Friday, February 15, 2008

I Spy a Giant Hunk of Space Junk

Is anyone else excited that the U.S. Government plans to shoot a giant, poisonous super-secret spy satellite out of the sky some time in the next few weeks? That just sounds cool, right?

If we're going to have an ignorant, misguided, willful, arrogant bastard in the White House, the least he can do is make something cool happen. Re-creating the plot from "Armageddon" only with a spy satellite instead of an asteroid (perhaps even cooler) and without Ben Affleck or Bruce Willis, is, well, it's still awesome.

Apparently, the classified plot was hatched through super-secret meetings with super-secret top scientists. Two Navy destroyers are currently positioned at secret locations in the Pacific, north of the equator, awaiting orders. And there are also super-secret emergency response teams (okay, I don't know if they're actually secret) standing by as we speak, in case the plan doesn't work. FEMA has issued guidelines about responding to the emergency, including, helpfully, that one should avoid giving mouth-to-mouth to anyone who has inhaled hydrazine or beryllium. Fair enough. In my case, the government need not worry, because there is very little chance that I am going to purposely lock lips with a complete stranger, regardless of whether they've been poisoned by rocket fuel.

In any event, stay tuned, because this operation may be a huge success, or a monumental failure, and either way it's going to be fun to watch.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I Like Mixed Nuts and I Cannot Lie

On Friday evening, Darren and I took a trip to Sterling, in hopes of ending my hunt for a really, really cheap bedroom chair. In addition to its no doubt many fine qualities, Sterling is host to a Big Lots, and despite Jared's assessment that these stores are fairly umm...gross, I decided we would take our chances.

While we didn't find a chair, we did find loads of interesting items. Probably the most interesting area was the food section. It included things like canned sardines in a variety of sauces--mustard, hot, vomit. Okay, not that last one, but close enough. There was also strange candy, no-name tomato sauce, and Northern Virginia's most extensive selection of potted meat products.

A long time ago, my roommate and I occasionally shopped at a place called Boston Barn, which featured bargain foods of all types. A sort of "scratch and dent" place, but for things you actually ingest. I stopped shopping there the day we were checking out and a woman approached the cashier to explain that she wanted to return her box of cereal, on account of the things moving inside it. So now, while I do like finding things on sale--10 for $10 Diet Pepsi, for example, feels a little like Christmas morning--I'm not a big fan of discount food. I did find one item, however, from which I could not walk away, and that item was Rap Snacks.

Sure, maybe you've had a Rap Snack before. Maybe for the fly circles in which you run, Rap Snacks are old, and tasty, news. But I suspect 34-year-old Caucasian females from the suburbs are decidedly outside of Rap Snacks' target demographic. Nonetheless, as soon as I saw them, I knew I had to buy them. Rap Snacks, which have apparently been around since 1994, feature superstars of the rap world, and each variety includes an inspiring tag line. The variety available at Big Lots was Stat Quo's "Sour Cream & Extra Cheddar." Stat Quo instructs snackers to "Pursue Your College Degree." (So we'll overlook the myriad grammatical errors on the back, including the one which refers to Stat Quo as a former graduate of U of F.)

I planned to leave the bag unopened, as one should with any fine collectible but while I was out running errands on Saturday Darren succumbed to the siren song of the Rap Snack. He reports that Stat Quo's flavor is a delight. Since 80 cents a bag seems like a small price to pay for a piece of history, we'll probably want to restock.

I am currently on the lookout for other Rap Snacks, including Pastor Troy's "Hot Cheezie Popcorn," which reminds youngsters to: "Stop playin' and get serious!" and YoungBloodZ' "Southern Crunk Barbecue" advising snackers to "Get Crunk!" (I have no idea what that means.) With no disrespect intended, I may skip Chopper Young City's "Pork Skins & Cracklin'" despite its inspiring maxim, "Seize Every Opportunity."

As an homage, Jared and I are currently working on a series of Snack Raps, of which this post's title is merely a sneak peek. Expect big things. Maybe even a spot on our own Rap Snack.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I Know It When I See It

Recently I learned that an Abercrombie & Fitch manager in Virginia Beach was arrested for refusing to remove corporate advertising which some customers felt was obscene.
That got me thinking.

Things that Are Obscene at Abercrombie & Fitch:

The Hearing Damage- Thanks to music played so loud that humans over the age of 18 fall to the ground, writhing and shrieking in pain until they are able to cover their ears and crawl back outside.

The Price- As in paying $69.50 for this-

The Shorts- If you're wearing bottoms, you should not need a Brazilian, however, I suspect in these you might-

The Child Exploitation- Because apparently if you call the children "models" instead of "underpaid sales associates" they don't mind spending five to eight hours a day folding polos for minimum wage.

Things at Abercrombie & Fitch on which the Virginia Beach Police and I Part Ways, Obscenity-Wise:

Sure, it's definitely selling ass, or rather, using ass to sell jeans (which I guess you have to be 21 to find compelling, jeans purchase-wise). But if we banned every piece of advertising that used ass to sell something non-ass-related in this country, there'd be a lot less advertising. Ummm...hold on. I think I might actually be on to something...

Of course, now that I'm starting to come around to their way of thinking, the police go and drop the charges. We'll just have to agree to disagree, I suppose.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


I'll be honest--I don't understand football. I just don't. And it's not that I'm intellectually incapable of comprehending the rules of the game. I see the meatheads who play it (and, let's be fair, the ones who watch it) and I'm pretty sure if they can figure it out, I can. The difference is that I simply can't be bothered. I know some of the terms. I know there are downs and they have to do with yards or something and you only get so many of them before it's the other team's turn. I know what a field goal is, but not when you're allowed to kick one. And I know what a touchdown is. But I'm getting bored just thinking about it.

For the most part, I don't like people whose necks are as wide as their heads. I know it's wrong to pre-judge people based on a physical characteristic--particularly one over which they have no control. It's not as if it's a poorly chosen haircut, or those giant holes some people decide to punch in their ears, and then fill with what appear to be rubber stoppers. But in my experience, the whole neck-to-head ratio thing is generally a good way to separate the wheat from the chaff, if you will.

Additionally, neck-to-head ratio not withstanding, football fans are not typically my people. They're not the kind to laugh at my jokes (which is a sign of something seriously wrong with you, you know, in my opinion), they enjoy things like light beer, or kielbasa, and many are given to excessive displays of exuberance, at volume levels that are only appropriate if you're calling for help from the bottom of a well.

All that having been said, I am from New England, and if a New England team makes it into the final round of any sports competition, I'll pay at least half-assed attention. In this case my reward was watching the Patriots flounder around until Eeyore Manning, oops, I mean Eli Manning, managed to lead, sort of, his team to victory. The lesson in all of this? I was right all along (surprise, surprise): football sucks.