Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Tom Waits

Tom Waits has a new album out, which means that he's popping up everywhere to promote it. He's going to be on the Daily Show tonight, was reportedly on NPR, and did this interview, in which he reveals the only two things that you can legally throw out of a moving vehicle in the United States.

My favorite Tom Waits story is one I heard him tell Letterman several years ago: He was driving around doing the Saturday errands with his kids and some of their friends (all around 8 to 10 years old), when they decided they wanted to stop by the record store. He was not in the mood to deal with fans, but caved in anyways. When he walked into the store, no one noticed him. So he stood by the Tom Waits section and still no one seemed to know who he was. Mildly surprised, he left with the kids and they went to the Dump to drop off some trash. As soon as they pulled in, the employees were like “Hey! It’s Tom Waits!”

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Cranapple Acorn Squash

You’ve probably already headed off to your Thanksgiving Day destinations or cooked up your own tasty menus for the big meal, but here’s a recipe for this or future feasts:

Cranberry Apple Pistachio Acorn Squash

  • 2 cups of chopped fresh cranberries
  • 2 cups of chopped apples (cortland or similar)
  • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons of butter
  • 3 acorn squash
  • 1 cup of chopped/minced pistachio nuts
  • salt, pepper, olive oil

  1. preheat oven to 350, pour tall glass of Jamesons on the rocks
  2. cut ends off squash, cut in half, remove seeds
  3. grease up them squash, salt and pep em up
  4. place squash face down in pans, bake for 35 minutes
  5. chop up crannies and apples and mix with brown shug and butter
  6. flip squashies up and stuff with mix, cook 15 minutes
  7. top with chopped/minced pistachios, pour tall glass of Jamesons on the rocks.
  8. enjoy or chill for tomorrow

Monday, November 20, 2006


You've probably seen this or heard about it by now, but if you haven't actually seen it, check it out. It's even worse than it sounds in the news reports. Michael Richards was doing a stand up gig, some black guys started heckling him and he made a lynching reference and then started busting out the n-word. It seems like he just lost it, said something remarkably stupid and then decided his only way out would be to go all the way over the top. And it just spiraled from there. Definitely not safe for work:

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

The Not So Much More-atorium

Enough with the "not so much". I've always disliked the phrase, but I'm growing to detest it on a loathing, hate curdling, rage brewing, bile regurgitating level. Whereas it was once found mostly in the realm of pop culture and entertainment, it is now ubiquitous - a constant refrain in the realms of sports, politics, music, and everywhere else that VTK treads. Of course, there is an article devoted to its origin, which suggests:

Though the phrase has become widely identified with [Daily Show host John] Stewart, it appeared on several other television shows dating back to the early 1990s, including "Mad About You" and "Friends." But it didn't achieve widespread popularity until the beginning of the current decade, when it began to appear on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer."

Boy, what a fucking legacy. Born from the loins of the comic geniuses Paul Reiser and Helen Hunt, raised by the populist quirks from Friends and the powder puff bad ass, Sarah Michelle Geller, and now spread to the world by the increasingly not funny (and never really that funny, to be honest) John Stewart.

So the VTKid (I'm trying that new name on; came up with it last night when duffless mentioned I had a quick trigger on the comments), the VTKid is throwing down a moratorium on use of the phrase in question. I'm not sure what that means, but it definitely means that there will be repurcussions for using it within the VTK. I'm not sure what that means, but it probably means a scolding for the first offense, a severely stern warning for the second, a suspension for the third, and a lifetime ban for the fourth. And if you're thinking you've got 3 to waste before you get the bounce, think again. The VTKid don't play. And if you think giving myself a name like the VTKid and delivering free-speech-limiting ultimatums in a frivolous blog is akin to topping off the old hubris tank in preparation for a shark jump, you haven't seen the t-shirts yet. Now that's ridiculous. But VTK is about nothing if it's not about sugar coated delusions of grandeur, wrapped in prosciutto, and dipped in gumbo.

Other tid-bits:

on the recent election - many people (VTKid included) commented on how many of the Dems elected were pretty conservative and cited VA's Webb as an example. But check out this op/ed by Webb in the Wall Street Journal today, tipped and commented on by Kos. Work it, Webby. I love the attention to minimum wage in the election and its aftermath. It's even led to editorial comment within the sports pages (1/3way down), where writers tend to stay apolitical in order to not alienate readers.

on the stove - speaking of gumbo, check out this brilliantly easy way to make a passable gumbo: heat 2 punctured andouille sausages in 1/2 inch of water, save water, slice up sausages and return to water with a can of minestrone soup, reheat. serve. it's not gumbo, but it's fairly close and damn tasty for about $3.

on the random - Hoogerbrugge - probably the last cool thing I found through Screenhead (months ago). If you're bored and looking for some internet diversion, check out these great little twisted interactive animations: the neurotica series, and the website/blog (see the animation, nails, and prostress sections). I wouldn't recommend looking at these things for more than an hour though. There's your entertainment, duffless.

(images by Hoogerbrugge on this post from top to bottom: botoxer, pin-up, fuck death, barber)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Monkey Portraits

I'm so disgusted with the Celtics right now that I need to post something so that I won't have to see their uniform everytime I open up VTK. There's only one way I can work through a rage like this: via monkey portraits.

Much better. Pretty outstanding photography by Jill Greenberg. More here. Thanks as always to the nonist for the tremendous tip.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

It was a good day.

My live blog yesterday included a smattering of Hoosiers references. Great movie. Great day. So was it irony, poetry, or coincidence that I was sitting in the Boston Celtics home arena watching the C's when I heard that CNN was calling VA for the Dems? I don't know, but Jimmy Chitwood hit the shot that gave Hickory High their improbable championship, and my main man, the A-10's own, Delonte West nailed the bucket at the buzzer in OT to win the Celtics their first game of the season. You may remember Delonte Caliente from his Valentine's Day overtures, but he can ball too. You know if Pierce had any chance in hell at a shot he would have taken it and missed, as he did in regular time, but he kicked it out to Delonte and A-10 homeboy knocked it down as the red lights lit up the backboard. We'll discuss how pathetic it was for the C's to require 35 pts from Pierce and Wally (1st time 2 C's did that in 19 yrs), a triple double from Gomes, and the buzzer beater from West to overcome Doc Rivers' mystical line-up/sub strategy and beat the lowly Bobcats at home. But not now. Great fucking day. Kiss my ass, Charlotte.

(the ESPN call noted a VTKesque prediction by Cousy on the shot and the ESPN anchor saying that "this isn't Cousy's first rodeo". nice)

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Midterms - Live Blogging

[update: all morning-after coverage will proceed in the comments. I'm still on the lookout for a picture of Rick Santorum's son crying, so this one of his daughter crying will have to do for now. update 2: check out the bird on picture 3]

fuck it. I'm live blogging this fucker.

7:46 - Down goes Blackwell. The architect of the 04 Ohio Bush win gets his comeuppance. With 6% of precincts reporting, Allen 57, Webb 43. With 7% reporting, Allen 54, Webb 46. Virginia has very disparate districts, so we don't know where those precincts are from. Hopefully they're from the Southern part of the state. update - at 10% reported it's Allen 55. If Webb loses this race to Macaca, we can pretty much kiss the Senate pipe dream goodbye. I think we'd have to win TN and MO and possibly AZ, if Virginians decide that they like calling colored people monkeys.

7:55 - ok, now I'm bored...

8:00 - 16 more states just closed their polling, including MA. Did Deval Patrick win by the predicted landslide and become the first African-American governor of Massachusetts. Oh shit! Ted Kennedy just got re-elected! I can't believe it. Live blogging is so much fun. Snowe and Byrd won (of course) and Nelson beat Kitty Harris (00 FL Bush architect gets comeuppance!)

8:01 - 23% of precincts in VA - Allen 49, Webb 50!

8:08 - exit polls look favorable, but we know how that goes... waiting... waiting... will the Stem Cell vote turnout enough McCaskill voters ... aw yeah, the AK is following the live blog! Welcome.

8:14 - holy crap - 32% of VA reporting, Macaca up by a scant 700 votes. I'm predicting a recount with the Senate hanging in the balance ... could be a long night.

8:22 - goddamn it. I wish I had made my burritos before I started live blogging. how am i going to do this... Dem's just got the 1st of their 15 needed pick ups in the House: Ellsworth in Indiana. he's a wanker, but will stand with the Dems so that's something.

8:29 - Deval Patrick wins! MA has a Dem Governor!!!! Shocking that that's shocking.

8:30 - regardless of the outcome of the VA election, I will provide footage of me spanking a girl in TN. Unfortunately, that footage is in the hands of someone who is in Amsterdam right now. so that might take a while.

8:40 - CNN predicting Menendez (D) to win the Senate seat in NJ. phew. At least we didn't blow that one... Looks like my boy Capuano's running away with it over the Socialist challenger... Racist 56, Black Man 43 with 4% reporting in TN...

8:41 - bt-dubs, the spanking update was in response to a comment in the comments section. there are literally thousands of you following this live blog so I can't respond to all comments right now. other updates: I'm firing on maximum efficiency right now. I managed a bathroom break and managed to get my burrito mix in the microwave. I'll be shredding cheese over my laptop, so please excuse any misspellings... 55% reporting in VA and Macaca's up 50 to 49.

8:46 - Schumer just said that he has been told that much of Northern VA hasn't been counted yet ... sucks about your ordeal there, Duffless. I got bounced when I voted in the primary, but fortunately I'm unemployed so I was able to make it in plenty of time.

8:50 - Brown (D) wins Senate race in OH. That's one Senate seat swiped (swope?) from the GOP... and Daily Kos is calling for Casey (D) in PA, but I thought they were extending the polls there. dunno... if so, that's 2 of the necessary 6 pickups in the Senate... speaking of which, I wonder if Dick Cheney shot anyone today...

9:02 - Down goes Rick Santorum!! Suck it, scumbag. CNN being much more cautious than Kos, obviously. Hillary wins... Stabenow (d) wins in MI. That's not totally unexpected, but key. Kos reported that GOP dumped a load of cash into that race.

9:12 - Klobuchar holds in MN. That's 3 key holds. Waiting on MD. Racist Corky beating Ford 53-46 with 11 reporting in TN. Mizzou starting to come in - tied. VA is the big one though: 68% reporting, Allen 50, Webb 49 - by about 4000. Lieberdouchebag is winning 50-40-10 in CT... and fuck, they just called it for Lieberdouchebag. What a douchebag.

9:20 - Jennifer Granholm re-elected governor in MI. Now, first and foremost, lest I be labled a sexist, let me just say that she's an intelligent, charismatic, leader and a very worthy governor. So, regardless of her looks, she's a super person and I'm glad she won. ... and she's a hottie.

9:22 - MD holds! Cardin (D) wins his senate seat. so the Dems didn't screw up any of the races they were supposed to win. now they need to get 2 out of VA, TN, MO, AZ.

9:31 - Mehlmen is claiming Northern VA has already voted. but he would. Whitehouse beat Chafee in RI taking that seat for the Dems. Chafee was as good as it got as far as GOP Senators went, but at the end of the day, he's GOP. Ciao Chaf... Dems picked up a few more seats in the House too (KY,IN).... Brian has confirmed it: Granholm's a hottie.

9:43 - burrito update - the cheese is shredded, the mix is warmed and the tortillas are sitting on the counter. another update: I just ran into the living room and giddily yelled "who let the Dems out! who who who who who!" Premature giddiness + confusing chant = ? ... we're down 30k votes in VA and TN with 85% and 35% reporting respectively...

9:50 - Who let the dog-eared ladies out in Cambridge?

9:57 - It's getting crowded here in Tryst. Who knew there were so many other bloggers here.

10:08 - polls closing in MT... a Tester win could be huge... I just finished assembling the burritos; still need to do the last reheating session ... Need 3 wins out of VA, TN, MO, MT, AZ, NV. and 12 house seats. still no word on whether Cheney shot anyone today...

10:14 - No word yet on the fate of former Pittsburgh Steeler star receiver and current GOP PA gubernatorial candidate, Lynn Swann. Loved you on the field, Swanny, but I'm going to have to cut you loose on this one ... Web down by 25k with 89 reported. CNN just showed a precinct around Richmond which was very blue in 04 that hadn't reported...

10:20 - Anyone know why Jeb Bush didn't run for re-election? Crist (R) won that race... damn. CNN is showing a lot of these house races as very close ... Burritos are on the plate and delicious...

10:35 - Sean is sitting across the room from me and found out that I was eating my burritos through this live blog. that's what I'm talking about. and that ain't no macaca... Dems picked up 5 house seats so far. need 10 mo'... Bigmouth Dink Kerry is introducing Deval Patrick to the nation on live tv (CNN) right now.

10:49 - Kos has us picking up 8 seats in the House so far. Unfortunately, he's also has "civil unions taking a pounding", reminding us how many closed minded assholes there are all over this country... CNN claims Shuler (D) wins in NC, which would be 9 seats down, 6 to go.

10:59 - Kos and CNN both have the D's picking up 10 now and Negron is conceding as we speak, which brought attention to the fact that the guy who was on the ballot for the GOP, Mark Foley, is still in rehab for alcohol, which led me to opine "he probably didn't want to come out until after the election". No pun intended. ba dump bump. So they're at 11 now. House is looking like a lock at this point. Still no update on VA, TN, and MO senate races - it's been 45 fucking minutes. what is this bullshit? They just called Murphy (D) from CT for Dems, making it 12, but "10" according to Wolf Blitzer and Anderson Cooper. idiots. The boys and girls here at Tryst are going bananas. Also, Daniel Akaka just won in HI, which led to an unbearable silence waiting for Sean's mandatory Macaca joke.

11:03 - 3 more pickups by CNN's count. so that's 8. schmucks.

11:08 - Between CNN and Kos cross-analysis, we've picked up the 15 in the House!!

11:09 - CNN calls the 15. (one minute behind VTK. kiss my ass, Wolf)

11:17 - Good tip, Brian. I just switched the tube to the Daily Show's live broadcast and am following on CNN.com and kos. Not looking good for the senate. Allen still up by 20 or 30k with pretty much all reporting. Corker up in TN by 55k and 3% pts with 82 reporting and Talent up in MO by 65k and 6% pts with 42 reporting. Even if Tester wins in MT, it's unlikely that they'll win 2 of those races and/or AZ/NV. Winning the Senate would require a Hoosiersesque ending. Come on, Jimmy Chitwood!!

11:18 - Dan Rather's on the Daily Show. I wonder if he's going to cry and/or say "wherever my president wants me to line up, I'll line up".

11:24 - from this VA General Election site, that race is wicked close: with 97.26% reporting, it's Allen 49.55 to Webb 49.24. 8k votes.

11:29 - 97.42% reporting the difference is down to 0.21%. crazy close.

11:47 - 97.67% reporting, Allen 49.47 to Webb 49.33, about 3k votes. RECOUNT!!! (unless Webb makes the comeback).

Midnight - 99.10% reporting, Allen 49.43 to Webb 49.36, 0.07% difference, under 2k votes out of 2.3 million. Motherfucking recount up in that motherfucker. gotta be. Meanwhile, Tester is winning in MT, so if MO or TN somehow swung Dem, the recount would decide the Senate. ... as I predicted at 8:14 PM EST.

12:09 - now CNN has Webb up on Allen by exactly the same margin as that site has Allen up on Webb. don't know what to think. - check that - they have Webb up by 2500 votes on CNN now.

12:51 - Webb still up 2300 votes and apparently the count is going on until tomorrow. McCaskill just took the lead in MO, but it's almost as close as VA. They just called TN for Corker the Racist. Tester is up 10% in MT with 1/3 reported... The VTK Live Blog session just passed 5 hours... from Kos: "Get ready for a bloody recount in VA. MO is looking great, and MT is looking good. Control of the Senate will come down to Virginia. I'm calling it for Webb right now."

1:42 - yowserino. this thing is going down to the wire. and I'm getting a headache. Tester is losing his lead precinct by precinct with 59% reporting. McCaskill is widening her lead (84 reporting), but it won't matter if Tester doesn't hold on - well, it matters obviously, but they won't have a shot at winning the Senate and, more importantly, validating my prediction and my suggestion that a Senate win would be Hoosieresque. Right now, Tester is like the little blond guy making the free throws at the end of the semifinal. C'mon lil buddy. You can do it...

2:30 - well, I told myself that I would call the coverage at 2:30, so this is it for the live blogging. They've called the victory for McCaskill in MO. With 99.63% of the VA precincts reporting, Webb is up 1,167,053 (49.56%) to 1,159,238 (49.23%) over Macaca. Since it is under 1% difference, the recount will be on. They'll be counting provisional ballots and this thing won't be over for another few weeks, but 8000 is a pretty big lead to go into a recount with. So, it's down to Tester in MT. He's leading with 72% reporting - 7k votes and 3% points - and James Carville said that his people expect that lead to hold. I'm going to bed.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Midterm Eve Anxiety

I'm too nervous/jinx-conscious to write a full post on tomorrow's Midterm elections. But I did want to pass on this delicious photo of Bush energizing the base from Wonkette. Also, for those of you (me) without HBO, you can download/watch the Hacking Democracy special from Google Video. Please, America. Please vote these dirty bastards out in margins that are great enough to overcome their cheating.

[update: Daily Kos came out with it's predictions here. Pretty optimistic, though he's obviously conscious of the fact that media and politicos all over the country are interested to hear what he predicts, so that may skew his real thoughts.]

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Happy Bicentennial, Cocktail!

According to the Boston Globe, our old friend Cocktail is celebrating its bicentennial this year. I guess it's good that I just found out with only two months left in 06 because this knowledge almost certainly would have caused a spike in my cocktail intake (pun intended). On the history of the cocktail, the article points out the following:

Theories abound about the origin of the word "cocktail," but this year is the bicentennial of its debut in print. In 1806, an editor of the Balance and Columbian Repository wrote in response to a reader’s inquiry about the word, "Cocktail is a stimulating liquor, composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters." He then described it as an "excellent electioneering potion," something politicians might use to sway voters.

Cue Kennedy joke.

In honor of the cocktail, and assuming that Jameson's on the rocks is not technically a cocktail, I give you the VTK Top Ten Cocktail List:

10. Ward Eight - Never heard of it until today but it's from Boston, so it makes my Top Ten. Sounds delicious.
9. Prairie Fire - adding hot sauce to a shot of tequila sounds like an absolute disaster waiting to happen - and often it is - but fuck if it doesn't work out quite nicely.
8. Pina Colada - the one daquiri/fruity type drink to make my list. coconut, pineapple, and rum - brings back fond memories of the south shore of Puerto Rico.
7. Bloody Mary - there's only a couple very specific instances in which the Bloody Mary hits my spot: on airplanes and when I wake up on the floor of a house on Cape Cod.
6. Long Island Iced Tea - a devastating punch to the yarbles. a fave from the Florida days.
5. Irish Cah Bomb - Murphy's in Providence makes a great Cah Bomb, but remember: there's a 2 Cah Bomb limit.
4. Greyhound - I'm not a huge fan of vodka or grapefruit juice, but put them together and you can't argue with a Greyhound as far as summer drinks go.
3. Mojito - The Cuban classic. I also suggest the Nolito, a variation in which the sugar and water is decreased a tad and replaced with ginger ale.
2. Gin and Tonic - For some reason, I always feel better about myself when I'm drinking G and T's. I suppose it's the alcohol. Dunno.
1. The Highball - whiskey and ginger ale. what's better than that.