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2007 December Archive at Three Roads Blog
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Archive for December, 2007

You’re a legend, Dave

Visionary Larry introduced me to the Kiwi folk duo Flight of the Conchords a few months ago.

Back in November, Conchords stars Bret McKenzie and Jermaine Clement appeared on the NPR radio show Fresh Air with Terry Gross. (Well, I suppose one can’t appear on a radio show.) They talked with Terry for about 20 minutes and gave some on-air performances of their favorite songs, including “Most Beautiful Girl in the Room” and “What Is Wrong in the World Today.”

Listening to the segment, I was surprised to learn that Bret had a part in Peter Jackson’s adaptation of the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy. Also, I learned that Jermaine speaks flawless French.

Check it out.

Click “Hear the Original ‘Fresh Air’ Interview and Performance.”

Hi

Nothing to say, really. Other than hello.

Bacn

The neologism bacn describes e-mail that’s not quite spam but nonetheless isn’t welcome. (It’s lesser spam, thus its place in the growing cyber-pork family.) Let’s say that somewhere along the way you willingly gave a company or organization your e-mail address, and now they’re sending you crap—bacn—all the time.

For me, the biggest senders of bacn are McAfee and Ticketmaster. As a (reluctant) user of their products and services, I could initially tolerate a certain amount of e-mail. But they’ve tested my patience again and again, and all of it is used up.

So here are my imperfect options: Erase the messages when they come (while cursing their names); hit the ‘Spam’ button, even though, technically, I gave them my address. (This increases the chance that the sender will get into trouble from my internet service provider (ISP) and/or e-mail service—kind of harsh, especially since it was I who offered up my e-mail address; or take the 20 seconds required to unsubscribe from their promotional e-mails.

The thing about the last option is it’s a pain. (OK, a minor one, but still.) What if you want to send a message to Company X that you will tolerate—appreciate even—a few e-mail promotions here and there, once in a while? But you also want to emphasize that you won’t abide a constant deluge of offers and uninteresting newsletters.

Enter the ‘Bacn’ button.

This button will let you send that warning message, that shot across the bow. By labeling an e-mail bacn, you’re saying to Company X, “I realize I willingly gave you my e-mail, but you’re testing my patience, and you can’t continue on your current track.”

Your e-mail provider, Gmail, yahoo, etc., would take note of your bacn reports and, if they got to certain number, would then notify the sender of imminent peril should they keep sending unwanted e-mail.

Good idea?

Doping dopers

With the Mitchell report in the headlines, I thought this would be a timely Christmas gift for the disenchanted sports fan in your life. Click here to buy a mug.

doperssuckcoffeemug.jpg

w00t

Merriam Webster announced their Word of the Year yesterday: the word is w00t—spelled with two zeros instead of Os. It’s a exclamation of joy spoken by a video game player.

Yeah, pretty silly. Destined for the shelf of embarrassingly dumb words. Right next to hella.

Vacation

Posting will be light–non-existent, actually–for the next week to 10 days.

Hasta luego!

Movie Review: No Country for Old Men

Anton Chigurh, the assassin in No Country for Old Men, has three deadly weapons at his disposal, and he uses each one with such calculating dispatch that you’ll be hard pressed to find a creepier and more competent villain in any movie, ever.

The first weapon is a cattle gun, which doesn’t actually look like a gun at all. Carrying around an air canister and attached hose, Chigurh uses it to both kill people and blow out door locks. The second is a shotgun with a silencer. The third weapon? The scariest haircut you’ve ever seen.

According to Wikipedia, it’s known as a pageboy: “It involves straight hair hanging to below the ear where it usually turns under. Often there is a fringe (bangs) in the front.” It’s a style associated with old English pages, or servants. Now, it’s associated a homicidal maniac.

The only person Anton Chigurh serves is his internal psychopath. Hired to recover money that was lost in a drug deal gone awry, Chigurh seems less interested in money or finer points of his job description than with stalking and killing. In fact, I think he’d take any job provided it gave him an excuse to do those two things.

No Country for Old Men, made by the Cohen brothers, is an adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s 2005 novel of the same name. Like many of McCarthy’s stories, there’s a lot of violence, an unglamorous western landscape, and an assortment of taciturn characters.

The movie is unlike typical Cohen brothers movies, however. There is very little humor, for one thing. And there is no soundtrack—nothing but contextual sounds of Texas borderland circa 1980. None of the usual stock characters that populate their movies are there: no John Goodman, Steve Buscemi or John Turturro.

That’s not to say I didn’t like it—I did. But it’s sort of unsettling to enjoy a movie that’s so dark …