May 02, 2016

Forever unhip

Back in 2013, the New York Times had this to say about my neighborhood in the District of Columbia:

"We drove north on North Capitol Street, as if we were driving out of the District, to a shabby and decidedly unhip neighborhood called Brookland.”

Ouch.

But that was three years ago. Let's check in to see what our national newspaper of record thinks now. Here's how the New York Times described my neighborhood yesterday:

The couple were married April 24 at St. Francis Hall, adjacent to the Franciscan Monastery in the serene Brookland neighborhood of northeast Washington.

Ah, that's better. Unless, wait a minute. Can a neighborhood be both serene and shabby?

April 29, 2016

Drink beer. Get thin.

At this point, there's really no excuse for not being in shape.

According to scientists from Canada's McMaster University, 1 minute of strenuous exercise is equal — in terms of improving health and fitness — to 45 minutes of moderate exercise. That's amazing. Who doesn't have time to spare a single minute?

It gets even better.

Oregon State University researchers found that beer may help people lose weight. The study involved feeding mice a flavonoid called xanthohumol, which is found in hops and beer. And it works wonders with mice.

The only downside is that it would reportedly take 3,500 pints of beer to match the equivalent amount they were feeding the mice.

But still.

1 minute of exercise followed by 3,500 pints of beer. Who's up for that regimen?

March 30, 2016

European vacation

Avoid crowded places and pay attention to the gloves people wear.

That's the State Department's advice for Americans vacationing in Europe.

Does that sound super fun to you?

Here's the full transcript from Secretary of State John Kerry's conversation with John Dickerson on Face The Nation:

DICKERSON: You suggested that Americans traveling to Europe should continue with their plans, but -- quote -- "exercise vigilance." What does that mean? If I'm scheduling a vacation, how do I know to exercise vigilance? 
KERRY: Well, it's really a matter of common sense. But there are guidelines. And the State Department is ready to help anybody to understand exactly what that means. It means avoid a crowded place where you have no control over who may be there. Have a sense of vigilance to watch who is around you. If you see a guy walking into an airport with a black glove in one hand and nothing on the other, and there are two of them the same way, and they're pushing a big suitcase, maybe that tells you something. There are things you can be alert to. 
DICKERSON: That doesn't sound like much of a vacation. 
KERRY: Well, look, we live in a world today where, unfortunately, we have to be vigilant. I mean, look at what happened in San Bernardino. There are realities that there are dangers around. I don't want to scare anybody. I don't think you have to be. The odds of being hit by a terrorist are far less than the odds of an injury in the course of daily life, whether it's an accident in an automobile or a home or elsewhere. So, people do not have to live in fear. But it doesn't mean should you be oblivious to your surroundings. There are plenty of ways and places to have a good vacation. I would not tell any friend of mine or member my family don't travel to Europe or elsewhere, but I would say, do so with an awareness of what you're choosing to do, what activity you undertake and where you are.

February 29, 2016

Hairdryer for the kitchen

Marnie washes our sponges in the dishwasher. I've known about this for 10 years, but this week I learned that after she cleans the glass bottle that holds our olive oil she dries it with her hairdryer.

I readily concede that it's hard to dry a bottle by hand when the opening is narrow. But a hairdryer? Is this normal? Do other people do this?

February 17, 2016

Not a secret anymore



Campaigns secretly prep for brokered GOP convention, says secret article published on Politico's secret front page.

January 12, 2016

Make high school basketball great again

Donald Trump ripped the NFL earlier this week for not being tough enough, saying "It's become soft, like our country has become soft."

I wonder what he thinks about high school sports in Wisconsin.

As reported by Richardo Arguello of the Appleton Post-Crescent, new regulations in Wisconsin prohibit high school basketball fans from mockingly chanting "Airball!" when someone throws up a shot that doesn't hit the net. Similarly, fans can't chant "Scoreboard!" when their team is winning. Nor can they taunt opponents with Season’s over!” during tournament play when one team has been eliminated.

Clearly those are chants meant to taunt the opponent — but they're also factual statements.

Evidently, people can state only facts that are positive.

Making America great is going to be even easier than Trump originally thought, now that it's becoming illegal for anyone to say anything that isn't great.




December 21, 2015

ABC funny, TBS very funny



To tout its strong comedy lineup on Wednesdays, ABC uses the tagline "ABC Funny." There's even a voiceover where the announcer says: "ABC Funny" while an on-screen promo looks like this:



So there you go. ABC is funny. Not much you can do about that. I mean, really, what's better than funny. You really can't top funny.

But wait a minute. Here comes TBS with this promo:



... and we have a clear winner! Who would want funny when they could have very funny? No one. Well played, TBS.

November 04, 2015

NYT all access




For all I know, they've done this the whole time.

But today I realized that each print copy of the New York Times comes with a "day pass" allowing the reader to access the newspaper's content via digital channels.

Smart idea.