“Smokey, this is not ‘Nam. This is bowling. There are rules!”

August 4, 2010 at 4:46 pm | Posted in Internet Sleuthiness | 1 Comment
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Last year I talked about a trend in slang whereby the prefix un- is added to verbs and nouns where it was previously not allowed (prime example: “unfriend”). Typically, as in the case of the previous example, this occurs on verbs, but while re-watching “The Big Lebowski” today, I heard an awesome example of noun affixation:

“Come on, you’re being very un-dude.”

More than 10 years before the New York Times identified the Facebook-era phenomenon of un- proliferation, Walter was totally on top of his slang!



November 29, 2009 at 1:41 pm | Posted in Internet Sleuthiness | Leave a comment
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I basically adore Tyra Banks. I know some people hate her, and I can totally understand why. She can be completely cheesy and ridiculous and, crucially, self-important. She creates weight surrounding her projects and “social experiments;” a prime example is the massive build-up to the premiere of the current season of her talk show, when she went weave-less for the first time. In the grand scheme of things, who gives a shit if Tyra wears a weave or not? Or if she puts on a fat suit and experiences life as a heavy person?

I absolutely recognize this self-importance is probably the most off-putting aspect of the whole Tyra “brand” (as I suppose you could call her talk show, America’s Next Top Model, etc). And yet, in spite of this, I still really really like Tyra for two reasons. One is that even in her sometimes-flawed way (she isn’t always the most sensitive “reactor” to what her guests reveal), she does raise awareness about issues that are important and provocative and often not discussed, such as intersexuality, which was the subject of an episode last week. The second reason is that I just love the campiness of her schtick, especially on ANTM. She appears less self-aware of the camp she is creating than, say, Ru Paul on Ru Paul’s Drag Race, which is basically like ANTM if Tyra could say what she felt (“This is my show and I make the decisions, bitches!”), and if the she just owned and ran with the camp. ANTM is like camp on the precipice of self-awareness.

So all this is basically just a build-up to mention a couple of gems from the intersexuality episode that aired last Monday. First of all, did you know that 1 in 2000 people is born with red hair, and 1 in 2000 people is born intersexed? I just blew your mind, ginger! Tyra had this to say to an intersexed female with an enlarged clitoris who was expressing happiness that her parents chose not to perform surgery on her as a baby:

“I have a feeling that if your clitoris was gone you would not be as happy!”

Uh, what? Most likely, Tyra, yes.

In a totally awkward move, this very thoughtful and interesting episode ended with a fashion show of this season’s “hottest gender-bending styles!” (…crickets, crickets…) in which we learned an awesome neologism to describe male jewelery: bro-jangles.

I should leave you the same way Tyra left her guests that day: “Fierce and love, everybody!”

[ image from E! Online ]

For William Safire

September 28, 2009 at 7:47 pm | Posted in Internet Sleuthiness | Leave a comment
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Since 1979, the New York Times Sunday magazine has included William Safire‘s column “On Language,” in which the “oracle of language,” who passed away yesterday at age 79, discussed the meaning, etymology, and use of English words. Safire’s last column was published on September 13th, and the two columns since have been penned by guest writers. Ben Zimmer’s column on September 20th, entitled “The Age of Undoing,” discussed the recent trend of adding the prefix un- to verbs and nouns where it was not previously permitted (such as “unfavorite”). And I don’t know if Safire would be okay with such a crass reference, but that column was the first thing I thought of when I saw this entry on Texts From Last Night:

(270): I do regret it. But I can’t unfuck her

Oh no, my friend. With today’s language laxity, YES YOU CAN.

Emmys 2009: Four Thoughts

September 21, 2009 at 12:51 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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There was nary a duo more awesome all night.

Dream Team!

1. Kate Walsh said “Natch!” on the E! Emmy’s pre-show broadcast. Sweeping the nation, people. SWEEPING THE NATION.

2. I had no idea that Jon Hamm has been with Jennifer Westfeldt—the lead actress in the awesome and too-quickly-canceled TV show Notes from the Underbelly—since 1997. What an adorable couple!

3. I love NPH‘s joke in the opening song about how Joan Holloway is so beautiful “She could turn a gay man straight… Oh wait… There’s Jon Hamm!”

4. It really seems like the Miniseries/Movies category is Where Old Actors Go To Die. Nearly every single nominee is over the age of 65! (With the exception of Drew Barrymore, that is.)

[ image from E! Online ]

Phrase of the Day

September 8, 2009 at 8:01 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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“pornado” = what you get caught in when you click on a porn pop-up online, and then get inundated with a flurry of porn-related pop-ups clouding your screen

– Heard on: “Bones,” episode “The Girl in the Gator,” TNT

Phrase of the Day

August 17, 2009 at 9:09 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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“to crawfish out of something” = to back out of it, metaphorically (or literally?) speaking, as in, “I’m not so sure about this meeting, I’m going to try to crawfish out of it.”

– heard on What Not To Wear, TLC, 11-12 am

“My robot was like, a million times better.”

February 1, 2009 at 8:41 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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I am a HUGE fan of “30 Rock.” In my not-so-humble opinion, it is one of the best (if not the best) shows on television at this moment. A group of friends and I meet up every Thursday night to watch the combo platter of “The Office” and “30 Rock,” and inevitably end up quoting our favorite parts back to each other. Most of these references are ephemeral (read: don’t last more than the night), but there was one that was so good, so clever, that it became, hands down, our favorite seven seconds ever to be shown on network television.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you: “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah.”

In the most recent episode, however, a quick reference threatened to dethrone the king, for both the phrase (and, of course, its accompanying gesture) have entered our collective vocabulary with a vengeance: Robot Penis.

Liz: (holding a broken Lego train) Sorry, I broke it when I was pretending it was my penis. ROBOT PENIS.

I can’t find a video clip of this moment online, but if catch it soon enough, Hulu might still have the episode, entitled “Retreat to Move Forward,” available online.

In the meantime, check out this clip from “How I Met Your Mother” for more robot goodness. Or, just enjoy this gif! (Thanks to Jarrett for finding it!)

Robot penis: the possibilities are endless!

[ image from Photobucket ]

Fetus in Fetu FTW

February 1, 2009 at 10:03 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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(originally written December 4, 5:56 pm)

This the part where I apologize to my two readers for neglecting this thing for so long—though I wouldn’t be surprised if I’ve lost all readership in this long absence.

The election has long come and gone, and there’s nothing much more to be said about it now that hasn’t already been said, except THANK HEAVENS! More exciting than the speculation and chatter about potential appointees to the new cabinet? (And don’t even get me started about the whole dog thing. Yech.) The speculation about what the Obama ladies are going to wear to the inauguration! Or maybe that’s just me.

On a totally unrelated note, I wanted to talk about one of my favorite—and, in my boyfriend’s opinion, more bizarre—fascinations: fetus in fetu. Really, I think it’s the fun alliterative nature of the name that has caused this particular condition to catch my fancy, and it’s truly only a sample entry in the general category of bodily oddities that I love to read about (see: Millie-Christine McKoy, the possible/probable focus of my upcoming thesis). Nevertheless, I was glad to discover that I’m not the only one with such fascinations:

Fetus in Fetu

Thanks, Jezebel commenters, for always making me feel like I’m part of something bigger than myself.

(This is totally unrelated, but this comment also made me laugh, mostly because of the reference to “raptor smart.” Is this a saying I’m unfamiliar with? If so, it has just officially joined my vocabulary. Welcome!)


[ images from Jezebel ]

When two become one…

February 1, 2009 at 9:49 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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(originally written October 2, 9:19 pm)

It’s either the Apocalypse, or the Best Day Ever. Project Runway and presidential politics converge in a single sentence that explains just why I love Jezebel so much: “Joe Biden is the new Suede!”


February 1, 2009 at 9:44 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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(originally written September 30, 2:52 pm)

LolitaOn Sunday, the Times had an article about a Japanese subculture that’s made its way to the US, specifically to New York, it seems, called Lolita. Jezebel posted about the article yesterday, and today, one of the Lolitas interviewed and photographed for the article (Ellie, seen at left) responded to the Jezebel post, and the subsequent comments, many of which were rude, mean, or just plain misguided. I was incredibly impressed with how thoughtful and articulate her response was, and how analytically she had parsed out Lolita fashion and culture. The idea that Lolita fashion was feminist because it visibly celebrates womanhood and femaleness by the standards women choose for themselves—rather than those imposed on them by men, for example—had never really occurred to me, but I’m totally down with her reasoning. Arguably the best line in Ellie’s response: “No one is excluded on the basis of race or size or even gender (there are boys who dress in lolita: ‘brolitas’).” LOLZ.

[ image from the New York Times ]

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