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where we eat enchiladas.

Somethings are Worth Losing Sleep Over, Others are Just a Waste of Time

There are types of everything. You know what I mean… Types of people. Types of attitudes. Types of beliefs.

 It is because everyone has a separate, personal spin on the mundane that makes the world interesting. There’s no denying that there is a certain “cause and effect” correlation in how everyone forms their views. For, as strange it may seem, people gradually grow into every opinion they have ever had. After birth, we all have learned new lessons very quickly to survive and to fit into society, and in some sense, because of the order of these experiences have been different, combined with the extremities and severity in how they take place, we all have different views about certain things—may it be the best kind of spaghetti sauce, the most comfortable kind of throw cushion, or the easiest subjects to learn in school.

For example, I once read that there is an educational theory where it is thought that children build upon what they already know. Say Timmy has learned to share his ball with the other young students. Later on, Timmy may add upon this lesson to make an opinion. Three months later, Timmy sees another child having his lunch money stolen, so he shares his lunch with him. Years and years down the road, the combined experiences that Timmy has had in relation to this very first experience, that of sharing his ball, will shape Timmy’s experiences about giving money to nonprofit medical foundations. By this time, however, maybe he has a different opinion than the simplified childhood one that he had so long ago. Maybe this time, when he gets a phone call asking for a donation, he politely says no.

For some reason, I’m beginning to think that people’s beliefs are only a small part of who they really are. I mean, beliefs are in some degree the driving force behind the aforementioned types: of people and of attitudes. But there are so many layers of human interaction and conflicting views. It becomes difficult to explain your point of view without offending someone else indirectly.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that people’s opinions matter, but they should be taken with a grain of salt depending on who they are, and what their motives are. If, say, they are a dog catchers union, they collectively have a different view than PETA or dog owners in some aspect of how they handle and treat dogs on a regular basis. Or, if two co-workers have fun bowling in a night league, and they repeatedly show up tired but cheerful to work the next day, should there boss be mad at them? Does he have any right? Maybe the boss has had a negative past experience with bowling that makes him lash out. But what have the co-workers done wrong in the situation? They both are doing their jobs on the same level as they were before, and they are having fun, off the clock, that has nothing to do with their boss, in their free time. Their job performance isn’t affected or anything.

It all depends on the situation, the parties involved, and the beliefs being challenged.

 

Sting is Promoting Illegal Activity

There’s a song out there that I can almost guarantee you’ve heard. It goes:

Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
I’ll be watching you

Which is kind of strange, because it makes it seem like the singer is omniscient. I mean, who has time to watch every breath or movement someone makes?

Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
I’ll be watching you

Oh can’t you see
You belong to me
How my poor heart aches with every step you take

Okay, now here we go. The singer is smitten with this person. (No offense to Sting, but he never explicitly says that he’s watching a woman, so I assume he’s referring to a vague, non-descriptive store mannequin.) He takes time to watch his/her/it’s every second on Earth—plus he says that that person belongs to him. Um ownership of a person? Sting you’re crazy.

Since you’ve gone I’ve been lost without a trace
I dream at night I can only see your face
I look around but it’s you I can’t replace
I feel so cold and I long for your embrace
I keep crying baby, baby please

Then a sudden shift occurs. It’s actually the only shift in the song. I assume the first two stanzas are repeated so much because it signifies all the monotonous days where Sting used his binoculars to stakeout this person’s home/storefront. He seems particularly distressed when this Third Act comes along. I assume this person discovered his mobile surveillance unit and ran away or eventually had their arm fall off and was thrown unceremoniously into a dumpster. I guess we’ll never know.

As you can see, “Every Step You Take,” is a song about stalking. If you ever found yourself enjoying this song, you are a sick freak and should be put in jail. I may even do it myself.

Harry Potter 7

The last Harry Potter book will be released tomorrow, so I thought I’d throw my hat into the ring and guess what will happen. I have no insider knowledge about the book except from what the author has officially said.

Readers of the first six books know that the same recurring themes will appear within the novel no matter what:

1.) A Huey Lewis song will play softly in the background (The Power of Love) and will be a major aspect of this novel. The only dead character mentioned or seen in every book thus far, who we know little-to-nothing about, is Lily Potter. Rowling has intentionally left clues about her along the way—how she was an excellent student, very courageous, very beautiful, with perfect green eyes, and sacrificed her life for her child. There will be a surprise or another grain of information that the reader will be amazed at in the next book, and it’s most likely about Lily Potter. This information will most likely come via her sister, Petunia.

2.) “Doing what is right over what is easy” is another prevalent theme. For example, Pettigrew’s life debt will be major to the plot—or essential to the last seconds of the epic battle depicted on the DH bookcover. Also, R.A.B. will become a factor. R.A.B. has been hypothesized as Regalus Black by most Potterheads. He made the opposite decision of Pettigrew, and his death (and the mysterious unopenable locket in the Black home) will eventually help Harry more than he knows. But who has the locket? Kreacher or Mundungus?

3.) Voldemort, Draco, Hagrid, Snape, and every other character exhibit what Dumbledore stressed in the previous books. It doesn’t matter who you are born as, but who you become. It’s your actions that define you. Just because you come from a racist background doesn’t mean that you yourself have to be racist. Snape is, of course, on the side of the Order. Draco’s wavering wand at the end of the last book depicts a young man who was at a crossroads from his childhood behavior, but now it might be too late to detour from his current path (or is it…).

4.) The battle for eternal life and invincibility is another motif in all these books. Harry, however, needs the Horcruxes to stave off Voldemorte for good. There is little doubt that Voldemorte will not survive this book and that Harry is successful. All the readership wants to know is if Harry will survive the ordeal. My official answer: The prophecy clearly states that one will be alive, the other dead. Harry will live.

Random knowledge of the last book:

1.) The Weasley’s Ford Angela will make an appearance.

2.) Viktor Krum will make an appearance.

3.) Bill and Fleur will get married in the summer.

4.) There will be two major characters killed off.

5.) The prophecy will be completed.

6.) There will be no Quidditch.

7.) Rita Skeeter will make an appearance.

8.) Kreacher will have a major role. (Rowling wouldn’t cut him out of the fifth movie, making me think he has knowledge of the Horcruxes—maybe even the locket).

Infered to be in the book:

1.) Ron and Hermione will start a relationship.

2.) Voldemorte will die.

3.) Harry, Ron, and Hermione will ride a dragon (as seen on the cover of the Deluxe edition bookcover).

4.) Harry, Ron, and Hermione will see vast riches (much like in The Goonies; as seen on the cover of the British Children’s edition bookcover).

My guesses about who will die:

I think every one of the Weasley’s have exhibited the qualities loved by Godric Gryffindor—everyone but Percy, that is. Either he has shown bravery by sticking to his beliefs, even against his close-knit family, or he has yet to exhibit them. His death would make a dramatic impact and change his family’s view of him, since they think he’s a git.

I think the Big Three, Harry, Ron, and Hermione, are untouchable. I thought that about the character who died in Book 6, too, but I have a good feeling about these three surviving. Since Snape is supposed to be a wildcard in the struggle, even though he’s not, I think his death will be major. Such a sacrifice would be logical.

I also think as Voldemorte’s informal second-in-command, Bellatrix Lestrange will probably kick the bucket. I don’t think she’s had enough face time to be a true major character though.

Things I really want to know, but probably won’t be addressed:

Dumbledore defeated Grindewald in the 1940’s, which coincided with the end of World War II. Depending on how He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named is killed, seeing that he caused unparalleled terror and unrest, is his defeat Rowling’s liberal idea on how modern terrorism should be eradicated?

Conclusion:

There will be many surprises in Book 7, though in an interview J.K. Rowling said that most readers will be disappointed with the book overall. She still thinks it’s amazing. The best case scenario is that I will read the last word of the book (which is no longer “scar”) and I will long for more of the Wizarding World. I want to feel satisfied that every plot line is logically answered, and when I close the backcover, I don’t want to be angry. That’s all I ask. She’s spent seventeen years planning and writing this series, I just hope she didn’t screw up a plausible ending. I trust that she will do it the right way, however that way may be.

Let’s see how correct I am with my guesses…

The Plant Wizard

I remembered this poem from The 42nd Parallel by John Dos Passos, but it’s not online any where. It’s a shame that it’s not online already. Please don’t sue me!

The Plant Wizard

Luther Burbank was born in a brick farmhouse in Lancaster Mass,
he walked through the woods one winter
crunching through the shinycrusted snow
stumbling into a little dell where a warm spring was
and found the grass green and weeds sprouting
and skunk cabbage pushing up a potent thumb,
He went home and sat by the stove and read Darwin
Struggle for Existence Origin of Species Natural
Selection that wasn’t what they taught in church,
so Luther Burbank ceased to believe moved to Lunenburg,
found a seedball in a potato plant
sowed the seed and cashed in on Darwin’s Natural Selection
on Spencer and Huxley
with the Burbank potato.

Young man go west;
Luther Burbank went to Santa Rosa
full of his dream of green grass in winter ever-
blooming flowers ever-
bearing berries; Luther Burbank
could cash in on Natural Selection Luther Burbank
carried his apocalyptic dream of green grass in winter
and seedless berries and stoneless plums and thornless roses brambles cactus—
winters were bleak in that bleak
brick farmhouse in bleak Massachusetts—
out to sunny Santa Rosa;
and he was a sunny old man
where roses bloomed all year
everblooming everbearing
hybrids.

America was hybrid
America could cash in on Natural Selection.
He was an infidel he believed in Darwin and Natural
Selection and the influence of the mighty dead
and a good firm shipper’s fruit
suitable for canning.
He was one of the grand old men until the churches
and the congregations
got wind that he was an infidel and believed
in Darwin.
Luther Burbank had never a thought of evil,
selected improved hybrids for America
those sunny years in Santa Rosa.
But he brushed down a wasp’s nest that time;
he wouldn’t give up Darwin and Natural Selection
and they stung him and he died
puzzled.
They buried him under a cedartree.
His favorite photograph
was of a little tot
standing beside a bed of hybrid
everblooming double Shasta daisies
with never a thought of evil
And Mount Shasta
in the background, used to be a volcano
but they don’t have volcanos
any more.

Coming Soon

A Rant about the creepiest song lyrics of all time: Sting’s I’ll Be Watching You

Boston Sports Saviors?

Jacoby Ellsbury

The Red Sox have been perennial playoff contenders this decade—but they have mostly achieved this through buying and trading major league talent. Just like in the late ’80’s and most of the ’90’s, the Red Sox have traded most of their minor league talent for big league help. In the last few years we’ve traded Clay Meredyth, Hanley Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Matt Murton (probably only Ramirez doesn’t have a ceiling for his potential) for other talents, mostly rent-a-players. I think Murton was in the Nomar trade that got the Sox Orlando Cabrera. Ramirez and Sanchez landed us Beckett, etc. It may seem like the Sox only kept “sure thing” prospects over the years, like Clemens, Boggs, Vaughn, Nomar, Youklis, and Papelbon. But think about all other talent lost in dumb trades. Brady Anderson, Jeff Bagwell, David Eckstein, etc. I just wish Boston won’t squander this homegrown crop: Lester, maybe, or Craig Hansen, or Jacoby Ellsbury. Mortgaging their future so they can win today, much like the Celtics are doing now.

Ray Allen

The Celtics basically traded for a 32 year-old All Star coming off surgery on both his ankles. I’m not saying Ray Allen isn’t good, or that we didn’t get good value with the 35th pick. I’m saying that we spent too much for a 30+ player and a second round pick. Wally can shoot, not as well as Allen, per se, but he makes considerably less money. Then there’s Delonte, who led the second team—not to mention being a solid one-on-one defender, and bringing unity in the locker room. Basically, Ainge traded a high prospect, in Jeff Green, a budding player in West (who shouldn’t be a sub), and Wally (probaby a throw-in to make the salaries work, the Celts didn’t want to give up there co-captain Ratliff even though he’s coming off an injury. Wally’s coming off an injury too!) Theo Ratliff needs to prove that he can play a full season. Then another team will have the added benifit of a big man and an expiring contract, then the Celts will get maximum value. Plus, no other star is coming to Boston through a trade this summer, most likely. It’ll have to be during the season.

And if another deal gets done, trade Ratliff and Green. They are expendable. Jefferson isn’t. The Celtics added all this young talent. They should take a lesson from the old Red Sox teams that lost to the Yankees for so long.

Highbrow, Lowbrow, Brown Cow

Jim Gaffigan

I don’t know about you, but I’ve categorized at least three types of comedians:

1.) There are the lofty, philosophical comedians that tell jokes that only Albert Einstein would appreciate fully (if he weren’t dead and his brain wasn’t cut into samples and spread around the world, and all). George Carlin does this all the time, and he acknowledges that he’s the “thinking man’s” comic because he wants to prove he has a brain even though he never really had a formal education (because he dropped out of high school).

2.) The comedians that tell fart jokes and steal bad ones (a la Carlos Mencia, the putz) fall into category two. This style also jumps into the comedians who do mainstream work (like the atrocious Larry the Cable Guy—honestly, “Git ‘er done” isn’t a universal phrase for every situation—ranging into accomplished comedians who jump into sitcoms and movies (like Ray Romano and Mike Myers).

3.) Then, and this is probably the most widespread style, there are the comedians that jump back and forth between jokes at random, saying things like “that reminds me of the time…” or “what’s the deal with…?” or just jumping into another joke without even the slightest segue. It seems to be a sort of ranting that works for stand-up, and I hear it with comedians like Jerry Seinfeld, Jim Gaffigan and Dane Cook. And everyone loves a good joke about Hot Pockets or Kool-Aid, don’t they?

I’ve lumped comedians together and simplified their styles. People may have other views about this—since, c’mon, you monitor the media and love to laugh as much as I do—but isn’t this verifiable fact? Purely physical comedians who do slapstick might deserve a fourth category, you might say. But, that’s really lowbrow comedy that’s technically the same as the comedians in the second category. So go suck on a lemon.

Thank you, thank you. You’ve been great. No really, stop, you’re embarrassing me.

::Exit Stage Left::