IF YOU HAVEN'T GOTTEN RID OF THE FRAME ABOVE, CLICK HERE [an error occurred while processing this directive]
days until Y2K...
ONE day until OXY2K.
Until then, check out The Food Pornography Foopinion
or The President's Analyst Review
or re-read the November 'blog (Find the most typos and misspelings and win a prize!), all in...
One Swell Foop: Content, context, comment, connections and comic relief
Not really under construction, more like remodeling, and you can't believe how hard it is to teach HTML to a carpenter named Norm!
The official registered URL is: www.oneswellfoop.com, but for now, all links lead to: oneswellfoop.tripod.com which I attempt to explain here.
All questions, complaints, suggestions, compliments or expressions of apathy are being accepted at oneswellfoop@mail.com
November 28, 1999
Rule Number One on the Internet: Don't Trust Anybody/Anything Too Much
I violated that rule during the Thansgiving gathering when I showed off the Foopsite and some of the things it linked to to non-web-savvy family and in-laws. I trusted the Wu-Name Generator too much.
After previously checking for names that might be considered offensive by the thin-skinned (and using alternate spellings, for example, for the in-law who came up as "Homicidal Controller"), I jumped from the Foop to the Generator (should've been suspicious with the change in their form page), started showing off Wu-Names and discovered they'd changed the algorithm and all of the names had been changed (and they did not protect the innocent). So, Wendell the Undiscovered Thang is now Violent Toilet Thing, the Incidental Tommyknockah is now Inscrutable Drama Queen, and both New fast Automatic Shaolin (my father) and Dirty Little Toilet Thing (my dog) have been changed to Pre-Raphaelite Shaolin (At least Homicidal Controller has been toned down to Loose-Lipped Controller). Still too many surprises for the crowd I was playing to.
One suspicious note: the only unchanged Wu-Name I could find was the famous weblogger who has "Spunky Misunderstood Genius" - he must've bribed somebody for that name.
November 25, 1999, gobble, gobble
Is that Scully in the dress, or J. Edgar Hoover?
So what's considered a "grand slam home run" for somebody doing a parody/spoof/hoax on the web? According to Trip Wired News, it's when the FBI comes knocking at your door. After the creator's site was taken down by his ISP (note the URL: "www.crowdedtheater.com". Altogether, now: "FI-I-IRE!"), these people have picked up the hot potato and run with it.
No, it doesn't give me any ideas I didn't already have (bwahahahahaha!)
For the record...
I am Undiscovered Thang (though my birth cerificate says Incidental Tommyknockah).
My wife is Superintendant Panther (her maidenname is Acrobatic Sad-Faced Clown) and my dog is Dirty Little Toilet Thing
How does the Wu-Name Generator do it?
I've enjoyed looking up the wu-names of relatives (New Fast Automatic Shaolin), in-laws (Homicidal Controller - ruh roh[ø]), co-workers (Drunk-Eyed Librarian - this group came out surprisingly lame) and other webloggers (anybody wanna guess who "New Fast Automatic Case Study" is? Although I think "Spunky Misunderstood Genius" paid somebody for that name).
Still, I like the even-more-random non-sequitority of (Not Stan) Lee's Superhero Generator which named me WOMBATIAC!, with the super-powers of Enhanced Senses, Cosmic Awareness and Power Mimicry, and the super-weapon of the Fungal Neutralizer (though I preferred The Mad Specter's mode of transportation, the Millenium Pogo Stick!!!)
Inside the Bonfire - A Weblogger Is There
Steven Baum's Ethel the Blog continues to leapfrog (leapblog?) over the others to become my favorite place on the web to raise your IQ a point or two. (Here ya go, S.B., the start of your own Quote-a-Matic) I am so glad he's the closest 'blogger to the tragic Texas A&M Bonfire Logpile Collapse, which he adeptly disected in his 11/24 entry titled Vanities of the Bonfire. ABSOLUTELY RECOMMENDED READING. THIS IS WHAT WEB-JOURNALISM SHOULD BE, AND I DON'T DO BOLD-ITALIC-CAPS FOR JUST ANYBODY!
It's just too bad he doesn't have a job in the U.S. offices of EgyptAir... then we'd REALLY know what happened to Flight 990.
Stake and Sushi?
Is it safe to take Buffy, the Vampire Slayer off my list of "guilty TV pleasures" and onto my list of "the best shows on TV"? If X-Files has made sci-fi respectable and Ally McBeal redefined comedy, can't we admit that, even on a bad week, Josh Whedon's creation matches or beats them both? Maybe, now that the main characters are officially "college-age", persons of MY age demographic can watch without feeling like we've snuck into the Totally Teens Chat Room.
Buffy has the sharpest, smartest dialogue coming from younger characters since Dobie Gillis or ANY characters since Moonlighting, and doesn't rely on repetitive set pieces, plot templates or catch-phrases. And I was reminded of that by a moment in the 11/23 episode - a throwaway line - that quoted a '60s TV show that was exactly the opposite. The entire cast was under attack from Indigenous-Native-American-Indian-Whatever poltergeists seeking revenge against the White-Man (yes, sometimes the supernatural plotlines get too threadbare to suspend your disbelief, but they are best taken as just the backdrop to hang the characters, action and dialogue onto). The now-hapless vampire Spike (whose "impotent Vampire" dialogue with Willow the previous week was ROTFLMAO), frantically trying to beg foregiveness from the angry Indian spirits, blurted out the classic cliche' from Get Smart: "Sorry about that, Chief!" (I wonder if anybody else caught that? Or did they just do the line for ME?)

So, if Buffy's off the "guilty TV pleasures" list, what's going to replace it? Well, the new keeper of Ain't-It-Cool-News's Coaxial (i.e. TV) Pages, a kooky compadre called El Cosmico, pointed out his favorite in his first posting: Food Network's Japanese import, Iron Chef.
Let me take this occassion to officially state that the epinion on Food Network posted by F.E.A.S.T. under my I.D. does not necessarily reflect my personal views, but it makes for a good cross-promotion.
Iron Chef is no Iron Giant (you were wondering how long it'd take me to mention THAT again, weren't ya?), but it is a strange hybrid of cooking show and sporting event, which the unofficial English-language Iron Chef fansite confesses borrows a little from pro wrestling: the "theme ingredient" is not really a surprise to the competing chefs (they're given a list of five possibilities in advance), the home-team wins 80 percent of the time, and the "eccentric millionaire gourmet" known as Chairman Kaga who supposedly organized the whole thing is really an actor who starred in Japanese stage productions of Le Miz, West Side Story and Jesus Christ Superstar. (He's not really God, he just plays one on TV... I always wanted to say that.)
So, mix Martin Yan (no nasty e-mails, I know he's CHINESE) and Stone Cold Steve Austin (I promised myself never to do a direct link to anything WWF), add Godzilla-style dubbing and music from Backdraft, and it sure beats Walker Texas Ranger on Saturday night.
November 22, 1999
Shep's Gone, but Petey's Only Grown Up
Hey, Webloggers: There's still time to pick your own personal has-been for the Foop's Webloggers Adopt Ex-Celebrities campaign. I just wanted to announce that I am realeasing my "dibs" on all the formerly-famous I mentioned in favor of concentrating all my efforts on promoting Peter Billingley, the kid from Jean Shepherd's A Christmas Story. As the article from E!online, aka exclamation-point-dot-com shows, he's is absolutely NOT as bad off as Gary Coleman (that's good, I like more achievable goals), but anybody whose personal domain name (www.peterbillingsley.com) points to somebody else's personal website (singer Brian Evans, his collaborator on the "Christmas Stories & Christmas Songs" CD), needs a little extra spin management. I'm here for ya, Petey! You know where to find me! (oneswellfoop@mail.com)
"Good Grief" IS an Oxymoron
Charles Schulz, the creator of Charlie Brown (not the song), Woodstock (not the festival), Peppermint Patty (not the candy) and Snoopy (there is no other), is reportedly suffering from colon cancer. Ironically, the Sunday strip for 11/21 is one of my favorites EVER (registration may be required to access), using Snoopy to make a statement on conformity that usually would fall on Good Ol' Charlie Brown:
The moral is: "Don't do anything, and you'll be a good dog".

Speaking of good dogs, animator Mark O'Hare, whose name shows up on the credits of some of the better individual episodes of Nickelodeon cartoons, also does a comic strip titled Citizen Dog. While it started out as a generic talking-animal pun-and-slapstick gag cartoon of the Garfield variety, Cit Dog has been stretching lately, with topical bits like a new variation on a familiar pledge.
I pledge allegience to the commercials on our one-hundred channels of television...
And a sequence of strips showing two fish debating evolution vs. creationism, as they prove a point by evolving themselves.
Look at me! I'm an amphibian!
Yep, bein' man's best friend is no bed of roses.
The "Brave New World" Has Run Away Screaming
Here are two headlines from Yahoo News that have to push hot buttons all over the poitical spectrum. From Reuters (and I quote): Clinton, European Left Embrace Brave New World.
President Clinton prescribed the Internet as a cure for unemployment on Sunday at a summit where center-left European leaders agreed old socialist policies could not deliver in a global economy.
And from AP: Clinton Calls for Sharing Wealth
President Clinton, worrying about "people and places that are completely left behind," called on prosperous nations Sunday to spread global wealth by helping poor countries with Internet hookups, cell phones, debt relief and small loans.
Were these two writers at the same place at the same time? Or did one (or both) of them just slide in on the 4:15 wormhole?

Also present at this meeting (of course) was British Prime Timer Tony Blair, who has called his and Clinton's policies "the radical center", earning him a place of honor in my Oxymoron list, and whose wife's suprise pregnancy has prompted an Irish bookmaker to set odds on the birth (50-1 against twins) and the progeny's future (66-1 against marrying a member of the Royal family). No word on the odds whether the baby's real father turns out to be Bill Clinton.
November 19, 1999
It's official, Fox News has dropped Drudge, and I haven't gotten any response to my job app e-mail, so I have to assume they're giving the show to Mahir... Sigh.
Yahoo Loves Ya, Baby?
If you drill deeply enough into Yahoo, you'll stike (A) oil, (B) water, (c) lava or (D) editorial comment. Correct answer: (D), because there's a sub-category in the "cool sites" department for Disturbing Trends. Here's another one to add to the list, from Piano Wired: Has-been (and never-shoulda-been) celebrities using web sites to make comebacks. To me, the most interesting thing is that the embarrassing Save Gary Coleman campaign was started by some publicity-hungry site and Gary himself only signed on later. So, continuing my practice of ever-increasing crassness, how about a Webloggers Adopt Ex-Celebrities campaign? I got dibs on Graham Kerr (the Galloping Gourmet), Fred Grandy (Love Boat's Gopher and ex-Congressman) and all seven co-hosts of Real People.
More Than You Need to Know About Wendell Department
Wendell Willkie In preparing for my triumphant appearance at the L.A.Radio site (gee, it LOOKS kinda like a weblog), I was asked to provide a JPEG picture of myself. Now, for reasons of public safety, my face has never been formally digitized (unless Los Angeles Magazine has an archive somewhere going back to 1977), so I had to search the web for another Wendell. In the process of finding the postage stamp with unsuccessful presidential candidate Wendell Willkie, I also uncovered Ask Wendell, a part of the Yucky kids site, so, Wendell has to be a really cute cartoon character, right?
He's a worm.
I don't get no respect.
November 18, 1999
With the developing story that the Fox News Channel and Matt Drudge may be nearing a parting of the ways (Neither Mr. Drudgery nor the anti-Drudge have anything on his site about it, as of Midnight PST)...
------Original Message------
From: Wendell Wittler <oneswellfoop@mail.com>
To: <viewerservices@foxnews.com>
Sent: November 18, 1999 8:51:32 AM GMT
Subject: Potential Opening in Weekend Schedule

Dear Sirs and/or Madams (you never know if your e-mail is gonna get forwarded to Paula Zahn):
I have become aware of a possible timeslot in your Saturday schedule becoming available due to Mr. Matt Drudge acting like a poopyhead, and wish to offer my services to fill the airtime.
I, like Mr. D., have a website (www.oneswellfoop.com) and fill it with irregularly-scheduled postings of dubvious content. I have even entered the field of investigative reporting in material for the epinions.com site (The Truth About Minneapolis), which has the potential to be a headline story for at least 2-3 hours.
My site has only been semi-operational for a little over a month, but from the very beginning (a little over a month ago), my goal has been to challenge the Drudgester and, untimately, step all over his weasely little face. I can give you the opportunity to catch a rising web star near the very beginning of his upswing, with all the obvious advantages (I still work cheap). After all, you brought in El Drudgerino at the very peak of his popularity, and have experienced his inevitable decline, a mistake you do not wish to repeat (so don't hire Mahir).
I do also have a level of broadcast media experience that Der Drudgeki did not have when he started on Fox News; while in college, I worked as a call screener for radio talk shows. That experience has proven invaluable in giving me the ability to identify crackpots from all walks of life.
I regret to notify you that I am currently undergoing some major dental work, so my personal trademark smile will not be available for the next few weeks, but considering the lighting (or lack thereof) used by the Drudgoid, I think we would be able to creatively obscure even a severely swolen jaw.
Anyway, please accept this application for the pending opening. I believe you won't go wrong if you give me a chance. I could raise the level of journalism at Fox News whether I know what I'm doing or not.

Respectfully yours,
Wendell Wittler
Alleging on his own time
Quark's Cafe Americaine
After two months of Voyager being the only first-run Star Trek, I really miss DS9. Of the 17-million Trek fan-sites, my favorite is one that features a comprehensive list of the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition. Laws to live by for today's dot-com IPO.
My regular Google for the term "oxymoron" turned up The Klingon Imperial Diplomatic Corps at "klingon.org". It's good to know the Klingons are non-profit...
The Queen of Bad Hair found this site, which should be particularly valuable for webloggers going on hiatus: Authors Anonymous. (You have nothing to lose but your carpal tunnel)
Courtesy of the E-without-the-bay, here is the shocking secret behind the Millionaire game show... it's the amount of time edited out of the show waiting for "the final answer".
So Who Wants to Be in THAT Studio Audience?
November 16, 1999
For the record, when contacted by the hack-watchers at attrition.org, I issued the following statement:
If anyone were to ask me directly, I would vehemently deny setting up that page myself, either as (1) a web-based parody of the attention given to "famous hackers", (2) a new web hoax to gain the interest of those tired of Mahir and the models' egg auction or (3) a naked play for publicity for a cheesy little weblog.
Of course, if it were a hoax, I would hope no one who CAN hack my site would be offended. I mean, I wouldn't want anyone to actually believe that the ULG watch "I.M.Weasel" cartoons...
Beautiful But Deadly Department
The latest nasty computer virus is called FunLove. Now, frankly, I think we've exceeded the normal limits of irony with "cute" names for "un-cute" viruses. Melissa, Bubble-boy... And the Non-Evil Twin found a reference to a malicious process calledSmurfing!
It doesn't help that the worst hurricane of the season was named Floyd, and now, here comes Lenny!.
Then, to add injury to the insult of mean cuteness, here's a story of how ladybugs can cause athsma! I guess A Bug's Life was more accurate than I thought... Denis Leary IS the perfect ladybug!
It all feels like the flip side of the early Saturday Night Live commercial parody, "Fluckers" (in the show's first cast album), a take-off on the "With a name like Smuckers, it's got to be good!" ads, in which competing brands of jam got more and more disgusting names (and that was done with '70s network censors... imagine how disgusting they could get today!) Of course it was written by Michael O'Donoghue.
Laugh and the World Laughs With You... Cry and You Got a Shot at the Oscar(tm)
Of special interest for you celluloid droids who believe the AFI screwed up on its list of the 100 Best Movies of the Century: They're making a list of the 100 Best Comedies. It's for a TV special scheduled for next June (not good enough for the May Sweeps?), and a so-called blue-ribbon panel will pick the honorees from a list of 500. In E!'s usual overblown style, they point out some movies on the list that aren't thought of as comedies (Pulp Fiction, My Fair Lady) and others that shouldn't be (Freaky Friday? Does Jodie Foster even admit she was in it?). Well, at least The President's Analyst made the list. Now how can I help to remind the "blue-ribboners" of the merits of this '60s classic? Stay tuned for the President's Analyst Tribute Website. Yeah, that'll do it.
Milk, Eggs, Iron Giant...
I think I can stop worrying about the success of The Iron Giant's video release. If you go to the web site for Ralphs Supermarkets in Southern California, and follow the links to checkout.com (and put up with the pop-up windows), they'll give you a $15 in free groceries when you buy the $14.98 video. Ralphs has been borged [ø] by the mega-market Kroger Corporation, but I couldn't find the same offer at the sites of other Krogerites like Smiths or Fred Meyer. Sorry. Maybe you ought to tell your local store manager how much nicer the L.A. stores are than they are.
Another encouraging word from Garrison Public Radio's The World. Monday's "GeoQuiz" location was Oulu, Finland, where the Iron Bigguy is the opening night attraction at a World Children's Film Festival. And it's a Pokemon-free zone! Those Finns got class.
Random Links
If Oxygen is supposed to be a web site for women, why'd they choose for the site name a word with XY in it? Just wondering.
Mikey Larks It brings to my attention the Javascript version of "The Name Game". One warning: if you're under 18, never play it with the name Chuck. (Banana fanna fo-WHAT?)
The Foop's Campaign Coverage: Derision 2000
UGOTO [ø] Headline of the Millenium: Bush Says Sobriety Changed His Life. Hey, man, it was SUPPOSED to! Even the ghostwriter of his autobiography is a knucklehead!
Meanwhile, the current knuckleheaded President was in Turkey yesterday. He denied all rumors that he went there to get romantic advice from Mahir. He apparently spoke out for Freedom of Speech, so that no one will ever again be jailed for using seven exclamation points in a row on a web page.
As long as I've broken the embargo on the subject, the Turkish Stud's nothing compared to The Turkey Stud!!!!!!! (oh, you Brad Boy).
I have always relied on the kindness of strangers... and look where I ended up!
Thanks to J. Schusterbauer of Yahooville, W.W.W., for bringing the bad link in the Rona Barrett reference to my attention. Since he is the first total webstranger to help me out in this way, I'm "verbing" his name in my lexicon. So, when you hear me say I've been Schusterbauered [ø], know that it's a GOOD thing.
BTW: I'm following the lead of Whimegar and Meta-ley in using a little marker (I call it the foopmark) for links to my "8 by 10 Glossary" or other parts of "Foop Disclosure".
November 11, 1999
Risk Management Department (an oxymoron)
This may be my biggest day ever for "topical convergence", the serendipity of two or more unrelated news stories actually being related in some strnage way...
So, there's nothing to worry about with Y2K.... unless you're having some other emergency at the time.
Solar flares may end up disrupting things Y2K can't... but asteriods on collision course with Earth may be less dangerous than we thought.
And, all in one day, heart medicine that could "save millions", and another heart medicine that does no better than aspirin, but Tylenol(TM) may be as good as aspirin(formerly a TM), and guys ought to know all these facts if they have trouble getting it up, which everyone knows is what scares guys the most.
Here's one more scary thought: FoopContent Syndicated All Over the Web.
November 10, 1999
Direct from Just Outside the Entertainment Capital of the World,
It's The North Hollywood Reporter,
Now, With Extreme Seinfeld!!
Jerry Seinfeld is officially engaged. His new fiancé is reported to be a Public Relations professional. A Sein-spokesman says the wedding arrangements are "a private affair". But if you believe the E! version of the story, it was never a private affair, they were very Public Relations. (Sorry. Couldn't resist.)
Jerry is reportedly preparing himself for married life by watching reruns of Mad About You.
Meanwhile, The latest nasty e-mail virus is named after a character in a Seinfeld episode.
No, it's not "Mulva"!
Our long national nightmare is over: David Copperfield and Claudia Schiffer have broken up.
Let's start a rumor that she's dating Teller.
The winner of the election for President of the Screen Actors Guild is: the voice of the car on Knight Rider!!
That's William Daniels, also of Boy Meets World, St. Elsewhere, and a hundred other fuddy-duddy roles, including the "normal suburbanite" in The President's Analyst (Have I mentioned it's one of my all time favorite movies?)
He also played the title role in a short-lived superhero spoof sitcom Captain Nice, which the IMDb inexplicably has a collection of quotes from.
Daniels defeated incumbant Richard Masur, who may be best known for falling into a freezer on Picket Fences.
And both of them are more qualified than half the candidates for President of the United States.
Forget about Cameron and Damien and Grant and even Craig:
My favorite Barrett is Miss Rona!
November 9, 1999
Dedicated to all of you who believe the new AltaVista could have been designed by a 14-year old kid...
I'm NOT good enough, I'm NOT smart enough, and darn it, people barely tolerate me!
I would probably rather post nude pictures of myself with Dr. Laura rather than post my writer's rejection letters. I don't think I'd have the nerve to post my ACCEPTANCE letters. But the Metascene-stealer found the website of Bryan Byun, a deeply masochistic writer who did post them (the letters, not the pictures, I don't even think he HAS nude pictures with Dr. Laura like I do... I think I'll shut up now)

The highlight of the collection is a not-so-ancient Chinese rejection letter. How can you get mad at an editor who puts his head at your feet? (Punt!)
In other parts of his site, Mr. Byun takes self-effacing to a new level. (Kids, don't try this at your homepage)
"My Name Is Mac, and I'll Be Your Web Server This Evening..."
Now here's an example of web-based community, FlyInTheSoup.com, web site for, about and sometimes by the food service community. The jobs/resumes section ("Will Work for Food") is not yet operational, the "Tasty Links" department is mostly show-biz-related (confirming a log-held assumption about waiters here in L.A.), but the Waiter/Waitress Horror Story Contest is the site's highlight, and they're just getting started. (The first monthly winner is a tale of twice-eaten pizza)
One warning: don't read these tales if you're planning on going out to eat anytime in the next six months! I even had to throw out all my frozen food with restaurant brand names (Wolfgang Puck and Marie Callendar should never have shared the same freezer anyway)
P.S.: The site looks like it was designed by a busboy. And decent web designers NEVER have to moonlight as busboys.
Topical Convergence Department
The Interface Hall of Shame, reccommended by Farmer Lark.
The Top 10 Interfaces, reccommended by Dr. Hack
The latter appears in the new issue ofMIT's Technology Review. I actually found myself recently in a doctor's waiting room where I found a copy of the July/August edition of Tech Review. In it, I found the most fascinating short article by a computer columnist/consultant with the unlikely name of Simson L. Garfinkel about his experience as an expert witness in the case of ISP ex-employee acused of hacking his ex-employer, in which he stumbles onto evidence that turned into the high-tech equivalent of a Perry Mason courtroom surprise. I thought it was a perfect story for a young weblog to link to, but much to my annoyance, the magazine had not included it in its on-line version (And Simson's personal site doesn't have it either). What kind of science publication keeps a computer/internet article OFF its website? MIT's, that's who. CalTech wouldn't have made that mistake.
November 8, 1999
As any of several Hanna-Barbera cartoon dogs would say: "Ruh roh!"
Follow-up on my concerns about the way they're promoting the video release of Iron Giant:
Received my semi-monthly junk-snail-mail from Lackluster Video the other day, containing large plugs for video releases in the next two weeks and small blurbs for coming attractions beyond that, and nothing from IG! In the store, where I was cashing in their 2-for-1 coupon to rent a couple movies I had intentionally avoided in the theaters, a big sign behind the check-out counter featured new releases thru the 23rd, but no IG! Could it be the company that owns one-third of the home video business is passing on the Giant? At least on the corporate website, IG is there, listed for the 23rd, right above the South Park Movie. The South Park Movie on video the same day?!? This definately does not give me what Buffy would call "warm fuzzies". And when Buffy doesn't have the warm fuzzies, EVERYBODY's in mortal danger.
I keep thinking of things they could have done to promote the Iron Bigguy... Pop-song movie tie-ins tend to make me cringe (lost all faith in Smash Mouth with that "All Star" sell-out), but I could've really enjoyed being serenaded by They Might Be Iron Giants.
And IG is not the first time Warner Brothers dropped the ball on a better-than-average animated film... and I am NOT talking about Quest for Camelot, which deserved to fail if only to save us from the marketing of two-headed dragon dolls. I am talking about Cats Don't Dance, a Hollywood-based story about "a star-struck kitty from Kokomo" that mixes the essence of '30s musicals with the essence of '30s cartoons. Just don't compare it to Roger Rabbit, and ignore Scott Bakula as the voice of the hero, and you'll enjoy it. Like all the other unsuccessful attempts to challenge Disney animation, it gets a play on the Disney Channel, this Wednesday (November 10), at 7:30PM.
So, Cats Don't Dance. They don't take pills very well either (answering the question, how many versions of the same joke can you get in your e-mail in one day?).
In Other News That's Fit to Print...
The New York Times has published a new Stylebook.
Don't write that the late Senator opposed a bill because he was most surely alive at the time.
The good news is: now you can use the word "wannabe", even if you don't.
Bobbing and weaving is not a bad editing technique (I'm putting that one in Murphy's Law Library).
Women's Writes
I guess I'm not supposed to look at Oxygen.com, having that unfortuate Y chromosome and other uniquely male baggage. But I do. Otherwise I'd miss the latest writings of one of my favorite humorists of any gender, Merrill Markoe. Considering how the "O2"site is organized, and its resistance to actually naming any of the women who write for them (with one big exception: O2's got Oprah), I came close to missing her even after I knew shew was there. (But I did lose the source for my Merrill link... whoever you are, thank you) O2 published two of her essays in two days, but, based on the site's schedule (as confusing as it's structure), we'll have to wait either 2-and-a-half or 5 weeks between her contributions. I can wait. I've followed MM thoughout her post-Dave period (Letterman, not Winer, you ninny), from being the "human interest" reporter at L.A.'s lowest rated newscast to doing a "He Said/She Said" radio talk show with a guy named Crummey. I have to admire someone with a stranger resume than mine.
November 5, 1999
The More Things Change Dept.
General Electric, company behind nuclear power plants and NBC (which one is more dangerous?), is introducing a new type of oven they call the Advantium.
GE harnassed the power of light to bake, broil, brown, roast and even grill in an average of one-fourth the time as a conventional oven.
This is new? I distinctly remember the girl-next-door when I was 9-and-a-half had an oven that worked the same way.
Giant News
The same marketeers who dropped the ball so badly on the theatrical release of Iron Giant, the Weblog Nation's Favorite Movie (American Beauty is a close second, but it made money, so it doesn't count), are now enlisting the aid of members of Congress to endorse the movie. And they're talking like being reccommended by members of Congress is a GOOD thing... I smell disaster.
Second thought: If IG's going to make his way among the NRA lobbyists, he'd better downplay the "I am not a gun" bit, right?
The Good, the Brad and the Ugly
Picking up OutLandIshBrad's thread on good/bad sites:
I've Been Good is a Christmas gift registry that wisely also bought the domain name I've Been Bad (Would I EVER link you to a B&D site? Nah...)
There's not much that's good enough, and nothing is average. (Of course, Not Much is for people who DON'T want to be a millionaire)
And, is your ISP better than most? (This is ABSOLUTELY NOT an endorsement)
And nobody else is doing much that's swell.
Speaking of swellness, some folks will charge you $35 for an "online trademark search", another service you can get for free directly from the dot-gov. Searching the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Online Database, (thankyouthankyouthankyou Wizard of Cam) I learned that NOBODY has a trademark with the word "foop", and there are only 23 trademarks with "swell", including "You Can Tell It's Mattel, It's Swell!", and "Sparky's Really Swell Stuff", reportedly available at Universal Studios Theme Parks. Armed with this information, I prepare for the first OneSwellFoop Merchandising Blitz! In other words, I think I'll have a t-shirt made, but NOT by them.
Carey On, My Wayward Son
High on my list of phrases I wish I'd coined is also one of the few slow-loading sites I'd wait for: Jump The Shark, referring to the moment when a TV series "loses it" (see Hi-Octane Ethel for a better explanation). The November Ratings Sweeps are a time when a lot of shark-jumping happens, but this may be a first: The Drew Carey Show, past perpetrator of two April's Fool shows, "Drew in China", a guest appearance by Daffy Duck, and more musical numbers than I WANT to count, is going to do TWO shark-bait episodes in the next two weeks. First, on November 10th, it'll be a "partially improvised" (their words not mine) episode performed live three times (for all U.S. time zones). Considering how awful Carey can be when he joins in on the improv on his "other" show, Who's Line Is It Anyway, this could be more painful to watch than Bobby's death on NYPD Blue.
Then, on November 17th, in an unprecedented pandering to the Internet community, Scary Carey attempts a simultaneous Webcast of a "special point-of-view" version of his show via what they're calling the "Drew-Cam" (NOW I know what to call Cam Barrett if I ever really want to insult him!). Using the combined technological knowhow of ABC, Warner Brothers and Microsoft's WindowsMedia, you can expect this event to dig deep potholes into the Information Superhighway.
November 1, 1999
...And the Presidential Election's Still a Web-Decade Away.
A reporter for the Times of London tries to explain the U.S. Presidential campaign by relating the candidates to characters in the cartoon Wacky Races. Now that's pennicillin-resistant-nostalgia! I didn't even know Hanna-Barbera were ever allowed to export that Mad Cow to Britain! Of course, the analagy is already breaking down, with the withdrawl from the race of "Penelope Pitstop", aka Liddy Dole (President of the SECOND Wives Club). Well, at least he didn't go with the old cliche when one woman was running against several uninspiring men: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. (If I recall, when they use that analagy, Dopey usually wins).
Al Gore is apparently trying to put a positive spin on the challenge from Bill Bradley. Kind of a "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger" approach. Of course, when I hear that line in a movie, it's usually being said by somebody getting drunk with over-120-proof alcohol.
Alan Keyes' performance in the Republicans' mini-debate got some attention. Yes, it was a performance. Buchanan in blackface.
Somebody did a poll on the "Scariest Character of All Time", and surprisingly, none of the Presidential candidates made the list. The top two, by a narrow margin were Frankenstein's monster and Freddy Krueger, but there was apparently quite a demographic gap between the Frank and Freddy fans. Somebody with statistical software has a lot more free time than I do.
In Deep Dew-Dew
FOOP DISCLOSURE: About.com pays me two cents every time somebody clicks a link from my site to one of theirs. But I'm still only going to link them in the blog when they come up with something good. This is good:
The latest Mis-Conception spreading among teens is that Mountain Dew is a male contraceptive.
If you really don't want to give me two cents, click to this article reprinted from the Wall Street Journal. Or just enjoy the caffeinated-carbonated humor of the Mountain Dew Anonymous site (protect your ears from the MIDI soundtrack).
MORE FOOP DISCLOSURE: The Foop's Famous Wendell is Married WithOUT Children. I do NOT drink Mountain Dew, but my wife DOES. You figure it out, I can't.
Bad News for "Law & Order" Fanatics (and I DON'T mean the TV show)
A new survey is challenging the assumptions that the "broken windows" approach to law enforcement, popularized by Nyork Mayer Rudy Giuliani, really works. Of course, the survey is based on "Broken Windows 95"... just wait until "Broken Windows 2000" comes out...
Speaking of Penicillin-Resistant Nostalgia, just try to read this item without ending up with some old TV theme song running through your head for the next week...
Because the composer of an awful lot of those songs, Frank DeVol, has died. The article fails to note that he wrote the music but NOT the lyrics to the "Brady Bunch Theme". You can blame Brady-creator Sherwood Schwartz for that. And he may be recognizable to many of you as playing the bandleader "Happy Kyne", on the Mary Hartman spun-off talk-show parody Fernwood Tonight. I also found him in the list of Famous West Virginians, right between Bob Denver and Joyce DeWitt (It just keeps getting more Nick at Nite all the time).
Could it be the U.S. Government is smarter than Encyclopedia Britannica?
Well, the Federal Court is preparing for the rush of internet interest when the judge in the Microsoft anti-trust case makes his findings: they've set up a website specially for publishing the findings with the Government Printing Office. For all the interest they expect, you'd think Bill Gates was having sex or something!
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