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Tag Archives: popculture

Max Martin is a name you’ve probably never heard of, but his resumé reads like a Top 50 pop chart of the late 90s and a Top 10 of recent years. Here are some of the highlights, are there any you don’t recognize??

  • Backstreet Boys – As Long As You Love Me
  • Backstreet Boys – Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
  • Backstreet Boys – I Want It That Way
  • Backstreet Boys – Quit Playing Games With My Heart
  • Backstreet Boys – Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely
  • Backstreet Boys – Shape of My Heart
  • Britney Spears – …Baby One More Time
  • Britney Spears – (You Drive Me) Crazy
  • Britney Spears – If U Seek Amy
  • Britney Spears – I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman
  • Britney Spears – Lucky
  • Britney Spears – Oops!…I Did It Again
  • Britney Spears – Stronger
  • Britney Spears – 3
  • N’Sync – I Want You Back
  • N’Sync – It’s Gonna Be Me
  • N’Sync – Tearin’ Up My Heart
  • Kelly Clarkson – Behind These Hazel Eyes
  • Kelly Clarkson – My Life Would Suck Without You
  • Kelly Clarkson – Since U Been Gone
  • Pink – Please Don’t Leave Me
  • Pink – So What
  • Pink – U+Ur Hand
  • Katy Perry – Hot N Cold
  • Katy Perry – I Kissed A Girl
  • Ace of Base – Beautiful Life
  • Ace of Base – Lucky Love
  • Ace of Base – Never Gonna Say I’m Sorry
  • Robyn – Do You Know (What it Takes)
  • Robyn – Show Me Love
  • Cyndi Lauper – Into The Nightlife

If not the King, he is at least the puppeteer.

Black Snake Moan is about a newly separated, former Blues guitarist, born-again Christian played by Samuel L. Jackson. He happens to find a mostly naked, beaten and sick white trash portrayed by Christina Ricci outside his farm one morning, and proceeds to chain her to the radiator in his living room. The two characters are foils to each other. Jackson’s washed up; his wife cheated on him with his younger brother, his musical career is over, he spends his days tending to his farm and selling vegetables at the local farmers market. Ricci’s life is just starting, and she proceeds to pop pills, imbibe and sleep her way around the lazy Southern town that she lives in. Once they cross paths, Jackson experiences a revelation and decides that God has given him a metaphoric test to fix up his life, by curing Ricci of her nymphophillia.

Thrown into the mix is Justin Timberlake, who Ricci is in an open relationship with (well, at least her end). Timberlake plays a young, white American on his way to boot camp; which doesn’t turn out too well since he has an anxiety disorder, and he returns to town, with his newfound militaristic talents, in search of his missing companion.

Black Snake Moan basically covered the map of hot issues: religion, race, age, war; I think the only thing missing was an allusion to saving the environment. The story and the characters, primarily Jackson and Ricci, are developed well, but the latter half of the movie is predictable and stereotypical. Jackson reverts to his typical badass character, all the loose ends are tied up and everyone lives happily ever after; BSM succumbs to the the basic fallicy of Hollywood.

It wasn’t a music-driven movie musical like Moulin Rouge, but music played a large part. Jackson had several performances (singing and “playing” the guitar) and Ricci also sang. In fact, ironically the only person that did not perform musically was Justin Timberlake. I also liked how the movie was shot. There were several instances where I thought, “Oh, well that’s clever”. A decent movie, that will unfortuantely be quite dated in a decade or so: 3.5/5.

Some months ago, I downloaded a new track by Avril Lavigne called Girlfriend. On the first listen, it was one of those pop songs made with pure cheese, that is immediately catchy and you want to hear it again and again. At the same time, the radio stations were playing the Lavigne’s single, Keep Holding On, which I thought was a horrible and bland song, and I wondered why they didn’t release Girlfriend as a single.

The radio stations started playing Girlfriend this past week, over and over; thus granting my wish to hear it again and again. I think this would have been a great summer song, and maybe the marketers staged the recent good weather to coincide with the song’s release. Unfortunately for the song however, it is incredibly shallow and after listening to it a couple of times, it has started to get annoying. It’s one of those songs that sound great, and everything just goes downhill from there.

Lavigne’s label looks to be banking on this catchy pop tune because she has recorded 8 different versions of the song, English + 7 other languages. I found the Mandarin version of Girlfriend and it is lame. First, the Mandarin sections sound like someone else is singing it and only certain sections of the chorus are in Mandarin — all the verses are still in English. I would expect a localized version of a song to have the majority of the song in the native language, not just the easy bits. But I guess that is too much to ask of the lyricists.

Having watched the Grammies and the Oscars recently, I realized that they operate under a dumb, backwards system. The voting for best *whatever* is done by a panel of industry experts that don’t necessarily reflect our views (i.e., why were the Dixie Chicks the big winners this year?). In this day of American Idol, it should be the people that vote to see the best. See NHL All-Star selections for reference.

Of course, by letting the people vote for the best *whatever*, you open the door for ballot stuffing. Such was the case in the Vote For Rory campaign, that tried to send a random non-superstar NHLer (in this case Rory Fitzpatrick of the Canucks) to the All-Star game. This was only prevented by the NHL mucking around with the numbers once they realized they couldn’t technologically block the campaign.

Of course, allowing the common fan to vote for the best song of the year would result in the same thing. American Idol is clever about it because it costs you a fee to vote. So why not build upon that thought. Here’s my idea. Every CD that’s sold will include a unique code which can be used by the consumer to vote once for that album, or a song on the album for whatever category it’s nominated in. So if I bought the Killers and the Strokes album last year, I could cast my vote for the Strokes’ First Impressions Of Earth for the rock album of the year. Or I could cast a vote for the Strokes’ album to be the best album, and Bones from Sam’s Town to be the best song. Or maybe both albums were not noteworthy and I just won’t use my votes.

I think this is a good idea because it puts the voting power back into the people supporting the music industry; the people that are actually buying CDs. But maybe I’m just describing the fan-awards from the Billboard Music Awards or MMVAs.

Most of these songs I started listening to once I tuned into the radio again on my commutes. So, I don’t “own” most of these yet, which sounds like a lot of iTunes purchasing in the future. As always, I’m not entirely sure about the ranking, aside from the fact that the top 5 are correct and the general location of every single is about right.

  1. Phoenix – One Time To Many
  2. Belle & Sebastian – Funny Little Frog
  3. The Tragically Hip – In View
  4. Pink – Who Knew
  5. The Mountain Goats – Alibi
  6. Mobile – Out Of My Head
  7. Boy Kill Boy – Suzie
  8. The Blow – True Affection
  9. Nelly Furtado – Promiscuous Girl
  10. Muse – Starlight
  11. Jessica Simpson – A Public Affair
  12. Pilate (Pilot Speed) – I Won’t Blame You
  13. The Killers – Bones
  14. Rihanna – Unfaithful
  15. The Strokes – Juicebox
  16. Five For Fighting – The Riddle
  17. Phoenix – Consolation Prize
  18. Pink – U & Ur Hand
  19. John Mayer – Waiting On The World To Change
  20. Scissor Sisters – I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’ (Star Wars song btw)
  21. Joey Plaskett Emergency – Nowhere With You
  22. KT Tunstall – Suddenly I See
  23. The Pussycat Dolls – Stickwitu
  24. Prozzäk – When I Think Of You
  25. Chantal Kreviazuk – All I Can Do
  26. The Cardigans – Don’t Blame Your Daughter
  27. Nelly Furtado – Maneater (Pink Panther song btw)
  28. The Killers – When You Were Young
  29. The Magic Numbers – Love Me Like You
  30. Justin Timberlake – SexyBack
  31. Kelly Clarkson – Because Of You
  32. Madonna – Sorry
  33. Mobile – See Right Through You
  34. Shakira ft Wyclef – Hips Don’t Lie
  35. Blue October – Hate Me
  36. Daniel Powter – Jimmy Gets High
  37. Dixie Chicks – Not Ready To Make Nice
  38. Nick Lachey – What’s Left Of Me
  39. I kind of dislike these songs, but at one point liked them.

  40. Corinne Bailey Rae – Put Your Record On
  41. Gnarls Barkley – Crazy

Best Free iTunes Singles
There were 400 or so free downloads from the US iTunes Store (thanks to 250 tracks from Facebook), and I probably download about 300 of them. This is generally hit or miss but there were a couple of tracks I really liked. I also missed d/ling a track by The Guillemots (damn!). Also, there is some conflicts between this list and the above; but on this list a factor for the placement of the song is whether I would have found out about it if not for the ITS.

  1. Sophie Milman – Back Home To Me
  2. The Blow – True Affection
  3. Boy Kill Boy – Suzie
  4. Phoenix – Consolation Prizes
  5. The Magic Numbers – Love Me Like You
  6. The Format – Time Bomb
  7. Bettie Serveert – Attagirl
  8. The Little Ones – Lovers Who Uncover
  9. Psapp – Tricycle
  10. Asobi Seksu – Thursday
  11. The Go! Team – Junior Kickstart
  12. The Gossip – Standing In The Way Of Control
  13. Augustina – Boston
  14. Editors – Munich


I really didn’t buy any albums this year, and the ones I did buy I was already pretty sure they were awesome beforehand (and thus made it onto this list). Unfortunately, what I think the best album of this year (The Guillemots’ Through The Window Pane) wasn’t released in Canada.

  1. Belle and Sebastian – The Life Pursuit
  2. The Strokes – First Impressions of Earth
  3. John Mayer – Continuum
  4. Prozzak – Cruel Cruel World

I spent $126.25 on CDs, buying 21 of them and spending $6.01 on average. This is way down from last year’s 74 CDs and $362.78 spent.

On my trip to France, I coincidently went to Notre Dame on a Sunday and was able to catch a Mass. That was pretty lucky, but the rest of the day wasn’t really because it was raining the entire day. While I was wandering around in the rain, I did manage to walk past a Muji.

This was the first time I came across a Muji (apparently they are popular in the UK as well), but I had heard about it online. It was basically the Japanese version of Ikea – minimalist design. It was very cool, I picked every piece of stationary up and played around with it (I had to see what it was!), the furniture not so eye-opening. While being pretty cool though, it was also pretty expensive; I couldn’t really justify paying 8€ for an aluminum lead pencil.

In any case, I didn’t really have a point for this blog aside from the fact that I wish they would open a Muji over here. I think I would have to go all the way to NYC in order to visit one.

Radio is pretty stupid, and unfortunately for me I end up listening to morning show radio on my commute to work. I don’t have to, but I’m too lazy to bring the FM adapter for my ipod or burn some interesting CDs. So it’s my fault, and I have to suffer through idiotic morning shows because of it; they are the worse in fact as there is a lot of competition and they seem like they are all catering to lower than the lowest denominator.

All I really want is to listen to music, and as little of the inane chatter as possible. What I usually end up doing is alternating between radio stations, I started off with two: Scott, Melanie & Dave on 103.5 and Roger, Rick & Marilyn on CHUM FM. That didn’t work out because there was still too much talk so I added Mix 99.9 into the uh mix. Mix is doing its Jack FM imitation by having no DJs during the summer, so I think it’s a good addition. The problem with Mix is that the music it plays has too much 70s and 80s rock, unlike CHUM which has the oldies, but stuff I’m more inclined to listen to.

I ran out of reading material on my trip to China so when I happened by a bookstore in Shanghai, I took a browse to see if I could fulfill my need. I actually found some interesting stuff in the store (such as cheap, legal CDs — cheaper than native ones actually, and MP3 CD-ROMs), but their English section was kind of lacking. They had two shelves of books in English (some being in French).

The English books however were pretty good. They had a lot of books that I already bought and read: Freakonomics, Everything Bad Is Good For You, The World Is Flat; in addition to Harry Potter books. They also had Blink by Malcolm Gladwell which was on my need-to-read list. Also, it was only ¥60 which is like $8.40CDN (soft cover though).

Blink is about an unconscious, but powerful part of our brain that is able to make quick (but not instant) and complex calculations. It is this cognitive ability to quickly decide if someone is truthful or lying, something is real or fake, that lets us make decisions in a “blink” of an eye. Gladwell then proceeds to discuss why we can be fooled by this ability in to making the wrong decisions!

I had expected this book to be interesting and for the most part it was. Gladwell’s distinctive style is also present and makes for a flowing read. I had some problems with the experiements at the beginning of the book but as I read on, they were resolved. I think the key factor is to realize that what he is describing is entirely separate from the logical reasoning part of your conscious, and that your brain is able to choose to use either the logical or impression decision maker when the time is right; which, without reading the book, I would assume is the fallicty of Think!.

The thesis of Everything Bad is Good For You is that there is a ‘Sleeper Curve’ in popular media that is actually making us smarter, not dumber as intuition would suggest (due to catering to the lowest denominator). The book discusses relevant topics such as gaming, TV, internet, and film (cinema); bascially what many of us would call as hobbies.

Parallels are drawn between TV series from the 50s to popular works of today such as Lost and 24; and it is suggested that these activities are improving our cognitive skills. Perhaps the author is simply finding a reason to allow him to watch all these shows!

The second proposition is that our IQ is increasing, however the argument in this respect is not as convincing. Overall however, it was an interesting (and very quick!) read.

Although, the term twixter has seemingly identified my peers and generation, I haven’t stopped searching for explanations of why we are the way we are. Because of this, I have been reading another take on this subject, explaining delayed marriages and the extension of random goofiness, with Urban Tribes: Are Friends The New Family?

Using his own urban tribe in San Francisco and those that have corresponded with him through his website, the author describes what the defining characteristics of a tribe are. The easiest and most universally understood definition I can think of is the show Friends. In Friends, there is a group of individuals who spend a lot of time together, have a lot of shared experiences and rely on each other for emotional support. The author theorizes that because of close-knit groups like these, people finishing college feel no need to get married.

There book describes many aspects of the dynamics in a group of friends which I found to be pretty interesting; and can see examples of it in my circle. These sorts of analyses were in my opinion the most interesting, because now looking back, his reasoning for delaying marriage is not new and is very similar to the idea of twixters.

Similarily, there is an article that does not focus on delayed marriage, but more so on why people going into their 40s and maybe 50s are still acting like kids. Once I get past the twixter stage, I think I will very well end up as one of the Grups.

A couple of things from reading Freakonomics recently:

Malcolm Gladwell discusses why he liked Freakonomics when they did not support his Tipping Point theory of why New York’s crime rate diminished. The same day, the authors of Freakonomics respond. Bet you wouldn’t see this happening without the Internet. (and Gladwell responds to their rebuttal soon after)

Slate examines why Gap’s sales are in the doldrums since the beginning of the 21st century. When first reading this type of analysis, I immediately thought of how this could be explained by using the Freakonomics approach, too bad that this topic isn’t controversial enough for them to take it on. (also on Slate, why Gap’s clothes now suck)

When I read in the Globe and Mail today about teen bedrooms looking like airplane cockpits, complete with “computers, cellphones, MP3 players, video game consoles and televisions”; I can’t help but think that there are describing my room.

Perhaps it’s a side effect of not having these luxuries when I was in high school (well I guess that’s not true, just not to that extent) but sometimes I feel I belong more to these connected teens of the MySpace generation than to the one finishing up school and starting my career.

Not to say that I am stuck in a Peter Pan fantasy. Maybe I’m just growing as society is. When Prozzäk released their first album, Hot Show, their music was the essence of Pop music at that time. Even their characters, Simon and Milo were young, colourful, and cartoonish. Now 8 years later, with the release of Cruel Cruel World; Simon, Milo and their music have grown with the times to be more mellow and refined.

Back in high school, I liked Prozzäk and I like their style now. Maybe I’m growing up with society and welcoming the changes in lifestyle brought on by technological change? So much for being old fashioned.

Awhile back, I blogged about looking for a hockey blog. I’ve finally found one and not a game too soon as I’m in second place in my hockey pool (and unfortunately, quite a bits back).

This blog is hosted on on and written by Elisha Cuthbert of 24 and The Girl Next Door fame. It’s an interesting read, OMG LOL!! At least she’s Canadian.

I don’t think this will help me too much in my pool however.

I have some weird digital cable package whereby I don’t have any normal music channels (i.e. MTV* or Much) but I get some weirder ones including channel PCHM otherwise known as Punch Much.

If you haven’t had the luxury of watching this channel, it’s basically 24/7 all-request music vids (except it’s not because I’ve seen it play some random top 40 video instead of the highest percentage request). To request a song, you send an SMS with the code number of the song you want to request, which means you have an even smaller playlist than your average Clear Channel radio station.

Actually, it’s kind of funny at times because you have kids requesting the same song over and over kind of like how DJ Fresh Prince played Ashley’s song 20 times an hour in that one episode of Fresh Prince (I’ve seen Don’t Cha twice since starting this post…). The only thing stopping (not very well I might add) these kids from doing it constantly is that everything you want to do on Punch Much costs 75¢.

i think us older viewers quickly realize that this channel is a money sink for the viewers who actually participate. You can’t realistically get a song played with one vote, so there goes like $5 per video you want to see. Then you can chat over tv with your fellow viewers at 75¢ a pop (it’s jackpot time for Much when they start playing trivia…don’t kids know about Google??) and of course you’ll need to register your nickname using another message. And if that’s not enough, if you don’t want your conversation being read by the other 50 kids watching the channel, you can take it offline and send a private message for, you guessed it; 75¢.

I hope that the smart kids would be sending email messages or phone numbers on their first message, but I’m guessing that Much cleverly filters out email addresses and strings of numbers.

* Upon coming back from the States, I was surprised to find that MTV Canada disappeared (MTV2 is actually worth watching). So turns out the story is that CHUM Media (which owns Muchmusic et al) bought out Craig Media who coincidently also ran MTV Canada. What, no anti-competition laws regarding music video channels??

i saw a bit of the dukes of hazzard special on much and i felt myself getting stupider and stupider. i didn’t even recognize one of the vj’s, he looked like some kid who stepped out of the new york rock scene (interviewing jessica simpson? what a sell-out) and he never had anything to say after the stars answered the stupid questions. the stars themselves didn’t sound like they wanted to be there in front of 10,000 fans packed into the much parking lot. i guess they figured they didn’t have to be enthusiastic about their role since everyone would watch it for short shorts anyways. they seemed more involved in signing autographs and posing for pictures with their fans. of course when they actually made it to their seats to answer questions, they had stupid questions to answer with stupid answers. ahh media & celebrities. now wonder i stopped watching tv.

Sasha Frere-Jones of The New Yorker lashes out against labels that force music critics to sit for “listening sessions” of new albums. He says that the reasoning behind the practice is flawed, music critics receiving advances aren’t the ones responsible piracy of the album before their release.

I particularly enjoyed the fact that he says “almost all hip-hop releases … don’t go through this advance process“. Is that implying that the hip-hop audience predominantly pirate their music (so they can save up for their nikes — oops wrong post)? while hipsters spend their hard earned cash on indie records and are less prone to downloading them?

recently, i’ve been reading no logo by naomi klein. it is a deep expose into the building of brands and in turn corporations and how they have (negatively) affected the world. it examines various issues such as sweat shop techniques and “culture jamming” from both the point of view of corporations and how our society is reacting. all of the examples are at least five years old (it was published in 2000) which further allows the reader to draw conclusions about how our society has progressed. luckily for us, klein is a canadian and as such, canadian examples are represented throughout the book.

i bought this book many months ago and finally got around to reading it. for some reason or another, i find this ~450 page + footnotes/appendicies book difficult to digest. on occasion i simply gloss over the text as if i were reading a textbook without understanding or absorbing anything. then there are times when i am deeply engrossed into hearing about the stories from sweatshop workers. perhaps i am more interested in reading about “first-hand” accounts rather than the author’s interpretation of history.

while no logo is discusses the interesting world of branding, given the choice i would rather have spent my time reading other books on my todo list. the material seems slightly too deep and i don’t yet have the background to fully absorb the impact of her writing. i should think that i will re-read this book in several years and get more out of it

sometimes, the itunes free single of the week is crappy but on occasion you get lucky and you actually like the track and you’re introduced to new music (which i guess is the point right?). anyways, recently i’ve been getting lucky and downloaded a couple of pretty good (at least 3 stars) songs:

the geeks get the girls (american hi-fi): hilarious and a fusion of mainstream+punk?

l-l-love (astaire): i think this is one of those next-stage-in-evolution adult contemporary genre type songs (nsie-ac?)

club foot (kasabian): i heard this track on smallville, and i was all like I KNOW THIS. cross marketing yo

back to me (kathleen edwards): another catchy nsie-ac

one evening (feist): apparently she’s canadian? another nsie-ac

walking with a ghost (tegan & sara): another canadian group which i got introduced to here

anyways, it seems to me that the free singles are either ones that will resonate with the young crowd who are into technology and watch like the oc, or they’re for older folks who have money to spend on digital music and don’t want to hear a lot of noise.

i missed my flight to seattle because i was stuck at o’hare in chicago. well that’s not really true, i was stuck on the plane on the ground at pearson because the window for my flight to land at o’hare got moved back two hours. so anyways, i ended up catching the next flight from chicago to seattle an hour and a bit later. on the plus side, i got upgraded to economy plus whatever that means (but my boarding pass is now gold).

aside from that little hiccup, the big problem i ended up having was that i finished reading my book that was supposed to last me the whole trip! i brought malcolm gladwell‘s the tipping point with me even though it wasn’t the next book in my queue (hey it was small and light).

anyways, it was a fairly interesting book because gladwell is a captivating writer. the problem i had with it was that it spent a lot of time discussing examples and not really theory. it also seemed at times that he was taking a very narrow angle at the problems described, but he did have some unique perspectives at problems like smoking in teens. the middle of the book was fairly weak as it was talking about sesame street and pre-schoolers — not something i’m really interested in. if it weren’t for the fact that i had nothing else to do, i think i would have taken a break from it.

i had lunch today with my dad (at a chinese place obviously) and afterwards my dad wanted to check out this chinese bookstore nearby. as chance would have it, this place was also selling cds; so knowing me, i had to take a look.

to my surprise, they weren’t just selling chinese artists there were also a lot of english cds! it looked like someone was attempting to get rid of their 80s collection; there was taylor dayne, debbie “i’m in playboy this month” gibson, tiffany aka “i made it to playboy first”, belinda carlisle and others.

well it didn’t seem all too interesting until i happened onto new kids on the block’s step by step. such a classic. i was very, very tempted to pick it up for the measly $5 asking price. it didn’t feel right however to pay the full price, and i didn’t have enough confidence to haggle it down to a couple of bucks (where’s my mom when you need her to buy a nkotb cd for you??). anyways i just wanted you to know that i’m now regretting not being able to listen to the people who influenced the backstreet boys, nsync, 5ive and blink 182!

top albums of 2004

1. franz ferdinand self titled
2. the killers’ hot fuss
3. ted leo & the pharmacists’ shake the sheets
4. keane’s hopes & fears
5. the thrills’ let’s bottle bohemia

top singles of 2004
this list was pretty hard to do because the songs are different and hard to rate against each other. also these songs are taken from a list of songs i first heard in 2004 (e.g. the strokes’ room on fire was released in 2003)
1. the strokes — 12:51
2. britney spears — toxic
3. the strokes — reptilia

4. franz ferdinand — take me out
5. jet — are you gonna be my girl?
6. maroon 5 — she will be loved
7. the thrills’ — whatever happened to corey haim?
8. dido — white flag
9. ashlee simpson — pieces of me

10. hilary duff — come clean
11. janet jackson — just a little while
12. enrique iglesias — not in love
13. kanye west — through the wire
14. avril lavigne — don’t tell me
15. d12 — my band

top movie of 2004: the incredibles, hero and shrek 2 are honorable mentions.

money spent on CDs: $477.60 over 90 CDs.
money spent on DVDs: $196.13 over 13 DVDs.
money spent on movies: $87.88 over 9 movies.

list (can’t rank em!) of cool experiences this year:

the “if you told me one year ago i wouldn’t have believed you” change of the year: music preference = indie rock now?!

new years’ resolution: (find time to) read more (but not on the web).

I expected all you bloggers to answer this “if you told me one year ago i wouldn’t have believed you” change of the year question on your blog too 😉

i hadn’t noticed it before because i wasn’t paying attention, but from these pictures it looks as if jessica simpson has had a lot of plastic surgery done; oh wait no, no it was just a growth spurt.

also about jessica simpson: “Admittedly, as her reality-TV appearances prove, she’s probably only a hundred IQ points over what’s needed to write a Limp Bizkit album.

now i know why avril’s new cd sucks, the matrix aren’t writing her songs anymore. also, i’ve noticed in her video for don’t tell me that she no longer dresses like a sk8ter gurl and instead prances around in her undies. i guess that’s what fame will do to ya.

also, i’m in the process of re-designing. not really in a rush to do it but it’s something i intend to finish by september (so the lil picture at the side won’t get us in trouble at work). it was kinda cool that when i was changing the design i thought to myself: hrmm it would be nice if i had split up the layout, content, and design so i wouldn’t have to modify too many files; well it turns out that i had done that! coolios.

sometimes you run across a lot of cool links, and sometimes you spend an entire week without seeing anything interesting. well the last couple of days i’ve come across a bunch of cool things (altho it seems like all i blog about is fast food, obesity and ddr nowadays instead of hockey, music and other garbage). anyways, the trouble with getting too many links is that no one will click thru them, but anyways:

i’m sure most of you have heard how gaming is really big in korea. it’s not something that we in north america can readily imagine, so that’s why we rely on articles that profile south korean game-thletes. it’s pretty amazing stuff, and the parallel between superstar gamers and superstar athletes isn’t far off. Lim, the guy they profile trains for 10 hours a day, has sponsors, and is not allowed to have a gf. i think the coolest stat is the in some games, he does over 6 actions a second! how many times can you click the mouse without moving in a second? now that’s an athlete.

slate’s mentioning how the tide has shifted and the public is adopting widescreen movies. i can say i was always on the widescreen bandwagon, why? because it looks more like a movie theatre! i remember in high school, my friend tried to make me feel real stupid for liking widescreen (you’re wasting 1/2 of the screen dumbass) well TOO BAD I WIN!! but anyways, widescreen really is better, if you don’t believe me, this article will explain it.

cereality, a cafe where you can have cereal. i’m guessing this is a pure yuppie cafe.

also, some american idol season 3 links:

i know i know, that last link is a nytimes link which i said i would never link too (registration, no access to archives) but hey it’s by sarah hepola who’s one of my favorite online writers so there.

i wasn’t looking forward to the superbowl seeing as how for the last month the papers have been saying that the patriots were going to win (which they did to no one’s surprise). the only thing that i wanted to see was the “secret performer” at the halftime show who was supposed to perform with janet jackson, p. diddy, kid rock and nelly. some had pegged it as michael jackson which would have been ironic considering there were supposed to be a lot of kids on the field at the same time. a more conservative guess was justin timberlake.

if you’ve been on the web tonight you probably would have found out that it was JT and he finished off the show with janet by doing rock your body. you probably also heard that he made a boo boo at the end of the dance sequence. the official word is that it was an accident, CBS apologized, and NFL officials said that MTV would never do another halftime show.

i’m betting this will be like the britney/madonna kiss from the mtv music awards and be all over the news for the next couple of days. most of the debate will probably centre around whether it was premeditated or indeed an accident. it seems like it was planned because janet had something covering her nipple (nipple ring? pasty?) and could do with all the press with a new album coming out (kinda like paris hilton’s little video right before the simple life), but i’m not so sure about that. here’s my evidence:

janet's nipple slip from the superbowl

the first picture is right after timberlake ripped off janet’s “gladiator clothing” and before her reaction. the second picture’s the kicker, it shows janet giving justin a WTF-did-you-just-do look. janet could have been acting, but she’s a singer not an actor and most singer’s can’t act well (take madonna for example). so i dunno, i’m not saying that it was an accident but it could swing either way (although rock your body does have a line: “i’ll get you naked by the end of this song”)

sidethoughts: if JT wasn’t The Man before, he sure is now.