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As teenagers grow up a bit and enter the job market, they quickly develop progressive economic ideas: perhaps a bit of “levelling” seems pretty good when you’re staring up the professional ladder from the bottom rung. Meanwhile, their youthful live-and-let-live social philosophy begins to fade.
In their late 20s, they start making real money. Economic progressivism goes out the window, preferably out the window of a building with a doorman. As the adult mind turns to more material matters, social views don’t change that much.
Finally, after the mid-40s, retirement looms. Our former teenagers check their collective 401(k)s and think, you know what, let’s all get checks from the government. Social views take a hard turn for the more restrictive. At the end of the journey, economic and social views are again in agreement—only this time on the other side of the philosophical line! –“The Democrats are Doomed, or How a ‘Big Tent’ Can Be Too Big,” Christian Rudder, OKTrends
Sports fans, on the whole, are Republicans;
basketball fans, most of the time, are not, but the smart money says “Moose” Lewis leans right;
red, blue, the only color that matters to a sports oligarch is green
The song, with its distinctive cowboy-style syncopation, was written in 1966 by popular Soviet composer Arkady Ostrovsky. It wasn’t always wordless. In the original version, the lyrics told the story of a man, Johnny, riding his horse across the American prairie to his sweetheart Mary, who knits socks as she awaits his return. But Khil and Ostrovsky eventually decided that the suggestive lyrics were too “naughty” to pass Soviet censors and opted instead for the wordless version. Today, the singer says he can no longer remember the lyrics that once might have caused such a stir. –“‘Mr. Trololo’ Reflects on his Internet Success,” Claire Bigg, Radio Free Europe
You got a problem with The Homosexual Ghost? “Only the worst” fantasy book covers;
forget not Big Bear, hip-hop’s reigning king of album covers;
the worst movie + the worst rapper + Deion Sanders = the worst music video
Hootie and the Blowfish were America’s favorite bar band, its favorite college band, its favorite cover band. Their new songs—”Let Her Cry,” “Only Wanna Be with You”—were familiar tunes with no significant regional markings, which people could sing along with or easily ignore. And at the center of it all was Hootie, a man whose hammy baritone has made him the greatest wedding singer of our time.
Hootie didn’t wear a cowboy hat to the County Music Association Awards on November 11, 2009. That was probably a good choice, since the last time he donned one, publicly at least, was in a surreal 2005 Burger King commercial, in which he serenaded a TenderCrisp Bacon Cheddar Ranch sandwich to the tune of “Big Rock Candy Mountain.” That ad was the kind of easy parody of country music that would leave any serious fan of the genre doubtful of Hootie’s sincerity, or his sanity. Yet from the beginning of his genre-switch, Hootie has insisted that country is the last stop on his career trajectory. –“Hootie Populism: Darius Rucker is Country Music’s Newest Hit-Maker,” Ian Crouch, The Rumpus
More from Rafe Bartholomew:
On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in California’s ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as “invasive,” “exotic,” “alien” — all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species.
In his speech, Farmer dutifully highlighted these ugly attributes, but also quoted a few more positive remarks made by others over the years. This was a reckless move. A reference to the tree as “indigenously Californian” elicited an abusive roar, as did an observation that without the aromatic import, the state would be like a “home without its mother.” Thereafter, the mild-mannered speaker was continually interrupted by boos, groans, and exasperated gasps. Only when he mentioned the longhorn beetle, a species imported (illegally) from Australia during the 1990s with the specific aim of killing the eucalyptus, did he earn a resounding cheer.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A tourism company in Australia announced a service that will allow users to take the “world’s biggest selfies,” and a Texas man accidentally killed himself while trying to pose for a selfie with a handgun.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”