Wednesday, November 26, 2008


family -

have an awesome, restful, and tasty holiday

[the following video is courtesy of chaucer]
[you probably don't want to watch this with your boss looking over your shoulder]

Contest of Cuteness

Battle of the double diminutives:
Is Raju's candidate the miniature shetland pony, or Ashley's, the baby pygmy hippo, cuter?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ahhh Joy

So now that my husband has left me for Cornell and Google Trends, it's time for me to show my love and contribution to JJ8 with my (Thank you, Da Oracle)
And what a lovely posting it is.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

from the annals of enough about the motherfucking hypothalamus, already!

my inability to focus on neurobiology today and consequent search for diversions led me to an interesting new google feature: trends [conveniently found at]. this feature allows you to enter a search term and see the amount of internet traffic that this item has generated world-wide over the past few years. there is also a trend line for how much this item has appeared in the news, below. additionally, you can break down the trends by region and/or by time.

so, for example, here is how much the world has cared about rudy giuliani since 5 years ago:
you can see that his numbers went up when he was a legitimate contender for the republican presidential nominee, nobody really gave a shit after he bombed out, and then a blip of interest in early september when he dissed obama for being a community organizer:


trends allows you to do head-to-head matchups, too. we can see in the following graph that, as many pundits have said, among the young and technology-saavy, once the campaign got going mccain never really had a shot:

another interesting matchup: hotdogs vs. hamburgers

as expected, nobody really cares about either of them in the middle of the winter. i was surprised to see hotdogs perpetually losing the battle though.

besides politics and meat, i found trends to be a useful tool for life affirmation. here we can see that sleep and beer have been remarkably consistent in their popularity over the past few years, with beer showing a definitive advantage over sleep during the warm summer months, and sleep closing the gap during the cold and dark winter:

this graph shows that, since 2003, sol and ashley really have stuck together, showing a slow but consistent upward tick:

a plot of new york vs. the world shows that we are definitely living in the right place:

now to bigger quesitons: what of peace, doom and butt? doom peaked in early 2004, i guess right after W started his 2nd term, but has since gone downhill dramatically. butt, on the other hand, has had the upper hand in the past year.

so there you have it folks - 2008, year of the butt. google said so.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Ladies and Gentlemen, Your new first family

I can't get over that picture. Seriously, that was the maybe the high point of the night. And frankly, this is just the best celebrity couple there is from here forward...

MY new favorite video

Maybe it's just the overarching good vibes from the world today, but this is pretty fucking adorable.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008



My new favorite video

Hat tip to Chaucer for the link. My productivity today started at "low" and is steadily dropping. If this doesn't fire you up... I don't know what to say. The rain shots are sick.

Today Is Election Day.

November 2nd, 2004, for me, was all about defeating George W. Bush. Today, November 4th, 2008, is all about electing Barack Obama. Simply put, I love the man. Today is going to be an intense day no matter what happens, but I want to stay in that place of positivity: in my lifetime, I have a politician I can admire, and there is a very good chance that today will go down in history as the day he is elected president. In this spirit of hope and affirmation, I offer ten reasons why Barack should win today.

10a. He plays poker, he watches The Wire, he follows the NFL closely enough to pick a decent fantasy team. I think it's important to share interests with your president. Bush enjoys "working on the ranch." Maybe for all the ranch owners in America that was appealing, but I'll stick with a guy who can set himself up for the evening with ESPN and a quick run to the bodega.

10b. He plays basketball. A lot has been made of the fact that he'd be the first black president, but what about the fact that he'd be the first president with game? And what is his game like? Is it an arechtypal old man game, characterized by hook shots and seventeen footers? Or can he still get to the hoop? And if he wore a jersey on the court, whose would it be? (I'm thinking Dr. J.)

Penetrating to set up an easy jump shot for a teammate.

9. He wasn't born into anything. He was born to a hippie mother and a Kenyan father who divorced soon after he was born. He was raised in Indonesia and by his grandparents in Hawaii. Let's be honest—it wouldn't surprise you if the dude with that biography ended up selling leather bracelets on the beach in Thailand. But Barack made his way to the U.S. Senate and, in less than 24 hours, maybe the presidency. That impresses me. Far too many of our leaders are the scions of old, established families (Bush, Kerry, Gore, McCain…). One of the best things about America is the fact that social background is not a prerequisite for success—Barack embodies that.

8. If they were Saturday morning cartoon characters, Barack would be Optimus Prime and Joe Biden would be Ironhide. Just as importanly, John McCain would be Megatron and Sarah Palin would be Starscream—as this clip proves (with the added bonus of Joe Lieberman as Soundwave).

7a. He went to Columbia. I'm pretty pleased that Barack was a lion, to say the least. And it's equally awesome that a lion might be president. But besides all of that—he SEEMS like someone who would go to Columbia. Columbia seems to attract intelligent randos, and I believe that's how Barack describes himself in Dreams of My Father. I dunno, I can just picture him eating a sandwich outside of Uris with a copy of the Spec in his hand.

7b. He smoked weed.

Who wants to get high and grab a chicken parm at JJ's Place? Barry does.

6. In November, 2007, when Gabi and I were in Egypt, I remember telling our guide, Heba, about Barack—this was in the context of how completely Bush had fucked America's reputation over there. I remember we described who Barack was, how he was black, how his father had been raised as a Muslim, etc. She thought about it for a moment, and then said, "But he probably won't win, though." I don't think you can overestimate, on the one hand, what Bush has done to tarnish America's image, and, on the other, what Barack's election would do to repare it. Heba thought, reasonably enough, that the prospect of America electing Barack Hussein Obama was just too good to be true.

5. McCain sucks. I know I wanted to stay in a place of positivity, but if McCain doesn't pull off the upset, there is going to be all this talk from the right about the media bias. I'm sorry, there is no bias. McCain is a terrible candidate. He has aged horribly over the last year. Watch a YouTube clip of him at the start of the primaries and watch one of him now: it is like watching a 65 year-old and a 74 year-old. Of course, the media never touches this story because it's "improper." Also, McCain is not a maverick. He voted with Bush on every important issue, including torture. You can't say the media is biased against McCain when they blatantly misreport the fact that he voted in support of torture. Finally, McCain wanted to pick Joe Lieberman as his vice-presidential candidate. But the right went ape shit because Lieberman supports abortion rights. So McCain bowed to their medieval hysteria and picked Sarah Palin, a woman he didn't know and who turned out to be pretty dumb. Now the right has a candidate for 2012 and McCain is stuck with a girl Starscream.

4. He can orate! Barack Obama is the best public speaker of my lifetime, period. He is even better than Coach Cal when he spoke at my elementary school graduation.

It's nice to be inspired.

3. He's mixed. My parents are members of different religions. So like many, many people I know, I didn't start out with an undivided identity based on my birth. How I define myself is something I had to work through, often consciously. I think that is an essential component of the American experience for our generation, and one that is too often ignored. Barack is part of that experience. To me he isn't post-racial, he's bi-racial, in the best way.

2. He's right about Afghanistan, health care, Iraq, renewable energy, taxes, abortion, torture, Iran…

1. When I was a kid I went to the Hall of Presidents in Disney World, and before breaking out the animatronic Grover Clevelands and Chester A. Arthurs, they showed a short movie. I remember the narrating saying that America had been lucky to always elect in its times of greatest crisis its greatest leaders: Lincoln during the Civil War era, Roosevelt during the Depression and World War II, and so forth. We were stuck with W. after 9/11, and we are even deeper in the shit now. But I believe Barack Obama is the leader who can get us through this crisis. And I believe he can lead America into the new century. I guess what I'm saying is: Sometimes there's a man… well, he's the man for his time and place. He fits right in there.

Yes, we can!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Election Family Dinner

posting this again, as it got stuck in the gay porn section of the blog...

Tomorrow night, come on over to our place to watch the returns and eat some fajitas. We're doing the meat & guac, can some of you guys pick up

1. tortillas
2. onions, peppers
3. lettuce, tom
4. cheese
5. sour cream
6. salsa, tortilla chips

any other vegs or sides. and BEER.

let me know what you're bringing pls -

Key moments in the election:

Gabi posting this helped turn the tide.