Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Men and porn

This is an interesting and amusing article:
Researchers were conducting a study comparing the views of men in their 20s who had never been exposed to pornography with regular users.

But their project stumbled at the first hurdle when they failed to find a single man who had not been seen it.

"We started our research seeking men in their 20s who had never consumed pornography,” said Professor Simon Louis Lajeunesse. “We couldn't find any."
That's not a surprise, really: men are men and, as Jeff Foxworthy says, men's motivations tend to boil down to "I'd like a beer and I'd like to see something nekkid!" But what was rather interesting was that porn wasn't the corrupter of sexual preferences that it's popularly made out to be:
The study found that men watched pornography that matched their own image of sexuality, and quickly discarded material they found offensive or distasteful.

Prof Lajeunesse said pornography did not have a negative effect on men's sexuality.

“Not one subject had a pathological sexuality,” he said. “In fact, all of their sexual practices were quite conventional.

“Pornography hasn't changed their perception of women or their relationship, which they all want to be as harmonious and fulfilling as possible,” he added.
So, men like looking at dirty pictures (quelle surprise!) and it doesn't change their basic sexual makeup.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Quote du jour

Another Patton Oswalt quote:
We all bleed the same color. Then again, you'd have to stab everyone to verify that.


Stinker the porcupine

It looks like it's the week for cute animal videos: here's a porcupine who thinks he's a dog, albeit a leetle pricklier.


Monday, July 19, 2010

St. Luke's Bottle Band

Oh, those silly Midwest Lutherans! St. Luke's, in Prospect Park, IL, does a lot of things but the most famous may be the St. Luke's Bottle Band. They play bottles of all kinds by blowing on 'em, striking 'em with drumsticks, and so on. It's fun stuff.

There are several RealAudio clips on their website, such as the Second Brandenburg Concerto, the Dance of the Reed Flutes, and a version of one of my top 5 all-time favorite pieces of music, dubbed Rhapsody in Bottles. There are also a lot of concert clips on YouTube: an entire concert, in fact.

Something you'll notice in the concert clips is that the conductor will cue everyone by making a sudden gesture raising his arms. The band members will frequently respond. Keep an eye out for it.

Too much acid

This is someone who seems to be mixing waaaaay too much acid with their editing. It's certainly got that intense acidy feeling to it. Very strange.


How well do you see colors?

I always thought I had a pretty good sense of color. Turns out I do. This test will help you identify your color sensitivity and where you have trouble with particular hues.

I scored 4 on this test. (0 is perfect.) 

Quote du jour

"Skinny jeans were invented by Hades, or one of his minions, to punish Persephone for leaving him." --Sandra Knoy

Franz Biebl's "Ave Maria"

BTW, this has nothing to do with anything, but this is a clip of a good production of a piece I'm very fond of. I get goose pimples whenever I hear it and the finale makes me teary for its elegance. I sing bass and the bass line is really yummy on this, particularly in the finale.

I first met this when I had the honor to be singing with the Washingtonians, an 80-90 voice mixed choir run by the many-talented Scott Warrender. It's one of my regrets that I didn't discover them years before I did, because I would've loved performing with them for years and years. Funny, great music, wonderful shows, a joy to be with. ~sigh~

This YouTube clip is the best I've found so far. The video portion just shows a flickering fireplace, so you can crank up the sound and just listen. Headphones are desirable. You're going to want to crank this up.

I so love this piece.


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Maybe my words are sacred, after all!

My dear friend Bonni had a problem a few days ago: her house burned down. The whole thing didn't actually burn to ground, but I won't be surprised if it's going to need to be rebuilt completely because of smoke and water damage. This is really common for houses with even 40%-50% fire damage: the smoke just pours through the rest of the house and there's no good way to get it out of the walls and ceilings. It's tough stuff and we are all looking for ways in which we can help her.

But the funny thing about this that she told me today was that she was in the master bedroom looking for whatever might be salvaged and there were only two books that weren't damaged by fire, smoke, or water: the two copies of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Disaster Preparedness" I'd sent her. In other words, the book I'd co-authored with Dr. Maurice Ramirez on how to survive disaster seems to be reasonably fireproof. 

I guess my personal mana extends a thousand miles away even to my books. Hey, am I fuckin' cool or what?