Saturday, February 05, 2011
The Best of DoUI for 2010
Once again it's time for us to toot our horns. (That was a relief! Memo to self, skip the staff chili breakfasts from now on.)
It's also time for a review of the bits, posts, and random keyboard strikes that we've chosen as our best for the year. I should say, mostly MY best, as Nuffy and Stew have been more intermittent, having better things to do like golfing, writing great American screenplays, and watching episodes of 24 in high-definition television.
- Five Years Older - Nuffy comments on our fifth anniversary. At least that's what we think he was writing about.
- Goodness Is Out, The Chin Is In - Chins can be cruel sometimes.
- Even More Academy Bestness! - Earl's annual review of the Oscar Best Picture nominees. They always seem weirder in print.
- Olympic Update - Stew posts about the Olympics. Hell, Stew posts, period!
- Comforting Words for the Unwise - You'd think at a funeral there's not a lot you could say that would offend the deceased. Apparently, there is.
- France Surrenders! - In the 2010 World Cup, just in case you were worried that Andorra had gone all Nazi.
- Somebody Cut Me on Purpose! - All the personal details from Earl's hernia surgery, because we know you want them.
- The Most Interesting Man in the World - Outtakes - Sure he can feed mountain eagles and cliff dive, but with a life like that he's going to be easily distracted.
- Electric Nose Hair Trimmer? I Thought that Was the Turn Signal! - They're putting all sorts of things in luxury cars these days, whether you want them or not.
- Return of the Original Best Thing Ever - The Great American Screenplay,Nuffy-style!
- On This Day - The stories behind the innocuous, dull, mind-numbingly boring historical tidbits.
- Scorin' Warren - According to Peter Biskind, Warren Beatty was always on the make. As Groucho once said of Harpo, "He does better in his sleep than I do awake."
- How to Annoy People - Part 767 - Tips on how to make people want to throttle you. Guaranteed to inspire violent nervous breakdowns or derisive ridicule.
- Nothing Is Funny, A Lament for Conan O'Brien -Nuffy discusses the Conan/Jay imbroglio. Unfortunately, he doesn't offer us a definition as to what an "imbroglio" is.
- Now That's a Warm Bed! - Hotels are experimenting with human "bed-warmers." Admittedly, that's better than "bed-wetters."
- The Incredible Lobster Bisque! - Soup is not only good food, it can do 100 chin-ups in a single sitting.
- Missin' Cakey - Four words: cartoon, Cakey the Clown. It's irresistible, just like a train wreck.
- Nashville, Here I Come! - Earl pens country music titles. Yeah, like that's hard.
- Super Bowl Surprises - Lots of things happen during the Super Bowl and we don't always catch all of them.
- A Valentine's Day Greetings - Cakey the Clown hearts you. No, that's not some disgusting sex act... sheesh ...you people, sometimes!
- Valentine's Day Advice Worth Ignoring - There's nothing quite so touchingly sincere as personal advice from celebrities as part of movie promotions.
- Bum-Bum-Da-Bum-Bum, Bum-Bum-Da-Bum-Bum - The Winter Olympics! Yeah, we know, but it was nearby in Canada.
- It's All Downhill for the Lynx - Animal competitors at the Olympics! (Well, besides Bode Miller.)
- Shatner Gold... Olympic Gold - William Shatner was part of the official Olympic ceremonies. Well, of course he was!
- Five Times Better Live Blog - Nuffy Noe live blogged the Oscars for us last year. At least, we think it was the Oscars.
- HOLY HORSE GRENADES! Up at last! - More of Nuffy's Oscar blogging from the cheap seats, supposedly.
- Ick! - The Oscar blogging intrigue gets even more interesting. For example, just what exactly has Jack Nicholson been eating?
- Getting April Fool's Day Right - Because we know you care as much as we do.
- Things Star Trek Can Teach NASA - Let's face it, the folks at NASA need all the help they can get these days.
- Adult Soccer League - No, it's not what your thinking, you pervs.
- Vuvuzela Nightmare - We can still hear them.
- I Can Has Nausea - The end of Western Civilization? Well, the end of our lunches in our stomachs, that's for sure.
- Salt, Is There Anything It Can't Do? Redux - Salt, the other white meat.
- No Ma'am, I Never Meant to Rock You at All - What if famous rock lyrics were retracted? Yeah, but it killed 20 minutes on Twitter.
- An Unfortunate Earful - The Most Interesting Man Outtakes, in audio form! Just because we can!
- New for Oktoberfest! Pigs so Hot They'll Melt Your Face Off! - The title tells the story just fine, but did we mention there's cannibalism too?
- Maybe We Should Have Named the School "American University?" - Higher Education marketing is harder than it looks.
- You Never Know What'll Happen in Politics! - But if you guessed something really nutty, congratulations!
- And Yet No Farther than a Won-Ton's Bird - Behold the noble Thanksgiving turkey! And then there's the one we're serving...
- Is There Anybody Out There? - NASA takes a step closer to finding extraterrestrial life, or livening up press conferences
Labels: Best of 2010
Wednesday, February 02, 2011
Tuesday, February 01, 2011
VH1: Behind the Music - Infamous Moments in Rap
Highlights from the "lost" episode of VH1: Behind the Music.
[Self consciously hip music, accompanied by blurred shots of drugged out hippie musicians arguing, a well-dressed rock producer snorting coke, and Ozzy Osbourne riding a llama through a Whole Foods outlet]
NARRATOR: Tonight on VH1: Behind the Music: The genre of hip hop and particularly rap has taken the music industry by storm, evolving into a multi-billion dollar industry, and catapulting dozens of artists to stardom, regardless of their complete inability to sing, play an instrument, or figure out how to download their own songs from iTunes.
Yet, rap music has not been without its scandals and tragedies. No, not the violence, shootings, or sex scandals. Face it, that's the kind of news that music publicists would kill for and have repeatedly. No, tonight we look at the really sordid moments when rap failed to live up to its raw, naked idealism. Tonight, the most infamous moments in the history of rap music itself.
[Title: VH1: Behind the Music - The Most Infamous Moments in Rap Music (No, Seriously Man, These Are Bad)]
NARRATOR: The year was 1968 and rap hadn't even been invented yet. Somehow though, a young Jewish-Canadian actor managed to synthesize traditional African storytelling techniques, rhythmically dramatic poetry readings, and funky jazz. His name was William Shatner.
[Archival footage of Gene Roddenberry]
GENE RODDENBERRY: No one understood Bill Shatner's The Transfigured Man. Music critics didn't understand it. Musicians didn't grasp its significance. Hell, I thought he was smoking dope when I first heard it. Later on though, when the rap scene became prominent, we all understood.
[Rapper LL Cool J, sitting in a jacuzzi, wearing a mink fedora, sipping a large McDonald's drink]
LL COOL J: Shatner was fly, man. If his rendition of Mr. Tambourine Man had a sweet hip-hop groove behind it, it would go platinum today.
NARRATOR: Tragically though, it didn't, and scandalously, to this day, people think rap was invented by inner-city DJs.
NARRATOR: For awhile it seemed like anyone could put out a rap album, and many did.
[Christopher Walken in a studio in front of a mic. He is wearing a bright white sweatsuit, a backwards baseball cap, a variety of chains, and a large novelty watch on a necklace. Several of his teeth are gold-capped.]
CHRISTOPHER WALKEN: My name is Chris and I have to say, that I find it rather hard to talk this way.
[Betty White in a studio in front of a mic. She is wearing the same exact outfit that Walken wore, including the gold teeth.]
BETTY WHITE: I might be old and wrinkly but this granny ain't no sucker. I'm high on Geritol and I'm a mean mutha [expletive deleted].
[Julia Child in a studio in front of a mic. She is wearing a gold-plated chef's hat and an apron with the words "Saucy Wench" spelled out in rhinestones on the front.]
NARRATOR: Etc., etc.
NARRATOR: In 2005, the White House turned to rap in an effort to answer criticism about the government's response to Hurricane Katrina. Only a few cuts from the planned album survive. One was from a number titled "Sorry 'bout That Big Easy."
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH - I never meant for floodin' or for the city to crumble.
Baby, you know this was a bipartisan bumble.
If I wanted New Orleans gone, if I had wanted it to pass,
I'd have sent a B2 bomber and just JDAM-med your ass.
VICE PRESIDENT DICK CHENEY: JDAM-med your ass!
GRANDMASTER FLASH: A lot of people have asked how they got those terrific low beats on the track, but it was really just Cheney pounding his chest to restart his heart between doing vocal beats. It turns out, people loved the sound so much, it's been sampled on over 250 rap tunes. Cheney didn't run for office because he's getting so much work as a hip-hop producer these days. He has to work under a pseudonym though: DJ Racy Pacemaker.
NARRATOR: President Barack Obama also toyed with the idea of using rap to communicate with the masses.
ICE CUBE: President Obama tried hard but it didn't work out. He kept wanting to go into his familiar speech rhythm, but the teleprompter couldn't keep up with the beat. Eventually it overheated, caught fire, and gave out. The poor guy got so confused, he broke out into an off-key version of Tiny Bubbles.
NARRATOR: Many actors and actresses tried their hand at rap music, but no one ever tapped into the scene with an authentic sound, with one exception: Meryl Streep.
DJ JAZZY JEFF: After her usual rigorous research and vocal training, she did such a good job her album sold 2,000,000 copies. Everyone thought it was a Snoop Dogg release.
NARRATOR: Even Snoop was convinced.
SNOOP DOGG: Damn man, I musta been stoned cold outta my mind when I did that record, cause I don't remember it at all.