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The Public Blogging of Pomosexuality, Homotextuality, Homophobiaphilia, and Drear Theory (aka Career Theory) [aka Gay4Pay]. We also read the Corner and OpJournal so the right buttock will be punished as well. All comments subject to publication. Or dismissal. Or Both.


Your Disciplinarians: Glenda Benda (Philapa), Amber Waves (Kansaster), Polly Morpheus (Dreamsville), Tess Tosterone (D'Urbervilles)



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Agenda Bender
Saturday, October 25, 2003  

Karen Black, Crisis Aviatrix

The campest moment in the campest film of the last 30 years: Helen Reddy, as the flying/singing nun, picks up Linda Blair's airborne-deathbed guitar (Linda's expiring because her kidneys failed under the stress of the 5 gallons of syrup she slogged down just before the flight), then trills three verses of I'm-ok-you're-ok uplift to the dying rock-candy muppet, while Karen Black pauses from her stewardessing/soon-to-be-piloting duties, in wandering-eye rapture, and takes in the magic.

It doesn't hurt that Gloria Swanson is dictating Volume 6 of her memoirs in the first class section during this (and every other) scene of Airport 1975.

I always though Dana Andrews deserved a special Academy Award for at least trying to bring that plane down.

Definitely a funnier movie than Airplane!

6:25 PM

Thursday, October 23, 2003

Guardian LA Reporter Mistakes Local Activist For 'The Poor', Greeted With Canned Comments By The Same: Probable Banner Themes Bandied About, End Product No Doubt Pithier

Gehry's LA Concert Hall 'Jewel' Greeted With Anger From The Poor

4:49 PM


Weather Forecast: New Lows

Nothing like imputations and adumbrations of teenage sexuality to set the news wires humming. And us along with them.

They're renaming a car in Canada because its proposed name, the LaCrosse, is kid slang for masturbation. It's the new version of the now discontinued Buick Regal. The Buick Bishop had earlier been rejected as a suitable substitution for Regal. Religious controversies, it seems. Which is a shame because I had pre-ordered a shiny new purple one. A convertible. They're very rare in the States.

What do they call the sport of lacrosse in old Montréal? Ball, stick and basket? Maybe they just keep the name and let the teens snicker on the sidelines. Or are the kids smart enough to pull off a meta prank. Are they jerking everyone around by pretending lacrosse has a teenage wasteland meaning it really doesn't? A masterstroke, if they are.

President Bush had no comment on the matter.

Canadian Prime Minister Jacques Hoffer was equally quiet in his room. Perhaps even overly quiet.

(Leftover froglo puns: Lacrosse l'infame and something along the lines of J'acrosse!. Please note and disregard. Merci beaubridges.)

Reuters had a winking orgasm with our second story, but then they are masters of this sort of double entendre, as their war coverage has shown us time and again:

Stiff discipline for boys' Viagra prank

LONDON (Reuters) - Six schoolboys have been rushed to hospital after taking the erection-enhancing drug Viagra at lunchtime for a dare, the school says.

Forest School in Winnersh, southern England said paramedics were called after a fellow student told teachers about the 13-year-olds' prank.

"It is believed that a pupil brought the tablets in from home into the all-boys school and shared them with five friends," the local education authority said in a statement.

The Sun newspaper quoted a source at the school as saying: "By the time the afternoon lessons began, there was no hiding what they had done."

Paramedics took the six squirming boys to the nearby Royal Berkshire Hospital, where they were monitored until the effects wore off.

"The school has a strict no drugs policy and a pupil will be temporarily excluded for actions which placed other pupils at risk," the education authority added.

Come, come, don't be so hard on the lads. The sad thing is there was a seventh student involved, but he was never found out. Hiding it wasn't a problem for him, it seems. Yes, a sad case.

I don't know why they sent the squirmers to the hospital for monitoring. I think a bracing afternoon of lacrosse would have been just the thing for their condition.

Team sport, your mates beside you breathless and sweating, the open air and autumn smells, the soul-stirring thwack of sticks and balls, clear their heads in no time, righto.

The playing fields of Eton and whatnot.

Bloody good show.

4:09 PM

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Liza With a $

The world is still reeling from the news that David Gest now sees Liza Minnelli as a sequined and highly tippable cash cow.

The world should get even. As this story reminds us:

Gest, an event and concert promoter, produced [Michael] Jackson's 30th Anniversary tribute concert.

Whatever insults and neurological damage Gest might have suffered are nothing compared to those he inflicted on the rest of us. The world should check into a Honolulu rehab, send Gest the bill, and then sue for damages.

2:06 PM


His Anonymous Publicist

I hope Elliot Smith wasn't unbelievably great because he's dead, and while I know the name I don't know the music. I must have heard some of his stuff because it was featured in Good Will Hunting, that wretched movie I made myself watch once. This line from the AP story about his apparent suicide is interesting:

His New York-based publicist, who spoke on condition of anonymity, also confirmed his death.

A curious sort of anonymity, that.

But the publicist was probably happy with this demi-revelation of his identity, at least his (?) name wasn't attached to a story of stabbed in the heart self-murder. Don't need the clients (and potential clients) seeing that.

1:55 PM

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Not Exactly Zero

Steve Sailer interviewed Charles Murray about Murray's new book, a social scientific ranking and explication of Human Achievement. I think my scientific movie review below must be even more pathbreaking than I could have dreamed (and I dreamed great things for it) given what Murray says here to Sailer (scroll down the yellow blog). If this is science (social or otherwise), I must be a popcorn Galileo.

Sailer: Can you truly quantify objectively which artists and scientists were the most eminent?

Murray: Sure. It's one of the most well-developed quantitative measures in the social sciences. (The measurement of intelligence is one of its few competitors, incidentally.) My indices have a statistical reliability that is phenomenal for the social sciences. There's also a very high "face validity"-- in other words, the rankings broadly correspond to common-sense expectations.

Thoroughly calibrated measurements of eminence, and common sense expectations of eminence, will have a tendency to correspond since they are the same thing. The eminent are eminent to those who know who they are, and those who know, know because the indicators of eminence are transmitted through the culture they share. It is only possible to quantify estimations of eminence among those who estimate the eminence being quantified. The results will mirror the common sense because the sense is only common to those with enough knowledge to have an opinion. Oxford dons have no common-sense estimate of stock car racing greatness, though some among them have hard of Jeff Gordon. 5 year olds have no common sense estimate of scientific greatness though they have heard Einstein references in Jimmy Neutron cartoons.

The more widely known eminences have name check recognition in the popular culture. The less eminent are famous in myriad niche cultures. Canons are built from consensus over time. People who know about such things, know about such things. Statistical reliability arising from statistifying reliability is phenomenal, but only in the way everything is. It matters only in the way everything does. It is, in technical terms, really something.

[Murray]...In Western music, Mozart and Beethoven were in a dead heat, with Bach third. A rather vocal minority is upset about Bach not being on top. I'm not. I love Bach, but it's awfully hard to listen to Beethoven's later symphonies and string quartets and figure out how anybody could possibly be ranked above him.

Dead heat. That's about right. (It would have been a better title for the book, too--has a little of those Bell Curve poetics.) But Murray doesn't even fire up the right chestnut. He gets one of the mustiest upper-mid-cult, 3/4 brow solemnities wrong. It's the late quartets that are supposed to trump everything else, not Beethoven's later symphonies and string quartets. Which reminds me of one of the funnier things I ever heard. Some culture-con on C-span's Booknotes told the affable, looking-pretty-good-for-his-age, baldish dude who benevolently rules C-span that his cultural recreation of an evening consisted of curling up with the Federalist Papers while Haydn sawed away on the hi-fi. Or maybe it was Burke and Handel. Death on the installment plan, in either case. Or the air conditioned nightmare.

[Sailer] You found that per capita levels of accomplishment tended to decline from 1850 to 1950. Would you care to speculate on post-1950 trends?

[Murray] I think that the number of novels, songs, and paintings done since 1950 that anyone will still care about 200 years from now is somewhere in the vicinity of zero. Not exactly zero, but close. I find a good way to make this point is to ask anyone who disagrees with me to name a work that will survive -- and then ask, "Seriously?" Very few works indeed can defend themselves against the "Seriously?" question.

Chas should know from the vicinity of zero. Is it post 1950's art's fault that Murray only encounters fat-free milquetoasts who dissolve even further in the face of the word "seriously"? I remember another Booknotes (hey, it used to be my weightlifting infotainment) when Murray was the guest. At some point he mentioned, in awe and supplication, that his wife was the only person he knew who read Henry James for the enjoyment. I thought at the time it was a bizarre bit of homefront boosterism. I can easily imagine knowing no people who read Henry James for any reason (you wouldn't want to fight a war against that particular army), but if you are traveling in circles where anyone is reading H.J. for enjoyment, almost certainly several people are, or have, or will, whether you know it or not. It's not surprising that your wife would be the only one you knew it to be true of with certainty. Your indices there would have a rather phenomenal reliability. I think we have here a glimpse of Murray's scientific method and the most prominent device in his scientific toolbox: A shoulder mounted microscope with a mirror stuck in the crosshairs. What a big eye you have, Grand Phenomena.

I have read, and very much enjoyed, two books by Murray, In Pursuit of Happiness... and Apollo, the book he wrote on the space program. I've also read several shorter pieces by him and have seen him speak and in interviews. He seems intellectually courageous in some ways, but intellectually crabbed in several more. Which is maybe how that usually works. Mostly, though, he gives me the creeps.

8:02 PM

Monday, October 20, 2003

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Cutters, Matches, Clay and Bleach

Heatwole is perfect, too. Rowlings must be kicking herself.

8:36 PM


World Series Back On: "Insane" Commissioner Replaced

Gregg Easterbrook isn't the only one who wishes he had a second shot at last week. I have been forced out as baseball commissioner. Some felt my decision to cancel the Series, just because Manny Ramirez wouldn't be playing in it, was rash. Unprofessional. Almost Roman Catholic in its autocratic eroticism. That I had breached the taxpayer-financed stadium wall between Church and Sport by so recklessly interjecting my own pagan sexual faith into what should have been a purely chaste, pagan decision.


But as it turns out, I really was wrong. While this picture is more sweet than hot, it is more hot than not.

Go Marlins.

The Marlin is a rather gay fish. Your typical Marlin is a wall-eyed cruiser with an easy grin. As comfortable and at home in a beachside bar as in the actual ocean.

(Via, get this, K-Lo-Can-You-Go, at the Corner.)

1:41 PM


The Critic as Scientist

The new Clint Eastwood directed flick (I so wanted to write helmser, but I chickened out) , Mystic River, came in 3rd for weekend receipts, which was impressive since it only opened on 1500 screens. The ads for it are plastered with ecstatic blurbs. I have some scientific doubts that the movie deserves the praise, though:

1. I saw Midnight in the Garden of Good And Evil.

2. Kevin Bacon, a dead spot on any movie screen, is in the movie.

3. I saw a few minutes of Unforgiven.

4. I saw half of The Eiger Sanction.

5. I have a vague memory of the trailer (and that's always the best thing about any movie) for Play Misty For Me. (Pay Misty For Me would have been such a better title. And movie.)

I would watch all of The Eiger Sanction given the chance, and given something really engaging to do at the same time. It is entertaining on several levels. Jack Cassidy is the fruitiest bad guy, the evilest sissy, in the history of fruity bad guy/evil sissy cinema. I stopped watching after he died (I had a feeling he didn't really die, and would reappear in the second half, but I was not certain of this so I didn't want to risk another hour). George Kennedy is featured in this mountain climbing thriller as the gruff old man of the mountains, you have to see this guy who doesn't look capable of a downhill hike to an alpine donut shop climb a 300 foot sheer rock face. He and Clint have a beer at the top. The phoniest moment of beer-solidarity-populism in the history of fruity bad guy/evil sissy cinema. I have a further feeling that George Kennedy turns out to be the real bad guy in the flick, and I would like to verify that.

Also on display in The Eiger Sanction is Eastwood's unfailingly odd taste in women. I think there are several reasons Clint loves to feature unglamorous women in his movies. He likes to hire actresses who are:

1. His current girlfriend

2. His daughter

3. Less attractive than him in close-up.

4. Less attractive than him in remembered close-up when he is directing, but not appearing in, the movie.

Or possibly he just really digs plain to strange looking chix.

11:50 AM