In the summer of 1999 I launched this site as a place to post my point of view on such wide-ranging topics as golf, stocks, and booze. Months passed and people slowly started paying attention to the content here, and the lone daily reader (thanks, mom!) turned into ten or so. It was an exhilarating, rewarding experience that I will never forget.
Now, almost two years into writing a daily commentary and occasionally publishing an article, I want to do other things. I want to spend more time making short films, playing golf, and reading books. But what I really want to do is make computers, and specifically the Web, a much smaller part of my life.
Sure, a new article or web movie might be added every once in a great while, but the weblog that 315 pixel-wide space with the too-small type is off the air.
Thanks for reading.
And that's the way it is, Monday, May 21, 2001.
It's a sure sign of the apocalypse when...
NBC gives Emeril Lagasse his own primetime show
an American millionaire chooses Russia to travel to space.
-- atul http://asamee.com
FuckedCompany is the most memorable Dot Com.
-- Bryan Eisenberg www.futurenowinc.com
the Chicago Cubs are above .500
-- White Sox fan
Someone pays $5 million for a porcelain sculpture of Michael Jackson and Bubbles.
-- Tom Karlo http://karlo.org/
Jesus comes to your door, specifically telling you that's it's the apocalypse and it's time for you to go to Hell now.
Jesse Venture has a conversation with the Dalai Lama
Fieldy records a solo album.
-- Ian www.blawg.com
Britney Spears launches a PlayStation game.
-- Ian www.blawg.com
Britney Spears makes her film debut.
-- Ian www.blawg.com
I get laid
Microsoft consolidates their OS product lines.
-- tholt www.tholt.com
Amazon becomes profitable
-- RichS. http://gusterzone.pair.com/home/
Ellen DeGeneres is allowed back on television
The Minnesota Twins are the best team in baseball
The best rapper is white, the best golfer is black
-- Adam C. (and several others)
people need mobile porn.
People like Kathy Lee Gifford have record deals
-- Christina L.
Your mom is your bartender.
Paul Hogan stars in another Crocodile Dundee movie.
-- David Fedosiewich
A monkey man terrorizes India
-- Shaun www.fidius.org/
W figures out how to work that damned nuke key
-- Ross Hansen
Fred Durst directs a feature film
-- Tim Thompson http://timthompson.com/journal
George W. Bush is the leader of the free world.
-- jorge www.xero79.com
Chloe Sevingy is described as having "star style"
a French artist creates a mutant rabbit
-- Steven Garrity www.actsofvolition.com
you see your dear old dad on www.badbears.com
a merely mediocre action film spawns a much worse sequel that tops the box office charts.
-- Ian www.blawg.com
Marilyn Manson and Eminem recording a song together
-- michele http://afireinside.8m.com
Another day, another day of relying on others for content.
Mike Haney (this site's angry young music critic) is back from a visit to Scotland (the home of golf), where, he says, "the women have the most consistently large breasts of any culture I've ever seen. It was eerie, yet wonderful." Anyhow, Mike reflects on writer's block and the potential genius of Fred Durst.
Wrongwaygoback.com's Neale Talbot spins 'em this week with The Great Australian Pub Crawl. "Drag out the XXXX, whack another prawn on the barbie, find yer Winnie Blues and turn the speakers up real loud." I have no idea what the hell any of that means, but have a listen anyhow.
Neale tries his hand at horoscopes in a new issue of his e-zine:
Libra Sep 23-Oct 22
You will soon be showered with money. Followed by a safe.
It's a sure sign of the apocalypse when Brad Pitt launches a clothing line.
More Caddyshack: A tasteful tribute to Lacey Underalls, er, Cindy Morgan.
Business Week has the inside story behind Yahoo's meltdown. Turns out they probably should've bought Disney in early 2000, as was suggested.
Last week Jesse Ventura asked the Dalai Lama if he'd ever seen Caddyshack. You know, cuz greenskeeper Carl Spackler (Bill Murray) caddied for him. For the most in-depth dirt on Governor Ventura check out cursor.org's superb Venturawatch.
Speaking of Caddyshack, Lacey Underalls' (Cindy Morgan) career never really got going. Sheesh.
More Caddyshack: The original trailer.
Tired: This weblog.
Wired: Suck List 2001
Get your XFL collectibles while supplies last. Related link: Nelson Muntz's commentary on the XFL's demise.
The Unofficial Bra Size Chart. Molly Ringwald a 38-C? Who knew?
Other celeb bra sizes, courtesy of reader Brian Carter:
In early morn mist
Ma searches Circle K for
Moon Pies and Red Man
Q: What's the difference between God and the Atari 2600 Golf Guy?
A: God doesn't think He's Tiger Woods.
Anthony Ramos has created a parody of that famous Nike ad, featuring, of course, Atari 2600 Golf Guy. Check this out. It's good. And make sure the sound is on. (QuickTime movie. 351K.)
For a hearty laugh poke around Suck List 2001 for a bit. Regarding the Pontiac Aztek, tholt says "It looks like an SUV humped a toaster."
I think FC user "nukethealley" speaks for millions of people who have had to deal with Real Networks' virusware (Warning! If you are offended by words like "fucking" or "cocksuckers" you should stop reading now.):
If anyone from Real reads this let me just say to you... I HATE YOUR FUCKING GUTS! YOUR PRODUCT SUCKS - AND YOU SUCK! DIE YOU FUCKING COCKSUCKERS! DIE! I LIVE FOR THE DAY REAL FINALLY GOES OUT OF BUSINESS!!!
Nukethealley felt a lot better after venting. I could just tell. Feel free to vent yourself on the new, interactive Suck List 2001. If you prefer to kick it old school, then visit Suck List Classic.
Somehow the "How to Play Amen Corner at Augusta National" 5k site made it into the finals. Thanks judges! I hope you bought something nice with your cash payoff. I can't decide which I like better, the 5k chess game or the 5k porn site.
You bought an Excursion, Navigator, or Suburban, and still feel inadequate? You should. Those are for pussies. Real dudes take their kids to soccer games in the new Ford F-650 Super Crewzer.
Culture jamming in the mainstream. "I'm Changing the Climate" bumper stickers available here.
Apologies for linking to something as obvious as The Onion, but I can't resist citing prima facie evidence that 13 years into it, they are at the very top of their game. Heh. God diagnosed with bipolar disorder. That's priceless.
Listen to the state of Georgia execute retarded guy Ivon Ray Stanley, IQ 62.
New show this week: Pop Goes the Fuzz Rock, DJd by David Wertheimer. It's a little loud for an old coot like me, but probably perfect for all the kids out there. In two weeks wrongwaygoback.com's Neale Talbot plays DJ, so we'll get to hear what music in Australia sounds like.
A good companion to last night's PBS rebroadcast
"The Merchants of Cool" is Adbusters editor Kalle Lasn's Culture Jam: The Uncooling of America.
Congratulations to Rich Sutter, who was the 8th emailer of a link to yesterday's news.com piece "Criticism of Flash grows with its popularity." Stay on the line and our lovely producer will send you a dack.com/music t-shirt.
Here at dack.com world headquarters, we've been a leader in publishing
incendiary, grossly oversimplified criticisms of Flash for some time now. Nuts to all you Johnny-come-latelys!
If you're like me and missed Frontline's "The Merchants of Cool" the first time around, it's being rebroadcast tonight on PBS. Check local listings.
Joe Quennan tells it like it is in the May GQ, deploring the rise of the middle-class tattoo:
"As tattoo shops surfaced in suburban malls around the country, and as the term body art began to geyser into the lexicon of the hoi polloi, it became apparent that tattoos were slowly losing their power to daunt, shock or amaze. But more important, they were rapidly being stripped of their traditional connotations as emblems of blue-collar lunacy, alcohol abuse and temporary insanity. More and more, they were becoming the province of middle-class wannabes, commuters and show-offs."
Heard last night on Marketplace: gas is expected to hit $3/gallon later this summer in a few parts of the country, and may hit $5/gallon in southern California, where impending power outages will knock a refinery or two offline. If you're fool enough to own an Excursion, $3 gas will cost you $132 to fill 'er up. Ha!
This past weekend a bunch of the neighborhood kids set up a lemonade stand. When I stopped by to support these budding capitalists, some of the parents had a problem with my new "Let the fucking begin." t-shirt. Perhaps I (heart) Mullets or Viva La Mullet tees would be more appropriate.
When Pud posts, people click. Last Friday's link to the BSG from FC increased interactive eyeballs by 10,000 ... or would that be 20,000? Either way, it's a shame they aren't being monetized.
Hideo Nomo did not give up a hit in the 7th last night. That's an error, dammit.
There are nearly as many dot-com layoff headlines as there are dot-com layoffs.
Dot-com job cuts hit record in April Computerworld
Dot-com layoffs surge in April CNet
Report: Dot.com layoffs surge in April InfoWorld
Dot-com layoffs doubled in April MSNBC
Report: Dot.com Layoffs Surge in April ZDNet
Due to rage-inducing technical difficulties, a new broadcast of The Show isn't available this week. Until next week, drink your martinis to The Retro Cocktail Hour.
Patiently awaiting the arrival of George Carlin's latest book Napalm & Silly Putty, which takes a swipe at baby boomers' overindulgence and obsession with their kids. Excerpt: "Your children are overrated and overvalued, and you've turned them into little cult objects."
Related Note #1: The same can be said of many Generation X parents.
Related Note #2: Carlin calls golf a "meaningless, mindless, arrogant game." I've often wondered why I enjoy it so much ...
Ordered my summer wardrobe in 2 minutes at The Onion's online store:
1 XL "I enjoy drinking beer."
1 XL "Your favorite band sucks."
1 XL "Let the fucking begin."
Too bad they don't sell shorts.
My name is Dack, and I have a magazine fetish.
What in the hell is Chloë Sevigny doing on the cover of Harper's Bazaar? Someone please tell me why she doesn't suck.
This week's Rolling Stone excerpts from The Dirt, a Motley Crue autobiography. Lead singer Vince Neil:
"Every night after we played the Whisky (LA venue Whisky a Go-Go), half the crowd would come back to our house and drink and do blow, smack, Percodan, Quaaludes and whatever else we could get for free."
Reminds me of a monologue from Eric Bogosian's hilarious movie Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll in which he recalls life as a rock star:
"I used to get up every morning, before I even brushed my teeth, I would smoke a joint. While I was smoking a joint, I'd pop a beer. While I was sipping the beer, I'd cook up a spoon of cocaine, heroin -- whatever was lying around. Shoot it right into my arm, get completely wasted ... Flip on the telly, get high some more ... maybe order up some lunch ... have some girls over ... get high with them ... fool around with the girls ... get high some more.
Like everyone else, Eric Bogosian's got his own site, where he offers advice on what you need to know to make it in Hollywood:
I did that every single day for five years.
It was horrible ... it was horrible ... I mean, it was wonderful too, in its own way."
1. Since most movies in Hollywood are unmemorable or just plain suck, and since half the Hollywood budget is in marketing movies, Hollywood is actually in the business of selling shitty movies.
Some delicious satire is at TigerWoodsIsGod.com. Check out some of the similarities between Jesus and Tiger. Spooky!
Jesus: Probably had dark skin.
Tiger: Has dark skin.
Jesus: Liked alliteration in his women (Mary Magdalene).
Tiger: Likes alliteration in his women (Joanna JaGODa).
Jesus: Came after someone else whom everyone at the time thought was the closest thing to God they would ever see (Moses).
Tiger: Came after someone else whom everyone at the time thought was the closest thing to God they would ever see (Nicklaus).
Jesus: Jesus, five letters.
Tiger: Tiger, five letters.
Jesus: Jesus Christ, two syllables, one syllable.
Tiger: Tiger Woods, two syllables, one syllable.
Jesus: Liked to fish, wasn't a pro.
Tiger: Likes to fish, isn't a pro.
Jesus: Media darling.
Tiger: Media darling.
Jesus: Never said he was God, never said he wasn't.
Tiger: Has never said he is God, never said he isn't.
I'm so pumped for The Big Game at the End. Can XFL Player of the Year Tommy Maddox take the Xtreme all the way? Or will it be Demons' quarterback Mike Peplowski, er Pavlovski, er, um, Pawlawski, or whatever the hell his name is, who leads his team to the $1 million jackpot? Oh, the drama!
As interstitials (a fancy word for pop-up ads) become ubiquitous, Publish asks a good question: "Are improving clickthrough rates and a higher selling price worth the annoyance that pop-up ads cause site visitors?" I'm a little surprised the clickthroughs on pop-ups are higher than plain old banners. In some of the usability testing I've been involved with, even novice web users know enough to close the offending new window, almost always before the ad even loads.
I'm going to wallpaper my cube with some of these posters from IBM's excellent Ease of Use site. A favorite: "Simple Good. Complex Bad."
Wow. The Mitsubishi T250 is now just $49.99.
A brilliant parody of women's magazines & web sites is at Happy Woman Magazine. How do you find a man? Track Him, Trick Him, Trap Him. The site reminds me of an old-time Onion parody of Cosmopolitan (not online, dammit). Headline: "Are You Fat? The Answer 'Yes' is on Page 6."
Speaking of The Onion, it's time once again to link to an all-time classic: Area Students Prepare Breasts for Increased Springtime Display. After a brutal 6-month winter in Minneapolis this is welcome news, indeed.
Cool site: the mit media laboratory aesthetics + computation group. If you're on a T1, check out John Maeda's far-out typography flick.
All hail Asahi Super "Dry," winner of the inaugural Sauced 16. Up next: Allies vs. Axis, a reenactment of World War II, except with beer, not bullets. Your vote will help determine the winners of these epic battles.
Let's open the mailbag:
MESSAGE: Sometimes late at night, I drink red wine, turn on my computer screen, and stare longingly at your web site. After a glass or two I sometimes reach my hand down in between my...
Whoa! Wrong letter!
SUBJECT: Pretty Hard Criticism...From someone with a UI as horrible as yours
MESSAGE: You critisize others for there poor UI design. Well, exactly how readable is
BLACK ON YELLOW text? Not very. How usable is your tiny navigation bar? NOT
VERY. Before you go critisizing others for poor UI, LOOK AT YOUR OWN SITE!!!
PS: Yes, this is a flame. Deal with it.
With the recent torrent of press about web logs, I wonder if weblogging is now post-peak. Will the cool kids even be doing it in a few months? And what will they do next?
Margo Jefferson offers a contrarian view to the Dave Eggers love fest:
Eggers has staked his claim on advertising his book (in the Norman Mailer ''Advertisements for Myself'' sense) as both nonfiction and fiction. With the memoir in decline, so publishers tell us, and the novel reviving but not yet in full ascent, the borderland is the place to be. But how he presumes on his readers: don't you want to know everything I'm thinking, I love you, I hate you, listen to me, look at me! ''Aren't I the most brilliant boy you've ever seen?'' he seems to ask on every one of the 436 pages, not counting the preface and appendix. Mailer was asking too, but in 1950's and 60's style, he was trying hard to be a man about it. In the mode of our times, Eggers wheedles, demands and declaims like a man-child.
Fun Flash: Rabbi Phunkiewsky's School of New Communication. (Warning: needs a skip intro or two.)
Waiting for takeoff, sitting in seat 13B on a rickety old NWA DC-9, I stumbled upon the transcript (incomplete) of Alaska Airlines Flight 261 in the April issue of Harper's. I can't believe how cool and poised both the captain and first officer were, even as their plane corkscrewed nose-first into the Pacific Ocean.
Atari 2600 golf guy needs your help. The viewer ratings for his tips on playing Amen Corner at Augusta National are, um, subpar, and need a lift.
James Lileks cleaned out his music collection and created a potpourri of hodgepodge called Poor Man's Speedball. "Perfect for drinking coffee and liquor simultaneously." Mmmm. Sounds good.
Mike Haney thinks The Boss sucks:
His throaty rasp has no range, and he constantly looks and sounds like he's taking a squirrel (insert your word here: dookie, dump, growler ... you know what I mean, but I promised my mother I wouldn't swear in these columns anymore.) Like him or not, The Boss is simply not a singer who's easy to listen to.
A firm pat on the back goes out to Australian David Moore, who created this kick-ass chess game in under 5k ... though it did eventually succumb to the Panov Attack (fianchetto variation).
Dumbest question ever, posed in the May issue of Vanity Fair: "Does Cleavage Sell Magazines?"
If you're involved in wireless you may be interested in a very short presentation I gave at Comdex-Chicago last week. It's called "WAP Doesn't Suck." (MS PowerPoint. 206K.)
Coming very soon to the mobile version of this site: interactive WAP movies.
A couple of nights out in the Chicago bar scene confirmed a change in male-female interaction that I've recently witnessed in Minneapolis pubs. There was a time, say, in the few years after college, when men were the hunters and women were the prey. They had what we wanted, after all, and knew it. But now, as single women enter their early 30s, many with their biological clocks ticking louder than Big Ben, it's men who are meat.
The hunt is not as fun as it looks on TV, however. There's a sense of panic and a whiff of desperation in the air, and it's not pretty. In fact, some of my peers now hit the bars with a money clip, a cell phone, and a bat.
Have I mentioned how much I like Glenn O'Brien's poem "I'm a Man"?
Phil Mickelson is growing breasts.
Congratulations to Austin High School teacher Mr. Stutz, who won the first annual Minnesota State Mullet Competition.
GQ Style Guy (and guys' guy) Glenn O'Brien has written a book of poetry. Here's the wonderful "I'm a Man":
"I put on my pants one leg at a time.
I piss standing up and don't take nothing lying down.
If you're looking for a fight I'll give you one
or at least point you in the right direction.
When I talk Dean Witter listens.
When push comes to shove the buck stops here.
Evolution. You're looking at it sister.
I'm a man. I spell M-A-N. Man.
And the whole damn race was named after me."
I love Masters week. It's a sign of longer days, warmer weather, and the beginning of another golf season. The snow should be gone by May.
The weblog is on hiatus until next week. In the meantime, here's a Masters-related 5k entry. 9 out of 10 viewers agree: "I don't get it."
|lyrics I dig
If you wanna be happy for the rest of your life
Never make a pretty woman your wife
So for my personal point of view
Get an ugly girl to marry you