Ninjas, taking back the streets!

What is the plural of "ninja" anyway?
What is the plural of "ninja" anyway?

I guess if you’re going to be a vigilante, then you may as well try to do it with a little style.

The Clifton police in New Jersey recently arrested a couple dudes who were dressed like ninjas and armed with “Asian martial arts weapons” while they were delivering warning letters to drug dealers and users.

It gets better. They claimed to be “Shinobi warriors”, and had knives, throwing stars, swords, nunchucks, and bow and arrows on them. They got charged with weapons possession and one of them was charged with leaving a harassing letter for his ex-girlfriend (if you’re going to be harassing drug dealers, then I guess you might as well get some personal grudges settled at the same time).

The letters stated that the “Shinobi will stop your cruel and sadistic intentions with justified yet, merciful force.” and accused the dealers with having “committed sin of passing impurity” to others and that the “wind guides us to those of impure heart and intent.”

Nerds with weapons. Wow. This could be an extremely entertaining trend. :)

Fashion gone berserk

Okay, this is just ludicrous.

Too lazy to paint a house yourself?
Too lazy to paint a house yourself?

That’s right kiddies, JCrew sells pre-paint stained jeans. For those people too lazy to paint a house, now you can look like you’ve actually been working too, but without all that pain in the ass “labor”.

I understood the patched jeans fad. The scuffed torn thing, I got. The wrong size thing was weird to me, and god help me I even understand stone-washed. But this is simply too far out there for me. Not because of the look, although they look terrible, but because of the price.

Those jeans cost $285.

That’s right. Take one $60-$80 pair of jeans, add $1 worth of white paint, and charge $285 for it.

Note the salesmanship tactics they use in the description. Emphasis is mine:

A hand-crafted collector’s item in authentic selvedge cotton denim from one of Japan’s oldest and most renowned mills. We spend hours on each pair to create a unique jean for the most discerning denim connoisseur, so we have only a handful available—and no two are quite alike. Each one is made with denim woven on the original 100-year-old narrow looms. Each pair is stonewashed, hand-distressed, hand-splattered with paint and hand-finished, giving it the kind of character only individual attention can impart. Button fly. Traditional five-pocket styling, with reinforced back pockets. Import. Machine wash. Catalog/jcrew.com only.

My questions about this copy are two-fold:

  1. Who the hell considers themselves to be a “discerning denim connoisseur”?
  2. I wonder if this sort of sales pitch really obscures the fact that you’re paying damn near $300 for a pair of pre-ruined jeans?

BBQ Festival

So I haven’t gotten around to writing in a while, but I have an excuse. I’ve been extremely busy.

Last week was the Memphis in May World Championship BBQ Festival. This year, I joined the Ques Brothers team instead of just going to their tent and mooching off them. What this meant was a fair amount of work building the booth/tent/location, eating a lot of BBQ, drinking a lot of frosty beverage, and even bartending for a night.

While I didn’t manage to get the quality of pictures that Paul did, I did manage to snap a few shots on my cell phone here and there. You can find them on my Facebook page. For Paul’s large, large number of pictures, check his PicasaWeb page. You’ll find several of me drinking, dancing, and debauching the nights away.

The important news is that the team won third place in the shoulder competition. I tasted a bit of this prize winning shoulder, and it was easily the best pork I’ve ever had. Amazing stuff. Our head cook, Willie, got 12th last year in his first year in the festival, and then moved it on up to 3rd in only his second year. This is basically unheard of. Many teams go for 10 or more years without breaking into the top ten. So, major props to the cook. And if you’re in Chicago, go try his restaurant and tell him the Ques Brothers sent you, and congratulate him on his victory.

One of my new favorite sites

Well, now that Paul has let the cat out of the bag on Garfield minus Garfield, I figured I’d post up a good one too.

Photoshop Disasters is a blog that has the latest and greatest advertisements which, through the horrifically poor use of software photo editing programs, made terrible, terrible blunders in their images. Some of them are subtle. Most of them are not. Most of them are, in fact, so bad that you wonder how anybody could miss them.

Been reading it for a couple weeks, and after looking at it, you kinda start to notice poor photoshoppery in everything you see. Walking around downtown and seeing advertising becomes a hilarious venture into the world of the insane.

Hey, it’s worth a look.

Terrorism, it's everywhere!

At what point did terrorism become the basis for all law enforcement?

I mean, when you see the Attorney General saying that software piracy and other IP related crimes fund criminal syndicates and terrorists, then you have to wonder if the government of our country isn’t off its meds or something.

If any future leaders of the world are reading this, let me remind you that the public is not stupid. People as a group can be completely idiotic, but individuals are generally relatively smart people with pretty good bullshit meters.

This sort of stuff flies perfectly well when you’re at a rah-rah rally sort of thing, because the mob mentality kicks in and people will cheer damn near anything at that point. But when your speech gets translated into text and shoved onto the internet, and individuals read it word by word, then they realize that you’re a complete jackass who either a) has no idea what the fuck he’s talking about or b) is just pandering to the group/mob mentality.

Is it really too much to ask for our leaders to actually have a clue as to what the hell they are talking about?

Too much sushi…

Is such a thing possible? Yes, it is.

Cali Lewis of GeekBrief.tv posted this the other day, and I just got around to noticing it:

http://icali.tv/sushi-for-everyone

I did this exact same thing the first time I went to BlueFin. Hey, we were ordering based on the pricing and not really reading it too closely. Me and Mike ended up getting sushi for like 8 people. So I feel her pain.

Nevertheless, I now want some sushi. Damn.

Garfield minus garfield

I’ve always known that Garfield comics were worthless, but I never would have thought of this. Brilliant.

http://garfieldminusgarfield.net/

Who would have guessed that when you remove Garfield from the Garfield comic strips, the result is an even better comic about schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and the empty desperation of modern life?

Friends, meet Jon Arbuckle. Let’s laugh and learn with him on a journey deep into the tortured mind of an isolated young everyman as he fights a losing battle against loneliness and methamphetamine addiction in a quiet American suburb.

Without the cat, this is more than a little disturbing...
Without the cat, this is more than a little disturbing...

Snacks are good!

Found this deal today while messing around on my daily reads: $20 off $50 at Amazon Grocery.

The gist of it is if you buy $50 worth of various Kellogg’s and other brand products from Amazon, then use the code KELLOGG1 at check out, they’ll cut $20 off the order. It’s also eligible for free shipping.

Now, Amazon’s bulk prices are not the best, but they’re not bad either. Plus there’s a lot of good stuff on this deal, such as various cereals and breakfast foods, assorted crackers, various types of cookies, etc. I bought some Mini Wheats (I love these in the morning), couple types of cookies, and Rice Krispie treats, for a total of $30.

The problem is Amazon’s organization. Finding what you want in smaller amounts (instead of gianormous bulk quanities) can be tricky. I suggest going to this page, clicking through to the type of thing you want, then sorting the resulting list by price (low to high). The smaller quantities are at the lower prices as well.

Spin the Wheel!

Went over to the Saucer last night to see my friend Aimee on Wheel of Fortune.

It was a lot of fun, they had reserved the entire beer garden section for the crowd and had the show up on the big screen above the stage. Despite the sound coming from one TV being out of sync with the main screen, it was still quite a good show. I was fairly shocked at the number of people there, it was in the 60+ range. Of course all her family was there, and several of the other teachers from her high school, I just wasn’t expecting that much of a turnout.

Of course, Aimee won, to the tune of $47,500. Which is great, because now she can’t be not telling us anything like she has been doing for the last 3 weeks. ;)

So congratulations, Aimee!

She was also interviewed on the news at 6pm, which was almost as entertaining as the show itself. I missed the interview at the time (arrived late), but my Tivo picked it up for me so I got to watch it this morning.

Afterwards, we had trivia night, which I unfortunately had to depart from early because I really was not entirely well yet. I’ve been sick all week, and though I was past most of it, the combination of two beers and the drugs I had taken was making me quite dizzy. So I went home and collapsed. However, I’m feeling much better this morning, if I could just get over this nasty cough.

On another topic, my dad sent me some pictures of the half-completed piano/bar cabinet that he’s building me, so it should be ready in another month or two. My condo is starting to look like somebody actually has a sense of taste. Well, okay, maybe not, but it’s slowly coming together. I’ll post some pictures of the half-built, but now painted, piano later.