Sunday, August 01, 2010

Twenty questions

"What's jukebox? Is it a kind of juice box?
And what's juice? Is it a kind of Coca-Cola?
And what's Coca-Cola? Is it a kind of MTV?
And what's MTV? Is it a kind of sex?"

"Geez, what do they teach you in school?!"


Spontaneous free association that happened while I was taking a shower.

Monday, May 03, 2010

US church censors YouTube

If you try googling "gravey and jobriath" and click the first YouTube link, you'll be greeted with the message "This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Evangelical Lutheran Church in America." The problem is, they don't own the copyright to that clip. It's a clip from The Simpsons that parodies Davey and Goliath, a children's show to which the church actually does own the copyright. Still, this is a parody and should be a clear-cut case of Fair Use.

In the episode "HOMR", "Gravey and Jobriath" was a show watched by Ned Flanders and his sons at an animation festival. The episode concerned Gravey's attempts to construct a pipe bomb ("to blow up Planned Parenthood!"). In contrast to the traditionally animated style of The Simpsons, the segment was created using stop-motion animation much like the original series. It ended with Gravey shoving the pipe bomb into Jobriath's mouth for his "lack of faith," followed by an off-screen explosion and cheering from the Flanders children.

Fox or Gracie Films could claim the rights to this clip, not the ELCA. So what's going on? Is the church taking down these clips because they look too much like Davey and Goliath? Strange then that a search for "davey and goliath" on YouTube returns several hits. The church seems to be targeting this parody specifically.

When YouTube user Kyntteri1 received a takedown notice, he responded by posting the notice itself in a new video:

Saturday, April 17, 2010


(Inspired by a dream I had last night.)

"And it was just standing there, someone had just put it there right inside the door."
"A bucket? Really?"
"Yeah, a metal bucket."
Nick gave the other two an incredulous look, but didn't seem to have any more questions, so Terry continued.
"I took a look, and it had these things in it, like... some kinda insect."
"Wait, long worm things, lots of little legs?" Nick asked. "And sort of yellowish, it had some sort of skin?"
"Uh, yeah, you seen these things?"
"It's so weird. We had one of those in our garage just the other day. I've never seen anything like them."
"Maybe it got out of the bucket," said Stewart. "Maybe someone was collecting them."
"No, I mean the bucket. There was a metal bucket in my garage, those things were swimming around in it."
"When?" asked Terry.
"It's... I'm not sure, I just got home dropping off the kids, so it must have been Sunday."
"That's the same day."
The sprinklers on Henderson's lawn turned themselves on. Terry glanced across the street, then back at the others.
"So who the hell is putting these things in our homes?" he demanded. "Who even knows what these things are, if I hadn't seen it first my kids or my dog could have gotten there, those things could've been all over my house."
"What'd you do with it?" Nick asked.
"I just dumped Drano in it 'til those suckers were dead. Then I dumped them in the trash. What'd you do?"
"I poured gasoline in there. That seemed to kill them. Then I lit them up to make sure, and threw them out."
"Good. Glad that's taken care of. I don't know about you, but the whole thing had me kinda shaken. We don't usually lock the doors during the day, who knows what could'a happened? Tell you the truth, I had nightmares. I got kids in that house."
"Tell me about it, those things were nasty. Could have had some sort of disease."
The sprinklers stopped. Stewart cleared his throat.
"You know, Henderson put in cameras last week," he said. "He's been trying to catch those punks that keep stealing his garden gnomes. His house is right across from yours, maybe he got the bucket guy on tape?"

"OK, let's see. Not sure I got the– oh, there it goes." Henderson settled down in his chair, bony knuckles white where he held on for dear life to the remote. Terry stood beside him, arms crossed, and Nick hunched down in the sofa.
"Go back three days. Sunday."
The tape reversed, and they could see the past three days of their lives flicker by. There was Martha with the dog, there were Terry's kids, Terry's car. Nick blinked past, probably getting the paper. The weekday in the lower right corner ticked down to Sunday.
"Stop. Play it from here."
Sure enough, right after Nick's car left his driveway, someone carrying a bucket entered the screen. Nick leaned in closer to the TV.
"I can't see what he looks like, it's too far away."
"Yeah, it's not really set up to see your yard. Sorry."
"Looks like he has a green sweater, and probably jeans."
The figure opened Nick's garage door, put the bucket inside, closed the door and left.
"I can't even make out his hair color."
"It's OK," said Terry. "He's gotta come back, he was in my kitchen too. Maybe we'll get a better look, there's a pretty good view of my door there."
They watched and waited.

After several minutes and no movement, Nick's car pulled back into the driveway. The garage door opened, the car eased in and stopped. Nick got out, and seemed to spot the bucket almost immediately. The mystery man had set it down out of view from the camera, but they could see Nick warily approaching something and bending down to take a look. Then he was gone.
"OK," Terry said, drumming his fingers on his biceps. "Now what? Where'd you go?"
"To get the gas."
"You're taking your sweet time."
"Man, I don't know. We should at least see the flames though."
Minutes later, they could see Nick again, coming out of his garage, bucket in hand.
"Here we go, I'm throwing it out."
"That's not– Where are you headed? That's..."
They watched in silence as Nick walked over to his neighbor's house, opened the kitchen door and placed the bucket inside. Then he returned to his house and closed the garage door. Henderson raised his eyebrows, clasped his hands and looked quietly at the floor.
"Nick, what the fuck!"
"Terry, wait! Wait a second, that's not what happened, that's not how I remember it!"
"It's right there on the screen, man! What the fuck were you thinking?!"
"Take it easy! There has to be an explanation, I didn't do that! You know I wouldn't!"
"Then who did, huh? He looked an awful lot like you, Nick!"
"Let go, what are you doing? Stop! Look! Look at the screen!"
"Just look! It's you!"
On the screen, Terry was carrying the bucket across his own yard.
"I thought you said you threw it away."
"I did!"
"That's not what it looks like."
Instead, he walked past the garbage cans and across the cul-de-sac. To Henderson's house. The last thing they saw of him was Terry's face, clear as day, disappearing off the lower end of the screen.
"Jim, did you find a bucket somewhere in here? Jim?" Nick turned toward Henderson, who still had his eyes fixed on a point somewhere on the floor. "Mr. Henderson. Mr– oh shit. Oh shit!" A dark liquid flowed out of Henderson's nose, covering his shirt. "Is that blood?"
"Yeah. Yeah. Nick. Nick, I think we're screwed."
"Before you went to get the gas, did any of those little things, kinda, jump at you?"
Terry suddenly looked very calm and vulnerable. The rage had completely left him.
"At my face? Yeah." Nick shook his head, as if trying to dislodge something. "You?"
"Yeah. I would say my nose."
"When you... When you went to kill them, were you... dizzy?"
"The memory is kinda hazy."
"It... never happened, huh?"
"They got us."
"Man... What... what the fuck... happened to us..." Nick collapsed.

Terry had come halfway across the street before he'd lost control of his legs. All of his senses were numbing. He could barely see his front lawn through the blood and the tears. Part of him was thankful that he could no longer see the crumpled bodies of his wife and children. He could only pray that they were unconscious. Henderson's head had ruptured only seconds earlier, spewing forth the creatures Terry and Nick had both thought they had killed. Terry wanted to scream with guilt and anguish, but there was no voice, no energy left. He could feel a massive head ache coming on. He clenched his teeth and waited for the inevitable.

Behind him, Henderson's sprinklers turned on.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Best Of iaoth's Twitter

2008-07-13 20:50:38
Went out yesterday to buy candy and bumped into a co-worker. Went out today to get thai food and saw a hare. Outside: It's an adventure.

2008-07-28 16:43:59
Washed a bloodstain off the window. Let's hope CSI doesn't stop by.

2008-11-16 20:09:23
Futurama idea #42, "The Wouldawannatron": Postdicts what a deceased person or persons would have wanted. "It's what they would have wanted."

2009-01-11 12:41:00
Movie idea "Blackjack": Allied soldiers in Iraq aiming for a pip sum of 21 while offing people from the most-wanted deck of cards. "Hit me!"

2009-01-12 18:50:44
Nothing is more fun than sports. And by that I mean that I would rather do nothing. (That's so pithy Groucho Marx must've said it already.)

2009-03-07 01:09:19
As with most nerds, my mental development seems to have stopped short around the age of 12. Luckily I was very mature for my age.

2009-03-15 10:05:10
When I woke up, I had another image in my mind: A Kung Fu school for kids, and the boys have just found the pressure point for farting.

2009-04-02 17:19:02
I fear that if I ever get drunk I'd start a fight. I might also sing. Basically I'd be Irish.

2009-04-05 16:49:16
cuz ah-I would ride a cab 10 miles and ah-I'd ride maybe 10 miles more, just to be almost right at your door, cuz you live on the 23rd floor

2009-04-15 19:08:12
Pyrrhouette: A move that wins you the dance-off, but at a terrible price.

2009-04-15 05:41:00
If I ever draw up a will, it'll say "I faked my own death. Leave my shit alone."

2009-04-26 18:54:23
Farted in the shower. It stunk, but it stunk like home. It was then that I realized the truth of the old saying "Home is where the fart is."

2009-04-30 05:33:32
Later that night I had a dream about a debate exploring Swedish literature to determine our attitude toward Nazi Germany throughout history.

2009-05-26 11:56:34
Ever lit a match to get rid of fart smell? Ever hear girls claim that their farts don't smell? Ever notice that girls like lighting candles?

2009-06-07 16:39:26
To fred a stair: To dance flamboyantly up and down a set of stairs.

2009-06-21 13:31:30
In the 8th grade I told some classmates that I'm 1/4 african. They suggested I cut that 4th off. I cried "Not that!" and covered my crotch.

2009-06-26 15:16:14
I just had a Bacardi Breezer in the bath while reading a book. I don't think I've ever been more alliterative.

2009-07-03 14:37:04
Hojta högt! Bomber och granater; Hojta högt! Sulfit och sulfater; Hojta högt! Rimmar hur jag vill; Om du inte hojtar högt är du en salt sill

2009-07-06 18:42:09
I saw a guy with a shirt the back of which said "Latino Gigolo $500" and right across the price, in script, "first night free"

2009-07-13 07:37:43
Call me crazy, but I think I ought to be real smooth after all of those internal dialogues I've had with all of those imaginary people.

2009-07-15 06:57:55
Lately I'm starting to realize that you could take almost any of my tweets and use as a starting point for a bad guy's evil plan monologue.

2009-07-22 08:45:40
I feel good when I'm productive, I feel bad when I'm not. Why haven't I been conditioned to be productive all the time? Pavlov is a jerk.

2009-07-26 14:14:36
It's only when you're home alone for the week-end that you can zone out for a while, then look around you and think "Where are my pants?"

2009-08-05 10:13:54
"I always knew yours was a special brand of idiocy, but this really takes the cake, George. This really takes the whole goddamn bakery."

2009-08-14 09:16:50
Dipping bread in satay is the smartest thing I have ever done.

2009-08-23 09:23:29
Did I get the world's smallest bladder today? Is that some kind of hosted superpower, like the Uni-Power? Am I Captain Tiny Bladder now?

2009-08-29 19:16:44
I happened upon a chord progression on the piano that made me very sad. Then I realized it was from a Spice Girls song.

2009-08-30 12:24:12
Sundays are slow days. It's the one day I can't rely on the Internet to spoonfeed me information. I guess today I'd have to go to church.

2009-08-31 05:26:19
Just thought of a sketch where the lead tires of the backup singers' repetition and does everything within musical reason to shut them up.

2009-09-01 20:59:12
I have a list of boring/scary stuff that I probably have to hire someone to do for me. Or I could just grow up. No wait that's on the list.

2009-09-08 07:50:24
The reason every nerd strives to be so smart is that he's hoping to become a strategic advantage and be seduced by smoking hot enemy agents.

2009-09-11 14:50:29
Kids. I want to grab them by the neck and scream: "The only reason you exist is because your mom & dad love each other!" That'll teach them.

2009-09-12 11:25:40
Lately, a lot of people claim to be high on life. Is there a street name for that?

2009-09-16 06:58:04
Receptionists are always diverting attention elsewhere. That must be a terrible job for people who crave attention, like for example women.

2009-09-18 15:06:29
If the saying went "first time's a charm" then I would probably try new things much more often.

2009-09-19 18:42:05
I grew up watching satire before I knew what satire was. I just liked watching silly people. Now I can't take the real world seriously.

2009-09-20 07:10:04
If the enemy of my enemy is my friend, then surely the friend of my friend is my enemy.

2009-09-20 17:42:00
Time will tell. Unfortunately, God only knows, and he's not telling.

2009-09-20 18:47:33
By combining two offensive stereotypes I have come to a startling conclusion: All Mexicans are gay.

2009-09-30 21:38:16
I don't count sheep. I imagine soothing conversation with beautiful women. If I ever met Jessica Alba in person she'd think I'm narcoleptic.

2009-10-15 20:33:44
A professor once told me that a sense of humour is indicative of intelligence. She then adjusted her glasses and honked her clown's nose.

2009-11-03 15:35:50
The problem with failure is its contrast against the potential for success. If you just eliminate success, failure isn't such a big deal.

2009-11-10 11:59:06
Who's a good boy? Who's a good boy? Who's a- No seriously, who's a good boy? Who's a good boy?! Answer me, you stupid dog! Bad dog!

2009-11-10 12:41:13
I take out my johnson in the the john, look at my stuff from Johnson & Johnson, and wonder why humans have no imagination.

2009-11-23 21:24:58
Convinced that my dogs talk about me behind my back. They exchange knowing looks when I sneeze. It's not my imagin- Wait, I don't have dogs.

2009-11-25 09:59:31
If people only spoke when they had something intelligent to say, then I for one would enjoy the silence.

Thursday, December 10, 2009