The Eagles’ “Hotel California,” released in 1976, might be one of the most played songs of all time. But the radio anthem has gotten a second wind lately as musicians and fans listen to the original recording as they never could before, playing each part of the song—its vocals, percussion, bass and epic guitar solo—in isolation.
"It’s a whole new entertainment experience," said Los Angeles musician Baron Von Luxxury, who stumbled upon the deconstructed master recording online in 2012. During a year of remixing, he amplified the bass line, sped up the tempo, cut out the chorus and distorted the guitars. He also salted in special effects to give his version "robot flair."
Here is a list of good songs from 2014. It’s the same stuff everyone else likes, but just songs, and a list, and by me. I put “Problem” and “Talk Dirty” back-to-back so you can have 6 full minutes of uninterrupted SAX JAMS.
the Atlanta DMV is just a trailer in the middle of a gigantic empty field, and when i went, there were four (4) men using push lawnmowers to mow the gigantic field. beyond that there is a gigantic empty parking lot, and beyond that you can sort of make out turner field but honestly you could be anywhere. just in case you ever need to go to the DMV in Atlanta and you show up and ask yourself, “is this it, or is this an elaborate identity thief front/the location for the remake of Holes?”
I get so bummed out whenever I find something cool on wikipedia and the disambiguation at the top is like “For the album by Some Band On Nuclear Blast see:” because it feels like some awful guy rubbing his hand all through a pizza you’re about to eat just to grab an olive and say “olives are fucking sick”
The Brothers Chap have already started developing ideas for a new Strong Bad email, and there are lots of possibilities beyond that. “It depends on how whole-hog we go, if we give Strong Bad a Twitter or Strong Sad a Tumblr.”
Burnt a slice of grilled eggplant so badly it became alight and continued smoking even after I’d taken it from the grill, the center glowing red, a purple ember ashed over black and plucked from the fire.
I saw a job listing for a data analyst at Etsy and was immediately struck by a very specific vision of what being a data analyst at Etsy involves: everyone forced to wear green eyeshades handmade from upcycled lighting gels and cable ties cut from the wrists of wrongfully arrested protesters, reports printed on handmade paper and decoupaged onto shoes, bank records bound in moleskins, mobile meetings on penny farthings, only using pre-1973 statistical models, and so forth and so forth and so on and so on.
Just FYI, remember if you want your donations to go to directly fund the medical care of low-income women, you need to donate to your local Planned Parenthood chapter or other local women’s health clinic. If you want your donations to fund lobbying, especially on the national level, you should donate to Planned Parenthood USA; donations to the national organization mostly won’t fund medical care.
Here’s a piece that does a pretty good job responding to the criticism of that Facebook study. The argument is as follows: Facebook already manipulates what you see in your news feed; Facebook users are well aware of that; therefore, manipulating users’ Facebook feeds in this new way (to display less positive or negative content) isn’t an ethical violation.
The thing I don’t get here, though, is that, if Facebook already alters users’ Facebook feeds, why didn’t the researchers use this existing manipulations as a kind of “natural experiment”? After all, surely the existing Facebook algorithm already produces news feeds that have different emotional valences, and a researcher that had access to the full set of Facebook data could use those instances to test a hypothesis. It wouldn’t have been too hard: just find two people that share, say, 95% of the same friends, look for instances when those two people saw different posts in their news feed, assess the emotional valence of each news feed, and look for differences in the posts they then produce. Sure, that’s a slightly different design (paired-subjects v. pretest/posttest) but it would have entirely gotten around the ethical issues. Why not use this far more unobtrusive method?
After a day of exploring we came back to the pool to swim and have a few drinks before dinner. There was this kid with Justin Bieber hair and I said he looked like an asshole. We found an inflatable ball floating in the deep end and tried to keep it in the air for as long as possible, which wasn’t very long.
After a while the kid came over to us. He was 13 years old and from Texas and on vacation with his grandparents and so he didn’t have anyone to play with. My wife asked if he wanted to hit the ball around with us and he said sure, so this barely post-tween spent his time on vacation hitting an inflatable ball around the pool with two thirtysomethings.
He had trouble in the water, not just moving through it but staying afloat, so my wife taught him the three basic strokes: the crawl, the backstroke, the breaststroke . He took to then quickly, but they seemed utterly new to him, like pushing through water with your hands cupped was something he’d never even heard of before. “How did you learn this stuff?” he asked.
"I took swim classes. Didn’t you ever take swim classes?"
His head dipped under the water and he gulped and spat. “I have a lot to do for school. I’m too busy to take swim classes.”
I tossed the ball to my wife, she set it to the kid, and he slammed it back at me, way too hard, over my head and onto the deck. Maybe he didn’t understand how the game worked.
I enjoyed the WWI focus in the Arts section of the Sunday Times. This piece, by Ed Rothstein, wonders why people reacted so negatively to the carnage of WWI when they hadn’t done so to almost equally horrific carnages, like that of the US Civil War. It seems to me that one of the biggest changes in cultural attitudes over the last 200 years involves not only the value but the meaning of a human life. Before modern medicine, death is so frequent, arbitrary, and unavoidable that a life must mean less, or else we would have spent all our time in grief; there must be life after life, or else we have surely been shortchanged by our meager lifespans. As medicine and standards of living improve, a cult of mourning emerges that gives more meaning to life by extending it past death in the lives of the still-living, while at the same time recognizing the inevitability of death. Death has meaning, even if life does not. And then the Great War provides the first widespread example of technology being used to end life at the same time technology has the capacity to safe life. This was not the case during the Civil War: if you didn’t die on the battlefield, you were almost equally likely to die at home. Now, no more. If a human life becomes something we can preserve, it becomes something we must preserve. The idea that we have a duty to prevent all death (seen, for instance, in calls to prevent mass shootings by making it easier to involuntarily commit people with mental health problems) seems like a moral inevitability, but it is very much a historical development.
I went to the farmers market on Friday and the girl selling me pears was really, really high. I mean, aside from being a girl selling pears at a farmers market in Seattle, she was bleary-eyed and grinning like a maniac. When we asked her if there were different kinds of pears, she said something that sounded like “even though it looks like one’s wearing jorts and the other’s a train conductor they’re all going to the same station!!!”
But here is the reason I say she was the highest person I have ever seen: I put the pears on the scale and she punched in the price per pound. Then she peered at the screen to tell me the price. “Four twenty,” she said, and didn’t laugh. She didn’t laugh. She was so high that she said “420” and didn’t laugh. Because she was so high she didn’t realize she was saying 420.
Today I was waiting to pay at the supermarket and the clerk in the next line over started whistling “All Star” by Smash Mouth. He was doing it very deliberately at the guy bagging in my line but I couldn’t tell if he was being friendly or aggressive. It was a little of both. He whistled the entire song front to back, all the verses and all the choruses. It was the cruelest thing I’ve ever seen another human being do.
"The committee members, who spoke on condition of anonymity because committee issues are meant to confidential, said they had mixed feelings about leaving the segment out of the telecast, admitting that they want to be included in the montage on live television when they die.”
Dwone’s shooting fits into a pattern that has been largely ignored by the national media descending on Seattle this week in the wake of the SPU shooting. The Seattle police were censured by the Justice Department for a pattern of civil rights abuses. Dwone was shot a block away from where another man was shot just over a month ago, and near two other murders in April. Yet there were no police near him Sunday morning, no one to deter the fourth and fifth murders in that same small neighborhood within a month and a half. While there are certainly large-scale factors leading to crimes like this, we know that a greater police presence results in lower violent crime. If you go up to Capitol Hill on Saturday night, you’ll have no trouble finding the police; if you call yourself an anarchist and organize a march through Capitol Hill, the police will turn out in riot gear and put up barricades. But if you live in a poor neighborhood and there are repeated homicides, you can’t get enough police presence to stop two young men from getting shot in the street.
City officials have promised changes in the wake of last weekend’s shootings. They have cut down tree branches to improve visibility. They will also install three new streetlights. Dwone was twenty-three years old.