3-D Boobs!

In case you haven’t heard, two commercials will air in 3-D during the Super Bowl – a 90 second trailer for DreamWorks’ Monsters vs. Aliens movie and 30 second spot for Pepsi’s SoBe Lifewater. Additionally, Monday’s episode of Chuck will air in 3-D on NBC.

As you might guess, you’ll need a special pair of glasses to catch all the 3-D glory; the free glasses should be available at SoBe displays at Safeway, Vons, K-Mart, Ralphs, Kroger, A&P, Frys, Supervalu, Food Lion, Pathmark, Coburn, Fairway, Fresh Brands, Hy Vee, Nash Finch, Dollar General and Winn Dixie (Target and Meijer are scheduled to put them out on Saturday). And oh yeah – the lenses are purple and amber in color, so if you happen to have a pair of the old red and blue glasses lying around, you’re outta luck.

So anyway, I got several pairs of the glasses today, as did Robert Seidman of tvbythenumbers.com. Robert wondered if there were any demos or anything online that would let him preview the 3-D effect. He went to the website of the company behind the new technology and managed to find this gallery of demo photos. There are around 35 pictures in the demo gallery, and Robert’s favorite was of some fighter jets. Mine was, of course, this picture (yes you’ll need the glasses to see this in 3-D):

(click to enlarge)
(click to enlarge)

Yes, friends… boobs in 3-D! What a time to be alive!

Actually, you know that was probably the first picture they took in 3-D, right?

Coach of the Year!

Who’s the Motorola NFL Coach of the Year for 2008?

Yeah, you know who it is:

Mike Tomlin
Who’s awesome?

Congrats, Coach Tomlin! Just lead us to victory on Sunday, OK?

Read more here (IRONY ALERT: link is to a Seattle Post-Intelligencer article)

More Random News

– The North Carolina legislature, never one to shy away from taxing anything that moves, is considering taxing digital downloads like music and movies. This is hardly surprising, as North Carolina has the highest tax rate in the South. Unfortunately, the $12 million that such a tax would allegedly take in is only a squirt of water in the $20 billion bucket that is the state’s current budget deficit.

– Speaking of deficits, the United States Post Service has such an operating deficit that it’s considering dropping a day of mail delivery as a cost-cutting measure. What may surprise you about this is the actual day the USPS is considering: Tuesday! Yeah, I thought it would be Saturday, too.

– Travel site TripAdvisor has come up with a list of the worst hotels in America, based on the ratings users leave on the site. The “winner” is Hotel Carter, a budget hotel located near New York’s Times Square. You should check out the reviews of the place: not only does almost everyone rant about how awful the place is, many have also uploaded pictures of the bed bug bites they recieved whilst staying there.

– In sports news, although the Charlotte Bobcats (the team) are showing signs of life, the Charlotte Bobcats (the business entity) are still struggling.  Amusingly, while the Bobs have beaten several good teams lately (causing local media and bloggers to start talking about how the Bobcats are “for real” this year), the team is actually only 1 game ahead of last year: 18-26 this year vs. 17-27 last year. But then again, what do you expect from a team with an absentee owner that doesn’t even know his way around town?

– It seems like there have been a million articles published about the Super Bowl this week, but so far I’ve only found that this one could hold my interest. It’s all about how the Steelers and Cards are a lot alike in business terms. It’s a good read – you should check it out!

– Lastly, Davidson phenom Stephen Curry hit a 75 footer in last night’s game. Check out the video here.

Break My Heart

Dear Royce Zeigler II and Kimberly Trenor,

You will die the most painful death imaginable and then burn in hell for all eternity.

Love ya,

God

Baby Grace

Read the sad story here.

In Response to Scott G.

My pal Scott recently posted a note on Facebook where he talked about “five odd things” he does when no one else is around. He tagged several people in the note, and if you were tagged, you were supposed to make your own list of five odd things that you do when no one is around. I was tagged, but unfortunately I just can’t think of anything truly odd that I do when no one is around, save for the usual stuff like singing at the top of my lungs when I’m home alone listening to the iPod. Instead, I decided to do a list of “Five Odd Things About Me In General”. Some might make you laugh; some might make you cringe. And so… without further ado… the list!

1) “Get this voice outta my head!” – As you can tell from this blog, I like to write. What you might not know is that I’m writing all the time. Seriously: all… the… time. If I’m not actually engaged in something – like talking to the missus or watching something on TV –  I’m writing an article in my head, over and over again. In fact, by the time you read something I’ve posted on this blog, I’ve probably written it in my head dozens of times. So if I’m outside smoking a cigarette, or doing a mundane household task like making the bed or washing dishes, I have this voice in my head, and it’s writing articles… 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! What’s really sad about all this is that “the voice” is apparently only able to write short, non-fiction pieces; despite writing enough articles on this site over the years to fill the Encyclopedia Britannica, I just can’t do long form non-fiction, or fiction in any format. In fact, over the past 20 years, I’ve only had a couple of ideas for stories, and they were half-baked crap that wouldn’t fill one of those little books in the checkout line at the grocery store, much less 300 pages of a “real” novel.

2) “There’s asphalt in Room 101” – When you were a kid, did you ever walk barefoot across asphalt and accidentally “roll” your toes underneath your foot and scrape the tops of them? I did that a few times, and it’s led to one of my only phobias: scraping the tops of my toes on asphalt. It sounds silly, I know. And, as an adult, there are few instances where I actually go outside without shoes. But it happens sometimes. Maybe I need to go out and get the mail, and my shoes are “all the way” upstairs. Maybe I just got out of the shower and Lisa has just come home with a bunch of stuff from Harris Teeter that needs to be unloaded from the car. Whatever the case may be, I’ll walk slowly and carefully across the pavement, and the entire time I’ll think about the sensation of the skin on the tops of my toes being ripped away by the asphalt. And it’ll freak me out. I’ll get a queasy feeling in my stomach, and my brain moves at 1000 miles an hour, thinking alternately about how it would feel and then ordering my muscles not to do it. I don’t think I’d call it a paranoia – I’m not nearly as bad about this as Lisa is about spiders – but still… if I walk across asphalt barefoot, scraping my toes will be the only thing I think about.

Continue reading “In Response to Scott G.”

Stay away from Belkin?

If you’ve owned a computer for any length of time, you’ve probably heard of Belkin, a company that makes peripherials and accessories like USB hubs, KVMs, cables, and wireless networking devices. Due to the company’s ruthless marketing, Belkin accessories are sometimes be the only brand available at many big-box stores like Best Buy and Circuit City. Like Monster Cable, Belkin products always felt like robust and quality products (which is no doubt why the company was able to get in the door of corporate giants like Best Buy). But us geeks never really warmed to them. It always seemed as if something was wrong with their products, as if they didn’t quite work as advertised.

Well, we now know why. Sort of. Last week, news hit the Internet that the company was paying people to post good reviews of their products at sites like Amazon.com and Newegg.com. That in itself is bad, but it’s hardly the crime of the century. That is, until people alleging to be current and former Belkin employees opened the floodgates with tales about the company’s sordid business practices.

The allegations include:

– Not just paying for positive Belkin reviews, but also paying for negative reviews of competitor’s products.

– Sending hardware with custom firmware (operating systems) to reviewers, in order to hide bugs in their production hardware.

– Putting Microsoft and Apple hardware certification logos on products that had not earned them.

– Releasing “blatantly inaccurate” test results to make their products look better against the competition.

– Giving bonuses to business units with the most positive reviews per quarter, regardless of the rate of return of the product (the theory here being that even if a product sucks, the number of consumers that actually return a $25 product would be vanishingly small).

– Rigging demos hardware at trade shows. While I’m sure Belkin isn’t the only company to do this, the example given – running cables underneath (or behind) furniture so that a “wireless” media server is actually “wired” – is pretty damn awful.

You can read the whole sad tale here. In the meantime, I suggest you stay away from Belkin products until all this shakes out!

SONGS I LOVE: “Just Like Heaven”

The Watson TwinsDid you, by any chance, happen to catch this week’s episode of Fringe on Fox? Because if you did, you would have heard The Watson Twins’ cover of The Cure’s “Just Like Heaven”.

The Watson Twins – comprised of identical twins Chandra and Leigh Watson, along with Aram Arslanian, Russ Pollard, Jason Soda, and Jenny Lewis – are a band based out of Los Angeles, California.

Born and reared in Louisville, Kentucky, Chandra and Leigh attended the University of Evansville before moving to Silverlake, California in 1997. There, they formed a band called Slydell. A few years later, they formed The Watson Twins.

What can I say about this song… other than it’s awesome? Imagine a slightly more folksy version of Mazzy Star covering The Cure and you’ve got this song down pat. I was watching Fringe on my computer, then saw the scene with this song in the background. I immediately paused the video player and looked online for this song… and after I’d downloaded it, I listened to it over and over and over again. It’s just so… hypnotic!

Tell me what you think:

[audio:watson_twins.mp3]

Check out their MySpace page here and their Wikipedia page here.

A Modest Proposal

Perhaps the biggest sin in American sports fandom is bandwagoning – the act of becoming a fan of a team when they’re playing well, but then ceasing to be a fan once they’ve cooled off.

We all know bandwagoners… like your hypothetical friends “Dave and Cindy”. Dave and Cindy don’t especially care about the NFL. They’ve never owned a piece of NFL apparel in their lives, nor had they ever even considered buying any. They express no desire to watch regular-season games with you, and might even be hostile to the idea of watching a game in the first place. But then your local sports team makes it to the playoffs and suddenly Dave and Cindy want to come over to your house to watch the game. They’re wearing matching team sweatshirts, have officially licensed pom poms in team colors and even have a pair of team flags on their car. Dave sits on the sofa and tries to converse with you using things he’s cribbed from the sports section of your local paper. Cindy sits with your missus and cheers at the appropriate times. Unfortunately, as soon as the playoffs are over, Dave and Cindy completely forget all about your team… until the next time they go to the playoffs, in which case Dave and Cindy will be back wearing their sweatshirts and waving their pom poms.

Over the years, several unwritten rules have been developed in the “Man Code” to prevent bandwagoning. The biggest rules are thus:

If you are born in a city with an professional sports franchise, you must be a fan of that team if you’re going to be a fan at all. If you move to a city that has a team in the same sport, you are allowed a five-year “grace period”, in which you may root for your original home team, before you are required to become a fan of your “new” team. If you move to a city without a team in that sport, you are allowed to continue cheering for your original home team; if a team is created after you move, you are allowed to keep cheering for your original home team. If your home team moves, you are absolved of any allegiance to them, and can root for any other team you choose.

It’s silly, isn’t it? The problem with bandwagoning is, as I see it, not with the first part of the definition (“becoming a fan of a team when they’re playing well”), but the second (“ceasing to be a fan once they’ve cooled off”). After all, every sport needs new fans, and if a team on the other side of the country makes you an NFL fan, well… fine by me.

Continue reading “A Modest Proposal”

Girls and Football

I just had to post this! Nextround.net has this awesome list of things “your girlfriend” said during the NFC\AFC Championships.

Here are a few of my favorites:

“I thought the Cardinals were in St. Louis. Is St. Louis in Arizona?”

“I thought you said Matt Leinart was on one of these teams.”

“You really don’t see that many black guys named Larry.”

“Which guy did you say would draw me a picture of Jesus?”

“THAT’s who Kendra is going to marry? He can’t even catch.”

“What did you mean when you said you thought it would be a Pennsylvania Super Bowl? None of these teams are called Pennsylvania.”