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The Ugly Sneakers Blog

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As sneaker culture has exploded, so has the demand for unique (or at least unusual) athletic footwear. Roundhouse Kicks is a new blog chronicling the missteps in the sneaker game. Fun stuff. I have to admit that I'm kind of feeling these shells, though....

"Born & raised in the City by the Bay" - Rappin 4-Tay

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TSOYA listener Josh Arcurio emailed me this link, and I had already clipped it, so I think that's a pretty good indication it's worth posting here.

Over on The Fader's blog, there's a great rundown of many of the most classic Bay Area hip-hop tracks by DJ Eleven. Unpretentious, accurate and inclusive. Nothing like moving to Los Angeles to remind one of what a San Franciscan one is...

And if all that reading material has you feinding for some video to watch, how about a few Yay Area classics, both new and old?

Rappin 4-Tay - "The Playas Club"


The Luniz - "I Got Five On It (Bay Area Ballaz Remix)"


Souls of Mischief - "93 Till Infinity"


Blackalicious - "Deception"

Hieroglyphics - "You'll Never Know"


Mac Dre - "Thizzle Dance"

DJ Shadow f. Turf Talk & Keak da Sneak - "Three Freaks"


E-40 f. Keak da Sneak "Tell Me When to Go"

No "It's Always Sunny"

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I know, I've been promising an "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia" interview for weeks now, but it looks like it's not happening. Unfortunately, somewhere between F/X's publicists (helpful) and the guys' personal publicist (not), everything broke down completely. I would presume this was because when I made initial arrangements a few months ago, the show was much, much less buzzed about then it is now. Also, Rob Corddry just had a baby, so that's looking bad, too. Sorry.

NPR Listeners: Exactly How You Picture Them

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Every year, National Public Radio does an extensive listener survey, which is designed to help them sell adverti... I mean encourage corporate giving which is graciously acknowledged with underwriting announcements. You can check it out here, but I'll try to highlight a few key/absurd points.

NPR News listeners are 84% white.

They are 78% more likely to categorize themselves as "liberal" and 2.27 times more likely to categorize themselves as "very liberal."

They are 97% more likely to belong to a country club.

They are 8.86 times more likely to read The Atlantic Monthly, and 5.66 times more likely to read The New Yorker. They are 73% less likely to read The Source. They are 76% more likely to watch The West Wing, which is double impressive because that's pretty close to the only prime time TV show they're MORE likely to watch.

They prefer Leno to Letterman and Conan to Kilborn or Kimmel, but they do like Letterman 17% better than the rest of America.

They're about 2.5 times more likely to visit Europe.

They are 58% more likely than the average American to play Frisbee, and 3.72 times more likely to go cross-country skiing. They are 2.22 times more likely to do Yoga. They are also 30% less likely to watch Pro Wrestling on TV.

In their leisure time, they are 79% more likely to birdwatch, 67% more likely to play chess, and 42% more likely to collect electric trains.

They are 92 percent more likely to shop at Nordstrom.

They are 41% less likely to buy a rap CD, and 93% more likely to buy a New Age CD.

They are 81% more likely to own an espresso maker.

They are three times more likely to own a Volvo, three times more likely to own a Subaru, and 3.9 times more likely to own a Saab.

They are 68% more likely to buy soy milk, and 67% more likely to buy veggie burgers.

They are 56% more likely to have a housekeeper.

All I can say is: hah hah hah.

How was work today?

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Jesse seems to be bak to full strength, but until I hear the difinitive "Sign off, NOW, Mr. Garden," am going to post a handful of other items. Specifically, Jesse asked me to post a little "Behind the Scenes" at the Onion. So here it is in all its boring glory!


While not at the Onion, this is how my day began: feeding the stray kittens in my back yard. Any day that begins with kittens can't be all that bad, I guess.


Following a quick trip to Costco, a subway ride and a lot of sweating, this is what I arrive to: air-conditioned comfort and Jessie Dean, my pal and our office manager. Any day she's in a good mood can't be all that bad, I guess.


(Note: Amelie asked that I replace her picture with something else. As I respect Amelie and her privacy, I am replacing it with the hand-drawn inspirational poster that is next to her desk.) Every day, I pass by Amelie Gillette (and a hand-drawn inspirational poster by her desk), AKA The Hater. As you you were once able to see, she's preparing to hate on something. I believe in this case it is Snakes On A Plane. Any day that begins with hating can't be all that bad, I guess.


Finally, I've handed my jokes to Dan and Eric, our interns, to type up and wind up in my office. I've been meaning to clean for a while. That couch, for example? It's under all the paper? Totally functional if I would move everything off of it. What you can't see in this photo is Joe's Cold Beverages, the bodega I run there. The three tenets are value, convenience and wetness of beverages. Temperature can vary. Any day with cold beverages can't be all that bad, I guess.


This is our Thursday meeting where we go over certain daily and weekly content, like Stat Shot, Infogrpaphic, American Voices and material that's only in the print edition, like obituaries and wedding announcements. It can be a long and grueling time poring over jokes. Not the laughter-filled envoironment you would think. Today went well, though, because we talked about our various horrifying exam stories. Clockwise from lower left: Megan Ganz, Mike DiCenzo, Dan Guterman, Chris Karwowski, Chet Clem and Andrei Nechita. Any day aw nuts to it.


These are the fake magazines I make out of the cardboard that comes in our Chinese food orders. The reason the upper left one (White Baby Magazine) is so perforated and whited out is that Dan Guterman can not stop fiddling with things. In this case, he chose to stab my fake magazine with a pencil. I have since bought him a Rubik's Snake to fiddle with. It does okay.


And these are the origami bears I fold to keep my hands occupied. Right brain activity or some such nonsense.


And lastly, this is our fake Albert Brooks autographed photo. I have a few more blank photos. Let me know if you want me to sign one as Albert Brooks for you, and I will send you one. I can also do Robert Altman if you'd like.

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip Pilot

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Here's the pilot for Aaron Sorkin's SNL behind-the-scenes dramedy, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip.

(thanks, Marty!)

Children of Los Angeles: Now is YOUR TIME TO SHINE

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Our pal Nick Adams sends along this choice tidbit about our pal, the wonderful San Francisco-bred, LA-based comedian Al Madrigal.

Sunday Afternoons for Kids!
Sunday, Aug 6 12pm

Al Madrigal

Madrigal was the 2004 HBO Aspen Comedy Festival winner for best stand-up comedian. He recently appeared in the television show The Ortegas. Madrigal teaches children the elements of a funny story.

In collaboration with 826LA, the Hammer Museum continues its series of workshops for children ages 8 to 13 on creative ways to write about and understand visual art. Space is limited to 20 students, and reservations are required. Email rsvp@826la.com or call 310-305-8418 by Thursday, August 3 to reserve a space for your child.

News from Scranton, Pennsylvania

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Not to butt in (again) on Joe's SUPERB guest-blogging, but I'm pretty excited to have a stolen internet connection for the moment, so I thought I'd share this great picture that Kelly from Scranton, PA sent. This is shot right outside Scranton's City Hall.

Now, if the picture looks unremarkable to you, check out the banner on the right-hand side, just above and to the left of the traffic light. Click the picture to enlarge it, if you can't read the text. Does that company name ring a bell?

Someone in Scranton's city goverment deserves a promotion.

Rejoice! Fries French Again!

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If you ate in any of the Captol Hill House of Representatives cafeterias, you had to eat Freedom Fries and Freedom Toast. Until now. Story here.

My favorite quote comes from a spokesperson for Representative Bob Ney (R-Ohio), one of the goofballs that originally sponsored the move

"We don't have a comment for your story," said a spokeswoman for Mr. Ney.

Way to cut and run, Congressman Ney. Let Frenchdom ring!

Thanks to Reason Online for the tip.

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