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Monthly Archives: April 2011

Hey, Baby Boomers: We R’nt Entitled, We R Stupid!

Alls I needs to know is this city is delicious. News shmews!

by Kristen

I tire of my parents’ generation (the “Younger Boomers,” born between 1955-1964) telling my generation (the “Millennials,” born between 1977-1992) that we have a sense of entitlement about free online content, especially in regard to the New York Times paywall. It makes my generation sound cheap and stupid, and I would like to argue that we are mainly the latter. Based on how we spend time on the internet and what we are interested in, we were never going to buy the digital NYT. I care about my mom, a journalist, and about the decline of engaging content online, yet I think her generation has some misconceptions about mine. I am not enthusiastic about this argument, but regardless: We don’t buy the NYT mainly because we are moronic, not because we have a sense of internet entitlement.

1. Fancy City Newspaper Say Wha?
The NYT wants you to believe that the majority of readers are young. In 2009, they reported their readership’s largest age group as 25 to 54. But once you unclump the ages and make 25 to 35 a separate category (and therefore about 16% of readership), the largest readership is actually ages 50+ (at about 37%). The Pew Research Center found only 17% of the population reads a national newspaper like the NYT. That means my generation’s interest makes up 16% of that 17%. I’m no mathemagician, but that isn’t a lot of Millennials. The point is, the majority of us weren’t reading it anyway, and we certainly aren’t going to start with the paywall.

Scoreboard: Entitlement= 0, Stupidity= 1

2. If by “News” you mean “Weather”
The #1 news subject we are looking for online? At 81%: the weather. We literally only care about the world around us, in so much as it is made up of air at a certain temperature and humidity which allows us to continue to play video games and mouth breathe.

Scoreboard: Entitlement= 0, Stupidity= 2

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Posted by on April 29, 2011 in Kristen, Pop Culture, Top Fives

 

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Weird Law Quiz: Maine or Georgia?

by Kristen

Having lived in Maine and Georgia, I believe they’re both politically and culturally wackadoodle places. Our country just celebrated the 150th anniversary of the Civil War (or War of Northern Aggression, depending on where you live), and while Mainers and Georgians think they are wildly different, sometimes it can be hard to tell the difference. Maybe we are more alike than we think, in that we govern badly and make weird laws. Take Kristen’s Quiz!

Laws that were or are on the books: Maine or Georgia?

(Note: This fun quiz list was made by doing some very light research on the internets. Please do not send emails.)

You don't own me, man.

1. It is illegal to walk your alligator in public or to own an armadillo.

2. No one may carry an ice cream cone in his or her back pocket on a Sunday.

3. Shotguns are required to be taken to a church in the event of a Native American attack.

4. Firearms cannot be carried in a government building, place of worship, or a bar (unless the owner of the bar says it is ok).

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Posted by on April 27, 2011 in Travel

 

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Advice from one beach tourist to another

by Lindsay

After a week-long trip to a resort in Mexico, I made a few observations about my fellow tourists, and learned some lessons that I think others should reflect on before hitting the beach or traveling.

1. If your girlfriend is passed out on the floor, don’t guzzle your wine while two other men attend to her.

2. Male belly button rings are never acceptable.

3. Buying cigars could result in a drug deal.

4. Breast feeding a child the same size as you while on the beach is not OK.

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Posted by on April 27, 2011 in Abroad, Guest Listers, Travel

 

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Silly British Traditions to Adopt While Leading up to the Royal Wedding

By Kristy

While I appreciate the argument that as Americans, long ago castrated from our mother-land of Great Britain, we should not give a toss about the Royals (note: Britishism here), it is nearly impossible not to be aware of the fanfare and ceremony of a momentous occasion such as the wedding of a future King.  Therefore, this week I will be adopting these rituals as a salute to my homeland (both ancestrally, and from 2007-9*).  I suggest you do the same.

Silly British Traditions to Adopt While Leading up to the Royal Wedding

1. Throw a “cheerio ol’ chap” into any of your email or phone correspondence

2. 4pm is now Tea Time, whether you like it or not

3. Wear a fascinator or Philip Treacy inspired hat to the office

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Nerdiest Chefs, Cookbooks and Recipes

By Kristy

Nerdiest Chefs:

1. Heston Blumenthal (Fat Duck, UK).

A centrifuge for sauces? An auditory scientist to assist in making the perfect crunch on your fish and chips?  Only Blumenthal would do this.  As a self-taught chef, he furthers the gastronomical education of other nerd-cooks by sponsoring a Ph.D. program in the UK, and by demonstrating his research and recipe-testing procedures through his cooking shows (which to my knowledge are not available in the US – but if you can find his series on Fantastical Feasts, where he recreates historical meals, you’ll thank me).  His cookbooks are also educational, but would require an extensive scientifically-equipped kitchen to carry out the recipes.  The Fat Duck is outside London, in Bray, but the newly opened Dinner is conveniently located in London proper.

2. Ferran Adria (El Bulli, Spain)

Blumenthal and Adria are constantly vying for the Top Restaurant in the World status, but in my mind Blumenthal is #1 (plus, he was the predecessor according to Herve This).  El Bulli is taking a break now until 2014, in part to reformulate their recipes, but there is no doubt that Adria is a culinary God, and a masterful nerd-chef.  His creations extend well beyond the look, feel, and sound of a typical meal, and he constantly strives to recreate the restaurant and culinary experience.  Of note, he took part in Harvard’s science of cooking lecture series this past year, and has created a foundation to serve as a think-tank for gastronomical creativity.

3. Joel Robuchon, the French chef who may have begun the molecular gastronomy movement, and who now condemns it

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The Unintentional Soundtrack to My Life

by Kristen

There is music that immediately makes me feel like a kid (TMNT theme), songs I inexplicably know all the words to (Reading Rainbow), and soundtracks that pinpoint the moment I was no longer a child (Dirty Dancing). For me, those lists could be endless, but there are a few tunes that  are so deeply engrained in my subconscious that they play in my head as if part of my life’s soundtrack. I would chose very different music to accent my days, I want to stress that, but these are the tunes I involuntarily hear:

1. The Jurassic Park Theme
When the movie came out in 1993, I saw it in the theater four times. It blew my 13-year-old mind and made me feel like anything was possible. (I’d like to say this is the movie that inspired me to be a scientist, but really it was the 1995 hit featuring infectious diseases and Rene Russo, Outbreak. I’m not kidding.)  Many years later when I moved out to Sapelo Island, full of wild animals and draped in Spanish moss, I felt like I was on a different planet. As I drove my golf cart from the ferry dock to my trailer, I used to hum Jurassic Park‘s theme song. Again, I’m not kidding. MY DOG’S NAME IS T REX. This movie changed my life.

2. The Imperial March
Whenever anyone of authority walks down a hallway, this song plays in my head. I hear it when I’m in a hurry at the grocery store, plowing
through aisles and trying not to give the Vader Force Choke to people in my way. The Imperial March was the only ringtone I ever purchased, mostly because I thought it was funny to say, “Excuse me, that’s my mom calling.” Turns out, not everyone finds that funny. I honestly meant no harm by it and I find her lack of faith disturbing.

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Posted by on April 24, 2011 in Kristen, Pop Culture, Top Fives

 

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Street Food: 5 reasons to stop on the side of the road for some grub

by Kristy

Before street food gets any more good press and clever marketing, I need to stake a claim to my 5 favorite street foods.

1. Chicken Satay (Panang, Malaysia).  Something about the combination of lemongrass, peanuts and a very dirty grill make this the best Satay in the world.  For the last 11 years I have tried to find this distinct flavor everywhere, and I’ve never managed it.  I even wrote to Saveur magazine begging them to unearth this recipe after they devoted an entire issue to street food.  Alas, I may never taste this chicken perfection again.  Luckily, while in Malaysia, street satay was my daily breakfast.

2. Curry-wurst (Berlin, Germany).  This is only one of purportedly hundreds of sausage varieties in Germany, but its amazing.  Essentially, its a kielbasa with a curried tomato sauce, but with a pint of German beer, you’ll think it has to be more clever than that.

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