Environmental Justice Is Civil Rights

The environmental movement began to take shape in much the same way as the Civil Rights movement – with people organizing because of obvious issues, like rivers so polluted they were literally catching on fire. After years of progress, we continue to fight against challenges that are harder to see – the long-term threats that climate change poses to our children and grandchildren, invisible toxins in our water and air, or disparities between rich and poor on the burden of environmental degradation.

…In the work ahead, environmental justice is a principle that will inform all of our actions. That’s because environmental challenges have the power to deny equality of opportunity and hold back the progress of communities. Because every community has a right to equal protection from their government. These are the very same battles that Dr. King fought, and the ones he would still be fighting if he were with us today.

Lisa P. Jackson, EPA – Remarks at EPA’s Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration

Read the rest of her remarks here


Posted in civil rights, environmental justice, martin luther king jr | Comments Off on Environmental Justice Is Civil Rights

The Future of Creative Writing

 

Inspiration is everywhere, but if you write about your life, make sure you’re consistent about the pseudonym.


Posted in Authors, Life | Comments Off on The Future of Creative Writing

Proud to be an American

The first thing I thought about this video is that its unbelievable. But it’s really not. Are we supposed to act surprised when people are racist because its 2012?

Of course you would not dwell on the President being shot. Why lose sleep over some darkie who has “done nothing for this country” when you have Wal Mart parking lots to hang out in and a free high school education provided by the government to not take advantage of. The best part of this whole thing is that the secret service actually thinks she’s a real threat. Can you imagine a van full of guys in suits and sunglasses following her down the Dairy Queen drive thru every night? Sitting outside her window as Denise and her friends take politics/dominate cheetos? But apparently she isn’t getting in any trouble. That’s a shame. I would like to see her ordered by a judge to unhook her Internet connection and have to read for a year. Or maybe her punishment was that they told her that the camera was off during that whole report. Bright red t-shirt, hair back, and no makeup. I mean she’s dumb but come on.

“So you equate the President with the N-Word”

“…..Sure”

At least she has the balls to write nigger on the Internet.

(Holy shit I can’t believe I just did)


Posted in american, dumb, nigger, obama | Comments Off on Proud to be an American

You suck if you don’t know…Beetlejuice

Why We Suck should be more than just a place to appreciate all of our shortcomings. It can be a place for valuable information, self-growth, and common sense. We feel the responsibility to transform you from an average sucky soldier to the asshole condescendingly judging others for not knowing something that you do. We can share everything you need to stay in the know, to get it.

That’s why we’re proud to bring you the first installment of “You suck if you don’t know…” featuring internet sensation and little person king Beetlejuice.

That’s a face only a mother can love. But then again, you probably only get that face if your mother loves crack so much that she still does it when she’s pregnant. I guess then it’s a face that only a mother can love because she’s high on crack, or something like that. Regardless, this is Lester Green,  better known as Beetlejuice. Beet is part of Howard Stern’s “Wack Pack” or essentially a group of people who would have been circus freaks and kept in cages with miniature ponies before feminists and virgins decided everyone else can’t enjoy those types of things. Instead the wack pack are featured on a satellite radio show with millions and millions of listeners. In terms of political correctness, The Wack Pack is the exact opposite of the term “intellectual disability.”

Side rant- Intellectual disability is so far from an accurate characterization of being retarded that it’s honestly more offensive. President Obama signed a law that replaced “mental retardation” with “intellectual disability” in all Federal statues. The fucking President had to take time away from killing terrorists and helping sick, poor, and- wait for it- actual retards to tell us we can’t say retard. Mentally challenged, developmentally challenged, special- when you hear these words in your head your just saying “Okay, I think he means retard.”  Retard is and always will be how we conceptualize these types of people. Using that word shouldn’t change how you treat them. Is it better to point and laugh at someone trying to scoop a whole jar of peanut butter in their mouth and scream “Look at that intellectually disabled person!” or should we take the time and speak with them and get to know them and let them know “Hey, you know what- you’re a pretty cool retard.”

Intellectual disability. Please. Retarded people aren’t intellectually disabled- people who sit in a room and think up names for retards are intellectually disabled.

Anyway. Beetlejuice. The best place to really appreciate his brilliance is on his Twitter page. Being 4 foot 3 inches and having a head the size of a half inflated balon are pretty good indicators that you can’t really do stuff normally. So Beet has a handler of sorts.  He drives him around, make sure he remembers how to breathe, feeds him, whatever he needs to not die basically. He also manages the Twitter feed because, believe or not, Beet cannot read or write or spell or remember his password. How it works is you tweet @beetlepimp asking a question for Lester’s handler to then go and ask Beet himself. Beetle responds and his answer is transcribed in words so beautiful I can see them compiled in some length almanac my great great grandchildren read the sparknotes for  summer reading.

The tweets are Internet gold. The misunderstandings, insults, sexual images are as plentiful as they are unbelievably hilarious. With nearly 43,000 followers you can feel comfort in knowing thousands of other people are laughing at a retard so it’s perfectly okay for you to also. Beet may take a few days off from the Twitter, but signing up for an alert to know when he’s back tweeting is the best way to get him to answer your question and never miss his nuggets of wisdom.

If you’ve liked what you’ve seen in these short clips and tweets, there are hours and hours of Beet footage online. Something about watching him try to reason through things is so mesmerizing. It’s like vicariously being on some mind-bending acid heroin meth crazy pills trip. I can’t think of anyone else I would want to be for a day. Sure Brad Pitt fucks Angelina Jolie and Derek Jeter plays in the World Series and also probably fucks Angelina Jolie, but I would want to be Beet. Thinking his thoughts. Feeling his feelings. Hanging out with other tards. Spend your day with Beet. Enjoy these videos-

*Personal favorite* This is a long  video of Beet trying to order chinese food. I’ve probably watched the whole thing in its entirety at least 4 or 5 times. Yes that means I suck for wasting an hour of my life on a video where no food is actually ordered or delivered. I don’t care, I could watch it everyday. Makes me think my life will never be complete until I have my very own Beet.

Show your friends Beet’s shit. Act surprised when they don’t know who he is so you seem cooler when you tell them all about him.

Send your submissions for You suck if you don’t know… to whywesuckblog@gmail.com or tweet @whywesuckblog


Posted in Beetlejuice, howard stern, Twitter, video, wack pack, You Suck if You Don't Know | Comments Off on You suck if you don’t know…Beetlejuice

Bibliopocalypse Bullshit

tumblr_m9emxmVRme1qz4txfo1_1280If you’re a literature lover, you’ve probably grown weary of false prophets proclaiming The End of the Book. It’s easy to shake your head and smirk at the world’s December 21st doomsday preoccupations, but rumors of the publishing apocalypse have bombarded the literary world for a long time now, and such discussions still make us tense with worry.

The Four Horsemen of the Bibliopocalypse came galloping down years ago. They rode their brimstone-snorting steeds with a blazing fury, each one more frightening then the last. First there was Radio, and then came Film, TV, and finally—that fearful, ever-morphing chimera, Internet.

Suddenly the nightmarish paranoia of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit-451 became depressingly naive: who would burn books if no one even bothered to read them?

As an undergraduate searching for a job in publishing, believe me—I’m nervous. In the months before Y2K, wild-eyed neurotics (including my fairly rational parents) stockpiled jugs of water, lined their pantry shelves with SPAM, and stacked sardine tins into squat, shiny pyramids. Our family probably had enough dried bean varieties to create a full-scale modge-podge of Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.

Who can blame them? Don’t we book lovers suffer similar hysterics when we hear prophecies of the literary end-times?

86201780337138019_8UEuU0ZF_cIf you’re panicky, like me, you just might be another juvenile, aspiring writer, terrified that you’ve missed out on the literary lifestyle you’ve idealized for the past two decades, ever since you mouthed your first intelligible word, “book.” You’re on the edge of tossing out your literary delusions and your late-night, idealism-soaked desires to write The Great American Novel. This very afternoon you’ll get serious! You’ll start submitting your sparse resumes and bland cover letters to the kind of respectable jobs your parents always wanted you to have. The kind of job that promises a stable family life and dental insurance. Imagine it, writer. You might be a lawyer. Or a banker. Or a consultant. You might be about to make yourself miserable for the rest of your life—but don’t do it. Not yet.

Then again, maybe you’re not a writer at all. Maybe you’re a reader. You won’t panic, but you’ll begin to feel nostalgia creeping over your skin, like lichen over an old gravestone. In a moment of introspection, you’ll consider how it must have felt to watch the first automobiles roll down a city street, how soon they would replace the carriages. Out of everyone, you would have been the one to miss the horses. You would have been the one to take giddy pleasure in stroking their velvet noses, in the hot flush of their breath against your palm. One day you’ll wander into a used bookstore, if that still exists where you live, and you’ll drift through the dusty quiet. The place has the hospice-ward hush of a nursing home. You’ll say hello to the books, touch your fingertips to the papery skin of their pages, and whisper kind, soft things into their yellowed spines. The books are frail strangers, but you think you might be able to save one, take one home and treat it gently. After all, it doesn’t have long for this world.

Hey, you. Stop. I meant it. Take a moment. Back up. Breathe.

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Feel better? I bet you don’t. But you should. I’ll tell you why.

Last week, Esquire columnist Stephen Marche claimed that we have come to “The Golden Age for Writers.” There are more options for writers now than ever before: tiny presses publish books that win major national awards, and self-publishing has become a viable and slightly-more-respectable option for aspiring authors. Marche even has the audacity to show us statistics that might make us writers (all terrible defeatists when it comes to our own monetary success) optimistic. People are actually reading these days, and they’re reading good books: “The percentage of Americans who told the National Endowment for the Arts that they read literature rose in 2008 (their most recent survey) by 3.5 percentage points to more than half the population — the first gain in twenty-six years.”

That’s a comfort for writers and booksellers, but readers have reason to clink champagne flutes, too. According to Marche, competition has sparked innovation:

“Go back and look at those old magazines and you will discover something shocking: They’re mostly boring; they’re also often just plain sloppy. With a few notable exceptions, almost every magazine in the world is in its best shape ever, right now. Good old-fashioned competition — from the Internet and the expanding marketplace — has forced them to improve. They’re better written. Vastly better designed. More entertaining. More accurate. Richer.”

See? I told you there was hope. We have better readers for our writers and better writers for our readers.
And the Four Horsemen of the Bibliopocalypse? I don’t think we have much to fear from them. After all, we’re the type that like horses, right? Perhaps we can warm to these snorting furies. Besides, this Internet beast, strange and wily creature that it is, offers the promise of a beginning more than the threat of an end. I say we saddle up and see where we can go. It might be nice to have a change of scenery.

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Posted in apocalypse, Authors, books, death of the book, Esquire, Life, Literature, National Endowment for the Arts, Stephen Marche, writing | Comments Off on Bibliopocalypse Bullshit

Election 2012

Congratulations to our President Barack Obama on his reelection as the 44th President of the United States. Just look at this guy. Was anyone actually seriously thinking about replacing this man with Mitt Romney? I’m not one to be worrying about fate or what’s meant to be, but I think last night’s events affirm that everything won’t completely suck. Not yet at least.

Untitled1

Think back to four years ago, the first time Barack was elected. Regardless of party, race, age, gender, sexual orientation, or anything that divides our nation apart- watching Obama’s ascent to the highest office in the land was nothing short of remarkable. The way he preached about a hopeful future amidst two wars and a financial crisis. How he looked at his wife and kids, genuinely humbled and happy to be our nation’s father figure. All the Sarah Palin’s, Michelle Bachmann’s, Karl Rove’s, and Rush Limbaugh’s in the world didn’t matter. Barry O reassured us it was going to be all good, and he was the one who we could trust to make it okay.

Obama was the one who had the background, the insight, the attitude to take America away from the white Christian conservatives. People who have been getting the right end of the deal for thousands of thousands of years and into the 21st century all while their numbers dwindled, their dogmas became more extreme, and embarrassment and shame no longer mediated their code of conduct. Barack made us realize that an American has no one skin color, religion, or political ideology. The United States was formed as place where all men are created equal and everyone has the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Barack Obama could bring this vision to fruition for our society because he had already done it himself. His heritage did not limit him just as our past will not limit us. Planes crashed into buildings on 9/11. Wars are being fought around the world. But we will emerge victorious and stronger than ever. That’s what we told ourselves in 2008, and no debt crisis, health care bill, or Mormon should have made us second guess our selves, our own hope. Last night proved Americans already know what’s in their history books. We have a vision for our society and Mitt Romney is just a footnote in this story. He is Byron Scott trying to guard Michael Jordan. He is just a name and a bug squashed along the way towards destiny. We were always supposed to be a place where we unite around being humans seeking opportunity, searching for the good life. A place where differences were not only tolerated but celebrated. A place with free, responsible discourse as educated men and women discuss and compromise to find actual solutions for real problems. A place where Barack Obama could happen.

Now don’t for a second think that I just love everything about elections and America and people and hope. I might as well just delete this blog right now if that’s how I felt. We still have a ways to go to escape all that is suck. But look at the progress we made in just one night:

A man with no interests, hobbies, or emotions does not have to represent all of us on a global scale. He will go homes to not drink, not smoke, not watch sports, not like movies or TV, not listen to music, and most importantly not be our President.

Marijuana was completely legalized in Colorado and Washington for recreational use. Weed will be regulated and sold like alcohol for all people above the age of 21, as well as taxed with at least $40 billion per year in Colorado going to constructing and maintaining school facilities. We can now get stoned, promote new business, and have cleaner schools. Freedom and democracy working at its finest. People can do what they want and society can improve. Let’s see a bill abolishing abortion do that.

Wisconsin elected an openly gay woman to be a United States Senator. Another step in the right direction towards a society that reflects our forefather’s hope for us. Tammy Baldwin is more American than any gay bashing, Jesus brainwashed, NASCAR watching, “’Murrica” idiot. She overcame unequal circumstances and doubts about something completely irrelevant to her ability to govern in order to hopefully provide future Americans of all types with a better shot for success.

Tea Party candidates struggled in Senate and House Elections. Overall, 3 Tea Party backed politicians lost and support for Michelle Bachmann declined even as she remained victorious. Maybe the last few years were just an episode of insanity. Maybe we turned the corner. Michelle Bachmann said God fucking talked to her and told her to run for President. Well what’s God saying now bitch? I think he’s saying people like you do more disservice for Gods everywhere than any type of people in the world. Taking advantage of simple people’s wishes to be good and go to heaven so you can create a Christian country in one that separates Church and State? A country where women have no choice but to raise a child conceived from rape or incest? A country with inferior black, Latino, gay, transsexual, and poor people? McAvoy- take it away.

We did it America. For the one night that we couldn’t afford to suck, we didn’t. I’m sure tomorrow we’re going to go back to molesting our children and shooting innocent people, but today we can rejoice. Today Barack Obama is moving forward as our President and we need to all put our trust behind him so we can get shit done. Period. We are all Americans- crazy assholes, white people, and smooth, chocolate-skinned, three point shooting Presidents alike.

God Bless America. And please do not fuck this up.

P.S

Wow. To think that this is post-loss Mitt Romney. You know if Obama would have lost we’d have pics of him chilling on the beach in Hawaii with a topless Michelle bringing him drinks. Never understood why people gave Obama such a hard time for not being American because his dad was Kenyan. He’s not American because he’s from Hawaii.

“Fuck this Mitt Romney shit. I’m leaving the country on the first flight to Honolulu. Aloha bitches!” -hypothetical runner up Barack Obama

romney6666


Posted in apocalypse, december 21 2012, gangnam style, justin bieber, mayan | Comments Off on Election 2012

The Last Remnants of Our Team

 Soon, three Yankee legends will ride off into the sunset. It’s looking increasingly likely that playoff baseball in the Bronx will follow suit. 

Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera all made their Major League debuts in 1995. Save for Pettitte’s three-year detour in Houston, all three have been with the New York Yankees ever since.

And for better or – as seems more likely – for worse, it will continue to be that way for at least one more year.

Last week, the Yankees re-signed Rivera to a one-year contract, ensuring he will remain in pinstripes for an amazing 19th season.

Over those nearly two decades, Rivera has progressed from starting pitcher to set-up man, and from closer to inarguably the greatest of of all-time.

He has also aged, considerably. Today, Mariano Rivera is 43 years old, and recovering from a torn ACL injury. An ACL tear is an uncommon enough injury for any pitcher, let alone one in his fifth decade of life.

For Rivera, the path to recovery runs through uncharted territory.

48 hours prior to re-upping one aging legend, the Yankees decided to bring back another key contributor to championships past. On November 30th, Andy Pettitte signed on for what is almost certainly one last hurrah.

After temporarily retiring for the 2011 season, Pettitte pitched well in an injury-and-age shortened 2012, tossing up a 2.87 ERA in just 12 starts.

Yet, over the last 36 months, Andy Pettitte has pitched in just 37 games. By the time Yankees were bounced from the postseason by the Detroit Tigers, his biological clock had struck forty.

A few thousand miles south, Derek Jeter continues his march back from an ankle injury suffered in a playoff game against those same Tigers.

By all accounts, the Captain will be ready for Opening Day.

If all of those accounts can be believed, the Yankees will have a 39 year-old leading off and playing shortstop next season.

For any Major League club – let alone for one with World Series aspirations – this would be unprecedented.

Yet, most of us would have it no other way. Jeter is OUR guy, the Yankee legend who, for members of my generation, seems as much of a role model as he does a childhood friend.

To me, and certainly to many much older than I, the Yankees are something foreign without number two manning the hole between second and third.

Without Andy Pettitte starting every fifth day, and without Mariano Rivera emerging from the bullpen to energize the ballpark and euthanize the other team, the New York Yankees are but an assemblage of ordinary faces with extra-ordinary contracts.

In the 19 years since our guys arrived on the scene – after just as long of a stint at the bottom of the standings – the Yankees have reemerged as the city and the league’s preeminent franchise. Together, Rivera, Jeter and Pettitte have won five World Series, countless individual accolades, and the eternal affection of every Yankee fan, many of whom were not interested or even alive when they made their Major League debuts.

Without our guys, this team is not ours. We’ve rooted along for too long to fathom anything else.

And now, as all three stand on the precipice of The End, and as all three have as much on their shoulders as at any other point in their Hall-of-Fame worthy careers, the Evil Empire might be in for a reality check.

Considering the injuries to Rivera and Jeter, and to 37-year old Alex Rodruguez – as well as the fact that, if the season started tomorrow, noted immortals Chris Dickerson and Frankie Cervelli would be playing rightfield and catcher, respectively – it’s hard to see how the Yankees make it through the 2013 season unscathed.

There are simply too many question marks, and not enough talent ready to step up and answer any sudden, belated assertions of father time.

But, let’s be optimistic and say the Yankees do survive 2013. Let’s say Jeter comes back and picks up where he left off a season ago. Let’s say Rivera is who he has always been, and that Rodriguez regains his stroke after a second hip surgery, and that Mark Teixeira finally shows us he’s actually a top-tier offensive first baseman. Let’s suppose Curtis Granderson remembers how to hit anything but homeruns, and that CC Sabathia and Andy Pettitte and Hiroki Kuroda all give the Yankees the pitching contributions they can’t do without.

Even then, the end will still be nigh. In 2014, Jeter will be 40, and – assuming he exercises his player option – in the last year of his contract, as well as almost certainly the last of his career. It’s hard to envision a scenario in which either Rivera or Pettitte stick around for one last final season, or in which Rodriguez and Teixeira don’t continue their regressions towards a frustrating mean.

Who can the Yankees rely on two years from now? Who can they even guarantee will still be on the roster?

Not Phil Hughes, who despite winning 16 games a season ago, is – at best – a number three in a competitive rotation.

Not Brett Gardner, who missed almost all of 2012 due to injury, and not the aforementioned Granderson, whose contract is up at the end of 2013.

Not even Robinson Cano, whose agreement also expires a year from now, and who will likely command the type of deal that the Yankees have already fallen victim to too many times. (See: Rodriguez, Alex; Giambi, Jason; Burnett, AJ, et al.)

Even in the most optimistic scenario, the Yankees are on the verge of starting over. And any reasonable evaluation of their farm system yields little hope of patching holes with internal resources.

Of course, the Yankees could end up doing what they do best – throwing money at whatever problems end up popping up.

In any event, it’s time to start getting concerned about the future.

Nostalgia is a dangerous thing. It causes us to look upon the past with a fondness not warranted, and it causes us to make decisions in the name of history and emotion, rather than reason, the present or the future.

That’s what the Yankees have been doing for far too long, leaning on legends they currently have without much regard for who’s coming next.

If only they had gazed further into their storied history, and remembered the Yankees teams of Mantle, Ford and Berra – all of whom stuck around into their late thirties, and all of whom left a talent-stripped roster in their wake once their baseball careers finally died merciful deaths.

In 1965, Yogi Berra, Whitey Ford and Mickey Mantle were all holding on to their careers for dear life. By ’67, only Ford and Mantle remained in the big leagues; and by the end of 1968, all three had rode off into their respective sunsets. The Yankees wouldn’t win a division title or make a World Series appearance at any point over the next seven seasons.

By the end of 2013, all three of our guys could be gone, and all at the same time. Soon, three cornerstones of a dynasty will disintegrate, and leave an alarmingly bare foundation behind. The Yankees and their fans have had 19 years to prepare for this moment. And somehow, we all seem to have been caught by surprise.

Jesse Golomb is the Editor-in-Chief of TheFanManifesto. Follow him on twitter, or drop him a line here.  

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Why My Blog Matters

Why My Blog Matters
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I Keep My Closet Complex Like the Magazine

I get the majority of the ideas for my blog from two places: Twitter and Complex.com.  I write about what my foIlowers tweet about, what celebrities tweet about and what’s trending on twitter.  In fact twitter is the reason I first started reading articles on Complex.com. One day one of my followers retweeted a tweet from Complex’s twitter feed.  I found the article very interesting, so I followed @ComplexMag.  That was probably my best idea, and worst mistake!  It was a great idea, because Complex.com has EVERYTHING: Style, Sneakers, Art & Design, City Guide, Rides, Music, Pop Culture, Sports, Girls, Video Games, News and more, but because Complex has everything I spend hours upon hours on this site every week. While developing my blog, I have read many blogs geared towards hip hop lovers, but I believe Complex does the best job at incorporating everything that has to do with hip hop culture, and doing it in a way that shows how hip hop is more than a negative genre of music that focuses on street life, violence, and degrading women.

I think the first time I become consciously aware of Complex magazine was while listening to Kid Cudi’s “Cleveland is the Reason” when Cudi says,

I keep my closet complex like the magazine

Until this year that lyric that I sung along with all 76 times I have listened to Cleveland id the Reason (according to iTunes) had no real significance to me. I’d never picked up the magazine or been to the website.  In fact, I had no idea that Complex is a young men’s style and lifestyle guide founded by fashion designer, Marc Ecko. 

Complex is an example of print media that has evolved on line.  Complex, the magazine is known to be “The Original Buyer’s Guide for Men.”  Although this magazine was initially geared towards men, everything section of the website (well maybe not the “girls” and “style” section, although it does provide interesting articles) can appeal o both genders. The online version of Complex Magazine, “Complex.com” features articles on everything from sports to hip hop to world news and many articles are presented in an easy to read and understand Top 5-100 format.

Some of my favorite Complex articles include:

“Barack Obama’s Most Hip Hop Moments”

“Donald Trumps 50 Stupidest Tweets”

“50 Hottest Alleged Mistresses of all Time”

“President Obama’s Got 99 Problems but Mitt’s Not One”

“25 Websites with the Best Comments Section” 

While the subject of every post isn’t explicitly hip hop, all posts target hip hop culture lovers. Complex magazine has approximately 300,000 monthly subscribers and Complex’s twitter feed has 201,075 followers, and the website gets over 50 million views per month. Complex’s use of twitter is also outstanding, making it a favorite by rappers who are constantly retweeting @ComplexMag.

            To me, Complex.com does the best job of combining hip hop culture and world news on the Internet.  Not only is it great at that, but it is also a great example of a magazine turned digital.  I think Complex.com also is great at addressing all audiences.  Although it’s original purpose was to be a lifestyle guide for men, myself and other female friends of mine, love reading the content on the website and don’t feel out of place, or degraded. Complex was founded by a white man, Marc Ecko, a hip hop fanatic, who loves graffiti. While most hip hop listeners are African American this website targets more than that demographic.  People of all races and genders can enjoy Complex.com while appreciating hip hop, and this is what makes it great to me.

Sources:

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/10/magazine/10ECKO.html?_r=0

http://www.marcecko.com/#/

Comments Off on I Keep My Closet Complex Like the Magazine

I Keep My Closet Complex Like the Magazine

I get the majority of the ideas for my blog from two places: Twitter and Complex.com.  I write about what my foIlowers tweet about, what celebrities tweet about and what’s trending on twitter.  In fact twitter is the reason I first started reading articles on Complex.com. One day one of my followers retweeted a tweet from Complex’s twitter feed.  I found the article very interesting, so I followed @ComplexMag.  That was probably my best idea, and worst mistake!  It was a great idea, because Complex.com has EVERYTHING: Style, Sneakers, Art & Design, City Guide, Rides, Music, Pop Culture, Sports, Girls, Video Games, News and more, but because Complex has everything I spend hours upon hours on this site every week. While developing my blog, I have read many blogs geared towards hip hop lovers, but I believe Complex does the best job at incorporating everything that has to do with hip hop culture, and doing it in a way that shows how hip hop is more than a negative genre of music that focuses on street life, violence, and degrading women.

I think the first time I become consciously aware of Complex magazine was while listening to Kid Cudi’s “Cleveland is the Reason” when Cudi says,

I keep my closet complex like the magazine

Until this year that lyric that I sung along with all 76 times I have listened to Cleveland id the Reason (according to iTunes) had no real significance to me. I’d never picked up the magazine or been to the website.  In fact, I had no idea that Complex is a young men’s style and lifestyle guide founded by fashion designer, Marc Ecko. 

Complex is an example of print media that has evolved on line.  Complex, the magazine is known to be “The Original Buyer’s Guide for Men.”  Although this magazine was initially geared towards men, everything section of the website (well maybe not the “girls” and “style” section, although it does provide interesting articles) can appeal o both genders. The online version of Complex Magazine, “Complex.com” features articles on everything from sports to hip hop to world news and many articles are presented in an easy to read and understand Top 5-100 format.

Some of my favorite Complex articles include:

“Barack Obama’s Most Hip Hop Moments”

“Donald Trumps 50 Stupidest Tweets”

“50 Hottest Alleged Mistresses of all Time”

“President Obama’s Got 99 Problems but Mitt’s Not One”

“25 Websites with the Best Comments Section” 

While the subject of every post isn’t explicitly hip hop, all posts target hip hop culture lovers. Complex magazine has approximately 300,000 monthly subscribers and Complex’s twitter feed has 201,075 followers, and the website gets over 50 million views per month. Complex’s use of twitter is also outstanding, making it a favorite by rappers who are constantly retweeting @ComplexMag.

            To me, Complex.com does the best job of combining hip hop culture and world news on the Internet.  Not only is it great at that, but it is also a great example of a magazine turned digital.  I think Complex.com also is great at addressing all audiences.  Although it’s original purpose was to be a lifestyle guide for men, myself and other female friends of mine, love reading the content on the website and don’t feel out of place, or degraded. Complex was founded by a white man, Marc Ecko, a hip hop fanatic, who loves graffiti. While most hip hop listeners are African American this website targets more than that demographic.  People of all races and genders can enjoy Complex.com while appreciating hip hop, and this is what makes it great to me.

Sources:

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/10/magazine/10ECKO.html?_r=0

http://www.marcecko.com/#/

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Dropping off the cliff

In two days it will be the first of December. It marks the first of a month filled with holiday music, gift giving, jingle bells, hot cocoa, snow – the list goes on. But this year puts a whole new face on the excitement of the holiday season. It also marks the beginning of the last month before we, or rather, our economy, could plunge disastrously off of a cliff. A cliff affectionately named the fiscal cliff.

 

Falling tragically into the abyss which lies beyond this fiscal cliff is inevitable, unless, by some act of brilliance, our elected officials can overcome their many differences and find a way to compromise. Talk about a holiday miracle.

 

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, let’s start off by saying that it has to do with that word we have all come to fear and despise: recession. You see, currently our congressmen and women are working furiously (we hope) to save us from this fiscal cliff that we our heading towards. And yes, it is as treacherous as it sounds. Metaphorically, if you were standing a few feet away from the edge of a precipice, and someone was pointing a gun at your head, telling you to keep walking forward, and the ONLY way for it to stop was for this anonymous person to mercifully put the gun down and let you venture back into safe territory, THIS would be something close to the situation our country is in currently. In this scenario, you would be the state of our economy, the free fall off the cliff a devastating recession unlike even what we’ve already seen, and the gunman would be, surprisingly, our very own lawmakers.

 

So how did we get into this perilous dilemma you might ask? That’s a good question. Well, it all started in 2001 when President Bush and the Republicans in Senate pushed through a bill with only a simple Senate majority using a legislative tool called reconciliation. (Reconciliation in the Senate means that debate of a budget bill is limited to only 20 hours.) The bill involved a 10-year $1.7 trillion tax cut. This bill was supplemented with another round of tax cuts 2 years later, again passed with reconciliation, and also to expire in 2011. After the 2010 midterm elections, President Obama struck a deal with Republicans in congress to extend the tax cuts another two years in exchange for additional tax measures including a tax cut on payroll. The problem then arises from of a deal made in August in response to the debt-ceiling debates. Because no bipartisan agreement was made for deficit reduction last year, the deal requires an automatic $109 billion to be cut from various government programs. Woof.

 

To un-complicate things, the debate around the fiscal cliff essentially comes down to the appropriate way of reducing the nation’s debt. In the simplest of terms, while Republicans favor widespread cuts to government programs, Democrats prefer higher tax rates.

 

So what are we doing about it? President Obama has set a deadline for the deal by Christmas, so that “American families, American businesses have some certainty going into next year. And if we get this wrong, the economy is going to go south.” Looks like our commander in chief has quite a wish list this year.


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David Roberts (Grist.org) Skypes Vanderbilt

Let’s be clear about this. Scientists consider 3.6 degrees catastrophic. There are serious scientists who doubt that human civilization can endure at all in the face of 7.2 degrees. And we are headed for 10.8.

We simply haven’t come to terms with what empirical science is telling us. We all sound like pundits, going with our “guts.” The science feels too scary, too abrasive, too implausible. The hippies out there protesting over climate change feel “unserious.” The notion that energy prices might have to rise or lifestyles change feels “alarmist.” We talk about climate, if we talk about it at all, in terms of folk wisdom and time-worn prejudices… It’s our own version of “math you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better.” Call it math you do as an American to make yourself feel better.

— Climate Science is Nate Silver and US Politics is Karl Rove by David Roberts, The Grist

Today our class spoke with energy and climate superblogger Dave Roberts from The Grist. In the article I quoted above, Roberts paints a really effective analogy comparing election night to  climate doomsday. We’re not joking around anymore and we really can’t afford to. Things are getting serious. Like the pro-Romney pundits watching with optimism as  electoral votes grew more lopsided, so far we just haven’t been able to mentally or emotionally comprehend how bad it will be. Read it!

I asked D. Roberts what the next step in US politics would be to start fighting climate change, and what we should demand from our govt over the next 4 years. The answer? “Expect no federal legislation–not while Republicans control the House.” However, there’s a few key places where President Obama can wield his executive power to make a real difference. First is his veto power in the Keystone pipeline proposed to connect Canadian oilsands in Alberta to Texas, and leasing in the Powder River Basin. Last and most importantly, Pres Obama enforced regulations last year that only addressed new power plants, but there are potential upcoming EPA regulations on existing power plants as well. This is an area that Pres Obama can be as strong or as weak as he wants. If govt chooses strength against climate change, he could acheive the carbon reductions promised in Copenhagen.

So what can we do? “The biggest thing is to speak up in support of the EPA. The Environmental Protection Agency gets constant, unyielding opposition from the right wing and not a lot of support from the left. After all, we don’t celebrate every day the fact that we don’t have asthma (but we should). Also we can look to state and local level for change, not federal; normal people can support renewable energy mandates at the state level (while the right wing goes after clean energy legislation “with both barrels”) and speak up for action from the state house, the city (mayors).”

What will you do after we solve climate change? “I’ve literally never once worried about that. The one good thing about the problem I’ve chosen to focus on is lifetime employment.” But if we happen to solve climate change in Roberts’ lifetime, the interaction between humans and energy is endlessly fascinating.

Thanks for your time and insight. Love the blog! I don’t think the posts are long-winded at all.


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Gangnam Style. Still a thing.

New York Times “Gangnam Style,” the surprise hit by the South Korean rapper Psy, has now been viewed on YouTube more than 805 million times, making it the channel’s most-watched video of all time, according to a post on YouTube’s Trends blog.

After first appearing on YouTube in July, “Gangnam Style” has now overtaken the previous leader, Justin Bieber’s “Baby,” which was originally uploaded in February 2010.

“Psy’s official channel now has over 1 billion views, a considerable number,” the Trends post said. “Views on Bieber’s Vevo channel alone, however, still total over 3 billion.”

My New York Times colleague Melena Ryzik interviewed Psy last month, and she wrote that “after posting compliments on Twitter about the song, Justin Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, signed Psy, and an English-language track may be their first collaboration.”

People have been watching Gangnam style for a combined 6,630 years worth of time- a four minute and thirteen second video over 800 million times. If this number doesn’t mean anything to you the wheel was invented 6,000 years ago and agriculture was still a thousand years away. If “Psy” would have just opened a dry cleaner or ruined the curve like any other South Korean who knows what kind of progress we could have made in the last few months.

Nope none of that matters. It’s good we’re wasting our lives away- UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon called the song a “force for world peace.” I guess nothing unites mankind like realizing that we are all dumb enough to listen to a song we don’t understand over and over and over again. Hear that terrorists? We’re not so different. We’ve all stopped caring. Everyone has so little self-respect/ is drunk enough to ride an imaginary horse in what I can only assume is not the technically correct nor a safe manner.

But of course the story can’t end there. Bieber just couldn’t keep his hands out his fans’ pockets and training bras. I’m just spitballing here but maybe this Mayan 2012 Apocalypse thing is beginning to unfold.

Ready?

Psy and Bieber drop their English collabo Gangnam style December 1 in time for musical Christmas cards, iPad mini commercials, and Hanukah parodies so the Jews don’t feel left out. Shit explodes. 4 billion views the first week. Teenage girls go nuts, bewitched by that damn rock music they all get knocked up grinding at their Middle School Snowball Dances. Abortions everywhere. Our political system goes into gridlock with Republicans threatening more hurricanes and everyone’s sons turning gay until abortions are outlawed. Discos and nightclubs around the world cave in. People get murdered if they do the dance wrong. Grandparents trying to show their grandchildren what they learned on “The Facebook” break bones and flood hospitals. Obamacare gives every single one of them $14 trillion each sending our economy into the tank. But ultimately, on December 21st of course, someone smuggles a laptop into North Korea where the Internet is illegal. Having never seen Justin Bieber before and realizing just how fucking stupid the world’s population is, Kim Jong-Un is outraged. He’s had enough. Nukes the crap out of everything. Rewards Psy for his dutiful service in Death to America. Oh wait Psy’s South Korean? He wouldn’t help the North Koreans? Yeah maybe, but don’t forget- they’re both Chinese.

PS- I’d like to formally apologize to all my Asian readers. I’m rearry, rearry sorry.

EDIT: This picture made the front page of Reddit the day after I wrote the post. I was close.

Too close…


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Have we been shitting wrong?

These squatty potty people have some nerve telling everyone they can’t even doodie the right way. I can only imagine if I walked into a bathroom with one of these stools without having seen the video first. I’d think either a midget lived there or some bulimic girl’s knees were really starting to get sore.

So many little gems in this product description. I took an embarrassingly lengthy amount of time to denote them for you with surprisingly entertaining Microsoft Word AutoShapes.

-refined

Alright, lets take it easy for a second. This is NOT a more refined way to use the toilet. They literally want us to shit like apes, they say so themselves in the video. I’m sure if you walked in on someone using the stool it would be next to impossible to not to make direct eye contact with their anus. If you’re barging into occupied bathrooms  you have enough issues without that. Plus, the only times when someone’s knees are next to their ears is when they are pinching one off into a brown paper bag or lighting a fart on fire. Yeah just what I was thinking- refined.

-if you are new to squatting

Baseball catchers and Holley Mangold, you guys are ready for expert mode. Us beginners still need our training wheels. And I think the accepted term these days is Squatting Impaired. Insulting. Are 7 inchers second-class citizens or something? Last time I checked this was America.

-$79.95

If you ever, ever find out someone you know bought one of these Tao Chicken Lo Mein Bamboo stools you need to immediately unfriend them on Facebook in real life. Just stop associating with them period end of story. They can use a phone book. They can pick someone up at Home Depot. They can even put their feet on the actual toilet seat- for free. If they are dumb enough to buy this who knows what they are capable of. I’d rather have constant diarrhea then spend 80 bucks on this thing. It’s only a matter of time before its is covered in poop particles, brownish green/greenish brown, and headed for the trash anyway. That’s why I ALWAYS close the lid before flushing. Don’t want deuces being sprayed onto your toothbrush or the bottle of stuff you masturbate with. Flushing habits should be like the third thing talked about on a first date. Serious deal breaker.

I digress…

Final word goes to this guy’s YouTube comment.

Can’t really say it better myself. Who am I to try to argue with 508 Internet points?


Posted in bathroom, crap, doodie, kaka, poop, poopie, potty, shit, stool, toilet | Comments Off on Have we been shitting wrong?