We Were Told Two-to-Four Inches!

January 21, 2014 at 11:30pm • One comment

Snowy balcony

Ben Zimmer at Slate tries to find the origin of the idiom “screw the pooch”:

Whether the action was feeding, walking, or fornicating, though, all of these early examples were used to mean “to loaf around” or “to waste time” (dogs have often been associated with laziness, as in the expression “dogging it”). Later on, possibly around World War II, “fucking the dog” and its euphemistic equivalents took on a secondary meaning of “blundering.”

I need to use that one more often.

Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.

— Ernest Hemingway

Pablo Maurer at Gothamist gives us a photo gallery of an abandoned resort in the Catskills.

Much of the resort has been demolished; what’s left has been thoroughly picked through over the years. The cabins and cottages that dot the grounds are unsafe to enter, their floors badly rotted, their roofs a deluge of splintered wood. Nobody is home at the Jennie J hotel, which has been thoroughly torn apart. Every bit of copper and steel plucked from its walls, every bathroom smashed apart.

I’m not sure what it says about me as a person, but I absolutely love destruction porn.

The NYC MTA MetroCard is 20 years old today.

Customers, who for decades had simply dropped a token into the slot on top of the turnstile, had to familiarize themselves with a new method of entry.  Using the MetroCard required riders to master the swipe.  Not too slow, not too fast and don’t lift too early.  Some likened it to delivering a punch to the gut.

After 20 years I still can’t swipe correctly when a train is in or entering the station. Works every time when there’s no train nearby. Typical.

Speaking of the NYC subway, here’s a slow-mo movie of the people standing on the platform while a train is entering the station.

To celebrate their 25th anniversary, LEGO will introduce a The Simpsons set in February, and there will be a LEGO themed episode of The Simpsons in May.

The Simpsons House has been turned into LEGO bricks with detachable roof, modular design, car with dent, the famous family couch, 6 minifigures and so much more…

The set looks amazing; so many elements. However, as a friend pointed out, it looks like Lisa’s saxophone didn’t make it, which is weird since they’ve made a sax for the “Saxophone Player” minifig.

To “celebrate” the 25th anniversary of the movie Major League, Topps will produce baseball cards of the fictitious players from the movie.

That’s right, stars of the 1989 movie Major League will be among those signing for the product — cards styled with the 1989 Topps design and with character names and studio licensing that allows for use of the film’s logo as well as images as it celebrates its 25th anniversary. So far, Tom Berenger and Corbin Bernsen have signed on for this one. (Could past Topps signer Charlie Sheen be far behind?)

I hope Jobu gets a card.

Dogs in Cars showcases photos of…wait for it…dogs in cars, by photographer Lara Jo Regan.

IS THERE A DOG OWNER IN THE WORLD who does not delight in the delirium of their four-legged friend on a car ride?

Our website aims to spread the infectious happiness of dogs in cars by showcasing the best art, photography, video and stories relating to the topic.

As someone who’s dog was deathly afraid of cars, seeing such enthusiasm is just too cute.

The Orange County Register informs us that hotel mini-bars may be on their way out.

Never a huge money-maker due to chronic petty larceny and the high labor costs of monitoring and restocking liquor supplies, the mini-bar has become largely an after-thought in an age when fast-moving travelers care more about technology and connecting in inviting public spaces, says Mike Hall, general manager of the Westin South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa.

I’m fairly certain I’ve never used a mini-bar, but I do enjoy perusing the menu and laughing at the prices.

Weather DEFCON

January 3, 2014 at 11:00pm • One comment

NYC has had its share of interesting weather the last few years, including a major hurricane, minor hurricane, and various levels of nor’easters and blizzards. During each of these weather phenomena I’ve noticed that the intensity of the impending weather can be matched to the level of dress of the local TV weathermen shortly before the storm hits the area.

I am therefore proposing a Weather DEFCON system. The system would need to be adjusted to various climates, but I think the following would work for the North East United States:

DEFCON 5 — Weatherman wearing a suit and tie — Good to average weather.

DEFCON 4 — Weatherman has removed suit jacket but sleeves are buttoned and tie is tight against collar — Slightly worse than average weather, usually seen during heat wave in Summer or above average snowfall in Winter.

DEFCON 3 — Weatherman has removed suit jacket and either rolled up sleeves, or loosened tie and collar button, but not both  – Heavy weather condition to take place shortly i.e. blizzard or category 1 or 2 hurricane to hit the area.

DEFCON 2 — Weatherman has removed suit jacket, rolled up sleeves, and loosened tie and unbuttoned collar — Serious weather is imminent i.e. long, heavy blizzard with more than 1 foot of snow in area, or a category 3 or greater hurricane to impact area.

DEFCON 1 — Weatherman has removed suit jacket, rolled up sleeves, loosened tie and unbuttoned collar, and his hair is not perfect — Very serious weather is imminent; we’re talking wrath of god type stuff.

I saw Weather DEFCON 2 last night before the recent blizzard (winter storm Hercules), and in 2012 for Hurricane Sandy.

I have never seen Weather DEFCON 1. I don’t want to.