Friday, May 30, 2014

Cool Shit 5/30

The Columbia River has been the scene of some interesting, secretive boats, and no one knows exactly what they're being used for...

Art heists! They've always fascinated me. Actually, the art world in general has always fascinated me.

I think the biggest surprise looking at this chart of where ceremonial pitches ended up from famous people, is Michael Jordan. This is a guy who actually attempted to play this sport at a professional level.

Love Dick Cavett. Love love love him. In fact, including this article about his worst show ever is just going to send me down the youtube rabbit hole of Dick Cavett show clips.

Deleted scenes from famous movies we're probably never going to see.

If you were afraid that Independence Day 2 was never going to be made, this news will delight you. If on the other hand you weren't afraid...

I've been following the Snowpiercer movie for quite some time, anticipating its American release, because the plot sounded so bats hit insane. And this first American trailer seems to confirm that. Unfortunately, it seems as though it's only going to get a very limited release.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Cool Shit 5/29

I don't know, I'm not a huge Tom Cruise fan so I can't comment too much on how his films would rank from worst to best. But you might be able to, so have at it.

Apparently, Spielberg toyed with the idea of creating a sequel to Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and even started pre-production on what the aliens would look like. I think I'm happy he scrapped his plans.

It used to be the summer was the graveyard of television, simply replaying the shows that ran during the other seasons. This is not the case anymore. Here are twelve shows you can and should watch this summer.

Stuff you may or may not have known about the movie, Escape from New York.

The Strain is a television show based on a book created by Guillermo del Toro. Let's hope that the show is better than the book, because the book was putrid. Unfortunately, I can't tell from this trailer whether it is better or not.

A look at how Edgar Wright directs comedies. I agree with many of the points the narrator makes, I'm just not sure he has to run down other comedies to do it. I'm also not sure whether his examples of the "bad" comedies he uses are indicative of the entire films. I realize a lot of Hollywood comedies are lazy, but still think they do work on a certain level.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Cool Shit 5/28

When it comes to beers, it seems like it's all about the hops these days. But can you tell the difference between the hops?

Want to see the Ghostbusters finale with the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man in Lego?

These maps kinda of make it look like Starbucks is a virus slowly taking over an organism. And who knows, maybe that's their business model.

I dare you to find a creepier phrase today than the phrase, "mosquito tornado."

So, a 17 story waterside was recently opened for human riders to test - and then immediately shut down because said testers were getting AIRBORNE. Sounds about right.

Ok, I like the idea of a driverless car, and so I hope Google continues with the technology and one day we'll have the option, but I will also say, if they look like this, I'm pretty much out.

Seems like not only do they want to create a flop with the new Point Break remake, they also want to fuck the mouth of the original. At least that's what this casting news suggests to me.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Cool Shit 5/27

I hope this concept of solar powered roadways doesn't end up the way of Tucker. But I have my doubts big business will see this as a viable solution; more of a competitor that must be squashed.

Most likely the closest you're going to get to feeling you're a professional tennis player, check out what it's like when Roger Federer wears Google Glass:

I always loved the concept of MiB - Men in Black. And then that stupid Will Smith movie came out and not only destroyed the legend, but also destroyed the opportunity for new people to be scared of the concept of men coming to visit you after a supposed UFO encounter. But that doesn't mean it still doesn't happen!

Craft beers is so early early 2014. Right now it's all about craft booze. And now you can check out some of the better small-batch distilleries.

Learn stuff you didn't know about Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

While it's hard to surf the internet without stumbling into a list of amazing places around the world, I still like to include them on the off chance people may have missed one or two and are updating their bucket lists.

Traveling around the country by plane, and need a drink? Check out these airport bars.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Cool Shit 5/23

Bruce Lee had what he called the "one inch punch," which could knock an opponent down from, obviously one inch away. How is this possible?

The story of the Sherpa tragedy at Everest, and a look at what it might mean for future climbing.

Has anyone connected HAARP with global warming? Because if not, I want to be the first on record to do so. And now with news that it might be shutting down, watch those temperatures plummet us back into the ice ages!

Are we that weird an animal that we have to have our foods artificially colored to enjoy them more? Regardless of just how dangerous dyes might be to us (and they're probably pretty dangerous) why can't we just eat a naturally colored food and be done with it?

The time travel in Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure mapped out in chart form.

A completely subjective ranking of snack chips.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Cool Shit 5/22

I feel bad for the Wachowskis, because this Jupiter Ascending is looking to be the bomb of the summer. And some part of me wants it to work, because I'm sure it has some interesting ideas and cool things, but if we've learned nothing for mega successful "blockbusters," it's that the audience needs time to immerse themselves in whatever world you're developing. That's why the Matrix worked. The audience learned about the Matrix along with Neo. It's also why the second two movies in that trilogy were a little messier - the plot came fast and furious, and didn't allow anyone time to react.

It's why the original trilogy of Star Wars worked. We learned about the dark side the same way Luke did. It's also why the second trilogy didn't work; Lucas crammed a bunch of shit together and hoped we would be dazzled by the effects...effects plenty of other movies were doing as well.

Story matters, people! Story matters!

Drones are only going to get more prevalent in our world. Learn as much about them now as you can.

Of course you want to see every face punch from Roadhouse:

The "27 Rule" for rock stars.

Enjoy this documentary on what it's like to hit up The Gathering of the Juggalos.

Shark Week is coming!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Cool Shit 5/21

The sports world is not innocent of conspiracy theories. Here are eight you may or may not have heard.

You smoothie addicts need a powerful blender, and some of you won't rest until you have the best. But which one is it: the Vitamix or the Ninja?

Summer is rapidly approaching here in the United States, which means road trips are coming back into fashion. Here are a few you may not have been thinking about - but should.

Planning an event and need to book some entertainment? Then this list of what popular music acts are charging will be invaluable to you.

Could True Detective, season 2 feature Jessica Chastain and Brad Pitt? I guess if both actors agreed to it.

Potential plot for Jurassic World. I realize many movies are simply a quick cash grab, but have we learned nothing from the evidence that suggests a monster movie with a cohesive script can succeed even more than expectations? Because this story sounds downright insane, and possibly co-authored by a 4 year old.

Like bourbon? Then make sure these 12 are on your wish list.

A river, underwater, in Mexico. Yes, this exists.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Cool Shit 5/20

I guess if you enjoy gore and disturbing material, this list of 17 horror movies that are tough to sit through will be right up your alley.

This is less about a "secret menu" at McDonald's, and more about "how can we hack McDonald's foods and make them even worse for you."

Have we been contacted by aliens life from another planet and we just don't know it? Behold, the Wow signal.

Watch a thunderstorm form on the plains of Eastern Wyoming...

Cool video that lets you know how long it takes to see the monster from famous movies.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Cool Shit 5/19

Just enjoy this clip of Nicholas Cage coming out on a BBC television talk show. It takes a few seconds to get there, but you won't be sorry. Also, apparently cocaine is really awesome.

While this sounds great, and I guess could potentially lead humanity to a concept of immortality, I'm not getting my hopes up just yet, since the headline is suggesting a "theory" "proves" something, which we all should know is impossible.

A list of the ten best monster movies. And I have to admit, while it's obviously subjective (unless we all agree to hold Variety magazine as the #1 expert in monster movies, and that's something I'm just not comfortable with), it's a good list.

If you enjoy the entire Disney "experience," you will probably enjoy these stories about the corporation, and the things that make it specifically Disney.

If nothing else, Christopher Nolan tackles interesting concepts for his films. And while I just saw Batman Rises this weekend, and felt it was a mess, it won't stop me for getting excited about Interstellar, his latest movie:

The Coen brothers next project could be about a 1950s era Hollywood detective.

Neil DeGrasse Tyson shoes off his intellectual a bunch on Twitter. Here are 25 of his tweets that might make you think. Or laugh.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Cool Shit 5/16

Hey, even alcoholics need to get away sometimes, so here are ten locations where they would feel right at home.

I like the idea of Chipotle using author statements/quotes/whatevers on their serving utensils, but also agree with the author here about the "messaging" of some of the statements. I don't know if it's Chipotle or the authors choosing (I assume Chipotle), but there's no reason to create hypocrisy with the statements. Just pick random shit the authors wrote and move along. Though I will say being a fan of Saunders, I want to believe he's being sardonic with the quote he's attributed to in the article.

We are moving ever so closer to grilling season. So Michael Symon's 10 tips on crafting the perfect hamburger should be required reading. FOR EVERYONE.

Some cool words to ponder from Stanley Kubrick on how to live life. Or at least how to get something more out of it.

It's hard to tell what this Bentley ad shot on an iPhone 52 and then edited on an IPad is selling - Bentleys or Apple products.

Conspiracy theories are fun to talk about, but not when they are influencing legitimate plans to help people. Unless that's what THEY want you to believe.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Cool Shit 5/15

Cool before/after gif of just how they go about creating effects with CGI.

Care for a track by track rundown review of the latest Black Keys album?

A look at 20 different beer labels and the secrets they hold.

So apparently that Gravity movie was pretty ingenious. After reading this article it's hard not to  appreciate Alfonso Cuaron and what he went through to go about creating a realistic movie in outer space.

Continuing with the pesticide/herbicide dangers from the past few days, here's a list of fruits you should and shouldn't be buying from your local supermarket, unless they have an "organic" label.

True Romance is 20 years old! Take a look back and dive into the possible psyche of how and why the film was made.

How long before we have driverless cars? If Google had it's way, it would be less time than you think. See what they're doing with them and how they want to own the roads.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Cool Shit 5/14

Don't forget to check out our FOX Fall season preview.

Into burgers? Traveling around the country? Then this list of burgers around the country you should try is a great list for you!

This time-lapse of the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley starts getting nuts around the one minute mark:

An awesome visual history of video games.

The real story behind the weight loss reality program Biggest Loser. You might not believe this, but apparently things weren't what they seemed on the set.

Learning more about Steve Albini, a "recording engineer" with principles.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

FOX Fall Preview Reviews

A look at some of trailers of shows that will be seen on FOX this fall. A couple quick thoughts...


Oh good, it's like Cruel Intentions with soon-to-be superheroes! Don't you just see all these characters in the lunchroom moping around? And really, there a big desire out there for a Commissioner Gordon origin story? And why do we need to jam him into the Batman origin story? I realize FOX wants to out comic ABC/Disney but I feel there are other ways to go about it. Also, I'm already dreading the season 3 season finale when Donal Logue (obviously the only interesting character in this show) to be killed off by teen Joker.

Wayward Pines:

Lots of academy award nominees up in this joint. Kinda makes you wonder what they need to do to get over the hump and get that Oscar. Also, does this seemingly go from Pushing Daisies to Lost in about 3 seconds in the trailer? That frightens me just a little. I'll definitely start watching, but I don't want it to be a a burrito of hokie wrapped around a filling of dread.


Did Terrence Howard invest in bad real estate? Pyramid scheme? Failed novelty restaurant chain based on Hustle and Flow (Hustle and Chow)? Whatever the reason, looks like he's hedging his bets and starring in 2 FOX shows, to keep the income steady. Also stereotypes ahoy here, no?


Hey, does anyone remember that FOX show with Greg Kinnear where he played a lawyer that was a drunk and rarely shaved and liked hookers and drugs and had questionable ethics, but when it came right down to it he was a damn good lawyer? You know, it was on like 2 weeks ago? And then it got canceled. Well, here's a show totally nothing like that because Rainn Wilson is a cop. Seriously he even looks like Kinnear in this.


Apparently FOX only watched the first 3 episodes of AMC's The Killing, and then just assumed it continued to be great, and decided to find their own European murder mystery show to remake. Hopefully this one too will try to tie in terrorism, American Indian backed casinos and telling the audience you'll find out who the killer is and then not tell us.


Egyptian vampires. What could possibly go wrong with this show. I give it about 6 weeks (of course I was wrong about Sleepy Hollow last year, but I think Sleepy Hollow at least realizes it can't take itself seriously. This one...?


Hmmmm...This show started at NBC last year, and wasn't picked up, and then FOX came around and gave it a second chance. And...I can kind of see why it wasn't picked up before. Now, hopefully it will do well and FOX can help shepherd it, but from the trailer it looks like Mulaney is a better writer than performer. And i'm really not sure about the supporting cast around him either. The tone of the show feels off, and while Martin Short and Elliot Gould obviously lend a bunch of comedic gravitas to the production, we already have a pants bit with Short, which doesn't bode well for the rest of the show. I mean, Short was doing pants bits in the 80s! I want this to do well, so I hope I'm wrong, but the preview didn't wow me.


A reality show about starting a new civilization? Based on a Dutch show? I don't know if I see this working. It feels as though reality television has been pushed to the basic cable channels (Bravo, A&E, NatGeo, etc.) while the bigger networks attempt to reclaim scripted entertainment.

Last Man on Earth

This looks terrible. I like Will Forte, but I'm not sure this is the right vehicle for him. Also, when do you think we find out he's not the last person on Earth? End of the first episode? Second episode?

Cool Shit 5/13

So with the melting of the Antarctic Ice Sheet, it might be time to say good bye to Miami. Also some of New York.

Apparently Casey Kasem is missing. Let's just hope he isn't dead, and that the announcer doesn't announce it coming out of an uptempo song...

If I had a nickel for every "the Zodiac killer was my father" story I've read over the years...

Quotes are always a good source of some instant inspiration; check out these 99 if you're feeling in need of it.

Do you think the herbicides and pesticides in our food will be like the tobacco in cigarettes 50 years from now? 25 years from now? I realize it's anecdotal evidence, but since trying to at least increase my organic/local food intake, and decrease the big corporation produced food, I have felt healthier. Your mileage may vary of course.

It's philosophical questions like this, merging with the rising technological advances that are going to plague us for years to come. As much as we want to attempt to break the world down into simple heaps of data, it doesn't work like that. Organic chaos will always exist. Or to put it simply, I don't want a robot to make decisions for me based on statistic analysis.

New Gathering of the Juggalos this summer means there's a new commercial for it. 23 minutes! I got to 3:21. I dare you to do better:

Monday, May 12, 2014

Cool Shit 5/12

If you haven't checked out my last post about awesome album closing songs, you definitely should.

Using the office restroom is much more political than you might think. Don't blow your chance at a promotion because you don't know how to properly poop in a semi-public setting.

Simple Internet keyboard shortcuts that will make your day that much better.

Rare natural phenomena that has been caught on camera.

I didn't take time to peruse this top 100 science fiction movies because it's from Esquire, and something tells me they're not the world's best authorities on science fiction. But I include it in case some of you want to call them on the carpet.

Awesome stories from World War 2 that few people know about.

Oh good, for some inane reason, Prometheus is getting a sequel, showing that Hollywood executives think there is still a shred of decency in the Alien movies that they can destroy.

More television comic book adaptations! This time it's Constantine, which was a movie with Keenu Reeves that was, in a word, atrocious. Now we'll see what NBC comes up with:

Friday, May 9, 2014

My Favorite Album-Closing Songs

A friend on Facebook has been actually using the stupid site in a clever and socially mature way; instead of hammering it with political beliefs and baby pictures, he has instead chosen to use it to interact with others and invoke discussion and debate, mostly about music. In a world of snap judgements and one line opinions, this is refreshing to an old soul like me. (After all, my motto is why use 10 words when you can write a novel and subtly beat someone over the head with prose?)

His most recent question posed was to list your five favorite "ending tracks to an album." A seemingly impossible task. I mean, off the top of my head I can list 10 without thinking too much, and then how do I take those 10 and cut it in half? And why?

At least that's what I asked myself, and since I have this blog that three or four people read, I figured I would include my entire list of album closers that I feel are stellar...hopefully this will at least introduce a few people to some new music and get people talking. Feel free to leave your favorites in the comments below. These are offered with no order in mind...

Burn Down the Mission 
Tumbleweed Connection - Elton John

I realize that Elton John has become our generation's Liberace, but with that label comes the talent (seriously take a second, and, ignore everything you think you know about Liberace and just appreciate this:

Back in the 70s, pre-disney songs and electric drum beats, Elton John knew how to write a song. If you don't believe me, please check out Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy,  and Madman Across the Water. All fantastic albums with the songs you've probably heard a million times on the radio. But there's a reason you've heard them that many times on the radio, right? Because they're classics.

But one of my favorites, and it comes off another great Elton John album, The Tumbleweed Connection, is Burn Down the Mission. Starting off simply, it packs the emotional punch you want in an album closer, as a way to cleanse your palate of what you just went through with the album.

Wilderness Heart - Black Mountain

Sadie takes us to  the crossroads of hope and sadness. There are few better ways to end an album than with the open endedness of this song. Stoner rock from up north. Not as popular as they should be.

Vs. - Pearl Jam

I think Vs. is the album that proved that Pearl Jam not only was around for the long haul, but that they had more to offer than the dreaded "alternative" rock. Indifference is a great introduction to the expanded universe that Pearl Jam went on to create.

Gimme the Car
Violent Femmes - Violent Femmes

Enjoy the ride this song offers. As a Violent Femmes song you know it's going to have weird sexual references and probably be about pain, but still, this song can throw just about anyone for a loop as it almost kinda sorta juxtaposes the sexual story of trying to hook up with the story of a kid standing up to the authoritative figure of his father. So there's that. I assume few people make it to the end of this album however, as they last right up until the "Why Can't I get just one Fuck" song before passing out.

Waiting on a Friend
Tattoo You - The Rolling Stones

Usually described as the best bar band in rock and roll, The Rolling Stones also knew how to write a nice song. Though this album is mostly made up of outtakes, which suggests there wasn't too much thought about the order or flow of music, I still like this "comedown" song after a night a heavy boozing, no? Feels like a great soundtrack ender to walk off into the sunset with.

Slapped Actress
Stay Positive - The Hold Steady

We are all performing for one another like actors on a grand stage. This final reveal couldn't come at a better time than at the end of the record, regardless of how uneven the record is. One of my favorite bands, The Hold Steady sing a lot about what it means to age.

Suite: Judy Blue Eyes
So Far - Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Possibly one of the greatest songs ever recorded. And CSN&Y simply drop it off at the end of their classic album, So Far. While not a huge fan of these guys all together (I'll take my Neil Young in a tumbler, neat) the harmonies here are hard to hate.

Heaven 90210
Saturation - Urge Overkill

A great forgotten album (and band) of the 90s, Urge Overkill had a unique delivery and a fun take on music. That they could easily mix great musicianship with sardonic, pop culture infused musings, only hurts more that they aren't known by more people. Again, lumped into the "alternative" scene simply because rock critics and journalists of the nineties apparently weren't very descriptive, Urge Overkill sang like we were all in on the joke. And even when trying some sincerity, they couldn't completely ignore what got them to the dance.

Rock and Roll Suicide
The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust - David Bowie

There are few songs better to close an album about the end of the world than Rock and Roll Suicide. Maybe that stupid REM song, but I don't know if that was at the end of the album it was on because I'm not an REM fan and there's no way that song is better than this one at signifying the end of the world and if you thought that or thought that I thought that then you're stupid. If you have never listened to The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars in its entirety, I ask that you please do, right now, if possible.

Ruby Vroom - Soul Coughing

Soul Coughing will always hold a special place in my heart. Chaotic music that still somehow held a melody together, Ruby Vroom is a cacophony of difficult music to listen to most of the time, until we get to the final track... a simple love song "duet" between Mike Doughty and someone on an answering machine. I like to think this entire album is what heroin feels like, and this is the whimsical come down period. It hurts so much when Mike Doughty denounces Soul Coughing as something he never wanted to do and was basically forced to, since this album had a profound impact on me when it came out. Difficult for many, sublime for some, it's last moment is such a fist-in-the-face of sweetness after a steady diet of unorganized despair that I still am never ready for it and I've listened to the album hundreds of times.

B-Boy Bouillabaisse 
Paul's Boutique - Beastie Boys

What better way to end an album than with, basically another entire album. Paul's Boutique, littered with "New York-ness" ends with this opus, which pretty much encapsulates, in nine parts, how the Beastie Boys came to be. 9 parts!

(Sorry, couldn't find it on Youtube, here's a link to it on Spotify. But seriously just jam the whole album. I know you have it. I KNOW YOU HAVE IT. It's required to own this album if you ever want to discuss music. Sorry. Those are the rules.)

Muswell Hillbilly
Muswell Hillbillies - The Kinks

Nothing changes; it all stays the same. The poor stay poor; the rich get richer.

How Many More Times
Led Zeppelin I - Led Zeppelin

There aren't too many albums that stay as consistently awesome as Led Zeppelin I. How Many More Times isn't an end; it's simply a bash on the head to tell you what is still yet to come.

In the Court of the Crimson King
In Court of the Crimson King - King Crimson

One of the greatest songs by one of the greatest prog rock bands. That it showed up in Children of Men only makes it better and that movie better.

Heart of the Sunrise
Fragile - Yes

More prog rock. If you need a good example of what prog rock is, Heart of the Sunrise is as good an example as any. Odd timing structures, sweeping genre changes, bizarre imagery. I know people make fun of Yes (and they deserve a lot of it) but they were strong musicians and probably offered more to music in general than we give them credit for. Fragile was one of the first CDs I owned, so it holds a special place in my heart. Heart of the Sunrise isn't my favorite track off the album, but it is a perfect way to close the insanity that precedes it, taking all the pieces that were laid out and bringing them back together to build something new.

Supper's Ready 
Foxtrot - Genesis

And you thought Heart of the Sunrise was the pinnacle of prog rock pretentiousness. I'll go out on a limb and suggest Genesis may have found the apex with Supper's Ready, the 22+ minute magnum. Again, it's like closing an album with another album. But I love it, and I won't apologize.

Brother John
Four - Blues Traveler

I make no apologies for enjoying Blues Traveler either, and enjoying this song. Yes, there's a lot of harmonica in Blues Traveler music and it can get a little weary after awhile; this song will remind you of what it can offer when executed well.

Glory Box
Dummy - Portishead

Blood spilling from your veins...pooling on the floor. Committing a murder. Planning a murder. Witnessing a murder. All things I would use to describe this song (and Portishead in general) if I were writing for Pitchfork.

Dither - moe.

A straightforward drug trip song. It's probably tougher to pull off than you think. But this is a great song to end an album with, or a late night, or a bad trip. It's got the highs and lows you will need to come down.

A Little Bit Ugly
Devil's Night Out - Mighty Mighty Bosstones

After a full album of skunking, you need a slight reprieve. That this song could be considered a reprieve, should tell you all you need to know about the Bosstones. (Related: if you're unfamiliar with the Bosstones, I implore your to listen to Hope I Never Lose My Wallet.)

Southtown Girls
Boys and Girls in America - The Hold Steady

A tired, world weary hush falls over the singer. Pushed forth by guitar, drums and keys, he grasps the strength...the strength to remember, the strength to feel it all over again, and to share the tale.

It's entering the middle ages at its finest.

Muffin Man
Bongo Fury - Frank Zappa et al

There's not much you can say about Frank Zappa, other than you know the last song he plays is the last as he wasn't a fan of encores. This "album" is a mix of studio and live tracks and might not even be considered a proper album, but whatever. Muffin Man is awesome.

Knights of Cydonia
Black Holes and Revelations - Muse

How do you end an epic album you've pushed to create pop music supremacy? You write the modern day version of an epic western. This is simply just a spoonful of crazy to end your meal of Muse.

Nineteen Hundred and Eighty Five
Band on the Run - Wings

Full disclosure: I'm a Paul guy, and that includes his post Beatles catalog. And I believe the Band on the Run album is a classic.

Bold As Love
Axis: Bold As Love - Jimi Hendrix

It's probably easy to say that any Hendrix song at the end of an album would qualify for this list, but Bold As Love somehow seems somehow more appropriate. Less about the guitar work, it starts as a full fledged song with Hendrix sing-speaking verses, before diving into an instrumental crescendo, allowing us one more toe dip into what made the album so fantastic, and letting us go (and most likely starting the album all over again from the beginning).

Steal the Crumbs
Anodyne - Uncle Tupelo

Just a pretty song from Uncle Tupelo. Sure, their break up gave us Wilco and Son Volt, but can you imagine a world where they could have gotten along and kept the band together?

(Couldn't find it on youtube: Here's the Spotify link.)

Pigs on the Wing (Part 2)
Animals - Pink Floyd

The second bookend that holds together my favorite Pink Floyd album. There's not much better music that establishes and then holds a mood than the music on Animals.

Killer Parties 
Almost Killed Me - The Hold Steady

The Hold Steady again. I don't know, this song feels like a wrap up to me; a look back of the events of a stupid life that someone managed to somehow survive. There's no better placement than the end.

Cowgirl in the Sand
Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere - Neil Young and Crazyhorse

Sure, everyone knows Down by the River, but did you know that wasn't the best song on Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere? Mr, Young saved the best for last, a sprawling, messy song about love and possibly sexual liberation, and how the two can be mistakenly intertwined. At least that's my interpretation.

Midnite Vultures - Beck

The whole album is a one spastic fuck fest, with electronic beats and beeps subbing in for thrusts and moans, leading up to the ultimate proposal song, done only as Beck can do. I feel Beck's discography fits in perfectly with a person of my generation, and could be a soundtrack to our lives. The awkwardness of finding and going for the beauty found everywhere this song portrays only strengthens that belief.

Tomorrow Never Knows
Revolver - The Beatles

How a song can both immediately close the door and possibly one of the best albums out there, and open the door to music that changed the game forever is something that will probably never happen again. This is one more reason why I believe the Beatles are underrated still.

A Day in the Life
Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band - The Beatles

Perfectly encapsulating what the Beatles were are and will be with one song.

How A Resurrection Really Feels
Separation Sunday - The Hold Steady

What better way to end an album filled with biblical allusions and references than with a song about Hallelujah (the kids call her Holly) coming back from...well something I guess.

Cool Shit 5/9

So I don't know how long it's going to last on the Internet, but you may have heard (if you're a big nerd like myself) that Topher Grace recut the Star Wars prequels to make better sense. Well, now you can take a look at it:

Just in case you needed to know how a silencer worked on a gun.

Finally! A how to video on how to build a time machine!

How to Build a Time Machine - Teaser from Jay Cheel on Vimeo.

Enjoy a look at how the 2014 Fall Television season hopes to line up.

I want to believe this news fight from Syrian television is real, but it takes crew members so long to react once the table gets broken that I have my suspicions. Regardless, anything like this happening on Meet the Press would get me to watch. And don't think the MtP producers aren't taking notes...

Cher and Wu-Tang, together at last.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Cool Shit 5/8

In honor of tonight's NFL Football draft, here is a look back of some of Mel Kiper's more interesting observations on some of the players being drafted. I guess the adage of "say it loud and say it with conviction, and people will buy it" is on display here.

Seems like if you're a Led Zeppelin fan, you're going to have to get your wallet out again, since there's going to be ANOTHER remastered series of CDs coming out, curated by the one and only Jimmy Page. And if you're a Led Zeppelin fan I don't have to tell you who that is!

It's almost offensive with all this recent Lost stuff coming out with the creators. We're still discussing this series, and the creators/writers/showrunners are still suggesting their vision was clear and the ending was finite, which...I struggle with critiquing people about their vision of a show, but come on - these guys took a great series, layered it with many complexities throughout the early seasons, got us all hooked, and then ran out of steam at the end trying to come up with something profound. In the end, we got two dudes, duking it out on an island because there was some blowy stuff and a bunch of people went to a church and died. If that's the way you wanted to end it...fine, but don't pretend it was some gran vision you had from the beginning and that it all worked out. And yes, I'm a tab bitter, because no college writing professor worth anything would have given that treatment anything higher than a C-.

Somehow, Trader Joe's has made us all think their products are infinitely superior than other supermarkets, when all they are are repackaged. And yet even saying that out loud, I still think that way. While I still get a little bummed that the store takes away products seemingly on a whim (their monkey trail mix with banana chips is delicious, yet sadly extinct), I feel they do it to release new products that have the same quality. While I'm not sure I can agree that the most popular items of 2013 are MY most popular items, I can see why they might be to the rest of the buying public.

If we learn one thing from this oral history of the XFL, it's maybe you want to spend a little more time developing the business plan of a concept that is going to affect billions of dollars in the economy. When climbing a mountain, you don't start at the top immediately, or you're going to fall.

I enjoy the crowd funding ways to raise money the internet has spawned, because it has a very grassroots feel, and eliminates the middle man (banks) casting judgement on what the world may or may not need. And it gives us the opportunity to get behind a project we believe in. So even though these ideas might not be based entirely in the realm of plausibility, if you want to invest, you can. Just remember, it might take more than 20,000 grand or so to defy the laws of physics.

While this chart doesn't include EVERY movie (no Godfathers?) it still is a neat look at how movies are perceived both by critics and an audience, and see where they agree.

I contend that the Star Was prequels actually got worse as they were released, meaning Phantom Menace was the best of the lot. Liam Neeson has a lot to do with that, but it's also because it of course didn't have to deal with the "relationship" between Padme and Anakin. Don't agree? Well, enjoy this look at what Attack of the Clones really was like with this Honest Trailer of it:

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Cool Shit 5/7

Need to bulk a bit? Commit a crime, get thrown into prison and learn how to lift some weights!

The importance of encryption is only going to grow as we move into the future. Here are some simple steps if you want to start thinking about protecting yourself right now.

In the moment, the Now That's What I Call Music CD compilations are usually met with disdain by music fans, as they offer little more than the tinny, gum ball pop heard on the radio. But if you take the series as a while, which has recently released its 50th(!) compilation, it's a great archive of what pop music has been, and how it continues to evolve. Here's a look at every song released under its umbrella.

More information about Wu-Tang's release of one album museum tour - this coming out of Morocco.

Oh and here's a snippet of the album:

Care to read about Monica Lewinsky's side of the sordid affair?

Yesterday I gave tribute to the United States' national parks. Today, Canada gets a turn!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Cool Shit 5/6

Well I don't know about you, but it's hard for me to refute inter dimensional travel after reading these examples.

The United States' National Parks are kinda cool. Need proof? Here are 59 pictures of the 59 parks.

Can't wait for your local record store to get the new Black Keys album? Try out this new "streaming" technology and listen to it right now!

Familiar with subscription boxes? For a fee, once a month (possibly more), you will receive a sample of something, whether it's food, cleaning products, etc. Not a bad concept. So here are 20 you might want to check out.

I don't care if it's fake or not, you can't not chuckle at this. Dog does NOT want to get in the water:

Monday, May 5, 2014

Cool Shit 5/5

While a somewhat leading title to the article, it's always interesting to hear about "lost" or "scrapped" albums by artists. That Britney Spears went through a period with one is even more so.

What is the guy who thought up and created Loose Change, the 9/11 truther "documentary" doing these days? Pretty much about as much as you would expect.

I'm really beginning to question the lists made at Flavorwire, and suspect not much thought is being put into them. This list of "most frightening gangsters on film" include 3 characters who aren't gangsters. And while it has Christopher Walken on the list, it's for his role in True Romance, NOT King of New York, where he was a much scarier gangster. And why, since they obviously wanted to include Gary Oldman in some capacity, didn't they pick HIS character from True Romance, instead of from The Professional, where he plays a cop? This is just a bad list. And that's why I'm including it. For its awfulness.

Read about what some suggest is the most innovative restaurant in the world.

Not sure why we need Stephen Hawking to tell us the threat of A. I. when we've all seen Terminator and The Matrix.

If you're a Stanley Kubrick fan, you will marvel at all the things you can buy inspired by his movies.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Cool Shit 5/2

Read about how much pesticides you're ingesting with your food.

Care to see the new Black Keys video?

...or maybe you'd like to see 50 fencers take on three in a battle to the DEATH?

There will be a moment, probably sometime soon, when we push the modern laws of physics to their breaking point in our quest for the best roller coaster ride. After looking at these new 6 roller coasters, it may happen this summer.

Hassling the ice men. All they want to do is provide their treats to kids! (Of course, types out like that may be the reason they've been getting hassled). Of course without the existence of the ice cream man, we would have never gotten this - the pinnacle of Van Halen pretentiousness, mixed with the pinnacle of Van Halen's awesomeness:

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Cool Shit 5/1

Listen, I realize this story about the high potential for solar storm that could wipe out our electric grid has to be questioned, especially when it's found on, but I'm not going to be the one that held information from all of you when it happens. Plus, it suggests 90% of the American population could die if this were to happen!

Also, I figured I'll link this trailer to a documentary called Urban Danger, as it will but the fear of Jesus in you even more!

Trying to answer the burning questions on top of everyone's minds, like what happened to Miss Cleo from the Psychic Hotline?

Cool concept cars that have been built over the years.

Donald Sterling joins a nice little group of people that have been banned for life from things. Mostly people fucking around on SNL.

Nice to see MIT putting some effort into the things that matter, like how to win at Rock, Paper, Scissors.