February 22, 2006

Rumors of Our Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated, as Have the Criticisms of Stupid Headlines Like This

Internal Office Memorandum
TO: Matthew Haber
FROM: Jean-Paul B. Tremblay
CC: Guy Vincent Cimbalo VIII
DATE: Timeless, by Goldie
OK, gentlemen, you were right. That's really the only explanation I can surmise for this shot across the bow.

educating_ecuador.jpgGoing off to help teach impoverished and undereducated children in the wilds of Ecuador this winter –– whilst concurrently having left behind that online "Reader Feedback" forum –– turned out to be a dreadfully bad idea. Heinous, even. (Though my lack of internet connectivity proved to be beneficial in polishing my storytelling chops; it's quite striking how my ignorance of all things Denise Richards/Charlie Sheen and Randy "Duke" Cunningham/Mitchell Wade allowed my newfound gift for narrative confabulation to shine at those Quito-based USAID cocktail parties thrown in junction with Rafael and Lucio...I had people actually believing that I was an expert on everything from Supreme Court litmus tests to the canonical ambient compositions of Brian Eno and Harold Budd. Astounding!)

So, like I was saying, that "Reader Feedback" thing for low culture...a fucking bad, bad, bad idea.

denise_richards_randy_cunn.jpgThe indignant, self-righteous anger that poured forth from said forum! As though people were entitled to free content on the web! I've always felt that unless you're an impoverished Ecuadorian, you're not entitled to any such handouts. How very wrong I have since been proven.

And now, not only have we disappointed myriad readers, we seem to have incited some form of extremely aggressive hostility. I am humbled and chastened.

Apparently, these "blog" things are hot shit, and we missed the boat on this one, lads. Or I personally dropped the ball. Or darted home without tagging up at third base. Or mixed sporting metaphors. Fuck if I know; my athletic knowledge is limited to the realm of sexual acrobatics, and that's about it. (My mother once told me a man would fuck a snake if you held its head. I have since learned this is quite true.)

Anyways, let's a get a cease-and-desist out on these guys...there's got to be some form of copyright law or anti-parodic justification we can rely on, right? Do either of you know Lawrence Lessig?

Mucho regardo,

P.S.: Guy, I couldn't help but notice that somehow you managed to escape their assault...I mean, there aren't any embarrassingly amateur photos of you posted on that site. No Flickr attack whatsoever. So the idea that you were behind this, I have to admit, did cross my mind, though I am willing to give your treacherous ass the benefit of the doubt.

Posted in a Desperate, Shallow fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  January 5, 2006

I'm more interested in buying a tree, some rope, and some sheets...and throw in the In Living Color boxed set, too, can you?


What classic American value! 14 episodes of the under-appreciated "Planet of the Apes" television series, finally available on DVD for a mere $43. I can put it on my shelf right next to other similar items, such as...


Ummm. OK, then. The "Similar Items" list also includes, for what it's worth, "Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise And Fall Of Jack Johnson" and "What's Love Got To Do With It (Full Frame)".

(Thanks to jfajitas.)

UPDATED: Apparently this was already caught by a blogger named SanDiegoJohnny back in October of last year, which somehow makes this even worse, in that it has remained unchanged for months, now, and an entire season of holiday shoppers was exposed to such post-Katrina Kommodity Kommentary.

Posted in a Shallow fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  December 8, 2005

Even at this, the moment of his stature's greatest hype yet, James Murphy still slips under the radar...well, at least that of the Associated Press

grammy_trophy.jpgFrom "Carey, Legend, West Lead Grammy Nods", the Associated Press, December 8, 2005:

[Mariah] Carey's eight nominations tied John Legend and Kanye West. Soul crooner Legend's nominations included best new artist, while West is up for album of the year for "Late Registration" and song of the year for "Gold Digger." "I feel incredible," said Legend, a West protege whose debut "Get Lifted" was a million-seller. "You put a lot of expectations into what you want the record to be."

Other multiple nominees included 50 Cent, Gwen Stefani, U2 and Bruce Springsteen.

From the Academy's list of official nominees:

12. Dance Recording: "Galvanize," The Chemical Brothers featuring Q- Tip; "Say Hello," Deep Dish: "Wonderful Night," Fatboy Slim & Lateef; "Daft Punk Is Playing at My House," LCD Soundsystem; "I Believe in You," Kylie Minogue; "Guilt Is a Useless Emotion," New Order.

13. Electronic/Dance Album: "Push the Button," The Chemical Brothers; "Human After All," Daft Punk; "Palookaville," Fatboy Slim; "Minimum- Maximum," Kraftwerk; "LCD Soundsystem," LCD Soundsystem.

See, it's always good for the DFA-haters to get some perspective.

It's almost enough to make one think there still exists a segment of the record-buying populace who hasn't heard Murphy's debut album. Have these poor people not set foot in an Urban Outfitters this past year?

Posted in a Shallow fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 14, 2005

The low culture 50 (Photos of People We Could Find)

People make the world go 'round.

Someone said that once, and while it's not technically true—angular momentum as explained in the equation L=m*w*r2 makes the world go 'round—people are much more fascinating, especially when they pose for photographs.

Welcome to the annual low culture 50, a definitive look at people whose photos we could find. This year's 50 run the gamut from cartoon characters to Presidents— and, no, that's not a political statement, silly! This is a 'shallow' post: None of that gloomy guff here. This is meant to make you smile. And if you're in The low culture 50, you really have a reason to smile!

Paul McCartney Wanda Sykes Ann Curry
Robert Johnson (BET) Robert Johnson (Blues) Ed Helms
Richard Perle Andre Agassi Jerry Rice
bell hooks Theo Epstein Steven Soderbergh
Fredric Jameson Carrie Underwood Elvis Mitchell
Stuart Price (aka Jacques Lu Cont) Martha Stewart Curt Freese, Ph.D
Keira Knightley Steve Case Steve Jobs
Les Moonves Harvey Mackay Robert W. Fogel
lc_50_aisha_tyler.jpg lc_50_christine_taylor.jpg
Howard Dean Aisha Tyler Christine Taylor
lc_50_dave_foley.jpg lc_50_eon_trotsky.jpg lc_50_frank_perdue.jpg
Dave Foley Leon Trotsky Frank Perdue
lc_50_goran_visjnic.jpg lc_50_grover_cleveland.jpg lc_50_jean_baudrillard.jpg
Goran Visjnic Grover Cleveland Jean Baudrillard
lc_50_jeff_greenfield.jpg lc_50_maggie_cheung.jpg lc_50_jesse_oxfeld.jpg
Jeff Greenfield Maggie Cheung Jesse Oxfeld
lc_50_jonathan_lipnicki.jpg lc_50_koko.jpg lc_50_little_ronnie_howard.jpg
Jonathan Lipnicki Koko Little Ronnie Howard
lc_50_mr_hat.jpg lc_50_nat_hentoff.jpg lc_50_Philip_Michael_Thomas.jpg
Mr. Hat Nat Hentoff Philip Michael Thomas
lc_50_quentin_tarantino.jpg lc_50_rakim.jpg lc_50_ringo_starr.jpg
Quentin Tarantino Rakim Ringo Starr
lc_50_sho_kasugi.jpg lc_50_the feral_child.jpg lc_50_wario.jpg
Sho Kosugi The Feral Kid from Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior Wario
lc_50_wilbur_wright.jpg lc_50_woody_harrelson.jpg  
Wilbur Wright Woody Harrelson  
Posted in a Shallow fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 7, 2005

Sharon Waxman, Squeezing Water from a Handsome Stone (was: Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, World's Most Difficult Actor)


At Home in Oliver's Macedonia and Woody's London, the New York Times, November 6, 2005

Selected highlights from the Times' Hollywood scribe Sharon Waxman's interview/Q&A with actor Jonathan Rhys-Meyers, star of Woody Allen's upcoming tennis thriller Match Point...

First up? The 28-year-old actor touches upon this whole "crisis in the Middle East" thing and its relationship to his filming Alexander with director Oliver Stone:

RHYS-MEYERS: You had 20 young male actors, as his main friends, and then 350 soldiers who'd recently pulled out of Basra and Tikrit - they were all actual soldiers. These guys were constantly living their life to the full, because when they were finished, they were being sent back to the Middle East.

WAXMAN: Let's talk about "Match Point."

OK, so the subject of Iraq doesn't interest Waxman so much. Or, at least, an Irish actor's take on Iraq. What about an Irish actor's take on being, hmmm, an Irish actor?

WAXMAN: Are you very Irish?

RHYS-MEYERS: What's very Irish?

WAXMAN: Are you attached to being Irish?

RHYS-MEYERS: Am I in touch with my roots? Yes, I am very Irish.

And with that matter settled, young Jonathan returned to his pensive brooding, coyly maneuvering his gaze about the room, pausing ever-so-briefly to flit his eyelashes...and looking anywhere, anywhere but at this cursed interviewer who had deigned to help him promote his most recent film.

Posted in a Shallow fashion by jp | Comments (0)

From the L'il Gangsta Series

Rims sold separately
12 mpg city/16 mpg playground
Some rollover risk

Posted in a Shallow fashion by guy | Comments (0)

Bai Ling Is a Liar, or, More Fun with Pull Quotes


Posted in a Shallow fashion by guy | Comments (0)

Once Again, Teen People Neglects to Note That Ashlee Simpson Is Actually Quoting Breton's Surrealist Manifesto


Posted in a Shallow fashion by guy | Comments (0)

  November 4, 2005

The Moment You Realize You're Reading Too Much Us Weekly, Vol. 1

You assume they're referring to Chris Martin, lead feyboy of Coldplay, not Paul Martin, Prime Minister of Canada.

Posted in a Shallow fashion by guy | Comments (0)

  October 31, 2005

Laugh Yourself Silly With the New York Times Magazine's "Funny Pages"

This week we made funny with:

Chris Ware's eavesdropping, sexist cripples!

Elmore Leonard's alcoholic spinsters and blood-thirsty lawmen!

"You shot the four guys who drove their car into the roadhouse that time, all of them coming out armed and standing fairly close. One of 'em, Nestor Lott, the ex-federal agent gone bad, packed two .45's cinched to his legs. Nestor pulled on you and you shot him and turned and shot the other three." Gary paused.

Carl said: "This friend of Peyton's, Venicia Munson, was an old-maid schoolteacher who drank Peyton's wildcat whiskey and didn't care who knew it. We're sitting in her kitchen waiting for Peyton to show, she told me she was scared to death. I said, 'Well, that'll teach you to get mixed up with a bank robber.' She said: 'You're the one scares me, not Peyton. I can tell you'd rather shoot him than bring him in.' She said it was why I became a marshal, to get to carry a gun and shoot people."

And Firoozeh Dumas' racially-profiled family!

As soon as my father showed up, we started singing "Happy Birthday" in English. It would have been more natural for us to sing in Persian, but if you are part of a large Middle Eastern contingency these days, you're already scaring people. Add to that a loud song with guttural sounds and clapping, and you have passengers speed-dialing the Department of Homeland Security.

Previously: More Hilarity from the New York Times Magazine's "Funny Pages," and As Seen On The New York Times Magazine's "Funny Pages"

Posted in a Shallow fashion by guy | Comments (0)

Continue Reading in "Shallow"
Slate's Breakfast Table, but Not (A conversation about the news of the day)
The Eyes Have It
Stop speaking for my generation, you louts!
Hark! The Herald Angels Spin
The HuffPo: Good for Politics, Bad for Laughs (or, yet another round of "This is Just Like That")
Visage Visionaries: South-of-Houston Hipsters, or Houston Astros?
More Hilarity from the New York Times Magazine's "Funny Pages"
Apparently, the Clients Thought "Download More Porn with Intel" Wasn't Catchy Enough
Adventures in the Skin Trade, Vol. 4
low culture: What Happened? (A Long, Interminable History)
by Modesty Blaise
Special to The Bizarro-Times Picayune

The Apple Falls Far, Far From the Tree
The Cover Story
Hey, Jack: My Reality Distortion Field is Bigger Than Yours
As Seen On The New York Times Magazine's "Funny Pages"
Steve Jobs' Reading List
Lesbian Ass vs. the Commuter Class
Ronald McDonald's Happy Steal
Ask Ben Kunkel
Tragedies Come in Threes
Just ask her son, Ryder Truck
Introducing Kanye West, pre-eminent comedian and light, frilly jokemaker
A Brechtian Stageplay about the emergence of Gay Blogs, starring the new proprietors of "Queerty"
It's Probably Time to Change That Whole "Signature Drink" Thing
Apparently Topping the Hot 100 Doesn't Warrant a Spell Check on Your Name
This is what makes "Premium" membership so worth it
Forget It, Jake. It's Sun Valley
Coming Soon: A Very Personal Film From The Director of War of the Worlds
Draft Abdul: Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back for America
Mamma Mia!
The Perfect Byline
by Quip Meekly

Guide to the Talent
Editorial Director: Steven R. Boots
Editor: Recalcitrant P. Chinstraps
Executive Editor: Alfred Glass
Managing Editor: Bianca Goode
Senior Editors: Waldo Carr (National Affairs); Leann Haywood (News);
Courtney Ransom (Entertainment)
Special Projects Editor: Hinged O. Clutched
Associate Editors: Fritz Winter; Randi Hanks
Assistant Editors: Joey C. Huff; Adrian Russell; Cameron Lehman
Contributing Editors: Christy Ashley; Vincent Bray ; Guy Cimbalo; Jamie Coulter; Matt Haber; Abdul Lawal; Wendy Newsome; Jean-Paul Tremblay;
Santos Vaugh; Josefa Webber
Editor-at-Large: Lindsey Lusk
Intern: Bruno Keith

Publisher: Abdulqasem Dasilver
Public Relations: Peggy Boucher

  June 12, 2006

Does That Also Go for Zarqawi?

"They are smart, they are creative, they are committed... They have no regard for life, neither ours nor their own. I believe this was not an act of desperation, but an act of asymmetrical warfare waged against us."
- Rear Adm. Harry B. Harris Jr., commander of the detention camp at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. (Quoted by James Risen and Tim Golden, 3 Prisoners Commit Suicide at Guantánamo, The New York Times, June 11, 2006.)

  February 22, 2006

Delicately sneaking up behind his biggest fan, God decided to forcefully upbraid Little George once and for all


Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  January 5, 2006

You'll see that an acknowledgment of failures in our policy was implicit in my statement, sir.

Via today's AP: "Bodies lie in the street after suicide bomb attack in Karbala Iraq in this image taken from TV Thursday Jan. 5, 2006"

From "U.S. Has End in Sight on Iraq Rebuilding", the Washington Post, January 2, 2006:

U.S. officials say comparatively minor sabotage to distribution systems is keeping Iraqis from seeing the gains from scores of projects to increase electricity generation and oil production. To showcase a rebuilt school or government building, meanwhile, is to invite insurgents to bomb it.

If 2006 brings political stability and an easing of the insurgency, Americans say, the distribution systems can be fairly easily repaired.

"The good news is this investment is not in any way lost; they're there," said Dan Speckhard, the director of the U.S. reconstruction management office in Iraq. "They will pay off, they will be felt, if not this month, then six months down the road."

Your concerns will be addressed, people...a mere six months down the potholed, blood-spattered, bomb-shellacked road.

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  December 12, 2005

"No nation in history has made the transition to a free society without facing challenges, setbacks and false starts."

The President's quote in the headline above comes by way of Bush Estimates 30,000 Iraqis Killed, the Washington Post, December 12, 2005...

Fair enough. And what, you may ask, defines a "challenge"? How about the experiences yet to be had by the young girl below, grieving over the corpse of her gunned-down daddy? She can at least always be thankful that he didn't die in one of Saddam's infamous torture rooms, because then, you see, she would be angry and bitter about his death at the hands of an all-powerful, violent government entity. It's so much better this way. Our way. The American way.


"Setbacks"? Here's venturing a good guess that this kid below underwent quite a setback when his leg was blown off. Really, lad...no child will be left behind, we'll just expect you to work that much harder to catch up with the rest of us as you hobble along the streets of your newly-democratic Iraq.


"False starts"? An improperly-timed beginning, as in the case of the boy pictured below. Wait, that's wrong. An improperly-timed end, e.g. this kid never really got to start his life because now he's fucking dead as a result of an invasion enacted under false pretenses.


Remember, kids, keep those photos coming! We're compiling the best of them for our limited-edition "God Wanted You to Die" commemorative PDF.

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (8)

  December 6, 2005

This holiday season -- I mean, Christmastime -- all I want is a constituency with whom I can speak comfortably


An actual quote from our actual president at yesterday's White House Children's Holiday Reception:

"This is Laura; I'm George W. We hope you've had some fun here. I hope nobody pinched Rudolph on the nose. Nobody did? That's good. Rudolph is happy about that, too."

Because it's a novel endeavor to imply that President Bush is a sub-literate imbecile, get it? That's the essence of easy laughter.

Just ask top-tier comedy writers everywhere!

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 22, 2005

At least the Vice President wraps himself in lies and deceptions, rather than blackface



Hey, members of the rightwing cabal, chill out, my bible-totin' brethren. The whole hullabaloo over the vice president's visage being obscured by a giant black X on CNN's broadcast of his speech to the AEI yesterday? We got all worked up about nothin', man. It was merely a technical error, see?

Which is far, far better than an error in judgment.

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 21, 2005

The highlight and crowning achievement of President Bush's federal taxpayer-financed, weeklong trip to Asia

President Bush rides with members of the Chinese Olympic cycling team on the Laoshan Olympic Mountain Bike Course in Beijing. (Charles Dharapak, Associated Press)

The Washington Post's headline writers illustrate the success of his trip as follows, and somehow manage to be both more and less pointed in their commentary: "Bush's Asia Trip Meets Low Expectations" (Washington Post, November 21, 2005).

But you know what? We're at least proud to say he is so totally beating those Chinamen! You show them who invented bicycling, George! And we'll pretend it wasn't the French or the Germans. And that no one can ever, ever, ever pass you on the bikepaths. Or tell you that you're wrong. About anything at all.

And then there's this, which, as always, is unrelated...from "House Approves Spending Reductions", Washington Post, November 18, 2005:

The House narrowly approved a broad five-year budget plan early this morning that squeezes programs for the poor, for college students and for farmers, handing Republican leaders a hard-fought victory after weeks of resistance in GOP ranks.

No word yet on whether or not the Pointless-but-Pricey Trips Abroad Appropriations Bill (H.J.Res.27, H.R. 48) will be vetoed once it hits the president's desk.

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 14, 2005

Unintentionally Hilarious Photo of the Moment, vol. 61


  November 9, 2005

No, all they need is an inability to read, and a strong, well-defined dislike of colored folks

From "Texas Voters Approve Ban on Gay Marriage", the Associated Press, November 9, 2005:

"Texans know that marriage is between a man and a woman, and children deserve both a mom and a dad. They don't need a Ph.D. or a degree in anything else to teach them that," said Kelly Shackelford, a leader Texans For Marriage, which favored the ban.

Southern anti-intellectualism continues to thrive! It's almost enough to make one feel sorry for the faculty and students at a place like Rice University.

But not really. Fuck you, Texas.

Posted in a Grave fashion by jp | Comments (0)

  November 8, 2005

Unintentionally Hilarious Photo of the Moment, Vol. 60


Continue Reading in "Grave"
A man, (no) plan, a canal...
An illustrated depiction of the discrepancy in campaign spending for tomorrow's New York City Mayoral Election between Mike Bloomberg and Fernando Ferrer
These two must fuck like mad
Unintentionally Hilarious Photo of the Moment, vol. 59
EXCLUSIVE! The indictments are in, and the wait is over!
For Shame! Turning your backs on your biggest donors like this...
When even President Bush seems to have stopped taking this war seriously...
Please, God, carry me through this time of great difficulty
In case you ever wondered what's wrong with privatized healthcare
Redactio ad Absurdum
Now Playing: The Ultimate Film About the Downfall of Big Institutions (Fun with Tom DeLay's Mugshot, Vol. 2)
A message much clearer than the aspens, which turn in clusters out West
At this rate, they'll become fully literate just in time to escape the calamitous effects of the polar ice caps' melting due to your equally-disastrous environmental policies
Mr. DeLay!!! Mr. DeLay??!! What are you wearing?
At least he's not requesting a bathroom break
Yes, troops, it looks like that's a target on you guys. And, yes, the president's got you dead in his sights. And, yes, he's ready to wave goodbye. He's been waving this entire time, you see.
Give me grammar, or give me death
Forget her lack of qualifications. Do we really want a Supreme Court Justice that dresses this badly?
After years of rebuffing your advances, George, I'm ready to admit...I love you.
Damage Control Watch: In the Bubble or Off the Wagon?
Unintentionally Hilarious Photo of the Moment, vol. 58
Unintentionally Hilarious Photo of the Moment, vol. 57
Lining Up for Good News: This Week in the Job Market
low culture Exclusive: the Twin Towers Fell Fashionably Early!
September 2005: Black History Month for the White House
George Bush doesn't care about poor people
It's not the heat, it's the stupidity
John Roberts, Fuck Yeah!
Ergo, there is no "Federal" in "F.E.M.A."
I think I may need to better grasp the degree to which the press has turned on me?
To get at the store
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diet Coke (caffeine-free)
diet Coke (with Lime)
Cheese (American & Swiss)
Soy Milk, but not the Vanilla shit
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