Oh, residents of Beverly Hills. You are a confusing bunch. One the one hand, you’re allOHMYGOD THINK OF THE CHILDREN when the city tries to build a subway under the local high school. But when faced with a family of vicious white tigers, a pride of lions,

wait – make that two families of white tigers, even more lions, a leopard,

a tower of giraffes, a herd of elephants,

and a goddamned gorilla

mere blocks away from an elementary school, with only the flimsiest of iron fences keeping the beasts from rampaging through the streets, do we hear a peep?

Sometimes I question your priorities.

Dead cats and banjos give you their hearts

Some people over at The Awl are discussing what holiday song should be crowned “Most Horrible.” It’s hard to choose; I don’t think you get to win just by being a song that’s overplayed for four weeks out of the year, or for just being a crappy rendition of a holiday classic.

Nobody’s mentioned it yet, but I think I think my choice has to be “Blue Xmas” by Miles Davis w/Bob Dorough. Doesn’t ring a bell? You know, it’s that cheery tune sung by the Schoolhouse Rock guy that goes

And nearly everybody’s standing round holding out their empty hand or tin cup
Gimme gimme gimme gimme, gimme gimme gimme

Geez. Just kill yourself already, Song. Even Miles Davis thought you were bullshit.

Anyway, what started this whole debate about “Most Horrible Holiday Song”? It was the original post’s assertion that Wham(!)’s “Last Christmas” should take the prize. And while I was never a George Michael fan,* I don’t think any song that has been covered 485 times can be called “Most Horrible.” Sure, some renditions are terrible, but then you have the ones that feature:

I don’t think “Blue Xmas” would translate nearly as well.

*That’s not entirely true. I did become a George Michael fan as soon as he got arrested for solicitation in that public restroom. That is a rock star.

Lost her mind

Hey, you know how that phrase “Christ, what an asshole” works as a good substitute caption for every New Yorker cartoon as well as for the last panel of most other comics? I found another place it can work – this story about lost pet flyer vigilante Marilyn White-Sedel. From the Studio City Patch (via laist):

“It’s ugly, it causes garbage, it’s illegal and no one is doing a thing about it except for me,” said White-Sedel, who has lived in Studio City for most of her life.

“The worst part of it is that after their sale, the people don’t even come by and clean up their mess and take the signs down,” she said. …

Over the years, White-Sedel said, she has seen signs become an increasing blight to Studio City. She brought her case again last week to the Studio City Neighborhood Council, and asked for help. …

“I’m the only one taking the signs down; it’s a terrible sight in some neighborhoods—awful,” she said. “I could use some help.”

She brought some of the signs she recently collected from her neighborhood to the SCNC meeting. She said sometimes she brings the signs to the people holding the sale and points out they are illegal. …

“One recent sign I took down was from a cat that was lost for three months,” she concluded. “Those people should realize that the coyotes got that cat a long time ago.”

Maybe I shouldn’t call her an asshole. Thanks to her I now know that Studio City has a lot of pet flyers for me to check out.

Regional hostility

On the human vs. primate front of Indonesia, recent reports have emerged showing humans employing psychological warfare on the macaques in the form of “Humiliation by doll head.”

This is getting so ugly that on this front I’m rooting for the other team. Thankfully, the macaques seem to be winning hearts and minds with their unique battle plan of “Steal the human’s camera and take very charming self-portraits.”

Well done, macaques, and thank you for taking the high road here.

And thank you for the reporting, Joe Borfo!

The tie that binds

I’m interviewing new department assistants at work this week, and for some reason the desperation that people are feeling trying to find a job really hit me this morning. It had something to do with the hundredth or so cover letter that was so bright and sparkling and eager about this ehhh okay entry-level job that it made me wince a little, I guess, and the fact that all the applicants feel like they have to be this eager just to get an interview. Maybe they do have to be this eager to get a job interview at most places these days. These applicants are making me feel like the dance promoter in They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?, even though I feel like I’m being honest that it’s a bit of a dumb and gruelling day for the money being offered.

Then again (oh yes, there is always a then again, isn’t there?), I keep forgetting where I work. I work at a place that has an amazing song catalog, so amazing that it has utterly spoiled me. I have to remember that most people that have my job, or a job as my assistant, at other companies do not get to spend their days looking at this on youtube

legitimately, as a function of work. So, how dumb and gruelling a day can that be? Go ahead, eager young tyros; send me your resumes!*

*Please do not really send me your resumes.
Published in: on November 30, 2010 at 11:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Remember when oil companies were cool and had pegasus logos and gave away Melmac dishes and used ad slogans that inspired blues songs laden with sexual innuendo? Oh wait; oil companies have never been cool. Still…

Those were pretty cool.

Thanks for the tip, Marcel!


Apparently I have to take my computer in for a consultation with a “genius.” Please stand by.

Published in: on April 8, 2010 at 8:29 am  Leave a Comment  
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Leave this sort of thing to the professionals

I kind of hate April Fool’s Day. I like a good prank, but April Fool’s Day is for real pranksters what New Year’s Eve is for drunks – Amateur Night. Forced mirth, cruel and unimaginative schemes, people telling you to lighten up. Ugh. It’s enough to drive a person crazy.

Or replace it all with the Puppy Channel

If I hear one more word about what’s going to be on TV at 11:35 or at 12:05 or at 12:35, I’m going to have to lock myself up in the basement. If it doesn’t include the Matinee Lady or a violent tea party, I couldn’t care less.

The savior of Little Patagonia

Los Altos, you are very lucky that I found Pure Cleaners on State Street the other day. I was so annoyed the other morning walking around your downtown consisting of shops with adorable names like the Cranberry Scoop and the Cobblery and The Cravery, amidst your expensive fleece outerwear-uniformed residents, that I very nearly ordered my army of winged hygiene mice to destroy all memory of your precious suburban being.

But as I said, you are very lucky, because I found Pure Cleaners. If it weren’t for their exceptional Halloween mural, still standing proudly as of January 9th, your little township would be a pile of smugly smoldering ashes by now.

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