know who Betsey Johnson is, but she must be the chick in the house with the classiest satin dresses. I am concerned about the implication that Pi Phi has members who are over 130 pounds. Perhaps they need Jillian Michaels more than they need advice about wearing satin.

No American Apparel leggings.
So they don't want their pledges to look like undernourished, sullen, vaguely foreign models who bend over in front of mirrors?

"No cropped pants. Ugh."
Aren't all pants cropped at some point? I guess it would be hilarious to see a bunch of 129-pound chicks walking around campus, tripping over really long pant legs that hang down under their satin dresses.

No "frumpy" clothes or "muffin top."
No one likes 19-year-olds who dress like 50-year-olds, and, likewise, muffin tops are generally uncouth, unless, of course, she is talking about the food. In that case, they are surprisingly high in calories.

"Booties ok if you can pull them off, aka probably not."
Thank you! Someone realizes that women look ridiculous in boots. Uggs are an abortion.

"I expect everyone to be wearing accessories. This is an important part of every outfit and can make or break any ensemble."
"Accessories" is pretty vague, and this could be construed by some literalists as a command to wear people who have aided in the commission of crimes. That would definitely break an ensemble.

"Bangles need to coordinate."
Of course Susanna Hoffs and Vicki Peterson are going to coordinate. Otherwise, the harmonies on "In Your Room" would seem forced.

"I'm not saying you have to wear a Harry Winston wreath, but I am saying I won't tolerate any gross plastic shizzzz. I love things on wrists and I demand earrings if your ears are pierced."
Who the fuck wears wreaths? Is Harry Winston a local Ithaca arborist? This all seems a little too Christmas-centric for me. Then again, I doubt Pi Phi lets in Jews (or any non-Anglicans, for that matter). And what's with the "shizzzz," Snoop Dogg? Sounds like someone's been hanging out in Kings County! You know who else loves things on wrists and demands earrings? Hitler. And Andy Bernard.

Makeup and grooming

No chapped lips or mustaches.
I can't believe a sorority wants its members not to look like dudes with bloody lips.

"Blush is not optional."
This reminds me of something my pledge trainer O'Shea Jackson once told me: "Pimpin' ain't easy, but it's necessary." Same concept.

Hair must be "freshly colored."
I can understand that a sorority would not want its members to have green or purple hair, or any other color popular in the devil-may-care 1980s, although this seems somewhat at odds with this chick's Bangles fetish.

"You best have a mani/pedi when you get to Ithaca."
After all, Ithaca is gorges. Ah-thank you!

I think the best part is the university's response. When alerted to this attempt to beautify the campus, the university more or less said, "Who fucking cares?" Agreed.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Tuesday Top Ten: Winter Olympic Sports

As usual, I all but forgot about the Olympics until they started, and now I am, as usual, physically and emotionally (and sexually) addicted to them. With that in mind, here are my ten favorite winter Olympic sports:

10. Bobsled.
"Hey, let's build a covered sled and go down a frozen waterslide."

9. Freestyle skiing (moguls).
I am always amazed at how fast skiers are able to fly through moguls with pretty much only their legs moving, and then do some aerial tricks twice in the middle, as if going down a bunny hill.

8. Biathlon.
Only in Norway would it seem logical to invent a sport that combines cross country skiing and shooting rifles at targets the size of silver dollars.

7. Snowboard Cross.
This is a relatively new one, but it's a fun one to watch. Four snowboarders race each other through twists, turns, and jumps, often resulting in spills and broken dreams.

6. Short Track Speed Skating.
This is more entertainment on ice than the 1974-75 Philadelphia Flyers. I especially like the relays, when they slingshot the next racer.

5. Ski Jumping.
I want to go to there.

4. Speed Skating.
It's like track, but on ice. Having no ability to ice skate (but insanely deceptive footspeed), I can respect that.

3. Alpine skiing (downhill).
I don't dislike the other alpine skiing events (slalom, giant slalom, Super G, combined), but downhill is usually the one that results in the highest speeds, which I'm all about. Plus, it reminds me of what little skiing I have done, because I prefer to ski straight down the hill as fast as possible.

2. Skeleton/Luge.
I combine these because they're both awesome, and they're essentially the same, except that skeleton racers go head first lying on their stomachs instead of feet first lying on their backs, like lugers. You would think it would be the skeleton racers that would be the ones dying.

1. Curling.
One day, perhaps in 2014, Tradd, Ryan, and I will bring home curling gold for the U.S. Then we will release a surprisingly graphic rap album under the name Stone Throwaz.

Monday, February 15, 2010

New Hendrix Album Coming March 9

On September 18 of this year, Jimi Hendrix will have been dead for 40 years. Yet it seems like every several years, some previously undiscovered Hendrix songs get released. He's like 2Pac before there was a 2Pac. In the last 15 years, several compilations of previously unreleased songs have graced the world with their presence (Voodoo Soup, First Rays of the New Rising Sun, South Saturn Delta). But the latest discovery is the most interesting in my mind.

Valleys of Neptune -- which comes out March 9 -- is an actual studio album Hendrix was working on after Electric Ladyland, as he was transitioning from the Experience to the Band of Gypsys (Billy Cox plays bass on several songs, while Noel Redding plays on the others). The album contains five never-before-released songs, as well as studio versions of a few songs that had only been previously released as part of live recordings (including "Lover Man" and "Hear My Train a Comin'"), and a couple previously released songs (including "Stone Free," "Fire," and "Red House").

As a big Hendrix fan, this is exciting news. In my opinion, Hendrix is not only hands down the greatest guitar player of all-time, but also one of the single greatest musical talents the world has ever seen (as well as an underrated lyricist and singer). Any time new material comes out, it's good news to me.

Big Ten Predictions

Is it too early to chart IU's improbable run through the Big Ten Tournament to an NCAA automatic bid? I think not.

As I've done in years past, in the coming weeks I'll be making my predictions for the remaining Big Ten games and Big Ten Tournament seedings.

Current standings:
1 (tie). Michigan State (10-3)
Remaining games: at IU (W), OSU (W), at PUR (L), PSU (W), MICH (W)
1 (tie). Ohio State (10-3)
Remaining games: PUR (W), at MSU (L), at PSU (W), MICH (W), ILL (W)
3. Purdue (9-3)
Remaining games: at OSU (L), ILL (W), at MINN (L), MSU (W), IU (W), at PSU (W)
4 (tie). Illinois (9-4)
Remaining games: at PUR (L), at MICH (W), MINN (W), at OSU (L), WIS (W)
4 (tie). Wisconsin (9-4)
Remaining games: at MINN (L), NW (W), at IU (W), IOWA (W), at ILL (L)
6. Northwestern (6-7)
Remaining games: PSU (W), at WIS (L), IOWA (W), at PSU (W), at IU (L)
7 (tie). Minnesota (5-7)
Remaining games: WIS (W), IU (W), PUR (W), at ILL (L), at MICH (W), IOWA (W)
7 (tie). Michigan (5-7)
Remaining games: at IOWA (L), PSU (W), ILL (L), at OSU (L), MINN (L), at MSU (L)
9. Indiana (3-9)
Remaining games: MSU (L), at MINN (L), WIS (L), at IOWA (W), at PUR (L), NW (W)
10. Iowa (3-10)
Remaining games: MICH (W), at NW (L), IU (L), at WIS (L), at MINN (L)
11. Penn State (0-12)
Remaining games: at NW (L), at MICH (L), OSU (L), NW (L), at MSU (L), PUR (L)

Predicted final standings and seedings for the Big Ten Tournament (ties are broken per Big Ten tiebreaking procedures):

1. Michigan State (14-4) (1-0 record vs. OSU)
2. Ohio State (14-4)
3. Purdue (13-5)
4. Illinois (12-6) (2-0 record vs. Wisconsin)
5. Wisconsin (12-6)
6. Minnesota (10-8)
7. Northwestern (9-9)
8. Michigan (6-12)
9. Indiana (5-13)
10. Iowa (4-14)
11. Penn State (0-18)

Here's how the Big Ten Tournament should go down:

First round:
IU over Michigan
Northwestern over Iowa
Minnesota over Penn State

IU over MSU
Wisconsin over Illinois
OSU over Northwestern
Minnesota over Purdue

IU over Wisconsin
OSU over Minnesota

IU over OSU

Simple as that.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

GMYH on Facebook

Hi all. Just to let you know, we here at GMYH have started a Facebook page for GMYH. Click on the link to become a fan, and every time GMYH is updated, it will show up in your News Feed. I added a link on the sidebar in the general info, and a badge a little further below. Good day.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Midwestern Eavesdropping - 2/10/10

Old partner to paralegal during conversation unrelated to dogs: "You can't take my son's dog for a walk because it was killed this weekend."
Eavesdropper: GMYH

Mid-40s super tall gentleman in a grocery store: "I am seriously so depressed. What's the point of living if you can't enjoy a cigarette? I'm ready to divorce that bitch for making me quit."
--Chicago, Treasure Island, North & Wells
Eavesdropper: Bob Terwilliger

Twentysomething female with two masters degrees: "So the Google directions say it takes 4 hours and 50 minutes to get to Cincy. It's really 5 hours and 50 minutes due to the time change, right?"
Eavesdropper: The Loose-Lipped Lithuanian

Thirtysomething male: "Tell Haiti, shit happens when you party naked."
Eavesdropper: Tron

Twentysomething female: "I paid my dues at the shit factory."
Eavesdropper: The Loose-Lipped Lithuanian

Fiftysomething secretary on the phone: "I'm sorry... gringo? What? ... Oh... Okay. So should I put 'Attention: Ringo' on the envelope, then?"
--Chicago, Washington & Wacker
Eavesdropper: RobD

Twentysomething dude on train: "After you see my back moustache, it's all downhill from there."
--Chicago, Brown Line train
Eavesdropper: The Loose-Lipped Lithuanian

Two guys talk at Super Bowl party:
Guy #1: "So, you're teaching a bunch of retards?"
Guy #2, who is a special ed teacher: "No, mostly they're just a-holes."
--Plainfield, IL
Eavesdropper: GMYH

TV commercial: "The ribbon is 1000 feet."
Twentysomething female: "That's a mile, right?"
Eavesdropper: The Loose-Lipped Lithuanian

Thirtysomething woman, as elevator doors slide shut: "Don't judge me for my beehive hair."
Twentysomething attorney: "Pardon?"
Thirtysomething woman: "I was demonstrating. My makeup artist teased the shit out of the crap."
--Chicago, Astor & Banks
Eavesdropper: RobD

Twentysomething female to baby: "You don't have to open your mouth so wide for a pacifier. Just let it hang in your mouth like it's a cigarette."
Eavesdropper: The Loose-Lipped Lithuanian

Guy on Red Line to girl getting off train: "It was good to see you. I'll call you sometime."
Girl: "You too, although I got a new phone, so I don't know if you have my phone number anymore."
Guy (joking): "Well, maybe I won't call you then."
Girl: "But if you call me, I'll answer."
--Chicago, Red Line train
Eavesdropper: GMYH

And, as we do from time to time, here is a photo that isn't technically eavesdropping, but worth of inclusion:
--Reynoldsburg, OH, East Broad Street
Eavesdropper: NaviKate

Thanks to all who contributed. As usual, if you overhear anything funny, email it to for inclusion in the next exciting edition of Midwestern Eavesdropping.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Why Parents Shouldn't Have Facebook Accounts

I don't have time for a Tuesday Top Ten this week, but I abhor the prospect of leaving you fair readers without something to chew on. Check out this hilarious link, entitled "Five Reasons Why Parents Should Not Have Facebook." While hilarious, you may want to be careful about opening this at your place of employment (especially those of you who work at High Times), as the website is called Thanks to Katie, through Holt, for the link.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Super Bowls and The Like

With the Saints' victory (thanks in large part to former Hoosier Tracy Porter's 74-yard interception return for a touchdown with 3 minutes left), they became the 28th NFL team to play in a Super Bowl and the 18th team to win a Super Bowl.

In the 44 seasons of the Super Bowl era (the 1966-67 season to the present), no major professional league has had as much parity as the NFL, or at least that was my theory. Here are how the four major pro sports league breakdown of percentage of teams that have won a championship in the Super Bowl era and percentage of teams that made it to the championship game or series.

Percentage of champions since 1966-67 season:
1. MLB - 19 different champions (63.33%)
2. NFL - 18 different champions (56.25%)
3. NHL - 16 different champions (53.33%)
4. NBA - 14 different champions (46.67%)

Percentage of teams that made it to the championship game or series since 1966-67 season:
1. NFL - 28 of 32 teams have played in the Super Bowl (87.5%)
(Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, Houston Texans, and Jacksonville Jaguars have not made it)
2. MLB - 26 of 30 teams have played in the World Series (86.67%)
(Chicago Cubs, Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, and Washington Nationals have not made it)
3. NHL - 24 of 30 teams have played for Lord Stanley's Cup (80%)
(Atlanta Thrashers, Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild, Nashville Predators, Phoenix Coyotes, San Jose Sharks have not made it)
4. NBA - 21 of 30 teams have played in the NBA Finals (70%)
(Atlanta Hawks, Charlotte Bobcats, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Orleans Hornets, Sacramento Kings, and Toronto Raptors have not made it)

So, there it is.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Super? Bowl

I'll admit it. I'm excited for Sunday's Super Bowl. I think the two best teams are playing, which is the first time in a while I can remember that happening, and I think Super Bowl XLIV is going to be a great game.

To confirm my suspicions, I took a look at Super Bowl and playoff history, and I was right, kind of. While it has been a long time since two No. 1 seeds have made it to the Super Bowl (and that is a relatively rare occurrence), my hope for a close game may be just a pipe dream.

The last time two No. 1 seeds met in the Super Bowl was when Dallas and Buffalo met in Super Bowl XXVIII after the 1993 season, with the Cowboys trouncing the Bills 30-13 (and Buffalo losing their fourth consecutive Super Bowl -- Muthafuckalo indeed). Other than that, two No. 1 seeds have met only 7 other times:
-Super Bowl XXVI (Redskins 37 Bills 24)
-Super Bowl XXIV (49ers 55 Broncos 10)
-Super Bowl XIX (49ers 38 Dolphins 16)
-Super Bowl XVIII (Raiders 38 Redskins 9)
-Super Bowl XVI (49ers 26 Bengals 21)
-Super Bowl XII (Cowboys 27 Broncos 10)
-Super Bowl XI (Raiders 32 Vikings 14)

When two No. 1 seeds have met, the average score is 35.4 to 14.6. As you can see, only one of those games had a margin of victory of less than 13 points, and a 1 vs. 1 matchup provided the most lopsided result in Super Bowl history (the 45-point beat down administered by the 49ers in Super Bowl XXIV). The Saints have history on their side, as the NFC is 6-2 in 1 vs. 1 Super Bowls (and holds a 29.5-20.5 margin in average points scored in 1 vs. 1 games). Then again, the AFC was horrendous for a 15-year span, winning only one Super Bowl between XV and XXXII (the aforementioned Raiders victory in Super Bowl XVIII).

With that, my prediction is: Saints 35 Colts 31 Ditka 412.

(A note: Before the 1975 season, there was no real seeding system for the NFL playoffs, as the home teams were decided based on a yearly rotation and, thus, there was not necessarily any home-field advantage for the best teams. Thus, I excluded any Super Bowls before the 1975-76 season (i.e., Super Bowl X). From what I could tell, two pre-1975 Super Bowls pitted the best teams from each league against each other: Super Bowl I (Packers 35 Chiefs 10) and Super Bowl VII (Dolphins 14 Redskins 7). If those games are added to the mix, then the average score would be 33.2 to 13.4.)

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Guilty Pleasure Song Retort

As he's wont to do from time to time, Greg Weeser* emailed me in response to a blog post -- my Top Ten Guilty Pleasure Songs, which I posted yesterday. Since yesterday was his birthday, I will indulge him post haste. His comments are in yellow, and my responses are in non-yellow.

This response is too long to be a Blog Comment, but should be the subject of its *own* post, due to the severe ramifications of my accusations...(sorry for the Jesse Jackson impression)

Why are you sorry? Does Jesse Jackson unnecessarily capitalize "Blog Comment" too?

...but basically, you've failed big time (for the first time) in your Musical List entries...

I highly doubt that.

In order for a song to be a true 'guilty' pleasure, it must make you feel ACTUALLY GUILTY singing along or enjoying the song amongst your peers & contemporaries.

I disagree to a certain extent. As I explained in the post, "guilty pleasure" songs are, in my opinion, songs I'm not supposed to like from a social acceptability standpoint. I would not feel comfortable singing along in front of my peers to some of the songs on my list, but not all of them. But, again, I think your definition is too limiting. If "actual guilt" were the measuring stick, then I would have no guilty pleasure songs because I don't really feel guilty listening to -- and enjoying -- any music I own, aside from maybe "Look at Your Game Girl" by Charles Manson, since he ordered the execution of various innocent people, including a woman who was eight months pregnant.

There must be a residual bit of shame attached to your connection with the song, and that bit of shame is impossible if the song pre-dates your entry into adolescence/teenagerdom/adulthood. Anything before then is either 'cute' since it's a childhood memory (and therefore shame-proof, since it resides in the same nostalgic bin as bedwetting and public nose-picking)...or worse: kitschy, retro or ironic, if it is before your actual birth. Therefore, SIX of your songs are *DQed*, and your list is a big, g-damn do-over.

Not true. I would classify a song is a "guilty pleasure" if I would be embarrassed to be caught listening to it on my iPod on the train (if I actually listened to my iPod on the train) or if I would be embarrassed if someone came into my office and I was listening to it. I think I would be shamed if I was caught blasting "Dancing Queen" on the train, or if someone walked into my office in the middle of "You're So Vain." And I find nothing nostalgic about bedwetting. And what's with the "g-damn"? Are you really worried that it's the taking of the Lord's name in vain in an email that's hurting your chances of going to heaven?

Sorry bub. It's still my birthday for 27 more minutes, and I've been I'm automatically right.

Happy birthday! But you're wrong.

"Since You've Been Gone"? Fine. Good. Plenty shameful.

That's why I put it on the list. And it's "Since U Been Gone."

But Carly Simon? The Carpenters? Air Supply? Go fuck yourself, you dirty hipster. Take off your pork-pie hat, put away your skinny jeans

I can't fuck myself. Lord knows I've tried. And I would hardly classify myself as a hipster. I don't own a pork-pie hat, my ass is far too bulbous for skinny jeans (not that I would wear them if it wasn't), I don't have a poorly grown mustache, many of my t-shirts are not ironic, I have a job that doesn't involve delivering sandwiches via bicycle, and I get weird looks when I go to bars in Wicker Park. While I'd rather not be constrained by socioeconomic group labels, I am, in fact, a young urban professional, or what narrow-minded folks might call a "yuppie."

and pick out some Real Skeletons from your (recent!) iTunes closet. Shit that you've downloaded and love...really, really LUV singing to in the car...and post those in the Top 10 list. *That's* a guilty pleasure, not just a list of cheesy 70s songs with a fun 'throwback' vibe.

I picked out the only "real skeletons" from my iTunes closet. Believe me, I scoured my iPod when putting together that list. I generally still just buy full albums (in hard copy form), and I don't download a lot of songs. The songs that I do download are usually awesome, as are the songs I love singing in the car. Nice plug for Southwest Airlines, by the way.

It's not as easy as I make it sound, however. Lots of 'Cheesy' songs don't qualify, since they could count as 'sexy' or 'classy'.

There is nothing sexy or classy about Air Supply.

Songs from Timberlake, Buble or, I dunno... Carolina Liar... are non-starters, because as gay as they may seem to dudes, you'd be perfectly willing to put them in on the 'shuffle' list if you thought they'd get you laid. Which they better, since it's certainly not your hair or your car. (Says the balding Accord driver...)

I don't listen to Timberlake, Buble, or Carolina Liar anyway. If I did, then they would most definitely be on the list. You must understand, I haven't driven to work in four years, which means I haven't listened to the radio in four years (and I didn't have iTunes before then). Furthermore, for the most part, the bars I frequent have jukeboxes (or, occasionally, live bands), rather than DJs. Thus, I have managed to shelter myself from many recent possible "guilty pleasure" songs simply by not listening to pop radio stations or going clubbing. Also, my "shuffle" list is my entire iPod, so I'm willing to put any song I own on my "shuffle" list, regardless of whether it might result in procreation. I resent your comment about my hair and car, the former being lush and the latter being a deceptively fast Swedish station wagon with a totally awesome nickname ("The Blaab"). I feel that neither has had a negative impact on my ability to engage in the most zesty of enterprises. In fact, if I had my old car (a '91 Accord) and a less full head of hair, I think my ability to take the skin boat to Tuna Town would be diminished (no offense).

So, it's gotta be songs that you'd *never* want your family, friends or potential mate to discover.
This is where you and I differ when it comes to the definition of "guilty pleasure." I think this takes it too far. Sure, I'd never want my mom to discover that I listen to NWA, although, as recently as 1992, I would blare it in my room when I was pissed off at her. And I won't play that for Daughter until she's at least two, when she's old enough to understand why "Fuck Tha Police" is awesome and can laugh when Judge Dre finds the police officer guilty of being a "redneck, white-bred, chicken shit motherfucker." But I have never felt guilty about listening to NWA. My friends? They know I have an eclectic taste in music, so I don't think there is much other than what I listed yesterday that I could even be potentially embarrassed about listening to. By "potential mate," I'll assume you mean my wife. She has access to all of my music. We have differing tastes.

(Def Leppard, as usual, is exempt. If some chick doesn't like the image of me singing "Foolin" into my bar of Anthony-For-Men Exfoliating Mud Scrub soap in the shower, then she can wash her own damn tits for all I care.)

Truer words have never been spoken. I am not, and will never be, embarrassed to listen to Def Leppard, or any other hair band music. It exemplifies all that was right about the 1980s.

Putting my money where my mouth is:
-"Good Girls Go Bad" by Cobra Starship, featuring Leighton Meester
-"Waking Up in Vegas" by Katy Perry
-"It's My Life/Confessions Pt II" mashup by the Cast of Glee
-"Poker Face" by Lady Gaga
-"I Love College" by Asher Roth
-"Call on Me" by Eric Pydz
-"Crushcrushcrush" by Paramore
-"The Sweet Escape" by Gwen Stefani, featuring Akon
-"Ice Cream" by Sarah McLachlan (actually, that got me laid once. Do-over)
-"Sugar, We're Going Down" by Fall Out Boy
-"Take it Off" by The Donnas.

You should not put money in or near your mouth. It's dirty. Going back to what I said earlier, I really don't own many postadolescent songs that I would feel shameful listening to. I never bought any of the Lilith Fair-type stuff. I don't own too many recent pop songs. I don't listen to emo. I hate Creed and Nickleback. When I buy a single song on iTunes, it's usually because I like it. I suppose if I had "Single Ladies" by Beyonce (or any other Beyonce or Destiny's Child) on my iPod, that might make the list, but I don't own it. I like The Donnas, so there's nothing to be embarrassed about there (and you shouldn't feel shame when listening to chicks that rock out). For your edification, two songs that might be added to my list would be "Don't Let Me Get Me" by Pink and "Chop Suey!" by System of a Down, the latter because I don't like System of a Down at all. One song I used to have in college that I just thought of that would definitely make the list is "Barbie Girl" by Aqua. I might have to download that tonight.

Take THAT. (Which, actually, would have been a good choice for a band on the list as well. Gotta love the early Robbie Williams).

No, I don't gotta love the early Robbie Williams.

Your turn.

I just went.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Tuesday Top Ten: Guilty Pleasure Songs

I never really liked the term guilty pleasure as it applies to music. It implies that there are certain bands or songs you should feel guilty for listening to, even though you find them pleasurable. Hookers are a guilty pleasure; music is not. Nonetheless, that's what society would want me to call this post, so I am referring to the ten songs below as my top ten guilty pleasure songs. I'm not supposed to like these songs for one reason or another. They're supposed to be too cheesy, too soft, too schmaltzy, or simply too gay (I mean that in the homosexual way, not the pejorative way) for them to be socially acceptable for me to enjoy them. But I do. And it tears me up inside.

With that, here are my top ten guilty pleasure songs, in alphabetical order by artist:

1. "Dancing Queen" by ABBA
I don't care how cheesy and '70s fabulous this song is, it's one of the catchiest songs ever written, simple as that. I read an article once about why ABBA's music is so universally loved. Apparently, there is something in their songs -- I can't remember if it's the melody, the pitch, the chords, the song structure, or what -- that makes it the most sonically pleasurable music for a listener.

2. "The Sign" by Ace of Base
Filling the hole in Swedish pop left by ABBA's absence, Ace of Base burst onto the scene with stories of wanting babies and the like. "The Sign" was something a high school dude who was into metal and rap should not have liked. But he did.

3. "Makin' Love Out of Nothing At All" by Air Supply
Conventional wisdom tell you that no one under fifty should like Air Supply. Sure, they're cheesy and emblematic of what was wrong with music in the early '80s, but don't kid yourself. This song, written by master of epics Jim Steinman (see also, Meat Loaf's "Paradise By the Dashboard Lights" and Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart"), takes Russell Hitchcock and Graham Russell to the edge. Interestingly, the backing musicians on this song include E-Street Band members Roy Bittan and Max Weinberg on keyboards and drums, respectively, as well as Rick Derringer on guitar.

4. "All I Want for Christmas Is You" by Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey is generally a catastrophe, and I can count on one hand the number of her songs I can tolerate, but this song is just so damn catchy. And it's got a great Wall of Sound feel to it. I kid you not, I can listen to this song over and over again and never tire of it.

5. "Superstar" by The Carpenters
I normally don't endorse musicians with eating disorders, but Karen Carpenter killed it on this one. It's '70s schmaltz, but when it kicks into "Don't you remember you told me you love me baby," it's awesome. Hell, if it's good enough for Sonic Youth to cover or for Tommy Callahan to sing, it's good enough for anyone.

6. "Since U Been Gone" by Kelly Clarkson
I try my damnedest to avoid anything or anyone ever having to do with American Idol. This song, however, has many redeeming qualities, particularly it's anthemic and surprisingly rocking qualities.

7. "MMMBop" by Hanson
If you tell me you didn't secretly like this song back in 1997, then you are lying. As much as you wanted to hate these androgynous, long-haired prepubescent brothers, you thought they sung a catchy tune. And, if your last name is Quagmire, you thought Taylor Hanson was a girl.

8. "Candle in the Wind" by Elton John
I'm not a big Elton John fan, but I have always liked this song (the original version, not the compromised second draft). I used to terrorize bad kids when I was a camp counselor by signing this song to them. It would usually make them cry. And to think, now I'm a parent.

9. "Mandy" by Barry Manilow
It sucks you in with its mythological back story and smooth crooning. By the time he hits you with the chorus, it's too late. You came and you gave without taking.

10. "You're So Vain" by Carly Simon
This song is awesome. It has great lyrics about some d-bag who walks into parties like he's walking onto yachts, wears apricot scarves, bets on winning horses at Saratoga, and flies to Nova Scotia to see solar eclipses. Maybe he's so vain because the song IS about him. And because he's awesome.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Monday, February 01, 2010

A Bacon Burger Dog?

As you may know, I'm a huge fan of The Cosby Show. One of Cliff's many culinary creations was something called the bacon burger dog (as well as the less-daunting burger dog). We never actually see what a bacon burger dog looks like, leaving our imagination to wander and wonder. Saturday night, I may have created the closest thing.

We had some buffalo* burgers in our freezer, and we decided that it was high time to imitate the frontiersmen by annihilating what remaining buffalo we had. Like any good American, I devised a way to extract any health benefits from the more-healthy buffalo burger. Here is what I created:
I call it The Muthafuckalo Burger, named after a hairy buffalo party Tradd and I once threw in the summer of '03 to get rid of all our booze before moving out of our place in B-town. The Muthafuckalo is an apt name for the burger for two reasons: (1) a couple days before we threw the Muthafuckalo party, one of our stoner neighbors told us he had a buffalo hook-up, and asked us if we wanted a real, live buffalo calf for the party, the only catch being that it was something like $800 and we would have to keep it after the party**; and (2) the Muthafuckalo party was a total sausage fest.

The layers from top to bottom are as follows:

1. Bun with mayo and ketchup
2. Raw onion rings
3. Fried egg (cooked in bacon grease, of course)
4. Chili dog-flavored hot dog, sliced lengthwise and in half. Yes, you read that correctly: chili dog-flavored hot dogs. My dad got them from Rice's Quality Farm Meats, a small, family-owned meat processor/packer in Spencer, Indiana that makes and sells these hot dogs (as well as many other meats). The dogs taste exactly like chili dogs, but without the mess of chili or diced onions. They also a make chili cheese dog variety, which is equally as good.
5. Bacon
6. American (obviously) cheese
7. Buffalo burger
8. Bun

It was pretty damn good, especially when accompanied by tater tots I seasoned with Lantana (the Tex-Mex seasoning, not the toxic plant).

*Yes, I realize that there is technically no such thing as a North American buffalo, and that it is actually a bison. I'm just going by what the package called the meat. I assume it's a cape buffalo.
**We did not take him up on his offer, mostly because we didn't want a buffalo.