Thursday, August 31, 2006

Not Quite the Mississippi of the North

Indiana is not quite the Mississippi of the North, but apparently it is southern in almost everything but geography. A recent study by Trust for America's Health showed Indiana as tied for the 8th most obese state. Indiana was the only non-southern state in the top ten.

1. Mississippi ..........29.5 percent
2. Alabama ..............28.7 percent
3. West Virginia ........28.6 percent
4. Louisiana ............27.4 percent
5. Kentucky..............26.7 percent
6. Tennessee ............26.6 percent
7. Arkansas..............26.4 percent
8. (tie) Indiana ........26.2 percent
8. (tie) South Carolina..26.2 percent
10. Texas................25.8 percent

Not surprisingly, Indiana is above the national average in adult hypertension, asthma and diabetes as well.


Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Are you a god-fearing, gunloving single who is tired of liberal clogging your personals sites? FOX news personality Sean Hannity has a site for you. It's called Hannidate and as far as I can tell it's not a joke.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Our great leader

The government of North Korea frequently makes outrageous claims about their great leader Kim Jong Il. My favorite one is that he made 11 holes in one the first time he played golf and scored 38 under par.

Now, President Bush has followed suit. He claims he has read over 60 books this year. Ten more than Karl Rove. My favorite on the list is Albert Camus' The Stranger. Existent...what? Well, I do feel he is well-versed in the theory of the absurd.

A spokesman for the President is reported to have said, " (he)found it interesting. I don’t want to go too deep into it, but we discussed the origins of existentialism."

This list is ridiculous. I know he likes to vacation for up to six weeks, but to claim he read sixty books is well...absurd. Perhaps he was in Toronto and saw this ad.

As for the claims of our great leader, I expect to see Kim Jong Il at Augusta before I'd see George Bush at Borders.

Welcome Michelle Malkin Readers!

I have had 175 unique visitors and the day is only 90 minutes old. Who knew Michelle Malkin had so many readers? For those of you who don't know who Michelle Malkin is, she has been called the Asian Ann Coulter. She was born to Filipino parents who were visiting the US on a work visa, yet she has advocated against granting citizenship to children born in the US because they're parents were either temporarily working or visiting here.

She also wrote a book supporting the US decision to intern Asian-Americans during World War 2. She tried to make an analogy of the Japanese internment to the current war on terrorism.

Oh well, welcome anyway!

Friday, August 25, 2006

Leticia Ohara, you're freaking me out.

I looked in one of my yahoo accounts yesterday and noticed I was receiving mail from 2038. Apparently, Leticia Ohara is sending me email from the future. This is what it appears like in my inbox.

Leticia Ohara Get the right Loan and apply now ! Mon Jan 18, 2038 2k

These spammers are not as bright as I thought. I will be 66 years old in 2038. I think I'll find Cialis more useful than a loan.


Wal-Mart in bed with the Commies

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Horse named after Ann Coulter at the San Franscisco Zoo?

Visitors to the San Francisco zoo have noticed a horse with a blonde mane named "Coulter". This article questions whether or not someone at the zoo is poking fun of the loudmouthed pundit. The article in the San Francisco Gate mentions that many liberal bloggers have called Coulter "horseface" in the past and even links to an earlier blog post of mine as evidence.

The article suggests the horse may have been named after a generous zoo patron. I prefer to think that someone at the zoo has a fine sense of humor.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Hostettler/Ellsworth on Kos

This is a comprehensive analysis of the "Bloody 8th" district Congressional race between Sheriff Brad Ellsworth and Representative John Hostettler. The column is a good source of Hostettler's voting history. He is not a rubber stamp Republican. He voted against the war, against the repeal of the estate tax and against the Defense of Marriage Act, but for the wrong reasons (except possibly the war vote). The post also mentions one of his attack ads where he plays upon the fears of the socially conservative southwestern Indiana folk. The word "liberal" is used five times in one paragraph of commercial attack ad. He has tried to tie Sheriff Ellsworth to "Washington liberals" or well-known "liberals" like Nancy Pelosi. When asked if his constituents know who Pelosi is. He replied, "They know where San Francisco is". Nice!


Monday, August 21, 2006

To Cut or not to Cut

Mohels to Mozambique

Last fall, reporting on a randomized controlled trial in South Africa, scientists found that circumcision reduced female-to-male transmission by 60 percent.

Think about that: surgery as a vaccine. Drug researchers would kill for an HIV vaccine half as effective as circumcision.



Also, I agree with Mad hatter about Jon Benet Ramsey.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Ad on a Toronto Street

We saw this ad last weekend in Toronto. (click to make larger)

Friday, August 18, 2006

From the Pockets of Bigots

Focus on the Family is Dr. James Dobson's right wing Christian organization. Dobson believes in patriarchal marriages, that one should spank their children, homosexuality can be cured, stem cell research is akin to Nazi experiments, and that Sponge Bob Squarepants is gay. His organization based out of Colorado Springs, Colorado and will give you free books, CDs, and DVDs.

This article in a Seattle alternative paper gives step by step instructions as to how one can receive up to one hundred dollars of free merchandise per order.

Now, the Focus on the Family site does request a "suggested" donation, but I think we can all agree with Homer Simpson what a suggested donation means.

I can't wait to order 101 Frequently Asked Questions About Homosexuality by Mike Haley or Sex Begins in the Kitchen: Because Love is an All-Day Affair by Kevin Leman or maybe even a Chronicles of Narnia DVD.

For every dollar they waste by sending you free gear, it's one less dollar they have to lobby Washington, DC.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Midwest Music Summit

By the Kid

A few years ago, arguably the undisputed champion of the live music scene was a band by the name of Push Down & Turn. Their live shows had enough energy to run a small city, their music was catchy, and the band was very well organized. They had merchandizing down to a science and had great success during their run. They were on the HORDE fest after winning a regional battle of the bands in Chicago, their song made it onto a national CD put out by Abercrombe & Fitch, they were on the main stage one year at X-Fest, and they routinely packed every venue they played.

I actually went to college with all the members and was a fraternity brother to all but one member of the band. I can’t say I knew the guys that well; however, I knew them well enough to be able to approach them after the conclusion of their shows and chat. I often brought up the subject of how one of their ultimate goals, getting signed to a national label, was going. I always got the impression that the guys thought they were getting close and they would fill me in on how that progressed. At that time I thought there was no way these guys wouldn’t become a house hold name and find their music hawked at fine stores everywhere.

They never got signed and they ultimately broke up.

After I heard the news of their break up I was a little perplexed. If a band as good at Push Down & Turn didn’t make it, how does any band “make it” by getting signed to a national label? That same thought crossed my mind this weekend as I ventured out to the Midwest Music Summit because even after being exposed to many bands at many different venues, I didn’t see one bad band. I didn’t see one band that with a little luck (and a little payola-just kidding) couldn’t find themselves in the position to be adored by music critics and fans everywhere. The randomness of it all was not lost on me.

The Midwest Music Summit is an annual event in Indianapolis, now entering its fourth year. It features several unsigned, and a few signed, bands playing in several venues throughout the city. This year the organizers centralized the event in Broad Ripple, with a few venues notably Locals Only, Birdy’s and the Jazz Kitchen, off the beaten path. The MMS features around 300 bands over August 10 through August 12. Admission varied from venue to venue but for twenty-five bucks, you got a wristband that got you into any event during the weekend.

This was my first MMS with scheduling conflicts (all right, weddings) having precluded my attendance previously. With Torpor allegedly taking in some of the more scandalous attractions at our neighbor to the North, I had to scramble to find a suitable partner in crime for the festivities. With a last minute blessing from Mrs. Brick on Friday I was joined by friend of Torpor, Brick himself, in Broad Ripple.

Brick and I, both with wristbands in tow, headed out to try to get a flavor of most of the venues. Neither of us having wanting to wear the lovely bright green accessory stuck it in our pocket and ventured out to take in the summit.

At this point I want to give a small disclaimer. Because of the number of bands this weekend, I could not possible cover each of them. I thought it most helpful to expose a few that I found most intriguing either by the quality of their performance or in one case, the incredible following that the band has forged in a short amount of time.

The venue I was most impressed with over the course of the Summit was undoubtedly Connor’s Pub in Broad Ripple. Connor’s had two tents with live music and an acoustic stage inside the bar. Equally as impressive was the cheap beer; Bell’s from Michigan, going for three bucks a glass. The first band of the night was Lincolnton, North Carolina’s Burr Lives. Burr Lives is a four-piece guitar based rock band and played in the smaller tents at Connor’s Pub, stage. The twenty people who got to see them saw one of the hardest rocking bands I got to see. They played with a lot of energy and in fact were one of the best bands that I saw this past weekend. After the conclusion of their set I contemplated buying their EP for seven bucks. However I thought if I bought a CD from each band I saw that weekend and enjoyed, I would have to ask for a raise from Torpor for my editing duties. I didn’t buy the EP and I have regretted it since. If one of the members of the bands happens to read this, please let me know how I can get my hands on it. According to their myspace page, Burr Lives returns to Indianapolis on August 26, 2006 at the Emerson Theatre.

Brick and I headed to the main tent and took in a band called AbsentStar. I enjoyed them very much but Brick thought we should venture around and check out other venues. We watched three songs by this band and each was excellent.

Around ten at night we made our way to the bar formerly known as the Patio, Rouge. We headed there because I wanted to check out one of Indianapolis’ up and coming rock bands, Stereo Deluxe. Stereo Deluxe have gotten some a lot of press from the alternative weeklies here in town and for good reason. I was really impressed. They are also a four-piece band that you could classify in the genre of pop rock. Of all the bands I saw this weekend, Stereo Deluxe had one of the more memorable and marketable sounds. I picked up their debut CD for five bucks at the show and I have enjoyed it for the past few days. They are definitely worth checking out and they definitely have the goods to become more than just a household name in the Circle City. Stereo Deluxe will be doing a free show here in Indy at the Rib America Fest on September 1, 2006 at 5PM.

Brick and myself headed to the Vogue around eleven. The Friday line-up featured two of metro Indy’s most lauded up and coming bands: The Elms and Virgin Millionaires. The Elms took the stage before Virgin Millionaires making the latter the headliner for the night.

The Elms are from Seymour, Indiana and although they are actually from an hour South of Indianapolis, the city has seemingly adopted them as their own. They are a four-piece band whose debut CD, “The Chess Hotel” was released by Universal South records just a few months ago. I had a chance to listen to their debut and found myself initially indifferent to the music. However, you never really can appreciate a band until you see them live and I am happy to report that the same holds true for The Elms. Their set was lively and much more bluesy than I had caught on my initial listening of their CD. The Elms were also the nicest band I have ever seen live. They were very interactive with the crowd with the singer speaking with the crowd after every few songs. When the signer had a chance to speak to the crowd, he constantly thanked them for coming out and supporting them. At one point the singer indicated that he and the band were going to shake hands with every person in attendance after their set. Although my handshake never came, I don’t doubt that the band at least made the effort.

Virgin Millionaires finished the night at the Vogue. I again found myself not overly impressed with their music but you cannot deny their popularity. The Vogue was full once they began their set and it was clear from the interaction of the crowd with the band’s music that they were familiar with the band’s work.

On Saturday I had planned on checking out the line-up at Birdy’s. I was joined my long time friend and fellow Delaware County success story, Titan, at seven in the evening.

Once we arrived at Birdy’s, it was apparent that we were in for an intimate setting. At seven there were only about ten people in attendance. The first band of the evening put on an inspired set in spite of the small audience. Evansville’s Lost Anthem played a forty minute set. Lost Anthem is a five piece band that various web sites I found before I went to Birdy’s indicated were a Christian rock band. I couldn’t make that out from their lyrics. The lead singer indicated because of the few people there they were going to try out some new songs for only the second time live. Each song really sounded good and although the band could consider adding a little diversity from song to song, these guys have a lot of potential.

Before Titan started asking what the hell I had gotten him into I took a preemptive strike and we moved on to Broad Ripple. We went to various venues in Broad Ripple trying to take in as many bands as we could before we ventured back to Birdy’s. The best band I saw in Broad Ripple that evening was Nashville, Tennessee’s The Comfies. I really liked this band and their sound. They also strike me as a band that people will be familiar with real soon.

Titan and I headed back to Birdy’s at about ten to see the rest of the performers. I was happy to see when I first entered the crowd had increased to around a hundred. After we arrived at Birdy’s, Cincinnati’s Peter Adams took the stage. Their web site says they are “violin soaked punk rock”. I really don’t know what the hell that means but the music itself was captivating and mellow. The next band of the night, and featured on Torpor last week, was Bel Auburn. Bel Auburn are band out of Ashland, Ohio and their sound, like Peter Adams, was very melodic. The highlight of the evening, and one of the best songs I got exposed to all weekend, was their first song of the night: Metropolitan (watercolor). If you haven’t had the chance to download this song from this web site, do so. There is not a better song on the radio right now, terrestrial or not. Although the band put on a memorable performance, their show was a little slowed down by the constant changing of various industrial instruments. The band might also consider a little more interaction with the crowd. For most of the night the band, except the singer, had their back turned to the audience while performing. This was not lost especially on Titan, who has been a member of bands since his teens.

Although both Peter Adams and Bel Auburn put on great performances, the next band, Hero Pattern, was just what Titan and I needed to pick up the pace. New Jersey’s Hero Pattern put on the hardest performance of the night and instantly increased the energy of the crowd ten fold. They ripped through a 40 minute set impressively and were easily Titan’s favorite band of the night. The band also had an EP for five bucks available and I picked it up. The sound quality of the EP doesn’t do the band justice based on what I saw live, but was still a good pick up.

The last band I saw at MMS was Indianapolis’ own Loretta. I really liked this band. It is very hard to describe their sound. It was clear that most of the crowd was there to see this band and for good reason. I can’t wait to see them again.

Every band I saw this weekend had the potential to make it into a music fan’s collective conscience. But if that moment never comes, don’t deprive yourself of the chance to see some great live music. What impressed me the most this weekend, other than the event itself, was how Indianapolis’ band stacked up with other bands through out the nation. And remember this, it is hard to determine exactly how a band goes from a local act to a national one, but I would gather every national act found themselves at one point or another playing for a few people in some bar in some town until their moment came.

--The Kid

Thursday, August 10, 2006

sitemeter fun vol. 3

I am the number five search for "is hookers cheating?"

If you have to ask, yes.

I am off to Toronto until Sunday.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

I haven't tried this, but one could have some fun with this site.

Call the future

If we could reduce the world’s population to a village of precisely 100 people, with all existing human ratios remaining the same, the demographics would look something like this.

We elected this idiot...twice

Former Ambassador to Croatia Peter Galbraith is claiming President George W. Bush was unaware that there were two major sects of Islam just two months before the President ordered troops to invade Iraq.

In his new book, The End of Iraq: How American Incompetence Created A War Without End, Galbraith, the son of the late economist John Kenneth Galbraith, claims that American leadership knew very little about the nature of Iraqi society and the problems it would face after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.

A year after his “Axis of Evil” speech before the U.S. Congress, President Bush met with three Iraqi Americans, one of whom became postwar Iraq’s first representative to the United States. The three described what they thought would be the political situation after the fall of Saddam Hussein. During their conversation with the President, Galbraith claims, it became apparent to them that Bush was unfamiliar with the distinction between Sunnis and Shiites.

Galbraith reports that the three of them spent some time explaining to Bush that there are two different sects in Islam--to which the President allegedly responded, “I thought the Iraqis were Muslims!”


Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Still Ridin' Dirty

My wife was finally able to speak to a live person at the BMV. We learned that although they cashed our check on July 19th, our renewal has not even been processed in the computer. In other words, we still do not have our renewal sticker and according to the BMV computer our plates are still expired. The BMV did fax us a form to show to the police should we get pulled over. It's good for 60 days. Hopefully by then we'll have our sticker and Joel Silverman will have been fired.

Monday, August 7, 2006

Bel Auburn

Bel Auburn is an indie rock band who will play this weekend's Midwest Music Summit here in Indianapolis. They are from Ashland, Ohio. Yeah, I've never heard it of it either, but apparently it's in Mid-Ohio. Don't hold this against them though as they have a great sound. You can listen to their release "Lullabies in A & C" here.

Suggested tracks are: Metropolitan(Watercolor)

Good Night


You can learn more about them at their myspace page.

Make sure you catch them Saturday night around 10:45 at Birdy's.

Friday, August 4, 2006

I'm ridin' dirty

Yeah, I'm ridin' dirty to Cincinnati this weekend. Okay, I won't have any contraband on me, but I will be driving on expired plates. We sent the check to the BMV by the July 15th deadline and they cashed it on the 19th, but I still haven't received my sticker for my plates. They are officially expired as of July 31st.

The Indiana BMV has been in a state of disaster ever since they tried to install new computer systems over the July 4th weekend. Governor Daniels has agreed to waive all fees for BMV customers and if I am pulled over in Indiana, I know the police will understand my situation. However, I am worried what an Ohio police officer might do. I'm not a big fan of police officers from the Buckeye State, so if I get ticketed maybe I'll just call on Mitch Daniels or Joel Silverman to bail me out.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Gas Tax, etc.

House Minority Leader B. Patrick Bauer: Suspend sales tax on gas. For once I agree with Speaker Brian Bosma that this is election year pandering. The gas tax repeal would only be a temporary solution. A real innovator might have come up with a mass transit plan or funding for alternative energy, but that is too much to expect from Bauer.

Please, welcome Jim of 11 am air raid back to blogging.

Guantanamo detainees may remain indefinitely: Gonzalez

Margot and the Nuclear So and So's are the featured download on along with this mini-review:

The Margot referenced in this band's name is, apparently, Margot Tennenbaum, which explains the Wes Anderson-y air of cute, aesthetically tidy melancholy. This song is certainly catchy -- I know, because I listened to it just once about a week ago, filed it under "maybe," and this morning woke up to find the opening phrase unexpectedly and persistently stuck in my head.

An actual headline from Yahoo News: Heavy people may collapse more in heat No kidding.

Hace 6 meses que apriendo espanol. I will be gone for six weeks starting in October for a Spanish immersion program. The last four weeks will be spent in Mexico. If anyone wants to guest blog, let me know. The Kid can't handle it himself while I am gone.

Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Archie Bunker would be proud

An actor, a Governor and an Indiana Mayor offer their own perspective on political correctness.

Mel Gibson was arrested last weekend for driving under the influence in California. He was arrested by a Jewish police officer and reportedly stated "The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world, are you a Jew?"

This is not the first he has drawn the attention of the Jewish community. Mel Gibson's father has stated the holocaust was exaggerated. His film The Passion of the Christ was accused by some of being anti-semitic.

Oh, and just to show he is an equal opportunity offender--he called the responding female officer "sugar tits".

In Massachusetts, Governor and (possibly former) Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney referred to Boston's Big Dig project as a "tar baby". Now, the American Heritage definition of tar baby is "A situation or problem from which it is virtually impossible to disentangle oneself." It has also gained a second meaning as a racial slur. White House spokesman (and former Fox Newsman) Tony Snow learned this the hard way last May.

Finally, we turn to Indiana and Greensburg Mayor Frank Manus. Manus has been thrust into the spotlight since Honda decided to build a large factory in the small southeastern Indiana city. Greensburg was formerly known as a "sundown town"*, which in the late 19th and 20th century basically meant no non-whites after dark. Bloomington Times Herald columnist mentioned this legacy to Mayor Manus and asked him whether they'd strive to hire a racially diverse workforce. Mayor Manus responded, " I think there might have been something way back when, but, hell, we don’t have anything like that now. We have several colored people who live in the city.”

Wow, I admit my 85 year old grandmother still uses "colored". She doesn't mean anything by it, but then again, she's not the Mayor of a city where a company owned by "colored" folks decided to invest millions of dollars.

The mayor has since sort of apologized for his remarks.

*One infamous sign was Hawthorne, California's which read "N---r, Don't Let The Sun Set On YOU In Hawthorne" in the 1930s. A selected list of former sundown towns in Indiana are Bloomfield, Dugger, Mooresville, Oolitic, Orleans, Paoli, Spencer and Worthington. For more information read James Loewen's Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism
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