Monday, June 28, 2010

To me, Eliot Ness defines class.

I've had two thoughts about matters of taste. First: people who complain that the great mass of people have none should be grateful, since if the hoi polloi shared their preferences they would be required to despise what they currently love. Like a music fan who buys every record a band makes until they finally cut a hit. Then they hate 'em. There's no middle ground between obscurity and selling out. And second, definitions of taste. Good taste is when you have internalized the standards of your class. Exquisite taste is when you understand the unspoken standards of your betters.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Miller Barber: High Life and Vitalis

Here's the sort of cutting edge journalism you don't get from Cal Thomas or that mean girl with the red hair: Suggested drinking games for the long hot summer ahead. Not alcohol drinking games; the only real fun one is called "try to maneuver the concave end of the vessel somewhere near your slack and drooling piehole." No, this is variations on the Arnold Palmer, half iced tea and half lemonade. You get to make up other vintage golfer related beverages. Lee Trevino: horchata and coke. Tom Weiskopf: beer with a nice head on it. Johnny Revolta? Not going there.

Monday, June 14, 2010

I reach for my revolver

Roger Ebert says video games aren't Art. Which annoys some fanboys, but leaves a lot of us wondering why he bothered to opine on the topic, being as qualified to talk about anything but movies as Richard Dawkins is to give spiritual advice. Stick with what you know, I say. Plus, "what is Art?" is sort of a turn of the last century question anyway, isn't it? Capital A "Art" came in with The Sorrows of Young Werther and hasn't meant anything since 1914. "Art" is propaganda in the hands of dilettantes - it's a commercial nobody's paid for yet.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Oddly, it's poison to pigs.

Palmer Amaranth may sound like a J.D. Salinger protagonist, but it's actually a nuisance weed spreading across the American south. Also called "pigweed," it's immune to most pesticides. It's incredibly competitive, thriving even in extreme heat and drought conditions. And it's moving north. But here's the thing; this 6 1/2 foot tall plant has a one kilogram edible seed head with more and better protein than whole wheat, while the leaves and stalks are more nutritious than spinach. If I was a farmer, I'd be doing everything I could to keep cotton and soy out of my amaranth fields.