Quote of the Day

“Jesus was the only One that ever raised the dead,” The Misfit continued, “and He shouldn’t have done it. He shown everything off balance. If He did what He said, then it’s nothing for you to do but thow away everything and follow Him, and if He didn’t, then it’s nothing for you to do but enjoy the few minutes you got left the best way you can by killing somebody or burning down his house or doing some other meanness to him. No pleasure but meanness,” he said and his voice had become almost a snarl.

“Maybe He didn’t raise the dead,” the old lady mumbled, not knowing what she was saying and feeling so dizzy that she sank down in the ditch with her legs twisted under her.

“I wasn’t there so I can’t say He didn’t,” The Misfit said. “I wisht I had of been there,” he said, hitting the ground with his fist. “It ain’t right I wasn’t there because if I had of been there I would of known. Listen lady,” he said in a high voice, “if I had of been there I would of known and I wouldn’t be like I am now.” His voice seemed about to crack and the grandmother’s head cleared for an instant. She saw the man’s face twisted close to her own as if he were going to cry and she murmured, “Why you’re one of my babies. You’re one of my own children!” She reached out and touched him on the shoulder. The Misfit sprang back as if a snake had bitten him and shot her three times through the chest. Then he put his gun down on the ground and took off his glasses and began to clean them.

Hiram and Bobby Lee returned from the woods and stood over the ditch, looking down at the grandmother who half sat and half lay in a puddle of blood with her legs crossed under her like a child’s and her face smiling up at the cloudless sky.

Without his glasses, The Misfit’s eyes were red-rimmed and pale and defenseless-looking. “Take her off and thow her where you thown the others,” he said, picking up the cat that was rubbing itself against his leg.

“She was a talker, wasn’t she?” Bobby Lee said, sliding down the ditch with a yodel.

“She would of been a good woman,” The Misfit said, “if it had been somebody there to shoot her every minute of her life.”

– Flannery O’Connor
“A Good Man is Hard to Find”

Good News, Bad News

Some good news and some bad news for Mad Men fans.

AMC has officially greenlit season 5 of the Emmy-winning series. Talks between show runner and creator Matthew Weiner and AMC\Lionsgate had nearly broken down, not over his 2 year, $30m deal, but because AMC demanded more product placement, cutting episodes by two minutes, and axing two regular cast members.

I don’t have a problem with product placement per se; the show’s been doing that for years, and as long as it’s appropriate to the era it can be easily worked into the script.

In the past, AMC has accommodated Weiner by letting the show run long (say, an hour and five minutes instead of an hour) instead of cutting content to run more ads. I don’t see why AMC just can’t keep this up.

Weiner is adamant about not cutting cast members, so this might be a genuine sticking point. Betty (January Jones) is remarried, so as much as I enjoy looking at January every week, there’s little reason for her to be there. I’m not sure how much money Robert Morse (Bert Cooper) makes, so having him die of a heart attack might be a possibility, if necessary. Who else would you cut if you had to make the choice?


So the good news is that far from negotiations “collapsing”, the series is absolutely on. The bad news? Season 5 won’t air until 2012. As crappy as that is, I can wait for quality programming, ya know?

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-27

  • R.I.P. Drew Hill 🙁 #
  • OK… R.I.P. Drew Hill *and* Elizabeth Taylor #
  • Don't forget: Duran Duran LIVE (directed by David Lynch!) on YouTube at 22:00 (that's 14 minutes!) #
  • is apparently the only person immune to pollen! #
  • loves Firefox 4 so much he wants to take it behind the middle school and get it pregnant! #
  • The Jamaican beef patties from Island Grocery on Albermarle are CRAZY DELICIOUS! #
  • "Welcome to The Diamond. We're out of everything but ketchup and tartar sauce." #

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Random TV News

Here’s a few TV-related items for today:

– If you read my Ashes to Ashes recaps, you might remember this screencap from season 1 episode 4:

In the recap, I commented on the poster behind Gene Hunt’s head, and how funny it was to see it again after all these years. Well guess what? A woman named Fiona Walker has come forward and taken credit (or blame, depending on your gender politics ) for being the girl who bared her bottom. Although it’s not quite “What happened to Amelia Earhart” or “Who was Jack the Ripper”, it’s still nice to have one of life’s little mysteries solved.

Justified is a show about a US Marshall who is transferred to his native Kentucky after shooting a drug dealer in Miami. It’s based on a short story by Elmore Leonard, and it’s pretty damn good. Stephen Root (Jimmy James from News Radio and Milton from Office Space) occasionally plays a judge on the show… and it’s nice to see he hasn’t forgotten his red Swingline stapler:


– Lastly, here’s Mad Men’s John Slattery in the new music video from The National, where he plays a Secret Service agent in love with the (female) president:

Pause to Remember

Today marks the 455th anniversary of the death of Thomas Cranmer, the 69th Archbishop of Canterbury and the author of The Book of Common Prayer. From Wikipedia:

Cranmer was tried for treason and heresy after Mary I, a member of the Catholic Church, came to the throne. Imprisoned for over two years and under pressure from the Church authorities, he made several recantations and apparently reconciled himself with the Roman Catholic faith. However, on the day of his execution, he dramatically withdrew his recantations, to die a heretic to Catholics and a martyr to Protestants. His legacy lives on within the Church of England through the Book of Common Prayer and the Thirty-Nine Articles, an Anglican statement of faith derived from his work.

Cranmer was burned at the stake, and history says that he shoved his right hand – the hand that had signed all those recantations – into the fire first as a penance for his sins.

Cranmer’s beautiful words made the Book of Common Prayer second only to the Authorized Bible as important works of the English language. Everyone is familiar with the words “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust” and “What God hath joined here today let no man put asunder”. But Anglicans will hold this especially close to the heart:

“Almighty God, our heavenly Father, who of thy tender mercy didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ to suffer death upon the Cross for our redemption; who made there (by his one oblation of himself once offered) a full, perfect, and sufficient sacrifice, oblation, and satisfaction, for the sins of the whole world; and did institute, and in his holy Gospel command us to continue, a perpetual memory of that his precious death, until his coming again: Hear us, O merciful Father, we most humbly beseech thee; and grant that we receiving these thy creatures of bread and wine, according to thy Son our Saviour Jesus Christ’s holy institution, in remembrance of his death and passion, may be partakers of his most blessed Body and Blood …”

Thanks to The Ugley Vicar for the heads-up.

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2011-03-20

  • Owsley Stanley R.I.P. #
  • Georgia executed Emmanuel Hammond back in January? THIS January? WTF – I was a junior in HS when he killed Julie Love! #
  • We have liftoff! St. Patrick's Day 2011 is underway! #
  • OMG! We really DID pass a body search on Statesville Road earlier! #
  • Where's Calvin? #
  • Fried pickles and a cheeseburger? Thank you, may I have another? #
  • Has the best girlfriend EVER! #
  • You grew up never telling your caring parents where you were going, and now you tell an indifferent audience where you are with 4square. #
  • has "Telegram Sam" in his head for some reason. And now you do, too! #

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Detective and Genius

A sinecure is a cushy, do-nothing job, often given as a reward to political supporters, or to public figures as a “retirement job”. Before there were speaking tours and book deals, most American presidents took sinecures as heads of universities or charities after leaving office, for example.

It’s probably no surprise that England was (and still is) the undisputed heavyweight champion of sinecures. Centuries of rival factions vying for the Crown led to the creation of hundreds of patronage jobs for supporters. Although most of these sinecures have been eliminated, a few – such as the Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports and the Constable of the Tower of London – still exist.

Few sinecures were as sought after as the post of Warden of the Royal Mint. The job only required a few public appearances a year, and the actual day-to-day job could be sublet to almost anyone. Most importantly, the job paid well: around £415 a year in the late 1600s. This was a lot of money at the time. A typical “gentleman” only made around £280/year, a high-ranking bishop would make £72/year, and a military officer could take home around £60/year. Considering that a common seaman made £20/year and a laborer made a mere £15/year, the Warden’s salary was an enormous sum of money for most.

But if the Crown thought they were they were getting a man who would just show up and collect a paycheck when Sir Isaac Newton was appointed to the job, they had another thing coming.

Continue reading “Detective and Genius”

My NEW Birthday Playlist

I was looking through my site stats yesterday, and found that this page is the fourth hit on Google for “birthday playlist”. Why? I dunno. But it’s my birthday party playlist from 2009.

Here’s the playlist from this year’s party:

1. The Cars – Shake It Up (3:30)
2. Blondie – Once I Had a Love (3:14)
3. The Clash – The Guns Of Brixton (3:12)
4. Buzzcocks – What Do I Get? (2:57)
5. Roxy Music – Out Of The Blue (4:46)
6. Lindstrøm & Christabelle – Lovesick (3:12)
7. Return To Mono – Framebreaker (5:06)
8. Duran Duran – Being Followed (3:48)
9. The Fixx – Are We Ourselves? (2:27)
10. The Big Pink – Crystal Visions (5:48)

Continue reading “My NEW Birthday Playlist”