November 19, 2009

Bacon Sushi:

How do put two delicious things rolled into one?
BACON SUSHI, my friends.

bacon sushi

"So, I got this “build your own sushi” package last week and decided to combine the best of both worlds. I give the you… Bacon Sushi..."

Please click here to read Jason Bartholme's blog on

Bacon Christmas

November 12, 2009

Bacon-Flavored Envelopes:


Ever wonder why the adhesive strip on envelopes couldn’t be just a tad more tasty (or at least not as gross)? The good people at J&D’s have finally figured out a way to help our taste buds and make closing envelopes an enjoyable—instead of an avoidable—task with their bacon-flavored envelopes, called Mmmvelopes.

These delicious bacon-flavored envelopes cost $6.99 for a pack of 25 or $14.99 for 3 packs of 25. Mmmvelopes are not made of real bacon, so they’re appropriate for non-pork and non-meat eaters.

These tasty bacon-flavored envelopes will make unique carriers for Christmas and birthday cards or anything else you have to mail because, really, who doesn’t love bacon?

November 01, 2009

Torture Methods:

In Medieval times, they sought out ways to cut back on crime. Instead of letting the criminals sit in a jail cell, like today, they would use different torture devices. These devices came in all shapes and sizes and were meant to scare other would be criminals into not doing the crimes committed by the person being tortured.

The Brazen Bull

This device was designed in Greece by Perillos of Athens. He was a brass founder and he cast the shape of a hollow bull with a door on the side. This condemned person was shut in the bull. There was a fire lit underneath the device and because it was brass it became yellow hot, which would cause the person to roast to death. It was configured with tubes and stops, so when the person was screaming it would sound like the bull was raging.

source: http:../../

The Breaking Wheel

This wheel of torture was used to kill criminals and it did that very slowly. This device was a large wagon wheel. The criminal would be tied to the wheel, where the punisher would proceed to use a hammer to break the bones of the other person. Once that was completed, they were left there to die and even the birds would peck at their flesh until death was complete.

source: http:../../

The Rack

This device is an oblong rectangle with a wooden frame. It was raised from the ground with a roller either at one end or at both ends. One end had a fixed bar, where the feet were locked onto it, and the other end had a moveable bar, where the hands were tied to it. It had a lever that was used as the interrogation progressed. It was on a lever and pulley system that would eventually cause the joints of the person being tortured to dislocate and then separate. Eventually, the muscle fibers, ligaments, and cartilage would break separating the limbs from the body of the condemned.

source: http:../../

Judas Cradle

This torture device is a pyramid shaped seat. The victim is placed on top of it, with the point inserted into an orifice, then they are very slowly lowered onto it. The condemned was usually naked in order to add to their humiliation. This device was thought to stretch the orifice or to slowly impale the person. The stretching of the orifice would cause pain, rips and tears, which would eventually cause death.

source: http:../../

Coffin Torture

This device was used in the Middle Ages. The condemned would be placed in the metal coffin and left there for the appropriate amount of time. Depending on the crime, the person could be left in there to die, while animals ate their flesh or they would be placed on public display, which would cause their death. The people that would surround the person in the coffin would throw rocks and poke the person with objects until they finally became deceased.

source: http:../../

Iron Maiden

This iron cabinet with a hinged front was made to be a tall upright cabinet that would enclose a human being. It would have a small opening, which was closeable, so the interrogator would be able to open and close it at their will. They would then poke the bodies of the person with a sharp object. They would use knives, spikes, or nails and the person inside was forced to remain standing in one position, ultimately causing their demise.

source: http:../../

The Knee Splitter

The whole purpose of this device was to make a person’s knees useless. It was used in mainly during the Inquisitional period of time. This device was faceted with spikes, from three to twenty of them, and depending on the crime committed, depended on the number used. IT had a handle the torturer would use to close the device. The spikes would mutilate the skin and begin to crush the knee. They would also use the device on elbows, arms and the lower legs. There were even instances that they would heat the device to cause a maximum amount of pain. Death wasn’t a result of this device, but it the person refused to cooperate they would use other means.

source: http:../../

Heretic’s Fork

This device was used during the Spanish Inquisition. It has two forks at opposing ends of a metal rod. One of the forks would be placed under the chin, piercing the skin, and the other end would be piercing the flesh in the upper chest. It didn’t puncture any vital organs, so death would not take place during the use of this method, but it made talking and neck movements impossible. While wearing this device a person’s hands would be tied behind their backs, so they could not escape it. It would harm the person’s neck and, often times, spread diseases.

source: http:../../

Saw Torture

This method was used to torture and kill the condemned person, which were typically accused of witchery, adultery, murder, blasphemy, or theft. The accused was hung upside down. This slowed down the blood loss by forcing the blood to the brain and it humiliated the person. This type of torture could last for several hours. Some of the victims would be cut completely in half, while some would only be cut up to their abdomen in order to prolong their deaths.

source: http:../../


This was used to get a confession from the offenders. The fingers of the person were placed in the device and crushed by the torturer turning the handle on the top. It could last for a very long time and it was very painful. This was also used to crush a person’s toes. They even made bigger versions of this device used to crush feet, knees, elbows and even heads.

source: http:../../

October 21, 2009

One Nation Under Cthulhu:

One Nation Under Cthulhu

One Nation Under Cthulhu is a parody follow-up image to Jon McNaughton's One Nation Under God.

(From Reader Darc_Oso)

'Married With Children' Cast: Then and Now

By Amy & Nancy Harrington, | Wednesday, October 14, 2009, 3:22 PM

The cast of "Married... with Children"
Sony Pictures

On April 5, 1987, the FOX network debuted its first primetime series, an irreverent sitcom about a highly dysfunctional family called "Married... with Children" (followed by "The Tracey Ullman Show"). The series ran for 11 seasons and was a turning point in the careers of actors Ed O'Neill, Katey Sagal, and Christina Applegate. Plus, it would forever change the way we heard the Frank Sinatra-crooned theme song, "Love and Marriage."


This week, the final season of the series was released on DVD. In the words of Al Bundy, "Let's rock," while we take a walk down memory lane with the stars of "Married... with Children," then and now.



[Photo gallery: See the stars of "Married... with Children" through the years.]




Ed O'Neill: Then

Before success with "Married... with Children," Ed O'Neill had spent his career doing a string of small film parts and TV appearances. While he was considered for such roles as Sam Malone on "Cheers" and Steven Keaton on "Family Ties," he ended up landing a part in the failed TV pilot "Popeye Doyle" and a cop role in the film "The Adventures of Ford Fairlane." Then he was cast as Al Bundy, and he hit it big at age 41.



Ed O'Neill: Now

Ed can currently be seen on the funniest new show of the season, "Modern Family," playing a not-so-warm-and-fuzzy husband, father, and granddad with a passion for toy airplanes... oops, we mean model airplanes. We're hoping this move wipes away the series of career missteps between "MWC" and "MF" that included "Big Apple," "Dragnet," and "John from Cincinnati."




Katey Sagal: Then

Catherine Louise Sagal's younger sisters were famous before she was: they are best known as the Doublemint Twins and stars of the short-lived (and very wholesome) 1980s sitcom "Double Trouble." In the meantime, Katey Sagal built her career slowly, with regular TV guest appearances and stints as a backup singer for an eclectic slate of artists that included Bob Dylan, Bette Midler, and Gene Simmons. In 1985 she landed what must've seemed like her big break, starring alongside Mary Tyler Moore in the TV legend's new sitcom, "Mary." But even TV legends can have major misses, and "Mary" was canceled after just one season. That turned out to be good news for Sagal, as her next TV gig was that of anti-housewife Peg Bundy.



Katey Sagal: Now

Katey has continued to act, most recently in a recurring role as domineering attorney Marci Klein on "Eli Stone" and as the motorcycle club mama on "Sons of Anarchy." From time to time she's returned to her music roots as well, with two solo CDs and a recent series of cabaret shows at a small club in Hollywood.





Christina Applegate: Then

Three months was a good age for Christina Applegate. As an infant, she not only made her first commercial (for Playtex baby bottles) but also landed her first TV gig, on the soap opera "Days of Our Lives" (with her mother, Nancy Priddy). Her movie career kicked off before she was even a tween, with the 1981 horror flick "Jaws of Satan." From there, she worked the TV circuit, playing a young Grace Kelly in a TV biopic and appearing on "Charles in Charge," among other shows. But she didn't make it big until the ripe old age of 15, when she was cast as the ditzy and promiscuous Kelley Bundy on "Married... with Children."



Christina Applegate: Now

No one spun "Married... with Children" into a successful career better than Christina Applegate. She's had two acclaimed (albeit short-lived) series, "Jesse" and "Samantha Who?," and she's appeared in such films as "The Sweetest Thing" and "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy." She even conquered the Broadway stage in 2005 as the Tony-nominated lead in a revival of "Sweet Charity" (despite a broken right foot that delayed her debut).


But in 2008 Applegate really saw how much her fans loved her with the outpouring of support that she received after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Now cancer-free and without a regular series, Christina is focusing her attention on her film career. She's got three movies due out in the next year: "Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel," "Going the Distance," and the aptly named Everything Is Going to Be Just Fine," in which she is reportedly playing another TV legend, "Bewitched" star Elizabeth Montgomery.




David Faustino: Then

David Faustino was just 13 years old when he landed the choice role of Bud Bundy on "Married... with Children." But it was far from his first gig. That one he nailed at age three months, playing Lily Tomlin's baby girl on a TV special. From there, he took on guest-starring parts on "Little House on the Prairie," "Trapper John, M.D.," and "Fantasy Island." But TV audiences would forever identify Faustino with Bud, the role they watched him grow up playing, even after the series ended in 1997.



David Faustino: Now

Faustino has had the typical rocky road of many former child stars: a series of unimpressive follow-up parts, an inability to break away from the image of his most famous character, and a misdemeanor marijuana possession arrest in 2007. So he decided to take matters into his own hands, forming his own production company, FNB Entertainment, with "Parker Lewis Can't Lose" star Corin Nemec. Among their first projects was an Internet series called "Star-ving." In the Webisodes, Faustino starred as a caricatured version of himself - a down-and-out former child star who can't get a gig and who makes a meager living running a porn shop bequeathed to him by an obsessed fan. But life is not imitating art; Faustino and Nemec have three films in various stages of production.




Amanda Bearse: Then

Amanda Bearse already had a successful run on "All My Children," and had starred in such kitschy classic films as "Fright Night." But she became a household name when she took the role of Marcy Rhoades (ultimately Marcy D'Arcy) on "Married... with Children." Yet few give credit to the gay actress for coming out on TV 20 days before another GLAAD champion did. Ellen DeGeneres made TV history when her character announced she was a lesbian on the famous "Puppy Episode" of "Ellen" on April 30, 1997. But on April 10 of that year, Amanda took on the dual roles of her regular character, Marcy, and Marcy's lesbian cousin, Mandy, on the episode "Lez Be Friends."



Amanda Bearse: Now

Besides a handful of acting roles, Amanda has stayed behind the camera since "Married... with Children" ended. She honed her craft while helming more than 30 episodes of "MWC" and has since directed a variety of series, including "Dharma and Greg," "MADtv," "The Big Gay Sketch Show," and her former co-star Christina Applegate's sitcom "Jesse."




David Garrison: Then

David Garrison had done some TV acting prior to taking the part of Marcy's husband Steve Rhodes on "Married... with Children," most notably as Jason Bateman's con artist foil in the sitcom "It's Your Move." But Garrison was far more established in live theater. He'd appeared on and off Broadway in "A History of the American Film," "Torch Song Trilogy," and "A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine," for which he received a Tony nomination. And, although he enjoyed working on the irreverent sitcom, he missed the theater and asked to be let out of his contract in 1990 to return to the stage.



David Garrison: Now

Garrison did go back to the theater after "Married... with Children," but he continued to act on TV as well. While he never stuck with another series for long, he made appearances on the shows "Nikki" (co-starring with his former TV wife, Amanda Bearse), "The Practice," and "The West Wing." He's also continued to pursue his passion for musical theater in productions of "Titanic," "Bells Are Ringing," and "Wicked."




Ted McGinley: Then

When her first husband, Steve Rhodes, left her to become a ranger at Yosemite National Park, Marcy quickly scooped up a younger, better looking but incredibly lazy husband named Jefferson D'Arcy. The actor who played him was no stranger to joining an already established show. Ted McGinley has actually been referred to as the "Patron Saint of Shark Jumping," having joined the casts of several hit shows at their critical turning points, including "The Love Boat," "Happy Days," and "Dynasty." But while he lasted only two years on "The Love Boat" and "Dynasty," and four on "Happy Days," McGinley brought incredibly good luck to "Married... with Children." The series ran another seven seasons with Ted in the cast.



Ted McGinley: Now

Not long after "Married... with Children" wrapped, Ted briefly appeared on the series "SportsNight" and then joined the guest star circuit on a slew of shows, including "The West Wing" and "The Practice." But in 2003, he found a new sitcom family when he was cast as Faith Ford's husband on "Hope and Faith." The show ran for three seasons, then Ted was back on the street looking for work. His feet took him all the way to the "Dancing with the Stars" stage, where he was eliminated second. But, as always, his unemployment was short lived. Look for him later this year in the feature film "Privileged."


October 01, 2009

Ardi, New Earliest Hominid Found:

By RANDOLPH E. SCHMID, AP Science Writer

Dr. C. Owen Lovejoy, Kent State University professor of anthropology, stands
AP – Dr. C. Owen Lovejoy, Kent State University professor of anthropology, stands next to the reconstructed …

WASHINGTON – The story of humankind is reaching back another million years as scientists learn more about "Ardi," a hominid who lived 4.4 million years ago in what is now Ethiopia. The 110-pound, 4-foot female roamed forests a million years before the famous Lucy, long studied as the earliest skeleton of a human ancestor.
This older skeleton reverses the common wisdom of human evolution, said anthropologist C. Owen Lovejoy of Kent State University.
Rather than humans evolving from an ancient chimp-like creature, the new find provides evidence that chimps and humans evolved from some long-ago common ancestor — but each evolved and changed separately along the way.
"This is not that common ancestor, but it's the closest we have ever been able to come," said Tim White, director of the Human Evolution Research Center at the University of California, Berkeley.
The lines that evolved into modern humans and living apes probably shared an ancestor 6 million to 7 million years ago, White said in a telephone interview.
But Ardi has many traits that do not appear in modern-day African apes, leading to the conclusion that the apes evolved extensively since we shared that last common ancestor.

A study of Ardi, under way since the first bones were discovered in 1994, indicates the species lived in the woodlands and could climb on all fours along tree branches, but the development of their arms and legs indicates they didn't spend much time in the trees. And they could walk upright, on two legs, when on the ground.
Formally dubbed Ardipithecus ramidus — which means root of the ground ape — the find is detailed in 11 research papers published Thursday by the journal Science.
"This is one of the most important discoveries for the study of human evolution," said David Pilbeam, curator of Paleoanthropology at Harvard's Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology.
"It is relatively complete in that it preserves head, hands, feet and some critical parts in between. It represents a genus plausibly ancestral to Australopithecus — itself ancestral to our genus Homo," said Pilbeam, who was not part of the research teams.
Scientists assembled the skeleton from 125 pieces.
Lucy, also found in Africa, thrived a million years after Ardi and was of the more human-like genus Australopithecus.
"In Ardipithecus we have an unspecialized form that hasn't evolved very far in the direction of Australopithecus. So when you go from head to toe, you're seeing a mosaic creature that is neither chimpanzee, nor is it human. It is Ardipithecus," said White.
White noted that Charles Darwin, whose research in the 19th century paved the way for the science of evolution, was cautious about the last common ancestor between humans and apes.
"Darwin said we have to be really careful. The only way we're really going to know what this last common ancestor looked like is to go and find it. Well, at 4.4 million years ago we found something pretty close to it," White said. "And, just like Darwin appreciated, evolution of the ape lineages and the human lineage has been going on independently since the time those lines split, since that last common ancestor we shared."

Some details about Ardi in the collection of papers:

• Ardi was found in Ethiopia's Afar Rift, where many fossils of ancient plants and animals have been discovered. Findings near the skeleton indicate that at the time it was a wooded environment. Fossils of 29 species of birds and 20 species of small mammals were found at the site.

• Geologist Giday WoldeGabriel of Los Alamos National Laboratory was able to use volcanic layers above and below the fossil to date it to 4.4 million years ago.

• Ardi's upper canine teeth are more like the stubby ones of modern humans than the long, sharp, pointed ones of male chimpanzees and most other primates. An analysis of the tooth enamel suggests a diverse diet, including fruit and other woodland-based foods such as nuts and leaves.

• Paleoanthropologist Gen Suwa of the University of Tokyo reported that Ardi's face had a projecting muzzle, giving her an ape-like appearance. But it didn't thrust forward quite as much as the lower faces of modern African apes do. Some features of her skull, such as the ridge above the eye socket, are quite different from those of chimpanzees. The details of the bottom of the skull, where nerves and blood vessels enter the brain, indicate that Ardi's brain was positioned in a way similar to modern humans, possibly suggesting that the hominid brain may have been already poised to expand areas involving aspects of visual and spatial perception.

• Ardi's hand and wrist were a mix of primitive traits and a few new ones, but they don't include the hallmark traits of the modern tree-hanging, knuckle-walking chimps and gorillas. She had relatively short palms and fingers which were flexible, allowing her to support her body weight on her palms while moving along tree branches, but she had to be a careful climber because she lacked the anatomical features that allow modern-day African apes to swing, hang and easily move through the trees.

• The pelvis and hip show the gluteal muscles were positioned so she could walk upright.

• Her feet were rigid enough for walking but still had a grasping big toe for use in climbing.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation, the Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics of the University of California, Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and others.

On the Net:


September 28, 2009

BLOOD COVEN Is Auditioning Drummers:

If you or someone you know plays drums and is looking to join an established black/death metal band and lives in north east Ohio, please e-mail Dann Saladin:

Check out our profile for samples of our music and contact me if you are interested. Please spread the word. Thanks.
Blood Coven


September 25, 2009

One More Week Until: ZOMBIELAND!!!

Zombieland is an upcoming American post-apocalyptic zombie comedy, written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick and directed by Ruben Fleischer.
The film will be distributed by Columbia Pictures and is scheduled to be released on October 2, 2009.

"After America is ravaged by a zombie plague, a lone band of survivors fight the living dead while they cross the nation. They stop in an amusement park, where they believe they will be safe."

September 10, 2009

National Talk Like A Pirate Day: September 19

Liven your corporate board meeting!  Delight your women's group!  Celebrate International Talk Like a Pirate Day every September 19th by talking like a pirate.  Use the handy English/Pirate translator here and soon you'll be ful of "piratitude" and spouting phrases like "Avast ye comely wench" or "Here be me minivan". 

National Talk Like A Pirate Day countdown banner

Click here to get your very own countdown banner to the September 19, 2009's Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Check out Skullzneyez for all your Pirate schwag!
Check out Skullzneyez for all your Pirate schwag!
Check out Skullzneyez for all your Pirate schwag!

September 09, 2009

Why 09-09-09 Is So Special:

Everyone from brides and grooms to movie studio execs are celebrating the upcoming calendrical anomaly in their own way.

In Florida, at least one county clerk's office is offering a one-day wedding special for $99.99. The rarity of this Sept. 9 hasn't been lost on the creators of the iPod, who have moved their traditional Tuesday release day to Wednesday to take advantage of the special date. Focus Features is releasing their new film "9," an animated tale about the apocalypse, on the 9th.

Not only does the date look good in marketing promotions, but it also represents the last set of repeating, single-digit dates that we'll see for almost a century (until January 1, 2101), or a millennium (mark your calendars for January 1, 3001), depending on how you want to count it.

Though technically there's nothing special about the symmetrical date, some concerned with the history and meaning of numbers ascribe powerful significance to 09/09/09.

For cultures in which the number nine is lucky, Sept. 9 is anticipated - while others might see the date as an ominous warning.

Math magic

Modern numerologists - who operate outside the realm of real science - believe that mystical significance or vibrations can be assigned to each numeral one through nine, and different combinations of the digits produce tangible results in life depending on their application.

As the final numeral, the number nine holds special rank. It is associated with forgiveness, compassion and success on the positive side as well as arrogance and self-righteousness on the negative, according to numerologists.

Though usually discredited as bogus, numerologists do have a famous predecessor to look to. Pythagoras, the Greek mathematician and father of the famous theorem, is also credited with popularizing numerology in ancient times.

"Pythagoras most of all seems to have honored and advanced the study concerned with numbers, having taken it away from the use of merchants and likening all things to numbers," wrote Aristoxenus, an ancient Greek historian, in the 4th century B.C.

As part of his obsession with numbers both mathematically and divine, and like many mathematicians before and since, Pythagoras noted that nine in particular had many unique properties.

Any grade-schooler could tell you, for example, that the sum of the two-digits resulting from nine multiplied by any other single-digit number will equal nine. So 9x3=27, and 2+7=9.

Multiply nine by any two, three or four-digit number and the sums of those will also break down to nine. For example: 9x62 = 558; 5+5+8=18; 1+8=9.

Sept. 9 also happens to be the 252nd day of the year (2 + 5 +2)...

Loving 9

Both China and Japan have strong feelings about the number nine. Those feelings just happen to be on opposite ends of the spectrum.

The Chinese pulled out all the stops to celebrate their lucky number eight during last year's Summer Olympics, ringing the games in at 8 p.m. on 08/08/08. What many might not realize is that nine comes in second on their list of auspicious digits and is associated with long life, due to how similar its pronunciation is to the local word for long-lasting (eight sounds like wealth).

Historically, ancient Chinese emperors associated themselves closely with the number nine, which appeared prominently in architecture and royal dress, often in the form of nine fearsome dragons. The imperial dynasties were so convinced of the power of the number nine that the palace complex at Beijing's Forbidden City is rumored to have been built with 9,999 rooms.

Japanese emperors would have never worn a robe with nine dragons, however.

In Japanese, the word for nine is a homophone for the word for suffering, so the number is considered highly unlucky - second only to four, which sounds like death.

Many Japanese will go so far as to avoid room numbers including nine at hotels or hospitals, if the building planners haven't already eliminated them altogether.

September 03, 2009

The Chupacabra Caught?

by Mike Krumboltz

It really does exist! Maybe! The famed chupacabra has apparently been found, and it's a Texan.

Or at least it was. The beast is now dead, but news of its capture near Blanco, Texas, inspired Bigfoot-sized searches. Lookups on "chupacabra" surged a whopping 571%, and related queries on "what does chupacabra mean" also roared. (For the record, its rough translation is "goat sucker.") The find also inspired renewed interest in the equally notorious Montauk Monster.

Jerry Ayer, owner of Blanco Taxidermy School, has possession of the mythical beast's body. According to CNN, the animal was discovered by one of Ayer's students. The student had "placed catch an unidentified animal that had gotten into a family member's barn." Little did the student know the animal in question was (maybe) the chupacabra.

In the video from CNN (which is pretty gross, so beware), Ayer shows off some of the unusual features of the animal, including abnormally long legs and teeth. It looks a bit like the world's ugliest (and meanest) dog.

Of course, this is hardly the first time someone has claimed to have captured the chupacabra. In years past, brave souls have spotted it in places ranging from Russia to Maine to the Philippines. Often the animal is spotted by folks who conveniently forget to snap a photo.

Not so this time. Ayer says he plans to preserve the animal and then donate it to a local museum so it can be enjoyed by others. As the taxidermist puts it, the beast is "a tremendous conversation piece." Sort of like the Mona Lisa or a really stellar collection of garden gnomes.

August 06, 2009

'80s teen flick director John Hughes dies in NYC:

By HILLEL ITALIE, AP National Writer Hillel Italie, Ap National Writer – 22 mins ago

NEW YORK – Writer-director John Hughes, Hollywood's youth impresario of the 1980s and '90s who captured the teen and preteen market with such favorites as "Home Alone," "The Breakfast Club" and "Ferris Bueller's Day Off," died Thursday, a spokeswoman said. He was 59.

Hughes died of a heart attack during a morning walk in Manhattan, Michelle Bega said. He was in New York to visit family.

Jake Bloom, Hughes' longtime attorney, said he was "deeply saddened and in shock" to learn of the director's death.

A native of Lansing, Mich., who later moved to suburban Chicago and set much of his work there, Hughes rose from ad writer to comedy writer to silver screen champ with his affectionate and idealized portraits of teens, whether the romantic and sexual insecurity of "Sixteen Candles," or the J.D. Salinger-esque rebellion against conformity in "The Breakfast Club."

Hughes' ensemble comedies helped make stars out of Molly Ringwald, Anthony Michael Hall, Ally Sheedy and many other young performers. He also scripted the phenomenally popular "Home Alone," which made little-known Macaulay Culkin a sensation as the 8-year-old accidentally abandoned by his vacationing family, and wrote or directed such hits as "National Lampoon's Vacation," "Pretty in Pink," "Planes, Trains & Automobiles" and "Uncle Buck."

"I was a fan of both his work and a fan of him as a person," Culkin said. "The world has lost not only a quintessential filmmaker whose influence will be felt for generations, but a great and decent man."

Devin Ratray, best known for playing Culkin's older brother Buzz McCallister in the "Home Alone" films, said he remained close to Hughes over the years.

"He changed my life forever," Ratray said. "Nineteen years later, people from all over the world contact me telling me how much 'Home Alone' meant to them, their families, and their children."

Other actors who got early breaks from Hughes included John Cusack ("Sixteen Candles"), Judd Nelson ("The Breakfast Club"), Steve Carell ("Curly Sue") and Lili Taylor ("She's Having a Baby").

Actor Matthew Broderick worked with Hughes in 1986 when he played the title character in "Ferris Bueller's Day Off."

"I am truly shocked and saddened by the news about my old friend John Hughes. He was a wonderful, very talented guy and my heart goes out to his family," Broderick said.

Ben Stein, who played the monotone economics teacher calling the roll and repeatedly saying "Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?", said Hughes was a towering talent.

"He made a better connection with young people than anyone in Hollywood had ever made before or since," Stein said on Fox Business Network. "It's incredibly sad. He was a wonderful man, a genius, a poet. I don't think anyone has come close to him as being the poet of the youth of America in the postwar period. He was to them what Shakespeare was to the Elizabethan Age.

"You had a regular guy — just an ordinary guy. If you met him, you would never guess he was a big Hollywood power."

As Hughes advanced into middle age, his commercial touch faded and, in Salinger style, he increasingly withdrew from public life. His last directing credit was in 1991, for "Curly Sue," and he wrote just a handful of scripts over the past decade. He was rarely interviewed or photographed.

Associated Press writer Amy Westfeldt, Entertainment Writer Douglas J. Rowe and Drama Writer Michael Kuchwara contributed to this report from New York. AP writer Solvej Schou contributed from Los Angeles.

July 12, 2009

Bacon Explosion Now Available Ready-To-Eat:

Via By Owen Morris

Here's an update on the bacon explosion guys, Aaron Chronister and Jason Day. The two amateur barbecue enthusiasts' recipe for bacon-stuffed-in-sausage-stuffed-in-bacon took the Internet by storm, landing them on the pages of the New York Times and with a six-figure book deal.

Since then, countless people have tried to make the bacon explosion. But the original was smoked for hours, and because many people don't own smokers they tried to make it on grills and in ovens with varying degrees of success.

To help solve the problem, Chronister and Day are now selling a "fully smoked heat and eat" version on their Web site, BBQ Addicts. It's packaged in Missouri and shipped in dried ice.

"We wanted to release it in time for the Fourth of July," Chronister explained, "but it took a month and a half to get the USDA approval and we missed by a couple days. But hey, there is still Labor Day."

Since these packaged bacon explosion is already smoked and cooked, it doesn't need fancy equipment.

"All they've got to do is put them on the grill or in the oven or even
the microwave and they're completely smoked and ready to go," Chronister said. "I've been
making mine in the oven because there's still some fat on them and on
the grill it could catch fire. But grill works fine."

The bacon
explosion retails for $17.99 for a half (feeds six) and $29.99 for
a whole (feeds 10-12). Chronister and Day are also working on getting the explosion into grocery
stores and elsewhere including a famous barbecue restaurant. "The restaurant is very well-known ... it has
multiple locations and people will be able to go in and just pick one
right up."

They're halfway through writing their book, Barbecue Makes Everything Better, which is about "taking everyday recipes and making barbecue versions of
them." And they will release a version of their burnt finger rub.

both kept their days jobs, but the bacon explosion takes up the rest of their time, Chronister said. "We work 24/7. Especially this packaging and with the USDA ... we're counting on people liking it and I believe they will."

July 10, 2009

Want to make 80K a year? Try casting a spell:

LONDON (Reuters) – Fancy 80,000 dollars a year on a stress-free job with flexible working hours and no need to wear a suit?

Well, grab your black pointy hat, take out that rusty black hessian drape from the back of the wardrobe and refresh your memory on how to turn your grumpy neighbor into a mouse. Somerset tourist attraction Wookey Hole caves is advertising for a "witch" and has already received 100 applicants since the beginning of the week.

Legend has it that the caves, near Wells, were home to the Wookey Witch who was turned to stone by the medieval Abbott of Glastonbury to rid villagers of her curse.

The vacancy has arisen because the previous incumbent has retired.

The successful candidate, who will be living in a "spacious" cave, has to cackle, not be allergic to cats and will be asked to perform "a range of tasks" including magic at an open audition scheduled for July 28.

But the appointee need not be scary.

"We want a friendly witch with a devilish element," said Gayle Pennington, marketing assistant at the caves said on Wednesday.

"We're a family attractions place so we don't want to frighten the children."

In keeping with modern times, the role is open to men, women and trans-gender witches to comply with sexual discrimination laws.

June 28, 2009

Re: Don't Even Reply:

VIA Today On The Interwebs

Don't Even Reply is a website by a prick who messes with people and then posts the results online.  According to John, the prick: "This is a collection of e-mails I have sent to people who post classified ads. My goal is to mess with them, confuse them, and/or piss them off. These are the ones that succeeded." He explains further:
Why don't they just ignore you?
Most of them do. I'd say only 10% of people I write to write back.

What is with all the different names you use?
They are all me, just different e-mail accounts.

HEY! I recognize myself in one of these e-mails, you prick!
No you don't. You're wrong. Go away.

Why are a lot of these e-mails sexist?
It seems to piss the women off more. I'm not really sexist or racist, but I still find it hilarious.

How can I contact you?
Put up a classified ad, and try to sound like an idiot. I'll find you.

No seriously. I want to give you money.
In that case, I'll try to respond, but I do get a lot of e-mails so don't think I am a jerk if I don't."

And here are some samples, enjoy! 

Original ad: 

litter of 6 kittens up for adoption! they are all 3 weeks old and are looking for a good home. contact if interested.

From Mike Hunt to *********@***********.org 
I am interested in taking all six kittens off of your hands. How much do you want for them? 

From Shannon ******* to Me 
Are you going to take care of all of these kittens? I want to make sure they all find a good home, and was expecting to sell them one at a time. Are you able to house all six of them? 

From Mike Hunt to Shannon ******* 
To be honest, I own a pet Bengal Tiger and he is on a strict diet of cats. I usually feed him one cat every couple of days, so this litter should hold him over for a while. Don't worry though, I'll take good care of the kittens until I feed them to him. 

From Shannon ******* to Me 
That is horrible! You will not get a single kitten from me. I really hope you are not serious. 
From Mike Hunt to Shannon ******* 

I was kidding. I seriously need all six kittens though. Disregard anything I said about a tiger. 

From Shannon ******* to Me 

And a second:
"Original ad:
if anyone wants a ride from baltimore to nyc tomorow let me know! i am driving up there sometime tomorow afternoon and would be glad to help someone out if they want to throw up some money for gas. i drive a hybrid, so i wont need much!
From Mike Partlow to *************@*********.org

I do need a ride to New York tomorrow. That would be great. My only concern is the fact that you drive a hybrid car. I don't want to give people the idea that I care about the environment. Do you have another, more manly car that we could ride up in? I really don't want to be seen in a hybrid. I'll gladly compensate you for gas.

From christine ********* to Me
no all i have is my hybrid. what is the big deal, who cares what people think? u should be glad to help the enviroment!

From Mike Partlow to christine **********
I'm sorry Christine but it isn't the 60's anymore. People aren't a bunch of earth-saving hippies that run around and hug trees anymore. Does your car have tinted windows? I really don't want to be seen riding in that bitch-mobile. My only request is that you stop by a lake somewhere so I can dump a can of motor oil in it, to make up for all of the earth that your car will be saving. Don't worry, I'll pay for the motor oil.

From christine ********* to Me
wtf is wrong with u! im not giving u a ride ur a jerk!!!

From Mike Partlow to christine **********
Well I am sorry you won't have the privilege of riding with me. Fortunately for me, I found a better, more badass ride to NYC. I'll be sure to wave at your crappy little hybrid as we pass you in our F-350, spraying cans of aerosol out the window and throwing empty six-pack holders into the sea.

June 22, 2009

Brown Sugar Bacon Waffles:


A pool of maple syrup, into which I will plunge.

A pool of maple syrup, into which I will plunge.

Brown Sugar Bacon Waffles.

Do I have your attention yet? Yes, that’s right, I said waffles, and bacon, and brown sugar, and ohmygod! So back when I lived in North Carolina, there was a popular breakfast joint in my town named Elmo’s Diner. On their large menu of breakfasty-goodness there was one item that never failed to take my breath away – the bacon-waffle. Just finishing one of these monstrosities of deliciousness was a difficult task, once properly slathered with butter and real maple syrup. Yes, my friends, it is a heart attack on a platter, an untimely (but scrumptious!) early death just waiting to happen… and I loved him. It was a love that dare not speak its name – the kind of guilty pleasure indulgence food straight from the fatty-food-lovin’-Paula-Deen-butter-guzzlin’-southern-nation. You try and hate on it, but in the end you just can’t… because you’re too full.

Since moving away, there have been many things I’ve missed, and that bacon waffle is one of them. Since recently purchasing a Belgian-waffle iron, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of recreating this masterpiece. My first attempt was okay – decent tasting waffle (if a bit heavy), and delicious bacon crumbles. It definitely satisfied, but it wasn’t the kind of gluttonous, beautiful meal I remembered. So what do I usually do in the face of such a challenge? Go to the interwebz, of course! A bunch of googling later, I had some contender recipes, but none that really called to me with the promise of that long lost waffle of love. Until I found this one. The title, the pictures… I was sold. “I must make these,” I said, “and they will be awesome.”

Next step? Tracking down the best possible bacon available for this noble enterprise. I recently discovered a little butcher shop down the street from my work that puts out some of the best meat products I’ve seen in years. On splurge-nights, the boy toy and I get ourselves a big honkin’ rib eye (I’m talkin’ the couple-inches-thick kind) and proceed to have a steak better than a lot of restaurants I’ve been to recently. Their smoked products are out of this freakin’ world, and I was overwhelmed with joy upon finding they offered bacon in both hickory and apple wood smoked varieties. I scurried home with a pound of some of the most beautiful, thick-cut bacon I’ve ever had the pleasure to own or eat (hickory, in this instance).

Homer Simpson voice: "Mmmmmmm... bacon!"

Homer Simpson voice: "Mmmmmmm... bacon!"

What intrigued/thrilled me the most about this particular bacon-waffle recipe was the semi-candying of the bacon itself under a veil of brown sugar. It seemed, to the imaginary taste buds in my head, to be a great way to incorporate that sweet-salty-meaty-hot combo I love so dearly. So, like any recipe I stumble across, I made a few adjustments and plunged right in:

Brown Sugar Bacon Waffles

(adapted from Joy the Baker)

Step One: cut a hole in the box… um, er, I mean prepare the candied bacon!

The original recipe says to use 10 slices of bacon – which I did – but mine were so thick and luscious, I had to make a few adjustments in the baking time. My 10 slices were just shy of a whole pound, but ymmv depending on the brand and thickness of your bacon.

Lay your bacon out in a baking pan of some sort, with a tall enough edge to contain all the fat that will render off without splashing when moved. In order to fit in my pan I had to overlap the pieces a bit – this is okay. Sprinkle the top of your bacon layer generously with the following mixture:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

  • 1/8 tsp. onion powder

  • 1/8 tsp. garlic powder

  • 1/8 tsp. smoked paprika

  • fresh ground pepper (to taste)

I only bake with the prettiest possible spices.

I only bake with the prettiest possible spices.



My bacon sparkles in the sunlight.

My bacon sparkles in the sunlight.

Bake this lovely concoction in a preheated 375-degree oven for 20-30 minutes, again based on the thickness of your bacon. Mine took 30 minutes, while the original recipe called for only 20. I suggest checking it at 20 minutes and adding more time as necessary. You want the bacon to look crisp but not burned. Immediately transfer out of the greasy sugar sludge with tongs to a cutting board to cool (don’t use paper towels for draining – the bacon will stick!). Once cool, chop it into happy bits of a size amenable to the chef (too big and they will make your waffle iron difficult to close, so be wary). Make sure to eat a few to make sure that they are okay… then a few more… oh crap, remember to save some for the waffles!

Bacon candy! *drool*

Bacon candy! *drool*

Now the waffle batter!

  • 2 3/4 c. all-purpose flour

  • 1/4 c. cornstarch

  • 1 tbsp. baking powder

  • 1 tsp. baking soda

  • 1 tsp. salt

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup canola oil

  • 4 large eggs

  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

  • 2 1/2 cups buttermilk (I use 6 tbsp. buttermilk powder + water)

In a large bowl combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, salt and brown sugar (if using powdered buttermilk substitute, add it here to the dry ingredients).  Whisk to blend.  In a  medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, buttermilk (or water, if using powdered buttermilk) and vanilla extract.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and fold.  Once almost fully incorporated, add the bacon bites.  Stir.  Try not to over mix the batter or the waffles will become tough.  It’s ok if a few lumps remain in the batter.

Cook according to your waffle machine instructions. Generally, you should watch the steam coming off of your iron – when it starts to slow down or stop, your waffle is probably ready. It can take a while to get through all the batter – I made at least 8 Belgian-waffle sized lovelies from my batch (hard to count when they keep getting eaten). What should you do to pass the time while your waffles are cooking? Well, if you’re me, you start eating waffles! And drink beer, that’s always a good choice (it pairs very nicely with both waffles and pancakes, I’ve found). In desperate times, get out a laser-pointer and make your cat run in circles around the kitchen floor. That’s always good for a laugh! Next thing you know, your waffle will be done!

Hot, steamy waffles!

Hot, steamy waffles!

One of these days she'll catch that damn laser spot!

One of these days she'll catch that damn laser spot!

Behold! The first bacon waffle! (and there was much rejoicing)

Behold! The first bacon waffle! (and there was much rejoicing)

Serve immediately (can keep warm in a low oven while batches finish), topped with real maple syrup (none of that fake stuff, you pansies!) and butter if you dare. Be prepared for moans of ecstasy to escape the mouths of you and your loved ones. Make this for your date and he/she will imminently propose marriage, simply to have these waffles of love be a regular part of his or her meal schedule. Warning : Waffles-of-Love have been known to cause pregnancy in certain circumstances. Please practice safe syrup.