4.27.2005

new episodes of pop life v2.0 available for download

hey kids, i finally got the last two radio shows uploaded. you can download them at the pop life v2.0 blog or the pop life radio show archives page. enjoy!

4.26.2005

the ragin asian reviews the sarah mclachlan concert

not really. for me to attempt some kind of objective description of last night's sarah maclachlan concert at the santa barbara bowl would be futile for a few reasons.

1) there are only so many ways that i can say "super-duper-awesome-kickass-fantabulous-i-would-stalk-her-if-i-could".

2) in 1994, sarah maclachlan began her reign as the queen of ragin' asian land. as her loyal subject, i am compelled to love her with my whole heart, mind, and soul. but even beside that, a beautiful as an angel as sarah maclachlan is, she deserves my love and i would never ever say anything to besmirch her beautiful name, person, and voice.

anyways, the short of it was great show. i had kinda crappy seats but her voice sounds great. i mean really great. erik, my roommate who i attended the concert astutely noted that her voice in person sounds exactly the same as it does on the record which can only mean that she really does have that incredible of a voice.

on a side note, it's always been a fantasy of mine that when i go to a concert, the performer would announce something to the effect of "ladies and gentlemen, please welcome a very special guest...mr. erik clapton" or some other really big name that i didn't expect to see. alas it really hasn't happened yet. anyways, erik and i got to thinking what would be the most shocking or non-sensical scenario for the sarah mclachlan concert. this is what we came up with.

scenario #1 - at one point in the concert, sarah asked the crowd if we were warm enough (the sb bowl is an outdoor venue). anyways, then she would say "cuz i think it's getting hot in herrrrrrrrrrre. i said, it's getting hot in herrrrrrrrrre." and then her guitarist would rip into the guitar riff from the nelly song, and then nelly and his whole posse would come out and perform the song, with sarah maclachlan singing the "i am getting so hot, i'm gonna take my clothes off" part.

scenario #2 - sarah would ask the crowd, "is there anyone here from los angeles?" let the angelenos cheer. then she would say, "is there anyone from san francisco here?" then let them cheer. and then in the deep, clipped voice that rapper some times use, she says" is there anyone here from the A-T-L!" and then the intro to the ludacris song, "move" starts, you know, the high hat and the truck horn, "duhn-duhn, duhn-duhn, duhn-duhn, duhn-duhn" and then ludacris would come out and start doing the song, and then before the second verse, sarah announces to the crowd, "straight from the NY penitentiary system, MYSTIKAL!!!!" and then mystikal comes out and does his part of the song.

i'm kinda partial to scenario #2. if you guys can come up with any other crazy scenarios please, by all means, let us know in the comments section.

4.25.2005

blogroll update

just a quick administrative note for posterity. there are two changes in the blogroll you see on the right sidebar. first, pop life, asian american scholar/hip hop critic oliver wang's blog has been changed over to pop licks, a blog that is now jointly done by oliver and junichi semitsu, another bay area asian-am scholar and pop cultural critic. for the most part, it's still entertaining and informative but i'm not so sure that it is still ideal type blog that i used to aspire to. perhaps i should start group blogging with some other people. the other important thing about this, is that the pop life radio show no longer has to worry about people getting us confused with oliver's blog.

the other change is that you'll notice that carly's pornblography is no longer on the blogroll. the adult entertainment industry publicist who provided a very accessible look inside a fascinating popular cultural phenomenon has decided to no longer update the blog, which is too bad because she was a gifted writer that provided a unique and dare i say, important take on the going ons of a phenomenon that has infiltrated our everyday lives, yet still to a certain extent remains taboo. happy trails carly.

on another note, i've got two episodes of pop life v2.0 to get online. i'll try to get that tonight, but know that some radio lovin' from the ragin asian and jp is on the way

4.24.2005

and i thought bono knew how to work a cigarette on camera

i was at the laundromat, when i looked up at the tv, and then starting laughing out loud. people started to stare at me, but then i pointed to the tv and when they looked they started laughing out loud as well when they saw this.

the ragin' asian reviews sin city

yeah, i know this is probably six weeks late, but like i said before, until someone starts paying me to write these reviews, i'll watch the movies on my own damn schedule thank you very much. anyways, went and saw sin city, the movie based on frank miller's graphic novels on saturday. if you haven't seen it, i'm sure that you've seen the various trailers as they are visually capticating. all the black and white and cheesy deadpan dialogue reminiscent of film noir.

anyways, up until i saw it it seemed to me that everyone agreed that visually, it's stunning, but people were mixed on the actual movie content itself. and obviously enough, i'm just going to fall in line with everyone else. visually, this movie is really neat to look at. this is coming from someone who hates black and white movies. for whatever reason it worked. jp, who i say the movie with also pointed out that the black and white lessened the impact of some of the more graphically violent and grotesque moments in the movie. but aside from that, the black and white with strategic splashes of color defintely evoked something different than your average movie. alot of times i felt like i was watching an animated movie, which i think can be annoying, as i thought it was in spiderman, but again, since this movie was all about style, it ended up working in that in contributed to transporting me to this idealized place of basin city.

which also justifies the acting jobs in this movie. it seems to me that this was a win win situation for all of the actors and actresses in this movie, cuz there's nothing subtle about it. i imagine that frank miller, robert rodriguez and quentin tarnatino before each shot, would confer with the actors and suggest, "why don't you try doing this scene...oh, i don't know...way over the top." usually, i hate overacting, but again, i hate to fall back onto this crutch, but it fit the general idealized environment that the directors were going for. what's ironic is that this overacting is my main critique of movies made before 1970. you know, everyone acts in that over affected way.

it terms of story and plot, well, it was neat. nothing inspiring or nothing to make you question the human condition or anything, but it was interesting and you did want to know how the story turns out. also, the usual device of graphic novels, the happy ending, but something goes amiss in the happy ending was used throughout. which got me thinking. like i said, for me, this is a complete popcorn movie that really doesn't have much to say about the real world in which we live in. but i wonder if i just don't recognize the themes that are usually covered in the graphic novel. for example, the way that the evil organization was set up seemed like just a plot device to me, but i wonder if this is part of a larger theme in graphic novels about the corruption of power, blah blah blah. if any graphic novel readers out there have any enlightenment for us on this subject, please leave a comment and pull the curtain back for us laity.

anyways, great popcorn flick that's fun to watch without having to think too hard. final grade: B+/A-

4.23.2005

god bless academia

two notable research projects from the ivory tower

1) email reduces your IQ more than reefer. according to this bit of research form england, too much email during your workday makes you dumber during the course of the day. dumber than you would be if you smoked a doobie the night before. granted there are a lot of problems with this research. to base a link on survey data is quite questionable. i also have problems with the concept of monitoring changes in IQ over the course of a day. but i do think that the general concept that people still haven't quite figured out how to use email is a pretty good assertion. as mentioned in my mission statement (which has long disappeared from my server space), i have to deal with 1001 stupid emails on the UCSB's sociology department-wide listserv, and having to delete them definitely makes me dumber.

2) asian men don't have smaller penises than everyone else (thanks to the most important blog...ever for directing my attention to this). but all the ladies that know me already knew that.

4.21.2005

back up in this y'all!

that was my you got served type attempt at talking like they do on the street. anyways, i just wanted to let y'all know that i'm mostly recovered from the whole wedding weekend. it was a good time but there was lots of pop culture news and sports news that i need to weigh in on. in the meantime here is a picture from the wedding.

p.s. in keeping with the street theme of this post, i thought that i would do the most ghetto photoshop job ever. whaddya think?

4.13.2005

national survey on gays in sports

there is just so much here, i don't even know where to start. i'll probably just post comments as i have more time to digest these numbers. you, o sweet clean blog reader, please feel free to do the same. there are some questions that i have about the sampling, but from what i can tell, it's not a completely flawed system, so there's probably some truth to these numbers.

jermaine o'neal - nba all star and astute racial critic

jermaine o'neal caused a little hulabaloo yesterday when he said that enacting a minimum age requirement for the nba (like the nfl does) is motivated by racism.

here's the thing about athletes when they talk about this stuff. they have insider access to what they're talking about, but good lord, they just don't know how to articulate their thoughts. ironically, if the age limit was in place, maybe they o'neal might have learned how to be a little more eloquent and thoughtful in his quotes.

anyways, i'm not sure that david stern and the nba owners are racist. i actually really don't think that they are, and actually, in terms of structural features (coaches, front office positions, relative pay), they're actually the least racist of all of the big 4 league sports. what i think jermaine o'neal should have said is that instituting a minimum age will result in racism. he's right to say that the people that this rule will affect the most are black people, and as we all know, not acknowledging race or the racial consequences of your actions, is a little bit racist.

i don't know where i really fall on this matter. i see the value of enacting the age limit to create a better product. however, at the same time, o'neal used the voting and drafting analogy. but instead of voting he said that if 18 year olds are old enough to die for their country, then they should be old enough to make millions of dollars in the nba. again, like i said, i wish that he had put in a little more thought before he issued this statement. at the same time, it's true. what the nfl does with its age limit and what the nba wants to do with its age limit is basically deny someone the right to work for no good reason. if a team wants to hire an 18 year old to do its job, then it should be able to. child labor laws only should apply to children.

anyways, i spent a good deal of time on this because i imagine that most sportswriters will respond to this by saying that the age limit has nothing to do with race. i want to say, it may not be motivated by racist attitudes, but there certainly almost is a relationship to race.

4.12.2005

set your tivos for may 1st

can't....stop....laughing....

pop life v2.0 spring quarter schedule


pop life will start its third season on KJUC 770/880AM in santa barbara this saturday at 3:00PM. unfortunately, i will be out of town this upcoming weekend so i won't be able to be there this saturday, but jp, finally unencumbered by bob's unrelenting attempts to turn every discussion into a discussion about lindsay lohan's boobs, will probably deliver an even better show in my absence. so all of you kids in the UCSB residence halls and dorms (you know who you are) please tune in. the rest of you, as always, the shows will be posted to the pop life v2.0 blog and on the pop life radio show archives page.

seriously, she's gotta be a woman now, right?

britney spears is preggers!

but really, we all knew that, we just now have official confirmation from the britney spears website. if you haven't seen this website, you really need to check it out. it's actually extremely bizarre, very tame actually. anyways, i can't provide a direct link to her latest message to her fans since the site is completely flash based, but do some snooping around in her "love b" section where britster pens missives for her fans, and you'll find one entry marked "false tabloids" that i think you'll find especially life changing. who knew that britney had such a good handle on the critique of the american media and their obsession with celebrity? anyways, i think that this is a fairly recent redesign of her website. i guess now that britney's gonna be a mommy, she can't have any proof that she dresses like a 2-dollar whore laying around on the web. because seriously, if you type in "britney spears" on google, you won't find a damn thing.

anyways, i was talking with fellow pop life collaborator jp, and we were talking about how britney must thoughtfully weighs the consequences of her actions.

"uhh, he's going to have a baby with another woman, well, shoot i guess i better marry him....now that we've been married for 6 months, i think it's time to get pregnant. that'll show that other baby who's boss."

needless to say, i don't think britney did well on the analytical part of her SATs.

anyways, as i've recently blogged about here, this is quite a turn of events, because the last we heard, britney and kevvie were having a little trouble in paradise. it seems that they made the obvious decision to save the marriage by having a baby, which i hear always ends up working out.

however, more importantly, we need to figure out how this affects the playboy by 2005 prediction. it looks grim, but jp has another good theory that might save us. she noticed that there have been a lot of celebrities who have posed in playboy shortly after having a baby. i.e. denise richards, lisa rinna, and teri polo to name a few. she thinks it's some inane way to reclaim your sexuality after you bloat up during the pregnancy, which makes a whole lot of sense to me. so if she's announcing now, you figure that she's around three months pregnant, which means that baby will be due in september, which gives her a couple of months to get back in shape just in time for the christmas issue of playboy.

i'd say right now that it's about 2-3 that she poses. however, one bet that is money in the bank is that her child is going to make kelly osbourne and paris hilton look like the von trapp kids. move over frances bean, there's going to be a new craziest mommy on the block.

barbara ehrenreich: not a douchebag

last night i went to see a lecture by noted author, barbara ehrenreich. for those of you who don't know who she is, she is a really good writer, someone who i actually consider a sociologist (although i doubt she would own up to that title). she writes mainly about class and gender in the states and her latest book, nickel and dimed sounds like a fantastic look inside the world of low wage labor. i haven't read it yet, but it is surely now on my short list of books to read.

anyways, she was a great speaker - funny, sarcastic, and passionate all at once. she spoke about her experiences for the book. what she did was get really low paying jobs in several cities around the US and based on her salary from those jobs (wal-mart associate and housecleaner), she wanted to find out if she could make ends meet. her conclusion, as you might guess is that you can't. even in states where the minimum wage is above the federally mandated $5.15 an hour, she figured that you would have to work 128 hours a week, just to get a decent place to live and feed yourself. furthermore, she found out that this kind of labor, despite being stigmatized by us, are far from low-skill.

anyways, i won't neccesarily get into all of the specifics of her talk, but one thing that did stick our for me was her discussion of the moral polarization of the the US. we all know about the economic (rich get richer, poor get poorer) and political (right gets more extreme, the left smokes more pot) polarization of the states, but i think that it was instructive to think of it in moral terms. the basic gist of this concept is that we enforce more morals in the form of legislation and restrictions on the poor. we make them take drug tests to get jobs, we prosecute them more extremely for first offenses, and we blame any kind of economic poverty on the lack of moral quality of people. meanwhile at the other end of the spectrum, an "anything goes" mentality is accepted for their actions in the name of capitalism. in other words, corporations knowlingly make decisions that will hurt people that can't protect themselves, we let CEO's try to defend themselves by feigning ignorance, and we let them pay people less than they need to live for things that the rich people need to stay rich.

not that this is news or anything, but i definitely appreciated the way she presented it. you see, here at the ragin asian, one thing that we are especially fond of doing is calling people douchebags when they are trying to claim that they are not. and that's something that i don't think that normal people do enough when it comes to class in america. it's not that economic forces drive walmart to rip of their employees. rather, it's someone who makes a conscious decision to make money off the hardship of others. in other words, people aren't poor because of structural factors necessarily, they're poor because those in power are a bunch of big douchebags. and she wasn't afraid to name names when she called these people douchebags. of course, she didn't use the phrase, "douchebag", but i still think that basically, she and i are kindred spirits in this respect.

she's the kind of researcher that i aspire to be. someone who uses rigorously sound research methodology, writes in a completely accessible way, and really teaches something to her reader that they might not have known before or at the very least gets them to think about something in a different way. i really feel like i learned something last night. and i've been in higher ed for over 10 years now. believe me, i know stuff, and she still was able to present things that i've never thought about or knew.

the thing is it's so hard to believe any writer these days. we're so jaded by political partisanship or general distrust of media. but i believe her. i think that she is speaking after careful reasoned thought and she is speaking from the heart. i know full well that she's as a proclaimed liberal as they come, but i still think that she still has come to the right conclusions, which i think is something that is rare here in the 21st century. so in some sense, to me, she's a lot like bono (except that bono probably had better hair in 1986).

anyways, she's completely right about how we as a nation and government approach the problem of poverty. seriously people, just think, not more than 40 or so years ago, there was a real movement that all sorts of people got behind, a war on poverty. people really seemed to want to try and do something about this. i can't know for sure, since i wasn't there, but from what i can tell, the movement was real, and some real progress was made. however, it just doesn't seem like that's the case anymore. obviously, part of the problem are apathetic douchebags like me who sit in the ivory tower without doing anything accept make dick and fart jokes about celebrities. but barb's talk was almost enough to get me off my lazy ass and do soemthing....almost, of course, apathy will always probably rule here at the ragin asian.

anyways, i still need to blog aobut the SFJazz collective concert and i have some things to say about jermaine o'neil's recent comments, but i really wanted to get this post up. if you have the time, i really recommend that you read an article that she wrote for harper's magazine, called welcome to cancerland. it's one of those pieces that should completely change the way you think about health care and gender here in these states.

4.11.2005

f jay leno

my synonymically named blogger, the angry asian man, said it best in his post on this, "jay leno is not funny."

4.10.2005

the ragin asian reviews the U2 concert

april 6th, 2005 was an important day for me for two reasons. first it marks the one year anniversary of bob ngo, the blogger. for that all important historic first post you can click here and see how much of a hack that i've become when it comes to writing.

anyways to celebrate this historic occasion, i went down to LA to see my favorite band in the world, U2 in concert. i got to be honest with ya, i was a little nervous about going to this particular show. one of my greatest fears in life is that U2, in their advanced age for a rock band will turn into the roling stones or the eagles, a walking caricature of themselves and cease to be relevant as a musical force, thereby making me, one of their number one fans, officially old and out of touch with today's music scene. also, while i like the new album quite a bit, i'm almost sure that i would place at least four other of their albums as better. i figured that they would play a lot of the new stuff and then consequently, i would be disappointed that they didn't play some of the songs that i would like to hear. fortunately, i had nothing to worry about since U2 basic blew the roof off of the place.

you can view the whole set list here, cuz i'm just going to hit on some of the evening's highlights. first off, the thing that really stuck out for me from the night was the fact that the edge was OFF HIS ASS. i've always really enjoyed the edge's guitar work and sound, and i've always appreciated that he seemed to play what was perfect for the songs, but tonight, he blew me away both from a technical standpoint, as well the usual artistic soundpoint. i don't know if it was the sound mix or what but i don't think i've ever heard such great guitar work live. during new year's day, they let him take a bit of an extended solo and he really was shredding his fretboard, something that he's really not known for. this was done several times throughout the night. coupled with the exceptional tone he was getting from his rig and it made for a little bit of guitar nirvana.

the whole band actually sounded exceptional that night. i'd go so far as to say that this is the best that i've ever heard them sound musically in the three times that i've seen them. bono of course was the consummate showman. some of his antics included playing the drums during love and peace or else, a rather moving tribute to the pope, donning a dodger's cap, and imploring the crowd to light up the night with their cell phones. but as always, despite his advanced age, his voice is still top notch. the set list was kinda weird in that i was correct in that they didn't play a lot of their usual concert staples such as with or without you, even better than the real thing, and desire. they also didn't play anything off of zooropa or pop life, which i know are albums that everyone else really hates, but there are a few songs on those that i think are quite outstanding songs. there were a lot of deep cuts as well, they played at least three songs off of boy and october aside from sunday bloody sunday and new year's day which was nice. they also played zoo station, the opening song from achtung baby, which was really cool to hear live.

you see the thing with U2 is that everyone always accuses them of selling out and being really pretensious when they do stuff like try to save the world. but seriously, in concert, it still seems really earnest to me. i really believe that bono misses the pope, and that he thinks that the problems in africa are more important than some other issues. in other words, he still moves me in that idealistic/quasi-homoerotic way that rock stars should. and i for one think that makes for a good show.

another interesting thing is that it was a typical LA crowd for anything, a little lacking in enthusiasm...you know, the applause that you usually hear after the encore was a bit lacking, but we made up for it in other ways. something that was really neat i thought was during vertigo, was after bono sings "hello, hello, hello", the whole crowd didn't miss a beat and said in unison, "HOLA!"

lastly, some of you know that i think that there is no greater song to grace the face of the earth than U2's one, and it sounded amazing. bottom line, this is probably the best i've ever seen these guys, which is something considering the circumstances.

one last note from the show before i move on to the next review. during mysterious ways, bono, as he has during the last few tours, brought up a woman from the audience to dance with him. so he's doing his thing with this lady, and somehow a second woman gets on stage. this woman is smoking hot, too and she starts kicking up a notch by doing some really dirty dancing. i mean she's really shaking her money maker out there. even from my vantage point (our seats were behind the stage, a little obstructed by some of the stage props, but still quite good), it was a bit much. so during the guitar solo, bono and the first woman do this fake running away thing from the scary/nasty hot woman. she follows of course, and then i don't quite remember how this happened, but she's still dancing, and then she gets down on her hands and knees, with her ass facing bono and starts backing up while shaking her ass. bono's reaction was kinda funny, in that you could tell, in his head he was thinking, "ok, that's quite enough of this", and he walks back on stage while security gets the lady off stage. without missing a beat, bono sings but in a concilatory manner, the chorus of mysterious ways, "it's all right...it's all right, she moves in mysterious ways", as if explaining to the crowd the behavior of this woman. it was a good time.

anyways, here are the photos that i got from my cell phone camera. they suck, but what do you want, it's a cell phone camera. i could only get pictures of bono. the stage was set up where the spotlights were reflecting off the stage and it was too bright to get a picture of any of the other guys.


i went to see the SFJazz Collective last night, but considering that this post is already quite lengthy, i'll blog about it later tonight.

lastly, i apologize for the untimeliness of my blogging. between the concert, school, going home to texas next week, and something else, i've been super busy lately. the quantity of posts will still be light until another couple of weeks when things hopefully settle down.

4.05.2005

jane fonda: workout pioneer, actress, author and big ol' douchebag (but still hot for her age)

jane fonda's new memoir is out.

honestly, i don't have any real opinion on jane fonda. the hanoi jane thing doesn't bother me, and the movies that i've seen her in are pretty good, but nothing life changing. which is why her quote from the cnn story about her book is curious to me:
I think it's an important book. This is not just my story.
last i checked, by definition, an autobiography is a book about your story. i just wanted to point this out because one of the ragin' asian's cardinal rules is that when you represent yourself as acting for the good of others, when you are really just saying, "what about me?", then you are a douchebag.

4.04.2005

britney spears playboy prediction update

i have idea about the veracity of this news item, but apparently, britney spears' marriage is on the rocks. i'm guessing that britney just couldn't stand the stink (i have no doubt about the veracity of this item...i mean, really, just look at him). which is saying something because i imagine with her embrace of the trailer lifestyle, she can't smell too great either (unlike say...scarlett johanson who i'm pretty sure always smells like fresh cut flowers). in any case, if this is true, then things are progressing nicely for britney spears to fulfill her destiny and show us all her naughty bits in the pages of playboy before the end of 2005.

tell me you don't think she smells like a dumpster. you can't, you simply just can't.

tell me you don't think she smells great. you can't, you simply just can't.

pedagogical note

there's an article on cnn.com about something that i've argued with many of my colleagues about. the article is about how some educators have stopped using red ink to grade papers. the rationale of course is that the color red is too negative, and that educators should use a color that is less associated with negativity and that color of choice that has emerged is purple.

this is...how can i put it lightly... COMPLETE HORSESHIT. seriously, think about what the teachers are doing, they are saying, "yes, certain colors do have intrinsic properties that are real and valid". in other words, you can tell what someone means by some physical phenomenon that is seemingly completely unrelated to the substantive phenomenon. whenever one of my colleagues feeds me this b.s., i like to tell them, "you know what you're right. we should also stop using black people for anything since black is affiliated with evil." they'll argue that it's different, but it's the same goddammed thing. people are inbueing colors with natural properties that are completely socially constructed. the same way that racists inbue skin phenotype with natural properties that are completely socially constructed.

because of this, i intentionally use a red pen whenever i have to grade something. if a student has a problem with red, i figure that the problem is with the student and not with the color red. should i also stop wearing red shirts to class because of the negativity associated with it? the other more rational reason, the reason why i'm sure that red was used in the first place, was that students could more easily locate the feedback that the educator has for them. since most assignments are done in black or blue ink, if your comments are in black or blue it will be harder for the student to find.

one final thing for my argument for red ink in grading. i don't necessarily disagree with the idea that red ink can be translated as being more negative by students. i know what it's like to get a paper that looks like someone slit their wrists over it. social processes are complicated, and one thing we know for sure is that over time, people can be convinced that a socially constructed phenomenon is a real one. i'm all for being more positive in my pedagogical style, but at the same time, most of the time, i am being negative about the quality of the student's work while using red ink. i do think we've become too sensitive about how we educate and treat children as if they're eggs with fragile little psyches that need to be protected at all times (obviously, the academic discipline of psychology is responsible for this). like anabolic steroids, if used correctly, a little red ink and negative feedback can induce the desired result of students learning and taking responsiblity for their actions. what i'm saying is that yes, sometimes trying your best isn't good enough. the point of teaching is for students to master concepts and apply them, not to make them feel better about themselves.

an open letter to the kids from acton massachussetts

this is a little late, since the story came out last week, but some fifth graders from acton massachussetts are calling for the yankees and red sox to bury their rivalry and shake hands on the field. the claim is that it would promote sportsmanship for kids. i'd like for them to read the following letter.

hey kiddies, i've got some news for you. major leaguers don't give two craps about whether or not you learn sportsmanship. if they really believed in sportsmanship, then they wouldn't make as much money as they do. they make as much money as they do because they'll do whatever it takes to win, which by definition, is the opposite of sportsmanship. sure your teachers are encouraging you to pursue this, but then they're also going to teach you inherently racist and sexist histories that will in turn cause you to perpetuate these societal ills for years to come. not very sportsmanlike, i'd say. also, you might notice that your teachers are milking the spotlight and professional athletes and sports teams that make millions off of overcharging you for a declining (and in the case of baseball, tainted by steroids) product are pretending to care in order to get positive pub. in other words, they're promoting themselves by taking advantage of you.

and let's be honest. yankees fans and red sox fans are both really obnoxious jerks. they all think that they're better than us. yankees fans because they're able to buy good teams every year and red sox fans who think that sticking by a loser for so many years somehow translates into moral superiority. and you know what? no matter what you're dumbass teachers tell you, the world is not a worse off place because of them. if anything, it's a much funnier world.

although i suspect that most of your own reasons for participating in this very project are not very genuine. you are kids and like most kids you crave attention. i doubt very sincerely that you actually give two craps about sportsmanship yourself and you just want to find a way to get derek jeter's autograph. all this stuff about how kids are innocent is a bunch of bs. if kids were left to their own devices you don't think that they wouldn't steal/lie/cheat to acquire candy/toys. if you kids are so innocent, then why is school culture so shallow and materialistic?

my point here is not to try and stop you. you are what you are, and what i think probably won't reach you anyways, and even if it did, i doubt sincerely that you would take the time to see where i'm coming from. but i suspect everyone from your parents to local media pundits are telling you how great you are for doing this, and how you're doing the right thing. i just needed to let you know that you are making the claim that you are trying to do something that is morally right, when in fact, there can really be no moral claim either way, and what you're actually doing is simply trying to make yourself out to be some kind of great person. well, you're not. and in the ragin' asian's book, that makes you a bunch of douchebags. you heard me right, i just called a bunch of grade schoolers that i've never met a bunch of douchebags. welcome to real world kids, there's nothing sportsmanlike about it.

4.03.2005

adios pope

just in case you've managed to avoid any kind of media this weekend, the pop died this weekend (click here for a really creepy picture of the pope's body lying in wait). i guess it's always sad when someone dies, but really, even being a raised a catholic and everything, i really can't say that the pope has had any material or spiritual impact on my life. if anything, he was this cartoon representation of the catholic church. what really gets me about this whole thing is the scores of people who say that they are/were praying for the pope during his last hours. if you believe in heaven and if you're a catholic, then there can't be any doubt in your mind that the pope has a spot reserved in heaven with a covered parking space and everything. so my question is, what exactly are people praying for? cuz like i said, surely they can't think that they need to pray for god to have mercy on the pope's soul, can they? were they praying for the pope not to die? i guess, if it makes you feel better, then by all means, pray away. but as i've contended before, most of this stuff is just people asking god the eternal question, "what about me?"

on a related note, the pope was the last of the big three in fredo and mine's celebrity death watch game, the other two being ronald reagan and bob hope. they were the big three because for the last few years all three of them were basically on death's doorstep. so i think that we now need to come up with a new list of three celebrities that really should be the next to go. i can't think of anyone right now...maybe goerge bush sr., but from what i can tell he seems to be in decent health for a man his age...liz taylor maybe, or maybe she's too young to be there (or more importantly, she's really not a celebrity on the stature of bob hope, ronnie or the pope). anyways, if you guys have any ideas, please feel free to leave us suggestions by leaving a comment for this post. also please note that blogger has recently updated their comments section where you don't have to choose between leaving an anonymous comment or registering with blogger. the idea is that it will encourage people to leave more comments. so please please start leaving more comments.