Category Archives: media

The Day the LOLCats Died

So, you’ve probably heard about, or may already be experiencing the partial internet blackout to draw attention to and protest SOPA/PIPA, the MPAA/RIAA lobbyist written and funded sibling bills that aim to fuck up the internet for everyone by basically handing censorship authority over to corporations in the name of protecting intellectual property.

Enjoy this. Then call your damn Senators!

Read more from the Electronic Frontier Foundation here.

Doctor Who Timeline / Infographic

So, I like this mostly because it is really long, and thus exploits one of the affordances of the web format. I mean, it would either look like crap in a magazine, or involve a big fold-out thingy, and probably no one would bother to make it then.

Anyway, this comes from It’s got all your Doctors, your Companions, your villains, and little fun facts.

Minor quibbles:

Considered by many to be the most iconic Doctor, the fourth Doctor appeared in more seasons seasons and adventures than any other.

The Fourth Doctor is the only Doctor.

 “Blink” is consistently cited as one of the most popular episodes in the history of the series, even though the Doctor is largely absent from the majority of the episode.

The supposed “Doctor” in this case is the tenth “Doctor,” in light of which I would suggest replacing “even though” with “because.”

Fun fact not included in the poster: Lalla Ward, who played the second Romanadvoratrelundar, is married to Richard Dawkins.

How to fix the Miss America Pageant

So, remember last year’s Miss America Pageant? Let me remind you. We were treated to Alyse Eady, Miss Arkansas, whose talent was singing “I want to be a cowboy’s sweetheart,” including the yodeling, through the use of two ventriloquist dummies. AND SHE DIDN”T WIN!

Ventriloquist yodeling, people. Here’s the video:

Anyway, the fact that she didn’t win obviously points to the deep corruption at the core of our socio-economico-pageanto-political system. However, the fact that she came in second is reason to hope for the future. In the vein of that hope, I humbly suggest that next year’s pageant involve a group talent competition. I furthermore suggest, nay, demand, that one of the groups do an act like the one in the next video.

This video features the Warriors of Goja on an Indian talent show and comes here via Jason Kottke notes:

I’ve been on the web for 17 years now, I’m a professional link finder, and I have never in my life seen anything like these guys performing on an Indian talent show. They *start off* by biting into fluorescent light bulbs and it just gets more nuts from there.

Note: best viewed with the volume up.

There is no one out there who can honestly say that ten Miss America contestants jumping through columns of fluorescent lightbulbs and hitting each other with sledgehammers would not be the greatest television event in history.

Also, is there someone who can translate what the female judge says to them at the end? Anyone? Tanmoy? Anyone?

Occupy the East India Trading Company

So, remember the third, terrible Pirates of the Caribbean movie? The big villain is Lord Cutler Beckett, a bigwig at the fictional East India Trading Company (any similarity to the East India Company purely coincidental).

His catch phrase, which he says whenever he is screwing someone over or doing something unethical, is “It’s just good business.” Which makes him sort of emblematic of what the whole Occupy movement is protesting against.

Near the end of the movie, all of his scheming and manipulation has backfired. We are treated to a prolonged sequence of him walking down a flight of stairs on his ship while the ship (the whole world, one could say) is collapsing (or, rather, exploding) around him. He repeats his catchphrase just before being engulfed in a huge fireball.

In honor of Lord Beckett, I whipped up this little thing. Feel free to share it before the cease-and-desist order comes.

And here is the thematically related next installation in the Occupy Darwin Eats Cake series:

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Public radio, Occupy, and Darwin Eats Cake

So, look, I like public radio as much as the next guy. Which is to say, you know, Car Talk is sort of funny, I guess. But at this point, I think I’m pretty much done with them.

It seems that these guys are so desperate to avoid accusations of liberal bias (even if they come from unabashedly biased right-wing sources) that they will fire (or force someone else to fire) anyone who participates in the Occupy protests.

The first was opera reporter Lisa Simeone, who participated in an Occupy-related protest near Washington. She was the host of Soundprint, an independently produced show distributed by NPR, but was fired after pressure from NPR, which was prompted by criticism from Fox News and the Daily Caller. Her other show, World of Opera, refused to fire her, so NPR dropped distribution of the show, which will now be distributed by North Carolina’ WDAV.

Simeone noted that, if she is in violation of NPR’s ethics codes for speaking outside of work, then so are a lot of NPRs political reporters. Of course, the difference is that she was acting as an individual citizen, and not being paid, plus, she does not talk about politics at all in her radio show. Other people, who are political reporters, get paid to speak for businesses and on mainstream media outlets. So, there’s that.

Just to recap: Opera reporter exercises free speech, for free, on her own time? Ethics violation. Political reporter paid by corporations to talk politics on their own time? AOK!

More recently, Caitlin Curran was fired from her job at The Takeaway, which is produced by WNYC and Public Radio International, after becoming virally famous for this photo:

You can read Curran’s first-hand account on Gawker.

My guess is that public radio is running scared right now from the right-wing attack on their federal funding, which has been going on forever, but has been particularly vocal over the past six months or so. Here’s the thing, though, it does not matter how much you bend over to appease the right. They are going to keep coming after you. Even if all the federal funding is taken away, they are still going to keep coming after you.

The problem is that to the right, public radio is inherently symbolic of liberalism, if for no other reason than that it does not pander to anti-intellectualism.

Anyway, all of this brings us to the latest episode of Darwin Eats Cake. I posted the first two strips in the Occupy Darwin Eats Cake series here.  Here are the next three:

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