Aug 20, 2014

Nicki Minaj Go Away.

I'm the first person to say that musicians are performers first and shouldnt be judged by the music they make. Mainly because of how it's typically heavy metal bands who take the brunt of people thinking bands that sing about cannibalism and satan are actually satanic cannibals.  Because usually they're just nerds. But this pop/hip hop trend of promoting drugs and sex with little to no artistry behind it really pisses me off.  No-talent hacks can get into a studio, squeal about how awesome it is being a horrible person into a microphone over samples of music from real artists with off the shelf beats put on top of it and then autotuned with robot voice and become a role model to the youth.

Maybe it's just the [almost] 40 year old in me but I'm really embarassed to be a human when shit like this is allowed to exist.  Someone posted the latest video from Nicki Minaj entitled Anaconda. Probably NSFW. 


Minaj, of whom I've only known of as a flashy dim-witted performer who somehow had the credentials to be a voice of reason to aspiring singers on American Idol last season.  After seeing this video I've come to the realization that she is a shit stain in the underwear of music. Part of the aforementioned ilk of pseudo-music. How in the holy fuck she got to be a judge on a singing competition is beyond me.

The whole basis of this "song" is stolen from Sir Mix A Lot. She needs to go away. This song is the super literal, spelled out, non-clever message of the original.  Baby Got Back was  pretty raunchy for it's time but it never crossed the line. It was full of innuendo and creative poetry. This is a giant turd-fest rip off from a coked out idiot.  The thing is also, this song or video isnt that shocking.  2LiveCrew was doing this (before anyone) and taking the heat for it back in the early 80s when she was still shitting her pants. Also other female rappers have done the whole over-the-top sex music too.   So nothing groundbreaking here.

Here's the lyrics. Sir Mix A Lot sampled lyrics have been crossed out. Also the music for the whole song is taken right from Baby Got Back.
My anaconda don'tMy anaconda don'tMy anaconda don't want none unless you got buns, hun 
Boy toy named troy, used to live in Detroit
Big dope dealer money, he was getting some coins
Was a shooter with the law, but he live in a palace
Bought me Alexander McQueen, he was keeping my stylish
Now thats r-r-real, gun in my purse, bitch I came for us to kill
Who wanna go first? I had them push daffodils
I'm high as hell, I only took a half of pill
I'm on some dumb shit
By the way, what he say?
He can tell I ain't missing no meals
Come through and fuck em in my automobile
And I'm hitting it with his girls, and he telling me to chill
And he telling me it's real, that he love my sex appeal
Say he don't like em boney, he want something he can grab
So I pulled up in the Jag, and I hit em with the jab like
My anaconda don'tMy anaconda don'tMy anaconda don't want none unless you got buns, hunOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her buttLook at her butt (look at her butt) 
This dude named Michael used to buy motorcycles
Dick bigger than a tower, I ain't talking about Eiffel
Real country ass nigga, let me play with his rifle
Pussy put his ass to sleep, now he calling me NyQuil
Now that bang bang bang, I let him hit it cause he slang cocaine
He toss my salad like his name Romaine
And when we done, I make him buy me romaine
I'm on some dumb shit
By the way, what he say?
He can tell I ain't missing no meals
Come through and fuck em in my automobile
And I'm hitting it with his girls, and he telling me to chill
And he telling me it's real, that he love my sex appeal
Say he don't like em boney, he want something he can grab
So I pulled up in the Jag, Mayweather with the jab like
My anaconda don'tMy anaconda don'tMy anaconda don't want none unless you got buns, hunOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her buttLook at her butt (Look at her butt)My anaconda don'tMy anaconda don'tMy anaconda don't want none unless you got bunsm hunDon't don't don't, my anaconda don'tDon't want none unless you got buns, hunOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her buttOh my gosh, look at her but 
(now she's just talking, sounds like she's high/drunk as fuck. Not even singing or rapping)
Yeah, he love this fat ass
Yeah, this one is for my bitches with a fat ass in the fucking club
I said, where my fat ass big bitches in the club?
Fuck the skinny bitches, fuck the skinny bitches in the club
I wanna see all the big fat ass bitches in the motherfucking club
Fuck you if you skinny bitches WHAT?
I got a big fat ass
Come on
Again, I'm all for freedom of expression and artistry but I see none of that here or in many of the songs in this vein that have gotten heavy radio play in the last...shit, 15 or so years. I'm mostly I think, more than this song or the genre, I'm angry that I live in a world where this is actually popular and people buy it.    Am I taking this song too literally? Is she playing a role? Is she writing about someone else? Is she making a statement?  I highly doubt it.  Much like country music songs about trucks and beer, there is no metaphor for something more profound.  I'm 100% sure this song is about fucking drug dealers because they have lots of money and celebrating having a big ass. 

Apparently Sir Mix A Lot is into this song and Minaj. ....After all he likes big butts right?  I guess I'm just not from that world and I'll never understand. 

Aug 10, 2014

The Best Root Beer I Ever Had


Here's a little anecdote about root beer I'd like to share.  The best root beer I ever had was very random. Maybe even where my love/obsession for root beer may have started.  It was at a little shit hole restaurant near Fishermans Wharf in San Francisco that isn't even there anymore. I think It's a Walgreens now actually.  I used to work down there in like 98/99 and went into this place for lunch once.  It was like going back in time. This place had a serious nautical/pirate theme. Everything was wood. Old, dark wood with dusty fishing nets and ropey decorations. Like Spongebob meets Texas Chainsaw Massacre.  I wouldn't be lying if I said there was a definite off vibe about this place. A creepy feeling like you were somewhere you didn't belong.  It was right off the main tourist trap row so why was I creeped out? But it was 12:30 in the afternoon, where was everyone?  

I think I went in kind of craving 7-up or Sprite but the only person that seemed to be there working or not, an older rough looking male bartender said all they had was cola or root beer.  I knew for sure I didn't want cola so I went for the root.  It was slightly warm actually and served in a little glass with no ice. I was kind of pissed at the time that there was no ice in it and the glass was tiny and it was probably going to cost me $2. I shut the fuck up though because the guy serving it was a surly old salty sea dog looking guy who looked like he did not want any guff from some punk kid web designer.   I take a sip. It was lightly carbonated.. probably just flat from the CO2 cartridge in the machine being low or something. But for whatever combination of accidental reasons, it was the most delicious root beer I'd ever had in my life. Sweet, creamy, just enough snap from the root flavor.  I think I went back again but they had just gotten new soda machines with all Pepsi or Coke products and it was never the same. It was like magic for one brief moment.

Anyway,  the next time you're served a so-called gourmet root beer and they bring you a glass with ice and a straw; say "what the fuck is this shit?"  flip the serving tray over abruptly with your open hand spilling crappy root beer on the server in the process. Then flip the table over as you storm out screaming obscenities.  But if it's a salty pirate motherfucker who's probably been drunk since 9am...shut the fuck up and drink it. it might be the best thing you've ever had.

An Education in Root Beer Etiquette

Here's a little education on what I was trying to explain in a previous post. Well said by the folks at the Think Food Thoughts blog.  Here's their post "Enjoy root beer the right way"

http://thinkfoodthoughts.com/how-to-eat/drink-root-beer-the-right-way/

When I see root beer offered on a menu in Singapore, I always ask, “Is it served with ice?”
I already know the answer, but still I ask, in the hope that someone will give me the right answer, and I can have the pleasure of enjoying a root beer at a cafe.
A frosted mug of root beer
A frosted mug of root beer in an air-conditioned room
A long time ago, when A&W could still be found on our sunny shores, they showed us the right way to have root beer – in a frosted mug, no ice – until they decided they weren’t a family restaurant, but a fast food chain and went with disposable cups.
Why is it so important that root beer is served in a frosted glass without ice?
When cold root beer meets frosted glass, the drink starts to foam and this amazingly thin layer of icy slushy root beer forms along the surface of the glass.
To me, this creates the smooth, creamy, viscous, rich texture that I associate with root beer.
Ice cubes only melt and dilute the drink, made even worse when root beer at room temperature is poured into a glass of ice cubes. What you get is this thinned out watery insipid drink.
Icy slush on the inside surface of the glass
Observe how little icicles have formed on the inside surface of the glass
In the photo above, you can see how the melting icicles also contribute to the thickness and foaminess of the root beer. In the top right corner, see how slush has formed at each new level after sipping.
Root beer is a G-rated beer that the whole family can enjoy. So like beer, it must be poured at an angle, giving it a good head, and drunk straight from the glass, not a straw.
So simply, the rules of drinking root beer are:
  • Root beer cold from fridge
  • Cold glass
  • No ice
  • No straw
So we can’t get root beer the right way, we have to do it ourselves, at home.
To do that, you need:
  1. Freezer with space for your drinking vessel(s) of choice
  2. Fridge with space in the coldest section for a bottle of root beer
  3. A table very near the freezer
  4. Patience
  5. A cloudy day (optional)
  6. A room with air conditioning, but no fan (the room is optional, but the fan is not)
Patience: Because after you buy root beer, you have to wait at least 24 hours to get your glass prepped and the root beer cold.
A cloudy day is best and related to point (3), because when it’s too hot, or the glass out too long, the glass loses it’s frostiness. Also, remember to set your freezer to the coldest setting. Try not to open the freezer or adding unfrozen things.
Here is a photo that I had to re-take after I forgot to turn off the flash. You can see how fast our local weather has melted the frost. In contrast, the first photo in the post was taken in an air-conditioned room.
Photo to show how quickly a frosted mug loses its frosty-ness in local weather
Within seconds, our frosty glasses are sweating
If there is a fan in your room, turn it off. Any windy draft also decreases the frostiness of the glass.
Okay, here’s my secret to helping the glass stay cool.
Before you put the glass into the freezer, put it a little bit of water. A very tiny little bit. If it looks like there is very little water, try and pour out more. Remember ice expands. You really only want a tiny bit that will help the drink freeze on contact (remember the slush?) and not enough to dilute it in any discernible way.
Frozen root beer at the bottom of glass
Frozen root beer at the bottom of glass
I don’t recommend a thick piece of ice at the bottom of the glass (see photo below) because if you like to sip your drink, the ice will eventually melt and float up, destroying the drink.
Ice frozen at the bottom of the glass
This is way too much ice
I believe you will find this method elevates even the most ordinary root beers.
Happy eats!
 

Aug 9, 2014

I'm Still 'Meh' For Video Games

I watched a bunch of Conan O'Brien Clueless Gamer videos on youtube.  Basically him playing hot new video game titles and reviewing them. But he's like me, he doesn't play or really understand any of them.



What I got from this was not only great comedy from Conan but I also got to see what all these new video games look like compared to what I last saw which was basically GTA3 and Tony Hawk Pro Skater in like 2002.

in over 10 years I was surprised to see that the graphics aren't really that much better. Not necessarily the graphics but the movements and animation of playing the games. Everything really seems stiff, like you're controlling a digital action figure.  Overall nothing I saw really made me want to play video games again.

Meh  :-\

Aug 5, 2014

Root Beer Fail

Side note, our food came 50 minutes after taking this photo.
My friend's food was cold so he sent it back. I was hungry as fuck
so I ate my soggy fries and lukewarm cheeseburger anyway.
If you've been with the Noggins for a while, you know that I'm kind of a Root Beer aficionado.  Tonight at dinner with some friends I had my second encounter with the dreaded Bundaberg Root Beer.

I had originally asked for Dr. Pepper, and she said no, but they have Root Beer. Excellent, I secretly wanted Root Beer the whole time but for some reason changed my mind last second. Because I'm indecisive because I'm a Libra.

As she brings out my root beer I notice that it's bottled and not from the fountain which means no refills but being that it's from a bottle usually means it's going to be better than the norm.  I recognise the bottle as one I'm familiar with and its the most disgusting root beer I've ever had. Bundaberg root beer is awful. It's sour and tastes rotten.

So not only is it Bundaberg, there's a glass full of ice coming out with it.   Here's the thing about quality root beer;  it's not supposed to over ice, but it's also not supposed to be tepid and never warm.  Frosty mug or a cold bottle only. What if a bartender gave you a warm beer and a glass of ice? Yea. Not cool. Root Beer (unless it's Mug or A&W or something from the fountain) is not soda. and it not to be treated as such. Since it's bottled I think at least it came out of a refrigerator of some kind to keep it cold.  I pick up the bottle and its warm. Not just room temperature warm, but warm like it was next to the heat lamps for 5 minutes.  What's worse than Bundaberg Root Beer?  Fucking warm as fuck Bundaberg Root Beer.  It kind of tastes like someone barfed in it.

Major root beer fail. What a disappointment.

Aug 3, 2014

Slipknot


Who remembers the first time they experienced Slipknot?  I mean, before anyone really knew wtf they were. 

I remember one late spring day sitting in my cubicle reading reviews for upcoming albums on theprp.com and came across this band called Slipknot. Not expecting much I read the review about this masked nonet of heavy music. Needless to say my curiosity was peaked.  I marked the release date of the forthcoming debut album on my calendar and a few months later I went and picked it up on my lunch break, hot off the presses.  When I got back to work I put in headphones and shit my pants with every track. There had literally been nothing like that that I'd ever heard before.

A little while later I saw them live when they came to San Francisco and again, blown the fuck away.

It's too bad they've become kind of a cliche of themselves since those early days and their fans have become somewhat of an army of Mall Rat Jugglaos. Their music just doesn't have the same edge it once did. That first album was magic in a bottle. That doesn't happen too often. 



Aug 1, 2014

Awesome. a poem by Kirk Shelton


I got my girlfriend a new Toshiba laptop for xmas from Staples. 

She was too busy with her job at the time to set it up. 
Finally in March she decides to use it for work. 
The one thing she absolutely needed it for was to play DVDs for work. 
Reason for buying new laptop for her was because her 6 year old Dell laptop DVD player stopped working. 
The irony, first time she tries to play a DVD the drive will not read any disks.  


Awesome.

Not a CD, not a DVD, not a data disc, nothing. Device manager says everything is fine. 

I try to troubleshoot via the internet but since it's brand new nothing really seems to apply. 
I purchased the Staples coverage so I took it back there.  
I was passed the 14 day return period and they said since it was not working when I got it I had to call Toshiba.

Awesome!


Thanks Staples, thanks for absolutely nothing. 

So I put it in a drawer until yesterday because we have both been busy. 
I called Toshiba who must be an Indian company, and they said they have to troubleshoot it over the phone to determine if its software or hardware. 

But my free phone support period has ended and that this phone call was going to cost me $30.  

Awesome!!


So we determine that it's hardware.

He then asks me if the computer has been dropped.  
Sure as hell not by me. 
He says that if it's determined that the damage was caused by accident or misuse or improper handling that I'd be responsible for the cost of the repair and diagnostic. 

Awesome!!!


Whatever, so I go ahead with the WARRANTY repair claim. 

I find out that it's going to cost me another $30 to ship it to them to repair it. 

Awesome!!!!

So far this "warranty" has cost me close to $100 and I'm still not confident that it will be repaired or that I wont have to give them more money. 

Awesome!!!!!




Jul 30, 2014

Pacifica Pizza Breadsticks -Don't Fuck With The Classics Part VII -

They're supposed to look like this but much greasier and
wrapped in tin foil. 
There's a pizza place back in my hometown of Martinez CA, Pacifica Pizza. I grew up on this place. I've known many people who've worked there over the years. It was never really great but a good pizza that was consistent.  About 6 years ago (2008) I moved to Pittsburg CA and had to find a new local pizza spot.  Every time I was back in town every so often we'd at least get some of the famous Pacifica breadsticks.  If you've been around Martinez for a while you know the ones. The foil brick of garlic parmesan sticks you could only get from Pacifica.  Side note tho, a couple times we DID get pizza and sometimes it was really good, and sometimes it was really undercooked and doughy. But this review is about bread sticks. 

About a year and half ago I moved to Eureka Ca. and had almost forgotten all about Pacifica and their bread sticks.  Recently I was back home in Martinez and thought he bread sticks!  So I called down the street and ordered a large breadstick order.  

While delicious, they were NOT supposed to
 look like this. 
15 minutes later I go down there to pick them up and they give me a pizza box.  I was like WTF is this?  There's two pimply teenagers working there and they say this is what I ordered.. cheesy bread sticks.  

I went on to explain to him what they're supposed to be. Little sticks of dough coated in garlic butter and sprinkled with parmesan cheese then wrapped in big bundle in foil.  He didn't know what the fuck I was talking about but the other kid was like "Oh yea Chucky or whoever (who is an older employee that remembers the old bread sticks. I made up the name Chucky) made them once"  Apparently this place has changed owners a bazillion times since I went there last and some moron thought that making bread sticks like every other pizza place in the world would be better than actually having a good and unique product. The kid was like "these are good I promise" and I replied "I'm sure they are, that's why every other pizza place makes them this way"  and left disappointed.  They were good, but totally not what I wanted. Every bite tasted like lack of nostalgia. 

Maybe Marty O's Pizzeria can put them on their "Martinez Classics" menu with the empanadas. If anyone knows why they decided to change this I'm curious to know. 

Jul 29, 2014

Nothing Lasts Forever, Even Cold November Rain


By Cold November Rain, I mean Axl Rose. 

I was flipping channels today and landed on something I didn't know existed called The Golden God Awards. I caught it at the tail end but from what I could tell it's some VH1 Classic awards show for burnout metal heads from the 70's and 80's. Like a low budget Grammy's for Butt Rock.  I caught it just as Axl Rose was accepting the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award.  Presented to him by none other than Nicolas Cage who went into a heartfelt obviously read-from-a-teleprompter [because he fucked up and pronounced the word passion; "paSSun"]  dedication saying how he's been inspired by the honorable Mr. Rose over the years. The award presentation was followed by a performance by the "new" G&R. They did Sweet Child 'O Mine and Paradise City.  It was pretty painful to watch.



Axl was fat, old and out of breath halfway through the song.  He was very out of key and his voice is ruined from drugs, cigarettes, booze and scream-singing improperly for so many years. It reminded me of the voice of that 70 year old lady in front of you in line at the gas station ordering a pack of Camel non-filters.

 The band, which is now essentially a Guns N' Roses cover band consisting of professional musicians, was clearly struggling to follow Axl's forgetting how the songs go. Being a drummer myself I was noticing the drummer's closed-eyed focus. That's the focused look you get when you're trying to stay on tempo while you have a click track (metronome) in your in-ear monitors, that's fighting against a band member who's playing the song wrong.  It's as if they all rehearsed the songs thoroughly, and Axl just showed up the night-of and was like "I'm fucking Axl fucking Rose. I've been singing these songs for 30 fucking years I don't need to fucking practice"

At least he didn't have corn rows.

Jul 24, 2014

STRAINing to watch any more of The Strain

So I've watched the first two episodes of The Strain on FX.  The previews for this show looked awesome and to be honest some of the themes and visuals are paying off but the show is just totally stupid. Here's a short list of stuff that is so dumb I just cant continue to care about this show.

1. Why quarantine the survivors, lock down the plane but put the cargo in some random warehouse. Even after you saw the glowing mystery substance all over the cargo hold where it seemed to emanate from. And then see a giant mystery death coffin thing and not use any kind of protective suit or anything.

2. The bodies.  see #1.  No one knows wtf the sickness is but they're all dead so they're not able to spread the sickness. No worries just take them to the normal morgue down town with the rest of the stiffs. no security, no concern about contagens.  blah.

3a. The bureaucracy and overtly careless and inefficient management of the CDC and Health and Human Services.  It makes them look like idiots.

3b. The part when the lawyer somehow gets the head of whatever government agency to take the case away from the CDC because of a story about carbon monoxide or something.  SHOW THEM THE FUCKING WORMS! omg why dont you just show them the creepy worms you found.  not one mention of it.

4. The main character's family, and alcoholism.. unless it plays a very integral part of the plot line, I dont give a shit.

I'm sure there's more ... I'm over this stupid show. It insults my intelligence.  I wanted it to be something more I guess but it's turning out to be a badly written outbreak zombie vampire nazi show.