Monday, September 11, 2006

New blog stuff

I've been poking around this weekend for ways to tweak my blog and launch it into the upper echelon of the blogoshere. Two things stand in my way: a general sense of apathy, and the fact that I don't know how to do anything of merit. Anyway, here are some resources that I think would be really cool if I could figure out how to integrate them in this blog:

Radio Blog - It's an embedded music player that actually looks and feels very nice. If only I could get it to work...

Blog Tutorial - This page has some general tips on creating a successful blog along with some really helpful and interesting links for designing, creating, and personalizing your own blog templates.

Figure these out and help me...

Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs

Chuck Klosterman's book, Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs, is quite an enjoyable read. I recommend it highly. Here's some excerpts that I particularly enjoyed:

"The twenty-three questions I ask everybody I meet in order to decide whether I can really love them:

1. Let us assume you met a rudimentary magician. Let us assume he can do five simple tricks - he can pull a rabbit out of a hat, he can make a coin disappear, he can turn the ace of spades in the Joker card, and two others in a similar vein. These are his only tricks and he can't learn anymore; he can only do these five. HOWEVER, it turns out he's doing these five tricks with real magic. It's not an illusion; he can actually conjure the bunny out of the ether and he can move the coin through space. He's legitimately magical, but extremely limited in scope and influence. Would this person be more impressive than Albert Einstein?"

and on sugary cereals:

"An inordinate number of cereal commercials are based on the premise that a given cereal is so delicious that a fictional creature would want to steal it. We are presented with the scenario time and time again. The most obvious is the Trix Rabbit, a tragic figure whose doomed existence is not unlike that of Sisyphus. Since its inception, the rabbit --often marginalized as 'silly'-- has never been allowed to enjoy even one bowl of his favorite foodstuff, and the explanation for this embargo smacks of both age discrimination and racism (we are to accept that Trix is reserved exclusively 'for kids').

An even sadder illustration of cereal segregation is Sonny the Cuckoo Bird, arguably the most tortured member of the advertising community. Sonny is plagued with self-loathing; though outspokenly otaku for Cocoa Puffs, he doesn't feel he deserves to consume them. Sonny will do anything to escape from his jones, including (but not limited to) locking himself in a primitive sky cycle and shooting himself into outer space. To make matters worse, he is bombarded by temptation: Random children endlessly taunt him with heaping bowls of C-Puffs, almost like street junkies waving heroin needles in the face of William S. Burroughs. The kids have cereal, and Sonny does not... And as long as they possess what [Sonny] does not, [he] shall remain a second-class phoenix, doomed by his own maniacal ambition for breakfast."

An amalgamation of oddities

As there is no incredibly superlative event to focus my daily witticism, I fully expect this entry to be rather unfocused and (I'll just come out and say it) weak. So, Reader, be prepared.

Yesterday I drove home to Marietta to pick up my new (or at least new to me ) Mac. Now it is important to note that I have absolutely no experience with Apple computers, outside of owning an iPod which has inexplicably disappeared. I bought this slightly outdated Mac on mere whim and a friend's rather fanboy-esque assurances. So I get my Mac and get over the initial ooh's and aah's and that is when it hits me: I don't know what the hell I am doing. Not in the slightest. I start up my new, undeniably sleek, aesthetically pleasing computing machine and I have no idea what to do.

So I did what most people would do in my situation: go out and buy more stuff. It's the common answer whenever we come to any sort of brick wall. Whether it is a physical limit (when you can't lose enough weight, buying a gym membership) or an intellectual one (An Idiot's Guide to Anything), our answer is buying something, whether it be product or service. This is why, five minutes after arriving at my house, I hop in my car again and drive to my own personal Mecca: Best Buy.

I don't understand the typical female desire for garment shopping. I just don't enjoy shopping for clothes. If I had a choice between a full day of shopping, and oh, falling down the last 10 stairs in my apartment, I'd probably choose shopping. But it'd be close. Very close.

I think Best Buy is the guy's Victoria Secret. Now, I realize that this probably isn't a woman's favorite place to shop, however this is where I like to think women joyously go to spend entirely too much money on daring lingerie. Besides, this is my metaphor; indulge me. Best Buy is where we go when we need a emotional, physical, or mental pick-up ("we" here means the entirety of the male gender). We make pilgrimages to Best Buy to buy the male equivalent [edit: The author feels that this metaphor has been taken slightly too far and would rather not discuss what was about to be said. Non-Sequitor.]

But Best Buy failed me! They didn't have any Mac stuff at all: no Airport cards for wireless Internet, no Apple software, not even and Mac-compatible DVD-drives. I was profoundly disappointed, but my spirits rose. There are plenty of computer stores in and around the Marietta area, I rationalized. So I left the Best Buy marginally hopefully. My hopes were soon dashed at CompUSA, and even further by MicroCenter. Nothing I was looking for was to be found.

I returned home rather dispirited, not having any really "wicked Mac apps" in which to play with. I have been forced to order everything online which will most likely delay my exuberance another week.. Drat and double drat. Well, at least I'll have Chess to keep me company.

Pawn to E-2.