Saturday, June 17, 2006

It's good that she's wary.

Peter Lynn has a section in his sidebar entitled "What People Are Saying About Peter Lynn" filled with not only the ample praise he's received in comments and on the web elsewhere from readers but also the insults and outright denunciations.

The praise outweighs the criticism, but some fun highlights of the latter are

"... you almost come across as human in that story! Well done!"
"You're hated around the office, aren't you?"
"Your misery brightens my day - thank you."
"Why do you insist on ruining everything?"
"... we're no longer friends, after your gross calumny and slander on manvsclown."

He's described these to me as "strangely satisfying."

I don't plan on copying the feature, but I can certainly identify with the satisfaction that comes from people recognizing and responding to what we write. Also with the element of that satisfaction that comes from the perceptiveness evident sometimes in a less enthusiastic view. Skepticism, at least.

I personally provoke little comment or opinion with my bland and infrequent remarks here. This site is such a meager little effort that most of the visitors are hapless Googlers querying on crustaceans, BSFUC, and Equifax vice-presidents. Generally they return whence they came with nary a word, and so I tend to take for granted that the only people who hold any thought of this blog as a whole are a few of my friends and some some scattered bloggers elsewhere.

Of course, there was a time when the scope of folks I presumed to intentionally read this stuff didn't inclulde those bloggers, and I was happily surprised to discover I'd made an impression. The happy novelty of that kind of surprise hasn't worn off yet.

This morning I noticed an unfamiliar site in the referral log and, checking it out, was all too flattered by the description of me therein. It's really cool to have complete strangers appear out of nowhere and announce that I'm "very witty." That really made my morning. "I'm 'very witty,'" I'd say to myself, doing stuff around the apartment.

Also, it's a compliment to my approach with some topics, I think, that she calls me "exhaustive."

"Not exhausting," she clarifies, then qualifies that: "Well, not yet."

Some people have more patience than others, but I think it's smart of her to be prepared.

Just wait. You'll get there.

More from Dave and the clowns

Dave Louapre left a comment on this blog a few weeks ago announcing the introduction of a new cartoon on the BSFUC site. I'm not altogether sure how to feel about this.

On the one hand, it's sort of thrilling that a published author whose work I've admired and enjoyed since I was 15 comes to my pathetic rinky-dink little site to inform me of the appearance of his latest material. On the other hand, not only do I draw too little traffic to have much of an impact, I have less than perfect love for the CCA cartoons.

A Cotton Candy Autopsy was the first volume of the "Beautiful Stories for Ugly Children" series and featured a bunch of antisocial clowns who bust out of the circus and go wreak havoc. As I recall. It's been a while, and they've taken the scans down. The further adventures of one of those clowns and his two-headed freak show girlfriend from volume 13 stick in my head a little better at this point for some reason.

Each was a good story. But I didn't develop any special affection for those clowns as characters and enjoyed the other BSFUC stories that I read, which had nothing to do with them, at least as much.

Those books were brilliant. The animation that Dave and Dan have created focusing on Nick, Bingo, Addy, Foo Foo, and Joey Punchinello are not brilliant. They are amusing. That gap between what they achieved with the books and what the cartoons are disappoints me. Those cartoons are still worth taking a look at, though, certainly.

There are nits I could pick with the pieces, but there are many funny bits in several of the cartoons that I quite enjoy as well. For instance, the stuff with the random penguin cowboy in the second. The line from the fourth, " ready to shoot some rats, baby?"

Update: Two things. First, a much stronger endorsement comes from a friend who, walking in as I was finishing this post, caught the end of one of the cartoons and roared with laughter. Roared. Which leads us to (the stupidly neglected) thing two: Here's the link. Go and check them out.

Second Update: Fixed a typo in the first full sentence of the first update. Because I hate that stuff.

I Wear My Sunglasses at Nightfly

Emily points to this Nightfly post in which he entertainingly deconstructs the 1984 Corey Hart song "Sunglasses at Night" and tries to decipher the gibberish lyrics. My favorite bits were probably
Those opening bars sound like something Dave Stewart and Annie Lennox cooked up as a gag when they were hung over, then thought about for 2.3 seconds and said, “Ha ha ha, OK, seriously..."
You’re wearing plaid with a flying shade of gold!

Well, that would be a fashion nightmare.
At least until I considered the title more closely. I didn't know what he meant by it until I said it out loud, and then I thought it was damn clever. I think I prefer that other one, though I can't find the whole thing to listen to.

"Sunglasses at Night" is more easily available though. Which leads to trouble for me. My reaction to Nightfly's post was threefold. First, I laughed at some funny lines.

Second, all this attention on Corey Hart called to mind the blog Corey Hart Drives a Fiero, which comes from Kyle MacDonald of One Red Paperclip fame and which is a blog of satirical madness along the lines of the horse hater or Chewbacca's blog. I never meant when I got up this morning (or any day this week) to think this much about Corey Hart, but anything that leads back to Chewbacca's blog is OK with me. Chewbacca invented awesome.

Thirdly, though, I started listening closely to the words of "Sunglasses at Night" to see if I could hear the words Nightfly imagines hearing. (And thanks to Kathy K. for teaching me the word "mondegreen.") Mostly, I couldn't. It's too bad, though, that the words aren't really what he mishears them as, because the actual lyrics don't make any damn sense either. At least his don't pretend to.

Figuring that out, I left the song on repeat. And then I let it play not only while reading through his post and its comments but also while writing this, because it only seemed right. However, Emily's assessment of it as "atrocious" may be fair. It's certainly not a good song. And as long as this sort of stuff takes me, I must have listened to it thirty times straight.

I need to go wash out my ears.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Come on now.

I wonder if it's a coincidence or someone's cleverness at work when I log into eMusic today and find in the section headed "Your New Arrivals" that two of the three featured albums are "Come On Pilgrim" and "No, You C'mon."

The amusement value of this is undiminished by the explanation in the album review that "No, You C'mon" was released by the band Lambchop simultaneously with its companion album "Aw C'mon." Instead it is enhanced by the discovery that this band is apparently fronted by the blue, devil-shaped teleporting mutant Kurt Wagner.

Square Miles

While reading this interesting old article about Ruby Ridge by Alan W. Bock, I encountered this perplexing sentence:
It’s about 10 miles square, but because mountains rise on either side of the valley through which State Highway 95 runs, only an area about two miles by eight miles is inhabited.
Use of the word "only" implies the area inhabited here is smaller than the area covered by the zip code, but isn't "an area about two miles by eight miles" equal to about sixteen miles square and consequently larger than the 10 miles square of the Naples zip code?

If Bock's contruction actually makes sense, I wish someone would explain it to me.