July rambling #2: Northwest disasters and Taxman v. Batman

Putin on the RIZLast Week Tonight with John Oliver: Stadiums, a ripoff for taxpayers; bail; and poisonous mandatory minimum prison sentence.

Laci Green (no relation): Systemic Racism for Dummies.

Muslim Groups Step In To Help Black Churches Burned In Wave Of Arson.

Why it’s never ‘the right time’ to discuss gun control.

Wil Wheaton: living with depression and anxiety.

Jeff Sharlet: I went to Skid Row to report on Charly “Africa” Keunang, “an unarmed homeless man held down and shot six times by Los Angeles police. I had to get to know the people of whom I was asking these questions.”

Conquering 100 fears, one at a time.

‘I’m No Longer Afraid’: 35 Women Tell Their Stories About Being Assaulted by Bill Cosby, and the Culture That Wouldn’t Listen.

Of all people, Jimmy Kimmel on Cecil the lion I was also hoping it wasn’t an ugly American.

Jaquandor: Keeping Ahead of the Smiths: Random Thoughts on the Minimum Wage.

Daylight Saving Time Is Terrible: Here’s a Simple Plan to Fix It. “Losing another hour of evening daylight isn’t just annoying. It’s an economically harmful policy with minimal energy savings.”

12 Lost American Slangisms From The 1800s. Slangisms?

An earthquake will destroy a sizable portion of the coastal Northwest. The question is when. Obviously, in response, a dildo epidemic hits Portland (OR) power lines.

Cousin Lisa discovers Finding Friends Through a Shared Vision.

Patti LuPone Offers Five Rules of Theatre Etiquette, Starting with “Respect”. 1, 2, and 5 also apply to the movies.

Ringo Starr turned 75 this month. Other drummers talk about him, from Ringo’s 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame presentation on HBO, plus Ringo Reveals The Secret Of His Distinctive Rhythm from CONAN on TBS, 2012.

“For half a century, Beach Boys songs have promised unending summers of fun in the sun — not at all like the life founding Beach Boy Brian Wilson actually led for many years.”

Woodstock 69: The Lost Performances. The Band, Canned Heat, Joan Baez, Crosby Stills Nash, Janis Joplin, Melanie.

Amy has resharpened her poetry pencil: Bossa (Getz, Gilberto, Jobim).

SamuraiFrog’s Weird Al countdown: 30-21.

The Beatles’ Taxman Vs. the Batman theme song (Mashup). Yes, The music of the Harrison piece was inspired by the theme song for the popular 1960s TV series.

God Bless America, sung by John Wayne, the cast of Bonanza, Rowan & Martin, and many others, some of them actual singers.

Evanier didn’t like the movie version of Driving Miss Daisy but linked to the new Angela Lansbury-James Earl Jones version on PBS.

“Loosen the Ties and Put Some Sweat on Them”: 12 Angry Men (1957).

Ken Levine writes a spec Dick van Dyke Show script, found in Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4. Levine’s snarky response to the reader feedback, DVDS writer Bill Persky’s comments, and Levine’s final thoughts.

Happy 75th Birthday, Alex Trebek! His 6 Funniest Moments on Jeopardy!

Speaking of natal days, the claim that “Happy Birthday to You,” a song written in 1893, is somehow under copyright until 2030, is very likely hooey.

Chuck Miller on Reading the movie Ant-Man. It seems that ADD enjoyed the film.

The Unknown Assistant of Carl Barks.

Just Another Day at Hanna-Barbera.

Now I Know: Why Do Coupons Have a Cash Value of a Fraction of a Cent? and The Big Bang Theory, in Theory and Pop Goes the Kernel and Control-Alt-Delete.

When did I become “that” neighbor?

Muppets: Rain fall and Federal Housing Administration ads and The Muppet Show opening, in German, and, most importantly, the 10-minute pitch reel for the ABC TV show coming this fall.

This is troubling: I remember the lyrics to theme of The Real McCoys, a TV show I haven’t seen in well over 40 years.
homophones

GOOGLE ALERT (me)

Arthur@AmeriNZ answers my questions about closeted gay performers, in a different era, and flags and national discussions and candidates for US President, with a specific Hillary scenario.

The Renaissance Geek was complaining about what he thought was a boring post, so I asked him a question. This turned into THE FIRST EVER ASK EDDIE ANYTHING!

SamuraiFrog likes But It’s Alright, too.

Jaquandor on Neil Simon on how to finish a day’s work. He also tells bad jokes.

Pooey! Others’ significant others, and my roommates

I ain’t gonna work and I ain’t gonna study, Just gonna toke up with my buddy.

roommatesI believe this is the end of the Ask Roger Anything questions for this round:

New York Erratic queries:

What have been your best and worst room mates?

Oh, I’ve had a LOT of bad roommates. In New Paltz, NY, I had two guys, both named Mike, who, for some reason, hated each other. I mean, throwing chairs at each other disdain. I ended having to play interlocutor for them.

Any of my roommates who smoked inside; that was a drag. (Pardon the pun.)

I had one roomie who wasn’t bad, but his estranged wife calling at 4 a.m. was no fun.

I was in loco parentis for a 17-year-old when I was 25. THAT was a mistake. And the third roommate was an artist, so when I’d walk into our apartment, I’d get yelled at by people I didn’t even know because it made some nude model in the living room, who I didn’t even know would be there, cold.

Romantic entanglements muddle the question. There have been people who were great in sharing the space, but emotional stuff got in the way. Or conversely, the Wife, who is otherwise great, but puts away my stuff so that, not only I can’t find it, but SHE cannot.

My best roomie was probably my first one in college, Ron, who was tidy without being oppressive, and we left each other’s stuff alone.

When someone has a pooey spouse or SO, what do you do? Butt in, say nothing, or some other option? Why?.

Pooey? Really? What does that mean?

Well, it depends on what way they are “pooey” AND how my friend feels about it. Are they just loud, or obnoxious, or have crummy politics? I can overlook that.

If my friend has a jerk for a boyfriend, I’m not going to say anything, unless he/she brings it up. That is unless I believe the friend is in danger of being harmed, or kids in their care might be imperiled.

I’ve actually been in the situation a few times, usually women in relationships with men who were not worthy of their time and energy, though the reverse has also been true. The guys were emotionally abusive, but not physically.

There’s always that tricky line between being helpful, and being patronizing. Adults have the right to make bad decisions unless real damage is possible. And what is “real damage”? One tends to decide this on a case-by-case basis.

Now, I have also been involved when someone was actually abusive and was supportive in getting her away from him.

You wanna give me some examples?
***
Arthur inquires:

What ONE thing always pops into you head when you think of your university years?

For some reason, the phrase “your university years” made me wish I had a tweed jacket.

Anyway, it is the college alma mater:

New, New, New Paltz…
New, New, New Paltz…
New Paltz is good enough for me.
I ain’t gonna work and I ain’t gonna study,
Just gonna toke up with my buddy,
New Paltz is good enough for me!!!!!!

OK, it wasn’t the alma mater. In fact, I could not tell you the NAME of the alma mater, if you offered me a million dollars. THIS song, though, was well known on campus in the 1970s, since it was such a druggy school, and, as it turns out, it still is. This news surprised me because the narrative is that the administration was “cleaning up” the school.
***
Thanks to all of you who participated!

MOVIE REVIEW: Spy

In general, I didn’t find the film Spy laugh out loud funny.

spy-posterThis, I suppose, is an embarrassing admission for someone who purports to care about movies: I have not seen, all the way through, any James Bond movie. I’ve seen bits and pieces on TV occasionally, mostly from the Sean Connery era, but never from beginning to end.

There, I said it.

Yet I recognized the spy movie tropes that ran through the movie comedy Spy, which I saw with my friend Mary at the Spectrum Theatre in Albany a few weeks ago.

Not familiar with the level of violence in an R-rated comedy, I was briefly taken aback by the first good joke, which involved the failure to take one’s allergy medication. Once that happened, I said, “OK, so it’ll be THAT kind of movie,” and I went with it.

This is the story of behind-the-scenes CIA analyst Susan Cooper (Melissa McCartney), who fed information through the earbud of super slick spy Bradley Long (Jude Law). But when Bradley is feared dead, and another top field spy, Rick Ford (Jason Strathan), goes rogue, Susan convinces her boss Elaine Crocker (Allison Janney) to allow her to go undercover to infiltrate the world of a deadly arms dealer, Rayna Boyanov (Rose Byrne).

I didn’t find the frumpy aliases and clothing the agency gave to Susan, on assignment in various cities, all that hilarious. More humorous was when Susan bought her own clothes and Rayna found them inadequate.

In general, I didn’t find the film laugh-out-loud funny. I’m told that Strathan, e.g., is playing on the roles in series for which he’s best known – Transformers, Fast & Furious, The Expendables, etc, – except that I’d NEVER seen him in ANY movie. And with all the double-crossing and triple crossing, I was a tad muddled in the middle about who was on whose side. I confused one dark-haired woman with another for a time.

Yet I enjoyed the movie as a whole, as an empowerment treatise, that the “behind the curtains” spy got to ultimately shine. The character of Nancy (Miranda Hart), who was Susan’s backup person, was appropriately awkward. Rose Byrne, who played the Bridezilla in Bridesmaids, also produced and directed by Paul Feig, was even more over the top here. Actually, the best comedy may have been in the end credits, which much of the audience missed, naturally, detailing Susan’s future spy exploits.

I’m glad I went, and I understand why the critics liked Spy, but I doubt The Wife would have enjoyed the language and violence.

C is for comic strip word creation: sealioning

“Sea-Lioning is an Internet slang term referring to intrusive attempts at engaging an unwilling debate opponent…”

sealion2014-09-19-1062

There’s a nifty comic strip called Wondermark, which began in April 2003, created by David Malki ! -yes, he spells his name with an exclamation point. “It’s considered an honorific, and used in the same manner as ‘Jr.’ or ‘Ph.D.’: there’s a single space before it. The exclamation point is not pronounced — though many have tried, often with hilarious results.”

He released The Terrible Sea Lion in September 2014, and it became an instant sensation. Less than a month later, “Sea Lion” had been verbed.

In October, it was initially adopted by gamers as “the experience of posting about #Gamergate and then being haunted by endlessly persistent entitled jerks.”

By December, the meaning had expanded. From Know Your Meme: “Sea-Lioning is an Internet slang term referring to intrusive attempts at engaging an unwilling debate opponent by feigning civility and incessantly requesting evidence to back up their claims.” Here’s why sealioning is bad.

The Encyclopedia Dramatica explains How to Troll Someone by “Sealioning”

Basically just calmly and politely question every single thing a person says and don’t stop. Make no assertions but refuse to leave them alone until they rage-quit. Don’t give them any excuse to say you are mad or accuse you of harassment, but respond to everything they say in a drawn-out fashion like a pseudointellectual 13-year old boy and end it with a request to further explain the contradictions in their position. This may not sound like trolling but it drives some people… mad.

I have been subject to that in my Times Union newspaper blog from time to time, but never here, even when the content was EXACTLY the same.

(Hat tip to Daniel Van Riper.)

David writes: “You can feel free to re-post any comics from this site on your blog, Facebook, Tumblr, etc. without asking permission, so long as you include a link back to wondermark.com as well!

See also: Arguing with idiots online wearing you down? YOU NEED FALLACY REF!

abc 17 (1)
ABC Wednesday – Round 17

A picture of two relatives

classroom.mom.malcolm
My sister Marcia posted this picture of my mother. I assume it’s Daniel Dickinson school in Binghamton, NY. Can you find her?

But it was the black youth in the back row that intrigued me. He looked familiar. Specifically, he looked like a Walker, my paternal grandmother’s people.

My dad’s cousin Ruth confirmed that it was indeed Malcolm Walker, son of Melissa Walker Jackson. Melissa was the sister of my grandmother, Agatha Green, but she died when I was very young. He is first cousin to my father (Les Green), Sheldon Walker, Sydney Bullett, Gene Walker and Ruth Lewis.

Oh, my mom is in the third row, on the far left.

So this is a surprising piece of my genealogical puzzle. At some point, Dad’s first cousin went to school with my mom. It’s not shocking, but I never knew this.

BTW, yesterday was my Grandma Green’s birthday. When she died in 1964, she was the first significant person to die in my life.