Month: February 2010

Yes, I’d Like the Rectal Rocket Fuel, Please

Yes, I’d Like the Rectal Rocket Fuel, Please

Funny Stuff
The world of hot sauce aficionados is a weird one, indeed.  While I can't handle anything hotter than regular Tabasco Sauce, I would love to be one of those hot sauce people.  Why?  Because of the names. Walk into any store or display case full of hot sauce and you'll see some of the wackiest names for their wares.  They usually describe, in vivid detail, what will happen to you should you consume what's inside the bottle - a certain truth in advertising that's far too uncommon these days.  Case in point: here's the sauce menu from a Mexican restaurant called Amigos, located in Australia of all places. If I didn't know any better I'd say this was a flyer from an S&M club of some kind.  Not that I would know what one of those looks like. You know a place means business
This Week in History! (February 22-28)

This Week in History! (February 22-28)

History
*February 23, 1927: The Federal Radio Commission (precursor to today's FCC) is created with the passage of the Radio Act of 1927.   President Calvin Coolidge urges the Commission to execute their duties with "all urgent haste", as Howard Stern's first show is only 50 years away. *February 25, 1964: A 22-year-old Olympic champion upstart by the name of Cassius Clay defeats heavyweight boxing champion Sonny Liston by TKO.  Clay changed his name to Muhammad Ali a week later, but I don't care.  His momma name him Clay, I'm gonna call him Clay. *February 24, 1988: With their 8-0 verdict in Hustler Magazine, Inc. v. Falwell, the United States Supreme Court rules that public figures cannot sue for being made the subject of satire.  The decision clears the final obstacle in the path of Larry
Listening Booth – The Cars, “Candy-O”

Listening Booth – The Cars, “Candy-O”

Listening Booth, Music
Just because I'm in the mood for some vintage New Wave, here's one of my favorite songs by the Cars.  It's the title track from their 1979 sophomore effort, Candy-O.  While never released as a single, "Candy-O" nonetheless brilliantly showcases the darker and more sinister side of the group.  The main guitar riff is ferocious and I'm always down with Ben Orr's vocals, but Elliot Easton's lead work is the star here.
Album review: Field Music – Field Music (Measure)

Album review: Field Music – Field Music (Measure)

Music
For fans of Sunderland's indie pop masters Field Music, the two-plus years since their announced hiatus felt like anything but.  Scarcely a year after the January 2007 release of Tones of Town, co-founder David Brewis released an album under the School of Language banner.   That was followed up in August '08 by the self-titled debut of brother Peter's project, The Week That Was.  To confuse matters even further both albums were only nominally solo efforts, as each brother contributed to the other one's disc. So while I greeted the news of Field Music's official resurrection as a musical concern with enthusiasm, it was hardly a shock.  I'll just chalk the whole hiatus thing up to artists needing to be artists, and leave it at that. All of which brings us to the first proper Field Musi
Calling all writers!

Calling all writers!

Blogstuff
Have you ever dreamed of writing for a world-famous, highly successful website?  Well I have too.  But until then I write for this site, and so can you!  That's right, the Man in the Gray Flannel Suit is putting out an open casting call for contributing writers.  Interested?  Of course you are.  Here's some of the pertinent details: *There's no money involved, so don't bother quitting your day job. *There's no quota for content - if you want to contribute once a month that's cool.  If you'd like to write once a week, even better. *I'd first like to see some evidence that you can at least string a few intelligent thoughts together in a coherent manner (i.e. if you have a site I'll look at that, or look at some other things you've written). *You can write about almost any topic, so
Andrea Friedman FTW

Andrea Friedman FTW

People, TV & Radio
Andrea Friedman is an actress.  Notably, but not more importantly, Andrea Friedman also has Down Syndrome.  Nevertheless, she's still managed to carve out a decent acting career for herself, with her most recent appearance being in an episode of Family Guy.  Long story short, in the recent Valentine's Day episode Friedman's character (who also has Down Syndrome) joked about being Palin's daughter.  So naturally, the self-appointed defender of the downtrodden opened her piehole to garner some sympathy. Well Friedman was having none of that.  Here's her response to Palin: My name is Andrea Fay Friedman. I was born with Down syndrome. I played the role of Ellen on the "Extra Large Medium" episode of Family Guy that was broadcast on Valentine's day. Although they gave me red hair on the sh
John Shuster, internet darling of the day

John Shuster, internet darling of the day

Sports
Even if you're not a huge fan of curling, you're probably familiar by now with John Shuster's underwhelming performance as captain of the U.S. team at this year's Winter Olympics.  Through four matches, Shuster and the boys have zero wins.  But what makes this year's futility especially painful is Shuster's propensity for coming up short at crucial moments.  Three matches have been lost because he couldn't make his final stone count. Well the mob has spoken and they're not happy.  In addition to the deluge of anti-Shuster Tweets, the captain's Wikipedia entry has undergone some creative editing.  Luckily it's all saved in the article history.  Here are a few choice ones just from today (in addition to the edits that show him as deceased): A personal tidbit - "Shuster failed four tim
I’d Like to Thank All the Little People

I’d Like to Thank All the Little People

Advertising
It's been a few years since I heard from a Who's Who scammer, but it turns out today is my lucky day!  None other than Mr. J.M. Blakely (VP, Research Division) has extended the once-in-a-day opportunity to be part of Strathmore's Who's Who Registry & Global Network for Outstanding Professionals! Did you see that?  I'm an outstanding professional.  I need to add that to my business cards.  I mean if random pictures of a building, a pen, and some business guy cursing God aren't enough to convince you of Strathmore's legitimacy, I don't know what will. Here's their little sales pitch, in case you're interested: Dear Gray Flannel Suit, It is my pleasure to inform you that on January 24th, 2010 your information was reviewed and accepted for inclusion in the 2010 edition of our
Book report: The Worst Hard Time

Book report: The Worst Hard Time

Books
You ever talk to one of those annoying people who always feels compelled to one-up your tales of woe?  You try to get a little sympathy for spraining your ankle, and all they can do is go on about the time they broke their leg twenty years ago.  Then there's the other variation, where you try to talk about a difficult situation with an older relative and they bust out the "back in my day..." line to trump you.  It's like, enough already old timer. Well here's the thing about the folks who lived through the Dust Bowl of the 1930s - their stories really are worse than your stories.  Every time.  And they don't have to embellish or exaggerate.  The trick is to make those stories readable and engaging, which isn't as easy as it may seem.  Fortunately we have Timothy Egan's 2005 work, The Wo