Re: Speaking Of Which

1

sigh... the thrill is gone.


Posted by: bend | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:29 PM
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Well, she's still not dead, so there is that.


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:30 PM
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I was wondering what took you so long.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:31 PM
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You all oughta be ashamed.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:31 PM
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But wait, Harry's still underage right?


Posted by: bend | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:34 PM
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5: and he's gotten naked!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:35 PM
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Yeah, but everyone in the cheap seats was dissapointed


Posted by: bend | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:35 PM
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I don't see why B. is even trying any more.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:39 PM
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But wait, Harry's still underage right?

Nope, born in 1989.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:39 PM
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9: dude he must be underage, that's like ten years ag..o...

aw, dammit. Hate when that happens.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:40 PM
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My juvenile objects of idolization:

- Saffy from Absolutely Fabulous
- Margaret Yang from Rushmore
- ZZ Ziff from Salute Your Shorts
- Kelly Kapowski

That is all.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:41 PM
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peter, you'll be happy to know that I've never heard of any of those people. I did see Rushmore.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:44 PM
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She has an awesome armpit cavity.


Posted by: OPINIONATED AXILLIST | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:45 PM
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10: No. Fucking. Joke.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:46 PM
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You all oughta be ashamed.

Really. They should be discussing this.

max
['What?']


Posted by: max | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:46 PM
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15-- I seem to remember max being one of the submitters to 0rgan@unfogged.com way back then.


Posted by: Auto-banned | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:48 PM
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12: Margaret Yang is the chick at the public high school.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:50 PM
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15: that's the ideal length of the Emperor of China's nose, then?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:50 PM
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BTW, ogged, too bad you're posting here and not at the Michelle Shocked show at the Cafe du Nord.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:52 PM
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Josh, are you commenting from your phone from there?


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:53 PM
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I don't understand 19.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:53 PM
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Kelly Kapowski, my god of course! She should have done Showgirls instead Elizabeth Berkley. Then it would have been a hit!


Posted by: bend | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:54 PM
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Michelle Shocked?!?! grrr...


Posted by: water moccasin | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:54 PM
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Although, given 20, maybe I should.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:54 PM
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I loved "Short Sharp Shocked". The liner notes included the key each song was recorded in, to give us baby guitarists a little boost. No changes, just the key.


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:55 PM
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20: Sadly, I didn't realize until just now that the show was today.

21: Does no one read the archives anymore?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:55 PM
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Michelle Shocked?!?! grrr...

Is she still Christian now? I saw her perform once, with an atrocious Fiachna Ó Braonáin in support.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:56 PM
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link in 26 has a great picture of Leslie Nielsen in a wrestling outfit.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 9:57 PM
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I don't like Michelle Shocked.

She's not as bad as Leonard Cohen, but I'm not a fan.

I always used to confuse her with Concrete Blonde, who I don't like either.

I remember -- almost certainly incorrectly -- wishing she were more like Was Not Was.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:02 PM
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29: Not even "Anchorage"? You have no soul.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:08 PM
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I used to not like Michelle Shocked, but ten minutes ago I saw this video and now I do. It's been a conversion:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJq11taAJgY&feature=related

You have to stick with it for a bit.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:09 PM
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Oh, and I always liked Anchorage.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:10 PM
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33

Maybe I was confusing her with Kate Bush?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:12 PM
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Maybe I was confusing her with Kate Bush?

I don't think Michelle Shocked ever posed in a leotard.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:16 PM
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Maybe that's the problem.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:17 PM
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Okay okay I'll stop trolling she has a lovely voice.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:18 PM
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Not even "Anchorage"? You have no soul.

Another 20 year old song.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:19 PM
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The last few minutes of that link in 31...holy shit, she blows a large black gospel chorus off the stage. That's hard to do.

When other people don't rave about my links enough, I do it for them. Full service!


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:26 PM
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Another 20 year old song.

Bastard.

(Fuck, we're as far from when that song was released as that song was from "Hey Jude".)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:39 PM
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If you see what I mean.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:39 PM
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Yes, but "Anchorage" was as far from "Hey Jude" as "Hey Jude" was from hit songs like this. Now that's a sea change.


Posted by: Fatman | Link to this comment | 04-17-08 10:59 PM
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42

What's it like to be a skateboard punk rocker, Josh?


Posted by: Wrongshore | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 1:08 AM
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I have found a column much better than "Modern Love".


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 1:32 AM
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re: 43

That's quite special.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 2:41 AM
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43: Wow, the columnist recommends that she talk to her boss about having gone braless outside of work. No, that won't be awkward at all.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 2:57 AM
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If anyone thinks it's awesome to go to a 22 inning baseball game, no, it's not.


Posted by: Klug | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 3:03 AM
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No, that won't be awkward at all.

Yeha, on what planet would a boss admit to treating her different? "Why yes, I have been treating you different since I saw your ample titties bouncing around the movie theater."


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 3:08 AM
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"Tell her you only dressed as you did for your husband" ... because you have no mind of your own?

That said, reading that letter made me seriously wonder why any woman would want large breasts. Seems like such a hassle.


Posted by: di kotimy | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 5:27 AM
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I liked the comment about how things have changed since the sixties. "Sure, kids these days get tattooed, pierced, and dye their hair funny colors, but at least the little trollops don't go out without appropriate foundation undergarments. I bet you weren't wearing a girdle either. Whore."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 5:37 AM
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What I really miss about the 1990s, apart from the whole peace and prosperity thing and non-insane people being in charge of the U.S. government, was the fad (especially pronounced in the countries in which I then lived) for small-breasted women to go bra-less in sheer blouses. You think if the Democrats retake the White House that might come back around again? 'Cause I really, really miss that.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 5:39 AM
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Q.: My breasts bounce slightly, but they do not sag or flop.

A.: You are not a child at 31.

Quite a find.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 5:42 AM
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(Fuck, we're as far from when that song was released as that song was from "Hey Jude".)

This has become my favorite way of thinking about recent history. 2000 happened to be a big dividing line for me personally and career-wise, so I tend to think of it as a somehow-recent landmark, but, of course, it's now 8 years ago. 8 years before that, I was still dating my HS girlfriend, was a practicing Catholic, etc.

On the music, there's the fact that Nevermind was 17 yrs ago; 17 yrs before that was Houses of the Holy. Paul's Boutique is halfway from here to Rapper's Delight (I think - I can't bother with the research).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:14 AM
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Here's my two:

Gulf War I is as remote to today's college students as Vietnam was to my generation; Vietnam is as remote to today's generation of college students as WWII was to mine.

The positive side of this is that no one under the age of 30 associates living under a Republican administration with anything other than GWB. We really need to hang that fucker around the GOP's neck like they did with the Dems and Carter.

BTW, did you ever see the news article about the kid, now fully grown, who was pictured as a baby on the cover of Nevermind?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:26 AM
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from hit songs like this. Now that's a sea change.

No way that was a hit song. Tell me that was never a hit song.

If anyone thinks it's awesome to go to a 22 inning baseball game, no, it's not.

You're not supposed to *stay*. 9 innings is trial enough.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:29 AM
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Paul's Boutique is halfway from here to Rapper's Delight (I think - I can't bother with the research).

Surely not. Paul's Boutique was 89. So, 19 years ago. 19 years before Paul's Boutique the Temptations were doing 'Ball of Confusion' and Sly and The Family Stone 'Thank You (falletinme, etc.)'.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:32 AM
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Why did I think Paul's Boutique was ~'93? I guess because that's when my good college friend started raving about it. But I was quite sure it was new at the time.

Weird.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:36 AM
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Even weirder, now that I think about it, is that my best friend in HS was an early adapter of rap (as far as white kids from suburban NJ go). But I guess he'd kind of flipped to classic rock by the summer of '89. Bad timing there.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:40 AM
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An alternate explanation is simply that I posted comment 52 in 1999.

Stupid slow server!


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 6:41 AM
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although the woman, the advice columnist and the boss in the column linked in 43 all come across quite badly, the real villain of the piece is surely the husband, who seems quite creepy.


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 7:31 AM
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Nevermind was 17 yrs ago

This has completely ruined my day. Probably my weekend, too.


Posted by: Brock Landers | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 7:43 AM
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59: You really want to keep talking about the O. Henry heiress, don't you.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 7:46 AM
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This has completely ruined my day. Probably my weekend, too.

John Gruber recently posted a photo on his flickr site of a bus in Philly advertising an classic rock/oldies radio station, listing Nirvana as one of the bands they gave a lot of air time to.

Just remember, the typical college freshman this year is the same age as you were when you started college, and relates to Kurt Cobain the same way you related to Jim Morrison.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 7:55 AM
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When I started at LCCC I kept an informal list of all the band t-shirts the kids were wearing. I was surprised at the popularity Nirvana gear, amongst both men and women.

I periodically get the urge to tell students "you know I saw them twice before they were famous and twice afterwards." But I don't think that will really get me any cred.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 7:59 AM
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Also, since I am a feminist moralizer like B, I will say that I have been celebrating, rather than mourning, the fact that Hermione is now legally hot.

When they announced her birthday on NPR I said quite loudly "oh, hey!" and Molly said "Quit it!"

Did you know the phrase "legally hot" only gets 1,190 hits on google. I would have thought this a more popular concept.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:02 AM
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Just remember, the typical college freshman this year is the same age as you were when you started college, and relates to Kurt Cobain the same way you related to Jim Morrison.

It's better to burn out than to fade away.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:04 AM
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66

My crush on Hermione wore off after the 1st movie.


Posted by: Anderson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:04 AM
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KISS's first album was released 35 (!) years ago. 35 years before that, the #1 song in the country was "Whistle While You Work" from the Snow White movie and "Thanks for the Memory" by Bob Hope.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:05 AM
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63: doesn't surprise me. I venture there was no shortage of Zeppelin shirts when you went to college.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:07 AM
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Pwned'y pwned'y pwned.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:08 AM
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The Beatles released Love Me Do in 1962. 46 years before that was the year before the ODJB made their first record. This can get silly.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:09 AM
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This can get silly.

Well, we certainly can't have that.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:11 AM
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ODJB

?

Whoever they were, it was 91 fucking years ago, and I feel no shame at not knowing.

Old D* Jazz Band?

Ol' Dirty Jazz Bastard?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:12 AM
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73

Original Dixieland Jazz Band. Don't believe a word of it.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:16 AM
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74

My crush on Hermione wore off after the 1st movie.

Anderson is John Derbyshire?


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:17 AM
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Actually, this is a slightly different game, but:

The entire history of rock n roll, from "Rock Around the CLock" going #1 to Led Zeppelin IV, fits between Nevermind and now.

You could make a pretty good argument that everything since then has been recycling (treating punk as a return to simplicity, although Nevermind the Bollocks doesn't sound very much like "Maybellene").

17 years on from "Rapper's Delight" gets you to 1996; I don't think that captures a complete evolutionary cycle, but it's arguably close. What do the kids think?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:22 AM
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WWI to me is like WWII is to you guys. To me, Chryssie Hynde is an up and coming young thing.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:22 AM
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73: Ah, yes. I knew that I'd recognize the band when it came out, just not the initials.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:23 AM
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78

And it was only 258 years ago that Bach died!

And only a million years ago one of our hominid ancestors bested a rival for the affections of a female by banging rhythmically on a log in a way no hominid female could resist!


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:26 AM
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79

Someone had to follow up on 71.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:26 AM
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80

78.2: so sexist.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:28 AM
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WWI to me is like WWII is to you guys.

Whereas my father knew an old boy who used to refer to "The War", meaning the Crimea.


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:29 AM
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The entire history of rock n roll, from "Rock Around the CLock" going #1 to Led Zeppelin IV, fits between Nevermind and now.

JRoth wins the thread.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:31 AM
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I'm a sucker for "Dennis Eckersley pitched to Willie Mays who hit off Abner Doubleday" style connections back. IIRC, the actual one using Eckersley got back to the 1869 Reds in something like 8 steps, using almost exclusively people you've heard of (since they're the ones with the longest careers).

Actually, I think LG&M recently cited some line that was current around 1960 - some SC justice had shaken hands with a young JFK as well as either Van Buren or JQAdams.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:36 AM
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75: I dunno I think New Wave and newer indie synth driven stuff kind of messes with your program.

Also hip-hop doesn't really fit because the change in sampling laws changed the nature of the beast so much. It would work if you took Planet Rock as your starting point, but nobody would buy it.

I almost got like super pedantic about the actual nature of the evolution of popular music and the importance of genre-crossing and so on, but then I realized that would be really, really lame.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:38 AM
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83: Holmes, I think.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:39 AM
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For about eight years I've heard people amazing each other by saying that John Tyler's grandson is still alive.

And he's still alive! In fact he's only 80.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:43 AM
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My 6 y.o. daughter is beginning to grasp the idea of chronology, but she doesn't have much of a concept of larger numbers. So I get a lot of questions along the lines of "Were the dinosaurs before the pirates?"

I can infer from her questions to date that she divides all cosmic history into seven major eras: the dinosaurs, the mammals, the pirates, the pilgrims, Laura & Mary (from Little House on the Prairie), the Boxcar Children, and today.

Also, the world is divided into [our town], Maui, France, Maine, Florida, and Africa (where all the interesting animals live).


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:47 AM
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I've been amazed recently at the thought that Richard Wagner's granddaughters are about to take over at Bayreuth.

And, damn, I would have thought that the Wagner family's control over Bayreuth might have been a good target for denazification.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:48 AM
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For about eight years I've heard people amazing each other by saying that John Tyler's grandson is still alive.

Yeah, I use this fact as an example in a class I teach.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:49 AM
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"Were the dinosaurs before the pirates?"

They defeated the pirates, but they did not precede them.

I wonder, if I ever have a child, if I'll be able to resist the temptation to fill their head with lies?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:49 AM
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My beloved three year old grandnephew knows three oceans: Pacific in Hawaii, Atlantic in Florida, and Wobegon in Minnesota.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:49 AM
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the Wagner family's control over Bayreuth might have been a good target for denazification

We let the Japanese keep the Emperor.


Posted by: Bave Dee | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:50 AM
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I would have thought that the Wagner family's control over Bayreuth might have been a good target for denazification

The Wagner descendants are not a monolithic entity. They are as fratricidal as the Pritzkers.

Anyway, there's enough reasons to dislike Wagner without blaming him for Hitler.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:51 AM
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resist the temptation to fill their head with lies?

I've found it's pretty easy not to take kids to church, Tweety.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:52 AM
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Why skimp? Wagner and Kant were responsible for Hitler.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:52 AM
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the change in sampling laws changed the nature of the beast so much.

I was totally thinking that, but I know so little about the genre that I decided to leave it be. Fucking IP rights.

I think New Wave and newer indie synth driven stuff kind of messes with your program.

I'm certainly not saying that nothing at all new has happened since the early 70s. But it seems to me that, by about that time, most of the new stuff was more or less conscious echoes of previous rock (whereas in those first 17-20 yrs, pre-rock and extra-rock influences were the norm). "Rock Lobster" sure as hell isn't "Not Fade Away," but the 50s vibe wasn't limited to the hairdos.

What's noteworthy (to me) isn't how much repetition happens post-1973; it's how little happened before. Was Sha-Na-Na (at Woodstock!) the first conscious retro act of the Rock Era?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:53 AM
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94: no, I meant fun lies. "Yes, dear, ships in bottles are made by little tiny shipwrights who are sealed in the bottle and must asphyxiate and rot away before the bottle can be sold."


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:55 AM
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Maybe Blue Cheer. They played generic R&R at super volumes.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:55 AM
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96: I think there have been intermittent cross-pollinations from dance music that are closely equivalent to the original crossover of R&B and blues into rock; that's how you get soloes, that's how you get horns, that's how you get synths, that's how you get the Stones disco album.

For all that I mock indie rock I do think that this decade has been one of very fertile cross-pollination of rock and other styles of music.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:57 AM
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able to resist the temptation to fill their head with lies?

As much as I always loved Calvin's father, I've never been tempted in the least. It's having this creature who begs to be filled from the bottomless springs of my Inner Pedant.

Rest assured, Sifu, your child will get like super pedantic about the actual nature of the evolution of popular music and the importance of genre-crossing and so on.

Teach your children well.

[Holy shit, we had to explain the concept of "dirty words" to Iris yesterday. I just sat back and waited to see how it played out. No worse than "What the hell," I'm pleased to report]


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:57 AM
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No, I'm not blaming Richard Wagner. His widow, however, was bad, bad news---and a close personal friend of Hitler, etc.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:57 AM
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intermittent cross-pollinations from dance music

Ah, very good. The Tree of Rock must be watered with the Blood of Disco.

But does anyone really dance to rap?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 8:59 AM
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Is 98 blaming Blue Cheer for Hitler? That seems unfair, not to mention anachronistic.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:00 AM
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But does anyone really dance to rap?

I believe we established that everyone except Ogged and Mary Catherine does so.


Posted by: Auto-banned | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:00 AM
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On the other hand, I think you make a valid point that it was basically impossible for rock to be retro until the late seventies; retrospective influences, in pop music, almost always date to right around 18 years in the past, since that's the earliest music that the kids making the retro can imagine, and it thus seems to them impossibly nostalgic. Thus it took until the late 90s for disco to make a comback, we should be seeing neo-grunge any day now, the Beatles were into skiffle when they were kids.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:00 AM
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The advice in the column is just crazy. Both the boob answer and the job answer.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:01 AM
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I dunno I think New Wave and newer indie synth driven stuff kind of messes with your program.

Not to mention Prog Rock (Yes, Genesis, and King Crimson all released albums in '69, but their famous stuff and most of the genre came after '71's IV), Shoegaze, and low-fi/jangley indie. Also, the whole quiet-loud dynamics coming from Pixies, etc. in the 80s and refined by the Louisville scene in the early 90s is pretty important in current rock music.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:01 AM
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108

I am very much tempted to make a craigslist ad using the ideal penis size chart.


Posted by: Michael | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:01 AM
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Was Sha-Na-Na (at Woodstock!) the first conscious retro act of the Rock Era?

Well they only formed in 1969 - what, seven years after the British invasion?

The Beatles themselves combined blues/r&B influences with the skiffle music of the previous decade and even music-hall numbers like "Ain't She Sweet".


Posted by: Auto-banned | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:02 AM
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107: and you really can't understand noise rock just looking at the history of rock; you have to include musique concrete and john cage in there to get a coherent picture.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:03 AM
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I wonder, if I ever have a child, if I'll be able to resist the temptation to fill their head with lies?

I struggle frequently with this, in a variety of forms.

1. Whether to pass on the sanitized version of historical events, or, more accurately, how to convey a more nuanced version without turning it into a radical critique of society. The tension between the Ingalls family and the Native Americans has provided a lot of fodder for this. In that case, I explained that the white people drove the Indians off their land, and this wasn't a nice thing to do. But it gets more complicated when you get questions like "Why is there war?"

2. How much to simplify scientific explanations. Here again, I err on the side of overcomplicating the answer to the point they can't understand rather than passing on any facile falsehoods. On the issue of unicorns, however, I have let matters rest at "No one has ever captured a unicorn, so there is no definitive proof that they exist."

3. Whether to honestly answer skeptical questions about Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. The 6 y.o. is clever enough to see through some of the inconsistencies in both of these tales ("But airplanes can fly over the North Pole, right?" "Yes." "So why can't they land there?" "There's no airport." "Couldn't they fly really low and take pictures?"). I feel bad teaching her falsehoods; on the other hand, the disenchantment that comes with growing up is not an unalloyed good. Also, I can't have her telling her younger sister that there's no Santa.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:03 AM
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I feel bad teaching her falsehoods; on the other hand, the disenchantment that comes with growing up is not an unalloyed good. Also, I can't have her telling her younger sister that there's no Santa.

What do you prefer, "Daddy says there's no Santa" or "There's no Santa, and Daddy is too dumb to realize it"?


Posted by: Auto-banned | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:04 AM
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How about "that's a good question, and nobody's quite sure why they haven't been able to find him"

Or!

"Don't tell your sister, honey, but Santa is an alien robot sent back through time to inure us to his presence, so we'll be unable to fight back when he attacks us with lasers and missiles."


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:07 AM
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111.3 Hasn't figured who Santa is by 6? Do you get them drunk on Christmas Eve, or what, that she hasn't caught you at it yet?


Posted by: OneFatEnglishman | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:07 AM
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I'm certainly not saying that nothing at all new has happened since the early 70s. But it seems to me that, by about that time, most of the new stuff was more or less conscious echoes of previous rock

yeah, throughout Kraftwerk's career, for example, you could see the influence of the R&B revue showband they started out as.

seriously, wtf?


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:08 AM
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Kraftwerk is rock and roll?

Anyway, JRoth is completely correct. Led Zeppelin IV was the final extrusion of rock's desiccated corpse. Then it was fini, and we all moved on.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:11 AM
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I'm-a take this history of rock-n-roll, and bring it back to the point.


Posted by: marichiweu | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:11 AM
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"Daddy says there's no Santa" or "There's no Santa, and Daddy is too dumb to realize it"

Being thought dumb is a small price to pay for the salutory effect on behavior from about Halloween until the end of the year.

I've found it's pretty easy not to take kids to church

Yeah, that's another issue. I have never suggested the literal truth of the bible, but I have told them about heaven and the afterlife because they have articulated fears about death and this is comforting to them (no one needs to chime in here with explanations of the origins of religion, OK?). But even this explanation is complicated by the fact that Fleur has offered them an alternative version involving reincarnation, and informed them that they are free to choose their own beliefs about what happens after death, because nobody really knows, anyway.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:11 AM
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115: as a matter of fact, Kraftwerk has said they were heavily influenced by James Brown.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:11 AM
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re: 116

Well, if you are talking about 'rock n roll' [hep, daddy-o] narrowly conceived, then, yeah.

But if you mean, "loud popular music" then, no.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:13 AM
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My father did tell us those kind of stories---like how he didn't swim in front of us because he only swam the Canadian Propeller Stroke, which was a secret that only full-blooded Canadians were allowed to know---but he wasn't really into the whole Santa Claus business and dropped enough clues early on that the transition into disbelief was imperceptibly gradual.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:17 AM
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Either it's not the case that the history of r'n'r goes from "Rock Around the Clock" to LZ IV because there is clearly rock, in the sense that Led Zeppelin were rock, after Led Zeppelin, or it's not the case because rock and roll, as a style distinct from "rock", was already over by the time of the latter album.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:17 AM
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My dad told me that when we were very young, like 0-3, he intentionally inculcated us with the notion that there was no god, so that it wouldn't be an issue later on.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:19 AM
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Then it was fini, and we all moved on.

Dude, that's why my band dedicate ourselves to combining and pushing the boundaries of barbershop and new jack swing. It's gonna blow up any day now!


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:21 AM
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Caroline and I have been having a great time reading Little Nemo in Slumberland, but I can't figure out how to talk to her about the character of The Jungle Imp. When he first appeared, I told her that he was a "not nice way to draw black people" and that this sort of thing was more common when Nemo was written. She basically ignored me and kept laughing at the comic.

Right now, she doesn't seem to associate The Imp with actual black people or actual people. He's just a fantastic creature. But I still want to emphasize to her how bad the image is. Is it worth it?


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:22 AM
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re: 122

Leaving aside the fact that r'n'r (however you want to conceive it) predates "Rock around the Clock" by a fair bit.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:23 AM
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124: don't make me trace a line from New Jack Swing through 2-step garage directly to dubstep. Don't make me!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:23 AM
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Also, the whole quiet-loud dynamics coming from Pixies

I almost mentioned this specific point in 96; the quiet-loud dynamic was first hailed when used by (wait for it) The Beatles. A reference would be nice, of course, but take it from me - people were talking about the contrast between, say "Oh yeah I/tell you something" and "I wanna hold your haaaand!" long before 1987. Did the Pixies do something more with it and make it their own? Of course. But they weren't the first rock band to get there.

Also, on prog: I would peg '73 as the actual end of the "generation" of original rock n roll; I stopped in '71 so it would fit in between now and Nevermind. But by '73 you've got Dark Side, Thick as a Brick, and all the evidence you need that prog had arrived. And the New York Dolls were 2 years old.

Kraftwerk: formed in 1970. So they're part of the first "generation" of rock. Which makes sense - they weren't exactly ex nihilo experimenting with Moogs and song forms outside 3 chords.

Anyway, I'm serious about not taking this idea too seriously. I don't think that nothing of musical interest happened post-1973. I just think that most of rock's basic directions had been established by then, with further, subsequent exploration following along those directions.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:24 AM
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Don't put rock-n-roll in a box, you square.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:25 AM
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But I still want to emphasize to her how bad the image is. Is it worth it?

I don't think so. If you set the right example in your every day dealings with people of other races, as I'm sure you do, exposure to racist caricatures is not going to make her a racist. If anything, drawing too much attention to blackness as the distinctive feature of the jungle imp might help solidify a racial category that is still only vague in her mind.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:26 AM
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I don't think that kids have the same definite notions about "truth" that overeducated adults do.

"Lots of people believe in Santa, who lives at the north pole" and "Mom + Dad bought these presents" are not contradictory unless someone pushes. I'm trying to stress the importance of truth and definite facts for statements about tangible things or statements attributable to someone definite. The elementary school succeeded to introduce a distinction between fiction and nonfiction, which was useful for talking about TV and especially commercials.

Whether abstractions or beliefs held by some nebulous polity are true or not doesn't matter much to kids, and can be kept peripheral until a particular kid develops an interest in abstract entities.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:26 AM
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101: Not wife, surely? During the war, I think Bayreuth was run by the wife of one of Richard's sons. Immediately after the war it was run by his grandsons. So now we are on great-grandchildren, I think.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:28 AM
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Also worth noting: Dispite my best efforts, Caroline has aquired the notion of "good guys" and "bad guys" and become obsessed with it. Worse, she has some ideas about racial catagories, and even once asked me if Indians were Bad Guys.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:29 AM
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Rob, I'm not sure how much it's worth it. After all, you two are having a good time reading the book; if the moral point were so important, maybe you shouldn't let her read it?

I remember that my grandmother had a "little black Sambo" book at her house when I was a kid. Looking back on it, I think my mom said something about its racism at the time. Hey, wait, I'll bet my grandma still has that book in the kids' toy room! I wonder how my sisters and cousins are dealing with having their kids run across it.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:30 AM
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122: What are you talking about, Ben? I didn't say that rock ended in 1973; my point is that that's when it started recycling itself.

Ah, I see now that my phrase "entire history of rock n roll" was infelicitous. I was attempting by that phrase to emphasize the enormity of sonic distance between "Rock Around the Clock" and "Rock and Roll." I didn't mean that those 16 years constituted the entire history of rock n roll (my mom would argue that the Beatles killed rock n roll with Sgt. Pepper's, if not sooner).

This is also my reply to 124.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:31 AM
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Also intersting (to me) Caroline undertands that some people think that god is "in real life" and that other people, including her dad, don't. But she doesn't seem to clearly distinguish between real religions and the made up religion of The Users in the movie Tron, which she has become obsessed with.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:32 AM
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127: Sing it!

Though seriously, apart from the vague rhythmic similarities and the shared artists/scene, I've never really gotten the supposed extremely close relationship between bright n' happy 2-Step and the much darker genres of heavy duty Jungle, Grime and Dubstep. They seem to come from such totally different sensibilities and have pretty different sonic palettes; I think people really overemphasize how closely related they are.

128: Damn Beatles, getting to decent ideas early. I mean, yeah, dynamic range existed before the Pixies, but I do think that bands like them and Slint did new things with it, took it to new extremes, and have been a greater influence on newer bands.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:32 AM
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132: Ah, yes. It was Winifred Wagner (wife of Richard's son Siegfried) who was hanging with Hitler. Cosima was dead by 1930.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:32 AM
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Not worth it. I grew up with the Uncle Remus books (which are great stories, you haters) and managed not to turn out racist.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:33 AM
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I had "Little Black Sambo". I saw the characters as being caricatures of black people. There were other children's books containing caricatures of white people. If they aren't being presented as stereotypically dumb or primitive, who cares about the images alone?


Posted by: Auto-banned | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:33 AM
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This discussion is so entertainingly pointless, I think I will try and divert it: lately, when considered academic specialties, I have a tendency to refer to them in my head as "genres". My question, then, given that we've just had a long conversation hinging on the largely-pointless wankiness of defining music according to "genres": is defining intellectual endeavor in terms of "academic specialties" more or less pernicious?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:34 AM
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No, Hitler was to blame for Blue Cheer. But by the time they came around, there was no longer any way that he could be punished.


Posted by: John Emerson | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:35 AM
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Ok, one last comment and I will do some work:

Little Nemo in Slumberland is the most beautiful comic *ever* and Windsor McCay is a fucking graphic genius.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:35 AM
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is defining intellectual endeavor in terms of "academic specialties" more or less pernicious?

Br'er Rabbit says "More!"


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:35 AM
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Caroline has aquired the notion of "good guys" and "bad guys" and become obsessed with it. Worse, she has some ideas about racial catagories, and even once asked me if Indians were Bad Guys.

I'm dealing with this as well. I have found these discussions a useful way of introducing a positive discussion about race. In the course of explaining that the Indians were people like you and me, just with different customs and different color skin, one of the daughters said "Just like [pet name for her grandfather] has brown skin and we have white skin!" And the other chimed in with "And [au pair's name] has brown skin!" I had to hug them on the spot. (FWIW, we live in a lilly white suburb, so the kinds of insights that might seem obvious to folks in more diverse environments are not so much for us.)


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:35 AM
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Though seriously, apart from the vague rhythmic similarities and the shared artists/scene, I've never really gotten the supposed extremely close relationship between bright n' happy 2-Step and the much darker genres of heavy duty Jungle, Grime and Dubstep. They seem to come from such totally different sensibilities and have pretty different sonic palettes; I think people really overemphasize how closely related they are.

Even if you listen to early 2-step (like early Craig David) it'll drop out of the pretty garage-y vocal parts and into deep, very jungle-influenced dubby bass grooves. But the actual similarity to dubstep -- and it's anything but minor -- is in the beat. Soul II Soul adopted the wildly syncopated eighth note hi-hats from New Jack Swing, and this syncopation -- very different than breakbeat, which has the eighths on the beat -- forms the core of both the 2-step and the dubstep beat.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:37 AM
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139: They are indeed! The Julius Lester re-tellings are wonderful -- and the stories aren't racist. Harris' rendering of dialect is insoutenable and the framing device of happy black slave tellin' tales to cherubic white children is obviously out, too.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:37 AM
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if Indians were Bad Guys
in my childhood i remember i loved Chingachgook


Posted by: read | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:38 AM
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Indians were Bad Guys

Quanah Parker? It's a toughie-- kids are interested in skin color, no question, and telling them to ignore it is no good. Explaining that skin color is only skin deep seems to work pretty for mine, and to cover that people living in different environments have really different styles of life. Early eskimos lived in igloos and so on.

Maybe I'm lucky because his school is plenty diverse and there's no stratification about which kids are nice to each other or not so far, so he'll come out OK if he ignores everything said at home or on TV. Quanah Parker is a pretty good story, though.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:38 AM
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"Just like Grampa Sambo has brown skin and we have white skin!"


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:38 AM
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132.---Cosima Wagner, Richard's second or third wife, was much younger. She was the one who gathered an antisemitic group around Bayreuth.

Looking in my Third Reich in Power... ah, ok, the festival was run by Winifred Wagner, Richard's "English daughter-in-law," who "became something very like cultural royalty" in the 3rd Reich (Evans 200). Maybe her husband Siegfried was from Wagner's earlier marriage.

I don't know what the postwar history of Bayreuth looks like, but there was all kinds of press this last week about there having been achieved a power-sharing agreement between two Wagner grand-daughters (or great-grand-daughters).


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:39 AM
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I can't remember if I mentioned this here, but, as of January '07, when she was 2.5, Iris could have told you all about Athena and the Green Man, but not a thing about Jesus.

She's now aware of Jesus (thanks to his role in Xmas, of course, which is, to her, secondary to Joseph & Mary's), but confused by references to "God." She knows about gods and goddesses, but doesn't know what to make of a statement like "I told God I was done with him."*

She gets the less sanitized version of history mostly when "Pocahontas" is pissing me off ("Did the movie include where she married another man, then moved to England and died? How about when the Englishmen stole all the land and killed all of Pocahontas' people?"). Despite our best efforts, these things have seeped into our home. Grumble.

* Thanks, This American Life


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:40 AM
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So pwned.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:40 AM
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141: Less. Meaningful new music can be done completely from scratch, using sounds and sensibilities that happen to be associated with a number of pre-existing genres. Meaningful new academic research is much more difficult to do without a knowledge of a large pre-existing body of knowledge, to know where you can even start to build something new in a rigorous way.

If, in order to even start creating a house record that contributed anything new, you had to listen to everything from Trax Records through the KLF and Chemical Brothers into Daft Punk and Justice along with all the material in between, then genres might be as significant for music as they tend to be for academics.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:41 AM
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Little Nemo in Slumberland is the most beautiful comic *ever* and Windsor McCay is a fucking graphic genius.

I got rfts the oversized/broadsheet-format Sunday Press reprint for Christmas. Wow, is it fantastic.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:43 AM
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If, in order to even start creating a house record that contributed anything new, you had to listen to everything from Trax Records through the KLF and Chemical Brothers into Daft Punk and Justice along with all the material in between, then genres might be as significant for music as they tend to be for academics.

It couldn't hurt; I don't know, however that "contributing anything new" is actually the goal of anybody making a house record, unless by "new" you mean "has not actually existed previously in its exact form, or if it has, we still think people will buy it."


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:44 AM
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broadsheet-format Sunday Press

Fantastic amen.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:44 AM
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I loved the B'rer FoX and B'rer Rabbit stories as a kid, and since the edition we had didn't use the Uncle Rebus framing story, I've never quite understood on an emotional level what the cultural debate about its racism is. For me it was always a sort of Bugs Bunny story, but with a little more wild violence----it's like the Grimm brothers' stories in that respect: people really get hurt and killed.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:47 AM
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Maybe I'm lucky because his school is plenty diverse and there's no stratification about which kids are nice to each other or not so far,

Because it will start in 6th grade.

I feel strongly that it's not the conversations you have with your elementary age children, but the conversations you have with your middle school and high school kids.

Everything I thought I knew about race and people happily getting along with the whole rainbow, rang really hollow and false when I got to middle school.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:49 AM
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Caroline has aquired the notion of "good guys" and "bad guys" and become obsessed with it.

A couple kids I babysit are obsessed with this, too. Bad guys are bad, and you can kill them with swords. Killing good guys with swords is right out.

rob, unless Caroline's making the association, I'd probably say nothing, if the book is otherwise worthy. (Of course, I don't have kids, etc.) Because chances are, it's a little bit over her head at this point, and by the time it isn't, she'll be taking her cues from lots of other things besides the book, and will ask you questions, like she does about the Indians.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:49 AM
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128: The Beatles and the Pixies were pikers at the "quiet loud dynamic" -- Haydn's Surprise Symphony -- now there's some variation in volume!

I also associate this with a few Who songs "Behind Blue Eyes" and "The Bargain"... maybe some stuff in Quadrophenia.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:50 AM
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defining intellectual endeavor in terms of "academic specialties" more or less pernicious

University departments and government funding offices are less easy to rearrange than the tabs on record bins.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:55 AM
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Everything I thought I knew about race and people happily getting along with the whole rainbow, rang really hollow and false when I got to middle school.

Oh god yes.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:55 AM
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156: Yeah, true. But do you see what I mean about people really being able to create new, meaningful music from scratch much more easily than an academician could produce new, meaningful ideas from scratch?

I think music can be meaningful in a vacuum, while most research relies upon connections with pre-existing ideas for its significance.

Also, thanks for 146, I've never noticed that high-hat similarity in the past. The only rhythmic connection I really noticed was dubstep's sub-bass patterns that boom on the first-beat and then somewhere around the third resembling the kickdrum patterns in 2-step (though I've listened to tragically little 2-step, so that's mostly ex recto).


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 9:59 AM
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Everything I thought I knew about race and people happily getting along with the whole rainbow, rang really hollow and false when I got to middle school.

Huh. Not my experience at all. In the Miami school system, there was busing throughout (all the white kids got bused to 6th grade in a black neighborhood, which was weird).

Maybe (probably) I was just being clueless, but of course if it wasn't stark enough for me to notice, it couldn't have been that big of a change. There was probably gradually increasing racial separation/disharmony, but there's increasing disharmony at all levels of MS and HS (the jocks and geeks don't generally form separate tribes in 3rd grade).


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:02 AM
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Actually, it's pretty well documented that race relations head south in 6th grade. Why are all the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?" does a really good job of unpacking the changes that are going on at that age in kids' lives.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:05 AM
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Little Nemo in Slumberland is the most beautiful comic *ever* and Windsor McCay is a fucking graphic genius.

Amen to that. The test footage, by Yoshifumi Kondo, for the might-have-been-great Nemo movie is amazing, too. (More here.)


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:07 AM
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164: yeah I see your point. If I hadn't, I would have responded substantively.

I do think there's an interesting parallel, especially when you're talking about newer-school specialties (looking at you, Comp-Lit and cognitive science) to want to create a coherent intellectual narrative of why things are one specialty or another when the fact is that people should be reading more widely outside of their fields in any case.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:08 AM
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Addendum to 168: I actually don't think music can be meaningful in a vacuum, but that popular music has the Markov property to a greater degree than academic pursuits do, where implicit borrowing and referencing is not welcome.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:10 AM
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166: Interesting. The friend I recall most distinctly from 6th grade was a black kid; it's possible that he's skewing my sense of what else was happening (I don't recall precisely, but I'd say classes were ~20% black? So being close to one black kid and 3 white ones would seem about right).

I actually still recall a pretty good column in my college newspaper explaining why the black students hung out together (CMU, far, far less than 20% black). I also recall feeling very excluded by some of the Asian students; I was very fond of one of my classmates (Platonically), but it was clear that her Asian friends viewed me with suspicion at best.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:12 AM
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From 2nd-4th grade, I attended a school that was ~90% black. When we moved to Durham the summer before I entered the 5th grade, we ended up in the county school system, which was ~70/30 white/black (city schools in Durham were >90% black).

The systems have since been merged, but now that Keegan is in Durham schools, the mix looks more like 40/40/20 white, black, latino. The latter category barely existed when I went through.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:19 AM
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According to that book, middle school is when minority kids start seeking out kids from their own minority, because they are becoming aware of the complexity of their other-status, and commonly want to be near other kids who are dealing with the same thing, and exploring what it means to be a member of whatever group they are.

The white kids resent being rejected, both on an individual level - "Why is my friend sitting over there now with those other kids?" and on a cultural level "Why don't they act normal (mainstream/white) like they used to?"

Tensions brew.

I remember feeling like everyone was friends in 5th grade, and then in 6th grade, the black kids formed their own group. And they behaved differently, and I was a judgemental little jerk.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:23 AM
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I remember feeling like everyone was friends in 5th grade, and then in 6th grade, the black kids formed their own group. And they behaved differently, and I was a judgemental little jerk.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:25 AM
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Boy I thought for sure my "academic specialties: as pointless as music genres!" bait would get some action, but no. Where's B?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:48 AM
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Interesting, heebie.

My middle school and high school both had exactly one black student, one Asian student, and zero Hispanic students when I was there. Forced assimilation!


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:52 AM
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Forced assimilation!

Whaddya mean? Didn't all the black kids always sit together? Same with the Asians. And the Hispanics - did they ever sit at your table? Why do you think that was?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 10:58 AM
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No, the one black kid didn't sit together, he sat with the white kids. And Asians are white kids.


Posted by: peter | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:00 AM
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If he didn't sit together then he sat apart, peter.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:02 AM
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I always avoid other Iranians. I don't want my specialness diluted.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:02 AM
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Never mix never worry.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:05 AM
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I always avoid other Iranians.

I thought they avoided you, because you were a Lur and not a proper Persian.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:06 AM
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Kraftwerk: formed in 1970. So they're part of the first "generation" of rock.

As are Jethro Tull, Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Yes, Genesis, and all those other bands you just said weren't, since they were formed before that.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:07 AM
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But musical genre isn't pointless, Sifu, try as JRoth might to make it seem so.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:09 AM
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I think I'm at risk of turning into the uncle with early stage dementia who always repeats his stories 1,000 times, so I beg your forbearance if I have commented about his before.

In my class, there was exactly one black kid, and he among the dumbest and laziest individuals I have ever known. This wasn't the best reinforcement for all the pieties about racial equality we got in class.

Also, the only Jew in my town was a legendary skinflint. And the only Roman Catholic family had a passel of children.

Maybe they were all deliberately placed there by the Committee for the Intergenerational Transmission of Ethnic Stereotypes.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:12 AM
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183: not pointless, then, but pernicious, because it creates a false sense of tribal identity and prevents people from understanding their own place in the broader musical history.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:13 AM
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184: It doesn't help that young children seem to be obsessed with classifying and categorizing things. Things can become 'boy things' or 'girl things' just because, e.g., the dad enjoys tea and the mother prefers coffee.


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:16 AM
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Knecht, in your youth were you neighbors with Norman Rockwell, or something?


Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:17 AM
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187: No, but Walker Evans was our school portrait photographer.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:20 AM
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182: No, I think all of those bands are part of the first "generation" - prog rock was neither echoing nor evoking any prior phase of rock n roll.

As I've said a couple times now, 1971 came from the Nevermind=>present period; I would date the end of the original rock n roll generation somewhere around 1973, which captures prog, early industrial/electronica, as well as the very beginnings of punk (there's overlap, naturally).

To repeat myself:

I would peg '73 as the actual end of the "generation" of original rock n roll; I stopped in '71 so it would fit in between now and Nevermind. But by '73 you've got Dark Side, Thick as a Brick, and all the evidence you need that prog had arrived.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:21 AM
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From 2nd-4th grade, I attended a school that was ~90% black.

I had something similar, although as a military brat, up until 7th grade, my schools were just highly integrated. Families moved often enough that cliques didn't really form in any one place, and my friends were from all over the spectrum: black, white, filipino, Irish ... (one was just as likely to notice that someone was Irish or German or whatever as black -- the accent, you know).

Civilian life, from 7th grade on, was completely bewildering. These kids had known each other since kindergarten! They identified by socioeconomic class! They bore mysterious resentments toward one another! The only black kids in town were the twin girls in high school who made it their task to come after me during dodgeball. wtf?


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:27 AM
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Also, I'm not sure why you think I'm arguing that genre is pointless. I'm not a genreclast. I'm not saying that the Pixies are the same as the Beatles, just that they're mining a seam that had already been prospected.

"Rock" has come to be defined pretty broadly, so you'll get examples of bands that clearly did do utterly new things yet are considered part of Rock. But I believe those bands are the exception, and that most others are either digging deeper, or leaving the Rock field altogether (I'm not sure there's any meaningful way to include Spears-type pop in Rock, unless you define Rock as "youth music produced after 1955").

Some bands that incorporate hip-hop influences are still recognizably Rock; others are probably doing something different (certain Beasties songs are clearly Rock; others are clearly not).

Anyway, my general position on genre is that it's useful and meaningful, but shouldn't be considered definitive or restrictive. I mentioned this just a week or so ago, in who knows what context. I think that, especially in our current musical environment, the only listeners restricted by genre boundaries are ones who aren't really interested in expanding their horizons anyway.

Also, Lite Jazz is clearly the best genre.


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:31 AM
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It's having this creature who begs to be filled from the bottomless springs of my Inner Pedant.

I CANNOT WAIT. Learn to speak English, little guy. Then it's on.


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 11:37 AM
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Also, I'm not sure why you think I'm arguing that genre is pointless.

I meant to be rather more insulting than that, but now I regret it.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 2:48 PM
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Everything I thought I knew about race and people happily getting along with the whole rainbow, rang really hollow and false when I got to middle school.

Yeah; luckily I was mostly on the right side of those fights, b/c my parents put me in the bilingual program rather than the honors one. Yay my parents! (Also, I am down with the gente.)

Re. lying to kids: sure, you'll tell your kids hilarious lies. But you do it in a tone of voice that has a little wink in it, so they *kind* of know that it's not really for real true. And when they start asking skeptical questions about Santa, you say "huh, that's a good question, I don't know."


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 04-18-08 3:15 PM
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Breaking Hermione news:

"Harry Potter" heroine Emma Watson is attached to star in the period romance "Napoleon and Betsy," replacing Scarlett Johansson who was deemed too old for the role.

Watson, 18, will play Betsy Balcombe, a young, impetuous noblewoman trapped on the isolated British island of St. Helena who falls in love with Napoleon, who has been exiled there.

No word in the story on whether there will be full frontal nudity.


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-19-08 6:42 AM
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When they start asking skeptical questions about Santa, you say "huh, that's a good question, I don't know."

And give up the aura of awe-inspiring omniscience I have cultivated so carefully with my children? Surely you've seen enough of my comments in this forum to know that I would never voluntarily acknowledge ignorance of anything, especially not to an audience that isn't in a position to assess the truth value of my assertions.

This is going to start to become problematic long about the time they get to high school calculus: "The antiderivative of cosine x? Well, uh, yeah, uh...Hey, didn't I hear you coming home after midnight last night?"


Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 04-19-08 6:55 AM
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I learned early on -- in elementary school -- about racial tensions. In fourth grade this black kid tried to organize a race riot (we'll kill all the whities tomorrow! You better not come in if you're a whitey!). Nothing much came of it, though. I remember him as being lively, energetic, and not unintelligent.

I saw him again after some years when he was applying for a job at a fast food place I was working at the summer before college. He needed my help filling out the app, because he was illiterate.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 04-19-08 7:25 AM
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No word in the story on whether there will be full frontal nudity.

There will be... in my mind.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-19-08 7:36 AM
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Well, that didn't take long.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 04-21-08 9:49 AM
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Kobe has the power to read your thoughts, apo.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 04-21-08 9:50 AM
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