Gates-gate, a Brouhaha in Three Acts

posted by Stal on 2009.08.06, under Stal

If ye be yearning for the return of Talk Like Shakespeare Day, there be good tidings from the intersection of Elizabethan English and contemporary events.

In a most excellent three-act drama by the staff of the Boston Globe, the tale of Gates-gate and its eventual resolution through the aid of King Barack and some good ales unfolds. Tis certainly a worthy read in its entirety, but for the laggards among us, here’s a taste:

AXELROD: [...] What here? A saucy tale from Cambridgeham. The Sheriff has arrested a Moor for crimes unbefitting a gentleman.

BARACK: Stupid sheriffs arrest many Moors.

AXELROD: Perhaps in the Chicagoland of our youthful acquaintance, my lord. Not so many in Cambridgeham. ’Tis a most gentil and parfit place.

BARACK: Who is the man, and what is his crime?

AXELROD: ’Tis the Most Exalted University tutor Gates. Back has he spoken to the Sheriff, unbidden.

BARACK: Gates? I know this man. We have supped together on the enchanted Isle of Martha’s Vineland. I have seen him with Lady Oprah, prating about his ancestry.

AXELROD: Perhaps a photo op, my lord? We invite Gates and the Sheriff here, quaff ale in the summer heat, and proclaim peace and brotherhood among all men.

BARACK: And savor tobacco from the Duke of Marlboro?

AXELROD: Not with the people watching, sire.

[ A Tale Told by an Idiot / Boston Globe ]

President of the Flies

posted by Stal on 2009.06.17, under Stal

(as mentioned at lunch)

This morning in a press conference for financial markets regulatory reform, Obama showed that though he had Rahm around to do his dirty work,  he too could lay the smackdown.

“Get out of here,” the commander-in-chief ordered a fly that was buzzing him during the interview.

The insect ignored the presidential order.

Obama waited for the fly to land and then, in one swift blow, smacked it dead.

“That was pretty impressive, wasn’t it?” Obama asked interviewer John Harwood. “I got the sucker.”

Here is the PETA statement on Obama’s actions: “He isn’t the Buddha, he’s a human being and human beings have a long way to go before they think before they act.”

[ Via USA Today ]

Blogging the internets

posted by Heath on 2009.05.28, under Heath

Since this blog has been heavily focused on internet culture, I thought I would keep my first post on-topic.

First, from the British magazine Prospect (via NYT), apparently they need an e-mail tax:

The time has come for a public sector remedy: a tax, perhaps no more than 2p, or 3c, on every email sent. Opponents will argue that collecting the tax is impossible or unfair. Yet the status quo is unworkable. Since early 2007 the global volume of spam has more than trebled. To stop this blizzard of unwanted messages, ISPs and most large businesses spend a sizeable chunk of their IT budget filtering out obvious junk. Despite this, most of us spend time each day clicking “delete”—and the deluge is getting worse. A unit tax on email would stop most spam.

The article brings up many of the most obvious objections; however, IMO, life would be less interesting without random people sending me e-mails with titles like “Become Superman” and “You Russia lvoe is her!”

In other internet culture news, the president is apparently planning on appointing a cybersecurity czar.  The czar “will have the most comprehensive mandate granted to such an official to date and will probably be a member of the National Security Council but will report to the national security adviser as well as the senior White House economic adviser”.  The czar will also be tasked with making sure nobody hurts the talking kittens. (h/t INFRASTRUCTURIST)

Seen at Collegetown Bagels

posted by Stal on 2009.05.04, under Stal


I wonder what proportion of Americans had even heard of Fannie Mae before 2007.

Auto-Tuner News Pastiche

posted by Stal on 2009.04.24, under Stal

Proof that everything sounds better with an auto-tuner, even newscasts. Shawtay!

AG: I’m an angry gorilla. I heard you needed me (ooh ooh ah ah)
SH: Now that Captain Phillips has been successfully rescued
The president has decided to step in front of the spotlight
AG: Ooh, I’m angry! You can’t see it, but my forehead’s veiny
SH: And even take some credit for the rescue
AG: Well, don’t you worry, baby boo
You’ll always have an angry gorilla to be angry with you
That’s what I do. Just ask Donkey Kong. He’s in my crew

[ hat tip: KM ]

Number of Pirates Killed by each President

posted by Stal on 2009.04.14, under Stal