Pop Culture & Current Events

Katy Perry Plays Rapper in N*ggas In Paris

The thought of Katy Perry singing in general doesn’t exactly inspire confidence in me – she has about a 6 note range, requires all-too-obvious auto-tuning, and in live performances is a poster child for pre-recorded tracks. As for her rhythm … Well, she really can’t dance and certainly can’t sing and dance simultaneously. So again, not a lot of confidence there. Let us just say she is at her best walking around the stage singing along with a pre-recorded track…


The Doors Release New Video for L.A. Woman 40th Anniversary

No, you didn’t misread … the Doors, whose lead singer died more than 40 years ago, have released a new music video. No, it isn’t a reforming of the band with some American Idol alum or anything like that. According to the info for the video: Professional skateboarders Kenny Anderson, Alex Olson, and Braydon Szafranski take viewers on a “Doors-centric” skateboarding tour of Los Angeles. If you head to their Facebook page you get this description: The Doors are thrilled…


Today Marks the 30th Anniversary of the Death of Randy Rhoads

There are so many tales of artists lost too young, but way too many of them are more cautionary tales of self-destruction and failing to heed the constant pleas and attempts of others to save them – such as almost the entire  ’27 club’. Those are tragic in their own right, but there are also losses of artists through disease or accidents. I always think of the young loss of Scott LaFaro in 1961, or the infamous ‘Day the Music…


Do Movies Like Dr. Seuss’ ‘The Lorax’ and ‘Wall-E’ Make a Difference?

My family went to see The Lorax in 3D yesterday. It took a little bit of convincing for Kev’s almost-13-year-old to get into the spirit of seeing a “kid’s cartoon”, as she was much more interested in seeing Eddie Murphy’s 1000 Words [not happening], but the 9-year-old was eager enough. Mentioning that the movie was done by the creators of Despicable Me (a DVD go-to favorite of theirs) got everyone in a good mood, and we were off! Many of you will remember the Dr….


How Real People Will Deal With Windows 8

Have you tried out the Windows 8 ‘Consumer Preview’? I skipped it as I have enough other stuff going on, but have heard generally good things from the tech press and other tech-centric friends. And perhaps that is the issue – everyone I know who has played with the so-called ‘consumer release’ isn’t really a consumer. The results of having people who are too skilled evaluate a product are that your end result is designed for those people. That is…


Is That a Cthulhu on Your Face?

This knit hat bears the uncanny likeness to one who should need no introduction, to H. P. Lovecraft fans, at least: Cthulhu. His very existence may be outside our realm of understanding, but this scary cross of octopus, dragon and  human caricature is sure to bring second looks wherever he is seen. Has Cthulhu awoken and decided that it’s time to rule the Earth again? If so, then we mere mortals had better be very, very afraid … “la, ia, Cthulhu fhtagn!” A comfortable, soft…



Nick Brignola Fans Prove that the Internet Makes the World Smaller

Nearly 8 years ago I posted the following as part of a forum thread entitled ‘What concerts have you seen?’: – Nick Brignola (this one is a club show, but I enjoyed getting to see this jazz giant of the baritone sax playing ‘at home’ many Thursday nights at the Italia restaurant in Troy NY) Nick Brignola is no stranger to fans of the music generally called ‘hard bop’, straight-ahead jazz form that took the core of bebop and brought…


The End of a 244-Year Era As Encyclopedia Britannica Goes Out of Print!

For anyone under the age of 30, the concept of needing a set of encyclopedias in your home is at best archaic. I remember consulting the books as a regular part of doing homework in social studies and geography classes in particular, but also to feed curiosity for dinosaurs, biology, space, physics and more. Well, Britannica has just announced that they will not be producing a 2012 edition and that the 2010 version will be their last print volume. Britannica…


Get Your Geek On with the Unicorn City Trailer!

Every now and then you come upon a movie trailer that really gets at your inner geek … well, at MY inner geek anyway! This is one of those moments. I saw a blog post by Jay at Rampant Games about Unicorn City, and simply HAD to check it out!


Chilling New Home Video of the Challenger Disaster

I still remember sitting in the formal living room of my fraternity house watching the Challenger launch back in 1986 (hard to believe it has been 26 years now). If I had the chance to go to watch it live, I would have done it in a heartbeat – my family was vacationing in Florida a few years back, and the schedule was supposed to have us there for a launch, but it was pushed back. We still got to…


Really Cool Time Lapse Pregnancy Video Shows 9 Months in Under 2 Minutes!

I am really happy that I made my wife let me snap a couple of shots of her while pregnant with both of our kids. A couple of weeks ago when our ‘baby’ turned 14 we were flipping through and it was a sort of time lapse as we looked at my wife as she progressed and then the baby and our son as he grew. But this cool video shows the entire pregnancy from start to finish, one week…


The Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra Takes You Inside Their Instruments

While the outside of a musical instrument is a thing of beauty, what of the inside? It is responsible for the entirety of the structure and much of the sound – and yet all we ever see are little bits through the sound holes. Now the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra has done a series of photos looking inside the instruments in high resolution glory! The instrument at the top is a guitar, and here is a pipe organ: Source: BuzzFeed


Cool Mashup of The Smiths and Super Mario Bros

I am a sucker for cool and creative mashups, so here is another one that I saw at Neatorama. This is a remake of the classic Smiths song ‘This Charming Man’ – from the original ‘The Smiths‘ or the wonderful ‘Complete‘ from last year … but done in the style of Super Mario Bros!


Real Men Don’t Wear Pink; They Can’t, Because It Doesn’t Exist!

The color pink, technically called Magenta, is in theory a blend of Red and Violet. That is wonderful for mixing paints … but in terms of the electromagnetic spectrum it makes no sense. Why is that? Because colors are based on a continuum, that means that in order for a color to exist it needs to follow some progression of wavelength shortening from red to violet. Color is visible to us based on the wavelength of light, and aside from…



Which Muppet Would Survive in the Arena?

It seems like everyone in my social circle, from Gear Diary to Facebook to coworkers, are anxiously awaiting The Hunger Games. Know who else is excited for them? Surprisingly, The Muppets!


Check Out This Awesome Adele / Daft Punk Mashup!

It is amazing what a skilled DJ can do in terms of remixing two songs and coming out with something that is truly transformative. That is what happens when DJ Carlos Serrano mixed Daft Punk’s “Something About Us” with Adele’s “Set Fire to the Rain.” Check it out below, and hit up his web page for more great tracks!


Amber Tamblyn Punks Tyrese Gibson and Reminds Us to Know Who We Are Emailing!

Last Friday as I was working at my desk I got a message over Microsoft Lync asking me to join in a conference call. That happens on occasion, but when I opened Lync to reply, I realized I didn’t know a single person mentioned. My name isn’t exactly unique particularly with the way our company assigns email addresses, so I replied simply with my name, organization and the project I am on … and within a few seconds he said…


Scott Jordan Appears on Shark Tank, but Who Was the Shark? And Who Was the Bait?

If the name Scott Jordan sounds familiar, it’s probably because you’ve seen it in the context of his clothing line, Scottevest. We’ve reviewed many of their products here, and I will say I personally use my SeV gear quite often. However, after seeing Scott on ABC’s “Shark Tank” and witnessing his attitude on the show, I can’t help but wonder how he runs his business! In case you missed it last night, here’s a shot from Scott’s segment. (The episode…


THIS is Why Ben Jerry’s ‘Taste the Lin-Sanity’ Apology is Correct

Recently the Ben & Jerrys Ice Cream shop in Harvard Square created a flavor called “Taste the Lin-sanity” … and ended up quickly pulling the product and apologizing. This follows the two separate same-night incidents from ESPN where in writing and on television hosts used the phrase ‘chink in the armor’.