Eastern Market: This is a DC staple. It burned down last night. Fenty promises to rebuild it. Whatever initiatives the community comes up with you'll see posted here.
More from the Washington Post

Big Lebowski Action Figures.
That is correct, I said Big-&*($!-Lebowski Action Figures. Get your grubby paws on them through Uncrate.com.


This is a delicious romp through what I have to guess is modern Azerbaijan. I commend it to the attention of those who appreciate less-than-likable protagonists, wry commentary on the steel-and-glass instant empires springing up in places like Dubai, and stabs at the current trend toward "revolution viz. the media."

You can find out more at Amazon. Or, as always, you can ask us and we will loan it to you!


People argue over what the Noahite law of "eiver min ha'chai" (prohibition on eating a limb from a live animal) applies to. Lobster is a maybe, live octopus tentacles -- that is most definitely a, "Yes!" Don't believe me?

Check out this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvyunwtlvuc&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fgizmodo%2Ecom%2F


RSC actually got a ticket for jaywalking! I understand the public safety concern, but cracking down on this common practice is just silly - and has repeatedly been proven silly - in major cities. To review:
  • NYC tried this with $5 tix. People literally laughed at the cops. Then they got angry. The tix stopped.
  • No other major city in America gives out these tix to my knowledge. There are different cultures regarding jaywalking -- for example, it is rampant in DC, Boston, NYC, and other such old world crowded cities. On the other hand, LA, Portland, ATL, and other, newer magalopolises have a more docile populace. Of course, the roads there are wider and permit higher speeds.
I will not rant; I will ask for responsibility first and action second: DC assumes you will jaywalk. The lights are not timed for pedestrians at rush hour, but for cars. Many lights are too short, others too long. Others should simply include an "x cross" feature (I am looking at you, Farragut Square) during periods of very high congestion. Thus, to walk this city is to jaywalk this city. If MPD wants to hand out tickets, lets see a little civic planning first to fix these problems and improve pedestrian flow. Do that, and I think people will be less resentful of the ticketing. Don't, and you can expect an angry backlash.

(Brace yourselves, it's coming)


I finally have my "young associate" story. I am writing from the basement of client's offices -- a small pre-fab structure nestled down a side street in a rural town in the deep south. Outside is a toolshed piled high with boxes. I am taking inventory to see what we can, should, or need to provide to the feds. Yup, the feds. In the age of hyper-contracting by the government, this little office does 8 figures a year in government business. To put that in perspective...these 13 people wield the same capital as a 100 person firm in a major city.

Now they face criminal charges...funny thing is, nobody is unhappy with their performance, just their paperwork and corporate relationships.



Iron Chef shows we will never see:

  • Secret Ingredient: Ramen!
  • Secret Ingredient: Bacos!
  • Secret Ingredient: . . . .WATER!
...how about a "restricted ingredient" show?
  • No Salt.
  • No Water.
  • No Heat.


"Pleasanty Surprise of Groping"
- translated motto of the Beijing Olympics on a sign in that city. A more proper translation is reported to be "Find something new and be pleasantly surprised."

See it at the NY Times


Clientcopia is why I don't miss my life as a designer. Check out their actual quotes from clients.



Overheard at IKEA yesterday:

"Dude, what if you had a . . .um . . . slave, and you wanted to pass it off on Craigslist.com so that, like, people wouldn't know you had one."

"If I had a slave and I wanted to get rid of him, I would free him."

"Oh. But . . .what if you wanted to be nonchalant about it and be like, 'A used DVD player, and you can make an offer on the XboX, oh and this is Tyrone . . .'"

"Why does your slave have to be black?"

"Ok, so here's the DVD, and here's the XboX, Oh, and this is Alan."

"Alan. That's a nice name. If you are a slave, your master should free you."

[ p.s. we moved! ]


Thanks to JR for noting this:

"I'm in the private sector and for the first time in my life I'm earning money. You know that's sort of part of the Jewish tradition." - Tommy Thompson in front of the nation's Reform Judiasm action committee in D.C.

Happily, there goes that candidacy.


RIP Vonnegut. To pen humor about the streets of Dresden, where you emerged as a POW to witness the devastation wrought by your own countrymen, is to elevate humor to its original state as a foil to great tragedy.

"She was a dull person, but a sensational invitation to make babies. Men looked at her and wanted to fill her up with babies right away."

- Slaughterhouse Five


For those of you who wonder about my often contrarian view of foreign policy and military conflict, meet my teacher, Prof. Andrew Bacevich, Lt. Col. Ret.

He embodies the thoughtfulness we should expect of all self-proclaimed experts in foreign policy. Thus, he neither a neo-con nor a blame-america-firster; neither a dove nor a hawk; neither a Bushie or that new breed of the conservative front, the post-Bushie. He is instead an ardent student of history because weapons are new, but conflict is very, very old. He is a pragmatist, understanding that things are never simple on the battlefield. And he is funny - because foreign policy is nothing if not rife with irony.

He is the author of American Empire. I commend it to anyone reading this -- it is accessible and perspective-altering.


Saw a Lunesta spot last night. Listed as a possible side-effect of the popular "sleep aid": drowsiness.


leaving home for home
tall stacks of moving boxes
displace my comfort


"There's no right way to eat a Rhesus." -MentalFloss.com


Turns out that the outmoded idiom, "slow boat to China," is actually an old poker term. A card-shark finding a whale (dead money to you land-lubbers) would tell him that he'd like to "get him on a slow boat to China." There's no specific boat in mind. Indeed, the phrase was most likely used by east coasters or south-westers, nowhere near the necessary ports of call.


(p.s. The idiom got me riffing on the irony that our language contains an idiom about how slowly we travel to the very country with which we have the largest trade deficit. It's as if, in a Shanghai cafe, one should expect to hear businessmen on deadline talking about putting their work "on the hydrofoil to Frisco.")


Erev Pesach is probably the most overlooked part of the entire holiday. We today scramble as our forebears must have scrambled to prepare for the great exodus, from Egypt to the wilderness, from the boroughs to the Florida beaches, or from our kitchens to some more cramped and unfamiliar version of our kitchens.


Oh, and for those of you who complain about the gastro-intestinal consequences of Matzah, just remember that our complaints are nothing. Our ancestors got a few days out and actually begged Moses to take them back to slavery rather than be forced to eat more of the stuff.
"Easter teaches..."

Easter teaches that Jesus was really a large rabbit who could lay colored eggs of salvation. If man can find the eggs, he can be saved.


Use commas, they help. To wit:

25 yo SWF likes seal, clubbing.

- vs. -
25 yo SWF likes seal clubbing.