Monthly Archives: May 2009

kavya spells laodicean, wins spelling bee.

47187176Are you smarter than an 8th grade spelling whiz?  Could you spell the winning word?

Kavya Shivashankar, of Kansas, correctly spelled the world “laodicean” for the win last night in the Scripps Naitonal Spelling Bee.  You want to know something funny?  The top Google search right now is “definition laodicean”.  Well, here is what Dictionary.com has to say:

La⋅od⋅i⋅ce⋅an

–adjective

1. lukewarm or indifferent, esp. in religion, as were the early Christians of Laodicea.
–noun

2. a person who is lukewarm or indifferent, esp. in religion.
Origin:
1605–15; Laodice(a) + -an
Well DUH.

Here are some of the other final round words:  antonomasia, bouquiniste, oriflamme, guayabera, isagoge and sophrosyne, phoresy, menhir, maecenas, ophelimity, diacoele and reredos.

Never heard of those.

So Kavya gets $40,000 for being so awesome, and we all get to feel a little inept for the day.  Congratulations, Kavya Shivashankar!  The challenge now for everyone is spelling your last name!

[Posted by Kathleen]

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youtube clip of today: wearable towel.

The informercial madness continues.

WHAT IS SO DIFFICULT ABOUT USING A REGULAR TOWEL?!

Honestly, people.  How come everything needs to have arm holes now?  Our blankets, our towels.  What’s next?  Are we honestly that lazy?

And what would you say to someone if you saw them wearing a towel as a dress/toga in public?

[Posted by Kathleen]

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some quick thoughts on sonia sotomayor…

sotomayorAlright, I know.  It’s “old news” (old being about two days), but I still wanted to weigh in.

In case you haven’t heard, my boy Barack named Sonia Sotomayor as his nominee to replace David Souter on the Supreme Court.  First things first, how do you say her name?  Mallory tackled that one!  Click here.  And now, my thoughts.

I’ve had a few days to digest this now, and I must admit, I’m a little let down.  I see the pragmatism, but I don’t see the promise of change.  I was really hoping for a strong logical and liberal voice on the court, and it seems that we are getting a left-leaner.  So the court remains 5-4, but barely leaning left.

Her record on choice is thin, and while I’m sure she will uphold Roe v. Wade, I’d like to see someone on the court who has demonstrated more conviction in her career.  Sure, she saved baseball, but what about our reproductive rights?  Hopefully she bats lefty. (GET IT?! HA!)

GOP hip hop gangsta Michael Steele had this to say about her (from CNN’s Political Ticker):

Indeed, Steele was mild in his initial jabs, calling Sotomayor an “interesting pick” with “overwhelming political overtones to it.”

Funny, Michael Steele.  That’s what most people would say about you!  SNAP!  But quite bluntly, B played it safe with this one.  The GOP is searching for something to hold on to that justifies them not voting for confirmation, and the fact that nobody really knows anything about her is making their task more difficult.

From what I’ve read, Sonia Sotomayor is one heck of smart lady.  She has an inspirational story of success (the projects in the Bronx to a SCOTUS nomination) and has an excellent reputation as a judge.  She was first appointed to Federal District Court in New York by George H.W. Bush and the Court of Appeals by Bill Clinton, so she’s had bipartisan support in the past.  Not too shabby.  And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention she’d be the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice!  And just the third woman to ever sit on the bench.

I have no doubt in my mind that she will be a great judge, I was just hoping for a little more, I suppose.  I wanted him to make a statement.  Perhaps that’s for next time.  I trust you, B!

[Posted by Kathleen]

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auditions are over. next week, vegas!

so_you_think_you_can_dance

Hello, SWTCTW readers!  Here is Chris’ weekly SYTYCD update!

Mallory brought up an interesting point – which is that some people may not be familiar with the summertime awesomeness that is SYTYCD. I’m not really sure how this could be the case and I’m too frightened to explore the deep dark world in which this scenario could be possible. So, taking her hypothetical point to heart, I’ve prepared a quick tutorial based on the dancing kid video she posted last week.

During the first weeks of the show, we are entertained with audition footage from various locations around the country. (Please resist any obvious comparisons here to American Idol.) If they were to audition for the show, Mallory’s dancing kids – we will call them Suzy and Steve because Mallory once told me how much she likes those names – would have stood in line at one of the audition spots, awaiting their big break.  I think it is clear to all of us that Steve is really the shining star of the pair. Suzy is cut, her SYTYCD career is over. Now for Steve. He has got good musicality, but does he have what it takes to compete? Steve gets put in the choreography group to see if he can learn and perfect a routine with other dancers. He’s good, but I doubt we will be seeing him in Vegas. There’s not much for a 5-year old to do there anyway. That’s basically how the selection process works.

The four hours of SYTYCD we got this week marked the end of this audition process. Tyce Diorio is one of the judges for one of these auditions. Tyce is normally a choreographer for the show, and we saw this week that he is apparently a bitchy queen. You may think this is harsh, so to back myself up, cue bitchy queen montage (at exactly 30 seconds):

But enough about Tyce. One kid in the Los Angeles auditions named Nathan was probably one of the most impressive male auditions of the season. The problem: he is 17 and you have to be 18 to participate. The judges were so taken by his performance they gave him a ticket to Vegas for next season when he is eligible. Nathan was followed by a Stacy who literally danced like she had stuck her finger in an electrical socket. No ticket for Stacy. She should call Suzy to commiserate.

I will leave you all for this week with Sex. No, this isn’t a joke. And he was back this season as well… in a dance-off.

I realize there are no clips of good dancing in tonight’s post. Fret not, readers. We have an entire summer of SYTYCD watching together.

[Posted by Chris, via Kathleen]

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you say po-tay-to, i say po-tah-to.

I love Wonkette so much, as has been proclaimed many times on this here blog. Today, they helped me out by teaching me how to pronounce “Sotomayor” (who is Barry’s SCOTUS pick, by the way, since we were lazy and never posted about that). And then they wrote a fabulous article attacking some National Review douche who thinks, “Hey, why should we both trying to pronounce that Latina’s name the right way?” I’m posting the whole Wonkette article, because why not:

The National Review The Corner blog’s Mark Krikorian hears how the people on teevee are pronouncing Sotomayor — “Zo-toe-my-OR” — and he goddamn does not care for that at all, so he goddamn will not pronounce it that way, goddamnit, fuck you all, learn to speak English.

“But there ought to be limits,” he writes.

It Sticks in My Craw [Mark Krikorian]

Most e-mailers were with me on the post on the pronunciation of Judge Sotomayor’s name (and a couple griped about the whole Latina/Latino thing — English dropped gender in nouns, what, 1,000 years ago?). But a couple said we should just pronounce it the way the bearer of the name prefers, including one who pronounces her name “freed” even though it’s spelled “fried,” like fried rice. (I think Cathy Seipp of blessed memory did the reverse — “sipe” instead of “seep.”) Deferring to people’s own pronunciation of their names should obviously be our first inclination, but there ought to be limits. Putting the emphasis on the final syllable of Sotomayor is unnatural in English (which is why the president stopped doing it after the first time at his press conference), unlike my correspondent’s simple preference for a monophthong over a diphthong, and insisting on an unnatural pronunciation is something we shouldn’t be giving in to.

You and your THONGS. Pronouncing a proper noun in its natural Spanish way “is something we shouldn’t be giving in to.” How is this “giving in to” anything? It’s just saying a fucking word correctly. WAH WAH WAH. How does one pronounce “Krikorian” anyway? KRICK-WHORE-EE-NAZI… KRICK-DICK…KRIK-SHIT-WHORE-DONG… oh it’s too hard and unnatural, WAH, WAH, look at us crying now like babies, WAH WAH WAH, oh someone console us, pwease, WAH.

Let’s just call them both Hamburger SUV and get on with it.

I bet Kirkorian pronouces the l’s in quesadilla, too.

[Posted by Mallory]

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this kid so schools his sister.

This video, much like the So You Think You Can Dance videos that Chris just posted, is strangely mesmerizing:

Right? Like…does this kid just watch a lot of music videos? Do his parents teach him this stuff? Was he BORN with these skillz? We may never know the answers, but I just might swipe a few of his moves and add them to my dancing arsenal. (Ha ha, that was a joke. My dancing arsenal has only one move in it, and that is the Jump and Twist.)

[Posted by Mallory]

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i can dance, so i think.

so_you_think_you_can_dance

If everything goes according to plan, we’re going to have a weekly guest blogger give us a delightfully snarky recap of the night’s episode of So You Think You Can Dance.  Meet Chris.  He’s alright, I guess.  Chris’ interests include interpretive dance, paleontology, a nice boxed wine (red, of course), lounging by his soon-to-be-open pool in his surfer dude shorts and Six Words to Change the World.  What an introduction.  Anyway, Chris we’ll be keeping us posted on So You Think You Can Dance season 5.  And now, his inaugural post:

We’ve all been waiting for summer. Not for the warm weather. Not for the scantily-clad folks we see around town. Not because our apartment complex pool has opened. But because it marks the return of So You Think You Can Dance.

Hello SWTCTW! It’s Chris, your SYTYCD GB (guest blogger). That’s right. For the next however many weeks, I will be joining you on Thursday nights as your SYTYCD watch-party-guest-blogger-buddy, or SYTYCD WPBGB, as we say in the blogging biz.

I’m here for one reason – SYTYCD brings people together. Young and old, and even old and young. Minus Mary’s crazy screaming (there’s really no excuse for that nonsense), SYTYCD puts on TV the talent that we all think we possess at 12:30 a.m. on Saturday nights at the clubs (and P.S. I’ve seen the facebook pictures; we don’t really possess the talent).

I personally can’t wait for the episodes with the real dancing to start. Though I was a little offended by last night’s episode. Some of the moves they made fun of last night, I have spent weeks perfecting at the local bar…

And now, some clips from last season:

[Posted by Chris, via Kathleen]

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youtube clip of today: cat yodeling.

Cat people are SO WEIRD.  But let’s face it, sometimes really weird can be funny.  Happy Friday/start of a three day weekend, y’all!

[Posted by Kathleen]

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youtube clip of today: julia dales.

OH. MY. GOD.

Whatever competition this girl is trying to win, I hope she wins it.

Question:  How on earth do you realize you have that talent?!

[Posted by Kathleen]

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meaty business cards for carnivorous people.

Let me preface this by saying this was passed on to me by one of the manliest men I know.  RAWR!  Okay, now we can begin.

Meat lovers, rejoice!  Now you can integrate your carnivorous ways into the business world.  How, you ask?  BUSINESS CARDS MADE OUT OF BEEF JERKY.

I’m not making that up.

Here is a picture from their Web site, www.meatcards.com:

meatcardsHilarious and brilliant!  Here’s more from the Web site:

Screw die-cutting. Forget about foil, popups, or UV spot lamination. THESE business cards have two ingredients:
MEAT AND LASERS.

Unlike other business cards, MEAT CARDS will retain value after the econopocalypse. Hoard and barter your calorie-rich, life-sustaining cards.

MEAT CARDS do not fit in a Rolodex, because their deliciousness CANNOT BE CONTAINED in a Rolodex.

Now if only they could make business cards out of bacon…

[Posted by Kathleen]

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